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December 25, 2008

I find your lack of faith disturbing
Posted by Teresa at 09:27 AM *

It’s a silly but irresistible practical joke: a solemn procession of the clergy of the Lutheran Church of Iceland, with an additional participant quietly joining the end of the queue. After that, all it took was the right soundtrack.

Comments on I find your lack of faith disturbing:
#1 ::: Kelly McCullough ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 10:02 AM:

That's brilliant. Simple and elegant.

#2 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 10:03 AM:

And I knew what I was going to be seeing from your clues and the post title!

I was actually more amused by the procession -- I had no idea that their vestments had retained the style of the church's founding days. They looked to me like the funeral procession in Orlando.

#3 ::: Spherical Time ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 11:03 AM:

Nice . . . hahaha.

He just happened to have the costume handy, I guess?

#4 ::: Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 11:45 AM:

Oh, my. And Kelly used up all the adjectives I want.

The ultimate fusion of Church and State.

#5 ::: Per Chr. J. ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 11:47 AM:

The Church of Norway used to dress that way as well (as part of the common heritage of Denmark-Norway), but decided in 1980 to discontinue the use, which meant that the black robes and special collars were phased out gradually, as ministers retired. The reasons cited were some dissatisfaction with the old look among the younger clergy, as well as economic factors (difficulties getting these kinds of vestments made, not to mention that the collars need special equipment to clean and starch, or so I gather). Still, bit of a shame, really.

I also hope that the participating clergymen saw the incident as humour as well, and did not feel that it had ruined their procession.

#6 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 11:52 AM:

IIRC the special equipment to deal with those collars is called a "goffering iron."

#7 ::: JennR ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 11:58 AM:

Per Chr. J @ 5; based on the (sometimes stifled) smiles I saw on the faces of the clergy at the end of the line (as they made the turn in such a fashion that they could see the trailing figure), I think many of them did.

#8 ::: ADM ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 01:44 PM:

Eh, I don't have any clerics of choice, but I have to say, the medievalist in my loves clerical dress! And this makes it perfect :-)

#9 ::: Larry ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 01:57 PM:

That was pretty good. Some of those in the procession definitely were amused. Glad to see only their collars looked stuffy.

#10 ::: Doctor Science ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 02:37 PM:

That was no FAIL, that was WIN!

#11 ::: ulrika ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 02:42 PM:

Rikibeth-

It seems to me that the vestments of a number of the higher Christian churches retain elements of the medieval in their ceremonial garb, frozen in time like scholarly robes, British royal guard uniforms, and folk costume, to one degree or another. The ruffs are atypical, perhaps, but surely no more dated than miters, skullcaps, or floor length robes. Or do you find Catholic vestments funny also?

In a way it's a shame the Norwegian church gave up its collars. It always seems a shame to me when a market for quality hand work is lost. I always marvel at the quality (and quantity) of the cartridge pleating you get in scholars' robes, and continue to think that there is market potential for cross pollination of skills and products between the makers of ceremonial dress of all sorts and the really dedicated re-enactor class.

#12 ::: Madeleine Robins ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 03:03 PM:

Sometimes it's the little things that are the best. And I'm delighted at how amused some of the processors looked.

#13 ::: Madeleine Robins ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 03:03 PM:

Sometimes it's the little things that are the best. And I'm delighted at how amused some of the processors looked.

#14 ::: Mark ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 05:05 PM:

Ulrika, I interpreted rikibeth's 'amused' in the sense of entertained and pleased rather than finding it funny; please understand no offense was meant. (Having lived with her for 17 years, I recognize her childlike delight in preserved historical details, and assure you it is not without respect.)

#15 ::: Syd ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 05:10 PM:

Either I saw the same clip prior to the music being added, or I didn't realize the first time that my speakers were turned down.

That was AWESOME. :)

I was going to blather a bit re: the "ceremonial garb" idea, but it was coming out like so much gibberish, so I cut it. But I would venture that it served to draw the eye to the person/people one was supposed to be watching, and does so even more now that common clothing has changed so much. Plus, of course, the whole if-the-tradition-ain't-broke-don't-fix-it idea.

