Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(1,511 words)

1. Social status

Smallholders constituted a hard-to-define class within the highly stratified world of the early modern peasantry [3]. They occupied a place between the self-sufficient full peasants who could afford a team (Harness) and the sub-peasant classes – owners of tiny farms or allotments (Cottager) or totally unlanded (Laborer, unlanded) – classes which even before 1800 constituted the majority of the rural population in most parts of Europe (Rural society).

As a rule, sm…

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Jatzlauk, Manfred, “Smallholder”, 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 September 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_022276>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180208

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