Victorian Tumblr Themes
19th century miscellany; cakes, cats and rants

Velvet hat lady of certain age and less certain maturity.

Particularly though not exclusively interested in the nineteenth century; also prone to ranting about my job hunt.

Masquerading as Susanna Lunden because someone once said I looked like her, which delighted me and bless her, she isn't around to object. We share a taste for extravagant hats and velvet.

1/30 Next



Today’s Classic: The Atmosferic Paintings of John Atkinson Grimshaw (1836-1893)


Fun thing!

Tagged by: @cupcakes-n-unicorns


OK here goes, five random facts:

1)  I eat embarrassingly huge quantities of Maoam Pinballs and other sour sweets, chocolate too, but that’s somehow less embarrassing.

2)  In my spare time I am a volunteer with a cat charity and an historic Cemetery.

3)  A little girl on the bus not so long ago pointed at me and asked her mother if I was a pirate :)

4)  I went to Waterstones today and bought Neil Gaiman’s Ocean at the End of the Lane and Antonia Fraser’s Perilous Question (on the 1832 Reform Bill) in their Buy One Get One Half Price offer.

5) I have knitted all the components of a stuffed mouse for my friend’s baby but I’ve no idea how to finish it so there are mouse legs, mouse arms, a mouse body, head and dress lying in random places around the house and I can’t remember quite where.

It took me rather a long while to think of the above 5 “random” facts so they aren’t actually random; they are what I hoped would be interesting without completely outing me to any random colleagues who might happen to be passing. 

Passing this on to 10 of my favorite bloggers: 
















The Adventures of Marx and Engels, #21

(I have been told yesterday that Swedish left-wing politician and economist Ali Esbati posted one of my Marx and Engels pictures on Twitter, which I think is pretty awesome)

Oh Karl….

I’m am Karl and Karl is me

When two mates arrived from Germany, Karl Marx joined them on a pub crawl that took in 17 pubs, a punch-up and drunken efforts to smash gas lights along London’s Oxford Street. The night ended when the three were chased by the police. This is an eye-witness account”


This Day in History: Luddites Break Machines at Sunnon-in-Ashuano (1811)

Between March 1811 and February 1812, the Luddites smashed over 1,000 machines in protest of the factory machinery which had robbed many artisans and laborers of their livelihood

Sutton in Ashfield?


My new favourite of the MAOAM family!

Urgghhhh, is anyone else going to admit downing a pack (and I mean a large pack) of these horrors in one go?  I am a 40 something woman who likes to think of herself as having rather sophisticated tastes but I am absolutely powerless over these sweets!  LOST the moment the pack is open.  And now I feel sick, sick, SICK!  Wouldn’t be so annoying if it hadn’t already happened about three times this week……..  what must they be doing to my poor insides?

Sir John Wedderburn of Blackness, executed in 1746 for his part in the ‘45 Jacobite rebellion.  The silhouette was made by his jailer’s daughter the night before Sir John’s execution by hanging, drawing and quartering on Kennington Common.

More about Sir John, his background, trial and execution and the extraordinary courage with which he faced it, can be found here.  I’m not sure whether the page is still being maintained.


Bonnie Prince Charlie by John Pettie (1898)

So this horrid little prat pops up on the Victorian art tag I’m tracking and I decide to google a many times great uncle, Sir John Wedderburn, who was hanged, drawn and quartered on Kennington Common for his part in the 1745 rebellion. 


Robert Wedderburn


"Robert Wedderburn was instrumental in achieving the freedom of the press in Britain in the 19th century. He, with many other working class radicals spent time in prison for publishing opinions, on religious and other matters, which challenged the ideas of the ruling class.

In 1812 Robert Wedderburn met Thomas Spence, the unofficial leader of those radical reformers who advocated revolution. Spence did not believe in a centralized body and instead encouraged the formation of small groups that could meet in local public houses. At the night the men walked the streets and chalked on the walls slogans such as “Spence’s Plan and Full Bellies” and “The Land is the People’s Farm”.


My new found relative - a fairly distant connection being the second cousin of my three times great-grandmother, but OMG what an interesting man, what a horrific, fascinating story he has. 


July 5th 1948: NHS launched

On this day in 1948, the National Health Service came into effect in the United Kingdom. Ideas for a nationalised health system had been around for decades before 1948, but it was not until then that they became a reality for British citizens. The Labour government of Clement Attlee, elected in 1945, were committed to the principles of the welfare state. They were greatly influenced by the 1942 Beveridge Report, which recommended social reform to tackle the five ‘Giant Evils’ of squalor, ignorance, want, idleness and disease. Thinkers around Britain thus came to see healthcare as a fundamental universal right, not a privilege held by a few. Working with these ideas, the government passed the National Health Service Act in 1946, which came into effect on July 5th 1948 and created the NHS in England and Wales (Scotland’s was created separately). The creation of the NHS led to universal health care in the United Kingdom, paid for through central taxation, ending the requirement that patients pay directly for their own healthcare. It radically restructured the British health care system, with the NHS taking control of the almost half a million hospital beds in England and Wales and placing almost all hospitals and staff under its jurisdiction. Despite ongoing debates over the efficiency, cost and structure of the NHS, it remains a central feature of the British welfare state. As seen with its celebration during the London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony, the NHS is a point of national pride for Britain. Indeed, according to a recent study, thanks to the NHS Britain has the best healthcare system out of eleven of the world’s wealthiest nations, with the United States in last place.

66 years ago today

Tagged as: love the nhs,


Map of London on Glove for the Great Exhibition of 1851, George Shove ca. 1851 Printed map on leather Created for the 1851 Great Exhibition (a.k.a. the First World’s Fair). The Victorian lady who owned this glove would have Hyde Park in the palm of her hand and the River Thames wrapped around her little finger.


Anyone know what that symbol on the top means? Mt. Hope Cemetery, #Rochester.

The letters IHS all intertwined together stand for Iesu Hominum Salvator, Jesus Saviour of Mankind.  Sometimes referred to as “the dollar sign” :)


Edvard Collins-Friend of Hans Christian Andersen whom Andersen nursed an unrequited passion for which ultimately inspired Andersen to pen The Little Mermaid with his wife Henrietta. Though he was a bit of a drip, I must admit Edvard is pretty handsome! I also love the buzzing sound my mouth makes when I say the “V” sound in his name!



Shakespearean insults, with cats.

7 more here.

I did not realize how very perfect cats were at delivering Shakespeare’s insults until now.


Princess Victoria of Saxe Coburg Saalfeld, Duchess of Kent. By George Dawe, 1818. This is Queen Victoria’s mother.


El Puente de la Torre.

EL puente de la torre se abrió oficialmente el 30 de junio de 1894 por el Príncipe de Gales, el que más sería tarde Eduardo VII. Se informó de la ceremonia de inauguración en el Times del 2 de julio.

“Under a cloudless sky and as part of a pageant which delighted tens of thousands of people, the new Tower-bridge, which deserves to be reckoned among the greatest engineering triumphs of the Victorian age, was declared open for traffic by land and water by the Prince of Wales with every circumstance of pomp and splendour.”

Podéis encontrar más información para el evento de hoy en: