« السابقةمتابعة »
of the good understanding existing between him and his mules. Certain odd phrases he addressed to them, and peculiar interjections he emitted, had a very stimulating effect on them, and the only kind of obstinacy these good, cautious creatures exhibited on their journey was that of being obstinately bent on carrying us safely to our restingplace, and that they happily accomplished.
If in that bright sunny clime, and from so elevated a spot as our quarters at Desterro, to behold morning spread on the mountains be a glorious sight, it is, perhaps, even a more glorious one to behold at departing day the gorgeous coloured splendour that suffuses earth and sky; the golden hue glimmering on the summits of the rose and violet-tinted mountain peaks, and fading gradually away in the short twilight, when the evening star ushers in the bewitching beauty of night. How delicious then the perfume-laden breeze in the valley of the Alva! How balmy the air, how heavenly the calm of the evening hour, so unlike the weird silence of the bleak wild region above ! How pleasant, too, after the day's fatigue, to repose one's weary frame, even on a couch so little luxurious as the straw mattress and pillow of the sacristan's house.
Next morning we crossed the serra, and went down by a rather steep ravine to Covilhã; the only damage we sustained being a few rents in our clothing and a few scratches on the hands and face. All was bustle and activity at the picturesquely situated hill town of Covilhã, which has 15,000 inhabitants, who make all the brown cloth and velveteen worn in Portugal, and the frontier towns of Spain. It is a wonderfully thriving place; manufactories, machinery, water-mills, are everywhere. The hill-side is covered with dwellings large and small; but the town has the grimy hue of a manufacturing colony, in spite of its charming surroundings. It has a very tolerable inn, where plenty of fine trout may always be had fresh from the river. Of poultry, too, there is a good supply, and of fruit and flowers an abundance. At Covilhã we took horses and engaged a new guide. Thence we traversed the picturesquely wild and beautiful valley of the Zezere; the district of Pedrogão, the scenery of which is sublimely grand, and the exquisitely lovely Ponte de Cabril—beauty spots of the earth that it is “a joy for ever” to have gazed upon—and arrived at Abrantes on the sixteenth day from that on which we set out from Coimbra.
BY WILLIAM ANDREWS, F.R.Hist.Soc.
"HE institution of places of protection known as Sanctuaries
dates back to an early period. We find it recorded in the Bible that Moses, in pursuance of Divine direction, appointed cities of refuge, “that the slayer might. flee thither which should kill his neighbour unawares, and hated him not in times past; and that fleeing to one of these cities he might live.” The original intention was that the manslayer who by misfortune or by accident had killed a fellow-creature, should not be rashly put to death in personal vindictiveness, but be brought to cool and impartial trial for his act. In heathen countries, we are told, the temples and sacred enclosures were appointed as asyla to those who fled to them for safety; and it is most probable that a similar privilege was transferred to Christian churches, by general usage, long before it was sanctioned by distinct law. It is asserted that in the second century of our era King Lucius introduced the Sanctuary into Britain, but we have not any historic evidence of the fact. We find, however, so early as the year 693, at a synod of the great and wise men of the kingdom under Ina, King of West Saxons, it was decreed that if anyone accused of a capital crime took refuge in a church, his life should be spared, but that he should make compensation as the justice of the case might require ; and if the offence were deserving only of stripes, the stripes should be remitted. In the year 887, by the laws of Alfred the Great, the privilege of sanctuary was permitted to the perpetrator of any small offence, for three nights, if he fled to a church. This was to give him time to provide for himself or compound for his crime. It is stated that if anyone violated the sanctuary by inflicting bonds, wounds, or blows upon the refugee, he was compelled to pay the price set on the life of a man, and the sum of one hundred and twenty shillings (a large amount in those days) to the officiating ministers in the church.
The law of sanctuary was more clearly determined in the fourth year of the reign of William the Conqueror, and its privileges in some instances were remarkable. We have a good example in the founding of Battle Abbey. The King invested the Abbot with
authority to save any malefactor if he (the Abbot) happened to come to the place of execution; and, moreover, he constituted the abbey church a place of safety for any felon or murderer.
The general privilege of sanctuary was intended to be only temporary. Within forty days after a felon or murderer had taken refuge, he was, we are told, to appear before the coroner, clothed in sackcloth, and there confess his crime and abjure the realm. By Act of 21 Henry VIII. c. 2, "immediately after his confession, and before his abjuration, he was to be branded by the coroner with a hot iron upon the brawn of the thumb of his right hand with the sign of the letter A, to the intent he might be the better known among the King's subjects to have abjured.”
If an offender did not make this confession and abjuration within forty days, and continued in the sanctuary, any person who furnished him with provisions was guilty of felony.
