Thursday, August 30, 2007

Question from Mark - Tudor speech/dialogue

Really pleased to have found your wonderful site. It has been of huge use already.

I have to create a 26 year old woman in the New Forest in 1502. She is Martha to me but if this name does not fit then period suggestions would be welcome. She is married with Children and lives a peasant or commoners life. I have some ideas how she and her family might support themselves but am keen to hear of unusual or peculiarly local crafts or trades that might sustain them. I think I am going to find it quite hard to write her speech. Should I concern myself with "Tudor talk" or try to find the oldest available indication of "Forest/Hampshire talk".

1 comment:

PhD Historian said...

Martha does occur as a Christian name in England in the Tudor period, though it was far less common than other names. If you want an excellent reference source for names from the Tudor era, see "Names and Naming Patterns in England, 1538 - 1700," by Scott Smith-Bannister (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1997). You would probably have to visit a university library to find a copy, however. For an excellent recent study of the kinds of work that women engaged in during the period, see "Working Women in English Society, 1300-1620" by Marjorie K. McIntosh (Cambridge University Press, 2005).