Archive for May, 2018

Sporting carriages were all the rage during the Regency. Both ladies and gentlemen drove curricles, gigs, and high-perched phaetons.
Driving clubs were quite popular and, of course, the domain of men. The first club was the Bensington Driving Club established in 1807.
The most famous of all driving clubs was the Four-Horse-Club that required their members to own a certain type of carriage and be able to drive a team (4 horses). The club was not only famous for the competence of its drivers, but for it’s famous “uniform.” In order to attend the meetings, which consisted of gathering a spot in London then driving to an inn to eat, every member had to wear “a drab coat that reaching to the ankles with three tiers of pockets and mother of pearl buttons as large as five shilling pieces. The waistcoat was blue with yellow stripes an inch wide, the breeches of plush with strings and rosettes to each knee. The hat should be 3 1/2 inches deep in the crown.”
The dress code was strictly observed, as was the type of carriage, a Vis landau, which seated two (making it more like a barouche) and was painted yellow. The members drove from the box, where a coachman would normally sit. The attempt to force members to all use bays failed.
Below is a drawing of a version of the Vis landau.
Vis Barouche
If the owner of such a vehicle wished to use it to drive his lady around, he’d have to have a coachman, and a chaperone. Why? Because the gentleman was not busy driving the team.
For more information about the four-horse-club, here are two links.
#RegencyTrivia #Historical #ReadaRegency

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Youll Never Forget Your first Earl comp

Join the You Never Forget Your First Earl blog tour and giveaway for a chance to win a signed copy!! https://goddessfishparty.blogspot.com/…/hosts-for-you-never… Ella Quinn, USA Today Bestselling Regency Romance Author

Within the Worthingtons’ extended family circle, laughter and romance rule, and a young lady never settles for less than true love . . .

With her three good friends all recently married, Elizabeth Turley is ready for some husband-hunting of her own. One gentleman in particular sparks her interest. Geoffrey, Earl of Harrington is tall, handsome, and dashing. He’s also just a bit too sure of himself. But Elizabeth has observed enough about the rules of attraction to pique the earl’s attention. Yet once she has it, the discovery of a troubling secret taints her future happiness . . .

Lord Harrington must marry or lose a prestigious position in Brussels, and pretty, well-connected Elizabeth fits his needs admirably. But could it be that he has underestimated his bride? She doesn’t bat an eye in the face of the danger they encounter overseas. She’s strong-willed, intelligent, and more enticing each day—yet also more indifferent to him. Now Geoffrey faces his greatest challenge: to woo and win his own wife, or risk losing her for good . . .

Amazon https://amzn.to/2qdBBe7

Apple http://apple.co/2gIXLjt

Barnes and Noble http://bit.ly/2yRdess

Books a Million http://bit.ly/2GJDfdP

Kobo http://bit.ly/2hf1PZd

Google Play http://bit.ly/2I7FpEN

#Regency #Historical #ReadaRegency

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We are back in the Regency, but not quite done with royalty. Today we’re going to discuss George Augustus Frederick, oldest son of King George III and his wife Charlotte, and the man who gave the Regency its name.  He was born on 12 August 1762 and died on 26 June 1830. Upon his birth he was given the titles Duke of Cornwall and Duke of Rothesay. These titles should be familiar to you as the current holder is Prince Charles. A few days later George was created Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester. On 5 February 1811, after his father was declared mad, he became the Prince Regent.

Prinny, as he was known to his detractors, lived a life of extreme excess in everything from food to women to gambling. When he was eighteen, he was given his own household and began his descent into profligacy. Even before he became prince regent Parliament was required to settle his debts. At one and twenty he entered into an illegal marriage to a Catholic commoner, Maria Fitzherbert, violating both the Act of Settlement 1701, that prohibited the spouse of a Catholic from succeeding to the throne, and the Royal Marriages Act 1772, that required he have the king’s consent to the marriage.  Maria in her late twenties and had been widowed twice. She considered the marriage legal but agreed to keep it a secret. The marriage did nothing to curtail George’s extravagant spending and his father refused to cover his debts. For a time he quite Carlton House and moved in with Maria. The short version of what happened next is, like things to, the secret marriage was getting out and Charles Fox, leader of the Whigs was concerned about the scandal the marriage might cause. Parliament was convinced to pay the prince’s debts.

Although, the prince had many mistresses, he always went back to Maria and was said to have had at least one child with her.

