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This con- junction, it was calculated, would happen in the year ; but we do not learn that anything happened in consequence, either to the nation, or to the caps or wigs of the clergy. From AT. Elias Ashmole com- puted it had happened fifteen times since the Conquest, and gave the principal events of those years. Fuller says, speaking after — "Hitherto this proverb had but intermitting truth at the most, seeing no constancy in sad casualties. But the sting, some will say. He then gives the years , , , , and quotes their events thus : i.
Queen Mary setteth up Popery, and martyreth Protestants, ii. The un- prosperous voyage to the Isle of Rees. The first cloud of trouble in Scotland, iv. The first complete year of the English Commonwealth or tyranny rather , which since, blessed be God, is returned to a monarchy, Hazlitt, Proverbs , p. Current Notes, January, , P- 3- When the black fleet of Norway is come and gone, England, build houses of lime and stone, For after, wars you shall have none. It is true that afterwards England built houses of lime and stone ; and our most handsome and artificial buildings though formerly far greater and stronger bear their date from the defeating of the Spanish fleet.
As for the remainder, ' After, wars you shall have none,' we find it false as to our civil wars by our woful experience. The clay lands in England are to those of a sandy soil as five to one, and equally or more fertile. If, from a wet season, the sandy lands succeed, and the clay lands miss, only one-fifth of the crop is produced that there would have been, had the contrary happened : this, as the proverb expresses, is a national misfortune.
When that is come and gone, etc. But when the clay doth feed the sand, Then it is well with Angleland. Whoso hath but a mouth, Shall ne'er in England suffer drouth. For, if he doth but open, it is a chance but it will rain in. True it is, we seldom suffer for want of rain ; and if there be any fault in the temper of our air, it is over-moistness, which inclines us to the scurvy and consumptions : diseases the one scarce known, the other but rare, in hotter countries.
Bedfordshire bull-dogs Hertfordshire hedgehogs, Buckinghams. Hazlitt, Proverbs, quoting Heywood's Proverbs , gives, "As plain as Dunstable by-way," adding — Quoted in a ballad printed about See Ancient Ballads and Broadsides, , p. Clarke JParcemiologia, , p. But it is there quoted differently. The meaning seems to be ironical, as Dunstable by-way was probably by no means plain. Arber, p. Despite the last evidence, I doubt an ironical meaning in the proverb, and fail to see such in either of the extracts. Isley, remote amidst the Berkshire downs, Claims three distinctions o'er her sister towns — Far famed for sheep and wool, tho' not for spinners.
For sportsmen, doctors, publicans, and sinners. One mile north-east of Newbury is Shaw House, built in by Thomas Dolman, a member of an old Yorkshire family who had settled in Newbury as a clothier, and, having made a fortune, retired here to live as a country gentleman. The proceeding was distasteful to the townsmen, and they expressed their feehngs in these lines : — Lord have mercy upon us miserable sinners, Thomas Dolman has built a new house.
And has turned away all his spinners. To which he retorted in the haughty lines still remaining over the gateway — Edentulus vescentium dentibus invidet Et oculos caprearum talpa contemnit. I Newbury has long been noted for its corn market. The old custom that everything must be paid for on delivery, gave rise to the local proverb — The farmer doth take back The money in his sack.
They that live and do abide Shall see the church fall in the Lyde. They are said to wear away the rock, which has occasioned the. Ashendon Hundred, West Bucks. I know no more than this. A nursery rhyme. Stow in the Wold is in Gloucestershire. Buckinghamshire bread and beef: Here, if you beat a bush, it is odds you'll start a thief.
Albans, did cut them down, because they yielded a place of refuge for thieves. The second line forms part of the proverb, and completes the couplet, such as it is ; but the two lines have been invariably separated. Hazlitt, Proverbs, p. When William conquer'd English ground, Bulstrode had per annum three hundred pound.
Historic and Allusive Arms : BO. If it hadn't been for Cobb-bush Hill, Thorpe castle would have stood there still ; Or— There would have been a castle at Thorpe still. Thorpe is called Thrup. There were three cooks of Colebrook, And they fell out with our cook, And all was for a pudding he took From the three cooks of Colebrook.
Great Marlow. Here is fish for catching, Corn for snatching, And wood for fatching. Reliqtcice Hearniance, ed. Grendon Underwood, The dirtiest town that ever stood. Grendon Underwood or Grendon-under-Bernwood. Aubrey declares that Shakspeare picked up some of the humour of his Midsummer Nighfs Dream from the constable, when passing a night here on his way to London. North and south of Stoke Hammond extend the three Brick- hills, all occupying high ground. The ground at Bow Brickhill rises to the height of feet. And glad was he to escape so. It is said that Sir Walter Scott obtained the title of his novel Ivanhoe from this rhyme.
The story goes that a Hampden struck the Black Prince a blow with his racket, when they quarrelled at tennis. There is no foundation for the statement. Neither of the three manors mentioned ever belonged to the Hampdens. Another rhyme on these places is — Tring, Wing, and Ivinghoe, Three dirty villages all in a row, And never without a rogue or two : Would you know the reason why? Leighton Buzzard isTiard by. The following, too, refers to these places : — Tring, Wing, and Ivinghoe, Three churches all of a row.
Sharp, New Gazetteer, A comparison the justice of which is by no means evident. The mayor of Altringham and the mayor of Over ; The one is a thatcher, the other a dauber. Altringham and Over are two petty corporations, whose poverty makes them ridiculous to their neighbours. A dauber is, I believe, one who makes the clay walls to cottages. Birkenhead, then a small town on the Cheshire side of the Mersey, lay on the north of the hundred of Wirrall ; whilst Hil- bree, a small island at the mouth of the Dee, was the extreme boundary of the hundred to the south.
There is no doubt that this tongue of land was a dense forest at one time. Cheshire bred, Strong i' th' arm, But weak i' th' head — CI. And Lincolnshire for boss. It seems the Cestrians have formerly been renowned for their valour. Fuller : Ray. Chester of Castria took the name, As if that Castria were the same. Helps to Discourse, Saturday Review, April 27, , p. The story goes that, early in the seventeenth century, the church Bible was so tattered that periodical collections were made to buy another.
Before this was accomplished, the town bear — kept for baiting — died, and the keeper requested help from the corporation. They granted him the " Bible money. Compare " The people of Clifton," etc. And Didsbury pans, Cheadle old kettles And Stockport old cans. Said of the bells. Between Hyde junction and Guidebridge, on the left, is Dun- kinfield Hall, an old half-timbered house with gables and ridge- posts.
This was once the seat of the Dunkinfield family, of whom was Colonel Dunkinfield, an active Parliamentary officer, who was one of the members of the court who tried the Earl of Derby. In , however, he had some differences with the Parliament, respecting a complaint made by the officers and soldiers of the inadequacy of the rewards given to them for suppressing the rebel- lion.
The dispute was soon settled, but in the mean time the Speaker, in his attempt to pass through a crowd of the malcon- tents, suffered the indignity of being stopped and sent back by Dunkinfield. This gave rise to a doggerel rhyme which became popular — Dunkinfield steel was never so true And as wise as ever was Toby, Lay in the purlieu. The cockpit avenue. To hinder the Speaker's go by. As long as Helsby hill wears a hood, The weather's never very good.
West Cheshire. A stigma attached to the first peal of bells. But the parish repaired this by putting up a peal of six musical bells. Peover is about two miles and three-quarters south of Knuts- ford. Leigh family. As many Leighs as fleas, Massies as asses, And Davenports as dogs' tails.
Sometimes " Leigh " is improperly written Lee ; this last, a dis- tinct family, never having been numerous in the county. I Middlewych is a pretty town, Seated in a valley. With a church and market-cross, And eke a bowling alley. All the men are loyal there. Pretty girls are plenty. Church and King, and down with the rump — There's not such a town in twenty. The stones of the market cross were removed in Compare " King's Sutton is," etc.
A Stockton chaise : Two women riding sideways. Higson's MS. Collection, No. Stopford law : No stake, no draw. This proverb is commonly used to signify that only such as contribute to the liquor are entitled to drink it. But another form is, " Lancashire law : no stake, no draw. Legends, , p. Swing 'em, swang 'em, bells at Wrangham, Three dogs in a string, hang 'em, hang 'em.
