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allowed, any high degree of cultivation." But, whatever view we take of this historical question, the scenery of the New Forest is indissolubly associated with the memory of the two first Norman hunter-kings. There is probably no place in England which in its general aspect appears for centuries to have undergone so little change. The very people are unchanged. After walking in a summer afternoon for several miles amongst thick glades, guided only by the course of the declining sun,

“ Over hill, over dale,

Thorough bush, thorough briar," we came, in the low ground between Beaulieu and Denny Lodge, upon two peasants gathering a miserable crop of rowan. To our questions as to the proper path, they gave a grin, which expressed as much cunning as idiotcy, and pointed to a course which led us directly to the edge of a bog. They were low of stature, and coarse in feature. The collar of the Saxon slave was not upon their necks, but they were the descendants of the slave, through a long line who had been here toiling in hopeless ignorance for seven centuries. Their mental chains have never been loosened. A mile or two farther we encountered a tall and erect man, in a peculiar costume, half peasant, half huntsman. He had the frank manners of oue of nature's gentlemen, and insisted upon going with us a part of the way which we sought to Lyndhurst. His family, too, had been settled here, time out of mind. He was the descendant of the Norman huntsman, who had been trusted and encouraged, whilst the Saxon ehurl was feared and oppressed. There is a lesson still to be taught by the eondition of the two races in the primitive wilds of the New Forest,

But we are digressing from our proper theme. In these thick coverts, we find not many trees, and especially oaks, of that enormous size which indicates the growth of centuries. The forest has been neglected. Trees of every variety, with underwood in proportion, have oppressed each the other's luxuriance, Now and then a vigorous tree has shot up above its neighbours; but the general aspect is that of continuous wood, of very slow and stunted growth, with occasional ranges of low wet land almost wholly devoid of wood. There are many spots, undoubtedly, of what we call picturesque beauty ; but the primitive solitariness of the place is its great charm. We are speaking, of course, of those parts which must be visited by a pedestrian ; for the high roads necessarily lead through the most cultivated lands, passing through a few villages which have nothing of the air of belonging to so wild and primitive a region. Lyndhurst, the prettiest of towns, is the capital of the Forest. Here its courts, with their peculiar jurisdiction, are held in a hall of no great antiquity ; but in that hall hangs the stirrup which tradition, from time immemorial, asserts was attached to the saddle from which William Rufus fell, when struck by the glancing arrow of Walter Tyrell. There is a circumstance even more remarkably associated with tradition, to be found in the little village of Minested. It is recorded that the man who picked up the body of the Red king was named Purkess ; that he was a charcoal-burner ; and that he conveyed the body to Winchester in the cart which he employed in his trade. Over the door of a little shop in that village we saw the name of Purkess in 1843-a veritable relic of the old times. Mr. Rose has recorded the fact in prose and verse, of the charcoalburner's descendants still living in this spot, and still possessing one horse and cart, and no more :

"A Minestead churl, whose wonted traile
Was burning charcoal in the glade,

Outstretch'd amid the gorse

The monarch found ; and in his wain
He raised, and to St. Swithin's fane

Convey'd the bleeding corse.
And still, so runs our forest creed,
Flourish the pious woodman's seed

Even the selfsame spot:
One horse and cart their little store,
Like their forefather's, neither more

Nor less the children's lot.

And still, in merry Lyndhurst hall,
Red William's stirrup decks the wall;

Who lists, the sight may see;
And a fair stone, in green Malwood,
Informs the traveller where stood

The memorable tree."


The "fair stone,” which was erected by Lord Delaware in 1745, is now put into an iron case, of supreme ugliness ; and we are informed as follows :-“ This stone having been much mutilated, and the inscriptions on each of its three sides defaced, this more durable memorial, with the original inscriptions, was erected in the year 1841, by William Sturges Bourne, Warden." Another century will see whether this boast of durability will be of any account. In the time of Leland, there was a chapel built on the spot. It would be a wise act of the Crown, to whom this land belongs, to found a school here--a better way of continuing a record than Lord Delaware's stone, or Mr. Sturges Bourne's iron. The history of their country, its constitution, it privileges—the duties and rights of Englishmen-things which are not taught to the children of our labouring millions—might worthily commence to be taught on the spot where the Norman tyrant fell, leaving successors who one by one came to the knowledge that the people were something not to be despised or neglected. The following is the inscription on the original stone :


“ Here stood the oak-tree on which the arrow, shot by Sir William Tyrrel, at a stag, glanced,

and struck King William II., surnamed Rufus, on the breast; of which stroke he in

stantly died, on the second of August, 1100. “ King William II., surnamed Rufus, being slain, as before related, was laid in a cart be.

longing to one Purkess, and drawn from hence to Winchester, and buried in the cathedral

church of that city. “That the spot where an event so memorable had happened might not hereafter be unknown,

this stone was set up by John Lord Delaware, who had seen the tree growing in this place, anno 1745."



Rufus. Tyrrel, spur onward ! we must not await
The laggard lords : when they have heard the dogs,
I warrant they will follow fast enough,
Each for his haunch. Thy roan is mettlesome;
How the rogue sidles up to me, and claims
Acquaintance with young Yorkshire ! uot afraid
Of wrinkling lip, nor ear laid down like grass,
By summer thunder shower on Windsor mead.

Tyrrel. Behold, my liege ! hither they troop amain,
Over yon gap.

Over my pales? the dolts
Have broken down my pales !

Please you, my liege,
Unless they had, they must have ridden round
Eleven miles.

