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Gypsy Folk Tales, by Francis Hindes Groome, [1899], at

'Greek Gypsies.'

In July 1886 ninety-nine Gypsies arrived by train at Liverpool. They were called the 'Greek Gypsies,' and had started from Corfu, but according to their passports came from all parts of Greece and European Turkey, as also from Servia, Bulgaria, Roumania, even Smyrna. Three hundred napoleons their

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journey had cost them thus far, and they meant to take shipping to New York. But America being closed to 'pauper' immigrants, no steamboat company would accept them, and they had perforce to encamp at Liverpool. Their encampment was visited by Mr. David MacRitchie and Mr. H. T. Crofton, the joint author with Dr. Bath Smart of the admirable Dialect of the English Gipsies (1875); the former wrote an excellent article about them in Chambers's Journal for September 1886. These Gypsies were not Caldarari, though some of them were coppersmiths (designated as 'chaudronniers'); others were builders, bricklayers, and agriculturists. They were typical Gypsies in physique, but not in apparel, 'absolutely free from the vice of drunkenness,' but most inveterate beggars. Their chief spokesman 'was quite an accomplished linguist, and could speak Greek, Russian, Roumanian, and two or three other dialects of south-eastern Europe. The curious thing was, that he never once included in his list his own mother tongue, the speech of the Gypsy race. Neither would he admit that he was a Ziganka, not for a long time, at anyrate; but subsequently both he and his comrades answered to the name of Roum; and the cigar was no longer bōn’ but lásho.' After stopping some time at Liverpool, these Gypsies crossed over to Hull, but neither there could they get passage to America; about a year later, so an English Gypsy informed me, a showman was exhibiting them, or some of them, through Yorkshire. Their subsequent fate is unknown to me; perhaps they are in process of absorption into English Gypsydom.

Next: Eastern Gypsies in Galloway.