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Social World

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Chapter Summary

During the first years in which Otto van Eck kept his diary, his world was still small and sparsely populated. By 1794 the people populating Otto's diary have risen in number to twenty-eight, and they include distant cousins, acquaintances of his father, and a number of other people outside the family circle. As Otto grows up, we see in his diary an accurate reflection of his widening social world. At first Otto's social world consisted of the family as portrayed in the pastel drawing made in 1789. A household the size of the Van Ecks' could not exist without domestic staff. The servants attending to the family's needs were at once very close and extremely far away. Otto built up a circle of friends his own age early on, beginning at school in The Hague, when he occasionally invited classmates to come to De Ruit.

Keywords: De Ruit; Otto van Eck; social world



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