The journey from Chester to London

THE JOURNEY FROM CHESTER TO LONDON.

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EAST GATE CHESTER

LONDON Printed for B. WHITE, Fleet Street. MDCCLXXXII.

ADVERTISEMENT.

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THE ground which is deſcribed in the following Sheets, has been for ſome centuries paſſed over by the incurious Traveller; and has had the hard fortune of being conſtantly execrated for its dulneſs. To retort the charge, and clear it from the calumny, is my preſent buſineſs. To ſhew that the road itſelf, or its vicinity, is replete with either antient hiſtoric facts, or with matter worthy of preſent attention; is an affair of no great difficulty. Poſſibly my readers may ſubſcribe to the opinion, that the tract is not abſolutely devoid of entertainment, and that the blame reſts on themſelves, not the country.

WHATSOEVER entertainment they may meet with, let them join with me in thanks to the following contributors. Firſtly and chiefly, to the Reveread Mr. COLE [Page ii] of Milton, near Cambridge; after him, to the Reverend Doctor Edwards, of Nuneaton, near Coventry; to Mr. Greene, Surgeon, in Lichfield; and to the Reverend Archdeacon Coxe, of Flitton, Bedfordſhire. To theſe Gentlemen I owe great obligations for their aſſiſtance.

PUBLIC! ſmile on what is right: candidly convey correction of what is wrong.

THOMAS PENNANT.

PLATES.

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  • FRONTISPIECE, Eaſtgate in Cheſter
  • I. Beeſton Caſtle Page 11
  • II. Tomb in Acton Church Page 22
  • III. Nantwich Church Page 32
  • IV. Shugborough Page 67
  • V. Temple of the Winds at Shugborough Page 68
  • VI. Antiquities at Stafford and Lichfield Page 110
  • VII. Sponne Gate, Coventry Page 146
  • VIII. Greyfriars Gate and Steeple, Coventry Page 160
  • IX. The Challenge between, the Duke of Hereford and Thomas Mowbray Duke of Norfolk, taken from the beautiful MS. of Froiſſart, in the Harleian Library, marked 4380 Page 167
  • X. Gorhambury Page 224
  • XI. Counteſs of Suffolk Page 228
  • XII. The firſt Lord Baltimore Page 238
  • XIII. Margaret Counteſs of Cumberland Page 246
  • XIV. View into the South Tranſept of St. Alban's Church 263
  • XV. View of part of the Body and Ailes Page 263
  • XVI. Abbot Ramridge's Tomb Page 264
  • XVII. Caſtle Aſhby Page 310
  • [Page iv] XVIII. John Talbot Earl of Shrewſbury Page 312
  • XIX. His Counteſs Page 312
  • XX. Gothurſt Page 325
  • XXI. Buſt of Lady Venetia Digby Page 337
  • XXII. Houghton Park Page 381

*⁎* A few Copies are printed on Large Paper, and may be had, finely illuminated on the Margin with Views, Coats of Arms, &c. &c. by applying to MOSES GRIFFITH, Painter, in Whiteford Pariſh Flintſhire.

ERRATA.

  • Page 17, Line 24, for Bas Bentagne read Bas Bretagne
  • 25, 11, for health-keepers read heath-keepers
  • 26, 17, for Droitwich read Durtwich
  • 70, 2, after my countryman, add by deſcent
  • 110, 6, for 4 XV read LXV
  • 353, 5, for his read her
  • 356, 21, for Earl of Ruſſel read Earl of Bedford
  • 370, laſt, for Chelſea read Oxford
  • 381, 7, for bears read palms
  • 383, 8, place a comma after age, and dele the full ſtop after before.

1.

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1.1. THE JOURNEY TO LONDON.

IN MARCH 1780, I began my annual journey to London. At Cheſter ſome improvements had taken place ſince my laſt account of the city. A very commodious building has been erected in the Yatchfield, near the Watergate ſtreet, for the ſale of the Iriſh linen at the two fairs. It ſurrounds a large ſquare area; on each ſide of which are piazzas, with numbers of ſhops well adapted for the purpoſe.

IN digging the foundation for certain houſes near the ſtreet, were diſcovered ſome Roman buildings, and a large Hypocauſt with its ſeveral conveniences; and ſome other antiquities, particularly a beautiful altar *, dedicated Fortunae Reduci et Aeſculapio. Much of its inſcription is defaced; but the rudder, cornucopia, rod, ſerpent, and various ſacrificial inſtruments, are in good preſervation.

[Page 2] ON leaving the city, I paſſed under the fine arch of the Eaſt Gate: a work owing to the munificence of Lord Groſvenor.

Boughton, [Note: BOUGHTON.] a ſuburb in the pariſh of St. Oſwald, a little diſjoined from this part of the city, had before the diſſolution an hoſpital * for poor lepers, as early as the beginning of Edward II. From an eminence, the retreat of the unfortunate brave, is a view of very uncommon beauty; of two fine reaches of the Dee, bounded on one part by meadows and hanging woods; on the other terminated by part of the city, the antient bridge, and over it a diſtant view of the Cambrian hills.

ADJOINING to that part of Boughton which is within the liberties of the city, is the townſhip of Boughton, in the county of Cheſter; the inhabitants of which appear at the court of the dean and chapter of Cheſter, and pay there a chief rent: but uſually clame and diſpoſe of the waſtes.

NEAR the two miles ſtone I croſſed the canal to Chriſtleton, a pretty village, ſeated, as uſual with thoſe of Cheſhire, on the freeſtone rock. Criſtetone, as it is called in the Doomſday book, was held before the Conqueſt by Earl Edwin. At that event, probably, it had a chapel, or very ſoon after. This manor had been beſtowed by Hugh Lupus on Robert Fitz Hugh, one of his followers, who gave the chapel of Criſtentune, with the land belonging to it, and the land of a certain peaſant, with the peaſant himſelf, to the abbey of Cheſter . His great great grand-daughter Iſabel, wife of Sir Philip Burnet, joined with her huſband in ſuing the abbey for this, and ſome other contiguous manors. It is probable, that the monks might have taken an advantage of a fit of [Page 3] remorſe for ſome crime, or the weakneſs of an illneſs, to obtain this gift from her anceſtor. They thought fit to compromiſe the matter with her; and on payment of two hundred pounds received, in 1280, the ninth of Edward I. a confirmation of the grant: and at the ſame time full liberty was given to the abbot to make a reſervoir of water, and to convey it to the abbey.

IN the year 1282, [Note: FREE WARREN.] William de Birmingham had free warren given him of all his demeſne lands in this village; but it is apprehended he was only an inferior lord to the paramount privileges of the abbey. In the Saxon times, every man was allowed to kill game on his own eſtate, but on the Conqueſt, the king veſted the property of all the game in himſelf, ſo that no one could ſport, even on his own land, under moſt cruel penalties, without permiſſion from the king, by grant of a chaſe or free warren. By this, the grantee had an excluſive power of killing game on his own eſtate, but it was on condition that he prevented every one elſe; ſo that, as our learned commentator * obſerves, this ſeeming favor was intended for the preſervation of the beaſts and fowls of warren; which were roes, hares, and rabbits, partridge, rails, and quails, woodcocks and pheaſants, mallards and herons, for the ſport of our ſavage monarchs. This liberty, which they allowed to a few individuals, being deſigned merely to prevent a general deſtruction.

Chriſtleton paſſed from the Birminghams, in Richard II.'s time; to Sir Hugh Brower: Sir Hugh loſt it by his attachment to the houſe of York; and Henry the IVth, in the fourth year of his reign, beſtowed it on John Manwaring, of Over Peover, an attendant on his [Page 4] ſon, afterwards Henry V *. Manwaring having no lawful iſſue, beſtowed this place on Sir Thomas le Groſvenor, lord of Hulme; but it paſſed immediately from him to John de Macclesfield, in the 10th of Henry V. One of his deſcendants alienated it, in 1442, or the 21ſt of Henry VI. to Humphrey (afterward Duke) of Buckingham. Henry Lord Stafford, ſon to Edward Duke of Buckingham, ſold it to Sir William Sneyde, of Keel; and Sir Ralph Sneyde, to Sir John Harpur, of Swerſton, in Derbyſhire; one of whoſe deſcendants ſold it to Thomas Brock, Eſquire, the preſent lord of the manor. The living is a rectory, in the diſpoſal of Sir Roger Moſtyn: the church dedicated to St. James.

FROM hence I took the horſe-road acroſs Brownheath, by Hockenball, formerly the ſeat of a family of the ſame name. The riſing country to the left of this road appears to great advantage, oppoſing to the traveller a fair front, beautifully clumped with, ſelf-planted groves.

PASSED over a brook, and reached the ſmall town of Tarvin, which ſtill retains nearly its Britiſh name Terfŷn, or the Boundary, and is ſo to the foreſt of Delamere. In Doomſday book, it is ſtiled Terve: the biſhop at that time held it. It then contained ſix taxable hides of land. The biſhop kept on it ſix cowmen, three radmen, ſeven villeyns, ſeven boors, and ſix ploughlands. The firſt were to keep his cattle; the ſecond to attend his perſon in his travels, or to go whereſoever he pleaſed to ſend them; the third, by their tenure, to cultivate his lands; and the fourth, to ſupply his table with poultry, eggs, and other ſmall matters. The ploughland, or caruca, was as much as one plough could [Page 5] work in the year. This ſhews the eſtabliſhment of a manor in thoſe early times; which I mention now to prevent repetition.

