The Secret History of Holywell Street: Home to Victorian London’s Dirty Book Trade | The Public Domain Review

Painting of a picturesque-looking Holywell Street from 1864 by Thomas Shepherd. Note the bulging bay windows, overhanging storeys and the olden sign of the golden crescent moon — Source.

Victorian sexuality is often considered synonymous with prudishness, conjuring images of covered up piano legs and dark ankle-length skirts. Historian Matthew Green uncovers a quite different scene in the sordid story of Holywell St, 19th-century London’s epicentre of erotica and smut.

Source: The Secret History of Holywell Street: Home to Victorian London’s Dirty Book Trade | The Public Domain Review