صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني
[ocr errors]

person of rank, and that she should be happened is still known by the name of
handsomely rewarded, but that there were Darrell's hill : a spot to be dreaded by
reasons for keeping the affair a strict the peasant whom the shades of evening
secret, and, therefore, she must submit to have overtaken on his way.*
be blindfolded, and to be conducted in
that condition to the bed-chamber of the

NATURALISTS' CALENDAR.
lady. After proceeding in silence for Mean Temperature. . 38. 67.
many miles through rough and dirty lanes,
they stopped, and the midwife was led

December 17. into a house, which, from the length of her walk through the apartment, as well

COUNTRY MANSIONS. as the sounds about her, she discovered to During the reign of Henry VIII., and be the seat of wealth and power. When even of Mary, they were, if we except the bandage was removed from her eyes, their size, little better than cottages, being she found herself in a bed-chamber, in thatehed buildings, covered on the outside which were the lady, on whose account she - with the coarsest clay, and lighted only had been sent for, and a man of haughty by lattices. When Harrison wrote, in the and ferocious aspect. The lady gave age of Elizabeth, though the greater numbirth to a fine boy. Immediately the ber of manor-houses still remained framed man commanded the midwife to give him of timber, yet he observes, “ such as be the child, and, catching it from her, he latelie builded, are com'onlie either of hurried across the room, and threw it bricke or hard stone, or both; their roomes on the back of the fire, that was blazing large and comelie, and houses of office in the chimney. The child, however, was further distant from their lodgings.” The "strong, and by its struggles rolled itself old timber mansions, too, were then off upon the hearth, when the ruffian covered with the finest plaster, which, again seized it with fury, and, in spite of says the historian, “ beside the delectable the intercession of the midwife, and the whitenesse of the stuffe itselfe, is laied on more piteous entreaties of the mother, so even and smoothlie, as nothing in my thrust it under the grate, and raking the judgment can be done with more exactlive coals upon it, soon put an end to its nesse :" and at the same time, the winlife. The midwife, after spending some dows, interior decorations, and furniture, time in affording all the relief in her were becoming greatly more useful and power to the wretched mother, was told elegant. “Of old time our countrie that she must be gone. Her former con- houses," continues Harrison, " instead of ductor appeared, who again bound her glasse did use much lattise, and that made eyes, and conveyed her behind him to her either of wicker or fine rifts of oke in own home; he then paid her handsomely, chekerwise, I read also that some of the and departed. The midwife was strongly better sort, in and before the time of the agitated by the horrors of the preceding Saxons, did make panels of horne instead night; and she immediately made a de- of glasse, and fix them in woodden calmes. position of the fact before a magistrate. But as horne in windows is now quite Two circumstances afförded hopes of de- laid downe in everie place, so our lattises tecting the house in which the crime had are also growne into lesse use, because been committed ; one was, that the mid- glasse is come to be so plentifull, and wife, as she sat by the bed-side, had, with within a verie litile so good cheape if not a view to discover the place, cut out a better then the other. The wals of our piece of the bed-curtain, and sown 'it in houses on the inner sides in like sort be again; the other was, that as she had either hanged with tapisterie, arras worke, descended the staircase, she had counted or painted cloths, wherein either diverse the steps. Some suspicions fell upon one histories, or hearbes, beasts, knots, and Darrell, at that time the proprietor of such like are stained, or else they are Littlecote-house, and the domain arouņd seeled with oke of our owne, or wainescot it. The house was examined, and iden- brought hither out of the east countries, tified by the midwife, and Darrell was, whereby the roomes are not a little comtried at Salisbury for the murder. By manded, made warme, and much more corrupting his judge, he escaped the sen close than otherwise they would be. As tence of the law; but broke his neck for stooves we have not hitherto used by a fall from his horse in hunting, in a

In Dr. Drake's “Shakspeare and liis Tiines, few months after. The place where this from sir Walter Scott's “Rokeby."

[ocr errors]

Oxford Terra ends.

them greatlie, yet doo they now begin to

NATURALISTS' CALENDAR. be made in diverse houses of the gentrie. Mean Temperature ... 39. 50. Like in the houses of knights, gentlemen, &c. it is not geson to behold generallie

December 18. their great provision of Turkie worke, pewter, brasse, fine linen, and thereto costlie cupbords of plate, worth five or six hundred or a thousand pounds, to be

OLD ENGLISH Living. deerned by estimation.” The house of every country-gentleman relates Harrison, was “ foure, five, or six

The usual fare of country-gentlemen, of property included a neat chapel and a dishes, when they have but small resort,". spacious hall; and where the estate and and accordingly, we find that Justice establishment were considerable, the man

