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Ttu ill ihe unconsciousness of power
Aud life, beyond this mortal hour;
Those mountings of the soul within
At thoughts of heaven, as birds begin
By instinct in the cage to rise,
When near their time for change of skits;
That proud assurance of our claim To rank among the sons of light,
Mingled with shame! oh, bitter shame! At having risked that splendid right, For aught that earth, through all its range Of glories, offers in exchange!
'Twas all this, at the instant brought, like breaking sunshine o'er my thought;
Twas all this, kiudled to a glow
Thus purely ever, man might grow,
No, never shall I lose the trace
Of what I've felt in this bright place:
And should my spirit's hope grow weak, Should 1, oh God! e'er doubt thy power,
This mighty scene again I'll seek, At the same calm and glowing hour;
And here, at the sublimest shrine That nature ever reared to thee,
Rekindle all that hope divine, Aud feel my immortality.
Friday last. On his entering into the county at Croft-bridge, which separates it from the county of York, he was met by the officers of the see, the mayor and corporation of Stockton, and several of the principal nobility and others of the county. Here a sort of ceremony was performed, which had its origin in th* feudal times," &c.
The origin of the ceremony above alluded to is this. About the commencement of the fourteenth century, sir John Conyers slew with his falchion in the fields of Sockburne, a monstrous creature, a dragon, a worm, or flying serpent, that devoured men, women, and children. The then owner of Sockburne, as a reward for his bravery, gave him the manor with its appurtenances to hold for ever, on condition that he met the lord bishop of Durham, with this falchion, on his first entrance into his diocese, after his election to that see. And in confirmation of this tradition, there is painted in a window of Sockburne church, the falchion just now spoken of; and it is also cut in marble, upon the tomb of the great ancestor of the Conyers', together with a dog and the monstrous worm or serpent, lying at his feet. When the bishop first comes into his diocese, he crossses the river Tees, either at the Ford of Nesham, or Croft-bridge, at one of which places the lord of the manor of Sockburne, or his representative, rides into the middle of the river, if the bishop comes by Nesham, with the ancient falchion drawn in his hand, or upon the middle of Croft-bridge; and then presents it to the bishop, addressing him in the ancient form of words. Upon which the bishop takes the falchion into his hands, looks at it, and returns it back again, wishing the lord of the manor his health and the enjoyment of his estate.
There are likewise some lands at Bishop's Auckland, called Pollara"* lands, held by a similar service, viz. showing to the bishop one fawchon, at his first coming to Auckland after his consecration. The form of words made use of is, I believe, as follows :—
"My Lord,—On behalf of myself as well as of the several other tenants of Pollard's lands, I do humbly present your lordship with this fawchon, at your first coming here, wherewith as die tradidion goeth, Pollard slew of old, T great and venomous serpent, which Ji<l much harm to man and beast, itiiJ by t".i > performance of this service these lands are holden."
The drawing of the falchion and tomb in Sockburne church, I have unfortunately lost, otherwise it should have accompanied this communication: perhaps some of your numerous readers will be able to furnish you with it.
Dear Sir, &c.
The editor joins in his respected correspondent's desire to see a representation in the Every-Day Book, of "the falchion and tomb in Sockburne church." A correct drawing of it shall be accurately engraven, if any gentleman will be pleased to communicate one : such a favour will be respectfully acknowledged.
Mean Temperature... 63 • 57.
Mayor Of Bartlemass. To the Editor of the Every-Day Book. July 4, 1826.
Sir,—The following is a brief notice of the annual mock election of the "mayor of Bartlemass," at Newbury, in Berkshire.
The day on which it takes place, is the first Monday after St. Anne's; therefore, this year if net discontinued, and I believe it is not, it will be held on the thirty-first day of July. The election is held at the Bull and Dog public-house, where a dinner is provided; the principal dishes being bacon and beans, have obtained for it the name of the "bacon and bean feast." In the course of the day a procession takes place. A cabbage is stuck on a pole and carried instead of a mace, accompanied by similar substitutes for the other emblems of civic dignity, and there is, of course, plenty of " rough music." A "justice is chosen at the same time, some other offices are filled up, and the day ends by all concerned getting completely " how came ye so."
In the same town, a mock mayor and •uslice are likewise chosen for Norcutt
lane, but whether on the same day or not I cannot say; how long these customs have existed, or whence they originated I do not know; they were before I, or the oldest man in the town, can remember.
A Snu: M.i w it.
