Monday, October 11, 2010

Being a Kid in the Middle Ages

Being a child in the Middle Ages would not have been much fun. First, you probably wouldn't have lived too long. Only one child in ten lived to their tenth birthday. The food in the Middle Ages was so bad you could die from drinking a glass of water. It was poor nutrition that killed the kids.(Of course, the sand in their bread might have helped a little.) Children were also more susceptible to the plague. Unfortunately, the priests blamed the children, saying it was because the children occasionally skipped church or disliked their parents.(Why did adults get the plague then, if God was punishing the kids?) Some parents who were beggars would break their children's limbs to help gain sympathy. People would give generously to beggars with twisted, suffering children. It was considered wrong to be too kind to children. One boy would greet his father with, "My right reverent and worshipful father, I praise your good fatherhood in the most humble way possible and humbly beg your good fatherhood for my daily blessing." That might get a little old after a while.(But if you're planning to ask for an increase in your allowance, go ahead. It can't hurt!) And these above treatments were for boys. Girls were forbidden to swear (which I do have to agree with) jerk their shoulders around, or laugh too loud. A poem said that if girls were disobedient they should be whipped. And if you survived long enough, you had to attend school.

Some of the things about school weren't so bad. You didn't have to go if you were a girl. It was thought girls who could write would spend too much time writing love letters. They didn't give out homework, and there was no such thing as a poor speller - you could spell things any way you wanted to.(Or should I say "Anny wae u wantd too"?) But school was, in most ways worse. If you made a mistake, you were beaten. If you knew Latin, you had to speak it. Every word of a different language would earn you a lash. The rules were mostly the same, except for a few things about being punished for ripping up your schoolmate's pillow or throwing the school into disorder.

Well, that's all for now. Be glad you didn't grow up in the Middle Ages!

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