What Did They Do?: Ancestral Terminology

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Media: BOOK - paperback, 412 pages
Author: P. Christensen
Year: 2005
ISBN: 9781894018142
Other: 2nd ed., bibliog
Publisher: Heritage Productions

Was your ancestor a Lady from Hell? Or a Gentleman of the Horn Thumb? Or was he a Rag and Bone Man? This comprehensive dictionary is the largest of it's kind, listing the meanings of old occupations, nicknames, officials, personal attributes and relationships for family historians.

Compiled from numerous sources this compilation concentrates on English terms used between 50 and 300 years ago, though there are a few North American and Australian occupations thrown in where their use differs from the British. This timeframe is what is most useful to family historians.

What Did They Do? gives you the meanings of 9750+ occupations together with various older terms no longer in use today. Use it to find out just what an Owler is, or a Necker, Lapicide, or Hand pack miller. Did you know that a Galloon maker was one who made narrow, close woven braid for binding dresses, of gold, silver, silk or cotton.

This is an important reference work for all family historians and libraries.

4 Reviews
  • What Did they Do? Ancestral Terminology

    Posted by Lianne Clark on 20th Oct 2021

    Really enjoying reading all the different occupations. Well set out and easy to read, a great addition to my home library.

  • What Did They Do?

    Posted by Viv Downes on 26th Aug 2021

    Well resourced and have found it to be helpful.

  • What did they do? Ancestral Terminology

    Posted by Barbara Diveney on 4th Jul 2020

    I have found this book very helpful in translating terminology of what my Ancesters did for a living.

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What Did They Do?: Ancestral Terminology


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