Saturday, October 01, 2005

Ash bow

We went to the Re-enactors Fayre (sic) in Pudsey today and bought a few things ... I've been thinking about doing more archery at shows, so had a bow on the shopping list. In particular, I wanted an ash bow, and Eagle Classic Archery does one. I knew they'd be at Pudsey, but would they have any in stock? At Kelmarsh, they didn't, so I left it. After all, there might be other archery traders at Pudsey, so I might get what I wanted then. We got there early and I got my self ash bow from Eagle. The lady in charge (Helen) was very helpful and talked be through how to string it up, etc; a good sale-person will take the time to do this, and she's one of them. So I'm very happy with my new toy, except that the garden isn't big enough for me to practice in :-( I shall have to wait till the group's next training event to practice!

Also on the list was some silk. Again, no joy at Kelmarsh, but this time Herts Fabrics, aka the lovely Ali, had some in at Pudsey, at the right price and a fair amount of choice on the colour. I was tempted by a nice rose-pink, but went for green in the end.

I also fell for a chafing dish. I'm afraid it's late medieval in date. However, I like them, so I got one from Jim the Potter, aka Trinity Court Potteries. John Hudson used them for his 17th century cooking the other weekend, but didn't bring any for sale. It's not for use at shows, though I might using it in the evenings. It can carry lighted charcoal which can either keep food warm, or be used to keep you warm, like a little brazier. Romans did have these ceramic braziers, but there is scant evidence for them in Roman Britain, though they appear in North Africa. Anyway, the one I've bought is light-brown glazed, so there's no way I can use it, as the Romans didn't generally go in for such glazes.


At 6:18 pm BST, Blogger Gabriele C. said...

Ohh, me wants a bow, too.

Now, that's funny that they have ceramic braziers in North Africa but not in cold, foggy Britannia.

Delirunt isti Romani, to quote a well-informed source. ;)

At 7:37 pm BST, Blogger Olga said...

Congrats on great buys, and be careful practicing with the bow!

At 9:14 pm BST, Blogger Stephen said...

I suspect that the Romans did use braziers in Britannia - in fact they probably used them until they broke, which is why they aren't found - at least not recognisably.

The alternative, that they didn't need braziers because they were all wearing nice warm trousers, is, of course, far too ridiculous to merit further consideration.

At 10:32 pm BST, Blogger Alex Bordessa said...

Gabriele: Regarding the use of ceramic braziers, I think the main idea is like the medieval chafing dishes, they can be used to heat up/keep food warm as well, which would be a good use in North Africa.

Stephen: I was talking specifically of ceramic braziers, not iron ones. Roman pottery studies are well advanced and they would be recognised if they were around; most Roman (and later) ceramics come in sherds from excavations, so we're good at recognising stuff in pieces! Also, a lot of pottery specialists work in sunnier climes, as well as Britain, so would know a brazier sherd if they saw one in this country. As it is, there are only about two possible sherds so far in the whole country. There are a couple of really odd (almost complete) things that might be braziers at Chesters, but the pot people aren't best convinced; they could easily be some sort of lamp.


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