Blupete's History Page


GLOSSARY: In support of ...
BLUEPETE'S HISTORY OF NOVA SCOTIA:

A B C D E F G H I J K L M [HISTORY JUMP PAGE]
N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z



(Click on letter to go to index.)
-A-

Acadia, Population Levels of Old ...:
Acadia, Transport Ships of the Acadian Deportation (1755):
Admiralty Court: (Under Construction.)

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-B-
Bastion:
A Bastion is a projecting part of a fortification, consisting of an earthwork, faced with brick or stone, or of a mass of masonry, in the form of an irregular pentagon, having its base in the main line, or at an angle, of the fortification; its flanks are the two sides which spring from the base, and are shorter than the faces or two sides which meet in the acute salient angle.
Blendheim (1704):
Boyne, Battle of the ...:
[See Glorious Revolution.]
Brigantine:
[See Sailing Vessels of the 18th Century..]
Byng, John:
[See Minorca.]

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-C-
Cape Finisterre:
On May 14th, 1747, off the Atlantic coast of Spain, Cape Finisterre, a British fleet of 16 warships under Anson came upon a French supply fleet under escort; shortly thereafter, a very famous naval battle was to unfold leading to the surrender of the French admiral, La Jonquière; and, glory for Anson. Anson had with him, as second in command, Peter Warren, the naval hero of "The First Siege of Louisbourg (1745). Also present, as the captain of the 74 gun Namur, was Boscawen, who lead the English naval fleet during The Second Siege of Louisbourg (1758). La Jonquière was on his way to Quebec with many of those who had been deported to France by the English after the French surrendered Louisbourg in 1745. The French fleet consisted of 16 warships, 22 transports, and six East Indiamen. In the DCB, we see written that the odds were much in the favour of the English ("the French could line up only 312 guns against 978 for the British"; vol. iii, p. 610). I wonder about this; as the English and the French were matched as to the number of war ships. The French, notwithstanding they lost the battle, did carry out their duty and held all of their charges safe: the English did not get at the supply ships; they were able to get away and get to their destinations, unmolested. In any event, the English and the French men-of-war pounded away at one another for five hours. Jonquière's ship, the 64-gun Sérieux, had five English ships pouring tons of shot into her; 140 members of her crew were ether killed or wounded, indeed, Jonquière was wounded. In 1749, La Jonquière, incidently, after having spent two years in England as a prisoner of war, with the arrival of "peace," finally was to take up his gubernatorial duties at Quebec during the summer of 1749.
Careen:
[See Sailing Vessels of the 18th Century..]
Casemate:
In a fortification, a vaulted chamber built in the thickness of the ramparts of a fortress, with embrasures for the defence of the place; a bomb-proof vault, generally under the ramparts of a fortress, used as a barrack, or a battery, or for both purposes.
Le Chameau.
Corvette:
[See Sailing Vessels of the 18th Century.]
Covered Way:
(See diagram under rampart.)
Culloden.

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-D-
Date:
For the English, in 1752, there was a change in the way they dated things; it brought the country in to line with the dating system of other nations. I quote Trevelyan [England Under Queen Anne, vol. 2, preface, p. x.]: "Until 1752 the English at home always used the Old Style, after 1700 eleven days behind the New Style of Gregory XIII's Calendar, which was current in all continental countries except Russia. Our sailors, on service at sea and on coast operations like the taking of Gibraltar, generally used the Old Style familiar at home. Our soldiers in the Netherlands and Spain generally but not always used the New. Diplomats abroad most of them used the New, but some the Old." Further, it is to be noted that under the Old Style dating system, the new year started on March 25th and not January 1st. Most modern history writers, however, will use January 1st as the turn over for the new year.
Dettington, Battle of ...:
See note in the biographical write on Robert Monckton.
Dysentery:
"A disease characterized by inflammation of the mucous membrane and glands of the large intestine, accompanied with griping pains, and mucous and bloody evacuations." (OED.)

