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History of the Gipsies
Chapter I - Continental Gipsies


BEFORE giving an account of the Gipsies in Scotland, I shall, by way of introduction, briefly notice the periods of time at which they were observed in the different states on the continent of Europe, and point out the different periods at which their governments found it necessary to expel them from their respective territories. I shall also add a few facts illustrative of the manners of the continental tribes, for the purpose of showing that those in Scotland, England, and Ireland, are all branches of the same stock. I shall, likewise, add a few facts illustrative of the tribe who found their way into England. I am indebted for my information on the early history of the continental Gipsies, chiefly to the works of Grellmann, Hoyland and Bright.

It appears that none of these wanderers had been seen in Christendom before the year 1400. [Sir Thomas Brown's vulgar errors.] But, in the beginning of the fifteenth, century, this people first attracted notice, and, within a few years after their arrival, had spread themselves over the whole continent. The earliest mention which is made of them, was in the years 1414 and 1417, when they were observed in Germany. In 1418, they were found in Switzerland; in 1422, in Italy; in 1427, they are mentioned as being in the neighbourhood of Paris; and about the same time, in Spain. [Bright's travels in Hungary.]

They seem to have received various appellations. In France, they were called Bohemians; in Holland, Heydens —heathens; in some parts of Germany, and in Sweden and Denmark, they were thought to be Tartars; but over Germany, in general, they were called Zigeuners, a word which means wanderers up and down. In Portugal, they received the name of Siganos; in Spain, Gitanos; and in Italy, Cinyari. They were also called in Italy, Hungary, and Germany, Tziganjs; and in Transylvania, Cyganis. Among the Turks, and other eastern nations, they were denominated Tschingenes; but the Moors and Arabians applied to them, perhaps, the most just appellation of any—Charami, robbers. [Royland's historical survey of the Gipsies.]

When they arrived at Paris, 17th August, 1427, nearly all of them had their ears bored, with one or two silver rings in each, which, they said, were esteemed ornaments in their country. The men were black, their hair curled ; the women remarkably black, and all their faces scarred." [Ibid.] Dr. Hurd, in his account of the different religions of the world, says, that the hair of these men was " frizzled," and that some of the women were witches, and "had hair like a horse's tail." It is, I think, to be inferred from this passage, that the men had designedly curled their hair, and that the hair of the females was long and coarse—not the short, woolly hair of the African. I have, myself, seen English female Gipsies with hair as long, coarse, and thick as a black horse's tail.

"At the time of the first appearance of the Gipsies, no certain information seems to have been obtained as to the country from which they came. It is, however, supposed that they entered Europe in the south-east, probably through Transylvania. At first, they represented themselves as Egyptian pilgrims, and, under that character, obtained considerable respect during half a century; being favoured by different potentates with passports, and letters of security. Gradually, however, they really -became, or were fancied, troublesome, and Italy, Sweden, Denmark and Germany, successively attempted their expulsion, in the sixteenth century." [Bright.]

With the exception of Hungary and Transylvania, it is believed that every state in Europe attempted either their expulsion or extermination; but, notwithstanding the dreadful severity of the numerous laws and edicts promulgated against them, they remained in every part of Europe, in defiance of every effort made by their respective governments to get rid of their unwelcome guests.

"German writers say that King Ferdinand of Spain, who esteemed it a good work to expatriate useful and profitable subjects—Jews, and even Moorish families—could much less be guilty of an impropriety, in laying hands on the mischievous progeny of Gipsies. The edict for their extermination was published in the year 1492. But, instead of passing the boundaries, they only slunk into hiding places, and shortly after appeared in as great numbers as before. The Emperor, Charles V, persecuted them afresh; as did Philip II. Since that time, they nestled in again, and were threatened with another storm, but it blew over without taking effect,

"In France, Francis I passed an edict for their expulsion, and at the assembly of the states of Orleans, in 1561, all governors of cities received orders to drive them out with fire and sword. Nevertheless, in process of time, they collected again, and increased to such a degree that, in 1612, a new order came out for their extermination. In the year 1572, they were compelled to retire from the territories of Milan and Parma; and, at a period somewhat earlier, they were chased beyond the Venetian jurisdiction.

They were not allowed the privilege of remaining in Denmark, as the code of Danish Iaw specifies: `The Tartar Gipsies, who wander about everywhere, doing great damage to the people, by their lies, thefts and witchcraft, shall be taken into custody by every magistrate.' Sweden was not more favourable, haying attacked them at three different times. A -very sharp order for their expulsion came out in 1662. The diet of 1723 published a second ; and that of 1727 repeated the foregoing, 'with. additional severity.
"They were excluded from the Netherlands, under the pain of death, by Charles V, and afterwards, by time United States, in 1582. But the greatest number of sentences of exile have been pronounced against them in Germany. The beginning was made under Maximilian I, at the Augsburg Diet, in 1500; and the same business occupied the attention of the Diet in 1530, 1544, 1548, and 1551; and was also again enforced, in the improved police regulations of Frankfort, in 1577. []Hoyland] The Germany entertained the notion that the Gipsies were spies for the Turks. They were not allowed to pass through, remain, or trade within the Empire. They were ordered to quit entirely the German dominions, by a certain day, and whoever injured them, after that period, was considered to have committed no crime.

