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In: Early Modern Privacy
In: Early Modern Privacy
In: Quid est sacramentum?
In: Ekphrastic Image-making in Early Modern Europe, 1500–1700
In: Quid est secretum?
Sources and Approaches
Privacy is often considered a modern phenomenon. Early Modern Privacy: Sources and Approaches challenges this view. This collection examines instances, experiences, and spaces of early modern privacy, and opens new avenues to understanding the structures and dynamics that shape early modern societies. Scholars of architectural history, art history, church history, economic history, gender history, history of law, history of literature, history of medicine, history of science, and social history detail how privacy and the private manifest within a wide array of sources, discourses, practices, and spatial programmes. In doing so, they tackle the methodological challenges of early modern privacy, in all its rich, historical specificity.

Contributors: Ivana Bičak, Mette Birkedal Bruun, Maarten Delbeke, Willem Frijhoff, Michael Green, Mia Korpiola, Mathieu Laflamme, Natacha Klein Käfer, Hang Lin, Walter S. Melion, Hélène Merlin-Kajman, Lars Cyril Nørgaard, Anne Régent-Susini, Marian Rothstein, Thomas Max Safley, Valeria Viola, Lee Palmer Wandel, and Heide Wunder.
In: Early Modern Privacy


In his educational treatise, the Instruction du prince chrétien (1642), André Rivet, the tutor of the future Willem II (1627-1650), presents his ideal of a virtuous prince well versed in the skills required to govern himself and his subjects. In the educational correspondences surrounding the future Dutch stadtholders we see some of these theoretical principles played out in epistolary practice. Reading the correspondence against the foil of Rivet’s treatise brings to the fore a number of characteristics of his ideal prince: the intimate educational nexus between tutor, parents, and pupil; the way in which the prince is taught to navigate the interrelated spheres of self, household, and society; and finally, the ways in which the dichotomy between public and private is at once dissolved and affirmed in the educational molding of an early modern prince.

Open Access
In: Journal of Early Modern History