[Ads-l] wench

David Barnhart dbarnhart at HIGHLANDS.COM
Tue Mar 29 12:00:54 UTC 2016

My son, Grant, found in his work for the Dutchess County Historical
Society, the following advertisement from 1809:

FOR SALE--A healthy
Negro Wench,
About 21 years of age, will suit in or country, can spin, and do any kind
of house work.

*Poughkeepsie Barameter*
[Poughkeepsie, N.Y.], March 8, 1809.

Compare eOED:

 *b.* *U.S.* (See quots.)
1765   *Boston Gaz.* 17 June   'Tis said the Fire was occasioned by a Negro
Wench carrying a Quantity of Ashes.
1828   Webster *Amer. Dict. Eng. Lang.*   *Wench*,..3. In America, a black
or colored female servant; a negress.
1848   J. R. Bartlett *Dict. Americanisms*
1891   *Cent. Dict.*   *Wench*. 3 (*c*) A colored woman of any age; a
negress or mulattress, especially one in service. (Colloq.)

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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