A hit at the Cheshire provincial pronunciation of the ng. HalHwell, p. God keep us from rocks and shelving sands, And save us from Breage and Germoe men's hands. Places notorious for smugglers. When Caradon's capped and St Cleer hooded Liskeard town will soon be flooded. Cornwall swab-pie, and Devon white-pot brings. And Leicester beans and bacon fit for kings. Scarcely a folk-rhyme, it occurs in Dr. King's Art of Cookery.
Cornwall will bear a shower every day. And two on Sunday. This saying holds true more especially of the high lands at St. Minver, etc. These three words are the dictionary of such surnames which are originally Cornish ; and though nouns in sense, I may fitly term them prepositions, i. Tre signifieth a town ; hence Tre-fry, Tre- lawny, Tre-vanion, etc. Pot signifieth an head; hence Polwhele.
Pen signifieth a top-, hence Pentire, Penrose, Penkevil, etc. Furnivall, , p. A Cornish antiquary. Banister, has amassed no less than names with Tre, with Pe? Kingston Down was supposed not only to be extremely rich in tin, but also to have in its bowels Cornish diamonds, vulgarly estimated superior to those of India. In Fuller's time the tin began to fail here ; having fallen, as he terms it, to a scant saving scarcity.
As to the diamonds, no one has yet judged it worth his while to dig for them. One day the devil, having nothing to do. Built a great hedge from Lerrin to Looe. At the head of the inlet Trelawne Mill , on the wooded heights, iare the remains of a circular encampment connected with a [rampart or raised bank, which extends from this point through , Lanreath to the large earthwork on Bury Down, isolating a tract I of country on the coast.
It was either erected by the Danes, or was the ancient line of demarcation between the Saxons and Britons. At Lanreath, in Borlase's time, it was seven feet high and twenty feet wide. It proceeds in a straight line up and down hill indifferently for at least seven miles, and is properly called the Giant's Hedge. It is, of course, assigned to the devil. See rhyme. Old Penryners, up in the tree, Looking as whist as whist can be ; Falmouth boys, as strong as oak.
Knock them down with a single stroke. Redruth boys, Redruth boys, up in the tree, Looking as whist as whist can be ; lUogan boys, Illogan boys, up in the oak, Knocking down Redruth boys at every stroke. And vice versa. For generations an annual gathering of the Friends was held at St. Austell, at about hay harvest, and it was so unilormly wet that it became proverbial, and the above rhyme was in everybody's mouth.
When with panniers astride A pack-horse can ride Through St. Levan's stone. The world will be done. The stone is a great rock in the churchyard at St. The church of Talland a village on the south coast of Corn- wall is not in the centre of the parish, but near the sea. A legend accounts for its position thus : It was begun at a spot called Pulpit, but each night a voice was heard saying — If you will my wish fulfil.
If that glass either break or fall, Farewell the luck of Eden Hall. Eden Hall, in Cumberland, the residence of the Musgraves, whose fortunes were supposed to depend on this glass. Hazlitt, i. Ritson gives the tradition in his Fairy Tales, 1 83 1, pp. Cuthbert's Well, in Eden Hall garden, when the fairies left their drinking glass on the well to enjoy a little fun.
The butler seized the glass, and ran off with it. Phrase and Fable. The lines of prophecy were uttered by the fairies. Uhland, the German poet, has a ballad on the subject, in which he makes the young lord say that a water sprite wrote the words in the glass when presenting it to his ancestor. He then tries the strength ot the glass, and the prophecy at the same time, by successive blows.
The goblet flies, and in storm the foe that have scaled the castle during the revel ; the young lord is slain, and the butler, seeking amongst the ruins next day, finds his master's fleshless hand grasping still the stem of the goblet. Longfellow translated the ballad, and adds, "The goblet is in the possession of Sir Christopher Musgrave, Bart, of Eden Hall, Cumberland, and is not so entirely shattered as the ballad leaves it.
If Skiddaw hath a cap, Scruffel wots full well of that— L. Scruffel is in Annandale in Scotland. When the former is capped with clouds, rain will soon fall on the latter. Collec- tion, No. The rhyme above is the more correct, I think. Compare " Ingleboro', Pendle, and Penigent," etc. Up now, ace, and down with the trey, Or Wardhall's gone for ever and aye. Another version occurs, ibid.. The place referred to is Wardal, in Cumberland, between Egre- mont and Ambleside, in the parish of Seabraham. Higson quotes Whellan's Cumberland and Westmoreland, p.
See BC. Barrow's big boulders, Repton merry bells, Foremark's cracked pancheons and Newton eggshells. When Codnor's Pond runs dry. The Lords may say good-bye. At Codnor Park there is a large pond, believed never to fail. Derby bells. Pancakes and fritters, say All Saints' and St. Peter's, When will the ball come? Alkmun ; At two they will throw, says Saint Werabo, Oh!
Song on the bells of Derby, on football morning ; a custom now discontinued, ay. See Northampton, etc. Derbyshire born, Derbyshire bred, Strong i' th' arm, and thick i' th' head. Folklore Journal, vol. Com- pare " Cheshire bred ;" " Manchester bred. I 7 Hardwick Hall, More window than wall. The outside of Hardwick Hall has so many windows that it looks like a lantern. Hardwick Hall, the seat of the Duke of Devonshire, was one of the mansions erected by the celebrated " Bess of Hardwick.
Collection, ex rel. Adjoining Little Barlow is a very large bog called Leechfield, or Leashfield — from which two considerable brooks take their rise — supposed to occupy five or six hundred acres, being between three and four miles in circumference. There is a tradition that a town formerly stood here.
Glover's Derbyshire, ii. Ding-dong for Timington, Ten bells at Birmingham, Two slippers and a trash. Say the bells of Moneyash ; We will ring 'em down. It is an elevated camp above the village of Churchill, and, curiously enough, a similar rhyme belonged to it in Leland's time — If Dolberi digged were, Of gold should be the share. Westcot's Hist. Crediton was a market town When Exeter was a fuzzy down. In the vernacular — Kerdon was a market town When Ex'tr was a vuzzy down. A somewhat similar saying is extant relative to Plymouth and Plympton ; but there may very well be some truth in the ancient prosperity of what is now merely a large straggling hamlet, since Crediton was the seat of the extinct bishopric of Devon and Corn- wall.
Croker, etc. Croker, Crewis, and Coplestone, When the Conqueror came, were at home. Ancient Saxon families, co. It is subject to frequent and sudden inundations. BE, Notes and Queries, ist sen, ii. He that will not merry be With a pretty girl by the fire, I wish he was atop of Dartemoor, A-stugged in the mire. Dartmoor is the Devonshire Brocken. The Germans wish a troublesome neighbour on the top of the Brocken. Between this stone and Fardell Hall Lies as much money as the devil can haul. The tradition makes the inscription refer to a treasure buried by Raleigh.
When Haldon hath a hat Kenton may beware a skat. Great Haldon, on whose crest a lowering cloud is considered threatening. Kenton is a mile and a half right of Powderham. BR, 79 : CE. In CY. The people are poor at Hatherleigh Moor, And so they have been for ever and ever. Hawley family.
The family of Haule or Hauley, eminent merchants, were long resident in Dartmouth ; their mercantile transactions were so extensive that they give rise to the lines still remembered in connection with their trade in this town. I When Hey tor rock wears a hood Manxton folk may expect no good.
First hang and draw, Then hear the cause by Lydford law. This proverb is supposed to allude to some absurd determination made by the mayor and court of this corporation, who were formerly, in general, but mean and illiterate persons. A saying of remote antiquity. Browne had a facetious poem on the subject in Latisdowne MS. Soc, 19 — Now be the lawe of LydfTord, in lond ne in water, Thilke lewde ladde ouzte evyll to thryve.
Topsham, thou'rt a pretty town, I think thee very pretty, And when I come to wear the crown, I'll make of thee a city. Said by the Duke of Monmouth' when he visited the port oi Exeter. Quarter Sessions from Elizabeth to Anne, by A. Hamilton : CY. Topsham is a seaport, at the confluence of the Clyst and Exe, three miles and a quarter south-south-east of Exeter. Here I sit and here I rest, And this town shall be called Totnes. Brutus of Troy is said to have given the town its name thus.