Oh, dear. I seem to have blathered anyway.

#16 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 05:39 PM:

I'm trying to imagine Darth Vader as a bishop.

#17 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 05:46 PM:

Ulrika, Mark's got it right. "Amused" should really have been read with a large dose of "squee!" (How else would I have known one needed a goffering iron to shape the ruffs?) I've been known to exclaim in delight over a catch-stitched lining in a vintage coat; ruffs are EVEN BETTER.

I am probably not the person you want to be sitting next to at a historically-costumed movie.

#18 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 05:55 PM:

Ulrika @11:
Or do you find Catholic vestments funny also?

Well, I find the word "capuch" funny. So did the Discalced Carmelite friar who taught it to me while wearing one.

It sounds like the noise a big boulder makes when dropped in a lake.

#19 ::: Epacris ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 06:12 PM:

Fragano, there's been at least one Warrior Pope (Bishop of Rome).

History probably reveals a population of pugilistic priests. Good to see they've mostly decided against the caped costumes.

#20 ::: Avram ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 06:47 PM:

Ulrika @11, miters are hilarious.

#21 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 06:57 PM:

On the contrary, Rikibeth, you are *exactly* the person I want to see a historically-costumed movie with.

#22 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 07:00 PM:

RikkiBeth, TexAnne, take me with you when you go.

#23 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 07:25 PM:

Teresa, you're geographically close enough that you could just name the movie (and we should take Genevieve Valentine with us, and maybe Susan too). TexAnne, you need to come visit!

#24 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 07:50 PM:

Epacris #19: Warrior bishops I can think of (including legendary ones like Turpin). But somehow, Darth Vader as a bishop doesn't quite work for me.

#25 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 08:19 PM:

I'll be at Worldcon and I have a Netflix subscription. BWAhahahaha!

#26 ::: Mark ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 08:42 PM:

Guys, guys, trust me, you don't want to see a costume drama with Rikibeth if anyone short of Sandy Powell is doing the costuming. Seriously. If the research and craftsmanship isn't exacting, she can be a right pillock. You've been warned.

#27 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 08:45 PM:

Mark, that's not a bug. That's the point.

#28 ::: elise ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 09:08 PM:

Vader as a Bishop? Collect the whole set!

#29 ::: elise ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 09:09 PM:

Vader as a Bishop? Collect the whole set!

#30 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 09:31 PM:

Texanne, seriously, I am but an egg compared to Genevieve Valentine. You should look at her LJ where she tears the costuming in "The Other Boleyn Girl" to shreds -- "Those dresses are twenty years out of date for the time period AND they're German! This is like wearing OVERALLS to a high fashion party!" And her diatribes against the costumers who leave off chemises... I stand in awe.

I don't know if finances will permit me getting to WorldCon, but if you're driving, I'd certainly be on the way to or from, for you.

#31 ::: Reileen van Kaile ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 09:38 PM:

Rikibeth #30:

Texanne, seriously, I am but an egg compared to Genevieve Valentine. You should look at her LJ where she tears the costuming in "The Other Boleyn Girl" to shreds -- "Those dresses are twenty years out of date for the time period AND they're German! This is like wearing OVERALLS to a high fashion party!" And her diatribes against the costumers who leave off chemises... I stand in awe.

This sounds fascinating. Dare I ask for a link?

#32 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 09:45 PM:

Reileen, here:

http://glvalentine.livejournal.com/46430.html

#33 ::: johnofjack ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 09:49 PM:

Epacris, there's also a Battle Pope (by the writer of _Walking Dead_).

#34 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 09:56 PM:

Rikibeth, I'm sure I'll be flying.

#35 ::: ADM ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 11:05 PM:

Damn. Makes me want to go to Worldcon even more!

#36 ::: Kayjayoh ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 11:36 PM:

It makes me even more excited that I *will* be going to Worldcon.

#37 ::: Paula Helm Murray ::: (view all by) ::: December 25, 2008, 11:49 PM:

Rikbeth, I'm with you. One of the things that can break an historical movie for me (and my partner Rohanna) is weird/outdated/etc. costuming.

