[from Proc IoMNH&ASoc vol2 #4 1926]
Some Time Vice-Principal of King William's College, Isle of Man.
Rev. E. H. STENNING, M.A.
12th February, 1920.
The Rev. J. G.
Cumming was a school master who found himself with a large amount
of spare time on his hands; and this was lucky for this Society, for
he utilised that time by making his mark upon the records of the
Society as no other man of his or probably any other time has
succeeded in doing. With a versatility little short of stupendous, he
set about the investigation of geological curiosities and formations,
ancient buildings, pre-historic remains, runic crosses, early
records, early manuscripts, church plate, and, in fact, all the
thousand interests that teem in this astonishing little Island
And, what is more important, his views on all these multitudinous topics are worth having, nay more, often they remain standard and classic to this day, and not all the hammering of the modern iconoclast can shake them to the ground. The work of Cumming is such as we all should be proud of, work that certainly any school master should be delighted to turnout, and such as spreads its lustre over the famous institution which he had so large a share in directing.
Other voices far more competent than mine can deal with his antiquarian work. My wish this afternoon is to put before you some slight appreciation of his geological work, for that is the work by which he is best known to the world in general, as well as to touch very slightly on his other literary work.
For this purpose I think we ought to take a glance at his life, for with Geology (I should say, Modern Geology) being, as it is, such a very new born child, it is essential to see how he fits in with the giants who brought the science from the stage of superstition and Mosaic authority to the condition in which we now know it, of minute and accurate observation, and inference from the observed facts. No science has suffered so greatly as Geology from the tendency to speculation beyond the sober limits of experience. Its disciples have too often been mere theorists. And so, even when it was fairly launched as an exact science, it often was in danger of shipwreck on account of the mere theorists. It has grown up completely during the past hundred years. We have but to cast our minds back to ~1850 to understand what this means. Geology then was a hobby for the clergy, who sought to find in it a record of the animals destroyed by the Flood ! Men of no scientific training sought to explain involved theories of physical geography in terms more garbled and horrific and fanciful than we can imagine. Nothing depended on observation, or laboratory, or field work. All was the most ridiculous speculation and fantasy. Geology then was as Chemistry was in the days of the Alchemists. If we omit~the names of Liebnitz and Guettard, whose work was fragmentary and specialistic, De Saussure was the first geologist who worked on lines even approaching scientific accuracy. His first volume appeared in 1779. But, like the chemical work of his contemporary, Lavoisier, de Saussure's work was practically lost in the French Revolution, and only re-discovered at a date when other devoted hands had re-worked, independently, the same ground. His work was certainly never available for the early British founders of the science, at least, until early in the 19th century. The earliest British Geologist, whose name is honoured world-wide, is James Hutton, 1726 to 1797. But even Hutton only began to see the differences between igneous and aqueous rocks, and his greatest contribution to Geology was his paper, read before the Royal Society of Edinburgh, entitled the ' Theory of the Earth: An Investigation into the Law observable in the Composition, Dissolution, and Restoration of the Land upon the Globe. 1785.' His whole magnum opus was published in 1795. Yet even Hutton was not able to build a very strong foundation, though to him belongs the eternal credit of enunciating that ' the present is the key to the past,' that the history of our globe must be explained by what we see happening around us. It was to Hutton, in particular, that Cumming owed his advanced views. Yet these views he had to be very careful of acknowledging, owing to the tremendous assault made by the Church of that time upon the new cosmogonists. Nor is that antipathy of the Church yet dead. No science save Biology has ever so confounded the theologists; and even to this very day, the parson Geologist has to be very, very careful, lest his views should upset the prevailing balance of clerical opinion, based on ancient religions, folk-lore, and mediaeval theology. Another name that has left its mark on Cumming's work must be noted, viz., that of William Smith. This old giant is a model of what car. be done by one man. Alone and unaided, he set about marking on the map of England and Southern Scotland the incidence of the different strata with an accuracy so marvellous that to this day it is the wonder of British geology, and a by-word with the Continental geologists. His work, justly valued by the Geological Society, and, indeed, largely the wet-nurse of the Society must have been constantly before Cumming when he became a member of the Society. One can trace its influence in his Geological papers, and particularly in his account of the Isle of Man. Smith died in 1839. The founder of modern Geology, Charles Lyell, was born in 1797, and Charles Darwin, the Father of Modern Science, in 1809. Have you ever noticed the astounding fame of the Scottish geologists ? Their names strike one in a most remarkable way:- Hutton, Black, Hall, Playfair, Lyell, Geikie, Cumming, Kennedy, the Forbes's. There seems to be some connexion between the land of the Geological Paradise and the men who are born there, or who are proud to acknowledge Scottish extraction. Cumming was born on February 12th,1812, so that to-day is the anniversary of his birth. His father, Joseph Cumming, was of the Scottish