• WordNet 3.6
    • n steelyard a portable balance consisting of a pivoted bar with arms of unequal length
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Steelyard stēl"yärd ; stĭl"yẽrd A form of balance in which the body to be weighed is suspended from the shorter arm of a lever, which turns on a fulcrum, and a counterpoise is caused to slide upon the longer arm to produce equilibrium, its place upon this arm (which is notched or graduated) indicating the weight; a Roman balance; -- very commonly used also in the plural form, steelyards.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n steelyard A place in London, comprising great warehouses called before the reign of Edward IV. Gildhalla Teutonicorum, ‘Gildhall of the Germans,’ where, until expelled in 1597, the merchants of the Hanseatic League had their English headquarters; also, the company of merchants themselves. The merchants of the Steelyard were bound by almost monastic gild-rules, under a separate jurisdiction from the rest of London, were exempt from many exactions and restrictions, and for centuries controlled most of the foreign trade of England.
    • n steelyard A kind of balance with two unequal arms, consisting of a lever in the form of a slender iron bar with one arm very short, the other divided by equidistant notches, having a small crosspiece as fulcrum, to which a bearing for suspension is attached, usually a hook at the short end, and a weight moving upon the long arm. It is very portable, without liability to become separated, and the process of weighing is very expeditious. It is much used for cheap commodities, but owing to its simple construction it is liable to be so made as to give false indications. Often used in the plural. Also called Roman balance or beam. Compare Danish balance (sometimes called Banish steelyard), under balance.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Steelyard stēl′yärd the Roman balance, an instrument for weighing, consisting of a lever with unequal arms, in using which a single weight or counterpoise is employed, being moved along a graduated beam.
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
So named from a place in London called the Steelyard, which was a yard in which steel was sold
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Orig. the yard in London where steel was sold by German merchants.


In literature:

The congregation of neighbours think I mane my son Bob, naturally; but the secret is that I mane the bob o' the steelyard.
"A Pair of Blue Eyes" by Thomas Hardy
Siven pounds he'll weigh by the steelyard I'll wager you.
"At the Foot of the Rainbow" by Gene Stratton-Porter
Consider, it is the only steelyard in all this new world of ours; it is worth more, much more.
"Off on a Comet" by Jules Verne
The weights were very ingeniously made; the steelyard system was adopted.
"The South Pole, Volumes 1 and 2" by Roald Amundsen
The steelyard and weighing-balance are their especial objects of dislike.
"The Great Lone Land" by W. F. Butler
By the position of the weight or pea on the steelyard she knew that it was put somewhere near the sixty notch.
"Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, October, 1877, Vol. XX. No. 118" by Various
Steelyard = pesilo, pesmasxino.
"English-Esperanto Dictionary" by John Charles O'Connor and Charles Frederic Hayes
He heaped it recklessly on some paper, and laid it on the steelyards.
"Pembroke" by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
There the capture was hung upon one of the hooks of the steelyard.
"Three Boys" by George Manville Fenn
Contains an interesting account of the Steelyard.
"An Introduction to the Industrial and Social History of England" by Edward Potts Cheyney

In news:

Steelyard Commons, the big shopping center near downtown Cleveland, appears on the verge of its first major expansion since it opened in 2007 on the site of a former LTV steel mill.
The Steelyard Commons section of the Towpath Trail has been criticized for resembling a "cattle chute".
One of the saddest new additions to the Cleveland landscape sits behind the Steelyard Commons shopping center, which opened in the industrial Flats south of downtown in 2007.
Cleveland's Steelyard Commons retail center has a good first year.
Now, looking back, it's amazing Steelyard Commons didn't sprout up sooner.
Key Bank in Cleveland's Steelyard Commons robbed.
He was lost in the Steelyard Commons area, near West 12th Street.