Monday, August 19, 2019

A Secret History of Royal Palaces

As usual, what they say about Marie-Antoinette is not true. The Queen bathed not once a month but several times a week. She was known for her meticulous cleanliness and she made Louis bathe frequently, too. From History:
A 1675 report offered this assessment of the Louvre Palace in Paris: “On the grand staircases” and “behind the doors and almost everywhere one sees there a mass of excrement, one smells a thousand unbearable stenches caused by calls of nature which everyone goes to do there every day.” 
According to historian Alison Weir, author of Henry VIII: The King and his Court, the fastidious Henry VIII “waged a constant battle against the dirt, dust, and smells that were unavoidable when so many people lived in one establishment,” which was fairly unusual for the time. The king slept on a bed surrounded by furs to keep small creatures and vermin away, and visitors were warned not to “wipe or rub their hands upon none arras [tapestries] of the King’s whereby they might be hurted.” (Read more.)

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