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It is a mistake, in the opinion of Mr. Douce, * to suppose that yews were planted in the churchyards for the purpose of making bows, for which the more common materials were elm and hazel. It is by no means improbable, that the superstition of our ancestors planted yews in the churchyards for their supposed virtue in warding off evil spirits, or as a protection against the fury of the winds, which might otherwise injure or unroof the sacred building. Accordingly, in a statute made in the latter part of the reign of Edward I., to prevent rectors from cutting down the trees in churchyards, we find the following passage: arbores ipsa, propter ventorum impe us, ne ecclesiis noceant, sæpe plantantur.

Convinced, as we are, that the practice of archery possesses in point of health and exercise all the diversion and advantages of field sports, without their cruelty to animals and demoralizing oppression to our fellow-creatures, we shall conclude our chapter with an extract from a writer in whose sentiments upon this subject we fully concur. “ That archery possesses many excellences as an amusement will require little trouble to prove. It is an exercise adapted to every age and every degree of strength; it is not necessarily laborious, as it may be discontinued at the moment it becomes fatiguing; a pleasure not to be enjoyed by the hunter, who, having finished his chase, perceives that he must crown his toils with an inanimate ride of forty miles to his bed. . Archery is attended with no cruelty. It sheds no innocent blood, nor does it torture harmless animals, charges of which lie heavy against some other amusements.

“ It has been said that a reward was formerly offered to him who could invent a new pleasure. Had such a reward been held forth by the ladies of the present day, he who introduced archery as a female exercise would have deservedly gained the prize. It is unfortunate that there are few diversions in the open air in which' women can join with satisfaction; and as their sedentary life renders motion necessary to health, it is to be lamented that such suitable amusements have been wanting to invite them, Archery has, however, contributed admirably to supply this

* Illustration of Shakspeare, vol. i. 396.

defect, and in a manner the most desirable that could be wished. But I do not intend to sing the praises of this elegant art in their full extent. I subjoin a wish, however, that it may be universally cultivated and approved ; and may we see the time when (with Statius) it can be said, * Pudor est nescire sagittas;' it is a reproach to be unskilful with the bow."-Moseley's Essay on Archery, p. 180.

CHAPTER XIV.

Bull-Fights and Baiting of Animals.

“Each social feeling fell, And joyless inhumanity pervades And petrifies the heart."

Thomson's Spring.

ALTHOUGH we have expressed an intention of restricting ourselves chiefly to the sports of our own country, we can hardly leave unnoticed a subject so celebrated and so long connected with romantic and chivalrous associations as the bull-fights. The Spaniards, who have always been the most celebrated for this cruel diversion, generally dedicated their bull-feasts to St. John, the Virgin Mary, &c., never seeming to entertain the smallest suspicion that they were desecrating the patron, instead of sanctifying the inhuman sport, by a conjunction so incongruous. According to some writers, the people of the Peninsula derived this sport from the Moors, among whom it was exhibited with great éclat. Dr. Plot is of opinion that the Thessalians, who first instituted the game, and of whom Julius Cæsar learned and brought it to Rome, were the origin both of the Spanish and Portuguese bull-fighting and of the English bull-baiting. In the Greek bull-fights, several of these animals were turned out by an equal number of horsemen, each combatant selecting his bull, which he never quitted till he had overpowered him. Some authors maintain, that in consequence of a violent plague at Rome, chiefly occasioned by eating bull's flesh, the Taurilia were established so early as the time of Tarquinius Superbus, who justly dedicated them to the

infernal gods. At all events, the practice maintained itself in Italy for many ages. It was prohibited by Pope Pius V., under pain of excommunication incurred ipso facto; but succeeding popes have granted several mitigations on behalf of the Torreadores.

From the following account of a bull-feast in the coliseum at Rome, 1332, extracted from Muratori by Gibbori, the reader may form some idea of the points, the ceremonies, and the danger which attended these exhibitions :“A general proclamation as far as Rimini and Ravenna invited the nobles to exercise their skill and courage in this perilous adventure. The Roman ladies were marshalled in three squadrons, and seated in three balconies, which on this day, the 3d of September, were lined with scarlet cloth. The fair Jacova di Rovere led the matrons from beyond the Tiber; a pure and native race, who still represent the features and character of antiquity. The remainder of the city was divided between the Colonna and Ursini families; the two factions were proud of the number and beauty of their female bands; the charms of Savella Ursini are mentioned with praise; and the Colonna regretted the absence of the youngest of their house, who had sprained her ancle in the garden of Nero's tower. The lots of the champions were drawn by an old ar{ respectable citizen ; and they descended into the arena or pit to encounter the wild bulls, on foot, as it should seen., with a single spear. Amid the crowd our annalist has selecced the names, colours, and devices of twenty of the mos' conspicuous knights. Several of the names are the most illustrious of Rome and the ecclesiastical state; Malatesta, Polenta, Della Valle, Cafarello, Savelli, Cappoccio, Conti, Annibaldi, Altieri, Corsi. The colours were adapted to their taste and situation; the devices are expressive of hope and despair, and breathe the spirit of gallantry and arms : "I am alone, like the youngest of the Horatii,' the confidence of an intrepid stranger: 'I live disconsolate,' a weeping widower: 'I burn under the ashes,' a discreet lover: “I adore Lavinia or Lucretia, the ambiguous declaration of a modern lover :

