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pun·cheon 1

1. A short wooden upright used in structural framing.
a. A piece of broad, heavy, roughly dressed timber with one face finished flat.
b. A walkway over wet ground made by laying planks or dressed timbers over sills set directly on the ground.
c. A short low bridge of similar construction. Also called puncheon bridge.
3. A punching, perforating, or stamping tool, especially one used by a goldsmith.

[Middle English punchoun, from Anglo-Norman ponchon, punching or piercing tool, piercing weapon, vertical strut, from Vulgar Latin *pūnctiō, pūnctiōn-, from *pūnctiāre, to pierce, from Latin pūnctus, past participle of pungere, to prick; see peuk- in Indo-European roots.]

pun·cheon 2

1. A cask with a capacity of from 72 to 120 gallons (273 to 454 liters).
2. The amount of liquid contained in a puncheon.

[Middle English punchoun, from Anglo-Norman ponchon, punching tool, cask (probably because the casks were inspected and marked with a punch); see puncheon1.]
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.


1. (Units) a large cask of variable capacity, usually between 70 and 120 gallons
2. (Units) the volume of such a cask used as a liquid measure
[C15 poncion, from Old French ponchon, of uncertain origin]


1. (Building) a short wooden post that is used as a vertical strut
2. (Tools) a less common name for punch21
[C14 ponson, from Old French ponçon, from Latin punctiō a puncture, from pungere to prick]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈpʌn tʃən)

1. a large cask of varying capacity, often 80 gallons (304 liters).
2. the volume of such a cask, used as a measure.
[1425–75; Middle English ponchoun, punchon < Middle French ponçon]


(ˈpʌn tʃən)

1. a heavy slab of roughly dressed timber for use as a floorboard.
2. a short, upright framing timber.
3. any of various pointed instruments or stamping tools used by goldsmiths; punch.
[1325–75; Middle English ponson, punçon, ponchoun < Middle French ponçon < Latin pūnctiōnem, acc. of pūnctiō pricking =pung(ere) to prick (compare point)]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
This canteen (with a funnel on its top, like a cavalier cap slouched over the eyes) was set on edge upon the puncheon, with the hole toward myself; and through this hole, which seemed puckered up like the mouth of a very precise old maid, the creature was emitting certain rumbling and grumbling noises which he evidently intended for intelligible talk.
Methought he stood at the foot of the couch, drew aside the curtains, and, in the hollow, detestable tones of a rum puncheon, menaced me with the bitterest vengeance for the contempt with which I had treated him.
So I slid out and slipped off up the road, and there warn't anybody at the church, except maybe a hog or two, for there warn't any lock on the door, and hogs likes a puncheon floor in summer-time because it's cool.
So deep did they go; and so ancient, and corroded, and weedy the aspect of the lowermost puncheons, that you almost looked next for some mouldy corner-stone cask containing coins of Captain Noah, with copies of the posted placards, vainly warning the infatuated old world from the flood.
If I lend him a helping hand, the only difference is, that he may, upon the whole, possibly drink a few gallons, or puncheons, or hogsheads, less in this life than he otherwise would.
We had passed through walls of piled bones, with casks and puncheons intermingling, into the inmost recesses of catacombs.
Former Southampton and Crystal Palace midfielder Jason Puncheon has joined Pafos FC in a deal the Cypriot club has described as "the greatest transfer" in its history.
ROY HODGSON insists the departure of veterans Julian Speroni and Jason Puncheon does not mean Crystal Palace are embarking on a "new era".
WILL Jason Puncheon be considered for selection by Huddersfield Town against Bournemouth today?
Roy Hodgson says Jason Puncheon is very much part of his plans at Crystal Palace but admits he's not sure what the future holds for the midfielder.
Most Premier League bosses look to rest players in the EFL Cup, but boss Hodgson revealed there will be familiar names in the Eagles' starting XI, with the likes of Jason Puncheon itching for competitive action.