NOTES AND QUERIES. [9- s. XL MAY 2, im
some one alluded to the difficulty of the languag and the impossibility of repeating it. 'No, no so!' answered he, 'that child' (pointing to me ' could say it Can't you ? ' I know not why, but i caught my attention, and I immediately repeate it verbatim ; nor has it ever been put on pape until now. His extacy, and his noise, knew n bounds ; he called me to him, put me on his knee patted my back till it was scarlet, then called out ' Will nobody give the child half-a-crown ? Goo child ! ' Upon which Lord Lyttelton, the length historian of Henry II. dressed in a complete sui of almost white velvet, and with a long sword b his side rose gradually to a height I remembe thinking enormous, and in the most graceful marine presented me with a half-crown ; which I said should keep for his sake, and which I have at thi moment by me."
W. A. Cox.
" GOES " = PORTIONS OF LlQUOR. The fol
lowing account of the origin of the phras " Goes of spirits " is taken, with no specia faith, from a scarce and curious volume en titled ' The Memoirs of J. Decastro, Comedian (here follows a tremendous title), edited bj R. Humphreys (London, Sherwood, Jones & Co., 1824), a work remarkable in this, among other respects, that though it gives a life o: Philip Astley, an account of the Surrey and Sadler's ^ Wells Theatres, and much other information, it scarcely mentions the man whose memoirs it professes to supply :
" The Origin of ' Goes ' and ' Stays.' The tavern called the 'Queen's Head,' in Duke's Court, Bow Street, was once kept by a facetious individual, of the name of Jupp. Two celebrated characters, Annesley Shay and B9b Todrington, a sporting man (caricatured by Old Dighton, and nicknamed by him the knowing one, from his having converted to his own use a large sum of money intrusted to him by the noted ' Dick England,' who was compelled to fly the country, having sl^t Mr. Rolls in a duel, which had a fatal termination), met one evening at the above place, went to the bar, and asked for half-a-quartern each with a little cold water. In the course of time they drank four-and-twenty, when Shay said to the other, ' Now we'll go.' ' no, replied he ; 'we '11 have another, and then go.' I his did not satisfy the Hibernians, and they con- tinued drinking on till three in the morning, when they both agreed to go, so that under the idea of going they made a long stay, and this was the origin of drinking goes : but another, determined to eke out the measure his own way, used to call for a quartern at a time, and these, in the exercise of his humour he called stays." Pp. 205-6.
[The 'H.E.D.' quotes an instance of "ooes of brandy and water * in 1799.]
HISTORIC TREE ON FIRE. It will not be without interest to reproduce in * N. & Q ' the following, drawn from the Yorkshire Post of 10 April : -
" Queen's Oak, in the parish of Grafton Regis, Northamptonshire, one of the most celebrated trees in the country, was seriously damaged by fire on
Wednesday. This ancient oak, which stands within Grafton Park, is traditionally the tree under which Elizabeth Woodville, the widow of Baron Grey of Groby, awaited the youthful King Edward to plead for the restoration to her of her husband's forfeited estates. Edward, struck with her beauty, married her privately at Grafton, and acknowledged her publicly as his wife four months afterwards. For the last 200 years the oak has been jealously pre- served. The tree was very much disfigured, but it is not believed that its stability has been im- paired."
MARRIAGE SERMON. The following para- graph is taken from the Daily Mail of 8 April. It reports a custom which does not appear to have been noted in the columns of * N. & Q.' ; I therefore send it for publication therein :
"A charity founded in 1715 by the then Lord of the Manor of Twyning, Tewkesbury, provides for an annual sermon on April 6, the subject of which must be marriage. The preacher receives 11. , the parish clerk 5s., while 31. 10s. is divided among the congregation. Some eighty persons attended this year, seventy-one of whom claimed a share. The preacher for the past five years has been a bachelor."
EVERARD HOME COLEMAN. 71, Brecknock Road.
THE MAGI. The identity of the Magi mentioned in Matthew ii. 1 has puzzled many readers and commentators on the New Tes- tament. My learned friend the Rev. Dr. L. C. Casartelli has reprinted from the Dublin Review of October, 1902, an interesting " foot- note" (as he modestly styles it), extending to eighteen pages, in which the problem is reviewed. Magi was undoubtedly the name ^iven to the priests of the Mazdean religion, of which Zoroaster is regarded as the founder. 3rigirially the word appears to have been the name of a Median tribe to which Zoro- aster may have belonged. Later the word took an unfavourable meaning, and became associated with the idea of wonder-working and soothsaying, and survives in u magic " md "magician." Magus occurs in the Vul- gate, but not in the Hebrew text. It is found n the Septuagint of Daniel. It is generally used in an unfavourable sense, but this is not he case with the passage in Matthew, which )r. Casartelli thinks it would be justifiable o translate, "Behold some Mazdean priests rorn the East arrived in Jerusalem." Whilst here have been many explanations, there is i strong patristic tradition that the Magi ame from Persia. The Syrians thought they were twelve in number, but the West holda o three. A later development has trans- ormed them into kings and supplied them rith a numerous retinue. The early repre- entations of the Magi in the catacombs epresent them in Persian dress. Barhe-