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Physical and emotional comfort in the country house, England and Sweden c.1680-1820

Description Most homes in the past were not elite, wealthy interiors complete with high fashion furnishings, designed by well-known architects and designers, as many domestic histories often seem to have assumed. As this book makes clear, there were in fact an enormous variety of house interiors in England during the period , reflecting the location, status and gender of particular householders, as well as their changing attitudes, tastes and aspirations. By focusing on non-metropolitan homes, which represented the majority of households in England, this study highlights the need for historians to look beyond prevailing attitudes that often reduce interiors to generic descriptions based on high fashions of the decorative arts.

Instead it shows how numerous social and cultural influences affected the manner in which homes were furnished and decorated. Issues such as the availability of goods, gender, regional taste, income, the second-hand market, changing notions of privacy and household hierarchies and print culture, could all have a significant impact on domestic furnishing. The study ends with a discussion of how domestic interiors of historic properties have been presented and displayed in modern times, highlighting how competing notions of the past can cloud as well as illuminate the issue.

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Combining cultural history and qualitative analysis of evidence, this book presents a new way of looking at 'ordinary' and 'provincial' homes that enriches our understanding of English domestic life of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Product details Format Hardback pages Dimensions x x Lady in Waiting Anne Glenconner. Add to basket.

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McMafia Misha Glenny. The Voynich Manuscript Deborah E. The Ascent of Money Niall Ferguson. Other books in this series. Furniture-Makers and Consumers in England, Dr. Buying for the Home Margaret Ponsonby. Retailing and the Language of Goods, Nancy Cox. By Ashgate. By Praeger. Visual Merchandising: The Image of Selling.

By Louisa Iarocci. There has been a great deal of interest in masculine clothing, examining both its production and consumption, and the ways in which it was used to create individual identities, from onwards. This book studies the interaction between producers and consumers at a key period in the development of the ready-made clothing industry. Use Flubit Points. Learn More!

Select Crypto. In , a rather curious provision was entered into English law which attempted to restrict the scope of bankruptcy to certain trades or professions. And how was this broad definition interpreted prior to the nineteenth century? In order to answer these questions, our focus must turn to contemporary attitudes towards debt — and particularly credit — in relation to trade.

The trading distinction was built upon the assumption that only overseas traders were liable to the sorts of losses, and used the sorts of credit, that the law sort sought to deal with. In this manner, the jurisdiction of bankruptcy was intended to be kept away from the landowning community and limited only to the business world.

Perhaps an oversimplified categorisation of a sixteenth-century trader would be any person who was engaged in manufacturing, or the buying and selling of goods on a self-employed basis. In contrast, a non-trader would be any person in employment, engaged in a recognised profession, or occupying the position of landowner or farmer. However, as we move through the seventeenth century, such distinctions were very hard to maintain and implement in a consistent manner, not least because of the way in which the economy changed and developed during this period.

In , if credit was used mostly by merchants, then by it was widely accepted that credit was vital to all businesses, not to mention being used extensively at home as well. With no legislation being passed that explicitly addressed this issue, judges and lawyers were compelled to work towards their own definitions of a trader. In so doing, much of their attention focused on the particular nature of buying and the particular purpose of selling. For example, one rule stated that you could not be classified as a trader if you did not buy the materials you used. This point can clearly be applied to farmers and landowners who sold the goods they made on their estate, and it was accepted throughout this period that farmers were categorically outside of the jurisdiction of bankruptcy.

Yet, despite attempts by legal experts to try to define and categorise a trader, litigation throughout the eighteenth century demonstrates just how complex this issue had become. One such example can be found from a case entered in the Court of Chancery in As a prominent farmer, Sabb should have been outside the jurisdiction of bankruptcy. Broadly speaking, as the major creditors, the plaintiffs argued that Sabb was not simply a farmer, but got his principal living through the buying and selling of hops.

What is clear from this case, is that the plaintiffs are trying to persuade the court that Sabb was not simply a farmer, but got his principal living through buying and selling, and therefore should be considered a trader within the true intent and meaning of the statutes. Obviously, on the opposing side, Sabb and the other defendants are trying to explain to the court that, as a prominent land owner and farmer, it is clear that Sabb cannot be declared a bankrupt as he is engaged in an occupation that has always been excluded as a non-trader.

This is just one example taken from a range of suits in which the scope, jurisdiction and procedure of bankruptcy are examined in the Court of Chancery.

Home, Business, and Household

Taken in isolation, these suits give us an insight into the way in which individuals dealt with specific issues and attempted to circumnavigate problems within the bankruptcy process by manipulating the legal system for their own benefit. Taken collectively, they demonstrate that the ideals established by legal experts did not always conform neatly to the practical realties of day-to-day experience.

What becomes clear, is that the trading distinction and its subsequent interpretation was far too complex to simply be reduced to a list of acceptable and unacceptable occupations. Even an occupation such as farming — which was excluded almost as an intention of the earliest bankruptcy statutes — contained specific working activities that by the eighteenth century, many considered to be a staple and important part of trade. Aidan Collins is a third year PhD student at the University of York interested in all aspects of the credit-based economy across the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

His research explores bankruptcy proceedings at different stages of the legal process within Chancery to illuminate social and cultural aspects of financial failure during this period.


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Numbers 54, 55 and 56 Fossgate were for many years the trading premises of the York Army and Navy Stores. The buildings housing the store were much older c. In the final few days of trading we were able to photograph the shop and storage areas, and to talk with the current owner to reflect on the loss of a local landmark.

In the aftermath of the First World War there had been a flourishing trade selling the tons of army surplus — one of the less-heralded peace dividends. Items designed and made for military purposes were practical and often of superior quality. New or used, and usually cheap, this was workwear at its best.