Last week, I purchased the electronic edition of JANE AUSTEN’S ENGLAND: DAILY LIFE IN THE GEORGIAN AND REGENCY PERIODS by Roy Adkins and Lesley Adkins. I already owned the hardcover, but it sat on my shelf for over a year and I never pulled it down. This was not due to a lack of interest in the material, but rather a reflection of my changing book-reading habits. I primarily read on my e-reader now. I don’t mind the duplicate purchase. More and more, I’m finding I love to own both versions of my favorite books, whether they be research or fiction.
This particular volume intrigued me, not because I needed another daily-life-in-the-Regency type book–I already own and have read many of these, for obvious reasons–but in the first chapter of JANE AUSTEN’S ENGLAND, the authors included a discussion on “smock weddings.” This was something I’d never read anywhere else, and I find myself intrigued and hoping for many such tid-bits.
According to the authors: “‘Smock weddings’ were a peculiar type of ceremony at which the bride was married naked – although usually she was barefoot and en chemise, wearing only a shift (‘ chemise’), smock or sheet for propriety. The point was that if she brought no clothes or property to the union, the husband-to-be was thought not liable for any debts she might have. Such weddings, randomly reported, occurred mainly in the eighteenth century, particularly for widowed women whose deceased husbands had left debts.” (1)
The authors go on to describe several examples of these ‘smock weddings,’ and I’m hooked on this book.
To learn more about the authors and their books, please click on the following link to visit their website: Roy Adkins & Lesley Adkins
What about you? Do you prefer digital books? Paperbacks? Hardcovers? Or a mixture of both? Or, like me, do you find yourself purchasing both digital and paperback versions of the same book?
Whichever you choose, I wish you many hours of happy reading!
- Adkins, Roy; Adkins, Lesley (2013-08-15). Jane Austen’s England: Daily Life in the Georgian and Regency Periods (pp. 7-8). Penguin Group US. Kindle Edition.