The Regency period in England


The Regency is a period ruled by elegance and etiquette. It is a romantic world full of balls and duels, Corinthians and debutantes, Almack’s and Vauxhall Gardens, and rakes reformed by love. And yet it have been debated that most of the novels based on ‘regency” romance are set in 1823 and not set in the Regency at all!

Regency era

The Regency lasted a mere nine years, from February 1811 until January 1820. In 1810, George III was taken seriously ill. He was declared incapable of ruling because of mental incapacity and the Regency Act was passed the following year making his son George Prince Regent to rule in his stead. The Regency lasted until George III’s death in 1820 when the Regent became King George IV and was able to rule in his own right.

Regency feel

According to Rachel Knowles :”So why is it that not all Regency romances are set in the period 1811 to 1820? And if they are not set in the Regency, why do we call them Regency romances? I believe the answer lies in the ‘feel’ of the Regency. The term Regency has come to represent a much wider period of time than the nine years to which it actually relates.”


The Romantic Movement was well-established by the time the Regency started. This was a time that was rich in literature, both poetry and prose. It was the time of the Romantic poets like Wordsworth, Byron, Coleridge and Shelley and the Romantic novelist, Sir Walter Scott. Constable and Turner were painting and Beethoven was composing. The Regency finished, but the Romantics went on.

Andrianna Oktoniati, A4

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