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Scott's TALLY 10! TO TIE Fox.

despite of Lord Holland's authority. First, my recollection Sir Walter Scott's appointment as Clerk of Ses- lished at the time the words of the song—the burden being,

is clear and strong of this fact, that the newspapers pubsion, was notified in the Gazette, March 8th, 1806; a

I think, not “Tally-ho !” but “ Hark, hark! to the death nomination that at the time was looked on by many of of the Fox.” It was published as Sir W. Scott's composithe Government adherents with any thing but feelings tion, and as having been sung at a " Pitt dinner.” of satisfaction. In short it was almost immediately Second, after my discussion with Mr. Moore, I happened after a Whig ministry had gazetted his nomination, to meet Mrs. Dugald Stewart, widow of the moral philoalthough a known Tory, to the office, that had for twelve sopher, and mentioned the subject to her : she raised her months been a principal object of his ambition, that, hands and eyes in astonishment at Mr. Moore's having rebelling against the implied suspicion of his having contradicted the story, saying her husband had broken off accepted something like a personal obligation at the all intimacy with Sir Walter in resentment, and, I think hands of adverse politicians, he soon after put himself she said, had shut his door against him; moreover, that the forward as a decided Tory partisan.

only point doubtful was, whether Sir Walter had not also first measures of the Whig ministry, and although the bear testimony to this. The impeachment of Lord Melville was among the sung the song at the dinner.

There must be people in Edinburgh still alive who can ex-minister was, as to all the charges involving his

Yours respectfully, personal honour ultimately acquitted, yet the investi

W. NAPIEP., Lieutenant-General. gation brought forward so many circumstances by no Dec. 26. means creditable to his discretion, that it was with an ill

The annexed reply was elicited and printed on the the rejoicings of his friends, of whom Scott grace

29th. was one of the most zealous, were scornfully jubilant; such they were, however, in Edinburgh, and at a public SIR,—I observe in your paper of this date, a letter from dinner given in honour of Melville's acquittal, on June Lieutenant-General Sir W. Napier, respecting a song said by 27, 1806, Scott performed his part by writing the Song, him to have been written for the Pitt Club, at ihe time entitled, “ Health to Lord Melville.” It was sung to Mr. Fox was dying. It is to be regretted that the gallant the air of Carrickfergus, by James Ballantyne, and hailed | General did not take more pains to be certain of the fact

before he repeated the assertion, which had already been with rapturous applause. The song was printed in the disposed of in so decided a manner by the late Lord Holnewspapers at the time, but is not embodied in the land. collected edition of Scott's poetical works.*

The song in question was written for the celebration of The song, it is admitted by Lockhart, his son-in-law | Lord Melville's acquittal, and sung at a dinner given in and biographer, gave great offence to many sincere Edinburgh for that purpose on the 27th of June, 1806. personal friends, whom Scott numbered among the Mr. Fox at that time was not known to be ill, nor did upper ranks of the Whigs; it created a marked coldness his death take place until the 13th of September, of the from several towards him, which as his letters show saine year., wounded his feelings severely—the more so, because a little

Perhaps you will be kind enough to insert this in reflection must have made him repent not a few of the your dext paper, as it is most unjust to Sir Walter Scott's allusions. Scott's Tory prejudices as exemplified in the memory to leave the assertion of Sir W. Napier uncontrasong, had however fallen into a slumber that has been

I have the honour to be, your most obedient servant, awakened by the recent publication of Moore's Diary, Dec. 28.

SENEX. by Lord John Russell, and General Napier, the party

The words of the song to which Sir William alludes are who has considered himself aggrieved, has occasioned

thesethe following correspondence, wholly addressed to the Times journal, in defence, it must be admitted, of a

In GRENVILLE and SPENCER, defective remembrance of all the circumstances.

And some few good men, Sir, The following, addressed to the Editor, appeared in

Great talents we honour, slight difference forgive;

But the Brewer we'll hoax, the Times on the 28th ultimo.

