Friday, July 17, 2009

The Old Pilgrim says: Knights, do your own sewing, or better yet, somebody else's

Philippe de Mezieres (14th century):

The army chief must abstain from overeating and drinking and from public luxury... Remember Godfrey de Bouillon at the siege of Antioch. He was sitting on the ground in a little tent mending a saddle belonging to one of his squires when messengers arrived from the Sultan of Egypt. The Count of Toulouse, the Duke of Normandy and the Count of Flanders begged him to receive the embassy in state. Godfrey said he was more concerned that his Squire's horse should not be chafed by the saddle than he was with the Sultan's emissaries. So the latter were brought to Godfrey, who received them briefly but courteously. The Saracens, old and wise, were profoundly impressed and declared that this man would recapture Jerusalem.

Did Philippe take this idea that leading knights should sew in their spare time from Bernard of Clairvaux?

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Blogger Bavardess said...

An interesting little vignette (and I love the illustration). But I wonder, was Godfrey more concerned about the horse than about his squire? I guess sewing could keep you out of a certain amount of trouble...

1:46 AM  

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