Open main menu

Page:Notes and Queries - Series 10 - Volume 12.djvu/503

This page needs to be proofread.


10 s. xii. NOV. 20,


NOTES AND QUERIES.


415


ended. In her fun-making she scoffs at the extreme depression following the vanishing of Endymion's ecstatic love dream by telling how, in this tale, the ringdove the bird that " croodles am'rously," and is specially associated with love-making dropped an ominous sprig of yew in the lover's path, and " how he died." Is there anything more in this than the fact that yew, being used at funerals, and therefore naturally suggestive of death, was a suitable token for Peona to choose ?

In * Twelfth Night' the clown sings of My shroud of white, stuck all with yew ; and Herrick in ' Hesperides ' (No. 82) has : And now 'tis known, behold ! behold I bring

Unto the ghost th' effused offering ; And look ! what smallage, nightshade, cypress, yew,

Unto the shades have been, or now are due.

It probably was not in Keats' s thought that yew is poisonous. It is generally now admitted, I suppose, that Shakespeare's "cursed hebenon" and Spenser's ' n


heben


sad" mean yew.

Dismissing ' Endymion,' it may be perhaps noted here that in ' Urn Burial ' Sir Thomas Browne suggests another than a gloomy association with yew as a funereal accom- paniment ; and also Gilbert White, in ' Antiquities of Selborne,' devotes Letter V. to discussing the poisonous qualities of yew and its place in churchyards. M. C. L.

New York City.

DEVIL'S SAFFRON (10 S. xii. 169). In Hogg and Johnson's ' Wild Flowers of Great Britain' (1866) this parasite is said to be " so destructive to the plants upon the saps of which it lives, that it has received the local names of Devil' s-guts and Hell- weed." The plate in the book is drawn from a specimen " kindly furnished by Mrs. Gulson of East Cliff, near Teignmouth, who found it growing on furze in the neighbourhood of Dawlish."

JOHN T. PAGE.

The Elms, Long Itohington.

The dodder plant is more widely known in the North and the Midlands by the appro- priate, if unpleasant name of " Devil's guts," -from the circumstance of the roots running very deep into the ground, and from the difficulty met with in extirpating it ; in fact, it defies the skill of the gardener and farmer to eradicate it entirely when once thoroughly in possession of the ground. From its destructive nature in suffocating other plants, it is also known as hell-weed and strangle-tare, because of the resemblance


of the stem which winds around other plants and strangles them to catgut. On the other hand, it is sometimes dedicated to the Virgin Mary as " Lady's laces," and is otherwise known as " Bride's laces." See Friend's ' Flowers and Flower Lore,' 1884 ; Patrick's ' Plants,' 1831 ; and the ' Dialect Diet.,' s.v. ' Devil's guts.'

J. HOLDEN MACMlCHAEL.

BARON GRANT (10 S. xii. 328). In 1885 or 1886 a son of this gentleman formed one of a party of B.N.C. men who were reading with me for classical pass Mods, and Greats.

J. P. OWEN.

70, Comeragh Road, W.

LAND OFFICE : " LAND OFFICE BUSINESS " (10 S. xii. 150). MR. THORNTON asks for earlier examples of these two terms than 1780 and 1882 respectively. I regret that I can furnish no examples of the latter term ; but the former term, as the following quotations show, had been in use over a century before 1790 :

" An Act relating to the Land Office also passed in these words November the 12th 1681 Upper house have Assented John LLewellin Cl of

Assembly An Act Relating to the Land Office

and the fees of the Clerk of the Council within this Province his Lordship having Ordered the Same to be read intimates to the Lower house that he cannot reasonably impose upon the Secretary the Entering of Certificates," &c. ' Archives of Maryland,' vii. 242-3.

" The hon bl6 Coll. Henry Digges and Maj r Nicholas Sewall Principall Secretarys of this Province produce to the board severall Rules necessary to be observed in their office for Lands . . . .They were ordered to be read and are as followeth viz. Some particular heads of such Rules as ought more strictly to be observed in the Land Office." 1686, May 6, ditto, v. 477.

" John Penn, Thomas Penn and Richard Penn, Esquires, true and absolute Proprietors of the province of Pennsylvania and counties of New- castle Kent and Sussex on Delaware [these counties constituted Delaware] .... do hereby

constitute thee the said Richard Peters to be

our Secretary for the said province and

counties to prepare and draw up all writings

and Instruments relating to the Land Offices of the said province and counties." 1737, Oct. 26, ' Pennsylvania Archives,' i. 545.

" Whereas, in and by an act of the General

Assembly it is among other things enacted

that a land Office be immediately opened for the purpose of granting lands under the following

regulations Resolved, That the said Office

be immediately opened under the foregoing regulations." 1780, 25 Feb., ' Revolutionary Records of the State of Georgia,' ii. 226.

" Resolved that the remaining part of the report of the Committe be Postponed till the Bill should be brought in for opening the land Office. 1783, 24 Jan., ditto, iii. 237.