Notes and Queries, Number 207, October 15, 1853
Author: Various
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Transcriber's note: A few typographical errors have been corrected: they are listed at the end of the text.

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"When found, make a note of."—CAPTAIN CUTTLE.

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No. 207.] SATURDAY, OCTOBER 15. 1853. [Price Fourpence. Stamped Edition 5d.

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NOTES:— Page

Notes on Midland County Minstrelsy, by C. Clifton Barry 357 Comet Superstitions in 1853 358 The Old English Word "Belike" 358 Druses, by. T. J. Buckton 360 FOLK LORE:—Legends of the County Clare 360 Shakspeare Correspondence, by Thomas Keightley, &c. 361 Death on the Fingers 362

MINOR NOTES:—On a "Custom of y^e Englyshe"—Epitaph at Crayford—The Font at Islip—"As good as a Play" 363


Lovett of Astwell 363 Oaths 364 The Electric Telegraph 364

MINOR QUERIES:—Queries relating to the Porter Family—Lord Ball of Bagshot—Marcarnes—The Claymore—Sir William Chester, Kt.—Canning on the Treaty of 1824 between the Netherlands and Great Britain—Ireland a bastinadoed Elephant—Memorial Lines by Thomas Aquinas—"Johnson's turgid style"—Meaning of "Lane," &c.—Theobald le Botiller—William, fifth Lord Harrington—Singular Discovery of a Cannon-ball—Scottish Castles—Sneezing— Spenser's "Fairy Queen"—Poema del Cid—The Brazen Head 364

MINOR QUERIES WITH ANSWERS:—"The Basilics"—Fire at Houlton—Michaelmas Goose 367


Portraits of Hobbes and Letters of Hollar, by S. W. Singer 368 Parochial Libraries, by the Rev. Thos. Corser 369 Battle of Villers en Couche, by H. L. Mansel, B.D., &c. 370 Attainment of Majority, by Russell Gole and Professor De Morgan 371 Similarity of Idea in St. Luke and Juvenal 372

PHOTOGRAPHIC CORRESPONDENCE:—Mr. Sisson's developing Fluid—Dr. Diamond's Process for Albumenized Paper—Mr. Lyte's New Process 373

REPLIES TO MINOR QUERIES:—Derivation of the Word "Island"—"Paetus and Arria"—"That Swinney"—The Six Gates of Troy—Milton's Widow—Boom—"Nugget" not an American Term—Soke Mill—Binometrical Verse—Watch-paper Inscription—Dotinchem—Reversible Names and Words—Detached Church Towers—Bishop Ferrar—"They shot him by the nine stone rig"—Punning Devices—Ashman's Park—"Crowns have their compass," &c.—Ampers and—Throwing Old Shoes for Luck—Ennui 374


Books and Odd Volumes wanted 377 Notices to Correspondents 377 Advertisements 378

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Notes on Midland County Minstrelsy.

It has often occurred to me that the old country folk-songs are as worthy of a niche in your mausoleum as the more prosy lore to which you allot a separate division. Why does not some one write a Minstrelsy of the Midland Counties? There is ample material to work upon, and not yet spoiled by dry-as-dust-ism. It would be vain, perhaps, to emulate the achievements of the Scottish antiquary; but surely something might be done better than the county Garlands, which, with a few honorable exceptions, are sad abortions, mere channels for rhyme-struck editors. There is one peculiarity of the midland songs and ballads which I do not remember to have seen noticed, viz. their singular affinity to those of Scotland, as exhibited in the collections of Scott and Motherwell. I have repeatedly noticed this, even so far south as Gloucestershire. Of the old Staffordshire ballad which appeared in your columns some months ago, I remember to have heard two distinct versions in Warwickshire, all approaching more or less to the Scottish type:

"Hame came our gude man at e'en."

Now whence this curious similarity in the vernacular ideology of districts so remote? Are all the versions from one original, distributed by the wandering minstrels, and in course of time adapted to new localities and dialects? and, if so, whence came the original, from England or Scotland? Here is a nut for DR. RIMBAULT, or some of your other correspondents learned in popular poetry. Another instance also occurs to me. Most of your readers are doubtless familiar with the pretty little ballad of "Lady Anne" in the Border Minstrelsy, which relates so plaintively the murder of the two innocent babes, and the ghostly retribution to the guilty mother. Other versions are given by Kinloch in his Ancient Scottish Ballads, and by Buchan in the Songs of the North, the former laying the scene in London:

"There lived a ladye in London, All alone and alonie, She's gane wi' bairn to the clerk's son, Down by the green-wood side sae bonny."


And the latter across the Atlantic:

"The minister's daughter of New York, Hey with the rose and the Lindie, O, Has fa'en in love wi' her father's clerk, A' by the green burn sidie, O."

A Warwickshire version, on the contrary, places the scene on our own "native leas:"

"There was a lady lived on lea, All alone, alone O, Down the greenwood side went she, Down the greenwood side, O.

"She set her foot all on a thorn[1], Down the greenwood side, O, There she had two babies born, All alone, alone O.

"O she had nothing to lap them in, All alone, alone O, But a white appurn and that was thin, Down the greenwood side, O," &c.

Here there are no less than four versions of the same ballad, each differing materially from the other, but all bearing unmistakeable marks of a common origin. It would be interesting to know the process by which this was managed.


[Footnote 1: In one of the Scottish ballads the same idea is more prettily expressed "leaned until a brier."]

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From the 19th of August to the present time that brilliant comet, which was first seen by M. Klinkerfues, at Goettingen, on the 10th of June last, has been distinctly visible here, and among the ignorant classes its appearance has caused no little alarm. The reason of this we shall briefly explain.

During the past fifty-five years the Maltese have grievously suffered on three different occasions; firstly, by the revolution of 1798, which was followed by the plague in 1813; and lastly, by the cholera in 1837. In these visitations, all of which are in the recollection of the oldest inhabitants, thirty thousand persons are supposed to have perished.

Mindful as these aged people are of these sad bereavements, and declaring as they do that they were all preceded by some "curious signs" in the heavens which foretold their approach, men's minds have become excited, and, reason as one may, still the impression now existing that some fatal harm is shortly to follow will not be removed.

A few of the inhabitants, more terrified than their neighbours, have fancied the comet's tail to be a fiery sword, and therefore predict a general war in Europe, and consequent fall of the Ottoman Empire. But as this statement is evidently erroneous, we still live in great hopes, notwithstanding all previous predictions and "curious signs," that the comet will pass away without bringing in its train any grievous calamity.

By the following extracts, taken from some leading journals of the day, it will be seen that the Maltese are not alone in entertaining a superstitious dread of a comet's appearance. The Americans, Prussians, Spaniards, and Turks come in the same list, which perhaps may be increased by your correspondents:

"The Madrid journals announce that the appearance of the comet has excited great alarm in that city, as it is considered a symptom of divine wrath, and a presage of war, pestilence, and affliction for humanity."—Vide Galignani's Messenger of August 31, 1853.

"The entire appearance (of the comet) is brilliant and dazzling; and while it engrosses the attention and investigation of the scientific, it excites the alarm of the superstitious, who, as in ancient times, regard it as the concomitant of pestilence and the herald of war."—Vide New York correspondence of The Sun, Aug. 24, 1853.

"The splendid comet now visible after sun-set on the western horizon, has attracted the attention of every body here. The public impression is, that this celestial phenomenon is to be considered as a sign of war; and their astrologers, to whom appeal is made for an interpretation, make the most absurd declarations: and I have been laughed at by very intelligent Turks, when I ventured to persuade them that great Nature's laws do not care about troubles here below."—Vide Turkish correspondence of The Herald, Aug. 25, 1853.

"The comet which has lately been visible has served a priest not far from Warsaw with materials for a very curious sermon. After having summoned his congregation together, although it was neither Sunday nor festival, and shown them the comet, he informed them that this was the same star that had appeared to the Magi at the birth of our Saviour, and that it was only visible now in the Russian empire. Its appearance on this occasion was to intimate to the Russian eagle, that the time was now come for it to spread out its wings, and embrace all mankind in one orthodox and sanctifying church. He showed them the star now standing immediately over Constantinople, and explained that the dull light of the nucleus indicated its sorrow at the delay of the Russian army in proceeding to its destination."—Vide Berlin correspondence of The Times.

W. W.


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The word belike, much used by old writers, but now almost obsolete, even among the poor, seems to have been but very imperfectly understood—as far as regards its original meaning and derivation. Most persons understand it to be equivalent, or nearly so, to very likely, in all likelihood, perhaps, or, ironically, forsooth; and in that {359} opinion they are not far wrong. It occurs in this sense in numerous passages in Shakspeare; for instance:

"Some merry mocking lord, belike."—Love's Labour's Lost.

"O then, belike, she was old and gentle."—Henry V.

"Belike, this show imports the argument."—Hamlet.

Such also was Johnson's opinion of the word, for he represents it to be "from like, as by likelihood;" and assigns to it the meanings of "probably, likely, perhaps." However, I venture to say, in opposition to so great an authority, that there is no immediate connexion whatever between the words belike and likely, with the exception of the accidental similarity in the syllable like.

We find three different meanings attached to the same form like in English, viz. like, similis; to like, i. e. to be pleased with; and the present word belike, whose real meaning I propose to explain.

The first is from the A.-S. lic, gelic; Low Germ. lick; Dutch gelyk; Dan. lig (which is said to take its meaning from lic, a corpse, i. e. an essence), which word also forms our English termination -ly, sometimes preserving its old form like; as manly or manlike, Godly or Godlike; A.-S. werlic, Godlic; to which the Teut. adjectival termination lich is analogous.

The second form, to like, i. e. to be pleased with, is quite distinct from the former (though it has been thought akin to it on the ground that simili similis placet); and is derived from the A.-S. lician, which is from lic, or lac, a gift; Low Germ. licon; Dutch lyken.

The third form, the compound term belike (mostly used adverbially) is from the A.-S. licgan, belicgan, which means, to lie by, near, or around; to attend, accompany; Low Germ. and Dutch, liggen; Germ. liegen. In the old German, we have licken, ligin, liggenjacere; and geliggense habere; which last seems to be the exact counterpart of our old English belike; and this it was which first suggested to me what I conceive to be its true meaning. We find the simple and compound words in juxtaposition in Otfridi Evang., lib. i. cap. 23. 110. in vol. i. p. 221. of Schilter's Thes. Teut.:

"Thoh er nu biliban si, Farames thoh thar er si Zi thiu'z nu sar giligge, Thoh er bigraben ligge."

