Fox Hunting

Emily and the dark angel Emily and the Dark Angel, out now, is the latest of my Classic Regencies to be reissued, and it takes place in Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire, a town called the “Queen of the Shires.”

WHAT ARE THE SHIRES?

The identification of the “Shires” has been debated, but we can say it means Leicestershire, tiny Rutland, and some nearby fringes of other counties which are mainly pasture land, and thus good for riding. But above all it means Leicestershire.

“It is a country not only of grass, but of wide pastures where there is room for a horse to extend himself between his fences, where the turf is old and sound, well drained, and seldom deep.” Foxhunting in the Shires,  by T F Dale, available to read here.Leic

Here's a photograph of typical Leicestershire countryside near Melton. 

THE QUEEN OF THE SHIRES.
At the heart of Leicestershire is Melton Mowbray, a town central for the three major hunts — the Quorn, Belvoir(pronounced beaver) and Cottesmore. A hunt basically is the pack of hounds, but it also refers to a geographical area.

I did a some research in the Melton library, which has a copy of  Melton Mowbray, queen of the shires, by Jack Brownlow,1980 by Sycamore Press, Wymondham, Leicestershire. Some of the information here comes from that book.

If you’ve read Regency romance for a while, you’ll be bound to have heard about Melton because it was the place to be for the top-of-the-trees young men of the period in the winter months. Travel to and from Melton was still arduous, especially in winter, so once there, the “Meltonians” as they were called, stayed. In fact, they lingered so long that society ladies would complain of the lack of eligible men at the beginning of the London season.

HUNTING BOXES  Belvoirc
They lived in inns, rented rooms, or ideally had a hunting box. In theory a hunting box was a small, informal place, and some were mere cottages, but most were grander and some were mansions. Belvoir Castle, seat of the Duke of Rutland, could be considered a hunting box at times as people did stay there and ride to the hunts, or into Melton for a convivial evening.

MELTONIANS

A Meltonian would arrive in the town with a string of horses, both hunters and hacks, but once there he would buy and sell, always striving to own the best horses available. That buying and selling plays a significant part in Emily and the Dark Angel. (And also in the Rogues books, Forbidden, and Dangerous Joy.)

This is not a lady’s world, and those ladies normally residing in Melton found the influx of men annoying, for they certainly didn’t have marriage on their minds. However, Emily Grantwich can’t hide away. Because her father is crippled and her brother missing presumed dead in the army, she’s managing the family estate near Melton. She needs money, and selling her father’s hunters is one way to get some. To sell them at a high price, however, they need to be ridden in a hunt – something she can’t do.
Sidesad
  A few women did hunt, but they were nearly all Cyprians, and it took great riding prowess unless they were willing to ride astride. The side-saddle of the period lacked the leaping horn added later, which gave a woman a more secure seat and made taking fences safer.This illustration is from this World of Jane Austen blog. Though drawn to show the folly of wearing a wig when riding, it also shows the flailing leg and lack of control.

Emily is a keen rider, but despite the role forced upon her, she’s a conventional woman who’d never dream of anything so scandalous as joining the hunt.

ROUGHRIDERS
What Emily wants to do is hire a rough rider. Yes, that’s an English term of the period, applied to men who rode horses in the hunt in order to show them off to best advantage so they’d bring a high price. The best one around was Dick Christian. He charged 15 shillings a ride for his regulars, and a pound a ride for occasional work. He was such a good rider, that on a blank day – ie when no fox was found – he was paid to ride ahead to provide a good run. This image shows a hunt, and Dick Christian's Last Fall. I'm not sure what that means, for he died at 83.

Emily was dreaming high when she wished for Christian to ride her horses. However, Piers Verderan, the Dark Angel, has encountered Emily Grantwich, (you can read that scene, with a rake, a lady, and a Violet Tart by clicking here) and finds himself wanting to help her. His moment comes as he’s riding into Melton.

A SNIPPET — VERDERAN ENCOUNTERS DICK CHRISTIAN

    “Good day to you, Christian. A handful?”
    “You could say that, sir,” the young man said, laughing, ably discouraging his horse from nipping at Verderan’s mount. “But we’re coming to terms.”
    “Busy this year?”
    “Busier than ever, sir. Seems everyone wants me to ride. Give up, Fly-By-Night!” he said to his mount as the horse tried to circle. With voice and vicelike legs he held the horse steady. “ You’d think he’d be ripe for a rest,” he commented wryly. “We’ve just done a five-mile run. He’ll be afine one for a long day once he realises who’s master.”
    “Whose is he?”
    “Just a coper’s, sir. I’m riding a prime piece of blood later in the season for Lord Stourbridge, though. Might be to your taste.”
    “I’m not looking for more horses at the moment.”
    “Pity, sir. The Grantwich lot’s coming up. The old man’s bedridden and the son’s dead in the war they say. Sorry business, but there’s a couple of fine horses there. Sir Henry had an eye for them. Had word asking if I’d ride for them. I’d like to oblige, being such a sad case, but I’m booked for most of the season.”
    “Word from Sir Henry?” asked Verderan, alert.
    “No, sir,from the daughter. She runs things these days.”
    It was a crazy impulse, but he didn’t fight it. “Do you have a couple of customers you don’t mind offending, Christian?”
    The young man looked at him shrewdly. “A couple maybe.”
    “A bonus of twenty guineas to take on the Grantwich horses. Just between the two of us.”
    The young man’s eyes widened. “Twenty! You’re on, sir, and it’s a pleasure.”
    Verderan saluted. “It’s my season for mad charities. I’ll send a draft to you. At the Blue Bell, as usual?”
    “Aye, sir. And if you’ve any more such charities in mind, I’m your man.”
    With a laugh, Verderan rode on.

MORE ABOUT MELTON

With so many rich and fashionable men in the town for months, it expanded rapidly. Like London, it had its clubs, There was a New Club in High Street, but the prime one, the one every man wanted to belong to, or even be invited to, was the Old Club in Burton Street.Oldclub

Then and Now is a lovely site showing old and current pictures, and it has some of Burton Street, showing the Old Club. I've taken this image from there, but do visit to see how beautifully they show the changes. Click here.

Can't you just see the prime Meltonians standing in the bow windows, surveying lesser mortals?

ANOTHER SNIPPET. VERDERAN INVITES THREE YOUNG MEN TO DINE AT THE OLD CLUB — MUCH TO HIS SURPRISE.

  “I too have inherited a place nearby,” Verderan said. “But for the moment I’m staying at the Old Club.”
    He looked at their awed faces and found himself saying, “If you promise not to blow your noses on the tablecloth you may dine with me there tonight.”
    Despite their attempt at sophistication, three faces flushed with colour and three pairs of eyes shone. “I say, that’s damned decent of you, Ver,” said Harry.
    “ Yes, it is,” said Verderan brusquely. “Don’t make me regret it.”
    The trio correctly took this as dismissal and made themselves scarce while Verderan wondered if it was a sign of senility, this tendency to be so disgustingly kind to people. More likely it was a lingering effect of the morning’s adventure. He was never coming within a mile of Poudre de Violettes again.

And what happens?
    That evening, Verderan found the meal at the Old Club drawing to a close without any obvious disaster having taken place. Well trained by Eton and Christ Church, his three guests had the precise blend of ease and deference which made them invisible to the lions they ate with. They listened with flattering absorption to the hunting tales of the old hands and made just sufficient contribution to the conversation to avoid being apostrophised as nodcocks.
    Verderan thought he could see them taking mental notes for their memoirs—or for tales for their grandchildren. “Did I ever tell you about the time I dined at the Old Club with Assheton-Smith . . .”
    Golden memories of the evening had been assured the trio when it was found that Lord Robert Manners had ridden over from Belvoir Castle and brought with him the great man himself, the legendary Thomas Assheton-Smith, who had succeeded Hugo Meynell as Master of the Quorn.

(Lord Robert Manners was the son of the Duke of Rutland. Hugo Meynell and Tom Assheton-Smith were great men in the development of fox hunting in the Shires, along with Obaldeston, a less admirable character, as we see.)

    Osbaldeston spoke up again. “So tell us, Verderan,” he drawled. “Why, pray, were you seen squiring an upper servant through town, covered with a fine dusting of flour?”
    Verderan discovered that he didn’t want anyone, least of all Osbaldeston, poking around Miss Grantwich’s reputation.
    “Good lord,” he replied nonchalantly. “How came you by that tale? I hardly thought any civilised person was about at that hour.”
    The sharp little face, so like his quarry the fox, tightened at the slight. “You obviously were, Verderan.”
    “But I have never claimed to be civilised, Osbaldeston,” replied Verderan, to a general chuckle. “And it was not flour but Poudre de Violettes.”
    Violet had said the “Squire” was after her favours. From the sudden colour in his cheeks, for once she had not been lying.
    Before Osbaldeston could respond, Chart Ashby exclaimed, “Violet Vane,” and then went red as he realized the knowledge his words implied.
    “Can you afford her?” asked Verderan with interest.
    “Hardly,” said Chart, recovering some of his carefully cultivated sangfroid. “I met her once and she asked for a gift of the stuff. I…I’d heard she was in town.”
    “Did you give her any?” Verderan asked.
Chart coloured again as he said, “ Yes.”
     “I wouldn’t expect too much return on the investment," Verderan said kindly. "She obviously only collects it to use as ammunition.”

(BTW, you can download a special Wench bookmark for this book here. Print it out on thick paper or card stock and enjoy.)

So in Emily and the Dark Angel I wove real people into my fictional inventions, perhaps more than in any other of my other Regencies. Melton and the Shires just such a rich ground, full of incidents and characters.

THE MELTONIAN DANDIES

There were probably more than I know about.
The Gambling Dandy. Major General the Honourable Henry Craven, 2nd son of Lord Craven.
The Red Dandy. Rufus Lloyd of County Tipperary, veteran of the Peninsular War. According to Queen of the Shires, he was crazy. (I gathered all this data before the web, and I've tried to find out more about these people. Nothing on this one.)
The Plebian Dandy. Henry Pierrepont, – son of Lord Manvers. Why plebian? No idea.
The Mosaic Dandy. John Mills of the Coldstream Guards. There’s a book, For King and Country: Letters and Diaries of John Mills, Coldstream Guards, 1811-14, and was also a  famous amateur cricketer. Perhaps his many skills led to the word "mosaic."

Awareness of these Dandies led me to call Verderan’s uninvited guest, Kevin Renfrew, the Daffodil Dandy, because he always dresses in yellow.

Another Meltonian was the famous Captain Barclay, the athlete and strong man who for a wager walked 1,000 miles, but he did it by walking one mile in each of 1,000 successive hours — a mile an hour, every hour, for forty-two days and nights. There's more about him here.

DID ORDINARY FOLK HUNT?
Despite the costs, hunting wasn’t an entirely aristocratic sport. The custom was that anyone with a horse could follow the hunt, and some odd characters did. There was a chimney sweep who hunted in his working clothes, complete with black top hat and brush, and a group of weavers regularly followed the hunt. Because the hunts needed the good will of the farmers, they were not expected to subscribe to a hunt and were encouraged to take part. A group of Leicestershire graziers followed the Quorn and were called the Bluecoats.
Ritabg
NOW FOR QUESTIONS AND PRIZES!
When Emily and the Dark Angel first came out, I heard no unease about fox hunting, and it won a RITA, (that's a RITA) so it didn't offend any judges, but this time around I’ve heard some murmurs. Does foxhunting bother you as a major element in a Regency? Are you bothered by angling, or men going out with guns to shoot birds or rabbits? 

I’ve never hunted, but why, I ask, should brothels and gaming hells be okay in period romance, and fox hunting not? Are we rational about what we object to about the past?

Regency England was another world, with different sensibilities from the 21st century. How far should authors adapt the world to suit modern tastes? We can simply ignore some things – I firmly ignore dentistry! – but some things are so central that pretending they’re not there is to create a fantasy version of the period.

But then, I did once name the Regency of Regency romance “Prinnyworld.”

Discuss!