Cummings of Altyre His grandfather had left Scotland after Culloden and settled down in East Anglia. But Cumming's father, on his marriage, seems to have settled down at Matlock. Here, in 1812, J. G was born. He was thus three years only the junior of Darwin, and he may, for all practical purposes, be treated as contemporary, especially when we consider that Darwin's work was all published a little late in life, ' The Origin of Species,' e.g., when he was 50, and the ' Descent of Man' 21 years later. Young Cumming seems to have been a capable boy, for at the age of 12 he won a Scholarship, at Oakham School. Of his early days there is little record. he seems, from the testimony of friends, to have been of a very studious frame of mind. One of them, quoted by Huxley, who wrote his obituary notice for the Geological Society, writes of him:_' He was, at school, the very opposite of a pickle. I never remember to have seen such another brave, earnest boy, cheerful indeed, and eminently good natured. I never remember to have seen him with cricket bat or fishing rod. He was engrossed in the wonders of Derbyshire. He presented me with many fossils from his native hills. He was eminently fond of wrestling. Frequently we walked to a quiet field half a mile from the town, and there we tugged at each other's collars, on pretty equal terms. He was a great walker, and an incurable collector of fossils.' We can draw` no conclusion as to the first person who inspired his love of Geology. But Derbyshire breeds geologists, as Scotland breeds them, and there is hardly a man of woman who really has a soul who can go to-day through the cuttings of the Midland Railway, Manchester to Derby line, who does not find himself or herself irresistibly bound to inquire, as young Cumming must have done, wandering over the same area,' How did these rocks come about ? Can any force of to-day compare with one which has brought about this glorious scenery.' No other county in England affords such a striking similarity to the south portion of the Isle of Man. The house in which he lived (as, in later years, King William's College)stands on the Carboniferous Limestone. Within a few minutes of his door, there began a huge dyke of igneous rock, intrusive dolerite sills, stretching away to Winster and beyond on the west and to Wirksworth on the south, exactly analogous, though more immense than, the same dykes that, in later life, he found pushed up between the carboniferous bands, at Skillicore, on I.angness, at Scarlett and Poyll-vaish. And these you will find treated with great clearness in his account of the Isle of Man. On his first walk from King William's College, he must have hailed the bedded limestone, and the trap and greenstone dykes, as old and familiar friends. Then, again, further south, he had the Bunter beds of the Trias, which (though they are by no means identical) may be considered as analogous to the Red Sandstone of Peel. Then there were those Matlock caves, so dear to the heart of the youthful geologist, with their Pleistocene and Pliocene fossil remains. And already, at Buxton, had begun the uncovering of the Mastodon and Machaerodus described at a later date by Boyd Dawkins. The boy who had a love for Geology could not have had a happier home. But, sad to say, Geology was not! at Cambridge, treated as a separate and suitable subject for a Tripos.
So when young Cumming, in 1831, won a leaving Scholarship from Oakham to Emmanuel College, Cambridge, two avenues only in the intellectual world were open to him, Classics and Mathematics, and the youngster, evidently never a great classic, chose the subject more in keeping with his bent, and sat in the year 1834 for the Mathematical Tripos. He was returned. a Senior Optime, as the Second Class is called at that Tripos. His ordination followed immediately, and in 1835 we find him at North Runcton, in Norfolk, a curate to his uncle, James Cumming, Professor of Chemistry in the University of Cambridge. It was from this most worthy old man, we must assume, that he absorbed his scientific bent and accuracy. Under his uncle he met many friends whom in Cambridge he had known; men of fame; yet to none did he owe so much as to old Adam Sedgwick, the famous professor of Geology, who had received the chair in,1818. Sedgwick was the first and the greatest of Systemitists, and his knowledge of the Palaeozoic Fossils was deep and lasting. And the inspiration and learning of this greatest of all geological teachers was of inestimable value to Cumming in his work on this Island. Nor was the advantage entirely one-sided. For in his monumental work on the British Palaeozoic Fossils, Sedgwick has incorporated several species which he can only have known of through Cumming. The Woodward Museum, to this day, contains several species of Carboniferous fossils, found at Poyllvaish, or Derbyhaven, or Langness, or Skillicore. Two, in particular, are of interest: Ammonite Henslowii and Nautilus complarlatus. Thus have the Castletown fossils become known to the world. To the uncle, too, our subject must have owed much of his progressive point of view. Professor Cumming was a prominent member of the young Cambridge Philosophical Society, thus coming into contact with the greatest thinkers of his age. He, too, was a physicist of no mean fame, and a man famous as the first English person to experiment with the telegraph after the manner of Oersted, on the Continent. He was, too, the leader of thought with regard to Electro-Magnetics, and the discoverer of modern Thermo-Electricity. Liberal, well read, a polished conversationalist, a gently ironical cynic, he cannot have failed to have been a source of strength and inspiration to his curate. Through this means, too, he came across the rising school of Cambridge chemists, and through them, he was able to obtain analyses of the Manx rocks, particularly of his beloved limestone, and examples you may find in his book and papers, worked out by Dr. Kemp, in particular.
