From the playing field to the battlefield
No one Oldenzale had even a single duchess in his pocket—let alone eighty—and the winners didn’t accept it. “The result was, of course, turning the playing field into a battlefield,” says van der Veen. “Balls were flying through the air, and sticks ran down the backs of the participants at breakneck speed until they were smashed to pieces.”
Unfortunately, it was not explained whether it was the sticks or the back that broke. In any case, Oldenzal fell hopelessly at this meeting as well. She even endured the utter humiliation of losing her flag, “a fair pendulum of dark red silk” with the Oldenzaal emblem in the middle.
The men of Utmarsum returned to their homes and were greeted by their wives and daughters with cheers. The swinging feather became an honorary trophy in the house of Mayor Cramer and was then flown around town for every festive occasion. To Oldensal’s dismay, of course, this was a yearly reminder of that unpleasant day.
In 1894 Oldensal offered 200 guilders to take back the flag, but this offer was turned down. In 1930 the flag suddenly disappeared, as it suddenly appeared in the Rijksmuseum in Enschede. Ootmarsum didn’t like that, of course. Come back with this beautiful dark red silk roller feather and instantly!
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