Page:Notes and Queries - Series 11 - Volume 11.djvu/107

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ii s. XL JAN. so, 1915.] NOTES AND QUERIES.


97


edge. But the analogy with the New Orleans practice consequent on the overflow of the Mississippi seems to me to be extremely far-fetched. MB. LEWIS assumes that near- ness to a large river or proximity to the sea makes " the wall method of burial com- pulsory." If that were the case, the world would be full of walled -in tombs by almost every large river's bank ; and in Norfolk alone, where burial-grounds occur by every river-bank, and even where estuaries of the sea foamed in the past, we should expect to find the Brampton " use," but we certainly do not. JAMES HOOPER.

92, Queen's Road, Norwich.

ENGLISH SOVEREIGNS AS DEACONS (US. xi. 48). Although not directly relevant to this query, a curious similar custom survives a,s regards another monarch.

A few years ago I saw in the Church of St. John Lateran in Rome preparations being made on a sort of platform for some ceremony which was to take place an hour or two after I was obliged to leave. Several chairs were placed on this platform for dignitaries of the Church, and in the middle of them was placed an extremely un- ecclesiastical chair of Empire character, in white and gold, and, I think, with a crimson brocade seat. On inquiry it was stated that such a chair was always placed, with those for the (?) Canons, fortne " King of France," who was ex officio a Canon of St. John Lateran, but that it was now never occupied.

Probably it could never again be occupied until there is again a " King of France." Were not Charles X. and Louis Philippe " Hois des Fraii9ais," and not " of France " ?

W. C. J.

Epsom.

I think it can be quite confidently asserted that the late Bishop Creighton never made the statement attributed to him "that the sovereign of England, as such, is a sub- deacon of the Catholic Church." A sub- deacon, unlike a poet, " fit, non nascitur." Perhaps some writers in the Middle Ages .may have contended that an English king had the right to ordination as subdeacon if he so desired it ; arid the unction which he received at his coronation was taken by .some, as Lyndwood asserts, to render him a persona mixta i.e., as it were, an hono- rary cleric ; but an ordained subdeacon is Tsound to clerical celibacy, and must have an ecclesiastical title. Much erudition on the subject of the ecclesiastical vestments worn by the king, very succinctly sum- marized, may be found in ' The Coronation


Ceremonial,' by Herbert Thurston, S.J. (second and revised edition, London, Catholic Truth Society, 1911, price Qd. net). JOHN B. WAINE WRIGHT.

LUCIA PARKER'S question re Queen Vic- toria's being a Catholic subdeacon (qua- tenus a sovereign) is answered by anticipa- tion at 2 S. xi. 230, where " D. BOCK, Brook Green," says (the italics are mine) :

" Should the Roman emperor, or any sovereign, be present at that service [Christmas Eve matins], it is for him, arrayed in alb, stole, girdle, cope and this [crimson-velvet, pearl-em broideredl hat,

and girt with this [magnificent] sword to sing

the seventh lesson 'Exiit edictum a Caesare

Augusto.' "

DR. ROCK quotes his authorities : Martene* ' De Antiq. Ecc. Hit.,' ii. 303, 213; Cenni, ' Monum. Domin. Pontif.,' ii. 271, 274; Magri, ' Hierolexicon ' ; and * Friderici III. Advent. Rom.,' i. 263. While the Pope celebrates Mass, the German Emperor " more subdiaconi offerat calicem et ampullam," or even performs " pulchre et egregie.... officio diaconi."

Next to the Emperor is the King of France or of Sicily, the first reading the Gospel, and either of the latter the Epistle. H. H. JOHNSON.

Torquay.

GREGENTIUS ARCHIEPISCOPUS TEPHRENSIS (US. xi. 48). This was St. Gregentius, the Arabian Archbishop of Taphar or Dhafar. When the Christians of Najran were mas- sacred by Dzu Nowas, Emperor of Yemen, the Court of Constantinople stirred up the Prince of Abyssinia to avenge the deed, and this was done in A.D. 525. Bishop Gregen- tius was deputed by the Patriarch of Alex- andria to follow up the secular by a spiritual conquest, and this he did with " more energy than judgment." He is said to have had a public debate with Herban, one of the most learned of the Jewish rabbis in South Arabia, as a result of which many Jews were converted to Christianity. An account of this debate was printed at Paris in 1586 with the title " Sancti patris nostri Gre- gentii disputatio cum Herbano Judseo. Nunc primurn Grsece edita cum interpreta- tione N. Guloiiii." (In Greek and Latin.)

Bishop Gregentius is also said to have helped King Abraha to frame a code of laws, still extant in Greek, and divided into twenty- three sections, though the authenticity of this code is doubted by many, as it is more ascetic and monastic in character than social. He was, however, instrumental in building a magnificent cathedral at Sana,