10 Amazing facts from the Victorian era that still stun us

10 Amazing facts from the Victorian era that still stun us


The Victorian era witnessed the reign of Queen Victoria in Britain from the period of 1837 till her demise in 1901. This era has always been known for its crazy fetishes and practices that would leave many dumbfounded. Let’s look at some of the amazing facts that would leave us stunned even today.

1 Necro-photography

Creepy as it is, this actually used to happen. The Victorians used to click pictures of the dead as if they were still alive, just before their funeral. Mothers used to pose with their dead children, and late spouses were placed in chairs next to each other as if they were still breathing- you get the picture, don’t you?


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2 The Art of Mourning

Victorians were seriously obsessed with mourning. There were industries and organizations dedicated to mourning alone- coffins, mourning clothes, mourning stationary, flowers, wreaths etc. They even had funeral biscuits! Go figure.

The Art of Mourning

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3 Pea-soupers

Victorian era was a majorly polluted era for sure. The air was covered with smoke and fog all the time. This thick fog that constantly blinded the people resembled pea soup and used to be called the same.


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4 Fetish for Freaks

It is true, that freak shows are considered to be cruel and inhuman nowadays. However, it was not so for the Victorians. They used to encourage and attend freak shows regularly.

Fetish for Freaks

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5 The Arsenic Delusion

Arsenic was considered (much wrongly of course) to be full of medicinal properties and men and women used to consume it in ample amounts. It was also used in cosmetics. People used to die off in huge numbers before they could realise the bad side of arsenic they had ingested.

The Arsenic Delusion

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6 Flash Tableaus (instead of Flash Mobs)

Apparently the Victorians were so bored with their lives that they used to dress up in strange costumes and pose for no reason. I wish I had so much free time on my hands.

Flash Tableaus

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7 “Surgery”

Not sure if it should even be called that. The so-called surgeons did not use anaesthesia for these operations, as it was not invented yet. So the victims had to go through immense pain and many used to pass out or die because of the same.


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8 Code of Conduct

You think India is conservative? During the Victorian era, a single man could address a single lady by her first name only if they were betrothed.

Code of Conduct

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9 Taxidermy

Almost to the end of the list, I am sure you will not be too surprised to read this; Victorians had a strange affiliation to taxidermy. Though they did not practice it, they collected it like there was no tomorrow.


Image Source: www.taxidermyhobbyist.com

10 Corsets

Victorians believed that tiny waists symbolized beauty and fragility, thus resulting in women getting addicted to corsets, despite the pain and extreme discomfort it caused. Women constantly used to faint because of corsets cutting off their blood circulation. But they were certainly up to date on fashion. Victorian ball gown cuts and corset designs are still sexy and in vogue!


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Having said all this, we should admit the fact that Victorians were definitely a very mysterious and interesting bunch. They were creative and always thought out of the box and got etched in History exactly for this reason.

About the author / 

Richa Dwivedi Sharma

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