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and what one hopes is that that which still remains may be preserved with a view to the collection of such materials as I have suggested.
I will not venture to go into the various questions which Polwhele raises with regard to the Druidical remains on Dartmoor. I am happy to find that the Association are going to pay a visit to that locality, and that a most interesting and valuable paper, by sir Gardner Wilkinson, upon that very extraordinary district will be read in the course of the proceedings. I feel, therefore, quite satisfied that we shall have the matter thoroughly exhausted, and it would be wasting your time if I were to offer any observations upon it. Only let me say first, as I have expressed the hope that you will not be led away by the beauty of the scenery in other parts of the county, so now let me wish that when you are upon Dartmoor you may have clear weather, for.if there should be a mist it is very little that you will see. Secondly, it is obvious to all that we must be on our guard, in visiting such places, not to confound the curious formations of nature with works of the Druids. No doubt, as was said by one of our writers, Dartmoor is a natural Druidical temple,-one great mass of logan stones and rock idols, and pillars and basins; and it requires the critical faculty to consider how much of this is natural, and how much artificial. Though, again, it does not follow from these rocks being natural that they were not used by the Druids as their place of worship. But we must neither be ready to take a natural rock as an artificial idol, nor, on the other hand, entirely to disregard any tradition which connects the natural rock with some Druidical ceremonies. There is no doubt that in these stones and collections much will be found to remind you of what were the habits of the earlier and eastern nations-much to remind you in these monumental pillars and cairns and stones, of the Jews, and of the records of the Old Testament, where we read of the pillars of Jacob and Laban, and the pillars put up by the Israelites when they crossed the Jordan, and many others, which will readily occur to you. No doubt, if the Phenicians did impress upon our early ancestors any of their own system of worship we may expect to find on Belston and such places stones to the memory or for the worship of the god Belus, or some other of the Phoenician deities. But upon all these points you will exercise strict inquiry. I must apologise for having ventured so far into the matter. In opening the subject as one of interest, it is rather for the purpose of exciting those among you who do not know Dartmoor, to go and see for yourselves, than to venture to suggest any theory.
Even upon Dartmoor, though I said it was chiefly a place connected with the archæology of wonder, even there we find a good deal of human interest—an interest of a much more modern kind than that which relates to Druidical remains. There is that curious place, Crockern Tor. It is a place in which we have a more general interest, because there the Stannary parliaments were held. This opens up a curious chapter of history. They were parliaments that used to meet in the open air, in this wild spot, many miles from any town.
town. There was the judge's chair, with the steps to go up to it, a good deal destroyed of late years. Then, there was a cellar underneath, in which the parliament used to keep their wine, a sort of refreshment room for the occasion. There they used to meet and hold their parliament and make laws for the Stannaries, that is, for the tinners. Representatives were sent from four towns in Devonshire, Chagford, Ashburton, Tavistock, and Lydford—we do not know of any Cornish mines being represented-and they held their Stannary parliament on Crockern Tor. A most interesting chapter in the history of Devonshire might be devoted to these Stannary Courts, and to the history of the tin trade, which must form a prominent feature in any
such work. The tin trade carries us back, as we have seen, to the time of the Carthaginian intercourse; and coming down to later times, we meet with charters of king John respecting the privileges of the duchy of Cornwall
, and of Richard, king of the Romans, first duke of Cornwall. Then there were disputes between the clergy and the dukes of Cornwall with reference to some questions at issue between them. Altogether you would find it a most interesting chapter, illustrating English history below the surface of affairs from the time of king John even to the present, because the Stannary courts still form an anomalous and abnormal feature in our system. The manner in which the tinners exercised their powers at these Stannary parliaments was very remarkable. There is a curious statute passed by them in the time of Henry VII, when Arthur, eldest son of Henry, was duke of Cornwall
. The statute as given by Mr. Rowe is very curious. It contains a variety of provisions, one of which is to exclude all persons from owning mines who were possessed of £10 a-year; also all clergy and officials of the duchy. Another very singular clause prohibited all persons learned in the law from practising in the Stannary court. Mr. Rowe apparently does not approve of that clause. He speaks of it as strong evidence that it was a parliamentum indoctum. Whether it was altogether wise or unwise to prohibit the lawyers from practising in these courts one hardly knows. But at all events, it connects itself with other matters, with regard to which there can be no question. You have all heard of Lydford law. Lydford, which was the old prison for the Stannaries, seems to have been a very wretched place.