Ubber lubbers, Harford gads, Comwood robbers, and Ivybridge lads. A variation gives Brent and Buckfastleigh instead of two latter. The rhyme is scarcely polite. See Wool. Knolton bell is stole, And thrown into White Mill Hole. Lewesden Hill and Pillesdon Pen this latter remarkable for the peaked form of its southern extremity are two conspicuous eminences of greensward, remarkable for their likeness to one another when viewed from certain points, about three miles west of Beaminster.
Sailors, whom they serve as landmarks, call them the Cow and the Calf. The former is wholly, the latter nearly all, in the parish of Broad Windsor. The proverb is commonly spoken of persons who are near neighbours, but neither relations nor acquaintance. If Pool was a fishpool and the men of Pool fish, There'd be a pool for the devil and fish for his dish.
This satyrical distich was written a long time ago. Pool is, at present, a respectable place, and has in it several respectable merchants trading to Newfoundland. On the contrary, it was, and is, notorious for its ill-livers. Pool is the principal seaport of the county. From its position in a labyrinth of creeks it afforded shelter to questionable sea- characters. Wool streams and Combe wells, Fordington cuckolds stole Bindon bells.
Bindon Abbey, a mile and a half east of Wool Station. A story goes that the twelve bells were stolen by night, and are now in the churches of Wool, Combe, and Fordington. Used by boys when they are quarrelling or playing at soldiers. Bowes during the Rising of the North Notes and Queries. Returning, he repented, and the story was oddly preserved in one of the windows of St. Andrew's, Auckland, where, inscribed on a belt encircling the arms of Bellasis, were the lines, etc. The proper reading, still remembered in the neighbourhood, runs — Johnny tuth' Bellas, daft was thy poll, When thou changed Bellas for Henknole.
Brackenbury family. The Brackenburys of Sellaby came over with the Conqueror, which, with an allusion to their crest — a black lion under an oak tree — gave rise to the proverb — The black lion under the oaken tree Made the Normans fight and the Saxons flee. Even wood, Where straight tree never stood. Evenwood Stat, a village surrounded by collieries, high on a hill above the river Gaunless. Its exposed position gave rise to proverb. John Lively, Vicar of Kelloe, Had seven daughters and never a fellow.
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An equivocal rhyme of the bishopric, which may either mean that the parson of the sixteenth century had no son, or that he had no equal in learning, etc. He certainly, however, mentions no son in his will, in which he leaves to his daughter Elizabeth his best gold ring with a deatKs head in it compare Love's Labour's Lost, v. Another version of the proverb reads, " six daughters," and indeed seven is often merely a conventional number. Northumberland, unfavourably for themselves, to Henknoull. Sharpe's Chronicon Mirabile and BO.
Or Mainsforth farewell to corn and hay. In the parish of Tolleshunt Knights, in Essex, there is an uncultivated field, and at some distance from it an old manorhouse known as Barn Hall. The legend is that the hall was intended to have been built on the first-named spot, but the devil destroyed in the night-time all that had been done in the day.
A knight, with two dogs, was sent to watch, and when the evil one came there was a sharp tussle, but of course ApoUyon was vanquished by Greatheart. The irritated demon thereupon snatched a beam from the building, and hurled it through the darkness, exclaiming — Wheresoe'er this beam shall fall, There shall stand Bam Hall. The devil further declared that, on the good knight's death, he would have him, whether he was buried in the church or out of it.
To avoid the penal fires thus threatened, the valiant warrior was buried in the wall, half in and half out. Axon, Stray Chapters in Lit. Folklore and Archeology, 8vo, , pp. Baron Park is fruitful and fat, Howfield is better than that, Copt Hall is best of them all. Yet Hubbledown may wear the crown. Ellis, p. Braintree for the pure, and Booking for the poor ; Cogshall for the jeering town, and Kelvedon for the whore.
Ray : AU.
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The tendency of this proverb is to compliment the inhabitants of Braintree at the expense of the three other places. Ray: BC. Braintree, eleven miles north-by-east from Chelmsford. Bocking, one mile north from Braintree. There is good ale At St. James Chignele. Chio:nell is three miles and a half north-west from Chelmsford. Who fetcheth a wife from Dunmow Carrieth home two sides of a sow. He who repents him not of his marriage, sleeping or wakin', In a year and a day May lawfully go to Dunmow, and fetch a gammon of bacon. In the manuscript this is quoted as a common proverb or saying, and I suppose that it is intended for a sort of rude rhyme.
I give all that I could find on the subject in my Popular Antiquities, , where I point out that the usage is not pecuHar to Essex. Brewer, Diet. Phrase and Fable, says the custom was founded by Juga, a noble lady, in iiii, and restored by Robert de Fitzwalter in p. Essex stiles, Kentish miles, Norfolk wiles, ,, a man ,. Two very different explanations are given of that part of this ungrammatical proverb which relates to Essex.
The first says the enclosures in Essex are very small, and the stiles, consequently, very frequent ; and being also very high and bad, are extremely troiiblesome to strangers. The other is, that by stiles are meant narrow bridges, such as are laid between marsh and marsh in the hundreds of this county, only jocularly called stiles, as the loose stone walls in Derbyshire are ludicrously called hedges. Kentish roads were impassable, and hence the way seemed longer. Norfolk is said to have been remarkable for litigation, and the quirks and quibbles of its attornies.
As to Norfolk wiles, I should say that this expression is to be understood satiri- cally, as Norfolk has never been remarkable for the astuteness of its inhabitants, but quite the contrary. But, as Mr. Skeat edit, of Pegge's Kentidsms, etc. Essex ful of god hosevyfes, Middlesex ful of stryves, Kentshire hoot as fyre, Souseks ful of dyrt and myre. Leland, Itinerary, vol. Ugly church, ugly steeple.
Ugly parson, ugly people. The village of Ugley. Beggarly Bisley, Strutting Stroud, Hampton poor. And Painswick proud. Staunton, pronounced Stawn; Aston, pronounced Awn. These are places in Gloucestershire, Worcestershire, and Somersetshire. Stanway, three miles north-east of Winchcomb.
Childswickham, Lower Kiftsgate hundred, four miles south-east of Evesham. Wickhamford, Upper Blackenhurst hundred, South-east Worcestershire, two miles south-east of Eves- ham. Badsey, ditto. Elton family.
In Burke's Peerage, etc. Abraham Elton, Esq. We'll do as they do at Quern ; What we do not to-day, we must do in the morn. In East Anglia they say — You must do as they do at Hoo ; What you can't do in one day, you must do in two. Severn river. A proverbial rithme observed as infallible by the inhabitants on the Severne side : — If it raineth when it doth flow, Then yoke your oxe and goe to plough ; But if it raineth when it doth ebb. Then unyoke your ox and goe to bed. Aubrey, Natural History of Wilts, p.
Stow-in-the-Wold was first built in a wood ; hence the word wold, Sax. A traditional couplet runs — A squirrel can hop from Swell to Stowe Without resting his foot or wetting his toe. Murray's Handbook for Gloucestershire, , p. The Trades Have always the wind in their faces.
Fuller, Worthies, says, " This is founded on a fond and false tradition, which reports that ever since Sir William Tracy was most active among the four knights which killed Thomas Becket, it is imposed on the Tracies for miraculous penance, that, whether they go by land or by water, the wind is ever in their faces. Hampshire hog : Berkshire dog Yorkshire bite : London white. Hampshire ground requires every day in the week A shower of rain And on Sunday twain. Compare " Cornwall will bear," etc. WicKHAM name.
Manners maketh the man, Quoth WiUiam of Wickham. William of Wickham, Bishop of Winchester, was founder of Winchester College in this county, and of New College, Oxford ; he was also famous for his skill in architecture.
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This adage was his motto, generally inscribed on places of his foundation. A dish and a spoon, Say the bells of Bish Frome. Come, old man, and shave your beard, Say the bells of Bromyard. Dirty Cowarne, wooden steeple, Crack'd bell, wicked people. The Devil would have Hope and Dinmore and all. Not far from Weobley, co. Hereford, is a high hill, topped by a clump of trees, called Ladylift Clump. When obscured, wet is expected. Trip a trap a Trencher, Say the bells of Lemster. Luston short and Luston long. At every house a tump of dung, — Some two, some three. The dirtiest place you ever did see.
