April 14, 2014

Coach and Sedan

Pleasantly Disputing for Place and Precedence, The Brewers-Cart being Moderator. A small book by Henry Peacham written in 1636 and detailing an argument had between two forerunners of the London cabby on the streets of London. What is handy is that the text agrees with the pictures, dating the image securely and there is a description of what the two are wearing.

 

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The One (the lesser of the two was in a suite of greene, after a strange manner, winnowed before and behind with Isen-glasse, having two handsome fellows in greene coats attending him; their lace coats were lac’d down the back with a greene lace suitable, so were their half sleeves which persuaded me at first they were some cast suites of their Masters; their backs were harnessed with leather cingles, cut out of a hide so broad as Dutch-collops of Bacon, whereat I wondered not a little, being but newly come out of the Countrie, and not having seen the like before.

 

Here he is in his green coat with half sleeves, over a doublet and breeches, as well as a tradesman’s cap and  small falling band. Over all he has the leather straps (like Dutch collops) that spread the load of the sedan chair/

 

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The odd thing about this description is that id doesn’t really tie in with the picture. However, if you look at this as a satyrical piece, you realise that the character “Coach” is actually the coach rather than the coachman!

 

The other was a thick burly square set fellow, in a doublet of Black-leather, Brasse-button’d down the brest, Backe, Sleeves, and winges, with monstrous wide boots, fringed at the top with a net fringe, and a round breech (after the old fashion) guilder, and on his back-side an Atcheivement of Sundry Coats in their proper colours, quartered with Crest, Helme and Mantle, besides here and there, on the sides a single Escutchion or crest, with some Emblematicall word or other; I supposed they were made of some Pendants, or Banners that had been stollen, from over some Monument, where they had long hung in a Church.

 

The actual description comes a bit further on, though I must admit I’m none the wiser, though I love the language here:

Beeing in this discourse comes whistling by with his Carre, a lustie tall fellow red-haired, and cheeks puffed and swolne as if her had beene a Lincoln-shire-baggpiper, or a Dutch Trumpeter under Grobbendonck, in a Canvas frock, a red-cap, a payer of high-shooes, with his whip in his hand

 

Here’s the carter in his leather doublet (note brass buttons in the text) and his livery coat over the top. Strangely no boots, though the woodcut seems correct in all the other departments.

 

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April 10, 2014

The history of the Most Vile Dimagoras

An epic poem by John Quarles published in London in 1658. Slightly beyond our time, but this picture caught my eye today because of the cap being worn by the cavalry trooper in the foreground.

He is dressed in a short jump coat with slashed sleeves, breeches and riding boots. On his head he is wearing a montero cap, a woollen peaked cap with skirts that fold down for protection in bad weather. There aren’t many of these caps in illustrations from England, though they do appear in literature and seem to have been reasonably common for soldiers of the period. Nice simple sword too. The lady he is menacing has free flowing hair, often a sign of distress and a petticoat and bodies. The cavalry in the rear may also be wearing montero caps, though it’s tricky to tell.

 

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April 4, 2014

A Catalogue of the Several Sects and Opinions (Part 4)

The Anabaptist. believed that candidates for baptism should be able to make a confession of faith at the same time and as such rejected the accepted method of baptising infants. This was a hot topic in the 1640s and long tracts were written about it putting both sides of the argument. Both the candidate and the baptising minister are stripped to their underclothes, this being one of the only images from the period of a man wearing (under) drawers.

 

 

 

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 13.13.56Poore men contrive strange fancies in the braine,

To cleanse that guilt which is a Leopard staine:
‘Tis but a fain’d conceit, contended for,
Since water can but act its outward matter:
Regenerate, new-born; these babes indeed
of watry Elements have little need.

Familists were a mysterious sect founded in the 16th century by Henry Nicholls (HN in the rhyme) and believed that things were ruled by nature, not directly by God as the popular opinion of the times would have it. They also rejected infant baptism and the movement appealed to the cognoscenti; artists, musicians and intellectuals. This chap is looking rather superior in a tall hat and coat.

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Were all things Gospell that H.N. hath said,
A strange confused worke were newly laid:
A perfect state, like Adams, is pretended,
Whilst out wardly each day God is offended:
No Sabboth, but alike all daies shall be,
If Familists may have their Liberty.

Seekers were probably the forerunners of Quakers. They rejected the organised church system, preferring to wait for God’s revelation. Our seeker is wearing a tabbed doublet rather than a coat and is proffering his hat in a respectful way.

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All Ordinances, Church and Ministry,
The Seeker that hath lost his beaten way,
Denies: for miracles he now doth waite,
Thus glorious truths reveal’d are out of date:
Is it not just such men should alwaies doubt
Of clearest truths, in Holy Writ held out.

