period drama

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pages: 144 words: 33,034

Hosting an Elegant Dinner Party: The Surgeon in the Kitchen by Adam Frosh

haute cuisine, period drama

It is perhaps this drift from convention, which has created a resurgence in interest in texts such as Noblesse Oblige, or Judith Martin’s Miss Manners’ Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior. We marvel at the stunningly produced televised period dramas and movies. How many of us have not imagined ourselves dressed in the period style, sitting at those grand dinner tables adorned with full silver service as we are waited upon by an attentive footman in livery? Of course, such functions were always the preserve of the society elite. However, our modern-day standard of living has improved to such an extent that fine food at least is now open to a much wider spread of people in the many excellent restaurants around the world. Many of these restaurants serve dishes to such a high standard that they would have astounded those very elite classes portrayed in television period dramas. Elegant dining is without doubt a fun experience. It is both a privilege and a joy to entertain our guests.

As the reader becomes more confident with the recipes, they can prepare two or three courses perhaps for the family or as an informal dinner party for guests. I strongly recommend the reader has practised the recipes well before contemplating entertaining ten people for a seven-course sit-down banquet. Once sufficient confidence has been reached, however, the reader will be able to create dining experience with the finest of dishes and an ambience to match any period drama. I have constructed the dishes in the menus in a way that creates a good variety of food experiences throughout the meal while avoiding flavour repetition. The menus have been themed so as to build up to the main course as the crowning piece in the meal. There is however, nothing to stop the reader swapping dishes from other menus. The recipes use ingredients that are readily available in most local shops and supermarkets.


pages: 676 words: 203,386

The Platinum Age of Television: From I Love Lucy to the Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific by David Bianculli

affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Alistair Cooke, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, cuban missile crisis, desegregation, Donald Trump, Downton Abbey, feminist movement, friendly fire, global village, Mark Zuckerberg, medical residency, period drama, pre–internet, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, Steve Jobs, trickle-down economics, unpaid internship

But in the field of drama, that doesn’t account for everything, and there are shows, whether they be family dramas, shows examining occupations less commonly dramatized on TV, or just defiantly unclassifiable ones, that elude the dominant classifications. Every decade starting with the 1960s has them, and some are exceptional exceptions indeed. CBS’s East Side/West Side (1963–64) starred George C. Scott as a committed social worker dealing with the New York slums. Period dramas looked at family life in CBS’s Waltons (1971–81) and racism in NBC’s I’ll Fly Away (1991–93). Modern family dramas about everyday life were depicted, using very different approaches in different decades, in ABC’s Family (1976–80), ABC’s thirtysomething (1987–91), ABC’s Life Goes On (1989–93), NBC’s Friday Night Lights (2006–11), and NBC’s Parenthood (2010–15). Of those, thirtysomething, Friday Night Lights, and Parenthood were all superlative, as were three other dramas, over the years, that stand out more or less alone.

Mad Men, which premiered on AMC in 2007, dealt with race too, but seldom overtly, and never as the single focus of an episode. On Matthew Weiner’s Mad Men, set against the world of Madison Avenue advertising, people were glib and gifted at speaking in flowery and seductive tones and phrases, but rarely, if ever, did they expose themselves by telling the truth or revealing their true thoughts and desires. And when they did, in this repressed era of the 1950s and 1960s, things seldom went well. Mad Men was a period drama about Madison Avenue advertising agency owners and employees, centering on Don Draper (played by Jon Hamm) as an inventive ad agency executive with a gift for reinvention, as in the show’s famous finale. The central character of Mad Men was Jon Hamm’s Don Draper, a man so adept at creating alluring advertising slogans and campaigns that he had once sold himself as a complete, and completely false, bill of goods.

“At that point,” Weiner says of his own TV career, not Danson’s, “you’re just trying to get a job. And to get on a Paramount show with Ted Danson in it, that has an order—that was a big job. I wouldn’t say I was drawn to it. I would say that that was my profession.” Weiner stayed with Becker for three years and, during one of the hiatus periods, wrote the pilot episode for what would become, many years later, Mad Men. When he described the concept to people in advance—a period drama series based in the world of 1960s Madison Avenue—even his friends either balked or said it was “execution dependent.” So Weiner figured he had to write it, and did. “I just pulled the trigger and wrote the pilot, gave it to my agents,” Weiner says, “and nothing happened. I couldn’t get a meeting.” Weiner begged to get just a pitch meeting with HBO, where he could “leave the script as a surprise at the end,” but no luck.


A United Ireland: Why Unification Is Inevitable and How It Will Come About by Kevin Meagher

Boris Johnson, British Empire, Celtic Tiger, cognitive dissonance, colonial rule, deindustrialization, knowledge economy, kremlinology, land reform, Nelson Mandela, period drama, Right to Buy, trade route, transaction costs

The film depicts the activities of a ‘flying column’ of young IRA activists in County Cork during the ‘War of Independence’ against British rule, focusing on the eventual split between pragmatists and purists over the treaty signed with Britain that paved the way for the creation of the Irish Free State, but which also led to the partition of the country, fuelling the subsequent Irish Civil War of 1922–23. To the Irish, the events of those tumultuous years are second nature. Michael Collins. The Black and Tans. De Valera. The War of Independence. Partition. But, to most people in this country, all this represents a secret history. It is not taught in our schools or depicted on our televisions. The Irish state broadcaster RTE commissioned a landmark period drama, Rebellion, about the Easter Rising in 1916, yet it did not air on British terrestrial television, despite the events being just as much part of the warp and weft of British history. If, indeed, there is a single difference between the Irish and the English, it comes down to understanding why the Brits are always cast as villains in Hollywood blockbusters. The English are puzzled and a little bit hurt at the constant depiction of their countrymen as scoundrels and heartless murderers.


pages: 255 words: 77,849

Is It Just Me? by Miranda Hart

banking crisis, Bob Geldof, Donald Trump, ghettoisation, Live Aid, mail merge, period drama, Rubik’s Cube, wage slave

GAJ looking at her watch to help her decide if she wants a cup of tea. SO ANNOYING. Do you want one or not? It doesn’t matter what time it is. (This last one is big enough for . . .) 9. AND 10. Accidentally ending up watching a television sex scene with Mum and Dad. Oh, no, don’t worry: we have found a way around that one. It goes like this: MIRANDA, her MOTHER and FATHER on sofa, watching television. The nice BBC Period Drama has suddenly become unexpectedly racy. MOTHER: Oh. Right. I see. (PAUSE) SO! I thought we could all go on a lovely Boxing Day walk tomorrow. ME: Yes! Lovely! Do show me the route. MOTHER whips open the Ordnance Survey map. Shows MIRANDA the walk. Wild humping and groaning noises from the television. MOTHER: I thought this would be lovely. Such views! DAD: Oh, yes, lovely. MIRANDA: Oh, yes, lovely.