IN Henry VI.'s time, the village and manor were eſtimated at £23 a year, and were held by Reginald, biſhop of Lichfield, in the ſame manner as they were held by his predeceſſors, under the Prince of Wales, as earl of Cheſter. They continued poſſeſſed by them till the reign of Queen Elizabeth, when they were alienated to Sir John Savage, who procured for the town the privilege of a market. The church is a rectory, and ſtill continues part of the ſee of Lichfield; being a prebendary, originally founded about the year 1226, by Alexander de Stavenby, biſhop of that dioceſe. It is valued at £26. 13s. 4d. the higheſt endowment of any prebend in that cathedral. It is called the prebend of Tarvin, which preſents to the living.

THE ſame prelate alſo beſtowed this church on the vice-prebendal church of Burton, in Wiral *; and formed out of its revenues an hoſpital for ſhipwrecked perſons. This hoſpital was probably at Burton, Tarvin being too remote from the ſea for ſo humane a deſign.

AGAINST the church-wall is a monument, in memory of Mr. John Thomaſine, thirty-ſix years maſter of the grammar-ſchool. The epitaph deſervedly celebrates the performances of this exquiſite penman, as ‘highly excelling in all the varieties of writing, and wonderfully ſo in the Greek characters. Specimens of his ingenuity are treaſured up, not only in the cabinets of the curious, but in public libraries throughout the kingdom. He had the honour to tranſcribe, for her Majeſty Queen Anne, [Page 6] the Icon Baſilike of her royal grandfather. Invaluable copies alſo of Pindar, Anacreon, Theocritus, Epictetus, Hippocrates's Aphoriſms, and that finiſhed piece the Shield of Achilles, as deſcribed by Homer, are among the productions of his celebrated pen.’

‘As his incomparable performances acquired him the eſteem and patronage of the great and learned; ſo his affability and humanity gained him the good-will of all his acquaintance; and the deceaſe of ſo much private worth is regretted as a public loſs.’

FROM Tarvin I travel on the great road, and at about two miles diſtance, leave on the right Stapleford, which retains the name it had at the Conqueſt, when it was held by Radulpus Venator from Hugh Lupus. After a long interval, it fell to the Breretons. In 1378, or the ſecond of Richard II. it was held by Sir William Brereton of the king, as earl of Cheſter. From that family it paſſed to the Bruyns, and was purchaſed by the late Randle Wilbraham, Eſquire.

Two miles farther, on the left, ſtood Utkinton Hall: the manor, with Kingſley, and the baileywick of the foreſt of Delamere, was given by Randle Meſchines, earl of Cheſter, to Randle de Kingſley; whoſe great grand-daughter Joan, about the year 1233, conveyed it to the Dones. Richard Done was poſſeſſed of it in 1311, the ſixth of Edward II. He held it by a quarter part of a knight's fee, and the maſter foreſterſhip of Mere (Delamere) and Mottram, by himſelf, and a horſeman and eight footmen under him, to keep that foreſt, then valued at £10. 10s. 3 d.

UPON the failure of iſſue male of Sir John Done, in the beginning of the laſt century, the manor of Utkinton came to his [Page 7] daughters, and has been ſince held by them, or perſons claming under them. Mary, the ſecond daughter, married, in 1636, John, ſecond ſon of Sir Randle Crew, of Crew; and Elinor, the younger, to Ralph Arderne, Eſquire.

THE Dones of Flaxyard, in this neighbourhood, were another conſiderable family, at conſtant feud with the former, till the houſes were united by the nuptials of the heir of Flaxyard with the heireſs of Utkinton. But at this time, both thoſe antient ſeats are demoliſhed, or turned into farm-houſes.

FROM hence I ſoon reached Torporley, a ſmall town, ſeated on a gentle deſcent. It had once been a borough town, of which Richard Francis was mayor in the twentieth of Edward I. In the tenth of the ſame reign, Hugh de Tarpoley had licence to hold a market here every Tueſday, and a fair on the vigil, the feaſt-day, and the day after the exaltation of the Holy Croſs; but he alienated this privilege, with his property, to Reginald de Grey, chief juſtice of Cheſter.

IN the eighth of Richard II. this manor was divided into two moieties; one of which was held by John Done, the other by Reginald Grey, of the family of Lord Grey, of Ruthin.

THE manor and rectory of Torporley are now divided into ſix ſhares: four belong to the Arderns; one to the dean and chapter of Cheſter; and another to Philip Egerton, Eſquire, of Oulton.

THE living is a rectory in the gift of John Ardern, Eſquire. The church is dedicated to St. Helen, the Empreſs of Conſtantius, the daughter of Coel, a Britiſh prince, a popular ſaint among us, if we may judge from the number of churches under her protection. That in queſtion is of no great antiquity, in reſpect to the [Page 8] building; nor yet of beauty. Within is much waſte of good marble, in monumental vanity.

THE beſt, are two monuments in the chancel, ſeemingly copied from half-length portraits, included in carved borders of marble, in imitation of frames. The figures are included in them in mezzo-relievo: the one of Sir John Done, Knight, hereditary foreſter and keeper of the foreſt of Delamere, who died in 1629. His figure is pictureſque, in a laced jacket, and a horn in his hand, the badge of his office: which horn deſcended to the different owners of the eſtate, and is now in the poſſeſſion of John Ardern, Eſquire.

WHEN that Nimrod, James I. made a progreſs in 1617, he was entertained by this gentleman at Utkinton; ‘who ordered ſo wiſely and contentfully, ’ ſays King * ‘his Highneſs's ſports, that James conferred on him the honor of knighthood.’ He married Dorothy, daughter of Thomas Wilbraham, Eſquire, of Woodhey; who left behind her ſo admirable a character, that, to this day, when a Cheſhire man would expreſs ſome excellency in one of the fair ſex, he would ſay, ‘There is Lady Done for you.’

The other is of John Crew, Eſquire, ſecond ſon of Sir Randle Crew, of Crew, Knight, married to Mary, daughter of Sir John Done. His face is repreſented in profile, with long hair. He died 1670.

His lady, and her elder ſiſter Jane Done, an antient virgin, lie at full length in the Utkinton chapel, with long and excellent characters. One lies recumbent; the other reclined and ſtrait laced, [Page 9] which give little grace in ſtatuary. Jane died in 1662; Mrs. Crew in 1690, aged 86.

SIR John Crew, Knight, ſon of Mr. John Crew, lies reclined on an altar-tomb, with a vaſt perriwig, and a Roman dreſs, with a whimpering genius at head and feet. Sir John married, firſt, Mary, daughter of Thomas Wagſtaff, of Tachbrook, in Warwickſhire, Eſquire; and for his ſecond, Mary, daughter of Sir Willughby Aſton, of Aſton, Baronet. He died in 1711, aged 71.

I MUST not quit this place without letting fall a few tears, as a tribute to the memory of its honeſt rector John Allen; whoſe antiquarian knowlege and hoſpitality, I have often experienced on this great thoroughfare to the capital. From the antient rectorial houſe, at the bottom of the town, is an aweful view of the great rock of Beeſton, backed by the Peckfreton hills, tempting me to take a nearer ſurvey.

THE diſtance is about two miles. In my way I croſſed the canal at Beeſton Bridge, and called at the poor remains of Beeſton Hall, the manor-houſe, inhabited by the agent for the eſtate. This place was burnt by prince Rupert, during the civil wars. There is a tradition, that he had dined that day with the lady of the houſe. After dinner, he told her, that he was ſorry that he was obliged to make ſo bad return to her hoſpitality; adviſed her to ſecure any valuable effects ſhe had, for he muſt order the houſe to be burnt that night, leaſt it ſhould be garriſoned by the enemy.

THIS manor had been part of the barony of Malpas, and was held under the lords, by the family of De Bunbury; who changed their Norman name, St. Pierre, and aſſumed that of the place where they firſt ſettled.

[Page 10] IN 1271, or the fifty-ſixth of Henry III. Henry de Bunbury, and Margery his wife, gave it to their nephew Richard, who made the place his reſidence, and aſſumed its name. It continued in his family for many generations. Sir George Beeſton poſſeſſed it in the forty-fourth of Queen Elizabeth. At length, by the marriage of Margaret, daughter of Sir Hugh Beeſton, with William Whitemore, of Leighton, it was conveyed into that houſe; and as ſuddenly transferred, by Bridget, heireſs of Mr. Whitemore, to Darcie Savage, ſecond ſon to Thomas Viſcount Savage, of Rock Savage; whoſe grand-daughter, another Bridget, brought it by marriage to Sir Thomas Moſtyn, Baronet, with the lordſhips of Peckfreton, Leighton, and Thornton; in whoſe houſe they ſtill remain. This lady was a Roman Catholic. Tradition is warm in her praiſe, and full of her domeſtic virtues, and the particular attention that ſhe ſhewed in obliging her domeſtics, of each religion, to attend their reſpective churches. Her huſband and ſhe were lovely and pleaſant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided: they died within a day or two of each other, at Gloddaeth, in Caernarvonſhire, and were interred in the neighboring church of Eglwys Rbôs.

Figure 1. BEESTON CASTLE.

THIS rock is crowned with the ruins of a ſtrong fortreſs, [Note: BEESTON CASTLE.] which roſe in the year 1220; founded by Randle Blondeville, earl of Cheſter, on his return out of the Holy Land; for which purpoſe, and for the building, of Chartley Caſtle, he raiſed a tax upon all his eſtates *. At that time it belonged to the lords of the manor of Beeſton; from whom he obtained leave to erect his caſtle. It devolved afterwards to the crown; for, according to Erdeſwick, * [...]r Hugh Beeſton purchaſed it from Queen Elizabeth, and reſtored it to his lordſhip.

