Old Occupations and archaic terms, A-F
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Last updated on 1st April 2014, and currently contains over 2500 entries.
The occupations that follow have been gleaned from a variety of sources. Many have been taken from the various census returns that we have searched through over many years of research, but we have also relied heavily on the following publications, for which we duly acknowledge.
Dictionary of Nautical Words and Terms, C.W.T. Layton, revised by Peter Clissold, and further revised by Captain A.G.W. Miller, Revised 4th edition 1994. First published 1955.
The Parish Chest, W.E. Tate, 1959 3rd edition. First published 1946.
The Companion to British History, Charles Arnold-Baker. 2007 edition. First published 1996.
The book of English Trades: And Library of the Useful Arts. By John Souter, Published 1818.
The Universal Etymological English Dictionary, by N. Bailey, London, 1737, Vol. II.
1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, A Buckish slang, University wit and pickpocket eloquence by Francis Grose.
Chambers Entomological Dictionary of the English Language, by James Donald, 1868.
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary, edited by the Rev Thomas Davidson, 1908.
The Durham Mining Museum website.
Wikipedia, under the Creative Commins Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License agreement.
Abacist: Someone who uses an abacus in casting accounts.
Abactor: Someone who steals or drives away cattle. Another word for a cattle rustler. (Latin)
Abbess: (1) A Mother Superior. (from the Latin abbatissa) (2) The mistress of a brothel. (slang)
Abbott: Male leader of a religious community based at an Abbey or Monastery.
Abigail: An early 19th century term for a Lady's Maid. Believed to refer to Abigail Hill (Baroness Masham, circa 1670-6 December 1734, and at one time, the Keeper of the Privy Purse.) The daughter of a London Merchant, Francis Hill.
Abjectarius: A Woodworker. (Latin)
Able Seaman: An experienced seaman, normally with at least two years service. More skilled than an ordinary seaman and able to perform everyday duties. Equivalent to a private in the army.
Abraham Men: A beggar who faked madness and sought alms after the dissolution of the religious houses. (Originally a lunatic beggar from Bethlehem Hospital in London)
Abram: A beggar who faked madness and sought alms after the dissolution of the religious houses.
Absolutist: A supporter of absolute government.
Absquatulate(r): A squatter.
Academite: A Navy term for an Officer brought up in the Royal Navel Academy (later College) at Portsmouth.
Academician: A member of an academy, college or university.
Acater: A supplier of provisions. A caterer.
Accipitary: A falconer, who trained birds of prey for hunting.
Accomptant: An obsolete word for an accountant.
Accoucheur: A male obstetrician or midwife. (Literally: one who is present at the bedside)
Accoucheuse: A female midwife.
Accoutrement Maker: Maker or supplier of military wear and accessories.
Acematae: An order of Monks who supported the Council of Chalcedon.
Achatour: The caterer of a Naval mess.
Acicularius: A maker of needles. (Latin)
Acierage plater: This involves the covering of copper plate with a film of iron to enhance durability.
Ackerman: Another spelling of Acreman, otherwise a bonded agricultural labourer who performed similar duties to a ploughman.
Ackman: A freshwater pirate. (also known as Ack Pirates)
Acolyte: A Layperson who performs minor duties assisting the clergy during a religious service-lighting altar candles or carrying a cross for example.
Acreman: A bonded man working as a ploughman.
Acto maker: This would be someone who made a defensive tunic, often of quilted leather, which would be worn under a coat of mail. (Sometimes an Acton maker)
Actuary: A Financial Clerk. In particular someone who calculates the premium for an insurance.
Adamite: A small early church sect who believed they could get closer to the Garden of Eden and Adam by practicing nudity.
Adam Tiler: A pickpocket's assistant who receives the stolen items and runs off with them.
Adelantado:(1) An aide to the King of Spain. (2) A Navy slang for an Admiral.
Adjudicateur: A Judge, or a person granting an award.
Adjutant: This is a military rank or appointment. In some armies, including most English-speaking ones, it is an officer who assists a more senior officer.
Adjutant General: Chief administrative officer to a general or other senior officer.
Administrator: Person appointed by a court to settle the estate of a deceased person who died without making a Will.
Admiral: A naval officer competent to command a fleet of ships.
Admiral of the Blue: (1) A landlord or publican wearing a blue apron, as was formerly the custom among gentlemen of that vocation. (2) Originally an admiral commanding the rear of the fleet (later a rear-admiral took up this responsibility)
Admiral of the Fleet: The highest rank in the Royal Navy.
Admiral of the Red: A senior admiral commanding the centre division of a fleet.
Admiral of the Van: An admiral commanding the van division of the fleet. (later a vice-admiral)
Adventist: A believer in the second coming of Jesus.
Advocate: A professional representative or pleader in court.
Advocatus: A Lawyer (Latin).
Advocate Depute: A Scottish Public Prosecutor.
Advowee: A person holding the right to present a candidate for a vacant religious benefice.
Aedificator: A builder.
Aedile: A Magistrate with responsibility for public buildings or public markets.
Aedilis: A Magistrate with responsibility for public buildings or public markets.
Aegyptus: A Gypsy. (Latin)
Aerolithologist: Involved with the study of meteorites.
Aeronaut: (1) Circus or Music Hall trapeze artist. (2) An early aviator. (3) A Manorial Court Official who would have collected taxes.
Aewul maker: The maker of a twig basket used for catching fish.
Affeerer(s): These were officers of a manorial court who had the job of assessing financial penalties.
Afterguard: A navy term for the sailors (and later officers) who looked after the aft sails. They were usually berthed aft as well.
Aga: A Turkish Naval Officer of some standing.
Agathologist: Someone who studies the nature of the good. (Usually a Theologist)
Ag. Lab: A common abbreviation for Agricultural Labourer. A Farm worker. You will often see this in a census return.
Agiste: Someone who took cattle to graze for a fee; An Official of the Royal Forest's who collected fees.
Agister: Looked after the ponies in the New Forest.
Agonist: A prize fighter.
Agricola: A Farmer. (Latin)
Ahenarius: A Coppersmith. (Latin)
Aide-de-camp (A.D.C.): A military officer acting as secretary and assistant to a superior officer. (French. Aide=assistant)
Air Raid Precautions (A.R.P.): This body was sponsored by the government during WWII to protect civilians from enemy action from the air by providing fire watchers, gas masks, air-raid shelters and sirens. The Royal Observer Corps was the body of generally unpaid volunteers who both plotted and watched for approaching enemy aircraft.
Alabaster(er): (1) Someone who worked with, or carved with alabaster, or white marble. (2) A cross bow man.
Alablaster: A cross bow man.
Albany Herald: A Royal messenger: later member of Lyon Court in Scotland.
Albigensian: A member of a 12th century French heretic sect who denied certain aspects of the life of Jesus Christ.
Alblastere: A cross bow man.
Alcaid: A governor or officer of justice. (Also alcayde)
Alchemist: A "Chemist" who claimed to able to make gold from base metal.
Alderman: A senior member of a town council who would have been selected by the elected members themselves rather than by popular vote, or a council member elected by voters.
Ale-Conner: Appointed by the court to test beer for quality and ensured measurements were correct. Also known as an Ale Founder, or Ale Taster.
Ale Draper: Someone who sold ale.
Ale Founder: Appointed by the court to test beer for quality and ensured measurements were correct.
Ale House Keeper: A beer seller. In the medieval period, alehouses were ordinary dwellings where the householder served home-brewed ale and beer. If lodging for travelers was provided, this might be no more than bedding on the floor of a barn. The usage of Ale House was replaced by public house in the 18th century.
Ale Taster: Appointed by the court to test beer for quality and ensured measurements were correct.
Ale Tunner: A keg filler at a brewery.
Alewife: Usually the wife of an Innkeeper, although in some cases an Alewife would run the premises herself.
Algolist: This is someone who researches into the nature of sea plants.
Alguazil: A warrant officer or sergeant.
Alienist: Someone who treated mental illness.
Allakay: A footman.
Allekay: A footman.
All Spice: A Grocer.
Allutarii: Archaic term for a shoemaker. (Latin)
Almanographer: An almanac maker.
Almirantesa: The wife of a Spanish naval admiral.
Almoner: (1) A royal officer who dispensed "poor money" on behalf of the King or Queen. (2) Someone assisting patients in hospital with non medical matters-would now be called a medical social worker. (3) Someone in charge of an Alms House.
Alnager: The official supervision of the shape and quality of manufactured wool or cloth.
Almsman: Someone who received Alms.
Alutarius: A Tanner. (Latin)
Amanuensis: (1) Someone writing on behalf of a third party, normally because they were unable to write themselves. (i.e. a blind person for example) (2) A Secretary or stenographer. (Latin)
Ambassador of Morocco: A shoemaker.
Amen Curler: A Parish Clerk.
Amber Cutter: Cut and polished amber.
Amber Diver: Literally, someone who dived to collect amber from the sea bed. In the 17th century divers used to use a wooden spade to loosen amber from the sea bed.
Ambidexter: A lawyer or member of a jury who takes a fee from both the plaintiff and defendant.
Ambler: Stable worker who "broke horses in".
Ambulancier: This is a man attached to an ambulance.
Amen Man: Someone working on behalf of, or for the Parish.
Aminadab: A disparaging name for a Quaker.
Amphitryon: An entertainer or a host.
Anabaptist: (1) A pickpocket. (2) Someone who believes that baptisms should only be made to adults, and by immersion. This follows that previously baptized children should be baptized again in adulthood.
Anaglyptographist: An engraver who would make a subject appear raised or embossed. For example on paper or on a coin.
Anagrammatist: A maker of anagrams.
Anchores: A female who lives in isolation or seclusion, especially for religious reasons. (Ancient Greek)
Anchoret: Someone who lives in isolation or seclusion, especially for religious reasons. (Ancient Greek)
Anchorite: A male who lives in isolation or seclusion, especially for religious reasons. (Ancient Greek)
Anchor Smith: An anchor maker.
Anchor Watcher: A navy term for the officer and men of the duty watch when the ship is at anchor.
Ancilla: A Female Servant. (Latin)
Ancillus: A Male Servant. (Latin)
Angle Iron Smith: A metalworker.
Angler: A pilferer, or petty thief.
Anhelator Virum: A glassblower.
Anilepman: Tenant of a plot of land usually belonging to a Manor.
Anker maker: A keg maker. (An anker held about 10 gallons)
Ankle Beater: Normally refers to a child, involved in getting the cattle to market.
Annatto Maker: A dye maker. Annatto is an orange-red dye produced from the seed of the evergreen shrub Bixa orellana.
Annealer: This is an obsolete term for someone who processes metal or glass by heating it in a furnace and then immersing it in a chemical bath.
Annuellere: A priest who sings an anniversary mass for the dead.
Annuitant: Someone living off a pension. (Sometimes from the Military or Police).
Anspessade: (1) A Pikeman. (2) A Rigman.
Antigropelos Maker: Maker of waterproof foot and leg wear.
Anvil Smith: Tool maker-specifically the maker of anvils.
Apiarian: A keeper of bees. (Latin, Apis-bee)
Apiarist: A keeper of bees.
Apiculturist: A keeper of bees.
Aplet Maker: A maker of fishing nets, in particular those used to catch herring.
Apographer: Someone who made an exact copy of a document.
Apostle: (1) A missionary of the early Christian Church. (2) One of the 12 members of the administrative council in the Mormon church.
Apothecary: A Chemist. Although this was originally a grocer who sold spices and drugs. In 1617 the London Apothecaries Company separated from the Grocers Company.
Apothecary to the Household: This is a medical position within the British Royal Household. The first recorded person in this position was Sir Francis Laking in 1901.
Apothecary to the Household at Sandringham: This is a medical position within the British Royal Household. The first recorded person in this position was Alan Reeve Manby in 1901.
Apothecary to the Household at Windsor: This is a medical position within the British Royal Household. The first recorded person in this position was William Ellison and William Fairbank in 1901 who held the position jointly.
Apparitor: (1) An officer who attended an ecclesiastical or archdeaconry court. (2) A gate keeper.
Appearand: An heir to landed property, who has already succeeded.
Apposor: Someone who worked at the Court of Exchequer. An examiner.
Appraiser: Someone who normally assessed the authenticity of goods.
Apprentice: Normally a young person working with a skilled craftsman to learn a trade.
Appreteur: Someone in the hat industry. Normally a finisher or a trimmer.
Aproneer: Grocer or shopkeeper.
Apronman: Normally means a mechanic or an engineer of some sort.
Aquarius Ewar: A water carrier.
Aqua-vitae maker: A whisky distiller.
Arbalist: A cross bow man.
Arbiter: A person appointed, or chosen, by two parties to determine the outcome of a dispute between them.
Arboriculturist: A forestry worker.
Arboriste: A Nurseryman. (French)
Arch beddle: A senior church or university officer.
Archdeacon: An ecclesiastical dignitary. The bishop's deputy.
Archidiacre: An Archdeacon.
Archiater: A senior physician often to a King or Queen.
Archieter: A maker of bowed musical instruments.
Archimage: The chief magician.
Archil Maker: A dye maker.
Archiviste: A keeper of written records. (French)
Arcularius: A Carpenter. (Latin)
Argentarius: A Banker (Latin).
Argenter: A silver plater.
Argenteur: A silver plater.
Argentier: This is a generic term for someone involved in finance. (French)
Argo(u)let: A French lighthorseman. Formed by Louis XII., and similar to the estradiots.
Argot: An archaic slang term for thieves or vagabonds.
Argousin: A Prison Warder.
Argozin: This is someone who would look after galley-slaves. (Also known as an Argnesyn)
Ark Man: A Pottery worker.
