Archive for March, 2012

When I bought the book Illuminated Manuscripts “Medieval Hunting Scenes”, I had no idea that I had just discovered a true treasure, especially one that was so close to my heart.  Throughout life’s journey, I believe that there are signals that are sent out, messages of the sort, sometimes they materialize through people you meet or place you’ve been. It is through these experiences that you notice as I do that something is always familiar in your chosen path.

At times it seems as if life is one big loop of coincidence or what I define in my own words as synchronicity. It wasn’t until I opened its pages and discovered that this book not only contained ancient hunting scenes that reveal trade secrets but it also had hidden text within its pages, a true masterpiece, shared with us by Gabriel Bise. “The Hunting Book” printed in these very pages was written by Gaston Phoebus the Count of Foix-Bearn and his 14th century text is filled with a wealth of knowledge that will ultimately help me on my quest to become an extremely skilled huntsman.    Gaston was more than an accomplished hunter, he and many adventurous men experienced amazing quests and hunts that took them from the South-West of France to Scandinavia spanning over forty years. Upon his return home, he continued to hunt and this inspired him to write his work of art. I am always seeking out knowledge about our sport and finding old manuscripts like these books help me on my lifelong quest. Such rich text so close to my heart is very neat indeed as his Bearn cultural blood also runs through the veins of my sons.

One of my favourite hunting scenes is a painting with hunters waiting until dusk on the forests edge.  When the time is right they let the Spaniel dogs loose for the chase and when their nets and spears are set they catch the hares. This ambush technique is one that I use today except for the fact that I use a rifle rather than a net.  I also take advantage of dusk just as they did because I too can hunt until a half an hour passed sun down; thus offering me the edge on time and allowing me to harvest when the hare is out looking to feed leaving the safety of the lair in the woods as he shoots to the fields. Patience is a virtue indeed.

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