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  #51  
Old 04-16-2012, 12:48 AM
Bridewell Bridewell is offline
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And a "nob thatcher" is indeed a wig maker.

A "ripper" is a person who brings fish inland to sell. There would have been a few of them coming up Commercial Street from the docks (and all of them carrying knives, of course). Perhaps Jack the Ripper was a Ripper called Jack.

Regards, Bridewell.
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Last edited by Bridewell : 04-16-2012 at 12:54 AM.
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  #52  
Old 04-16-2012, 02:02 AM
Cogidubnus Cogidubnus is offline
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Cheers Archaic...I suppose I could've googled them, but having undertaken not to, I felt obliged to stick by that...still convinced there were rippers in the copper mines though!

Dave
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  #53  
Old 04-16-2012, 02:52 AM
Archaic Archaic is offline
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Hi Dave. I wouldn't be surprised if you're right; that word sure got around!

Go ahead and look through the online 'Occupations' glossary linked in Post #1. It's your turn to stump the rest of us.

Cheers,
Archaic
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  #54  
Old 04-16-2012, 03:53 AM
curious curious is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaic View Post
Hi Curious. Kudos for the Shakespeare tie-in!!

Macbeth is my favorite Shakespeare play, so I should have recalled this line. Like all lines from Shakespeare it has multiple levels of meaning.

People often blamed unaccountable physical sensations, aches & pains on "witches" or other "evil ones" who were believed to inflict suffering upon the virtuous from a distance. Thus random pains and odd physical sensations were also seen as Omens or Portents of the approach of Evil.

What's ironic is that MacBeth starts out the play as a truly heroic, noble, loyal man... but he is seduced by the Witches' bizarrely enigmatic prophecy that he "shall be King hereafter". The Witches don't explain how that is supposed to come about.

Goaded by his ambitious wife, Macbeth's tragic mistake is to try to "actively assist" Fate in forcing the prophecy come true. So not only does he repeatedly consult Witches - in itself a sin and an "evil act"- but he actually murders his own guests and friends and their children in his obsessive drive to make the prophecy come true. Themes of Evil, Chaos, and the "Inversion of the Natural Order" permeate the play.

The Witches are supposed to be creatures of Evil who consort with the Devil and respond to the Devil's call, which was believed to involve some sort of demonic physical contact. Witches were also "tested" by "pricking" them with sharp needles (particularly in "suspicious" birth marks such as moles) to see if they reacted and if they bled.

So Shakespeare incorporates a myriad of connotations in the line, "By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes" - especially because the living embodiments of Evil, the 3 Witches, sense an even greater Evil approaching in the form of the supposedly heroic but secretly egotistical, ambitious, and murderous Macbeth.

God, I love Shakespeare! Thanks again, Curious.
Archaic
So, is that why a pricker is a witch hunter? or is it something else.
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  #55  
Old 04-16-2012, 05:42 AM
Archaic Archaic is offline
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Default "Pricking" Test for Witches

Hi Curious.

The specific term "pricker" refers to a "witch-hunter" who "tests" alleged witches by pricking them with special pins. The needles were often inserted in birthmarks or moles because were regarded with suspicion as being "the Devil's mark". (Woe betide anyone with a strawberry mark, or God forbid, a mole with dark hairs growing out of it!)

Robert supplied a good Wikipedia link on the subject a couple of pages back, but here it is again:

"Pricking'': http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pricking

Note that 'false' pricking-needles have been discovered which held a retractable needle. These 'tools' were designed to deceive witnesses into believing that a witch's flesh had been pierced, but she did not bleed- a sure sign of a witch!

Another sure sign of a witch is the demonic tangle I discovered in my horse's mane the other morning... it looked like it was deliberately crocheted into dozens of separate knots that were all insanely twisted in opposite directions- maddening!

But don't worry, I'm not jumping to conclusions. I intend to calmly and scientifically determine if the impossible snarls were caused by a cranky old neighbor's wicked spell-casting, or by a horde of evil fairies wielding miniature tornadoes.

- Can anyone lend me the right tools?

Thanks,
Archaic
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  #56  
Old 04-16-2012, 12:43 PM
bolo bolo is offline
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Hi Archaic,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaic View Post
But don't worry, I'm not jumping to conclusions. I intend to calmly and scientifically determine if the impossible snarls were caused by a cranky old neighbor's wicked spell-casting, or by a horde of evil fairies wielding miniature tornadoes.

- Can anyone lend me the right tools?
I would recommend black bat flowers dipped in a saturated salt-water solution. Just hit your neighbour with one, if his or her face turns lime green, he or she is a demonic witch, a used car dealer or a banker, all of which calls for immediate extermination.

Regards,

Boris
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  #57  
Old 04-16-2012, 01:51 PM
curious curious is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaic View Post
Hi Curious.

The specific term "pricker" refers to a "witch-hunter" who "tests" alleged witches by pricking them with special pins. The needles were often inserted in birthmarks or moles because were regarded with suspicion as being "the Devil's mark". (Woe betide anyone with a strawberry mark, or God forbid, a mole with dark hairs growing out of it!)

Robert supplied a good Wikipedia link on the subject a couple of pages back, but here it is again:

"Pricking'': http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pricking

Note that 'false' pricking-needles have been discovered which held a retractable needle. These 'tools' were designed to deceive witnesses into believing that a witch's flesh had been pierced, but she did not bleed- a sure sign of a witch!

Another sure sign of a witch is the demonic tangle I discovered in my horse's mane the other morning... it looked like it was deliberately crocheted into dozens of separate knots that were all insanely twisted in opposite directions- maddening!

But don't worry, I'm not jumping to conclusions. I intend to calmly and scientifically determine if the impossible snarls were caused by a cranky old neighbor's wicked spell-casting, or by a horde of evil fairies wielding miniature tornadoes.

- Can anyone lend me the right tools?

Thanks,
Archaic
Thanks, I missed that. And good luck with your neighbor -- be careful, be safe
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  #58  
Old 04-16-2012, 09:54 PM
Cogidubnus Cogidubnus is offline
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Default Passing the baton

OK since I've been asked, how about these three?

Quister
Qwylwryghte
Yatman

Good luck (and as ever, no peaking!)

Dave
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  #59  
Old 04-16-2012, 10:13 PM
Archaic Archaic is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cogidubnus View Post
OK since I've been asked, how about these three?

Quister
Qwylwryghte
Yatman

Good luck (and as ever, no peaking!)

Dave
Oh, brother! You turned the tables on me.

I'll try Qwylwryghte. Looks like an old English word. I'm guessing that it means either "a Maker of Quill Pens" or somebody that is hired to write for those who can't.

I'm still mulling over the other ones. Does "Yatman" have anything to do with boats, like an early rendition of Yachtman?

Thanks,
Archaic
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