Kaye has a great post about research today, and it was very timely for me since last week I started a new story and realised there was a lot I didn't know about the period.
Anyway, for some odd reason today I gave my hero a codpiece. And the more I thought about it the more I wasn't sure he ought to have one. So I had a bit of a Google and stumbled across this most delicious site, Renaissance Dancewear which kept me enthralled with the history of this intriguing article of manly modesty.
But the bit which totally cracked me up was a snippet from Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales", when apparently men's shirts became shorter thus ensuring all their unmentionables were on public display. I've pasted it in below for your educational pleasure!!!
Alas! some of them show the very boss of the penis and the horrible pushed-out testicles that look like the malady of hernia in the wrapping of their hose, and the buttocks of such persons look like the hinder parts of a she-ape in the full of the moon. And moreover, the hateful proud members that they show by the fantastic fashion of making one leg of their hose white and the other red, make it seem that half of their privy members are flayed. And if it be that they divide their hose in other colours, as white and black, or white and blue, or black and red, and so forth, then it seems, by the variation of colour, that the half of their privy members are corrupted by the fire of Saint Anthony, or by cancer, or by other such misfortune.