Crests showing the Orders of James V:  The Garter, the Thistle, the Golden Fleece of Burgundy and the the Order of St Michael

Crests above the gateway to Linlithgow Palace

Are you fascinated by the medieval world?   Does the chink of chainmail have you reaching for your longbow?   I must admit I’m no specialist, but every now and then something crops up that re-ignites my interest, whether it’s a random place name, a contemporary account of a battle, or the gaunt ruins of a 500-year-old castle.

Some medieval words have fallen out of use, while others are still (relatively) current.  So, if a royal visitor was admiring your crenellations, would you accept their compliments with good grace?   Would you keep clear of a quintain, or take a postern with you on a hunting trip?  Would it bother you if your kirtle caught fire?  Let’s see if you know the meaning of these ancient terms…