Dictionary for the Story of James Black

Below is a special dictionary of words used in the Story of James Black. The definitions or meaning given to a word is specific to its use in this article. Definitions are given in the simplest words possible. It is hoped that this dictionary will make the article more accessible to all students with various levels of reading skills.


apprentice, apprenticeship -- a person who for several years works for and learns from a skilled worker, like a shoemaker

authorities -- government officials, like the police

blacksmith -- a person who makes things like horseshoes with iron metal

Bladesmith -- a person who makes very good knives

ceded -- when one nation gives land to another nation usually by treaty

documented, documentation -- papers which give proof of something

enduring -- lasting for a long time

emigrated -- to leave one's homeland to go settle in a new homeland

estate -- property and money left by a person who had died

ferry boat -- a boat that carries people across a river that has no bridge

foremost -- first, the most important

forging -- making tools or knives by heating and shaping metals

frontier -- new land that is not widely settled yet

gleaming -- to shine with light

gandeur -- to appear large and grand

grieving -- to feel sad

indentured -- a person who works for someone for a fixed number of years and who is not free to quit or leave

Indian Territory -- land set aside for Indians in what is now Oklahoma

inquest jury -- a group of men who look at evidence to see if a crime has been committeed

knifesmith -- a person who is an expert in making knives

overseer -- a person who is in charge of something like keeping a road in good condition

patrol -- to travel over an area in order to keep law and order, like a policeman walking an area

picturesque -- an area, like a town, with buildings that are older and beautiful but also unusual

pioneer -- an early settler of a frontier area

prosper -- to have money

receipt -- a paper that proves someone paid for or gave something of value to another person

reputation -- having a good name or ability respected by other people

silversmith -- an expert who uses silver to make things

spectacular -- striking in appearance or of unusally good quality

steamboat -- a boat with a steam engine that uses a large paddle wheel at its rear to push through the water

tempering -- heating and cooling metal to make it stronger and better

vain -- (in vain) not a success, useless

ward -- a person who cannot care for himself and who is protected and cared for by legal means

wraith -- a ghost