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A History of Courtship: 800 Years of Seduction
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A History of Courtship: 800 Years of Seduction

3.09  ·  Rating details ·  91 ratings  ·  22 reviews
Tania O’Donnell takes the reader on a journey from medieval Courtly Love, through to the sexual license of the Restoration, and Victorian propriety. Pick up historical ‘dating tips,’ from how to court (or be courted), write romantic love letters, give and receive gifts, propose and pose as a sighing swain.
The book takes a historical approach to the problem of finding a mat
Paperback, 152 pages
Published January 9th 2018 by Skyhorse (first published January 2nd 2018)
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 ·  91 ratings  ·  22 reviews

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Jun 05, 2017 rated it liked it
While this book read a bit like a research paper, I did learn quite a few fun facts and historical antecdotes regarding love and courting. I enjoyed the illustrations which highlighted some of the points that were addressed in the book.

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Feb 28, 2017 rated it it was ok
Book: A History of Courtship
Author: Tania O’Donnell
Publisher: Pen and Sword History
Genre: History
Publication Date: January 27,2017
Rating: Image result for 2.5 stars

Image result for A History of Courtship tania o'donnell

*Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for giving me a copy of this in exchange for my honest review*

My Thoughts
This book was a thematic historical look into 800 years of courting techniques and relationships. It goes through many topics including courting, how to propose, and even writing love letters and giving gifts to one’s lover.
As the published su
Jan 25, 2017 rated it it was ok
Starting off by titling your book “800 Years of Seduction,” you are promising the readers a great deal of information. Instead readers of this particular book are left with a series of little bits of information from a mainly European, and predominantly United Kingdom view on seduction. While there a plethora of information gleaned from other books and several different sources are given out throughout the text, there seems to be very little real flow to the book.
If the book was able to focus
Jan 13, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: netgalley, 2017
When I asked Tania O'Donnell's book A History of Courtship, I was really looking forward to read a good entertaining book about courtship and seduction history, about tradition and customs. But ...

All I got was superficial survey of some tradition, some book references. Then there were some information about fashion, about customs, how church has been involved in courtship, how clerks encouraged higher class men to rape common woman, how there was a time when for marring someone was not needed m
Gemma (Non Fic Books)
A really great little overview of historic courtship. I'd have loved more detail and a much longer book but it's a great place to start on this subject. ...more
Feb 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley
The title of this book seems really promising. I was hoping this was an in-depth look at courtship over the centuries with some solid research and interesting concepts I didn't know before.

Instead what I got was a surface level look at the courting practices of the super rich in England. Specifically Regency era London. It really felt like an overview of things I've picked up on from years of reading regency romances. At a few points the vox populi are mentioned but not very often and not to te
Apr 28, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Badly organized

The book was mildly interesting, but it seemed to lack real research and it the stories or examples she included were only tangentially related to the chapter topic. I got the idea that she just threw in anecdotes and historical facts that she found interesting. For example, in her chapter in married life she suddenly dives into lesbianism and tells a story about a well-known lesbian in England. Seems like incidences of homosexuality should get its own chapter, but it doesn't, not
Aug 24, 2020 rated it liked it
if you’re looking for a eurocentric look at courtship from ~1500 to ~1900, this is the book for you. the title is rather inaccurate, given we only get about half that much.

it’s also a very surface level look at courtship, though a good starting point if you want to know exactly what kind of things to research.

the writing itself is accessible, and the information is nicely organized too.

still, it’s a lovely look of English (& early American) courtship, & a handy reference for that particular t
Reza Amiri Praramadhan
Jun 24, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-ebooks
In our world that is moving faster than ever nowadays, the notion of courtship seems to be a laughable thing, especially in face of hooking-up culture. However, courtship is a long embedded tradition, with hundreds of years behind it. From falling in love to the path of marriage, there are some ways which still continue to be practiced until now. This book is quite short, filled with interesting facts about how men and women of the past interacted with each other in the name of love (or some oth ...more
I really enjoyed this! Although it is structured like a research paper, it is far more readable for the non-academic (it’s like pop-history). I learned a lot and would love to explore the topic (and it’s sub-categories) in more depth. I liked that the author didn’t spend much time being judgmental about the people and actions of the past — I read it to learn about history, not really compare it to the present.
Feb 15, 2021 rated it it was ok
This was a very basic book on the subject and frankly not nearly as organized or as in depth as I'd have liked. The book also used famous time period fiction as examples and resources for the very real subject matter it was supposed to be writing about. Over all, I found this book a disappointment. ...more
Therese Catalano
Apr 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Seduction has nothing to do with it

I didn't learn anything shocking. Marriage in the past & let's be honest even some times now was a business arrangement where finances & stability came into play. It's just that women now have alot more to say about who they choose or if they choose any one at all.
MaryAnn Lockey
Always Interesting

Many little off the cuff tidbits make this an interesting read. Maybe more fascinating are the sketches in the book. You always think of Victorian and Edwardian times as being straight laced but the illustrations certainly weren't.
Mar 29, 2020 rated it liked it
The title of the book is a little deceiving, saying it's "800 years of seduction" isn't entirely true. It's mostly about the 18th and 19th century with a few stops along the lines of earlier times and even less after that. It was a fun read, but it isn't exactly what it says on the tin! ...more
Aug 08, 2018 rated it liked it
I enjoyed it. It's not a deep dive, which is clear by the size of the book, but it's a fun and easy read through. Some of it is laughable, some is far to relatable, and some is just as strange as modern weirdness. ...more
Mar 22, 2018 rated it it was ok
I came away from reading this with a handful of interesting trivia tidbits, and a desire to skim it quickly as the fluff between the tidbits was more conversational than I had hoped
Jul 03, 2018 rated it liked it
An enjoyable short read on the history of courtship.
Jenna Owens
Jan 15, 2021 rated it liked it
This was a cute, quick read with lots of interesting tidbits and images. However, I do wish the title reflected the fact that this “history” is limited to that of Europe and the United States.
"A History of Courtship" is a survey of courtship practices--mainly from the 1300s to the 1800s in England. The author described how couples met, beauty and clothing fads, acceptable gifts, improper behavior, the role of chaperons, love poems and letters, and areas of conflict after marriage. She also looked at the differences in practices between the rich and the poor. She described some scandals and other unusual stories to illustrate various behaviors. The material came from sources like diar ...more
Lil's Vintage World
Jul 06, 2017 rated it liked it
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