The Middle Sort of People in Provincial England, 1600-1750

Hardcover | August 3, 2007

byH. R. French

not yet rated|write a review
Exploring the origins of 'middle-class' status in the English provinces during a formative period of social and economic change, this book provides the first comparative study of the nature of social identity in early modern provincial England. It questions definitions of a 'middling' group,united by shared patterns of consumption and display, and examines the bases for such identity in three detailed case studies of the 'middle sort' in East Anglia, Lancashire, and Dorset. Dr. French identifies how the 'middling' described their status, and examines this through their social positionin parish life and government, and through their material possessions. Instead of a coherent, unified 'middle sort of people' this book reveals division between self-proclaimed parish rulers (the 'chief inhabitants') and a wider body of modestly prosperous householders, who nevertheless shared social perspectives bounded within their localities. By the eighteenthcentury, many of these 'chief inhabitants' were trying to break out of their parish pecking orders - not by associating with a wider 'middle class', but by modifying ideas of gentility to suit their circumstances (and pockets). French concludes as a result, that while the presence of a distinct 'middling' stratum is apparent, the social identity of the people remained fragmented - restricted by parochial society on the one hand, and overshadowed by the prospect of gentility on the other. He offers new interpretation andinsights into the composition and scale of the society in early modern England.

Pricing and Purchase Info

$132.00

Ships within 1-3 weeks
Ships free on orders over $25

From the Publisher

Exploring the origins of 'middle-class' status in the English provinces during a formative period of social and economic change, this book provides the first comparative study of the nature of social identity in early modern provincial England. It questions definitions of a 'middling' group,united by shared patterns of consumption and ...

H.R. French is a Lecturer in Early Modern History, University of Exeter.

other books by H. R. French

The Trespasser: A Novel
The Trespasser: A Novel

Hardcover|Oct 4 2016

$31.57 online$36.00list price(save 12%)
In The Woods
In The Woods

Paperback|May 7 2013

$15.99

Waiting For Wednesday: A Frieda Klein Mystery
Waiting For Wednesday: A Frieda Klein Mystery

Hardcover|May 5 2016

$5.00 online$32.95list price
see all books by H. R. French
Format:HardcoverDimensions:320 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.87 inPublished:August 3, 2007Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199296383

ISBN - 13:9780199296385

Look for similar items by category:

Customer Reviews of The Middle Sort of People in Provincial England, 1600-1750

Reviews

Extra Content

Table of Contents

Introduction - Definitions1. The Local Context2. Parish Office and the Formation of Social Identity3. 'Chief Inhabitants' and 'Material Culture'4. The Language of Social AuthorityConclusion