On the other hand, Rohanna regaled me with the tale of a bunch of SCAdians going to the old Plaza theater to see Robin of Sherwood (also known as "Yo, Merry Dudes."

The theater was an ornate building that had been built during the 20s and the decor inside was really fabulous. The bathroom entrances on the basement floor were wide and not screened.

And one of the females noticed that the decor inside the Men's room was really superior to the Women's room. So they huddled just outside and started making comments like, "Well, would you look at that!". "Oh My Ghod!" and "Look, there is a Calon Cross in that frieze!" etc.

They apparently wierded out a lot of men just trying to use the can.

#38 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 12:05 AM:

Paula, I'd be awfully tempted to admire the men's room decor too! But I'd like to think I'd step aside if a gentleman wanted to USE the facilities.

#39 ::: C. Wingate ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 12:23 AM:

Darth Vader needed a ruff too. The costume seriously cries out for one.

Ironically, the most medieval Anglican vestments are actually innovations of a sort. As far as anyone knows, the first photograph of Anglican bishops in copes and miters was at the Fond du Lac "circus" in 1900 (the Russian bishop on the far right is St. Tikhon, later patriarch of Moscow). If you want to be archaic, you have to go for the hyper-Protestant stuff of the early reformation like Geneva bands (here's Fleming Rutledge in them: she gets extra points for being female and having a hyper-Anglican name). If you really want to max out you need a Canterbury cap, which you can see here sported by Cranmer. Surplice, tippet, bands, hood, and Cap gives you the Compleat Regalia for the passing Anglican academic-- just the thing to deliver the invocation at commencement. But you can't wear bands and a ruff together.

#40 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 12:45 AM:

C. Wingate - But you can't wear bands and a ruff together.

well, no! the "falling band" collar was what came into general fashion (not just clerical when it was new) after the ruff had gone Out. IIRC, Tilda Swinton's wearing one when she recites "When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes" in Orlando. The clerics just kept it after other secular fashions had supplanted it.

That was part of my squee over the clerical ruffs. "Oh, look, THEIR clerical dress got established THEN, earlier than England, of course, that makes perfect sense!"

This brings me great geek-joy.

#41 ::: debcha ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 01:37 AM:

As someone whose usual dress is a black t-shirt and jeans, I somewhat shamefacedly admit that I really love wearing my full-on academic regalia. The robe I have is this, on the person standing. It's custom-made, with hand-shirred sleeves, and just an insane level of detailing on the robe and on the hood. Unsurprisingly, it's by far the most expensive garment I own. But it's kind of neat that the techniques are a tangible link to its historical roots.

#42 ::: Faren Miller ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 09:26 AM:

Every winter, Emperor Horton (our Norwegian Forest Cat, mentioned a few days ago) produces a beautiful white ruff to embelish his "tuxedo" coat. Unlike most humans in period costume, he loves having his chin rubbed.

#43 ::: Sica ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 09:49 AM:

I'm Icelandic so the priest outfits seem perfectly normal to me.

Thinking it through now though, I realise that I've not seen the ruffled collars on any priests in UK or American movies/tv etc. so I should have guessed.

The clip is hilarious though.

#44 ::: Ledasmom ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 09:57 AM:

I can't think of anything much more fun than going to costume dramas with people who pick apart the costuming.
When I spent half-an-hour after the latest James Bond flick whingeing about the physics, it came to me that I may be too old for action movies. The whingeing, if you remove all the inappropriate words, boiled down to "I know it's James Bond but there - are - limits."

#45 ::: Debbie ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 10:53 AM:

Rikibeth @32, thank you for the link (and other comments as well). It made my whole morning.

There's a new film version of Thomas Mann's Die Buddenbrooks that was released yesterday. Pre-release, it was getting good reviews. Looks like there's room for costume geekery -- official website and trailer here. Only in German so far, but I'm sure there will be subtitles and dubbing soon.

#46 ::: guthrie ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 11:28 AM:

Epacris #19- "History probably reveals a population of pugilistic priests."

The oldest historical fencing manual in the world, 1.33, (so called because of the drawer in the Royal Armouries it was discovered in), shows a "sacerdos" (priest) instructing a "scholaris" (student) in the art of using a sword and buckler for self defence. It is highly stylised, yet practical, demonstrating many years, probably many decades of development. The priest has a tonsure, and the scholar a full head of hair covered by a hood.

