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Bad Wuthering Heights Covers
bizarrevictoria
Are you ready for another installment of BizarreVictoria's Bad Covers on Great Works of Fiction? ME TOO. Previous covers include Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, The Moonstone, Dracula, East Lynne, and Lady Audley's Secret. I can't claim that the covers we examine today will be as funny as previous ones, mostly because it's so difficult to find enough ridiculous covers on any single work.

Today we shall look at Emily Brontë's 1847 novel, Wuthering Heights.

Spoilers
(and also triggers for excessive swearing)
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ON TO THE COVERS

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Survived a Scapling
bizarrevictoria
I found this story on Futility Closet's blog here.

TRIGGERS FOR SCALPING/ BRAINS/ETC.

Some scalping victims survived, like the below gentleman named Robert McGee, who was scalped as a teenager by Sioux chief Little Turtle in 1864.

2008-02-20-how-the-west-was-won

While the details of McGee's scapling and survival are not revealed in the original post, a different story provides more details:

"Texas settler Josiah P. Wilbarger was scalped by Comanches in August 1833. He later recalled that 'while no pain was perceptible, the removing of his scalp sounded like the ominous roar and peal of distant thunder,' recounts James De Shields in Border Wars of Texas.

“Rapidly Wilbarger recovered his usual health, and lived for eleven years, prospering, and accumulating a handsome estate. But his skull, bereft of the inner membrane and so long exposed to the sun, never entirely covered over, necessitating artificial covering, and eventually caused his death, hastened, as his physician, Dr. Anderson, thought, by accidentally striking his head against the upper portion of a low door frame of his gin house, causing the bone to exfoliate, exposing the brain and producing delirium.

"He died in 1845."


Sea Horse
bizarrevictoria
I found this story on Futility Closet's blog here.

"Commandant Louis Joseph Lahure [a general from the Netherlands in the service of the First French Republic] has a singular distinction in military history — he defeated a navy on horseback."

Louis-Joseph_Lahure,_Lieut._Général,_Baron_de_l"Empire

Look how smug he looks. "Yeah. I did that."

"Occupying Holland in January 1795, the French continental army learned that the mighty Dutch navy had been frozen into the ice around Texel Island. So Lahure and 128 men simply rode up to it and demanded surrender. No shots were fired."

Of course, this may not be as impressive as it first sounds--the Dutch has very probably already been approached by surrender by this point and were instructed not to resist Napoleon's forces. So it's less of a 'defeat' and more of an 'interesting confrontation between two types of forces that don't usually come into contact.'

STILL.


Insane Victorian Names
bizarrevictoria
I found this story on Buzzfeed here. I will include photographs of the birth registries, so you can see that none of this is made up. All photographs courtesy of Fraser and Fraser.

The Genealogy firm Fraser and Fraser uncovered the following names while looking for heirs to unclaimed estates.

Neil Fraser, a partner at the firm, said in a press release:


"Our genealogists get to look through hundreds of thousands of birth, death and marriage records. Over the years we have picked out certain names which have amused us and we’ve made a note of them. It shows people in the 19th century had a great sense of humour."

1.) FRIENDLESS

Friendless Baxter, a boy, was born in 1871.

Friendless

2.) FAITH HOPE CHARITY

A girl born in 1889. I wish I knew what her life was like. Mostly because it's far too easy for that name to end up an ironic one.

Faith Hope Charity
3.) LEICESTER RAILWAY

So named because he was born on a carriage at Leicester Train Station in 1863. Understandably, he dropped the “Railway” part later in life.

Leicester Railway

4.) TIME OF DAY

Son of Thomas and Alice Day. This unusual title was a family tradition - both his grandfather and great-grandfather had the name.

Time of Day

5.) ONE TOO MANY

I'm wondering how many siblings he had. It's hardly surprising that he chose to call himself the preferable name of Robert W. Gouldstone instead.

One Too Many

6.) WINDSOR CASTLE

Clearly a family with regal pretensions: her father’s surname was Castle and her mother’s maiden name was King.

Windsor Castle

7.) ZEBRA LYNES

The daughter of James Lynes, a basket maker from Southampton. Born in 1875, she sadly passed away an infant.

