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Feast & Fast

The Art of Food in Europe, 1500 – 1800

52: Richard Bradley, The Country Housewife and Lady’s Director

Richard Bradley, The Country Housewife and Lady’s Director, in the Management of a House, and the Delights and Profits of a Farm First published in 1732 by Richard Bradley, the first Professor of Botany at Cambridge, The Country Housewife was a popular guide aimed specifically at women readers. It includes recipes for cooking food and medicinal remedies, as well as advice for the successful running of a home and farm.

Its frontispiece shows activities associated with Autumn. The middle-ground is dominated by scenes of harvesting: grapes from the vineyard are pressed, while ripe corn is cut, bundled into sheaves and tied into stooks. In the foreground, fresh milk is brought to a spotless dairy, where industrious maids convert it into butter and cheese. (D. Browne: London, 1736; 6th edition)

Private collection

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