marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,

tidbits cross time

One had to be careful to put the cat out at night in the days of fireplaces. Cats getting into the coals had set many homes on fire.

Rosemary for remembrance -- and so it was appeared at Tudor ceremonies, such as weddings, funerals, and christenings.

In ancient China, there was an injuction that if you bought a concubine whose surname you did not know, you had to divine for it. The children of a concubine with the same surname would not prosper; the separation of men's and women's surnames was a great principle of ritual.

Madder dye was used in Roman Britain. However, it was no longer used after, which indicates that it was probably imported as a dye, not as a plant.

One of the highest status schools in Tsarist Russia was His Imperial Majesty's Corps of Pages, a military school for the sons of high-ranking officers and gentry. It was suppressed by the Revolution, but revived under Stalin (with a new name, but still essential the same).

A writer in Zhou China said that even the eldest son of the Son of Heaven was a shi -- generic noble -- at birth. One ascended by acquiring titles and offices after birth; one did not have them then.

In Dark Ages Normandy, knights were sometimes listed as attached to a manor -- the same way peasants were.

Diocletian was the first Roman emperor to wear a diadem. He later quit and turned to raising cabbages. An offer to reinstate him was coutnered by the claim that if they saw the cabbages he was raising, they would not make the offer.

In ancient China, one used a different verb for dying according to the rank of the person

In Winchester, not only mayors but also their wives were required to wear scarlet gowns.

Alexander the Great got into a fight at his father's second wedding. With a guy who took his father's hints that maybe Alexander wasn't legitimate and so toasted to the hope of a legitimate heir.

In Maoist China, The White-Haired Girl was said to be so vivid that a soldier had to be restrained from shooting the actor playing the villain, and after that the soldiers were required to unload their guns before attending.

In 13th century England, men who held lands that were knight's fees were forced to become knights or pay fines. Soon after, this distraint of knighthood was imposed on any man of age who held lands worth 20 pounds a year.

The Russian title knyaz, usually translated "prince," means "male-line descendant of a tsar," no matter how distant the descent.

Hay is better for straw beds than straw itself -- and barley, for instance, is better than wheat. Various herbs were mixed in; obviously all those called "bedstraw" of which lady's bedstraw was the best.

In ancient China, one ruler was rebuked for even thinking about fishing; a ruler only hunted such animals as were used in sacrifice, either as offering or as part of the implements.

Children's graves from Anglo-Saxon England are, for goods, chiefly marked with beads.
Tags: historical tidbits

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