1) In Latin documents ‘janitor’ was the word for the door-keeper or porter of an abbey, derived from the Latin word for ‘door’.

This was traditionally where money was distributed to the poor, made possible by charitable donations. The by-name occurs in early charters: 1190-1206 Nicholao Janitore , Healaugh

c. 1216 Ricardo Janitore , Pontefract. Walter de Dodemore was the janitor of Scarborough castle in 1274-5 and in c .1293 Thomas Schayf of Ingerthorpe granted to God, et Beatć Marić et janitori de Fontibus, ad sustentationem pauperum ibidem ad portam convenientium annuum redditum duorum denariorum . Examples of ‘janitor’ in the OED date only from c .1630 but it had stabilised in York much earlier: 1401 William del Hall, janitor of St Mary’s Abbey

1461 John Staneburn, janitor, Mons. bl. Mary , York.

dates 1190-1206 1216 1274-1275 1293 1401 1461

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