Christmas Carols, Ancient And Modern

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xxxvii
for the King; and on the 1st of the same month Edmund Taverner had a warrant for £1400 towards the charge of a mask to be presented at Whitehall the next Twelfth Night. A similar sum for a simi≠lar purpose was granted to Michael Oldisworth on 3rd January 1639-40. Many interesting particu≠lars connected with the royal masks will be found in Nichols's " Progresses of Elizabeth and James the First."
The Inns of Court continued to maintain their celebrity for these entertainments.* In 1635, in particular, there was a splendid one at the Middle Temple, when Mr. Francis Vivian, a gentleman of Cornwall, son of Sir Francis Vivian, was elected the Christmas Prince, and expended £2000 out of his own pocket to support his character with be≠coming state. But their revels were not confined to Christmas, for in February 1633 there was a cele≠brated mask called " The Triumph of Peace," pre≠sented jointly by the two Temples, Lincoln's Inn and Gray's Inn, which cost the Societies above £20,000. Evelyn in his Memoirs relates, that on 15th December, 1641, he was elected one of the Comptrollers of the Middle Temple revellers, " as the fashion of ye young Students and Gentlemen was, the Christmas being kept this yeare with greate solemnity;" but he got excused from serving.
An order still existed directing the nobility and gentry who had mansion-houses in the country " to repair to them to keep hospitality meet to their degrees;" as Sir J. Astley, on 20th of March, 1637-8, in consequence of ill health, obtained a licence to reside in London, or where he pleased,
* By an order, 17th Nov. 4th Charles I. all playing at Dice, Cards, or otherwise, is forbidden at Gray's Inn, ex≠cept during the 20 days in Christmas.

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