My New Book on Madame Tussaud is Now Available!

Slang, Euphemisms, and Terms of the 1700 and 1800s – Letter G

By Geri Walton | November 8, 2013

The following are interesting slang, euphemisms, and terms for the letter G and are primarily taken from Francis Grose’s Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue published in 1811. GAB or GOB was a bridle. An exclamation of surprise said to be derived from the Italian word cazzo was GAD-SO or GADSO. GAGGERS were people who…

Georgian Headdresses of the 1770 and 1780s

By Geri Walton | November 7, 2013

Between 1770 and 1780 extreme hairstyles and tall headdress were in vogue in France, and these extraordinary super-structures made a distinct fashion statement that is still talked of today. This was because the French considered their hair and its accompanying headdress to be one of the most important articles in a woman’s toilet and they…

Slang, Euphemisms, and Terms of the 1700 and 1800s – Letters E and F

By Geri Walton | November 6, 2013

The following slang, euphemisms, and terms are for the letters E and F and are primarily taken from Francis Grose’s Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue published in 1811. A grave was also called an EARTH BATH. ENGLISH RIDING COATS or ENGLISH FROCK COATS were terms used by the French to refer to a condom.…

Dengue Fever

By Geri Walton | November 5, 2013

Dengue fever is a viral disease transmitted by several mosquito species and first recognized in the late 1770s. Although dengue fever has a red rash similar to measles and a much lower mortality rate than yellow fever, in the 1700s it was often mistaken for yellow fever. That was because there was no clear understanding…

Regency Era

By Geri Walton | November 4, 2013

The Regency era began after George III became unfit to rule and, it lasted from February 1811 to January 1820. During this period, George III’s son, the Prince of Wales, ruled as Prince Regent, until George III died in January of 1820, after which the Prince Regent, nicknamed by the people Prinny, took the throne…

Slang, Euphemisms, and Terms of the 1700 and 1800s – Letter D

By Geri Walton | November 2, 2013

The following slang, euphemisms, and terms are for the letter D and are primarily taken from Francis Grose’s Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue published in 1811. DAGGLETAIL meant dirty, bemired, or a slattern. DAIRY referred to the breasts of a woman who gave suckle. DAISY KICKERS were known as ostlers, and an ostler was…

Chemisettes

By Geri Walton | November 1, 2013

Chemisettes (from French for “little chemise”) were feminine attire similar to a dickey in that they were short sleeveless bodices. A chemisette filled in a woman’s front neckline and made it appear as if a blouse were being worn without adding bulk to an outfit. That was important on a hot summer’s day due to…

Halloween in the 1800s

By Geri Walton | October 31, 2013

The name “Halloween” evolved over time. It was shortened from All Hallows’ Even and All Hallows Day — the evening of All Hallows’ Day and another name for All Saints’ Day, respectively. Eventually, it was contracted to “Halloween.” Just as the name Halloween evolved, the holiday evolved too. It was initially influenced by Celtic-speaking countries…

Kensal Green Cemetery

By Geri Walton | October 30, 2013

From the beginning of the 1800s, public attention was drawn to the problems associated with cemeteries and their overcrowding in the midst of London. For instance, one article published in a nineteenth century magazine stated: “Public attention in London has long been directed to the dangers of burying-grounds in the midst of the city. These…

The Importance of Fans and Fan Language

By Geri Walton | October 29, 2013

Hand fans served many purposes in the eighteenth and nineteenth century. One purpose was they functioned as an indispensable and ornate fashion item, but beyond that fans also regulated air temperature, concealed flirtatious blushes, and protected a woman from insects and nature’s harsh elements. They were also the perfect accessory at a masquerade ball because…