I’ll pick three winners from among the most interesting comments. If you're one, you can have your pick of the reissued Classic Regencies as listed here.

Talley-ho! as they used to call when the hounds caught scent of a fox.

Jo

150 thoughts on “Fox Hunting”

  1. Hunting doesn’t bother me – it is something that happened at the time and if you start sanitising history you are on a slippery slope! I’m not an admirer of many things that happened in the past, but I can’t undo them. Indeed, it’s an area I’d like to know more about as it was clearly a very ‘manly’ world and that’s an endlessly fascinating question – what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?

    Reply
  2. Hunting doesn’t bother me – it is something that happened at the time and if you start sanitising history you are on a slippery slope! I’m not an admirer of many things that happened in the past, but I can’t undo them. Indeed, it’s an area I’d like to know more about as it was clearly a very ‘manly’ world and that’s an endlessly fascinating question – what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?

    Reply
  3. Hunting doesn’t bother me – it is something that happened at the time and if you start sanitising history you are on a slippery slope! I’m not an admirer of many things that happened in the past, but I can’t undo them. Indeed, it’s an area I’d like to know more about as it was clearly a very ‘manly’ world and that’s an endlessly fascinating question – what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?

    Reply
  4. Hunting doesn’t bother me – it is something that happened at the time and if you start sanitising history you are on a slippery slope! I’m not an admirer of many things that happened in the past, but I can’t undo them. Indeed, it’s an area I’d like to know more about as it was clearly a very ‘manly’ world and that’s an endlessly fascinating question – what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?

    Reply
  5. Hunting doesn’t bother me – it is something that happened at the time and if you start sanitising history you are on a slippery slope! I’m not an admirer of many things that happened in the past, but I can’t undo them. Indeed, it’s an area I’d like to know more about as it was clearly a very ‘manly’ world and that’s an endlessly fascinating question – what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?

    Reply
  6. I am SO glad this book is being reissued! It’s one of my all time favorite traditional Regencies, both for the wonderful and believable romance between a rake and conventional miss, and for the lovely portrait of an important aspect of Regency sporting life.
    I must say that it never occurred to me to protest fox hunting in a Regency, but then, I’ve used it myself. Nancy Mitford, the novelist and daughter of lord, wrote in one of her books how she and her friends unearthed the stops so foxes could escape before the hunt–but when in the hunt itself, were so caught up in the rush of it that the excitement pushed out all else.
    That’s one version of the hunt. When I lived in Oxford, I worked with a young woman, daughter of a yeoman farmer, who had hunted with the South Oxfordshire Hunt when she was younger. (It was mostly farmers, not an aristocratic hunt.) She said there was a lot of standing around on your horse waiting for somthing to happen. *g*

    Reply
  7. I am SO glad this book is being reissued! It’s one of my all time favorite traditional Regencies, both for the wonderful and believable romance between a rake and conventional miss, and for the lovely portrait of an important aspect of Regency sporting life.
    I must say that it never occurred to me to protest fox hunting in a Regency, but then, I’ve used it myself. Nancy Mitford, the novelist and daughter of lord, wrote in one of her books how she and her friends unearthed the stops so foxes could escape before the hunt–but when in the hunt itself, were so caught up in the rush of it that the excitement pushed out all else.
    That’s one version of the hunt. When I lived in Oxford, I worked with a young woman, daughter of a yeoman farmer, who had hunted with the South Oxfordshire Hunt when she was younger. (It was mostly farmers, not an aristocratic hunt.) She said there was a lot of standing around on your horse waiting for somthing to happen. *g*

    Reply
  8. I am SO glad this book is being reissued! It’s one of my all time favorite traditional Regencies, both for the wonderful and believable romance between a rake and conventional miss, and for the lovely portrait of an important aspect of Regency sporting life.
    I must say that it never occurred to me to protest fox hunting in a Regency, but then, I’ve used it myself. Nancy Mitford, the novelist and daughter of lord, wrote in one of her books how she and her friends unearthed the stops so foxes could escape before the hunt–but when in the hunt itself, were so caught up in the rush of it that the excitement pushed out all else.
    That’s one version of the hunt. When I lived in Oxford, I worked with a young woman, daughter of a yeoman farmer, who had hunted with the South Oxfordshire Hunt when she was younger. (It was mostly farmers, not an aristocratic hunt.) She said there was a lot of standing around on your horse waiting for somthing to happen. *g*

    Reply
  9. I am SO glad this book is being reissued! It’s one of my all time favorite traditional Regencies, both for the wonderful and believable romance between a rake and conventional miss, and for the lovely portrait of an important aspect of Regency sporting life.
    I must say that it never occurred to me to protest fox hunting in a Regency, but then, I’ve used it myself. Nancy Mitford, the novelist and daughter of lord, wrote in one of her books how she and her friends unearthed the stops so foxes could escape before the hunt–but when in the hunt itself, were so caught up in the rush of it that the excitement pushed out all else.
    That’s one version of the hunt. When I lived in Oxford, I worked with a young woman, daughter of a yeoman farmer, who had hunted with the South Oxfordshire Hunt when she was younger. (It was mostly farmers, not an aristocratic hunt.) She said there was a lot of standing around on your horse waiting for somthing to happen. *g*

    Reply
  10. I am SO glad this book is being reissued! It’s one of my all time favorite traditional Regencies, both for the wonderful and believable romance between a rake and conventional miss, and for the lovely portrait of an important aspect of Regency sporting life.
    I must say that it never occurred to me to protest fox hunting in a Regency, but then, I’ve used it myself. Nancy Mitford, the novelist and daughter of lord, wrote in one of her books how she and her friends unearthed the stops so foxes could escape before the hunt–but when in the hunt itself, were so caught up in the rush of it that the excitement pushed out all else.
    That’s one version of the hunt. When I lived in Oxford, I worked with a young woman, daughter of a yeoman farmer, who had hunted with the South Oxfordshire Hunt when she was younger. (It was mostly farmers, not an aristocratic hunt.) She said there was a lot of standing around on your horse waiting for somthing to happen. *g*

    Reply
  11. Emily said, “what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?”
    What an appropriate name for this blog, Emily!
    From Melton it seems they eat, drink, and get up to silly stuff plus quite a bit of bullying. Just like a boy’s school, actually. Or a girl’s school, to some extent.
    On at least two occasions men brought horses into the old club to jump the dining table.
    Not in the Regency, but later, one young lord and his friends took it into their doubtless drunken heads to slather “hunting pink” paint around the town, which is the origin of “painting the town red.”
    And sex, of course. Plenty of prostitutes in Melton in the hunting season. Like Violet Vane, the Violet Tart, and her little tartlet.
    Jo

    Reply
  12. Emily said, “what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?”
    What an appropriate name for this blog, Emily!
    From Melton it seems they eat, drink, and get up to silly stuff plus quite a bit of bullying. Just like a boy’s school, actually. Or a girl’s school, to some extent.
    On at least two occasions men brought horses into the old club to jump the dining table.
    Not in the Regency, but later, one young lord and his friends took it into their doubtless drunken heads to slather “hunting pink” paint around the town, which is the origin of “painting the town red.”
    And sex, of course. Plenty of prostitutes in Melton in the hunting season. Like Violet Vane, the Violet Tart, and her little tartlet.
    Jo

    Reply
  13. Emily said, “what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?”
    What an appropriate name for this blog, Emily!
    From Melton it seems they eat, drink, and get up to silly stuff plus quite a bit of bullying. Just like a boy’s school, actually. Or a girl’s school, to some extent.
    On at least two occasions men brought horses into the old club to jump the dining table.
    Not in the Regency, but later, one young lord and his friends took it into their doubtless drunken heads to slather “hunting pink” paint around the town, which is the origin of “painting the town red.”
    And sex, of course. Plenty of prostitutes in Melton in the hunting season. Like Violet Vane, the Violet Tart, and her little tartlet.
    Jo

    Reply
  14. Emily said, “what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?”
    What an appropriate name for this blog, Emily!
    From Melton it seems they eat, drink, and get up to silly stuff plus quite a bit of bullying. Just like a boy’s school, actually. Or a girl’s school, to some extent.
    On at least two occasions men brought horses into the old club to jump the dining table.
    Not in the Regency, but later, one young lord and his friends took it into their doubtless drunken heads to slather “hunting pink” paint around the town, which is the origin of “painting the town red.”
    And sex, of course. Plenty of prostitutes in Melton in the hunting season. Like Violet Vane, the Violet Tart, and her little tartlet.
    Jo

    Reply
  15. Emily said, “what DO men do when we’re not there to keep an eye on them?”
    What an appropriate name for this blog, Emily!
    From Melton it seems they eat, drink, and get up to silly stuff plus quite a bit of bullying. Just like a boy’s school, actually. Or a girl’s school, to some extent.
    On at least two occasions men brought horses into the old club to jump the dining table.
    Not in the Regency, but later, one young lord and his friends took it into their doubtless drunken heads to slather “hunting pink” paint around the town, which is the origin of “painting the town red.”
    And sex, of course. Plenty of prostitutes in Melton in the hunting season. Like Violet Vane, the Violet Tart, and her little tartlet.
    Jo

    Reply
  16. Hunting is definitely not my thing-either with guns or on horseback. But I can accept it as part of a historical novel. I imagine foxes are considered vermin in England, stealing chickens and whatnot. But in the U.S., at least along the East Coast, red foxes are rather unusual. I have only caught sight of one in the wild once or twice in my life. I don’t believe they are endangered, just very elusive. That, combined with the beauty of the animal, may be the reason for the squeamishness of your American readers.
    One of the places fox hunting on horseback still takes place is in Albemarle County, Virginia. It’s great horse country, with open rolling hills. That was where Thomas Jefferson lived, and he kept fox hounds, as did George Washington.

    Reply
  17. Hunting is definitely not my thing-either with guns or on horseback. But I can accept it as part of a historical novel. I imagine foxes are considered vermin in England, stealing chickens and whatnot. But in the U.S., at least along the East Coast, red foxes are rather unusual. I have only caught sight of one in the wild once or twice in my life. I don’t believe they are endangered, just very elusive. That, combined with the beauty of the animal, may be the reason for the squeamishness of your American readers.
    One of the places fox hunting on horseback still takes place is in Albemarle County, Virginia. It’s great horse country, with open rolling hills. That was where Thomas Jefferson lived, and he kept fox hounds, as did George Washington.

    Reply
  18. Hunting is definitely not my thing-either with guns or on horseback. But I can accept it as part of a historical novel. I imagine foxes are considered vermin in England, stealing chickens and whatnot. But in the U.S., at least along the East Coast, red foxes are rather unusual. I have only caught sight of one in the wild once or twice in my life. I don’t believe they are endangered, just very elusive. That, combined with the beauty of the animal, may be the reason for the squeamishness of your American readers.
    One of the places fox hunting on horseback still takes place is in Albemarle County, Virginia. It’s great horse country, with open rolling hills. That was where Thomas Jefferson lived, and he kept fox hounds, as did George Washington.

    Reply
  19. Hunting is definitely not my thing-either with guns or on horseback. But I can accept it as part of a historical novel. I imagine foxes are considered vermin in England, stealing chickens and whatnot. But in the U.S., at least along the East Coast, red foxes are rather unusual. I have only caught sight of one in the wild once or twice in my life. I don’t believe they are endangered, just very elusive. That, combined with the beauty of the animal, may be the reason for the squeamishness of your American readers.
    One of the places fox hunting on horseback still takes place is in Albemarle County, Virginia. It’s great horse country, with open rolling hills. That was where Thomas Jefferson lived, and he kept fox hounds, as did George Washington.

    Reply
  20. Hunting is definitely not my thing-either with guns or on horseback. But I can accept it as part of a historical novel. I imagine foxes are considered vermin in England, stealing chickens and whatnot. But in the U.S., at least along the East Coast, red foxes are rather unusual. I have only caught sight of one in the wild once or twice in my life. I don’t believe they are endangered, just very elusive. That, combined with the beauty of the animal, may be the reason for the squeamishness of your American readers.
    One of the places fox hunting on horseback still takes place is in Albemarle County, Virginia. It’s great horse country, with open rolling hills. That was where Thomas Jefferson lived, and he kept fox hounds, as did George Washington.

