Dictionary of Old Occupations

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Definitions of jobs Skinner - Soap Licker

Skinner: a Furrier - skinned animals for their pelts, or seller of animal skins.

Skip Maker: made mining skips, which were used to hoist ore up mine shafts to the surface.

Skipper: person in charge of a ship.

Slagger: responsible for removing slag from a furnace during the smelting process. The term slag refers to the by-product of the smelting process as impurities are separated from molten metal.

Slaper: prepared clay for a Potter. Also called a slapper.

Slasher: operated a slasher sizing machine, which applied starch to warp in order to strengthen the weave.

Slate River: made roofing slates by cutting slate blocks. Comes from the word 'rive', meaning to separate by striking.

Slater: constructed or maintained slate roofing.

Slaymaker: manufactured slays, which are weaving instruments. However, may also describe a person who manufactured wheeled carts, the oxen-driven variety formerly known as sleighs.

Slinger: winched goods onto and off transport ships.

Slopseller: a merchant who sold working clothes such as butcher's aprons etc.

Slubber: worked in the textile industry, separated combined slivers into rovings (aka slubbings) for use in the spinning process.

Slubber Doffer: worked in the textile industry, removed the empty bobbins from looms after the rovings (slubbings) had been removed.

Slubbing Frame Fitter: worked in the textile industry, operating the slubbing frame which added twist before winding slubbings onto bobbins.

Small Runner: Worked in a coke yard, responsible for pushing tubs of fuel to the coke ovens.

Smallware Maker: produced smallware, which is a term describing ribbons and the like.

Smelter: foundry worker, smelted metal ore.

Smiddy: Smith.

Smith: could refer to any type of smith, e.g. Blacksmith, Whitesmith etc. As an aside, if you are researching your family tree and looking into the Smith surname you might be interested in the theory that the Smith name does not derive from a blacksmith, but rather from a military man such as a common solider – ‘smith’ meaning ‘person who smites’. It could explain why the name ‘Smith’ is so prevalent.

Smoke Doctor: chimneysweep, or person who built chimneys.

Copyright: Jane Hewitt. This dictionary is authorised for use on www.familyresearcher.co.uk only.

Smugsmith: smuggler.

Snob: Cobbler.

Snobscat: Cobbler.

Snuffer Maker: produced candle snuffers. These may have been the small metal cup variety used to smother the flame, or a scissor-like tool which was used to trim candle wicks.

Soap Boiler: alternative name for a Soap Maker.

Soap Licker: another term for a Soap Maker.

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.

The Pot Book by Edmund de Waal and Claudia Clare

The history of ceramic art is ingrained in the history of mankind. Clay is one of the very first materials ‘invented’ by man. An essential part of our lives it has been moulded, thrown, glazed, decorated and fired for over 30,000 years in order to preserve and transport food and water. And it was on the surface of these early jugs, vases, dishes, plates, beakers and amphorae that man placed some of his first decorative markings.

In more recent times clay has been used not just by artisans and potters, but also by artists, designers and architects.

The Pot Book is the first publication to document the extraordinary range and variety of ceramic vessels of all periods, from a delicate bowl made by an unnamed artisan in China in the third millennium bc, or a jug made in eighteenth-century Dresden, to a plate made by Picasso in 1952, a ‘spade form’ made by Hans Coper or the vases of Grayson Perry today. Each entry is sequenced in alphabetical order by the name of the artist/potter, the school, or style, creating a grand tour through the very finest examples of the artform.