2007: 67. Inside the Victorian Home

“In 1909 H.G. Wells - not an author usually associated with domesticity - wrote a novel about Edward Pondervero, a purveyor of patent medicines who is the “terror of emininent historians.”

Inside the Victorian Home - Judith Flanders

       This is such a good book.  It tells the story of what domestic life was like in Victorian England, going room by room through the Victorian house.  Along the way it teaches us about Victorian society - from the way women lived their lives, to the way that everyone was constantly covered in dirt to the smallest thing - like how butter was sold.  It is extremely well written and scholarly, and fascinatingly interesting.  It is a great book.  I feel like I understand how different and difficult life was back then - particularly for women, and particularly, particularly for women servants.  Women worked like dogs to keep people clean and fed.  I don’t know what was more exhausting - the five day cycle to do one load of laundry, or the fact that the average woman wore forty pounds of clothes (including seven pounds of underwear).  Everyone should read this book and understand how lucky were are.  Plus, if you are a fan of Victorian novels, it helps explain a lot of things that otherwise might not make much sense.  A great book - I highly recommend it.


Recommended for: Anyone who wants to really understand the ways in which the past is a different country; people who are interested in life.


Date/Place Completed:  5/16/07; D.C.

Categories: Non-Fiction; Library Book

© Carrie Dunsmore 2017