Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

Cobble Cobble (Stones)

29 Nov
I have an obsession.
(one of many).
 

It may seem random but it’s mine: Cobblestone Streets. There’s no doubt about it – I LOVE cobblestone streets. I love their uneven nature, their disproportionate looks, their splashes of color (even if faded by time), their romantic European charm and, most importantly, the fact that no single stone is the same.

Ever wonder where cobble stone streets came from? The thought occurred to me while spending the day in Soho, NYC this past Thanksgiving break:

According to our “trusty” source, Wikipedia, the word “cobblestone” is “derived from the very old English word ‘cob,'” which can mean “rounded lump.” Doesn’t sound terribly attractive, but, ironically enough, many cobblestone streets are some of the world’s most picturesque locations. Take a look:

Gamla stan, Stockholm – Sweden (source)

Boston, MA (Source)

St. Michael’s Mount, Cornwall – UK, photo  (that’s me in the green!)

Historically, cobblestone streets date back to the Roman empire and stretched all the way into the 19th century where they were reduced to a standard size of 4 inches – not for the comfort of humans but, instead, for the increased comfort of horses (so let’s not flatter ourselves). It was later in the 19th century, for the purpose of better drainage and with the invention of the car, that most remaining cobblestone streets were sadly paved over with asphalt. However, as with anything in life, the less there is of something – the more valuable it is. So, this Thanksgiving, while walking through Soho’s many alleyways, I was thankful for cobblestone streets. And, despite the fact that they may have been made for the convenience of horses – my love for them remains in tact.

Soho. NYC. Photo taken by me.

Till the next History lesson…

Sources: eHow, SharingTravelExperiences, Wikipedia

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