Men Who Glare at Stoats

My deere readeres,

Yf ther ys oon thyng Ich kan counte upon, yt is that straunge and distractinge events shal bifall whenevir Ich plan to wryte on my blog. For a loong tyme, Ich was so soore y-bugged by the interrupcioun of my postinge by Quanje West that Ich thoughte nat to blog ayein.

Aftir sum soul-searchinge, Ich decyded to blog ayein, and was planning wyth muchel joie a seryes of poostes on my attemptes at going through the entyre Forme of Currye and cooking ech recepye in order. And yet, sooner than ye koude saye "grounde beenes," a newe mattir grabbed me by myn litel woolen hatte and hath taken up al my tyme. At a tavern yn Londoun on Halloween night whan Ich was drinkinge wyth Tommy Vske and Dr. Hwaet, Ich did meete a Kentishman who had lived yn Bruges and recentyle retourned, a chap by the name of Caxton.

Thys Caxton felawe hath a printinge presse, the which ys a magical machine that depriveth scryveners of their livelihood. Good Will Caxton hath toold me that yf Ich get a draft together, he may paraventure make a printinge of my blogge. So, wyth fingres deeply and constantly y-crossed, Ich have been at werke on the manuscript, revysyng and adding to the most notable poostes of yore to produce a newe and definitif versioun, wyth muchel newe mateere within yt. Ich do hope that ye gentil rederes mighte be wel plesed wyth swich a book -- that ys, if thinges do ende up wel and Caxton doth actually ende up printinge yt. Yet sikerly, Ich have learned that lyf can be unpredictable, given that whan Ich was a young boy almoost half of the populacioun of Engelond was destroyed by the Black Deeth.

Thogh drowning in ink and wel-nigh swooning wyth copying of oold wordes, Ich do fynde sum tyme for fun and amusement. Just a few dayes agoon, Ich and Philippa watched the fyne filme of Men Who Glare at Stoats, the which is a trewe storye of the divers fashions in which oure realme hath usid the secrets of magique and necromancie to arme ourselves in the longe werre ayeinst Fraunce. Thes mattirs are so importaunt and unusual that Ich thoghte Ich wolde share sum of them heere wyth yow.

Gentils and churls, scarcely will ye believe the thinges that this litel filme speketh of! Ich do but liste a fewe:

--Kyng Edward III creatid a secret inner circle of the Ordre of the Garter, for knightes who have skills in magique, wyth the motto: "Yoga soit qui mal y pense."

--This order is run by a mysterious figure known only as Le Vieux Pelerin.

--By entering a deep trance, these knightes of the Privy Order of the Garter can move their imaginacioun yn to eny place on the globe of the erthe, and thus they kan see the movements of the Frensshe, and eek, if they look harde ynogh, they kan see the verye vowels of the Englisshe tonge shiftinge.

--A syde-project of the Privy Garter ys able to make the Frensshe soldiers falle yn to wepyng and crying and lamentynge of their sinnes, and thus maketh them nat fit for deedes of armes. Thys syde project is called Knightyle Emocional Manipulacioun of Powers of the Enemye, or K.E.M.P.E.

--Wyth the mocioun of the mynde and the eyes aloon, these knightes kan stoppe the beatinge herte of an adult stoat at a range of XX feet.

--Also wyth the mocioun of the mynde and the eyes aloon, these knightes kan give the scalle under the long lokkes of eny scrybe that miscopieth a text. (Scrape that, Punkhurst!)

--These knightes have so mastered their soules and their bodyes that they kan performe all the werkes of chivalrie at once. Indeed, they kan simultaneouslie playe chesse, debate heraldic devyces, write a roundelay, exploit peasant labour, carole and daunse, jouste in a tourney, and besiege a Frensshe toune.

--These knightes of the Privy Order of the Garter have divyded themselves yn to IV "houses" in which they trayne and recruit squires. The houses aren ycleped Hippogryiffin d'Argent, Serpentyne, Hurlyburle, and Rooktalon.

--These knightes have a magical garter that determineth which squire shal goon to which hous. Yt ys called the Garter Sortant and it hath a randye sense of humour.

--Henry Bolingbroke did trye to joyne these knights of the Privy Garter, and yet he was deemed too daungerous. Yt is rumoured that he hath joyned a splintre order known only as the Sithen, the which who practise the derke syde of chivalrie (the which ys indistinguishable from the light syde).

