F Composite build of January vol. 1



THIS is the first and the coldest month of the year. Its zodiacal sign is Aquarius or the Waterbearer. It derives its name from Janus, a deity represented by the Romans with two faces, because he was acquainted with past and future events. Cotton introduces him into a poem on the new year

Hark, the cock crows, and yon bright star
Tells us, the day himself's not far;
And see where, breaking from the night,
He gilds the western hills with light.
With him old Janus doth appear,
Peeping into the future year,
With such a look as seems to say,
The prospect is not good that way.
Thus do we rise ill sights to see,
And 'gainst ourselves to prophesy ;
When the prophetic fear of things
A more tormenting mischief brings,
More full of soul-tormenting gall
Than direst mischiefs can befall.
But stay! but stay! Methinks my sight,
Better inform'd by clearer light,
Discerns sereneness in that brow,
That all contracted seem'd but now.
His revers'd face may show distaste,
And frown upon the ills are past;
But that which this way looks is clear,
And smiles upon the new-born year.*

According to the ancient mythology, Janus was the god of gates and avenues, and in that character held a key in his right hand, and a rod in his left, to symbolize his opening and ruling the year: sometimes he bore the number 300 in one hand, and 65 in the other, the number of its days. At other times he was represented with four heads, and placed in a temple of four equal sides, with a door and three windows in each side, as emblems of the four seasons and the twelve months over which he presided. According to Verstegan (Restitution of Decayed Intelligence, 4to. 1628, p. 59) the Saxons called this month "Wolf-monat," or Wolf-month, because the wolves of our ancient forests, impelled by hunger at this season, were wont to prowl and attack man himself; the inferior animals, on whom they usually preyed, having retired or perished from the inclemency of the weather. The Saxons also called this month "Aefter-yula," or After Christmas. In illuminated calendars prefixed to catholic missals, or service books, January was frequently depicted as a man with fagots or a woodman's axe, shivering and blowing his fingers. Spenser introduces this month in his Faerie Queene:

Then came old January, wrapped well
In many weeds to keep the cold away;
Yet did he quake and quiver like to quell;
And blow his nayles to warme them if he may;
For they were numb'd with holding all the day
An hatchet keene, with which he felled wood,
And from the trees did lop the needlesse spray.


January 1

Circumcision. { A close holiday at all public offices except the Excise, Customs, and Stamps.

This festival stands in the calendar of the church of England, as well as in that of the Roman catholic church. It is said to have been instituted about 487; it first appeared in the reformed English liturgy in 1550.

Without noticing every saint to whom each day is dedicated in the Roman catholic calendars, the names of saints will be given day by day, as they stand under each day in the last edition of their "Lives," by the Rev. Alban Butler, in 12 vols. 8vo. On the authority of that work the periods will be mentioned when the saints most noted for their miracles flourished, and some of those miracles [will] be stated. Other miracles will be given: First, from "The Golden Legend," a black letter folio volume, printed by W. de Worde.-Secondly, from "The Church History of Britain," by the Benedictine father, S. Cressy, dedicated by him to the queen consort of Charles II., a folio, printed in 1668.- Thirdly, from the catholic translation of the "Lives of the Saints," by the Rev. Father Peter Ribadeneira, priest of the society of Jesus, second edition, London, 1730, 2 vols. folio ; and Fourthly, from other sources which will be named. By this means the reader will be acquainted with legends that rendered the saints and the celebration of their festival popular. For example, the saints in Butler's Lives on this day occur in the following order:

St. Fulgentius ; St. Odilo, or Olou ; St. Almachus, or Telemachus ; St. Eugendus, or Oyend; St. Fanchea, or Faine; St. Mochua, or Moncain, alias Claunus; St. Mochua, alias Cronan, of Balla.

Sts. Mochua. According to Butler, these were Irish saints. One founded the monastery, now the town of Balla, in Connaught. The other is said to have founded 120 cells, and thirty churches, in one of which he passed thirty years, and died about the sixth century. Bishop Patrick, in his "Reflexions upon the Devotions of the Roman Church," 1764, 8vo. cites of St. Mochua, that while walking and praying, and seeing a company of lambs running hastily to suck their mothers, he drew a line upon the ground which none of the hungry lambs durst pass. Patrick again cites, that St. Mochua having been visited by St. Kyenanus and fifteen of his clergy, they came to an impetuous and impassable river on their return, and wanted a boat; whereupon St. Mochua spread his mantle on the water, and Kyenanus with his fifteen priests were carried safely over upon the mantle, which floated back again to St. Mochua without wrinkle or wetting.

St. Fanchea, or Faine, is said by Butler to have been an Irish saint of the sixth century. Patrick quotes that St. Endeus desiring to become a monk, his companions approached to dissuade him; but upon the prayers of St. Faine, and her making the sign of the cross, their feet stuck to the earth like immovable stones until by repentence they were loosed and went their way.

St. Fulgentius, according to Butler, died on the 1st of January, 533, sometimes went barefoot, never undressed to take rest, nor ate flesh meat, but chiefly lived on pulse and herbs, though when old he admitted the use of a little oil. He preached, explained mysteries, controverted with heretics, and built monasteries. Butler concludes by relating, that after his death, a bishop named Pontian was assured in a vision of Fulgentius's immortality; that his relics were translated to Bourges, where they are venerated; and that the saint's head is in the church of the archbishop's seminary.



The King of Light, father of aged Time,
Hath brought about that day, which is the prime
To the slow gliding months, when every eye
Wears symptoms of a sober jollity;
And every hand is ready to present
Some service in a real compliment.
Whilst some in golden letters write their love,
Some speak affection by a ring or glove,
Or pins and points (for ev'n the peasant may,
After his ruder fashion, be as gay
As the brisk courtly sir,) and thinks that he
Cannot, without a gross absurdity,
Be this day frugal, and not spare his friend
Some gift, to show his love finds not an end
With the deceased year.


In the volume of "ELIA," an excellent paper begins with "Every man hath two birthdays: two days, at least, in every year, which set him upon revolving the lapse of time, as it affects his mortal duration. The one is that which in an especial manner he termeth his. In the gradual desuetude of old observances, this custom of solemnizing our proper birthday hath nearly passed away, or is left to children, who reflect nothing at all about the matter, nor understand any thing beyond the cake and orange. But the birth of a new year is of an interest too wide to be pretermitted by king or cobbler. No one ever regarded the First of January with indifference. It is that from which all date their time, and count upon what is left. It is the nativity of our common Adam.

"Of all sound of all bells-(bells, the music nighest bordering upon heaven)-most solemn and touching is the peal which rings out the old year. I never hear it without a gathering-up of my mind to a concentration of all the images that have been diffused over the past twelvemonth; all I have done or suffered, performed, or neglected-in that regretted time. I begin to know its worth as when a person dies. It takes a personal colour; nor was it a poetical flight in a contemporary, when he exclaimed,

'I saw the skirts of the departing year.'

"The elders with whom I was brought up, were of a character not likely to let slip the sacred observance of any old institution; and the ringing out of the old year was kept by them with circumstances of peculiar ceremony. In those days the sound of those midnight chimes, though it seemed to raise hilarity in all around me, never failed to bring a train of pensive imagery into my fancy. Yet I then scarce conceived what it meant, or thought of it as a reckoning that concerned me. Not childhood alone, but the young man till thirty, never feels practically that he is mortal."

Ringing out the old and ringing in the new year, with "a merry new year! A happy new year to you!" on new year's day, were greetings that moved sceptred pride, and humble labour, to smiles and kind feelings in former times; and why should they be unfashionable in our own?

Dr. Drake observes, in "Shakespeare and his Times," that the ushering in of the new year, or new year's tide, with rejoicings, presents, and good wishes, was a custom observed, during the 16th century, with great regularity and parade, and was as cordially celebrated in the court of the prince as in the cottage of the peasant.

The Rev. T.D. Fosbroke, in his valuable "Encyclopedia of Antiquities," adduces various authorities to show that congratulations, presents, and visits were made by the Romans on this day. The origin, he says, is ascribed to Romulus and Tatius, and that the usual presents were figs and dates, covered with leaf-gold, and sent by clients to patrons, accompanied with a piece of money, which was expended to purchase the statues of deities. He mentions an amphora (a jar) which still exists, with an inscription denoting that it was a new year's present from the potters to their patroness. He also instances from Count Caylus a piece of Roman pottery, with an inscription wishing "a happy new year to you;" another, where a person wishes it to himself and his son; and three medallions, with the laurel leaf, fig, and date; one, of Commodus; another, of Victory; and a third, Janus, standing in a temple, with an inscription, wishing a happy new year to the emperor. New year's gifts were continued under the Roman emperors until they were prohibited by Claudius. Yet in the early ages of the church the Christian emperors received them; nor did they wholly cease, although condemned by ecclesiastical councils on account of the pagan ceremonies of their presentation.

The Druids were accustomed on certain days to cut the sacred misletoe with a golden knife, in a forest dedicated to the gods, and to distribute its branches with much ceremony as new year's gifts among the people.

The late Rev. John Brand, in his "Popular Antiquities" edited by Mr. Ellis, observes from Bishop Stillingfleet, that among the Saxons of the north, the festival of the new year was observed with more than ordinary jollity and feasting, and by sending new year's gifts to one another. Mr. Fosbroke notices the continuation of the Roman practice during the middle ages; and that our kings, and the nobility especially, interchanged presents. Mr. Ellis quotes Matthew Paris, who appears to show that Henry III extorted new year's gifts; and he cites from a MS. Of the public revenue, anno 5, Edward VI. an entry of "rewards given on new year's day to the king's officers and servants in ordinary 155l. 5s., and to their servants that present the king's majestie with new year's gifts." An orange stuck with cloves seems, by reference to Mr. Fosbroke and our early authors, to have been a popular new year's gift. Mr. Ellis suggests, that the use of this present may be ascertained from a remark by old Lupton, that the flavour of wine is improved, and the wine itself preserved from mouldiness, by an orange or lemon stuck with cloves being hung within the vessel so as not to touch the liquor.

Thomas Naogeorgus, in "The Popish Kingdome," a Latin poem written in 1553, and Englished by Barnabe Googe, after remarking on days of the old year, urges this recollection:

The next to this is Newe yeares day whereon to every frende,
They costly presents in do bring, and Newe yeares giftes do sende,
These giftes the husband gives his wife, and father eke the childe,
And maister on his men bestowes the like, with favour milde.

Honest old Latimer, instead of presenting Henry VIII. with a purse of gold, as was customary, for a new year's gift, put into the king's hand a New Testament, with a leaf conspicuously doubled down at Hebrews xiii. 4, which, on reference, will be found to have been worthy of all acceptation, though not perhaps well accepted. Dr. Drake is of opinion that the wardrobe and jewellery of queen Elizabeth were principally supported by these annual contributions on new year's day. He cites lists of the new year's gifts presented to her, from the original rolls published in her Progresses by Mr. Nichols; and from these it appears that the greatest part, if not all the peers and peeresses of the realm, all the bishops, the chief officers of state, and several of the queen's household servants, even down to her apothecaries, master cook, serjeant of the pastry, &c. gave new year's gifts to her majesty; consisting, in general, either of a sum of money, or jewels, trinkets, wearing apparel, &c. The largest sum given by any of the temporal lords was 20l.; but the archbishop of Canterbury gave 40l., the archbishop of York 30l., and the other spiritual lords 20l. and 10l.; many of the temporal lords and great officers, and most of the peeresses, gave rich gowns, petticoats, shifts, silk stockings, garters, sweet-bags, doublets, mantles embroidered with precious stones, looking-glasses, fans, bracelets, caskets studded with jewels, and other costly trinkets. Sir Gilbert Dethick, garter king at arms, gave a book of the States in William the Conqueror's time; Absolon, the master of the Savoy, gave a Bible covered with cloth of gold, garnished with silver gilt, and plates of the royal arms; the queen's physician presented her with a box of foreign sweetmeats; another physician presented a pot of green ginger, and a pot of orange flowers; her apothecaries gave her a box of lozenges, a box of ginger candy, a box of green ginger, and pots of other conserves. Mrs. Blanch a Parry gave her majesty a little gold comfit-box and spoon; Mrs. Morgan gave a box of cherries, and one of apricots. The queen's master cook and her serjeant of the pastry, presented her with various confectionary and preserves. Putrino, an Italian, gave her two pictures; Ambrose Lupo gave her a box of lute strings, and a glass of sweet water; each of three other Italians presented her with a pair of sweet gloves; a cutler gave her a meat knife having a fan haft of bone, with a conceit in it; Jeromy Bassano gave two drinking glasses; and Smyth, the dustman, presented her majesty with two bolts of cambrick. Some of these gifts to Elizabeth call to recollection the tempting articles which Autylocus, in the "Winter's Tale," invites the country girls to buy: he enters singing,

Lawn, as white as driven snow;
Cypress, black as e'er was crow;
Gloves, as sweet as damask roses
Masks for faces, and for noses;
Bugle bracelet, necklace-amber,
Perfume for a lady's chamber;
Golden quoifs, and stomachers,
For my lads to give their dears;
Pins, and poking-sticks of steel,
What maids lack from head to heel:
Come, buy of me, come: come buy, come buy;
Buy, lads, or else your lasses cry,
Come, buy, &c.

Dr. Drake says, that though Elizabeth made returns to the new year's gifts, in plate and other articles, yet she took sufficient care that the balance should be in her own favour.

No. 4982, in the Catalogue for 1824, of Mr. Rodd, of Great Newport-street, is a roll of vellum, ten feet long, containing the new year's gifts from king James I. to the persons whose names are therein mentioned on the 1st of January 1605, with the new year's gifts that his majesty received the same day; the roll is signed by James himself and certain officers of his household.

In a "Banquet of Jests, 1634," 12mo., there is a pleasant story of Archee, the king's jester, who, having fooled many, was fooled himself. Coming to a nobleman, upon new year's day, to bid him good-morrow, Archee received twenty pieces of gold; but, covetously desiring more, he shook them in his hand, and said they were too light. The donor answered: "I prithee, Archee, let me see them again, for there is one amongst them I would be loth to part with:" Archee, expecting the sum to be increased, returned the pieces to his lordship; who put them in his pocket with this remark, "I once gave money into a fool's hand, who had not the wit to keep it."

Pins were acceptable new year's gifts to the ladies, instead of the wooden skewers which they used till the end of the fifteenth century. Sometimes they received a composition in money: and hence allowances for their separate use is still denominated "pin money."

Gloves were customary new year's gifts. They were more expensive than in our times, and occasionally a money present was tendered instead: this was called "glove-money." Sir Thomas More, as lord chancellor, decreed in favour of a Mrs. Croaker against the lord Arundel. On the following new year's day, in token of her gratitude, she presented sir Thomas with a pair of gloves, containing forty angels. "It would be against good manners," said the chancellor, to forsake a gentlewoman's new year's gift, and I accept the gloves; their lining you will be pleased otherwise to bestow."

Mr. Brand relates from a curious MS. in the British Museum, of the date of 1560, that the boys of Eton school used on this day to play for little new year's gifts before and after supper; and also to make verses, which they presented to the provost and masters, and to each other: new year's gifts of verses, however, were not peculiar to schoolboys. A poet, the beauties of whose poetry are justly remarked to be "of a kind which time has a tendency rather to hallow than to injure," Robert Herrick, presents us in his Hesperides, with "a New Year's Gift sent to Sir Simon Steward." He commences it merrily, and goes on to call it

———— a jolly
Verse, crown'd with ivy and with holly;
That tells of winter's tales and mirth,
That milk-maids make about the hearth;
Of Christmas' sports, the wassail bowl,
That tost-up after fox-i' th' hole;
Of blind-man-buff, and of the care
That young men have to shoe the mare;
Of twelfth-tide cakes, of pease and beans,
Wherewith ye make those merry scenes;
Of crackling laurel, which fore-sounds
A plenteous harvest to your grounds
Of those, and such like things, for shift,
We send, instead of New Year's Gift.
Read then, and when your faces shine
With buxom meat and cap'ring wine,
Remember us in cups full crown'd
And let our city-health go round.
Then, as ye sit about your embers,
Call not to mind the fled Decembers;
But think on these, that are t'appear,
As daughters to the instant year;
And to the bagpipes all address
Till sleep take place of weariness.
And thus throughout, with Christmas plays,
Frolick the full twelve holidays.

Mr. Ellis, in a note on Brand, introduces a poetical new year's gift in Latin, from the stern Buchanan to the unhappy Mary of Scotland.

"New year's gifts," says Dr. Drake, "were given and received, with the mutual expression of good wishes, and particularly that of a happy new year. The compliment was sometimes paid at each other's doors in the form of a song; but more generally, especially in the north of England and in Scotland, the house was entered very early in the morning, by some young men and maidens selected for the purpose, who presented the spiced bowl and hailed you with the gratulations of the season." To this may be added, that it was formerly the custom in Scotland to send new year's gifts on new year's eve; and on new year's day to wish each other a happy new year, and ask for a new year's gift. There is a citation in Brand, from the "Statistical Account of Scotland," concerning new year's gifts to servant maids by their masters; and it mentions that "there is a large stone, about nine or ten feet high, and four broad, placed upright in a plain, in the (Orkney) isle of North Ronaldshay; but no tradition is preserved concerning it, whether erected in memory of any signal event, or for the purpose of administering justice, or for religious worship. The writer of this (the parish priest) has seen fifty of the inhabitants assembled there, on the first day of the year, dancing by moonlight, with no other music than their own singing.

In Mr. Stewart's "Popular Superstitions of the Highlands," there is some account of the Candlemas bull, on new year's eve, as introductory to the new year. The term Candlemas, applied to this season, is supposed to have originated in some old religious ceremonies performed by candlelight. The bull is a passing cloud, which Highland imagination perverts into the form of that animal; as it rises or falls or takes peculiar directions, of great significancy to the seers, so does it prognosticate good or bad weather. The more northern nations anciently assigned portentous qualities to the winds of new year's eve. One of their old legends in Brand may be thus versified—the last line eking out the verse:

If New Year's eve night-wind blow south,
It betokeneth warmth and growth;
If west, much milk, and fish in the sea;
If north, much cold, and storms there will be;
If east, the trees will bear much fruit
If north-east, flee it man and brute.

Mr. Stewart says, that as soon as night sets in it is the signal with the Strathdown highlander for the suspension of his usual employment, and he directs his attention to more agreeable callings. The men form into bands with tethers and axes, and, shaping their course to the juniper bushes, they return home laden with mighty loads, which are arranged round the fire to-day till morning. A certain discreet person is despatched to the dead and living ford to draw a pitcher of water in profound silence, without the vessel touching the ground, lest its virtue should be destroyed, and on his return all retire to rest. Early on new year's morning the Usque-Cashrichd, or water from the dead and living ford, is drank, as a potent charm, until next new year's day, against the spells of witchcraft, the malignity of evil eyes, and the activity of all infernal agency. The qualified highlander then takes a large brush, with which he profusely asperses the occupants of all beds; from whom it is not unusual for him to receive ungrateful remonstrances against ablution. This ended, and the doors and windows being thoroughly closed, and all crevices stopped, he kindles piles of the collected juniper, in the dif ferent apartments, till the vapour from the burning branches condenses into opaque clouds, and coughing, sneezing, wheezing, gasping, and other demonstrations of suffocation ensue. The operator, aware that the more intense the "smuchdan," the more propitious the solemnity, disregards these indications, and continues, with streaming eyes and averted head, to increase the fumigation, until in his own defence he admits the air to recover the exhausted household and himself. He then treats the horses, cattle, and other bestial stock in the town with the same smothering, to keep them from harm throughout the year. When the gudewife gets up, and having ceased from coughing, has gained sufficient strength to reach the bottle dhu, she administers its comfort to the relief of the sufferers: laughter takes place of complaint, all the family get up, wash their faces, and receive the visits of their neighbours, who arrive full of gratulations peculiar to the day. Mu nase choil orst, "My Candlemas bond upon you" is the customary salutation, and means, in plain words, "You owe me a new year's gift." A point of great emulation is, who shall salute the other first; because the one who does so is entitled to a gift from the person saluted. Breakfast, consisting of all procurable luxuries, is then served, the neighbours not engaged are invited to partake, and the day ends in festivity.

Riding stang, a custom that will be observed on hereafter, prevails in some parts of England on new year's day to the present hour. The 'stang' is a cowl-staff; the cowl is a water-vessel, borne by two persons on the cowl-staff, which is a stout pole whereon the vessel hangs. "Where's the cowl-staff?" cries Ford's wife, when she purposes to get Falstaff into a large buck-basket, with two handles; the cowl-staff, or "stang," is produced, and, being passed through the handles, the fat knight is borne off by two of Ford's men. A writer in the Gentleman's Magazine, 1791, says, that in Westmoreland and Cumberland, on the 1st of January, multitudes assemble early in the morning with baskets and "stangs," and whoever does not join them, whether inhabitant or stranger, is immediately mounted across the "stang," and carried, shoulder height, to the next public-house, where sixpence liberates the prisoner. Women are seized in this way, and car ried in baskets—the sex being privileged from riding "stang," in compliment, perhaps, to the use of side-saddles. In the same part of the country, no one is allowed to work on new year's day, however industrious. Mr. Ellis shows that it was a new year's day custom in ancient Rome for tradesmen to work a little only, for luck's sake, that they might have constant business all the year after.

A communication in an English journal of January 1824 relates, that in Paris on new year's day, which is called le jour d'étrennes, parents bestow portions on their children, brothers on their sisters, and husbands make presents to their wives. Carriages may be seen rolling through the streets with cargoes of bon-bons, souvenirs, and the variety of et cæteras, with which little children and grown-up children are bribed into good humour; and here and there pastrycooks are to be met with, carrying upon boards enormous temples, pagodas, churches, and playhouses, made of fine flour and sugar, and the embellishments which render French pastry so inviting. But there is one street in Paris to which a new year's day is a whole year's fortune—this is the Rue des Lombards, where the wholesale confectioners reside; for in Paris every trade and profession has its peculiar quarter. For several days preceding the 1st of January, this street is completely blocked up by carts and waggons laden with cases of sweetmeats for the provinces. These are of every form and description which the most singular fancy could imagine; bunches of carrots, green peas, boots and shoes, lobsters and crabs, hats, books, musical instruments, gridirons, frying-pans, and saucepans; all made of sugar, and coloured to imitate reality, and all made with a hollow within to hold the bon-bons. The most prevailing device is what is called a cornet, that is, a little cone ornamented in different ways with a bag to draw over the large end, and close it up. In these things, the prices of which vary from one franc (tenpence) to fifty, the bon-bons are presented by those who choose to be at the expense of them, and by those who do not, they are only wrapped in a piece of paper; but bon-bons in some way or other must be presented. It would not, perhaps, be an exaggeration to state that the amount expended for presents on new year's day in Paris, for sweetmeats alone, exceeds 500,000 francs,or 20,000l. sterling. Jewellery is also sold to a very large amount, and the fancy articles exported in the first week in the year to England and other countries, is computed at one-fourth of the sale during the twelve months. In Paris it is by no means uncommon for a man of 8,000 or 10,000 francs a year to make presents on new year's day which cost him a fifteenth part of his income. No person able to give must on this day pay a visit empty-handed. Every body accepts, and every man gives according to the means which he possesses. Females alone are excepted from the charge of giving. A pretty woman, respectably connected, may reckon her new year's presents at something considerable. Gowns, jewellery, gloves, stocking, and artificial flowers, fill her drawing-room; for in Paris it is a custom to display all the gifts, in order to excite emulation, and to obtain as much as possible. At the palace the new year's day is a complete jour de fête. Every branch of the royal family is then expected to make handsome presents to the king. For the six months preceding January 1824, the female branches were busily occupied in preparing presents of their own manufacture, which would fill at least two common-sized waggons. The duchess de Berri painted an entire room of japanned pannels, to be set up in the palace; and the duchess of Orleans prepared an elegant screen. An English gentleman who was admitted suddenly into the presence of the duchess de Berri two months before, found her, and three of her maids of honour, lying on the carpet, painting the legs of a set of chairs, which were intended for the king. The day commences with the Parisians, at an early hour, by the interchange of their visits and bon-bons. The nearest relations are visited first, until the furthest in blood have had their calls; then friends and acquaintances. The conflict to anticipate each other's calls, occasions the most agreeable and whimsical scenes among these proficients in polite attentions. In these visits, and in gossiping at the confectioners' shops, which are the great lounge for the occasion, the morning of new year's day is passed; a dinner is given by some member of the family to all the rest, and the evening concludes, like Christmas day, with cards, dancing, or any other amusement that may be preferred. One of the chief attractions to a foreigner in Paris is the exhibition which opens there on new year's day, of the finest specimens of the Sevres china manu factured at the royal establishment in the neighbourhood of Versailles during the preceding year.

Undoubtedly, new year's gifts originated in heathen observances, and were grossly abused in after ages; yet latterly they became a rational and pleasant mode of conveying our gentle dispositions towards those we esteem. Mr. Audley, in his compendious and useful "Companion to the Almanack," says, with truth, that they are innocent, if not praiseworthy; and he quotes this amiable sentiment from Bourne: "If I send a new year's gift to my friend it shall be a token of my friendship; if to my benefactor, a token of my gratitude; if to the poor, which at this season must never be forgot, it shall be to make their hearts sing for joy, and give praise and adoration to the Giver of all good gifts." The Jews on the first day of their new year give sumptuous entertainments, and joyfully wish each other "a happy new year." This salutation is not yet obsolete even with us; but the new year's gift seldom arrives, except to honest rustics from their equals; it is scarcely remembered with a view to its use but by young persons, who, "invexed with all the cares of gain," have read or heard tell of such things, and who, with innocent hearts, feeling the kindness of the sentiment, keep up the good old custom among one another, till mixture with the world, and "long experience, makes them sage," and sordid.

New year's day in London is not observed by any public festivity; but little social dining parties are frequently formed amongst friends; and convivial persons may be found at taverns, and in publicans' parlours, regaling on the occasion. Dr. Forster relates, in his "Perennial Calendar," that many people make a point to wear some new clothes on this day, and esteem the omission as unlucky: the practice, however, from such motives, must obviously be confined to the uninformed. The only open demonstration of joy in the metropolis, is the ringing of merry peals from the belfries of the numerous steeples, late on the eve of the new year, and until after the chimes of the clock have sounded its last hour.

On new year's day the man of business opens new account-books. "A good beginning makes a good ending." Let every man open an account to himself; and so begin the new year that he may expect to say at its termination—it has been a good year. In the hilarity of the season let him not forget that to the needy it is a season of discomfort.

There is a satisfaction
In doing a good action:

and he who devises liberal things will find his liberality return to him in a full tide of happiness. An economist can afford to be generous. "Give me neither poverty nor riches," prayed the wise man. To him who is neither encumbered by wealth, nor dispirited by indigence, the stores of enjoyment are unlocked.

He who holds fast the Golden Mean,
And lives contentedly between
    The little and the great,
Feels not the wants that pinch the poor,
Nor plagues that haunt the rich man's door,
    Embitt'ring all his state.

The tallest pines feel most the pow'r
Of wintry blasts; the loftiest tow'r
    Comes heaviest to the ground;
The bolts that spare the mountain's side
His cloud-capt eminence divide,
    And spread the ruin round.

The well-inform'd philosopher
Rejoices with a wholesome fear,
    And hopes, in spite of pain;
If Winter bellow from the North,
Soon the sweet Spring comes dancing
    And Nature laughs again.

If hindrances obstruct thy way,
Thy magnanimity display,
    And let thy strength be seen;
But oh! if fortune fill thy sail
With more than a propitious gale,
    Take half thy canvass in.




1308. On the 1st of January in this year, William Tell, the Swiss patriot, associated himself on this day with a band of his countrymen, against the tyranny of their oppressors. For upwards of three centuries the opposition was carried on, and terminated by the treaty of Westphalia in 1648, declaring the independence of Switzerland.

1651. On the 1st of January Charles II. was crowned at Scone king of the Scots. Charles, when a child, was weak in the legs, and ordered to wear steel-boots. Their weight so annoyed him that he pined till recreation became labour. An old rocker took off the steel-boots, and concealed them; promising the countess of Dorset, who was Charles's governess, that she would take any blame for the act on herself. Soon afterwards the king, Charles I., coming into the nursery, and seeing his boy's legs without the boots angrily demanded who had done it? "It was I, sir," said the rocker, "who had the honour, some thirty years since, to attend on your highness, in your infancy, when you had the same infirmity wherewith now the prince, your very own son is troubled; and then the lady Cary, (afterwards countess of Monmouth) commanded your steel-boots to be taken off, who, blessed be God, since have gathered strength, and arrived at a good stature." Clare, chaplain to Charles II., at the time the affair happened, related this anecdote to old Fuller, who in 1660, contemplating "the restoration," tells the story, and quaintly exclaims, "the nation is too noble, when his majesty shall return from foreign parts, to impose any other steel-boots upon him, than the observing the laws of the land, which are his own stockings, that so with joy and comfort he may enter on what was his own inheritance." The nation forgot the "steel-boots," and Charles forgot the "stockings."

1801. January 1. The Union of Great Britain with Ireland commenced according to act of parliament, and the event was solemnized by the hoisting of a new royal flag on the Tower of London, accompanied by the firing of guns there and in St. James's Park. On the 3d the king received the great seal of Great Britain from the lord chancellor, and causing it to be defaced, presented to him a new great seal for the United Kingdom. On the same day, January 1st, 1801, Piazzi, the astronomer at Palermo, discovered a new primary planet, making an eleventh of that order: he called it Ceres, from the goddess of that name, who was highly esteemed by the ancients of Sicily.

Usually at this period the rigour of cold is severely felt. The indisposition of lie-a-beds to face its severity is pleasantly pictured by Mr. Leigh Hunt, in a paper in the Indicator. He imagines one of those persons to express himself in these terms:

"On opening my eyes, the first thing that meets them is my own breath rolling forth, as if in the open air, like smoke out of a cottage-chimney. Think of this symptom. Then I turn my eyes sideways and see the window all frozen over. Think of that. Then the servant comes in. 'It is very cold this morning, is it not?'—'Very cold, sir.' 'Very cold indeed, isn't it?'—Very cold indeed, sir.'—'More than usually so, isn't it, even for this weather?' (Here the servant's wit and good nature are put to a considerable test, and the inquirer lies on thorns for the answer.) 'Why, Sir . . . . . I think it is.' (Good creature! There is not a better, or more truth-telling servant going.) 'I must rise, however—Get me some warm water.'—here comes a fine interval between the departure of the servant and the arrival of the hot water; during which, of course, it is of 'no use' to get up. the hot water comes. 'Is it quite hot?'—'Yes, sir.'—'Perhaps too hot for shaving: I must wait a little?'—'No sir; it will just do.' (There is an over-nice propriety sometimes, an officious zeal of virtue, a little troublesome.) 'Oh—the shirt—you must air my clean shirt:—linen gets very damp in this weather.'—'Yes, sir.' Here another delicious five minutes. A knock at the door. 'Oh, the shirt—very well. My stockings—I think the stockings had better be aired too.'—'Very well, sir.'—Here another interval. At length every thing is ready, except myself. I now cannot help thinking a good deal—who can?—upon the unnecessary and villainous custom of shaving; it is a thing so unmanly (here I nestle closer)—so effeminate, (here I recoil from an unlucky step into the colder part of the bed.)—No wonder, that the queen of France took part with the rebels against that degenerate king, her husband, who first affronted her smooth visage with a face like her own. The emperor Julian never showed the luxuriancy of his genius to better advantage than in reviving the flowing beard. Look at cardinal Bembo's picture—at Michael Angelo's—at Titian's—at Shakespeare's—at Fletcher's—at Spenser's—at Chaucer's—at Alfred's—at Plato's. I could name a great man for every tick of my watch. Look at the turks, a grave and otiose people—think of Haroun Al Raschid and Bed-ridden Hassan—Think of Wortley Montague, the worthy son of his mother, a man above the prejudice of his time—Look at the Persian gentlemen, whom one is ashamed of meeting about the suburbs, their dress and appearance are so much finer than our own—Lastly, think of the razor itself—how totally opposed to every sensation of bed—how cold, how edgy, how hard! how utterly different from any thing like the warm and circling amplitude, which

               Sweetly recommends itself
Unto our gentle senses.

Add to this, benumbed fingers, which may help you to cut yourself, a quivering body, a frozen towel, and an ewer full of ice; and he that says there is nothing to oppose in all this, only shows, at any rate that he has not merit in opposing it."

winter exercise

Gymnastics for Youth.

This engraving represents simple methods by which, at this season especially, the health of young persons may be maintained, and the constitution invigorated. Two round parallel bars at two feet distance from each other, on round standards three or four feet high, firmly fixed in the ground, will afford boys the means of actively exerting their limbs and muscles: and if the ends of a pole be let into opposite walls or fastened to trees, the boys may be taught to climb single ropes, and hold on while swinging by them. The engraving is placed before the eyes of parents and teachers with the hope of directing their attention to gymnastic exercises, as diversions for youth, and they are referred to a practical treatise on the subject by Mr. Clias, that may be safely used. His judicious reasoning must convince every reader of their importance to the rising generation, and that it is within the means of all classes of persons to let boys acquire a knowledge of the feats represented in the plates to his work, for teaching which his explanations are numerous and clear.

An unseasonable occurrence in the cellar of the late sir Joseph Banks may be acceptable in the mention, and excite particular sympathy in persons who recreate with the juice of the vine: as a fact, it may tend to elucidate the origin and nature of vegetable fungi, particularly of that species termed mushroom. The worthy baronet had a cask of wine rather too sweet for immediate use; he therefore directed that it should be placed in a cellar, in order that the saccharine matter it contained might be more perfectly decomposed by age. At the end of three years, he directed his butler to ascertain the state of the wine, when, on attempting to open the cellar door, he could not effect it, in consequence of some powerful obstacle. The door was cut down, and the cellar found to be completely filled with a firm fungous vegetable production—so firm that it was necessary to use the axe for its removal. This appeared to have grown from, or have been nourished by, the decomposed particles of the wine: the cask was empty, and carried up to the ceiling, where it was supported by the surface of the fungus.

At the close of this day he who can reflect with satisfaction on the past, may anticipate with calm delight the entrance of the new year, and lift his eyes to the living lustres of the firmament with grateful feelings. They shine out their prismatic colours through the cold thin air, keeping watch while man slumbers, or cheering him, who contemplates their fires, to purposes of virtue. In this season

————— The night comes calmly forth,
Bringing sweet rest upon the wings of even:
The golden wain rolls round the silent north,
And earth is slumbering 'neath the smiles of heaven



January 2.

St. Macarius; St. Concordius; St. Adalard or Alard.

St. Macarius. A.D. 394. Alban Butler says he was a confectioner of Alexandria, who, in the flower of his age, spent upwards of sixty years in the deserts in labour, penance, and contemplation. "Our saint," says Butler, "happened one day inadvertently to kill a gnat, that was biting him in his cell; reflecting that he had lost the opportunity of suffering that mortification, he hastened from his cell for the marshes of Scete, which abound with great flies, whose stings pierce even wild boars. There he continued six months, exposed to those ravaging insects; and to such a degree was his whole body disfigured by them, with sores and swellings, that when he returned he was only to be known by his voice." The Golden Legend relates of him, that he took a dead pagan out of his sepulchre, and put him under his head for a pillow; whereupon certain devils came to affright the saint, and called the dead pagan to go with them; but the body under the saint said he could not, because a pilgrim lay upon him, so that he could not move; then Macarius, nothing afraid, beat the body with his fist, and told him to go if he would, which caused the devils to declare that Macarius had vanquished them. Another time the devil came with a great scythe on his shoulder, to smite the saint, but he could not prevail against him, on account of his virtues. Macarius, at another time, being tempted, filled a sack with stones, and bore it many journeys through the desert. Seeing a devil before him in the shape of a man, dressed like "a herawde," with his clothing full of holes, and in every hole a phial, he demanded of this devil whither he went; and why he had so many phials? The devil answered, to give drink to the hermits; and that the phials contained a variety of liquors, that they might have a choice, and so fall into temptation. On the devil's return, the saint inquired how he had sped; and the devil answered very evil, for they were so holy that only on Theodistus would drink: on this information Macarius found Theodistus under the influences of the phial, and recovered him. Macarius found the head of a pagan, and asked where the soul of its body was; in hell, said the head: he asked the head if hell was deep;—the head answered, the false Christian-men were lower than the Jews, and more tormented: there the dialogue between the saint and the head appears to have ended. Macarius seems, by the Golden Legend, to have been much annoyed by the devil. In a nine days' journey through a desert, at the end of every mile he set up a reed in the earth, to mark his track against he returned; but the devil pulled them all up, made a bundle of them, and placed them at Macros' head, while he lay asleep, so that the saint with great difficulty found his way home again.

St. Adalard, according to Butler, was grandson of Charles Martel, brother to king Pepin, and cousin-german to Charlemagne, who created him a count: he left his court in 773, became a monk at Corbie in Picardy, died in 827, aged seventy three, and wrought miracles, which procured his body to be enshrined with great pomp in 1010, a history of which solemnity is written by St. Gerard, who composed an office in St. Adalard's honour, be cause through his intercession he had been cured of a violent head-ache. — The same St. Gerard relates seven other miracles by St. Adalard of the same nature. Butler says, his relics are still at Corbie, in a rich shrine, and two smaller cases, except a small portion given to the abbey of Chelles.

The first Monday after new year's day is called Handsel Monday in some parts of Scotland, and is observed by merry-making. In sir J. Sinclair's "Statistical Account," it is related of one William Hunter, a collier, that he was cured in the year 1758 of an inveterate rheumatism or gout, by drinking freely of new ale, full of barm or yeast. "The poor man had been confined to his bed for a year and a half, having almost entirely lost the use of his limbs. On the evening of Handsel Monday, as it is called, some of his neighbours came to make merry with him. Though he could not rise, yet he always took his share of the ale, as it passed round the company; and, in the end, became much intoxicated. The consequence was, that he had the use of his limbs the next morning, and was able to walk about. He lived more than twenty years after this, and never had the smallest return of his old complaint." This is a fact worth remembering, as connected with chronical complaints.


