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Achat pour les épiceries exotiques en mi-18ème-siècle Angleterre

By Jon Stobart


The eighteenth-century witnessed rapid growth in the consumption of exotic goods in Britain; not just the sugar and spice of the title, but also tea, coffee and chocolate. This growth prompted a surge in the ownership of furnishings and equipment for the consumption of these new commodities, including tea tables, kettles and cups, coffee mills and chocolate pots, and sugar bowls. Whilst British manufacturers were soon able to provide many of these durable goods, the consumables themselves remained ‘exotic’ imports. This paper begins by outlining the ways in which imported groceries were promoted through trade cards. These placed great emphasis on the exotic nature of these goods, situating the consumer in the world economy and portraying them as cosmopolitan. This stands in stark contrast to the more mundane processes whereby sugar, spices, tea and coffee were actually acquired. Drawing on detailed analysis of probate inventories and shopkeepers’ account books, the paper argues that these goods were widely available and that shopping for them had become an everyday occurrence in the second quarter of the eighteenth century. Rather than constructing an identity as cosmopolitan, the consumption of tea, coffee and sugar was more closely linked to status and sociabilit

Topics: HF5428, HF5801, HC260.C6, DA498
Publisher: Société Française d’Histoire Urbaine
Year: 2011
OAI identifier:
Provided by: NECTAR
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