1) A hard, bituminous coal which burns with a very bright flame.

In 1538, Leland referred to a Mr Bradshaw who lived a mile or so from Wigan who had ‘found moche Canel like Se Coole [sea coal] in his Grounde very profitable to hym’. Most other early references are from that part of England, e.g. 1547 Fyre wood and turve xxxiijs iiijd, ij lodes off canel vs, Wardley

1562 one cage with cole and cannel, Morleys. In Yorkshire the evidence is late and the word seems likely to have arrived there from Lancashire. It was used as an alternative for stone coal: 1783 the cannel or stone coal … sells for 6d per horse load and the black coal for only 2d per horse load, Batley. The origin remains uncertain although some writers claim that it derived from ‘candle coal’, because it burnt without much smoke. That is formally possible but not proven.

spellings cannel coal
dates 1547 1783

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