Open main menu

Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 9.djvu/184

This page needs to be proofread.


176


NOTES AND QUERIES, p* s. ix. MARCH i, 1902.


Richmond, and depicts the presentation o the bill to a party of gentlemen after thej have dined. I believe the waiter is " from life," and I have heard that he afterward became the proprietor of the hotel.

JAS. CURTIS, F.S.A.

"HlGH-FALUTING" (9 th S. viii. 505). If

as D. K. T. says, this is by J. R. Lowe! deemed an "odious word," Lowell himsel nevertheless employs it in his 'Rebellion (' Political Essays '), when he says, speaking of ' The Southern History of the War/ by E. A Pollard, that " in point of style it is acuripu jumble of American sense and Southern high fainting" The word, meaning " tall talk," i thought by Dr. Brewer, in his 'Dictionary of Phrase and Fable/ to be from the Dutc" verlooten, high-flown, stilted.

J. HOLDEN MACMlCHAEL.

THE PARENTAGE OF C.ESAR BORGIA (9 th S viii. 524). Your correspondent MR. DAWE mispresents my treatment of this subject in ' Chronicles of the House of Borgia/ whicl obvious satura he, deluded by its preten tious form, has mistaken for an attemp at serious history. The narration of Varilla is cited there as "an extraordinary story, "an extremely probable tale," "in the absence of anything more authoritative ......the most probable solution," a narra

tion which "deserves consideration as a con tribution to the solving of the mysterie: of the unquenchable hatred of Dellarover< for Borgia, and of Duke Cesare's relation: with the Lord Alexander P.P. VI." If MR DAWES had studied my gallimaufry he woulc have failed to find terms more absolute than these. Varillas is offered for what he i; worth. He may be a slipshod historian m proverbially discredited "(Hallam); but he is not esteemed a deliberately malignant liar like Infessura or Guicciardini, for example. At all events, I myself am not solicitous to compurge him, if MR. DAWES can give me cause for incredulity in the present in- stance : otherwise Varillas's tale will remain for me "humanly probable." I wrote the 'Chronicles' "vnder correction of benyuo- lence " certainly but I deem it inconvenient that a member of my tribe (corvus monedula) imperfectly informed of my writings, should intend himself as cavillator. Nihilcumjidibus gracculo. FREDERICK BARON CORVO.

MOAT'S ' STENOGRAPHY ' (9 th S. ix. 29)

Moat's system of stenography, as developed

m his ' Shorthand Standard ' of 1833, has

long been virtually obsolete, though copies

>r the work are by no means rare. Any col-


lector may procure one without much effort for a few shillings. It is an able and scholarly work, but as a shorthand treatise is much too elaborate ever to have been widely popular. MR. JESSON is mistaken in his assumption that most modern systems are based upon it. It is constructed upon what is known as the stave or bar principle, intro- duced by Samuel Richardson in 1800, specially ruled books having to be provided for the reporter who desires to turn it to the best possible account. Without the lines it can only be used at an immense disadvan- tage in the matter of speed. Of the nearly two hundred systems and modifications of systems that had been published prior to 1833, not more than five were then used to any extent, the authors of these being Gurney (in reality Mason), Byrom, Mavor, Taylor, and Lewis. Since then three hun- dred odd additional systems have been given to the world, and only some two or three of these have borne any resemblance to Moat's. One Eneas Mackenzie, who published a cheap treatise on the stenographic art about 1838, adopted Moat's alphabet without the staves, but probably only few ever succeeded in mastering the art as he presented it. The basis of Pitman's, with most of the other modern systems, is phonetic, and that most certainly Moat's was not. Of his career no- thing seems to be known. His name finds no place in the 'Dictionary of National Bio- graphy/ and the shorthand historians know nothing of him beyond what may be gleaned from his work. It is dated from 59, Fleet Street, London, 8 August, 1833. There were two writers of the Moat system in the Parlia- mentary " Gallery " in 1882, to nearly a hun- dred of the Pitman, and nearly half that number of the Taylor system, with Gurney men and others. ALEXANDER PATERSON. Barnsley.

THE EARTH MOTHER (9 th S. ix. 48). In- quiries were made for St. Walburge in 1 st S. x. 186, to which the Editor gave a long reply. He stated that she was daughter of St. Richard, and cousin to St. Boniface, was abbess of a nunnery at Heidenhaim, and died there on 24 February, 779. Reference is also made to 'Britannia Sancta ; or, Lives of the Celebrated British Saints/ 1745, and Butler's Lives of the Saints ' (25 February), 1812. A copy of the latter in 12 vols. may be seen in the Corporation Library, Guildhall, E.C.

EVERARD HOME COLEMAN. 71, Brecknock Road.

PRESBYTER will find some interesting in- ormation bearing on the subject of his query