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The Paston Letters
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  1. The Paston Letters Life in 1400’s England *Write the slide or bullet point into your notes when you see an asterisk.*

  2. *Why read 600 year old letters? • Non-fiction (“real”), primary source • Insight into daily life of the past. • Comparison with current day life: • Legal system (especially property ownership) • Police, fire, ambulance, military • Communication (internet, phones, twitter, texting, etc.) • Social and economic mobility

  3. Who were the Pastons? • Clement Paston– Granddad of John Paston • Yeoman (commoner, farmer) • Took advantage of black plague – acquired cheap land • Borrowed money – sent son (William) to law school • Died 1419

  4. Who were the Pastons? • William Paston – Father of John Paston • Survived plagues • Went to law school • Became a judge • Married Agnes Berry, acquired more land • Lived at Oxnead

  5. Onxnead, Near Norwitch

  6. *Who were the Pastons? • John Paston I and Margaret Paston • Law school at Cambridge • Became a judge • Married Margaret Mauteby– acquired two manors • Befriended and became lawyer to Sir John Fastolff • Main beneficiary of Falstoff’s will • Falstoff’s heirs contest will for decades (forcible, legal) • John to London often, defending property claims • Survived by John eldest, John younger, Margery

  7. Works Cited • Self, Cameron. "Oxnead." Literary Norfolk. Cameron Self, n.d. Web. 2 Dec. 2012. • Ibeji, Mike. "Paston Family Letters." BBC History. BBC, 17 Feb. 2011. Web. 2 Dec. 2012. <http://www.bbc.co.uk>.