The "Fox's Prophesy" poem is a truly remarkable piece of work. Written, you will note, over 140 years ago, it repeatedly "predicts" occurrences that have subsequently transpired, even down to the modern farming practices of removing hedgerows, and the current crisis in foxhunting in England. It leaves one feeling overawed at the foresight. (And a little annoyed that someone had to holloa at that point so we didn't find out more!).
The following verses, to which, the very apposite title of "The Fox's Prophecy" has been given, were found among the papers of the late Mr D.W.Nash; and were probably written by him about the winter of 1870-71. At that time the writer was, no doubt, much impressed by the brilliant military triumphs which Prussia and the Federated German States had during the preceding autumn against France, and possibly his mind was full of forebodings as to what the rise of a great new and ambitious power like Prussia (Germany) might mean to England. However that may be, they have such an extraordinary relation to the circumstances of the present time as fully warrant their publication.
It is well that as many readers as possible should realise what very few did then, that 1870 was the prelude to 1914. Mr Nash was one of the few who foresaw the trend of events and has visualised it for us in "The Fox's Prophecy".
The Cotswold Hunt was established in the year 1858. Previous to which it formed part of Lord Fitzhardinge's country. On the death of Mr Cregoe Colemore in 1871, the hounds were purchased, by Sir Francis Goldsmid, Sir Alexander Ramsey, Mr Agg-Gardner, Mr W.Watson, Mr F. Mowatt and Mr G. Fletcher. In the year 1885 they were secured on behalf of the hunt through the exertions of Mr A. le Blanc and vested in three,trustees: Lord Fitzhardinge, W. F. Hicks Beach Esq., and H. J. Elewes, Esq., for the benefit of the Cotswold country.
Tom Hill was in the saddle
One bright November morn,
The echoing glades of Guiting Wood
Were ringing with his horn.