Scottish Genealogy

Monday, 2 July 2012

Old Scots Words - Custumar

Today is week three of my list of old Scottish words and so today we are on to the letter 'c':


This one is slightly more familiar to the modern eye than the words from our previous weeks have been.  A 'custumar' is a customs officer, and the word appears very frequently in records from the 1300s onwards.

You might see it used to describe an individual who fulfilled this role, as it does in this record from the National Records of Scotland (NRS):

NRS E73/3 'Abstract account of George Archibald, custumar' Nov 1620-Nov 1621

or in this example from the Treasury Accounts from 1491 when it appears as a plural:

'to charge the schireffis, balʒeis and custummaris of Stirlingschyre to the Chekar'

[to charge the sheriffs, bailies and customs officers of Stirlingshire to the Exchequer]

The Dictionary of the Scots Language has examples of its use dating from the 1300s to the 1600s, and if you ever delve into the Exchequer Records at the NRS, then it is a word that you will see a lot of.

No comments:

Post a Comment