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Posts Tagged ‘Victorian’

Lily Wight

     Updated 30/9/2015

     If you would like to see more images from the Victoriana album just click below to link or go to the Gallery tab at the top of the homepage (www.lilywight.com).

     You can friend/follow Lily Wight on Facebook or follow @Lily_Wight on Twitter xxx

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Lily Wight

Updated 03/06/2014

     Despite obvious extensive research and the Stoker seal of approval belated Dracula sequel Dracula The Un-Dead is a wasted opportunity which panders to modern tastes instead of keeping faith with the original vampire classic.

     Dacre Stoker and collaborator Ian Holt throw in everything from Elizabeth Bathory and Jack The Ripper to The Titanic creating a convoluted yarn which, although fast paced, struggles to find themes and focus.

     This sort of  Victorian Gothic Alternative History, or Literary Re-imagining, has been done far more successfully before by author Kim Newman whose Anno Dracula series is both effortless and ingenious in its use of similar settings and characters.

     The Un-Dead reads more like a sequel to Francis Ford Coppola’s Dracula movie and when Dracula intones to Mina’s son “I am your father!!!” you may just die…

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     The year’s best blog posts were selected by the readers of Lily Wight ~ The Arcade of Arts & Arcana.

Lily Wight

     Updated 30/9/2015

     TOP BLOG POST #3     We hope you all enjoyed Book Month at The Arcade of Arts and Arcana.  Just before we step into June and ponder a wealth of quirky Victoriana here is another enchanting glimpse into our album of Fairy images… 

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Lily Wight

     Updated 16/10/13

When bookshops are heaving with Twilight knock-offs it’s a travesty that this superb novel is out of print in the UK  and had to be sourced secondhand, from overseas.”

     At least that is what a certain reviewer (ahem) said the last time they considered Kim Newman’s superlative Anno Dracula – the first book in a truly diverse, enlightening and remarkable series.  Since then Newman’s twenty-two year old vampire novel has received a  well deserved new edition and relaunch to go with its brand new sequel, Johnny Alucard (2013).
     Part Dracula sequel, part alternative history, Anno Dracula is a tour-de-force of literary and historical research enlivened by Newman’s light touch and rich detail.   Fans of The Age of Empire will enjoy recognising and sourcing the characters and events which are effortlessly woven into an…

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     If it has been a while since you visited The Arcade of Arts & Arcana Gallery then here is a naughty peek at what you’ve been missing!

     The Victoriana album is just one of a series of permanent features which are regularly updated and available to view via the Gallery tab at the top of the homepage.

Click to visit the Gallery

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     Throughout the month Lily Wight will be renovating and upgrading the Gallery at award-winning blog site https://lilywight.com/

     Only the most strange and beautiful images win a permanent place in the featured collections which are regularly updated and enhanced with inspiring new finds.

     The collections are listed below and you can view them in full by simply clicking on the pictures.  The Gallery is always accessible via the tab at the top of the homepage.  Your comments and suggestions are always welcome.

     If you choose to share the images please include copyright information and a link to this website would be appreciated.

Automatons Album

Deviant Moon Album ©Patrick Valenza

Victoriana Album

Puppets & Marionettes Album

Macabre Album

Middle-earth Album

Faerie Lore & Fairy Tales Album

     Just click the pics to see the albums in full  🙂

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     There is FREE ENTRY at The Arcade Of Arts & Arcana Gallery all year round!

     Enter via the tab at the top of the homepage or click the pics to see more…

Faerie Lore & Fairy Tales

Puppets & Marionettes

Automatons

Victoriana

Grand Guignol

Middle-earth

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A wonderful post about the Celtic origins of Halloween with a bedtime story thrown in.  Sweet dreams, Blogsprites.