pages: 235 words: 74,200

We're Going to Need More Wine: Stories That Are Funny, Complicated, and True by Gabrielle Union

double helix, equal pay for equal work, jitney, old-boy network, period drama, pre–internet, Snapchat, women in the workforce

I was her friend, but for much of the school year, it was like being friends with a leper. Nobody else got her period for the longest time, but soon enough all the girls in fifth grade became familiar with Melody’s month-to-month schedule, and when she was absent, we spoke gravely of her condition, dramatically shushing each other when a boy came within hearing range. By seventh grade, Melody was no longer alone in her period drama, as all of us were getting picked off like flies. One of our friends would stay home from school or race to the nurse’s office, and then we would know: “It came for her.” No one I knew was excited about it. You looked forward to it the way you looked forward to food poisoning. I knew that at any moment, it would be my turn to stand up and everyone would point in my direction. I remember we all wore dark colors in case it happened.


pages: 270 words: 79,992

The End of Big: How the Internet Makes David the New Goliath by Nicco Mele

4chan, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, barriers to entry, Berlin Wall, big-box store, bitcoin, business climate, call centre, Cass Sunstein, centralized clearinghouse, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, cloud computing, collaborative consumption, collaborative editing, commoditize, creative destruction, crony capitalism, cross-subsidies, crowdsourcing, David Brooks, death of newspapers, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, en.wikipedia.org, Exxon Valdez, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Filter Bubble, Firefox, global supply chain, Google Chrome, Gordon Gekko, Hacker Ethic, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, Lean Startup, Mark Zuckerberg, minimum viable product, Mitch Kapor, Mohammed Bouazizi, Mother of all demos, Narrative Science, new economy, Occupy movement, old-boy network, peer-to-peer, period drama, Peter Thiel, pirate software, publication bias, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Ronald Reagan: Tear down this wall, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, social web, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, Stuxnet, Ted Nelson, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telemarketer, The Wisdom of Crowds, transaction costs, uranium enrichment, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, Zipcar

A single episode of the hit AMC cable show Mad Men costs approximately $2.3 million to produce.23 That cost makes good business sense for AMC, thanks to advertising and cable fees.24 To date, we simply haven’t seen an online video with the production quality, appeal, and intensity of popular television hits or blockbuster movies. Popular online shows like the Shaytards do enjoy large followings, but they lack the gripping appeal of a period drama like Mad Men—a production arguably too expensive for the economic dynamics of YouTube. The one entertainment genre that remains stubbornly in the age of big media is sports. No substitute exists for watching a live major league sports game on television or, even better, in person. The giant reach of professional sports shows no signs of slowing down or submitting to the audience fragmentation and revenue shrinkage other entertainment has seen.


pages: 315 words: 81,433

A Life Less Throwaway: The Lost Art of Buying for Life by Tara Button

clean water, collaborative consumption, David Attenborough, delayed gratification, Downton Abbey, hedonic treadmill, Internet of things, Kickstarter, life extension, Mark Zuckerberg, Mason jar, meta analysis, meta-analysis, period drama, Rana Plaza, Stanford marshmallow experiment, Steve Jobs, thinkpad

* * * exercise THE COMMON THREADS OF TASTE To prevent regret and wasteful rebuying due to changes in taste, look at how your tastes have changed over the last ten years and see if there is anything that has stayed constant. In particular, look at: •colours, textures and patterns – e.g., I love eggshell blue, bare wood and lace, and am not so keen on plastic. •styles – e.g., I love period houses, carved furniture, wrap dresses and retro appliances. •cultural influences – e.g., I’ve faithfully loved Audrey Hepburn, period dramas, shabby chic and café culture for the last fifteen years. This exercise should help you be more mindful of your tastes while purchasing. If you can keep your main pieces in line with your more stable preferences, then, if you’re really desperate to make a change, you can use smaller pieces to reflect your more ‘of the moment’ tastes. * * * BRAND VALUES – CAN BRANDS HELP US IN MINDFUL CURATION?


pages: 281 words: 79,464

Against Empathy: The Case for Rational Compassion by Paul Bloom

affirmative action, Albert Einstein, Asperger Syndrome, Atul Gawande, Columbine, David Brooks, Donald Trump, effective altruism, Ferguson, Missouri, impulse control, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Paul Erdős, period drama, Peter Singer: altruism, publication bias, Ralph Waldo Emerson, replication crisis, Ronald Reagan, social intelligence, Stanford marshmallow experiment, Steven Pinker, theory of mind, Walter Mischel, Yogi Berra

Indeed, many scholars have argued that empathy itself has evolved for the purpose of parenting—in particular, to guide the mother and child to establish a synchrony so that they come to feel one another’s experiences, allowing the mother to better take care of the child. What role, then, does empathy play in good parenting? An obvious starting point here is that good parents understand and love their children. (This has to be the most banal sentence of this book.) Nobody wants to parent like Betty Draper, a character in the period drama Mad Men. Child: “I’m bored.” Betty: “Go bang your head against the wall.” Child: “Mom?” Betty: “Only boring people get bored.” But good parenting also requires an appreciation that the long-term goals of a child do not always correspond to his or her short-term wants. My worst moments as a father aren’t when I don’t care; they’re when I care too much, when I cannot disengage from my children’s frustration or pain.


pages: 335 words: 95,549

Confessions of a Bookseller by Shaun Bythell

Airbnb, British Empire, cashless society, credit crunch, Donald Trump, mail merge, period drama, Skype, zero day

There was a dusting of snow on the ground and the snowdrop flowers were hanging over it, with the wild garlic poking through in patches. Anna is particularly fond of this garden. It was one of the first places we went together when she came here from LA seven years ago. I think the juxtaposition of a beautiful garden and a stunning beach appeals to her filmic imagination. She is a film-maker by trade, and whenever we’re here, I can see her face change, and I know that in her head she’s directing a period drama set in this place. Email from Anna Dreda reminding me that her Readers’ Group is coming up next Sunday. I’ve offered them the use of the shop and the big room for the week, as February is so quiet it might as well be used. Anna has a bookshop in Much Wenlock in Shropshire, and stayed with me last year with her partner, Hilary, on their way home from a holiday in the Western Isles. Till Total £349.48 15 Customers SUNDAY, 8 FEBRUARY Online orders: Orders found: Today was Anna’s last day before returning to America, so we went to visit Jessie, who runs the Picture Shop in Wigtown.


