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John Keble's Parishes
by Charlotte M Yonge
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It was on a beautiful day, with the celandines shining like stars on the bank, that we laid him in his grave, a concourse of sorrowing friends being present, who could look to him as having wakened and cherished their best aspirations; and those who had come under his personal influence feeling that a loved father had been taken away. It was on that day that Alexander Forbes, Bishop of Brechin, Dr. Pusey, Dean Hook, Sir William Heathcote, Dean Butler, and others, decided that the most fitting memorial would be the building of the College at Oxford which bears his name, and is pledged to Church principles, and to a scale of expenses not beyond the reach of less wealthy students. A monument was in due time raised above the graves, designed by Mr. Butterfield—Mr. Keble's in red granite, Mrs. Keble's in Derbyshire marble.

The place in the chancel where the coffin of John Keble, priest of the parish, had been placed before the morning's Celebration, was marked by a brass cross given by the parishioners, who more and more felt that they had had among them a saint of God, and can hardly fail to think of him when they sing, "O ye holy and humble men of heart, bless ye the Lord, praise Him and magnify Him for ever."



CHAPTER XIII—LATER CHANGES



In the October of 1853, the Rev. Robert F. Wilson having resigned the curacy of Ampfield, he was replaced by the Rev. John Frewen Moor, who on 12th January of the next year became perpetual curate and by and by vicar.

Improvements in the church advanced in his time. The stained glass of the east and west windows of the church were given by Sir William and Lady Heathcote, the south-east window is a memorial of Mr. Keble, the other south windows of Mr. Moor's three sons, one of whom was drowned while preparing for mission work in Newfoundland, and another died on his return from what was truly a pilgrimage to the Holy Land.

On Mr. Keble's death, the Rev. James Gavin Young, brother to the much beloved curate, the Rev. Peter Young, was presented to the living of Hursley.

In 1871 the Rev. William Bigg Wither, after thirty-five years' diligent work in the parish, decided on accepting the rectory of Hardwicke in Buckinghamshire. Great improvements had taken place in his time, and he was greatly beloved by his flock, from whom, for nearly forty years, he had never been absent for a single Sunday, and during all that time had given them the privilege of daily matins and evensong.

As he never liked the acceptance of testimonials, it was resolved that, in memory of his long services, a new girls' school should be built, the old one having become quite insufficient, and with it a master's house with a tower to contain a village clock, which was given out of the savings of Mrs. Smith and her sister and brother Miss and Mr. Pink, a kind old thatcher, who will long be remembered.

In that year, 1869, Bishop Sumner resigned the see of Winchester, and for three years the diocese had the benefit of the great powers and eloquence of Bishop Samuel Wilberforce, whose Confirmation addresses at each of the churches will be remembered for life by his candidates.

The Rev. Walter Francis Elgie became Mr. Young's curate at Otterbourne, and in 1875 the first vicar thereof, Sir William Heathcote having arranged the means of undoing Bishop Pontissara's injustice. This was rendered practicable by the liberality of Mrs. William Gibbs, who purchased the advowson of Otterbourne for a sum that Sir William applied to the endowment of Hursley, so as to compensate for the loss of the tithes of Otterbourne.

By this time a considerable industry had grown up at Allbrook with a saw mill and brick making, and the inhabitants, with a little assistance, erected a mission chapel and school. There the kind and excellent Rowland Jones Bateman, Esquire, of the Grange, gave hearty assistance as a teacher, and latterly as a licensed reader, being thus appointed by Bishop Edward Harold Browne, who succeeded to the See of Winchester on the sudden death of Bishop Wilberforce.

He came to reconsecrate Otterbourne Church, when an apse had been added to the choir, and several other alterations made, with the view of rendering it more suitable for devout worship than knowledge or means had made practicable when the church was built; and other alterations have since been made in the same direction.

The kindly and open-hearted Squire of Cranbury, Thomas Chamberlayne, Esq., died on October 1876, being succeeded by his son Tankerville Chamberlayne, Esq.; and Brambridge, after descending from the Smythes to a niece, the Honourable Mrs. Craven, whose son sold it, has since several times changed owners.

On the 25th February 1881, Otterbourne lost the first vicar, Mr. Elgie, and the Rev. Henry Walter Brock was presented to the vicarage, when many improvements were further carried on.

But change and decay mark every generation in turn, and there is little else to record. The joyous genial days at Hursley Park had passed away, and the days of agricultural depression had set in, causing much trouble and anxiety, with alterations met with simple bravery and cheerfulness, according with the character that could bear adversity as nobly as prosperity.

The Rev. Thomas Mozley, in the somewhat discursive reminiscences of his latter years, declares that long before, he had seen one of Mr. Keble's curates in tears at the possibility of the repeal of the Corn-Laws causing Sir William Heathcote to put down one of his equipages. None of the curates could recollect the occasion, and certainly they lived to see what might have been more deplored, for at the end of Sir William's life there were actually only two little ponies in his stables.

Though never a very strong man, he preserved all his powers and his kind interest and thorough attention to whatever was brought before him until the end came, as to "a shock of corn in full season," and he was taken to his rest on the 17th of August 1881, leaving to all who knew him the precious recollection of emphatically "a just man" serving God in his generation.

That simple walking funeral, devoid of all pomp or show, but attended by at least 130 friends, did indeed show the esteem in which he was held as the moving spring of all the best undertakings for many years in the county; and may Hursley never forget that she is, as it were, consecrated by having been the home of two such men as John Keble and William Heathcote.

Still there are changes to record: Julian Bargus Yonge, after long inactivity from broken health, sold the property at Otterbourne to Major Robert Scarlett, and removed to London, where he died a few days later, in October 1891.

In 1892 Mr. Brock was invited to return to his house in Guernsey to become rector of the parish of St. Pierre au Bois in succession to his father and grandfather, and the Rev. Henry Albany Bowles became vicar of Otterbourne.

Other changes had in the meantime taken place. The Hursley estate, including not only the Manor of Merdon but recent purchases, had become much encumbered from the inevitable consequences of agricultural depression, and after the provision for the family had been made, of whom there were ten survivors besides Lady Heathcote, it proved that the only way of clearing off the various liabilities was to sell.

Lady Heathcote gave up her right to a life residence at Hursley Park, and after 170 years of possession, during which the family had well merited general affection and esteem, they resigned themselves to the sale of the greater part of the property. The Park, the advowson of the living, and the greater part of the parish, were bought by Joseph Baxendale, Esq., in 1888.

The more distant portions were more gradually disposed of, and recently the ground of Cranbury Common and Hiltingbury has risen in value from brick-making industries, and the convenience of Chandler's (or Chaloner's) Ford Station, and a large and rising colony, on the confines of five parishes, Otterbourne, North Stoneham, Ampfield, Hursley, and Baddesley. A school chapel was raised, but soon proved insufficient, and there is now a church. The place has been formed into a separate parish, Otterbourne resigning the hamlet of Fryern Hill; Ampfield, part of Fryern Hill and numerous houses built among the plantations of Cuckoo Bushes and Cranbury Common; and Stoneham, many houses placed among the trees of the former Fleming property.

And another change took place, Mr. Frewen Moor, from increasing age and loss of eyesight, resigned the pastoral charge he had so carefully and affectionately fulfilled for forty-four years, and was succeeded by the Rev. Vere Awdry.

RECTORS AND VICARS OF HURSLEY.

John de Raleghe, Rector d. 1279 Paganus de Lyskeret, Rector 1280-1296 John de Sta. Fide, Vicar Hugo de Welewyck, Rector 1296-1348 Henry de Lyskeret, Vicar Roger de la Vere, Vicar William de Ffarlee, Vicar 1348-1363 William de Middleton, Vicar 1363-1392 John Cove, Vicar 1392-1412 Walter Cowper Vicar 1412. John Langshaw, Vicar before 1447-1454 William Emery, Vicar 1454 John Lovyer, Vicar 1482 William Capell, Vicar about 1529 John Hynton, Vicar deprived 1565 Richard Foxe, Vicar 1565 William Symmons, Vicar 1581-1616 John Cole, Vicar 1616-1638 John Hardy, Vicar 1638 ejected 1645

(Several Puritan Intruders.)

Robert Maunder, 1660-1673 Thomas Pretty, 1673-1684 Matthew Leadbeater, 1684-1707 Edward Griffiths, 1707-1726 Richard Newcome, 1726-1747 William White, 1747-1780 Samuel Gauntlett, 1780-1804 Gilbert Heathcote, 1804-1829 Gilbert Wall Heathcote, 1829-1835 John Keble, 1836-1866 James Gavin Young, 1866



CHAPTER XIV—A SURVEY



It may be best to conclude with a sketch of the present appearance of the parishes (in 1898).

To begin at the west, where the border is on Romsey, Michelmersh and Farley, the Romsey road, formerly the direct road from Winchester to Salisbury, running through it, beside Ampfield Church and village. This is high ground, and Ampfield Wood extends along it to the borders of Hursley Park. It is chiefly of oak, fir, and beech, and on the southern side are the fine arcades of beechwood that Mr. Keble used to call Hursley Cathedral. From one point in the wood long sight can distinguish a sort of needle which is the spire of Salisbury Cathedral. The wood is very old, probably primeval, as it is guarded in the oldest notices of the Manor of Merdon, and it contains a flora of its own, in which may be mentioned that rare and beautiful Melittis Melissophyllum, bastard balm, like a purple and white archangel. The bilberry is plentiful there and all along the beautiful park-like road to Romsey and Salisbury. The church, raised above the wayside fountain, and the churchyard full of very beautiful varieties of pine, still nestles into the wood, and there is a charming view over the open country towards the south.

Farley Chamberlayne, which joins the wood on the other side, rising much higher, has a monument viewed from all the country round, erected by one of the St. John family to a horse which leapt down with him into a chalk-pit of considerable depth, and so alighted that neither horse nor man was hurt, and the horse won the cup at the races the year after, under the name of Beware Chalk-Pit. Parnholt wood, that clothes one side of the mount, is beloved by botanists for possessing tracts of lily of the valley, Convallaria majalis, and likewise Paris quadrifolia, a great rarity. The mount itself is bare chalk down, {154} but has a wonderful view over the whole undulating country—to the southward the beginning of forest land, and to the south-east, where the beechwoods of South Lynch begin to creep up the rapid slope of chalk, there is delightful hunting ground; for bee orchis (Ophrys apifera) swarm; careful search may discover the brown velvet blue-eyed fly, Ophrys muscifera, the quaint MAN and DWARF orchis can be found; butterfly or honey-suckle orchis, Habenaria, as we are constrained to term it, is frequent; and where the beech-trees begin there are those curious parasites which are the only plants they tolerate, the Listera Nidus-avis, birds'-nest orchis, the Monotropa Hypopitys, or yellow birds'-nest, the beautiful lily-like Epipactis Grandiflora; while helleborine and the curious and capricious tooth-wort, Spiraea Filipendula or drop-wort, Gentiana Amarella, and other distinctive chalk-down plants are found.

