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adorned with ribbons. We find in Olaus Magnus, that the northern nations danced with brafs bells about their knees, and fuch we have upon feveral of these figures, who may perhaps be the original English performers in a May-game before the introduction of the real Morris dance. However this may be, the window exhibits a favourite diverfion of our ancestors in all its principal parts. I shall endeavour to explain fome of the characters, and in compliment to the lady I will begin the description with the front rank, in which she is ftationed. I am fortunate enough to have Mr. Steevens think with me, that figure 1. may be defigned for the Bavian fool, or the fool with the flabbering bib, as Bavon, in Cotgrave's French Dictionary, means a bib for a flabbering child, and this figure has fuch a bib, and a childish fimplicity in his countenance. Mr. Steevens refers to a paffage in Beaumont and Fletcher's play of The Two Noble Kinsmen, by which it appears that the Bavian in the Morris dance was a tumbler, and mimicked the barking of a dog. I apprehend that feveral of the Morris dancers on my window tumbled occafionally, and exerted the chief feat of their activity, when they were afide the May-pole; and I apprehend that jigs, hornpipes, and the hay, were their chief dances.
It will certainly be tedious to describe the colours of the dreffes, but the task is attempted upon an intimation, that it might not be altogether unacceptable. The Bavian's cap is red, faced with yellow, his bib yellow, his doublet blue, his hofe red, and his shoes black.
Figure 2. is the celebrated Maid Marian, who, as queen of May, has a golden grown on her head, and in her left hand a flower, as the emblem of fummer. The flower feems defigned for a red pink, but the pointals are omitted by the engraver, who copied from a drawing with the like mistake. Olaus Magnus mentions the artificial raifing of flowers for the celebration of May-day; and the suppofition of the like practice here will account for the queen of May having in her hand any particular flower before the feason of its natural production in this climate. Her vefture was once fashionable in the highest degree. It was anciently the custom for maiden ladies to wear their hair + dishevelled at their coronations,
Painting, 1598, Book II. p. 54, fays: "There are other a&ions of dancing ufed, as of thofe who are reprefented with weapons in their hands going round in a ring, capering skilfully, Shaking their weapons after the manner of the Morris, with divers actions of meeting, &c. "Others hanging Morris bells upon their ankles."
Markham's tranflation of Herefbatch's Hufbandry, 1631, obferves, "that gilliflowers, fet in pots and carried into vaults or cellars have flowered all the winter long, through the warmnefs of the place. + Leland's Collectanea, 1770, Vol. IV. p. 219, 293, Vol. V. p. 332, and Holinshed, Vol. III. p. 801, 931; and fee Capilli in Spelman's Gloffary.
their nuptials, and perhaps on all fplendid folemnities. Margaret, the eldest daughter of Henry VII. was married to James, King of Scotland, with the crown upon her head: her hair hanging down. Betwixt the crown and the hair was a very rich coif hanging down behind the whole length of the body. --- This fingle example fufficiently explains the drefs of Marian's head. Her coif is purple, her furcoat blue, her cuffs white, the skirts of her robe yellow, the sleeves of a carnation colour, and her ftomacher red with a yellow lace in cross bars. In Shakspeare's play of Henry VIII. Anne Bullen at her coronation is in her hair, or as Holinshed says, "her hair hanged down, but on her head she had a coif with a circlet about it full of rich ftones.
Figure 3. is a friar in the full clerical tonfure, with the chaplet of white and red beads in his right hand; and, expreffive of his profeffed humility, his eyes, are caft upon the ground. His corded girdle, and his ruffet habit, denote him to be of the Francifcan order, or one of the grey friars, as they were commonly called from the colour of their apparel, which was a ruffet or a brown ruffet, as Holinfhed, 1586, Vol. III. p. 789, obferves. The mixture of colours in his habit may be resembled to a grey cloud, faintly tinged with red by the beams of the rifing fun, and streaked with black; and fuch perhaps was Shakspeare's Aurora, or "the morn in ruffet mantle clad. Hamlet, A& I. fc. i. The friar's ftockings are red, his red girdle is ornamented with a golden twill, and with a golden taffel. At his girdle hangs a wallet for the reception of provifion, the only revenue of the mendicant orders of religious, who were named Walleteers or budget-bearers. It was customary * in former times for the priest and people in proceffion to go to fome adjoining wood on May-day morning, and return in a fort of triumph with a May-pole, boughs, flowers, garlands, and fuch like tokens of the spring; and as the grey friars were held in very great esteem, perhaps on this occafion their attendance was frequently requested. Moft of Shakspeare's friars are Francifcans. Mr. Steevens ingeniously suggests, that as Marian was the name of Robin Hood's beloved miftrefs, and as fhe was the. queen of May, the Morris friar was defigned for friar Tuck, chaplain to Robin Huid, king of May, as Robin Hood is ftyled in Sir
*See Maii inductio in Cowel's Law Dictionary. When the parish priests were inhibited by the diocefan to affift in the May games, the Francifcans might give attendance, as being exempted from epifcopal jurifdiction.
