Ruth Elizabeth Stiff
I love all things Earthy and Self-Help
History is one of my favourite subjects and I love to write short fiction
Research is so interesting for me too
The Mystery Box
Saturday afternoon was always “My” afternoon. The boys had gone out to footy and Sheba snuggled up on my lap purring, while I bing-watched Game of Thrones (yet again!). There was a glass of red wine and a box of my favourite chocolates on the little coffee table by the settee, where I was stretched out. After a very busy week at the office I needed to relax and unwind.
Ladies Fashion in the Victorian Era
The one thing that always impresses me personally, when looking at a Victorian-styled dress, is the sheer “workmanship” that can be so clearly seen. Every dress was cut, put together and sewn — by hand! These dresses were “High-Fashion” and very similar to our Haute Couture today. The skill of the embroiderers who attached their piece of work to the dress is comparable to the dresses the rich women wore in the Tudor Era. It is no wonder that these dresses were so expensive, when we think about the time involved to ‘create’ them and the sheer skill — it is no wonder that only the very rich could actually afford these dresses.
The truth about Victorian prisons was that to many (especially those of the poorer classes), life in prison was better than life in their own homes. Many ‘broke the law’ deliberately to go back into prison, for a roof over their heads and ‘decent food’. Even those in the Workhouses did this — because prison was better than the Workhouse!
Street Life in Victorian London
Six years after Charles Dickens died (1876), the streets of London were ‘recorded’ by Adolphe Smith, who was a journalist, and John Thomson, who was a photographer. The result shocked the middle classes when they read the book “Street Life of London”. Luckily for us today, this book is still available. To us this is history but when the book was first published in 1876 — it really was how people lived every day of their lives. The book was firstly put into articles which were full of facts and which the black and white photographs only added to. The book is regarded as “a key work in the history of documentary photography”.
Today's Lesson Is The Housekeeper
They belonged in another time period and were at the top of their careers. Most learnt their trade by ‘working up the ladder’. Very few of the upper-class, who lived in the magnificent “Houses” and who had an army of domestic servants, could manage without them = the Butler and the Housekeeper.
Today's Lesson Is The Tudor Kings And Queens
The years 1485 to 1603 are called “The Tudor Era”. This is because the House of Tudor ruled England England and Wales at this time. According to the historian John Guy (1988): “England was economically healthier, more expansive, and more optimistic under the Tudors” than at any time since the Roman Occupation.
The Fashion Of Elizabeth I
When she was a child, after her mother had been beheaded and the little Princess declared illegitimate, Lady Margaret Bryan (who was looking after Elizabeth) wrote to Thomas Cromwell: “Would the King deign to send his daughter new clothes? She had outgrown everything in the closets. She has neither gown nor kirtle nor petticoat nor linen for smock”. When Elizabeth I was Queen, she had over 2,000 gowns in her Royal Wardrobe. It is no wonder that “Fashion” became important to “Good Queen Bess”!
The Georgian Era had one of the most beautiful “fashions” of any Era, but it was also a very ‘impractical’ fashion. For the rich, upper-classes, the materials were lavish and the colours were ‘rich’, but women could only (just about) sit down in these exquisite dresses. This Century was known for its “Opulence”, with elaborate wigs, rich embroidery and (very) full skirts. The rich showed off their wealth through their clothes, and this applied to men as much as it did to women. The working-classes wore similar clothes, but they were not so rich in colour or material, and they owned fewer clothes, wearing more ‘practical’ clothes for working in.
The Original Gentleman Jack
The series “Gentleman Jack” is actually based on a true story. The drama is based in 1832 in West Yorkshire, England, (the cradle of the evolving Industrial Revolution). It is here that landowner Anne Lister is determined to save her ancestral home, Shibden Hall. Bucking against society’s expectations, “Gentleman Jack” refused to marry, dressed in black from head to toe and ‘charmed’ polite society. She was called “Gentleman” because she wore a top hat (as well as being in business), and”Jack” because — it was the Victorian nickname for lesbian.
Today's Lesson is Life in the Tudor Era
Good morning, today we will be looking at life in the Tudor Era. The Tudor Dynasty was in power from 1485 Henry VII) to 1603 (Elizabeth I) and it followed the Wars of the Roses. The National Religion was ‘changed’ and some of the literature is still read today, hundreds of years later. The diaries of those who could read and write have been handed down to us in today’s Century, so that we can learn about the daily lives of the Tudors.
Do You Believe In Dragons?
If, like me, you are obsessed with Game of Thrones, then dragons play a large part in your life. From the first time I saw Daenerys with her 3 dragon eggs (a wedding gift when she married Khal Drogo), to when we see the dragons fully grown, I have almost dreamt and ‘lived’ “Dragons”. Drogon is the black and red dragon and the one Deanerys rides. Rhaegal is green and bronze and he was named after her eldest brother. Viserion is cream and gold, and was named after her other brother, who met his death at the hands of Khal Drogo. The CGI in Game of Thrones just made these 3 dragons “come alive” and are a real spectacle to behold!