Literary Links

May/June 1999


Good News and Announcements

May/June 1999--This issue marks the Two-year Anniversary of Literary Links, our on-line newsletter. I thank you for your support. If you signed up for automatic delivery of this newsletter via e-mail, but haven't received any copies yet, please sign up again. We've had some e-mail addys come back as errors, and one of them may have been yours.

July 28-August 1, 1999--RWA 19th Annual National Conference in Chicago, IL, The Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers. Join RWA for 1000 Years of Romance and Beyond. If you can't make the entire conference, be sure to stop in for the Literacy Autographing and meet your favorite authors on Wednesday, July 28, 1999 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. All proceeds go to literacy foundations. This event is open to the public, so tell all your friends.

August 1, 1999--Join the Golden Network Chapter of RWA as they announce the winners of their Golden Contract Contest. The event will take place at 9:00 a.m., in the Mayfair Room. At that time, the Golden Network will also be awarding its newly-published authors their Alumni status certificates. Come help them celebrate!

RWA Favorite Book of the Year--Did you vote for 1998 Favorite Book of the Year? If so, check out the results on the RWA National web site. Click Here. And while you're at it, cast your vote for your 1999 Favorite Book of the Year.

New author page--Meet Brenda Novak, RWA member and two-time Golden Heart Finalist. Her first book, Of Noble Birth, is due out October, 1999 from Harper Paperbacks. Come read an excerpt on her web site.


New On Literary Liaisons

There are many new additions to Literary Liaisons. After reading about them below, check them out on the web site.

Author's Home Page
Brenda Novak

An Elegant Madness: High Society in Regency England by Venetia Murray
How to Write and Sell Historical Fiction by Persia Woolley
A Writer's Guide to Everyday Life in the Wild West: From 1840-1900 by Candy Moulton
The Writer's Legal Companion by Brad Bunnin and Peter Beren

Various titles by Henry Fielding

Featured Title
Victoria by Stanley Weintraub 

RWA Chapters On-line
Central New York Romance Writers
Magnolia State Romance Writers
Published Authors Special Interest Chapter (PASIC)
Saratoga Romance Writers
Toronto Romance Writers
Volusia County Romance Writers
Writers of Non-Traditional Romance 

Researching the Romance
An Elegant Madness: High Society in Regency England by Venetia Murray
How to Write and Sell Historical Fiction by Persia Woolley
A Writer's Guide to Everyday Life in the Wild West: From 1840-1900 by Candy Moulton
The Writer's Legal Companion by Brad Bunnin and Peter Beren

Writers' Resources
All The Year 'Round--A 19th Century miscellany for the genteel reader
AltaVista Photofinder--Just type in a name or phrase and AltaVista will bring you the photos and also link you to the sites 
Diskus Publishing--Web site of this e-publisher
Glossary of Old Diseases--A page of definitions of 'old' diseases
National Geographic--On-line version of the magazine
Neighborhood Press Publishing--Web site of this print and e-publisher


Feature Article 


By Michelle J. Hoppe

England has always been known for its beautiful gardens. Whether it is the soil, the weather or the loving attention of the gardeners, flowers flourish. The best known of these is the rose, for not only is it a part of everyday life in England, it is a symbol of its royalty.

The rose has a history as old as recorded time, and perhaps even longer, as fossils have been discovered in parts of Asia, Europe and America. The rose has been held in the greatest esteem by many cultures because it provided a source of perfume, medicine and aesthetic pleasure for its users.

England, too, has always revered the rose. In Medieval times, the red rose was preferred for gardens and decoration. The favorite was most likely the Rosa gallica, which was introduced into England in the 13th century. It was also known as the apothecary's rose because of its medicinal qualities. The white rose of medieval England was the Rosa alba, or the York rose. The red rose of Lancaster and the white rose of York imposed upon one another became the heraldic Tudor rose, which is a symbol for the royal household still today.

By Elizabethan times, roses were grown on a large scale like other crops. Ten thousand pounds of petals were needed to make one pound of oil, or attar, of roses. Because of this, only the wealthiest could afford to make their own attar. Country households made simple rose water and distilled only a small amount of the oil. Rose water was the favorite sweet water amongst Elizabethans, although they also made lavender and orange blossom waters.

