Archive for January 21st, 2013

January 21, 2013

A Juniper Lecture

With the description of all sorts of women, good, and bad: from the modest to the maddest, from the most civil, to the scold rampant, their praise and dispraise compendiously related. Also the authors advice how to tame a shrew, or vexe her. By John Taylor, printed in London in 1639

The picture looks like a still from a seventeenth century version of Terry and June, with the wife in smock and coif with cross-cloth on top trying to get her poor hard-working husband out of bed with a ladle, whilst he defends himself with a chair leg. Notice also the discarded doublet on the floor and the upended chamber pot, the contents of which are probably washing towards her unprotected feet.

Wondering why this book is called A Juniper Lecture, I began to read the introduction, and here is the answer.

“It is said that Juniper being on fire is the most lasting wood in the World, and that if the fire of it be rak’d up in the Embers, or Ashes, it will not be extinguished in a year or more, which may bee alluded to some revengeful women, who being once offended, the fire of their malice will hardly be quenched in their Ashes, or Graves. Juniper is hot and drye in the third degree (as Galen saith) and the tongue of a scold is altogether combustible: It is full of prickles, so are a curst womans words very piercing to the ears and sharpe to the heart”

Jooone, Jooone!

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January 21, 2013

Henry Grey, Earl of Stamford

Painted in 1638 by Cornelis Janssens van Ceulen. Grey was a parliamentary officer who fought all through the war. Here he is painted in a round frame, looking just over our left shoulder as we look at him, in a military buffcoat and gorget over which is a fine linen falling band with wide lace. The fabric is almost fine enough to be see through, but not quite. His coat is secured with a profusion of gold laces and he’s also wearing a white, possibly linen doublet with slashed sleeves.

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