The True Manner of the Sitting of the lords and Commons

of both Howses of Parliament upon the tryal of Thomas Earle of Strafford, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. Etching by Hollar published together with the picture of the subsequent execution in 1641. I’ve already blogged here about the second picture which shows many more common folk in the crowd that gathered, but here are the great and the good of the land in 1641 gathered for the show trial. As ever in these images it’s the details that add to our knowledge.


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Here is the good Earl (letter V) in a cloak and daycap with his falling band pulled out to cover his shoulders. This is a common fashion, notice most of the assembly wear their collars in the same fashion, though you don’t often see the reverse view. There are a few caps sprinkled about in the throng but most are bareheaded, much in the fashion recommended for church attendees, only the old and infirm were allowed caps during prayers.



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This little group foreground right are the plaintiffs, all in cloaks with falling bands visible as before. You can see the construction of the crowns of two of the caps too, some of which are also edged with lace.


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The main body of the commons, most have their cloaks gathered about them. It must have been cold in the hall during the trial. A few glimpses of doublets are visible below the cloaks as are one or two round collars which I guess are ruffs. There were worn during this period by the older generation and professional men. Also spot the guy in the middle taking notes.


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Here the judges and barons and the Lord High Steward the Earl of Arundel who is still wearing his hat as are the two front rows below the rostra on either side. Maybe they were permitted hats as they didn’t actually block anyone’s view where they were sitting?


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