Discussão18th-19th Century Britain

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Ago 2, 2006, 8:30 am

I see we now can form separate topics within this group! So I just made a general one on Non-Fiction of and about the period. I think there is a lot of source material available about the Georgian and Regency eras. Lord Chesterfield and his letters, anyone? I actually have a HUGE book of Chesterfield's letters, but I haven't read it yet- has anyone else? And what do they think of it?

Out 7, 2006, 3:31 pm

Haven't read Chesterfield, but Jane Austen's letters are wonderful. The sparkling wit readers know so well in her novels are also evident in her family letters. I found them very interesting. Too bad her sister Cassandra burned a lot of them.

I've heard that Fanny Burney's letters are also good, but keep forgetting to see for myself.

Out 11, 2006, 1:55 pm

I don't own Jane Austen's letters, unfortunately. I think letters would be such a fun way to research a period- they're so personal and you can see people's handwriting and such in them.

I'm reading Aristocrats by Stella Tillyard right now, which is about the four Lennox sisters (daughters of the second Duke of Richmond). So far, it's really interesting. And most of the information in that book, too, is from letters. Though a lot were burned also.

Dez 8, 2006, 10:54 am

Has anyone read Roy Porter's English Society in the 18th Century? I got it from, and it seems as though Porter was a prolific and popular author. He was also a doctor, so he has books on very interesting topics, such as the mental hospitals of the day.

I am a big fan of the Georgian period (as I guess most people on this list might be!), and I think it will be interesting reading as that is really when the aristocracy, I think, became more and more powerful. The 18th and 19th centuries were the heyday of the aristocrats, in my opinion, before the Industrial Revolution brought them down again.

Jul 4, 2007, 1:35 pm

Is anyone familiar with Ben Wilson's The Making of Victorian Values: Decency and Dissent in Britain: 1789-1837? From what little I have read about it, it traces the changes in British values from the what Wilson sees as the bawdy, honest, and somewhat crude Georgians to the uptight, hypocritical, and repressed Victorians. I am having trouble getting into it right now, despite the fact that the topic fascinates me.

Jul 5, 2007, 12:13 am

London Labour and the London Poor was writtten in the 1840's. It is a fascinating account of the poor of London - their jobs, their families, their housing.

Set 4, 2007, 4:00 pm

Sorry for the very large delay in responding, fannyprice. No, I've never heard of Ben Wilson's book, but it sounds right up my alley, too! Did you ever finish it? Thoughts?

Set 4, 2007, 10:40 pm

I got terribly off-track with it because I started it at the same time that I was trying to finish my master's thesis and deal with a family crisis. I plan to start it back up again and I will definitely let you all know what I think.

Set 4, 2007, 11:53 pm

I'm sorry about the personal things in your life- I hope you're doing ok. But yes, please let us know. I might have to pick that book up if you manage to get through it and enjoy it!

I can't tell from your post- do you prefer the Georgian period or the Victorian one? For some reason, I'm thinking Georgian, but I can't be sure :-)

Set 5, 2007, 10:32 pm

Thanks aarti, I didn't mean to sound like I was fishing for sympathy - things were just chaotic back when I started the book in question.

I don't yet have enough knowledge of either era to prefer one era to another - the characterization is Ben Wilson's, not necessarily mine.

Set 16, 2007, 10:20 am

I just got a bio that looks wonderful: England's Mistress by Kate Williams, about Lady Emma Hamilton. (The touchstone is incorrect.)

Set 17, 2007, 5:20 pm

That does sound good, Cariola. I think Lady Hamilton's life after Nelson was really quite tragic.

Set 17, 2007, 6:59 pm

#12 From the jacket blurb, her life BEFORE Hamilton was pretty interesting, too. I had no prior knowledge of her background.

Set 20, 2007, 9:50 am

Hello, I just joined the group. My interests lie in non-fiction and history, so hopefully the books on my list will elicit some discussion. I'll have to do some tagging to make them easier to find... look for "18th-19th Century Britain" as a tag in my catalog soon!

Set 21, 2007, 4:22 pm

I think that's a pretty easy tag to identify with, jztemple :-)

Mar 25, 2009, 4:29 pm

How about Daniel Poole's What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew? I love that book because it answers so many questions that come up when reading the novels of all of my favorites. It even clarifies somethings that I didn't even know I was mistaken about.

Abr 18, 2009, 10:58 pm

Can anyone recommend a good general biography of Napoleon, or a general history of the Napoleonic Wars? I've never studied the era in any depth, so I don't want anything too dry or textbook-y...I just love the fiction of the period (and fiction set in that period), so I'd like to know a little more of the history. Thanks!

Maio 5, 2009, 9:23 pm

> 16 - I have not read that book, though I own it. I love books like that, though, that give random information about the period. That's why I covet The Regency Companion, but it's very expensive...

> 17 I don't have a general history of Napoleon, though I own Napoleon: His Wives and Women. I haven't read it, though, so I can't say if I recommend it or not. I also have books about the French Revolution, though that is slightly earlier than the era you're talking about. Sorry to be of so little help :-)