The Project Gutenberg eBook of Notes and Queries, Number 17, February 23, 1850

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Title: Notes and Queries, Number 17, February 23, 1850

Author: Various

Release date: April 1, 2004 [eBook #12018]
Most recently updated: December 14, 2020

Language: English

Credits: Produced by The Internet Library of Early Journals, Jon Ingram,
William Flis, and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team.





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

No. 17. February 23. 1850 Price Threepence.
Stamped Edition 4d.


NOTES:— Page
Alfred's Orosius, by R.T. Hampson 257
Folk Lore—Omens from Cattle—Horse's Head—Rush-bearings 258
On Authors and Books, No. 5., by Bolton Corney 259
Plagiarisms, or Parallel Passages, No. 2. 260
St. Antholin's 260
College Salting, by Rev. Dr. Maitland 261
A few Dodo Queries, by H.E. Strictland 261
Coleridge's Christabel, Byron's Lara: Tablet to Napoleon 262
Minor Queries:—Howkey or Horkey—Lord Bacon's Psalms—Treatise of Equivocation 263
Etymology of Armagh, by Rev. Dr. Todd 264
William Hasse and his Poems, by E.F. Rimbault, LL.D. 265
Beaver Hats—Pisan, by T. Hudson Turner 266
Replies to Minor Queries:—Norman Pedigrees—Translation of Ælian—Ave Trici—Daysman—Saveguard—Calamity—Zero—Complutensian Polyglot—Sir W. Rider—Pokership—Havior, Heavier or Hever—Sir W. Hamilton—Dr. Johnson's Library 266
Etymology of News—The Golden Age 270
Notes on Books, Sales, Catalogues, &c. 270
Books and Odd Volumes wanted 271
Notices to Correspondents 271
Advertisements 271


The sketch of Europe, which our illustrious Alfred has inserted in his translation of Orosius, is justly considered, both here and on the Continent, as a valuable fragment of antiquity1; and I am sorry that I can commend little more than the pains taken by his translators, the celebrated Daines Barrington and Dr. Ingram, to make it available to ordinary readers. The learned judge had very good intentions, but his knowledge of Anglo-Saxon was not equal to the task. Dr. Ingram professedly applied himself to correct both Alfred's text and Barrington's version, so far as relates to the description of Europe; but in two instances, occurring in one passage, he has adopted the judge's mistake of proper names for common nouns. I do not call attention to the circumstance merely as a literary curiosity, but to preserve the royal geographer from liability to imputations of extraordinary ignorance of his subject, and also to show the accuracy of his delineation of Europe at that interesting epoch, whence the principal states of Europe must date their establishment.

King Alfred, mentioning the seat of the Obotriti, or Obotritæ, as they are sometimes named, a Venedic nation, who, in the 9th century, occupied what is now the duchy of Mecklenburg, calls them Apdrede, and says—"Be nor than him is apdrede, and cast north wylte the man æfeldan hæt."2

Barrington translates the words thus:—"To the north is Aprede, and to the north east the wolds which are called Æfeldan."3

Dr. Ingram has the following variation:—"And to the east north are the wolds which are called Heath Wolds."4 To the word wolds he appends a note:—"Wylte. See on this word a note hereafter." Very well; the promised note is to justify the metamorphosis of the warlike tribe, known in the annals and chronicles of the 9th century as the Wilti, Wilzi, Weleti, and Welatibi, into heaths and wolds. Thirty pages further on there is a note by J. Reinhold Forster, the naturalist and navigator, who wrote it for Barrington in full confidence that the translation was correct:—"The Æfeldan," he says, "are, as king Alfred calls them, wolds; there are at present in the middle part of Jutland, large tracts of high moors, covered with heath only."

Of wylte, Dr. Ingram writes:—"This word has never been correctly explained; its original signification is the same, whether written felds, fields, velts, welds, wilds, wylte, wealds, walds, walz, wolds, &c. &c." And on heath, he says:—"Mr. Forster seems to have read Hæfeldan (or Hæthfeldan), which indeed, I find in the Junian MS. inserted as a various reading by Dr. Marshall (MSS. Jun. 15.). It also occurs, further on in the MS., without any various reading. I have therefore inserted it in the text."


Dr. Marshall seems to have understood the passage. What King Alfred says and means is this:—"On the north are the Apdrede (Obotritæ), and on the north east of them are the Wylte, who are called Hæfeldi."

The anonymous Saxon Poet, who wrote the life of Charlemagne, gives the same situation as Alfred to the Wilti:—

"Gens est Slavorum Wilti cognomine dicta,

Proxima litoribus quæ possidet arva supremis

Jungit ubi oceano proprios Germania fines."5

Helmold says that they inhabited the part of the coast opposite to the island of Rugen; and hereabouts Adam of Bremen places the Heveldi, and many other Slavonic tribes.6 I am not aware that any other author than Alfred says, that the Wilti and Heveldi were the same people; but the fact is probable. The Heveldi are of rare occurrence, but not so the Wilti.7 Ptolemy calls them Βελται—Veltæ or Weltæ—and places them in Prussian Pomerania, between the Vistula and Niemen. Eginhard says that "they are Slavonians who, in our manner, are called Wilsi, but in their own language, Welatibi."8 Their country was called Wilcia,9 and, as a branch of them were settled in Batavia about 560, it does not seem very improbable that from them were derived the Wilsæton of the Anglo-Saxon chronicles, meaning the Wilts seated, or settlers in Wilts-shire. The name, as Eginhard has noticed, is Slavic, and is an adoption of welot or weolot, a giant, to denote the strength and fierceness which rendered them formidable neighbours. Heveldi seems to be the same word made emphatic with a foreign addition.

Two other names have been given much trouble to the translators, as well as to Mr. Forster. These are, Mægtha Land and Horiti or Horithi, for both occur, and the latter is not written with the letter thorn, but with a distinct t and h. Alfred has, unquestionably, met with the Slavic gorod, which so frequesntly occurs as the termination of the names of cities in the region where he indicates the seat of his Horiti to be. It signifies a city, and is an etymological equivalent of Goth. gards, a house, Lat. cors, cortis; O.N. gardr, a district, A.-Sax. geard, whence our yard. The Polish form is grodz, and the Sorabic, hrodz. He places the Horiti to the east of the Slavi Dalamanti, who occupied the district north east of Moravia, with the Surpe, that is, Serbi, Servi, on their north, and the Sisle, Slusli, another Slavonic people, on the west. This appears to be the site possessed by the Hunnic founders of Kiow. In Helmold, Chunigord, the city or station of the Huns, is the name of the part of Russia containing Kiow.10

To the north of Horiti, says Alfred, is Mægtha Land.—A Finnic tribe, called Magyar, were settled in the 9th century in Mazovia, whence a part of them descended into Hungary. According to Mr. Forster, Mazovia has been called Magan Land; but I can find no trace of that name. I can easily conceive, however, that Magyar and Land might become, in Saxon copying, Mægtha Land, for the country of the Magyar. Elsewhere, Alfred uses Mægtha Land, the land of the Medes, for Persia.

Is there any other printed copy of the Saxon Orosius than Barrington's? for that forbids confidence by a number of needless and unauthorised alterations in most of the pages.



Omens from Cattle.—I forward to you a Note, which, many years ago, I inserted in my interleaved Brand's Observations on Popular Antiquities, vol. ii. p. 519. 4to., in the hope that, as the subject interested me then, it may not prove uninteresting to some now:—

"A bad omen seems to be drawn from an ox or cow breaking into a garden. Though I laugh at the superstition, the omen was painfully fulfilled in my case.

"About the middle of March, 1843, some cattle were driven close to my house; and, the back door being open, three got into our little bit of garden, and trampled it. When our school-drudge came in the afternoon, and asked the cause of the confusion, she expressed great sorrow and apprehension on being told—said it was a bad sign—and that we should hear of three deaths within the next six months. Alas! in April, we heard of dear J——'s murder; a fortnight after, A—— died; and to-morrow, August 10th, I am to attend the funeral of my excellent son-in-law.

"I have just heard of the same omen from another quarter."

This was added the next day:—

"But what is still more remarkable is, that when I went down to Mr. ——'s burial, and was mentioning the superstition, they told me that, while he was lying ill, a cow got into the front garden, and was driven out with great difficulty."


