The Pearl made its debut in London in July 1879, a self-proclaimed journal for every taste. It flourished on the subterranean market until December 1880, when it vanished as mysteriously as it had appeared. Included in the eighteen issues were six serialized novels that are standards of sensual literature of the time, as well as the meatiest limericks then current, parodies of Robert Burns’s Merry Muses, ballads of epic sexual adventures, countless ditties, witticisms, jokes, letters from “readers,” and a potpourri of the scatological and scandalous gossip of the day
|Publisher:||Random House Publishing Group|
|Edition description:||First Ballantine Books Trade Edition|
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By James Jennings
Ballantine BooksCopyright © 1996 James Jennings
All right reserved.
A Journal of Facetiae and Dolupfuous Heading.
No. 1 PUBLISHED MONTHLY. July 1879
AN APOLOGY FOR OUR TITLE.
Having decided to bring out a Journal, the Editor racks his brains for a suitable name with which to christen his periodical. Friends are generally useless in an emergency of this kind; they suggest all kinds of impossible names; the following were some of the titles proposed in this instance: "Facts and Fancies," "The Cremorne," "The All Round," "The Monthly Courses," "The Devil's Own," and "Dugdale's Ghost"; the two first had certainly great attractions to our mind, but at last our own ideas have hit upon the modest little "Pearl," as more suitable, especially in the hope that when it comes under the snouts of the moral and hypocritical swine of the world, they may not trample it underfoot, and feel disposed to rend the publisher, bat that a few will become subscribers on the quiet. To such better disposed piggywiggys, I would say, for encouragement, that they have only to keep up appearances by regularly attending church, giving to charities, and always appearing deeply interested in moral philanthropy, to ensure a respectable and highly moral character, and that if they only are clever enough never to be found out, they may, sub rosa, study and enjoy the philosophy of life till the end of their days, and earn a glorious and saintly epitaph on their tombstone, when at last the Devil pegs them out.
Editor of the "Pearl."
* * *
SUB-UMBRA, OR SPORT AMONG THE
* * *
The merry month of May has always been famous for its propitious influence over the voluptuous senses of the fairer sex.
I will tell you two or three little incidents which occurred to me in May, 1878, when I went to visit my cousins in Sussex, or as I familiarly call them, the She-Noodles, for the sport they afforded me at various times.
My uncle's is a nice country residence, standing in large grounds of its own, and surrounded by small fields of arable and pasture land, interspersed by numerous interesting copses, through which run footpaths and shady walks, where you are not likely to meet anyone in a month. I shall not trouble my readers with the name of the locality, or they may go pleasure hunting for themselves. Well, to go on, these cousins consisted of Annie, Sophie, and Polly, beside their brother Frank, who, at nineteen, was the eldest, the girls being, respectively, eighteen, sixteen, and fifteen. After dinner, the first day of my arrival, paterfamilias and mamma both indulged in a snooze in their armchair, whilst us boys and girls (I was the same age as Frank) took a stroll in the grounds. I attached myself more particularly to cousin Annie, a finely developed blonde, with deep blue eyes, pouting red lips, and a full heaving bosom, which to me looked like a perfect volcano of smothered desires. Frank was a very indolent fellow, who loved to smoke his cigar, and expected his sisters, who adored him, to sit by his side, reading some of the novels of the day, or tell him their love secrets, &c. This was by far too tame an amusement for me, and as I had not been there for nearly three years, I requested Annie to show me the improvements in the grounds before we went in to tea, saying to Frank, banteringly, "I suppose, old fellow, you're too lazy, and would prefer your sister taking me round?"
"I'm too comfortable; lazy is an ugly word, Walter, but the fact is, Soph is just reading a most interesting book, and I can't leave it," he replied; "besides, sissie is quite as well, or better qualified than I am to show off the grounds. I never notice anything."
"Come on, Annie," said I taking her hand; "Frank is in love."
"No, I'm sure he never thinks of a girl, except his sisters," was the reply.
We were now out of earshot, in a shady walk, so I went on a little more freely. "But, surely you, coz, are in love, if he is not. I can tell it by your liquid eye and heaving bosom."
A scarlet flush shot over her features at my allusion to her finely moulded bosom, but it was evidently pleasing, and far from offensive, to judge by her playfully spoken, "Oh! Walter, for shame, sir!"
