Monthly Archives: May 2013

Historical Miscellany #16 – A nasty case of the Hydrophobia (1794)

Taken from Lloyds Evening Post, 17 December 1794, issue 5821 — A most melancholy instance of that dreadful malady the Hydrophobia has recently occurred, the particulars are as follows: Mr Henry Waylin, apothecary of North Audley Street, so long ago as June last, was bit in the hand by a small dog that he attempted […]

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Orwell’s England Number Twenty Four – Stewed rhubarb

(To read about the project have a look at this page / Click on the image to see a detailed view) Subject: Stewed rhubarb Location: At home, Baron’s Court Orwell marked stewed rhubarb down for his second association in May, setting me an easier photograph than many of the others and also prompting me to […]

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Orwell’s England Number Twenty Three – The pleasure of not wearing underclothes

(To read about the project have a look at this page / Click on the image to see a detailed view) Subject: The pleasure of not wearing underclothes Location: Furnival Gardens, Hammersmith The few surviving photographs of George Orwell tell us without doubt that he was not a man of fashion. His choice of dress […]

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Historical Miscellany #15 – Catherine of Aragon’s last letter to Henry VIII (1535)

It’s December 1535. Henry VIII’s first wife lies abandoned and ailing at the medieval Kimbolton Castle in Cambridgeshire. Catherine of Aragon, daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella, has a month to live and she masters strength to write Henry a final letter. My most dear Lord, King and husband, The hour of my death now drawing […]

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Historical Miscellany #14 – A short piece on the swallow

I quoted from this article in one of my last Orwell’s England write ups, but I enjoyed it so much that I thought I’d write it up here in full. It’s a lively piece with a few excellent anecdotes. — Recreative Natural History, the swallow In our present paper on the swallow we must limit […]

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Historical Miscellany #13 – Parson Woodforde goes fishing (1781)

Reverend James Woodforde, or Parson Woodforde, is one of Britain’s great diarists. Not remarkably clever, well-connected, politically aware or emotionally sensitive, his diary is simply extraordinary for its ordinariness – for his ability to capture the unvarnished rhythms of daily life. He kept a daily journal for more than four decades, until his death on […]

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Orwell’s England Number Twenty Two: Seeing the first swallow, which is usually a sand-martin

(To read about the project have a look at this page / Click on the image to see a detailed view) Subject: Seeing the first swallow, which is usually a sand-martin Location: Abbots Bromley, Staffordshire When thinking of April, Orwell thought most of all of birds. With typical exactitude he pinpointed 14 April as the […]

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Orwell’s England Number Twenty One: The smell of the earth after a shower

(To read about the project have a look at this page / Click on the image to see a detailed view) Subject: The smell of the earth after a shower Location: Around Hertfordshire, various I decided to go beyond a simple photograph for this one. I had planned to hold a wide-angled lens right to […]

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Orwell’s England Number Twenty: The pleasure of hearing a cuckoo punctually on the fourteenth

(To read about the project have a look at this page / Click on the image to see a detailed view) Subject: The pleasure of hearing a cuckoo punctually on the fourteenth Location: Cassiobury Park, Watford I thought I’d try something different for this one. Birdsong is a difficult thing to convey in a photograph, […]

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