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I have read on a tombstone, I forget where, the, four words of quotation, full of suppressed and suggestive feeling :

Until the day dawn.

In Westminster Abbey Dean Stanley has placed a tablet in memory of Frederick Maurice :

He came to bear witness of the light.

In the cemetery at Stockport, over the remains of a very young child, is the quotation :

But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot: then He put forth his hand, and took her in again unto Him into the ark.

In Heaton Chapel Churchyard the mourning parents have inscribed over a child taken from them a few years ago :

We asked life of Thee, and Thou gavest it: even length

of days for ever and ever.

I have named this, the latest and present form, the Suppressed. It is needless to show how it exhibits the temper of the time. The indisposition to speak familiarly of sacred subjects, the underlying earnest craving for something to rest on in the far beyond, the sense of a mystery in Life and Death in presence of which we are but

Infants crying for the light,
And with no language but a cry,

are conditions of that mental and emotional atmosphere which the nineteenth century inhales at every breath, and not least by the graves of friends.

The Epitaph is more than a mere memorial of dead persons: more than an empty encomium, or a conventional tribute, or a vehicle for ostentatious display. These memorials of our fathers interest me strangely. They are unconscious and involuntary registers of the changes in our national history, and, as a student, I can never look at them without seeing again the features, the mental characteristics, of their vanished times. As a man, in spite of all that is absurd, or mean, or repulsive, in many of them, I cannot read without feeling them to be amongst the most pathetic expressions we have of the most universal and inexorable of the sorrows, and of the greatest of all the hopes, of men.






[Read February 4, 1878.]

NE of the drawbacks to the subject in hand is that to deal with it with any proper degree of care the introductory remarks must bear the largest proportion to the whole, for the simple reason that a large amount of ground has to be cleared before any comparison can be made betwixt north and south English names.

But I will be brief, nevertheless. The history of English baptismal names can boast two great battles. The first between Norman and Saxon, the second between English and Jew. Before the close of the twelfth century not more than ten or fifteen names used at the font before the Conquest were in familiar use. The Norman certainly was a conquest so far as nomenclature is concerned. The Saxon was revenged, however, by the introduction of an English Bible in 1526. Tyndal's Version was followed by other versions in 1535, 1538, 1557, and 1568. These gave the English people of the middle and lower classes for the first time a knowledge of the Scripture narratives as we know them. They were now read in the services of the Church throughout England in the Vulgar Tongue. What was the almost immediate result? At the beginning of Elizabeth's reign, the Norman font names, such as William, Guy, Robert, Dick, Harry, Roger, Miles, Hamond, Ingram, and Warin, ruled still supreme. Before her death they had received a mortal wound. More names became obsolete or archaic in Elizabeth's reign than any other reign of English

history. In a word, the Saxon received his revenge five hundred years after he had been outraged. His names of Goddard, and Guthlac, and Godwin, and Godier, had had to give way to Ingelram, and Payne, and Emery, and Hamond. And now Ingelram, and Payne, and Emery, and Hamond, had to make their curtsy and go; for Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, in the New Testament, not to mention the twelve patriarchs in the Old, began to knock each other about in the nursery-Jack gave up courting Gill, and Dinah and Hamor did all the flirting. Modern fashion has toned down the excesses of the Puritan, but he has left his mark. At this moment in England, apart from certain modern innovations, our baptismal nomenclature is a stream running from these two founts. But not alike everywhere. There are counties in England where the Norman can say: "" Here I hold ground and mean to hold it." There are tracts of country, on the other hand, where the Hebrew can say: "Here have I prevailed." Let me at the outset say that Lancashire and Yorkshire are peculiarly the property of the Hebrew. Having made the assertion, let me proceed to try to prove it.. I believe the causes are very easy of explanation. One thing I will say; they reveal an interesting page of English history in a matter of detail which has been almost wholly lost sight of in the more exciting narrative of its general politics.

Again, too, let me clear the ground. I use the term "Norman" names for simplicity's sake. By "Norman❞ names I mean not merely all that the Normans introduced, but also a large number that followed afterwards, only indirectly through them. "Baldwin," for instance, we owe to the Fleming. It will be easier, however, to use one term for all, and with this statement I pass on.

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It may be said, "but there were many Scripture names in use before the Reformation and the English Bible." Undoubtedly; but they are precisely those we should expect to be used. Not one of them do we owe to an English Bible. They are of three kinds.

