katherine kerr of the Hermitage, her site


Making a Chapbook
Rowany Festival Chapbook AS39, First Edition
Rowany Festival Chapbook AS40, The Scurrilous Rag

[Main Printing & Manuscript Menu]

Chapbooks were so called because they were sold by peddlers known as chapmen, chap being an Old English term for trade (Hausman). Typically they were small, cheap booklets containing reprints of popular ballads, jests, gossip, recipes, horoscopes and rude stories, sometimes illustrated with suitably racy woodcuts (comparisons with modern women's magazines spring to mind….). In discussing one popular type of chapbook Cerniglia noted that:

many almanacs proved they were not too exalted for dull or uninspiring doggerel verse, even if the poetry appertained to medical advice. Likewise, some almanacs demonstrated sensationalism was not beneath their authors. Far-fetched prophesies, baseless political speculation and acidic social commentary could be found even in the most profitable publications.

They became popular in the mid-1500s, reaching their heyday over the following two centuries. These books appealed to the middle to lower classes who couldn't afford the higher quality printed and bound works but who would fork out tuppence for a collection of entertaining material. Chapbooks were particularly popular in Scotland, where literacy rates tended to be higher than elsewhere in the British Isles, at least according to the Scottish Chapbook Project.

Chapbooks were often made by folding a large sheet of paper into an octavo (so called because it produced eight pages), something akin to a tabloid paper. When produced with a cover, the latter were often made from recycled paper or poor quality vellum to keep costs down, and these helped make the chapbooks more robust than the single-sheet broadsides (typically song lyrics) or slip-poems of the time. Alison Plowden, writing in Elizabethan England, Life in an Age of Adventure, noted:

At the cheaper, and more remunerative, end of the trade, books and pamphlets sold for sixpence or a shilling (the equivalent of modern paperbacks) were illustrated with woodcuts and either just sewn together or roughly bound in a limp vellum cover.

In 16th-century England, small books of this nature were often sold in blue or brown paper wrappers, or often no covers at all, and stab-stitched through the side with three or five holes. These books were neither trimmed along the edges nor lettered on the outside. (Middleton, pg 11). Stab-stitching is a simple, period approach to attaching pages to a cover, although these days it is more commonly associated with Asian binding techniques (LaPlantz). A series of holes are punched through the cover and folded paper sheets (signatures), and sewn through with waxed linen thread. You can often see this approach in simple hand-bound journals today which have leather covers with light leather thonging used to hold the cover and signatures in place.

They provide an interesting example on which to base short-run booklet production for many SCA activities.

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Making a Blank-Page Chapbook

Small-scale, short-run paper-covered books are still called chapbooks. Because of their small size, they commonly use a quick binding stitch, called a pamphlet stitch, named as such because it was used in late period to collate pamphlets for private collections. Pamphlet stitch provides a quick, easy way to produce a small notebook in chapbook form, handy for hanging from a girdle or keeping in a pouch.

The equipment to produce a simple chapbook includes:

  • paper : 90gsm or more is better than the light photocopy/laser paper
  • cover material: leather, vellum, card, paper
  • unbleached linen thread waxed with beeswax (use ordinary cotton for a short-life item)
  • tapestry needle
  • bodkin or awl (or the potentially more readily available map pin)
  • bone folder (or fingernails)

Fold the paper in half and then in half again to produce a quarto (a signature which has four leaves, making eight pages). If you want to make a smaller notebook, fold in half again to produce an octavo (eight leaves; 16 pages). This is as many folds as you would want to do if starting with A4 stock.

Run a folder, back of a knife, or your fingernails along the creases to make them sharp. Depending on the type of paper you use, you may find folding in one direction easier than in another, due to the grain of the paper, but this is unlikely to have a major effect if you are using ordinary 80gsm printer paper.

You can stack a number of these folded signatures inside each other to give you more pages. Bear in mind that the more you attempt to stack, the thicker the spine are will be, and the less neat the alignment of pages. For simple chapbooks, this may not be a major issue, but there comes a point where you would have to consider using multiple signatures and different types of binding.