By the "Mirror of the Months," the appearance of natural scenery at this season is brought before us; "The cornfields are all redundant with waving gold —gold of all hues—from the light ytllow of the oats, (those which still remain uncut,) to the deep sunburnt glow of the red wheat. But the wide rich sweeps of these fields are now broken in-upon, here and there, by patches of the parched and withered looking bean crops; by occasional bits of newly ploughed land, where the rye lately stood; by the now darkening turnips—dark, except where they are being fed off by sheep flocks; and lastly by the still bright-green meadows, now studded every where with grazing cattle, the second crops of grass being already gathered in.
"The woods, as well as the single timber trees that occasionally start up with such fine effect from out of the hedge-rows, or in the midst of meadows and cornfields, we shall now find sprinkled with wnat at first looks like gleams of scattered sunshine lying among the leaves, but what, on examination, we shail find to be the new foiiage that has been put forth since midsummer, and which yet retains all the brilliant green of the spring. The effect of this new green, lying in sweeps and patches upon the old, though little observed in general, is one of the most beautiful and characteristic appearances of this season. In many cases, when the sight of it is caught near at hand, on the sides of thick plantations, the effect of it is perfectly deceptive, and you wonder for a moment how it is, that while the sun is shining so brightly every where, it should shine so much more brightly on those particular spots"
The ears are fill'd, the fields are white,
The constant harvest-moon is bright
To grasp the bounty of the year,
The reapers to the scene repair,
With hook in hand, and bottles slung,
And dowlas-scrips beside them hung.
The sickles stubble all the ground,
And fitful hasty laughs go round;
The meals are done as scon as tasted,
And neither time nor viands wasted.
All over—then, the barrels foam—
The " Largess "-cry, the " Harvest-home!" •
Tl.t "Mirror of the Months" likens of youth are either fulfilled or forgatten, August to "that brief, but perhaps best and the fears and forethoughts connected |>eriod of human life, when the promises with decline have not yet grown strong
enough to make themselves felt; and consequently when we have nothing to do but look around us, and be happy." For it is in this month that the year " like a man at forty, has turned the corner of its existence; but, like him, it may still fancy itself young, because it does not begin to feel itself getting old. And perhaps there is Do period like this, for encouraging and bringing to perfection that habit of tranquil enjoyment, in which all true happiness must mainly consist: with pleasure it has, indeed, little to do; but with happiness it is every thing."
The author of the volume pursues bis estimate by observing, that "August is that debateable ground of the year, which is situated exactly upon the confines of summer and autumn; and it is difficult to say which has the better claim to it. It is dressed in half the flowers of the one, and half the fruits of the other; and it has a sky and a temperature all its own, and which vie in beauty with those of the spring. May itself can offer nothing so sweet to the senses, so enchanting to the imagination, and so soothing to theheait, as that genial influence which arises from the sights, the sounds, and the associations, connected with an August evening in the country, when the occupations and pleasures of the day are done, and when all, even the busiest, are fain to give way to that 'wise passiveness,' one hour of which is rife with more real enjoyment than a whole season of revelry. Those who will be wise (or foolish) enough to make comparisons between the various kinds of pleasure of which the mind of man is capable, will find that there is none (or but one) equal to that felt by a true lover of nature, when he looks forth upon her open face silently, at a season like the present, and drinks in that still beauty which seems to emanate from every thing he sees, till his whole senses are steeped in a sweet forgetfulness, and he becomes unconscious of all but that instinct of good which is ever present with us, but which can so seldom make itself felt amid that throng of thoughts which are ever busying and besieging us, in our intercourse with the living world. The only other feeling which equals this, in its intense quietude, and its satisfying fulness, is one which is almost identical with it,—where the accepted lover is gazing unobserved, and almost unconsciously, on the face of his mistress, and tracing their sweet evidences of that mys
terious union which already exists between them.
