One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A sheep caught by a shearer just before the bell rings to signal the end of a period of work, which they are allowed to shear.‘they worked as only shearers work when they're cutting for a bell sheep’
- ‘Shearers often allowed the rouseabout to shear the bell sheep.’
- ‘For an hour they worked as only shearers work when they're cutting for a bell sheep.’
- ‘He times himself to get so many sheep out of the pen before the bell goes, and one more—the 'bell sheep'—as it is ringing.’
- ‘It can become one's bell sheep, caught just before the bell goes and able to be shorn at leisure into the break.’
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