It was the early days of the graphic novel
October 18, 2017 9:07 PM   Subscribe

The Bayeux Tapestry - all of it, from start to finish. (SLYT)
posted by 445supermag (10 comments total) 38 users marked this as a favorite
This is great! So worth the 20 or so minutes to see the whole thing and not just the bits a history TV show wants to show you.

The animations are quite fun, and the sound effects are fun too and add to the story.
posted by freethefeet at 12:24 AM on October 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

The tapestry is an absolute must-see if you're anywhere within reach. It's genuinely exciting to follow it along, the action is GRIPPING and the details are very engaging. It really comes across like a graphic novel, Very Tarantinoesque I thought. Nevermind how amazing it is as a piece of work. (You can even get locally made embroidery kits to reproduce sections in the proper colours with the correct stitches)
posted by runincircles at 3:59 AM on October 19, 2017 [5 favorites]

Oh! This is fantastic, thanks so much for posting. The narration and sporadic animation is spectacular, "I got me a blue-green pig! What did you get?" -beat- "Hoop!" - just glorious. And educational too!
posted by freya_lamb at 5:31 AM on October 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

What a great find! I really enjoyed the storytelling, especially as I've never seen the tapestry (or any of the reproductions) in person.
posted by Liesl at 7:20 AM on October 19, 2017

I took one look at the comments and said to myself, "20 or so minutes? Screw that, but I'll just take a quick look to see what the fuss is about." Reader, I watched it. The whole thing. And you should do the same if you have any interest at all; history + jokes = a good time had by all! A couple of quibbles: I hate his use of X-Treme Classical pronunciation for the Latin, with v as w; not only had nobody talked like that for a millennium or so, but it leads to absurdities like "Uital" for Vitalis/Vidal. And if you're talking about running horses, you should surely say "precursor," not "predecessor." But never mind that, it's great!

The HIC EST WADARD thing made me do some googling, and I turned up this interesting article (pdf) by Stephen D. White, "Hic est Wadard: Vassal of Odo of Bayeux or Miles and Frater of St Augustine's, Canterbury?" (Reading Medieval Studies XL [2014]); he disputes the usual assumption (shared by the video) that the tapestry was commissioned by Odo, and concludes:
The Bayeux Embroidery's inclusion of so many images of English and Norman fratres of St Augustine's demonstrates that the members of this religious community 'consistently played a more directive role in determining [the embroidery's] meaning than previous scholarship has allowed for'. In fact, it shows that in all likelihood, the community created the Embroidery for its own purposes and without reference to the wishes of Odo of Bayeux or anyone or anyone else about how to construct a pictorial narrative of the conquest or what people to include in it. With the Bishop out of the picture as the Bayeux Embroidery's patron, one can also dispense with the unsubstantiated theory that though made at St Augustine's, it was shown at an unspecified baronial hall or halls to lay audiences consisting largely if not exclusively of Normans. The obvious alternative is that the monks made it for display at their own house. There, in the presence of members of the community, even obscure figures on the Embroidery such as Wadard would have been recognized, even after their deaths, and prayed for by name as brothers of the monks of St Augustine's.
posted by languagehat at 8:43 AM on October 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

Is this not the great Youtuber Lindybeige doing the voice over? Seems like he should get some credit here.
posted by charlesminus at 10:31 AM on October 19, 2017

I second the recommendation to see the tapestry in person if you get the chance. The display setup is kind of weird; first they have you spend 30+ minutes visiting a replica of the tapestry, then you go into the other room and see the real thing. But it works. Seeing it twice sets you up to appreciate it more the second time. Also there's a lot of good explanatory material in the exhibit that's worth the time to read.
posted by Nelson at 10:43 AM on October 19, 2017

This is great, thanks for posting it!
posted by LobsterMitten at 7:52 PM on October 19, 2017

Lots of mustaches and lots of pointing, good!
posted by karmachameleon at 8:02 PM on October 19, 2017

We took the kids to France when they were 8 and 10, and seeing the Bayeux Tapestry was one of the few things on the trip that was very distinctly a Me Thing, because I'm the history nerd.

They have an audio tour which is amazing, and they have a separate audio tour specifically for kids. I still expected that my kids would zip through the whole thing and be waiting for us at the end, because it was toward the end of our whole trip and they were castled-and-churched-and museumed out by that point.

But to my surprise they were absolutely mesmerized. I don't know what was contained in the audio tour for the kids, but it was definitely presented differently, because sometimes they stopped in different places, or skipped ahead of the adults to something else, but we all ended up at the end of the tapestry at the same time and then they insisted we buy this pretty great graphic-novel version of the tapestry in the gift shop.

A++ would do again. Definitely regret not buying an embroidery kit for myself, although they are available online (and given the timing of our trip, any kit I bought would probably still be in its original packaging waiting for me to "get around to it").
posted by padraigin at 9:08 PM on October 19, 2017 [2 favorites]

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