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412


NOTES AND QUERIES. [9<s.ix.MAY24,i902.


raised by the Company for duty in its Eastern territories, and was taken into the English service about 1795, when quartered in Ceylon. Its principal colour, or standard, was plain white, bearing in the centre the capital letters V. O. C. interlaced. A correspondent at The Hague, well qualified to know, tells me that this particular cipher was the well- known badge, or insignia, of the old Dutch East India Company, its full title being " Vereenigde Oest Indisches Compagnie." The three capital letters, interlaced, formed its device. S. M. MILNE.

"ENGLAND'S DARLING" (9 th S. ix. 290). I have always understood that Edgar Athcl- ing, son of Edward the Outlaw, was "Eng- land's darling. ' He was the true heir and actually elected king, but not crowned ; nor could he have held it against William the Conqueror ; but, as the last known survivor of the royal house of Egbert (A.D. 836) and Alfred (A.D. 901), he would naturally be looked up to by the people, and, so to speak, live in memory for generations. What is known of him after Tenchebrai in 1106 1 ABSENS.

PRICE OF EGGS (9 th S. ix. 147, 277). The following quotation from an old ballad in the 'Reliques of Ancient English Poetry' may prove illustrative, though scarcely trust- worthy. It is there said to be taken from the 'Garland of Goodwill.' The dialect is broad Somersetshire, and the scene the ruins of Glastonbury Abbey :

IGNORANCE. Ch' ill tell thee yhat, good vellowe,

Before the vriers went hence, A bushell of the best vheate

Was sold vor vourteen pence And vorrty egges a penny,

That were both good and newe ; And this che zay my zelf have zeene And yet ich am no Jewe.

Glastonbury Abbey was dissolved in 1539, and seems to have been one of the richest monastic establishments in England. The conversation recorded may be supposed to have taken place some forty years later.

JOHN PICKFORD, M.A.

Newbourne Rectory, Woodbridge.

COUNTESS OF DENBIGH (9 th S. ix. 247). The Countess of Denbigh of the period did not die in January, 1725/6, in Cavendish Square, London. The countess of that time was Isabella, daughter of Peter de Jonge (or Young), of Utrecht, in Holland ; her husband was William, the fifth Earl of Denbigh, who succeeded to his titles 18 March, 1716. She did not die until 16 May, 1769. Possibly the lady who died in Cavendish Square in 1725/6


was the Countess Dowager of Denbigh i.e., Bester, daughter of Sir Basil Firebrass, Bart., and widow of Basil, fourth Earl of Denbigh and third Earl of Desmond.

RONALD DIXON. 46, Marlborough Avenue, Hull.

PORTRAITS OF EARLY LORD MAYORS (9 th S. viii. 485 ; ix. 173, 232). I doubt if it would be possible to compile "a complete list of portraits of the Lord Mayors of London." I trust, however, that a list of those in exist- ence may be gradually built up under this heading in the pages of ' N. & Q.' Doubtless there are many such portraits in the custody of the numerous City companies, and it is to be hoped that a record of their existence may be forthcoming I append a few rough notes which may be of service.

The Mercers' Company possesses a copy of the ordinances of the almshouses founded by Sir Richard Whittington, "thrice Lord Mayor of London," who died in 1423. On these ordinances is depicted, by a contemporary artist, a representation of Whittington's deathbed,

" surrounded by his executors, his chaplain, his doctor, the master of his almshouses, and his twelve bedesmen. The picture is interesting for the por- traits it contains. The fine, but wasted face and frame of Whittington himself; the small figure, instinct with energy and capacity, of John Car- penter, the Town Clerk, to whom we owe the ' Liber Albus,' and who was himself a member of the Mercers' Company ; the characteristic expres- sions and attitudes of John Coventry and William Grove, the other executors, are well worthy of notice."*

The portrait of Sir Lionel Duckett, Lord Mayor in 1572,

"in his robes as Lord Mayor, said to have been painted by Holbein, was for many years in the possession of his descendants, and was recently sold by Sir George F. Duckett, Bart., F.S.A., to the Mercers' Company."f

" The ceremony of administering the oath to Alderman Newnham (Lord Mayor in 1782) is com- memorated in a curious picture in the City Art Gallery, presented to the Corporation by Alderman Boydell, painted by William Miller, and containing upwards of 120 portraits. "+

A portrait of Sir John Guyer, Lord Mayor in 1646, is in possession of his descendant - Biggs, Esq., of Stockton, Wilts.

At the Bethlem Hospital may be seen a portrait of Sir William Withers, Lord Mayor in 1707.

The Skinners' Company possesses a full- length portrait of Sir Thomas Pilkington,

  • ' The Mercers' Company and some of its Eminent

Members,' by E. W. Brabrook, F.S.A., F.R.S.L. Privately printed, 1889.

t Ibid. J Ibid.