"But a general extermination never did happen, for the law banishing them passed in one state before it was thought of in the next, or when a like order had long become obsolete, and sunk into oblivion. These undesirable guests were, therefore, merely compelled to shift their quarters to an adjoining state, where they remained till the government began to clear them away, upon which the fugitives either retired whence they came, or went on progressively to a third place—thus making a continual circle. [Grellmann.]

That almost the whole of Christendom had been so provoked by the conduct of the Gipsies as to have attempted their expulsion, or rather their extermination, merely because they were jugglers, fortune-tellers, astrologers, warlocks, witches and impostors, is a thing not for a moment to be supposed. I am inclined to believe that the true cause of the promulgation of the excessively sanguinary laws and edicts, for the extermination of the whole Gipsy nation in Europe, must be looked for in much more serious crimes than those mentioned; and that these greater offences can be no other than theft and robbery, and living upon the inhabitants of the countries through which they travelled, at free quarters, or what we, in Scotland, call sorning.

[Dr. Hurd says, at page 785, "Our over credulous ancestors vainly imagined that those Gipsies or Bohemians were so many spies for the Turks; and that, in order to expiate the crimes which they had committed in their own country, they were condemned to steal from and rob the Christians."

(Living at free quarters by force, or masterful begging, or "sorning," is surely a trifling, though troublesome, offence for the original condition of a wandering tribe, which has so progressed as, at the present day, to fill some of the first positions in Scotland,-Ed)]

But, on the other hand, I am convinced that the Gipsies have committed few murders on individuals out of their own tribe. As far as our authorities go, the general character of these people seems to have been the same, wherever they have made their appearance on the face of the earth; and the chief and leading feature of that extraordinary character appears to me to have been, in general, an hereditary propensity to theft and robbery, in men, women and children.

In whatever country we find the Gipsies, their manners, habits, and cast of features are uniformly the same. Their occupations are in every respect the same. They were, on the continent, horse-dealers, innkeepers, workers in iron, musicians, astrologers, jugglers, and fortune-tellers by palmistry. They are also accused of cheating, lying, and witchcraft, and, in general, charged with being thieves and robbers. They roam up and down the country, without any fixed habitations, living in tents, and hawking small trifles of merchandise for the use of the people among whom they travel. The whole race were great frequenters of fairs. They seldom formed matrimonial alliances out of their own tribe. [Hoyland] It will be seen, in another part of this work, that time language of the continental Gipsies is the same as that of those in Scotland, England and Ireland. As to the religious opinions of the continental Gipsies, they appear to have had none at all. It is said they were "worse than heathens." "It is, in reality," says Twist, "almost absurd to talk of the religion of this set of people, whose moral characters are so depraved as to make it evident they believe in nothing; capable of being a cheek to their passions." "Indeed," adds Hoyland, "it is asserted that no Gipsy has any idea of submission to any fixed profession of faith." It appears to me that, to secure to themselves protection from the different governments, they only conformed outwardly to the customs and religion of the country in which they happened to reside at the time.

Cantemir, according to Grellmann, says that the Gipsies are dispersed all over Moldavia, where every baron has several families subject to him. In Wallachia and the Sclavonian countries they are quite as numerous. In Wallachia and Moldavia they are divided into two classes—the princely and boyardish. The former, according to Sulzer, amount to many thousands; but that is triflng in comparison with the latter, as there is not a single Boyard in Wallachia who has not at least three or four of them for slaves; the rich have often some hundreds under their command.

[In the narrative of the Scottish Church Mission of Enquiry to the Jews, in 1839, are to be found the following remarks relative to the Gipsies of Wallachia:

"They are almost all slaves, bought and sold at pleasure. One was lately sold for 200 piastres, but the general price is 500. Perhaps £3 is the average price, and the female Gipsies are sold much cheaper. The sale is generally carried on by private bargain. The men are the best mechanics in the country; so that smiths and masons are taken from this class. The women are considered the best cooks, and therefore almost every wealthy family has a Gipsy cook. Their appearance is similar to that of the Gipsies in other countries; being all dark, with fine black eyes, and long black hair. They have a language peculiar to themselves, and though they seem to have no system of religion, yet are very superstitious in observing lucky and unlucky days. They are all fond of music, both vocal and instrumental, and excel in it. There is a class of them called the Turkish Gipsies, who have purchased their freedom from government; but these are few in number, and all from Turkey. Of these latter, there are twelve families in Galatz. The men are employed as horse-dealers, and the women in making bags, sacks, and such articles. In winter, they live in town, almost under ground; but in summer, they pitch their tents in the open air, for, though still within the bounds of the town, they would not live in their winter houses during summer."

