THE KING OF CRAFTSMEN
THE story is told that many years ago the King of England had all the
the Guild Masters of the various guilds to dinner at the palace.
DURING dinner, a violent argument broke out concerning which craft was
most important, and which craftsman should be known as "King of
Craftsmen". The King ordered silence and once all were quiet, he said,
"There can be only ONE King, and I am he! But I will decide which is
the most important craft, and permit the leader of the guild hall for
that craft to be seated at my table with me and he shall be known as
King of Craftsmen.
HE ordered all of the guild masters to stand on one side of the banquet
hall. Calling them to the throne one at a time, he questioned each,
then sent them to the opposite side of the hall from those who had not
yet been questioned. He ordered his Sgt. at Arms to immediately strike
off the head of any who spoke except in answer to a question from the
THE FIRST craftsman that he spoke with was a carpenter. The King asked
what he made. The carpenter told the King that he made all things of
wood. House, wagons, wheels, looms an so on. The King asked where he
got the wood. The carpenter said that he went to the forest, and cut
down trees with his ax, then brought the logs to his shop where he used
other tools to cut the wood down to size and shape it. The King then
asked where he got his tools, and the carpenter answered that he got
them from the blacksmith.
THE SECOND craftsman was a weaver. The King asked the same questions
that he had asked the carpenter, and got similar answers. When the King
asked the weaver where he got his tools, the weaver said that he got
them from the blacksmith.
THE THIRD craftsman was a potter. When the King questioned him, he
admitted that he too got his tools from the blacksmith.
BY this time, the King had noticed the trend. So he questioned all of
the craftsmen EXCEPT for the blacksmith. Each answered that yes, he got
his tools from the blacksmith.
FINALLY, the King called the blacksmith to the throne. When he asked
the blacksmith where he got His tools, the blacksmith answered that he
made them himself, for no one else could make tools for the working of
AT that point, the King called all of the Guild Masters back to the
HE announced that he had made his decision. Since the blacksmith was
the only craftsman who did not have to obtain his tools from some one
else, but made them for himself, that henceforth and forever more, the
Blacksmith would be known as the King of Craftsmen and would be the ONLY
craftsman permitted to wear a fringe upon his work apron.
"FOR BY HAMMER AND HAND, DO ALL CRAFTS STAND"