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Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Lady's Monthly Museum

What might Jane Austen have been reading to while away a dull moment? We know she enjoyed novel reading. Regency ladies also had magazines specially written for them.
The Lady’s Monthly Museum (LMM), first published in 1798, was written and edited by a ‘Society of Ladies.’ A ‘Polite Repository of Amusement and Instruction,’ it aimed to ‘please the Fancy, interest the Mind, or exalt the Character of the British Fair.’
The magazine contained moral essays and biographical pieces on famous women such as the actress Dorothy Jordan; it even had an agony aunt. And, of course, the LMM contained fashion plates with the latest modes. You can find out more about the LMM and its fair rivals in my latest feature for Jane Austen's Regency World.
Images: Dorothy Jordan, mistress of the Duke of Clarence (the future William IV) as featured in the Lady’s Monthly Museum for January 1805.

‘Cabinet of Fashion’ fashion plate for Lady’s Monthly Museum, June 1805: Morning dress of cambric muslin with spencer cloak of blue silk. Full dress of straw-coloured sarsenet (sic) with a tunic of rich embroidered white crape. Hair dressed with ‘Diamonds set on Velvet, with a profusion of White Ostrich Feathers.’ Author's Collection.

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