One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Hard, heavy timber which blackens with age and is used for musical instruments.
This timber is obtained from the Jamaican ebony (Brya ebenus, family Leguminosae)
- ‘Older pipes made of cocus wood were common in the late 18th and throughout the 19th centuries.’
- ‘Most bagpipes that are made of rosewood, sheesham wood, or cocus wood are commonly considered inferior in quality.’
- ‘During the 19th century, cocus wood became available from the West Indies and quickly became the standard timber for flutes and other woodwinds from that period.’
- ‘An instrument maker who had dermatitis showed a positive patch test reaction to cocus wood but evidence for contact with the wood was circumstantial.’
Mid 17th century: cocus, of unknown origin.
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