Blessed is the eye That is between Severn and Wye. According to BM. These are two places fruitful in the country, saith Mr. There is another version — " Dirty Tarrington, Lousy Stoke," etc. Poor Weobley, proud people. Low church, high steeple. No heart can think, nor tongue can tell, What lies between Brockley Hill and Pennywell.
Brockley Hill lies near Elstree, in Hertfordshire, and Pennywell is the name of a parcel of closes in the neighbourhood. See Stukely's Itinerary, Cur. The distich alludes to the quantity of old coins found near these places. AV, If you wish to go into Hertfordshire, Hitch a little nearer to the fire. These lines are displayed on a beam separating Bedfordshire from an insulated portion of Hertfordshire in the drawing-room of the late parsonage house at Mappershall, near Shefford. See Hunter's Haltamshire Glossary, p. The point seems to be in the play on the word Hertfordshire quasi Hearthfordshire.
They who buy a house in Hertfordshire Pay three years' purchase for the air. Naughty Ashford, surly Wye, Poor Kennington hard by. If you'll live a little while, Go to Bapchild. Bapchild is indeed a bad and unhealthy situation. It is adjacent to Tong, which adjoins Teynham. At Bonington a lawyer. This relates to the worshipful family of the Boises, of which four several branches were flourishing at once at those seats here mentioned. So said because the church is "very unusual in proportion. It refers to Cuxton, near Rochester. Deal, Dover, and Harwich, The devil gave with his daughter in marriage ; And, by a codicil to his will, CO He added Helv t and the Brill, oe " A satyrical squib thrown at the inkeepers of those places, in return for the many impositions practised on travellers, as well natives as strangers.
Deal savages, Canterbury parrots, Dover sharps, and Sandwich carrots. Gardening first used as a trade at Sandwich. When it's dark in Dover It's dark all the world over. Dover, Sandwich, and Winchelsea, Rumney and Rye, the five ports be. The Cinque Ports. Shotover men are the mackerel fishers, and a north-east wind is reckoned at Dover a good wind for them.
There was a vale whale came down the flood ; Folsteners Folkstone men couldn't catch un, but Doverers dud. He that rideth into the hundred of Hoo, Besides pilfering seamen, shall find dirt enou'. Hollinshed the historian who was a Kent man saith that Hoo in his time was nearly an island, and of the Hundred of Hoo the people had this rhyme or proverb. North of Higham stretches away a dreary ague-haunted district, formed by tne longue of low chalk land, surrounded by a broad hem of marsh, lying between the Thames and the Medway.
The greater part of this is comprised in the hundred of Hoo. Kentshire Hot as fire. This county is remarkably hot, on account of its chalk-hills and chalky, as well as gravelly, roads. A knight of Cales, a gentleman of Wales, And a laird of the north countree ; A yeoman of Kent with his yearly rent Will buy them out all three.
Is able to buy all three. A corrupt version is — English lord, German count, and French marquis ; A yeoman of Kent is worth them all three. Ray adds — Cales Cadiz knights were made in that voyage by Robert, Earl of Essex, to the number of sixty ; whereof though many of great birth some were of low fortunes : and therefore Queen Elizabeth was half offended with the Earl for making knighthood so common Of the numerousness of Welch gentlemen nothing need be said, the Welch generally pretending to gentility.
Northern lairds are such who, in Scotland, hold lands in chief of the king, whereof some have no great revenue. So that a Kentish yeoman by the help of a hyperbole may countervail, etc. Yeomen contracted for geinen-mien, from getnein, signifying common in Old Dutch ; so that a yeoman is a commoner, one undignified with any title of gentility : a condition of people almost peculiar to England ; and which is, in effect, the basis of all the nation. He that will not live long, Let him dwell at Murston, Tenham, or Tong. Tenham has a sickly situation.
Therefore the ensuing lines are probably in banter — If you'd live long, Go to Tenham or Tong. Tong lies in the heart of the stronghold of ague on either side of the Swale. The soil is throughout very rich, but this is the Kentish region of wealth without health. Sawtrey by the way, Now a grange that was an abbey. Kempe's Loseley MSS. Lottery of Sutton for mutton, Kirby for beef, South Darne for gingerbread, Dartford for a thief. At Dartford, Wat Tyler commenced the insurrection by killing the poll-tax collector, perhaps one or the other is meant by the "thief," p.
It is a town of some importance, lying between two steep hills, at the place where the Roman road crossed. The river Darenth from this place opens in a broad navigable creek to the Thames. See also, under Sutton : counties Surrey, Warwick, York. Between Wickham and Welling, There's not an honest man dwelling.
And I'll tell you the reason why, Because Shooter's Hill's so nigh. Shooter's Hill was much frequented by highwaymen. Proud Ashton, poor people, Ten bells, and an old crackt steeple. In the local vernacular the verses run — Proud Ash'on, poor people ; Ten bells, un' un owd crackt steeple. Higson remarks to me : " This must have originated many years ago, as the church was damaged by a thunderstorm in January, 1 79 1, and the tower rebuilt in No one but an Ashtonian born and bred can pronounce the name of their town as they do — it is between Ash'on and Esh'n.
I Or- Sweet Jesu, for thy mercy's sake. And for thy bitter passion. And from Sir Ralph of Assheton. This rhyme is traditionally known in the north of England, and refers, it is said, to Sir Ralph Ashton, who, in the latter part of the fifteenth century, exercised great severity as vice-constable. According to another story, the custom commemorates the valiant actions of Thomas Ashton at the battle of Neville's Cross. See Hazlitt's edit, of Brand's Anttquzttes, ; ii.
Axon's pamphlet. The Black Knight of Ashton.
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As early as 5 Henry VI. Th' Abbey Hey bulldogs drest i' rags, Dar' no com' out to th' Gorton lads. Gorton is in Lancashire, three and a half miles on the east- south-east of Manchester. Halifax is made of wax, And Heptonstall of stone ; In Halifax there's many a pretty girl. In Heptonstall there's none. He who would see old Hoghton right. Must view it by the pale moonlight.
Hoghton is near Blackburn ; those who are familiar with the locality, will have no difficulty in comprehending the allusion. Perhaps the lines are satirical. The distich seems to be a slightly modified form of Scott's opening lines on Melrose. Hoo, so spelt for the sake of the rhythm, is Hool in Cheshire. Lancashire places are meant throughout the rhyme, I believe.
However, the following version may be true — Pendle Hill, Penygent, and little Ingleborough, Are three such hills as you'll not find by seeking England thorough. See Pendle, in this county. Ingleborough and Penygent are near Settle in Yorkshire. The Kent and the Keer, Have parted many a good man and his meer mare. Towards the end of Morecambe Bay the waters shoal very much, and an immense extent of sand and mud is left high and dry at low water. These are independent of similar burials in the churchyards of adjacent parishes on both sides of the bay. Skeat, I see, has inserted this in his edition of Pegge's Kenlicisms, and in the note he has explained Keer to mean pro- bably care.
Lancashire law, No stakes, no draw. Quoted by losers when no stakes are lodged. He that would take a Lancashire man at any time or tide, Must bait his hook with a good egg-pie, or an apple with a red side. This is given with a slight variation in Wit and Drollery, , p. It occurs in what is called " The Lancashire Song," apparently a mere string of whimsical scraps.
Leyland is a village of Lancashire, not far from Chorley. And thou shalt be called The church of Leyland. Leyland Church stands on an eminence at the east side of the village. The ancient tower is still standing, but the body of the church is modern. Manchester bred, Long in the arms, and short in the head. Compare " Cheshire bred," and " Derbyshire born," etc. These are the names of small streams, which flow into the larger one, and so lose their individuality.
The western border of High Furness, where the chapelry of Seathwaite extends along the Lancashire side of the river Duddon, in the upper part of its course, is wild of aspect, and fragmentary of foundation. The soil and climate unfavourable to fine varieties of grain. The high grounds are all sheep pastures, and the few small crofts of stone-encumbered ground, divided by drywalls, and attached to each tenement, are devoted to the growth of summer grass and winter fodder for the healthy cattle, and of oats and potatoes for the equally hardy families.
