April 10, 2020, 04:17:29 AM

Author Topic: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?  (Read 3464 times)

Offline Skip

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #30 on: July 29, 2018, 05:39:35 PM »
I agree that brothels occur frequently in fantasy tales, and that this reflects a bit of laziness, because it's obvious and doesn't take much work, and very likely some sexism. I'll offer a couple of alternatives, with no expectation that they'll be used: the mill and the bathhouse.

Mills were often used as a hiding place. They were large buildings, with multiple levels and a fair amount of noise. Perfect for a bandit on the run. Perfect, also, for a lovers' tryst. Millers were widely suspected of all sorts of nefarious dealings, from cheating on the grain to hiding shady people.

The bathhouse was also large and was also a place where any number of shady dealings could occur, from relatively innocuous gambling or private business deals, to prostitution, robbery, even murder. With multiple rooms, a bathhouse provides a good setting for our fantasy travelers to meet and share information.

The problem--though perhaps also it is an opportunity--with both these establishments is that they are unfamiliar to the modern reader. They require some description. But for anyone looking to avoid both the tavern and the brothel, you might take a look at the mill and the bathhouse. Also, these were not just in the city. Both could be found in the countryside, though typically adjacent to a village or castle.

Offline Rostum

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #31 on: July 31, 2018, 02:23:14 PM »
Mills are used to perform a number of tasks, initially to move water by their nature they are often remote as they must be built in exposed places to work, strong (and defensible) buildings not to be torn down by the sails. They were often used as a storehouse for this reason. Don't forget there are also powder mills once gunpowder is a thing and you avoid those.

I wrote about baths in the paws a while back.

Quote
In English cities and towns there is often a Bathgate st. Towns grow up on crossroads and walled towns often had 4 (or more) gates as a result. This is how quarters spring up. One quarter will have your markets and dirty industries and a lot of your working poor and beggars living within it. Anyone could enter that gate and stay or go as they pleased, but could not necessarily move about the rest of the town with harsh penalties under local bylaws.

 Travellers wishing to move about the more affluent areas would enter by the Bathgate and have their horses and persons attended to before entering the town proper. This was often on church or monastic land and a source of income for the church. So a traveller arrives by the Bathgate  His horses and dogs are curried and checked to be in good health. He retires to the communal bath and his linens, undershirt, breekes (underwear) any socks or under hose are laundered.  Boots and hat cleaned and outer clothes steamed and beaten then dried in a hot room or aired in good weather. In the bath there will be at least one sluice room with warmed water to wash off the road and such then a communal bath when you were clean enough to enter a communal space. The baths of course often grew into inns and brothels and gaming rooms, all on church land.
So having had your clothes laundered and yourself bathed, got a hot meal inside you and a nights sleep you would then move into the town proper in a fit state to be seen in public and with the risk of spreading disease from foreign parts reduced.

Offline Eclipse

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Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #32 on: February 13, 2020, 08:42:53 AM »
Write what you know authors are always telling us  ;)
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Offline Rostum

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #33 on: February 14, 2020, 01:44:47 AM »
Thats mostly nothing for me then.

Offline J.R. Darewood

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Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #34 on: February 14, 2020, 05:12:46 AM »
Write what you know authors are always telling us  ;)

Hmmmm, I know toilets.
And former prostitutes
And gang members
And dragons
And plenty of sorcery
And obviously I live in a castle.

Offline Bender

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #35 on: February 19, 2020, 06:34:41 PM »
I had no clue on bathgate and I've never seen that used in any book I've read till date.
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Offline Nora

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Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #36 on: February 19, 2020, 11:34:50 PM »
Edinburgh has a Candlemaker Row. A street that goes along the ruins of the historical wall of the city, where all candlemakers were forced to operate, because if their shit caught on fire, then it'd be over there by the kirk graveyard and the wall, as far as possible from the rest of the city.

Also, yeah bath houses were very often brothels.



Look at this 15th century King checking out this establishment!
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Offline Bender

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #37 on: February 20, 2020, 03:03:21 AM »
Everyone on right is wearing a headgear and the one on left a cape..... But little else. Seriously weird!
"I shall hunt your firstborn children and laugh with glee as I tell them of your death in terrible detail, with many unpleasant adjectives!" - M-Bot

"Who needs science when you have a dragon?" - Neil DeGrasse Tyson in Sharknado 6

Offline isos81

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #38 on: February 20, 2020, 06:23:23 AM »
The king looks surprised, like he was saying "What the heck is going on here" ;D
Kallor shrugged. 'I've walked this land when the T'lan Imass were but children. I've commanded armies a hundred thousand strong. I've spread the fire of my wrath across entire continents, and sat alone upon tall thrones. Do you grasp the meaning of this?'

'Yes' said Caladan Brood. 'You never learn'

Offline Rostum

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #39 on: February 20, 2020, 07:06:59 AM »
Quote
Everyone on right is wearing a headgear and the one on left a cape..... But little else. Seriously weird!

This is the 15th century you don't want your naughty thoughts going up to heaven so you keep your head covered.

Offline ScarletBea

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Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #40 on: February 20, 2020, 07:50:14 AM »
We need a thread with these images and making up quotes, like this one ;D

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Offline Yora

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #41 on: February 20, 2020, 09:56:44 AM »
We are not standing on the shoulders of giants, but on a big tower of other dwarves.

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Offline ScarletBea

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Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #42 on: February 20, 2020, 09:58:00 AM »
Here it is.
;D
I meant that someone would post a medieval image, no words, and then we would add the funny comments, like we did above with the bath house one.
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Offline Bender

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #43 on: February 20, 2020, 02:26:53 PM »
Quote
Everyone on right is wearing a headgear and the one on left a cape..... But little else. Seriously weird!

This is the 15th century you don't want your naughty thoughts going up to heaven so you keep your head covered.

Ah, they haven't progressed to tin foil hat era yet. Makes sense.  ;)

Any explanation for a dancing dog to be present in there?
« Last Edit: February 20, 2020, 02:29:22 PM by Bender »
"I shall hunt your firstborn children and laugh with glee as I tell them of your death in terrible detail, with many unpleasant adjectives!" - M-Bot

"Who needs science when you have a dragon?" - Neil DeGrasse Tyson in Sharknado 6

Offline Rostum

Re: What is it with brothels and the fantasy genre?
« Reply #44 on: February 21, 2020, 07:02:18 AM »
oh believe me the tin hats are a thing. Foil not so much.