Cut a cover at least 3ml larger than the pages on all sides. Remember to measure against the unfolded signature (ie one which is showing two of the final pages in an open state). You can make the cover considerably wider, if so desired, to provide extra material which can be folded inside the chapbook to strengthen the cover and its edges.

Fold the cover in half and stack the signature/s inside with the spine folds aligned. You can use paper clips, bulldog clips or clothes-pegs to hold them tight, but with smaller notebooks this can be more hassle than it is worth.

Use a bodkin, awl or map pin to punch holes through the spine of the aligned pages and cover of the chapbook. Putting a folded cloth, such as a towel, under the cover and pages gives you something to punch through to, which makes it easier. Make a central hole; then, depending on the size of the pages, add a set of evenly spaced holes at the top and bottom. For small chapbooks with pages under 20cm in height, three holes should be adequate, otherwise make five holes.

Keep everything aligned!

Cut a piece of linen thread that is roughly twice the length of the chapbook. Lightly run the thread over the beeswax to help stiffen it and make it bind well when you come to knot it. Thread it through a tapestry needle.

For a three-hole pamphlet, start from the outside of the centre hole (you can start from the inside if you wish; there doesn't seem to have been any great consistency in approach). Hold a couple of inches of the thread as a tail and take the rest of the thread through the cover and paper into the notebook. Come back out at the top hole, then take the thread in at the bottom hole, by-passing the centre hole. This long stitch is what identifies this as a pamphlet stitch. Finally, come back out of the centre hole. Pull the thread in the direction of the sewing to tighten it at each hole. Make sure that the two ends of thread lie on either side of the long centre thread before tying off.

A five-hole pamphlet stitch follows the same pattern, with extra loops through the holes at the top and the bottom, and the long stitch crossing over the centre hole.

Once secured, carefully cut the edges of the folded paper to release the pages. Decorate the cover at will. You can use coloured thread or ribbon for the binding for greater decorative effect, though I haven't seen any period examples of this.

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Rowany Festival Chapbook AS39, First Edition

I made the mistake of chatting with Master Crispin Sexi about chapbooks and almanacs and, before I knew it, I'd volunteered to produce a chapbook for Festival. It was intended to be four pages, but kept growing as I got more and more great material from various authors; the final chapbook ended up being 16 pages.

Front page of the Rowany Festival Chapbook

The back page showing ads, a riddle and the colophon.

Rowany Festival Chapbook AS39, First Edition (PDF)
This is laid out to print as a quarto on A4 (ie four pages per A4, with a fold in the middle taking the final production page size to A5). Four sheets of A4 are required, printed double-sided. The period horoscope is missing -- I've lost the graphic.

It was a lot of fun to produce, particularly thanks to Crispin, Dame Yolande Kestevan and Anton de Stoc who provided the bulk of the third-party content. The material included:

Ane Scandalous intercept'd DESPATCH
found on a dead Courier
and address'd to a Foreign Power.

Being an Account of Twelfth Night Past
and the Events of the Coronation
as witness'd by One who was there
to Observe such Fashions & Activities
as were open to the Publick Eye.

An Inn-keeper's Life from one well school'd, Father Stephen Bastard

Roast Cat as You Wish to Eat It (the recipe, thanks to Drake Morgan)

Possibly the most contentious item was this one:

Ye Top Ten Ranked Songs of Lochac
All learned men know that by virtue of singing doth man rise above the common animals, most of which, though given the gift of bleating or baying, do not pursue the art of song, nor gain the joy that stemmeth from it. So too doth man rise above such beasts through virtue of his desire to ranke himself categorically against his fellowe men. To wit, I bring hereunder such a chart of men of song within this Kingdom, forsooth all shalt have no doubt where each is placed this day in rank and song by tavern crowds

There were certainly a lot of references at the Festival bardic evening to "a certain scurrilous rag" from various songsters regarding their ranking - looks like I have a title for next year's chapbook: The Scurrilous Rag™.

