Medieval Occupations - Jeweler, Leatherworker, Locksmith
Medieval Occupations
(Jobs in the Medieval Age)


Jewelers held great positions of status within Medieval communities and towns. As foreign wars took troops into exotic lands they often returned with precious stones and minerals. Not knowing the value of them, it was up to the Jeweler to determine their worth.
Diamonds, emeralds, rubies and sapphires were the most common stones found during the Medieval Ages. Gold, silver and bronze were also held in high regard. The Jeweler not only held the knowledge of assessing values on these items but he was also skilled in setting the stones into rings, pendants, medallions, bracelets and amulets. The Jeweler also knew how to set the items into sword hilts and other placements that exhibited the status and wealth of their holders.
Jewelers were respected but there were many who knew the advantages of being less than honest. Stones with minimum value such as quartz, zarconia and even fools gold were not easily distinguished by the untrained eye of the public. Therefore it was common for a Jeweler to accept a valuable diamond with the promise of setting it into a ring or pendant for its owner. Simply, he would polish a quartz or zarconia of similar size and dupe the owner by giving him the worthless item. The Jeweler could then sell the original and more valuable stone and reap a quick and high profit.

Leatherworkers were common laborers but their skills were in high demand. The crafting of swordbelts, clothing, saddles and even leather armor were necessary items for Medieval life.
Though some preferred the protection and skill that guilds provided, many were able to learn the basics of the trade on their own. The tanning process was relatively simple and though most commoners knew how to do this, the products they made on their own didn't have the durability of those made by Leatherworkers.
In order to be preserved, leather had to be treated by a series of steps. Tanning, hiding and even treating the material with oils and softeners were necessary to make it last longer and worth the money charged.
Leatherworkers earned a modest and sometimes decent living depending on the quality of their skills.

Locksmiths were integral parts of Medieval society. Though most homes held little more than an internal wooden slide lock on the insides, Locksmiths became important with the developments and security of castles.
Their talents were in the beginning stages but an intricate lock that resisted the efforts of picking or tampering was soon highly valued. Criminals and the residents of dungeons often escaped rather easily when not secured with locks or shackles. To maintain security Locksmiths were trained in guilds and the secrets of their craft were kept highly guarded.
As such, Locksmiths were considered to possess the knowledge and skills of a specialty organization and as a result earned high wages.

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