All things Green Man & Jack-in-the-Green

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The Company of the Green Man

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Book of the Month – November

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Our book of the month for November is ” The Pitkin Guide to The Green Man” by Jeremy Harte

It is available via  The Company of the Green Man’s Amazon bookshop using  THIS LINK

If you buy your green man books via our Amazon links you pay nothing extra but a small referral fee may go towards the Company of the Green Man. This helps us to keep our website and membership free for all our members. In fact anything you purchase from Amazon after going through one of the links may be eligible to earn us a small referral fee so please consider doing so whenever you are planning to shop at Amazon.

Historical Jack-in-the-Green – November

Mayday or Jack in the Green possibly by Isaac Cruikshank published by Laurie and Whittle 1795

Each month I publish a  newspaper article that featured the traditional Jack-in-the-Green along with a picture or photograph from the archive. Each of these articles is a fascinating window into a bygone era. For more information about the Jack in the Green both current and historical visit our main website at: www.thecompanyofthegreenman.co.uk

May 1st 1862: MAY-DAY AND THE SWEEPS

Yesterday there was scarcely any room in London for that ingenious class of persons who, under the general designation of “Sweeps,” contrive to make a holiday of the first of May, and to levy contributions on the public. Chimney sweeping by machinery was a sad blow to the festivities of May-day, and although there were yesterday some specimens of Jack-in-the-Green, with his attendant satellites, they were, as a rule, only to be found in retired districts which formed no part of the road to the Great Exhibition, and were but very feeble representatives of the sweeps of bygone years. In the neighbourhood of Brompton and Kensington a few appeared but the thoughts of the people seemed bent on the Exhibition, and the sooty fraternity – always, by the way scrupulously clean on May-day – seemed to meet with very little encouragement. Many foreigners who came into contact with the moveable Jacks-in-the-Green, appeared to be profoundly astonished at the wonderful system by which such apparently lifeless bodies could have had such wonderful activity imparted to them, and upon the principle of Omne ignotum pro magnifico, rewarded to some extent the ladies and gentlemen who politely extended the familiar long-handed spoons, in which they are accustomed to receive their favours. Jack is supposed to have three days’ holiday at this time of year, and it might be hoped for his sake, that as to-day and to-morrow will be less exciting days than this has been, he may reap a bountiful harvest before the week has drawn to a close.

The Standard, 2 May 1862, page 3

The picture featured this month is Mayday or Jack in the Green possibly by Isaac Cruikshank published by Laurie and Whittle 1795

Green Man Pubs

The Green Man of Flackwell Heath copyright © The Company of the Green man

The Green Man of Flackwell Heath

The Green Man as a pub name may have a number of sources beyond that of the Green Man of church and folklore, including from the Green Man and Still heraldic arms used by the Distiller’s Company in the seventeenth century. Some pub signs will show the green man as he appears in English traditional sword dances (in green hats). Or as the Wild Man associated with drinking and revelry and usually carrying a club. There is also a strange interconnection between the Green Man and Robin Hood. Indeed some Green Man pubs changed their signs to foresters or Robin Hood from shaggy green men used as a symbol of the Distillers’ company in the 17th century. Apparently there are no pubs in Robin’s own county of Nottinghamshire named the Green Man but there are many Robin Hoods.

It also seems that some pubs are changing their signs back from images of Robin to that of the traditional Green Man himself.

One of The Company of the Green Man’s projects is to create a comprehensive list of current and historical  Green Man public houses throughout the United Kingdom. The current listing can be found here : http://freespace.virgin.net/polter.geist/greenman_page0007.htm if anybody know of any pubs missing from the list we would love to hear from you via the contact tab above.

Call for contributions: e-newsletter 11

e-newsletter 11

Our next e-newsletter (number 11 December 2014) will be published on 1st December 2014. Any and all contributions from any of our members would be gratefully received. The deadline for contributions is November 15th. Please contact me via the “contact us” tab above.

Our e-newsletter is published twice a year (June & December) and is free to download for all our members. To join The Company of the Green Man (it’s completely free) please use the ‘Join us’ link above or use THIS LINK

For more information about The Company of the Green Man please visit our main website www.thecompanyofthegreenman.co.uk

Newsletter Archive

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The Company of the Green Man newsletter archive is now well and truly live!

As well as downloadable copies of all the e-newsletters produced by myself over the last five years (our e-newsletters are archived after six months) it contains downloadable pdf copies of the original Company of the Green Man newsletters published by my predecessor, the wonderful Ronald Miller between 1998 and 2005.

If you are already a member just click on the “How to access the Newsletter Archive” tab at the top of this page and you can purchase unlimited access to our Newsletter Archive for just £15.95.

If you are not yet a member then you can join up quickly and easily using the “join us” tab above (membership is completely free)

Book of the Month – October

The Green Man

 

Our book of the month for October is  “A Little Book of The Green Man” by Mike Harding

It is available via  The Company of the Green Man’s Amazon bookshop using  THIS LINK

If you buy your green man books via our Amazon links you pay nothing extra but a small referral fee may go towards the Company of the Green Man. This helps us to keep our website and membership free for all our members. In fact anything you purchase from Amazon after going through one of the links may be eligible to earn us a small referral fee so please consider doing so whenever you are planning to shop at Amazon.

