Saturday, February 7, 2009

Facts about the 1500s

Most of you people probably know this stuff, but I thought it was interesting... so... here goes...

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 f
alling 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.
ry day they lit the fire and added things to the pot. They
ate mo
stly 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 h
ad 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 plate s 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

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 a person 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, an d 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..

Did you guys know this stuff? Leave a comment and let me know!

Do you know any cool facts about this time era? Leave a comment and let me know!


  1. ... I'm gunna need a little more explanation than that...

  2. thats cool!
    I didn't know any of it. See, you learn something new every day :-) See you in the morning!

  3. Tia, your blog looks awesome!!
    I'm so proud of you.
    Is it okay if I link to you in my blogroll?

  4. WOW! That graveyard thing is creepy to the max, but pretty neat!

  5. Aunt Lala-
    Sure! That's absolutely fine!
    Would it be ok with you if I followed yours?

    I know right!!!!
    Freaky stuff right there...

  6. I don't really want to explain the gong farmer. In a nutshell he cleared out the garderobe.

    And if you don't know what a garderobe is, well, you're not missing much.

  7. Haha, alright, I have no idea what that is. But I'll look it up..

  8. The gong farmer was the owner back then of the Royal Flush porta-potty thing... If you don't understand that, well then you never will. :)

  9. Hahahaha, alright I think I'm getting it =)


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