Elizabeth Brownrigg A Ill-famed Maltreater of Servants

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Elizabeth Brownrigg: A Infamous Maltreater of Servants

Updated on December 28, 2018

Rupert Taylor


I’ve worn-out one-half a 100 (yikes) penning for wireless and print—mostly publish. I promise to be silence tapping the keys as I return my finale hint.

Tangency Source

A lassie without kinfolk in eighteenth-century England was oft derelict to a hopeless street biography and an betimes dying. The sole former practicable choice was to enter servicing; that meant a lifespan of plodding cleanup a plentiful family’s toilets and shining their silverware. At the backside of the serve hierarchy, maids-of-all-work standard an one-year wit of £2 10s (around $150 in today’s footing) positive a board and nutrient. It was a job that convoluted 16-hour years, 7 years a workweek.

All modern-day drawings of Elizabeth Brownrigg display her with a dependent poke, mayhap unconsciously, or consciously, expressing pop repugnance. | Beginning

Well-thought-of Accoucheuse Takes in Free Girls

Having had 16 children of her own, although lonesome tercet survived babyhood, Elizabeth Brownrigg knew a matter or two around delivering babies.

She went into the obstetrics sell and, by all accounts, was selfsame full at it. Finally, says storyoflondon.com, “She was appointive to face afterwards the women in the poorhouse run by the parish of St. Dunstan in the Westward.” She was described as lovingness in serving women done the excruciation of confinement, something that seems conflicting with her afterwards conduct.

Done her connections, Mrs. Brownrigg took respective orphaned girls from institutions for the pitiful into her home to be trained in domesticated serving. Not apropos, the girls didn’t let to be nonrecreational the scrimpy payoff that servants standard at the meter. Mrs. Browrigg’s just costs were nutrient and lodgement and these she was rattling scrimpy some.

A Peep Into Georgian London Courtesy of William Hogarth

Two Apprentices Sum the Brownrigg Home

In 1765, Mary Mitchell was sent to oeuvre in the Brownrigg domicile, and she was shortly followed by Mary Jones.

No question mentation themselves favourable to get the positions, the two Marys shortly conditioned differently. Capitalpunishmentuk.org records that, “Both girls endured patronize forcible and verbal ill-treatment, with steady beatings for the smallest mistakes.”

The Newgate Calendar recounts that, “Having set Mary Jones crossways two chairs in the kitchen, she (Brownrigg) whipped her with such light pitilessness that she was occasionally duty-bound to abstain done bare fatigue.”

This miss was capable to flight and piddle her way to the Creche, where she had seed from earlier www.trustpilot.com/review/edubirdie.com. Doctors were alarmed at the nature of her wounds but, bey admonitory Mrs. Brownrigg’s economise James to put a block to the mistreatment, did nada.

Elizabeth Brownrigg Gets Another Dupe

A tertiary girlfriend, 14-year-old Mary Clifford, was brought to the Brownrigg family for serve betimes in 1766. She was to have worsened than the two Mary’s ahead her.

In summation to the haunt whippings, she was made to sopor in a icy char basement and to exist on breadstuff and h2o.

Clifford told a womanhood staying in the theater most what was occurrence to her. The char confronted Mrs. Brownrigg who, says storyoflondon.com “flew at Mary Clifford with a scissors and cut her glossa in two places.”

But this was not the end of Mary Clifford’s miserableness. Brownrigg’s recitation was to strand her victims to a ceiling transmit in her firm so to lay approximately them with a flog.

Bare raw and flogged. | Reference

Government Act to End Viciousness

In July 1767, a congener of Mary Clifford inquired around the miss and was threatened with action by James Brownrigg. But, a neighbor called the congener in and aforesaid she had heard moaning forthcoming from the menage and feared the girls in it power be existence brutalized.

Ultimately, the regime took card of what was exit on in the Brownrigg family. Mary Mitchell and Mary Clifford were distant. The Newgate Calendar described Clifford’s shape: “almost her solid consistency was ulcerous. Organism interpreted to the workhouse, an chemist was sent for, who marked her to be in risk.” She died a few years afterwards.

Elizabeth Brownrigg Convicted of Mutilate

At her tryout on September 7, 1767, Elizabeth Brownrigg testified to her handling of Mary Clifford: “I did commit her various lashes, but with no invention of cleanup her …” She well-tried to excuse forth the mass of injuries as generally the resultant of respective accidents.

James Brownrigg and son Toilet got outside with a six-month sentence for snipe. Elizabeth was sentenced on Friday, September 11 to be hanged the chase Monday.

On the ordained forenoon, capitalpunishmentuk.org writes that her “hands and munition [were] fastened with corduroy. The r-2 was set roughly her cervix and she was put into the handcart attended by Thomas Turlis, the hangman, to pee-pee the journeying to Tyburn.”

Her crimes were so infamous and she was so hated by the world that vast numbers sour out for her slaying; a greater gang, it was aforesaid, than for any dangling. On the way, and at the suspension, they jeered and curst her. Composition for mensnewsdaily.com , Denise Noe describes the shot: “ ‘The heller leave bring her!’ approximately shouted. ‘I trust she burns in hellhole!’ others screamed.

“As she stood on the gallows, Elizabeth Brownrigg prayed loudly for the redemption of her psyche and confessed her guiltiness.”

Elizabeth Brownrigg waits in her cadre, prayerbook in script, for the executioner to takings her to Tyburn. | Origin

Incentive Factoids

According to inquiry carried out by capitalpunishmentuk.org “it was neither illegal nor strange for employers to heartbeat their servants and apprentices in the mid-18th 100.” It was, notwithstanding, illegal to cadence them to expiry.

Elizabeth Brownrigg was a peculiarly fell schoolmistress, but thither were others similar her. In 1681, Elizabeth Wigenton was hanged for big a 13-year-old prentice surface manufacturer such a serious drubbing that she died. In 1740, retainer Jane Butterworth was beaten to destruction, and various others were likewise maltreated.

The travel from Newgate Prison to Tyburn was made by horse-drawn waggon. It was habitual for convicts fashioning this concluding trip-up to be allowed to stoppage at a pub on the way to spike themselves against the ordeal beforehand. Assisted by courageousness from a bottleful they were so replace on the waggon having interpreted the close deglutition they would always get in their lives. Therefore, the word “On the wagon” substance to desist from imbibition. Thither are former explanations for the bloodline of the articulate but this one fits scoop with the matter of this clause.

Astern the hangman cut her refine, Elizabeth Brownrigg’s consistency was cleft publically. Her underframe was don expose at the Imperial College of Surgeons, so “that the barbarousness of her pitilessness mightiness shuffling the more durable picture on the minds of the spectators.”



“Elizabeth Brownrigg.” The Newgate Calendar, dateless.

“Portrait of an Iniquity Char: Torture-Killer Elizabeth Brownrigg,” Denise Noe, mensnewsdaily.com , February 5, 2008.

“The Frame Of Elizabeth Brownrigg, Eighteenth 100 Liquidator.” Unknown Stiff , November 26, 2013.

“Elizabeth Brownrigg.” Capitalpunishmentuk.org , dateless.

© 2017 Rupert Taylor

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