Zebra Lynes

8.) ANN BERTHA CECILIA DIANA EMILY FANNY GERTRUDE HYPATIA IUG JANE KATE LOUISA MAUD NORA ORPHELIA QUINCE REBECCA STARKEY TERESA ULYSIS VENUS WINIFRED XENOPHEN YETTY ZEUS

That’s 25 names, one name beginning with each letter in the alphabet. You’ll notice there’s no P. That was reserved for her surname, Pepper. What I find interesting is that her parents were happy to mix both male and female names, in addition to maybe making some up. Has anyone heard of the name 'Iug' before? A quick Google search doesn't turn up many hits. I wonder where they heard it.
Alphabet

9.) THAT'S IT WHO'D HAVE THOUGHT IT

Wait, what? I don't even understand the grammar of that sentence-name. Thankfully this poor boy changed his name to George later in life.
That"s It Who"d Have Thought It

10.) MINERAL GIRL WATERS

Mineral Girl was born in 1892 and had a number of siblings, including her sister, Virginia Waters. Sadly, Mineral died aged 23 during World War One.
Mineral Girl Waters


11.) ALLIEN

Allien Lambert, son of William and Maria Lambert. Born in Chelsea, 1890.

Allien

12.) KING ARTHUR

King Arthur Johnson, born 1885 in Daventry, Northampton.

King Arthur

13.) CLEFT

Cleft Megson, born 1842 in Horncastle, Lincoln. Son of John and Sophia Megson.

Cleft

14.) CLIFTON ANTIVACCINATION

Clifton Antivaccination West, born 1879 in Medway, Kent. What's scary is how easily this could be a name in some trendy, hippie family today.

Clifton Antivaccination

This, if nothing else, should convince people that the Victorians are not some distant, unknown, unfathomable race. People in the Victorian era had the potential to be JUST as idiotic as people today.

Constructive Criticism
bizarrevictoria
A really quick one today. I'm getting married in 2 weeks, so it's probably just going to be a lot of short reblogs until June, when I'll finally have time to do more substantial posts. I found this story on Futility Closet's blog here.

"In 1860, Abraham Lincoln received this letter from a Pete Muggins in Fillmore, La.:

"'God damn your god damned old Hellfired god damned soul to hell god damn you and goddam your god damned family’s god dammed hellfired god damned soul to hell and god damnnation god damn them and god damn your god damn friends to hell god damn their god damned souls to damnation.'"

Eloquent. And useful.


Bonaparte and Echo
bizarrevictoria
I found this story on Futility Closet's blog here.

2010-04-23-bonaparte-and-the-echo

Sometime around 1807, a Nuremberg bookseller wrote the following:

Bonaparte: Alone I am in this sequestered spot, not overheard.
Echo: Heard.
Bonaparte: ‘Sdeath! Who answers me? What being is there nigh?
Echo: I.
Bonaparte: Now I guess! To report my accents Echo has made her task.
Echo: Ask.
Bonaparte: Knowest thou whether London will henceforth continue to resist?
Echo: Resist.
Bonaparte: Whether Vienna and other courts will oppose me always?
Echo: Always.
Bonaparte: O, Heaven! what must I expect after so many reverses?
Echo: Reverses.
Bonaparte: What! should I, like a coward vile, to compound be reduced?
Echo: Reduced.
Bonaparte: After so many bright exploits be forced to restitution?
Echo: Restitution.
Bonaparte: Restitution of what I’ve got by true heroic feats and martial address?
Echo: Yes.
Bonaparte: What will be the fate of so much toil and trouble?
Echo: Trouble.
Bonaparte: What will become of my people, already too unhappy?
Echo: Happy.
Bonaparte: What should I then be that I think myself immortal?
Echo: Mortal.
Bonaparte: The whole world is filled with the glory of my name, you know.
Echo: No.
Bonaparte: Formerly its fame struck this vast globe with terror.
Echo: Error.
Bonaparte: Sad Echo, begone! I grow infuriate! I die!
Echo: Die!

This was considered a seditious text, resulting in the bookseller being courtmartialed and shot. Napoleon later said, “I believe he met with a fair trial.

