Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management

Author – Isabella Mary Beeton, popularly known as Mrs. Beeton, was born on 12 March, 1836 in London, England. Her father died when she was still a child and her mother soon married with a widower who had had four children. After finishing her school in Germany, Beeton went back to England as an accomplished pianist. However, with a total of 21 people in her family in England, Isabella had to take care of household chores and babysitting, being the eldest of the five daughters.

Context – The book was a collection of all the articles Mrs. Beeton published on The Englishwomen’s Domestic Magazines between 1859-1861, a time known as the “Victorian Era,” during which the Great Britain was prosperous and peaceful under the reign of Queen Victoria.

Language – Day to day word choices and phrases yet cultivated in terms of logic and flow. A number of poems were included to illustrate certain points, which shows some sophistication of Mrs.Beeton.

Audience – Mainly published in magazines for housewives, Mrs.Beeton’s articles were read by women who ran the housemanagement.

Intention – By encompassing almost every aspect of being a exceptional housewife, Mrs.Beeton’s book was a work that tried to help those housewives who wanted to manage the house better so as to be qualified wives; furthermore, to make men satisfied.

Message – The book talks about, essentially, what good qualities a good housewife should have, such as keeping a habit of rising up early and being economic. It serves as a guidance to the field of household management, which starts with a typical day of a woman running chores ranged from finance to socialization. Following the behavioral suggestions comes all the recipes of foods and drinks. The book as a whole works as a “housewife’s bible” because it sets up a standard and provides methods to help women become better at running chores at home.

3 thoughts on “Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management

  1. I agree with your message. In addition to your idea, the author also defines many kind of ideal behaviors from several aspects such as dress, relationships with others ,and cleanness. I understood that ideal household has to pay attention to various kinds of matters.

  2. Nice ACLAIM. I like that you reference her book as a “housewife’s bible.” Beeton went into incredible detail and considered every aspect of a mistress’s duties. Her book became an instant success and sold 60,000 copies in its first year, thus demonstrating its bible-like qualities among a huge population.

  3. I also really liked your the reference you made to the book being a “housewife’s bible”. It was sophisticated and poignant but yet it was simple enough to flow and be understandable. I also liked your intention and the inference you made about Mrs. Beeton’s book being about making their men happy.

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