The Cold Yeare, 2009

by Nick


London and most of south east England are now thick with snow. Here in Epsom about 8 inches have already settled, and it shows no sign of stopping. Facebook, Twitter and my RSS feeds have been full of conversation about the weather, given that most people can’t get into work and are stuck at home. In particular I noted that Rich over at Chronologi Cogitationes had been using the time instead to look for appropriate pamphlets on EEBO.

Above is my own contribution. It’s the frontispiece fromThomas Dekker’s:

THE COLD YEARE. 1614. A deepe Snow: In which Men and Cattell have perished, To the generall losse of Farmers, Grasiers, Husbandmen, and all sorts of people in the Countrie; and no lesse hurtfull to Citizens. Written Dialogue-wise, in a plaine familiar talke betweene a London Shop-keeper, and a North-Country-man. In which, the Reader shall finde many thinges for his profit.

According to Dekker, it began snowing on 23 January and didn’t stop until 14 February, with freezing weather continuing into March. On the left you can see a man digging his cow out of the snowdrift, while at the top a horse falls into another drift – the early modern equivalent of the van I saw get stuck down the lane this morning.