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Page:Notes and Queries - Series 12 - Volume 10.djvu/288

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234 NOTES AND QUERIES. [ijs.x.MA.is,i*. ject are in the library of the Royal Colonial Institute, and I shall be pleased to show them at any time to MB. WILLIS. EVANS LEWIN, Librarian. The adventurer in question called himself j " Sir Gregor MacGregor," and some account : of him will be found in the ' D.N.B.' He ! had served in the British Army, but in the j war of Spanish -American Independence | went out to Columbia with an expedition j fitted out in this country to assist the | insurgents. It was due to the protest of the ! Spanish Government against this expedi- tion being permitted to sail that the first Foreign Enlistment Act was passed. Mac- Gregor distinguished himself by his bravery ' in the field, and became a general in the Venezuelan Army in 1817. After the com- j pletion of Venezuelan Independence he promoted a scheme for colonization on the Mosquito Coast on the east side of Central America, and described himself as " His Highness Gregor, Cazique of Poyais." The colonization scheme was a failure, but I do not think it was correctly described as | a fraud. MacGregor was a man of ambition j who desired to found a new state. After his failure he returned to Venezuela, where j in 1839 he was restored to his rank of General. He died at Caracas. R. S. PENGELLY. 12, Poynders Road, Clapham Park. TEMPORARY FORDS : " SAND " (12 S. x. 167). I do not know Burringham, but know other parts of Lincolnshire. It may be safely assumed that people did notj go very far for the material with which they made the temporary ford, and had to clear away the obstruction as soon as possible, j Probably the water was stagnant in the j ditch or dyke for the time being, and the ford was not in an expose'd situation. In a place like Sunk Island, in Holderness, close to the Humber mouth and exposed to heavy waves, sea banks are built up with material dug in situ from behind the bank, the sea face of which is protected by chalk from quarries situated higher up the estuary. The " sand " in this case is warp, that is, Humber mud, a mixture of clay and sand. L. L. K. WILLIAM MEYLER (12 S. x. 190) died March 10, 1821, aged 65, in Abbey Church- yard, Bath ; proprietor of The Bath Herald and one of the magistrates and senior com- mon councilmen of that city. He was a clever writer of small pieces of poetry and published in 1806 a volume of ' Poetical Amusements.' A. ALBRIGHT. USE OF " AT " OR " IN " WITH PLACE- NAMES (12 S. x. 170). Although it may be the fashion now to say that an event took place " in London," it was the common practice once to use the more definite preposition "at." A letter to Gabriel Harvey ends " from my lodgings at London thys 10 of Aprill 1579," and the title page of Marlowe's 'Edward the Second' (1594) has the words " imprinted at London for William Jones dwelling neare Holborne Conduit." Similarly, too. of Shakespeare's Sonnets (1609) and of several of his plays. Thomas Birch, writing of Chaucer in 1743, says " He died at London." All this time London was a city of a reasonable size, with boundaries that were pretty well known. But when it became the great, amorphous monster that it is, sprawling with all its inelegant and un- certain length over three or four counties, then people began to say that this or that event happened in London, so vast and so vague were its outlines. ' How many of its denizens know nowadays where London begins and where it ends ? Is Poplar London ? Is West Kensington ! The ordinary citizen may have one notion ; the Post Office official has another ; the Parliamentary canvasser a third. These different conceptions of London there are nineteen of them altogether, I believe may impress us by reason of their variety and their number, but they do not make for lucidity. T. PERCY ARMSTRONG. The Authors' Club, Whitehall, 8.W. The following is an extract from the ' N.E.D.' under " at " : 2. With proper names of places : Particularly used of all towns, except the capital of our own country, and that in which the speaker dwells (if of any size). . . . Formerly used more widely : at Ireland, at London. Some of the quotations given in the dictionary are : " A.D. 755, at Wintan- ceastre (Winchester) ; 1258, at Lundene (London) ; 1387, at Ireland ; 1742, at London (from Pamela}:' I generally use " in " with names of places which are, or were in former days, surrounded by walls, like London, Hull, Newcastle, Paris, Vienna. L. L. K. Your correspondent RAVEN notes that we always say " in London," never " at London " ; "at Leamington," not " in