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PBS to Air A VERY BRITISH ROMANCE

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PBS to Air A VERY BRITISH ROMANCE

Celebrate Valentine's Day with Lucy Worsley as she delves into the steamy and seductive history of British romance, uncovering the social, political and cultural forces that shaped ideals of romantic love during the Georgian and Victorian eras - ideals that surprisingly continue to resonate today. A VERY BRITISH ROMANCE WITH LUCY WORSLEY premieres Sundays, February 9 and 16, 2020, 8:00-9:00 p.m. ET (check local listings) on PBS, pbs.org and the PBS App, preceding episodes of MASTERPIECE's new SANDITON.

In Episode 1 (February 9), Lucy's exploration of love's rituals begins in the Georgian age, when the old rules of courtship were being rewritten. Traditionally, marriage had been as much about business as love. Now, a glamorization of romantic love inspired women and men to make their own romantic choices - they could flirt in newly-built assembly rooms, or elope to Gretna Green as an act of romantic rebellion.

The main force of change, however, was the arrival of the novel. Samuel Richardson, Fanny Burney and Jane Austen didn't just map out women's changing desires; they made people seek out the feelings and emotions described in the books in their own lives, permanently changing how their readers felt about love.

In Episode 2 (February 16), Worsley discovers how medieval chivalry shaped Victorian courtship by defining the roles men and women were expected to play and explores the romantic gestures which emerged and continue today. With the arrival of the Industrial Revolution, Valentine's cards were mass-produced in factories and the "penny post" made it affordable to send a written expression of love, cementing this as a customary romantic gesture.

Lucy also learns about the complicated Victorian language of flowers, where each bloom represented a particular idea or emotion, allowing lovers to communicate secretly through their choice of bouquet. Throughout the episode, Lucy dips into popular novels of the time, such as Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë and Ann Veronica by H.G. Wells, discovering that the passions explored in fiction were translating into real-life desires and actions.

The host of several popular PBS SPECIALS including 12 DAYS OF TUDOR CHRISTMAS, VICTORIA & ALBERT: THE WEDDING, TALES FROM THE ROYAL BEDCHAMBER, and more, Lucy Worsley is a royal historian, TV host, Chief Curator at Historic Royal Palaces (the charity which looks after the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, Kensington Palace and other historic places), and author of numerous books including Queen Victoria, Jane Austen at Home, Eliza Rose, A Very British Murder and more.

A VERY BRITISH ROMANCE WITH LUCY WORSLEY will stream (February 9) and be available on all station-branded PBS platforms, including PBS.org and the PBS Video App, available on iOS, Android, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Chromecast. PBS station members will be available to view all episodes via Passport (contact your local PBS station for details).

A VERY BRITISH ROMANCE WITH LUCY WORSLEY is produced by the BBC. Executive producers are Michael Poole and John Das. The series producer is Sebastian Barfield, who also directed Episode 1. Episode 2 is produced and directed by Rachel Jardine.



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