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Printed On The Thames (Dead Men's Teeth Book 5)

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The Thames used to freeze over during particularly cold winters. In the years when it froze, huge Frost Fairs would pop up. These were carnivals on the ice, full of vibrancy and colour, with beer tents, rudimentary fairground rides, bonfires, football matches, plays, dances… all sorts of weird and wonderful sights. Local printers would carry their printing presses onto the The Thames used to freeze over during particularly cold winters. In the years when it froze, huge Frost Fairs would pop up. These were carnivals on the ice, full of vibrancy and colour, with beer tents, rudimentary fairground rides, bonfires, football matches, plays, dances… all sorts of weird and wonderful sights. Local printers would carry their printing presses onto the ice, and charge people to have little keepsake tokens printed. These were like postcards, perhaps with a short poem or limerick on, the year of the fair and the name of the person who bought it. The British Library collections contain several of these tokens printed on the ice between 1683 and 1814. The phenomena of the Frost Fair struck me as quite surreal, and so I wanted to explore it through the eyes of a person under some narcotic influence. At the time of the fairs, the aristocracy would be taking opiates like laudanum for curing all manner of pains, as well as snuff and very strong gin. Cocaine drops came a little later on than the period in which this story is set, but I decided to use a little dramatic license as I needed an ‘upper’ as well as a ‘downer’ in my dabbling with the nature of reality. This is a buddy story of two young aristocrats coming of age in the late 1700’s. What fun they must have had at the Frost Fair. The Thames doesn’t freeze anymore because London Bridge was rebuilt with less arches and support piers, which means the water flows a lot faster than it did.


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The Thames used to freeze over during particularly cold winters. In the years when it froze, huge Frost Fairs would pop up. These were carnivals on the ice, full of vibrancy and colour, with beer tents, rudimentary fairground rides, bonfires, football matches, plays, dances… all sorts of weird and wonderful sights. Local printers would carry their printing presses onto the The Thames used to freeze over during particularly cold winters. In the years when it froze, huge Frost Fairs would pop up. These were carnivals on the ice, full of vibrancy and colour, with beer tents, rudimentary fairground rides, bonfires, football matches, plays, dances… all sorts of weird and wonderful sights. Local printers would carry their printing presses onto the ice, and charge people to have little keepsake tokens printed. These were like postcards, perhaps with a short poem or limerick on, the year of the fair and the name of the person who bought it. The British Library collections contain several of these tokens printed on the ice between 1683 and 1814. The phenomena of the Frost Fair struck me as quite surreal, and so I wanted to explore it through the eyes of a person under some narcotic influence. At the time of the fairs, the aristocracy would be taking opiates like laudanum for curing all manner of pains, as well as snuff and very strong gin. Cocaine drops came a little later on than the period in which this story is set, but I decided to use a little dramatic license as I needed an ‘upper’ as well as a ‘downer’ in my dabbling with the nature of reality. This is a buddy story of two young aristocrats coming of age in the late 1700’s. What fun they must have had at the Frost Fair. The Thames doesn’t freeze anymore because London Bridge was rebuilt with less arches and support piers, which means the water flows a lot faster than it did.

8 review for Printed On The Thames (Dead Men's Teeth Book 5)

  1. 5 out of 5

    Charles Rhodes

  2. 4 out of 5

    Josef Fjall

  3. 5 out of 5

    Christa Leask

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jimmy

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen Leask

  6. 4 out of 5

    Mardibooks

  7. 5 out of 5

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  8. 4 out of 5

    Alec Brownie

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