Gra Nomad Wanderings

Sunday, June 24, 2007


What an incredible bit of material... BIG bit of material.

When Fay and I were in Normandy we were taken by Jaqueline to see the Bayeux Tapestry. Man is that some tapestry! Actually it's not really a tapestry but an embroidery! But all the women probably know that anyway. Here are some bits I've grabbed from the net about the tapestry:

The Bayeaux Tapestry is really an embroidery but the word tapestry has stuck. The Bayeaux Tapestry is now on permanent public display in the city of Bayeaux in Normandy, France. It tells the story of the
Battle of Hastings; why William felt he had to invade, the preparations made for the crossing and the battle itself. Tapestries were not rare in the time of William but the size of this particular tapestry is an indication that it was important. The story it tells was to have a huge impact on Medieval England.

It is made out of linen (eight bands sewn together) and is 270 feet long and about 20 inches wide. It was once even longer but part of the tapestry at the end - after the
Battle of Hastings - has been cut off. The writing on the tapestry is in Latin. The main stitches used are stem stitching and laid-and-couched stitching.

Here you can read the tale told by the Bayeux Tapestry -The story of William the Conqueror and Harold, Earl of Wessex, the men who led the Norman and Saxon armies in 1066. William's defeat of Harold at the Battle of Hastings ensured the success of the Norman invasion of England.

The Bayeux Tapestry is preserved and displayed in Bayeux, in Normandy, France. Nothing is known for certain about the tapestry’s origins. The first written record of the Bayeux Tapestry is in 1476 when it was recorded in the cathedral treasury at Bayeux as "a very long and narrow hanging on which are embroidered figures and inscriptions comprising a representation of the conquest of England".

The Bayeux Tapestry was probably commissioned in the 1070s by Bishop Odo of Bayeux, half-brother of William the Conqueror. It is over 70 metres long and although it is called a tapestry it is in fact an embroidery, stitched not woven in woollen yarns on linen. Some historians argue that it was embroidered in Kent, England. The original tapestry is on display at Bayeux in Normandy, France.

Here are a couple of sites, but you can look it up for yourself pretty easily. You do need to see some of the pictures..... just a few!

I reckoned it was awesome. Now Fay is including a picture from the Bayeux Tapestry in the fancy travel quilt she's doing. Do you think she'll have to pay royalties! Happy birthday Fay for Tuesday 26 June.

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At 11:52 AM, Anonymous Bill from Nanaimo said...

YES, VG... i know about william the conquorer and battle of hastings etc...... as mum called me that......
BUT in class we didn't learn about the tapestry.......


At 11:53 AM, Blogger Keasty said...

Glad you appreciated it Bill. I'd never heard about it myself, which made it mind-blowing to see it.

At 1:19 PM, Anonymous Sarah Jane said...

Geez - what type of low budget school did you guys go to? We'd better check with the 3rd brother, and then the couple from the next generation that went there to see if it's improved!


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