Old Jobs - Trades - Professions - Occupations - Rank - Quality

Yes, believe it or not, in many historical registers and documents the column for a persons job, trade or occupation was headed "QUALITY" how's that for a bar to "social mobility" ?

The following list contains simple explanations of old trades, jobs & professions that may help family historians & genealogists to understand how their forebears earned a living.   
Accomptant Accountant
Accoucheur man who acts as a midwife
Accoucheuse midwife (female)
Administatrix female administrator
Ag Lab (abreved) agricultural labourer
Almoner giver of charity (alms) to the needy
Amanuensis secretary or assistant
Ankle Beater youth employed to assist drover to herd cattle
Aquarius ewer; waterman
Artificer maker or fixer of intricate objects; soldier mechanic who does repairs
Aurifaber goldsmith
Avenator plantifene; hay and forage merchant
Bailie bailiff
Bailiee bailiff
Banker digger of drainage ditches, dykes, flood defences etc.
Banksman gives instruction or assistance to a driver; overseer at a mine or pit (often in charge of the cage or lift)
Barker tanner
Baxter baker
Belhoste tavern keeper
Belleyetere bellfounder
Billiter bellfounder
Blacksmith one who shoes horses, forges / works metal
Bluestocking female writer
Bobber carries fish / unloads fish from ship
metal polisher
Boniface innkeeper
Borsholder officer appointed by the manor or parish, constable.
Bowyer bowmaker
Brasiler dyer
Brazier brass worker
Brewster brewer; beer maker
Brightsmith metal worker, often tin or polished iron work
Brownsmith copper or brass smith
Burgonmaster mayor
Burl cup-bearer
Burneman carrier of barm or waters for brewers
Burnisher metal polisher
Campaner bell maker
Cancellarius chancellor
Cardmaker maker of cards (instruments for combing wool)
Carner granary keeper
Carnifex butcher
Carpentarius carpenter
Carter maker or driver carts
Caulker filler of cracks (in ships or windows) to make them watertight
Chaisemaker carriage maker
Chaloner dealer in shalloon (a material made in Chalons)
Chandler maker or seller of candles; retailer of groceries; dealer or trader
Chapman merchant
Chesterman guard
Chiffonier wigmaker
Chirugion apothecary or surgeon
Cissor tailor
Clark Clerk
Clarke cleric or scribe
Clericus clerk
Clerk clergyman, cleric
Clicker salesman's assistant who would drum up custom, print worker who would set up the press for the compositor; one who makes eyelet holes in boots using a machine which clicked.
Cobbler shoe maker/repairer
Cocus cook
Cohen priest
Collier coalminer
Colporteur peddler of books
Combere woolcomber
Conveyor grantor or seller
Cooper maker or repairer of vessels made of staves & hoops ie. barrels, casks and tubs.
Coppice keeper one who takes care of small wood
Cordewanarius shoemaker, originally any leather worker using leather from Cordiva (Spain)
Cordwainer shoemaker, originally any leather worker using Cordovan leather
Corvisor shoemaker, originally any leather worker using Cordovan leather
Costermonger peddler of fruits and vegetables
Cotiler cutler
Cozier tailor
Crayman driver of a cart carrying heavy loads
Crocker potter; maker of crockery
Crowner coroner
Cuhreur currier
Culler gelder of male animals
Cuper cooper
Currrier tanner of leather; user of curry comb on horses
Cutler one who makes or sells knives etc.