Arkwright: A craftsman in wood.
Armador: A Spanish privateer.
Armentarius: A Herdsman (Latin)
Armiger: Originally a Squire who carried a Knights armour. Someone who is entitled to bear heraldic arms.
Armour Bearer: (1) This is a ceremonial position within the Royal Household in Scotland, and dates back to 1488, where Sir Alexander Seton appears to have been the first person to hold this position. Possibly the last time the holde was “in action” was for the visit of King George V to Scotland in 1911. Also known as Armour-Bearer and Squire of His Majesty's Body. (2) A servant who carried additional weapons for commanders. An armour bearer would also finish off any enemy soldiers wounded by their master, and there are several passages in the Bible where an armour bearer is mentioned (Including Judges and Samuel).
Armour Bearer and Squire of His Majesty's Body: This is a ceremonial position within the Royal Household in Scotland, and dates back to 1488, where Sir Alexander Seton appears to have been the first person to hold this position. Possibly the last time the holder was “in action” was for the visit of King George V to Scotland in 1911. Also known as Armour-Bearer.
Armourer: (1) A weapon maker. (2) In a man-of-war, the man appointed by warrant to keep the small arms in working condition. He would often be the ship's blacksmith.
Armurier: A Gunsmith.
Army Bureau of Current Affairs (A.B.C.A): A 20th century British "propaganda machine" set up to inform British service people why they were fighting in WWII. It met with resistance from Winston Churchill, who felt it was a poor use of military time. The organization is generally regarded as a factor in the landslide Labour Party victory in the post-war general election in 1945, and was perceived to be very left wing.
Aromatarius: A grocer. (Latin)
Arpete: An apprentice.
Arquebusier: A gunsmith.
Arraier: The officer in charge of a soldier's armour and whose duty it was to ensure the soldier was duly accoutred.
Arrayer: These are people commissioned by the King, whose duty was to increase the number of troops raised by contract by reviving the ancient duty of military service. Archers and infantry were much in demand. This "conscription" was in effect from the 13th century, although from 1343, conscripts could buy their way out of serving. The Arrayer, who would usually be an experienced soldier, would go out into the country to select, clothe, and pay for a specific number of conscripts. This was effectively obsolete by the 17th century, although it was revived by King Charles I in 1642 prior to the English Civil War.
Arrimeur: A Stevedore.
Arrowsmith: An arrow maker.
Artificer: (1) A member of the military who specializes in manufacturing and repairing weapons. (2) A workman. (3) An inventor.
Artificier: A maker of fireworks.
Artisan: A skilled manual worker.
Artist: A name formerly used to a mariner who was an expert navigator.
Art Ware Maker: A specific type of pottery worker.
Ashman: A collector of refuse.
Assayer: Someone who performs chemical tests on various metals to test their authenticity.
Assay Master: Worked in an Assay Office.
Assessor: A Manorial Court Official who would have collected taxes.
Assisor: A Scottish term for a juror in a court.
Assizer: An officer who inspects weights and measures.
Astronomer Royal: The title Astronomer Royal is an honour awarded to a renowned scientist working in the field of astronomy. There are two officers, the senior being the title Astronomer Royal, which dates from 22 June 1675, and the second the post of Astronomer Royal for Scotland, which dates from 1834. The position of Astronomer Royal is nowadays largely honorary, though he remains available to advise the Sovereign on astronomical and related scientific matters. Currently the appointment is made by the Sovereign upon the advice of the Prime Minister. The post dates back to the seventeenth century, when astronomy had many practical applications in navigation. The first Astronomer Royal was the self-taught John Flamsteed who was awarded a salary of £100 a year by Charles II in 1675. In 1720 George I appointed Edmund Halley as Flamsteed's successor, establishing him as 'Our Astronomical Observator in Our Observatory at Greenwich'. The first Royal visit to the Observatory was by Queen Caroline in 1727.
Athanasian Wench: A woman of "easy virtue".
Atmologist: The science of aqueous vapours.
Attaché: A French word for someone who is often from the armed services and attached to a particular diplomatic mission as an adviser or observer. An Attaché isn't an actual diplomat.
Attendant Master: A dockyard official.
Attorney General: In England, the head law officer for the Crown.
Aubergiste: An Innkeeper. (French)
Auger Maker: A metal worker-specifically the maker of drill bits.
Aulnager: An official who inspected the quality of woolen goods, stamping them with a seal of approval.
Aurifaber: A Goldsmith.
Auriger: A Charioteer (Latin).
Aurist: Someone skilled in diseases of the ear.
Austin Friar: Members of a mendicant order formed by Pope Alexander IV in 1256. Despite Austin Friars in London, which remains today, the Augustinian Friar’s weren’t particularly prevalent in the UK. (Martin Luther was an Augustinian)
Austringer: A Goshawk keeper. (A large hawk, almost of buzzard size)
Autem Bawler: A parson. (Slang)
Autem Mort: A female beggar who would borrow someone else's children to help increase her chances of success.
Autocrat: Someone who rules by his own power. An absolute sovereign.
Auxiliary: A helper. An auxiliary nurse for example.
Avenator: An archaic term for a seller of hay or forage.
Aviculteur: A chicken or poultry farmer.
Aviculturist: A breeder of birds.
Avowry: An Advocate, or Lord of the Manor.
Avoyer: A Magistrate.
Axel Tree Maker: A skilled person making axles for wagons.
Axel Turner: Another term for an Axel Tree Maker.
Baas: The skipper of an old Dutch trading ship.
Bachelor: (1) A man of a slight status-for example, a young inexperienced knight without a following. (2) A student who has only taken a first degree.
Bachoteur: A ferryman. (French)
Back Boy: A kitchen worker.
Back House Boy: A male domestic servant, normally in the kitchen.
Backmaker: (1) A cooper. (2) A sewing machine operator in a clothing factory.
Back Overman: A mining term for a person who would carry out a pit inspection during a particular shift.
Back Tenter: Clearing away the “left over’s” from looms in the weaving industry.
Back Washer: A cleaner of wool.
Backsmann: A Baker.
Backster: A Baker.
Backwoodsman: A derisory term for a peer-normally a landowner, who chose not to attend the House of Lords.
Badge Cove: A parish pensioner.
Badge Man: A beggar who literally wore a badge to indicate the parish who gave him the authority to beg.
Badger: (1) A pauper or licensed beggar. The same as a badge man, although this later became a pedlar or a chapman. (2) A journeyman seller of food. (3) A corn dealer.
Badgy Fiddler: A junior musician in the Army.
Bag Room Boy: A young boy helping with menial tasks in the pottery industry.
Bag Stitcher: Usually women who sewed up the tops of bags for industrial usage.
Baggage Guard: A small number of troops who would look after the troop's baggage when on the march.
Bagman: A traveling salesman.
Bagniokeeper: A brothel keeper.
Bailer: A Magistrate.
Bailli: A Bailiff. (French)
Bailie: (1) A Bailiff. (2) In Scotland, a municipal officer corresponding to an English alderman.
Bailiff (1) A holder of a public office in a particular area who might be responsible for carrying out writs. (2) A mine foreman. (3) An agent of the lord of the manor who would be responsible for the estate and collecting of the rents.
Baillee: A Bailiff.
Bailo: A consul.
Bairman: A beggar.
Bait wright: A boat-builder.
Baker Maker: Involved in the pottery industry.
Bal Maiden: A female pit worker. (Usually a surface worker)
Balancer: A pit worker involved with the hauling of coal underground.
Baler: (1) A mill worker who baled up cotton or possibly wool. (2) Someone who bales hay.
Balif: A Magistrate.
Balister: A crossbowman.
Ballad Monger: A seller of sheet music.
Balladine: A female dancer.
Ballast Heaver: Someone responsible for loading ballast into empty ships.
Ballast Master: A person appointed to check a ships ballast at the point of arrival or departure.
Baller: Working with a potter.
Balloon Blower: Normally someone involved with making rubber inner tyres of bicycles etc.
Ballonier: A seller of balloons.
Balneator: A bathhouse worker.
Balneologist: Someone who studies mineral springs.
Band of Hope(r): A member of a temperance society which was founded in Yorkshire in 1847. By 1855 their head quarters were in London. All members took a pledge of total abstinence from drink. Queen Victoria was a jubilee patron. (Ironic that so many public houses are called the Queen Victoria !) Click here for a full history.
Bandfiler: A metal worker in the gun making industry.
Bandog: A bailiff, or one of his assistants.
Bandsman: (1) A musician. (2) Someone involved in the pits hauling coal-generally with ropes & pulleys.
Bandster: An occasional field worker at harvest time.
Banerman: Someone who carries an army standard or banner.
Bang Beggar: A Parish Clerk official.
Bank Manager: A mine pithead worker involved with the cages that transport workers down the mines.
Bard: Traditionally Celtic poets, minstrels or singers who usually resided in the homes of the nobility. A certain knowledge of genealogy was also required.
Bardeur: A stone carrier-often in a quarry.
Barnum: A showman. (French)
Barreur: A helmsman on a ship.
Beck: A Baker.
Becker: A Baker.
Bareman: A beggar.
Bandster: This would be someone who follows behind the reapers during a harvest, binding the sheaves.
Banker: (1) A digger of trenches. (2) A surface worker at a mine.
Banksman: A mine pithead worker involved with the cages that transport workers down the mines.
Bannerer: Someone who carries an army standard or banner.
Banneret: (1) A Knight made on the field of battle. (2) A Knight, but inferior to a baron.
Barber: (1) A navy rating who would shave the men and receive the pay of an ordinary seaman. (2) Someone who shaves beards and dresses hair. (3) A surgeon. Barbers used to extract teeth until dentists were registered in 1878. (Also barbour).
Barbersurgeon: Someone who let blood and extracted teeth as well as shaved their clients. The company of Barber-surgeons was incorporated in 1461, but by an act of 1545 barbers were reduced to more humble functions.
Barboner: A weaver.
Barbour: (1) A cutter of hair. (2) A surgeon. Barbers used to extract teeth until dentists were registered in 1878. (Also barber).
Bard: A poet or singer among the ancient Celts.
Bareman: A pauper.
Bargee: The crew of a canal boat or barge.
Bargeman: A barge worker or owner.
Barge mate: A naval officer who would command a tender bringing an officer or an important person aboard a ship.
Barilla Worker: Processing or obtaining barilla which was required for the glass and ceramics industry.
Barkeeper: (1) A Toll keeper. (2) An Inn Keeper.
Barker: (1) A leather tanner. (2) A fairground worker. (3) A seller of second hand clothes. (4) Someone employed to entice you into their shop.
Barleyman: An enforcer of court orders.
Barm Brewer: A yeast maker.
Barnman: A thresher.
Barnstormer: Traveling actors who would perform in barns of local farmers.The play would usually have a rural theme to it.
Baron: A title or rank above a baronet, but below a viscount.
Baroness-in-Waiting: This is a position within the British Royal Household who is also member of the House of Lords. There are two kinds of Lords in Waiting: political appointees by the Government of the day who serve as Government whips in the House of Lords; and non-political appointments by the Monarch, as an honour for retiring courtiers, who sit as cross-benchers. These days the responsibilities tend to be nominal, although they are occasionally required to meet visiting political and state leaders on visits to the United Kingdom.
Baronet: A title of honour under that of a baron. The lowest hereditary title in England.
Baron(y) Officer: Someone responsible for upholding the law within a certain district. (Barony)
Barrack master: The person in charge of an army barracks. This would usually be a non-commissioned officer.
Barrel builder: An old naval rating for a cooper.
Barrel filer: Involved in gun making.
Barrister: A Councillor in law who pleads at the bar of an English court.
Barrow man: (1) Someone under sentence of transportation who would be given manual work before his actual transportation. (2) A coal worker who pushed the barrows in a mine.
Bartolist: A person with a skill in civil law. The probably origin of this is the Italian jurist and doctor, Bartolo da Sassoferrato (1314-1357)
Barton(er): (1) Someone who looked after a monastery, or a farm. (2) Generally a West country term for the holder of demesne land or a manor house.
Basar: An executioner.
Basbleu: This is the same as a bluestocking-a female writer.
Basil worker: Involved with animal skins.
Basin Maker: Involved in the pottery industry.
Basket Maker: A maker of baskets. Traditionally a basket maker would use sallow or osier willow to make their baskets or hampers.
Basketman: (1) Someone who would load coal onto ships or barges. (2) A basket maker.
Bat ward: A boat keeper.
Batcher: The person who sorted the bales of different qualities and colours of flax or jute into batches ready to be prepared for spinning.
Batfowler: Someone who catches birds at night as they come in to roost.
Bath Moulder: Someone who made the moulds that cast iron baths were made from.
Bathing Machine Worker: Working with the movable changing huts used by bathers at the seaside.
Bathsmaster: Someone in charge of a swimming pool, or baths.
Bathymetrist: Someone involved in measuring the depth of seas and lakes.
Batman: An Army Officers’ servant.
Batswegen: An archaic term for navy boatswain.
Batt Maker: Involved in making mattresses.
Battledore Maker: A maker of hand held carpet beaters.
Bauer: An agricultural labourer.
Bawd: A female procuress.
Bawd Keeper: A brothel keeper.
Bawdyken: A brothel keeper.
Baxter: A Baker. Originally this meant a female baker.
Baxter boy: An assistant or apprentice to a baker.
Bayadere: A Hindu female dancer.
Bay weaver: Someone who wove felt or baize.
Beach man: An interpreter to a shipmaster who would assist in conducting trade in a foreign port.
Beach ranger: A sailor hanging about a port who have been thrown off a previous ship for bad behaviour
Beadle: (1) A parish officer charged with keeping the order-As in a Policeman. (2) a mace-bearer.