Rose water had many functions. It was used as a perfume, was sprinkled on floors and linens, and was used to freshen clothes that couldn't be laundered easily. It was also used in cooking for flavoring. In wealthy households, people rinsed their hands in it after eating.

By the Georgian period, the rose was becoming more and more an ornamental flower. It was used in pleasure gardens, and was often the theme when decorating. Fabrics and porcelain alike depicted the popular cabbage and damask roses.

By the end of the 18th century, many new species were being introduced from China. These plants had more than one flowering period, so they could be easily crossed with other varieties. Roses could now bloom throughout the summer. As a result, the varieties multiplied greatly, growing from approximately 21 species in 1660 to over 500 by 1836.

The popularity of roses during the Regency period can be attributed to the Empress Josephine, Napoleon's wife. During her lifetime, she collected the largest number of different roses ever to be gathered in one place. She also encouraged the breeding of new types, adding to her collection.

City dwellers, without extensive gardens, bought roses. Street-sellers and markets sold the blossoms, sometimes tying them with lavender, hyssop and southernwood. People hung these sweet-scented bundles in cabinets to protect the linens from moths.

The Victorians had a love for all flowers, and the rose was no exception. Many horticultural societies formed in the first half of the nineteenth century, and with them, a growing interest in new hybrids. One of the favorite crossings was to produce a striped effect. The rose was now important enough to warrant its own place in the garden. Trellises and other framings were constructed to train the rambling roses.

Also during the Victorian era, the Language of Flowers developed. It was used to convey messages within the strict confines of society merely by the type and color of flower presented or used. The rose had many meanings depending upon its color and species. Red roses are used to convey passion, pink are for simplicity, white means innocence and yellow depicts jealousy. A rosebud signifies beauty or youth, while a withered rose means fading beauty or rejection of a suitor.

By Edwardian times, the fashion for wearing fresh flowers was universal. It could be a small sprig of violets pinned to a hat, or elaborate swags adorning an evening gown.

Over the centuries, roses were used for a variety of reasons, such as medicinal, cosmetic, and decorative. As a curative, it was used in poultices for boils, in tea for sore throats, and in water for a breath freshener. One could also chew the petals to combat bad breath. For cosmetics, it was used mainly as a fragrance, whether it was in ointments, facial cleansers or hand lotions. The rose was also used in food preparation. It was a popular flavoring for jams, jellies, wine and candy. Dried, roses were used in sachets and pomanders to lend a pleasant aroma to clothing and linens. When drying roses, one should collect them throughout the summer and separate them according to color. Once they have dried completely, they can be mixed with other rose petals.

There are two main types of roses--single blossoms and double blossoms. And from these there are many species-- Damask, Cabbage, Hybrid Tea, Provence, Floribunda, Climbing, etc., each with its own variations of color and shading. They all have one thing in common, however. They all have a trace of perfume, although some are more fragrant than others. They range in size from four inches to the thirty feet spread of a climber along a garden wall, truly impressive. As are all of England's roses. For not only are they a native plant, they are part of England's culture and heritage and will remain forever so.


For more on English Roses, I suggest the following references:
Period Flowers: Designs for Today Inspired by Centuries of Floral Art by Jane Newdick, 1991 Crown Publishers, Inc.

A Victorian Grimoire by Patricia Telesco, 1994 Llewellyn Publications.

Personal Beauty by D.G. Benton, M.D. and G.H. Napheys, M.D., 1994 Applewood Books, reprinted from an 1870 edition.

Some are available for purchase in our on-line bookstore in the non-fiction section.

Also see the Researching the Romance page of Literary Liaisons for more suggestions.

(Michelle J. Hoppe, 1997 Golden Heart Finalist, is webmaster for Chicago-North RWA and President of Literary Liaisons, Ltd.)


Editor's Note

As my extended family embarks upon three life-changing milestones--grade school, high school and college graduations, it is perhaps not coincidental that we have reached our own milestone here. It is hard to believe this newsletter has been going out for two years now! When I first started, I didn't think I would ever have enough material to fill a bi-monthly newsletter. As you can see, they keep coming, and keep getting longer! I have included features I hope are of interest to you, the reader. But please, if there is ever anything you would like to see included in this newsletter, or an article on a specific topic, please feel free to e-mail me. We are also open to suggestions for improving the site as a whole. Our goal is to improve you as a writer, so you can reach your own life-changing milestone of publishing a book.