That these Gipsies should be in a state of slavery is, perhaps, a more marked exception to their race than the Indians in Spanish America were to those found in the territories colonized by the Anglo-Saxons. The Ism-press Maria Theresa could make nothing of the Gipsies in Hungary, where they are said to be almost as little looked after as the wolves of the forest; so that the slavery of the Gipsies in Wallachia must be of a very nominal or mild nature, or the subjects of it must be far in excess of the demand, if £3 is the average price of a good smith or mason, and less for a good female cook. These Wallachian Gipsies evidently prefer a master whose property they will consider as their own, and whose protection v ill relieve them from the interference and oppression of others. A slavery that is not absolute or oppressive must gratify the vanity of the owner, and ho easily borne by a race that is semi-civilized and despised by others around it.

Since the conclusion of the Russian war, the manumission of the Gipsies of the Principalities was debated and carried by a majority of something like thirteen against eleven; but I am not aware of its having been put in force. They are said to have been greatly attached to the late Sultan—calling him the "good father," for the interest he took in them. As spies, they rendered his generals efficient services, while contending with the Russians on the Hanube.—Ed.]

Grellmann divides those in Transylvania into four classes: 1st, city Gipsies, who are the most civilized of all, and maintain themselves by music, smith-work, selling old clothes, horse-dealing, &;c.; 2d. gold-washers; 3d. tent Gipsies ; and 4th. Egyptian Gipsies. These last are more filthy, and more addicted to stealing than any of the others. Those who are gold-washers, in Transylvania and the Banat, have no intercourse with others of their nation; nor do they like to be called Gipsies. They sift gold sand in summer, and in winter make trays and troughs, which they sell in an honest way. They seldom beg, and more rarely steal. Dr. Clarke says of the Wallachian Gipsies, that they are not an idle race; they ought rather to be described as a laborious race; and the majority honestly endeavour to earn a livelihood.

"Bessarabia, all Turley, Bulgaria, Greece, and Romania swarm with Gipsies ; even in Constantinople they are innunierable. In Romania, a large tract of Mount IIvemus, which they inhabit, has acquired from them the name of Tschenyhe Valleen—Gipsy Mountain. This district extends from the city of Aydos quite to Phillippopolis, and contains more Gipsies than any other province in the Turkish empire.

"'They were universally to be found in Italy, insomuch that even Sicily and Sardinia were not free. But they were most numerous in the dominions of the Church; probably because there was the worst police, with much superstition. By the former, they were left undisturbed ; and the latter enticed them to deceive the ignorant, as it afforded them an opportunity of obtaining a plentiful contribution by their fortune-telling and enchanted amulets. There was a general law throughout Italy, that no Gipsy should remain more than two nights in any one place. By this regulation, it is true, no place retained its guests long; but no sooner was one gone than another came in his room: it was a continual circle, and quite as convenient to them as a perfect toleration would have been. Italy rather suffered than benefited by this law; as, by keeping these people in constant motion, they would do more mischief there, than in places where they were permitted to remain stationary.

"In Poland and Lithuania, as well as in Courland, there are an amazing number of Gipsies. A person may live many years in Upper Saxony, or in the districts of Hanover and Brunswick, without seeing a single Gipsy. When one happens to stray into a village or town, lie occasions as much disturbance as if the black gentleman with his cloven foot appeared ; he frightens children from their play, and draws the attention of the older people, till the police get hold of him, and make hint again invisible. In some of the provinces of the Rhine, a Gipsy is a very common sight. Some years ago, there were such numbers of them in the Duchy of Wurtemberg, that they were seen lying about everywhere; but the government ordered departments of soldiers to drive them from their holes and lurking-places throughout the country, and then transported the congregated swarm, in the same manner as they were treated by the Duke of Deuxponts. In France, before the Revolution, there were but few Gipsies, for the obvious reason that every Gipsy who could be apprehended feIl a sacrifice to the police." [Grellmann.—I would suppose that these severe edicts of the French world drive the Gipsics to adopt the costume and manners of the other inhabitants. In this way they would disappear from the public eye. The officers of justice would of course direct their attention to what would be understood to be Gipsies—that is tented Gipsies, or those who professed the ways of Gipsies, such as fortune telling. 1 have met with a French Gipsy in the streets of New York, engaged as a dealer in candy—ED.]

