Experienced English House-Keeper


SKU: 003759 Categories: ,


[003759] Raffald, Elizabeth. The Experienced English House-Keeper, for the Use and Ease of Ladies, House-Keepers, Cooks &c. Wrote Purely from Practice. Manchester: J. Harrop [Printer] and Sold By Fletcher and Anderson and By Eliz. Raffald, 1769. First Edition. 8vo. Full Calf. Good. [5], ii-iii, [1], 2-362pp, [1], ii-xi, [1], plates. Full calf, original covers, later rebacked, raised bands, spine in six panels

Lightly browned and lightly foxed throughout, folding plates creased and slightly chipped to edges. Signed by the author at the start of the text (ensuring authenticity)

Elizabeth Raffald (1733-81), cook and author, was initially a housekeeper, later marrying and settling in Manchester having sixteen daughters in eighteen years. Initially a confectioner, later a publican, “she was a woman of much shrewdness, tact and strength of will, and had, with other accomplishments, a good knowledge of French. She gave lessons to young ladies in cookery and domestic economy … R. Baldwin, the London publisher, is reported to have paid Mrs. Raffald £1400 for the copyright in 1773. Her portrait, from a painting by P. McMorland, first came out in the eighth edition, 1782 … In 1772 she compiled and published the first ‘Directory of Manchester and Salford’ … she also wrote a book on midwifery … but did not live to print it” (DNB)

Oxford, pages 98-99, Cagle 944; Maclean (calling for a portrait frontispiece, but this is erroneous), page 121; Wellcome IV:463; Vicaire, page 727 (for the third edition) and Bitting, page 387 (for the second edition). ESTC shows eight copies in the UK and nine in the US