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When getting rid of your waste was dangerous to those below

Human attitudes to getting rid of waste created by humans themselves have only recently been, in historical terms, something that they greatly cared about. Being clean and having a working toilet we’re not top of the list of considerations during the Medieval period up into the late Nineteenth century. It took two cases of the Bubonic plague, innumerable outbreaks of waterborne diseases and general squalor before anyone thought it might be a good idea to try public health. The last Britons to properly give this a go had been those living under the Roman Empire.

Detail of an illustration of a woman emptying her chamber pot out the window. Medieval sanitation wasn’t very sanitary.

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When the Roman legions left the first thing that the Britons looked for was how to defend themselves against all the now invading Germanic tribes that they had originally asked for help from in the first place. The Angles, Saxons and Jutes had no truck with working latrines and as they expanded and merged with the Britons the resulting Anglo-Saxon’s didn’t either.

This set the pattern for Human waste control in Britain throughout the Dark Ages and Middle Ages. By the Middle Ages the populations of towns were growing. There was no provision for sanitation, other than the river, and if this was too far away then the only option was to chuck it out the window. If the Medieval housewife had cause to wonder where Drainage Cleaning Near Me was then “the street” was the answer and not https://www.wilkinson-env.co.uk/cctv-drain-surveys-gloucester/ as it should be today.