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It is a little singular that throughout the whole tale the host's name should be written Bosom and not Blossom, except only in the one place above quoted.*
Peine Forte et Dure.-" When a felon punishable with death takes a resolution not to make any answer to his judges, after the second calling upon he is carried back to his dungeon and is put to a sort of rack called Peine Forte et Dure. If he speaks, his indictment goes on in the usual forms; if he continues dumb, they leave him to die under that punishment. He is stretched out naked upon his back, and his arms and legs drawn out with cords and fastened to the four corners of the dungeon; a board, or plate of iron, is laid upon his stomach, and this is heaped up with stones to a certain weight. The next day they give him at three different times three little morsels of barley-bread, and nothing to drink; the next day, three little glasses of water, and nothing to eat; and if he continues in his obstinacy, they leave him in that condition 'till he dies. This is practised only on felons, or persons guilty of petty treason. Criminals of high treason in the like case would be condemned to the usual punishment; their silence would condemn them."‡
Auricular Confession. It has been asserted by many
* It however serves to show that the corruption of Blossom's Inn for Bosome's Inn, had already begun, for that Bosome was the original name there can be no doubt; as for example:
"I left her at Bosome's Inn; she'll be here presently." NORTHWARD HOE! by T. Dekker and J. Webster. Act 2. Sig. E. And again in Nash;
"Yet have I naturally cherisht it and hugt it in my bosome, even as a Carrier of Bosome's Inn dooth a cheese under his arme."—HAVE WITH YOU TO SAFFRON-WALDEN.-Epistle Dedicatorie. Sig. C. qrto. London, 1596.
"This sometimes happens because by that means the criminal prevents the confiscation of his estate." MISSON'S TRAVELS IN ENGLAND. Translated from the French by Oxell, p.217, 8vo. London. 1719.
that Auricular Confession originated in the very earliest. periods of the Christian Church; but in reality it does not appear to have existed before the time of Pope Innocent the Third, the successor of Victor the First, and who was raised to the popedom about the year 197.* It arose thus. Pope Zephyrinus had ordained that all Christians having obtained the age of puberty should communicate once a year at Easter. This in itself was a tolerable aggression on the rights of individuals, supposing individuals to have any rights; but it seems to be the nature of power, as it is of the sea, that when it does not recede it must encroach; and Innocent on his accession to the papal chair, not being satisfied with this hold upon the people, changed it into, or rather superadded to it, the confession of sins. This fact is distinctly stated by Platina, and is also mentioned by John Bale, Bishop of Ossory, in one of his many ferocious attacks upon the Roman Catholic Church. Confession," exclaims this apostle of intolerance, "is also a laudable ceremonye of yours, and was fyrst admitted by Pope Innocent in the most pestylet counsell of laterane for a mayntenance of your markett."
Langley Defresnoy says he was elected on the 25th of September, 197, but Godescard places his elevation in the year 202. According to Platina, he died in the time of the Emperor, Severus-" moritur Severi tempore." He was succeeded by Calixtus the First.
t "Idem (Zephyrinus) præterea instituit ut omnes Christiani annos pubertatis attingentes singulis annis in solenni die Pascha publicè communicarent. Quod quidem institutum Innocentius Tertius deinceps non ad communionem solum, verum etiam ad confessionem delictorum traduxit." PLATINA DE VITA PONTIFICUM.Zephyrinus, p. 20; 4to. Venetiis. 1562.
YET A COURSE AT THE ROMYSHE FOXE. A Disclosynge of the Manne of Synne. By John Harryson, p. 21, 12mo. Zurich, 1543. Harryson was one of the most frequent of the many names assumed by Bale in his constant attacks upon the Roman Catholics. It is most likely that the place also of publication has been fabricated,
I can not quit this subject without again adverting to Zephyrinus. He was a perfect martinet in ecclesiastical ceremonies, and busied himself not a little in adding to the external pomp and show of his Church, matters in which he appears to have taken a singular delight. Before his time the sacramental cup had been of wood, but he ordained that it should be made of glass, and subseIquent popes improved upon his arrangement, forbidding the use of either material; it was not to be of wood, on account of the rarity of the sacrament; nor of glass, because of its fragility; nor of any common metal, because of the bad flavour thus communicated; but of gold, or silver, or of tin, as appears from the canons promulgated by the Councils of Rheims and Tribur.*
Kichel Cake. “ Kichell, a cake, which Horace calleth libum,† and with us is called a God's Kichell, because godfathers and godmothers used commonly to give one of them to their god-children when they asked blessing. This word is in the Sompnour's Tale."+
and that the pamphlet was really printed in London. If any reader is at all curious to learn how mild and decent a bishop can be, he should turn to some of this writer's pamphlets; Billingsgate may match, but it cannot surpass, the rabid coarseness of the prelate. Statuit item ut consecratio divini sanguinis in vitreo vase, non autem in ligneo ut' antea fuit. Hæc quoque institutio sequentibus temporibus immutata est. Vetitum enim est ut neque in ligneo fieret propter raritatem quâ sacramentum imbibitur; neque in vitreo, propter fragilitatem ; neque ex metallo ob tetrum saporem quem inde concipit; sed fieri voluere ex auro, argentove, aut ex stanno, ut in Triburiensi (i. e. Tribur between Menz and Oppenheim) et Remensi Concilio scriptum apparet." PLATINA DE VITIS PONTIFICUMZephyrinus, p. 20. 4to. Venetiis; 1562.
