J is for Jesses

Yes, at long last, I’ve resurrected the Alphabet Posts!  I really hated not writing these posts, but it was either write blog posts or books and I opted for books.  Now, however, I have more time and I want to start back where I left off.  My last Alphabet Post was “I” for Island, when I was in St. Thomas.  So my next letter is “J.”

Jesses are a piece of equipment used in falconry, a big pastime during the Middle Ages.  It’s also still practiced today.

619px-Falconry_transmitterA jess is a thin piece of leather that tethers a hawk or falcon in falconry.  The device is slipped around what would be the bird’s ankle and tightened.  The purpose is to keep the bird from straying or hunting what it shouldn’t.





They also allow the falconer to train the bird while perched on his/her glove.800px-Parabuteo_unicinctus_-falconry_show-8a






One use of jesses that I remember vividly is in the movie Ladyhawke, at the end when Isabeau gives her jesses back to the Bishop because the curse has been broken and she is no longer bound to be a hawk.


That is one of my favorite romantic movies, and even better, it’s set in the Middle Ages!

Thanks so much for coming by to visit the letter “J” this week.  Hope you’ll return for “K” next week!


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5 Responses to J is for Jesses

  1. I never knew what those things were called, but yeah, loved that picture you shared. One of the best scenes in the movie. 🙂


  2. melissakeir says:

    Great post! I loved Ladyhawke! What a good movie! I’m interested in working with Falcons but I’ve not heard of anyone local who does it. Now you have me interested again! 🙂


  3. Great post! And Ladyhawke is a great movie. Tweeted.


  4. lizaoconnor says:

    You and I seem to be on the same trek. I’ll be creating more Victorian bits as well now that I have more time. Or theoretically I think I should have more time.


  5. I loved the movie Ladyhawke and never knew what these were called! Thanks for the education and Happy Friday!


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