Chrissy Derbyshire

The wheel of the year turns to October. We notice the chill in the air, the earlier dark, rain and rust-red leaves. In the supermarket, oversized boxes of gummy ghosts and snakes take their place next to spiderweb garlands, vampire teeth and pointy hats. Pumpkins are selling out quick, soon to be grinning gargoyles on the doorstep and hearty soups on the stove. Hallowe’en is a much-maligned holiday in our modern times. It is a widely-held misconception that the holiday originated in America as an excuse to sell cards and costumes – that it is both a recent development in our folklore, and a cynical one. Neither of these is true. Hallowe’en originates from Celtic Britain. It stems from a culture that believed in magic and took it seriously, a culture for whom Faeryland and the Land of the Dead were interchangeable, and for whom, on certain auspicious days, the…

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     Visit The Arcade of Arts & Arcana Gallery for more automatons…

 

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We must not look at goblin men,

We must not buy their fruits:

Who knows upon what soil they fed

Their hungry thirsty roots?

“Come buy,” call the goblins

Hobbling down the glen.

“Oh,” cried Lizzie, “Laura, Laura,

You should not peep at goblin men.”

Christina Rossetti (1830-1894), Goblin Market.

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     We could not allow Puppet Month to go by at The Arcade of Arts & Arcana without wishing a very Happy Birthday to Mr. Punch who is celebrating 350 years of terrifying minors with his anger-management issues.

 

     Here are a few Punch facts to peruse if the pictures haven’t made you run screaming from this post ~

*  Punch & Judy performers are known as “Professors” and are sometimes assisted by a “Bottler” who corrals the audience, collects money and provides musical accompaniment. 

*  Mr. Punch is a manifestation of the mythological Trickster archetype.  His current anglicized form was adapted from the sixteenth century Neapolitan character Pulcinella from the Italian Commedia Dell’ Arte. 

*  Diarist Samuel Pepys recorded Punch’s début in London’s Covent Garden in 1662.

*  Punch regularly beats the other characters with a wooden baton known as a “slapstick”, a name now used as a collective term for a genre of physical comedy.

*  The Punch & Judy Show was originally intended for adults.  Contentious characters such as The Devil and Punch’s mistress Pretty Polly were sidelined in the late Victorian era as the performances were adapted for children.

*  The device which creates Punch’s familiar rasp is called a swazzle.

 

     Click the smiley for lots more information 🙂

 

 

Punch & Judy Pub, Norfolk, UK.

 

 

     Finally, a little treat from Stop-Motion Maestro Jan Svankmajer.  Don’t have nightmares, Blogsprites! 

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     Please don’t be concerned Blogsprites!  The title quote comes from the BBC’s superlative little series The Bleak Old Shop Of Stuff.

     The show was first broadcast on the radio and was bumped-up to television status with a Christmas Special in 2011.

     Heavily influenced by the searing wit and irreverent comedy of Blackadder The Bleak Old Shop is a must-see for Dickens’ fans or anyone with a taste for Victoriana and a sense of humour.

     Watch wherever you can!

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*Postage stamps, matches, refrigerators, lightbulbs, antiseptic, inflatable tyres, cars, buses, telephones, iron bridges, railways, cameras, bandstands and promenades are all Victorian inventions.

*After the death of Prince Albert (1861) Queen Victoria dressed in black and had fresh clothes and a wash-stand prepared for Albert every day.

*She also spoke of “the mad, wicked folly of women’s rights”.  No comment.

*Only two British monarchs have reached their Diamond Jubilee.  Victoria celebrated hers in 1897.

*Britain and China went to war… over Opium trafficking!

*A large part of the world still speaks English today because of Victoria’s empire.

*The Commonwealth is made up of countries which were once under British rule.

*The River Thames was so thick with sewage that paddle-steamers could hardly move.  After 30 years of work a new improved sewage system was completed in 1875.  It is still in use today.

*Victorian architecture favoured Medieval Gothic and Classical Roman or Greek styles.

*The first Victorian computer was called the “analytic engine”.

 

     All facts borrowed from The Victorians by Robert Hull.

     Click here for another post 🙂

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     Updated 17/06/2014

     Here at The Arcade of Arts & Arcana we are not ashamed to trawl kids’ books for fascinating factoids.  Here are few of our findings…

 

*Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital opened in 1852.  If you scroll down the sidebar you will find a link to Children With Cancer UK, this site’s nominated charity 🙂 

*Edward Jenner helped to wipe out smallpox in just 40 years when free vaccinations became available in 1840.

