The Farmer’s Wife Introduction ~1780

The Farmer’s Wife Cookbook.

Complete Title: The Farmer’s wife, or, Complete country housewife : containing … to which is added the art of breeding and managing song birds in general, likewise a variety of receipts in cookery, and other particulars well worthy the attention of women of all ranks residing in the country.

Whew! What a title! I’ve been meaning to come back to this book for some time. Published in 1780, the author’s target audience is the English farmer housewife. The idea of mixing animal husbandry, recipes, and home brewing into one manuscript is novel. Below is the front matter. You’ll notice right away that the printing style is different than that of the late 1800s. Another noteworthy aspect is the Contents, which is arranged alphabetically instead of by category of food (e.g., soups, meat, etc.). Cookbooks went through several distinct organizational phases, including: alphabetical, category, menu, and calendar.

Question: If you were to put together a parallel cookbook title for surviving in modern times, what might it include?

Check out the book here.



…And other Particulars well worthy the Attention of Women of all Ranks residing in the COUNTRY.

Instructions, full and plain, we give,
To teach the Farmer’s Wife,
With Satisfaction, how to live,
The happy Country Life.

Lovely woodcut.Farmer'sWife_Frontispiece


More Fun Discoveries from Antique Cookbooks

5 thoughts on “The Farmer’s Wife Introduction ~1780

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  1. This cookbook is better than mine that states it is a *blue ribbon* Farmer’s Housewife cookbook that was purchased from Amazon.

    The one you speak of here reminds me of my husband’s grandmother’s *Becky* cookbook (no one EVER called her Rebecca) given to me which makes much more sense. It even has directions on how to scald milk and walks you beautifully through other recipes.

    Unlike according to Steve, speaking of other inferior processed foods that can be easily scraped out into the garage can like a box of mac and powder cheese. :o) To think, I use to LIKE this when my mom made it… ugh!

    Thank you so much for the link!

    To country life and happy Friday, everyone!!

    Liked by 1 person

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