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LONDON, SATURDAY, JULY 2, 1870.
NOTES: Towton Field, 1-
richly laden with blossom; the wild flowers beginning to show themselves; the cuckoo and the thrush singing; the sun shining, without which nothing can be beautiful; and the insect world on the wing: that kind of a day, in the happy spring-time of the year, when one calls to mind everything that has been read of the praises of the country in both ancient and modern poets.
QUERIES::-American Knights - Brixton Manor House, Theocritus, Virgil, and happy Horace all loved
Surrey British North America - Celtic Remains at Addington, co. Kent -". - "Civantick Coins in Foundation Stones Cornwall and Cornouaille - Crouching Venus — "Le Fil de la Bonne Vierge (Gossamer Threads) "- Hampshire Country Churchyard The Kerlock Masons' Medals Mortar Mark - “Nortative": "Sororising" Paul's Grove - Paulet of Amport - Portraits of Puritan Divines Queries Slade-Eberhard Tappi of LunaTwo Pagodas - Frederick, Prince of Wales - Weston: Shirley, 5. QUERIES WITH ANSWERS: -"Ferober" and "Dokhmeh The Chief Justice of England Rederiffe "To Pistol - Countess of Sunderland in September "- Keble's" Winter Thrush"-"The Temp
tations of St. Anthony," 7.
REPLIES:- Arms of Slaughter, 9- John Freeth, "the
Kylosbern, Ib. - Sir Walter Scott's Misquotations, 13
A few days ago I set off on foot in order to pay a visit to this place, where the greatest battle in the terrible conflict between the rival houses of York and Lancaster was fought, on Palm Sunday, March 29, 1461:
"Palm Sunday chimes were chiming,
And village men and maidens
Knelt in the church at prayer,
And yeomen fought Aike barons,*
Various names have been assigned to the battle, as "Saxton," "Palm Sunday Field," "Sherburn," "Saxtonfeld," and "Tawtonfeld"; but it is most generally known as the Battle of Towton. Be it observed, that Towton is a hamlet in the parish of Saxton, and no great distance from the market town of Tadcaster, which does not seem to have altered very much since those times.
The afternoon was lovely, and the more appreciated after the protracted winter and cold spring which have marked this year: the apple-trees
The writer of this must have had in his mind Scott's description of the Battle of Flodden, when
"Linked in the serried phalanx tight,
Groom fought like noble, squire like knight,
the country, and found much to interest in the commonest objects of nature; and let me not omit to mention, amongst our own poets, Thomson and Bloomfield, Tennyson and Wordsworth, who have all sung its praises.
The battle-field is easily found, lying about half a mile from the little village of Towton; and the battle was fought in a large meadow, through which the little river Cock winds. Grass grows in rich luxuriance there; and at this day groups of wild dwarf rose-bushes are seen, traditionally said to have been planted on the mounds under which the slain were buried:
The people in the neighbourhood firmly believe that these rose-bushes will alone grow in the 'Bloody Meadow," and that attempts to plant them elsewhere have always been unsuccessful.
The Lancastrians drew up their forces southward of the village of Towton, and numbered sixty thousand; whilst the forces of the Yorkists, drawn ap opposite, were about forty-eight thousand; and the battle commenced at nine o'clock in the morning, the cloth-yard arrows flying like hail. A storm of snow and sleet falling, and driven by the wind in the faces of the Lancastrians, hindered their shooting with accuracy. The combat lasted, according to some authors, ten hours; but, according to others, towards three o'clock in the afternoon the Lancastrians began to give way. They were pursued by their foes, who gave no quarter, and driven through the little river Cock; and such numbers were slain there as to afford a bridge for the survivors to pass over. For several days afterwards the Cock and the Wharfe, into which it flows, are said to have run with blood. The number of the slain is given at 36,776; but this most likely includes those who fell on both sides, and not only in the battle but in the pursuit, and in the skirmish at Ferry bridge on the previous day.
The Cock is an insignificant stream, over which one can stride; but those who know how becks, as they are called, can rise in Yorkshire, in winter and spring, may very easily imagine its swelling to a great size from the melting snow. The meadow through which it flows must have been a fine place for the esquire to fly his hawks, as