Nineteenth-Century Disability:  Cultures & Contexts

1837 to 1860

Items in the 1837 to 1860 Collection

The Principles of Hydropathy

Ben Rhydding is finely situated on the slope of Rombald's Moor,[1] at an elevation of five hundred feet above the level of the sea. Whether from the natural advantages of its position, the variety and beauty of the scenery in its neighbourhood, the…

American Notes

It is strange to watch the faces of the blind, and see how free they are from all concealment of what is passing in their thoughts; observing which, a man with eyes may blush to contemplate the mask he wears. Allowing for one shade of anxious…

Life in the Sickroom

[from “Dedication”]: I do not believe it is possible for persons in health and action to trace, as we can, the agencies for good that are going on in life and the world.  Or, if they can, it seems as if the perception were accompanied by a…

Olive

By her stature she might have been two years old, but her face was like that of a child of ten or twelve—so thoughtful, so grave. Her limbs were small and wasted, but exquisitely delicate. The same might be said of her features; which, though thin,…

The Blind Girl
John Everett Millais’s (1829-1896) The Blind Girl (1856) shows a blind musician with a concertina in her lap, and a little girl, presumed to be her sister, resting on the roadside after a rainstorm. They are on their way toward Winchelsea, whose…

The Crippled Street-Seller of Nutmeg Graters

I now give an example of one of the classes driven to the streets by utter inability to labour.  I have already spoken of the sterling independence of some of these men possessing the strongest claims to our sympathy and charity, and yet…

Hide and Seek

As the course of her education proceeded, many striking peculiarities became developed in Madonna's disposition, which seemed to be all more or less produced by the necessary influence of her affliction on the formation of her character. The social…

The Lost Senses

Any one who has spent a considerable portion of time under peculiar, or at least undescribed, circumstances, must have been very unobservant if he has nothing to relate in which the public would be interested. It may be, indeed, that such a person…

The Bertrams

A lion-hearted old warrior was Miss Ruff,—one who could not stand with patience the modern practice of dallying in the presence of her enemies' guns. She had come there for a rubber of whist[1]—to fight the good fight—to conquer or to die, and…

Comfort for Invalids

[Text of Advertisement] The Lancet,] THE LANCET CENTRAL ADVERTISER. [March 22, 1856. By Her Majesty’s Letters Patent Comfort for Invalids 8 Denmark St. Soho London. J. ALDERMAN, Nephew and Successor to Mr. CHAPMAN, begs most respectfully…

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