Monthly Archives: October 2017

Master Robert Bedingfield’s Report on the Great Muster of Gardiner’s Company of the London Trayned Bandes the fourteenth day of October 1597

Master Bedingfield’s watching

By Order of Captain Gardiner, a Very Great Muster of the Company was held the week before St. Luke’s at the Cat’s Perch Inn, wherein the Company did receive good service and drink.

Mostly done

The Cat’s Perch having been stolen some years before is (still) in a rebuilding year and has recently completed for the most part a Very Great Kitchen, missing only a roof, door, shutters, a proper dresser, shelving, an oven, a brazier, interior walls and floor befitting it.

An abundance of very satisfying and wholesome meat was served, as well as the Cat’s Perch’s well-famous Incredibly Strong Ale, and was admired and consumed in quantities large by the Company.

 

FIRE! Fire, I say!

Hello, My name is Olivia. Serve your own damn self

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The cooks did prepare our meals upon an open hearth and expressed satisfaction with the kitchens accommodations.

Butter was churned,

Makin’ butter while the sun shines

The Company fed well,

I know not this “chipotle”

and all had a Very Fulsome and Satisfying Dinner.

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Drill was the Order of the Day (see what I doth there), with the Pike making a Very Ardent,            if Unskilled show of its prowess, to the Delight of Fanny, the Innkeep.

No, we’re not doing Charge to Horse

Later in the Day, the Pike did hone their skill by trimming the shrubbery.

A lovely hedge

The Company’s Shotte was also Very Well Accounted in practice.

Give…FIRE! Fire, I say!

BANG! Bang, I say!

The practice of Sword was not neglected and the Company acquitted itself in its use Very Respectfully.

The pointy end go in…Oowww!

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There was after the Dinner a competition of a Popinjay Shoot, sponsored by Capt. Gardiner and overseen by Master Bedingfield, who had previously engaged with the Innkeep to procure a Popinjay for this purpose.

When the commissioned Popinjay was determined to have been kept too close to the kitchen fires,

It has ceased to be! This is a dead Popinjay!

…a substitute was offered, with a Very Energetic negotiation as to price and the true nature of its Popinjay-ness being in dispute.

6 Shillings…no, pence! 6 pence! Wait…we’ll pay you!

At the end, a very fine Shoot was held

Volley fire

with Mistress Kate winning the Shoot by detaching the Popinjay from its hat.

De-hatted the fowl, she did

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After a fine Supper, the Company took its ease and a Very Well-earned rest.

So, when’s the gambling starting?

Bet I finish this before Zeke does his

In all a very fine Muster was had with the Company now Proudly to field a Very Formidable force of fine Young Gallants.

Like this fine, downy-cheeked lad

Timeline 1596-1597

*For all to enjoy, and use as conversation starters at Muster:

1596

A flush toilet is illustrated in an English pamphlet, The Metamorphosis of Ajax by John Harrington.

– The Swan Theater opens in Paris Gardens, Bankside.

– 1596 began a three year span of bad harvests that ended in 1598.

– Jan. 27 – Francis Drake dies.

– Feb. 14 – Archbishop  of Canterbury John Whitgift begins building his hospital and school at Croydon (completed in 1599).

– March 23 – Henry Unton, diplomat, dies.

April 9 – Siege of Calais, Spanish troops capture Calais.

– June 30-July 4 – – English troops commanded by Robert Essex sack Cadiz.

– July 23 Lord Hunsdon dies; Lord Cobham appointed Lord Chamberlain.

October 18 – “Second Armada”, a Spanish fleet sent to attack England in revenge to the raid on Cadiz, is wrecked in storms near Cape Finisterre, Spain.

– November – 34 residents of Blackfriars sign a petition asking the Privy Council to stop Burbage’s rebuilt Blackfriar’s theater from opening.

– November 21 – Bartholomew Steer attempts to launch a rebellion on Enslow Hill in Oxfordshire.

 Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge is founded (classes begin in 1598).

 

1597

– The Vagabonds Act 1597 in Parliament (39 Eliz. c. 4) introduces penal transportation as a punishment for the first time.

– Ben Jonson is arrested for staging The Isle of Dogs at the Swan Theater.

– Feb. 2 – James Burbage dies.

– (early) – First Quarto editions of Richard III, Richard II, and Romeo and Juliet published.

– March – Lord Cobham dies.

– probable first performance of Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice.

April 23 – Probable first performance of Shakespeare ‘s The Merry Wives of Windsor.

Conversation subjects for Muster (Humor)

Presenting to you today, selected excerpts from the newest edition of the pre-eminent 16th century bird-watcher’s manual that describes many of the birds to be found in Surrey, home of the Cat’s Perch Inn!  (I am told that all those within the Bandes have a keen eye for the birds.)

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Part III – Sparrows

Known to alle, the most common sparrowe, passer domesticus.

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Part V – Robins

The common Redbreasted Robin, erithacus rubecula (ordinarily seen in the company of other winged creatures).

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Part VII – Owles and divers other raptors

 

The Breasted Owle, athene boobicans, is observed only at night, due to its solitary and wandering nature.  Usually seen in pairs.

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Part IX – Flightless Birds

Rarely seen, and oft misunderstood, England’s only flightless bird, the Prickly Warbler, spinictus philosophicus.

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Part XIV – Somewhat Naked Birds

The fortunately elusive Bird-Man of Putney.  Seen late at night, singing off-key. Pictured: We think it might be a mating display, we’re not sure.

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Part XXIV – Inordinately Large Birds

The Common Sussex Widgeon, calamitus palumbus. Often seen sitting below trees.  Not flightless, it just needs a boarding pass.

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Part CXXXIX – The Popinjay

 

Seen here without its customary head and neck plumage.

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Thank you all, the book is not available for sale at this time.

 

Popinjay Shoot for 2017 Muster

We will have a Popinjay shoot at October Muster in less than a week!

The popinjay was a sport, and a way for militias to practice shooting.  A beautiful image of such a shoot is in the watercolour album of a Dutch artist named Adriaen van de Venne:

(source: Adriaen van de Venne’s Album, Martin Royalton-Kisch, British Museum, 1988)

This picture shows three men shooting with guns at the popinjay.  The prize went to the man who shot the last of the popinjay off the pole, using target guns (doelroeren).  The bird is made of wood, and the man who shot the last piece off was declared “king”.

We will not be using guns, but boffer arrows, so that no-one gets hurt, either by ammunition gone astray, or flaming wooden bird bits falling to the ground.

Master Robert Bedingfield has declared for this muster that all who wish to shoot with the bow shall demonstrate their skill by hitting the popinjay.  There will be a prize of a quarter angel for the first person to shoot our popinjay hard enough to make it spin, and a couple of other small prizes to those with the most interesting hits upon the bird.