The Horse's Head—Rush-bearings.—The account of the Welch custom of the "Grey Mare" in a late Number reminded me of something very similar in Cheshire. In the parish of Lynn it is customary, for a week or ten days before the 5th {259} of November, for the skeleton of a horse's head, dressed up with ribbons, &c., having glass eyes inserted in the sockets, and mounted on a short pole by way of handle, to be carried by a man underneath, covered with a horse-cloth. There is generally a chain attached to the nose, which is held by a second man, and they are attended by several others. In houses to which they can gain access, they go through some kind of performance, the man with the chain telling the horse to rear, open its mouth, &c. Their object, of course, is to obtain money. The horse will sometimes seize persons, and hold them fast till they pay for being set free; but he is generally very peaceable,—for in case of resistance being offered, his companions frequently take flight, and leave the poor horse to fight it out. I could never learn the origin of this strange custom. I remember, when very young, having a perfect horror of meeting this animal in the dark.

Another custom, which I suppose prevails in some other places, is the "Rush-bearing." At the annual Wakes a large quantity of rushes are collected together, and loaded on a cart, almost to the height of a load of hay. They are bound on the cart, and cut evenly at each end. On the Saturday evening a number of men sit on the top of the rushes, holding garlands of artificial flowers, tinsel, &c. The cart is drawn round the parish by three or four spirited horses, decked out with ribbons,—the collars being surrounded with small bells. It is attended by morris-dancers, dressed in strange style,—men in women's clothes, &c. One big man in woman's clothes, with his face blacked, has a belt round his waist, to which is attached a large bell, and carries a ladle, in which he collects money from the spectators. The company stop and dance at the principal public-houses in their route, and then proceed to the parish church(!), where the rushes are deposited, and the garlands hung up very conspicuously, to remain till the next year. I believe a custom somewhat similar exists in the adjoining parish of Warburton, but not carried out in such grand style.

It would be very interesting if your correspondents in different parts of the country would send accounts of these relics of the barbarous ages.


Runcorn, Feb. 13. 1850.


As a writer of dedications, Samuel Johnson was the giant of his time. He once said to Boswell, the subject arising at a dinner-party, "Why, I have dedicated to the royal family all round,"—and the honest chronicler proves that he spoke advisedly.

Compositions of this nature admit much variety of character. A dedication may be the pure homage which we owe to merit, or the expression of gratitude for favours received, or a memorial of cherished friendship; and such dedications, in point of motive, are beyond the reach of censure—I may fairly assert, are very commendable. Nevertheless, Johnson left no compositions of either class: "the loftiness of his mind," as Boswell gravely states, "prevented him from ever dedicating in his own person."

A more equivocal sort of dedication also prevailed. A book was supposed to require the prefix of some eminent name as its patron, in order to ensure its success. Now the author, though very capable of writing with propriety on his chosen theme, might be unequal to the courtly style which dedicators were wont to display, and as the complement was to be returned substantially, he might be tempted to employ a superior artist on the occasion. It was chiefly under such circumstances that the powers of Johnson were called into action. By what arguments the stern moralist would have endeavoured to justify the deception, for it deserves no better name, is more than I can undertake to decide, and I submit the query to his enthusiastic admirers.

To the dedications enumerated by the faithful Boswell, and by his sharp-sighted editors, Malone and Croker, I have to announce on internal evidence, a gorgeous addition! It is the dedication to Edward Augustus, Duke of York, of An Introduction to Geometry, by William Payne, London: T. Payne, at the Mews Gate, 1767. 4º., 1768. 8º. I transcribe it literatim. It wants no comment:—



"They who are permitted to prefix the names of princes to treatises of science generally enjoy the protection of a patron, without fearing the censure of a judge.

"The honour of approaching your royal highness has given me many opportunities of knowing, that the work which I now presume to offer will not partake of the usual security. For as the knowledge which your royal highness has already acquired of GEOMETRY extends beyond the limits of an introduction. I expect not to inform you; I shall be happy if I merit your approbation.

"An address to such a patron admits no recommendation of the science. It is superfluous to tell your royal highness that GEOMETRY is the primary and fundamental art of life; that its effects are extended through the principal operations of human skill; that it conducts the soldier in the field, and the seaman in the ocean; that it gives strength to the fortress, and elegance to the palace. To your royal highness all this is already known; GEOMETRY is secure of your regard, and your opinion of its usefulness and value has sufficiently appeared, by the condescension in which you have been pleased to honour {260} one who has so little pretension to the notice of princes, as


"Your royal highnesses [sic]'

"Most obliged,

"Most obedient,

"And most humble servant,


A short preface follows, which bears marks of reparation. It may have received some touches from the same masterly hand.

The external evidence in favour of the ascription of the above piece to Johnson, if slight in itself, is not devoid of significance. He had dedicated a book for the same author, which book was also published by Mr. Thomas Payne, who was his brother, in 1756.



[Continued from No. 11. p. 163.]

"Dans les premières passions les femmes aiment l'amant; dans les autres elles aiment l'amour."—La Rouchefoucauld, Max. 494.

"In her first passions woman loves her lover,

In all the others all she loves is love,

Which grows a habit she can ne'er get over,

And fits her loosely—like an easy glove," etc.

Don Juan, canto iii. st. iii.

There is no note on this passage; but on the concluding lines of the very next stanza,

"Although, no doubt, her first of love affairs

Is that to which her heart is wholly granted;

Yet there are some, they say, who have had none,

But those who have ne'er end with only one,

we have the following editorial comment:—"These two lines are a versification of a saying of Montaigne." (!!!) The saying is not by Montaigne, but by La Rochefoucauld:—

"On peut trouver des femmes qui n'ont jamais eu de galanterie; mais il est rare d'en trouver qui n'en aient jamais eu qu'une."—Max. 73.

Byron borrows the same idea again:—

"Writing grows a habit, like a woman's gallantry. There are women who have had no intrigue, but few who have had but one only; so there are millions of men who have never written a book, but few who have written only one."—Observations upon an Article in Blackwood's Magazine; Byron's Works, vol. xv. p. 87, Moore's Edition, 17 vols duod. London, 1833.

Both the silence of the author, and the blunder of his editor, seem to me to prove that Les Maximes are not as generally known and studied as they deserve to be.



Your correspondent MR. RIMBAULT (No. 12.) has made rather a grave charge against my predecessors in office as churchwardens and overseers of this parish; and although, I regret to say, such accusations of unjust stewardship and dereliction of duty are frequently and with justice imputed to some parish officers, yet I am happy to be able, in this instance, to remove the stigma which would otherwise attach to those of St. Antholin. The churchwardens' accounts are in good preservation, and present (in an unbroken series) the parish expenditure for nearly three centuries.

Mr. Rimbault has doubtless been misled by some error in the description of the MSS. in Mr. Thorpe's catalogue (as advertised by him for sale), which were probably merely extracts from the original records.

The first volume commences with the year 1574, and finishes in 1708; the accounts are all written at the time of their respective dates, and regularly signed by the auditors then and there present as correct.

I have made numerous extracts from these interesting documents, and notes thereon, which I shall at some future time be happy to lay before your readers, if you should consider them of sufficient importance.

As a voucher for what I have stated with regard to their existence, and to give some idea of their general character, I have selected (at random) a few items from the year 1580-1:—

"The Accompte of Henrie Jaye, Churchwarden of the Parishe of St. Antholyne, from the feaste of the Anunciacon of our Ladye in Anno 1580 unto the same feaste followinge in Anno 1581."

Among the "receaittes" we have—

"Rd of Mr. Thorowgoode for an olde font stone,

by the consente of a vestrie vs iiijd

"Rd for the clothe of bodkine11 yt Ser Roger

Marten hade before in keppinge, and now

sold by the consente of a vestry and our

mynnister iijli vjs viijd

"The Payments as followithe:—

"Pd to the wife of John Bakone gwder of the

Lazer cotte at Myle End12 in full of her due


for keppinge of Evan Redde yt was Mr.

Hariots mane till his departtur and for his

Shete and Burialle as dothe apere xls viijd

"Pd for makinge of the Longe pillowe & the

pulpit clothe ijs

"Pd for a yard and a nale of fustane for the same

pillowe xvjd

"Pd for silke to the same pillowe xvjd

"Pd for xjli of fethers for the same pillowe, at

vd - - iiijs vijd

"Pd for brede and beer that day the quen cam

in xijd

"Pd for candells and mendinge the baldrocke13 vjd

"Pd for paynttinge ye stafe of the survayer iijd

"Pd for mendynge the lytell bell iijs

"Pd to Mr. Sanders for the yearly rent of the

Laystall and skowringe the harnes14 for

his yer iijs viijd

"Pd to Mr. Wright for the makinge of the Cloke15

mor than he gatheride, agred one at the laste

vestrie xvijs

"Pd to Peter Medcalfe for mending the Cloke

when it neade due at or Ladies Daye laste

past in Anno 1581 iijs

"Pd for entringe this account xxd."


