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Thursday, October 04, 2007

La nouvelle maison rustique -
New Country House

An amazingly popular French version 'L'agriculture et maison rustique' was first published in Paris 1564, it became a Renaissance bestseller with at least 80 editions by the fall of Napoleon. The work was translated into the English, German, Dutch, Italian and Scandinavian languages. It is a veritable encyclopedia of country living, with large sections on orchards and fruit.

"This work contains all that relates to the goods of countryside, the means of improving them, of increasing, of maintaining and of putting forward. Choice, acquisition, masonry, different productions, and all that is relative; grounds, wood, meadows, vines, etc; horses, cattle and other animals. Best culture of the grounds and the gardens; the most essential matters of the rural right; hunting; fishing, and recreations of the countryside; a small treaty of botany and pharmacy, with simple and easy remedies. Finally practical operations and of arts and the trades most useful for the countryside. The whole enriched by figures, and made more useful, even essential to the owners of the grounds, the amateurs, administrators, managers and farmers." cited 10-4-07 http://www.histoire-genealogie.com/spip.php?article669

A true handbook of agriculture, the New Country House proposes to answer all the questions of an owner concerning the maintenance of his field and the art of controlling its personnel.

My copy of the 10th edition, 1755, has at the very end of Tome II a small section on recipes from which I will share some of the best dishes that can still be replicated today--enjoy!

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