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An iron or wood, 3- or 4-sided spindle, terminating in a fork, crutch, or nut head, which is fitted vertically over the RHYND of an underdriven millstone; employed to agitate the SHOE thus feeding grain to the eye of the stones. Known as an agitator in northern counties. Those with three sides are known as three-beat damsels; those with four as four-beat damsels.

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Alternative terms

Term Language Region
babillard, claquet, frayon, battant m, quenouille, chandelle, 'toupie' f French
Dansil English
Dolly English
Four-Beat Damsel English
Knocker English County Durham
Mill Clapper or Clack English Somerset; Scotland
Mühlklapper f, Drei-, Vier¦schlag, Anschlag, ‘Tanzmeister’ m German
opzetspil, juffer Dutch
Rattler English
Three Beat Damsel English

See syntax and abbreviations used in the TIMS Dictionary definitions.
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See also