10 s. xii. DEC. 11, 1909.] NOTES AND QUERIES.
published two or three years ago in The Home Counties Magazine as well as in The Daily Mirror, in both of which the fine old j fig tree is referred to.
In 1846 I saw a fig tree in the back yard of a house on the south side of Took's Court, Chancery Lane. One still exists in Victoria Park Road, Hackney, at the rear of Cam- bridge Heath Road. This bears fruit which -does not ripen ; the house to which it is .attached is about seventy years old. The tree is probably a cutting from the Aldgate tree above mentioned. Another, which is , cutting from the same tree and of recent planting, is at Old Ford, E
I much regret to say that the light of publicity has apparently proved too strong for the St. Anne's fig tree to which I referred, ante, p. 293. Since my reply passed through the press it has decayed, and is, like that earlier plant whereof we read, to be " cut down.'* WILLIAM McMuRRAY.
There are some old fig trees at the New River Head in Rosebery Avenue. They form fruit, but the fruit does not ripen.
H. N. ELLACOMBE.
Bitton Vicarage, Bristol.
There is not the least doubt that figs would ripen in Shoreditch. London City and the adjoining suburbs displace some of the best soil for fruit, trees, and vegetables in Middlesex, Essex, or Hertfordshire. I saw some fine vegetables raised on the -.site of Holborn Viaduct the season after thejhouses were pulled down.
THE YEW TREE (10 S. xii. 421). MR. PEACOCK'S purpose of a catalogue raisonne of the yews in the United Kingdom has been accomplished, and well accomplished, already. The late Dr. John Lowe published ' The Yew Trees of Great Britain and Ire- land ' in 1897, an admirable monograph.
Although the age attributed to individual yews in various parts of the country is often greatly exaggerated, there can be no doubt that in longevity it exceeds all other British trees, owing to its power of renewing growth by forming fresh wood outside and inde- pendent of a decayed stem.
It may be interesting to note, relative to MR. PEACOCK'S article and his quotation from Sir Walter Scott, that perhaps the oldest known and most interesting yew tree
in Scotland is the yew at Dryburgh Abbey. It is a fine tree, standing within a few yards of the graves of Scott and Lockhart. When I was there, not long ago, the custodian of the abbey gave the assurance that the yew was of the same age as the abbey, which would be seven centuries and a half. ' Bad- deley J says something of the same kind ; but it would be interesting to know if there is actual scientific information to that effect.
G. M. FRASER. Public Library, Aberdeen.
THE YEW IN POETRY (10 S. xii. 388, 436). A large number of poetical references to the yew, and to other trees, will be found in ' Forest Trees and Woodland Scenery as described by Ancient and Modern Poets,' by Mr. William Menzies, published by Longmans, Green & Co. in 1875. R. B.
I am aware that the three quotations on the yew are in Dr. John Lowe's ' Yew Trees of Great Britain and Ireland ' (the third on p. 181), but I desire to trace them to their source, and have failed to do so. I have hunted in vain for Sir James Mackintosh's ' Letter to Francis Horner, 1 and in poems by " FitzGerald. 11 I. M. L.
AUTHORS OF QUOTATIONS WANTED (10 S. ii. 49). No. 4, "Meditation is the science of the saints.' 1 A parallel to these words quoted by MEDICULUS, and possibly their source, occurs in the first chapter of Bishop Hall's ' The Art of Divine Meditation, where meditation is called " the pastime of Saints." EDWARD BENSLY.
VINTNERS* COMPANY (10 S. xii. 30, 153). MR. UNTHANK will find the article which he is seeking in The Gentleman's Magazine for June, 1905. It is entitled ' The Ward of Vintry,'- by W. Howard-Flanders, pp. 606-17.
J. HOLD EN MACMlCHAEL
"LE n BEFORE TRADES (10 S. xii. 189, 237). The use of this word is curiously illustrated, though not in a commercial way, by an action brought in the fourth year of Elizabeth, and reported (p. 26) by Serjeant Benlowes. One Digges was out- lawed by the name of W. Digges, formerly of London, but now in the county of Kent. He prayed for a reversal of the outlawry, on the ground that his place of residence was in Middlesex. The Justices of the Common Bench said that " le roigne et le Digges doient estre al issue," and that issue must be tried first. RICHARD H. THORNTON.
36, Upper Bedford Place, W.C.