Shallow, when he invites Falstaffe to dinsion was divided into two parts or sides, one for the state or banqueting-rooms, pigeons, Davy; a couple of short-legged

ner, issues the following orders : Some and the other for the household; but in hens; a joint of mutton; and any pretty general, the latter, except in baronial residences, was the only part to be met

little tiny kickshaws, tell William Cook." with, and when complete, had the addi- festivals, the profusion and cost of the

But on feast-days, and particularly on tion of parlours ; thus Bacon, in his Essay table were astonishing. Harrison observes, on Building, describing the household that the country-gentlemen and merchants side of a mansion, says, “I wish it divided

contemped butcher's meat on such occaat the first into a hall, and a chappell, sions, and vied with the nobility in the with a partition between, both of good production of rare and delicate viands, of state and bignesse ; and those not to goe which he gives a long list; and Massinall the length, but to have, at the further

ger says, end, a winter and a summer parler, both faire : and under these roomes a faire and Their thirty-pound butter'd eggs, their pies of

" Men may talk of country Christmasses, large cellar, sunke under ground: and

carp's tongues, likewise, some privie kitchens, with but. Their pheasants drench'd with ambergris, the teries and pantries, and the like.” It was the custom also to have windows opening of three fat wethers bruised for gravy, to from the parlours and passages into the Make sauce for a single peacock; yet their chapel, hall, and kitchen, with the view

feasts of overlooking or controlling what might Were fasts, compared with the city's.” be going on; a trait of vigilant caution,

City Mallam, act ii. sc. l. which may still be discovered in some of It was the custom in tbe houses of the our ancient colleges and manor-houses. country-gentlemen to retire after dinner,

The hall of the country squire was the which generally took place about eleveu usual scene of eating and hospitality, at in the morning, to the garden-bower, or the upper end of which was placed the an arbour in the orchard, in order to parorsille, or high table, a little elevated take of the banquet or dessert ; thus Shalabove the floor, and here the master of low, addressing Falstaffe after dinner, the mansion presided, with an aythority, exclaims, “ Nay, you shall see mine orif not a state, which almost equalled that chard: where, in an arbour, we will eat a of the potent baron. The table was di- last year's pippin of my own graffing, vided into upper and lower messes, by a with a dish of carraways, and so forth.” huge 'saltcellar, and the rank and conse- From the banquet it was usual to retire to quence of the visitors were marked by evening prayer, and thence to supper, the situation of their seats above and between five and six o'clock; for, in Shakbelow the saltcellar; a custom which not speare's time, there were seldom more only distinguished the relative dignity of than two meals--dinner and supper; the guests, but extended likewise to the “ heretofore," remarked Harrison, “chere nature of the provision, the wine fre- hath beene much more time spent in eatquently circulating only above the salt- ing and drinking than commonlie is in cellar, and the dishes below it being of a these daies; for whereas of old we had coarser kind than those near the head of breakfasts in the forenoone, beverages or the table.*

nuntions after dinner, and thereto reare suppers generallie when it was time to go to rest. Now these od repasts, thanked

[ocr errors]

carcasses

Dr. Drake

[ocr errors]

be God, are verie well left, and ech one clown, and differs only in the stuff of his in manner (except here and there some clothes, not the stuff of himself; for be yoonge hungrie stomach that cannot fast bare the king's sword before he had arms till dinner time) contenteth himselfe with to wield it; yet, being once laid o'er the dinner and supper onelie. The nobilitie, shoulder with a knighthood, he finds the gentlemen, and merchantmen, especiallie herald his friend. His father was a man at great meetings, doo sit commonlie till of good stock, though but a tapper or two or three of the clocke at afternoone, usurer : he purchased the land, and his so that with manie it is an hard matter to son the title. He has doffed off the name rise from the table to go to evening praier, of a country fellow, but the look not so and returne from thence to come time easy; and his face still bears a relish of enough to supper."

churne-milk. He is guarded with more The supper, which, on days of festivity, gold lace than all the gentlemen of the was often protracted to a late hour, and country, yet his body makes his clothes often, too, as substantial as the dinner, still out of fashion. His house-keeping Was succeeded, especially at Christmas, is seen much in the distinct families of by gambols of various sorts; and some- dogs, and serving-men attendant on their times the squire and his family would kennels, and the deepness of their throats mingle in the amusements, or, retiring to is the depth of his discourse. A hawk be the tapestried parlour, would leave the esteems the true burden of nobility, and hall to the more boisterous mirth of their is exceeding ambitious to seem delighted household ; then would the blind harper, in the sport, and have his fist gloved with who sold his fit of mirth for a groat, be his jesses. A justice of peace he is to introduced, either to provoke the dance, domineer in his parish, and do his neighor to rouse their wonder by his minstrelsy; bour wrong with more right. He will be his “ matter being, for the most part, drunk with his hunters for company, and stories of old time,-as the tale of sir stain bis gentility with droppings of ale. Topas, the reportes of Bevis of South. He is fearful of being sheriff of the shire ampton, Guy of Warwicke, Adam Bell, by instinct, and dreads the assize week as and Clymme of the Clough, and such much as the prisoner. In sum, he's but other old romances or historical rimes, a clod of his own earth, or his land is the made purposely for recreation of the com- dunghill, and he the cock that crows over mon people, at Christmas dinners and it; and commonly his race is quickly brideales.”

