|GR: A cook and a housemaid
Written by Jacqueline
(10/28/2003 2:41 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, GR: Two maids and a man, penned by Myretta
My understanding was that if a family could only afford one servant she would be a maid-of-all-work, but if the family could stretch to a second servant they would employ a cook, freeing up the maid to be a housemaid. The next step up would be to employ a man-servant.
Interesting that the Dashwoods seem to have two maids. I wonder if any of the family do the cooking. ET has Elinor peeling potatoes in S&S2 which seems unlikely to me - surely too menial for one of the ladies?
Mr Collins commits a faux pas in P&P when he suggests that one of the Bennet daughters might have cooked dinner so ladies cooking must have been a possibility.
I think Mrs Dashwood and Elinor take over the role of housekeeper: managing the servants, ordering goods and balancing the accounts. Also, they can't afford a governess for Margaret so I think they all have a hand in her education.
Gentleman's Daughter Group Read is maintained by Laraine with WebBBS 3.21.