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the atmospheric tinting; yet of all Wales com- brought to bear upon the witches, and, as Cadmend me to Carmarthen Bay. Here every | wallader assured me, they were
(anchored hour gives new life and beauty, and with all with blue yarn," so that they could not do any these changing shades there is a repose and mischief “ out at sea." influence of repose over all ; that, harmonising Wrecks are of rare occurrence here now, with the purer and better feelings of the heart, though in days gone by Pendine, like most of brings with it a tranquillising effect I never its neighbours on the Bristol Channel, bore an experienced elsewhere.
unholy reputation, the inhabitants living by The sunrises and sunsets are absolutely wrecking and smuggling; and upon the Beacon splendid, and make one long to be a painter, rock stands a post where formerly a fire was though, after all, if happy enough to catch even lighted, while a horse with a lantern tied round a faint impression of the gorgeous colouring, his neck was taught to walk along the verge of how loud-mouthed the public is in crying it the cliff
, and many a good ship’s crew left their down as unnatural. I once stood beside a great bones to whiten beneath the waters of Carpainter while an amateur critic was condemning marthen Bay. the bright colouring of a sunset picture ; the As a people, the Welsh are much given to painter listened calmly, and when the other superstition, and many are yet pointed out said had done gravely made reply, “Sir, I am not to be endowed with the power of prophecy, or the Creator, only a humble copyist.
"second sight.” One instance, which occurred The neighbourhood is rich in legendary lore, not many years ago in the neighbourhood, is and the fame of the Pendine witches was long | firmly believed in. A farmer and his friend a source of trouble and anxiety among the had been enjoying a day's fishing in the Tav, coasting vessels, the hags taking a delight, as an excellent trouting stream that runs past the well as gaining a living, by exercising their ! old Abbey of Whitland. As the evening drew spells upon such ships as came within their on, the sport grew slack, and at last the trout influence.
gave up taking at all, so the sportsmen put up I was told by old Cadwallader, a boatman their tackle, said “Good night,” and departed at Tenby, that he remembered when a lad on their several roads homeward. The farmer, accompanying his father to the help of a be- however, liked a pipe, and was stopping with witched vessel, the captain of which, being a the intention of lighting his, when he became stranger to these parts, knew nothing of the conscious of an indescribable sensation ; the danger of hugging the land, and when he air seemed full of sound, and yet was perfectly suddenly perceived that the ship was driving silent. As he stood perplexed, not to say on shore the evil was done. In vain he shifted alarmed, strange noises began to issue from the sail and tried to tack; the witches' wind tacked 'ground, the hill trembled beneath his feet, his too, and strange voices and laughter came pipe dropped from his hand, and he was on the whistling through the shrouds as the sailors point of running away, when a long whistling attempted to alter them. At last one of the shriek, accompanied by the sound of a thousand crew cried out that they were bewitched, then wheels, burst from the hill-side close beside the others all fell upon their knees, and not a him ; a number of horses feeding close by turn of work could the captain persuade them pricked up their ears and galloped wildly down to do, so that the good ship drove right on the hill, jumping right into the bed of the Tav, shore.
When they were in this predicament, where they stood panting and frightened until with the wind rising and a storm brewing, the the strange sound died away in the distance. boat from Tenby put off to their assistance. The farmer did not stay to pick up his pipe,
“When,” to use the words of my informant, but hurried home brimful of the wonderful we see'd a big ship go on the sands we knowed event, and under considerable apprehension what they were up to, my father being a very that some terrible calamity was going to happen clever man, and understanding all about the to him or his family. witches.
Well! when we gets to the land he Some time afterwards the line for the South didn't go to’ards the ship, but sets off to the Wales Railway was surveyed and a tunnel at | auld witch's cottage, and rammed a daruing last completed, the mouth of which opened at
needle threaded wi’ blue worsted into her arm the very spot from whence what was now extill the blood spurted, and when that come she plained as a spectral train had issued, and upon gives a lood screech, and instantly there was as the opening day the farmer and a crowd of fair a wind as ever blowed, and the ship turned country folk were upon the spot to witness the off quite jolly-like, so we got her into Tenby effect, which certainly exactly answered the harbour, and that's as true as death, for I was description given by him, even to the horses an eye-witness."
