Regency Era Lexicon – the Letters “I” and “J” and “K”

Imperial – the term “imperial” designated the officially adopted uniform system of weights and measures that replaced the MANY different standards that the English had used prior to 1820

Impropriate – tithes made to a layman rather than to a member of the clergy

Indenture – the agreement between an apprentice and the master craftsman

India Office – the governmental office that oversaw “issues” in India

india rubber – used to make erasers

inform – to bring formal criminal charges against a person

in-law – used to both designate a relationship achieved through marriage (mother-in-law, brother-in-law, etc.), as well as a step relationship [also “brother” and “sister” was often used to designate an “in-law” relationship]

Inns of Court – four institutions [the Inner Temple, the Middle Temple, Lincoln’s Inn, and Gray’s Inn] which housed barristers and their law offices, as well as dining facilities for the barristers and law students

Irish Union Act – actually two complementary acts [The Union with Ireland Act 1800 and The Act of Union 1800]; passed on 2 July 1800 and 1 August 1800 respectively, the twin Acts united the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland to create the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland; the union came into effect on 1 January 1801

ironmongers – a seller of hardware

irregulars – part-time volunteers or militia

jackboots – above the knee boots, often worn by the military to protect the knee/leg from leg injuries and sword attacks

Jack Ketch – an infamous hangman from the 1600s; his name became synonymous with the hangman

Janeites – a term used for devoted fans of Jane Austen; was popularized by Rudyard Kipling in a short story called “The Janeites,” first published in 1924

jet – coal that is highly polished and made into beads, etc.; one of the few jewels that were considered acceptable to wear during mourning

jig – a lively one-person dance

jobber – one who rented horses

The Jockey Club (a supposedly anonymous pamphlet, also known as Sketch of the Manners of the Age) – written in 1792 by the Radical journalist Charles Pigott; to answer the questions of the Prince Regent “unsuitable friends,” his mistress Mrs Fitzherbert, and his debts

jointure – the portion of the husband’s estate which he would leave to his widow upon his death; part of the “marriage settlements” which preceded marriages

joseph – an old-fashioned long coat, which was worn by woman when riding; was buttoned down the front

junior lordship – subordinate positons in governmental departments

justice of the peace – position to regulate peaceful/law affairs in a county; commissioned from the lord lieutenant

Juvenilia – the early works of Jane Austen

Kensington – an area just beyond Hyde Park in the western section of London

King’s Bench – one of the three superior courts of common law that sat in Westminster Hall in London; heard criminal cause

K. C. – an abbreviation following the name of barristers who were actually supposed to be counselors to the king; the initials represent “King’s Counsel”

knife – long favored as the instrument with which one ate; forks were late comers to the English table.

knight – the lowest of the titled ranks; used “Sir” before his given name (Sir William in Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice”); his wife was “Lady” + surname (Lady Lucas); a knight’s property was not automatically entailed

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4 Responses to Regency Era Lexicon – the Letters “I” and “J” and “K”

  1. Chelsea says:

    These were all really interesting.

  2. Every time I think I have mastered all the “little nuances” of titles and ranks, another one comes along.

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