Bead(s)man: A poor man who was supported in a beadhouse, (an Almshouse) and who was often required to pray for the soul of its founder. Someone who received alms. A licensed beggar.
Bead(s)woman: A poor woman who was supported in a beadhouse, (an Almshouse) and who was often required to pray for the soul of its founder. Someone who received alms. A licensed beggar.
Beak: A justice of the peace or magistrate.
Beaker hunter: A poultry thief.
Bear leader: A traveling tutor.
Bedeau: An usher or verger.
Bedel(l): A parish officer charged with “keeping the order”. (Also known as a Beadle)
Beadle: (1) A parish officer charged with “keeping the order”. (2) In the medieval universities beadles were students chosen by instructors to act as assistants, carrying books, taking attendance, and assisting in classroom management.
Beamer: A loom worker in the mills, which involved drawing yarn through and onto the beam of a loom.
Bearer: A pit worker involved in carrying coal.
Bearer of the National Flag of Scotland: This is a position within the Great Offices of the Royal Household in Scotland. This position is believed to have been in existence since at least 1676.
Beaterman: A paper mill worker.
Beatster: A maker of fishing nets.
Beaver: Involved in the hat making industry.
Beck: A beadle.
Beddal: A church or university officer.
Beddell: A church or university officer.
Bedell: A church or university officer.
Bedder: (1) Someone who makes beds. (2) Someone who tends to farm animals during their birth.
Bedlamite: A madman.
Bedhous(e) worker: A hospital or almshouse worker.
Bedman: A church sexton.
Beefeater: (1) Literally one who attends the buffet or sideboard. A corruption of the French word buffetier. (2) Yeomen Warders: Or to give them their full title of The Yeomen Warders of Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress the Tower of London, and Members of the Sovereign's Body Guard of the Yeoman Guard Extraordinary, were formed in 1485 by Henry VII. Otherwise known as Beefeaters, these are ceremonial guardians of the Tower of London. In theory they are responsible for looking after any prisoners in the Tower and safe keeping of the crown jewels, but in reality they act as tour guides and are a tourist attraction in their own right. The Tower is no longer used as a prison, but does have the capability to do so if necessary, as the notorious Kray twins could vouch for, as they were probably the last prisoners to be kept there in 1952. Not to be confused with Yeoman of the Guard who are a distinct corps of Royal Bodyguards. All warders are retired from the Armed Forces and must be former senior NCO's with at least 22 years of service. They must also hold the Long Service and Good Conduct medal.
Beeskep maker: A maker of beehives.
Beetler: Involved in the textile industry. This process involved using a beetling machine to emboss the fabric. The cloth would be pounded with heavy weights to flatten and close up the threads, thereby producing a sheen.
Begum: A Hindu princess.
Bejan: A "freshman" at a university. (From the French, bejaune)
Belcher maker: A handkerchief maker. (Also a Billy maker)
Bell founder: This is someone who casts bells.
Belhoste: An Inn Keeper.
Bell hanger: Someone who hung or repairs bells in a Church.
Belleyetere: A bell maker.
Bellman: (1) A watchman. (2) A street collector of mail. (3) A bell ringer or town crier.
Bellow builder: Involved in piano making.
Bellower: A town crier.
Bellowfarmer. Someone who looked after the bellows of a church organ.
Belter: A bell maker.
Beltman: Someone who looked after the belt drives in machinery.
Bench jeweler: A skilled manual worker who would use a variety of jewellery skills to make or repair jewellery. This would include antique restoration, stone setting, forging and polishing.
Bencher: A senior member of an inn of court.
Benchman: (1) Someone involved in chair making. (2) A baker who prepares the dough. (3) A shoe repairer. (4) A generic term for anyone who works at a bench.
Bender: (1) A leather cutter. (2) Someone who bent wood for use in furniture.
Beneficium: This was originally someone who received a grant of land or an income for services.
Benet: An exorcist.
Benjy maker: The maker of a low crowned straw hat with a large brim.
Berean: A member of an extinct Scottish sect of the 18th century.
Bergarius. A Shepherd. (Latin)
Berger: A Shepherd. (French)
Berlin blacker: Someone who painted a black varnish on ironware products.
Berlin maker: A Berlin was a four wheeled covered carriage, with a seat behind covered with a hood.
Bernardine: See Cistercian.
Bersaglieri: An elite rifleman in the Italian army.
Bersis maker: The maker of a cannon that used to be used on old warships.
Besom maker: A broom maker.
Besswarden: Someone working for the parish involved with animal welfare.
Bettagh: An Irish serf.
Bevin Boy: These were young men chosen at random and largely conscripted to work in the mines during World War 2. Many were not released until 1948. The programme was named after the Labour Party politician Ernest Beven. Many miners were originally conscripted to the armed forces creating a severe shortage of skilled miners. Although volunteers were asked for, few volunteered. Some conscientious objectors also served in the mines. New recruits were given six weeks training before mining commenced. One side effect of Bevin Boy’s was that it wasn’t unheard of for them to be questioned by the Police regarding avoiding a call up to the military, as they were of military age and without a uniform. Amongst the Bevin Boy’s were the footballer Nat Lofthouse and the comedian Eric Morcambe.
Bey: A town governor in Turkey.
Biffin: An infantryman. (French)
Big Wig: An old navy slang for a high ranking officer.
Billardier: A maker of billiard tables. (French)
Billiard marker: A Billiard Marker keep scores made by players and indicated them on a scoring board. In public billiard halls his duties also entailed such items as allocating tables, cues, chalk, and sometimes refreshment too. He coached beginners, played with patrons and collected fees for use of the tables. In the rugby playing areas of the north of England, 'billiard marking' was usually an invented profession that rugby clubs used so their players could obtain a wage, as the sport was still amateur. When the Northern Rugby Union was formed in 1895 the original law stated that players would only be given wages to cover for genuine loss of work in order to play. Otherwise, they had to show that they had 'bona fide' employment. Billiard Marking was specifically stipulated as not being a bona fide employment, but was commonly known to be a bit of a 'joke' profession to give the impression that a professional rugby player had a real job. In Lancashire or Yorkshire there is a reasonable chance that your Billiard Marker was really a rugby player in disguise.
Billier: Involved in the spinning of cotton process.
Billiter: A bell maker.
Billy hunter: A buyer or dealer of scrap metal.
Billyman: Involved in the spinning of cotton process.
Bill poster: Someone who put up notices.
Billy maker: A handkerchief maker.
Binder: Normally someone who bound books, or hat wear.
Bineur: A farmer or farm worker.
Bird boy: A young boy employed to keep the birds off the crops on a farm. A human scarecrow.
Birlayman: An arbiter in parish disputes.
Birlieman: An arbiter in parish disputes.
Blackberry swagger: A seller of shoe laces, and tapes etc.
Blackbird catcher: A term used in slave trading days. "Blackbird's" were a cargo of slaves.
Black borderer: A maker of funeral stationary.
Black fisher: A poacher of fish. especially of salmon, off season.
Black friar: A Dominican friar, so called because of his black mantle.
Black saddler: Involved with making saddles and harnesses.
Blacking maker: A Shoe polish maker.
Bladesmith: A maker of knives, forks, and even swords.
Blaxter: Someone who bleached or coloured cloth or paper pulp.
Blazonist: Someone skilled in the art of drawing or of deciphering coats-of-arms.
Bleacher: This is someone either in the textile or the paper industry who would dye or bleach the fabric or paper.
Bleche of Souters: A group of shoemakers.
Blemmere: A plumber.
Blentonist: A water diviner.
Blindsman: A Post Office worker involved with undelivered or wrongly addressed letters.
Blink fencer: A traveling seller of spectacles.
Blockcutter: Someone who made hand-carved blocks, usually from wood, that would be used to print patterns onto textiles, paper etc.
Blocker: (1) Part of the hat making process. (2) A Quarryman. (3) Maker of blocks used for printing. (4) Part of the shoe making process involving trimming or moulding wet insoles to the shoe.
Block House Keeper: A prison worker.
Block maker: A Trader or “middle-man”.
Bloodman: Someone who used leeches to “let” blood.
Bloomer: Someone who produced iron from the iron ore.
Blowen: An ancient term for a prostitute.
Blower: (1) A glass blower. (2) Someone who worked with a Blacksmith looking after the bellows.
Blue bottle: A slang term for a policeman. Used by Shakespeare in Henry IV, Act V, Scene IV.
Bluegown: A licensed beggar. Often found in Scotland.
Bluejacket: A seaman, as opposed to a marine.
Bluemantle Pursuivant of Arms in Ordinary: This is a junior officer of arms of the College of Arms in London. The office is reputed to have been created by King Henry V to serve the Order of the Garter, but the link is on the tenuous side. It seems to go back to at least 1448.
Blue Pigeon: A navy slang for the lead hand on a ship.
Blue Pigeon Flyer: Someone who would steal the lead off a roof, whilst pretending to carry out repairs.
Blue slater: Someone who cut rough slate into roof tile shapes.
Bluestocking: A female writer.
Bluffer: An Inn Keeper.
Bluteur: A bolt maker.
Bobby: A slang term for a policeman. So called after Sir Robert Peel. (Also a Peeler)
Bolus: An apothecary.
Boarders: A navy term for sailors detailed to either defend their own ship or board an enemy vessel. Four men from each gun crew were normally allotted as boarders.
Boarding Officer: Someone who checked that ships’ documents were in order upon arrival at a port.
Boardman: Someone who went to pupils houses looking for truant children.
Board of Green Cloth: This is an obsolete position within the British Royal Household. It reputedly takes its name from the tablecloth of green baize that covered the table at which its members sat. Part of its roll was to audit the accounts of the Royal Household and made arrangements for royal travel. The Board of Green Cloth disappeared in the local government reforms of 2004.
Boardwright: A furniture maker.
Boat keeper: A navy term for one of the crew who would look after the ship or boat in the absence of others. In a small vessel he might be called a boatman.
Boatman: Someone working on a boat, normally on an inland waterway.
Boatswain: The oldest rank for an officer in shipping. In the Royal Navy this would be a commissioned officer who is responsible for the rigging of the ship and for its upkeep.
Boatswain's Mate: The assistant to the Boatswain. In the Royal Navy this would be a petty officer whose duties include repeating the orders and to help the officer of the watch. In olden days the boatswain's mate would have command of the long-boat.
Boatswain yeoman: A ship's officer who would be in charge of the crew. (Sometimes a Boatswain's Yeaman)
Bobber: (1) A metal polisher. (2) Someone who unloaded fish from the trawlers.
Bobbin turner: Someone who makes bobbins or spools out of wood for the textile industry.
Bobby: Slang term for a Policeman. (From Robert Peel)
Bodger: A chair leg maker.
Bodymaker: A maker of bodices for women.
Boer: (1) Literally, a tiller of the ground. A countryman. (2) A member of the Dutch and Huguenot population that settled in southern Africa in the late 17th century.
Bog trotter: An old navy slang for someone who lives either in Ireland or in marshy area.
Boilermaker: Someone who made the boilers, normally for ships but also for factories.
Boiler plater: Someone who made the plates used in boiler making.
Boilersmith: A Boilermaker or general metalworker.
Bombardier: A military rank used by the artillery regiments in place of corporal. (A lance bombardier is a lance corporal)
Bonapartist: A follower to the dynasty of Napoleon Bonaparte.
Bondager: A female agricultural labourer.
Bondman. (1) Someone learning a trade from a skilled worker. An apprentice. Probably unpaid. (2) A slave.
Bondsman: A person who stands surety for a bond.
Bone mould turner: Someone who made the moulds used to make buttons.
Bone picker: (1) A collector of unwanted goods who would sometimes pay a tiny amount of money for them. Also known as a bone grubber. (2) A footman.
Bonesetter: Someone often (but not always) in the medical profession who would set broken bones.
Boniface: An Inn Keeper.
Bonnet laird: A small landowner who would have worked on his own land alongside the other workers.
Bookbinder: This is the process of physically putting a book together from either folded or unfolded sheets of paper. This usually involved putting the cover on.
Book guilder: Someone who gilded books, normally with gold leaf.
Bookholder: A theatre prompter.
Bookmaker: Someone who arranged bets for others.
Bookman: Normally refers to someone in education.
Boonmaster: A road repairer, and possibly a surveyor of roads. Also known as a Waywarden.
Boor: A Dutch colonist in South Africa.
Bootbinder. Someone who attached shoe uppers to the sole.
Boot catcher: A servant in an Inn who would remove dirty footwear from visitors.
Boot clicker: This is someone who worked in the shoe making industry and cut the upper sections of a shoe from sheets of leather. Prior to the 19th century a clicker worked by hand and it was quite a skilled job due to the speed and accuracy needed. It was also quite dangerous and injuries were quite common from the sharp knife needed to cut the leather. The term clicker is believed to come from the sound the cutting of leather made. Norwich, Northampton and Mansfield were historically big shoe making areas.
Boot closer. Someone who attached shoe uppers to the sole.
Boothman: A corn merchant.
Boot laster: Someone who fits the parts of a boot or shoe to a last (a last is a wooden model of a foot on which they are made or repaired)
Boots man: The youngest officer in a regiment or regimental mess.
Boot sprigger: A shoe repairer or cobbler who would nail new soles onto shoes by using headless nails called sprigs.
Bordarius: A Cottager. (Latin)
Bordeler: A brothel keeper.
Bor(e)ler: A maker of cheap cloth.
Boroughmonger: A buyer or seller of the patronage of boroughs.
Borough reeve: The chief municipal official in some unincorporated English towns before 1835.
Borsholder: A constable.
Bosh faker: A violin player.