"Etsi vero is (Lazarus) jam mortuus est, Eamus tamen ubi is sit, Quomodo id jam se habeat (quo in statu sint res ejus), Etiamsi jam sepultus jaceat."

On which Schilter remarks:

"Zi thiu'z nu sar giligge quomodo se res habeat, hodie standi verbo utimur,—wie es stehe, zustehe."

We thus see that the radical meaning of the word belike is to lie or be near, to attend; from which it came to express the simple condition, or state of a thing: and it is in this latter sense that the word is used as an adverbial or rather an interjectional expression, when it may be rendered, it may be so, so it is, is it so, &c. Sometimes ironically, sometimes expressing chance, &c.; in the course of time it became superseded by the more modern term perhaps. Instances of similar elliptical expressions are common at the present day, and will readily suggest themselves: the modern please, used for entreaty, is analogous.

It is not a little singular that this account of the word belike enables us to understand a passage in Macbeth, which has been unintelligible to all the commentators and readers of Shakspeare down to the present day. I allude to the following, which stands in my first folio, Act IV. Sc. 3., thus:

" . . . . What I am truly Is thine, and my poor countries, to command: Whither indeed before they heere approach, Old Seyward, with ten thousand warlike men, Already at a point, was setting foorth: Now we'll together, and the chance of goodnesse Be like our warranted quarrel."

Now it is not easy to see why Malcolm should wish that "chance" should "be like," i. e. similar to, their "warranted quarrel;" inasmuch as that quarrel was most unfortunate and disastrous. Chance is either fortunate or unfortunate. The epithet just, which might apply to the quarrel in question, is utterly irreconcilable with chance. Still this sense has pleased the editors, and they have made "of goodnesse" a precatory and interjectional expression. Surely it is far more probable that the poet wrote belike (belicgan, geliggen) as one word, and that the meaning of the passage is simply "May good fortune attend our enterprise." MR. COLLIER'S old corrector passes over this difficulty in silence, doubtless owing to the circumstance that the word was well understood in his time.

I have alluded to the word like as expressive in the English language of three distinct ideas, and in the A.-S. of at least four; is it not possible that these meanings, which, as we find the words used, are undoubtedly widely distinct, having travelled to us by separate channels, may nevertheless have had originally one and the same source? I should be glad to elicit the opinion of some one of your more learned correspondents as to whether the unused Hebrew [Hebrew: YLN] may not be that source.

H. C. K.

—— Rectory, Hereford.

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Comparing the initiatory undertaking or covenant of the Druses, as represented by Col. Churchill in his very important disclosures (Lebanon, ii. 244.), with the original Arabic, and the German translation of Eichhorn (Repertorium fuer Bibl. und Morgenland, lib. xii. 222.), I find that the following additions made by Col. Churchill (or De Sacy, whom he follows) are not in the Arabic, but appear to be glosses or amplifications. For example:

"I put my trust and confidence in our Lord Hakem, the One, the Eternal, without attribute and without number."

"That in serving Him he will serve no other, whether past, present, or to come."

"To the observance of which he sacredly binds himself by the present contract and engagement, should he ever reveal the least portion of it to others."

"The most High, King of Kings, [the creator] of the heaven and the earth."

"Mighty and irresistible [force]."

Col. Churchill, although furnishing the amplest account which has yet appeared of the Druse religion, secretly held under the colour of Mahometanism, has referred very sparingly to the catechisms of this sect, which, being for the especial instruction of the two degrees of monotheists, constitute the most authentic source of accurate knowledge of their faith and practices, and which are to be found in the original Arabic, with a German translation in Eichhorn's Repertorium (xii. 155. 202.). In the same work (xiv. 1., xvii. 27.), Bruns (Kennicott's colleague) has furnished from Abulfaragius a biography of the Hakem; and Adler (xv. 265.) has extracted, from various oriental sources, historical notices of the founder of the Druses.

The subject is peculiarly interesting at the present juncture, as it is probable that the Chinese religious movement, partaking of a peculiar kind of Christianity, may have originated amongst the Druses, who appear from Col. Churchill to have been in expectation of some such movement in India or China in connexion with a re-appearance of the Hakem.



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Legends of the County Clare.How Ussheen (Ossian) visited the Land of "Thiernah Ogieh" (the Country of perpetual Youth).—Once upon a time, when Ussheen was in the full vigour of his youth, it happened that, fatigued with the chace, and separated from his companions, he stretched himself under a tree to rest, and soon fell asleep. "Awaking with a start," he saw a lady, richly clothed and of more than mortal beauty, gazing on him; nor was it long until she made him understand that a warmer feeling than mere curiosity had attracted her; nor was Ussheen long in responding to it. The lady then explained that she was not of mortal birth, and that he who wooed an immortal bride must be prepared to encounter dangers such as would appal the ordinary race of men. Ussheen, without hesitation, declared his readiness to encounter any foe, mortal or immortal, that might be opposed to him in her service. The lady then declared herself to be the queen of "Thiernah Ogieh," and invited him to accompany her thither and share her throne. They then set out on their journey, one in all respects similar to that undertaken by Thomas the Rhymer and the queen of Faerie, and having overcome all obstacles, arrived at "the land of perpetual youth," where all the delights of the terrestrial paradise were thrown open to Ussheen, to be enjoyed with only one restriction. A broad flat stone was pointed out to him in one part of the palace garden, on which he was forbidden to stand, under penalty of the heaviest misfortune. One day, however, finding himself near the fatal stone, the temptation to stand on it became irresistible, and he yielded to it, and immediately found himself in full view of his native land, the existence of which he had forgotten from the moment he had entered the kingdom of Thiernah Ogieh. But alas! how was it changed from that country he had left only a few days since, for "the strong had become weak," and "the brave become cowards," while oppression and violence held undisputed sway through land. Overcome with grief, he hastened to the the queen to beg that he might be restored to his country without delay, that he might endeavour to apply some remedy to its misfortunes. The queen's prophetic skill made her aware of Ussheen's transgression of her commands before he spoke, and she exerted all her persuasive powers to prevail upon him to give up his desire to return to Erin, but in vain. She then asked him how long he supposed he had been absent from his native land, and on his answering "thrice seven days," she amazed him by declaring that three times thrice seven years had elapsed since his arrival at the kingdom of Thiernah Ogieh; and though Time had no power to enter that land, it would immediately assert its dominion over him if he left it. At length she persuaded him to promise that he would return to his country for only one day, and then come back to dwell with her for ever; and she gave him a jet-black horse of surpassing beauty, from whose back she charged him on no account to alight, or at all events not to allow the bridle to fall from his hand. She farther endued him with wisdom and knowledge far surpassing that of men. Having mounted his fairy steed, he soon found himself approaching his former home; and as he journeyed he met a man {361} driving before him a horse, across whose back was thrown a sack of corn: the sack having fallen a little to one side, the man asked Ussheen to assist him in balancing it properly; Ussheen instantly stooped from his horse, and catching the sack in his right hand, gave it such a heave that it fell over on the other side. Annoyed at his mistake, he forgot the injunctions of his bride, and sprung from his horse to lift the sack from the ground, letting the bridle fall from his hand at the same time: instantly the horse struck fire from the ground with his hoofs, and uttering a neigh louder than thunder, vanished; at the same instant his curling locks fell from Ussheen's head, darkness closed over his beaming eyes, the more than mortal strength forsook his limbs, and, a feeble helpless old man, he stretched forth his hands seeking some one to lead him: but the mental gifts bestowed on him by his immortal bride did not leave him, and, though unable to serve his countrymen with his sword, he bestowed upon them the advice and instruction which flowed from wisdom greater than that of mortals.


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On "Run-awayes" in Romeo and Juliet.

"Gallop apace, you fiery-footed steedes, Towards Phoebus' lodging such a wagoner As Phaeton would whip you to the west, And bring in cloudie night immediately. Spred thy close curtaine, Love-performing night, That run-awayes eyes may wincke, and Romeo Leape to these armes, vntalkt of and vnseene."

Your readers will no doubt exclaim, is not this question already settled for ever, if not by MR. SINGER'S substitution of rumourer's, at least by that of R. H. C., viz. rude day's? I must confess that I thought the former so good, when it first appeared in these pages, that nothing more was wanted; yet this is surpassed by the suggestion of R. H. C. As conjectural emendations, they may rank with any that Shakspeare's text has been favoured with; in short, the poet might undoubtedly have written either the one or the other.

But this is not the question. The question is, did he write the passage as it stands in the first folio, which I have copied above? Subsequent consideration has satisfied me that he did. I find the following passage in the Merchant of Venice, Act II. Sc. 6.:

"—— but come at once, For the close night doth play the run-away, And we are staid for at Bassanio's feast."

Is it very difficult to believe that the poet who called the departing night a run-away would apply the same term to the day under similar circumstances?

Surely the first folio is a much more correctly printed book than many of Shakspeare's editors and critics would have us believe.

H. C. K.

—— Rectory, Hereford.

The Word "clamour" in "The Winter's Tale."—MR. KEIGHTLEY complains (Vol viii., p. 241.) that some observations of mine (p. 169.) on the word clamour, in The Winter's Tale, are precisely similar to his own in Vol. vii., p. 615. Had they been so in reality, I presume our Editor would not have inserted them; but I think they contain something farther, suggesting, as they do, the A.-S. origin of the word, and going far to prove that our modern calm, the older clame, the Shakspearian clamour, the more frequent clem, Chaucer's clum, &c., all of them spring from the same source, viz. the A.-S. clam or clom, which means a band, clasp, bandage, chain, prison; from which substantive comes the verb claemian, to clam, to stick or glue together, to bind, to imprison.

If I passed over in silence those points on which MR. KEIGHTLEY and myself agreed, I need scarcely assure him that it was for the sake of brevity, and not from any want of respect to him.

I may remark, by the way, on a conjecture of MR. KEIGHTLEY'S (Vol. vii., p. 615.), that perhaps, in Macbeth, Act V. Sc. 5., Shakspeare might have written "till famine clem thee," and not, as it stands in the first folio, "till famine cling thee," that he is indeed, as he says, "in the region of conjecture:" cling is purely A.-S., as he will find in Bosworth, "Clingan, to wither, pine, to cling or shrink up; marcescere."

H. C. K.

—— Rectory, Hereford.