My faith is as pure'—the motto of a white livery: Who is stronger than myself? of a lion's hide : "If I am drowned in blood, what a pleasant death! the wish of ferocious courage. The pride or prudence of the Ursini restrained

them from the field, which was occupied by three of their hereditary rivals, whose inscriptions denoted the lofty greatness of the Colonna name : Though sad, I am strong :' • Strong as I am great :' 'If I fall (addressing himself to the spectators), you fall with me;' intimating, says the writer, that while the other families were the subjects of the Vatican, they alone were the supporters of the Capitol. -The combats of the amphitheatre were dangerous and bloody. Every champion successively encountered a wild bull, and the victory may be ascribed to the quadrupeds, since no more than eleven were left on the field, with the loss of nine wounded and eighteen killed on the side of their adversaries. Some of the noblest families might mourn, but the pomp of the funerals in the churches of St. John Lateran and St. Maria Maggiore afforded a second holyday to the people. Doubtless, it was not in such conflicts that the blood of the Romans should have been shed ; yet, in blaming their rashness, we are compelled to applaud their gallantry; and the noble volunteers who display their magnificence and risk their lives under the balconies of the fair, excite a more generous sympathy than the thousands of captives and malefactors who were reluctantly dragged to the scene of slaughter."

A striking relic of barbarity in the Spanish manners of the present day is the excessive attachment of the nation to bull-fights, a spectacle which shocks the delicacy of every other people in Europe. Many Spaniards consider this practice as the sure means of preserving that energy by which they are characterized, and of habituating them to violent emotions, which are terrible only to timid minds. But it seems difficult to comprehend what relation there is between bravery and a spectacle, where the assistants now run no danger; where the actors prove by the few accidents which befall them, that there is nothing in it very interesting; and where the unhappy victims meet only with certain death, as the reward of their vigour and courage. Another proof that these spectacles have little or no effect on the disposition of the mind is, that children, old men, and people of all ages, stations, and characters, assist at them, and yet their being accustomed to such bloody entertainments appears neither to correct their weakness and timidity, nor alter the mildness of their manners.

The bull-fights are very expensive, but they bring great gain to the undertakers. The worst places cost two or four rials, accordingly as they are in the sun or in the shade. The price of the highest is a dollar. When the price of the horses and bulls and the wages of the torreadores have been paid out of this money, the rest is generally appropriated to pious foundations; at Madrid it forms one of the principal funds of the hospital. It is only during summer that these combats are exhibited, because the season then permits the spectators to sit in the open air, and because the bulls are then more vigorous. Those which are of the best breed are condemned to this kind of sacrifice; and connoisseurs are so well acquainted with their distinguishing marks, that when a bull appears in the arena, they can mention the place where he was reared. This arena is a kind of circus, surrounded by about a dozen of seats, rising one above another, the highest of which only is covered. The boxes occupy the lower part of the edifice. In some cities, Valladolid for example, which has no place particularly set apart for these combats, the principal square is converted into a theatre; the balconies of the houses are widened so as to project over the streets which end there; and it is really a very interesting sight to see the different classes of people assembled round this square waiting for the signal when the entertainment is to commence, and exhibiting every external sign of impatience and joy. The spectacle commences by a kind of procession round the square, in which appear, both on horseback and on foot, the combatants who are to attack the fierce animal; after which two alguazils, dressed in perukes and black robes, advance with great gravity on horseback, who go and ask from the president of the entertainment an order for it to commence. signal is immediately given; and the animal, which was before shut up in a kind of hovel with a door opening into the square, soon makes his appearance. The officers of justice, who have nothing to do with the bull, presently hasten to retire, and their flight is a prelude to the cruel pleasure which the spectators are about to enjoy.

The bull, however, is received with loud shouts, and almost stunned with the noisy expression of their joy. He has to contend first with the picadores, combatanis on horse

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