"The whole face of nature has undergone, since last mouth,an obvious change; obvious to those who delight to observe all her changes and operations, but not sufficiently striking to insist on being seen generally by those who can read no characters but such as are written in a text hand. If the general colours of all the various departments of natural scenery are not changed, their hues are; and if there is not yet observable the infinite variety of autumn, there is as little the extreme monotony of summer. In one department, however, there is a general change, that cannot well remain unobserved. The rich and unvarying green of the corn-fields has entirely and almost suddenly changed to a still richer and more conspicuous gold colour; more conspicuous on account of the contrast it now offers to the lines, patches, and masses of green with which it every where lies in contact, in the form of intersecting hedge-rows, intervening meadows, and bounding masses of forest. These latter are changed too; but in hue alone, not in colour. They are all of them still green; but it is not the fresh and tender green of the spring, nor the full and satisfying, though somewhat dull, green of the summer; but many greens, that blend all those belonging to the seasons just named, with others at once more grave and more bright; and the charming variety and interchange of which are peculiar to this delightful month, and are more beautiful in their general effect than those of either of the preceding periods: just as a truly beautiful woman is perhaps more beautiful at the period immediately before that at which her charms begin to wane, than she ever was before. Here, however, the comparison must end; for with the year its incipient decay is the signal for it to put on more and more beauties daily, till, when it reaches the period at which it is on the point of sinking into the temporary death of winter, it is more beautiful in general appearance than ever."
Lammas Day. Though the origin of this denomination is related in vol. i. col. 1063, yet it seems proper to add that Lammas or Lambmas day obtained its name from a mass ordained to St. Peter, supplicating his bentdiction on lambs, in shearing season, to
Preserve them from catching cold. St eter became patron of lambs, from Christ's metaphorical expression, " Feed my lambs," having been construed into a literal injunction.* Raphael makes this misconstruction the subject of one of his great cartoons, by representing Christ as speaking to Peter, and pointing to a flock of lambs.
Lammas Tower* in Mid-Lothian.
There was a Lammas festival, which prevailed in the Lothians from very earlytimes among the young persons employed during summer in tending the herds at pasture. The usage is remarkable.
It appears that the herdsmen within a certain district, towards the beginning of summer, associated themselves into bands, sometimes to the number of a hundred or more. Each of these communities agreed to build a tower in some conspicuous place, near the centre of their district, which was to serve as the place of their rendezvous on Lammas day. This tower was usually built of sods; for the most part square, about four feet in diameter at the bottom, and tapering to a point at the top, which was seldom above seven or eight feet from the ground. In building it, a hole was left in the centre for admitting a flag-staff", on which to display their colours. The tower was usually begun to be built about a month before Lammas, and was carried up slowly by successive additions from time to lime, being seldom entirely completed till a few days before Lammas; though it was always thought that those who completed their's soonest, and kept it standing the longest time before Limmas, behaved in the most gallant manner, and acquired most honour by their conduct.
From the moment the foundation of the tower was laid, it became an object of care and attention to the whole coiumunity; for it was reckoned a disgrace U suffer it to be defaced; so that they r.sisted, with all their power, any attempts that should be made to demolish it, either by force or fraud; and, as the honour that was acquired by the demolition of a tower, if affected by those be'unging to another, was in proportion to the disgrace of suffering it to be demo
liihed, each party endeavoured to circumvent the other as much as possible, and laid plans to steal upon the tower unperceived, in the night time, and level it with the ground. Great was the honour that such a successful exploit conveyed to the undertakers; and, though the tower was easily rebuilt, and was soon put into its former state, yet the news was quickly spread by the successful adventurers, through the whole district, which filled it with shouts of joy and exultat;on, while their unfortunate neighbours were covered with shame. To ward off this disgrace, a constant nightly guard was kept at each tower, which was made stronger and stronger, as the tower advanced; so that frequent nightly skirmishes ensued at these attacks, but were seldom of much consequence, as the assailants seldom came in force to make an attack in this way, but merely to succeed by surprise; as soon, therelore, as they saw they were discovered, they made off in the best manner they could.
To give the alarm on these, and other occasions, every person was armed with a "tooling horn;" that is, a horn perforated in the small end, through which wind can be forcibly blown from the mouth, so as to occasion a loud sound; and, as every one wished to acquire as great dexterity as possible in ihe use of the " tooting horn, ihey practised upon it during the summer, while keeping theii beasts; and towards Lammas they were so incessantly employed at this business, answering to, and vying with each other, that the whole country rang continually with the sounds; and it must no doubt have appeared to be a very harsh and unaccountable noise to a stranger who was then passing through it.
As the great day of Lamrnas approached, each community chose one from among themselves for their captain, and they prepared a stand of colours to be ready to be then displayed. For this purpose, they usually borrowed a fine table napkin of the largest siie, fiom some of the farmer's wives within the district; and, to ornament it, they bor-owed ribbons, which they tacked upon the napkin in si>ch fashion as best suited their fancy. Tilings being thus prepared, they marched forth early in the morning on Lammas day, dressed in their best apparel, each armed with a stout cudgel, and, lepairing 10 their tower, there dis