On the 2d of January, A.D. 17, Ovid the celebrated Roman poet died; he was born at Sulmo on the 20th of March, forty-three years before the Christian era. His father designed him for the bar, and he became eminently eloquent, but every thing he wrote was expressed in poetical numbers; and though reminded by his father, that even Homer lived and died in poverty, he preferred the pleasures of imagination to forensic disputation. He gained great admiration from the learned. Virgil, Horace, Tibullus, and Propertius, were his friends, and Augustus became his liberal patron, till he banished him for some unknown cause. In his exile he was cowardly, and prostituted his pen to flatter baseness; and though he desired the death of the emperor, he fawned upon him in his writings to meanness. He died at Tomos on the Euxine sea, the place of his banishment, under the reign of Tiberius, who had succeeded Augustus, and was deaf to the poet's entreaties for per mission to return to Rome. Whatever subject Ovid wrote on, he exhausted; he painted nature with a masterly hand, and his genius imparted elegance to vulgarity; but he defiled the sweetness of his numbers by impurity, and though he ranks among the splendid ornaments of ancient literature, he sullied his fame by the grossest immorality in some of his finest productions.

Livy, the Roman historian, died at Padua on the same day and in the same year with Ovid. His history of the Roman Empire was in one hundred and forty books, of which only thirty-five are extant. Five of these were discovered at Worms in 1431, and some fragments are said to have been lately discovered at Herculanæum. Few particulars of his life are known, but his fame was great even while he lived, and his history has rendered him immortal. He wrote some philosophical treatises and dialogues, with a letter to his son on the merit of authors, which Dr. Lempriere says, ought to be read by young men.

In the Literary Pocket Book there are some seasonable facts which may be transplanted with advantage to the reader, and, it is hoped, without disadvantage to the writer of the articles. He says that a man is infinitely mistaken, who thinks there is nothing worth seeing in winter-time out of doors, because the sun is not warm, and the streets are muddy. "Let him get, by dint of good exercise, out of the streets, and he shall find enough. In the warm neighbourhood of towns he may still watch the field-fares, thrushes, and blackbirds; the titmouse seeking its food through the straw-thatch; the red-wings, field-fares, sky-larks, and tit-larks, upon the same errand, over wet meadows; the sparrows and yellow-hammers, and chaffinches, still beautiful though mute, gleaning from the straw and chaff in farmyards; and the ring-dove, always poetical, coming for her meal to the ivy-berries. About rapid streams he may see the various habits and movements of herons, wood-cocks, wild-ducks, and other water-fowl, who are obliged to quit the frozen marshes to seek their food there. The red-breast comes to the windows, and often into the house itself, to be rewarded for its song, and for its far-famed 'painful' obsequies to the Children in the Wood."



January 3.

St. Genevieve, St. Anterus, Pope. St. Gordius. St. Peter Balsam.

St. Genevieve, Patroness of Paris.

Alban Butler affirms that she was born in 422, at Nanterre, four miles from Paris, near the present Calvary there, and that she died a virgin on this day in 512, and was buried in 545, near the steps of the high altar in a magnificent church, dedicated to St. Peter and St. Paul, began by Clovis, where he also was interred. Her relics were afterwards taken up and put into a costly shrine about 630. Of course they worked miracles. Her shrine of gold and silver, covered with precious stones, the presents of kings and queens, and with a cluster of diamonds on the top, presented by the intriguing Mary de Medicis, is, on calamitous occasions, carried about Paris in procession, accompanied by shrines equally miraculous, and by the canons of St. Genevieve walking bare-foot.

The miracles of St. Genevieve, as related in the Golden Legend, were equally numerous and equally credible. It relates that when she was a child, St. Germaine said to her mother, "Know ye for certain that on the day of Genevieve's nativity the angels sung with joy and gladness," and looking on the ground he saw a penny signed with the cross, which came there by the will of God; he took it up, and gave it to Genevieve, requiring her to bear in mind that she was the spouse of Christ. She promised him accordingly, and often went to the minster, that she might be worthy of her espousals. "Then," says the Legend, "the mother was angry and smote her on the cheek—God avenged the child, so that the mother became blind," and so remained for one and twenty months, when Genevieve fetched her some holy water, signed her with the sign of the cross, washed her eyes, and she recovered her sight. It further relates, that by the Holy Ghost she showed many people their secret thoughts, and that from fifteen years to fifty she fasted every day except Sunday and Thursday, when she ate beans, and barley-bread of three weeks old. Desiring to build a church, and dedicate it to St. Denis and other martyrs, she required materials of the priests for that purpose. "Dame," answered the priests, "we would; bet we can get no chalk nor lime." She desired them to go to the bridge of Paris, and bring what they found there. They did so till two swineherds came by, one of whom said to the other, "I went yesterday after one of my sows and found a bed of lime;" the other replied that he had also found one under the root of a tree that the wind had blown down. St. Genevieve's priests of course inquired where these discoveries were made, and bearing the tidings to Genevieve the church of St. Denis was began. During its progress the workmen wanted drink, whereupon Genevieve called for a vessel, prayed over it, signed it with the cross, and the vessel was immediately filled; "so," says the Legend, "the workmen drank their belly full," and the vessel continued to be supplied in the same way with "drink" for the workmen till the church was finished. At another time a woman stole St. Genevieve's shoes, but as soon as she got home lost her sight for the theft, and remained blind, till, having restored the shoes, St. Genevieve restored the woman's sight. Desiring the liberation of certain prisoners condemned to death at Paris, she went thither and found the city gates were shut against her, but they opened without any other key than her own presence. She prayed over twelve men in that city possessed with devils, till the men were suspended in the air, and the devils were expelled. a child of four years old fell in a pit and was killed; St. Genevieve only covered her with her mantle and prayed over her, and the child came to life and was baptized at Easter. On a voyage to Spain she arrived at a port "where, as of custom ships were wont to perish." Her own vessel was likely to strike on a tree in the water, which seems to have caused the wrecks; she commanded the tree to be cut down, and began to pray; when lo, just as the tree began to fall, "two wild heads, grey and horrible, issued thereout, which stank so sore, that the people that were there were envenomed by the space of two hours and never after perished ship there; thanks be to God and his holy saint."

At Meaux, a master not fogiving his servant his faults though St. Genevieve prayed him, she prayed against him. He was immediately seized with a hot ague; "on the morrow he came to the holy virgin, running with open mouth like a German bear, his tongue hanging out like a boar, and requiring pardon." She then blessed him, the fever left him and the servant was pardoned. A girl going by with a bottle, St. Genevieve called to her, and asked what she carried, she answered oil, which she had bought; but St. Genevieve seeing the devil sitting on the bottle, blew upon it, and the bottle broke, but the saint blessed the oil, and caused her to bear it home safely notwithstanding. The Golden Legend says, that the people who saw this, marvelled that the saint could see the devil, and were greatly edified.

It was to be expected that a saint o[f] such miraculous powers in her lifetime should possess them after her death, and accordingly the reputation of her relics is very high.

Several stories of St. Genevieve's miraculous faculties, represent them as very convenient in vexatious cases of ordinary occurence; one of these will serve as a specimen. On a dark wet night she was going to church with her maidens with a candle borne before her, which the wind and rain put out; the saint merely called for the candle, and as soon as she took it in her hand it was lighted again, "without any fire of this world."

Other stories of her lighting candles in this way, call to mind a candle, greatly venerated by E. Worsley in a "Discourse of Miracles wrought in the Roman Catholic Church, or, a full Refutation of Dr. Stillingfleet's unjust Exceptions against Miracles," octavo, 1676. At. p. 64, he says, " that the miraculous wax candle, yet seen at Arras, the chief city of Artois, may give the reader entertainment, being most certain, and never doubted of by any. In 1105, that is, much above 569 years ago, (or so great antiquity the candle is,) a merciless plague reigned in Arras. The whole city, ever devout to the Mother of God, experienced her, in this their necessity, to be a true mother of mercy: the manner was thus. The virgin Mary appeared to two men, and enjoined them to tell the bishop of Arras, that on the next Saturday towards morning she would appear in the great church, and put into his hands a wax candle burning; from whence drops of was should fall into a vessel of water prepared by the bishop. She said, moreover, that all the diseased that drank of this water, should forthwith be cured. This truly promised, truly happened. Our blessed Lady appeared all beautiful, having in her hands a wax candle burning, which diffused light over the whole church; this she presented to the bishop; he, blessing it with the sign of the cross, wet it in the urn of water; when drops o[f] wax plentifully fell down into the vessel. The diseased drank of it, all were cured, the contagion ceased, and the candle to this day preserved with great veneration, spends itself, yet loses nothing; and therefore remains still of the same length and greatness it did 500 years ago. A vast quantity of wax, made up of the many drops which fall into the water upon those festival days, when the candle burns, may be justly called a standing, indeficient miracle."

The candle story, though gravely related by a catholic writer, as "not doubted of by any," and as therefore not to be doubted, miraculously failed in convincing the protestant Stillingfleet, that "miracles wrought in the Roman catholic church," ought to be believed.


1639. A manuscript entitled "Commentaries of the Civil Wars, from 1638 to 1648," written by Sir Henry Slingsby, bart. a royalist, intimates the struggle, then approaching, between Charles I. and the nation. He says, "The 3d of January, 1639, I went to Bramham-house, out of curiosity, to see the training of the light-horse, for which service I had sent two horses, by commandment of the lieutenant and sir Joseph Ashley, who is lately come down, with special commission from the king to train and exercise them. These are strange spectacles to this nation in this age, that has lived thus long peaceably, without noise of drum or shot, and after we have stood neuter, and in peace, when all the world besides hath been in arms." The "training" was preparatory to the war with the Scots, the resistance of the commons in parliament, and its levies of troops to oppose the royal will.

"The armourers —————
With busy hammers closing rivets up,
Gave dreadful note of preparation;"

the conflict ended in the death of Charles on the scaffold, the interregnum, the restoration, and the final expulsion of the Stuart race.

January 4

St. Titus, disciple of St. Paul. St. Gregory, bishop of Langres. St Rigobert or Robert. St. Rumon.

St. Rumon

Alban Butler informs us, from William of Malmsbury, that he was a bishop, though of what nation or see is unknown, and that his name is in the English martyrology. Cressy says, that his body was buried at Tavistock, where, about 960, Ordgar, count of Devonshire, father to Elfrida, the second wife of king Edgar, built a monastery "very agreeable and pleasant, by reason of the great variety of woods, pastures, and river abounding with fish." St. Rumon consecrated the church. About thirty years afterwards, the monastery was destroyed and burnt by the Danes. It is memorable, that Edulf, a son of Ordgar, buried in that monastery, was a man of gigantic stature, and of such wonderful strength, that going to Exeter, and finding the gates shut and barred, he broke out the iron bars with his hands, burst open the gates with his foot, tore the locks and bolts asunder, and broke down part of the wall.

1568. On the 4th of January Roger Ascham died, and was buried at St. Sepulchre's church, London. He was born in Yorkshire about 1515, and is celebrated for his learning, for having been tutor and Latin secretary to queen Elizabeth, and for having written "the Scholemaster." This work originated from mention having been made at dinner that some Eton scholars "had run away from school for fear of beating." Ascham expressed his opinion that "young children were sooner allured by love, than driven by beating, to attain good learning." He then retired up stairs "to read with the queen's majesty: we read then together that noble oration of Demosthenes against Æschines, for his false dealing in his embassy to king Philip of Macedon; sir Richard Sackville came up soon after." Sackville took Ascham aside, "A fond (silly) shoolmaster," said sir Richard, "before I was fully fourteen years old, drove me so, with fear of beating, from all love of learning, as now, when I know what difference it is to have learning, and to have little, or none at all, I feel it my greatest grief, and find it my greatest hurt, that ever came to me, that it was so my ill chance, to light upon so lewd (ignorant) a schoolmaster.["] The whole conversation was very interesting, and so im pressed Ascham with its importance, that he says, he "thought to prepare some little treatise for a new-year's gift that Christmas," but it grew beneath his hands and became his "Scholemaster, showing a plain and perfect way of teaching the learned languages." the best edition of this work, which Ascham did not live to publish, is that edited by the Rev. James Upton, 1743, octavo. The book was first printed by Ascham's widow, whom with her children he left in distress. It was eminently serviceable to the advancement of teachers and pupils, at a period when it was the fashion to flog. Its most remarkable feature is the frowning down of theis brutal practice, which, to the disgrace of our own times, is still heard of in certain seminaries, both public and private.The good old man says, "Beat a child if he dance not well, and cherish him though he learn not well, ye shall have him unwilling to go to dance, and glad to go to his book: knock him always when he draweth his shaft ill, and favour him again though he fault at his book, ye shall have him very loth to be in the field, and very willing to go to school." He observes, "If ever the nature of man be given at any time, more than another, to receive goodness, it is in innocency of young years before that experience of evil have taken root in him. For the pure, clean wit of a sweet young babe, is like the newest wax, most able to receive the best and fairest printing; and like a new bright silver dish never occupied, to receive and keep clean any good thing that is put into it. therefore, to love or to hate, to like or contemn, to ply this way or that way, to good or to bad, ye shall have as ye use a child in his youth." He exemplifies this by a delightful anecdote of the young, beautiful, and accomplished lady Jane Grey, who shortly afterwards perished by the axe of the executioner. Ascham, before he went into Germany, visited Broadgate in Leicestershire, to take leave of her. "Her parents, the duke and duchess, with all the household, gentlemen and gentlewomen, were hunting in the park. I found her," says Ascham, "in her chamber, reading Phædo Platonis in Greek, and that with as much delight, as some gentlemen would read a merry tale in Boccace. After salutation, and duty done, with some other talk, I asked her, why she would lose such pastime in the park? Smiling, she answered me:

"'I wist, all their sport in the park is but a shadow to that pleasure that I find in Plato. Alas! good-folk they never felt what true pleasure meant.'

"'And how came you, madam,' quoth I, 'to this deep knowledge of pleasure? And what did chiefly allure you unto it, seeing not many women, but very few men, have attained thereunto?'

"'I will tell you,' quoth she, 'and tell you a truth, which perchance you will marvel at. One of the greatest benefits that ever God gave me, is, that he sent me so sharp and severe parents, and so gentle a schoolmaster. For when I am in presence either of father or mother, whether I speak, keep silence, sit, stand, or go, eat, drink, be merry, or sad, be sewing, playing, dancing, or doing any thing else, I must do it, as it were, in such weight, and measure, and number, even so perfectly, as God made the world; or else I am so sharply taunted, so cruelly threatened, yea presently sometimes with pinches, nips, and bobs, and other ways (which I will not name for the honour I bear them) so without measure misordered, that I think myself in hell, till sime come that I must go to Mr. Elmer; who teacheth me so gently, so pleasantly, with such fair allurements to learning, that I think all the time nothing, while I am with him: and when I am called from him, I fall on weeping, because whatwoever I do else, but learning, is full of grief, trouble, fear, and whole misliking unto me: and thus my book hath been so much my pleasure, and bringeth daily to me more pleasure and more, that in respect of it, all other pleasures in very deed, be but trifles and troubles unto me.'"

Surely this innocent creature's confession, that she was won to the love of learning and her teacher by his gentleness, and the disclosure of her affliction under the severe discipline of her parents, are positive testimony to the fact, that our children are to be governed and taught by the law of kindness: nor let it detract from the force of the remark, that in connection with her artless feelings and blameless deportment, if her hard fate call forth a versified effusion



Young, beautiful, and learned Jane, intent
   On knowledge, found it peace; her vast acquirement
Of goodness was her fall; she was content
   With dulcet pleasures, such as calm retirement

Yields to the wise alone;—her only vice
   Was virtue: in obedience to her sire
And lord she died, with them, a sacrifice
   To their ambition: her own mild desire

Was rather to be happy than be great;
   For though at their request she claimed the crown,
That they, through her, might rise to rule the state,
   Yet, the bright diadem, and gorgeous throne,
She view'd as cares, dimming the dignity
Of her unsullied mind, and pure benignity.

1815. On the 4th of January, died Alexander Macdonald, Esq., who is no other way remarkable, than for a chivalrous devotion to the family of Stuart. He raised a monument in the vale of Glenfinnyn, at the head of Lochshiel, in the county of Inverness, with a Latin, Gaelic, and English inscription, to commemorate the last open efforts of that family, for the recovery of a crown they had forfeited by innumerable breaches of the laws, and whose aggressions on life and property being suffered, till

"Non-resistance could no further go,"

they were excluded from the throne of the people, by the aristocracy and commonalty of England in parliament assembled. As evidence of the spirit that dictated such a memorial, and of the proper feeling which permits that spirit to be expressed, in spite of its hostility to the principles that deposited and continued the diadem of the commonwealth in the custody of the house of Hanover, the inscription on the monument is placed in the next column. It stands in English in these words:

On the spot where
First raised his Standard,
On the 19th day of August, MDCCXLV,
when he made the daring and romantic attempt
To recover a Throne lost by the imprudence of his
This column was erected by
To commemorate the generous zeal,
The undaunted bravery, and the inviolable fidelity,
Of his forefathers, and the rest of those
Who fought and bled in that
Arduous and unfortunate enterprise.
This Pillar is now,
Also become the Monument
Of its amiable and accomplished Founder,
Before it was finished,
Died in Edinburgh, on the 4th day of January,

The "right line" of the Stuart race terminated in the late cardinal York. He was the second son of "the Pretender," and was born at Rome on the 26th of March 1725; where he was baptized by the name of Henry Benedict Maria Clemens: he died there in 1807, in the 83d year of his age. In 1745 he went to France to head an army of fifteen thousand men, assembled and Dunkirk for the invasion of England. The battle of Culloden settled "the arduous and unfortunate enterprise," which the "amiable and accomplished founder" of the monument commemorates, and not a single transport left Dunkirk roads. As soon as Henry Benedict heard of the affair at Culloden, he returned to Rome, entered into priest's orders, and in 1747 was made a cardinal by pope Benedict XIV. It was taunted by a former pope upon James II. that he "lost his kingdom for a mass;" and it is certain that Henry Benedict was better qualified to take a red-hat and pull on and off red stockings, than to attempt the conquest of a free protestant nation.

After the expulsion of pope Pius VI. from "the chair of St. Peter," by the French, he fled from his splendid residences at Rome and Fascati to Venice, infirm in health, distressed in circumstances, and at the age of seventy-five. He subsisted for awhile on the produce of some silver plate, which he had saved from the ruin of his property. By the friendly interference of sir John Cox Hippisley, the cardinal's situation was made known to his late majesty, and lord Minto had orders to remit him a present of 2000l., which he received in February 1800, with an intimation that he might draw for the same amount in the July following; and sir J. C. Hippisley communicated to him, that an annuity of 4000l. would be at his service, so long as his circumstances might require it. This liberality was received and acknowledged by the cardinal in terms of gratitude, and made a considerable impression on the reigning pope and his court. These facts are extracted from the Gentleman's Magazine, (vols. 74 and 77,) which also observes, that "from the time he devoted himself to ecclesiastical functions he seemed to have laid aside all worldly views, till his father's death in 1788, when he had medals struck, bearing on their face his head, with 'HENRICUS NONUS ANGLIÆ REX;' on the reverse, a city, with 'GRATIA DEI, SED NON VOLUNTATE HOMINUM:' if we are not misinformed, our sovereign has one of these medals." From one in the possession of the compiler of this work, he is enabled to present an engraving of it to his readers.




January 5.

St. Simeon Stylites. St. Telesphorus. St. Syncletin.

St. Simeon Stylites.

Alban Butler declares, that St. Simeon astonished the whole Roman empire by his mortifications. In the monastery of Heliodorus, a man sixty-five years of age, who had spent sixty-two years so abstracted from the world, that he was ignorant of the most obvious things in it; the monks ate but once a day: Simeon joined the community, and ate but once a week. Heliodorus required Simeon to be more private in his mortifications; "with this view," says Butler, "judging the rough rope of the well, made of twised palm-tree leaves, a proper instrument of penance, Simeon tied it close about his naked body, where it remained unknown both to the community and his superior, till such time as it having ate into his flesh, what he had privately done was discovered by the effluvia proceeding from the wound." Butler says, that it took three days to disengage the saint's clothes, and that "the incision of the physician, to cut the cord out of his body, were attended with such anguish and pain, that he lay for some time as dead." After this he determined to pass the whole forty days of Lent in total abstinence, and retired to a hermitage for that purpose. Bassus, an abbot, left with him ten loaves and water, and coming to visit him at the end of the forty days, found both loaves and water untouched, and the saint stretched on the ground without signs of life. Bassus dipped a sponge in water, moistened his lips, gave him the eucharist, and Simeon by degrees swallowed a few lettuce leaves and other herbs. He passed twenty-six Lents in the same manner. In the first part of a Lent he prayed standing; growing weaker he prayed sitting; and towards the end, being almost exhausted, he prayed lying on the ground. At the end of three years he left his hermitage for the top of a mountain, made an enclosure of loose stones, without a roof, and having resolved to live exposed to the inclemencies of the weather, he fixed his resolution by fastening his right leg to a rock with a great iron chain. Multitudes thronged to the mountain to receive his benediction, and many of the sick recovered their health; But as some were not satisfied unless they touched him in his enclosure, and Simeon desired retirement from the daily concourse, he projected a new and unprecedented manner of life. He erected a pillar six cubits high, (each cubit being eighteen inches,) and dwelt on it four years; on a second of twelve cubits high he lived three years; on a third of twenty-two cubits high ten years; and on a fourth of forty cubits, or sixty feet high, which the people built for him, he spent the last twenty years of his life. This occasioned him to be called stylites, from the Greek word stylos, a pillar. This pillar did not exceed three feet in diame ter at the top, so that he could not lie extended on it: he had no seat with him; he only stooped or leaned to take a little rest, and bowed his body in prayer so often, that a certain person who counted these positions, found that he made one thousand two hundred and forty-four reverences in one day, which if he began at four o'clock in the morning and finished at eight o'clock at night, gives a bow to every three-quarters of a minute; besides which he exhorted the people twice a day. His garments were the skins of beasts, he wore an iron collar round his neck, and had a horrible ulcer in his foot. During his forty days' abstinence throughout Lent, he tied himself to a pole. He treated himself as the outcast of the world and the worst of sinners, worked miracles, delivered prophecies, had the sacrament delivered to him on the pillar, and died bowing upon it, in the sixty-ninth of his age, after having lived upon pillars for six and thirty years. His corpse was carried to Antioch attended by the bishops and the whole country, and worked miracles on its way. So far this account is from Alban Butler.

Without mentioning circumstances and miracles in the Golden Legend, which are too numerous, and some not fit to be related, it may be observed that it is there affirmed of him, that after his residence on the pillars, one of his thighs rotted a whole year, during which time he stood on one leg only. Near Simeon's pillar was the dwelling of a dragon, so very venomous, that nothing grew near his cave. This dragon met with an accident; he had a stake in his eye, and coming all blind to the saint's pillar and placing his eye upon it for three days without doing harm to any one, Simeon ordered earth and water to be placed on the dragon's eye, which being done, out came the stake, a cubit in length; when the people saw this maracle, they glorified God, and ran away for fear of the dragon, who arose and adored for two hours, and returned to his cave. A woman swallowed a little serpent, which tormented her for many years, till she came to Simeon, who causing earth and water to be laid on her mouth, the little serpent came out four feet and a half long. It is affirmed by the Golden Legend, that when Simeon died, Anthony smelt a precious odour proceeding from his body; that the birds cried so much, that both men and beasts cried; that an angel came down in a cloud; that the patriarch of Antioch taking Simeon's beard to put among his relics, his hand withered, and remained so till multitudes of prayers were said for him, and it was healed: and that more miracles were worked at and after Simeon's sepulture, than he had wrought all his life.


1724. Jan. 5. An extraordinary instance of longevity is contained in a letter dated the 29th of January, 1724, from M. Hamelbranix, the Dutch envoy at Vienna, to their high mightinesses the states general, and published in a Dutch dictionary, "Het Algemeen historisch, geographisch en genealogisch Woordenbock," by Luiscius. It relates to an individual who had attained the extraordinary age of one hundred and eighty-five years.

"Czartan Petrarch, by religion a Greek, was born in the year 1539, and died on the 5th of January, 1724, at Kofrosch, a village four miles from Temeswar, on the road leading to Karansebos. He had lived, therefore, a hundred and eighty-five years. At the time when the Turks took Temeswar from the Christians, he was employed in keeping his father's cattle. A few days before his death he had walked, with the help of a stick, to the post-house at Kofrosch, to ask charity from the travellers. His eyes were much inflamed, but he still enjoyed a little sight. His hair and beard were of a greenish, white colour, like mouldy bread; and he had a few of his teeth remaining. His son, who was ninety-seven years of age, declared his father had once been the head taller; that at a great age he married for the third time; and that he was born in this last marriage. He was accustomed, agreeably to the rules of his religion, to observe fast days with great strictness, and never to use any other food than milk, and certain cakes, called by the Hungarians kollatschen, together with a good glass of brandy, such as is made in the country. He had descendants in the fifth generation, with whom he sometimes sported, carrying them in his arms. His son, though ninety-seven, was still fresh and vigorous. When field marshal count Wallis, the commandant of Temeswar, heard that this old man was taken sick, he caused a portrait of him to be painted, and when it was almost finished he expired."

1808. Early in January, this year, the shaft of death supplied another case of longevity. At the advanced age of 110 years, died Dennis Hampson, the blind bard of Maggiligan, of whom an interesting account has been given by lady Morgan, in "The Wild Irish Girl." The "Atheneum," from whence this notice is extracted, relates, that only a few hours before his decease he tuned his harp, that he might have it in readiness to entertain sir H. Bruce's family, who were expected to pass that way in a few days, and who were in the habit of stopping to hear his music; suddenly, however, he felt the approach of death, and calling his family around him resigned his breath without a struggle, and in perfect possession of his faculties to the last moment. A kindred spirit produced the following tribute to the memory of this "aged son of song." He was the oldest of the Irish bards.

The fame of the brave shall no longer be sounded,
    The last of our bards now sleeps cold in his grave;
Maggiligan rocks, where his lays have resounded,
    Grown dark at the ocean, and spurn at the wave.

For, Hampson, no more shall thy soul-touching finger
    Steal sweet o'er the strings, and wild melody pour;
No more near thy hut shall the villagers linger,
    While strains from thy harp warble soft round the shore

No more thy harp swells with entraptured emotion,
    Thy wild gleams of fancy for ever are fled,
No longer thy minstrelsy charms the rude ocean,
    That rolls near the green turf that pillows thy head.

Yet vigour and youth with birght visions had fired thee,
    And rose-buds of health have blown deep on thy cheek;
The songs of the sweet bards of Erin inspired thee,
    And urged thee to wander like laurels to seek.

Yes, oft has thous sung of our kings crown'd with glory,
    Or, sighing, repeated the lover's fond lay;
And oft hast thou sung of the bards famed in story,
    Whose wild notes of rapture have long past away.

Thy grave shall be screen'd from the blast and the billow,
    Around it a fence shall posterity raise;
Erin's children shall wet with their tears thy cold pillow,
    Her youths shall lament thee, and carol thy praise.

This is the eve of the Epiphany, or Twelfth-night eve, and is a night of preparation in some parts of England for the merriments which, to the present hour, distinguish Twelfth-day. Dr. Drake mentions that it was a practice formerly for itinerant minstrels to bear a bowl of spiced-wine to the houses of the gentry and others, from whom they expected a hospitable reception, and, calling their bowl a wassail-bowl, to drink wassail to their entertainers. These merry sounds of mirth and music are not extinct. There are still places wherein the wandering blower of a clarionet, and the poor scraper of as poor a fiddle, will this evening strain their instruments, to charm forth the rustic from his dwelling, and drink to him from a jug of warm ale, spiced with a race of ginger, in the hope of a pittance for their melody, and their wish of wassail. Of the wassail-bowl, much will appear before the reader in the after pages of this work.

In certain parts of Devonshire, the farmer, attended by his workmen, with a large pitcher of cider, goes to the orchard this evening; and there, encircling one of the best bearing trees, they drink the following toast three times:

          "Here's to thee, old apple-tree,
  hence thou mayst bud, and whence thou mayst blow!
And whence thou mayst bear apples enow!
         Hats full! caps full!
         Bushel—bushel—sacks full,
         And my pockets full too! Huzza!"

This done, they return to the house, the doors of which they are sure to find bolted by the females, who, be the weather what it may, are inexorable to all entreaties to open them till some one has guessed at what is on the spit, which is generally some nice little thing, difficult to be hit on, and is the reward of him who first names it. The doors are then thrown open, and the lucky clodpole receives the tit-bit as his recompense. Some are so superstitious as to believe, that if they neglect this custom, the trees will bear no apples that year. To the preceding particulars, which are related in the Gentleman's Magazine for 1791, may be added that Brand, on the authority of a Cornishman, relates it as a custom with the Devonshire people to go after supper into the orchard, with a large milk-pan full of cider, having roasted apples pressed into it. "Out of this each person in company takes, what is called a clayen cup, that is an earthenware cup full of liquor, and standing under each of the more fruitful apple-trees, passing by those that are not good bearers, he addreses it in the following words:

' Health to thee, good apple-tree,
Well to bear, pocket-fulls, hat-fulls,
Peck-fulls, bushel-bag-fulls !'

And then drinking up part of the contents, he throws the rest, with the fragments of the roasted apples, at the tree. At each cup the company set up a shout."

Pennant, in his tour in Scotland, says respecting this custom, that after they have drank a cheerful glass to their master's health, with success to the future harvests, and expressed their good wishes in the same way, they feast off cakes made of caraways and other seeds soaked in cider, which they claim as a reward for their past labours in sowing the grain. "This," says Pennant, "Seems to resemble a custom of the ancient Danes, who, in their addresses to their rural deities, emptied, on every invocation, a cup in honour of them."

So also Brand tells us that, in Here fordshire, "at the approach of evening on the vigil of the twelfth day, the farmers, with their friends and servants, meet together, and about six o'clock walk out to a field where wheat is growing. In the highest part of the ground, twelve small fires and one large one are lighted up. The attendants, headed by the master of the family, pledge the company in old cider, which circulates freely on these occasions. A circle is formed round the large fire, when a general shout and hallooing takes place, which you hear answered from all the adjacent villages and fields. Sometimes fifty or sixty of these fires may be all seen at once. This being finished, the company return home, where the good housewife and her maids are preparing a good supper. A large cake is always provided, with a hole in the middle. After supper, the company all attend the bailiff (or head of the oxen) to the wain-house, where the following particulars are observed. The master, at the head of his friends, fills the cup, (generally of strong ale,) and stands opposite the first of finest of the oxen. He then pledges him in a curious toast: the company follow his example with all the other oxen, addressing each by his name. This being finished, the large cake is produced, and, with much ceremony, put on the horn of the first ox, through the hole above-mentioned. The ox is then tickled, to make him toss his head: if he throw the cake behind, then it is the mistress's perquisite; if before, (in what is termed the boosy,) the bailiff himself claims the prize. the company then return to the house, the doors of which they find locked, nor will they be opened till some joyous songs are sung. On their gaining admittance, a scene of mirth and jollity ensues, and which lasts the greatest part of the night."

Mr. Beckwith elates in the Gentleman's Magazine, 1784, that "near Leeds, in Yorkshire, when he was a boy, it was customary for many families, on the twelfth eve of Christmas, to invite their relations, friends, and neighbours, to their houses, to play at cards, and to partake of a supper, of which minced pies were an indispensable ingredient; and after supper was brought in, the wassail cup or wassail bowl, of which every one partook, by taking with a spoon, out of the ale, a roasted apple, and eating it, and then drinking the healths of the company out of the bowl, wishing them a merry Christmas and a happy new year. (The festi val of Christmas used in this part of the country to hold for twenty days, and some persons extended it to Candlemas.) The ingredients put into the bowl, viz. ale, sugar, nutmeg, and roasted apples, were usually called lambs'-wool, and the night on which it is used to be drunk (generally on twelfth eve) was commonly called Wassil eve." The glossary to the Exmore dialect has "Watsail—a drinking song on twelfth-day eve, throwing toast to the apple-trees, in order to have a fruitful year, which seems to be a relic of the heathen sacrifice to Pomona."

Brand found it observed in the ancient calendar of the Romish church, that on the fifth day of January, the eve or vigil of the Epiphany, there were "kings created or elected by beans;" that the sixth of the month is called "The Festival of Kings;" and "that this ceremony of electing kings was continued with feasting for many days."

Twelfth-night eve or the vigil of the Epiphany is no way observed in London. There Twelfth-day itself comes with little of the pleasure that it offered to our forefathers. Such observances have rapidly disappeared, and the few that remain are still more rapidly declining. To those who are unacquainted with their origin they afford no associations to connect the present with former ages; and without such feelings, the few occasions which enable us to show a hospitable disposition, or from whence we can obtain unconstrained cheerfulness, will pass away, and be remembered only as having been.



January 6.

Epiphany. { Close holiday at all public offices except Stamp, Customs, and Excise.

St. Melanius. St. Peter. St. Nilammon.

St. Peter was a disciple of Gregory the Great, the first abbot of St. Augustine's monastery at Canterbury, and drowned in 608 while proceeding on a voyage to France. According to Cressy, the inhabitants buried his body without knowing anything about him, till "a heavenly light appeared every night over his sepulture," when they held an inquest and a count Fumert buried him in the church of Boulogne. From a quotation in Patrick, it appears that a weasel who gnawed his robe was found dead upon it for his sauciness.


The Rev. Thomas Dudley Fosbroke, M. A. F. A. S., &c. whose "Encyclopædia of Antiquities" has been already cited from, is the author of "British Monachism, or, Manners and Customs of the Monks and Nuns of England," 4to. 1817; a most erudite work, wherein he gives an account, from Du Cange, of the Feast of the Star, or Office of the Three Kings, a catholic service performed on this day. "Three priests, clothed as kings, with their servants carrying offerings, met from different directions of the church before the altar. The middle one, who came from the east, pointed with his staff to a star: a dialogue then ensued; and after kissing each other, they began to sing, 'Let us go and inquire;' after which the precentor began a responsory, 'Let the Magi come.' A procession then commenced, and as soon as it began to enter the nave, a crown like a star, hanging before the cross, was lighted up, and pointed out to the Magi, with 'Behold the star in the east.' This being concluded, two priests, standing at each side of the altar, answered, meekly, 'We are those whom you seek,' and drawing a curtain showed them a child, whom, falling down, they worshipped. Then the servants made the offerings of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, which were divided among the priests. The Magi in the mean while continued praying till they dropped asleep; when a boy clothed in an alb, like an angel, addressed them with, 'All things which the prophets said are fulfilled.' The festival concluded with chanting services, &c."

Mr. Fosbroke adds, that at Soissons a rope was let down from the roof of the church, to which was annexed an iron circle, having seven tapers, intended to represent Lucifer, or the morning star.

The three persons honoured by this service, and called kings, were the three wise men who, in catholic works, are usually denominated the Three Kings of Cologne. Cressy tells us, that the empress Helena, who died about the year 328, brought their bodies from the east to Constantinople; from whence they were transferred to Milan, and afterwards, in 1164, on Milan being taken by the emperor Frederick, presented by him to the archbishop of Cologne, who put them in the principal church of that city, "in which place," says Cressy, "they are to this day celebrated with great veneration." Patrick quotes a prayer to them from the romish service, beginning "O, king Jaspar, king Melchior, king Balthasar;" and he says that the Salisbury Missal states their offerings to have been disposed of in this way:—"Joseph kept of the gold as much as him needed, to pay his tribute to the emperor, and also to keep our lady with while she lay in childbed, and the rest he gave to the poor. The incense he burnt to take off the stench of the stable there as she lay in; and with the myrrh, our lady anointed her child, to keep him from worms and disease." Patrick makes several observations on the service to these three kings of Cologne, and as to the credibility of their story; and he inquires what good this prayer will do to Jaspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, when another tradition says their names were Apellius, Amerus, and Damascus; third, that they were Magalath, Galgalath, and Sarasin; and a fourth, Ator, Sator, and Peratoras? which last, Patrick says, he should choose in this uncertainty to call them by, as having the more kingly sound, if it had not been that Casaubon represents these three, "together with Misael, Achael, Cyriacus, and Stephanus, (the names of the four shepherds that came to visit our Lord in Bethlehem,) had been use (and he tells how) for a charm to cure the biting of serpents and other venomous beasts." Patrick gives other prayers to these three kings, one of the from the "Hours of the Virgin," and also quotes this miraculous anecdote; that one John Aprilius, when he was hanged, implored the patronage of the three kings of Cologne; the consequence of which seems to have been, that after he had been hung three days and was cut down, he was found alive; whereupon he came to Cologne half naked, with his halter about his neck, and returned thanks to his deliverers.


Such are the scenes, that, at the front and side
       Of the Twelfth-cake-shops, scatter wild dismay;
As up the slipp'ry curb, or pavement wide,
       We seek the pastrycooks, to keep Twelfth-day;
While ladies stand aghast, in speechless trance,
Look round—dare not go back—and yet dare not advance.

In London, with every pastrycook in the city, and at the west end of the town, it is "high change" of Twelfth-day. From the taking down of the shutters in the morning, he, and his men, with additional assistants, male and female, are fully occupied by attending to the dressing out of the window, executing orders of the day before, receiving fresh ones, or supplying the wants of chance customers. Before dusk the important arrangement of the window is completed. Then the gas is turned on, with supernumerary argand-lamps and manifold wax-lights, to illuminate countless cakes of all prices and dimensions, that stand in rows and piles on the counters and sideboards, and in the windows. The richest in flavour and heaviest in weight and price are placed on large and massy salvers; one, enormously superior to the rest in size, is the chief object of curiosity; and all are decorated with all imaginable images of things animate and inanimate. Stars, castles, kings, cottages, dragons, trees, fish, palaces, cats, dogs, churches, lions, milk-maids, knights, serpents, and innumerable other forms in snow-white confection- ary, painted with variegated colours, glitter by "excess of light" from mirrors against the walls festooned with artificial "wonders of Flora." This "paradise of dainty devices," is crowded by successive and successful desirers of the seasonable delicacies, while alternate tapping of hammers and peals of laughter, from the throng surrounding the house, excite smiles from the inmates.

The cause of these sounds may be inferred from something like this passing outside.

Constable. Make way, make way! Clear the way! You boys stand aside!

Countryman. What is all this; is any body ill in the shop?

1st Boy. Nobody, sir; it's only Twelfth day!

2d Boy. This is a pastrycook's, sir; look at the window! There they stand! What cakes!

3d Boy. What pretty ones these are!

4th Boy. Only see that!

5th Boy. Why it's as large as the hind-wheel of a coach, and how thick!

