My Reading – September 2019

The Second Sleep by Robert HarrisLate on the afternoon of Tuesday the ninth of April in the Year of Our Risen Lord 1468, a solitary traveller was to be observed picking his way on horseback across the wild moorland of that ancient region of south-western England known since Saxon times as Wessex. Tidelands by Philippa … Continue reading My Reading – September 2019

7.31 from Flinders Street

air horn blasting as ribboned light streaks intodark suburban nightrhythmic click-clacksomnolent rockingnodding headsdrop into uneasy dozereader musing book abandonedunseeing eyes reflecting windows' life blaring ringtonequickly answeredtrain's near Coburg be there very soonspeed decreasingslowly slidingtoward the platform'sblazing lightsingle cyclistbike beside himoutstretched handreaching for the doortravellers jostlingonto the platformcrunching footfallsfade into the night _____________________________________________Image by Bianca Mentil … Continue reading 7.31 from Flinders Street

A Horrible Pestiferous Vice or Wholesome Exercise? – Dancing in Elizabethan England

Elizabeth I Dancing with Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester Philip Stubbs, the Puritan pamphleteer, in his Anatomie of Abuses (1582-3) had little good to say about dancing unless men and women were dancing separately to the glory of God, following the example of King David. He described it as 'an introduction to whordom, a preparatiue … Continue reading A Horrible Pestiferous Vice or Wholesome Exercise? – Dancing in Elizabethan England

The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper by Hallie Rubenhold

Between August and November 1888, five women were killed in Whitechapel, all believed to be the victim of a single killer. The identity and the behaviour of the killer has fascinated multitudes since to the point where the killer has achieved almost mythic status, the women he killed dismissed as prostitutes, mere footnotes to the … Continue reading The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper by Hallie Rubenhold

My Reading – July 2019

Human Croquet by Kate Atkinson Call me Isobel. (It's my name.) God's Traitors: Terror and Faith in Elizabethan England by Jessie ChildsFour months after the discovery of the Gunpowder Plot, Anne Vaux awoke in a prison cell. The Daughters of Ironbridge by Mollie WaltonFire and smoke, suffocating and infernal, reached up into the sky, staining … Continue reading My Reading – July 2019

‘Seldom doth the husband thrive without leave of his wife’ – The Sixteenth Century Manor Wife

A slightly more succinct version of this post was published on Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots on 8 July 2019. Sixteenth century conduct manuals advised a man seeking a wife to consider everything from the woman’s age, appearance, health, obedience and piety, to her love of children, singing voice and ability to be silent. … Continue reading ‘Seldom doth the husband thrive without leave of his wife’ – The Sixteenth Century Manor Wife