Servants and Bedfellows author event at Bloomsbury Institute, June 4th

Bloomsbury Institute

The Bloomsbury Institute & Salon  aims to let you inside the world of publishing in the heart of literary London with Bloomsbury Publishing’s new series of author events, hosted at their offices in Georgian Bedford Square.

June 4th lecture with With Lucy Lethbridge, Anna Whitelock & Kate Worsley

From maids-of-all-work to the ladies who waited on Elizabeth I, there is a fascinating hidden history of the serving classes. Lucy Lethbridge, Anna Whitelock and Kate Worsley explore the relationship between the servers and the served and the fictionalisation of their stories.

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Lucy Lethbridge’s Servants: A Downstairs View of Twentieth-century Britain
is a sweeping history of the household staff who toiled in kitchens, parlours and country houses. Lucy gives us an intimate insight into the invisible lives of those who ironed shoelaces, blackened grates and stirred eggs so the yolks would be perfectly centred. The stories of the below-stairs are the untold history of the last century, their fortunes a barometer of the twilight years of the landed estates, the changing place of both men and women and the radical shifts in domestic life.

‘Humane, perceptive and dispassionate, Servants takes us more deeply and comprehensively than any previous account into the real world of Upstairs, Downstairs’ David Kynaston

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Elizabeth’s Bedfellows: An Intimate History of the Queen’s Court  is Anna Whitelock’s riveting and intimate history of the heart of the Elizabethan court: Elizabeth’s bedchamber. Elizabeth’s bedfellows closely guarded the Queen, helped her dress, washed her clothing, looked after her jewels and shared her bed. They were the guardians of the truth about her health, chastity and fertility. Their presence was both for propriety and for security, tasting each dish before it was served, and making nightly security searches of the chamber for poisons or gunpowder for fear of assassination attempts.

‘Anna Whitelock’s skilful and detailed history will bring you closer than seems possible to this glittering, infuriating, fascinating woman’ Hilary Mantel

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 Kate Worsley’s historical fiction, She Rises, is a tale of drunken sailors, press gangs and smugglers intertwined with a love story set in the eighteenth century told in part by Louise, a young dairymaid who becomes a lady’s maid in the bustling naval port of Harwich. She’ll reveal how she turned the everyday life of a young lady’s maid into a spell-binding tale set against the backbone of solid historical research.

‘A beguiling historical tale of love and adventure’ Stylist

Servants & Bedfellows.

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