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Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 9.djvu/181

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racecourse on the Roodee at Chester, for the four days of the Chester May meeting. The races were then in the afternoons, and the shows were sought after by the children in the mornings.

T. CANN HUGHES, M.A., F.S.A. Lancaster.

PORTRAITS OF EARLY LORD MAYORS (9 th S. viii. 485). On 26 April, 1840, Mr. William Smith sold at his great rooms, 73, New Bond Street, the following lot No. 650, to Mr. Molton, Printseller, Pall Mall. It was de- scribed as

" Lord Mayors A View of all the Right Honour- able the Lord Mayors of this Honourable City of London, &c., beginning at the first year (1558) of Her Majesty's Happy Raigne and continued unto this present Yeare 1601. Printed at London for William Jaggard and Thomas Pauyer, and are to be sold at his House in Cornhill, at the Signe of the Cat and two Parots, 1601. Portraits in \Vood, of all the Lord Mayors during the Reign of Elizabeth, with Historical Accounts under each. A highly interesting series of prints, in fine Condition and presumed to be Unique. From the Gulston Col- lection."

It would be very fortunate if the name of the present possessor could be ascertained.

EVERARD HOME COLEMAN. 71, Brecknock Road.

Thereare numerous portraits of Lord Mayors belonging to the City companies and other owners. Many of them have been engraved, and I have about sixty in my collection, starting from Fitz-Alwine, first Lord Mayor, 1199, down to recent times. J. D. FRY.

Hadley Hurst, Barnet.

A LINE OF BROWNING (9 th S. ix. 47). In reply to the query as to the meaning of the words

Like the aimless, helpless, hopeless, did I drivel- Being who ?

I would suggest, to begin with, that the

Eunctuation is bad. The comma after " hope- )ss " is unnecessary, as is also the dash after " Being." Even the dash before ' Being " is not grammatically necessary, but is doubt- less inserted to show that there is a pause for deliberation before asking the two final words of the question. It seems to me that the passage would be best printed thus : Like the aimless, helpless, hopeless did I drivel? Being who ?

Thus punctuated it may be freely para- phrased : "Did I drivel like the aimless, helpless, and hopeless 1 And this, too, when I was such a man as what shall I say?" The passage is very concise, and is only one of many instances of how the lack of mental discipline in early life induced in Browning a

habit of putting into words that cannot be clearly understood by his readers thoughts that were quite clear to himself. So far as my experience of him goes, I find the diffi- culty of interpretation is frequently enhanced by bad punctuation. If from such passages one eliminates the stops and proceeds to translate into Latin or Greek, one finds the connexion between the words becomes much clearer. In the above passage " who " is used as equivalent to the Latin " qualis," not " quis " ; and the present participle " being " agrees with "I." The third stanza is an answer to the query contained in the last two words of the second. In effect, he asks of himself : ' ' What sort of man am I really ? " and then replies :

One who never turned his back but marched breast forward.


The poet confesses that he drivelled like the aimless, helpless, and hopeless, and was, all the while, he cannot, or will not, at once say who. He leaves the answer to the reader. After a little pause, we learn from verse 3 that he is

One who never turned his back but marched breast forward,

und so weiter, as the Germans say.


JAMES THE DEACON AND AYSGARTH (9 th S. viii. 359, 488). I was, of course, aware of the supposed connexion of James the Deacon with Aikbar, but it is not clear that Ayksbarghe of the 'Monasticon' is Aikbar. Aikbar is now in the parish of Fingal, in which parish, as in Patrick Brompton, Hawkswell, and most of the neighbouring parishes, Jervaulx Abbey owned property ; but there is an entry in the 'Valor Eccle- siasticus' of the payment by the abbey, "Rector' de Patrik Brompton p' pens' sua exeunt' de decim' de Ayksbarghe ll. 13s. 4d " This would seem to connect Ayksbarghe rather with Patrick Brompton. But even supposing Ayksbarghe to be Aikbar, and not Aysgarth, there remain the Domesday form Echescard, the Patent Roll of 1397 Ayksgarth, the ' Valor Ecclesiasticus,' 1536, Aykscarth and Ayscarth, and Spelman's 'Villare Angli- cum,' 1655, Ayskarth, all of which refer without a doubt to Aysgarth ; and if Ayksbarghe is to be Jakesbargh, then very well also may Ayksgarth be Jakesgarth, as I believe it is. I was aware also that Canon Isaac Taylor de- rived Aysgarth from Asgard : " Asgardby and Aysgarth, however, probably refer to Asgard, the home of the gods" (' Words and Places/ 222, od. 1896). And on p. Ill he refers to the