British Popular Customs Present And Past - online book

A calendar of the traditional customs, practices & rituals of the British Isles.

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326                                      MID8UMMER DAY.                         [JJUNE 24 .
The ceremony of the Tynwald Hill is thus stated in the Lex Scripta of the Isle of Man, as given for law to Sir John Stanley, in 1417 :
" This is the constitution of old time, how yee should be governed on the Tinwald day. First you shall come thither in your royal array, as a king ought to do by the prerogatives and royalties of the land of Mann, and upon the hill of Tinwald sitt in a chair covered with a royal cloath and quishions, and your visage in the east, and your sword before you, holden with the point upward. Your Barrons in the third degree sitting beside you, and your beneficed men and your Deemsters before you sitting, and your clarke, your knight, esquires, and yeomen about you in the third degree, and the worthiest men in your land to be called in before your Deemsters, if you will ask anything of them, and to hear the government of your land and your will; and the Commons to stand without the circle of the hill, with three clearkes in their surplices, and your Deemsters shall call the coroner of Glanfaba, and he shall call in all the coroners of Man, and their yardes in their hands, with their weapons upon them, either sword or axe; and the moares, that is to witt, of every sheading; then the chief coroner, that is, the coroner of Glanfaba, shall make affence upon pain of life or lyme, that no man make a disturbance or stirr in the time Tinwald, or any murmur, or rising in the King's presence, upon pain of hanging and drawing; and then to proceed in your matters whatsoever you have to doe, in felonie or treason, or other matters that touch the government of your land of Manne."ódimming's History of the Isle of Man, 1848, pp. 185, 186.
"There is this solemn and charitable custom in ye Ch. of St. Mary-Hill, London. On the next Sunday after Midsummer Day, every year, the fellowship of the Porters of ye City of London, time out of mind, come to this church in ye morning, and whilst the Psalms are reading, they group two and two towards the rails of ye Communion table, where are set two basons; and there they make their offering, and so return to the body of y° Church again. After then the
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