In 1838, Cumming, feeling the desire of a teacher, forsook pure clerical work, and was appointed Classical Master of the West Riding Proprietary School. Once more he was within easy reach of the Limestone he loved. The long strip of Magnesian limestone that forms the boundary of West Riding is the special feature of the Richmond district, while, barely a mile away, rise the Yoredale series, identical in chemical composition and fossils with the Carboniferous Limestone of this Island, and differing only in the presence of vast masses of shales and grit overlays. It was here, too, apparently, that he acquired a love of things antiquarian which never deserted him, and which proved of such inestimable value both to him, to this Island, and this Society in particular. His life in Yorkshire appears to have been somewhat colourless. But, at some time about now, he appears to have gone North for a holiday, and to have worked at the Geology of the Moray Firth, as he compiled an article for the Journal of the Geological Society, published at a subsequent date, on the Tertiary formations of this area.
At this time, too, he married Miss Agnes Peckham, and then, probably finding the school he was in somewhat cramping and lacking in prospect, he applied for and was appointed to the Vice-Principalship of King William's College. This was in 1841, nearly eighty years ago. The College was then run on the thoroughly bad system of a dual school, the pupils being either school-boys in the ordinary sense or else older theological students, comprising the bulk of what to-day, I imagine is the Bishop Wilson Theological College. Such a system could not help being objectionable from the point of view of Seniors and Juniors. However, that is neither here nor there. Cumming's work was twofold. On the one hand, he was a teacher of mathematics to the smaller fry, and also a theological and classical tutor to the elders. He seems to have left singularly little mark upon the College. His interests were not in youth or adolescence, but were centred in things antiquarian and geological. Yet he was no failure as a schoolmaster. He seems to have been a very lovable, charming man. Judging from his writings and the few sermons that remain with us, he was a somewhat advanced Churchman, and I am not sure that, in this narrower age, he would not have been styled a priest and ritualist. His sermons and theological writings are very sincere, and very straightforward, and his style pleasant, although, viewed from to-day's point of view, somewhat dull. But once get him to work on some antiquarian problem, on Rushen Abbey or Rushen Castle, or the trap dykes of Castletown, or the carboniferous fossils, or the Agneash grit, and his soul shines out, and his style becomes natural and easy and his argument clear and lucid and readable, and he becomes the inspired teacher, the man who finds_
" Books in the rulllling brooks,
Sermons in stones,
And good in everything."
Here in the Island was the place he loved. Every stone in the sheading of Rushen he knew like a book. Every inch of ground from Douglas Head to the Calf he knew by heart. His guide to the Isle of Man is a real guide. It ought to be re-published for the benefit of everybody. If there is anybody here who has not read it, I can only advise them to borrow a copy_(though I cannot imagine anybody being such a fool as to lend a copy, knowing the morals that people have about borrowed books)_ and to go over the ground with Cumming, stand where he stood, see the things that he pointed out, and then go home with a larger and richer idea of this_(his or her) - -Island home.
But I must get on with his life, as I wish to devote sometime specially to his geological and other scientific work. In 846 he was elected a member of the Geological Society. The journals of the Society from 1846 to 1865 are plentifully besprinkled with his articles and notes. Fifteen years he lived here, and then he was appointed Head Master of the Cathedral School of Lichfield, 1856. His interest was maintained in the Island. He edited from Lichfield the Manx Society's publications, which he had begun while here, and even to the very end of his life he was the recognised editor of the proceedings of the Manx Society.
