Behold the Manliest Exercises Known to Man!
Judging by the illustrations contained in Walker’s Manly Exercises (!), the author, “Craven,” was certainly cravin’ something and we don’t think it was a 19th century energy bar. Indeed, the volume is full of tights-wearing dandies engaged in all sorts of muscle-building pursuits! In particular, we love the jaunty rope climbing style advocated by the author. If only some sort of classy Merchant & Ivory film team would come along and create an epic sports footage montage lovingly recreating these most manly of all Victorian exercises. British Film Institute, we command you to make it happen!
About the Book: Walker’s manly exercises : containing rowing, sailing, riding, driving, hunting, shooting, and other manly sports / the whole carefully rev., or written, by “Craven.” London:H.G. Bohn, 1860.
Call number: 796 W178 DUODECIMO
Get Those Firm Elbows Dandies Love!
Visionary exercise enthusiast James Madison Watson knew an unpleasant truth about the perils of Victorian life — it left little time for the development of crucial elbow muscles. Fortunately his landmark book Elocution, Calisthenics, and Gymnastics rectified such an horrifying oversight in 19th century fitness campaigns. Ever a completist, Watson provides theme songs for the training of each bodily region. It’s like old school Jazzercise!
Not only will your elbows look sizzlin’ in a variety of frock coats, but your newly toned elbows may come in handy if you ever encounter the self-described “hermit of Gloucester”s raccoon named Satan.
Call no.: 613.71 W339
Location: George Peabody Library