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A Million Years in a Day A History of Everyday Life by Greg Jenner

A Million Years in a Day A History of Everyday Life

The Real World   

Sue Baker's view...

Greg Jenner takes us on an amusing and breathtaking journey through a day and a night detailing our countless rituals and their historical beginnings. Cleaning teeth, telling the time, using cutlery, reading a book, just some of the things we do without thinking and like everything else in this book, they all have a beginning, often many thousands of years in our past. Look afresh at your toothbrush and its 4,000 year history – a book that will have you looking at everyday items with fresh eyes.

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Who is Sue Baker

The Good Book Guide logo The Good Book Guide Review. We get through our day taking pretty much everything we use or everything we do for granted. Shower, toothbrush, breakfast, clothing, work, supper and bed. But life hasn’t always been like that, and our ancestors’ outlook, abilities and opportunities were remarkably different. In this humorous and bracing jog through the history of everyday objects, and common day attitudes, we get to see our life from a new angle. There are those areas that have seen complete transformation, usually revolving around cleanliness and hygiene, and those areas where we share remarkably similar attitudes and behaviours. It is a fun as well as an educational read.
~ Jonathan North


A Million Years in a Day A History of Everyday Life by Greg Jenner

Who invented beds? When did we start cleaning our teeth? How old are wine and beer? Which came first: the toilet seat or toilet paper? What was the first clock? Every day, from the moment our alarm clock wakes us in the morning until our head hits our pillow at night, we all take part in rituals that are millennia old. Structured around one ordinary day, A MILLION YEARS IN A DAY reveals the astonishing origins and development of the daily practices we take for granted. In this gloriously entertaining romp through human history Greg Jenner explores the gradual and often unexpected evolution of our daily routines. This is not a story of politics, wars or great events, instead Greg Jenner has scoured Roman rubbish bins, Egyptian tombs and Victorian sewers to bring us the most intriguing, surprising and sometimes downright silly nuggets from our past.

About the Author

Greg Jenner is the Historical Consultant to CBBC's multi-award-winning HORRIBLE HISTORIES and its various spin-offs. As well as contributing sketches and song lyrics, and co-writing Stephen Fry's links, Greg has been solely responsible for the factual accuracy of nearly 1,200 comedy sketches that span the entirety of human history. He studied at the University of York and, after dropping plans for a PhD, has also spent the past decade making historical documentaries and dramas for television. He is slightly obsessed with Twitter. Follow him: @greg_jenner

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Book Info

Publication date

30th November 1999


Greg Jenner

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