Power and the Old Maid: The never-married gentlewoman in her family, 1740-1835

Duncan, Alison
June 2010
Women's History Magazine (1476-6760);Summer2010, Issue 63, p11
Academic Journal
The article presents an examination into the history of women's social power during the 18th and early 19th centuries, focusing on the influence and position of unmarried women in the elite class of Great Britain. Contrasting historical sources are quoted, outlining popular negative views against unmarried women but also citing other direct domestic records which suggest unmarried women had more power and utility within the family than otherwise indicated. The specific example of the 18th century Adam family, particularly the daughter Margaret Adam, is given to illustrate the point.


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