Sherlock Holmes Reveals The Killer of Prince Albert

The characters in Jane Eyre Gets Real are almost all of the Victorian era and “knew” Prince Albert, the Queen’s consort, well. He was born August 26, 1819. Considered a kind, intelligent man–as well as handsome, in his youth–his accomplishments including strengthening the constitutional monarchy, advancing social issues, and popularizing #Christmas. He died at the age of 42, plunging Queen Victoria, their children and their court into perpetual mourning. Officially the cause of Prince Albert’s death is recorded as “typhoid.” However, as #SherlockHolmes has been quick to note, Albert was ill for most of his life; pale, feverish and so … Continue reading Sherlock Holmes Reveals The Killer of Prince Albert

Alice in Wonderland’s Sister

Alice, stranded in contemporary New York City where she’s a character in Jane Eyre Gets Real, has been catching up on episodes of #TheCrown. The often-strained relationship between #QueenElizabeth and her younger sister Princess Margaret has made Alice remember her own sister. In Lewis Carroll’s masterpiece, Alice’s older sister is mentioned only twice, at the very beginning and the very end, and is never given a name. Right before Alice falls into a rabbit hole the sister is depicted reading a book without illustrations; at the tale’s conclusion Alice, returned from Wonderland, confides in her sister that she has had some … Continue reading Alice in Wonderland’s Sister

Snow Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

David Copperfield appears as a character in Jane Eyre Gets Real by Annabelle Troy. Some people say that Copperfield’s original creator, Charles Dickens, popularized the idea of a white Christmas–having written A Christmas Carol during a particularly stormy winter. Being then something of an expert on the subject, David gives us three variations of Victorian snow-related themes: 1. The #Snow Baby: a miniature figurine, in the shape of an infant or small child, engaged in some winter activity. The figure’s snowsuit is often covered in tiny pieces of crushed bisque which appear to glitter like snowflakes. The first snow babies were … Continue reading Snow Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

White Not Always Right for #Weddings

Yes, dear reader, Jane Eyre ultimately married Rochester, her one true love. But not before his first wife shredded Jane’s wedding veils to pieces…Perhaps the color, not the intent, was what didn’t appeal to Bertha Rochester! We think of white as being traditional for a bride; this, however, only became the case after Queen Victoria chose the color (or non-color) for her own nuptials. Even after she popularized the white wedding gown many less fortunate, more practical women chose to wed in wool or linen dresses that could be worn again and again; for the wedding ceremony they often threw … Continue reading White Not Always Right for #Weddings

Battenburg & Ballerinas

This distinctive type of lace, named Battenburg after Queen Victoria’s son-in-law, was developed in the late 1800s. It was distinctly modern in that it combined machine-made techniques with hand stitching. It quickly became very popular and was used for everything from parasols to kitchen curtains. For the next five days read The Grace of the Hunchback by Annabelle Troy, the story of an outwardly ethereal but inwardly fractured #ballerina–as unique as Battenburg lace–for free on Amazon. Continue reading Battenburg & Ballerinas

Very Victorian #RoyalWedding Problems

  #MeghanMarkle and #PrinceHarry may be encountering logistical problems shortly before the Windsor Castle extravaganza scheduled for tomorrow. However, Jane Eyre, a character in Annabelle Troy’s novel Jane Eyre Gets Real, can remember all the way back to 1840 and the day Queen Victoria wed Prince Albert. Here are some of the wedding hoops Victoria had to jump through: White Wedding Gowns Were Not Yet in Fashion but Victoria Insisted on Wearing White Silk, Trimmed with Lace & Orange Blossoms. Interestingly, White At That Time Symbolized Not Purity But Wealth. The Groom Was Prettier than the Bride. Victoria Mourned the Fact … Continue reading Very Victorian #RoyalWedding Problems

Mrs. Brown, With Mangoes

Jane Eyre, living now in NYC courtesy of the novel Jane Eyre Gets Real, was surprised recently when she saw a coming attraction for Victoria and Abdul. The movie, starring Judi Dench and Ali Fazal, has just opened in New York. It tells the true story of the aging queen and how she makes an Indian butler her Muslim adviser. Directed by Stephen Frears, of Philomena fame, the film has a stellar cast and lavish production values. Normally it would be right up Jane’s alley–except it all seems to be suspiciously like the 1997 movie Mrs. Brown.  Mrs. Brown also starred Judi Dench as … Continue reading Mrs. Brown, With Mangoes

Queen Victoria’s Tramp Stamp

  OK, Queen Victoria getting a tattoo may be a rumor started by Annabelle Troy…BUT, Alice in Wonderland, a character in Jane Eyre Gets Real, knows that tattooing was all the rage amongst grand ladies in the 1880s. The practice was first popularized in high society when that playboy trend setter the Prince of Wales got a cross tattoo in Jerusalem (Alice is not sure where on the body); his sons copied the cross design on their own flesh. Thus the rage for tattoos was born. After Czar Nicholas II. and Kaiser Wilhelm succumbed, aristocratic women started to get designs from the … Continue reading Queen Victoria’s Tramp Stamp

Who Needs A Flying Car?

Last week Google co-founder Larry Page debuted his flying car. The vehicle, which can be driven vertically over open water, is rather unimaginatively called The Flyer, and is expected to be on the market by the end of 2017. Operators will NOT need a pilot’s license though they may want to keep a lifejacket handy. As far as David Copperfield (the Dickens character featured in Annabelle Troy’s Jane Eyre Gets Real) is concerned, Larry Page can keep the d–d contraption! Copperfield fondly recalls the carriages of his youth. There’s the popular phaeton, the sports car of its day, a light open vehicle … Continue reading Who Needs A Flying Car?

Very Victorian Christmas Problems

It’s that time of year again. Happy Yule from Annabelle Troy and the characters of Jane Eyre Gets Real. Victoria and Albert got a Christmas tree…so now you have to get a Christmas tree Plum Pudding Too Dry Extremely Disturbing Greeting Cards   Um, kids, that’s not really Santa…   Angels Keep Dropping By While You’re Trying To Sleep Hard to Tell Holly & Ivy From Poison Ivy Continue reading Very Victorian Christmas Problems

Sherlock Holmes & The Mystery of Ponyhenge

On a grassy field in the town of Lincoln, Massachusetts rocking horses keep appearing. They started showing up on the field as early as 30 years ago, when kids used to run a lemonade stand there. The stand vanished but the horses stayed and their number has steadily grown, as if the wooden steeds are reproducing themselves. (Actually, not all the horses are wooden. There are also plastic models.) As of 9/2016, more than 30 hobby horses stand in Lincoln, arranged in a semi-circle. They have been given the name of “Ponyhenge.” At Christmas lights are draped around them. Sometimes … Continue reading Sherlock Holmes & The Mystery of Ponyhenge

Child’s Play

  Is childhood a real psychological state or simply a creation of society–and a sentimental one at that? We tend to take for granted that children think and feel differently than adults, as well as that they exist in a better, purer realm. But throughout society this has not been the case. In the medieval ages, and before, children were treated like incomplete, somewhat defective adults. Only in the 18th century did ideas about kids undergo a significant change. Largely responsible for this was philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau who equated children with nature and innocence; he believed education should be linked … Continue reading Child’s Play