Dolberline - Double gilt

Dictionary of Traded Goods and Commodities 1550-1820. Originally published by University of Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton, 2007.

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Nancy Cox, Karin Dannehl, 'Dolberline - Double gilt', in Dictionary of Traded Goods and Commodities 1550-1820( Wolverhampton, 2007), British History Online [accessed 19 July 2024].

Nancy Cox, Karin Dannehl, 'Dolberline - Double gilt', in Dictionary of Traded Goods and Commodities 1550-1820( Wolverhampton, 2007), British History Online, accessed July 19, 2024,

Nancy Cox, Karin Dannehl. "Dolberline - Double gilt". Dictionary of Traded Goods and Commodities 1550-1820. (Wolverhampton, 2007), , British History Online. Web. 19 July 2024.

In this section


From the context of the only entry in the Dictionary Archive, it was a form of LACE made of WOOL originating in FLANDERS and used in the 1670s for funereal dress [Patents (1678)]. Presumably this patent was intended to develop home manufacture of woollen lace to comply with the act requiring burial in woollens [Acts (1676)]. The use of this type of HABERDASHERY to dress the corpse became fashionable early in the eighteenth century and was described by a foreign visitor who recounted how a dead man was 'dressed in a long flannel shirt edged with lace, ... all sewn with wool, in accordance with an Act of Parliament, which forbids the use of linen or cotton for the purpose' [Litten (1991, pb 1992)].

Not found in the OED

Sources: Patents.
References: Litten (1991, pb 1992).

Dole eel

[dole eele]

Some variety of EEL, that the Customs officials wanted to include in the Rates. They were linked with KINE EEL and SHAFT EEL. This may be because the names were used synonymously, or because all three were rated together below the rate for SPRUCE EEL and STUB EEL but above that for PIMPER EEL [Rates (1582)]; [Rates (1660)]. They were not rated in 1784, perhaps because the importation of all but QUICK EEL had been prohibited in 1666 [Acts (1666)], which suggests that dole eels were already processed to some extent, perhaps DRIED, SMOKED or packed in BRINE.

OED Earliest date of use: 1550

Found rated by the BARREL, LAST

See also EEL.
Sources: Rates.


A plaything made and shaped in the image of a human being (commonly of a child), and usually referred to in the early-modern period as a BABY, though 'doll' is occasionally found, for example as 'Hoop and Round Rattle Dolls' and 'Swivel Dolls' [Tradecards (1794)]. In the same source doll was used as a descriptor for various items that could have been playthings; 'Dolls Shoes', 'Dolls Hats, Dolls Fans', 'Dolls Corals' and 'Small and Large Dolls Watches'. The two other examples in the Dictionary Archive are more contentious and may be intended as promotional items for ladies apparel; '14 Dolls Damask Pett's at 11s' [Inventories (1697)] and 'Two Dolls and Ten Pictures' [Inventories (1748)].

OED earliest date of use: a1700

Found described as swivel

Sources: Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late), Tradecards.

Doll reticule

From the one example in the Dictionary Archive [Tradecards (18c.)], this would appear to have been an article related to fashion and dress rather than a CHILDRENS TOY, although one retailer had a variety of accessories apparently for use by children with their DOLLs [Tradecards (1794)]. The OED gives 'Palm of the hand' as a sixteenth-century meaning of DOLL, thence possibly a hand held bag or RETICULE. A child's toy reticule would be unlikely in the context, especially since 'doll' in this sense is a term only rarely noted in the Dictionary Archive. The OED gives the early 1800s as the earliest date for the term 'reticule'.

Not found as such in the OED

Found described as FASHIONABLE

Sources: Tradecards.



The English name for either the German 'thaller', a large silver coin of variable value current from the sixteenth century, or the 'peso' or 'pieces of eight' formerly current in Spain and the Spanish colonies, but also in the British colonies of northern America. Changing foreign coins into acceptable ones for use in the country was a major problem; hence advertisements like that offering to give 'The full Value for light Guineas, Ports, Dollars, and all Sorts of English and Foreign Coins' [Newspapers (1790)].

OED earliest date of use: 1553 as the Thaller; 1581 as the Peso

Found described as GOLD

Sources: Inventories (mid-period), Newspapers.


Apart from the marine mammal of this name, 'dolphin' was apparently a type of CHEESE [Tradecards (1800)], and possibly then as now a local variation on one of FRANCE's specialist cheeses, Maroilles. This has been made since the twelfth century, though today it is the product of a single farm. It is a soft and moist cheese with a tangy flavour and quite a strong smell. Le Dauphin is a dolphin-shaped Maroilles with added herbs and spices [Lucas (1999-2000)].

