1) One of the species of martens, but used loosely in more recent times for any animal of the genus <i>Mustela</i>, including ferrets and stoats (OED).

1731 I called at Burnley [Burn Lee] ... to look at a wild dog which ... they took for a Martin and hunted it often before they could take it, New Mill. The fur of martens was prized in the Middle Ages and huge amounts were imported: 1424 unam togam nigram furruratam cum marterenz, Bawtry

1446 et meam optimam togam furruratam cum martes, Roche

1453 1 tymbre marterns

1463 3 martskynnes

1471 10 martfelles, Hull

1508 j toga scarleta penulata cum lez martrons, York.

spellings marten
dates 1424 1446 1453 1463 1471 1508 1731

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