Þingas Cnihtas Do Þe We Lufiaþ 1: Hair Restoration

To celebrate finals week, I’m doing a week of memes. That’s right, you get a whole week of these things! This week, I’m parodying Things Boys Do We Love with medieval and Anglo Saxon sarcasm.

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Gingerbread Viking Contest


I want to see your gingerbread Anglo Saxons, Vikings, and Norsemen! To participate in this contest, send me photos of your handiwork via Twitter, Facebook, e-mail (see the “contact“) page at the top, or by replying to this post with a link to your image. The winner will be announced on December 26th. That should give you plenty of time to bake Vikings at your leisure. (This contest will revolve around Christmas since that’s the holiday that I celebrate.) My readers are all noble and honorable, so we’ll trust that the work you send in is indeed your own work. All submissions will be displayed below (I’ll hotlink wherever possible).

ChrissyJaynes_anglosaxon boy EmilyHartmanVikings!
 Chrissy Jaynes Emily Hartman


The the winner will be announced on December 26. The judging committee will consist of me, my mother, my sister, and whatever friends show up that day. The prize will be a package of 10 note cards from the store (Beowulf and Grendel or O SCYTTE…) OR a $20 Cafepress gift certificate. (Sorry I can’t give a more awesome prize; it’s the best that I can afford.)

You do not need to send any personal information with your submission apart from a user name. If the winner wants the notecards, he will need to send me a shipping address. If the winner wants the gift certificate, he need only provide me with his e-mail address (the gift certificate can be used at any Cafepress store; hopefully, you’ll want to use it at Made of Ƿ). Personal information will not be distributed or used in any way save for the shipping of the prize.


All submissions remain the property of the submitter. There is no opportunity for compensation, gain, or royalties from contest submissions (save the winner’s prize). By entering the contest, you consent to have your submission displayed on this page.

More Stuff By Request

It has come to my attention that I should have put the pair of cookies on shirts, “O SCYTTE…” on cards, and both designs on journals. Now both designs are available on everything, and the shirt design has the edge put back on the cookie sheet. For the full list of items available with both these designs, visit the store or see the previous post.

Two New Store Items: Gingerbread Beowulf

I got my act together in time. The Made of Ƿ store now has its first holiday items! Greeting cards and shirts are available in the new holiday section. To make browsing easier, these items will not be cross-posted to men’s shirts/women’s shirts/print items; they will only be in the holiday section. Links to individual items are also included below.


Do a search for “gingerbread Viking” on Google and almost no results will appear. This is clearly a problem, so now Made of Ƿ has its first greeting card. A gingerbread Beowulf and Grendel are side-by-side on a cookie sheet. Grendel’s arm has broken off during the baking process. Clearly, Beowulf didn’t know that you’re supposed to bite the heads off first (thanks to my sister for that line). These cookies are obviously inaccurate since Beowulf faced Grendel unarmed and unarmored, but there’s no better way to render a gingerbread Anglo Saxon.

shirts only

Since this is a non-religious card, the inside is blank so that it can be used for a variety of holiday/celebration purposes. The cards come with envelopes and in various numbers, linked below individually since Cafepress does a poor job of labeling in their system. The cookie sheet in the image originally had an edge on it, but I couldn’t get it to line up properly with the limitations of Cafepress’s print-on-demand settings, so this should be a safer option. The version with the edge is for shirts only. I have not yet received my first printing of this card. Order at your own risk and check the preview images carefully. I’ll post photos when my card arrives; hopefully it will print as expected.

Available on:

oscytte_preview“O scytte…” is probably what Grendel was thinking when Beowulf ripped his arm off. This is the same Grendel cookie as in the other image, but this time, he has a carefully-iced word bubble expressing his frustration. As with the cards, I am still awaiting my printing to arrive, but since I’ve seen plenty of Cafepress’s shirts, I expect that this one will print exactly as expected. I’ll post photos of this shirt when mine arrives.

Available on:

The Louis-Frederick Scale


A note on the artwork: [1]

It’s hard to judge a historical person’s character, and though many agree we ought not to judge, the fact is that we usually do. Whether appropriate or not, we will form opinions on the people we read about. Concerning the crusades, non-scholarly and older books often assume that the people involved were all some of the most awful around. Here, I’m attempting to give the best and the worst of both sides to aid in evaluating the people who come in between. I am listing the Christians first on this scale merely because that is where my studies focus and I have greater familiarity.

It’s dangerous for me to state who is best and worst, particularly since I am not a crusades scholar. I’m using several criteria. There are several aspects that many expected from a good ruler: kindness, generosity to his people, wisdom, and piety (or attention to upholding moral standards of goodness). I’m defining the best men as those who seemed to have these qualities in the greatest number, and I feel justified because these men were renowned as good men in their own time. I’m judging badness by the opposite qualities: cruelty, lack of generosity or love for violence, lack of wisdom or disregard for the advice of those seen to be wise, and disregard for piety from a community who expected leaders to be religious.

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Board Game Reviews: Völuspá

Völuspá is a tile-matching game based on Norse mythology. The summary on Amazon.com says:

In the oldest poem of Norse Mythology, the “Völuspá” tells the story of the endless struggle of powerful gods, dangerous creatures, and forgotten races. Which beings will dominate? In Völuspá the game, the story will unfold differently each time, as a new force rises in dominance! Players take turns playing tiles with twelve different characters and creatures of Norse Mythology, using the power of these tiles to block, capture or intimidate in order to control other tiles and score points. The player who scores the most points by dominating other tiles wins the game. Völuspá…is an easy-to-learn, tile-laying game that features great depth of play for 2 to 5 players.

Völuspá works something like Scrabble, but with matching pictures instead of spelling out words. Characters can earn different numbers of points depending on their face values and row combinations.


This is what our table looked like at the end of the game.

Völuspá doesn’t require knowledge of Norse mythology since gameplay consists of picture matching. The rules initially seemed complicated, but we got the hang of it after finishing our first round, so the learning curve isn’t steep. The longer we played, the more strategy and deviousness we required, and this game takes more thought than it initially seemed it would.

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