Saturday, 13 October 2012

Oyez Oyez Oyez!

Today is the 60th National Championship for ... who'd have guessed? ... Town Criers! As it's in Hastings we went along.

We learned a little about the history. In the Middle Ages, town criers were the main means of news communication, and were protected by law. Obvivously sometimes the news they proclaimed wasn't welcome - more taxes perhaps - so assaulting a town crier was considered treason!

The bell and the starting cry of "Oyez oyez oyez" was of course to attract attention, and Oyez means "listen".

We're off to see who won later - but you can hear a sample from a previous year thanks to youtube:


joy said...

I wonder if our very own Warminster town cryer was there, all in red?
There certainly seems to be plenty going on in Hastings, if you ever get to see the All Stars cheerleaders look out for my friends, the Townsend sisters.

Goblinf said...

I thought oyez was a bastardization of 'hear ye'.
like newspaper sellers, 'argle-argle' means evening standard?

Heather Leavers said...

oyez = hear ye = listen, you're right of course.

Joy, I just checked the list. There were 24, but not yours :-(