What was life like for children in medieval London?
These bone ice skates remind us that while children’s lives in medieval London were very different to today, there was also time for playing. Many children did not survive childhood due to illness and accidents. Children only went to school if their parents were rich enough. If you were poor you went to work as soon as you were able to – sometimes as young as seven.
Many children went into service, working as maids, page boys and other jobs in wealthier households. If you could afford it you would be sent to learn a trade as an apprentice from the age of fourteen. But there was also time for playing – small pewter dolls and toys have been found and a description of the late 1100s describes boys playing ball and in the winter going sledging and skating, using animal bone skates.
- What were houses like in medieval London?
- Was religion important in everyday life?
- What was life like for poor Londoners?
- What was life like for rich Londoners?
- What was life like for children in medieval London? (this page)
- Further information
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