With time on your hands…..

……what do you do?

This Covid-19 lockdown has given many of us a lot more time in the home than we can cope with comfortably. I tried to be sensible and straightaway compiled a list of jobs for myself. Jobs that until now I’ve had the excuse of putting off for lack of time. And if I’m being honest, jobs that I’ve put off for lack of inclination/application/motivation – call it what you will. Bottom of my list is cleaning. I really don’t like cleaning (although I do love the result) and will only do it if I can’t get around the house without becoming tangled up in spiderwebs and the mounds of dust I’ve been ignoring become Everestian climbing expeditions for mini-beasts.

Linda has been using her lockdown time very creatively. I had a little bet with myself (which I won!) that it would only take a couple of days for her to knit something topical. And here they are, a couple of little coronaviruses:

Catherine has been using her lockdown time trawling the internet in search of knitterly nuggets for us and writes:

The Victorian Knitting Manuals collection at Internet Archive, digitised by the University of Southampton Library……..

South Korea has been much in the news recently, for the sad reason that it has been cursed with many outbreaks of coronavirus.   But there is another connection between this far-away country and our knitting group.  One Richard Rutt.

Richard Rutt (1925-2011) was an English Roman Catholic priest who spent much of his life serving as an Anglican missionary in South Korea.  In 1954, he went to South Korea as a missionary.  He became an archdeacon in Seoul and by 1968 he was Bishop of Daejeon.  He left Korea in 1974 and by 1979 was a bishop in Leicester.  He became a Roman Catholic in 1994 and was ordained as a Catholic priest in 1995.    He died, aged 87, in 2011.

Rutt was something of an expert on the language, history and society of Korea.   He was also a passionate enthusiast of knitting and his collection of books on the subject was donated by him to the Winchester School of Art at Southampton University.

This collection of 67 volumes is charming and diverse.   It ranges from the severely practical……..” How to knit stockings : this packet contains general rules for knitting stockings, ladies’ ribbed stockings, gentlemen’s knickerbocker stockings, boys stockings” by Miss E Rider,  or the “Book of hats and caps” by M Elliott, to the more esoteric………”How to use Florence knitting silk”,  by Nonotuck Silk Company. 

Richard Rutt is reputed to have knitted his own mitres, but I have been unable to verify this.  He was also reputed to have been one of the last bishops to wear gaiters regularly. 

Please do have a look at this fascinating collection of knitting manuals.  An extra slice of Christine’s scrumptious cake to the first to produce a knitted item from Rutt’s intriguing repertoire!

His knitting manual collection can be consulted at:  https://archive.org/details/victorianknittingmanuals

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