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BY SYLVANUS URBAN, GENT.
MINOR CORRESPONDENCE.-Library of the Society of Antiquaries-The Coins at the British Museum-Name of Puttoc-Danish Idols at Hoxne-Epitaph at Wood Ditton
NOTES ON THE CATHEDRAL LIBRARIES IN ENGLAND. By Beriah Botfield
First Settlement of the Teutonic Races in Britain-Translation of "Beowulf
Two Letters from Alexander Pope to Mr. (afterwards Earl) Nugent
The Seize Quartiers of Edward VI.
Latin translation of Alexander Selkirk's Soliloquy, by Cowper
Cunningham's Handbook of London-Mackenzie's Westminster, 161; The
ARCHITECTURE.-Institute of British Architects, 180; St. Alban's Archi-
Promotions, Preferments, and Births, 197; Marriages.....
DEATHS, arranged in Counties
Registrar-General's Returns of Mortality in the Metropolis-Markets, 223;
Embellished with a View of The COLLEGE of the VICARS CHORAL at LINCOLN.
A CORRESPONDENT "wishes to inquire, with regard to the library of the Society of Antiquaries, whether the spirit of the regulations made in June 1847, and of the order on which these were framed, does not extend to give the Fellows a right to the use of the books (with suitable accommodation for that purpose) in the Society's rooms, as well as the power of taking them away. Large sets of books may often be consulted with more facility at the place where they are deposited; and the removal of works of this kind, particularly as they are only delivered on personal application, is an inconvenience which defeats the obvious intentions of the Society in its late vote and order. It is also suggested that three or four days in the week, with regular attendance, would be better than every day with less regularity in this respect." We believe there can be but one answer to our Correspondent's first inquiry, that the use of the library of the Society within the place of its deposit, has always been a part of the advantages proposed to the Fellows. During the recent alterations the light and cleanliness of the room have been somewhat amended, and a new library-table has been introduced, and whatever further conveniences for research or study may still be required, we are sure would, if properly submitted to the President and Council, receive their favourable consideration.
MR. URBAN,-I know not what measures the curators of our national collection of coins and medals in the British Museum are intending to adopt, in order to render impossible such thefts as recently took place in that collection; but it appears to me that it might readily be done, at the same time that both sides of the coin might be more easily exhibited than at present, and the specimens saved from the deteriorating effects of friction, which, even from so soft a substance as the tips of the human fingers, would in the course of time materially injure them. This desirable end might be obtained by forming the bottom of the drawer or tray in which the coins are kept of good plate glass, and after fixing the divisions between the coins by covering them with another sheet of the same glass, this would effectually secure them from abstraction, and from the bad effects of dust or friction. Yours, &c. W. C. TREVELYAN.
H. C. C. in our last Minor Correspondence, remarked that "there is no occasion to assume that Putta was the latinized form of the Saxon Puttoc." J. P. cannot think that the name of Pott was derived from Putta, as determined by H. C. C."
He is also at a loss to guess how that name is identified, or connected, with Putney. I know that in the Magna Britannia it is said that Alfricus, the Archbishop of York, who died in 1050, was surnamed "Puttoc or Putta:" and that the latter name was likewise borne by several of the bishops in the Saxon times, as we are told by such authors as then wrote in Latin.
CALCARIUS DENTATUS presumes our Correspondents are pretty well satisfied by this time about the "iron point" (i. e. a rusty nail), said to have been found sticking in an old oak, in Hoxne wood, and which it was maintained must have been the point of an arrow shot by the Danes at King Edmund in 870 ! probably the very arrow that completed his martyrdom! (See Gent. Mag. Nov. 1848.) But (he adds) I will confess that, little as I expected any thing worth recording to come out of the iron point,' I should have liked to learn something more about the Danish Idols,' incidentally mentioned by your Correspondent. In answer to an inquiry, which I made of a friend in that neighbourhood, I am informed that there they stand in the porch at the abbey, looking as grim as ever.' Now, were I a younger man, or were the distance not so great from my residence, I would certainly see them too, and give you a drawing of them. Could you find no friend in Suffolk to do so much for you? for, since Gog and Magog, in Guildhall, are beginning to be suspected of a much higher antiquity than has been yielded to them, the inquiry into the origin of these, and various others existing about the Eastern Counties, may possess a peculiar interest."
The following Epitaph is taken from a head-stone in the churchyard of Wood Ditton, co. Cambridge. At the top, sunk in the stone, is a small tin pan, which is protected by iron bars across it.
