[Sca-cooks] Above/Below the Salt was Greetings

Terry Decker t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net
Tue Mar 18 16:49:59 PDT 2008

This wasn't a dig at your knowledge or your talents.  It is a question of 
historical accuracy that popped into my head while reading about your feast. 
Be prepared for such questions to pop up every so often, it's the way we 

I started out creating not so accurate feasts and have progressed to the 
point (over 45 years cooking and over 30 in the SCA) where I am extremely 
interested in producing feasts that are as accurate as time and budget can 
produce for a given time and place.  To varying degrees, most of the people 
on this list are interested in the historical accuracy of food and feast, 
but we aren't opposed to people doing the best they can.

Above/below the salt feasts are somewhat traditional in the SCA.  They show 
every so often and are a good way, as you point out, to provide a two tier 
feast.  But from the evidence I have seen, they are an artifact of the 16th 
Century and later, probably with a Victorian assumption that this is the way 
feudal lords did it.  The question is not a matter of wording, but 
developing a knowledge of how a 13th, or 14th or 15th Century meal was 
served and serving the historically accurate meal in as accurate a manner as 
possible.  Think of it as another level to the game.


> Oooh, I have yet againg expanded my learning with medieval cooking...We of
> course are just using the above/below salt to haveand excuse to plan an
> expensive and and not so expensive feast.  Have others worded this
> differently in the past for such a feast?
> James

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