See also Walter Pelham's Illust. Journ., Oct. 18, 1897, pp. 1 and 3; Moonshine, Jan. 7, 1888, p. 1; Chambers's Journ., May 4, 1895, pp. 283-284, and Variety Theatre, Aug. 4, 1905, p. 28. Any other references would be valued.


J. ARDAGH. General information about Blondin should be easy to come by, but in case MR. DICKINSON may be writing in detail about him I write to say that on at least two occasions Blondin performed on the tightrope as far north as Aberdeen. The first occasion was in September, 1861, in "Sir Alexander Bannerman's Garden '-a pleasure-ground on the town-house property in Union Street, Aberdeen, of Sir Alexander Bannerman of Crimonmogate (father of the present Countess of Southesk). Newspaper accounts of the affair indicate that it was a highly popular exhibition. The next occasion of Blondin's visit to Aberdeen was in June, 1870, when he walked on a tightrope in the grounds of Bridewell-the west prison of Aberdeen, opened, 1809, and named from Bridewell, of London. It was discontinued as a prison in 1868, and for some years thereafter the grounds were used as a pleasure - garden." Many thousands turned out to see Blondin on that occasion. I remember being taken, as a very small boy, to see the great spectacle-as we thought and had a fearful shock at one point when Blondin, blindfolded, made a feint of missing his foothold, and came down slightly on one leg. He was a great hero then.



Public Library, Aberdeen. Jean-François Gravelet, whose professional name was Blondin, because of the colour of his hair, was first heard of as a gymnast, in America in 1858. His fame began with a rope-walk over the Falls of A repetition of this dar Niagara in 1859. ing feat, in the presence of King Edward (when Prince of Wales), in 1860, led to Blondin coming to England, a decision he had no cause to regret. His earliest show was at the Crystal Palace on June 1, 1861. He was also something of an actor, appearing as a monkey in a ballet entitled The Child of the Wreck.’ The poetry-jobber couldn't miss the hero of Niagara, and thus delivers himself :

Of all the sights in England now,
And I've looked everywhere;
There is not one of any sort

With Blondin can compare.

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St. Anne's-on-the-Sea.

[MR. T. W. TYRRELL mentions an illustrated

interview to be found in Cassell's Famili
Magazine, December, 1896; and MR. ARCHIBALI
the Illustrated London News, vol. ex. (18.
SPARKE says that a portrait will be found
p. 227.]



-The astronomers of Julius Caesar's tim made their calculations on the supposition that the Solar year (with which it wa Cæsar's desire that the civil year shou' accord) consisted of 365 days and 6 hou and omitted to take into account the dif ence between that amount of time and tr true time of the sun's course, which differ ence, in each year, amounted to 11 min utes and 12 seconds; consequently, the year 1582 there was difference of abo 10 days, made up by the accumulation the odd minutes.

In the Bull of Pope Gregory XIII., 24 Feb 1582, the New Calendar was definitely in troduced; the correction being effected i the following manner. Ten days were omit ted by calling the day following the 4th October, 1582, the 15th of October, 1582 (the 5th to the 14th of October inclusive being unwritten).

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, entury was 12 days, and in the present entury it is 13 days.

Of course, when the new style supersedes he old style, the days of the week, when wirhe change is made, follow the change. Thus endn 1752 the day after Wednesday the 2nd it if September was called Thursday the 14th.

Our Civil (otherwise Ecclesiastical or ON.legal) year used to begin with March 25th nd end with March 24th in the year followThis ceased at the end of 1751. The


may following, December 31st, 1751, was by IBAct of Parliament, January 1st, 1752. This nds the statutory adoption of the Histori18 Year, to agree with neighbouring nations, so to agree with the legal method of comtation in Scotland, and the common usage England.





