Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 5.djvu/460

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NOTES AND QUERIES. [9 th s. v. JUNE 9, 1900.


they wanted a cinquefoil they might hav copied the primrose, but when they clesignet a quatrefoil they did not have recourse to " five-leaved " flower. Besides, this kind o embellishment is by no means confined t< Perpendicular work, but is frequently me with in the Decorated period.

Three pages previous to this is the follosv ing note :

" Sir was used as English for * Dominus,' th University Latin title bestowed upon a B.A. ; anc hence transferred to clergymen generally, as b> Shakespeare, in ' Midsummer Night's Dream,' tc Sir Hugh Evans."

Has the study of Shakespeare so declinec in England that even a printer's boy does not know that there is no clergyman in the ' Midsummer Night's Dream ' ?

The publication of parochial histories is commendable, but care should be taken that such inaccuracies as the above should not blemish what are generally interesting local records. W. L. RADFORD.

WORKMEN'S CHEAP RAILWAY TICKETS. The following passage occurs in * The Companion to the British Almanack,' 1848, p. 240 :

" The Eastern Counties Railway Company, some time ago, offered to one of the societies which have taken up the subject, that if the society would build cottages for working men in the neighbourhood of Stratford-le-Bow, they (the Company) would convey the workmen by railway, to and from London, for a charge (we believe) of only a halfpenny per day each."

The passage occurs in the course of the annual article on * Public Improvements,' the particular matter dealt with at the moment being the erection of houses for the working classes. This is very probably the first sug- gestion of a system which has enormously increased during recent years. R. B. P.

TAVISTOCK CHAPEL. The episcopal chapels of London, so numerous in the first quarter of the century (Leigh's * New Picture of London,' published in 1824, specifies no fewer than fifty- nine), are rapidly vanishing from our midst. A few months ago the disappearance of Curzon Chapel, Mayfair, was chronicled in the pages of ' N. & Q.' (ante, p. 65) ; the latest victim of the destroying angel is the once fashionable Tavistock Chapel. Of this place of worship and some of the adjoining houses condemned to the same fate the Daily News of 11 May says :

" St. Andrew's Chapel, in Tavistock Place, Tavistock Square, W.C., is being pulled down, together with some adjacent houses, one of which was once the residence of two distinguished men. But for that matter, the street has had many dis- tinguished residents, and one resident that was notorious whose name was Mary Anne Clarke


who, among other things not conducive to a ^ reputation, made great profit out of the sale of officers' commissions. The chapel was erected something like ninety years ago, and at the time when it was built was much talked of as a fine ex- ample of Gothic art. It has seen many vicissitudes, and of late years has been devoted to various kinds of mere worldly uses. At one time it was the church of Archdeacon Dunbar, and was well filled by a congregation in love with a musical and advanced form of ritual. On the site of the chapel there are to be flats. Mrs. Clarke lived for a time at No. 31, Tavistock Place, and at No. 32. one of the houses now being demolished, lived Francis Douce, the antiquary, who died in 1834, and left a sealed box of supposed literary treasures to the Trustees of the British Museum, which was not to be opened until the year 1900. The box has been opened and found to contain nothing of value. John Gait also lived in the same house after Douce, and in it wrote his autobiography and many of his literary works, in- cluding a ' Life of Byron.' ' Old and New London ' says Douce and Gait lived at No. 34, but that has been since the time it was built a chemist's shop principally anyway, this house is being demolished. The first is the more probable number, as it was that of a large private house. No. 37, where Sir Francis Baily, President of the Astronomical Society, who in 1851 ascertained the weight of the earth, once lived, and after him Sir Matthew Digby Wyatt used to reside, has, with its neighbour, jiven place to the Passmore Institute."

G. YARROW BALDOCK. 18, Groombridge Road, South Hackney, N.E.

JOHNSON'S BIRTHPLACE. The following nteresting record, abridged from the Bir- mingham Daily Post of 10 May, seems worthy of insertion in ' N. & Q.':

" At a quarterly meeting of the Lichfield City Council last evening it was agreed to purchase Dr.

Samuel Johnson's birthplace in Market Square, liichfield, for 250/. The antiquity of the house was said to be undoubted. It came into the possession )f the Johnson family in 1707, and the ancient title

deeds and muniments contained the autographs of lot only Michael and Samuel Johnson, but of Sir Toshua Reynolds, Sir John Hawkins, and William

Scott, afterwards Lord Stowell. In 1708 a lease of sertain encroachments made on a small portion of /he property was granted to Michael Johnson, ather of the Doctor, who was closely connected

with the Corporation under the old regime, serving he office of sheriff in 1709, junior bailiff in 1718, enior bailiff in 1725, and being for a considerable >eriod a magistrate for the city. The property was mrchased at the cost of 800/. by public auction in 887 by Mr. J. H. Johnson, of Southport, and West jindeth, Silverdale, a namesake, but not a relative f the family. That gentleman had restored it on ts original lines, and now that he was dead his rustees had handed it over to the Corporation as a

nemorial, at the nominal sum of 250/."

F. J. OVERTON.

" PROOSHAN BLUE " IN * PICKWICK.' In this onnexion (see * Pickwickian Studies,' ante, . 57), the blue with which the " wash- woman" f my early days " blued " the water when