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GREAT SNOW STORM, MARCH 3, 1886: SCENE IN GREY STREET, NEWCASTLE.

old Fox Tarred and Feathered," and "News from the Pope to the Devil." On one occasion he gave the authorities a fright, and seems to have got frightened himself into the bargain. Thus runs the story. He announced his intention of preaching a sermon from the text, "He that hath not a sword, let him sell his garment and buy one." Those responsible for the peace of the town, knowing their man, grew rather afraid when they heard of this ominous text. They sent some of the town's sergeants to form a portion of the congregation. All passed off quietly, as it happened; but then it occurred to Murray that he had better find out how he really stood in regard to the powers that were. Forthwith he went up to London, and called on Lord Mansfield, the then Chief-Justice. He obtained for his application the conventional reply: "Not at home." "Tell him," was the sturdy rejoinder, "that a Scotch parson, of the name of Murray, from Newcastle, wants to see him." He was admitted. What passed at the interview? We can only guess from the judge's last words, quoting a simile in the Book of Job: "You just get away by the skin o' your teeth."

In 1780-the year of the Gordon riots in London, so vividly depicted in Dickens's "Barnaby Rudge," the year when there was danger of a general attack on the Roman Catholics-Murray was to the fore again. In that year there was a contested election in Newcastle. Murray proposed a sort of test, or pledge, to each of the candidates-aimed, of course, at the religionists, with whom he had waged a life-long war. Sir Matthew White Ridley would have nothing to do with it. Even Andrew Robinson Bowes, who was never in the habit of sticking at trifles, vowed that "he would be blessed”— only that was not quite the exact word!" if he gave anything of the sort." The third candidate, Sir Thomas Delaval, gave the required pledge; but he was unsuc cessful at the poll.

We might add more concerning this curious cleric, but content ourselves with relating two anecdotes which reveal him on his better side. The first is, that, being on the highway leading to Newcastle on a rainy day, he overtook a labouring man who had no coat. He himself had two. He took one off, and put it on the wayfarer's back, with the remark: "It's a pity I should have two coats and you none; it's not fair." The second refers to an incident which occurred in his chapel here. A Scotch drover turned into the place one Sunday rather late, and was content to stand. Nobody offered him a seat. Murray waxed wroth. "Seat that man," thundered he; "if he'd had a powdered head, and a fine coat on his back, you'd have had twenty pews open!"

The remainder of Grey Street, though made up of noble buildings, calls for little notice. In 1838, one of them was occupied by a Mrs. Bell, who kept it as a board. ing house. One of her boarders was Mr. James Wilkie,

who at the time held the office of house-surgeon and secretary to the Newcastle Dispensary. In a fit of temporary insanity this poor man threw himself out of an upstairs window, and injured himself so dreadfully that he died shortly afterwards. This victim of an o'erwrought brain had been connected with the institution for fifteen years. That he was held in general respect in Newcastle may be gathered from the fact that about a thousand persons followed his coffin to its grave in Westgate Hill Cemetery, where a monument was erected to his memory.

Amongst other establishments on the east side of Grey Street is that of the Messrs. Finney and Walker, whose premises were for many years the publishing office of the Newcastle Chronicle. Opposite is a noble pile, now the Branch Bank of England.

Nobody can take a thoughtful glance at the thoroughfare we have been traversing without admitting that it is a masterpiece of street architecture: a monument to the genius of the two men principally concerned in designing and erecting it-John Dobson and Richard Grainger.

Early Wars of Northumbria.

I.

THE ROMAN INVASION.

HEN travelling through the picturesque stretch of country that lies between Tynedale and the Tweed, and noting its many indications of marvellous prosperity, it is difficult to realize that its verdant hills and smiling valleys were ever less peaceful than they now are. And yet, if the whole island was searched from Cornwall to Caithness, there could be found few districts that have undergone greater changes, or played a more conspicuous part in the national history. In pre-Roman times, much of the surface of Northumberland was covered with bogs and marshes, and much more with dense and almost impenetrable forests. Its inhabitants were the Ottadini -a fierce and warlike tribe of the Brigantes-who have left their hill forts, their weapons, and their tumuli, as the sole evidences of their constructive skill. When Cæsar's hordes invaded Britain, fifty years before the Christian era, they were never able to penetrate these Northern wilds. Their accounts of the people with whom they did come in contact, however, furnish material from which a very fair estimate of the local settlers can be formed. The men, they tell us, were tall, strong, and active; the women fair, well-featured, and finely-shaped. Both sexes gloried in a profusion of red or chesnutcoloured hair, and their favourite method of adornment was by a process of painting, or tatooing, not unlike that practised by many savage races in our own day. Their robes, too, when robed at all, consisted entirely of skins ; their oft-moved huts were little better than nests of