We were a good distance away by this time, and a convenient seat stood near, so throwing my arms around the blushing girl, I kissed her ruby lips, and drawing her with me, said, "Now, Annie, dear, I'm your cousin and old playfellow, I couldn't help kissing those beautiful lips, which I might always make free with when we were little boy and girl together; now you shall confess all before I let you go."
"But I've nothing to confess, sir."
"Do you never think of love, Annie? Look me in the face if you can say it's a stranger to your bosom," putting my hand familiarly round her neck till my right hand rested on one of the panting globes of her bosom.
She turned her face to mine, suffused as it was by a deeper blush than ever, as her dark blue eyes met mine, in a fearless search of my meaning, but instead of speaking in response to this mute appeal, I kissed her rapturously, sucking in the fragrance of her sweet breath till she fairly trembled with emotion.
It was just beginning to get dusk, my hands were caressing the white, firm flesh of her beautiful neck, slowly working their way towards the heaving bubbies a little lower down; at last I whispered, "What a fine, what a lovely bust you have developed since I saw you last, dear Annie, you won't mind your cousin, will you, when everything used to be so free to each other; besides, what harm can there be in it?"
She seemed on fire, a thrill of emotion seemed to shoot through both of us, and for several moments she lay almost motionless in my arms, with one hand resting on my thigh. Priapus was awake and ready for business, but she suddenly aroused herself, saying, "We must never stop here, let us walk round or they will suspect something."
"When shall we be alone again, darling? We must arrange that before we go in," I said quickly.
It was impossible to keep her on the seat, but as we walked on she said, musingly, "To-morrow morning we might go for a stroll before lunch, Frank lies in bed, and my sisters are keeping house this week; I shall have to mind the tarts and pies next week."
I gave her another hug and a kiss, as I said, "How delightful that will be; what a dear, thoughtful girl you are, Annie."
"Mind, sir, how you behave to-morrow, not so much kissing, or I shan't take you for a second walk; here we are at the house."
Next morning was gloriously warm and fine; as soon as breakfast was over we started for our stroll, being particularly minded by papa to be back in good time for luncheon.
I gradually drew out my beautiful cousin, till our conversation got exceedingly warm, the hot blood rushing in waves of crimson over her shamefaced visage.
"What a rude boy you have grown Walter, since you were here last; I can't help blushing at the way you run on, sir!" she exclaimed at last.
"Annie, my darling," I replied, "what can be more pleasing than to talk of fun with pretty girls, the beauties of their legs and bosoms, and all about them? How I should love to see your lovely calf at this moment, especially after the glimpses I have already had of a divine ankle," saying which I threw myself under a shady tree, close by a gate in a meadow, and drew the half-resisting girl down on the grass at my side, and kissed her passionately, as I murmured, "Oh! Annie, what is there worth living for like the sweets of love?"
Her lips met mine in a fiery embrace, but suddenly disengaging herself, her eyes cast down, and looking awfully abashed, she stammered out, "What is it? what do you mean, Walter?"
"Ah, coz dear, can you be so innocent? Feel here the dart of love all impatient to enter the mossy grotto between your thighs," I whispered, placing her hand upon my prick, which I had suddenly let out of the restraining trousers. "How you sigh; grasp it in your hand, dear, is it possible that you do not understand what it is for?"
Her face was crimson to the roots of her hair, as her hand grasped my tool, and her eyes seemed to start with terror at the sudden apparition of Mr. John Thomas; so that taking advantage of her speechless confusion my own hand, slipping under her clothes, soon had possession of her mount, and in spite of the nervous contraction of her thighs, the forefinger searched out the virgin clitoris.
"Ah! oh! oh!! Walter don't; what are you about?"
"It's all love, dear, open your thighs a wee bit and see what pleasure my finger will make you experience," I again whispered, smothering her with renewed and luscious kisses, thrusting the velvet tip of my tongue between her lips.
"Oh! oh! you will hurt!" she seemed to sigh rather than speak, as her legs relaxed a little of their spasmodic contraction.
My lips continued glued to hers, our otherwise disengaged arms clasped each other closely round the waist, her hand holding my affair in a kind of convulsive grasp, whilst my fingers were busy with clitoris and cunny; the only audible sound resembling a mixture of kisses and sighs, till all in a moment I felt her crack deluged with a warm, creamy spend whilst my own juice spurted over her hand and dress in loving sympathy.