This limited range of agricultural produce is remarked upon in two jingling verses, wherein nearly all the farms in Seathwaite are mentioned — Newfield and Nettleslack, HoUinhouse and Longhouse, Turner Hall and Under Crag, Beckhouse, Thrang, and Tonghouse, Browside, Trontwell, Hinginghouse, Dalehead and Cockley Beck, You may gedder o' t' wheat they grow, And nivver fill a peck.
See under Didsbury, co. In Oldham brewis wet and warm, And Rochdale puddings there's no harm. These three hills are in sight of each other. See " Ingle- borough," etc. When Pendle wears its wooly cap, The farmers all may take a nap. Because rain is threatened. Once a wood, then a sea, Now a moss, and e'er will be. This refers to Pilling Moss, in Lancashire.
See Manners and Customs of Westmoreland, p. There is another saying, " God's grace and Pilling Moss are boundless. Prescot, Huyton, and merry Childow, Three poor churches all in a row, Prescot for mugs, Huyton for ploydes, Childow for ringing and singing besides. Preston for panmugs, Huyton for pride, Childwall for toiling, and playing beside. Proud Preston, poor people, High church tower , low steeple. It is written upon a wall in Rome, Ribchester was as rich as any town in Christendom. Or else, on some one boasting of former importance he cannot prove, to quote the circumstance of the inscription on the Roman wall, by way of a ridiculous parallel.
Some monumental wall, whereon the names of the principal places were enscribed then subject to the Roman empire. And probably this Ribchester was anciently some eminent colony ; as by pieces of coins and columns there daily digged out doth appear. However, at this day, it is not so much as a market town ; but whether decayed by age, or destroyed by accident, is uncertain.
It is called Ribchester because situated on the river Ribble. Ray : BC. Hardwick having discovered the site of Coccium at Walton le dale. Gibson, Esq. A mist about the top of that hill is a sign of foul weather. Riving pike is the summit of a lofty elevation near Rivington, a town in Lancashire, in the parish of Bolton ; the Pike is feet above the level of the sea.
See " Newfield and Nettleslack. Maudlin, maudlin, we began. And built t' church steeple t' wrang side on. The steeple, says Mr. Higson, is built on the north side, at the junction of nave and chancel. The church at little Winwick, It stands upon a sod, And when a maid is married there, The steeple gives a nod. To which may be added a modern verse — Alas! Their rapid flight have flown, Since on that high and lofty spire There's moved a single stone.
In and out, Like Bellesdon, I wot. Probably a scattered irregular village. That is, when the clouds hang over the tower of Bever castle, it is prognostic of much rain, which is extremely unfavourable to that fruitful vale lying in the three counties Leicestershire, Lincoln- shire, Nottinghamshire. Then, American counterclaimed, saying Dad broke the contract by improperly using the companion feature.
In April , an American employee had approached Dad and asked him to stop, as security measures around flying had clearly started to shift after September So he stopped. He was the first person I knew to have a cell phone, and then the first person I knew to get a BlackBerry and remains one of the last to have one.
Then, the Court of Appeals affirmed. Dad had lost. The appeal stayed until American exited bankruptcy in December And the final chunks of paperwork were filed in early But it never really quieted. That my mother, two uncles and an aunt all went in for depositions, or that hundreds of legal hours and thousands of dollars and documents unfolded. This spring, after gaining access to the court documents, and reading over 80 documents in full, I call Dad as I leave my writing space at p.
I say this is clear: What American did to interpret fraud was out of line. During the same time period, he booked 2, flight segments for travel companions, and 2, were either canceled or a no-show. I tell him I need to maintain my journalistic balance and integrity. Under those terms I bought the extra seat.
Anyone I wanted. He wanted to be alone, just as had always been his booking practice on many airlines, even well before the AAirpass days. He liked his space. He liked access to bringing extra carry-on bags. He liked some privacy. The airplane was his home. He was at home.
People buy extra and empty seats all the time. A permanent extra seat for life — whether another human was in it or not. Here is why. I was up and [alone] in my home office and bored. So I would call the number for the AAirpass desk and talk to the agent about the news or the weather or about Paris or little London. Then, after an hour of nothing they had to hang up. So I would make a reservation and ask them to fax it to me.
Then the next day I would take the fax and cancel the reservation. I needed someone to talk to at midnight. The number was open. His understanding was that fraudulent behavior was limited to giving the AAirpass to someone else — which he never did. I still have never ever ever booked any reservation online.
I always use the phone. So their own agents never stopped me from anything. Real depression. On his iPad, he FaceTimes me from his hotel room. It took away my hobby. I thought that I could go to Sweden for the weekend in July and pick up flowers when I was They stole the very thing that caused me to give them a half a million dollars in the first place. And a half a million dollars is probably like 5 million dollars today. And they did it maliciously. So maybe someplace in between.
Or maybe my mind goes back and forth. Of course, racial and class privilege, body ability, access to health care and support, and other privileges obviously play a massive role. But the inside spectacle of pain is traumatic across the board. So it was a huge loss, and it was shitty timing because it gave our family an opportunity to still travel, to find the joy in travel. Hong Kong. New York. We inherit things from our kin. As an internationally touring poet, performer and educator, when I am on tour, I am alive. I know how to operate an airport or bus terminal or Amtrak station or a rental car.
Natalie does too. People have come to me about their hatred or fear of flying. A certain amount of time in the sky that belongs only to you. Regardless of your seat. Of course, I recognize that because I was socialized to fly in first class, my feelings about travel are biased. Even though I fly economy now, even though my eyes can tell the difference, somehow my body does not. I am in the air.
I am free above the world. My best friend, Chloe, recently asked me what my favorite airline is, given all the travel I do. I feel nostalgia. Fargo is on my bucket list! I am yelping at this point. Literally hitting my leg and chair audibly. Suddenly, I feel like Dad must have felt talking to her — laughing, joking, dreaming up trips. Some people inherit money. Or trauma. A host of other things. I thank her and wish her a beautiful day.
From a near-death experience that shook a family to its core to a shocking proposition in a therapist's office, Believable explores how our stories define who we are. I n each episode of Believable , we dive into a personal, eye-opening story where narratives conflict, and different perspectives about the truth collide. These are complex and suspenseful audio stories that expand to say something larger about the role of narrative and identity in our lives. Episode 1 of Believable , which is now live, is about a woman who bounced around state institutions and foster homes as a child, always wishing for the family she never had.
Until one day she finally gets what she asked for — and then some. How a brilliant scientist went from discovering a mother lode of treasure at the bottom of the sea to fleeing from authorities with suitcases full of cash. Thompson had long insisted that he suffers from neurological problems and chronic fatigue syndrome, which impairs his memory, and that his meandering explanations were a symptom of the distress foisted upon him.
Thompson was genuinely sickened and overwhelmed, however, and he found it extremely frustrating that nobody seemed to take his condition seriously. In the 30 years since, the weight of the find had upended partnerships, ended his marriage, and set loose the specter of greed. What began as a valiant mission of science turned into something else entirely. O n September 11, , about 7, feet beneath the surface of the Atlantic Ocean, a set of glowing orbs moved smoothly through the darkness and illuminated the mysterious world below.
That far down there are few currents, the water is close to freezing, and it is almost pitch black. The only light typically comes from the bioluminescent creatures that float by like ghosts, but in this case the lights were from a six-ton, unmanned vessel. The Nemo , looking like an industrial freezer with two robotic arms, made a small adjustment to its thrusters and hovered above the scattered remains of a sunken ship.
Video of the wreckage was relayed to a vessel bobbing above, giving the crew — and the world — the first look at a ship whose location had stymied treasure hunters for generations. It was the SS Central America , a massive side-wheel steamship that sank in a hurricane off the coast of South Carolina in Illustration of the S. Central America before its sinking.
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Photo courtesy Library of Congress. The find was remarkable for many reasons. The artifacts eventually recovered from the ship were a window into a bygone era and gave voice to the hundreds of people who were pulled into the abyss. But the discovery was also a spectacular victory for pocketbooks — the ship was carrying gold when it sank, and lots of it: coins, bars and nuggets of every size surrounded the wreck and covered its decks and rotting masts. And that was only what the crew could see — somewhere in the remains were said to be between 3 and 21 tons of gold, a haul some experts valued at close to half a billion dollars.
