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the years 1387 and 1388, on the islands of Scokholm, Scalmey, and Middleholm. The catch consisted of 3120 rabbits, from which tithe in kind had been deducted. Of these, 2318 had been sold skinned, apparently in Haverford west ; 802 were consumed by two couple of ferrets, a most liberal allowance, but perhaps the gentle beasts shared them with the ferreters. £11 98. 2d. is respited, being the value of 3000 rabbit-skins taken in the previous year, and charged for as if they had been sold in Haverfordwest, but as a matter of fact these skins were sent to Bristol, and while waiting at Dyneb (Tenby) were stored in a wet place for a week, and again further wetted, both on the sea, during the passage, and in a damp storehouse at Bristol, whereby they became rotten and of no value at all. Unfortunately, we do not learn what was the price received for the rabbits' carcases.
Strange obsolete words occasionally turn up. In the year 1401-5 Phillip Jany, who was the tenant of Trauger (Trefgarne), at a rental of 8s., had the said rent remitted to enable him to re-erect a tenement on his holding; he also received 18. 6d. for making sixteen clad in the wood of Trauger, to put under the lead on Haverford Castle to preserve it. Our editor states that clads were wattled hurdles, and as they came out of Trefgarne wood he is probably right, but mats made of reed were often used for this purpose.
On page 30 we find the place name Coppidbusshe. There are several farms so called in the county, and some folks connect the word with Copyhold, which is a mistake, for it is related to copse, and means a piece of brushwood, which was divided into plots, one of which was annually cut for firewood.
We must congratulate Dr. Owen on having accomplished a very conscientious piece of work, and shall anxiously look out for the sister volumes on Pembroke and Tenby, which, we understand, will shortly appear.
THE ROMAS ERA IN BRITAIN. By John WARI), F.S.A.
. In this volume on The Roman Era in Britain, Mr. Jolin Ward has furnished archaeologists and others, who, in increasing numbers, are taking an intelligent interest in bygone times, trustworthy information which is scattered in a vast number of antiquarian papers, not always easily accessible. It is a sequel to an earlier volume in the series of Antiquarian Handbooks, Romano-British Earthworks and Buildings. Mr. Ward courteously acknowledges his indebtedness to the hearty co-operation of curators of museums, which has enabled him to illustrate his work copiously from the various “finds " preserved in these institutions. The Roman Era lasted about 450 years.
What four centuries and a half mean the author helps us to realise very vividly by reminding us of the contrast between the times of Henry VI. with
our own-a period without the printing press, steam power, railways, steamships, telegraphs, gas and electricity ; before America was discovered, or our vast colonial empire was founded. He justly argues that in the period from the Claudian Conquest in a D. 43 to the final withdrawal of the Roman legions, c. 410, the changes brought about under Roman influence were no less remarkable and far-reaching. Some useful maps strengthen this contrast-the physical map, showing the forests, marshes, and elevations exceeding 300 ft., which determined (Fig. 2) the distribution of the civilian population, and the roads and towns in Roman times, with a third map showing the railroads and regions of densest population at the present day.
Still more suggestive is the section in which he treats of the natural resources and industries. Coal, which is of such vital importance to Britain, now pre-eminently a manufacturing people, was of little value to the Roman-Britons, essentially agriculturists, whereas wheat, upon the free importation of which the national safety depends at present almost entirely, was grown in such abundance in this country that the Emperor Julian in the fourth century arranged for the conveyance by 600 vessels of a supply from Britain to relieve scarcity in the Rhenish countries.
The chapter on the structure and distribution of the roads is most helpful and suggestive. Truly characteristic of the masterly organising power of the Romans, imperial in their comprehensiveness, they had, in addition to their military use, an operative influence in breaking down the mutual antipathies of the semiisolated British tribes, and hasiening their acceptance of Roman rule. The author points out how the Roman routes were along lines almost identical with those of the main lines of railway: Watling Street to Deva (Chester) being the Roman L. and N. W. main line, continued to Carnarvon and the Menai Straits by a route which the Irish Mail of to-day closely follows; how remarkably the G.W.R. from London to South Wales was anticipated, and how the Great Northern Expresses from London to Scotland follow much the same line as Erming Street.
