Re: [SCA Newcomers] Feast Gear - eating forks in England
--- On Fri, 16/1/09, Sara L Uckelman <liana@...> wrote:
Quoth tenzicut _:
SNIPPED FOR BREVITY
They were used in the Middle East from at least the 7th C on, and brought to Byzantium by the 10th C.
Forks were introduced into Italy in the 11th C when the Doge of Venice married a Byzantine wife, but they didn't come into common usage in Italy until the 16th C, and weren't introduced into England until 1608.
if the eating fork "wasn't introduced into England until 1608", why do the inventories of Royal Posessions made following the deaths of Richard III, and of Henry VII list forks amongst knives and spoons amongst the eating tableware?
As a Historian, I have never been entirely sanguine about the bald claim that forks for personal use eating at table didn't arrive in England until OOP SCA timeline.
That's far too absolute ofr me - especially since I have made an intensive study of the many ways in the Medn.-Basin good, servicces, custoims, anfashions, and merchants had been reaching the Realm of England since the Cinque Ports Customs Rolls note Venetian-covoyed trade fleets arriving and trading from the early 14th Century.
I suspect that future research on this matter will find the bald claim for the late introduction of eating forks in the time of James1st - to be about as valid as the other bald claim hawked around when I was finishing my Secondary Education: - that "medieval people didn't travel, and lived and died within 15 miles of the places where they were born"1
The latter statement [ usually made without any "qualifiers"] by ignorant and arrogant teachers and graduates was always nonsense; and I suspect future research will disprove the late, 1608AD date for eating forks in England; and replace it with an earlier but less precise date - possibly a decade of the late 13th or early 14th centurry, after Venetian and Italian Merchants started setting-up their Houses in London's "Steleyard"
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- As far as I know nothing designates it as 'Yul'. This lady simply had her feast gear at the 'Yul' is what I heard her to say. For my T W O pence worth or were they ducats:(I promise you I know nothing of Irish money) I believe the Irish like the peoples in the Norse lands were slow to adopt the fork. The Irish seem despite their proximity to have been fairly cut off from the goings on in Europe and were slow in adopting anything European preferring to continue their Gaelic traditions in stead.