In the reign of Henry VIII., the privileges of sanctuary were materially altered. By an Act of 22 Henry VIII. C. 14, the strength of the realm being much diminished by persons taking sanctuary and abjuring the realm, who also instructed foreigners in archery and disclosed the secrets of the realm ; it was enacted that every person abjuring was to repair to some sanctuary within the realm, which himself should choose, and there remain during his natural life; and to be sworn before the coroner upon his abjuration so to do. But if he went out of the sanctuary, unless discharged by the King's pardon, and committed murder or felony, he was liable to be brought to trial for his offence, and was excluded from the right of sanctuary.
By 26 Henry VIII. c. 13, and 28 Henry VIII. c. 7, all persons accused of high treason were exempted from the privilege of sanctuary.
By 27 Henry VIII. C. 19, all sanctuary persons were to wear a badge or cognisance, to be assigned and appointed by the governor of every sanctuary, openly upon their upper garment, of the compass in length and breadth of ten inches, under pain of forfeiting all the privileges of sanctuary. They were also prevented from carrying any sword or any other weapon, except their meat knives, and those only at their meals. They were not to leave their lodging, except between sunrise and sunset, under penalty of forfeiting their sanctuary for the third such offence.
By 32 Henry VIII. c. 12, the number of privileged places were considerably restricted.
During the reign of Edward VI. the right of sanctuary was further restrained; and at length, by the statute James I., cap. 25, sec. 34, this ancient usage received its death-blow, and shortly afterwards was totally abolished.
We have so far collated notes respecting the general history of the Sanctuary. We next desire to direct attention to one of the most historically interesting places of refuge—that of Beverley, Yorkshire.
According to Oliver, in his “History of Beverley,” published in 1829, we find the right of sanctuary was granted to the church of St. John of Beverley by the pious munificence of Athelstan; and a Fridstol, or chair of peace, was placed in a conspicuous situation near the altar, as an emblem of protection to the refugee. The limits of the sanctuary, called Legua, were comprehended within the circumference of a circle, of which the church was the centre, and whose radius was about a mile. It was defined by four crosses, which were placed on the four principal roads leading to the town. One was called Molescroft Cross, and stood near Leckonfield Park; another towards North Burton; a third towards Kinwalgraves; and the last to the south of Beverley, on the road which led to the ferry across the Humber.
If a party seized a fugitive who had contrived to reach any one of the four crosses, he was obliged to pay two hundredth (a hundredth was equal to £8); if he took him within the town, then he forfeited four hundredth; if within the walls of the churchyard, six hundredth; if within the church, then twelve hundredth; if within the doors of the choir, then eighteen hundredth, besides penance, as in case of sacrilege ; but, if he presumed to take the runaway delinquent out of the holy chair or "Fridstol” itself, the offence was irredeemable by money, and had become sine emendatione, “boteless” (bootless), and called forth not only the utmost severity of the Church, but the heaviest punishment of the secular power also.
In the British Museum, amongst the Harleian MSS., is a thin folio volume, containing a list of persons who have obtained sanctuary for different crimes, in part of the reigns of Edward IV. and Richard III., and part of the reigns of Henry VII. and Henry VIII., or from about 1478 to 1539. The register also contains the oath taken by
those who sought “its peace within its mile,” and affords, perhaps, the only copy of a sanctuary oath now extant. The bailiff of the Archbishop, by whom the oath was administered, is directed to inquire of the refugee
“What man he killed, and wher with, and both ther names; and then gar hym lay his hand upon the book, sayng on this wyse : “Sir, tak hede on your oth. Ye shal be trew and feythful to my Lord Archbishop of York, Lord off this towne ; to the provost of thessame, to the Chanons of this Chirch, and all other ministr's therof.
“Also, ye shall bere gude hert to the Baillie and XII governars of this towne, to al burges' and comyners of thesame. Also, ye shall bere no poynted wapen, dagger, knyfe, ne none other wapen ayenst the Kyng's pece.
“ And ye shalbe redy at all your power if ther be any debate or stryf, or oder sothan case of fyre within the towne, to help to surcess it.
* Also ye shall be redy at the obite of Kyng Adelstan, at the dirige, and the messe, at such tyme as it is done at the warnyng of the belman of the towne, and do your dewte in ryngyng, and for to offer at the messe on the morne. So help you God and thies holy Evangelistes.' And than gar hym kysse the book."
The bailift's fee on this occasion appears to have been two shillings and fourpence; that of the Clerk of the Court, for inscribing the name of the refugee in the sanctuary register, fourpence.
The entries in these remarkable registers comprehend almost every description of crime, and afford a wonderfully interesting picture of English life in very early times. Nearly the whole of them are in Latin ; the record is often very brief, and in the ollowing form :
THOMAS FRANCIS. Thomas Francis, of Pullan, in the county of Norfolk, came to Beverley the xvij. day of October, the vii. year of our sovereign lord King Henry VII., and craved the liberty and sanctuary of St. John of Beverley, for the death of Thomas Heffley, of Danson, of the saym counte, and for debts; and is admitted to the liberty, &c.
JOHN SPRET, GENTLEMAN. Memorandum that John Spret, of Barton-upon-Humber, in the county of Lincoln, gentleman, came to Beverley the first day of