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Author Topic:   Lighting candles and fetching water
posted 01-25-2006 02:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SwordOfErin   Click Here to Email SwordOfErin     Edit/Delete Message
I have two questions.
1. Without matches, how did people light candles? Using flint and steel seems like overkill.

2. When fetching water from a well...how do you do it? I just remember the Disney wells with the bucket attached to a rope...but how do you get the water home? Do you pour it into another bucket, or untie the bucket from the well? And if you untie the bucket, does the next person need to bring another bucket?

Any help on either of these subjects would be appriciated.

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posted 01-25-2006 09:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Steve-O-Gerst   Click Here to Email Steve-O-Gerst     Edit/Delete Message
I'd imagine that many rooms had a fireplace, or torches, or other candles you could light a candle from. A single candle doesn't give off a lot of light, so there was probably a large number of them in each room (For the nobles, at least.)

In the rare event that someone needed light after dark, and EVERY available source of fire went out, I guess the flint and timber might be brought out... Or maybe whatever they were doing could wait until morning.

A lot of flims show people with a sort of yoke they put around their neck, which holds a bucket on either end. One even shows up in a Star Wars movie. I beleive there are some old paintings of them being used in period... It seems like a fairly straightforward idea, and probably was used for quite a while, so the typical question "Which period?" may not apply.

posted 01-26-2006 01:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Maria   Click Here to Email Maria     Edit/Delete Message
Fetching water, medieval style: the well has a bucket. You get the bucket out, you pour the water in your own bucket and go home. The well bucket is attached on a chain or on a rope. Chain tends to rust, rope brokes faster than chain.

[This message has been edited by Maria (edited 01-26-2006).]

posted 01-26-2006 01:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Maria   Click Here to Email Maria     Edit/Delete Message
As for fire, the general rule was that you never let the fire in the fireplace go out. If you did, you were considered a lazy wife and had to go borrowing from your neighbours.

posted 01-26-2006 01:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Maria   Click Here to Email Maria     Edit/Delete Message
Two tipes of fountains I know about: http://www.vaideenii.ro/img/fundatia/img-fantana.jpg http://miscarea.com/timoc-romani-fantana.jpg
Both are still used in romanian villages. Drank water from something that looked like the last picture, it was sweeter than tap water. Cleaning them can be a nightmare. In the medieval times, during wars, if the peasants had to flee the village, they poisoned the fountains.

posted 01-26-2006 08:55 PM           Edit/Delete Message
In medieval times candles where very expensive and only the wealthy would have used them.
Water from a well was notoriously unhealthy so ale (small beer) was drank instead.

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posted 01-27-2006 08:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Merlin   Click Here to Email Merlin     Edit/Delete Message
Not all water was so unhealthy. There were two main types of wells: One that was so deep to reach the ground-water (don't know if the word is correct), and that was probably not so healthy. The other gathered rain-water and had filtering-systems. I don't think it was any problem to drink from the second type.

All times are PT (US)

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