In a short while we recovered our composure a little, and I then explained to her that the melting ecstasy she had just felt was only a slight foretaste of the joy I could give her, by inserting my member in her cunny. My persuasive eloquence and the warmth of her desires soon overcame all maiden fears and scruples; then for fear of damaging her dress, or getting the green stain of the grass on the knees of my light trousers, I persuaded her to stand up by the gate and allow me to enter behind. She hid her face in her hands on the top rail of the gate, as I slowly raised her dress; what glories were unfolded to view, my prick's stiffness was renewed in an instant at the sight of her delicious buttocks, so beautifully relieved by the white of her pretty drawers; as I opened them and exposed the flesh, I could see the lips of her plump pouting cunny, deliciously feathered, with soft light down, her lovely legs, drawers, stockings, pretty boots, making a tout ensemble, which as I write and describe them cause Mr. Priapus to swell in my breeches; it was a most delicious sight. I knelt and kissed her bottom, slit, and everything my tongue could reach, it was all mine, I stood up and prepared to take possession of the seat of love--when, alas! a sudden shriek from Annie, her clothes dropped, all my arrangements were upset in a moment; a bull had unexpectedly appeared on the opposite side of the gate, and frightened my love by the sudden application of his cold, damp nose to her forehead. It is too much to contemplate that scene even now.
(To be continued.)
* * *
MISS COOTE'S CONFESSION,
Or the Voluptuous Experiences of an Old Maid;
In a series of Letters to a Lady Friend.
* * *
My Dear Girl,
I know I have long promised you an account of the reason of my penchant for the rod, which, in my estimation, is one of the most voluptuous and delicious institutions of private life, especially to a supposed highly respectable old maid like your esteemed friend. Treaties must be carried out, and promises kept, or how can I ever hope for the pleasure of making you taste my little green tickler again. Writing, and especially a sort of confession of my voluptuous weakness, is a most unpleasant task, as I feel as shamefaced in putting these things on paper as when my grandfather's housekeeper first bared my poor blushing little bottom to his ruthless attack. My only consolation at commencing is the hope that I shall warm to the subject as it progresses, in my endeavour to depict, for your gratification, some of the luscious episodes of my early days.
My grandfather, as you well know, was the celebrated Indian General, Sir Eyre Coote, almost as well known for his eight-penny fiasco with the Bluecoat boys as for his services to the Hon. E. I. Company. He was a confirmed martinet. and nothing delighted him so much as a good opportunity for the use of the cat, but I cannot tell you anything about that, as that was before my time. My first recollection of him is after the aforesaid City scandal, when he had to retire from public life in comparative disgrace. My parents both died when I was just upon twelve years of age, and the old General, who had no other relatives to care for, took entire charge of me, and, at his death, I was left his sole heiress, and mistress of nearly £3,000 per annum.
He resided in a quiet country house some twenty miles from London, where I spent the first few months of my orphaned life, with only his housekeeper, Mrs. Mansell, and the two servants, Jane and Jemima. The old General being away in Holland searching, so I afterwards heard, for original editions respecting the practices of Cornelius Hadrien, a curious work on the flagellation of religious penitents by a father confessor.
It was the middle of summer when he returned, and I soon found the liberty I had been enjoying considerably restricted. Orders not to pluck the flowers, or the fruit in the garden; and a regular lesson set me every day by the old autocrat himself. At first they were tolerably simple, but gradually increased in difficulty, and now, in after years, I can plainly understand his wolf and lamb tactics, by which I must eventually fall under his assumed just displeasure.
What gave me considerable pleasure at this time was his decided objection to mourning, or anything at all sombre in my dress. He said my parents had been shown every possible respect by wearing black for months, and I must now be dressed as became a young lady of my good expectations.
Although we scarcely ever received company, and then only some old fogy of his military acquaintance, I was provided with a profusion of new and elegant dresses, as well as beautiful shoes, slippers, drawers, and underlinen, all trimmed with finest lace &c., not even forgetting some very beautiful garters, a pair of which with gold buckles, he would insist upon putting on for me, taking no notice of my blushing confusion, as he pretended to arrange my drawers and skirts afterwards, but merely to remark: What a fine figure I should make, if they ever had to strip me for punishment.
Soon my lessons began to be harder than I could fairly manage. One day he expostulated, "Oh! Rosa; Rosa!! why don't you try to be a better girl. I don't want to punish you."
