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Murder in Parliament

Murder in Parliament sounds like the title of a mystery novel. Sadly, the title is the raw truth. On may 11, 1812, an assassin walked up to the prime minister and shot him. The Right Honorable Spencer Perceval died within minutes of the shooting, and the killer turned himself in moments after that.

The Right Honorable Spencer Perceval courtesy of

Murder is always tragic, and this one made more so for its seeming pointlessness. At first, before details were known, some thought the assassination a French plot. After all, the French seemed to be winning the war. The British weren’t doing well on the continent at any rate. Why not disrupt the government with an assassination? But, no, the killing shot was triggered from the hand of an individual, a subject of Great Britain, John Bellingham.

John Bellingham photo courtesy of

So why did John Bellingham have special pockets sewn into his coat to hold his pistols concealed? Why did he wait in the lobby of Parliament, wait for Perceval to appear, then walk up and shoot him through the heart?

Many said he was insane, that he must be insane. Others denied this fact, one of those being John Bellingham himself. Another who said he was sane was Sir James Mansfield, the judge who presided over his brief trial and pronounced his immediate sentence.

Bellingham wanted justice. He may or may not have been the John Bellingham who went to sea as a midshipman in the 1780s. That ship went aground after the crew mutinied. He may have been the same John Bellingham who’s tin business in London failed a few years later. No one is quite sure. That he worked in a counting house is certain. He also went to Russia for  importers and exporters, and there is where the real troubles began.

A ship insured by Lloyds of London was lost in the White Sea. Before the merchants could collect on the insurance, Lloyds received an anonymous letter saying the ship had been sabotaged. Suspecting Bellingham was the author of said letter, the owners of the vessel claimed he owed a substantial debt, which landed Bellingham in a Russian prison. A year later, he managed his release, went to St. Petersburg, and dove into more trouble that landed him back into a Russian prison. He was released in 1808, received permission from the czar to leave Russia, and ended up back in England in 1809—to no happy homecoming.

Bellingham petitioned the British government for compensation for his imprisonment in Russia. But nothing was forthcoming. Due to Russia’s relationship with France at the time, the British had broken off diplomatic relations with Russia. At the persuasion of his wife, Bellingham gave up and went to work, but tried again in 1812.

Allegedly, a civil servant at the foreign office told Bellingham he could take whatever measures he thought proper. I expect this clerk thought Bellingham would write letters or even waylay someone like Lord Gower, the British ambassador to Russia at the time of Bellingham’s imprisonment in that country.

Bellingham, however, made other plans. He bought the pistols, had the pockets made, and executed his plan as Perceval strode through the lobby of Parliament.

Assassination photo courtesy of

One can dismiss the incident as someone with a grievance taking it out on the highest person he could reach. One might think that people would be appalled by him and call out with joy at his hanging. On the contrary. Much sentiment lay with Bellingham. He had carried out justice and maybe in the future, those in high places would listen when petitioned by a wronged common man.

Indeed, though no one—or perhaps a few far-sighted thinkers of the time—realized that this assassination did change the course of history, that John Bellingham’s actions brought about justice. A different government came into power after Perceval leadership was gone, a government that reenacted much needed reforms that helped the poor.

As for Bellingham’s family. A collection was taken, and his family ended with far more money than they had before his dastardly deed and consequent execution.

Originally posted 2012-05-14 10:00:00.

Poets of the Regency: Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Hi, Jessica here.

So, when you’re longing for a little taste of the Regency, you go to your shelves and pick up one of the romantic works by one of the authors here at Regency Reflections. But if you lived in the Regency and were looking for some good reading, who would be on your bookshelf?

Poets! Yes, the Regency library would have the classics, it would have some novels and some histories, it would have volumes of sermon collections. But the well-stocked Regency bookshelf would also have a good selection of contemporary poets. And in this blog series, I’m going to introduce you to them. Hopefully you’ll find a few new favorites of your own.

