(kô′fəl, kŏf′əl)
A group of animals, prisoners, or slaves chained together in a line.
tr.v. cof·fled, cof·fling, cof·fles
To fasten together in a coffle.

[Arabic qāfila, caravan, feminine active participle of qafala, to close, return; see qpl in Semitic roots.]


(esp formerly) a line of slaves, beasts, etc, fastened together
[C18: from Arabic qāfilah caravan]


 a train of slaves or of beasts driven along together.
Examples: coffle of asses, 1799; of beasts; of horses, 1873; of slaves, 1799.
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References in periodicals archive ?
In Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery, and Self-Making in Nineteenth Century America, Saidiya Hartman writes that "nineteenth-century observers" of a coffle of enslaved people described that coffle (in its formation and its movement/passage) as "a domestic middle passage.
The slave coffle behind him stopped its shuffling as chicken eater failed to spear his choice.
The narrator of "Heartland" connects physical decay to a widespread environmental and moral corrosion: the rat-infested, disease-smeared dungeons ringed with chains, the lifeless and desolate plain near the slave fort, the narrator's prison-like room "three short paces" long (14), the pervasive smell of the slave coffle, the governor's illness and death, the soldier Lewis's increasing degeneration and drunkenness, a fort official's terrible scarring and sexual abuse of the African girl, and the beating suffered by the narrator.
Number by painful number you inch on like a coffle of slaves being sold down the river.
The seeds was ground to a fine a powder, using the coffle mill attachment of a Moulinex domestic food bender and the powder was kept in a desiccators for later use in stock solutions.
The slave had been condemned to death for leading an uprising of a coffle, a group of chained slaves, in 1829 Kentucky.
26) The scars of this horror become a sign for all of the nightmare "out there": when the slaves with whom she has escaped from a coffle "spoke around the campfire.
Saturday - Group A: M Moorhouse, M Kay, E Heads, N Fisher, N Coffle, E Dean, J Lawson, P Carlin, J Phillipson, E Hind.
The slave trade is also explored through a selection of sometimes harrowing photographs: a coffle chain with shackles, the Cape Coast dungeon doors in Ghana, and a slave branding iron.
Mary Kemp Davis points out that two slave women actually figured in the escape from the coffle, one the model for Dessa, who helped lead the revolt, and the other a woman who helped a wounded white man escape to raise an alarm and thus proved a traitor to her fellow slaves by aiding their recapture (p.
In Part III, a year after he helped Washington escape to Canada, Listwell happens upon Washington again, this time in a slave coffle in Virginia.
A pregnant black woman helped to lead an uprising on a coffle .