Tuesday, February 7, 2012

What was a Towncrier/Bellman

Back before we had television, radio, and internet to communicate announcements and news, towns had a town crier or a bellman that would rink a hand bell and shout out the public announcements from the court and other public facilities.

First, they would ring the bell and shout out "Hear Ye!" or "Oyez!" (Oyez also means hear ye).

These men were the main way that people were able to keep up with news and announcements in Medieval times as during those days most people were illiterate and were unable to read new papers or other types of postings. Town criers announced proclamations, local bylaws, market days, and adverts.

Some town criers also had lanterns when they would make announcements of the time or news at night:

Town Crier Lantern
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