The almanac material was similar to that produced for my original Canterbury Faire one (more on that here).

Chapbook References

Ainsworth, William Harrison; The Combat of the Thirty
Benazra, Robert; The Predictions and Almanacs of Michel Nostradamus
Catholic Forum; Saints
Cerniglia, Keith A. The American Almanac and the Astrology Factor
Clement, Richard W.; Medieval and Renaissance Book Production - Printed Books
Davanzati, Bernardo; A Discourse Upon Coins, 1588; Avalon Project
Dialogue concerning the Exchequer, ca 1180; Avalon Project
Einhard: Life of Charlemagne, Book III; Medieval Sourcebook
Forster, Jennifer; Anticipating the Apocalypse: An Elizabethan Prophecy, Historian, Spring, 2001
Hausman, Nicholas; Chapbooks - Definition and Origin
Jones, Malcolm; The Secret Middle Ages; Sutton Publishing, 2002
Kollerstrom, Nick; Galileo's Astrology
Lawrence, Robert Dean, Medieval Belief in Day-Fatality; Houghton Mifflin, 1898
Lee, Jeff, typographer
Livingston, Michael:Modern Medieval Map Myths
Madore, David; The Calendar
Matthew of Westminter; Simon de Montfort's Rebellion 1265; Medieval Sourcebook
Michiele, Giovanni; on Mary I 1557; Primary Sources of the Tudor Age
Middleton, Bernard C; A History of English Craft Bookbinding Technique; Oak Knoll Press & the British Library, 1996
Renaissance Astrology; refs to Lilly and Ramesey and Cornelius Agrippa
Page, Sophie; Astrology in Medieval Manuscripts, British Library 2002
Plowden, Alison; Elizabethan England, Life in an Age of Adventure; Readers' Digest 1982
Renaissance Astrology
Roberts, Matt T & Etherington, Don; Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books - A Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology
Scottish Chapbook Project
Siebold, J; Cartographic Images, Maps of the Early Medieval Period 400-1300 A.D. Map; Monograph
Steele, Robert; Medieval Lore from Bartholomew Anglicus (1893)
Steinberg, S.H.; Five Hundred Years of Printing; Oak Knoll Press & the British Library, 1996

The astrological aspects come from an event horoscope drawn up for the time of Rowany Festival's opening court, using the chart and interpretations provided by the Astrolabe astrological service, which I have adapted into a period chart format. The text includes relevant material from Lilly and Ramesey relating to the planets, signs and placements. The selection of which planets to associate with which aspects of SCA culture was fairly arbitrary, but chosen with the traditional aspects and associations in mind. Here are a couple of examples

The Sign of the HERALDS
Saturn 20 Degrees Cancer.
Profound in Imagination, in his Acts severe, in words reserved, in giving very spare, in labour patient, in arguing or disputing grave. At times mistrustfull, outwardly dissembling, sluggish, suspicious, stubborn, a close lyar, murmuring, never contented, ever enslaving people by treachery, encouraging discord, through either ignorance or intelligence, but the ignorance is concealed.
Amongst Plants and Trees, those things which stupifie; those things never sown, and which never bear fruit.
Amongst Animals, all manner of creeping Creatures breeding of putrification; those living in holes; all that take much pains, slow, that feed grossly, and such as eat their young.
Amongst birds, those which have harsh voices, as Cranes, Peacocks, scrich-Owles. Amongst places, all stinking and mournful places; old, tottering houses, solitary dens.

