Punch,  57 (1869), 162.

The Torments of Tight-Lacing

A Victim


Letter, Spoof


Gender, Health, Disease, Controversy

    Identifying herself as 'a young lady', the writer tells Mr Punch that she has to tie herself as tightly as she can owing to the fashion for 'small waists'. She complains that her stays are causing her headaches and other pains, and corroborates 'what the doctors say' about the physiological consequences of tight-lacing. Grumbles that her stays prevent her from enjoying such activities as croquet and dancing, and criticises her maid for following the fashion, thereby making herself too ill to work. She concludes miserably by confessing that she would 'rather die than dress out of fashion'.

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