It had been a place of very great ſtrength. The acceſs, about midway of the ſlope, was defended by a great gateway, and a ſtrong wall fortified with round towers, which ran from one edge of the precipice to the other, acroſs the ſlope; but never ſurrounded the hill, as is moſt erroneouſly repreſented in the old prince. Some of the walls, and about ſix or ſeven rounders, ſtill [...]iſt. A ſquare tower, part of the gateway, is alſo ſtanding. [...]th [...]n this cincture is a large area, perhaps four or five acres in [...]xtent. Near the top is the caſtle, defended, on this ſide, by an amazing ditch, cut out of the live rock; on the other, by the [...]upt precipice that hangs over the vale of Cheſhire.

THE entrance is through a noble gateway, guarded on each [...]e by a great rounder, whoſe walls are of a prodigious thickneſs. [Page 12] Within the yard is a rectangular building, the chapel of the place. The draw-well was of a moſt ſurprizing depth; being ſunk through the higher part of the rock, to the level of Beeſton brook, that runs beneath. In the area juſt mentioned, was another well: both at this time are filled up; but King remembered the firſt to have been eighty, the other ninety-one, yards deep, although the laſt is ſaid to have been half filled with ſtones and rubbiſh.

WE are quite unacquainted with the events that befel this ſtrong hold, for ſeveral centuries after its foundation. Slow ſays, that Richard II. lodged here his great treaſures during his expedition into Ireland, and garriſoned it with an hundred men of arms, choſen and able; who, on the approach of Henry duke of Lanceſter, yielded it to the uſurper. But other hiſtorians aſſert, his treaſures were placed in the caſtle of Holt.

THE fortreſs certainly fell in ruins ſoon after this reign; for Ireland, in his poem on the birth of Edward VI. ſpeaks of it as ſuch, when he makes Fome to alight on its ſummit, and foretell its reſtoration.

E [...]plicuit dehine FANA ſuas perniciter alas,
Altaque fulmia [...] [...] Jovis atria victrix,
Circuiens liquidi ſpatioſa volumina coeli.
Tum quoque duſpexit terram, ſublimis, ocellcs
Sidereos ſigens Biſduni in moenia caſiri, &c.
Thence to Jove's palace ſhe prepared to fly
With out-ſtretch'd pi [...]ons, thro' the yielding ſky;
Wide o'er the [...] of the ample ſpace,
Survey'd the ſubject earth and human race.
*
[Page 13]
Sublime in air ſhe caſt her radiant eyes,
Where far-fam'd Beeſton's airy turrets riſe:
High on a rock it ſtood, whence all around
Each fruitful valley, and each riſing ground,
In beauteous proſpect lay; theſe ſcenes to view.
Deſcending ſwift, the wondering goddeſs flew.
Perched on the topmoſt pinnacle, ſhe ſhook
Her ſounding plumes, and thus in rapture ſpoke:
From Syrian climes the conquering Randolph came,
"Whoſe well-fought fields bear record of his name.
"To guard his country, and to check his foes,
"By Randolph's hands this glorious fabric roſe:
"Tho' now in ruin'd heaps thy bulwarks lie,
"Revolving time ſhall raiſe thoſe bulwarks high,
"If faith to antient prophecies be due;
"Then Edward ſhall thy priſtine ſtate renew."

R. W.

The caſtle was reſtored to its former ſtrength, between the days of Leland and the ſad contentions betwixt the king and parlement, in the times of Charles I. It was firſt poſſeſſed by the parlement; [Note: SI [...]G [...].] but on the 13th of September 1643, was taken by the royaliſts, under the famous partizan Captain Sandford; who ſcaled the ſteep ſides of the rock, and took it by ſurprize *. Steel, the governor, was ſuſpected of treachery, tried, and ſhot to death.

THE parlement made a vigorous attempt to recover a place of ſuch importance, and beſieged it for ſeventeen weeks; during which time it was gallantly defended by Captain Valet. At length, on the approach of prince Rupert, the enemy abandoned the attack, on the 18th of March 1644 .

[Page 14] IN the following year it was taken, after a moſt vigorous defence of eighteen weeks. The defendants were reduced to the neceſſity of eating cats, &c. when the brave Colonel Ballard, out of mere compaſſion to the poor remains of his garriſon, conſented to beat a parley, and obtained the moſt honorable conditions, far beyond what would be expected in ſuch extremity; viz. to march out, the governor and officers with their horſes and arms, and their own proper goods (which loaded two waggons); the common ſoldiers with colors flying, drums beating, matches alight, aproportion of cannon and ball, and a convoy to guard them to Flint Caſtle. On Sunday, the 16th of March, he ſurrendered the caſtle to Sir William Brereton, and, according to articles, marched out with his men, now reduced to about ſixty *. The fortreſs ſoon after underwent the fate of the other ſeats of loyalty.

FROM Beeſton Caſtle I continued my journey about two miles to Bunbury; a village, [Note: BUNBURY.] and the ſeat of the pariſh church. This was the Boliberie of Doomſday Book; which, with ſeveral neighboring places in the antient hundred of Riſeton, now comprehended in that of Ledeſbury, were poſſeſſed by Robert Fitzhugh. The family who aſſumed the name of the place, held it under him and his ſucceſſors, till, Humphrey dying without iſſue, his ſiſters, Ameria and Joan, became co-heireſſes. Ameria's ſhare came to the Patricks, and from them to the St. Piers. At length Iſabel, daughter and heireſs of Uriam St. Pier, brought it by marriage to Sir Walter —; who ſold his ſhare of the advowſon of the church to the famous Sir Hugh de Calvely. Joan's moiety came to her ſon Alexander, who ſtill continued the name De Bunbury. Sir Hugh de Calvely obtaining likewiſe [Page 15] the other ſhare of the church, erected here a college for a maſter and ſix chaplains; for which purpoſe he obtained licence, dated March 12th 1386, from Richard II. on paying to the king the ſum of forty pounds. It was inſtituted for the good ſtate of the King and of Sir Hugh, as long as they lived; and on their death, for the ſouls of them and their progenitors, and thoſe of all the faithful *. Its revenue was an hundred marks, but at the diſſolution, was £48. 2s. 8d. when the foundation conſiſted of a dean, five vicars, and two choriſters.

IN the fourteenth of Queen Elizabeth, it was purchaſed of the crown by Thomas Alderſey, of London, merchant-taylor, a ſecond ſon of the houſe of Spurſtow, in this pariſh. Here he founded a preacher's place, of 100 marks a year, with a good houſe and glebe; an aſſiſtant or curate, with £20 a year; the other for an uſher , with £10; ten pounds a year to the poor; and ſeveral other charitable gifts. The diſpoſal of the places here are in the haberdaſhers company, London.

IN reſpect to the ſucceſſion of the manor, Sir Thomas Cokeſey, in the latter end of the reign of Henry VII. having no iſſue, alienated his ſhare to the Bunburies. In the thirty-ſecond of Henry VIII. Richard Bunbury was lord of the manor; from whom the family of the Bunburies of Stanny, in Wirral, and the preſent Sir Charles, is lineally deſcended.

THE church is a handſome building, embattled, [Note: CHURCH] and the tower ornamented with pinnacles. The architecture ſeems of the time of Henry VII. It is dedicated to St. Boniface; from whom the [Page 16] place takes its name. Whether the patron was Boniface, an Engliſhman, firſt archbiſhop of Mentz, who died in 754, or Pope Boniface the Firſt, who died in 423, I cannot determine; for both received their apotheoſis.

THE church is diſtinguiſhed by the magnificent tomb of Sir Hugh de Calvely, [Note: TOMB.] whoſe effigies in white marble lies on it recumbent. He is armed in the faſhion of the times; and, to give an idea of his vaſt proweſs, his figure is repreſented ſeven feet and a half long. He was the Arthur of Cheſhire; the glory of the county: accordingly the moſt prodigious ſeats are recorded of him. Whether, like Milo, he could kill a bull with a blow of his fiſt, is not ſaid; but our ballads give Sir Hugh no more than the honor of devouring a calf at a meal. His head reſts on a helmet, with a calf's head for the creſt, alluſive to his name; yet probably gave riſe to the fable.

Sir Hugh ſprung from a neighboring hamlet (of which I ſhall have occaſion to ſpeak) from whence he took his ſurname. According to the caſt of the times, he fought adventures in the military line; and, like a ſoldier of fortune, firſt appeared a principal commander of the Grandes Compagnies, Tard venus, or Malandrins, a ſpecies of banditti, formed out of the diſbanded ſoldiery of different nations. On the captivity of king John, at the battle of Poitiers, they amounted at leſt to above forty thouſand veteran troops. They lived upon plunder; yet were ready to join the ſide moſt adverſe to France. At the battle of Auray, in 1364, Sir Hugh * ſerved with a conſiderable body of them, under the Engliſh general, Lord Chandos; and had the honor of turning the fortune of the day, in which was taken the great De Gueſelin.

