GC: Oftymes my freendes do mocke me for the studye of oolde bookes, for that Ich am alwey poringe over Macrobius or the tales of Ovide or sum swich thynge. What thinke ye of oold bookes? What good have they yn this tikel worlde, the which chaungeth into newe and shinye thinges with each passinge daye?
MA: The oold storyes are the keyes to Dreame-land. Scratch a newe and shinye thing, and ye will fynde an oold and shinye thing lurking beneath.
GC: Ye maye wisshe to telle the rederes of thys blog of the magical beastes of the far lande of Canade. Ich have reade of swich thinges in the Travels of John Mandeville. Are the legendes trewelye to be believed?
MA: Yes, Mayster Chaucer, the tales ye heare are trewe (thogh I feare nat to be found in Mandeville). To wit, the Beaver, much hunted for his scent, which biteth off its owne Stones and casteth them behind yt to distract its pursuers — and in such maner often do ower owne Politicians behave. Yet other straunge beastes abound: the Ice-wormes, that heate themselves up to drill holes; and the Wendigos, that flyen hungrily and with sharp teeth and claws over the snowe with feet a-flayme, and devoure men, which some do name as Tax Collectors. And many more straunge and curious creatures abounde.
Mistris Attewoode expoundeth wel and uptodatelyche the menynge of certayne oolde termes:
GC: Nowe Ich am goynge to seye a fewe wordes, and yf it plese ye, ye maye responde wyth the firste thynge that cometh yn to yower hede whanne ye heare the worde that Ich saye. (Thogh thys did nat go too welle wyth Ms. Launcecrona in an earlier interviewe, peraventure yower grete wisdam and gentilesse shal make for bettir resultes.)
GC:The Black Deeth?
MA: 1) Inspiracioun for The VIIth Seal. 2) And for Boccaccio. As Alice Munro hath seyde, no mattir how awful a thynge may be, “It’s all material.” 3) That which raised wages for (the remayninge) labourers. Hey, there’s always a bryghte syde! 4)Goinge to the dentist in the 1940s. 5) And, as luck wolde have it, the Great Mortalytye -- as it was trewly spoken of in yower tyme -- is one of my litel hobbyes. See Payeback, Chapter V.
MA: Code of honour seldom followed, except in literature, and by parfit gentil Knyghtes; OR rescuing chained-up maidens, with soft-porne illustracciouns; OR sayinge thank you when someone openeth the door for you.
MA: 1) My recipe for Calla Lilies, a swetemete of great delicacye. 2) What geekes did in late mediaeval tymes.