Good Masters! Sweet Ladies!
Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village
Good Masters! Sweet Ladies!
Robert Byrd, Laura Amy Schlitz
Step back to an English village in 1255, where life plays out in dramatic vignettes illuminating twenty-two unforgettable characters. Winner of the Newbery Medal.Maidens, monks, and millers’ sons — in these pages, readers will meet them all. There’s Hugo, the lord’s nephew, forced to prove his manhood by hunting a wild boar; sharp-tongued Nelly, who supports her family by selling live eels; and the peasant’s daughter, Mogg, who gets a clever lesson in how to save a cow from a greedy landlord. There’s also mud-slinging Barbary (and her noble victim); Jack, the compassionate half-wit; Alice, the singing shepherdess; and many more. With a deep appreciation for the period and a grand affection for both characters and audience, Laura Amy Schlitz creates twenty-two riveting portraits and linguistic gems equally suited to silent reading or performance. Illustrated with pen-and-ink drawings by Robert Byrd — inspired by the Munich-Nuremberg manuscript, an illuminated poem from thirteenth-century Germany — this witty, historically accurate, and utterly human collection forms an exquisite bridge to the people and places of medieval England.

Book Details


  • Fiction
  • Historical Fiction

Age Level: 

  • 12 and up
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Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! is a clever compilation of monologues. Librarian Laura Amy Schlitz wrote each short story for the students of Park School to act out. She created several different characters to represent the different classes and rankings in medieval days. This book teaches you a lot about the brutality of medieval times. For instance, one story is about a girl whose parents tried to drown her when she was an infant because they couldn't support any more children. I would say this book falls into the coming-of-age/growing-up genre.

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