Three girls under umbrella

The caption to this painting, in the popular temperance magazine Hand and Heart, reads "April showers bring May flowers". Publication date: 1896. Bit too early for a great domain name from

Wakanaka logoNovember 12, 2017: At left is a detail from the spine of Volume I of Cassell's Illustrated History of India (1876), which is in my collection of antiquarian books. For more information on this work, plus a gallery of pictures of India in the late 18th century, scroll down. Previous blog posts are here. – Alan Ireland, Palmerston North, New Zealand

English political meeting
English political rally: From Hand and Heart, 1895.

Historical features

Punch with booksMany of the cartoons in this section are from bound volumes of Punch, which could still be picked up for a few dollars in New Zealand in the 1990s. At the time, I was planning to open a bookshop called Autumn Leaves. Then the internet came along, and I decided to sell online. The books were originally bought at garage and library sales. More info.

Balkan Beast: Bulgaria in World War I, Part 1.
Balkan Beast: Bulgaria in World War I, Part 2.
Britain's Jewish Problem, by M.G. Murchin, 1939.
Catalog of Edwardian Kisses.
Death of a Zeppelin, 1916, Part 1.
Death of a Zeppelin, 1916, Part 2.
Delhi in the 1850s. Map of British India forces.
El Al map of Israel, 1958, includes all Palestine.
Franco-Prussian War, 1870: Cartoons from Punch.
Glubb debunks Zionist David-and-Goliath myth.
India in the 1700s: Collection of engravings.
Ireland in turmoil: Collection of engravings.
Jews must conquer the world, says Wolffsohn.
Life and Times of Queen Victoria, Vol 1.
Queen Victoria: Early pictures
Routledge's rhymes for children, circa 1885.
Scenes from early 19th-century NZ (1) (2).
Victorian architecture: 102 Dorridge Road.
Victorian Bovril advertisements.
Click for more historical features.

  1870: France's back is against the wall.

Index of other sites

Facebook: Associated site. Chronology of the Muslim community. Memories of an English poet. Financial and other reviews. Redirects to
Pinterest: Associated site. My publications.
Tumblr: Associated site. Redirects to (see below). A bizarre upbringing. Some of my published poems.

Slavery: In war, the fate of the losing side. For more pic-
tures from early Aotearoa / New Zealand, click here.

Victorian foibles and fashions

Cherub drives carThe preeminent Victorian gadget was, of course, the motorcar, shown at left being driven into the 20th century by an ebullient cherub. But there were innumerable others, some of which were picked up and developed by later generations and some of which fell by the wayside. The following are taken from popular Victorian magazines:

Chastity belts for him and her.
Dr Sanden's Electric Belt.
Dr. Scott's Electric Corset wards off disease.
Dr. Scott's Electric Flesh Brush makes you tingle.
Dr. Scott's Electric Girdle revitalizes.
Madame Rowley's Toilet Mask: The first facelift.
Penile ring: Don't leave home without one.

Indian dancing girl
India in the 1700s-1800s: Scenes from Cassel's Illustrated History of India, Vol. I, by James Grant, published in 1876. Click here to view the gallery.
(The above picture shows a girl performing the
"egg dance". Click it to see it in full size.)

Variolation and its devotees

Edward JennerThis is a journal of events and quotes from the vaccination controversy, with special reference to New Zealand. The logo depicts the first high priest of vaccination, Edward Jenner (1749-1823), doing his thing. Click on the link to read more, or leave a comment in the intensedebate window here.

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