Tally ho! to the Fox! SIR,- I request, as favour, the insertion in The Times

And drink • Melville for ever' as long as we live. of this my reply to the following passage from Mr. Thomas Moore's diary, published by Lord John Russell —

These lines constitute the concluding portion of the “ Asked Lord H. (Holland) about the story Napier tells eighth and last verse. Lockhart has the commencement of Sir W. Scott having written a song for the Pitt Club of the third line . High talents we honour.' while Fox was dying, the burden of which was . Tally-ho! to the Fox. Not a word of truth in it, as I told Napier

On January 3rd appeared the followingwhen he mentioned the wretched calumny."

SIR,— Your correspondent “Senex” may be, and no doubt Thus to be quoted as the careless reporter of a “ wretched is, a very respectable old lady; but I cannot, without the calumny" does not suit me, and I will now give the ground honour of knowing her, accept such testimony in opposition for repeating my assertion, with a full belief in its truth, to that of Mrs. Dugald Stewart. Her memory, also, seems

impaired, for she gives but one verse of a song by Sir Walter • It is printed entire in Lockhart's Life of Scott, edit. Scott, the rest, I suppose, not suiting her purpose; more1839, vol. ii. pp. 323–326.

over, it appears to me more than doubtful that it is taken

ment.

from the song in question. However, my object in writing tiful lines that ever issued from his pen, in the poem which now is to introduce the following letter, which furnishes was published soon after that statesman was lost to the testimony from another lady-better known to the world nation. I am, sir, your obedient servant, than Mrs. Senex-as to the truth of my version respecting Jan. 3.

H. Sir Walter Scott's conduct. Dec. 31. W. NAPIER, Lieutenant-General.

Sir,—The gallant, but not very courteous General might MY DEAR SIR WILLIAM,—I see a letter of yours in The have employed his time to better purpose than in his effort Times of yesterday, referring to a passage in Moore's Diary to bolster up the original slander. respecting Sir Walter's song. I passed two winters in My only reason for not giving the whole song was its Edinburgh-1817, 1818—and then was well acquainted length. It may be seen on page 107 of the second volume with Mrs. Grant of Laggan, a good Tory. Eulogizing of Lockkart's Life of Scott, who likewise states that it was Scott, she mentioned to me, as the only blemish in his life, sung by James Ballantyne at the dinner mentioned in my the composition of the song referred to, and his singing it last letter. A reference to it will show that the lines quoted at a Pitt dinner.

by me are the only ones that have anything to do with the Of course, I heard the story from others, but it was a subject. subject which the friends of Scott avoided. Moore could I fear that even this reference will not be sufficient to have no good authority for his contradiction of your state- satisfy Sir William ; but I feel confident that every one else

will agree with me that Sir Walter Scott is fully exonerated Use this statement if it can be of any service, without from the charge, and that Sir W. Napier's opinion, founded the name, which is of no authority on such a subject. on gossiping recollections of his own and others, is of no The controversy closed by the publication of the fol

value whatever. lowing in the Times on the 4th inst.

With many apologies for trespassing on your valuable

time, I have the honour to be, your obedient servant, SIR,—Lieutenant-General Sir William Napier, with cha- Jan. 3.

Senex. racteristic perseverance, but with small civility to your correspondent “Senex," is determined never to be in the

AN INEDITED LETTER OF SIR WALTER Scott. wrong. Let us hope that “the modern Polybius" has not always been so slow in consulting the most obvious autho- Addressed to Alexander Mundell, Esq. Barrister-atrities for assertions affecting, as in this case, the reputation Law, Parliament Street, London. of the dead. Here was a grave charge against Sir Walter Scott, though generously refuted when first made by Mr. with pleasure that my long depending business is at