The Rough Guide to England by Rough Guides

active transport: walking or cycling, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, bike sharing scheme, Bob Geldof, Boris Johnson, British Empire, car-free, Columbine, congestion charging, Corn Laws, deindustrialization, Downton Abbey, Edmond Halley, Etonian, food miles, haute cuisine, housing crisis, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, Kickstarter, low cost airline, Neil Kinnock, offshore financial centre, period drama, plutocrats, Plutocrats, the market place, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, University of East Anglia, upwardly mobile, urban sprawl

£120 The Real Downton Abbey Tucked away in the northern reaches of Hampshire, twenty miles north of Winchester, Highclere Castle (9.30am–5pm: Easter, early April & May bank hol weekends daily, mid-July to mid-Sept Mon–Thurs & Sun; castle, exhibition and gardens £22, castle and gardens £15, gardens £7; 01635 253210, highclerecastle.co.uk) will be very familiar to fans of ITV’s hit period drama, Downton Abbey, which was filmed here. Home to Lord Carnarvon and his family, the house is approached via a long drive that winds through a stunning 5000-acre estate, and is surrounded by beautiful gardens designed by Capability Brown. Inside the house, Downton Abbey aficionados will enjoy loitering in the Drawing Room and the Library, scene of many a drama and quivering stiff-upper-lip of Lord Grantham and his family, while upstairs you can peer into the bedrooms of the Crawley girls.

The town survived the collapse of the wool trade, prospering as an inland port after the Welland was made navigable to the sea in 1570, and, in the eighteenth century, as a staging point on the Great North Road from London. More recently, Stamford escaped the three main threats to old English towns – the Industrial Revolution, wartime bombing and postwar development – and was designated the country’s first Conservation Area in 1967. Thanks to this, its unspoilt streets readily lend themselves to period drama and filmmaking, and although it’s the harmony of Stamford’s architecture that pleases rather than any specific sight, there are still a handful of buildings of some special interest as well as an especially charming High Street. Church of All Saints All Saints’ Place, PE9 2AG • Mon–Sat 9am–5pm, Sun 9am–7pm • Free • stamfordallsaints.org.uk A convenient place to start an exploration of Stamford, the Church of All Saints stands at the western end of the town centre, its beautiful facade a happy amalgamation of Early English and Perpendicular.

The infernal political machinations of a snarling Ian McKellen as Richard are heightened by Nazi associ­ations, and the style of the period imbues the film with the requisite glamour, as does languorously drugged Kristin Scott-Thomas as Lady Anne. Secrets and Lies (Mike Leigh, 1996). Serious-minded, slice-of-life ensemble drama charting a dysfunctional family’s hidden secrets, from infidelity to reconciliation – and all seen through the prism of class. Mike Leigh at his most penetrating. Sense and Sensibility (Ang Lee, 1995). Ah, the English and their period dramas. They are all here – Rickman, Winslett, Thompson, Grant, Robert Hardy et al – in this tone-perfect re-creation of Jane Austen’s sprightly story of love, money and, of course, manners. Trainspotting (Danny Boyle, 1996). High-octane dip into the heroin-scarred world of a group of young Scotsmen both at home and in London; includes what must be the best cinematic representation of a heroin fix ever.


pages: 331 words: 98,395

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Broken windows theory, Panamax, period drama

An older picture that she’d found in an attic stuffed with three decades’ worth of gossip magazines, taken before she was born: Arthur with his arm around the pale girl with dark curls who would soon become his first wife, caught by a photographer as they stepped out of a restaurant, the girl inscrutable behind sunglasses and Arthur blinded by the flash. 13 THE PHOTO FROM THE TABLOID: Ten minutes before the photograph, Arthur Leander and the girl are waiting by the coat check in a restaurant in Toronto. This is well before the Georgia Flu. Civilization won’t collapse for another fourteen years. Arthur has been filming a period drama all week, partly on a soundstage and partly in a park on the edge of the city. Earlier in the day he was wearing a crown, but now he’s wearing a Toronto Blue Jays cap that makes him look very ordinary. He is thirty-six years old. “What are you going to do?” he asks. “I’m going to leave him.” The girl, Miranda, has a recent bruise on her face. They’re speaking in whispers to avoid being overheard by the restaurant staff.


The Paths Between Worlds: This Alien Earth Book One by Paul Antony Jones

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, megastructure, period drama

I struck out for the beach, trying to conserve my dwindling energy. Others did the same, and by the time I pulled myself up onto the stony shore, shivering with the cold, arm and leg muscles spasming, twelve people had made it there before me. Eight men, the rest women, all with the same wide-eyed look of confusion in their eyes. One woman looked as though she’d stepped out of an eighteenth-century period drama, her long dress clinging to her body. Her auburn hair had been tied back in a bow, but it had come half-undone and flopped over her face. Another, a man this time, was dressed in robes, or maybe it was a toga. Another wore an expensive looking suit, and another some kind of military uniform. Others looked to be dressed in similar attire to my sweat-shirt and jeans, but there was something about the style that seemed dated to me, though I couldn’t put my finger on exactly why.


pages: 323 words: 107,963

Ask Me About My Uterus: A Quest to Make Doctors Believe in Women's Pain by Abby Norman

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, complexity theory, correlation does not imply causation, double helix, Downton Abbey, feminist movement, financial independence, Kickstarter, period drama, phenotype, Saturday Night Live, the scientific method, women in the workforce

Once medical science discovered and began to actively crusade against transmissible infection, childbed fever all but evaporated. But there were still risks to childbirth, many of which were silent and pernicious. Eclampsia, a dangerous rise in blood pressure, can cause fatal seizures after a baby is born and may come on quite suddenly. The youngest daughter of the Crawley family on the beloved period drama Downton Abbey died of this when the two male doctors who were charged with treating her couldn’t agree on her course of treatment: a storyline that, unfortunately, is based on fact. Of course, for the vast majority of human history, women gave birth virtually anywhere but in a hospital: at home, at work in the fields, in a hut or a cave—and certainly these places weren’t the most sterile and safe environments.


pages: 385 words: 119,859

This Is London: Life and Death in the World City by Ben Judah

British Empire, deindustrialization, eurozone crisis, high net worth, illegal immigration, mass immigration, multicultural london english, out of africa, period drama, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Skype, white flight, young professional

They’ve got extensive information on them. And they know how to reel them in. ‘That’s how I met Lucifer. That old smoke was a right bastard . . . some fat piece of shit . . . And I’m sixteen, I’m hungry, I’m in London . . . and I want London . . . I want to look fresh, I want to dizzle dem bitches, I want fine wines in Kensington Roof Gardens . . . not hanging out with a Pepsi down KFC.’ Moses was watching TV. They loved period dramas in London. They loved people dressing up and living like it was the old days. And Moses would be thinking, Shit. That’s how I was living four years ago. He would blink: and remember Gun Battle. His grandfather’s shack. Even them oil lamps they had when he was really small. Back when the only TV was the one up in the corner in the local wooden store. ‘Back in Grenada, we was living 1,000 per cent in the same ways as when they freed the slaves . . .


