Thursday, November 03, 2011

Body Visitors

I would just like to share a quote I have just come across on a website about plagues. I felt it too good to keep to myself.

'When St. Thomas à Becket was prepared for burial in England in 1170, he was found to be wearing (from the outside in) (i) a large brown mantle, (ii) a white surplice, (iii) a coat of lambs' wool, (iv) a woolen pelisse, (v) another woolen pelisse, (vi) the black robe of the Benedictine order, (vii) a shirt, and (viii) a tight-fitting suit of coarse hair-cloth covered on the exterior with linen. During preparation for burial the cold English air stimulated so many of the critters occupying his hair suit that it "boiled over with them like water in a simmering cauldron."'


Blogger Jud said...

As if I needed another reason to be thankful that I didn't live in the Middle Ages, you have supplied a wonderful one here.

Thu Nov 03, 05:37:00 pm  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Heh, heh. Agreed! Particularly vivid image, I thought!

Thu Nov 03, 05:40:00 pm  
Anonymous Nik Perring said...


Thu Nov 03, 07:11:00 pm  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...


Thu Nov 03, 07:17:00 pm  
Anonymous Mary said...

Suddenly I'm feeling particularly crawly. :)

Sat Nov 05, 01:02:00 am  
Blogger Sue Guiney said...

Yikes! thanks for sharing, I think :-)

Sat Nov 05, 10:11:00 am  
Blogger Writer Pat Newcombe said...

Fabulousa!! Now that's what I call dressing for the occasion!

Sat Nov 05, 10:44:00 am  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Exactly what I felt, Mary! Which is why I just had to share :-)

My pleasure, Sue *evil grin*

Hi Pat! Heh. Yes, quite so....

Sat Nov 05, 12:57:00 pm  
Anonymous marly youmans said...

Love that! Reminds me of the descriptions of the opening of eighteenth-century "heads," those towering peaks of hair: the bugs and mice would shoot away from air and light when the hairdresser "opened the head."

It also reminds me of a marvelous description in Leon Garfield's "Smith." If you have not read it, you should, Clare--I feel sure you would like it very much.

Fri Nov 25, 06:27:00 am  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Thanks Marly - I've not read either of those. I shall add to the wishlist.

Fri Nov 25, 08:46:00 am  

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