Pre-digital

20Oct09

The downstairs corridor at Felbrigg Hall has a large display of stuffed birds. It is a fine collection or a barbaric collection, depending on your point of view, of many species, several of which are now near extinction.

The birds were shot in second half of the 19th century by the grandfather of the last squire of the hall. He had the collection stuffed and mounted for his friends to see. Like a Facebook gallery.

In other rooms in the hall there is a collection of paintings gathered by one of the earlier squires on his grand tour of Europe in the late 18th century. He was touring for five years and he posted the paintings home at intervals. His family and friends could look at the images he had posted and monitor his progress around the continent. Like a blog.

Near the stuffed birds, if you look closely, there is short poem scratched raggedly into the glass pane of the window. It was etched by a lovestruck servant of the squire to declare his feelings for a local girl. When she rejected his advances he was perhaps embarrassed by his public declaration of love. Like a badly judged Twitter comment.

The hall gets very cold in winter. The squires never got round to installing heating. It’s as if they didn’t like technology.

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7 Responses to “Pre-digital”

  1. Do you know that she rejected his advances? Or do you naturally fear the worst in these situations? Perhaps it all ended happily ever after?

  2. 2 Becky Stafford

    Drew has got a point there, perhaps Alex does not hold out hope for love! it’s not all like Romeo & Juliet. :p

    I love going to Felbrigg Hall, my National Trust membership always makes visits more enjoyable 😉 I love doing the walks around the grounds at Felbrigg.

  3. It always surprised me that people cite Romeo and Juliet as an inspirational love story; they both end up dead from poison at a very young age! Surely something with a happy ending would be more appropriate? ;¬)

  4. 4 Becky Stafford

    In the case of Juliet a very young age, it’s hardly something to aspire too. Love’s young dream…death by poisoning. It’s always surprised me too Drew, whose story does have a happy lovey dovey ending?

    In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
    From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
    Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.
    From forth the fatal loins of these two foes
    A pair of star-cross’d lovers take their life;
    Whose misadventured piteous overthrows
    Do with their death bury their parents’ strife.
    The fearful passage of their death-mark’d love,
    And the continuance of their parents’ rage,
    Which, but their children’s end, nought could remove

  5. 5 alexoutside

    Drew – sadly the ending of the story is documented and our hot-blooded poet’s ardour was not reciprocated. He finished the story by writing a grumpy poem a while later – but he didn’t etch that one on the window.

    Becky – aww R&J is such a sad story. They did have a few happy moments though.

    “whose story does have a happy lovey dovey ending?” – Who’d like to supply a list?… There must be some!

  6. 7 Becky Stafford

    Ahh of course Mrs R Cinderella! *smacks head* how could I forget Cinderella. Then I suppose we could go on to list nearly every fairy tale/Disney!!!

    Sleeping Beauty
    Beauty & The Beast etc etc.


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