To the Memory
of WILLIAM SYMONS,
Here lies the corpse, who was the man
ERRATUM.-P. 62, bottom of col. 2, Mr. Denton's poem of "Bowes Love' was written, not "about the year 1738," but between 1795 and 1800.
Notes on the Cathedral Libraries in England. By Beriah Botfield. 8vo. AMONG the constitutions given to the monks of England by Archbishop Lanfranc, we are told, in 1072, the following injunction occurs. the beginning of Lent the librarian is ordered to deliver a book to each of the religious belonging to the church or monastery; a whole year is allowed for the perusal of this book; and at the returning Lent, those monks who had neglected to read the books they had respectively received were commanded to prostrate themselves at the feet of the abbot and to supplicate his pardon and indulgence, having obtained which, the librarian gave out another book for the ensuing year.* Now, approving as we heartily do of this regulation, and thinking it might be carried out with effect in the present day at Winchester, Norwich, and elsewhere, and also
The earliest catalogue existing of an English library, we believe to be that of William of Daventry, fourth provost of Oriel college. It is a catalogue made by him of the collegiate library, in the year 1349, on a long, narrow, strip of thin vellum. It is called "An Inventory of the Bokes of St. Mary's College." The library of Oriel is still in possession of a few of the books referred to in this singularly curious and ancient relic. Perhaps next to this, or after that of Durham (see p. 123), we may mention "A Catalogue of all and each of the Books of Lord Stafford at Stafford Castle in 1556-Catalogus oium et singuloru libroru apud castru Stafforde remanentiu ad annu d'ni 1556." An extract from this may be found in Dibdin's Decameron, vol. iii. p. 254. We suspect that our learned, industrious, and estimable friend the Rev. Joseph Hunter could give us some rare and curious information touching these old and neglected book-repositories, which he must have collected in his various researches. Did he, by-the-by, ever hear of a fragment of an old ballad, printed as we guess, at Ipswich, but without date or printer's name, in black letter, called "The Clerke and the Chatelaine." We suspect our copy to be unique. It seems to refer to some friar or religious person who was fond of hunting out old books in provincial towns and obscure places, and contains an account of his disappointment at Colchester Castle.
"At Colchester," quoth hee, "but small gaine
I met, and off the Chatelaine
In my judgment doe I moche complayne."
Some be written, some be in print, they saye;
Here be an 'Abridgment of Polidore,'
A fayre boke, and Of the Worlde the Mirror,'
And Castell of Health,' and manie such more.
considering the great advantage a modern prebendary possesses over a Saxon monk, who had to hunt before he could read, in order to procure skins to cover his books; though in these days of ease and indulgence we shall not insist that any plump dignitary who fills a stall should be as fond of books as "Tom Folio" of the Tatler;" yet we think that, as he receives more emoluments and performs less duties than any other of his clerical brethren, and considering that he is also fed with the crums that fall from the Bishop's table, he might bestow a little of his leisure in being acquainted with the contents of the library that is emphatically placed within his care. We think he might find subjects of congratulation, not only that his cathedral affords him, what is denied to his parochial brethren, " copia provisæ frugis in annum," but "librorum " also ;* and that he might say with the philosophic Emperor; ̓Αλλοι μεν ἵππων, ἀλλοι δε ὀρνεων, ἀλλοί δε θηριῶν ἐρωσιν ; ἐμοὶ δε βιβλίων κτήσεως ἐκ παιδαιριου δεινος ἐκτέτηκε ποθοs.† "Some delight in horses, some in hawks, some in hunting, but ever since I was a little boy I delighted in the possession of books." Our good easy canon or prebendary (quocunque nomine gaudet) might also be informed, that as early as the sixth century commenced the custom of copying ancient books, and even of composing new ones. It was the usual and even only employment of the monks of Marmoutier. A monastery without a library was considered as a fort or camp deprived of the necessary articles of its defence. "Claustrum sine armario, fuit quasi castrum sine armentario." The consequence of these good men's laudable and pious industry was, that many of the monasteries and even nunneries were blessed with the possession of valuable works. Such eminently were those of Godstow, of Peterborough, and of Glastonbury.