    Reply
  21. I was surprised at first that there were people who objected to fox hunting in Historicals, but then I remembered that I know someone who objects to poisoning rats. (I fear that I am so cruel as to do precisely that. There are creatures with whom I am willing to share my home, but rats are not among them.)
    In general I like my historicals to be fairly accurate, historically speaking. However, I don’t mind glossing over some of the grittier details. And every now and then I think about all the work the servants had to do to provide those hot baths the heroines are always enjoying.

    Reply
  22. I was surprised at first that there were people who objected to fox hunting in Historicals, but then I remembered that I know someone who objects to poisoning rats. (I fear that I am so cruel as to do precisely that. There are creatures with whom I am willing to share my home, but rats are not among them.)
    In general I like my historicals to be fairly accurate, historically speaking. However, I don’t mind glossing over some of the grittier details. And every now and then I think about all the work the servants had to do to provide those hot baths the heroines are always enjoying.

    Reply
  23. I was surprised at first that there were people who objected to fox hunting in Historicals, but then I remembered that I know someone who objects to poisoning rats. (I fear that I am so cruel as to do precisely that. There are creatures with whom I am willing to share my home, but rats are not among them.)
    In general I like my historicals to be fairly accurate, historically speaking. However, I don’t mind glossing over some of the grittier details. And every now and then I think about all the work the servants had to do to provide those hot baths the heroines are always enjoying.

    Reply
  24. I was surprised at first that there were people who objected to fox hunting in Historicals, but then I remembered that I know someone who objects to poisoning rats. (I fear that I am so cruel as to do precisely that. There are creatures with whom I am willing to share my home, but rats are not among them.)
    In general I like my historicals to be fairly accurate, historically speaking. However, I don’t mind glossing over some of the grittier details. And every now and then I think about all the work the servants had to do to provide those hot baths the heroines are always enjoying.

    Reply
  25. I was surprised at first that there were people who objected to fox hunting in Historicals, but then I remembered that I know someone who objects to poisoning rats. (I fear that I am so cruel as to do precisely that. There are creatures with whom I am willing to share my home, but rats are not among them.)
    In general I like my historicals to be fairly accurate, historically speaking. However, I don’t mind glossing over some of the grittier details. And every now and then I think about all the work the servants had to do to provide those hot baths the heroines are always enjoying.

    Reply
  26. Thanks for sharing all this great info! I’m glad to see EMILY AND THE DARK ANGEL is being reissued, since it’s one of my favorite books — I have the original version in a box somewhere, but I think it’ll be easier to just buy a new copy!

    Reply
  27. Thanks for sharing all this great info! I’m glad to see EMILY AND THE DARK ANGEL is being reissued, since it’s one of my favorite books — I have the original version in a box somewhere, but I think it’ll be easier to just buy a new copy!

    Reply
  28. Thanks for sharing all this great info! I’m glad to see EMILY AND THE DARK ANGEL is being reissued, since it’s one of my favorite books — I have the original version in a box somewhere, but I think it’ll be easier to just buy a new copy!

    Reply
  29. Thanks for sharing all this great info! I’m glad to see EMILY AND THE DARK ANGEL is being reissued, since it’s one of my favorite books — I have the original version in a box somewhere, but I think it’ll be easier to just buy a new copy!

    Reply
  30. Thanks for sharing all this great info! I’m glad to see EMILY AND THE DARK ANGEL is being reissued, since it’s one of my favorite books — I have the original version in a box somewhere, but I think it’ll be easier to just buy a new copy!

    Reply
  31. The world then is not what the world is now. While I like to read Regencies with some characters (like the hero and heroine) who are ahead of their time, most won’t be.
    I don’t like hunting–killing for sport is an oxymoron. It was part of the times, so I wouldn’t object. But I would object if the author described the kill and the blooding in graphic terms.
    As for brothels, a romance will have some sex, but a lot of that sex has become gratuitous. I’m pretty tired of heroes who hop in and out of women’s beds and we’re told it’s good. A promiscuous hero is another oxymoron. Jo, one of your heroes was still a virgin at 25 because he didn’t care for bed-hopping. A man who didn’t follow the crowd.
    A hero or heroine should be better than his/her peers. That’s why they’re heroes/heroines.

    Reply
  32. The world then is not what the world is now. While I like to read Regencies with some characters (like the hero and heroine) who are ahead of their time, most won’t be.
    I don’t like hunting–killing for sport is an oxymoron. It was part of the times, so I wouldn’t object. But I would object if the author described the kill and the blooding in graphic terms.
    As for brothels, a romance will have some sex, but a lot of that sex has become gratuitous. I’m pretty tired of heroes who hop in and out of women’s beds and we’re told it’s good. A promiscuous hero is another oxymoron. Jo, one of your heroes was still a virgin at 25 because he didn’t care for bed-hopping. A man who didn’t follow the crowd.
    A hero or heroine should be better than his/her peers. That’s why they’re heroes/heroines.

    Reply
  33. The world then is not what the world is now. While I like to read Regencies with some characters (like the hero and heroine) who are ahead of their time, most won’t be.
    I don’t like hunting–killing for sport is an oxymoron. It was part of the times, so I wouldn’t object. But I would object if the author described the kill and the blooding in graphic terms.
    As for brothels, a romance will have some sex, but a lot of that sex has become gratuitous. I’m pretty tired of heroes who hop in and out of women’s beds and we’re told it’s good. A promiscuous hero is another oxymoron. Jo, one of your heroes was still a virgin at 25 because he didn’t care for bed-hopping. A man who didn’t follow the crowd.
    A hero or heroine should be better than his/her peers. That’s why they’re heroes/heroines.

    Reply
  34. The world then is not what the world is now. While I like to read Regencies with some characters (like the hero and heroine) who are ahead of their time, most won’t be.
    I don’t like hunting–killing for sport is an oxymoron. It was part of the times, so I wouldn’t object. But I would object if the author described the kill and the blooding in graphic terms.
    As for brothels, a romance will have some sex, but a lot of that sex has become gratuitous. I’m pretty tired of heroes who hop in and out of women’s beds and we’re told it’s good. A promiscuous hero is another oxymoron. Jo, one of your heroes was still a virgin at 25 because he didn’t care for bed-hopping. A man who didn’t follow the crowd.
    A hero or heroine should be better than his/her peers. That’s why they’re heroes/heroines.

    Reply
  35. The world then is not what the world is now. While I like to read Regencies with some characters (like the hero and heroine) who are ahead of their time, most won’t be.
    I don’t like hunting–killing for sport is an oxymoron. It was part of the times, so I wouldn’t object. But I would object if the author described the kill and the blooding in graphic terms.
    As for brothels, a romance will have some sex, but a lot of that sex has become gratuitous. I’m pretty tired of heroes who hop in and out of women’s beds and we’re told it’s good. A promiscuous hero is another oxymoron. Jo, one of your heroes was still a virgin at 25 because he didn’t care for bed-hopping. A man who didn’t follow the crowd.
    A hero or heroine should be better than his/her peers. That’s why they’re heroes/heroines.

    Reply
  36. I feel smarter this morning for reading this post.:)
    I do think we tend to apply 21st century PC objections to many historical truths. Personally, I’m not a fan of foxhunting although I wouldn’t object to a storyline centered around it. (and therefore cannot wait to read this book)Chasing after and terrifying something you can’t eat does not really seem sporting. Plus I know for sure I would have fallen off the horse unless I was shackled in chains. I am now reminded of the hunt scene in the movie Auntie Mame, so you’ve put a smile on my face.

    Reply
  37. I feel smarter this morning for reading this post.:)
    I do think we tend to apply 21st century PC objections to many historical truths. Personally, I’m not a fan of foxhunting although I wouldn’t object to a storyline centered around it. (and therefore cannot wait to read this book)Chasing after and terrifying something you can’t eat does not really seem sporting. Plus I know for sure I would have fallen off the horse unless I was shackled in chains. I am now reminded of the hunt scene in the movie Auntie Mame, so you’ve put a smile on my face.

    Reply
  38. I feel smarter this morning for reading this post.:)
    I do think we tend to apply 21st century PC objections to many historical truths. Personally, I’m not a fan of foxhunting although I wouldn’t object to a storyline centered around it. (and therefore cannot wait to read this book)Chasing after and terrifying something you can’t eat does not really seem sporting. Plus I know for sure I would have fallen off the horse unless I was shackled in chains. I am now reminded of the hunt scene in the movie Auntie Mame, so you’ve put a smile on my face.

    Reply
  39. I feel smarter this morning for reading this post.:)
    I do think we tend to apply 21st century PC objections to many historical truths. Personally, I’m not a fan of foxhunting although I wouldn’t object to a storyline centered around it. (and therefore cannot wait to read this book)Chasing after and terrifying something you can’t eat does not really seem sporting. Plus I know for sure I would have fallen off the horse unless I was shackled in chains. I am now reminded of the hunt scene in the movie Auntie Mame, so you’ve put a smile on my face.

    Reply
  40. I feel smarter this morning for reading this post.:)
    I do think we tend to apply 21st century PC objections to many historical truths. Personally, I’m not a fan of foxhunting although I wouldn’t object to a storyline centered around it. (and therefore cannot wait to read this book)Chasing after and terrifying something you can’t eat does not really seem sporting. Plus I know for sure I would have fallen off the horse unless I was shackled in chains. I am now reminded of the hunt scene in the movie Auntie Mame, so you’ve put a smile on my face.

    Reply
  41. I imagine fox hunting started as a way to rid the countryside of vermin and then became a sport that was an end in itself. Can’t say I’m a fan, but neither can I say I object to it in an historical novel. Neither do I object to heroes or even heroines who fish or hunt because they ate what they caught and it was a fair contest and when hunters do the same today I also don’t mind. However, some hunting today does appal me. For example, I’ve read about hunters with night vision goggles and other high tech equipment who hunt polar bears from helicopters — doesn’t seem quite sporting to me.

    Reply
  42. I imagine fox hunting started as a way to rid the countryside of vermin and then became a sport that was an end in itself. Can’t say I’m a fan, but neither can I say I object to it in an historical novel. Neither do I object to heroes or even heroines who fish or hunt because they ate what they caught and it was a fair contest and when hunters do the same today I also don’t mind. However, some hunting today does appal me. For example, I’ve read about hunters with night vision goggles and other high tech equipment who hunt polar bears from helicopters — doesn’t seem quite sporting to me.

    Reply
  43. I imagine fox hunting started as a way to rid the countryside of vermin and then became a sport that was an end in itself. Can’t say I’m a fan, but neither can I say I object to it in an historical novel. Neither do I object to heroes or even heroines who fish or hunt because they ate what they caught and it was a fair contest and when hunters do the same today I also don’t mind. However, some hunting today does appal me. For example, I’ve read about hunters with night vision goggles and other high tech equipment who hunt polar bears from helicopters — doesn’t seem quite sporting to me.

    Reply
  44. I imagine fox hunting started as a way to rid the countryside of vermin and then became a sport that was an end in itself. Can’t say I’m a fan, but neither can I say I object to it in an historical novel. Neither do I object to heroes or even heroines who fish or hunt because they ate what they caught and it was a fair contest and when hunters do the same today I also don’t mind. However, some hunting today does appal me. For example, I’ve read about hunters with night vision goggles and other high tech equipment who hunt polar bears from helicopters — doesn’t seem quite sporting to me.

    Reply
  45. I imagine fox hunting started as a way to rid the countryside of vermin and then became a sport that was an end in itself. Can’t say I’m a fan, but neither can I say I object to it in an historical novel. Neither do I object to heroes or even heroines who fish or hunt because they ate what they caught and it was a fair contest and when hunters do the same today I also don’t mind. However, some hunting today does appal me. For example, I’ve read about hunters with night vision goggles and other high tech equipment who hunt polar bears from helicopters — doesn’t seem quite sporting to me.

