Here are some facts about the 1500s

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 f or 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, thread 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 ! ! ! 
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