Having a ball! 200年前的人如何派对
Vocabulary: party 词汇: 派对，舞会
Are you a good dancer? We all know it's awkward not to be aware of the latest cool moves, but 200 years ago this could have meant social disaster!
A fictional ball from Jane Austin's 1813 novel "Pride and Prejudice" was recreated for a BBC programme. It showed the importance of dance for courtship.
At a time when physical contact was restricted and a chaperone was the order of the day in polite society, an invitation for a dance was one of the few opportunities for people to flirt with potential partners.
Amanda Vickery, professor of modern history at Queen Mary, University of London, says: "The ability to dance was key to romantic success. Clumsiness was sexual suicide."
Women with a bad memory could buy a fan which had the music and dance steps listed on the back. Men were more exposed on the dance floor.
But gentlemen of the Regency period were helped by fashion. Tailored jackets and trousers held up by braces forced them to walk upright and made them look elegant.
Ladies' dresses were handmade. The popular fabric of the time was muslin and there were rumours that women would have wet the fabric so that the outline of their figure could be seen beneath the dress.
Men and women would have arrived in their boots but these were a no-no on the dance floor. Everyone carried their dancing shoes, which looked like ballet shoes.
Hungry partygoers wouldn't be disappointed with the catering at a 19th century ball. They would replenish the energy lost from all that dancing with dishes like partridge pie and cheese ice cream.
The meal was an opportunity for the host to show his wealth and so was the lighting. Wax candles were very expensive 200 years ago. But they were really useful for a tired and sleepy host keen to see the last guest out. The size of the sticks determined the party's duration: 4 hours or 6 hours. As soon as the flames died out, he could just shut the door behind him and go out like a light.
Glossary 词汇表 （点击单词收听发音）
- Regency period摄政时期
- the braces背带
- the outline（形体的）轮廓
- the figure体型，身材
- to be a no-no是个禁忌
- partridge pie山鹑派
- to go out like a light一下子就睡着了