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Emory Women Writers Resource Project Collections:
Emory Women Writers Resource Project

The Ladies Best Companion, an electronic edition

by Amelia Chambers [Chambers, Amelia]

date:
source publisher:
collection: Early Modern through the 18th Century

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PREFACE

AS the following collection of receipts cannot fail of being useful, both to families and private persons, I can only assure the reader that they are the result of long experience, every one of them having been many times tried, and none of them ever proved ineffectual.

It is well known, that the woman who is ignorant of cookery is neither qualified to be a mistress or a servant; for the dressing of victuals, either in a plain or a more polite manner it so essential a part of female education, that those who neglect to acquire some knowledge of it, labour under many difficulties in their advanced years, and many have lost very valuables [sic] places for the want of such necessary qualifications. But as it too often happens that women neglect to learn those accomplishments in their younger years, and as the memory is not able to retain every thing, I have undertaken this work for the use of my Countrywomen, and | | iv am well convinced that it will answer the most valuable purposes, let their situation in life be either high or low.

With respect to cookery, every thing has been inserted according to the practice of the present age, and nothing left out that could be useful, so that either the mistress, housekeeper, cook, or servant may at all times find directions for the dressing of victuals in any manner whatever.

By this assistance, the mistress of a family will be enabled to give proper directions for preparing every necessary entertainment and those under them will be directed how to act in a proper manner, by only turning to the receipt in the book, where they will find the quantities of the ingredients properly arranged, so that no mistake can happen, unless they wilfully neglect to abide by the instructions.

But besides cookery, which is, absolutely necessary, less or more in every family, there are proper directions given for all sorts of confectionary; the best methods for preparing made wines, and the most approved rules for pickling. The brewing of such malt liquors as are used in families, is pointed out in the clearest manner, | | v so that the person who attends to the different directions will be enabled to discharge all sorts of domestick duties.

The rules laid down for the preservation of beauty are, not only simple, but all of them have been tried, and may be used at any time without the least danger, they having never been known to fail of success.

As many families are situated at a distance from gentlemen of the physical profession, and as some disorders may be cured in an easy manner, I have here inserted receipts for such diseases and complaints, as are common in general, both in children, and those of more advanced years; to all which I have added proper instructions, to servants in cleaning furniture, washing, smoothing, and many other articles, absolutely necessary to be known by those who would acquire the character either of industrious house-wives, or good servants.

Upon the whole, nothing has been wanting to make this the most complete book of the kind ever yet offered to the public, and the author doubts not of meeting with the approbation of those who peruse it.