Dictionary of Traded Goods and Commodities, 1550-1820. Originally published by University of Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton, 2007.
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BLACK GINGER or WHITE GINGER in the usual form in which they were imported into this country; that is, cleaned and dried in the sun. Because most ginger arrived ready dried, it is not a term commonly found in the Dictionary Archive.
Dried ORANGEs have been noted only once in the Dictionary Archive, where they were measured by the POUND [Inventories (1740)]. Most probably it was the ORANGE PEEL that was preserved by drying rather than the whole orange, as was used in a recipe recorded by Thomas Turner for 'preserving the health of seamen' [Diaries (Turner)]. Drying would be a cheaper alternative to candying, and would preserve the peel until needed. However, a recipe given by Mrs Eales suggests that the term was sometimes applied to a fancy form of candied peel. Her instructions 'To dry Oranges in Knots' were incredibly complicated, but the result was that both the outer rind and the pith were in effect candied separately in decorative shapes [Eales (1718, facs. 1985)].
PLUMs suitable from drying prefer climates that are sunnier and drier than the British climate. At the end of the seventeenth century most came from Kent (except in a bad year), but, as John Houghton said, dried plums are 'difficult to describe, there are so many sorts'. He then listed dried plums under this name, along with PRUNELLOes, and PRUNEs among imported goods. Most, he wrote, were 'dry'd in stoves in sugar' [Houghton]. As the eighteenth century progressed, more seem to have come from abroad - they first appear in the Book of Rates for 1784. The best (from France) were called FRENCH PLUMS. Most plums that were listed in shop stocks would have been dried plums, though some may have been CANDIED.
A LOOM or TUB, either for keeping DRINK in, which seems unlikely as it apparently had no lid, or one involved in brewing; possibly a variant name for a MASH TUB or a WORT LEAD. The two examples noted in the Dictionary Archive both came from the Midlands [Inventories (1589)]; [Inventories (1602)].
Found also as 'droll' and 'drowe', but which was the more common form cannot be deduced from the small samples noted. The term that has been noted only in provincial shops and in them only during the second half of the seventeenth century. Drowles were associated with other articles of APPAREL like CAP and HOOD, so is probably some sort of HEAD DRESS at values comparable with the ALAMODE HOOD.
WORSTED druggets were plainly and loosely woven. Before pressing they resembled BAYS, but when hot pressed they acquired a smooth flannel-like finish. They were made in Norwich from the middle of the seventeenth century and some probate inventories show a flourishing industry there making druggets both in silk and worsted, see for example [Inventories (1662)]. [Inventories (1682)] shows that some druggets were made of a yarn, labelled drugget yarn, presumably specifically spun for the purpose. The list of equipment in [Inventories (1728)] is helpful in showing some of the processes available to finish this fabric. This craftsman had a number of GREY druggets, that is as they came from the weaver, a drugget plank and a drugget frame as well as a hot press and a cold press. In [Diaries (Blundell)], Nicholas Blundell broke down the costs of having made a SUIT of drugget. On the worsted yarn he expended 7s at 2s the lb, which wove up into 18 YARD of drugget at 4d the yard, while the dyeing, walking and pressing set him back another 3½d a yard. It is not clear whether in [Diaries (Blundell)], he is describing the same suit, as the figures are slightly different, but on this occasion, he estimated the cost of making drugget right through from spinning to finishing came out at 2s 3d the yard.
[Acts (1732)] suggests that some druggets were suitable only for 'Clothes only of any Mariner or Passenger, for his or her Wearing Apparel or Furniture'. Occurrences in the Dictionary Archive suggest that others were both fashionable and quite expensive. Silk druggets were valued at as much as 3s the yard, while some worsted druggets came at 2s 6d, though others were valued at less that 1s the yard. Probably most were of English manufacture as other countries were but rarely mentioned. Although most colours are represented, mention of any was unusual, perhaps because the finish, as with so many NEW DRAPERY, was deemed to be more important than the colour.
Towards the end of the seventeenth century SERGE makers in the West country added druggets to their range of products. These were woven narrow, with various grades of wool (as opposed to worsted) used for the weft. Presumably it is these that were called cloth druggets in the Dictionary Archive. By the 1740s ribbed and corded druggets had been added to the repertoire. These union druggets were relatively coarse and were no longer suitable for most clothing, though they continued to be used for breeches. Instead, they found employment as coverings and carpets. In [Diaries (Schopenhauer)] Johanna Schopenhauer, a visitor to England in the 1790s observed them in use for this purpose commenting, 'In many houses warm winter carpets are changed in the summer to cooler coverings, druggets of painted or waxed linen, made especially for the purpose and quite heavy.'
Found defined as for a BED, BIRDS EYE, BLACK, BROAD, BROWN, CINNAMON, CLOTH, COARSE, CORDED, CRAPE, DIAMOND, DRAB, FLOWERED, FRENCH, FURNITURE, GREY, HALF SILK, inset, MILLED, MIXED, OLD FASHIONED, PLAIN, RED, SAD colour, SILK, SPANISH, SPOTTED, winter, WORSTED, YELLOW
Found used to make BASE, BREECHES, COAT, CURTAIN, HANGING, SUIT, WAISTCOAT
Found measured in the shops by PIECE, YARD
The GLAZED board or PLANK used for hot-pressing TEXTILES. Its use was apparently associated with a piece of equipment called a FRAME; see for instance [Inventories (1733)] where a SHALLOON FRAME was listed. A LONDON draper involved with the pressing and packing up of TEXTILES had no less than 72 drugget planks, as well as 21 STUFF planks and 12 old CLOTH planks [Inventories (1728)].
A STICK with a terminal knob or padded head with which a DRUM is beaten. Then as now, they would usually have been used in pairs except in the combination of 'pipe and tabor' in which the PIPE is played using one hand, and the TABOR or drum beaten with the other.
DRY or DRIED - LEATHER as well a dry and dried SKIN in variety was carried up river on the River Severn for much of the period after 1660. It was presumably a way of preserving the skin for transportation, though it should not have been needed for leather. However, dried leather has been noted among the stock of tanners, including one who had 'Dry'd Leather at Liv'rp' [Inventories (1720)] as well as large quantities of 'Hydes wett', while another had 'Soale hydes' in the tan pits, 'Upper leather hydes', leather 'In the Lymes' and 'Dryed leather' [Inventories (1720)]. In these cases the dried leather seems to be called by this name to contrast it with the hides in process of tanning, which would have been wet. However, this does not explain the 'pere of black drye lethur bootes' found among the APPAREL of one wealthy Worcester tradesman [Inventories (1555)]. Possibly dry leather in this context was that not OILED, the usually way to increase softness and suppleness.