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One of the marked differences between early modern and twenty-first-century households was the ubiquitous presence of servants and lodgers in the former, especially in urban communities. The interactions of masters and mistresses with their domestic employees is well-explored terrain, but to a significant degree ‘the long history of problematic relations between servant and employer has frequently been characterised by manipulation, loaded negotiation, tension and conflict’ with far less attention paid to moments of compassion and collaboration, something which this chapter aims to rectify.1 By contrast, ‘the circumstances and experiences of both lodgers and those who took lodgers into their dwellings or shops has not been subjected to detailed examination by historians’.2 This chapter makes contributions to the historiography of both topics, focusing on the positive aspects of domestic relationships from the perspectives of mistress, maidservant and landlady.
KeywordsSeventeenth Century Female Employee Poor Woman Domestic Service Early Modern Period
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