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amusement, if it indeed deserves the name, was finally abolished by the Duke of Devonshire in 1778 at the desire of the inhabitants of Tutbury, on account of the outrages to which it gave occasion."*
It appears that a custom under the same name- -that is, Bull-running-prevailed at the town of Stamford, in Lincolnshire, but with a very different origin and object. Richard Butcher, the historian of Stamford upon a small scale, speaks of it in no very measured terms, and, judging from the nature of such sports in general, there is little reason to suppose that he exaggerates in his narrative.
"The second sport, though more ancient than the former,† yet more beast-like then any. It is their bullrunning, a sport of no pleasure except to such as take a pleasure in beastlinesse and mischief. It is performed just the day six weekes before Christmas. The butchers of the town at their own charge against the time provide the wildest bull they can get. This bull over night is had in to some stable or barn belonging to the alderman. The next morning proclamation is made by the common bell-man of the town, round about the same, that each one shut up their shop doores and gates, and that none upon payne of imprisonment offer to doe any violence to strangers, for the preventing whereof (the town being a great thoroughfare, and then being in terme-time) a gard is appointed for the passing of travellers through the same without hurt; that none have any iron upon their bull-clubs, or other staffe, which they
pursue the bull with. Which proclamation made and
the gates all shut up, the bull is turned out of the alder
* See a letter signed A. W. in the Gentleman's Magazine, for July, 1782, vol. iii, p. 336.
† He had been speaking just before of horse-racing, which he dignifies with the name of "a sport savouring of manhood and gentry."
man's house; and then hivie-skivie tag and rag, men, and children, of all sorts and sizes, with all the dogs in the town, promiscuously running after him with their bull-clubs, spattering dirt in each other's faces that one would think them to be so many furies started out of hell for the punishment of Cerberus ; and, which is the greater shame, I have seen both senatores majoru gentiū, et matrones de eodem gradu, follow this bulling business.
"I can say no more of it, but only to set forth the antiquity thereof. As the tradition goes, William, Earle Warren, the first Lord of this town in the time of K. John standing upon his castle walls in Stamford, viewing the faire prospect of the river and medowes under the same, saw two bulls fighting for one cow. A butcher of the town, the owner of one of these bulls, with a great mastiffe dog accidentally coming by, set his dog upon his owne bull, who forced the same bull up into the towne, which no sooner was come within the same but all the butchers' dogs, both great and small, followed in the pursuit of the bull, which, by this time made starke mad with the noise of the people and the fiercenesse of the dogs, ran over man, woman, and child that stood in his way. This caused all the butchers and others in the town to rise up as it were in a tumult, making such a hideous noise that the sound thereof came into the castle into the eares of Earle Warren, who presently thereupon mounted on horseback, rid into the town to see the businesse, which then appearing to his humour very delightful, he gave all those medowes, in which the two bulls were at the first found fighting (which we now call the Castle Medowes) perpetually as a common to the butchers of the town (after the first grasse is eaten) to keep their cattle in till the time of slaughter; upon this condition that as upon that day on which this sport first began, which was (as I said before) that day six weekes
before Christmas, the butchers of the town should from time to time yearly for ever find a mad bull for the continuance of that sport.' "'*
It is from this circumstance that the old proverb arose of, "as mad as the baiting bull at Stamford."
"The Survey and Antiquitie of the Towne of Stamford." By Richard Butcher, chap. x., p. 39, 4to. London, 1646.
HELM-WIND.-HELM-BAR. The heights of Cross Fell are supposed to affect the weather in a manner somewhat similar to what the inhabitants of the Malabar and Coromandel coasts experience; and what are called in this country (Cumberland) Shedding-winds generally blow on the contrary signs of Cross-Fell, from opposite quarters to the Helm-winds; and the storms, which rake the country on one side of the mountain, seldom affect the other. Upon the summit of this lofty ridge of mountains there frequently hangs a vast volume of clouds, in a sullen and drowsy state, having little movement; this heavy collection of vapours often extends several miles in length, and dips itself from the summit, half way down to the base of those eminences; and frequently at the same time the other mountains in view are clear of mist and show no signs of rain. This helm, or cloud, exhibits an awful and solemn appearance, tinged with white by the sun's rays that strike the upper part, and spreads a gloom below over the inferior parts of the mountain, like the shadows of night. When this collection of vapour first begins to gather on the hills, there is to be observed hanging about it a black strip of cloud, continually flying off, and fed from the white part which is the real helm ; this strip is called the helm-bar, as during its appearance the winds are thought to be resisted by it; for on its
dispersion they rage vehemently upon the vallies beneath. The direction of the helm-bar is parallel to that part of the main cloud or collection of vapour, that is tinged with white by being struck with the sun's rays; the bar appears in continual agitation, as boiling, or struggling with contrary blasts; whilst the helm all this time keeps a motionless station. When the bar is dispersed, the winds that issue from the helm are sometimes extremely violent; but that force seems to be in proportion to the real current of the winds, which blow at a distance from the mountains, and which are frequently in a contrary direction, and then the helm-wind does not extend above two or three miles: without these impediments it seldom sweeps over a larger track than twelve miles, perhaps from the mere resistance of the lower atmosphere. It is remarkable that at the base of the mountain the blasts are much less violent than in the middle region; and yet the hurricane is sometimes impetuous even there, bearing every thing before it, when at the distance of a few miles there is a dead calm and a sunny sky. The spring is most favourable to this phenomenon; the helm-wind will sometimes blow for a fortnight 'till the air in the lower regions, warmed before by the influence of the sun, is thereby rendered piercing cold.*
Ritson's account of this phenomenon is yet more graphic and interesting.†
"As I am now to speak of the Helm-wind, it may be necessary for the sake of those readers, who have not seen any thing of the kind, to premise that Cross-Fells is one continued ridge, stretching without any branches, or even subject to mountains, except two or three conical hills
* Hutchinson's Cumberland, vol. i. p. 266.
+ In the Introduction to A SURVEY OF THE LAKES, by James Clarke. folio. London, 1787.