Page images
PDF
EPUB

they, in general, have only one end harp, and the other formed into a kind of groove or locket to fix á handle in, and some have a loop annexed to them; but this is deftitute of every thing of that kind, and seems intended to have been held in the hand only for use, whatever that use might be. To what purposes the different kinds of Celts were applied, has been a matter of much debate : fome suppose them to have been the heads of spears, or walking staves, of the civilized Britons; others, that they were chissels used by the Romans for cutting and polishing ftones. Dr. Stukely imagines, that they were not weapons, but inftruments employed by the Druids to cut off the boughs of oak and milletoe, and that they often hung them to their girdles. One exactly similar to this of Mr. Lori's, was found at Herculaneum, and exhibited by the Count de Caylus. Mr. Lort intimates, that they might be appropriated to facred uses, and asks, why may we not suppose, that they were applied to the taking off the skins of the victims? To this article, is added, an account of a variety of Celts from the minutes of the Society, with some short descriptions, and also engravings of them all, as well as of Mr. Lort's, and another exactly fitted with a brass case, in the possession of his friend Mr. Bartlett.

The Hon. Daines Barrington has employed his time very laudably, in reading, with attention, the book of Genefis, one effect of which has been, the forming a sketch of the patriarchal customs and manners, which he here exhibits to public notice. We cannot enumerate the different subjects he mentions, and on which he enlarges. We do not find ourselves entirely satis. fied with the explication he gives of the phrase, which he supposes, confined to the death of a patriarch, that he was gathered 1. his people : as he did not, we are told, understand the meaning of either the English or Latin translation, he consulted the Septuagint, the words of which he translates, the corpse was produced before his people (according to the first senle which Stephens gives to the verb pocetion), and infers, that the honour of producing the dead body; and weeping over it in public, was paid only to the head of the patriarchal family.-He expresses his earneft will that travellers into the Promised Land would look out for many patriarchal antiquities which are not of a perishable nature. Dr. Shaw informs us, that the Mahometans continue to thew the cave of Macphelah, and Mr. Barrington fees no greater difficulties in discovering the cave neat Zoar, in which Lot and his daughters lived. Some of the pillars also commemorating particular events may, he apprehends, remain, and farther esteems it likely that the twelve stones which Joshua ordered to be placed where the Israelites should 5

encamp

encamp after the passage of the Jordan, may still be found out by an inquisitive and persevering traveller.

The Rev. Mr. Drake's observations on two Roman stations in Essex, are chiefly designed to determine some of the places mentioned in the Itinerary of Antonine as lying in the Roman roads that pass through this county. Camulodunum or Colonia is agreed to be Colchester, and it is remarkable how nearly the present number of miles from London to that town agree with the distance fixed in the Itinerary. Durolitum has been, by ge. neral consent, assigned to Layton-Stone. Cæsaromagus is attended with more uncertainty ; it has been taken for Burghsted, or for Chelmsford. Bishop Gibson is the only person who fixes it at Dunmowe; in which opinion Mr. Drake concurs with him, and offers some reasons, particularly the discovery of some reliques of Roman antiquities in and about the place, which he thinks confirm and establith the fact. The Itinerary mentions a middle station between Camulodunum and Cæfaromagus, which is called Canonium. Mr. Drake apprehends he has discovered a place which exa&tly coincides with the numbers of the Itinerary; the town he means is Coggelhall, where he says fufficient remains of antiquity (some of which he inserts) have been found to entitle it to the character of a Roman station.