The Divorcer. Not another sect, but someone who didn’t believe in the sanctity of marriage. The law allowed divorce in certain circumstances but this guy is obviously taking the law into his own hands. Mr and Mrs are wearing nice tall hats, the wife also in a smart petticoat and kerchief whilst the husband has a coat and plain falling band. I trust the staff is no bigger than his thumb!

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To warrant this great Law of Separation,
And make one two, requires high aggravation:
Adultry onely cuts the Marriage-knot,
Without the which Gods Law allowes it not.
Then learn to seperate from sin that’s common,
And man shall have more Comfort from a woman.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 4, 2014

A Catalogue of the Several Sects and Opinions (Part 3)

1646 Spotters guide to the current tide of religious groups in England.

 

The Libertine. Not really a sect though the term was first coined by Calvin. Libertines were for physical pleasure over everything else and rebelled against moral restraints. This chap is just about to smash the ten commandments with a hammer in his short coat, tall hat and sword baldrick.

 

 

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 13.13.08A pish at sin and open violation,

By wilfull lust, deserves just condemnation:

Repentance, though a Riddle, this Ile say,
Thou must unfold the same or perish aye.
Then least this holy Law thou yet dost sleight,
Shall presse thee one day with a dreadfull weight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Anti-Scripturian. This guy in a short coat (note the buttons on the back vent) is denying the power of the words in the bible. This doesn’t as far as I can tell seem to have been an actual sect, rather a feeling that not everything in the bible is literal truth.

 

 

 

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By cursed words and actions to gainsay
All Scripture-truth, that ought to guide thy way,
Without all question, were it in thy power,
Thou would it all sacred Rules at once devoure:
Poor man, forbear, thou striv’st but all in vaine,
Since all mans might shall but confirme the same.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Soule Sleeper believed that the human soul in not actually immortal, and that between death and Judgement Day the body is uncomprehending, in effect that the soul goes to sleep. This chap is obviously thinking long and hard about this in his coat (or doublet?) and falling band.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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That soules are mortall, some have dar’d to say,
And by their lives, this folly some bewray;
Whilst (like the beast) they only live to eat,
In sinfull pleasures wast their time and state:
Meantime forgetting immortality,
To woe or joy for all eternity.

 

 

 

April 3, 2014

A catalogue of the several sects and opinions in England (Part 2)

Continuing the pictures from the broadsheet from 1646/7, Here are three more.

 

The Arminian. Arminiansim was founded in the Low Countries and was based on the belief that every man had the free will to achieve his own salvation, and that it wasn’t predestined which way you would go after death as a lot of Independants believed. This chap is clothed in a gown over his clerical cassock (note the waist tie) with a wide brimmed hat and a ruff.

 

 

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Would any comfortlesse both live and die?
Let him learne free wills great uncertaintie:
Salvation that doth unmov’d remaine,
Arminian Logick would most maintaine,
And faith that’s founded on a firme decree,
Is plac’t by them to cause uncertaintie.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Arian. Arianism was an ancient belief that had been recently resurrected and concerned the relationship between God the Father and Jesus. A tricky one to explain, but indicative of the confusion of the times that some people were going back to the early days of Christianity for their beliefs. This chap is wearing a smart, short (or jump) coat over his doublet, a narrow brimmed hat and falling band.

 

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What they dare to deny, Christians know,
Christ God and Man, from whom their comforts flow,
‘Tis sad, that Christians dive by speculation,
Whereby they loose more sweeter contemplation:
Where Christian practice acts the life of grace,
There’s sweet content to run in such a race.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Adamite. As the name would suggest, these people wanted to go right back to the Garden of Eden, and professed to have regained the innocence of Adam by taking their clothes off. It was another throwback to the early days of Christianity and predated the 1960s by a considerable margin. Sadly there are no costume details here. This chap is wearing nothing but a smile.

 

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 13.13.00Hath Adams sin procur’d his naked shame,
With leaves at first that thought to hide his staine?
Then let not Adamites in secret dare
Aparent sinfull acts to spread; but feare,
Since Adams sin hath so defil’d poore dust,
Cast from this Paradise by wicked lust.

April 3, 2014

A catalogue of the several sects and opinions in England

..…..and other nations With a briefe rehearsall of their false and dangerous tenants. A single page broadsheet from January 1646 which amounted to a spotter’s guide of the various religious groups that were springing up all over England during the confused times. Each picture has an accompanying piece of doggerel to go with it. I shall go through one by one as the details are worth pointing out.

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The Jesuit is wearing a cloak over a longish coat with a broad brimmed hat. His linen falling band is laid over his cloak

 

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By hellish wiles the States to ruine bring,
My Tenents are to murder Prince or King:
If I obtaine my projects, or seduce,
Then from my Treasons I will let them loose:
And since the Roman Papall State doth totter,
I’le frame my sly-conceits to worke the better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One Evins a Welch man was lately commited to Newgate for saying hee was Christ. He’s sporting a coat (which is buttoned all the way down), breeches and is bareheaded. The cuffs of his coat are turned back, or faced in a contrasting colour

 

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 13.12.26By cunning art my way’s more nearly spun,
Although destructive to profession;
Obscuring truths, although substantiall,
To puzle Christians or to make them fall:
That precious time may not be well improv’d,
Ile multiply strange notions for the lewd.

