La Moustache, 1815

La Moustache, 1815

Here we thought drawing a mustache on an unsuspecting friend was a camp prank alongside short-sheeting, or a college frat party stunt. Then there is my favorite example from Friends: Imagine my surprise to stumble across the image below on The History of Love. Apparently waiting until someone falls asleep and then drawing a fake moustache on them… Continue Reading

Chimney Sweeper Boys

Chimney Sweeper Boys

Way back to the 17th century the Master Sweepers of London would employ boys small enough to climb and scramble up chimney flues. The task for these climbing boys was to brush clean the inside of the flue with small hand-held brushes. They also used metal scrapers to remove the harder tar deposits left by… Continue Reading

Tipu Sultan’s Tiger

Tipu Sultan’s Tiger

For those who have read my novel The Passions of Dr. Darcy, you likely recall an encounter Dr. George Darcy and his mentor Dr. Kshitij Ullas had with Tipu Sultan, the infamous ruler of the Indian Kingdom of Mysore. My two characters are the product of imagination. Tipu Sultan, however, was real… and a very scary… Continue Reading

Floriography ~ A and B flowers

Floriography ~ A and B flowers

Floriography  —  the cryptological communication through flower use or arrangement  —  has been practiced for thousands of years in numerous cultures. In Europe, especially England, the craze truly bloomed (pun intended) in the Victorian Era, but was seeded and sprouted some one hundred years earlier. Lady Mary Wortley Montegu, wife of the British ambassador to… Continue Reading

Snuff: A Passionate Georgian Habit

Snuff: A Passionate Georgian Habit

Unlike dip or chew, those moist tobacco products that are ingested orally, or the dried leaves which are smoked, snuff is made from tobacco leaves that have been dried (sometimes via baking in an oven) and then ground into a fine powder. It is insufflated or “snuffed” into the nasal cavity, delivering a swift hit of… Continue Reading

Grecian Influence on Regency Fashion

Grecian Influence on Regency Fashion

In the aftermath of the French Revolution, European fashion followed the example established by breaking away from the thick brocade, heavy lace, immense powdered wigs, and stiff structures which were a hallmark of aristocratic garments. Flipping 180 degrees, fashionable dress embraced a “natural” style with ease and comfort the defining factor. The desire was for lighter fabrics… Continue Reading