[Page 17] IN 1366, Sir Hugh was won over by that illuſtrious general, (again at the head of the armies of France) to join him in an expedition into Spain, to dethrone Peter the Cruel, king of Caſtile. The enterprize was ſucceſsful; but, on the expreſs command of Edward III. to Lord Chandos, Sir Hugh de Calvely, and others of his ſubjects, leaders of the companies, to forbear hoſtilities * againſt Peter, they deſerted the quarrel they had eſpouſed; and, on the appearance of the Black Prince in Spain, who, to his diſgrace, took part with the tyrant, Sir Hugh, and a great body of the companies, joined him. The prince reinſtated Peter on the throne, after the great victory of Najara over his rival Henry of Traſtamare; to which the bravery of Sir Hugh, and his troops, was highly contributory. On the recall of the Black Prince, by his father, in 1367. Sir Hugh was left commander of the companies. Hiſtory gives him a royal conſort, in reward of his valour, and marries him to the queen of Arragon. If at this period he took a moſt antiquated piece of royalty; for I can find no other dowager of that kingdom, unleſs Leonora, relict of Alonſo IV. who became a widow in 1335, was then alive. There was no iſſue by this match; but by his ſecond wife, heireſs to Mottram Lord of Mottram, his line was continued.

IN 1376, the laſt year of Edward III. he was appointed to the important government of Calais. In 1378, he plundered and burnt La Bas Bentagne, with ſeveral veſſels which lay in harbour: he alſo retook the caſtle of Mark, loſt before by neglect. In 1379, he reſigned the place to the earl of Saluſbury, and was appointed by Richard II. admiral of his fleet .

[Page 16] [...] [Page 17] [...]

[Page 18] In 1382, we find him governor of Guernſey, and the adjacent iſles. The laſt mention we find of him, is in a cauſe that was to be determined in 1388 *; after which, hiſtory is ſilent in reſpect to this hero. Fuller remarks, ‘It was as impoſſible for ſuch a ſpirit not to be, as not to be active.’ probably old-age might ſubdue his enterprizing ſoul; for I find that he lived to the reign of Henry IV : but mention is made of the weak ſtate of his body in Rymer's record of the cauſe .

THIS tomb is kept always very neat; which is owing to the piety of Dame Mary Calveley, of Lea; who, in 1705, left the intereſt of an hundred pounds, to be diſtributed annually among certain poor of this pariſh, on condition they attended divine ſervice while they were able and ſwept the chancel, and cleaned the monument.

THE Ridley chapel, founded in 1527, belonging to the Egertons of Ridley, is ſeparated from the church by a wood-work ſkreen, painted. This had been their place of interment; but nothing monumental remains, unleſs the impreſſion of a plate of a kneeling man, againſt one of the walls.

IN the chancel is a recumbent figure of Sir George Beeſton, who died in 1600. This monument was erected by his ſon Sir Hugh, the laſt male of this antient line; who for ſome time ſurvived his only ſon George.

[Page 19] AT a ſmall diſtance from Bunbury, I fell into the great road, oppoſite to Alpram, a hamlet, whoſe name is corrupted from the Saxon Alburgham, in the Doomſday book. In after-times it was the ſeat of the Pages, now extinct.

A LITTLE farther lies Calvely, long the property of that illuſtrious family, now likewiſe loſt. The place was beſtowed on a Hugh, by Richard Vernon, Baron of Shipbrook, about the time of Richard I. In Edward the IlI.'s time, it came to the Davenports, by the marriage of Arthur to Catharine, daughter and heireſs of Robert de Calvely: in which family it has continued till the preſent time.

MY road lay along the low unpleaſant lane that led towards Nantwich; the proſpect frequently deformed by the great foſſes of the unfortunate canal, falling in on each ſide of the road; for it croſſes at Barbridge, and is finiſhed from thence to Nantwich. This was only a ſecondary conſideration, executed on the hopes of conſiderable profit in the carriage of ſalt and cheeſe. The original and principal object was, to continue the main trunk by Church Minſhul to the great Staffordſhire canal, near Middlewich, and by that means ſhare in the freight of the goods of the oppoſite ſide of the kingdom: but various cauſes have fruſtrated all hopes of that benefit; and this part of the plan remains unattempted.

AT Acton the proſpect mends a little. That village, [Note: ACTON.] with its handſome new church, ſtand on a ſmall riſing, and command another great extent of flat, beyond Nantwich. This place, [Note: EARL MORKAR'S.] before the Conqueſt, was poſſeſſed by Morkar, the gallant brother of the gallant earl Edwin, laſt earl of Mercia. At that time, the hundred it lay in was called Warmundeſtreu, at preſent Namptwich. [Page 20] Actune, as it is ſtiled in the Doomſday book, was a very conſiderable place. There were eight hides of land taxable: there were thirty plough-lands; in the lord's demeſn three: two ſervants, thirteen villeyns, and fifteen boors, with ſeven ploughlands, a mill for the uſe of the court (curiae) and ten acres of meadow: a wood ſix leagues long, and one broad: an aery of hawks: two preſbyters, who had a plough-land: two aliens, having a plough-land and a half: a ſervant: ſix villeyns: ſeven boors, with four plough-lands.

THIS not only ſhews the greatneſs of this Saxon manor, but that it was the ſeat of Morkar, by the proviſion made for his ſupport. The tenants had likewiſe the right of pleas in the hall of their lord, and one houſe in Wich (Nantwich) where they might make ſalt without interruption. In the time of the Confeſſor, the manor was valued at ten pounds a year; at the Conqueſt, at only ſix. It may be obſerved, once for all, that the troubles occaſioned at that event, and the ravages committed, inſtantly ſunk the value of the land.

AT the Conqueſt, this place was a member of the barony of Wich Malhang, or Nantwich. Hugh, ſecond lord of Nantwich, beſtowed the advowſon of the living, with the lands belonging, on the abbey of Cumbermere, which he had founded in 1113 *.

THE third, or laſt baron, had only daughters, among whom the eſtates were divided; and Acton ſell to the ſhare of Alinora, the eldeſt; whoſe daughter Joan marrying Lord Lovel, it remained in that line as late as 1389, the thirteenth of Richard II. when it was poſſeſſed by Sir John Lovel. It was afterwards the [Page 21] property of the Arderns. Sir Leonard Ardorn was lord of it in 1407, the ninth of Henry IV.

IN 1498, the fourteenth Henry VII. and in 1541, the thirty-third of Henry VIII. it was in the heirs of Ralph Ardens. In the reign of Queen Mary it was the property of the Wilbrahams of Woodhey, in this pariſh; and at preſent belongs to Wilbraham Tollemache, Eſquire, by virtue of the marriage of Grace, eldeſt daughter of Sir Richard Wilbraham, Baronet, with his anceſtor Lionel earl of Dyſart.

ABOUT twenty years ago, [Note: CHURCH.] the ſteeple and roof of the church were deſtroyed; but the whole has ſince been reſtored, in a very handſome manner. One monument is in good preſervation, notwithſtanding this church was a temporary priſon after the battle of Nantwich, in the civil wars of Charles I; but the priſoners were of the party which reſpected theſe memorials of the dead.

THE moſt ancient is one in St. Mary's chapel, in memory of Sir William Manwaring, of Over Pever, and of Badely, in this neighborhood. This knight, before his departure on an expedition to Guienne, in 1393, ſettled his eſtate, and next year made his will; by which he bequeaths his body to this church, and orders a picture in alabaſter, to cover his tomb. He alſo left to the ſame church part of Chriſt's croſs, which the wife of his half-brother had ſhut up in wax, and a competent ſalary for a chaplain to ſay a competent number of maſſes, in St. Mary's chapel, for the ſake of his ſon, for ſeven years, when it might be ſuppoſed to have been redeemed from Purgatory, and

"The foul crimes done in his days of nature
"Were burnt and purg'd away."
[Page 22] After his death, which happened in 1399, a magnificent tomb was erected beneath a Gothic arch, with a large embattled ſuperſtructure. Under the arch lies Sir William in full armour, with ſuppliant hands. His head is caſed in a conic helm, bound with a fillet entwined with foliage. From his helmet is a guard of mail, which covers his neck, and riſes to his lips; over which flow two great whiſkers. His head reſts on a caſque, with an aſs's head for a creſt. Above, within the arch, is a row of half-lengths, with a book oppoſite to each; probably religious, chaunting his requiem. The whole is painted. On the edge of the tomb was this inſcription, now much defaced by time: Hic jacet William Manwaring quondam dominum de Badeleye, qui obiit die Veneris xxo ante feſtum Pentecoſtae, anno Dni. moccco nonogeſſimo nono.

THE tomb of Sir Thomas Wilbraham, Baronet, and his lady Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Roger Wilbraham, Knight, and one of the Maſters of Requeſt to James I. is very handſome. Their figures are placed on an altar-tomb, in white marble, recumbent: he in armour, long curled hair, and a turn-over, with one hand in his breaſt, the other by his ſide. Beneath him is ſpread a large cloak. The lady has a book in one hand; the other, like his, reclines on her breaſt. He died in 1660.

Figure 2. TOMB in ACTON CHURCH.

THE church had been long the place of ſepulture of the houſes of Woodhey and Badeley. The vain attention of our forefathers to poſthumous honors and ſuperſtitious rites, is well exemplified from the probate of the will of William Wilbraham, of Woodhey, who died in 1536; by which ‘he bequeaths his body to be buried before the image of our Lady, in the chancel of the church of Acton, and beſtows x9. to be laid out on a tenor bell, if the pariſh will provide the reſt; but if not, then the money to be laid out on a pax and two cruytts of ſilver, to ſerve at the high altar on good days. He further wills, that 12 white gowns be given to 12 a poor men; as alſo, that 12 torches be made, to hold about his body the day of his burial; and that a light be over him, with viii. tapers, in the middle whereof a bigger taper ſhould ſpring out; alſo, that penny-dole ſhould be given at his burial, to every perſon that would take it.’

