The Gorgeous Georgians!

Listed on April 16, 2014 in Blogs!


Anne SpekeThe Georgians seem to be the BBC’s flavour of the month with programmes across the radio and television celebrating the arrival of the Hanoverians on the English throne in 1714. BBC4’s programmes with Suzy Klein – Rule Britannia! – very much focusing on music. The episodes are very uneven with some rather trite content and a whole load of unnecessary hype such as claims that they gave us the first celebrity culture etc. Well, I suppose that depended on where you lived and what your station in life was. That’s very much glossed over. The music is really good with some unusual contributions beyond the shadow of Mr Handel. Far more engaging and erudite is Amanda Vickery’s series also on BBC4. Last night she presented a fascinating glimpse at how homemaking was central to the making of marriages and how for men, the making of a home was crucial to their success at becoming a gentleman both in the suitor stakes and in society more generally. The thesis demolished the myth that the household was the preserve of the woman alone although, of course, women did bring something to the party when they took charge of its management. Interesting was the situation for men and women when advantageous marriages did not take place for whatever reason. I liked the story of the lone bachelor who would continue to drink out of pewter because a wife hadn’t introduced porcelain to the house. Poor thing. Do catch these programmes if you can or watch them using the iPlayer facility. The Radio Times will give you all the detailed timings.