Thursday, June 11, 2020

The History of Childhood

From Ancient Origins:
By the early tenth century AD, a more formal education provided by towns began to take hold in England. However, it was in learning to read and write in English rather than Latin, and only open to boys. Once again, similar to the Greco-Roman times, women were given informal education at home.
It would not be until the 1200s that formal education would return for both boys and girls. Additionally, it would consist of learning the Latin alphabet for literacy in their own language. By the twelfth century, laws appeared in both society and the catholic church stating that certain labors and responsibilities were not fit for children to perform until the age of 12 or 14. Within the medieval times, it appeared that further efforts were made in creating a separation between childhood and adulthood. According to Orme, he states
 "It came to regard children under the age of puberty as too immature to commit sins or to understand adult concepts and duties. On these grounds, they were forbidden to marry, excused from confessing to a priest, and excluded from sharing in the sacrament of the eucharist. Secular justice developed a similar concept of an age of legal responsibility beginning at about puberty, although there are occasional references to children receiving adult punishments." (Orme, 2005)
Though education and child-rearing did continue through the way of the home and the church, a question remains why an appreciation for childhood reappeared by the end of the 1200s. What could have been the reasons for this? (Read more.)

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