It dates from somewhere around 1300, from central germany, somewhere around Gotha or wurtzburg.
The rest of the medieval period has a number of examples of monks getting involved in battles, usually with local townsfolk who are fed up with the monks opressing them and bothering their wives.

#47 ::: Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 03:05 PM:

I have a hat, much like the canturbury. I'm wearing now, actually. It's warm, light and lets me move it about to block the sun.

Mostly it doesn't even get odd looks (though the occaisional is to be expected, and at times I get questions).

#48 ::: Ted ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 07:52 PM:

Faren Miller @42: This is preicsely why a good cat are nearly always better than a pod of Icelandic Lutheran bishops--or Darth Vader, for that matter.

#49 ::: Rob Rusick ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 09:36 PM:

C. Wingate @39 Darth Vader needed a ruff too. The costume seriously cries out for one.

'The Master' had one, when he was re-introduced as a villain during the Peter Davidson era of Dr Who.

National Geographic did an article about the Spanish Armada, with a photo of a portrait of Philip of Spain; it was the very image of the Master.

Peter Davidson's Dr Who was more British than portrayals previous or hence; not surprising that his adversary was the arch enemy of England.

#50 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: December 26, 2008, 11:26 PM:

Fragano et al: in Copenhagen, the largest statue of Bishop Absalon (city ~founder) that I saw showed him swinging a battle axe.

#51 ::: Joel ::: (view all by) ::: December 27, 2008, 02:33 AM:

CHip @50: Well, he's not actually swinging it. Just wielding it a little bit. Maybe he was innocently collecting firewood when the sculptor happened by?

#52 ::: guthrie ::: (view all by) ::: December 27, 2008, 08:50 AM:

Yes, that old firewood collecting problem, then some bloke charges up to contest your firewood, a la Robert the Bruce at bannockburn. Poor old bob broke his favourite axe.

#53 ::: Spam Deleted ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 06:44 AM:

[Spam from 121.15.168.177]

#54 ::: Rob Rusick spots spam ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 07:22 AM:

@53: 'View All By' shows this post only. What do you suppose the nonsense at the beginning is?

#55 ::: debcha ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 10:27 AM:

Randomly-generated characters, in an attempt to differentiate the messages enough that spamfilters do not immediately identify them?

#56 ::: RP ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 10:47 AM:

Ah, now I'm regretting that I've rarely worn my academic regalia since getting my PhD. I was very excited to get it: the velvet cap, the lined hood, etc. But once I put it on, I realized that these were definitely designed for tall thin men. Being short and female meant I looked a little too much like Henry VIII sans beard. Maybe I just need to take it out and wear it at home in a mirrorless place....

#57 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 01:08 PM:

RP @6:

Or you could throw prudence to the wind, get a fake beard, and start chopping heads...

#58 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 01:10 PM:

abi @ 57 ...
Or you could throw prudence to the wind, get a fake beard, and start chopping heads...

One of my (now backburner) projects is making myself a nice curmudgeon's beard... I'm thinking something in the "ancient chinese secret" tradition, so long and narrow, rather than "father yule" bushy.

#59 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 01:36 PM:

I already have a beard, and am male. Can I go ahead and chop some heads off? True, I also am tall and thin, but if someone thought that casting Eric Bana as Henry was believable, why not me?

#60 ::: R.M. Koske ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 01:38 PM:

#58, xeger -

False beards seem to be an unexpectedly popular item on etsy. There are at least two ladies making them. I found this one out of felt, but I know I saw an article about another lady making them of yarn. (Can't find any that look like what I remember, unfortunately.)

I'm strongly tempted by the knitting pattern for the Dwarven Battle Bonnets*, which are helmets with an attached knitted beard, myself.

If RP is going to throw Prudence to the wind, may I suggest zhe choose a Prudence around two to four years old. They're not very heavy at that age, better for throwing, and they're more resilient in the landings. If you throw her to the wind in the direction of a large, soft bed, you may find yourself requested to do it "Again!" (If you don't use a large soft bed, you may find yourself never near Prudence again.)

