A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921.

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Key to Arrangement and Abbreviations.

  1. In accordance with the Census, 1921, classification, the occupational terms will be found grouped in Orders and Sub-Orders under code numbers from 000 to 989. Orders XXIV and XXV , Persons Employed in Public Administration and Defence and Professional Occupations (code numbers 800 to 879), have been omitted. The occupational arrangement is such that similar and related occupations are grouped together on the basis of the material worked in, the process performed or the service rendered. Within each Order the code numbers follow the sequence of operations in the actual processes of manufacture, etc. Hence in a large number of cases the occupational arrangement approximates to an industrial classification. For example, Order XII (code numbers 350 to 399) covers the whole of the workers in the textile industry (with the exception of the maintenance staff, clerks, transport workers, warehousemen and packers) in the natural order of the various processes.
  2. For anyone unfamiliar with the Census classification the easiest way to find a required definition is to consult the alphabetical Index at the end of the volume, where the code number under which the term appears will be found. Under each code number the occupations are listed alphabetically.
  3. Occupational terms more or less synonymous have been linked together in one common definition. The most usual or most important term in such a group is placed first in heavy or Clarendon type, while the less important synonyms and local variants are printed in italics.
  4. Particular designations of an occupational term will be found appended to the definition of the principal occupation in cases where the duties involved do not warrant separate definitions.
  5. When a term is localised in its usage, or when the duties to be defined differ by locality, the name or names of the localities are indicated in italics.
  6. The distinction between the use of the terms "see . . . " and "as for. . . " may be explained by an illustration. The entry "fitter, loom, see loom builder" denotes that "loom fitter" is a synonym of "loom -builder" of less common occurrence and that the definition will be found against "loom builder." On the other hand "steam cultivator attendant, as for steam plough attendant" indicates that, while the two terms are not synonymous, the duties involved are similar mutatis mutandis.
  7. In order to avoid unnecessary repetition in the definitions, and also as a means of linking one related occupation with another, a definition will often read as follows:—"riffler, rifflermaker; a file forger q.v. who makes special concave forgings for files, called rifflers." Here the abbreviation q.v. (which see) refers the reader to the definition of "file forger" for the complete definition of "riffler." When it is important to distinguish between two occupations often denoted by the same occupational term, or when one definition is an interesting commentary on the other, the abbreviation, cf. (compare) is used instead of q.v.
  8. When a term is defined in two or more ways, either because of differences in processes or because there are two or more operations to be performed each as a full-time occupation, the separate definitions are enumerated in one general definition thus—(i), (ii), (iii)...
  9. As a result of the enquiries which have gone to the defining of the occupational terms in this Dictionary it has been discovered that a number of the terms appearing in the 1921 Census Classification of Occupations, would have been more appropriately classified under other code numbers. A number of the alterations thus discovered to be desirable have been incorporated in the classification of Occupations published by the Census Authorities in 1924; other proposed alterations which have emerged .since that date and which could not be embodied in that volume are set out in an appendix to this volume. Adjustments will probably be made at the next Census in the occupational grouping of workers covered by such terms, which are indicated in the Dictionary thus : (‡).

Ministry of Labour.

July, 1927.

This material was published under Crown Copyright in 1927 and is now therefore in the public domain.
This edition prepared by Peter Christian, June 2016.