Monday, 14 April 2014

"M" is for Minstrel and Marigold

In Anglo Saxon England a professional poet was called a "scop". He composed poems for his Lord and would sing them to the accompaniment of a harp. 

In the late 13th century, it was the "minstrel" who provided entertainment through music and song. Some minstrels were also Jesters and practised juggling. They were rarely seen by 1700 although a few did form troupes in the early 19th century and toured the music halls of that era. 

As a child I enjoyed hearing the legend of King Richard I and his minstrel, Blondel. After the King was captured and held for ransom in 1192 Blondel went from castle to castle singing a particular song known only to the King and himself. Eventually Richard answered by singing the second verse, and Blondel was able to help him escape.

It's a lovely tale, but like many legends which have been retold across the years there's likely now to be only a grain of truth in this final version. 

And "M" is also for Marigold, the old English variety I used to help my Father plant every year in our garden.

Thank you for visiting the Hope and Dreams Blog. I'll be posting "N" here tomorrow to continue the A-Z Blog Challenge.