What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew: From Fox Hunting to Whist--the Facts of Daily Life in 19th-Century England
For every frustrated reader of the great nineteenth-century English novels of Austen, Trollope, Dickens, or the Brontës who has ever wondered whether a duke outranked an earl, when to yell "Tally Ho!" at a fox hunt, or how one landed in "debtor's prison," here is a "delightful reader's companion... show more
For every frustrated reader of the great nineteenth-century English novels of Austen, Trollope, Dickens, or the Brontës who has ever wondered whether a duke outranked an earl, when to yell "Tally Ho!" at a fox hunt, or how one landed in "debtor's prison," here is a "delightful reader's companion that lights up the literary dark" (The New York Times). This fascinating, lively guide clarifies the sometimes bizarre maze of rules, regulations, and customs that governed everyday life in Victorian England. Author Daniel Pool provides countless intriguing details (did you know that the "plums" in Christmas plum pudding were actually raisins?) on the Church of England, sex, Parliament, dinner parties, country house visiting, and a host of other aspects of nineteenth-century English life -- both "upstairs" and "downstairs." An illuminating glossary gives at a glance the meaning and significance of terms ranging from "ague" to "wainscoting," the specifics of the currency system, and a lively host of other details and curiosities of the day.
Publish date: April 21st 1994
Pages no: 416
Edition language: English
, European Literature
, British Literature
, Books About Books
, 19th Century
I read this book straight-through, but it'd be better if you just use it for reference if you have a specific question about the period. I felt like I got way too much information the way I read it.
I know quite a bit about 19th century life, through many years of reading books written then. But this book was full of stuff I didn't know, especially all the intricacies of death rituals, wills, politics, medical care, social classes, and sexual mores. I will definitely read Austen, Dickens, Troll...
Over 400 pages of definitions, facts, and glosses for the most alien aspects of 1800s England. And there are a lot of them! The nineteenth century saw the birth of much of what we think of as unremarkable necessities of civilization: a police force, basic schooling for all children, a national mai...