KIPLING'S SUSSEX - online book

An illustrated descriptive guide, to the places mentioned in
the writings of Rudyard Kipling.

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SUSSEX DOWNS                    219
deep, if only half-realised, philosophy. However, that may be. But no one has drawn a better picture of him than Rudyard Kipling and Hobden. One of his rustic characters is a wonderful portrait. I have met many farm-hands of this stamp. I have mentioned elsewhere that the true crest of the Sussex Men is the " Squatting pig," with the motto, " I wunt be druv," and this would certainly be in accordance with the methods of Hobden. Kipling's character veils his independent and stubborn spirit under a show of submission and humility, putting his hand to his hat at every few words and saying, " Just as you do please, sir," but giving so many and so incontrovertible reasons why it should not be so, that all give in to him and he remains absolute. Just such a man as Hobden is old Colepepper, and he is no phantom. I made a call upon him a few weeks ago. He was trim­ming a hedge with those great hedging-gloves on his hands. Every time I look at those gloves, so dear to the heart of this Sussex son of the soil, I am reminded of some mediaeval fighting-man's gauntlets, and Colepepper, with his smock-frock and rude gloves, has little changed, perhaps, since mediaeval days,
Colepepper is " hedger and ditcher " in a certain corner of Sussex where one still hears so many
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