NOTES AND QUERIES. [9 th s. ix. JAN. 25, 1902.
"maistre de la sawe" by disregarding the adjected phrase "qu'est a fiaire" an easy, but far from commendable mode of interpre- tation. One may wonder why an English word should be used when a French one was handy, sie or sigue (see Scheler, s.v. ' Scier '). But fancy the post of maitre of a saw in course of manufacture ! F. ADAMS.
VERSES WANTED (9 th S. viii. 144). The verses referred to are probably those begin- ning
Comes, at times, a stillness as of even,
and forming hymn No. 641 in the 'Office Hymnbook' (Pickering & Chatto, 1890). They are there said to be the property of the Rev. I. Gregory Smith.
JOHN B. WAINEWRIGHT.
ANNE BILSON (9 th S. viii. 464). Anne, the wife of Thomas Bilson, Bishop of Winchester, was one of the five daughters of Thomas Mill, Esq., of Grove Place, Nursling, co. Hants, by his wife Jane, daughter of Richard Button, of Sarum (see addenda to 'Vis. Dorset, 1623,' Colby and Ry lands, p. 17).
Thomas Mill (younger son of John Mill, a wealthy merchant of Southampton, d. 1551) was Recorder of Southampton, and repre- sented that borough in Parliament in 1553 ; he died in 1560. His only son, Sir Richard Mill, Knt. (born 1556-7), was Sheriff of Hants in 1593-4 ; M.P. for Hants 1597 ; died, s.p., 20 Oct., 1613. The remains of a handsome monument erected to his memory may still be seen in Nursling Church.
The bishop had two children by his wife Anne : a daughter Amy, the wife of Sir Richard Norton, Bart., of Rotherfield, co. Hants, and a son, Sir Thomas Bilson, Knt. (born 1591 ; married Susanna, daughter of Sir William Uvedale, Knt., of Wickham, co. Hants, on 6 August, 1612; knighted at Royston 25 Oct., 1613 ; M.P. for Winchester 1614; died 1649), of Mapledurham, near Petersfield, co. Hants, where his descendants resided until the death, without issue, of his great-grandson Leonard Bilson, M.P. for Petersfield, on 6 Oct., 1715.
There is a record in the Petersfield parish registers of the burial of "Anne Bilson widow," on 6 Nov., 1643, which doubtless refers to the bishop's widow.
ALF. T. EVERITT. High Street, Portsmouth.
BURIAL SERVICE READ OVER A RAIL (9 th S ym. 524). I find this paragraph unsatisfac- tory. It is not yet possible for a man to fall into a furnace of molten metal," nor is iron now "run into rails"; while the article
usually described as "a rail " would be some yards in length. If your correspondent had addressed the two unanswerable inquiries direct to the " brother of his friend," he would probably have been informed that no such occurrences took place. If the statement can have had its origin from reports of an accurrence at one of the blast furnaces at Middlesbrough some years ago, the actual ircumstances were widely different.
WILLIAM G. NORRIS. Coalbrookdale.
OLD SONGS (9 th S. viii. 104, 212, 351, 472). The author of the * Beggar's Petition,' begin- ning " Pity the sorrows of a poor old man," was the Rev. Thomas Moss, B.A., who died in 1808. There is a notice of him in the 'Dictionary of National Biography' (vol. xxxix. p. 184).
WILLIAM E. A. AXON.
'CORNHILL MAGAZINE' ILLUSTRATIONS (9 th S. ix. 29). Mrs. Richmond Ritchie says :
"My father drew the designs [of the initial letter T], and an employe at Smith & Elder's copied them on to the wood. But it wasn't satisfactory alto- gether. Then came Mr. Walker's drawings."
HENRIETTA COLE. 96, Philbeach Gardens, S.W.
COMMISSION or SEWERS (9 th S. viii. 485). The Commissioners of Sewers were in early reigns appointed at the pleasure of the Crown, in all parts of the realm wherever needful, by commission under the Great Seal, granted pro re nata, such commissions to endure for five and sometimes for ten or fifteen years.
By statute 23 Henry VIII. it was enacted that the commissions were to be at the dis- cretion and nomination of the Lord Chan- cellor, Lord Treasurer, and Chief Justices, and to continue ten years unless repealed by a new commission. The duties of the Com- missioners of Sewers were to overlook the repairs of sea-banks and sea-walls, the cleans- ing of rivers, public streams, and ditches, &c., for the carrying off of water, and were limited to the county for which they were specially appointed. They were empowered to make laws and ordinances for the carrying out of such repairs, and to assess and levy such rates as they deemed necessary for that purpose. They might decree the sale of lands in default of payment of such rate, but their decrees were to be certified into Chancery and to have the royal assent ; and the Commissioners were subject to the juris- diction of the Court of King's Bench.