In the quiet of Orloue Street snatches of their conversation reach us occasionally, and the substance of it appears to be that the chaplain wishes to take his annual leave of absence during the first two weeks in June, and the Mayor will not consent until he has consulted his brethren of the gild of the Holy Trinity. If we turn to the left before reaching
the Castle Ditch we shall see the North Gate. It is the least used of all the gates, for it faces no well trod thoroughfare but looks out on Blackland towards the moors of Chilton. Near by is a garden called ‘ Rome ’ !
A narrow lane, skirting the moat of the Castle, brings us back from Orloue Street to the High Cross . We have brought with us from Glastonbury a letter which the Abbot has asked us to put into I lie hands of the Constable. Armed with this we pass over the Drawbridge of the Castle , and find no difficulty in obtaining the porter’s leave to enter. He is a comfortable looking man, on whom life’s cares evidently sit easily. He tells us that the Constable and almost all the Castle folk are away on the moors hawking. If we will wait an hour, we shall have our opportunity. It will suit us admirably to rest again, though there is here no such pleasant garden as that in which we spent the fore-noon. But a young clerk badly marked with small-pox takes us in hand, not unwilling to leave his quill for an hour, and shows us what is to be seen in the precincts. To tell truth the place has fallen somewhat into dilapidation, and hardly does credit to its royal owner. But probably it is, on the other hand, of little service to her. Our guide, who is inclined to be garrulous, takes us to the armoury, the chapel, the kitchen, the buttery, and even the cellars. Well, we have seen better appointed strongholds. But there is a spot which he points out to us as we cross the great courtyard which has its tragic story. Only a few years ago the Constable of that time was there beheaded for treason. Humphrey Stafford, Master Clerk tells us, during the troubled days of the