Three Passages in "Measure for Measure."—H. C. K. has a treacherous memory, or rather, what I believe to be the truth, he, like myself, has not a complete Shakspeare apparatus. COLLIER'S first edition surely cannot be in his library, or he would have known that Warburton, long ago, read seared for feared, and that the same word appears in Lord Ellesmere's copy of the first folio, the correction having been made, as MR. COLLIER remarks, while the sheet was at press. I however assure H. C. K. that I regard his correction as perfectly original. Still I have my doubts if seared be the poet's word, for I have never met it but in connexion with hot iron; and I should be inclined to prefer sear or sere; but this again is always physically dry, and not metaphorically so, and I fear that the true word is not to be recovered.

I cannot consent to go back with H. C. K. to the Anglo-Saxon for a sense of building, which I do not think it ever bore, at least not in our poet's time. His quotation from the "Jewel House," &c. is not to the point, for the context shows that "a building word" is a word or promise that will {362} set me a-building, i. e. writing. After all I see no difficulty in "the all-building law;" it means the law that builds, maintains, and repairs the whole social edifice, and is well suited to Angelo, whose object was to enhance the favour he proposed to grant.

Again, if H. C. K. had looked at COLLIER'S edit., he would have seen that in Act I. Sc. 2., princely is the reading of the second folio, and not a modern conjecture. If he rejects this authority, he must read a little farther on perjury for penury. As to the Italian prenze, I cannot receive it. I very much doubt Shakspeare's knowledge of Italian, and am sure that he would not, if he understood the word, use it as an adjective. MR. COLLIER'S famed corrector reads with Warburton priestly, and substitutes garb for guards, a change which convinces me (if proof were wanting) that he was only a guesser like ourselves, for it is plain, from the previous use of the word living, that guards is the right word.


Shakspeare's Works with a Digest of all the Readings (Vol. viii., pp. 74, 170.).—I fully concur with your correspondent's suggestion, and beg to suggest to MR. HALLIWELL that his splendid monograph edition would be greatly improved if he would undertake the task. As his first volume contains but one play (Tempest), it may not be too late to adopt the suggestion, so that every variation of the text (in the briefest possible form) might be seen at a glance.


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"Isaac saith, I am old, and I know not the day of my death (Gen. xxvii. 2.); no more doth any, though never so young. As soon (saith the proverb) goes the lamb's skin to the market as that of the old sheep; and the Hebrew saying is, There be as many young skulls in Golgotha as old; young men may die (for none have or can make any agreement with the grave, or any covenant with death, Isa. xxviii. 15. 18.), but old men must die. 'Tis the grant statute of heaven (Heb. ix. 27.). Senex quasi seminex, an old man is half dead; yea, now, at fifty years old, we are accounted three parts dead; this lesson we may learn from our fingers' ends, the dimensions whereof demonstrate this to us, beginning at the end of the little finger, representing our childhood, rising up to a little higher at the end of the ring-finger, which betokens our youth; from it to the top of the middle finger, which is the highest point of our elevated hand, and so most aptly represents our middle age, when we come to our [Greek: akme], or height of stature and strength; then begins our declining age, from thence to the end of our forefinger which amounts to a little fall, but from thence to the end of the thumb there is a great fall, to show, when man goes down (in his old age) he falls fast and far, and breaks (as we say) with a witness. Now, if our very fingers' end do read us such a divine lecture of mortality, oh, that we could take it out, and have it perfect (as we say) on our fingers' end, &c.

"To old men death is prae januis, stands before their door, &c. Old men have (pedem in cymba Charonis) one foot in the grave already; and the Greek word [Greek: geron] (an old man) is derived from [Greek: para to eis gen oran], which signifies a looking towards the ground; decrepit age goes stooping and grovelling, as groaning to the grave. It doth not only expect death, but oft solicits it."—Christ. Ness's Compleat History and Mystery of the Old and New Test., fol. Lond. 1690, chap. xii. p. 227.

From The Barren Tree, a sermon on Luke xiii. 7., preached at Paul's Cross, Oct. 26, 1623, by Thos. Adams:

"Our bells ring, our chimneis smoake, our fields rejoice, our children dance, ourselues sing and play, Jovis omnia plena. But when righteousnesse hath sowne and comes to reape, here is no haruest; [Greek: ouk eurisko], I finde none. And as there was neuer lesse wisdome in Greece then in time of the Seven Wise Men, so neuer lesse pietie among vs, then now, when vpon good cause most is expected. When the sunne is brightest the stars be darkest: so the cleerer our light, the more gloomy our life with the deeds of darkness. The Cimerians, that live in a perpetuall mist, though they deny a sunne, are not condemned of impietie; but Anaxogoras, that saw the sunne and yet denied it, is not condemned of ignorance, but of impietie. Former times were like Leah, bleare-eyed, but fruitful; the present, like Rachel, faire, but barren. We give such acclamation to the Gospell, that we quite forget to observe the law. As vpon some solenne festivall, the bells are rung in all steeples, but then the clocks are tyed vp: there is a great vntun'd confusion and clangor, but no man knowes how the time passeth. So in this vniuersall allowance of libertie by the Gospell (which indeed rejoyceth our hearts, had we the grace of sober vsage), the clocks that tel vs how the time passes, Truth and Conscience, that show the bounded vse and decent forme of things, are tyed vp, and cannot be heard. Still Fructum non invenio, I finde no fruits. I am sorry to passe the fig-tree in this plight: but as I finde it, so I must leave it, till the Lord mend it."—Pp. 39, 40., 4to. Lond. 1623.


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Minor Notes.

On a "Custom of y^e Englyshe."—When a more than ordinarily doubtful matter is offered us for credence, we are apt to inquire of the teller if he "sees any green" in our optics, accompanying the query by an elevation of the right eyelid with the forefinger. Now, regarding this merely as a "fast" custom, I marvelled greatly at finding a similar action noted by worthy Master Blunt, as conveying to his mind an analogous meaning. I can scarcely credit its antiquity; but what other meaning can I understand from the episode he {363} relates? He had been trying to pass himself off as a native, but—

"The third day, in the morning, I, prying up and down alone, met a Turke, who, in Italian, told me—Ah! are you an Englishman, and with a kind of malicious posture laying his forefinger under his eye, methought he had the lookes of a designe."—Voyage in the Levant, performed by Mr. Henry Blunt, p. 60.: Lond. 1650.

—a silent, but expressive, "posture," tending to eradicate any previously formed opinion of the verdantness of Mussulmans!



Epitaph at Crayford.—I send the following lines, if you think them worthy an insertion in your Epitaphiana: a friend saw them in the churchyard of Crayford, Kent.

"To the Memory of PETER IZOD, who was thirty-five years clerk of this parish, and always proved himself a pious and mirthful man.

"The life of this clerk was just three score and ten, During half of which time he had sung out Amen. He married when young, like other young men; His wife died one day, so he chaunted Amen. A second he took, she departed,—what then? He married, and buried a third with Amen. Thus his joys and his sorrows were treble, but then His voice was deep bass, as he chaunted Amen. On the horn he could blow as well as most men, But his horn was exalted in blowing Amen. He lost all his wind after threescore and ten, And here with three wives he waits till again The trumpet shall rouse him to sing out Amen."

Tradition reports these verses to have been composed by some curate of the parish.


The Font at Islip.

"In the garden is placed a relic of some interest—the font in which it is said King Edward the Confessor was baptised at Islip. The block of stone in which the basin of immersion is excavated, is unusually massy. It is of an octangular shape, and the outside is adorned by tracery work. The interior diameter of the basin is thirty inches, and the depth twenty. The whole, with the pedestal, which is of a piece with the rest, is five feet high, and bears the following imperfect inscription:

'This sacred Font Saint Edward first receavd, From Womb to Grace, from Grace to Glory went, His virtuous life. To this fayre Isle beqveth'd, Prase ... and to vs but lent. Let this remaine, the Trophies of his Fame, A King baptizd from hence a Saint became.'

"Then is inscribed:

'This Fonte came from the Kings Chapell in Islip.'"—Extracted from the Beauties of England and Wales, title "Oxfordshire," p. 454.

In the gardens at Kiddington there—

"was an old font wherein it is said Edward the Confessor was baptized, being brought thither from an old decayed chapel at Islip (the birth-place of that religious prince), where it had been put up to an indecent use, as well as the chapel."—Extracted from The English Baronets, being a Historical and Genealogical Account of their Families, published 1727.

The Viscounts Montague, and consequently the Brownes of Kiddington, traced their descent from this king through Joan de Beaufort, daughter of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster.

C. B.

"As good as a Play."—I note this very ordinary phrase as having royal origin or, at least, authority. It was a remark of King Charles II., when he revived a practice of his predecessors, and attended the sittings of the House of Lords.

The particular occasion was the debate, then interesting to him, on Lord Roos' Divorce Bill.

W. T. M.

Hong Kong.

