Posted by Keith Pelton on February 04, 2004
In Reply to: "Sleeping over the rope" posted by Henry on February 04, 2004
: : Has anyone heard of this phrase or similar in respect of how people used to sleep in doss houses?
: : Heard it yesterday in a Hancock's Half Hour made in 1956.
: : Many thanks, Harry
: Was Anthony Aloysius Hancock on BBC7? In a doss house, to save space, people didn't sleep on the floor. A rope was strung across the room and people slept with their arms over it. I don't know if they were standing or sitting - it wouldn't have been very comfortable either way.
I'm not sure this would be it, but during that time mentioned and before. Beds didn't have boards to hold up their straw filled mattresses. They used ropes and would tighten them every night before they went to bed. So one could say that that would be "sleeping over the rope". Also where the term "Sleep tight (tightening of the ropes), Don't let the bed bugs bite" came from.
I could be wrong, you guys on this site seem to have all the right answers when it comes to these phrases. Just trying to help.