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List of Occupations
October 23, 2003 12:01 PM   Subscribe

A List of Arcane Occupations If I had lived two hundred years ago, I might have been a PUREFINDER - someone who "went about the streets gathering dog droppings which were used for tanning leather."
posted by mert (20 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

These occupations are so specific. And you recognize a lot of occupations that exist today only as surnames--family's joined through time by their common task and station in life. Today people have multiple careers...I wonder if people then did more than one occupation.. if someone could be both a turnspit and a whig.

A lot of these occupations don't exist anymore because technology has changed. Hopefully oneday "DMV clerk" will be included in this list.
posted by mert at 12:12 PM on October 23, 2003

So I'm a grimbobber and a trampler; not too shabby, if I say so myself.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 12:22 PM on October 23, 2003

Personally, I'd rather be an ale-conner, or maybe a semi-lorer.
posted by mosch at 12:29 PM on October 23, 2003

I gotta hook me up one a' them pit brown lasses! Sweet.
posted by eyeballkid at 12:30 PM on October 23, 2003

I'd like to be retroactively employed as a slubber doffer. Just so I can use the term in daily conversation: slubber doffer, slubber doffer, slubber doffer.
posted by moonbird at 12:37 PM on October 23, 2003

"DEVIL - printer's errand boy"

I wonder what Satan has to say about that!
posted by me3dia at 12:42 PM on October 23, 2003

HACKER - maker of hoes
posted by stbalbach at 1:14 PM on October 23, 2003

We are a nation of fancy women...
posted by PenDevil at 1:16 PM on October 23, 2003

I'd like to have been a BOOKMAN and METERER, but would probably have been a BUMMER ("army deserter") and BADGER ("licensed pauper who wore a badge with the letter P on it and could only work in a defined area").
posted by languagehat at 1:24 PM on October 23, 2003

Yikes... I guess Badgers were positively, permanently Punished.
posted by marzenie99 at 1:31 PM on October 23, 2003

HONEY DIPPER - extracted raw sewage from catch basins and out-houses

HEADS(MAN) - executioner
HEADS(WOMAN) - midwife

NECESSARY WOMAN - servant responsible for emptying and cleaning chamber pots

QWYLWRYGHTE - wheelwright

STUFF WEAVER - wove stuff
posted by stbalbach at 1:36 PM on October 23, 2003

"DEVIL - printer's errand boy"

I wonder what Satan has to say about that!

The Devil you say?
posted by eyeballkid at 1:50 PM on October 23, 2003

FELL MONGER - remover of hair or wool from hides in leather making

This one's inaccurate. A "fellmonger" is someone who deals in inedible animal carcasses. Leather is just one of his concerns.
posted by Mayor Curley at 2:42 PM on October 23, 2003

can someone direct me to the HIGGLER's guild? : >
posted by amberglow at 4:35 PM on October 23, 2003

"Honey dipper" is a term still in use today, at least down heah in Alabama. The honey dipper drives the "honey wagon", a small truck equipped with a tank used for emptying septic tanks, and the guy I usually get stuck behind in traffic jams in August.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 5:35 PM on October 23, 2003

On QI on the BBC last night it was revealed that Henry VIII had a Stool Groom. This was a very highly regarded position in the King's Court because of the quality time you got to spend with the King. Unfortunately the job entailed wiping The Royal Arse...
posted by jontyjago at 12:55 AM on October 24, 2003

So where's 'cool hunter'?
posted by Slithy_Tove at 1:01 AM on October 24, 2003

I'm glad to see 'puddler' is on the list: there was a Puddler's Arms pub in the town where I grew up.
posted by misteraitch at 1:06 AM on October 24, 2003

Is it just me or does this look like a list of 80's metal band names?
posted by aaronscool at 1:39 PM on October 24, 2003

Oh and that being said I'm a Vulcan (blacksmith).
posted by aaronscool at 1:41 PM on October 24, 2003

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