For Thompson, the Edisonian genius who masterminded the expedition, the discovery was the first salvo of what looked to be a long, impressive career. He became an American hero, a mix of brains and daring in the tradition of the scientist-adventurers of yore. But Thompson was subjected to a legal hell storm as soon as he set foot on shore. Numerous people and companies were vying for their share of the gold, and the unending litigation was compounded by the lawsuits filed by investors who claimed Thompson had ripped them off. In , long after the litigation had sidetracked his calling, Thompson went underground, allegedly taking with him suitcases full of cash and gold.
Months later, Thompson was staying under an assumed name at a hotel in Boca Raton, Florida, trying to keep his faculties in check. He was unkempt, unwell and barely left his hotel room, as he had been on the run from federal authorities for the past two and a half years. From the witness stand in Columbus, Thompson disclosed startling information in a story already laden with tragedy and fortunes lost — and shed light on the mystery of millions in still-missing gold. The pressure 8, feet below the sea is times greater than on the surface, and Tommy Thompson was squeezed by something even more intense for the better part of 30 years.
He grew up in Defiance, Ohio, a small city in the northwestern corner of the state. He was always drawn to the water, and he enjoyed challenging friends to breath-holding contests. When he was a teenager, he bought and fixed up an amphibious car, and he loved pranking his friends by driving unsuspecting passengers into a lake. Rife with lore, the hunters spoke of ships sunken somewhere out in the ocean with more gold than could ever be spent. However, nobody knew quite where to start looking, nor could they afford the technology necessary to undertake the search. Following his graduation from The Ohio State University with a degree in ocean engineering, Thompson went to work for the Battelle Memorial Institute, a prominent research lab in Columbus that has developed everything from kitchen appliances to nuclear weapons.
There, he was able to work on deep-sea engineering projects, at one point developing technology that allowed the U. Thompson wanted to work exclusively in deep water but was routinely warned that such jobs were hard to come by. So he began looking for other ways to pursue this heady scientific passion. It was actually the means to an end. One of the first orders of business was to find the perfect wreck to hunt. Thompson worked with Bob Evans, an equivalently intelligent polymath and professional geologist, to winnow down the list of candidate ships. The Central America ferried passengers to and from California at the height of the Gold Rush in the mid 19th century.
Six hundred people, and up to 21 tons of gold coming from California, were aboard the Central America when it disembarked to New York from a stopover in Cuba on September 3, Five days later, the ship found herself floundering in the middle of a terrifying hurricane. Passengers attempted a hour nonstop bucket brigade to keep the ship afloat, but the engines flooded and the storm ripped apart masts and sails.
The ship was doomed. The vessel let out a final tortured groan as it sank on the evening of September 12, sucking souls down in a horrifying vortex. The loss in gold was so profound that it was one of the factors precipitating the Great Panic financial crisis of Finding the Central America would be no easy matter — proportionally it would be like finding a single grain of sand in the floor plan of a four-bedroom house. The key, Thompson knew, was to undertake a logical and hyper-organized search. Bob Evans used every known detail about the fateful voyage, including passenger and crew accounts of the weather as the ship sank, and worked with a search theory expert to determine that the wreck was likely somewhere in a 1,square-mile grid miles southeast of Charleston, South Carolina, in part of the ocean that was nearly a mile and a half deep.
Each square on the grid was assigned a number based on the likelihood that the ship had ended up there, and the idea was to trawl a sonar apparatus up and down the grid and take in-depth readings of the most promising results. Obsessed with his work, Thompson was said to be indifferent to food and sleep, dressed in a thrift store suit and hair afrizz. As a result, the high-powered investors waiting in their upper-floor offices and elegant conference rooms were often skeptical of his bewildering presence.
But time after time, Thompson would speak to them reasonably, thoroughly and intelligently. He was realistic about the low probability of success, outlined various contingencies, and emphasized that the mission offered the chance for the investors to participate in a journey of good old American discovery. Investors soon found themselves chuckling in delight at the audacious fun of the project and the inspiring confidence they felt in Thompson.
Wayne Ashby told the Columbus Dispatch in Thompson was the head of both. Under the aegis of these companies, Thompson outfitted a search vessel, put together a crew, and developed a seven-ton remotely operated vehicle capable of withstanding deep-ocean conditions. They also conducted various other experiments useful to the recovery, such as purposely giving Evans the bends. As Gary Kinder writes in Ship of Gold in the Deep Blue Sea, the deepest an unmanned submersible had gone previous to this was 6, feet.
That vehicle had been difficult to control, with only one arm that could perform rudimentary functions. The technology Thompson and his crew developed in secret streamlined and refined the submersible so that it was much easier to control and could perform the delicate tasks needed for the recovery of the ship.
It was one of their secret weapons, and the mission to find the Central America was officially launched in June The mission was subject to numerous difficulties: seasickness, short tempers, errant weather, malfunctioning equipment, little sleep, and a stretch of time when the only food served was fried chicken.
Investors groused about the delays, but Thompson always managed to assuage their fears. In late summer , the crew sent the submersible robot down to check out an overlooked blip on the search grid. The control room aboard the ship, with its walls of monitors and technology that made it look like an alien craft from an old movie, exploded with profoundly human joy. Gold and artifacts were brought to the surface starting in fall , the beginnings of a haul that would grow to include gold ingots, 7, gold coins, and, at 80 pounds, one of the largest single pieces of gold ever discovered and at the time the most valuable piece of currency in the world.
Wayne Ashby told the Dispatch when the discovery was announced. When asked by a reporter to estimate the value of the haul, Thompson demurred. The first haul of gold was taken from the ship straight into armored cars by guards carrying machine guns amidst cheering investors, well wishers, and descendants of the survivors of the Central America wreck.
But as it would turn out, that brief glimpse was the closest any investor would ever get to the treasure found at the bottom of the sea. I n , the Columbus-America Discovery Group had secured its right in admiralty court to excavate the Central America site and retain possession of whatever they discovered beneath the sea. But this ruling was challenged almost as soon as Thompson set foot back on the shore. Thompson and his companies were sued by no less than separate entities, including 39 insurance companies that had insured the cargo on the original Central America voyage.
Things got even more complex when an order of Capuchin monks sued Thompson, alleging he had copped the intel given to them by a professor from Columbia University whom they had commissioned to do a sonar search of the same area. The estimated location of the S. Central America. Illustration by Yunuen Bonaparte. Recovery operations were suspended in because of the lawsuits, leaving the fate of the gold brought to the surface in legal limbo — and tons of gold still on the wreck at the bottom of the sea.
The back-and-forth continued until and in the process established case law in admiralty court when Thompson and his companies were finally awarded Coupled with a significant devaluing of the rare coin market, a few investors wondered about the future of their investment. The pressure mounted as Thompson attempted to balance his obligations to his crew, his companies, and his investors while being a dad to his three kids. He was right there, every time there was a hearing. He read every page of every brief, and a lot of times he was helping with the writing, too. Army, but this later proved to be a myth.
Meetings with investors became less frequent, they said, as did updates and newsletters. Once lauded for his openness, Thompson appeared to go into a shell. Thompson said that his silence was necessary to protect trade secrets. By , some of the investors were fed up with the way Recovery Limited Partnership was being run and made moves to establish another company, this time with the investors in charge.
The companies were restructured, with the reworked Columbus Exploration as a partner company to Recovery Limited Partnership. Thompson was again the head of both entities, though it was stipulated that he would draw a salary only from the former and not the latter. Much of it was sold to gold and coin dealers, and some of the treasure was displayed in a lavish traveling exhibit across the country, with Thompson sometimes making an appearance alongside his discovery. Photos courtesy Donn Pearlman. Thompson then allegedly told investors that they would not be seeing any of the proceeds, as all the money went to pay off the loans and legal fees that had accrued since the mission began.