The Sign of the LAUREL
Venus 02 Degrees Aries.
Affections are ready to hand and keen to be gratified. Venus in Aries provokes the desire and the performance, except where such is disorder'd through over-indulgence in the Fruit of the Vine. Venus takes pleasure not just in venereal arts, but also in jesting, dancing, wine, chess, draughts, ornaments, perfume, song, gold, silver, fine clothes. Those of this Signe are afflict'd with Lacke of tact as they are known to delight in pointing out the faults of others; studious and given to History, whether Man or Woman; it produceth a care, but somewhat unstable.
Amongst Plants, Thyme, Amber-grise, Musk, Coriander, and all sweet perfumes. All delicious Animals of a strong love, as Dogs, Conies, stinking Sheep, and Goats, which couples after the seventh day of his being brought forth. The Eagle is prone to Venery, for after she hath been trod thirteen times a day, if the Male call her, she runs to him again. And lustfull Pilchards.
To Venus, flourishing gardens, garnished beds, stews, the seashore, baths, and all places belonging to women; also a Study where Books are or where husbandry occurs such as a Dairy-house and Hay-ricks.

The T-O map is one I developed to mark the passing of the Crescent Isles into the Kingdom of Lochac, based on the very early T-O maps which divided the world into the three land masses of Europe, Asia and Africa.

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The text was typeset using the JSL Ancient fonts, as developed by Jeff Lee based on the transitional typefaces used by English printers Edward Jones and J. Redmayne in the latter part of the 1600s.While technically outside the SCA period, Lee's fonts are very close in style to period typefaces used by printers throughout Europe, and the book uses a typical mix of italic and roman faces, as well as large caps. Chapbooks traditionally used woodcuts from a variety of sources; mine come primarily from The Boke of Good Cookery collection, as well as the Renaissance Astrology Website.

The title-page follows standard conventions of the time, though these were relatively late to develop, not being fully established until the 16th century according to Steinberg (pg 68). Their layout is very characteristic, and a number of excellent late-period examples are accessible via the Shakespeare's Sonnets Website. The general layout is based on material I pored over at the Gutenberg Museum of Print in Mainz, as well as examples available online. The main characteristics are the mix of Roman and italic fonts, the decreasing size of the font as you move down the page and the information on the printer and seller at the bottom.

This version was been sewn with a pamphlet stitch, another period binding technique. The paper used was laid, cotton-based, 100gsm cream Conqueror, A4 folded to produce a quarto of four pages (16 in total). It is a reasonable approximation of the type of paper in common use for printing in later period, described by Middleton as of linen or cotton rag content with a yellowish tint and well sized (pg 3).

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Rowany Festival Chapbook AS40: The Scurrilous Rag

The Scurrilous Rag is the second edition of a Festival chapbook, having picked up its new name as a result of repeated references to last year's inaugural Rowany Festival Chapbook. It is based on an Elizbethan model regarding contents, layout and production, and is designed to bring a sense of both topical events and period material to the masses in an easily readable and entertaining format. It follows the usual conventions of chapbooks outlined above, with regard to typesetting and production.

The major difference in this edition was the increase in Festival/SCA-related material, reflecting the strong involvement of Southron Gaard in the Festival war preparations and greater familiarity with Lochac in general. Most of the material I produced quotes directly from or is adapted from a range of period sources (see the reference box for source information).

The letter to His Majesty which opens the chapbook is based on the (spectacularly unsuccessful) letter of Simon de Montfort and Gilbert St Clare to Henry III in 1265, as recorded by the monk Matthew of Westminster. It reflects the desire expressed by His Majesty Stephen that the Crescent Isles groups unite to take on one of the continental baronies at Festival, wherein Arnfinr, Baron of Ynys Fawr kindly agreed to participate.