Overseer of St. Antholin, 1850.



Mr. Editor.—If your very valuable work had existed in October, 1847, when I published in the British Magazine a part of Archibishop Whitgift's accounts relative to his pupils while he was Master of Trinity College, Cambridge, I should certainly have applied to you for assistance.

In several of the accounts there is a charge for the pupil's "salting;" and after consulting gentlemen more accurately informed with regard to the customs of the university than myself, I was obliged to append a note to the word, when it occurred for the first time in the account of Lord Edward Zouch, in which I said, "I must confess my inability to explain this word; and do not know whether it may be worth while to state that, on my mentioning it to a gentleman, once a fellow-commoner of the college, he told me, that when, as a freshman, he was getting his gown from the maker, he made some remark on the long strips of sleeve by which such gowns are distinguished, and was told that they were called 'salt-bags,' but he could not learn why; and an Oxford friend tells me, that going to the buttery to drink salt and water was part of the form of his admission.... This nobleman's (i.e. Lord Edward Zouch's) amounted to 4s., and that of the Earl of Cumberland to 3s. 4d., while in other cases it was as low as 8d." To this I added the suggestion that it was probably some fee, or expense, which varied according to the rank of the parties. It afterwards occurred to me that this "salting" was, perhaps, some entertainment given by the new-comer, from and after which he ceased to be "fresh;" and that while we seem to have lost the "salting" both really and nominally, we retain the word to which it has reference.

Be this as it may, my attention has just now been recalled to the question by my accidentally meeting with one of Owen's epigrams, which shows that in his time there was some sort of salting at Oxford, and also of peppering at Winchester. As I doubt not that you have readers well acquainted with the customs of both these seats of learning, perhaps some may be good enough to afford information. Owen was at Oxford not many years after Whitgift had been Master of Trinity at Cambridge, if (as Wood states) he took his bachelor's degree in 1590. The epigram is as follows:—

"Oxoniæ salsus (juvenis tum) more vetusto;

Wintoniæque (puer tum) piperatus eram.

Si quid inest nostro piperisve salisve libello,

Oxoniense sal est, Wintoniense piper."

It is No. 64 in that book of epigrams which Owen inscribed "Ad Carolum Eboracensem, fratrem Principis, filium Regis," p. 205, edit. Elz, 1628. 12mo. I give this full reference in order to express my most hearty sympathy with the righteous indignation of my highly respected friend, your correspondent "L.S." (No. 15 p. 230.), against imperfect references. I do not, however, agree with him in thinking it fortunate that he is not a "despotic monarch;" on the contrary, now that I have not to take up verses, or construe Greek to him, I should like it of all things; and I am sure the world would be much the better for it.


Gloucester, Feb. 18. 1850.


The discovery and speedy extinction of that extraordinary bird the DODO, belongs rather to {262} human history than to pure zoology, and I therefore hope that a few Queries relating to this curious subject will be admissible into your publication. I have already, in the work entitled The Dodo and its Kindred, and in the Supplementary notices inserted last year in the Annals and Magazine of Natural History (ser. 2. vol. iii. pp. 136, 259; vol. iv. p. 335), endeavoured to collect together the omne scitum of the Dodo-history, but I am satisfied that the omne scibile is not yet attained.

Query I.—Is there any historical record of the first discovery of Mauritius and Bourbon by the Portuguese? These islands bore the name of Mascarenhas as early as 1598, when they were so indicated on one of the De Bry's maps. Subsequent compilers state that they were thus named after their Portuguese discoverer, but I have not succeeded in finding any notice of them in the histories of Portuguese expeditions to the East Indies which I have consulted. The only appartently authentic indication of their discovery, that I am aware of, is the pillar bearing the name of John III. of Portugal, and dated 1545, which is stated by Leguat, on Du Quesne's authority, to have been found in Bourbon by Flacour, when he took possession of the island in 1653.

Query II.—It appears from Leguat's New Voyage to the East Indies, London, 1708, pp. 2, 37., that the Marquis Du Quesne, being desirous of sending out a colony from Holland to the Isle of Bourbon in 1689 or 1690, published (probably in Dutch) an account of that Island, with a view of inducing emigrants to go thither. I should be greatly obliged if any of your readers can tell me the title, date, and place of publication of this book, and where a copy of it is to be seen or procured.

Query III.—Are there in existence any original oil-paintings of the Dodo by Savery or any other artist, besides the five described in the Dodo and its Kindred—viz., the one at the Hague, at Berlin, at Vienna, at the British Museum, and at Oxford? And are there any original engravings of this bird, besides that in De Bry, in Clusius, in Van den Broecke, in Herbert, in Bontekoc, and in Bontius, of all which I have published fac-similes?

Query IV.—Are there any original authors who mention the Dodo as a living bird, besides Van Neck, Clusius, Heemskerk, Willem van West-Zanen, Matelief, Van der Hagen, Verhuffen, Van den Broecke, Bontekoe, Herbert, Cauche, Lestrange, and Benjamin Harry? Or any authority for the Solitaire of Rodriguez besides Leguat and D'Heguerty; or for the Dodo-like birds of Bourbon besides Castelton, Carré Sieur D.B., and Billiard?

Query V—In Rees' Cyclopæia, article BOURBON, we are told that in that island there is "a kind of large bat, denominated l'Oiseau bleu, which are skinned and eaten as a great delicacy." Where did the compiler of the article pick up this statement?

Query VI.—Is there in existence any figure, published or unpublished, of the Dodo-like bird which once inhabited the Isle of Bourbon?

Query VII—What is the derivation or meaning of the words Dodaers and Dronte, as applied to the Dodo?

Query VIII.—Sir Hamon Lestrange has recorded that about 1638 he saw a living Dodo exhibited in London. (See Sloane MSS. 1839, v. p. 9. in Brit. Mus.; Wilkin's ed. of Sir T. Browne's Works, vol. i. p. 369.; vol. ii, p. 173.; The Dodo and its Kindred, p. 22.) Is there any contemporary notice extant in print or in MS. which confirms this statement? A splendidly bound copy of The Dodo and its Kindred will be given to any one who can answer this query affirmatively.

Query IX.—In Holme's Academy of Armory and Blazou, Chester, 1688, p. 289, we find a Dodo figured as an heraldic device, a fac-simile of which is given in the Annals of Natural History, 2nd series, vol. iii. p. 260. The author thus describes it: "He beareth Sable a Dodo or Dronte proper. By the name of Dronte. This exotic bird doth equal a swan in bigness," &c. &c. Now I wish to ask, where did this family of Dronte reside? Is anything known concerning them? How did they come by these arms? and are any members of the family now living?

Query X.—From a passage in the Histoire de l'Académie Royale des Sciences, 1776, p. 37, it appears that Pingré the French astronomer, published, or at least wrote, a relation of his voyage to Rodriguez, in which he speaks of Solitaires. Is this the fact? and if so, what is the title of his work?



I am one of those who look upon the creations of our great poets as deserving illustration almost as much as actual history; and I am always distressed when I meet with passages representing events with respect to which I cannot make up my mind as to what the author meant, or intended his readers to believe. Two of these occur to me at this moment, and I shall be much obliged by any of your correspondents giving, in your pages, brief replies to my queries, or referring me to any published works where I may find their solution.

1. What did Coleridge mean to represent or imply in his tale of Christabel? Who or what was Geraldine? What did Christabel see in her, at times, so unutterably horrible? What is meant by "the ladye strange" making Christabel carry her over the sill of the portal? &c., &c.


2. What does Byron mean us to infer that Lara saw in his hall that midnight, when he so alarmed his household with

"A sound, a voice, a shriek, a fearful call,

A long loud shriek—and silence."?

The poet, it is true, seems to refuse, purposely, to let his readers into the truth, telling them:—

"Whate'er his frenzy dream'd or eye beheld,

If yet remember'd, ne'er to be reaveal'd,

Rests at his heart."

But still, I conceive there can be no doubt that he knew the truth (I speak as of realities), —knew what he intended to represent by so full and elaborate a delineation of a scene. And it is the author's meaning and intention that I wish to come at.

I will ask one more question relative to this magnificent poem (which I don't think has had justice done it by the critics), but one respecting which I hardly think there can be any doubt as to the author's secret meaning:—Is not the Kaled of Lara the Gulnare of the Giaour?

Before concluding, I will add a query on a very different subject.

