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Thread: Just Trivia

  1. #1

    Default Just Trivia

    In The 1500's

    The next time you are 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 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.. This posed a real problem in the bedroom where bugs and other droppings could 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 floor to help keep their footing. As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until, when you opened the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entrance way. Hence the saying a thresh hold.

    (Getting quite an education, aren't you?)

    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 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 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 the upper crust.

    Lead cups were used to drink ale or whiskey. The combination would sometimes knock the imbibers 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 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.

    I add to this.

    "Sleep tight and don't let the bed-bugs bite"

    In those days the bed-frames were laced with ropes to hold a straw-filled mattress.

    Before you went to bed you used a stout stick to "tighten the ropes that would stretch and become loose - ergo "sleep tight".

    Since the straw would be an attraction to bugs well - "don't let the bed-bugs bite" by shaking the lump of straw in the bag.

    Btw, in our "rendezvousing" camps where we reenact the 1700s many have built these simple framed beds with ropes to hold their "mattresses".

    How about the old children's song we were all taught and sang ?

    "Ring around the rosy pocket full of posies"

    "Many have associated the poem with the Great Plague of London in 1665, or with earlier outbreaks of bubonic plague in England. Interpreters of the rhyme before World War II make no mention of this;[15] by 1951, however, it seems to have become well established as an explanation for the form of the rhyme that had become standard in Britain. Peter and Iona Opie remark[16]: ‘The invariable sneezing and falling down in modern English versions have given would-be origin finders the opportunity to say that the rhyme dates back to the Great Plague. A rosy rash, they allege, was a symptom of the plague, posies of herbs were carried as protection, sneezing was a final fatal symptom , and “all fall down” was exactly what happened.’ Another translation:Ring around the Rosie: people with the plague often had a bright rose-colored rash that people would see and make a large ring around them. A pocket full of posies: people without the plague always carried around lots of posies. They believed posies would protect them from getting ill. Ashes, Ashes: When people died, sometimes they would be burnt to ashes. Then those ashes would be put in a jar and buried. In this way, there was enough room in the graveyards for everyone. We all fall down: ‘falling down’ meant dying and many people did die. [17] Variations of the same theory allow it to be applied to the American version of the rhyme and to medieval plagues.[18] In its various forms, the interpretation has entered into popular culture and has been used elsewhere to make oblique reference to the plague.[19] (For 'hidden meaning' in other nursery rhymes see Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary, Humpty Dumpty, Jack Be Nimble, Little Jack Horner and Cock Robin.)"
    Some see the glass as half empty, some see it as half full. I see a glass that's too big.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Just Trivia

    Clay, is this true?

    Ahh, isn't he such an Angel?
    How could you possibly shoot at him?

  3. #3

    Default Re: Just Trivia

    That was better than the stuff Trapper was spreading.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Just Trivia

    Quote Originally Posted by 352ndDeacon
    That was better than the stuff Trapper was spreading.
    Spreading ???
    Some see the glass as half empty, some see it as half full. I see a glass that's too big.

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