He spent a few years only at Lichfield, and then he was appointed
to the Professorship at Queen's College, Birmingham(now the
University), of the Chair of Classical Studies and Geology, a
wonderful combination. For eleven years he stayed at Birmingham, and
then he asked for parochial work and was appointed to the vicarage of
Mellis, in Suffolk. But he was no man to settle down to a quiet
country living, and so, loathing the inaction and waste of time that
is the lot of the country parson in the average parish, he effected
an exchange of benefices with the vicar of S. James, Bethnal Green,
in the East end of London, a parish for centuries famous as the
centre of squalid misery. Here he threw himself heart and soul into
the work, and, with zeal and devotion, fought the battles of his
Master, as though he wished to make up for the quiet days in Ellan
Vannin. Bethnal Green materially abridged his life. Emphatically a
hard worker, both as a clergyman and a man of science, he undertook
more than his strength would allow, and in 1868, quite suddenly, he
died, leaving a widow and six children. His death was the cause of
general sorrow in his parish, in this Island, and in the company of
all geologists. The President of the Geological Society in that same
year was the great Huxley, and Cumming's obituary notice from that
master hand is to be found in the Proceedings, Vol. xxx., p. 37.
His works are many in number and of the greatest importance, and, luckily, most of them are preserved in the Free Library here. But I cannot go into them all to-day. He summarizes them all in his ' Isle of Man,' and an appreciation and criticism of his work, now eighty years old, can safely Bede to-day. But, first of all, mention must be made of his collection of carboniferous fossils. They are, I am proud to say, safely enshrined in the Library of King William's College, practically intact, after many adventures. They were left named and arranged to the College by Cumming. But a Principal arose whose classical tidiness revolted at these dirty stones among the musty old classics, and the collection was thrown into the lumber room of a dark cupboard. Not many years ago it was re-discovered, and the then Principal realising that they were of value, conceived the happy idea of washing them, and putting them in a cupboard for show. This delightful plan was adopted, and every label was, of course, washed off. For many years they remained so, and although visited by members of the Geological Survey, and though portions of special interest were carried to the Jony Street Museum, yet no attempt was made to have them accessible or useful to the geologist.
The fact has worried me for many years, for it seems such a waste of labour and good material to have these rare and beautiful fossils simply locked away in a cupboard and not available for examination. Yet I did not see how it could be helped. A master of to-day has to be a father, a chaplain, a master, a soldier, a diocesan worker, a hotel keeper, a never failing purveyor of good advice, and a sportsman, all thrown into one mere man, for a week of seven 24 hour days. So the classification of the fossils was shelved and my conscience smote me. But the war solved many difficulties, and last term there came to stay at Castletown, Captain R. W. Palmer, of the Indian Geological Survey, invalided. He had seen in Lamplugh book, that we had the collection, and he asked to see it. Unblushingly, I asked him to have a shot at classifying it for me. This he did most admirably. I have here with me this afternoon the catalogue that he made, and in the summer I propose to ask you to come over and see for yourselves the excellent work that Captain Palmer has done. Not only has the collection been classified, but notes and drawings of an explanatory nature have been made for the benefit of the amateur. I am glad thus publicly to say how grateful I personally, am, and I think you will all join your gratitude with mine to Captain Palmer for this work of love, which has been so excellently done. In the end of his ' Isle of Man,' Cumming has left a list of his named fossils. So rapidly has geology advanced, that in many cases his names are inaccurate and indeed, untraceable, as far as modern names go, and, apparently, many of the fossils are different from the list he gives But the collection is a marvellous one, consisting as it does of above 300 specimens, of which o40 have been catalogued. Many are rare, and all are of the greatest interest, even the most common. They reveal the work of an enthusiast, and are the most complete record of the Manx carboniferous limestone in existence. They can but be a source of emulation for any modern geologist. A few are plants. There is a good specimen of Adiantum, a forefather of the modern Maidenhair fern. There are some good Calamites, a Sphenophvllum, and a LeDidostrobus, all of which are closely related to the surviving Genus Fquisetum, or Horsetail, so familiar a figure in the bog flora of the curraghs to-day.
The classification adopted by Cumming appears to the modern mind somewhat difficult, and I must confess to some nervousness in tackling it.