Bossetier: A glass blower. (French)
Botcher: (1) A tailor. (2) A cobbler.
Bote's-Carle: An old naval term for a coxswain of a boat.
Bottle boy: An assistant to a pharmacist.
Bottle holder: The "best man" at a wedding. (2) An assistant to a pugilist.
Bottler: Someone who filled bottles-often in a brewery or distillery.
Bottomer: Involved in the making of chairs and in particular the seat.
Boucher: A butcher. (French)
Boulanger: A baker.
Bounetter: A traveling fortune teller. A gipsy.
Bourder: A jester.
Bower: Someone who made bows.
Bowdler: An iron ore worker.
Bowet maker: An archer.
Bowker: Someone who bleached or coloured yarn.
Bowman: (1) A navy term for the man who pulls the bow oar. (2) An archer. (3) In Scotland, a sub-tenant who farms a tenant's cows for a season.
Bow painter: A navy term for the ships painter.
Bowyer: (1) Someone who made bows. (2) An archer. (Bowyer's formed their Livery Company in 1371)
Boxkeeper: An attendant who opens the doors of boxes at the theatre.
Boyar: An order of the old Russian aristocracy, holding the chief military and civil offices prior to the reforms of Peter the Great.
Boy in buttons: A boy servant, usually in livery.
Bozzler: A Constable.
Brabanar: Someone involved in the weaving industry.
Brabaner: Someone involved in the weaving industry.
Brabener. Someone involved in the weaving industry.
Braconnier: A poacher.
Brakeman: (1) A pit worker working with winding gear. (2) An operator of the brake on trains or trams.
Brancher: A surface worker in a mine.
Branch pilot: A pilot approved by Trinity House for a specific navigation.
Brasiater: Someone who brewed beer.
Brasiler: Someone who dyed wool or other fabrics.
Bratman: Someone who made cheap clothing-sometimes from left over material.
Brazier: A brass worker.
Bread-room Jack: An archaic naval term for a purser's steward's assistant.
Brehon: An Irish judge.
Brevet: A commission entitling an officer to take the rank above that for which he is paid.
Brewster: Someone who brewed beer.
Bricklayer's clerk: An archaic naval slang for an old crew member of limited or no use.
Brickman: A bricklayer.
Bricksetter: Someone working in a brick works arranging the bricks in the kiln.
Bridewell keeper: A jailor.
Bridgeman: Someone who collected a toll for crossing a bridge.
Brigade Major: A Staff Officer attached to a brigade who is the channel that orders are received and communicated onwards to the troops.
Brigadier: An officer commanding a brigade.
Brightsmith: A metal worker.
Brightworker: A polisher of metal. Especially on a ship.
Bringer up: The last man in a naval boarding party.
Brinjarry: A travelling dealer in grain or salt in some parts of India.
Broderer: An embroiderer.
Broider: Another name for an embroiderer.
Broom dasher: A broom seller.
Broom squire: A broom maker.
Broudinstar: (1) An embroiderer. (2) Someone who stitches patterns on to cloth or leather.
Brouster: A beer maker.
Brow girl: A female surface pit worker.
Browman: A mine pithead worker involved with the cages that transport workers down the mines.
Brownist: Someone holding the Church principles of Robert Browne (1550-1633).
Brownsmith: A worker with copper or brass.
Bruiser: A slang term for a pugilist.
Brusher: Someone who repaired mine tunnels, or increased the height of a tunnel.
Brushmaker: A maker of brushes. This would include hairbrushes, brooms and mops. The bristles were often hogs' hair and imported from Germany despite a high tax on them.
Bryologist: A branch of botany concerned with the scientific study involving observing, recording, classifying or researching bryophytes (mosses, liverworts, and hornworts).
Buccaneer: This literally means "a smoker of meat or fish", but is associated more with the privateers who traded with the "New World" against the wishes of Spain up to about 1700.
Bucheron: A woodcutter.
Bucklesmith: A maker of buckles.
Buckler: A maker of buckles or small shields.
Bucko: Navy slang for a bullying officer.
Buckram stiffner: Someone who applies paste to coarse cloth to make buckram which is used for bookbinding.
Buck washer: A washerwoman.
Bufe nabber: A dog thief. (Slang)
Buffer: A navy slang term for the senior boatswain.
Buggy driver: Driver of a one horse chaise.
Bug hunter: An upholsterer.
Bullw(h)acker: Someone who drove Oxen.
Bumboatman: Someone who operated a bumboat. A bumboat was a small boat that carried provisions, rope, tackle etc. They operated on the River Thames amongst other places in the mid 19th century. It wasn't unheard of for the owner to offer the services of "ladies" to seamen.
Bum brusher: A schoolmaster. (Slang)
Bummaree: A bummaree would purchase large amounts of fish directly from a fish market and then resell on to fishmongers for a profit. A middleman.
Bummer: Normally a deserter from the army.
Bum trapper: A sheriff's officer who arrests debtors.
Bunter: (1) A female collector of unwanted goods who would sometimes pay a tiny amount of money for them. (2) A prostitute or beggar. (or both)
Bureaucrat: A person who advocates government by bureaucracy.
Burger: A citizen or freeman of a burgh in Scotland.
Burgess: Someone who represented the parish at official functions.
Burgh clerk: A clerk involved with the administration of a burgh in Scotland.
Burgrave: The governor of a town or castle.
Burick: An archaic slang term for a prostitute.
Burineur: An engraver.
Burler: Someone who would have checked the quality of clothing materials.
Burleyman: (1) An officer appointed at a manor court who would carry out local duties. (2) A constable or tithing man.
Burmaiden: A domestic servant.
Burneman: A water carrier.
Burn ledar: A water carrier.
Burriarius: A dairyman. (Latin)
Bursar: A treasurer in Scotland.
Bursch: A German student.
Burye man: A grave digger.
Buscarle: An archaic term for the person in charge of a small herring fishing boat or cargo boat.
Buscon: A miner paid by a commission based on the amount of the ore or coal he mines. (Usually refers to American miners)
Bushel maker: A cooper.
Busheler: An apprentice or helper to a tailor.
Bushman: (1) A settler in the uncleared land of America or the Colonies. (2) A South African woodsman.
Busker: (1) A Hairdresser. (2) A singer or performer in a public house.
Bus Napper: A constable.
Bus Napper's Kerchin: A watchman.
Buss Maker: A maker of guns.
Bute pursuivant: A member of the Lyon court in Scotland. A regulator of heraldry.
Butescarli: An archaic navy term for an officer.
Butner: Someone making buttons.
Butterman: Someone who would have sold butter to the public.
Buttock: A prostitute. (Slang)
Buttocker: A mining term for someone extracting coal from the "long-wall" face.
Button guilder: Someone who would have who applied a thin layer of gold to metal buttons.
Button maker: Someone who would have made buttons. These would usually be made out of wood, bone, or metal.
Butty: Someone who supplied labour to the mines.
Buzman: A pickpocket.
Byworkman: An underground labourer.
Bylawman: An enforcer of court orders. Also a burleyman.
Byreman: Someone who raises or looks after cows. (Early 19th century)
Cabaretier: An Inn-keeper.
Cabby: The driver of a cab.
Cabinboy: A junior rating in the navy whose duty was to attend the officers. The position is now obsolete, although at the time a cabin-boy was the forerunner of a midshipman.
Cabinetmaker: A skilled carpenter who would carry out the more finer and detailed work.
Cabin-Keeper: A Dockyard worker who would look after the stores and check items in and out. He would often be required to place a Bond as security against his honesty.
Cable-Hanger: An illegal oyster catcher in the River Medway.
Cabman: A driver of a horse drawn carriage. A modern day taxi driver.
Cad: Someone who fed and watered horses at coaching inns.
Caddee: A helper.
Caddie: (1) An errand boy-Often in Scotland. (2) Historically, a boy who attends a golfer during play carrying his clubs.
Caddy Butcher: A butcher dealing in horse meat.
Cadet: A naval term for a volunteer serving at his own expense to gain experience.
Cadgear: A traveling dealer or carrier.
Cadger: (1) A beggar. (2) Someone who used to carry hawks. (3) A traveling dealer or carrier.
Cadie: A cadet.
Cadranier: A dial maker.
Caementarius: A Stonemason. (Latin)
Cafender: A carpenter.
Caffler: This is someone dealing in rags or bones.
Cainer: A maker of walking sticks.
Caird: An Irish Traveller or Gypsy.
Calcearius: A Shoemaker. (Latin)
Calceologist: Someone involved in the study of the art of shoe-making and shoes.
Calciator: A Shoemaker. (Latin)
Calciner: Someone who burnt animal bones to obtain powdered lime.
Calenderer: Someone who operated the rollers used in smoothing out cloth or paper.
Calender Operator: Someone who operated the rollers used in smoothing out cloth or paper.
Calico Printer: Someone who died or printed calico.
Caligator: A Shoemaker. (Latin)
Call Boy: A navy term for the junior rating who would repeat the orders piped by the boatswain's mate.
Caller: Someone who woke up factory workers in the mornings, so they wouldn’t oversleep.
Call girl: A "sex worker" who is generally not visible to the public, nor does she usually work in a brothel, although she may be employed by an escort agency.
Calotier: A hat or cap maker.
Calotin: (1) A Priest. (2) A Churchgoer.
Calotypist: A person who makes calotypes. A method of photography using the action of light on nitrate of silver which was devised by W. H. Fox Talbot in 1840.
Calsay maker: A road maker.
Calvanier: A hired labourer, especially at harvest time.
Calvinist: A believer in the doctrines of John Calvin (1509-1564).
Cambric weaver: Someone who operated a loom to make a specific type of lightweight plain weave cloth.
Camb(r)ist: A banker, or a foreign exchange dealer.
Cameleer: Someone who rides or drives a camel.
Camelry: Mounted troops using camels as their means of transport.
Cameranius: A Valet. (Latin)
Camister: A priest. (Slang)
Campainer: A veteran soldier.
Campaner: A bell maker usually used in churches.
Campanist: A bell ringer.
Campanologist: A bell ringer.
Campbellite: A follower of Alexander Campbell (1788-1866), the founder of the 'Disciples of Christ" sect.
Canal Porter: Someone who loaded and unloaded barges.
Canaller: A canal worker.
Canal Puddler: A canal worker who waterproofed it.
Cannaller: A canal boat worker.
Candler: Someone who made candles.
Caner: Someone who made seat coverings in cane.
Canon: An ordained minister of a pre-Reformation or Episcopal church, who would be attached to a cathedral.
Cannoner: A gunner.
Canoteur: An oarsman.
Canticle: A parish clerk.
Canting Caller: Someone who ran an auction.
Cantonnier: A road worker. (French)
Cantor: A singer in a church choir.
Canut: A weaver in silk.
Canvas climber: A navy slang for a lookout who would climb up to the "crow's nest".
Canvaser: Someone who made canvas.
Capellanus: A chaplain.
Caper Merchant: (1) A dance master. (2) A hop merchant.
Capitoril: A town councellor.
Cap(p)er: A cap maker.
Captain: In the Royal Navy, an officer junior to a Rear Admiral but senior to a Commander. In the merchant navy this is a courtesy title for the master mariner in command.
Captain of the Fleet: This would have been a temporary naval appointment and would be considered as a Flag Officer with the entitlement to a share of any prize money obtained. He would have been the adjutant-general and would wear the uniform of a Rear Admiral. His responsibilities would include maintaining good discipline in the fleet.
Captain of the head: Navy slang. Not a Captain, but an ordinary rating in the navy whose duty was to keep the toilets clean.
Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms: This is a position within the British Royal Household. Prior to 1834 they were known as the Honourable Band of Gentlemen Pensioners. Since 1945 the roll has been held by the Government Chief Whip. The first recorded person to hold this position was the Earl of Essex in 1509.
Captain of Top: This is a Royal Navy Petty Officer who is responsible to a Commander for specific parts of a ship, and for the crew allocated to it. The Royal Navy historically call Petty Officer's with responsibilities for certain parts of the ship, Captain. For example there will be a "Captain of the hold", "the forecastle" etc.
Captain of the Mast: This is where a captain, or another senior rank on a naval ship hears and acts on the cases of enlisted personnel charged with committing offenses.
Captain Podd: The master of a puppet show.
Carbineer: A soldier who is armed with a carbine-historically a mounted soldier.
Carabinier: A soldier who is armed with a carbine-historically a mounted soldier.
Caravaneer: The leader of a caravan.
Carbonarius: A Coal Miner. (Latin)
Carcinologist: Someone who studies crustaceans.
Cardinal: The highest rank of priest in pre-Reformation or Roman Catholic church, below that of the Pope.
Cardinal maker: A cloak maker.
Cardroomer: Someone who worked in a cotton or woollen mill.
Card Master: Someone in charge of the combing room in a cotton or woollen mill.
Carecarius: A Carter. (Latin)
Carl: (1) A husbandman. (2) A clown.
Carlist: A supporter of the Spanish pretender Don Carlos de Bourbon (1788-1855), the second son of King Charles IV.
C(h)arman: A driver of a horse drawn carriage. A modern day taxi driver.
Carmelite: (1) A monk or mendicant friar (also called a White Friar), or a nun belonging to the order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
Carnifex. A butcher.
Carnarius: A Butcher. (Latin)
Caroche maker: A coach or carriage maker.
Carpentarius: A Carpenter. (Latin)
Carpenter: (1) Literally, and originally, one who makes cars or carriages. (2) A skilled worker with wood.
Carpet Knight: A man who obtains a Knighthood by pretence.
Carpetman: This is someone, often in the navy, who unjustly obtains a rapid promotion.
Carreleur: A layer of tiles-usually floor tiles.
