September 6, 2012
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Inside the Victorian Home

by Judith Flanders

This thoroughly delightful study of the Victorian Home is interested neither in architecture or decoration, but rather in what people said and did in each kind of room. Flanders has an nice feel for the misunderstandings that so easily arise across space and time, such as the fact that morning calls were paid in the afternoon, and that “high tea” is not, as Americans tend to think, fancier than plain old “tea.” She deftly mines diaries, advertisements, fiction and biography to reconstruct details of behavior and belief in a book that is at once entertaining and comprehensive.