As regards the Gipsies of Spain, Dr. Bright remarks: That the disposition of the Gitano is more inclined to a fixed residence than that of the Gipsy of other countries, is beyond doubt. The generality are the settled inhabitants of considerable towns, and, although the occupations of some necessarily lead them to a more vagrant Iife, the proportion is small who do not consider some hovel in a suburb as a home. 'Money is in the city—not in the country,' is a saying frequently in their months. In the vilest quarters of every large town of the southern provinces, there are Gitanos Iiving together, sometimes occupying whole barriers. But Seville is, perhaps, the spot in which the largest proportion is found. Their principal occupation is the manufacture and sale of articles of iron. Their quarters may always be traced by the ring of the hammer and anvil, and many amass considerable wealth. An inferior class have the exclusive trade in second-hand articles, which they sell at the doors of their dwellings, or at benches at the entrance of towns, or by the sides of frequented walks. A still inferior order wander abort, mending pots, and selling tong and other trifling articles. In Cadiz, they monopolize the trade of butchering, and frequently amass wealth. Others, again, exclusively fill the office of Matador of the Bull Plaza, while the Tereros are fir the most part of the same race. Others are employed as dressers of mules and asses; some as figure-dancers, and many as performers in the theatre. Some gain a livelihood by their musical talents. Dancing, singing, music and fortune-telling are the only objects of general pursuit for the females. Sometimes they dance in the inferior theatres, and sing and dance in the streets. Palmistry is one of their most productive avocations. In Seville, a few make and sell an inferior kind of mat. Besides these, there is a class of Gipsies in Spain who lead a vagrant life throughout—residing chiefly in the woods and mountains, and known as mountaineers. These rarely visit towns, and live by fraud and pillage. There are also others who wander about the country—such as tinkers, dancers, singers, and jobbers in asses and mules.

Bishop Pocoke, prior to 1745, mentions having met with Gipsies in the northern part of Syria, where he found them in great numbers, passing for Mahommedans, living in tents or caravans, dealing in milch cows, when near towns, manufacturing coarse carpets, and having a much better character than their relations in Hungary or England. By the census of the Crimea, in 1793, the population was set down at 157,125, of which 3,225 were Gipsies. Bishop Heber states that the Persian Gipsies are of much better caste, and much richer than those of India, Russia or England. In India, he says, the Gipsies are the same tall, fine-limbed, bony, slender people, with the same large, black, brilliant eyes, lowering forehead, and long hair, curled at the extremities, which are to be met with on a common in England. lie mentions, in his journal of travels through Bengal, having met with a Gipsy camp on the Ganges. The women and children followed him, begging, and had no clothes on them, except a coarse kind of veil, thrown back from the shoulders, and a ragged cloth, wrapped round their waists, like a petticoat. One of the women was very pretty, and the forms of all the three were such as a sculptor would have been glad to take as his models.

Besides those in Europe, it is stated by Grellmann that time Gipsies are also scattered over Asia, and are to be found in the centre of Africa. In Europe alone, lie supposes (in 1782), their number will amount to between seven and eight hundred thousand. So numerous did they become in France, that the king, in 1545, sixteen years before they were expelled from that kingdom, entertained an idea of embodying four thousand of them, to act as pioneers in taking Boulogne, then in possession of England. It is impossible to ascertain, at time present clay, how many Gipsies might be even in a parish ; but, taking in the whole world, there must be an immense number in existence.

About the time the Gipsies first appeared in Europe, their chiefs, under the titles of dukes, earls, lords, counts, and knights of Little Egypt, rode up and down the country on horseback, dressed in gay apparel, and ' attended by a train of ragged and miserable inferiors, having, also, hawks and hounds in their retinue. It appears to nic, that the excessive vanity of these chiefs had induced them, in imitation of the customs of civilized society, to assume these high-sounding European titles of honour. I have not observed, on record, any form of government, laws of customs, by which the internal affairs of the tribe, on the Continent, were regulated. On these important points, if' I ain not mistaken, all the authors, with the exception of' Grellmann, Who have written on the Gipsies, are silent. GrelImnaun says of the Hungarian Gipsies: They still continue the custom among themselves of dignifying certain persons, whom they make heads over them, and call by the exalted Sclavonian title of Waywode. To choose their Waywode, the Gipsies take the opportunity, when a great number of them are assembled in one place, commonly in the open field. The elected person is lifted up three times, amidst the loudest acclamation, and confirmed in his dignity by presents. his wife undergoes the same ceremony. When this solemnity is performed, they separate with great conceit, imagining themselves people of more consequence than electors returning from the choice of an emperor. Every one who is of a family descended from a former Waywode is eligible ; but those who are best clothed, not very poor, of large stature, and about the middle age, have generally the preference. The particuIar distinguishing mark of dignity is a large whip, hanging over the shoulder. His outward deportment, his walk and air, also plainly show his head to be filled with notions of authority." According to the same authority, the Waywode of the Gipsies in Courland is distinguished from the principals of the hordes in other countries, being not only much respected by his own people, but even by the ConrIand nobility. Ile is esteemed a man of high rank, and is frequently to be met with at entertainments, and card parties, in the first families, where he is always a welcome guest. his dress is uncommonly rich, in comparison with others of his tribe ; generally silk in summer, and constantly velvet in winter.