pages: 516 words: 128,667

Up and Down Stairs: The History of the Country House Servant by Jeremy Musson

clean water, invention of the telegraph, job satisfaction, period drama

He worked for more than twenty-five masters, for varying intervals, relishing his independence and the mobility of his profession – although his initial training was in a country house in the early part of the century.5 This is a flesh and blood tale, in which Macdonald displays his vanity, admits his own faults and forgives those of others with admirable equanimity. Servants were not just items in the account books, any more than the aristocracy and gentry that they worked for were as one-dimensional as their posed portraits might suggest, or as vacuous, haughty and thoughtless as characterisations in period drama would have us believe. Mr Macdonald’s memoir begins with a childhood pitched into destitution that segues into a long and relatively rewarding career in domestic service. From the lowly position of postilion and footman, he rose to become valet and manservant to numerous gentlemen, particularly when on their travels. He was clearly talented as a barber and a cook, judging by his ability to secure a place when he needed one.


pages: 416 words: 121,024

How to Murder Your Life: A Memoir by Cat Marnell

Berlin Wall, carbon footprint, East Village, Frank Gehry, impulse control, Joan Didion, Norman Mailer, period drama, pez dispenser, Rosa Parks, urban decay, walkable city, Wall-E, Zipcar

There were hunks of crystal everywhere, and exotic fashion magazines and books like Keith Richards’s Life. I couldn’t believe I was there. Courtney wasn’t home yet, so we talked to Hershey, one of the two housekeepers she’d poached from the Mercer Hotel. She told us Courtney loved avocados. Wow! So did I! And then . . . Courtney swept into the room like fucking Hedda Gabler or something! She was dressed “period drama” in a long skirt that sort of swooshed everywhere, low heels, and a high-necked sheer blouse. She was braless (swag), with cool blond highlights. Her pale, perfect skin looked even more expensive than her living room. I nudged my filthy Gucci tote behind the sofa with my foot. The next two hours were . . . how do I even put it? I have no words. Courtney talked and talked and sipped her cappuccino and lit cigarettes and talked and talked.


England by David Else

active transport: walking or cycling, Albert Einstein, back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, Boris Johnson, British Empire, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, colonial rule, Columbine, congestion charging, David Attenborough, David Brooks, Etonian, food miles, glass ceiling, haute cuisine, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Kickstarter, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, Nelson Mandela, new economy, New Urbanism, out of africa, period drama, place-making, sceptred isle, Skype, Sloane Ranger, South of Market, San Francisco, Stephen Hawking, the market place, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, unbiased observer, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Winter of Discontent

In Holy Trinity Chapel is the tomb of Ettricke, the ‘man in the wall’, a local eccentric who refused to be buried in the church or village and was instead interred in the church wall. Above the choir vestry is the famous chained library ( 10.30am-12.30pm & 2-4pm Mon-Fri Easter-Oct). Established in 1686, it’s filled with some of the country’s oldest medieval books, 12th-century manuscripts written on lambskin, and ancient recipes, including ones for making ink out of oak apples. KINGSTON LACY Looking every inch the setting for a period drama, Kingston Lacy (NT; 01202-883402; house & grounds adult/child £10/5, grounds only £5/2.50; house 11am-4pm Wed-Sun Mar-Oct) became home to the aristocratic Bankes family when they were evicted from Corfe Castle Click here by the Roundheads. This grand, 17th-century country mansion was later clad in stone by Charles Barry, architect of the Houses of Parliament Click here, but it’s best known for its resplendent Spanish Room, which is hung with gilded leather.

Here too is one of her sparkly evening gowns and famous handbags, as well as displays on Sir Isaac Newton. You can easily spot the part 13th-, part 16th-century parish church of St Wulfram’s ( 9am-4pm Mon-Sat Apr-Sep, to 12.30pm Mon-Fri, 10am-1pm Sat Oct-Mar) thanks to its pin-sharp 85m spire. It has an interesting crypt chapel, and hidden up a steep stairwell is a 16th-century chained library where a young Newton once pored over his studies. A dream location for English period dramas (several have been filmed here), serene Restoration country mansion, Belton House (NT; 01476-566116; A607; adult/under 16yr £9.50/5.50, grounds only £7.50/4.50; 12.30-5pm Wed-Sun Apr-Oct), stands in a 400-hectare park 3 miles northeast of Grantham. Built in 1688 for Sir John Brownlow, it shelters some astonishingly ornate woodcarvings attributed to the master Dutch carver Grinling Gibbons. In the beautiful gardens is a sundial made famous in Helen Cresswell’s children’s classic Moondial.

Direct trains run from London King’s Cross to Grantham (£28.20, 1¼ hours, twice hourly). Stamford pop 19,525 This handsome town has a sunny disposition all year round thanks to the warm honey-coloured Lincolnshire limestone of its buildings. Nestling against the River Welland and a lush waterside park, handsome Stamford’s tangle of streets are bursting with fine medieval and Georgian constructions. And if you feel as though you’re walking through a period drama, there’s a reason: Stamford has been used as a set for more drama productions than you can shake a clapperboard at. * * * A TALE OF LITTLE & LARGE Stamford guides are fond of telling the story of the unfortunate Daniel Lambert, who was born a healthy baby in 1770, but who soon began to tip the scales at ever more alarming totals. Despite just eating one meal per day, he ballooned to an astounding 336kg and was hailed by contemporaries as ‘the most corpulent man of whom authentic record exists’.


pages: 457 words: 128,640

Servants: A Downstairs History of Britain From the Nineteenth Century to Modern Times by Lucy Lethbridge

Ada Lovelace, British Empire, decarbonisation, garden city movement, high net worth, invisible hand, Louis Pasteur, new economy, period drama, Ralph Waldo Emerson, social web, Thorstein Veblen, traveling salesman, women in the workforce

Arthur Inch (later to be technical advisor on Robert Altman’s film Gosford Park) produced Dinner is Served. And Eileen Balderson, one of the few women servant memoirists who seemed genuinely to have revelled in life as a country house domestic, came out of retirement in 1982 to pen Backstairs Life in a Country House, with a co-writer who remembered that she was ‘passionately determined to get it right’ after noticing all the errors made by television period dramas. Other former servants noted how such dramas often got the smallest details wrong. An Oxfordshire woman who had been a maid between the wars found costume designers overly keen on elaborate, beribboned headwear: ‘Oh no, we didn’t have those flowing things – that’s only on the television.’2 No contemporary cultural phenomenon, however, has laid the template of our idea of below-stairs life quite so completely as the ITV television series Upstairs, Downstairs, which, over four years (1971–5), and sixty-eight episodes, reached an estimated one billion viewers worldwide.


pages: 453 words: 130,632

Nine Pints: A Journey Through the Money, Medicine, and Mysteries of Blood by Rose George

