Sunday, August 28, 2011

"Prick-eared rogue, copper-nose priest"

Priest-appropriate insults from the 17th cent. (LRB, gated):
A Somerset churchgoer in 1632 complains that ‘there was nothing done at prayer time in the said church of West Lidford but tooting upon the organs, and that it delighteth him as much to hear his horse fart as to hear the said organs go.’ In an argument with the parson of Dogmerfield in Hampshire over a tithe in 1581, Rowland Bowrer declares: ‘Thou art a covetous man … Go take Mother Canning by the cunt again!’ Haigh spends several pages on the insults suffered by clergymen, such as ‘stinking knave priest’, ‘scurvy, stinking, shitten boy’, ‘totter legged and pilled priest’, ‘Scottish jack’, ‘jack sauce and Welsh rogue’, ‘a runagately rogue and a prick-eared rogue’, ‘polled, scurvy, forward, wrangling priest’, ‘wrangler and prattler’, ‘black-coat knave’, ‘drunken-faced knave’ and ‘copper-nose priest’. [...] There are many presentments for misbehaviour in church: drunkenness, brawling, gossiping, vomiting, scoffing at the minister, pissing in another man’s hat (Leigh, Essex, 1627), or ‘extreme sleeping’ (Fering, Sussex, 1613). Sex offences were common: fornication, adultery, bastard children, cross-dressing, lewd talk.
Unrelated (see pic above): foxes repurposing an abandoned conveyor belt as a slide. Via zunguzungu.

1 comment:

Jenny Davidson said...

Good match of text and picture!