Dareman dairyman
Daunsel gentleman in waiting; groom; squire
Delver one who digs ditches
Devil printer's errand boy
Dexter dyer
Diviner/Dowser one who finds water (or other substances) under the ground
Docker stevedor; dock worker who loads and unloads cargo
Dowser finder of water (or other items) using dowsing rods or witching stick
Draper dealer in cloth and dry goods
Drayman "driver of a dray: a long strong cart without fixed sides, for carrying heavy loads" (later a brewery delivery team)
Dresser surgeon's assistant in a hospital
Drover driver of animals to market; dealer in cattle
Drummer traveling salesman
Dubbere cloth dubber ie. one who raises the nap of cloth
Dudder probably a maker of coarse cloaks
Duffer peddler
Dyer one who dyes cloth
Dysshere possibly a ditcher, or in some cases a disher
Ellerman dealer / seller of lampoil
Elymaker oilmaker
Enumerator census taker
Executrix female executor
F.S. female servant; UK 1841 census etc
Faber smith
Factor agent, commission merchant; one who acts or transacts business for another; scottish steward or bailiff of an estate
Falkner keeper / trainer of falcons
Farrier horse doctor, one in charge of horses; blacksmith;
makes / fits horseshoes
Faulkner Falconer
Fell Monger one who removes hair or wool from hides in preparation for leather making
Fence Viewer person who inspects farmer's fences
Feroner ironmonger
Ferur / Ferator farrier or blacksmith
Fisher / Fishdryver victualler
Flasher glass maker (specialist)
Flax Dresser one who works with flax fibers
Fleshewer / Flesher butcher
Fletcher maker of bows and arrows; arrowmaker
Forestarius forester
Framar farmer
Frereman servant of the Friars
Fuller fuller of cloth; shrinker and thickener of woolen cloth by washing, heating and pressing; a felter;one who trampled cloth, see also walker, cleaner and thickener of cloth;
Furber / Furbour furbisher of armour
Furner baker
Gaoler jailer
Garcifer / Garcio groom; attendant
Gatherer glassworker who gathered molten glass from the furnace on the end of a blowpipe (blowiron) for the glass blower
Glassewryght glasswright; maker and mender of glassware
Glazier fitter or repairer of windows
Glover dealer or maker of gloves
Gobar jobber
Guilderer maker of gold or silver coins
Gynour engineer
Hacker hoe maker
Hamberghmaker / Hamberow horse collar maker
Hansard weapon maker or seller
Harper musician
Hatcheler one who combed out or "carded" flax
Hawker peddler
Haymonger dealer in hay
Hayward keeper of fences
Headborough constable
Hedger one who trims and tends hedgerows
Hetheleder provider of heather for fuel
Higgler itinerant peddler
Hillard / Hiller one who covers houses with slate; tiler
Hillier roof tiler, slater
Hind farm laborer
Hooker reaper
Hooper maker of hoops for casks, barrels, tubs etc.
Horsler hostler or ostler (stableman or groom), horse servant at an inn
Hosteler innkeeper
Hostler a groom who took care of horses, often at an inn
Horse Marine man used to drag, manhandle barges where horses couldn't work
Huckster seller of small articles/wares
Hurdlemaker maker of Hazel hurdles (for fences, sheepfolds, barriers etc)
Husbandman a tenant farmer; (not a land ower) animal husbandry
Indentured servant one who has committed to working for someone
Ironmonger dealer in iron goods
Jagger fish peddler
Jakes Farmer one who emptied cesspits or privvies
Jorman journeyman
Journeyman craftsman who had served his apprenticeship to a master for a fixed number of years; often works on a day to day basis
Joyner / Joiner joiner; skilled carpenter
Keeler bargeman
Keller salt keeper
Kellogg slaughter man
Kempster wool comber
Knocker-Up person employed to wake up factory / mill workers by knocking on their bedroom windows with a long pole
Lardner keeper of the cupboard or store
Latouner worker in latten (a metal resembling brass)
Lavender washer woman
Lederer leather maker
Leech physician
Limeburner maker of lime
Limner draughtsman or artist
Lokeer locksmith
Longshoreman "stevedor, docker"
Lorimer / lormer bridlemaker
Lormer maker of horse gear
M.S. male servant; UK 1841 census etc
Macon / Macun / Marson mason
Malender farmer
Malster brewer of malted beverages (beer)
Manciple a steward
Marescallus marshall
Marshall horse servant or groom
Mason stone carver, cutter
Mayer physician
Medicus leech; doctor
Mercator merchant
Millow miller
Millwright one who designs or builds mills
Mintmaster issuer of local currency [mintner?]
