Really good blog on medieval gender and sexuality – and I do love the queer deer.

Jeanne de Montbaston

IMG_3348 Christmas cards, available at the Fitzwilliam Museum Shop. Image from Cambridge, Fitzwilliam MS 254, f. 10r (detail).

Browsing in the Fitzwilliam Museum shop last week, I found this image in the selection of upmarket Christmas cards. It’s charmingly medieval and vaguely reindeer-like, and no one else seemed to think it was out of place in the nice display of highbrow Christmassy gear. But I’d like to believe that the sinister cult responsible for the rainbow over Dublin last May was in on this one, because these, as you see from the matching masculine antlers, are queer deer.

Let me explain. Way back in the summer, I went to the EEBS conference in Oxford, where Kathleen Tonry showed parts of the illuminated manuscript now Oxford, Bodleian Library MS Douce 335. It features a pair of be-antlered deer who seemed to be whispering intimate secrets to each other as a hunter hidden in the bushes peeked at them like a…

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