Monday, July 30, 2007

Victorian Week - Final

All right, here's the final installment since we're entering a new week, LOL. This time, let's learn stuff about Christmas, famous buildings/structures, and Victorian fashion ;)

Note: Words in italic will link you to sites with more information, if you are interested.

Did you know...?

1) Decorated Christmas trees were a tradition brought to England by Queen Victoria's husband Prince Albert from his native Germany.

2) In German tradition, Christmas gifts are said to be brought by the "Christkind," the Christ child. In pageants, the Christkind appears in the tradisional outfit as seen from the image. In some regions, it is spelled "Christkindl," from which we get our "Kris Kringle."

3) Preparation of the Christmas pudding began with "Stir-up Sunday," with each family member making a wish as they stirred the mixture. The pudding was a porridge typically composed of fruit, raisins, sugar, spices, and breadcrumbs. It was shaped into a ball, wrapped in a cloth, and then steamed in the largest pot available. Finally the pudding was doused with liquor and set ablaze, then served topped with a holly sprig. The placing of charms in the Christmas pudding is an English custom with pagan origins. The charms have various meanings; the ring symbolized love, a boot foretold travel, and the little pig denoted the glutton at the table.

4) The custom of sending Christmas cards began in Victorian England, thanks to the inexpensive "Penny Post" postal services and the advent of the railroad.

5) "Big Ben" is not actually the name of the clock, nor the tower, but the name of the largest bell in the tower.

6) St. Paul's Cathedral was designed by Sir Christopher Wren in 1673. Amazingly, it survived the Blitz with little or no damage, partly through the devoted efforts of a crew of live-in firefighters.

7) The lower sections of Tower Bridge were raised to allow passage of ships, while the upper section was a walkway for pedestrian traffic.

8) Street market like New Cut and Covent Garden were where the lower class went to do their shopping.

9) Designed in 1811 by John Nash, Regent Street was a residential quarter for an increasing number of affluent Londoners.

10) Hyde Park Corner, the grand entrance to Hyde Park, is an impressive triple arch and colonnade over 100 feet long.

11) When Eleanor finally got over the anullment of her engagement to William, the first thing she asked was for something sweet (she hadn't eaten in days), and one of the dish brought to her was the "Canary Pudding." However, no worries, no canaries were harmed in the making of the pudding. This old English dessert is named for its predominantly yellow color from lemon rinds, one of the main ingredients.

12) A fashionable Victorian era waist size was 18 to 20 inches. The corset, with its stiffening steel or whalebone, was the means of achieving that. The invention of metal eyelets enabled corset to be tightened more without damaging the fabric, which led to excesses - people were known to swoon from shortness of breath. The practice of "tightlacing," in which severely tightened corsets were worn for extended periods of time, gradually fell out of favor towards the end of the Victorian period. (Phew..that must surely had been a relief LOL)

That's it! Hope you're more knowledgable now than before =þ

2 tots:

Soo Huey said...

Hey, this Emma - Victorian Romance anime really so nice a? Pics look interesting, and tho i haven't read all your trivia stuff from it, sounds interesting.

You have it on DVD? Lend me when I'm back in Penang! :D

How many episodes all together? Juz 12? So <6hrs can finish? we can all stay awake n watch 18th Aug night! xD

Catherine said...

Yeah, nice ler (nice story & drawings, interesting era) but I don't have the DVDs - I don't buy DVDs one LOL..

I streamed online actually =þ and as a matter of fact, this season just ended not long ago in Japan so its really really new, don't think DVDs out too (heard it'll only be out in 2009! O_o). First season should be out though but I watched it on Astro Animax (the channel where you get 24hours anime, everyday, non-stop..kekekek promote promote a bit)

12episodes per u gotta watch from season 1. Let me know if you really wanna watch (and can find time to watch LOL), I'll let you know the site ;)

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