Sidor som bilder
PDF

Thus Englishd by Abraham Fleming.

Balme, virgine wax, and holy water
An Agnus Dei make :
A gift than which none can be greater,
#. thee for to take.
From fountain cleare, the same hath issue,
In secret sanctified;
'Gainst lightning it hath soveraigne virtue,
And thunder-cracks beside 1
Each hainous sin, it weares and wasteth,
Even as Christ's precious blood.
And women while their travaile lasteth
It saves—it is so good.
It doth bestow great gifts and graces
On such as well deserve,
And borne about in noisome places
From peril doth preserve.
The force of fire, whose heat destroyeth,
It breakes and bringeth downe;
And he or she that this enjoyeth,
No water shall them drowne. *

The facility with which witches were wont to take the air on a broomstick is well known, but we question whether any of our readers are acquainted with the method adopted to infuse a power so volatile into an instrument so humble and degraded. “The devil (quoth Scot,t) teacheth them (witches) to make ointment of the bowels and limbs of children, whereby they ride in the aire, and accomplish all their desires; so as, if there be any children unbaptized, or not guarded with the signe of the crosse, or with orizons, then the witches may and do catch them from their mother's sides in the night, or out of their cradles, or otherwise kill them with their ceremonies; and, after buriall, they steal them out of their graves, and seethe them in a cauldron, untill their fleshe be made potable. Of the thickest thereof they make ointment, whereby they ride in the aire; but the thinner portion they put into flaggons, whereof whosoever drinketh, observing certaine ceremonies, immediately becometh a master, or rather a mistresse in that practise and faculty.' .

* Scot's Discovery, book xii. c. 9.

: Francis Bartholinus has asserted a similar fact.

Another marvellous property ascribed to witches, was the raising and assuaging of tempests; and the power of making the moon and the stars and all the host of heaven descend from their exalted spheres. In proof of the former, we have the following tale from that abominable collection of popish superstition and eredulity, the Malleus Maleficarum. Certain commissioners having apprehended some witches, wished one of them to show them an experiment of her skill ; promising to procure her pardon, provided she would discontinue her evil practices. She acceded to the proposal, and going out into the fields, commenced her operations in the presence of the commissioners, and several other persons. She first made a pit in the earth with her own hands, and poured some water into it, which she constantly stirred with one of her fingers, making at the same time, certain cabalistical characters on the ground near her. Presently there arose a vapour, which, ascending upward like smoke, hovered over the spot where the sorceress stood, becoming every moment more dense and gloomy. Out of the cloud thus manufactured there came such vivid lightning, accompanied with such tremendous claps of thunder, that the spectators began to think their latter end was rapidly approaching. After this fearful exhibition had continued for some time, the woman asked the commissioners in what spot the cloud should discharge a great number of stones? They pointed to a place at some distance, and lo! the cloud “ of a sudden began to move itself with a great and furious blustering of winds; and in a short space, coming over the place o it discharged many stones, like a violent shower, directly within the compass thereof.” The influence of witches over the moon

+ Ibid. book iii. c. 1. “Strigibus per unguentum prae

dictum diabolicum possibile est accidisse, aut accidere somnium vehementissimum, et somniare se ad loca deportatas longinqua, in catos converti, vel quocunque alia facere, etiam vel pati, quae postmodum se putant in veritate fecisse, vel passas esse.” Fra. Barthol. de Spina, Quaest. de Strigibus, tom. 4. Weirus (de Praestigiis Darmonum) exposes the folly of this opinion, and proves it to be only a diabolical illusion. Oldham likewise

Slicers at it: As men in sleep, though motionless they lie,

Fledged by a dream, believe they mount and fly;

So witches some enchanted wand bestride,

And think they through the airy regions ride.
John Oldham's Works and Remains, p. 254. Ed. 1698.

and stars is frequently alluded to in
the writings of the heathen poets, more
especially in those of Horace, Virgil,
Tibullus, Propertius, and Ovid. They
will readily recur to the classical
reader, and our limits will not allow
us to transcribe them.
We have now enumerated and de-
scribed the more important ceremo-
nies and attributes appertaining to
witchcraft. Reginald Scot, indeed,
to whom we have been so largely in-
debted, mentions a curious faculty
which we have overlooked, and
which, could it but be rendered prac-
ticable, might prove an excellent
substitute for the diving bell. It is
briefly that of “ sailing in an egg-
shell, acockle, or muscle-shell, through
and under the tempestuous seas.”

