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ticulars relative to the provisions and house-keeping expenses of the family. The Cliffords were, it seems, by no means adepts in proportioning their expenditure to their income; the former almost constantly exceeding, and that to a considerable amount, the produce of the latter; a disparity which compelled them to have a regular title in these books for the receipt of money from lands sold. Yet this excess was certainly not owing to the dearness of the necessaries of life, for butcher's meat and fuel were cheap ; venison was furnished in profusion from their own parks, and of fish they had an ample supply either from their own sources, for the earls of Cumberland had, at this time, as chief lords of the Percy fee, a share in the fishery of Malham Water, or in presents from the neighbouring gentry. Such, however, was the hospitality of the kords of Skipton, and such their great expenses in dress, in journeys to their various castles, and in visits to London, that we cannot be much surprised at the result. How chargeable was travelling at this period will be evident from the two following

items, of which the first is also a curious proof of the then great imperfection of roads, for the countess of Cumberland, we find, was eleven days in going from London to Londesborough “1640. Disbursed in my lady's journey from London to Londesbro', being eleven days with 3 horses, lxviiil. xviiis. ix.d. “1642, May 9. Delivered to his lordship for his journey from London to the court at York 50l.” Of the gigantic scale on which cookery was carried on at Skipton, a pretty adequate idea may be formed from the statement, that though coals and much peat were consumed at the castle, yet, in addition to these, 1600 loads of ling per annum, pulled upon the neighbouring moors, were used for heating the ovens. “These,” we are further told, “were not like the diminutive ovens of the present day; but vaults of stone, capable of holding a flock of sheep, before they baked them ; and they were seldom unemployed.” It is added, that, “when a part of the Clifford family resided at Grafton in Northamptonshire, not only pasties of red deer venison were sent thither by express from Skipton; but carcasses of stags, two, four, or more, at once, were baked whole, and despatched to the same place".” We subsequently learn, that three bushels of wheat and twelve pounds of pepper were used for baking two stags, and that the making of venison pasties, which were structures of such an enormous size as to look like castles in pastry, required so much time and skill, that “the office of pasty-baker was distinct from that of the cook or baker of the family.” The articles of wine, sugar, and tobacco, must have been attended with a prodigious expense; for though wine was cheap, yet such was the vast consumption of claret, sack, and muscadine, that Whitaker concludes the upper servants must have shared with their masters in the first at least +. Of the union of white wine and sugar, we meet with several items which would seem to indicate that the visitors at Skipton castle had as great a partiality for this composition as the celebrated sir John Falstaff himself; and when we discover that this production of the western world was then so dear that a fat wether would not have pur

chased two pounds of it, we may readily conceive

* Hist. of Craven, p. 310, note. + Ibid. p. 309.

that the general use of such a delicacy would materially swell the annual account. Nor was tobacco, which seems to have been lavishly used at Skipton, less costly, for the finest sort was then 18s. per pound, and a single bill for this article was found among the family papers, amounting to 36l. 7s. 8d. a sum equal in value to about 150l. of our present currency! . - Another source of considerable expense must have arisen from the circumstance, that nearly all their garden vegetables, even those which we now esteem of the most common kind, were imported at a very extravagant price from Holland; thus by an item in 1595, we are informed that two shillings were “paid for vi cabishes, and some caret rootts bought at Hull,” and by another in the same year, that a messenger was sent to the above seaport for two ropes of onions. It is somewhat singular that whilst among the evidences of the Cliffords no account is given of any of the festivals occurring in their own immediate family, there should yet be found treasured up in these same evidences a minute detail of

the marriage feasts of some of their distant relatives or intimate friends, such as the Cliftons, and the Neviles of Chevet *. As these, however, of which Dr. Whitaker has preserved several full-length portraits, were undoubtedly similar to what had often been set forth in the castles of Skipton and Brougham, I shall select a part of one of them, with the corresponding commentary of the historian, as affording some very curious illustrations of the hospitality and domestic arrangements of the day. This fête, at which the Cliffords were present, was given on the marriage of Elizabeth, daughter of sir John Nevile, with Roger Rockley, Esq. on the 14th of January, 1526, being the 17th year of Henry the Eighth ; and the memorial of it opens with an enumeration of the dress of the bride and bridegroom, which, it is remarkable, was nearly if not altogether black, the former being clad in black satin, and the latter in a gown of black

- * “Sir John Nevile, of Chevet, high sheriff of Yorkshire, 19 Hen. VIII. married Elizabeth, daughter of — 3 3. widow of sir Thos. Tempest; and had issue Elizabeth, married to Roger Rockley, Esq. and Mary, married to sir Ger. vase Clifton.” Wide Thoresby's Ducatus Leodiencis, p. 183.

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