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April 5, 2020

Smile for the Camera: Hilarious Photos Show Victorian Women Having a Giggle by Posing for Funny Faces

There’s often an assumption that people from the Victorian era took everything super seriously. It’s probably because they all look so severe in their portraits, but they enjoyed a good laugh just like the rest of us.

It seems their sense of humor wasn’t even that different from our own, despite being alive several hundred years before us. As these women demonstrated, sometimes all it takes is a silly face to get everyone cracking up. It’s amazing how little some things have changed over time.

It is rare to see images of Victorian people pulling faces in photographs as the exposure time for a photograph in the late 19th century was several seconds. That several-second exposure meant that the subject had to stand very still and holding a smile for a picture was often difficult – and could lead to a blurred photograph.

As a result, Victorian subjects would often pose with blank and unsmiling faces for photographs making photographic evidence of smiling or laughing Victorians extremely rare.


  1. Viewing photos such as these always makes me sad. These vibrant, happy people are now long gone - passed into eternity. It forces one to take stock of their own life. How will you and I be remembered?


    2. Most probably died in the Spanish flu.




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