It originated in France during Napoleon I's period as Emperor, which began in 1804. Subsequently, the style became popular in other parts of Europe and America, and remained in vogue until about 1830. The Empire style is sometimes referred to as the second phase of Neoclassicism, as it drew on motifs derived from the art and architecture of Imperial Rome.
The bacchanalia were wild, alcohol-fuelled festivals in honour of the Greco-Roman god Bacchus (also known as Dionysus) who was the god of wine and mystic ecstasy. The festivals originated in Greece, but spread later to Rome. In Rome, they were initially women-only events, but men came to be included at a later date.
Eventually, the term bacchanalia came to be used as a description of any scene characterised by mad drunken revelry and debauchery.
An encoignure is a corner cupboard, or any piece of furniture designed to fit into a corner. It is also the French word for a corner.
Directoire is a style of furniture, decorative arts and fashion which arose between 1795 and 1799. These were the final years of the French Revolution, when France was governed by a group of five men known as the Directory.
In French, bombé means rounded, curved or bulging. Bombé furniture has sections with curves or bulges, usually at the front and sides. In British English a bureau is a writing desk or table, with drawers; in American English a bureau is a chest of drawers.
Click here to see a Directoire period writing desk (bureau plat) which is not bombé.
Pete suggests three venues which Nick might like to visit: the Volunteer, the Shaftesbury, and the Lift.
None of these are named in current lists of gay and gay-friendly pubs and clubs in London.
Time Out list of gay and gay-friendly pubs.
The picture shows the former Coleherne pub in Earls Court, London, which was a famous gay bar between the mid-1950s and 2008. It has now been re-named The Pembroke.
The series ran from 1981 to 1991, and starred John Nettles in the title role as Detective Sergeant Jim Bergerac.
The play is loosely based on a real event, the murder of Vittoria Accoramboni, which took place in Padua in 1585. In the drama, Flamineo (referred to a few lines later) is the brother of the character Vittoria Corombona.
The Gate Cinema (now officially known as The Gate Picturehouse) is situated at 87 Notting Hill Gate in West London. It has an elegant interior with restored Edwardian features, and specialises in independent films for a niche market.
The cinema has a long history, and was previously known as The Electric Palace and The Embassy. It became The Gate in 1974, and underwent refurbishments in 1985 and 2004.
One unusual aspect of the cinema is that the seats now have little tables between them, and cinema-goers are permitted to take alcoholic drinks into the auditorium.
Hampstead Heath is an area of grass and woodland in north London which extends from Hampstead to Highgate.
There are also about 30 ponds on the Heath. These appear natural, but most were artificially created by dams, some of which are up to 300 years old.
Hampstead Heath, particularly the section known as West Heath, is a popular cruising area for gay men.
Click here for a recipe.
For many people, however, Lemon Barley Water brings to mind Robinson's Lemon Barley Water, a bottled, sweetened concentrate which is drunk diluted with water. Since the 1930's, this has been the 'Official Still Soft Drink' of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships.
Fred Perry (1909-1995) was a highly successful English tennis and table-tennis player. One of his notable achievements was winning three consecutive Wimbledon Championships, in 1934, 1935 and 1936.
From the late 1940s onwards, he gave his name to various items of sports clothing which carried a distinctive laurel wreath logo. The Fred Perry brand and the logo are still in existence today, under the ownership of a Japanese company.
A phobia is an irrational or exaggerated fear of a particular object or situation. In clinical psychology, specific phobias involve extreme anxiety about one particular object, while social phobias involve a more generalised anxiety about a range of social situations.
Triskaidekaphobia is an excessive fear of the number 13. As this fear is often enshrined in the superstitious belief system of many cultures, it is probably not justifiable to view it as an anxiety disorder.
Because the word phobia is Greek, phobias are named using Greek prefixes. On occasions this gives rise to some extraordinary-sounding creations: for example, a fear of the day/date combination Friday, the 13th is known as paraskevidekatriaphobia or friggatriskaidekaphobia.
Aichmophobia - a fear of sharp objects, such as knives or needles;
Dromophobia - a fear of crossing roads;
Kenophobia - a fear of voids or open spaces;
Nyctophobia - a fear of the dark.
Click here for a comprehensive list of phobia names.
Calabria is a region to the south of Naples, situated in the 'toe' of the Italian Peninsula. The area is characterised by its mountainous scenery and abundant agriculture.
Rackhams was the name of a department store which had several premises in Birmingham. The company began trading in 1881, and was sold in 1955 to Harrods, which was itself taken over by the House of Fraser in 1959. However, the name Rackhams was retained for the Birmingham store until fairly recently.
In the 1970s, other stores taken over by the House of Fraser, such as those in Altrincham (Cheshire), Bradford and Sheffield (West, and South Yorkshire) and Leamington Spa (Warwickshire), were also given the name Rackhams.
The picture below, taken in 1964, shows the Rackhams store on Corporation Street, Birmingham.