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Warm and Snug: The History of the Bed

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In this book, Lawrence Wright takes a look at the place where we spend a third of our lives - bed. From a Neolithic stone bed unearthed at Skara Brae to the bed (c. 1350 BC) from Tutankhamen's tomb, from stark Anglo-Saxon designs to ornate early Renaissance beds and elaborate State bedchambers, this is a journey through the history of social, sexual and sanitary attitudes to the design of beds. Illustrated with over 200 images, including early wood-engravings and etchings and later contemporary drawings, this ...

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Overview

In this book, Lawrence Wright takes a look at the place where we spend a third of our lives - bed. From a Neolithic stone bed unearthed at Skara Brae to the bed (c. 1350 BC) from Tutankhamen's tomb, from stark Anglo-Saxon designs to ornate early Renaissance beds and elaborate State bedchambers, this is a journey through the history of social, sexual and sanitary attitudes to the design of beds. Illustrated with over 200 images, including early wood-engravings and etchings and later contemporary drawings, this book explores beautiful, bizarre and humorous approaches to beds. Chippendale, in his Chinese period, created an elegant lacquered and gilt bed in strange contrast to his fantastic design for one with such an elaborate and overpowering superstructure that the bed itself looks like a small cushion. In modern times, the need for space inspired more practical designs such as wardrobe beds and American metal folding beds. Filled with a wealth of curious facts this is an ideal book for anyone interested in the history of everyday things.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780750937283
  • Publisher: The History Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2004
  • Series: Sutton History Classics
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.32 (w) x 8.56 (h) x 1.11 (d)

Meet the Author

Lawrence Wright
Lawrence Wright
An award-winning author, screenwriter, and staff writer for The New Yorker, Lawrence Wright has won acclaim for his in-depth investigations into groups from evangelical Christians to Al-Qaeda. He's even written a one-man play, "My Trip to al-Qaeda," about his adventures in researching The Looming Tower, his National Book Award contender.

Biography

Lawrence Wright is an author and screenwriter, and a staff writer for The New Yorker magazine.

He is a graduate of Tulane University, in New Orleans, Louisiana, and the American University in Cairo, where he taught English and received an M.A. in Applied Linguistics in 1969. Upon his return to the U.S. in 1971, Wright began his writing career at the Race Relations Reporter in Nashville, Tennessee. Two years later, he went to work for Southern Voices, a publication of the Southern Regional Council in Atlanta, Georgia, and began to freelance for various national magazines. In 1980, Wright returned to Texas to work for Texas Monthly. He also became a contributing editor to Rolling Stone. In December, 1992, he joined the staff of The New Yorker.

Wright has published six books: City Children, Country Summer (Scribner, 1979), In the New World: Growing Up with America, 1960-1984 (Knopf, 1988), Saints & Sinners (Knopf, 1993), Remembering Satan (Knopf, 1994), Twins: Genes, Environment, and the Mystery of Identity (Weidenfeld & Nicholson, 1997; Wiley & Sons, 1998), and God's Favorite (Simon & Schuster, 2000).

His history of Al Qaeda, The Looming Tower, was published by Knopf in August 2006. A portion of that book, "The Man Behind Bin Laden," was published in The New Yorker and won the 2002 Overseas Press Club's Ed Cunningham Award for best magazine reporting. He has also won the National Magazine Award for Reporting as well as the John Bartlow Martin Award for Public Interest Magazine Journalism.

Wright is the co-writer (with Ed Zwick and Menno Meyjes) of The Siege, starring Denzel Washington, Bruce Willis and Annette Bening, which appeared in November 1998. He also wrote the script of the Showtime movie, Noriega: God's Favorite, directed by Roger Spottiswoode and starring Bob Hoskins, which aired in April 2000. Currently he is working on a script for MGM about John O'Neill, the former head of the FBI's office of counterterrorism in New York, who died on 9/11.

Wright is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He also serves as the keyboard player in the Austin-based blues band, Who Do.

Biography courtesy of the author's official web site.

Good To Know

"I play the keyboards in an Austin blues band, WhoDo," Wright told us in our interview. "I've found that playing music with friends is about the most fun a grownup can have. I didn't take up the piano until I was thirty-eight and a half because I wanted to play 'Great Balls of Fire' on my fortieth birthday. I guess the point is that it's never too late to acquire a new passion."
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    1. Hometown:
      Austin, Texas
    1. Date of Birth:
      August 2, 1947
    2. Place of Birth:
      Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
    1. Education:
      B.A., Tulane University, 1969; M.A. (Applied Linguistics), American University in Cairo, 1971
    2. Website:

Table of Contents

Author's Preface vii
1 The Bed of Cleopatra 1
2 Biblical Beds 7
3 Homer Nods 9
4 Roman Repose 11
5 Byzantine Beds 14
6 Bench and Straw 17
7 Painted Chambers 23
8 Sooty Bowers 30
9 In Camisiam Jacere 33
10 Virtuous Adultery 36
11 The Dorter 42
12 Tarteryn and Baudekyn 47
13 Hanggyd Beddes 52
14 Lit de Parade 56
15 Elizabeth Slept Here 62
16 Ye Olde Four-Poster 70
17 Host and Hostess 75
18 Stuart Frolics 79
19 And So to Bed 87
20 Births, Marriages and Deaths 93
21 Riches Litz 101
22 Murdered in Our Beds 114
23 Afrayd of Sprights 119
24 Cold Harbours 125
25 Sleep's Foes 131
26 Requisate Foolerys 135
27 Hail, Glorious Structure! 138
28 The Celestial Bed 148
29 Adam to Pugin 151
30 Pioneers! O Pioneers! 154
31 Pickwick Slept Here 160
32 Pestered with Buggs 165
33 Nouryces Use Lullynges 168
34 Odd Jobs in Bed 177
35 To Bedward be You Merry 186
36 This Delicate Ambrosia 194
37 Double or Twin? 199
38 Rise and Shine 203
39 The Dorm 212
40 He Gat No Heat 217
41 Terribly Strange Beds 224
42 Charms and Omens 233
43 Springs and Stuffings 237
44 Beds Blown and Slung 241
45 Whimsical Chayres 248
46 Traveller's Rest 260
47 The Holy of Holies 275
48 The Seamy Side 285
49 The Dying House 292
50 To Be Had of Gorringe 296
51 Palace Pains 308
52 Delicious Depravity 310
53 The American Renaissance 315
54 Good Beds for Single Men 320
55 Blueprints for Bedrooms 325
56 Quintessential Comfort 331
57 Bedtime in Space 338
58 Envoi 341
Bibliography 342
Acknowledgements 346
Illustrations 347
Index 352
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