Rufus. Why not have ridden round
Eleven miles ? or twenty, were there need.
By our lady! they shall be our carpenters
And mend what they have marr'd. At any time
I can make fifty lords ; but who can make
As many head of deer, if mine escape ?
And sure they will, unless they too are mad.
Call me that bishop - him with hunting-cap
Surcharged with cross, and scarlet above knee.

Tyrrel (galloping forward.) Ho! my lord bishop!
Bishop. Who calls me.

Your slave.
Bishop. Well said, if toned as well and timed as well.
Who art thou ? citizen or hind? what wantest?

Tyrre. My lord ! your presence ; but before the king ;
Where it may grow more placid at its leisure.
The morn is only streakt with red, my lord !
You beat her out and out: how prettily
You wear your stockings over head and ears !
Keep off the gorse and broom ! they soon catch fire !

Bishop. The king shall hear of this. I recognise
Sir Walter Tyrrel.

And Sir Walter Tyrrel
By the same token duly recognises
The Church's well-begotten son, well-fed,
Well mounted, and all well, except well-spoken,
The spiritual lord of Winchester.

Bishop. Ay, by God's grace ! pert losel !

Prick along
Lord bishop! quicker ! catch fresh air ! we want it;
We have had foul enough till dinner time.

Bishop. Varlet ! I may chastise this insolence.

Tyrrel. I like those feathers; but there crows no cock
Without an answer. Though the noisest throat
Sings from the belfrey of snug Winchester,
Yet he from Winchester hath stouter spurs.

Bishop. God's blood ! were I no bishop --

Then thy own
Were cooler.

Bishop. Whip that hound aside ! O Christ!
The beast has paw'd my housings ! What a day
For dirt !

Tyrrel. The scent lies well ; pity no more
The housings ; look, my lord! here trots the king !

Rufus. Which of you broke my palings down?


God knows,
Most gracious sir.

No doubt he does ; but you,
Bishop ! could surely teach us what God knows.
Ride back and order some score handicrafts
To fix them in their places,

The command
Of our most gracious king shall be obeyed.

[Riding off
Malisons on the atheist ! Who can tell
Where are my squires and other men ! confused
Among the servitors of temporal lords !
I must e'en turn again and hail that brute.
Sir Walter ! good Sir Walter ! one half word !

[7'yrrel rides towards him. Sir Walter! may I task your courtesy To find me any of my followers ?

Tyrrel. Willingly.

Stay with me; I want thee, Tyrrel !
What does the bishop boggle at ?

At nothing.
He seeks his people, to retrieve the damage.

Rufus, Where are the lords?

Gone past your grace, bare headed,
And falling in the rear.

Well, prick them on.
I care but little for the chase to-day,
Although the scent lies sweetly. To knock down
My paling is vexatious. We must see
Our great improvements in this forest; what
Of roads blockt up, of hamlets swept away,
Of lurking dens called cottages, and cells,
And hermitages. Tyrrel ! thou did’st right
And dutifully, to remove the house
Of thy forefathers. 'Twas an odd request
To leave the dovecote for the sake of those
Flea-bitten blind old pigeons. There it stands !
But, in God's name! What mean these hives? the bees
May sting my dogs.

They hunt not in the summer.
Rufus. They may torment my fawns.

Sir! not unless
Driven from their hives ; they like the flowers much better.

Rufus. Flowers! and leave flowers too ?

Only some half-wild,
In tangled knots ; balm, clary, marjoram.

Rufus. What lies beyond this close briar hedge, that smells
Through the thick dew upon it, pleasantly?

Tyrrel. A poor low cottage : the dry marl-pit shields it,
And, frail and unsupported like itself,
Peace-breathing honeysuckles comfort it
In its misfortunes.

I am fain to laugh

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At thy rank minstrelsy. A poor low cottage !
Only a poor low cottage ! where, 1 ween,
A poor low maiden blesses Walter Tyrrel.

Tyrrel. It may be so.

No; it may not be so.
My orders were that all should be removed ;
And, out of special favour, special trust
In thee, Sir Walter, I consign'd the care
Into thy hands, of razing thy own house
And those about it ; since thou hast another
Fairer and newer, and more lands around.

Tyrrel. Hall, chapel, chamber, cellar, turret, grange,
Are level with the grass.

What negligence
To leave the work then incomplete, when little
Was there remaining! Strip that roof, and start
Thy petty game from cover.

O my liege !
Command not this !

Make me no confidant
Of thy base loves.

Nor you, my liege ! nor any :
None such hath Walter Tyrrel.

Thou 'rt at bay ;
Thou hast forgotten thy avowal, man !

Tyrrel. My father's house is (like my father) gone :
But in that house, and from that father's heart
Mine grew into that likeness, and held thence
Its rich possessions - God forgive my boast !
He bade me help the needy, raise the low-

Rufus. And stand against thy king !

How many yokes
Of oxen, from how many villages
For miles around, brought I, at my own charge,
To bear away the rafters and the beams
That were above my cradle at my birth,
And rang when I was christened, to the carouse
Of that glad father and his loyal friends!

Rufus. He kept good oheer, they tell me.

Yonder thatch
Covers the worn-out woman at whose breast
I hung, an infant.

Ay! and none beside ?
T'yrre. Four sons have fallen in the wars.

Brave dogs!
Tyrrel. She hath none left.

No daughter ?
Tyrrel. One.

I thought it.
Unkennel her.

Tyrrel. Grace ! pity! mercy on her !
Rufus. I will not have hot scents about my chase.

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