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nobleman, in the hands of a foreign barber, is from a caricature of the early part of the seventeenth century.

The value of the book is increased by its two maps. The one at the beginning shows the small limits of Russia before the time of Peter the Great, and the one at the end the vast extent of modern Russia, which covers an area of upwards of 8,500,000 square miles.

frequently, holes and trenches are dug; in these, filled up and rendered invisible by the liquid mud, several free men have fallen down and been in great danger of suffocation. In later times, in proportion as the new-made freemen are more or less popular, the passage is rendered more or less difficult.

Early in the morning of St. Mark's Day the houses of the new freemen are distinguished by a holly-tree planted before each door, as the signal for their friends to assemble and make merry with them. About eight o'clock the candidates for the franchise, being mounted on horseback and armed with

Holy Wells: their Legends and swords, assemble in the market place, where


BY R. C. HOPE, F.S.A., F.R.S.L. (Continued from p. 30, vol. xxii.)



T. MARK'S Day is observed at Alnwick by a ridiculous custom in connection with the admission of freemen of the common, alleged to have reference to a visit paid by King John to Alnwick. It is said that this monarch, when attempting to ride across Alnwick Moor, then called the Forest of Aidon, fell with his horse into a bog or morass, where he stuck so fast that he was with great difficulty pulled out by some of his attendants. Incensed against the inhabitants of that town for not keeping the roads over the moor in better repair, or at least for not placing some post or mark pointing out the particular spots which were impassable, he inserted in their charter, both by way of memento and punishment, that for the future all new created freemen should on St. Mark's Day pass on foot through that morass, called the Freemen's Well. In obedience to this clause of their charter, when any new freemen are to be made, a small rill of water which passes through the morass is kept dammed up for a day or two previous to that on which this ceremonial is to be exhibited, by which means the bog becomes so thoroughly liquefied that a middlesized man is chin deep in mud and water in passing over it. Besides which, not un

they are joined by the chamberlain and bailiff of the Duke of Northumberland, attended by two men armed with halberds. The young freemen arranged in order, with music playing before them and accompanied by a numerous cavalcade, march to the west end of the town, where they deliver their swords. They then proceed under the guidance of the moorgrieves through a part of their extensive domain, till they reach the ceremonial well. The sons of the oldest freemen have the honour of taking the first leap. On the signal being given they pass through the bog, each being allowed to use the method and pace which to him shall seem best, some running, some going slow, and some attempting to jump over suspected places, but all in their turns tumbling and wallowing like porpoises at sea, to the great amusement of the populace, who usually assemble in vast numbers. After this aquatic excursion, they remount their horses and proceed to perambulate the remainder of their large common, of which they are to become free by their achievement. In passing the open part of the common the young freemen are obliged to alight at intervals, and place a stone on a cairn as a mark of their boundary, till they come near a high hill called the Twinlaw or Tounlaw Cairns, when they set off at full speed, and contest the honour of arriving first on the hill, where the names of the freemen of Alnwick are called over. When arrived about two miles from the town they generally arrange themselves in order, and, to prove their equestrian abilities, set off with great speed and spirit over bogs, ditches, rocks, and rugged declivities till they

arrive at Rottenrow Tower on the confines of the town, the foremost claiming the honour of what is termed "winning the boundaries," and of being entitled to the temporary triumphs of the day. Having completed the circuits the young freemen, with sword in hand, enter the town in triumph, preceded by music, accompanied by a large concourse of people in carriages, etc. Having paraded the streets, the new freemen and the other equestrians enter the Castle, where they are liberally regaled, and drink the health of the lord and lady of the manor. The newlycreated burgesses then proceed in a body to their respective houses, and around the hollytree drink a friendly glass with each other. After this they proceed to the market-place, where they close the ceremony over an enlivening bowl of punch.-Hone's Every-Day Book, ii., 249. Dyer's Brit. Pop. Customs, 201, Bohn's Ed.

JARROW: BEde's well.

About a mile to the west of Jarrow, near Newcastle-on-Tyne, there is a well called Bede's Well, to which, as late as the year 1740, it was a prevailing custom to bring children troubled with any disease or infirmity; a crooked pin was put in, and the well laved dry (sic) between each dipping. My informant has seen twenty children brought on a Sunday to be dipped in this well, at which also, on Midsummer Eve, there was a great resort of neighbouring people, with bonfires, music, etc.-Brand's Newcastle, ii., 54.


