Ep. 12: 941.081 – Victorian Customs and Entertainment

In this episode, Hailee is bewitched by the customs, entertainment, and daily lives of the Victorians.

The victorian period is named after for reign of Queen Victoria encompassing the span of history between 1837-1901. During this time, Brittain and the United States were experiencing the first Industrial Revolution. Also during this time, Alexander Graham Bell invents the telephone, Florence Nightingale revolutionizes the nursing field with her sanitary practices, Charles Dickens is the shit – the most popular author of the time, Charles Darwin writes the Origin of the species, Jack the Ripper is stalking the streets of London. And there is an incredibly high mortality rate which is why much of what the Victorians did for entertainment focuses on death. From disgustingly elaborate breakfasts to seances and anthropomorphic taxidermy and hair jewelry, the Victorians were certainly a strange bunch.

Recommended Media

  • The Boy in the Red Dress
  • Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon
  • Victorian Farm – BBC show
  • Floriography by Jessica Roux
  • How to Be a Victorian: A Dawn-to-Dusk Guide to Victorian Life by Ruth Goodman
  • Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood
  • The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry 
  • The Silent Companions by Lucy Parcell

If you’re interested in purchasing the books mentioned in this episode, visit our bookshop.org affiliate shop


Brief history of the Victorian Era

How People in the Victorian Era Spent Their Free Time – Weird History, YouTube

Archive of primary texts about all manner of Victorian topics

Victorian Farm – BBC show

Callisthenics for LadiesDeath Photography


Bell, B. (2016, June 04). Taken from life: The unsettling art of death photography. Retrieved April 24, 2021, from https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-36389581

Goodman, R. (2015). How to be a Victorian: A dawn-to-dusk guide to Victorian life. New York: Liveright Publishing Corporation, a division of W.W. Norton & Company.

History.com Editors. (2019, March 15). Victorian era timeline. Retrieved April 15, 2021, from https://www.history.com/topics/19th-century/victorian-era-timeline

Kendall, J. (2020, February 11). Remembering when Americans Picnicked in cemeteries. Retrieved April 24, 2021, from https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/picnic-in-cemeteries-america

Little, B. (2021, February 10). Trendy victorian-era jewelry was made from hair. Retrieved April 24, 2021, from https://www.nationalgeographic.com/culture/article/160211-victorian-hair-art-work-jewelry-death-history

Oneill, T. (2019). Ungovernable: The Victorian parent’s guide to raising flawless children. New York: Little, Brown and Company.Roux, J. (2020). Floriography: An illustrated guide to the Victorian language of flowers. Kansas City, MO: Andrews McMeel Publishing.

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