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Love and Dirt

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Love and Dirt

The Marriage of Arthur Munby and Hannah Cullwick



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Love and Dirt: The Marriage of Arthur Munby and Hannah Cullwick by Diane Atkinson
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On 26th May 1854, Arthur Munby met Hannah Cullwick, the day after her 21st birthday. He was a solicitor, working for the Ecclesiastical Commission, a job he loathed. She was a servant, a maid of all work. This first encounter marked the beginning of a relationship which was to endure for more than 50 years. Both of them kept diaries and letters were exchanged throughout their clandestine love affair. Drawing on these documents and Munby's photographs of Hannah, all of which catalogue a tale of sexual obsession - Munby adored seeing Hannah "in her dirt" from scrubbing steps and cleaning chimneys and she reciprocated with a literally slavish devotion - this work paints a picture of the wilder shores of Victorian sexuality. It also tells the story of a deep and lasting love between two extraordinary individuals which breached the barriers of class and intellect that could have divided them and which meant that even after they married they had to keep the relationship hidden from their families and friends.

Author Biography

Diane Atkinson lives in Shoreditch, London, with her husband the artist Patrick Hughes. A historian of women's lives, she is the author of a number of books and has curated several exhibitions at the Museum of London.
Release date NZ
January 2nd, 2004
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
New edition
Illustrations, ports.
Pan Books
Product ID

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