An Account of an Elizabethan Family: Volume 55: The Willoughbys of Wollaton by Cassandra Willoughby, 1670-1735
Cassandra Willoughby's Account of the Willoughbys of Wollaton is an invaluable portrait of family, kinship, regional and national dynamics in the Tudor and early Stuart period. Based on letters and papers that Cassandra found in the family library, her Account focuses, for the most part, on the women of the family. No other collection of letters and account books offers anything close to the depth of understanding of sixteenth-century family dynamics, gentry culture and court connections contained in this account. Of particular interest is Elizabeth Willoughby's public refusal to obey her husband, Francis Willoughby, and their ensuing ten-year separation that saw the death of a young son and resulted in appeals to Queen Elizabeth. We learn about the status of women, hospitality, relations with servants, the social hierarchy, interactions with the royal court, education, religious concerns, household management, marriage negotiations, love relations, literacy, inheritance struggles, interpersonal behaviour and much more.
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