List Of Contents | Contents of Miscellanies upon Various Subjects
< < Previous Page     Next Page > >

one of the commissioners of the excise office in London. He did
protest that Kenilworth castle was the very castle he saw in his

*Captain Wingate was a prisoner in Oxford, after
Edgehill fight, 1642.

Sir Roger L'Estrange was wont to divertise himself with cocking in his
father's (Sir Hammond L'Estrange's) park; he dreamt that there came to
him in such a place of the park, a servant, who brought him news, that
his father was taken very ill. The next day going to his usual
recreation, he was resolved for his dream sake to avoid that way; but
his game led him to it, and in that very place the servant came and
brought him the ill news according to his dream.

Mr. Edmund Halley, R. S. S. was carried on with a strong impulse to
take a voyage to St. Hellens, to make observations of the southern
constellations, being then about twenty-four years old. Before he
undertook his voyage, he dreamt that he was at sea, sailing towards
that place, and saw the prospect of it from the ship in his dream,
which he declared to the Royal Society, to be the perfect
representation of that island, even as he had it really when he
approached to it.

A Gentlewoman dreamt that a pultess of blew corants would cure her
sore throat; and it did so. She was a pious woman, and affirmed it to
be true.

Anno 1690. One, in Ireland, dreamed of a brother or near relation of
his, (who lived at Amesbury in Wiltshire) that he saw him riding on
the downs, and that two thieves robbed him and murdered him. The dream
awaked him, he fell asleep again and had the like dream. He wrote to
his relation an account of it, and described the thieves complexion,
stature and cloaths; and advised him to take care of himself. Not long
after he had received this monitory letter, he rode towards Salisbury,
and was robbed and murdered; and the murderers were discovered by this
very letter, and were executed. They hang in chains on the road to

'Twas revealed to a King of Scots, that if he drank of the water of
Muswell, he would be cured. After great enquiry they heard of such a
place, not far from Hornsey in Middlesex. See Weever's Funeral
Monuments of the Well. John Norden's Description of Middlesex. Here
was afterwards founded a religious house for Austin Monks: since it
belonged to Sir Thomas Row, and in 1677, was pulled down and the
materials sold. Anciently the Kings of Scotland were feudatory to the
Kings of England, and did their homage every Christmas day. They had
several lodges belonging to them for their reception in their
journey; as at Huntingdon, &c. See Caxton's Chronicle concerning

The water of this spring is drank for some distempers still.

      "Somnium ex Eubernea porta."

Mrs. Cl---, of S---, in the county of S---, had a beloved daughter,
who had been a long time ill, and received no benefit from her
physicians. She dreamed that a friend of hers deceased, told her, that
if she gave her daughter a drench of yew pounded, that she would
recover; she gave her the drench, and it killed her. Whereupon she
grew almost distracted: her chamber maid to complement her, and
mitigate her grief, said surely that could not kill her, she would
adventure to take the same herself; she did so, and died also. This
was about the year 1670, or 1671. I knew the family.

A Gentlewoman, of my acquaintance, dreamed, that if she slept again,
the house would be in danger to be robbed. She kept awake, and anon
thieves came to break open the house, but were prevented.

J.  H. Esq.* being at West-Lavington with the Earl of Abbingdon,
dreamed, December the 9th, his mother rose up in mourning: and anon
the Queen appeared in mourning. He told his dream the next morning to
my Lord, and his Lordship imparted it to me (then there) Tuesday,
December 11. In the evening came a messenger, post from London, to
acquaint Mr. H. that his mother was dangerously ill: he went to London
the next day; his mother lived but about eight days longer. On
Saturday, December 15, the Queen was taken ill, which turned to the
small pox, of which she died, December 28, about two o'clock in the

J. H. Against these initials there is a note in the copy of the
first edition already referred to, in these words,-" James Herbert: He
saies he was never there."

Sir Thomas White, Alderman of London, was a very rich man, charitable
and public spirited. He dreamt that he had founded a college at a
place where three elms grow out of one root. He went to Oxford,
probably with that intention, and discovering some such tree near
Gloucester Hall, he began to repair it, with a design to endow it. But
walking afterwards by the Convent where the Bcrnardines formerly
lived, he plainly saw an elm with three large bodies rising out of the
same root: he forthwith purchased the ground, and endowed his college
there, as it is at this day, except the additions which Arch-bishop
Laud made, near the outside of which building in the garden belonging
to the president, the tree is still to be seen. He made this discovery
about the year 1557.

