Words, Weights, Whatever

Friday, October 31, 2003

History is not boring....

Thanx, Greg!

> The next time you're washing your hands and
> complain because the water
> temperature isn't just how you like it, think
> about how things used to be.
> Here are some facts about the 1500s:
> Most people got married in June because they
> took their yearly bath in May
> and still smelled pretty good by June.
> However, they were starting to smell
> so brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide
> the body odor. Hence the
> custom today of carrying a bouquet when
> getting married.
> Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot
> water. The man of the house
> had the privilege of the nice clean water,
> then all the other sons and men,
> then the women, and finally the children --
> last of all the babies. By
> then the water was so dirty you could actually
> lose someone in it. Hence the saying,
> "Don't throw the baby out with the bath water."
> Houses had thatched roofs (thick straw piled
> high), with no wood underneath. It was the only
> place for animals to get warm, so all the dogs,
> cats and other small animals (mice, bugs)
> lived in the roof. When it rained
> it became slippery and sometimes the animals
> would slip and fall off the roof. Hence the
> saying, "It's raining cats and dogs."
> There was nothing to stop things from falling
> into the house, which posed a
> real problem in the bedroom where bugs and
> other droppings could really
> mess up your nice clean bed. Hence, a bed with
> big posts and a sheet hung
> over the top afforded some protection. That's
> how canopy beds came into existence.
> The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had
> something other than dirt. Hence
> the saying "dirt poor." The wealthy had slate
> floors that would get
> slippery in the winter when wet, so they
> spread thresh (straw)on the floor
> to help keep their footing. As the winter wore
> on, they kept adding more
> thresh until when you opened the door it would
> all start slipping outside.
> A piece of wood was placed in the entranceway.
> Hence the saying a "threshold."
> In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen
> with a big kettle that always
> hung over the fire. Every day they lit the
> fire and added things to the
> pot. They ate mostly vegetables and did not
> get much meat. They would eat
> the stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the
> pot to get cold overnight and
> then start over the next day. Sometimes the
> stew had food in it that had
> been there for quite a while. Hence the rhyme,
> "Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold,
> peas porridge in the pot nine days old."
> Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made
> them feel quite special.
> When visitors came over, they would hang up their
> bacon to show off. It was a
> sign of wealth that a man could "bring home
> the bacon." They would cut off
> a little to share with guests and would all
> sit around and "chew the fat."
> Those with money had plates made of pewter.
> Food with high acid content
> caused some of the lead to leach onto the
> food, causing lead poisoning and
> death. This happened most often with tomatoes,
> so for the next 400 years
> or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.
> Bread was divided according to status. Workers
> got the burnt bottom of the
> loaf, the family got the middle, and guests
> got the top, or "upper crust."
> Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky.
> The combination would
> sometimes knock them out for a couple of days.
> Someone walking along the road would
> take them for dead and prepare them for
> burial. They were laid out on the
> kitchen table for a couple of days and the
> family would gather around and
> eat and drink and wait and see if they would
> wake up. Hence the custom of
> holding a "wake."
> England is old and small and the local folks
> started running out of places
> to bury people. So they would dig up coffins
> and would take the bones to a
> "bone-house" and reuse the grave. When
> reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25
> coffins were found to have scratch marks on
> the inside and they realized
> they had been burying people alive. So they
> thought they would tie a
> String on the wrist of the corpse, lead it through
> the coffin and up through the
> ground and tie it to a bell. Someone would
> have to sit out in the graveyard
> all night (the "graveyard shift") to listen
> for the bell; thus, someone
> could be "saved by the bell" or was considered
> a "dead ringer."
> And that's the truth...... Now, whoever said
> that History was boring ! !
> Educate someone...Share these facts with a friend...


Post a Comment

<< Home

Who links to me?