Page:Horse shoes and horse shoeing.djvu/322

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.

passing through that town, found one of her horses lame from the loss of a shoe, and there was no one who could replace it. She forthwith issued a mandate compelling all peers of the realm to forfeit a horse's shoe when passing through the locality, or the payment of a fine. The proceeds accruing therefrom were devoted to the maintenance of a blacksmith.'[1] This tradition is not a very probable one, as it conflicts with nearly all the others; the custom is, in all likelihood, of an earlier date than the days of Queen Elizabeth.

Blount, in his 'Jocular Tenures,' informs us that a Duke of York once paid a silver horse-shoe to Lord Ferrers, and that a silver horse-shoe is due from every scion of royalty who rides across one of his manors. Of the shoes seen by Evelyn, three at least are said to remain—those bearing the names of Earl Gainsborough, Henry Montagu, and Lord Gray. Among the more notable ones of later date are those presented by the Earl of Cardigan in 1667, Lord Ipswich in 1687, Lord Guildford in 1690, and Lady Percy in 1771. More than thirty years ago, Queen Victoria acknowledged the right of Oakham, as her uncles, the Prince Regent and the Duke of York, had done before her; and the late Duke of Wellington soon followed her example. The law itself has sanctioned this unique species of taxation, Lords Denham, Campbell, and Wensleydale having followed the precedent of the famous Lord Mansfield. The day upon which Lord Campbell's horse-shoe was added to the collection of trophies, was a red-letter one in the chronicles of Oakham Hall, for on that day it recovered its long-lost 'golden shoe.' This

  1. F. F. Collins, Royal Dragoons. The Veterinarian, p. 663, 1867.