Monday, May 02, 2005

Penny Dreadfuls AKA Vinegar Valentines

hey...we all know there is nothing completely new left under the sun...but to those of you who think some of our cards are ill-tempered, we would just like to say we are simply upholding tradition. Way back in th 1800s insulting cards had their place in the world and we intend to help them reclaim their rightful throne and due respect! Long live the Penny Dreadful!

Penny Dreadfuls also known as Vinegar Valentines

A new type of Valentine's Day Card that was not full of love and adoration appeared in 1858. They were known as Vinegar Valentine's or Penny Dreadfuls. They were exactly that, 1¢. For the most part they were made from very inexpensive paper and poorly printed.They were not beautiful, ornate or romantic, quite the opposite. The artwork was uncomplicated, the colors were simple and they were filled with verses of humorous and rhyming insults, insulting everyone and anyone, teachers, spinsters, friends and other lovelorn individuals. Most often they were sent anonymously to people who were not liked. To make it even worse, in the 1800's the receiver was the person who paid for the postage, so these poor individuals paid to be insulted! Even a few of the prominent printers such as Raphael Tuck began printing insult Valentine's. They were popular for years and were sent up until the mid 1900's.
A few Vinegar Valentine examples:
"A monkey in a jungle, Is looking for his face, That someone must have wished on you, And gave him yours in place."
"'You never have a steady job, You're always out of work; Your energy is all used up In finding ways to shirk."
"From girls of these fast modern days A little boldness we expect, And when within due bounds it's kept Not every one will object; But o'er all bounds you go so far With your loud ways and saucy face, We simply feel disgust and scorn To see such lack of womanly grace."