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Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 11.djvu/494

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486


NOTES AND QUERIES. [9* s. XL JUNE 20, IMS.


children if any of the said Dona Pacifico may be entitled under the said enquiry Notice is hereby given that any persons claiming to be children of the said Dona Pacifico or any other persons claim- ing to be entitled under the said enquiry are by their Solicitors on or before the 7th day of July 1903 to come in and prove their claims at the Chambers of Mr. Justice Farwell and Mr. Justice Swinfen Eady at the Royal Courts of Justice Strand London England or in default thereof they will be peremp- torily excluded from the benefit of the said Order.

' Tuesday the 14th day of July 1903 at 11.30 o'clock in the forenoon at the said Chambers is appointed for hearing and adjudicating upon the claims.

"Dated the 21st day of May 1903.

"J. C. Fox Master."

It completes the history of Don Pacifico, whose claims in the middle of the last century almost brought about war between this country and France, and evoked in Parlia- ment the finest speech of Lord Palmerston and the last of Sir Robert Peel.

POLITICIAN.

MRS. SAMUEL PEPYS. Apropos of the bi centenary of the death of Pepys, I have been lately foraging amongst my books for refer- ences to the immortal diarist. In my search for notes on his burial-place I consulted, inter alia, Godwin and Britton's 'Churches of London' (1838). It is actually a fact that although these erudite authors devote ten pages of vol. i. to a description of the church of St. Olave, Hart Street, they say not a word about the divine Samuel. Only once does the name Pepys occur. Most of the ^ monuments in the church receive a passing notice, and that to the memory of Mrs. Samuel Pepys is dismissed in the following perfunctory manner : " Above this [the Bayning monument on the north side of the altar] is a monument in memory of a part of the Pepys family." It may be quite correct to call a man's wife a part of his family, but it is hard to discover why such an out-of-the-way expression should be used in this instance. If intended as an attempt to mystify people, it might possibly meet with a large measure of success.

JOHN T. PAGE.

West Haddon, Northamptonshire.

WORDSWORTH. The appearance of Prof. Raleigh's original and stimulating mono- graph on Wordsworth is a significant fact. The book shows that, despite all that has been written from Coleridge and Jeffrey and Wilson to Myers and Shairp and R, H. Button, it is still possible to study the poet from an independent point of view. The inportance it attaches, moreover, to some of the minor poems and even to ' Peter Bell ' and others that have more commonly pro-


voked ridicule than consideration should give pause to those iconoclasts who would read Wordsworth, as Lowell suggested and Matthew Arnold believed practicable, only in a small volume of elegant extracts. The genuine student of Wordsworth's verse can- not afford to miss any of his moods, and he will find adequate reasons for this critical conclusion in Prof. Raleigh's book. Mean- while, it is curious to contrast the attention the poet is at length receiving with the hostility and neglect accorded him by his contemporaries. Jeffrey's attitude is noto- rious, but the treatment meted out to 'The Excursion' by another distinguished Edin- burgh scholar is probably less generally known. According to De Quincey, who was much about Edinburgh in his latter years, Dr. Irving, librarian of the Advocates' Library, and faithful historian of Scottish poetry, consigned Wordsworth's great philo- sophical poem to the cellar of the institution of which he was the honoured head. In his 'Memorial Chronology,' published in vol. xvi. of his collected works as issued by Messrs. A. & C. Black, De Quincey states that there used to be at the Advocates' Library " a large clothes-basket, or rag -basket," into which useless books were dropped as they were received, and "at stated intervals the basket was transferred to subterraneous vaults, and never again visited by any inquest but that of rats." To emphasize this assertion the essayist incontinently writes a characteristic foot-note as follows :

"It is a curious fact, and worth recording amongst the delicice and facetice of literature, especially because it serves to measure the enormous revolutions continually going on in the vast worlds of opinion and taste, that Wordsworth's ' Excur- sion' was amongst the books condemned to the basket, and did actually in that honourable con- veyance go down to Hades. Under whose award, I am not certain ; but, as I heard, of Dr. Irving, the chief librarian at that time."

If this is a fact, it has a distinct chrono- logical interest, as De Quincey suggests ; if it is only one of the elaborate jokes to which the writer was prone, it is certainly defensible as apposite to his argument, although somewhat hard on the librarian in question. Perhaps MR. STRONACH may be able to throw some light on the subject, and especially to say whether or not Irving's view of Wordsworth's merits was correctly reported to De Quincey. THOMAS BAYNE.

1 THE ENGLISH DIALECT DICTIONARY.' (See ante, p. 298.) It is a mistake common to works of this kind to localize dialect words too strictly. Very few, if any, of those noted