s. N 109., JAX. 30. '58.] NOTES AND QUERIES.
replaced on the lady's Lead, she expressed her obligations to the men, giving them each some money, and promised a piece of land (to be vested in certain persons in trust) to throw up a hood annually on old Christmas Day; she also ordered that the twelve men engaged to contest the race for the hood should be clothed (pro tem.) in scarlet jerkins and velvet caps: the hood to be thrown up in the same place as the one where she lost her's. The custom is yet followed; and though the Meeres on which she was riding has long ago been brought into a state of cultivation, and the road through been diverted, yet an old mill stands in the field where the old road passed through, and is pointed out as the place where the original scene took place, and the hood is usually thrown up from this mill. There is usually a great concourse of people from the neighbouring villages, who also take part in the proceedings; and when the hood is thrown up by the chief of the Boggons or by the officials, it becomes the object of the villagers to get the hood to their own village by throwing or kicking it, similar to the foot-ball the other eleven men, called Boggons, being stationed at the corners and sides of the field to prevent, if possible, its being thrown out of the field; and should it chance to fall into any of their hands it is "boggoned" and forthwith returned to the chief, who again throws it up from the mill as before. Whoever is fortunate enough to get it out of the field tries to get it to his village, and usually takes it to the public-house he is accustomed to frequent, and the landlord regales them with hot ale and rum. The game usually continues until dusk, and is frequently attended by broken shins and broken heads. I have known a man's leg broken. The next day is occupied by the boggons going round the villages singing as waits, and are regaled with hot furmenty; from some they get coppers given them, and from others a small measure of wheat, according to the means of the donors. The day after that they assume the character of plough bullocks, and at a certain part of Westwoodside they "smoke the fool," that is, straw is brought by those who like and piled on a heap, a rope being tied or slung over the branches of the tree next the pile of straw; the other end of the rope is fastened round the waist of the "fool," and he is drawn up, and fire is put to the straw, the "fool" being swung to and fro through the smoke until he is well nigh choked; after which he goes round with his cap and collects whatever the spectators think proper to give. After which the performance is at an end until the following year.
I shall be glad if the above information will suit your querist A. E. I forgot to say that the quantity of land left by Lady Mowbray was forty acres, which are known by the name of the Hoodlands, and that the Boggons' dresses and the hood are made from its proceeds.
(2nd S. iv. 453. 499.)
I was at Stonehenge in the autumn of 1854. The very intelligent old man who acts as a sort of guide there, and who told me he had never been a day absent from the temple for twenty-four years, did not, as well as I recollect, make any mention of a recent fall of any of the triliths; and as I made a long journey (from Carlisle) solely to visit Stonehenge, and spent some hours on that most interesting spot, I do not think, if he had mentioned so remarkable an occurrence, it would have escaped my memory. With respect to the much disputed name of Stonehenge, not being an Anglo-Saxon scholar, I venture into the contest with much diffidence : still, as the name is allowed to be of Saxon origin, and as " Staenene hengen " means a stone gallows in that language, I think we may get a "glimpse of truth." The stone gallows was, as is well known, a Saxon " insti- tution ; " and it seems to me not impossible that the Saxons, when they overran England, struck with the resemblance the triliths, then of course in a more perfect state, bore to their " domestic institution," may have called them by a name signifying the stone gallows. Of course any one who has visited the temple cannot for a moment suppose that the late Mr. Kemble, in his assertion that the stones were a grand set of gallows erected on some great occasion for the execution of a number of British chieftains, meant anything but a jeu d'esprit. (" N. & Q." 2 nd S. iii. 2.) If the triliths were set up as gallows, what was the inner circle of single stones set up for ? It is also a little curious that in the same paper a few lines before, he turns into ridicule the history of the murder of the British chieftains by llengisr, and immediately after gives it as his opinion that the stones were set up as the implements of a wholesale massacre of said British chieftains ! The " Gododin," the authenticity of which has been so fully established, seems to give the best account of what Stonehenge really was, viz. the great temple for the celebration of the Helio- Arkite worship ; that it was afterwards used as a place of solemn assembly : and that the famous or infamous massacre may have taken place there, as related by the traditions, is a matter the pro- bability of which those who are acquainted with British historical records and traditions, and who know how lotig Druidical customs have been mixed up with Christian observances among the ancient Britons and their descendants, may judge for themselves. FRANCIS ROBERT L)AVIES. Moyglas Mawr. [Mr. Kemble does not say they were "erected," but " served as gallowses " on some grand occasion. lie was discussing the name, and not the origin, of Stonehenge. ED. "N. &Q.]