Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Bute Collection of Decorated Renaissance Stove-Hoods at Cardiff Castle

John Crichton-Stuart, 3rd Marquess of Bute (1847-1900) devoted his life to the culinary arts.* He insisted that a sine qua non of civilised life was having access to cooking facilities in every room of a gentleman's house (or in his case a castle), so that one need not disturb the rest of the household should one be seized in the middle of the night by a craving for a caramelised onion tart. As part of this enthusiasm, he furnished Cardiff Castle with these ornately-decorated fume-extractor stove hoods, brought back from his grand tours of Europe.

The majority of the hoods hail from Catalonia, Provence and Liguria.

In later life, Lord Bute became inspired by the Celtic cultural revival movement. While others organised the first Eistenfodd and created an elaborate though largely fictitious history for this flag-bearing cultural event, or reprinted the Mabinogion in comic-book form, Bute convinced himself that a rich history of Welsh cuisine had been brutally suppressed by the incursions of the Plantagenet kings, and set about reinventing recipes not cooked since the days of Owain Glendwr. His experiments proved that leeks were not just items of personal adornment, but could be cooked and eaten. However, the expenses of his research squandered the Bute fortune, and his children were reduced to playing with crude improvised toys.
Join us on Unusual Museums of the World next week, when we visit the Open-Air Gas-Light Collection in the Tiergarten, Berlin!

* Insert jokes here about "Consuming passion", if you must.

7 comments:

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Bute convinced himself that a rich history of Welsh cuisine had been brutally suppressed by the incursions of the Plantagenet kings

Poor deluded Bute never figured out that the collapse of Welsh cuisine was precipitated by the extinction of the afanc, due to overhunting(fishing?).

Substance McGravitas said...

devoted his life to the culinary arts

Ingredient for JanusNode then.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Poor deluded Bute never figured out that the collapse of Welsh cuisine was precipitated by the extinction of the afanc, due to overhunting(fishing?).

What about those Welsh Rabbits I 'ear about?
~

Another Kiwi said...

Shouldn't that be "I hared about"? Grammer is the lifesblood of this hare civilisation, dude.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

What about those Welsh Rabbits I 'ear about?

Tell me 'bout the Welsh Rabbits, George!

M. Bouffant said...

Open-Air Gas-Light Collection in the Tiergarten, Berlin!

L. A. is Berlin's sister city, but at least we have electricity here.

Chris Burden, Urban Light, 2008 (detail), sculpture, (two-hundred-and-two) restored cast iron antique street lamps, 320 1/2 x 686 1/2 x 704 1/2 in. (814.07 x 1743.71 x 1789.43 cm), The Gordon Family Foundation's gift to "Transformation: The LACMA Campaign."

Detail at top of this page.

Smut Clyde said...

Tell me 'bout the Welsh Rabbits, George!

They were also over-exploited once people discovered that they could be distilled into whisky.
This is all extensively documented in Dram of the Rarebit Fiend.