‘HE, moreover, requires his executors to buy a ſtone of marble to lie on him, in the ſaid chancel of Acton, with pictures of himſelf and his wife, and their arms; alſo, that they put out xi £ under ſure keeping, to pay xis. yearly to a well-diſpoſed prieſt, to ſing (during twenty years) for him and his wife, children, father and mother, and all that God would be prayed for; and the ſaid ſervice to be performed in his chapel of Woodhey; which prieſt ſhould likewiſe have iv £ more yearly for his ſalary, if ſo be his heir is not pleaſed to give him his board and chamber-room *.’

[Page 24] THE monument alluded to, either never was executed, or was deſtroyed by the fall of the ſteeple.

FROM Acton, I went down a gentle deſcent to Nantwich, about a mile diſtant. Antiently this place was known only by the name of Wich, * an Anglo-Saxon word for diſtrict, or habitation; and a very common termination of a multitude of places. Here the Britiſh Nant is added, to ſhew its low ſituation.

IMMEDIATELY before the Conqueſt, its revenues were divided between the king and earl Edwin. After that event, it was beſtowed by the great proprietor of Cheſhire, Hugh Lupus, on William de Malhedeng, or de Malhang, a Norman chieftain; from whom it was called Wich Malhang. Hugh erected it into a barony, in favor of Malhedeng, and honored him with a ſeat in his parlement.

THIS dignity continued only in him and his two ſons, Hugh and William. The laſt died without iſſue male. Of his three daughters, Alionora, the eldeſt, by marriage of her daughter Joan, conveyed her ſhare to the Lord Lovels; Philippa, the ſecond, to the Audleys; and Alda, the third, to the Vernons, barons of Shipbroke.

BY theſe marriages, the barony became divided into four, reckoning the part which had been given by Hugh Malhang to the abbey of Cumbermere; and ſoon after, by different alliances, became ſplit into multitudes of other ſhares.

[Page 25] WHEN entire, it was under the government of the lord, or his ſteward; who were veſted with the uſual baronial powers. This town had been governed by a bailiff; but the election of that officer being dropt, it is at preſent under the government of the conſtables. It has likewiſe ſeveral other officers, ſuch as the rulers of walling, who were guardians of the ſalt-ſprings, and regulated all matters reſpecting their important ſtaple of the place *.

AFTER them came the ale-taſters; whoſe office related to the aſſize of bread and drink.

THE next were the health-keepers; who attended to the right of the beam-heath, antiently called the creach; and took care to preſerve it from all incroachments, or treſpaſſers.

THE leave-lookers ſuperintended the markets, inſpected the weights, and deſtroyed unwholeſome meat of every kind. Theſe correſponded a good deal with the Aediles cereales of the Romans; as the next officers, the fire-lookers, did to the triumviri nocturni. They had the care of the chimnies, and were to guard againſt all accidents that might ariſe from fire.

THE town is large, but conſiſts chiefly of old houſes. The Weever, which divides it in unequal parts, is here a ſmall ſtream, and not navigable higher than Winsford Bridge. The inhabitants of Nantwich had, many years ago, an act for making this river navigable from that place to their town; but they never carried the power into execution. The Cheſter canal is now completed from that city, and finiſhes in a handſome broad baſon, near the road between Acton and the town; but at this time, it remains [Page 26] an almoſt uſeleſs ornament to the country; nor has it, as might have been expected, given the leſt increaſe to the ſalt-trade, for which this antient town was once ſo diſtinguiſhed. Unfortunately for it, the other ſalt-towns lie more conveniently for commerce, and abound almoſt to exceſs with that uſeful article.

THE chief trade of the place is in ſhoes, which are ſent to London. Here is a ſmall manufacture of gloves; but thoſe of bone-lace and ſtockings, once conſiderable, are now loſt. In the reigns of Queen Elizabeth, and James I. the tanning buſineſs brought much wealth into the town.

THE ſalt made from the adjacent brine-ſprings, formed once a very important buſineſs. In the reign of Queen Elizabeth, here were two hundred and ſixteen ſalt-works, of ſix leads-walling each: in 1774, only two works, of five large pans of wrought iron. The duty produced from them amounts annually to near five thouſand pounds: from the whole diſtrict, including the works at Lawton, and a ſmall one at Droitwich, from eighteen to twenty thouſand pounds. The tax on this uſeful article is very conſiderable; which it bears, as being of moſt cheap fabrick, and moſt univerſal uſe. It ſeems, for that reaſon, to have been one of the earlieſt taxes of the Romans; for Ancus Martius, near 640 years before Chriſt, ſalinarum vectigal inſtituit *. This tribute was continued on the Britons when the Romans poſſeſſed our iſle.

THE latter alſo made ſalt part of the pay of their ſoldiers, which was called ſalarium; and from which is derived our word ſalary.

THE art of making ſalt was known in very early times, to the [Page 27] Gauls and Germans: it is not, therefore, likely that the Britons, who had, in ſeveral places, plenty of ſalt-ſprings, ſhould be ignorant of it. The way of making it was very ſimple, but very dirty; for they did no more than fling the water on burning wood; the water evaporated by the heat, and left the ſalt adhering to the aſhes, or charcoal *.

IT is very probable that the Britons uſed the ſpring of Nantwich for this purpoſe; numbers of pieces of half-burnt wood being frequently dug up in this neighborhood. Salinis was a place not far from hence, one of the wiches; but I am uncertain which. The Romans made uſe of the ſprings, and made ſalt by much the ſame proceſs as we do at preſent. The ſalt produced was white. It ſtruck the natives, who ſtiled this place, perhaps the firſt place where they ſaw ſalt of this kind, Heledd-Wen, or the white brine-pits, to diſtinguiſh them from the ſprings which they uſed in ſo ſlovenly a faſhion.

THE Romans were acquainted with rock-ſalt, but had not diſcovered it within the limits of Italy. There were mountains of ſalt in India. Spain afforded the tranſparent colorleſs rock-ſalt, and Cappadocia the deep yellow . The Romans were converſant in the methods of producing this uſeful article from the brine , which they practiſed in our iſland, and communicated their inſtructions to the natives. Salt was an early import into Britain, [Page 28] but it was only to the Caſſiterides, * and the neighboring parts, which were remote from the ſalt-ſprings.

THESE advantages are but ſparingly ſcattered over Great Britain: Scotland and Ireland are totally deſtitute of them. In England there are ſeveral, but few that contain ſalt ſufficient to be worked. Thus, there are ſome which riſe out of the middle of the Were, in the biſhoprick of Durham; others in Yorkſhire, Cumberland, Lancaſhire, and Oxfordſhire: all thoſe are neglected, either on account of their weakneſs, or, in ſome places, by reaſon of the dearneſs of fuel. Theſe in Cheſhire, and thoſe at Droitwich in Worceſterſhire, with the ſmall works at Weſton in Staffordſhire, are the only places where any buſineſs is done. Droitwich, and thoſe in Cheſhire, were worked by the Romans, and had the common name of Salinae.

FROM that period to the preſent, they have been ſucceſſively in uſe. The Saxons, according to their idea of liberty, divided them between the king, the great people, and the freemen. Thus, at Nantwich was one brine-pit, which gave employ to numbers of ſalinae, or works. Eight of them were between the king and earl Edwin, of which the king had two ſhares of the profits, the earl one. Edwin had likewiſe a work near his manor of Aghton, out of which was made ſalt ſufficient for the annual conſumption of his houſhold; but if any was ſold, the king had a tax of two pence, and the earl of one penny.

IN this place were likewiſe numbers of works belonging to the people of the neighborhood; which had this uſage: From Aſcenſion-day to the feaſt of St. Martin, they might carry home [Page 29] what ſalt they pleaſed; but if they ſold any on the ſpot, or anywhere in the county, they were to pay a tax to the king and the earl: but after the feaſt of St. Martin, whoſoever took the ſalt home, whether his own, or purchaſed from other works, was to pay toll, except the before-mentioned work of the earl; which enjoyed exemption, according to antient uſage.

IT appears, that the king and earl farmed out their eight works; for they were obliged to give, on the Friday of the weeks in which they were worked, xvi. boilings; of which xv. made one ſum of ſalt. This is a meaſure, which, according to Spelman, amounts to a horſe-load, oreight buſhels. The pans of other people, from Aſcenſion-day to that of St. Martin, were not ſubject to this farm on the Friday; but from St. Martin's day to Aſcenſion they were liable to thoſe cuſtoms, in the ſame manner as thoſe of the king and the earl.

THE Welſh uſed to ſupply themſelves from theſe pits, before the union of our country with England. Henry III. in order to diſtreſs them, during the wars he had with them, took care to put a ſtop to the works, and deprive them of this neceſſary article.

ALL theſe ſalt-works were confined between the river and a certain ditch. If any perſon was guilty of a crime, within theſe limits, he was at liberty of making atonement by a mulct of two ſhillings, or xxx. boilings of ſalt; except in the caſe of murder or theft, for which he was to ſuffer death. If crimes of that nature were committed without the precinct, the common uſage of the county was to be obſerved.

IN the time of the Confeſſor, this place yielded a rent of xx [Page 30] pounds, with all the pleas of the hundred; but when earl Hugh received it, it was a waſte.

THE Germans had an idea of a peculiar ſanctity attendant on ſalt-ſprings; that they were nearer to heaven than other places; that the prayers of mortals were nowhere ſooner heard; and that, by the peculiar favor of the gods, the rivers and the woods were productive of ſalt, not, as in other places, by the virtue of the ſea, but by the water being poured on a burning pile of wood *.

