Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 9.djvu/122

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NOTES -AND QUERIES. [9 th s. ix. FEB. s, 1002.

("London [is] a big city, twenty times more big than Colosvar ").

HENRY GERALD HOPE. 119, Elms Road, Clapham, S.W.

THE OLDEST BOROUGH IN ENGLAND (9 th S, i x . 9)._ I believe Ripori claims this privilege, and alleges that it began in 886, and in this belief held a most gorgeous "Millenary Celebration" in August, 1886, which is beauti- fully and fully rendered in a volume published by Mr. William Harrison, of Ripon, in 1892. The earliest wakeman was James Percival in 1400, and the first charter is dated 26 June, 1604, under which Hugh Ripley, the last wake- man, was made first ma} 7 or.

Lancaster claims, and with justice, I think, to be the oldest town in the North, and possibly in England. There is in my custody as Town Clerk the earliest existing charter, that granted by the Earl of Moreton (after- wards King John) in 1193. A detailed account of this and our other charters, written by my predecessor and friend Mr. W. O. Roper, F.S.A., will be found in Archaeological Journal, Iv. 359-66, and in the Transactions of the Historic Society of Lancashire and Cheshire (vol. xxxv., O.S., 1-14). There are seventeen charters of Lancaster, many in beautiful condition and with rare seals. The town also possesses a fine seal, believed to be of the time of Henry III.

Your correspondent will, I hope, draw much information as to the charters of towns which may be older than Lancaster e.g., Winchester, York, Southampton but as its Town Clerk I shall require very strong proof before I admit any evidence more con- clusive than the grand old Moreton charter of the Burgh of the Camp on the Loyne Loynecaster.



Lostwithiel in Cornwall may or may not be the oldest borough in England, but it certainly ranks as one of the oldest.

There is in possession of the Corporation a charter by Robert de Cardinan, Ric. I., 1190- 1200,

"Quod ego Rob(ertus) de Cardinan dedi et con- cessi et hac present* carta eonfirmavi omnibus -burgensibus nieis et hominibus de Lostuuidiel," &c.

The report made by the Hist. MSS. Com' on the muniments of the borough (but not yet published) states that

"the wording and provisions of this deed are alike extremely interesting; they illustrate the first growth of a borough out of a village and manor by the grant of liberties by the private owner and lord which afterwards are confirmed and enlarged by the authority of the king."

There is also an Inspeximus by Edw. II. of a charter granted by Richard, Earl of Cornwall and King of the Romans, to the burgesses of Lostwythiel and Pen kneke, dated at Watling- ton, 13 July, 12th of his reign (1268).




viii. 463). I believe that the author is Rudyard Kipling and that the lines are not to be found in any "collection of poems." They occur as a pseudo-quotation in one of his short stories, called ' Mrs. Hauksbee Sits Out,' originally published, I think, as the Christmas number of one of the illustrated papers, and republished in 'Under the Deodars.'

The verses as they appear in the story are not consecutive, as conversation breaks in at intervals, but the poem as it stands is as follows :

Fair Eve knelt close to the guarded gate in the hush

of an Eastern spring, She saw the flash of the Angel's sword, the gleam of

the Angel's wing.

And because she was so beautiful, and because she

could not see How fair were the pure white cyclamens crushed

dying at her knee

He plucked a Rose from the Eden Tree where the four great rivers met.

And though for many a Cycle past that Rose in the

dust hath lain With her who bore it upon her breast when she

passed from grief and pain, There was never a daughter of Eve but once, ere the

tale of her years be done, Shall know the scent of the Eden Rose but once

beneath the sun ! Though the years may bring her joy or pain, fame,

sorrow or sacrifice, The hour that brought her the scent of the Rose,

she lived it in Paradise.

I should add that all editions of ' Under the Deodars' do not contain this story. I quote from the edition de luxe, vi. 68, 69.

E. R.

" MISCHIEF-NIGHT " (9 th S. ix. 48). The date for the mischievous practices is Hallow- e'en, 31 October, but at Leeds the celebrations of 5 November have evidently attracted without absorbing the mischief and the bonfires of the earlier date. The following tricks have been perpetrated to my know- ledge on "mischief-night." One custom is to ask at a cottage for a drink of water, and while the water is being fetched to stuff the hinge side of the door with mussel shells. Then when the water has been drunk,