6th Boy. Ah! it's too big to come out at the door, unless they roll it out.

7th Boy. What elegant figures, and what lots of sweetmeats!

8th Boy. See the flowers; they look almost like real ones.

Countryman. What a crowd inside!

9th Boy. How the people of the house are packing up all the good things!

Countryman. What a beautiful lady that is behind the counter!

10th Boy. Which?

Countryman. Why the young one!

10th Boy. What her? oh, she's the pastrycook's daughter, and the other's her mother.

Countryman. No, no; not her; I mean her, there.

10th Boy. Oh, her; she's the shopwoman; all the pastrycooks always try to get handsome ladies to serve in the shop!

11th Boy. I say, I say! halloo! here's a piece of work! Look at this gentleman—next to me—his coat-tail's nailed to the window! Look, look!

Countryman. Aye, what?

All the boys. Ah! ah! ah! Huzza.

Countryman. Who nailed my coat-tail? Constable!

12th Boy. That's the boy that's got the hammer!

2d Boy. What me? why that's the boy—there; and there's another boy ham- mering! and there's a man with a hammer!

1st Boy. Who pinned that woman to the gentleman? Why there's a dozen pinned together.

Countryman. Constable! constable!

2d Boy. Here comes the constable. Hark at him!

Const. Clear away from the doors! Let the customers go in! Make way! Let the cakes come out! Go back, boy!

13th Boy. If you please, Mr. Constable, I'm going to buy a cake!

Const. Go forward, then!

Man with cakes. By your leave! by your leave!

Const. Clear the way!

All the Boys. Huzza! huzza! More people pinned — and plenty nailed up!——

To explain, to those who may be ignorant of the practice. On Twelfth-night in London, boys assemble round the inviting shops of the pastrycooks, and dexterously nail the coat-tails of spectators, who venture near enough, to the bottoms of the window frames; or pin them together strongly by their clothes. Sometimes eight or ten persons find themselves thus connected. The dexterity and force of the nail driving is so quick and sure, that a single blow seldom fails of doing the business effectually. Withdrawal of the nail without a proper instrument is out of the question; and, consequently, the person nailed must either leave part of his coat, as a cognizance of his attachment, or quit the spot with a hole in it. At every nailing and pinning shouts of laughter arise from the perpetrators and the spectators. Yet it often happens to one who turns and smiles at the duress of another, that he also finds himself nailed. Efforts at extrication increase mirth, nor is the presence of a constable, who is usually employed to attend and preserve free "ingress, egress, and regress," sufficiently awful to deter the offenders.

Scarcely a shop in London that offers a halfpenny plain bun to the purchase of a hungry boy, is without Twelfth-cakes and finery in the windows on Twelfth-day. The gingerbread-bakers—there are not many, compared with their number when the writer was a consumer of their manufactured goods,—even the reduced gingerbread-cakes periwig a few plum-buns with sugar-frost to-day, and coaxingly interpolate them among their new made sixes, bath-cakes, parliament, and ladies' fingers. Their staple-ware has leaves of untarnished dutch-gilt stuck on; their upright cylinder-shaped show-glasses, containing peppermint-drops, elecampane, sugar-sticks, hard-bake, brandy-balls, and bulls'-eyes, are carefully polished; their lolly-pops are fresh encased, and look as white as the stems of tobacco pipes; and their candlesticks are ornamented with fillets and bosses of writing paper; or, if the candles rise from the bottom of inverted glass cones, they shine more sparkling for the thorough cleaning of their receivers in the morning.

How to eat Twelfth-cake requires no recipe; but how to provide it, and draw the characters, on the authority of Rachel Revel's "Winter Evening Pastimes," may be acceptable. First, buy your cake. Then, before your visitors arrive, buy your characters, each of which should have a pleasant verse beneath. Next look at your invitation list, and count the number of ladies you expect; and afterwards the number of gentlemen. Then, take as many female characters as you have invited ladies; fold them up, exactly of the same size, and number each on the back; taking care to make the king No. 1, and the queen No. 2. Then prepare and number the gentlemen's characters. Cause tea and coffee to be handed to your visitors as they drop in. When all are assembled and tea over, put as many ladies' characters in a reticule as there are ladies present; next put the gentlemen's characters in a hat. Then call on a gentleman to carry the reticule to the ladies as they sit, from which each lady is to draw one ticket, and to preserve it unopened. Select a lady to bear the hat to the gentlemen for the same purpose. There will be one ticket left in the reticule, and another in the hat, which the lady and gentleman who carried each is to interchange, as having fallen to each. Next, arrange your visitors according to their numbers; the king No. 1, the queen No. 2, and so on. The king is then to recite the verse on his ticket; then the queen the verse on hers; and so the characters are to proceed in numerical order. This done, let the cake and refreshments go round, and hey! for merriment!

They come! they come! each blue-eyed sport,
The Twelfth-night king and all his court—
   'Tis Mirth fresh crown'd with mistletoe!
Music with her merry fiddles,
   Joy "on light fantastic toe,"
Wit with all his jests and riddles,
   Singing and dancing as they go.
And Love, young Love, among the rest,
A welcome — nor unbidden guest.

Twelfth-day is now only commemorated by the custom of choosing a king and queen. "I went," says a correspondent in the Universal Magazine for 1774, "to a friend's house in the country to partake of some of those innocent pleasures that constitute a merry Christmas. I did not return till I had been present at drawing king and queen, and eaten a slice of the Twelfth-cake, made by the fair hands of my good friend's consort. After tea yesterday, a noble cake was produced, and two bowls containing the fortunate chances for the different sexes. Our host filled up the tickets; the whole company, except the king and queen, were to be ministers of state, maids of honour, or ladies of the bed-chamber. Our kind host and hostess, whether by design or accident, became king and queen. According to Twelfth-day law, each party is to support their character till midnight." The mainte nance of character is essential to the drawing. Within the personal observation of the writer of these sheets, character has never been preserved. It must be admitted, however, that the Twelfth-night characters sold by the pastrycooks, are either commonplace or gross—when genteel they are inane; when humorous, they are vulgar.

Young folks anticipate Twelfth-night as a full source of innocent glee to their light little hearts. Where, and what is he who would negative hopes of happiness for a few short hours in the day-spring of life? A gentle spirit in the London Magazine beautifully sketches a scene of juvenile enjoyment this evening: "I love to see an acre of cake spread out—the sweet frost covering the rich earth below—studded all over with glittering flowers, like ice-plants, and red and green knots of sweetmeat, and hollow yellow crusted crowns, and kings and queens, and their paraphernalia. I delight to see [a] score of happy children sitting huddled all round the dainty fare, eyeing the cake and each other, with faces sunny enough to thaw the white snow. I like to see the gazing silence which is kept so religiously while the large knife goes its round, and the glistening eyes which feed beforehand on the huge slices, dark with citron and plums, and heavy as gold. And then, when the "Characters" are drawn, is it nothing to watch the peeping delight which escapes from their little eyes? One is proud, as king; another stately, as queen; then there are two whispering grotesque secrets which they cannot contain (those are sir Gregory Goose and sir Tunbelly Clumsy.) The boys laugh out at their own misfortunes; but the little girls (almost ashamed of their prizes) sit blushing and silent. It is not until the lady of the house goes round, that some of the more extravagant fictions are revealed. And then, what roar of mirth! Ha, ha! The ceiling shakes, and the air is torn. They bound from their seats like kids, and insist on seeing Miss Thompson's card. Ah! what merry spite is proclaimed—what ostentatious pity! The little girl is almost in tears; but the large lump of allotted cake is placed seasonably in her hands, and the glass of sweet wine 'all round' drowns the shrill urchin laughter, and a gentler delight prevails." Does not this make a charming picture?

There is some difficulty in collecting accounts of the manner wherein Twelfth-night is celebrated in the country. In "Time's Telescope," an useful and entertaining annual volume, there is a short reference to the usage in Cumberland, and other northern parts of England. It seems that on Twelfth-night, which finishes their Christmas holidays, the rustics meet in a large room. They begin dancing at seven o'clock, and finish at twelve, when they sit down to lobscouse, and ponsondie; the former is made of beef, potatoes, and onions fried together; and in ponsondie we recognise the wassail or waes-hael of ale, boiled with sugar and nutmeg, into which are put roasted apples,—the anciently admired lambs'-wool. The feast is paid for by subscription: two women are chosen, who with two wooden bowls placed one within the other, so as to leave an opening and a space between them, go round to the female part of the society in succession and what one puts into the uppermost bowl the attendant collectress slips into the bowl beneath it. All are expected to contribute something, but not more than a shilling, and they are best esteemed who give most. The men choose two from themselves, and follow the same custom, except that as the gentlemen are not supposed to be altogether so fair in their dealings as the ladies, one of the collectors is furnished with pen, ink, and paper, to set down the subscriptions as soon as received.

If a satirical prophecy in "Vox Graculi," 4to. 1623, may be relied on as authority, it bears testimony to the popularity of Twelfth-night at that period. On the 6th of January the author declares, that "this day, about the houses of 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10, yea, in some places till midnight well nigh, will be such a massacre of spice-bread, that, ere the next day at noon, a two-penny browne loafer will set twenty poore folkes teeth on edge. Which hungry humour will hold so violent, that a number of good fellowes will not refuse to give a statute-marchant of all the lands and goods they enjoy, for half-a-crown's worth of two-penny pasties." He further affirms, that there will be "on this night much masking in the Strand, Cheapside, Holbourne, or Fleet-street."

"The twelve days of Christmas," as the extent of its holidays, were proverbial; but among labourers, in some parts, the Christmas festivities did not end till Candlemas. Old Tusser, in his "Five Hundred Points of good Husbandry," would have the merriments end in six days; he begins January with this advice to the countrymen:

When Christmas is ended,
          bid feasting adue [sic],
Goe play the good husband,
          thy stock to renue:
Be mindful of rearing,
          in hope of a gaine,
Dame Profit shall give thee
          reward for thy paine.

This was the recommendation of prudence tempered by kindness; a desire for diligence in the husbandman, with an allowance of reasonable pastime to sweeten his labour.

From Naogeorgus, in "The Popish Kingdome," a poem before quoted, and which will be frequently referred to for its lore regarding our ancient customs, it is to be gathered, that the king of Twelfth-night, after the manner of royalty, appointed his officers. He himself attained his dignity thus:

Then also every householder,
     to his abilitie,
Doth make a mightie cake, that may
     suffice his companie:
Herein a pennie doth he put,
     before it come to fire,
This he divides according as
     his householde doth require,
And every peece distributeth,
     as round about they stand,
Which in their names unto the poore
     is given out of hand:
But who so chaunceth on the peece
     wherein the money lies,
Is counted king amongst them all,
     and is with showtes and cries
Exalted to the heavens up.

Mr. Fosbroke notices, that "the cake was full of plums, with a bean in it for the king, and a pea for the queen, so as to determine them by the slices. Sometimes a penny was put in the cake, and the person who obtained it, becoming king, crossed all the beams and rafters of the house against devils. A chafing-dish with burning frankincense was also lit, and the odour snuffed up by the whole family, to keep off disease for the year. After this, the master and mistress went round the house with the pan, a taper, and a loaf, against witchcraft."

So far Mr. Fosbroke abridges Naogeorgus's account, which goes on to say, that

     — in these days beside,
They judge what weather all the yeare
     shall happen and betide:
Ascribing to each day a month,
     and at this present time,
The youth in every place doe flocke,
     and all apparel'd fine,
With pypars through the streetes they runne,
     and singe at every dore.

     *      *      *      *      *

The cities are, where boyes and gyrles,
     together still do runne,
About the streete with like, as soone
     as night beginnes to come,
And bring abrode their wassel bowles,
     who well rewarded bee,
With cakes and cheese, and great good cheare,
     and money plenteouslee.

Queen Elizabeth's Progresses by Mr. Nichols, contain an entertainment to her at Sudley, wherein were Melibæus, the king of the Bean, and Nisa, the queen of the Pea.

"Mel. Cut the cake: who hath the beane, shall be King; and where the peaze is, she shall be Queene.

"Nis. I have the peaze, and must be Queene.

"Mel. I have the beane, and King; I must commande."

Pinkerton's "Ancient Scotish Poems," contain a letter from sir Thomas Randolph, queen Elizabeth's chamberlain of the Exchequer, to Dudley lord Leicester, dated from Edinburgh on the 15 January, 1563, wherein he mentions, that Lady Flemyng was "Queen of the Beene" on Twelfth-day in that year: and in Ben Jonson's Masque of Christmas, Baby-cake, one of the characters, is attended by "an Usher, bearing a great cake with a bean and a pease." Herrick, the poet of our festivals, has several allusions to the celebration of this day by our ancestors: the poem here subjoined, recognises its customs with strict adherence to truth, and in pleasant strains of joyousness.


      Now, now the mirth comes
      With the cake full of plums,
Where beane's the king of the sport here
      Beside, we must know,
      The pea also
Must revell, as queene in the court here.

      Begin then to chuse,
      This night as ye use,
Who shall for the present delight here,
      Be a king by the lot,
      And who shall not
Be Twelfe-day queene for the night here.

      Which knowne, let us make
      Joy-sops with the cake;
And let not a man then be seen here,
      Who unurg'd will not drinke,
      To the base from the brink,
A health to the king and the queen here.

      Next crowne the bowl ful,
      With gentle lambs-wooll;
Adde sugar, nutmeg, and ginger,
      With store of ale, too;
      And thus ye must doe
To make the wassaile a swinger.

      Give them to the king
      And queene wassailing;
And though with ale ye be whet here;
      Yet part ye from hence,
      As free from offence,
As when ye innocent met here.

A citation by Brand represents the ancient Twelfth-night cake to have been composed of flour, honey, ginger, and pepper. The maker thrust in, at random, a small coin as she was kneading it, When baked, it was divided into as many parts as there were persons in the family, and each had his share. Portions of it were also assigned to Christ, the Virgin, and the three Magi, and were given in alms.

On Twelfth-day the people of Germany and the students of its academies chose a king with great ceremony and sumptuous feastings.

In France, the Twelfth-cake is plain, with a bean; the drawer of the slice containing the bean is king or queen. All drink to her or his majesty, who reigns, and receives homage from all, during the evening. There is no other drawing, and consequently the sovereign is the only distinguished character. In Normandy they place child under the table, which is so covered with a cloth that he cannot see; and when the cake is divided, one of the company taking up the first piece, cries out, "Fabe Domini pour qui?" The child answers, "Pour le bon Dieu:" and in this manner the pieces are allotted to the company. If the bean be found in the piece for the "bond Dieu," the king is chosen by drawing long or short straws. Whoever gets the bean chooses the king or queen, according as it happens to be a man or woman. According to Brand, under the old order of things, the Epiphany was kept at the French court by one of the courtiers being chosen king, and the other nobles attended an entertainment on the occaion; but, in 1792, during the revolution, La Fête de Rois was abolished; Twelfth-day was ordered to be called La Fête de Sans-Culottes; the old feast was declared anti-civic and any priest keeping it was deemed a royalist. The Literary Pocket Book affirms, that at La Fête de Rois the French monarch and his nobles waited on the Twelfth-night king, and that the custom was not revived on the return of the Bourbons, but that instead of it the royal family washed the feet of some people and gave them alms.

There is a difference of opinion as to the origin of Twelfth-day. Brand says, "that though its customs vary in different countries, yet they concur in the same end, that is, to do honour to the Eastern Magi." He afterwards observes, "that the practice of choosing 'king,' on Twelfth-day, is similar to a custom that existed among the ancient Greeks and Romans, who, on the festival days of Saturn, about this season of the year, drew lots for kingdoms, and like kings exercised their temporary authority." Indeed, it appears, that the question is almost at rest. Mr. Fosbroke affirms that "the king of Saturnalia was elected by beans, and that from thence came our king and queen on this day." The coincidence of the election by beans having been common to both customs, leaves scarcely the possibility of doubt that ours is a continuation of the heathen practice under another name. Yet "some of the observances on this day are the remains of Druidical, and other superstitious ceremonies." On these points, if Mr. Fosbroke's Dictionary of Antiquities be consulted by the curious inquirer, he will there find the authorities, and be in other respects gratified.

The Epiphany is called Twelfth-day, because it falls on the twelfth day after Christmas-day. Epiphany signifies manifestation, and is applied to this day because it is the day whereon Christ was manifested to the Gentiles. Bourne in his Vulgar Antiquities, which is the substructure of Brand's Popular Antiquities, remarks that this is the greatest of the twelve holidays, and is therefore more jovially observed, by the visiting of friends and Christmas gambols, than any other.

Finally, on observances of this festival not connected with the Twelfth-night king and queen. It is a custom in many parishes in Gloucestershire on this day to light up twelve small fires and one large one; this is mentioned by Brand: and Mr. Fosbroke relates, that in some countries twelve fires of straw are made in the fields "to burn the old witch," and that the people sing, drink, and dance around it, and practise other ceremonies in continuance. He takes "the old witch" to be the Druidical God of Death. It is stated by sir Henry Piers, in Vallencey's "Collectanea," that, at Westmeath, "on Twelve-eve in Christmas, they use [sic] to set up as high as they can a sieve of oats, and in it a dozen of candles set round, and in the centre one larger, all lighted; this in memory of our saviour and his apostles, lights of the world." Sir Henry's inference may reasonably be doubted; the custom is probably of higher antiquity than he seems to have suspected.

A very singular merriment in the Isle of Man is mentioned by Waldron, in his history of that place. He says, that "during the whole twleve days of Christ mas, there is not a barn unoccupied, and that every parish hires fiddlers at the public charge. On Twelfth-day, the fiddler lays his head in some one of the girls' laps, and a third person asks, who such a maid, or such a maid shall marry, naming the girls then present one after another; to which he answers according to his own whim, or agreeable to the intimacies he has taken notice of during this time of merriment. But whatever he says is as absolutely depended on as an oracle; and if he happens to couple two people who have an aversion to each other, tears and vexation succeed the mirth. This they call cutting off the fiddler's head; for, after this, he is dead for the whole year."

It appears from the Gentleman's Magazine, that on Twelfth-day 1731, the king and the prince at the chapel royal, St. James's, made their offerings at the altar, of gold, frankincense, and myrrh, according to custom, and that at night their majesties, &c. played at hazard for the benefit of the groom-porter. These offerings which clearly originate from the Roman church, and are not analogous to any ceremony of the church of England, continue to be annually made; with this difference, however, that the king is represented by proxy in the person of some distinguished officer of the household. In other respects the proceedings are conducted with the usual state.


Midwinter is over. According to astronomical reckoning, we have just passed that point in the earth's orbit, where the north pole is turned most from the sun. This position is represented in the diagram above, by the direction of the terminator, or boundary line of light and darkness, which is seen to divide the globe into two equal parts; the north pole, which is the upper pole in the figure, and all parts within 321/2 degrees, being enveloped in constant darkness. We now trace the sun among the stars of the constellation Capricorn or sea-goat, and it is winter in the whole northern hemisphere. At the beginning of January the earth is at its least distance from the sun, which is proved by measuring the apparent magnitude of that luminary by means of an instrument called a micrometer, his disc being now about 32 minutes of a degree; whereas at the opposite season, or at the beginning of July, near our Midsummer, his apparent diameter is only about 31 minutes. The coldness of winter therefore does not depend on the distance of the earth from the sun, but on the very oblique or slanting direction of his rays; less heat falling on any given part of the earth, than when the rays fall more direct. From the slanting direction of his rays they pass through a more dense region of the atmosphere, and are somewhat intercepted; while another cause of the cold is the shortness of our days and the length of our nights; the sun continuing only about seven hours and a half above the horizon, while he is absent for about sixteen hours and a half.

This position of the earth relatively to the sun is exemplified in the Popular Lectures on Astronomy, now delivering at the Assembly-room, Paul's Head, Cateaton-street, by Mr. John Wallis, on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. His explanations of this noble science are familiarly and beautifully illustrated, by an original and splendid apparatus devised and constructed by his own hands. It consists of extensive mechanism and numerous brilliant transparencies. Mr. Wallis's lectures on Tuesday and Thursday next, the 18th and 20th of January, 1825, are under the patronage of the Lord Mayor. Here is a sure mode of acquiring astonomical knowledge, accompanied by the delightful gratification of witnessing a display of the heavens more bewitching than the mind can conceive. Ladies, and young persons especially, have a delightful opportunity of being agreeably entertained by the novelty and beauty of the exhibition and the eloquent descriptions of the enlightened lecturer.

The holly with its red berries, and the "fond ivy," still stick about our houses to maintain the recollection of the seasonable festivities. Let us hope that we may congratulate each other on having, while we kept them, kept ourselves within compass. Merriment without discretion is an abuse for which nature is sure to punish us. She may suffer our violence for a while in silence; but she is certain to resume her rights at the expense of our health, and put us to heavy charges to maintain our existence.



January 7.

St. Lucian. St. Cedd. St. Kentigerna. St. Aldric. St. Thillo. St. Canut.

St. Lucian.

This saint is in the calendar of the church of England on the following day, 8th of January. He was a learned Syrian. According to Butler, he corrected the Hebrew version of the Scriptures for the inhabitants of Palestine, during some years was separated from the Romish church, afterwards conformed to it, and died after nine years imprisonment, either by famine or the sword, on this day, in the year 312. It further appears from Butler, that the Arians affirmed of St. Lucian, that to him Arius was indebted for his distinguishing doctrine, which Butler however denies.


The day after Twelfth-day was so called because it was celebrated in honour of the rock, which is a distaff held in the hand, from whence wool is spun by twirling a ball below. It seems that the burning of the flax and tow belonging to the women, was the men's diversion in the evening of the first day of labour after the twelve days of Christmas, and that the women repaid the interruption to their industry by sluicing the mischief-makers. Herrick tells us of the custom in his Hesperides:—

St. Distaff's day, or the morrow after Twelfth-day.

Partly work, and partly play,
Ye must on S. Distaff's day:
From the plough soone free your teame,
Then come home and fother them.
If the maides a spinning goe,
Burne the flax, and fire the tow;
* * *
Bring in pailes of water then,
Let the maides bewash the men:
Give S. Distaffe all the right,
Then bid Christmas sport good-night.
And next morrow, every one
To his own vocation.

In elder times, when boisterous diversions were better suited to the simplicity of rustic life than to the comparative refinement of our own, this contest between fire and water must have afforded great amusement.


1772. "An authentic, candid, and circumstancial narrative of the astonishing transactions at Stockwell, in the county of Surrey, on Monday and Tuesday, the 6th and 7th days of January, 1772, containing a series of the most surprising and unaccountable events that ever happened; which continued from first to last upwards of twenty hours, and at different places. Published with the consent and approbation of the family, and other parties concerned, to authenticate which, the original Copy is signed by them."

This is the title of an octavo tract published in "London, printed for J. Marks, bookseller, in St. Martin's-lane, 1772." It describes Mrs. Golding, an elderly lady, at Stockwell, in whose house the transactions happened, as a woman of unblemished honour and character; her niece, Mrs. Pain, as the wife of a farmer at Brixton-causeway, the mother of several children, and well known and respected in the parish; Mary Martin as an elderly woman, servant to Mr. and Mrs. Pain, with whom she had lived two years, having previously lived four years with Mrs. Golding, from whom she went into Mrs. Pain's service; and Richard Fowler and Sarah, his wife, as an honest, industrious, and sober couple, who lived about opposite to Mr. Pain, and the Brick-pound. These were the subscribing witnesses to many of the surprising transactions, which were likewise witnessed by some others. Another person who bore a principal part in these scenes was Ann Robinson, aged about twenty years, who had lived servant with Mrs. Golding but one week and three days. The "astonishing transactions" in Mrs. Golding's house were these:

On Twelfth-day 1772, about ten o'clock in the forenoon, as Mrs. Golding was in her parlour, she heard the china and glasses in the back kitchen tumble down and break; her maid came to her and told her the stone plates were falling from the shelf; Mrs. Golding went into the kitchen and saw them broke. Presently after, a row of plates from the next shelf fell down likewise, while she was there, and nobody near them; this astonished her much, and while she was thinking about it, other things in different places began to tumble about, some of them breaking, attended with violent noises all over the house; a clock tumbled down and the case broke; a lantern tht hung on the staircase was thrown down and the glass broke to pieces; an earthen pan of salted beef broke to pieces and the beef fell about; all this increased her surprise, and brought several persons about her, among whom was Mr. Rowlidge, a carpenter, who gave it as his opinion that the foundation was giving way and that the house was tumbling down, occasioned by the too great weight of an additional room erected above: "so ready," says the narrative, "are we to discover natural causes for every thing."

Mrs. Golding ran into Mr. Gresham's house, next door to her, where she fainted, and in the interim, Mr. Rowlidge, and other persons, were removing Mrs. Golding's effects from her house, for fear of the consequences prognosticated. At this time all was quiet; Mrs. Golding's maid remaining in her house, was gone up stairs, and when called upon several times to come down, for fear of the dangerous situation she was thought to be in, she answered very coolly, and after some time came down deliberately, without any seeming fearful apprehensions.

Mrs. Pain was sent for from Brixton-causeway, and desired to come directly, as her aunt was supposed to be dead;—this was the message to her. When Mrs. Pain came, Mrs. Golding was come to herself, but very faint from terror.

Among the persons who were present, was Mr. Gardner, a surgeon, of Clapham, whom Mrs. Pain desired to bleed her aunt, which he did; Mrs. Pain asked him if the blood should be thrown away; he deisred it might not, as he would examine it when cold. These minute particulars would not be taken notice of, but as a chain to what follows. For the next circumstance is of a more astonishing nature than any thing that had preceded it; the blood that was just congealed, sprung out of the basin upon the floor, and presently after the basin broke to pieces; this china basin was the only thing broke belonging to Mr. Gresham; a bottle of rum that stood by it broke at the same time.

Among the things that were removed to Mr. Gresham's was a tray full of china, &c. a japan bread-basket, some mahogany waiters, with some bottles of liquors, jars of pickles, &c. and a pier glass, which was taken down by Mr. Saville, (a neighbour of Mrs. Golding's;) he gave it to one Robert Hames, who laid it on the grass-plat at Mr. Gresham's; but before he could put it out of his hands, some parts of the frame on each side flew off; it raining at that time, Mrs. Golding desired it might be brought into the parlour, where it was put under a side-board, and a dressing-glass along with it; it had not been there long before the glasses and china which stood on the side-board, began to tumble about and fall down, and broke both the glasses to pieces. Mr. Saville and others being asked to drink a glass of wine or rum, both the bottles broke in pieces before they were uncorked.

Mrs. Golding's surprise and fear increasing, she did not know what to do or where to go; wherever she and her maid were, these strange, destructive circumstances followed her, and how to help or free herself from them, was not in her power or any other person's present: her mind was one confused chaos, lost to herself and every thing about her, drove from her own home, and afraid there would be none other to receive her, she at last left Mr. Gresham's, and went to Mr. Mayling's, a gentleman at the next door, here she staid about three quarters of an hour, during which time nothing happened. Her maid staid at Mr. Gresham's, to help put up what few things remained unbroken of her mistress's, in a back apartment, when a jar of pickles that stood upon a table, turned upside down, then a jar of raspberry jam broke to pieces.

Mrs. Pain, not choosing her aunt should stay too long at Mr. Mayling's, for fear of being troublesome, persuaded her to go to her house at Rush Common, near Brixton-causeway, where she would endeavour to make her as happy as she could, hoping by this time all was over; as nothing had happened at that gentleman's house while she was there. This was about two o'clock in the afternoon.

Mr. and Mrs. Gresham were at Mr. Pain's house, when Mrs. Pain, Mrs. Golding, and her maid went there. It being about dinner time they all dined together; in the interim Mrs. Golding's servant was sent to her house to see how things remained. When she returned, she told them nothing had happened since they left it. Sometime after Mr. and Miss Gresham went home, every thing remaining quiet at Mr. Pain's: but about eight o'clock in the evening a fresh scene began; the first thing that happened was, a whole row of pewter dishes except one, fell from off a shelf to the middle of the floor, rolled about a little while, then settled, and as soon as they were quiet, turned upside down; they were then put on the dresser, and went through the same a second time: next fell a whole row of pewter plates from off the second shelf over the dresser to the ground, and being taken up and put on the dresser one in another, they were thrown down again. Two eggs were upon one of the pewter shelves, one of them flew off, crossed the kitchen, and struck a cat on the head, and then broke in pieces.

Next Mary Martin, Mrs. Pain's servant, went to stir the kitchen fire, she got to the right hand side of it, being a large chimney as is usual in farm houses, a pestle and mortar that stood nearer the left hand end of the chimney shelf, jumped about six feet on the floor. Then went candlesticks and other brasses: scarce any thing remaining in its place. After this the glasses and china were put down on the floor for fear of undergoing the same fate.

A glass tumbler that was put on the floor jumped about two feet and then broke. Another that stood by it jumped about at the same time, but did not break till some hours after, when it jumped again and then broke. A china bowl that stood in the parlour jumped from the floor, to behind a table that stood there. This was most astonishing, as the distance from where it stood was between seven and eight feet, but was not broke. It was put back by Richard Fowler, to its place, where it remained some time, and then flew to pieces.

The next thing that jumped was a mustard-pot, that jumped out of a closet and was broke. A single cup that stood upon the table (almost the only thing remaining) jumped up, flew across the kitchen, ringing like a bell, and then was dashed to pieces against the dresser. A tumbler with run and water in it, that stood upon a wiater upon a table in the parlour, jumped about ten feet and was broke. The table then fell down, and along with it a selver tankard belonging to Mrs. Golding, the waiter in which had stood the tumbler, and a candlestick. A case bottle then flew to pieces.

The next circumstance was, a ham, that hung on one side of the kitchen chimney, raised itself from the hook and fell down to the ground. Some time after, another ham, that hung on the other side of the chimney, likewise underwent the same fate. Then a flitch of bacon, which hung up in the same chimney, fell down.

All the family were eye-witnesses to these circumstances as well as other persons, some of whom were so alarmed and shocked, that they could not bear to stay.

At the times of the action, Mrs. Golding's servant was walking backwards and forwards, either in the kitchen or parlour, or wherever some of the family happened to be. Nor could they get her to sit down five minutes together, except at one time for about half an hour towards the morning, when the family were at prayers in the parlour; then all was quiet; but, in the midst of the greatest confusion, she was as much composed as at any other time, and with uncommon coolness of temper advised her mistress not to be alarmed or uneasy, as she said these things could not be helped.

"This advice," it is observed in the narrative, surprised and startled her mistress, almost as much as the circumstances that occasioned it. "For how can we suppose," says the narrator, "that a girl of about twenty years old, (an age when female timidity is too often assisted by superstition,) could remain in the midst of such calamitous circumstances, (except they proceeded from causes best known to herself,) and not be struck with the same terror as every other person was who was present. These reflections led Mr. Pain, and at the end of the transactions, likewise Mrs. Golding, to think that she was not altogether so unconcerned as she appeared to be."

About ten o'clock at night, they sent over the way to Richard Fowler, to desire he would come and stay with them. He came and continued till one in the morning, when he was so terrified, that he could remain no longer.

As Mrs. Golding could not be persuaded to go to bed, Mrs. Pain, at one o'clock, made an excuse to go up stairs to her youngest child, under pretence of getting it to sleep; but she really acknowledged it was through fear, as she declared she could not sit up to see such strange things going on, as every thing one after another was broken, till there was not above two or three cups and saucers remaining out of a considerable quantity of china, &c. which was destroyed to the amount of some pounds.

About five o'clock on Tuesday morning, the 7th, Mrs. Golding went up to her niece, and desired her to get up, as the noises and destructions were so great she could continue in the house no longer. Mrs. Golding and her maid went over the way to Richard Fowler's: when Mrs. Golding's maid had seen her safe to Richard Fowler's, she came back to Mrs. Pain, to help her to dress the children in the barn, where she had carried them for fear of the house falling. At this time all was quiet: they then went to Fowler's, and then began the same scene as had happened at the other places. All was quiet here as well as elsewhere, till the maid returned.

When they got to Mr. Fowler's, he began to light a fire in his back room. When done, he put the candle and candlestick upon a table in the fore room. This apartment Mrs. Golding and her maid had passed through. Another candlestick with a tin lamp in it that stood by it, were both dashed together, and fell to the ground. At last the basket of coals tumbled over, and the coals rolling about the room, the maid desired Richard Fowler not to let her mistress remain there, as she said, wherever she was, the same things would follow. In consquence of this advice, and fearing greater losses to himself, he desired Mrs. Golding would quit his house; but first begged her to consider within herself, for her own and the public sake, whether or not she had not been guilty of some atrocious crime, for which Providence was determined to pursue her on this side [of] the grave. Mrs. Golding told him she would not stay in his house, or any other person's, as her conscience was quite clear, and she could as well wait the will of Providence in her own house as in any other place whatever; upon which she and her maid went home, and Mrs. Pain went with them.

After they had got to Mrs. Golding's, a pail of water, that stood on the floor, boiled like a pot; a box of candles fell from a shelf in the kitchen to the floor, and they rolled out, but none were broken, and the table in the parlour fell over.

Mr. Pain then desired Mrs. Golding to send her maid for his wife to come to them, and when she was gone all was quiet; upon her return she was immediately discharged, and no disturbances happened afterwards; this was between six and seven o'clock on Tuesday morning. At Mrs. Golding's were broken the quantity of three pails full of glass, china, &c. Mrs. Pain's filled two pails.

The accounts here related are in the words of the "narrative," which bears the attestation of the witnesses before mentioned. The affair is still remembered by many persons: it is usually denominated the "Stockwell Ghost," and deemed inexplicable. It must be recollected, however, that the mysterious movements were never made but when Ann Robinson, Mrs. Golding's maid-servant, was present, and that they wholly ceased when she was dismissed. Though these two circumstances tend to prove that the girl was the cause of the disturbances, scarcely any one who lived at that time listened patiently to the presumption, or without attributing the whole to witchcraft. One lady, whom the editor of the Every-Day Book conversed with several times on the subject, firmly believed in the witchcraft, because she had been eye-witness to the animation of the inanimate crockery and furniture, which she said could not have been effected by human means—it was impossible. He derived, however, a solution of these "impossibilities" from the late Mr. J. B———, at his residence in Southampton-street, Camberwell, towards the close of the year 1817. Mr. B——— said, all London was in an uproar about the "Stockwell Ghost" for a long time, and it would have made more noise that the "Cock-lane Ghost," if it had lasted longer; but attention to it gradually died away, and most people believed it was supernatural. Mr. B———, in continuation, observed, that some years after it happened, he became acquainted with this very Ann Robinson, without knowing for a long time that she had been the servant-maid to Mrs. Golding. He learned it by accident, and told her what he had heard. She admitted it was true, and in due season, he says, he got all the story out. She had fixed long horse hairs to some of the crockery, and put wires under others; on pulling these, the "movables" of course fell. Mrs. Golding was terribly frightened, and so were all who saw any thing tumble. Ann Robinson herself, dexterously threw many of the things down, which the persons present, when they turned round and saw them in motion or broken, attributed to unseen agency. These spectators were all too much alarmed by their own dread of infernal power to examine any thing. They kept at an awful distance, and sometimes would not look at the utensils, lest they might face fresh horrors; of these tempting opportunities she availed herself. She put the eggs in motion, and after one only fell down, threw the other at the cat. Their terrors at the time, and their subsequent conversations magnified many of the circumstances beyond the facts. She took advantage of absences to loosen the hams and bacon, and attach them by the skins; in short, she effected all the mischief. She caused the water in the pail to appear as if it boiled by slipping in a paper of chemical powders as she passed, and afterwards it bubbled. "Indeed," said Mr. B———, "there was a love story connected with the case, and when I have time, I will write out the whole, as I got it by degrees from the woman herself. When she saw the effect of her first feats, she was tempted to exercise the dexterity beyond her original purpose for mere amusement. She was astonished at the astonishment she caused, and so went on from one thing to another; and being quick in her motions and shrewd, she puzzled all the simple old people, and nearly frightened them to death." Mr. B——— chuckled mightily over his recollections; he was fond of a practical joke, and enjoyed the tricks of Ann Robinson with all his heart. By his acuteness, curiosity, and love of drollery, he drew from her the entire confession; and "as the matter was all over years ago, and no more harm could be done," said Mr. B., "I never talked about it much, for her sake; but of this I can assure you, that the only magic in the thing was, her dexterity and the people's simplicity." Mr. B. promised to put down the whole on paper; but he was ailing and infirm, and accident prevented the writer from caring much for a "full, true, and particular account," which he could have had at any time, till Mr. Brayfield's death rendered it unattainable.


Mr. Arthur Aikin, in his "Calendar of Nature," presents us with a variety of acceptable information concerning the operations of nature throughout the year. "The plants at this season," he says, "are provided by nature with a sort of winter-quarters, which secure them from the effects of cold. Those called herbaceous, which die down to the root every autumn, are now safely concealed under-ground, preparing their new shoots to burst forth when the earth is softened in spring. Shrubs and trees, which are exposed to the open air, have all their soft and tender parts closely wrapt up in buds, which by their firmness resist all the power of frost; the larger kinds of buds, and those which are almost ready to expand, are further guarded by a covering of resin or gum, such as the horse-chestnut, the sycamore, and the lime. Their external covering, however, and the closeness of their internal texture, are of themselves by no means adequate to resist the intense cold of a winter's night: a bud detached from its stem, enclosed in glass, and thus protected from all access of external air, if suspended from a tree during a sharp frost, will be entirley penetrated, and its parts deranged by the cold, while the buds on the same tree will not have sustained the slightest injury; we just therefore attribute to the living principle in vegetables, as well as animals, the power of resisting cold to a very considerable degree: in animals, we know, this power is generated from the decomposition of air by means of the lungs, and disengagement of heat; how vegetables acquire this property remains for future observations to discover. If one of these buds be carefully opened, it is found to consist of young leaves rolled together, within which are even all the blossoms in miniature that are afterwards to adorn the spring."

During the mild weather of winter, slugs are in constant motion preying on plants and green wheat. Their coverings of slime prevent the escape of animal heat. and hence they are enabled to ravage when their bretheren of the shell, who are more sensible of cold, lie dormant. Earth-worms likewise appear about this time; but let the man of nice order, with a little garden, discriminate between the destroyer, and the innocent and useful inhabitant. One summer evening, the worms from beneath a small grass plat, lay half out of their holes, or were dragging "their slow length" upon the surface. They were all carefully taken up, and preserved as a breakfast for the ducks. In the following year, the grass-plat, which had flourished annually with its worms, vegetated unwillingly. They were the under-gardeners that loosened the sub-soil, and let the warm air through their entrances to nourish the roots of the herbage.

