‘People and their life styles’ explores the routines of family and community life in rural settlements and urban centres, in private, and in public. It shows that the people of the ‘Middle Ages’ were not so different from us. Social status and gender were highly consequential. Some activities were associated with kinship, others with the search for protection. People sometimes joined others in their efforts—in a trade guild or a religious fraternity—but they also sought out patronage and guidance, from individuals who were stronger, richer, or more expert than themselves. The habit of association was strong in the European tradition.