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I may now avow that I have other aims than I deemed it expedient to mention in the prospectus:—to communicate in an agreeable manner, the greatest possible variety of important and diverting facts, without a single sentence to excite an uneasy sensation, or an embarrassing inquiry; and, by not seeming to teach, to cultivate a high moral feeling, and the best affections of the heart:—to open a storehouse, from whence manhood may derive daily instruction and amusement, and youth and innocence be informed, and retain their innocency.
To these intentions I have accommodated my materials under such difficulties as I hope may never be experienced by any one engaged in such a labour. To what extent less embarrassed and more enlarged faculties could have better executed the task I cannot determine; but I have always kept my main object in view, the promotion of social and benevolent feelings, and I am persuaded this prevailing disposition is obvious throughout. The poetical illustrations, whether “solemn thinkings,” or light dispersions,
are particularly directed to that end. I may now be permitted to refer to the copious indexes for the multifarious contents of the volume, and to urge the friends to the undertaking for assist. ance towards its completion. There is scarcely any one who has not said“Ah! this is something that will do for the Every-Day Book:” I crave to be favoured with that “something.” Others have observed—“I expected something about so and so in the Every-Day Book.” It is not possible, however, that I should know every thing; but if each will communicate “something," |
the work will gratify every one, and my own most sanguine wishes. And here I beg leave to offer my respectful thanks to several correspondents who have already furnished me with accounts of customs, &c. which appear under different signatures. Were I permitted to disclose their real names, it would be seen that several of these communications are from distinguished characters. As a precaution against imposition, articles of that nature have not been, nor can they be, inserted, without the name and address of the writer being confided to myself. Accounts, so subscribed, will be printed with any initials or mark the writers may please to suggest. From the publication of the present volume, a correct judgment may be formed of the nature and tendency of the work, which incidentally embraces almost every topic of inquiry or remark connected with the ancient and present state of manners and literature. Scarcely an individual is without a scrap-book, or a portfolio, or a collection of some sort; and whatever a kindhearted reader may deem curious or interesting, and can conveniently spare, I earnestly hope and solicit to be favoured with, addressed to me at Messrs. Hunt and Clarke's, Tavistock-street, who receive communications for the work, and publish it in weekly sheets, and monthly parts, as usual.
W. HONE. May, 1826,
P.S.—As many of the admirers of Hone's Popular Works have expressed regret that his original Titles were not included in the present Edition, the Publisher has much pleasure in acceding to their wishes.
Cotton introduces him into a poem on the new year—
Hark, the cock crows, and yon bright star
Discerns sereneness in that brow,
According to the ancient mythology, Janus was the god of gates and avenues, and in that character held a key in his right hand, and a rod in his left, to symbolize his opening and ruling the year: sometimes he bore the number 300 in one hand, and 65 in the other, the number of its days. At other times he was reprosented with four heads, and placed in a temple of four equal sides, with a door and three windows in each side, as emblems of the four seasons and the twelve months over which he presided
According to Veistegan (Restitution of Decayed Intelligence, 4to. 1628, W. the Saxons called this muntlı “Wolf. monat,” or Wolf-inonth, because the wolves of our ancient forests, impelled by hunger at this season, were wont to prowl and attack man himself; the inferior animals, on whom they usually preyed, having retired or perisher, from the inclemency of the weather. The Saxons also called this month “Aester-yula,” or After Christmas. In illuminated calendars prefixed to catholic missals, or service books, January was frequently depicted as a man with fagots or a woodman's axe, shivering and blowing his fingers. Spenser introduces this month in nis Faerie Queene : Then came old January, wrapped well In many weeds to keep the cold away; Yet did he quake and quiver like to quell; And blow his nayles to warme them if he may; For they were numb'd with holding all the
da An loa keene, with which he felled wood, And from the trees did lop the needlesse spray.
s A close holiday at all public Circumcision. A offices except the Excise, Customs, and Stamps. This festival stands in the calendar of the church of England, as well as in that of the Roman catholic church. It is said to have been instituted about 487; it first appeared in the reformed English liturgy in 1550. Without noticing every saint to whom each day is dedicated in the Roman catholic calendars, the names of saints will be given day by day, as they stand under each day in the last edition of their “lives,” by the Rev. Alban Butler, in 12 vols. 8vo. On the authority of that work the periods will be mentioned when the saints most noted for their miracles flourished, and some of those miracles be stated. Other miracles will be given : First, from “The Golder. Legend,” a black letter folio volume, printed by W. de Worde.—Secondly, from “The Church History of Britain,” by the Benedictine father, S. Cressy, dedicated by him to the queen consort of Charles 11., a folio, printed in 1668.-Thirdly, from the catholic translation of the “Lives of the Saints,” by the Rev. Father Peter Ribadeneira, priest of the society of Jesus, second §a.o.o.o. 2 vols. folio; and Fourthly, from other sources which will be named. By this means the reader will be acquainted with legends that rendered the saints and the celebration of their festivals popular. For example,the saints in Butler's Lives on this day occur in the following order:
St. Fulgentius ; St. Odilo, or Olou, St. Almachus, or Telemachus; St. Eugendus, or Oyend; St. Fanchea, or Faine; St. Mochua, or Moncain, alias Claunus ; St. Mochua, alias Croman, of Balla.
