Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Cleanliness and Class

From Pen and Pension:
Being clean was expensive. All water for washing or bathing would have to be fetched in buckets from a well or a stream. Then it had to be heated by burning suitable amounts of wood or coal. To heat enough even for a shallow bath would take a good deal of fuel — fuel which otherwise could have been used for cooking or heating a room.

Many of the wealthy would have used perfumes to keep themselves smelling good — another expense beyond the reach of the poorer classes — and had access to clean underclothes, shirts and bed-linen whenever they wanted. If you couldn’t afford the large quantity of linens needed for this, you might wash, but you wouldn’t stay clean for very long. This was a time when washing clothes was both labour-intensive and expensive, as I shall show in an upcoming post, so even the better off might undertake it once only every few weeks. (Read more.)
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3 comments:

Hans Georg Lundahl said...

Φιλολoγικά/Philologica : Answering William Savage's Cleanliness and Class
http://filolohika.blogspot.com/2016/10/answering-william-savages-cleanliness.html

Jon said...

Interesting piece on colonial cleanliness from the Colonial Williamsburg web site:


http://www.history.org/foundation/journal/Autumn00/bathe.cfm

Summer said...

Quite interesting♥ Happy Wednesday ♥