galloping into the Tav. After this event, some counter-charm was A couple of old men now living at Pendine
positively affirm that they saw a spirit train round Pendine the fairies still hold their crossing the plaiu ; but as the bill to enable a court. A green pasture, near the upper company to open a line from Tenby to Nar-' village, was pointed out to me as their favourberth has just passed, I fancy there is little ite rendezvous ; and a few years back, it is chance of this prophecy being fulfilled, at least I said, that as two farm servants were coming for many a year.
home one midsummer night, one inadvertently Visionary funerals, or, as they are called, stepped inside the mystic ring : she was imme
corpse candles," are said to precede death ; | diately caught by invisible hands, vanishing the lights assemble round the house, take their from the sight of her wondering and frightened way to the church-yard, and sometimes go companion, who night after night came back, through the ceremony of an interment; they watching and hoping to catch a sight of the are also seen hovering over a place where i girl. This at last he did, upon the anniversary a fatal accident will shortly occur. There of the night wherein he lost her. There she seems no law as to the appearance, where, how, was, whirling round in the fairy ring. Coming or to whom, of the “corpse candles;” the only as near as he dared, he caught her by the thing I remarked was, that the power of seeing hand, but instead of being glad to rest, she such things is generally claimed by the old begged him to let her finish the dance, when families among the middle class, and that the faithful swain replied with more energy you always hear it was
or “my than politeness : mother” to whom such or such a thing ap- i “Sure, indeed, then ye’ar danced a dommed peared.
deal too much ; - its twelve months since I Fairies prevail everywhere, and the country lost ye !” folks' belief in these parts is, that the fairies are In the same pasture another lad witnessed a the souls of those who, when death came, were fairy feast. Having been sent a message, and veither good enough for heaven or wicked tarrying too long, the boy was afraid to go enough for hell, and so passed into a fairy home, and so lay down under the hedge to state, and were thus set to punish lying, sleep. Presently music began to thrill on the stealing, and immorality of any kind.
summer air ; thousands of silver bells seemed I am not learned in fairy history, and so can- tinkling close to him ; and, while he was listennot make a surmise as to the origin of this be- ing, a pale clear light shone over the field, lief, which must have been imported, as the old which to his astonishment he perceived to be Cymric faith of the metempsychosis taught by ' full of tiny little creatures, all clad in bright those poetical law-givers, the Druids, has a very and glittering garments. Some were sitting in different tendency, and far other fate, for the the blue bells, and some in the buttercups ; various degrees of sin and evil. Talking of some had wings, some long silver or gold this transition, I met lately with a curious wands; and as they moved about they all sang anecdote of the old Spencer family. The : in a soft, sweet, low strain. Suddenly a band of Spencers were not popular, being a tyrannical, them appeared, leading along a favourite red exacting race, taking what they pleased, and ox belonging to the lad's master ; then, to his when they pleased ; it mattered not whether great horror, he watched them proceed to kill
, the game were cattle, corn, or a pretty woman, roast, and eat the ox. The savoury smell if fair means failed, force was used, and their thereupon getting the better of fear, the lad followers never returned empty-handed from crept up near enough to purloin a bone, and their raids, so that Gaerffily bore a bad name, lay watching until he fell asleep. When he and it became a common saying, that if any- awoke next morning the first thing he saw was thing was missing it had gone to Gaerftily. The the red ox, quietly grazing close beside him. poet David ap Gwilyn has immortalised this in The next was the bone, which was neither a couplet in one of his effusions ; it is in the
more nor less than a portion of a human leg. Cymric tongue, and runs thus :
Completely perplexed, he rose to go home, but A gên y gwr gan ei gi
could hardly limp along, and was never able to Ai gorff él i Gaerffili,
walk straight again. which, rendered into English, means :
About half a mile from Pendine, upon
the May the soul of this fellow (the last of the Spencers) promontory beyond Morvybachen, is a rocky animate his dog, and may his body go to Gaerffily, platform, known as the Maiden's Bower, from that is, to the devil,—the two terms being the circumstance that one Sunday, during synonymous.
