Born: Pierre du Bose, 1623, Bayeux; Mrs. Anne
Grant, author of Letters from the Mountains, 1755, Glasgow.
Died: Caius Caesar Agrippa,
4: James I (of Scotland),
murdered, 1437, Perth; Pope Julius I, 1513; Henry Grey, duke of Suffolk, beheaded,
1555: Robert Southwell, poet, executed at Tyburn, 1595: Secretary John Thurloc,
Lincoln's-inn; Benedict de Spinoza, philosopher, 1677; Pope Benedict XIII, 1730;
Eug�ne de Beauharnois, Duke of Leuchtenberg, 1824, Munich; Rev. Robert Hall,
1831, Bristol; Charles Rossi, R.A., sculptor, 1839.
Feast Day: Saints Daniel, priest, and Verde,
virgin, martyrs, 344. St. Severianus, bishop of Scythopolis, martyr, about 452.
of Landen, mayor of the palace, 640. Saints German, abbot, and Randaut, martyrs,
POPE JULIUS II
Julius de la Rovere, who ascended the papal throne in
1503, under the title of Julius II, is one of the most famous of all the Popes. He
founder of the church of St. Peter at Rome: but his most remarkable acts were of a
warlike character. During his papacy of ten years, he was continually engaged in
against the Venetians, to recover the Romagna, in which affair he was assisted by
the French and Germans: afterwards with the Germans against the French, in order
to get these
dangerous friends driven out of Italy. It was not till he had formed what he
called 'a holy league,' in which he united to himself Spain, England, Venice, and
the Swiss, that he
succeeded in his object. In this war, he assumed all the characters and duties of
a military commander, and few have exceeded him in spirit and resolution. As
examples of the
far-reaching policy of the man, he sent a splendid sword of state to the King of
Scotland (James IV): it still exists among the Scottish regalia, exhibiting the
of Pope Julius. In the great chest at Reikiavik cathedral in Iceland, are robes
which he sent to the bishop of that remote island.
Julius struck a medal to commemorate the great events
of his reign; it represented him in pontificals, with the tiara on his head, and a
his hand, chasing the French, and trampling the shield of France under his feet.
When Michael Angelo was making a statue of the pope, he said to him, 'Holy Father,
shall I place a
book in your hand?' 'No,' answered his Holiness, 'a sword rather�I know better how
to handle it.' He was indeed much more of a soldier than an ecclesiastic, in any
of the term. He was the first pope who allowed his beard to grow, in order to
inspire the greater respect among the faithful: a fashion in which he was followed
by Charles V and
other kings, and which spread through the courtiers to the people.
CAMERONIANS�EPIGRAM BY BURNS
In the churchyard of the parish of Balmaghie, in the
stewartry of Kirkcudbright, are the grave-stones of three persons who fell victims
boot-and-saddle mission sent into Scotland under the last Stuarts. One of these
rude monuments bears the following inscription:
'Here lyes David Halliday, portioner of Maifield, who
was shot upon the 21st of February 1685, and David Halliday, once in
was likewise shot upon the 11
th of July 1685, for their adherence to the
principles of Scotland's Covenanted Reformation.
Beneath This Stone Two David Hallidays
Do Lie, Whose Souls Now Sing Their Master's praise.
To know If Curious Passengers desire,
For What, By Whom, And Flow They Did Expire:
They Did Oppose This Nation's Perjury,
Nor Could 'they Join With Lordly Prelacy.
Indulging Favours From Christ's Enemies
Quenched Not Their Zeal. This Monument Then cries,
These Were The Causes, Not To Be Forgot,
Why They By Lag So Wickedly Were Shot:
One Name, One Cause, One Grave, One Heaven, Do Tie
Their Souls To That One God Eternally.'
