"A good book is the purest essence of a human soul.”
Victorian flower images from our personal archive reprinted on gifts for you: www.zazzle.com/collections/floral-119803436715725387
The Language and Sentiment of Flowers:
Victorian romance stories:
A Cycle of the Seasons: A Bicycle Romance in Four Meets (Fiction—1883)
A Floral Flirtation (Poem—1889)
A Header (?) (Poem—1883)
Aunt Nancy's Romance (Poem —1889)
A Modern Love Sung in Ancient Fashion (Poem—1884)
'Neath the Magnolias (Poem—1883) http://www.thisvictorianlife.com/neath-the-magnolias-poemmdash1883.html
On Wings of Love (Poem—1884)
A story on the BBC discussing the parallels between online dating and the lonely hearts classified advertisements of the Victorians and Edwardian eras: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06vkcf2
An excerpt from Delivery Delayed, Book V in the Tales of Chetzemoka:
"…"I meant to ask if there's anyone in the club who's not already busy on Valentine's?" Her face bore an immensely hopeful expression.
Most of the assembled company regarded her quizzically.
"You see," she continued. "I've always wanted enough friends to put together a real dance, and with the club —and Valentine's Day coming up—" She blushed.
Jacob, sensing his wife's embarrassment, wrapped her up in a reassuring hug. He told the group, "Addie's asking who wants to be involved in a dance in honor of St. Valentine's Day. Some of the other club members who aren't here tonight already said they would play for us, so there'll be two violins and a cello."
Ken clasped his hands behind his head, leaned back, and grinned at his sister. "The dance is in honor of something else besides Valentine's Day, I'm sure."
She gave him a sharp look. He shrugged and kept grinning.
Addie looked hopefully around the room. "Wouldn't it be marvelous?"
Reactions were mixed. Kitty said she would come for the music if she could avoid the more rigorous sets. Rachel seemed excited for an excuse to produce a ball gown, but her husband looked worried when she started discussing velvet prices.
"I'm really not much of a dancer…" David protested.
Lizzie looked shyly over at Isaac. "I'll come if you do," she told him.
He remembered how he had felt singing while she played. He wondered what it would be like to dance with her. "Naturally."
She smiled at him, and somehow that smile felt more like home than any port he had ever sailed into. They fell quiet together.
Ken called out, "Come on, folks! Can't you tell Addie's disappointed you're not showing more enthusiasm?"
"Ken!" She protested, but before she could go any further her brother clasped his hands around his knees and cocked his head at Felix. "What about you, Spark? I bet you can't wait to come to the dance with me!"
Felix set his notebook down. "I'm not sure I can make it. I've been swamped with work lately—"
Ken looked at his chum in irritation. "Come on, Spark! You know that Valentine's Day—"
"Ken!" Addie stopped him again.
Her brother folded his arms and gave her a put-upon look. "Why do you want to keep it such a big secret, anyways?"
Felix snapped his fingers, as though he'd suddenly remembered something. "Of course!" He mouthed. Then he turned a kind smile towards Addie. "I'm sorry, I forgot. I'd be delighted to come."
People around the room looked curiously at them.
Jacob smiled at his wife. "You should tell everyone, Addie. I don't see what harm it would do."
She sighed and looked embarrassed. "I'd just hoped everyone would like the idea of a Valentine's dance for its own sake," she said wistfully.
"I do, Addie," Lizzie assured her.
"Me, too," Rachel agreed. "Now, what's the big secret?"
Ken crossed the room and leaned an elbow on his sister's shoulder, grinning out at the room. "Valentine's Day is Addie's birthday!" He tweaked her nose.…" --Delivery Delayed, Book V in the Tales of Chetzemoka
It's obvious to everyone in the Chetzemoka cycling club that Lizzie and Isaac could make each other very happy —but does anyone really listen to their friends about affairs of the heart? A prim schoolmarm and a stoic steamship captain are hardly the people to discuss their sentiments, especially with each other. The smallest challenges seem like huge obstacles, even with everyone else trying their best to bring them together. When progress finally seems possible, a well-intentioned little girl steps in with the kind of help they'd be better off without. Will the situation be resolved in time, or will Isaac ship out for good?
February 14th: Library Lover's Day.
February 5, 2019: Chinese New Year.
From "Good Housekeeping," March 2, 1889, p. 214.
My first is in Flour but not in Rye,
My second is in Wet but not in Dry,
My third is in Bellow but not in Cry;
My fourth is in Rod but never in Whip,
My fifth is in Running but never in Skip,
My sixth is in Yawl but never in Ship;
My seventh is in Error but not in Miss
My eight in ecstasy not in Bliss,--
My whole, alas, for its cold, cold kiss!
PROVISIONS IN SEASON IN FEBRUARY
From Isabella Beeton's The Book of Household Management, 1893 edition.
Vegetables - Jerusalem artichokes, asparagus (forced), beetroot, broccoli, (purple and white), Brussels sprouts, cabbages, carrots, celery, chervil, cresses, cucumbers (forced), endive, kidney beans, lettuces, parsnips, potatoes, savoys, spinach, turnips - various herbs.
Fruit - Apples (golden and Dutch pippins), grapes, medlars, foreign and forced rhubarb, nuts, oranges, pears (Bon Chrétien), walnuts, dried fruits (foreign), as almonds and raisins, French and Spanish plums, prunes, figs, dates, crystallized preserves.
February fun fact: Conversation hearts are a Victorian invention! Sweethearts have been sharing these sweet treats since 1866.
In your heart of hearts, wouldn't you like to have a conversation around my books?
Author: Sarah A. Chrisman
(Known around Port Townsend as "The Victorian Lady"