An old piece of ordnance was dragged out of the sea by some fishermen, near the Goodwin Sands, in 1775, and is said to be still in their possession, at Ramsgate. Edward King, Esq; gives a particular description of it, accompanied with many fenlible remarks, together with engravings of the piece, and of the figure of a great gun resembling it, exhibited by an old Spa, nich writer and engineer. Froin some of its ornaments, Mr. King thinks it may fairly be judged to be so very old as to have been cast about the year 1370, that is, not long after the very first introduction of these formidable inftruments of war into Europe : he supposes it to have been cait in Portugal, and pro. bably lost from on board some of the ships which came to negociate with John duke of Lancaster. He particularly describes the construction of this ancient piece, and minutely examines every part, the engravings of which are allo so exact, that we may form a very good idea of it without having perfonally viewed it. The ornaments also undergo a strict inquiry; they are chiefly arms, and clearly thew that it is of Portuguele original. To observations of this kind he adds a few circumstances of its present condition, remarking that the handle and swivel, which are of iron, are much corroded and injured, but the barrel, which is of brass, is very little affected by lying so long in the sea, and is nearly as entire as ever; so well does this metal maintain its durability amidst the salts of the sea, as well as in those of the air, and deserve to be mentioned, even proverbially, as Horace mentions it. But the barrel, though not corroded, is partly covered with a thick incrustation of thells, mixed with gravel and fand, and hard as a rock; a proof that a species of petrefaction is continually going on, at the bottom of the sea, on our coasts, in a manner similar to that mentioned by Dr. Donati, at the bottom of the Adriatic, of which an account is given in the Philosophical Transactions *. We are farther informed, that there was a very large old cannon, of extraordinary length, which had the date 1354 on it, and therefore was, probably, one of the very pieces used by Edward III. at the battle of Poictiers, in 1356, which was one of the first occasions on which they were introduced into the field in Europe ; but I am sorry to add, says Mr. King, that it was lait

year taken away in order to be melted down.' A notion has prevailed, though it is questionable whether it generally prevails at present, that Ireland and Thanet are void of serpents. Mr. Pegge examines it, and calls it a mistaken opinion; but he does not so much deny the fact, as the miraculous-cause, to which it is attributed, viz. the bleffing and inAuence of some early faints. When we consider that they are islands, it seems, says he, no more than natural, that they should be deftitute of noxious animals, as is said to be the case with some other islands; and what occasion is there for superftitious notions, and incredible manoeuvres, when the facts, fuppofing them real, can be fo readily accounted for on the fighteft confideration, from the common course and nature of things?

Several hundred gold coins, in excellent preservation, were discovered a short time fince, on demolishing the ancient castle of Fenwick, in Northumberland, and in the poffeffion of Sir Walter Blackett. One of these coins, a very fair noble of Edward III. was exhibited to the Society, Feb. i, 1776. This anonymous article tells us, that they had been depofited in an open cheit, covered with fand, twelve inches deep; the chest was placed over the arch of a cellar door which stood immediately under the Aags of the threshold of the castle gate. Afhort account here given of the Fenwick family, the original proprietors, renders it probable, that the coins were lodged there about the year 1360, by a Sir John Fenwick, who, in troublesome times, took this method of concealing a treasure, of no inconsiderable amount in those days; which was also the more scarce and curious, as being a novel and valuable species of English coinage : and it is likely he alone was privy to the concealment of it.

# Vol. xlix. P. 588--40 Rev. Feb. 1780

1

In

In a letter to Dr. Milles, dated from Venice, Mr. John Strange gives a farther account of some ancient Roman inicriptions observed in the provinces of Istria and Dalmatia: these are communicated to him, as were the former *, by the learned Abbe Fortis, who also hoped to have made a collection of the kind, in a late Appennine tour, but was rather disappointed in his researches, since Italy has been so thoroughly visited with this view, that it is no easy matter to make new discoveries ; some few, however, he imparts, which are here inserted. To compensate for the Abbe's ill success, Mr. Strange avails himself of some information he received from his friend Sir Roger Newdigate, who having visited the city of Aoste, in Savoy, sends some account of its remaining antiquities, and adds a few Roman inscriptions, which he copied from the collection at the convent of St. Bernard; but the stones are no longer remaining. It is to be wilhed, that this learned Society would favour the public with some short remarks on, and explications of, these inscriptions, without which, to the greater part of readers, they are often of little use or amusement.

