The Horrible Jobs Royalty Asked People To Perform | Worst Jobs | Absolute History

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Shared March 20, 2019

Tony Robinson continues his look at The Worst Jobs in History with a rundown on the worst royal jobs. As Tony takes on the work traditionally done at court we learn of the miserable lot of food tasters, whipping boys, falconers, and laundry women who beat Elizabethan laundry with paddles similar to cricket bats.

Tony has a go at knitting chain mail; marvelling at the intricacies and tedium of fashioning one link, let alone a suit which used 200,000. Then there was the lance-makers' task of carving hundreds of lances for jousting tournaments or the shining of shoes for Edwardian hunting parties. Armourers, fire-workers, grooms of the chamber, hall boys and royal messengers all had their moments of misery.

But the most unpleasant job of all fell to the unfortunate lackeys who were responsible for the rich purple dye for the monarch's coronation robes. The purple maker created the royal colour by stomping up and down on rotting shellfish which had been soaking in human urine.

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