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Aristocratic Splendour: Money and the World of Thomas Coke, Earl of Leicester Paperback – 22 Mar 2007
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What was life on a great aristocratic estate such as Thomas Coke's Holkham in Norfolk like? Where did the money come from? How does an up and coming young aristocrat make his way in the often murky world of royal and political circles? Using the extraordinary riches of the Holkham archives, D.P. Mortlock recreates in stunning detail the lives of the great and the little people of eighteenth-century England. He brings us those who peopled the world of Thomas Coke; the lords and ladies, the mobile middle-classes, the money-lenders, the country parsons, the arrogant footmen and the footpads. Mortlock's book brings to life a lost world of aristocratic splendour and the illuminated lives of hundreds of ordinary people. Coke's lasting monument is undoubtedly the great house he created at Holkham in Norfolk, at the heart of which is money, and money is at the heart of this book. From the carefully detailed marriage settlement arranged in 1718 when Coke married Lady Margaret Tufton, to the shilling which Coke had to borrow from a footman in an emergency, the financial dealings were recorded in fascinating detail, as were the lives of the people of the age.
About the Author
D. P. Mortlock is the librarian at Holkham Hall and author of a three-volume guide to the churches of Suffolk and Norfolk and a history of Holkham library to be published by the Roxburghe Club.
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I can recommend this on many levels as it reflects historical, social, economic history in a very
easily digestible manner.