Let this be a lesson to all people who write bad poetry.

Olalla
bizarrevictoria
I read a thing! I read another thing so you don't have to!

I was walking through a bookshop the other day and found a whole series of Victorian novellas and short stories and saw this one called Olalla by Robert Louis Stevenson (the guy who wrote Jekyll and Hyde, Treasure Island, and Kidnapped, among other things). The back of the book talked about how this short story was about decaying aristocracy (which is what I'm doing my PhD on), plus more vampires, madness, and Gothic creepiness than you could shake a stick at. SOLD.

I don't think I've ever been so disappointed in my entire life. It's like he tried to write a Gothic novel, got all the usual pieces in place, and then just couldn't commit.

Below is my recap of the book in real time, so any predictions I make on the plot are not spoilers. As usual, I swear. A lot.

Olalla, or I Honestly Think the Sparkle-pires in Twilight are Scarier

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THE END

My issues: LET ME TELL YOU THEM

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In short, I give this story a C- for effort.

Reanimation
bizarrevictoria
I found this story on The Spooky Isles blog here. The original soure was The Illustrated Police News, Saturday, August 21st, 1897.

TRIGGERS FOR THE MUTILATION OF DEAD BODIES

The article reads:

“A horrible affair has come to light in Paris. An Italian workman named Carenta, aged fifty, lived at 25, Rue Morand with a woman named Adeline Viard to whom he was intensely attached. Some time ago the woman fell ill and ultimately died, to the great grief of Carenta.

He was so affected by the death that he would not allow the body to be removed from the room in which death took place, but sat with it, brooding over it and mourning his loss, until it is supposed his reason gave way.

He then conceived the idea that if he could feed the corpse it would return to life.

Seizing a knife he cut the mouth until there was a gaping slit from ear to ear, and into the throat he rammed every description of eatables he could put his hands to, and uttering the most horrible cries the while.

As the body did not show any signs of returning to life, he dragged it from the bed, and holding it in his arms, danced round and round the room with it, shrieking loudly.

The neighbours, alarmed at the uproar, broke into the house and discovered what he had done, whereupon he became raving, and savagely attacked them.

It took a number of policemen to overpower him and remove him to the asylum, where he now is, a violent lunatic.”

These stories are, of course, very typical for the time in terms of fetishizing the idea of the lunatic. I have no idea how true any of this is, since it's reeks of Gothic invention, but it's still interesting to see the treatment of mentally ill people in the Victorian era. Note that there is very little about their relationship, how she died, or how he is being treated and if there is any chance for recovery. Nope. It's all sensational face gouging and shrieking and attacking innocent bystanders.

Can anyone locate any corroborating news stories that might prove if this was a fake or not?


Liar Liar
bizarrevictoria
I found this story (in part) on Futility Closet's blog here. The original source was the Annual Register, 1822.

The Duke of Berry, the youngest son of Charles X of France, was assassinated at the Paris Opera in 1820 by an anti-royal bonapartist named Louis Pierre Louvel.

"A man of the name of Desjardins was tried on his own confession, for having admitted that he was an accomplice of Louvel, the assassin of the Duke de Berri.

"The case was clearly proved. Desjardins set up, as his defence, that he was so notorious for his falsehood, that nobody could give credit to a word he said, and produced a whole host of witnesses, his friends and relatives, who all swore to the fact with such effect, that he was declared Not Guilty."

Bloods, Crips, and Yakey Yakes
bizarrevictoria
Really quick one today. This story was found on Futility Closet's blog here.

The below are some New York gang names from 1825-1920:


  • Baxter Street Dudes

  • Car Barn Gang

  • Corcoran’s Roosters

  • Crazy Butch Gang

  • Daybreak Boys

  • Forty Little Thieves

  • Gas House Gang

  • Gopher Gang

  • Hudson Dusters

  • Humpty Jackson Gang

  • Italian Dave Gang

  • Mandelbaum Gang

  • Squab Wheelman Gang

  • Yakey Yakes

Slobbery Jim of the Daybreak Boys cut Patsy the Barber’s throat in a fight over 12 cents in 1853. He later rose to the rank of captain in the Confederate army.


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