Sunday, 11 December 2011

The Effigy of Sir Roger Todger

In the course of our eventful R.S.A.R. excursion last Friday we happened upon a most remarkable set of church monuments. Set in the curious church of St Balderdash in the irrelevant little Norfolk village of Gene Pool, we were puzzled by the expression on the 'face' of Sir Roger Todger's monument effigy (d1621)

What on earth might have caused the poor chap such apparent distress?


  1. I have it on good authority that Sir Rodger was an early apologist for the twist and pour method of flask tea drinking after an horrendous accident whilst attending the annual Christmas witch hunt. His wife a notorious drunkard and woman of little credit poured his tea carelessly causing the hot brew to scold poor Sit Rodger in his privy parts. A wound that is said to have pained him for the rest of his life and led to his now famous pamphlet... The Gushing Brew Revenged or Beware Young Men of the Sinne of Hot Liqour unreined. In which he likened the untwisting of a flask lid and gentle pouring of the tea within to the movement of the heavenly spheres and their gentle song.

    I humbly suggest this might have some bearing on his expression.

  2. Further to my last comment, an excerpt from Sir Rodger's pamphlet:

    I say again, is not the the unrestrained unleashing of Gods brew sinful to his honor? Is it not like the unschooled utterings of the poor, whose unlearned speeches spread malcontent. Is not the spilling of that goodley liquor akin to a lusty young man waste fully spilling his seed in the night - soiling both his bedsheets and his soul. Doth not the careless broadcasting of Gods Nector dishonour him more than the unreasoned scoldings and vile speeches of a weak husbands wife carelessly pouring forth venom? I say it does and further that the untwisting of a flask lid to limited degrees and the gentle pouring of the hot tea within is in unison with the Hevenly Spheres and the gentle outpouring of their sweete, sweete song.

  3. Dear Tom,

    If Mr. Many Coats thesis be true, then the poor chap may well have suffered from a red-hot todger!

  4. Ragged Society member, the Learned Aunty Gary, believes this to be one of the finest 'screaming monuments' in Britain - although he believes this phrase to be something of a misnomer. It is his contention that in ye olde dayes the apparently contorted expression worn by Sir Rodger would have been an expression of extreme merriment.

    "'Hot' Protestants such as Sir Rodger rejected mirth as a form of sin and would therefore grimace in the most exaggerated manner in order to express their rejection of all such ungodly frippery." explained Aunty. Sir Rodger was, he said, one of most prodigiously happy men in early seventeenth century England, and his contemporaries would have recognised the meaning of this expression for what it was...

    Society members never fail to be amazed at the breadth and depth of Aunty Gary's challenging intellect!

  5. When taking into account the close entymological stem of 'Grin' and 'Sin', one is forced to concur with my learned associate, Aunty Gary.