Drinking houses, popular politics and the middling sorts in early seventeenth- century Norwich

Fiona Williamson, Elizabeth Southard

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    3 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    This article explores some of the most notorious popular political events of early seventeenth-century Norwich, with an eye to understanding these events as specific to the political culture of the middling sorts, especially the freemen electorate. Popular politics was not of course the sole preserve of the middling sorts, but it is interesting how the surviving evidence of political activity (including riots and contested elections) in Norwich strongly suggests an overlap between those men who held power in Norwich and those who most actively contested it. From the same body of civic records, popular politics is also revealed as grounded in particular features of the urban landscape, a claim explored for other cities but not yet for Norwich, as certain drinking houses - inns especially - reoccur as the location for significant political activity. This article argues, therefore, that popular politics in Norwich had a direct and meaningful connection not only with the culture of its middling sorts but also with their social networks and spaces of sociability. In particular it seeks to uncover whether there were any patterns to political happenings and whether, perhaps over time, certain places became fixed as ‘political’ in the common memory of Norwich’s landscape.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)9-26
    Number of pages18
    JournalCultural and Social History
    Volume12
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Fingerprint

    seventeenth century
    political activity
    politics
    event
    sociability
    social space
    political culture
    social network
    election
    evidence
    Popular Politics
    Norwich
    Drinking

    Keywords

    • Drinking houses
    • Middling sorts
    • Popular politics
    • Urban landscape

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Cultural Studies
    • Sociology and Political Science
    • History

    Cite this

    Drinking houses, popular politics and the middling sorts in early seventeenth- century Norwich. / Williamson, Fiona; Southard, Elizabeth.

    In: Cultural and Social History, Vol. 12, No. 1, 2015, p. 9-26.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Williamson, Fiona ; Southard, Elizabeth. / Drinking houses, popular politics and the middling sorts in early seventeenth- century Norwich. In: Cultural and Social History. 2015 ; Vol. 12, No. 1. pp. 9-26.
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