* * * * *



It is stated in all the pedigrees of this family which I have seen, that Thomas Lovett, Esq., of Astwell in Northamptonshire, who died in 1542, married for his first wife Elizabeth, daughter (Burke calls her "heir," Extinct Baronetage, p. 110.) of John Boteler, Esq., of Woodhall Watton, in Hertfordshire. The pedigree of the Botelers in Clutterbuck's Hertfordshire (vol. ii. p. 476.) does not notice this marriage, nor is there any distinct allusion to it in the wills of either family. Thomas Lovett's will, dated 20th November, 1542, and proved on the following 19th January, does not contain the name of Boteler. (Testamenta Vetusta, vol. ii. p. 697.) His father Thomas Lovett, indeed, in his will dated 29th October, 7 Henry VII., and proved 28th January, 1492 (Test. Vetust., vol. ii. p. 410.), bequeaths to Isabel Lovett and Margaret, his daughters, "Cl. which John Boteler oweth me," but he refers to no relationship between the families. Again, "John Butteler, Esquier," by his will, dated 7th September, 1513, and proved at Lambeth 11th July, 1515, appoints "his most gracious Maister, Maister Thomas Louett," to be supervisor of his will, and bequeaths to him "a Sauterbook as a poore remembraunce;" but he alludes to no marriage, nor does he mention a daughter Elizabeth. This John Boteler is said by Clutterbuck to have married three wives: 1. Katherine, daughter of Thomas Acton; 2. Margaret, daughter of Henry Belknap, who died 18th August, 1513; 3. Dorothy, daughter of William Tyrrell, Esq., of Gipping in Suffolk: the last-mentioned was the mother of his heir, Sir Philip Boteler, Kt.; but I can nowhere find who was the mother of the son Richard, and the daughters Mary and Joyce mentioned in his will, {364} or of Thomas Lovett's wife. I cannot help fancying that Elizabeth Lovett was his only child by one of his wives, and was perhaps heir to her mother. Can one of your contributors bring forward any authority to confirm or disprove this conjecture? Whilst I am speaking of the Lovett pedigree, I would also advert to two other contradictions in the popular accounts of it. That most inaccurate of books, Betham's Baronetage, vol. v. p. 517., says, Giles Pulton, Esq., of Desborough, married Anne, daughter of Thomas Lovett, Esq., of Astwell: the same author, vol. i. p. 299., calls her Catherine; which is correct? Neither Anne nor Catherine is mentioned in Thomas Lovett the Elder's will (Test. Vetust., vol. ii. p. 410). Again, Betham, Burke, and Bridges (History of Northamptonshire, "Astwell") have rolled out Thomas Lovett into two persons, and in fact have made him appear the son of his second wife Joan Billinge, who was not the ancestress of the Lovetts of Astwell at all. Nor was it possible she could be; for Thomas Lovett, in his will, dated 1492, speaks of her as "Joan, my wife, late the wife of John Hawys, one of the Justices of the Common Pleas." Now this John Hawys was living in 1487, and Lovett's son and heir, Thomas, was seventeen years old in 1492. The abstract of Lovett's will in the Test. Vetust., calling Thomas Lovett the Younger "my son and heir by the said Joan my wife," must therefore be manifestly incorrect. I will not apologise for the minuteness of this account, as I believe the correction of detail in published pedigrees to be one of the most valuable features of "N. & Q.;" but I am almost ashamed of the length of my communication, which I hope some of your readers may throw light upon.


* * * * *


The very remarkable distinction between the manner in which English and Welsh witnesses take the book at the time when they are sworn, has often struck me. An English witness always takes the book with his fingers under, and his thumb at the top of the book. A Welsh witness, on the contrary, takes it with his fingers at the top, and his thumb under the book. How has this singular difference arisen? I am inclined to suggest that originally the oath was taken by merely laying the hand on the top of the book, without kissing it. Lord Coke (3 Inst. 165.) says, "It is called a corporal oath, because he toucheth with his hand some part of the Holy Scripture." And Jacob (L. D., "Oath"), says it is so called "because the witness, when he swears, lays his right hand upon, and toucheth the Holy Evangelists." And Lord Hale (2 H. P. C. 279.) says, "The regular oath, as is allowed by the laws of England, is 'Tactis sacrosanctis Dei Evangeliis'," and in case of a Jew, "Tacto libro legis Mosaicae:" and, if I rightly remember, the oath as administered in the Latin form at Oxford concludes: "Ita te Deus adjuvet, tactis sacrosanctis Christi Evangeliis." In none of these instances does kissing the book appear to be essential. Whereas the present form used in the Courts is, "So help you God, kiss the book;" but still the witness is always required to touch the book with his hand, and he is never permitted to hold the book with his hand in a glove. When then did the practice of kissing the book originate? And how happens it that the Welsh and English take the book in the hand in the different manners I have described?

C. S. G.

* * * * *


Powerful as this extraordinary agent has become, and incalculably useful as its operation is now found to be, it would appear that the principle of the electric telegraph and its modus operandi, almost identically as at present, were known and described upwards of a century ago. On the occasion of a late visit to Robert Baird, Esq., of Auchmeddan, at his residence, Cadder House, near Glasgow, my attention was called by that gentleman to a letter initialed C. M., dated Renfrew, Feb. 15, 1753, and published that year in the Scots Magazine, vol. xv. p. 73., where the writer not only suggests electricity as a medium for conveying messages and signals, but details with singular minuteness the method of opening and maintaining lingual communication between remote points, a method which, with only few improvements, has now been so eminently successful. It is usual to attribute this wonderful discovery to the united labours of Mr. W. F. Cooke and Professor Wheatstone, but has any one acknowledged the contribution of C. M., and can any of the learned correspondents of "N. & Q." inform me who he was?



* * * * *

Minor Queries.

Queries relating to the Porter Family.—Above the inscription on the tablet erected by a devoted friend to the memory of this highly-gifted family in Bristol Cathedral, is a medallion of a portcullis surrounded by the word AGINCOURT, and surmounted by the date 1415.—What connexion is there between Agincourt[2] and the Porter family?


Did Sir R. K. Porter write on account of Sir John Moore's campaign in the Peninsula?—What is the title of the book, and where can it be procured?[3]

Who was Charles Lempriere Porter (who died Feb. 14, 1831, aged thirty-one), mentioned on the Porter tombstone in St. Paul's churchyard at Bristol?—Who was Phoebe, wife of Dr. Porter, who died Feb. 20, 1845, aged seventy-nine, and whose name also occurs on this stone?

Did this family (which is now supposed to be extinct) claim descent from Endymion Porter, the loyal and devoted adherent of King Charles the Martyr?

D. Y. N.

[Footnote 2: It refers to Sir Robert Ker Porter's third great battle-piece, AGINCOURT: which memorable battle took place October 25, 1415. Sir Robert presented it to the city of London, and it is still in the possession of the corporation: it was hung up in the Guildhall a few years since.]

[Footnote 3: In 1808, Sir R. K. Porter accompanied Sir John Moore's expedition to the Peninsula, and attended the campaign throughout, up to the closing catastrophe of the battle of Corunna. On his return to England, he published anonymously, Letters from Portugal and Spain, written during the March of the Troops under Sir John Moore, 1809, 8vo.—ED.]

Lord Ball of Bagshot.—Coryat, in his Crudities, vol. ii. p. 471., edit. 1776, tells us that at St. Gewere, near Ober-Wesel—

"There hangeth an yron collar fastened in the wall, with one linke fit to be put upon a man's neck, without any manner of hurt to the party that weareth it.

"This collar doth every stranger and freshman, the first time that he passeth that way, put upon his neck, which he must weare so long standing till he hath redeemed himself with a competent measure of wine."

Coryat submitted himself to the collar "for novelty sake," and he adds:

"This custome doth carry some kinde of affinity with certain sociable ceremonies that wee have in a place of England, which are performed by that most reuerend Lord Ball of Bagshot, in Hampshire, who doth with many, and indeed more solemne, rites inuest his brothers of his vnhallowed chappell of Basingstone (Basingstoke?) (as all our men of the westerne parts of England do know by deare experience to the smart of their purses), to these merry burgomaisters of Saint Gewere vse to do."

Will any of your readers state whether the custom is remembered in Hampshire, and afford explanation as to the most Rev. Lord Ball? The writers that I have referred to are silent, and I do not find mention of the custom in the pages of Mr. Urban.

J. H. M.

Marcarnes.—In Guillim's Display of Heraldry (6th edit., London, 1724), sect. 2. chap. v. p. 32., occurs the following description of a coat of arms: "Marcarnes, vaire, a pale, sable."

There is no reference to a Heralds' Visitation, or to the locality in which resided the family bearing this name and coat. It is only mentioned as an instance among many others of the pale in heraldry. I have searched many heraldic books, as well as copies of Heralds' Visitations, but cannot find the name elsewhere. Will any herald advise me how to proceed farther in tracing it?

G. R. M.

The Claymore.—What is the original weapon to which belongs the name of claymore (claidh mhor)? Is it the two-handed sword, or the basket-hilted two-edged sword now bearing the appellation? Is the latter kind of sword peculiar to Scotland? They are frequently to be met with in this part of the country. One was found a few years since plunged up to the hilt in the earth on the Cotswold Hills. It was somewhat longer than the Highland broadsword, but exactly similar to a weapon which I have seen, and which belonged to a Lowland Whig gentleman slain at Bothwell Bridge. If these swords be exclusively Scottish, may they not be relics of the unhappy defeat at Worcester?



Sir William Chester, Kt.—It is said of this gentleman in all the Baronetages, that "he was a great benefactor to the city of London in the time of Edward VI., and that he became so strictly religious, that for a considerable time before his death he retired from all business, entered himself a fellow-commoner at Cambridge, lived there some years' and was reputed a learned man." Did he take any degree at Cambridge, and to what college or hall did he belong? Must there not be some records in the University which will yield this information? I observe the "Graduati Cantabrigienses" only commence in 1659 in the printed list; but there must be older lists than this at Cambridge. Collins mentions that he was so conspicuous in his zeal for the Reformed religion, that he ran great risk of his life in Queen Mary's reign, and that one of his servants was burnt in Smithfield. Can any one inform me of his authority for this statement?


Canning on the Treaty of 1824 between the Netherlands and Great Britain.—When and under what circumstances did Canning use the following words?—

"The results of this treaty [of 1824 between England and Holland, to regulate their respective interests in the East Indies] were an admission of the principles of free trade. A line of demarcation was drawn, separating our territories from theirs, and ridding them of their settlements on the Indian continent. All these objects are now attained. We have obtained Sincapore, we have got a free trade, and in return we have given up Bencoolen."

Where are these words to be found, and what is the title of the English paper called by the {366} French Courier du Commerce?—From the Navorscher.

L. D. S.

Ireland a bastinadoed Elephant.—"And Ireland, like a bastinadoed elephant, kneeled to receive her rider." This sentence is ascribed by Lord Byron to the Irish orator Curran. Diligent search through his speeches, as published in the United States, has been unsuccessful in finding it. Can any of your readers "locate it," as we say in the backwoods of America? A bastinado properly is a punishment inflicted by beating the soles of the feet: such a flagellation could not very conveniently be administered to an elephant. The figure, if used by Curran, has about it the character of an elephantine bull.

[Old English W]


Memorial Lines by Thomas Aquinas.

"Thomas Aquinas summed up, in a quaint tetrastic, twelve causes which might found sentences of nullity, of repudiation, or of the two kinds of divorce; to which some other, as monkish as himself, added two more lines, increasing the causes to fourteen, and to these were afterwards added two more. The former are [here transcribed from] the note:

'Error, conditio, votum, cognatio, crimen, Cultus disparitas, vis, ordo, ligamen, honestas, Si sis affinis, si forte coeire nequibis, Si parochi, et duplicis desit praesentia testis, Raptave si mulier, parti nec reddita tutae; Haec facienda vetant connubia, facta retractant.'"—From Essay on Scripture Doctrines of Adultery and Divorce, by H. V. Tabbs, 8vo.: Lond. 1822.

