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Notes and Queries, Number 27, May 4, 1850   By:

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"When found, make a note of." CAPTAIN CUTTLE.

No. 27.] SATURDAY, MAY 4, 1850 [Price Threepence. Stamped Edition 4d.



NOTES: The Mosquito Country. 425 Notes on Bacon and Jeremy Taylor. 427 Duke of Monmouth's Correspondence. 427 Poem by Parnell, by Peter Cunningham. 427 Early English and Early German Literature, by S. Hickson. 428 Folk Lore: Charm for the Toothache The Evil Eye Charms Roasted Mouse. 429 The Anglo Saxon Word "Unl├Žd," by S.W. Singer. 430 Dr. Cosin's MSS. Index to Baker's MSS., by J.E.B. Mayor. 433 Arabic Numerals. 433 Roman Numerals. 434 Error in Hallam's History of Literature. 434 Notes from Cunningham's Handbook for London. 434 Anecdote of Charles I. 437

QUERIES: The Maudelyne Grace, by E.F. Rimbault, LL.D. 437 "Esquire" and "Gentleman". 437 Five Queries (Lines by Suckling, &c.) 439 Queries proposed, No. I., by Belton Corney. 439 Minor Queries: Elizabeth and Isabel Howard Earl of Surrey Bulls called "William" Bawn Mutual Versicle and Response Yeoman Pusan Iklynton Collar Lord Karinthen Christian Captives Ancient Churchyard Customs "Rotten Row" and "Stockwell Street". 439

REPLIES: Early Statistics. 441 Byron's Lara. 443 Replies to Minor Queries: Dr. Whichcot and Lord Shaftesbury Black Doll Journal of Sir W. Beeston Shrew Trunk Breeches Queen's Messengers Dissenting Ministers Ballad of the Wars in France Monody on Death of Sir J. Moore. 444

Iron Rails round St. Paul's. 446

MISCELLANEOUS: Notes on Books, Sales, Catalogues, &c. 446 Books and Odd Volumes Wanted. 446 Notices to Correspondents. 446 Advertisements. 447


The subject of the Mosquito country has lately acquired a general interest. I am anxious to insert the following "Notes and Queries" in your useful periodical, hoping thus to elicit additional information, or to assist other inquirers.

1. As to the origin of the name. I believe it to be probably derived from an native name of a tribe of Indians in that part of America. The Spanish Central Americans speak of Moscos . Juarros, A Spanish Central American author, in his History of Guatemala , names the Moscos among other Indians inhabiting the north eastern corner of that tract of country now called Mosquito : and in the "Mosquito Correspondence" laid before Parliament in 1848, the inhabitants of Mosquito are called Moscos in the Spanish state papers.

How and when would Mosco have become Mosquito ? Was it a Spanish elongation of the name, or an English corruption? In the former case, it would probably have been another name of the people: in the latter, probably a name given to the part of the coast near which the Moscos lived.

The form Mosquito , or Moskito , or Muskito , (as the word is variously spelt in our old books), is doubtless as old as the earliest English intercourse with the Indians of the Mosquito coast; and that may be as far back as about 1630: it is certainly as far back as 1650.

If the name came from the synonymous insect, would it have been given by the Spaniards or the English? Mosquito is the Spanish diminutive name of a fly: but what we call a mosquito, the Spaniards in Central America call by another name, sanchujo . The Spaniards had very little connexion at any time with the Mosquito Indians; and as mosquitoes are not more abundant on their parts of the coast than on other parts, or in the interior, where the Spaniards settled, there would have been no reason for their giving the name on account of insects. Nor, indeed, would the English, who went to the coast from Jamaica, or other West India Islands, where mosquitoes are quite as abundant, have had any such reason either... Continue reading book >>

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