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Mansions of misery: a biography of the Marshalsea debtors' prison

Mansions of misery: a biography of the Marshalsea debtors' prison

White, Jerry, 1949- author

A micro-history of London in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries - the story of the capital's notorious debtors' prison, immortalised by Charles Dickens. For Londoners debt was part of everyday life. The poor depended on credit from shopkeepers and landlords to survive, but the rich too were often deep in debt to finance their luxurious lifestyle. When creditors lost their patience both rich and poor would be thrown into one the capital's debtors'prisons where they could linger for years. The most notorious of them was the Marshalsea. In the eighteenth century, the prison became a byword for misery; in the words of one of its inmates, it was 'hell in epitome'. But the Marshalsea was also a microcosm of London life, and whereas its poorest inmates lived in fear of starvation, the wealthy carried on as they would in the outside world, employing servants and entertaining guests

Paperback, Book. English.
Published London: Vintage Books, 2017
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Available at Balham Library.

  • Balham Library – One available in 942.16409

    Barcode Shelfmark Loan type Status
    90300000594886 942.16409 Adult Non-Fiction Available


Statement of responsibility: Jerry White
ISBN: 0099593327, 9780099593324
Note: Includes bibliographical references and index.
Note: Originally published: London: The Bodley Head, 2016.
Physical Description: 320 pages : illustrations (black and white, and colour), maps (black and white) ; 24 cm
Subject: Marshalsea Prison (Southwark, London, England); History.; London (England) Social life and customs 19th century.; London (England) Social life and customs 18th century.