He classes the two first classes, of Protozoa and Coelontera together, evidently as ZoLphyta; Vermes, with Echinodermata, are allowed to have class precedence. The Brachiopods are, apparently, properly isolated and classified. But his Conchifera are difficult to make out. He makes a special class of Heteropods, species now included for the most part amongst the Gasteropods. Many of his Cephalopods are now included amongst the Gasteropods, e.g., Cereis. Soit may easily be seen, that the re-classification of the collection has been no easy task, and probably it is even now not correct though at least it is most usefully arranged and helpful But you must come and judge for yourselves. The collection is little short of a monument, when one. thinks of the circumstances of its accomplishment. Biology as yet scarcely existed as a science. Palaeontology was in a pitiful state of chaos. On the other hand, the catastrophists, who included all the powerful phalanx of the clergy, insisted that the first chapters of Genesis were a scientific treatise. Any attempt to coordinate those facts with the modern views was classified as blasphemy and atheism. Fossils were curious accidents in rock formation, and to associate them with living forms was ridiculous. As a minister, Cummmg must have felt himself torn in two On the one hand stood Darwin, Lyell, Huxley. Hutton, and the deductions of his own common sense, and systematic scientific observation. On the other hand the vast weight of episcopal opinion, backed by the unintelligent and conservative tenets of dogmatic theology. But he steered a wise line. Without showing himself to be heretically inclined, he laboriously classified his facts and enumerated his species. And rather than force his conclusions down the throats of his contemporaries, he quietly left them for time, that great critic, to smooth out and make normal. So, without knowing it, this Island nurtured a man as great as Darwin, as accurate as Huxley, and yet, except as a clever and painstaking observer, his name is almost forgotten. The facts that he noted and observed are equally as epoch making as ' The Origin of Species,' and had their author been more pugnacious he would have made a name as great as Darwin's. But time has verified his inductions, and now he is quoted as the standard observer of island geology in the Ordnance Survey series. What matter if the distinction between Gasteropods and Cephalopods is the worst thing we can find about him. Surely we are not able to carry criticism very far. And all that remains to us, is the fact that we cannot but admire the steady and accurate marshalling of facts as given by one whose only desire was the advancement of knowledge, and one who loved Nature so deeply and Nature's God so well, that he failed to see any blasphemy or heresy in any revelation of the one by the other. So, as a Palaentologist, time has justified him, and his collection is to-day a monumental work, greater than he himself could have conceived.
But Cumming's adventures into the field of stratigraphical geology were perhaps less fortunate. The fault was by no means his. He was well in advance of his time, but his was an age when theory was still too far divorced from field work, and when, moreover, there were not enough facts discovered from which to form conclusions. Do not misunderstand me. I should be the last to cry down theorising, for on it every science depends. But the Victorian era was famous for the absurdity of many of its theorists, and although often enough Cumming's theories have proved to have a great deal of truth in them, that truth is often founded on false premises, or on no premises at all. However, such was not always the case, and a striking example of the successful work was in his Geology of the Central Valley of the Isle of Man, published in the journal. of the Geological Society, May, 1847, in which he describes the boulder drift and drift gravel beds, and the result of glacial and iceberg deposition. He was less fortunate in his idea of granite bubbles, in dealing with the formation of Granite Mountain although following the lead of the German, Von Buch. And this somewhat fantastic explanation, which gives too little scope for weathering, leads him into the common error of making his geological sections fit his theory, rather than the facts. Examination of the section in the map at the end of his book, and the almost identical section on the survey map, will show the point I mean. Carried away by Buch's ideas of the bubble, he strains his imagination to find in the Foxdale hills a similarity to the Brocken. And even in his own happy hunting ground of Langness, he appears to have been led into error on purely speculative grounds, as witness in his sketch of the dip of the basement sandstone and conglomerate of Langness in section. He seems to wish to show the denudation effect somewhat after the manner of the Kent and Sussex Weald, and in doing so he pushed his strata through ~80 degrees. But it is less than gracious to criticise the life work of a man who was above all things a genuine seeker after truth. Had other sciences been as well served, as was geology by Cumming, they would have advanced more rapidly. Geology is a science in which indoor experiment is almost impossible and in which only minute observation, accompanied by the nicest and most scrupulous deductions, is of the least value. Its rise and advancement (and they are both well on a par with the best known sciences of the day) are due to men such as Cumming. who have been content to do minute pieces of the earth, and study them accurately and zealously and minutely. And such another ideal piece of the earth as the Isle of Man is not easy to find. It offers a single and complete cosmogony, puzzling at times, it is true, but always full of interest. It is an epitome of Great Britain, and Great Britain of Europe. And it is so complete, as far as its record goes. I had occasion to ask the And, thanks to this man, and the Forbes's, it is practically complete, as far as its record goes. I had occasion to ask the Secretary of the Geological Society about certain points in this paper. He wrote to me: ' Cumming is remembered as a hard, sound, and scientific worker, a seeker after truth, and a man of whom the Isle of Man should be proud, from a geological point of view, as a worthy pioneer.' Let that then remain as his commendation.