In 1794, the king, once again, became involved and refused to support his son unless George married. On 8 April 1795, he married Caroline of Brunswick (a cousin). It was apparently dislike at first sight. I recently read a report that Prinny had his mistress at the time Francis, Countess of Jersey (I use her first name only to distinguish her from Sally who was Francis’s daughter-in-law.) meet Caroline when she arrived in England instead of going himself. It is also said that all the jewels George gave Caroline on the event of their marriage he took back and gave to Francis who was one of Caroline’s ladies in waiting, and that she wore the jewels in Caroline’s presence. He attempted several times, unsuccessfully, to divorce her. In 1814, Caroline had apparently had enough and moved to Italy. Suffice it to say that the war between them had started and didn’t end until her death in 1821. He didn’t even write her about her daughter’s death in 1816.

George became George IV on 29 January 1820, and was even more determined to divorce Caroline. But she returned to England that year and sympathy for her caused her to be extremely popular, as opposed to George who was almost universally detested for his excesses.

On During his early years, the prince was considered by many to be an extremely handsome man. However, hard drinking and over eating eventually took its toll on his health.

He was succeeded by his brother William.

This is a very short account. If you’re interested in learning more about Prinny, Amazon has several listed. https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=King+George+IV


Lithograph of Prinny 1821

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Instead about talking about the Regency today, I’m going to discuss the new Duke and Duchess of Sussex and how to address them properly.

Let’s start with a little history. During the Regency (you knew I’d slip it in) the royal house of England and Great Britain was called the House of Hanover. The King of England was also the King of Hanover. However, when Victoria took the throne, she could not be the Queen of Hanover. The title went to her uncle. That said, she kept the name Hanover. When her son Albert became King of England, he changed the name to his father’s house, the House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. In 1917, due to anti-German sentiments in England (WWI) George V change the name to the House of Windsor. As it is today.

The Royal Surname. The royal surname (that they use only when they have to) was changed to Mountbatten-Windsor. This surname applies to male line descendent of the royal family who do not have another royal title or style. Princess Anne used the surname Mountbatten-Windsor when she signed the register after her marriage.

Here is the part that really seems to confuse people. The queen gave all her sons and her two oldest grandsons deriving from the male line (so not Princess Anne’s children) titles. In order to be called a “Princess) one must have been born a princess. Therefore, the daughters of all of Princess Anne’s brothers are entitled to the title princess. (To be fair, the queen did offer to make Anne’s kids princess and prince, but she turned her down.) None of the queen’s grandchildren use the name Mountbatten-Windsor. The reason for that all their fathers have other royal titles. Here’s the rundown:

The Prince of Wales

The Duke of York

The Earl of Wessex (Edward is another odd one. He turned down the HRH for his kids and liked that title better than whichever duke title was available)

Ever since their birth William and Harry (Henry for the purists among you) have used the last name Wales. Until they were made dukes, their titles were Prince William of Wales and Prince Harry of Wales. Their cousins are Princess Eugenie of York and Princess Beatrice of York.

The change. In order to avoid Kate being titled Princess William, the queen, just like she did with her two other sons, bestowed the royal title of The Duke of Cambridge on William. So he and Kate are properly known as their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Separately, they are HRH the Duke of Cambridge, or Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. If he needs a surname, he now uses Cambridge. Kate is HRH the Duchess of Cambridge. Just to make sure, I contacted Buckingham Palace and verified that Kate cannot be called either Princess William or Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge.

The same rules apply to Harry and Megan. They are Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Sussex. He is HRH The Duke of Sussex and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex. Megan is HRH The Duchess of Sussex. As with Kate, she cannot be called Princess Harry or Megan, Duchess of Sussex.

#RegencyTrivia #HistoricalRomance #ReadaRegency


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Hi everyone!

We’re just under two weeks until the release of YOU NEVER FORGET YOUR FIRST EARL (The Worthingtons Book 5) on May 29, so I thought I’d do a quick blog post to alert you to the fun things coming up as well as some great news I’ve had lately.

Youll Never Forget Your first Earl comp

First of all, I have to say a huge thanks to you, my readers. Because of the Bookbub sale on THE MARQUIS AND I this month, and your help in getting the word out, the book hit the USA Today bestseller list (again)! I am so grateful, thank you!