"Their calm desires that asked but little room,"

were unheeded, and their usefulness was unknown, until their absence was felt.

Plough Monday

The first Monday after Twefth-day is called Plough Monday, and appears to have received that name because it was the first day after Christmas that husbandmen resumed the plough. In some parts of the country, and especially in the north, they draw the plough in procession to the doors of the villagers and townspeople. Long ropes are attached to it, and thirty or forty men, stripped to their clean white shirts, but protected from the weather by waistcoats beneath, drag it along. Their arms and shoulders are decorated with gay-coloured ribbons, tied in large knots and bows, and their hats are smartened in the same way. They are usually accompanied by an old woman, or a boy dressed up to represent one; she is gaily bedizened, and called Bessy. Sometimes the sport is assisted by a humorous countryman to represent a fool. He is covered with ribbons, and attired in skins, with a depending tail, and carries a box to collect money from the spectators. They are attended by music, and Morris-dancers when they can be got; but there is always a sportive dance with a few lasses in all their finery, and a superabundance of ribbons. When this merriment is well managed, it is very pleasing. The money collected is spent at night in conviviality. At must not be supposed, however, that in these times, the twelve days of Christmas are devoted to pastime, although the custom remains. Formerly, indeed, little was done in the field at this season, and according to "Tusser Redivivus," during the Christmas holidays, gentlemen feasted the farmers, and every farmer feasted his servants and taskmen. Then Plough Monday reminded them of their business, and on the morning of that day, the men and maids strove who should show their readiness to commence the labours of the year, by rising the earliest. If the ploughman could get his whip, his plough-staff, hatchet, or any field implement, by the fireside, before the maid could get her kettle on, she lost her Shrove-tide cock to the men. Thus did our forefather strive to allure youth to their duty, and provided them innocent mirth as well as labour. On Plough Monday night the farmer gave them a good supper and strong ale. In some places, where the ploughman went to work on Plough Monday, if, on his return at night, he came with his whip to the kitchen-hatch, and cried "Cock in pot," before the maid could cry "Cock on the dunghill," he gained a cock for Shrove Tuesday.

Blomefield's History of Norfolk tends to clear the origin of the annual processions on Plough Monday. Anciently, a light called the Plough-light, was maintained by old and young persons who were husbandmen, before images in some churches, and on Plough Monday they had a feast, and went about with a plough and dancers to get money to support the Plough-light. The Reformation put out these lights; but the practice of going about with the plough begging for money remains, and the "money for light" increases the income of the village alehouse. Let the sons of toil make glad their hearts with "Barley-wine;" let them also remember to "be merry and wise." Their old acquaintance, "Sir John Barleycorn," has had heavy complaints agianst him. There is "The Arraigning and Indicting of SIR JOHN BARLEYCORN, knt. printed for Timothy Tosspot." This whimsical little tract describes him as of "noble blood, well beloved in England, a great support to the crown, and a maintainer of both rich and poor." It formally places him upon his trial, at the sign of the Three Loggerheads, before "Oliver and Old Nick his holy father," as judges. The witnesses for the prosecution were cited under the hands and seals of the said judges, sitting "at the sign of the Three merry Companions in Bedlam; that is to say, Poor Robin, Merry Tom, and Jack Lackwit." At the trial, the prisoner, sir John Barleycorn, pleaded not guilty.

Lawyer Noisy.— May it please your lordship, and gentlemen of the jury, I am counsel for the king against the prisoner at the bar, who stands indicted of many heinous and wicked crimes, in that the said prisoner, with malice propense and several wicked ways, has conspiered and brought about the death of several of his majesty's loving sobjects, to the great loss of several poor families, who by this means have been brought to ruin and beggary, which, before the wicked designs and contrivances of the prisoner, lived in a flourishing and reputable way, but now are reduced to low circumstances and great misery, to the great loss of their own families and the nation in general. We shall call our evidence; and if we make the facts appear, I do not doubt but you will find him guilty, and your lordships will award such punishment as the nature of his crimes deserve.

Vulcan, the Blacksmith.— My lords, sir John has been a great enemy to me, and many of my friends. Many a time, when I have been busy at my work, not thinking any harm to any man, having a fire-spark in my throat, I, going over to the sign of the Cup and Can for one pennyworth of ale, there I found sir John, and thinking no hurt to any man, civilly sat me down to spend my twopence; but in the end, sir John began to pick a quarrel with me. Then I started up, thinking to go away; but sir John had got me by the top of the head, that I had no power to help myself, and so by his strength and power he threw me down, broke my head, my face, and almost all my bones, that I was not able to work for three days; nay, more than this, he picked my purse, and left me never a penny, so that I had not wherewithal to support my family, and my head ached to such a degree, that I was not able to work for three or four days; and this set my wife a scolding, so that I not only lost the good opinion my neighbours had of me, but likewise raised such a storm in my family, that I was forced to call in the parson of the parish to quiet the raging of my wife's temper.

Will, the Weaver.— I am but a poor man, and have a wife and a charge of children: yet this knowing sir John will never let me alone; he is always enticing me from my work, and will not be quiet till he hath got me to the alehouse; and then he quarrels with me, and abuses me most basely; and sometimes he binds me hand and foot, and throws me in the ditch, and there stays with me all night, and next morning leaves me but one penny in my pocket. About a week ago, we had not been together above an hour, before he began to give me cross words: at our first meeting, he seemed to have a pleasant countenance, and often smiled in my face, and would make me sing a merry catch or two; but in a little time, he grew very churlish, and kicked up my heels, set my head where my heels should be, and put my shoulder out, so that I have not been able to use my shuttle ever since, which has been a great detriment to my family, and great misery to myself.

Stitch, the Tailor, deposed to the same effect.

Mr. Wheatly.— The inconveniencies I have received from the prisoner are without number, and the trouble he occasions in the neighbourhood is not to be expressed. I am sure I have been oftentimes very highly esteemed both with lords, knights, and squires, and none could please them so well as James Wheatly, the baker; but now the case is altered; sir John Barleycorn is the man that is highly esteemed in every place. I am now but poor James Wheatly, and he is sir John Barleycorn at every word; and that word hath undone many an honest man in England; for I can prove it to be true, that he has caused many an honest man to waste and consume all that he hath.

The prisoner, sir John Barleycorn, being called on for his defence, urged, that to his accusers he was a friend, until they abused him; and said, if any one is to be blamed, it is my brother Malt. My brother is now in court, and if your lordships please, may be examined to all those facts which are now laid to my charge.

Court.— Call Mr. Malt.

Malt appears.

Court.— Mr. Malt, you have (as you have been in court) heard the indictment that is laid against your brother, sir John Barleycorn, who says, if any one ought to be accused, it should be you; but as sir John and you are so nearly related to each other, and have lived so long together, the court is of opinion he cannot be acquitted, unless you can likewise prove yourself innocent of the crimes which are laid to his charge.

Malt.— My lords, I thank you for the liberty you now indulge me with, and think it a great happiness, since I am so strongly accused, that I have such learned judges to determine these complaints. As for my part, I will put the matter to the bench. First, I pray you consider with yourselves, all tradesmen would live; and although Master Malt does make sometimes a cup of good liquor, and many men come to taste it, yet the fault is neither in me nor my brother John, but in such as those who make this complaint against us, as I shall make it appear to you all.

In the first place, which of you all can say but Master Malt can make a cup of good liquor, with the help of a good brewer; and when it is made, it will be sold. I pray which of you all can live without it? But when such as these, who complain of us, find it to be good, then they have such a greedy mind, that they think they never have enough, and this overcharge brings on the inconveniences complained of, makes them quarrelsome with one another, and abusive to their very friends, so that we are forced to lay them down to sleep. From hence it ap pears it is from their own greedy desires all these troubles arise, and not from wicked designs of our own.

Court.— Truly, we cannot see that you are in the fault. Sir John Barleycorn, we will show you so much favour, that if you can bring any person of reputation to speak to your character, the court is disposed to acquit you. Bring in your evidence, and let us hear what they can say in your behalf.

Thomas, the Ploughman.— May I be allowed to speak my thoughts freely, since I shall offer nothing but the truth.[?]

Court.— Yes, thou mayest be bold to speak the truth, and no more, for that is the cause we sit here for; therefore speak boldly, that we may understand thee.

Ploughman.— Gentlemen, sir John is of an ancient house, and is come of a noble race; there is neither lord, knight, nor squire, but they love his company, and he theirs; as long as they don't abuse him, he will abuse no man, but doth a great deal of good. In the first place, few ploughmen can live without him; for if it were not for him, we should not pay our landlords their rent; and then what would such men as you do for money and clothes? Nay, your gay ladies would care but little for you, if you had not your rents coming in to maintain them; and we could never pay, but that sir John Barleycorn feeds us with money; and yet would you seek to take away his life! For shame, let your malice cease, and pardon his life, or else we are all undone.

Bunch, the Brewer.— Gentlemen, I beseech you hear me. My name is Bunch, a brewer; and I believe few of you can live without a cup of good liquor, no more than I can without the help of sir John Barleycorn. As for my own part, I maintain a great charge, and keep a great many men at work; I pay taxes forty pounds a year to his majesty, God bless him, and all this is maintained by the help of sir John; then how can any man for shame seek to take away his life.

Mistress Hostess.— To give evidence in behalf of sir John Barleycorn, gives me pleasure, since I have an opportunity of doing justice to so honourable a person. Through him the administration receives large supplies; he likewise greatly supports the labourer, and enlivens the conversation. What pleasure could there be at a sheep-clipping without his company, or what joy at a feast without his assistance? I know him to be an honest man, and he never abused any man, if they abused not him. If you put him to death, all England is undone, for there is not another in the land can do as he can do, and hath done; for he can make a cripple go, the coward fight, and a soldier neither feel hunger nor cold. I beseech you, gentlemen, let him live, or else we are all undone; the nation likewise will be distressed, the labourer impoverished, and the husbandman ruined.

Court.— Gentlemen of the jury, you have now heard what has been offered against sir John Barleycorn, and the evidence that has been produced in his defence. If you are of opinion he is guilty of those wicked crimes laid to his charge, and has with malice propense conspired with brought about the death of several of his majesty's loving subjects, you are then to find him guilty; but if, on the contrary, you are of the opinion that he had no real intention of wickedness, and was not the immediate, but only the accidental, cause of these evils laid to his charge, then, according to the statute law of this kingdom, you ought to acquit him.

Verdict, NOT GUILTY.

From this facetious little narrative may be learned the folly of excess, and the injustice of charging a cheering beverage, with the evil consequences of a man taking a cup more of it that will do him good.



January 8.

St. Lucian—Holiday at the Exchequer.

St. Appollinaris. St. Severinus. St. Pega. St. Vulsin. St. Gudula. St. Nathalan.

St. Lucian

The St. Lucian of the Romish church on this day was from Rome, and preached in Gaul, where he suffered death about 290, according to Butler, who affirms that he is the St. Lucian in the English Protestant calendar. There is reason to suppose, however, that the St. Lucian of the church of England was the saint of that name mentioned yesterday.

St. Gudula.

Is the patroness of Brussels, and is said to have died about 712. She suffered the misfortune of having her candle blown out, and possessed the miraculous power of praying it a-light again, at least, so says Butler; "whence," he affirms, "she is usually represented in pictures with a lantern." He particularizes no other miracle she performed. Surius however relates, that as she was praying in a church without shoes, the priest compassionately put his gloves under her feet; but she threw them away, and they miraculously hung in the air for the space of an hour—whether in compliment to the saint or the priest does not appear.


1821. A newspaper of January 8, mentions an extraordinary feat by Mr. Huddy, the postmaster of Lismore, in the 97th year of his age. He travelled, for a wager, from that town to Fermoy in a Dungarvon oyster-tub, drawn by a pig, a badger, two cats, a goose, and a hedgehog; with a large red nightcap on his head, a pig-driver's whip in one hand, and in the other a common cow's-horn, which he blew to encourage his team, and give notice of this new mode of posting.

Let us turn away for a moment from the credulity and eccentricity of man's feebleness and folly, to the contemplation of "the firstling of the year" from the bosom of our common mother. The Snow-drop is described in the "Flora Domestica" "as the earliest flower of all our wild flowers, and will even show her head above the snow, as if to prove her rivalry in whiteness;" as if

—Flora's breath, by some transforming power,
Had chang'd an icicle into a flower.

Mrs. Barbauld.

One of its greatest charms is its "coming in a wintry season, when few others visit us: we look upon it as a friend in adversity; sure to come when most needed."

Like pendant flakes of vegetating snow,
The early herald of the infant year,
Ere yet the adventurous crocus dares to blow,
Beneath the orchard-boughs, thy buds appear.

While still the cold north-east ungenial lowers,
And scarce the hazel in the leafless copse,
Or sallows, show their downy powder'd flowers,
The grass is spangled with thy silver drops.

Charlotte Smith.



January 9.

St. Peter of Sebaste. St. Julian and Basilissa. St. Marciana. St. Brithwald. St. Felan. St. Adrian. St. Vaneng.

Of the seven Romish saints of this day scarcely an anecdote is worth relating.


1766. On the 9th of January died Dr. Thomas Birch, a valuable contributor to history and biography. He was born on the 23rd of November, 1705, of Quaker parents. His father was a coffee-mill maker, and designed Thomas for the same trade; but the son "took to reading," and being put to school, obtained successive usherships; removing each time into a better school, that he might improve his studies; and stealing hours from sleep to increase his knowledge. He succeeded in qualifying himself for the church of England, without going to the university; obtained orders from bishop Hoadley in 1731, and several preferments from the lord chancellor Hardwicke and earl Hardwicke; became a member of the Royal Society before he was thirty years of age, and of the Antiquarian Society about the same time; was created a doctor of divinity, and made a trustee of the British Museum; and at his death, left his books and MSS. to the national library there. Enumeration of his many useful labours would occupy several of these pages. His industry was amazing. His correspondence was extensive; his communications to the Royal Society were various and numerous, and his personal application may be inferred from there being among his MSS. no less than twenty-four quarto volumes of Anthony Bacon's papers transcribed by his own hand. He edited Thurloes' State Papers in 7 vols. folio; wrote the Lives of Illustrious Persons of Great Britain, and History of the Royal Society; published miscellaneous pieces of lord Bacon, before unprinted, and produced a large number of other works. The first undertaking wherein he engaged, with other learned men, was the "General Dictionary, Historical and Critical,"—a most useful labour, containing the whole of Bayle's dictionary newly translated, and several thousand additional lives. He was enabled to complete his great undertakings by being a very early riser, and by usually executing the business of the morning before most persons had commenced it.


From "Poetic Vigils," by BERNARD BARTON

The floweret's bloom is faded,
Its glossy leaf grown sere;
The landscape round is shaded
By Winter's frown austere.

The dew, once sparkling lightly
On grass of freshest green,
In heavier drops unsightly
On matted weeds is seen.

No songs of joy, to gladden,
From leafy woods emerge;
But winds, in tones that sadden,
Breathe Nature's mournful dirge.

All sights and sounds appealing,
Through merely outward sense,
To joyful thought and feeling,
Seem now departed hence.

But not with such is banished
The bliss that life can lend;
Nor with such things hath vanished
Its truest, noblest end.

The toys that charm, and leave us,
Are fancy's fleeting elves;
All that should glad, or grieve us,
Exists within ourselves.

Enjoyment's gentle essence
Is virtue's godlike dower;
Its most triumphant presence
Illumes the darkest hour.



January 10.

St. William. St. Agatho, Pope. St. Marcian.

St. William.

This saint, who died in 1207, was archbishop of Bourges, always wore a hair shirt, never ate flesh meat, when he found himself dying caused his body to be laid on ashes in his hair shirt, worked miracles after his death, and had his relics venerated till 1562, when the Hugonots burnt them without their manifesting miracles at that important crisis. A bone of his arm is still at Chaalis , and one of his ribs at Paris; so says Butler, who does not state that either of these remains worked miracles since the French revolution.

1820. The journals of January relate some particulars of a gentleman remarkable for the cultivation of an useful quality to an extraordinary extent. He drew from actual memory, in twenty-two hours, at two sittings in the presence of two well-known gentlemen, a correct plan of the parish of St. James, Westminster, with parts of the parishes of St. Mary-le-bone, St. Ann, and St. Martin; which plan contained every square, street, lane, court, alley, market, church, chapel, and all public buildings, with all stable and other yards, also every public-house in the parish, and the corners of all streets, with every minutiæ, as pumps, posts, trees, houses that project and inject, bow-windows, Carlton-house, St. James's palace, and the interior of the markets, without scale or reference to any plan, book or paper whatever. He did the same with respect to the parish of St. Andrew, Holborn, in the presence of four gentlemen, from eight to twelve, one evening at a tavern; and he also undertook to draw the plan of St. Giles-in-the-fields, St. Paul's, Covent-garden, St. Mary-le-strand, St. Clement's, and three-fourths of Mary-le-bone, or St. George's. The plans before alluded to were drawn in the presence of John Willock, Esq. Golden-square; Mr. Robinson, of Surrey-road; William Montague, Esq. of Guildhall; Mr. Allen, vestry clerk of St. Ann's; John Dawson, Esq. of Burlington-street; N. Walker, Holborn; and two other gentlemen. He can tell the corner of any great and leading thoroughfare-street from Hyde Park-corner, or Oxford-street, to St. Paul's; or from the New-road to Westminster abbey; and the trade or profession carried on at such corner house. He can tell every public shop of business in Piccadilly, which consists of two hundred and forty-one houses, allowing him only twenty-four mistakes; he accomplished this in the presence of four gentlemen, after five o'clock, and proved it before seven in the same evening. A house being named in any public street, he will name the trade of the shop, either on the right or left hand of the same, and whether the door of such house so named is in the centre, or on the right or left. He can take an inventory, from memory only, of a gentleman's house, from the attic to the groundfoor, and afterwards write it out. He did this at lord Nelson's, at Merton, and likewise at the duke of Kent's, in the presence of two noblemen. He is known by the appellation of "Memory-corner Thompson." The plan of his house, called Priory Frognall, Hampstead, he designed, and built it externally and internally, without any working-drawing, but carried it up by the eye only. Yet, though his memory is so accurate in the retention of objects submitted to the eye, he has little power of recollecting what he hears. The dialogue of a comedy heard once, or even twice, would, after an interval of a few days, be entirely new to him.


January 11.

St. Theodosius. St. Hyginus. St Egwin. St. Salvius.

St. Theodosius

This saint visited St. Simeon Stylites on his pillar and had his fortune told. He ate coarse pulse and wild herbs, never tasted bread for thirty years, founded a monastery for an unlimited number of monks, dug one grave large enough to hold the whole community, when he received strangers, and had not food enough, he prayed for its miraculous increase and had it multiplied accordingly, prophesied while he was dying, died in 529, and had his hair shirt begged by a count, who won a victory with it. He was buried according to Butler, who relates these particulars, in the cave wherein the three kings of Cologne were said to have lodged on their way to Bethlehem.


In hard frosts holes must be broken in the ice that forms upon fish ponds, or the fish will die. It is pleasing to watch the finny tenants rising half torpic beneath a new-formed hole for the benefit of the air. Ice holes should be kept open during the frost; one hole to a pond is sufficient.

At Logan or Port Nessock in Wigtownshire, North Britain, a large salt-water pond was formed for Cod in 1800. It is a basin of 30 feet in depth, and 160 feet in circumference, hewn out from the solid rock, and communicating with the sea by one of those fissures which are common to bold and precipitous coasts. Attached to it is a neat Gothic cottage for the accomodation of the fisherman, and the rock is surmounted all round by a substantial stone wall at least 300 feet in circumference. In every state of the wind or tide, winter and summer, when not a single boat dare venture to sea, Colonel M'Dowal can command a supply of the finest fish and study at his leisure the instincts and habits of the "finny nations," with at least all the accuracy of those sage naturalists who rarely [venture] farther than Exeter 'Change. From the inner or back door of the lodge, a winding stair-way conducts to the usual halting place—a large flat stone projecting into the water and commanding a view of every part of the aquatic prison. When the tide is out, this stone is left completely dry, and here a stranger perceives with surprise, a hundred mouths simultaneously opened to greet his arrival.

The moment the fisherman crosses his threshold, the pond is agitated by the action of some hundred fins, and otherwise thrown into a state of anarchy and confusion. Darting from this, that, and the other corner, the whole population move as it were to a common centre, elevate their snouts, lash their tails, and jostle one another with such violence, that on a first view they actually seem to be menacing an attack on the poor fisherman, in place of the creel full of limpets he carries. Many of the fish are so tame, that they will feed greedily from the hand, and bite your fingers into the bargain, if you are foolish enough to allow them; while others again are so shy, that the fisherman discourses of the different tempers, as a thing quite as palpable as the gills they breathe, or the fins they move by. One gigantic cod, which seems to answer to the name of "Tom," and may well be described as the patriarch of the pond, forcibly arrests attention. This unfortunate, who passed his youth in the open sea, was taken prisoner at the age of five, and has since sojourned at Port Nessock, for the long period of twelve years, during all which time he has gradually increased in bulk and weight. He is now wholly blind from age or disease, and he has no chance whatever in the general scramble. The fisherman, however, is very kind to him, and it is affecting as well as curious, to see the huge animal raise himself in the water; and then resting his head on the flat stone, allow it to be gently patted or stroked, gaping all the while to implore that food which he has no other means of obtaining. In this pond, cod appears to be the prevailing species; there are also blochin or glassin, haddocks, flounders, and various other kinds. Salmon, which at spawning time visit the highest rivers, could not of course obey their instincts here, and accordingly there is only one specimen of this favourite fish in the pond at present. As the fisherman remarked, "he is far soupler than any o' the rest," and by virtue of this one quality, chases, bites, and otherwise annoys a whole battalion of gigantic cod, that have only, one would think, to open their mouths and swallow him. To supply them with food is an important part of the fisherman's duty; and with this view he must ply the net, and heave the line, during two or three days of every week. He has also to renew the stock, when the pond appears to be getting thin, from the contributions levied on it by the cook.

A letter from Cairo, in a journal of January 1824, contains a whimsical exemplification of Turkish manners in the provinces, and the absurdity of attempting to honour distant authorities, by the distinctions of civil society. A diploma of honorary member of the Society of Frankfort was presented to the Pacha, at the divan (or council.) The Pacha, who can neither read nor write, thought it was a firman (despatch) from the Porte. He was much surprised and alarmed; but the interpreter explained to him that it was written in the Nemptchee (German) language, contained the thanks of the ulemas (scholars) of a German city named Frankfort, for his kindness to two Nemptchee travelling in Egypt.

But the most difficult part was yet to come; it was to explain to him that he had been appointed a member of their society; and the Turkish language having no word for this purely European idea, the interpreter, after many hesitations and circumlocutions, at last succeeded in explaining, "that as a mark of respect and gratitude, the society had made him one of their partners." At these words the eyes of the Pacha flashed with anger, and with a voice of thunder he roared that he would never again be the partner of any firm; that his partnership with Messrs. Briggs and Co. in the Indian trade, cost him nearly 500,000 hard piasters; that the association for the manufactory of sugar and rum paid him nothing at all; and, in short, that he was completely tired of his connections with Frank merchants, who were indebted to him 23,000,000 of piasters, which he considered as completely lost. In his rage, he even threatened to have the interpreter drowned in the Nile, for having presumed to make offer of a mercantile connection, against his positive orders.

The poor interpreter was confounded, and unable to utter a word in his defence. At this critical moment, however, Messrs. Fernandez, Pambone, and others who have access to the Pacha, interposed; and it was some time before they could reduce his Highness to reason; his passion had thrown him into an hysterical hiccup. When his Highness was a little recovered, Mr. Fernandez endeavoured to explain to him that there was no question about business: that the ulemas of Frankfort were possessed of no stock but books, and had no capital. "So much the worse," replied the Pacha; "then they are sahhaftehi, (booksellers,) who carry on their business without money, like the Franks at Cairo and Alexandria." "On, no they are no sahhaftehi, but ulemas, kiatibs, (authors,) physicians, philossoufs, &c., who are only engaged in science." "Well," said he, "and what am I then to do in their society; I, a Pacha of three horse tails?" "Nothing at all, your Highness, like perhaps most of the members of their society, but by receiving you into their society, these gentlemen intended to show you their respect and gratitude." "That is a strange custom, indeed," cried the Pacha, "to show respect to a person by telling or writing to him in funny letters—you are worthy of being one of us." "But this is the custom," added Divan Effendi (his Secretary.) "Your Happiness knows that the friends (Franks) have many customs different from ours, and often such as are very ridiculous. For instance, if they wish to salute a person, they bare their heads, and scrape with their right foot backwards; instead of sitting down comfortably on a sofa to rest themselves, they sit on little wooden chairs, as if they were about to be shaved: they eat the pillao with spoons, and the meat with pincers; but what seems most laughable is, that they humbly kiss the hands of their women, who, instead of the yashmak, (veil,) carry straw baskets on their heads; and that they mix sugar and milk with their coffee." This last sally set the whole assembly (his Highness excepted) in a roar of laughter. Among those who stood near the fountain in the middle of the hall, several exclaimed with respect to the coffee with sugar and milk, Kiafirler! (Ah, ye infidels!)

In the end the Pacha was pacified, and "Alls well that ends well;" but it had been better, it seems, if, according to the customs of the east, the society of Frankfort had sent the Pacha the unquestionable civility of a present, that he could have applied to some use.


On the 11th of January, 1825, a sketch of this church was taken from a second-floor window in the house No. 115, Fleet-street, which stands on the opposite side of the way to that whereon the opening was made by the late fire; and the subjoined engraving from the sketch is designed to perpetuate the appearance through that opening. Till then, it had been concealed from the view of passengers through Fleet-street by the houses destroyed, and the conflagration has been rightly deemed a favourable opportunity for endeavouring to secure a space of sufficient extent to render the church a public ornament to the city. To at least one person, professionally unskilled, the spire of St. Bride's appears more chaste and effective than the spire of Bow. In 1805, it was 234 feet high, which is thirty-two feet higher than the Monument, but having been struck by lightning in that year, it was lowered to its present standard.

St. Bride's church was built by sir Christopher Wren, and completed in 1680. It has been repeatedly beautified: its last internal decorations were effected in 1824. In it are interred Thomas Flatman the poet, Samuel Richardson, the novelist, and William Bingley, a bookseller, remarkable for his determined and successful resistance to interrogatories by the court of King's Bench—a practice which that resistance abated for ever: his latter years were employed, or rather were supported, by the kindness of the venerable and venerted John Nichols, Esq. F. S. A. whose family tablet of brass is also in this church. As an ecclesiastical edifice, St. Bride's is confessedly one of the most elegant in the metropolis: an unobstructed view of it is indispensable therefore to the national character. Appeals which will enable the committee to purchase the interests of individuals on the requisite site are now in progress, and can scarcely be unheeded by those whom wealth, taste, and liberality dispose to assist in works of public improvement. The engraved sketch does not claim to be more than such a representation as may give a distant reader some grounds for determining whether a vigorous effort to save a build ing of that appearance from enclosure a second time ought not now to be made. The proceedings for that purpose are in this month, and are entitled to a place in this sheet.

St. Bride's Church, London, as it appeared Jan. 11, 1825.

From the opening in Fleet-street made by the Fire of Sunday, November 14, 1824.


This diversion, resorted to at visitings during the twelve days of Christmas, as of ancient custom, continues without abatement during the prolongation of friendly meetings at this season. Persons who are opposed to this recreation from religious scruples, do not seem to distinguish between its use and its abuse. Mr. Archdeacon Butler refers to the "harmless mirth and innocent amusements of society," in his sermon on "Christian Liberty," before the duke of Gloucester, and the university of Cambridge, on his royal highness's installation as chancellor, June 30, 1811. The archdeacon quotes, as a note on that point in his sermon, a remarkable passage from Jeremy Taylor, who says, "that cards, &c. are of themselves lawful, I do not know any reason to doubt. He can never be suspected, in any criminal sense, to tempt the Divine Providence, who by contingent things recreates his labour. As for the evil appendages, they are all separable from these games, and they may be separated by these advices, &c." On the citation, which is here abridged, the archdeacon remarks, "Such are the sentiments of one of the most truly pious and most profoundly learned prelates that ever adorned any age or country; nor do I think that the most rigid of our disciplinarians can produce the authority of a wiser or a better man than bishop Jeremy Taylor." Certainly not; and therefore an objector to this pastime will do well to read the reasoning of the whole passage as it stands at the end of the archdeacon's printed sermon: if he desire further, let him peruse Jeremy Taylor's "advices."

Cards are not here introduced with a view of seducing parents to rear their sons as gamblers and blacklegs, or their daughters to

"a life of scandal, an old age of cards;"

but to impress upon them the importance of "not morosely refusing to participate in" what the archdeacon refers to, as of the "harmless mirth and innocent amusements of society." Persons who are wholly debarred from such amusements in their infancy, frequently abuse a pleasure they have been wholly restrained from, by excessive indulgence in it on the first opportunity. This is human nature: let the string be suddenly withdrawn from the overstrained bow, and the relaxation of the bow is violent.

Look at a juvenile card-party—not at that which the reader sees represented in the engraving, which is somewhat varied from a design by Stella, who grouped boys almost as finely as Fiamingo modelled their forms—but imagine a juvenile party closely seated round a large table, with a Pope Joan board in the middle; each well supplied with mother-o'-pearl fish and counters, in little Chinese ornamented red and gold trays; their faces and the candles lighting up the room; their bright eyes sparkling after the cards, watching the turn-up, or peeping into the pool to see how rich it is; their growing anxiety to the rounds, till the lucky card decides the richest stake; then the shout out of "Rose has got it!" "It's Rose's!" "Here, Rose, here they are—take 'em all; here's a lot!" Emma, and John, and Alfred, and William's hands thrust forth to help her to the prize; Sarah and Fanny, the elders of the party, laughing at their eagerness; the more sage Matilda checking it, and counting how many fish Rose has won; Rose, amazed at her sudden wealth, talks the least; little Samuel, who is too young to play, but has been allowed a place, with some of the "pretty fish" before him, claps his hands and halloos, and throws his playthings to increase Rose's treasure; and baby Ellen sits in "mother's" lap, mute from surprise at the "uproar wild," till a loud crow, and the quick motion of her legs, proclaim her delight at the general joy, which she suddenly suspends in astonishment at the many fingers pointed towards her, with "Look at baby! look at baby!" and gets smothered with kisses, from which "mother" vainly endeavours to protect her. And so they go on, till called by Matilda to a new game, and "mother" bids them to "go and sit down, and be good children, and not make so much noise:" whereupon they disperse to their chairs; two or three of the least help up Samuel, who is least of all, and "mother" desires them to "take care, and mind he does not fall." Matilda then gives him his pretty fish "to keep him quiet;" begins to dress the board for a new game; and once more they are "as merry as grigs."

In contrast to the jocund pleasure of children at a round game, take the picture of "old Sarah Battle," the whist-player. "A clear fire, a clean hearth, and the rigour of the game," was her celebrated wish. "She was none of your lukewarm gamesters, your half-and-half players, who have no objection to take a hand, if you want one to make up a rubber; who affirm that they have no pleasure in winning; that they like to win one game, and lose another; that they can wile away an hour very agreeably at a card-table, but are indifferent whether they play or no; and will desire an ad versary, who has slipt a wrong card, to take it up and play another. Of such it may be said that they do not play at cards, but only play at playing at them. Sarah Battle was none of that breed; she detested them from her heart and soul; and would not, save upon a striking emergency, willingly seat herself at the same table with them. She loved a thorough-paced partner, a determined enemy. She took and gave no concessions; she hated favours; she never made a revoke, nor ever passed it over in her adversary, without exacting the utmost forfeiture. She sat bolt upright, and neither showed you her cards, nor desired to see yours. All people have their blind side—their superstitions; and I have heard her declare, under the rose, that Hearts was her favourite suit. I never in my life (and I knew Sarah Battle many of the best years of it) saw her take out her snuffbox when it was her turn to play, or snuff a candle in the middle of a game, or ring for a servant till it was fairly over. She never introduced, or connived at, miscellaneous conversation during its process: as, she emphatically observed, cards were cards. A grave simplicity was what she chiefly admired in her favourite game. There was nothing silly in it, like the nob in cribbage—nothing superfluous. To confess a truth, she was never greatly taken with cribbage. It was an essentially vulgar game, I have heard her say,—disputing with her uncle, who was very partial to it. She could never heartily bring her mouth to pronounce 'go,' or 'that's a go.' She called it an ungrammatical game. The pegging teased her. I once knew her to forfeit a rubber, because she would not take advantage of the turn-up knave, which would have given it her, but which she must have claimed by the disgraceful tenure of declaring 'two for his heels.' Sarah Battle was a gentlewoman born." These, omitting a few delicate touches, are her features by the hand of Elia. "No inducement," he says, "could ever prevail upon her to play at her favourite game for nothing." And then he adds, "With great deference to the old lady's judgment on these matters, I think I have experienced some moments in my life when playing at cards for nothing has even been agreeable. When I am in sickness, or not in the best spirits, I sometimes call for the cards, and play a game at piquet for love with my cousin Bridget—Bridget Elia[.]" Cousin Bridget and the gentle Elia seem beings of that age wherein lived Pamela, whom, with "old Sarah Battle," we may imagine entering their room, and sitting down with them to a square game. Yet Bridget and Elia live in our own times: she, full of kindness to all, and of soothings to Elia especially;—he, no less kind and consoling to Bridget, in all simplicity holding converse with the world, and, ever and anon, giving us scenes that Metzu and De Foe would admire, and portraits that Denner and Hogarth would rise from their graves to paint.


January 12.

St Arcadius. St. Benedict Biscop, or Bennet. St. Ælred, Tygrius.

St. Benedict Biscop, or Bennet.

Butler says he was in the service of Oswi, king of the Northumbrians; that at twenty-five years old he made a pilgrimage to Rome, returned and carried Alcfrid, the son of Oswi, back to the shrines of the apostles there, became a monk, received the abbacy of Sts. Peter and Paul, Canterbury, resigned it, pilgrimaged again to Rome, brought home books, relics, and religious pictures, founded the monastery of Weremouth, went to France for masons to build a church to it, obtained glaziers from thence to glaze it, pilgrimaged to Rome for more books, relics, and pictures, built another monastery at Jarrow on the Tine, adorned his churches with pictures, instructed his monks in the Gregorian chant and Roman ceremonies, and died on this day in 690. He appears to have had a love for literature and the arts, and, with a knowledge superior to the general attainment of the religious in that early age, to have rendered his knowledge subservient to the Romish church.


1807. The 12th of January in that year is rendered remarkable by a fatal accident at Leyden, in Holland. A vessel loaded with gunpowder entered one of the largest canals in the Rapenburg, a street inhabited chiefly by the most respectable families, and moored to a tree in front of the house of professor Rau, of the university. In Holland, almost every street has a canal in the middle, faced with a brick wall up to the level of the street, and with lime trees planted on both sides, which produce a beautiful effect, and form a delightful shade in hot weather. Vessels of all kinds are frequently moored to these trees, but Leyden being an inland town, the greater part of those which happened to be in the Rapenburg were country vessels. Several yachts, belonging to parties of pleasure from the Hague and other places, were lying close to the newly arrived vessel, and no person was aware of the destructive cargo it contained.

A student of the university, who, at about a quarter past four o'clock in the afternoon, was passing through a street from which there was a view of the Rapenburg, with the canal and vessels related the following particulars to the editor of the Monthly Magazine:—

"At that moment, when every thing was perfectly tranquil, and most of the respectable families were sitting down to dinner in perfect security, at that instant, I saw the vessel torn from its moorings; a stream of fire burst from it in all directions, a thick, black cloud enveloped all the surrounding parts and darkened the heavens, whilst a burst, louder and more dreadful than the loudest thunder, instantly followed, and vibrated through the air to a great distance, burying houses and churches in one common ruin. For some moments horror and consternation deprived every one of his recollection, but an universal exclamation followed, of "O God, what is it?" Hundreds of people might be seen rushing out of their falling houses, and running along the streets not knowing what direction to take; many falling down on their knees in the streets, persuaded that the last day was come; others supposed they had been struck by lightning, and but few seemed to conjecture the real cause. In the midst of this awful uncertainty, the cry of "O God, what is it?" again sounded mournfully through the air, but it seemed as if none could answer the dreadful question. One conjecture followed another, but at last, when the black thick cloud which had enveloped the whole city had cleared away a little, the awful truth was revealed, and soon all the inhabitants of the city were seen rushing to the ruins to assist the sufferers. There were five large schools on the Rapenburg, and all at the time full of children. The horror of the parents and relations of these youthful victims is not to be described or even imagined; and though many of them were saved almost miraculously, yet no one dared to hope to see his child drawn alive from under a heap of smoking ruins.

"Flames soon broke out from four different parts of the ruins, and threatened destruction to the remaining part of Leyden. The multitude seemed as it were animated with one common soul in extricating the sufferers, and stopping the progress of the flames. None withdrew from the awful task, and the multitude increased every moment by people coming from the surrounding country, the explosion having been heard at the distance of fifty miles. Night set in, the darkness of which, added to the horrors of falling houses, the smothered smoke, the raging of the flames, and the roaring of the winds on a tempestuous winter night, produced a scene neither to be described nor imagined; while the heart-rending cries of the sufferers, or the lamentations of those whose friends or children were under the ruins, broke upon the ear at intervals. Many were so entirely overcome with fear and astonishment, that they stared about them without taking notice of any thing, while others seemed full of activity, but incapable of directing their efforts to any particular object."

In the middle of the night, Louis Bonaparte, then king of Holland, arrived from the palace of Loo, having set out as soon as the express reached him with the dreadful tidings. Louis was much beloved by his subjects, and his name is still mentioned by them with great respect. On this occasion his presence was very useful. He encouraged the active and comforted the sufferers, and did not leave the place till he had established good order, and promised every assistance in restoring both public and private losses. He immediately gave a large sum of money to the city, and granted it many valuable privileges, besides exemption from imposts and taxes for a number of years.