Molendinarius / Molitor / Muner miller
Monger "seller (of goods ie. ale, fish, fruit)"
Muleskinner teamster
Neatherder cow herd
Necessary Woman servant to empty chamber pots & clean privvies;  female private personal attendant
Nedder needle-maker
Nettir knitter
Oilman seller of lamp oil (similar Ellerman)
Ordinary innkeeper; keeper of a fixed price Inn
Osler bird-catcher
Osnard herder of oxen
Outrider mounted attendant riding before or behind a carriage
Packman itinerant peddler
Palmer a pilgrim; one who had been, or pretended to have been, to the Holy Land
Paneler saddler
Pannarius clothier and draper
Pardoner one licensed to sell Papal Indulgences
Parochus rector, pastor
Patton / Patten Maker a maker of a clog shod with an iron ring; maker of iron-rimmed pattens for footware. A clog was also a wooden pole with a pattern cut into the end
Peever pepper-seller
Pelliparius/ Peltarius skinner
Peregrinator itinerant wanderer
Peruker / Perukmaker wig maker
Pettifogger shyster; lawyer
Pinder keeper of the pound or pinfold
Piscarius fishmonger
Piscator fisherman
Pistor miller or baker
Plantifene hay and forage merchant - avenator
Ploughwright one who makes or repairs ploughs
Plumber one who applied sheet lead for roofing and set lead frames for plain or stained glass windows
Porcher pig-keeper
Porter gate-keeper or door-keeper
Poulterer dealer in poultry
Puddler wrought iron worker
Pynner pin-maker
Quarrier quarry worker
Quarryman stonecutter
Quister bleacher
Revenuer officer enforcing the law against illegal manufacturing of whisky. Exciseman
Rigger hoist tackler worker
Ripper fish monger
Roper ropemaker; maker of rope or nets
Rotarius wheelwright
Rower maker of (small) wagon wheels
Saddler maker and repairer of saddles and bridles
Safernman grower of saffron
Samitere/Samite maker of a type of heavy silk
Savant servant
Sawbones physician
Sawyer sawer of wood; carpenter
Scabbler person who uses a pick (scabbler) to trim the sides of a tunnel
Scribbler minor author; person who scribbles wool (coarse first carding)
Schrimpschonger artist who carves / etches in bone, ivory, or wood (scrimshaw)
Scrivener scribe or clerk; notary public; professional or public copyist or writer
Scrutiner election judge
Servus servant
Sevier sieve-maker
Sewer tailor or shoemaker
Sharman / Sherman / Shearman one who raised the surface of wollen cloth and then sheared it to a smooth surface; cutter of woolen cloth
Sheather see vaginarius
Shepster female, cutter-out of dressmaking material ;  
male, sheep shearer (some areas only)
Shether see vaginarius
Shrieve sheriff
Sizer one who applies size to textiles
Slater roofer; tiler
Slatter slater (same as hillard)
Slaymaker / Sleymaker maker of slays or reeds (instruments to part threads in weaving) for looms
Slopseller seller of ready-made clothes
Snobscat/Snob shoe repairer; cobbler
Soper soapmaker
Sorter tailor
Souter shoemaker; cobbler (mainly north england - scotland)
Soyor sawyer
Spar Maker maker of Hazel spars for holding thatch in place (sparmaker)
Spicer grocer
Spinster spinner (female)
Spittleman hospital attendant
Spurrer / Spurrier spurmaker
Squarewright carpenter, specifically a furniture maker
Squire country gentleman; farm owner; justice of peace
Stabler ostler
Stokiner maker or weaver of stockings, hosiery
Stuff Gown / Gownsman junior barrister
Sugarer dealer in or seller of sugar
Supercargo officer on merchant ship who is in charge of cargo and the commercial concerns of the ship
Sutler one who supplies an army with provisions
Tabernarius taverner; innkeeper
Tackler overseer of powerloom weavers
Tannator tanner; curer of animal hide into leather
Tanner person who tans (cures) animal hides into leather
Taper candlewick maker or seller
Tapley one who puts the tap in an ale cask
Tapster one who served ale & beer in a public house
Tasker reaper
Tawer one who taws (makes hide into leather without the use of tanning)
Teinter dyer
Textor weaver
Thatcher roofer (using thatch)
Thirdbororough tithing man or deputy constable
Tide Waiter customs inspector
Tinctor dyer
Tinker an itinerant mender and seller of kettles, tin pots and pans
Tipstaff policeman
Todd fox hunter
Tonsor barber
Travers toll bridge collector
Tripper dancer
Tucker cleaner of cloth goods
Turner turner of wood (using a lathe) into spindles
Upholder upholsterer; also a cheapjack and seller of secondhand goods
Vaginarius sheather; scabbard maker
Vatman skilled paper mill worker who lifts paper pulp from the vat and moulds it into sheets
Venator / Venur huntsman
Verderer a Borsholder, Officer administrating Forests, Forest Constable.
Victualer tavern keeper, or one who provides an army, navy, or goods
Vitner  /  Vintner wine merchant
Vulcan blacksmith
Wainwright wagon maker
Waiter customs officer or tide waiter; one who waited on the tide to collect duty on goods brought in. servant in hostelry
Walker fuller; cloth trampler or cleaner (tucker; in some locations of U.K.)
Waterman boatman who plies for hire
Webber weaver; loom operator
Webster operator of looms
Wharfinger owner of a wharf
Wheelwright builder / repairer of wagon wheels, carriages etc.
Whitcher maker of chests
Whitesmith tinsmith; worker of iron who finishes or polishes the work
Whitewing street sweeper
Whitster bleacher of cloth
Whittawer one who tans skin into white leather
Wright workman, especially a construction worker ie. wheelwright
Yearman a worker hired by the year

farmer who owns his own land; freeholder
servant in a noble household
junior naval ranking, assisting or responsible for a particular task, eg. storekeeping or "yeoman of signals"