Thursday, September 22, 2005

Filthy, Dirty Victorian Lit

I've been reading Raffles: The Amateur Cracksman, which was a very popular Victorian novel about two upper class gentlemen-thieves nicknamed "Raffles" and "Bunny"

A few random quotes:

"I was never in your rooms before to-night. But I fagged for you at school, and you said you remembered me."

"But is that wise when he's the man we've got to diddle?"

"Because he had been kind to me at school, when he was captain of the eleven, and I his fag, I had dared to look for kindness from him now."

"And for many seconds we stood staring in each other's eyes."

"All right Bunny, there's no hanky-panky this time."

(The entire book is full of stuff like this. I mean, just look at the title)
It's terribly amusing because it is loaded with phrases that seem very non-Victorian... much more fun than looking for dirty jokes in Shakespeare, because apparently here it is completely inadvertent.

I suppose one must read this back-to-back with Truman Capote or something.

Signing off

15 Comments:

Anonymous tim said...

for some reason that all kind of turned me on.

11:52 AM  
Blogger Jamie Dawn said...

How very funny. Language has changed over the years, and we have to be careful when using certain words like gay and bush. Oh my!!

1:20 PM  
Blogger Morgan said...

You know, your site is XXX... I tried to visit it today while subbing in an Elementary school and the computer system wouldn't let me access you. It said the site contained profane and/or adult material, or what had the potential to be inappropriate viewing for youngsters. What do you think about that?
And, does your book have any pictures -- you know me, the visual one.

4:21 PM  
Anonymous Professor Twain said...

While the quotes that you provided are indeed full of double entendre, you must have a pretty filthy mind to have noticed the symbolism in the book title! Even a randy rascal like me would have let that one pass, I am beginning to wonder about you...

4:54 PM  
Blogger Nyx said...

I have got to get me that book, it sounds a riot.

11:53 PM  
Blogger L said...

Tim: I didn't realize that you batted for that team ;) heh heh

Jamie Dawn: yeah, it totally cracked me up

Lisa: wow. I guess I must be doing something right then

Hello Professor: Fancy seeing you out here... and I do have a filthy mind. It's a terrible thing to waste.

llcoffee: it's mildly amusing, but not as good as Sherlock Holmes or something like that...

9:04 PM  
Blogger frustratedwriter said...

Would love to post a comment but I am off to purchase a Victorian novel.

4:17 PM  
Anonymous Kosh said...

I'm feeling rather horney right now. Or maybe that's the half bottle of champagne talking.

10:28 PM  
Blogger L said...

Kosh: I could use some champagne right now....

10:28 PM  
Anonymous r* said...

The same language is used throughout Roald Dahl's biography, which I read in junior high. I remember being seriously confused as to what the f*ck was wrong with British people that they would encourage that kind of thing in their boarding schools and what exactly they were doing anyway.

10:28 PM  
Anonymous Vile File said...

I won't give you a definition of what fagging entails. I'll let you think it's something naughty.

...Can tell you though, I'd love a fag of my own for around the house.

Also, to us subjects under British dominion, "gagging for a fag" can also mean "I'd love a cigarette." I told this to an American I met on holiday, and he found it extremely funny. Can't imagine why.

10:28 PM  
Blogger L said...

r*: I LOVE Roald Dahl-- always a fave

Ms. Vile: I know it means a ciggy, but I stil can't help giggling

10:29 PM  
Anonymous glomgold said...

I have no clue what these excerpts were originally intended to mean.

10:29 PM  
Anonymous comfort addict said...

Why is it that all I can imagine are the "Upper Class Twit of the Year" guys from Monty Python?

10:29 PM  
Blogger L said...

glomgold: neither do I :)

comfort addict: that's perfect

10:29 PM  

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