3. Many of your readers have, doubtless, seen the large marble tablet erected by the Vallaisians in honour of Napoleon, in the Convent of the Great St. Bernard. A recent traveller in Switzerland (Dr. Forbes) has, I find, noticed the inscription, and questioned, as I had done, both its meaning and Latinity. I extract this author's note as expressing exactly the point on which I desiderate information:—

"Having doubts both as to the precise meaning and lingual purity of the compound epithet Bis Italicus, here applied to Napoleon, I subjoin the passage in which it occurs, for the judgement of the learned:—



Athenæum, January 26. 1850.


Howkey or Horkey.— Can anybody explain the etymology of the word Howkey or Horkey, generally used to denote a harvest-home merriment in our eastern counties? Forbes speaks of it as an intractable word, and neither he nor Sir J. Cullum have succeeded in explaining it satisfactorily.


Audley End, Feb. 16.

Lord Bacon's Metrical Version of the Psalms.—The answer in No. 15. p. 235. to A CORNISHMAN'S Query (No. 13. p. 202) respecting "Bacon's Metrical Version of the Psalms," suggests another query. The work in question was a mere "exercise of sickness;" it contains only seven psalms (the 1st, 12th, 90th, 104th, 126th, 137th, and 149th), and is, without pretension of any kind, a very proper diversion for a mind that could not be inactive and yet required rest; and very good verses for a man unpractised in metrical composition. The Collection of Apophthegms (also a recreation in sickness), though considerably larger and altogether weightier, was considered so trifling a work that Dr. Rawley, in his "perfect list of his Lordship's true works, &c.," appended to the first edition of the Resuscitatio (1657), either forgot or did not think fit to mention it. Yet both these trifles were not only written but published, by Bacon himself the year before his death—a thing quite contrary to his practice; for though he had written and carefully preserved and circulated in manuscript so much, he had till then published nothing that was not of the weightiest and most solid kind. Can any of your correspondents inform me how much two such books may possibly have been worth to a publisher in the year 1625; being works of low price and popular character, proceeding from an author of great name? How much is it reasonable to suppose that a publisher may have given for the copyright? or how far may it have gone towards the payment of a bookseller's bill?


Feb. 7. 1850.

Treatise of Equivocation.—I shall feel happy if, through your very opportune medium, I can obtain some information respecting a very extraordinary and mysterious book, as to its existence, local habitation, and any other material circumstance, which has the title of A Treatise of Equivocation. The first recognition of the work is in the Relation of the Proceedings in the Trial for the Powder Plot, 1604. At signat. I. the Attourney-General, Sir E. Coke, appeals to it, and affirms that it was allowed by the Archpriest Blackwel, and that the title was altered to A Treatise against Lying and Fraudulent Dissimulation. He proceeds to describe some of its contents, as if he were himself acquainted with the book. Thomas Morton, Bishop of Lichfield, and Coventry, afterwards of Durham, in his Full Satisfaction concerning a double Romish Iniquitie; Rebellion and Equivocation, 1606, refers to the work as familiarly acquainted with it. (See Ep. Dedic. A. 3.; likewise pages 88 & 94.) He gives the authorship to Creswell or Tresham. He refers likewise to a Latin work entitled Resolutio Casuum, to the same effect, possibly a translation, to which he subjoins the names of Parsons and Allen. Robert Abbot, in his Antilogia, 1613, pp. 13, 14. emphatically and at length produces the same book and facts; but they are merely copied from the Relation of the Powder-treason Trial. Henry Mason, in his most satisfactory work, The New Art of Lying, &c., 1624, has spoken of the {264} Treatise with the same familiarity (see p. 51.), and elsewhere, if my memory does not deceive me. Dodd, in his Church history,—when will the new edition begin to move again? Can Stonyhurst tell?—ascribes the work to Tresham. Hardly any of the similar works in these times belong to one author. It may just be added, that Parson's Mitigation contains, perhaps, all the substance of the Roman equivocation, with not much reserve or disguise. It was published in answer to Bishop Morton's work in 1607. Foulis has, of course, substantially all the above, but nothing more.

Now, the questions which I want to have solved are these:—Was the book ever extant in MS. Or print? Is it now extant, and where? Who has seen a copy? What is its size, date, and extent? Has the Durham Cathedral Library, in particular, a copy? Mr. Botfield might have informed us. In fact, where is any effectual intelligence of the fugitive to be found?


Feb. 8. 1850.



Some of your correspondents have taken up the not unnatural idea, that the last syllable of the word "Armagh" is identical with the Celtic word magh, a plain. But there are two objections to this. In the first place, the name is never spelt in Irish Armagh, nor even Ardmagh, but always ARDMACHA. Ardmagh or Armagh is only the anglicised spelling, adapted to English tongues and ears. It is therefore clearly absurd to take this corrupt form of the word as our datum, in the attempt to search for its etymology. Secondly, the Irish names of places which are derived from, or compounded of, magh, a plain, are always anglicised, moy, moi, mow, or mo, to represent the pronunciation: as Fermoy, Athmoy, Knockmoy, Moira, Moyagher, Moyaliffe (or Me-aliffe, as it is now commonly spelt), Moville, Moyarta, and thousands of other cases. And those who are acquainted with the Irish language will at once tell, by the ear, that Armagh, as the word is pronounced by the native peasantry, even by those who have lost that language (as most of them in that district now have), could not be a compound of magh, a plain.

The work of M. Bullet, quoted by your correspondent "HERMES," is full of ignorant blunders similar to that which he commits, when he tells us that Armagh in compounded of "Ar, article, and mag, ville." The article, in Irish, is An, not ar; and mag does not signify a town. He adopts, your readers will perceive, the modern English spelling, which could not lead to a correct result, even if M. Bullet had been acquainted with the Celtic languages. The same remark applies to the explanation given by the author of Circles of Gomer. Ard, not Ar, is the word to be explained; and therefore, even though Ar and Ararat meant, as he tells us, "earth, country, or upon and on the earth," this would throw no light on the etymology of ARDmacha.

"HIBERNICUS" (No. 14. p. 217.) is partly right and partly wrong; he adopts the anglicised spelling of the second syllable, although he seems aware that the first syllable ought to be Ard; and he admits also that this word is a substantive, signifying a height, not the adjective high. "A high plain," in Irish, would be, not Ardmagh, or Ardmoy (as it would have been anglicised), but Magh-ard (Anglice Moyard). Great light will be thrown on the whole subject of the etymology of Irish typographical names, when the Index to my friend Mr. O'Donovan's edition of the Annals of the Four Masters makes its appearance.

I may add too, in conclusion, that Camden is wrong in suggesting that Armach (as he spells it, retaining, curiously enough, the correct etymology of the last syllable) is identical with Dearmach (where the last syllable ought to be magh). This latter place is the well-known Durrow, in the county Westmeath; and its name, in Irish, is Duir-magh, which is really a compound from magh, a plain. Bede tells us, that the word signified, in the Scottish language, Campus roborum (see Bede, Hist. Eccl. lib. iii. c. 4.); but Adamson (Vit. Columbæ, c. 39.) more correctly translates it, "monasterium Roboreti Campi." It is not likely that such authorities could confound Durrow, in Westmeath, with the ecclesiastical metropolis of Ireland, and patriarchal see of St. Patrick.

Whoever the Mach or Macha was from whom Ardmacha has its name (whether the queen called Macha-mong-ruadh, whose reign is assigned by O'Flaherty to A.M. 3603, or the older Macha, who is said to be the wife of Nemedius), it should be borne in mind, that the word whose etymology is required is ARDMACHA16, and not Armagh. What would be thought of the critic who would now attempt to investigate the etymology of the English word bishop, by dividing it into two syllables, and seeking analogies in sound for each syllable.

I have ventured to go at greater length into this matter than its importance may seem to warrant, because it illustrates so clearly a very general error, from which Celtic literature has deeply suffered, of inventing fanciful etymologies adapted to the modern English spellings, instead of the original Celtic forms of names; and this error, as the question before us proves, is as old as Camden's time, and older.


Trin. Coll. Dublin, Feb. 2, 1850.



I read with great pleasure MR. COLLIER'S interesting paper on "William Basse and his Poems," inserted in your 13th Number. Very little is known of this once popular poet, but it is very desirable that that little should be collected together, which cannot be better effected than through the friendly system of inter-communication established by your valuable journal.

