Mystery professions from 19th century Italian records

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Mystery professions from 19th century Italian records

Postby jwazevedo » 14 Apr 2009, 04:48

In the process of reading the various records of ancestors from the Como region, I've run across four professions that I can't translate. I've snipped the four from the "di professione" of four different documents so that you can see them all together here. I'm reading these as:
cursore
segantino (??)
scrivano (scribe? What is the function in society then?)
gabelloto

Can anyone shed some light on what these people did for a living?

Thanks!
Jerry
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Re: Mystery professions from 19th century Italian records

Postby Lucap » 14 Apr 2009, 08:19

I think you are able to understand italian, so here some links which can explane you the meaning:
Scrivano: http://www2.comune.roma.it/museodiroma. ... scheda.htm
Gabellotto: http://209.85.129.132/search?q=cache:WX ... clnk&gl=it
Segantino: http://209.85.129.132/search?q=cache:fI ... clnk&gl=it
Cursore = messo comunale (municipal messenger)

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Re: Mystery professions from 19th century Italian records

Postby PeterTimber » 14 Apr 2009, 14:28

SCRIVANO=Clerk is the accepted translation. =Peter=
~Peter~
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Re: Mystery professions from 19th century Italian records

Postby jwazevedo » 14 Apr 2009, 15:27

Thanks a bunch for those links, Luca, and for your confidence in my language skills, which I'll try to live up to. I can see that besides the various dictionaries that I consulted, I should have just done a web search before going to the forum. It's humbling to know so little.

And thank you too, Peter, for your addition.

Best,
Jerry
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Re: Mystery professions from 19th century Italian records

Postby PeterTimber » 14 Apr 2009, 15:46

It was not an additon it was a direct response to your inquiry. =Peter=
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Re: Mystery professions from 19th century Italian records

Postby Lucap » 14 Apr 2009, 15:47

PeterTimber wrote:SCRIVANO=Clerk is the accepted translation. =Peter=

Yes scrivano has, generally, the meaning of town clerk.
The link i posted above concerns a particular sort of scrivano that was present (sometimes) in the towns in the past centuries: a man who writed letters for persons who weren't able to do it (that was the 98% of the population!).

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Re: Mystery professions from 19th century Italian records

Postby jwazevedo » 14 Apr 2009, 16:28

As usual, the understanding of language is really about the understanding of culture, which I find fascinating. So a "gabellotto" would rent tracts of agricultural land and the sublet it in smaller parcels, which would be useful if people didn't have much money for their own land. A "scrivano" might have been a scribe that helped a largely illiterate population. The "segantino", lumber manufacturer, was a profession that showed up in some documents from the east side of Lake Como; I'm imagining a treed landscape. And a "cursore", the messenger, would have important in days before email and fax. Interesting. Thanks.

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