WHETHER this notion might not have been delivered from the Germans to their Saxon progeny, and whether they might not, in after-times, deliver their grateful thanks for theſe advantages, I will not determine; but certain it is, that on Aſcenſion-day the old inhabitants of Nantwich piouſly ſang a hymn of thankſgiving, for the bleſſing of the brine. A very antient pit, called the Old Brine, was alſo held in great veneration, and, till within theſe few years, was annually, on that feſtival, bedecked with boughs, flowers, and garlands, and was encircled by a jovial band of young people, celebrating the day with ſong and dance .

THIS feſtival was probably one of the reliques of Saxon paganiſm, which Mellitus might permit his proſelytes to retain, according to the political inſtructions he received from Gregory the Great , on his miſſion, leaſt, by too rigid an adherence to the purity of the Chriſtian religion, he ſhould deter the Engliſh from accepting his doctrine. In fact, ſalt was, from the earlieſt times, in the higheſt eſteem, and admitted into religious ceremonies: it [Page 31] was conſidered as a mark of league and friendſhip. ‘Neither ſhalt thou,’ ſays the Jewiſh Legiſlator, * ‘ſuffer the ſalt of the covenant of thy God to be lacking from thy meat-offering With all thy offerings thou ſhalt offer ſalt.’ Homer gives to ſalt the epithet of divine. Both Greeks and Romans mixed ſalt with their ſacrificial cakes. In their luſtrations they made uſe of ſalt and water, which gave riſe, in after-times, to the ſuperſtition of holy water; only the Greeks made uſe of an olive branch inſtead of a bruſh, to ſprinkle it on the objects of purification.

Next, with pure ſulphur purge the houſe, and bring
"The pureſt water from the freſheſt ſpring;
"This, mix'd with ſalt, and with green olive crown'd,
"Will cleanſe the late contaminated ground."
Theocritus, Idyl. 24.

Stuckius tells us, that the Muſcovites thought that a prince could not ſhew a gueſt a greater mark of affection, than by ſending to him ſalt from his own table . The dread of ſpilling of ſalt, is a known ſuperſtition among us and the Germans, being reckoned a preſage of ſome future calamity, and particularly, that it foreboded domeſtic feuds; to avert which, it is cuſtomary to fling ſome ſalt over the ſhoulder into the fire, in a manner truly claſſical :

Molibit et averſos penates
Farre pio, ſaliente mica.

IN this town was an antient hoſpital dedicated to St. Nicholas, [Page 32] endowed with a portion of tythes, which were granted to W. Grys by Queen Elizabeth *. The hiſtorian of this place alſo mentions a priory, dependent on Cumbermere, and a domus leproſorum, or lazar-houſe, called St. Laurence's Hoſpital; both which ſtood in the Welſh Row, the ſtreet next to Acton; but at preſent, even their ſcite is hardly known. Here was, beſides, a chapel called St. Anne's, near to the bridge; but that, likewiſe, has been totally deſtroyed.

NEAR the end of this ſtreet ſtands a large houſe, called Town's End, till of late the reſidence of the very worthy family of the Wilbrahams; that honeſt and diſtinguiſhed lawyer, the late Randle Wilbraham, was a younger brother of the late owner, and, with unblemiſhed reputation, raiſed a vaſt fortune by his profeſſion. For ſeveral years before his death, he retired from buſineſs, and enjoyed the fruits of his labors in an hoſpitable retirement.

THE church is a very handſome pile, in form of a croſs, with an octagonal tower in the centre. The eaſt and weſt windows are filled with elegant tracery. The roof of the chancel is of ſtone, adorned with pretty ſculpture. The ſtalls are neat. Tradition ſays, that they were brought, at the diſſolution, from the abbey of Vale Royal.

Figure 3. NANTWICH CHURCH

THIS town was the only one in the county which continued firm to the parlement from the beginning to the end of the civil wars. It underwent a ſevere ſiege in January 1643, by Lord Biron; who, after the ſignal defeat he here experienced from the army commanded by Sir Thomas Fairfax *, on the 25th of that month retired with his ſhattered forces to Cheſter. The place was defended only by mud-walls and ditches, formed in a haſty manner by the inhabitants and country people; who were highly incenſed at ſome cruel and impolitic treatment they had met with from the royaliſts. The garriſon defended themſelves with great obſtinacy. The moſt remarkable attack was on the 18th of January, when the beſiegers were repulſed with great loſs. Among the ſlain on their ſide, was the famous Captain Sandford; who again employed the eloquence of his pen, but to as little purpoſe as he did before at Hawarden. On each occaſion he maintains the ſame ſtile.

To the Officers, Soldiers, and Gentlemen in Namptwyche, theſe.

YOUR drum can inform you, Acton church is no more apriſon, but now free for honeſt men to do their devotions therein; wherefore be perſuaded from your incredulity, and reſolve God [Page 34] will not forſake his anointed. Let not your zeal in a bad cauſe dazzle your eyes any longer; but wipe away your vain conceits, that have too long let you into blind errors. Loth I am to undertake the trouble of perſuading you into obedience, becauſe your erroneous opinions do moſt violently oppoſe reaſon amongſt you; but, however, if you love your town, accept of quarter; and if you regard your lives, work your ſafeties by yielding your town to Lord Byron, for his Majeſty's uſe. You ſee now my battery is fixed; from whence fire ſhall eternally viſit you, to the terror of the old, and females, and conſumption of your thatched houſes. Believe me, gentlemen, I have laid by my former delays, and am now reſolved to batter, burn, ſtorm, and deſtroy you. Do not wonder that I write unto you, having officers in chief above me: 'tis only to adviſe you, becauſe I have ſome friends amongſt you, for whoſe ſafety I wiſh you to accept of my Lord Byron's conditions; he is gracious, and will charitably conſider of you. Accept of this as a ſummons, that you forthwith ſurrender the town; and by that teſtimony of your fealty to his Majeſty, you may obtain favour. My firelocks, you know, have done ſtrange feats, both by day and night; and hourly we will not fail in our private viſits of you. You have not as yet received mine alarms; wherefore expect ſuddenly to hear from my battery and approaches before your Welſh Row.

Tho. Sandford, Captain of Firelocks.

GENTLEMEN,

LET theſe reſolve your jealouſies concerning our religion: I vow by the faith of a Chriſtian, I know not one Papiſt in our [Page 35] army; and, as I am a gentleman, we are no Iriſh, but true-born Engliſh, and real Proteſtants alſo, born and bred. Pray miſtake us not, but receive us into your fair eſteem. I know we intend loyalty to his Majeſty, and will be no other but faithful in his ſervice. This, Gentlemen, believe, from

Your's, Tho. Sandford.

AMONG many other priſoners of diſtinction taken by Sir Thomas Fairfax, was Colonel George Monk, in after-times the famous inſtrument of the reſtoration of Charles II. Fairfax was ſo well acquainted with his merit, that he was determined that he never ſhould have an opportunity of exerting his courage again in the royal cauſe. He ſent him up to London, where he was committed priſoner to the Tower, and confined near four years. On his releaſe he joined the parlement; but, through a ſenſe of honor, declined acting againſt his old maſter: and employed his ſword againſt the Iriſh rebels, in which ſervice he was engaged till after the death of the King.

Nantwich was the reſidence of the widow of the great Milton, during the latter part of her life. * She was the daughter of Mr. Minſhul, of Stoke, in this neighborhood. The poet married her in the fifty-third or fifty-fourth year of his age, wanting, in the ſeaſon of his infirmities, aſſiſtance from a dearer relation than that of domeſtics. I fear that he was diſappointed; for ſhe is ſaid to have been a lady of moſt violent ſpirit. Yet ſhe maintained a [Page 36] great reſpect for his memory; and could not bear to hear the leaſt imputation of plagiariſm aſcribed to him. She uſed to ſay, that he ſtole from nobody but the muſe who inſpired him; and that muſe was God's grace, and the Holy Spirit, which viſited him nightly. She probably had heard him ſay as much, in the compoſition of his invocation to Urania, in his 7th book:

—upled by THEE,
Into the heav'n of heav'ns I have preſum'd,
An earthly gueſt, and drawn empyreal air,
THY tempting.

And again, with greater force,

More ſafe I ſing with mortal voice, unchang'd
To hoarſe or mute, though fall'n on evil days,
On evil days though fall'n, and evil tongues;
In darkneſs and with dangers compaſs'd round,
And ſolitude; yet not alone, while THOU
VISIT'ST MY SLUMBERS NIGHTLY.

I CONTINUED my journey along the London road, flat, tedious, and heavy. At the fourth ſtone lieth, a little out of the way, Wibbunbury, a ſmall village, ſuppoſed to have taken, its name from Wibba, ſecond king of the Mercians, who died in 615. The manor was antiently in the great family of the Praers. Sir Robert de Praer gave it to his ſon Richard, about the reign of King John, upon condition of rendering to the heirs of his elder brother two barbed arrows yearly, on the feaſt of St. Peter and St. Paul, in lieu of all other ſervices. But the Praers remitted all their right in this manor, and the patronage of the church, to the biſhop of Litchfield and Coventry, in 1276, the fifth of Edward I. and the biſhops continued to be lords of the manor [Page 37] till the ſecond of Queen Elizabeth; about which time it was alienated: but the biſhops ſtill continue patrons of the church.

