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"A linnen pockett, a prayer book and five keys": approaches to a history of women’s tie-on pockets

Burman, Barbara, (2007) "A linnen pockett, a prayer book and five keys": approaches to a history of women’s tie-on pockets Hayward, Maria and Kramer, Elizabeth (eds.) In Textiles and Text: Re-establishing the Links between Archival and Object-based Research. Archetype. 5 pp, pp. 157-163.

Record type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)


This paper introduces the AHRC-funded ‘Pockets of History’ study of the production and consumption of women’s tie-on pockets in Britain from c.1690 to 1914. It outlines the range of material, visual and textual sources used in the study and its findings from the large group of extant pockets it documented. The essay then uses two contrasting texts to extend understanding of the usage and social life of this pocket form and links these textual sources with the material evidence. First, examples of eighteenth century records of criminal court proceedings are used to demonstrate their role in uncovering the kind of small possessions carried by women in their pockets. Second, nineteenth century stitched and inked marks on surviving pockets are situated within the practices of household economy and management. Whilst these texts show how pockets were used and reveal aspects of their social significance, the essay also questions to what degree these sources can reveal the subjective experience of the users.

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Published date: October 2007
Venue - Dates: 3rd International Conference of the AHRC Research Centre for Textile Conservation and Textile Studies, 2006-07-11 - 2006-07-13
Keywords: pocket, pockets of history, criminal court proceeedings, household economy


Local EPrints ID: 48185
ISBN: 9781904982265
PURE UUID: 09882c14-c13f-4ed4-a919-f937013ff7bd

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Date deposited: 03 Sep 2007
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 15:00

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Author: Barbara Burman
Editor: Maria Hayward
Editor: Elizabeth Kramer

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