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, air freight, airport security, British Empire, call centre, corporate social responsibility, Edward Snowden, global pandemic, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, index card, Jeff Bezos, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, Nelson Mandela, obamacare, period drama, Peter Thiel, Rana Plaza, RAND corporation, Silicon Valley, Skype, stem cell

Although nearly half the women said that they would feel embarrassed discussing periods with their dads, only 9 percent of men said they would feel uncomfortable discussing periods with their daughters. ActionAid blog, “1 in 4 Women Don’t Understand Their Menstrual Cycle,” May 23, 2017, www.actionaid.org.uk/blog/news/2017/05/24/1-in-4-uk-women-dont-understand-their-menstrual-cycle.   46. WaterAid Australia, WaterAid blog, “Leaks, Cramps and Cravings: Majority of Women Adapt Their Lifestyle Because of a Fear of ‘Period Dramas,’” May 25, 2016, www.wateraid.org/au/articles/leaks-cramps-and-cravings-majority-of-women-adapt-their-lifestyle-because-of-a-fear-of. Also Rose George, “My Gold Medal Goes to Fu Yuanhui for Talking Openly About Her Period,” Guardian, August 16, 2016.   47. Frank Bures, The Geography of Madness: Penis Thieves, Voodoo Death, and the Search for the Meaning of the World’s Strangest Syndromes (Brooklyn, NY: Melville House, 2016), 39.   48. 


pages: 874 words: 154,810

Lonely Planet Florence & Tuscany by Lonely Planet, Virginia Maxwell, Nicola Williams

Bonfire of the Vanities, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, centre right, Costa Concordia, G4S, haute couture, Kickstarter, period drama, post-work, Skype, trade route

ON LOCATION IN TUSCANY Tuscany has been a popular location for international film and TV shoots, including the following: » The English Patient (Anthony Minghella; 1996) Includes scenes shot in a monastery outside Pienza but is predominantly remembered for its lyrically beautiful sequence when Kip (Naveen Andrews) takes Hana (Juliette Binoche) into Arezzo’s Cappella Bacci and hoists her aloft on ropes so that she can see Piero della Francesa’s frescoes by the light of a flare. » Gladiator (Ridley Scott; 2000) Those glorious shots of fields of wheat rippling in the breeze were shot near Pienza. » Hannibal (Ridley Scott; 2001) Parts of the sequel to The Silence of the Lambs were shot in Florence. » Miracle at St Anna (Spike Lee; 2008) Based on James McBride’s novel about four black American soldiers who get trapped in a Tuscan village near Lucca during WWII. » Much Ado about Nothing (Kenneth Branagh; 1993) Branagh, Emma Thompson and Keanu Reeves star in this adaptation of Shakespeare’s comedy; shot in Chianti. » New Moon (Chris Weitz; 2009) Parts of the second film in the Twilight trilogy were shot in Montepulciano’s main piazza, despite the fact that in the book the action occurs in Volterra. » Obsession (Brian De Palma; 1976) Clearly influenced by Hitchcock’s Vertigo, this lacklustre effort is only redeemed by some lovely shots of Florence. » The Portrait of a Lady (Jane Campion; 1996) Features a couple of scenes shot in Florence. » Quantum of Solace (Marc Forster; 2008) The 22nd Bond film featured great action sequences shot in Carrara and Siena. » A Room with a View (James Ivory; 1985) Hugely popular period drama set in Florence; there was also a 2007 UK ITV adaptation by Andrew Davies. » September Affair (William Dieterle; 1950) Joseph Cotten and Joan Fontaine fall in love in Florence; features Kurt Weill’s famous ‘September Song’. » Stealing Beauty (Bernardo Bertolucci; 1996) In her first film role, Liv Tyler grapples with grief and burgeoning sexuality in the lush Tuscan countryside. » Summer’s Lease (Martyn Friend; 1989) Award-winning BBC television adaptation of John Mortimer’s 1998 novel.


Poking a Dead Frog: Conversations With Today's Top Comedy Writers by Mike Sacks

Bernie Madoff, Columbine, hive mind, index card, iterative process, Norman Mailer, period drama, Ponzi scheme, pre–internet, Saturday Night Live, Upton Sinclair

After this, I’d be able to write my own ticket! So Chris and I broke the story and I went off to write the script. When I was done, Tim and his producers went crazy for it. I’d never been showered with so many compliments in my life. They sent a gigantic fruit basket with a note that literally said, GREAT JOB! YOU DID IT! I was so emboldened by the prospects of Cabin Boy, I immediately sat down and started writing my next script—a 1950s period drama about an incestuous brother and sister that takes place down south on a worm farm. That’s not a joke; that was a real project. Anyway, everything was moving along just fine, and then I got a call one day saying Tim had changed his mind about Cabin Boy. He no longer wanted to direct it; he wanted to produce it. He felt it was more of a “Chris and Adam thing.” In fact, in an incredible moment of generosity and wrongheadedness, he’d decided that I should direct it.


pages: 928 words: 159,837

Florence & Tuscany by Lonely Planet

Bonfire of the Vanities, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, centre right, European colonialism, haute couture, Kickstarter, period drama, post-work, sensible shoes, Skype, trade route, urban planning

Anna (Spike Lee; 2008) Based on James McBride’s novel about four black American soldiers who get trapped in a Tuscan village near Lucca during WWII. » Much Ado about Nothing (Kenneth Branagh; 1993) Branagh, Emma Thompson and Keanu Reeves star in this adaptation of Shakespeare’s comedy; shot in Chianti. » New Moon (Chris Weitz; 2009) Parts of the second film in the Twilight trilogy were shot in Montepulciano’s main piazza, despite the fact that in the book the action occurs in Volterra. » Obsession (Brian De Palma; 1976) Clearly influenced by Hitchcock’s Vertigo, this lacklustre effort is only redeemed by some lovely shots of Florence. » The Portrait of a Lady (Jane Campion; 1996) Features a couple of scenes shot in Florence. » Quantum of Solace (Marc Forster; 2008) The 22nd Bond film featured great action sequences shot in Carrara and Siena. » Romola (Henry King; 1924) The silent film version of George Eliot’s novel starred Lillian Gish and was filmed in Florence. » A Room with a View (James Ivory; 1985) Hugely popular period drama set in Florence; there was also a 2007 UK ITV adaptation by Andrew Davies. » September Affair (William Dieterle; 1950) Joseph Cotten and Joan Fontaine fall in love in Florence; features Kurt Weill’s famous ‘September Song’. » Stealing Beauty (Bernardo Bertolucci; 1996) In her first film role, Liv Tyler grapples with her grief and burgeoning sexuality in the lush Tuscan countryside. » Under the Tuscan Sun (Audrey Wells; 2003) A lightweight film version of the wildly popular memoir set in Cortona. » Up at the Villa (Philip Haas; 2000) Sean Penn and Kristin Scott Thomas star in an adaptation of Somerset Maugham’s novel. » Where Angels Fear to Tread (Charles Sturridge; 1991) A fine cast including Helen Mirren, Judy Davis and Helena Bonham Carter stars in this period film shot in San Gimignano.


