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ARISTOCRATIC WOMEN
The Social, Political and Cultural History of Rich and Powerful Women

Part 1: The Correspondence of Jemima, Marchioness Grey (1722-97) and her Circle, from the Bedfordshire County Record Office

"What is the history of rich, powerful and establishment women?  Few people write it, so the question is rarely asked.  Historians of power are usually male and concentrate upon men. And most historians of women chronicle the dispossessed and the rebellious.  Moreover, there is still a tendency to assume that separate spheres was not just a powerful ideology, but also an accurate description of how the two sexes behaved."


Linda Colley, writing in The Sunday Times, 17 April 1994

This new project concentrates on substantial and revealing clusters of correspondence between aristocratic women in the 18th and early 19th centuries.

Part 1 covers the correspondence of Jemima Marchioness Grey (1722-1797) and her circle - which included her daughters, Amabel and Mary, as well as the noted essayist, Catherine Talbot.  Over 1,800 letters and 9 volumes of transcripts show their inter-relationships and provide evidence concerning taste, suitable reading, luxury, education, marriage, childbirth, philanthropy, patronage, class, sisterhood, and household and estate management.



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