& Moira Bianchi: Hotels and Inns in Regency Era

quarta-feira, 27 de novembro de 2019

Hotels and Inns in Regency Era

I'm working on a new JAFF, struggling a little actually. The last JAFF I wrote, 9 WAYS TO LIVE PRIDE AND PREJUDICIOUSLY, was a very loosey-goosey affair. Eight short romances inside one main romance, 9 ways has several tales for ODC, historical and modern, OOC and even in reverse roles. 

Now, as I compose DIRTY PETTICOATS, the research has to be more accurate because the story is set entirelly in Regency times, a Pride & Prejudice continuation - actually a mystery romantic comedy or a chick lit full of shenanigans for Darcy and Mrs. Lizzy Darcy to solve. 

Every time I write a new piece I find myself with the most inane doubts and spend days researching to make sure no gross errors are made. Now, the part in which I am struggling is...

Yeah, of course there were... Duh!

Now I am sure because I did research. First I looked into Jane Austen's own words and listed below, secondly I looked over my fellow nosy people in the internet to find tips, thirdly I checked trully historical sources as magazines and catalogues from 1810 to 1819. FYI, I loosely pinpoint P&P around the first two decades of 19th century and only specify the year if it's pivotal to the story.

Anyway, why did I have such a silly doubt?
Well, because I tend to think the highly refined and proper people of Regency England a bit too underdeveloped when compared to the sizzling Victorians. Don't know, maybe because of the power of the industrial revolution.

So, the research began with Austen.

Thank God Gutenberg has all the major novels on line and my Firefox can do 'search' so I skimmed directly to the words and read a bit before and a bit after to judge if it was relevant for me.

You'll find by novel, each relevant quote on 'inn' or 'hotel'. I posted it on another post because it turned out to be really big...

Then my fellow bloggers. 
folks & tales

This post mentions London places, which helped me a lot because I needed to be sure they EXISTED much similarly to what we have today and not exactly tidbits about each one. But it has! Wow, great job!
Grenier's Hotel in Jermyn Street houses friends of the Prince Regent. (the heroin of my novel 'Letters to Dora' lives there!);
- Claredon Hotel had a chef that formerly worked for Louis 18, King of France;
- Grillon's Hotel hosted the very same Louis 18 in 1814;
- Steven's Hotel was fashionable for army men and men about town;
- Mivart's was the hot spot in Mayfair.

The Londonist lists old hotels but not as old as Regency. I used this informations to start my research when writing ALL THOSE DUKES. It is a lovely list. 
Here are the older ones:
- Mivart's, later called Claridge's (till today), was founded in 1812,
- Brown's Hotel was founded in 1837 by former servants of Lord Byron.

This is another great post with lots of juicy details, now for coaching inns. This is something I am always in doubt and I was very glad to have found it.
It talks about the daily dealings, how it all worked, food and accommodations, Royal mail routine, everything.

Finally, the historical archives

Let me tell you that I did research, a little each day but not extensively. As you'll find out when you read DIRTY PETTICOATS, a hotel is only a tiny bit of the story and as much as learning historical stuff gives me pleasure, I do have a ton of other things to do.

So, two references:

'The Gentleman's magazine and Historical Chronicle' 
From July to December, 1819 by Sylvanys Urban, Gent. London.

"This evening the town of Warwick was illuminated in honour of His Royal Highness the Prince Regent's visit to the Castle; and on the next evening, Warwick was again more splendidly illu. minated than on the preceding night. The Warwick Arms Hotel, the Swan, the wool Pack, and the Globe, displayed allegorical and emblematic devices on the occasion. Many of the distinguished visitors, and most of the principal inhabitants, paraded the streets to a late hour, and brilliant fire-works were displayed in all the open spaces."

containing an account of all the direct and cross-roads; together with a description of every remarkable place, its curiosities, manufactures, commerce, population, and principal inns; to which are added pleasure tours to the most picturesque parts of the country; with a new and correct list of mail coach routes; the whole forming a complete guide to every object worthy the attention of travellers.
London : Leigh and Son, 1839.

"Adjoining Bristol is the town of Clifton, situated on a lofty rock overhanging the Avon. Here are the Hot Wells, a great resort of invalids during the summer, for whose accommodation there are numerous lodging-houses, a pump- room, a ball-room, coftee-houses, &c. Inns; Gloucester Hotel, Clifton Hotel, Bath Hotel, York House or Steam Packet Hotel, Swan, Cumberland Hotel, Plume of Feathers, &c. The Avon here flows between rocks of immense height, and the scenery is of the most beautiful description."

So... I do have all I need to go about my business in a hotel in the middle of country Regency England where Lizzy is about to make Darcy really put out!... Well, it'll be for a good cause, really.

See ya.

an off Austen historical love story is available

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