My Dear Sir,-From your kind letter I perceive Mr. Lockhart's biography was at hand, and was above length accomplished. My best respects attend Mr. suspicion. Accordingly, in the second volume of that Harrison, and I shall not fail to keep his directions in work Sir William would have found the song printed at mind. Indeed as I have planning and planting in view, length, with all the circumstances attending the production I dare say my Pegasus will not be over-weighted, as of it. I cannot suppose that Sir William would venture the Jockies say, by this accession of fortune.* to charge Mr. Lockbart either with forgery, garbling, or Pray let me know the account of fees, and so forth, suppression. In short, the song was written before it was that I may put myself out of your debt, so far as money known even to Mr. Fox's own colleagues that his health can do so, for your attention to this matter. The friendly was in anything like a precarious state, and was not sung exertions you have made in my behalf merit my best at a Pitt dinner, but at one given to celebrate Lord Mela thanks : assuredly my Christmas cheer has digested ville's acquittal. Mr. Fox's name is only once mentioned much better for the pleasure of your correspondence. or expressly alluded to in the stanza correctly quoted by “ Senex;" and lastly, was not sung by Scott himself, but | Believe me ever, your faithful and obliged, by Ballantyne. Sung it himself! One would think that

WALTER Scott. the words he put into the mouth of his own Frank Osbal

Edinburgh, January 7th, 1812. diston (though it was evidently Scott himself who spoke) must have been prophetic :

SUFFOLK BALLAD LORE.—The extensive collection of “ It has even been reported by my maligners, that I sang a song while under this influence; but, as I remember ballads, traditionary and historical verses, in reference nothing of it, and never attempted to turn a tune before or

to the County of Suffolk, formed by the late Rev. James since, I would willingly hope there is no foundation for such Ford, editor of the Suffolk Garland; the late Augustine a gross calumny."

Page, editor of the Supplement to Kirby's Suffolk ** Senex,” for anything I know, may be “an old woman,” Traveller; and other collections, are now preparing for but his authority even Sir William must admit is as good as publication, as a second and considerably enlarged that of Mrs. Dugald Stewart, or Mrs. Grant of Laggan, who, edition of the Suffolk Garland. perhaps, were never old. There may be a fond partiality in that of his son-in-law, and, therefore, I will not insist on Sir William's taking it for granted, as asserted by Mr. • In January, 1812, Scott entered upon the enjoyment Lockhart, that Sir Walter never wrote but this one lam- of his proper salary as a Clerk of Session, that with his poon (which is bad enough to be harmless), and that he Sheriffdom, gave him from this time, till very near the close recorded his regret at this only ill-natured reference to the of his life, a professional income of sixteen hundred pounds honoured name of Charles Fox by some of the most beau- a year.

WILLIS'S CURRENT

CURRENT NOTES.

No. XXXVIII.]

“ Takes note of what is done
By note to give and to receive.”-SHAKESPEARE.

[FEBRUARY, 1854.

38

CUCKING OR DUCKING STOOLS FOR SCOLDS.

Katherine Sanders, accused by the church wardens of

St. Andrews, for a common scold, and slanderer of her The Cucking-stool was a means adopted for the neighbours; adjudged to the Ducking-stool. punishment of scolds and incorrigible women by ducking The Church wardens' and Overseers' Accounts of Kingthem in the water, after having secured them in a chair ston-upon-Thames, 1572, detail the following bill of or stool, fixed at the end of a long pole, serving as a

expenses lever by which they were immersed in some muddy or

The making of the Cucking-stool

88 stinking pond. Blount notices it was in use in the time

Iron-work for the same of the Anglo-Saxons, by whom it was called Scealfing- Timber for the same

78 reole, and described to be Cathedra in qua rixosæ Three brasses for the same, and three wheels 4s 100 mulieres sedentes aquis demergebantur; he also observes it was anciently a punishment inflicted upon charge

And in those for Lichfield, in 1578, occurs a similar bakers and brewers transgressing the laws.

