CHESHIRE-L ArchivesArchiver > CHESHIRE > 2005-11 > 1133196496
Subject: [CHS] : Ancient Inventory (1611) - Lesson 1 = Numbers
Date: Mon, 28 Nov 2005 11:48:16 EST
Here is a little experiment regarding the Inventory of my oldest ancestor,
James Cowper. This was compiled by four of his Friends/Neighbours when he was
near, or at the point of his death. These Friends/Neighbours were known as
"Appraisers". All of his Goods and Chattels were listed item by item, in the
format of :
Quantity, Description and Value.
Lesson 1. I had to decipher the method used to specify "Quantity" in
Arabic numerals were not used in England until the 16th century, and even
after then Roman numerals continued to be used.
Most people today are still familiar with Roman numerals. However, you will
find them represented in a slightly different way in documents written in Old
English. In particular, lower case was used.
Roman Old English
l = 1 j = 1 or written as “one”
ll = 2 ij = 2 or written as “two”
lV or llll = 4 iiij = 4 (not usually iv) or written as “
V = 5 v = 5
X = 10 x = 10
This is the end of Lesson 1. In case you find this of no interest - I will
not proceed to the next Lesson I had to learn in order to decipher the
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