The subject was proposed, and a prize of fifty pounds awarded to this essay, by the Society for Propagating Christian Knowledge in the Diocese of St. David's in 1821. This appears to me to have been a curious application of its funds by such a society. Can any of your readers explain it?


"Johnson's turgid style"—"What does not fade?"—Can any of your readers tell me where to find the following lines?

"I own I like not Johnson's turgid style, That gives an inch th' importance of a mile," &c. &c.


"What does not fade? The tower which long has stood The crash of tempests, and the warring winds, Shook by the sure but slow destroyer, Time, Now hangs in doubtful ruins o'er its base," &c. &c.

A. F. B.

Meaning of "Lane," &c.—By what process of development could the Anglo-Saxon laen (i. e. the English word lane, and the Scottish loaning) have obtained its present meaning, which answers to that of the limes of the Roman agrimensores?

What is considered to be the English measurement of the Roman juger, and the authorities for such measurement?

What is the measurement of the Anglo-Saxon hyde, and the authorities for such measurement?


Theobald le Botiller.—What Theobald le Botiller did Rose de Vernon marry? See Vernon, in Burke's Extinct Peerage; Butler, in Lynch's Feudal Dignities; and the 2nd Butler (Ormond), in Lodge's Peerage.

Y. S. M.

William, fifth Lord Harrington.—Did William, fifth Lord Harrington, marry Margaret Neville (see Burke's Extinct Peerage) or Lady Catherine Courtenay? The latter is given in Burke's Peerage and Baronetage, in Sir John Harrington's pedigree.

Y. S. M.

Singular Discovery of a Cannon-ball.—A heavy cannon-shot, I should presume a thirty-two pound ball, was found embedded in a large tree, cut down some years since on the estate of J. W. Martin, Esq., at Showborough, in the parish of Twyning, Gloucestershire. There was never till quite lately any house of importance on the spot, nor is there any trace of intrenchments to be discovered. The tree stood at some distance from the banks of the Avon, and on the other side of that river runs the road from Tewkesbury through Bredon to Pershore. The ball in question is marked with the broad arrow. From whence and at what period was the shot fired?



Scottish Castles.—It is a popular belief, and quoted frequently in the Statistical Account of Scotland, and other works referring to Scottish affairs, that the fortresses of Edinburgh Castle, Stirling Castle, Dumbarton Castle, Blackness Castle, were appointed by the Articles of Union between England and Scotland to be kept in repair and garrisoned. Can any of your readers refer to the foundation for this statement? for no reference in to be found to the subject in the Articles of Union.



Sneezing.—Concerning sneezing, it is a curious circumstance that if any one should sneeze in company in North Germany, those present will say, "Your good health;" in Vienna, gentlemen in a cafe will take off their hats, and say, "God be with you" and in Ireland Paddy will say, "God bless your honour," or "Long life to your honour." I understand that in Italy and Spain similar expressions are used and I think I remember {367} hearing, that in Bengal the natives make a "salam" on these occasions.

There is also, I believe, a popular idea among some of sneezing having some connexion with Satanic agency; and I lately met with a case where a peculiar odour was invariably distinguishable by two sisters, on a certain individual violently sneezing.

I shall be very much obliged if any of your readers can furnish me with any facts, theories, or popular ideas upon this subject.


Spenser's "Fairy Queen."—Allow me to employ an interval of leisure, after a visit to the remains of Kilcolman Castle, in inquiring whether any of your Irish readers can afford information respecting the existence of the long missing books of the Fairy Queen? Mrs. Hall, in her work on Ireland (vol. i. pp. 93, 94.), says that—

"More than mere rumour exists for believing that the lost books have been preserved, and that the MS. was in the possession of a Captain Garrett Nagle within the last forty years."

W. L. N.

Buttevant, co. Cork.

Poema del Cid.—Is there any edition of the Poema del Cid besides the one published by Sanchez (Poesias Castellanas anteriores al siglo XV.), and reprinted by Ochoa, and appended likewise to an edition of Ochoa's Tesoro de los Romanceros, &c., published at Barcelona in 1840? I shall feel obliged by being referred to an edition in a detached form, with glossary and notes, if such there be.

J. M. B.

The Brazen Head.—As upon two former occasions, through the useful and interesting pages of "N. & Q.," have been enabled to obtain information which I could procure in no other way, I am glad to have an opportunity of recording the obligations I myself, like many more, am under to "N. & Q.," and to some of your talented and kindly correspondents. Being anxious still farther to trespass upon your space, I take this opportunity of alike thanking you and them.—Could any reader of "N. & Q." inform me whether more than two numbers of The Brazen Head were ever published? Through the great courtesy of talented correspondent of "N. & Q." from Worcester, I have the first two; but I am anxious, for a literary purpose, to ascertain whether the publication was continued after.

A. F. A. W.

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Minor Queries with Answers.

"The Basilics."—What is the manuscript called the "Basilics" in the following passage, which occurs in a cotemporary MS., "Memoirs of the Life of the Right Hon. John Lord Scudamore, Viscount Sligo in Ireland," in the library of P. Howard, Esq., at Corby Castle? Is it known where it is now preserved?

Have these memoirs been printed? Lord S. was born in 1600, and was ambassador to France when this circumstance occurred.

"There having been intelligence given to his Excellence by that renowned person, and his then great acquaintance, Mons. Grotius, lieger in Paris for the crown of Sweden, of a very valuable manuscript of many volumes, being the body of the civil law in Greek, commonly called the 'Basilics,' in the hands of the heirs of the famous lawyer lately deceased, Petrus Faber,—desirous to enrich his country with this treasure, he transacted and agreed with the possessors for the price of it, which was no less than 500l. But when it should have been delivered, and the money was ready to be paid down, Cardinal Richelieu (the great French minister of state at that time) having notice of the transaction interposed, and forbad the going on upon the contract, as thinking it would have been a diminution to their nation to permit such a prize to come into the hands of strangers, and by their charge and labour be communicated to the world."



[Basilica is a name given to a digest of laws commenced by the Emperor Basilius in the year 867, and completed by his son Leo the philosopher in the year 880, the former having carried the work as far as forty books, and the latter having added twenty more, in which state it was published. The complete edition of Charles Annibal Fabrot, which appeared at Paris in 1647, proved of great service to the study of ancient jurisprudence. It is contained in seven volumes folio, and accompanied with Latin version of the text, as well as of the Greek scholia subjoined. See a valuable article on the Greek texts of the Roman law, in the Foreign Quarterly Review, vol. vii. p. 461.—The MS. "Memoirs of the Hon. John Lord Scudamore" seem to have been used by Matthew Gibson in his View of the Ancient and Present State of the Churches of Door, Horne-Lacy, and Hempsted, with Memoirs of the Scudamore Family, 4to., 1727, as the substance of the passage quoted by our correspondent is given at p. 95. of that work.]

Fire at Honiton.—I am solicitous to learn the particulars of a fire which occurred at Honiton, in Devonshire, in the year 1765, when the chapel and school-house were burned down, and the former thereupon rebuilt by collections under a brief.

In a review of Mr. Digby Wyatt's "Industrial Arts of the Nineteenth Century" (in the Athenaeum for June 18th of the current year), reference is made by Mrs. Treadwin of Exeter to "a book mentioning two great fires which occurred in 1756 and 1767 in Honiton," but it is not stated who was the author of that book. {368}

Can you or any of your readers furnish me with the title of the book intended, or direct me to any other sources of information on the subject of the Honiton fires?

S. T.

[Notices of fires at Honiton occur in the following works:—The Wisdom and Righteousness of Divine Providence. A sermon preached at Honiton on occasion of a dreadful fire, 21st August, 1765, which consumed 140 houses, a chapel, and a meeting-house. By R. Harrison, 4to. 1765.—Shaw, in his Tour to the West of England, p. 444., mentions a dreadful fire, 19th July, 1747, which reduced three parts of the town to ashes.—Lysons' Devonshire, p. 281., states that Honiton has been visited by the destructive calamity of fire in 1672, 1747, 1754, and 1765. The last-mentioned happened on the 21st August, and was the most calamitous; 115 houses were burnt down, and the steeple of Allhallows Chapel, with the school, were destroyed. The damage was estimated at above 10,500l.]

Michaelmas Goose.—The following little inconsistency in a commonly-received tradition has led me, at the request of a large party of well-read and literary friends, to request your solution of the difficulty in an early Number of your paper.

It is currently reported, and nine men in ten will tell you, if you ask them the reason why goose is always eaten on the 29th Sept., Michaelmas Day, that Queen Elizabeth was eating goose when the news of the destruction of the Invincible Armada was brought, and she immediately put down her knife and fork, and said, "From this day forth let all British-born subjects eat goose on this day."

Now in Creasy's Battles it is stated that the Spanish fleet was destroyed in the month of July. How could it then be the 29th of Sept. when the news of its defeat reached her majesty? If any of your readers can solve this seeming improbability be will greatly oblige


[Although it may be difficult to show how it is that the custom of eating goose has in this country been transferred to Michaelmas Day, while on the Continent it is observed at Martinmas, from which practice the goose is often called St. Martin's bird, it is very easy to prove that there is no foundation for the tradition referred to by our correspondent. For the following extract from Stow's Annales (ed. Howes), p. 749., will show that, so far from the news of the defeat of the Armada not reaching Elizabeth until the 29th of September, public thanksgivings for the victory had been offered on the 20th of the preceding month:

"On the 20th of August, M. Nowell, Deane of Paules, preached at Paules Crosse, in presence of the lord Maior and Aldermen, and the companies in their best liveries, moving them to give laud and praise unto Almightie God, for the great victorie by him given to our English nation, by the overthrowe of the Spanish fleete."]

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(Vol. viii., p. 221.)

Although I cannot answer the question of SIR WALTER TREVELYAN, the following notices respecting the portraits of the Philosopher of Malmesbury may not be unacceptable to him and to those who hold this distinguished man's memory in high respect.

That admirable gossip, John Aubrey, who lived in habits of intimacy with Hobbes, has left us such a lively picture of the man, his person, and his manners, as to leave nothing to desire. In reading it we cannot but regret that Aubrey had not been a cotemporary of our great poet, about whom he has been only able to furnish us with some hearsay anecdotes.

Aubrey tells us that—

"Sir Charles Scarborough, M.D., Physician to his Royal Highness the Duke of York, much loved the conversation of Hobbes, and hath a picture of him (drawne about 1655), under which is this distich:

'Si quaeris de me, mores inquire, sed ille Qui quaerit de me, forsitan alter erit.'"

