Loose women, celebrity and poverty2010-12-29 at 04:20 pm Blog RSS
Let me tell you the tale of Kitty Fisher from the Georgian time. If the name sounds familiar it is because of an old rhyme:
Lucy Locket, lost her pocket
Kitty Fisher found it
Not a penny was there in it
Only ribbon round it
The names are both adopted by prostitutes. The original ladies who adopted these names are disputed as often you had names like Moll cutpurse too, and you could have two or three ‘Lucy Lockets’ operating in a single Georgian square containing many brothels.
The ‘Pocket’ was essentially the handbag of the time and was tied around the waist like a bumbag/fanny pack held inside rather than outside the clothing and accessed by a slit in the dress which is how we gain the name for the modern day pocket. We now know that one of them was probably theiving from her fellow prostitute.
Kitty Fisher was rather celebrated in her day (usually the ‘day’ of one of these attractive ladies was rather short – in the region of five to seven years when they went from fresh faced child to pox ridden death). Painters like Hogarth recorded both their short lived beauty and acclaim, and the smooth descent thereafter.
The life would often be an attractive girl, picked up off the carriage by a kindly old woman who later invoked high charges that couldn’t be paid except with the flesh, or a child of maybe ten, sold for her virginity (which was regarded as a cure for Venereal disease and so she was infected on the first encounter which I prefer to describe more accurately as rape and child abuse), and a strange old woman ‘restoring’ that virginity often for up to twelve months) while she was given over-priced clothes and lodging which she can never pay for except by further ‘patrons of the establishment’.
If she was lucky then she would be pretty and witty enough to `be ‘`kept’ as a mistress for a while, which was a very precarious lifestyle that started with carriages and ended being deserted, in the poorhouse and if released became what was known as a ‘tuppenny standup’…all looks, prospects and health gone…..often the celebrated people who were painted by masters such as Hogarth ended so.
A lot of the women who were pretty started so, and were celebrated in the papers…a vicarious celebrity. A few even gained acceptance and led society…the others had a fast declining notoriety.
Sounds horrible doesn’t it?
Shall we have a look at today?
The reason why I have told you this appears unclear. We all know I generally make a point and there is no point about us today there thrust at you.
I am asking you to look at this and think before I apply that to today and to us. Is that OK?
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