Some degree of order having been restored, the inhabitants were divided into classes, not according to their rank, but the way in which they were employed about the ruins. These classes were distinguished by bands of different colours tied round their arms. The widely extended ruins now assumed the appearance of hills and valleys, covered with multitudes of workmen, producing to the eye an ever-varying scene of different occupations. The keep of the vessel in which the catastrophe commenced, was found buried deep in the earth at a considerable distance, together with the remains of a yacht from the Hague with a party of pleasure, which lay close to it. The anchor of the powder vessel was found in a field without the city, and a very heavy piece of lead at the foot of the mast was thrown into a street at a great distance.

One of the most affecting incidents was the fate of the pupils of the different schools on the Rapenburg. At the destructive moment, the wife of the principal of the largest of them was standing at the door with her child in her arms; she was instantly covered with the falling beams and bricks, the child was blown to atoms, and she was thrown under a tree at some distance. Part of the floor of the school-room sunk into the cellar, and twelve children were killed instantly; the rest, miserably wounded, shrieked for help, and one was heard to call, "Help me, help me, I will give my watch to my deliverer." Fathers and mothers rushed from all parts of the city to seek their children, but after digging five hours they found their labour fruitless; and some were even obliged to leave the spot in dreadful suspense, to attend to other near relations dug out in other quarters. They at last succeeded, by incredible efforts, in bringing up some of the children, but in such a state that many of their parents could not recognise them, and not a few were committed to the grave without its being known who they were. Many of these children, both among the dead and those who recovered, bled profusely, while no wound could be discovered in any part of their bodies. Others were preserved in a wonderful manner, and without the least hurt. Forty children were killed. In some houses large companies were assembled, and in one, a newly married couple, from a distance, had met a numerous party of their friends. One person who was writing in a small room, was driven through a window above the door, into the staircase, and fell to the bottom without receiving much hurt. Many were preserved by the falling of the beams or rafters in a particular direction, which protected them, and they remained for many hours, some for a whole day and night. A remarkable fact of this kind happened, when the city of Delft was destroyed by an explosion of gunpowder in 1654; a child, a year old, was found two days afterwards sucking an apple, and sitting under a beam, with just space left for its body. Two others at a little distance were in their cradles quite safe. At that time almost the whole of Delft was destroyed.

Leyden is as large a city, but not so populous, as Rotterdam, the second city in Holland. Upwards of two hundred houses were overthrown on this occasion, besides churches and public buildings; the Stadt, or town-house, was among the latter.

One hundred and fifty-one dead bodies were taken from the ruins, besides many that died after. Upwards of two thousand were wounded more or less dangerously. It is remarkable that none of the students of the university were either killed or wounded, though they all lodge in different parts of the city, or wherever they please. Contributions were immediately began, and large sums raised. The king of Holland gave 30,000 gilders, and the queen 10,000; a very large sum was collected in London.

Leyden suffered dreadfully by siege in 1573, and by the plague in 1624 and 1635, in which year 15,000 of the inhabitants were carried off within six months. In 1415 a convent was burnt, and most of the nuns perished in the flames. An explosion of gunpowder, in 1481, destroyed the council-chamber when full of people, and killed most of the magistrates.

The misfortunes of this city have become proverbial, and its very name has given rise to a pun. "Leyden" is "Lijden;" Leyden, the name of the city, and Lijden, (to suffer,) have the same pronunciation in the Dutch language.

The chirp of the crickets from the kitchen chimney breaks the silence of still evenings in the winter. They come from the crevices, when the house is quiet, to the warm hearth, and utter their shrill monotonous notes, to the discomfiture of the nervous, and the pleasure of those who have sound minds in sound bodies. This insect and the grasshopper are agreeably coupled in a pleasing sonnet. The "summoning brass" it speaks of, our country readers well know, as an allusion to the sounds usually produced from some kitchen utensil of metal to assist in swarming the bees: —

To the Grasshopper and the Cricket.

Green little vaulter in the sunny grass,
     Catching your heart up at the feel of June,
     Sole voice that's heard amidst the lazy noon,
When ev'n the bees lag at the summoning brass;
And you, warm little housekeeper, who class
     With those who think the candles come too soon,
     Loving the fire, and with your tricksome tune
Nick the glad silent moments as they pass;
Oh, sweet and tiny cousins, that belong,
     One to the fields, the other to the hearth,
Both have your sunshine; both, though small, are strong
     At your clear hearts; and both were sent on earth
To sing in thoughtful ears this natural song,—
     In doors and out, summer and winter, Mirth.             L. Hunt.



January 13.

St. Veronica of Milan. St. Kentigern.

St. Hilary.

The festival of St. Hilary is not, at this time, observed by the Romish church until to-morrow, but it stands in old calendars, and in Randle Holmes's Heraldry, on this day, whereon it is also placed in the English calendar. Butler says, he was born at Poictiers, became bishop of that city, was a commentator on Scrip ture, an orator, a poet, wrote against the Arians, was banished for his orthodoxy, but returned to his see, worked miracles, and died on the 13th of January, 368. Ribadeneira says, that in a certain island, uninhabitable by reason of venemous serpents, they fled from his holiness; that he put up a stake as a boundary, commanding them not to pass it, and they obeyed; that he raised a dead child to life, prayed his daughter to death, and did other astonishing things; especially after his decease, when two merchants, at their own cost and by way of venture, offered an image at his shrine, but as one begrudged the cost of his share, St. Hilary caused the image to divide from top to bottom, while being offered, keeping the one half, and rejecting the niggard's moiety. The Golden Legend says that St. Hilary also obtained his wife's death by his prayers; and that pope Leo, who was an Arian, said to him, "Thou art Hilary the cock, and not the son of a hen;" whereat Hilary said, "I am no cock, but a bishop in France;" then said the pope, "Thou art Hilary Gallus (signifying a cock) and I am Leo, judge of the papal see;" whereupon Hilary replied, "If thou be Leo, thou art not (a lion) of the tribe of Juda." After this railing the pope died, and Hilary was comforted.

St. Veronica.

She was a nun, with a desire to live always on bread and water, died in 1497, and was canonized, after her claim to sanctity was established to the satisfaction of his holiness pope Leo X.

St. Kentigern.

He was bishop of Glasgow, with jurisdiction in Wales, and, according to Butler, "favoured with a wonderful gift of miracles." Bishop Patrick, in his "Devotions of the Romish Church," says, "St. Kentigern had a singular way of kindling fire, which I could never have hit upon." Being in haste to light candles for vigils, and some, who bore a spite to him, having put out all the fire in the monastery, he snatched the green bough of an hazel, blessed it, blew upon it, the bough produced a great flame, and he lighted his candles: "Whence we may conjecture," says Patrick, "that tinder-boxes are of a later invention than St. Kentigern's days."


Term is derived from Terminus, the heathen god of boundaries, landmarks, and limits of time. In the early ages of Christianity the whole year was one continued term for hearing and deciding causes; but after the establishment of the Romish church, the daily dispensation of justice was prohibited by canonical authority, that the festivals might be kept holy.

Advent and Christmas occasioned the winter vacation; Lent and Easter the spring; Pentecost the third; and hay time and harvest, the long vacation between Midsummer and Michaelmas.

Each term is denominated from the festival day immediately preceding its commencement; hence we have the terms of St. Hilary, Easter, the Holy Trinity, and St. Michael.

There are in each term stated days called dies in banco (days in bank,) that is, days of appearance in the court of common bench. They are usually about a week from each other, and have reference to some Romish festival. All original writs are returnable on these days and they are therefore called the return days.

The first return in every term is, properly speaking, the first day of the term. For instance, the octave of St. Hilary, or the eighth day, inclusive, after the saint's feast, falls on the 20th of January, because his feast is on the 13th of January. On the 20th, then, the court sits to take essoigns, or excuses for non-appearance to the writ; "but," says Blackstone, "as our ancestors held it beneath the condition of a freeman to appear or to do any thing at the precise time appointed," the person summoned has three days of grace beyond the day named in the writ, and if he appear on the fourth day inclusive it is sufficient. Therefore at the beginning of each term the court does not sit for despatch of business till the fourth, or the appearance day, which is in Hilary term, for instance, on the 23rd of January. In Trinity term it does not sit till the fifth day; because the fourth falls on the great Roman catholic festival of Corpus Christi. The first appearance day therefore in each term is called the first day of the term; and the court sits till the quarto die post, or appearance day of the last return, or end of the term.

In each term there is one day whereon the courts do not transact business; namely, on Candlemas day, in Hilary term; on Ascension day, in Easter term; on Midsummer day, in Trinity term; and on All Saints' day, in Michaelmas term. These are termed Grand days in the inns of court; and Gaudy days at the two universities; they are observed as Collar days at the king's court of St. James's, for on these days, knights wear the collars of their respective orders.

An old January journal contains a remarkable anecdote relative to the decease of a M. Foscue, one of the farmers-general of the province of Languedoc[.] He had amassed considerable wealth by means which rendered him an object of universal detestation. One day he was ordered by the government to raise a considerable sum: as an excuse for not complying with the demand, he pleaded extreme poverty; and resolved on hiding his treasure in such a manner as to escape detection. He dug a kind of a cave in his wine-cellar, which he made so large and deep, that he used to go down to it with a ladder; at the entrance of it was a door with a spring lock on it, which on shutting would fasten of itself. He was suddenly missed, and diligent search made after him; ponds were drawn, and every suggestion adopted that could reasonably lead to his discovery, dead or alive. In a short time after, his house was sold; and the purchaser beginning to make some alterations, the workmen discovered a door in the wine-cellar with a key in the lock. On going down they found Foscue lying dead on the ground, with a candlestick near him, but no candle in it. On searching farther, they found the vast wealth that he had amassed. It is supposed, that, when he had entered his cave, the door had by some accident shut after him; and thus being out of the call of any person, he perished for want of food, in the midst of his treasure.


The hollow winds begin to blow;
The clouds look black, the glass is low;
The soot falls down, the spaniels sleep;
And spiders from their cobwebs peep.
Last night the sun went pale to bed;
The moon in halos hid her head.
The boding shepherd heaves a sigh,
For, see, a rainbow spans the sky.
The walls are damp, the ditches smell,
Clos'd is the pink-ey'd pimpernel.
Hark! how the chairs and tables crack,
Old Betty's joints are on the rack:
Her corns with shooting pains torment her,
And to her bed untimely send her.
Loud quack the ducks, the sea fowl cry,
The distant hills are looking nigh.
How restless are the snorting swine!
The busy flies disturb the kine.
Low o'er the grass the swallow wings
The cricket too, how sharp he sings!
Puss on the hearth, with velvet paws,
Sits wiping o'er her whisker'd jaws.
The smoke from chimneys right ascends
Then spreading, back to earth it bends.
The wind unsteady veers around,
Or settling in the South is found.
Through the clear stream the fishes rise,
And nimbly catch the incautious flies.
The glow-worms num'rous, clear and bright,
Illum'd the dewy hill last night.
At dusk the squalid toad was seen,
Like quadruped, stalk o'er the green.
The whirling wind the dust obeys,
And in the rapid eddy plays.
The frog has changed his yellow vest,
And in a russet coat is drest.
The sky is green, the air is still,
The mellow blackbird's voice is shrill.
The dog, so alter'd is his taste,
Quits mutton-bones, on grass to feast.
Behold the rooks, how odd their flight
They imitate the gliding kite,
And seem precipitate to fall,
As if they felt the piercing ball.
The tender colts on back do lie,
Nor heed the traveller passing by.
In fiery red the sun doth rise,
Then wades through clouds to mount the skies.
'Twill surely rain, we see't with sorrow,
No working in the fields to-morrow.



January 14.


St. Hilary. Sts. Felix. Sts. Isaias and Sabbas. St. Barbasceminus, &c.

St. Felix of Nola, an excorcist, and afterwards a priest, was, according to Butler and Ribadeneira, a great miraculist. He lived under Decius, in 250; being fettered and dungeoned in a cell, covered with potsherds and broken glass, a resplendent angel, seen by the saint alone, because to him only was he sent, freed him of his chains and guided him to a mountain, where bishop Maximus, aged and frozen, lay for dead, whom Felix recovered by praying; for, straightway, he saw a bramble bear a bunch of grapes, with the juice whereof he recovered the bishop, and taking him on his back carried him home to his diocese. Being pursued by pagans, he fled to some ruins and crept through a hole in the wall, which spiders closed with their webs before the pagans got up to it, and there lay for six months miraculously supported. According to the Legend, his body, for ages after his death, distilled a liquor that cured diseases.


In January, 1784, died suddenly in Macclesfield-street, Soho, aged 79, Sam. Crisp, esq., a relation of the celebrated sir Nicholas Crisp. There was a remarkable singularity in the character of this gentleman. He was a bachelor, had been formerly a broker in 'Change-alley, and many years since had retired from business, with an easy competency. His daily amusement, for fourteen years before, was going from London to Greenwich, and immediately returning from thence, in the stage; for which he paid regularly £27 a year. He was a good-humoured, obliging, and facetious companion, always paying a particular attention, and a profusion of compliments, to the ladies, especially to those who were agreeable. He was perpetually projecting some little schemes for the benefit of the public, or, to use his own favourite maxim, pro bono publico; he was the institutor of the Lactarium in St. George's Fields, and selected the Latin mottoes for the facetious Mrs. Henniver, who got a little fortune there. He projected the mile and half stones round London; and teased the printers of newspapers into the plan of letter-boxes. He was remarkably humane and benevolent, and, without the least ostentation, performed many generous and charitable actions, which would have dignified a more ample fortune.


A suppliant to your window comes,
Who trusts your faith, and fears no guile:
He claims admittance for your crumbs,
And reads his passport in your smile.

For cold and cheerless is the day,
And he has sought the hedges round;
No berry hangs upon the spray,
Nor worm, nor ant-egg, can be found.

Secure his suit will be preferred,
No fears his slender feet deter;
For sacred is the household bird
That wears the scarlet stomacher.

Charlotte Smith.


January 15.

St. Paul, the first Hermit. St. Maurus, St. Main. St. John, Calybite. St. Isidore. St. Bonitus. St. Ita, or Mida[.]

St. Paul, A. D. 342.

The life of St. Paul, the first hermit, is said, by Butler, to have been written by St. Jerome in 365, who received an account of it from St. Anthony and others. According to him when twenty-two years old, St. Paul fled from the persecution of Decius to a cavern, near which grew a palm-tree, that supplied him with leaves for clothing, and fruit for food, till he was forty-three years of age; after which he was daily fed by a raven till he was ninety and then died. St. Anthony, in his old age, being tempted by vanity, imagined himself the first hermit, till the contrary was revealed to him in a dream, wherefore, the next morning, he set out in search of St. Paul. "St. Jerome relates from his authors," says Butler, "that he met a centaur, or creature, not with the nature and properties, but with something of the mixt shape of man and horse; and that this monster, or phantom of the devil, (St. Jerome pretends not to determine which it was,) upon his making the sign of the cross, fled away, after pointing out the way to the saint. Our author (St. Jerome) adds, that St. Anthony soon after met a satyr, who gave him to understand that he was an inhabitant of those deserts, and one of the sort whom the deluded gentiles adored for gods." Ribadeneira describes this satyr as with writhed nostrils, two little horns on his forehead, and the feet of a goat. After two days' search, St. Anthony found St. Paul, and a raven brought a loaf, whereupon they took their corporal refection. The next morning, St. Paul told him he was going to die, and bid him fetch a cloak given to St. Anthony by St. Athanasius, and wrap his body in it. St. Anthony then knew that St. Paul must have been informed of the cloak by revelation, and went forth from the desert to fetch it; but before his return, St. Paul had died, and St. Anthony found two lions digging his grave with their claws, wherein he buried St. Paul, first wrapping him in St. Athanasius's cloak, and preserving, as a great treasure, St. Paul's garment, made of palm-tree leaves, stitched together. How St. Jerome, in his conclusion of St. Paul's life, praises this garment, may be seen in Ribadeneira.


A writer, who signs himself "Crito" in the "Truth Teller," No. 15, introduces us to an honest enthusiast, discoursing to his hearers on the snow-drop of the season, and other offerings from Flora, to the rolling year. "Picture to your imagination, a poor, 'dirty' mendicant, of the order of St. Francis, who had long prayed and fasted in his sanctuary, and long laboured in his garden, issuing out on the morning of his first pilgrimage, without money and without provisions, clad in his mantle and hood, 'like a sad votarist in palmer's weeds;' and thus, and in these words, taking leave of the poor flock who lived round his gothic habitation.— 'Fellowmen, I owe you nothing, and I give you all; you neither paid me tithe nor rent, yet I have bestowed on you food and clothing in poverty, medicine in sickness, and spiritual counsel in adversity. That I might do all these things, I have devoted my life in the seclusion of those venerable walls. There I have consulted the sacred books of our church for your spiritual instruction and the good of your souls; to clothe you, I have sold the embroidered garment, and have put on the habit of mendicity. In the intercalary moments of my canonical hours of prayer, I have collected together the treasures of Flora, and gathered from her plants the useful arts of physic, by which you have benefited. Ever mindful of the useful object of the labour to which I had condemned myself, I have brought together into the garden of this priory, the lily of the valley and the gentian of the mountain, the nymphæa of the lake, and the cliver of the arid bank; in short, I have collected the pilewort, the throatwort, the liverwort, and every other vegetable specific which the kind hand of nature has spread over the globe, and which I have designated by their qualities, and have converted to your use and benefit. Mindful also of the pious festivals which our church prescribes, I have sought to make these charming objects of floral nature, the timepieces of my religious calendar, and the mementos of the hastening period of my mortality. Thus I can light the taper to our Virgin Mother on the blowing of the white snow-drop, which opens its floweret at the time of Candlemas; the lady's smock and the daffodil remind me of the Annunciation; the blue harebell, of the festival of St. George; the ranunculus, of the Invention of the Cross; the scarlet lynchis, of St. John the Baptist's day; the white lily, of the Visitation of our Lady; and the virgin's bower, of her Assumption; and Michaelmas, Martinmas, Holy Rood, and Christmas, have all their appropriate monitors. I learn the time of day from the shutting of the blossoms of the star of Jerusalem and the dandelion, and the hour of the night by the stars."' From kind feelings to the benevolence of the Franciscan mendicant's address, which we may suppose ourselves to have just heard, we illustrate something of his purpose, by annexing the rose, the tulip, and the passion-flower, after an engraving by a catholic artist, who has impressed them with devotional monograms, and symbols of his faith.

Flower images with superimposed religious symbols




What sports do you use in the forest?—


Not many; some few, as thus:—
To see the sun to bed, and to arise,
Like some hot amourist with glowing eyes,
Bursting the lazy bands of sleep that bound him,
With all his fires and travelling glories round him:
Sometimes the moon on soft night clouds to rest,
Like beauty nestling in a young man's breast,
And all the winking stars, her handmaids, keep
Admiring silence, while those lovers sleep,
Sometimes outstretcht, in very idleness,
Naught doing, saying little, thinking less,
To view the leaves thin dancers upon air,
Go in eddy ground [round?]; and small birds, how they fare,
When mother Autumn fills their beaks with corn,
Filch'd from the careless Amalthea's horn;
And how the woods berries and worms provide
Without their pains, when earth has naught beside
To answer their small wants.


January 16.

St. Marcellus, Pope. St. Macarius the elder, of Egypt. St. Honoratus. St. Farsey. St. Henry, Hermit, &c.

St. Marcellus, Pope.

According to Butler, he was so strict in penance, that the Christians disliked him; he was banished by Maxentius, "for his severity against a certain apostate;" and died pope in 310.


In the first of the "Letters from the Irish Islands," in 1823, the writer addresses to his friend, a description of the rainbow on the hills at this season of the year. He says, "I could wish (provided I could ensure you one fine day in the course of the week) that you were here, to enjoy, in rapid succession, and, with all its wild magnificence, the whirlwind, the tempest, the ocean's swell, and, as Burns beautifully expresses it,

Some gleams of sunshine, 'mid renewing storms.

To-day there have been fine bright intervals, and, while returning from a hasty ride, I have been greatly delighted with the appearance of a rainbow, gradually advancing before the lowering clouds, sweeping with majestic stride across the troubled ocean, then, as it gained the beach, and seemed almost within my grasp, vanishing amid the storm, of which it had been the lovely, but treacherous, forerunner. It is, I suppose, a consequence of our situation, and the close connection between sea and mountain, that the rainbows here are so frequent, and so peculiarly beautiful. Of an amazing breadth, and with colours vivid beyond description, I know not whether most to admire this aerial phenomenon, when, suspended in the western sky, one end of the bow sinks behind the island of Boffin, while, at the distance of several leagues, the other rests upon the misty hills of Ennis Turc; or when, at a later hour of the day, it has appeared stretched across the ample sides of Mölbrea, penetrating far into the deep blue waters that flow at its base. With feelings of grateful recollection too, we may hail the repeated visits of this heavenly messenger, occasionally, as often as five or six times in the course of the same day, in a country exposed to such astonishing, and, at times, almost incessant floods of rain."

Behold yon bright, etherial bow,
With evanescent beauties glow;
The spacious arch streams through the sky,
Deck'd with each tint of nature's dye,
Refracted sunbeams, through the shower,
A humid radiance from it pour;
Whilst colour into colour fades,
With blended lights and softening shades.


"It is a happy effect of extreme mildness and moisture of climate, that most of our hills (in Ireland) are covered with grass to a considerable height, and afford good pasturage both in summer and winter. The grasses most abundant are the dogstail, (cynosaurus cristatus,) several species of the meadow grass, (poa,) the fescue, (festuca duriuscula and pratensis,) and particularly the sweet-scented vernal grass, (anthoxanthum odoratum,) which abounds in the dry pastures, and mountain sides; where its withered blossoms, which it is remarkable that the cattle do not eat, give a yellowish brown tint to the whole pasture. Our bog lands are overrun with the couch, or fiorin grass, (agrostis stolonifera,) several other species of the agrostis, and the aira. This is, indeed, the country for a botanist; and one so indefatigable as yourself, would not hesitate to venture with us across the rushy bog, where you would be so well rewarded for the labour of springing from one knot of rushes to another, by meeting with the fringed blossoms of the bog-bean, (menyanthes trifoliata,) the yellow asphodel, (narthecium ossifragum,) the pale bog violet, (viola palustris,) both species of the pinguicula, and of the beautiful drosera, the English fly-trap, spreading its dewy leaves glistening in the sun. I could also point out to you, almost hid in the moist recesses of some dripping rock, the pretty miniature fern, (trichomanes Tunbridgensis,) which you may remember showing me for the first time at Tunbridge Wells: the osmunda lunaria and regalis are also to be found, with other ferns, mosses, and lichens, which it is far beyond my botanical skill to distinguish.—The man of science, to whatever branch of natural history his attention is directed, will indeed find never-failing sources of gratification, in exploring paths, hitherto almost untrodden, in our wild country. Scarcely a county in England is without its peculiar Flora, almost every hill and every valley have been subject to repeated, scientific examination; while the productions of nature, so bountifully accorded to poor Ireland, are either unknown or disregarded."


From the many games of forfeits that are played in parlours during in-door weather, one is presented to the perusal of youthful readers from "Winter Evening Pastimes."

Aunty's Garden.

"The company being all seated in a circle, the person who is to conduct the game proposes to the party to repeat, in turns, the speech he is about to make; and it is agreed that those who commit any mistake, or substitute one word for another, shall pay a forfeit. The player then commences by saying, distinctly, 'I am just come from my aunt Deborah's garden. Bless me! what a fine garden is my aunt's garden! In my aunt's garden there are four corners.' The one seated to the player's right is to repeat this, word for word: if his memory fails he pays a forfeit, and gives up his turn to his next right-hand neighbour, not being permitted to correct his mistake. When this has gone all round, the conductor repeats the first speech, and adds the following:

'In the first corner stands a superb alaternus,
Whose shade, in the dog-days, won't let the sun burn us.'

"This couplet having been sent round as before, he then adds the following:

'In the second corner grows
A bush which bears a yellow rose:
Would I might my love disclose!'

"This passes round in like manner:

"In the third corner Jane show'd me much London pride;
Let your mouth to your next neighbour's ear be applied,
And quick to his keeping a secret confide."

"At this period of the game every one must tell his right-hand neighbour some secret.

In the fourth round, after repeating the whole of the former, he concludes thus:

'In the fourth corner doth appear
      Of amaranths a crowd;
Each secret whisper'd in the ear
      Must now be told aloud.'

"Those who are unacquainted with this game occasionally feel not a little embarrassed at this conclusion, as the secrets revealed by their neighbour may be such as they would not like to be published to the whole party. Those who are aware of this finesse take care to make their secrets witty, comic, or complimentary."


This is the eldest of the seasons: he
     Moves not like Spring with gradual step, nor grows
     From bud to beauty, but with all his snows
Comes down at once in hoar antiquity.
No rains nor loud proclaiming tempests flee
     Before him, nor unto his time belong
     The suns of summer, nor the charms of song,
That with May's gentle smiles so well agree.
But he, made perfect in his birthday cloud,
     Starts into sudden life with scarce a sound,
     And with a tender footstep prints the ground,
As tho' to cheat man's ear; yet while he stays
He seems as 'twere to prompt our merriest lays,
And bid the dance and joke be long and loud.

Literary Pocket Book, 1820.


January 17.

St. Anthony, Patriarch of Monks. Sts. Speusippus, Eleusippus, and Meleusippus. Sts. Sulpicius I. and II., Abps. of Bourges. St. Milgithe. St. Nennius, or Nennidhius.

St. Anthony, Patriarch of Monks.

The memoirs of St. Anthony make a distinguished figure in the lives of the saints by Alban Butler, who states the particulars to have been extracted from "The Life of St. Anthony," compiled by the great St. Athanasius; "a work," says Butler, "much commended by St. Gregory Nazianzen, St. Jerom[e], St. Austin," &c. This statement by Butler, whose biographical labours are estimated by catholics as of the highest order, and the extraordinary temptations which render the life of St. Anthony eminently remarkable, require at least so much notice of him, as may enable the general reader to determine upon the qualities attributed to him, and the reputation his name has attained in consequence.

According to Butler, St. Anthony was born in 251, at Coma near Heraclea in Egypt, and in that neighbourhood commenced the life of a hermit; he was continually assailed by the devil. His only food was bread with a little salt, he drank nothing but water, never ate before sunset, sometimes only once in two or four days, and lay on a rush mat or on the bare floor. For further solitude he left Coma, and hid himself in an old sepulchre, till, in 285, he withdrew into the deserts of the mountains, from whence, in 305, he descended and founded his first monastery. His undergarment was sack-cloth, with a white sheepskin coat and girdle. Butler says that he "was taught to apply himself to manual labour by an angel, who appeared, platting mats of palm-tree leaves, then rising to pray, and after some time sitting down again to work; and who at length said to him, 'Do this, and thou shalt be saved.' The life, attributed by Butler to St. Athanasius, informs us that our saint continued in some degree to pray whilst he was at work; that he detested the Arians; that he would not speak to a heretic unless to exhort him to the true faith; and that he drove all such from his mountain, calling them venomous serpents. He was very anxious that after his decease he should not be embalmed, and being one hundred and five years old, died in 356, having bequeathed one of his sheepskins, with the coat in which he lay, to St. Athanasius." So far Butler.

St. Athanasius, or rather the life of St. Anthony, before alluded to, which, notwithstanding Butler's authorities, may be doubted as the product of Athanasius; but, however, that may be, that memoir of St. Anthony is very particular in its account of St. Anthony's warfare with the infernal powers. It says that hostilities commenced when the saint first determined on hermitting; "in short, the devil raised a great deal of dust in his thoughts, that by bemudding and disordering his intellects he might make St. Anthony let go his design." In his first conflict with the devil he was victorious, although satan appeared to him in an alluring shape. Next he came in the form of a black boy, and was again defeated. After that Anthony got into a tomb and shut down the top, but the devil found him out, and, with a great company of other devils, so beat and bruised him, that in the morning he was discovered by the person who brought his bread, lying like a dead man on the ground; whereupon he took him up and carried him to the town church, where many of his friends sat by him until midnight. Anthony then coming to himself and seeing all asleep, caused the person who brought him thither to carry him back privately, and again got into the tomb, shutting down the tomb-top as before. Upon this, the devils being very much exasperated, one night, made a noise so dreadful, that the walls shook. "They transformed themselves into the shapes of all sorts of beasts, lions, bears, leopards, bulls, serpents, asps, scorpions and wolves; every one of which moved and acted agreeably to the creatures which they represented; the lion roaring and seeming to make towards him, the bull to butt, the serpent to creep, and the wolf to run at him, and so in short all the rest; so that Anthony was tortured and mangled by them so grievously that his bodily pain was greater than before." But, as it were laughingly, he taunted them, and the devils gnashed their teeth. This continued till the roof of his cell opened, a beam of light shot down, the devels became speechless, Anthony's pain ceased, and the roof closed again. At one time the devil laid the semblance of a large piece of plate in his way, but Anthony, perceiving the devil in the dish, chid it, and the plate disappeared. At another time he saw a quantity of real gold on the ground, and to show the devil "that he did not value money, he leaped over it as a man in a fright over a fire." Having secluded himself in an empty castle, some of his acquaintance came often to see him, but in vain; he would not let them enter, and they remained whole days and nights listening to a tumultuous rout of devils bawling and wailing within. He lived in that state for twenty years, never seeing or being seen by any one, till his friends broke open the door, and "the specta tors were in amazement to see his body that had been so belaboured by devils in the same shape in which it was before his retirement." By way of a caution to others he related the practices of the devils, and how they appeared. He said that, "to scare us, they will represent themselves so tall as to touch the ceiling,

and proportionably broad; they often pretend to sing psalms and cite the scriptures, and sometimes while we are reading they echo what we read; sometimes they stamp, sometimes they laugh, and sometimes they hiss: but when one regards them not, then they weep and la ment as vanquished. Once, when they came threatening and surrounding me like soldiers, accoutred and horsed, and again when they filled the place with wild beasts and creeping things, I sung Psalm xix. 8., and they were presently routed. Another time, when they appeared with a light in the dark, and said, 'We are come, Anthony, to lend thee our light,' I prayed, shutting my eyes, because I disdained to behold their light, and presently their light was put out. After this they came and hissed and danced, but as I prayed, and lay along singing, they presently began to wail and weep as though they were spent. Once there came a devil very tall in appearance, that dared to say, 'What wouldst thou have me bestow upon thee?' but I spat upon him and endeavoured to beat him, and, great as he was, he disappeared with the rest of the devils. Once one of them knocked at the door of my cell, and when I opened it I saw a tall figure; and when I asked him, 'Who art thou?' he answered, 'I am satan; Why do the monks blame and curse me? I have no longer a place or a city, and now the desert is filled with monks; let them not curse one to no purpose.' I said to him, 'Thou art a liar,' &c. and he disappeared." A deal more than this he is related to have said by his biographer, who affirms that Anthony, "having been prevailed upon to go into a vessel and pray with the monks, he, and he only, perceived a wretched and terrible stink; the company said there was some salt fish in the vessel, but he perceived another kind of scent, and while he was speaking, a young man that had a devil, and who had entered before them and hid himself, cried out, and the devil was rebuked by St. Anthony and came out of him, and then they all knew that it was the devil that stunk."—"Wonderful as these things are, there are stranger things yet; for once, as he was going to pray, he was in a rapture, and (which is a paradox) as soon as he stood up, he saw himself without himself, as it were in the air, and some bitter and terrible beings standing by him in the air too, but the angels, his guardians, withstood them."—"He had also another particular favour, for as he was sitting on the mount in a praying posture, and perhaps gravelled with some doubt relating to himself, in the night-time, one called to him, and said, 'Anthony, arise, go forth and look;' so he went out and saw a certain terrible, deformed personage standing, and reaching to the clouds, and winged creatures, and him stretching out his hands; and some of them he saw were stopped by him, and others were flying beyond him; whereupon the tall one gnashed his teeth, and Anthony perceived that it was the enemy of souls, who seizes on those who are accountable to him, but cannot reach those who are not persuadable by him." His biographer declares that the devils fled at his word, as fast as from a whip.

It appears from lady Morgan, that at the confectioners' in Rome, on twelfth-day, "saints melt in the mouth, and the temptations of St. Anthony are easily digested."

Alban Butler says that there is an extant sermon of St. Anthony's wherein he extols the efficacy of the sign of the cross for chasing the devil, and lays down rules for the discernment of spirits. There is reason to believe that he could not read; St. Austin thinks that he did not know the alphabet. He wore his habit to his dying day, neither washing the dirt off his body, nor so much as his feet, unless they were wet by chance when he waded through water on a journey. The jesuit Ribadeneira affirms, that "all the world relented and bemoaned his death, for afterwards there fell no rain from heaven for three years."

The Engraving of ST. ANTHONY conflicting with the DEVIL, in the present sheet, is after Salvator Rosa.

Saints' bodies appear, from the Romish writiers, to have waited undecomposed in their graves till their odour of sanctity rendered it necessary that their remains should be sought out; and their bodies were sure to be found, after a few centuries of burial, as fresh as if they had been interred a few weeks. Hence it is, that though two centuries elapsed before Anthony's was looked for, yet his grave was not only discovered, but his body was in the customary preservation. It was brought to Europe through a miracle. One Joceline, who had neglected a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, was, therefore, sorely wounded in battle, and carried for dead into a chapel dedicated to St. Anthony. When he began to revive, a multitude of devils appeared to drag him to hell and one devil cast a halter about his neck to strangle him, wherefore St. Anthony appeared; the devils flew from him of course, and he commanded Joceline to perform his pilgrimage, and to convey his body from the east; whereupon Joceline obeyed, and carried it to France. When Patrick wrote, thesaint's [sic] beard was shown at Cologne, with a part of his hand, and another piece of him was shown at Tour nay; two of his relics were at Antwerp; a church dedicated to him at Rome was famous for his sackcloth, and part of his palm coat; the other part of it was exhibited at Vienna, and the rest of his body was so multiplied about, that there were limb-bones enough for the remains of half a dozen uncanonized persons. The Romish church has not made saints of late years.


On St. Anthony's day, the beasts at Rome are blessed, and sprinkled with holy water. Dr. Forster, in his "Perennial Calendar," remarks, that "the early Catholics regarded no beasts, birds, or fish as hateful." He says, that "St. Anthony was particularly solicitous about animals, to which a whimsical picture by Salvator Rosa represents him as preaching;" and he suggests, that "from his practices, perhaps, arose the custom of blessings passed on animals still practised at Rome; he regarded all God's creatures as worthy of protection"— except heretics, the doctor might have added; unless, indeed, which seems to have been the case, Anthony regarded them as "creatures" of the devil, between whom, and this saint, we have seen that the Rev. Alban Butler takes especial care we should not be ignorant of the miraculous conflicts just related.

Lady Morgan says, that the annual benediction of the beasts at Rome, in a church there dedicated to St. Anthony, lasts for some days: "for not only every Roman from the pope to the peasant, who has a horse, a mule, or an ass, sends his cattle to be blessed at St. Anthony's shrine, but all the English go with their job horses and favourite dogs; and for the small offering of a couple of paoli, get them sprinkled, sanctified, and placed under the protection of this saint. Coach after coach draws up, strings of mules mix with carts and barouches, horses kick, mules are restive, and dogs snarl, while the officiating priest comes forward from his little chapel, dips a brush into a vase of holy water, sprinkles and prays over the beasts, pockets the fee, and retires."

Dr. Conyers Middleton says, that when he was at Rome, he had his own horses blest for eighteen-pence, as well to satisfy his curiosity, as to humour his coachman, who was persuaded that some mischance would befall them in the year, if they had not the benefit of the benediction.


Lady Morgan describes a picture in the Borghese palace at Rome, representing St. Anthony preaching to the fishes: "The salmon look at the preacher with an edified face, and a cod, with his upturned eyes, seems anxiously seeking for the new light. The saint's sermon is to be had in many of the shops at Rome. St. Anthony addresses the fish, 'Dearly beloved fish;' and the legend adds, that at the conclusion of the discourse, 'the fish bowed to him with profound humility, and a grave and religious countenance.' The saint then gave the fish his blessing, who scudded away to make new conversions,— the missionaries of the main.

"The church of St. Anthony at Rome is painted in curious old frescos, with the temptations of the saint. In one picture he is drawn blessing the devil, disguised in a cowl; probably at that time

'When the devil was sick, and the devil a monk would be;'

"the next picture shows, that

'When the devil was well, the devil a monk was he;'

"for St. Anthony, having laid down in his coffin to meditate the more securely, a parcel of malicious little imps are peeping, with all sorts of whimsical and terrific faces, over its edges, and parodying Hogarth's enraged musician. One abominable wretch blows a post-horn close to the saint's ear, and seems as much delighted with his own music as a boy with a Jew's-harp, or a solo player with his first ad libitum."

St. Anthony's sermon to the fish is given in some of our angling books. If this saint was not the preacher to the fish, but St. Anthony of Padua, the latter has lost the credit of his miraculous exhortation, from the stupendous reputation of his namesake and predecessor. Not to risk the displeasure of him of Padua, by the possibility of mistake, without an attempt to propitiate him if it be a mistake, let it be recorded here, that St. Anthony of Padua's protection of a Portuguese regiment, which enlisted him into its ranks seven hundred years after his death, procured him the honour of being promoted to the rank of captain, by the king of Portugal, as will appear by reference to his military certificate set forth at large in "Ancient Mysteries described."


St. Anthony's fire is an inflammatory disease which, in the eleventh century, raged violently in various parts. According to the legend, the intercession of St. Anthony was prayed for, when it miraculously ceased; and therefore, from that time, the complaint has been called St. Anthony's fire.


Bishop Patrick, from the Salisbury missal and other Romish service-books, cites the supplications to St. Anthony for relief from this disease. Catholic writers affirm it to have been cured by the saint's relics dipped in wine, which proved a present remedy. "Neither," says Patrick, who quotes the Romish writers, "did this benefit by the intercession of St. Anthony accrue only to men, but to cattle also; and from hence we are told the custom arose of picturing this saint with a hog at his feet, because, the same author (Aymerus) says, on this animal God wrought miracles by his servant." Patrick goes on to say, that in honour of St. Anthony's power of curing pigs, "they used in several places to tie a bell about the neck of a pig, and maintain it at the common charge of the parish," from whence came our English proverb of "Tantony pig," or t'Anthony, an abridgement of the Anthony pig.

