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Unmarried adolescents and filial assistance in eighteenth-century Flanders

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  • Lambrecht, Thijs A.
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    Abstract

    Service was one of the main characteristics of the European Marriage Pattern in pre-industrial western Europe. During this stage of the life cycle adolescents could acquire the material assets and skills that were required to marry and start an independent household. Whilst in service, servants could save between 40 and 60 per cent of their cash wage. This paper illustrates that servants also used their earnings to assist their families. Parents of servants in particular could rely on both remittances in cash and in kind. As such, placing children in service was also a source of income for peasant household in Flanders. I argue that both patterns of land ownership and the restricted access to welfare ressources explain why servants displayed this altruistic behaviour.

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    File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/35400/
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 35400.

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    Date of creation: Oct 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:35400

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    Related research

    Keywords: adolescents; farm servants; saving; Flanders; family assistance; poor relief; household formation; European Marriage Pattern;

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    1. A. S. Kussmaul, 1981. "The Ambiguous Mobility of Farm Servants," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 34(2), pages 222-235, 05.
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