Near to Wooler, in Northumberland, on the flanks of the Cheviots, there is a spring of water locally known as Pin Well. The countrymaids in passing this spring dropped a crooked pin in the water. There is a belief that the well is under the charge of a fairy, that it is necessary to propitiate the young lady by a present of some sort; hence the pin as most convenient.


There is a medicinal spring about five miles from Alnwick, known as Senna Well.


On some part of the Tweed there exists still a belief amongst the superstitious in the power of fairies, who are supposed to affect

the produce of the fisheries; it is the custom of these persons not only to impregnate the nets with salt, but also to throw some of that commodity into the water for the purpose of blinding the mischievous elves, who are said to prevent the fish from falling victims to the snares laid for them. This practice was observed near Coldstream as late as 1879, and strange to say the net, when drawn to land, instead of being empty, as usual, contained three fine salmon.


The author of Rambles in Northumberland beck: "The river discharges itself into the gives a tradition concerning the river Wanssea at a place called Cambois, about nine miles to the eastward; and the tide flows to within five miles of Morpeth. Tradition reports that Michael Scott, whose fame as a

wizard is not confined to Scotland, would have brought the tide to the town, had not the courage of the person failed upon whom the execution of this project depended. This agent of Michael, after his principal had performed certain spells, was to run from the neighbourhood of Cambois to Morpeth, without looking back, and the tide would follow him. After having advanced a certain distance, he became alarmed at the roaring of the waves behind him, and forgetting the injunction, gave a look over his shoulder to see if the danger was imminent, when the advancing tide immediately stopped, and the burgesses of Morpeth thus lost the chance of having the Wansbeck navigable between their town and the sea. It is also said that Michael intended to confer a similar favour on the inhabitants of Durham, by making the Wear navigable to their city; but his good intentions were frustrated by the cowardice of the person who had to guide the tide."



By a custom, time beyond memory, the mayor and aldermen of Nottingham, with their wives, have been accustomed on Monday in Easter week, morning prayer ended, to march from the town to St. Anne's Well, having the town waits to play before them, and attended by all the clothing, i.e., such as have been sheriffs, and ever after wear scarlet gowns,

together with the officers of the town and many other burgesses and gentlemen, such as wish well to the woodward-this meeting being instituted, and since continued for his benefit.



There was a farmer who had an only daughter. She was very handsome, but proud. One day, when the servants were all afield, her mother sent her to the well for a pitcher of water. When she had let down the bucket, it was so heavy that she could hardly draw it up again; and she was going to let loose of it, when a voice in the well

said: "Hold tight and pull hard; and good

luck will come of it at last." So she held

tight and pulled hard; and when the bucket came up there was nothing in it but a frog, and the frog said: "Thank you, my dear; I've been a long while in the well, and I'll make a lady of you for getting me out." So when she saw it was only a frog, she took no notice, but filled her pitcher and went home.

Now, when they were at supper, a knock was heard at the door, and somebody outside


"Open the door, my dearest one,

And think of the well in the wood;
Where you and I were together, love a-keeping,
And think of the well in the wood."

She looked out of the window, and there was the frog in boots and spurs. To it she said: "I shan't open the door for a frog." But her father said: " Open the door to the gentleman. Who knows what it may come to at last?" So she opened the door, and the frog came in. Then said the frog:

"Set me a chair, my dearest sweetest one,
And think," etc..

"I'm sure I shan't set a chair; the floor's

good enough for a frog." The frog made many requests, to all of which the lady returned uncivil answers. He asked for beer, and was told "water is good enough for a frog"; to be put to bed, but "the cistern is good enough for a frog to sleep in." The father, however, insisted on her compliance; and even when the frog said: "Cuddle my back, my dearest sweet one," ordered her to "for who knows what it may come to And in the morning when she

do so, at last ?"

awoke, she saw by her side the handsomest man that ever was seen, in a scarlet coat and top boots, with a sword by his side, and a gold chain round his neck, and gold rings on his fingers, who married her and made her a lady, and they lived very happy together.N. and Q., 1 S., v., 460.


