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LONDON, SATURDAY, JANUARY 4, 1896.
CONTENT S.-N° 210.
To detail the manner of life of the French officer in the enemy's country would occupy too much space; but it is important to notice the plain admissions made by General Fantin of the extraordinary extent to which marauding was carried by the French armies, and the manner in which it recoiled upon them. The author writes, in 1805, at Zusmorshausen :
NOTES:-Napoleon I.: La Grande Armée, 1-Portrait of
REPLIES:-Vatican Emerald, 9-Maypoles, 10-Smoking in Church, 11—'A Newspaper Editor's Reminiscences Homer: Omar-Armorial Seal-Rev. Dr. Glasse-W. Thompson-A Shower of Wheat-" Comfortable," 12-Pitt Club Weldon-Convent of Chaillot-The Sporting Dog of the Ancient Britons, 13-Human Sacrifice-"Battletwig," &c., 14-Canaletto-Leitchtown and Gartur Arms, 15 St. Sampson-Foxglove, 16-Parish Councils and Records "Woful"-"Luck Money," 17-Keats's Ode to a Nightingale'-The Roll of Battle Abbey-"The Beautiful Mrs. Rousby," 18-Hawtayne-Banishment of Earl of Somer
NOTES ON BOOKS:-Baring-Gould's English Minstrelsie,' Vol. III.-Cox's 'Introduction to Folk-lore'-Northall's 'Folk-Phrases'-Hooper's Church of St. Peter of Mancroft, Norwich.'
Notices to Correspondents.
"Nous sommes ici en Bavière, pays dont nous devons nos soldats se conduisent en ennemis......ll me semble que, par des exemples de sevérité, on pourrait arrêter ces desordres, qui ne peuvent avoir que des suites funestes," prophesying thoroughly the frightful murders and reprisals afterwards described in the Peninsular campaigns. In 1806 the general alludes to the systematic inroads of the army into the cellars of the Austrian peasants, and in 1807, after Eylau, when in cantonments at Guttstadt, upon the Alle, to the organized system of marauding in vogue, bringing terrible results to the miserable inhabitants and strife among the different branches of the French service. Later on, in Spain, nothing is more noticeable than the ominous allusions made in 1808 at Vittoria to the "goût du pillage que nos soldats ont contracté depuis longtemps, et qu'ils ont à peine réprimé en traversant leur patrie," the fear being lest it should revive, and exasperate "C un peuple fier et irascible." In Portugal, in 1809, the general mentions the series of assassinations by and reprisals upon the desperate inhabitants, winding up with the pithy remark, "Au diable la gloire quand elle mène à la potence." He sums up the position of the French in Spain with a little Gallic vanity, saying that while in other countries the women had been constantly on the side of the conquerors, in the hated Peninsula even nous sommes détestés même des filles publiques que nous enrichissons.”
NAPOLEON I.: LA GRANDE ARMÉE. I have been reading the "Journal du Général Fantin des Odoards : Étapes d'un Officier de la Grande Armée, 1800-1830," Librairie Plon, 1895. This is a most interesting book, written by a man of refinement and a keen observer of things both great and small. The general gives us a description of certain of the campaigns of Napoleon, as written The allusions of General Fantin to his chiefs are by a young officer who passed nearly the whole of not numerous. For the Emperor, of whose Guard that period of his career with his regiment. While he was for a time an officer, he has always the the romance of courts is but little touched upon, most devoted admiration; but of him he gives and the greater operations of war are not alluded to nothing that we do not already know. As in critically from the point of view of the commander, honour bound, he is convinced of the divine mission the work is the more interesting because it deals of Napoleon to subdue Europe; and, speaking of with the wars of the Empire from the observation of Austerlitz and the Russian losses, adds, 66 Üne a simple captain, and is taken in many respects leçon si vertement donnée paraît donc devoir être from a standpoint different from those of Marbot fructueuse, et dégoûter pour longtemps les hordes and Thiébault. There are many points which are du nord de se mêler des affaires du midi de critically dealt with ; and while much detail is in l'Europe." To the ambitious schemes of Soult he a single volume necessarily omitted, there are gives some space, and he aims a dart at the enmity several features which delineate clearly the cha- between that marshal and Ney, while he denounces racteristics of the better class of French officer of the artifice of Murat employed to gain possession that day. The book also throws a decisive light on of the all-important bridge over the Danube in the Emperor's methods of warfare, particularly as 1805. He also mentions, with the business-like the general treats everything in a plain business-regret of a soldier of fortune, the light hand like fashion, marked almost throughout by an absence of that sentiment which has given too high a colour to other similar memoirs.