The Historial Year had long been in comhon use, in almanacks and in the calenars in Prayer-books, e.g., in those of King ou' ward VI and Queen Elizabeth. Du There is a curious survival of the English if Style Year in the Financial Year, which fore 1752 began on March 25th. When the leven days were struck out of the calendar, e 25th March O.S.=the 5th April N.S., hich ought now to be 7th April, N.S., bo ich would be a date even more aggravatg to tax-payers than 5th April. Most of what I have written above is ken from the 'Handy-Book of Rules and nables for Verifying Dates,' by John J. 1 Bond, Assistant Keeper of Her Majesty's mitocord Office, fourth edition, George Bell had Sons, 1889, a very useful book. 158





ffe mir

It is impossible to reconcile the dates, cited in the query as given in Mr. Hilaire Belloc's Eye-Witness,' as they are all three n incorrect. See MR. BELLOC's reply at the pla second reference.


hur urt Dear CHAN

year ears


ROBERT PIERPOINT. HANGE OF BAPTISMAL NAMES (cl. 353, 431, 443).—It is customary (though not universally so) for Catholics to take an additional Christian name at confirmation; but this is not subsequently used in signing one's name. In most religious orders a new name is assumed on reception of the habit: it is an addition to, not a substitute for, hic the baptismal name; and the recipient is de usually known by it. French and Italian hich Benedictines, however, are addressed by be their surname, with the prefix of "Dom as Dom Cabrol, Dom Pitra, etc.



hose eter



Fort Augustus Abbey. nth According to Cripps, 'Law relating to

the Church and Clergy,' the change of baptismal names at confirmation is ordered only when "wanton names which being pronounced do sound to lasciviousness" have been given at baptism. FONCHY is probably aware that a registered Christian name can be formally altered after baptism. I have more than once issued certificates for this. purpose.

H. L.



"GERMAN LEGION AT COLCHESTER (cl. 351, 431).-Full particulars are given in Lieut.-Colonel Whitton's The Prince of Wales's Leicester Regiment, Royal Canadians,' Gale and Polden, pp. 246, et sqq, of a German legion, raised in 1855 largely from Germans who had emigrated to Canada and the States, for service in the Crimea. One training centre was Colchester. After the conclusion of the war many of the legionaries were established as military colonists in Kaffraria, Cape Colony. On the outbreak of the Indian Mutiny, over 1,000 of these settlers volunteered for service in India, and a battalion was formed, but landed in Calcutta too late to be employed actively. Five hundred and sixty of these gallant fellows, took permanent service under the Crown in the 3rd Bombay European Regiment, which became, in 1861, the 109th Bombay Infantry, and, in 1881, the 2nd Battalion of The Prince of Wales's Leinster Regt. (Royal Canadians), the first Battalion of which had been raised in Canada for service in theIndian Mutiny.

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J. S.

The King's German Legion was a large Corps in the pay of Great Britain, and incorporated with the British Army, from 1803 until its disbandment in 1816. The various regiments of which it was composed until 1816 when the Legion was disbanded, appear in the Official Army Lists from 1805 all the officers being then placed upon halfpay, with effect from 24 Feb.

At the time of its disbandment it consisted of four Regiments of Cavalry; eight Companies of Artillery; Engineers; two Battalions of Light Infantry; eight Battalions of Infantry of the Line. H.R.H. the Duke of Cambridge was its Colonel-inChief.

Its history (two vols.), written by Lieut.colonel N. L. Beamish, was published in London in 1832-7.


CORDON'S ITINERARIUM SEPTENTRIONALE' (cl. 424).-In a long paper communicated to the Soc. Antiq. Scotl. (Proceedings Dec. 8, 1873 vol. x., pp. 363-382), David Laing quotes from a letter of Gordon's (1731), as follows:

Some lovers of antiquity in Holland, being now printing Latin a edition of my 'Itinerarium Septentrionale,' are desirous to know if I could transmit to them any additions and corrections for the original in English.

In response to this desire, Gordon issued his Supplement, published by Vandendhoeck, Dutch printers in London, in 1732. Dr. Laing, in a note to Gordon's letter, expresses a doubt whether the proposed Latin edition ever appeared in Holland, as he had never seen it, or any mention of it in a catalogue. Mr. Gordon Goodwin makes no reference to it in his article on Alexander Gordon in the 'D.N.B.' (vol. xxii.). Allibone, however, states quite definitely that, a Latin version of both the book and the Supplement was published in Holland in 1731; but he names neither the place nor the publisher. D. O. HUNTER BLAIR. Fort Augustus Abbey.

