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, 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. Drawn from across the world, spanning a million years of humanity, this book is a smorgasbord of historical delights. It is a history of all those things you always wondered-and many you have never considered. It is the story of your life, one million years in the making.
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"Everything you do during the day, even checking your email, has history behind it. Matthew Lloyd Davies narrates this work with an elegant British voice, drawing laughs from the author's humor as he sets scenes across time. Greg Jenner starts out with ancient Egyptian dawn rituals to explain the origins of each of your daily tasks. Some things, like train times and movable type, are obvious, but there's much to learn as well. Listeners may not know, for example, that Plato conceived of the alarm clock. Starting with the chapter human waste, Jenner includes some earthy language. It's quite funny but may have too much saltiness for some listeners. Overall, the barrage of facts may not sink in completely, but it's entertaining. J.A.S. © AudioFile 2016, Portland, Maine"
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