The Fool

The is Peterkin, England’s top fool.  He tells bawdy jokes, walks on stilts and plays with fire.

(I’m not sure if that’s damage to the negative below his hand or if its the fumes from fire he was chucking around).

The jester was a regular fixture in the English Royal Court and many aristocratic households until the Civil War and the rule of the Puritans who didn’t have time for such fun.  The jester may be a jack of all trades or he might specialise in jokes, juggling, magic or singing funny songs.  He’s certainly not a million miles away from Mr. Punch, whom I posted about here.

Here swallowing fire, Peterkin is called Pete Cooper and won the title of English Heritage Jester in 2006.