|| Description from exhibit catalog English Brass Rubbings by Kathleen Cairns: "King's Lynn--Robert Braunch, 1364, wives Letice and Margaret. Triple canopy with souls and angels above and eight weepers in civil dress on the sides. Beneath feet of figures is a Peacock Feast. the margin inscription is in Lombardics and Latin. (Lombardics is a medieval Italian script developed from Roman cursive.) Arms of England and France are on the left and the Braunch arms on the right. This is the largest brass in existence in England.
Robert Braunch was a wealthy merchant and mayor of King's Lynn. The Peacock Feast may record one he gave when he became mayor in 1349, or it may be a celebration of a feast given annually on the day of St. Margaret's Fair in the city. Figure on the extreme left at the table may be Edward III, listening to music. Peacock and other bird feasts were not rare in the 14th century and entailed much preparation. The Peacock was an emblem of pride and immortality; its flesh made one incorruptible. It also was considered the food of love and courage. After the bird was cooked, the tail and head feathers were replaced. On special occasions, the whole bird was gilded. Only ladies of distinguished birth, rank, and beauty were permitted to carry and serve the bird. On the right, one lady is being aided by a man who is stepping over the table. Wild men are seen on the lower section (see Lubeck brass). The musical instruments on the upper and lower panels provide evidence of 14th century musical taste. Six of the upper figures are Censing angles. The other angels are playing "soft" (bas) instruments, three stringed fiddles, portative organ, citole, psaltry, gittern and half-psaltry. In the lower panel, the left groups consist of a lady bearing a peacock, her attendants and two player of "soft" instruments, a fiddler and a citoler. The right group has a lady with a peacock and three players of bored (hault) instruments, two trumpets and a shawm (type of oboe). Trumpets are held in one hand and denote war trumpets. These are played when royalty is present.
INSCRIPTION: Pray for the souls of Robert Braunch, Letice and Margaret, his wives. And for all the sheep. Who died on the 5th day of October A. D. 1364. may their souls rest in peace by the mercy of God. Amen."
From the catalog, An Exhibition of Medieval Brass Rubbings by Kathleen H. Cairns: Information identical to previous entry
|| Cairns, Kathleen H. An Exhibition of Brass Rubbings from the Collection of Kathleen H. Cairns, December 5, 1971 - January 14, 1972. Botetourt Gallery and Museum, Swem Library, College of William and Mary. Catalog #30.
Felgate, T.M. Knights on Suffolk Brasses. East Anglian Magazine Ltd. Ipswich, Suffolk 1976.
Spinke, Winifred. A Memento from Old England. Bury St. Edmunds, n.d.
Medieval Brass Rubbings (exhibit catalogue), Pittsburgh, 1969.
English Brass Rubbings (exhibit catalogue), Williamsburg, VA, 1971.
Cotmans, John Sell, Esq. Engravings [on?] Sepulchral Brasses, v. 1 (Norfolk, 1839), p. xxii.
Cairns, Kathleen H. An Exhibition of Medieval Brass Rubbings, December 7, 1969 through January 4, 1970. Frick Fine Arts Building, University of Pittsburgh. Catalog #58
Cairns, Kathleen H. An Exhibition of Medieval Brass Rubbings, October 20 through November 19. Catalog # 46.