The gentleman’s mistress

Illegitimate relationships and children, 1450–1640

This is an exploration of the extent and implications of the pre- and extra-marital relationships of the gentry and nobility in the period 1450–1640 in the north of England. It challenges assumptions about the extent to which such activity declined in the period in question, and hence about the impact of Protestantism and other changes to the culture of the elite. The book is a major contribution to the literature on marriage and sexual relationships, on family and kinship and their impacts on wider social networks, and on gender.

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