Page:Notes and Queries - Series 11 - Volume 11.djvu/511

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ii s. xi. JUNE 26, i9io.] NOTES AND QUERIES.


empeche le sorcier de Jeter un sort." Holland {' Faune poptilaire de la France ') says that the general creed of his country is that a goat in a shed preserves the cattle from, con- tagion disea3e.3 and from bad air. Another important use of the odour is set forth in a quotation taken by Holland from, Madame Bagreeff-Speranski's ' Les Pelerins russes a Jerusalem ' :

"Les cochers russes seprocurent ordinairement, comme remade aux persecutions des hit ins, un TDOUC ou un belier, qui, s'attachant bientot a l'4curie, devient Fami intime des chevaux et les preserve, par Fantipathie que tout domovoi bien ne a de son odeur, des maleftces de ce demon capricieux." Tome v. p. 206.

In 'Beast and Man in India' (p. 97) Mr. Lockwood Kipling makes Mahammad answerable for the pleasant assurance,

" There is no house possessing a goat but a blessing abideth thereon ; and there is no house possessing three goats but the angels pass the night there praying." ^ SwiTHIN.

THE CUSTODY OF ECCLESIASTICAL AR- CHIVES (US. xi. 359, 436). The statement of your correspondent MB. JOHN J. HAM- MOND that diocesan documents are kept in the Bishop's and the Dean and Chapter's muniment rooms, and not in a solicitor's office, as stated by Canon Bullock- Webster, is only correct up to a certain point. The muniment rooms referred to are generally apartments in some inaccessible part of cathedrals, such as the chambers above side chapels. The distance of these " muniment rooms " from the so-called " registry,'" which, in actual fact, is more often than not the personal office of a solicitor in general prac- tice, as Canon Bullock-Webster states, gives the Registrar's clerks a considerable amount of additional Work, and it has undoubtedly become the practice to keep at the Registrar's office some at least of the registers and documents which are frequently required either for official or research work. These documents are not always adequately pro- tected from fire when in the Registrar's office "but they are probably just as safe as they would be in the "muniment room," which is generally a neglected apartment covered with dust, into which fresh air and light never penetrate, and which is seldom dis- turbed except by the vermin which live there

and which, in conjunction with neglect and

damp, are gradually destroying these valu- able records. From time to time odd docu- ments are dug out at the request of persisten searchers ; these are not always immediately returned, and some, to my personal know ledge, have not returned at "all. The question


must also be regarded from the point of view of the Registrars clerks, on whom the actual work of attending to searchers devolves. They are not officials of the ecclesiastical authorities, but of the Registrar, and the work entailed by the requests of students for documents is regarded as of secondary importance, and often resented as a nuisance. Searchers also experience the feeling that they are the recipient of favours, and a great waste of time is entailed. The remedy is well known to all habitues of registries,'but if one is continual ly engaged in this class of work the expense becomes out of proportion with the results. The only remedy is a drastic one. The ecclesiastical authorities do not possess adequate funds for the care, calendaring, and making available of these records. These documents are national records, and the Government should, there- fore, take charge of them, and deal with them in such a way that their continuance and safe custody would be guaranteed, and access would become easy, and a matter of right instead of a favour. CURIOSUS II.

PARISH REGISTERS (11 S. xi. 397). The Croston Register (Lancashire), 1538- 1685, has now been restored to its parish chest, and has been printed by the Lanca- shire Parish Register Society. But who is Mr. Wake of Fritchley, bookseller, and is it known how he got possession of the Register ? HENRY BRIERLEY.

Wigan.

" THE TUNE THE OLD COW DIED OF " (11

S. xi. 248, 309, 443). As suggested at the last reference, Neil Gow was not a piper, but a fiddler, and the foremost master of his day in his own particular line. His " bow- hand " was unique, and easily detected when he was associated with other performers. Once at a public competition he won the prize, the adjudicator remarking that he " could distinguish the stroke of Neil's bow among a hundred players." With com- paratively little tuition he became an un- rivalled player of strathspeys and reels, and for long was indispensable as musical leader at great parties in Perth, Edinburgh, Dum- fries, Cupar, and other chief towns of the country. Besides his ' Farewell to Whisky,' he composed a large number of melodies, for one of which, ' Locherroch Side,' Burns wrote the touching lyric, "Oh! stay, sweet warbling woodlark, stay." Neil's son Nathaniel, friend of Sir Walter Scott, and also an expert violinist, published numerous compositions by his father, along with many more by himself and others. Neil was born