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times used for purposes of concealment, and very effectively done by leaving out or adding letters. Thus Messalinus would hardly be guessed to have come from Salmasius, or Cesare Leone Fruscadino from Francesco Maria de Luco Sereni. But Gustavus for Augustus, Lucianus and Alcuinus for Calvinus, Volcmarus Kirstenius for Macer Jurisconsultus, are good enough.
Some authors called their several chapters by the letters of their names; but Fordun placed at the head of his Scottish Chronicle three verses as follows, in which the first letters of each word together make up Johannes de Fordun:—
Incipies opus hoe Adonai: nomine nostri
Jean de Vauzelles announced his work by the motto Crainte de Dieu vaut zele; and Pierre de Mesmes by the Italian Per me stesso son sasso, which literally in French is de moi-meme je svis Pierre, which he intended should be transposed as follows—Moi, je tuts Pierre de Mesmes.
The substitution of initial letters instead of names and titles was common enough, and was borrowed from the practice of the Jews, but stripped of all point by the absence of the vowel, which is assumed or understood between the consonants of the Hebrew. Thus J. C. A. A. P. E. I. stood for Jean Ousson, Avocatau Parlement et Imprimeur, and F. J. F. C. R. S. T. P. A. P. C. for Frater Johannes Fronto, Canonicus Regularis, Sacrae Theologiae Professor, Academiae Parisiensis Cancellarius.
The lengthening of names in the following manner frequently took place: Guillet became Guillet de la Guilletiere, Thaumas became Thaumas de la Thaumassiere,* &c.
In closing this article, we observe that we can by no
• We may sometimes catch the incidents of modern novels in such apparently dry disquisitions as those of Baillet.
means guarantee the correct spelling of any name which is not French in the preceding extracts, because they are taken from French authors, and writers of that nation, till very lately, contended which should spell foreign names worse. If all difficult researches are interesting, then what a tempting subject it would be to endeavour to find ten English words consecutively spelt right in any French author from 1750 to 1815!
We may congratulate our readers on being allowed to call books and men by their vernacular names. If there be any one who is insensible to the benefit thereby accruing to him, we should very much like to send him on a hunt among the book-stalls for the following scarce work (as he would find it): 'Viri celeberrimi, &c. Velocii Decani Patriciensis, vita, auctore Gualtero Novelists. Augusta;, Miocccxx. Excudebat Calvisius Victor.'
III. THE DUCKING-STOOL.
Boswell relates that Dr. Johnson, in a conversation with Mrs. Knowles, the celebrated Quaker lady, said, "Madam, we have different modes of restraining eviL— stocks for the men, a Docking-stool for Women, and a pound for beasts."
In early times it was called the cucking-stool. Brand describes it as an engine invented for the punishment of scolds and unquiet women, by ducking them in the water, after having placed them in a stool or chair fixed at the end of a long pole, by which they were immerged in some muddy or stinking pond.
Blount thought this last name a corruption of duckingstool; and another antiquary guessed that choking-stool was its etymology.—(See Brand's 'Popular Antiquities,' vol. ii. p. 442.) But in a manuscript of the ' Promptorium Parvulorum' '* esyn, or Cukktn, is interpreted by stercoris; and the etymology is corroborated by a no less ancient record than the Domesday Survey, where, at Chester, any man or woman who brewed bad ale, according to the custom of the city, had their choice either to pay a fine of four shillings or be placed in the cathedra stercoris.
Blount says this chair was in use in the Saxon times. In the Saxon dictionaries its name is Scealkinj rtrol.
In Queen Elizabeth's time the ducking-stool was a universal punishment for scolds.
Cole, the antiquary, in his ' Extracts from Proceedings in the Vice-chancellor's Court at Cambridge' in that reign, quotes the following entries:
"Jane Johnson, adjudged to the ducking-stoole for scoulding, and commuted her penance.
"Katherine Sanders, accused by the churchwardens of St. Andrews's for a common scold and slanderer of her neighbours, adjudged to the ducking-stool."