*The bell residing in the Houses of Parliament clock tower was cast in 1858 and named for building supervisor Sir Benjamin Hall.  Big Ben of course.

*Building ships from steel instead of heavy iron was a very good idea.

*Charles Kingsley’s The Water Babies (1863) influenced Parliament to pass the Chimney Sweeps Act.  The use of children as sweeps was finally stamped out in 1875.

*Today southeast Asia produces 90% of the world’s rubber.  Rubber seeds were originally sourced in South America, shipped to the UK for cultivation at Kew Gardens and re-distributed to Malaysia and Indonesia.

*The first bicycle, the Penny Farthing, was made in 1883 with solid tyres and no brakes.

*The first electric underground railway opened in London in 1890.  The system soon became known as “The Tube”.

*Many UK newspapers were founded in the Victorian era.  The Times rose to prominence by reporting on the blunders of The Crimean War.

*Many Scots families emigrated to Canada (settling Nova Scotia or New Scotland) due to their own, less well-known potato famine.

 

     All these facts are borrowed from The Victorian Age 1837-1914 by James Harrison.

     Click for another post 🙂

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Updated 09/06/2014

     All these amazing facts have been borrowed from the Snapping-Turtle Guide, Victorian Life by John Guy.

*The average life expectancy for a Victorian city-dweller was a measly 40 years!

*At the beginning of Victoria’s reign (1837) 20% of the population lived in towns.  By the end of her reign (1901) this figure had risen to 75%.

*Beer was less than a penny a pint causing problems with drunkenness… especially amongst children.

*This was probably because both boys and girls wore dresses until they reached about five years old.

*Thomas Edison didn’t just invent the phonograph (1877) he suggested talking-books for the blind.

*The Railway Age created affordable travel for all and inspired that Great British pursuit: a day-trip to the seaside!

*Victorian Artists and Poets reacted against The Industrial Age by incorporating romanticised Myths, Legends and The Natural World into their work.  (Click the Gallery tab for an album of Pre-Raphaelite paintings.)

*Thank whatever gods you believe in for the invention of chloroform!  Available for use on patients as an anaesthetic from 1847.

*According to royal protocol no one is allowed to propose to a queen so Victoria had to ask for Albert’s hand in marriage (and we all know where he kept the ring *warning* this link features adult content)!

*Women (and anything they earned or owned) were considered the property of their husbands or fathers until legal amendments beginning 1882.

 

     Click for another post you might enjoy 🙂

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     Count Dracula (alongside fellow Victorian gentleman, Sherlock Holmes) holds the dubious honour of being the Movie World’s hardest working (and most abused) literary character.

     Francis Ford Coppola’s 1992 adaptation is a gloriously bombastic mountain of soft-focus eroto-nonsense but a highly recommended guilty pleasure.

     Coppola claimed that his version would be the closest ever interpretation of Stoker’s classic novel but his attempts to include every character whilst frequently switching narrative perspective makes for a cluttered and unfocused movie.  Dracula is depicted in his numerous evolving guises but the inclusion of a psuedo-historical prologue forces a new reincarnation theme on the tale.

     Dracula was released just prior to Neil Jordan’s adaptation of  Interview With The Vampire and has too much in common with Anne Rice’s genre-changing interpretation of vampire archetypes as immortal dreamboats.  Coppola’s film oozes lush Freudian imagery; sinking suns, blood cells, eyes, nipples and fragrant blooms are everywhere.

     Oldman himself admitted to essaying Dracula as “a Fallen Angel” and the beloved actor deserves much credit for creating a tour-de-force (and cohesive) performance with a role that required him to play a medieval relic, a romantic Victorian Prince, a wolfman, a bat and just about every stage in between.

     His Eastern European accent is sublime or ridiculous but unforgettable either way.  Many have forgotten that he was nominated for an Oscar for this role.  As a Fantasy character he was never likely to win (even The Lord Of The Rings failed to gain plaudits for its cast) but his creation is every bit as unique as Depp’s Jack Sparrow.