*The name of that pattern is one that will not stick in my head, and defies my best guesses at searches. Helmet doesn't work, nor viking. I remember that they're named for the helmet part, not the beard, so I save the beard search for last, and it is the one that works. I have it theoretically saved, but every time I look for the pattern it requires more searching than it should. Darn it.

#61 ::: Graydon ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 02:35 PM:

Serge @59 --

Great Harry was, in his youth, highly athletic; I am not sure if it is claimed of him what was claimed of Henry V, that he ran down deer afoot, but it wouldn't surprise me. Then he blew out a knee and didn't change his eating habits, and you can see the transformation in his suits of armor, which the Tower collection still has.

Not, let me hasten to add, that there aren't monumental other problems with that series in terms of historical accuracy (and I say this having seen naught by the subway ads!), but the young Henry VIII as an athlete is not itself objectionable.

#62 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 02:48 PM:

Graydon 61... I stand corrected. I guess the image that sticks in my mind is of Charles Laughton. Come to think of it, Robert Shaw once played Henry VIII annd his physique was anything but Laughtonesque.

#63 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 03:08 PM:

My mental image of Henry VIII mostly comes from the Holbein portraits, but if I assign an actor to him, it's now Jonathan Rhys Meyers. Which confuses the body type a lot.

#64 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 04:19 PM:

Rikibeth... Didn't Ray Winstone play VIII a few years ago? He looked more like the image I'm used to, but his accent was as incongruous as Sean Bean's would have been. Hmm. Sean Bean as VIII...

#65 ::: Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 10:45 PM:

Who played Harry in Man for All Seasons?

#66 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: December 29, 2008, 11:05 PM:

Terry Karney @ 65... That was Robert Shaw.

"Thomas. I chose the right man for chancellor!"
"I should in fairness add that my taste in music is reputedly deplorable."
"Your taste in music is excellent. It exactly coincides with my own!"

#67 ::: RP ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2008, 10:54 AM:

Abi @57: Ah, but now you have put the idea of an axe in my head. Why chose a beard when you can wield a weapon? Since I am now in IT (thus lacking the occasions for regalia), co-workers are already scared of me so it is not a huge leap. It would also forestall the giggling at the velvet hat, etc.

#68 ::: Christopher Davis ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2008, 04:48 PM:

RP (#67): better the idea of an axe in your head than a real axe in your head. (Your phrasing was, shall we say, rather amusing at first glance.)

#69 ::: Epacris ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2008, 07:14 PM:

I use the examples of Orson Welles & Marlon Brando in youth & age to describe the change in Henry VII from golden youth playing summer tennis to much-married greedy grump.

Keith Michell in the 1970 BBC miniseries, The Six Wives of Henry VIII showed the change pretty well. I should see it again, Elizabeth R withstood recent rewatching.


#70 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2008, 08:31 PM:

I wonder if The Tudors will make that sexy bad boy up into the ugly greedy old schlumpf that Henry became...when the time comes?

#71 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2008, 08:38 PM:

Xopher, I have no idea. I gave up watching it because I pretty much wanted to knock all the characters' heads together, despite how pretty JRM and Henry Cavill looked with their shirts off. The fanservice wasn't enough to overcome the annoyance with the characters.

#72 ::: Epacris ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2008, 08:53 PM:

RM @61 & others interested in Dwarven Battle Bonnet knitting. An update at Wicked Woollens blog points out there's a problem in one pattern.

#73 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: December 30, 2008, 10:03 PM:

Rikibeth, that's one of those periods in history when anyone would want to kill everyone involved. In fact, it's a period in history where any superpowerful alien race would have wiped out our species out of pure disgust and considered it an act of mercy. But then, we're in one of those now, aren't we?

Greedy, selfish, venal King tosses aside his wife for a greedy, selfish gold-digger whom he later murders (excuse me, executes on a trumped-up charge, but let's call a spade a fucking shovel) as soon as he tires of her...and their daughter becomes the greatest monarch in the history of Britain.

Much as I'd like to travel in time and throttle Henry in his crib, I could not deprive the world of Elizabeth the Great. And not just because she made my namesake such a bigwig.

