Monday, 5 November 2012

Monday; Bookshelf;


...finished reading  "the RUINS  of  LACE" by Iris Anthony. A mesmerizing story, explores the intricate tangle of fleeting beauty, mad obsession and always hope.

From a note to the reader;  ...there were those who made lace and those who wore it. Some paid  with gold for it and some made it under the most cruel and miserable circumstances.

Girls were chosen and taken into convents at the age of six  to learn the making of lace. They worked long hours, no fire no light, as ashes and soot might have soiled the lace. Mostly those girls went blind before the age of thirty and were hunched from their work. When they could not work anymore because of blindness, and did not have a family to take them in, they were thrown outside of the convent where they were abused as prostitutes for a crust of bread.
 In 1636 King Louis XIII of France prohibited lace. Lace was smuggled through Europe for more than two centuries from Flanders to France....


  1. That looks like an interesting read. I had aunts who were lace-hands in Nottingham in the early part of the 20th century. Of course things had moved on somewhat by then. They were quite respectable.

    1. Marilyn, this happened in Flanders in the 17th century. I guess we can not imagine how hard life was for some, I mean especially for children.

  2. Oh my -- what a harsh existence and sad commentary on how little compassion was exemplified by the church at that time.

  3. Meri, yes it was, dreadful. It is an interesting story, well written. It was also a time when there were rules what sort of clothing people were allowed to wear. The lowly born had to wear drab colours and coarse material.