"In their meeting (i. e. the Royal Society) at Gresham College is his picture drawne by the life, 1663, by a good hand, which they much esteeme, and several copies have been taken of it."

In a note Aubrey says:

"He did me the honour to sit for his picture to Jo. Baptist Caspars, an excellent painter, and 'tis a good piece. I presented it to the Society twelve years since."

In other places he tells us:

"Amongst other of his acquaintance I must not forget Mr. Samuel Cowper (Cooper), the prince of limners of this last age, who drew his picture as like as art could afford, and one of the best pieces that ever he did which his Majesty, at his returne, bought of him, and conserves as one of his greatest rarities in his closet at Whitehall."

In a note he adds:

"This picture I intend to be borrowed of his Majesty for Mr. Loggan to engrave an accurate piece by, which will sell well both at home and abroad."

Again he says:

"Mr. S. Cowper (at whose house Hobbes and Sir William Petty often met) drew his picture twice: the first the King has; the other is yet in the custody of his (Cooper's) widowe; but he (Cowper) gave it indeed to me (and I promised I would give it to the archives at Oxon), but I, like a fool, did not take possession of it, for something of the garment was not quite finished, and he died, I being then in the country."


This picture is, I believe, now in my possession. It is a small half-length oil painting, measuring about twelve inches by nine. Hobbes is represented at an open arch or window, with his book, the Leviathan, open before him; the dress is, as Aubrey states, unfinished, and beneath is the remarkable inscription,—


It represents the philosopher at an advanced age, and is conformable in every respect to the following description of his person:

"In his old age he was very bald, yet within dore he used to study and sit bareheaded, and said he never tooke cold in his head, but that the greatest trouble was to keepe off the flies from pitching on the baldness. His head was of a mallet forme, approved by the physiologers. His face not very great, ample forehead, yellowish-red whiskers, which naturally turned up; belowe he was shaved close, except a little tip under his lip; not but that nature would have afforded him a venerable beard, but being mostly of a cheerful and pleasant humour, he affected not at all austerity and gravity, and to look severe. He considered gravity and heavinesse of countenance not so good marks of assurance of God's favour, as a cheerful charitable, and upright behaviour, which are better signes of religions than the zealous maintaining of controverted doctrines. He had a good eie, and that of a hazel colour, which was full of life and spirit, even to his last; when he was in discourse, there shone (as it were) a bright live coale within it. He had two kinds of looks; when he laught, was witty, and in a merry humour, one could scarce see his eies; by and by, when he was serious and earnest, he opened his eies round his eie-lids: he had middling eies, not very big nor very little. He was six foote high and something better, and went indifferently erect, or rather, considering his great age, very erect."

Aubrey was one of the patrons of Hollar, of whom he has also given us some brief but interesting particulars. The two following letters, which were transcribed by Malone when he contemplated a publication of the Aubrey papers, deserve preservation; indeed, one of them relates immediately to the subject of this notice:


"I have now done the picture of Mr. Hobbes, and have showed it to some of his acquaintance, who say it to be very like; but Stent has deceived me, and maketh demurr to have it of me; as that at this present my labour seemeth to be lost, for it lyeth dead by me. However, I returne you many thankes for lending mee the Principall, and I have halve a dozen copies for you, and the painting I have delivered to your Messenger who brought it to mee before.

"Your humble servant, "W. HOLLAR.

"The 1st of August, 1661."

"[For Mr. Aubrey.]


"I have beene told this morning that you are in Town, and that you desire to speak with mee, so I did presently repaire to your Lodging, but they told mee that you went out at 6 o'clock that morning, and it was past 7 then. If I could know certaine time when to finde you I would waite on you. My selve doe lodge without St. Clement's Inne back doore; as soon as you come up the steps and out of that doore is the first house and doore on the left hand, two paire of staires into a little passage right before you; but I am much abroad, and yet enough at home too.

"Your most humble servant, W. HOLLAR.

"If you had occasion to aske for mee of the people of the house, then you must say the Frenchman Limmner, for they know not my name perfectly, for reasons sake, otherwise you may goe up directly."

This minute localising of one of the humble workshops of this admirable artist may not be unacceptable to MR. PETER CUNNINGHAM for some future edition of his very interesting Handbook of London. It may not be amiss to add that Hollar died on the 25th of March 1677, in the seventieth year of his age and that he was buried in St. Margaret's churchyard, Westminster, near the north-west corner of the tower, but without stone to mark the spot.



* * * * *


(Vol. viii., p. 62.)

In the vestry of the fine old priory church at Cartmel, in Lancashire, there is a good library, chiefly of divinity, consisting of about three hundred volumes, placed in a commodious room, and kept in nice order. This small but valuable collection was left to the parish by Thomas Preston, of Holker, Esq.

There is another in the vestry of the church at Castleton, in Derbyshire; or rather in a room built expressly to contain then, adjoining the vestry. They were left to the parish by the Rev. James Farrer, M.A., who had been vicar of Castleton for about forty-five years, and consist of about two thousand volumes in good condition, partly theological and partly miscellaneous, about equally divided, which are lent to the parishioners at the discretion of the vicar. Mr. Farrer left behind him a maiden sister, and a brother-in-law Mr. Hamilton, who resided in Bath; the former of whom erected the room containing the books, and a vestry at the same time and both considerably augmented the number of volumes, and made the library what it now is.

Under the chancel of the spacious and venerable parish church of Halifax, in Yorkshire, are some large rooms upon a level with the lower part of the churchyard, in one of which is contained a good library of books. Robert Clay, D.D., vicar of Halifax, who died April 9, 1628, was buried in this library, which he is said to have built. {370}

In the Rectory House at Whitchurch, in Shropshire, built by Richard Newcome, D.D., rector of that place, and afterwards Bishop of St. Asaph, there is a valuable library left as an heirloom by the bequest of Jane, Countess Dowager of Bridgewater; who, in the year 1707, having purchased from his executors the library of the Reverend Clement Sankey, D.D., rector of Whitchurch, for 305l., left it for ever for the use of the rectors for the time being. The number of the volumes was 2250: amongst which are a fine copy of Walton's Polyglott Bible, some of the ancient Fathers, and other valuable theological works. This collection has been subsequently increased by a bequest from the late Rev. Francis Henry, Earl of Bridgewater (of eccentric memory), rector of Whitchurch, who by his will, dated in 1825, gave the whole of his own books in the Rectory House at Whitchurch, to be added to the others, and left also the sum of 150l. to the rector to be invested in his name, and the dividends thereof expended by him, together with the money arising from the sale of his lordship's wines and liquors in his cellars at Whitchurch, in the purchase of printed books for the use of the rectors of that parish for the time being.

The same noble earl presented to the rector of Middle, in the county of Salop, a small collection of books towards founding a library there: and bequeathed by his will the sum of 800l., to be applied, under the direction of the rector of Middle for the time being, for augmenting this library. He also left a farther sum of 150l. to be invested in the name of the rector; and the dividends thereof expended by him in the purchase of books for the continual augmentation of the library, in the same manner as he had done at Whitchurch.

It is to this Earl of Bridgewater that we are indebted not only for those valuable works the Bridgewater Treatises, but also for large bequests of money and landed property to the trustees of the British Museum, for the purchase of manuscripts, in addition to those from his own collection, which he had already bequeathed to the same institution.


Stand Rectory.

* * * * *


(Vol. viii., pp. 8. 127.)

I am in a position to furnish a more complete account of this skirmish, and of the action of April 26, in which my grandfather, General Mansel, fell, from a copy of the Evening Mail of May 14, 1794, now in the possession of J. C. Mansel, Esq., of Cosgrove Hall, Northamptonshire. Your correspondent MR. T. C. SMITH appears to have been misinformed as to the immediate suppression of the Poetical Sketches by an officer of the Guards, as I have seen the third edition of that work, printed in 1796.

"Particulars of the Glorious Victory obtained by the English Cavalry over the French under the Command of General Chapuis, at Troisoille, on the 26th of April, 1794.

"On the 25th, according to orders received from the Committee of Public Safety, and subsequently from General Pichegru, General Chapuis, who commanded the Camp of Caesar, marched from thence with his whole force, consisting of 25,000 infantry, 3000 cavalry, and seventy-five pieces of cannon. At Cambray he divided them into three columns; the one marched by Ligny, and attacked the redoubt at Troisoille, which was most gallantly defended by Col. Congreve against this column of 10,000 men. The second column was then united, consisting of 12,000 men, which marched on the high road as far as Beausois, and from that village turned off to join the first column; and the attack recommenced against Col. Congreve's redoubt, who kept the whole at bay. The enemy's flank was supported by the village of Caudry, to defend which they had six pieces of cannon, 2000 infantry, and 500 cavalry. During this period Gen. Otto conceived it practicable to fall on their flank with the cavalry; in consequence of which, Gen. Mansel, with about 1450 men—consisting of the Blues, 1st and 3rd Dragoon Guards, 5th Dragoon Guards, and 1st Dragoons, 15th and 16th Dragoons, with Gen. Dundas, and a division of Austrian cuirassiers, and another of Archduke Ferdinand's hussars under Prince Swartzenburg—after several manoeuvres, came up with the enemy in the village of Caudry, through which they charged, putting the cavalry to flight, and putting a number of infantry to the sword, and taking the cannon. Gen. Chapuis, perceiving the attack on the village of Caudry, sent down the regiment of carabineers to support those troops; but the succour came too late, and this regiment was charged by the English light dragoons and the hussars, and immediately gave way with some little loss. The charge was then continued against a battery of eight pieces of cannon behind a small ravine, which was soon carried; and, with equal rapidity, the heavy cavalry rushed on to attack a battery of fourteen pieces of cannon, placed on an eminence behind a very steep ravine, into which many of the front ranks fell; and the cannon, being loaded with grape, did some execution: however, a considerable body, with Gen. Mansel at their head, passed the ravine, and charged the cannon with inconceivable intrepidity, and their efforts were crowned with the utmost success. This event decided the day, and the remaining time was passed in cutting down battalions, till every man and horse was obliged to give up the pursuit from fatigue. It was at the mouth of this battery that the brave and worthy Gen. Mansel was shot: one grape-shot entering his chin, fracturing the spine, and coming out between the shoulders; and the other breaking his arm to splinters; his horse was also killed under him, his Brigade-Major Payne's horse shot, and his son and aide-de-camp, Capt. Mansel, wounded and taken prisoner; and it is since known that he was taken into {371} Arras. The French lost between 14,000 and 15,000 men killed; we took 580 prisoners. The loss in tumbrils and ammunition was immense, and in all fifty pieces of cannon, of which thirty-five fell to the English; twenty-seven to the heavy, and eight to the light cavalry. Thus ended a day which will redound with immortal honour to the bravery of the British cavalry, who, assisted by a small body of Austrians, the whole not amounting to 1500, gained so complete a victory over 22,000 men in sight of their corps de reserve, consisting of 6000 men and twenty pieces of cannon. Had the cavalry been more numerous, or the infantry able to come up, it is probable few of the French would have escaped. History does not furnish such an example of courage.