Carrick pursuivant: A member of the Lyon court in Scotland. A regulator of heraldry.
Carrion Hunter: An undertaker.
Carter: (1) A carrier of goods by horse drawn wagon. (2) A stable headman.
Cartulary: A monk who kept records in a monastery.
Carthusian: (1) A scholar of the Charterhouse School. (2) An order of monks founded by St Bruno in 1086, and noted for their strictness.
Cartonneur: A book binder.
Casuist: Someone who studies and resolves cases of conscience.
Catagman: Someone who lived in a cottage.
Catch Pole: A bailiff of some notoriety.
Cartographer: A map or chart maker.
Carvaer: A Surveyor.
Cartomancer: Someone who told fortunes using cards.
Cartwright: A workman or carpenter who makes and repairs carts and wagons.
Casatus: A Cottager. (Latin)
Case Hardener: Someone who treats steel to harden it by heat.
Case Vrow: A prostitute.
Cashmarie: A fishmonger who took the fish from the coast to the market.
Cataphract: A heavily armoured cavalry soldier.
Catchpole: A bailiff’s assistant.
Catechist : An ordained Church teacher, who teaches normally in a reformed church.
Cateran:Highland reiver or freebooter
Caterpiller: A soldier. (Slang)
Catharist: A puritan.
Cattle Jobber: A cattle seller.
Cattleman: (1) A generic term for someone who looks after cattle. (2) A Royal Navy term for someone who would look after the live cattle on a ship.
Caulker: Someone who made ships or barrels watertight by using oakum (a tarred rope) between the seams of the wood.
Caupo: An Innkeeper. (Latin)
Cauponis: An Innkeeper. (Latin)
Cavalier: (1) A horseman. (2) A partisan of King Charles I.
Ceapman: A journeyman seller or peddler.
Cellarman: Someone who looked after the alcohol in Inn’s.
Centipee: The maker of soldier's clothing.
Centurier: A belt maker.
Ceramist: Someone who shapes pottery.
Cerdo: A handworker. (Latin)
Cerdonis. A handworker. (Latin)
Cerographist: Someone skilled in writing or engraving on wax.
Certified Cook: This is a Royal Navy cook who holds a certificate from the Department of Transport or an approved cookery school. Ships of over 1000 tons should carry a certified cook.
Certified Lifeboatman: This is a Royal Navy seaman who has passed a lifeboat efficiency course.
Certified Officer: This is a Royal Navy officer issued with a certificate of competency by the Department of Transport.
Chafe wax: This was an officer under the Lord Chancellor’s Office, whose duty was to fit the wax for sealing of writs, patents, etc. issued from there. The office of chaff-wax was abolished in 1852. The name probably comes from the practice of chaufe (warming) the wax.
Chaff Cutter: An agricultural labourer who cut straw from the fields to make chaff.
Chafferer: Someone who sold chaff.
Chagrinier: A maker of shagreen.
Chairbearer: Someone who carried a sedan chair.
Chair Bodger: A journeyman chair repairer.
Chairman: Someone who carried a sedan chair.
Chair master: Someone who carried a sedan chair, or would oversee a fleet of chairs.
Chair Turner: A maker of chair legs.
Chaise Maker: A carriage or wagon maker.
Chalcographist: Someone skilled in engraving on copper or brass.
Chalmerlaine: A senior manservant.
Chaloner: A blanket maker.
Chamberlain: A senior manservant, sometimes in a Royal household. He would normally be in charge of allowing access.
Chamberlain of Scotland: Historically a collector of revenues of the Crown, at least before Scotland had a Treasurer in 1425. The position is believed to have originated as early as 1124, although has been obsolete since the 1700’s. Part of the responsibilities included the judging of all the crimes committed within burgh, agreeing the prices of provisions within burghs, and also the fees for the workmen in the Mint. He was also the supreme judge in Scotland, and his decrees could not be challenged by any other inferior judicatory.
Chamber Master: A shoemaker. A 19th century term and normally refers to a shoemaker working from home.
Chamelier: A camel driver.
Chandler: (1) A candle maker. (2) Someone who would sell groceries or provisions to ships.
Change keeper: An inn keeper.
Channel Pilot: A pilot licensed to conduct shipping in the English Channel. This could also be a Royal Navy term.
Chansonnier: A song or ode writer.
Chanty Man: A nautical term for a sea shanty singer.
Chapel(i)er: Someone who made and sometimes sold hats.
Chaperon: A male usher to a lady.
Chaplain: (1) The priest of a chapel. (2) A clergyman attached to a ship, a regiment or a public institution.
Chapman: A journeyman seller or peddler.
Charcoal Burner: Someone who made charcoal by burning wood. The art of charcoal burning is a very ancient one, practised as early as 4,000 BC in Central Africa.
Charcutier: A pork butcher. (French)
Charge des affaires: Someone who is appointed to represent a country or institution in their business matters.
Chargeman: The person in charge. Often used in mining terms.
Charley pitcher: Someone who makes a living by the thimble-and-pea deception.
Charlot: An archaic term for a public executioner.
Charron: A wheelwright.
Chartarius: Someone who works in a Paper Mill. (Latin)
Charterer: This is someone who enters into a contract with a shipowner for the hire of a vessel.
Chartist: A supporter of chartism-a movement in Great Britain for the extension of political power to the working-classes.
Chart Master: Someone who provided labour for the mines.
Charwoman: A domestic servant who would carry out menial tasks around the home such as cleaning.
Chaser: An engraver, often of silver.
Chasseur: (1) A huntsman. (2) A French light trooper. (3) A domestic servant dressed as a soldier.
Chaulier: A lime-burner.
Chaunter: A street entertainer, or a seller of ballads.
Cheapjack: A travelling salesman selling cheap household goods.
Cheminot: A worker on the railway. (French)
Cheese Monger: A dealer in cheese.
Cheirosophist: This is someone claiming to tell fortunes by the lines on the palm of the hand.
Chela: A novice Buddhist.
Chelsea Pensioner: Someone receiving an army pension and living at the Royal Hospital in Chelsea. "Out Pensioners" couldn't be accommodated, and lived elsewhere.
Chemisier: A shirt maker. (French)
Chemisier:Chevalier: A French cavalier or horseman.
Chicken Butcher: A poulterer.
Chield: An archaic term for a child.
Chieftan: The head of a clan. A leader or commander.
Chiffonier Maker: A furniture maker by trade who would make a chiffonier. (or cheffonier, as they are sometimes called) which is a type of small sideboard often made of rosewood.
Chiffonnier: A wig maker.
Chimney sweep: This is a worker who cleaned the ash and soot from chimneys. These were often young boys (and sometimes girls) as young as four from the workhouse or bought from their parents by a master sweep and trained to climb chimneys. These boys were sometimes called "climbing boys" for obvious reasons. From 1775 onwards there was increasing concern for the welfare of the boys. There were various Acts of Parliament passed including the Chimney Sweepers Act of 1788 which stated that no boy should be bound apprentice before he was eight years old. His parents consent must also be obtained, and that the master sweep must promise to provide suitable clothing and living conditions, as well as on opportunity to attend church on Sundays. An attempt to license Master Sweeps in 1788 failed. Further Acts followed in 1840, 1864 and 1875.
Chinglor: Someone who tiled roofs with wooden slats.
Chippy: A navy slang term for a carpenter.
Chippy Chap: A navy slang term for a carpenter.
Chips: A navy slang term for a carpenter.
Chirographer: Someone skilled in the art of writing.
Chirologist: Someone who communicates by using sign language.
Chirotherarus: A Glover. (Latin)
Chirurgeon: A surgeon.
Chive fencer: A street seller of cutlery.
Choap keeper: An archaic term for a shop keeper.
Chowder: A fishmonger.
Christian Pony: A chairman.
Chronographer: A chronicler, or historian.
Chrysophilite: Someone who works with, or loves gold.
Chuck Farthing: A parish clerk.
Chummy: An archaic slang term for a chimney sweep.
Churchman: A churchwarden.
Churchwarden: The proper guardian or keeper of a parish church.
Church Reeve: A churchwarden.
Cichociemni: An elite special operations Polish paratrooper. Cichociemni Spadochroniarze Armii Krajowej, to give its full name, was formed in the UK during World War II to operate covertly in occupied Poland. Out of 344 men transported to Poland, 112 were never to return.
Cimentier: A cement maker. (French)
Cinder Garbler: A female servant.
Cingarus: A Gypsy. (Latin)
Circumlocutionist: Someone who uses many unnecessary words in their speach (As in Charles Dickens, Little Dorrit)
Cirier: A wax worker.
Cistercian: A Roman Catholic religious order of enclosed monks and nuns, established in France in 1098. A branch of the Benedictine monks. They were sometimes called Bernardines, or White Monks. The emphasis of Cistercian life is on manual labour, solitude and self-sufficiency. A total of eighty-six Cistercian abbeys were founded in Britain spread over the whole of England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland. It was in Yorkshire that the Order first took hold in this country. The eight houses founded in Yorkshire between 1131 and 1150 were the seeds from which the Cistercian Order grew rapidly in the second half of the twelfth century.
Citharist: A musician who plays the cithara. (Closely resembles the guitar)
Clairvoyant: Someone alleged to have the power of seeing things not present to the senses.
Claker: A magician or conjurer.
Clap Man: A town crier.
Clasp maker: Someone who made fastenings.
Classman: An unemployed person, often a labourer.
Clavecinist: A musician who plays the clavecin. (A Harpsichord).
Claviger: (1) A domestic servant. (2) A key holder or custodian.
Clayman: Someone involved in the brick making industry.
Claythman: A cloth worker.
Clearer: An unskilled labourer who clears away the rubbish in a pit etc.
Clericus Pacis: A Clerk of the peace.
Clerk: As well as its present meaning, this often applied to a clergyman who was officially a "Clerk in Holy Orders".
Clerk Marshal: This is a position within the British Royal Household. The duties of the Clerk Marshal were to swear in the officers of the Master of the Horse's department, and to secure payment of all officers and servants. He was also responsible for submitting the accounts of the department to the Board of Green Cloth. Clerks Marshal were also appointed in the households of other members of the Royal Family as well. (Also Clerk Martial).
Clerk of the Closet: This is a position within the British Royal Household, and dates back to 1437. The principal roll is in advising the Private Secretary to the Sovereign on the names for candidates to fill vacancies in the Roll of Chaplains to the Monarch. He also presents Bishops for Homage to the Monarch, examines any theological books to be presented to the Sovereign, and preaches annually in the Chapel Royal. There is also a Deputy Clerk of the Closet.
Clerk of the Green Cloth: This is an obsolete position within the British Royal Household, and dates back to 1660. The principal roll was organizing royal journeys and assisting in the administration of the Royal Household. The clerk acted as secretary of the Board of Green Cloth.
Clerk of the House: A senior official at the House of Commons.
Clerk of the Peace: The principal legal officer of the Quarter Sessions.
Clerk to the Justices: A legally qualified person who would sit in court with lay justices to advise them on the law.
Clesp maker: Someone who made fastenings.
Clicker: (1) A printer. (2) A shoemaker involved in shaping and cutting the leather. (3) A salesman's servant.
Climbing Boy: A human chimney sweep who would climb chimneys to clean them, See also Chimney sweep.
Clod Hopper: Someone who worked a plough. A country man or peasant.
Clogger: A maker of wooden shoes.
Cloisteress: a nun.
Closer: This is a shoe-making term for the person who cuts, skives and stitches the upper part of' the shoe to ensure its strength and durability. This process would also include sewing, stiffening, lining and final shaping of the clicker's (the leather cutter) pieces around the last. (wooden template) A Closer's Boy would be an apprentice.
Cloth lapper: Someone in the textile industry who would be involved with the finishing and folding of the cloth prior to packing.
Clout(i)er: (1) Someone who made nails. (2) A cobbler.
Clown: A peasant agricultural labourer.
Clowtar: A cobbler.
Clowter: A cobbler.
Club maker: Someone who made golf clubs.
Coachmaker: A coachmaker would construct coaches, chaises, and all other types of vehicles as well. Coaches came to Europe in the 16th century and were used by women. It was not thought fit for a man to ride in a coach.
Coachman: A driver of a horse drawn carriage.
Coach Trimmer: An upholsterer or painter of coaches.
Coal Backer: Someone who loaded and unloaded coal from a barge by carrying the coal on his back.
Coal Burner: A charcoal maker.
Coal Cawer: Someone involved in transporting coal.
Coal Drawer: A mine worker involved with moving the coal carts around.
Coal Factor: The manager of a mine or pit.
Coal Grieve: The manager of a mine or pit.
Coal Heaver: A mine worker involved with moving the coal carts around-normally a surface worker.
Coal Higgler: A journeyman coal seller.
Coal Leader: A door to door coal seller.
Coal Loader: A coal miner.
Coal Master: The owner or lessee of a coalfield.
Coal Runner: A mine worker involved with moving the coal carts around.
Coal Trimmer: A ship worker who moved coal around the hold once it had been loaded.
Coal Whipper: Someone who loaded and unloaded coal from ships or barges using buckets or baskets.
Coastguard: A body of men organised to act as a guard along the coast, originally intended to prevent smuggling, but more recently involved in safety and rescue along the coast.
Coast Waiter: A coastal watchman.
Cob(b)eler: A shoemaker. Although frequently less prestigious than a shoemaker.
Cobblar: A shoemaker. Although frequently less prestigious than a shoemaker.
Cobbler: A shoemaker. Although frequently less prestigious than a shoemaker.
Cobulare: A shoemaker. Although frequently less prestigious than a shoemaker.
Cobyller: A shoemaker. Although frequently less prestigious than a shoemaker.