The Roman engineers had a decided preference for high ground, owing to the swampy and thickly-wooded condition of the valleys at the time, but they did not, as is popularly believed, keep to an undeviating straight line. The route was direct but not straight, and instead of negotiating difficult gradients by curves, they continued the route by straight lines forming angles with one another.
The forts and camps hy which the Romans made their conquest secure, and the several types of houses in which they lived, are set forth in greater detail in the earlier volume referred to.
A valuable chapter, adequately illustrated, describes the chief characteristics of the pottery found in such abundance on Roman sites. Here, again, Mr. Ward rightly contests the common opinion that the potter's wheel was a Roman introduction, vessels of artistic form being produced in this island long before the Roman Era, while the Samian or terra sigillata was decidedly an importation from the Continent.
Chapter X., on glass and metal utensils, is not so full and elaborate. Due mention is made of the colanders found at Kyngadle (Arch. Camb., 1901, p. 21), and the Abergele bronze vessels. The fire-dogs found at Mt. Bures, near Colchester, and Capel Garmon, Denbighshire (the bars and hook-like projections of which were used, as supposed, to support cooking utensils or to hang toasters), have been declared by Professor Boyd Dawkins to be really holders for amphora.
Attention is directed to the varying quality of the workmanship on altars and tombstones, “ good, bad, and indifferent”; some of those found in the vicinity of military centres being the products of men who were better soldiers than stone-cutters; others again made by skilled masons.
Several at Chester have sculptured in relief a “sepulchral banquet,” probably originating in the practice of ancestor worship. The deceased is represented as reclining on a couch, with a small tripod table in front, and holding a goblet in the right hand : and there is usually a juvenile attendant before or behind the couch.
Another type of tombstone (of which there are several in the Chester Museum) represents a horseman riding over a fallen barbarian, sometimes in the act of spearing him.
An interesting tombstone in the Chester Museum, briefly mentioned by Mr. Ward, deserves perhaps fuller notice. The figures are in high relief, of a Centurion of the Twentieth Legion and his wife, who erected it. The lower part of the female figure is treated on a disproportionately small scale, probably from economy. The stone is noteworthy because it has on the left side the formula sub ascia d[edicatum), and above it a representation of two mason's tools, the ascia being one. The formula, according to Dr. Haverfield, seems to mean that the stone was dedicated while still incomplete. It is much used in Southern Gaul, but rarely elsewhere, and this is said to be its only appearance in Britain.
The curiously-worded dedication on the Risinghain altar, p. 103, Nymphis verandis is apparently for venerandis. The altar with double front, found near Chester, now in the Gardens at Eaton Hall, has the inscription, "Nymphis et Fontibus."
The inscription on the tombstone, p. 151, in memory of P. Rustius, is remarkable for the number of ligulate letters, six in as many lines, and the concluding letters are fac. CVR.
Mention is made of an altar at Chester to Jupiter Taranus, p. 104. The inscription is 1.0.M. TANARO, “which (according to Hubner) is a local name occurring only in this single instance, and therefore not easy to explain." It is undoubtedly connected with the Teutonic Thunor. The reading given by Mr. Ward suggests a connection with the Welsh word for thunder. This altar was discovered in Foregate Street, Chester in 1648, 7 ft. below the surface. It is not now in Chester, but was removed in 1675 to the Ashmolean Museum.
We must close this notice with referring our readers to the fascinating account of the very numerous relics of Roman life in Britain preserved for us in various museums after the lapse of eighteen centuries --the grotesque lamps and lamp-stands, candlesticks, scales, strigils, oculist's stamps, school tablets and stili, bone and bronze needles, seal boxes, personal jewellery, the curiously shaped “Celtic key,” the discs for games found in great numbers at Caerwent, Gellygaer, Llant wit.
Hearty thanks are due to Mr. Ward for giving us in this work, within convenient compass, well arranged and excellently "got up, the results of considerable labour and research.
