History Podcasts

#76: Did People in the Past Get 8 Hours of Sleep a Night?

#76: Did People in the Past Get 8 Hours of Sleep a Night?

Doctors love to say that eight hours of nightly rest is vital to good health. But did people in the past get this much sleep, more, or less? And how did the lack of a lightbulb affect their sleep cycles.

Turns out quite a bit. People actually hit the hay very early and woke up a few hours each night-sort of a reverse midnight siesta. Important cultural activity took place during this time, including scheduled prayers, visits to neighbors, and doctors orders that children be conceived at this time.

Learn more about how your ancestors slept, or didn't sleep.

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