"But grandfather," I replied, "how can I learn so much of that horrid French every day. I'm sure no one else could do it."
"Hold your tongue, Miss Pert, I must be a better judge than a little girl like you."
"But, grandfather dear, you know I do love you, and I do try my best."
"Well, prove your love and diligence in future, or your posterior must feel a nice little birch, I shall get ready for you," said he sternly.
Another week passed, during which I could not help observing an unusual fire and sparkle in his eyes, whenever I appeared in evening dress at the dinner table (we always dined in quiet state), and he also suggested that I ought to wear a choice little bouquet of fresh flowers in my bosom, to set off my complexion.
But the climax was approaching, I was not to escape long; he again found fault, and gave me what he gravely called one last chance: my eyes were filled with tears, and I trembled to look at his stern old face, and knew any remonstrance on my part would be useless.
The prospect of punishment made me so nervous, it was with the greatest difficulty I could attend to my lessons, and the second day after, I broke down entirely.
"Oh! Ho! it's come to this has it, Rosie?" said the old gentleman, "nothing will do, you must be punished."
Ringing the bell for Mrs. Mansell, he told her to have the punishment room and the servants all ready, when he should want them, as he was sorry to say "Miss Rosa was so idle, and getting worse and worse with her lessons every day, she must now be taken severely in hand or she would be spoiled for life."
"Now, you bad girl," said he, as the housekeeper retired, "go to your room and reflect upon what your idleness has brought to you."
Full of indignation, confusion, and shame, I rushed to my chamber, and bolted the door, determined they should break the door down first before I would submit to such a public exposure, before the two servants; throwing myself on the bed, I gave vent to my tears for at least a couple of hours, expecting every moment the dreadful summons to attend the old man's punishment drill, as he called it, but, no one disturbing me, I at last came to the conclusion it was only a plan of his to frighten me, and so I fell into a soothing sleep. A voice at the door awakened me, and I recognized the voice of Jane, as she said, "Miss Rosa, Miss Rosa, you'll be late for dinner."
"No dinner for me, Jane, if I'm going to be punished; go away, leave me alone," whispered I through the keyhole.
"Oh! Miss Rosie, the General's been in the garden all the afternoon, quite good-tempered, perhaps he's forgotten it all; don't make him angry by not being ready for dinner, let me in quick."
So I cautiously drew the bolt, and let her assist me to dress.
"Cheer up, Miss Rosie, don't look dull, go down as if nothing had happened, and most likely all will be forgotten; his memory is so short, especially if you put in your bosom this sweet little nosegay to please him, as you have never done it since he said it would set off your complexion."
Thus encouraged, I met my grandfather with a good appetite, and, as if the "bitterness was past," like Agag before Samuel, little suspecting I should be almost hewed in pieces afterwards.
The dinner passed most pleasantly, for such a formal affair as my grandfather made it, he took several glasses of wine, and in the middle of the dessert seemed to contemplate me with unusual interest; at last suddenly seeming to notice the little bouquet of damask and white roses, he said, "That's right, Rosa, I see you have carried out my suggestion of a nosegay at last; it quite improves your appearance, but nothing to what my birch will effect on your naughty bottom, which will soon look like one of those fine peaches, and now's the time to do it," said he, ringing the bell.
Almost distracted, and ready to faint, I rushed for the door, but only in time to fall into the arms of strong Jemima.
"Now for punishment drill; march on, Jemima, with the culprit, you've got her safe; Mrs. Mansell and Jane, come on," said he to them, as they appeared in the background.
Resistance was useless. I was soon carried into a spare room I had never entered; it contained very little furniture, except the carpet, and one comfortable easy chair; but on the walls hung several bunches of twigs, and in one corner stood a thing like a stepladder, but covered with red baize, and fitted with six rings, two halfway up, two at bottom, and two at the top.
"Tie her to the horse, and get ready for business," said the General, as he seated himself in the chair, to look on at his ease.
"Come, Rosa, dear, don't be troublesome, and make your grandfather more angry," said Mrs. Mansell, unfastening my waistband. "Slip off your dress, whilst the girls put the horse in the middle of the room."
"Oh! No! No! I won't be whipped," I screamed. "Oh! Sir! Oh! Grandfather, do have mercy," said I, throwing myself on my knees before the old man.