Every great town, at that time, appears to have had at least one of these penitential chairs in ordinary use, provided at the expense of the corporation.
Lysons, in his ' Environs of London,' vol. i. p. 233, gives a bill of expenses for the making of one in 1572, from the churchwardens' and chamberlain's accompts at Kingston-upon-Thames. It is there called the cucking-stool.
1572. The making of the cucking-stool . 0 8 0 Iron-work for the same . .030 Timber for the same . . .076 Three brasses for the same, and three wheels . . . . 0 4 10
£ 1 3 4
In Harwood's 'History of Lichfield,' p. 383, in 1578, we find a charge "for making a cuck-stool, with appurtenances, 8s." One was erected at Shrewsbury, by order of the corporation, in 1669.—See the history of that town, quarto, 1779, p. 172.
Misson, in his ' Travels in England,' makes particular mention of the cucking-stool. He says, "This way of punishing scolding women is pleasant enough. They fasten an arm-chair to the end of two beams twelve or fifteen foot long, and parallel to each other; so that these two pieces of wood with their two ends embrace the chair, which hangs between them upon a sort of axle; by which means it plays freely, and always remains in the natural horizontal position in which a chair should be that a person may sit conveniently in it, whether you raise it or let it down. They set up a post upon the bank of a pond or river, and over this post they lay, almost in equilibrio, the two pieces of wood, at one end of which the chair hangs just over the water; they place the woman in this chair, and so plunge her into the water as often as the sentence directs, in order to cool her immoderate heat.
Cole, the antiquary already mentioned, in one of his manuscript volumes in the British Museum, says, " In my time, when I was a boy and lived with my grandmother in the great corner-house at the bridge-loot, next to Magdalen College, Cambridge, and rebuilt since by my uncle, Joseph Cock, I remember to have seen a woman ducked for scolding. The chair hung by a pulley fastened to a beam about the middle of the bridge, in which the woman was confined, and let down under the water three times, and then taken out. The bridge was then of timber, before the present stone bridge of one arch was builded. The ducking-stool was constantly hanging in its place, and on the back panel of it was engraved devils laying hold of scolds, &c. Some time after, a new chair was erected in the place of the old one, having the same devices carved on it, and well painted and ornamented. When the new bridge of stone was erected in 1754, this was taken away; and I lately saw the carved and gilt back of it nailed up by the shop of one Mr. Jackson, a whitesmith in the Butcher-row, behind the town-hall, who offered it to me, but I did not know what to do with it. In October, 1776, I saw in the old town-hall a third ducking-stool, of plain oak, with an iron bar before it to confine the person in the seat; but I made no inquiries about it. I mention these things, as the practice seems now to be totally laid aside." Mr. Cole died in the year 1782.
The custom of the ducking-stool was not confined to England. In the 'Regiam Majestatem' of Sir John Skene it occurs as an ancient punishment in Scotland. Under ' Burrow Lawes,' chap. 69, noticing Browsters, that is, "Wemen quha brewen aill to be sauld," it is said, "gif she makes gude Ail, that is sufficient; bot gif she makes evill Ail, contrair to the use and consuetude of the Burgh, and is convict thereof, she sail pay ane unlaw of audit shillinges, or sail suffer the justice of the Burgh, that is, she sail be put upon the Cock-stule, and the Aill sail be distributed to the pure folke."
Gay mentions the ducking-stool, in his Pastorals, as a
"I '11 speed me to the pond, where the high stool
The Shepherd's Week. Pastoral iii.
IV. MONUMENT OF THE LAST OF THE
It is not generally known that about two centuries* ago, in an obscure corner of the kingdom, lived and died Theodore Palcologus, the immediate descendant of the Constantine family, and in all probability the lineal heir to the empire of Greece.
In the parish church of Landulph, in the eastern extremity of Cornwall, is a small brass tablet fixed against the wall, with the following inscription :—
"Here lyeth the body of Theodore Paleologus, of Pesaro in Italye, descended from the Imperial lyne of the last Christian Emperors of Greece, being the sonne of