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  • Samuel Ongley (1663 - d.)
    "England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975", database, FamilySearch ( : 20 March 2020), Samuel Ongley, 1663.
  • Source:
    John Burnet, Gent of Lewisham County Kent (1520 - 1618)
    Not proven to the Burnet of Barns Lineage Biography John Burnet, Gent of Lewisham County Kent was born in 1520 in St Marys District, Lewisham, County Kent, England. His parents were William Burnet...
  • William Burnet, Esq, II of Lewisham (c.1545 - 1620)
    No proof to Burnet of Barns Lineage ==Biography== William Burnet, Esq, II of Lewisham was born circa 1545 in Lewisham, Kent, England (United Kingdom). His parents were William Burnett, Esq, I and Wife ...
  • Thomas Clarke, IV of Westminster, London (1578 - 1655)
    Biography== Thomas Clarke, IV of Westminster, London was born in 1578. His parents were Thomas Clark, of Kent & London and Margaret Clark . He died in 1655 in Westminster, London, England (United Kingd...
  • William Burnett, Esq, I (c.1490 - c.1564)
    A branch of Burnet of Barns Lineage the Peebleshire lineage. William Burnet of Cringle Biography William Burnet, Esq was born circa 1528 in Kent, England, United Kingdom and was baptized in Kent, E...

Draper was originally a term for a retailer or wholesaler of cloth that was mainly for clothing. A draper may additionally operate as a cloth merchant or a haberdasher.

Drapers were an important trade guild during the medieval period, when the sellers of cloth operated out of draper's shops. However the original meaning of the term has now largely fallen out of use.

In 1724, Jonathan Swift wrote a series of satirical pamphlets in the guise of a draper called the Drapier's Letters.

Historical drapers

A number of notable people who have at one time or another worked as drapers include:

  • William Barley
  • Norman Birkett
  • Margaret Bondfield
  • Eleanor Coade (1733-1821), successful businesswoman with Coade stone
  • Antonie van Leeuwenhoek
  • John Spedan Lewis
  • Anthony Munday
  • H. G. Wells
  • Edward Whalley, regicide, cousin of Oliver Cromwell
  • George Williams, founder of the YMCA
  • John Woodward, geologist and physician to King Charles II

A draper is now defined as a highly skilled role within the fashion industry. The term is used within a fashion design or costume design studio for people tasked with creating garments or patterns by draping fabric over a dress form; draping uses a human form to physically position the cloth into a desired pattern. This is an alternative method to drafting, when the garment is initially worked out from measurements on paper.

Worshipful Company of Drapers, London

Until about 1800, an adult male practising a trade or craft in or around the City of London would almost certainly have been a member (freeman) of one of the City of London livery companies. He would probably have served an apprenticeship and been a member of a company corresponding with his occupation, almost all of which are known as the "Worshipful Company of..." their relevant trade, craft or profession.

The Worshipful Company of Drapers is one of the historic Great Twelve Livery Companies and was founded during the Middle Ages. Originally, the organisation was a trade association of wool and cloth merchants.

Tracing your Ancestors

If your ancestor was a Citizen and Draper of London he or she should appear in the Company’s membership records.

These records are available to search online via the Records of London's Livery Companies Online (ROLLCO), a freely accessible resource.

Please add apprentices and those who worked as drapers to this project.