The reverend gentleman who first printed this epitaph
in his parochial contribution to the Statistical Account of Scotland
(1794), made upon
it the unlucky remark�'The author of which no doubt supposed himself to have been
writing poetry'� unlucky when we consider the respect due to the earnestness of
these men in a
frame of religious opinion -which they thought right, and for which they had
surrendered life. Burns, -who got the Statistical Account out of the subscription
library of Dumfries,
experienced the just feeling of the occasion, and rebuked the writer for his
levity in a quatrain, which he inscribed on the margin, where it is still clearly
to be traced:
'The Solemn League and Covenant
Now brings a smile�now brings a tear�
But sacred Freedom too was theirs:
If thou'rt a slave, indulge thy sneer.'
It will perhaps he learned with some surprise that a
remnant of those Cameronians who felt unsatisfied with the Presbyterian settlement
Revolution, still exists in Scotland. Numbering about seven hundred persons,
scattered chiefly throughout the south-west provinces of Scotland, they continue
to decline taking the
oath of allegiance to the reigning monarch, or to accept of any public office,
holding that monarch and people have broken their pledge or covenant, by which
they were bound in
1614 to extirpate popery, prelacy, and other errors. Holding out their testimony
on this subject, they abstain from even exercising the elective franchise,
alleging that to do so
would be to sanction the aforesaid breach of covenant, to which they trace all the
evils that befall the land.
In May 1861, when this Reformed Presbytery met in
Edinburgh, a trying question came before then: there were young men in their body
anxious to join in the volunteer movement: some had even done it. There were also
some members who had exercised the elective franchise. To pursue a contemporary
lengthened discussion took place as to what should be done, and numerous reverend
members urged the modification of the testimony, as regards the assumed identity
representative and the voter, and as regards the interpretation of the oath of
allegiance. Highly patriotic and almost loyal views were expressed on the
Volunteer question, and
warm expressions of admiration and love for Her Majesty were uttered, and of
willingness to defend her person and protect the soil from invasion, so far as
their service could be
given apart from rendering fealty to the constitution. Another party in the Synod
denounced the proposal to modify the testimony, as a backsliding and defection
from the testimony.
It was ultimately resolved, by 30 to 11, to appoint a committee to inquire into
the soundness of the views contained in the testimony on the points mooted, and to
sessions from the obligation to expel members who entertained doubts and
difficulties on these matters, but meantime to recommend members of the Church to
abstain from voting at
elections. No similar recommendation having been made as to holding aloof from the
Volunteer movement, it may be presumed that that point has been conceded.'
FOLKLORE OF PLAYING CARDS
The long disputed questions respecting the period of
the invention of playing-cards, and whether they were first used for purposes of
gambling, do not fall within the prescribed limits of this paper. Its object is
simply to disclose�probably for the first time in print�the method or system of
playing-cards, constantly employed and implicitly depended upon, by many thousands
of our fellow-countrymen and women at the present day. The smallest village in
at least one 'card-cutter,' a person who pretends to presage future events by
studying the accidental combinations of a pack of cards. In London, the name of
is legion, some of greater, some of lesser repute and pretensions: some willing to
draw the curtains of destiny for a sixpence, others unapproachable except by a
fee of from one to three guineas. And it must not be supposed that all of those
persons are deliberate cheats: the majority of them 'believe in the cards' as
firmly as the silly
simpletons who employ and pay them. Moreover, besides those who make their
livelihood by 'card-cutting,' there are numbers of others, who, possessing a
smattering of the art, daily
refer to the paste-board oracles, to learn their fate and guide their conduct. And
when a ticklish point arises, one of those crones will consult another, and then,
if the two
cannot pierce the mysterious combination, they will call in a professed mistress
of the art, to throw a gleam of light on the darkness of the future. In short,
there are very few
individuals among the lower classes in England who do not know something
respecting the cards in their divinatory aspect, even if it be no more than to
distinguish the lucky from
the unlucky ones: and it is quite common to hear a person's complexion described
as being of a heart, or club colour. For these reasons, the writer�for the first
time as he
believes�has applied the well-known term folklore to this system of divination by
playing cards, so extensively known and so continually practised in the British
The Archduke of Austria Consulting a Fortune-Teller
The art of cartomancy, or divination by playing-cards,
dates from an early period of their obscure history. In the museum of Nantes there
painting, said to be by Van Eyck, representing Philippe le Bon, Archduke of
Austria, and subsequently King of Spain, consulting a fortune-teller by cards.
