Page:Notes and Queries - Series 12 - Volume 6.djvu/387

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12 s. vi. JUXE 19, i92o.i NOTES AND QUERIES.


v eocoamit, the milk of which has been -.removed and replaced by rum, or else 'tapping a cask by means of a straw, i.e., a "monkey pump." F. GORDON ROE.

EVANS OF THE STRAND (12 S. vi. 252, 281). Robert Harding Evans is said to have had for an aunt, Eleanor, wife of William Burton (born 1753, died 1785), one of Sir John Burton's brothers (v. ante, p. 313). Can any one supply exact details ? All I know of her is that she resided at Staplehurst until

&bout the time of a daughter's marriage in


G. F. R. B. asks for evidence that Thomas and William Evans were sons of Robert Harding Evans. Since they all belonged to my maternal ancestry, I think that this point is beyond dispute, although I am prepared to abate my claim that Charles Evans was at Westminster, as I cannot support it otherwise than by hearsay.


OLD CHINA (12 S. vi. 294). I believe that <this familiar army expression is analogous "to, if not directly derived from, the French chineur, which is alternatively a " slanderer " in military slang, a buyer of girls' hair in thieves' talk, or a hawker in popular phraseology. Albert Barriere gives it in his

  • Argot and Slang ' (London. 1889), together

<with chinois: equivalent of "bloke" and "cove"; a term of friendship between -soldiers, but of contempt when applied by them to civilians. As is usxial in such cases, the speaker's intention is denned by the tone of the voice. I think that the British army always employs "old china" in a friendly or bantering sense. F. GORDON ROE.

Arts Club, 40 Dover Street. W.I.

"China" is a contraction for "china plate " which is rhyming slang .for "mate." Thus " old china " is the same as " old /mate." RAYMOND LEE,

66 Hereford Eoad, W.2.

FINKLE STREET (12 S. v. 69. 109, 279; -vi. 25, 114, 176, 198). At the last reference your correspondent, Y. T., appears to consider that Winkle Street at Calbourne in the Isle of Wight owes its name to Danish influence. But, as a writer in the Quarterly Review for July, 1874, points out,

" incessant as were their descents, culminating in the terrible devastations of 1001, when fire and sword swept over the whole island, the Danes made no permanent settlement in Wight. Local (Nomenclature, that invaluable handmaid to

history, is here our guide ; and the entire absence of Danish elements in the names of places the bys, and holms, and thorps which are so abun- dant in the East of England, proves beyond question that the Danes came for booty, not for tillage, and looked on the island as a sojourning place, not as a home."

Nor does it seem at all necessary to attribute the name to the Danes. A reference to Bosworth's ' Anglo-Saxon and English Dictionary ' (London, J. R. Smith, 1881) shows that wincel, a corner, was a word used by our Anglo-Saxon iorefathers themselves, and therefore a satisfactory English origin can be found for Winkle Street at Calbourne, and this, in the general absence in the island of Danish elements in place-names, would appear to be the most probable explanation of it.


Westwood, Clitheroe.

FRANK BARBER, DR. JOHNSON'S BLACK SERVANT (12 S. vi. 296). Full details con- cerning this man are given by Mr. Aleyn Lyell Reacle in ' Johnsonian Gleanings,' part ii. This was privately printed for the author at the Arden Press, Oswalclestre House, Norfolk Street, in 1912.


The Firs, Norton, Worcester.

An elaborate monograph with illustra- tions is devoted to the above by Mr. Aleyn Lyell Reade in his ' Johnsonian Gleanings,' part 2, privately printed at the Arden Press, Oswaldestre House, Norfolk Street, Strand (1912). As " Frank the black " has been thus faithfully dealt with, I, as a member of Dr. Johnson's College, hope I may live to see an equally exhaustive monograph also with illustrations upon " Hodge, the mangy cat " !


DOCK-LEAVES AND NETTLE- STINGS (12 S, vi. 295). The custom of using dock-leavea as a cure or as an alleviation of the pain caused by nettle stings was quite a common one in Cornwall years ago and is probably still. The application was supposed not to be efficacious unless one repeated at the same time a couplet which I cannot now recollect. W. ROBERTS.

Dock-leaves have a certain cooling pro- perty probably due to the acid in them, which is, I presume, oxalic acid, the dock being related to the sorrel. The leaves, wetted with spring water, relieve to some extent the pain of burning. Formerly the