    Reply
  46. I’m excited about your reissue and looking forward to reading it. . I would not want my historical watered down so its P.C. History is history and cannot be changed. Now I am going to admit I belong to a Hunt Club. The hunt is more than the thrill of the chase and like one commenter mentioned there is quite a lot of sitting around and waiting. I enjoy it for social rituals and camaraderie with my horses (nothing like hearing and feeling 100 horses galloping across the field to the braying of the hounds).

    Reply
  47. I’m excited about your reissue and looking forward to reading it. . I would not want my historical watered down so its P.C. History is history and cannot be changed. Now I am going to admit I belong to a Hunt Club. The hunt is more than the thrill of the chase and like one commenter mentioned there is quite a lot of sitting around and waiting. I enjoy it for social rituals and camaraderie with my horses (nothing like hearing and feeling 100 horses galloping across the field to the braying of the hounds).

    Reply
  48. I’m excited about your reissue and looking forward to reading it. . I would not want my historical watered down so its P.C. History is history and cannot be changed. Now I am going to admit I belong to a Hunt Club. The hunt is more than the thrill of the chase and like one commenter mentioned there is quite a lot of sitting around and waiting. I enjoy it for social rituals and camaraderie with my horses (nothing like hearing and feeling 100 horses galloping across the field to the braying of the hounds).

    Reply
  49. I’m excited about your reissue and looking forward to reading it. . I would not want my historical watered down so its P.C. History is history and cannot be changed. Now I am going to admit I belong to a Hunt Club. The hunt is more than the thrill of the chase and like one commenter mentioned there is quite a lot of sitting around and waiting. I enjoy it for social rituals and camaraderie with my horses (nothing like hearing and feeling 100 horses galloping across the field to the braying of the hounds).

    Reply
  50. I’m excited about your reissue and looking forward to reading it. . I would not want my historical watered down so its P.C. History is history and cannot be changed. Now I am going to admit I belong to a Hunt Club. The hunt is more than the thrill of the chase and like one commenter mentioned there is quite a lot of sitting around and waiting. I enjoy it for social rituals and camaraderie with my horses (nothing like hearing and feeling 100 horses galloping across the field to the braying of the hounds).

    Reply
  51. I think hunting should be included in historical stories because that’s what they did. That’s like leaving out ballroom dancing because it’s now considered a sin to dance. These are things they did, and it doesn’t matter whether we now feel sorry for the poor fox and don’t think it should be done anymore.
    I found your post very interesting and I enjoyed it very much.

    Reply
  52. I think hunting should be included in historical stories because that’s what they did. That’s like leaving out ballroom dancing because it’s now considered a sin to dance. These are things they did, and it doesn’t matter whether we now feel sorry for the poor fox and don’t think it should be done anymore.
    I found your post very interesting and I enjoyed it very much.

    Reply
  53. I think hunting should be included in historical stories because that’s what they did. That’s like leaving out ballroom dancing because it’s now considered a sin to dance. These are things they did, and it doesn’t matter whether we now feel sorry for the poor fox and don’t think it should be done anymore.
    I found your post very interesting and I enjoyed it very much.

    Reply
  54. I think hunting should be included in historical stories because that’s what they did. That’s like leaving out ballroom dancing because it’s now considered a sin to dance. These are things they did, and it doesn’t matter whether we now feel sorry for the poor fox and don’t think it should be done anymore.
    I found your post very interesting and I enjoyed it very much.

    Reply
  55. I think hunting should be included in historical stories because that’s what they did. That’s like leaving out ballroom dancing because it’s now considered a sin to dance. These are things they did, and it doesn’t matter whether we now feel sorry for the poor fox and don’t think it should be done anymore.
    I found your post very interesting and I enjoyed it very much.

    Reply
  56. Thanks for the comments. I haven’t been reading here earlier because we’ve been trying to get ready for the packers who are coming tomorrow. Yikes!
    Tomorrow I’ll be following the blog on my lap top.
    Another fact. A true Meltonian would have 10-25 hunters with him in Melton and the whole season would cost him about 1000 guineas.
    Jo

    Reply
  57. Thanks for the comments. I haven’t been reading here earlier because we’ve been trying to get ready for the packers who are coming tomorrow. Yikes!
    Tomorrow I’ll be following the blog on my lap top.
    Another fact. A true Meltonian would have 10-25 hunters with him in Melton and the whole season would cost him about 1000 guineas.
    Jo

    Reply
  58. Thanks for the comments. I haven’t been reading here earlier because we’ve been trying to get ready for the packers who are coming tomorrow. Yikes!
    Tomorrow I’ll be following the blog on my lap top.
    Another fact. A true Meltonian would have 10-25 hunters with him in Melton and the whole season would cost him about 1000 guineas.
    Jo

    Reply
  59. Thanks for the comments. I haven’t been reading here earlier because we’ve been trying to get ready for the packers who are coming tomorrow. Yikes!
    Tomorrow I’ll be following the blog on my lap top.
    Another fact. A true Meltonian would have 10-25 hunters with him in Melton and the whole season would cost him about 1000 guineas.
    Jo

    Reply
  60. Thanks for the comments. I haven’t been reading here earlier because we’ve been trying to get ready for the packers who are coming tomorrow. Yikes!
    Tomorrow I’ll be following the blog on my lap top.
    Another fact. A true Meltonian would have 10-25 hunters with him in Melton and the whole season would cost him about 1000 guineas.
    Jo

    Reply
  61. I too view the reissuing of Emily and the Dark Angel as cause for rejoicing. I’ve counted it among my favorite romances since I first read it in 1991. I love having shiny new copies to replace the often-read, tattered originals.
    As always when I visit you Wenches, I leave informed about some topic. I don’t like hunting either. My sympathies are always with the fox when I read descriptions of the chase. But then, I also worry that my deer-hunting family members and friends are off to kill Bambi’s mother on these fall and winter mornings. However, I’m not going to cut Regency settings from my reading or Southern hunters from my life anymore than I’m going to stop collecting Leslie Ford mysteries because the characters are racist or stop reading every DWM author who is sexist.
    If a writer catered to 21st-century PC values, the result would probably be sanitized blandness, and she/he would be accused of historical inaccuracy. Such concerns could also be paralyzing to a writer’s imagination. I think it was Cleanth Brooks who said, “History is a fiction often retold.” Unless one reads only primary sources, there will always be filters in place. My preference for historical romance is enough filters not to pull me out of the story but not so many that I am unable to suspend disbelief.

    Reply
  62. I too view the reissuing of Emily and the Dark Angel as cause for rejoicing. I’ve counted it among my favorite romances since I first read it in 1991. I love having shiny new copies to replace the often-read, tattered originals.
    As always when I visit you Wenches, I leave informed about some topic. I don’t like hunting either. My sympathies are always with the fox when I read descriptions of the chase. But then, I also worry that my deer-hunting family members and friends are off to kill Bambi’s mother on these fall and winter mornings. However, I’m not going to cut Regency settings from my reading or Southern hunters from my life anymore than I’m going to stop collecting Leslie Ford mysteries because the characters are racist or stop reading every DWM author who is sexist.
    If a writer catered to 21st-century PC values, the result would probably be sanitized blandness, and she/he would be accused of historical inaccuracy. Such concerns could also be paralyzing to a writer’s imagination. I think it was Cleanth Brooks who said, “History is a fiction often retold.” Unless one reads only primary sources, there will always be filters in place. My preference for historical romance is enough filters not to pull me out of the story but not so many that I am unable to suspend disbelief.

    Reply
  63. I too view the reissuing of Emily and the Dark Angel as cause for rejoicing. I’ve counted it among my favorite romances since I first read it in 1991. I love having shiny new copies to replace the often-read, tattered originals.
    As always when I visit you Wenches, I leave informed about some topic. I don’t like hunting either. My sympathies are always with the fox when I read descriptions of the chase. But then, I also worry that my deer-hunting family members and friends are off to kill Bambi’s mother on these fall and winter mornings. However, I’m not going to cut Regency settings from my reading or Southern hunters from my life anymore than I’m going to stop collecting Leslie Ford mysteries because the characters are racist or stop reading every DWM author who is sexist.
    If a writer catered to 21st-century PC values, the result would probably be sanitized blandness, and she/he would be accused of historical inaccuracy. Such concerns could also be paralyzing to a writer’s imagination. I think it was Cleanth Brooks who said, “History is a fiction often retold.” Unless one reads only primary sources, there will always be filters in place. My preference for historical romance is enough filters not to pull me out of the story but not so many that I am unable to suspend disbelief.

    Reply
  64. I too view the reissuing of Emily and the Dark Angel as cause for rejoicing. I’ve counted it among my favorite romances since I first read it in 1991. I love having shiny new copies to replace the often-read, tattered originals.
    As always when I visit you Wenches, I leave informed about some topic. I don’t like hunting either. My sympathies are always with the fox when I read descriptions of the chase. But then, I also worry that my deer-hunting family members and friends are off to kill Bambi’s mother on these fall and winter mornings. However, I’m not going to cut Regency settings from my reading or Southern hunters from my life anymore than I’m going to stop collecting Leslie Ford mysteries because the characters are racist or stop reading every DWM author who is sexist.
    If a writer catered to 21st-century PC values, the result would probably be sanitized blandness, and she/he would be accused of historical inaccuracy. Such concerns could also be paralyzing to a writer’s imagination. I think it was Cleanth Brooks who said, “History is a fiction often retold.” Unless one reads only primary sources, there will always be filters in place. My preference for historical romance is enough filters not to pull me out of the story but not so many that I am unable to suspend disbelief.

    Reply
  65. I too view the reissuing of Emily and the Dark Angel as cause for rejoicing. I’ve counted it among my favorite romances since I first read it in 1991. I love having shiny new copies to replace the often-read, tattered originals.
    As always when I visit you Wenches, I leave informed about some topic. I don’t like hunting either. My sympathies are always with the fox when I read descriptions of the chase. But then, I also worry that my deer-hunting family members and friends are off to kill Bambi’s mother on these fall and winter mornings. However, I’m not going to cut Regency settings from my reading or Southern hunters from my life anymore than I’m going to stop collecting Leslie Ford mysteries because the characters are racist or stop reading every DWM author who is sexist.
    If a writer catered to 21st-century PC values, the result would probably be sanitized blandness, and she/he would be accused of historical inaccuracy. Such concerns could also be paralyzing to a writer’s imagination. I think it was Cleanth Brooks who said, “History is a fiction often retold.” Unless one reads only primary sources, there will always be filters in place. My preference for historical romance is enough filters not to pull me out of the story but not so many that I am unable to suspend disbelief.

    Reply
  66. I don’t mind it when it’s in my books of times past. I’m not so keen on it today. I met a young girl online from Yorkshire and she rides and hunts. We’ve gotten into many discussions on the topic. I understand it’s in her upbringing but it’s not from my world so I see the side of the fox where she thinks they are pests that steal chickens. I can agree to disagre lol.

    Reply
  67. I don’t mind it when it’s in my books of times past. I’m not so keen on it today. I met a young girl online from Yorkshire and she rides and hunts. We’ve gotten into many discussions on the topic. I understand it’s in her upbringing but it’s not from my world so I see the side of the fox where she thinks they are pests that steal chickens. I can agree to disagre lol.

    Reply
  68. I don’t mind it when it’s in my books of times past. I’m not so keen on it today. I met a young girl online from Yorkshire and she rides and hunts. We’ve gotten into many discussions on the topic. I understand it’s in her upbringing but it’s not from my world so I see the side of the fox where she thinks they are pests that steal chickens. I can agree to disagre lol.

    Reply
  69. I don’t mind it when it’s in my books of times past. I’m not so keen on it today. I met a young girl online from Yorkshire and she rides and hunts. We’ve gotten into many discussions on the topic. I understand it’s in her upbringing but it’s not from my world so I see the side of the fox where she thinks they are pests that steal chickens. I can agree to disagre lol.

