Website Subject Categories: Version 4


January 2008


Subject categories have been set up primarily to assist users of the website to browse and access information in the documentary records by subject or topic. They also provide an editorial reference for record compilers on the implications of their use of vocabulary. The categories do not reflect any rigid structuring of the data or use of mandatory key words; subject areas are presented for browsing in the form of results from free text search of all records using the pre-selected search terms shown below for each topic. These pre-selected searches have been chosen to provide easy access and a manageable number of returns [typically between 50 and 250 individual document references] on topics covering a representative range of historical interests.

Because the returns for any topic arise from free text searches, users should be aware that there are some limitations to browsing the records in this way, as follows:

  1. Some document records may use words other than those included in the pre-selected search terms to describe matters relevant to the topic in question, in which case the results shown will not include those records.
  2. Some search terms have been avoided on the grounds that they do not discriminate sufficiently and their use would produce too many returns to be useful for normal browsing. Examples include words like ‘lease’ and ‘property’.
  3. Some search terms have different meanings in different contexts, all of which will be found by a text search; for example ‘lord’ can arise in the ‘year of our lord’, the ‘lord of the manor’ or even as a surname like ‘John Lord’, some of which might not be relevant to a particular subject area. Words with many different meanings have so far as possible been avoided in the search terms used below, though some irrelevant returns may still arise. Conversely, some relevant results within any given topic may have been excluded as a result.
  4. A variety of other minor anomalies can occur in free text searches which may generate a small proportion of irrelevant results, though these can usually be spotted quite quickly when browsing.


The subject areas and topics defined below are not necessarily exhaustive, and there are many ways to examine history from different perspectives. This website is designed to allow the text of all the records to be searched as flexibly as possible. If the pre-selected searches do not meet your needs, use the site search engine to construct your own tailor-made queries.


Description: This overall subject area addresses how the people of Ewyas Lacy have been governed and have earned their livings over the centuries..

1.1 Farming

1.1.1 Arable

Search terms: arable, barley, clover, corn, crop, fallow, grain, harvest, oats, potato, turnip, wheat,

1.1.2 Forestry

Search terms: forestry, coppice, wood

1.1.3 Horticulture

Search terms: garden, orchard

1.1.4 Livestock

Search terms : livestock, beast, cattle, cows, horse, meadow, pasture, pig*, sheep, stock


1.2 Government

1.2.1 Feudal Government

Search terms: bailiwick, borough, burgage, commote, “court baron”, “court leet”, demesne, lordship, manor

1.2.2 Modern Government

Search terms: council, county, “county court”, district, parish, township

1.2.3 Officials

Search terms: bailiff, clerk, commissioner, constable, coroner, coroners, escheator, juror, jury, magistrate, overseer, officer, sergeant, sheriff, steward

1.2.4 Prominent People

Search terms: baron, duke, earl, esq*, gent*, king, knight, “lord of the manor”, “marcher lord”, prince

1.3 Industry

Search terms: forge, kiln, mill, quarry, “post office”, shop, workshop

1.4 Revenue and Taxes

1.4.1 Income from land

Search terms: fine, heriot, herriot, rent

1.4.2 Taxation

Search terms: “land tax”, levy, rates, tax*, tithe, toll

1.5 Warfare

Search terms: archer, battle, castle, “civil war”, conquest, footmen, fort, motte, rebel*

1.6 Working Lives

1.6.1 Agricultural workers

Search terms: cowkeeper, farmer, husbandman, labourer, yeoman


1.6.2 Trades and Professions

Search terms: blacksmith, carpenter (joiner), carrier (carter), clergyman (abbot, bishop, canon, cleric, curate, dean, minister, monk, parson, prior, rector, reverend, vicar), cooper, doctor (surgeon), dyer, fuller, glover, innkeeper (“beer retailer”, publican), mason, mercer, miller, quarryman, postmaster (postmistress), servant (maid, gardener), shoemaker (cordwainer, corviser), tailor, tanner, teacher (master, headmaster, headmistress), shopkeeper, turner, weaver (“cloth worker”), wheelwright


Description: This overall subject area addresses how the people of Ewyas Lacy have brought up their families and lived their lives over the centuries.

2.1 Domestic

Search terms: domestic, birth, burial, census, chattels, child, children, dress, furniture, family, household, inventory, marriage, servant

2.2 Education

Search terms: education, class, pupil, school, schoolmaster, teacher

2.3 Health & Welfare

Search Terms: health, welfare, alms, charity, charities, doctor, guardian, hospital, nurse, pauper, register, registry, “relieving officer”, surgeon, tramp, union, vagrant, workhouse

2.4 Law & Order

Search terms: cell, constable, coroner, coroners, crime, “county court”, felon, justice, police, policeman, prison, punishment, sergeant

2.5 Religion

Search terms: advowson, baptism, baptist, bible, birth, burial, Cistercian, diocese, ecclesiastical, grandmont, grandmontine grave, gravestone, marriage, Methodist, monument

[for clergymen see section 1.6 ‘Working Lives’; for religious buildings see section 3.1 ‘Buildings’]

2.6 Services

Search terms: bridge, bridleway, channel, electricity, footpath, inn*, lane, market, path, railway, road, spring, track, water



Description: This overall subject area addresses the places and the environment in which the people of Ewyas Lacy have lived and worked.

3.1 Buildings

3.1.1 Business premises

Search terms: bakery, forge, inn*, mill, “post office”, “public house”, shop, workshop

3.1.2 Farms

Search terms : barn, cowhouse, farmhouse, “farm buildings”, granary, “hay loft”, outbuildings, piggeries, shed, stable

3.1.3 Homes

Search terms: cottage, dwelling, house, lodge, mansion, “manor house”, messuage, “property called”, rectory, tenement, vicarage

3.1.4 Religious buildings

Search terms: abbey, chapel, church, monastery, priory,

3.2 Landscape

Search terms: brook, coppice, darren, ditch, enclosure, forest, field, geology, hedge, hill, mountain, pond, pool, river, stream, valley, watercourse, wood

3.3 Land tenure

Search terms: copyhold, customary, estate [not probate], park, freehold, leasehold, “lease for lives”

3.4 Land usage

Search terms: arable, close, common, coppice, corn, enclosure, field, forest, garden, meadow, oats, orchard, parcel, pasture, plock, quarry, waste, wheat, wood

3.5 Natural History

Search terms: fauna, flora, flower, fungi, orchid

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