VAF member Roger Leech presented on this topic at the VAF meeting in Annapolis prior to publication of the book in 2014.
This study, covering the period c.1000 to c1800AD, is of the medieval and early modern houses of Bristol. Based partly on the survey of surviving early buildings, the study also makes extensive use of documentary evidence and records of houses now demolished to analyse how town houses reveal the social structure and aspirations of Bristol’s citizens in this period. The development of the town and city in the medieval and the early modern period is examined, then aspects of life on the urban tenement plot. The principal house types of the medieval period are fully explored, showing aspirations and separate identity of the urban elite in the largest of such houses. This book demonstrates the possibilities for using documentary and physical evidence to reconstruct the fabric of a city and the social character of its different parts. Particularly important is the development of a new way of looking at medieval and early modern urban housing, focusing specifically on the relationships between different building types and changes in building forms, both of which reveal the complex character of an evolving commercial city.