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9*8. IX. MAY 31, 1902.] NOTES AND QUERIES.


435


sive powers. The main water-channels are known as "rivers" or "yeos"(Kenn River, Little River, Great Yeo, Middle Yeo, &c.). These are more or less artificial. Then there are smaller, but frequently important, rhynes receiving the water from ditches and gripes (small surface drains), and forming secondary mains to the yeos and rivers. The yeos and rhynes are kept in order by the owners of property within the district liable to be affected by flooding, being known as " river- work " or " rheen-work." The banks have to be made up, weeds cut, &c , under the super- vision of parochial juries, presided over by an experienced foreman. These report to the commissioners, who fine where tney see cause, without appeal. The liability for "commission work "is frequently very heavy, as the whole work of a farm is often (by contract) charged on a small part, to the exclusion of the remainder.

In sheet x. N.E. 6-inch Ord. Survey, now before me, I observe u Binhay Rhyne," " Bid- dlestreet Rhyne," "Wemberham Rhyne," with many others. The name appears to have nothing in common with rime=hoa,r- frost, but to be one of the many signifying a watercourse or stream.

Mr. Ayshford Sanford, the well-known geologist, in his paper ' On the Course of the Rivers in Western Europe during the Pleistocene Period,' abstracted in the Pro- ceedings of the Som. Arch, and N. Hist. Soc., xiii. 9, states that he " had come to the con- clusion that the main river of this part of

the world was then the Rhine," the river par excellence. JAMES R. BRAMBLE, F.S.A.

Hon. Sec. Som. A. and N. H. Soc.

Weston-super-Mare.

This word is familiar to all country people in Herefordshire as well as Gloucestershire. Sir G. C. Lewis, who spells it reen, defines it as the "interval between ridges of ploughed land," from which it serves to carry off the water. With the spelling reiin, Haliiwell gives it in his dictionary, citing an example of its use from the 'Chester Plays' (i. 30). JOHN HUTCHINSON.

Middle Temple Library.

FASHION IN LANGUAGE (9 th S. ix. 228, 352). Under this head it may be well to draw attention to the fact that there were and still are persons who, for some reason which I cannot fathom, persist of set purpose in using words which they are well aware have come into the language as it were by stealth, and, if not in themselves objects of reproba- tion, are useless and accompanied by associa- tions which render them when heard painful


to those who regard our tongue as a possession to be kept, so far as may be, incorrupt. "Reliable' and dependable" are of this class. They are possibly capable of defence, as are most evil things, but if used at all, for which there seems no occasion, should be confined to the hurried writing of those who make copy for the daily press and the advertisements which disfigure the walls of our streets.

Another set of people will argue with you that it is not only permissible but elegant to use phrases such as " If I was " andthe like, and will quote examples from writers whom we all respect, thinking thereby they prove their case. Such persons do not bear in mind that there is hardly any writer of English who has not made mistakes, and that expressions of this sort may often be charitably accounted for by negligent proof- reading.

Another set of people constantly err regarding titles. Commonly this is mere innocent blundering, but sometimes it has its origin in deliberate purpose. I have myself known persons who have persisted in calling the author of the ' Novum Organura' "Lord Bacon," although they were careful to point out that they knew his proper title was Viscount St. Albans. The defence they vouchsafed was that ** Lord Bacon " was the name by which the philosopher was popu- larly known. Mr. Gladstone fell into this error, but whether by mistake or with deliberation it perhaps does not become me to speculate. Another instance of this may be given. Many of those who have written concerning the history of the seventeenth century speak of General Monck when referring io times succeeding the Restoration. In most cases this cannot be accounted for by ignorance. Whatever the truth may be, it is but kindly to assume they were aware that when the Stuart monarchy was restored Monck was created Duke of Albemarle. To be consistent such people should tell us that Sir Arthur Wellesley defeated the Emperor Napoleon I. at Waterloo. ASTARTE.

1 HISTORY OF AYDER ALI KHAN ' (9 th S. ix. 369 )._With reference to my query as above, I have since found that the authorship of this book was settled by MR. ALLNUTT (5 th S. ii. 390). The author is M. Maitre de la Tour. If we had a complete General Index, say to the end of last century, much waste of space would be saved. W. CROOKE.

Langton House, Charltou Kings.

I find in my notes that M. M. D. L. T. stands for Monsieur le Maitre de la lour,