This picture, of which a
transcript is here given, cannot be of a later date than the fifteenth century.
When the art was introduced into England is unknown: probably, however, the
earliest printed notice
of it in this country is the following curious story, extracted from Rowland's
Judicial Astrology Condemned: 'Cuffe, an excellent Grecian, and secretary to
the Earl of
Essex, was told, twenty years before his death, that he should come to an untimely
end, at which Cuffe laughed, and in a scornful manner intreated the soothsayer to
shew him in
what manner he should come to his end, who condescended to him, and calling for
cards, intreated Cuffe to draw out of the pack any three which pleased him. He did
so, and drew
three knaves, and laid them on the table by the wizard's direction, who then told
him, if he desired to see the sum of his bad fortune, to take up those cards.
Cuffe, as he was
prescribed, took up the first card, and looking on it, he saw the portraiture of
himself cap-�-pie, having men encompassing him with bills and halberds. Then he
took up the second,
and there he saw the judge that sat upon him; and taking up the last card, he saw
Tyburn, the place of his execution, and
the hangman, at
which he laughed heartily. But many years after, being condemned, he remembered
and declared this prediction.'
The earliest work on cartomancy was written or
compiled by one Francesco Marcolini, and printed at Venice in 1540. There are many
Italian, and German works on the subject: but, as far as the writer's knowledge
extends, there is not an English one. The system of cartomancy, as laid down in
those works, is very
different from that used in England, both as regards the individual
interpretations of the cards, and the general method of reading or deciphering
their combinations. The English
system, however, is used in all British settlements over the globe, and has no
doubt been carried thither by soldiers' wives, who, as is well known to the
initiated, have ever been
considered peculiarly skilful practitioners of the art. Indeed, it is to a
soldier's wife that this present exposition of the art is to be attributed. Many
years ago the exigencies
of a military life, and the ravages of a pestilential epidemic, caused the writer,
then a puny but not very young child, to be left for many months in charge of a
wife, at an out-station in a distant land. The poor woman, though childless
herself, proved worthy of the confidence that was placed in her. She was too
ignorant to teach her
charge to read, yet she taught him the only accomplishment she possessed,�the art
of 'cutting cards,' as she termed it: the word cartomancy, in all probability, she
heard. And though it has not fallen to the writer's lot to practice the art
professionally, yet he has not forgotten it, as the following interpretations of
the cards will testify.
King. A man of very fair complexion; quick to auger,
but soon appeased.
Queen. A very fair woman, fond of gaiety, and a
Knave. A selfish and deceitful relative: fair and
Ten. Money. Success in honourable business. Nine. A
roving disposition, combined with honour able and successful adventure in
Eight. A happy prudent marriage, though rather late
Seven. Satire. Scandal. Unpleasant business matters.
Six. Marriage early in life, succeeded by
Five. Unexpected news, generally of a good kind.
Four. An unfaithful friend. A secret betrayed.
Trey. Domestic troubles, quarrels and unhappiness.
Deuce. A clandestine engagement. A card of caution.
Ace. A wedding ring. An offer of marriage.
King. A fair, but not very fair, complexioned man:
good natured, but rather obstinate, and, when angered, not easily appeased.
Queen. A woman of the same complexion as the king;
faithful, prudent, and affectionate.
Knave. An unselfish relative. A sincere friend. Ten.
Health and happiness, with many children. Nine. Wealth. High position in
Eight. Fine clothes. Pleasure. Mixing in good
society. Going to balls, theatres, &e.
