Life Below Stairs, Part 5 – The “Fallen” Female Servant

Always fascinating!

Every Woman Dreams...

The life of a female servant in an English household of the 18th or 19th Century was a lonely one in terms of romantic entanglements, and we can only imagine how easily such a woman might be tempted to “taste” what her position denied her. The idea of a young girl, with aspirations of marriage and of love, entering her first position, only to encounter the handsome son of her wealthy employer to be seduced is a common motif in many historical romances. But how “common” was the situation?

Needless to say, the majority of the female servants were moral and respectable. They would not consider such an alliance, finding the “suggestion” of an assignation as repugnant. However, we must keep in mind that the choice of a marriage partner was greatly limited by their position. That was not to say that NONE achieved a higher position. According to Frank Huggett’s…

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