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Jenna Jaxon

“Auld Lang Syne”– New Year’s Celebrations in Britain by Jenna Jaxon

The coming of the New Year has been celebrated since well into antiquity, but never has it been so well and truly celebrated than in the British Isles, especially during the Regency period. Many of the customs practiced in England, Scotland, and Ireland had roots in Ancient Rome (with the Saturnalia), Ancient Scandinavia, and Ancient Celtic cultures.

The New Year’s toast has its origins in the medieval period, when goblets were clinked liberally during the evening while wishing one another “Waes Hael” or “Be Well.” It was called a “toast” because pieces of toasted bread were put into the cups—like croutons—perhaps to enhance the flavor of the drink.

The Vikings celebrated the season of Yule—giving name to our Yule log for Christmas—which comprised what we now call “The Twelve Days of Christmas.”

Many of our New Year’s customs come from the Scottish celebration of Hogmanay. A bonfire is lit to represent several different things: the light of knowledge passing from one year to the next, the putting of darkness of the past behind you and carrying light forward to the future. Continue reading ““Auld Lang Syne”– New Year’s Celebrations in Britain by Jenna Jaxon”

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“Won’t you come to bed, my lord?”

In a vulnerable moment, Alethea Forsythe allows herself to be seduced by a married peer. Now she is with child—and without recourse. Her reputation will soon be in tatters and she will be forced to wed a stranger—unless she takes matters into her own hands.

When Jack Fitzwilliam, the Earl of Manning, is summoned from the House of Pleasure on a matter of importance, he hardly expects to receive a marriage proposal. He’s long been aware of Alethea’s infatuation with him, but at twenty-three, taking on an expectant bride is not in his plans. Yet the desperation in the lady’s lovely eyes overrides his misgivings.

Alethea would not have believed it possible for a man to be too chivalrous. But though her new husband is perfectly amicable in public, he insists they maintain separate quarters. Desperate to possess his heart and prove herself a wife in every way, she boldly reaches out to Jack. And as their unexpected connection between silken sheets is tested by jealousy and misfortune, Jack must decide where honor ends…and true passion begins . . .

 

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