Seven. Many good friends.
Six. Honourable courtship.
Five. A present.
Four. Domestic troubles caused by jealousy.
Trey. Poverty, shame and sorrow, caused by
imprudence. A card of caution.
Deuce. Success in life, position in society, and a
happy marriage, attained by virtuous discretion.
Ace. The house of the person consulting the decrees
King. A man of very dark complexion, ambitious and
Queen. A very dark complexioned woman, of malicious
disposition. A widow.
Knave. A lawyer. A person to be shunned.
Ten.. Disgrace: crime: imprisonment. Death on the
scaffold. A card of caution.
Nine. Grief: ruin: sickness: death.
Eight. Great danger from imprudence. A card of
Seven. Unexpected poverty caused by the death of a
relative. A lean sorrow.
Six. A child. To the unmarried a card of caution.
Five. Great danger from giving way to bad temper. A
card of caution.
Trey. A journey by land. Tears.
Deuce. A removal.
Ace. Death; malice; a duel; a general misfortune.
King. A dark complexioned man, though not so dark as
the king of spades: upright, true, and affectionate.
Queen. A woman of the same complexion, agreeable,
genteel, and witty.
Knave. A sincere, but rather hasty-tempered friend.
Ten. Unexpected wealth, through the death of a relative. A fat sorrow.
Nine. Danger caused by drunkenness. A card of
Eight. Danger from covetousness. A card of caution.
Seven. A prison. Danger arising from the opposite sex. A card of caution.
Six. Competence by hard-working industry. Five. A
happy, though not wealthy marriage. Four. Danger of misfortunes caused by
capricious temper. A card of caution. Trey. Quarrels. Or in reference to time
may signify three years, three mouths, three weeks, or three days. it also
denotes that a person
will be married more than once.
Deuce. Vexation, disappointment.
Ace. A letter.
The foregoing is merely the alphabet of the art: the
letters, as it were, of the sentences formed by the various combinations of the
general idea only can be given here of the manner in which those prophetic
sentences are formed. The person who desires to explore the hidden mysteries of
fate is represented, if a
male by the king, if a female by the queen, of the suit which accords with his or
her complexion. If a married woman consults the cards, the king of her own suit,
represents her husband: but with single women, the lover, either in esse or posse,
is represented by his own colour: and all cards, when representing persons, lose
their own normal
significations. There are exceptions, however, to these general rules. A man, no
matter what his complexion, if he wear uniform, even if he be the negro
cymbal-player in a
regimental band, can be represented by the king of diamonds:�note, the dress of
policemen and volunteers is not considered as uniform. On the other hand, a widow,
even if she be an
albiness, can be represented only by the queen of spades.
The ace of hearts always denoting the house of the
person consulting the decrees of fate, some general rules are applicable to it.
Thus the ace of
clubs signifying a letter, its position, either before or after the ace of hearts,
shows whether the letter is to be sent to or from the house. The ace of diamonds,
when close to
the ace of hearts, foretells a wedding in the house: but the ace of spades
betokens sickness and death.
