Medieval Fatherhood

The ‘hands-on’ parenting style, so often thought to be unique to modern western society, has deep roots in the family life of the Middle Ages, argues Rachel Moss.

Illustration from 'Le livre des Proprietes des Choses' by Barthelemy Anglais, 15th century. Fathers matter. That is the message given by psychologists and sociologists, by government think tanks and by grassroots organisations, such as Families Need Fathers. Recent research suggests that good relationships between fathers and their offspring result in higher educational attainment, greater emotional well-being and fewer behavioural problems.

To read this article in full you need to be either a print + archive subscriber, or else have purchased access to the online archive.

If you are already a subscriber, please ensure you are logged in. 

Buy Subscription | Buy Online Access | Log In

If you are logged in and still cannot read the article, please email

Get Miscellanies, our free weekly long read, in your inbox every week