In my research for Book 2 (which is now in the final editing stage!) I’ve learned some valuable 17th century tips to prevent your child being exchanged for an enchanted block of wood or a senile fairy, otherwise known as a ‘changeling’.
1. Lay the father’s clothing over the cradle.
2. Never let the fire go out.
3. Sprinkle urine around the cot.
4. Put something made of iron or brass in the cot, like a pair of tongs, a knife or scissors (yep, you heard that right).
5. Baptise it asap.
If you’re unlucky enough that none of these work and you end up with a child who is ill-tempered, puckered-featured and with an insatiable appetite my book will provide a few 17th century sure-fire solutions. Although, come to think of it, this seems to apply to most of the kids I know…