Falling in Love in the Era of Village Raids, Squires, Knights In Shining Armor, Ladies, and Corsets

Just what would the world be like if romance did not exist? What were relationships like in the past? One thing’s for sure, you’ll never understand the surge of emotions that rippled through the bodies of people during those days by reading history books. The most effective source for that kind of information is a historical romance novel.

Generally speaking, a historical romance is a book set in a pre-World War II era. The lives of the characters should reflect details associated with the cir[censored] stances of that period. The pioneer pieces of this literary category were created by early 20th century author Georgette Heyer, who chose the Regency period as the backdrop of her works. Here are a few of the romantic customs and dating rituals that serve as the premise for historical romances.

Forced marriages

In the olden days, courtships had never been practiced. Women were not given the power to choose whether to get married or not, as the partnerships were made by force. If there wasn’t enough suitable women in the village, men will raid other villages to capture spouses. According to an old French tradition, couples should drink a honey-based brew called metheglin on the first night of marriage. This custom was the basis of the term ‘honeymoon’.

Chivalry at its best during medieval times

From buying dinner on a date to getting up and offering a seat to a lady, today’s meaning of chivalry is rooted in the courting rituals of the medieval period. In those times, arranged marriages were the norm, but young lovers started to reject this, claiming the importance of love in a partnership. Suitors showered the women with poetry and serenades; chastity and honor were highly regarded.

Formal courtship in the Victorian era

It was in the Victorian era when most people agreed that arranged marriages were antiquated traditions, and that romantic love was above all else. Courtships became even more structured, particularly amongst the elite. Often in historical romance books, you’ll find out just how uncomely it is for a man to abruptly walk up to a lady and strike up a chat. Introductions must first be made, and even after that, some time needs to p[censored] before he can talk to her.

Historical romance novels as a genre can be further divided into subgenres according to period. These include Elizabethan, Native American, Tudor, Viking, Civil War, and Western eras. These books have not declined in po[censored] rity due to the fact that the plots and characters have a huge following and fan base.

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