This fifteenth-century instruction book- the first written by a woman for women- offers a firsthand glimpse into how medieval women actually lived. Conceived as a companion to her history of women, The Book of the City of Ladies, Christine de Pizan wrote A Medieval Woman's Mirror of Honor to offer practical advice on how to liv an honorable, "noble" life and thus to qualify for entry into her allegorical, utopian city.
Christine addresses every social class. First, she speaks to women in power- princesses and members of the aristocracy- discussing how to use and retain power, as well as how to revel in it. Then she devotes herself to women of other classes, from merchants' wives, craftswomen, laborers, artists, and servants to the young, the widowed, the very poor, and even prostitutes. Among other topics, she discusses how to run a large household, entertain, negotiate for goods and services, preside over a domain, raise and educate children, contend with fashion, counteract gossip and envy, conduct a love affair, manage one's in-laws, and handle legal problems.
Just as Christine de Pizan intended in 1405 when this book was written, A Medieval Woman's Mirror of Honor charms and entertains as it enlightens. For the modern reader, it provides a unique view into the medieval world, the history of women, and the social as well as intellectual history of the period.
The reason the Dark Ages were called that is not because they were necessarily dark but because we don't know much about them. Here is a book which will help you see the women of the medieval era in a completely different light.