Thompson took the coins without approval from the board, though his attorney Keith Golden maintains there was nothing clandestine about it. Nonetheless, in , two former investors filed lawsuits against Thompson for breach of contract and fiduciary duty: Donald Fanta, president of an investment firm, the Fanta Group, and the Dispatch Printing Company, owned by the family that ran The Columbus Dispatch. Dispatch scion John W. However, he died and his cousin John F. Convinced that Thompson was ripping him off, the cousin pushed the lawsuit ahead.
Thompson was next sued by a group of nine sonar techs from the original mission who claimed they had been duped out of 2 percent of the profits from the gold, plus interest. The two cases were combined with a third into a mega-lawsuit in federal court, creating a labyrinthine legal situation with a rotating cast of attorneys and thousands of motions and maneuvers that bewildered even seasoned courtroom players.
Missions to the Central America were once again put on hold as Thompson put his mind to work filing legal briefs and appeals. Once having bragged of being the subject of more than 3, articles, Thompson had long since stopped talking to the press, and now spent half the year living in a Florida mansion rented under another name. Thompson began to show symptoms of the gilded affliction. In he was arrested in Jacksonville after a sheriff observed him hiding something under the seat following a routine traffic stop.
In July , U. Organ had never actually met Thompson and claimed that he was out to sea. But Judge Sargus shook his head and declared bullshit. The two were presumed to be together and, some of the investors speculated, in possession of millions of dollars in cash and the gold coins.
On top of the civil suits against him, Thompson was charged with criminal contempt of court, and U. Marshals were tasked with tracking down him down. Marshal Brad Fleming told the Associated Press in the midst of the pursuit. Once the most successful treasure hunter in the world, Tommy Thompson was now the one being hunted. I n late summer , a handyman named James Kennedy walked up to the porch of Gracewood, a large home in Vero Beach, Florida. Kennedy took out his cell phone and pretended to call the landlord. I picked up my cell phone and I said it real loud. He had been a handyman for decades, but even he was taken aback by what he found inside.
Thompson had been renting Gracewood since , a home away from the hassles in Columbus, and the mansion had become their home base when they fled Ohio two months earlier. As renters, Thompson and Antekeier had always been friendly but maintained their distance, Brinkerhoff said. He searched for Thompson on the internet and learned that the tenants were wanted by U. Kennedy himself had once found a mammoth bone and was similarly besieged with people trying to take advantage of his find.
The U. Marshals erected a wanted billboard as they worked to track down Tommy Thompson and Alison Antekeier. Photo courtesy U. Marshals Service. So he called the Marshals. But by that point, Thompson and Antekeier had long since fled Gracewood, and law enforcement was once again unable to determine where they went. Marshal Brad Fleming said in an interview.
Based on material found in the Pennwood cabin, the Marshals were alerted to the Hilton Boca Raton Suites, a banal upscale setting where the pair of fugitives had remained hidden since May 30, Marshals prepared to descend on the hotel. Thompson was a brilliant mind and incredible strategist, but he was not suited for life on the run. One of the last times anyone had seen him, it was a worrisome sight: Thompson was in the backyard of a house he was renting, yelling into his phone in his underwear.
Think more along the lines of Dilbert in charge of the operation. But what had to be one of the most intense disappointments in the saga, for Thompson, was the fact that the excavation of the Central America would carry on without him. Kane in turn contracted a company called Odyssey Marine Exploration to finish the recovery of the Central America. The goal was to bring the rest of the gold to the surface and ensure that the investors got paid. Thompson has significant holdings in the U. If there are dollars that he is hiding, I want every penny of it.
The renewed excavation launched in April , with U. Marshals putting a wanted poster of Thompson aboard the ship in case he attempted to rejoin the mission. The operation was quite successful, bringing up more than 45 gold bars, 15, coins, and hundreds of artifacts over the course of numerous dives, including a pair of glasses, a pistol, and a safe filled with packages. The sale of the gold was once again undertaken by the California Gold Marketing Group.
O n January 27, , Thompson, then 62, was pale and sickly as he sat in his room in the Hilton Suites in Boca Raton, his body racked with the paranoid tics of a man on the run. She took almost comically cinematic precautions when appearing in public, wearing big floppy hats and taking a succession of buses and taxis to lose anyone who might be on her tail. The hunt was led by an intimidating and extremely direct U. Marshal named Mike Stroh. He had been involved in manhunts all over the country, but the mission to find Thompson had special resonance with him as a professional person-finder.
After seven hours of following her, Marshals crashed their way into the hotel and surprised the two, screaming at them not to move. The Marshals would ultimately cart away 75 boxes of evidence from the room, but they came up empty-handed in one aspect of their quest. Investigators found boxes in the Gracewood mansion that looked a lot like those that had held the restrike coins, but the gold itself was nowhere to be found.
Thompson tried to fight the extradition. Marshal Brad Fleming said Thompson was chatty as they made the journey back, perhaps relieved that he no longer had to hide. Both pleaded guilty to criminal contempt. T he capture of Tommy Thompson made for a fairly pedestrian end to a story that had captivated Columbus for years.
Other associates were wistful about the turn of events. But the notion that not even a brilliant mind could resist running off with gold was too salacious not to report, and the allegations of thievery became the dominant narrative. It was an unfortunate bookend to the legacy of someone who had long maintained that the historical and scientific aspects of the recovery were the most important point of the mission. Gold ingots, pokes, dust and nuggets, all part of the exhibition showing the recovered treasure from the S. Central America Photos courtesy Donn Pearlman. Indeed, the non-gold accomplishments of the Central America mission are impressive and resounding.
Michael Vecchione, a zoologist with the Smithsonian who briefly worked with the expedition, said the jerry-rigged technology of the Nemo is now standard practice for deep-ocean explorations. The mission took thousands of hours of video, giving scientists an unprecedented look at deep-sea life and revealing new species and their evolutionary adaptations, he said. Deep-sea sponges were retrieved and studied for their antitumor properties. And the way in which they physically nabbed the gold was incredible in its own right: The robotic arms of the submersible gingerly placed a frame around a pile of coins and injected it with silicone, which, when solidified, made for a block full of gold that could be stored until it was ready to be brought to the surface.
Controlling all of this were systems less powerful than those contained in the average smart phone, Bob Evans said. The coins and other gold items recovered from the Odyssey Marine—led excavation debuted in a public exhibit in Los Angeles in February to record-setting attendance, and they were next seen in May at an NRA convention in Dallas.
After administrative costs, court costs and creditor claims, there would theoretically be a distribution to the investors in Recovery Limited Partnership — the first time they would ever see a dime, 33 years after the initial investment for some. The prison, an imposing but generic detention facility surrounded by razor wire, is about three hours from Columbus, and it is the place Thompson has called home for more than four years.
It appears to be his home for the foreseeable future, as Thompson is serving an indefinite sentence in federal prison for civil contempt for refusing to divulge the whereabouts of the coins. It has been hard to deduce his motivations, even for those who know him well.
His intense concentration and extreme focus found the Central America , and the same focus applied to trying to find an answer to his current predicament is taken as unwillingness to play ball. Only two of the hundreds of investors in the mission have sued Thompson because they knew it was a gamble to begin with, she said. Moreover, as Bob Evans explained, the actual value of the gold was highly speculative in the first place.
The inventory has been published. There is no other gold that has been recovered. Perhaps the math is not simple, but it is not beyond the talents of the most elementary minds, or at least the reasonably educated. But according to Quintin Lindsmith, attorney for the Dispatch Printing Company, recouping the supposedly missing returns is not the point. Thirty years and two months after the treasure was found, Thompson was driven the long three hours from Milan, Michigan, to Columbus, Ohio, to stand trial and answer questions many people had been waiting a long time to ask.
The missing defendant suggested a repeat of previous events. Had he somehow fled? Thompson, in a navy sport coat and light-colored plaid shirt, was momentarily nonplussed, and his eyes, behind his black, thick-framed glasses, registered a small amount of surprise. Most damning, however, was alleged evidence that he had stashed gold at the bottom of the sea, presumably to be retrieved later on: When the receivership went back down to the Central America in , they found coins and gold bars that had been neatly laid out on trays. Thompson also admitted that he had made off with the gold coins as a form of remuneration he felt he was due.
In her testimony, Alison Antekeier said that between and she moved them from California to a safe-deposit box in in Jacksonville, and then to a storage facility in Fort Lauderdale, where she gave them, in a handful of suitcases, to a man who was supposed to transfer them to an irrevocable trust in Belize.