As a specimen of the manners and ferocious disposition of the German Gipsies, so late as the year 1720, I shall here transcribe a few extracts front an article published in Black-wood's Magazine, for January, 1818. This interesting article is partly an abridged translation, or rather the substance, of a German work on the Gipsies, entitled "A. Circumstantial Account of the Famous Egyptian Band of Thieves, and Robbers, and Murderers, whose Leaders were executed at Giessen, by Cord, and Sword, and Wheel, on the 14th and 15th November, 1726, &c." It is edited by Dr. John Benjamin Wiessenburch, an assessor of the criminal tribunal by which these malefactors were condemned, and published at Frankfort and l..eipsic, in the year 1727. The translator of this work is Sir Walter Scott, who obligingly offered me the use of his " scraps" on this subject. The following are the details in his own words

"A curious preliminary dissertation records some facts respecting the German Gipsies, which are not uninteresting.

"From the authorities collected by Wiessenburch, it appears that these wanderers first appeared in Germany during the reign of Sigismund. The exact year has been disputed; but it is generally placed betwixt 1416 and 1420. They appeared in various bands, under chiefs, to whom they acknowledged obedience, and who assumed the titles of dukes and earls. 'These leaders originally affected a certain degree of consequence, travelling well equipped, and on horseback, and bringing hawks and hounds in their retinue. Like John Faw, `Lord of Little Egypt,' they sometimes succeeded in imposing upon the Germans the belief in their very apocryphal dignity, which they assumed during their lives, and recorded upon their tombs, as appears from three epitaphs, quoted by Dr. Wiessenburch. One is in a convent at Steinbach, and records that on St. Sebastians' ere, 1445, `died the Lord Paunel, Duke of Little Egypt, and Baron of Hirschhorn, in the same land.' A. monumental inscription at Ban Liner, records the death of the 'Noble Earl Peter, of Lesser Egypt, in 1453;' and a third, at Pferz, as late as 1498, announces the death of the 'high-born, Lord John, Earl of Little Egypt, to whose soul God be gracious and merciful.'

"In describing the state of the German Gipsies, in 1726, the author whom we are quoting gives the leading features proper to those in other countries. Their disposition to wandering, to idleness, to theft, to polygamy, or rather promiscuous licence, are all commemorated; nor are the women's pretentious to fortune-telling, and their practice of stealing children, omitted. Instead of travelling in very large bands, as at their first arrival, they are described as forming small parties, in which the females are far more numerous than the men, and which are each under command of a leader, chosen rather from reputation than by right of birth. The men, unless when engaged in robbery or theft, lead a life of absolute idleness, and are supported by what the women can procure by begging, stealing or telling fortunes. 'These resources are so scanty that they often suffer the most severe extremities of hunger and cold. Some of the Gipsies executed at Giessen pretended that they had not eaten a morsel of bread for four days before they were apprehended ; yet are they so much attached to freedom, and licence of this wandering life, that, notwithstanding its miseries, it has not only been found impossible to reclaim the native Gipsies, who claim it by inheritance, but even those who, not born in that state, have associated themselves with their bands, and become so wedded to it, as to prefer it to all others. [The natives here alluded to were evidently Germans, married to Gipsy women, or Germans brought up from infancy with the Gipsies, or mixed Gipsies, taking after Germans in point of appearance --ED.]

"As an exception, Wiessenburch mentions some gangs, where the men, as in Scotland, exercise the profession of travelling smiths, or tinkers, or deal in pottery, or practise as musicians. Finally, he notices that in Hungary the gangs assumed their names from the countries which they chiefly traversed, as the band of Upper Saxony, of Brandenburg, and so forth. They resented, to extremity, any attempt on the part of other Gipsies to intrude on their province ; and such interference often led to battles, in which they shot each other with as little remorse as they would have done to dogs. [This is the only continental writer, that I am aware of, who mentions the circumstance of the Gipsies having districts to themselves, from which others of their race were excluded. This author also speaks of the German Gipsies stealing children. John Bunyan admits the same practice in England, when lie compares his feelings, as a sinner, to those of a child carried off by Gipsies. He gives the Gipsy women credit for this practice —Ed.] By these acts of cruelty to each other, they became gradually familiarized with blood, as well as with arias, to which another cause contributed, in the beginning of the 18th century.

"In former times, these outcasts were not permitted to hear arms in the service of any Christian power, but the long wars of Louis XIV had abolished this point of delicacy; and both in the French army, and those of the confederates, the stoutest and boldest of the Gipsies were occasionally enlisted, by choice or compulsion. These men generally tired soon of the rigour of military discipline, and escaping from their regiments, on the first opportunity, went back to their forests, with some knowledge of arms, and habits bolder and more ferocious than those of their predecessors. Such deserters soon become leaders among the tribes, whose enterprises became, in proportion, more audacious and desperate.