Peterborough, at its dissolution, contained the large number of 1700 MSS.; and Leland, who visited the monastery of Glastonbury just before the Dissolution, was struck with the venerable air and amplitude of this library. Nor did their learned inmates in those days agree with their less learned and industrious descendants now in believing that "vetusta" and "inutilia" had the same meaning. Though the abbey of Croyland was burnt only twenty-five years after the Conquest, its library consisted of 900 volumes. There was a scriptorium, or writing-chamber, in every monastery, in which several of the monks were employed in transcribing books. The abbot could, with the consent of the chapter, impose an annual tax on every member of the community for defraying the expense of the library; and, what will make many deans and chapters in our degenerate days shudder to hear, the monks of many monasteries were bitterly reproached for the extravagant sums they expended on their libraries! Now and then, to be sure, a slight exception would arise; but however the only one we recollect at present occurred, where it may eadily be pardoned, in the case of one of the tenderer sex-one Joyce Rouse, abbess of Romsey, who it is to be feared must have bartered some
* Sit bona librorum et provisæ frugis in annum
+ See Socrates, Hist. Eccl. Lib. 3, cap. 1, and Saldenus, De Libris, p. 259.-REV. See Warton's History of English Poetry, Diss. ii. and also the sixth volume of Leland's Collectanea, for an account of the libraries in ancient monasteries, p. 86, &c. -REV.
§ See Martene, Coll. Scriptor. t. i. p. 1020.-REV.
of her vellum missals, and psalters, and antiphonies, for those fiery liquors that particularly do injury to female blood. At a visitation of Bishop Fox, in 1506, the abbess was accused of inordinate drinking, especially in the night-time, and of inviting the nuns to her chamber every evening for the purpose of these excesses, post completorium;" and so they received a due admonition, and the bishop ordered the nuns "Quod sint sobriæ et abstiniant a potu.” * When, however, we recollect an episcopal cellar, only a very few years ago, which contained specimens of wine of every vintage in Europe, and we believe in Asia, in its goodly and capacious vaults for the right reverend owner was as fond of the wine-press as of the book-press-we may pardon the passing frailty of one poor abbess and her thirsty daughters, remarking that they were only solacing themselves as the softer sex may be well pardoned for doing-for the severe and extraordinary injunction of the said bishop, that they should abstain “a societate sacerdotum."+ So much for the good Abbess Joyce Rouse and her tender little flock of mynchons.‡
In returning to the present work, we might say that we perhaps could have wished some little alteration in its structure, and that we think the account of the miscellaneous and common literature not sufficiently classified, -indeed we are not sure that we should have inserted it all; but our desire is not to be picking holes in the work of a person more pious, more learned, and more industrious than ourselves. We agree with some Frenchman who said " that nothing is more absurd than to quarrel about cataloguemaking," especially as they have discovered at the British Museum that it is impossible to make a catalogue at all, and that a catalogue is a work above the ingenuity of man to construct, and the power of man to execute. But, however, this we have to say,-Mr. Botfield's has been made "suis viribus" by his own hands, and eyes, and knowlege, and toil. epti sunt," says Morhof, "qui librorum catalogos scribunt è catalogis. Oculata fides, et judicium præsens requiritur." This Mr. Botfield has well shown; and we must sum up his merits in the words which Bale bestows on one who preceded him with the same ardour in the same line. Of that distinguished bookman, John Boston of Bury St. Edmund's, he says— “Vir pius fuit, literatus, et bonarum literarum fautor et promotor singularis. Mirâ sedulitate et diligentiâ omnes omnium regni monasteriorum bibliothecas invisit, librorum collegit titulas et auctorum eorum nomina, quæ omnia alphabetico disposuit ordine et quasi unam omnium bibliothecam fecit."
We now give some account of the Work, in Mr. Botfield's words.
It appears that missals and service-books were adorned with pictures and illuminated for the special improvement and delight of the tender sex, as children are tempted to take physic through the agreeable medium of raspberry jam; for Hearne tells us, "The lives of the holy men and women, especially of the latter, were curiously written on vellum, and many illuminations appeared throughout, so as to draw the nuns the more easily to follow their examples." Vide ed. G. Neubrig. b. ii. p. 768; who says again, "That the finest books of offices, written in large letters, were for the use of the nunnes and persons of distinction, and many of them were finely covered. See p. 773. In Mr. Nichols's" Manners and Expenses of Ancient Times in England," 4to. 1797, the price of missals and bibles between 1530 and 1560 may be seen; see p. 154, &c. A "Premmer lymned with gold and with imagery written honds," was priced at 88. 4d.; "a bybyl and parafrause" at 16s. &c.-REV.
+ See T. Warton's Life of Sir Thomas Pope, p. 25, for a fuller account of this history.-REV.
In old deeds the nuns are often called mynchons.—Rev.