II.--THE MAYOR OF ST GERMANS.
One of the first objects that attracts attention, on entering the village of St Germans is the large walnut-tree, at the foot of what is called Nut-Tree Hill. In the early part of the present century there was a very ancient dwelling a few yards south-east of this tree, which was supposed to have been the residence of some ecclesiastic of former times. Many a gay May-fair has been witnessed by the old tree; in the morning of the 28th of the month, splendid fat cattle, from some of the largest and best farms in the county, quietly chewed the cud around its trunk; in the afternoon the basket-swing dangled from its branches, filled with merry laughing boys and girls from every part of the parish. On the following day, the mock mayor, who had been chosen with many formalities, remarkable only for their rude and rough nature, starting from some "bush-house," where he had been supping too freely of the fair ale, was mounted on wain or cart, and drawn around it, to claim his pretended jurisdiction over the ancient borough, until his successor was chosen at the following fair. Leaving the old nut-tree, which is a real ornament to the town, we pass by a stream of water running into a large trough, in which many a country lad has been drenched for daring to enter the town on the 29th of May without the leaf or branch of oak in his hat.