To the most excellent lord ÆDWARD, by right of arms, King of Lochac, &c. The barons of Lochac insular oriens, along with certain others of the continental lands, Your Faithful Subjects, wishing to observe their oaths and the fidelity due to the Crown, tender their Lawful Service with all due Respect and Honour.
As it is plain from much experience that one amongst Your barons has made divers declarations concerning the dispositions of our lands to an Over-Weening Ambition, intending all the mischief that they can do, not only to us, but to Your whole Kingdom, we wish Your Majesty to know that we intend to preserve the peacefulness of the realm and safety of Your many subjects with all our might, as the fidelity which we owe to You demands, proposing to overthrow, to the utmost of our power, all those who are not our enemies but Yours too, and the foes of the whole of Your Kingdom; if any other statement is made to You respecting these matters, do not believe it; for we shall always be found Your Faithful Subjects.
And we, Bartholomew and katherine, Baron and Baroness of Southron Gaard, Inigo and Cecilia, Baron and Baroness of Ildhafn, at the request of the rest, have, for us and for them too who have declared for Our Cause, sworn to take the field at Festival to prevail against those who would remove our ancient rights.
And we would ask that all those who support or will grant succour to our Just Cause would undertake to mark themselves on the Field of War at Festival with a red band or ribbon or torse, or such other red marking as leaves no doubt in the minds of the beholder, of their accession to our part in the Pending Conflict, lending Dismay and Confusion to the Thin and Benighted Ranks of those who would stand against us.

The scutage information comes from the 1180 Dialogue of the Exchequer. The material on how to deal with bad behaviour while at sea comes from instructions penned in 1189 by Richard I, Concerning Crusaders Who Were to Go by Sea. The J'accuse Neiman title above an empty frame, while referencing an anachronistic quote, does actually reflect a Middle Ages emblematic practice of blaming bad things on Mr Nobody, in much the same manner as small children still do (Jones, pg84).

The description of His Majesty is based on contemporary descriptions of a number of rulers, including those by Giovanni Michiele, the Venetian Ambassador, regarding Mary I, and material from Einhard's Life of Charlemagne (Book III), with some personalised additions. The woodcut comes from the Renaissance Astrology Website; the Sun, naturally, was chosen as symbolic of the King, rather than for any implied actual resemblance….

This woodcut depicts King Ædward Stædfast in his glory, but it is more usual that next his skin he wear a linen shirt and linen breeches, and above these a woollen garment he calls a man-dress, which covers him to mid-thigh. Hose covers his lower limbs, and shoes his feet, and he protects his shoulders and chest in winter by a cote of thick English wool, and his head in summer by a straw hat.
HIS MAJESTY is temperate in eating, and particularly so in drinking, for he abominates drunkenness in anybody, much more in himself and those of his household; but he can not easily abstain from food, and often complains that fasts injure his health. In summer after his midday meal, he eats some fruit, drains a single cup, puts off his clothes and shoes, just as he does for the night, and rests for two or three hours.
HIS MAJESTY is of middling stature, without personal defect in his limbs, nor is any part of his body deformed. His face is well formed, as shown by his features and his portraits. He is considered not merely tolerably handsome, but of a look far exceeding mediocrity. With the exception of some wrinkles, caused more by anxieties than by age, which makes him appear some years older, his aspect is very grave whilst upon the throne. When at his leisure, he is often merry and most voluble, words falling from his mouth like unto the water from a river mouth, whereof he is described with some affection by his people who like it well.
HIS MAJESTY will try his hand at writing and keeps tablets under his pillow, that at leisure hours he might accustom his hand to form letters and figures; however, as he did not begin his efforts in due season, but late in life, he has met with ill success. His counting, natheless, is superior to that of most men.
The King does not suffer his high purpose and steadfastness - firm alike in good and evil fortune - to be wearied by any fickleness, or to be turned from any task that he has undertaken. In thus wise has he taken the field against his foes and been victorius. Not only is he brave and valiant, but also courageous and resolute that neither in adversity nor peril does he ever commit any act of pusillanimity, maintaining always a wonderful grandeur, knowing what becomes the dignity of a sovereign; so that it cannot be denied that he shows himself to have been born of truly royal lineage.

The geographical report is based on material from the 14th and 15th books of De Proprietatibus Rerum by Bartholomew Anglicus, a collection of all kinds of information put together in the 1240s. The translation used was taken from Steele's Medieval Lore (1893). The geographical information is closely based on the various descriptions of the lands of England and Ireland (Ynys Fawr), Ethiopia and Egypt (continental Lochac), and France (Lochac insular oriens), with original supplementary material added to suit Festival politicking.