+"Utque sacerdotis fugitivus liba recuso."
Q. Horatii Flacci Epist. Lib. i. Epist. x. v. 10. AUBREY'S REMAINS OF GENTILISME AND JUDAISME, p. 103. MS. folio. Bibl. Lansdowniana. Num. 231-77, c.-Brit. Museum.
The following is, I suppose, the passage alluded to by Aubrey, though in his usual careless way he has given no reference;
I must confess myself however, unable to perceive the resemblance of the libum to the kichell-cake of our ancestors, unless it is that Aubrey means to say they are alike in composition, no very probable assertion. Their purposes are totally different, the liba being cakes offered to Bacchus, Ceres, Pan, &c., and devoured by the priests and their servants. They were made, according to the best authorities of flour, oil, and honey, which I should hardly think was the case with the kichell-cakes, and were offered up in such abundance that the servants of the priests grew as tired of them as the Scotch Highlanders are said to be of salmon. Hence the simile of Horace, and his crying out for bread instead of honey-cakes.*
The Nine Worthies.-The Nine Worthies belong to poetry, and to that class of history, which without exactly ceasing to be fabulous yet verges on the real. Our old dramatists are frequent in their allusions to them. and Fletcher a boaster says,
Thus in Beaumont
When it is spread abroad
That you have dealt with me, they'll give you out
"Yeve us a bushel whete, or malt, or reye,
i.e." Give us a bushel of wheat, or malt, or rye, a God's kichel, or a small bit of cheese." The explanation of the word, given by Aubrey, is also in Speght's edition of Chaucer. It is however denied,—and I think with great justice, by Tyrwhitt, who says that the phrase is French. The addition of God would indeed seem to have been common among the pious rustics, when speaking of many other things; as, un bel ecu de Dieu,' ce pouvre enfant de Dieu," une benite aumone de Dieu," all of which phrases are in fact Hebraisms. As to the derivation of kichell, of which neither Aubrey nor Tyrwhitt have said a word, it is from the German diminutive KÜCHELCHEN, (pronounced kichelchen) i.e. " a little cake.
"Pane egeo, jam mellitis potiore placentis."
Q. Horatii Flacci Epist. Lib. i. Epist. x. v. 10. THIERRY AND THEODORET. Act ii. sc. iv. VOL. II,
These Worthies were in general, but not always, considered to be prefigured by Joshua, Judas Maccabæus, and David, for the Jews-Hector, Alexander the Great, and Julius Cæsar, for the classic times-Charlemagne, Godfrey of Bouillon, and King Arthur, for the days of chivalry. We find them all mentioned in Middleton's Masque of The World Tost at Tennis.
"Leave awhile your Thespian springs,
Enter at three several doors the NINE WORTHIES, three
after three, whom, as they enter, PALLAS describes.
These three were Hebrews;
This noble duke* was he at whose command
Hyperion rein'd his fiery coursers in
And fixed stood o'er Mount Gilboa ;
The noble Duke is Joshua, and the allusion, I need hardly say, is to his having caused the sun to stand still upon Gibeon. The word Duke is here used in its old meaning of Dux, a leader, from which it is derived.
i. e. Judas Maccabeus.
i. e. David.
In Dyce's edition it is, these. Wherever it is possible for him to blunder, he is sure to do so, and yet there are people mean enough, or ignorant enough, to bedaub him with their worthless praise, and almost put him on a level with Gifford. Well and wisely says the old proverb," asinus asinum fricat."
i. e. Alexander the Great.
i. e. Hector.