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Photographer's Note

he Shambles (official name Shambles) is an old street in York, England, with overhanging timber-built shops, now occupied by souvenir shops as opposed to the original butchers). The word shambles comes from shammels, probably from the Anglo-Saxon Fleshammels (literally 'flesh-shelves'), the word for the shelves that butchers used to display their meat.

Saint Margaret Clitherow once lived on this street (she was married to a butcher who owned a shop on it). Five snickelways lead off the Shambles.

[edit] Origin of name

"Shambles" is an obsolete term for an open-air slaughterhouse and meat market. There are streets named "The Shambles" in some other UK towns (e.g., Worcester, Sevenoaks, Chesterfield and Armagh,) which also got their names from having been the sites on which butchers killed and dressed animals for consumption. The Shambles in Stroud still has the hinged wooden boards attached to the shops, and hosts a regular local market.

During that period there were no sanitary facilities or hygiene laws as exist today, and guts, offal and blood were thrown into a runnel down the middle of the street or open space where the butchering was carried out. Moving through the resulting mess must have been unpleasant but then, all forms of household waste were commonly thrown in the street anyway, so perhaps it was less disgusting to the people of that age than it would be during the present era.

By extension, any scene of total disorganisation and mess is now referred to as "a shambles". The word is probably derived from the Anglo-Saxon language.[With thanks to Wikipaedia.]
When you walk these streets you really feel to be walking in the past, but I wonder what the Elizabethans would have made of the purple paintwork?

tigra, cobbydale, feather, olivierduc has marked this note useful

Photo Information
  • Copyright: jean dwyer (jean11-3) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 794 W: 0 N: 788] (2799)
  • Genre: 地方
  • Medium: 彩色
  • Date Taken: 2006-12-31
  • Categories: 建築
  • Camera: SONY DSC-N1
  • Exposure:f/2.8, 1/40 seconds
  • More Photo Info: view
  • Photo Version:Original Version
  • Date Submitted: 2007-01-21 10:32
  • Favorites:1 [view]
Viewed: 2269
Points: 12
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