On the southern side of Ampfield lies the parish of North Baddesley, which preserves the curious old Hampshire village church with a timber bell turret. This side is where there once stood a Gospel oak, marking the place where the Gospel was read, when the bounds of the Manor of Merdon were trod at Rogation-tide. The whole tract is an extension of the New Forest land, almost all heather and bog, undulating and, in the drier spots, growing bushes of the glistening holly. It is forest scenery without the trees, excepting the plantations of fir made by a former generation, but presenting grand golden fields of gorse in the spring, and of red and purple heather in early autumn; and whereas the northern side of Hursley gives the distinctive flora of dry chalk, here we have the growth of the black peaty bog, the great broom-rape, brown and leafless, growing on the roots of the gorse; the curious dodder spreading a tangled red skein of thread over it gemmed with little round white balls, the rare marsh cinquefoil, the brilliant yellow asphodel, the delicate, exquisite, bog pimpernel, the blue skull-cap, the two weird and curious sun-dews, and even in former times the beautiful dark blue Gentiana Pneumonanthe, as well as the two pinguiculas—Vulgaris, like a violet, and the rarer Lusitanica.

But alas! the giant called "High Farming" is an enemy to the botanists, and had starved out many of the choicest of these, even before the building of villas at Chandler's Ford put a total end to most of them.

Hursley Park touches on one side the forest land of Ampfield Wood, and on the other the chalk of the South Downs, and it shows its length of having been reclaimed in the well-kept trees with their straight lines finishing their foliage beneath, due to the feeding of deer and cattle. Its chief beauty is when the thorns are like masses of snow. Moreover, there grows up from the moat at Merdon, over the back of the remains of the gateway, a traveller's joy with an enormous trunk that must be of many years' duration. Merdon Castle is just where the chalk begins, and from thence, running down to the house itself, there is a broad level space of deer park clear of trees, and making a fit setting to the early Georgian red brick house with the gardens on the other side, containing several fine old lime- trees. On all the sides, except towards Ampfield, the ground falls away, and the village of well-kept, picturesque cottages lies in the valley beneath the park, the tall white spire of the church making a beautiful object looking along the walnut avenue leading from the gardens.

The lime-trees enclose the church on three sides most fitly, except in the eyes of an old woman, some sixty years ago, who objected to worshipping in a grove.

At a short distance eastward of the churchyard begin the two roads, both leading to Otterbourne; the northern one, part of which still bears the name of King's Lane, is said to have been the way taken by Purkis's cart when bringing William Rufus's body to Winchester.

The southern road, which is part of the Romsey and Southampton highway, soon rises into the height of Ladwell Hill, fields with very fine elms bordering it on the west, and the copse of Mr. Keble's petition on the east. At the gate of the wood is a patch of the rare Geranium Phaeun, the dusky crane's-bill, but whether wild, or a stray from a disused garden, is doubtful.

After another dip, the road to Otterbourne leaves the main one, and skirts Cranbury Park, and has on the opposite side the once open country, since planted first with trees and later with houses, leading to Chandler's Ford. The very pretty and uncommon Linaria repens, a toad flax, white and striped with purple, is a speciality that it is hoped may not be smothered with houses and gardens. A lane, called even in 1588 Mallibar, runs southward over the heath, and emerges into the Southampton road. It is a grand place for heath, ferns, and broom-rape, with daffodils in a field at the end. There are remains of a farm-yard and orchard, once apparently rented by Mr. Coram of Cranbury.

Cranbury Park is on a hill, intersected by various springs, and where the peaty ground soon gives way to gravel. The house, a large red brick one, built round a court, so that it looks low in proportion to its width, is on the level ground at the top, flat as it fronts to the south, but in the rear descending rapidly. In fact, on that side the grounds have the air of cresting the hill, and there is a group of exceedingly tall pine-trees which are a land-mark of the country on all sides, though the tallest of them was blown down a few years ago. Near them is one of the old-fashioned orangeries, with a great deal of wall and very little glass, and near it stands the sundial of Newtonian fame.

From the ridge where the pines stand the ground descends through very steep fields belonging to the Home Farm at Longmore to King's Lane, where Hursley parish touches upon Compton, at the hamlet of Silkstede, which is reported to have been a priory, and has a fine old barn and a dell in the orchard full of snowdrops. No mention of it is in Dugdale's Monasticon, and it was probably only a grange; but it still owns some very fine old trees, the bordering copses are full of violets, and the rare Lathyrus Nissolia has been found there.

Returning to the open park in front of Cranbury, there occurs that fitfully blooming plant, lady's-tresses—Neottia Spiralis autumnalis- -and a profusion of brown-winged orchis and cowslips. All the slopes are covered with copsewood, much of it oak, the tints of which are lovely shades of green in spring and golden-brown in early autumn. The whole is a place remarkable for masses of blossom. There are giant garlands of white wild cherry above in spring, and equally white anemone below; by and by an acre of primroses growing close together, not large, but wonderfully thick, a golden river of king- cup between banks of dog's mercury, later on whole glades of wild hyacinth, producing a curious effect of blue beneath the budding yellow green of the young birches with silver stems. Sheets of the scarlet sorrel by and by appear, and foxgloves of all sizes troop in the woods, and are succeeded by the rose bay willow herb, and lastly come perfect clouds of the little devils'-bit scabious. Ferns adorn the watery glens, and bracken spreads on the undulating ground in wild beauty of form, here and there enhanced by a bright faded tint of gold.

At the bottom of the hill, close to Otterbourne Church, the gravel has given place to clay. On the side of the hill, a rough hedge divides the private ground of the copse from Otterbourne Common and Hill, which is crossed by the old high road from London to Southampton, the very steep hill having had a cutting made through it. The Cranbury side of the road has the village cricket ground on it, though burrowed under by the concentric brick-work circles of the Southampton Company's water works, which are entered by a little staircase tower, cemented over so as to be rather ornamental than otherwise. Beside it, there is a beautiful view of a delightful home landscape; stretching out on the south lie woods and low hills to the gleam of Southampton Water, the smoke of the steamers, and even the gray hills of the Isle of Wight. On the other side, beyond the rich water meadows of the Itchen valley, may be seen the woods of Colden Common rising into Concord Hill, and beyond them the view is closed by the broken outline of Longwood Warren. While more to the north there is visible the round smooth outline of "the beech-crowned steep" of St. Catherine's Hill. It is a charming prospect, especially on a day of sunshine and clouds, making shadows chase one another over the distance. Nor, except for a white thatched cottage and an extensive gravel-pit by the road, have the native charms of the hill been much disturbed; and gorse, heather, and honeysuckle flourish till, where the clay begins, there is a grassy slope bearing a few elms and horse-chestnuts. Perhaps loaded waggons drop some of their seeds, for on those cuttings through the gravel on the road- side have sprung up the dainty little yellow stonecrop, Sedum acre, and the Stork's bill, Erodium moschatum. These are plentifully spread over the cutting; but the Trifolium arvense, which came for a few years, seems to have vanished again.

On the eastern side of the road lies the village green. The old cottages used to stand round in an irregular amphitheatre, some with poplars before them, and the name of Maypole-field (now allotments) testifies to there having been sports there before the memory of the present man. The arrangements have been broken by modern building, but "right of common" still protects the green expanse for donkeys and children, including the more youthful cricketers, not yet promoted to matches.

From the top of the hill extends a large space of woodland known as Otterbourne Park. The higher part is full of a growth of beautiful ling, in delicate purple spikes, almost as tall as the hazel and mountain ash are allowed to grow. On summer evenings it is a place in which to hear the nightingale, and later to see the glow-worm, and listen to the purring of the nightjar. It is a very ancient wood, part of the original grant of St. Magdalen College, and bears plenty of the yellow cow-wheat which Kingsley holds as the mark of primeval waste-land; but it is not exceptional in its other plants, except that a spring, half-way down, has the rare Viola palustris around it. The whole tract remained untouched till a pleasant residence called the Grange was taken out of it to the south, at a ground rent, by Rowland Jones Bateman, Esq., whose beneficent kindness and excellent religious influence told on all the neighbourhood, and especially on the hamlet of Allbrook, till his death in 1897.

The parish here borders on Bishopstoke, and the Grange commands a pleasant view over the water meadows, and up the opposite Bishopstoke Hill. Otterbourne Park reaches down to where the meadows begin along the course of the Itchen.

In these meadows, the will-of-the-wisp has undoubtedly been seen, as well as in a wet field in the central part of the parish; but it is a disappointing phenomenon—nothing but a misty, pale bluish light, rather like the reality of a comet's tail, and if "he" was by "Friar's Lantern led," "he" must have had a strong imagination.

Probably drainage, sawmills, and brick-making have exorcised Jack-o'- Lantern, for Allbrook, from a hamlet of four cottages, has grown up into a considerable village, with a school-chapel of its own, and a large population. The two farms called Hams and Boyatt border it on the southern or Bishopstoke side, and on the northern it extends to Highbridge (apparently so called from the lowness of the bridge), where is another small hamlet, half Otterbourne half Twyford; and there was for many years a Roman Catholic chapel attached to a large cottage, and distinguished by a cross. It was endowed, but nearly all the flock having faded away, the endowment was transferred to Eastleigh, and it is now inhabited by a market gardener with numerous glass houses.

It is the real Itchen that is crossed at Highbridge. The canal goes through Allbrook, but both serve the purpose of irrigation, and a network of ditches crosses the meadows. Both river and canal, too, are excellent for fishermen, who in the season can find

here and there a lusty trout, And here and there a grayling

in the clear stream, which now and then an otter inhabits, soon to serve as sport for his many enemies.

Smooth and level, the river is still an unfailing source of enjoyment in the walks along the towing path, when moor-hens are swimming, and dipping on a glimpse of the spectator; when fish are rising, or sometimes taking a sudden "header" into the air and going down with a splash; when the water-vole rushes for his hole with head just above the water; when a blue flash of kingfisher darts by, and the deep blue or green dragon-flies sit on the sedges, or perhaps a tiny May- fly sits on a rail to shake off its last garment, and come forth a snow-white fairy thing with three long whisks at the tail.

The REAL Itchen is the boundary, and beyond lies Brambridge. But on coming to the bridge over the canal, the road leads westward, towards Otterbourne Hill. First it skirts a stream, a tributary to the Itchen, and goes between meadows till the old church is reached, now only a chancel in the midst of old headstones, and still bordered with trees on the bank between it and the stream. There are square brick monuments covered with stone slabs. In the interstices there used to be a great deal of Adiantum nigrum—black maidenhair, but it has disappeared.

