Femme de Voyage

From the Victorian era. This ad was found by a historian in a scrapbook with similar material. More info here.

     Posted By: Alex - Tue Jan 21, 2014
     Category: Nineteenth Century

And, here's your word for the day; appurtenances. In short, it means 'sports equipment'. 😜
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 01/21/14 at 09:48 AM
Good post! Click on the more info, she writes a good blog
Posted by F.U.D. on 01/21/14 at 01:07 PM
Victorian blow up dolls! :lol:
Posted by Patty in Ohio, USA on 01/21/14 at 08:07 PM
Hay! Let's not start laughing at Victoria, she never says anything bad about you.
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 01/22/14 at 12:51 AM
Is this Victoria's Secret?

Mind you, I'm suspicious. I'm not at all sure that the Victorians had the materials to make this article - plastic, certainly not, and rubber, not of the quality necessary for the required shaping. A balloon is all very well, but this needs more detail. Nor do I believe that any Victorian gentleman would want, or need, anything like this. Those who could afford Artificial Fanny could also afford Ill Repute Fanny, who was widely available in the less salubrious quarters of any city. But in all those, I might well be mistaken or not as well informed. No, my real suspicions are typographical.

The fonts check out: a Century-like egyptienne and something which looks like Caslon open face - slightly later than Victorian times, but something similar might well have existed. However, there are three things which make me smell a rat.
1. Those jaggies. Either she's done a very bad job of scanning, printing, and re-scanning, or this was originally created on a computer. And to my eye, it looks much more like the latter.
2. "it's appurtenances". As an error, it's old. As an error left in an advertisement of this kind, I don't believe any Victorian advertiser would stoop that low. This was the time when correctors still had jobs. (And, suggestively, she makes the same error in the text of the article.)
3. The "fi" in "five" on the bottom row. In period material, I'd be very surprised to find a type-setter not using the ligature.

All in all, I'd say it's a fake. A funny fake, but a fake. Probably perpetrated by someone in the steampunk scene.
Posted by Richard Bos on 01/22/14 at 10:11 AM
The early installments of Alan Moore's LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN featured a lot of mocked-up fake ads of this nature. Perhaps that was the source...?
Posted by Paul on 01/22/14 at 11:06 AM
While we're at it, a hundred guineas is 105 pounds, or $525, or tens of thousands of dollars today. I'll craft my own, thank you.
Posted by Rodger on 01/23/14 at 01:17 PM
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