Sts. Mochua. According to Butler, these were Irish saints. One founded the morastery, now the town of Balla, in Connaught. The other is said to have founded 120 cells, and thirty churches, in one of
which he passed thirty years, and died about the sixth century. Bishop Patrick, in his “Reflexions upon the Devotions of the looman Church,” 1674, 8vo. cites of St. Mochua, that while walking and praying, and seeing a company of lambs running hastily to suck their mothers, be drew a line upon the ground which none of the hungry lambs durst pass. Patrick again cites, that St. Mochua having been visited by St. Kyenanus and fifteen of his clergy, they came to an impetuous and impassable river on their return, and wanted a boat; whereupon St. Mochua spread his mantle on the water, and Kyemanus with his fifteen priests were carried safely over upon the mantle, which floated back again to St. Mochua without wrinkle or wetting.
St. Fanchea, or Faine, is said by Butler to have been an Irish saint of the sixth century. Patrick quotes that St. Endeus desiring to become a monk, his companions approached to dissuade him ; but, upon the prayers of St. Faine, and her making the sign of the cross, their feet stuck to the earth like immovable stones, until by repentance they were loosed and went their way.
St. Fulgentius, according to Butler, died on the 1st of January, 533, sometimes went barefoot, never undressed to take rest, not ate flesh meat, but chiefly lived on pulse and herbs, though when old he admitted the use of a little oil. He preached, explained mysteries, controverted with heretics, and built monasteries. Butler concludes by relating, that after his death, a bishop named Pontian was assured in a vision of Fulgentius's immortality; that his relics were translated to Bourges, where they are venerated; and that the saint's head is in the church of the archbishop's seminary.
In the volume of “ELIA,” an excellent paper begins with “Every man hath two birthdays: two days, at least, in every year, which set him upon revolving the lapse of time, as it affects his mortal duration. The one is that which in an especial manner he termeth his. In the gradual desuetude of old observances, this custom of solemnizing our proper birthday hath nearly passed away, or is left to children, who reflect nothing at all about the mat. tet, nor understand any thing beyond the cake and orange. But the birth of a new year is of an interest too wide to be pretermitted by king or cobbler. No one ever regarded the First of January with indifference. It is that from which all date their time, and count upon what is left. It is the nativity of our common Adam.
“Of all sound of all bells—(bells, the music nighest bordering upon heaven)— most solemn and touching is the peal which rings out the old year. I never hear it without a gathering-up of my mind to a concentration of all the images that have been diffused over the past twelvemonth; all I have done cr suffered, performed, or neglected—in that regretted time. I begin to know its weith as when a person dies. It takes a personal colour; nor was it a poetical flight in a contemporary, when he exclaimed,
“I saw the skirts of the departing year.’
“The elders with whom I was brought up, were of a character not likely to let slip the sacred observance of any old institution; and the ringing out of the old year was kept by them with circumstances of peculiar ceremony. In those days the sound of those midnight chimes, though it seemed to raise hilarity in all around me, never failed to bring a train of pensive imagery into my fancy. Yet I then scarce conceived what it meant, or thought of it as a reckoning that couterned me. Not childhood alone, but the young man till thirty, never feels practically that he is mortal.” Ringing out the old and ringing in the new year, with “a merly new years a happy new year to you!" on new year's day, were greetings that moved sceptred pside, and humble labour, to smiles and
kind feelings in former times; and why should they be unfashionable in our own! Dr. Drake observes, in “Shakspeare and his Times,” that the ushering in of the new year, or new year's tide, with rejoicings, presents, and good wishes, was a custom observed, during the 16th century, with great regularity and parade, and was as cordially celebrated in the court of the prince as in the cottage of the peasant. The Rev.T. D. Fosbroke, in his valuable “Encyclopedia of Antiquities,” adduces various authorities to show that congratulations, presents, and visits were made by the Romans on this day. The origin, he says, is ascribed to Romulus and Tatius, and that the usual presents were figs and dates, covered with leaf-gold, and sent by clients to patrons, accompanied with a piece of money, which was expended to purchase the statues of deities. He mentions an amphora (a jar) which still exists, with an inscription denoting that it was a new year's present from the potters to their patroness. He also instances from Count Caylus a piece of Roman pottery, with an inscription wishing “a happy new year to you;” another, where a person wishes it to himself and his son; and three medallions, with the laurel leaf, fig, and date; one, of Commodus; another, of Victory; and a third, Janus, standing in