From silly hats to hysteria, the Victorian Era has seen some interesting to downright peculiar trends, but one of the strangest fads to have swept the city of London was that of limping. Yes, limping.
BBC has an interesting rundown of the Alexandra Limp,
the Dougie of the 19th century the ridiculous "fashion" trend that many women adhered to. The odd swagger originated with Alexandra of Denmark, bride of the Prince of Wales who basically dictated fashion. She fell ill with rheumatic fever, and ended up sporting a limp. Soon the limp became all the craze:
At first, it was a DIY affair. Women would simply grab odd shoes to help them totter effectively. But canny shopkeepers soon realised there was a pretty penny to be made from what otherwise would be retail's most unshiftable line - wildly mismatched footwear, with one high heel, and one low.
What did ordinary people make of it all? Not a great deal, if this 1869 report from the North British Mail is anything to go by. "A monstrosity has made itself visible among the female promenaders in Princes Street," it seethed. "It is as painful as it is idiotic and ludicrous.
The whole piece is worth checking out if anything for the quote "Why that's the Alexandra limp! How ugly!"