Saturday, January 17, 2009

What colour were Queen Victoria's eyes?

After spending a goodly amount of time happily hanging out in medieval England and then Viking times, I'm moving on to the Victorians. 1890s, to be precise. As with all history, I find that some of the things I thought I knew just aren't true. The colour of Queen Victoria's eyes, for example. I could have sworn they were brown. I have already described her as having "dark sorrowful eyes, like raisins with an unhappy past." Well, that's got to go, for starters. They were, apparently, large, protruding, and china blue. How many other fondly held misconceptions will be biting the dust in the days to come, I wonder? Watch this space.

Still I know I'm in for a great ride - the Victorians had that wonderful quirky energy which led them wildly, enthusiastically, sometimes tragically, into trying just about anything. That's a gift to any writer! And if you don't believe me, I've bunged in two images from the Natural History Museum to prove the point! (The first one's the ceiling of the Central Hall, and the second one is part of a huge case jam-packed with tiny, tiny stuffed humming birds ...)

I love my job. Cheers, Joan.

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