divine service, three diminutive people, clad in The belief in fair though wearing out, is scarlet cloaks, entered the church. Before still prevalent in many places, especially quiet seating themselves they took off their cloaks, remote districts, such as those I am writing of, and hung them upon å sunbeam that glinted and thus it is that in the lonely green dells across the church. As soon as service was
over, the little maidens caught up their cloaks, thick, proving that, though probably something and made their way so quickly out of church less than a castle, it had been something more and down the Black Valley, that in spite of than a mere manor. the long legs and stimulating curiosity of the About half a mile farther on is the “Green Welsh “boys,” they did not overtake the Bridge of Wales,” famous in prophecy as the maidens, only catching a glimpse of them as spot where the last battle in Wales is to be they disappeared at the end of the rocks, fought ;-is to be, as no battle has yet taken which has since borne their name.
place here. Merlin asserts, however, that The farm-house in High Pendine, com- such shall be, and that “ a farmer with three monly called the Great House, is a fair speci- thumbs shall hold the three kings' horses." men of the better class of Welsh farms, and In reference to this, I imagine, is the prohas seen many a generation change around it. phecy attached to a flat stone near, " that the Here Cromwell made a visitation on his way white crow should here drink blood before the to Ireland, compelled the men to serve in his end of the world.” army, and ransacked the larder of the good The Green Bridge itself is curious and picdame ; and a descendant of the family, Miss turesque, being a deep arched chasm, into Rees, of Pendine, has in her possession a which a small rivulet pours, and, passing undercouple of glass drops, once the ornaments of a ground for nearly two miles, comes to light candelabrum, which were picked up from the again close to Morvybachen.
The cavern spot where Cromwell's carriage stood, proving formed by the passage of the water is very that the “ Protector” had an eye to private curious, and passable for considerable business as well as public. These drops are distance. Hung with mighty stalactites, and heirlooms, of which the worthy old lady is not as far as the light penetrates, wreathed with a little proud. Speaking of my friend, Miss the pretty maidenhair fern. In an exploring Rees, I may mention, as a proof of the health- expedition we made there lately, my brother fulness of the place, that the united ages of picked up what had all the appearance of a her grandfather and mother and great-grand- petrified bone; and if our supposition is correct, father and mother, in all makes the sum of and the prize is the bone of a mammoth, much three hundred and forty years, being respec- that is interesting may yet be dug up from the tively—as notified by the memorial stone in subterranean bed of the river. the church—three times eighty-four, and the The road to Tenby along the margin of the last, eighty-eight.
bay is one of the loveliest I have ever driven Passing through the village, you arrive at over, and deserves more time and space than I the church, a plain and much neglected build- can here give, so I must continue my walk ing of ancient date, looking sadly both time down the Dark Valley to Morvybachen, where and tempest worn, and more, forgotten : the immediately above the Bard's cottage are three churchyard being rank and ove rown,
altars. One is very perfect, the seven upright standing disgrace to those whose friends rest supports and flat covering stone being entire. there; though, perhaps, even sadder to see No examination has taken place, but an exthan the docks and nettles, were the straggling ploring party is being planned. Upon the opuntrimmed Howers, plauted when grief was posite side of the valley I distinctly traced the fresh and deep,—now, straggling, the all un- circle, with three large stones lying eastward, tended tokens of the versatility of human love. which exactly answer to the description given
Generally speaking, the Welsh are partial to of the “Station Stones,” so placed at the holdepitaphs, and exercise both ingenuity and wit ing of the annual Gorsedd. in their composition, but here there are few This circle lies just to the left of some quaint enough to interest the reader.
