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GUEST,Anon A SWORD DANCE: it's rise and fall (12) A SWORD DANCE: it's rise and fall 01 Mar 01

It all started with the sword Hrunting for which Unferth and Beowulf bargained with a Briton named Myrddin to cast a powerful spell on it, so it might really live up to it's grossly inflated reputation. It didn't work worth a d--n on monsters, as the battle with Grendel's mother had proved. But that senile old charmer Myrddin got his spells mixed up and ended up sticking it in a rock, and had completely forgotten the spell to get it back out.

The sword was in that rock one very cold winter, when even the rocks shrank considerably, taking the poor sword with it. Finally King Arthur managed to extract it (in the summer the sword didn't actually fill the whole hole). But it was a quite a bit below standard size by that time, so it was described as ex-calibre, which eventually got taken as it's name. It also wasn't really very stiff anymore, and that was quite a problem. One of mankind's greatest failures, a problem now a millinenium and a half old, and as yet unsolved, is how to get viagra into a limp sword (the iron kind).

Evidence isn't very clear on the efficacy of Myrddin's viagra. Gwenhwyfar swore that it helped Dr. Lance-a-Lot's performance immensely. She was a generation younger than her husband and was evidently of frail health, and took very frequent draughts of Dr. Lance-a-Lot's elixir to preserve it. Thus she was never around when Arthur took it, and that's why of Arthur's sons, Gwydre, Amhar, Lllacheu, and Lolholt/Lohot, only the last is sometimes said to be Gwenhwyfar's son, and even that has been contested.

[When it came to mighty weapons few could compare with Conomoros, better known as p-Celt King Mark, son of Mad Meirchawn. When q- Celt Iseult of the long neck (or deep throat; the other p-Celt one had fair, not good mind you, but fair hands) discovered after her marriage to him how old he really was, and how run down himself, after going through many previous wives in Cornwall and Brittany, she figured she'd enjoy live a lot better and longer with his son, by name Drustanus (Tristan/Tristam), no puny warrior himself in the battle of the sexes. His still standing sizeable (viagraless) memorial stone was obviously modeled on his mighty phallus (and names Conomoros his father- like father like son). They just don't make them like that anymore, but it is hoped that a research project aimed at a restoration of the former status of anatomy will eventually provide women with some better comforts. [The memorial stone has been moved, so Drustanus's actual gravesite is unknown, and thus there's no DNA for a clone]. Mankind has grown taller, but that's not where growth is sorely lacking. Everyone should know by now the tale of the young married woman of Bruges that wanted to trade her husband for that donkey with the impressive pizzle. And maybe the one with the slow husband that had to get a friend to show him what to do with his brand new wife. The wife requested said friend to repeat the lesson, so her husband would be sure to get it all correct.]

Arthur lost his sword, or tossed it out, but accounts of this are quite at variance with each other. Subsequently it was recovered from a dried up puddle. Curiously, at the time, it seemed to be still clutched by a hand, seemingly female, to which an arm remained attached. It was a bit rusty, but by that time Myrddin's advise about stabbing rocks had been discarded and they had learned that one sharpens blades by just rubbing them on the side of one. [It was much later ascertained that lady in the puddle cut off her own arm when she saw what an impotent weapon it had grabbed for her.]

It was about then that either Owain Ddantgwyn or loving cousin Maglocunus (Maelgwyn Hir, who killed Owain's father and usurped his kingdom), sent abroad for Weyland to come over and hammer ex-calibre back into a reasonably proficient weapon (of war).

The sword later did yeoman service on some unknown minor Saxon kinglet that got himself royally buried and is know as the Sutton Hoo Who. Now that the sword's restored worth had been demonstrated the Britons renamed it the East Saxon sword (whose name is presently commemorated in that of an English dance group). The elegant burial was because the East Saxons were really quite happy to see the end of the crusty old dotard, and tossed in everything even remotely connected to him, and none was more happy than beautiful young Queen Jenny of Sutton. She was so impressed with that East Saxon sword that she made exhaustive tests of every weapon that came to hand (metaphorically, of course, fair hands yes, but that wasn't her main selling point), and became a noted expert on them. Her relentless pursuit in the search for excellence was celebrated in a song by a Captain Morris, by one account a q-Celt, who has taken considerable liberty with the facts]:

             Jenny Sutton

Come, charge your glasses, let us raise
    From dull oblivion's slumber
A gallant nymph, well worth the praise,
    Whose feats no man can number:
Her hand, like Caesar's, grasp'd it all,
    Till envy mark'd her station:
Then like great Caesar, did she fall
    By foul assassination.

    For every letch alike prepar'd
        She valu'd not a button
    And culls of ev'ry humour shar'd
        The charms of Jenny Sutton!

A by-blow on the world she burst,
    By furious love engenger'd?
Repleat with ev'ry spark of lust,
    That youth and vigour render'd.
The parish rear'd her, till she knew
    For what her parts were able;
Away from work-house then she flew,
    And quarter'd in a stable.
        For ev'ry letch, &c.

An empty stall supplies a bed,
    A dung heap was her bolster;
The gin and cheese on which she fed
    She kept within a holster:
A single pin at night let lose,
    The robes that veil'd her heart,
Then down she lay for public use
    To every man on duty.
        For every letch, &c.

