Hidden Treasures Part Three

It’s time for the third installment of our ‘Hidden Treasures’ series. A blog post dedicated to the little snippets of the past that we find hidden inside the pages of our vintage books.

We’ve been running this series for the last few years over on our main website, Bookishly. Think of these blog posts as a mini highlight reel of all the treasures we’ve found so far!

Wihout further ado…

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  1. Steam Train Photograph

We found this old black and white photograph of a steam train either arriving in to or departing from its station. An educated guess would date this picture back to around the 1940s. We wish we had more information than just that. The front of the train shows that it has the number 46455 written on it. Do you guys know if that means anything?

2. List of Destroyed Aircraft

Probably written by an individual who had a keen interest in aircraft. This is an entire list of destroyed aircraft from 1970. Divided in to fatal and non fatal. Pretty interesting!

3. Letter to Jane

Written from her parents. It reads:

‘Dear Jane, many thanks for your letter. Hope the weather improves for you, it was quite warm here on Saturday but colder yesterday, and it is rainy today. We are going to Nanas & Grandpa’s tonight for supper – picking Aunt Kate up on the way. We are going to get the eggs and the paper for you – then hope it has cleared up by the time we get home and I might do the washing. How do you like golf – do you think you would like to learn – and do you think Daddy and I could manage it. Daddy is just finishing his breakfast so I think that is all the news for now, as we are going down to Henley. Much love, Mummy and Daddy x x x x x’

Letters like this always make you want to find out more of their story; who they were, why they weren’t together, etc!

4. Sunday Times Book Voucher

A voucher for a book of choice for J.P Musker. The front of the voucher has a particularly lovely quote about reading for you book lovers out there.

‘Let your bookcases and your shelves be your gardens and your pleasure grounds. Pluck the fruit that grows therein, gather the roses, the spices and the myrrh.’

5. Santorini Postcard

Dated back to 1988 (nearly thirty years ago!) This postcard was sent from an Ingrid and Joseph to a Matuto. The photo on the front shows Santorini looking just as picturesque and beautiful as it does now. It reads:

Dear Matuto,

Our short holiday here is flying. Joseph says it is compulsory for us to swim everyday. On some beaches the pebbles really hurt, but the water and colour are great.

Our love to you, Ingrid and Joseph

Ingrid and Joseph, we are so jealous of past you.

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What’s the coolest thing you’ve found hidden inside a vintage book?

 

 

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Literature’s Most Memorable Teachers

We all have that one teacher who we can remember from school, be it primary, secondary or even university.  That one person who made us feel like we could achieve anything or gave us that extra 5 minutes to finish our work! This got us thinking. Teachers are such an important part of our childhood – you’ll always remember a brilliant teacher, but you’ll also remember the teacher who scared the living daylights out of you. We’ve searched through our favourite books to bring you some of literature’s most memorable teachers, whether it’s for all the right or wrong reasons!

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Miss Temple  – Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

As the teacher in charge of Lockwood Institute, Miss Temple is the only one who can protect the students from the cruelty of Mr Brocklehurst.  Although she does not have much of a character, Miss Temple is Jane’s refuge, caring and encouraging her to do the best she can for her education.

Ms Frizzel  – The Magic School Bus

Valerie Felicity Frizzle is the eccentric science teacher at Walkerville Elementary School and she uses her magic school bus to teach her class.  Although her students think she is a bit odd, with her red hair and pet lizard, they all love and respect her.

Minerva McGonagall  – Harry Potter Series

Head of Gryffinor and a Transfiguration Professor, McGonagall comes across as a stern rigorous disciplinarian.  However, she takes to Harry and often assists him indirectly with activities that are not strictly within the rules of Hogwarts.

Mr Brunner/Chiron  – Percy Jackson Series

Percy’s favourite teacher, Mr Brunner, teaches Latin and he sets his expectations for Percy high.  When he realises that Mr Brunner is also Chiron, a very smart centaur, Percy helps him run the camp which ultimately helps him understand his own prophecy.

Miss Trunchbull – Matilda by Roald Dahl

Memorable for all the wrong reasons, an all round despicable human – let alone a terrible teacher! She definitely has a lasting impact on any young reader, or perhaps viewer if you’ve seen the film or theatre production. What made her particularly awful was the way she abused her power; she got a thrill off making innocent children feel intimidated and belittled. Miss Trunchbull makes you grateful for that strict maths teacher you had who was always a bit too happy to give out detentions. We’d take line writing over Chokey anyday!

