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We take premises, and never see from whom ; we quit them, and never wish to see—we draw a cheque for the rent, and do not even catel a glimpse of the landlord's hand in a receipt, for the presentation at the bank makes that unnecessary. Thousands pay to agents and receivers ; tens of thousands are waited on duly with book and receipt. To the poor, even quarter-day is abolished, or rather it is always quarter-day with them, for they pay weekly. There are courts and alleys innumerable, called by the significant name of Rents-Ferrit's Rents; Spongem's Rents; Mawworm's Rents; Fingerit’s Rents : the term is emphatic; it shows the only ideas of the possessors. To them they are not human habitations, they present to their minds no images of human and domestic life; they awake no sympathies nor speculations on what passes
In huts where poor men lie.
They are merely so many man-traps to catch the paying. animal in ;-they are machines for manufacturing Rent !
ANTIQUARIAN NOTICES. This month has retained its Latin name without the change of a single letter. By the Romans it was so called as being the seventh month from March, and with them too it remained equally unaltered except for a short time in the reign of Domitian, when the tyrant, after two triumphs, having assumed the title of Germanicus, thought proper to give his new appellation to September, while he honoured October with his former name. This however did not last long. He was shortly after murdered, when the unlucky title was erased from every brass and stone, and September restored top its birth-right; the caution of succeeding princes preventing them from any interference to retain a name so ominous.
By the Anglo-Saxons this month was called Gerst monath, Haligemonath. The first of these appellations it had, as Verstegan tells us, "for that barley, which that moneth
commonly yeelded, was anciently called Gerst, the name of barley being given unto it by reason of the drink therewith made, called beer; and from beerlegh it came to be berlegh, and from berlegh to barley. So in like manner beerheym, to wit, the overdecking or covering of beer,- came to be called berham, and afterwards barm, having since gotten I wot not how many names besides."
The name of Haligemonath, i.e. holy month, was given to it, according to a Saxon menology in Wanley's addition to Hicks, " for that our forefathers, the while they heathens were, in this month celebrated their devil-gild.” These devil-gilds (deofol-gild) were the sacrificial gilds of heathenism, and to them, according to Wilda and Lappenberg, may be traced the origin of the municipal system of the Saxons, for they seem to have combined the double character of a feast and of a court-day for settling disputes and trying offences, the priests exercising the criminal jurisdiction and lending it the consecration of religion. Hence the Christians condemned them under the name of devil-gilds, and would fain bave forbidden the people from feasting in honour of the demons, as they chose to term it; but amongst the German race it was a difficult matter to put them down altogether.
Holy Rood Day, September 14th.-A custom peculiar to this day seems to have been the going into the wood a nutting. Thus in the old lay of Grim, the Collier of Croydon:
This day they say is called Holy-Rood Day,
St. Michael and all the Holy Angels-Michaelmas Day; September 29th.-St. Michael has obtained the honour of this day from its being the anniversary of the dedication of a church to him on Mount Garganus, or Mount St. Angelo, a mountain in Apulia.
The custom of eating geese upon this day has been a sad puzzle to antiquarians, and to the present time no reasonable cause has been assigned for it. Some have suggested that it may have arisen from the fact of geese just now being in
high season; but this seems to be rather a cutting of the knot than an untying of it. That, like most of our other customs and festivals, it has been derived from Paganism, I have no doubt whatever, though the connecting link in the chain is now lost to us. The goose, as we all know, was amongst the Egyptians_sacred to Isis and Osiris, and amongst the Romans to Juno and Priapus, and when we consider that in so many instances we find the prototypes of the saints in the gods and goddesses of heathendom, there seem to be strong grounds for suspecting that Saint Michael is here only occupying the place, and receiving the honours of some pagan deity.