This well was once famous for curing distempers upon the saint's day, the people diverting themselves with cakes and ale, music and dancing; which was innocent enough in comparison of what had been formerly practised at different places, when even the better sort of people placed a sanctity in them, brought alms and offerings,

and made vows at them, as the ancient Germans and Britains did, and the Saxons Lib., iii., 142. and English were much inclined to.--G. M.


"The Fellows of New College in Oxford have time out of mind every Holy Thursday, betwixt the houres of eight and nine, gonne to ye Hospitall called Bart'lemews, neer Oxford: where they retire to ye Chapell, and certain prayers are read and an antheme sung from thence they goe to the upper end of ye grove adjoyning to the Chapell (the way being beforehand strewed with flowers by the poor people of ye Hospitall), they placed themselves round about the well there, where they warble forth melodiously a song of three or four or five parts; which being performed, they refresh themselves with a morning's draught there, and retire to Oxford before sermon."-Brand's Pop. Ant., ii, 378, Bohn's Ed. Gentilism et Judaism, p. 32.


where St. Edmund, Archbishop of CanterNear St. Clement's, at Oxford, was a spring bury, did sometimes meet and converse with an angel or nymph; as Numa Pompilius did with Egeria. The well is now filled up.


There is, or was, a holy well in Ricot Park. The water was held to be good for the eyes. The keepers formerly performed some ceremony here, before, it is presumed, it was a park.



"In the parish of Chetton there was formerly a holy well or spring. It is not known. whether it had any special dedication, but the church is dedicated to St. Giles, and the waters of the spring were supposed to possess a healing virtue for cripples or weakly persons. The last person who was dipped in the well was Mary Anne Jones, about the year 1817; she subsequently died about 1830, aged twenty-four years, and was the eldest sister of my informant, one of the oldest inhabitants of the parish. Though considerably covered up with undergrowth, the spring is not yet entirely lost."-Miss E. Lythall-Neale.


There is a small holy well in this parish (West Felton), in a hamlet called Woolston. The water of this well is still used by the country people for complaints of the eyes. It is a beautiful clear stream, running under a small black-and-white chapel into two paved square baths environed with stone walls, one of which is lower than the other. The higher one has steps down to the water, and, strange to say, there is more water in summer than in winter. Under the chapel, which overhangs the stream, is a long-shaped niche, which has evidently contained the statue of the saint. At this side is a small cell, or covered place, where probably the priest or monk stood to dispense the water. The chapel is now unfortunately used as a cottage, and the beams of the roof inside are covered with whitewash. At one end there is the tracery of Tudor roses and acanthusleaves, upon what is evidently the framework of a window.


At Crosmere, near Ellesmere, where there is one of the number of pretty lakes scattered throughout that district, there is a tradition of a chapel having formerly stood on the banks of the lake, and it is said that the belief once was, that whenever the waters were ruffled by the wind, the chapel bells might be heard ringing beneath the surface.


The White Lady of Longnor is in the habit of coming out of the Black Pool beside the road to Leebotwood. This pool is bottomless. "Old Nancy," a well-known Longnor worthy, was shocked and scandalized to hear that the parson's children had been so foolhardy as to skate on it in the recent hard winters. The White Lady issues out of it at night, and wanders about the roads. Hughes, the "parson's man" at Longnor, met her once as he was going over the narrow foot-bridge beside the ford over Longnor Brook. "I sid 'er a-cummin'," he said (June, 1881), “an' I thinks, 'Ere's a nice young wench. Well, thinks I, who she be, I'll gi'e 'er a fright. I was a young fellow then, yo' known-an' I waited till 'er come close up to me, right i' the middle o' the bridge, an' I stretched out my arms, so-an' I clasped 'er in 'em tight-so. An' theer was nothin'!

"She came down here to the Villa wunst," he continued, after a dramatic pause. "It was when there was a public kep' here. Joe Wigley, he told me. There was a great party held in the garden, and he was playing the fiddle. And they were all daincin', and she come an' dainced, all in white. And everyone was saying: 'What a nice young 'ooman -Here's the one for me-I'll 'ave a daince ooth 'er'-and so on, like that. And she dainced and dainced ooth 'em, round i' the ring, but they could's niver ketch 'out on 'er 'and. And at last she disappeart of a sudden, and then they found out who it 'ad bin, as 'ad bin daincin' along ooth 'em. And they all went off in a despert hurry, and there was niver no daincing there no more."

