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At Home in Renaissance Bruges

Connecting Objects, People and Domestic Spaces in a Sixteenth-Century City

Julie De Groot (Author),

Category: History, History 1500-1800, Urban Studies

Language: English

ISBN: 9789462703179

Publication date: March 29, 2022

€49.50 (including 6% VAT)

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Number of pages: 320

Size: 230 x 170 x 22 mm

Number of illustrations: 30

Illustrations and other content description:
Illustrated with colour section of 32 pp. Guaranteed Peer Reviewed Content

Funded by: Universiteit Antwerpen
KU Leuven Fund for Fair Open Access

Stock item: 147352

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Category: History, History 1500-1800, Urban Studies

Language: English

ISBN: 9789461664396

Publication date: March 3, 2022

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Number of pages: 320

Number of illustrations: 30

Illustrations and other content description:
Illustrated with colour section of 32 pp. Guaranteed Peer Reviewed Content

Funded by: Universiteit Antwerpen
KU Leuven Fund for Fair Open Access

Category: History, History 1500-1800, Urban Studies

Language: English

DOI: 10.11116/9789461664389

ISBN: 9789461664389

Publication date: March 2, 2022

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Number of pages: 320

Number of illustrations: 30

Illustrations and other content description:
Illustrated with colour section of 32 pp. Guaranteed Peer Reviewed Content

Funded by: Universiteit Antwerpen
KU Leuven Fund for Fair Open Access

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Domestic materiality in a remarkable European city
How did citizens in Bruges create a home? What did an ordinary domestic interior look like in the sixteenth century? And more importantly: how does one study the domestic culture of bygone times by analysing documents such as probate inventories? These questions seem straightforward, yet few endeavours are more challenging than reconstructing a sixteenth-century domestic reality from written sources. This book takes full advantage of the inventory as a source and convincingly frames household objects in their original context of use. Meticulously connecting objects, people and domestic spaces, the book introduces the reader to the rich material world of Bruges citizens in the Renaissance, their sensory engagement, their religious practice, the daily activities of men and women, and other social factors. By weaving insights from material culture studies with urban history, At Home in Renaissance Bruges offers an appealing and holistic mixture of in-depth socio-economic, cultural and material analysis. In its approach the book goes beyond heavy-handed theories and stereotypes about the exquisite taste of aristocratic elites, focusing instead on the domestic materiality of Bruges’ middling groups. Evocatively illustrated with contemporary paintings and images of furniture and textiles from Bruges and beyond, this monograph shows a nuanced picture of domestic materiality in a remarkable European city.

Ebook available in Open Access.
This publication is GPRC-labeled (Guaranteed Peer-Reviewed Content).

GENERAL INTRODUCTION The Spatial Turn Reclaiming Domesticity At Home in Renaissance Bruges Sources and Challenges The Structure of the Book
PART 1CROSSING THE THRESHOLD: THE ORGANISATION OF DOMESTIC SPACE
INTRODUCTION Functional Specialisation: A Subject of Discussion What’s in a Name? The Nomenclature of Domestic Space
CONNECTING THE HOUSE TO THE STREET? THE SHOP AND WORKSHOP Introduction ‘Historians and the Nation of Shopkeepers’ Shops and Shopping in Bruges Similarities and Differences: The Broader Picture
THE MERCHANT IN THE CONTOOR Introduction The Contoor in Bruges Similarities and Differences: The Broader Picture
AT THE HEART OF THE HOME: ROOMS AT THE HEART OF DOMESTIC CULTURE The Kitchen in Bruges Dining Room and Salette The Elusive Realm of Sleep: Sleeping Rooms Similarities and Differences: The Broader Picture
PART 2DOMESTIC OBJECTS IN CONTEXT
INTRODUCTION DEVOTION ON DISPLAY? PAINTINGS IN DOMESTIC INTERIORS Introduction What’s in a Name? Possessing Paintings in Fifteenth- and Sixteenth-Century Bruges Canvas and Panel Paintings Paintings and Iconographical Themes Devotion on Display Conclusions
FOR PUBLIC ELEGANCE AND PRIVATE COMFORT: TEXTILES AND FURNITURE Introduction Comfort and the Textile Environment The Seat of Authority? The Design and Social Character of Seating Furniture Show Me Your Bed and I’ll Tell You Who You Are! Keeping Up Appearances? Tapestry in the Domestic Interior A Colourful Interior Exposing or Storing Textiles: The Garderobe and the Cleerschaprade Conclusions
GENERAL CONCLUSIONS APPENDIX 1: INVENTORY HOLDERS WHO WORKED AT HOME APPENDIX 2: INVENTORIES WITH ‘CONTOOR’ NOTES BIBLIOGRAPHY PLATES

Julie De Groot

Julie De Groot is a historian and researcher at the University of Antwerp.

