NOTES AND QUERIES. [io s. xn. DEC. 25, im
dabbed with red and black patches, and his head crowned with a fool's-cap of colours, with paper streamers. His opening lines said, he drew to the background of the party of " guisers," but came again to wind up the performance as " Devil Doubt, n with an old besom over his shoulder, in order, if the company " gev nowt," to " sweep them aw to the grave."
Other lads came round with " Th' Darby Tup " or " Darby Ram " ; but " tup " was the favourite word. These always asked, after knocking : " Will you have the Christmas in ? ll This was the general term, and the home decorating was called " Putting Christmas up. n
[Many other notes on Christmas " mummers,' " guisers," &c., will be found in earlier volumes.]
CHRISTMAS QUARREL FIFTY YEARS AGO. Irving' s ' Annals of our Times l records the following :
" December 25, 1859. A Riot took place at Aldershot camp, arising out of a controversy between the 24th Foot and the Tower Hamlets Militia as to which had got the best Christmas dinner. The discussion waxed so hot that the 24th crossed over to the quarters occupied by their opponents and -fired upon them with loaded rifles. Four of the unfortunate militia men were wounded, and one was killed."
JACK-KNIVES GIVEN TO UGLY MEN. The practice of making such gifts appears to have arisen in America, and is nearly obsolete. It therefore seems to deserve a note. It goes back at Harvard College (now Harvard University) beyond 1794. In that year Mr. William Biglow was the recipient of the jack-knife. In 1795 he handed it on to Mr. Charles Prentiss, with these lines :
Item. C P has my knife
During his natural college life ;
That knife, which ugliness inherits,
And due to his superior merits ;
And when from Harvard he shall steer
I order him to leave it here,
That 't may from class to class descend,
Till time and ugliness shall end.
See B. H. Hall's 'College Words and Customs,' Cambridge, Mass., 1856, pp. 267-
There is an amusing tale in The Knicker- bocker Magazine, xxxii. 126 (August, 1848), in which a man, meeting another, says,
1m hanged if you 're not the ugliest man I ve seen to-day," and gives him a jack- fcnife. RICHARD H. THORNTON.
36, Upper Bedford Place, W.C
WE must request correspondents desiring in- formation on family matters of only private interest to affix their names and addresses to their queries, in order that answers may be sent to them direct.
GOETHE'S POEM ' EDELKNABE UND WAHR- SAGERIN.' In the famous Goethe collec* tion bequeathed to the library of the Uni versity of Leipzig by the publisher Salomon Hirzel is a transcript of sixteen lines of tho above-named early poetic fragment, begin ning: Kennt ihr die Dime mit lauernden Blick und
raschen Geberden ? Die Schalkin, sie heisst Gelegenheit ; lernt sie nur
But this transcript (printed in the Archiv fur Litteraturgeschichte, vii. 538, cf. ' Goethes Gedichte,' ed. von Loeper, i. 412, being the note to Roman Elegy No. 4, portions of which it anticipates) is in many respects very unsatisfactory. The original manuscript, however, is supposed to be somewhere in England, and my friend Dr. Max Morris of Berlin is most anxious to use it for his elaborate new collection of Goethe's early works, letters, &c. (' Der junge Goethe, 1 Leipzig, Insel-Verlag), of which one volume has already appeared. Perhaps some of your readers may be able to aid us in tracing it. We should be very thankful for any information on this subject, which is of real interest to Goethe scholars.
LEONARD L. MACKALL. Jena, Kaiser Wilhelmstr. 13.
COWPER BIBLIOGRAPHY. I am preparing r or publication a bibliographical study of the poet Cowper, and shall be glad to receive direct from students and collectors com- munications regarding Cowper material. MADISON C. BATES.
457, West 123rd Street, New York City.
' VORTIGERN AND RowENA.' One of the by-products of William Henry Ireland's Shakespeare-essay ' Vortigern l was a little work which I have now before me, two volumes bound in one. Vol. i. is of the sixth edition ; vol. ii. is of the fifth. A dedication bears the date 1795. The title- page runs : * Passages selected by Dis- tinguished Personages in the Great Literary Trial of Vortigern and Rowena ; a Comi- Tragedy ' ; but the book is social, rather than literary, in its bearing. It consists of quasi- quotations, some marked "genuine'-* and others " not genuine, " but every one