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Smell of ancient communities

tabularasa
Posts: 200
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12/27/2014 2:23:16 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
When I watch movies or read about Roman villages, medieval villages, etc., I always imagine that the homes, streets and people smelled very bad. Bathing and other forms of personal hygiene were not well practiced. Latrine pales were dumped in the streets. What must it have been like to live in such times and places? Would you get used to the smell?
1. I already googled it.

2. Give me an argument. Spell it out. "You're wrong," is not an argument.
Mirza
Posts: 16,992
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12/27/2014 6:18:55 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I place doubt on this myth. Surely, hygienic practices were not of the level we are used to have today, but they were, nevertheless, pleasing; to an extent, at lest. In Medieval Times, people often bathed, and designed natural, refreshing scents, which, as is the case in our times, managed to obstruct the extension of abominable odours. Regardless, one would get used to it with ease.
Blade-of-Truth
Posts: 5,020
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12/27/2014 7:18:00 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/27/2014 2:23:16 PM, tabularasa wrote:
When I watch movies or read about Roman villages, medieval villages, etc., I always imagine that the homes, streets and people smelled very bad. Bathing and other forms of personal hygiene were not well practiced. Latrine pales were dumped in the streets. What must it have been like to live in such times and places? Would you get used to the smell?

If you are born into that environment, it's what becomes your norm. So, I don't think they'd necessarily have to "get used" to the smell, since if they were born their that's all they'd be accustomed to in the first place.

Also, I agree with mirza that they had oils, materials for improving scents, and water to still bathe in. Alot of oils were given as gifts to powerful people due to the fresh scents they provided.

Compared to our modern times, I think it'd depend on where you go. There are still 3rd world countries and tribal societies that live like they did 2,000 years ago. Bathing in rivers, etc.,
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Blade-of-Truth
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12/27/2014 7:18:50 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/27/2014 7:18:00 PM, Blade-of-Truth wrote:
At 12/27/2014 2:23:16 PM, tabularasa wrote:
When I watch movies or read about Roman villages, medieval villages, etc., I always imagine that the homes, streets and people smelled very bad. Bathing and other forms of personal hygiene were not well practiced. Latrine pales were dumped in the streets. What must it have been like to live in such times and places? Would you get used to the smell?

If you are born into that environment, it's what becomes your norm. So, I don't think they'd necessarily have to "get used" to the smell, since if they were born *there that's all they'd be accustomed to in the first place.

Also, I agree with mirza that they had oils, materials for improving scents, and water to still bathe in. Alot of oils were given as gifts to powerful people due to the fresh scents they provided.

Compared to our modern times, I think it'd depend on where you go. There are still 3rd world countries and tribal societies that live like they did 2,000 years ago. Bathing in rivers, etc.,

fix'd
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SNP1
Posts: 2,403
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12/27/2014 9:23:13 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I doubt this because:
1) There were still hygiene, though not on our level.
2) They would most likely be nose blind to the smell, and therefore there would not be a noticeable stench (to them).
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Wylted
Posts: 21,167
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12/28/2014 9:43:46 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 12/27/2014 2:23:16 PM, tabularasa wrote:
When I watch movies or read about Roman villages, medieval villages, etc., I always imagine that the homes, streets and people smelled very bad. Bathing and other forms of personal hygiene were not well practiced. Latrine pales were dumped in the streets. What must it have been like to live in such times and places? Would you get used to the smell?

Rome had sewer systems and they seemed like very hygienic people.