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-E-
Embrazure:
An embrazure is much like a window or door through a wall. It is a gap or loophole, left open in a fortified wall so that a gun may be fired through it at the enemy outside of the walls. The sides of the embrazures, the jambs, are usually slanted or beveled, so that the inside profile of the opening is larger than that appearing on the outside of the wall. Such a spreading or embrasure of the jambs increases the opening inwards. An opening that leaves but just room for the muzzle to poke through and that widens as it comes in through the wall to the interior, allows a crew to work with the gun and yet leaves the least amount of exposure to the enemy beyond the walls.

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-F-
Fascine:
A long cylindrical faggot of brush or other small wood, firmly bound together at short intervals, used in filling up ditches, the construction of batteries, etc.
Fighting Fortieth (1697-1762):
Firkin:
"A small cask for liquids, fish, butter, etc., originally containing a quarter of a barrel ..."
Fontenoy, Battle of ...:
See note in the biographical write on Robert Monckton.
Flûte:
[See Sailing Vessels of the 18th Century..]
Frigate:
[See Sailing Vessels of the 18th Century..]

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-G-
Glacis:
A glacis is a gently sloping bank, which in fortifications, extends from the parapet of the covered way to meet the natural surface of the ground. (See diagram under rampart.)
Gabion:
A wicker basket, of cylindrical form, usually open at both ends, intended to be filled with earth, for use in fortification and engineering.
Glorious Revolution (1688):
Gordon Riots:
The Gordon Riots were named after Lord Gordon Gordon (1751-93). At the age of 23, doubtlessly occupying a family seat, Lord Gordon was to become a Member of Parliament. His record apparently shows that he was quite ready to attack all sides. He was much against the political rehabilitation of Roman Catholics; though, there was a movement -- at long last -- to allow Catholics to come back into the political mainstream. In 1778, legislation was passed to restore certain political rights to Catholics. The response that Lord Gordon had was to go to the streets and work up the mobs. On June 2nd, 1780, a mob of 50,000 Londoners marched in procession to the House of Commons crying for repeal. A riot broke out which was to last five days during which time Catholic chapels and private homes were destroyed. Other houses of public officials were destroyed including the house of the Chief Justice, Lord Mansfield. On the 7th of June the troops were called out and 285 of the rioters were reportedly killed. Lord Gordon himself was tried for high treason, but he was to have a famous champion for a lawyer, Erskine, and, Gordon was acquitted. His acquittal was not to bring him any peace and I note that things, thereafter, were to go badly for him. In 1793, Lord Gordon died in prison (Newgate) having been put there on account of a libel on Marie Antoinette.
Grenadiers
Guns

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-H-
The Huguenot:
Hogshead:
A hogshead is a large cask for the storage and transportation of liquids and commodities. Abbreviated, hhd. Though its capacity did vary from country to country to one degree or another, the London hogshead of beer contained 54 gallons. Thus, the standard measure was around 50 gallons, for most liquids; but it could vary to a great degree, for example, a hogshead of molasses was, in 1749, fixed at 100 gallons. They were useful empty as well as full: Hogsheads fill'd with Earth served to make Breast-works, to cover the Men. "Innumerable fascines, and hogsheads, and trunks of trees, were heaped on each other." (Gibbon.) (See also pipe; for barrels, their sizes and use, see David E. Stephens' article, "Forgotten Trades of Nova Scotia" in NSHQ#2/1.)

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-I-
Immigrant Ships: The Arrrivals At Halifax, 1750-52:
Indians:
See The Micmac of Megumaagee.

