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Did You Know These Facts About The Victorians?

  • We like to highlight important historical dates in Boomerang school planners and this week, we’re focusing on the Victorians.
  • Queen Victoria was born almost 200 years ago today, back in 1819.
  • As Queen of England for over 60 years, we thought we’d commemorate Victoria’s reign by bringing together a few facts about the Victorians that you may not know.

So here goes…

1) Queen Victoria gave us the white wedding dress

Queen Victoria

Although not the first to wear white on her wedding day, Queen Victoria was certainly the most influential.

With such a widely publicised wedding, her white lace dress was copied by brides across the country and thus she is often accredited with popularising this style.

2) Victorians wore black because of pollution

Image result for victorians wore black

Victorian fashion had many influences but one contributing factor to the wearing of black clothing was the heavy pollution.

Ever-present smog would often stain clothes and wearing black became an effective way of masking the discolouring.

3) They gave us creepy literature

victorian-fiction

From The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, to Dracula, the Victorian era produced beautifully chilling tales, often with a Gothic influence, that still impact the horror genre to this day:

The Raven – Edgar Allan Poe

Dracula – Bram Stoker

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde – Robert Louis Stevenson

4) Freak shows were common

victorian-freak-show

A highly controversial but popular aspect of Victorian society, ‘freak shows’ featured ‘attractions’ such as deformed people and animals, uncommonly large or small performers and anything else deemed a ‘freak of nature’.

 

5) Female hysteria was an actual medical diagnosis

female-hysteria

Once a common medical diagnosis reserved solely for women, ‘hysteria’ was seen as a ‘disease of the womb’. Woman considered to have it, displayed symptoms such as insomnia, loss of appetite and even a ‘tendency to cause trouble’.

So what do you think of our facts? Do you have any others to add to our list?

Tweet us @BoomEdLtd to let us know! 🙂

The Boomerang Team.

50 years ago: Torrey Canyon Oil Spill

Here at Boomerang HQ, we like to highlight topics of interest throughout the year, especially when it comes to historical anniversaries.

We do this mainly through dedicated sections in our school planners but you can help us spread the word online too!

Torrey Canyon Oil Spill – What Happened?

This month marks 50 years since the Torrey Canyon oil spill of 1967:

50 years ago, the oil tanker Torrey Canyon disastrously struck Pollard’s Rock on the Seven Stones reef, near Land’s End, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. The oil spill fast became a national crisis, as nearly 3 million gallons of crude oil leaked into the English Channel.

The impact on the local landscape was catastrophic with an estimated 15,000 sea birds killed, alongside large numbers of other marine organisms. The government controversially authorised RAF jets to bomb the remains of the oil tanker and napalm was used to set the leaked oil alight in a futile attempt to halt the situation.

Despite these efforts, the Guernsey quarry that was later named after the Torrey Canyon was still full of oil over 40 years later, continuing to cause damage and death to local wildlife.

However the disaster did result in tighter controls on marine pollution and although there have been oil spills since, clean-up operations have taken a more considered approach.

torrey-canyon-conversation

The Conversation

It’s all very well relating the facts of the disaster but we want to go one step further and turn an article into a conversation 😀

Some possible starting points:

  • Do you know of any more recent oil spills?
  • How were these dealt with in comparison to Torrey Canyon?
  • Is marine pollution still as much of an issue today?

Drop us a tweet using the hashtag #torreycanyon or leave a comment below – we’d love to hear from you!