The Clear-Eyed Addict

If Samuel Taylor Coleridge had lived in our times, we would have said he was mentally ill. Actually, likely, if he had lived in our times he would have been diagnosed at a young age and found a successful medication schedule and no one but his intimates would have known he was ill at all.

But Coleridge’s life spanned the turn of the 18th century, and so he had to deal with his illness (scholars disagree on whether it was depression or bipolar or something else) on his own. He used opiates, as many in his day did, and struggled along. He was plagued with troubles in both marriage and career, and yet despite his difficulties, he produced some of the most brilliant poetry in the English language, including the famous “Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner.”

Perhaps the most well-known line from that poem is the horribly ironic, “Water, water everywhere, nor any drop to drink!” but the quatrain that wins my heart is:

This seraph-band, each waved his hand,

No voice did they impart –

No voice; but oh! the silence sank

Like music on my heart.

Coleridge tended towards long poems, either narrative or lyrical, though his second-most-famous poem, “Kubla Khan” is short and accessible. If you’d like a taste of the lithe lyricism that made Coleridge famous, I encourage you to go read “Kubla Khan” – it won’t take you but five minutes.

But I admit that the moment I fell in love with Coleridge was when I discovered that he, all those decades ago, shared my admiration of an even older poet, John Donne. (I love it when I find out that one author I love loves the work of another author I love!) In about 1811, Coleridge wrote this short, pithy observation on Donne’s work – read it aloud to catch the full brilliance:

With Donne, whose muse on dromedary trots,

Wreathe iron pokers into true-love knots;

Rhyme’s sturdy cripple, fancy’s maze and clue,

Wit’s forge and fire-blast, meaning’s press and screw.

If Coleridge’s way with words catches your fancy, be happy to know he left plenty of work for you to explore. His career was scattered and inconsistent, but he scribbled his whole life through, and when you’ve finished the poetry, you’ll still have his vast reams of marginalia to go through – he kept notebooks full of comments on the works of other writers, and they’re fascinating reading, full of the wit and wisdom of a man whose intelligence and grace shown through the dark clouds of his disease.

Peace of Christ to you,

Jessica Snell

Originally posted 2012-05-09 10:00:00.

Sex Trafficking in Victorian London

Sex Trafficking in Victorian London

                Victorian London can be a wonderful place to visit, if you enter into the realm where balls and routs are common place. There is another setting not often disclosed. In the poorer element of the city, life was quite different. Young women from the country came to London to better themselves by taking jobs in the homes of the rich. Unscrupulous people enticed them with such offers and when they arrived in the teeming bustle of the strange city instead of positions as scullery maids or chambermaids, they were sold into sexual slavery.

               Virgins were in high demand during this era because it was a common belief that having intercourse with them would cure venereal diseases. Once the young girls were sold to the highest bidder for anywhere from 5 to 25 Lire they would then be turned out to work as common doxies. The shame of their experiences deterred them from returning home. Likely they would have been turned away as outcasts. Newly arrived in a busy city without the presence of family protection left them with nowhere to turn. They were trapped in the miserable circumstances wherein they landed.

Many of the young women turned to alcohol to deaden the hopelessness surrounding them. I would venture to guess they needed the anesthetic effect of the strong spirits to be able to bear the atrocities expected of them.  It is said in one of the brothels the Madame kept a room set aside with torture instruments for those inclined to S & M. The expected life span of these young women was four to seven years. Venereal disease was rampant. In 1850 half of the outpatients in the main hospital in London suffered from syphilis. Parliament passed the Contagious Disease Act in 1864 in an attempt to regulate prostitution in six garrison towns and ports. Their assumption was soldiers and sailors needed prostitutes. The female population of that day had to exercise caution in their daily treks, for any woman found within a certain area around the garrisons could be arrested and physically examined for sexually transmitted diseases.

William Gladstone                William Gladstone, a liberal politician and Prime Minister was an angel of mercy for some of these young women. He would walk the streets of London at night and encourage the prostitutes he found to come home with him where he and his wife would provide them a meal and shelter with the offer of help to change their lives. He assisted the sisters at the House of Mercy at Clewer near Windsor. The women were housed there until respectable employment could be arranged for them.

