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Nate Lockwood has posted 36 annotations/comments since 10 April 2013.

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About Thursday 22 October 1663

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

Were there stereotypes then of women being poor in arithmetic?

AFAIK arithmetic was considered a skill needed by tradesman, useless and beneath for most other men then and for at least another century or so. Education? Not so much for women of the leisure class.

I don't know what was considered arithmetic at the time but I expect numerate people were expected to be able add and subtract, but multiplication, division, etc. were advanced skills.

About Wednesday 1 April 1663

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

A "live oak" is one that is not seasonally deciduous; it has green leaves all year long. Where there are several species of oaks 'live oak' may be contrasted with "black oak" which are seasonally deciduous and, at least in Southern California, really do look black in the winter. In California live oaks are said to have year around access to water whereas black oaks may not and consequently drop their leaves in the colder, dry, early winter. Quercus agrifolia leaves are small and stiff, which are adaptations to our hot dry summers and fall. Live oaks can grow at any time of year so have the potential of growing larger than their cousins.

About Saturday 14 February 1662/63

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

Hanging wild fowl or aging beef decomposes the connective tissue when lysosomes in the cells break down releasing many kinds (~50) of enzymes that break down biological tissues; I don't think bacteria play any part.

Beef is butchered, lysosomes break down tissue, and the cuts are allowed dry which concentrates the flavor. I doubt if fowl tend to dry. As the beef dries a fungus may grow on the surface and produce a crust. Aging is also a way of preserving beef so that it may be stored. IIRC dried beef has been mentioned in the diary.

I've eaten reconstituted beef produced this way in Brasil, it's a specialty of the Brasilian state of Minas Gerais, and is quite tasty.

About Thursday 12 February 1662/63

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

I first learned of Castile Soap in a chemistry class. We made the soap and then added gasoline to make napalm. While production napalm is not made from castile soap the 'palm' comes from palmitic acid (a constituent of palm oil). I believe that the 'na' relates to Sodium (Na).

About Thursday 12 February 1662/63

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

Susan of the south, my Grandmother raised me from about 1940-1939 and the use of soap that you described was one of her remedies. It must have impressed me as I still remember it.

About Sunday 29 June 1662

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

Wouldn't Sam have all the shutters closed to avoid the 'bad' night air and possibility of intruders? That would certainly limit the influence of dawn's early light.

About Sunday 4 May 1662

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

The black ribbon is probably the (outer) bandage for the wound on his arm from giving blood and black so as not to show the blood.

About Sunday 4 May 1662

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

"Maggots are also being used in wounds to get rid of dead tissue. (They will digest only the dead tissue). No pain involved."

What matters to me is what's bitten off, not what's digested.

About Friday 2 May 1662

Nate Lockwood  •  Link

Paul, Pepys wrote the diary in shorthand which, for practical purposes, was a cypher and unlikely to be understood by anyone else. I assume that the French and Spanish was in shorthand as well.