Sources: Tradecards.
References: Lucas (1999-2000).

Door band

[doore bande]

A HINGE, one arm of which is a long band of iron to spread the weight across the door. The OED suggests it may also have been applied to the bolt or fastening of the door, but the term has not been noted in the Dictionary Archive with that meaning. Door bands were normally stocked in PAIRs.

OED earliest date of use: 1379

Found in units of PAIR

Sources: Inventories (early), Inventories (late).

Door hinge

[dores w'th the hingees; doore hinge]

A type of HINGE and according to Randle Holme suitable for using with 'all great Doors of Houses, Barns, Stables, Gates of Towns and Cities, Parks and Fields, &c. which for length and fashion is made and adorned at the ends, and on the sides, according to the fancy and pleasure of the maker, with Flourishes, Caroses, Scrolls, and heads of Flowers de lis, and such like'. He added that it was 'fastned on the Door or Gate' and 'by the Eye thereof hung upon an hook droven into a Post on which it turneth: from whence it is termed a Hook and Hinge, or a Hinge for a Hook' [Holme (2000)].

The PORTAL hinge, as in '1 doz of portall hinges 7s' [Inventories (1660)], was presumably a type of door hinge.

Not found in the OED

Sources: Inventories (early).
References: Holme (2000).



From the Hindi 'doriya' meaning STRIPED cloth, and from 'dor' meaning thread, the term is given as 'doreas' in other sources. It is a kind of STRIPED Indian MUSLIN with the stripes apparently running longitudinally. In J.F.'s 'Merchant's Warehouse', doria was described as 'a Musling that is a yard half quarter broad, and the broadest sorts of stripes of any Musling, and usually the coarsest and cheapest sort' [Anon (1996)]. It was included among the muslins listed in an act of 1700 [Acts (1700)]. Milburn listed dorias among INDIAN - PIECE GOODS and stated they were imported from 'Madras and the Coast' [Yule and Burnell (1886, pb 1996)]. It has not been noted in the shops, although 'doree' has been noted in one newspaper advertisement of stock for sale [Newspapers (1770)]. It may well have been present under the generic name of muslin in other outlets. By the 1790s MANCHESTER was making muslins as of good a quality and as cheaply as those imported so the East India Company ceased to order Dorias [Montgomery (1984)].

OED earliest date of use: 1696

Found described as BOOK, SPRIGGED, STRIPED

Sources: Acts, Newspapers.
References: Anon (1696), Montgomery (1984), Yule and Burnell (1886, pb 1996).


[dornyx; dornyk; dornix; dornicke; dornic; dornex; dornex; dorneck; dornay; darnyx; darnocke; darnock; darnix; darnicke; darnick; darnex]

The name in the first sense comes from the Flemish town of Doornijk, now more commonly known by its French name Tournay, where their manufacture originated. The variant 'dornay' perhaps indicates confusion between the two names [Inventories (1588)]. The suggestion that in the second sense of a LINEN CLOTH, the name comes from the town of Dornock is believed to be erroneous by the OED, but it seems to us to offer some explanation for why the name of Dornick was attached to two such different types of cloth.

The label is given most commonly to a TEXTILE made with a LINEN warp, and a WOOLLEN weft. It was made originally in Flanders, but its manufacture had been introduced into England by Flemish weavers in the sixteenth century [Montgomery (1984)]; [Acts (1552)]. Presumably, in order to protect the nascent home industry, the Book of Rates for 1582 carefully itemised all the possible varieties of foreign manufacture, though in so doing it indicated coincidentally how dornick was sometimes made with CADDIS or THREAD, WOOL or SILK in the weft [Rates (1582)]. FRENCH dornick was also rated. These fabrics were all used for furnishings of various sorts. They became uncommon after 1660, and had apparently ceased to be in use by 1700. Two further clauses in the 1660 book of rates suggest that English weavers specialised in making dornick COVERLETs and HANGINGS [Rates (1660)]; [Rates (1660)], but it was also used for making many other furnishings.

OED earliest date of use in this sense: 1489

Although a LINEN CLOTH called GREEN DORNICK was rated in the 1582 Book of Rates, dornick in this sense was largely a product of Britain in the eighteenth century, and in the Dictionary Archive at least can not be confused with the former meaning which had virtually disappeared by then. Dornick as a linen cloth was used in Scotland largely for the table. It appears to have been made in that country, and only comes to the attention of legislators after the Act of Union when its production was strictly regulated [Acts (1713)]; [Acts (1726)].