"The whole army lamented the loss of the brave General, who thus gloriously terminated a long military career, during which he had been ever honoured, esteemed, and respected by all who knew him. It should be some consolation to those he has left behind him, that his reputation was as unsullied as his soul was honest; and that he died as he lived, an example of true courage, honour, and humility. On the 24th General Mansel narrowly escaped being surrounded at Villers de Couche by the enemy, owing to a mistake of General Otto's aide-de-camp, who was sent to bring up the heavy cavalry: in doing which he mistook the way, and led them to the front of the enemy's cannon, by which the 3rd Dragoon Guards suffered considerably."—Extract from the Evening Mail, May 14, 1794.

From the above extract, compared with the communication of MR. SMITH (Vol. viii., p. 127.), it appears that the 15th Light Dragoons were engaged in both actions, that of Villers en Couche on April 24, and that of Troisoille (or Cateau) on the 26th. In the statement communicated by MR. SIMPSON (Ibid. p. 8.), there appears to be some confusion between the particulars of the two engagements.


St. John's College, Oxford

As the action at Villers en Couche has lately been brought before your readers, allow me to direct your correspondent to the Journals and Correspondence of Sir Harry Calvert, edited by Sir Harry Verney, and just published by Messrs. Hurst and Co.,—a book which contains a good deal of valuable information respecting a memorable campaign. Sir Harry Calvert, under the date of the 25th of April, 1794, thus describes the action at Villers en Couche:

"Since Tuesday, as I foresaw was likely, we have been a good deal on the qui vive. On Wednesday morning we had information that the enemy had moved in considerable force from the Camp de Cesar, and early in the afternoon we learned that they had crossed the Selle at Saultzoir, and pushed patrols towards Quesnoy and Valenciennes. The Duke [of York] sent orders to General Otto, who had gone out to Cambray on a reconnoitring party with light dragoons and hussars, to get into the rear of the enemy, find out their strength, and endeavour to cut them off. The enemy retired to Villers en Couche that night, but occupied Saultzoir and Haussy. Otto, fielding their strength greater than he expected, about 14,000, early in the evening sent in for a brigade of heavy cavalry for his support, which marched first to Fontaine Antarque, and afterwards to St. Hilaire; and in the night he sent for a farther support of four battalions and some artillery. Unfortunately he confided this important mission to a hussar, who never delivered it, probably having lost his way, so that, in the morning, the general found himself under the necessity of attacking with very inferior numbers. However, by repeated charges of his light cavalry, he drove the enemy back into their camp, and took three pieces of cannon. He had, at one time, taken eight; but the enemy, bringing up repeated reinforcements of fresh troops, retook five.

"Our loss I cannot yet ascertain, but I fear the 15th Light Dragoons have suffered considerably. Two battalions of the enemy are entirely destroyed."

The especial bravery of the troops engaged on the 26th, which is another subject noticed by your correspondent BIBLIOTHECAR. CHETHAM. prompted the following entry on his journal by Sir Harry Calvert:

"April 26.—The enemy made a general attack on the camp of the allies. On their approaching the right of the camp, the Duke of York directed a column of heavy cavalry, consisting of the regiment of Zedwitsch Cuirassiers, the Blues, Royals, 1st, 3rd, and 5th Dragoon Guards, to turn the enemy, or endeavour to take them in flank, which service they performed in a style beyond all praise, charging repeatedly through the enemy's column, and taking twenty-six pieces of cannon. The light dragoons and hussars took nine pieces on the left of the Duke's camp."

Sir Harry Verney has printed in an Appendix his father's well-considered plans for the defence of the country against the invasion anticipated in 1796.

J. B.

* * * * *


(Vol. viii., pp. 198. 250. 296.)

The misunderstanding which has arisen between PROFESSOR DE MORGAN and A. E. B. has proceeded, it appears, from the misapplication of the statement of the latter's authority (Arthur Hopton) to the question at issue. Where Hopton says that our lawyers count their day from sunrise to sunset, he, I am of opinion, merely refers to certain instances, such as distress for rent:

"A man cannot distrain for rent or rent-charge in the night (which, according to the author of The Mirror, is after sunset and before sunrising)."—Impey on Distress and Replevin, p. 49.

In common law, the day is now supposed among lawyers to be from six in the morning to seven at night for service of notices; in Chancery till eight at night. And a service after such times at night {372} would be counted as good only for the next day. In the case of Liffin v. Pitcher, 1 Dowl. N. S. 767., Justice Coleridge said, "I am in the habit of giving twenty-four hours to plead when I give one day." Thus it will be perceived that a lawyer's day is of different lengths.

With regard to the time at which a person arrives at majority, we have good authority in support of PROFESSOR DE MORGAN'S statement:

"So that full age in male or female is twenty-one years, which age is completed on the day preceding the anniversary of a person's birth, who till that time is an infant, and so styled in law."—Blackstone's Commentaries, vol. i. p. 463.

There is no doubt also that the law rejects fractions of a day where it is possible:

"It is clear that the law rejecteth all fractions of days for the uncertainty, and commonly allows him that hath part of the day in law to have the whole day, unless where it, by fraction or relation, may be a prejudice to a third person."—Sir O. Bridgm. l.

And in respect to the present case it is quite clear. In the case of Reg. v. The Parish of St. Mary, Warwick, reported in the Jurist (vol. xvii. p. 551.), Lord Campbell said:

"In some cases the Court does not regard the fraction of a day. Where the question is on what day a person came of age, the fraction of the day on which he was born and on which he came of age is not considered."

And farther on he says:

"It is a general maxim that the law does not regard the fraction of a day."


I only treat misquotation as an offence in the old sense of the word; and courteously, but most positively, I deny the right of any one who quotes to omit, or to alter emphasis, without stating what he has done. That A. E. B. did misunderstand me, I was justified in inferring from his implication (p. 198. col. 2) that I made the day begin "a minute after midnight."

Arthur Hopton, whom A. E. B. quotes against me (but the quotation is from chapter xiv., not xiii.), is wrong in his law. The lawyers, from Coke down to our own time, give both days, the natural and artificial, as legal days. See Coke Littleton (Index, Day), the current commentators on Blackstone, and the usual law dictionaries.

Nevertheless, this discussion will serve the purpose. No one denies that the day of majority now begins at midnight: no one pretends to prove, by evidence of decisions, or opinion of writers on law, that it began otherwise in 1600. How then did Ben Jonson make it begin, as clearly A. E. B. shows he does, at six o'clock (meaning probably a certain sunrise)? Hopton throws out the natural day altogether in a work on chronology, and lays down the artificial day as the only one known to lawyers: it is not wonderful that Jonson should have fallen into the same mistake.


* * * * *


(Vol. viii., p. 195.)

I send, as a pendant to MR. WEIR'S lines from Juvenal, the following extract from Cicero:

"Sed in ea es urbe, in qua haec, vel plura, et ornatiora, parietes ipsi loqui posse videantur."—Cic. Epist., 1. vi. 3.: Torquato, Pearce's 12mo. edition.

Most, if not all, of the readers of "N. & Q." are I believe, pleased by having their attention drawn to parallel passages in which a similarity of idea or thought is found. Let us adopt for conciseness the term "parallel passages" (frequently used in "N. & Q."), as embracing every kind of similarity. Contributions of such passages to "N. & Q." would form a very interesting collection. I should be particularly pleased by a full collection of parallel passages from the Scriptures and ancient and modern literature, and especially Shakspeare. (See MR. BUCKTON'S "Shakspearian Parallels," ante, p. 240.)

To prevent sending passages that have been inserted in "N. & Q.," every note should refer to the note immediately preceding. I send the following parallel passages with some hesitation, because I have not my volumes of "N. & Q." at hand, to ascertain whether they have already appeared, and because they are probably familiar to your readers. I do not, however, send them as novelties, but as a contribution to the collection which I wish to see made:

"[Greek: Apo de tou me echontos kai ho echei arthesetai ap' autou.]"—Matt. xxv. 29., Luke xix. 26.

"Nil habuit Codrus. Quis enim hoc negat? et tamen illud Perdidit infelix totum nihil."—Juvenal, I. iii. 208.

The rich man says:

"[Greek: Psuche, echeis polla agatha keimena eis ete polla; anapauou, phage, pie, euphrainou]."—Luke xii. 19.

"Lo, this is the man that took not God for his strength but trusted unto the multitude of his riches."—Ps. lii. 8.

"For he hath said in his heart, Tush, I shall never be cast down there shall no harm happen unto me."—Ps. x. 6., &c. (See Obadiah v. 3.: "Who shall bring me down to the ground?")

So Niobe boasts:

"Felix sum, quis enim hoc neget? felixque manebo. Hoc quoque quis dubitet? tutam me copia fecit. Major sum quam cui possit Fortuna nocere."—Ovid, Met. VI. 194.


"[Greek: Ti de blepeis to karphos to en toi ophthalmoi tou adelphou sou, ten de en toi soi ophthalmoi dokon ou katanoeis]."—Matt. vii. 3.

"Cum tua pervideas oculis mala lippus inunctis, Cur in amicorum vitiis tam cernis acutum, Quam aut aquila, aut serpens Epidaurius?"—Hor. Serm. I. iii. 25.

"[Greek: He nux proekopsen, he de hemera engiken]."—Rom. xiii. 12.

"[Greek: All' iomen; mala gar nux anetai, enguthi d' eos]."—Hom. Iliad, x. 251.

F. W. J.


* * * * *


Mr. Sisson's developing Fluid.—Since I sent you the new formula for MR. SISSON'S positive developer, which you published in Vol. viii., p. 301., MR. SISSON has written to me to say that if, instead of the acetic acid, you add two drachms of formic acid, the new agent proposed by MR. LYTE, you certainly obtain the sweetest-toned positives he has ever seen. The pictures, he says, come out very quickly with it indeed; and with a small lens in a sitting-room he can in about ten seconds obtain the most wonderful detail. Every wrinkle in the face, and ladies' lace ribbons or cap-strings, he says, come out beautifully.