Professor Dumbledore – Harry Potter Series

Wise, intelligent, and brave. Albus Dumbledore was respected by his pupils and colleagues in equal measure. The man had class, and he used his position as Headmaster for all the right reasons. Not only did he want the best for his students on an academic level, he cared for them on a personal level too. He wanted each of them to have the opportunities and choice to become good, moral, and decent people. Dumbledore was, and we don’t use this word lightly, a legend. He had great taste in sweets too. Sherbet lemon anyone?

Miss Honey – Matilda by Roald Dahl

Sweet as her name, and the complete opposite of her horrible Aunt Trunchbull. Miss Honey cared for her students immensely. She used the very little power she had to build each one of them up – making them feel they were capable of anything they put their minds to. A great teacher is one who believes in you when the rest of the world doubts you.

Miss Stacy – Anne of Green Gables by L.M Montgomery

Miss Muriel Stacy makes this list because she, as a teacher, always prioritised what was most important: the happiness and the learning experience of her students. She was liberal and progressive and ignored the many critics who deemed her unorthodox and unprofessional. Miss Stacy believed in what she taught and the way she taught, and her students loved her for it. She was an inspiration and mentor to many of her pupils, particularly Anne, who chose a career in teaching because of her.

Lucy Snowe Vilette by Charlotte Bronte

Lucy defeated the odds that were stacked against her from an early age, and used this experience of hardship to make her the best teacher she could be. Lucy sees the hidden strengths in those around her, and focuses on bringing them to the surface. Intelligent and hardworking, the progress she makes in her teaching career speaks volumes.

Professor Snape – Harry Potter Series

Snape’s a tricky one. A good teacher? No. A memorable teacher? Yes. Snape is a terrible teacher for a number of reasons, the main one being the way he belittles his students. He makes his less able students feel stupid, and his more able students feel afraid of progressing. A good teacher encourages their students to keep moving forward, and he halts students firmly in their tracks. Having said that, Snape’s loyalty, bravery, and intelligence is undeniable. He sacrificed himself for Harry and the good of the Wizarding World. His love for Lily meant he protected a boy who was a daily reminder of the torment and humiliation he faced as a student himself. That surely has to count for something.

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Which fictional teacher do you find most memorable, and why? What about real world teachers? If you have someone you’d love to say thank you to, you can shop our teacher  gifts here.

Book Lover Tea Party Decorations

If you didn’t already know (which is unlikely as we’ve not stopped talking about it) it’s our tenth birthday this month! We’ve done a tonne of things to celebrate – flash sales, discounts, lucky dips, competitions etc. However the highlight above all else was our party last week , and we need to tell you all about it.

We decided early on that the theme would be a literary inspired tea party. Books, cakes and tea are three of our favourite things – how could it not be?  

We hired a beautiful village hall in the countryside and went in on the bookish decorations . Book page table runners, bookish bunting, vintage books as centrepieces, we even had a cake made out of book pages! We’re super lucky to have a creative team who were able to work their magic. 

We thought we’d share with you a few of our favourite photographs from the day and hopefully give you some inspo for your own bookish party. 

Let us know what you think! We’d love to know. 🙂

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Thanks to @marjorymoonphotography for the wonderful pictures!

There’s still time to celebrate with us! Head over to our website to find out more.

What You Need To Know About The Bookishly Book Clubs

The Bookishly Book Club consists of three unique book subscriptions where members are sent a literary parcel of happy post each month. With prices starting from just £10 each month, our book clubs offer the perfect excuse for you to sit down, relax and get stuck into a really great book.

Let’s tell you a little bit more about each one…

COFFEE & VINTAGE BOOK CLUB

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This one’s for the caffeine lovers! Each parcel contains a surprise vintage paperback and a packet of freshly roasted ground coffee (enough for four to five cups). From £10 each month.

CLASSIC OF THE MONTH CLUB

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Our newest subscription is growing to become a firm favourite among our subscribers! A classic book from literature with our exclusively designed dust jacket and a delicious themed tea to go alongside it (we offer coffee too if that’s more your thing). We’re talking about the likes of Little Women, Jane Eyre, Persuasion etc. If beautiful books and classic literature are your thing then this one’s for you. From £13 each month.

TEA & VINTAGE BOOK CLUB

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Delicious tea, vintage book and STATIONERY (exclusively designed by us). You can never have too much stationery, right? Our original book club subscription and still a fave among our subscribers. The vintage book you receive each month is a lucky dip from our collection, which kind of adds to the charm! From £13 each month.

If you need a little extra reading time in your life then pop over to our website to find out a little bit more about our subscriptions. You won’t be disappointed! 🙂

 

7 Quotes to Celebrate 200 Years of Walt Whitman

31st May celebrates the two hundredth anniversary of poet, Walt Whitman. Best known for Leaves of Grass, Whitman was an interesting character who lived an equally interesting life – from starting work aged eleven and educating himself to become a teacher at age seventeen , to anonymously reviewing his own book in the paper in order to cause a stir and drive sales.