" In Germany, cowards, sluggards, debauchees and For making a Cuck-stool with appurtenances 8s. prostitutes were suffocated in mires and bogs ;" Henry* adds, “it is not improbable that these useless members

Clarke* describes a Chair at and pests of human society were punished in the same

Ipswich, that was formerly used manner, in this island;" questioning at the same time,

there as a Ducking-stool, and in a note—“ Is not the Ducking-stool a relic of this last

from the accompanying minute kind of punishment ?"

representation will be seen to The practice of ducking scolds, though now obsolete,

have been a machine, formed as continued till within the last century; and corporate

a common chair, but by the iron bodies were required to furnish themselves with these

frame, was affixed and suspended appliances, as they are now enforced to provide and

by a rope, at the end of a transmaintain fire-engines.

verse beam, or crane, above the In 1552, at the Manor-court of Edgeware, the inha

water, for lowering or raising it, bitants were prosecuted for not having a Tumbrel and

and the delinquent was thus Cucking-stool; the former for the punishment of bra

soused into the water. The seat ciatores. The accompts of the Corporation of Banbury,

and the back, are alike open. in Oxfordshire, notice

The Corporation Accompts of Gravesend, have fre1556. Paid to Jhon Awod for making of sarten Staples quent entries in reference to the Cucking-stool, and are and Hokes for the Kockestoll.

probably indicative of the occasions it was required for
The Staples here men- the public service-
tioned, are shewn in the

1628. Nov. 9. Paid unto Mildman for mend-
annexed wood-cut, as
ing the Cucking-stool

78
fixed to the oak-chair ; 1629. Sept. 4. Paid unto the Wheeler for
the hooks being attached timber for mending the Cucking-stool 38 40
to the ropes, for lowering 1635. Oct. 23. Paid for two Wheeles and
the scold, seated in the
Yeekes for the Ducking-stool

38 6d machine, into the water, 1636. Jan. 7. Paid the porters for ducking

28 and raising it again.

of Goodwife Campion

1646. June 12. Paid two porters for laying The Proceedings in the Vice-Chancellor's Court of

up the Ducking-stoole

84 Cambridge, 1559, 1st Eliz., record

1653. Paid John Powell for mending the
Ducking-stoole

Os Jane Johnson, adjudged to the Duckeing-stoole for scoulding, and commuted her penance.

1680. Paid Gattlett for a proclamation, and

for carrying the Ducking-stoole in market 18 60 • History of Great Britain, vol. i. p. 214.

The Cucking-stool, or as it was sometimes called the + The woodcut represents the old Cucking-stool, formerly belonging, as it was said, to the Corporation of Ducking-stool, was in use long after the date of these Worcester, and sold fifteen years since at Oxenham's Rooms,

• History of Ipswich, 1830, 8vo. p. 298. in Oxford Street.

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VOL. IV.

entries; but the practice having been discontinued, the ESCROQUER.— In the Quarterly Review, for Septemmachine with its appendages are not now found among ber last, in an excellent article on “ The Institute of the Chattels of the Corporation. That belonging to France, it is related, p. 322, as an instance of the Gravesend, was placed upon wheels, and by the minis- proneness of lexicographers to make their dictionaries tration of porters, was run or plunged with the occupant the vehicle of their prejudices, or their wrongs, that into the Thames, at an inclined plane called the Horse Richelet, in his once popular dictionary, thus exemplifies Wash' at the Town Quay; no other place being adapted the word Escroquer :for the operation, within the town; and farther, the "The son of François Herrard de Vitri (escroqué) swindled Corporation Accounts show that the porters were not M. Richelet of ten louis-dores, and that scoundrel, instead only recompensed for ducking the scold, but also for of retrieving the misconduct of his son, by restoring what replacing it in its wonted deposit in the market.

he had basely (escroqué) swindled, had the insolence to In Whimsies: or a New Cast of Characters, 1631, approve what he hud done, and in a foolish note, to thank duod,; the author speaking of a Xantippean says— He, M. Richelet for his generosity.' (her husband) vowes therefore to bring her in all dis

On turning to my 'nouvelle edition of Richelet, grace to the Cucking-stoole, and she vowes againe to printed in 1759, I find under the word Escroqué, no bring him, with all contempt to the Stoole of repentance."

such statement, but the following :- Brusquet, fameux Misson describes the operation of the Cucking-stool, as

Boufon escroqua subtilement une chaine d'or que le Roi

avoit donnée à un Boufon de l'Empereur,' for which he witnessed by him

cites Perroniana, p. 39. Some of your readers may The way of punishing scolding women is pleasant enough, possibly be able to say, if any other edition of Richelet's they fasten an arm chair to the ends of two beams, twelve Dictionary contains the anecdote stated by the writer of or fifteen feet long, and parallel to each other, so that these the article in question. two pieces of wood with their two ends, embrace the chair,

