Our Year Of Living (Beautifully) Without WalMart

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

brilliant antique facts

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:

These are interesting...

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, Pease 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.

And that's the truth...Now, whoever said History was boring ! ! !