If you’ve ever looked at pictures from the Victorian era then you’ve probably noticed that nobody is smiling. Everybody looks so serious that it seems as if people in the 1800s simply didn’t know how to have fun. But as these rare pictures prove, that wasn’t always the case.
There are many theories as to why Victorians always look so dour in pictures. Long exposure times made smiling difficult (and by long we mean several hours. Seriously. Ever tried smiling for several hours? It hurts) and the high cost of portraits gave people very little to smile about. Poor dental hygiene made people reluctant to show their teeth (or whatever teeth they had left), and let’s not forget that many Victorians simply had it pretty rough back then. But as you can see from the pictures below, some still found something to smile about. (h/t: whizzpast)