1) Wood suitable for major building projects, that is houses, mills, ships, etc, sometimes called great timber or timber trees.
1557 xij posted tymber trees xls, vij rughe tymber trees, Thornton Bridge
c.1565 delivered of the Quenes Wooddes … to William Cawdiner xx timbre trees, Goathland
1722 Eighty Acres of Wood Ground … consisting as well of Timber Trees as Spring Wood, Headingley. A lease of 1609 required the tenant to repair the house, the buildings and the fences therof … with all manner of needful … reparacons … greate tymber onlie excepted, Kirkheaton. In 1619-21, William Wood was fined xs for taking two timber oke trees in Newton dale, Pickering. Which trees fell into the category of timber trees was capable of legal definition but might differ from one region to another: in Yorkshire, for example, in 1818, ‘birch trees were timber’. It is an element in some minor place-names, as in the grange that Roche Abbey had in Thurstonland: 1275 ‘the serjeant of Tymberwode’, Thurstonland: when Bolton Priory was assarting land in 1313-4 expenses were incurred at Tymberwath
that is ‘timber ford’. A document of 1711 provides evidence of the word’s versatility: The Lord appoints competent timber for making and repairing the yeates of the common, littlestead styles, the stocks, common goat stocks, the clowes & bridges, & boues for mending the highways, Scalm Park.
2) A word used in the fur trade for a bundle of forty skins. It is thought that they were originally packed flat between thin boards.