The flowers are quite different from those of the peaty marshes on the opposite side of the district, belonging to an alluvial soil, washed down from the chalk hills. The great reed-mace adorns the Itchen, and going along the disused towing path of the canal there is to be found abundance of the black and golden spikes of the sedge, and the curious balls of the bur-reed, very like the horrid German weapon called a morning star. Also meadow-sweet, meadow-rue, and comfrey of every shade of purple, the water avens and forget-me-not, also that loveliest plant the bog-bean, with trefoil leaves and feathery blossoms. Orchis latifolia is in plenty, and also Orchis incarnata, sometimes called the Romsey orchis. Of late years the mimulus has gilded the bank of one of the ditches. Is it compensation for the Pinguicula vulgaris, which has been drained away, or the mountain pink at Highbridge, which I suspect some gardener of appropriating? Higher up the course of the river, Orchis conopsea, long-spurred and very sweet, the compact Orchis pyramidalis, and the rare Epipactis palustris are to be found, as well as Campanula Glomerata, and crow garlic, in an old chalk-pit nearly destroyed by the railway and the water works.

Otterbourne Farm bounds the churchyard on the west side, and below, on either side of a low bridge, stand two fine yew trees where boys in the old church days used to climb and devour the waxen berries with impunity. Meadows lie on each side the road, and on the left is a short lane, leading up to the old manor house, the Moat-house but it is no longer even a farm-house—the moat is choked with mud and reeds, and only grows fine forget-me-nots, and the curious panel picture of a battle, apparently between Turks and Austrians, has been removed. The fields beyond, bordering on Otterbourne Park, are the best for cowslips in the parish.

Returning into the road, whose proper name is Kiln Lane, the way leads between two fields, oddly enough called Courtiers, rising a little, and with a view of Otterbourne Hill, the east side of which, below the slope of Otterbourne Park, has been laid out in allotments for more than fifty years, at first by Mr. Yonge, though it has now been taken in hand by the Parish Council, and it makes a pleasant picture of stripes of various shades of green and brown with people working in them. The hedge sweeps round in a curve, leaving a space where stands the Pound, still sometimes used for straying cattle. The Stocks were once there, but never used in the memory of man.

The valley is of clay, strong yellow clay favourable to oaks, though too many have been cut down, whenever they came to a good size in the hedges; but in the grounds of Otterbourne House, where they have been undisturbed for at least eighty years, there are a number of very handsome well-grown trees; and near them is Dell Copse, dug out for the bricks for the "King's House," and the home of countless daffodils. Half way up the hill is a small spring, where the water rises so as to make little jets of sand. It flows down in a gutter to the green at the opening of Kiln Lane, around the Pound, and here spreads into a pool, called the Dip Hole, the resort of cows from the common, and long of village women, as the blue galt below the yellow clay never affords good water, but this has been remedied by water works.

At this spot Kiln Lane opens into the high-road, and there is a broad space of green at nearly the bottom of the hill, before the main body of the village begins. Every line in the place is a curve-hedges, roads, gardens and all, and this gives the view a peculiar grace, so that one of the old men used to say he knew not where to find a better or prettier view than looking down into the village from the hill, and on far beyond to Owslebury, Crowd Hill, and Longwood Warren, a lovely home view.

The church stands on the hillside just where the upward road to Cranbury begins to branch off. The churchyard is full of crosses, a large granite cross in memory of John Keble as rector in the midst, and there is a splendid Wellingtonia, or more properly a Sequoia, now about fifty years old, and overtopping the bell-turret. And the outside space on this side is scattered with horse chestnuts and elms.

Below are the schools, and the irregular curving street of houses, thatched, tiled, or slated, in gardens or close to the road. Here stands Otterbourne House, and, after two large fields, more cottages, and the vicarage, like the schools, with the fancy brick chimneys moulded at Hursley.

Not far beyond, the little stream that had crossed the meadows from the church is spanned by another bridge, belonging to the high-road from Winchester. Thence may be seen the source of the stream, in Pool Hole, said to be fed from Merdon well, and now forced to spread into a bed of watercresses.

And here begins Compton, Silkstede is in sight, and the round of the parishes is completed with King's Lane, turning to the west from the high road to Winchester.



CHAPTER XV—WORDS AND PHRASES



Before entirely quitting the parish, a few of the older words and forms of expression may be recorded, chiefly as remembered from the older generation, for "the schoolmaster" and the influx of new inhabitants have changed much that was characteristic of the genuine West Saxon. Nor, indeed, was there any very pronounced dialect, like a separate language. The speech is slow, and with a tendency to make o like aa, as Titus Oates does in Peveril of the Peak. An Otterbourne man going into Devonshire was told, "My son, you speak French." No one ever showed the true Hampshire south-country speech and turn of expression so well as Lady Verney in her Lettice Lisle, and she has truly Hampshire characters too, such as could once easily be matched in these villages.

The words and phrases here set down are only what can be vouched for by those who have grown up to them

WORDS

Caddle, untidy condition. "In he comes when I'm all of a caddle." To stabble, to walk about aimlessly, or in the wet. "Now, Miss, don't you come stabbling in and out when I am scouring." Or, "I can't come stabbling down that there dirty lane, or I should be all of a muck." Want, mole. Chiselbob, woodlouse; also called a cud-worm, and, rolled in a pill, put down the throat of a cow to promote the restoration of her cud, which she was supposed to have lost. Gowk, cuckoo. Fuzz-Buzz, traveller's joy. Palmer, caterpillar. Dish-washer, water-wagtail. Chink, chaffinch. Long-tailed caper, long-tailed tit. Yaffil, green woodpecker. "The yaffil laughed loud."—See Peacock at Home. Smellfox, anemone. Dead men's fingers, orchis. Granny's night-cap, water avens. Jacob's ladder, Solomon's seal. Lady's slipper, Prunella vulgaris. Poppy, foxglove. To routle, to rummage (like a pig in straw). To terrify, to worry or disturb. "Poor old man, the children did terrify him so, he is gone into the Union." Wind-list, white streak of faint cloud across a blue sky, showing the direction of the wind. Shuffler, man employed about a farmyard. Randy go, uproar. "I could not sleep for that there randy go they was making." Pook, a haycock. All of a pummy, all of a moulter, because it was so very brow, describing the condition of a tree, which shattered as it fell because it was brow, i.e. brittle. Leer, empty, generally said of hunger.—See German. Hulls, chaff. The chaff of oats; used to be in favour for stuffing mattresses. Heft, Weight. To huck, to push or pull out. Scotch (howk). Stook, the foundation of a bee hive. Pe-art, bright, lively, the original word bearht for both bright and pert. Loo (or lee), sheltered. Steady, slow. "She is so steady I can't do nothing with her." Kickety, said of a one-sided wheel-barrow that kicked up (but this may have been invented for the nonce). Pecty, covered with little spots of decay. Fecty, defective throughout—both used in describing apples or potatoes. Hedge-picks, shoes. Hags or aggarts, haws. Rauch, smoke (comp. German and Scotch). Pond-keeper, dragon-fly. Stupid, ill-conditioned. To plim, to swell, as bacon boiled. To side up, to put tidy. Logie, poorly, out-of-sorts.

VILLAGE SPECIFICS.

Cure for Epilepsy

To wear round the neck a bag with a hair from the cross on a he- donkey.

Or,

To wear a ring made of sixpences begged from six young women who married without change of name.

Cure for Whooping Cough

An infusion of mouse ear hawkweed (Hieracium Pilosella), flavoured with thyme and honey. This is really effective, like other "yarbs" that used to be in vogue.

Cure for Shingles

Grease off church bells.

For Sore Throat

Rasher of fat bacon fastened round the neck.

For Ague

To be taken to the top of a steep place, then violently pushed down.

Or,

To have gunpowder in bags round the wrists set on fire.

Powdered chaney (china), a general specific.

PHRASES

Singing psalms to a dead horse, exhorting a stolid subject.

Surplice, smock-frock.

"Ah! sir, the white surplice covers a great deal of dirt"—said by a tidy woman of her old father.

"And what be I to pay you?"

"What the Irishman shot at," i.e. nothing—conversation overheard between an old labourer and his old friend, the thatcher, who had been mending his roof.

"Well, dame, how d'ye fight it out?"—salutation overheard.

CURATE. Have you heard the nightingale yet?

BOY. Please, sir, I don't know how he hollers.

Everything hollers, from a church bell to a mouse in a trap.

A tenth child, if all the former ones are living, is baptized with a sprig of myrtle in his cap, and the clergyman was supposed to charge himself with his education.

If possible, a baby was short-coated on Good Friday, to ensure not catching cold.

The old custom (now gone out) was that farmers should send their men to church on Good Friday. They used all to appear in their rough dirty smock frocks and go back to work again. Some (of whom it would never have been expected) would fast all day.

The 29th of May is still called Shick-shack day—why has never been discovered. There must have been some observance earlier than the Restoration, though oak-apples are still worn on that day, and with their oak sprays are called Shick-shack.

On St. Clement's Day, the 23rd of November, explosions of gunpowder are made on country blacksmiths' anvils. It is viewed as the blacksmiths' holiday. The accepted legend is that St. Clement was drowned with an anchor hung to his neck, and that his body was found in a submarine temple, from which the sea receded every seven years for the benefit of pilgrims. Thus he became the patron of anchor forgers, and thence of smiths in general. Charles Dickens, in Great Expectations describes an Essex blacksmith as working to a chant, the refrain of which was "Old Clem." I have heard the explosions at Hursley before 1860, but more modern blacksmiths despise the custom. At Twyford, however, the festival is kept, and at the dinner a story is read that after the Temple was finished, Solomon feasted all the artificers except the blacksmiths, but they appeared, and pointed out all that they had done in the way of necessary work, on which they were included with high honour.

St. Thomas's Day, 21st December, is still at Otterbourne held as the day for "gooding," when each poor house-mother can demand sixpence from the well-to-do towards her Christmas dinner.

Christmas mummers still perambulate the villages, somewhat uncertainly, as their performance depends on the lads willing to undertake it, and the willingness of some woman to undertake the bedizening of them with strips of ribbon or coloured paper; and, moreover, political allusions are sometimes introduced which spoil the simplicity. The helmets are generally made of wallpaper, in a shape like auto-da-fe caps, with long strips hanging over so as to conceal the face, and over the shirts are sewn streamers.

Thus tramp seven or eight lads, and stand drawn up in a row, when the foremost advances with, at the top of his hoarse voice:

Room, room, brave gallants, room, I'm just come to show you some merry sport and game, To help pass away This cold winter day. Old activity, new activity, such activity As never was seen before, And perhaps never will be seen no more.

(Alas! too probably. Thanks to the schoolmaster abroad.)

Then either he or some other, equipped with a little imitation snow, paces about announcing himself:

Here comes I, Old Father Christmas, Christmas, Christmas, Welcome or welcome not, I hope old Father Christmas Will never be forgot. All in this room, there shall be shown The dreadfullest battle that ever was known. So walk in, St. George, with thy free heart And see whether thou canst claim peace for thine own part.

So far from "claiming peace," St. George waves (or ought to wave) his wooden sword, as he clumps forth, exclaiming:

In comes I, St. George, St. George, that man of courage bold, With my broad sword and spear I won the crown of gold, I fought that fiery dragon, And drove him to the slaughter, And by that means I won The King of Egypt's daughter. Therefore, if any man dare enter this door I'll hack him small as dust, And after send him to the cook's shop To be made into mince-pie crust!