a temple,with an inscription, wishingahappy new year to the emperor. New year's gifts were continued under the Roman emperors until they were prohibited by Claudius. Yet in i. early ages of the church the Christian emperors received them; nor did they wholly cease, although condemned by ecclesiastical councils on account of the pagan ceremonies at their presentation. The Druids were accustomed on certain days to cut the sacred misletoe with a golden knife, in a forest dedicated to the gods, and to distribute its branches with much ceremony as new year's gifts among the people. e late Rev. John Brand, in his “Popular Antiquities” edited by Mr. Ellis observes from Bishop Stillingfleet, tha. among the Saxons of the North, the festival of the new year was observed with more than ordinary jollity and feasting, and by sending new year's gists to one another. Mr. Fosbroke notices the continuation of the Roman practice during the middle ages; and that our kings, and the nobility especially, interchanged presents. Mr. Ellis quotes Matthew Paris, who appears to show that Henry III er
torted new year's gifts; and he cites from a MS. of the public revenue, anno 5, Edward VI. an entry of “rewards given on new year's day to the king's officers and servants in ordinary 155l. 5s., and to their servants that present the king's majestie with new year's gifts.” An orange stuck with cloves seems, by reference to Mr. Fosbroke and our early authors, to have been a popular new year's gift. Mr. Ellis suggests, that the use of this present may be ascertained from a remark by old Lupton, that the flavour of wine is improved, and the wine itself preserved from mouldness, by an orange or lemon stuck with cloves being hung within the vessel so as not to touch the liquor. Thomas Naogeorgus, in “The Popish Kingdome,” a Latin poem written in 1553, and Englished by Barnabe Googe, after remarking on days of the old year, urges this recollection : The next to this is Newe yeares day whereon to every frende, They costly presents in do bring, and Newe yeares giftes do sende, These giftes the husband gives his wife, and father eke the childe, And maister on his men bestowes the like, with favour milde.
Honest old Latimer, instead of presenting Henry VIII. with a purse of gold, as was customary, for a new year's gift, put into the king’s hand a New Testament, with a leaf conspicuously doubled down at Hebrews xiii. 4, which, on reference, will be found to have been worthy of all acceptation, though not perhaps well acSepted. Dr. Drake is of opinion that the wardrobe and jewellery of queen Elizabeth were principally supported by these annual contributions on new year's day. He cites lists of the new year's gifts presented to her, from the original rolls published in her Progresses by Mr. Nichols; and from these it appears that the greatest part, if not all the peers and peeresses of the realm, all the bishops, the chief officers of state, and several of the queen's household servants, even down to her apothecaries, master cook, serjeant of the pastry, &c. gave new year's gifts to her majesty; consisting, in general, either of a sum of money, or jewels, trinkets, wearing apparel, &c. The largest sum given by any of the temporal lords was 20!.; but the archbishop of Canterbury gave 40l., the archbishop of York 30l., and the other spiritual lords 20!, and 10l. : many of the tenuoral lords and great officers. and
most of the peeresses, gave rich gowns, Petticoats, shifts, silk stockings, garters, sweet-bags, doublets, mantles embroidered with precious stones, looking-glasses, fans, bracelets, caskets studded with jewels, and other costly trinkets. Sir Gilbert Dethick, garter king at arms, gave a book of the States in William the Conqueror's time; Absolon, the master of the Savoy, gave a Bible covered with cloth of gold, garnished with silver gilt, and plates of the royal arms; the queen's o presented her with a box of foreign sweetmeats; another physician presented a pot of green ginger, and a pot of orange flowers; her apothecaries gave her a box of lozenges, a box of ginger candy, a box of greenginger, and pots of other conserves. Mrs. Blanch a Parry gave her majesty a little gold comtit-box and spoon; Mrs. Morgan gave a box of cherries, and one of apricots. The queen's master cook and her serjeant of the pasty, presented her with various confectionary and preserves. Putrino, an Italian, gave her two [. ; Ambrose Lupo gave her a box of ute strings, and a glass of sweet water, each of three other Italians presented he with a pair of sweet gloves; a cutlet gave her a meat knife having a fan hast of bone, with a conceit in it; Jeromy Bassano gave two drinking glasses; and Smyth, the dustman, presented her ma: jesty with two bolts of cambrick. Some of these gifts to Elizabeth call to recollection the tempting articles which Autolycus, in the “Winter's Tale,” invites the country girls to buy ; he enters singing,
sawn, as white as driven snow;
Dr. Drake says, that though Elizabeth made returns to the new year's gifts, in plate and other articles, yet she took so. ficient care that the balance should be her own favour.
No. 4982, in the Catalogue for 1824, of Mr. Rodd, of Great Newport-street, is a roll of velum, ten fect long, containing the