Of the lands of Lochac,consisting of the Vastness of the continental lands,and the Lushness of the islands to the east,and the Dampnesse of the smaller isle.
Lochac is found to be of divers parts, Lochac continental, wherein the land is red and dusty and full of Venymous Fauna; and Lochac insular which has three parts. Of the latter, the northernmost island holds within it the Barony of Ildhafn, wherein are found mighty warriors and sailors; the Shire of Darton ripe with merchants and Commerce; and the vast extent of the Crown Lands watched over by the Household of the Windy Plains.
The southernmost island is held by the Barony of Southron Gaard, where once came peoples from the kingdoms across the seas to found a tower bastion at the edge of the world in ages past. There do rise purple mountains’ majesty above the fruited plains.
And these islands to the east of continental Lochac were once termed the Southern Reaches in days gone by, and hight sometimes the Crescent Isles in memory of their former lords, and sometimes have the name of Gottmark, for truly the lands are blessed by God. For the peoples may go about bare of foot for therein lies nothing that bites or stings, unlike within the continental lands. In those blessed isles there be, namely, many sheep with good wool, there be many harts and other wild beasts; there be few wolves or none, therefore there be many sheep, and such may be securely left without ward, in pasture and in fields. It is a land full of mirth and of game and sheep.
Though this province be little in space, yet it is wealthful of many special things and good. For this land is plenteous and full of pasture, of cattle and sheep, and of beasts, royal and rich of the best towns, havens of the sea, and of famous rivers. The men thereof be seemly and fair of body and strong, and the ladies are vertuous and graceful and fair of form, and between them they get many obedient children. And they be rich of all manner of merchandises and chaffer, and mild of will, and fair of speech, and keen in song and dance, strong of bearing, honest of clothing, peaceable to their own neighbours, true and trusty to strangers, passing witty in craft.
To the west of these Great Isles lies the small island land of Ynys Fawr, beclipped all about by the sea, and departed from the roundness of the world. Therein are many rivers and streams and raging torrents, for it rains strongly in these parts so that all men and beasts remain damp for the better part of a year, leading to Much Colic and Spleen. Solinus says the inhabitants thereof be fierce, and lead an unhuman life. The people there use to harbour no guests, they be warriors, and drink men’s blood that they slay, and wash first their faces therewith. The men here be singularly formed like unto the Faery folk which speaks much of Ill-Breeding, making them cruel of heart, fierce of cheer, angry of speech, and sharp. Nathless they be free hearted, and fair of speech and goodly to their own nation, namely those men that dwell in the marshes, bogs, fens and mountains tha bedight the land.
Lochac continental has a different humour, for there the sun is nigh to men, and roasteth and toasteth them. And so the colour of men showeth the strength of the star, for there is continual heat, such that they be brown or redde. Some oft curse the sun bitterly in his rising and downgoing, and they behold the sun and curse him always: for his heat grieveth them full sore. All that is under the south pole about the west is full of sand, and about the middle full of gravel and dust, and in the east side wilderness, and it is closed in the south and north with ocean.
Also therein be many wild beasts and horrible adders and serpents, and also spiders and marzipole moles, and the giant carniferous duckke and the vicious drop-bearre of many legends, and cockatrices and great dragons, griffins and fearsome swans. The latter twain are regarded with much respect, being the sigils of the lands of Politarchopolis and Aneala whose populace is much diminished by the appetite of said beasts. In this land are found many baronies with divers names. That of Rowany recalls tales of a time when once green trees bore red fruits, though these are not seen upon the land itself due to great heat and Fyre. Others celebrate the torrents and wild weather that is found in some parts, going by the names of Riverhaven and St Florian de la Rivere and Stormhold and such ilk.
And, as it is said, some of the peoples till the earth, and some use chivalry, and some use merchandise; some rule and govern the kingdom; and some be about the kings, and some be Justices and doomsmen, some give them principally to learning of wit and of wisdom; and others do not.