On this defiance another figure appears:

Here comes I, the Turkish knight Just come from Turkey land to fight; I'll fight thee, St. George, St. George, thou man of courage bold, If thy blood be too hot, I'll quickly make it cold.

To which St. George responds, in the tone in which he would address a cart-horse:

"Wo ho! My little fellow, thou talk'st very bold, Just like the little Turks, as I have been told, Therefore, thou Turkish knight, Pull out thy sword and fight, Pull out thy purse and pay, I'll have satisfaction, or thou guest away.

Turkish Knight.

Satisfaction, no satisfaction at all, My head is made of iron, my body lined with steel, I'll battle thee, to see which on the ground shall fall.

The two wooden swords clatter together till the Turkish knight falls, all doubled up, even his sword, with due regard to his finery; and St. George is so much shocked that he marches round, lamenting:

O only behold what I have been and done, Cut and slain my brother, just the evening sun.

Then, bethinking himself, he exclaims:

I have a little bottle, called elecampane, If the man is alive, let him rise and fight again.

The application of the elecampane so far restores the Turkish knight that he partly rises, entreating:

O pardon me, St. George, O pardon me, I crave, O pardon me this once, and I will be thy slave.

Very inconsistently with his late remorse, St. George replies -

I never will pardon a Turkish knight, Therefore arise, and try thy might.

The combat is renewed, and the Turkish knight falls prostrate, on which the Foreign King comes forward, shouting:

St. George, St. George, what hast thou done, For thou hast slain mine only son!

But, after marching round the fallen hero, he cries:

Is there a doctor to be found, That can cure this man lies bleeding on the ground?

In response, the doctor appears:

O yes, there is a doctor to be found, That can cure this man lies bleeding on the ground.

The anxious father asks:

Doctor, doctor, what is thy fee?

The doctor replies:

Ten guineas is my fee, But ten pounds I'll take of thee.

The king answers:

"Take it, doctor, but what canst thou cure?"

The doctor's pretensions are high, for he says:

I can cure the ague, palsy, and the gout, And that's a roving pain that goes within and out; A broken leg or arm, I soon can cure the pain, And if thou break'st thy neck, I'll stoutly set it again. Bring me an old woman of fourscore years and ten, Without a tooth in her head, I'll bring her young again.

The king observes:

"Thou be'st a noble doctor if that's all true thou be'st talking about."

And the doctor, taking to prose, replies:

"I'm not like those little mountebank doctors that go about the streets, and say this, that, and the other, and tell you as many lies in one half-hour as you would find in seven years; but what I does, I does clean before your eyes, and ladies and gentlemen, if you won't believe your own eyes, 'tis a very hard case."

The king agreeing that it is, the doctor goes to the patient, saying:

"I have a little bottle that I call golden foster drops. One drop on the root of this man's tongue and another on his crown, will strike the heat through his body, and raise him off the ground."

Accordingly the Turkish knight slowly rises and decamps, St. George exclaiming:

"Arise, arise, thou cowardly dog, and see how uprightly thou can'st stand. Go home into your own country and tell them what old England has done for you, and how they'll fight a thousand better men than you.

This last speech may have been added after the Crimean War, as the drama was copied out in 1857; but the staple of it was known long before, though with variations, in different villages, and it always concludes with little Johnny Jack, the smallest of the troup, with a bundle of dolls on his back, going round with a jingling money-box, saying:

Here comes I, little Johnny Jack, Wife and family at my back, My family's large though I am small, And so a little helps us all. Roast beef, plum pudding, strong beer and mince-pies, Who loves that better than Father Christmas or I? One mug of Christmas ale soon will make us merry and sing; Some money in our pockets will be a very fine thing. So, ladies and gentlemen, all at your ease, Give the Christmas boys just what you please.

Before Christmas carols had to be reformed and regulated lest they should be a mere occasion of profanity and rudeness, that curious one of Dives and Lazarus was occasionally heard, of which two lines could never be forgotten -

He had no strength to drive them 'way, And so they licked his sores.

And when Lazarus afterwards sees "Divers" "sitting on a serpent's knee."

May Day too survived in a feeble state, with the little voices singing:

April's gone! May's come! Come and see our garland.

Mr. Keble improved the song into:

April's gone, the king of showers, May is come, the queen of flowers, Give me something, gentles dear, For a blessing on the year. For my garland give, I pray, Words and smiles of cheerful May; Birds of spring, to you we come, Let us pick a little crumb. In the dew of the morning we gathered our flowers From the woodlands and meadows and garden bowers, And now we have twisted our garland so gay, We are come here to wish you a happy May Day.

We cannot but here add an outline of a village character from Old Times at Otterbourne:-

Mr. William Stainer was a baker. His bread was excellent, and he was also noted for what were called Otterbourne buns, the art of making which seems to have gone with him. They were small fair-complexioned buns, which stuck together in parties of three, and when soaked, expanded to twice or three times their former size. He used to send them once or twice a week to Winchester. But though baking was his profession, he did much besides. He was a real old-fashioned herbalist, and had a curious book on the virtues of plants, and he made decoctions of many kinds, which he administered to those in want of medicine. Before the Poor Law provided Union doctors, medical advice, except at the hospital, was almost out of reach of the poor. Mr. and Mrs. Yonge, like almost all other beneficent gentlefolks in villages, kept a medicine chest and book, and doctored such cases as they could venture on, and Mr. Stainer was in great favour as a practitioner, as many of our elder people can remember. He was exceedingly charitable and kind, and ready to give his help so far as he could. He was a great lover of flowers, and had contrived a sort of little greenhouse over the great oven at the back of his house, and there he used to bring up lovely geraniums and other flowers, which he sometimes sold. He was a deeply religious and devout man, and during an illness of the clerk took his place in Church, which was more important when there was no choir and the singers sat in the gallery. He was very happy in this office, moving about on felt shoes that he might make no noise, and most reverently keeping the Church clean, and watching over it in every way. He also continued in the post of schoolmaster, which at first he had only taken temporarily, and quaintly managing it. He was found setting as a copy "A blind man's wife needs no paint," which he defended as "Proverbs, sir, Proverbs." Giving up part of his business to his nephew, he still sat up at night baking, for the nephew, he said, was only in the A B C book of baking, and he also had other troubles: there was insanity in his family, and he was much harassed. His kindness and simplicity were sometimes abused. He never had the heart to refuse to lend money, or to deny bread on credit to hopeless debtors; and altogether debts, distress, baking, and watching his sisters all night, and school keeping all day, were too much for him. The first hint of an examination of his school completed the mischief and he died insane, drowning himself in the canal. It is a sad story, but many of us will remember with affectionate regard the good, kind, quaint, and most excellent little man.

A few lines, half parody, half original, may be added as picturing the old aspect of Otterbourne, about 1830:-

OLD REMEMBRANCES

I remember, I remember, Old times at Otterbourne, Before the building of the Church, And when smock frocks were worn!

I remember, I remember, When railroads there were none, When by stage coach at early dawn The journey was begun.

And through the turnpike roads till eve Trotted the horses four, With inside passengers and out They carried near a score.

"Red Rover" and the "Telegraph," We knew them all by name, And Mason's and the Oxford coach, Full thirty of them came.

The coachman wore his many capes, The guard his bugle blew; The horses were a gallant sight, Dashing upon our view.

I remember, I remember, The posting days of old; The yellow chariot lined with blue And lace of colour gold.

The post-boys' jackets blue or buff, The inns upon the road; The hills up which we used to walk To lighten thus the load.

The rattling up before the inn, The horses led away, The post-boy as he touched his hat And came to ask his pay.

The perch aloft upon the box, Delightful for the view; The turnpike gates whose keepers stood Demanding each his due.

I remember, I remember, When ships were beauteous things, The floating castles of the deep Borne upon snow-white wings;

Ere iron-dads and turret ships, Ugly as evil dream, Became the hideous progeny Of iron and of steam.

You crossed the Itchen ferry All in an open boat, Now, on a panting hissing bridge You scarcely seem afloat.

Southampton docks were sheets of mud, Grim colliers at the quay. No tramway, and no slender pier To stretch into the sea.

I remember, I remember, Long years ere Rowland Hill, When letters covered quarto sheets Writ with a grey goose quill;

Both hard to fold and hard to read, Crossed to the scarlet seal; Hardest of all to pay for, ere Their news they might reveal.

No stamp with royal head was there, But eightpence was the sum For every letter, all alike, That did from London come!

I remember, I remember, The mowing of the hay; Scythes sweeping through the heavy grass At breaking of the day.

The haymakers in merry ranks Tossing the swathes so sweet, The haycocks tanning olive-brown In glowing summer heat.

The reapers 'mid the ruddy wheat, The thumping of the flail, The winnowing within the barn By whirling round a sail.

Long ere the whirr, and buzz, and rush Became a harvest sound, Or monsters trailed their tails of spikes, Or ploughed the fallow ground.

Our sparks flew from the flint and steel, No lucifers were known, Snuffers with tallow candles came To prune the wick o'ergrown.

Hands did the work of engines then, But now some new machine Must hatch the eggs, and sew the seams, And make the cakes, I ween.

I remember, I remember, The homely village school, The dame with spelling book and rod, The sceptre of her rule.

A black silk bonnet on her head, Buff kerchief on her neck, With spectacles upon her nose, And apron of blue check.

Ah, then were no inspection days, No standards then were known, Children could freely make dirt pies, And learning let alone!

Those Sundays I remember too, When Service there was one; For living in the parish then Of parsons there were none.

And oh, I can recall to mind, The Church and every pew; William and Mary's royal arms Hung up in fullest view.

The lion smiling, with his tongue Like a pug dog's hung out; The unicorn with twisted horn, Brooding upon his rout.

Exalted in the gallery high The tuneful village choir, With flute, bassoon, and clarionet, Their notes rose high and higher.

They shewed the number of the Psalm In white upon a slate, And many a time the last lines sung Of Brady and of Tate.

While far below upon the floor Along the narrow aisle, The children on their benches sat Arranged in single file.

And there the clerk would stump along And strike with echoing blow Each idle guilty little head That chattered loud or low.

Ah! I remember many things, Old, middle-aged, and new; Is the new better than the old, More bright, more wise, more true?

The old must ever pass away, The new must still come in; When these new things are old to you Be they unstained by sin.

So will their memory be sweet, A treasury of bliss To be borne with us in the days When we their presence miss.

Trifles connected with the love Of many a vanished friend Will thrill the heart and wake the sense, For memory has no end!



CHAPTER XVI—NATURAL HISTORY



Or animal life, though abundant, there is little or nothing special to record, besides the list of birds.

Polecats and martens only exist in the old rating book, but weasels and stoats remain, as well as a profusion of their prey—hares and rabbits. Squirrels haunt the trees, and otters are occasionally found in the river. Trout, grayling, now and then a pike, as well as the smaller fry of minnows and sticklebacks, are of course found in the streams. Eels used to be caught there on the moonlight nights by old labourers with a taste for sport, and the quaint little river cray-fish may be picked out of the banks of the "water-carriages."