exercised by Saint Cyr over the inhabitants of Dresden in 1813. He makes a droll allusion to the plebeian character of Marshal Lefebvre, who
appears to have been too confidential over the
“J'ai été surtout ravi de l'harmonie du chant. Il y a bien loin de semblables accords aux beuglements des chantres de nos cathédrales et au bruit rauque des serpents qui les accompagnent. Les Français, d'ailleurs si rarement dotés par la nature, sont, je pense, le peuple de l'Europe qui chante le plus mal."
W. H. QUARRELL.
SUPPOSED PORTRAIT OF FIRST EARL OF
of the Commons in 1575, and Lord Chief Baron of
From the connexion between the Finch and Bell families it seems to be very probable that the portrait in question may be that of the first Earl of Nottingham, and have come into the possession of Philip Bell when he purchased Wallington Hall from the second earl as above stated.
I should be glad of any information which may tend to corroborate my theory, and also to ascertain who may have been the artist by whom the portrait was painted. Are there in existence any well-authenticated portraits of the first Earl of Nottingham; and where? I have recently purchased an engraving purporting to be that of a portrait of him, dated A.D. 1681; but it appears, so far as one can judge from an engraving, to be that of a dark rather that of a fair haired man, and I cannot distinctly identify the features in the two portraits, although there seem to me to be some points of resemblance between them.
JOHN H. Josselyn.
[A portrait, attributed conjecturally to Luttrell, is p. 1665.]
I am owner of a fine oil painting, a life-size half-length portrait of a gentleman, or nobleman, dressed in a black doublet, apparently velvet, richly adorned on the shoulders and arms with heavy gold bullion lace, and wearing a deep collar and cuffs of fine lawn. He is an elderly man, large-framed and stout, and has fair hair, worn long under a black skull cap, a thin fair moustache and small chin tuft, a well-shaped and slightly aquiline nose, and a double chin. He stands by described in Smith's Catalogue of Engraved Portraits, a table on which lies a massive gold or gilt mace, on which the letters C. R. are plainly readable, and holds in his right hand a paper or parchment scroll, bearing an inscription, of which so much as is visible identifies it with the title of the statute 13 Car. II. c. 1, viz., "An Act for Safety and Preservation of His Majesty's Person and Government against Treasonable and Seditious Practices and Attempts"; which fixes the date of the portrait as not before 1661, and probably within a few years after that date.
I have arrived at a conclusion that the portrait may be that of Sir Heneage Finch, Lord Keeper in 1674, Lord Chancellor in 1675, and first Earl of Nottingham, for the following reasons:
The portrait came to me through my late mother, daughter of Scarlet Browne Bell, eldest son of Henry Bell, which Henry and his male lineal ancestors owned Wallington Hall, Norfolk.
Wallington Hall came into the Bell family in the seventeenth century, when Philip Bell (eighth son of Sir Robert Bell, of Beaupré Hall, Norfolk, and great-grandson of Sir Robert Bell, Speaker
THE YULE OF SAXON DAYS.
(Continued from 8th S. viii. 483.) Norse tradition points us to the far Asaland—most probably Asia-from which Odin came, and the underlying affinities of race and language attest its truth. How much of Scandinavian mythology, with its constant warfare between good and evil, is akin to Persian belief, and how much of Hebrew tradition underlies them both is a question too wide for so brief an essay. But a clearer light is thrown upon the worship of Thor when we remember him as the Beskytter, the protector, the shelter, and find that Houssa, Uzzi, or Husi is the divine protector among the tribes of the Euphrates and the descendants of Ishmael. From this name the Gothic huse, English house, is evidently derived, showing that the "sheltered hearth," that is the house, literally bore his name.
Philology takes us still further when it traces Thor or Thorah to the Hebrew for law or
order received from Sinai. Thus, as far back as we can go, among the earliest vestiges of the faith of our Scandinavian forefathers, we find these ideas in close association-Thor, the embodiment of protection, law and order, united with thunder and fire; the blazing pile of pine-logs; the assembling of the free; the rejoicing of the reunited family at the feast of the home, when children, followers, and bondmen were gathered around the father and king.
