A Regency Era Lexicon – “A” and “B” Are Followed By “C”



Regency Era Lexicon

Cadet – the youngest son or branch of a family

Called to the bar – authorized to practice law as a barrister

Camisole – a woman’s undershirt worn between the dress and the corset

Candlemas – a church festival celebrated on February 2; celebrates the purification of the Virgina Mary and Jesus’s presentation in the Temple

Capping – to follow up with something better in a conversation (Think Darcy and Elizabeth to understand this concept.)

Carking – to worry someone

Carter – the driver of a cart or wagon

Catarrh – mucus fills up the head, nose, and throat

Chair – a light and agile, as well as inexpensive, one-horse carriage (not be confused with the sedan chair, which was a rickshaw-like vehicle) 

Chancellor of the Exchequer – the highest post after the Prime Minister; controlled the treasury

Chancery – the court of equity law; generally sat at Westminster Hall

Chandler – a man who dealt in candles

‘Change – an abbreviation of the Royal Exchange often used in speech

Charabanc – a large carriage with two seats facing forward; lightweight and speedy

Chariot – a four-horse vehicle; the two seats both faced front; lighter than a chaise

Chase and Four – a closed carriage used for traveling; pulled by four horses

Cheapside – a street in eastern London close to the river Thames; a non-fashionable side of London

Chemise – a woman’s long undergarment; much in the form of a nightgown

Chemisette – a partial shirt worn tucked into a very low-cut gown

Chimneypiece – a mantelpiece or decorative moulding about the chimney

Circulating libraries – required a subscription to borrow the best-sellers; most famous was Mudie’s

Climbing boy – the child who would climb up into the chimney to clean it

Clogs – shoes with wooden or metal rims on the bottom; used to walk in bad weather

Coach – a vehicle used for public transportation, as well as private; could hold six or more passengers; two seats facing each other; closed vehicle; front and back axles connected to a “crank neck”

Cob – a sturdily built horse, often ridden by an overweight person

College – one of the residential units around which the universities of Oxford and Cambridge were organized

Come Out – the process by which a young woman (usually 17 or 18) was presented to Society and was considered available for marriage

Commoner – an Oxford undergraduate not on scholarship

Condescension – being polite and generous to those from a lower rank

Conservatory – a room for growing plants

Consumption – an advanced stage of tuberculosis

Cottagers – lived in cottages upon a landowner’s property; worked on the estate

Cotillion – a French dance in which 4 couples form a square

Countenance – another word for the “face” or a person’s appearance

Country dance – very much like a square dance; a vigorous dance

County member – a member of Parliament; represented the county rather than a borough

Courtesy books – publications that advised on the education and conduct of a courtier ( a man of the royal court) or a prince

Covent Garden – a large market near Charing Cross; sold fruit and vegetables; near the theatre district

Crape – a black silk used for mourning clothes

Cravat – a long fine cloth tied about a gentleman’s neck in a variety of “bows”

Cross writing – fill a page of writing normally and then turn it at a 90 degree angle and write between the open spaces; postage was very expensive

Curricle – a two-wheeled carriage; pulled y two horses; could seat two people, who of whom was the driver


About Regina Jeffers

Regina Jeffers is the award-winning author of Austenesque, Regency and historical romantic suspense.
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2 Responses to A Regency Era Lexicon – “A” and “B” Are Followed By “C”

  1. Chelsea says:

    I found all of these definitions really interesting, thanks for sharing them.

  2. I’ll likely do one of these posts each week. Of course, certain letters will be more difficult to feature. I appreciate your stopping by.

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