Splendid girdles appear to have been a great article of monaftick finery, Wykeham, in his Vifitatio Notabilis, prohibits the Canons of Selborne any longer wearing filken girdles ornamented with gold or filver: "Zonifve fericis auri vel argenti ornatum habentibus." Natural History and Antiquities of Selborne, p. 371. and Appendix, P. 459. HOLT WHITE,
David Dalrymple's extracts from the book of the Univerfal Kirk, in the year 1576.
Figure 4. has been taken to be Marian's gentleman-ufher, Mr. Steevens confiders him as Marian's paramour, who in delicacy appears uncovered before her; and as it was a cuftom for betrothed perfous to wear fome mark for a token of their mutual engagement, he thinks that the cross-shaped flower on the head of this figure, and the flower in Marian's hand, denote their esposals or contract. Spenfer's Shepherd's Calendar, April, specifies the flowers worn of paramours to be the pink, the purple columbine, gilliflowers, carnations, and fops in wine. I fuppofe the flower in Marian's hand to be a pink, and this to be a ftock-gilliflower, or the Hefperis, dame's violet, or queen's gilliflower; but perhaps it may be defigned for an ornamental ribbon. An eminent botanift apprehends the flower upon the man's head to be an Epimedium. Many particulars of this figure refemble Abfolon, the parish clerk in Chaucer's Miller's Tale, fuch as his curled and golden hair, his kirtle of watch t, his red hofe, and Paul's windows corvin on his shoes, that is, his shoes pinked and cut into holes, like the windows of St. Paul's ancient church. My window plainly exhibits upon his right thigh a yellow fcrip or pouch, in which he might, as treasurer to the company, put the collected pence, which he might receive, though the cordelier muft, by the rules of his order, carry no money about him. If this figure should not be allowed to be a parish clerk, I incline to call him Hocus Pocus, or fome juggler attendant upon the mafter of the hobby-horfe, as "faire de tours de (jouer de la) gibecière,” in Boyer's French Dictionary, fignifies to play tricks by virtue of Hocus Pocus. red ftomacher has a yellow lace, and his shoes are yellow. Ben Jonfon mentions "Hokos Pokos in a juggler's jerkin, which Skinner derives from kirtlekin; that is, a short kirtle, and such feems to be the coat of this figure."
Figure 5. is the famous hobby-horfe, who was often forgotten or difufed in the Morris dance, even after Maid Marian, the friar, and the fool, were continued in it, as is intimated in Ben Jonson's mafque of The Metamorphofed Gipfies, and in his Entertainment of the Queen and Prince at Althorpe. * Our hobby is a spirited horse
Vol. VI. p. 93, of Whailey's edition, 1756:
"Clo. They should be Morris dancers by their gingle, but they have no napkins.
Coc. No, nor a hobby-horse.
"Clo. Oh, he's often forgotten, that's no rule; but there is no Maid Marian nor friar amongst them, which is the furer mark." Vol. V. p. 211:
"But fee, the hobby - horfe is forgot,
"Fool, it must be your lot
"To fupply his want with faces,
**And fome other buffoon graces
of pafteboard, in which the mafter dances,* and displays tricks of legerdemain, fuch as the threading of the needle, the mimicking of the whigh-hie, and the daggers in the nofe, &c. as Ben Jonfon, edit. 1756, Vol. I. p. 171, acquaints us, and thereby explains the fwords in the man's cheeks. What is ftuck in the horfe's mouth I apprehend to be a ladle ornamented with a ribbon. Its ufe was to receive the spectators' pecuniary donations. The crimfon foot-cloth fretted with gold, the golden bit, the purple bridle with a golden taffel, and ftudded with gold; the man's purple mantle with a golden border, which is latticed with purple, his golden crown, purple cap with a red feather, and with a golden knop, induce me to think him to be the king of May; though he now appears as a juggler and a buffoon. We are to recollect the fimplicity of ancient times, which knew not polite literature, and delighted in jesters, tumblers, jugglers, and pantomimes. The emperor Lewis the Debonair not only fent for fuch actors upon great feftivals, but out of complaifance to the people was obliged to affift at their plays, though he was averse to publick shews. Queen Elizabeth was entertained at Kenelworth with Italian tumblers, Morris dancers, &c. The colour of the hobby-horse is a reddish white, like the beautiful bloffom of the peach-tree. The man's coat or doublet is the only one upon the window that has buttons upon it, and the right fide of it is yellow, and the left red. Such a particoloured jacket,+ and hose in the like manner, were occafionally fashionable from Chaucer's days to Ben Jonson's, who, in Epigram 73, speaks of a "partie-per-pale picture, one half drawn in folemn Cyprus, the other cobweb lawn."
