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Re: VMs: Golden fleece, was Mad Kircher ...

Hi everyone,

At 06:10 10/09/2003 -0700, Rene Zandbergen wrote:
Slightly more seriously, I think that somewhere
in the pond there is a 'golden fleece'.  Look at
any portrait of Rudolf the second and you will
see what the insignia should look like.
Then look back at the pond, upper right corner,
and tell me if I'm wrong.
If it is, would it tell us anything more about
the dating of the MS?

Here's a site with some beautiful hi-res images of the golden fleece insignia in robes (though 18th century):-

Same idea, but for jewellery (the middle one is from burgundy/holland, 15. Jh):-

Hmmm... if this correspondence is supported by a better images of f79v (it's not *really* clear on the no-ip image, for example), then this could be a really interesting avenue for exploration. It would seem to be as good a VMs image match as any other that's been made to date.

However, I think we'd need a Golden Fleece historian to help us get provisional dating evidence - it wasn't just Rudolph II who liked the idea, the Order of the Golden Fleece was founded on 10th January 1430 by Philip The Good, Duke of Burgundy, as part of his desire to "revive ancient chivalry as he conceived it" (according to everyone's favourite copyright-free 1911 encyclopaedia). :-)


That may (or may not) mean we can give an earliest date for the VMS of 1429/1430... it's hard to say just yet. :-o In the meantime, we can read the many webpages on the Order & make our own guesses:-

This page seems to be the main page for the "Confrerie Amicale de la Toison d'Or", which is now a "non-profit corporation under the laws of the State of Washington in the United States":-

This particular page gives a history of the Order, and links it with Trebizond (circa 1430, Colchis [Jason's destination], was part of the Trebizond Empire of the Comnena family):-

One of the triggers behind the formation of the Order seems (according to this page) have been the rout of the Burgundian army in 1396, who were trying to drive Turkish troops out of Hungary: the Dukes of Burgundy, presiding over a weakened and geographically fragmented nation, needed some kind of "propaganda win" to unite its disparate peoples together, and a new order (based loosely on England's Garter) based on chivalry and allegiance to the crown was initiated:-

Cheers, .....Nick Pelling.....

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