Wednesday, 24 February 2010

"PLAGUE AND DISASTER"

In the early days Edinburgh, well pretty much everywhere wasn't the most hygienic of places, disease was rife, bad sanitary conditions made it even worse,people used to shout "Gardy Lou" when they were throwing their human waste out of the windows, yes sounds lovely lol but that was the way they lived.The words Gardy Lou came from the French meaning Gardez L'eau, which meant "watch out for the water" sounds like you had to watch out for a lot more lol. Mounds of human excrement were heaped in the streets all over the Edinburgh, imagine what the smell must have been like? An Englishman once said that Edinburgh was the most Healthful place to live in if it wasn't for the  nasty and slothful people (charming) he commented on the fact he had to hold his nose everywhere he went as the smell was unbearable.In the early 1700's a Captain was a bit more graphic in his description , he was given a guide to get to his lodgings, the guide reminded him to "Hud yer Haunde" meaning hold your hand with a sash or something because the opening of a window in the streets meant one thing, yes it was gonna fly lol, even in his dwelling the Captain had to hold the sheet over his head as the neighbours throwing out their waste would waft everywhere, the smell was unbearable.The captain reported having had a good stay and the company was excellent however he commented on the fact that the living conditions were horrendous, wonder why lol!!
Can you imagine how many people died of diseases in the period of "Gardez Lous"? One visitor Edinburgh did not like was the pestilence, or Plague.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

THE STORY OF "BURKE AND HARE"

You may remember in the early 19th Century there was a craze for medical growth, students eager to learn how the body operated, what killed people and also eager to make a name for themselves in the World of medicine.
There wasn't the technology we share today, Students did not have labs they could work in and learn they sometimes carried out their studies in dimly lit rooms without the proper tools and sterilisation methods we have today.

Friday, 19 February 2010

"THE HISTORY OF EDINBURGH CASTLE"

Staying on the theme of History, I was lucky, I grew up in a Historical City boasting many things to see, all within walking distance, today I am going to talk about EDINBURGH CASTLE.


I visited the Castle a few times in my youth but never really appreciated it in its entirety and beauty, we all imagine it as a centre piece for post cards, someone visits Edinburgh and they are sure to send you a post card with the Castle being the attraction, but what do you know about it?

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

"THE REAL WILLIAM WALLACE"

Forget the movie, Mel Gibson looked nothing like the real William Wallace, and off course the movie was glamorized for box office purposes.
William Wallace was indeed a hero of Scottish people around the 12th Century. 
William Wallace was born in 1270 in a Scottish Town called Ayr, or in the immediate area of Ayrshire and yes this was also the same birthplace as Rabby Burns famous Scots poet and author.
Wallace was taller than Mel Gibson which was unusual for that time, not many people were tall but he towered in comparison.
He got his title "braveheart" from the Scottish people because he battled with Edward Longshanks a ruthless English King, he wanted the Scots to fight along side him against the French but the Scots refused so Edward sent in an army to capture the leader of the Scots who at the time was a kind of King but only recognized by Edward himself.
John Baliol ruled Scotland because the former King of Scotland had died, there were 13 people seeking rights to the Scottish throne Baliol was named the vassel King, meaning he had no real power.

Edward was enraged because Baliol refused to team up with him so sent in an army to Scotland to arrest him.
Discontentment ruled over Scotland for many a year because there was no real leadership, so an army was raised and in charge of that army was Sir William Wallace.


After driving out Edwards army Wallace was made "Guardian of Scotland"
The final battle was lost and Longshanks stood in victory against the Scots, William Wallace was betrayed by a kinsman he was arrested taken to London and "hung drawn and quartered" meaning his body was posted on the 4 corners of the UK as a warning to other people who would commit treason against longshanks.

There was no romance as the film depicted, the script was glamorized, William Wallace did fight for Scotland
and  to the Scottish people was a hero.,

History has always fascinated me...I hope you enjoyed this story.... of the real
"William Wallace" "Braveheart"

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