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Philippa Maddern

berthe ’. 1 Clearly, he expected immediate understanding of the term ‘gentilman’, and sympathy for his claim that gentle status and imprisonment were radically incompatible. Yet his easy assumption of unproblematic understanding is not shared by modern historians of late medieval English society, who have made many attempts at explicating the concept of gentility, whether embodied in the individual

in Gentry culture in late-medieval England
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Medical culture and identity in provincial England, c.1760–1850
Author: Michael Brown

This book talks about late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century English medical culture, a study of what it meant to be a doctor and how this changed over time. It presents a brief overview of the social, economic and cultural landscape of late eighteenth-century York. Medical culture and identity in late eighteenth-century York took shape within a social landscape shaped by the values of gentility, polite sociability and civic belonging. The book examines the role of intellectual liberality, demonstrating how public displays of polite and 'ornamental' learning were central to the performance of medico-gentility. It explores the incipient demise of this culture. Through a close reading of a scandal which enveloped the York Lunatic Asylum, it also explores the ways in which medical identities founded upon gentility and politeness were critically undermined by the political and social factionalism. The book looks at medical involvement in the provincial scientific movement, examining how local medical men positioned themselves relative to the so-called 'march of intellect', the cultural and ideological alignment between science and social reform. It continues this analysis in relation to the cholera epidemic of 1832 and other medico-political activities. The book considers how the professional dominion over healthcare was forged by the dual processes of inclusion and exclusion. It discusses the foundation of the Medical School in 1834 against the trial, in the same year, of a local salesman for James Morison's 'Universal Vegetable Medicine'.

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Empire and domestic material culture, 1840–1910
Author: Dianne Lawrence

Missing familiar faces, practices and places is a commonplace amongst all who relocate, an inevitable response as old as human migration itself. During the latter half of the nineteenth century and the first decades of the twentieth, colonial expansion prompted increasing numbers of genteel women to establish their family homes in far-flung corners of the world. This book explores ways in which the women's values, expressed through their personal and household possessions, dress, living rooms, gardens and food, were instrumental in constructing various forms of genteel society in alien settings. The book examines the transfer and adaptation of British female gentility across the British Empire, including Africa, New Zealand and India. In so doing, it offers a revised reading of the behaviour, motivations and practices of female elites, thereby calling into doubt the oft-stated notion that such women were a constraining element in new societies. The central focus is upon the physical and the social (and also racial) environments of settlers and their colonial territories. The creation of the living room was a critical space on the basis of which a woman would be judged as to whether she had succeeded in creating a respectable, refined and genteel household. The book also highlights that food and the repetitive nature of its sourcing, preparation and presentation generated a multitude of ways for signalling genteel distinction. Scrutinising the practices of female gentility also highlights how the culture's innate sensibility to social conditions made it such a controlling device in colonial society.

After many years at the margins of historical investigation, the late medieval English gentry are widely regarded as an important and worthy subject for academic research. This book aims to explore the culture of the wide range of people whom we might include within the late medieval gentry, taking in all of landed society below the peerage, from knights down to gentlemen, and including those aspirants to gentility who might under traditional socio-economic terms be excluded from the group. It begins by exploring the origins of, and influences on, the culture of the late medieval gentry, thus contributing to the ongoing debate on defining the membership of this group. The book considers the gentry's emergence as a group distinct from the nobility, and looks at the various available routes to gentility. Through surveys of the gentry's military background, administrative and political roles, social behaviour, and education, it seeks to provide an overview of how the group's culture evolved, and how it was disseminated. The book offers a broad view of late medieval gentry culture, which explores, reassesses and indeed sometimes even challenges the idea that members of the gentry cultivated their own distinctive cultural identity. The evolution of the gentleman as a peer-assessed phenomenon, gentlemanly behaviour within the chivalric tradition, the education received by gentle children, and the surviving gentry correspondence are also discussed. Although the Church had an ambivalent attitude toward artistic expression, much of the gentry's involvement with the visual arts was religious in focus.

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Gentility and the performance of self
Dianne Lawrence

terrain. This work scrutinises the processes involved in relocation and resettlement as experienced by such women as Mrs Hobhouse, Mrs Malloy and Mrs Slatter – women of genteel persuasion. Although the model for their aspirations and practices may have been a British one, as experienced first hand or through the filter of preceding generations of migrants, local circumstances called forth notable adaptation and modification of existing norms, and hence the evolution of new forms of gentility. It will be shown that for genteel

in Genteel women
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Tobias B. Hug

defending the nobility, basing their arguments on a very traditional ideal. In terms of contemporary demographic and socio-economic realities, however, their desire to defend a supposedly ancient tradition of gentility was often based on mere illusion. ‘[O]n average’, states J. A. Sharpe, ‘a peerage or gentry family died out in the direct male line every three generations’, so that newcomers had to be recruited, either by inheritance through distant male relatives or females and the absorption of their husbands.1 Like the rest of society, the nobility was not protected

in Impostures in early modern England
Raluca Radulescu and Alison Truelove

those aspirants to gentility who might under traditional socio-economic terms be excluded from the group. In regarding the gentry as an amorphous, ever-fluctuating group of individuals, we are able to approach the task of examining its culture less tied to the preconceptions about status, and the privileges it confers, which condition more traditional approaches. The book begins by exploring the origins

in Gentry culture in late-medieval England
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Jan Broadway

epistle indicated that he saw his work as firmly in the tradition of Elyot and Ascham. Peacham was to remain an authority on polite conduct for many years. Richard Brathwaite was a prolific writer of courtesy books, who was drawn from the same level of gentry society as Sir Richard Berkeley. A country gentleman, deputy lieutenant of Westmorland and justice of the peace, Brathwaite’s English Gentleman (1630) and English Gentlewoman (1631) helped to propagate the humanist ideal of gentility to a wider audience.10 Histories, advices and courtesy books were all recommended to

in ‘No historie so meete’
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Raluca Radulescu

individuals, ‘whose tastes and interests determined the final form of the volume’. 11 Gentility Among the most well-known Middle English texts dealing with the topic of gentility are Chaucer’s poem ‘Gentilesse’ and his ‘Wife of Bath’s Tale’. The portraits of the Knight and the Franklin in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales have also been used by literary critics

in Gentry culture in late-medieval England
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Maurice Keen

fourteenth century were not a new class: there had always been people like them about. What was new was their recognition as being of the gentility, a recognition visibly expressed in the extension to esquires – who were not knights and might not aspire to be such – of the right to coats of arms, the traditional chivalrous ensigns of lineage and of a family history of honourable service. Later, in the

in Gentry culture in late-medieval England