Halloween Special: Times of Epidemics

A plague doctor was a medicine worker who treated victims of the black death, the Justinian and bubonic varieties. They were hired directly by towns where outbreaks of disease were particularly pernicious. Since city coffers were covering their salaries, they treated everyone: both the wealthy and the poor. However, some plague doctors were known for…

Summer Learnin', Had Me a Blast

It’s the Summer Solstice! That means lots of people officially have one thing on their minds— vacation. Time off. Holidays in the sun full of romantic adventures. Before I get all Mary-Kate and Ashley movie on you, let me clarify that I’m here today to discuss rest and relaxation of a loftier, more erudite sort. During the seventeenth century,…

French Antique Furniture for Dummies

  If the word commode brings nothing to mind but toilet bowls, and you don’t know Louis le Bien-Aimé from Louis Armstrong, fret not! For what follows, a light hearted lesson on three major periods of French furniture making, will help you muddle through the fog. It’s more than just fancily carved drawer knobs and heavy-handed…

Timeless Tudors

Pastime with good company I love and shall, until I die. Grudge who list, but none deny! So God be pleased, thus live will I. – King Henry VIII of England  If anyone ever took pleasure in actively curating a pretty collection of companions and living as they alone pleased, it was England’s second Tudor…