    Reply
  70. I don’t mind it when it’s in my books of times past. I’m not so keen on it today. I met a young girl online from Yorkshire and she rides and hunts. We’ve gotten into many discussions on the topic. I understand it’s in her upbringing but it’s not from my world so I see the side of the fox where she thinks they are pests that steal chickens. I can agree to disagre lol.

    Reply
  71. I love this post. You’re ever so much better than sitting in a classroom with a boring history teacher reciting by rote the same thing he’s spewed year after year. You make it all come alive.
    As to the fox hunting, I have to admit, though I know intellectually that they hunted and many times what ended up happening to the poor fox if the hounds got to it first, I have a pair who occasionally stroll (and I do mean stroll, as if they owned it!) my backyard. They’re beautiful creatures and I can’t imagine killing one.
    So, that said, I’m fine with the hunting, but please, don’t give me graphic details. My mind can fill them in well enough without help, thank you very much.
    :o)

    Reply
  72. I love this post. You’re ever so much better than sitting in a classroom with a boring history teacher reciting by rote the same thing he’s spewed year after year. You make it all come alive.
    As to the fox hunting, I have to admit, though I know intellectually that they hunted and many times what ended up happening to the poor fox if the hounds got to it first, I have a pair who occasionally stroll (and I do mean stroll, as if they owned it!) my backyard. They’re beautiful creatures and I can’t imagine killing one.
    So, that said, I’m fine with the hunting, but please, don’t give me graphic details. My mind can fill them in well enough without help, thank you very much.
    :o)

    Reply
  73. I love this post. You’re ever so much better than sitting in a classroom with a boring history teacher reciting by rote the same thing he’s spewed year after year. You make it all come alive.
    As to the fox hunting, I have to admit, though I know intellectually that they hunted and many times what ended up happening to the poor fox if the hounds got to it first, I have a pair who occasionally stroll (and I do mean stroll, as if they owned it!) my backyard. They’re beautiful creatures and I can’t imagine killing one.
    So, that said, I’m fine with the hunting, but please, don’t give me graphic details. My mind can fill them in well enough without help, thank you very much.
    :o)

    Reply
  74. I love this post. You’re ever so much better than sitting in a classroom with a boring history teacher reciting by rote the same thing he’s spewed year after year. You make it all come alive.
    As to the fox hunting, I have to admit, though I know intellectually that they hunted and many times what ended up happening to the poor fox if the hounds got to it first, I have a pair who occasionally stroll (and I do mean stroll, as if they owned it!) my backyard. They’re beautiful creatures and I can’t imagine killing one.
    So, that said, I’m fine with the hunting, but please, don’t give me graphic details. My mind can fill them in well enough without help, thank you very much.
    :o)

    Reply
  75. I love this post. You’re ever so much better than sitting in a classroom with a boring history teacher reciting by rote the same thing he’s spewed year after year. You make it all come alive.
    As to the fox hunting, I have to admit, though I know intellectually that they hunted and many times what ended up happening to the poor fox if the hounds got to it first, I have a pair who occasionally stroll (and I do mean stroll, as if they owned it!) my backyard. They’re beautiful creatures and I can’t imagine killing one.
    So, that said, I’m fine with the hunting, but please, don’t give me graphic details. My mind can fill them in well enough without help, thank you very much.
    :o)

    Reply
  76. If you’re being historically accurate, it sounds ok to me. I think it would be weird to hear any historical characters speaking 21st century values.

    Reply
  77. If you’re being historically accurate, it sounds ok to me. I think it would be weird to hear any historical characters speaking 21st century values.

    Reply
  78. If you’re being historically accurate, it sounds ok to me. I think it would be weird to hear any historical characters speaking 21st century values.

    Reply
  79. If you’re being historically accurate, it sounds ok to me. I think it would be weird to hear any historical characters speaking 21st century values.

    Reply
  80. If you’re being historically accurate, it sounds ok to me. I think it would be weird to hear any historical characters speaking 21st century values.

    Reply
  81. Foxes were imported to Australia so English settlers could enjoy hunting just like back home. Since then the foxes have decimated native wildlife, and caused havoc with farmers’ livestock, so I have little sympathy for the fox. When I was younger I would go out at night with my father and a spotlight, so he could shoot them.
    Foxhunting was such a large part of life for so many Regency gentlemen, that to leave it out for fear of offending modern sensibilities, gives a distorted picture of the past. Why read historical fiction if you don’t want to know what life was really like back then?
    On the other hand, I don’t particularly want to read about cock-fights or boxing matches, which were also popular with Regency gentlemen. And the large proportion of English fortunes derived from slave plantations, or exploiting the natives of India and China, is usually glossed over in romantic fiction.
    I guess I’m happy with some santitising of history, but not others (call me hypocritical).
    I haven’t read any of Jo’s older Regencies yet, but this one sounds like fun.

    Reply
  82. Foxes were imported to Australia so English settlers could enjoy hunting just like back home. Since then the foxes have decimated native wildlife, and caused havoc with farmers’ livestock, so I have little sympathy for the fox. When I was younger I would go out at night with my father and a spotlight, so he could shoot them.
    Foxhunting was such a large part of life for so many Regency gentlemen, that to leave it out for fear of offending modern sensibilities, gives a distorted picture of the past. Why read historical fiction if you don’t want to know what life was really like back then?
    On the other hand, I don’t particularly want to read about cock-fights or boxing matches, which were also popular with Regency gentlemen. And the large proportion of English fortunes derived from slave plantations, or exploiting the natives of India and China, is usually glossed over in romantic fiction.
    I guess I’m happy with some santitising of history, but not others (call me hypocritical).
    I haven’t read any of Jo’s older Regencies yet, but this one sounds like fun.

    Reply
  83. Foxes were imported to Australia so English settlers could enjoy hunting just like back home. Since then the foxes have decimated native wildlife, and caused havoc with farmers’ livestock, so I have little sympathy for the fox. When I was younger I would go out at night with my father and a spotlight, so he could shoot them.
    Foxhunting was such a large part of life for so many Regency gentlemen, that to leave it out for fear of offending modern sensibilities, gives a distorted picture of the past. Why read historical fiction if you don’t want to know what life was really like back then?
    On the other hand, I don’t particularly want to read about cock-fights or boxing matches, which were also popular with Regency gentlemen. And the large proportion of English fortunes derived from slave plantations, or exploiting the natives of India and China, is usually glossed over in romantic fiction.
    I guess I’m happy with some santitising of history, but not others (call me hypocritical).
    I haven’t read any of Jo’s older Regencies yet, but this one sounds like fun.

    Reply
  84. Foxes were imported to Australia so English settlers could enjoy hunting just like back home. Since then the foxes have decimated native wildlife, and caused havoc with farmers’ livestock, so I have little sympathy for the fox. When I was younger I would go out at night with my father and a spotlight, so he could shoot them.
    Foxhunting was such a large part of life for so many Regency gentlemen, that to leave it out for fear of offending modern sensibilities, gives a distorted picture of the past. Why read historical fiction if you don’t want to know what life was really like back then?
    On the other hand, I don’t particularly want to read about cock-fights or boxing matches, which were also popular with Regency gentlemen. And the large proportion of English fortunes derived from slave plantations, or exploiting the natives of India and China, is usually glossed over in romantic fiction.
    I guess I’m happy with some santitising of history, but not others (call me hypocritical).
    I haven’t read any of Jo’s older Regencies yet, but this one sounds like fun.

    Reply
  85. Foxes were imported to Australia so English settlers could enjoy hunting just like back home. Since then the foxes have decimated native wildlife, and caused havoc with farmers’ livestock, so I have little sympathy for the fox. When I was younger I would go out at night with my father and a spotlight, so he could shoot them.
    Foxhunting was such a large part of life for so many Regency gentlemen, that to leave it out for fear of offending modern sensibilities, gives a distorted picture of the past. Why read historical fiction if you don’t want to know what life was really like back then?
    On the other hand, I don’t particularly want to read about cock-fights or boxing matches, which were also popular with Regency gentlemen. And the large proportion of English fortunes derived from slave plantations, or exploiting the natives of India and China, is usually glossed over in romantic fiction.
    I guess I’m happy with some santitising of history, but not others (call me hypocritical).
    I haven’t read any of Jo’s older Regencies yet, but this one sounds like fun.

    Reply
  86. I was fortunate enough to live in a little English village as a child where the local hunt met to start their runs. The local squire was the master of the hunt and it was quite a sight to see them all gather on their horses in the courtyard of the Ten Bells to drink a stirrup cup before they were off. The horses, the hounds, the clothes – it is still very vivid in my mind though it has been 40 years.
    I am not a fan of hunting, but living in the South it is a way of life. My only objection is to people who hunt for the joy of killing. In our family, if you hunt it and kill it, you eat it. Anything else is a sin and disrespectful to the animal.
    Fox hunting was a big part of an English gentleman’s life. Not too include it in a romance set in the Regency because of 20th century morality is disingenuous. It is very similar to much of the altering of history done today to suit this group or that group’s political view.
    They already go after romance writers for writing impossible fantasies. We might as well get the historical details right!

    Reply
  87. I was fortunate enough to live in a little English village as a child where the local hunt met to start their runs. The local squire was the master of the hunt and it was quite a sight to see them all gather on their horses in the courtyard of the Ten Bells to drink a stirrup cup before they were off. The horses, the hounds, the clothes – it is still very vivid in my mind though it has been 40 years.
    I am not a fan of hunting, but living in the South it is a way of life. My only objection is to people who hunt for the joy of killing. In our family, if you hunt it and kill it, you eat it. Anything else is a sin and disrespectful to the animal.
    Fox hunting was a big part of an English gentleman’s life. Not too include it in a romance set in the Regency because of 20th century morality is disingenuous. It is very similar to much of the altering of history done today to suit this group or that group’s political view.
    They already go after romance writers for writing impossible fantasies. We might as well get the historical details right!

    Reply
  88. I was fortunate enough to live in a little English village as a child where the local hunt met to start their runs. The local squire was the master of the hunt and it was quite a sight to see them all gather on their horses in the courtyard of the Ten Bells to drink a stirrup cup before they were off. The horses, the hounds, the clothes – it is still very vivid in my mind though it has been 40 years.
    I am not a fan of hunting, but living in the South it is a way of life. My only objection is to people who hunt for the joy of killing. In our family, if you hunt it and kill it, you eat it. Anything else is a sin and disrespectful to the animal.
    Fox hunting was a big part of an English gentleman’s life. Not too include it in a romance set in the Regency because of 20th century morality is disingenuous. It is very similar to much of the altering of history done today to suit this group or that group’s political view.
    They already go after romance writers for writing impossible fantasies. We might as well get the historical details right!

    Reply
  89. I was fortunate enough to live in a little English village as a child where the local hunt met to start their runs. The local squire was the master of the hunt and it was quite a sight to see them all gather on their horses in the courtyard of the Ten Bells to drink a stirrup cup before they were off. The horses, the hounds, the clothes – it is still very vivid in my mind though it has been 40 years.
    I am not a fan of hunting, but living in the South it is a way of life. My only objection is to people who hunt for the joy of killing. In our family, if you hunt it and kill it, you eat it. Anything else is a sin and disrespectful to the animal.
    Fox hunting was a big part of an English gentleman’s life. Not too include it in a romance set in the Regency because of 20th century morality is disingenuous. It is very similar to much of the altering of history done today to suit this group or that group’s political view.
    They already go after romance writers for writing impossible fantasies. We might as well get the historical details right!

    Reply
  90. I was fortunate enough to live in a little English village as a child where the local hunt met to start their runs. The local squire was the master of the hunt and it was quite a sight to see them all gather on their horses in the courtyard of the Ten Bells to drink a stirrup cup before they were off. The horses, the hounds, the clothes – it is still very vivid in my mind though it has been 40 years.
    I am not a fan of hunting, but living in the South it is a way of life. My only objection is to people who hunt for the joy of killing. In our family, if you hunt it and kill it, you eat it. Anything else is a sin and disrespectful to the animal.
    Fox hunting was a big part of an English gentleman’s life. Not too include it in a romance set in the Regency because of 20th century morality is disingenuous. It is very similar to much of the altering of history done today to suit this group or that group’s political view.
    They already go after romance writers for writing impossible fantasies. We might as well get the historical details right!

