A Little Commonwealth Essay

768 Words4 Pages
The modern image of the New England Puritans, as one perceives, is a dark one: the Puritans, religious dissenters who valued propriety and order, are seen as a witch-hunters, suspicious tribe, and their very name carries connotations of grimness and primness. Where as the book “A Little Commonwealth” reflects the scenario in which the Puritans lived. Most of the houses in the Puritan Colonial time were small, dark, brooding and sparsely furnished. This allowed the Puritans to use every available space in the home. For examples, most of the furnishings and utensils used by the Puritans had more than one use…a trunk would be used not only for storage but also for sitting upon or maybe even a table. Moreover because of their lifestyle, they…show more content…
Most of the families, within a given community at a given point in time, exemplified the basic model of husband, wife, and children. While the family unit was close, the Puritans would often had contract help, hopefully by formal apprenticeship, on their children due to lack of household space. Servants lived on quite intimate terms within their new family but not equally. In the case of sickness of the “Master”, when the Master was well and, no longer felt the need to have a servant, or passed away, the contract was deemed fulfilled. In some cases, the Master, in his will, would make a specific bequeath to the servant in of recognition of his or her friendship and affection to that servant showed, but this was rare. Though uncommon Negro’s and Indians servants were usually considered part of the dying mans estate and were passed on to his heirs along with others sorts of properties. Unlike today’s adolescence, Puritan children knew from a very early age where they belong in the family, what was expected of them and what they would be doing probably for the rest of their lives. The elders believed the children “…should not know they have a will of their own”. From the beginning they were dressed and treated as miniature adults and learned their “stations” by sharing in the activities of their parents. This helped them mature early and take their respective roles in the society. Given that the Puritan’s were a religious group of people, still the
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