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Early Medieval; 12th century
On Display: Museum of London: Medieval London: Daily Life and the Thames: Human Life
In 1173 William FitzStephen described how Londoners went skating on polished bone skates like this when the marsh on the north of the city, known as the Moor or Moorfields, froze in winter. 'When the great marsh which washes the northern walls of the city freezes, crowds of young men go out to play on the ice. Some of them fit shinbones of cattle on their feet, tying them round their ankles. They take a stick with an iron spike in their hands and strike it regularly on the ice, and are carried along as fast as a flying bird or a bolt from a catapult.'
H 30 mm; L 245 mm; W 45 mm
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