Preserving on Paper: Seventeenth-Century Englishwomen's Receipt Books

Edited by Kristine Kowalchuk

© 2017

Apricot wine and stewed calf’s head, melancholy medicine and "ointment of roses."

Welcome to the cookbook Shakespeare would have recognized. Preserving on Paper is a critical edition of three seventeenth-century receipt books–handwritten manuals that included a combination of culinary recipes, medical remedies, and household tips which documented the work of women at home. Kristine Kowalchuk argues that receipt books served as a form of folk writing, where knowledge was shared and passed between generations. These texts played an important role in the history of women’s writing and literacy and contributed greatly to issues of authorship, authority, and book history. Kowalchuk’s revelatory interdisciplinary study offers unique insights into early modern women’s writings and the original sharing economy.

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Product Details

  • Series: Studies in Book and Print Culture
  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 392 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
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SKU# SP004369

  • PUBLISHED JUN 2017

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    Regular Price: $34.95

    ISBN 9781487520038
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    ISBN 9781487500061
  • PUBLISHED JUN 2017

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    Regular Price: $34.95

Quick Overview

Preserving on Paper is a critical edition of three seventeenth-century receipt books–handwritten manuals that included a combination of culinary recipes, medical remedies, and household tips which documented the work of women at home.

Preserving on Paper: Seventeenth-Century Englishwomen's Receipt Books

Edited by Kristine Kowalchuk

© 2017

Apricot wine and stewed calf’s head, melancholy medicine and "ointment of roses."

Welcome to the cookbook Shakespeare would have recognized. Preserving on Paper is a critical edition of three seventeenth-century receipt books–handwritten manuals that included a combination of culinary recipes, medical remedies, and household tips which documented the work of women at home. Kristine Kowalchuk argues that receipt books served as a form of folk writing, where knowledge was shared and passed between generations. These texts played an important role in the history of women’s writing and literacy and contributed greatly to issues of authorship, authority, and book history. Kowalchuk’s revelatory interdisciplinary study offers unique insights into early modern women’s writings and the original sharing economy.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Studies in Book and Print Culture
  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 392 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    "Readers will enjoy the peek through a 17th century kitchen window that Preserving on Paper offers, but they will also find the recipes and remedies delightful."


    Liane Faulder
    The Edmonton Journal, August 11, 2017

    ‘These remarkable 17th century books invite us to consider which forms of writing are actually woven into the fabric of how we live, and who is producing them.’


    Eugenia Zuroski
    Literary Review of Canada May 2017

    "These three meticulously transcribed manuscripts offer a fascinating glimpse into the realm of the seventeenth-century housewife as she moves from baking plum cakes and preserving gooseberry wine to putting together cough medicines and potions to cure deafness. An absorbing glossary and a thoughtful introduction make this book a wonderful resource for anyone interested in the transition from the rural medieval world where communal traditions going back to Antiquity were transmitted orally to the individualistic, urban modern world of printed texts." 


    Rachel Laudan, author of 'Cuisine & Empire: Cooking in World History'
  • Author Information

    Kristine Kowalchuk is an instructor of critical reading and writing at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology.

  • Table of contents

    Historical Introduction

    Note on the Text

    Three Seventeenth-Century Receipt Books:

    I. MS V.a.430
    Receipt Book attributed to Mary Granville and Anne Granville D’Ewes

    Translations of Spanish Recipes

    II. MS V.a.20
    Receipt Book attributed to Constance Hall

    III. MS V.a.450
    Cookery and Medical Receipt Book attributed to Lettice Pudsey

    Culinary, Medical, and Household Terms Glossary

    Works Cited

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