Richard Brathwaite, The English Gentlewoman (1631)

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This well-known book by Richard Brathwaite lays out the various virtues that must be displayed by the English gentlewoman. It features two female signatures, evidently by women who were related to each other. Both Prudence Pooley and Susanna Pooley wrote their names in the book, practicing their names and Susanna’s name next to the title perhaps deliberately presents herself as an instance of the ideal Brathwaite describes. The inscription “Susan Pooely” is in different handwriting, perhaps a third woman or an inscription done at an earlier date by Susanna.

Source: Cambridge UL Special Collections, Broughton 57. Source: Twitter posting Cambridge UL Special Collections, @theULSpecColl, 11/30/18. Reproduced with permission.

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