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Contraction of "administration". Letters of Administration granted by probate to empower executors to carry out the terms of a will

Burying in Woollen

To protect the wool trade an Act of Parliament during the reign of Charles II decreed that:

from and after the First day of August One thousand six hundred and seaventy eight noe Corps of any person or persons shall be buryed in any Shirt Shift Sheete or Shroud or any thing whatsoever made or mingled with Flax Hempe Silke Haire Gold or Silver or in any Stuffe or thing other then what is made of Sheeps Wooll onely or be putt into any Coffin lined or faced with any sort of Cloath or Stuffe or any other thing whatsoever that is made of any Materiall but Sheeps Wooll onely upon paine of the Forfeiture of Five pounds of lawfull Money of England to be recovered and divided as is hereafter in this Act expressed and directed. From: 'Charles II, 1677 & 1678: An Act for burying in Woollen.', Statutes of the Realm: volume 5: 1628-80 (1819), pp. 885-886. URL: II Date accessed: 22 August 2009.

To ensure compliance, clergymen were required to keep burial records and to obtain from the relatives of the deceased, or from 'other responsible persons' an affidavit that the act had been complied with. If a woollen shroud could not be afforded, the deceased was buried 'naked'.


The first burial in Desborough following the Act was that of the widow Elizabeth Haseldine, who was buried 31 Aug 1678.


the legal concept that, on marriage, a woman's legal rights were merged with those of her husband. A married woman could not own property, sign legal documents or enter into a contract, obtain an education against her husband's wishes, or keep a salary for herself. [from Wikipedia]


In dates this refers to the current month (see also: Ult.)

Joint Tenants

Where property is held by more than one person as "joint tenants" when one dies his portion goes to the other joint tenant. See also "tenants in common".


A lamb eight or nine months old, and until his first shearing, is called a heder or sheder, hog, hogget, or lamb-hog [Journal of the Royal Agricultural Society, 1851]


Matriculation: the process of becoming a member of (enrolling as a student in) a university.


Pensioner - a student at Cambridge university who paid a fixed annual fee. See also "Plebeian".


Pleb. is short for "plebeian", meaning a "commoner". A student in the university of Oxford who is not dependent on any foundation for support, but pays all university charges. The term used at Cambridge is "pensioner".


Archaic term for a week (a seven-night).


The difficulty is to determine precisely what is meant by phrases such as "On Tuesday se'nnight" when found in a newspaper report published on a Saturday. My conclusion from looking at a variety of transcriptions on the internet is that "last" or "next" would be used for the Tuesday nearest to the Saturday, whilst se'nnight would be used for the Tuesday more than a week before or after the Saturday.


A ram being one and a half to two years old.


A term used at Cambridge University for a student who received an allowance towards his college expenses by acting as a servant to others.


Sturk (or Stirk): a heifer or bullock, especially between one and two years old.

Tenants in Common

Where property is held by more than one person as "tenants in common" each holds a specified amount of the property. When one dies his portion of the property goes to his own heirs. See also "joint tenants".


Theave (pl. Theaves): a young female sheep, usually before her first lamb

Uniformity, Act of

The Act of Uniformity in 1662:
"An Act for the Uniformity of Publique Prayers and Administration of Sacraments & other Rites & Ceremonies and for establishing the Form of making ordaining and consecrating Bishops Priests and Deacons in the Church of England."

Yard Land

A certain quantity, "yard-land" land containing from 20 to 40 acres, except at Wimbledon in Surrey where it contains no more than fifteen acres. [Universal English Etymological Dictionary]


Ult., or Ultimate, in dates refers to the month previous to the current one. (See also: Inst.)


A young sow.

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