"Fie, fie, for shame!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

A bit of medieval Christmas joy..... Henry VI was not impressed with us Leicester lasses. ......

King Henry VI spent the Christmas of 1459 at Leicester Castle. The most extravagant displays of excess during the holiday season took place during the seemingly endless rounds of banquets, balls and sporting events staged to entertain the throngs of guests and on-lookers throughout the Twelve Days of Christmas. This was the court at its most visible - commoners could catch an all-too-rare glimpse of the royal family as they processed to the tournament grounds in their finest fur-lined attire. If they were lucky, the poor could also dine as kings - or least on scraps from the king's great table.Not only were as many as 24 courses offered at each banquet, but it was expected that the royal kitchens would cook far more than needed for these grand feasts - not only to impress the company, but for the express purpose of feeding the needy when the night's merriment had drawn to a close.

In turn, the town folk frequently favored the court with glad tidings of their own. Carolers, jugglers, mummers, magicians, actors, musicians, poets and bards would throng the halls and add their talents to the evening's entertainment. Usually the court found such past times highly amusing, but not always. The prudish Henry VI was downright furious when a group of local lasses, hired by a mischievous young lord, bared their bosoms and proceeded to dance provocatively before the king and his men. "Fie, fie, for shame!" were Henry's parting shots as he dashed to his privy chambers.