The Mock Mayor of Newcastle-under-Lyme

A summary of a paper on the topic, Journal of the British Archaeological Association, 1851.

The word “solemn” in the final line of the report is presumably an inversion, meant as a cynical witticism of the type common at that time.

The paper itself is…

Joseph Mayer, “Account of the Ancient Custom of Electing a Mock-Mayor in Newcastle-under-Lyne”, Transactions of the Historic Society of Lancashire, 1st May 1851. It is rather more lively that the above dry report of it suggests, and has vivid details of the characters and costumes involved.

It can be found in full in Transactions of the Historic Society of Lancashire for 1851, with illustrations intact and un-stolen but with a gutter down the centre. With the aid of the above smaller picture I’ve here tried to do a basic repair of the engraving in Photoshop…

The original painting this was engraved from can be seen at the Brampton Museum, Newcastle-under-Lyme…

The short paper also has drawings of local ‘market hats’ of the period (1830s)…

Tolkien and borders

Some interesting sounding papers in a Tolkien session planned for the Leeds International Medieval Congress 2020…

Borders in Tolkien’s Medievalism III.

* Boundaries and Marches: Marked and Unmarked Edges in Tolkien’s Maps, by Erik Mueller-Harder, Independent Scholar.

* The Walls of the World and The Voyage of the Evening Star: The Complex Borders of Medieval Geocentric Cosmology, by Kristine Larsen, Central Connecticut State University.

* Time-Travel, Astronomy and Magic Mirrors: The Borders between ‘Reality’ and ‘Otherworlds’ within Middle-earth, by Aurelie Bremont, Sorbonne Universite Paris.