Monday, September 15, 2008

Items of Note

Event - Medieval Festival
Manhattan’s Fort Tryon Park, NY
September 28, 2008

Manhattan’s Fort Tryon Park is transformed into a medieval market town decorated with bright banners, processional flags and costumed performers and guests. Visitors are greeted by authentic medieval music, dance and magic as well as jugglers and jesters. The afternoon is concluded with a thrilling joust between four knights on horseback. Costumed vendors will be on hand to demonstrate and sell a wide variety of medieval crafts as well as food and drink. For more information call (212) 795-1600.

Event - Hearth Night (Regia Anglorum)
Danville, Illinois USA
11-12 October, 2008

Micel Folcland, Inc., the Wisconsin-Indiana-Illinois branch of Regia Anglorum, will be holding Hearth Night at Forest Glen Preserve on 11-12 October. Forest Glen is near Danville, Illinois, and we will again have use of the log cabin. There will be plenty of room to sleep in the cabin or to camp beside it (period tents are not required). We have access to the Gannett Center for restrooms, showers, refrigeration and to sleep if the cabin gets too cold.

The event is free, and no costume is required for attendance. Activities will include arrow-making, textiles, combat and cooking, among others. Anyone interested in the serious reenacting of British culture from 950 to 1066 ce is invited. Nonmembers may attend up to two MF events--shows or hearth nights--without joining. People may
start showing up on Friday after noon.

Taste: The Story of Britain Through Its Cooking
Kate Colquhoun
Bloomsbury USA (October 30, 2007)
ISBN: 1596914106

"Colquhoun comes into her own when the written record starts to include recipes. The spices that disappeared from the British diet when the Romans left returned with the Crusaders - and were used because of their flavour, not (in the long-discredited shibboleth) to disguise tainted meat. She says: 'If so much about the European Middle Ages seems bewilderingly remote, contemporary Moroccan food, robust and subtle by degrees, broadly unchanged for centuries, offers a hint of our own culinary past.

"The most fascinating aspect of the first half of her book, though, is to do with religion and fish. Christianity brought with it fast days and their number grew and grew - all of Advent and Lent, Fridays (the Crucifixion), Wednesdays (Judas's payday), Saturdays (Sabbath Eve) - not so irrational for an island people, but with only salt to preserve fish, drearily boring. In 1541 Henry VIII allowed eggs and dairy produce on fast days and cut the number of them by three-quarters. By the time of Bloody Mary the Friday fast had to be reinstated to protect the fishing industry."

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