http://www.aoltv.com/2011/10/21/downton-abbey-criticized-for-historically-incorrect-language/?ncid=webmail2Here's the link:
Correct language for the period is always a high priority for me when I'm writing both my series of historical mysteries. I want the reader to feel he or she is in New York in 1903, or having fun with Lady Georgie in 1930s England. If a word sounds too modern, I have broken the spell. The funny thing is that some slang I know was in use in 1900 I simply can't use because readers would find it too modern. Phrases like "far out" for example were in use then.
So how do I make sure that I keep my readers in the period, when obviously I wasn't alive at either time? Well, for Molly I try to remember how my great-aunts spoke. They were born in the late 1800s and several things were different about their language:
They were horribly formal. Only close family was addressed by our first names. Other friends were Mrs. this and Miss that.
They had huge vocabularies as a result of all that reading as young women. They'd never use filler words like "you know".
They didn't use any kind of swear word, or any word that might seem delicate--a body part, the bathroom etc.
A lady really remained quiet in the presence of gentlemen.
So I channel them when I'm in Edwardian times--although I can't keep Molly quiet too often!