John James Raven.

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BOOKS



UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORN

AT LOS ANGELES i




THE ANTIQUARY'S BOOKS

GENERAL EDITOR : J. CHARLES COX, LL.D., F.S.A.



THE BELLS OF ENGLAND




FOR.Ml.Nc; I HE MOULD

I'AKT OF THK ItELI, KOU.NDER's WINDOW IN YORK CATHEDUAI.



THE

BELLS OF ENGLAND

BY

J. J. RAVEN, D.D., F.S.A.,

OF EMMANUEL COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE, VICAR OF FRESSINGFIELD
AND HONORARY CANON OF NORWICH CATHEDRAL



WITH SIXTY ILLUSTRATIONS



• ' > -• ,



METHUEN & CO.

36 ESSEX STREET W.C

LONDON



First Published in i()o6



cc



CONTENTS



CHAPTER I

, PAOE

Early History i

" Small beginnings" — Bronze — Its Hebrew and Greek equivalents —
The Old Testament — Homer — Hesiod — Herodotus — Pomponius Mela —
Dionysius Periegetes — Eustathius on Cornwall — Crotals — Basque names
of metals — Pliny — Copper in Cumberland — Names for bells — Tintinna-
buhim, Sqiiilla, Bell, Caii/pana, and A''ola — Their derivations — Walafridus
Strabo — Polydore Vergil — Chladni, etc. — Gerard Voss — Holyoke —
Martial — Hieronymus Magius — Historians of the present day — Analysis
of the following chapters.



CHAPTER II
The British Period 14

Variation in civilization among the British tribes — Routes— Essedjse —
Small bells, open and closed — Crotals at the end of spears — Bells of the
Irish type — ^ x"^'"'" 0a.ra viii. 27, where we read of "vessels of
shining copper") by "brass" in our iMiglish versions, may
be generally regarded as equivalent to "bronze,"

Yet there are exceptions. It must be "copper" in Job
xxviii. 2, where the Authorized and Revised Versions agree in
rendering the original : "Iron is taken out of the earth, and
brass is molten out of the stone," with the alternative of
"dust" for "earth." The mention of a mine in the previous
verse is conclusive here, as in "out of whose hills thou mayest
dig brass " (Deut. viii. 9). But cxccplio frobat reguhini, and
the general result is not to be mistaken. The root means a
serpent, possibly from its deadly hiss, and the word with /
often added seems to have been transferred to the metal, its
burnished tint being snake-like. In passing from the word
nahasJi, I may be forgiven for noting how the name Serpent
was used for the Ammonite King (i Sam. xi. i), even as
Ortiic was adopted as a name of terror by our wild
Scandinavian ancestors. When we come to the other
element in the bronze compound, England begins to assume
a greater importance. '?n3, the Hebrew equivalent for "tin,"
occurs five times in the Old Testament, and once in the
Apocrj'phal Wisdom of Jcsiis t/ie So?i of SiracJi. In every
place but one it is rendered by K-naa/Vf/ioc in the Septuagint.
The solitary exception is Isa. i. 25, where the Alexandrians



i



EARLY HISTORY 5

gave an interpretation rather than a translation of " I will
take away all thy tin," rendering the metal by what it was
intended to represent, namely the unrighteous (dvnfimxj).
When the subsequent translators, Aquila, Theodotion, and
Synimachus, dealt with the passage, they returned to the
letter of the text, and read Karfmripur here as in the other
I)laces.

The word is also Homeric. Beyond its whiteness, duct-
ability, and suitableness for ornamentation, not much about
it can be gathered from the Iliad. It does not occur in the
Odyssey.

The one passage in Hesiod {Thcoj^nis, 857, etc.) in which
it is found is important for our purpose. Mr. Gladstone
assigns to Homer a date about 1 200 B.C., contemporary
with Gideon. Hesiod is supposed to have lived some five
centuries after Homer, about the time of the I'rophet Isaiah.
His poems certainly display a more extensive knowledge
of the earth than that which was possessed by the epic
chronicler of 'i'njy town, and his information cxtcutls more
over Western Europe. He is describing the destruction of
the Titan Typhocus by Zeus, how the earth burned with a
mighty reek and was melted, being heated, like KiKTrrhifHtr, by
the art of the vigorous and by the well-channelled melting-
pit.* In another passage he describes a port represented
with the help of melted tin on the Shield of Hercules.f

As kasdir is the Arabic for " tin," some would derive
KdarrtTifxtr from it, suggesting that afterwards, when the
supply came from Cornwall, the name was transferred t



Online LibraryJohn James RavenThe bells of England → online text (page 1 of 30)