NOTES AND QUERIES. DO s. xn. JULY 24 , 1900.
Hall Caine in his life of Coleridge declares that the onus of proof is on those who doubt Gillmaii's claim to success in curing Coleridge of the drug habit. These letters appear to set all spesulation on the subject at rest. In one letter (which is undated) Coleridge writes :
DEAR SIR, If it be in your possess", could you favour me with an oz. of the Liquid Morphii, equal in strength to Laudanum, or in lieu of this half a scruple of the Acetate Morohii ? S. T. C.
" TE IGITUB." Some years ago, when visiting Chichester Cathedral, I saw in the library an illuminated missal open at a page commencing " Te Igitur." As the book was in a glass case, I had not the opportunity of examining it. I find in the description of the trial of Rebecca in ' Ivan- hoe ' the following allusion to it :
" 'Hath he made oath,' said the Grand Master?
- that his quarrel is just and honourable? Bring
forward the crucifix and the Te Igitur? " Chap, xliii.
JOHN PICKFOBD, M.A.
Newbourne Rectory, Woodbridge.
" SCEPTIC " : " SCEUGH." The word sceptic has long enjoyed the doubtful honour of being quoted as the only one in English in which sc is sounded sk before e. There h, however, one other example, and that is the North-Country term sceugh, pro- nounced skew. It is common in place-names, as Lambsceugh, Middlesceugh. In Lan- cashire it is written scough, but by another curious anomaly the Lancashire surnames Ayscough and Myerscough are popularly pronounced Askew and Maskew, as if they ended in sceugh instead of scough. We seem here to have the orthography of one dialect, and the pronunciation of another. It is a parallel case to that of the place in the Sand- wich Islands which Mark Twain mentions, spelt Kawaehae and pronounced To-a-hi. JAS. PLATT, Jun.
DEVONSHIBE SUPERSTITIONS. A village schoolmaster, whose school is situated a few miles from Exeter, recently gave the boys in his senior class a composition lesson to write at home upon local super- stitions. The replies stated the following things to be unlucky :
To open a door to a black cat.
For a cat to bring a dead snake into the house.
To keep a kitten that has been born in the month of May.
For a cat to sit with its tail towards the fireplace.
To let a goose sit on eggs when a west wind is blowing.
To put your boots or a pair of bellows on the table.
To put on your coat inside out.
For two persons to wipe themselves upon a towel at the same time.
For two to jump a gate) together.
,To give away anything that has been received as a present.
' To meet and pass any person on the stairs.
To give a baby copper money.
To allow an infant to look into a looking- glass before it is two years old.
For a magpie to fly in front of you.
To put on the left stocking first"
To break a salt cellar.
To cut finger-nails on Sunday.
For boys to be baptized before girls at Church where babies of both sexes are present for that purpose.
For a grave to be left open on a Sunday, because in that case one of the same family will die within the year.
To bring holly berries into the house before Christmas Eve.
To sing Christmas carols at any time savo during that festive season. If this is done, a cow or some other of the stock will surely die.
To open the street door on New Year'? morning to a person with light hair.
HABBY HEMS. Fair Park, Exeter.
[Several of the superstitions noted are very widely spread."!
- J|RossALL SLANG. (Cf. 10 S. vii. 125, 193.)
A few weeks ago I ventured to make the attempt to draw inferences from a list of Rossall words and phrases supplied me by a colleague, who is himself an O.R. It is possible that some readers of ' N. & Q.' may be able to furnish corrections or confirma- tions of my inferences. The sum of these was that, with one exception, our Rossall vocabulary is not drawn from Lancashire sources, and that Wiltshire and Ireland have had most effect upon it. I hazard the conjecture that the ' English Dialect Dictionary ' has unfortunately been negli- gent enough to record the slang of the public schools as evidence of the counties in which these schools stand, so that it is impossible to judge from the ' Dictionary ' whether I am right in believing the Wiltshire words are really only words imported from Marlborough, or are to be filiated to that county in some other way. Similarly I