The article concerns a case study in the times of Enlightment. In that time the traditional class system has been questioned. The aim of the article was the description of a polemic between Bützow, a court clerk from Greifswald and the Swedish government in Stralsund in 1782 and its historical context. The dispute concerned the question, whether during the national mourning the clerks might put on the relatively cheap lacy cuffs at mourners’ sleeves. The main source for the analysis were files with the number 252 from the state archives in Greifswald. In the Swedish Pomerania, similar to many other places in Europe, and also on the empire’s territory the lacy cuffs were an attribute of nobility and of chosen court officials. The general governor of the Swedish Pomerania guaranteed in 1751 with an issued law the nobility the right to put them on as a symbol of mourning without specification, if the officials also be entitled to wear them. He created therefore an interpretation gap which Bützow tried to use for his aims. The fact that Bützow did not succeed and even had to apologize for his behaviour proves the stability of the traditional class system in the Swedish Pomerania at the end of the 18th century.
Go to article