In Tudor times there were few things more disastrous for a British noble than the honour of a home visit from the monarch. Oh no. He’s here again. The man with the week-long pheasant-gorging mass drunken banquet in his eyes.
Attempts were sometimes made to shutter up the windows and simply hide on these occasions. Otherwise the sight of the royal train looming across the horizon, with its legions of cooks, soldiers, jesters, fancy-boys and pantalooned hangers-on was a harbinger of bankruptcy, slaughtered livestock, ruined fields and general devastation of anything within grabbable range.