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cene Five
         1584 PANEL

Hariot sails back to England with Amadas and Barlow and lands in Plymouth. His home is in London but he was not born there but in Oxford, where he grew up and later became a graduate of St Mary’s Hall in the town. However at present, as shown, he’s being entertained by the Mayor of Plymouth who is hugely interested in the strange companions who Hariot has brought with him, Manteo and Wanchese, two Indians that he has persuaded to come with him in order that he can learn their language. They will also be used as guides and interpreters on future expeditions. 

Sparke is an interesting character himself whose family have been important businessmen in the port. Developers too, having built New Street in the Barbican area. Note the sign. To its left is shown one of the houses the Sparkes built (still existing and open to the public). John’s claim to fame is that he’s the first Englishman to write about tobacco and he holds his book in his left hand as he, with his guests puff away at pipes of the noxious weed. 

The quartet have met in the Prysten House in St Andrew’s Street (where the panel was stitched in the 1980s)  Also in the room is a ginger cat who keeps the mice population down in the huge building. He’s just spotted one peeping out from the side of the scuttle (the cat was based on a real one living at the house in 1984). 

The fireplace shown in the picture has an interesting history too. An ancestor of Tom Maddock named John Maddock became the treasurer of Plymouth in 1606. He was a rich merchant who married Mary Trelawney, daughter of another well britched trader who was one time Mayor of the town. The alliance of the families was celebrated by their joint coat-of-arms being quartered with two other associate familiar shields carved and painted on this a beautiful wooden mantelpiece in Trelawney’s house in Looe Street. There it remained until after the last war when the house fell into disrepair and it was removed into storage and forgotten until descendant Tom Maddock rediscovered it and persuaded the Council to put it on permanent display for the general public to enjoy. 

The final cameo here is of Raleigh smoking tobacco and his servant dousing him with water thinking he’s on fire!

tapestry photo 1584 scene five

CORN MARIGOLD  Chrysanthemum segetum.  ‘The herbe itselfe drunk, after the coming forth of the bath, of them that have the yellow jaundice, doth in short time make them well coloured’. Gerard.

TOBACCO  Nicotiana tabacum.  The plant that saved the Jamestown colony that John Rolfe  exported to England for smoking and snuff.

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