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-J-
Jacobites:
Justices of the Peace:
In the days under review, there was a distinct lack of legally trained people; yet, there was as great a need, as ever, for appointed individuals to adjudicate and to settle civil disputes. An upstanding member of the community would be appointed and charged with the duty to keep the peace in the area named. "Their principal duties consist in committing offenders to trial before a judge and jury when satisfied that there is a prima facie case against them, convicting and punishing summarily in minor causes, granting licenses, and acting, if County Justices, as judges at Quarter Sessions." (OED.) "Police work, petty justice, the poor law, and every function of local government" depended upon the justices of the peace. (Trevelyan's England Under Queen Anne vol. 1, p. 101.) Trevelyan, in another work of his, English Social History at p. 353, "... generally speaking the Justices who did most of the work in rural districts were substantial squires, too rich to be corrupt or mean, proud to do hard public work for no pay, anxious to stand well with their neighbours, but often ignorant and prejudiced without meaning to be unjust, and far too much a law unto themselves." With the passage of the County Council Act, 1888, the administrative functions of the Justices of the Peace were eliminated; rural magistracy came to an end in England. (Trevelyan's England Under Queen Anne, p. 100.) The system was followed in Canada in the old days; but, it no longer exists (pity).

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-K-

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-L-
Letter of Marque:
Letters of marque (and reprisal), a licence, would be granted to appropriate subjects by both sides in a time of war. It was "a licence to fit out an armed vessel and employ it in the capture of the merchant shipping belonging to the enemy's subjects, the holder of letters of marque being called a privateer or corsair, and entitled by international law to commit against the hostile nation acts which would otherwise have been condemned as piracy." (OED.)
Louisbourg Fleet (British): 1745.
Louisbourg Fleets: 1758.
Louisbourg Regiments: 1758.

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-M-
Malicite Indians: (See The Micmac of Megumaagee.)
Men-of-War at Louisbourg, 1745:
The Twelve British War Ships who participated in the First Siege Louisbourg.
Micmac of Megumaagee:
Minorca:
In May of 1756, Admiral John Byng (1704-57) of the British navy failed to engage the French fleet at Minorca in the Mediterranean in a manner which might have been approved by the British Admiralty. Admiral, or no, Byng was brought back to England under arrest, court marshaled and found guilty. His sentence: he was brought down to Portsmouth and was ceremoniously shot dead on the quarter deck of one of his ships, the Monarque.
Mississippi Joint Stock Company:
On September 6, 1720, the formation of the Mississippi Joint Stock Company was entered into the registers at Paris, setting up "crazed speculation" in the streets of Paris for a period of five years when the whole fantastic scheme came tumbling down at considerable expense to the French, especially the forced, imprisoned, and famished settlers at the new French colony in Louisiana. This early and disastrous stock promotion came about as the result, not of a Frenchman, but of a man from Scotland, John Law (1671-1729). John Law was originally from Edinburgh, the son of a goldsmith and banker. He went to Paris and convinced the authorities that paper money was the answer to the French government's need to finance its royal spending habits. "In 1719, Law originated a joint stock-company for reclaiming and settling lands in the Mississippi valley, called the Mississippi scheme." (Chambers.) Law proposed and tried to set up "a prodigious system of credit, of which Louisiana, with its imaginary gold mines, was made the basis. The government used every means to keep up the stock of the Mississippi Company. It was ordered that the notes of the royal bank and all certificates of public debt should be accepted at par in payment for its shares. Powers and privileges were lavished on it. It was given the monopoly of the French slave-trade, the monopoly of tobacco, the profits of the royal mint, and the farming of the revenues of the kingdom. Ingots of gold, pretending to have come from the new Eldorado of Louisiana, were displayed in the shop-windows of Paris. The fever of speculation rose to madness, and the shares of the company were inflated to monstrous and insane proportions." (See Parkman, A Half Century of Conflict (vol. 1), pp. 315-6.)

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-N-
New Style Date:
See Date.

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-O-
Old Style Date:
See Date.