Figure 6. feems to be a clown, peasant, or yeoman, by his brown vifage, notted hair, and robust limbs. In Beaumont and Fletcher's play of The Two Noble Kinsmen, a clown is placed next to the Bavian fool in the Morris dance; and this figure is next to him on the file, or in the downward line. His bonnet is red, faced with yellow, his jacket red, his fleeves yellow, ftriped across or rayed with red, the upper part of his hofe is like the sleeves, and the lower part is a coarfe deep purple, his shoes red.
Figure 7. by the fuperior neatnefs of his dress, may be a franklin or a gentleman of fortune. His hair is curled, his bonnet purple,
Dr. Plot's Hiftory of Staffordshire, p. 434, mentions a dance by a hobby horfe and fix others.
Holinshed, 1586, Vol. III. p. 326, 805, 812, 844, 953. Whalley's edition of Ben Jonfon, Vol. VI. p. 248. Stowe's Survey of London,. 1720, Book V. p. 164, 166. Urry's Chaucer, p. 198.
So, in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, the yeoman is thus defcribed; "A nott hede had he, with a brown vifage.
Again, in The Widow's Tears, by Chapman, 1612: Bot-headed country gentleman.
his doublet red with gathered sleeves, and his yellow ftomacher is laced with red. His hofe red, ftriped acrofs or rayed with a whitish brown, and fpotted brown. His cod-piece is yellow, and fo are his shoes.
Figure 8. the May-pole, is painted yellow and black in spiral lines. Spelman's Glossary mentions the custom of erecting a tall May-pole painted with various colours. Shakspeare, in the play of A Midsummer Night's Dream, Act. III. fc. ii. speaks of a painted May-pole. Upon our pole are difplayed St. George's red cross, or the banner of England, and a white pennon or ftreamer emblazoned with a red cross terminating like the blade of a fword, but the delineation thereof is much faded. It is plain however from an infpection of the window, that the upright line of the crofs, which is disunited in the engraving, should be continuous.* Keyfler, in p. 78, of his Northern and Celtic Antiquities, gives us perhaps the original of May-poles; and that the French used to erect them appears alfo from Mezeray's Hiftory of their King Henry IV. and from a passage in Stowe's Chronicle in the year 1560. Mr. Theobald and Dr. Warburton acquaint us that the May-games, and particularly some of the characters in them, became exceptionable to the puritanical humour of former times. By an ordinance of the Rump Parliament + in April, 1644, all May-poles were taken down and removed by the conftables and churchwardens, &c. After the Reftoration they were permitted to be erected again. I apprehend they are now generally unregarded and unfrequented, but we ftill on May-day adorn our doors in the country with flowers and the boughs of birch, which tree was especially honoured on the fame feftival by our Gothic ancestors. To prove figure 9. to be Tom the Piper, Mr. Steevens has very happily quoted these lines from Drayton's third Eclogue:
Myself above Tom Piper to advance,
"Who fo beftirs him in the Morris dance
His tabour, tabour-ftick, and pipe, atteft his profeffion; the feather in his cap, his fword, and filver-tinctured shield, may des
St. James was the apoftle and patron of Spain, and the knights of his order were the most honourable there; and the enfign that they wore was white, charged with a red crois in the form of a fword. The pennon or ftreamer upon the May-pole feems to contain fuch a crofs. If this conjecture be admitted, we have the banner of England and the enfign of Spain upon the May-pole; and perhaps from this circumftance we may infer that the glafs was painted during the marriage of King Henry VIII. and Katharine of Spain. For an account of the enfign of the knights of St. James, fee Afhmole's History of the Order of the Garter, and Mariana's Hiftory of Spain.
This should have been called the Long parliament. The Rump Parliament was in Oliver's time. REED.