Today sex trafficking remains a growing problem in the United States. Horror stories of young girls being sold to slavers who use them as prostitutes are rampant. One young woman told her story of being molested by her father at the age of five and sold to a stranger by him when she became too old. She was twelve. There are Christian facilities today who, like William Gladstone are trying to help these women recover from their painful past. It is not a quick fix. They must be deprogrammed and taught how important they are and how much Jesus loves them. Sometimes this can take years.

Originally posted 2012-05-07 10:00:00.

Mothers: Count Your Days & Your Blessings

Teach Us, Lord, to Count Our Days

by Susan Karsten

As those interested in bygone societies, particularly Regency-era England, we can profit by comparing the circumstances of mothers.  Are we appropriately thankful for the full cup of days most of us enjoy from our Lord in the 21stcentury?

Life Expectancy:  In the early 1800s, the life expectancy was around 40 years. Today, we can expect, Lord willing, 81 years (women), 77 years (men). One reason among several for this disparity is the high rate of infant mortality in the Regency.

Infant Mortality:  As best as can be figured (since un-baptized babies weren’t counted in the parish registers which are the source for most data of this nature), an estimated 15% of infants died before the age of one during the Regency era. The United States has a rate of .68% (early 2000s).

Sorrowing Couple

Being Thankful: The crushing blow of losing a child soon after carrying it for nine months is a sorrow for the ages. It is much easier to quantify the statistics than the grief. We mothers who are blessed with living children must give praise and thanks for God’s mercy on us. We do not have the fearsome specter of early death hanging over us. Praise Him!

 Psalm 90, a versification*

O teach Thou us to count our days

And set our hearts on wisdom’s ways;

Turn, Lord, to us in our distress,

In pity now Thy servants bless;

 Let mercy’s dawn dispel our night,

And all our day with joy be bright.

O send the day of joy and light,

For long haas been our sorrow’s night;

Afflicted through the weary years,

We wait until Thy help appears;

With us and with our sons abide,

In us let God be glorified,

In us let God be glorified.

So let there be on us bestowed

The beauty of the Lord our God;

The work accomplished by our hand

Establish Thou, and make it stand;

Yea, let our hopeful labor be

Established evermore by Thee.

*Blue Psalter Hymnal #174

Originally posted 2012-05-04 10:00:00.

Historical Fashion Spring Fling!

by Linore Rose Burkard

Let’s take a look at some fabulous fashion plates from that most-regency of publications, Ackermann’s Repository.(Most of the following comes directly from my latest newsletter. If you’re not yet subscribed, sign up in seconds on my website. It’s free!)

Rudolph Ackermann’s Repository of Arts, Literature, Fashions, Manufactures, &c. was a much-enjoyed magazine for people of the regency, second only in importance to women of fashion after “La Belle Assemblee.”

With no electronic media, the fashion “plates” in these periodicals were the main source of information regarding current fashion, which spread from Paris to London and then the rest of the world, including America.

1819 Walking Dress

Above:  Walking Dress 1819. Note that each of the illustrations here are from SPRING publications of Ackermann’s for the year designated. Seems that England (or France, in some cases) must have been rather chilly, even up to June.

Walking Dress, Jaconet Muslin 1819

      Walking Dress, Jaconet Muslin (“Round Dress”) 1819

                                  Morning Dress, 1819

French 1819

                  French Dress, 1819

               1819 Evening Dress

Evening with fan

                   1819 Evening Dress

                  1829 Evening Dress

Strictly speaking, 1829 is post-Regency (George, Prince of
Wales, became Regent in 1811 and then King in 1820. Since he reigned until 1830, I include his reign in my definition of the “regency”. Society was distinct beneath his regency and reign.)

           Walking or Carriage Dress, 1829.