Dr. Morell, in a Latin letter to the Hon. Daines Barrington, offers considerations to confirm his opinion concerning the Corbridge altars. Vid. Archaeol. vol. iii. p. 333.

This letter is followed by an illustration of a Saxon infcription on the church of Kirkdale, in the North Riding of Yorkfhire. John-Charles Brooke, Esq; fent an exact representation of it, to Mr. Gough, with a view of the church, which are here engraved. Memorials of the erection and confecration of our churches by inscriptions, are said not to be numerous; but, antecedently to the Norman conqueft, to be indeed exceeding rare. This, therefore, is regarded as a singular curiofity. The inscription translated is this; “ Orm, Gamal's son, bought St. Gregory's church, then it was all gone to ruin and fallen down. Chehitle, and others, renewed it from the ground, to Christ and St. Gregory, in Edward's days the king, and in Tofi's days the Earl.” Under the dial, “ And Hawarth me made, and Brand the priest.” This inscription is engraved on one entire freeftone of large dimensions, being seven feet five inches long, one foot ten inches high, and in perfect preservation, except a small part in the centre, where the infcription is disfigured, but not obliterated by the weather. It may be inferred with a great probability, that the church was rebuilt, and this infcription engraved, between the years 1056 and 1065.

Hayman Rooke, Erq; furnishes a description of two Roman camps in Lydney Park, Gloucestershire, the seat of Thomas

• Vid. Archaeol. vol. iii. p. 337–349; also, Review for Dec. 1775, p. 499.

Bathurst,

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Bathurst, Esq; about eight miles east of Chepstow; a spot abounding with pleasing prospects and romantic scenes. On aulo hills, of considerable eminence, Itand two camps, or forts, overlooking the Severn, which, with some works on the opposite fide, on a spot now called Oldbury, entirely command the passage of that river. As the command of such a river made these parts of considerable consequence, they were undoubtedly entrusted to officers of some rank, and accordingly they appear to have had all necessary accommodations for the Roman style of living. A very elegant bath is still pretty entire ; and from remaining foundations of buildings, it appears that some of the pavements were tesselated. Various coins are found here; a silver one of Galba, with many of Adrian and Antoninus. A good engraving of these camps attends the article, and also four different views of them; which are indeed elegant and pleasing

Mr. John-Charles Brooke, of the Heralds college, presents us with the following Number, which gives an account of an ancient seal that belonged to Robert the Vth, Baron FitzWalter, who was, he says, the son of Walter, and grandson of Robert, Lord Fitz-Walter, Marshal of the army of God, and holy church, as appears by the shield of arms under the horse's head (in the seal), which bears the coat of his second wife, who was a Ferrers. This, and much more, is in the Heralds style. The feal was found at Stamford, in Lincolnshire, in the reign of Charles IId, and was given to Robert Saunderson, then bishop of Lincoln, whose great grandson, John King, Efq; fold it to the Rev. Richard Neate, LL. B. of Whetstone, in Middlesex, the present poffeffor. It is of silver, and weighs seven ounces and seven penny weights. The extreme elegance of the workmanship, we are told, might induce a common observer to doubt its antiquity; but Mr. Brooke offers arguments to remove the objection. He particularly proves, from ancient manuscripts, that this Robert, Lord Fitz Walter, possessed Baynard's Castle, in the city of London, which was then called the Castle of London, and as constable of the same, enjoyed divers liberties and priveleges. In time of war, it was ordered, that he should ride on a light-horse, with twenty men at arms, to the door of St. Paul's church, with the banner of his arms carried before him; and that there he should be met by the Mayor, and others, when the Mayor should appoint him 'Banner-bearer to the city, and present him with a horfe worth twenty pounds, which horse, it is added, shall be faddled with saddle of his arms, and covered with filt, depifled likewise with the fame arms.

In memory of this privilege and honour, Mr. Brooke supposes the seal in queftion to have been made. This feal is here engraved, together with the drawing of another of

I 2

the

« PreviousContinue »