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implies, the move out of infancy corresponded with a greater male presence in their upbringing, as fathers (or surrogate fathers) took the primary role of educator and disciplinarian. For young girls, the mother and the domestic sphere continued to be major influences. Greater mobility and reasoning also brought the child into contact with a broader range of influences. Instruction and correction would

in The life–cycle in Western Europe, c.1300-c.1500

One of the key aims of this book is to offer a synthesis of the main findings of current research on age. It is intended as an outline survey and consequently the scope of the book is deliberately broad: it covers two centuries, considers the large land mass of Western Europe with its diverse languages, customs and cultures, and ranges across the social spectrum. The book focuses solely on the Christian West, including consideration on the extent to which social rank influenced life expectancy, the methods and goals of upbringing, marriage patterns and funerary memorialisation. The book also demonstrates how extensive that range can be. Examples are drawn from manorial accounts, tax assessments, spiritual writings, didactic literature, romances, elegies, art and architecture. The main thrust is that age formed an essential part of a person's identity in late medieval Europe. During adolescence, men and women progressively took on their adult roles. Three chapters are devoted to educating girls. The book discusses young people's period of transition between childhood and adulthood. It draws attention to pious young women who fought against marriage and wanted a chaste life. Divergences between northern and southern Europe in terms of marriage patterns, family formation, opportunities for women and attitudes towards death and its rituals are discussed. The book shows that attitudes towards the undeveloped young meant that children had few legal responsibilities. Another aim of the book is to consider the changing opportunities and possibilities for people as they progressed through life.

stop a wife intent on adultery. In addition, the Wife’s confession owes much to the words of Dipsas, the old woman who gives cynical advice on how to turn a girl’s sexual attractions to her advantage in Ovid’s Amores . 22 Inevitably, the association of man with humanity’s rational and intellectual faculties and the affiliation of women with the carnal and the worldly was particularly pronounced in those

in Chaucer in context

(the future Louis VI) in 1081. Two more children (both girls) eventually followed, but soon it became clear that the Queen was now barren. In 1092, the King left her for Bertrade of Montfort, the wife of Fulk of Anjou, whom Philip met while touring the region. Not only was Bertrade still reasonably young and therefore likely fertile, she also was descended from a family that wielded tremendous power in the Capetian heartland. 77 From both a dynastic and political perspective, therefore, she was an ideal match for the King. Thus, with the blessing and assistance of

in Constructing kingship

’. 28 There are, of course, rules that govern these portals – rules that are rather spectacularly broken when a little girl named Lucy walks through the back of a wardrobe in wartime England and discovers a faun. Ultimately, the narrative resolves itself in a medievalist conclusion (all four children, at the end of The Lion, the

in Affective medievalism
Natural science and intellectual disability

). 76 Howell suggested that Katharine might have been affected by a degenerative disorder which would have been symptomless from birth until signs begin emerging several months afterwards, with such a disease pattern perhaps resulting from an infection or the late effects of brain damage at parturition. The likely candidate is Rett syndrome, a rare disease which affects only girls, and which is marked by the onset of developmental retardation (such as inability to speak) after apparently normal development in the first year. 77 Aetiologies

in Fools and idiots?
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practising that shamefastness, advocating and describing ‘manipulations of body and mind’ that are intended to intensify and communicate a woman's sense of shame. 7 A sense of shame is a matter of mental and behavioural practice in these texts: learning to develop watchfulness against shame is how women can construct an honourable habit for themselves. I begin by situating conduct literature in relation to the education of girls and young women in medieval England, and in relation to the chaste ideals to

in Practising shame

, especially in the fifteenth century, we need to remember that the texts with which they were educated did not differ from those of kings and princes. 9 Mirrors for princes were primarily produced for boys and men. There were fewer such texts for girls, but one that people read in fifteenth-century England was The Book of the Knight of the Tower , written by and named after a French knight, Geoffrey de la

in Gentry culture in late-medieval England
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nine; the French used enfant for boys under twelve and girls under seven. In Middle English literature, the words ‘child’ and, to a lesser extent, ‘infant’ were in widespread use by the late fourteenth century. While both could have a general use, like the modern-day ‘girl’ or ‘kid’, they were more specifically applied to cover the ages up to puberty, with ‘infaunt’ becoming used in the fifteenth

in The life–cycle in Western Europe, c.1300-c.1500

sense of completion. Nevertheless, the body had largely shaken off its childish incapacity and was becoming more adult-looking and gender-defined. Both male and female bodies were becoming physically stronger and capable of reproduction: medieval society generally assumed that menstruation would begin in girls between twelve and fifteen. 7 In reality, not all youths showed their bodies off to the best

in The life–cycle in Western Europe, c.1300-c.1500