curiously-marked stones, called the Devil's Leaving the church and the village, and Foot Marks, and these holes or prints when taking the Tenby road, you pass a curious old full of water are supposed to possess various ruin, having all the appearance of strength in healing powers. times long past ; but all I could gather of its The higher eminence beyond them is known history amounted to the fact, that it had been as the Beacon Rock, but more commonly among the habitation of a once well-known character, the inhabitants as 66 Break Lentsneck” Hill, one Zacherias Thomas, who left, among other it having been the custom for the country things, a charitable bequest to the church of people to assemble here upon the last day of Eglys Cymmin, in the adjoining parish. Lent, and, hurling large stones down into the
The ruin, as it stands now, possesses an old sea, figuratively break “ Lent's neck ;" henco arched door-way, in which I could trace the its ordinary name. portcullis. On either side appear to have been The view from this height is truly grand rounded towers, loop-holed and immensely and imposing, extending as it does over tho
full extent of the beautiful Bay of Carmarthen mark to say that one-fourth of the working and Gower's Land; then as far as the Black population of England is dependent upon Mountains on the north-east, and the Percilly agriculture. Mountains on the north-west ; while east- Coming more directly to statistics, we find ward you see, Tenby, Gilter Head, and Caldy that upwards of 30,000,000 of acres are in cul. Island ; and directly before you, on a clear tivation in Great Britain, of which 19,000,000 day, lies Lundy Island, with the Devonshire are devoted to the growth of corn and roots, and coast in the back-ground, and sometimes even 11,000,000 or 12,000,000 are in permanent the hazy outline of a portion of Cornwall. pasture. Now, taking the very low average
Immediately below is the glen, known as of 4!. per acre (and, in shame be it spoken, this the Black Valley, the only visible habitation is less than half the sum that might be profitbeing the cottage of Thomas Morris, at whose ably employed), the actual aggregate sum emfireside the lover of homely fare, a good story, ployed on the land by our farmers is not less or a good song will always find a welcome, than 120,000,0001. This amount of land and and will bring away with him a picture that capital is divided amongst, in round numbers, will prove a pleasant memory for many a long 225,000 farmers, holding farms varying in size day.
I. D. FENTON. from thirty acres to 1000 and upwards. In this
calculation the smaller holdings are omitted, as OUR FARMS AND OUR FARMERS.
furnishing no employ for agricultural labour,
and being classed under the head of spade COULD a perfect stranger to our institutions husbandry. Taking two horses for every fifty and our country—one conversant, however, acres of land in arable cultivation, we get emwith foreign lands, and learned in all that re- ployment for 760,000 horses, not including lates to the development of human progress in young horses, fouls, &c. ; and to manage and other quarters of the globe—could such a one till the land our farmers employ an average of be put on shoro at Liverpool, or any other of 756,000 labourers, actually engaged in outour great commercial ports; visit our unrivalled door work. In-doors we have a further staff docks, our vast warehouses, and see the im- of 63,000 agricultural servants, and 25,000 mense hive of human beings engaged in fur- female domestics. As a further assistance to thering the purposes of commerce, he would our farmers in busy times and certain seasons certainly indorse the opinion of the Great of the year, we have upwards of 236,000 woNapoleon, and pronounce us a “nation of
men and children, occasionally or partly emshopkeepers.”
ployed, besides boys and girls resident partially But land him, say, on the coast of Norfolk, on the farm, and numbering 100,000 and upand, avoiding the larger and busier coast towns, wards, To pay this large staff, our farmers' trausport him at once into one of our most “ little labour bill” is computed at something flourishing rural districts ; show him the care- like 27,000,0001. annually. fully cultivated fields, the level and closely Descending from generalities to individuals, trimmed hedgerows, and the magnificent crops we will take our model farmer, put him upon of corn waving like a golden sea over the land- a farm, stock it for him, and calculate his scape; and he would as certainly assert England profits. to be nothing more or less than a commi
munity The proper size of a farın will of course vary of farmers. And in this opinion he would not with the amount of his capital and the nature be far wrong, in spite of the doctrines of the and value of the land ; probably, however, Manchester School. Agriculture is a much from 200 to 400 acres is the most convenient, more important matter, and its development | and, upon the whole, the most profitable size and progress are more closely associated with the for the investment of capital. To stock and well-being of this country than could at first work his farm to a profit, our farmer should sight be believed. It is true we can import possess at least a capital of from 81. to 10l. per corn, and that at a price which will absolutely It is true he may go into his farm with yield a cheaper loaf than our own agriculturists less; and if seasons, crops, and prices are pro
; can supply at a fair j rofit; but in the matter pitious (a consummation oftener looked for of beef, mutton, and the finer description of than arrived at), he will not feel the deficiency. long wools, we are dependent mainly upon But should markets fall or seasons blight his Great Britain and her farmers.
crops ; if he has to buy in his stock dear and The proportion of our population who, di- sell it out cheap-not so unfrequent an event rectly or indirectly, derive their living from the as a novice might suppose ; he involves himself land is a very large one, and includes amongst in a labyrinth of difficulties a lifetime will not the number one of our most influential classes, extricate him from. Taking, then, this sum as the landholders. It is probably under the necessary to start our farmer, we will try to
show how the money is consumed.