This was the point Thompson was trying to make all along. As his attorney Keith Golden explained, an irrevocable trust means that once the trust is set up, the person who opened it cannot access it without the permission of the named beneficiaries. Who was supposedly named as beneficiaries on the trust is unclear. The ruling was later overturned on appeal.
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Finally, after weeks of testimony, the attorneys made their closing arguments and the jury reached its verdict. Thompson sat in his wheelchair, legs shackled, as the official paperwork was handed from the foreman to the bailiff to the judge. After the decades of science, discovery, stress and flight, it all came down to this. In the matter of the civil case against, it was determined that defendant Thomas G. Thompson sat expressionless while everyone else gasped. However, the jury declined to award any punitive damages or court fees, indicating that there was no evidence that Thompson acted with malice.
Either way, Lindsmith said the victory is once again about the principle. Like the cost of the litigation itself, the financial cost is immaterial to the larger point. The receivership is fielding offers for a multitude of items from the Central America and the recovery missions. Available for sale are bits and pieces of scientific and historical ephemera , including silicone molds with gold coin impressions, and even the Nemo , the remote underwater vehicle that was the first human contact with the Central America since They have tickets from the passengers.
Gold bars and coins at the shipwreck site in Golden adds that the relentless litigation torpedoed an opportunity that would have made the Central America recovery look like chump change. Thompson was working with the Colombian government in the mids to recover an old galleon whose estimated value is legitimately a few billion dollars. The next steps for Thompson in the case brought by Dispatch Printing include an appeal of the judgment, with the hopes that the award will be diminished or overturned.
Separately, Thompson has filed an appeal in federal court to be let out of prison. Thompson is currently awaiting the ruling of a three-judge panel about whether or not his is valid. What little time he has to use the phone is spent speaking with lawyers, business partners, and his family; ditto for the days he can have visitors. And after decades of developing new technology, going after hidden gold, and having to fight in court, Thompson is used to secrecy and has no reason to talk about the case to anyone. Alison Antekeier still lives in Columbus, keeps a low profile, and is still reportedly very sympathetic to Thompson.
Numerous attempts to contact her went unanswered. In Ship of Gold in the Deep Blue Sea , Gary Kinder includes chilling survivor accounts of the Central America disaster, including men and women screaming maniacally as they dumped out purses and emptied hidden pockets of gold as the ship sank. The vacated wealth was something they otherwise would have killed to protect. It was mania wrought by the plague of gold, a crippling infirmity that afflicts humans alone. These Syrian children survived attacks that left them burned beyond belief. One program thousands of miles from home is offering them life-changing treatment.
W inter was on its way in northwestern Syria when Hana Al Saloom awoke around 6 a. There was a chill in the air. Her 5-year-old daughter, Aysha, was asleep near a gas heater, as her brothers and sisters slept in other rooms. Hana blinked. The blast knocked her down. Then screams. She swiveled on her knees. She looked around. Everything was on fire. It was as if her house had exploded. The impact must have caused the gas heater to blow up too. The flames spread fast. Hana raced outside with her older children. He had reached into the flames to pull her out.
His legs and hands were seared. But Aysha was injured the worst. Neighbors rushed to put out the fire on her body — and all around them. Her skin was smoldering. A neighbor rushed Aysha and her dad to a hospital. Her wavy hair dances around her bright eyes. There she is in a white blouse. There she is in a purple plaid dress. There she is with pigtails, sitting on a swing, wearing a white, blue and red polka-dotted tutu. Aysha Al Saloom, 8, at the apartment in Irvine, California, where she lives with her mother.
Aysha will spend several years here while she undergoes surgeries for her burn wounds. Her mouth hung open, her eyes slightly cracked, her neck as reddish-pink as a bloody raw steak. Her face looked as if someone had slathered it with a mud mask. Pasty in some places, blackened in others. But her skin, Hana says, was still there, even if it had turned a different shade. Badly hurt and on the brink of death, that is how Hana remembered her daughter on the day she was burned. After Aysha was whisked away to Turkey for medical care on the day of the accident, an uncle who accompanied her sent a photo of her face wrapped in white bandages.
Instead, the uncle would call regularly with updates from Turkey. She was going to be OK. Doctors focused on her lungs especially, which were damaged from the smoke. Hana prayed and cried, waiting for Aysha to be well enough to come home. Finally, that day came. Hana waited, and when she saw the car coming down the road, she ran out of her house in time to see her little girl step out. She remembers that Aysha wore jeans and a red and white striped dress. Her hair had been shaved off. But it was her face that shocked Hana the most.
She did not know that the burned layer of skin had fallen away in sheaths, and that the new skin that replaced it was a combination of grafts, recent growth and irregular-shaped scars. Aysha did not look like the little girl her mother remembered, but Hana had no doubt she was her daughter. She grabbed Aysha and carried her inside of the house. She sat down, weeping. Hana recalls how Aysha was welcomed back to parts of the community, but the children who used to play with her refused. In May , they boarded a plane and arrived in California. For the last 10 months, Aysha has lived in Southern California, traveling with a chaperone several days a week — an hour each way from an apartment in Irvine — to the hospital in Pasadena for checkups and surgeries, all to treat the burns and scars that run across her arms, chest, neck and face.
She is one of six Syrian children who have come to the U. Given the immigration hurdles and expenses for travel, living and medical care, it would be almost impossible for most Syrian families to travel to the U. She has been active in humanitarian projects since the war in Syria began. State Department has remained supportive of temporary visas to bring burned Syrian children and their families to the U. The boys are all being treated for their burns at the nearby Shriners Hospitals for Children.
All four children and their families live together in one apartment in Galveston. Twenty-five more burned Syrian children are currently on waiting lists to come to the U. Currently they do not have enough funding to bring all of the children who need help. There have been half a million deaths and at least two million injuries since the start of the Syrian Civil War in , and the young Syrian patients who show up at Shriners come with gnarled hands, missing eyes and knotty scars, as well as obstructed breathing, hearing and vision.
Some can barely swallow. Their injuries are the direct result of air strikes and, in some cases, chemical weapons attacks. A longtime Syrian-American activist within the Arab-American community, Moujtahed worked on developing the partnership with Shriners as well as getting support from politicians. Those who survive their burns have a really tough, heavy pain, not only from their burns, but also psychologically. Norbury recalls the injuries of one Syrian boy he treated recently. It looked like he was balancing a baseball on the back of his hand. But she still has more surgeries to go.
When Aysha is not in the hospital, she plays alone, or studies with a year-old Syrian girl, Hamama, who is also receiving treatment at Shriners and lives with Aysha and her mom in the Irvine apartment. Hamama lost her parents, along with key parts of her memory, when her village was attacked. She cannot recall her past, the accident, or even her family members who died.
Hamama Almansoor, 17, in the Irvine, California, apartment where she lives while being treated at Shriners Hospital for Children. They occasionally go to the shopping mall, or out to eat. Aysha collects dolls, watches Disney cartoons, and loves Skittles. But mostly she longs to attend school in a building outside with other children, even if they stare or laugh at her. It is too risky. Doctors have prohibited her from attending school outside because they worry the sun and environment could harm her already fragile skin and nervous system. Hana homeschools Aysha, who tries to stay in good spirits, even though she wishes she had other kids her age to play with.
When she does go outside for brief periods, she worries about what people think of her. Once, Aysha spotted a woman pushing a stroller. She noticed a toy fall from the stroller to the ground. Aysha thought of picking up the toy to give to the baby. Aysha shows a photo of herself from before she was injured in a missile attack. On the television, a shark tries to catch a dolphin. Hana wears a gray head scarf and a red trench coat, which she has buttoned. She gives Aysha rosewater. She is often so focused on her daughter, she forgets about herself.
Hana left five other children behind in Syria. Though Hana and Aysha video chat with their family members back in Turkey and Syria regularly, they know that they will likely not see them again for at least another two years. That is how long the doctors expect it to take to complete the needed surgeries. Abdullah and Anwar on the merry-go-round at the local theme park in Galveston. A doctor examines Abdullah, while his mother looks on, at the Shriners Hospitals for Children.