    Reply
  91. Fox hunting has been a hot topic in the UK ever since the hunting ban was put in place.
    There seems to be a big question mark regarding what happens at ‘the kill’. Is the fox killed instantly by one of the hounds or not?
    Always strikes me as strange that the PC these days applies to so many issues, but sex is just about the only topic where there are ‘no holds barred’. Some kind of inverse behaviour? Sex was the big taboo and now it’s not allowed or the big labels of ‘prude’ or ‘censorship’ are flagged.
    After a while it becomes a bit generic.
    Hunting definitely needs to be in the mix of history for a book.
    Made me recall that we no longer see much snuff-taking by the gentlemen. There used to be quite a lot of it, with elegant wrist-turning etc. Possibly taking the lead from Heyer, with Lord Worth and Judith Taverner in Regency Buck.

    Reply
  92. Fox hunting has been a hot topic in the UK ever since the hunting ban was put in place.
    There seems to be a big question mark regarding what happens at ‘the kill’. Is the fox killed instantly by one of the hounds or not?
    Always strikes me as strange that the PC these days applies to so many issues, but sex is just about the only topic where there are ‘no holds barred’. Some kind of inverse behaviour? Sex was the big taboo and now it’s not allowed or the big labels of ‘prude’ or ‘censorship’ are flagged.
    After a while it becomes a bit generic.
    Hunting definitely needs to be in the mix of history for a book.
    Made me recall that we no longer see much snuff-taking by the gentlemen. There used to be quite a lot of it, with elegant wrist-turning etc. Possibly taking the lead from Heyer, with Lord Worth and Judith Taverner in Regency Buck.

    Reply
  93. Fox hunting has been a hot topic in the UK ever since the hunting ban was put in place.
    There seems to be a big question mark regarding what happens at ‘the kill’. Is the fox killed instantly by one of the hounds or not?
    Always strikes me as strange that the PC these days applies to so many issues, but sex is just about the only topic where there are ‘no holds barred’. Some kind of inverse behaviour? Sex was the big taboo and now it’s not allowed or the big labels of ‘prude’ or ‘censorship’ are flagged.
    After a while it becomes a bit generic.
    Hunting definitely needs to be in the mix of history for a book.
    Made me recall that we no longer see much snuff-taking by the gentlemen. There used to be quite a lot of it, with elegant wrist-turning etc. Possibly taking the lead from Heyer, with Lord Worth and Judith Taverner in Regency Buck.

    Reply
  94. Fox hunting has been a hot topic in the UK ever since the hunting ban was put in place.
    There seems to be a big question mark regarding what happens at ‘the kill’. Is the fox killed instantly by one of the hounds or not?
    Always strikes me as strange that the PC these days applies to so many issues, but sex is just about the only topic where there are ‘no holds barred’. Some kind of inverse behaviour? Sex was the big taboo and now it’s not allowed or the big labels of ‘prude’ or ‘censorship’ are flagged.
    After a while it becomes a bit generic.
    Hunting definitely needs to be in the mix of history for a book.
    Made me recall that we no longer see much snuff-taking by the gentlemen. There used to be quite a lot of it, with elegant wrist-turning etc. Possibly taking the lead from Heyer, with Lord Worth and Judith Taverner in Regency Buck.

    Reply
  95. Fox hunting has been a hot topic in the UK ever since the hunting ban was put in place.
    There seems to be a big question mark regarding what happens at ‘the kill’. Is the fox killed instantly by one of the hounds or not?
    Always strikes me as strange that the PC these days applies to so many issues, but sex is just about the only topic where there are ‘no holds barred’. Some kind of inverse behaviour? Sex was the big taboo and now it’s not allowed or the big labels of ‘prude’ or ‘censorship’ are flagged.
    After a while it becomes a bit generic.
    Hunting definitely needs to be in the mix of history for a book.
    Made me recall that we no longer see much snuff-taking by the gentlemen. There used to be quite a lot of it, with elegant wrist-turning etc. Possibly taking the lead from Heyer, with Lord Worth and Judith Taverner in Regency Buck.

    Reply
  96. Hunting has featured in all my books, and it’s front and center in the one I’m working on right now. I had expected to get letters about not just the hunting (where I’ve never “shown” a fox being caught), but about the shooting (where I do show birds being taken). Never a peep.

    Reply
  97. Hunting has featured in all my books, and it’s front and center in the one I’m working on right now. I had expected to get letters about not just the hunting (where I’ve never “shown” a fox being caught), but about the shooting (where I do show birds being taken). Never a peep.

    Reply
  98. Hunting has featured in all my books, and it’s front and center in the one I’m working on right now. I had expected to get letters about not just the hunting (where I’ve never “shown” a fox being caught), but about the shooting (where I do show birds being taken). Never a peep.

    Reply
  99. Hunting has featured in all my books, and it’s front and center in the one I’m working on right now. I had expected to get letters about not just the hunting (where I’ve never “shown” a fox being caught), but about the shooting (where I do show birds being taken). Never a peep.

    Reply
  100. Hunting has featured in all my books, and it’s front and center in the one I’m working on right now. I had expected to get letters about not just the hunting (where I’ve never “shown” a fox being caught), but about the shooting (where I do show birds being taken). Never a peep.

    Reply
  101. I think that a lot of the time we layer our modern day sensibilities, belief systems and prejudices into historicals that we read. I remember watching “Another Boleyn Girl” and was appalled at the way women / daughters were treated and the lengths at which they went to to achieve power, position and wealth. I had trouble dealing with the fact that women were often “bartered” and treated as chattel during the time. That said, after I stopped and thought about it, I was able to come to terms with it all because it was just what they DID back then. It was what they believed and how their society functioned. I learned a lesson then – that I should not judge with my 20th (I guest 21st now) century values to things that have happened in the past.
    So while I may personally object to something that had happened in history, I would not judge it and allow that to cause me to speak up as a negative point in a story, particularly if it was historically accurate.
    Tally ho!

    Reply
  102. I think that a lot of the time we layer our modern day sensibilities, belief systems and prejudices into historicals that we read. I remember watching “Another Boleyn Girl” and was appalled at the way women / daughters were treated and the lengths at which they went to to achieve power, position and wealth. I had trouble dealing with the fact that women were often “bartered” and treated as chattel during the time. That said, after I stopped and thought about it, I was able to come to terms with it all because it was just what they DID back then. It was what they believed and how their society functioned. I learned a lesson then – that I should not judge with my 20th (I guest 21st now) century values to things that have happened in the past.
    So while I may personally object to something that had happened in history, I would not judge it and allow that to cause me to speak up as a negative point in a story, particularly if it was historically accurate.
    Tally ho!

    Reply
  103. I think that a lot of the time we layer our modern day sensibilities, belief systems and prejudices into historicals that we read. I remember watching “Another Boleyn Girl” and was appalled at the way women / daughters were treated and the lengths at which they went to to achieve power, position and wealth. I had trouble dealing with the fact that women were often “bartered” and treated as chattel during the time. That said, after I stopped and thought about it, I was able to come to terms with it all because it was just what they DID back then. It was what they believed and how their society functioned. I learned a lesson then – that I should not judge with my 20th (I guest 21st now) century values to things that have happened in the past.
    So while I may personally object to something that had happened in history, I would not judge it and allow that to cause me to speak up as a negative point in a story, particularly if it was historically accurate.
    Tally ho!

    Reply
  104. I think that a lot of the time we layer our modern day sensibilities, belief systems and prejudices into historicals that we read. I remember watching “Another Boleyn Girl” and was appalled at the way women / daughters were treated and the lengths at which they went to to achieve power, position and wealth. I had trouble dealing with the fact that women were often “bartered” and treated as chattel during the time. That said, after I stopped and thought about it, I was able to come to terms with it all because it was just what they DID back then. It was what they believed and how their society functioned. I learned a lesson then – that I should not judge with my 20th (I guest 21st now) century values to things that have happened in the past.
    So while I may personally object to something that had happened in history, I would not judge it and allow that to cause me to speak up as a negative point in a story, particularly if it was historically accurate.
    Tally ho!

    Reply
  105. I think that a lot of the time we layer our modern day sensibilities, belief systems and prejudices into historicals that we read. I remember watching “Another Boleyn Girl” and was appalled at the way women / daughters were treated and the lengths at which they went to to achieve power, position and wealth. I had trouble dealing with the fact that women were often “bartered” and treated as chattel during the time. That said, after I stopped and thought about it, I was able to come to terms with it all because it was just what they DID back then. It was what they believed and how their society functioned. I learned a lesson then – that I should not judge with my 20th (I guest 21st now) century values to things that have happened in the past.
    So while I may personally object to something that had happened in history, I would not judge it and allow that to cause me to speak up as a negative point in a story, particularly if it was historically accurate.
    Tally ho!

    Reply
  106. Hi Jo, If hunting occurred in Regency times them it is perfectly appropriate in Regency books. Leaving it out, or sanitizing your writing just to appease 21st century sensibilities is a bit much to my way of thinking. Anyway, hunting didn’t only take place in England I believe, but occurred in Ireland, and the Peninsular at least. Hunting was also transported to Australia, with attendant foxes. It was thought that they would make the new world a bit like the old world. Unfortunately the foxes found life in Australia much to their liking and are now a pest. They have joined their compatriots the rabbits which are an environmental nightmare. They were introduced for coursing and the name of the person who introduced the first rabbits is well documented. Good job he is dead or he would be a candidate for the stocks. Still this took place after the Regency.
    I like authors to be reasonably accurate with their facts. In fact I recently read a book, set in 1789 (I know that because the author kindly said so at the start of the chapter), where the heroine was going to stow away on a ship to Australia. Wow – the first fleet (full of convicts) only arrived in 1788 and it was Port Jackson, later Botany Bay, and not known as Australia until many years later. There was another book I read recently where the heroine’s father was transported to Australia in 1815 and her hero sent his private yacht to Australia to collect said father. Problem was herione was pregnant when the yacht left and still pregnant when it returned. In a time when it took on average 8 months one way! Making it a 16 month pregnancy. A bit of leeway here and there is OK, but some facts need to be checked.
    I am looking forward to reading your re-release Jo. I have ordered it from my local bookseller, as many of your books never arrive here, and I can’t always rely on the library either.

    Reply
  107. Hi Jo, If hunting occurred in Regency times them it is perfectly appropriate in Regency books. Leaving it out, or sanitizing your writing just to appease 21st century sensibilities is a bit much to my way of thinking. Anyway, hunting didn’t only take place in England I believe, but occurred in Ireland, and the Peninsular at least. Hunting was also transported to Australia, with attendant foxes. It was thought that they would make the new world a bit like the old world. Unfortunately the foxes found life in Australia much to their liking and are now a pest. They have joined their compatriots the rabbits which are an environmental nightmare. They were introduced for coursing and the name of the person who introduced the first rabbits is well documented. Good job he is dead or he would be a candidate for the stocks. Still this took place after the Regency.
    I like authors to be reasonably accurate with their facts. In fact I recently read a book, set in 1789 (I know that because the author kindly said so at the start of the chapter), where the heroine was going to stow away on a ship to Australia. Wow – the first fleet (full of convicts) only arrived in 1788 and it was Port Jackson, later Botany Bay, and not known as Australia until many years later. There was another book I read recently where the heroine’s father was transported to Australia in 1815 and her hero sent his private yacht to Australia to collect said father. Problem was herione was pregnant when the yacht left and still pregnant when it returned. In a time when it took on average 8 months one way! Making it a 16 month pregnancy. A bit of leeway here and there is OK, but some facts need to be checked.
    I am looking forward to reading your re-release Jo. I have ordered it from my local bookseller, as many of your books never arrive here, and I can’t always rely on the library either.