THERE had been, in much earlier times, a family in this place which took their name from it; for Richard de Wibbunbury was ſheriff of Cheſhire in 1233. Whether the Praers ever aſſumed that name, is uncertain. It is probable, that the Richard abovementioned was the ſame with the ſheriff, and took the addition on receiving the place from his father.

THIS village was formerly ſurrounded with gentlemen's ſeats. Among thoſe was Lee, the reſidence of a family of the ſame name; from which were deſcended the Lees, earls of Litchfield, derived from Benedict, a ſon of this houſe, who made a ſettlement at Quarendon, in Buckinghamſhire, in the beginning of the reign of Edward IV.

THE church is a very handſome building, embattled and pinnacled: the tower lofty; the roof is timbered on the inſide, and carved with the arms of the various benefactors. Part of the church was taken down in 1591; at which time many of the monuments were deſtroyed: of thoſe remaining, are ſeveral in memory of the Delves of Doddington. The moſt antient is a large altar-tomb of alabaſter, with the figures of a father, and ſon, and lady, engraven on the ſtone: at the feet of each is a dog, and beneath, a dolphin: on the front of the tomb, ſeveral figures, their progeny. The perſons repreſented are Sir John Delves, his ſon John, and his wife Ellen, daughter of Ralph Egerton, of Wrinehill, in the county of Stafford; for which, probably on account of conſanguinity, a diſpenſation was granted in 1439 *.

SIR John was in high favor with Henry VI. and enjoyed ſeveral [Page 38] lucrative poſts under him. This he repaid with the moſt faithful adherence, raiſed forces in his ſupport, and loſt his life valiantly fighting, in the fatal field at Tewkeſbury, on Saturday, May the 4th, 1471. His ſon, with numbers of perſons of diſtinction, took refuge in the abbey. The furious Edward purſued them, with his drawn ſword, into the church *; but was oppoſed by a reſolute prieſt, who for the preſent diverted his vengeance by liſting up the hoſt, interpoſing the ſacred myſtery, and denied him admittance till he obtained a promiſe of pardon; depending on the king's word, they neglected making their eſcape, and continued in the ſanctuary till the Monday, when the relentleſs monarch cauſed them to be drawn out and beheaded, according to the cuſtom of the times, without any proceſs. The bodies of this unfortunate pair were at firſt buried at Tewkeſbury , but afterwards tranſlated to this place; where their remains lie, with the following inſcription:

Hic jacet Johannes Delves, miles, et Elena uxor ejus, nec non Johannes Delves, armiger, filius et heres predicti Johis. qui quidem Johannes, miles obiit quarto die Maii, anno Dni. MCCCCLXXI. quorum animabus propitietur Deus. Amen.

Ralph, the ſecond ſon of Sir John, and his wife Catharine, are repreſented on a tomb by two braſs plates. The inſcription imports, that he died the 11th March, 1513.

THE tomb of Sir Thomas Smith, of the Hough, in this pariſh, and his lady, is magnificent in its kind. Sir Thomas lies beneath a canopy, ſupported by four pillars of the Ionic order, of white marble, gilt and painted. He is repreſented recumbent and [Page 39] armed, with his gauntlets lying at his feet: his hair long, curled, and flowing: his viſage bearded and whiſkered. His lady (Anne, daughter of Sir William Brereton) has a faſhionable fore-top, a great ruff, and extended hood. Sir Thomas died on the 21ſt of December 1614; and his relict erected this monumental compliment.

ON getting into the great road, I paſſed on the left the ſcite of the antient ſeat of Lee, and an iron forge.

A LITTLE farther ſtood the antient ſeat of Doddington, originally belonging to a family of the ſame name; but in the reign of Edward II. paſſed to the Praers: in 1352, the twenty-ſixth of Edward III. to the Breſcies, by marriage with the heireſs of the houſe: but in the thirtieth of the ſame reign, John Breſcie, with Margaret his wife, alienated it to John Delves, of Delveſhall in Staffordſhire, one of the four renowned 'ſquires who diſtinguiſhed themſelves under the Lord Audley, at the battle of Poitiers. Sir John Berniers, Lord Bourchier, the noble tranſlator of Froiſſart, relates the deed with all the ſimplicity of the original. ‘But when Lord James Audeley ſawe that ſhoulde nedes fyght (he ſayde to the Prynce) I have alwaies ſerved truly my lorde your father, and you alſo, and ſhall do as long as I live. I ſay this, becauſe I made ones a vow, that the firſt batayle that other the Kynge your father, or anie of his chyldren, ſhoulde be at, howe that I wulde be one of the fyrſt ſetters on, or elſe to dye in the ſayle. Therefore I requyre your Grace, as in rewarde for any ſervyce that ever I dyde to the Kynge your father, or to you, that you will gyve me licence to departe fro' you, and to ſet up my ſelf there, as I maye accomplyſhe my vowe. The Prince, according to his deſyre (and ſayde) Sir James, God gyve you [Page 40] this daye that grace to be the beſt Knyght of all others, and to take hym by the hande. Than the Knyght departed fro the Prince, and went to the foremoſt front of all the batayles all, onely accompanyed with four Squyers, who promyſed nat to ſayle him. This Lorde James was a ryghte ſage and a valiant knyght, and by hym was muche of the hooſte ordeyned and governed the day before. — The Lord James Audeley, with his foure Squyers, was in the front of that battel, and theſe dyd marvels in armes; and by great prowes, he came and fought with Sir Arnolde Dandrchen, under his own banner; and there they fought longe togyder, and Sir Arnolde was there ſore handled. — And there was Sir Arnolde Dandrchen taken pryſoner by other men than by Syr James Audeley or his foure Squyers; for yt daye he never toke priſoner, but always foughte and wente on his enemyes. — On the Englyſhe parte, the Lord James Audeley, with the ayde of his foure Squyers, foughte alwayes in the chyefe of the batayle: he was ſore hurte in the bodye, and in the vyſage. As longe as his breth ſerved him he fought: at laſt, at the end of the batayle hys foure Squyers toke and brought hym out of the felde, and layed hym under a hedge ſyde, for to refreſhe hym. And they unarmed hym, and bounde up his woundes as well as they coude.—After the battle, the Prince demanded of the Knyghtes that were aboute him, for the Lord Audley, if any knewe any thing of him. Some Knights yt were there anſwered and ſayde, Sir, he is ſore hurt, and lieth in a litter here beſide; by my faith, ſaid the Prince, of his hurts I am right forye, go and knowe if he maye be broughte hider, or els I will go, and ſe him there, as he is. Than twoo Knights came to the Lord Audeley (and ſayde) Sir, [Page 41] the Prince deſireth greatly to ſee you: outher ye muſt go to him, [...] el [...] he will come to you. A, Sir, ſayde the Knighte, I thanke the Prince when he thinketh on ſo pore a knight as I am, then he called eyght of his ſervanntes, and cauſed them to here hym [...] lytter to the place where was the Prince. Than the [...] toke hym in his armes and kyſt hym, and made him [...] at ch [...]ar, and ſayd, Sir James, I ought gretly to honour you, for by your valiance ye have this day achyved ye grace and renowne of us al, and ye are reputed for the moſt valyant of al others. I retain you for ever to be my knight, with five hun [...]ed ma [...]es of yearly revenues. When Syr James Audeley was broughte to his lodgynge, the [...]ne he ſend for Syr Peter [...], his brother, and for the Lorde Bartylemawe of Bren [...], the Lorde Stephanne of Goutenton, the Lorde of Wylly, and the Lorde Raſſe Perres: all theſe were of his lynage: and than he called before them hys foure Squyers, that hadde [...] hym that daye well and trewlye: than he ſayde to the Hyde Lordes, Syrs, it hath pleaſed my Lorde the Prynce to g [...]ve [...]e five hundred markes of revenues by yere; for the which gyft I have done him but ſmall ſervyce with my bodye. [...], beholde here theſe foure Squyers, who hath alwayes ſerved [...] truely, and eſpecyally thys day: that honour that I have is by there valyantneſſe, wherefore I well 'eward them: I gyve and reſigne into their [...] the gyft that my Lorde ye Prynce [...] me of five hundred marke of yerely revenues, to [...] and their heyres for ever. I clearly diſheryte me there [...] and inh [...]ryte there [...]ythout any rebell or condyryon *.’

[Page 42] I HAVE dwelt the longer on this account of the Lord Audley, [...] only as his hiſtory is ſo mingled with that of his four 'ſquires, [...], Dut [...] Fe [...]churſt, and Hawkeſton; but becauſe all five were Cheſhire mer [...] the 'ſquires, by attachment; following their neighbor to the [...] of military glory. I muſt add, that their gallant leader enjoined them, as a further proof of his eſteem, to bear in ſome part of their coa [...] of arms, his own proper atchievement gu [...], a fret d [...]or *; which the families conſtantly re [...]ned.

THE ſtatues of Lord Audley and his four 'ſquires, cut in ſtone, are ſtill preſerved at Doddington Hall. Doctor Gower ſuppoſes that of Lord Audley to have seen original; the others to have been made in the reign of Queen Elizebeth, when the late man [...]o [...] was [...].

SIR John (for he was knighted by Edward III.) was diſtinguiſhed by ſeveral marks of royal favo [...] had the wardſhip of the Dutcheſs of Bre [...]g [...]e: was conſtituted one of the juſtices of the King's Bench, and had [...]cence to embattle his houſe at Doddington. He beque [...]ced his body to be buried in the church of St. James, [...]t Audley in Staffordſhire, and, dying on the 16th of Auguſt 1309, was interred there, according to his deſire. Near him, in the ſame church, were depoſited the remains of his illuſtrious patr [...]n.

