Tuesday, November 25, 2008

How old are you?

This was the question on my mind yesterday, as I avid read Mrs Beeton's tips and suggestions on The Art of Cookery, The Cook, The Kitchen, The Housewife, Marketing and Labour-Saving In the Home.

Mrs Beeton's first book was published in 1861. My copy is definitely not that old, plus All About Cookery is a derivative edition taken out of her Household Management book.

The front cover is olive green, with black writing, a sort of Art Deco column design with 3 stalks of embossed wheat. From my search of Google, it appears that this is a 1923 edition. These two copies look and sound very similar: http://biblion.co.uk/books/12178276.html, http://biblion.co.uk/books/3898796.html.
Furthermore, the frequent references to the War, and the difficulty in obtaining household staff (as if having a maid, a cook and a porter were the most ordinary things in the world) suggested post-WWI.

So the next question is - where was it between 1923 and the Christmas in the late-40's when it was given to my nana? Was it given as a serious handbook for a new housewife? Or in jest, by Uncle Albert as a sly dig at my Nana's skills? Or as a gift of something Aunt Blank had used and found to be very useful?
I guess I will never know for sure as my Nana passed away a few years ago, and Grandad doesn't know very much about it.

1 comment:

atomicliving said...

ask your grandad if they had a housemaid, cook, or kitchen maid, maybe that would tell u if it was in jest or help.