Aviva is in the process of archiving hundreds of years of records, from its beginnings as the Hand in Hand Fire and Life Insurance Society in 1696.
The Guardian revealed the archiving exercise has thrown up some little gems showing the ingenious ways people have of hurting themselves and getting insurance payouts.
A Belfast salesman who had climbed onto the roof of a tram to watch someone else having an accident, in something of a karmic twist, hit his own head on a pole. He claimed £7 (£401) in 1904.
An Essex merchant in 1892 managed to hurt his eye by throwing rice (the olden day equivalent of spangly confetti) at a wedding. He was awarded £50 (£2,994) from his policy.
3) Child's Play
A Lancashire grocer slipped over whilst playing nineteenth century parlour classic, blind man's bluff (no Xbox back then). Far from being embarrassed, the plucky grocer claimed on his insurance policy and got £15 (£724) in 1878.
4) Hard to swallow
A Great Yarmouth ship-builder, in his haste to gobble his dinner, accidentally slurped back a fishbone in 1900. He got £1,000 (£57,000).
5) Sunny Swansea
An artist, perhaps painting the scene in the Welsh seaside town, was blown over by a strong gust of wind in 1886 and was paid £30 (£1,796).
6) Sweet Dreams
In 1878, a Birmingham innkeeper swallowed a glug of sleeping medicine hoping for a good night's kip. Unfortunately, he had mistakenly drunk a bottle of poison. He was awarded £1,000 (£48,310).
7) Blame the Wife
A Glasgow gallant leapt out of bed to catch his wife, who was fainting, in 1895 and injured himself in the process. He got £42 (£2,575).
8) Bathing can be bad for you
A pharmacist from Dublin slipped over on the marble steps as he went for a refreshing Turkish bath and received £33 (£1,594) in 1885.
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