    Reply
  108. Hi Jo, If hunting occurred in Regency times them it is perfectly appropriate in Regency books. Leaving it out, or sanitizing your writing just to appease 21st century sensibilities is a bit much to my way of thinking. Anyway, hunting didn’t only take place in England I believe, but occurred in Ireland, and the Peninsular at least. Hunting was also transported to Australia, with attendant foxes. It was thought that they would make the new world a bit like the old world. Unfortunately the foxes found life in Australia much to their liking and are now a pest. They have joined their compatriots the rabbits which are an environmental nightmare. They were introduced for coursing and the name of the person who introduced the first rabbits is well documented. Good job he is dead or he would be a candidate for the stocks. Still this took place after the Regency.
    I like authors to be reasonably accurate with their facts. In fact I recently read a book, set in 1789 (I know that because the author kindly said so at the start of the chapter), where the heroine was going to stow away on a ship to Australia. Wow – the first fleet (full of convicts) only arrived in 1788 and it was Port Jackson, later Botany Bay, and not known as Australia until many years later. There was another book I read recently where the heroine’s father was transported to Australia in 1815 and her hero sent his private yacht to Australia to collect said father. Problem was herione was pregnant when the yacht left and still pregnant when it returned. In a time when it took on average 8 months one way! Making it a 16 month pregnancy. A bit of leeway here and there is OK, but some facts need to be checked.
    I am looking forward to reading your re-release Jo. I have ordered it from my local bookseller, as many of your books never arrive here, and I can’t always rely on the library either.

    Reply
  109. Hi Jo, If hunting occurred in Regency times them it is perfectly appropriate in Regency books. Leaving it out, or sanitizing your writing just to appease 21st century sensibilities is a bit much to my way of thinking. Anyway, hunting didn’t only take place in England I believe, but occurred in Ireland, and the Peninsular at least. Hunting was also transported to Australia, with attendant foxes. It was thought that they would make the new world a bit like the old world. Unfortunately the foxes found life in Australia much to their liking and are now a pest. They have joined their compatriots the rabbits which are an environmental nightmare. They were introduced for coursing and the name of the person who introduced the first rabbits is well documented. Good job he is dead or he would be a candidate for the stocks. Still this took place after the Regency.
    I like authors to be reasonably accurate with their facts. In fact I recently read a book, set in 1789 (I know that because the author kindly said so at the start of the chapter), where the heroine was going to stow away on a ship to Australia. Wow – the first fleet (full of convicts) only arrived in 1788 and it was Port Jackson, later Botany Bay, and not known as Australia until many years later. There was another book I read recently where the heroine’s father was transported to Australia in 1815 and her hero sent his private yacht to Australia to collect said father. Problem was herione was pregnant when the yacht left and still pregnant when it returned. In a time when it took on average 8 months one way! Making it a 16 month pregnancy. A bit of leeway here and there is OK, but some facts need to be checked.
    I am looking forward to reading your re-release Jo. I have ordered it from my local bookseller, as many of your books never arrive here, and I can’t always rely on the library either.

    Reply
  110. Hi Jo, If hunting occurred in Regency times them it is perfectly appropriate in Regency books. Leaving it out, or sanitizing your writing just to appease 21st century sensibilities is a bit much to my way of thinking. Anyway, hunting didn’t only take place in England I believe, but occurred in Ireland, and the Peninsular at least. Hunting was also transported to Australia, with attendant foxes. It was thought that they would make the new world a bit like the old world. Unfortunately the foxes found life in Australia much to their liking and are now a pest. They have joined their compatriots the rabbits which are an environmental nightmare. They were introduced for coursing and the name of the person who introduced the first rabbits is well documented. Good job he is dead or he would be a candidate for the stocks. Still this took place after the Regency.
    I like authors to be reasonably accurate with their facts. In fact I recently read a book, set in 1789 (I know that because the author kindly said so at the start of the chapter), where the heroine was going to stow away on a ship to Australia. Wow – the first fleet (full of convicts) only arrived in 1788 and it was Port Jackson, later Botany Bay, and not known as Australia until many years later. There was another book I read recently where the heroine’s father was transported to Australia in 1815 and her hero sent his private yacht to Australia to collect said father. Problem was herione was pregnant when the yacht left and still pregnant when it returned. In a time when it took on average 8 months one way! Making it a 16 month pregnancy. A bit of leeway here and there is OK, but some facts need to be checked.
    I am looking forward to reading your re-release Jo. I have ordered it from my local bookseller, as many of your books never arrive here, and I can’t always rely on the library either.

    Reply
  111. Your ‘PrinnyWorld’ is right next door to my ‘RegencyLand’, I think.
    Should the less pleasant aspects of regency life, including things not accepted now, such as slavery, child labor, lousy public hygiene, injustice, religious prejudice and iffy personal habits be included in romances? Well, yes, I would prefer some awareness of them at least. I read romances to be convinced that love is real, and how can it be real if it only takes place in cloud candy land? So, while I hope the comedy of manners regency author won’t dwell on the horseshit in the streets and the starving people just around the corner from those fine Mayfair townhouses too much, I would like some sense that she and her characters are aware that such conditions exist and think they’re bad.
    But most regencies I come across don’t have much acknowledgement of facts like the animal cruelty that was rampant then – when was the last time you saw a regency cover showing horses with docked tails? Yet that was still a common practice then. So I have to footnote them mentally as I read.

    Reply
  112. Your ‘PrinnyWorld’ is right next door to my ‘RegencyLand’, I think.
    Should the less pleasant aspects of regency life, including things not accepted now, such as slavery, child labor, lousy public hygiene, injustice, religious prejudice and iffy personal habits be included in romances? Well, yes, I would prefer some awareness of them at least. I read romances to be convinced that love is real, and how can it be real if it only takes place in cloud candy land? So, while I hope the comedy of manners regency author won’t dwell on the horseshit in the streets and the starving people just around the corner from those fine Mayfair townhouses too much, I would like some sense that she and her characters are aware that such conditions exist and think they’re bad.
    But most regencies I come across don’t have much acknowledgement of facts like the animal cruelty that was rampant then – when was the last time you saw a regency cover showing horses with docked tails? Yet that was still a common practice then. So I have to footnote them mentally as I read.

    Reply
  113. Your ‘PrinnyWorld’ is right next door to my ‘RegencyLand’, I think.
    Should the less pleasant aspects of regency life, including things not accepted now, such as slavery, child labor, lousy public hygiene, injustice, religious prejudice and iffy personal habits be included in romances? Well, yes, I would prefer some awareness of them at least. I read romances to be convinced that love is real, and how can it be real if it only takes place in cloud candy land? So, while I hope the comedy of manners regency author won’t dwell on the horseshit in the streets and the starving people just around the corner from those fine Mayfair townhouses too much, I would like some sense that she and her characters are aware that such conditions exist and think they’re bad.
    But most regencies I come across don’t have much acknowledgement of facts like the animal cruelty that was rampant then – when was the last time you saw a regency cover showing horses with docked tails? Yet that was still a common practice then. So I have to footnote them mentally as I read.

    Reply
  114. Your ‘PrinnyWorld’ is right next door to my ‘RegencyLand’, I think.
    Should the less pleasant aspects of regency life, including things not accepted now, such as slavery, child labor, lousy public hygiene, injustice, religious prejudice and iffy personal habits be included in romances? Well, yes, I would prefer some awareness of them at least. I read romances to be convinced that love is real, and how can it be real if it only takes place in cloud candy land? So, while I hope the comedy of manners regency author won’t dwell on the horseshit in the streets and the starving people just around the corner from those fine Mayfair townhouses too much, I would like some sense that she and her characters are aware that such conditions exist and think they’re bad.
    But most regencies I come across don’t have much acknowledgement of facts like the animal cruelty that was rampant then – when was the last time you saw a regency cover showing horses with docked tails? Yet that was still a common practice then. So I have to footnote them mentally as I read.

    Reply
  115. Your ‘PrinnyWorld’ is right next door to my ‘RegencyLand’, I think.
    Should the less pleasant aspects of regency life, including things not accepted now, such as slavery, child labor, lousy public hygiene, injustice, religious prejudice and iffy personal habits be included in romances? Well, yes, I would prefer some awareness of them at least. I read romances to be convinced that love is real, and how can it be real if it only takes place in cloud candy land? So, while I hope the comedy of manners regency author won’t dwell on the horseshit in the streets and the starving people just around the corner from those fine Mayfair townhouses too much, I would like some sense that she and her characters are aware that such conditions exist and think they’re bad.
    But most regencies I come across don’t have much acknowledgement of facts like the animal cruelty that was rampant then – when was the last time you saw a regency cover showing horses with docked tails? Yet that was still a common practice then. So I have to footnote them mentally as I read.

    Reply
  116. I live in Virginia hunt country, in fact in the Old Dominion hunt area. http://www.old-dominion-hounds.org/ My property deed has one covenant on it. We must allow the huntmaster through. We can deny the rest of the hunt if we want. The covenant was signed by King Charles (I am not sure which one). Fauquier County has 3 hunts and the US largest Steeplechase race, the Gold Cup.
    A second grader I taught last week prefaced her anecdote with, “My huntmaster says..” I feel very out of time here somedays.
    Many of the more recent mansions (post US Civil War through the 1920s) in Fauquier and neighboring Loudoun were built as hunt houses. I guess we are the US version of the Shire. Oh, Fauquier also has 17 wineries. Come visit.

    Reply
  117. I live in Virginia hunt country, in fact in the Old Dominion hunt area. http://www.old-dominion-hounds.org/ My property deed has one covenant on it. We must allow the huntmaster through. We can deny the rest of the hunt if we want. The covenant was signed by King Charles (I am not sure which one). Fauquier County has 3 hunts and the US largest Steeplechase race, the Gold Cup.
    A second grader I taught last week prefaced her anecdote with, “My huntmaster says..” I feel very out of time here somedays.
    Many of the more recent mansions (post US Civil War through the 1920s) in Fauquier and neighboring Loudoun were built as hunt houses. I guess we are the US version of the Shire. Oh, Fauquier also has 17 wineries. Come visit.

    Reply
  118. I live in Virginia hunt country, in fact in the Old Dominion hunt area. http://www.old-dominion-hounds.org/ My property deed has one covenant on it. We must allow the huntmaster through. We can deny the rest of the hunt if we want. The covenant was signed by King Charles (I am not sure which one). Fauquier County has 3 hunts and the US largest Steeplechase race, the Gold Cup.
    A second grader I taught last week prefaced her anecdote with, “My huntmaster says..” I feel very out of time here somedays.
    Many of the more recent mansions (post US Civil War through the 1920s) in Fauquier and neighboring Loudoun were built as hunt houses. I guess we are the US version of the Shire. Oh, Fauquier also has 17 wineries. Come visit.

    Reply
  119. I live in Virginia hunt country, in fact in the Old Dominion hunt area. http://www.old-dominion-hounds.org/ My property deed has one covenant on it. We must allow the huntmaster through. We can deny the rest of the hunt if we want. The covenant was signed by King Charles (I am not sure which one). Fauquier County has 3 hunts and the US largest Steeplechase race, the Gold Cup.
    A second grader I taught last week prefaced her anecdote with, “My huntmaster says..” I feel very out of time here somedays.
    Many of the more recent mansions (post US Civil War through the 1920s) in Fauquier and neighboring Loudoun were built as hunt houses. I guess we are the US version of the Shire. Oh, Fauquier also has 17 wineries. Come visit.

    Reply
  120. I live in Virginia hunt country, in fact in the Old Dominion hunt area. http://www.old-dominion-hounds.org/ My property deed has one covenant on it. We must allow the huntmaster through. We can deny the rest of the hunt if we want. The covenant was signed by King Charles (I am not sure which one). Fauquier County has 3 hunts and the US largest Steeplechase race, the Gold Cup.
    A second grader I taught last week prefaced her anecdote with, “My huntmaster says..” I feel very out of time here somedays.
    Many of the more recent mansions (post US Civil War through the 1920s) in Fauquier and neighboring Loudoun were built as hunt houses. I guess we are the US version of the Shire. Oh, Fauquier also has 17 wineries. Come visit.

