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Ag Lab: abbreviation for Agricultural Labourer commonly used on census records.
Agister: person who takes cattle to pasture for a fee, an Official of Royal Forests who collected grazing fees, or a person responsible for New Forest ponies.
Alabasterer: worked with or carved alabaster (white/pastel coloured gypsum).
Alblastere: alternate term for (or misspelling of) Arbalister, a medieval crossbowman.
Alchemist: commonly believed to be medieval Chemist who claimed to able to make gold from base metal. Alchemy was in fact a philosophical or spiritual discipline which had a practical aspect which might be considered an early form of chemistry. Sir Isaac Newton is a famous example of an alchemist.
Ale-Conner: appointed by the court-leet to examine beer for quality and checked measures to prevent fraud.
Ale House Keeper: ran an tippling house (a tavern where ale was sold).
Ale Draper: Publican or seller of ale.
Ale Founder: alternate term for an Ale-Conner who tested beer for quality and checked measures to prevent fraud.
Ale Taster: alternate term for an Ale-Conner who tested beer for quality and checked measures to prevent fraud.
Ale Tunner: filled the Ale tuns/casks at breweries. A tun held 252 gallons of ale.
Alewife: female Inn or Alehouse Keeper.
All Spice: seller of foodstuffs, i.e. a grocer.
Almanac Man: according to numerous online lists, this person was employed by the Court of Sewers as an official who monitored water levels and warned of dangerous high tides in the area of the river Trent.
Copyright: Jane Hewitt. This dictionary is authorised for use on www.familyresearcher.co.uk only.
Almoner: a royal officer who dispensed alms (money) to the poor on behalf of the King, or an official dispensing alms on behalf of a religious organisation.
Almsman: usually refers to a man who receives alms (charity), but may occasionally refer to the person who gives alms to the poor.
Alnager: an official who inspected the quality and measures of woollen goods for retail and stamped them with a seal of approval.
Amah: a wet nurse paid to suckle another woman’s child. May occasionally be seen as a generic term for a female domestic servant.
Amanuensis: a secretary or a stenographer, which is a person employed to write another’s words often because they were unable to write for themselves.
Amber Cutter: cut and polished amber (fossilised tree resin) for making into jewellery.
Ambler: worked at as stables as a groom specifically responsible for training horses to walk at an amble. The term 'amble' describes the particular gait of the horse.
This dictionary is my own work, and copyright Jane Hewitt. I sometimes find unauthorised (i.e. stolen) copies of my website content appearing on other people's websites. If you should read a group of identical glossary definitions elsewhere on the web, consider whether such sites are reputable or not.
Alchemy has traditionally been viewed as 'the history of an error', an example of mediaeval gullibility and greed, in which alchemists tried to turn lead into gold, create fabulous wealth and find the elixir of life. But alchemy has also been described as 'the mightiest secret that a man can possess', and it obsessed the likes of Isaac Newton, Robert Boyle and many of the founders of modern science.
This book explores the history of the so-called Royal Art, from its mysterious beginnings in Egypt and China, through the Hellenistic world and the early years of Islam and into mediaeval Europe.