pages: 1,181 words: 163,692

Lonely Planet Wales (Travel Guide) by Lonely Planet

active transport: walking or cycling, back-to-the-land, car-free, carbon footprint, Downton Abbey, global village, haute cuisine, Kickstarter, land reform, offshore financial centre, period drama, sensible shoes, trade route, urban renewal

The tour is enlivened by narrations from an array of Victorian characters and you'll explore the apartments where circuit judges used to stay and where the servants who tended them lived. 4Sleeping oOld VicarageB&B££ (%01544-260038; www.oldvicarage-nortonrads.co.uk; Norton; s/d from £78/112; p) This three-room, gay-friendly boutique B&B features Victorian fittings, making you feel like you've wandered onto the set of a period drama. Opulent, rich colours dominate and the peace of your sojourn is only interrupted by the chiming of antique clocks. Sumptuous three-course dinners (£34.95) need to be booked in advance. Norton is 1.5 miles north of Presteigne on the B4355. Wegnalls HouseB&B££ (%01544-267710; www.kingsturning.co.uk; Kingsturning; s/d £50/80; p) This substantial early Edwardian redbrick house, right on the brook that marks the England/Wales border in these parts, is the venue for a very pleasant guesthouse.


Sweden by Becky Ohlsen

accounting loophole / creative accounting, car-free, centre right, clean water, financial independence, glass ceiling, haute couture, Kickstarter, low cost airline, low cost carrier, mass immigration, New Urbanism, period drama, place-making, post-work, starchitect, the built environment, white picket fence

The grand entrance has been retained, complete with painted glass ceiling and sweeping staircase, and the elegant, airy rooms make necessary 21st-century concessions like flatscreen TVs and renovated bathrooms. There’s also homemade cake for guests. Check the website for special offers. Hotel Eggers (333 44 40; www.hoteleggers.se; Drottningtorget; s/d from Skr1495/1835; ) Elegant Eggers would make a great set for a period drama. Founded as a railway hotel in 1859, its rooms are a Regency-style treat. A good few have private balconies overlooking the bustling square, and nearby parking spots (Skr120 per 24 hours) can be booked at reception. Hotell Barken Viking (63 58 00; barken.viking@liseberg.se; Gullbergskajen; s/d Skr1495/2050; ) Freshly revamped, Barken Viking is an elegant four-masted sailing ship, converted into a stylish hotel and restaurant and moored near Lilla Bommen harbour.


Italy by Damien Simonis

active transport: walking or cycling, airport security, bike sharing scheme, Bonfire of the Vanities, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, centre right, clean water, congestion charging, discovery of the americas, Frank Gehry, haute couture, illegal immigration, Kickstarter, large denomination, low cost airline, low cost carrier, Murano, Venice glass, pension reform, period drama, Peter Eisenman, Skype, spice trade, starchitect, sustainable-tourism, trade route, urban planning, urban sprawl, women in the workforce

Inland from Chiavari (which is located 12km east of Santa Margherita) you can lose the crowds and breathe fresh mountain air in the Parco Naturale Regionale dell’Aveto ( park office 0185 34 03 11; www.parks.it/parco.aveto; Via Marrè 75a, Borzonasca; 2.30-5.30pm Thu & Fri, 8.30am-12.30pm Sat & Sun), a nature reserve at the northern end of the Val d’Aveto. The tranquil valley starts 12km north of the coast in Borzonasca. Heading north, Santo Stefano d’Aveto (population 1280) is a small cross-country skiing centre and the main village in the valley. Between the two is Lago delle Lame, a glacial lake whose shallow waters have preserved fir-tree stumps from 2500 years ago. Cinque Terre A film director aiming to shoot an authentic period drama set in 17th-century Italy need look no further than Cinque Terre. Bar an overabundance of ogling tourists and a busy 19th-century railway line that burrows through a series of coastal tunnels, barely anything about these five crazily constructed Ligurian villages has changed in over three centuries. Even cars – those most ubiquitous of modern interferences – are missing, thanks to a 1997 Unesco ban.

San Lorenzo Tre ( 075 894 45 55; www.sanlorenzo3.it; Via San Lorenzo 3; s/d €75/110, s/d without bathroom €55/75, all incl breakfast; Mar-Dec) Five generations of the same family have lived at this proper historic residence, and the current owner, Marzia, keeps the B&B’s decor as honest a representation as you’ll find anywhere in Umbria. Awaiting guests are filling, home-cooked breakfasts, a stunning rooftop view and rooms so atmospherically romantic, they were once used as the backdrop of a period drama. Todi Castle ( 0744 95 20 04; www.todicastle.com; Vocabolo Capecchio, Morre; room in villa from €120, room in castle incl breakfast from €160, weekly rates available; ) Here’s your chance to live in an honest-to-goodness castle, or in one of three equally perfect (and more affordable) private villas. From on-site private pools, medieval ruins, a deer park and the most attentive staff in Umbria, you’ll feel positively royal.


pages: 1,396 words: 245,647

The Strangest Man: The Hidden Life of Paul Dirac, Mystic of the Atom by Graham Farmelo

Albert Einstein, anti-communist, Arthur Eddington, Berlin Wall, cuban missile crisis, double helix, Ernest Rutherford, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial independence, gravity well, Henri Poincaré, invention of radio, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Murray Gell-Mann, period drama, Richard Feynman, Simon Singh, Solar eclipse in 1919, Stephen Hawking, strikebreaker, University of East Anglia

He and Manci might go to a classical concert, or he might read a novel – Edgar Allen Poe mysteries, Le Carré spy thrillers and Hoyle’s science-fiction stories were among his favourites – or watch television with Manci in the family room, dominated by a painting of Judy when she was a child.11 Dirac watched most of the Nova science documentaries, but the programmes that he and Manci regarded as unmissable were period dramas: The Forsyte Saga – Dirac was spellbound by the leading lady, Nyree Dawn Porter – and Upstairs, Downstairs, dramatising the class divisions between the servants and their masters in an Edwardian household. On the night an episode of the programme was broadcast, the Diracs would accept dinner invitations with friends only if their hosts agreed in advance to watch it with them in silence. One dispute about the evening television schedule threatened to get out of hand, when there was a clash between Cher’s Sunday-night television show – a highlight of Dirac’s week – and the live broadcast of the Oscar ceremony, which Manci was desperate to see.


