Volltext: A history of caricature and grotesque in literature and art

and Art. 
of the hall were foon delegated from the gueits to fuch hired actors, and 
we have reprefentations of them in the illuminations of Anglo-Saxon 
manufcriptsie Among the earlieft arnufements of the Anglo-Saxon table 
were riddles, which in every form prefent fome of the features of the 
comic, and are capable of being made the fource of much laughter. The 
faintly Aldhelm condefcended to write fuch riddles in Latin verfe, which 
were, of courfe, intended for the tables of the clergy. In primitive 
fociety, verfe was the ordinary form of conveying ideas. A large portion 
of the celebrated collection of Anglo-Saxon poetry known as the 
" Exeter Book," confiltsef riddles, and this taiie for riddles has continued 
to exitt down to our own times. But other forms of entertainment, if 
they did not already exiti, were foon introduced. In a curious Latin poem, 
older than the twelfth century, of which fragments only are preferved, 
and have been publiihed under the title of " Ruodlieb," and which 
appears to have been a tranflation of a much earlier German romance, 
we have a curious defcription of the poft-prandial entertainments after 
the dinner ofa great Teutonic chieftain, or king. In the firil place there 
was a grand difiribution of rich prefents, and then were fhown ilrange 
animals, and among the reft tame bears. Thefe bears flood upon their 
hind legs, and performed fome of the offices of a man; and when the 
minilrels (mimi) came in, and played upon their mulical inilruments, thefe 
animals danced to the mufic, and performed all forts of firange tricks. 
Er pariles uffi.    . 
Qui was mllelmnr, ut lwmo, bipedefque gerelmnx. 
Illimi quandofide: dig-iii: tnrtgunt modulantes, 
Illifaltabant, neuma: pedibzxs qlariabant. 
Alterutrum dorjb fe portaluznt rgjidendo, 
Amplexandafe, lufiando dqficiuntfe. 
Then followed dancmg-girls, and exhibitions of other kiudsrf 
" The reader is referred, for Further information on this subject, to my " History 
of Domestic Manners and Sentiments," pp. 33-39. 
1" This Curious Latin poem was printed by Grimm and Schmeller, in their 
Lateinische Gedichte des x. und xi.  p. 129.


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