« السابقةمتابعة »
his subjects, was most culpable; or whether his crimes in these respects were not even exceeded by the baseness which appeared in his transactions with the King of France, the pope, and the barons. His dominions, when they devolved to him by the death of his brother, were more extensive than have ever since his time been ruled by any English monarch. But he first lost, by his misconduct, the flourishing provinces in France; the antient patrimony of his family. He subjected his kingdom to a shameful vassalage under the see of Rome; he saw the prérogatives of his crown diminished by law, and still more reduced by faction; and he died at last when in danger of being totally expelled by a foreign power, and of either ending his life miserably in a prison, or seeking shelter as a fugitive from the pursuit of his enemies.-Hume.
Curse not his memory, Murderer as he was,
6.-EASTER-DAY, or EASTER SUNDAY. Easter is styled, by the fathers, the highest of all festivals, the feast of feasts, the queen of festivals, and Dominica Gaudii, the joyous Sunday. Masters granted freedom to their slaves at this season, and valuable presents were made to the poor.
For the august ceremonies performed at Rome on this day, Whitsuntide, and other great festivals, we refer to T. T. for 1815, p. 165. The magnificent ceremony of the Resurrection, at Moscow, is also described at p. 90 of the same volume. A variety of old English customs observed at Easter have been mentioned in our former volumes.
7, 8.-EASTER MONDAY AND TUESDAY. Every day in this week was formerly observed as a religious festival, sermons being preached, and the sacrament administered. In many places, servants were permitted to rest from their usual employments, that they might constantly attend public worship. During fifteen days, of which the paschal solemnity consisted, the courts of justice were shut, and all public games, shows, and amusements, were prohibited it is unnecessary to observe, that this practice has long ceased, and that the Easter week is usually devoted to relaxation and amusement; this is particularly the case at Moscow, and in Catholic countries. See T. T. for 1815, p. 93.
We have, in our former volumes, already noticed the strange custom of Heaving practised on this day in the north of England. The following extract, from a letter sent to Mr. BRAND, the antiquarian, by a respectable gentleman, in the year 1799, thus speaks of the custom. I was sitting alone last Easter Tuesday, at breakfast, at the Talbot, in Shrewsbury, when I was surprised by the entrance of all the female servants of the house, handing in an arm-chair, lined with white, and decorated with ribbons and favours of different colours. On asking what they wanted, their answer was, 66 they came to heave me it was the custom of the place on that morning, and they hoped I would take a seat in their chair." It was impossible not to comply with a request very modestly made, and to a set of nymphs in their best apparel, and several of them under twenty. I wished to see all the ceremony, and seated myself accordingly. The fair group then lifted me from the ground, turned the chair about, and I had the felicity of a salute from each. I told them, I supposed there was a fine due upon the occasion, and was answered in the affirmative, and, having satisfied the damsels, they withdrew to heave others. At this time I had never heard of such a custom; but, on inquiry, I
found that on Easter Monday, between nine and twelve, the men heave the women in the same manner as on the Tuesday, between the same hours, the women heave the men,'-See Popular Antiquities, 4to. edit.
*9. 1483.-EDWARD V BEGAN TO REIGN. *12. 1736.-FIRST METHODIST CHAPEL ERECTED.
It was a custom among the primitive Christians, on the first Sunday after Easter-day, to repeat some part of the solemnity of that grand festival'; whence this Sunday took the name of Low Sunday, being celebrated as a feast, though in a lower degree.
*16. 1788.-BUFFON DIED.
At Montbard, in France, in the route from Paris to Dijon, the house in which Buffon spent the greatest part of his life may yet be inspected by the curious traveller. It is in the high street, and the court is behind. You ascend a staircase to go into the garden, raised on the ruins of the antient mansion, of which the walls make the terraces. On the top there still remains a lofty octagon tower, where Buffon made his observations on the reverberation of the air. This singular and picturesque garden is well worthy of notice. In quitting this interesting spot, the column erected to Buffon by his son is seen, on which there was once the following inscription:
Excelsa turri humiles columna-Parenti suo filius Buffon.' That revolution which caused these words to be effaced, also condemned to the scaffold the writer of them, who died, pronouncing only, in a calm and dignified tone, Citizens, my name isBUFFON !'
A native of England, Alphege was first Abbot of Bath, then Bishop of Winchester, in the year 984; and, twelve years afterwards, Archbishop of Canterbury. He was stoned to death at Greenwich,
*21. 1219.-SAINT DOMINIC
Found at Paris thirty of his religious followers in the chapel of St. James, and, in consequence of the name of the chapel and the street where it stood, he called them Jacobins. This was the origin of an Order which exercised great power over kings. St. Louis had so much love for this community, that he wished to be made a Jacobin. He proposed his design to the queen, and conjured her not to oppose it. That princess immediately sent for her children and the Earl of Anjou, brother of the King; she demanded of the first whether they would prefer being the sons of a priest rather than the sons of a king? And, without waiting for their answer, she exclaimed, The Jacobins have worked on the mind of your father, and persuaded him to abdicate the throne in order to become a priest and a preacher.' At these words, the Earl of Anjou expressed his determination to oppose the king and the priests; and the eldest son of the monarch swore by St. Denis, that, if ever he came to the throne, he would drive every mendicant idle priest out of his kingdom. The fanatic passion of St. Louis for crusades brought him to his death, near the ruins of Carthage, fighting against Mussulmen in a country where Dido had established the gods of the Syrians. This king extended that religious enthusiasm which depopulated Europe during two centuries.
*22. 1509.-HENRY VIII BEGAN TO REIGN. The absolute and uncontrolled authority which he maintained at home, and the regard he obtained among foreign nations, are circumstances which entitle him to the appellation of a great prince; while his tyranny and cruelty seem to exclude him from the character of a good one.
He possessed, indeed, great vigour of mind, which qualified him for exercising dominion over mencourage, intrepidity, vigilance, inflexibility; and though these qualities lay not always under the guidance of a
regular and solid judgment, they were accompanied with good parts, and an extensive capacity; and every one dreaded a contest, with a man who was never known to yield, or to forgive; and who, in every controversy, was determined to ruin himself, or his antagonist.
A catalogue of his vices would comprehend many of the worst qualities incident to human nature. Violence, cruelty, profusion, rapacity, injustice, obstinacy, arrogance, bigotry, presumption, caprice; but neither was he subject to all these vices in the most extreme degree, nor was he at intervals altogether devoid of virtues. He was sincere, open, gallant, liberal, and capable at least of a temporary friendship and attachment.
It may seem a little extraordinary, that notwithstanding his cruelty, his extortion, his violence, his arbitrary administration, this prince not only acquired the regard of his subjects, but never was the object of their hatred; he seems even, in some degree, to have possessed their love and affection. His exterior qualities were advantageous, and fit to captivate the multitude; his magnificence and personal bravery rendered him illustrious to vulgar eyes; and it may be said with truth, that the English in that age were so thoroughly subdued, that, like eastern slaves, they were inclined to admire even those acts of violence and tyranny which were exercised over themselves, and at their own expense.-Hume.
*22. 1663.-ROYAL SOCIETY INCORPorated. 23. SAINT GEORGE.
This illustrious saint, termed, by the Greeks, the great martyr,' was born in Cappadocia, of noble Christian parents, and was a tribune or colonel in the army under Dioclesian. He was beheaded in the year 290. Under the name and ensign of St. George, Edward III, in 1330, instituted the most noble order of knighthood in Europe. See T. T. for 1815, p. 124.