But who, in these degenerate days, would trust themselves to so frail and precarious a vehicle P Times, indeed, are strangely altered, and the witch and the wizard, however powerful their sway might once have been, exist only in the fable of the poet, or in the disgusting detail of a contemporary chronicler. But we must for the present bring our lucubrations to a close. In our next paper, we shall et:ter into a more minute examination of the principles which induced our ancestors to credit and encourage so baneful a doctrine; showing on the one hand the vile imposture, and on the other, the rancorous malignity which fostered and supported so wicked and abominable a delusion.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

Tametsi nihil acque studuerim, Rex Sereniss. quam vt ingratitudinis non modo notam, verumetiam suspicionem vel minimam effugerem, metuo tamen ne in illam incidisse videri possim, que tot a tua Majestate beneficijs semper affecta nullas tanto temporis interuallo literas dederim, equibus animi saltem grati signa cognosceres. Cuius rei cause cum sint iustae ac necessariae, spero, simulque confido, Maiestatem tuam me ab omni ingratitudinis crimine facilè liberaturam esse. Valetudo emim capitis et oculorum aduersa accessit, quae ita me grauiter ab aduentu in hanc domum molestauit, vit dum saepe ad tuam Maiestatem scribere comarer, in hunc vsque diem semper a proposito institutoque reuocata sim. Que valetudo cum Dei Opt. Maximi ope et auxilio nunc semet aliquantum remiserit, existimaui scribendi officium minimè diutius a me differendum esse, quo tua Maiestas intelligeret quiduis potius quam animum erga se gratum beneficiorumque memorem hactenus mihi defuisse. Nam etsi non ignorarem tantam tuorum erga me beneficiorum esse magnitudinem, vtillorum partem vel minimam referenda gratia consequendi spes prorsus omnis adimeretur, in hoc tamen omnes mihi neruos contendendos esse putaui, vt instam meritamque gratiam voluntate memorique mente persoluerem. In quo quidem cum nihil sit a me hactenus wnquam praetermissum, spero tuam Maiestatem hoc meum scribendi graticque agendae huc usque intermissum officium non modo in aequam partem accepturam, verumetiam debitam sibi gratiam animo semper et voluntate a me fuisse habitam, existimaturam esse. Dominus Jesus qui omnia conseruat et tuetur, tuam Excellentiam isto regno, magnis virtutibus, multisque annis, perpetuo augeat. Enfildiae,

Maiestatis tuæ humilima serua et soror,
Eliza BETA.

Before we quit the Virgin Queen, it may be allowable to observe, that some lines communicated by the late Mr. Lysons to Lord Orford, and printed in the first volume of his works, page 552, as the production of Edward Vere, Earl of Oxford, are

ascribed to Elizabeth, in a ve
and ancient MS. in the o:
We subjoin them, as the Oxford
manuscript affords several readings
very preferable to the copy used by
Lord Orford, and, after him, by Mr.
Ellis in his Specimens.

Verses made by the Queine when she was supposed to be in loue with Mountsyre.

When I was fayre and younge, and fauour graced me,
Of many was I soughte theire mystres for to be ;
But I did scorne them all, and awnswer'd them therfore,
Goe, goe, goe, seek som other-wher,
Importune me no more,

How manye weepinge eyes I made to pyne with woe,
How manye syghinge hartes, I haue no skyll to showe;
Yet I the prowder grewe, and awnswerde them therfore,
Goe, goe, goe, seeke som other-where,
Importune me no more.

Than spake fayre Venus' son, that proude victorious boye,

And sayde; Fyne Dame, since

at you be so coye,

I will so plucke your plumes that you shall say no more,
Goe, goe, goe, seeke some other-where,
Importune me no more.

When he had spake these wordes, suche change grew in my brest,
That neythernyghte nor day since that, I coulde tak any rest;
Then, loe, I did repente, that I had sayde before,
Goe, goe, goe, seeke some other-where,
Importune me no more.

[blocks in formation]

The brande, the blowe, the bands wherewith imperious Loue
Me moved, hath enflam’d, ensnar'd, most welcome prove.
To have the wounds heal’d up, the fire extinguisht quite,
The fetters beaten off, I would not, if I might.
Straunge maladie! that wounded, burn’t, and bounde, remaines;
That takes delight to bleede, to burne, to be in chainess

In 1722, J. Roberts, at the Oxford Arms in Warwick-lane, published an 8vo. tract that has escaped Lord Orford and Mr. Park. The Pious Politician; or Remains of the Royal Martyr, being Apophthegms and Select Marims, Divine, Moral, and Political. Left to posterity by that incomparable Prince,

our late sovereign King Charles I. Faithfully collected. This is a scarce shilling's-worth of 76 pages, containing very little that can be deemed novel; for the maxims and opinions are mostly to be found in the Eurov BagiXukm, or Royston's huge folio of Charles's works. At the end is an

[blocks in formation]

The friend of Lord Russel, whose cause he vindicated in a spirited tract entitled Observations upon his Case, folio, 1689. After being a principal means of introducing King William the Third, he was dismissed by that sovereign, from his situation as Chancellor of the Exchequer, in order to please a particular political party, and died before he was forty-two. To make some amends for his abrupt dismissal, he had an earldom given him, with a pension of two thousand a year; but this was only paid for the first six months, and the remainder was included in the list of King William's debts, drawn up by order of Queen Anne.

We have before taken notice of Aubrey's superstition and credulity (page 220) but a very good instance occurs in his mention of this Lord's father. Dr. Richard Napier, a great figure-caster in his day, “ did conwerse with the angel Raphael, who gave him the responses.” One of Raphael's answers to a question proposed was, that “Mr. Booth, of Cheshire, should have a son, that should inherit, three years since.” The question and answer were given in 1619, and, as good luck would have it, in 1622, George Booth (the second, though inheriting, son of his i. was born, and became afterwards Lor Delamer. “It is impossible,” continues Aubrey, “that the prediction of Sir George Booth's birth, could be found any other way, but by angelical revelation.”

