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[Note: The former entry bread hoe was incorporated into sense 2.]

hoe n

See hoe hand n.
also bread hoe (formerly also baking hoe): A griddle for baking hoecake n. [Prob because the implement used to bake hoecake was originally a hoe blade; note that the “hoe plate” listed with kitchen implements in quot 1673 prob means “hoe blade.” (But see Cofield, in the paper cited below, for a different view of the etym.) ] Sth, S Midl old-fash Cf hoecake n, spider n 1
[1673 in 2008 Cofield How Hoe Cake 5 (Internet) MD, An old skillet, a chafen dish, a hoe plate all at 25 [lbs. of tobacco].] 1753 Ibid 4 seVA, 2 Trivets 2/6, A Coffee Pot 4/, A Grid Iron Bread hoe 5/. 1770 Ibid 5 seVA, 1 Spice Mortar 2/ [&] 1 baking hoe 3/9. 1771 VA Gaz. (Williamsburg) (eds. Purdie–Dixon) 12 Dec [3]/2, [Advt:] Iron Pots . . , Iron Dogs and Backs, Iron and Copper Tea Kettles, Mortars, Skillets, Salamanders, Bread Hoes [etc]. 1810 in 2011 Winter Amer. Dreams 68 seVA, A baking hoe[,] 2 spits[,] 1 pot & 2 pr. pot hooks. 1820 GA Jrl. (Milledgeville) [15 Feb 4]/3, [Advt:] One tea kittle, one bread hoe, one trivet [etc]. 1850 Richmond Whig & Pub. Advt. (VA) 24 May [2]/5, The deceased . . declared before his death, that the Prisoner caused the wound . . by striking him on the head with a skillet or baking hoe. 1893 Shands MS Speech 37, Hoe. . . [A] culinary utensil, a kind of skillet without sides. In this are baked hoe-cakes. Bartlett says that these cakes are so called because they are baked on hoes . . in some of the interior parts of the country where cooking-vessels are scarce. If this be true, I suppose that hoe, the skillet, is derived through hoe-cake from hoe, the agricultural tool, as the cakes baked on the cooking-vessels are of the same kind as those . . baked on the tools. 1902 Young Plantation Legends 246 AL [Black], And soon dey done cookin’ and gets up and empty out de skillits, turn de bread offer de bread-hoes, pour out de rich pot, scrape de spiders,—and den dey eat! 1907 Outing 49.582 NC, Sometimes we wandered . . into the kitchen and took stock of . . the out-of-date cooking utensils that were resting peacefully there. . . As for cooking vessels there were “spiders” and “trivets” and “skillets” and “hoes.” I lay you a wager that to-day a “bread-hoe” would puzzle the courts. 1947 McDavid Coll. neGA, Hoe—a griddle for breadmaking. Shallow, may be round or square. 1958 PADS 29.11 cTN, Hoe. . . A frying pan. “. . A spider (sometimes called hoe) is not the same, as it [=a hoe] has no sides—or practically none. It is a griddle for broiling, or for baking top-of-stove breads.” 1967 DARE Tape SC46, Spread it [=batter] out evenly . . on a griddle—they call it a bread hoe. . . [FW:] Is that the same thing as a griddle? [Inf:] Yeah, same thing . . but it was iron, iron bread hoe. Everybody called ’em bread hoes . . and we call ’em bread hoes to this day. [1968 DARE (Qu. F1, . . A heavy metal pan that’s used to fry foods) Inf NC50, Hoe handle—same as spider.] 1983 DARE File neGA (as of 1947), Bread hoe—griddle.
in phr mad as a hoe: See quot. Cf hoe handle n 2
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