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March 12, 2014

Popular Errours

Or the errours of the people in physick, first written in Latine by the learned physitian James Primrose Doctor in Physick. The Latin version was published in 1638, but the English translation came out in 1651 and featured this image. It was a defence of the arts of the learned physician against quack and untrained doctors written in an entertaining style, presumably so that he could reach the largest audience possible.

The picture shows a poor fellow in his sick bed, being ministered to by a doctor, but also a well meaning goodwife who is trying to help but is being restrained by an angel of mercy. She is wearing a petticoat, waistcoat, long apron, ruff collar and a wide brimmed hat over a linen coif. The doctor in a gown, cap and ruff and the ill fellow in his shirt and night cap.

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Here is a closer image of the woman. I’m still not completely sure what she is wearing on her upper half. Perhaps her apron reaches to her chin and she has tucked it under her stiffened bodies? There is a lovely poem on the facing page which represents the busy body trying to take over:

Screen Shot 2014-03-12 at 08.40.02Loe here a woman comes in charitie
To see the sicke, and brings her remedie.
You’ve got some grievous cold, alas! (quoth she)
It lies sore in your bones, no part is free.
His pulse is weake, his vrine’s colour’d high,
His nose is sharpe, his nostrills wide, he’le die.
They talke of Rubarb, Sene, and Agaricke,
Of Cassia, Tamarinds, and many a tricke,
Tush, give the Doctors leave to talk, I’ve brought
pepper posset, nothing can be bought
Like this i’th ‘Pothecaries shoppe; alone
It cures the Fever, Strangury, and Stone;
If not there’s danger, yet before all faile,
Ile have a Cawdle for you, or Mace-ale:
And Ile prepare my Antimoniall Cuppe
To cure your Maladie, one little suppe
Will doe more good, and is of more desert
Then all Hippocrates, or Galens Art.
But loe an Angell gently puts her backe,
Lest such erroneous course the sicke doe wracke,
Leads the Physitian, and guides his hand,
Approves his Art, and what he doth must stand.
Tis Art that God allowes, by him ’tis blest
To cure diseases, leave then all the rest. 

March 10, 2014

John Tradescant the Younger with Roger Friend

..and a collection of exotic shells. Painted by Thomas de Critz in 1645, this picture is in the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford. Tradescant we have met before, but Roger was a local brewer. Nice still life of the shells, and some decent details in their clothes. I’m tempted to suggest that John is trying hard, but failing miserably not to look at Roger’s nose.

John is wearing a black doublet with a plain linen band, though most of it is obscured by the silk (possibly velvet) lined cloak he is wearing over the top. Roger is in a nice madder red coat, or doublet with plain shoulder wings and some neat cloth buttons. His band is ever so slightly on the skew, suggesting that he either got dressed in a hurry or that it’s imperfectly attached and has migrated to the right during the day. © 2011 University of Oxford – Ashmolean Museum

John Tradescant the Younger with Roger Friend and a Collection of Exotic Shells

March 1, 2014

John Browne

from The description and use of the carpenters-rule together with the use of the line of numbers (inscribed thereon) in arithmatick and geometry. And the application thereof to the measuring of superficies and solids gaging of vessels, military order interest and annuities: with tables of reduction, &c. published in 1656. This is the fronticepiece engraved by Richard Gaywood.

Here is John, surrounded by a selection of geometric objects brandishing his carpenters rule. His coat is decorated with tapes or braid that extend outwards from the buttons at the centre and his sleeves are open at the seam to show his shirt sleeves. His breeches are full and gathered at the knee and his hose quite wrinkled at the heel. He has a stout pair of shoes and a wide brimmed hat. Nice big bushy beard too!

 

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February 27, 2014

The True Effigies of Hezekiah Holland

Minister of the Gospell at Sutton Valance in Kent. This is the frontispiece from his tome entitled An exposition, or, A short, but full, plaine, and perfect epitome of the most choice commentaries upon the Revelation of Saint John, published in 1650. Amongst other bombshells, the book revealed that the end of the world was 216 years away. A comforting result for Hezekiah, but not so much for us. The Reverend Holland was originally from Ireland and an independent cleric who had been appointed a living by Parliament when the previous incumbent Robert Smith was ousted for his Royalist leanings.

The engraving shows a few quirky details, not least the overlarge hand emerging from the folds of his gown holding a book and the odd way his plain falling band corners cross over. Perhaps this is a bit more true to life than the perfect versions we usually see. It gives the minister a bit more character I think. He is also wearing a plain black day cap and a short tabbed doublet of the kind that had been generally worn, but had not been the height of fashion, since the 1630s at least. The tassels on his band strings are nice too.

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