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Friday, 16 January 2015


Falconry is the art of training and the sport of flying falcons, other hawks, and occasionally eagles to hunt game. Often called hawking, it was practiced in Asia as early as the 8th century BC.

Falconry was a favorite pastime of the royals and nobility in the Middle Ages.

Alfred the Great was a keen huntsman and falconer and wrote on the subject.

The Bayeux tapestry depicts King Harold taking a falcon and hounds on his visit to William of Normandy. The pair are known to have hawked together during this meeting.

England’s King John, finding insufficient game for his personal falconry, issued a proclamation in 1209 forbidding the taking of wild fowl by any means.

The Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II was a keen fighter, hunter and exerciser and was especially adept at falconry. He wrote a manual On the Art of Hunting with Birds, a Falconry and Ornithological Manual, which was both a scientific book about birds and a guide to falconry.

In the Middle Ages gloves were worn only by men of high rank, and they took on great symbolic importance. Their only practical use was in falconry, in which they protected the wrist from the bird's talons.

The phrase, "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush" comes from medieval falconry. It originates from where a bird in the hand (falcon) was valuable and worth far more than two in the bush (the prey).

The first US falconry club, The Peregrine Club, was formed in 1934. It subsequently died out during World War II

Sources Compton's Interactive Encyclopedia © 1998 The Learning Company, Inc,

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