Nursery Rhymes

Medieval Game Birds

Medieval life and Times

Medieval Game Birds Birds
The people of the Middle Ages consumed some exotic and unusual game birds. The types of game birds included the heron, the crane, the crow, the swan, the stork, the cormorant, and the bittern. These supplied the best tables, especially the first three, which were looked upon as exquisite food, fit for royalty, and were viewed as delicacies. People also ate birds of prey, and only rejected those which fed on carrion. Swans were also much appreciated and viewed as a delicacy.

Young game was avoided owing to the little nourishment it contained and its indigestibility with the exception of young partridges and leverets which appeared at the most sumptuous banquets.

There was a time when they fattened pheasants as they did capons. Plovers were much enjoyed and they were roasted without being drawn, as also were turtle-doves and larks; "for," says an ancient author, "larks only eat small pebbles and sand, doves grains of juniper and scented herbs, and plovers feed on air." At a later period the same honour was conferred on woodcocks.

Thrushes, starlings, blackbirds, quail, and partridges were in equal repute according to the season. Of all the birds used for the table none could be compared to the young cuckoo taken just as it was full fledged.

Medieval Meat

Middle Ages Food - Game Birds
The following fruits were available during the Medieval era, even though many were looked upon with sheer distain, especially by the Upper Classes. The following list of fruits were available during the Medieval times of the Middle Ages:

  • Peacock
  • Heron
  • Crane
  • Crow
  • Swan
  • Stork
  • Cormorant
  • Thrushes
  • Starlings
  • Blackbirds
  • Quail
  • Cuckoo
  • Lark
  • Pheasants
  • Partridges

Many of the above game sound awful to us Modern people but as they were freely available it only made sense for them to be cooked. Remember the Children's Nursery Rhyme of Sing a song of sixpence...

Medieval Life and Times Home
Medieval Food

Privacy Statement

Cookie Policy

2017 Siteseen Ltd