Date: c.1860

[ANON ] Notebook, approx 16 cm x 10cm ruled in pencil with sewn paper wraps, manuscript songs written on pp51 with a further pp6 at the rear of French songs divided by a few blanks. The songs are written in an easy to read hand in brown ink with some red highlighting and occasional pencil corrections. The front wrap has an index to the verso, and there is a photograph (of the kind usually pasted to cartes des visites) loosely tucked in showing presumably, the author. In the 1860’s Pig- sticking, practiced by cavalry regiments, was organised into hunts or tent clubs, with the Nagpur hunt, a likely candidate for the ownership of this manuscript given the Nagpur laudatory content, being founded in 1863. Cups were awarded for the member with the highest number of “first spears” [the first, but not necessarily the killing spear into the hapless creature] in a year. Initially, boars and sows were hunted, but later, members were fined for hunting sows, or boars that could not be ridden.It was regarded as a health-giving sport, and indeed, one of the songs reflects this idea; “That none so healthy were as those ,who stuck to sport and Beer”. There is no record of authorship, but some ” original poetry” is credited to “G.N.”. The poems and songs mainly praise boar hunting and hunters generally, and they include patriotic themes “The Oak” “The Red and the Blue” “ British Bayoneteers” etc. Indian place names feature : Nagpore, Kuramore, and Girhur, and there is a strong emphasis on beer drinking. An interesting and evocative manuscript from British Colonialism in India.


Offered by John Underwood Antiquarian Books