Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Wondrous Words Wednesday - Emma

I am joining Kathy at BermudaOnion's Weblog to share words I found while reading this week. If you want to join us, share some words then link up at Kathy's blog.

I found these words while slogging through Emma by Jane Austen.


"Those who can barely live, and who live perforce in a very small, and generally very inferior society, may very well be illiberal and cross."

not allowing people to think and act as they choose: not liberal


"If I draw less, I shall read more; if I give up music, I shall take up carpet-work"

I could not find a definition of carpet-work when I searched the internet, but I think if may be like embroidery or needlepoint.  I understood it to mean a way to keep herself busy if she ended up being an old maid.


"... and if she does but send her aunt the pattern of a stomacher, or knit a pair of garters for her grandmother, one hears of nothing else for a month.

the center front section of a waist or underwaist,  or a usually heavily embroidered or jeweled separate piece for the center front of a bodice worn by men and women in the 15th and 16th centuries and later by women only

A close up of a probable hand embroidered stomacher

A 16th Century version of a stomacher in a dress
A modern version 
 Both the 16th-century version and the modern version show a lot of  decolletage.

Stay Busy and Stay Happy


  1. "Slogging" through Emma? It must be all that old language. I like all your new words. Stomacher is very interesting. I've seem that feature before but had no idea it had a special name. Thanks for the pictures.

  2. The pictures of stomacher are very pretty, good words.

  3. When I start classics I feel like I'm slogging through them until I adjust to the language.

    It seems there are lots of illiberals out there these days - it's too bad the word isn't used often. Maybe carpet work is rug hooking?

  4. This is exactly how I pictured a stomacher! Thanks for sharing....and thanks for stopping by!