The Routledge Handbook of Material Culture in Early Modern Europe marks the arrival of early modern material culture studies as a vibrant, fully-established field of multi-disciplinary research.
The volume provides a rounded, accessible collection of work on the nature and significance of materiality in early modern Europe – a term that embraces a vast range of objects as well as addressing a wide variety of human interactions with their physical environments. This stimulating view of materiality is distinctive in asking questions about the whole material world as a context for lived experience, and the book considers material interactions at all social levels.
There are 27 chapters by leading experts as well as 13 feature object studies to highlight specific items that have survived from this period (defined broadly as c.1500–c.1800). These contributions explore the things people acquired, owned, treasured, displayed and discarded, the spaces in which people used and thought about things, the social relationships which cluster around goods – between producers, vendors and consumers of various kinds – and the way knowledge travels around those circuits of connection. The content also engages with wider issues such as the relationship between public and private life, the changing connections between the sacred and the profane, or the effects of gender and social status upon lived experience.
Constructed as an accessible, wide-ranging guide to research practice, the book describes and represents the methods which have been developed within various disciplines for analysing pre-modern material culture. It comprises four sections which open up the approaches of various disciplines to non-specialists: ‘Definitions, disciplines, new directions’, ‘Contexts and categories’, ‘Object studies’ and ‘Material culture in action’.
This volume addresses the need for sustained, coherent comment on the state, breadth and potential of this lively new field, including the work of historians, art historians, museum curators, archaeologists, social scientists and literary scholars. It consolidates and communicates recent developments and considers how we might take forward a multi-disciplinary research agenda for the study of material culture in periods before the mass production of goods.
Table of Contents
List of Figures
SECTION 1: DEFINITIONS, DISCIPLINES, NEW DIRECTIONS
Catherine Richardson, Tara Hamling and David Gaimster
Chapter 1: Global Things: Europe’s Early Modern Material Transformation
Chapter 2: Cognitive History and Material Culture
John Sutton and Nicholas Keene
SECTION 2: CONTEXTS AND CATEGORIES
Chapter 3: Maps and Material Culture
Chapter 4: The Royal Court
Chapter 5: The Material Culture of Early Modern Churches
Chapter 6: Public Buildings in Early Modern Europe
Chapter 7: Domestic Buildings: Understanding Houses and Society
Chapter 8: Materiality and the Streetlife of the Early Modern City
Chapter 9: Materiality, Nature and the Body
Erin Sullivan and Andrew Wear
Chapter 10: Mortuary Culture
Chapter 11: Clothing
Chapter 12: Getting Down from the Table: Early Modern Foodways and Material Culture
Chapter 13: Arms and Armour
Chapter 14: Material Texts
Frances Maguire and Helen Smith
SECTION 3: OBJECT STUDIES
Object Study 1: The Panyer Alley Boy
Object Study 2: Abraham Ortelius, his epitome of the theatre of the worlde
Object Study 3: ‘The Persian Sibyl’ Banqueting Trencher
Object Study 4: A ‘Witch-bottle’
Object Study 5: A Drug Jar
Object Study 6: A Shoehorn
Object Study 7: A Maiolica plate
Object study 8: ‘Concealed’ leather shoes
Object Study 9: Manuscript Directions for Weaving Braids
Object Study 10: The Balsambüchse – a Portable Seventeenth-Century Medicine Cabinet
Object Study 11: The Maidstone Helmet
Object Study 12: A Dutch carved cupboard
Object Study 13: An Embroidered Mirror
SECTION 4: MATERIAL CULTURE IN ACTION
Chapter 15: The Material Culture of Lineage in late-Tudor and early-Stuart England
Chapter 16: The Malleable Moment in English Portraiture, c. 1540-1640
Chapter 17: Is This a Man I See Before Me?: Early Modern Masculinities and the New Materialisms
Chapter 18: In Praise of Clean Linen: Laundering Humours on the Early Modern English Stage
Natasha Korda and Eleanor Lowe
Chapter 19: Early Modern Religious Objects or Objects of Belief?
Chapter 20: The Material Culture of Piety in the Italian Renaissance: Re-touching the Rosary
Irene Galandra Cooper and Mary Laven
Chapter 21: Early Modern Spaces and Olfactory Traces
David Karmon and Christy Anderson
Chapter 22: Musical Sound and Material Culture
Chapter 23: Lasting Impressions of the Common Woodcut
Patricia Fumerton and Megan Palmer-Browne, with William Palmer
Chapter 24: Baroque Sculpture: Materiality and the Question of Movement
Chapter 25: Rights of Privacy in Early Modern English Households
Lena Cowen Orlin
Chapter 26: Antwerp and the ‘Material Renaissance’: Exploring the social and economic significance of crystal glass and majolica in the sixteenth century
Inneke Baatsen, Bruno Blondé and Carolien De Staelen
Chapter 27: I Say ‘Shard’, You Say ‘Sherd’: contrasting and complimentary approaches to a piece of early modern ‘venice glass’
Angela McShane and Nigel Jeffries
Dr Catherine Richardson is a Reader in Renaissance Studies at the University of Kent, UK.
Dr Tara Hamling is a Senior Lecturer in History at the University of Birmingham, UK.
Professor David Gaimster is Director of the Hunterian at the University of Glasgow, UK.