FALCONRY AND THE MEDIEVAL WORLD

Falconry is the sport of hunting with a trained bird of prey. It is also the demanding art of training a predatory bird that is by nature wary of people to hunt cooperatively with a human partner. While the sport has a 4,000 - year history, its glory days were indisputably the medieval period. Falconry then was a court sport in England and France, and the most desirable birds were the legal property of the nobility. Paintings from the medieval period show gorgeously attired ladies and gentlemen riding forth for a day of hunting, hooded falcons on their embroidered gloves. While this presentation centers around live birds used in falconry, it is not a flight demonstration but a history-rich look at an ancient sport. Focusing on the medieval period, it explains the characteristics of the birds of prey used, how the sport reflected the lifestyle of the time, and the historical reasons behind falconry's rise and fall.
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