"I remember," says Stow, "that the officers charged with the oversight of the markets in this city did divers times take from the market people, pigs starved, or otherwise unwholesome for man's sustenance; these they did slit in the ear. One of the proctors for St. Anthony's (Hospital) tied a bell about the neck, (of one of them,) and let it feed on the dunghills: no man would hurt or take it up; but if any gave to them bread, or other feeding, such they (the pigs) would know, watch for, and daily follow, whining till they had somewhat given them: whereupon was raised a proverb, 'Such an one will follow such an one, and whine as it were (like) an Anthony pig.'" If such a pig grew to be fat, and came to good liking, (as oftentimes they did,) then the proctor would take him up to the use of the hospital.

St. Anthony's school in London, now gone to decay, was anciently celebrated for the proficiency of its pupils. Stow relates, that, in his youth, he annually saw, on the eve of St. Bartholomew, the scho lars of the different grammar-schools assembled in the churchyard of St. Bartholomew, Smithfield, and then St. Anthony's scholars commonly were the best, and carried the prizes; and that when the boys of St. Paul's school met with those of St. Anthony's, "they would call them St. Anthony's pigs, and they again would call the others pigeons of Paul's; because many pigeons were bred in Paul's church, and St. Anthony was always figured with a pig following him."

The seal of St. Anthony's Hospital in London was about the size of a half-crown; it represented the saint preaching to a numerous congregation, with his pig beneath him. The Rev. Mr. Orton, rector of Raseby in Leicestershire, was supposed to have been its possessor by the late Mr. S. Ayscough, who adds (in the Gent. Mag.) that the hospital of St. Anthony had a grant of all the stray pigs which were not owned. He presumes that, from thence, originated the emblem of the saint's pig. In this he seems to have been mistaken; it clearly did not originate in England; Patrick's solution of it is more probably, and very likely to be correct.

St. Anthony's is always represented by the old painters with a pig by his side. He is so accompanied in the wood-cut to his life in the Golden Legend. There are many prints of him, by early masters, in this way. Rubens painted a fine picture of the Death of St. Anthony, with his pig, or rather a large bacon hog, lying under the saint's bed: there is a good engraving from this picture by Clouwet.

In the British Museum there is a MS. with a remarkable anecdote that would form an appendix to St. Anthony's day. The names of the parties are forgotten; but the particulars, recollected from accidental perusal, are these:

A tailor was met out of doors by a person who requested to be measured for a suit of clothes, to be ready on that spot by that day week; and the stranger gave him a piece of cloth to make them with. From certain circumstances, the tailor suspected his new customer to be the devil, and communicated his conjectures to a clergyman, who advised him to execute the order, but carefully to save every piece, even the minutest shred he cut from the cloth, and put the whole into a wrapper with the clothes; he further promised the tailor to go with him on the appointed day to the place where they were delivered. When all was ready and the day arrived, they both went thither, and the person waiting justified the tailor's suspicions; for he abused the tailor because he brought a divine, and immediately vanished in their presence, leaving the clothes and pieces of cloth in the possession of the tailor, who could not sell the devil's cloth to pay himself for the making, for fear of the consqeuences:

And here ends the history
Of this wonderful mystery;

from which may be drawn, by way of moral, that a tailor ought not to take an order from a stranger without a reference.


January 18.

St. Peter's Chair at Rome. St. Paul and Thirty-six Companions in Egypt. St. Prisca. St. Deicolus. St. Ulfrid.

The Feast of St. Peter's chair is kept by the Romish church on this day. Lady Morgan says that it is one of the very few functions as they are called (funzioni) celebrated in the cathedral of St. Peter, at Rome. She briefly describes this celebration, and says something respecting St. Peter's chair. "The splendidly dressed troops that line the nave of the cathedral, the variety and richness of vestments which clothe the various church and lay dignitaries, abbots, priests, canons, prelates, cardinals, doctors, dragoons, senators, and grenadiers, which march in procession, complete, as they proceed up the vast space of this wondrous temple, a spectacle nowhere to be equalled within the pale of European civilisation. In the midst of swords and crosiers, of halberds and crucifixes, surrounded by banners, and bending under the glittering tiara of threefold power, appears the aged, feeble, and worn-out pope, borne aloft on men's shoulders, in a chair of crison and gold, and environed by slaves, (for such they look,) who waft, from plumes of ostrich feathers mounted on ivory wands, a cooling gale, to refresh his exhausted frame, too frail for the weight of such honours. All fall prostrate, as he passes up the church to a small choir and throne, temporarily erected beneath the chair of St. Peter. A solemn service is then performed, hosannas arise, and royal votarists and diplomatic devotees parade the church, with guards of honour and running footmen, while English gentlemen and ladies mob and scramble, and crowd and bribe, and fight their way to the best place they can obtain.

"At the extremity of the great nave behind the altar, and mounted upon a tribune designed or ornamented by Michael Angelo, stands a sort of throne, composed of precious materials, and supported by four gigantic figures. A glory of seraphim, with groups of angels, sheds a brilliant light upon its splendours. This throne enshrines the real, plain, worm-eaten, wooden chair, on which St. Peter, the prince of the apostles, is said to have pontificated; more precious than all the bronze, gold, and gems, with which it is hidden, not only from impious, but from holy eyes, and which once only, in the flight of ages, was profaned by mortal inspection.

"The sacrilegious curiosity of the French broke through all obstacles to their seeing the chair of St. Peter. They actually removed its superb casket, and discovered the relic. Upon its mouldering and dusty surface were traced carvings, which bore the appearance of letters. The chair was quickly brought into a better light, the dust and cobwebs removed, and the inscription (for an inscription it was) faithfully copied. The writing is in Arabic characters, and is the well-known confession of Mahometan faith—'There is but one GOD, and MAHOMET is his prophet!' It is supposed that this chair had been, among the spoils of the crusaders, offered to the church at a time when a taste for antiquarian lore, and the deciphering of inscriptions, were not yet in fashion. The story has been since hushed up, the chair replaced, and none but the unhallowed remember the fact, and none but the audacious repeat it. Yet such there are, even at Rome!"

St. Prisca.

This saint's festival stands in the calendar of the church of England this day, as well as in that of the Romish church. Nothing is certainly known of her except that she was a Roman, and martyred about 275.


In the London journals of January, 1824,the following anecdote from a Carlow paper bears the above title:—"A young lady, who died in this town, had been some time previous to her death attended by a gentleman of the medical profession. On the eveing of her decease, as this gentleman was sitting in company with a friend of his, and in the act of taking a glass of punch, he imagined he saw the lady walking into the room where himself and his friend were sitting, and, having but a few hours before visited her, and found her in a dying state, the shock that his nerves experienced was so great, that the glass which held the punch fell from his hands, and he himself dropped on the floor in a fainting fit. After he had perfectly recovered himself, and made inquiry about the lady, it was ascertained that a few minutes before the time the medical gentleman imagined he had seen her in his friend's apartment, she had departed this life." Perhaps this vision may be illustrated by others.


The Editor of the Every-Day Book now relates an appearance to himself.

One winter evening, in 1821, he was writing in a back room on an upper floor of the house No. 45, Ludgate-hill, wherein he now resides. He had been so closely engaged in that way and in reading during several preceding days, that he had taken every meal alone, and in that room, nor did he usually go to bed unto two or three o'clock in the morning. In the early part of the particular evening alluded to, his attention had become wearied. After a doze he found himself refreshed, and was writing when the chimes of St. Paul's clock sounded a quarter to two: long before that dead hour all the family had retired to rest, and the house was silent. A few minutes afterwards he moved round his chair towads the fire-place, and opposite to a large pane of glass which let the light from the room into a closet otherwise dark, the door of which opened upon the landing-place. His eye turning upon the glass, pane, he was amazed by the face of a man anxiously watching him from the closet, with knit inquiring brows. The features were prominent and haggard, and, though the look was somewhat ferocious, it indicated intense curiosity towards the motions of the writer, rather than any purpose of immediate mischief to him. The face seemed somewhat to recede with a quick motion when he first saw it, but gazing on it with great earnestness it appeared closer to the glass, looking at him for a moment, and then with more eager anxiety bending its eyes on the writing-table, as though it chiefly desired to be acquainted with the books and papers that lay upon it. The writer shut and rubbed his eyes, and again the eyes of the face were intently upon him; watching it, he grasped the candlestick, strode hastily towards the room door, which is about two feet from the pane, observed the face as hastily draw back, unlatched the closet door on the landing, was in an instant within the closet, and there to his astonishment found nothing. It was impossible that the person could have escaped from the closet before his own foot was at its door, yet he examined nearly every room in the house, until reflecting that it was folly for what, he was convinced, had no bodily existence, he returned up stairs and went to bed, pondering on the recollection of the spectre.


To the preceding narative [sic] the Editor adds an account of a subsequent apparition, which he saw, and for greater ease he writes it in the first person, as follows:

In January, 1824, one, whose relationship commanded my affection, was about to leave England with his family for a distant part of the world. The day or two preceding his departure I passed with him and his wife and children. Our separation was especially painful; my mind was distressed, and I got little sleep. He had sailed from Gravesend about three days, and a letter that he had promised to write from the Downs had not arrived. On the evening of the 29th I retired late, and being quite wearied slept till an unusually late hour the next morning, without a consciousness of having dreamed, or being, as I found myself, alone. With my head on the pillow I opened my eyes to an extraordinary appearance. Against the wall on the opposite side of the room, and level with my sight, the person, respecting whom I had been so anxious, lay a corpse, extended at full length, as if resting on a table. A greyish cloth covered the entire body except the face; the eyes were closed, the countenance was cadaverous, the mouth elongated from the falling of the jaws, and the lips were purpled. I shut my eyes, rubbed them, and gently raising my head continued to gaze on the body, till from weariness of the attitude and exhausted spirits, I dropped on the pillow, and insensible sunk to sleep, for perhaps a quarter of an hour. On again awaking, the spectre was not there. I then arose, and having mentioned the circumstance to some of my family, caused a memorandum to be made of what I had seen. In the course of the forenoon a person arrived who had gone round with the vessel to the Downs, from whence he had been put ashore the morning before, and saw the ship in full sail. He was the bearer of the letter I had expected from the individual aboard, whose appearance I had witnessed only a few hours previous to its being put into my hands; it of course relieved no apprehension that might have been excited by the recent spectre.

"That the dead are seen no more," said Imlac, "I will not undertake to maintain against the concurrent and unvaried testimony of all ages and of all nations. There is no people, rude or learned, among whom apparitions of the dead are not related and believed. This opinion, which, perhaps, prevails as far as human nature is diffused, could become universal only by its truth; those, that never heard of one another, would never have agreed in a tale which nothing but experience can make credible. That it is doubted by single cavillers can very little weaken the general evidence, and some who deny it with their tongues confess it by their fears."

No man is privileged to impugn the knowledge of existences which others have derived from their experience; but he who sees, without assenting to realities, audaciously rejects positive proof to himself, where presumptive testimony would be satisfactory to most: he daringly falsifies what knows to be indubitably true, and secret convictions belie the shameless hardihood of pretended incredulity. These, it is presumed, would be the sentiments of the great author of Rasselas, upon the expression of disbelief in him who had witnessed spectral appearances; and yet the writer of these pages, with a personal knowledge upon the subject, declines to admit that knowledge as good evidence. He would say untruly were he to affirm, that when he saw the corpse-like form, and for some time afterwards, he had no misgivings as to the safety of his friend. It was not until a lapse of six months that the vessel was reported to have touched at a certain port in good condition, and this was followed by a letter from the individual himself, wherein he affirmed his good health; he subsequently wrote, that he and his family were at the place of their destination. This spectral appearance therefore at Ludgate-hill, between eight and nine o'clock of the morning on the 30th of January, was no indication of his death, nor would it have been had he died about that time, although the coincidence of the apparition and his decease would have been remarkable. The case at Carlow only differs from the case at Ludgate-hill by the decease of the lady having been coeval with her spectral appearance to the gentleman who was depressed by her illness. The face which the writer saw looking at him from a closet in the dead of night was no likeness of any one he knew, and he saw each spectre when his faculties had been forced beyond their healthful bearing. Under these circumstances, his eyesight was not to be trusted, and he refuses to admit it, although the spectres were so extraordinary, and appeared under such circumstances that probably they will never be forgotten.

Coupled with the incidents just related, the death of the king of Naples in January 1825, which was first announced in the "News" Sunday paper on the 16th of the month, recalls the recollection of a singular circumstance in the bay of Naples. The fact and the facts preceding it are related by Dr. Southey in his "Life of Nelson." Having spoken of Nelson's attachment to lady Hamilton, and his weariness of the world, Dr. Southey proceeds thus:—

"Well had it been for Nelson if he had made no other sacrifices to this unhappy attachment than his peace of mind; but it led to the only blot upon his public character. While he sailed from Palermo, with the intention of collecting his whole force, and keeping off Maretimo, either to receive reinforcements there, if the French were bound upwards, or to hasten to Minorca, if that should be their destination, capt. Foote, in the Seahorse, with the Neapolitan frigates and some small vessels under his commands, was left to act with a land force consisting of a few regular troops, of four different nations, and with the armed rabble which cardinal Ruffo called the Christian army. His directions were to cooperate to the utmost of his power with royalists, at whose head Ruffo had been placed, and he had no other instructions whatever. Ruffo advancing with out any plan, but relying upon the enemy's want of numbers, which prevented them from attempting to act upon the offensive, and ready to take advantage of any accident which might occur, approached Naples. Fort St. Elmo, which commands the town, was wholly garrisoned by the French troops; the castles of Uovo and Nuovo, which commanded the anchorage, were chiefly defended by Neapolitan revolutionists, the powerful men among them having taken shelter there. If these castles were taken, the reduction of Fort St. Elmo would be greatly expedited. They were strong places, and there was reason to apprehend that the French fleet might arrive to relieve them. Ruffo proposed to the garrison to capitulate, on condition that their persons and property should be guaranteed, and that they should, at their own option, either be sent to Toulon, or remain at Naples, without being molested either in their persons or families, This capitulation was accepted: it was signed by the cardinal, and the Russian and Turkish commanders; and, lastly, by capt. Foote, as commander of the British force. About six and thirty hours afterwards Nelson arrived in the bay, with a force which had joined him during his cruise, consisting of seventeen sail of the line, with 1700 troops on board, and the prince royal of Naples in the admiral's ship. A flag of truce was flying on the castles, and on board the Seahorse. Nelson made a signal to annul the treaty; declaring that he would grant rebels no other terms than those of unconditional submission. The cardinal objected to this: nor could all the arguments of Nelson, sir W. Hamilton, and lady Hamilton, who took an active part in the conference, convince him that a treaty of such a nature, solemnly concluded, could honourably be set aside. He retired at last, silenced by Nelson's authority, but not convinced. Capt. Foote was sent out of the bay; and the garrisons taken out of the castles under pretence of carrying the treaty into effect, were delivered over as rebels to the vengeance of the Sicilian court.—A deplorable transaction! a stain upon the memory of Nelson, and the honour of England! To palliate it would be in vain; to justify it would be wicked: there is no alternative, for one who will not make himself a participator in guilt, but to record the disgraceful story with sorrow and with shame.

"Prince Francesco Caraccioli, a younger branch of one of the noblest Neapolitan families, escaped from one of these castles before it capitulated. He was at the head of the marine, and was nearly seventy years of age, bearing a high character both for professional and personal merit. He had accompanied the court to Sicily; but when the revolutionary government, or Parthenopæan republic, as it was called, issued an edict, ordering all absent Neapolitans to return, on pain of confiscation of their property, he solicited and obtained permission of the king to return, his estates being very great. It is said that the king, when he granted him this permission, warned him not to take any part in politics; expressing, at the same time, his own persuasion that he should recover his kingdom. But neither the king, nor he himself, ought to have imagined that, in such times, a man of such reputation would be permitted to remain inactive; and it soon appeared that Caraccioli was again in command of the navy, and serving under the republic against his late sovereign. The sailors reported that he was forced to act thus: and this was believed, till it was seen that he directed ably the offensive operations of the revolutionists, and did not avail himself of opportunities for escaping when they offered. When the recovery of Naples was evidently near, he applied to cardinal Ruffo, and to the duke of Calvirrano, for protection; expressing his hope, that the few days during which he had been forced to obey the French, would not outweigh forty years of faithful services:—but, perhaps, not receiving such assurances as he wished, and knowing too well the temper of the Sicilian court, he endeavoured to secrete himself, and a price was set upon his head. More unfortunately for others than for himself, he was brought in alive, having been discovered in the disguise of a peasant, and carried one morning on board lord Nelson's ship, with his hands tied behind him.

"Caraccioli was well known to the British officers, and had been ever highly esteemed by all who knew him. Capt. Hardy ordered him immediately to be unbound, and to be treated with all those attentions which he felt due to a man who, when last on board the Foudroyant, had been received as an admiral and a prince. Sir William and lady Hamilton were in the ship; but Nelson, it is affirm ed, saw no one, except his own officers, during the tragedy which ensued. His own determination was made; and he issued an order to the Neapolitan commodore, count Thurn, to assemble a court-martial of Neapolitan officers, on board the British flag-ship, proceed immediately to try the prisoner, and report to him, if the charges were proved, what punishment he ought to suffer. These proceedings were as rapid as possible; Caraccioli was brought on board at nine in the forenoon, and the trial began at ten. It lasted two hours; he averred, in his defence, that he acted under compulsion, having been compelled to serve as a common soldier, till he consetned to take command of the fleet. This, the apologists of lord Nelson say, he failed in proving. They forget that the possibility of proving it was not allowed him; for he was brought to trial within an hour after he was legally in arrest; and how, in that time, was he to collect his witnesses? He was found guilty, and sentenced to death; and Nelson gave orders that the sentence should be carried into effect that evening, at five o'clock, on board the Sicilian frigate La Minerva, by hanging him at the fore-yard-arm till sunset; when the body was to be cut down, and thrown into the sea. Caraccioli requested lieutentant Parkinson, under whose custody he was placed, to interceded with lord Nelson for a second trial,—for this, among other reaons, that count Thurn, who presided at the court-martial, was notoriously his personal enemy. Nelson made answer, that the prisoner had been fairly tried by the officers of his own country, and he could not interfere: forgetting that, if he felt himself justified in ordering the trial and the execution, no human being could ever have questioned the propriety of his interfering on the side of mercy. Caraccioli then entreated that he might be shot.—-'I am an old man, sir,' said he: 'I leave no family to lament me, and therefore cannot be supposed to be very anxious about prolonging my life; but the disgrace of being hanged is dreadful to me.' When this was repeated to Nelson, he only told the lieutenant, with much agitation, to go and attend his duty. As a last hope, Caraccioli asked the lieutenant, if he thought an application to lady Hamilton would be beneficial? Parkinson went to seek her. She was not to be seen on this occasion,—but she was present at the execution. She had the most devoted attachment to the Neapolitan court; and the hatred which she felt against those whom she regarded as its enemies, made her, at this time, forget what was due to the character of her sex, as well as of her country. Here, also, a faithful historian is called upon to pronounce a severe and unqualified condemnation of Nelson's conduct. Had he the authority of his Sicilian majesty for proceeding as he did? If so, why was not that authority produced? If not, why were the proceedings hurried on without it? Why was the trial precipitated, so that it was impossible for the prisoner, if he had been innocent, to provide the witnesses who might have proved him so? Why was a second trial refused, when the known animosity of the president of the court against the prisoner was considered? Why was the execution hastened, so as to preclude any appeal for mercy, and render the prerogative of mercy useless:—Doubtless, the British admiral seemed to himself to be acting under a rigid sense of justice; but, to all other persons, it was obvious, that he was influenced by and infatuated attachement—a baneful passion, which destroyed his domestic happiness, and now, in a second instance, stained ineffaceably his public character.

"The body was carried out to a considerable distance, and sunk in the bay, with three double-headed shot, weighing 250 pounds, tied to its legs. Between two and three weeks afterward, when the king was on board the Foudroyant, a Neapolitan fisherman came to the ship, and solemnly declared, that Caraccioli had risen from the bottom of the sea, and was coming, as fast as he could, to Naples, swimming half out of the water. Such an account was listened to like a tale of idle credulity. The day being fair, Nelson, to please the king, stood out to sea; but the ship had not proceeded far before a body was distinctly seen, upright in the water, and approaching them. It was soon recognised to be, indeed, the corpse of Caraccioli, which had risen and floated, while the great weights attached to the legs kept the body in a position like that of a living man. A fact so extraordinary astonished the king, and perhaps excited some feeling of superstitious fear, akin to regret. He gave permission for the body to be taken on shore, and receive christian burial."

The late Dr. Clarke mentions in his "Travels," that as he was "one day leaning out of the cabin window, by the side of an officer who was employed in fishing, the corpse of a man, newly sewed in a hammock, started half out of the water, and continued its course, with the current, towards the shore. Nothing could be more horrible: its head and shoulders were visible, turning first to one side, then to the other, with a solemn and awful movement, as if impressed with some dreadful secret of the deep, which, from its watery grave, it came upwards to reveal." Dr. Ferriar observes, that "in a certain stage of putrefaction, the bodies of persons which have been immersed in water, rise to the surface, and in deep water are supported in an erect posture, to the terror of uninstructed spectators. Menacing looks and gestures, and even words, are supplied by the affrighted imagination, with infinte facility, and referred to the horrible apparition." This is perfectly natural; and it is easy to imagine the excessive terror of extreme ignorance at such appearances.


January 19.

Sts. Martha, Maris, Audifax, and Abachum. St. Canutus. St. Henry. St. Wulstan St. Blaithmaie. St. Lomer.

Sts. Martha, Maris, &c.

St. Martha was married to St. Maris, and with their sons, Sts. Audifax and Abachum, were put to death under Aurelian (A. D. 270.) Butler says, that their relics were found at Rome, in 1590, one thousand three hundred and twenty years afterwards.


The monks, or the observers of monkish rules, have compiled a Catalogue of Flowers for each day in the year, and dedicated each flower to a particular saint, on account of its flowering about the time fo the saint's festival. Such appropriations are a Floral Directory throughout the year, and will be inserted under the succeeding days. Those which belong to this and the eighteen preceding days in January are in the following list:—


1st. St. Faine. NEW YEAR'S DAY.
Laurustine. Viburnum Tinus.

2d. St. Macarius.
Groundsel. Senecio vulgaris.

3d. St. Genevieve.
Persian Fleur-de-lis. Iris Persica.

4th. St. Titus
Hazel. Corylus avellana.

5th. St. Simeon Stylites.
Bearsfoot.Helleborus foetidus.

6th. St. Nilammon.
Screw MossTortula rigida.

7th. St. Kentigern.
Portugal Laurel. Prunus Lusitanica.

8th. St. Gudula.
Yellow Tremella. Tremella deliquescens.

9th. St. Marciana.
Common Laurel. Prunus Laurocerasus.

10th. St. William.
Gorse. Ulex Europæas.

11th. St. Theodosius.
Early Moss. Bryum horæum.

12th. St. Arcadius.
Hygrometic Moss. Funaria hygrometica.

13th. St. Veronica.
Yew Tree. Taxus baccata.

14th. St. Hilary.
Barren Strawberry. Fragaria sterilis.

15th. St. Paul the Hermit.
Ivy. Hedera helix.

16th. St. Marcellus.
Common Dead Nettle. Larnium purpureum.

17th. St. Anthony.
Garden Anemone. Anemone hortensis.

18th. St. Prisca.
Four-toothed Moss. Bryum pellucidum.

19th. St. Martha.
White Dead Nettle. Larnium album.


In the "Flora Domestica" there is a beautiful quotation from Cowley, in proof that the emperor Dioclesian preferred his garden to a throne:

   Methinks I see great Dioclesian walk
In the Salonian garden's noble shade,
Which by his own imperial hands was made[;]
   I see him smile, methinks, as he does talk
With the ambassadors, who come in vain
T'entice him to a throne again.
"If I, my friends," said he, "should to you show
All the delights which in these gardens grow,
'Tis liklier far that you with me should stay,
Than 'tis that you should carry me away;
And trust me not, my friends, if, every day,
I walk not here with more delight,
Than ever, after the most happy fight,
In triumph to the capitol I rode,
To thank the gods, and to be thought myself almost a god."

To the author of the "Flora Domestica," and to the reader who may not have seen a volume so acceptable to the cultivator of flowers, it would be injustice to extract from its pages without remarking its usefulness, and elegance of composition. Lamenting that "plants often meet with an untimely death from the ignorance of their nurses," the amiable author "resolved to obtain and to communicate such information as should be requisite for the rearing and preserving a portable garden in pots;—and henceforward the death of any plant, owing to the carelessness or ignorance of its nurse, shall be brought in at the best as plant-slaughter."

The cultivation of plants commences with our infancy. If estranged from it by the pursuits of active life, yet, during a few years retirement from the "great hum" of a noisy world, we naturally recur to a garden as to an old and cheerful friend whom we had forgotten or neglected, and verify the saying, "once a man, twice a child." There is not "one of woman born" without a sense of pleasure when he sees buds bursting into leaf; earth yielding green shoots from germs in its warm bosom; white fruit-blossoms, tinted with rose-blushes, standing out in clumps from slender branches; flowers courting the look by their varied loveliness, and the smell by their delicacy; large juicy apples bowing down the almost tendril-shoots wherefrom they miraculously spring; plants of giant growth with multiform shrubs beyond, and holly-hocks towering like painted pinnacles from hidden shrines:

———————Can imagination boast,
'Mid all its gay creation, charms like these?

Dr. Forster, the scientific author of a treatise on "Atmospheric Phenomena," and other valuable works, has included numerous useful observations on the weather in his recently published "Perennial Calendar," a volume replete with instruction and entertainment. He observes, in the latter work, that after certain atmospheric appearances on this day in the year 1809, "a hard and freezing shower of hail and sleet came with considerable violence from the east, and glazed every thing on which it fell with ice; it incrusted the walls, encased the trees and the garments of people, and even the plumage of birds, so that many rooks and other fowls were found lying on the ground, stiff with an encasement of ice. Such weather," Dr. Forster Observes, "has been aptly described by Philips as occurring oftentimes during a northern winter:—

Ere yet the clouds let fall the treasured snow,
Or winds begun through hazy skies to blow,
At evening a keen eastern breeze arose,
And the descending rain unsullied froze.
Soon as the silent shades of night withdrew,
The ruddy morn disclosed at once to view
The face of Nature in a rich disguise,
And brightened every object to my eyes;
For every shrub, and every blade of grass,
And every pointed thorn, seemed wrought in glass,
In pearls and rubies rich the hawthorns show,
While through the ice the crimson berries glow,
The thick-sprung reeds the watery marshes yield
Seem polished lances in a hostile field.
The stag in limpic currents, with surprise,
Sees crystal branches on hsi forehead rise.
The spreading oak, the beech, and tow'ring pine,
Glaz'd over, in the freezing ether shine.
The frighted birds the rattling branches shun,
That wave and glitter in the distant sun.
When, if a sudden gust of wind arise,
The brittle forest into atoms flies;
The cracking wood beneath the tempest bends,
And in a spangled shower the prospect ends.

Philips, Lett. from Copenhagen.

"It may be observed, that in both the above descriptions of similar phenomena, the east wind is recorded as bringing up the storm. There is something very remarkably unwholesome in east winds, and a change to that quarter often disturbs the nervous system and digestive organs of many persons, causing headaches, fevers, and other disorders. Moreover, a good astronomical observation cannot be made when the wind is east: the star seems to oscillate or dance about in the field of the telescope."

In the truth of these observations as regards health, he who writes this is unhappily qualified to concur from experience; and were it in his power, would ever shun the north-east as his most fearful enemy.

Sir, the north-east, more fierce than Russian cold,
Pierces the very marrow in the bones,"
Presses upon the brain an arid weight,
And superflows life's current with a force
That checks the heart, and sould, and mind, and strength,
In all their purposes.——
   Up with the double window-sashes—quick!
Close every crevice from the withering blast,
and stop the keyhole tight—the wind-fiend comes!


January 20.

St. Fabian, Pope. St. Sebastian. St. Euthymius. St. Fechin.

St. Fabian

This saint was in the church of England calendar; he was bishop of Rome, A.D. 250: the Romish calendar calls him pope.

St. Sebastian's Day

Is noted in Doblada's Letters from Spain, as within the period that ushers in the carnival with rompings in the streets, and vulgar mirth.

"The custom alluded to by Horace of sticking a tail, is still practised by the boys in the streets, to the great annoyance of old ladies, who are generally the objects of this sport. One of the ragged striplings that wander in crowds about Seville, having tagged a piece of paper with a hooked pin, and stolen unperceived behind some slow-paced female, as wrapt up in her veil, she tells the beads she carries in her left hand, fastens the paper-tail on the back of the black or walking petticoat called Saya. The whole gang of ragamuffins, who, at a convenient distance, have watched the dexterity of their companion, set up a loud cry of 'L'argalo, l'argalo'—'Drop it, drop it'—this makes every female in the street look to the rear, which, they well know, is the fixed point of attack with the merry light-troops. The alarm continues till some friendly hand relieves the victim of sport, who, spinning and nodding like a spent top, tries in vain to catch a glance at the fast-pinned paper, unmindful of the physical law which forbids her head revolving faster than the great orbit on which the ominous comet flies."


Formerly this was a night of great import to maidens who desired to know who they should marry. Of such it was required, that they should not eat on this day, and those who conformed to the rule, called it fasting St. Agnes' fast.

And on sweet St. Agnes' night
Please you with the promis'd sight,
Some of husbands, some of lovers,
Which an empty dream discovers.


Old Aubrey has a recipe, whereby a lad or lass was to attain a sight of the fortunate lover. "Upon St. Agnes' night you take a row of pins, and pull out every one, one after another, saying Pater Noster, sticking a pin in your sleeve, and you will dream of him or her you shall marry."

Little is remembered of these homely methods for knowing "all about sweethearts," and the custom would scarcely have reached the greater number of readers, if one of the sweetest of our modern poets had not preserved its recollection in a delightful poem. Some stanzas are culled from it, with the hope that they may be read by a few to whom the poetry of Keates [sic] is unknown, and awaken a desire for further acquaintance with his beauties:—

The Eve of St. Agnes.

       St. Agnes Eve? Ah, bitter chill it was!
       The owl, for all his feathers, was a-cold;
       The hare limp'd trembling through the frozen grass,
       And silent was the flock in woolly fold;

       *        *         *         *         *         *         *

       They told her how, upon St. Agnes' Eve,
       Young Virgins might have visions of delight,
       And soft adorings from their loves receive
       Upon the honey'd middle of the night,
       If ceremonies due they did aright;
       As, supperless to bed they must retire,
       And couch supine their beauties, lily white;
       Nor look behind, nor sideways, but require
Of Heaven with upward eyes for all that they desire.

       *         *         *         *         *         *         *

       Full of this whim was thoughtful Madeline

       *         *         *         *         *         *         *

       Out went the taper as she hurried in;
       Its little smoke, in pallid moonshine, died:
       She clos'd the door, she panted, all akin
       To spirits of the air, and visions wide
       No uttered syllable, or, woe betide!
       But to her heart, her heart was voluble,
       Paining with eloquence her balmy side;
       As though a tongueless nightingale should swell
Her throat in vain, and die, heart-stifled, in her dell.

       A casement high and triple arch'd there was,
       All garlanded with carven imag'ries
       Of fruits, and flowers, and bunches of knot grass,
       And diamonded with panes of quaint device
       Innumerable of stains and splendid dyes,
       As are the tiger-moth's deep damask'd wings;
       And in the midst, 'mong thousand heraldries,
       And twilight saints, with dim emblazonings,
A shielded 'scutcheon blush'd with blood of queens and kings.

       Full on this casement shone the wintry moon,
       And threw warm gules on Madeline's fair breast,
       As down she knelt for Heaven's grace and boon;
       Rose-bloom fell on her hands, together prest,
       And on her silver cross soft amethyst,
       And on her hair a glory, like a saint:
       She seem'd a splendid angel, newly drest,
       Save wings, for Heaven:—

       *         *         *         *         *         *         *

       ————Her vespers done
       Of all its wreathed pearls her hair she frees;
       Unclasps her warmed jewels one by one;
       Loosens her fragrant boddice; by degrees
       Her rich attire creeps rustling to her knees
       Half-hidden, like a mermaid in sea-weed,
       Pensive awhile she dreams awake, and sees,
       In fancy, fair St. Agnes in her bed,
But dares not look behind, or all the charm is fled.

       Soon, trembling in her soft and chilly nest,
       In sort of wakeful swoon, perplex'd she lay,
       Until the poppied warmth of sleep oppress'd
       Her soothed limbs, and soul fatigued away;
       Flown, like a thought, until the morrow day,
       Blissfully haven'd both from joy and pain;
       Clasp'd like a missal where swart Paynims pray;
       Blinded alike from sunshine and from rain,
As though a rose should shut, and be a bud again.

       Stol'n to this paradise, and so extranced [sic],
       Porphyro gazed upon her empty dress,
       And listened to her breathing. ——
       ————Shaded was her dream
       By the dusk curtains:—'twas a midnight charm
       Impossible to melt as iced stream:—
       *         *         *         *         *         *         *

       He took her hollow lute,—
       Tumultuous,—and, in chords that tenderest be,
       He play'd an ancient ditty, long since mute,
       In Provence call'd, "La belle dame sans mercy:"
       Close to her ear touching the melody;—
       Wherewith disturb'd, she utter'd a soft moan:
       He ceas'd—she panted quick—and suddenly
       Her blue affrayed eyes wide open shone:
Upon his knees he sank, pale as smooth-sculptured stone.

       Her eyes were open, but she still beheld,
       Now wide awake, the vision of her sleep:
       There was a painful change, that nigh expell'd
       The blisses of her dream so pure and deep,
       At which fair Madeline began to weep,
       And moan forth witless words with many a sigh,
       While still her gaze on Porphyro would keep;
       Sho knelt, with joined hands and piteous eye,
Fearing to move or speak, she look'd so dreamingly.

       "Ah, Porphyro!" said she, "but even now
       "Thy voice was at sweet temble in mine ear,
       "Made tuneable with every sweetest vow;
       "And those sad eyes were spiritual and clear:
       "How chang'd thou art! how pallid, chill, and drear!
       "Give me that voice again, my Porphyro,
       "Those looks immortal, those complainings dear!
       "Oh, leave me not in this eternal woe,
"For if thou diest, my love, I know not where to go."

       Beyond a mortal man impassion'd far
       At these voluptuous accents, he arose,
       Ethereal, flush'd, and like a throbbing star,
       Seen 'mid the sapphire heaven's deep repose,
       Into her dream he melted, as the rose
       Blendeth its odour with the violet,—
       Solution sweet: meantime the frost-wind blows
       Like Love's alarum pattering the sharp sleet
Against the window-panes."
       *        *        *        *        *         *         *

       "Hark! 'tis an elfin-storm from faery land,
       "Of haggard seeming, but a boon indeed
       "Arise—arise! the morning is at hand;—
       "Let us away, my love, with happy speed.—
       *        *         *         *         *         *         *
       And they are gone: ay, ages long ago
       These lovers fled away into the storm.


St. Fabian

Large Dead Nettle. Larnium garganicum.



The sun enters Aquarius on this day, though he does not enter it in the visible zodiac until the 18th of February.

Ganymede, who succeeded Hebe as cup-bearer to Jove, is fabled to have been changed into Aquarius. Canobus of the Egyptian zodiac, who was the Neptune of the Egyptians, with a water-vase and measure, evidently prefigured this constellation. They worshipped him as the God of many breasts, from whence he replenished the Nile with fertilizing streams. Aquarius contains one hundred and eight stars, the two chief of which are about fifteen degrees in height:

His head, his shoulders, and his lucid breast,
Glisten with stars; and when his urn inclines,
Rivers of light brighten the watery track.


January 21.

St. Agnes. St Fructuosus, &c. St. Vimin, or Vivian. St. Publius. St. Epiphanius.

St. Agnes.

"She has always been looked upon," says Butler, "as a special patroness of purity, with the immaculate mother of God." According to him, she suffered martyrdom, about 304, and performed wonderful miracles before her death, which was by beheading, when she was thirteen years old; whereupon he enjoins females to a single life, as better than a married one, and says, that her anniversary "was formerly a holiday for the women in England." Ribadeneira relates, that she was to have been burned, and was put into the fire for that purpose, but the flames, refusing to touch her, divided on each side, burnt some of the bystanders, and then quenched, as if there had been none made: a compassionate quality in fire, of which iron was not sensible, for her head was cut off at a single blow[.] Her legend further relates, that eight days after her death she came to her parents arrayed in white, attended by virgins with garlands of pearls, and a lamb whiter than snow; she is therefore usually represented by artists with a lamb by her side; though not, as Mr. Brand incautiously says, "in every graphic representation." It is further related that a priest who officiated in a church dedicated to St. Agnes, was very desirous of being married. He prayed the pope's license, who gave it him, together with an emerald ring, and commanded him to pay his addresses to the image of St. Agnes in his own church. The the priest did so, and the image put forth her finger, and he put the ring thereon; whereupon the image drew her finger again, and kept the ring fast, and the priest was contented to remain a ba chelor; "and yet, as it is sayd, the rynge is on the fynger of the ymage."

In a Romish Missal printed at Paris, in 1520, there is a prayer to St. Agnes, remarkably presumptive of her powers; it is thus englished by Bp. Patrick:

Agnes, who art the Lamb's chaste spouse,
     Enlighten thou our minds within;
Not only lop the spreading boughs,
     But root out of us every sin.

O, Lady, singularly great,
     After this state, with grief opprest
Translate us to that quiet seat
     Above, to triumph with the blest.

From Naogeorgus, we gather that in St. Agnes' church at Rome, it was customary on St. Agnes' Day to bring two snow-white lambs to the altar, upon which they were laid while the Agnes was singing by way of offering. These con secrated animals were afterwards shorn, and palls made from their fleeces; for each of which, it is said, the pope exacted of the bishops from eight to ten, or thirty thousand crowns, and that the custom originated with Limes, who succeeded the apostle Peter: whereupon Naogeorgus inquires,

But where was Agnes at that time? who offred [sic] up, and how,
The two white lambes? where then was Masse, as it is used now?
Yea, where was then the Popish state, and dreadful monarchee?
Sure in Saint Austen's time, there were no palles at Rome to see, &c.

In Jephson's "Manners, &c. of France and Italy," there is one dated from Rome, February, 14, 1793. That this ceremony was then in use, is evident from the following lines:—

St. Agnes' Shrine.

