Prostitution, Victorian England, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, William Holman-Hunt


Traditional views of the Victorian period are distinguished by the triumph of middle class respectability. However, a deeper look at Victorian England reveals it as an age of double standards. While notorious for strict prudish values and public repression of sexuality, nineteenth-century Britain was also Europe's leader in prostitution and sexual freedom. While publicly practicing staunch morals, society privately attempted to turn a blind eye from the streets where respectable husbands and militia forgot their prudent lifestyle and engaged with various ladies of the night.