Short for Geological - meaning to do with Rocks
To do with Architecture - i.e. designing and building buildings
Fungi means Fungus like mushrooms and toadstools.
-phile means a someone who loves something.
A Fungiphile is a loveer of mushrooms. Particularly poisonous ones.
Amanita is a seventeen-hundred year old Geo-architectural Fungiphile and harpsichordist.
Throughout her long life Amanita travelled widely in all the known lands of the globe (and some unknown ones).
Along the way she recorded the interesting stories of people she met.
One of those people was Wulfbertie. Amanita met Wulfbertie when he was an old man living in the Palace at King's Holm, Glewcaster. He remembered all the events of his youth with crystal clarity and Amanita wrote them down for posterity.
Wulfbertie also told Amanita how he came to be in King's Holm Palace and a number of other stories. One of them involves a Viking ship and strange new lands in the far west of the ocean where the locals wore great headresses made of feathers. Another involves the world's largest catapult and the unbreachable walls of El Dorado. Those, however, are for another day. This Website is about Wulfbertie's time with the Monks of Glewcaster Abbey.
Amanita was not born with that name. She was born with the name Alungunia Porkiflex. But Alungunia Porkiflex is an ugly name so on her seventeenth birthday Amanita set out to earn herself a new one.
It only took Amanita twenty-four years to earn a new surname. It was while she was travelling at the speed of sound through the Gobi Desert on a sled pulled by her seventeen pet Lemurs. The Gobi desert is a desert in Outer Mongolia. It is not a cake which talks too much. That would be a Gobby Dessert.
As she executed a hand-brake turn on a particularly slidey sand dune, Amanita caught a glimpse from the corner of her eye of a glimmering yellow-green stone thrown up from the carbon-tungsten blades of her sled-runners. With a fine eye for gem-stones and an encyclopaedic knowledge of geology, Amanita immediately yelled "Un-Mush" to stop her Lemurs. Within minutes she had uncovered the tip of a huge seam of beautiful green crystals. That seam is now the site of the "Mongolian Monster Mine".
Despite the vast wealth at her fingertips, Amanita felt no greed. Instead, collecting merely a few pieces from which to make a chess set, she rode on to the nearest village where she was planning to spend the night and teach the villagers croquet.
In the village, all the families where hungry and poor. They had been robbed by an evil bandit, of whom Amanita would soon come to know more. It is enough to say that the Mongols knew him merely as Kankonis Khan the Kruel.Having heard of the villagers plight, Amanita informed the Village Mother (the most Elderly of the Elders and consequently the most wise) about the green gems. While the Village Mother sent men to dig up the jewels, Amanita taught the children of the village to play a magical tune on the Harpsichord wihch could send any warrior to sleep within minutes.
The Village Mother spent the vast profits from the jewel mine on giving a harpsichord to each child. When Kankonis Khan the Kruel next attacked the village they played the magic tune and his entire army was sent to sleep. The village remained safe. Kankonis Khan was furious and swore lifelong vengence on Amanita before fleeing into the sunset in the west.
In thanks for Amanita's gifts, the Village Mother summoned all the villagers and held an ancient ceremony. During the ceremony, Amanita was officially renamed Peridot - which, of course, is the name of the green gem-stone for which the village is now famous.
The second part of her surname appeared during her return journey from the far east.
Passing briefly through Constantinople on a felucca which she had stolen from the ShahenShah of Madras, Amanita happened to find herself talking to the cleverest man in the world.
The cleverest man was called Finn Festoon. He was so intelligent that he was known to have carved stone into the shapes of trees and fruit and flowers using nothing more than argument and the pure power of thought. Beautiful stone carvings, often found around the doorways of old buildings are consequently now named after him.
Amanita met Finn while she was parking her felucca in a tight spot with a neat four point turn. He was lost and trying to find a barber.
Amanita is a generous and talented stylist. She consequently offered her services and while she adjusted Finn's normal bowl-cut into a style which formed the fashion statement of the year, they played six concurrent games of mental chess and three of the Royal Game of Ur (a board-game so ancient and difficult that no-one else has ever mastered its complexities). As each game resulted in a perfect draw, Finn and Amanita each decided they had finally met their match and arranged to marry immediately.
After a lavish ceremony in which all the guests wore purple (Amanita's favourite colour) and ate dragon fruit (of which Finn was fond), the happy couple departed together on Amanita's felucca for the mystical isles of Atlantis where they spend a happy honeymoon.
Unfortunately, on the return journey, the couple were attacked by a huge black ship which was hiding behind a striking granite peninsula on the coast of Sardinia. Finn attempted to convince the pirates to mend their ways and take up the dragon fruit import/export trade using unanswerably excellent and irrefutable logic. However, just as the enemy crew were agreeing to sign up, Finn was treacherously grabbed from behind and thrown into the sea where he was swallowed by the ravenous sea monster Charybdis.
The murderer turned out to be none other than the heartless villain Kaptain Kankonio the Kruel. Seeing him, Amanita picked up a french baguette she found lying around on deck and bashed Charybdis on the nose. Charybdis immediately leapt up and began devouring the black ship. Amanita used the distraction to escape by leaning hard into the wind and tacking to starboard. As she rounded the headland Amanita looked back to see Kankonio fleeing the scene on the back of a hammerhead shark while his crew were swallowed by the sea monster Charybdis.
Amanita added Finn's surname to hers in memory of him. She remembers him still.
Amanita was still not satisfied with her name. Her surname had improved but her first name was still Alungunia and it did not suit her. It was ugly and she, herself, is very beautiful.
Her first name was given to her by the Queen of Muscovy in gratitude for saving the entire royal family and the country from an evil plot.
News of Amanita's discovery of sheep had reached Muscovy along the Anchovy Route. The Anchovy Route is a fishier alternative to the Silk Route. Merchants used the Silk Route to bring precious goods to Europe from China. They used the Anchovy Route to bring seafood from Murmansk to Mogadishu. By the time it arrived it was usually off.
The kingdom of Muscovy is very cold and before sheep there was obviously no wool The people consquently had to wear nylon all the time, which was scratchy. The invention of sheep was very popular in Muscovy and the Queen consequently invited Amanita to be awarded the country's highest award - the Muskrat Medal.
Amanita took a break from teaching penguins to fly, to be guest of honour at a celebratory feast. There, as the dishes became ever more exotic she saw a familiar figure in black handing plates of mushrooms on toast to the waiters. It was Kniaz Kankon the Kruel and he was making sure the plates were placed before each of the guests including the Queen and Amanita.
Before anyone tasted the new delicacy, Amanita jumped up and flung the Queen's plate through the air at Kniaz Kankon.
Seeing her he fled. The chef checked the mushrooms and declared them to be highly poisonous. All the guests at the feast would have been killed if Amanita had not warned them.
In thanks the Queen gave Amanita both the Muskrat Medal and a new name. She chose the name of the poisonous toadstools which had so nearly wiped out the entire Royal family - Amanita.
After leaving Muscovy, Amanita Peridot Festoon's adventures have continued for centuries. She has also made heaps of important discoveries and inventions. Where would we be without the pop-up toaster, bobble hats and snow?
One day she may record them. For the moment, however, they must remain in her memory while you hear about Wulfbertie.
|Many of the things Wulfbertie saw in the dark ages are now in the Museum of Gloucester.||Wulfbertie supports Gloucester (Glewcaster) Cathedral|
drawings by Paul Evans.
|The Brothers, Uncles, Beogren and other adults like to read clever stories at Tilebury|
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