(Click on letter to go to index.)
-P-
Parapet:
A parapet is "a defence of earth or stone to cover troops from the enemy's observation and fire; in permanent works, a protection against shot, raised on the top of a wall or rampart; in field-works, a bank of earth high enough to screen the defenders and thick enough to resist any shot that is likely to be discharged against it. spec. a bank of earth in front of a military trench." (See diagram under rampart.)
Pinnace:
[See Sailing Vessels of the 18th Century..]
Pipe:
A pipe is such a cask with its contents (wine, beer, cider, beef, fish, etc.), or as a measure of capacity, equivalent to half a tun, or 2 hogsheads, or 4 barrels. Like so many of the old measurement terms, there was no standard and it varied for different commodities; but, it was usually 105 imperial gallons.
Population Levels of Old Acadia:
Population Levels of Louisbourg:
Press Gang:
Prize Money:
In times of war the British navy, its officers and men, had an extra inducement to take enemy ships and their cargo. Captured ships and their cargo would be brought to a port which had a Court of Admiralty where the matter would be judged and decreed that the ship and cargo were a prize of war and to be sold with the proceeds to be Droits of the Crown, or of the Admiralty; as such, it was to be all given over to those responsible for the capture. The money was "divided into eighths, of which three went to the captain, one to the commander-in-chief, one to the officers, one to the warrant officers, and two to the crew." This system of prize money was long in place and certainly covered the period with which we are concerned about, indeed it was in place for the British during the Second World War. (Oxford Companion to Ships & the Sea.)

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-Q-
Quintal:
A weight of one hundred pounds; a hundred-weight (112 lbs.).

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-R-
Rampart:
A mound of earth raised for the defence of a place, capable of resisting cannon-shot, wide enough on the top for the passage of troops, guns, etc., and usually surmounted by a stone parapet.
Cross-section of fortress
Rated War Ships:
[See Sailing Vessels of the 18th Century..]
Regiments, Louisbourg: 1758.

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-S-
Sally:
To issue suddenly from a place of defence or retreat in order to make an attack.
Sallyport:
An opening in a fortified place for the passage of troops when making a sally. Sallyports were not peculiar to land forts, for instance a sallyport could be found on each quarter of a fire-ship, out of which the officers and crew make their escape into the boats. Also, one entered into a three-decker through a sallyport. Usually sally ports were always locked up and only opened up by special permission.
Sailing Vessels of the 18th Century:
Scurvy:
Smallpox:
Souriquois Indians:
See The Micmac of Megumaagee.

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-T-
Tea:
By 1720, great quantities of tea was making its way to the docks at London. "The China drink" had made its introduction to English tables as early as 1657. By 1720, tea was driving business in London and exploration abroad. With the general expansion of trade after 1713 the growth was more rapid. In Great Britain, we see, the annual import rose from 121,000 lbs. in 1715 to 238,000 lbs. in 1720. Tea was not near as popular in the milder climates of the southern European states. The French, nonetheless, got in on the profitable tea trade, mainly, I suggest, because, ever since 1689 the English customs duties on tea had been absurdly high. It would appear the French were illegally supplying the tea drinkers in Britain. Smuggling was a big business in the English Channel islands. In the early days most of the tea came from China, though we see that the French did establish plantations in the West Indians. It was to be 1839, before the 19th century tea trade with India took off.
Tierce:
"An old measure of capacity equivalent to one third of a pipe (usually 42 gallons old wine measure, but varying for different commodities: cf. pipe); also a cask or vessel holding this quantity, usually of wine, but also of various kinds of provisions or other goods (e.g. beef, pork, salmon, coffee, honey, sugar, tallow, tobacco); also such a cask with its contents." (OED)
Tories (See under Whigs):
Typhus:
"An acute infectious fever, characterized by great prostration and a petechial eruption; chiefly occurring in crowded tenements, etc." (OED.) "Petechial eruption" is the eruption of petechia, or small red or purple spots in the skin caused by extravasation of blood. It has many names down through history, including: Camp Fever, Jail Fever, Hospital Fever, and Ship Fever. Typhus is believed to be spread by a parasitic insect, the typhus-louse.

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-U-

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-V-

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-W-
Whigs:

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-X-

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-Y-

(Click on letter to go to index.)
-Z-
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Peter Landry
2011