Victorian Woman to Her Suitor, 1888

Can you not see the flames of passion in my eyes?

My Dearest Edward,

Our meeting of Tuesday past filled me with delight. I don’t think I’ve ever had an experience so intense with another person. When my chaperone read the letter from your father’s messenger, I literally clutched at my pearls and swooned. I’ve never swooned so much in my life. And when you smiled at me from across the ballroom at the Duchess’s Manor, I felt my heart skip a beat. I cannot wait until we are married.

Even though I am nearly an old maid of 19, and you an old man of 28, I know our love will keep us strong into our later years. When finally, we had a chance to be alone in the parlour, with just you, me, the flickering of the lights, your assistant, my maid, your groomsman, and my soccer coach, and you brushed lightly against my hand, my face was flushed, as I’m sure you noticed. And don’t think I didn’t realize that when you were talking about the importance of attractive ankles in a wife, you had very nearly caught a glimpse of mine. Trust me, Sir Marcus, when I say that ladies of repute do not show the very bottom of the third of their seven layers of undergarments by accident.

I do so hope we may reconvene at a later time. My father is anxious I marry. If I may be uncouth, let’s just say I can’t wait to spend an hour undressing, so that you will only need another hour or so to finish undressing me, and we may lie together once, perhaps twice if we do not conceive a boy.

Yours in most passionate romance,

Elizabeth Ardle Birksby, Marquess of Donaldsforth


After the discovery of this letter, Elizabeth Ardle Birksby, otherwise known as the “Slut of Donaldsforth,” was cut from high society and became widely known for being a cheap flirt and an easy lay. Nasty rumors began to spread about Miss Birksby, like that she would dine in a house on the same block as men she did not even know.

Her reputation ruined and the gallant Edward unable to even look her in the eye (which would have been considered quite forward), Miss Birksby abandoned all pretense and began work as a governess, which was akin to being a prostitute in those days. But even for the people of well-read London, Miss Birksby proved too much (“entirely too much,” wrote one gentleman in his diary).

She was let go from her position at the McArdle house after a housemaid named Evie revealed to the mistress of the house that  Miss Birksby’s favorite tea flavor was Earl Grey.

Miss Birksby died penniless and alone at a charming cottage in Bath. In a final letter to her sister, she revealed that she believed she was a sex addict as she enjoyed the feeling of cleaning out her ears with a q-tip “a little too much.”



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2 responses to “Victorian Woman to Her Suitor, 1888

  1. Rebecca

    Hey, can we get an NSFW label on these racy posts? Jeez!

  2. brandy

    oh, well done!

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