No clear, dated quotation in the OED in this sense

As a fabric of linen/wool mixture: Found describing APRON, APRONING, BED, bencher, CARPET, COVERNING, COVERLET, CUPBOARD CLOTH, CURTAIN, CUSHION, HANGING, PETTICOAT, VALANCE Found described as BLUE, BROAD, with CADDIS, COLOURED, ELL BROAD, ENGLISH making, FRENCH making, GREEN, NARROW, PRINTED, STRIPED Found in units of PIECE, YARD Found rated by the ELL, PIECE of 15 YARD, YARD Found imported by the PARCEL
As a linen fabric: Found describing TABLE CLOTH, TABLE NAPKIN, TOWELLING Found described as BROAD, DOUBLE, SINGLE Found rated by the PIECE of 30 YARD

Sources: Acts, Houghton, Inventories (early), Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late), Rates.
References: Montgomery (1984).


[duble; duble; dubble]

Double was a very common descriptor that had a variety of meanings not now always well understood. The most common referred to an increase in size as in double CLOUT, double COVERLET and double HANDKERCHIEF. However, in some instances only an enlargement of size was indicated, and not a literal doubling, as the many differences in meaning of DOUBLE PIECE show. In the same way a BRANDY of DOUBLE PROOF may not have been twice as strong as the single proof, nor may the various sizes of paper like 'Double Crown' and 'Double elephant' necessarily have been double the size of their single counterparts [Acts (1784)].

In some TEXTILEs, 'double' may have referred to a different mode of weaving as in DOUBLE CAMLET and DOUBLE MOCKADO. Probably many of the fabrics that had 'double' as a descriptor were similar. This group may include ALEPINE, BUFFIN, CALAMANCO, DAMASK, GROGRAM, POPLIN, SAY and SHAG. Just to confuse the issue, 'double' could mean folded, probably with reference to cloth of double width. No certain cases of this use have been identified in the Dictionary Archive, though possibilities include BROADCLOTH and CANVAS. Some articles of apparel that had re-enforced or strengthened parts were called 'double, hence 'lether gloves duble' and 'Double Heeled Hose'.

Double flowers, that is those with extra petals modified from stamens or carpels, were fashionable in the eighteenth century. Plants like double anemones, 'double podded' CARNATIONs and double HYACINTHs were offered for sale by nurserymen and florists [for example, NEWSPAPERS LY1758LNC007; NEWSPAPERS NY1760MNM044].

LOCKS in variety were sometimes so made that they could be double locked for security. These included the BRIDLE LOCK, CHEST LOCK and SPRING LOCK.

OED earliest date of use: c1300

(2) Found describing PIECE, SAY, SERGE Found with PLOY, TURFED (3) Found as 'double iron plates called doubles' Found rated by the BUNDLE, DOZEN, PIECE, SHOCK

Sources: Acts, Diaries, Houghton, Inventories (early), Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late), Newspapers, Patents, Recipes, Tradecards.

Double barrelled

[double barrel; double and single-barrelled]

In connection with FIRE ARM, it means having two barrels on one stock. There was considerable interest in the eighteenth century to improve the efficiency of double barrelled guns, hence several patents, as for example [Patents (1789)] and [Patents (1798)]. A particular problem lay in the firing mechanism.

OED online earliest date of use: 1709

Found describing GUN, PISTOL

Sources: Patents.

Double bays

[double bayes]

The manufacture of the TEXTILE, double BAYS, seems to have been introduced by Dutch immigrants in the late sixteenth century. Unlike DOUBLE CAMLET, double bays were not distinguishable in the weave from the single, but they were 'of the highest sorte', and were wider and longer. They were a speciality of the weavers at Sandwich in Kent [Kerridge (1985)]. In the Book of Rates of 1660 they were said to weigh between 34 and 60 POUND, in other words anything upwards of double the weight of the single [Rates (1660)].

Not found in the OED

Found rated by the PIECE

Sources: Rates.
References: Kerridge (1995).

Double brandy

[double brandy]

The most explicit reference to the term comes in an act of 1733: 'Brandy, Spirits and Aqua-vitae above Proof, commonly called Double Brandy' [Acts (1733)]. An earlier act [Acts (1696)], by which 'Brandy of single Proof' was to pay in rates £30 per TON and 'Double proof' £60 suggests they may often have been a considerable difference in strength.