I. Saints' names. The stories of the saints were carefully taught by the priesthood. As the festival of each saint came round the day was observed. Thus such names as Thomas, James, John, Matthew, Nicholas, Peter, Bartholomew, and Catharine were amongst the commonest in the land.

II. The Notable Names of Scripture-Joseph, Abel, Adam, Eve, Daniel, and even Noah-were often used at the font, simply because their stories had been rendered familiar to our villagers through the Mystery Plays, performed under the supervision of the Church, the precursors of our modern drama.

III. The Crusades gave us several of our most prominent Scripture names. John, Baptist, Ellis, and Jordan were all thus originated. Ellis was the usual term for Elias. Every crusader carried his bottle, wherein to bring home water from the Jordan for baptismal use. John the Baptist, the second Elias, was the central figure. Hence John, Baptist, Ellis, and even Jordan itself, came to be numbered among our most familiar names.

There, however, we end. The English Bible, in 1526, introduced a totally different class of sacred names. From that day all the out-of-the-way and hitherto-unknown names of Scripture came into use. In a word, the non-ecclesiastic names became popular. The Bible, posted up in every church, might be read of all; and all who could, probably did read it. This had an instant effect upon our nomenclature. Names familiar enough in our own day, but till then absolutely unknown, were brought forth from their hiding places and made subservient to the new impulse of the nation. Names associated with the more obscure books of the Bible begin now to be inscribed upon our registers. This is found to have been alike customary over the whole of England, north and south. The Proceedings in Chancery will show the effect to the close of Elizabeth's reign. Names like Dyna Bocher, Phennina Salmon, Sydrach Sympson, Dedimus Buckland, Ezekiel Guppye, Reuben Crane, Abacuke Harman, or Melchisadek Payne, meet one at every turn. The Domestic State Papers of James I. are still more largely tinged with this new influence. We now are brought face to face with Uriah Babington, Aquila Wykes, Hilkiah Crooke, Caleb Morley, Philemon Powell, Ananias Dyce, or Zachæus Ivitts. No particular district could claim these names as peculiar to itself. The spirit of a new kind of liberty was diffused throughout the length and breadth of England. The Bible was a new world of treasures, and each as he travelled through picked up that which pleased him most. This new custom reached its climax at the Commonwealth. "Cromwell," said Cleveland, "hath beat up his drums


clean through the Old Testament; you may know the genealogy of our Saviour by the names of his regiment."

The name of "Praise-God Barebone" brings us to a climax of another kind, and here we find ourselves obliged to enter into a short controversy. The very fact that the north of England was wholly untouched by it is only a reason for our briefly alluding to it.

We are all sensitive, and some of our Nonconformist friends have occasionally sent sore letters to Notes and Queries, or written indignant articles all to show that there were no Puritan eccentricities in baptismal nomenclature. This is a mistake. We cannot doubt the fact, because our registers declare it. Much better would it be to say: "There were eccentricities no doubt, but they began much earlier than is generally supposed, for they are found repeatedly in Elizabeth's reign, and most generally in James I.'s reign, while the Puritans were yet numbered among the members of the Church of England." We must, in fact, distinguish between Puritanism and Nonconformity, and ascribe the birth of this curious phase to the spirit of the former. I will give a few instances with the dates.

(1). Will of Theodore Crosland, 1665, Sen. Fell. Trin. Coll. Cam. To What-God-will Crosland, 40s.; and to his sonne WhatGod-will, £6. 13. 4.

(2). 1584. St. Matthew's, Friday Street, London, register of baptisms: Purifie, son of Mr. John Presse, parson.

(3). Abstinence Pougher. 1579. Leicester.

(4). Accepted Frewin. 1595. Sussex.

(46). Job-rak't-out-of-the-Ashes. Sept. 1, 1611. St. Helen's, Bishopsgate Street. Buried Sept. 2.

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(5). Be-steadfast Elgard. 1617. Warbleton. (6). Faint-not Dighurst. 1625. Warbleton. wood, Perseverance Green, Humility Hobbs, Remembrance Tibbett, Hope-still Foster were also baptized in Elizabeth's or James' reign.

Camden, writing in 1614, says that "Free-gift," "Reformation," "Earth," "Dust," "Ashes," "Delivery," "More-fruit," "Tribulation," "The-Lord-is-near," "More-trial," "Discipline," "Joy-again," "From-above" were fast becoming common, being given he adds, "with no evil meaning, but upon some singular and precise conceit,"

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