I’m so proud of myself. I sat through an hour-long DVD of my eight month old first cousin (once removed) crawling about making goo goo noises and producing sicky-burps, but made only two facetious remarks.
Maybe it was a side-effect of the abundant quantities of clean, salty Devonshire air that has been adding value to my otherwise ordinary respiratory system, but I think a greater factor in my uncharacteristically polite attentiveness can be attributed to having read ‘Etiquette For The Renaissance Gentleman’ the previous evening, first published in 1528.
A joy from start to finish, I offer the following excerpt for the amusement of perhaps only Pete:
Then, as for the physical appearance of the courtier, I would say that all that is neccesary is that he should be neither too small nor too big, since either of these two conditions causes a certain contemptuous wonder, and men built in this way are stared at as if they were monsters.
If one is forced to choose between the two evils, then it is better to be on the small side than unduly large – men who are huge are often found to be rather thickheaded, and moreover they are also unsuited for sport and recreation, which is most important for the courtier.