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Poser 321 - Window tax roll for Crail, 1748

The window tax was first imposed on Scotland in 1748 and this week's poser is an extract taken from the first window tax roll for Crail (National Records of Scotland, E326/1/42 page 19).

The handwriting is fairly typical for a late eighteenth century hand and, at first sight seems neat and even but some problems arise, especially with personal names and place names. Letters with acenders (l, t, d, b, h) can be hard to distinguish from one another, especially without the use of a horizontal stroke in the case of the letter t. Another issue is that the clerk is very economical with the pen when it comes to writing certain vowels, such as e. There are a few abbreviated names and two occurrences of the scharfes-s. Elaborate capital letters and interference by descending and ascending letters can confuse and (a perennial problem with handwriting in pages with set table columns) a tendency to crush words to fit into a column.

Extract from the window tax roll for the County of Fife, 1748 (National Records of Scotland, E326/1/42 page 19).

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This week's question: which three residents of Crail paid the most tax (and had the most windows)?

For help with reading the poser, use our coaching manual. The following areas may be of particular assistance.

Scharfes s
Letter t

Answer to this week's poser