run, and his children's children, though The posset, at bed-time, closed the they scape hanging, return to the place joyous day—a custom to which Shak- from whence they came." speare has occasionally alluded : thus Lady Macbeth says of the “ surfeited

NATURALISTS CALENDAE. grooms," “ I have drugg'd their possets;" Mean Temperature ...38 · 40. Mr. Quickly tells Rugby, “ Go; and we'll have a posset fort soon at night, in

December 20. faith, at the latter end of a sea-coal fire ; "

Ember Week. See rol. i. and Page, cheering Falstaffe, exclaims, “ Thou shalt eat a posset to-night at my house." Thomas Heywood, a contempo

AN OLD ENGLISH SQUIRE. rary of Shakspeare, has particularly no Mr. Hastings, an old gentleman of anticed this refection as occurring just before cient times in Dorsetshire, was low of bed-time: “ Thou shalt be welcome to stature, but strong and active, of a ruddy beef and bacon, and perhaps a bag-pud- complexion, with flaxen hair. His clotbes ding; and my daughter Nell shall pop a were always of green cloth, his house was posset upon thee when thou goest to bed."* of the old fashion; in the midst of a large

park, well stocked with deer, rabbits, and NATURALISTS CALENDAR.

fish-ponds. He had a long, Darrow bowl Mean Temperature 39. 35. ing-green in it; and used to play with

round sand bowls. Here, too, he had a December 19.

banqueting-room built, like a stand, in a

large tree. He kept all sorts of hounds, AN UPSTART.

that ran buck, fox, hare, otter, and badger; Bishop Earle says, “ he is a holiday and had hawks of all kinds, both long

and short winged. . His great hall was

.

• Dr. Drake.

commonly strewed with' marrow bones; cles. He got on horseback without help; and full of hawk-perches, hounds, and rode to the death of the stag, till he spaniels, and terriers. The upper end of was past four-score.* it was hung with fox-skins, of this and Anciently it was the custom with many the last year's killing. Here and there a country gentlemen to spend their Christpole-cat" was intermixed; and hunters' mas in London. poles in great abundance. The parlour was a large room, completely furnished in

NATURALISTS' CALENDAR, the same style. On a broad hearth, paved

Mean Temperature......38: 17. with brick, lay some of the choicest terriers, hounds, and spaniels. One or two of the great chairs had litters of cats in them, which were not to be disturbed.

December 21. Of these, three or four always attended

St. Thomas's Day. him at dinner; and a little white wand lay by his trencher, to defend it if they were Now is a busy day in London, for wardtoo troublesome In the windows, which motes are held in the city by the aldermen were very large, lay his arrows, cross- of every ward, “ for the election of officers bows, and other accoutrements. The for the year ensuing;" and hence, in the corners of the room were filled with his social public rooms of the citizens, there best hunting and hawking poles. His is great debate this evening, on the merits oyster table stood at the lower end of the of the common-council-men returned room, which was in constant use twice a without opposition, or on the qualificaday all the year round; for he never

tions of candidates who contest the poll failed to eat oysters both at dinner and for two days longer. The “ Lumbersupper, with which the neighbouring town Troop" muster strong at their head-quarof Pool supplied him. At the upper end Eers near Gough-square; the "codgers” of the room stood a small table with a enlighten each other and their

pipes double desk; one side of which held a in Bride-lane; the “ Counsellors under church bible, the other the book of the Cauliflower” hold divided council, martyrs. On different tables in the room they know where; and the “free and lay hawks' hoods, bells, old hats, with easy Johns” are to night more free than their crowns thrust in, full of pheasant easy. These societies are under currents eggs; tables, dice, cards, and store of that set in strong, and often turn the tide tobacco pipes. At one end of this room of an election in favour of some “good was a door, which opened into a closet, fellow," who is good no where but in where stood bottles of strong beer and “sot's-hole.” wine; which never came out but in single And now the “ gentlemen of the inglasses, which was the rule of the house; quest," chosen“ at the church in the for he never exceeded himself, nor per- morning, dine together as the first impormitted others to exceed. Answering to tant duty of their office; and the rethis closet was a door into an old chapel, elected ward-beadles are busy with the which had been long disused for devo- fresh chosen constables; and the watchtion; but in the pulpit, as the safest men are particularly civil to every place, was always to be found a cold “ drunken gentleman” who happens to chine of beef, a venison pasty, a gammon look like one of the new authorities. And of bacon, or a great apple-pie, with thick now the bellman, who revives the history crust well baked. His table cost him not and poetry of his predecessors, will vomuch, though it was good to eat at. His ciferate sports supplied all but beef and mutton;

