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Stephen Fry's Victorian Secrets

Length: 7 hrs and 40 mins
Categories: History, Europe
4.5 out of 5 stars (86 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

On the surface, the Victorian age is one of propriety, industry, prudishness and piety. But scratch the surface and you’ll find scandal, sadism, sex, madness, malice and murder.

Presented by Stephen Fry, this series delves deep into a period of time we think we know, to discover an altogether darker reality. The stories we’re told offer a different perspective on an era which underwent massive social change. As education, trade, technology and culture blossomed, why was there an undercurrent of the ‘forbidden’ festering beneath Victorian society?

Across 12 episodes, Stephen presents a series of true accounts of the dangerous low life and debauched high life of Victorian Britain.

This is an Audible Original Podcast. Free for members. You can download all 12 episodes to your Library now.

©2018 Audible, Ltd. (P)2018 Audible, Ltd.

Critic Reviews

 ★★★★☆ (The Times)

"Scandalous bedtime storyteller Stephen Fry's new podcast bursts the image of the Victorians as prudish and pious... Debauchery, told with delicious relish." (The Guardian)

"Fantastic...[from] the ever eloquent Stephen Fry." (BBC Radio 4)

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What listeners say about Stephen Fry's Victorian Secrets

Average Customer Ratings
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Get to know the unknown !

Nicely written and narrated it was an overall nice experience to listen to all the stories.

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A nice insight into the Victorian Era

Most of us have the misconception that the Victorians are a bunch of prudes, whose lives were boring....but the reality is so different.

Listen to this collection and find out the truth for yourself. Personally, I found the first three episodes not as good as the rest. But overall, a nice podcast.

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  • CD
  • 20-06-20

Fascinating

loved every chapter. listened fascinated to the narration of life in Victorian times. highly entertaining and informative.

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Amazing performance

This was so informative and entertaining. Stephen Fry was amazing as always. The narration was on point. Would definitely recommend.

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Entertaining read

some quite interesting secrets from the Victorian era. it's worth a read. Enjoyed the book.

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Fascinating, intriguing, tantalisingly secretive

Mr. Stephen Fry.. You are the storyteller! Lovedit. Your voice is enigmatic and realistic simultaneously.

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Just another podcast

usually I hate podcasts because of background music, so many voices jumping in and out etc., which makes one loose the flow very quickly. Hope audible stick to its idea of providing audio books.

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Good

The background score is not apt. At times annoying and at times overpowering the phenomenal Fry. He deserves better.

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Episodes 1 and 2 are missing

Where can I find episode 1 and 2? audible.in please help me... this is such a disappointment... I got the first 5 minutes of the first episode in the sample... pretty desperate really...

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • ElizabethLovick
  • 14-12-18

Ruined by the intrusive musak

Stephen Fry was brilliant. The historians were brilliant. The subject matter was brilliant.

But.

The music "behind" the speech was so loud that there were times when I could not hear what the interviewees were saying. As a result, listening to this was not relaxing, but hard work. Such a shame.

58 people found this helpful

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  • Maz
  • 12-03-19

Please remove the piano background

The piano is like chinese water torture - I can practically guarantee whoever added it did not sit and listen for long enough to understand its negative impact. Stephen Fry is brilliant as usual and makes the subject interesting but it is difficult to listen for very long.

6 people found this helpful

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  • C Dale
  • 14-11-18

Distracting music.

I found this book impossible to listen to. The incredibly annoying, distracting, all pervasive piano music throughout the readings by Mr Fry completely destroyed the listening experience for me. Such a shame, because I really enjoy his narration.

75 people found this helpful

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  • Trax UK
  • 30-11-18

That darn piano!

I gave it 2 episodes and the ‘background’ piano finally got to me. I’m sure that the stories are interesting enough without it but my head just can’t filter it out.

68 people found this helpful

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  • Ian
  • 20-07-19

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loved it, very interesting & entertaining. heard the narrator before somewhere, he's very good. top marks

7 people found this helpful

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  • Vickster
  • 26-10-18

Fascinating look at our not too distant past

Beautifully performed, as always by Mr Fry, but also an excellent supporting cast; telling an intriguing, fascinating history of Victorian life, from the perspective of "secrets". Thoroughly recommend and wondering how folks in a couple of hundred years time would look at our society today!... So fascinating to realise - as is often the case when you study history - how you can draw the threads of the past into how we have turned out today.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Simon
  • 21-10-18

The Quintessential Englishman!

Well, well, Stephen Fry appearing in Victoria(sic) Secret! Now there's an image to conjure with . . . though I am sure that even Stephen himself would agree that it's maybe not one to conjure with too long! He really is an absolute star on Audible and this is another fine series that he's helped bring to life with his narrating talents.

To suggest that the quality of this offering is based on Fry alone would be to do it a massive disservice though. This is a fascinating part of both British and world history and it's explored with a genuine relish for the subject. I was a little perturbed at first at how much the program seemed to be relying on expert contribution from US Universities but the subjects had global reach and the quality of the insight offered was excellent.

Never falling into the trap of glorifying or just simply titillating this is a very wry adult look at some of the quirkiest and at times darkest of aspects of Victorian life.

79 people found this helpful

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  • Anna Smirnova
  • 06-08-19

Fascinating listen

As everything Stephen Fry does, it's an excellently made podcast. It intrigues the listener and I like the acting pieces which add life to the performance.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Tracy Norwood
  • 30-10-19

His voice is it addictive the stories are amazing

Every chapter in this book left me wide-awake but questioning what happened back in the 1820s book was astounding and actually kept me awake to hear the end of the chapter my best purchase so far

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  • OK
  • 17-07-19

A hint of spice in each chapter

Stephen Fry just made the story sound really fantastic, and the book is very interesting! Totally enjoyed!

2 people found this helpful

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  • bridget Huolohan
  • 28-11-18

Love this!

Eclectic group of scenarios, stories and topics read entertainingly by Stephen Fry and a handful of actors. Very entertaining!!

8 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-05-19

Very interesting

Loved listening to such interesting and never heard of facts about the people and, somewhat, strange events in the Victorian era. As always, it's fantastic to listen to Stephen Fry's amazing voice.

2 people found this helpful

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  • AM
  • 12-04-19

Great stories.

Easy to listen to and fascinating yarns. Fry is a wonderful story teller. I recommend.



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  • Bernadette Aitken
  • 30-11-18

Amazing

What a fascinating series. The series is a very high quality production. The addition of experts in their fields, actors reading diary and journal entries and the music made this an enjoyable series to listen to. When you think you know a lot about the Victorians, you will still find that there is a lot you didn’t know.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Dazzlingdiamonde
  • 21-06-19

Very interesting telling of historical occurance.

Love Stephen Fry's narration plus the other narrators included. Also nice to hear from historians and have facts represented.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Pat Feige
  • 14-03-19

Good insight into this era

excellent.insight in to Victorian England and abroad. Well narrated by Stephan Fry. would like to see more installments

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  • Anonymous User
  • 19-02-19

top notch

factually fabulous and and characteristically charming. binged the whole thing and I loved it completely.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-01-19

Can you believe it - things were different then🙄

These would be really interesting stories- except it is basically one long mockery of the people of this time. Shockingly enough they were not living in our wonderfully enlightened days and OMG , apparently that’s unforgivable and laughable.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 17-09-20

Delightful!

Great production and story telling - Fry brings life to the curious secrets of the Victorians.

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  • Nic
  • 28-05-20

won't down load, always gives error message

I have no idea about this book as it won't down load, always gives an error message that it can't download. No matter what I do I can't delete the file, it keeps coming back like a bad case of herpes.