Adolescent Girlhood in Eighteenth-Century Ireland

  • Mary O’Dowd


This chapter draws on modern ideas about adolescence to explore writings by girls in eighteenth-century Ireland. The central source used for this analysis is the journal of Mary Shackelton Leadbeater, which she began when she was 11 years of age. The format and tone of Shackleton Leadbeater’s journal changed as she moved into her late teens and began to engage more with the public world of the Irish Quaker community. The chapter also draws on writings by other Irish women to chart the transition from girlhood through to young adulthood. A subsidiary theme in the chapter is the extent to which printed advice books influenced the behavior of middle-class girls in eighteenth-century Ireland.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mary O’Dowd
    • 1
  1. 1.School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and PoliticsQueen’s University BelfastBelfastUK

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