MARCH 12th, 1881.
THE WESTERN ANTIQUARY.
It is proposed under this heading to set apart a column of the Weekly Mercury as a medium of communication between antiquaries and seekers after information concerning the history and traditions of the two Western Counties, Devon and Cornwall.
The object of this column is to encourage the search for obscure facts ; to awaken in the minds of readers and students an interest in local lore; and to collect in one depository such matters as may be of service to the future historian or ardent antiquarian. Amongst the various topics that will thus be treated of, maybe enumerated the following:Notes, Queries, and Replies; Stray Scraps and Quotations, Legends, Traditions, Folk-lore, Village Customs, Local Dialect, Proverbs, Quaint and Early Literature, Personal Recollections, Old Letters and Diaries, Anecdotes, Biographies Archaeological, Heraldic, and Genealogical items; Parish Books and Registers, Corporate Records, Agricultural, Architectural, and Horticultural Notes of a curious or interesting character, besides many other matters of more than passing interest.
Several well-known antiquaries and others engaged in literary pursuits have already promised their valuable assistance, by the contribution of short articles, and by supplying information under the various headings. The assistance of others interested in the local traditions of the West of England is invited, in order that the contents of the column may be of interest to our readers and the public generally, as well as valuable as a permanent record. It is hoped sufficient encouragement will be given to this scheme to warrant the re-publication of the Western Antiquary in some more enduring form than that in which it first appears.
Contributors are requested to note the following methods by which they can assist:
1.By sending brief notes on out-of-the-way, but interesting, topics.
2.By asking for information upon any point on which they require enlightenment; local, of course.
3.By replying to the communication of others when possessing the needed information.
4.By submitting to the Editor, cuttings from papers containing local information, from old periodicals, curious works, or other sources.
5.By calling attention to obsolete customs, strange occurences, singular coincidences and striking peculiarities.
6.By giving information concerning peculiar words or phrases, proverbial sayings, and peculiarities of dialect.
There are many matters which escape the attention of the historian, antiquarian, or journalist, which it would be valuable to have placed upon record, and to this end the Western Antiquary will be established, as a sort of literary exchange open to all.
The column will be under the personal superintendence of a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, and he has received promises of assistance from several members of other learned bodies. It will be the endeavour of the Editor to make this department available to all, useful to all, and welcome to all; and he trusts that the spirit of the old Cornish motto" One and All"may actuate those who love West Country lore, and who are anxious to preserve the memory of old traditions.
All communications should be accompanied with the name and address of the writer, although not necessarily for publication.
Contributions are invited, and may be addressed to
W. H. K. WRIGHT,
THE EDITOR OF THE " WESTERN ANTIQUARY,"
Weekly Mercury Office, Plymouth.