Casual Racism… Anti-Semitism in the Regency – The Dark Days of Georgian Britain

In 1782, the German tourist, Karl Philipp Moritz toured England on foot and by stagecoach. He was a liberal Anglophile clergyman who loved the countryside and architecture of England but had mixed …

Source: Casual Racism… Anti-Semitism in the Regency – The Dark Days of Georgian Britain

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Death at the Needle: The Tragedy of Victorian Seamstress Mary Walkley – Mimi Matthews

The Seamstress by Josef Gisela, 1897

“Sir,—I am a dressmaker, living in a large West-end house of business. I work in a crowded room with twenty-eight others. This morning one of my companions was found dead in her bed, and we all of …

Source: Death at the Needle: The Tragedy of Victorian Seamstress Mary Walkley – Mimi Matthews

Overzealous Research Lands Cross-Dressing Victorian Writer in the Dock – Mimi Matthews

Just before midnight on June 25, 1891, a police detective encountered two women strolling arm-in-arm down Regent Street.  One of the women struck him as being rather odd in appearance.  He approach…

Source: Overzealous Research Lands Cross-Dressing Victorian Writer in the Dock – Mimi Matthews

Women’s rights and rape; a breakthrough in 1811 and a lesson for 2016? – About1816

Two hundred years ago, rape was a capital crime and dealt with very severely. However, convictions were rare because of the nature of the questions that the women could be asked and the likelihood,…

Source: Women’s rights and rape; a breakthrough in 1811 and a lesson for 2016? – About1816

The Trouble with Bustles: Victorian Fashion in the 19th Century News – Mimi Matthews

Source: The Trouble with Bustles: Victorian Fashion in the 19th Century News – Mimi Matthews

Extreme fashions have always incited a fair amount of criticism and ridicule. During the 1870s and 1880s, this criticism was primarily reserved for the bustle.  Bustles were routinely satirized in magazines like Punch and featured as the subject of countless humorous—and not so humorous—newspaper articles.  Below are just a few of the many interesting bustle stories from the 19th century news, from an exploding bustle during a reading by author Charles Dickens to a bulk of bustles cast into the sea.

CHARLES DICKENS AND THE EXPLODING BUSTLE

On an evening in September of 1888, famed Victorian author Charles Dickens was giving a reading at the First Congregational Church in the city of San Francisco.  Multiple British newspapers report the story of a fashionable…

Source: The Trouble with Bustles: Victorian Fashion in the 19th Century News – Mimi Matthews

Paris Police: Order in the street

Victorian Paris

Jean Béraud: Boulevard St. Denis Jean Béraud: Boulevard St. Denis

William Walton, author of Paris from the Earliest Period to the Present Day (published in 1899) writes:

Paris may be said to be a very well-policed city. The police regulations are intelligent, and cover all those points in which the safety, or comfort, or peace of mind of the majority of well-meaning citizens may be menaced or disturbed by the inconsiderate action of individuals, and yet these strict ordonnances, which might become harsh or tyrannical, are generally administered with discretion and, in the case, for example, of the peripatetic vendors of vegetables, the marchands and marchandes des quatre-saisons—with due consideration for the difficulties of the poor.

Great care is taken to assure the free circulation in the streets, with one very important exception: the householder must not deposit any garbage, or mud, or broken bottles on the sidewalk, he must wash his shop-windows…

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