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culture

Vintage Toronto Ads: Slaughtering the Price of Glasses

Taking the low ground when it comes to low prices.

Source: the Telegram, November 26. 1915.

Source: the Telegram, November 26. 1915.

While stores employ colourful, action-packaged language to highlight price reductions during sales, there’s a fine line between promoting bargains and promoting violence. While terms like “blowout sale” and “explosive deals” hint at gruesome circumstances, rarely do stores offer “slaughter prices.” Who wants images of corpses or animals headed to a packing plant dancing through their head while shopping?

Perhaps it was the times. When this ad appeared, readers were saturated with daily updates on the carnage on European battlefields. The slaughter associated with the First World War would have troubled anyone’s eyes and caused headaches for anyone with family on the front.

Luckily, any customers traumatized by in-store signs promoting “slaughter prices” were gently assured by a skilled specialist that no harm would occur during the free eye test.

415 Yonge Street is currently occupied by an office tower.

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