Muffs were popular since Georgian days. I had a fluffy white muff when I was in first grade and still remember it with fond affection. (sigh)

            English Dinner Dress 1829

The bonnets during this period were amazing concoctions, weren’t they? I saw a spoof about bonnets in an old periodical recently. I’ll have to try and dig it up. (Editorials of the day often included commentary about current fashions, and more often than not, they were critical.)

      May 1829, English Morning Dress

In some cases, morning dress seems to have referred to something a lady would wear only in her home, such as the earlier pics (above) of 1819 morning gowns. In this case, the designation of “morning” appears to mean a day-dress (walking dress) which is obviously meant for outdoors, while emphasizing that it isn’t dinner or promenade or evening attire. The head-dress is much simpler in style also.

                    1829 Dinner Dress

Notice how the 1829 fashions are almost Victorian in appearance? Think about this: Victoria didn’t take the throne until 1837–not for another 8 years! In this and the next illustration, you can clearly see that the lower waist had  returned to women’s clothing long before the young Victoria was crowned.Nevertheless, most people would look at the above and think “Victorian.” (But now you know better.) : )

                 March 1829 Opera Dress 

Hasn’t this been fun? The contrast between 1819 and 1829 fashions is very evident. It’s not always so easy to tell different decades apart!

Linore Rose
Inspirational Romance to Warm the Soul
Coach and Four: Allisandra’s Tale
Inspirational Regency Romance
Woman of Faith Blog

Originally posted 2012-04-30 06:00:00.

Angst: Confessions of a Regency Writer

Regency writers and readers are some of the most persnickety lovers of any genre. On fan lists, I have seen people complain about a book for everything from the hero wearing trousers in 1800, to a boxing match that took place six months after the book’s setting. It’s enough to give writers in the genre heart palpitations.

I think about this as I await the final page proofs on A Flight of Fancy, my next Regency.

What errors did I make and who will find them and what will they say to me or others? Will it stop them from enjoying the book so much they’ll say bad things about it? Angst. Angst. Angst.

The problem is that the Regency is such a specific genre. The time period is brief, even when we stretch it from the true nine-year period, to the thirty year time publishing allows in many cases.

British Union Jack

The Regency is location specific. Having a Regency take place outside of the British Isles isn’t impossible if one has mainly British characters (which can include Scottish, Welsh, and Irish), and those characters must act, speak, and think like a Regency era person. In other words, the priorities in life are: Family, Country, God. Hmm. More problems when adding the inspirational element to the genre.

In short, the Regency novel must sound, smell, taste, look, and, above all, feel like early nineteenth century Britain. If you could change titles to mister and missus, or exchange a location in England for one in America, the novel might not be true Regency novel.

Or is it? Do readers really know that much or care?

Yes, writing a Regency novel does not require a great deal of knowledge of the time and place; it requires the ability to withstand the angst of knowing one made some flaw and whether or not it will it be fatal.

Laurie Alice Eakes

Originally posted 2012-04-25 02:54:08.

Alas, Providence Said No

Vanessa here,

One of my loop friends got a jolt this week, and her openness inspired me. Thanks Rachel. What God has for you, is for you alone.

Alas, Providence Said No.

I sit at my low window and draw the curtains open. Every handkerchief is tear-stained, and I seek a breeze to dry my face.

But the air is calm and still.

Alas, Providence has said no again.

The day is bright. The branches of the mighty oak framing my view revels in the shine and casts shadows upon the open panes and my wrung hands. I should be outside with my oils and canvas, capturing the lilies on the pond, the thick greenery of the close heather on my lawn. Yet, my artist’s soul is dour. My paints would be onyx or charcoal. I possess no light today.

With a dry spot on my wrist, I scrub my wet cheek. On my lap weighs the heavy letters of Your promises. I’ve no strength to open my Bible, or dump it from my skirts. I’m frozen in regret. What if I said…. What if….

Can any of Your words soothe my restlessness? I know You have plans for me, but what of mine?

Did You not know how much I craved the affection? It wasn’t a trifle to me.