Toads and frogs are a matter of course. Sometimes a procession of tiny, but perfectly formed "Charley Frogs," as the village boys call them, just emerged from their tadpole state, may be seen making their way up from their native pools.

The pretty crested newt, dark brown and orange, with a gold crest along its back like an iguana, is found in shallow ponds, also the smooth newt. These efts, or evvets, as the people call them, are regarded with horror by the peasantry. The children speak of having seen one as if it were a crocodile; and an abscess in the arm has been ascribed to having picked up an "evvet in a bundle of grass."

The slow-worm, in silvery coat, is too often slaughtered as a snake. Vipers come to light in the woods, also the harmless brown snake. One of these has been seen swimming across a pond, his head just out of the water, another climbing an oak tree, and one, upon the lawn, was induced to disgorge a frog, which gathered up its legs and hopped away as if nothing had happened.

Of rats and mice and such small deer there are only too many, though it is worth while to watch rats at play round a hay-rick on Sunday evenings, when they know they will not be persecuted, and sit up like little kangaroos. The vole, which is not a rat, is a goodly sight, and the smooth round dormouse (or sleep-mouse, as the children call it) is a favourite gift imprisoned in an old tea-pot.

The beautiful nest of a field-mouse has been found in a cypress's thick foliage, and dead shrews bestrew the paths; though the magic effects of having a "sherry mouse" die in one's hand, and thus being enabled to stroke cattle and cure them, have never been experienced.

The anodon or fresh water mussel used to be found in Fisher's Pond on Colden Common, bordering on Otterbourne, and the green banks were strewn with shells left by the herons, but the pond is fast drying up and the herons have been driven away by guns.

The delicate paludina, of brown, horn-coloured, gracefully-formed shell, creeps on the water weeds, and hosts of snails may be studied.

Of insects less can be said here, but it is worth noting that one live purple emperor has been captured in Ampfield wood, two dead dilapidated ones picked up at Otterbourne.

The forest fly, so called, does not often come here; but it is observable that while strange horses are maddened by it, the native ones do not seem disturbed, knowing that it only creeps and does not bite. It is small and brown, not so formidable looking as the large fly, popularly called a stout, as big as a hornet, which lays eggs under the skin of cows.

But with the blue, green, and orange dragonflies of summer, this list must conclude, and turn to the birds and botany of the place, mostly well known, and verified by Mr. Townsend's Flora of Hampshire.

BIRDS

THE KITE (Milvus ictinus).—Sometimes hovering over heathlands or farmyards, but not very common.

SPARROW-HAWK (Accipiter fringillarius).—Taken in a trap set for rats at Otterbourne House.

PEREGRINE FALCON (Falco peregrinus), Hursley, 1857.—As a pair for many years had a nest on Salisbury spire, this one may have flown thus far.

KESTREL (Falco tinnunculus)—Otterbourne, 1856.

SHORT-EARED OWL (Otus brachyotus).—Baddesley Common, 5th March 1861.

WHITE OWL (Strix flammea).—Nested in a barn, another year in a pigeon-loft, and again in an old tub at Otterbourne. To be seen skimming softly along on summer evenings.

BROWN OWL (Ulula stridula).—Glides over the fields like a huge moth, and on moonlight nights in August may be heard the curious hunting note. As the eggs are hatched, not all at once, but in succession, a family taken out of a loft and put into a sea-kale pot were of various ages, the eldest nearly fledged, standing up as if to guard the nest, the second hissing and snapping, as if a naughty boy, and two downy infants who died. One brown owl was kept tame, and lived 14 years. The village people call this bird Screech Owl, and after a sudden death always mention having heard it.

CHIMNEY SWALLOW (Hirundo rustica).—They chase the flies under the bridges on the Itchen, and display their red throats.

HOUSE-MARTIN (Hirundo urbica).—Twittering everywhere 'neath the straw-built shed.

SAND-MARTIN (Hirundo riparia).—Swarms sit in rows along the electric wires, and bore deeply into every sand-pit.

SWIFT (Cypselus murarius).—First to come and first to go. Their peculiar screech and floating flight are one of the charms of the summer evenings.

NIGHTJAR (Caprimulgus europaeus).—All through the twilight of the long days his purr-purr comes down from the heathery summit of Otterbourne Hill, where he earns his other name of Fern Owl, and may be seen flitting on silent wing in search of moths.

KINGFISHER (Alcedo ispida).—This beautiful creature darts out of the reeds bordering the Itchen, and it used to be at Chandler's Ford before the place was so populated. It seems also to haunt ponds or marshy places in woods, for a young full-fledged one was brought into Otterbourne House by a cat, alive and apparently unhurt. Another took a fancy to the gold-fish in a stone basin at Cranbury, and was shot, as the poor fish could not escape.

SPOTTED FLYCATCHER (Muscicapa grisola).—Late in summer these dainty little birds come whisking about the garden, perching on a rail, darting off after a fly, returning to the same post, or else feeding their young in nests on the side of the house. A pair built in 1897 in a flower-pot close to the window of Otterbourne House.

BUTCHER-BIRD (Lanius collurio).—Said to have been seen at Otterbourne. A slug has been found impaled on a thorn, but whether this was the shrike's larder, or as a charm for removing warts, is uncertain.

MISSEL-THRUSH (Merula viscivora).—This handsome bird is frequent, and commonly called House Screech. A story told by Warden Barter may be worth preserving. A pair of Missel Thrush seeing a peacock too near their nest, charged full at him, and actually knocked him down.

SONG-THRUSH (Merula musica).—Happily everywhere warbling on warm days in autumn and winter with a sweet, powerful song, some notes more liquid than even the nightingale's. The shells of the snails he has devoured bestrew the garden-walks.

BLACKBIRD (Merula vulgaris).—Out, with angry scream and chatter at the approach of an enemy, darts the "ousel cock so black of hue, with orange-tawny bill." How dull a lawn would be without his pert movements when he comes down alternately with his russet wife. One blackbird with a broad white feather on each side of his tail haunted Elderfield for two years, but, alas! one spring day a spruce sable rival descended and captivated the faithless dame. They united, chased poor Mr. Whitetail over the high garden hedge, and he was seen no more.

REDWING (Merula iliaca).—Not common, but noted by J. B. Y.

RING-OUZEL (Merula torquata).—Rare, but observed by J. B. Yonge in Otterbourne Park, 14th September 1865, and it has been seen several times later.

FIELDFARE (Merula pilaris).—In flocks in winter.

WHEATEAR (Sylvia aenanthe).—Comes to the downs.

STONECHAT (Saxicola rubicola).—Hops about on stones.

WHINCHAT (Saxicola rubetra).—On furze bushes on Otterbourne Hill.

REDBREAST (Sylvia rubecula).—A whole brood, two old and four young, used to disport themselves on the quilt of an old bedridden woman on Otterbourne Hill. It is the popular belief that robins kill their fathers in October, and the widow of a woodman declared that her husband had seen deadly battles, also that he had seen a white robin, but she possibly romanced.

REDSTART (Phaenicura ruticilla).—Sometimes seen, but not often.

GRASSHOPPER-WARBLER (Salicaria locustella).—Well named, for it chirps exactly like a grasshopper in the laurels all through a summer evening.

SEDGE-WARBLER (Salicaria fragilis).—Whoever has heard it scolding and chattering in a ridiculous rage at a strange footstep will not wonder at the Scotch name of Blethering Jock. A pair nested in Dell Copse for some years, and the curious nest has been found among the reeds on the banks of the Itchen.

NIGHTINGALE (Sylvia luscinia).—Every year about the 18th of April the notes may be heard by the gate of Cranbury, in a larch wood on Otterbourne Hill, in the copse wood of Otterbourne House, at Oakwood, and elsewhere. For about a week there is constant song, but after nesting begins, it is less frequent. One year there was a nest in the laurels at Otterbourne House (since taken away), and at eight in the morning and seven at night the nightingale came on the lawn to feed, and was every morning chased by a surly John Bull of a robin. When the young are coming out of the nest the parents chide them, or strangers, in a peculiarly harsh chirp.

BLACKCAP (Sylvia atricapilla).—Fair and sweet, but not very frequent; nested in Dell Copse.

WHITETHROAT (Sylvia cinerea).—Darts about gardens, and is locally called Nettle-creeper.

LESSER WHITETHROAT (S. curruca).—Eggs in Dell Copse.

WOOD-WARBLER (Sylvia sylvicola).—Eggs taken at Cranbury.

WILLOW-WARBLER (Sylvia trochilus).—Eggs taken at Baddesley.

CHIEFCHAFF (Sylvia hippolais).—Common in spring.

GOLDEN-CRESTED WREN (Sylvia auricapilla).—A happy little inhabitant of the fir-trees, where it nests, and it is often to be seen darting in and out of a quickset hedge.

SKYLARK (Alauda arvensis).—The joy of eyes and ears in every open field. True to the kindred points of heaven and home.

WOODLARK (Alauda arborea).—Otterbourne Park and Cranbury.

YELLOW-BUNTING or YELLOW-HAMMER (Emberiza citrinella).—A great ornament, especially in autumn, when it sits on rails, crying, "A little bit of bread and no che-e-ese!"

BLACKHEADED or REED BUNTING (Emberiza schaenidus).—Brambridge, April 1896.

SPARROW (Passer domesticus).—One curious fact about this despised animal is that the retired farmer, after whom Elderfield is named, made it his business to exterminate the village sparrows. He often brought them down to one, but always by the next morning that sparrow had provided himself with a mate to share his Castle Dangerous. Sparrows' (or sprows') heads make a figure in many church ratebooks.

CHAFFINCH (Fringilla caelebs).—Chink is the Hampshire name. The hens do not here migrate in winter, but a whole flight of them has been seen in the autumn on the Winchester road, evidently on their way; and once, after an early severe frost, about a hundred were found dead in a haystack near Basingstoke. Thomas Chamberlayne, Esq., who had a singular attraction for birds, used to have them coming to eat grain from his pocket. It has the perfection of a nest.

GOLDFINCH (Carduelis elegans).—This exquisite little bird is frequent on the borders of the chalk hills, where there is plenty of thistledown.

HAWFINCH (Coccothraustes vulgaris).—Sometimes seen, but not common.

LINNET (Linota cannabina).—Fairly frequent.

GREEN LINNET (Coccothraustes chloris).—Greenfinch, or Beanbird as they call it in Devonshire, is a pleasant visitor, though it has a great turn for pease.

WREN (Sylvia troglodytes).—This brisk little being Kitty Wren is to be seen everywhere. Whether Kingsley's theory is right that the little birds roll themselves into a ball in a hole in the winter, I know not. Single ones are certainly to be seen on a bank on a frosty, sunshiny day. Have they come out to view the world and report on it? Those very odd, unused nests are often to be found hanging from the thatch within outhouses. May it be recorded here that a wren once came to peck the sprigs on Miss Keble's gown?