I hope you’re keeping up with the giveaways I’ve been having on my Ella Quinn author page.  We’re giving away five titles a week until the release, and spotlighting the books each day, so be sure to check in and enter those.

Speaking of giveaways, Kensington set up a really cute one for the release. Between 5/17 and 6/26 you can enter to win


1 Kate Spade bag

Random assortment of ARCs of historical romance novels

Photo May 16 3 06 46 PM

Enter here:   bit.ly/2KuooFy

I also wanted to let you know that on release day (5/29) I’ll be doing an author takeover on the Kensington Facebook page (it’s here: facebook.com/kensingtonpublishing/ )  I had a lot of fun preparing the posts for that day, and I hope you’ll join me. I’ll be sharing little-known facts from my life I hope you find interesting, so stop by and discover secrets from my misspent youth! {wink}

I hope to see you around the interwebs over the next couple weeks! I’m going to be really busy, but I think it should be fun.

And in case you haven’t had the chance to buy the book yet, let me help you with that! Here are some handy links:

Amazon  –  amzn.to/2qdBBe7

Barnes and Noble  –   bit.ly/2yRdess

Books a Million  –  bit.ly/2GJDfdP

Apple  –   apple.co/2gIXLjt

Kobo  –  bit.ly/2hf1PZd

As always, thanks so much for your wonderful support and for being great readers! I can’t wait for you to experience YOU NEVER FORGET YOUR FIRST EARL.


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Nursing woman

Drinking while pregnant. Another Regency author and I were discussing this at the convention this past weekend. My son was born in 1980 and her daughter was born about the mid-1980s. I had a secretary who became pregnant around 1998, and it was the first time the doctor mentioned it to her. That said, some doctors saw a link between strong drink and weak babies.

In 1725 physicians tried to convince the House of Commons to ban women from drinking strong spirits. That would have included brandy and gin but not wine. The law was never passed because there was no way to conclusively prove that drinking caused a problem. I think it’s also possible that the problem was the problem of the lower classes instead of the upper or middling classes. As we already know, ladies were highly discouraged from imbibing too much wine, strong spirits were considered gentlemen’s drinks. Unfortunately, many women at the bottom of the class system in London were not only drinking gin, but giving it to their babies.

There is some evidence that the Western Islands of Scotland did ban women from drinking ale during pregnancy and while nursing. On the other hand, many countries, including mainland Scotland, encouraged ale for milk production for nursing women. As I mention during my Regency Libations class, women of all walks of life were encouraged to drink porter (it’s much like stout) while pregnant and nursing.

It was not until 1899 that a British found a much higher rate of stillborn baby in alcoholic mothers.

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Birth control—Not long ago there was a thread asking how historical romance authors dealt with safe sex in their books. My answer was that I didn’t. In my opinion, one should respect and be true to the culture. And, for the most part, birth control during the Regency was not a concept that existed. Other than an unmarried, gently bred lady not falling pregnant, that is.

Women, in all walks of life, became pregnant on a regular basis. A gentleman was bound by honor to provide for his illegitimate children. And there was no wide spread condemnation of illegitimate children. If a man took a mistress or had relations with an unmarried woman, it was expected that they would probably become pregnant. That was just how it was. Some women were pregnant every year.

Condoms were for disease control, not birth control. It wasn’t until after well after WWI that the idea they could be used for preventing pregnancy took hold. During the Regency they were mostly made of sheep’s gut that has to be soaked for a long time before use. There is evidence to support the idea of pouch of silk tied on with a ribbon was used as well. The first rubber condom was not invented until later in the Victorian era. Ergo, there was no whipping out a condom before one engaged in amorous relations.

That’s not to say birth control didn’t exist, it did. Sponges soaked in vinegar with a string attached were used. Although, that was considered a whore’s trick I imagine some ladies and middling class women might have known about it. A tincture of Queen Ann’s Lace (daucus carota) has long been used for birth control, but one wasn’t going to get that knowledge from a physician. The knowledge would have been passed down through women in a family. Some of them would have known about the rhythm method, but again this would have been passed down through females. Doctors had been known to get it entirely backwards telling women that relations were save two weeks after her courses.

