Ideas from books, articles & podcasts.
The first picnic appeared in Les Charmans effects des barricades (1649), a burlesque satire on the perceived hypocrisy of the Fronde.
The main character, ‘Pique-Nique,’ is a glutton just like his friends, which stands in contrast to the food shortages caused by the rebellion. His...
During the 18th century, picnics became a pastime of the aristocracy and were a purely indoor affair. Attendees were still required to contribute by either bringing a dish, a drink or pay a share of the cost.
Picnics were associated with conversation and wit and seen as intellectua...
After the French Revolution, most aristocratic picnickers fled abroad to Britain and introduced the picnic to England. This led to a less refined and more raucous picnic, thanks to a 'Pic Nic Society,' founded by wealthy young Francophiles. Every member was required to bring a dish an...
In the 20th century, new modes of transport (trains, bicycles, and motor cars) made the countryside accessible to a greater number of the population.
Not long after, their popularity had grown so much that specialist picnic baskets were produced, and the contents became more standardized. ...
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