If you want to have a little fun with this and actually test yourself then don’t scroll all the way down right away! Each answer is given after each question. Reveal them after you guess.
Ok, I have a fun little test for you. Do you know medieval jobs? Maybe you are a medievalist or maybe you just know a lot of words. Either way this should be fun. And you might even learn a new medieval word or two. These are all professions that originate in the early to middle ages.
Test 1: What is a Blacksmith?
Ha! That is a pretty easy one! You probably know it.
But let’s take it a little further.. What is a Farrier?
Answer: A Farrier is a subset of blacksmithing. It is a person who specializes in working with horses. Typically shoeing them, making and repairing the various metal horse gear. And Farriers of old were even well-versed in diseases and afflictions of horses.
Test 2: What is a cooper?
Ahh…. did you know that one? If you know this one then you get a grade of at least a “B”. Good work.
A cooper is a person who makes and repairs wooden barrels and casks. Sometimes they also make various wooden utensils. Think of the big wine barrels you see in vinyards. Making and repairing those is the job of a cooper.
Test 3: What is a Cordwainer?
(The hardest one. If you get this one then you get a grade of “A”.
Ahh… hint: It is similar to a cobbler but definitely not the same.
Answer: A cordwainer is a person who works with brand new leather to make shoes. It is important that it is brand new leather and brand new shoes. This is because a cobbler only works with old leather and repairs shoes.
In the middle ages this distinction was very important. Cordwainers did not allow cobblers to make shoes. Cobblers only repaired shoes. They had separate guilds and eventually cobblers were accepted as a sub guild of the cordwainer guild.
Good work if you got them all!
Want to know more medieval jobs? I have a list of them on my website here: Medieval Jobs