People in Victorian England were fanatical about kaleidoscopes


[Read the post]


So in essence, the predecessor of Instagram?


Perhaps all websites could be improved with a 30 degree angle mirror.


I hate when that happens. We need more dedicated hobby horse lanes! Share the road.


The Victorian era didn’t begin until 1837 [at least, that’s the start of her reign]. Victoria wasn’t even born until 1819. </pedantry>


Welcome to life as a human being.


Poor guy. Too bad he didn’t think of it the other way around, as the kaleidoscope revealing a beauty hidden in “unsightly” bits of broken glass. E’en the finest gems sparkleth not in darkness.



No different today. The streets are full of people staring at their kaleidoscopes. It doesn’t matter whether they’re by Apple or Samsung; same effect. Riding a hobby horse is just too risky these days.


The title of the illustration is ‘Human Nonsense’. The joke is on the dandy on the hobby horse as well. (The hipster on the fixie.)


My theory is that the Victorians were just desperately bored and didn’t have our awesome technology for useless distraction.

The ones wealthy enough not to be dying from colonialism or working 18-hour days from childhood to early death, at least. Old-timey first world problems, as it were.

See also: the shocking popularity of parlor games in the same period.


Hey, in my neighborhood, I often sight a person peering into their kaleidoscope WHILE riding their hobby horse. Boggles.

closed #13

This topic was automatically closed after 5 days. New replies are no longer allowed.