March 23rd, 2014

Late-Victorian aristocratic mourning

Setting: Manchester (or surrounding area), England, 1892

Characters: Two siblings, an unmarried man (23) and an unmarried woman (25) (yes I realize she is practically a spinster, that is on purpose), and their wealthy baronet father (65ish). The daughter lives with the father. The son may or may not, I'm still fussing with that. Both children are on good terms with their father. The father dies of natural causes and leaves no surviving spouse.

Question: How do the siblings' lives change after their dad kicks it, and how quickly can things return to relative normalcy? How would mourning a parent as an adult compare to mourning a parent as a child? What sort of public face would the siblings be expected to put on their grief? Would mourning isolate the siblings from society, and would the sister be more isolated than the brother, and at what point would it be considered polite for them to start going out in public again?

According to the research I've done so far, mourning would last for at least a year and involve lots of black crepe clothes (for the lady), black armband/hatband (for the gent), and black-edged stationary (for everyone?). I'm guessing the daughter is expected to mourn harder than the son in the eyes of society because that's how these things usually go, and that the son will be expected to bottle up his emotions.

I've already looked through the ~funerals tag in this comm, as well as the related Victorian tags. This taught me about hair jewelry, among other things, but I did not find concrete answers to the specific questions asked above.

Bonus points for recommending a reference book a la the Victorian Life and Times series. (I could have sworn they had a volume on funerary practices, but alas, I cannot find it.) A lot of the books I've checked out so far have focused on early to mid-Victorian practices, and I need information relating to the 1890s specifically. I'd prefer something I could check out of a library rather than something on Google books, but any leads would be helpful.

Need the name of a Parisian Street in Montparnasse that was popular in the 1930's but not now.

My novel takes place in modern times and pre-World War II in Paris, France.

I need the name of a street or area inside Montparnasse that would have been a popular for a group of young occult practitioners to gather, preferably a street or an area known for having a wealthy bohemian air, but, in modern times, has fallen into decay. It needs to be located off the beaten tourist-track, a street or cul-de-sac that would be easy to miss.

I have Googled Montparnasse, Montparnasse history, Montparnasse 1930's, popular areas in Paris in 1930's, as well as several travel guides to Paris, Paris Eyewitness Guide, Paris, the Secret History,