GREAT TITMOUSE (Parus major)—or Ox-eye, as he is here called, bold and bright, crying "Peter" in early spring, and beautiful with his white cheek, and the black bar down his yellow waistcoat.

BLUE TIT (Parus caeruleus).—Bolder and prettier is the little blue- cap, a true sprite and acrobat as Wordsworth calls him.

MARSH-TIT (Parus palustris).—Known by less bright colouring and white breast.

COLE-TIT (Parus ater).—More grey, and very graceful. All these four will gladly come to a window in winter for a little fat hung to a string, and will put themselves into wonderful inverse positions.

LONG-TAILED TIT (Parus caudatus).—Long-tailed Caper, as is his local name, is more shy, and will not come to be fed; but the antics of a family after they have left their domed nest are delightful to watch, as they play in the boughs of a fir-tree.

HEDGE-SPARROW (Accentur modularis).—Quiet, mottled bird, to be seen everywhere.

PIED WAGTAIL (Motacilla lutor).—Most of these stay with us all winter, but one March evening at least forty-three descended on the lawn at Elderfield, doubtless halting in their flight from southern lands. Most winning birds they are, with their lively hop and jerking tails. Dish-washer is their Hampshire name.

GREY WAGTAIL (Motacilla boarula).—This pretty bird is really partly yellow. It is not very frequent here, but is sometimes found on the Itchen bank; likewise the nest in a reedy meadow.

RAY'S WAGTAIL (Motacilla Rayi).—Ray's Wagtail was catching flies on a window at Otterbourne House in 1890.

TREE PITT (Anthus arboreus), MEADOW PIPIT (Anthus pratensis).—Small brown birds, not easy to distinguish; but the eggs differ, and both have been found.

BULLFINCH (Pyrrhula vulgaris).—It is charming to greet the black head and red waistcoat in the tops of the laurels or apple-trees, and surely this destroyer of insect devourers does more good than harm, if he does pick the buds to pieces in the search. He is a delightful pet, of exclusive and jealous attachments, hating every one except his own peculiar favourite; and his sober-coloured lady has quite as much character as he. One which was devoted to her own mistress would assail another of the family with such spite as sometimes to drive her out of the room.

STARLING (Sturnus vulgaris).—Green bedropped with gold when seen closely, but at a distance looking more like a rusty blackbird, though its gait on the lawn always distinguishes it, being a walk instead of a hop. Though not tuneful, no bird has such a variety of notes, and the clatter on the root the call-note, the impatient summons of the brood about to be fed, make it a most amusing neighbour, when it returns to the same tree year after year.

RAVEN (Corvus corax).—He has flown over the village several times. One lived for many years in the yard of the George Inn at Winchester.

CROW (Corvus coronae).—Game-preserving has nearly put an end to him, but he is seen round the folds on the downs in lambing time.

ROOK (Corvus frugilegus).—Shining and black the great birds come down on the fields. There is a rookery at Cranbury, another at Hams Farm at Allbrook, and a considerable one in the beeches near Merdon, for which the rooks deserted some oak-trees nearer the House. While these trees were still inhabited, Mr. G. W. Heathcote observed a number of walnuts under them, and found that the rooks brought them from the walnut avenues. A parliament of these wise birds is sometimes held on the downs, and there are woods where they assemble in great numbers in the autumn, contingents from all lesser rookeries pouring in to spend the winter, and whirling round and round in clouds before roosting.

JACKDAW (Corvus monedula).—A very amusing, though very wicked pet. There used to be throngs of them in the tower of the old church at Hursley, and their droll voices might be heard conversing in the evening. Mr. Chamberlayne had one which, after being freed, always came down to greet him when he walked in the garden.

MAGPIE (Corvus pica).—Pages might be filled with the merry mischief of this handsome creature. Perhaps the most observable characteristic of the three tame ones closely observed was their exclusive and devoted attachment to one person, whom they singled out for no cause that could be known, and followed about from place to place.

JAY (Garrulus glandarius).—May be heard calling in the pine plantations on Hursley Common. It would be as amusing as the magpie if tamed.

GREEN WOODPECKER (Picus viridis).—The laugh and the tap may be heard all through the Spring days. In 1890 Picus major, a small, black, and spotted French Magpie, as Devonians call it, was found, but we have no other right to claim it.

WRYNECK (Yunx torquilla), or Cuckoo's mate, squeaks all round the woods with his head on one side just as the cuckoo comes.

NUTHATCH (Sitta europaea).—This pretty creature will come and be fed on nuts at windows in the winter. These nuts he thrusts into crevices of bark to hold them fast while he hammers the shell. The remains may often be found. For many years a pair built in a hole half-way down an old apple-tree covered with ivy at Otterbourne House, and the exertions of the magpie with clipped wing to swing himself on a trail of ivy into the hole were comical, as well as his wrath when he fell off, as he uniformly did.

TREE-CREEPER (Certhia familiaris), winds round and round the trees like a little mouse.

HOOPOE (Upupa vulgaris).—Once in a frost caught alive by a shepherd on the downs, but it soon died.

CUCKOO (Cuculus canorus).—They cuckoo till "in June he altereth his tune." Probably the stammer is the effort of the young ones to sing. One grew up in a wagtail's nest in the flints that were built into the wall of Otterbourne Churchyard. Another, carried to the other side of the road and caged, was still fed by its foster-parents till it was ready to fly.

WOOD-PIGEON (Columba palumbus) -

Take two cows, Taffy, Taffy, take two-o-o.

Plenty of this immoral exhortation may be heard in the trees. One young pigeon taken from the nest proved incorrigibly wild and ready to flutter to death whenever any one came near it.

TURTLE-DOVE (Columba turtur).—This pretty delicate creature with speckled neck builds in bushes lower than the wood-pigeon, and the mournful note resounds in the trees.

PHEASANT (Phasianus colchicus).—Not a real native, but cultivated to any extent. A cock pheasant with the evening sun gilding his back is a rare picture of beauty.

PARTRIDGE (Tetrao perdix).—Numerous.

HERON (Ardea cinerea).—Sometimes flies far overhead, the long legs projecting behind.

SANDPIPER (Totanus hypoleucus).—Seen walking over a mass of weeds in the Itchen canal.

SNIPE (Scolopax gallinago).—Brought in by sportsmen from the water meadows.

WOODCOCK (Scolopax rusticola).—Not common, but sometimes shot.

JACK-SNIPE (Scolopax gallinula).—Not common, but sometimes shot.

LAND-RAIL (Crex pratensis).—Corn-Crake. May be heard "craking" in the long grass in early morning before the hay is cut.

WATER-RAIL (Rallus aquaticus).—In a meadow at Otterbourne, 22nd January 1855.

LITTLE GREBE (Podiceps minor).—Dabchick, as it is commonly called, swims in the Itchen and in Fisher's Pond (on Colden Common), dipping down suddenly without a trace of the least alarm.

MOOR-HEN (Gallinula chloropus).—Very similar are the ways of the moor-hen, with its brilliant beak. But once, by some extraordinary chance, a moor-hen fell down a cottage chimney, and was brought alive for inspection by a boy, who, ignorant of natural objects, as was always the case in villages forty years ago, thought it a rare foreign specimen. It was a thatched cottage, but if it had been slated the moor-hen might have taken the roof for a sheet of water by moonlight, as the Great Water-Beetle has been known to do, and come down the chimney in like manner. A brood comes constantly to be fed on a lawn at Bishopstoke.

PEEWIT (Vanellus cristatus).—Otherwise the Crested Lapwing. It floats along in numbers when migrating, the whole flock turning at the same time and displaying either the dark or the white side of their wings with a startling effect. They seem effaced for a moment, the next the white sails are shown, then gone again. When paired, and nesting in the meadows, their cry causes their local name, as their other English title is derived from their characteristic manoeuvres to lead the enemy from their young. Did they learn the habit when their so-called plovers' eggs became a dainty?

GOLDEN PLOVER (Charadrius pluvialis).—Noted at Otterbourne meadows by J. B. Yonge.

WILD DUCK (Anas boschas).—The mallard is splendid in plumage, and in shape is far more graceful than his domesticated brother. In early winter the wild ducks fly overhead in a wedge-shaped phalanx, and by and by they pair, and if disturbed start up with a sudden quack, quack from the copse-wood pond. Broods of downy wild ducks have been brought in by boys, but it has almost always proved impossible to rear them.

TEAL (Querquedula anas).—This very pretty little duck used to build on Cranbury Common, but may have been frightened away by increasing population.

GULL (Larus canus).—Flocks of those white-breasted birds sometimes alight on ploughed fields round Otterbourne, and even some miles farther from the sea. They are sometimes kept in gardens to destroy the slugs.

These birds have all been actually seen and noted down by members of the Yonge family.

FLOWERS

TRAVELLER'S JOY (Clematis Vitalba).—Locally called Old Man's Beard, most appropriately, as its curling, silvery masses of seeds hang in wreaths over the hedges. There is a giant trunk growing up from the moat of Merdon Castle.

MEADOW RUE (Thalictrum flavum).—Handsome foliage and blossoms, showing much of anthers, growing on the banks of the Itchen canal.

WINDFLOWER (Anemone nemorosa).—Smellfoxes, as the villagers' children inelegantly term this elegant flower, spreading its pearl- white blossom, by means of its creeping root, all over the copses, and blushing purple as the season advances.

WATER CROWFOOT (Ranunculus aquatilis).—The white flowers, with yellow eyes, make quite a sheet over the ponds of Cranbury Common, etc. Ivy-leaved (R. hederaceus).—Not so frequent. The ivy-shaped leaves float above, the long fibrous ones go below. When there is lack of moisture, leaves and flower are sometimes so small that it has been supposed to be a different species. It was once in a stagnant pond in Boyatt Lane, but is extinct again.

BUTTERCUP or CROWFOOT - (R. sceleratus) Highly-polished petals, which spangle (R. acris) the fields and hedges with gold. (R. repens) All much alike; all haunting (R. bulbosus) kitchen-gardens and pastures, where the cattle, disliking their taste, leave the stems standing up alone.

SPEARWORT (R. flammula).—Flower like the others, but with narrow leaves.

GOLDILOCKS (R. auricomus).—More delicate, upper leaves spear-shaped, lower pinnate. In the borders of the copse wood of Otterbourne House.

CORN CROWFOOT (R. Ficaria).—Small, growing between the corn with hooked capsules.

SMALL CELANDINE (R. Bcaria).—The real buttercup of childhood, with its crown of numerous shining petals, making stars along the banks at the first breath of spring. One of the most welcome of flowers.

KING CUPS (Caltha palustris).—Large, gorgeous flowers, in every wet place, making a golden river in a dell at Cranbury.

GREEN HELLEBORE (Helleborus viridis).—Under an oak-tree, in a hedgerow leading from King's Lane, Standon, and in Hursley.

