A snippet from The Duke Is Dead, coming this summer from me and Irene Headley:


good sire you know mee not and i prey you not to be angered that i write unto you. i am paulatus of vascony a servant of god oure redeemer and of her grace the duches of montfaldry.

i write to you to saye that there has been here at the manor whyche i hoold of her grace a man of your household called fader grantheus ande hys pygge odus. and he hath preched here. and he hath eaten of my kytchen and dranke of my wyne. and his pygge also. and i have given to him a blanket worth iv denarii from my own store. and he sends to tell you that he goeth to the citee of nogigantum in kosmos to preche to the empresse there.

i would that you send me moneys for his kepe, and also goode sir, for the love of christen men, that if you have more pygges like unto the pygge odus, you should send such to me. for we have no pygges the like here in montfaldry. and wishing unto you the blessyngs of almighty godde


I promise you it isn’t all spelt like this, though I have had a lot of fun composing pastiche medieval verses for the chapter headings.

Underneath the chery tree
So he preaches, mery be!
Our Lord was hung on a cross of wood
Mine own stave is strong and good
He was percéd by stout nayles
Yf ye be so perced, sans fayle
Thus His pasyoun ye shal know
Mery come and mery go!
So he precheth to the maydens
That fair lusty monk of Braydon.

Owen Roose, The Lusty Monk Of Braydon

Medieval poetry: it’s not all misbehaving clerics, but there are a lot of misbehaving clerics.

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