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     Archaeologia Cantiana -  Vol. 5  1863  page 319

By JOHN BRENT, JUN., F.S.A.  continued

of the dregs of the old faith; and some practices of Paganism may have long continued, as amongst the Bretons1 and inhabitants of Armorica, the Druidic circle, the cromlech and the cairn, had so strong a mystery for the fears or reverence of the population, that, in spite of the prohibitions of their Church and its ministers, they were ever found lingering by the "weird grey stones" with reverence and awe. The use of these spheres for magical purposes. both in ancient and modern times, in Europe as in the East, is a fact too well established to challenge debate. We have even in our own day seen the crystal consulted with implicit belief by well-educated people. The rude Anglo-Saxon valued it for some purpose unknown, and it was buried with him in the grave. Was it not with him some symbolical remnant of mystery or ancient superstition? It is nothing very extraordinary if it were; but surely it would be something to be marvelled at if a thing, then prized only as an ornament, became in an after age, and in a

 highly-educated one, considered to possess wonderful and magical properties.
   One of our best living authorities2 enters somewhat into this view of the case when he describes these crystals as worn or used as amulets. Another3 classes them merely as ornaments to the person.
   Beads, Silver Ring (Plate II., fig. 4), Echinus.—More than 140 beads were found in the grave. Of these, 133 are of red amber, but have lost all their external lustre from long contact with the soil. There are two of clay, large and ornamented with different- coloured striae, and some few of porcelain. The number much exceeds the quantity usually found, and the large proportion of amber beads probably attests the wealth of
1. See ‘ Barzaz Breiz,’ by Villemarque, Introduction.
2. Mr. Wright, ‘ Pagan Saxondom,’ p. 10.
3. Note by Mr. C.R. Smith to ‘ Inventorium Sepulchrale,’ p. 43.

Page 319  (This page prepared for the Website by Christine Pantrey)             

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