Category Archives: Bibelots

Aspects of Small Ornamental Personal Possessions

Risqué Trinkets:   Erotic Snuff Boxes

Quite some time ago, I posted a pair of articles here on the topics of snuff and snuff boxes in the Regency. Snuff was the most common form of tobacco used during the Regency and was enjoyed by a great … Continue reading

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Corals:   Protection for Teething Babies

A child’s teething time has been a source of great angst for parents since prehistoric times, if not before, and remains so for most parents to this day. But for Regency parents, their child’s teething time was a period not … Continue reading

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The Mote Skimmer:   A Specialty Tea Accessory

Mote skimmers, also called mote spoons, were considered an essential part of any upscale English tea service for well over a century before the Regency began. Yet today, very few people are even aware of the existence of mote skimmers, … Continue reading

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Bottle Tickets & Wine Labels

Today many of us buy our wine in bottles with paper labels which provide the name and type of the wine and other information required by our respective governments. Such was not the case during the Regency, nor had it … Continue reading

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A Regency Bicentennial:   The Francillon Memo

Two hundred years ago, this coming Wednesday, a London jeweller signed and dated a memo which included a hand-colored drawing and a description he had just completed of a large blue diamond never before seen in England, certainly not publicly. … Continue reading

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The Jeweled Serpent

Though this serpent seldom has fangs, even when it does, there is no danger to anyone who handles it. This serpent may wrap itself around one of your digits, but will never squeeze any tighter than necessary to keep it … Continue reading

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When a Tiny Enamel Pansy Was a Hallmark of Excellence — Implements

Last week, I wrote about the beautiful and elegant work-boxes which were available at a few exclusive boutiques along the shopping arcade of the Palais Royal in Paris during the Regency. This week, the variety of needlework tools which could … Continue reading

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When a Tiny Enamel Pansy Was a Hallmark of Excellence — Work-Boxes

As an avid, life-long needle-worker, I became enamored of needlework tools soon after I picked up my first needle. As an historian, I have enjoyed researching the various needlework tools which our fore-mothers have employed across the centuries in their … Continue reading

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The Signet Ring:   Mark of a Gentleman

By the end of the nineteenth century, men of all classes had begun to wear signet rings. But during the Regency, as had been the case for many centuries, only gentlemen were entitled to wear signet rings. And each of … Continue reading

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A Lock on Love

Over the past few weeks I have seen several Tiffany advertisements posted around the Copley Square area, here in Boston. Among them was one which featured several padlocks in various shapes and sizes. They were of brushed or polished metals, … Continue reading

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Gimmel Ring:   The Puzzle of Love?

Though seldom used today, gimmel rings had been in use since the late Middle Ages as wedding or betrothal rings. And they continued to be used for that purpose right through the Regency. Long before the Regency began, a variation … Continue reading

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The Regency Telegraph of Love

Two hundred years ago, a brief article was published in La Belle Assemblée, entitled "Love’s Telegraph." Though it was actually published in the November "number" for that year, I thought it would be appropriate to discuss it in observation of … Continue reading

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Alphabet of Gems:  The Language of Stones During the Regency

First introduced in France as the eighteenth century slipped into the nineteenth, and despite the ongoing Napoleonic wars, this particular type of sentimental jewelery soon crossed the English Channel to become all the rage in England, just as the Prince … Continue reading

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Where are the Cairngorms?

Over the years, I have read many Regency novels set in Scotland, or which included Scottish characters. And yet, I have not found any mention of cairngorms in the pages of those novels, despite the fact that they are the … Continue reading

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Regency Diamonds — A Banked Fire

Most people today are familiar with modern diamonds which have been cut with great precision, giving them the mathematically exact facet size and number which allows them to reflect and refract light for optimum brilliance or fire. These precise cutting … Continue reading

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Did Wellington Save the Hope? — Part Two

Last week, I wrote about the origins of the rare blue diamond now known as the Hope, and traced its adventures through the end of the eighteenth century, at which point it dropped out of sight. The large deep blue … Continue reading

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Did Wellington Save the Hope? — Part One

He certainly did save the hope of England, even of Europe, that June day in Belgium, on the battlefield of Waterloo. But the Hope to which I refer is a precious blue diamond, which, thanks to the efforts of the … Continue reading

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