#74 ::: Earl Cooley III ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 12:45 AM:

debcha #55: Randomly-generated characters, in an attempt to differentiate the messages enough that spamfilters do not immediately identify them?

Nope, tracking codes.

#75 ::: R.M. Koske ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 07:05 AM:

#72, Epacris -

Thanks for the pointer. The errata is noted in the pattern notes at Ravelry, as well.

(That looks like it should be either "erratum is" or "errata are." Is there a preferred usage for this sort of thing? I mean, I doubt it is a single correction, so is it plural even if it is for one mistake? Hm.)

#76 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 09:47 AM:

Xopher @73:

Now wait just one minute here -- Anne Boleyn was no gold-digger! She came to Court and fell in love with the Duke of Northumberland's heir, Henry Percy. Cardinal Wolsey scotched the betrothal (earning Anne's permanent hatred) at the bequest of Henry Tudor, who'd decided he wanted the toothsome Anne as his new mistress...

Anne wasn't having any of this, and left Court. When the idiot Tudor came wooing, Anne saw him as a way to get revenge on Wolsey...

Now I'll admit revenge is not a pretty motive, but Anne's family was well off, and had hoisted itself up the social ladder on the petticoats of the eldest daughter, Mary. So call Anne a scheming bitch if you like (I'll more than agree with that) but wealth wasn't the motivation.

#77 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 09:55 AM:

What's that about bowling with heads?
("Serge, it's Boleyn's head.")
Oh.
Nevermind.

#78 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 10:51 AM:

Lori: I stand corrected. I was thinking more of wanting to be Queen than of wealth per se, but it appears that wasn't quite it either. Scheming bitch it is.

She was a better person than Henry, but of course that's not exactly a high standard. My point is that Elizabeth was a flower that grew from two shitheaps.

#79 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 11:23 AM:

Thanks, Xopher -- I'm an admirer of Elizabeth I, too, and I agree that neither of her parents were very admirable human beings.

I've always felt sorry for Anne, she was dealt a pretty lousy hand -- you know that betrothal Wolsey ended? Well, during the proceedings that led up to Anne's beheading she was forced to admit that that betrothal was valid.

So by Church and common law she was not married to Henry at the time she was supposedly committing adultery -- the worst she could be convicted of was being a harlot or committing bigamy not treason.

The penalty for these crimes* is not beheading. So Henry and the nobles who condemned Anne are guilty of murder.

*In the case of Jane Shore, Edward IV's mistress, she was made to carry a candle through the streets to a church while wearing only a chemise to demonstrate her penitence.

#80 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 12:18 PM:

Lori Coulson @ 71 ...
*In the case of Jane Shore, Edward IV's mistress, she was made to carry a candle through the streets to a church while wearing only a chemise to demonstrate her penitence.

It's interesting to think that Jane Shore would have been mortified at being outdoors in her underwear -- underwear which covered more than many women wear in total, today.

I do find that when wearing historical clothing, my notions of modest and appropriate coverage resets itself in remarkable ways, and strongly suspect that I'm not the only one.

#81 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 12:29 PM:

xeger, I've noticed that about modesty re-setting itself too -- to the point where, when I first saw the Lady Tudor-Glitz cartoon where Lady T-G, in her usual gown, says to the Celtic warrior-girl in the knee-exposing great kilt, "Cover yourself, my dear, you're nearly naked!" it took me several tries to realize that the point of the joke was that Lady T-G's gown showed quite a lot of cleavage.

I will say that Jane Shore's chemise may have put fabric over a great deal of her anatomy without actually concealing any of it, depending on how fine the cloth was.

#82 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 12:39 PM:

Rikibeth @ 81 ...
I will say that Jane Shore's chemise may have put fabric over a great deal of her anatomy without actually concealing any of it, depending on how fine the cloth was.

True... but I rather suspect that she'd have selected her chemise with due care (given the option, at any rate), and aimed for something other than the finest linen...