The knaves represent the thoughts of their respective
kings and queens, and consequently the thoughts of the persons whom those kings
represent, in accordance with their complexions. For instance, a young lady of a
rather but not decidedly dark complexion, represented by the queen of clubs, when
cards, may be shocked to find her fair lover (the king of diamonds) flirting with
a wealthy widow (the queen of spades, attended by the ten of diamonds), but will
be reassured by
finding his thoughts (the knave of diamonds) in combination with a letter (ace of
clubs), a wedding ring (ace of diamonds), and her house (the ace of' hearts):
that, though he is actually flirting with the rich widow, he is, nevertheless,
thinking of sending a letter, with an offer of marriage, to the young lady
herself. And look, where
are her own thoughts, represented by the knave of clubs: they are far away with
the old lover, that dark man (king of spades) who, as is plainly shown by his
being attended by the
nine of diamonds, is prospering at the Australian diggings or elsewhere. Let us
shuffle the cards once more, and see if the dark man, at the distant diggings,
ever thinks of his
old flame, the club-complexioned young lady in England. No! he does not. Here are
his thoughts (the knave of spades) directed to this fair, but rather gay and
coquettish woman (the
queen of diamonds): they are separated but by a few hearts, one of them, the sixth
(honourable courtship), shewing the excellent understanding that exists between
them. Count, now,
from the six of hearts to the ninth card from it, and lo! it is a wedding ring
(the ace of diamonds): they will be married before the expiration of a
The general mode of manipulating the cards, when
fortune-telling, is very simple. The person, who is desirous to know the future,
the cards ad libitum, cuts the pack into three parts. The seer, then,
taking up these parts, lays the cards out, one by one, face upwards, upon the
table, sometimes in a
circular form, but oftener in rows consisting of nine cards in each row. Nine is
the mystical number. Every nine consecutive cards form a separate combination,
complete in itself:
yet, like a word in a sentence, no more than a fractional part of the grand scroll
of fate. Again, every card, something like the octaves in music, is en rapport
with the ninth
card from it: and these ninth cards form other complete combinations of nines, yet
parts of the general whole. The nine of hearts is termed the 'wish-card.' After
fortune has been told, a separate and different manipulation is performed, to
learn if the pryer into futurity will obtain a particular wish; and, from the
position of the
wish-card in the pack, the required answer is deduced.
In conclusion, a few words must be said on the
professional fortune-tellers. That they are, genrally speaking, wilful impostors
is perhaps true.
Yet, paradoxical though it may appear, the writer
feels bound to assert that those 'card-cutters ' whose practice lies among the
lowest classes of
society, really do a great deal of good. Few know what the lowest classes in our
large towns suffer when assailed by mental affliction. They are, in most
destitute of the consolations of religion, and incapable of sustained thought.
Accustomed to live from hand to mouth, their whole existence is bound up in the
present, and they
have no idea of the healing effects of time. Their ill-regulated passions brook no
self-denial, and a predominant clement of self rules their confused minds. They
know of no
future, they think no other human being ever suffered as they do. As they term it
themselves, 'they are upset.' They perceive no resource, no other remedy than a
leap from the
nearest bridge, or a dose of arsenic from the first chemist's shop. Haply some
friend or neighbour, one who has already suffered and been relieved, takes the
wretched creature to a
fortune-teller. The seeress at once perceives that her client is in distress, and,
shrewdly guessing the cause, pretends that she sees it all in the cards. Having
thus asserted her
superior intelligence, she affords her sympathy and consolation, and points to
hope and a happy future: blessed hope! though in the form of a greasy playing
card. The sufferer, if
not cured, is relieved. The lacerated wounds, if not healed, are at least dressed:
and, in all probability, a suicide or a murder is prevented. Scenes of this
character occur every
day in the meaner parts of London.
Unlike the witches of the olden time, the
fortune-tellers are generally esteemed and respected in the districts in which
they live and practise.
And, besides that which has already been stated, it will not be difficult to
discover sufficient reasons for this respect and esteem. The most ignorant and
depraved have ever a
lurking respect for morality and virtue; and the fortune-tellers are shrewd enough
to know and act upon this feeling. They always take care to point out what they
term 'the cards
of caution,' and impressively warn their clients from falling into the dangers
those cards foreshadow, but do not positively foretell, for the dangers may be
avoided by prudence
and circumspection. By referring to the preceding significations of the cards, it
will be seen that there are cards of caution against dangers arising from
covetousness, inconstancy, caprice, evil temper, illicit love, clandestine
engagements, &c. Consequently the fortune-tellers are the moralists, as well
as the consolers of the
lower classes. They supply a want that society either cannot or will not do. If
the great gulf which exists between rich and poor cannot be filled up, it would be
well to try if,
by any process of moral engineering, it could be bridged over.