In the same article, p. 343, the author says, “We which hangs between them upon a sort of axle, by which means it plays freely, and always remains in a horizontal night really even parody the famous line of Molière :

“Tant de fiel entre-t-il dans l'âme des savans. position, that a person may conveniently sit in it, whether you raise it up or let it down. They set a post upon the

Is this not an error, in ascribing the line on which bank of a pond or river, and over the post they lny almost the parody is made to Molière, instead of to Boileau, in equilibrio, the two beams, at the ends of which, the chair who in his Lutrin has the line, hangs just over the water; they place the woman in the “ Tant de fiel entre-t-il dans l'âme des devôts." chair, and so plunge her into the water, as often as the a well known parody of the line in Virgil, sentence directs, in order to cool her immoderate heat.

“ Tantæne animis cælestibus iræ ?"

Æn. lib. 1. v. 15. Gay in his third Pastoral, entitled “The Dumps,' thus describes the Cucking-stool

ROBERT BURNS' Sıx “ BELLES OF MAUCHLINE." I'll speed me to the Pond, where the high Stool On the long plank, hangs o'er the muddy pool;

Died, last week, at Edinburgh, Mrs. Candlish, forThat Stool, the dread of ev'ry scolding Queun.

merly Miss Jean Smith, the last of the six “belles of Mauchline,' to whom the verses of Burns have given

celebrityBut the graphic il- Miss Miller is fine, Miss Markland's divine, lustration, drawn Miss Smith she has wit, and Miss Betty is braw, by Du Guernier, re- There's beauty and fortune to get wi' Miss Morton, presents a

But Armour's the jewel for me o' them a'. what different ad-Miss Miller became the wife of the poet's friend, Dr. justment: the Mackenzie ; Miss Markland was married to Finlay, an plank, as shewn in excise officer at Greenock; Miss Betty Miller became a the woodcut, works Mrs. Templeton; and Miss Morton a Mrs. Paterson. apparently on The husband of Jean Smith was Mr. Candlish, a medipivot between two cal man; and her son is the Rev. Dr. Candlish, of Edinposts.

burgh, whose eloquence and ability confirm the shrewd

discrimination of the poet. Other pictorial illustrations will be acceptable.

North British Daily Mail, Feb. 3. * “ The stools of infamy are the Ducking-stool and the Stool of repentance. The first was invented for taming SCOTLAND'S CURSE.—Why is the playing card, the female shrews. The stool of repentance is an ecclesiastical nine of diamonds, said to be the Curse of Scotland ?' engine, of Popish extraction, for the punishment of fornica- Totteridge.

EUPHEMIA. tion and other immoralities, whereby the delinquent pub- William, Duke of Cumberland, is said to have dispatched licly takes shame to himself, and receives a solemn repri- his sanguinary orders, at the close of the battle of Culloden, mund from the minister of the parish.”—Gentleman's Ma- written on the back of a playing-card, the Nine of Dia: gazine, 1732, p. 740.

monds; no other or better writing-material being at hand. + Travels in England, transl. by Ozell, 1719, 8vo. p. 65. Hence its popular denouncement.

some

a

-

low price.

Bewick. Current Notes, vol. iv, p. 2.-My friend, Mr. J. G. Bell, is mistaken as to the number of · Wild

EARLY SIGNIFICANCY OF THE CHRISTMAS TREE. Bulls' taken off on vellum. This singularly beautiful production originated on the suggestion of the late Mar

Christmas in Berlin has its joys, even though the maduke Tunstall, the founder of what is now a portion roast beef and old holly of Old England be not there : of the Newcastle Museum, and if S. F. refers to Fox's the bright clear air, through which one can see and Synopsis of that collection, he will there find some hear to an incredible distance; the glittering snow that interesting notices of Bewick, his Wild Bull, and his lies on the ground and covers the trees, retaining its History of British Birds. Six impressions were printed purity for weeks ; the happy family groups out on their on fine vellum for Mr. Tunstall, and from my own en- festag walk; the children parading in the last night's quiries I should think there are at least a dozen proofs tippet and muff; the hilarity of the skaters; the merry in this state. One was sold in London, last autumn, tinkling of the bells on the harness of the sledge, as it and purchased by a bookseller in Newcastle at a very glides by with its happy freight, and its horses flaunting

in many coloured feathers and their long housings of South Shields.