Lord Delamer was accused of high treason by King James, and tried in Westminster Hall by Judge Jefferys. In his Advice to his Children, page 15, we have the following passage illustrative of his own behaviour on this occasion: “If you are examined as a criminal, confess 'nothing; only argue against the insufficiency of what is objected against you. For, first, it is an argument of your cou

rage and resolution: secondly, by confessing any thing, you help them to evidence against yourself and others; for you furnish them with time and place, and then it is an easie matter for a knight of the post to give such an evidence against you as is not easily disproved: thirdly, it's very seldom that you will meet with better usage, though you confess never so much, unless you will turn accuser of others, and give evidence against them ; which is so base a thing, that I would advise you to undergoe any extremity rather than do that; for, as your own party will for ever abhor you and your memory, so the other side will despise and slight you as soon as you have done their business, and all that you can do for the future, will never wipe off such a blot.” In the copy of his Lordship's works now before us, are several MS. notes written by some former possessor, who well knew the Earl's family affairs. Upon the passage just quoted, the anonymous annotator remarks: “ This conduct he strictly observed, at his own tryal before Judge Jefferys, and was acquitted.” The same writer gives a singular anecdote of his son and successor's match, which proved an unhappy one. The account does not reflect any credit on his Lordship's conduct. “ George, late Earl of Warrington, married the daughter of a merchant in London, who, on his death-bed, requested his two daughters not to marry noblemen; but fearing they might neglect his advice, left each of them 10,000l. in trust, exclusive of 40,000l. absolute. Some few years after my lady had consigned up her whole fortune to pay my Lord's debts, they quarrelled, and lived in the same house as absolute strangers to each other at bed and board. She died in 1739, leaving one daughter, married to the Earl of Stamford.”

Lord Orford notices a speech which he supposes was addressed to his

alluded to, in its original form, a single folio leaf, and it proves the county, upon the arrival of the Prince supposition to be correct, although of Orange; we have seen a copy of (if the . it was chiefly directed what we suppose to be the speech to his Lordship's own tenants.

“Can you (he says) ever hope for a better occasion to root out popery and slavery, than by joining with the P. of O. whose proposals contain and speak the desires of every man that loves his religion and liberty P And in saying this, I will invite you to nothing but what I will do myself, neither will I put you upon any danger, where I will not take share in it. I propose this to you, not as you are my tenants, but as my friends, and as you are Englishmen. No man can love fighting for its own sake, nor find any pleasure in danger: And you may imagine I would be very glad to spend the rest of my days in peace, having had so great a share in troubles: but I see all lyes at stake, I am to choose whether I will be a slave and a papist, or a protestant and a freeman, and therefore the case being thus, I shall think myself false to my country, if I sit still at this time. I am of opinion, that when the nation is delivered, it must be by force or by miracle: it would be too great a presumption to expect the latter, and therefore our deliverance must be by force; and I hope this is the time for it. I promise this, on m word and honour, to every tenant that goes along with me. That if he fall, I will make his lease as good to his family, as it was when he went from home. The thing then which I desire, and your country does expect from you, is this. That every man that hath a tolerable horse, or can procure one, will meet me on Boden downs to-morrow, where I randezvouze: but if any of you is rendred unable by reason of age, or any other just excuse, then that he would mount a fitter person, and put five pounds in his pocket. Those that have not, nor cannot procure, horse, let them stay at home and assist with their purses, and send it to me with a particular of every man's contribution. I impose on no man, but to such I promise, and to all that go along with me, that if we prevail, I will be as industrious to have him recompensed for his charge and hazard, as I will be to seek it for myself—I have no more to say, but that I am willing to lose my life in the cause, if God see it good, for I was never unwilling to dye for my religion and coun

[ocr errors]

- We should apologize for so copious an extract, but the rarity of the source from which it is delived, and the manly, honest, and genuine spirit of Lord Delamer's address upon so momentous an occasion, must plead

our excuse. In our next Number, the reader shall be introduced to some noble authors, who have not as yet been graced by a niche in Lord Orford's hiterary temple.

REPORT OF MUSIC.

IN our last report but one we mentioned the rising partiality manifested by his Majesty towards English music, and the growing patronage he had of late extended to native professors. We may now consider both as much more decided. The principal singers of the Chapel Royal are every week summoned to Brighton, and on the Saturday evening a concert chiefly made up of English glees, and on the Sunday a selection of sacred music, are performed in the splendid music-room. The latter is taken almost wholly from the works of Haudel; and a

few evenings ago the King, in speaking to one of the vocalists, concerning his own musical preferences, said, that “although he could not give any one credit for fine taste, who was exclusively devoted to any one school, yet he thought the English style, as exemplified in Handel, was the most sound; and in this respect he was daily approaching nearer to the sentiments of his late father.” His Majesty is universally acknowledged to be an excellent judge of music in all styles. He has a good bass voice, and sings occasionally. He formerly played on the violom

« FöregåendeFortsätt »