Category Archives: Tid-bits

An Intriguing Variant on Wife Selling

The following item was printed in the Ipswich Journal. It could be a variant form of the well-attested practice of wife-selling, or it could have been a ploy all along to get hold of a fine animal to sell, since … Continue reading

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The 18th-Century Gutter Press

Observers from continental European countries during the 18th century were amazed – and envious – at the lack of censorship in Britain. There were some laws against too free a use of the printing press, such as the charge of … Continue reading

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An 18th-century Public Apology

One of the penalties that could be enforced on guilty parties in the eighteenth century was to pay for a public apology and admission of guilt to be published in a suitable local newspaper or newspapers. It seems to have … Continue reading

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Home Remedies for Horses, 1707

There were no veterinarians in 1707, yet horses were essential to daily life. It’s not surprising therefore that Katherine Windham, mistress of Felbrigg Hall, made notes of remedies that she might make up to deal with illnesses amongst the horses … Continue reading

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Rough Justice, Norfolk 1772

A look at the local papers sometimes throws up some unexpected gems: stories that illuminate real life in the community, rather than the more artificial and mannered activities of politicians and their kind. Here’s a case of some very rough … Continue reading

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Be Careful What You Wish For!

The following poem appeared in the Norfolk Chronicle in 1784. A citizen of you know where, Discoursing with his dearest dear, As o’er the silver stream they rode Close cheek by jowl together stow’d, Of fiddle-fiddle gan to chatter, He … Continue reading

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Buried At The crossroads

Here’s a little extra for Hallowe’en, proving that old customs lingered on in some rural parts of England. It’s from the Bury and Norwich Post. October 2nd 1783 There was an inquisition taken at Ballingdon in Essex near Sudbury on … Continue reading

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