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1498 - 1498
Spanish ambassador's comments on Scottish women
Don Pedro de Ayala was the Spanish ambassador at James IV's court. The description below comes from a letter he wrote to Ferdinand and Isabella on 25 July 1498 describing Scotland and the king. The women he describes were most likely the elite women of the royal court.
The women are courteous in the extreme. I mention this because they are really honest, though very bold. They are absolute mistresses of their houses, and even of their husbands, in all things concerning the administration of their property, income as well as expenditure. They are very graceful and handsome women. They dress much better than here (England), and especially as regards the head-dress, which is, I think, the handsomest in the world.
Don Pedro de Ayala in Early Travellers in Scotland ed P. Hume Brown (Edinburgh: David Douglas, 1891), 47.