Aug 4, 2019

Now, who ever said history is boring?!?

Whoever said History is boring ......

1500s England :
Most people got married in June because they took their yearly bath in May, and they still smelled pretty good by June.....However, since they were starting to smell, 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: a thresh hold.🤔

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 for 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 whisky. 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, lead 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.🤪

Now, whoever said History was boring???

( An interesting forward)

Sep 18, 2018

The miracle of Madurai Meenakshi Amman

A British Collector named Rous Peter  was appointed as Collector of Madurai from 1812 to 1828.

Though a Christian by faith, he respected all faiths including Hinduism and also honored local practices.

Collector Peter was the temple administrator of the Meenakshi Amman Temple and conducted all his duties with sincerity and honesty and respected the religious sentiments of all people.

Collector Rous Peter respected and treated people of all faiths equally and this noble trait earned him the popular nickname ‘Peter Pandian'

Goddess Meenakshi Amman Temple was situated between Collector Peter's residence and office.

Everyday he used to go to the office by his horse and while crossing the temple, he got down from his horse, removed the hat and his shoes and crossed the whole path on his foot.

Through this small gesture he expressed his reverence to the Goddess!

One day there was a heavy downpour in Madurai city and River Vaigai was in spate.

Collector was sleeping in his residence and was suddenly disturbed and woken up by the sound of anklets and he left his bed to find out from where the sound had came.

He saw a small girl wearing pattuvastrams (silk garments) and precious ornaments and addressing him as 'Peter come this way'.

And he came out to follow her and was running behind the little girl to find out who she was!

As he came out of the house and was running, he was shocked as he turned to see behind him, his residence (whole bungalow) being washed away by the flood waters of River Vaigai!

He turned to follow the girl but she disappeared into thin air!

He saw that the girl ran without any shoes and was wearing anklets.

He beleived that his devotion for Mother Goddess Meenakshi  had saved his life.

Later, he wished to give a gift to Lord Meenakshi Amman & consulted the priest of temple and ordered for a pair of golden shoes for Goddess Meenakshi Amman.

It is thus that the pair of Paadhukams consisting of

412 rubies,
72 emeralds,
80 diamonds

were made and donated to the temple.

His name was sculpted as "Peter" on the shoes.

Till this day the pair of Paadhukams are known as 'Peter Paadhukam'

Every year at the time of 'Chaitra Festival', utsava moorthy of Goddess Meenakshi Amman is decorated with the Padukams.

This is the incidence that had  happened 200 years back in 1818 and for all those who have faith and belief Goddess Meenakshi had been benevolent with her blessings.