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Travesties and Transgressions in Tudor and Stuart EnglandTales of Discord and Dissension$
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David Cressy

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780198207818

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198207818.001.0001

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Another Midwife's Tale: Alcohol, Patriarchy, and Childbirth in Early Modern London

Another Midwife's Tale: Alcohol, Patriarchy, and Childbirth in Early Modern London

Chapter:
(p.84) 6 Another Midwife's Tale: Alcohol, Patriarchy, and Childbirth in Early Modern London
Source:
Travesties and Transgressions in Tudor and Stuart England
Author(s):

David. Cressy

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198207818.003.0007

This chapter tells a story of sexual dalliance, jealousy, and female sociability that came before the London archdeaconry court in 1635. It is a tale of strong drink and strong women. The central character was employed as a midwife, and made claims about her midwifery practice to bolster her reputation. This story has tales within tales, and contested claims to the truth, as women argued in public about affronts to their honour. Elizabeth Wyatt became subject to judicial investigation and half a dozen women gave evidence about her. It was heard that she was ‘keeping company at unlawful hours and in suspicious places’ with Abraham Brand. The midwife's principal accuser was Elizabeth Brand, the wife of Abraham of the parish of Christ Church, London.

Keywords:   Elizabeth Wyatt, alcohol, patriarchy, midwife, Abraham Brand, Elizabeth Brand, female jealousy

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