FUMITORY (Fumaria officinalis).—The pretty purple blossoms and graceful bluish foliage often spring up in gardens where they are treated as weeds.

YELLOW F. (F. lutea).—An old wall at Hursley.

CLIMBING F. (Corydalis claviculata).—Cuckoo bushes. Standon, and in Hursley.

COLUMBINE (Aquilegia vulgaris).—This group of purple doves, or of Turkish slippers, does not here merit the term vulgaris, though, wherever it occurs, it is too far from a garden to be a stray. Ampfield Wood, Lincoln's Copse, King's Lane, and Crabwood have each furnished a specimen.

BARBERRY (Berberis vulgaris).—This handsome shrub of yellow wood, delicate clusters of yellow flowers, and crimson fruit in long oval bunches has been sedulously banished from an idea that it poisons grass in its vicinity. There used to be a bush in Otterbourne House grounds, but it has disappeared, and only one now remains in the hedge of Pitt Downs.

POPPY (Papaver Rhaeas).—Making neglected fields glorious with a crimson mantle, visible for miles in the sun.

GREATER CELANDINE (Chelidonium majus).—Yellow flowers, very frail, handsome pinnate leaf—lane at Brambridge, Standon, and in Hursley.

CRUCIFERA

ROCKET (Diplotaxis tenuifolia).—Seen at Brambridge.

CHARLOCK (Sinapis arvensis).—Making fields golden.

WHITE C. (S. alba).—Standon, Hursley.

JACK-BY-THE-HEDGE (Sisymbrium alliaria).—Seen at Brambridge.

LADY'S SMOCK (Cardamine pratensis).—No doubt named because the pearly flowers look on a moist meadow like linen bleaching. Sometimes double in rich ground.

HAIRY CARDAMINE (C. hirsuta).—Hursley.

YELLOW ROCKET (Barbarea vulgaris).—Road near Chandler's Ford. Near bridge over Itchen.

WATERCRESS (Nasturtium officinale).—Everywhere in running water, and now Poolhole is made into a nursery for it.

SHEPHERD'S PURSE (Thlaspi Bursa-pastoris).—Even the purses are to be seen before we well know the tiny white flowers to be in blossom.

PENNYCRESS (T. arvense).—Larger, and uplifting a spike of rounded, fan-shaped capsules.

WILD MIGNONETTE (Reseda lutea).—Mignonette all but the perfume— chalk-pits.

DYER'S ROCKET (R. luteola).—Slenderer and more spiked; more common.

ROCK ROSE (Helianthemum vulgare).—There is an elegance and delicacy of colour about this little cistus which renders it one of the most charming of the many stars of the wayside, as it grows on Compton Hill.

SWEET VIOLET (Viola odorata).—The colour, purple or white or pink, seems to depend on the soil. White are the most common on the chalky side, blue on the gravel.

MARSH V. (V. palustris).—Small and pale, with round leaves. Seen at a spring in Otterbourne Park. (V. permixta).—Pinky—Kiln-yard, Otterbourne.

DOG V. (V. canina).—In every wood, rich and handsome.

SNAKE V. (V. hirta).—More delicate and small, growing in turf— Pleasure Grounds, Cranbury. (V. Riviniana).—Hursley Park. (V. Reichenbachiana).—Dane Lane. The three last are very probably only sports of canina.

CREAM-COLOURED V. (V. lactea).—More skim-milk coloured, but known by lanceolate leaves—cuckoo bushes.

PANSY (V. tricolor).—Everywhere in fallow fields. In rich soil the upper petals become purple.

SUNDEW -

(Drosera rotundifolia) The curious, hairy, dewy leaves (D. intermedia) and flowers that never open in full day are to be found in the marshes near Hiltingbury.

MILKWORT (Polygala vulgaris).—Small and blue on Otterbourne Hill, as a stitch in the embroidery of the turf; but larger, blue, pink, or white in the water-meadows beside the Itchen, deserving the American name of May-wings.

CARYOPHYLLEAE

DEPTFORD PINK (Dianthus Armeria).—This used to grow in a field near Highbridge, but has been destroyed, either purposely or by fencing.

BLADDER CAMPION (Silene inflata).—Showing its white flowers and swelling calyxes everywhere.

COMMON CATCHFLY (S. anglica).—Small and insignificant among corn.

RED CAMPION (Lychnis diurna).—Robins, as children call it, with the bright pink in every hedge and the undergrowth in every copse.

WHITE C. (L. vespertina).—The white flowers make a feature in fallow fields.

RAGGED ROBIN (L. Flos-cuculi).—The curiously slashed and divided pink flowers flourish in the water-meadows by the Itchen.

CORN COCKLE (Agrostemma githago).—The beautiful purple blossoms, set in long graceful calyxes, adorn the paths through wheat and barley fields everywhere.

LESSER STITCHWORT (Maenchia erecta). -

CHICKWEED - (Cerastiurn vulgatum) Early plant. Uninteresting (C. arvense) tiny white flowers.

STARWORT (Stellaria Holostea).—The bright stitches of white embroidery on our banks.

CHICKWEED (S. media.)—The chickweed dear to bird-keepers. (S graminea).—Cobweb-like, almost invisible stems, and blossom with a fairy brightness over the heaths. (S. uliginosa).—The same adapted to marshes—Cuckoo Bushes, Helmsley.

SANDWORT (Arenaria Rubra).—The little pink flowers crop up through the gravel paths.

CORN SPURREY (Spergula arvensis).—Very long-spurred, with white small blossoms.

(Alsine tenuifolia).—Roman road between Hursley and Sparsholt.

KNAWEL (Scleranthus annuus).—Hursley.

ST. JONN'S-WORT TRIBE

TUTSAN (Hypericum Androsaemum).—Handsome flower, and seeds—Cranbury and Allbrook.

ST. JOHN'S-WORT (H. perforatum). (H. dubium). (H. hirsutum).—All frequent in the hedges. (H. humifusum). (H. pulchrum). (H. Elodes).—Bogs near Cuckoo Bushes. (H. quadrangulum).

MALLOW (Malva sylvestris).—Everywhere by roadsides, used to be esteemed by old women as a healing "yarb."

MUSK M. (M. moschata).—A beautiful pink or white flower, grows all over the park at Cranbury.

DWARF M. (M. rotundifolia).—Flower white, with purple streaks, almost stemless, grows under a wall in Otterbourne Street.

SMALL-LEAVED LIME (Tilia parvifolia).—Hursley Park; avenue at Brambridge, where four rows form three magnificent aisles.

CRANESBILL TRIBE

DOVE'S-FOOT CRANE'S-BILL (Geranium Columbinum).—Roadsides.

SHINING C. (G. lucidum).—Heap of stones, Hursley. (G. dissectum).—Everywhere. (G. Molle).—Otterbourne

HERB ROBERT C. (G. Robertianum).—Very common, and the crimson leaves a great winter ornament.

BLOODY C. (G. phaeum).—Ladwell Hill, where it may be a remnant of a cottage garden.

STORK'S-BILL (Erodium moschatum).—Otterbourne Hill. (E. cicutarium).—Farley Mount.

WOOD-SORREL (Oxalis Acetosella).—This exquisite plant with delicate flower and trefoil leaves grows on many mossy banks, especially on one on the Ampfield Road.

HOLLY (Ilex Aquifolium).—The glory of the peaty woods. The people distinguish the berried shrubs as holly, i.e. holy, those without berries being holm.

SPINDLE-TREE (Euonymus europaeus).—Also called skewer wood. "A tree that grows on purpose," as an old woman said of the material of her pegs. The charming berries with their crimson hearts are plentiful in King's Lane.

BUCKTHORN (Rhamnus Frangula).—Otterbourne Hill. (R. catharticus) .—Hursley.

SYCAMORE (Acer Pseudo-platanus).—Road by Oakwood.

MAPLE (A. campestre).—Painting the hedges in autumn with its yellow leaves.

LEGUMINOSE

FURZE (Ulex europaeus).—Brilliant on all the commons on gravel or peat.

DWARF FURZE (U. nanus)—Rather less frequent.

BROOM (Genista scoparia).—Exquisite golden spires on the peat.

NEEDLE BROOM (G. anglica).—Cuckoo Bushes.

DYER'S GREENWEED (G. tinctoria).—In a ditch in a meadow on the Ampfield Road.

REST HARROW (Ononis arvensis).—Pretty pink and white blossoms like miniature lady-peas on a troublesome weed.

KIDNEY VETCH (Anthyllis Vulneraria) .—Borders of down.

BLACK MEDICK (Medicago lupulina).—Chalk-pit.

(M. denticulata) .—Ampfield.

MELILOT (Melilotus officinalis).—Kiln Lane, Otterbourne.

BIRDSFOOT (Ornithopus perpusillus).—Otterbourne Hill. (Trigonella ornithopodioides).—Otterbourne.

TREFOIL ( Trifulium subterraneum). (T. pratense).

DUTCH CLOVER (T. repens).

HOPDOWN (T. procumbens). (T. minus). (T. hybridum).

STRAWBERRY TREFOIL (T. fragiferum).—Once on canal bank.

MILK VETCH (Hippocrepis comosa).—Hursley.

BIRD'S-FOOT TREFOIL (Lotus corniculatus).—This golden or ruddy part of the embroidery of the down is known to children as Ladies' Slippers or Ladies' Fingers. (L. major).—A taller variety.

TARE (Ervum hirsutum).—Tiny grey flowers. (E. tetraspermum).

PURPLE VETCH (Vicia Cracca).—Throwing royal purple garlands over every hedge in the lanes.

COMMON V. (V. sativa).—Very common, varying from crimson to dark red.

WOOD V. (V. sepium).—A brilliant little red flower.

GRASS VETCHLING (Lathyrus Nissolia).—Found once in a bank near Chandler's Ford; once at Silkstede.

WOOD V. (L. sylvestris).—Doubtful, but something like it grows in Sparrow Grove near the waterworks.

YELLOW V. (L. pratensis).—Common, mixed with grass.

HEATH PEA (Orobus tuberosus).—On the peat soil.

ROSE TRIBE

BLACKTHORN (Prunus spinosa).—It is believed that no hurt is so hard of healing as from a blackthorn. Also blackthorn winter is supposed to bring fresh cold in spring, when the bushes almost look as if clothed by hoar-frost.

WILD CHERRY (P. Avium).—The fine, tall, shapely trees put on their bridal show in the woods of Cranbury and Ampfield.

BIRD-CHERRY (P. Padus).—Not very common. There is one in the grounds at Otterbourne House, but it is not certainly wild.

MEADOW-SWEET (Spiraea Ulmaria).—Raising its creamy cymes of blossoms in every ditch where there is a little moisture.

DROPWORT (S. Filipendula).—On the borders of Pitt Down and Crab Wood.

AGRIMONY (Agrimonia Eupatoria).—Long yellow spikes in all dry hedges.

BURNET (Sanguisorba officinalis).—Chalk-pit by Sparrow Grove, also Dane Lane, where the green balls with tiny red blossoms may be found, and sometimes the green and crimson burnet moth.

