Yesterday, Troubadour and I got dolled up in our renaissance finest and attended our first Shrewsbury Renaissance Faire. Troubadour was sporting his Utilikilt, renaissance "cheesemakers" shirt, and of course the ceremonial dagger. I had on a traditional embroidered renaissance long dress. Not sure if the word traditional should be used with the word renaissance or not, but we'll just say it appeared more peasant than the fancy royalty we saw at the Faire. Unfortunately we did not get any pictures of us, of that I am rather disappointed.
It started out a chilly day in the high 40's. By the time we made it to the Faire about 11:00 am, it had warmed up to the high 70's with intermittent clouds. We were glad we had long sleeved clothing on and not short and I was also glad for the long ankle length dress for warmth. The sun was shining nice and bright though.
We arrived at the Faire and parking was not a problem. This was the view as we walked towards the entrance:
At the entrance we traded in our tickets for a hand stamp. Par for the course for any festival I believe. In entering the Faire, Troubadour had to have the handle of his dagger tied to the sheath. It might have been the first time a lady has ever said to him "Good morrow, I need to tie your piece."
Once in the Faire we wandered around a bit. The jousting did not start until noon and we wanted to be sure to see it. It was the main reason I wanted to go. In wandering around we saw quite a few people dressed in period costumes.....
We strolled for about half an hour and then headed over to the outdoor arena for the jousting event. The Imperial Knights travel around and perform the jousting events at different Faires. We learned that all of their horses are rescue horses so a big" huzzah" to them.
In came Sir Richard, the White Knight, who also acted as Master of Ceremonies:
then Sir Thomas, the Black Knight:
and Sir Anthony, the Blue Knight (the crowd dubbed him Fabio):
and finally Sir Daniel, the Red Knight, on the largest horse I have ever seen:
After introductions they started off racing down the line trying to put their lances through a bulls-eye painted on a bale of hay. They all made their marks and I don't think any of them missed once.
Then they rode the line and put their lances through rings hooked on a stand. The rings were not that large and I think it would have taken them quite some time to master this feat. I don't think any of them missed a single ring. In this picture you can see the Red Knight talking with the White Knight and the stand that held the rings is wrapped in blue and yellow.
From there they went on to the jousting. They made several passes but it was difficult to photograph so I just have one really good shot from when they connected.
Turns out we were standing under the flag of the Black Knight so for half an hour all we heard was "Huzzah for the Black Knight." I have never heard the word huzzah so many times, but we still had fun.
After the Knights were knocked from their horses while jousting, they moved on to hand to hand combat with claymores, shields, battle axes, etc.
We did get some good short videos of the fighting and I will try and get those up in a follow-up post. Not sure I know how to attach them at this point.
After the jousting we walked around the dozens of booths that different vendors set up. Some selling pottery, renaissance clothing, knick knacks, etc. We did get to watch a working blacksmith so that was interesting.
We had a nice curried veggie wrap from the Indian food vendor and then some organic iced lattes and peanut butter cookie from a coffee vendor. Pretty soon we were sunburned and ready to head home. I think our sunburn was authentic as they didn't have sunscreen back in the day and I forgot ours at home.
Before heading out I snapped a picture of this contraption. Not sure if it is a modern day rendition of a medieval chastity belt, but I am glad I don't have to wear one....
"The Realm of Fairy is a strange shadow land, lying just beyond the fields we know." ~ Author Unknown