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Destrier  was the newsletter of the Medieval SIG in American Mensa, of which he was the second member.

About Us
The Twa Brether,
A habbie on the dicephalous twins of the court of James III
(which won third prize a Middle Kingdom poetry contest)

O ye wha in this bigly ha be,
Busk ye ta hear o' ae sooth ferly,
Wha I hae seen wi' me ain guid ee
                  o'  brether twa,
What brook wi' the king fu throly
                 an' winna ga awa!

Verament! The' ir nae wights eartly
Bat fae the Deil or the Hieland be!
Aboon ae braw an' weel-far'd twa the' be
                   aneath bat ae ane,
Twa legys o' thame baith -- unshemly!
                   an' nae the richt wane!

Mony ae gumly knicht dee I ken
An' o' mae hae I hear'd sae aften,
Bat sica like thae hadna knowen
                   an' I downa dight
In lilly lowe or drumlie den!
                   I, ae billie wight!

When Knighthood Was In Flower by Edwin Casoden (Bobbs-Merrill, 1898)

This is a book able to make me enjoy history as I never did from the textbook. It is aa real history book though since it is based upon the firsthand knowledge of Edwin Caskoden's ancestor, dance master to Henry VIII. The plot, commoner wins the hand and heart of the princess, maybsound like a fairy tale but the problems of the lovers are seriously portrayed. Though Mary Tudor is Queen of France and heiress to the throne of England she is basically still only a young girl, a person needing to be loved for herself. With the inhuman, or too human, King Henry as the antagonist there are plenty of twists to the story until the very end. It was a book worth the search, a story worth knowing.


The navelstring of a boy newborn, dried and powdered and put into a drink

spider with web, whole and unbroken, shut in a nutshell, boiled in oil on a silver spoon and put in a drink

the herb vervain, gathered when flowering at full moon while saying the Lord's Prayer

nutmeg pricked with holes wearing dew, put in armpit for two days, dried on a tilestone, ground to a powder, and put in a drink

from De Alchemia by Albertus Magnus
The alchemist should be discreet and reserve, not letting anyone know his results, live alone, choose carefully the time for work, be patient, persistant and unwearying, faithfully observe, use only glass vessels, be in possession of funds sufficient to defray costs. Above all, he should avoid involvement with princes and lords. To begin with, they will urge him to accelerate the work unduly and in the caseof non-success he will be subjected to the worst of torments; while if he does succeed, prison will be his reward."