The Ladies' Diary

The Ladies' Diary

The Ladies' Diary: or, Woman's Almanack appeared annually in London from 1704 to 1841. It featured material relating to calendars etc. including sunrise and sunset times and phases of the moon, as well as important dates (eclipses, holidays, school terms, etc.), and a chronology of remarkable events.

The subtitle indicated its serious purpose: "Containing New Improvements in ARTS and SCIENCES, and many entertaining PARTICULARS: Designed for the USE AND DIVERSION OF THE FAIR SEX." These included riddles (called enigmas), rebuses, charades, scientific queries, and mathematical questions. A typical volume in the series included answers submitted by readers to problems posed the previous year and a set of new problems, nearly all proposed by readers. Both puzzle and answer (revealed the following year) were often in verse.

(Sometimes the subtitles were even more specific. For example, in 1836 the full title was "The Ladies Diary, For the Year of Our Lord 1835, Being the Third After Bissextile. Designed specifically For the Amusement and Entertainment of The Fair Sex With An Appendix of Curious and Valuable Mathematical Papers For the Use of Students. The Hundred and Thirty Second Almanack Published of this Kind. Also The Gentleman's Diary Or, The Mathematical Repository; An Almanack For the Year of Our Lord 1835 and 1836 Being The Third or Bissextile or Leap Year Containing many Useful and entertaining Particulars peculiarly adapted to the Ingenious Gentleman engaged in the delightful Study and Practice of the Mathematicks".)


*Leder, Gilah (1981) The Ladies' Diary. "Australian Mathematics Teacher" 37(2):3-5.
*Perl, Teri (1977) The Ladies' Diary. . .Circa 1700. "Mathematics Teacher" 70(4):354-358.

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