The Riverhaven Shanty is a trope I wrote as a gift for the kind hospitality of Mistress Glynhyvar and Sir Agro Agwesi at Festival last. Like many published broadsides, it doesn't actually state what the well-known (non-period) song is.

Almanac information this year did not include predictions of the weather and prognostications, in the interests of having more SCA/Festival-specific material, with updating of the Common Notes and appropriate saints selected from the calendar of saints days provided by the Catholic Forum.

The Festival horoscope was calculated for the general opening time using the Astrolabe online chart generation service, but adapted for the usual period square format, rather than the more modern circular version. The placement of the house divisions and planetary positions was based on an astrological chart attributed to Galileo Galilei (Kollerstrom). The horoscope text has drawn on material primarily from William Lilly's Christian Astrology (1647) and William Ramesey's Astrologia Restaurata (1653). Although post-period, much of their writing reflected earlier astrological traditions from the Arabic and, on occasion, Greek sources. The Barony-House correspondences were based on heraldic colours, devices and other aspects which seemed to provide a suitable match for the different Baronies.

Here are some extracts from the horoscope:

Sun 22 Degrees Aries.
One under this Signe has a kind of itching desire to Rule and Sway where he comes: Prudent, and of incomparable Judgment; of great Majesty and Statelinesse, Industrious to acquire Honour and a large Patrimony, yet as willingly departing therewith again. The Sun gives a longing for power and government, hankering after wealth and management of worldly affairs, and reproving evil-doers. A Body strong and well composed, not so beautifull as lovely, full of health, their hair yellowish, and thereofre quickly bald, much Hair on their Beard, and usually an high ruddy Complexion, and their bodies fleshy.The Sun signifieth Kings, Princes, Counts, Dukes, Earles, Barons, Lieutenants, Gentlemen, Courtiers, Stewards, yea, though a petty Constable, where no better, or greater Officer is. Those under this star are prone to Pimples in the Face, Palpitation or Trembling, or any Diseases of the Brain or Heart. Of Colours he ruleth the Yellow, the colour of Gold, the Scarlet or the cleer Red. Amongst Animals, those are Solary which are magnanimous, couragious, ambitious of victory, and renown: as the Lyon, King of beasts, the Crocodile, the spotted Wolf.Also the beast called Baboon is Solary, which in time of Equinoctium pisseth twelve times every hour.
The Sign of YNYS FAWR
Mars 29 Degrees Gemini.
In feats of Warre and Courage invincible, scourning any should exceed him, subject to no Reason, Bold, Confident, Immoveable, Contentious, challenging all Honour to themselves, Hazarding himself to all Perils, willingly will obey no body; nor submit to any, a large reporter of his own Acts. Mars in the First House speaks of War. Generally Martialuts have a decent tallness of the body, their Bodies strong, and their Bones big, rather leane then fat; their Complexion of a brown, ruddy colour, or flaxen, and many times crisping or curling, sharp hazle Eyes, and they piercing, a bold confident countence, and the man active and fearlesse. They are prone to the Plague and all Plague-sores, Burnings, Ring-wormes, Blisters, Phrensies, mad sudden distempers in the Head, Fistulaes, and such other Diseases as arise by abundance of too much Choller, Anger or PassionTo Mars, fiery and bloody places, furnaces, shambles, places of execution and places where there have been great battles fought.

The Combat of the Thirty poem consists of the first and last stanzas of a translation from a 14th-Century Breton lay, in reference to the Festival challenge laid by Duke Cornelius. It is to be hoped it will encourage people to seek out the full poem. Davanzati's discourse on coins was a spoken one, presented in 1588. The mix of filler material at the end of the chapbook cites various authors, primarily Elizabethan, regarding conduct, clothing and food. It was great to have extra advertisements to sprinkle through the book for various Festival merchants, as that helped break up the text and provide visual interest in a period fashion.

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