Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 10.djvu/142

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134


NOTES AND QUERIES. [9 th s. x. A. ie, 1902.


apparently sums up the present matter. I shall be glad to learn whether my informa- tion is correct. H. P. L.

" FLAPPER," ANGLO-INDIAN SLANG (9 th S. ix. 260, 373, 455). An instrument exactly similar to that described at the last reference is in constant use during the summer by one of the butchers in this village.

JOHN T. PAGE.

West Haddon, Northamptonshire.

I understand that at flapper is a little duck this, then, is why a young girl may be termed a flapper. ST. SWITHIN.

I have always heard a young wild duck called a flapper. About ten years ago I heard the name applied as a slang term to girls of sixteen or seventeen years of age. I have not heard it before or since, but it was used by a rather " fast " young man of my acquaintance. F. R. R.

VARIOUS LENGTHS OF THE PERCH (3 rd S. ii. 213, 296, 376, 437 j 4 th S. iii. 360, 4461 In a copy of the 1510 edition (Wynkyn de Worde) of ' The boke of iustyces of peas ' in the Bod- leian, of which the press-mark is " Rawlinson, 4, 457," are a series of notes, made apparently in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Among them is the following :

" Notandum est quod Dominus Henricus de Lacy Comes Lincolnise constituit perticam istius Dominii continentem xxj pedes de pedibus suis propriis, qusequidem pertica non continet de assisa Regis Anglise nisi xviij pedes et dimidium et vnum polli- cem. Et pertica ilia fit mensuratio terrarum et bosoorum et vastorum et omnium quae mensurantur in ista Ex[ten]ta."

The above is in a seventeenth - century hand ; the copy of an extent referred to has disappeared. Is it possible to ascertain whether the Earl of Lincoln (presumably the Henry de Lacy born c. 1250, ob. 1311) really made such a " constitution," and over how large an area it was binding ? O. O. H.

" MERESTEADS " OR " MESESTEADS " (9 th S. ix. 248, 437 ; x. 9, 53). It is not the fact that " messuage" is " due to the Latin manere" It is due, as I have already proved (9 th S. v. 349, 520 ; vi. 122), to the Latin mensus, participle of metiri, to measure. The prefix mess- in mess-uage is the same word as mess, a measure or portion, as in the phrases " a mess of pot- tage," or "a meeas of ale," as they say in South Yorkshire. I have before (9 th S. vi. 162) referred to a document, quoted by Du Cange, in which an allowance of a mesagium panis i.e., a mess or measure of bread, weigh- ing five pounds is made to each of certain monks.


During the last year 1 have met with many confirmations of the conclusion at which I had arrived. It is quite a common thing in Latin documents relating to England and elsewhere to find a messuage described as mensura. Thus a grant of two mensuroe is recorded in 'Rotuli Chartarum,' p. 124 b. Again, it appears from Hatfield's 'Survey' (Surtees Soc.) that four men held, as tenants in common, twenty-two acres of arable land, together with a mensura, in Wydop.* Occa- sionally the messuage is described as maisura i.e., measure. t That tofts, building-plots, or messuages in villages and cities were regularly measured, and were mostly uniform in length, can be proved by many extracts from old records.* It is obvious that a mens-ura, mais- ura, or mess-iiage was a measured plot of land. If more evidence were needed, I would point to the fact that in the ' Whitby Chartulary,' published by the Surtees Society (i. 198), messuagiwm is used as identical in meaning with malwagium. Here the prefix mal- in mal-wagium translates the prefix mess- in mess-uagium, and is the old Norse mal, a measure. In Norway, according to Ivar Aasen's ' Norsk Ordbog,' maal means not only " measure," but " measured piece of land."

It is true that the French " maison repre- sents the Latin mansionem." But it does not follow from this that mansio in old surveys is connected with manere, or that it means " a dwelling-place." It is quite as likely to be a late form of mensio, a measure. The minutce mansiones at York mentioned in Domesday Book are possibly "small measures."

I am glad that C. 0. B. has discovered that William Bradford, Governor of the colony at Plymouth, came from Austerfield, near Bawtry. Austerfield is in South Yorkshire, and is about twenty-five miles from Royston, where I found the word meadstead, and about thirty-five miles from Dewsbury, where Mr. Chad wick found the word meestead or neastead in the Court Rolls. S. O. ADDY.

O AND ITS PRONUNCIATION (9 th S. x. 48). The pronunciation of " God " as Gaud, to whatever it may bo due, is no new thing. A harsh critic might possibly say it was a sanctimonious drawl, but it is kinder to suppose it due to a mistaken feeling of

  • "Tenuerunt inter se xxij acraa terrse cum

mensura in Wydop."

f " Homo obiit in quadam maisura." ' Rotuli Hundredorum,' ii. 175 a.

Thus we have " Toftum unum xij perticarum in latitudine, et longitudine quantum torta aliorum hominum." ' Whitby Chartulary,' i. 179.