Tag Archives: Interior Decor

Popinjay Palaces:   Bird Cages in the Regency

Birds have been kept by humans since ancient times and, during the course of all those years, a wide array of structures have been constructed to house them. Some birds were kept for veneration or to participate in various rituals, … Continue reading

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Dumb-Waiters:   Keepers of Secrets

The dumb-waiters which will be discussed today are the free-standing furniture pieces which originated in England in the early eighteenth century. [Author’s Note:   The small box-like manual elevators used in many upscale homes are known in America as dumb-waiters, … Continue reading

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Billiards in the Regency

The Regency version of the game was played very differently than the way it is played today. It required only three balls, no rack and a mace was used as often as a cue. The only similarity between modern-day pool … Continue reading

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The English Regency Gallery at the Museum of Fine Arts

Recently, I had the opportunity to visit the Museum of Fine Arts here in Boston for the first time in more than a year. The MFA has been undergoing an ambitious remodeling and expansion project and this visit was my … Continue reading

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Pastille Burners:   Regency Glade®

Times past were not always fragrant, and our ancestors employed various methods to cover the plethora of noxious odors with which they often found themselves surrounded. Scent vinaigrettes, pomanders and perfumed handkerchiefs were effective enough while out and about in … Continue reading

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When the Family Savings Was the Teapot

The title of this article is not a mistake. I do not mean that the family savings was kept in the teapot. I really do mean that the family savings WAS the teapot itself, but only if that teapot was … Continue reading

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Regency Bicentennial:   Bagging Bonaparte’s Baggage

Last week was discussed the Battle of Vitoria, by which Wellington and his allied forces defeated the French army, officially under the command of Joseph Bonaparte, Napoleon’s elder brother. Though Joseph Bonaparte was not much of a military commander, he … Continue reading

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When Carpets Answered Ceilings

Though it is seldom, if ever, done today, there was a time when grand rooms in fine homes were designed so that the carpet on the floor mirrored the design painted or carved on the ceiling. This practice had begun … Continue reading

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Cube and Double Cube Rooms:   Harmonics and Agreeables

How many of us would notice the proportions of any room we might walk into today? Even if the room shouted out its dimensions as we crossed the threshold? If it did, would we care? Yet, many people in the … Continue reading

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Schomberg House — Part Three

Though the second part of the Schomberg House saga may have covered the most risqué and certainly the most glamorous part of its history, there are still a couple of curious tales to be told about that building before its … Continue reading

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Schomberg House — Part Two

Last week, I began the saga of Schomberg House, once the magnificent seventeenth-century London town home of the Duke of Schomberg, located on the south side of one of city’s most notable thoroughfares, Pall Mall. In the mid-eighteenth century, the … Continue reading

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Schomberg House — Part One

Earlier this month, I wrote a couple of articles about Mrs. Eleanor Coade and her artificial stone manufactory, located in the Lambeth area of London. Some of Mrs. Coade’s artificial stone products were used to decorate the facades of a … Continue reading

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Lithodipyra:   The Stone of Mrs. Coade

Though the products of Mrs. Coade’s manufactory could be made to look like stone, they were, in fact, not stone at all. In addition to being made to look like granite or limestone, they could also be made to look … Continue reading

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Green is for Babies

Not for the clothing of them, but for the begetting of them. Color was considered to hold great power by humans, reaching back into pre-historic times. Though they shifted and evolved over the centuries, the powers associated with various colors … Continue reading

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The "Secret" Ruff Drawer

It rather depends on where and into which century you were born as to whether or not this special drawer was likely to be a secret to you. Those born in England or America in the seventeenth century would be … Continue reading

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"Mrs. Phoebe Wright’s Celebrated Establishment"

And so it had been known for many years. Though, sadly, Mrs. Wright had passed away before the Prince of Wales became Regent, her "celebrated establishment" for young ladies was managed and maintained by one of her nieces, through most … Continue reading

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Cottage Orné:   Construction

Over the last two weeks, I have posted articles here on both the style and the philosophy behind the popularity of cottages orné during the Regency. It is time to conclude this series with a discussion of how they were … Continue reading

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