This book presents a delightful and fascinating social history of Victorians at leisure, told through the letters, diaries, journals and novels of 19th-century men and women from the author of the bestselling The Victorian House. Imagine a world where only one in five people owns a book, where just one in ten has a knife or a fork - a world where five people out of every six do not own a cup to hold a hot drink. That was what England was like in the early eighteenth century. Yet by the close of the nineteenth century, the Industrial Revolution had brought with it not just factories, railways, mines and machines but also brought fashion, travel, leisure and pleasure. Leisure became an industry, a cornucopia of excitement for the masses. And it was spread by newspapers, by advertising, by promotions and publicity - all eighteenth, not twentieth century creations.