1893 text

A salt eel is a rope’s end cut from the piece to be used on the back of a culprit. “Yeow shall have salt eel for supper” is an emphatic threat.

2 Annotations

TerryF   Link to this

"A salt eel. A rope’s end, used for scourging. At one time eelskins were used for whips [to correct boys, &c. at sea]."
“With my salt eele, went down in the parler, and there got my boy and did beat him.”—Pepys Diary (April 24th [1663]). http://www.bartleby.com/81/5655.html

in Aqua Scripto   Link to this

eel, it doth dull a sharp knife very quickly, 'tis tougher than a cane and doth have more flex to get around the victim to ensure that the weal be uniform from start to finish.

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