Category Archives: Regency

The Centerpiece: Christmas Plum Pudding

The Centerpiece: Christmas Plum Pudding

In half a minute Mrs. Cratchit entered — flushed, but smiling proudly — with the pudding, like a speckled cannon-ball, so hard and firm, blazing in half of half-a-quartern of ignited brandy, and bedight with Christmas holly stuck into the top. – Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol All of us, I presume, are familiar with the image… Continue Reading

What IS a Sugar-plum?

What IS a Sugar-plum?

According to Clement Clark Moore, sugar-plums are so special that of all the possible delights a child might dream of, they top the list. The children were nestled all snug in their beds, While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads… So what exactly are these “sugar-plums” dancing in dreamland? At first glance the “sugar”… Continue Reading

Washington Irving ~ Christmas in the Regency ~ An Excerpt from “A Darcy Christmas”

Washington Irving ~ Christmas in the Regency ~ An Excerpt from “A Darcy Christmas”

Santa Claus, tinsel on trees, Frosty the Snowman, reindeer pulling a sleigh… These are a few of the current Christmas images we are familiar with in the US. What about yule logs, a boar’s head, community wassail bowls, a king of misrule, mince meat pies, and figgy pudding? Rarely are these traditions seen here in… Continue Reading

Here we come a-wassailing!

Here we come a-wassailing!

The general opinion is that wassailing is all about the apples and/or an ancient pagan ritual. Neither is true, but the origins are interesting nevertheless. Earliest traces are to a simple Anglo-Saxon/Old Norse toast — Waes Hael! — which translates to “be hale!” To this wish for good health, a fellow drinker would respond, Drinc Hael! As may… 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

Servants Focused on the Horses

Servants Focused on the Horses

Here it is, the final installment in my series on Georgian and Regency Era servants. The first six posts covered, in detail, the men and women who maintained the interior domains of an estate manor house. Now, with this post today, I will finish the blogs covering the duties of those men and women who… Continue Reading

Dogs Essential for a Regency Era Hunter

Dogs Essential for a Regency Era Hunter

On the week’s topic of gamekeepers, a fascinating extra tidbit is that these men were directly responsible for the creation of many breeds of dogs. Breeding and care of the dogs used to aid in the hunt and to guard the estate were a major portion of the gamekeepers’ duties. The following list of dog… Continue Reading

Gamekeepers: Wardens of the Estate’s Wildlife

Gamekeepers: Wardens of the Estate’s Wildlife

Continuing on with the series on Regency and Georgian Era servants who worked outside of the manor house, this week focuses on those men who managed the estate’s wildlife. Specifically, this meant those animals hunted for sport and food.   Gamekeepers   The earliest gamekeepers, as far back as Saxon times, were by Royal appointment… Continue Reading

Georgian Garden Adornments & Embellishments

Georgian Garden Adornments & Embellishments

A “Georgian Garden” is defined by the UK National Trust as one which dates from 1714 to 1830. On Tuesday I shared information on the men and women who designed and maintained these massive parks, and yesterday the blog post was a historical overview of landscape styles during this period of time. Today, I am… Continue Reading

What is a Georgian Era Garden?

What is a Georgian Era Garden?

  Elizabeth, as they drove along, watched for the first appearance of Pemberley Woods with some perturbation; and when at length they turned in at the lodge, her spirits were in a high flutter. The park was very large, and contained great variety of ground. They entered it in one of its lowest points, and… Continue Reading