Cocher: A coach driver.
Cock Bawd: A male keeper of a bawdy house.
Cockney: (1) According to Chambers Entomological Dictionary of the English Language, by James Donald, 1868,- Page 76, this literally means, one brought up in Cocagne, an imaginary country of luxury and delight-indicating a pampered person. (2) Contemptuously applied to a native of the city of London. It's generally accepted that to be a "true cockney" you must have been born within the sound of the church bells at St Mary Le Bow at Cheapside. According to the legend of Dick Whittington, (circa 1354–1423) the bells could be heard as far away as Highgate, about 6 miles away. I don't think the residents of Highgate would today be amused to be called cockneys. A modern day test of the bells found that they could be heard six miles to the east, five miles to the north, three miles to the south, and four miles to the west. It's likely the bells today are far more powerful than they were in Dick Whittington's time, although there would obviously have been far less buildings to muffle the sound.
Cocus: A cook.
Cod Placer: A kiln worker in the pottery industry.
Cofferer of the Household: This is an obsolete political position within the British Royal Household, and was next in rank to the Comptroller, dating back to the 12th century. The principal roll was in paying the wages of the household servants. The holder was a member of the Board of Green Cloth and sat in the Court of the Verge as well as being a Privy Councilor. The position disappeared in 1782.
Cohen. A priest.
Coiner: A coin maker.
Coilter: A maker of cutlery.
Cold Cook: An undertaker.
Collar Maker: This another name for a harness maker.
Collector: A highwayman.
Collectioner: A pauper who is receiving relief from the parish.
Collector of the Poor: A protoype of an Overseer of the poor.
Collier: (1) Originally a charcoal seller. (2) Someone who worked in a mine. (3) A sailor on a coal ship.
Colonel: A senior commissioned army officer with the rank below that of a Brigadier, but above a Lieutenant Colonel, who would be in charge of a regiment. A Colonel would typically serve as a staff officer between field commands at battalion and brigade level.
Colonus: A tenant farmer on an imperial Roman estate.
Colour Man: Someone who made and mixed dyes for the textile industry.
Colporteur: A seller of religious books, and bibles.
Colzear: A miner, usually in Scotland.
Combmaker: (1) In the textile industry, to straighten and clean wool or cotton. (2) A maker of a comb suitable for grooming hair. This would usually have been made of horn, ivory, tortoise shell or wood, and up the early 19th century crafted by hand. The oldest known comb is from Sweden and dates back to 2,500 BC. In 1809 William Bundy a mathematical instrument-maker from Camden Town obtained a patent in Great Britain and France for a mechanical comb maker which could make a comb in about 3 minutes. In the late 19th century two American brothers, Isaiah and John Wesley Hyatt (1837-1920) were credited with developing a plastic material called celluloid using nitro-cellulose and camphor which changed comb making for ever. Celluloid was later credited to a British inventor, Alexander Parkes (1813-1890)
Commander: A naval rank below a Captain.
Commanding Officer: The senior officer aboard a ship at the time.
Commando: This a soldier or operative of an elite light infantry or special operations forces often specializing in amphibious landings, parachuting or abseiling. The history of the British Commando dates back to the beginning of the Second World War, when the Prime Minister William Churchill requested a force capable of attacking German occupied Europe. An initial force was formed in June 1940 initially drawn from volunteers from the British Army and on 23 June 1940, the first Commando raid took place in occupied France. Reaching a wartime strength of over 30 individual units and four assault brigades, the Commandos served in all theatres of war. There were 36 Commando raids targeted against France between 1940–1944, mostly small affairs involving between 10 and 25 men. After the war, most Commando units were disbanded, leaving just the Royal Marines 3 Commando Brigade. However, the present day British Royal Marine Commandos, Parachute Regiment, Special Air Service, and Special Boat Service all trace their origins to the original Commandos. The term Commando probably goes back to the Cape Colony in the 1650’s where the term was used to describe bands of militia.
Commercant: A merchant or trader.
Commister: A clergyman or chaplain.
Commondant: (1) An Irish Major. (2) An officer commanding troops in a garrison area. (3) The commander of a French ship.
Commodore: (1) A naval officer above that of a Captain but below a Rear Admiral. (2) The officer commanding a convoy. (3) A courtesy title given to the senior officer of two or more warships. (4) The senior Master of a shipping company.
Commondator: A medieval money lender.
Compositor: Someone who set the type for printing.
Compter Warden: A treasurer, or someone who looked after the finances.
Comptroller: This is a management position for someone who looks after accounting for a business or household to ensure that it maintains a certain quality or standard. A sort of accounting quality controller.
Comptroller of the Household: This is a position within the British Royal Household, and dates back to the 15th century. The Comptroller is now generally a Government Whip. Historically he had a white staff of office, and was a counterpart to Black Rod.
Comrade: Literally, a chamber mate. A companion.
Concierge: (1) A warden. (2) A doorkeeper. (3) A janitor.
Conder: Someone working with a helmsman onboard a ship whose duties would include sighting shoals of fish.
Condottiere: The leader of a mercenary group of soldiers.
Coney Catcher: A rabbit catcher.
Confinement Nurse: A women who looked after mothers and babies for a period of time after the birth.
Constable: (1) Literally, count of the stable: master of the horse. (2) A parish policeman appointed by the Vestry and confirmed by the Justices. It wasn't a particularly popular job and it wasn't unheard of for the constable to pay someone else to act on his behalf.
Constable of the Tower: This is the most senior appointment at the Tower of London. Today the role of Constable is largely a ceremonial one and mainly involves taking part in traditional ceremonies within the Tower as well as being part of the community that lives within its boundaries. The position of Constable of the Tower is one of the oldest in England, dating back to within a few years of the Norman Conquest. Each Constable is now appointed for five years. The new Constable is handed the keys as a symbol of office. On State occasions the Constable has custody of the Crown and other royal jewels. He also enjoys the privilege of direct access to the head of state. The position is now a military one, and bestowed on either a Field Marshal or a retired General officer for a period of five years. One of the most famous Constables was Arthur Wellesley, the 1st Duke of Wellington, who served between 1825 and 1852. The Resident Governor of the Tower of London and Keeper of the Jewel House is responsible for the day to day running of the Tower.
Constant Man: An agricultural labourer constantly working for the same employer.
Consul: An agent of a foreign state who resides in that country and who will promote the interests of his own country, and also that of its residents whilst visiting the country in which he is accredited.
Contadino: A farmer. (Italian)
Conteur: A story teller. (French)
Contrabandist: A smuggler.
Conveyancer: Someone who walked around carrying a " Sandwich bBoard" advertising various goods.
Coolie: An Indian or Chinese labourer in another country.
Cooper: A barrel, coop, tub or cask maker. Also a cowper.
Copeman: (1) A general dealer. (2) A seller of stolen goods. (18th century)
Coper: A dealer in horses.
Copper Plate Printer: Someone who would transfer writing, portraits, landscapes etc. from copper engravings onto paper.
Copreneur: A joint tennant.
Copwinder: Someone who would wind yarn onto cops, which fit into the shuttle, providing the weft thread for weaving.
Coracle Maker: A coracle is traditionally a small keel less boat made with a round basket work frame and covered with animal skin. They are still made today, but usually covered with canvas or calico and waterproofed with bitumen. Used largely on inland waters, sea going boats are called currachs. Coracles probably go back as far as the Bronze Age. See The Coracle Society
Cordelier: A Franciscan friar, so called because of the knotted cord worn around his waist.
Corder: A shoemaking term for the person who makes or fastens cord, braid or welt to a shoe.
Cordewan(er): A shoemaker.
Cordewanarius: A shoemaker.
Cordiner: A shoemaker.
Cordner: A shoemaker.
Cordoan: A shoemaker.
Cordon(nier): A shoemaker.
Corduan: A shoemaker.
Cordwain(er): (1) A shoemaker. (2) A worker in leather. This could include leather bottles, horse harnesses etc. This would originally involve working with cordovan leather made from goat skin.
Cordwar: A shoemaker.
Cordwayner: A shoemaker.
Cordwent: A shoemaker.
Cordyware: A shoemaker.
Core Maker: Someone who formed moulds out of sand for the casting of brass.
Cork Cutter: Someone who cuts the bark of the cork tree into cylindrical pieces to be used in casks or bottles. The cork bark would have been imported from France, Italy or Spain.
Cork Spencer Maker: Someone who made lifejackets out of cork. Cork waistcoats' were used by people learning to swim.
Cornet: The lowest commissioned military rank in the cavalry. Was abolished by the Army Reform Act in 1871. Would now be a called a 2nd Lieutenant.
Corody: Someone receiving a pension or allowance. Was originally the right of the lord to claim his free lodging from the vassal. (Also Corrody).
Corp of Wagoners: Formed in 1794 to boost deficiencies in the Army's transport requirements. It didn't last long and was disbanded by 1799 and resurfaced as the Royal Wagon Train (R.W.T.) It mainly operated in the Peninsular and Waterloo military campaigns before being disbanded in 1833 (The companion to British History, Charles Arnold-Baker, Page 1281, 2007 edition)
Corporal: (1) A military rank above a lance corporal and below that of a sergeant. (2) A mining term for an under-deputy. (3) Ships' corporals are the police on a ship of war.
Corporal of Horse: A Household Cavalry rank. The rank of sergeant does not exist in the Household Cavalry, rather the equivalent is Corporal of Horse, this also applies to any other rank with the word sergeant in.
Corrody: Someone receiving a pension or allowance. Was originally the right of the lord to claim his free lodging from the vassal. (Also Corody).
Coroner of the Queen's Household: This is a medical position within the British Royal Household, reporting to the Lord Steward of the Household and dates back to at least the 13th century. Today the principal function is to investigate the death of anyone whose body is lying "within the limits of any of the Queen's palaces; or within the limits of any other house where Her Majesty is then residing." It was normal practice to also have a deputy coroner, appointed by the coroner and the Lord Steward. As of May 2013, it’s believed this position is still in operation, but is due for abolition in the near future.
Corsair: A pirate or privateer.
Corsetier: A corset maker.
Cortege: A train of attendants.
Corveiseria: A shoemaker.
Corveisier: A shoemaker.
Corver: Someone who made the baskets used in mining.
Corvisor: A shoemaker.
Cosmogonist: Someone who speculates on the origin of the universe. (Also a Cosmographer).
Cosmographer: Someone who speculates on the origin of the universe. (Also a Cosmogonist).
Costard Monger: A dealer in fruit, particularly apples.
Costermonger: Originally a seller of apples but this evolved into a seller of fruit and vegetables. A greengrocer.
Coterie: Originally a number of peasants joining together to obtain a joint tenure of land from a lord.
Cotier: A cottager.
Cottager: An agricultural Labourer living in a cottage supplied by the land owner.
Cottar: A cottager with land who was obliged to provide labour on the estate for the lord of the manor.
Cottarius: A cottager with land who was obliged to provide labour on the estate for the lord of the manor.
Cotter: A cottager with land who was obliged to provide labour on the estate for the lord of the manor.
Coucher: A worker in a paper mill.
Counter jumper: A slang term for a draper's assistant.
Couple Beggar: An itinerant priest of low status, who performed marriages. (Up to 1754)
Counter Warden: A treasurer, or someone who looked after the finances
Country Harry: A waggoner on a farm.
Couper: A dealer in livestock, especially cattle and horses.
Coupler: A young boy who would couple or connect the wagons' in a mine.
Courage bater: A gelder.
Courtesan: Originally a court mistress. The modern use of the term is for a prostitute or mistress of a man of rank.
Court Factor: A seller of small carts or wagons.
Courtier: This is a position within the British Royal Household who would attend a member of royalty. A female courtier was called a courtesan, although in recent years a courtesan seems to have some sexual connotation.
Cousette: An apprentice dressmaker.
Cousin: Originally a kinsman, but now the son or daughter of an uncle or aunt.
Cousins German: First Cousins.
Covent Garden Nun: A prostitute.
Cow Leech. A vet.
Cowper: A barrel, coop, tub or cask maker. Also a cooper.
Cox(s)wain: The helmsman on a ship.
Crack fencer. A seller of nuts.
Cracksman: A housebreaker.
Crammer: A tutor who prepares students for examination by cramming them with facts.
Craneman: A mining term for someone who raised the buckets of coal by using a crane.
Craniologist: A doctor skilled in the study of skulls.
Craver: A beggar.
Craw Thumper: Someone of the Roman Catholic religion.
Creel(a)man: Someone who makes or sells creels (a wicker or rope basket) used in lobster and crab fishing.
Crier: (1) A town crier. (2) An auctioneer.
Criminologist: Someone who studies a branch of anthropology that deals with crime and criminals.
Crimper: (1) Someone involved with the “press gang” of sailors. (2) A broker. (3) Someone who crimps or corrugates.
Crispin: A shoemaker. (From Crispin of Soissons, the patron saint of shoemakers, who was martyred on 25th October 287).
Croaker: A beggar.
Crocker: A potter.
Crocus: A travelling "doctor".
Crofter: (1) A tenant farmer of a small piece of land. (2) Someone who bleached or dyed material in the textile industry.
Crone: Usually a disparaging term for an old woman, although it can sometimes refer to a man.
Cronicler: A historian.
Cropper: Someone who grows a crop in exchange for part of the profit or part of the crop.
Cropping Drummer: A drummer in the foot guards.
Croupier: (1) Originally someone who sits at the lower end of the table as assistant-chairman at a public dinner. (2) Someone who watches the cards and collects the money at a gaming-table.
Crowner: A coroner.
