Victorian period

Victorian period


In Victorian London each parish in the city had a jakesman (refuse officer) who cleaned out the public facilities. The carts of “refuse” was transported out of the city at night.

During the Victorian period, powdered chalk and cuttlefish provided tooth polish and acted as a gentle abrasion. They were the two most common ingredients in dentifrices of the time.

Cynisca, the daughter of a Spartan king and sister to a king, loved horses. She persuaded her brother to allow her to participate in Olympic Chariot Races. In the Olympics of 396 and 392 B.C.E., she won first place.

Medical treatment in the Middle Ages consisted mainly of bloodletting or “bleeding” for more serious illnesses. Other, less serious ones, were treated with disgusting substances like: urine, animal feces, & powdered earthworms.

Arsenic was a major component of many household items during the Victorian era. It was also widely consumed in different forms by both men and women.

Arsenic was a major ingredient in many cosmetics at the time. It was said to make skin look younger. Men were told that consuming arsenic pills could stimulate their libido.

As you might expect, none of that worked. These products likely caused extreme sickness and accidental death before people figured out how terrible arsenic is.

Source Material: Life in Medieval Times by Marjorie Rowling, 4000 Years of Uppity Women by Vicki Leon, and How to be a Victorian by Ruth Goodman.