Sunday, 16 August 2020

mendicant marks

Previously we have encountered the glyphs left by the hobos, vagabonds and other members of the travelling community as coded guidance (see here), but it was not until this discovery by our faithful antiquarian that we had seen a map made by and for the community in this ethnographic study of Kent that included a chart and key in circulation from 1870. The map was was rendered by a local screever or sidewalk-chalk artist who would normally be consigned with religious iconography and whom captioned figures with such names as “¾ Sarah.” See more at the links above for a glimpse into this world of cunning and survival.