Rough Guide to San Francisco and the Bay Area by Nick Edwards, Mark Ellwood

1960s counterculture, airport security, back-to-the-land, Bay Area Rapid Transit, British Empire, Burning Man, California gold rush, carbon footprint, City Beautiful movement, El Camino Real, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, glass ceiling, Golden Gate Park, Haight Ashbury, haute cuisine, Joan Didion, Kickstarter, Loma Prieta earthquake, Menlo Park, Nelson Mandela, period drama, pez dispenser, Port of Oakland, rent control, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, South of Market, San Francisco, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, strikebreaker, transcontinental railway, unpaid internship, upwardly mobile, urban decay, urban planning, urban renewal, white picket fence, Works Progress Administration, young professional

Television In San Francisco, you’ll have access to all the usual stations: from major networks like ABC (channel 7), CBS (channel 5), NBC (channel 3), and Fox (channel 2) to smaller netlets like the WB and UPN. Expect talk shows in the morning, soaps in the afternoon, and marquee-name comedies and dramas in primetime. If that’s all too maddeningly commercial-heavy, there’s always the rather earnest, ad-free public broadcasting station KQED (channel 9), which fills its schedule with news, documentaries, and imported period dramas. There’s a wider choice on cable, including CNN for news, and the Food Network for cooking shows or epicurean travelogues; well-regarded premium channels like HBO and Showtime are often available on hotel TV systems, showing original series and blockbuster movies. Radio Listening to the radio is often one of the smartest ways to gauge the character of the local area. It’s best to skip most specialty stations on the AM frequency – although there may be the occasional interesting chat program.


pages: 916 words: 248,265

The Railways: Nation, Network and People by Simon Bradley

Alfred Russel Wallace, back-to-the-land, Beeching cuts, British Empire, clean water, Corn Laws, cross-subsidies, David Brooks, Etonian, intermodal, joint-stock company, loose coupling, low cost airline, oil shale / tar sands, period drama, railway mania, Ralph Waldo Emerson

In return, the film company can use ready-made locations with on-site facilities, complete with props. All those enamelled signs, platform scales, milk churns and trolleys piled high with old suitcases, the clichés of many a preserved line, create instant atmosphere when framed in the camera lens. Exclusive occupation for filming is another attraction, as long as the high season is avoided. As viewers of period dramas may dimly be aware, their characters’ meetings and tear-stained partings on railway platforms occur suspiciously often in the colder months, amid evocative clouds of steam. The Bluebell does all this especially well, dressing its stations with well-chosen signage, posters and accessories from different periods, late-Victorian to 1950s. Other railways make use of diesel as well as steam, hosting locomotives and multiple units built under the Modernisation Plan of 1955, or more recently still (there is even a Pacer Preservation Society).


Scandinavia by Andy Symington

call centre, carbon footprint, centre right, clean water, connected car, edge city, full employment, glass ceiling, Kickstarter, low cost airline, low cost carrier, mass immigration, New Urbanism, North Sea oil, out of africa, period drama, Skype, the built environment, trade route, urban sprawl, walkable city, young professional

City Hotel Vid Avenyn BUDGET HOTEL € ( 708 40 00; www.cityhotelgbg.se; Lorensbergsgatan 6; s/d without bathroom from Skr695/795) The City represents excellent value for such a central hotel. Staff are friendly, rooms are comfy and for about Skr300 extra you can have a private bathroom. A continental breakfast is included, or you can opt to buy the breakfast buffet at the in-house restaurant–pub (which boasts 80 varieties of beer). Hotel Eggers HOTEL €€ ( 333 44 40; www.hoteleggers.se; Drottningtorget; s/d around Skr1270/1590; ) Elegant Eggers would make a great set for a period drama. Founded as a railway hotel in 1859, its rooms are a Regency-style treat. A good few have private balconies overlooking the bustling square, and nearby parking spots (per 24 hours Sk120) can be booked at reception. Hotell Barken Viking HOTEL €€€ ( 63 58 00; barken.viking@liseberg.se; Gullbergskajen; s/d Skr1595/2150; ) Barken Viking is an elegant four-masted sailing ship, converted into a stylish hotel and restaurant and moored near Lilla Bommen harbour.


Great Britain by David Else, Fionn Davenport

active transport: walking or cycling, Albert Einstein, Beeching cuts, Boris Johnson, British Empire, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, clean water, colonial rule, Columbine, congestion charging, credit crunch, David Attenborough, Etonian, food miles, glass ceiling, global village, haute cuisine, illegal immigration, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Kickstarter, land reform, Livingstone, I presume, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, mega-rich, negative equity, new economy, North Sea oil, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, period drama, place-making, Skype, Sloane Ranger, South of Market, San Francisco, Stephen Hawking, the market place, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Winter of Discontent

Here too is one of her sparkly evening gowns and famous handbags, as well as displays on Sir Isaac Newton. You can easily spot the part 13th-, part 16th-century parish church of St Wulfram’s ( 9am-4pm Mon-Sat Apr-Sep, to 12.30pm Mon-Fri & 10am-1pm Sat Oct-Mar) thanks to its pin-sharp 85m spire. It has an interesting crypt chapel, and hidden up a steep stairwell is a rare 16th-century chained library where a young Newton once pored over his studies. A dream location for English period dramas (several have been filmed here), serene Restoration country mansion, Belton House (NT; 01476-566116; A607; adult/child under 16yr £9.50/5.50, grounds only £7.50/4.50; 12.30-5pm Wed-Sun Apr-Oct), stands in a 400-hectare park, 3 miles northeast of Grantham. Built in 1688 for Sir John Brownlow, it shelters some astonishingly ornate woodcarvings attributed to the master Dutch carver Grinling Gibbons.

Return to beginning of chapter STAMFORD pop 19,525 This handsome town has a sunny disposition all year round thanks to the warm honey-coloured Lincolnshire limestone of its buildings. Nestling against the River Welland and a lush waterside park, handsome Stamford’s tangle of streets is bursting with fine medieval and Georgian constructions. And if you feel as though you’re walking through a period drama, there’s a reason: Stamford has been used as a set for more drama productions than you can shake a clapperboard at. The tourist office ( 01780-755611; stamfordtic@southkesteven.gov.uk; 27 St Mary’s St; 9.30am-5pm Mon-Sat & 10am-3.30pm Sun Apr-Oct) is in the Stamford Arts Centre, and helps with accommodation. They can also arrange guided town walks and chauffeured punt trips. The Stamford Museum ( 01780-766317; Broad St; admission free; 10am-4pm Mon-Sat) has a muddle of displays on the town’s history including models of circus-performing midget Charles Stratton (aka Tom Thumb) and local heavyweight Daniel Lambert.