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Whitman’s work was (and still is) admired by thousands (Bram Stoker and his friends actually called themselves the Walt Whitmanites). To celebrate such a momentous anniversary, we thought it would be nice to share with you some of our favourites lines from his beautiful poetry collection.

“I have perceiv’d that to be with those I like is enough.”

“Day by day and night by night we were together. All else has long been forgotten by me.”

“To be surrounded by beautiful, curious, breathing, laughing flesh is enough.”

“Happiness, knowledge, not in another place but this place, not for another hour but this hour.”

“I exist as I am. That is enough.”

“Will you come travel with me? Shall we stick by each other as long as we live?”

“Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes.”

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Do you have a favourite Walt Whitman poem?

Hidden Treasures Part Two

Welcome to the second part of our Hidden Treasures series. A mini highlight reel of the blog series we’ve been running on our main website for the last couple of years. It’s all about those little treasures we find hidden within our vintage books – from tickets and invoices through to photographs, love letters and so much more! You can read part one of this series right here, but for now here’s our latest batch of favourites.

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We absolutely love finding old, forgotten love notes in our vintage books. Honest and real, they’re like a little secret snippet into the past. Here are a couple of our favourites:

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I love you darling: miss your miserable wife just a little – I won’t deserve it, but try just the same. See you Saturday. I love you, I love you. God bless, Jill. X X X X

Ah, our hearts.

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Always allowed to be tired. Didn’t mean to look shocked at being told to go home. Love you very much you fool you know and I wanted to tell you and didn’t take the chance. Bonne nuit.  

I love you, I love you, I love you.

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This photograph is of a very handsome chap named Ken and was taken in 1929. He signed it in his handwriting at the bottom of the picture. It’s likely that Ken was based in Llandudno, Wales at some point in his life as this photograph was taken there by a J.H Baxter.

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How fitting that we found a phone number, written in lipstick, at the back of this vintage James Bond book! We absolutely loved that. The front cover is also pretty cool to look at. We’d love to have known the background story to this particular treasure!

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We loved this little piece of writing we found by Dianne Paice. How amazing would it be if we were able to find her or one of her relatives? It would be lovely to reunite her with an old piece of work, and there’s plenty of information to go off lol! It reads:

“Dianne Paice is my name. I have a bookcase full of books. I have one sister and a guinea pig called Ella May. My teacher’s name is Miss Russell. I have lots of friends. I enjoy games and my favourite games are netball and football. My favourite subject at school is History. I also enjoy English and some Maths like saying my tables to someone and writing them down on paper. My family and I live in Banbury. When I am old enough to work, I want to be a stable-hand.

This whole thing is made better by the fact that she’s a fellow book lover. Amazing.

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The best bookmark of all time. Bronwen, we feel you! ‘THIS IS MY BOOKMARK, SO DON’T!!! REMOVE IT. PLEASE.’

What Should I Read Next? Our Current Reads.

Have you ever found yourself in a bit of a book slump? You’ve just finished a great book, but now you’re lacking inspiration and struggling to decide what you should read next… Trust us, we’ve been there!

We’ve written this blog post in the hope of offering up a little bit of inspo on what book to read next! We asked around at Bookishly HQ to see what a few of us were currently reading and compiled it all into a handy little list…

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DIOR – Dior

A super interesting read written by Christian Dior himself. This autobiography gives you an in-depth behind the scenes account of the workings of a great fashion house, along with individual, detailed steps on what it takes to put a clothing collection together. Not light reading exactly, but fascinating nonetheless.

THIS IS GOING TO HURT – Adam Kay

This book sees writer Adam Kay share entries from the journal he kept during his time working as a doctor in the NHS. Hilarious at times (we’ll never think of Kinder Eggs in the same way), and heartbreaking at others. This book gives a brilliant insight into what it’s like working on the frontline of the NHS.  

SIMON & THE HOMOSAPIEN AGENDA – Becky Albertalli

YA fans, this book is for you! We follow the story of Simon Spier, a gay sixteen-year-old high school student who’s yet to come out to his family and friends. Simon’s life gets a little more interesting when he falls for an anonymous classmate that he’s been talking to online, resulting in a string of events that are hilarious, terrifying and life-changing.

THE SUMMER BOOK – Tove Jansson

A story following the relationship between an elderly artist and her young grand-daughter, and the summer they spend together on a tiny island in the Gulf of Finland. Filled with wisdom and humour, this beautifully written story is a truly life-affirming read. (Bonus! The English language film version is being shot later this year, starring Julie Walters.)

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Any book recommendations you’d like to send our way? We’d love to hear from you; discovering new books is one of our favourite things!