Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(677 words)

1. Definition

Gossip (German klatsch, French bavardage) was defined in reference works of the 18th century as “common vice” that primarily brought shame upon the person who gossiped [1]. By the end of the 18th century, if not earlier, gossip was associated with female servants (Servants in husbandry) as the sort of talk that “spins out all kinds of disagreements and, with unnecessary elaborations and expatiations... arouses strife and rancor” [2]. In the usage of the time, gossip refe…

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Hohkamp, Michaela, “Gossip”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 30 January 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_022255>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180915

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