Lonely Planet Greek Islands by Lonely Planet, Alexis Averbuck, Michael S Clark, Des Hannigan, Victoria Kyriakopoulos, Korina Miller

car-free, carbon footprint, credit crunch, eurozone crisis, G4S, haute couture, haute cuisine, low cost airline, low cost carrier, Norman Mailer, pension reform, period drama, sensible shoes, sustainable-tourism, trade route, transfer pricing, urban sprawl

In 477 BC Athens established a confederacy on the sacred island of Delos and demanded tributes from the surrounding islands to protect them from the Persians. The treasury was moved to Athens in 461 BC and Pericles (ruler from 461 BC to 429 BC) used the money to transform the city. This period has become known as Athens’ golden age, the pinnacle of the classical era. Most of the monuments on the Acropolis today date from this period. Drama and literature flourished with such luminaries as Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. The sculptors Pheidias and Myron and the historians Herodotus, Thucydides and Xenophon also lived during this time. RIVALRY WITH SPARTA Sparta did not let Athens revel in its new-found glory. The jockeying for power between the two led to the Peloponnesian Wars in 431 BC, which dragged on until 404 BC, when Sparta gained the upper hand.


pages: 1,013 words: 302,015

A Classless Society: Britain in the 1990s by Alwyn W. Turner

Berlin Wall, Bob Geldof, Boris Johnson, British Empire, call centre, centre right, deindustrialization, demand response, Desert Island Discs, endogenous growth, Etonian, eurozone crisis, facts on the ground, Fall of the Berlin Wall, falling living standards, first-past-the-post, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, friendly fire, full employment, global village, greed is good, inflation targeting, lateral thinking, means of production, millennium bug, minimum wage unemployment, moral panic, negative equity, Neil Kinnock, Nelson Mandela, offshore financial centre, old-boy network, period drama, Ronald Reagan, sexual politics, Stephen Hawking, upwardly mobile, Winter of Discontent, women in the workforce

It’s summer holidays on the beach, huddled beneath the blanket, sheltering from the wind. Some memories are so vivid.’ It was easy to mock, but there was undoubtedly a part of the British psyche that yearned for the old certainties. Major’s creation of a cabinet post for national heritage (which didn’t outlast him, being reconstituted as the department for culture, media and sport) reflected not only the public taste for those period dramas of which Virginia Bottomley approved, but also the standing of the National Trust. Founded in 1895, the organisation had celebrated its fiftieth birthday at the end of the Second World War with 8,000 members; by the end of the century it numbered two million, far in excess of all the political parties put together. Major’s desire to wallow in the past was not unique to him. It was his reference to Orwell, however, that provided a field day for the prime minister’s critics.


Greece Travel Guide by Lonely Planet

active transport: walking or cycling, Airbnb, capital controls, car-free, carbon footprint, credit crunch, haute couture, haute cuisine, illegal immigration, indoor plumbing, Kickstarter, low cost airline, low cost carrier, pension reform, period drama, sensible shoes, trade route, urban sprawl

In 477 BC Athens established a confederacy on the sacred island of Delos and demanded tributes from the surrounding islands to protect them from the Persians. The treasury was moved to Athens in 461 BC and Pericles, ruler from 461 BC to 429 BC, used the money to transform the city. This period has become known as Athens’ golden age – the pinnacle of the classical era. Most of the monuments on the Acropolis today date from this period. Drama and literature flourished due to such luminaries as Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. The sculptors Pheidias and Myron and the historians Herodotus, Thucydides and Xenophon also lived during this time. Rivalry with Sparta Sparta did not let Athens revel in its newfound glory. Their jockeying for power led to the Peloponnesian Wars in 431 BC, which dragged on until 404 BC, when Sparta gained the upper hand.


Greece by Korina Miller

car-free, carbon footprint, credit crunch, Google Earth, haute cuisine, illegal immigration, informal economy, invention of the printing press, pension reform, period drama, sensible shoes, too big to fail, trade route, upwardly mobile, urban renewal, urban sprawl, women in the workforce

In 477 BC Athens established a confederacy on the sacred island of Delos and demanded tributes from the surrounding islands to protect them from the Persians. It was little more than a standover racket because the Persians were no longer much of a threat. The treasury was moved to Athens in 461 BC and Pericles (ruler from 461 BC to 429 BC) used the money to transform the city. This period has become known as Athens’ golden age, the pinnacle of the classical era. Most of the monuments on the Acropolis today date from this period. Drama and literature flourished in the form of the tragedies written by such luminaries as Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. The sculptors Pheidias and Myron and the historians Herodotus, Thucydides and Xenophon also lived during this time. * * * GODS & MYTHS Athena, the city’s patron deity, dominates Athens’ mythology and the city’s great monuments are dedicated to the goddess. As the myth goes, Athena won this honour in a battle with Poseidon.


Ireland (Lonely Planet, 9th Edition) by Fionn Davenport

air freight, Berlin Wall, Bob Geldof, British Empire, carbon footprint, Celtic Tiger, centre right, credit crunch, glass ceiling, global village, haute cuisine, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Jacquard loom, Kickstarter, McMansion, new economy, period drama, reserve currency, risk/return, sustainable-tourism, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, young professional

There are excellent DJs nightly; the nightclub bit of the venue Click here opens Thursday through Saturday. Return to beginning of chapter ENTERTAINMENT Dublin’s too small to be the entertainment mecca the tourist authorities and other interested parties would have once had you believe, but it’s still a pretty decent burg to have a good time in, with a range of options to satisfy almost all desires, from period drama to dog racing and most distractions in between. For entertainment information, pick up a copy of the Event Guide (www.eventguide.ie), a bimonthly freebie available at many locations, including bars, cafes and hostels; the fortnightly music-review Hot Press (www.hotpress.com); or the freebie In Dublin, also out every two weeks. Friday’s Irish Times has a pull-out entertainment section called the Ticket, which has comprehensive listings of clubs and gigs; the Irish Independent’s version, also out on Friday, is called Day & Night.


Southeast Asia on a Shoestring Travel Guide by Lonely Planet

active transport: walking or cycling, airport security, Alfred Russel Wallace, anti-communist, British Empire, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, clean water, clockwatching, colonial rule, Google Earth, haute cuisine, indoor plumbing, Kickstarter, large denomination, low cost airline, low cost carrier, Mason jar, megacity, period drama, Skype, South China Sea, spice trade, superstar cities, sustainable-tourism, trade route, urban sprawl, white picket fence, women in the workforce

Finding the right guide – and, through them, the right longhouse – can mean the difference between spending a sleepless night with other sweaty, bored tourists, and having a spirited evening (double entendre intended) swapping smiles, stories and shots of rice wine with the locals. What to Expect When you arrive at a longhouse, don’t be surprised to find that it wouldn’t make a very good film set for a period drama about headhunters. The Dayaks have moved – for the most part willingly – into the 21st century and so have their dwellings. Remember, though, that a longhouse, more than being a building, is a way of life embodying a communal lifestyle and a very real sense of mutual reliance and responsibility. It is this spirit rather than the physical building that makes a visit special. Every longhouse is led by a headman.