With Whooping Cough (Pertussis) reaching epidemic levels in recent years, a push to promote vaccination against it has received renewed publicity. As part of the DTP and DTaP (Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis) dose, we now have the ability to avoid these illnesses which were, in Jane Austen’s time, without prevention or cure. Though that’s not to say that there weren’t whooping cough “cures” which were recommended, as you’ll see below.
In some countries, this disease is called the 100 days’ cough or cough of 100 days. The incubation period is typically seven to ten days with a range of four to 21 days and rarely may be as long as 42 days, after which there are usually mild respiratory symptoms, mild coughing, sneezing, or runny nose. This is known as the catarrhal stage. After one to two weeks, the coughing classically develops into uncontrollable fits, each with five to ten forceful coughs, followed by a high-pitched “whoop” sound in younger children, or a gasping sound in older children, as the patient struggles to breathe in afterwards.
Fits can occur on their own or can be triggered by yawning, stretching, laughing, eating or yelling; they usually occur in
groups, with multiple episodes on an hourly basis throughout the day. This stage usually lasts two to eight weeks, or sometimes longer. A gradual transition then occurs to the convalescent stage, which usually lasts one to two weeks. This stage is marked by a decrease in paroxysms of coughing, both in frequency and severity, and a cessation of vomiting. A tendency to produce the “whooping” sound after coughing may remain for a considerable period after the disease itself has cleared up. Continue reading Martha Lloyd’s Whooping Cough Cure
In October, 1809, Jane Austen was busy entertaining her nephews, Edward’s children, after the death of their mother. She wrote to Cassandra with a round up of their busy schedule, which included games, constructing ships from paper, and walks about town:
“We do not want amusement: bilbocatch, at which George is indefatigable; spillikins, paper ships, riddles, conundrums, and cards, with watching the flow and ebb of the river, and now and then a stroll out, keep us well employed; and we mean to avail ourselves of our kind papa’s consideration, by not returning to Winchester till quite the evening of Wednesday.”
No doubt, this time with her brother’s children was excellent practice for writing the character of Anne Elliot in Persuasion. Paper ships are quite easy to make and can become addicting. The directions, however, are easier shown than described. Watch the following video, or visit wikihow for detailed instructions. Continue reading Paper Ships: An Austen Inspired Flotilla
Papa has given me half-a-dozen new pencils, which are very good ones indeed; I draw every other day.
Elizabeth Austen-Knight to Cassandra Austen
October 18, 1813
With school back in session, and the smell of apples, chalk dust and pencil shavings in the air, what could be more fun than taking a bit of Austen with you into class? We promise that a few of these Jane Austen pencils in your desk will make even calculus more appealing! Pair them with notecards or a journal to create a fun gift for any Austen lover or teacher.
To begin, you’ll need:
pencils (any type, #2, preferably with white erasers)
Modgepodge or white glue
a few pages of Austen text (taken from a discarded copy of the book, or printed on a printer. I keep an old copy of P&P simply to upcycle pages for various projects)
Take your page and cut it so that it can be rolled around the pencil and lightly overlapped. The top edge should begin at the base of the metal “Cuff” which holds the eraser in place and the bottom should extend slightly beyond the end of the pencil (this is uusually about 7″ x 1″.)
Lightly sand your pencil so that the glue will adhere more closely.
Use the paintbrush to apply a thin coat of Modgepodge or white school glue to the backside of the paper.
Roll the paper around the pencil and overlap. The paper should be snug and not slide. Flatten any air bubbles so that it sticks at all points to the pencil. If necessary, add more glue to the seam in order for it to lay flat and tight.
Allow pencil to dry. Be sure that it won’t stick to anything while drying, by laying it on a baking rack or standing it up in a glass (you can use this time to complete more pencils)
Once pencil has dried, add an additional coat of modgepodge or glue to the outside of the pencil. Let dry again.
Trim the paper so that the end lies flush with the end of the pencil. Embellish with Austen stickers, if desired, sharpen and enjoy!
Pencils such as this can be purchased in gift baskets from Austentation, or individually from Creative Carmelina, on Etsy.
Laura Boyle is an avid Regency enthusiast. Find more fashion information and one of a kind Regency inspired accessories at her shop, Austentation: Regency Accessories