Did You not care how I set my heart upon this dream?

Why let my mind to think, my soul to wish, if I am to be crushed when nothing comes to fruition?

Out on the lawn, a furry squirrel chases a rolling stone, no an acorn. As he seizes on the nut, it squeezes out of his paws and scatters to the pond’s edge. Undaunted, the animal makes a dash only to witness his prize tumble away. The acorn doesn’t float. It sinks, rippling the stagnant waters.

I am one with the varmint.

I turn away from the window. With a deep breath, I declare myself to be reasonable. I should chase a different nut and accept my lot, for You know what’s best.

But I am not so easily consoled. I wish to join the squirrel and reclaim the vision gone away, even in the murky depths.

My mind resounds with bitter memories, those times I forced my desires. Yet, in the wake of those disappointments, I still want my way now. I’ll admit to a poor track, missteps, but Abba, isn’t today different.

Oh, let me be Gideon. My fleece, my face, is still sodden with misery. Therefore, allow me to question Your hand.

Did my pleading for this cause, fall away like Abraham’s for Sodom? Was my dream truly so bad?

Can you not hear Habakkuk’s anguish in my voice? Have You forsaken me?

Is it so, Abba? Is it so?

The glazed glass rattles. A soft rush of air billows the gauzy muslin dressing the casement. Constant and steady this wind, this balm of Gilead, covers me. Hints of fragrant lilies and peppery heather fill my lungs, clearing my sniffles. I feel an embrace in my spirit. Thank You for not leaving me. I welcome this no.

Scratching noises assault my ears.

A few feet away, my friend, the squirrel, has scampered up the oak and dances on a thick limb. His cheeks are pregnant, bulging twice the size of before. He must’ve gathered other acorns. My brethren’s sorrow seems short-lived.

Chuckles gather in my throat. A glimmer of my joy has returned. Could it be Sarah’s laugh at impossibility? Yet, it is true. Abba, will You spin all my ashes to gold? I close my eyes and let the breeze stroke my countenance, tickle the bugle beads of my collar. I release more of my pity and woe.

Abba, my Father, my Provider, renew my heart to Your plans, Your ways. Ready my spirit to receive your promised provisions. Amen.

I hope this helps when God says, “No,” in your life.  Even though it is hard,  never be in doubt of His plans for your life. Below are some scriptures I use to strengthen my resolve. May they bless you, too.

Here’s God’s Promise of His Plans for your life:
Jeremiah 29:11

King James Version (KJV)

11For I know the thoughts (plans) that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

Here’s the Catch, Delight 1st Then He gives your desires. (Note-if your delighting then His will and yours will match):
Psalm 37

3Trust in the LORD, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.

4Delight thyself also in the LORD: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

5Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.

Here’s the patience clause:
Psalm 37

7Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way…

His promises for an obedient life:
Deuteronomy 28
1And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the LORD thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth:

2And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God.

3Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field.

4Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep.

5Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store.

6Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out.

7The LORD shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways.

8The LORD shall command the blessing upon thee in thy storehouses, and in all that thou settest thine hand unto; and he shall bless thee in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.

9The LORD shall establish thee an holy people unto himself, as he hath sworn unto thee, if thou shalt keep the commandments of the LORD thy God, and walk in his ways.

10And all people of the earth shall see that thou art called by the name of the LORD; and they shall be afraid of thee.

11And the LORD shall make thee plenteous in goods, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy ground, in the land which the LORD sware unto thy fathers to give thee.

12The LORD shall open unto thee his good treasure, the heaven to give the rain unto thy land in his season, and to bless all the work of thine hand: and thou shalt lend unto many nations, and thou shalt not borrow.

13And the LORD shall make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if that thou hearken unto the commandments of the LORD thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do them.

Here’s David’s prayer for God to save us and grant us our heart’s desire.
Psalm 20
1The LORD hear thee in the day of trouble; the name of the God of Jacob defend thee;

2Send thee help from the sanctuary, and strengthen thee out of Zion;

3Remember all thy offerings, and accept thy burnt sacrifice; Selah.

