Regency Era Lexicon – We’re Up to the Letter “L”

Regency Era Lexicon – We’re Up to the Letter “L”

£ – symbol for the pound, a monetary unit

Ladies’ Mile – a road in Hyde Park set aside for women

Lady – used in the following manner: colloquially used for a man’s wife; the wife of a baronet or a knight; the wife of a peer below the rank of duke; the wife of a younger son of a duke or marquis; the daughter of a duke, marquis, or earl

ladybird – slang for a prostitute

Lady Day – March 25; a quarter day; until 1752, it was the start of the year for official business; the day the Angel Gabriel announced the birth of Jesus to the Virgin Mary

lady’s maid – the woman who tended to the mistress’s clothes and grooming; was an upper servant in the household

Lambeth Palace – the official residence of the Archbishop of Canterbury

landau – an open carriage with four wheels; had a hood at each end and two seats opposite

larder – where perishable goods were kept in a great house

Laudanum_poison_100ml_flaschelaudanum – opium in a solution of alcohol

lawn – a fancy linen

league – a measure of distance that was not precise; somewhere between 2 and 4 miles

levee – a formal reception for presenting men to the sovereign

liberty – an area outside the formal city limits but was still subject to the law’s representatives of the city

license to marry – there were three different licenses/means to marry: common/ordinary license, which was purchased from a clergyman and the couple married in the parish in which one of them lived; calling of the banns, in which the intention to marry was announced over a period of three consecutive Sundays – the couple could marry within 90 days of the last calling of the banns; a special license could only be afforded by the wealthy and those of the haut ton, but they permitted the couple to marry at any time and place

lifeholder – land/property leased for a period of time equivalent to the life of the leasee

life peerage – meant the title died with the holder; not a hereditary title

Limehouse – an area in east London near the docks

linen – a generic term for fine shirts and underwear

link – torches carried by “linkboys,” who ran ahead of a carriage to light its way through the city streets at night

linsey-woolsey – material made of wool and linen

list – a cloth’s edge from which slippers were sometimes made

from the PBS website for "Manor House" manorhouse/thepeople/ charlie_duties.html

from the PBS website for “Manor House”

livery – the uniform worn by the servants of a house

living – a benefice

London Corresponding Society – founded in 1792 to oppose the war with France, fight hunger, and compel parliamentary reform; comprised mainly of small craftsmen

London Riots of 1795 – London Corresponding Society stoned the coach of George III as he traveled through London’s streets to open Parliament; later they rioted to pass acts forbidding Seditious Meetings, etc.

loo – a card game; must win the trick with the high card or the trump card

lord – member of the peerage; also a form of address; also a courtesy title given to the eldest sons of the peerage and to the younger sons, but only if the Christian and surnames were added (Lord James Landry)

Royal arms of Aragon, lozenge-shaped and crowned. CC BY-SA 3.0

Royal arms of Aragon, lozenge-shaped and crowned.
CC BY-SA 3.0

lozenge – the shape of the coat of arms on a carriage for a spinster or a widow (rather than the shape of a shield used by the male heir of a line)

Low Church – people who did not practice the rituals of the Church of England (for example, the Evangelicals); stressed the Church’s Protestantism; tolerated Dissenters; supported Latitudinarianism or latitude within the church

lych-gate – a covered gateway at a church entrance where people attending a funeral would wait for the minister before moving the coffin to the graveyard


About Regina Jeffers

Regina Jeffers is the award-winning author of Austenesque, Regency and historical romantic suspense.
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2 Responses to Regency Era Lexicon – We’re Up to the Letter “L”

  1. Actually the ‘Life Peers’ is a relatively new thing, they were first created in 1958 by the Conservative party to boost their numbers in the House of Lords. The hereditary lords couldn’t be bothered attending Parliament so they decided to make (sell) life peerages, The Labour party saw the wisdom of doing this and followed suit stacking the upperhouse ( The Lords) to get their legislation through once they got into power, I look on them as pseudo lords/lady’s (Baron / Baronesses.) They are dished out to any party hack or big contributor to a political party’s coffers and in my mind are farcical. 🙄

    The special licence to marry could only be issued by the Archbishop of Canterbury this from Wikipedia ;-

    The other was the special license, which could only be granted by the Archbishop of Canterbury or his officials and allowed the marriage to take place in any church.

    • As a “special license” is often used as a plot device in Regency romances, I was aware of the Archbishop’s role in issuing the license. Even Mrs. Bennet suggested that Darcy and Lizzy get one in Pride and Prejudice.

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