If Walls Could Talk : An Intimate History of the Home Book
by Lucy Worsley
Why did the flushing toilet take two centuries to catch on?
Why did Samuel Pepys never give his mistresses an orgasm?
Why did medieval people sleep sitting up? When were the two 'dirty centuries'? Why did gas lighting cause Victorian ladies to faint?
Why, for centuries, did people fear fruit? All these questions - and more - are answered in this juicy, truly intimate history of the home.
Through the bedroom, bathroom, living room and kitchen, Lucy Worsley explores what people actually did in bed, in the bath, at the table, and at the stove.
From sauce-stirring to breast-feeding, teeth-cleaning to masturbation, getting dressed to getting married, this book will make you see your home with new eyes.
- Format: Book
- Pages: 368 pages, Illustrations (some col.)
- Publisher: Faber & Faber
- Publication Date: 05/01/2012
- Category: British & Irish history
- ISBN: 9780571259540
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Review by jcbrunner
Lucy Worsley is the charmingly quirky presenter of the BBC documentary series of the same name which explored how humans lived at home from medieval times onwards. Worsley divides her book into four parts/rooms: bed room, bath room, living room and kitchen. She tells many amazing stories about the past and reveals the ingenuity and craziness of how people used to deal with life's problems (unfortunately, the book lacks footnotes). What is missing from the book is the fifth room found in most houses: the stable/cellar/hobby room/garage, probably because that male domain was beyond Worsley's focus. Both an entertaining documentary and a good if superficial book.