5 Films Based in Georgian England

Anyone for a game of Whist?

Although Tudor England will always be my favorite time/place in history, I’ve had a dalliance with the Georgian period. For the aristocracy, Georgian England (1714-1830) was all about “taking the cure” at Bath, enjoying the poetry of Keats, Byron and Burns and reading about major societal changes in other parts of the world: England lost their grasp of America in 1776 and France executed their monarch in 1793.

But for me, one of my very favorite things about the Georgian era is the fashion. Oh my gosh. So pretty. Exaggerated silhouettes, tiny waists, full gowns, lots of ribbon and lace. Elaborate towering wigs. Some of the best places to see examples of Georgian life is in movies based during the period.

The Duchess (2008)

The movie made Georgiana look like much more of a saint than she actually was, but I love this movie anyway. The sets and gowns are to do for.


Belle (2013)

I just watched this movie for the first time and I looooooved it. Although not historically accurate (because really, are movies ever historically accurate), it was a touching look at the life of Dido Elizabeth Belle, the daughter of a white Englishman from an upperclass family and an African slave. The gowns Dido and her cousin wear are delicious. So feminine and pretty.

It’s a great story too!


82_mediumThe Madness of King George (1994)

During the later part of his life, George III had mental health problems, likely made worse by losing America as a British colony.

This movie is worth watching for Helen Mirren’s hair and Rupert Everett’s spoiled brat act alone.

Beau Brummell: This Charming Man (2006)

Is there an actor working today who has been in as many period dramas as James Purefoy? In this BBC TV drama, Purefoy portrays a fashionable gent who had a massive influence on men’s fashion during the era.


Emma (1996)

I saw this movie for the first time a few months ago and… oh my goodness. So delightful. Films based on Jane Austen’s films are always so pretty. SO PRETTY! Also, I’m a sucker for a young Jeremy Northam. *hearts coming out of eyes*


This post originally include The Libertine but a reader pointed out that John Wilmot lived and died before the Georgian period. Thanks Stephen!

jillianne hamilton headshotJillianne Hamilton is an author, history enthusiast, book lover, and graphic designer. Her debut novel, Molly Miranda: Thief for Hire, was shortlisted for the 2016 Prince Edward Island Book Award. Her debut non-fiction book, The Lazy Historian's Guide to the Wives of Henry VIII is now available. She lives in Charlottetown on Canada's beautiful east coast and is working on her debut historical fiction novel.
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  • Stephen Barker

    John Wilmot lived in the reign of Charles II in the Seventeenth Century so is pre-Georgian.

    • Jill

      Ah! Yes, you’re right. I’ll fix that.


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