Brugge was een ontmoetingsplaats voor humanistische geleerden, maar hoe creëerden de Bruggelingen een thuis, hoe zag een gewoon wooninterieur eruit in de 16de eeuw, en nog belangrijker, hoe bestudeer je eigenlijk de huiselijke cultuur van vervlogen tijden door documenten zoals nalatenschapsinventarissen te analyseren? Door objecten, mensen en huiselijke ruimtes, nauwgezet met elkaar te verbinden, laat het boek, “At Home in Renaissance Bruges” kennismaken met de rijke materiële wereld van de Brugse burgers in de Renaissance, hun zintuiglijke betrokkenheid, hun religieuze praktijk, de dagelijkse activiteiten van zowel mannen als vrouwen, en andere sociale factoren.Michel Dutrieue, Stretto,
28 april 2022

“The best rooms have something to say about the people who live in them.”, zei de bekende interieurarchitect David Hicks ooit. De publicatie At home in Renaissance Bruges van historica Julie De Groot beaamt dit. Aan de hand van boedelinventarissen worden verschillende levens van Bruggelingen uit de zestiende eeuw opnieuw zichtbaar gemaakt. Michelle Coenen, Bladspiegel, 29 juli 2022

As De Groot shows, the resulting economic downturn was not as severe as past scholarship assumed, but there was nevertheless a gradual decrease of industry and trade, a loss of international connections, and an exodus of merchants and skilled artisans, including painters. Thus, At Home in Renaissance Bruges allows an unusual peek into the homes of a city that was still of substance but had effectively been reduced to a middling position in its own right, following the fashions of Antwerp rather than setting trends for others.
Rembrandt Duits, Journal of Design History, epac047, https://doi.org/10.1093/jdh/epac047

Dit boek handelt over de materiële cultuur van de huizen van de Brugse middenklasse. Tot nu toe werd dit aspect weinig onderzocht: hoe leefden die mensen in het Brugge van de 16de eeuw? Hoe richtten ze hun woningen in? Welk meubilair kochten ze aan? Hoe versierden ze de binnenruimte? Deelstudies focusten op een facet van het dagelijks leven, geïnspireerd door de archeologie, de bouwgeschiedenis, de kunstgeschiedenis en de materiële culturele studies. Dit boek doet een poging om al deze facetten van ruimtes, bewoners en objecten in één studie samen te brengen. [...] De gedegen en wetenschappelijke studie is niet bedoeld als een mooi kijkboek over interieurs van de 16de eeuw. De illustraties, grotendeels gebundeld achteraan, zijn beperkt gehouden en het formaat van de papieren paperbackversie is dat van een leesboek. In elk geval een origineel en gefundeerd onderzoek!
Marjan Buyle, M&L, 41-5 (2022)

Much scholarship on sixteenth-century material culture in the Netherlands focuses on the cosmopolitan metropolis of Antwerp and, more specifically, its wealthy entrepreneurs. Julie De Groot’s choice to study Bruges’s non-elite households is, therefore, a much welcome – and much needed – addition to the research on domestic objects and domesticity in the 1500s, even more so as the study is available both in paperback and as an open-access e-book. As the author convincingly argues, Bruges offers an interesting case study because it illustrates a ‘gradual transition [...] from an international metropolis to a sizeable provincial centre’. Likewise, by concentrating on the neither wealthy nor poor ‘middling sort’, and on shopkeepers and artisans in particular, At Home in Renaissance Bruges provides information on the material fabric of ordinary burghers’ lives in the turbulent sixteenth century. Barbara Kaminska, bmgn — Low Countries Historical Review | Volume 137 (2022), https://doi.org/10.51769/bmgn-lchr.13449

Er gaat sedert de jaren 2000 heel wat aandacht naar materiële cultuur bij de gewone man in de loop van de geschiedenis. Dit boek hoort perfect in dat rijtje thuis. Wat stond er in de huizen (in dit geval van Brugse burgers met een beetje centen) in de Bourgondische tijd? En wat leert ons de connectie tussen archivalische en picturale bronnen? Staan in musea de voorwerpen die we geschilderd zien? De Groot heeft jarenlang gewerkt aan de connectie en is tot interessante bevindingen gekomen.
Christusrex.be, 20.02.2023

De Groot’s extensive and meticulous statistical analysis of inventory evidence, focus on the middling sort, and her interest in how identities were created and displayed via everyday household objects locates her work firmly among English scholarship on the home. Sarah Hinds, TSEG, VOL. 20, NO. 1, 2023, https://tseg.nl/article/view/13624/15552

Waar geen twijfel over bestaat is dat dit boek een prominente plaats mag opeisen in de historiografie van Brugge en van het internationale onderzoek naar materiële cultuur in een ongemeen boeiende periode van transitie. - Ludo Vandamme, Handelingen van het Genootschap voor Geschiedenis te Brugge 160 | 2 2023

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