"In Germany, as in most other kingdoms of Europe, severe laws had been directed against this vagabond people, and the Landnraves of Hesse had not been behind-hand in such denunciations. They were, on their arrest, branded as vagabonds, punished with stripes, and banished from the circle; and, in case of their return, were put to death without mercy. These measures only served to make them desperate. Their bands became more strong and more open in their depredations. They often marched as strong as fifty or a hundred armed men; bade defiance to the ordinary police, and plundered the villages in open day; Wounded and slew the peasants, who endeavoured to protect their property ; and skirmished, in some instances successfully, with parties of soldiers and militia, dispatched against them. Their chiefs, on these occasions, were John La Fortune, a determined villain, otherwise named Hemperla; another called the Great Gallant; his brother, Antony AIexander, called the Little Gallant; and others, entitled Lorries, Lampert, Gabriel, &c. Their ferocity may be judged of from the following instances:

"On the 10th October, 1724, a land-lieutenant, or officer of police, named Emerander, set off with two assistants to disperse a band of Gipsies who had appeared near Hirzenliayn, in the territory of StoIberg. He seized on two or three stragglers whom lie found in the village, and whom, females as well as males, he seems to have treated with much severity. Some, however, escaped to a large band which lay in an °adjacent forest, who, under command of the Great Gallant, Hemperla, Antony Alexander, and others, immediately put themselves in motion to rescue their comrades, and avenge themselves of Emerander. The land-lieutenant had the courage to ride out to meet them, with his two attendants, at the passage of a bridge, where lie fired his pistol at the advancing gang, and called out ' charge,' as if he had been at the Bead of a party of cavalry. The Gipsies, however, aware, from the report of the fugitives, how weakly the officer was accompanied, continued to advance to the end of the bridge, and ten or twelve, dropping each on one knee, gave fire on, Emerander, who was then obliged to turn his horse and ride off, leaving his two assistants to the mercy of the banditti. One of these men, called Hempel, was instantly beaten down, and suffered, especially at the hands of the Gipsy women, much cruel and abominable outrage. After stripping him of every rag of his clothes, they were about to murder the wretch outright; but at the earnest instance of the landlord of the inn, they contented themselves with beating him dreadfully, and imposing on him an oath that he never more would persecute any Gipsy, or save any fleshman, (dealer in human flesh,) for so they called the officers of justice or police. [Great allowance ought to be made for the conduct of these Gipsies. Even at the present day, a Gipsy, in many parts of Germany, is not allowed to enter a town; nor will the inhabitants permit him to live in the street in which they dwell, lie has therefore to go somewhere, and live in some way or other. In speaking of the Gipsies, people never take these circumstances into account. The Gipsies alluded to in the text seem to have been very cruelly treated, in the first place, by the authorities.—Ed.]

"The other assistant of Emerander made his escape. But the principal was not so fortunate. When the Gipsies had -wrought their wicked pleasure on Hempel, they compelled the landlord of the little inn to bring them a flagon of brandy, in which they mingled a charge of gunpowder and three pinches of salt; and each, partaking of this singular beverage, took a solemn oath that they would stand by each other until they had cut thongs, as they expressed it, out of the fleshman's hide. The Great Gallant at the same time distributed to them, out of a little box, billets, which each was directed to swallow, and which were supposed to render them invulnerable.

"Thus inflamed and encouraged, the whole route, amounting to fifty well armed men, besides women armed with clubs and axes, set off with horrid screams to a neighbouring hamlet, called Glazhutte, in which the object of their resentment sought refuge. They took military possession of the streets, posting sentinels to prevent interruption or attack from the alarmed inhabitants. Their leaders then presented themselves before the inn, and demanded that Emerander should be delivered up to them. When the innkeeper endeavoured to elude their demand, they forced their way into the house, and finding the unhappy object of pursuit concealed in a garret, Hemperla and others fired their muskets at him, then tore his clothes from his body, and precipitated him down the staircase, where he was dispatched with many wounds.

"Meanwhile, the inhabitants of the village began to take to arms ; and one of them attempted to ring the alarm-bell, but was prevented by an armed Gipsy, stationed for that purpose. At length their bloody work being ended, the Gipsies assembled and retreated out of the town, with shouts of triumph, exclaiming that the fleshman was slain, displaying their spoils and hands stained with blood, and headed hr the Great Gallant, riding on the horse of the murdered officer.

"I shall select from the volume another instance of this people's cruelty still more detestable, since even vengeance or hostility could not be alleged for its stimulating cause, as in the foregoing narrative. A country clergyman, named Heinsius, the pastor of a village called Dorsdorff, who had the misfortune to be accounted a man of some wealth, was the subject of this tragedy.

"Hemperla, already mentioned, with a band of ten Gipsies, and a, villain named Essper George, who had joined himself with them, though not of their nation by birth, beset the house of the unfortunate minister, with a resolution to break in and possess themselves of his money ; and if interrupted by the peasants, to fire upon them, and repel force by force. With this desperate intention, they surrounded the parsonage-house at midnight; and their Ieader, Hemperla, having cut a hole through the cover of the sink or gutter, endeavoured to creep into the house through that passage, holding in his hand a lighted torch made of straw. The daughter of the parson chanced, however, to be up, and in the kitchen, at this late hour, by which fortunate circumstance she escaped the fate of her father and mother. When the Gipsy saw there was a person in the kitchen, he drew himself back out of the gutter, and ordered his gang to force the door, regarding the noise which accompanied this violence as little as if the place had been situated in a wilderness, instead of a populous hamlet. Others of the gang were posted at the windows of the house, to prevent the escape of the inmates. Nevertheless, the young woman, already mentioned, let herself down from a window which had escaped their notice, and ran to seek assistance for her parents.

