What Do Hypochondriacs Eat?

From Mrs Bennet in Pride and Prejudice who complains constantly about her “nerves” and is “taken ill immediately” when she is informed of Lydia’s elopement with Mr Wickham, to the never present but much discussed Mrs Churchill in Emma, whose illnesses the narrator notes “never occurred but for her own convenience”, hypochondriacs frequently appear in Jane Austen’s novels.  Continue reading “What Do Hypochondriacs Eat?”

Forbidden Fruit

In my previous two posts on Jacobean revenge drama I explored the way the playwrights use food for nefarious purposes or to symbolise corruption (see here and here). In Paradise Lost (published 1667), John Milton retells in a long epic poem the story of the fall of Adam and Eve, a narrative with food at its heart. Continue reading “Forbidden Fruit”