Where each pretty Ba-lamb most gaily appears,
With ribands stuck round on its tail and its ears;
On gold fringed cushions they're stretch'd out to eat,
And piously ba, and to church-musick bleat;
Yet to me they seem'd crying, alack, and alas!
What's all this white damask to daisies and grass?
Then they're brought to the Pope, and with transport they're kiss'd,
And receive consecration from Sanctity's fist.

Blessing of Sheep.

Stopford, in "pagano-Papismus," recites this ceremony of the Romish church. The sheep were brought into the church, and the priest, having blessed some salt and water, read in one corner this gospel, "To us a child is born," &c. with the whole office, a farthing being laid upon the book, and taken up again; in the second corner he read this gospel, "Ye men of Galilee," &c. with the whole office, a farthing being laid upon the book, and taken up again; in the third corner he read this gospel, "I am the good shepherd," &c. with the whole office, a farthing being laid upon the book, and taken up again; and in the fourth corner he read this gospel, "In these days," &c. with the whole office, a farthing being laid upon the book, and taken up again. After that, he sprinkled all the sheep with holy water, saying, "Let the blessing of God, the Father Almighty, descend and remain upon you; in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen." Then he signed all the sheep with the sign of the cross, repeated thrice some Latin verses, with the Paternoster and Ave-Marias, sung the mass of the Holy Ghost, and at the conclusion, an offering of fourpence was for himself, and another of threepence was for the poor. This ceremony was adopted by the Romish church from certain customs of the ancient Romans, in their worship of Pales, the goddess of sheepfolds and pastures. They prayed her to bless the sheep, and sprinkled them with water. The chief difference between the forms seems to have consisted in this, that the ancient Romans let the sheep remain in their folds, while the moderns drove them into the church.


St. Agnes.

Christmas Rose. Helleborus niger flore albo.


          Dainty young thing
Of life!—Thou vent'rous flower,
Who growest through the hard, cold bower
          Of wintry Spring:—
          Thou various-hued,
Soft, voiceless bell, whose spire
Rocks in the grassy leaves like wire
          In solitude:—
           Like Patience, thou
Art quiet in thy earth,
Instructing Hope that Virtue's birth
          Is Feeling's vow.
          Thy fancied bride!
The delicate Snowdrop, keeps
Her home with thee; she wakes and sleeps
          Near thy true side.
          Will Man but hear!
A simple flower can tell
What beauties in his mind should dwell
          Through Passion's sphere.

J. R. Prior.


1793. On the 21st of January, Louis XVI. was beheaded at Paris, in the thirty-ninth year of his age, and nineteenth of his reign, under circumstances which are in the recollection of many, and known to most persons. A similar instrument to the guillotine, the machine by which Louis XVI. was put to death, was formerly used in England. It was first introduced into France, during the revolution, by Dr. Guillotine, a physician, and hence its name.


The History of Halifax in Yorkshire, 12mo. 1712, sets forth "a true account of their ancient, odd, customary gibbet-law; and their particular form of trying and executing of criminals, the like not us'd in any other place in Great Britain." The Halifax gibbet was in the form of the guillotine, and its gibbet-law quite as remarkable. The work referred to, which is more curious than rare, painfully endeavours to prove this law wise and salutary. It prevailed only within the forest of Hardwick, which was subject to the lord of the manor of Wakefield, a part of the duchy of Lancaster. If a felon were taken within the liberty of the forest with cloth, or other commodity, of the value of thirteen-pence halfpenny, he was, after three market-days from his apprehension and condemnation, to be carried to the gibbet, and there have his head cut off from his body. When first taken, he was brought to the lord's bailiff in Halifax, who kept the town, had also the keeping of the axe, and was the executioner at the gibbet. This officer summoned a jury of frith-burghers to try him on the evidence of witnesses not upon oath: if acquitted, he was set at liberty, upon pay ment of his fees; if convicted, he was set in the stocks on each of the three subsequent market-days in Halifax, with the stolen goods on his back, if they were portable; if not, they were placed before his face. This was for a terror to others, and to engage any who had aught against him, to bring accusations, although after the three market-days he was sure to be executed for the offence already proved upon him. But the convict had the satisfaction of knowing, that after he was put to death, it was the duty of the coroner to summon a jury, "and sometimes the same jury that condemned him," to inquire into the cause of his death, and that a return thereof would be made into the Crown-office; "which gracious and sage proceedings of the coroner in that matter ought, one would think, to abate, in all considering minds, that edge of acrimony which hath provoked malicious and prejudiced persons to debase this laudable and necessary custom." So says the book.

The execution was in this manner:—The prisoner being brought to the scaffold by the bailiff, the axe was drawn up by a pulley, and fastened with a pin ot the side of the scaffold. "The bailiff, the jurors, and the minister chosen by the prisoner, being always upon the scaffold with the prisoner, in most solemn manner, after the minister had finished his ministerial office and christian duty, if it was a horse, and ox, or cow, &c. that was taken with the prisoner, it was thither brought along with him to the place of execution and fastened by a cord to the pin that stay'd the block, so that when the time of the execution came, (which was known by the jurors holding up one of their hands,) the bailiff, or his servant, whipping the beast, the pin was pluck'd out, and execution done; but if there were no beast in the case, then the bailiff, or his servant, cut the rope."

The Halifax Gibbet.

But if the felon, after his apprehension, or in his going to execution, happened to make his escape out of the forest of Hardwick, which liberty, on the east end of the town, doth not extend above the breadth of a small river; on the north about six hundred paces; on the south about a mile; but on the west about ten miles;—if such an escape were made, then the bailiff of Halifax had no power to apprehend him out of his liberty; but if ever the felon came again into the liberty of Hardwick, and were taken, he was certainly executed. One Lacy, who made his escape, and lived seven years out of the liberty, after that time coming boldly within the liberty of Hardwick, was retaken, and executed upon his former verdict of condemnation.

The records of executions by the Halifax gibbet, before the time of Elizabeth, are lost; but during her reign twenty-five persons suffered under it, and from 1623 to 1650 there were twelve executions. The machine is destroyed. The engraving placed above, represents the instrument, from a figure of it in an old map of Yorkshire, which is altogether better than the print of it in the work before cited.

The worthy author of the Halifax gibbet-book seems by his title to be well assured, that the machine was limited to, and to the sole use and behoof of, his district; but in this, as in some other particulars, he is mistaken.

A small print by Aldegraver, one of the little German masters, in 1553, now lying before the writer, represents the execution of Manlius, the Roman, by the same instrument; and he has a similar print by Pens, an early engraver of that school. There are engravings of it in books printed so early as 1510. In Hollinshed's Chronicle there is a cut of a man who had attempted the life of Henry III. suffering by this instrument. In Fox's "Acts and Monuments," there is another execution in the same manner.

The "maiden" by which James, earl of Morton, the regent of Scotland, was put to death for high treason in 1581, was of this form, and is said to have been constructed by his order from a model of one that he had seen in England: he was the first and last person who suffered by it in Scotland; and it still exists in the parliament-house at Edinburgh. In "The Cloud of Witnesses; of the last Speeches of Scottish Martyrs since 1680," there is a print of an execution in Scotland by a similar instrument. The construction of such a machine was in contemplation for the beheading of lord Lovat in 1747: he approved the notion—"My neck is very short," he said, "and the executioner will be puzzled to find it out with his axe: if they make the machine, I suppose they will call it lord Lovat's maiden."

Randle Holme in his "Armory" describes an heraldic quartering thus:—"He beareth gules, a heading-block fixed between two supporters, with an axe placed therein; on the sinister side a maule, all proper." This agreeable bearing he figures as the reader sees it.

Holme observes, that "this was the Jews' and Romans' way of beheading offenders, as some write, though others say they used to cut off the heads of such, with a sharp, two-handled sword: however, this way of decollation was by laying the neck of the malefactor on the block, and then setting the axe upon it, which lay in a rigget in the two side-posts; the executioner with the violence of a blow on the head of the axe, with his heavy maul, forced it through the man's neck into the block. I have seen the draught of the like heading-instrument, where the weighty axe (made heavy for that purpose) was raised up and fell down in such a riggetted frame, which being suddenly let to fall, the weight of it was sufficient to cut off a man's head at one blow."


Remarkable instances of the mildness of January, 1825, are recorded in the provincial and London journals. In the first week a man planting a hedge near Mansfield, in Yorkshire, found a blackbird's nest with four young ones in it. The Westmoreland Gazette states, that on the 13th a fine ripe strawberry was gathered in the garden of Mr. W. Whitehead, Storth End, near End-Moor, and about the same time a present of the same fruit ws made by Thomas Wilson, Esq. Thorns, Underbarrow, to Mr. Alderman Smith Wilson, some of them larger in bulk than the common hazel-nut. Indeed the forwardness of the season in the north appears wonderful. It is stated in the Glasgow Chronicle of the 11th, that on the 7th, bees were flying about in the garden of Rose-mount; on the 9th, the sky was without a cloud; there was scarcely a breath of wind, the blackbirds were singing as if welcoming the spring; pastures wore a fine, fresh, and healthy appearance; the wheat-braird was strong, thick in the ground, and nearly covering the soil; vegetation going on in the gardens; the usual spring flowers making their appearance; the Christmas rose, the snow-drop, the polyanthea, the single or border anemone, the hepatica in its varieties, and the mazerion were in full bloom; the Narcissus making its appearance, and the crocusses showing colour. On the 11th, at six o'clock, the thermometer in Nelson-street, Glasgow, indicated 44 degrees; on the 9th, the barometer gained the extraordinary height of 31.01; on the 11th, it was at 30.8. The Sheffield Mercury represents, that within six or seven weeks preceding the middle of the month, the barometer had been lower and higher than had been remarked by any living individual in that town. On the 23rd of November it was so low as 27.5; and on the 9th of January at 11 P. M. it stood at 30.65. In the same place the following meteorological observations were made:

JANUARY, 1825.



11th . . . . . 42 . . . . . 38
12th . . . . . 43 . . . . . 37
13th . . . . . 44 . . . . . 40
14th . . . . . 44 . . . . . 43



11th . . . . . 30.4 . . . . 30.3
12th . . . . . 30.3 . . . . 30.2
13th . . . . . 30.5 . . . . 29.9
14th . . . . . 29.5 . . . . 29.7

At Paris, in the latter end of 1824, the barometer was exceedingly high, considering the bad weather that had prevailed, and the moisture of the atmosphere. There had been almost constant and incessant rain. The few intervals of fair weather, were when the wind got round a few points to the west, or the northward of west: but invariably, a few hours after, the wind again got to the southwest, and the rain commenced falling. It appeared as if a revolution had taken place in the laws of the barometer. The barometer in London was at 30.48 in May, 1824, and never rose higher during the whole year.


January 22.

St. Vincent. St. Anastasius.

St. Vincent was a Spanish martyr, said to have been tormented by fire, so that he died in 304. His name is in the church of England calendar. Butler affirms that his body was "thrown in a marshy field among rushes, but a crow defended it from wild beasts and birds of prey." The Golden Legend says that angels had the guardianship of the body, that the crow attended to drive away birds and fowls greater than himself, and that after he had chased a wolf with his bill and beak, he then turned his head towards the body, as if he marvelled at the keeping of it by the angels. His relics necessarily worked miracles wherever they were kept. For their collection, separation, and how they travelled from place to place, see Butler.

Brand, from a MS. note by Mr. Douce, referring to Scot's "Discoverie of Witchcraft," cites an old injunction to observe whether the sun shines on St. Vincent's-day:

"Vincenti festo si Sol radiet memor este."

It is thus done into English by Abraham Fleming:

Remember on St. Vincent's day
If that the sun his beams display.

Dr. Forster, in the "Perennial Calendar," is at a loss for the origin of the command, but he thinks it may have been derived from a notion that the sun would not shine unominously on the day whereon the saint was burnt.


1800.—On the 22nd of January, in this year, died George Steevens, Esq. F. R. S. F. A. S. He was born at Stepney, in 1751 or 1752, and is best known as the editor of Shakspeare, though to the versatility and richness of his talents there are numerous testimonials. He maintained the greatest perseverance in every thing he undertook. He never relaxed, but sometimes broke off favourite habits of long indulgence suddenly. In this way he discontinued his daily visits to two booksellers. This, says his biographer in the Gentleman's Magazine, he did "after many years' regular attendance, for no real cause." It is submitted, however, that the cause, though unknown to others may have been every way sufficing and praiseworthy. He who has commenced a practice that has grown into a destroyer of his time and desires to end it, must snap it in an instant. If he strive to abate it by degrees, he will find himself relaxing by degrees.

"Delusions strong as hell will bind him fast," unless he achieve, not the determination to destroy, but the act of destruction. The will and the power are two. Steevens knew this, and though he had taken snuff all his life, he never took one pinch after he lost his box in St. Paul's church-yard. Had he taken one he might have taken one more, and then only another, and afterwards only a little bit in a paper, and then, he would have died as he lived—a snuff-taker. No; Steevens appears to have discovered the grand secret, that a man's self is the great enemy of himself, and hence his intolerance of self-indulgence even in degree.

His literary collections were remarkably curious, and as regards the days that are gone, of great value.


St. Vincent.

Early Witlow grass. Draba verna.


January 23.


St. Raymund of Pennafort, A.D. 1275. St. John the Almoner, A.D. 619. St. Emerentia, A.D. 304. St. Clement of Ancyra. St. Agathangelus. St. Ildefonsus A.D. 667. St. Eusebius, Abbot.

This being the first day of term, the judges of the different courts at Westminster, take their seats in Westminster-hall to commence business.

The engraving represents the interior of the hall at the time when the print from whence it is taken was engraved by C. Mosley. The drawing was by Gravelot, who died in 1773.

Westminster Hall, with its Shops

The shops within the hall are remarkably curious from their situation, and indeed the courts themselves are no less worthy of observation. It will be recollected that the court of Chancery and the court of King's Bench, at the upper end were, until the coronation, enclosed from sight and hearing; in the print they are open. This is the print alluded to in the volume on "Ancient Mysteries," p. 266, wherein is cited Ned Ward's remarks respecting the sempstresses, by whom some of these shops were occupied.

It is of ancient custom on the first day of term for the judges to breakfast with the lord chancellor in Lincoln's-inn-hall, and proceed with him in their respective carriages to Westminster-hall. Being arrived at the hall door in Palace-yard, and having alighted with their officers and train bearers, they formed a procession along the hall until they came opposite to the court of Common Pleas, before which stood the serjeants at law, who had previously arranged themselves in their full dress wigs and gowns, and awaited the coming of the judges, who were also in their full dress. Then the serjeants all bowed, and their obeisance being acknowledged by the judges in like manner, the lord chancellor, being first, approached the first serjeant in the rank, and shook hands with him, saying, "How d'ye do, brother? I wish you a good term;" whereupon the serjeant bowed and thanked his lordship, and the chancellor bowing to him, the serjeant again bowed; and the chancellor saluted and shook hands with the serjeant in like manner, and so he did with each serjeant present, and then proceeded with his officers to his court. The lord chief justice of England and each of the puisne judges of the court of King's Bench, saluting and shaking hands with each serjeant in the same manner, followed the chancellor and went into their court. In the same manner also did the chief justice and the puisne judges of the court of Common Pleas, and entered their court at the back of the serjeants. Lastly, the lord chief baron and the puisne barons of the Exchequer, having also so saluted the serjeants, returned back and entered the court of Exchequer, which is at the right hand immediately on entering the hall; the entrance to the court of Common Pleas being about midway on the same side of the hall, whither, on the barons having retired, the serjeants withdrew to commence business before the judges. The site of the court of Chancery is on the same side up the steps at the end of the hall, and that of the court of King's Bench level with it on the left-hand side. It is to be noted, that one judge does not salute the serjeants before the rest of the judges begin to salute them, but each follows the other. Thus whilst the chancellor is saluting the second serjeant the lord chief justice salutes the first, and he salutes the second while the chancellor salutes the third, the next judge of the King's Bench court saluting the first serjeant; and so the judges proceed successively, and close to each other, till all the serjeants have been saluted. It is further observable, that more extended greetings sometimes pass between the judges and serjeants who are intimate.

In 1825, the 23d of January, whereon Hilary term commences, happening on a Sunday, which is a dies non, or no day in law, the courts were opened on the 24th, when the judges refreshed themselves in Lincoln's-inn-hall with the lord chancellor, as usual, and departed at half-past twelve o'clock. On retiring, sir Charles Abbot, as lord chief justice took precedence of lord Gifford, the master of the rolls, though he ranks as a baron of the realm, and is deputy speaker of the house of lords. The court of Chancery in Westminster-hall being under reparation, the chancellor remained in Lincoln's-inn to keep his term there. For the same reason, the serjeants did not range themselves in the hall at Westminster, but awaited the arrival of the judges of the Common Pleas in their own court; the carriages of the judges of the King's Bench turned to the right at the top of Parliament-street, and proceeded to the new Sessions' house, where the judges sit until the new court of King's Bench in Westminster-hall shall be prepared.

It is further to be remarked, that the Side Bar in Westminster-hall stood, till very lately, within a short space of the wall, and at a few feet on the Palace-yard side of the court of Common Pleas' steps. Formerly, attorneys stood within this bar every morning during term, and moved the judges for the common rules, called side-bar rules, as they passed to their courts, and by whom they were granted them as of course. These motions have been long discontinued; the rules are applied for and obtained at the rule-office as rules of course; but each rule still ex presses that it has been granted upon a "side-bar" motion.

To recur to the engraving, which exhibits Westminster-hall at no distant period, in a state very dissimilar to its more late appearance. The original print by Mosley bears the following versified inscription:

When fools fall out, for ev'ry flaw,
They run horn mad to go to law,
A hedge awry, a wrong plac'd gate,
Will serve to spend a whole estate,
Your case the lawyer says is good,
And justice cannot be withstood;
By tedious process from above
From office they to office move;
Thro' pleas, demurrers, the dev'l and all,
At length they bring it to the hall;
The dreadful hall by Rufus rais'd,
For lofty Gothick arches prais'd.

The FIRST OF TERM, the fatal day,
Doth various images convey;
First from the courts with clam'rous bawl
The criers their attorneys call;
One of the gown, discreet and wise,
By proper means his witness tries;
From Wreathock's gang—not right or laws
H'assures his trembling client's cause;
This gnaws his handkerchief, whilst that
Gives the kind ogling nymph his hat;
Here one in love with choiristers
Minds singing more than law affairs.
A serjeant limping on behind
Shews justice lame, as well as blind.
To gain new clients some dispute,
Others protract an ancient suit,
Jargon and noise alone prevail,
While sense and reason's sure to fail;
At Babel thus law terms began,
And now at Westm——er go on.

The advocate, whose subornation of perjury is hinted at, is in the foremost group; he is offering money to one of "Wreathock's gang." The Wreathock was a villainous attorney, who received sentence of death for his criminal practices, and was ordered to be transported for life in 1736. It is a notorious fact, that many years ago wretches sold themselves to give any evidence, upon oath, that might be required; and some of these openly walked Westminster-hall with a straw in the shoe to signify that they wanted employment as witnesses; such was one of the customs of the "good old times," which some of regret we were not born in. The "choirister" in a surplice, bearing a torch, was probably one of the choir belonging to Westminster-abbey. To his right hand is the "limping serjeant" with a stick; his serjeantship being denoted by the coif, or cap, he wears; the coif is now diminished into a small circular piece of black silk at the top of the wig, instead of the cap represented in the engraving. The first shop, on the left, is occupied by a bookseller; the next by a mathematical instrument maker; then there is another bookseller; beyond him a dealer in articles of female consumption; beyond her a bookseller again; and, last on that side, a second female shopkeeper. Opposite to her, on the right of the hall, stands a clock, with the hands signifying it to be about one in the afternoon; the first shop, next from the clock, is a booksellers; then comes a female, who is a map and printseller; and, lastly, the girl who receives the barrister's hat into her care and whose line appears to sustain the "turnovers" worn by the beaus of those days with "ruffles," which, according to Ned Ward, the sempstresses of Westminster-hall nicely "pleated," to the satisfaction of the "young students" learned in the law.

Enough has, probably, been said of the engraving, to obtain regard to it as an object worth notice.

The first day of term is occupied, in the common law courts, by the examination of bail for persons who have been arrested, and whose opponents will not consent to the bail justifying before a judge at his chambers. A versified exemplification of this proceeding in the court of King's Bench, was written when lord Mansfield was chief, and Mr. Willes a justice of the court; a person named Hewitt was then cryer, Mr. Mingay, a celebrated counsel, still remembered, is represented as opposing the bail proposed by Mr. Baldwin, another counsel:


      Baldwin. Hewitt, call Taylor s [sic] bail,—for I
Shall now proceed to justify.
      Hewitt. Where's Taylor's bail?
      1st Bail.————I can't get in.
      Hewitt. Make way.
      Lord Mansfield.———For heaven's sake begin.
      Hewitt. But where's the other?
      2d Bail.—————Here I stand.
      Mingay. I must except to both. —Command
Silence, —and if your lordship crave it,
Austen shall read our affidavit.
      Austen. Will. Priddle, late of Fleet-street, gent.
Makes oath and saith, that late he went
To Duke's-place, as he was directed
By notice, and he there expected
To find both bail—but none could tell
Where the first bail lived—
      Mingay. ————Very well.
      Austen. And this deponent further says,
That, asking who the second was,
He found he'd bankrupt been, and yet
Had ne'er obtained certificate.
When to his house deponent went,
He full four stories high was sent,
And found a lodging almost bare;
No furniture, but half a chair,
A table, bedstead, broken fiddle
And a bureau.
                                          (Signed) William Priddle.
Sworn at my chambers.
                                          Francis Buller.
      Mingay. No affidavit can be fuller.
Well, friend, you've heard this affidavit,
What do you say?
      2d Bail.———Sir, by your leave, it
Is all a lie.
      Mingay. Sir, have a care,
What is your trade?
      2d Bail. ——— A scavenger.
      Mingay. And, pray, sir, were you never found
      2d Bail. I'm worth a thousand pound.
      Mingay. A thousand pound, friend, boldly said—
In what consisting?
      2d Bail. ———Stock in trade.
      Mingay. And, pray, friend, tell me, —do you know
What sum you're bail for?
      2d Bail. ————— Truly no.
      Mingay. My lords, you hear,—no oaths have check'd him:
I hope your lordships will—
      Willes. ———— Reject him.
      Mingay. Well, friend, now tell me where you dwell.
      1st. Bail. Sir, I have liv'd in Clerkenwell
These ten years.
      Mingay. —— Half-a-guinea dead. (Aside.)
My lords, if you've the notice read,
It says Duke's-place. So I desire
A little further time t' inquire.
      Baldwin. Why. Mr. Mingay, all this vapour?
      Willes. Take till to morrow.
      Lord Mansfield. ———— Call the paper.

The preceding pleasantry came from the pen of the late John Baynes, Esq. a Yorkshire gentleman, who was born in April, 1758, educated for the law at Trinity college, Cambridge, obtained prizes for proficiency in philosophy and classical attainments, was admitted of Gray's-inn, practised in his profession, and would probably have risen to its first honours. Mr. Nichols says "his learning was extensive; his abilities great; his application unwearied; his integrity unimpeached. In religious principles he was an Unitarian Christian and Protestant; in political principles the friend of the civil liberties of mankind, and the genuine constitution of his country. He died August 4, 1787, and was buried on the 9th in Bunhill-fields' burying-ground, near to the grave of Dr. Jebb," his tutor at college: "the classical hand of Dr. Parr" commemorated him by an epitaph.

One of the best papers in Mr. Knight's late "Quarterly Magazine," of good articles, is so suitable to this day, legally considered, that any one sufficiently interested to sympathize with "the cares and the fears" of a young lawyer, or, indeed, any one who dares to admit that a lawyer may have bowels, as well as an appetite, will suffer the Confessions of a Barrister to be recorded here.


"A lawyer," says an old comedy which I once read at the British Museum, "is an odd sort of fruit—first rotten—then green—and then ripe." There is too much of truth in the homely figure. The first years of a young barrister are spent, or rather worn out, in anxious leisure. His talents rust, his temper is injured, his little patrimony wastes away, and not an attorney shows a sign of remorse. He endures term after term, and circuit after circuit, that greatest of all evils—a rank above his means of supporting it. He drives round the country in a post-chaise, and marvels what Johnson found so exhilarating in its motion—that is, if he paid for it himself. He eats venison, and drinks claret; but he loses the flavour of both when he reflects that his wife (for the fool is married, and married for love too!) has perhaps just dined for the third time on a cold neck of mutton, and has not tasted wine since their last party—an occurence beyond even legal memory. He leaves the festive board early, and takes a solitary walk—returns to his lodgings in the twilight, and sees on his table a large white rectangular body, which for a moment he supposes may be a brief—alas! it is only a napkin. He is vexed, and rings to have it removed, when up comes his clerk, who is drunk and insolent: he is about to kick him down stairs, but stays his foot on recollecting the arrears of the fellow's wages; and contents himself with wondering where the fellow finds the means of such extravagance.—Then in court many are the vexations of the briefless.—The attorney is a cruel person to them—as cruel as a rich coxcomb in a ball-room, who delights in exciting hopes only to disappoint them. Indeed I have often thought the communications between the solicitors and the bar have no slight resemblance to the flirtation between the sexes. Barristers, like ladies, must wait to be chosen. The slightest overture would be equally fatal to one gown as the other. The gentlemen of the bar sit round the table in dignified composure, thinking just as little of briefs as a young lady of marriage. An attorney enters—not an eye moves; but somehow or other, the fact is known to all. Calmly he draws from his pocket a brief: practice enables us to see at a glance that the tormentor has left a blank for the name of his counsel. He looks around the circle as if to choose his man; you cannot doubt but his eye rests on you; he writes a name, but you are too far off to read it, though you know every name on your circuit upside down. Now he counts out the fee, and wraps it up with slow and provoking formality. At length all being prepared, he looks towards you to catch (as you suppose) your eye. You nod, and the brief comes flying; you pick it up, and find on it the name of a man three years your junior, who is sitting next you: you curse the attorney's impudence, and ask yourself if he meant to insult you.—"Perhaps not," you say, "for the dog squints."— I received my maiden brief in London. How well do I recollect the minutest circumstances connected with that case! The rap at the door! I am a connoisseur in raps—there is not a dun in London who could deceive me: I know their tricks but too well; they have no medium between the rap servile, and the rap impudent. This was a cheerful touch; you felt that the operator knew he should meet a face of welcome. My clerk, who is not much under the influence of sweet sounds, seemed absolutely inspired, and answered the knock with astonishing velocity. I could hear from my inner room the murmur of inquiry and answer; and though I could not distinguish a word, the tones confirmed my hopes; —I was not long suffered to doubt—my client entered, and the roll of pure white paper tied round with the brilliant red tape, met my eye. He inquired respectfully, and with an appearance of anxiety, which marked him to my mind for a perfect Chesterfield, if I was already retained in ——— v.———? The rogue knew well enough that I had never had a retainer in my life. I took a moment to consider; after making him repeat the name of his case, I gravely assured him I was a perfect liberty to receive his brief. He then laid the papers and my fee upon the table; asked me if the time appointed for a consultation with the two gentlemen who were "with me" would be convenient; and finding that the state of my engagements would allow me to attend, made his bow and departed. That fee was sacred, and I put it to no vulgar use. Many years have now elapsed since that case was disposed of, and yet how fresh does it live in my memory! how perfectly do I recollect every authority to which he referred! how I read and re-read the leading cases that bore upon the question to be argued! One case I so bethumbed that the volume has opened at it ever since, as inevitably as the prayer-book of a lady's maid proffers the service of matrimony. My brief related to an argument before the judges of the King's Bench, and the place of consultation was Ayles's coffee-house, adjoining Westminster-hall. There was I before the clock had finished striking the hour; my brief I knew by heart. I had raised an army of objections to the points for which we were to contend, and had logically slain every one of them. I went prepared to discuss the question thoroughly; and I generously determined to give my leaders the benefit of my cogitations—though not without a slight struggle at the thought of how much reputation I should lose by my magnanimity. I had plenty of time to think of these things, for my leaders were engaged in court, and the attorney and I had the room to ourselves. After we had been waiting about an hour, the door flew open, and in strode one of my leaders, the second in command, less in haste (as it appeared to me) to meet his appointment, than to escape from the atmosphere of clients in which he had been just enveloped, during his passage from the court.— Having shaken off his termentors, Mr. —— walked up to the fire—said it was cold—nodded kindly to me—and had just asked what had been the last night's division in the house—when the powdered head of an usher was protruded through the half open door to announce that "Jones and Williams was called on." Down went the poker, and away flew ——— with streaming robes, leaving me to meditate on the loss which the case would sustain for want of his assistance at the expected discussion. Having waited some further space, I heard a rustling of silks, and the great ———, or commander in chief, sailed into the room. As he did not run foul of me, I think it possible I may not have been invisible to him; but he furnished me with no other evidence of the fact. He simply directed the attorney to provide certain additional affidavits, tacked about and sailed away. And thus ended the first consultation. I consoled myself with the thought that I had all my materials for myself, and that from having had so much more time for considering the subject than the others, I must infallibly make the best speech of the three. At length the fatal day came. I never shall forget the thrill with which I heard ——— open the case, and felt how soon it would be my turn to speak. O, how I did pray for a long speech! I lost all feeling of rivalry; and would gladly have given him every thing that I intended to use myself, only to defer the dreaded moment for one half-hour. His speech was frightfully short, yet, short as it was, it made sad havoc with my stock of matter. The next speaker's was even more concise, and yet my little stock suffered again severely. I then found how experience will stand in the place of study. These men could not, from the multiplicity of their engagements, have spent a tithe of the time upon the case which I had done: and yet they had seen much which had escaped my research. At length my turn came. I was sitting among the back rows in the old court of King's Bench. It was on the first day of Michaelmas term, and late in the evening. A sort of "darkness visible" had been produced by the aid of a few candles dispersed here and there. I arose, but I was not perceived by the judges, who had turned together to consult, supposing the argument finished. B——— was the first to see me, and I received from him a nod of kindness and encouragement which I hope I shall never forget. The court was crowded, for it was a question of some interest; it was a dreadful moment—the ushers stilled the audience into awful silence. I began, and at the sound of an unknown voice, every wig of the white inclined plane, at the upper end of which I was standing, turned round; and in an instant I had the eyes of seventy "learned friends" looking me full in the face! It is hardly to be conceived by those who have not gone through the ordeal, how terrific is this mute attention to the object of it. How grateful should I have been for any thing which would have relieved me from its oppressive weight—a buzz, a scraping of the shoes, or a fit of coughing, would have put me under infinite obligations to the kind disturber. What I said I know not; I knew not then; it is the only part of the transaction of which I am ignorant; it was a "phantasma, or hideous dream." They told me, however, to my great surprise, that I spoke in a loud voice; used violent gesture, and as I went along seemed to shake off my trepidation. Whether I made a long speech or a short one I cannot tell; for I had no power of measuring time. All I know is, that I should have made a much longer one, had I not felt my ideas, like Bob Acre's courage, oozing out of my fingers' ends. The court decided against us, erroneously as I of course thought, for the young advocate is always on the right side. The next morning I got up early to look at the newspapers, which I expected to see full of our case. In an obscure corner, and in a small type, I found a few words given as the speeches of my leaders: and I also read that "Mr. ——— followed on the same side."


It is affirmed of sir William Blackstone, that so often as he sat down to the composition of his Commentaries on the Laws of England, he always ordered a bottle of wine wherewith to moisten the dryness of his studies; and in proof that other professional men sometimes solace their cares by otherwise disporting themselves, there is a kind of catch, the words of which, having reference to their art or mystery, do so marvellously inspire them, that they chant it with more glee than gravity, to a right merry tune:—

A woman having settlement,
     Married a man with none;
The question was, he being dead
     If that she had was gone?

Quoth sir John Pratt, her settlement
     Suspended did remain,
Living the husband—but, him dead,
     It doth revive again.


Living the husband—but, him dead,
     It doth revive again.


Peziza. Peziza acetabulum.


January 24.

St Timothy, disciple of St. Paul. St. Babylas, A.D. 250. St. Suranus, 7th century. St. Macedonius. St. Cadoc, of Wales.


1721. On the 24th of January in this year, the two houses of parliament ordered several of the directors of the South Sea company into the custody of the usher of the black rod and serjeant at arms: this was in consequence of a parliamentary inquiry into the company's affairs, which had been so managed as to involve persons of all ranks throughout the kingdom in a scene of distress unparalleled by any similar circumstance in English annals.


In 1711, the ninth year of queen Anne's reign, a charter of incorporation was granted to a company trading to the South Seas; and the South Sea company's affairs appeared so prosperous, that, in 1718, king George I. being chosen governor, and a bill enabling him to accept the office having passed both houses, on the 3d of February, his majesty in person attended the house of lords, and gave the royal assent to the act. A brief history of the company's subsequent progress is interesting at any time, and more especially at a period when excess of speculation may endanger private happiness, and disturb the public welfare.

On the 27th of January, 1719, the South Sea company proposed a scheme to parliament for paying off the national debt, by taking into its funds all the debt which the nation had incurred before the year 1716, whether redeemable or irredeemable, amounting in the whole to the sum of 31,664,551l. 1s. 1-1/4d. For this the company undertook to pay to the use of the public the sum of 4,156,306l.; besides four years and a half's purchase for all the annuities that should be subscribed into its fund, and which, if all subscribed, would have amounted to the sum of 3,567,501l.; amounting, with the above-mentioned sum, to 7,723,809l.: in case all the annuities were not subscribed, the company agreed to pay one per cent. for such unsubscribed annuities.

To this arrangement parliament acceded, and an act was passed to ratify this contract, and containing full powers to the company accordingly. In March following South Sea stock rose from 130 to 300, gradually advanced to 400, declined to 330, and on the 7th of April was at 340. This so encouraged the directors, that on the 12th they opened books at the South Sea house for taking in a subscription for a portion of their stock to the amount of 2,250,000l. every 100l. of which they offered at 300l.: it was immediately subscribed for at that price, to be paid for by nine instalments within twelve months. On the 21st, a general court of the company resolved, that the Midsummer dividend should be 10 per cent., and that the aforesaid subscription, and all other additions to their capital before that time, should be entitled to the said dividend. This gave so favourable a view to the speculation, that on the 28th the directors opened a second subscription for another million of stock, which was presently taken at 400l. for every 100l., and the subscribers had three years allowed them for payment. On the 20th of May, South Sea stock rose to 550. So amazing a price created a general infatuation. Even the more prudent, who had laughed at the folly and madness of others, were seized with the mania; they borrowed, mortgaged, and sold, to raise all the money they could, in order to hold the favourite stock; while a few quietly sold out and enriched themselves. Prodigious numbers of people resorted daily from all parts of the kingdom to 'Change-alley, where the assembled speculators, by their excessive noise and hurry, seemed like so many madmen just escaped from cells and chains. All thoughts of commerce were laid aside for the buy and selling of estates, and traffic in South Sea stock. Some, who had effected sales at high premiums, were willing to lay out the money on real property, which consequently advanced beyond its actual value: cautious land-owners justly concluded that this was the time to get money without risk, and there fore sold their property; shortly afterwards they had an opportunity of purchasing more, at less than half the price they had obtained for their own.

On the 2d of June, South Sea stock rose to 890. On the 15th, many persons who accompanied the king on his foreign journey, sold their stock, which suddenly fell; but the directors promising larger dividends, it got up higher than ever. On the 18th they opened books for a third subscription of four millions more stock, at 1000l. for each 100l., and before the end of the month it had advanced to 1100l., between which and 1000l. it fluctuated throughout the month of July. On the 3d of August they proposed to receive subscriptions for all the unsubscribed annuities, and opened books for the purpose during the ensuing week, upon terms which greatly dissatisfied the annuitants, who, confiding in the honour of the directors, had left their orders at the South Sea House, without any previous contract, not doubting but they should be allowed the same terms with the first subscribers. Finding, to their great surprise and disappointment, that, by the directors' arrangements, they were only to have about half what they expected, many repaired to the South Sea House to get their orders returned; but these being withheld, their incessant applications and reflections greatly affected the stock, insomuch that, on the 22d of the month, at the opening of the books, it fell to 820. The directors then came to the desperate resolution of ordering the books to be shut; and on the 24th they caused others to be opened for a fourth money subscription for another million of their stock, at 1000l. for each 100l., payable by five instalments within two years: this million was subscribed in less than three hours, and bore a premium the same afternoon of 40 per cent. On the 26th the stock, instead of advancing, fell below 830. The directors then thought fit to lend their proprietors 4,000l. upon every 1000l. stock, for six months, at 4 per cent.; but the annuitants becoming very clamorous and uneasy, the directors resolved that 30 per cent. in money should be the half-year's dividend due at the next Christmas, and that from thence, for twelve years, not less than 50 per cent. in money should be the yearly dividend on their stock. Though this resolution raised the stock to about 800 for the opening of the books, it soon sunk again.

On the 8th of September, the stock fell to 640, on the 9th to 550, and by the 19th it came to 400. On the 23d the Bank of England agreed with the South Sea company to circulate their bonds, &c. and to take their stock at 400 per cent., in lieu of 3,775,000l., which the company was to pay them. When the books were opened at the Bank for taking in a subscription for supporting the public credit, the concourse was at first so great, that it was judged the whole subscription, which was intended for 3,000,000l., would have been filled that day. But the fall of South Sea stock, and the discredit of the company's bonds, occasioned a run upon the most eminent goldsmiths and bankers, some of whom, having lent great sums upon the stock and other public securities, were obliged to shut up their shops. The Sword-blade company also, who had been hitherto the chief cash-keepers of the South Sea company, being almost drawn of their ready money, were forced to stop payment. All this occasioned a great run upon the Bank. On the 30th South Sea stock fell to 150, and then to 86.

"It is very surprising," says Maitland, "that this wicked scheme, of French Extraction, should have met with encouragement here, seeing that the Mississippi scheme had just before nearly ruined that nation. It is still more surprising, that the people of divers other countries, notwithstanding the direful effects of this destructive scheme before their eyes, yet, as it were, tainted with our frenzy, began to court their destruction, by setting on foot the like projects: which gives room to suspect," says Maitland, "that those destructive and fatal transactions were rather the result of an epidemical distemper, than that of choice; seeing that the wisest and best of men were the greatest sufferers; many of the nobility, and persons of the greatest distinction, were undone, and obliged to walk on foot; while others, who the year before could hardly purchase a dinner, were exalted in their coaches and fine equipages, and possessed of enormous estates. Such a scene of misery appeared among traders, that it was almost unfashionable not to be a bankrupt: and the dire catastrophe was attended with such a number of self-murders, as no age can parallel."