I'm now wondering if there's any way to find out which chemise she wore :D

#83 ::: Lizzy L ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 12:59 PM:

People forget how young Ann Boleyn was. She was 18 when she came to court and fell in love with Percy, and found herself pursued by Henry, who was the King, married, and also her sister Mary's lover. (He was only 34, by the way, and probably still a hunk, stunningly charismatic, and the most powerful man, etc. etc.) She was only 29 when they killed her. A scheming gold-digger? No doubt. She refused Henry at first, and then told him she wouldn't sleep with him unless he married her. It's possible she thought being married would confer some level of protection. However, she was unsubmissive and hot-tempered, and of course Henry had the Tudor temper, plus she produced no sons. (And whose fault was that!) He married Jane Seymour the day after Ann died.

#84 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 01:05 PM:

Lizzy 83: He married Jane Seymour the day after Ann died.

Well, yes, that being the real reason he murdered her. I wasn't aware that it was so blatant, though. He really was a King-sized pile of stinking shit, wasn't he?

#85 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 01:40 PM:

Jane Seymour, who wound up in Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger...

#86 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 01:49 PM:

Xopher @84: Oh, yes -- Henry had the Tower cannons fired to let him know when Anne was dead. His horse was saddled and his retinue waiting, so he could gallop off to Wolf Hall to marry Jane.

Jane had spent the time after Anne was arrested preparing for the wedding. (For those who may not know it, Jane was one of Anne's ladies-in-waiting, the same service both Jane and Anne had rendered Queen Katharine, Henry's first wife.)

#87 ::: Lizzy L ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 02:07 PM:

Xopher, yes he was a world-class shit, and yes, Ann was executed so that he could marry Jane. (BTW, it's possible that he did not marry Jane the day after Ann died. That first ceremony may have been a betrothal. A second ceremony took place about a week later. But the folks at that time had a custom of repeating wedding ceremonies, so we don't know.)

But the failure of Catherine and Ann to produce a male heir was probably the overriding reason, though certainly not the only one. If Mary or Elizabeth, either, had been healthy boys...

Elizabeth I (after whom I was named, and whom I deeply admire) had her father's hair, charisma, and temper, and also his brains and his ambition. But during her years in exile, when she never knew if the next day she might be arrested (as she was) and killed, she developed an iron self-control and a remarkable tendency toward caution which contributed greatly to the longevity of her reign. Her decision not to have children, wherever it sprang from, was incredibly smart.

Jane Seymour also died (post-childbirth) when she was 29.

#88 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 02:43 PM:

Wow, so you're Elizabeth L (as in the 50th)?!?!? Tell us of the far future generation from which you come, pray do! :-)

And that Jane Seymour was a heartless bitch too, huh? Not a lot of nice folks hanging around court then, I gather.

#89 ::: Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) ::: (view all by) ::: December 31, 2008, 06:04 PM:

Xopher @ 88

Heartlessness was selected for in European royal courts. If you had any scruples you either left court for a more congenial environment in the country, or you lost them quickly and joined in the fray.

Elizabeth was a great ruler, in part because she had so much steel in her character. It takes a certain heartlessness to keep a spymaster like Sir Francis Walsingham, who used torture and probably covert assassination as standard tools, and who worked for a long time to obtain the execution of Mary, Elizabeth's sister. As I understand it, he temporarily lost favor with Elizabeth after Mary's execution, not because she regretted her sister's death, but because she was uneasy about the precedent the death of a fellow monarch might set.

#90 ::: Mez ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2009, 12:26 AM:

Bruce (StM) (#89) Mary Stuart (aka Mary I of Scotland, crowned Queen of Scots at 9 months old) may have been related thru her father, James V, or mother, Mary of Guise, to Elizabeth I in that web of royal & noble marriages across Europe. She's not Mary Tudor (Mary I of England, aka Bloody Mary) Elizabeth's half-sister by Henry VIII's first wife, Queen Regnant before her, now buried in the same Westminster tomb.

I believe the film Ridicule deals with the courtly process of removing one's heart, like The Candidate does in a more modern political milieu.

Mary/Marie/Maria (in honour of Our Lady/Notre Dame, the BVM) was such a popular name in Europe for so long that there were combinations like Marie-Therese or Marie Antoinette (originally Maria Antonia) to help stop confusion.