4Grant thee (my plans) according to thine own heart, and fulfill all thy counsel.

5We will rejoice in thy salvation, and in the name of our God we will set up our banners: the LORD fulfill all thy petitions.

Finally, for comfort in your sorrow, read of the Bible Hero’s who questioned God and lived.

Sarah – Genesis 18:11-15

Abraham – Genesis 18:23-33

Habakkuk – Habakkuk: 1:1-3

Gideon – Judges: 6:36-40

Job – Job: 6-42


Originally posted 2012-04-13 10:00:00.

Naomi Rawlings Interview & Give-away! “Sanctuary for a Lady”

         Up-and-coming author, Naomi Rawlings, fills us in on her exciting new book, released on April 3. Titled Sanctuary for a Lady, it will be published by Love Inspired Historical. Naomi is the young mother of two little boys (5 & 2). She resides in northern 

Michigan, just a few miles from Lake Superior.  She shared about the book and some other fascinating aspects of her life.

Naomi, tell us about the book.
        The injured young woman Michel Belanger finds in the woods is certainly an aristocrat. And in the midst of France’s bloody revolution, sheltering nobility merits a trip to the guillotine. Yet despite the risk, Michel knows he must bring the wounded girl to his cottage to heal. Attacked by soldiers and left for dead, Isabelle de La Rouchecauld has lost everything. A duke’s daughter cannot hope for mercy in France, so escaping to England is her best chance of survival. The only thing more dangerous than staying would be falling in love with this gruff yet tender man of the land. Even if she sees, for the first time, how truly noble a heart can be….settings are often included in the early Regency subgenre, perhaps for 

Even though your story is set in France, it’s considered early Regency, correct?
French Revolutionary lack of a better place to put them. The French Revolution affected so much during the early Regency period that it can’t be ignored. Sanctuary for a Lady covers from late March, 1794 to early May 1794. Though it’s set during the Reign of Terror, the novel isn’t bloody or gory.  Its main focus is the romance between the hero and heroine, but the guillotine poses a serious threat to both my main characters (as it did to many French men and women during that time).



What, if any were the challenges to writing in this period?
     The biggest challenge was finding research sources. There are numerous resources about the peasants and local governments of North West France during the French Revolution, but they’re all in French. And I don’t read–or speak–French. Most English language sources pertain to Paris and the upper class, and my story is about provincial peasants (or almost peasants, as far as my heroine is concerned). Do you have a theme verse for your novel? The verse at the beginning of my novel ties in well with my story:  Colossians 3:13–Even as Christ forgave, so do ye also. Forgiveness plays a very strong role in the novel, though I don’t want to reveal much more beyond that.

Does any of your background in life bear on you becoming a writer?
     Those who know me say they can easily see me writing novels, but for me, writing novels kind of came out of nowhere. I’ve always loved reading and did a decent job at writing during high school and college. But as far as writing a novel and getting paid for it goes, the idea never occurred to me until after I’d graduated from college, gotten married, and had a baby. By then, I was reading so much during my baby’s nap times, that I decided to try to write a book, to give me something else to do with my time.

What drew you to be interested in writing Regency Historical Romance?
     Not one thing in particular. I get a lot of story ideas, more than I could ever possibly flesh out into a novel, and as it turned out, I decided to set one during the French Revolution. Sanctuary for a Lady has an interesting twist at the end, and I knew Love Inspired Historical was looking for European settings. So I hoped those two things would be enough to get my publisher’s attention, and they were!

What motivates your writing?
     I write because I enjoy it and it provides me with a bit of a challenge. I write to entertain people, and I try to write powerful, inspiring stories.

Thank you, Naomi, for sharing your writing journey with us, and for the copy of your new book Sanctuary for A Lady, which you will give away to one of the guests who leaves a comment below!

You’re welcome, and thanks for hosting me, Susan!

