The Renwick Cockatrice

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4 Responses

  1. Carl Sowerby says:

    the big stick
    I like this little tale – especially the ending “Maybe John just did fight a big bat with his stick.”

  2. Mauro says:

    Renwick Cockatrice
    I haven’t even been able to find a proper date for the Renwick Cockatrice or more correctly crack-a-christ). Some source say 1733, others 1620. Given the vast number of basilisk cases all over Europe in the first half of the XVII century (Rome, Prague, Vienna etc) I favor the earlier date.
    A very interesting part of the story is the fact that the Tallantire family was given exemption from tithes following this feat. If I remember correctly since 1530, after the Abolition of Monasteries, tithes had to be paid directly to the Crown. If the Tallantires obtained their exemption after this date there should be some trace of the feat. Unless, of course, it went conveniently lost during the Civil War…
    A popular line, though, gives the date as "during James I reign" (1603-1625), which will of course confirm the earlier date.

  3. esmeraldamac says:

    Re: The Renwick Cockatrice
    I’m with Mauro – the story’s got to be of an earlier date than the one usually cited. The Church of England, oddly enough, states that the event took place in 1610, but I don’t know if they have reason to be sure about that.

    And as you say, it’s got to pre-date the Civil War because of the Tallentire tithes.

  4. What is the source for the 1733 date, the name of the slayer and the rowan branch? All I can find is William Hutchinsons History of Cumberland ( which gives a 1610 date and no further details

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