Household account book, 1656-1679 (Par 384/6/1)


Chosen by Danae Tankard, Senior Lecturer in History, University of Chichester


Photograph of Horsted Keynes church, c 1950 (PH 15,125)

Giles Moore (1617-1679) was rector of Horsted Keynes from 1656 until 1679. During this time he kept a household account book (catalogued as the ‘Journal of Giles Moore’), providing a detailed record of his household expenditure.  His book is organised by types of expenditure, for example ‘linen’, ‘dairy’, ‘servants’ wages’, ‘books’, ‘gardener’, ‘physic’, rather than chronologically.  He records his own expenditure, including money spent on his niece, Martha Mayhew, who came to live with him in 1667.  The book does not record his wife’s expenditure who presumably accounted for this herself.


Alphabetical index of items purchased by Giles Moore (Par 384/6/1)

Moore’s account book provides a fascinating insight into the domestic and material culture of a provincial clergyman. Household account books are not especially rare for the late 17th century, usually kept by those of gentry or equivalent status.  However, Moore was a particularly meticulous record keeper and records not only what he purchased but who he purchased it from as well as money spent on the craftsmen and labourers who worked in and around his house.  I have used Moore’s book to look at his clothing purchases and those made on behalf of his niece.

Moore’s account book was edited by Ruth Bird and published in 1971 by the Sussex Record Society.

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