Monday, January 28, 2013

Let's go Behind the Garden Gate

Come on in from the cold and visit with the historical team for a while.  Visit us  Behind the Garden Gate and learn what your favorite editor is hoping to see from you in 2013. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Great Historical Writers

I was sorting through my bookshelves yesterday and came upon some old historical romances.  Ones that I will never forget and find difficult to throw away.  My favorite historical romance author would probably be Kathleen Woodiwiss.  Kathleen was one of the first authors to enter the world of historical romance fiction of over 600 pages. She is considered by many to be the creator of this genre. Kathleen has a couple of short stories and 13 best selling novels now in circulation. With more than 36 million copies in print the legend continues on.

How is your favorite historical author? 

Friday, January 18, 2013

One of my favorite children's books.  A.A. Milne was born on this day in 1882.   Winnie the Pooh and Christopher Robin have been entertaining children for many years.  Thank you Mr. Milne for the great memories.


Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Forgotten Bronte

Anne Bronte

We all have heard of Wuthering Heights and the famous author Emily Bronte.  And who can forget Charlotte's Jane Eyre.  But who remembers Anne Bronte who wrote Agnes Grey and Tenant of Wildfell Hall?  On this day in 1820, Anne Bronte, the youngest of the six Bronte children was born in Yorkshire, England.
Anne was educated at home and worked as a governess during the time Emily and Charlotte were in Brussels studying school administration with the intent of opening a school.  However, that idea failed.  Which is good for us.  For they found another love--poetry.  By chance, Charlotte discovered poems her sister had written, and they self-published Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell in 1846.  Unfortunately, the book only sold two copies.  This did not deter the sisters.  Jane Eyre was published in 1847.  Wuthering Heights and Agnes Grey were printed later in that year.  The Tenant of Wildfell Hall was published in 1848.  This novel explored a young man who ruined his family because of alcoholism.  Sadly, Anne died the following year at the age of 29 from tuberculosis. 
Have any of you read Anne's work?  Or what do you think of Wuthering Heights or Jane Eyre?


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

This Day In History...

The Hunchback of Notre Dame is finished.

On this day in 1831, Victor Hugo finishes writing Notre Dame de Paris, also known as The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Distracted by other projects, Hugo had continually postponed his deadlines for delivering the book to his publishers, but once he sat down to write it, he completed the novel in only four months.

Hugo, the son of one of Napoleon's officers, decided while still a teenager to become a writer. Although he studied law, he also founded a literary review to which he and other emerging writers published their work. In 1822, Hugo married his childhood sweetheart, Adele Foucher, and published his first volume of poetry, which won him a pension from Louis XVIII.

In 1823, Hugo published his first novel, Han d'Islande. His 1827 play, Cromwell, embraced the tenets of Romanticism, which he laid out in the play's preface. The following year, despite a contract to begin work on a novel called Notre Dame de Paris, he set to work on two plays. The first, Marion de Lorme (1829), was censored for its candid portrayal of a courtesan. The second, Hernani, became the subject for a bitter and protracted debate between French Classicists and Romantics. In 1831, he finally finished Notre Dame de Paris. In addition to promoting a Romantic aesthetic that would tolerate the imperfect and the grotesque, the book also had a simpler agenda: to increase appreciation of old Gothic structures, which had become the object of vandalism and neglect.

~from This Day in History

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Divorce in the Early Colonial Days

Sometimes I just have too much time on my hand and look at the what happened in history on this day.  And behold, I found an interesting fact about divorce in the United States.  I also found the language and spelling interesting in the actual court decision written at the end of the excerpt. 

In the first record of a legal divorce in the American colonies, Anne Clarke of the Massachusetts Bay Colony is granted a divorce from her absent and adulterous husband, Denis Clarke, by the Quarter Court of Boston, Massachusetts. In a signed and sealed affidavit presented to John Winthrop Jr., the son of the colony's founder, Denis Clarke admitted to abandoning his wife, with whom he had two children, for another woman, with whom he had another two children. He also stated his refusal to return to his original wife, thus giving the Puritan court no option but to punish Clarke and grant a divorce to his wife, Anne. The Quarter Court's final decision read: "Anne Clarke, beeing deserted by Denis Clarke hir husband, and hee refusing to accompany with hir, she is graunted to bee divorced."

~ From "This Day in History" and The History Channel