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Related to bilboes: Branks, pillory, orlop, Bilbies, mutinies

bil·bo 1

n. pl. bil·boes
An iron bar to which sliding fetters are attached, formerly used to shackle the feet of prisoners.

[Origin unknown.]

bil·bo 2

n. pl. bil·boes Archaic
A sword, especially one having a well-tempered blade.

[After Bilbao.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


pl n
(Historical Terms) a long iron bar with two sliding shackles, formerly used to confine the ankles of a prisoner
[C16: perhaps changed from Bilbao]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in classic literature ?
“Where away, master constable, is the use of clapping a man in them here bilboes? It neither stops his grog nor hurts his back; what for is it that you do the thing?”
“Hark ye, master constable,” he cried, “just clear away your bilboes for the small matter of a log-glass, will ye, and let me show some of them there chaps who it is they are so merry about”
But we’ll send a hand over and ask the woman for a taste, for I’m so jammed in these here bilboes that I begin to want summat to lighten my upper works.”