There are millions of such dreams too little taken notice of, but they
have the truest dreams whose IXth house is well dignified, which mine
is not: but must have some monitory dreams. The Germans are great
observers of them. It is said in the life of Vavasor Powell, that he
was a great observer of dreams, (p. 17 and 114, of his life) that he
had many warnings from them, that God had spoken to himself and others
by them; for warning, instruction, or reproof. And it is also there
averred, that Angels had appeared to him.  See p. 8, of his life.

In Mr. Walton's life of Sir Hen. Wotton, there is a remarkable story
of the discovery of stolen plate in Oxford, by a dream which his
father had at Bocton-Malherbe, in Kent. See in Ath. & Fasti. Oxon.
vol. 1, p. 351,

William Penn, proprietor of Pensylvania, told me, that he went with
his mother on a visit to Admiral Dean's wife, who lived then in Petty-
France; the Admiral was then at sea. She told them, that, the night
before, she had a perfect dream of her husband, whom she saw walking
on the deck, and giving directions, and that a cannon bullet struck
his arm into his side. This dream did much discompose her, and within
forty-eight hours she received news of the fight at sea, and that her
husband was killed in the very manner aforesaid.

Sir Berkley Lucy sold the fabric of the chapel of Netley Abbey, to one
Taylor, a carpenter of Southampton, who took off the roof, and pulled
down great part of the walls. During the time that this Taylor was in
treaty for the chapel, he was much disturbed in his sleep with
frightful dreams, and as some say, apparitions; and one, night he
dreamt that a large stone, out of one of the windows of the chapel,
fell upon him and killed him. The undertaker, though staggered with
these intimations, finished his agreement, and soon after fell to work
on pulling down the chapel; but he was not far advanced in it, when,
endeavouring with a pickax to get out some stones at the bottom of the
west wall, in which there was a large window, the whole body of the
window fell down suddenly upon him, and crushed him to pieces.
Willis's Mitred Abbeys, vol. 2, p. 205, 6.

Jan. 1774. One Daniel Healy, of Donaghmore, in Ireland, having three
different times dreamed that money lay concealed under a large stone
in a field near where he lived, procured some workmen to assist him in
removing it, and when they had dug as far as the foundation, it fell
suddenly and killed Healy on the spot.

March 25, 1779. This morning A. B. dreamt that he saw his friend 0. D.
throw himself from a bridge into a river, and that he could not be
found. The same evening, reading Dr. Geddes's account of Ignatius
Loyola, p. 105, 5th tract, v. 3, he met with the following particular
of him; as he was going into Bononia, he tumbled off a bridge into a
moat full of mud; this circumstance was quite new. Every tittle of the
above is strictly true, as the writer will answer it to God.-- To what
can be attributed so singular an impression upon the imagination when sleeping ?

      **Comical History of three Dreamers.

Three companions, of whom two were Tradesmen and Townsmen, and the
third a Villager, on the score of devotion, went on pilgrimage to a
noted sanctuary; and as they went on their way, their provision began
to fail them, insomuch that they had nothing to eat,, but a little
flour, barely sufficient to make of it a very small loaf of bread. The
tricking townsmen seeing this, said between them-selves, we have but
little bread, and this companion of ours is a great eater -- on which
account it is necessary we should think how we may eat this little
bread without him. When they had made it and set it to bake, the
tradesmen seeing in what manner to cheat the countryman, said: let us
all sleep, and let him that shall have the most marvellous dream
betwixt all three of us, eat the bread. This bargain being agreed
upon, and settled between them, they laid down to sleep. The
countryman, discovering the trick of his companions, drew out the
bread half baked, eat it by himself, and turned again to sleep. In a
while, one of the tradesmen, as frightened by a marvellous dream,
began to get up, and was asked by his companion, why he was so
frightened ? he answered, I am frightened and dreadfully surprized by
a marvellous dream: it seemed to me that two Angels, opening the gates
of Heaven, carried me before the throne of God with great joy: his
companion said: this is a marvellous dream, but I have seen another
more marvellous, for I saw two Angels, who carried me over the earth
to Hell. The countryman hearing this, made as if he slept; but the
townsmen, desirous to finish their trick, awoke him; and the
countryman, artfully as one surprised, answered: Who are these that
call me ? They told him, we are thy companions. He asked them: How
did you return ? They answered: We never went hence; why d'ye talk of
our return ? The countryman replied: It appeared to me that two
Angels, opening the gates of Heaven, carried one of you before our
Lord God, and dragged the other over the earth to Hell, and I thought
you never would return hither, as I have never heard that any had
returned from Paradise, nor from Hell, and so I arose and eat the
bread by myself.- From an old edition of Lasarillo de Tormes.


