For well over twenty years since I first started my infatuation with the Regency Era, I have maintained a lexicon to help me decipher Georgette Heyer (follow the link to Frederica, my favorite of her books), and others. Then as I began to write in the genre in the years 2000, I put more emphasis on it.
I have seen a few others on the web, but I have not seen any as complete as the one maintained at Regency Assembly Press that I have contributed to.
With the emphasis that has been placed recently on Research there, with not only the Lexicon, but the Timelines, lives of the Prime Ministers, Dance Instruction and Regency Era Money, it is a growing resource for all Regency readers and writers. I urge everyone to have a look as it continues to grow.
I also provide here the next letter of the alphabet to entice you to visit that page. Or even bookmark it for when you need to look up a particular Regency term.
- Impost Takers–Usurers who attend the gaming-tables, and lend money at great premiums.
- Impudent Stealing–Cutting out the backs of coaches, and robbing the seats.
- Impure–A modern term for a lady of easy virtue.
- In One’s Black Books–Out of favor.
- In Quite Deep–In debt.
- In The Suds–To be in trouble.
- Indies–Black Indies; Newcastle.
- India Wipe–A silk handkerchief.
- Indorser–A sodomite. To indorse with a cudgel; to drub or beat a man over the back with a stick, to lay Cane upon Abel.
- Inkle Weavers–Supposed to be a very brotherly set of people; ‘as great as two inkle weavers’ being a proverbial saying.
- Inlaid–Well inlaid; in easy circumstances, rich or well to pass.
- Innocents–One of the innocents; a weak or simple person, man or woman.
- Incognitas–Higher class prostitutes.
- Inexpressibles–A man’s very tight (and very revealing) trousers or breeches–Also called unmentionables.
- Inside and Outside–The inside of a **** and the outside of a gaol.
- Irish Apricots–Potatoes. It is a common joke against the Irish vessels, to say they are loaded with fruit and timber, that is, potatoes and broomsticks.
- Irish Assurance–A bold forward behaviour: as being dipt in the river Styx was formerly supposed to render persons invulnerable, so it is said that a dipping in the river Shannon totally annihilates bashfulness; whence arises the saying of an impudent Irishman, that he has been dipt in the Shannon.
- Irish Beauty–A woman with two black eyes.
- Irish Evidence–A false witness.
- Irish Legs–Thick legs, jocularly styled the Irish arms. It is said of the Irish women, that they have a dispensation from the pope to wear the thick end of their legs downwards.
- Irish Toyles–Thieves who carry about pins, laces, and other pedlars wares, and under the pretence of offering their goods to sale, rob houses, or pilfer any thing they can lay hold of.
- Iron–Money in general. To polish the king’s iron with one’s eyebrows; to look out of grated or prison windows, or, as the Irishman expresses them, the iron glass windows. Iron doublet; a prison. See Stone Doublet.
- Ironmonger’s Shop–To keep an ironmonger’s shop by the side of a common, where the sheriff sets one up; to be hanged in chains. Iron-bound; laced. An iron-bound hat; a silver-laced hat.
- Island–He drank out of the bottle till he saw the island; the island is the rising bottom of a wine bottle, which appears like an island in the centre, before the bottle is quite empty.
- Itchland, or Scratchland–Scotland.
- Ivories–Teeth. How the swell flashed his ivories; how the gentleman shewed his teeth.
- Ivory-turners–Gambling cheat and swindler.
- Ivy Bush–Like an owl in an ivy bush; a simile for a meagre or weasel-faced man, with a large wig, or very bushy hair.