"Come, come, it's no use showing the white feather, Rosa, it's for your own good. No more nonsense. Mrs. Mansell, do your duty, and let us get the painful business over; she isn't one of my stock if she doesn't show her pluck when it comes to the pinch."
The three women all tried to lift me, but I kicked, scratched, and bit all round, and, for a moment or two, almost beat them off in my fury, but my strength was soon exhausted, and Jemima, smarting from a severe bite, carried me in vengeful triumph to the dreaded machine. Quick as thought, my hands and feet were secured to the upper and lower rings; the horse widening towards the ground caused my legs to be well apart when drawn up closely to the rings at my ankles.
I could hear Sir Eyre chuckle with delight, as he exclaimed, "By God! she's a vixen, and it must be taken out of her, she's a Coote all over. Bravo, Rosie! Now get her ready quickly."
I submitted in sullen despair, whilst my torn dress and underskirts were turned up and pinned round my shoulders, but when they began to unloose my drawers, my rage burst out afresh, and turning my head, I saw the old man, his stern face beaming with pleased animation, whisking in his right hand a small bunch of fresh birchen twigs. My blood was in a boil, and my bottom tingled with anticipated strokes, especially when Jemima, pulling the drawers nearly down to my knees, gave me a smart little slap on the sly, to let me know what I might soon expect, and I fairly shouted, "You must be a cruel old beast to let them treat me so."
"Old beast, indeed!" said he, jumping up in a passion. "We'll see about that, Miss; perhaps you'll be glad to apologize before long."
I saw him stepping forward. "Oh! Mercy! Mercy! Sir! I didn't mean it; they've hurt me so; I couldn't help what I said."
"This is a really serious case," said he, apparently addressing the others. "She's idle, violently vicious, and even insulting to me, her only natural guardian, instead of treating me with proper respect. There can be no alternative, the only remedy, however painful the scene may be to us who have to inflict the punishment, is to carry it out, as a matter of duty, or the girl will be ruined. She has never been under proper control all her life."
"Oh! Grandfather, punish me any way but this. I know I can't bear it; it's so dreadfully cruel," I sobbed out through my tears.
"My child, such crocodile tears have no effect on me; you must be made to feel the smart. If we let you off now, you would be laughing at it all, and go on worse than before. Stand aside, Jane, we can't waste any more time." So saying, he made a flourish with the rod, so as to make quite an audible "whisk" in the air. I suppose it was only to clear the way, as it did not touch me; in fact up to this time, he had treated me like a cat which knows the poor mousey cannot escape, but may be pounced upon at any time.
I could see the tears in Jane's eyes, but Jemima had a malicious smile on her face, and Mrs. Mansell looked very grave, but no time was allowed for reflections; the next instant I felt a smart but not heavy stroke right across my loins, then another, and another, in rather quick succession, but not too fast for me to think that perhaps after all it would not be so dreadful as I feared; so setting my teeth firmly without uttering a word, I determined to give as little indication as possible of my feelings. All this and a great deal more flashed through my brain before six strokes had been administered, my bottom tingled all over, and the blood seemed to rush like lightning through my veins at every blow, and my face felt as my poor posteriors.
"Now, you idle puss," said the General, "you begin to feel the fruits of your conduct. Will you? Will you call me an old beast again?" giving a harder stroke at each ejaculation.
My courage still sustained my resolution not to cry out, but only seemed to make him more angry.
"Sulky tempered and obstinate, by Jove!" he continued; "we must draw it out of you. Don't think, Miss, I'm to be beaten by a little wench like you; take that, and that, and that," whisking me with still greater energy, concluding with a tremendous whack which drew up the skin to bursting tension, and I felt another like it would make the blood spurt forth, but he suddenly paused in his fury, as if for want of breath, but as I now know too well, only to prolong his own exquisite pleasure.
Thinking all was over, I entreated them to let me go, but to my sorrow soon found my mistake.
"Not yet, not yet, you bad girl, you're not half punished for all your biting, scratching, and impudence," exclaimed Sir Eyre.
Again the hateful birch hissed through the air, and cut into my bruised flesh, both buttocks and thighs, suffering and smarting in agony, but he seemed careful at first not to draw the blood; however, I was not to escape, it was only his deliberate plan of attack, so as not to exhaust the poor victim too soon.
