Notes and Queries, Number 17, February 23, 1850 online

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* * * * *

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

* * * * *

No. 17.] Saturday, February 23. 1850. [Price Threepence. Stamped Edition 4d.

* * * * *{257}


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 antiquity[1]; 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." {258}

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 [Greek:
Beltai] - 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

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.


[1] "La précieuse géographie d'Alfred, roi d'Angleterre." - Le
Comte J. Gräberg. _La Scandinavie Vengée_, p. 36.

[2] Cotton MSS., _Tiberius_, b. i. fol. 12b.

[3] Transl. of _Orosius_, p. 8.

[4] _Inaugural Lecture_, p. 72.

[5] _Vita Karoli Magni_, ann. 789.

[6] "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.

[7] _Annales Sangall. Brev._, ann. 789. - _Ann. Lauresham_, &c.

[8] _Vit. Kar. Mag._ and _Annal. Francor._, ann. 822.

[9] _Annal. Petav._, ann 789.

[10] _Chron. Slavorum_, l. i, c. 2.

* * * * *


_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

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


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

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._

"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

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

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

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 -

"R'd of Mr. Thorowgoode for an olde font stone,
by the consente of a vestrie v's iiij'd

"R'd for the clothe of _bodkine_[11] y't Ser Roger
Marten hade before in keppinge, and now
sold by the consente of a vestry and our
mynnister iij'll vj's viij'd

"The Payments as followithe: -

"P'd to the wife of John Bakone _gwder_ of the
Lazer cotte at Myle End[12] in full of her due {261}
for keppinge of Evan Redde y't was Mr.
Hariots mane till his departtur and for his
Shete and Burialle as dothe apere xl's viij'd

"P'd for makinge of the Longe pillowe & the
pulpit clothe ij's

"P'd for a yard and a nale of fustane for the same
pillowe xvj'd

"P'd for silke to the same pillowe xvj'd

"P'd for xj'li of fethers for the same pillowe, at
v'd iiij's vij'd

"P'd for brede and beer that day the quen cam
in xij'd

"P'd for candells and mendinge the _baldrocke_[13] vj'd

"P'd for paynttinge y'e stafe of the survayer iij'd

"P'd for mendynge the lytell bell iij's

"Pd to Mr. Sanders for the yearly rent of the
Laystall and skowringe the _harnes_[14] for
his yer iij's viij'd

"P'd to Mr. Wright for the makinge of the Cloke[15]
mor than he gatheride, agred one at the laste
vestrie xvij's

"P'd to Peter Medcalfe for mending the Cloke
when it neade due at o'r Ladies Daye laste
past in Anno 1581 iij's

"P'd for entringe this account xx'd."


Overseer of St. Antholin, 1850.

[11] _Brodekine_. A richly-gilt stuff.

[12] 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.

[13] The _baldricke_ was the garter and buckle by means of
which the clapper was suspended inside the bell.

[14] _Harnes_, or armour, which perhaps hung over some of the
monuments in the church.

[15] 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_ iiij's

"Paid to the smith for Iron worke to it xx'd

"Paid for a waight for the Clocke wayinge
36'lb and for a ringe of Iron v's."

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

* * * * *



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

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Online LibraryVariousNotes and Queries, Number 17, February 23, 1850 → online text (page 1 of 4)