Jul 27, 2015
Summer Beefcake at the Renaissance Faire
The practice gained momentum during the Medieval mania of the 1960s and 1970s, when thousands of hippies, organic food devotees, and Tolkien-philes longed for a cleaner, simpler, more colorful world.
Where gym-toned guys took their shirts off.
When I dated a guy from the Society for Creative Anachronism, they told me that their character could be anyone who could have been in Europe from 500 to 1500 AD. So no Native Americans or Pacific Islanders, but East Asians and sub-Saharan Africans were ok.
Maybe these guys are from Renaissance India.
Renaissance Faires are not popular in Europe: when there's a castle on every hillside, and your house dates from the 16th century, you don't really need to evoke the Renaissance. It's already there.
But there are hundreds in the United States. Some draw as many as 500,000 visitors per year.
And without modern nutrition and bodybuilding techniques, there were few physiques like this around.
But the Renaissance Faires are about the Renaissance we wish existed.
See also: Codpieces