Monday, April 30, 2012

Happy First Anniversary!

We wish the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge a joyous wedding anniversary!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Wedding of the Fifteenth Century!

The extravagant wedding of Charles the Bold and Margaret of York, the sister of England's Edward IV, is still commemorated by big celebrations.  These include feasts, medieval music, and colourful parades.  The Festival of the Golden Tree is one re-enactment of the festivities which takes place every five years.

The wedding took place in Belgium in 1468.  Although the wedding service was fairly private, the celebrations before the service were huge.  The bride was carried into the city on a golden litter pulled by golden horses.  She wore a beautiful jewelled coronet with diamonds and pearls.  She was greeted by thousands.

The streets of Bruges were hung with tapestries, flowers filled the bridges, and free wine overflowed.  Plays, pageants, fireworks and music entertained the bride. Knights jousted at several tournaments. Large feasts were held.  On one occasion a unicorn entered the hall to the sound of blasting trumpets.  The unicorn is a traditional symbol of chastity.

The Festival of the Golden Tree takes place every five years.  It derives its name from a tree with a gilded trunk which was part of the wedding decorations.
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