Originally posted 2012-04-11 10:00:00.

A Bump in the Road

A Bump in the Road

Two years ago on the Thursday before Easter, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I believed God was calling me home. I was so stressed about leaving my family because without me here who would pray them into heaven? It took me three days to let go. On the third day I realized He didn’t need my help and it would be easier to pray from heaven because the devil wouldn’t be able to interfere there.

As I let go of them and accepted whatever God had in store for me, my faith began to arise. My prayer was “Let me do this with grace and dignity.” He did. Through radiation therapy because I was so tired, I cried all the way to my treatments. When it was over I went back to work. I look back on it now and that mountain I climbed looks like a little bump in the road. Isn’t it strange how when we are in the midst of a trial it looks so big, yet when it is over we look back and its size seems to diminish?

I wonder if we told ourselves at the beginning of each trial, “Soon it will be just a bump in the road,” if we would get through it faster. Having the faith to believe God is going to help us find our way out sets the stage for the enemy’s defeat. Satan loves to slam us into a wall wanting us to feel overwhelmed and defeated from the beginning. I have found it really frustrates him when I trust God to bring me through from the outset.

Obviously He wasn’t ready for me two years ago, but when He is I’ll be ready. Life has new meaning for me now. Going through the ordeal of cancer and the multiple surgeries it required has made me stronger. For me ‘what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger’ has been proven true. This year the trials I am facing are even more difficult than surviving cancer, but I know from experience He is in control and His will will be done. He has my best interests at heart and no matter how difficult life on earth becomes, He will help me through. This time I am choosing to see the bump instead of the mountain.

If you are going through a hard place, remember, He is faithful forever. I like to think about how Jesus spent the three days from Good Friday to Easter Sunday. My favorite part is when He took the keys away from Satan. Can’t you see him cowering and sniveling? And what did our wonderful Savior do with them? He gave them to us. Now we have the same power He used to send the enemy away sniveling and cowering to lick his wounds. WOO HOO!

Originally posted 2012-04-04 10:00:00.

Women and Money in the Regency

Women today have many options open to them when it comes to making a living. Just looking around my own circle of friends I see women with careers in law enforcement, in education, in psychology, in child care, and so much more. But in the Regency, the options women had for obtaining money were much more limited.

Marriage and Family

Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales

Upper-class women would usually have their expenses covered by their husbands (if they were married) or their fathers (if they still lived at home). They might even be given “pin money” to spend – money to cover clothes or other small sundry expenses. Any money a married woman had, however, belonged to her husband. There were cases where wealthy women had some of their property set aside for their exclusive use – these legal arrangements had to be made before marriage under Equity and cost a lot to arrange – but those were rare exceptions. Accepting an offer of marriage was usually a woman’s most important financial decision because she was deciding who would support her for the rest of her life.

Widows could inherit some of their husbands’ property and when their husbands died the women’s own property from before marriage would revert to them. Also, women were allowed to inherit money and property, and if they were single it would belong to them alone.


There were few respectable jobs open to upper-class women, but there were some. The most ordinary were taking care of children by becoming a teacher or a governess, or becoming a paid companion to an older woman, often a relative. Though these were respectable occupations, being forced to work was still a diminution of one’s social status.

Dorothy Jordan

A woman was more likely to be viewed at least a little askance if she became an author. Though it did not put her beyond the pale, those who did sometimes published under an alias to avoid public comment or censure. Worse yet was becoming an actress, especially as it was not at all unusual for actresses to also become either mistresses or prostitutes. One famous actress, Mrs. Jordan, became mistress to the Duke of Clarence, who later became King of England.

Women could also sometimes run or work in shops, and lower-class women often went into service, working as maids or cooks or other domestics for upper-class homes. Less respectably still, many women fed themselves through prostitution, and this was so common in Regency London that the language of the time is rife with slang terms for all the different kinds of prostitutes who made their living in the city.

Peace of Christ to you,

Jessica Snell

Originally posted 2012-04-02 10:00:00.