The Gypsy's Parson: His Experiences and Adventures
Library of Alexandria, 1915 - 307 pages
A TANGLE of sequestered streets lying around a triple-towered cathedral; red roofs and gables massed under the ramparts of an ancient castle; a grey Roman arch lit up every spring-time by the wallflower’s mimic gold; an old-world Bailgate over whose tavern yards drifted the sleepy music of the minster chimes; a crooked by-lane leading down to a wide common loved by the winds of heaven—these were the surroundings of my childhood’s home in that hilltop portion of Lincoln which has never quite thrown off its medieval drowsiness.
Not far from my father’s doorstep, as you looked towards the common, lay a narrow court lined with poor tenements, and terminating in a bare yard bounded by a squat wall. Every detail of this alley stands out in my memory with the sharpness of a photograph; the cramped perspective of the place as you entered it from our lane, the dreary-looking houses with their mud-floored living-rooms fronting upon the roadway, the paintless doors and windows, the blackened chimneys showing rakish against the sky, all combined to make a picture of dun-coloured misery. There were, it is true, a few redeeming features gilding the prevailing drabness of the scene. The entrance to the court had a southerly outlook upon green fields stretching up to the verge of the Castle Dyking, or, to revive its more gruesome name, “Hangman’s Ditch,” so called from the grim associations of a bygone day. From these fields a clean air blew through the court, rendering it a less unwholesome haunt for the strange folk who dwelt within its precincts; while not half a mile distant lay the breezy common, a glorious playground for the children of Upper Lincoln.
What people are saying - Write a review