No Victorian 'porn' in Cambridge library

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London, Feb 14 : The secret behind the Victorian treasure trove in the Cambridge library tower has finally been spilled out, and it is definitely not what the university's undergraduates fantasized about.

For decades students of Cambridge believed that the secret stash of books was full of Victorian pornography, but the reality is that the well-guarded manuscripts are on marriage and the etiquette of romance.

The books are distinctly restrained guides on the finer points of Victorian romantic etiquette.

"The traditional student rumor is that the contents of the tower are pornographic," the Telegraph quoted Vanessa Lacey, the manager of the Cambridge University Library Tower Project, as saying.

"In fact we now know it to be a treasure trove for people who want to know more about Victorian society, and among the books are these late 19th and early 20th century lifestyle guides designed to teach young couples the art of courting. At the time they were acquired, they were not considered the sort of thing that serious students should be reading, so they were put away.

"Many of the 200,000 books in the tower have barely been read and some were never opened, but now they give us a fascinating insight into the life and society of the time," she added.

The university has made the disclosure because it is in the process of putting all the titles online.

"There's plenty of pornography in the library which is more recent.

"People can come and have a look at it - for their research. But there's nothing terribly racy from the 19th century. What we found is the Mills and Boon of the era," Lacey said.

ANI

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