"Bite, and scratch, and fight against my orders again, will you? Miss Rosie, you'll know next time what to expect. You deserve no mercy, the idleness was bad enough, but such murderous conduct is awful; I believe you would have killed anyone in your passion if you could. Bite, scratch, and fight, eh! Bite, will you?" Thus lectured the old man, getting warmer and warmer in his attack, till the blood fairly trickled down my poor thighs.
I was in dreadful agony at every cut, and must have fainted, but his lecturing seemed to sustain me like a cordial; besides, with the pain I experienced a most pleasurable warmth and excitability impossible to be described, but which, doubtless, you, my dear, have felt for yourself when under my discipline.
But all my fortitude could not much longer suppress my sighs and moans, and at last I felt as if I must die under the torture, in spite of the exquisite sensation which mingled with it; notwithstanding my ohs and ahs, and stifled cries, I would not ask for mercy again; my sole thoughts ran upon the desire for vengeance, and how I should like to whip and cut them all in pieces, especially the General and Jemima, and even poor tearful Jane.
Sir Eyre seemed to forget his age, and worked away in frightful excitement.
"Damme, won't you cry for mercy? Won't you apologize, you young hussy," he hissed between his teeth. "She's tougher and more obstinate than any of the family, a real chip of the old block. But to be beaten by the young spitfire, Mrs. Mansell, is more than I can bear. There! there! there!" cried he; and at last the worn-out stump of the rod fell from his hand, as he sank back quite exhausted in his chair.
"Mrs. Mansell," he gasped, "give her half-a-dozen good stripes with a new rod to finish her off, and let her know that although she may exhaust an old man, there are other strong arms that can dispense justice to her impudent rump."
The housekeeper, in obedience to the command, takes up a fine fresh birch, and cuts deliberately, counting, in clear voice, one, two, three, four, five, six (her blows were heavy, but did not seem to sting so cruelly as those given by Sir Eyre). "There," she says, "Miss Rosa, I might have laid it on more heavily, but I pitied you this first time."
Nearly dead, and frightfully cut up, although victorious, I had to be carried to my room. But what a victory? all torn and bleeding, as I was, besides the certainty that the old General would renew his attack the first favourable opportunity.
Poor Jane laughed and cried over my lacerated posteriors as she tenderly washed me with cold arnica and water, and she seemed so used to the business that when we retired to rest (for I got her to sleep with me) I asked her if she had not often attended bruised bottoms before.
"Yes, Miss Rosie," she repled; "but you must keep the secret and not pretend to know anything. I have been whipped myself, but not so bad as you were, although it's cruel. We all rather like it after the first time or two; especially if we are not cut up too much. Next time you should shout out well for mercy, &c., as it pleases the old man, and he won't be so furious. He was so bad and exhausted with whipping you, Mrs. Mansell was going to send for the doctor, but Jemima said a good birching would do him more good, and draw the blood away from his head; so they pickled him finely, till he quite came to himself, and begged hard to be let off."
Thus ended my first lesson; and, in further letters, you shall hear how I got on with Jane, continued the contest with the General, my adventures at Mrs. Flaybum's school, and my own domestic discipline since left to myself.
Believe me, Dear Nellie, Your affectionate friend Rosa Belinda Coote.
(To be continued.)
Excerpted from The Pearl by James Jennings Copyright © 1996 by James Jennings. Excerpted by permission.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
If you are a 'missionary position' type of person, then this book is definitely not for you. For those of us who believe that the imagination should be unfettered by the constrains of behavioral moral ethics - this book offers erotica for several different tastes. Admittedly limited by the language of the day, it at least unhampered by the current temperament of political correctness. I personally find the trend towards 'whitewashed' sex in the arts unappealling. Literature should and must explore the boundaries of the mind and soul, and not have to satisfy the political agendas of the 'Moral Police' of the day. This book includes scenes that would disquiet anyone who applies their moral ethics of behavior to their imagination. However, if your erotic imagination soars free of those constrains, then you may very well derive a substantial amount of pleasure from reading this book. IMHO
I bought my first copy of the Pearl in about 1990. I have gone through several copies and I agree with the other commentor, this is not for the PC type boring sex life person. I have other Victorian Erotica but the Pearl is still the best collection there is from that time period. If you want porn, stick to magazines. But if you want fun, if you want just a bit more than your typical romance novel, buy the Pearl.