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THE POTATO IN THE SEVENTEENTH CENTURY (cl._424). As the potato was introduced into Europe before the end of the sixteenth century, there are naturally plenty of references to it in the literature of the seventeenth. MR. SIMMONDS will find many, s.v., in such easily accessible works as the N.E.D.' and the ' Encyclopædia Britannica.' But as Louis IV. of France died in A.D. 954, it can hardly have been the flower either of Batatus edulis or Solanum tuberosum that he wore in his royal button-hole. D. O. HUNTER BLAIR. Fort Augustus Abbey.


Messrs. Erckmann-Chatrian, in their novel Les Etats-Généraux,' give a graphic account of the introduction of the potato into Lorraine in the eighteenth century, under Louis XVI. The seed is described as "Hanoverian roots,' "" but is said to have been brought from the Palatinate, where several persons had grown them for some time.' A later passage, at the end of the same chapter (iv.) implies that the potato was then unknown even in Paris. I have not the original here, but in the translation (The States-General'-Ward, Lock and Tyler, n.d.), it reads: The following spring we read in the gazettes that a brave


man named Parmentier had planted these roots in the neighbourhood of Paris, that he had sent some to the king, and that his majesty had eaten them!" (p. 64). G. H. WHITE.

23, Weighton Road, Anerley.

ORIGIN OF UPPER CLASSES": EXPRESSION (cl. 406).—The interesting story of the word class" should be read at large in the New English Dictionary,' the part edited by Sir James (then Dr.) Murray in 1889. Servius Tullius, the last but one of the kings of Rome (578-534, B.C.), reorganised the Roman army by dividing all the available men (apart from the



' equites or cavalry) into five divisions on a property qualification. The Latin word for such a division, classis, was borrowed into English before 1600; it appears in its English form, spelt classe, in a dictionary of the year 1656 (Thomas Blount's · Glossographia') defined as "" an order, or distribution of people according to their several Degrees. In Schools (wherein this word is most used) a Form or Lecture restrained to a certain company of Scholars." Dr. Murray remarks: The phrases Higher (Upper), Middle, Lower, Classes, Working Classes appear to be of modern introduction." The Dictionary's earliest quotations


are dated as follows:-lower classes of the

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people, 1772; working classes, 1816; upper classes, 1826; upper classes (of a school), 1740; middle classes, 1830; lower classes, 1832; the classes (Gladstone's antithesis to "the masses"), 1886; the lower order of Britons, 1712; lower orders of the English Gentry, 1749; lower orders, 1822; middle orders, 1823.


The Dictionary's earliest quotation for the masses "" is from Thomas Moore (1779 -1852) in the year 1837. But it is taken from his Journals and Correspondence,' not published until 1856 by Lord John Russell. A better example, therefore, would be this from Pickwick,' ch. li.; also of the year 1837: "This,' said the stranger [Mr. Slurk], this is gratitude for years of labour and study on behalf of the masses." L. R. M. STRACHAN. Birmingham University.




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The answer is in the affirmative. See

STEPHEN POPHAM, M.P. (cl. 442).— Col. Love's Vestiges of Old Madras? (Indian Record Series), iii. passim; particularly p. 159, n. 8. Popham, who afterwards became Company's. solicitor at Madras, arrived in Madras Roads on the

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Lord North on Feb. 8, 1778, having accom-
panied Sir John Day, Advocate-General of
Bengal, as secretary. Col. Love quotes from
Hicky's Bengal Gazette, July 29, 1780,
Popham, formerly a member of the Irish
Parliament, is said to have been appointed
by Whitehill to be his Private Secretary.
He was a brother of Sir Home Riggs Pop-
ham, consequently a son of Joseph (not
Stephen) Popham. See 11 S. v. 136, in re-
ply to a former query of G. F. R. B.'s.
George Munro Popham (also an Old West-
minster) and Stephen Popham, Capt.,
R. N., were sons of the Madras solicitor by
Anne his wife, sister of Sir George Thomas,
3rd Bart., of Yayton.

V. H.


RMS FOR IDENTIFICATION (cl. 441). -1. This coat probably belonged to a branch of the Tirrell family. The arms as blazoned by Papworth are, Gules, a fess between three crosses-crosslet argent, on a chief of the second a demi-lion rampant


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2. There is no coat in Papworth with an embattled fess between either lozenges or mascles (lozenges voided).

