Berlin (Carriage) - Encyclopedia


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BERLIN, a four-wheeled carriage with a separate hooded seat behind, detached from the body of the vehicle; so called from having been first used in Berlin. It was designed about 1670, by a Piedmontese architect in the service of the elector of Brandenburg. It was used as a travelling carriage, and Swift refers to it in his advice to authors "who scribble in a berlin." As an adjective, the word is used to indicate a special kind of goods, originally made in Berlin, of which the best known is Berlin wool. A Berlin warehouse is a shop for the sale of wools and fancy goods (cf. Italian warehouse). The spelling "berlin" is also used by Sir Walter Scott for the "birlinn," a large Gaelic rowing-boat.

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