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were divided into two parties ; one halfe 1585, “ a booke was drawne by a grare consisting of one hundred and 'twenty, citizen, (John Mountgomery,) and by were appointed on St. John's eve, the him dedicated to sir Tho. Pullison, then other halfe on St. Peter's eve.” They 1. maior, and his brethren the aldermen, were “in bright harnesse, some over-gilt, eontaining the manner and order of a and every one a jornet of scarlet there marching watch in the citie, upon the upon and a chaine of gold, his hench-man evens accustomed; in commendation following him, his minstrels before him, whereof, namely, in times of peace to be and his cresset light passing by him.". In used, he hath words to this effect : 'The the procession were “ the waytes of the artificers of sundry sorts were thereby city, the maiors officers, for his guard well set aworke, none but rich men before bim, all in a livery of wosted, or charged, poor men helped, old souldiers, say jackets, party coloured; the maior trumpeters, drummers, fifes, and enginehimselfe well mounted on horseback, the bearers, with such like men meet for the sword-bearer before him in faire armour, prince's service, kept in use, wherein the well mounted also, the maiors foot-men, safety and defence of every common-weale and the like torch-bearers about him; consisteth. Armour and weapons being. hench-men twaine, upon great stirring yeerely occupied in this wise, the citizens horses following him. The sheriffes had of their owne readily prepared for watches came one after the other in like any neede, whereas, by intermission order, but not so large in number as the hereof, armorers are out of worke, soulmaiors : for whereas the maior had, diers out of ụse, , weapons overgrowne besides his giant, three pageants, each of with foulnesse, few or none good being the sheriffes had, besides their giants, but provided,'" &c. Notwithstanding these two pageants; each their morris-dance, plausible grounds, the practice was disand one hench-man, their officers in continued. jackets of wosted, or say, party-coloured, There can be little doubt that so great differing from the maiors, and each from an array of armed citizens, was not only other, but having harnessed men a great viewed with distrust by the government, many, &c. This Midsummer watch was but had become of so great charge to the thus accustomed, yeerely, time out of corporation, that it was found mutually minde, untill the yeere 1539, the thirty- convenient to substitute a less expensive first of Henry the Eighth, in which yeere, and less 'warlike body to watch and ward on the eighth of May, a great muster was the city's safety. The splendour wherein made by the citizens at the Miles end, all it was annually set forth was, however, a in bright harnesse, with coats of white goodly sight, and attracted the curiosity silke or cloth, and chaines of gold, in of royalty itself, for we find that on St. three great battels, to the number of John's eve, in 1510, king Henry VIII. fifteen thousand, which passed thorow came to the King's-head, in Cheap, in London to Westminster, and so through the livery of a yeoman of the guard, with the sanctuary, and round about the parke a halbert on his shoulder, and there, in of St. James, and returned home thorow that disguise, beheld the watch till it had Oldborne.”
passed, and was so gratified with the In that year, 1539, king Henry VIII. show, that “on St. Peter's night next forbid this muster of armed men, and following, he and the queen came royally prohibited the marching watch altogether, riding to the sayd place, and there, with and it was disused “til the yeere 1548.” their nobles, beheld the watch of the city, When sir John Gresham, then lord and returned in the morning."* In 1519, mayor, revived the marching watch, both Christern, king of Denmark, and his on the eve of St. John the baptist, and of queen, being then in England, were conSt. Peter the apostle, and set it forth, in ducted 10 the King's-head, in Cheap, order as before had been accustomed; there to see the watch. “ which watch was also beautified by the On taking leave of the old London the number of more than three hundred watch, on St. John's eve, a remark or demilances and light-horsemen, prepared two may be made respecting their lights. by the citizens to be sent into Scotland, for the rescue of the town of Haddington.” After that time the marching watch * again fell into disuse; yet, in the year
or it was a light from combustibles, in a Concerning the cressets or lights of the hollow pan. It was reudered portable by watch, this may be observed by way of being placed on a pole, and so carried explanation.
from place to place. Mr. Douce, in his The cresset light was formed of a “ Illustrations of Shakspeare,” gives the wreathed rope smeared with pitch, and following four representations from old placed in a cage of iron, like a trivet prints and drawings of suspended on pivots, in a kind of fork;
AND ALSO CARRIED BY THE
Marching Watch of London. Mr. Douce imagines the word cresset “ Watch Ward, and keepe thy Garments to have been derived from the French tight, word croiset, a cruet or earthen pot.