Old Nancy declared that this shadowy fair one was the ghost of a lady "as 'ad bin disapp'inted," and had drowned herself in the Black Pool. But "White Ladies" has been a name for the fairies from the days of the romance of Hereward, and the dancing

round in the ring" points out very clearly the class of beings among which the lady of the Black Pool should be placed.—Shropshire Folk-Lore, p. 76.

The "Mountains of the Moon”


HE so-called "Mountains of the Moon," situated at the sources of the Nile, are supposed to have been thus originally designated by the Arabs-Jibalu 'l Kamari-although they have also been known as Jibalu 'l Kumri, or "The Blue Mountains." Ptolemy apparently derived his name of "Mountains of Selene " from the same source.

Sir Richard Burton and Captain Speke were the first, in modern times, to cross the coast range of mountains of Eastern Africa, and, reaching Lake Tanganyika, to identify what they described as a half-moon range of mountains some 6,000 feet in elevation, and at the northern extremity of the lake, with the "Mountains of the Moon." As the mountains in question constitute part of the anticlinal line or water-parting between the lake and the sources of the Nile and Lake Tanganyika and the basin of the Congo, the distinguished travellers were, to a certain extent, justified in establishing this identification.

The missionaries Rebman and Krapf, having respectively sighted the snow-clad mountains, Kilimanjaro and Kenia, in 1848 and 1849, Dr. Beke, the Abyssinian traveller, identified these mountains with the "Mountains of the Moon."-The Sources of the Nile p. 37. And paradoxical as it may for the moment appear, he was also, to a certain extent, justified in doing so, although Mr. W. D. Cooley, who published a work entitled Inner Africa Laid Open in 1882, persisted in maintaining that they were peaks of dolomite or white limestone.

The fact is that Ptolemy, a most accurate geographer, as a careful study of many of the positions of places assigned by him to sites in Western Asia enables the writer to testify,

described the "Mountains of the Moon" as extending from east to west along the parallel of 12° 30' south latitude, and over 10° of longitude; the one extremity being in 57°, and the other in 67°, east longitude, and

the two lakes-the Palus Orientalis Nili and the Palus Occidentalis Nili-described as receiving the waters from the snows of those mountains, are placed respectively in 57° and 65° east longitude. This would embrace the whole extent of country between the mountains at the head of Lakes Tanganyika and Albert Edward, and those of the eastern, or coast range, and therefore establish that both identifications were to a certain extent correct.

The Palus Occidentalis Nili was at first confounded by Burton, McQueen and Beke* with Lake Tanganyika; but this lake has since been discovered to flow into the Congo. The further discoveries by Captains Speke and Grant of the Victoria Nyanza, and by Sir Samuel Baker of the Albert Nyanza, tend to identify these two great sheets of water, the one with Ptolemy's Western Nile Lake, the other with the Eastern Nile Lake of the Alexandrian geographer.

This being admitted, it becomes also obvious that as Lake Albert Edward, the feeder of the Albert Nyanza,† is supplied from the snow-clad mountains at the head of the former lake, and the Victoria Nyanza derives its waters from the eastern range of mountains, both ranges were included in Ptolemy's "Mountains of the Moon."

The great snow-clad group of Ruwenzori being situated at the north-eastern extremity of the Albert Edward, it can thus only constitute an offshoot from the central anticlinal line or water-parting, and it is not, by itself, entitled to be designated as the "Mountain of the Moon."

Other snow-clad mountains have already been discovered south of this groupnotoriously, Mount Mfumbiro and Gambaraga, or Gordon Bennett Mountain, attaining an elevation of over 10,000 feet, and further research may tend to establish a geological, if not a physical, connection between the coast range and these more central groups, if they are not, as seems most

* The Nile Basin, by Richard F. Burton, F.R.G.S.;

Captain Speke's Discovery of the Sources of the Nile, by James McQueen, F.R.G.S.; On the Sources of the Nile, Dr. Beke

Mason Bey claims to have first discovered the inlet of Stanley's Semliki (Mississi or Alexandra Nile) into the Albert Nyanza. (Proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society, January, 1890.)

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