Why visit the shops?

Taking up shopping as a pastime

Authored by: Susan Mosher Stuard

The Routledge History of the Renaissance

Print publication date:  March  2017
Online publication date:  March  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138898851
eBook ISBN: 9781315226217
Adobe ISBN: 9781351849463

10.4324/9781315226217.ch13

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Abstract

Why the sudden interest in attending the noisy, sometimes foul, and often rank open market that provisioned a town when convention dictated sending a servant for necessaries, even for indulgences? Town markets had been around a long time without attracting people with the discretionary cash to spend for pleasure. On the grounds that markets were known for raucous folk bawling their wares a person could find a more pleasant part of town for a stroll: There never was so noble a garden As the Mercato Vecchio at that time … Every morning the street is filled With cartloads of Goods, and so great is the Throng that many stand waiting to pass. Noblemen and ladies stand to one side And often see the costerwomen and The gambling hucksters come to blows.

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