Medieval Woman

The Middle Ages, 5th to 15th Century, were the times of agricultural and feudal society as most of the people used to live and work on land. Though the times were hard for men, but, medieval is considered as a particularly hard time for women; they were dominated by men and there were very few that actually got the privilege of working and getting recognition for their work.

Social Status of Women in Middle Ages

Social status of women was low as the society was mainly governed by the Church and as per the laws, women were not allowed to speak in any matters and is allowed minimal to no freedom. They could not marry without their parents’ approval, own a business, divorce their husbands, own a property unless they are widows or inherit their parents’ land or any other property.

The main responsibility of women in the Middle Sages was to look after children, their husband and the house; household chores like cooking and homemaking were considered as the prime duty of women. Other than being a wife, the women were given another choice of becoming nuns, other than these two, there weren’t any choices for them. In these times, women were engaged in many household work as spinning, baking, cooking, sewing etc. but the idea of education was alien to the majority of women, to be more specific, to common and poor local women.

Political status of Women in Middle Ages

Although times were especially unfavourable for women, a fraction of women did manage to gain some power in medieval society as the abbesses of convents. The position of an abbess was of great responsibility and they used to manage monasteries housing men and women. As becoming a

Outside the monastic world, some women gained political power on behalf of their absent husbands of underage sons and the medieval times had witnessed a number of powerful and significant princesses and queens that played constructive role for the men of the family.

Famous Medieval Queens and Princesses

Some of the notable Middle Ages’ princesses and queens are;

  • Matilda of Flanders
  • Good Queen Maude
  • Empress Matilda
  • Timeline of Empress Matilda
  • Matilda of Boulogne
  • Eleanor of Aquitaine
  • Berengaria of Navarre
  • Isabelle of Angouleme
  • Eleanor of Provence
  • Eleanor of Castile
  • Isabella of France
  • Philippa of Hainault
  • Mary de Bohun
  • Catherine of Valois
  • Margaret of Anjou
  • Elizabeth Woodville
  • Anne Neville

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