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Lady Fanshawe's Receipt Book: The Life and Times of a Civil War Heroine Hardcover – 2 Nov 2017
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Fascinating... A vivid account of how desperate women, without a scientific theory of disease fought infection, illness and accident... Moore has served her heroine well in an account that honours the ineffectual and the potent recipes, the setbacks and victories of a fascinating life. -- Philippa Gregory * The Times * A lively and sympathetic account of what life was like during the Commonwealth for those who stayed loyal to Charles I until his execution, and followed his son into exile... Moore's prose is witty. Her book is full of arresting detail and thoughtful comment. -- Lucy Hughes-Hallett * Sunday Times * An enchanting, idiosyncratic Tardis of a book, peppered with good humour * Daily Telegraph * A lively, affecting account of one family's fortunes in a world turned upside down. * Spectator * With enormous skill, and in matchless prose, Lucy Moore brings back to life one of those Royalist women whose husbands suffered terribly for the King, while they were left at home to get on with the trying business of being wives, mothers, and heads of household in an age beset with turbulence, and fear. * Charles Spencer, author of KILLERS OF THE KING * Ann Fanshawe was an extraordinary woman living in extraordinary times. This wonderful book has at its heart her experiences as daughter, wife and mother during the Civil War, and is as dramatic and touching a story as anything in fiction. Her attempts to hold her family together in such turbulent times are brilliantly chronicled by Lucy Moore, who has written an unfailingly sympathetic account of the human cost of conflict, and the everyday resilience and bravery of those caught up in it. * Janice Hadlow, author of THE STRANGEST FAMILY * An erudite, beautifully written and completely original contribution to the history of the civil war. Lucy Moore is a most worthy biographer of one of the most fascinating women of the 17th century. * Katie Hickman, author of DAUGHTERS OF BRITANNIA * Vividly brings to life an ordinary woman living in extraordinary times. Rich in fascinating detail, it sets Lady Fanshawe's story of love and loss, family and friendships, against one of the most turbulent periods of our history. Highly recommended. * Tracy Borman, author of THE PRIVATE LIVES OF THE TUDORS * Ann's is an interesting life, full of duty, adventure, the greatly lamented deaths of many children and also much affection... There are considerable gaps in our knowledge of Ann, which Moore has filled in with plentiful asides relating to other major figures of the day... Charming and original * Literary Review *
About the Author
Lucy Moore is an author and broadcaster whose work includes the bestselling Maharanis: The Lives & Times of Three Generations of Indian Princesses. She has written for the Sunday Times, Observer, Vogue and Harpers Bazaar, and has presented series for the BBC and Sky.
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Anne Fanshawewas born in 1625. Her father was a wealthy crown servant. When the Civil War broke out her family fled to join the court in exile in Oxford. She was 17 when the war began. She and her Had been married in 1644. He was 17 years older than her husband Richard had Ann took with her a slim bundle of papers. They were the core of what became her book detailing remedies, and recipes. The earliest is dated 1650 when she was 25. The remedies included putting fresh dung on a wound and stroking a cyst with a dead hand. When here husband Richard was release from prison suffering from what looked like a fatal fever, blackened gums and rotting teeth she dosed him with a receipt that included watercress. It worked. Unknown to her it contains vitamin C. At a time when illnesses and disease had to be treated without a scientific theory of disease the receipts were alll that was available. Many were bizarre and as bad if not worse than the condition wanting a cure. Her daughter added to the entries after her mother's death. The recipes for food cover the favourite of the time: syllabubs, possess and roasts. There are eleven cherry recipes plus many foreign ones. The first recipe for icy cream is here.
Each chapter of this account is introduced by a medical receipt. It is worth remembering how few doctors were available. In Shropshire there was only one. In the absence of hospitals women attended each other in childbirth and nursedthe sick in their own homes. Anne's receipts included Balsome, ones to induce vomiting, how to take blood, and one for the very risky painkiller laudanum. Anne had twenty children of whom only five survived. She buried her babies in graves all over Europe where they had fled to after Charles was defeated and beheaded. When the monarchy was restored they returned to England and Richard rode beside Charles 11 at his coronation in 1661. Richard had hoped to become Secretary of State but was appointed as ambassador to Spain for a second time until he was replaced by one of the King's favourites. Richard died in Spain aged 58. Anne had to return to England desperately short of money-Richard had not been paid his his salary-and with four children, a newborn baby and a household of 30. In those days women had to be very courageous and resourceful. He Women had a very difficult life at a time when contraception was absent or rudimentary.
Politics infused every aspect of society. For Royalists, receipt books were a reminder of happier times. There were also repositories of arcane knowledge. Remedies were satirised in masques. Anne's receipt book is a network of Royalists, often emigres like her and her husband. Unlike some other female writers, Anne never published her work. As a result she escaped severe censuring by men. Her wifely devotion was placed above self. When her husband had been captured and imprisoned by Cromwell's forces she spent hours in the dark and rain talking to him below his cell .
Anne's writings are very personal. This is one reason they are not better known. They are intended for family. They were also an attempt to keep her family together during and after the war. Her book is not only the portrait of her it is also about the turbulent world she lived in, her place in society and her life as the wife of a leading Royalist and servant of the crown. Moore shows that Ann shaped her own world. Moore argues that Ann and those like her 'was a heroine of the civil wars as surely as any bloodstained soldier'. Anne died in 1680 in very reduced circumstances. Her brief memoir written for her last born son as a memorial to the father he never knew displays her bitterness at the ingratitude of two kings who her husband had served loyally.
This engaging book provides readers with insights into the extraordinary times in which Anne lived. She was a courageous and feisty woman, a devoted wife and mother with a strong sense of adventure. Her struggles, her sorrows and her joys are superbly illuminated by Lucy Moore in this delightful book.
There are18 chapters with titles such as : 1656: The Red Powder Good For Miscarrying; illustrations, a family tree, notes and a short bibliography. Highly recommended.
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