Question: Why did Victorians do post-mortem photos?

Photographs of loved ones taken after they died may seem morbid to modern sensibilities. But in Victorian England, they became a way of commemorating the dead and blunting the sharpness of grief. Victorian life was suffused with death.

Why did Victorian mothers hide in photos?

Hidden mother photography is a genre of photography common in the Victorian era in which young children were photographed with their mother present but hidden in the photograph. It arose from the need to keep children still while the photograph was taken due to the long exposure times of early cameras.

Are Victorian post mortem pictures real?

The thing that makes these photographs so precious is that they arent like scientific photos of corpses. Instead, these photos are staged, with the deceased sometimes placed with their favorite objects or propped up in a chair – almost as if they were still alive.

Why were Victorians obsessed with death?

As can be seen, up to the highest levels of society, the mourning ritual was pervasive. Another reason why the Victorians were so ritualistic in their methods of grieving is because death was simply a way of life due to the high mortality rates (Hunter).

What is a Victorian child?

Victorian children lived very different lives to children today. Poor children often had to work to earn money for their family. This lead to major problems with overcrowding and poverty. Disease and early death were common for both rich and poor people.

What are old death photos called?

post-mortem photos Unlike many portraits, which were taken in photo studios, post-mortem photos were usually taken at home. As the trend of death portraits took hold, families put effort into preparing their deceased relatives for the photoshoot.

What jobs did a Victorian child do?

What types of jobs did they do? Because they were considered cheap labor Victorian children were in high demand for many types of jobs including mining, factory work, street sweepers, clothing and hat makers, chimney sweeps, farming, textile mills, servants, and sadly, prostitution.

What happens to the human eye after death?

About two hours after death, the cornea becomes hazy or cloudy, turning progressively more opaque over the next day or two. After death, blood cells in the body break down and release potassium. In the eye, this process happens more slowly and at a more predictable rate than in the blood.

Why did they take pictures with the dead?

Early photos were sometimes referred to as “mirrors with memories,” and the Victorians saw photographing the dead as one way of preserving the memory of a family member. Photos of the dead were kept as keepsakes, displayed in homes, sent to friends and relatives, worn inside lockets, or even carried as pocket mirrors.

What was half mourning?

Mourning clothes were a familys outward display of their inner feelings. After a specified period the crape could be removed – this was called slighting the mourning. The color of cloth lightened as mourning went on, to grey, mauve, and white – called half-mourning.

Reach out

Find us at the office

Dayberry- Antinucci street no. 75, 92993 Belfast, United Kingdom Northern Ireland

Give us a ring

Daan Hilger
+47 129 536 826
Mon - Fri, 9:00-17:00

Tell us about you