"In the meanwhile the Gipsies had burst open the outward door of the house, with a beam of wood which chanced to be lying in the court-yard. They next forced the door of the sitting apartment, and were met by the poor clergyman, who prayed them at least to spare his life and that of his wife. But he spoke to men who knew no mercy; Hemperla struck him on the breast with a torch ; and receiving the blow as a signal for death, the poor man staggered back to the table, and sinking in a chair, leaned his head on his hand, and expected the mortal blow. In this posture Hemperla shot him dead with a pistol. The wife of the clergyman endeavoured to fly, on witnessing the murder of her husband, but was dragged back, and slain by a pistol shot, fired either by Essper George, or by a Gipsy called Christian. By a crime so dreadful those murderers only gained four silver cups, fourteen silver spoons, some trilling articles of apparel, and about twenty-two florins in money. They might have made more important booty, but the sentinel, whom they left on the outside, now intimated to them that the hamlet was alarmed, and that it was time to retire, which they did accordingly, undisturbed and in safety.

The Gipsies committed many enormities similar to those above detailed, and arrived at such a pitch of audacity as even to threaten the person of the Landgrave himself; an enormity at which Dr. Wiessenburch, who never introduces the name or titles of that prince without printing them in letters of at least an inch long, expresses becoming horror. This was too much to be endured. Strong detachments of troops and militia scoured the country in different directions, and searched the woods and caverns which served the banditti for places of retreat. These measures were for some time attended with little effect. The Gipsies had the advantages of a perfect knowledge of the, country, and excellent intelligence. They baffled the efforts of the officers detached against then, and on one or two occasions, even engaged them with advantage. And when some females, unable to follow the retreat of the men, were made prisoners on such an occasion, the leaders caused it to be intimated to the authorities at Giessen that if their women were not set at liberty, they would murder and rob on the high roads, and plunder and burn the country. This state of warfare lasted from 1718 until 1726, during which period the subjects of the Landgrave suffered the utmost hardships, as no man was secure against nocturnal surprise of his property and person.

At length, in the end of 1725, a heavy and continued storm of snow compelled the Gipsy hordes to abandon the woods which had long served them as a refuge, and to approach more near to the dwellings of men. As their move-merits could be traced and observed, the land-lieutenant, Krocker, who had been an assistant to the murdered Emerander, received intelligence of a band of Gipsies having appeared in the district of Sohnsassenheim, at a village called Fauerbach. Being aided by a party of soldiers and volunteers, he had the luck to secure the whole gang, being twelve men and women. Among these was the notorious Hemperla, who was dragged by the heels from an oven in which he was attempting to conceal himself. Others were taken in the same manner, and imprisoned at Giessen, with a view to their trial.

"Numerous acts of theft, and robbery, and murder were laid to the charge of these unfortunate wretches; and, according to the existing laws of the empire, they were interrogated under torture. They were first tormented by means of thumb-screws, which they did not seem greatly to regard the Spanish boots, or `leg-vices,' were next applied, and seldom failed to extort confession. Hemperla alone set both gleans at defiance, which induced the judges to believe lie was possessed of some spell against these agonies. Having in vain searched his body for the supposed charm, they caused his Bair to be cut off; on which lie himself observed that, had they not done so, he could have stood the torture for some time longer. As it was, his resolution gave way, and he made, under the second application of the Spanish boots, a full confession, not only of the murders of which he was accused, but of various other crimes. While he was in this agony, the judges had the cruelty to introduce his mother, a noted Gipsy woman, called the crone, into the torture-chamber; who shrieked fearfully, and tore her face with her nails, on perceiving the condition of her son, and still more on hearing him acknowledge his guilt.

"Evidence of the guilt of the other prisoners was also obtained from their confessions, with or without torture, and from the testimony of witnesses examined by the fiscal. Sentence was finally passed on them, condemning four Gipsies, among whom were Hemperla and the Little Gallant, to be broken on the wheel, nine others to be hanged, and thirteen, of whom the greater part were women, to be beheaded. They underwent their doom with great firmness, upon the 14th and 15th November, 1726.

"The volume contains ...... some rude prints, representing the murders committed by the Gipsies, and the manner of their execution. There are also two prints representing the portraits of the principal criminals, in which, though the execution be indifferent, the Gipsy features may be clearly traced."

Leaving this view of the character of the continental Gipsies, we may take the following as illustrative of one of its brighter aspects. So late as the time of the celebrated Baron Trenck, it would appear that Germany was still infested with prodigiously large bands of Gipsies. In a forest near Ginnen, to which he had fled, to conceal himself from the pursuit of his persecutors, the Baron says: "Here we fell in with a gang of Gipsies, (or rather banditti,) amounting to four hundred men, who dragged me to 'their camp. They were mostly French and Prussian deserters, and, thinking me their equal, would force me to become one of their band. But venturing to tell my story to their leader, he presented me with a crown, gave us a small portion of bread and meat, and suffered us to depart in peace, after having been four-and-twenty Hours in their company. [Life of Baron Trenck, translated by Thomas Holcroft, Vol. I., page 138.]

