Today, I am pleased to announce the debut of my new blog, Kathryn Kane — Romance. This new blog will be devoted to all aspects of my favorite recreational activity, romance novels. Many of you may be wondering why I need another blog when I already have The Regency Redingote, which I have been publishing for more that six years. But the Redingote was created to focus primarily on historical snippets of the English Regency for the edification of Regency romance authors and their readers. I have come to the conclusion that I want to keep it that way.
For more details, please visit Kathryn Kane — Romance.
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Before the Bicycle: The Regency Hobby-Horse Prints, is the most recent book by Roger Street, a scholar of early forms of the bicycle. However, this important book will be of interest not only to those fascinated by that very Regency vehicle, the hobby-horse, or velocipede, but to both art historians and social historians of the era as well. Before I proceed with my review of this book, in the interests of full disclosure, I must explain that I was honored to be invited to write the Foreword for this book by "Captain" Street, and that he has most kindly sent me an autographed copy, which I am proud to have in my personal Regency research library.
And now, why I think Before the Bicycle is so special …
Last week, I wrote about a unique musical instrument which flourished during a period that almost exactly matched the years during which the Prince of Wales was Regent of England. This instrument, the harp-lute, was played solely by Regency ladies of the upper classes to demonstrate their musical accomplishments. Today, that instrument would be almost completely unknown and its dulcet and mellifluous tones would be lost to those of us living in this century, if not for the efforts of a very small group of musicians, the most dedicated of whom is Sarah Deere-Jones, of Cornwall, in Britain. Thanks to a little serendipity, her determination and diligent efforts, you can hear a real Regency-era harp-lute played by a skilled modern-day lady musician.
How you can bring the trembling of the harp-lute strings into your home, for your own personal pleasure …
Though few people today have ever even heard of a harp-lute, let alone seen one, these lovely musical instruments were extremely popular during the Regency. However, their popularity was mainly restricted to one select group of musicians, the amature musicians among the ladies of the gentry and aristocracy. Yet, when it came to playing in public, that is just outside the immediate family group, the restriction was even more severe, limiting such "public" performance to single ladies only. But, perhaps the reason for the restriction was that the harp-lute, in the hands of a talented lady musician, might well give her listeners the sense that they had been transported to Elysium itself. Would it not be the height of cruelty for a single gentleman to enjoy such angelic sound, only to know it was forever beyond his reach?
Chronicles of a cherished chordophone of the Regency …
The whole scandalous business began exactly two hundred years ago today, at about five o’clock in the afternoon. The Prince Regent had heard shocking rumors about his daughter, Princess Charlotte, and a certain rakish Prussian prince, which thoroughly infuriated him. He sent a note over to Warwick House, the home of Princess Charlotte, situated on the grounds of Carlton House, demanding that the Princess and her lady companion, Miss Cornelia Knight, attend him immediately. Princess Charlotte was suffering from a painfully sprained knee and could not walk any distance. She sent Miss Knight alone to wait upon the Regent.
In no little trepidation, Miss Knight set out to walk alone through the gardens of Carlton House …
My first Regency romance novel, Deflowering Daisy, will be released as an eBook publication this Thursday, 10 July 2014. Though I have published a few academic articles in the past, and regularly publish articles on Regency history here at the Redingote, this is my very first work of fiction and I am both very excited and quite nervous to be on the threshold of its debut.
More about Deflowering Daisy …
The largest panorama about which I have written in my series on panoramas is certainly the enormous London Panorama drawn by Thomas Horner, which encompassed 46,000 square feet of canvas and was displayed in the great Colosseum north of Regent’s Park. Today, however, I am going to tell you about the smallest of the panoramas, those made as toys, ostensibly for children, though it seems many adults enjoyed them just as much.
When panoramas shrank to fit the pocket (or reticule?) …