We have looked at the work of a hard worker, an accurate observer, and a patient student. I have not done justice to his memory. But I am proud to think that I have the honour to follow in his footsteps, if not as an antiquarian, then as a master, at King William's College.
Bibliography compiled by W. CUBBON.
Account of the Geology of the Isle of Man. Published in the
Proceedings of the Geological Society of London. August, 1846.
Geology of the Calf of Man. A memoir published in the ' Quarterly Journal' of the 'Proceedings of the Geological Society of London, in May, 1847. By the Rev. J. G. Cumming, Vice-Principal of King William's College, Castletown.
The Isle of Man. Its History, Physical, Ecclesiastical, Civil, and Legendary. London: John van Voorst, Paternoster Row.MDCCCXLVIII. Post Octavo. Dedication (to Dr Short), Preface,etc., pp. xxxvi. History pp 376. Numerous Views, Geological Maps and Sections.
Great Industrial Exhibition of 1861. Two letters showing some of
the productions of the Isle of Man in connection with the Exhibition.
Douglas: Printed for the Local Committee, by P. Curphey, Sun Office,
North Quay. 1850. Small octavo. pp. 8.
These letters enumerate the Natural and Industrial Products of theIsland, and strongly urge upon the notice of the inhabitants the necessity of sending specimens of the same to the Great Exhibition,for which a Local Committee was formed.
The Story of Rushen Castle and Rushen Abbey, in the Isle of Man. By the Rer. J. G. Cumming, M.A., F.G.S., Head Master of the Grammar School of king Edward VI., Lichfield. London: Bell and Daldy, Fleet Street. 1857. Octavo. Dedication and Introductory Notice, pp. viii,; Work, pp. 64; Appendix, pp. 24; 8 plates.
The Runic and Other
Monumental Remains of the Isle of Man. London: Bell and Daldy,
Fleet Street; Lomax, Lichfield; Kerruish &Kneale, Douglas.
Dedication to Horace Powys, D.D., Bishop of Sodor and Man. Dated '1st June, 1867.' Prefatory Note, pp. v. to viii. Runic Remains,44 pp. List of Subscribers, 4 pp. Plates 15.
Printed for the Manx Society, with Introductory Notice and Copious
Notes, the Account of the Isle of Man, by William Sacheverell, Esq.,
late Governor of Man.
This is the First Volume of the Publications of the Manx Society, reprinted from the edition of 1702.
The Isle of Man. A Guide to the Isle of Man. with the means of access thereto, and an introduction to its scenery. Containing also a general synopsis of its Constitution; Climate; Language; Population; Manners and Customs, Topography; Civil and Ecclesiastical History, Agriculture; Fisheries; Mines; Minerals; Manufactures; Antiquities: Botany; Geology and Zoology. London: Edward Stanford,, 6, Charing Cross. 1861. Post octavo.
The Great Stanley, or James VIIth Earl of Derby, and his Noble
Countess, Charlotte de la Tremouille, in their Land of Man.
Narrative of the XVIIth Century. Interspersed with Notices of Manx Manners, Customs, Law's, Legends, and Fairy Tales. Copiously illustrated with Manx Scenery and Antiquities. London: William Mackintost, 24, Paternoster Row, E.C. 1867. Foolscap octavo.
or a Collection of Memoirs on the Antiquities of the Isle of Man.
Edited for the Manx Society by the Rev. J. G. Cumming, AI.A., F.G.S.
London: Printed for the Manx Society.1868. Octavo. pp. 140. Plates
The Society's Fifteenth Volume. It consists wholly of the Memoirs read at the Douglas Meeting of the Cambrian Archeaological Association in 1865, and which were published in their journal in 1866-7, with some new readings of Runic inscriptions by Mr. Cumming, and a fuller account of the Ancient Churches of Man, by Dr. Oliver.
Mr. Cumming died in London on the 21st September, 1868.