Thanks to Dr. Peter Ferdinando - For finding this information and providing me with a copy of the document.
When I took my apprenticeship, it was for three years, paid college, training school and on-site work. Isaac had a very different time. Here are the details from his Deed or Indenture:
Isaac's Apprenticeship Indentures
This Indenture Witnesseth that Isaac Ferdinando son of Isaac Ferdinando late of London, Merchant, dead, doth put himself apprentice to George Gilbert Citizen and BLACKSMITH of London, to learn his Art: and with him (after the manner of an Apprentice) to serve from the day of (Illegible assumed 3rd November 1693) unto the full term of (illegible) years, from thence next following, to be fully compleat and ended. During which the said Apprentice his said Master faithfully shall serve, his Secrets keep, his lawful Commandments every where gladly do. He shall do no damage to his said Master, nor see to be done to others, but that he to his power shall lett or forthwith give warning to his said Master of the same. He shall not waste the Goods of his said Master, nor lend them unlawfully to any. He shall not commit fornication, nor contract Matrimony within the said Term. he shall not play at Cards, Dice, Tables, or any other unlawful Games, whereby his said Master may have any (lots/loss). With his own Goods or others, during the said Term, without licence of his said Master he shall neither buy nor sell. He shall not haunt Taverns, or Play-Houses, nor absent himself from his said Master's service day nor night unlawfully: But in all things as a faithful Apprentice he shall behave himself towards his said Master, and all his, during the said Term. And the said Master his Apprentice in the same Art which he useth, by the best means that he can, shall teach and instruct, or cause to be taught and instructed, finding unto his said Apprentice, meat, drink, apparel, Lodging, and all other necessities, according to the custom of the City of London, during the said Term. And to the true performance of all and every said Covenants and Agreements, either of the said parties bindeth himself unto the other by these presents. In witness whereof the parties abovenamed to these indentures interchangeably have put their Hands and Seals, The third day of November in the fifth Year of the Reign of our Sovereign Lord and Lady, King William and Queen Mary, of England, &c. Anno Dom. 1693
It is signed With the mark of Isaac Ferdinando and looks like a counter signature by a James Oliver (possibly the Notary).
I Thought I had it Tough!
Reading this I wondered if the poor lad was actually allowed to do anything without asking permission! Isaac received the Freedom of the City in April 1701 so the term of his apprenticeship would have been less than 8 years! Apprenticeships were normally seven years. A Free Man was over the age of 21 years and often the Apprenticeship would end after having attained this age.
David J Ferdinando
Apprentice Blacksmith Gallery
Follow this link to some images concerning the Blacksmith's Trade.