CATALOGUE OF TRACTS OF THE Civil WAR AND COMMONWEALTH
Period RELATING TO WALES AND THE BORDERS.-National
Library of Wales, Aberystwyth. 28. 6d. net. Mr. Join Ballinger has rendered valuable service to historical students by putting together this catalogue of tracts, now in the National Library of Wales. These tracts, often neglected in libraries or hidden away as of little importance, are most useful in illustrating the course of events in those troublous times. Mr. Ballinger has not only included in this volume the publications dealing with the actual operations of the Civil War, so far as they relate to Wales, but also other tracts of a kindred nature, because they were written by or relate to Welshmen, or persons prominently connected with Welsh affairs. They include such names as James Howell (“Dodona's Grove "), a native of Carmarthenshire ; Judge David Jenkins (the sturdy Royalist, imprisoned in Newgate), of Hensol Castle, Glamorgan ; Arise Evans, a native of Merionethshire ; Griffith Williams, Bishop of Ossory, a Carmarthenshire man; Thomas Herbert, born at Montgomery, and a brother of Lord Herbert, of Chirbury; William Thomas, of Aber, Carnarvonshire, M.P. for Carnarvon.
An interesting feature is a number of satirical tracts, which show how, after the example of Shakespeare, the Welshman was frequent butt for English witticism.
The satire and ridicule (considerably developed during the Civil War) are due in a measure to the important part which Wales played in the unhappy conflicts. Several of these tracts have reference to “Mistris Parliament." The earliest of these, dated 1648, April 29, describes “Mistris Parliament Brought to Bed of a Monstrous Childe of Reformation ... With the Cruelty of Mistris London, her Midwife; and great affection of Mrs. Synod, her Nurse, Mrs. Schisme, Mrs. Priviledge, Mrs. Ordinance, Mrs. Universal Toleration, and Mrs. Leveller, her Gossips."
By Mercurius Melancholicus : “Printed in the veer of the Saints
The mock imprints of two amongst the satirical tracts gave rise to the fallacy that they were printed by a travelling press which followed the army. They are dated 1648, April 11, “Printed at Pembroke and Mongomery.” They are satires on the Earl of Pembroke and Montgomery, a staunch supporter of the Parliament. He was Visitor of the University of Oxford, and the place of printing was most probably Oxford, then head-quarters of the Royalists. Another, dated February 1642, is entitled “The Welshmens Jubilee : To the Honour of St. David shewing the manner of that solemn Celebration. Describing likewise the true and reall cause why they wear that day a Leek on their Hats.” Other tracts describe the taking of Brecon, Cardiff, Cardigan, Carmarthen, Carnarvon Castle, Chepstow, Conway, Monmouth, Hereford, Aberystwyth, Shrewsbury, Tenby, the siege of Pembroke Castle, Holt, Raglan, Chester, Flint, Montgomery, Oswestry, the surrender of Ruthin and Denbigh Castles. The compiler remarks that, so far as is known, neither the Royalists nor the Parliamentarians made any attempt to influence the Welsh people by means of literature in the native language. A newspaper called The Welsh Mercury appeared in October and November, 1643, but it is not recorded later.
The Transactions of the Carmarthenshire Antiquarian Society, Part XXI, deal with a great variety of subjects. Among the articles are a list of Pembrey Parisha Field-Names ; Laugharne Corporation Minutes, 1711-1786, Early Carmarthenshire Nonconformity; Report on Kidwelly Shell Mounds ; Sir Richard Steele and his wife.
Six Plates, from sketches by Mr. A. Weight Matthews, are given of a fourteenth-century Canopied Cross, reputed to have come from the Rood Church, Carmarthen.”
In the article on Place Names in the Aman Valley, the writer renders Ynys by “meadow," and connects Penty, Penthouse, with “ty = house." The word, however, is of Latin derivation, and occurs as “Pentice" in one of its forms.
The first explanation which the writer gives of Pwll y wrach is undoubtedly the correct one. A collection of instances (with their locality) of the use of the Welsh word for “Hag” would be interesting. Why does the writer so frequently run together the component parts of names, as Pwllywrach, Penrheolddu, Pwllymerched, Tirdanyrheol, Twllygwyddyl? He is not alone in this practice, which, in the interest of Welsh literature, is to be lamented.