cattle beast

cattle beast n [Prob from Scots, though the earliest quot below slightly antedates the earliest known Scots example; cf SND at cattle n. 3.(1). It occurs in other English speaking countries as well, esp Canada and New Zealand. ] Note: Esp in the period from c1880 to 1910 this term is not infrequent in Amer. agricultural journals, chiefly in discussions of scientific cattle rearing, but in most cases the authors were in fact of Canadian or Scottish origin; this does not appear to reflect popular US usage and is not illustrated here. eNC obs? Cf beast n B2, cow beast n, horse beast n

A domestic bovine animal.

a1829 in 1836 Devereux Cases Supreme Court NC 592 ceNC, [Plymouth NC ordinance:] Resolved therefore, that the owner of such cattle shall cause them to be penned . . under the penalty of fifty cents for each omission, and for each and every cattle beast not so penned. 1839 Swaim NC Justice 99, Whereas, —— complains to me . . that . . one of the cars of the —— Rail Road Company did run against and kill, or greatly injure, (as the case may be,) one of his cattle beasts, [etc]. 1850 Chambers’s Jrl. 14.374 neNC, By the farmers’ wives we were told many wonderful tales of the devastations committed by the bears and wild animals of the swamp and forest—even ‘cattle beasts and critters’ (Anglicé, cows and horses), they assured us, were ofttimes carried off. 1864 Daily Conservative (Raleigh NC) 14 Nov [2]/2, We heard the other day that government agents were impressing every seventh cow or cattle beast in the country—also flour, corn, &c. 1875 North Carolinian (Elizabeth City NC) 13 Oct [3]/1, If you have a fine colt, or horse, or cattle beast, or sheep or pig—bring them to the Fair next week. 1899 Washington Progress (NC) 11 May, We are sorry to say that a young man of this place [=Campbells Creek] had the audacity to kill a fine cattle beast belonging to R. H. Mixon. 1925 News & Observer (Raleigh NC) 14 June 9/3 Ocracoke Is. NC, “They ain’t nary cattle-beast left on this island,” said Big Ike O’Neal irrelevantly after a while. 1946 PADS 6.8 eNC, Cattle beast. . . General term for a bovine animal. Pamlico [Co.], 1900–05. Common. 1951 Asheville Citizen–Times (NC) 30 Dec sec B 8/6 Hatteras Is. NC, In a sense, Old Buck is as real as Old Christmas, even if the legendary figure carries only the skull and horns of a cattlebeast of the banks. 1962 AmSp 37.174 Ocracoke Is. NC, A single cow is frequently referred to as a cattlebeast.

Etymological Supplement:

1835 Great Britain. Municipal Corporations (Scotland) Commissioners Local Reports 3.112, Table of the Customs of Kirriemuir. . . For ever horse or cattle beast—one penny and halfpenny. And for every sheep—one farthin.