BARREN STRAWBERRY (Potentilla Fragariastrum).—How often has "mustn't pick the strawberry blossom" been quoted to this delusive little white cinquefoil in early spring, when it peeps out among leaves very like strawberry-leaves in the hedge.

TORMENTIL (P. Tormentilla).—This is now ranged among the cinquefoils, though it has only four petals, owing perhaps to the very dry barren heathy soil it brightens with its stars.

CINQUEFOIL (P. repens).—A smiling pentagon star by the wayside.

SILVER-WEED or GOOSE-GRASS (P. anserina).—Why dedicated to geese, even in Latin, it is hard to say. Silver-weed is more appropriate to the silver-grey leaves that border road-sides, sometimes with golden flowers.

MARSH CINQUEFOIL (Comarum palustre).—A prize in Baddesley bog, unless drains have banished its pure flower.

WOOD STRAWBERRY (Fragaria vesca).—Profuse in Cranbury and on banks of railway at Sparrow Grove.

WILD RASPBERRY (Rubus Idaeus).—Cranbury, near the road.

WILD BLACKBERRY (R. fruticosus).—Brambles, of course, everywhere, but it is impossible to pass them without a tribute to their beauty, in flower, in fruit, and, above all, in autumn foliage.

DEWBERRY (R. caesius).—What is probably dewberry grows by the roadway through Mallibar Copse. (R. leucostratus).—Roman Road and Cranbury Common.

HERB BENNET (Geum urbanum).—Insignificant yellow flower.

WATER AVENS (G. rivale).—Quaint little ruddy half-expanded blossoms, called by the villagers Granny's Night-caps. (G. intermedium).—Really intermediate—probably hybrid. Found once in a copse between Boyatt Lane and the Southampton Road.

LADY'S MANTLE (Alchemilla arvensis).—Crabwood.

SWEET-BRIAR (Rosa rubiginosa).—Copse by pond, Cranbury.

DOG-ROSE (R. canina).—With handsomer hips.

WHITE DOG-ROSE (R. arvensis).

HAWTHORN (Crataegus monogyna).—Who does not love when the blossoms cover them like snow-drift? Well are they called May.

MOUNTAIN ASH (Pyrus Aucuparia).—This rowan-tree of Scotland has no weird horrors here, but it is the ornament of the woods, with white cymes, red berries, and feathery leaves.

CRAB-TREE (P. Malus).—Romsey Road, where the pinky blossoms show opposite Cranbury Gate.

WHITEBEAM (P. Aria).—Grey or white leaves shine out in Ampfield Wood.

PURPLE LOOSESTRIFE (Lythrum salicaria).—Ophelia's long purples adorn the water-courses in the Itchen mead.

WILLOW-HERB TRIBE

ROSEBAY WILLOW-HERB (Epilobium angustifolium).—This splendid flower, rose-coloured, white-pistilled and red-leaved, spreads in sheets in Cranbury Copse and on railway cuttings, at Cuckoo Bushes, and in Ampfield Wood.

CODLINS-AND-CREAM (E. hirsutum).—Adorning wet places.

SMALL WILLOW-HERB— (E. parvaeorurn) Troublesome though pretty weeds in the garden. (E. tetragonum) (E. roseum) (E. montanum).—Found at Ampfield.

ENCHANTER'S NIGHTSHADE (Circaea lutetiana).—A graceful, delicate- looking plant of universal occurrence.

WATER STARWORT (Callitriche verna).—Ponds.

MARESTAIL (Hippuris vulgaris).—Waves with the current of the stream in the Itchen.

WHITE BRYONY (Bryonia dioica).—Vine-like leaves wreathe round in the hedges, and the pale, whitish flowers give place to graceful clusters of red berries.

GOOSEBERRY (Ribes Grossularia).—Lane towards Brambridge.

SAXIFRAGEA

ORPINE (Sedum Telephium).—Also called Midsummer May; grows in Otterbourne Park, and a large bunch on the Romsey Road. An old woman described having tried the augury, having laid the plants in pairs on Midsummer Eve, naming them after pairs of sweethearts. Those that twisted away from each other showed inconstancy!

STONECROP (S. anglicum).—Otterbourne Hill. (S. acre).—Hursley.

HOUSELEEK (Sempervivum tectorum).—Also called Sin-green, or some word so sounding. It is not permitted to blow upon the roof on which it grows, for fear of ill-luck, which is strange, as it has been Jupiter's beard, Thor's beard, and St. George's beard, and in Germany is thought to preserve from thunder.

SAXIFRAGE (Saxifraga tridactylites).—Hursley.

GOLDEN S. (Chrysosplenium oppositifolium).—Wet places in Lincoln's Copse.

MARSH PENNYWORT (Hydrocotyle vulgaris).—Bogs at Cuckoo Bushes.

WOOD SANICLE (Sanicula vulgaris).—In all the copses.

UMBELLIFERA

GOUTWEED (AEgopodium Podagra).—Handsome leaves, but a troublesome weed.

PIGNUT (Bunium flexuosum).—The delicate, lace-like, umbellate flowers in all the woods.

WATER DROPWORT (OEnanthe fistulosa).—Banks of Itchen.

WATER HEMLOCK (OE. crocata).—Itchen banks.

WILD CARROT (Daucus Carota).

BURNET SAXIFRAGE (Pimpinella Sax Jraga).—Hursley.

COW PARSLEY (Chaerophyllum sylvestre).—Boys may be seen bearing home bundles for their rabbits.

SHEPHERD'S NEEDLE (Scandix Pecten Veneis).—In cornfields.

HEDGE PARSLEY (Torilis infesta).—Hursley.

HEMLOCK (Conium maculatum).

IVY (Hedera Helix).—Everywhere.

DOGWOOD (Cornus sanguinea).—The red and purple of the fading leaves mixed with the yellow of the maples make every hedge a study.

MISTLETOE (Viscum album).—Grows on hawthorns in Hursley Park, and on apple-trees at Otterbourne.

MOSCATEL (Adoxa Moschatellina).—This dainty little green-headed plant is one of the harbingers of spring.

ELDER (Sambucus nigra).—In most hedges, though its honours are gone as the staple of elder-wine, and still better of elder-flower water, which village sages used to brew, and which was really an excellent remedy for weak eyes.

GUELDER-ROSE (Viburnum Opulus).—Equally handsome whether white- garlanded cymes of blossoms or scarlet berries, waxen when partly ripe.

WAYFARING-TREE (V. Lantana).—Not quite so common, but handsome, with white flowers and woolly leaves.

HONEYSUCKLE (Lonicera Periclymenum).—To be seen in full glory waving on the top of a holly-tree, and when the stem has become amalgamated with a bough, circling it like the staff of Esculapius, it is precious to boys.

(L. Caprifolium).—Noted as once found, but not lately.

MADDER TRIBE

MADDER (Rubia peregrina).—Tiny flowers—Otterbourne Hill.

CROSSWORT or MUGWORT (Galium Cruciatum).—Roadside, Allbrook.

YELLOW LADY'S BEDSTRAW (G. verum).—Everywhere.

MARSH B. (G. palustre).—Cuckoo Bushes. (G. uliginosum).—Gravel-pit, Otterbourne.

WHITE BEDSTRAW (G. erectum).—Winchester Road.

CLEAVERS or CLIDERS (G. Aparine).—Everywhere.

ROUGH (G. Mollugo).—Cornfields.

WOODRUFF (Asperula odorata).—Sparrow Grove. (A. cynanchica).—Chalk downs.

FIELD MADDER (Sherardia arvensis).—Otterbourne Hill.

VALERIAN (Valeriana dioica).—Itchen meadows.

LESSER V. (V. officinalis).—Itchen meadows.

LAMB'S LETTUCE (Valerianella olitorium).—Downs and stubble-fields.

TEASEL (Dipsacus sylvestris).—Grand ornament to the hedges. On a fallow field it came up in quantities, as if sown.

DEVIL'S-BIT SCABIOUS (Scabiosa succisa).—Makes grey clouds all over Cranbury Park.

COMMON S. (S. arvensis).—Everywhere.

LESSER S. (S. Columbaria).—Malabar wayside.

HARE BELL (Campanula rotundifolia).—Otterbourne Hill.

NETTLE-LEAVED BELLFLOWER (C. Trachelium).—Road-sides.

CLUSTERED B. (C. glomerata).—Pitt Down.

COMPOSITAE

THISTLES (Carduus nutans). (C. tenuifolia).

MILK THISTLE (Silybum marianum).—Once in Boyatt Lane. (S crispus). (Cnicus lanceolatus). (C. palustris). (C. arvensis).

STEMLESS T. (C. acaulis).—Little purple stars on the downs.

CARLINE (Carlina vulgaris).

BURDOCK (Arctium Lappa).—Everywhere. (A. tomentosa).

SAW-WORT (Serratula tinctoria).—Copses round King's Lane.

KNAPWEED (Centaurea nigra).—Everywhere. (C. Cyanea).—In fields about Hursley occasionally. (C. Scabiosa).—Hursley.

CORN MARIGOLD (Chrysanthemum segetum).—Sometimes plentiful, but dependent on crops.

OX-EYE DAISY (C. Leucanthemum).—Everywhere.

CAMOMILE (Pyrethrum inodorum).—Everywhere.

TANSY (Tanacetum vulgaris).—King's Lane.

COMMON CHAMOMILE (Anthemis nobilis). (A. arvensis). (A. Cotula).

YARROW (Achillea Millefolium).

SNEEZEWORT (A. Ptarmica).—Southampton Road sides.

WORMWOOD (Artemisia vulgaris).—Kiln Lane turns to Moat House.

CUDWEED (Gnaphalium minimum). (G. germanium). (G. sylvaticum).

GROUNDSEL (Senecio vulgaris). (S. sylvaticus).

RAGWORT (S. Jacobaea).—Often covered with black and yellow caterpillars. (S. viscosus).—Marked as found at Hursley. (S. aquaticus).

FLEABANE (Inula Conyza).—Southampton Road. (I. Pulicaria).

DAISY (Bellis perennis).

BLUE FLEABANE (Erigeron acris).

GOLDENROD (Solidago Virga-aurea).—Wood-paths and road-sides.

COLTSFOOT (Tussilago Farfara).—In all chalky fields.

BUTTERBUR (Petasites vulgaris).—Banks of Itchen.

BUR-MARIGOLD (Bidens cernua).—It used to be in a marsh on the Romsey Road, but has not been seen lately.

HEMP AGRIMONY (Eupatorium cannabinum).—In all hedges near moisture.

CHICORY (Cichorium Intybus).—Now and then showing its pretty blue flower on the roadside.

NIPPLEWORT (Lapsana communis).—Too frequent weed.

DANDELION (Leontodon Taraxacum).—How can its praise for glorious brilliant flowers and stems fit for chains be passed by, or for the "clocks" that furnish auguries! (L. autumnalis).—Is this a separate species, or the dandelion blowing in autumn?

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