his daily tasks, so as to procure the greatest the valuation from the outgoing to the incom- amount of labour and return for his capital. ing tenant. This comprises the taking-to of Perhaps in no occupation is such unceasing straw and hay, for on most farms the tenant | industry and watchfulness required as in farmis prohibited from selling his hay ; the valua- ing. The manufacturer, employing machinery tion 'of fallows and growing crops, and in some for the production of his article, works with districts what are called unexhausted improve- materials susceptible of but little variation, and ments, being the manure, &c., that the previous day by day the same task is begun and comtenant has enriched the land with, but from pleted. But with the farmer this is ditforent : which he has as yet reaped no benefit. Im- his task is ever changing ; and a variation in provements in farm buildings are sometimes weather, a fall of rain or snow, will completely classed under this head.
disarrange his contemplated plans, and make Then comes his farm implements, his ploughs, an operation he was successfully pursuing toharrows, drills, carts, waggons, &c., which day injurious tomorrow. Hence the necessity should all be of the very best and most modern on his part for constant and careful supervision construction. Next comes the stock, the and watchfulness, that he may take advautayo amount and value of which depend upon the of every opportunity, and not neglect to make nature and capabilities of the land. If it is a hay while the sun shines.” grazing farm, and the quality of the land be Our farmer must of necessity be an early rich and good, a large amount of capital is re- riser. He must be at his post at or before quired to stock it. Many farmers in the Mid- six o'clock in the morning, the hour that his
land Counties have stock to the value of 201. labourers usually assemble for work. He must 1 per acre. It must be remembered, however, then set them about such tasks as time, sea
that the present prices of live stock are excep- sons, and weather render necessary to be done. tionably high.
Stock will next require his attention, and here Having laid out part of his capital in his the eye of the master is essentially requisite. implements and stock, our farmer must still He must see that their food is proper in quality possess a balance in hand to meet his weekly and sufficient in quantity, and that every anipayments, such as labour, tradesmen's bills, mal is receiving its fair share. He will also rates and taxes, and the hundred-and-one notice any appearance of illness or unthriftiitems which require him always to have his ness in his animals ; and if he finds one of hand in his pocket. For, supposing him to enter them ailing, he will, if possible, ascertain the his farm in April, he will have some months cause, and apply, or cause to be applied, the to come before his corn is fit to cut and send | appropriate remedy. to the market. Then there is his rent to be Field operations next require his supervision; provided for, usually paid half-yearly, although and in this department is essentially requisite among most landlords it is postponed for some a thorough knowledge of his business, for our three or four months after it is actually due. farmer should be able to detect at a glance all
The amount of stock a farm will carry so oversights and shirking of work on the part of much depends upon the quality of the land, his labourers. He will thus be able to disthat no general rule can be laid down. Upon criminate between the man thoroughly up to sheep farms, that is, upon land adapted for his work and who has his master's interest at the keep of sheep, it considered that one heart, and the mere idler, whose whole study sheep per acre can be kept, and sometimes, i it is to get through his work with the least with the addition of artificial food, even more.
trouble. A farmer will generally find a sprinkGrazing land of a rich quality will feed a bul- ling of the latter class among his labourers, lock to the acre, and that on grass alone ; but however careful he may be in his selection of to keep a dairy cow summer and winter will them. Dinner generally occupies an hour, require the produce of three acres. In the after which field operations are resumed, the regulation of his stock, our farmer is required horses coming home at various times from threo to exercise both judgment and discrimination : to six o'clock ; upon most farms the horse he must buy in the cheapest market and sell labour ceases at three. Six o'clock generally in the dearest ; he must be alike careful not to sees the termination of the farm day, and overstock his farm, so that he will have to at that hour the labourers cease from work. purchase large quantities of artificial food, or Those, however, who have special duties to to understock it, so that his own produce re- attend to, such as the horse-keepers or wagmains unconsumed.
goners, and the cowmen, stop until their reHaving thus started our farmer, stocked his spective duties are finished, however late the farm, and fairly placed him in working order, hour may be. Before retiring to rest, the we will now see how his time is occupied in farmer should again be at his post, see that all