Crown Equerry: This is a position within the British Royal Household who would be the operational head of the Royal Mews of the Royal Household of the Sovereign of the United Kingdom. He is responsible for the provision of both cars and horse-drawn carriages for the King or Queen. Train travel is arranged by the Royal Travel Office, which also co-ordinates air transport. The Crown Equerry would personally accompany the Sovereign in any procession.
Crusader: A member of a military expedition under the banner of the cross, to recover the Holy Land from the Turks.
Crusher: An archaic slang term for a policeman.
Crutched friar: A memner of an order of friars so called from the sign of the cross or shape of the cross which they wore.
Cryptogamist: Someone involved in the study of flowerless plants.
Cryptologist: Someone involved in the art of secret writing, often using characters or a cipher.
Cuckold: A man whose wife had been unfaithful.
Cuirassier: A horse soldier who would have worn a defensive tunic of leather or iron, fastened with straps or buckles.
Cuisinier: A cook.
Culprit: A prisoner arrested but as yet untried.
Cupper: Someone working in pottery making cups.
Cuprifaber: A Coppersmith. (Latin)
Curate: Normally a vicar's or rector's assistant. A partly-ordained clergyman.
Curber: A thief.
Cure: A Priest. (Frech)
Curer: Normally associated with curing tobacco.
Curioso: A collector or admirer of curios.
Curmudgeon: A bad tempered person or miser.
Currarius: A car: riage builder. (Latin)
Currier: A leather tanner.
Cursitor: A clerk in a Chancery Court who drew up writs.
Custumer: A customs official.
Cushon Thumper: A parson.
Custode: A guard.
Custodes Ecclesiae: A Churchwarden.
Custodes Bonorum Ecclesiae: A Churchwarden.
Custodian: A guard.
Custodier: A guard.
Custodis: A guard. (Latin)
Custos: A guard. (Latin)
Cutlar: A cutlery maker.
Cutler: Originally a sword maker, but evolved into a knife maker or sharpener.
Curtezan: A prostitute.
Cuthbert: A clergyman. (Slang)
Cutter: A cloth cutter in a tailor's shop.
Cutterman: Operated the cutting machinery in a mine.
Cymbalist: A musician who plays a cymbal.
Cypriot: Originally a lewd woman.
Dacoit: An Indian robber.
Dagmaker: Someone who made mittens that were normally used by fishermen.
Dagswain(er): The maker of dagswain, a coarse woollen fabric made out of left over wool. (daglocks)
Dairymaid: A female employed to milk the cows and possibly turn it into butter in the dairy.
Daisy Kicker: An ostler.
Damasker: Someone who worked with damask cloth.
Dame: (1) The mistress of a house. (2) A noble lady.
Damned Soul: A clerk in a counting house. (Circa 1800)
Damsel: An unmarried girl.
Damster: A builder of a dam as used in logging.
Danseuse: A female ballet dancer.
Danter: A female worker in the textile industry.
Darbyite: A name given to the Plymouth Brethren So called from their principal founder, J. N. Darby (1800-82).
Dareman: A dairyman.
Dateler: An underground workman who would be paid by the day.
Daunsel: A squire, or a gentleman in waiting.
Dataller: A casual worker employed by the day.
Datary: An officer of the papal chancery, who dates and despatches documents, grants etc.
Dateler: A casual worker employed by the day.
Daunsel: A gentleman in waiting.
Dauphin: The name given to the eldest son of the king of France, from 1349 to 1830.
Day Labourer: A casual worker employed by the day.
Day-Maid: A dairy maid.
Day Man: (1) A generic term for a casual worker employed by the day. (2) A navy term for someone who only works during the day and doesn't take part in the night watches. For example a carpenter or sailmaker. Otherwise known as a "idler".
Daytaleman: A casual worker employed by the day.
Daywageman: A casual worker employed by the day.
Daywoman: A dairy maid.
Deacon: (1) In Episcopal churches, a member of the order of clergy under priests. In some Presbyterian churches, an officer, distinct from the elders, who attends to the secular affairs of the church. (2) In Scotland, the master of an incorporated company.
Deaconess: (1) A female servant of the Christian society in the time of the apostles. (2) In a convent, a nun who has the care of the altar. (3) One of an order of women in some Protestant churches who nurse the sick and tend the poor.
Deal Porter: A dock worker.
Dean: Someone who presided over the Chapter, and was the bishop's deputy.
Dean of the Chapel Royal: This is a position within the British Royal Household who has charge of the Chapel Royal, the ecclesiastical establishment which is part of the Royal Household and ministers to it. The position dates back to 1312. Historically since 1748 the position has been held by the Bishop of London. In reality, the chapel, its choir, and the various chapel buildings come under the auspice of the Sub-Dean, who is the Queen's residential chaplain.
Death Hunter: An undertaker.
Deathsman: An executioner.
Deck Officer: A navy term, generic in nature, but often applied to the duty officer of the deck or the watch.
Decembrist: Someone who took part in the Russian conspiracy of December 1825. (Russian army officers led about 3,000 soldiers in a protest against Nicholas I's assumption of the throne after his elder brother Constantine removed himself from the line of succession.)
Decemvir: One of ten magistrates who at one time had absolute power in ancient Rome.
Decoyman: Someone who encouraged wild fowl or animals into shooting range.
Decurio(n): A member of a Roman senate.
Deemer: A judge.
Deemster: A judge.
Defence Services Secretary: This is a position within the British Royal Household who is responsible for liaison between the Sovereign and the British Armed Forces. He is answerable to the Secretary of State for Defence and the Chief of Defence Staff for military appointments, national ceremonial events, honours, decorations, awards and medals. In more recent years the Defence Services Secretary is also the Assistant Chief of Defence Staff (Personnel).
Dem(p)ster: A judge.
Delfman: A seller of Dutch pottery from Delft.
Delver: (1) A ditch digger. (2) A quarry worker.
Demirep: A woman of dubious reputation.
Demographer: Someone who is interested the study of nations and races.
Demoiselle: A young lady.
Demonologist: Someone who study’s and catalogs demons.
Deontologist: This is the study of ethics, moral obligation, and moral commitment.
Depater: A refiner of precious metals.
Deputy: A safety Officer in a pit.
Deputy Clerk of the Closet: This is a position within the British Royal Household, with the incumbent being the Domestic Chaplain to the Sovereign of the United Kingdom. The roll has been in existence since 1677. The Deputy Clerk is the only full-time clerical member of the Ecclesiastical Household of the Monarch of the United Kingdom.
Derrick: A hangman (Circa 1600)
Derrickman: Someone who dug for oil.
Deuterogamist: This would be someone who allows a second marriage, especially a member of the of the clergy, after the death of the first wife.
Developer: This is a mining occupation where miners would work in pairs to drill a pattern of holes into the tunnel face. This would be done by drills using compressed air. The holes would then be filled with explosive and detonated. In this way the tunnel would be extended. A pair of developers could lengthen a tunnel by about eight foot a day. This technique was particularly used in the Cornish tin mines.
Devil: Normally a young boy who would do menial tasks or run errands in a printers’ workshop.
Devil Catcher: A parson.
Deviller: A machine operator in the textile industry.
Dervish: Amongst Mohammedans, a member of one of the orders of monks who profess poverty and lead an austere life.
Dexter: Someone who dyed cloth or wool.
Dey: A name given to the pasha or governor of Algiers before the French conquest.
Deyman: (1) A day labourer. (2) A dairyman.
Diacre: A Deacon.
Diadochi: Generals who became monarchs of the various kingdoms (Syria, Egypt, etc.) into which the empire of Alexander the Great split after his death.
Dialectician: Someone who studies dialects.
Digger: (1) A coal face worker. (2) A day labourer in a quarry.
Dikeman: A ditch digger.
Dipper: A pottery worker.
Discipulus: A Student (Latin)
Disher: A pottery worker who made dishes.
Dish Thrower: A pottery worker who made dishes.
Dish Turner: A woodworker who made wooden plates and bowls.
Distressed Seaman: A navy seaman who through no fault of his own is in need of assistance to look after himself or to be returned to port.
Distributer: An assistant or a deputy overseer of the poor.
Distributor: A parish clerk who catered for the religious needs of people in Almshouses or the Workhouse.
Distiller: Someone who distilled alcohol.
Ditcher: Someone who digs or cleans ditches.
Diver: (1) A pickpocket. (2) A specialized navy seaman who will work under water.
Dobhash: An interpreter.
Doctor: A navy slang for a cook.
Dockmaster: The official in charge of a dock.
Dock Walloper: A stevedore.
Doffer: A mill worker who typically took out and replaced the bobbins from the spindle.
Dog Breaker: An animal trainer.
Dog Leech: a vet.
Dog W(h)ipper: A minor church official who kept stray dogs out of church yards.
Dolly shop: (1) A marine store. (2) An inferior pawn shop—often having a black doll as signboard.
Domesman: A judge.
Domestic Affairs: A domestic servant.
Domestic: A domestic servant.
Domine: A parson.
Dominie: A schoolmaster. (In parts of the USA this is a clergyman).
Donkey Man: (1) A driver of a carriage. (2) A Royal Navy term for the rating who looks after a donkey boiler, and generally helps out in the engine room.
Doodlebugger: A water diviner. (An American term)
Dook Headman: A person working at the top of an inclined roadway in a mine.
Dook Runner: A person who sends waggons up an inclined roadway in a mine and rides with the coal.
Doorkeeper: A doorman or a guard.
Doorward Guard of Partisans: This is a ceremonial guard position within the Royal Household in Scotland, based at Holyroodhouse, and is the personal retainer of the Lord High Constable of Scotland, who was responsible for the Sovereign's safety while staying in Edinburgh.
Dopper: A member of a South African religious sect.
Dorcas: A seamstress.
Dorcas Society: These were ladies' societies for making and providing clothes for the poor.
Doreur: A gilder.
Dosser: Someone who lodges in a doss-house.
Dottler: A pottery worker.
Doubler: A worker in a cotton or woollen mill.
Dowager: A widow who holds a title or land. More recently used to describe a wealthy widow.
Dower: A widow who holds a title or land derived from her deceased husband.
Dowser: A water diviner. Can also refer to the searching for underground metals, ore, oil, or gemstones.
Doxie: A prostitute.
Doxologist: This could be a person who wrote hymns or in general gave praise to God.
Dozener: (1) A burghal official elected by householders to make representations at the court leet. This was probably having jurisdiction over twelve houses or twelve families. (2) A jury member.
Draftsman: Someone who draws or designs plans.
Dragman: A fisherman who dragged the nets along the sea bed.
Dragoman: An interpreter or guide in some eastern countries.
Dragoon: A mounted infantryman in the army, who would be trained to fight on foot as well as horseback..
Dragsman: A driver of a carriage.
Drainer: Someone who dug drains.
Dramatist: A writer of plays. A playwright.
Dramaturgist: A writer of plays. A playwright.
Draper: (1) A dealer in fabrics. (2) An ale house keeper.
Dratchell: A slut.
Drawboy: An assistant to a weaver.
Drawcansir: A braggart.
Drawer: A waggoner or someone who pushes underground tubs of coal.
Drayman: Normally a driver of a vehicle delivering kegs of beer. Typically the vehicle wouldn't have any sides.
Drazel: A slut.
Dredger: Someone who fishes with a drag-net or a dredge.
Dredgerman: Someone who collected flotsam and jetsam from a river to ultimately sell.
Drepper: A seller of cloth and thread. A draper.
Dresser: (1) An assistant to a surgeon in a hospital who might dress the wounds. (2) A man servant.
Drevill: A slave.
Drift Maker: Someone who made fishing nets.
Drillman: An agricultural labourer who planted seeds by using a seed drill.
Drivil: A slave.
Droll: A jester.
Drover: A cattle worker who drove animals to market.
Drugger: A pharmacist or retailer of medicinal drugs.
Druggist: A pharmacist or retailer of medicinal drugs.
Drug Grinder: Someone who ground drugs into a powder.
Drummer: (1) A musician. (2) A travelling salesman.
Drury Lane Vestal: A prostitute.
Dry Cooper: The maker of hogsheads and other types of casks that would be used for dry goods. Hogsheads would often be used to store sugar.
Dry Nurse: A nurse who feeds a child without using breast feeding. (Not her own child)
Dry Salter: A dealer in pickles, sauces and salted or dried meats.
Dryster: Someone who dries grain.
Dubber: (1) Someone working in the leather industry who smoothed the leather. (2) A picker of locks.
Duchess: The wife of a duke.
Duck F*ck*r: The person who has charge of the poultry aboard a ship of war.
Duffer: A seller of cheap or dubious goods.
Duke: The highest title of nobility.
Dunaker: A stealer of cows and calves.
Dungeoner: A jailer.
Dunker: A member of a sect of German-American Baptists who practise triple immersion at baptism.
Dunner: Someone employed in soliciting the payment of debts.
Dunniewassal: A gentleman of inferior rank. (Also Duniwassal)
Dust Damper: A pottery worker.
Dyer: Someone in the textile industry who would dye cloth etc.
Dykar: A wall builder.
Dyke: A disparaging term for a lesbian.
Dykeman: Someone who dug ditches or dykes.
Dyker: (1) A builder of a barrier to prevent water from escaping. (2) A stonemason. (3) A wall builder.
Dyophysite: Someone who believes in the doctrine of the coexistence of two natures, the divine and the human.
Earer: A ploughman on a farm.
Earl: A nobleman, above a viscount and below a marquis.
Earl Marshall: This person has/had an important role in the organisation of coronations and other State ceremonies, taking precedence after the Lord Great Chamberlain and before all peers of his own degree other than Royal dukes. After the death of a Sovereign, he is responsible for arrangements for the funeral and the accession and coronation of the new monarch. The office of Earl Marshal is a hereditary position occupied by the Duke of Norfolk. The current Earl Marshal is Edward William Fitzalan-Howard, 18th Duke of Norfolk.
