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More from Tom Almeroth-Williams

Smithfield livestock market

Before Smithfield sold meat, it sold live animals and lots of them – thousands of cattle, sheep and pigs every single week – all of which had to be driven on-the-hoof through the streets of the world’s busiest city. The trade was worth a fortune but wreaked havoc.

Pig-keeping on the Turnmill Brook

Two strips of land running either side of the Turnmill Brook between Farringdon and Clerkenwell provided an ideal spot to fatten pigs in the 18th century. Some considered them a filthy nuisance, others valuable recycling machines. This place takes us to the heart of that conflict. Wellies recommended.

The Exeter Change Menagerie

Elephants, big cats, monkeys and everything in between all packed into a first-floor petting zoo. What could go wrong? Lots, it turned out, but not before Exeter Change became one of Georgian London’s most famous attractions introducing thousands of people to exotic beasts from around the world for the very first time.

More in United Kingdom

Sexperts of Medieval England

Impotence was sufficient grounds for annulment, but how to prove that a man experienced erectile disfunction? In 1433, one court asked ‘seven honest women’ to ascertain whether or not the defendant was capable of an erection with that timeless method, a lapdance.

Further Reading:
Bronach Kane, “Impotence and Virginity in the Late Medieval Ecclesiastical Court of York,” Borthwick Paper 114 (2008)