stewholder

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stewholder

Post by tony h » Sun Sep 29, 2013 7:26 pm

I hadn't heard of stewholder before and wondered whether there is a play between stewholder and brothal keeper

The Brothels of Southwark, 1598, John Stow

In a Parliament holden Westminster the 8. of Henry the second , it was ordayned by the commons and confirmed by the king and Lords, that diuers constitutions for ever bee kept within that Lordship or franchise, according to the olde customes that had been there vsed tie out of mind. Amongest the which these following were some, vz.
That no stewholder or his wife should let or staye any single Woman to goe and come freely at all times when they listed.
No stewholder to keep any woman to borde, but she to borde abroad at her pleasure.


Note that the first paragraph was presumably written 1598 whereas the quoted lines Parliament holden Westminster the 8. of Henry the second indicate 1165
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With the right context almost anything can sound appropriate.

Re: stewholder

Post by Erik_Kowal » Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:07 am

Tony, on this history website there appears the following text which is taken from 'Bridge warde without [including Southwark]', A Survey of London, by John Stow: Reprinted from the text of 1603 (1908), pp. 52-69.

It expands on your quoted fragment, and also confirms the presumption contained in your question that a stewholder is the same thing as a brothel-keeper:
Liber manuscript. The Stewe on the bank side.

Next on this banke was sometime the Bordello or stewes, a place so called, of certaine stew houses priuiledged there, for the repaire of incontinent men to the like women, of the which priuiledge I haue read thus.

In a Parliament holden at Westminster the 8. of Henry the second, it was ordayned by the commons and confirmed by the king and Lords, that diuers constitutions for euer should bee kept within that Lordship or franchise, according to the olde customes that had been there vsed time out of mind. Amongest the which these following were some, vz.

That no stewholder or his wife should let or staye any single Woman to goe and come freely at all times when they listed.

No stewholder to keepe any woman to borde, but she to borde abroad at her pleasure.

To take no more for the womans chamber in the weeke then foureteene pence.

Not to keepe open his dores vpon the holydayes.

Not to keepe any single woman in his house on the holy dayes, but the Bayliffe to see them voyded out of the Lordship.

No single woman to be kept against her will that would leaue her sinne.

No stewholder to receiue any Woman of religion, or any mans wife.

No single woman to take money to lie with any man, but shee lie with him all night till the morrow.

No man to be drawn or inticed into any stewhouse.

The Constables, Balife, and others euery weeke to search euery stewhouse.

No stewholder to keepe any woman that hath the perilous infirmitie of burning, nor to sell bread, ale, flesh, fish, wood, coale, or any victuals, &c.
The list quoted by John Stow appears to indicate that although the brothel was already a well-established type of enterprise in the Britain of Henry II (or at least it was in London), it was regarded with disdain by the authorities, which were attempting to regulate it (though not yet to ban it).

Unfortunately, I can't say whether there is a play on words involving stew and broth[el].
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Re: stewholder

Post by tony h » Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:53 am

Erik: thank you.
My question was : is there a play between the use of stew and broth (being stew keeper and brothal keeper). And whether this has mutated over time.
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With the right context almost anything can sound appropriate.

Re: stewholder

Post by Edwin F Ashworth » Mon Sep 30, 2013 8:31 am

From the Online Etymology Dictionary:

stew (v.)
c.1400, "to bathe in a steam bath," from Old French estuver (French étuver) "bathe, stew," of uncertain origin. . . .
stew (n.)c.1300, "vessel for cooking," from stew (v.). Later "heated room" (late 14c.) . . .The obsolete slang meaning "brothel" (mid-14c., usually plural, stews) is from an earlier sense of "public bath house," carried over from Old French and reflecting the reputation of such houses.


And

brothel (n.)
"bawdy house," 1590s, shortened from brothel-house, from brothel "prostitute" (late 15c.), earlier "vile, worthless person" of either sex (14c.), from Old English broðen past participle of breoðan "deteriorate, go to ruin," from Proto-Germanic *breuthanan, variant of *breutanan "to break" (cf. brittle). In 16c. brothel-house was confused with unrelated bordel (see bordello) and the word shifted meaning from a person to a place.

Seems just to be a souper-coincidence.
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Re: stewholder

Post by Erik_Kowal » Mon Sep 30, 2013 10:36 am

'Bawdy house' = bawd and lodging?
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Re: stewholder

Post by Bobinwales » Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:27 pm

So, are the offspring of such liaisons bred and bawd?
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Re: stewholder

Post by Erik_Kowal » Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:49 pm

Not to mention ill-bred and bored.
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Re: stewholder

Post by Ken Greenwald » Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:39 am

aaa
Here are a few earthshaking observations on stewholder:

According to the OED the earliest appearance in English print of stewholder is from circa 1430 (see quote below). This is 265 years after the original Henry II version and, if the OED is correct, this implies that there had been a different word for ‘stewholder’ in that period of time. John Stow’s Survey of London appeared in 1598, so he apparently made use of a word that had been around for about 168 years. It should be noted that the ‘stew-holder’ rule in the 1430 quote is an abbreviated version of the last one on John Stow’s above list (see Erik's posting).

And for the record, here’s the OED’s listing and quotes:

STEW-HOLDER noun (Obsolete): A brothel [[holder]]. (Developed from sense 3, on account of the frequent use of the public hot-air bath-houses for immoral purposes.) Sense 3 — Stew: A heated room used for hot air or vapour baths: hence, a hot bath.
<circa 1430 “That no Stew-holder keep noo Woman wythin his Hous that hath any Sycknesse of Brenning.”—Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London (1665-), Vol. 30, page 842.

<1598 “In a Parliament holden at Westminster the 8. of Henry the second, it was ordained . . . That no stewholder or his wife should let or stay any single woman to go and come freely at all times.”—Suruay of London, page331>
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Ken – September 30, 2013
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Re: stewholder

Post by Bobinwales » Tue Oct 01, 2013 10:21 am

"Brenning"?

All I can find is "to burn".

That, and 'king' in Welsh is 'brenin', but I can't think that that has too much to do with it.
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Re: stewholder

Post by Ken Greenwald » Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:33 pm

aaa
Bob, It looks to me like Sycknesse of Brenning is ‘sickness of burning’ or ‘infirmity of burning’ (see last rule in Stow’s list). And if you’ve ever had the clap (or worse), I think you’d know what they’re talking about – STD! (>:)
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Ken – October 1, 2013
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Re: stewholder

Post by Bobinwales » Tue Oct 01, 2013 7:00 pm

Burned the stew eh, Ken?
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End of topic.
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