1) A smith who works iron; that is ‘black’ metal as opposed to tin or white metal.
It is not a very early term, but occurs in an Act of 1483. In Coote, the ordinances of the London Company of Blacksmiths refer to the hole company of the crafte of Blaksmythes in 1434. Early examples in Yorkshire include: 1473 Johannes Mowbray, blaksmyth, York
1487 Johannes Bretan, blaksmyth, York
1593 John Cowper, Harthill, blacksmithe
1655 Robert Hyne of Hallam … blacksmith Sheffield. Shoeing smiths were more often called ‘farriers’ or in earlier records ‘marshal’, n.b. 1498 Willelmus Ynchbald, blaksmyth and horsmarshall, York. In earlier centuries horse-shoes were sometimes accepted as payment of a rent, e.g. 1341 ‘Richard Smyth holds a certain forge … pays 4 horse-shoes without nails’, Bradford.