Hooke, the historian of Rome, was a severe sufferer by the South Sea bubble. He thus addresses lord Oxford, in a letter dated the 17th of October 1722: "I cannot be said at present to be in any form of life, but rather to live extempore. The late epidemical (South Sea) distemper seized me: I endeavoured to be rich, imagined for a while that I was, and am in some measure happy to find myself at this instant but just worth nothing. If your lordship, or any of your numerous friends, have need of a servant, with the bare qualifications of being able to read and write, and to be honest, I shall gladly undertake any employments your lordship shall not think me unworthy of."

In 1720, soon after the bursting of the South Sea bubble, a gentleman called late in the evening at the banking-house of Messrs. Hankey and Co. He was in a coach, but refused to get out, and desired that one of the partners of the house would come to him. Having ascertained that it was really one of the principals, and not a clerk, who appeared, he put into his hands a parcel, very carefully sealed up, and desired that it might be laid on one side till he should call again, which would be in the course of a few days. A few days passed away—a few weeks, a few months, but the stranger never returned. At the end of the second or third year, the partners agreed to open this mysterious parcel, in the presence of each other. They found it to contain 30,000l., with a letter, stating that it was obtained by the South Sea speculation, and directing that it should be vested in the hands of three trustees, whose names were mentioned, and the interest apportioned to the relief of the poor, which was accordingly done.

It has been calculated, that the rise on the original South-sea stock of ten millions, and the subsequent advance of the company's four subscriptions, inflated their capital to nearly three hundred millions. This unnatural procedure raised bank stock from 100l. to 260l. India, from 100l. to 405l. African, from 100l. to 200l. York-buildings' shares, from 10l. to 305l. Lustring, from 5l. 2s. 6d. to 105l. English copper, from 5l. to 105l. Welch copper, from 4l. 2s. 6d. to 95l. The Royal Assurance, from 5l. to 175l., to the great injury of the various purchasers at such prices.

The South Sea scheme terminated in the sudden downfal of the directors, whose estates were confiscated by parlia ment, and the proceeds applied to the relief of many thousands of families, who had been wholly ruined by the speculation. These dupes of overweening folly and misplaced confidence, were further benefited by a remission in their favour of the national claims on certain of the South Sea company's real assets. The extent of these donations to the sufferers amounted to 40l. per cent. upon the stock standing in their names.


One consequence of the prosperous appearance that the South Sea scheme bore, till within a short period before its failure, was a variety of equally promising and delusive projects. These were denominated bubbles. Alarmed at the destructive issue of the master-bubble, government issued the following manifesto: "The lords justices in council, taking into consideration the many inconveniences arising to the public, from several projects set on foot for raising of joint-stocks for various purposes; and that a great many of his majesty's subjects have been drawn in to part with their money, on pretence of assurances that their petitions, for patents and charters to enable them to carry on the same, would be granted: to prevent such impositions, their excellencies ordered the said several petitions, together with such reports from the Board of Trade, and from his majesty's attorney and solicitor general, as had been obtained thereon, to be laid before them; and, after mature consideration thereof, were pleased, by advice of his majesty's privy-council, to order that the said petitions be dismissed." The applications thus rejected prayed patents for various fisheries, for building ships to let or freight, for raising hemp, flax, and madder, for making of sail-cloth, for fire-assurances, for salt-works, for the making of snuff in Virginia, &.

In defence of this salutary order, the herd of projectors, with an audacity that passed on the credulous for well-grounded confidence, continued their nefarious traffic. Proclamations from the king, and even acts of parliament, were utterly disregarded; and companies which had been established by charter increased the evil, by imitating the South Sea company's fatal management, and taking in subscriptions. This occasioned the lords justices to issue another order, wherein they declared that, having been attended by Mr. attorney-general, they gave him express orders to bring writs of scire facias against the charters or patents of the York-building's company, Lustring company, English copper, Welsh copper, and lead, and also against other charters or patents which had been, or should be made use of, or acted under, contrary to the intent or meaning of an act passed the last session of parliament, &c.

They likewise instructed the attorney-general to prosecute, with the utmost severity, all persons opening books for public subscriptions; or receiving money upon such subscriptions; or making or accepting transfers of, or shares upon, such subscriptions; or which they gave public notice in the Gazette, as "a farther caution to prevent the drawing of unwary persons, for the future, into practices contrary to law." This effectually frustrated the plans of plunder, exercised or contemplated at that period. How necessary so vigorous a resistance was must be obvious from this fact, that innumerable bubbles perished in embryo; besides an incredible number which could be named that were actually set in motion, and to support which the sums intended to be raised amounted to about 300,000,000l. The lowest advance of the shares in any of these speculations was above cent. per cent., [sic] most of them above 400l. per cent.; and some were raised to twenty times the price of the subscription. Taking these circumstances into account, the scandalous projects would have required seven hundred millions sterling, if such a sum could have been realized in the shape of capital. To such a height of madness had the public mind been excited, that even shares were eagerly coveted, and bargained for, in shameless schemes which were not worth the paper whereon their proposals were printed, at treble the price they nominally bore. From a list of only a part of those that the air of 'Change-alley teemed with, the names of a few are here set forth:


For supplying London with cattle.
For supplying London with hay.
For breeding and feeding cattle.
For making pasteboards.
For improving the paper manufacture.
For dealing in lace, hollands, &c.
For a grand dispensary.
For a royal fishery.
For a fish pool.
For making glass-bottles.
For encouraging the breed of horses.
For discovering gold mines.
For an assurance against thieves.
For trading in hair.
For loan offices.
For dealing in hops.
For making of china ware.
For furnishing funerals.
For a coral fishery.
For a flying machine.
For insuring of horses.
For making of looking-glasses.
For feeding of hogs.
For buying and selling estates.
For purchasing and letting lands.
For supplying London with provisions[.]
For curing the gout and stone.
For making oil of poppies.
For bleaching coarse sugar.
For making of stockings.
For an air-pump for the brain.
For insurance against divorces.
For making butter from beech-trees.
For paving London streets.
For extracting silver from lead.
For making of radish oil.
For a perpetual motion.
For japanning of shoes.
For making deal boards of sawdust.
For a scheme to teach the casting of nativities.


The large surplus capital and consequent low rate of interest during the last, and in the present, year, induce its possessors to embark their money in schemes for promoting general utility. One of the advantages resulting from a state of peace is the influx of wealth that pours forth upon the country for its improvement. Yet it behoves the prudent, and those of small means, to be circumspect in their outlays; to see with their own eyes, and not through the medium of others. The premiums that shares in projects may bear in the market, are not even a shadow of criterion whereon to found a judgment for investment. This is well known to every discreet man who has an odd hundred to put out; and he who cannot rely on his own discrimination for a right selection from among the various schemes that are proffered to his choice, will do well to act as if none of them existed, and place his cash where the principal will at least be safe, and the interest, though small, be certain. This month presents schemes for

Twenty Rail Road Companies,
Twenty-two Banking, Loan, Investment, and Assurance Companies, Eleven Gas Companies,
Eight British and Irish Mine Companies,
Seventeen Foreign Mine Companies,
Nine Shipping and Dock Companies,
Twenty-seven Miscellaneous Companies,
A London Brick Company,
A Patent Brick Company,
A London Marine Bath Company,
A Royal National Bath Company,
A Great Westminster Mild Company,
A Metropolitan Water Company.[sic]
An Alderney Dairy Company,
A Metropolitan Alderney Dairy Company,
A South London Milk Company,
An East London Milk Company,
A Metropolitan Milk Company.

A correspondent in the "London Magazine" declares, that "if we named the several divisions of the year after the French revolutionary fashion, by the phenomena observable in them, we should, from our experience of January, 1825, call it Bubblose— it has been a month of most flagitious and flourishing knavery." He pleasantly assumes that Mr. Jeremiah Hot-the-twig, attorney at law, benevolently conceives the idea of directing "surplus capital" to the formation of "a joint stock company for the outfit of air-balloons, the purchase of herds of swine, and the other requisites for a flourishing lunar commerce; Capital One Million, divided into 10,000 shares of 100l. each." The method is then related of opening an account with a respectable banking-house, obtaining respectable directors, appointing his son-in-law the respectable secretary, the son of a respected director the respectable standing counsel, and the self-nomination of the respectable Mr. Jeremiah H. and Co. as the respectable solicitors. Afterwards come the means of raising the bubble, to the admiration of proper persons who pay a deposit of 5l. per share; who, when the shares "look down" try to sell, but there are "no buyers," the "quotations are nominal;" a second instalment called for, the holders hesitate; "their shares are forfeited;" the speculation is conse quently declared frustrated; and there being only 10,000 in the bankers' hands to pay "Mr. Hop-the-twig's bill of 10,073l. 13s. 4d. that respectable solicitor is defrauded of the sum of 73l. 13s. 4d. This is the rise and fall of a respectable bubble."

Undoubtedly, among these varius schemes afloat, some will be productive of great benefit to the country; but it is seriously to be considered whether the estimation of some of them in a money view be not too high, and forced to an undue price by the arts of jobbing:

Haste instantly and buy, cries one
Real Del Monte shares, for none
     Will hold a rich project;
Another cries— No mining plan
Like ours—the Anglo-Mexican
     As for Del Monte, scoff it.

This grasps my button, and declares
There's nothing like Columbian shares,
     The capital a million;—
That, cries La Plata's sure to pay;
Or bids me buy without delay
     Hibernian or Brazilian.

'Scaped from the torments of the mine,
Rivals in Gas, and endless line,
     Arrest me as I travel;
Each sure my suffrage to receive,
If I will only give him leave,
     His project to unravel.

By Fire and Life insurers next
I'm intercepted, pester'd, vex'd,
     Almost beyond endurance;
And though the schemes appear unsound,
Their advocates are seldom found
     Deficient in assurance.

Last I am worried, shares to buy
In the Canadian company,
     The Milk Association,
The Laundry-men who wash by stream,
Rail-ways, Pearl-fishing, or the scheme,
     For Inland Navigation.

New Monthly Mag.


Stalkless moss. Phascum muticum.


January 25.

Holiday at the Public Offices; except the Excise, Stamps, and Customs.

CONVERSION OF ST. PAUL. Sts. Juventinus and Maximinus, A.D. 363. St. Poppo, A.D. 1048. St. Apollo, A.D. 393. St. Publius, A.D. 369.

The Conversion of St. Paul.

This is a festival in the calendar of the church of England, as well as in that of the Romish church.

St. Paul's Day.

On this day prognostications of the months were drawn for the whole year. If fair and clear, there was to be plenty; if cloudy or misty, much cattle would die; if rain or snow fell then it presaged a dearth; and if windy, there would be wars:

If Saint Paul's Day be fair and clear. [sic]
It does betide a happy year;
But if it chance to snow or rain,
Then will be dear all kinds of grain:
If clouds or mists do dark the skie,
Great store of birds and beasts shall die;
And if the winds do fly aloft,
Then wars shall vex the kingdome oft.

Willsford's Nature's Secrets.

These prognostications are Englished from an ancient calendar: they have likewise been translated by Gay, who enjoins,

Let no such vulgar tales debase thy mind,
Nor Paul nor Swithin rule the clouds and wind.

The latter lines are allusive to the popular superstitions, regarding these days, which were before remarked by bishop Hall, who observes of a person under such influences, that "St. Paule's day, and St. Swithine's, with the twelve, are his oracles, which he dares believe against the almanacke." It will be recollected that "the twelve" are twelve days of Christmastide, mentioned on a preceding day as believed by the ignorant to denote the weather throughout the year.

Concerning this day, Bourne, says. "How it came to have this particular knack of foretelling the good or ill fortune of the following year is no easy matter to find out. The monks, who were undoubtedly the first who made this wonderful observation, have taken care it should be handed down to posterity; but why, or for what reason, they have taken care to conceal. St. Paul did indeed labour more abundantly than all the apostles; but never that I heard in the science of astrology: and why this day should therefore be a standing almanac to the world, rather than the day of any other saint, will be pretty hard to find out." In an ancient Romish calendar, much used by Brand, the vigil of St. Paul is called "Dies Ægypticus;" and he confesses his ignorance of any reason for calling it "an Egyptian-day." Mr. Fosbroke explains, from a passage in Ducange, that it was so called because there were two unlucky days in every month, and St. Paul's vigil was one of the two in January.

Dr. Forster notes, that the festival of the conversion of St. Paul has always been reckoned ominous of the future weather of the year, in various countries remote from each other.

According to Schenkus, cited by Brand, it was a custom in many parts of Germany, to drag the images of St. Paul and St. Urban to the river, if there was foul weather on their festival.


St. Paul's day being the first festival of an apostle in the year, it is an opportunity for alluding to the old, ancient, English custom, with sponsors, or visitors at christenings, of presenting spoons, called apostle-spoons, because the figures of the twelve apostles were chased, or carved on the tops of the handles. Brand cites several authors to testify of the practice. Persons who could afford it gave the set of twelve; others a smaller number, and a poor person offered the gift of one, with the figure of the saint after whom the child was named, or to whom the child was dedicated, or who was the patron saint of the good-natured donor.

Ben Jonson, in his Bartholomew Fair, has a character, saying, "And all this for the hope of a couple of apostle-spoons, and a cup to eat caudle in." In the Chaste Maid of Cheapside, by Middleton, "Gossip" inquires, "What has he given her? What is it, Gossip?" Whereto the answer of another "Gossip" is, "A fair high-standing cup, and two great 'postle-spoons—one of them gilt." Beaumont and Fletcher, likewise, in the Noble Gentleman, say:

"I'll be a Gossip. Bewford,
I have an odd apostle-spoon."

The rarity and antiquity of apostle-spoons render them of considerable value as curiosities. A complete set of twelve is represented in the sketch on the opposite page, from a set of the spoons themselves on the writer's table.

A Set of Apostle-Spoons.

The apostles on this set of spoons are somewhat worn, and the stems and bowls have been altered by the silversmith in conformity with the prevailing fashion of the present day; to the eye of the antiquary, therefore, they are not so interesting as they were before they underwent this partial modernization: yet in this state they are objects of regard. Their size in the print is exactly that of the spoons themselves, except that the stems are necessarily fore-shortened in the engraving to get them within the page. The stem of each spoon measures exactly three inches and a half in length from the foot of the apostle to the commencement of the bowl; the length of each bowl is two inches and nine-sixteenths of an inch; and the height of each apostle is one inch and one-sixteenth: the entire length of each spoon is seven inches and one-eighth of an inch. They are of silver; the lightest, which is St. Peter, weighs 1 oz. 5 dwts. 9 gr.; the heaviest is St. Bartholomew, and weighs 1 oz. 9 dwts. 16 gr. The hat, or flat covering, on the head of each figure, is usual to apostles-spoons, [sic] and was probably affixed to save the features from effacement. In a really fine state they are very rare.

It seems from "the Gossips," a poem by Shipman, in 1666, that the usage of giving apostle-spoons' [sic] at christenings, was at that time on the decline:

"Formerly, when they us'd to troul,
Gilt bowls of sack, they gave the bowl;
Two spoons at least; an use ill kept;
'Tis well if now our own be left."

An anecdote is related of Shakspeare and Ben Jonson, which bears upon the usage: Shakspeare was godfather to one of Jonson's children, and, after the christening, being in deep study, Jonson cheeringly asked him, why he was so melancholy? "Ben," said he, "I have been considering a great while what should be the fittest gift for me to bestow upon my godchild, and I have resolved it at last." "I prithee, what?" said Ben, "I' faith, Ben," answered Shakspeare, "I'll give him a dozen good latten spoons, and thou shalt translate them." The word latten, intended as a play upon latin, is the name for thin iron tinned, of which spoons, and similar small articles of household use, are sometimes made. Without being aware of the origin, it is still a custom with many persons, to present spoons at christ enings, or on visiting the "lady in the straw;" though they are not now adorned with imagery.


Winter hellebore. Helleborus hymenalis.


January 26.

St. Polycarp. St. Paula. St. Conan.


On winter comes—the cruel north
Pours his furious whirlwind forth
Before him—and we breathe the breath
Of famish'd bears, that howl to death:
Onward he comes from rocks that blanch
     O'er solid streams that never flow,
     His tears all ice, his locks all snow,
Just crept from some huge avalanche.              Incog.


M. M. M. a traveller in Russia, communicates through the Gentleman's Magazine of 1785, a remarkable method of cultivating bees, and preserving them from their housebreakers, the bears. The Russians of Borodskoe, on the banks of the river Ufa, deposit the hives within excavations that they form in the hardest, strongest, and loftiest trees of the forest, at about five-and-twenty or thirty feet high from the ground, and even higher, if the height of the trunk allows it. They hollow out the holes lengthways, with small narrow hatchets, and with chisels and gouges complete their work. The longitudinal aperture of the hive is stopped by a cover of two or more pieces exactly fitted to it, and pierced with small holes, to give ingress and egress to the bees. No means can be devised more ingenius or more convenient for climbing the highest and the smoothest trees than those practised by this people, for the construction and visitation of these hives. For this purpose they use nothing but a very sharp axe, a leathern strap, or a common rope. The man places himself against the trunk of the tree, and passes the cord round his body and round the tree, just leaving it sufficient play for casting it higher and higher, by jerks, towards the elevation he desires to attain, and there to place his body, bent as in a swing, his feet resting against the tree, and preserving the free use of his hands. This done, he takes his axe, and at about the height of his body makes the first notch or step in the tree; then he takes his rope, the two ends whereof he takes care to have tied very fast, and throws it towards the top of the trunk. Placed thus in his rope by the middle of his body, and resting his feet against the tree, he ascends by two steps, and easily enables himself to put one of his feet in the notch. He now makes a new step, and continues to mount in this manner till he has reached the intended height. He performs all this with incredible speed and agility. Being mounted to the place where he is to make the hive, he cuts more convenient steps, and, by the help of the rope, which his body keeps in distension, he performs his necessary work with the above-mentioned tools, which are stuck in his girdle. He also carefully cuts away all boughs and protuberances beneath the hive, to render access as difficult as possible to the bears, which abound in vast numbers throughout the forests, and in spite of all imaginable precautions, do considerable damage to the hives. On this account the natives put in practice every kind of means, not only for defending themselves

Russian Tree-climbing and Bear Trap.

from these voracious animals, but for their destruction. The method most in use consists in sticking into the trunk of the tree old blades of knives, standing upwards, scythes, and pieces of pointed iron, disposed circularly round it, when the tree is straight, or at the place of bending when the trunk is crooked. The bear has commonly dexterity enough to avoid these points in climbing up the tree; but when he descends, as he always does, backwards, he gets on these sharp hooks, and receives such deep wounds, that he usually dies. Old bears frequently take the precaution to bend down these blades with their fore-paws as they mount, and thereby render all this offensive armour useless.

Another destructive apparatus has some similitude to the catapulta of the ancients. It is fixed in such a manner that, at the instant the bear prepares to climb the tree, he pulls a string that lets go the machine, whose elasticity strikes a dart into the animal's breast. A further mode is to suspend a platform by long ropes to the farthest extremity of a branch of the tree. The platform is disposed horizontally before the hive, and there tied fast to the trunk of the tree with a cord made of bark. The bear, who finds the seat very convenient for proceeding to the opening of the hive, begins by tearing the cord of bark which holds the platform to the trunk, and hinders him from executing his purpose. Upon this the platform immediately quits the tree, and swings in the air with the animal seated upon it. If, on the first shock, the bear is not tumbled out, he must either take a very dangerous leap, or remain patiently in his suspended seat. If he take the leap, either involuntarily, or by his own good will, he falls on sharp points, placed all about the bottom of the tree; if he resolve to remain where he is, he is shot by arrows or musket balls.


White butterbur. Tressilago alba.


January 27.

St. John Chrysostom. St. Julian of Mans. St Marius.


It is observed in Dr. Forster's "Perennial Calendar," that "Buds and embryo blossoms in their silky, down coats, often finely varnished to protect them from the wet and cold, are the principal botanical subjects for observation in January, and their structure is particularly worthy of notice; to the practical gardener an attention to their appearance is indispensable, as by them alone can he prune with safety. Buds are always formed in the spring preceding that in which they open, and are of two kinds, leaf buds and flower buds, distinguished by a difference of shape and figure, easily discernible by the observing eye; the fruit buds being thicker, rounder, and shorter, than the others—hence the gardener can judge of the probable quantity of blossom that will appear:"—

Lines on Buds, by Cowper.

When all this uniform uncoloured scene
Shall be dismantled of its fleecy load,
And flush into variety again. [sic]
From dearth to plenty, and from death to life,
Is Nature's progress, when she lectures man
In heavenly truth; evincing, as she makes
The grand transition, that there lives and works
A soul in all things, and that soul is God.
He sets the bright procession on its way,
And marshals all the order of the year;
He marks the bounds which winter may not pass,
And blunts his pointed fury; in its case,
Russet and rude, folds up the tender germ,
Uninjured, with inimitable art;
And ere one flowery season fades and dies,
Designs the blooming wonders of the next.

"Buds possess a power analogous to that of seeds, and have been called the viviparous offspring of vegetables, inasmuch as they admit of a removal from their original connection, and, its action being suspended for an indefinite time, can be renewed at pleasure."

On Icicles, by Cowper

The mill-dam dashes on the restless wheel,
And wantons in the pebbly gulf below.
No frost can bind it there; its utmost force
Can but arrest the light and smoky mist,
That in its fall the liquid sheet throws wide.
And see where it has hung th'embroidered banks
With forms so various, that no powers of art,
The pencil, or the pen, may trace the scene!
Here glittering turrets rise, upbearing high
(Fantastic misarrangement!) on the roof
Large growth of what may seem the sparkling trees
And shrubs of fairy land. The crystal drops
That trickle down the branches, fast congealed,
Shoot into pillars of pellucid length,
And prop the pile they but adorned before.


Earth Moss. Phascum cuspidatum.
Dedicated to St. Chrysostom.


January 28.

St. Agnes.—Second Commemoration.

St. Cyril, A.D. 444. Sts. Thyrsus, Leucius, and Callinicus. St. John of Reomay, A.D. 540. Blessed Margaret, Princess of Hungary, A.D. 1271. St. Paulinus, A.D. 804. Blessed Charlemagne, Emperor, A.D. 814. St. Glastian, of Fife, A.D. 830.

St. Thyrsus.

Several churches in Spain are dedicated to him. In 777, the queen of Oviedo and Asturia presented one of them with a silver chalice and paten, a wash-hand basin and a pipe, which, according to Butler, is "a silver pipe, or quill to suck up the blood of Christ at the communion, such as the pope sometimes uses—it sucks up as a nose draws up air."


John Gottlob Immanuel Breitkopf, a celebrated printer, letter-founder, and bookseller of Leipsic, died on this day, in the year 1794: he was born there Novermber 23, 1719. After the perusal of a work by Albert Durer, in which the shape of the letters is deduced from mathematical principles, he endeavoured to fashion them according to the most beautiful models in matrices cut for the purpose. His printing-office and letter-foundery acquired very high reputation. It contained punches and matrices for 400 alphabets, and he employed the types of Baskerville and Didot. Finding that engraving on wood had given birth to printing, and that the latter had contributed to the improvement of engraving, he transferred some particulars, in the province of the engraver, to that of the printer; and represented, by typography, all the marks and lines which occur in the modern music, with all the accuracy of engraving, and even printed maps and mathematical figures with moveable types; though the latter he considered as a matter of mere curiosity: such was also another attempt, that of copying portraits by movable types. He likewise printed, with movable types, the Chinese characters, which are, in general, cut in pieces of wood, so that a whole house is often necessary to contain the blocks employed for a single book. He improved typemetal, by giving it that degree of hardness, which has been a desideratum in founderies of this kind; and discovered a new method of facilitating the process of melting and casting. From his foundery he sent types to Russia, Sweden, Poland, and even America. He also improved the printing-press.

Besides this, his inquiries into the origin and progress of the art of printing, furnished the materials of a history, which he left behind in manuscript. He published in 1784, the first part of "An Attempt to illustrate the origin of playing-cards, the introduction of paper made from linen, and the invention of engraving on wood in Europe;" the latter part was finished, but not published, before his death. His last publication was a small "Treatise on Bibliography," &c. published in 1793, with his reasons for retaining the present German characters. With the interruption of only five or six hours in the twenty-four, which he allowed for sleep, his whole life was devoted to study and useful employment.


Double Daisy. Bellis perennis plenus.
Dedicated to St. Margaret of Hungary.


January 29.

St. Francis of Sales, A.D. 1622. St. Sulicius Severus, A.D. 420. St. Gildas the Abbot, A.D. 570. St. Gildas, the Scot, A.D. 512.

This being the anniversary of the king's accession to the throne, in 1820, is a Holiday at all the public offices, except the Excise, Stamps, and Customs.


Flowering Fern. Osmunda regalis
Dedicated to St. Francis of Sales.


January 30.


Holiday at the Public Offices; except the Stamps, Customs, and Excise.

St. Bathildes, Queen of Navarre, A.D. 680. St Martina. St. Aldegondes, A.D. 660. St. Barsimœus, A.D. 114.

St. Martina.

The Jesuit Ribadeneira relates that the emperor Alexander IV., having decreed that all christians should sacrifice to the Roman gods, or die, insinuated to St[.] Martina, that if she would conform to the edict, he would make her his empress[;] but on her being taken to the temple, "by a sudden earthquake the blockish idol of Apollo was broken in pieces, a fourth part of his temple thrown down, and, with his ruins, were crushed to death; his priests and many others, and the emperor himself, began to fly." Whereupon St. Martina taunted the emperor; and the devil, in the idol, rolling himself in the dust, made a speech to her, and another to the emperor, and "fled through the air in a dark cloud; but the emperor would not understand it." Then the emperor commanded her to be tortured. The jesuit's stories of these operations and her escapes, are wonderfully particular. According to him, hooks and stakes did her no mischief; she had a faculty of shining, which the pouring of hot lard upon her would not quench; when in gaol, men in dazzling white surrounded her; she could not feel a hundred and eighteen wounds; a fierce lion, who had fasted three days, would not eat her, and fire would not burn her; but a sword cut her head off in 228, and at the end of two days two eagles were found watching her body. "That which above all confirmeth the truth of this relation," says Ribadeneira, "is, that there is nothing herein related but what is in brief in the lessons of the Roman Breviary, commanded by public authority to be read on her feast by the whole church."


On this day, in the year 1649, king Charles I. was beheaded. In the Common Prayer Book of the Church of England, it is called "The Day of the Martyrdom of the Blessed King Charles I.;" and there is "A Form of Prayer, with Fasting, to be used yearly" upon its recurrence.

The sheet, which received the head of Charles I., after its decapitation, is carefully preserved along with the communion plate in the church of Ashburnham, in this country; the blood, with which it has been almost entirely covered, now appears nearly black. The watch of the unforunate monarch is also deposited with the linen, the movements of which are still perfect. These relics came into the possession of lord Ashburnham immediately after the death of the king.—Brighton Herald.

Lord Orford says, "one can scarce conceive a greater absurdity than retaining the three holidays dedicated to the house of Stuart. Was the preservation of James I. a greater blessing to England than the destruction of the Spanish armada, for which no festival is established? Are we more or less free for the execution of king Charles? Are we at this day still guilty of his blood? When is the stain to be washed out? What sense is there in thanking heaven for the restoration of a family, which it so soon became necessary to expel again?"

According to the "Life of William Lilly, written by himself," Charles I. caused the old astrologer to be consulted for his judgment. This is Lilly's account: "His majesty, Charles I., having intrusted the Scots with his person, was, for money, delivered into the hands of the English parliament, and, by several removals, was had to Hampton-court, about July or August, 1647; for he was there, and at that time when my house was visited with the plague. He was desirous to escape from the soldiery, and to obscure himself for some time near London, the citizens whereof began now to be unruly, and alienated in affection from the parliament, inclining wholly to his majesty, and very averse to the army. His majesty was well informed of all this, and thought to make good use hereof: besides, the army and parliament were at some odds, who should be masters. Upon the king's intention to escape, and with his consent, madam Whorewood (whom you knew very well, worthy esquire) came to receive my judgment, viz. in what quarter of this nation he might be most safe, and not to be discovered until himself pleased. When she came to my door, I told her I would not let her come into my house, for I buried a maid-servant of the plague very lately: however, up we went. After erection of my figure, I told her about twenty miles (or thereabouts) from London, and in Essex, I was certain he might continue undiscovered. She liked my judgment very well; and, being herself of a sharp judgment, remembered a place in Essex about that distance, where was an excellent house, and all conveniences for his reception. Away she went, early next morning, unto Hampton-court, to acquaint his majesty; but see the misfortune: he, either guided by his own approaching hard fate, or misguided by Ashburnham, went away in the nightime westward, and surrendered himself to Hammond, in the Isle of Wight. Whilst his majesty was at Hampton-court, alderman Adams sent his majesty one thousand pounds in gold, five hundred whereof he gave to madam Whorewood. I believe I had twenty pieces of that very gold for my share." Lilly proceeds thus: "His majesty being in Carisbrook-castle, in the Isle of Wight, the Kentish men, in great numbers, rose in arms, and joined with the lord Goring; a considerable number of the best ships revolted from the parliament; the citizens of London were forward to rise against the parliament; his majesty laid his design to escape out of prison, by sawing the iron bars of his chamber window; a small ship was provided, and anchored not far from the castle to bring him into Sussex; horses were provided ready to carry him through Sussex into Kent, that so he might be at the head of the army in Kent, and from thence to march immediately to London, where thousands then would have armed for him. The lady Whorewood came to me, acquaints me herewith. I got G. Farmer (who was a most ingenious locksmith, and dwelt in Bow-lane) to make a saw to cut the iron bars in sunder, I mean to saw them, and aqua fortis besides. His majesty in a small time did his work; the bars gave liberty for him to go out; he was out with his body till he came to his breast; but then his heart failing, he proceeded no farther: when this was discovered, as soon after it was, he was narrowly looked after, and no opportunity after that could be devised to enlarge him."

Lilly goes on to say, "He was beheaded January 30, 1649. After the execution, his body was carried to Windsor, and buried with Henry VIIIth, in the same vault where his body was lodged. Some, who saw him embowelled, affirm, had he not come unto his untimely end, he might have lived, according unto nature, even unto the height of old age. Many have curiously inquired who it was that cut off his head: I have no permission to speak of such things; only thus much I say, he that did it is as valiant and resolute a man as lives, and one of a competent fortune. For my part, I do believe he was not the worst, but the most unfortunate of kings."

Lilly elsewhere relates, "that the next Sunday but one after Charles I. was beheaded, Robert Spavin, secretary unto lieutenant-general Cromwell at that time, invited himself to dine with me, and brought Anthony Pierson, and several others, along with him to dinner. Their principal discourse all dinner-time was, who it was beheaded the king: one said it was the common hangman; another Hugh Peters; others also were nominated, but none concluded. Robert Spavin, so soon as dinner was done, took me by the hand, and carried me to the south window; saith he, 'These are all mistaken, they have not named the man that did the fact; it was lieutenant-colonel Joice: I was in the room when he fitted himself for the work, stood behind him when he did it; when done, went in again with him. There is no man knows this but my master, viz. Cromwell, commissary Ireton, and myself.'—'Doth not Mr. Rushworth know of it?' said I. 'No, he doth not know it,' saith Spavin. The same thing Spavin since hath often related unto me when we were alone."


SHROVE TUESDAY regulates most of the moveable feasts. Shrove Tuesday itself is the next after the first new moon in the month of February. If such new moon should happen on a Tuesday, the next Tuesday following is Shrove Tuesday. A recently published volume furnishes a list, the introduction of which on the next page puts the reader in possession of serviceable knowledge on this point, and affords an opportunity for affirming, that Mr. Nicolas's book contains a variety of correct and valuable information not elsewhere in a collected form:—


"Tables, Calendars, &c. for the use of Historians, Antiquaries, and the Legal Profession, by N. H. Nicolas, Esq."

Advent Sunday, is the nearest Sunday to the feast of St. Andrew, November 30th, whether before or after.

Ascension Day, or Holy Thursday, is the Thursday in Rogation week, i.e. the week following Rogation Sunday.

Ash Wednesday, or the first day in lent, is the day after Shrove Tuesday.

Carle, or Care Sunday, or the fifth Sunday in lent, is the fifth Sunday after Shrove Tuesday.

Corpus Christi, or Body of Christ, is a festival kept on the Thursday after Trinity Sunday; and was instituted in the year 1264.

Easter Day. The Paschal Sabbath. The Eucharist, or Lord's Supper, is the seventh Sunday after Shrove Tuesday, and is always the first Sunday after the first full moon, which happens on or next after the 21st of March.

Easter Monday, Easter Tuesday, are the Monday and Tuesday following Easter day.

Ember Days, are the Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, after the first Sunday in lent; after the Feast of Pentecost; after Holy-rood Day, or the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, viz. 14th September; and after St. Lucia's day, viz. 15th December.

Ember Weeks, are those weeks in which the Ember days fall.

The Eucharist. See Easter day.

Good Friday, is the Friday in Passion Week, and the next Friday before Easter day.

Holy Thursday. See Ascension day.

Lent, a Fast from Ash Wednesday, to the Feast of Easter, viz. forty days.

Lord's Supper. See Easter day.

Low Sunday, is the Sunday next after Easter day.

Maunday Thursday, is the day before Good Friday.

Midlent, or the fourth Sunday in Lent, is the fourth Sunday after Shrove Tuesday.

Palm Sunday, or the sixth Sunday in Lent, is the sixth Sunday after Shrove Tuesday.

Paschal Sabbath. See Easter day.

Passion Week, is the week next ensuring after Palm Sunday.

Pentecost, or Whit Sunday, is the fiftieth day and seventh Sunday after Easter day.

Quinquagesima Sunday, is so named from its being about the fiftieth day before Easter. It is also called Shrove Sunday.

Relick Sunday, is the third Sunday after Midsummer-day.

Rogation Sunday, is the fifth Sunday after Easter day.

Rogation Days are the Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday following Rogation Sunday.

Shrove Sunday, is the Sunday next before Shrove Tuesday. It is also called Quinquagesima Sunday.

Septuagesima Sunday, so called from its being about the seventieth day before Easter, is the third Sunday before Lent.

Sexigesima Sunday, is the second Sunday before Lent, or the next to Shrove Sunday, so called as being about the sixtieth day before Easter.

Trinity Sunday, or the Feast of the Holy Trinity, is the next Sunday after Pentecost or Whitsuntide.

Whit Sunday. See Pentecost.

Whit Monday, Whit Tuesday, are the Monday and Tuesday following Whit Sunday.

Whitsuntide, is the three days above-mentioned.

The Vigil or Eve of a feast, is the day before it occurs. Thus the Vigil of the feast of St. John the Baptist is the 23d of June. If the feast-day falls upon a Monday, then the Vigil or the Eve is kept upon the Saturday preceding.

The Morrow of a feast, is the day following: thus the feast of All Souls, is November 2d, and the Morrow of All Souls is consequently the 3d of November.

The Octave or Utas of each feast, is always the eighth day after it occurs; for example, the feast of St. Hillary, is the 13th of February, hence the Octave of St. Hillary, is the 20th of that month.

In the Octaves, means within the eight days following any particular feast.


Is the ninth Sunday before Easter Sunday.


Is the eighth Sunday before Easter.


Is the sixth Sunday before Easter, and the first Sunday in Lent, which commences on Ash Wednesday.

"The earliest term of the Septuagesima Sunday is the 18th of January, when Easter day falls on the 22d of March; the latest is the 22d of February, when Easter happens on the 25th of April[.]"


Shepherd in his "Elucidation of the Book of Common Prayer" satisfactorily explains the origin of these days:
       "When the words Septuagesima, Sexagesima, and Quinquagesima were first applied to denote these three Sundays, the season of Lent had generally been extended to a fast of six weeks, that is thirty-six days, not reckoning the Sundays, which were always celebrated as festivals. At this time, likewise, the Sunday which we call the first Sunday in Lent, was styled simply Quadragesima, or the fortieth, meaning the fortieth day before Easter. Quadragesima was also the name given to Lent, and denoted the Quadragesimal, or forty days' fast. When the three weeks before Quadragesima ceased to be considered as weeks after the Epiphany, and were appointed to be observed as a time of preparation for Lent, it was perfectly conformable to the ordinary mode of computation to reckon backwards, and for the sake of even and round numbers to count by decades. The authors of this novel institution, and the compilers of the new proper offices, would naturally call the first Sunday before Quadragesima, Quinquagesima; the second, Sexagesima; and the third, Septuagesima. This reason corresponds with the account that seems to be at present most generally adopted."

There is much difference of opinion as to whether the fast of Lent lasted anciently during forty days or forty hours.


Common Maidenhair. Asplenium trichomanes.
Dedicated to St. Martina.


January 31.

King George IV. proclaimed. Holiday at the Exchequer.

St. Peter Nolasco, A.D. 1258. St. Serapion, A.D. 1240. St. Cyrus and John. St. Marcella, A.D. 410. St. Maidoc, or Maodhog, alias Aidar, otherwise Mogue, Bishop of Ferns, A.D. 1632.

St. Peter Nolasco.

Ribadeneira relates, that on the 1st of August 1216, the virgin Mary with a beautiful train of holy virgins appeared to this saint at midnight, and signified it was the divine pleasure that a new order should be instituted under the title of Our Blessed Lady of Mercy, for the redemption of captives, and that king James of Aragon had the same vision at the same time, and "this order, therefore, by divine revelation, was founded upon the 10th, or as others say, upon the 23d of August." Then St. Peter Nolasco begged for its support, and thereby rendered himself offensive to the devil. For once taking up his lodging in private, some of the neighbours told him, that the master of the house, a man of evil report, had lately died, and the place had ever since been inhabited by "night spirits," wherein he commended himself to the virgin and other saints, and "instantly his admonitors vanished away like smoke, leaving an intolerable scent behind them." These of course were devils in disguise. Then he passed the sea in his cloak, angels sung before him in the habit of his order and the virgin visited his monastery. One night he went into the church and found the angels singing the service instead of the monks; and at another time seven stars fell from heaven, and on digging the ground "there, they found a most devout image of our lady under a great bell,"—and so forth.


Hartstongue. Asplenium Scolopendium.
Dedicated to St. Marcella.