Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Lingerie in Literature

Underwear is a visually powerful tool, but how does it fare in the written word?

Ian McEwan favours relentlessly detailed descriptions - right down to the tiny daisy embroidered on Cecilia's bra in Atonement. Jane Austen, on the other hand, moans in letters to her sister about the "unnatural" fashion for pushed-up bosoms and we've all become familiar with EL James' most over-used undergarment in the Fifty Shades trilogy. Yes we're looking at you, "panties".

Here we bring you 20 of our favourite instances of lingerie in literature (and click your way over here if you fancy the fully-clothed version).

Tell us know your best undies in books on Twitter, or in the comments, below.

Images: Rex Features

Related

hero-1.jpg

London Fashion Week SS14: Street Style Day 2

caradhero.jpg

LFW: Hungover-Hot at Topshop Unique

Eyes-Wide-Shut.jpg

40 must-see erotic films and books

rexfeatures-1527218a.jpg

Clothes on film: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

hero.jpg

Seven Books Every Woman Should Read

newsletter-img.jpg

The 2013 Man Booker Prize Shortlist

Comments

More

One book lover has turned her staircase into an homage to literature

Stairway to book heaven? by Amy Lewis

21 Jul 2016

Kirsten Dunst to direct film adaptation of The Bell Jar

Sylvia Plath’s iconic novel is being brought to the big screen as a “dark comedy” by Kayleigh Dray

21 Jul 2016

Winnie the Pooh is Britain's favourite children's book character

“The things that make me different are the things that make me” by Victoria Gray

20 Jul 2016

My feminist library: 10 books every woman should read

The titles that played a part in one writer's feminist journey by Cathy Rentzenbrink

06 Jul 2016

The top 10 inspirational quotes from literature read by celebrities

From Tina Fey to Sissy Spacek by Harriet Hall

06 Jul 2016

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's refreshingly low-key baby annoucement

“I didn't want to perform pregnancy” by Victoria Gray

06 Jul 2016

The most addictive new reads of July

Switch off from the news and indulge in a good book. by Cathy Rentzenbrink

05 Jul 2016

20 books, films and songs for when you need a good cry

Grab a box of tissues and settle in for a sob-fest. by Katharine Busby

04 Jul 2016

This bookshop prints your novel in the time it takes to drink a coffee

Paris's iconic Librairie des Puf is revolutionising how we buy books by Moya Crockett

15 Jun 2016

Kathy Lette: “Emily Brontë taught me what I really wanted in bed”

“After years of loveless sex, Wuthering Heights opened my eyes to true romance”

14 Jun 2016