white kerseymere. These are the out-of-doors jcys to LUKE MACKEY.

which the foreigner has free access; but the in-doors delights of the Christmas Tree and the bescheerung, or

present-giving, of the children, and of everybody, from KENNEDY. Current Notes, vol. iv. P: 3.–William and to everybody, are confined to those only who are Kennedy was a native of the North of Ireland, and edu- members of families, and are not extended to the cated at the Belfast Academical Institution. Like many stranger who is within the gates. The all but universal another son of Irish genius, after giving numerous proofs jubilee leaves him alone in his domicile, uninvited to of the brilliant powers of which he was possessed, he break the spell of any family circle. The Christmastransferred his literary allegiance to England; and had tree has become a prevailing fashion in England at this not long settled there when he became editor of the season, and is by most persons supposed to be derived Hull Advertiser. Subsequently he obtained a govern- from Germany; such, however, is not the fact; the ment appointment in Australia, and was murdered by Christmas-tree is from Egypt, and its origin dates from the aborigines. The writer had the privilege of his a period long antecedent to the Christian era. The early friendship, and a gentler spirit never wedded palm tree is known to put forth a shoot every month, poesy. I ain not sure that his poetry has been published and a spray of this tree, with twelve shoots on it, was in a collected form.

used in Egypt, at the time of the winter solstice as a Recorder Office, Downpatrick. JAMES A. PILSON. symbol of the year completed.

Egyptian associations of a very early date still min

gle with the tradition and custom of the ChristmasDINING WITH Duke Humphrey.—Whence the origin tree; there are as many pyramids, as trees used in of this saying?

R. F.

Germany, in the celebration of Christmas by those

whose means do not admit of their purchasing trees Humphrey Plantagenet, Duke of Gloucester, who died in and the concomitant tapers. These pyramids con1446, was the founder of the library at Oxford, subse- sist of slight erections of slips of wood, arranged like quently so enriched by Sir Thomas Bodley and others, that a pyramidal epergne, covered with green paper, and it has now the wide world appellation of the Bodleian. decorated with festoons of paper chain-work, which flutWhen a student remained reading in the library, during ter in the wind, and constitute a make-believe foliage ; the hours of dinner, at which time the doors are closed, he this latter, however, is an innovation of modern days. was said, on missing him at the college table to be “ Dining The palm tree spray of Egypt, on reaching Italy, bewith Duke Humphrey"-dinnerless in the library, devoted to his studies.

came a branch of any other tree; the tip of the fir being found most suitable, from its pyramidal or conical shape, was decorated with burning tapers lighted in

honour of Saturn, whose saturnalia were celebrated THE KINGES AND GOUERNOURS OF ENGLAND.

from the 17th, to the 21st of December, the period of Two Wills, Hal, Stephen, Henry then againe ;

the winter solstice ; the lighted tapers, the saturnalitia, Dicke, Jacke, third Henry, Edwards three in traine ; or presents given, and the entertainment of the domesSecond Dicke, three more Hals, Ned the fourth, and tics on a footing of equality, date from this age. After y'other,

the saturnalia came the days called the sigillaria, Crumpe Dicke, seventh, eighth Hals, Ned, Moll, Besse noe when presents were made of impressions stamped on mother;

wax, which still form part of the furniture of a ChristJemmye, Charles, and C. and ? may bee nere another : mas-tree. To the sigillaria succeeded one day, called Parliaments five or six, Oliuer and Red Jumpe

the juvenalia, on which every person, even adults, inInstrument and Humulement, Richard and the Rumpe. dulged in childish sports, and hence the romping close 1659. Contemporary Manuscript.

of our Christmas festivities.

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