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Monday, 29 August 2011

Winning the Sex War...

'There is something delightfully feminine about a wife who  spends a little more than her
husband's actual income...'

This brilliant quote comes from   a 1930's copy of Woman's Own  I found at an antiques fair in York this weekend. In his article ' praising women's faults,' Guy Trent explains: 'We admire your feminine tantrums,  your naughty unreasonableness, your funny little vanities...but most of all we love you for your dependence on us.'  Victoria Beckham - please take note!

I'm addicted to vintage women's magazines. They catalogue social history and the changing roles of the sexes over the years. Remember the bra burners of the swinging  sixties? They'll be in their sixties themselves by now taking Ibruprofen for back pain and  wondering just what they have achieved.

By the fifties 'Picture Post' was championing motor cycle sport for women whilst still telling us to don our best hats for Ascot. And in 1985 Peugeot were urging women to buy their very own sportscar -  only £5,995 on the road...

But back to that Woman's Own.   'Now it's YOUR turn'  it finishes   'to tell us what you feel about the men. Five shillings each for the best letters and  only one fault at a time please.'     You couldn't make it up...

Here's to the next generation of women - says 'thoroughly modern Millie...'

Monday, 15 August 2011

A summer Tale..

                My favourite place to write is in my own garden-who says we haven't had a summer?

                        And summer wouldn't be summer without some Guernsey photos, too...

Can anyone spot the Guernsey cows?

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Parlez-vous Guernsey French?

When I was small my grandparents would talk to each other in Guernsey French whenever there was something they didn't want me or my sisters to hear.  The result? I learnt quite few words for myself, especially those concerning chocolate or treats!  So I was delighted recently to discover in a second-hand bookshop a glossary of 1,000 'Gernesies' words by Eric Fellowes Lukis.  'An Outline of the Franco-Norman Dialect of Gernsey' (Revised Edition 1985)  also charts the fascinating history of this wonderful language.

Says the author in the foreword 'It is almost a miracle that a language existing only as a spoken dialect for nearly a thousand years and continually exposed to French influence, could have retained so much of its ancient heritage.'
Whilst searching through the book I have found several fascinating words  like 'charlotaer'  which means 'pamper' and gavlottaer' - 'to lounge about.'  There's the devilish 'pimperluche', a perfect word for a 'wasp' and the unlikely-sounding 'babiloubuene' which means, apparently, indiscretion.

Controversially, the author has built up a case for the revised spelling of the language insisting that 'the French spelling adopted in the 19th century cannot represent accurately the strange un-French sound of Gernesies.'

I think I might I agree with that  - it was mostly Double Dutch to me...