FAQ Column

NOTE: In honor of our two-year anniversary, I thought I would share some of the nice comments I have received from visitors like you. My thanks for your patronage! And please feel free to write with any research or writing questions you may have. We're here to help.

**This page is great!! I'm a junior in high school and an aspiring writer, and recently I wrote a historical romance (set in the French Revolution) for our school's newspaper. Your page gave me a lot of much needed information. Thanks a lot, and keep up the great work!**

**I think this is a great website. I've just started looking through it and look forward to spending many hours in exploration.**

**Great site!!**

**I'm very happy to have found a literary website, it will enlighten my days!**

**I think that this website may be the best thing that could have happened to me. I enjoy surfing the web, but I get frustrated because I could never find what I'm looking for, then I found you. Thanks from me, and hopefully all of the other hopeful authors waiting to be discovered.**


Historical Calendar of Events


W.T. Stead, English journalist

March 17--Willem II of the Netherlands, aged 56
May 10--Japanese ukiyoe painter Katsushika Hokusai, aged 89
September 25--Viennese waltz king Johann Strauss the elder of scarlet fever, aged 45
October 7--Edgar Allan Poe, American Poet, at age 40
Edward Hicks, at Newtown, PA, aged 69
Frederic Chopin, composer

British troops defeat Sikh forces at Chillianwalla and Gujarat and force the Sikhs to surrender at Rawalpindi. Britain annexes the Punjab by treaty with the raj.
Benjamin Disraeli becomes leader of the Conservative Party in Britain.
Canadians seek annexation to the United States as economic depression grips the country following repeal of the British Navigation Acts
Britain reduces duties on food imports to nominal levels under the law passed in 1846.
Maryland slave, Harriet Tubman, escapes to the North and begins a career as "conductor" on the Underground Railway.
Zachary Taylor is inaugurated as 12th President of the United States.
Rome is declared a republic under Giuseppe Mazzini.
The French enter Rome to restore Pope Pius IX.
Dresden and Baden have revolutions which are quickly suppressed.
The Hungarian Diet proclaims a republic April 13 and elects Lajos Kossuth, 46, "responsible governor-president". Franz Josef accepts an offer of help from the Russian czar Nicholas, Russian troops invade Hungary June 17 and hand the Hungarians a decisive defeat August 9 at the Battle of Temesòvár. Kossuth flees to Turkey August 11, his successor surrenders to the Russians August 13.
Sardinia's Charles Albert abdicates, and he is succeeded by his son, 29, who will reign until 1861 as Victor Emmanuel II.
Willem III of the Netherlands, 32, takes the throne upon the death of his father.
Cape Colony forbids the landing of convicts

The Arts

Rienzi by English pre-Raphaelite painter (William) Holman Hunt, 22
Isabella by John Everett Millais
After Dinner at Ornans by French naturalist painter Gustave Courbet, 30.
Nonfiction Publications:
The California and Oregon Trail by Francis Parkman
Physical Geography of the Mississippi Valley by bridge builder Charles Ellet, Jr.
A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers by Henry David Thoreau
"Nemesis of Faith" by Oxford deacon James Anthony Froude, 31.
"Who's Who" begins publication
Ambarvalia by Arthur Clough
"The Bells" and "Annabel Lee" by Edgar Allan Poe
"The Ballad of the Tempest, or the Captain's Daughter," by Boston publisher James Thomas Fields
March 9--The Merry Wives of Windsor (Die Lustigen Weiber von Windsor) premieres at Berlin's Hofoper
April 6--Le Prophète 4/6 premieres at the Paris Grand Opéra
December 8--Luisa Miller premieres at the Teatro San Carlos, Naples.
English actor William Charles Macready, 56, plays Macbeth at New York's Astor Place Opera House May 10. Partisans of U.S. actor Edwin Forrest, 43, gather outside, possibly at the instigation of Forrest who was mistreated at London in 1845. The mob proceeds to wreck the theater, the police are unable to disperse the rioters, the state militia is called in, and the Astor Place riot ends with 22 dead, 36 injured.
Johann Strauss the younger takes over his father's orchestra October 11.

