[From Manx Note Book, vol ii, 1886]

Notes and Queries

GEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF THE ISLAND.— We are very pleased to hear that Professor W Boyd Dawkins, M.A., F.R.S., has commenced a Geological Survey of the Island. Cumming's Geological work in the Island was well done, as far as it went, but this science has much advanced since his day, and we expect that the learned Professor's investigations will give most valuable and interacting report.

THE ANTHROPOLOGY OF THE ISLE OF MANN.—Dr. John Beddoe, F.R.S., the talented author of The Races of Britain, has, during a recent visit to the Island, collected statistics of the physical characteristics of Manxmen, and has embodied the results in a most interesting article, which he has kindly sent us for publication in our next issue.

THE MAL LUMGUN CROSS.—Important facts respecting the Mal Lumgun Cross at Kirk Michael have just been brought to light by Dr. Vigfusson and the Rev. Ernest B. Savage, full particulars of which will appear in the next number: but it will interest our readers to know that Mat is the true reading in the first word, and not Nial, and that the legend " It is better to have a good foster son than a bad son," is on the back of this cross, but has for many years been hidden in the masonry of the wall. This is the inscription of which it has so often been said " formerly in Kirk Michael Churchyard, now lost."

ACCOUNTS OF THE CALF ISLAND IN 1708.—1708: The profits of the Calve Isle this year—

13 stone &c of fleece woll ,,. , ... 04: 15: 06

The puffins of ye sd Isle this year being 2618 11 . 0 06

birds at 1d .,. .. .. ... ... ~3 5

The Rabbets of sd Isle this year being 180 1

cuppll at 2d per cuppu ~ al: IO . 00

ffor Greasing in ye sd Isle John Cubben 1 Colt oo: 02: oo

& 6 other colts by different people tl oo: 14: oo TO ' I Z ' o6

THE EFFICACY OF CHARMS was at one time universally believed in by the country people and indeed the belief is by no means obsolete. The following is a curious account of the punishment of an charmer," extracted from the Ecclesiastical Records: " In 1735 Alice Cowley, of Ballaugh, who was a regular dealer in charms offered a youth if he would give her a ninepenny piece, she would give him something that would make a young woman fall in love with him, which proves to be a powder in paper, which he believes to be powder of some of the bright stones of Foxdale +, After some further evidence the sentence was pronounced of " Imprisonment for 50 days and before releasement to give in sufficient security, to stand 2 hours in a white sheet, a white wand in her right hand and these words 'for charming and socery' in capital letters on her breast, in the four market towns of the Island at the public cross in the height of the market, and afterwards to do penance in Ballaugh Church." Bishop Wilson, who administered the ecclesiastical law in such cases as well as in cases of adultery with relentless severity, writes as follows under date April 24th 1735, " There is a cursed practice carry'd on secretly by Satan and his instruments, which I beseech you, my brethren, take this proper occasion to speak upon—both to terrify those that practise it and to confirm people's faith in God, against any hurt that the devil or his agents can do them. Many complaints have been brought into our courts against people using foolish and wicked charms and arts either to injure their neighbour in his goods, or to transfer them to themselves, to the great dishonour of God, who alone can increase the fruits of the earth to our comfort, or with hold them for our sins. And indeed it is for want of a true faith in God's power and goodness that makes men affraid of what such wretched instruments of satan can do, since even the devil himself cannot put the persons or goods of such as put their trust in God, and pray daily (as they should be exhorted to do) for God's protection and blessing upon themselves, their children, their goods and their labours, which if Christians neglect to do, no wonder if satan by a righteous judgement of God, gets a power over them to hurt them by his wicked instrumented'

JAMES 7TH EARL OF DERBY.—The following stanza was written in 1649 to commemorate the famous reply to Commissary General Ireton's letter demanding the surrender of the Island—

" The Isle of Man is yet our owne,
Brave Darby safe and sound,
T'is he that keeps the English Crown
Why then should he compound ?"

RECORD COMMISSION, 1833.——The Record Commission in 1833 issued a circular to the Isle of Mann, asking for information concerning Insular Charters, proceedings of the various Courts, Treatises relating to the ancient Laws, and Legal Customs, Traditions, Ballads, Proverbs, etc., and requesting .. Impressions from the Matrices of the Official Seals in use in the Island," and " Rubbings, or Impressions or Casts of all the Runic Inscriptions now existing in the Island." Can anyone tell me if any answer was made to these queries, and if so where a copy may be seen, and if the impressions from the Seals and Runic Monuments were sent ?


Can any of your readers tell me why the City of Chester pays for winding the Clock and supplying it with oil, and for hoisting the Flag at Castle Rushen ? Q.

OLD SCHOOL CUSTOMS.—Vol. II., p. 140.—SHENNAGHEE in your last issue gives a verse of an old rhyme which we repeated at school in the south of England many years ago. The first line, however, was

Omne bone—sine pcena,+

Not "sine Jesua. "A We had also a second verse, the first line of which I have forgotten, but the last three were:

Visne edere pomum,
Sinon vis- mirabile est
Dulce redire domum ?

F. S.

KING ORRY'S GRAVE.—Ward & Lock's Guide to the Isle of Mann, page 132, makes the statement that when the Cairn known as King Orry's Grave was opened about 30 years ago a sword, a horse-shoe, and a number of bones and horse's teeth were found in it. Referring to this reported "find," it is stated in the first Vol. of Manx Antiquities," p. 104, published by the Manx Society, that Mr. David Forbes said that the sword thus found was presented to his brother, Prof. E. Forbes, and that the horse-shoe fell into the hands of Mr. Paul Bridson. Against these statements the present "proprietor" of the monument (who by the way charges the public the sum of twopence each person for permission to see its relics,) asserts that no sword was found in the grave, and that the horse-shoe found is in his possession, and always has been. In support of this assertion he exhibits a small horse-shoe as the one in question. I shall be glad if any reader of The Manx Note Book can give me any precise information upon the point in question.


Hon. Sec. Isle of Mann Natural History and Antiquarian Society.

BOOKS RECEIVED.—A History of Derbyshire, by John Pendleton; London: Elliot Stock. This is the third of a popular series of County Histories projected by Mr. Elliot Stock, the two first having been devoted to Norfolk and Devonshire. It is well printed and tastefully bound, and contains an interesting, though scarcely complete, description of the towns and country districts of this picturesque county. Walford's Antiquarian Magazine the Wester,' Magazine, and the Naturalist. Mr. Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, London, has also just issued another volume of his very tasteful " Book-Lovers' Library " entitled The Literature of Local Institutions, by Mr. G. Laurence Gomme, F. S. A. This really valuable little book gives, in addition to an interesting account of local institutions, a summary of the records relating to them which have been already printed.

+ [Yes—This was a misprint.—Ed.]


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