H. J. B. CLEMENTS. 43, Egerton Gardens, S.W.3.

BOARD (cl. 368). This department of
the United States Government is composed
of fifteen persons drawn from the staff of
the Smithsonian Institution and partly
from the Government Printing office. Its
services secure uniformity in the spelling of

geographical names in the national publica


The Clerestory, 18, Stanford Rd.,
Kennington Court, W.8.

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Nodal and Milner's Glossary of the Lancashire Dialect (Manchester, 1875) has: Scopperel, a round flat piece of bone with a hole in the middle, frequently made into a spinner or teetotum; also applied metaphorically to a young rascal. Icelandic skoppa, to spin like a top; skoppora-kringla, a top [the toy]."




Wick,' "the same word as quick " in the phrase the quick and the dead," is in frequent use in the dialect in this neighbourhood.



(9 S. viii. 304, 490, 530).-Mr. Charles

Nowell, F.L.A., compiled a bibliography of the bicycle which he published in No. 4 of the Readers' Bulletin, the magazine of the Coventry Public Libraries.



WILLIAM BROMLEY (cl. 442).-William Bromley, of Baginton, Warwickshire, M.P., eldest son (by his fourth wife Elizabeth, daughter of Lord Stawel), of Speaker Bromley, married, 1725, Lucy, daughter and heiress of Sir Clement Throckmorton of Hawley, Warwickshire. She was born in 1707. By her William Bromley had



250, 284, 412).-Though scarcely relevant to
the enquiry it seems worth while to mention
that claims to descent from Gundreda (de
Warenne) have been made by certain Gun-
There is
drys (and, perhaps, Grundys).
possibly some slight basis of fact for such
an assumption, inasmuch as this was once a


favourite name to bestow upon girls, and in A PROBLEM OF EARLY ENGLISH

certain instances, may
as a
metronymic. But even so, it is still a very
far cry from establishing a descent from the
countess whose remains lie at Southover.

HISTORY (cl. 383).-Mention is made in this article of the Arosæte, and it is surmised that they were in Mercia, and at a centre where some river-name would account for the nomenclature.

I should be very glad if G. F. R. B. could give me further information relating to this William Bromley.

When investigating and preparing the history of Wymeswold, recently mentioned

in your columns, I found that the now shrunken brook which flows through the village was once a stream of more consequence and bore the name (enshrined in field-names) of the Arrow or Harrow, with various spellings. This may be worth a mention, although the Worcestershire v. Arrow may explain the problem better than



CHRISTMAS AS A PLACE-NAME (cl. 442).—In order to make a reply to your correspondent of interest to other readers, perhaps the various places in the world called Christmas could be given.



Christmas Common is a tiny hamlet in the Chiltern Hills, about two miles from Watlington in Oxfordshire.


There are three Christmas Islands recognised by geographers: one on the Indian Ocean; another in the Pacific; and the third is situated in the Little Bras d'or, one of the salt-water lakes of Cape Breton Island. The South Pacific Christmas Island was so called because it was first discovered on Christmas Day, 1777, by Capt. Cook.

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There is Christmas Harbour in Kerguelen Island, and another Christmas Harbour at Kotzebue in the Pacific Ocean. Christmas cataracts are on the Berbice River in British Guiana. In South America there is Christmas Sound, lying between Tierra-del-Fuego and Waterman Island, and discovered on Christmas Eve, 1724.

Christmas Hill is the name of a farming district in Evelyn County, Victoria, twenty miles out of Melbourne, and the only place on the Australian Continent named after the festival.

H. PROSSER CHANTER. There is a Christmas Street at Kirkdale, Liverpool. ARCHIBALD SPARKE.

Westwood, Clitheroe.

There is a Christmas Common in Oxfordshire, on the north-western escarpment of the Chilterns, about 1 miles out of Watlington on the Turville road. (Ordnance Survey, one inch sheet, No. 106, Large Sheet Series.) Christmaspie is the name of a farm about one mile north of the Hogs Back, it is about mile S. W. of Wanborough Station on the Farnham and Alton Branch of the old L. & S. W. Railway, some four miles west of Guildford. A. R. Christmas Common is a hamlet and small

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