Daily Life
The St. Paul Pioneer begins publication in Minnesota Territory.
News of last year's gold discovery at Sutter's Mill brings a rush of 7,000 "Forty-Niners" to California, whose population will jump in the next 7 years from 15,000 to nearly 300,000.
Thousands of U.S. farmers buy $100 McCormick reapers after being deserted by workers gone to California.
The first gold-seekers from the East arrive at San Francisco February 29 aboard the S.S. California, a 1,050-ton vessel in the service of the new Pacific Mail Steamship Co.
Huntington & Hopkins supplies California prospectors with clothing, food, and equipment.
U.S. commodity prices leap as a result of the California gold discoveries. Workers strike for higher wages in order to live, but wage hikes do not keep pace with rises in the cost of living.
Henderson Lewelling takes his first crop of Oregon apples to San Francisco and sells all 100 of them at $5 apiece to prospectors hungry for fresh fruit
Some 10,000 California gold-seekers will die of scurvy in the next few years. More thousands will avoid scurvy by eating winter purslane, an herb that will be called miner's lettuce.
Domingo Ghirardelli arrives at San Francisco and begins selling tent stores to gold seekers. An Italian merchant who has lived in Latin America, Ghirardelli has seen cacao growing in Guatemala and will build a San Francisco chocolate factory.
Basque shepherds from Argentina and Uruguay flock to California in quest of gold. Many will later become sheepherders on the western range.
Gail Borden invents a "meat biscuit" to provide a portable food for friends leaving in July for California.
Harrods has its beginnings in a London grocery shop at 8 Brompton Road that has been run by Philip Henry Burden. Tea wholesaler Henry Charles Harrod, 49, of Eastcheap takes over the shop.
A cholera epidemic at London wins support for the Health of Towns Association and its Great Sanitary Movement. London clergyman Henry Moule, 48, will invent a dry-earth system of sewage disposal.
A cholera epidemic spread by gold-rush emigrants crossing the Texas Panhandle wipes out the leadership of the Comanche tribe.
The College of the City of New York has its beginnings in the Free Academy that opens on Lexington Avenue at 23rd Street. The CCNY name will be used beginning in 1866.
The first U.S. woman M.D., Elizabeth Blackwell, 28, graduates at the head of her class at Geneva Medical College in Syracuse, N.Y.
Bedford College for Women, founded in London.
David Livingstone crosses the Kalahari Desert and discovers Lake Ngami
Amelia Bloomer begins American women's dress reform
The bowler hat is introduced by London felt-hat makers Thomas Bowler, Ltd., of Southward Bridge Road. His hard shellacked derby headgear will become popular with foxhunters and businessmen.

The first modular prefabricated cast iron and glass "curtain wall" buildings are erected in New York at the corner of Washington and Murray Streets.
Reinforced concrete containing iron bars, patented by French inventor Joseph Monier, 26, will permit construction of taller buildings, bigger dams, and other structures not heretofore possible, but no reinforced concrete building of more than two stories will be erected for 54 years.
Moscow's Kremlin Palace is completed after 11 years of construction.
The first successful power dam across the Connecticut River is completed at Holyoke, Mass.
A safety pin is patented by New York sewing machine inventor Walter Hunt.
French physicist Armand H. L. Fizeau, 30, establishes the speed of light at approximately 186,300 miles (300,000 kilometers) per second.
Railroad construction begins across the Isthmus of Panama to facilitate passage to California.
The Chicago and Galena Railroad reaches Chicago and locomotive number 1, the Pioneer, steams into town in April to begin Chicago's career as America's transportation hub.
The B&O Railroad bridge completed across the Ohio River at Wheeling is the world's longest bridge.
Parliament abolishes Britain's Navigation Acts June 26, ending restrictions on foreign shipping. U.S. clipper ships are permitted to bring cargoes of China tea to British ports.
Budapest's Chain Bridge spans the Danube to link in the cities of Buda and Pest that will not become one city until 1873.

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