For I come thiefe-like at Midnight." When the cresset light was stationary Whereto Ward answers the injunction, to it served as a beacon, or answered the watch, in the lines following: purpose of a fixed lamp, and in this way our ancestors illuminated or lighted up
“All-seeing, never-slumbering LORD; their streets. There is a volume of ser
Be thou my Watch, Ne be thy WARD. mons, by Samuel Ward, printed 1617-24, Ward's “ lamp, or beacon," is transwith a wood-cut frontispiece, representing ferred from his frontispiece to the next two of these fixed cressets or street-lamps, column, in order to show wherein our with verses between them, in relation to ancient standing lamps differed from the his name and character, as a faithful
present. watchman. In the first lines old Ward is addressed thus :
as they have; some pikes, some muskets, calivers, or other guns, some partisans, holberts, and such as have armour send their 'servants in their armour. The number of these are yearly almost two hundred, who, at sun-setting, meet on the Row, the most open part of the town, where the mayor's serjeant at mace gives them an oath, the tenor whereof followeth, in these words : ' They shall well and truly keep this town till to-morrow at the sun-rising; you shall come into no house without license, or cause reasonable. Of all manner of casualties, of fire, of crying of children, you shall due warning make to the parties, as the case shall require you. You shall due search make of all manner of affrays, bloud-sheds, outcrys, and of all other things that be suspected,' &c.
Which done, they all march in orderly array through the principal parts of the town, and then they are sorted into several companies, and designed to several parts of the town, where they are to keep the watch until the sun dismiss them in the morning. In this business the fashion is for every watchman to wear a garland, made in the fashion of a crown imperial, bedeck'd with flowers of various kinds, some natural, some artificial, bought and kept for that purpose; as also ribbans, jewels, and, for the better garnishing whereof, the townsinen use the day before to ransack the gardens of all the gentlemen
within six or seven miles about NottingAn Old Bearon,
ham, besides what the town itself affords
them, their greatest ambition being to Standing Lamp. outdo one another in the bravery of their It will be seen from this engraving garlands."* So pleasant a sight must that the person, whose business it was to have been reluctantly parted with ; and “ watch" and trim the lamp, did not accordingly in another place we find that ascend for that purpose by a ladder, as
this Midsummer show was held at a much the gas-lighters do our gas-lamps, or as
later period than at Nottinghain, and the lamp-lighter did the oil-lamps which with more pageantry in the procession. they superseded, but by climbing the
St. John's Eve Watch at Chester. pole, hand and foot, by means of the projections on each side.
The annual setting of the watch on St
John's eve, in the city of Chester, was an St. John's Eve Watch at Nottingham.
affair of great moment. By an ordinance The practice of setting the watch, at of the mayor, aldermen, and common Nottingham, on St. John's eve, was main- councilmen of that corporation, dated in tained until the reign of Charles I., the the year 1564, and preserved among the tne manner whereof is thus described :
Harleian MSS, in the British Museum, a “ In Nottingham, by an ancient custom, pageant which is expressly said to be they keep yearly a general watch every dained to consist of four giants, one uni
according to ancient custom," is orMidsummer eve at night, to which every inhabitant of any ability sets forth a man, corn, one dromedary, one camel, one as well voluntaries as those who are luce, one dragon, and six hobby-horses charged with arms, with such munition
* Deering's Nottingbam
with other figures. By another MS. in which being made, “ as it aunciently was, the same library it is said, that Henry with a ship to turn round," cost four Hardware, Esq., the mayor, in 1599, pounds, including the hiring of the caused the giants in the Midsummer show « bays," and five men to carry it. The to be broken, “ and not to goe the devil charge for the ship, and new dressing it, in his feathers ;” and it appears that he was five shillings. Strutt, who sets forth caused a man in complete armour to go these particulars, conjectures, that the in their stead : but in the year 1601, John ship was probably made with pasteboard, Ratclyffe, beer-brewer, being mayor, set that material seeming, to him, to have out the giants and Midsummer show as of been a principle article in the manufacold it was wont to be kept. In the time turing of both these movable mountains. of the commonwealth the show was dis- The ship was turned, he says, by means continued, and the giants with the beasts of a swivel, attached to an iron handle were destroyed.