Earth Bath Digger: A 19th Century grave digger.
Earth Stopper: This is a hunting term where someone would block up the animal's burrow before the hunt so the intended victim couldn’t escape. (As in fox hunting)
Easterling: Someone native to a country that is east of England. Specifically, a trader from the Baltic countries.
Ebionite: These are Jewish Christians who remained outside the Catholic Church.The Ebionites used only one of the Jewish Gospels, revered James the Just, and rejected Paul of Tarsus as an apostate from the Law.
Ebonist: A worker in ebony.
Ecclesiastic: A priest or a clergyman.
Ecclesiastical notary: In the early church, a secretary who recorded the proceedings of councils etc.
Eccrinologist: The branch of physiology and anatomy dealing with secretions and the secretory glands.
Edge Maker: A maker of sharp tools. Knives, etc.
Eggler: An egg or poultry dealer.
Egyptologist: Someone with an interest in Egyptian antiquitis, or Egypt in general.
Elbow Shaker: A gamer. (Gambler)
Electioner: Someone qualified for parochial office, but not actually appointed to one.
Elderman: In Scotland, a Burgh magistrate, councillor, or alderman.
Electro typer: Someone who set the type as part of the printing process.
Elegist: A writer of elegies.
Ellerman: Someone who sold oil for lamps.
Ellyman: Someone who sold oil for lamps.
Elymaker: Someone who made oil for lamps.
Emancipationist: An advocate of the emancipation of slaves.
Embateur: A Cooper or a Smith.
Embracer: A person who influences jurors by corrupt means to deliver a partial verdict. (Also an Embraceor)
Embroiderer:The art of producing ornamental patterns by means of needlework on textile fabrics.
Emir: A title given to all the supposed descendants of Mohammed through his daughter Fatima.
Emissary: Someone who is sent out on a secret mission. A spy.
Emmancheur: A handle maker.
Empresario: (1) A contractor, sometimes involving land. (2) An entrepreneur. (3) A businessman. (Spanish)
Enameller: Someone who coats or paints a surface with enamel.
Enchanter: Someone who enchants. A sorcerer or magician.
Engineman: In charge of the winding machinery in a pit.
Engine Cleaner: A cleaner of steam engines-often in a factory.
Engine Smith: A repairer of machinery.
Engine Tender: Someone who looked after a steam engine that would have been used to drive machinery-normally in a factory.
Engine Tenter: Someone in a mill who operated the machinery that stretched the cloth as part of the drying process.
English Burgundy: A porter. (Circa 1800)
Engraver: Someone who carved letters or phrases into metal, stone, wood, copper or jewellery. A tool called a graver would often be used.
Entomologist: An expert on the science which involves the study of insects.
Enumerator: A collector of census information who would have called door to door to collect the details.
Ensign: Until 1871 the lowest commissioned rank in the army infantry. (Cornet was the lowest in the Cavalry) An ensign is now called a 2nd lieutenant.
Envoy: A messenger, especially one sent to transact business with a foreign government.
Episcopal minister: A Priest in the Episcopal Church of Scotland.
Epistoler: A letter writer. (Also Epistolist)
Equerry: This was a senior attendant with responsibilities for the horses of a person of rank. More recently it’s a personal attendant, usually upon a member of a Royal Family. (French)
Eques: A Cavalry Soldier. (Latin)
Equitis: A Cavalry Soldier. (Latin)
Erite: A dissenter from the accepted religious beliefs. A non-conformist.
Eremite: A recluse or hermit. Often for religious beliefs.
Escrimeur: A Fencer.
Estafette: A mounted messenger or courier. (French)
Esquire: (1) A male of some “standing” in the parish. The title of a gentleman.(2) An attendant to a knight. (3) A title given to younger sons of noblemen.
Essoiner: A tennant who defaults on his rent, or fails to show up at court.
Estradiot: A soldier of a light cavalry corps in the Venetian service and in the service of other European countries in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The estradiots were recruited in Dalmatia, Albania, etc. They wore a semi-oriental dress, and carried javelin, bows and arrows, etc. (Also stradiot.) Not dissimilar to the French Estradiots.
Etameur: A mirror maker.
Etcher: Someone who would make designs on metal, glass, etc. by eating out the lines with an acid or by engraving it.
Eternity Box Maker: A 19th Century coffin maker.
Etonian: Someone educated at Eaton College.
Etymologist: Someone skilled in, or who writes on etymology-the investigation of the derivation of words.
Eulogist: Someone who praises or extols another.
Evolutionist: The study of military movements.
Eweherd: A shepherd.
Exarch: An ecclesiastical inspector.
Exchanger: A money changer or banker.
Exegetist: Someone who interprets the Scriptures.
Exciseman: A tax collector.
Exon: One of the four officers of the yeomen of the Royal Guard.
Expressman: A messenger or courier.
Extra Master: A now defunct Merchant Navy qualification. This used to be the highest qualification available and is now replaced by the term Master Mariner.
Extraordinary Tidesman: A customs officer who would board a ship to check the contents.
Eyer: Someone who put the holes into needles.
Faber: A skilled manual worker who makes items that may be functional or strictly decorative, including furniture, clothing, jewellery, household items, or tools. In Latin a Faber is a Craftsman.
Fabricator: A general or vague term for a person who fabricates or manufactures something.
Fabulist: Someone who invents fables.
Factor: (1) An agent, middleman or representative who sold goods for a commission. (2) An estate or farm manager.
Factory Boy: A young boy who would do menial tasks in a factory.
Facturier: An accounts clerk.
Fagetter: A seller of firewood.
Fagger: A small boy put into a house through a window to steal from it.
Faggot: A small boy put into a house through a window to steal from it.
Faisandier: A pheasant breeder.
Faker: Normally refers to a photographer’s assistant who hand coloured black and white photographs after they had been taken.
Fakir: A member of an Indian religious order of mendicants or penitents. (Also Faquir).
Falconer: Someone who breeds and trains, falcons or hawks for taking wild-fowl, or for sport.
Family Man: A thief, or someone receiving stolen goods.
Famulus: A close attendant or servant. (Latin)
Fancy Man: A prostitute’s pimp.
Fancy Woman: A prostitute.
Fanmaker: The maker of fans that were originally used for cooling or fanning away flies. They were often made out of animal skin, and often chicken skin was used. There is still a Worshipful Company of Fan Makers which was Incorporated in 1709. Queen Elizabeth I was a user of fans which increased their popularity at the time.
Fanner: Someone in a mill who separated the chaff from the grain by means of fanning or blowing it.
Fanwright: A fan mender.
Farandman: A travelling peddler or merchant.
Farinier: A flour dealer.
Farm Bailiff: (1) Someone who managed an estate or a farm. (2) Ensured a tenant farmer paid his rent in time.
Farmer: A collector of taxes who paid the Crown an agreed sum, who would also make a profit for himself in the process.
Farm Servant: A young boy or unmarried man who was hired for a year and would live at the farm
Farrier: A specialist in equine hoof care, including the trimming and balancing of horse's hooves and the placing of shoes on their hooves. A farrier combined some of the blacksmith's skills.
Farrier Corporal of Horse: When the Household Cavalry mounts an escort to the Sovereign on State occasions, a ceremonial axe with a spike is carried by a Farrier Corporal of Horse. The tradition behind this is that when a horse was wounded or injured in battle, its suffering was ended by killing it with the spike. Horses often fell and became entangled in their harnesses and had to be freed with the cut of an axe. Apparently in those olden times, if a horse had to be “put down”, its rider had to bring back a hoof, cut off with the axe, to prove to the Company Quartermaster that the horse was in fact dead to prevent fraudulent replacement. The traditional axe remains a symbol today of the Farrier’s duties.
Fator: A fortune teller.
Faulkner: (1) A Falconer. (2) A juggler.
Faunist: A person who studies or writes on animal life; a naturalist.
Fawkner: A Falconer.
Faytor: A fortune teller.
Feather Beater; Someone who cleaned feathers prior to sale.
Feather Dresser: Someone who cleaned feathers prior to sale.
Feather Driver: Someone who cleaned feathers prior to sale.
Featherman: (1) A trader in feathers. (2) More recently, “a minder”.
Feather Mason: Someone who split stone or slate by driving in a wedge to split it.
Feather Wife: A female who cleaned feathers prior to sale. Also a Feather Worker.
Feather Worker: This more general term would include general preparation such as ironing, dying or baking, as well as making them up for decorative use. The military were particularly fond of plumes and feather. The feathers used were usually ostrich, heron, chicken, swan, peacock, or goose. Feathers were also used in beds, and to make early pens.
Feeder: Someone who looked after a heard of animals.
Feller: A woodsman.
Fellow: (1) An associate. (2) Someone at a university who enjoys a fellowship. (3) A member of a scientific society.
Fellmonger: A dealer in hides or skins, particularly sheepskins, who might prepare them for tanning.
Fencible: Volunteer regiments raised for local defence during times of crisis. Militia enlisted for home service.
Fencingmaster: A teacher of fencing.
Fenianist: A member of an association of Irishmen founded in New York in 1857 for the overthrow of the English government in Ireland.
Ferrant: A shoeing smith.
Ferreter: Someone who uses a ferret to catch rabbits.
Fettler: (1) A maintenance man-for example on the railway. (2) A pottery worker who smooths unfinished pottery with a combination of knife and wet sponge to take off any rough edges.
Fieldmaster: A communal officer regulating the use of open fields.
Field Officer in Brigade Waiting: This is a position within the British Royal Household who is usually seen on State occasions. When dismounted, he carries a distinctive baton as his insignia of office. He is also in attendance at the State opening of Parliament, and is the commanding officer at the Queens birthday parade. He is appointed by the Major General and is normally the Colonel Foot Guards.
Field Reeve: A communal officer regulating the use of open fields.
Field(s)man: A communal officer regulating the use of open fields.
Figulus: A Potter. (Latin)
Filacer: An officer in the Court of Common Pleas who formerly filed original writs and made out processes on them. (Also Filazer).
Filibuster: A lawless military or piratical adventurer. (Also Fillibuster).
First Sea Lord: This is the professional head of the Royal Navy and the whole Naval Service in general. It was previously known as First Naval Lord. He also holds the title of Chief of Naval Staff, and sits on both the Defence Council and the Admiralty Board. The position dates back to 1904, but prior to that the First Navy Lord dates back to 1828, and prior to that the position of Lord High Admiral and the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty date back to the 17th century as the controlling body of the British Royal Navy. As of May 2013 the First Sea Lord is Admiral Sir George Zambellas. The position isn’t a fixed term one, and typically runs for about 4 or 5 years.
Flag captain: The captain of a ship which bears the admiral's flag. The ship would be the flagship.
Flag lieutenant: An officer in a flag-ship, corresponding to an aide-de-camp in the army.
Flag Officer: An admiral or commodore.
Flamen: A priest in ancient Rome devoted to one particular god.
Flash house: A brothel.
Flax dresser: A person who prepares flax for the spinner by the successive processes of rippling, retting, grassing, breaking, and scutching.
Flax wench: A female who spinns flax.
Fletcher: A maker of arrows.
Flottard: A naval cadet.
Flower Painter in Ordinary: This is a position within the British Royal Household. Also known as Flower Painter to the Queen. Historically there were also Principal Painter in Ordinary, Serjeant Painter and King’s Painter.
Flugelman: Someone who plays the Flugel horn-a kind of keyed bugle.
Flunkey: A slang term for a a livery servant or a footman.
Fly flapper: Someone who drives away flies by using a fly-flap.
Foeman: An enemy.
Fogger: (1) A cattle feeder. (2) A peddler. (3) A low class lawyer. (4) A hardware dealer in chains or nails.
Footpad: A highwayman or robber on foot, who would frequents public paths or roads. Today we would call them muggers.
Foot post: A messenger who travels on foot.
Forban: A pirate.
Foreman: A person appointed to preside over others. A spokesman.
Forestaller: A person who would buy up the whole stock of goods before they are brought to market, so as to sell them again at a higher price.
Forester: A person who has charge of a forest, or an inhabitant of a forest.
Forewoman: A female who oversees the employees in any shop or factory.
Forlorn hope: Soldiers selected for a particularly dangerous mission.
Foster: A forester.
Foud: A bailiff or magistrate in Orkney or Shetland.
Fowler: A sportsman who shoots or hunts wild fowl.
Franciscan: A monk belonging to the order of mendicant friars in the Roman Catholic Church founded by St Francis of Assisi.
Franklin: An old English freeholder.
Freebooter: A person who pillages and plunders, especially a pirate.
Freshman: A person with just the rudiments of knowledge, especially a university student in his first year.
Friar: A member of one of the mendicant monastic orders in the Roman Catholic Church.
Friseur: A hairdresser.
Frithgild: A union of neighbours pledged to one another for the preservation of peace.
Frocard: A Monk. (slang)
Fromager: A cheese maker. (French)
Frontiersman: Someone who has settled on the borders of a country.
Fugleman: A soldier who stands before a company at drill as an example to others.
Fuller: This is someone who cleaned clothes by whitening them. Essentially they ran a laundry.
Fungologist: A person who studies fungi.
Furnarius: A Baker. (Latin)
Furrier: A dealer in fur and fur goods.
Fusilier: Originally a soldier armed with a fusil (a light flintlock musket), but now simply a historical title borne by a few regiments of the British army.The original fusiliers in the British Army were The 7th Foot, Royal Regiment of Fuzileers raised in 1685. They subsequently became The Royal Fusiliers (City of London Regiment).