Linda Porter

Recipes for Survival

Lady Fanshawe’s Receipt Book: The Life and Times of a Civil War Heroine

By

Atlantic Books 416pp £20 order from our bookshop

What was it like to be a Royalist lady during the English Revolution? The image of Cavalier women, lavishly clad in silks with plunging necklines, their ringlets pulled tightly back from their foreheads, still has a romantic attraction, even if the popular view of women in English history is shaped by endless accounts of Henry VIII’s six wives. We have forgotten our Civil Wars, our republic and the ferment of ideas that eventually found fertile ground in the American colonies. In a world turned upside down, it was women who kept families going, providing a semblance of security and continuity where there were only uncertainty and hardship, defending homes and reputations, trying to safeguard dwindling financial resources in the increasingly desperate hope that there would, one day, be a return to order and a society in which they were not the defeated. Their stories deserve wider attention. Now Lucy Moore has brought one such Civil War heroine, Lady Ann Fanshawe, out of the shadows, using her recipes as a basis for exploring her life.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Full of invention which, at its most pedestrian, is eminently Victorian, and at its most unrestrained wildly imagi… ,
    • 'What in other hands could have been a dry, pedantic account of Christianity’s birth and evolution becomes in Holla… ,
    • RT : One of my favourite literary magazines is celebrating 40 years this year. Here is the September edition of… ,
    • 'Now that the Thames is too fast-flowing to freeze, its spirit’s devotees ... have found other climes for their pri… ,
    • 'Bythell glowers past his till at a world in slow free fall.' on the travails of a second-hand book… ,
    • 'It is a scent of animal wrath, of instinctive need, of brutal life which affects the cultured nostrils of our civi… ,
    • 'The day produced countless stories of chance, of people taking one route or another without realising that the dec… ,