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Judging New WealthPopular Publishing and Responses to Commerce in England, 1750–1800$
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James Raven

Print publication date: 1992

Print ISBN-13: 9780198202370

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198202370.001.0001

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Pretensions to Land

Pretensions to Land

(p.201) 10 Pretensions to Land
Judging New Wealth

James Raven

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on depictions of businessmen as country estate owners. One of the most striking, popular, and stereotyped fictional settings developed during the second half of the 18th century was that of the retired businessman in his ‘brand-new’ country seat. Description of the tradesman's purchase or improvement of a country estate became a common feature of works claiming instructive and realistic attention to contemporary society. These caricatures were largely in response to the well-publicized search for country estates by prominent businessmen, nabobs, and manufacturers. They also provided convenient illustration of the excesses of the upstart, his bad taste, and his idle pretension.

Keywords:   businessmen, landowners, tradesmen, country seat, country estates, nabobs, manufacturers

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