This week’s marginal image is found in the bas-de-page* of the Bodleian Library’s MS Douce 5. Incidentally, if someone comes up to you at a cocktail party** and asks you what your favorite fourteenth-century Flemish Psalter is, you’ll look all smart and refined if you reply, “Why, Bodl. Lib. MS Douce 5 of course.” Extra points if you can pronounce the periods at the end of the abbreviation.
Where was I? Ah, yes. This week’s image:
You’ve heard of the phrase, “kicking a man when he’s down”? The medieval equivalent, clearly, was, “poking an ape’s butt when he’s accidentally stuck his head into a dragon’s mouth”. At least among medieval rabbits.
The best part, for me, is the dragon’s reaction shot. “Do you mind?” he’s clearly saying, “I’m kind of in the middle of something here.”
*I could have said “bottom of the page,” but if I had, then what would I footnote?
**It should be noted that I got to like two cocktail parties a year, but for some reason they still remain my go-to context for oddball conversations.