One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A large saw with handles at each end, used in a vertical position by two people, one standing above the timber to be cut, the other in a pit below it.
- ‘Shafts could be ripped by handsaw from one-inch planks cut with a pit saw, or they were sometimes split from a billet with a froe, or wedge.’
- ‘The use of the pit saw required that men work in teams of two, one to handle the up-stroke, the other to pull down on the saw to make the cut.’
- ‘There is mention of only 13 saws in the Kingdom in England, leading us to think that they were probably pit saws that could be used to separate a plank from a log.’
- ‘Furthermore, licences have been issued to five pit saw millers who are specifically allotted trees they cut and frequently monitored to ensure that they do not engage in activities that are contrary to the provisions of their licences.’
pit saw/ˈpit ˌsô/
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