WELCOME BACK TO THE BLOG TAMARA!!!
Tamara Morgan is a romance writer and unabashed lover of historical reenactments—the more elaborate and geeky the costume requirements, the better. In her quest for modern-day history and intrigue, she has taken fencing classes, forced her child into Highland dancing, and, of course, journeyed annually to the local Renaissance Fair. These feats are matched by a universal love of men in tights, of both the superhero and codpiece variety.
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In Defense of the Codpiece
by Tamara Morgan
There is perhaps no other word in the English language that has such an impact on juvenile sensibilities as “codpiece.” (And believe me—when it comes to juvenile sensibilities, I know what I’m talking about.) I mean, come on. It’s a hard-shelled pouch for a man’s junk. It’s protection and decoration and vanity all rolled into one article of clothing, the human equivalent of a peacock’s feathers, except crafted with an optimistic view of most men’s…prowess.
You can find codpieces sprinkled liberally throughout history, but they really hit it big between 1540 and 1590, when every dude with some cash strapped one on and strutted the streets. And strut they must, because I don’t see how anyone could walk like a normal human being with a giant leather pouch between his legs.
This codpiece, for example, cannot possibly have been worn for comfort. Am I the only one who thinks it looks a little bit like the chestburster from Alien?
And yet…for fifty years this fashion reigned supreme. Can you imagine some of today’s fashion faux pas lasting that long? Bellbottoms were around for all of a decade before being laughed out of stores. Every time I see a skort I curl into a ball and cry. And there’s no way men will still be wearing skinny jeans in 2050 or I will personally see to it that every pair is forcibly removed and burned.
Even more intriguing is the fact that codpieces are still very much a part of our modern lexicon. Athletes wear them. Rock stars wear them. Shakespearean actors and Renaissance fair enthusiasts wear them. I once saw a guy downtown with one on (presumably) just for fun.
And sometimes, authors slip them into their books because they can’t help themselves. (In my own defense, my book is about Shakespearean actors.) Love them or leave them, the codpiece will forever be a part of our human history. Maybe we should all take a day to appreciate the contributions they’ve made to society.
Or, you know, just giggle a little every time someone says the word. I know I will.
The World Is A Stage:
Danger comes packaged in bulging muscles...and a codpiece.Pre-order A Copy: Kindle | Nook | Samhain
Highland Games athlete Michael O'Leary is famous for his ability to charm a woman right out of her pants. Maybe a little too famous. When he’s sidelined with a knee injury, his wingman pounces on the chance to take full advantage of Michael’s idle time.
Trying out for the local adult-themed Shakespearean production seems simple, but there’s a catch. Michael must woo the notoriously demanding lead actress, Rachel Hewitt, thereby freeing his friend to pursue a courtship of Rachel's sister.
Rachel hates the thought of handing over the lead role in her admittedly scandalous troupe to someone so wholly uneducated in the ways of the Great Bard. But she’s in a bind, and the only one who can step up is a man who looks way too good in a codpiece—and knows it.
To add insult to injury, he refuses to take the role until she agrees to take his place in some barbaric warrior race. She’ll do it, but not with a smile. Unfortunately, the hardest part isn’t antagonizing her Scottish foes. It’s resisting the one man who seems determined to line and cue her heart—forever.
Warning: This book’s half-naked Shakespearean actors are not approved or acknowledged by people with actual literary merit. Neither are the dirty limericks.
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