underneath the frame; the “ bays" was At the restoration of Charles II., the to hang round the bottom of the frames citizens of Chester replaced their pageant, to the ground, and so conceal the bearers. and caused all things to be made new, Then there was a new “ elephant and because the old models were broken. castell, and a cupid," with bis bows and According to the computation, the four arrows,“ suitable to it;" the castle was great giants were to cost five pounds covered with tin foil, and the cupid with a-piece, at the least, and the four men to skins, so as to appear to be naked, and carry them were to have two shillings and the charge for these, with two men to six-pence each; the materials for constructe carry them, was one pound sixteen shiling them were to be hoops of various lings and eight-pence. The “ four beastes sizes, deal boards, nails, pasteboard, called the unicorne, the antelop, the scaleboard, paper of various sorts, buck- Aower-de-luce (?) and the camell, cost one ram, size-cloth, and old sheets for their pound sixteen shillings and four-pence body-sleeves and shirts, which were to each, and eight men were paid sixteen be coloured; also tinsel, tinfoil, gold and shillings to carry them. Four boys for silver leaf, and colours of various kinds, carrying the four hobby-horses, had four with glue and paste in abundance. The shillings, and the hobby-horses cost six provision of a pair of old sheets to cover shillings and eight-pence each. The charge the “ father and mother giants," and three for the new dragon, with six naked boys yards of buckram for the mother's and to beat at it, was one pound sixteen shildaughter's hoods, seems to prove that lings. Six morris-dancers, with a pipe three of these monstrous pasteboard and tabret, had twenty shillings; and figures represented females. À desire to “hance-staves, garlands, and balls, for preserve them may be inferred from an the attendants upon the mayor and she entry in the bill of charges :~" For ars- riffs cost one pound nineteen shillings." nick to put into the paste, to save the These preparations it will be rememgiants from being eaten by the rats, one bered were for the setting forth of the Midshilling and four-pence.” There was an summer-watch at Chester, so late as the item in the estimate-“ For the new mak- reign of Charles II. After relating these ing the city mount, called the maior's particulars, Mr. Strutt aptly observes, mount, as auntiently it was, and for hire- that exhibitions of this kind for the diIng of bays for the same, and a man to versions of the populace, are well descarry it, three pounds six shillings and cribed in a few' lines from a dramatic eight-pence.” Twenty-pence was paid to piece, entitled “ A pleasant and stately a joiner for cutting pasteboard into se-. Morall of the Three Lordes of London:”veral images for the “merchant's mount,”
“ Let nothing that's magnifical,
25th, 1755, informed me that Mr. Horne,
according to an established custom at In the parishes of Congresbury and Magdalen-college in Oxford, had begun Puxton, are two large pieces of common
to preach before the university on the land, called East and West Dolemoors, day of St. John the baptist. "For the (from the Saxon dal, which signifies a preaching of this annual sermon, a permashare or portion,) which are divided into nent pulpit of stone is inserted into a single acres, each bearing a peculiar and
corner of the first quadrangle; and, so different mark cut in the turf; such as a long as the stone pulpit was in use, horn, four oxen and a mare, two oxen and a (of which I have been a witness,) thé mare, a pole-axe, cross, dung-fork, oven, quadrangle was furnished round the sides duck's-nest, hand-reel, and hare's-tail
, with a large fence of green boughs, that On the Saturday before Old-Midsummer, the preaching might more nearly resemble several proprietors of estates in the that of John the baptist in the wilderparishes of Congresbury, Puxton, and ness; and a pleasant sight it was : but Week St. Lawrence, or their tenants, for many years the custom has been disassemble on the commons. A number continued, and the assembly have thought of apples are previously prepared, marked it safer to take shelter under the roof of in the same manner with the before-men- the chapel.” tioned acres, which are distributed by a young lad to each of the commoners from
Pulpits. a bag or hat. At the close of the distri- Without descanting at this time on the bution each person repairs to his allot- manifold construction of the pulpit, it ment, as his apple directs him, and takes may be allowable, perhaps, to observe, possession for the ensuing year. An that the ambo, or first pulpit, was an adjournment then takes place to the elevation consisting of iwo flights of house of the overseer of Dolemoors, (an stairs; on the higher was read the gosofficer annually elected from the tenants,) pel, on the lower the epistle. The where four acres, reserved for the purpose pulpit of the present day is that fixture in of paying expenses, are let by inch of the church, or place of worship, occupied candle, and the remainder of the day is by the minister while he delivers his spent in that sociability and hearty mirth sermon. Thus much is observed for the so congenial to the soul of a Somersetshire present, in consequence of the mention of yeoman.*
the Oxford pulpit; and for the purpose of
introducing the representation of a FLORAL DIRECTORY,
markably beautiful structure of this kind,
from a fine engraving by Fessard in Our Lady's Slipper. Cypripedium 1710. Calceolus.
This pulpit is larger than the pulpit of Dedicated to St. Etheldreda.
the church of England, and the other Protestant pulpits in our own country. It
is a pulpit of the Romish church with a June 24.
bishop preaching to a congregation of
high rank. It is customary for a Roman Nativity of St. John the Baptist. The Catholic prelate to have the ensigns of his
Martyrs of Rome under Nero, A. D. prelacy displayed in the pulpit, and hence 64. St. Bartholomew.
they are so exhibited in Fessard's print.
This, however, is by no means so large as Midsummer-day. other pulpits in Romish churches, which
are of increased magnitude for the purNativity of St. John the Baptist.
pose of congregating the clergy, when At Oxford on this day there was lately their occupations at the altar have ceased, a remarkable custom, mentioned by the before the eye of the congregation; and Rev. W. Jones of Nayland, in his “Life of hence it is common for many of them to Bishop Horne," affixed to the bishop's sit robed, by the side of the preacher, works. He says,
letter of July the during the sermon.
. Collinson's Somersetshire.