Category Archives: History

Courtship, Betrothal, Weddings, & Rings in the Regency

Courtship, Betrothal, Weddings, & Rings in the Regency

My upcoming novel, Darcy and Elizabeth: Hope of the Future, is the second volume of the “prequel duo” to my Darcy Saga sequel series to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Since the duo novels, including volume one Darcy and Elizabeth: A Season of Courtship, are set entirely during the betrothal period of Elizabeth Bennet and… Continue Reading

Happy US Independence Day 2017

Happy US Independence Day 2017

July 4, 1776 was the historic day when the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence. Every year, Americans rejoice and celebrate Independence Day with great fanfare. Amidst colorful parades, flag hoisting ceremonies, and barbecue parties, Americans remember the suffering their forefathers endured to win them precious freedom. “Since the signing of the Declaration of Independence 241 years… Continue Reading

A Wax Jack. What is that thing?

A Wax Jack. What is that thing?

Getting back to writing my novel also meant getting back into research. Both I love, so it has been a win, win! Today in the “What is that thing?” category, a new discovery for me was the device seen to the right. First introduced in the late 1600s and popularized in the 18th Century, the… Continue Reading

Chinoiserie ~ A Visual Art

Chinoiserie ~ A Visual Art

In visual art, the term Chinoiserie is from “chinois”, the French word for Chinese. The artistic style was a fanciful European interpretation of art and designs seen in countries all over East Asia, including China, Korea and Japan.   The beginnings arose in the 13th century when trade routes opened between Europe and China. Marco Polo (1254-1324) was the… Continue Reading

Exploring Derbyshire

Exploring Derbyshire

“Ten thousand a year and he owns half of Derbyshire!”  So said Charlotte Lucas to Elizabeth Bennet in the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice. To be fair, this statement is not in the original novel by Jane Austen, nor do the descriptions of Pemberley give any details of the estates acreage. No question the… Continue Reading

British Titles of Nobility

British Titles of Nobility

Titles of nobility are one of those areas Americans have particular trouble wrapping our minds around. It doesn’t help that the rules and application of British titles are extremely complex, and have changed in multiple ways over the centuries. In some respects, reading the various titles or hearing them uttered in a movie is akin to hearing a word or phrase in… Continue Reading

Christmas Carols: Silent Night

Christmas Carols: Silent Night

“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night” ~Luke 2:8 Unlike most Christmas carols, the origins of Silent Night are rooted in well-established facts AND steeped in dramatized legend. The Facts: Father Joseph Mohr (1792-1848), a young priest in the parish church at Oberndorf (a village on the… Continue Reading

Christmas Menu for 1660

Christmas Menu for 1660

The earliest published Christmas menu dates from 1660, the year of Charles II’s restoration to the throne. The Accomplisht Cook was written by Robert May, an English chef who trained in France and cooked for nobility throughout his life. This remarkable document includes a section titled “A bill of fare for Christmas Day and how to set… Continue Reading

Christmas Carols: O Holy Night

Christmas Carols: O Holy Night

According to history, in Roquemaure, a small town in southern France, at the end of the year 1843, the parish church organ had been renovated. To celebrate the event, the priest asked town wine merchant and poet Placide Cappeau to write a Christmas poem, even though the latter never showed an interest in religion. Cappeau obliged, titling… Continue Reading

Christmas Carols: What Child is This?

Christmas Carols: What Child is This?

What Child is This? was written by William Chatterton Dix (1837-1898), the manager of an insurance company in Glasgow. In 1865, when only 29 years of age, Dix was struck with a near fatal illness and consequently suffered months confined to his bed.  During this time, he read the Bible comprehensively and underwent a spiritual renewal that… Continue Reading