OT: Re: [HNW] New Books

Kirrily Robert skud at infotrope.net
Wed Sep 18 07:44:46 PDT 2002

While we're on the topic of murder mysteries...

I have recently read two Elizabethan murder mysteries, by two different
authors, that used blackwork as major plot devices.  In both books they
just didn't "get it".

The first one, set in the fairly early years of Elizabeth's reign, had a
blackworked doublet that was important to the plot.  Now, who in the
1560s would have blackworked a man's doublet? (in an all-over pattern,
if I recall correctly, as seen in 1580s sleeves and foreparts or those
1600ish womens jackets)  The only man in a blackworked doublet that I
can recall having ever seen is one from 1590, in one of the Thomasina
Beck books, and that was pretty unusual.

The second book was set just before Elizabeth's coronation, in say
1557-1558, and the plot had lots of stuff about blackwork samplers with
wreaths of leaves and biblical quotes in the middle.  To my knowledge,
16th century samplers were mostly of the "stitch reference" variety, and
weren't designed for display, then band samplers came in in the 17th
century when girls would work them as part of their schooling, and then
finally the sort described in the book came rather later.

Of course I don't really fault the authors for this... it's an obscure
point that very few people would know about... but I'll admit that since
this is one of my main areas of interest, it was *very* noticeable to me
and it annoyed me greatly!

Anyone else had similar experiences?


(SCA: Katherine Rowberd)

More information about the H-needlework mailing list