Risky Regencies

Regency Heroes Redux

Susanna’s blog post on Friday got me thinking about heroes. I, too, look for images of my heroes and I think the idea of looking at videos of actors is brilliant.

In 2006 I wrote a blog about Regency Heroes, where I pretty much gushed about my favorite type of Regency hero, the soldier, but there are other types which recur in Regency Historicals (including some I’ve written!)

Chivalrous Captain, Rebel Mistress by Diane GastonSoldiers.These are my favorite Regency heroes, who, of course, fought in the Napoleonic War, especially at Waterloo. They have strength and bravery. They also have damage from the war, some way the war affected them emotionally, like we talk about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in soldiers today. Why should our soldiers be much different than Napoleonic War soldiers?

Dukes. Dukes in Regency romance, to me, are the “Harlequin Presents” heroes of their time. Harlequin Presents heroes are powerful, wealthy, commanding and seductive. They are used to having their own way–the quintessential Alpha hero. I haven’t written about a duke…yet.

Rakes. We must not forget rakes, those bad boys who have disreputable reputations, but who also have a keen sense of integrity that is all their own. These heroes are fun to write about, which I certainly did in my RITA winner, A Reputable Rake.

Corinthians. A Corinthian is a sporting man. In Regency romance he is the one who is a member of the Four-in-Hand club, meaning he drives his own carriages. He also might ride to hounds, spar with Gentleman Jack in the man’s boxing academy, or fence at Angelo’s fencing club in the same building.

Impoverished Lords. I didn’t know any other way to describe this hero. He has a title or is heir to one or is the younger son, and he lacks money to support his estate or to simply support himself or, in the case of The Mysterious Miss M, support the woman he loves. For the sake of people this hero cares about, he must contemplate stooping to desperate measures.

Of course, we often mix up our heroes, having impoverished lords who were soldiers, or dukes who are Corinthians. That’s part of the fun of it.

Can you think of any other Regency hero types? Which is your favorite?

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ki pha
ki pha
8 years ago

Hmmm Would the Pirates and the blue collar hero be apart of the Corinthians? Oh there are the thieves and highway men~

But I really do love the beta heroes or the bookish types. LOL

ki pha
ki pha
8 years ago
Reply to  ki pha

Oh, and there are types illegitimate sons. They are just……sighs~

Judy Goodnight
Judy Goodnight
8 years ago

Then there’s the unexpected heir – the second son who never expected to inherit the title/estate or the upstart, backwoods cousin from America who now holds the title.

peggy Quidor
peggy Quidor
8 years ago

I would like to add the wife’s that stay home and take care of the kids .The home and land.And what ever else she needs to do.Waiting and her husband gets home safe. To me she’s also a hero

Elena Greene
Admin
8 years ago

In traditional Regencies, there was a type I might call the Beau–someone who is stylish, clever, witty but often has unexpected, underlying strengths.

The best example I can think of is the rather aptly named Mr. Beaumaris in ARABELLA, by Georgette Heyer.

Note he was just a mister, although from an old and wealthy family. Today he would be a duke, a type I feel has been overused. (Though I may eat my words and write a duke someday. Never say never…)

Elena Greene
Admin
8 years ago
Reply to  Diane Gaston

I’m not as well-read as I’d like to be, either. I haven’t seen the Beau hero. Based on titles, dukes and rogues are the thing now. Come to think of it, the Rogue is another variation, not necessarily a rake but someone who makes his own rules. I should have mentioned him before, because I just wrote one, although he is also a Soldier.

katie kofemug
8 years ago

Carla Kelly wrote the most *wonderful* Beta Hero w/ hidden strength despite the wounds. Major Samuel Reed & Captain Jesse Randall still makes me swoon. I know Scipio Africanus Butterworth wasn’t the most popular but though I’ve read oodles of great guys he’s still #1 in my heart. Like a widow, I measure all the heroes against him, I’m still hoping to find one as good. I think Restell Gardner (Jo Goodman) is the closest I’ve found. Hurray for the Beta Heroes that are more than they seem!!

Kristine
8 years ago

My favourite hero is the kind who commands the British army, defeats Napoleon, makes pithy comments, buys Apsley House, is both loyal to his war horse and a sharp dresser . . . . . oh, “fictional” . . . . . . . never mind.

Louisa Cornell
8 years ago

How about all of the above? I love a Regency hero in all of his incarnations so long as he is well-written and a great match for the heroine. I’m terribly fond of the “beastly” hero – the wounded man, perhaps scarred or physically impaired who is all man and all anger at the world.

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