From my limited researches upon this subject, it appears that there were two poets of the name of William Basse. Anthony Wood (Athen. Oxon., edit. Bliss. iv. 222.) speaks of one William Basse, of Moreton, near Thame, in Oxfordshire, who was some time a retainer of Lord Wenman, of Thame Park, i.e. Richard Viscount Wenman, in the peerage of Ireland. And I find among my MS. biographical collections that a William Basse, of Suffolk, was admitted a sizar of Emanuel College, Cambridge, in 1629. A.B. 1632, and A.M. in 1636. The William Basse who wrote Great Brittaines Sunnes-set in 1613, was also the author of the MS. collection of poems entitled Polyhymnia, mentioned by MR. COLLIER. In proof of this it is merely necessary to notice the dedication of the former "To his Honourable Master, Sir Richard Wenman, Knight," and the verses and acrostics in the MS. "To the Right Hon. the Lady Aungier Wenman, Mrs. Jane Wenman, and the truly noble, vertuous, and learned Lady, the Lady Agnes Wenman." Basse's Poems were evidently intended for the press, but we may conjecture that the confusion of the times prevented them from appearing. Thomas Warton, in his Life and Literary Remains of Ralph Bathurst, M.D., has a copy of verses by the Dr. "To Mr. W. Basse, upon the intended publication of his Poems, January 13, 1651;" to which the learned editor adds, "I find no account of this writer or his poems." The whole consists of forty-four verses, from which I extract the beginning and the end:—

Basse, whose rich mine of wit we here behold

As porcelain earth, more precious, 'cause more old;

Who, like an aged oak, so long hath stood,

And art religion now as well as food:

Though thy grey Muse grew up with elder times,

And our deceased grandsires lisp'd thy rhymes;

Yet we can sing thee too, and make the lays

Which deck thy brow look fresher with thy praise.

Though these, your happy births, have silent past

More years than some abortive wits shall last;

He still writes new, who once so well hath sung:

That Muse can ne'er be old, which ne'er was young."

These verses are valuable as showing that Basse was living in 1651, and that he was then an aged man. The Emanuelian of the same name, who took his M.A. degree in 1636, might possibly be his son. At any rate, the latter was a poet. There are some of his pieces among the MSS. in the Public Library, Cambridge; and I have a small MS. volume of his rhymes, scarcely soaring above mediocrity, which was presented to me by an ancient family residing in Suffolk.

A poem by William Basse is inserted in the Annalia Dubrensia, 1636, in praise of Robert Dover and his revival of the Cotswold Games; but it is not clear to which of these poets we may ascribe it. Malone attributes two rare volumes to one or other of these poets. The first, a translation or paraphrase of Juvenal's tenth satire, entitled That which seems Best is Worst, 12mo., 1617; the second, "A Miscellany of Merriment," entitled A Helpe to Discourse, 2nd edit. 8vo., 1620: but the former is more probably the work of William Barkstead. I may mention that a copy of Basse's Sword and Buckler, or Serving Man's Defence, 1602, is among Malone's books in the Bodleian.

Izaac Walton speaks of William Basse, "one that hath made the choice songs of the Hunter in His Career, and of Tom of Bedlam, and many others of note." The ballad mentioned by MR. COLLIER, "Maister Basse his Career, or the Hunting of the Hare," is undoubtably the one alluded to by Walton. I may add, that it is printed in Wit and Drollery, edit. 1682. p. 64.; and also in Old Ballads, 1725, vol. iii. p. 196. The tune is contained in the Shene MS., a curious collection of old tunes in the Advocate's Library, Edinburgh; and a ballad entitled Hubert's Ghost, to the tune of Basse's Carrier, is preserved among the Bagford Collection of Old Ballads in the British Museum. With regard to the second ballad mentioned by Walton, our knowledge is not so perfect. Sir John Hawkins in a note (Complete Angler, 5th edit. p. 73.) says:—

"This song, beginning—

'Forth from my dark and dismal cell,'

with the music to it, set by Hen. Lawes, is printed in a book, entitled Choice Ayres, Songs and Dialogues, to sing to the Theorbo Lute, and Bass Viol, folio. 1675, and in Playfield's Antidote against Melancholy, 8vo. 1669, and also in Dr. Percy's Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, vol. ii. p. 350; but in the latter with a mistake in the last line of the third stanza, of the word Pentarchy for Pentateuch."

A copy of the Choice Ayres, 1675, is now before me, but Henry Lawes's name does not appear to the song in question. Sir John has evidently made a mistake; the air of Mad Tom was composed by John Cooper, alias Giovanni Coperario, for one of the Masques perfomed by the Gentlemen of Gray's Inn. (See The English Dancing Master, 1651, in the British Museum, and Additional MS. 10,440, in the same repository.) With regard to the ballad itself, there is an early copy (of the latter part of the sixteenth century) {266} preserved in the Harleian MSS., No. 7332, fol. 41. It purports to have been

"Written (i.e. transcribed) be Feargod Barebone, who being at many times idle and wanting employment, wrote out certain songs and epigrams, with the idea of mending his hand in writing."

There is another copy among Malone's MSS. in the Bodleian (No. 16. p. 55.), where it is entitled A new Tom of Bedlam. But I contend there is no evidence to show that this is the ballad alluded to by Walton; none of the copies having the name of the author. We have two other songs (probably more) bearing the same title of Tom of Bedlam; one beginning, "From the top of high Caucasus;" the other commencing, "From the hag and hungry goblin;" either of which are quite as likely to have been intended as that mentioned above.

It still remains a question, I think, which of the two Basses was the author of the ballads mentioned by Walton. But I have already trespassed so long upon your valuable space that I will leave the further consideration of the subject until a future period: in the meantime, perhaps some of your correspondents may be enabled to "illuminate our darkness" upon the various knotty points.



Allow me to say a few words in reply to your correspondent "GASTROS." His quotation from Fairholt (Costume in England), who cites Stubbes's Anatomy of Abuses as the earliest authority for the use of beaver hats in England, is not a satisfactory reply to my query; inasmuch as I am aware that beaver hats were occasionally worn by great people in this country some centuries before Stubbes was born. For example, Henry III. possessed "unum capellum de Bevre cum apparatu auri et lapidibus preciosis;" as appears from the "Wardrobe Account," of the 55th year of his reign. I have, therefore, still to ask for the earliest instance of the use of hats or caps of this material in England; such hats, as well as gloves, are mentioned in several English inventories made between the thirteenth and sixteenth centuries. Is there any example earlier than the time of Henry III.?

"GASTROS" has also obligingly replied to my query as to "the meaning of the term Pisan, used in old records for some part of defensive armour," but he seems to have forgotten that I expressly stated that term had no relation to "the fabrics of Pisa;" at least such is my belief. With regard to the inventory of the arms and armour of Louis le Hutin, taken in 1316, printed in Meyrick's Ancient Armour, to which he kindly refers me, it may be observed that the said inventory is so perversely translated in the first edition of that work (just now I have no means of consulting the second), as to be all but useless; indeed it might be termed one of the most extraordinary literary performances of modern times, as the following instance may suffice to show. One of the items of the inventory is, "une cote gamboisée à arbroissiaus d'or broudées à chardonereus;" and it is thus rendered into English, "a gamboised coat with a rough surface (like a thicket;—note) of gold embroidered on the nap of the cloth!" The real signification is "a gamboised coat embroidered in gold, with little bushes (or trees), with gold-finches [on them]." But I am rather wandering from my point: I never could ascertain on what authority Sir Samuel Meyrick asserted that "jazeran armour," as he calls it, was formed of "overlapping plates." The French word jazeran was derived from the Italian ghiazarino, or ghiazzerino, which signified "a gorget of mail," or what some of our antiquaries have termed "a standard of mail;" in France this word always preserved its relation to mail, and in process of time came to be applied to so lowly an object as a flagon-chain: see Cotgrave's Fr. Dict. ed. 1673. Roquefort, indeed, says a "jaserans" was a cuirass, but to my apprehension the passage which he quotes from the Roman d'Alexandre

"Es haubers, jazerans, et ès elmes gemez"—

seems to prove that, in that instance at least, a gorget is meant. At any rate, the translation of the passage in the inventory to which "GASTROS" refers should be, "three Pisan collerets of steel mail," not that given by Meyrick. Here we have clearly a fabric of Pisa: whereas the pisan, of which I desire to know the meaning, invariable occurs as an independent term, e.g. "item, unum pisanum," or "unum par pisanorum." Of course I have my own conjecture on the subject, but should be glad to hear other opinions; so I again put the question to your correspondents. In conclusion I would observe to "GASTROS" that they must be very late MSS. indeed in which such a contraction as pisan for partisan can be found. If you have room, and think it worth while, I will from time to time send you some corrections of the more flagrant errors of Meyrick.



Norman Pedigrees. In reference to your correspondent "B.'s" inquiries, he will find much information in the Publications de la Société des Antiquaires de Normandie. Under their auspices, M. Estancelin published in 1828 a full history of the Earls of Eu. I am not aware of any full collection of pedigrees of the companions of William the Conqueror: the names of several of the lands from which they took their designations yet remain.



