Regency Culture and Society: Botanical Emblems

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Appearing in the January 1820 La Belle Assemblee, this collection of Botanical Emblems features symbols for truth, joy, and superstition.  A young lady may use this information to inform paintings, embroidery or poetry, invoking all the symbolic history of flora and fauna.  Other examples from La Belle Assemblee demonstrate that while the language of flowers wouldn’t be widespread until the Victorian era, it was nonetheless … Expand

Joan Smith (Jennie Gallant): Friends and Lovers

Wendy’s brother-in-law, Lord Menrod, was an arrogant, high-handed, albeit dashing tyrant who was no more fit to be the guardian of children than a dancing bear. So Wendy thought. The children in question were orphans, nephew and niece to both Wendy and Menrod. But Lord Menrod was wealthy and Wendy was not. Even so, she decided to fight for custody with every means at her … Expand

Regency Events: The London Beer Flood of 1814

Meux Brewery

In looking into breweries in London, I ran into the story of the Great London Beer Flood of 1814….and thought this was a great opportunity to start a new blog category: Regency Events! On October 17, 1814 in St. Giles at around 5:30 PM, a huge vat containing over 135,000 imperial gallons of beer (roughly 1.3 million pints) ruptured at the Meux and Company Brewery.  A wave … Expand

Emily Hendrickson: The Wicked Proposal

All she wants is someone to marry her–and then leave her alone. But when finding her “ideal” proves more difficult than she had envisioned, Lady Penelope enlists the aid of the Earl of Harford, the most sophisticated lord in London. Not realizing that he has designs of his own, she soon finds herself in the Earl’s capable arms. In a slight deviation from the ward … Expand

London Hot Spots: The Porter Brewery

The ambulator; or, The stranger’s companion in a tour round London (1807) Porter beer rose in popularity in the 1700s, and would begin to dwindle in popularity in the 1820s.  Much of its popularity was related to its favor with the working class of industrializing London.  According to a letter from Cesar de Saussure in 1726: “In this country nothing but beer is drunk, and … Expand

Regency Reader Questions: Double Barrelled Surnames

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Moniker/Name: tkh Source of Question: Research Your Question: I have read hundreds of pages on titles, forms of address, etc. I’ve perused the tomes, consulted my shelf of “how they lived” books. I was toying with the idea of writing a Regency novel (not my usual genre), and I personally do prefer to be historically accurate, but in all this research, I can’t find an … Expand

Regency Words: Cuckold

A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, 1796 Derived from the Cuckoo bird’s habit of laying its eggs in other birds’ nests and leaving the other bird to rear its offspring, the word cuckold appears to originate in a poem from 1250.  Chaucer also used it to good effect in the 14th Century prose “The Miller’s Tale” and Shakespeare frequently employed the term. Meant to … Expand

Regency Fashion: Parisian Concert Dress and Oriental Ball Dress

Appearing in January 1816’s La Belle Assemblee, these two fancy gowns display the influences on fashion from outside the UK. I adore the copy on the Parisian dress “A blue shawl…is thrown over this dress on quitting a theatre or crowded apartment” as well as the many fashion hints for the month. You can click on the text to be taken to the Google Books … Expand