CYNTHIA, Propertius's mistress, did appear to him after her death,
with the beryl-ring on her finger. See Propertius, eleg. 7. lib.

      "Sunt aliquid manes, letum non omnia finit,
      Luridaque evictos effugit umbra rogos.
      Cynthia namque meo visa est incumbere fulcro,
      Murmur ad extremae nuper humata viae:
      Quum mihi ab exequiis somnus penderet amaris.
      Et quererer lecti frigida regna mei.
      Eosdem habuit secum, quibus est elata, capillos,
      Eosdem oculos. Lateri vestis adusta fuit.
      Et solitum digito beryllon adederat ignis,
      Summaque Lethoeus triverat ora liquor:
      Spirantisque animos, & vocem misit, at illi
      Pollicibus fragiles increpuere manus."

      Thus translated by Mr. DART.

      Manes exist, when we in death expire,
      And the pale shades escape the funeral fire;
      For Cynthia's form beside my curtain's stood,
      Lately interr'd near Aniens' murm'ring flood.
      Thoughts of her funeral would, not let me close
      These eyes, nor seek the realms of still repose;
      Around her shoulders wav'd her flowing hair,
      As living Cynthia's tresses soft and fair:
      Beauteous her eyes as those once fir'd my breast,
      Her snowy bosom bare, and sing'd her breast.
      Her beryl-ring retain'd the fiery rays,
      Spread the pale flame, and shot the funeral blaze;
      As late stretch'd out the bloodless spectre stood,
      And her dead lips were wet with Lethe's flood.
      She breath'd her soul, sent forth her voice aloud,
      And chaf'd her hands as in some angry mood.

St. Augustin affirms that he did once see a satyr or daemon.

The antiquities of Oxford tell us, that St. Edmund, Arch-Bishop of
Canterbury, did sometimes converse with an angel or nymph, at a spring
without St. Clement's parish near Oxford; as Numa Pompilius did with
the nymph Egeria. This well was stopped up since Oxford was a

Charles the Simple, King of France, as he was hunting in a forest, and
lost his company, was frighted to simplicity by an apparition.

Philip Melancthon writes that the apparition of a venerable person
came to him in his study, and bade him to warn his friend Grynseus to
depart from him as soon as he could, or else the inquisitors would
seize on him; which monitory dream saved Grynaeus's life.

Mr. Fynes Moryson, in his travels, saith, that when he was at Prague,
the apparition of his father came to him; and at that very time his
father died.

In the life of JOHN DONNE, Dean of St. Paul's, London, writ by
Isaak Walton.

At this time of Mr. Donne's, and his wife's living in Sir Robert
Drury's house in Drury-Lane, the Lord Haye was by King James sent upon
a glorious embassy, to the then French King Henry the IV. and Sir
Robert put on a sudden resolution to accompany him to the French
Court, and to be present at his audience there. And Sir Robert put on
as sudden a resolution, to subject Mr. Donne to be his companion in
that journey; and this desire was suddenly made known to his wife, who
was then with child, and otherwise under so dangerous a habit of body,
as to her health, that she protested an unwillingness to allow him any
absence from her; saying her divining soul boded her some ill in his
absence, and therefore desired him not to leave her. This made Mr.
Donne lay aside all thoughts of his journey, and really to resolve
against it. But Sir Robert became restless in his persuasions for it,
and Mr. Donne was so generous as to think he had sold his liberty,
when he had received so many charitable kindnesses from him, and told
his wife so; who, therefore, with an unwilling willingness, did give a
faint consent to the journey, which was proposed to be but for two
months: within a few days after this resolve, the Ambassador, Sir
Robert, and Mr. Donne, left London, and were the twelfth day got safe
to Paris. Two days after their arrival there, Mr. Donne was left alone
in the room, where Sir Robert and he, with some others, had dined: to
this place Sir Robert returned within half an hour, and as he left, so
he found Mr. Donne alone, but in such an extacy, and so altered as to
his looks, as amazed Sir Robert to behold him, insomuch as he
earnestly desired Mr. Donne to declare what had befallen him in the
short time of his absence? to which Mr. Donne was not able to make a
present answer, but after a long and perplexed pause, said, "I have
seen a dreadful vision since I saw you: I have seen my dear wife pass
twice by me through this room, with her hair hanging about her
shoulders, and a dead child in her arms; this I have seen since I saw
you." To which Sir Robert replied, "Sure Sir, you have slept since I
saw you, and this is the result of some melancholy dream, which I

< < Previous Page     Next Page > >

Other sites: