The History of Leith

August 5, 2007

LEISURE IN SCOTLAND 1840-1940

To speak of leisure in the way we know it today, or even as it developed in the 19th century, would be misleading for this period. The Calvinistic revolution of the 17th century allowed the religious authorities to stamp out what they considered to be impieties and profanities. Christmas and other feast days associated with Catholicism which had allowed for more public holidays were swept away as popish follies. Work and prayer seemed to be the order of the
day. However, the common people used weddings and funerals as excuses to let their hair down for several days at a time. Fairs and hiring markets for agricultural servants also provided excuses for drunkenness and promiscuity.

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