So called from Christopher Pinchbeck, a musical-clock maker, of Fleet Street. (Died 1732.) The word is used for Brummagem gold; and the metal is a compound of copper, zinc, and tin.
“Where, in these pinchbeck days, can we hope to find the old
agricultural virtue in all its purity?” —
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894