The Medieval Monk looks at some further images from Mia Hansson's replica of the Bayeux Tapestry
In my blog interview with Mia Hansson last week, we discussed, amongst other things, the 'drama' between round-shaped and square-shaped armour scales, and the naughty bits in the borders of the Bayeux Tapestry.
So, very kindly, Mia has provided me with her own photographs which illustrate these two subjects, both in a way linked to the idea of medieval machismo.
Oh, and I asked the other Monk of this website to comment on the naughty bits.
The lady stitching from the upper side of the tapestry used roundish rings while the woman working from the lower side made her armour square. Imagine when they met in the middle! (Mia Hansson)
The naked woman on the right is very similar to representations of Eve after the Fall, found in the Canterbury manuscript known today as Junius 11, located in the Oxford Bodleian Library.
The naked fellow in the lower border is a labouring woodworker; he's shown with his broadaxe. His rather sizeable genitals fit into a repeating theme in the Tapestry narrative about excessive masculinity, or machismo.
Like the 'clericus' (cleric) in the upper scene, our naked squatting man, with his genitals proudly on display, holds his hand to his hip in a gesture of excessive pride (the same gesture is used by Guy of Pontieu in an earlier scene when he is confronted by William's messengers).
*Dr Monk discusses these and several other naked Tapestry figures in his study, 'Figuring out nakedness in the borders of the Bayeux Tapestry', in Making Sense of the Bayeux Tapestry: Readings and Reworkings, edited by Anna C. Henderson with Gale R. Owen-Crocker (Manchester University Press), pp. 54-74.