Nursing could, and does, stop ovulation for a time depending on how often and long a woman nursed.

family portrait

#RegencyTrivia #Historical #ReadaRegency

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Regency Trivia – Thieves Cant
Can was popular among the younger men of the ton. They picked it up a boxing matches, cock fights (none of my heroes attend them), low taverns, and gaming hells.
Cant is not rhyming cockney which is Victorian. Here are just a few examples of Cant.
All -a -gog – Anxious, eager
All-a-mort – Confounded
Mort – A queen or great lady can be used for any lady.
Fartcatcher – footman
Bantling – young child
A fabulous free resource for Cant and lower class slang is the 1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue. https://amzn.to/2K1Al5A
Another resource is Cant, A Gentlemen’s Guide. This is, unfortunately, not free, but here’s the link. https://amzn.to/2whpguU

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This is a fabulous post by Angelyn!

Angelyn's Blog

George, Lord Belfast, had a brother six years younger–Lord Spencer Stanley Chichester (1775-1819). Spencer Stanley was the last child born to the old Marquis and his beloved first wife, Anne. He was only four when his mother died.

Lord Spencer Stanley Chichester Lord Spencer Stanley Chichester

When George came of age in 1791, he had already declined an education at his father’s alma mater, Oxford, and left home for the gaming tables and the turf:

“I had the whole story of Lord Belfast and a sad one it is….the foolish young man had been bamboozled out of 40,000 pounds in the space of nine months by some villainous people..” — 1791 letter from Lady Newdigate

Sixteen year old Spencer Stanley remained at Fisherwick, companion to a perplexed father puttering about his shells and books in between trips to London for Parliament and the Season. One can easily speculate how his lordship, despairing over his absent elder son’s dissipation, should turn…

View original post 661 more words

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regency swearing

Swearing was vastly different during the Regency than it is today where pretty much anything goes. Gentlemen would have learned early on not to swear in the presence of ladies not matter how vexed they were. Ladies, by and large, were simply not exposed to swearing or vulgar language such as Cant. Do go thinking that servants would swear around them. That was a quick way to unemployment.

So, what words did gentlemen use when they swore? Here is a list of swear words and oaths I complied over the years”

Devil it, Bollocks, Bloody, Hell, Damn his eyes, Damme, (Egan uses Demmee), Devil a bit, Devil it, The devil’s in it, Hell and the Devil, Hell and damnation, Hell and the Devil confound it, How the devil . . ..

As opposed to words that could be used around a lady:

Perdition, By Jove’s beard, Zounds, Curse it, Balderdash, By Jove, Confound it, Dash it all, Egad, Fustian, Gammon, Hornswoggle, Hound’s teeth, Jove, Jupiter, Lucifer, ‘Pon my sou, Poppycock, Zeus.

Oaths appropriate for ladies were:

Dratted (man, boy, etc.), Fustian, Heaven forbid, Heaven forefend, Horse feathers, Humdudgeon, Merciful Heavens, Odious (man, creature, etc.), Piffle, Pooh, What a hobble (bumble-broth) we’re in.

You’ll notice that the word “bastard” is not listed. The first written usage appears to have been in 1830. Here are the examples from the OED:

1830   N. Scatcherd Hist. Morley 339   Bastard, a term of reproach for a mischievous or worthless boy.

1833   C. Lamb Let. 27 Apr. (1935) III. 367   We have had a sick child, who sleeping, or not sleeping, next me with a pasteboard partition between, killed my sleep. The little bastard is gone.

The first written usage of the word as it is used in modern day English is this:

1937   J. A. Lee Civilian into Soldier i. 29   ‘He’s a bastard.’ Guy used the term not for its dictionary meaning, but because among New Zealanders no term expressed greater contempt.

This makes sense. Being a bastard during the Regency was not a horrible thing. If one was fortunate to have been born to a king, he could become a duke.

So, it appears that the word as we use it today comes from New Zealand.

The word “bloody” was used frequently and was not considered offensive until sometime around 1750 when it began to be considered vulgar and profane. In 1755, Johnson calls it “very vulgar”, in 1888 the Oxford English Dictionary states “bloody now constantly in the mouths of the lowest classes, but by respectable people considered ‘a horrid word’, on par with obscene or profane language.”

It is unclear when the term “bloody hell” was first used, but during the Regency and beyond, it would only be used by the disreputable people.

Fuck is also not on the list. Although the word has been around forever, Shakespeare used it, it was not used in its current context until 1929.

Researching swear words take a lot of work as they were not normally used in written form. However, the OED online is a great source because they keep updating their dictionary.

Next – Insults

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