On St. Thomas's Day. except on Fridays, when he had the best of fish. He never wanted a London pud- My masters all, this is St. Thomas' Day, ding, and he always sang it in with “ My And Christmas now can't be far off, you'll sayo part lies therein-a.” He drank a glass or I hope such good men will be chosen there,

But when you to the Ward-motes do repair, two of wine at meals; put sirup of gilly- As constables for the ensuing year flowers into his sack; and had always a As will not grutch the watchmen good strong tun glass of small beer standing by him, beer.t which he often stirred about with rosemary. He lived to be a hundred; and

• Dr. Drake; from Hutchins's Dorestshire, never lost his eye-sight, norused specta † Bellman's Treasury, 1707.

Or,

custom, I have no doubt but it will be Upon the Constables first going out. very acceptable to your readers, and to The world by sin is so degenerate grown,

none more than to Scarce can we strictly call our own, our own;

Your obliged friend, But by the patronage your watch affords,

W. W.
The thief in vain shall 'tempt the trades-
man's boards:

NATURALISTS' CALENDAR.
Their nightly ease enjoys each happy pair, Mean Temperature ...37•17.
Secure as those who first in Eden were :
When willing quires of angels, as they slept,
O'er their soft slumbers watchful centry kept.*

December 22.

CARD PLAYING.
Dolging Day.

As on this prevalent custom of the sea

son there have been remarks, an anecdote To the Editor of the Every-Day Book. from the Worcester Journal of 1760, be

Maidstone, 20th Dec. 1825. fore servants' vails were abolished,' and Sir,-There is a custom prevalent in soon after the battle of Minden, may be

added. this neighbourhood, and without doubt at other places, to which I beg to call your

At a young lady's rout there appeared a attention. The subject to which I allude card hung to each of the candlesticks, is the annual solicitation for charity with these words, “ No card money, but on St. Thomas's day. It has taken place you may speak to the drummer." In a here from time immemorial; consequenily corner of a room stood the figure of a my object in writing is to request you

drummer on a box, with a hole in the top will favour us in your instructive miscel

to receive money, and the figure held a lany, with the origin of the custom, if paper in its hand containing a dialogue possible. I shall relate a few instances between John and Dick, two of the lady's of its prevalency which come within my servants, wherein they muțually agreed, own knowledge.

Their wages being fully suficient to At Loose, near Maidstone, Mr. T. defray all their reasonable demands, to Charlton gives the poor of the parish dispose of the card money as a token of certain quantities of wheat, apportioned

their regard to the Minden heroes; to their families, in addition to which, his and, with their good young lady's condaughters give the widows a new flannel sent, appointed the drummer to be their petticoat each ; who, at the same time, go

receiver." to the other respectable inhabitants of the

NATURALISTS' CALENDAR. place to solicit the usual donation, and it is not an uncommon thing for a family

Mean Temperature ... 38.37. to get in this way six or seven shillings. This custom is also prevalent at Linton,

Bereinber 23. an adjoining parish; and I am informed

THE CHRISTMAS DAYS. that lord Cornwallis, who resides there, intends giving to the resident poor some For the Every-Day Book. thing very considerable. At Barming, C. Whittaker, esq. is provided with 100 Christmas and its festivities are approach

Symptoms of the returning season of loaves to distribute to the resident poor ing; for the rustics are standing at the on this day, which to my own knowledge street-corners with boughs of clustering is annual on his part; they likewise go berry-holly with pointed leaves, glossy to the other respectable inhabitants, who laurel, and the pink-eyed lauristina Sthe also give their alms in the way they think cheesemonger perks” a dandy sprig of best.

evergreen in the centre of his half butter It may not be amiss to say, that the tub, and hangs the griskins and chines at custom here is known by the name of his doorposts: the show of over-fed beasts

Doleing," and the day is called “ Dole- ' is advertised, and graziers and come-uping-day."

to-tcwn farmers, loiter here to see the Ifany of your correspondents, or yourself

, prize-cattle and prizes adjudged to the can throw any light on this very ancient best, feeders: butchers begin to clear all

obstructions, and whiten their shambles, * Bellman's Treasury, 1707.

and strew sawdust on the pavement, and

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
« السابقةمتابعة »