But, Xopher (#73), weren't there any humans anywhere on the planet living reasonably Good lives around that time? Looking at history thru the lens of palace & political intriguers from Roman (or earlier) times onwards to today you'd see very little to give you hope for the species.

#91 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: January 01, 2009, 11:36 AM:

Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) #89: Surely the court apothecary would have had scruples?

#92 ::: Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2009, 01:04 AM:

Dram you, Fragano Ledgister!

#93 ::: Bruce Cohen (SpeakerToManagers) ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2009, 01:08 AM:

Mez @ 90

D'oh! That wasn't a slip of the mind; those wires have been crossed there in the back of my brain for a long time; for some reason I remembered the two Marys as being the same person. Thanks for straightening me out.

#94 ::: Michael I ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2009, 09:30 AM:

Fragano@91

There may be a grain of truth to that. At least ounce in a while...

#95 ::: Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: January 02, 2009, 11:15 PM:

xeger: No, you aren't the only one who has different sensibilities when wearing historical dress. It's amazing how differently I percieve those who are garbed, and those who aren't when I'm working the faire.

Bruce Cohen (StM): No probably about it. Walsingham used assassination, judicial murder, and every other thing he could think of to keep the state stable.

#96 ::: Spam deleted ::: (view all by) ::: January 04, 2009, 07:39 AM:

Spam from 98.200.94.70

#97 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: January 04, 2009, 07:55 AM:

Mez @ 90... I believe the film Ridicule deals with the courtly process of removing one's heart

It did, but Fanny Ardant's character was shamed for what she did.

#98 ::: Jon Meltzer finds vasilware's spam disturbing ::: (view all by) ::: January 04, 2009, 08:11 AM:

Persistent little cuss ...

#99 ::: Constance ::: (view all by) ::: January 04, 2009, 01:16 PM:

Xopher @#70

"I wonder if The Tudors will make that sexy bad boy up into the ugly greedy old schlumpf that Henry became...when the time comes?"

Rhys whatever his name has decidedly nixed that. He announced way back last autumn in the London Times Arts and Entertainment section puff piece on the new season of The Tudors that he will neither bulk up his finely buffed bod nor don a fat suit.

After all history is not the point of the series, as all have noted. Hot bodies interacting in fraught circumstances are.

I did find the characterization of Ann Boleyn in The Tudors engrossing, emphasizing as it did how difficult it was to keep Henry enthralled simultaneously without him finally turning that anger on her. A son and heir was what it was all about. As well as lust. Ann Boleyn was so used by her family, which from what I understand of the historical record was the case. What shits the men of her family were. All of that is in the series, as why not, since it is splendid dramatic material.

But what I liked most is that you can understand, as the historical has always told us, just what an exceptional person Ann was -- her charm plus her intelligence. Her family ordered her to play the King, but they couldn't tell her how. Woo.

The scenes early on when Henry begins to stalk woo Ann at the Court masks and balls are marvelous. It could have been like that, though of course we don't know.

I thought the character of Henry's Queen Catherine was also played brilliantly.

Henry himself and all the rest -- forget history.

Love, C

#100 ::: John Houghton spots self-pimping spam ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2009, 08:57 AM:

I'm petty sure ML doesn't exist to promote a stranger's blog.

#101 ::: Earl Cooley III sees more spam ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2009, 09:22 AM:

More, similar bad spam. I've got to wonder if they're not so much as trying to spam ML as pollute ML's RSS feeds.

#102 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2009, 09:57 AM:

I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

Humph. He didn't even bother taking me out for dinner first.

#103 ::: Michael I ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2009, 10:56 AM:

Serge@109

Perhaps he assumed you'd be at work.

Since we've all heard that the Serge is working...

#104 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: January 08, 2009, 11:10 AM:

Michael I @ 110... :-)

#106 ::: Phil Armstrong ::: (view all by) ::: January 10, 2009, 04:27 PM:

Adam Buxton (of Adam and Joe fame in the UK) did something a little similar with the ceremonry for the investiture of the new pope

#107 ::: Phil Armstrong ::: (view all by) ::: January 10, 2009, 04:28 PM:

And I can't type straight today. Oh well.

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