The Thorsthing or Housethings, now shortened into Hustings, only survives amongst us as the name of the polling place. But in Yarmouth, the oldest seaport on the Norfolk coast, where the Danish element prevailed long after the Conquest, we find the ancient chartered court of the borough was formerly called the Court of Husting, now the court of record; all the crimes committed within the borough being tried there.
Amongst the Teutonic nations he who gave the largest entertainments was held in the most esteem. These feasts commonly lasted several days. No guest thought of departing until the empty bowls and the increasing heap of bones showed that the abundant provisions were consumed. Athenaus describes a Gaulish feast which lasted a year without interruption. Not only every individual of the tribe, but every stranger also who chanced to pass through the country, was made welcome. It was a belief sanctioned by long established custom that at the festive board men spoke out their real thoughts with greater boldness and formed their most daring plans.
In speaking of the Germanic race, Tacitus says: "When they wanted to reconcile enemies, to form alliances, to appoint chiefs, or to treat of war and peace, it was during the repast they took counsel-a time in which the mind is most open to the impressions of simple truth, or most easily animated to great attempts. These artless people during the conviviality of the feast spoke without disguise, and next day weighed the counsels of the former evening. They deliberated at a time when they were not disposed to deceive, and took their resolution at a time when they were least liable to be deceived."
Such were the traditionary customs which regulated the Saxon Yuletide. If in this spirit the father and king of the nation deliberated with his eldermen and warriors, so likewise the father consulted with his sons. We must now turn to Kentish customs for additional light upon the early Yule, for the Saxon settlement upon the Kentish shore had grown into a kingdom before the descendants of Odin cast the lance against their idols and listened to the gentler teachings of Christianity. About one hundred and seventy years after the daring escape of the Northmen from the legions of Probus, the cowardly Vortigern requested Saxon aid. In answer to his invitation 1,500 men landed on the coast of Kent. Three ships brought them over, and they were therefore
called "the men of the three ships," "the short sword men," or Saxons. Their leaders, the brothers Hengist and Horsa, are spoken of as the greatgrandsons of Odin, and, as their old songs express it, "They followed gaily the track of the swans." The lapse of time between the arrival of the three ships and the escape of the exiles suggests the identity of their ancestral Odin with the leader of that gallant band. The Northmen held the transmigration, or rather the reincarnation of souls. They believed by giving a child the name of a distinguished man, especially of his own forefathers, the soul of his name-father was transfused into the child. Thus we find St. Olaf was named after his most famous ancestor King Olaf GurstadAlf, and in his day the common people believed that the old king was really born again in St. Olaf. Among a race cherishing ideas like these the heroic mariner could not fail to be regarded as the incarnation of their god Odin, the heaven father and victor king.
We must now recall the familiar story of Hengist's first winter in England. The feast he gave to Vortigern, when Rowena presented the wassailbowl to the British king, was undoubtedly the first Yuletide ever kept within our white-faced isle. Many have ascribed the origin of the Saxon wassail to the daughter of Hengist. Others identify it with the grace-cup of the Greeks and Romans; but there seems more reason to suppose the presentation of the wassail-bowl was as closely associated with the Saxon Yule as the ivy with which the bowl was wreathed.
Brand tells us of an ancient custom among the Kentish villages, for which he can offer no explanation, although it was kept up as late as 1779, referring to the holly and ivy with which they decorated their houses at Christmas. In this traditional observance the mistletoe has no partanother indication of its purely Saxon origin. We must remember the holly is the only thing remaining alive and green throughout the dark winter of the frozen north, where they reverence it as the Grantra. Therefore we may conclude it was a symbol dear" to Hengist and Rowena before their winter in Britain. Brand adds, the holly and ivy which decorated the Kentish farmhouses at Christmas were never taken down until Shrovetide. Was this the limit of the ancient Yule? The village maidens then collected the withering ivy and bound it into a bundle, which they denominated the ivy-girl. Meanwhile the village boys had got possession of the holly, which they had twisted into the rude effigy of a man. By nightfall their respective bonfires were lighted; but the holly-boy was nowhere to be found. Girlish craft had stolen him away, and all the stealthy cunning of the lads was now exerted to get possession of the ivy-girl by way of reprisal. Of course they succeeded, and by the time the