Norman Pedigrees.—In answer to "B.'s" query (No. 14. p. 214.), an excellent Gazetteer was published in Paris, 1831, entitled Dictionnaire Complet Géographique, Statistique, et Commercial de la France et de ses Colonies; par M. Briand-de-Verzé, pp. 856. Many of the names of the Conqueror's Norman companions will be found in that work; as, for instance, Geoffrey de "Mandeville, village. Calvados arrondissement, 31½ O.N.O. de Bayeaux," &c.

Norman de Beauchamp: three Beauchamps are mentioned; that 51. from Avranches will be the one in question.


Oxford, Feb. 19. 1850.

Norman Pedigrees.—Your correspondent "B." (No. 14. p. 214.) would probably find part of the information he seeks in Domesday Book, seu Censualis Willelmi Primi Regis Angliæ. But query? Is "B." right in supposing the prefix "De" to be French? Does it not rather originate in the Latin?

"Domesday" is written in Latin throughout; and the "de," denoting the place, is there occasionally followed by what seems to be the Latin ablative case. I copy an example:—

"Canonici de Hansone ten. l. hida de Sansone," (i.e. loc. in co. Stafford.)

Then of the person it is said—

"Sanson ten. de rege, &c.... iii. hid. træ in Hargedone," &c.


Translation of Ælian.—In answer to the query of "G.M." in No. 15. p. 232., I beg to state that in Lowndes's Manual, vol. i. p. 13., is the following notice under the head of "Ælianus Claudius:"—

"Various Histories translated by T. Stanley, London, 1665, 8vo. 5s. This translation is by the son of the learned editor of Æschylus, and was reprinted 1670. 1677."


Ave Trici and Gheeze Ysenoudi.—I regret that I cannot give "H.L.B." any further information about these ladies than the colophon I transcribed affords. To me, however, it is quite clear that they were sisters of some convent in Flanders or Holland; the name of their spiritual father, Nicolas Wyt, and the names of the ladies, clearly indicate this.


Daysman (No. 12. p. 188.)— It seems to me that a preferable etymology may be found to that given by Nares and Jacob. The arbiter or judge might formerly have occupied a dais or lit de justice, or he might have been selected from those entitled to sit on the raised parts of the courts of law, i.e. jurisconsulti, or barristers as we call them. I have heard another etymology, which however I do not favour, that the arbiter, chosen from men of the same rank as the disputants, should be paid for loss of his day's work.


Perhaps the following may be of some use in clearing up this point. In the Graphic Illustrator, a literary and antiquarian miscellany edited by E.W. Brayley, London, 1834, at p. 14, towards the end of an article on the Tudor Style of Architecture, signed T.M. is the following:—

"This room (talking of the great halls in old manor-houses) was in every manor-house a necessary appendage for holding 'the court,' the services belonging to which are equally denominated 'the homage,' with those of the king's palace. The dais, or raised part of the upper end of the hall, was so called, from the administration of justice. A dais-man is still a popular term for an arbitrator in the North, and Domesday-Book (with the name of which I suppose every one to be familiar) is known to be a list of manor-houses."



[Our correspondents will probably find some confirmation of their ingenious suggestion in the following passage from The Vision of Piers Ploughman:—

"And at the day of dome

At the heighe deys sitte."

Ll. 4898-9. ed. Wright.]

Saveguard.—"BURIENSIS" (No. 13. p. 202.) is informed that a saveguard was an article of dress worn by women, some fifty or sixty years ago, over the skirts of their gowns when riding on horseback, chiefly when they sat on pillions, on a double horse, as it was called.

It was a sort of outside petticoat, usually made of serge, linsey-wolsey, or some other strong material: and its use was to guard the gown from injury by the dirt of the (then very dirty) roads. It was succeeded by the well-known riding-habit; though I have seen it used on a side-siddle by a rider who did not possess the more modern dress.


Amongst the bequests to the Clothworkers' Company of London is one by Barbara Burnell, by will dated 27th June, 1630, wherein she directs the company to bestow 4l. 6s. yearly in woollen cloth to make six waistcoats and six safeguards for six poor women.17

Also we find that John Skepworth, by will dated 17th Oct. 1678, gave two closes of land to the parish of Louth, to the intent that the churchwardens and overseers of the poor there should apply the rents and profits of the same in providing so much coarse woollen cloth as would make ten suits yearly to be given to ten poor people of Louth, the men to have coats and breeches, and the women to have waistcoats and safeguards.18


If "BURIENSIS" has a friend belonging to the Clothworkers' Company, it is probable that he will acquire much information on this subject from their old records.


Derivation of "Calamity" (No. 14. p. 215.)—"Calamity" is from the Latin calamitas, from calamus a straw or stalk of corn, signifying, 1st, the agricultural misfortune of the corn being beaten down or laid by a storm; and thence, any other trouble or disaster:—

"Ipsa egreditur nostri fundi calamitas."

Ter. Eun. i. 1.

Upon which the commentator in the Delph. ed. has this note:—

"Calamitas est grando et tempestas, quæ calamos segetum prosternit et conterit. Unde Cicero Verrem vocat 'calamitosam tempestatem.'"

Ainsworth, quoting the above passage from Terence, adds:—

"Ubi Donatus. Proprie calamitatem rustici vocant quod comminuat calamum; h.e. culmen et segetem."

The etymology of its synonym, "disaster," is more direct—δυσ αστηρ, a star of evil influence, or, as we say, "born under an ill planet."


Forcellini, s.v. Calamitas, says:—

"Proprie significat imminutionem clademque calamorum segetis, quæ grandine vel impetuoso aliquo turbine aut alia quapiam de causa fit."

He then quotes Servius, Ad Georg, i. 151:—

"Robigo genus est vitii, quo culmi pereunt, quod a rusticanis calamitas dicitur."

Then follows the note of Donatus on Ter. Eun. i. 1. 34.

It appears to me, if "calamitas" were derived from calamus, it would mean something very different from what it does.

Another suggestion is, that the first syllable is the same as the root of cad-o, to fall; l and d, everybody knows, are easily interchangeable: as Odysseus, Ulixes: δακρυον, lacrima, tear, &c. &c. If so, calamitas is a corrupted form of cadamitas. Mar. Victorinus, De Orthogr. p. 2456., says:—

"Gueius Pompeius Magnus et scribebat et dicebat Kadamitatem pro Kalamitatem."—(Quoted from Bothe's Poetæ," Scenici Latinorum, vol. v. p. 21.)

But how is the -amitas to be explained? I may as well add, that Döderlein, with his usual felicity, derives it from κολουω.


I beg to refer MR. F.S. MARTIN (No. 14. p. 215.), for the derivation of "Calamity," to the Etymologicon Linguæ Latinæ of Gerard Vossius, or to the Totius Latinitatis Lexicon of Facciolatus and Forcellinus. He will there find that the word calamitas was first used with reference to the storms which destroyed the stalks (calami) of corn, and afterwards came to signify metaphorically, any severe misfortune. The terrific hail-storm of the summer of 1843, which destroyed the crops of corn through several of the eastern and midland counties of this kingdom, was a calamity in the original sense of the word.

"W.P.P." has also kindly replied to this query by furnishing a part of the Article on Calamitas in Vossius; and "J.F.M." adds, Calamitas means—

"The spindling of the corn, which with us is rare, but in hotter countries common: insomuch as the word calamitas was first derived from calamus, when the corn could not get out of the stalk."—Bacon, Nat. Hist. sect. 669.

Derivation of "Zero" (No. 14. p. 215.).—Zero Ital.; Fr. un chiffre, un rien, a cipher in arithmetic, a nought; whence the proverb avere nel zero, mépriser souverainement, to value at nothing, to have a sovereign contempt for. I do not know what the etymology of the word may be; but the application is obvious to that point in the scale of the thermometer below the numbered degrees to which, in ordinary temperatures, the mercury does not sink.


Deanery of Gloucester, Feb. 7. 1850.

"Zero" (No. 14. p. 215.)—Zero, as is well known, is an Italian word signifying the arithmetical figure of nought (0). It has been conjectured that it is derived from the transposition from the Hebrew word ezor, a girdle, the zero assuming that form. (See Furetière, vol. iii.) Prof. le Moine, of Leyden (quoted by Ménage), claims for it also an Eastern origin, and thinks we have received it from the Arabians, together with their method of reckoning ciphers. He suggests that it may be a corruption from the Hebrew [Hebrew: rphs], safara, to number.