     Rumour has it that Winona Ryder petitioned hard to have her then boyfriend Johnny Depp cast as Jonathan Harker.  Depp fans would no doubt love to have seen this but it is hard to imagine how he could have improved or altered the end result.  Some films are actually enhanced by unintentional comedy moments.  Keanu Reeves is one long comedy moment.   It is enough that Reeves is simply awful and memorable (with a grey streak that turns into a continuity nightmare and helpfully distracts from his lack of performance).

     Perhaps it is time to watch Coppola’s Dracula again.  The set and costume designs are lavish, Lucy’s beheading has genuine chills, Antony Hopkins goes all out to match Oldman’s Method mania and the orchestral score is magnificent.

     It’s guilty, yes…but pleasurable.

 

 

     Click for another post you might like 🙂

 

  

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     According to Blackadder the only thing Dr. Johnson’s Dictionary is good for is looking-up rude words (how true).  So, when  Victorian Era photographer and film-maker Eadweard Muybridge invented Bullet Time it was inevitable he would use his remarkable new-fangled equipment to capture images of naughty ladies (and a few game gentlemen too)!

     It’s old.  It’s black and white, so it’s Art 😉

 

*Warning* Adult Content.

 

     Okay, he did a few other amazing and groundbreaking things too…

 

     Victorian Era Bullet Time!

 

 

     Click for a post you may enjoy 🙂

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Updated 03/06/2014

     Despite obvious extensive research and the Stoker seal of approval belated Dracula sequel Dracula The Un-Dead is a wasted opportunity which panders to modern tastes instead of keeping faith with the original vampire classic.

     Dacre Stoker and collaborator Ian Holt throw in everything from Elizabeth Bathory and Jack The Ripper to The Titanic creating a convoluted yarn which, although fast paced, struggles to find themes and focus.

     This sort of  Victorian Gothic Alternative History, or Literary Re-imagining, has been done far more successfully before by author Kim Newman whose Anno Dracula series is both effortless and ingenious in its use of similar settings and characters.

     The Un-Dead reads more like a sequel to Francis Ford Coppola’s Dracula movie and when Dracula intones to Mina’s son “I am your father!!!” you may just die laughing.

     A fun read, but shouldn’t this have been a modern-day classic?

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     Updated 16/10/13

When bookshops are heaving with Twilight knock-offs it’s a travesty that this superb novel is out of print in the UK  and had to be sourced secondhand, from overseas.”

     At least that is what a certain reviewer (ahem) said the last time they considered Kim Newman’s superlative Anno Dracula – the first book in a truly diverse, enlightening and remarkable series.  Since then Newman’s twenty-two year old vampire novel has received a  well deserved new edition and relaunch to go with its brand new sequel, Johnny Alucard (2013).
     Part Dracula sequel, part alternative history, Anno Dracula is a tour-de-force of literary and historical research enlivened by Newman’s light touch and rich detail.   Fans of The Age of Empire will enjoy recognising and sourcing the characters and events which are effortlessly woven into an original investigation of The Ripper murders.  It’s a deceptively simple mystery that uses action and fun to distract the reader from how very smart it really is. 
     Mr. Newman may seem more than a little in love with his genius concept – and well he might – because you will fall in love with it too.
Click for –

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I love your blog! I would like to present you with The Versatile Blogger Award! Congratulations.
For information on what to do next just follow the link in the sidebar on my homepage x

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Amazing!

Country & Victorian Times

Although this is a bit different from what I usually post, I came upon this picture on the internet and just had to share. I have read and watched a lot on the subject of the undead and vampires, and even read about this cage over graves before. However, I have never actually seen a picture of one before and found it unique. So, I know what your asking, “so what does this have to do with this site and why is it posted?” Well, it has to do with the Victorian era and all of their superstitions and what we now know of as irrational fears.

The caged grave as seen above was used to prevent one of two things. 1: If you were to come back alive and become a walking undead then you wouldn’t be able to remove yourself from this cage and you could be dealt…

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