Have you heard of the Fowler Brotherhood? Also known as the Shooting Fraternity, it was founded at the turn of the 14th century to train Kraków’s burghers to protect their city from invaders and maintain city walls.
Members tested their skills with a competition involving shooting a wooden cockerel. The archer who struck the last fragment of the bird was crowned as winner and named the Fowler King.
The Fowler Brotherhood has been running continually ever since and maintains its traditions: every year members elect their king, who is enthroned at a ceremony in June. Clad in their finest robes, the Fowler brothers set off from their home at Celestat and walk to the Rynek Główny, where the new king steps onto a stage erected by the Town Hall Tower where his predecessor hands over his most important insignia: a silver cockerel, a copy of a sculpture originally funded by King Sigismund II August.
The KBF works with the Fowler Brotherhood and the Museum of Kraków on organising the event.