Mercurius Politicus

A blog (mostly) about early modern history

Tag: blog carnival

Carnivalesque 44

Right Honourable and Noble Senatours,

I here present you with a Catalogue, or Black Bill of the Errours, Heresies, Blasphemies and Practices of the early modern Bloggers of this time, broached and acted within these two last months in the Blogosphere: I much fear lest the subject matter of this Catalogue may prove unto England (unlesse some speedy and effectual course be taken to prevent it) like the Bill of Divorce given to Israel.

Now the Errours, Heresies, Blasphemies in this Catalogue particularised, may be referred to six heads or sorts of Bloggers, 1. Sailors and Explorers, 2. Precursors, 3. Writers, 4. Readers, 5. Soldiers, 6. Past-times.

Sailors and explorers

There is one Rachel Leow, who preaches both in Cambridge and New-England. On her going to New-England, she hath preached about the Carta Marina, a 1539 chart created by the Swedish priest Olaus Magnaus.

Meanwhile there is one new Blogger at Chronologi Citationes, whose Sermon on the early Stuart navy hath attracted much comment.


There is one Blogger, called only Vic, who comes out of Jane Austen’s World, who has lately printed a Discourse on advice columns and agony aunts in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

There is one Holly Tucker, who dwells at Wonders and Marvels. Very Erroneous, Strange Doctrines are vented there continually. The latest Preaching is of early midwifery.

There is a Blogger who lives in a place of Sunlit Water, who hath preached the heretical doctrine of a missing day in sixteenth-century Europe, eliminated by a Papal Bull.


There is in the Dutch Republic one Kristine Steenbergh, who hath given publick Lectures on Shakespeare biography and cultural history.

There is another Blogger, one Morgan Pitelka, who preaches about the creation of the soul in pre-modern Japan.

There is a third, named Jem Webster, who dwells on a Gaudy Gilded Stage, and talks of the eighteenth-century actor and writer Thomas Holcroft.


There is in New-England one Sarah Werner, who hath been publishing Scandalous and Malignant Bookes. Most recent are three posts about a book originally owned by Frances Wolfreston, and what the marginalia can tell us about her and subsequent owners.

There is also in New-England another Scandalous preacher named Whitney Anne Trettien, who hath preached on the links between the book and the body. This heresy has been repeated by Kristine Steenbergh, in a Sermon on the body in the library.

I have been informed for certain that she hath also been speaking ungodly lectures about the potential pitfalls of digital history for early modern scholars.


There is one Edward Vallance, a most Radical preacher, who hath preached about the upstart soldier and sectary Oliver Cromwell. He has gathered a host of sermons about Old Noll, in what the heretics are now calling a Carnivale of Blogs.


There is a noted Blogger, one Roy Booth, whose Lectures are now replaced by Sermons about training parrots to perform music in eighteenth-century England.

Cardinal Wolsey, who I presumeth still dwells at Hampton Court, has taken as his subject historical re-enactors, reviewing Tim Moore’s book I Believe In Yesterday.

There is a collection of Scandalous preachers, who come together at Blogging the Renaissance. I hath heard reports of a most malignant Sermon on Robert Dover and the Cotswold Games, early modern England’s equivalent to the Olympics.


With apologies to Thomas Edwards, who must be rolling in his grave as you read this. For more on Edwards and Gangraena, see:

Thanks to everyone who sent in nominations. Carnivalesque 45 – an ancient/medieval edition – will be up in November at The Cranky Professor.

Carnivalesque Logo

Carnivalesque: reminder

Carnivalesque Logo

A last-minute reminder that I’m hosting the next edition of Carnivalesque, the ancient and early modern blog carnival, here on Saturday 25 October. Any last-minute nominations can be sent to me through the automated submissions form.

Carnivalesque reminder

Carnivalesque Logo

Just a reminder that I’m hosting the next edition of Carnivalesque, the ancient and early modern blog carnival, here on 25 October. Nominations for the best of the early modern blogosphere in the last couple of months can be sent to me via the nifty automated submissions form.


The fortieth edition of Carnivalesque is up at This month it’s an early modern edition, with a long and wonderful selection of links.

Carnivalesque XXXVI


From Monday, January 21 to Saturday, February 16

Fellow Bloggers, there is no need to fear,

For weeks (forsooth) I have toil’d at my desk;

Scouring all things early modern in the Blogosphere,

To bring you this edition of Carnivalesque.

Nemo me impune laceffit.

The man in the moon

Christopher Thompson writes on William Gilbert, rector of Orsett prior to the English Civil Wars, who contemplated the possibility of life on other planets. Meanwhile Inkhorn discovers what Robert Burton had to say about little green men.

More on other early modern Fox Mulders can be found in David Cressy’s article on Early Modern Space Travel and the English Man in the Moon.

The Puritan revolution

Roy Booth searched for pamphlets about the the civil war attacks on Cheapside Cross. What he discovered confounded his expectations – one of the highlights being a puritan plan for a replacement after the old cross had been demolished.

Nancy Shoemaker writes – in a wonderfully illustrated article – about the importance of the whale in the lives of the Plymouth colonists. In the same issue of Common-Place, John Fea writes about Presbyterians in love.

A close reading on reading

At Serendipities, a woodcut from an emblem book sparks wider thoughts on the nature of reading in early modern Europe. For more on emblem books, check out the English Emblem Book project, the German Emblem Book project, or the OpenEmblem portal.

The chronicles of William Hone

Vince Hancock presents a regular podcast inspired by the almanac of William Hone, which looked at folklore and other interesting tidbits from fifteenth to eighteenth centuries.

Prating prelates

Roy Booth blogs about a preacher in the 1680s struggling against the temptations of chess – as the preacher puts it, “it is a great Time-waster”. No doubt some of us would say the same today about blogging… Meanwhile I post about a more pompous preacher from earlier in the century, Henry Walker, and how he was caricatured in royalist pamphlets.

Oh, how cruel the volley

A haunting ballad about the battle of Ticonderoga prompts Tim Abbott to re-tell a literally haunting ghost story about the Black Watch.

For God and trade routes

Headsman posts about 26 Christian martyrs, executed in Japan in 1597.

Nasty, brutish and short?

Melvyn Bragg leads discussion in a recent episode of In Our Time about Hobbes, Rousseau and the social contract. Greg Afinogenov also posts on Hobbes and the fragility of the social contract.

Court in the act

Charles Bainbridge blogs about Sir Philip Sidney’s Astrophil and Stella.

De Nachtwacht

Jen at Diary of 1 investigates Rembrandt’s The Night Watch, and how it has taken on a life of its own.

There is lately printed and published

The recent addition of 2004 deaths to the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography includes a number of eminent early modern historians. But is the DNB’s verdict final? Mercurius Rusticus considers Conrad Russell, while Oxoniensis looks at Christopher Hill.

Cardinal Wolsey reviews David Childs’s biography of the Mary Rose – Henry VIII’s flagship and now thankfully preserved for the foreseeable future thanks to a National Lottery grant of £21 million.

Kristine Steenbergh reviews Germaine Greer’s biography of Anne Hathaway. Meanwhile, you can hear Greer talk about the book in a Guardian Unlimited podcast.

And finally…

An alternative guide to Early English Books Online, courtesy of Sarah Redmond at LOL Manuscripts: highlights include posts on how to read black-letter print, understanding early modern religious iconography, and some less well-known images of the world turned upside down

Licensed and entered according to the Act for Printing.

London Printed by N.P., 2008