The tale of Elizabeth Smith (and her second husband’s first wife’s first husband), 1766

Sometimes, when trawling through historical records, a researcher comes across personal stories that seem destined for Hollywood. Take this dramatic tale of romance triumphing against all the odds, featuring sexually-charged teenage servants, illegimate pregnancy, forced separation, triple bigamy, a few deaths, and a gouty clergyman in a sedan chair. All in that world-renowned town of passion and enchantment... Bicester. Before... Continue Reading →


The reluctant father: An c18th joke

'A girl big with child had two gallants, one with a wooden leg; the question was put, which, he who had the wooden leg, offered to decide it thus: "If the child (says he) comes into the world with a wooden leg, it is mine, if not it must be yours."'   - from 'The... Continue Reading →

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