The formula then, as improved by MR. SISSON, is—

Water 5 oz. Protosulphate of iron 1-1/2 drs. Nitrate of lead 1 dr. Formic acid 2 drs.

Perhaps you will give your readers the benefit of it in your next Number. Having tried it myself, I think they will be delighted with the beautiful white silvery tone, without any metallic reflection, produced in pictures developed with it.


20. Compton Terrace, Islington.

Dr. Diamond's Process for Albumenized Paper.—Photographers are under many obligations to DR. DIAMOND, particularly for the valuable information communicated through "N. & Q.," and his obligingness in answering inquiries. I make no doubt he will readily reply to the following questions, suggested by his late letter on the process for printing on albumenized paper.

Will the solution of forty grains of common salt and forty grains of mur. amm., without the albumen, be found to answer for ordinary positive paper (say Canson's, Turner's, or Whatman's)? and, in that case, may it be applied with a brush?

Will the forty-grain solution of nit. sil. (without amm.) answer for paper so prepared? and may this also be applied with a brush?

Should the positives be printed out very strongly? and how long should they remain in the saturated bath of hypo.?

Is not the use of sel d'or subject to the objection that the pictures with which it is used are liable to fade in time?

DR. DIAMOND says that pictures produced by the use of amm. nit. of silver are not to be depended on for permanency. If this be so, it is very important it should be known, as the use of amm. nit. is at present generally recommended and adopted.

C. E. F.

Mr. Lyte's New Process.—Although I presume it is none of your affair what is said or done in "another place," will you kindly ask MR. LYTE for me, if he will be so good as to explain the discrepancy which appears between his "new processes," as given in the Journal of the Photographic Society of Sept. 21, and "N. & Q." of Sept. 10? In the former he says, for sensitizing, take (amongst other things) iodide of ammonia 60 grains: in "N. & Q.," on the contrary, what would seem to be the same receipt, or intended as the same, gives the quantity of this salt one fourth less, 45 grains—a vast difference. Again, in the developing solution the quantity of formic acid is double in your paper what it is in the journal.

I should not have trespassed on your space, but would have written to MR. LYTE directly, except from the fear that some other unfortunate practitioner may have stumbled over the same impediment as I have done, and may not have had courage to make the inquiry.

S. B.

[Having forwarded this communication to MR. LYTE, we have received from that gentleman the following explanations of his process, &c.]

The process which was published in the Photographic Journal was, I am sorry to say, not quite correct in its proportions, on account of a mistake in inclosing the wrong letter to the Editor; but the mistake will, I trust, be rectified by another communication which I have now sent.

The whole of the formulae, however, as given in "N. & Q.," are quite correct.

Let me now, however, trespass on your pages by a few more answers to several other Querists, and which at the same time may be acceptable to some of your readers.

1. The developing agents which are made with iron are very applicable as baths to immerse the plate in; and the formic acid, from its powerful deoxidizing property, renders the iron salt more stable during long use and exposure to the air.

2. In coating paper with albumen, if the upper edge of the paper be sufficiently turned back, and the paper be forced down sufficiently on to the surface of the albumen, no bubbles will form; and {374} the operator will not be troubled with the streaks so often complained of.

3. No time can possibly be fixed for the exposure of the positive to the action of the hypo.; and to produce the best effects, the positive must be continually watched, both while printing and while in the hypo.

4. No hot iron should be applied to the positive after being printed, but the picture should be allowed to dry spontaneously.

5. The developing agent with the pyrogallic and formic acids will keep good a very long time, longer, I think, than that in which acetic acid is used, but cannot be used as a dipping bath.

6. I find the formic acid which I obtain from different chemists rather variable in its strength. What I use is rather below the average strength, so that in general about six drachms of the commercial acid will suffice where I use one ounce; but the excess seems to produce no bad result.

7. A great advantage of the pyrogallic developer which I recommend, is that of its being able to be diluted to almost any extent, with no other result than simply making the development slower. Another point is also worthy of notice, viz. a method by which even a very weak positive on glass may be converted into a very strong negative.

I take a saturated solution of bichloride of mercury in hydrochloric acid, and add of this one to six parts of water. This I pour over the collodion plate, and watch it till the whitening process is quite complete. Having well washed the surface with water, I pour over it a solution of iodide of potassium, very weak, not more than two or three grains to the ounce of water. The effect of this is to turn the white parts to a brilliant yellow, quite impervious to actinic rays. This process is only applicable to weak negative or instantaneous pictures, as, if used on a picture of much intensity, the opacity produced is too great. By using, however, instead of the iodide of potassium, a weak solution of ammonia, as recommended by Mr. Hunt, a less degree of intensity may be produced again a less intensity by hyposulphate of soda and a less degree again, but still a slight darkening, by pouring on the bichloride and pouring it off at once before the whitening commences. I thus can tell the exact degree of negative effect in any picture of whatever intensity. The terchloride of gold is most uncertain in its results, at any rate I find it so.

I must again beg you to excuse the great length of my communication, and hope it will be of service to my fellow photographers.


Florian, Torquay.

* * * * *

Replies to Minor Queries.

Derivation of the Word "Island" (Vol. viii., p. 49.).—I have received through the kindness of Hensleigh Wedgwood, Esq., a copy of the Philological Journal for Feb. 21, 1851, in which my late observations on the etymology of the word island are shown to be almost identical with his own, published more than two years ago, even the minutest particulars. His own surprise on seeing my remarks must have been at least as great as my own, on learning how singularly I had been anticipated; and those of your readers who will refer to the number of the journal in question, will be doubtless as much surprised as either of us.

This coincidence suggests two things: first, the truth of the etymology in question, secondly, the excellency of that spirit which (as in this instance) "thinketh no evil;" and, in so close a resemblance of ideas as that before us, rather than at once start a charge of plagiarism, will believe that it is possible for two persons, with similar habits of thought, to arrive at the same end, and that, too, by singularly identical means, when engaged on one and the same subject.

H. C. K.

—— Rectory, Hereford.

"Paetus and Arria" (Vol. viii., p. 219.).—As I have not observed a reply to the Query respecting the author of Paetus and Arria, a tragedy, I beg to state that the work was not written by a gentleman of the University of Cambridge, but by Mr. Nicholson, son of Mr. Nicholson, a well-known and highly respectable bookseller in Cambridge, in the early part of the present century. The young man, who, besides being unfailing in his attention to business, had a literary turn, and was attached to the fine arts, died in the prime of life. After his death, the poor father, with tears in his eyes, presented me with a copy of the tragedy. I am glad to record this testimony to the character of persons well known to me during several years.

[Greek: Martus Pistos].

"That Swinney" (Vol. viii, p. 213.).—I am well pleased with the manner in which T. S. J. has unearthed "that Swinney," if indeed, as is very probable, Sidney Swinney really was the man who interfered with the great unknown. It may not be impertinent to state that Sidney Swinney, who was of Clare Hall, Cambridge, became B.A. in 1744, M.A. in 1749, and D.D. (per saltum) in 1763. It may also be worth noting that a George Swinney, of the same college, became B.A. in 1767, and M.A. in 1770. This George Swinney may have been Sidney Swinney's son, or his near relation; and may have been the man who went to Lord G. Sackville in July, 1769; but I think this not likely. I will only observe farther that, in the "Graduati Cantabrigienses," {375} the names are spelled Swiney; but changes of this kind, by the parties themselves, are by no means uncommon.

The question, whether Swinney had ever before spoken to Lord G. Sackville, remains unanswered, although Junius most probably made a mistake in that matter.


The Six Gates of Troy (Vol. viii., p. 288.).—The passage of Dares relative to the gates of Troy describes the deeds of Priam on succeeding to the throne:

"Priamus ut Ilium venit, minime moram fecit, ampliora moenia exstruxit, et civitatem munitissimam reddidit.... Regiam quoque aedificavit, et ibi Jovi Statori aram consecravit. Hectorem in Paeoniam misit, Ilio portas fecit, quarum haec sunt nomina: Antenorea, Dardania, Ilia, Scaea, Thymbraea, Trojana. Deinde, postquam Ilium stabilitum vidit, tempus expectavit."—Chap. 4.

It will be observed that these six names correspond with the six names in Shakspeare, except that Shakspeare, following some ignorant transcriber, substitutes Chetas for Scaean.

The work, consisting of forty-four short chapters, which has come down to us under the title of De Excidio Trojae Historia, by Dares Phrygius, is a pseudonymous production, which cannot be placed earlier than the fifth or sixth century. See the preface to the edition of Dederick, Bonnae, 1835; or the article "Dares," by Dr. Schmitz, in Dr. Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography. Other writers spoke of four gates of Troy. (See Heyne, Exc. XIV. ad AEn. II.)


Milton's Widow (Vol. vii., p. 596.; Vol. viii., pp. 12. 134. 200.).—Having noticed several Queries and Replies in your pages concerning the family of the poet Milton's third wife, I beg to give the following extracts from a pamphlet printed by Pullan of Chester so recently as 1851, entitled Historical Facts connected with Nantwich and its Neighbourhood:

"In that same year (1662), Milton was received at Stoke Hall as the husband of Elizabeth Minshull, the grand-daughter of Geoffrey Minshull."—P. 50. "Not far from the Hall, where Milton was once a welcome visitor, stands the Yew Tree House."

There can be little doubt the author of the pamphlet referred to derived the information on which those statements were made from an authentic source; and if so, it seems pretty clear, the Elizabeth Minshull whom Milton married was grand-daughter of Geoffrey Minshull of Stoke Hall.

T. P. L.


Boom (Vol. vii., p. 620.; Vol. viii., p. 183.).—The Bittern is not an uncommon bird in some parts of Wales, where it is very expressively called Aderyn-y-Bwn (the Boom-bird), or Bwmp-y-Gors (Boom of the Fen): the w is pronounced as double o.

W. R. D. S.

"Nugget" not an American Term (Vol. vii. passim).—It is a mistake in our correspondent to suppose that the word "nugget" was used in California by American "diggers" to denominate a lump of gold. That word was never heard of in this country until after the discoveries in Australia. It is not used now in California, "lump" is the proper term; and when a miner accumulates a quantity, he boasts of his "pile," or rejoices in the possession of a "pocket full of rocks."

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