Would You Rather #40: Be rich and live 400 years ago or be poor and live today? 


(c) Wikipedia.org

I can’t even imagine myself living 50 years ago much more 4 centuries ago! As much as I try to picture it, my mind seems to be stretched to its limits with that length of time. But I guess, living the bourgeois life back then and living the sophisticated life in this era must have its similarities. But would it feel the same living poor in 1616 and 2016? I doubt it. Why, because the definition of poor has changed along the years and the tag ‘poor’ is subjective even depending on where you find yourself on the planet. 

To be honest, being rich makes life easier to live; it might have its own challenges but at least the basic necessities to survive have been sorted out without much struggle. Being poor means having to depend on the benevolence of others to barely survive. It stifles one’s ability to crave for bigger achievements when all energy is poured into acquiring the basic stuff.

What does it mean to live rich in the past? Living the comfy life whilst exploiting the lower classes (it still happens today, doesn’t it?). Amassing wealth and forming alliances to stay rich and powerful. Not to talk of the dark times-the dreadful slave trade. But I’m sure not all rich people were terrible back then (as it is now); some must have been charitable. The good thing about being rich is being in a position to help the less privileged and be known to be part of someone else’s success story.

(c) answersafrica.com

How does living poor today look like? Not having enough for your daily needs and some to put aside as savings. Not being able to cater for your health needs as you should. Always hoping that someone would drop a crumb off his table so you don’t go to bed on an empty tummy. Being paid for less than you deserve because your employer knows you’re desperate. Some are actually homeless. I’m sure you can add more to the list.

The brighter side of being poor today is that it is not a death sentence. There are countless stories of people who through hard work were able to change their fortunes from grass to grace. Being born poor is no longer an impediment. If one is determined to make it, he can make it without having to depend on family’s status or riches.

Living 400 years ago means missing out on all the scientific discoveries and technological advancements we are enjoying today. I feel blessed to be alive in this day and age regardless of my financial standing because of the many opportunities available to us today.

What about you? Would you prefer to be living like royalty centuries ago to living ‘poor’ today? Kindly share your thoughts.
© Josephine Amoako 2016

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31 Comments Add yours

  1. Oluwanifemi says:

    Hahaha…seriously who dznt want to be rich? Good content and catchy title👍

    Liked by 3 people

  2. joymanda says:

    I prefer to be rich and live 400 years ago. I believe people during that Era had activities and things they engaged in which served as a source of livelihood. Even 15 years ago when we didn’t have WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter and these sophisticated phones and series, we had By The Fireside, Kwasasa and the like which made us all happy. Lol
    So charley, I prefer the riches.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. joseyphina says:

      Lol… I feel you, sister. You make do with what you have, huh? Nice 👍

      Liked by 1 person

      1. joymanda says:

        Exactly 😊😊

        Liked by 1 person

  3. PoojaG says:

    Being rich sounds tempting but I would rather be poor and live today.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. joseyphina says:

      Great! Thanks for sharing your thoughts

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Amanya says:

    When poor sometimes you forget you’re living. I’d never want to exist as a poor man, never ever.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. joseyphina says:

      I understood. Poverty is soul crushing. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Amanya

      Liked by 1 person

  5. A thought provoking article indeed. Very well written. Well, it’s not an easy question to answer. In this world, if we do not have enough to eat and clothe ourselves, or even a decent dwelling, then it’s unfortunate and even in this century of modernization (technologically at least) there are so many people who have to face this struggle. Wealth is distributed unequally and not everyone benefits from the economy. Rich have everything in abundance (or excess) and they too have one stomach to fill twice or thrice a day and houses which are vacant most of the time. Being given everything in abundance also does not ensure they will be utilized properly. So, my answer to your question would be enough to eat, a decent dwelling, and knowledge in abundance; so that we can be grateful for what we have. We should strive to work with honesty and have enough for our ‘need’ and not for our ‘greed’. But if some people have more we should not be jealous. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. joseyphina says:

      Very insightful. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Amitav

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Ruchika says:

    It is indeed a very thought provoking article my friend.However, it isn’t easy to just answer a yes or no simply because if we talk about people who live in today’s era of technology and advancement, the title or tag of being “rich” is next to bland if they do not have an access to such a fast moving technology.So, I guess people back then had their own reasons to be called “rich” , which could just not be in terms of money and power or fame, but also in terms of cultural richness, richness in diversity and traditions. Today the definitions have changed.People who have greater access to the technology world are the so called rich and powerful.But yes, the bottom line here still lies in the fact that people who work really hard are able to catch up with the richness of today’s world, something that is equated with the elevation, growth and progress of technology combined with a chivalrous attitude towards life.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. joseyphina says:

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Ruchika ☺

      Like

  7. eddaz says:

    Hi Josephina. I nominated you for the 3 day quote challenge, although you are not obligated to participate but I would be glad if you do😘. Thanks.
    https://eddaz.com/2016/07/19/day-3-three-day-quote-challenge/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. joseyphina says:

      Thanks, Eddy. I’ve been nominated before though☺

      Liked by 1 person

      1. eddaz says:

        That’s alright. Fine with me.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. wgr56 says:

    Easy for me! Pass me the dough and the time machine!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. DamiLoves says:

    This is a difficult one, but I may consider riches 400years ago. Simply because a wealthy woman back then still had a right to make some choices of her own. Depending on where you are in today’s world, a poor woman will still be oppressed and abused, making it difficult for her to thrive.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. joseyphina says:

      You’re right. Being poor gives others the license to oppress you. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Dami☺

      Like

  10. Deb says:

    Considering my great, great, great grandfather was a famous chief, I would have preferred to live during that era…to an extent. I would have been royalty back then. But also, I would rather enjoy all that I have gotten used to…while being rich.Guess I can’t decide…very thought provoking indeed.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. joseyphina says:

      Yeah, difficult to choose but it must feel good to have royal blood flowing through your veins. Nice!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Fairen says:

    Rich…almost always

    Liked by 1 person

    1. joseyphina says:

      Lol… Thanks for sharing your thoughts ☺

      Liked by 1 person

  12. be poor and live in today. i know that sounds weird, but living 400 years ago..? Uh, no. Not going back to the age of jamestown and using the bathroom in buckets, thanks XD

    Liked by 2 people

    1. joseyphina says:

      Lol… I’m with you there!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Ufuomaee says:

    I’m happy to be alive today!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. D'Dream says:

    I will rather go for the latter. When present or pastt. I want to be Rich.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. joseyphina says:

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts, D.

      Liked by 1 person

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