Friday Fun Victorian Style

One of the ways I create a period feel in my stories set in the Victorian era is to use dated terms as often as I can. They have richness and flavor.

For example, doesn’t addlepated have far more personality than just plain crazy?

Readers of Victorian-era stories learn a new vocabulary, which can be lots of fun.

I’m going to let you in on some of that fun.

Below are the modern terms for three items. Your task is to figure out the older word(s) for the same items. To make it a little easier, I’ll indicate how many letters are in the alternate words and fill in R, S, T, L, N, and E like they do on Wheel of Fortune.

Leave your answers in a comment, numbering them as I have.

1. suspenders

__  R  __  __  E S

2. purse

R  E  T  __  __  __  L  E

3. binoculars

__  __  E  L  __       __  L  __  S  S  E  S

• • •

I’ll update the post over the weekend to include the answers, so you could check back Monday. I’ll also provide a link to this post at the end of next Friday’s quiz. If you view that post, you’ll be able to click the link and see what the dated terms for the items are.

• • •

Update and Answers

A number of those who left comments got the right answers. Congratulations!

1. braces

2. reticule

3. field glasses

• • •

I’ve updated the Friday Fun post from last week. Click this link to see the answer.

• • •

The royalty-free photographs above are from either Victorian Goods and Merchandise or from Victorian Fashions, each a book and CD-ROM of electronic clip art published by Dover Publications and are used in this post by permission granted a buyer of the book.


About Keli Gwyn

I'm an award-winning author of inspirational historical romance smitten with the Victorian Era. I'm currently writing for Harlequin's Love Inspired Historical line of wholesome, faith-filled romances. My debut novel, A Bride Opens Shop in El Dorado, California, was released July 1, 2012. I'm represented by Rachelle Gardner of Book & Such Literary. I live in a Gold Rush-era town at the foot of the majestic Sierras. My favorite places to visit are my fictional worlds, other Gold Country towns and historical museums. When I'm not writing I enjoy taking walks, working out at Curves™ and reading.
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22 Responses to Friday Fun Victorian Style

  1. Oh I have no clue. I’m a little addlepatted just trying to conjure up letters for a guess.

  2. Sandra Orchard says:

    1. braces (my mom always called them that!)
    2. reticule
    3. field glasses


  3. I’m at a total loss, so this ought to give you a good laugh.

    Trouser holders, handbag, long distance spectacles! LOL Too fun!

  4. This morning I have a couple minutes to myself before the crew is up and about. When I opened my inbox I had six blog emails, but I went to yours first since Friday Fun Victorian Style is my favorite! This one is hard… hmmm….
    1. I have no idea – I’m going to have to google this one for myself after I log off or it will boggle my mind.
    2. Reticule
    3. (depending on where they are used) Opera Glasses?
    Thanks, Keli!

  5. Lindsay Harrel says:

    I don’t have time to play right now, but look forward to the answers! Love your creativity, Keli. 🙂

  6. Donna Pyle says:

    I have zero clue, but looking forward to seeing the answers!

  7. Melissa Tagg says:

    Hey Keli, I love coming to your blog! I’m about two seconds from walking into a meeting, so I can’t guess now, but I’m looking forward to the answers!

  8. wendypainemiller says:

    1. strapper dappers
    2. tissue holders
    3. vision lookers

    Oh man, can you tell I need more tea?
    ~ Wendy

  9. Beth K. Vogt says:

    Up late too many nights this week, so I can only come up with #2, which I believe is “reticule.”

  10. Loree Huebner says:

    Snaps or Braces
    Field Glasses

  11. steelergirl83 says:

    This game would be easier if I knew how to spell… 😛

  12. duhpaynes says:

    I’m not even going to list my guesses because I already see them listed several times but it’s still fun to read all the answers! Thanks for another Fun Friday 🙂

  13. Oh my, this is hard, Keli! Can you fill in a few of the letters so it’s like Wheel of Fortune? 🙂

  14. Keli, I could not allow myself to cheat and I think someone guessed the correct words. Honestly, I have no clue. I await your answers 🙂 Yes, another great Victorian Friday !!

  15. Keli Gwyn says:

    I’m sorry this guessing game was tough. My apologies. I like Sarah Forgrave’s suggestion of giving you a few of the letters Wheel-of-Fortune style. I’ve added R, S, T, L, N, and E. Hope that helps.

  16. thanks to the wheel of fortune letters, i think i’ll go with:

    1. braces
    2. reticule (the only one i knew off the top of my head)
    3. field glasses (the glasses part was easier….)

  17. Marji Laine says:

    I know the purse was a reticule and the binoculars were field glasses, but I have no clue about the suspenders. Fun post!

  18. Oh that’s better! I can figure out one of them now. 🙂 I think #2 is reticule, right? And the third one is something with “glasses”. I’ll go with Jeannie’s answer of field glasses.

  19. I knew the reticule because I have a couple of my great grandmothers. No idea on the other two. I am failing these. As always, a great post. 🙂

  20. Keli Gwyn says:

    Thanks to everyone who visited the post. A number of those who left comments got the right answers. Congratulations!

    1. braces
    2. reticule
    3. field glasses

  21. Pingback: Friday Fun California Style | Keli Gwyn's Blog

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