Impatient Griseldas: Women and the Perpetration of Violence in Sixteenth-Century Glasgow

Elizabeth Ewan

Abstract


There have been several recent studies of late medieval and early modern women's verbal assertiveness, but less attention has been paid to their role as aggressors in physical assaults. This article examines the gendered nature of such attacks in sixteenth-century Glasgow and argues that women's involvement in the perpetration of violence was more common than is often suggested. Examining and comparing the characteristics of female and male assaults, including the role of accomplices, the involvement of the household, the use and the type of weapons, and the forms of the attacks, the article argues that such studies can shed light on the gendered aspects of women's and men's lives in a sixteenth-century local community.

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