A brat she bore, so mix'd of hues,
    That ev'ry corps deny'd it;
And whether Greys, or Buffs, or Blues,
    Was never yet decided:
Tho' troops of all sorts did surround
    Her Couchee and her levee,
The piebald imp was never own'd
    By light horse, or by heavy.
        For every letch, &c.

Yon pissing-corner was her stand,
    Where, safe from watchman's danger,
She undismay'd stretch'd forth her hand,
    To each unbutton'd stranger:
She bar'd her buttocks as they piss'd,
    To love them with her notions;
Then, like the Indian eel, did twist
    In strange electric motions.
        For every letch, &c.

Her voice had such a luscious force,
    That, serpent-like, it graces;
Did make each stranger turn his course,
    And stand to her embraces!
The chords of sympathy did rend,
    With notes so soft and thrilling,
That ravish'd misers stopp'd to spend,
    And fumble for their shilling!
        For every letch, &c.

Her body was a lott'ry fair,
    To prick whate'er pleas'd you:
In a-se, or c-t, or mouth, or ear,
    She ev'ry way would ease you.
No qualms or scrupples e'er had she,
    Whatever whim besieg'd you:
Still Jenny's kind assenting plea
    Was "Well, Sir, I'll oblige you."
        For every letch, &c.

A bumper let our fingers thus,
    High raise to her perfection;
For Jenny's fingers oft for us
    Rais'd many a stout erection!
Within our bosoms let her live,
    In kind retaliation,
Whose body did admission give
    To all the male creation!
        For every letch, &c.

Now tune thy trump, immortal Fame,
    To sounds of lewd sensation;
In bursts of baudy blast her name
    To ev'ry distant nation!
For ever let these climes resound,
    The scene of all her glory!
And Horse-Guard Jenny love renown'd,
    The first in Bunter's story.
        For every letch, &c.

The tune was perserved only by remnants of the Votadini and later published in a few Scots music collections. On such is:

T:Jenny Sutton
S:Aird's 'Airs', IV, c 1794
G/G/G GB dBdB|G/G/G GB cAFA|G/G/G GB dBdB|decA BG:|\
gGgG fGfG|efge dBAG|gGgG fGfG|efge ~e2d2|\
gBEg fADf|eGce dBAG|G/G/G GB dBec|BgAf g2G2||]

We've gotten a bit off the track (a la G. Legman, but we at least get back on it), so now back to our sword and it's dance. The Britons celebrated their victory over the Sutton Hoo Who with a newly choreographed dance that featured a lot of sword thrusting (probably with the young maidens of Sutton Hoo), and thus was the sword dance born. It was again preserved by the remnants of the Votadini (Most Votadini had left much earlier under Cunneda, ostensibly to separate the the p-Celts and q-Celts to the southwest, but he spent most of his time making himself their king. Separation of the ps and qs had gotten too complex anyhow, because of intermarriage, e.g., the Irish little king, q-Brychan Brycheinoig had married p-Meneduc, daughter of Constantine, the Romano-British Emperor, 433-43. History doesn't record any progeny of this union, and I suspect that was because geneology puts Meneduc 5 generations earlier than her husband, and she was most probably dead at the time of her marriage [Barber & Pykitt]. However, men were taken to be adult at age 14 and women at age 12 (much later 12 1/2), so sword thrusting began at an early age, and one could run through generations at a pretty good clip under those circumstances.)

Those former Angles, Saxons, Frissians, Jutes, and the like, then calling themselves English, (and calling the Britons foreigners- a bit of doublespeak gotten from a former Jute named George Orwell), changed it to the even less sensible "Looby Loo". It's subsequently been further degraded to "Hokey Pokey". I'm glad I'm old enough that I probably won't be around for the next change of name.

Unfortunately, the great Scots detergent, Alan Ramsay, in the early 18th century cleaned up everything he could lay his hands on, and the verses about putting swords and the like in and out were deleted. Fortunately, he didn't really understand the significance of the rest, or we wouldn't have much of anything left, as all to often is the case when Ramsay got done. I don't know if his paintings have been examined under X-rays to see how much he may have covered up that way.


Fal de ral la, fal de ral al,
Hinkumbooby round about.

Right hands in and left hands out,
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, fal de ral al,
Hinkumbooby round about.

Left hands and right hands out,
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, fal de ral al,
Hinkumbooby round about.

Right foot in and left foot out,
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, fal de ral al,
Hinkumbooby round about.

Left foot in and right foot out,
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, &c.

Heads in and backs out,
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, &c.

Backs in and heads out,
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, &c.

A' feet in and nae feet out,
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, &c.

Shake hands a', shake hands a',
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, &c.

Good night a', good night a',
Hinkumbooby round about;
Fal de ral la, &c.

[There seems to be a slight discrepancy here, as Myrddin, who Geoffrey of M. renamed Merlin, seems to have been a quite young lad at the time Arthur disappeared, and Tristan and Owain probably couldn't have climbed up on a chair at the round table, and Percival (Peredur of York), the successful grail quester, was at most a toddler at the time. Unfortunately, much of our history is from old accounts in monasteries and abbeys, and when those monks and priests got it in their heads that they were really doing God's work, there were no liars anywhere that could come close to matching them.]

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