Nestled in the valleys of the picturesque barony of Snordwich sits Plumville, a little village overlooked by a grand manor house called Plumbob Hall.
The lord of the manor is John Cecil, Third Baron Snordwich. This morning he is in his chamber catching up on his correspondence.
Snordwich is a cheerful man who values friendship and loyalty. He is never without his faithful attendants, Filbert Perroy and John Postel.
Snordwich’s wife Rohesia is walking in the gardens with her companion, Dame Joan Ros.
Lady Snordwich wishes to hear some music, so Joan fetches the household musician Adam to entertain them.
Joan’s husband Sir Thomas Ros is Snordwich’s marshal. He and the groom Ralf are in the courtyard tending to the horses.
The Ros’s relationship is tempestuous. Joan is a lady of great wit and passion, but a hot temper. Perroy and Postel mock Sir Thomas for the hold she has over him, but he loves his wife too much to care.
In the afternoon, the Cecils and their attendants listen to a sermon in the chapel, delivered by the household chaplain, Henry Wereables.
Meanwhile, the cook Humphrey is busy preparing the evening meal.
Supper is served in the great hall.
The dishes on offer are roast chicken, summer vegetables, and a fine white bread.
Lady Snordwich and Dame Joan make plans for the following day. Rohesia loves the outdoors, and, if the weather is fair, the ladies hope to ride out into the countryside.
After they have eaten, the nobles and gentlemen entertain themselves with games of chess. To her lady’s delight, Joan bests both Postel and Perroy.
The next morning, Humphrey rises before the sun to begin his work for the day.
When Lord Snordwich is busy, he takes breakfast in his chamber, but he prefers to have it in the great hall, where he can be seen by his servants.
Guests are expected later that day. Snordwich and his gentlemen pass the time until their arrival practicing archery. Postel takes instruction from Sir Thomas.
The sky is blue and the weather is mild, so the ladies decide to go ahead with their outing. Ralf readies their horses for them.
The take Adam with them to hear him play.
The company finds a shady spot by the river, where they stop for a picnic of nectar and strawberries.
They arrive back after sunset, to find Snordwich already entertaining his guests. They are his neighbors and dependents, Gilbert Grancourt and Philip Clerinell, who have been invited to Plumbob Hall to form a hunting party.
In Adam’s absence, Postel had been entertaining everyone with songs.
The next morning, Snordwich and the gentlemen set out on their hunt.
They return in the late afternoon, victorious but filthy. While Humphrey cooks the day’s prey, Lord Snordwich takes a bath.
There is enough venison for everyone to eat their fill. It is served alongside cheese drizzled with honey, a raspberry pie, a local nectar called Farmer’s Harvest, and a Yacothian red.
Snordwich and his friends stay up long after the ladies have retired to the great chamber.
Postel drinks too much and falls asleep under the table.