Historical Jack-in-the-Green – October

Charles Green - Jack in the Green 1869

Each month I publish a  newspaper article that featured the traditional Jack-in-the-Green along with a picture or photograph from the archive. Each of these articles is a fascinating window into a bygone era. For more information about the Jack in the Green both current and historical visit our main website at: www.thecompanyofthegreenman.co.uk

May 1st 1828: DREADFUL ACCIDENT

About ten o’clock yesterday morning a very frightful accident occurred in the Blackfriars-road. A group of May-day sweeps, decorated with ribbons, accompanied by what is called “Jack in the Green” and drums, were performing their grotesque capers in the road, when suddenly the horses of a Gentleman’s carriage near them started and plunged into the crowd, unfortunately knocking down a little sweep and the man called “Jack in the Green.” The affrighted horses were, almost in a minute after, stopped, but, unhappily, the unfortunate boy was so dreadfully injured by the wheels passing over him, that he died instantly, and was removed into a public-house. The “Jack in the Green” was severely bruised , and being extricated from his drapery, was carried to the Hospital.

The Morning Post, 2 May 1828, page 3.

The picture featured this month is Jack in the Green by Charles Green (1869)

Green Man Sighting – Lincoln Cathedral

Lincolnshire, Lincoln Cathedral Copyright  ©  Sarah Poole

Lincolnshire, Lincoln Cathedral Copyright © Sarah Poole

My thanks to Sarah Poole for sending us these wonderful photographs of Green Men in Lincoln Cathedral, Lincolnshire for our photographic archive. You can view these pictures and hundreds more at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/thecompanyofthegreenman

Copyright for any pictures or videos you send in always remains with the original photographer as does full control over how the pictures are used. I will never use anybody’s images for any commercial use without full written permission. occasionally I get requests to use pictures for books, magazines and these requests are always passed on directly to the copyright holder.

If you wish to add a picture to the gallery just e-mail it to me via the contact tab above (for large collections please contact me first)

Although digital photos are easiest for us to post onto the Gallery we understand that there are many people out there out there whose collections were created in the days of dark rooms or Boots! (as were mine) but fear not! most photo shops (and even Boots) will scan photographs into a digital format for you and burn them onto a disc for you. I am also more than happy to do this for you too for no charge.

Lincolnshire, Lincoln Cathedral Copyright  ©  Sarah Poole

Lincolnshire, Lincoln Cathedral Copyright © Sarah Poole

Historical Jack-in-the-Green – September

May Day by George Cruikshank from Charles Dickens the First of May 1836

May Day by George Cruikshank from Charles Dickens the First of May 1836

Each month we publish a random newspaper article that featured the traditional Jack-in-the-Green. Each of these articles is a magical window into a bygone era. For more information about the Jack in the Green both current and historical visit our main website at: www.thecompanyofthegreenman.co.uk

1st May 1835 MAY-DAY.

There was but a very limited show of sable masqueraders on the 1st instant. The sweeps, in fact, have become too enlightened for such wulgar exhibitions. Jack Scroggins, who is “up and down to every move,” did not let the chance go by, and was out as “grand Serag,” to a tolerably decent set of Carnivalists. He displayed a cocked-hat, bag wig, nankeen decencies, silk stockings, and a dress-coat, with brick-dust varnish to his mug. Mrs. Scroggins was, of course, with him, carrying the ladle, and wore a complete full dress suit of the “good old days of Queen Bess.” Her carroty locks induced many persons to believe she meant to assume the appearance of the virgin Queen. Josh Hudson was “Jack in the Green,” but was little seen save when he poked his sooty bill through the wentilator to receive his reglars of heavy wet. All three complained that their pumps were out of order from the disorderly state of the pavement ; but they forgot all their troubles when seated at the Half Moon in the evening, where there was the customary May-day ball and trimmings. Scroggins on this occasion played his celebrated solo on the salt-box ; and Mrs. Scroggins sung “Had I a heart for falsehood framed,” with a degree of pathos that made poor Josh, who has naturally a feeling heart, blubber like a bull in convulsions. All the elite of Leadenhall were present, and continued to “foot it merrily,” till summoned by the calls of the carcase butchers to their customary duties on market morning. Lord Winchester, although invited, did not attend. It is clear there is “a screw loose” between him and Josh. Old Frank Hobler, his chief secretary, was, however, as usual, among the happiest of the happy, and, as “Billy Waters,” stumped it right jollily upon his timber toe. Being incog., he was only known to the marshalmen who were observable in the maizy throng. Frank being a musical genus [sic], acted as cat-gut scraper for the night, and it was clear had “enough of it,” for he did not mount his perch at the Mansion till one o’clock, and then could scarcely see a hole through London bridge without his glass.

Bell’s Life in London, and Sporting Chronicle, 3 May 1835, page 3.

Book of the Month – September

The Green Man

 

Our book of the month for September is  “The Green Man” by Richard Hayman

It is available via  The Company of the Green Man’s shiny new Amazon bookshop using  THIS LINK

If you buy your green man books via our Amazon links you pay nothing extra but a small referral fee may go towards the Company of the Green Man. This helps us to keep our website and membership free for all our members. In fact anything you purchase from Amazon after going through one of the links may be eligible to earn us a small referral fee so please consider doing so whenever you are planning to shop at Amazon.

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