From "Lark Rise to Candleford" by Flora Thompson, ref. 7,
first published 1939.
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Flora Thompson was born in an Oxfordshire village in 1876, and she is writing here about conditions in 1890

From p31.. 'Poverty's no disgrace, but tis' a great inconvenience' was a common saying among the Lark Rise people; but that put the case too mildly, for their poverty was no less than a hampering drag upon them. Everybody had enough to eat, and a shelter which, though it fell far short of modern requirements, satisfied them. Coal . and a pint of paraffin HAD to be squeezed out of the weekly wage; but for boots, clothes, illnesses, holidays, amusements and household renewals there was no provision whatever. How did they manage? .

. ( p32) But, in spite of their poverty and the worry and anxiety attending it, they were not unhappy, and, though poor, there was nothing sordid about their lives. 'The nearer the bone, the sweeter the meat', they used to say, and they were getting very near the bone from which their country ancestors had fed. Their children and children's children would have to depend wholly upon whatever was carved for them from the communal joint, and for their pleasure upon the mass enjoyments of a new era. But for that generation there was still a small picking left to supplement the weekly wage. They had their home-cured bacon, their 'bit o' leazings', their small wheat or barley patch on the allotment; their knowledge of herbs for the homely simples, and the wild fruits and berries of the countryside for jam, jellies, and wine, and round about them as part of their lives were the last relics of country customs and the last echoes of country songs, ballads and game rhymes. This last picking, though meagre, was sweet

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