boughs and reeds; and their time, when not engaged in fighting, was usually devoted to the exciting pleasures of the chase. Cattle were extensively reared as a means of subsistence; but, except along the coast lines, there was no effort made to till the land or to encourage the growth of corn or other grain.

ARMS AND DEFENCES OF THE BRITONS.

Such, in brief, is the picture which old chroniclers give of the appearance and habits of the Britons. It is abundantly sufficient for our purpose, as we desire to deal only with the warlike attributes of this primitive people, and to point out the methods by which they sought to check the advance of our earliest invaders. When the well-disciplined legions of Rome first secured a footing, they found the southern portion of the country very thickly populated. The natives were as courageous as they were fierce, and defended their woodland settlements by deep trenches and highly piled barricades of fallen timber. They were swift of foot, as well as expert swimmers, and these qualities-together with their skill in crossing fens and marshes-enabled them to pounce suddenly upon their adversaries, and as suddenly to disappear with the spoil. Their ordinary arms consisted of a small dagger and spear; but, in war times, these

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came in their way. They could be driven at immense speed, even over the roughest country, and were usually of most use at the commencement of a battle. dashing madly about the flanks of an opposing force, their occupants would throw their terrible darts with great adroitness, and the very dread of this onslaught not unfrequently broke the ranks of Cæsar's finest troops. When they had succeeded in making an impression on the advancing foe, and saw their way for a joint attack, the Britons leapt from their chariots, formed into a solid and compact body, and fought on foot with all their accustomed intrepidity. The drivers, meanwhile, withdrew the chariots from the strife, and took up positions which would best favour the retreat of their masters if the tide of battle should roll against them. "In this manner," says Cæsar, "they performed the part

were augmented by a light shield, by long and heavilybladed swords of bronze, and by javelins which they could throw with great accuracy and effect. These latter missiles were not lost by the act of propulsion, as they were attached to the wrist by leather thongs, and could be drawn back to the thrower as soon as their mark had been reached. At the lower end of this curious dart was a round, hollow ball, stocked with pieces of metal, and the noise caused by the flight of this alarming rattle-added to the exciting cries and antics of the gaily-stained warriors-has rendered many a well-meant attack of the Roman foe inoperative.

THE CHARIOT AND ITS USES.

But by far the most famous of British implements of war was the chariot. It was drawn by a couple of small, wiry, and perfectly trained horses, and afforded space for two or three fighting men, as well as for a driver. The body of the vehicle was a combination of strength and lightness, and at the extremity of its stout axles were fixed scythes or hooks for slashing and tearing whatever

both of rapid cavalry and of steady infantry." "By constant exercise and use," he adds, "they have acquired such expertness that they can stop their horses in the most steep and difficult places-when at full speed-turn them whichever way they please, run along the carriage pole, rest on the harness, and throw themselves back into their chariots with incredible dexterity." It is worthy of note that the great leader makes no reference to the cruel accessories which are said to have adorned the axles of these vehicles. This omission has caused many writers to doubt whether such instruments of torture were ever in existence. It is impossible, of course, to speak positively on such a matter; but it is well to remember that similar appliances have been used in other lands, and that our own museums contain relics-from more than one British battle field-which antiquaries think could hardly have been used for any other purpose than that described.

MILITARY KNOWLEDGE OF THE NATIVES.

In tactics and strategical skill, the natives displayed considerable talent. When in readiness for the fray, the infantry-in wedge-shape formation-occupied the centre; the cavalry and the chariots constituted the right and left wings; and at the rear were strong bodies of reserves. They were quite alive to the importance of harassing an enemy before delivering the chief attack, and were fully impressed with the necessity of a well-executed movement on the hostile flanks. They were formidable adversaries in every way, and if their weapons had been of a better quality-not made of bronze that bent beneath a heavy stroke-it is quite possible that the first Roman in

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vasion might not have been repeated. As it was, indeed, Cæsar never made any great headway, and could only maintain himself with difficulty in localities that adjoined the coast. In the language of Tacitus, he was & discoverer rather than a conqueror," and even his discoveries, in these islands at least, were not far reaching.