“We oft have heard of Lydford law,
And sit in judgment after." Lydford appears to have been a place very much abused. Even in Edward III's time, petitions were presented against the system by which debtors imprisoned in Lydford Castle were kept there ten years. The gaol delivery being only once in ten years, it was a serious kind of imprisonment. Shortly after the time of the statute I have mentioned, the Stannaries parliament actually ventured to encroach upon the privileges of the House of Commons. We are told that Mr. Strode, of Newnham, member for Plympton Erle, having exerted himself in parliament to prevent the tin miners from blocking up the harbours with their streaming, the tinners proceeded against him for some imaginary breach of the Stannary laws, threw him into Lydford gaol, and kept him there for some time. The result was that parliament was obliged to interfere, and a statute was passed crippling and limiting the power of the Stannary parliaments for the future. These I mention as instances of the curious circumstances which you may bring to light by a good history of the Stannaries, including this place at Lydford, and other matters connected with it. And here I may observe that I understand we, in this county, though not very rich in stone works, buildings, and so forth, of great antiquity, have one great treasure in a good collection of records, especially in Exeter. I am told that Exeter is very rich in records; and certainly the inhabitants ought to take steps for collecting, publishing, and making them known for the good of the city. Possibly among other records might be found some bearing upon this question of the Stannary parliaments. There is one other point. I have said there are many things of interest on Dartmoor. There is one in particular. In other parts of England you find better remains of religious buildings, but one thing on Dartmoor is very interesting and very peculiar—that is, the remains of the old huts, the habitations of the early Britons. You find at Grimspound walled enclosures, containing circular foundations of huts. Nothing remains but the foundations, but these undoubtedly appear to have been the huts of the early Britons. It is interesting when you consider that you have there the earliest habitations known to exist in ths country. The poet of the moor, Carrington, says :
“ The moor boasts not
Here, then, we have the remains of our very earliest ancestors. We find nothing but stone foundations, nothing of the superstructure. Perhaps the superstructure was of less permament material than the foundation; if so, then comes the question what could it have been?
That leads me to mention the name of another departed friend, Mr. Richard Ford. You remember his very interesting article upon “ Cob Walls.” There is a great deal of learning in the article, which appeared in the Quarterly Review twenty years ago. It may have faded from the memory of some, but it is quite worth while to refresh your recollection of it. He traces the origin of cob to the very earliest times ; and he traces it, curiously enough, from the
It is a very
Phænicians along both sides of the Mediterranean sea, to Carthage and to Spain ; and then he brings it over, leaps over, from the pillars of Hercules to the south-west of England. One does not know very much of it; but still these are so many straws, all seeming to set one way. Here there certainly does seem some reason to suppose that this institution (for it is really a county institution of cob walls may have come to us from these same people, the Phoenicians. If we go further into this matter we find other things that may appear too trifling to mention, but which still suggest the idea that there is something of an eastern origin in many of our practices. There is one matter which, under any circumstances, I recommend our visitors to make themselves acquainted with, whether it is of Phænician antiquity or not-I mean our clouted cream. good thing in itself; therefore they will not be doing any harm in investigating it rather carefully. But it is said that clouted cream is to be found nowhere except in the West of England and in the neighbourhood of Tyre. There are some curious little circumstances connected with it. We know the old name of cheese, which appears to have been something like compressed milk, is tupos or Tyre; and again, butter, Bourupov, which is a compound of Bous, and Tupos. Then, in the composition of the stuff which they make in India, ghee, they put in sour milk, called “ tyre.” A description is given in one of the ancient writers, Pliny, I think, of the way of making butter,, and of a substance which he calls oxygala, a very close relative of clouted cream. He mentions that butter was not originally known to the Greeks or Romans, who acquired it from the barbarous nations. According to his description, the ancients made oxygala exactly in the way that we make clouted cream, by warming the milk over the fire. So there are two or three little matters which seem to connect Tyre and its neighbourhood with the clouted cream of Devonshire. Then there is another matter one may mention. I believe there have been discovered, in some old barrows, especially on Haldon, remains of pottery, some of which have had a resemblance to Eastern pottery; and, among other things, remains of glass and glass beads. Now glass was one of the earliest manufactures of Tyre; and here again is one of those little indications which seem to connect us with eastern nations. I dare say half these