For whan he spak, he was anon bore doun
With hende Nicholas and Alisoun.
They tolden every man that he was wood;
He was agast so of Nowelis flood
Thurgh fantasie that of his vanytee
He hadde yboght hym knedyng tubbes thre,
And hadde hem hanged in the roof above;
And that he preyed hem, for Goddes love,
To sitten in the roof, par compaignye.

– Geoffrey Chaucer

The Canterbury Tales, The Miller’s Tale. There is much deceit in the tale, but the declaration by Nicholas and Alison that John is crazy when he tells everyone about the predicted flood and the tubs has to be one of the most cruel. Thinking the flood was coming, John had cut the rope that held his boat-tub to the ceiling and it crashed to the floor startling the neighbors. They all laugh at his lunacy when they hear of his elaborate preparations for the second deluge!