History of the American Bachelor: Colonial and Revolutionary America | The Art of Manliness -
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"In contrast to masters, dependents were young, single men who lacked private property and held no responsibilities within the community. These sorts of men held the same position in society as women, children, and servants. Their lack of mastery actually prevented them from being considered men. When writers of the 16th and 17th centuries referred to bachelors, they meant dependent men."
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