    Reply
  121. Foxes were vermin, and farmers were pleased to have them hunted. The hunts were not exactly an efficient way to control them, but safer for the populace than trapping.
    The true point of riding to hounds was (and is) to watch the hounds work. Those who galloped wildly or jumped unnecessarily were termed “larkers” – an insult – and disdained by the serious hunters.
    The etiquette of the hunt field was (and is) as intricate and strict as that of the ballroom.
    BTW, it was not only cypriots who rode to hounds; there are contemporary diaries of upper class ladies who rode to hounds, including some jumping. Although the lack of leaping head was a major deterrent, one can get over a reasonable fence on a steady jumper without it (I’ve done so). Most ladies would have used gates and gaps, however.
    As for the “last fall”, perhaps it was indeed the last time Christian was known to have fallen. The professionals were very good at presenting a horse to a fence properly, and while almost everyone fell (the backwards seat used in those days was not conducive to recovery when the inevitable bad step occurred), the pro rider would certainly fall less often and probably prided himself on sticking no matter what — notice that in the picture, it’s Christian’s horse falling that puts him on the ground!
    I do miss hunting; loved to go aside, as it’s really more secure than astride (with a leaping head!). There are still hunts all over the US, although most use drags (hounds follow a trail laid down in advance). However, having wrecked my knees, I can still JUMP — I just can’t LAND …
    Off to order the book!

    Reply
  122. Foxes were vermin, and farmers were pleased to have them hunted. The hunts were not exactly an efficient way to control them, but safer for the populace than trapping.
    The true point of riding to hounds was (and is) to watch the hounds work. Those who galloped wildly or jumped unnecessarily were termed “larkers” – an insult – and disdained by the serious hunters.
    The etiquette of the hunt field was (and is) as intricate and strict as that of the ballroom.
    BTW, it was not only cypriots who rode to hounds; there are contemporary diaries of upper class ladies who rode to hounds, including some jumping. Although the lack of leaping head was a major deterrent, one can get over a reasonable fence on a steady jumper without it (I’ve done so). Most ladies would have used gates and gaps, however.
    As for the “last fall”, perhaps it was indeed the last time Christian was known to have fallen. The professionals were very good at presenting a horse to a fence properly, and while almost everyone fell (the backwards seat used in those days was not conducive to recovery when the inevitable bad step occurred), the pro rider would certainly fall less often and probably prided himself on sticking no matter what — notice that in the picture, it’s Christian’s horse falling that puts him on the ground!
    I do miss hunting; loved to go aside, as it’s really more secure than astride (with a leaping head!). There are still hunts all over the US, although most use drags (hounds follow a trail laid down in advance). However, having wrecked my knees, I can still JUMP — I just can’t LAND …
    Off to order the book!

    Reply
  123. Foxes were vermin, and farmers were pleased to have them hunted. The hunts were not exactly an efficient way to control them, but safer for the populace than trapping.
    The true point of riding to hounds was (and is) to watch the hounds work. Those who galloped wildly or jumped unnecessarily were termed “larkers” – an insult – and disdained by the serious hunters.
    The etiquette of the hunt field was (and is) as intricate and strict as that of the ballroom.
    BTW, it was not only cypriots who rode to hounds; there are contemporary diaries of upper class ladies who rode to hounds, including some jumping. Although the lack of leaping head was a major deterrent, one can get over a reasonable fence on a steady jumper without it (I’ve done so). Most ladies would have used gates and gaps, however.
    As for the “last fall”, perhaps it was indeed the last time Christian was known to have fallen. The professionals were very good at presenting a horse to a fence properly, and while almost everyone fell (the backwards seat used in those days was not conducive to recovery when the inevitable bad step occurred), the pro rider would certainly fall less often and probably prided himself on sticking no matter what — notice that in the picture, it’s Christian’s horse falling that puts him on the ground!
    I do miss hunting; loved to go aside, as it’s really more secure than astride (with a leaping head!). There are still hunts all over the US, although most use drags (hounds follow a trail laid down in advance). However, having wrecked my knees, I can still JUMP — I just can’t LAND …
    Off to order the book!

    Reply
  124. Foxes were vermin, and farmers were pleased to have them hunted. The hunts were not exactly an efficient way to control them, but safer for the populace than trapping.
    The true point of riding to hounds was (and is) to watch the hounds work. Those who galloped wildly or jumped unnecessarily were termed “larkers” – an insult – and disdained by the serious hunters.
    The etiquette of the hunt field was (and is) as intricate and strict as that of the ballroom.
    BTW, it was not only cypriots who rode to hounds; there are contemporary diaries of upper class ladies who rode to hounds, including some jumping. Although the lack of leaping head was a major deterrent, one can get over a reasonable fence on a steady jumper without it (I’ve done so). Most ladies would have used gates and gaps, however.
    As for the “last fall”, perhaps it was indeed the last time Christian was known to have fallen. The professionals were very good at presenting a horse to a fence properly, and while almost everyone fell (the backwards seat used in those days was not conducive to recovery when the inevitable bad step occurred), the pro rider would certainly fall less often and probably prided himself on sticking no matter what — notice that in the picture, it’s Christian’s horse falling that puts him on the ground!
    I do miss hunting; loved to go aside, as it’s really more secure than astride (with a leaping head!). There are still hunts all over the US, although most use drags (hounds follow a trail laid down in advance). However, having wrecked my knees, I can still JUMP — I just can’t LAND …
    Off to order the book!

    Reply
  125. Foxes were vermin, and farmers were pleased to have them hunted. The hunts were not exactly an efficient way to control them, but safer for the populace than trapping.
    The true point of riding to hounds was (and is) to watch the hounds work. Those who galloped wildly or jumped unnecessarily were termed “larkers” – an insult – and disdained by the serious hunters.
    The etiquette of the hunt field was (and is) as intricate and strict as that of the ballroom.
    BTW, it was not only cypriots who rode to hounds; there are contemporary diaries of upper class ladies who rode to hounds, including some jumping. Although the lack of leaping head was a major deterrent, one can get over a reasonable fence on a steady jumper without it (I’ve done so). Most ladies would have used gates and gaps, however.
    As for the “last fall”, perhaps it was indeed the last time Christian was known to have fallen. The professionals were very good at presenting a horse to a fence properly, and while almost everyone fell (the backwards seat used in those days was not conducive to recovery when the inevitable bad step occurred), the pro rider would certainly fall less often and probably prided himself on sticking no matter what — notice that in the picture, it’s Christian’s horse falling that puts him on the ground!
    I do miss hunting; loved to go aside, as it’s really more secure than astride (with a leaping head!). There are still hunts all over the US, although most use drags (hounds follow a trail laid down in advance). However, having wrecked my knees, I can still JUMP — I just can’t LAND …
    Off to order the book!

    Reply
  126. Foxhunting, hunting, angling, et al doesn’t bother me in historicals. It’s what they DID.
    The only historical sanitizing I want in my books is: no dying from a bullet wound (just a fever and then they get better), no dying of childbed fever (all remarkably hale heroines who never have complications), and bathing and good teeth.
    I’ll even let you bleed your characters if you want–just don’t let them die if they’re the main characters…. I mean, they bled everyone all the time… *LOL*

    Reply
  127. Foxhunting, hunting, angling, et al doesn’t bother me in historicals. It’s what they DID.
    The only historical sanitizing I want in my books is: no dying from a bullet wound (just a fever and then they get better), no dying of childbed fever (all remarkably hale heroines who never have complications), and bathing and good teeth.
    I’ll even let you bleed your characters if you want–just don’t let them die if they’re the main characters…. I mean, they bled everyone all the time… *LOL*

    Reply
  128. Foxhunting, hunting, angling, et al doesn’t bother me in historicals. It’s what they DID.
    The only historical sanitizing I want in my books is: no dying from a bullet wound (just a fever and then they get better), no dying of childbed fever (all remarkably hale heroines who never have complications), and bathing and good teeth.
    I’ll even let you bleed your characters if you want–just don’t let them die if they’re the main characters…. I mean, they bled everyone all the time… *LOL*

    Reply
  129. Foxhunting, hunting, angling, et al doesn’t bother me in historicals. It’s what they DID.
    The only historical sanitizing I want in my books is: no dying from a bullet wound (just a fever and then they get better), no dying of childbed fever (all remarkably hale heroines who never have complications), and bathing and good teeth.
    I’ll even let you bleed your characters if you want–just don’t let them die if they’re the main characters…. I mean, they bled everyone all the time… *LOL*

    Reply
  130. Foxhunting, hunting, angling, et al doesn’t bother me in historicals. It’s what they DID.
    The only historical sanitizing I want in my books is: no dying from a bullet wound (just a fever and then they get better), no dying of childbed fever (all remarkably hale heroines who never have complications), and bathing and good teeth.
    I’ll even let you bleed your characters if you want–just don’t let them die if they’re the main characters…. I mean, they bled everyone all the time… *LOL*

    Reply
  131. Well golly, I saw Disney’s ‘The Fox & The Hound’ so many times as a little one it’s reflex to recoil when thinking of those fuzzy red critters being chased down and shot. To be honest though, IMHO no matter what time period, I really don’t think killing anything for sport is appropriate. That doesn’t mean I can’t read about it, just that I would prefer the Hero I’m rooting for not be blood thirsty for sport. I understand it’s historically correct, and in some cases takes care of ‘pests’, but in modern times we now know that thanks to the Hunt For Sport mentallity, there are many endagered animals. Hunting for food makes sense, but hunting for sport makes waste.

    Reply
  132. Well golly, I saw Disney’s ‘The Fox & The Hound’ so many times as a little one it’s reflex to recoil when thinking of those fuzzy red critters being chased down and shot. To be honest though, IMHO no matter what time period, I really don’t think killing anything for sport is appropriate. That doesn’t mean I can’t read about it, just that I would prefer the Hero I’m rooting for not be blood thirsty for sport. I understand it’s historically correct, and in some cases takes care of ‘pests’, but in modern times we now know that thanks to the Hunt For Sport mentallity, there are many endagered animals. Hunting for food makes sense, but hunting for sport makes waste.

    Reply
  133. Well golly, I saw Disney’s ‘The Fox & The Hound’ so many times as a little one it’s reflex to recoil when thinking of those fuzzy red critters being chased down and shot. To be honest though, IMHO no matter what time period, I really don’t think killing anything for sport is appropriate. That doesn’t mean I can’t read about it, just that I would prefer the Hero I’m rooting for not be blood thirsty for sport. I understand it’s historically correct, and in some cases takes care of ‘pests’, but in modern times we now know that thanks to the Hunt For Sport mentallity, there are many endagered animals. Hunting for food makes sense, but hunting for sport makes waste.

    Reply
  134. Well golly, I saw Disney’s ‘The Fox & The Hound’ so many times as a little one it’s reflex to recoil when thinking of those fuzzy red critters being chased down and shot. To be honest though, IMHO no matter what time period, I really don’t think killing anything for sport is appropriate. That doesn’t mean I can’t read about it, just that I would prefer the Hero I’m rooting for not be blood thirsty for sport. I understand it’s historically correct, and in some cases takes care of ‘pests’, but in modern times we now know that thanks to the Hunt For Sport mentallity, there are many endagered animals. Hunting for food makes sense, but hunting for sport makes waste.

    Reply
  135. Well golly, I saw Disney’s ‘The Fox & The Hound’ so many times as a little one it’s reflex to recoil when thinking of those fuzzy red critters being chased down and shot. To be honest though, IMHO no matter what time period, I really don’t think killing anything for sport is appropriate. That doesn’t mean I can’t read about it, just that I would prefer the Hero I’m rooting for not be blood thirsty for sport. I understand it’s historically correct, and in some cases takes care of ‘pests’, but in modern times we now know that thanks to the Hunt For Sport mentallity, there are many endagered animals. Hunting for food makes sense, but hunting for sport makes waste.

    Reply

Leave a Comment