Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(785 words)

In early modern German, Ledige (“single, unmarried”) was a specialized collective term for the unmarried youth of a location, especially in rural communities (still common in the 20th century in southern German villages) [5. 76]. In everyday use, it referred primarily to the totality of unmarried male young people (alongside other regional terms like Buben [1. 459], Burschen [2. 548], Knaben[3. 1313], and Knechte [4. 1381] in German-speaking areas; also French garçons and varlets or Italian garzóni). That we are dealing with a term for youth groups is shown…

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Gestrich, Andreas, “Ledige”, 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 26 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_023226>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20190801

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