THE RETURN OF THE ROMANS.

But if Cæsar made little impression on the Britons, he carried away reports which were well calculated to arouse the ambition of his successors. Nearly a century elapsed before the Romans again undertook the work of subjugation; but they were then better prepared, came in greater numbers, and set about their task with such care and deliberation that a speedy conquest seemed assured. It is not necessary to follow the fluctuating fortunes of their numerous campaigns in the South. From the landing of Aulus Plautius in A.D. 43, down to the advent of Julius Agricola in 78, bloodshed seldom, if ever, ceased. There were terrific struggles with the Silures under Caractacus, and with the Iceni under Boadecia. There were furious onslaughts upon the Druids of Anglesea and the Brigantes across the Humber. Fire and sword went hand in hand, and the track of war was followed by famine and disease. Victory was not always with the assailants; but whether they lost or won at the commencement, they always ended by bringing the natives under their yoke.

AGRICOLA ON THE TYNE.

further advance, and he began his march northward with every confidence in the ultimate triumph of his army. While traversing the open country, he was practically unassailable, but at the river fords, and amid the mountain passes, his progress was disputed with all the obstinacy that a clever and courageous foe could devise. Many an entrenched hill top in Coquetdale and Glendale had to be stormed before the invaders could proceed, and as the conflict in every case was at close quarters-with the Britons in possession of the best ground-the assailants lost enormous numbers of their men ere even the Cheviots were reached. In the end,

It is with the coming of Agricola that we get our first records concerning the district that constitutes the present county of Northumberland. There is an absence of detail about many of the recitals; but they will serve, perhaps, to throw a little light on the condition of the North Country and its occupants at a very remote period. The famous chieftain we have named was as skilful in the arts of peace as in those of war. He had served under Seutonius Paulinus against the "Warrior Queen," and was greatly beloved by his army. Under his able guidance the fortunes of Rome underwent a marvellous change. Deserted posts were recovered, refractory tribes were punished, and an attempt was made to bring the conquered people into greater harmony with their masters. While this work was proceeding in the southern province, Agricola marched north of the Humber, gained victory after victory, and ultimately found himself face to face with the brawny races near the higher reaches of the Tyne. There is no absolute record of early battles in this district, but it is fair to suppose that the Ottadini-like the Brigantes of Yorkshire and Lancashire, and the Gadeni of Cumberland and Westmoreland-would be dispersed to their mountain retreats, and that Agricola would then, according to his invariable custom, protect the acquired territory by throwing up strongly entrenched works for the accommodation of his soldiers.

THE UNSUCCESSFUL FIGHT WITH GALGACus. By the spring of 81-having ensured the safety of his communications-the Roman leader was ready for a

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the defenders were always compelled to give way; and, being then driven before Agricola's dashing legions, they were put out of harm's way behind the line of forts he erected between the Firth of Forth and the River Clyde. Having, by the summer of 83, completed this undertaking, the Roman leader renewed his journey towards the Highlands, and everything seemed to indicate that his pevious successes would be continued. He was no sooner out of sight, however, than the Caledonians descended from their hill strongholds, swarmed over his defences, and, in a night surprise, managed to annihilate one of his divisions. Returning with all speed, Agricola attacked his daring assailants, and succeeded in beating them. But the damage they inflicted upon his troops and earthworks, precluded all attempts at further advance, and he was compelled to winter in a very inhospitable region. The campaign recommenced with the fine weather of 84; but as 30,000 natives, under the heroic Galgacus, had posted themselves on a well chosen spur of the Grampians, it was necessary at once to dislodge them. After a fierce and destructive battle, the Romans carried the position, and inflicted terrible losses on their retreating foe. But, though defeated, the Northeners contrived to check the foreign advance. When morning dawned, the invaders saw only a silent and deserted land. Their late adversaries had disappeared as if by magic, and left nothing behind them but smoke and flame and ruin. With a crippled army and straitened supplies, it would have been extremely hazardous to penetrate into the hill country, and Agricola found himself compelled to relinquish his enterprise. He returned by easy stages to the

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