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Life in the Country and Village

Life in the Victorian village and "the country" was often a very different thing from life in town -- and especially from life in London. Some writers viewed village and country life through the lens of romanticism, while others regarded their country neighbors as lacking nearly any form of civilization! The country, however, was widely regarded as an antidote to the rigours and ills of city life (it was a nice place to visit, but most urban Victorians wouldn't have wanted to live there!).


An Agricultural Village, by Mary Skene (GOP 1901)
How one village set up a program of hot lunches for schoolchildren.
Cottage Meetings, by Alice King (GOP 1885)
Cottage Bible studies.
Country vs. Town Life for Small Incomes, by Mary G. Dallington (GOP 1896)
How Two Sisters Live in the Country on a Pound a Week, by Barbara Marsh (GOP 1894)
An Independent Gentlewoman, by Maud Morrison (GOP 1893)
A peek into the life of a self-supporting country gentlewoman.
Notes from Our Village Green, by Barbara Marsh (GOP 1895)
Our Life in a Country Village: An Actual Experience (GOP 1893)
Village Bands, by Alice King (GOP 1885)
Village Homes for Ladies, by H.B.M. Buchanan (GOP 1898)
This author notes the overcrowding of London, the sparse population in the countryside, and suggests: "I have also noticed... the large number of ladies, with little or nothing to do, who become submerged in flats, boarding-houses and hotels in London. As I watch them, lost in London, with little aim in life, of no importance, position, and in many cases, of little or no value to anyone, I imagine how different their lives might be, and how much happier they might be, if, by living in the country, they tried to bring amusement, culture and life into the villages." (This does tend to suggest the notion that villages don't already have any of the above...)
Village Night Schools, by Dora Hope (GOP 1885)
What Co-Operation Did in Our Village, by Lucy Yates (GOP 1901)
How a village set up several cooperative agricultural businesses, including jam-making and flower-growing.
Winter Entertainments in Villages, by Gentianella (GOP 1883)


An Autumn Thanksgiving: The Harvest of the Sea, by Beatrice Smallfield (GOP 1895)
A sea harvest festival at St. Michaels Mount, Cornwall.
Girls Who Work in the Fields (GOP 1894)
Girls Who Work in the Fields: The Hop-Pickers (GOP 1895)


The Girl's Own Paper often ran monthly articles on nature, the changing seasons, or what was to be found in the woods and fields each month. Initially these articles were illustrated with "file" images by various artists; later series were beautifully illustrated by the author.

The Country in November: The Pine Wood (GOP 1881)
Notes... (GOP 1887, 1888)
Nature notes for the month.
Notes by an Artist-Naturalist, by Fred Miller (GOP 1891, 1892)
Beautifully illustrated monthly observations on nature.
Notes by an Artist-Naturalist, by Fred Miller (GOP 1894)
The beautifully illustrated series continues.
The Observer (GOP 1884)
A monthly guide to nature observations.
Spring Memories, by Clotilda Marson (GOP 1898)
The Summer Sun, by Clotilda Marson (GOP 1898)
The Wealth of a Wood in July, by Maude Morrison (GOP 1893)
Winter's First Footsteps, by Clotilda Marson (GOP 1898)

Copyright © 2018 by
Moira Allen.
All rights reserved.

Magazine Abbreviations:
CFM = Cassell's Family Magazine GOP = Girl's Own Paper ILA = Illustrated London Almanack S = The Strand
AM = Atlantic Monthly C = Century Magazine D = Demorest's Monthly Magazine G = Godey's Lady's Book H = Harper's Monthly
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