I shall conclude the notices of the continental Gipsies by some extracts from an article published in a French periodical work, for September, 1802, on the Gipsies of the Pyrenees; who resemble, in many points, the inferior class of our Scottish Tinklers, about the beginning of the French war, more, perhaps, than those of any other country in Europe.

"There exists, in the department of the Eastern Pyrenees, a people distinct from the rest of the inhabitants, of a foreign origin, and without any settled habits. It seems to have fixed its residence there for a considerable time. It changes its situation, multiplies there, and never connects itself by marriage with the other inhabitants. This people are called Gitanos, a Spanish word which signifies Egyptians. There are many Gitanos in Catalonia, who have similar habits to the above-mentioned, but who are very strictly watched. They have all the vices of those Egyptians, or Bohemians, who formerly used to wander over the world, telling fortunes, and living at the expense of superstition and credulity. These Gitanos, less idle and less wanderers than their predecessors, are afraid of publicly professing the art of fortune tellers; but their manner of life is scarcely different.

'They scatter themselves among villages, and lonesome farms, where they steal fruit, poultry, and often even cattle; in short, everything that is portable. They are almost always abroad, incessantly watching an opportunity to practise their thievery ; they hide themselves with much dexterity from the search of the police. Their women, in particular, have an uncommon dexterity in pilfering. When they enter a shop, they are watched with the utmost care ; but with every precaution they are not free from their rapines. They excel, above all, in hiding the pieces of silver which are given in exchange for gold, which they never fail to offer in payment, and they are so well bidden that they are often obliged to be undressed before restitution can be obtained.

"The Gitanos affect, externally, a great attachment to the Catholic religion ; and if one was to judge from the number of reliques they carry about with therm, one would believe them exceedingly devout; but all who have well observed them assure us they areas ignorant as hypocritical, and that they practise secretly a religion of their own. It is not rare to see their women, who have been Iately brought to bed, have their children baptized several times, in different places, in order to obtain money from persons at their ease, whom they choose for godfathers. Everything announces among them that moral degradation which must necessarily attach to a miserable, insulated caste, as strangers to society, which only suffers it through an excess of contempt.

"The Gitanos are disgustingly filthy, and almost all covered with rags. They have neither tables, chairs, nor beds, but sit and eat on the ground. They are crowded in huts, pell-mell, in straw ; and their neglect of the decorum of society, so dangerous to morals, must have the most melancholy consequences on wretched vagabonds, abandoned to themselves. They consequently are accused of giving themselves up to every disorder of the most infamous debauchery, and to respect neither the ties of blood nor the protecting laws of the virtues of families.

"They feed on rotten poultry and fish, dogs and stinking cats, which they seek for with avidity ; and when this resource fails them, they live on the entrails of animals, or other aliments of the lowest price. They leave their meat but a very few minutes on the fire, and the place where they cook it exhales an infectious smell.

"They speak the Catalonian dialect, but they have, besides, a language to themselves, unintelligible to the natives of the country, from whom they are very careful to hide the knowledge of it.

"The Gitanos are tanned like the mulattoes, of a size above mediocrity, well formed, active, robust, supporting all the changes of seasons, and sleeping in the open fields, whenever their interest requires it. Their features are irregular, and show them to belong to a transplanted race. They have the mouth very wide, thick lips, and high cheek-bones.

"As the distrust, they inspire causes them to be carefully watched, it is not always possible for them to live by stealing: they then have recourse to .industry, and a trifling trade, which seems to have been abandoned to them; they show animals, and attend the fairs and markets, to sell or exchange mules and asses, which they know how to procure at a cheap rate. They are commonly cast-off animals, which they have the art to dress up, and they are satisfied, in appearance, with a moderate profit, which, however, is always more than is supposed, because they feed these animals at the expense of the farmers. They ramble all night, in order to steal fodder ; and whatever precautions may have been taken against them, it is not possible to be always guarded against their address.

"Happily the Gitanos are not murderers. It would, without doubt, be important to examine if it is to the natural goodness of their disposition, to their frugality, and the few wants they feel in their state of half savage, that is to be attributed the sentiment that repels them from great crimes, or if this disposition arises from their habitual state of alarm, or from that want of courage which must be a necessary consequence of the infamy in which they are plunged. [Annals de Statistique, .No. III, page 31-37.—What the writer of this article says of the aversion which the Gipsies have to the shedding of human blood, not of their own fraternity, appears to have been universal among the tribe; but, on the other hand, they seem to have had little or no hesitation in putting to death those of their own tribe. This writer also says, that the Gipsies of the Pyrenees have a religion of their own, which they practise secretly, without mentioning what this secret religion is. It is probable that his remark is applicable to the sacrifice of horses, as described in chapter viii.]

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