OED online earliest date of use: 1705 as 'Double Distill'd Spanish Brandy'

Sources: Acts.

Double camlet

[duble chamlett; dubble ditto; dubble camlett; dub ditto; double ditto; double camlett; double camellett; camblett double]

Whereas the single CAMLET had a twist in the WARP only, in the double camlet the WEFT was also twisted. As a result warp and weft were equally prominent, unlike in the single where only the warp stood out. FILOSELLE, PARAGON and PEROPUS were all forms of double camlet [Kerridge (1985)]. Double camlet should not be confused with camlet in a DOUBLE PIECE.

OED online earliest date of use: 1605 under Paragon

Found described as BROAD, NARROW, PLAIN
Found in units of PIECE, YARD

Sources: Inventories (mid-period), Inventories (late).
References: Kerridge (1985).

Double chest of drawers

[double drawers; double and single chests of drawers]

A high CHEST OF DRAWERS made in two parts, with the drawers in the higher tier generally smaller than those below. John Gloag suggests this piece of FURNITURE was usually called a 'chest-on-chest', a term not met in the Dictionary Archive, or from the late eighteenth century a 'talboy' [Gloag (1952, revised 1991)].

OED earliest date of use: 1906 under Tallboy


Sources: Inventories (late), Newspapers.
References: Gloag (1952, revised 1991).

Double comb

[duble box combe; combes double]

Randle Holme's illustration of a 'combe or head combe', shows a COMB with teeth along the two opposite edges. This, he wrote, was 'often termed a double tooth combe, and a head combe, or a close and narrow tooth combe. It is a thing by which the haire of the head is layd smooth and streight, and kept from growing into Knotts and Arslocks' [Holme (2000)]. Elsewhere he wrote of a double comb as 'two combe one clapsed into the other' [Holme (2000)]. The two definitions can hardly be made compatible.

Not found in the OED

Found rated by the GROSS of 12 DOZEN

Sources: Inventories (early), Rates.
References: Holme (2000).

Double deal

[double do]

A term found only in 1731 in the Gloucester Coastal Port Books, where they were contrasted with SINGLE DEAL. The term is not common in the Dictionary Archive. Customs distinguished DEALs over 4 INCH thick from those less than that, and it is possible that this is the relevant distinction. A double width is a possible alternative.

Not found in the OED online

Found describing END, PLANK
Found in units of HUNDRED

Sources: Inventories (late).

Double distilled

[double-distilled; double refined; double distill'd]

Distilled twice; in some senses therefore comparable in meaning to COMPOUND. The term was applied particularly to DISTILLED VINEGAR and to LAVENDER WATER, for which a second distillation was desirable to remove unwanted ingredients.

Not found in the OED

Sources: Newspapers, Tradecards.

Double flint glass

Double FLINT GLASS was recorded in the Gloucester Coastal Port Books in 1736 and appears once in the Dictionary archive as 'the best double Flint-Glass, both Diamond-Cut and Plain' [Newspapers (1737)]. It also appears, for example, in the inventory of Alexander Purdie 1779 June 21 of the County of York, Virginia, USA, dated 21 June 1779. This included '1 Mahogany Rum Case with 2 doze double flint bottles' [Pastportal (online)]. How the term 'DOUBLE' affects the meaning of FLINT GLASS is not clear, but one 'Index of Refraction' shows double flint glass with a slightly higher index, suggesting that it was of a slightly better quality [Cherniawsky (online)]. It seems to have been used primarily for high-class GLASS WARE like DECANTERs and WINE GLASSes.

Not found in the OED online

Found described as BEST

Sources: Newspapers.
References: Cherniawsky (online), Pastportal (online), Gloucester Coastal Port Books (1998).

Double gilt

[duble gilte; dubell guylte; dubble gilt; double guilt]

Gilded with a double coating of GOLD [Lloyd (1895)]. It was used primarily for hollow vessels like a BOWL, a CUP or a GOBLET, but also for a COVER of a SALT, presumably because it was the part best displayed, so 'ij saltis & A cou' dubell guylte weynge xxxvij owcs vij li viijs' [Inventories (1541)]. The example also shows how expensive SILVER WARE double gilt could be. It is not therefore surprising to find double gilt silver ware among goods stolen by one Elizabeth Miller alias Green, a defendant at the Old Bailey [Oldbailey (online)].

OED online earliest date of use: 1515 under Gallipot


Sources: Acts, Inventories (early), Inventories (mid-period), Rates.
References: Lloyd (1895), Oldbailey (online).