What did the burghers of Besztercebánya do in their free time in the sixteenth century? Because of the great fire of 1500, the archive material is much better conserved for the town of Besztercebánya for the sixteenth century. In this period we can reconstruct the free time of the burghers of Besztercebánya. The election of the mayor of the town gave occasion for merrymaking. Weddings and christenings were private occasions for merrymaking but the statutes of the town of Besztercebánya tried to regulate these occasions, too. The most frequent way to pass time was for the men in Besztercebánya to sit in the tavern and to drink and chat. At nine o'clock the 'Bierglocke' (the beer bell) indicated the time to close the pubs. Burghers not only drank, they played cards or dices. Another type of entertainment was the school theatre of Besztercebánya. Another centre of social life was represented by the town baths. The book culture of the town of Besztercebánya was very rich too, the greatest library belonged to Johann Dernschwam, with more than two thousand volumes.
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