Swich fascinatinge secretes, my frendes. Whan next Ich have sum tyme away from my labour of writinge, Ich hope to see Feudalism: A Love Story.

17 comment "Men Who Glare at Stoats"

  1. Found you via a link by Tim Worstall

    Excellent stuff


  2. I rejoyce that thysse blogge hastou nat forleten. Muchel delyte founde I in the tale of the Privy Ordre of the Garter eek. Upon a tyme hadde ich bethoughte me to joyne thys fayre felweshipe, but thise knyghtes han me with despit ytreted, all for that I a womman was. "Sexiste pigges," cryde I, but al for noght. Thei wolde nat budgge. And so founde I the Oultre Secree Privy Ordre of the Garter. We are accepttynge applicaciouns.
    Morgana leFaye

  3. Hastow seen, O maistre, in thyn houre of ese bytween thy michel laboures, that a new poppet is y-made, or scholde Ich say twain, yclept Bel Barbie ond Eduardus Ken, and, for that he been vampyr, his skin shineth and glistereth wyth littel sparklie sparkels?

    Thus, shouldstow finden in days to come that thou hast thy wife agayne offended, such a gift thou mightst her offre--yet it wold sette thee back mony a groat, for indeed the chapmen of Mattele's compagnie yeve them nat awaie.


  4. Chaucer, tyke care and moleste not ye sythen! Bewayre Darthe Gower!

  5. God mægister Chaucer,

    Soðlic, þu writest on a manere ful niwe-gefangled! Wel mæg ic arædan þæt þu hast leornode of þa niwe fascion Frencisc. Fela hippe, syre, for soð.

    Þysse lar þæra cnihta þe lociaþ on stoatas me amaseþ ful swyðe. Me þinceþ swyce wiccecræft wolde micel helpan on ure guðe mid þam Frysum.

    Wæs þu hal,

    Hygelac, cyning Geata

  6. Yoewr bloge hast beene giv'n a most glouryous awarde four skill't writtng!

  7. Chaucer, magister meus,

    Haf ye herd speke of ye newe filme of sparkelie vampyres? Ys it onie goode?

  8. Nat onlie am i much delyted yn the goodlie prospect of a volume of yr wrytings, but "Feudalism: a Love Story" seemeth to bee a romantick comodie ich wold rejoyce in (for a change.)

    Yf that Mar. were secretely a KEMPE agent agayn the Frensshe, it wold explayn much that seemeth deep mystery. Gret ys yr wysdom, maistre Chaucer!

  9. Maister Chaucer,
    Yowre fannes awayte yowre nexte postynge. I hope yow ar nat fallen ayein under the spelle of thise sparklie vampyres and loup-garoux (that is to sayen, thise hunkes that chaunge by nighte into wolves). I have herde telle that the newe film of sparklie vampyres has sommme myghtie sorcerie that makes wommen and somme menne eek to gette alle swouny and faynte with delyte. Plese lette me to knowe if yow nede helpe for to counter-acte thise spelles. I dar wel make avaunt that nevere failled I of my magikke as yit.
    La Vostre,
    Morgana LF

  10. This is outrageous. Please tell me we won't be waiting another decade for you to post... :-(

  11. Blakke Deeth is mickel anachronism, methinks, forthat itte hight 'fevreblau' in thatte tyme. Ich commende ye thisse gud booke: Dooms Day Book bye thatte gud dame, Connie Willis, whyche booke methinks thou wudst lyke.

    Ich knowe nought offe thyne Frensshe du hadst on thisse payge, Maister Chaucer, iffe thu me perdonne...

    God ye gud den,

  12. Maister Chaucyre, Ich wishe yew and yors a happie, healthie, MMX.

  13. When shall we hear more of thee, Maistre Chaucer?

  14. God ye a good den, my maistre. Ich hav but of late myn een y-clapt on this postinge of yowers, yet ich hav heered tel al redie of the DVD ("Deus videt?) of the Privy Ordre's campaynes that cometh forth. Ich hav no grete desir there-to, for ich heer that ther is michel revisioning in it. Par exempel, having it in minde to make My Lord Hans of Solaut apere more saintlie and chivalric, Sir Georg Lukes hath commanded his minstrels to syng that Gridaux did shote first.

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