Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 10.djvu/374

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NOTES AND QUERIES. [9< s. x. NOV. s, 1902.

first saw them ; and flying in long lines with their double lights they do produce an effect similar to that of the long processions of the watch at Havana."

It is, of course, possible that the little boy may have been repeating a remark made by one of his elders ; but 'if it was original, as the above writer takes it to be, the coinci- dence is certainly remarkable.


[See Athenaeum, 12, 19, and 26 July, pp. 63, 94, 127.]

THE LONG GALLERY AT HOLYROOD. SIR DAVID OSWALD HUNTER-BLAIR, under the heading of ' The Evolution of a Nose,' ante, p. 236, speaking of the portraits at Bad- minton, says :

" Whether these portraits are really more faith- ful likenesses than those of the early Scottish kings in the Long Gallery at Holyrood (said to have been all the handiwork of a single Dutch artist) I have no means of knowing."

Writing of the Long Gallery, Mr. John Rankin, Keeper of the Chapel Royal, says in his book :

It is hung round with portraits of a hundred reputed kings of Scotland, from the misty times of Fergus I. down to the end of the Stuart dynasty, which were painted by a Fleming named James de Witt.* Several of these paintings were slashed by the sabres of Hawley's valiant dragoons after their defeat at Falkirk, but were subsequently repaired. This apartment is historically interesting from having been used by the Pretender as a ballroom during his occupation of Holyrood. It is the room in which the great ball was given, so familiar to the admirers of ' Waverley,' and to such visitors its floor will still seem to be trod by the unfortunate Prince, the bold, devoted Fergus M'lvor, the noble, high-minded Flora, and the gentle, woman-like Rose Bradwardine. Since the Union it has been the scene of the elections of the Scottish represen- tative peers, and is also used for the levees of the Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland."

The names of the kings and the dates of their accession are all given on the pictures of the enterprising De Witt. The spectator looking at these works of art (?), if he or she has the wish and the patience to do so, wonders whether the painter or the Govern- ment or the " originalls " supplied this infor- mation. One hundred and ten royal portraits

"* The contract by James de Witt with the Government in February, 1684, for the painting of these pictures, still exists. De Witt became bound to paint 110 portraits in two years, he supplying the canvas and colours ; and the Government, on their part, agreed to pay him 120/. sterling yearly, and to supply him with the ' Originalls ' from which he was to copy. This contract, and other documents connected with it, appeared in volume Third of the ' Bannatyne Miscellany.' "

in two years for 240Z. in all must constitute a record in more ways than one.


46, Marlborough Avenue, Hull.

THE CENTRIFUGAL RAILWAY. An early example of what is now known as the " Topsy - Turvy Railway " or " Looping the Loop" was exhibited at Dubourg's "Mechani- cal Theatre" circa 1840. G. E. Mogridge ('Old Humphrey's Walks in London and its Neighbourhood, 'London, 1843) thus describes the astonishing spectacle :

" The little man with the great spear, who shows ^ff the exhibition, has explained to us the several

groups He has now produced a sensation by

stamping his spear heavily on the floor to arrest our attention, and announcing that the car is about to move in rapid career along the centrifugal railway. It is done : first a pail of water, next a hundred- weight piece of metal, and, lastly, a human being, one of the attendants, having in succession passed down the inclined plane, round the circle in the centre, and afterwards ascended the opposite steep. The water was unspilt, the weight unmoved, and the attendant uninjured, though he passed round the upright circle, head over heels, performing a complete summerset, at the rate, as the little man tells us, of a hundred miles an hour."

Walford mentions a " Duburg's " Exhibition that in 1818-30 was on view at 68, Lower Grosvenor Street, containing cork models of ancient temples, &c. Perhaps this is the same building that afterwards became "The Saloon of Art " or " Mechanical Theatre " described at some length by Mogridge.


WE must request correspondents desiring infor- mation on family matters of only private interest to affix their names and addresses to their queries, in order that the answers may be addressed to them direct.

WATER BAROMETER. In a diary kept by the late Rev. Dr. Sutton, of Norwich, under date of 7 Sept., 1801, occurs the following passage :

"Speaking of barometers the other day, Mr. Styleman said he remembered at Trinity College (Cambridge), within side of the King's Gate, one which worked with water instead of quicksilver, and that it was 34ft. long. Qy. if this was not erected by Roger Cotes ? "

I shall be much obliged if any of your readers can give me information about the barometer, when and by whom erected, and when removed. The Mr. Styleman mentioned was the Rev. Armine Styleman, rector of Ringstead, Norfolk. He died in 1803, and was, I believe, then an old man ; he most