Search results

You are looking at 1 - 10 of 14 items for :

  • "gentry women" x
  • Refine by access: All content x
Clear All
Author: Jennifer Ward

This book provides a broad-ranging and accessible coverage of the role of noble women in medieval England. Throughout the Middle Ages the men and women of the nobility and gentry occupied a position at the top of the social hierarchy. Marriage for noble and gentry children was arranged by their families, with the participation on occasion of their lords and of the king, and it was relatively rare for the children themselves to take matters into their own hands. As with marriage, the woman's relationship to her husband and children has to be seen within the framework of canon and common law, the Church being concerned with the marriage itself, and the royal courts with property. The crucial importance of land as the source of wealth for noble and gentry society has been underlined in the discussion of both marriage and the family. Women's landholding is well documented, the amount of land in their hands varying according to the accidents of birth and fortune. The household was the centre and hub of the lady's life and activities, and can be regarded as a community in its own right. Men and women of the nobility and gentry living in the world were encouraged to practise their religion through attendance at Mass, private prayer on behalf of themselves and the dead, works of charity, pilgrimage, and material support of the Church. Although many women's lives followed a conventional pattern, great variety existed within family relationships, and individuality can also be seen in religious practices and patronage. Piety could take a number of different forms, whether a woman became a nun, a vowess or a noted philanthropist and benefactor to religious institutions.

Abstract only
Jennifer Ward

to plead in the courts and make her own decisions. The way in which a widow was often expected to take over immediately after her husband’s death indicates an acceptance in society of her practical abilities. In order to understand the position of noble and gentry women, it is essential to see them in the context of their families and of the law of the land; changes in feudal lordship

in Women of the English Nobility and Gentry, 1066-1500
Raluca Radulescu and Alison Truelove

he asserts, ‘ladies played a major role in sustaining and transmitting gentility’. 30 His work, and that of many others, also testifies to the fact that they could help to formulate its character. 31 It is clear throughout this volume that the skills of gentry women as household managers and peacemakers, in particular, helped to maintain and augment the status of their families. Thus Tolley in Chapter 10 notes

in Gentry culture in late-medieval England
Abstract only
Alison Truelove

level of intimacy that she may not have regarded as appropriate for dictation to a scribe. Gentry women such as Margery Paston and Elizabeth Stonor clearly recognised the value of being able to write, and used their albeit limited abilities to add a personal dimension to their correspondence. That their writing skills were not more developed, at least when compared to those of their male counterparts

in Gentry culture in late-medieval England
Tim Thornton and Katharine Carlton

plague while they live’. In addition, by identifying extra-marital sexual activity as a contagion, which originated with Eve in the Garden of Eden, Smith seems to have identified women as the instigators of such immorality, which could only be cured by divorce for the benefit of the innocent party. A survey of the surviving York ecclesiastical court records suggests that gentry women were three times less likely to appear as defendants in immorality or adultery cases than gentlemen.2 A more detailed reading of witness testimonies, however, indicates a more complex

in The gentleman’s mistress
Abstract only
Tim Shaw

temporary residence in regular religious institutions, work on the social status of office holders in a group of female religious houses in the diocese of Norwich between 1350 and 1540 has revealed a figure of around 64 per cent from the ‘lower or parish gentry’ within the population of these houses. 48 Here, gentry women would have been instructed to be able to perform the daily round of liturgical

in Gentry culture in late-medieval England
Abstract only
Finding and remembering Elizabeth Isham
Isaac Stephens

relationship that Elizabeth had with her mother and sister, and their deaths – the former in 1625 and the latter in 1636 – had a profound impact on why she decided to put pen to paper and compose her ‘Booke of Rememberance’. When read together with the Isham papers, the autobiography is also a wonderful source for examining the lives of the seventeenth-century gentry, and reveals in vivid detail Elizabeth’s relationship with both her father and brother, showing how she negotiated gendered expectations for gentry women and their place within a society defined by idealized

in The gentlewoman’s remembrance
Coping with separation during the Napoleonic Wars (the Fremantle papers, 1800–14)
Elaine Chalus

networks: her parents died in 1799; her three sisters were still teenagers and living with guardians in London; and her female networks, especially among the local gentry women in Buckinghamshire, were commensurately recent. It would have been surprising had Betsey not felt anxious and alone under such circumstances. She characteristically refrained from complaining in her letters, however, and had no patience with officers’ wives like Mrs Blackwood who bewailed her husband’s absence: ‘had I begun to lament in the same way we must have sung a dismal ditty together’.14

in A new naval history
Abstract only
Gemma Allen

consideration of the actual roles of noble and gentry women.71 Throughout this study, the sisters’ relationships with the powerful men in their lives receive attention, considering, for example, how Mildred’s involvement in diplomatic circles mirrors the concerns of her privy councillor husband, William Cecil. Furthermore, this study builds on increasing interest in the educational background of political actors and their use of language; Stephen Alford, for example, has explored the importance of William Cecil’s education in his political career.72 This book highlights the

in The Cooke sisters
Emma Gleadhill

legitimacy of a ruler and their lands. 15 Popular gifts included guns, tapestries, clocks, snuff-boxes and porcelain. Another preferred gift was a portrait of a ruler, which took the form of either a pendant comprised of a painted miniature in a precious frame, or a portrait medal. Noble and gentry women also travelled with gifts in Britain and Europe. Throughout the eighteenth century it was common, even expected, for women to exchange gifts with the women they met during their travels and to send gifts

in Taking travel home