Young noble women would also
be taught the principles of the Medieval
Code of Chivalry and
Love and would join the spectators at
The Education of
Medieval Noble Women
The education of Medieval Noble Women concentrated on the
practical as opposed to academic. Young noble women as young as
seven girls would be sent away from their home to live with another
noble family. There she would be taught a range of subjects and skills.
Manners and etiquette were of prime importance, including how to curtsey
and how to mix with the greatest nobles in the land. Time would be spent
learning how to dance and ride. Archery were also taught to young noble
women. These young girls were expected to act as servants to the older
ladies of the castle.
Age of Consent in Medieval Times
The romance of Courtly love was
completely opposite to the practicalities of Medieval marriage. The Age
of Consent - With parental permission it was legal for boys to marry at
fourteen and girls at twelve. A betrothal often took place when the
prospective bride and groom were as young as 7 years old and in the case
of Higher nobility many were betrothed as babies. But a marriage was
only legal once the marriage had been consummated.
Noble Women Women and Marriage
Noble women had very little, if any, choice in who her husband might be.
Marriages were frequently arranged so that both families involved would
benefit. Marriages would be arranged to bring prestige or wealth to the
family of Medieval Noble Women. Marriage for love was a rare occurrence.
Medieval Noble Women were expected to bring a dowry to the marriage.
A dowry was an amount of money, goods, and property that the bride would
bring to the marriage. The law gave a husband full rights over his wife,
whether she was a Noble woman or a commoner. She effectively became his
property. A wealthy marriage of a Noble woman was celebrated by nine
days of feasting and jousting.
Married Medieval Noble Women
After marriage Medieval Noble Women were expected to run the
households but their main duty was to provide children. Large families
were the norm in Medieval Times as the mortality rate for children and
babies was so high. Many Noble woman made arrangements for the care of
their children in case they themselves died during childbirth. The life
expectancy of a woman in Medieval Times was just forty years. Most
Medieval woman would become pregnant between 4 and 8 times. A woman
during the Medieval times of the Middle Ages would expect to lose at least one child.
Appearance of Medieval Noble Women
The appearance of a noble woman during the Medieval times of the Middle Ages was important. A
woman aged quickly during this era due to constant child bearing.
Numerous pregnancies took their toll on a woman's body. The diet of
Medieval Noble Women during the Medieval times of the Middle Ages lacked Vitamin C which resulted in
bad teeth and bleeding gums. To retain the appearance of youth a Noble
woman of the middle Ages might even dye her hair yellow with a mixture
of saffron, cumin seed, celandine and oil. Face make-up was applied to
acquire a pale look. A pale complexion was so desirable that women were
bled to achieve the desired look. Face paint made from plant roots and
leaves was also applied.