A Slight Exaggeration Methinks.

Log in

SmokingPipes.com Updates

Watch for Updates Twice a Week

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

Tobacco Treasures Ad

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

Drucquers Banner

mawnansmiff

Preferred Member
Oct 14, 2015
6,021
3,110
Sunny Cornwall, UK.
One of my current reads is 'A Restitution of Decayed Intelligence in Antiquities' by Richard Verstegan 1655 (though first published in 1634) which is a history of Britain from the earliest times.

Now oftentimes when reading such books one has to be aware that the author might have an agenda or be otherwise skewed in his opinions and so I have a huge bucket of salt at hand but hey ho, these tomes make great reading.

However, last night I came upon a real screamer and I shall transcribe it as it appears in the book.

"There dyed in the city of Paris, in the year of our Lord 1514, a woman named Toland Baillie, at the age of 88 years, and in the eighth year of her widowhood, who there lieth in the Church-yard of St. Innocents, by whose epitaph it appeareth, that there were two hundred fourscore and fifteen children issued from herself, while herself yet lived".

And in the margin we have...

"Three hundred Children lacking five, issued from one Woman, and all lived in her life time".

Of all the tall stories I have ever read, this one really takes the biscuit and this is only page 3 of a total of 264 so I wonder what other pearls of wisdom I might stumble upon before I reach the end :oops:

Regards,

Jay.
 

WVOldFart

Preferred Member
Sep 1, 2021
602
1,745
Romney, WV
The record for most births by one woman is 69 children. She was a Russian lady who had 27 births from 1725 to 1765. Of those 27 births she had 16 pairs of twins, 7 sets of triplets and 4 sets of quadruplets. Obviously she and her husband knew what to do on those cold Russian nights.
 

mortonbriar

Preferred Member
Oct 25, 2013
1,757
2,518
New Zealand
Years ago my wife took a paper on the 'Practises and Philosophy of History', I enjoyed hearing about it too when she came home from lectures, and one thing that stood out to me is the general idea that you can learn more history about the time that a piece was written than the time being wrote about...
 

HawkeyeLinus

Preferred Member
Oct 16, 2020
774
3,060
Iowa
One of my current reads is 'A Restitution of Decayed Intelligence in Antiquities' by Richard Verstegan 1655 (though first published in 1634) which is a history of Britain from the earliest times.

Now oftentimes when reading such books one has to be aware that the author might have an agenda or be otherwise skewed in his opinions and so I have a huge bucket of salt at hand but hey ho, these tomes make great reading.

However, last night I came upon a real screamer and I shall transcribe it as it appears in the book.

"There dyed in the city of Paris, in the year of our Lord 1514, a woman named Toland Baillie, at the age of 88 years, and in the eighth year of her widowhood, who there lieth in the Church-yard of St. Innocents, by whose epitaph it appeareth, that there were two hundred fourscore and fifteen children issued from herself, while herself yet lived".

And in the margin we have...

"Three hundred Children lacking five, issued from one Woman, and all lived in her life time".

Of all the tall stories I have ever read, this one really takes the biscuit and this is only page 3 of a total of 264 so I wonder what other pearls of wisdom I might stumble upon before I reach the end :oops:

Regards,

Jay.
She was a dog.
 
  • Like
Reactions: B.Lew

magicpiper

Preferred Member
Jul 9, 2018
579
1,514
MCO
Can you imagine being the fella that went in at #150 or higher? Can’t imagine it being much of an experience. Probably had a fairly noticeable echo.
 

elessar

Preferred Member
Apr 24, 2019
587
1,117
Norm: Carla, do you suppose?
Carla: Oh, no, no. No, Norm. Don't look at me. I got four kids and I sure ain't looking for anymore.
Norm: I'm not asking you to have sex with the guy.
Carla: Doesn't matter. I'm what you call a fast breeder. A man winks at me and I'm three months along.
 
  • Like
  • Haha
Reactions: mingc and jpmcwjr

mso489

Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
36,670
40,147
Fertility has always been a human fetish in writings and in art. Spewing children is a reassurance that the species goes on, all the more so when you had to have five or six kids to enjoy the probability that a few would reach adulthood and have children of their own. Most couples lost a child or more in infancy or early childhood. Infectious diseases were the main culprit. This was true to the turn of the Nineteenth Century.

elessar, funny dialogue; I've been in crowds so packed I feared a potential paternity suit.
 

Infantry23

Senior Member
Nov 8, 2020
445
1,045
41
Smithsburg, Maryland
I'm inclined to agree with @bullet08. I have a large family and we're catholic and there's no possibility of this from one woman. But it seems to me that maybe they are totaling her children and their children's children, etc. I suppose if you have 15 kids by the time you're 40, they each have 5-7 kids, etc it could be possible to have 295 issued from her. (I don't know what the math on that is, it's too early in the morning for me, but you get the idea)
 

mawnansmiff

Preferred Member
Oct 14, 2015
6,021
3,110
Sunny Cornwall, UK.
I'm inclined to agree with @bullet08. I have a large family and we're catholic and there's no possibility of this from one woman. But it seems to me that maybe they are totaling her children and their children's children, etc. I suppose if you have 15 kids by the time you're 40, they each have 5-7 kids, etc it could be possible to have 295 issued from her. (I don't know what the math on that is, it's too early in the morning for me, but you get the idea)
I get what you're saying chum but the text clearly states "issued from herself" so no ambiguity there, they were her offspring.

When all is said and done, it is obvious that it's an absolute impossibility for one woman to produce that many children.

Regards,

Jay.
 
  • Like
Reactions: mingc and jpmcwjr

frozenchurchwarden

Preferred Member
Mar 1, 2014
3,084
2,823
With a short generational cycle through most of history a woman that age should have at least five generations of children underneath her.
Remember that's 300 living descendents, the other half of the children would have died at infancy.
 

SBC

Senior Member
Oct 6, 2021
470
1,362
NE Wisconsin
Certainly the surface reading of the phrase "issued from herself" seems obvious, and nobody could be blamed for taking it in that sense (the most brilliant fellows might take it in that sense); but, for whatever it's worth, traditional conceptions (get it? conceptions?) of "offspring" were multi-generational ad infinitum. So for instance the Jews to whom Jesus speaks in John 8:33-39 state that Abraham is their father and that they are his children; or again, Hebrews 7:10 states that Levi paid tithes to Melchizedek, being in the loins of his ancestor Abraham.

And assuming traditional marrying ages (we moderns delay things insanely long, by historical standards), five generations being alive at once can be common.
(I myself have a photo with my kids, myself, my father, his mother, and her mother, all together.)

Studies have indicated that the average number children that a couple will have if they neither attempt to have children nor attempt not to have children is 8. Some couples are far less fertile than that, and some couples are far more fertile than that, but that is the average if couples do not try to time things one way or the other.

Exponents are powerful. If we assume that every individual will have 8 children, then a person would have 8 children, 64 grandchildren, 512 great-grandchildren, and 4,096 great-great grandchildren.

Even allowing for lower fertility and higher mortality, it turns out that a few hundred descendants within your lifetime is not inconceivable (there I go again! "inconceivable"!).
 
  • Like
Reactions: philobeddoe