Complutensian Polyglot.—I cannot pretend to reply to "MR. JEBB'S" inquiry under this head in No. 12. p. 213.; but perhaps it may assist him in his researches, should he not have seen the pamphlet, to refer to Bishop Smallridge's "Enquiry into the Authority of the Primitive Complutensian Edition of the New Testament, as principally founded on the most ancient Vatican MS., together with some research after that MS. In order to decide the dispute about 1 John v. 7. In a letter to Dr. Bentley. 8vo. London, 1722."


Oxford, Feb. 5.

Sir William Rider.—In reply to the queries of "H.F.," No. 12. p. 186., respecting Sir William Rider, I beg to say that among the many MS. notes which I have collected relating to the Rider family, {269} &c., I find the following from the Visitation of Surry, 1623, and from a MS. book of Pedigrees of Peers in the Herald's College, with additions.

"Thomas Rider married a daughter of —— Poole of Stafforde, by whom he had Sir William Rider, born at Muchalstone, co. Stafforde, Sheriff of London, 1591, Citizen and Haberdasher, Lord Mayor, 1600. Will dated 1 Nov., and proved 9 Nov. 1610, 8 Jas. I. (94 Wood); buried at Low Layton, Essex, &c. Sir William married Elizabeth, da. of R. Stone, of Helme, co. Norfolk; by whom he had, besides other children and descendants, Mary daughter and coheiress, who married Sir Thomas Lake, of Canons, Middlesex, from whose issue descended Viscount Lake."


Pokership (No. 12. p. 185., and No. 14. p. 218.).—It is to be regretted that no information has been supplied respecting the meaning of this remarkable word, either from local sources or from the surveys of crown lands in the Exchequer or Land Revenue offices. In one or the other of these quarters we should surely find something which would dispense with further conjecture. In the meantime the following facts, obtained from records easily accessible, will probably be sufficient to dispose of the explanations hitherto suggested, and to show that the poker of Bringwood forest was neither a parker nor a purser.

The offices conveyed to Sir R. Harley by James I. had been, before his reign, the subject of crown grants, after the honor of Wigmore had become vested in the crown by the merger of the earldom of March in the crown. Hence, I find that in the act 13 Edward IV. (A.D. 1473), for the resumption of royal grants, there is a saving of a prior grant of the "office of keeper of oure forest or chace of Boryngwode," and of the fees for the "kepyng of the Dikes within oure counte of Hereford, parcelles of oure seid forest." (6 Rot. Parl. p. 94.)

In a similar act of resumption, 1 Henry VII., there is a like saving in favour of Thomas Grove, to whom had been granted the keepership of Boryngwood chase in "Wigmoresland," and "the pokershipp and keping of the diche of the same." The parkership of Wigmore Park is saved in the same act. (6 Rot. Parl. p. 353 and 383.)

In the first year of Henry VIII. there is a Receiver's Account of Wigmore, in which I observe the following deductions claimed in respect of the fees and salaries of officers:-

"In feodo Thomæ Grove, forestarii de Bringewod,

6l. 1s. 6d.

— ejusdem Thomæ, fossat'de Prestwode dych,


— Edm. Sharp, parcarii parci de Wiggemour,

6l. 1s. 6d.

— Thomæ Grove, pocar' omnium boscorum

in Wiggemourslonde - 30s. 4d."

There is another like account rendered in 23 & 24 Hen. VII. These, and no doubt many other accounts and documents respecting the honor of Wigmore and its appartenances, are among the Exchequer records, and we are entitled to infer from them, firstly, that a parcarius and a pocarius are two different offices; secondly, that, whether the duty of the latter was performed on the dikes or in the woods of Boringwood chase, the theory of Mr. Bolton Corney (pace cl. viri dixerim) is very deficient in probability. If the above authorities had not fallen under my notice, I should have confidently adopted the conjecture of the noble Querist, who first drew attention to the word, and, so far from considering the substitution of "poker" for "parker" an improbable blunder of the copyist, I should have pronounced it fortunate for the house of Harley that their founder had not been converted into a porcarius or pig-driver.


Pokership.—I had flattered myself that Parkership was the real interpretation of the above word, but I have once more doubts on the subject. I this morning accidentally stumbled upon the word "Porcellagium," which is interpreted in Ducange's Glossary, "Tributum ex porcis seu porcellis."

Porcarius also occurs as Porcorum custos, and mention is made of "Porcorum servitium quo quis porcos domini sui pascentes servare tenetur."

Now, considering how much value was formerly attached to the right of turning out swine in wooded wastes, during the acorn season, it seems probable that Sir R. Harley might be the king's "Porcarius," or receiver of the money paid for an annual license to depasture hogs in the royal forests; and, after all, Porkership is as like to Pokership as Parkership, and one mistake would be as easily made as the other.


Audley End, Feb. 16.

[We are enabled to confirm the accuracy of Lord Braybrooke's conjecture as to Pokership being the office conferred upon Sir Robert Harley, inasmuch as we are in expectation of receiving an account of the various forms of its name from a gentleman who has not only the ability, but also peculiar facilities for illustrating this and similar obscure terms.]

Havior—Heavier or Hever.-Supposed etymology of Havior, Heavier, and Hever, as applied by park-keepers to an emasculated male deer.—"NOTES AND QUERIES," (No. 15. p. 230.)

Pennant, in his British Zoology, 8vo. edition, 1776, vol. i. p. 38., and 8vo. edition, 1812, vol. i. p. 45., under the article, "Goat" says:—

"The meat of a castrated goat of six or seven years old, (which is called Hyfr,) is reckoned the best; being generally very sweet and fat. This makes an excellent pasty, goes under the name of rock venison, and is little inferior to that of the deer."

As Pennant was a Welchman, a scholar and a {270} naturalist, he will probably be considered good authority; and Hyfr, the most likely origin of the altered terms of the deer park-keepers.

The word occurs twice in page 61. vol. ii. of the Sportsman's Cabinet, in the article on the Stag or Red Deer, where it is printed Heavier; and it will be found also as Hever, in Mr. Jesse's Scenes and Tales of Country Life, at page 349.


Ryder Street, St. James, Feb. 11. 1850.

Mr. Halliwell gives the words haver and havering, in the same sense as havior. Are not these words identical with aver, averium, in the sense of cattle, tame beasts? Averium, from the old French, aveir, i.e. avoir, originally meant any personal property; but like catalla, chattels, it came to signify more particularly the most important part of a peasant's possessions—namely, his live stock. Thus, in the laws of William the Conqueror (Thorpe's Ancient Laws, vol. ii. p. 469.), we find:—

"Si præpositus hundredi equos aut boves aut oves aut porcos vel cujuscumque generis averia vagancia restare fecerit," &c.

The word may naturally enough have been applied to deer reduced to the state of tame and domesticated cattle.


[TREBOR furnishes us with a reference to Pegge's Anonymiana, who endeavours to show that the proper term is "halfer;" on the same principle that an entire horse is spoken of, the word being pronounced "hâver" by those who call half "hâfe," while those who pronounce half with the open a say "hauver:" while J. Westby Gibson suggests that Havior is Evir, from the Latin "Eviro, Eviratus, Eviratio," but admits that he can give no authority for the use of Evir.]

Sir W. Hamilton (No. 14. p. 216.).—Douglas says, that this Sir W. Hamilton was not son, but grandson and brother of the 1st and 2nd earls of Abercorn, his father having died vitâ patris. I therefore doubt that the inscription has been miscopied. "He was," Douglas says, "resident at Rome, on the part of the Queen Dowager;" but this could hardly be the service alluded to.


Dr. Johnson's Library (no. 14. p. 214.).—I have a copy of Dr. Johnson's Sale Catalogue. The title is as follows:

"A catalogue of the valuable Library of Books of the late learned Samuel Johnson, Esq., LL.D., deceased, which will be sold by auction (by Order of the Executors) by Mr. Christie, at his Great Room in Pall Mall, on Wednesday, February 16. 1785. and three following Days. To be viewed on Monday and Tuesday preceding the Sale, which will begin each Day at 12 o'Clock. Catalogues may be had as above."

It is a Catalogue of 28 pages and 662 lots, of which 650 are books. The twelve last are prints, chiefly "framed and glazed." The Catalogue is very rare; there is not a copy in the British Museum, and Messrs. Christie and Manson are without one. I may add, as your correspondent is curious about Johnson's Library, that I have the presentation copy to the Doctor of Twiss's Travels in Spain, with "the gift of the Author" in Johnson's handwriting, immediately beneath Twiss's MS. presentation. The Twiss was in Lot 284.



