Posted in December 2014

Punishing a Corpse

This is more from The rise & fall of the house if Medici: Following the murder of Giuliano & attempt on his brother Lorenzo, DW Medici: “Jacopo de’Pazzi, so overcome by despair at the failure if the plot that he boxed his own ears and threw himself on the floor in despair and rage, managed … Continue reading

Rome, Sink of Iniquity

This is from Christopher Hubert’s The Rise and Fall of the House of Medici: “There were reckoned to be almost 7,000 prostitutes in a population of less than 50,000, most of them working in brothels licenced by the papal authorities and many of them  suffering from syphilis, ‘a kind of illness very common among priests’, … Continue reading

Opposition To Henry

I was surprised at the apparent lack of opposition to the religious reforms in England, but opposing the king was treason, so few dared speak out. There were many clerics who argued in favour of traditional religion, some churches refused to take down shrines or put them back after hiding them. Pilgrimages continued in some … Continue reading

Mannes Gere

Sir Thomas More wrote against pilgrimage sites, noting the shrine of St Valley in Picardy, specialising in genital disorders, impotence, & infertility, where “all theyr offrynges, that hinge about the walles, none other thyne but manned here and women’s here made in wax. “

Defending Henry

I have long held that Henry VIII is the most important character in English history, so reading about how the Reformation happened, how the need for an heir plunged the country into such chaos is really intriguing. I got chatting to an alcoholic ex Jesuit priest to pick his brains as to how modern Catholics … Continue reading

Uplandyshe Processions and Gangynges About

I love old English, and this complaint by Richard Taverner, an evangelical client of Cromwell, about the processions of Rogation tide is brilliant. He called them “these uplandyshe processions and gangynges about, which be spent in ryotyng and in belychere” during which “the banners and badges of the cross be so unreerently handled and abused … Continue reading

St Erasmus

Henry Walter was badly injured with abdominal wounds in a sea battle with Richard III. His wounds smelt so bad he was put in  boat by his mates, where HW was in immense pain, praying for help. Henry VI though not a saint, appeared, then St Erasmus who has been tortured by having his entrails … Continue reading

The Other Henry

The most famous king Henry was the one who turned England from Roman Christianity but the sixth Henry was known for his humility goodness and probably would have become a saint if not for the other one. He dressed in farmers boots, wearing a gown & rolled hood of a slightly rundown urban worthy. Up … Continue reading

Everything Tree

Spotted this in my local park, someone kindly put up tinsel & baubles, but what’s the dog collar doing? Die the dog spontaneously combust, or run so .much it became too small for the collar?