She's Barbara Allen, or She's Kytte from the Middle Ages

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Byline: Kim Becker Daily Herald Staff Writer

Barbara Allen of Warrenville is a noble woman from the Middle Ages. At least, part of her lives in the 14th century.

Allen, 26, portrays Kytte Wynpeny as part of a historical re-enactment group called Society for Creative Anachronism.

"I started re-enacting history in college at Western Illinois University," Allen said.

"I belonged to a service organization, and at the end of one of the meetings one of the new people in the group said she was teaching English country dancing. I thought that sounded cool."

From there, Allen was hooked. Members of the group travel to various festivals to re-enact life in the Middle Ages. Their time frame spans from 500 A.D. to the time of Queen Elizabeth I (1533-1603) - "just before firearms," Allen said.

Allen's character, Kytte Wynpeny, is an actual person that Allen researched. She lived in England at about the time of Richard III.

"I do anywhere from 1311 to 1450," she said. "It's a nice span of time."

Allen said the characters generally are part of the nobility.

"We aren't serfs or anything like that," she said, laughing. "We don't want to get the plague."

In real life, Allen is an apprentice chef at Chicago Hilton & Tower, where she focuses on cooking and historical recipes.

Allen's character likes to cook, too. …