Etymology of "News."—The word "news" is not derived, as many suppose, from the adjective new, but from a practice that obtained in newspapers of an early date, of prefixing to the title the letters expressive of the cardinal points, thus:—

E. W.

meaning that their intelligence was derived from all quarters of the globe. This must, at any rate, be allowed as ingenious etymology.



(From the Latin.)

Why "golden," when that age alone, we're told,

Was blest with happy ignorance of gold—

More justly we our venal times might call

"The Golden Age," for gold is all in all.



Messrs. Sotheby and Co. will sell on Monday next two collections of Autographs; the first consisting of Autograph Letters, the property of a gentleman; which will be immediately followed by that belonging to the late Mr. Rodd, and the extensive Correspondence of the late William Upcott, Esq., comprising several thousand Autograph Letters. Mr. Rodd's collection comprises many letters of great historical and literary interest.

Messrs. Puttick and Simpson will sell by auction on Friday, March the 8th, and seven following days, the extensive and very important Stock of Books of Mr. James Carpenter, of Bond Street, who is retiring from business. The characteristics of this fine collection are the numerous books of prints and illustrated works which it contains, such as the matchless Series of Piranesi's Works, being the dedication copy to the king of Sweden: a copy of Boswell's Life of Johnson, in 8 vols. {271} folio, illustrated with nearly six hundred Portraits and Views.

We heard some time since that the long-established and highly-respectable house of Payne and Foss, of Pall Mall, had succeeded the late Mr. Rodd in the agency of purchasing for the British Museum. The rumour proved to be unfounded, and now receives a formal contradiction by the announcement that Messrs. Payne and Foss are retiring from business, and that the first portion of their extensive and valuable Stock of Books will be sold by auction by Messrs. Sotheby and Co.; the first division in a ten days' sale, commencing on the 18th and terminating on the 28th March; which will be followed by the second division, which will also occupy ten days, and commence on Monday the 8th April. The lovers of choice copies of fine editions of first-class books will have, on this occasion, such an opportunity of enriching their collections as rarely presents itself.

We have received the following Catalogues:—

"Number Two, for 1850, of John Miller's Catalogue of Books, old and new, on sale at 43. Chandos Street, Trafalgar Square."

"Catalogue of curious and rare Books, recently purchased, now on sale by George Bumstead, 205. High Holborn."

"Catalogue (No. 5.) of Books, Theological and Miscellaneous, and Catalogue (No. 6.) of Books, consisting chiefly of Foreign Literature and Theology, on sale by Andrew Clark, No. 4. City Road."

"Cheap List of useful and curious Books relating to Ecclesiastical History, Councils, Ceremonies, the Puritans, &c., on sale by S. and I. Palmer, 24. Red Lion Street, Holborn."

"A List of Books, chiefly curious ones, now selling by Thomas Kerslake, Bookseller, at No. 3. Park Street, Bristol."



(In continuation of Lists in former Nos.)












PINGRE'S ACCOUNT OF HIS VOYAGE TO RODRIGUEZ, published (?) at Paris about 1762.



BELL ON THE HAND. Bridgewater Treatises.

Odd Volumes.


*** Letters, stating particulars and lowest price. carriage free, to be sent to MR. BELL, Publisher of "NOTES AND QUERIES," 186. Fleet Street.


Among the many papers which we are unavoidably obliged to postpone are an original and inedited Letter by Horace Walpole, Mr. Singer's Reply to C.W.G. on Ælfric's Colloquies, an interesting communication from Mr. Coles respecting Arabella Stuart, a paper by Mr. Rye on the Queen of Robert Bruce, and T.S.D.'s able article on Arabic Numerals.

The Erectheum Club (like "The Parthenon") takes its name from the Erectheum at Athens.

H.M.A. declined with thanks.

X.P. is informed that the monotome edition of Boswell's Johnson edited by Croker, is not an abridgment of the larger work, but a new and thoroughly revised edition of it; and with a really good index.

To correspondents inquiring as to the mode of procuring "NOTES AND QUERIES," we have once more to explain, that every bookseller and newsman will supply it regularly, if ordered; and that gentlemen residing in the country, who may find a difficulty in getting it through any bookseller in their neighbourhood, may be supplied regularly with the stamped edition, by giving their orders direct to the publisher, MR. GEORGE BELL, 186 Fleet Street, accompanied by a Post-Office order for a quarter, 4s. 4d.; a half year, 8s. 8d.; or one year, 17s. 4d.

Errata. P. 242. col. 2. l. 11., for "coheir" read "cognate;" and line 16, for "Argidius" "Ægidius;" and p. 243, col 1. l. 35. read "anecdote of Dionysius related by Cicero and by Plutarch, in his Laconic Apophthegms, which Stobæus evidently followed."

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THE PRIMÆVAL ANTIQUITIES OF DENMARK. By J.J.A. WORSAAE, M.R.S.A., of Copenhagen. Translated and applied to the Illustration of similar Remains in England, by WILLIAM J. THOMS, ESQ., F.S.A., Secretary of the Camden Society. Illustrated with numerous Woodcuts. 8vo. 10s. 6d.

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See also Gentleman's Magazine for February, 1850.

JOHN HENRY PARKES, Oxford, and 377. Strand, London.

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A PRIEST TO THE TEMPLE; or, THE COUNTRY PARSON: his Character, and Rule of Holy Life, &c.

London: GEORGE BELL, Fleet Street. Leicester: J.S. CROSSLEY.

Footnote 1:(return)

"La précieuse géographie d'Alfred, roi d'Angleterre."—Le Comte J. Gräberg. La Scandinavie Vengée, p. 36.

Footnote 2:(return)

Cotton MSS., Tiberius, b. i. fol. 12b.

Footnote 3:(return)

Transl. of Orosius, p. 8.

Footnote 4:(return)

Inaugural Lecture, p. 72.

Footnote 5:(return)

Vita Karoli Magni, ann. 789.

Footnote 6:(return)

"Sunt et alii Slavorum populi qui inter Albiam et Oderam degunt, sicut Heveldi, qui juxta Haliolam fluvium, et Doxani, Liubuzzi, Wilini, et Stoderani, cum multis aliis."—Hist. Eccl. p. 47, 48.

Footnote 7:(return)

Annales Sangall. Brev., ann. 789.—Ann. Lauresham, &c.

Footnote 8:(return)

Vit. Kar. Mag. and Annal. Francor., ann. 822.

Footnote 9:(return)

Annal. Petav., ann 789.

Footnote 10:(return)

Chron. Slavorum, l. i, c. 2.

Footnote 11:(return)

Brodekine. A richly-gilt stuff.

Footnote 12:(return)

It appears from an entry in the preceding year, that this man was first sent to "Sentt Thomas Spittell in Soughwork," when it was discovered that he was afflicted with the leprosy, or some cutaneous disease, and immediately removed to the Lazar-house at Mile End, it being strictly forbidden that such cases should remain in the hospitals. These lazar-houses were built away from the town; one was the Lock Hospital, in Southwark; one at Kingsland, another at Knightsbridge, and that mentioned above between Mile End and Stratford. The laws were very strict in the expulsion of leprous people from the city; and if they attempted to force their way into the hospitals, they were bound fast to horses, and dragged away to the lazar-houses.

Footnote 13:(return)

The baldricke was the garter and buckle by means of which the clapper was suspended inside the bell.

Footnote 14:(return)

Harnes, or armour, which perhaps hung over some of the monuments in the church.

Footnote 15:(return)

It was about this time that clocks began to be generally used in churches (although of a much earlier invention); and in subsequent years we have several items of expenditure connected with that above mentioned. In 1595:—

"Paid for a small bell for the watche iiijs

"Paid to the smith for Iron worke to it xxd

"Paid for a waight for the Clocke wayinge

36lb and for a ringe of Iron vs."

Still, however, the hour-glass was used at the pulpit-desk, to determine the length the parson should go in his discourse; and xijd for a new hour-glass frequently occurs.

Footnote 16:(return)

Those who have access to Colgan's Acta Sanctorum Hiberniæ will see that he always spells Armagh, Ardmacha; and Durrow, Durmugia.

Footnote 17:(return)

Reports from the Commissioners of Charities b. 235. 32nd part 4.—696.

Footnote 18:(return)


Printed by THOMAS CLARK SHAW, of No. 8. New Street Square, at No. 5. New Street Square, in the Parish of St. Bride in the City of London; and published by GEORGE BELL, of No. 186. Fleet Street, in the Parish of St. Dunstan in the West, in the City of London, Publisher, at No. 186. Fleet Street aforesaid.—Saturday, February 23. 1850.