Audley lies a very few miles to the north-eaſt of Doddington, ſeated on the top of [...] ill, on the road between Nantwich [...] [...]. A reveren [...]ed curioſity led me once to viſit the [...] [...]ques of theoſe her [...]es. Theſe of the Lord Audley [...]e beneath a [Page 43] [...]ain altar-tomb, formerly having his figure on the ſlab, engraven on a ſmall braſs plate.

His 'ſquire is perpetuated in a more oſtentatious manner, and [...]reſented in alaba [...]er, at full length, with his coat of arms on his breaſt. The inſcription is loſt.

ONE of the reſidences of the Audleys was at this village: from which they took their name. A farm occupies the ſcite of their [...]uſe; but in latter times they inhabited Heleigh Caſtle, about [...] miles diſtant.

THE L [...]s had many privileges he [...]; ſuch as court-lect, tumprel, and gallows: nor could any one [...]rreſt a perſon here, except [...] officer of the manor. Theſe eſtates paſſed, by marriage of Sir [...]n T [...]uchet, to Joan, daughter of the great Lord Audley, and [...]nd co-heir of his ſon Nicholas. George Touchet, Lord Audley, ſold it, in 1577, to Sir Gilbert Gerrard; from whoſe fa [...]ly it deſcended to the Fleetwoods; and in this century was loſt [...] ſingle night by the caſt of a die.

THERE is a particularity in the ſituation of the houſe of Har [...]nd, adjacent to this pariſh, which I cannot forbear men [...]ng Whenever the family go to church (which is that of [...]) thev [...] out of the province of Canterbury into that of [...] paſs through two counties, viz. Staffordſhire and Cheſhire; [...]hes, Woolſta [...] Audley, and Lawton; three conſtable [...] T [...]ſ [...]l, Chell, and Lawton two hundreds, Pirchill and [...] and two dioceſes, L [...]tchfield and Cheſter.

[...]gton continued in the family of the Del [...]es till the preſent [...] when, by the failure of iſſue male, in deſcended to the [...] of [...]ghton in the county of Stafford, by virtue of the [...] of Sir Br [...]an Broughton, in the [...]ear 1700, with Elezabeth, [Page 44] daughter of Sir Thomas delve [...], Baronet. The houſe is feated in a yark, wa [...]ed on one ſide by a large mere; with a ſmall Hand, o [...]ted with an elegant rotundo. The preſent owner, Sir Themes Bryghton, is now building a new houſe, in a magnificent [...], and [...] a far more [...]greeable ſituation, at the head of the [...] a [...] ſome diſtance from the old manſion. The ancient houſe was fo [...]fied, and garriſoned during the civil wars; and taken and retaken in the courſe of the conteſt.

[...]TER, [...]av [...]ling about there miles ſurther, in the ſame tedious [...]e, a p [...]o [...] of SHROPSHIRE preſents a hilly front, [Note: W [...].] and inter [...]cts [...] read. On the top of the aſcent lies Wore, or Oare, a [...]m [...]e [...] of a few houſes, with a ſmall chapel, dependent on the rectory of Muccieſten, in the county of Stafford. Old Stow in [...]o [...]ms us that Ran [...]alph Woolley, of London, merchant-taylor, left to the reader of the place £5 for freely inſtructing the children of the inhabitants of this pariſh.

FROM W [...] I qu [...]ted, for the ſake of a ſmall digreſſion, the London road, and at about two miles diſtance enter, at Bearſton [...] county of STAFFORD*.

A LI [...]TL [...] father ſtands V [...]ccl [...]ſion, [Note: [...] ] a ſmall village, ſeated on a [...] ſing ground. The church, [...]dicated to Si. Mary, a rectory in the gift of John Crew, h [...]quire, of Crew, lord of the manor. I [...] the twentie [...] of the Cono [...]or, it wat held by Kenning, one of the Ty [...]nes it afterwards was poſſeſſed by the Morgans, [...] [Page 45] [...] weſt country, till about the firſt of Queen Elizabeth; when [...] ſold by Robert Morgan, Eſquire, to Sir Thomas Oſſley, [...] Lord Mayor of London in 1556; whom Fuller calls the [...] of that city, not for his low ſtature, but high charity.

FROM the tower of the church, [Note: BATTLE OF BLOREHEATE.] Margaret of Anjou the faithful [...] ſpirited conſort of Henry VI. ſaw the fierce battle of Blore [...], fatal to the cauſe of her meek huſband, then at Coleſhill. [...]chard Nev [...]l, Earl of Saluſbury, commanded the Yorkiſts: he was [...] time on his march from Middleham Caſtle, with four or five thouſand men, under pretence of ſettling with the King the [...], of the two houſes. Margaret, fearing for her huſband's [...] directed Lord Audley to intercept him on the way. He [...] himſelf on Bloreheath, with ten thouſand troops, collected [...] C [...]ſhire and Shropſhire, who [...]e chieftains were diſtinguiſhed by ſilver ſwans, the badges of their young prince. Saluſbury, [...] the diſparity of numbers, determined to ſtand [...] of the day, but wiſely had recourſe to ſtratagem. He [...] at night on the banks of a rivulet, not broad, but [...] and in the morning pretended a retreat; Audley follow [...] him with the impetuous valor natural to himſelf and the [...] Saluſbury made an inſtant attack on the divided forces of [...]. The field was long diſputed, with the animo [...] [...] uſual in civil feuds, Audley ſell, with two thouſand four [...] of his troops, chiefly the flower of the Cheſhire gentry; [...] led them to the front of the battle. A great [...] marks the ſpot of their leader's death. The Queen fled [...] Caſtle. Saluſbury joined the Duke of York at Ludlow. [...] commemorates the ſlaughter of the day, and [Page 46] preſerves the names of the Cheſhire heroes; for the county liſten [...] both banners.

— The earl,
As hungry in revenge, there made a ravenous ſpoil.
There Du [...]ton, D [...]ton; kills; a Do [...]e doth kill a Done;
A B [...]th, a Do [...] and Leigh by Leigh is overthrown;
[...] againſt a [...] doth ſtand;
A Tr [...]beck fighteth with a Trcu [...]beck hand to hand;
There M [...]lineux doth make M [...]lineux to die;
And Egerton the ſtrength of Egerton doth try.

I RETURNED into the great road by Winnington forge and Wil [...] edge wells. The laſt were once in high eſteem for their fanative waters, ſtrongly impregnated. with ſulphur. They were formerly much frequented on account of bathing and drinking. A houſe for the reception of patients was built, and a bath incloſed, but it preſent the waters (which to look and caſte differ not from common) are entirely deſerted.

I RE-ENTERED the London road on Maer Heath, [Note: [...] ] in the pariſh of Maer, or M [...] ſo ſtiled from a large piece of water, the head of the r [...]ver Tern, which flowing through Shropſhire, falls into the [...] three miles below Shrewſbury. Maer and Aſton, an ad [...]ce [...] manor, were on the Conqueſt divided between William de Maer and Robert Stafford. Some centuries afterwards, a Stafford changed his part of Maer, with Ralph, the ſon of John M [...]esfield; by which it came into that family, who ſold it to John Lord Chetwynd.

THIS pariſh is remarkable for Saxon antiquities. On a hill is an antient [...]ortreſs or ſtrorng hold, [Note: [...] ] compoſed of two deep ditches and [...], formed chiefly of ſtone, the precinct not of any [Page 47] regular ſhape, for the foſſes conform to the ſhape of the hill; as [...] uſual with the Britons and the earlier Saxons. Two of the [...]ers project naturally, and form a ſpecies of baſtions. The [...]ance was on the ſide next the preſent road. The approach is very viſible: it crept up the ſteep ſides; divided [...] midway, one branch took to the left and the other to the [...] Near this place finiſhed his courſe Oſred, the licentious [...]ng of the Northumbrians; a deſpiſer of monks and corrupter of [...]ans [...]lain in battle in 716, at Mear, in the bloom of youth. [...] ſortreſs is called the Bruſſ, corruptly from Burgh. It ſeems [...] been caſt up by Kinred, king of Mercia, againſt the invaſion of the former. Kinred probably gave his antagoniſt the [...] funeral honors, and interred him, and his officers, with the reſpect due to their rank. Tumuli, or barrows, ſome round, [Note: BARROWS.] others oblong are ſcattered over the neighboring hills and heath. Un [...] the large conical hill, called Coplow, might, be depoſited the corpſe of Oſred; beneath the others, thoſe of his unfortunate followers. I muſt not paſs over in ſilence the Camp-hills, notwithſtanding the name has outlived the veſtiges of entrenchments; [...] does any tradition of the poſſeſſor remain. Shall we ſuppoſe [...] to be Oſred, who might have been there before his defeat?

THIS country is gravelly, full of commons and low hills, en [...]ly covered with heath; which ſtill give ſhelter to a few black [...] and red. The mention of the vegetable reminds me, [Note: HEATH [...]ED [...].] [...] a century ago it was ſometimes made uſe of inſtead [...] a practice continued to this day in ſome of the He [...].

[...] Hatton and Swinerton heaths. [Note: SWINERTON.] The laſt in a parish and [...] of the ſame name, owned, from the Conqueſt to the reign [Page 48] of Henry VIII. by the Swinertons. Their anceſtor was called [...] who held the eſtate from Robert de Stafford; who, at the time of the general ſurvey, poſſeſſed in this county alone eighty-one manors This family produced numbers of knights; and, among them, Roger de [...] had the honor of being ſummoned to parlement in the reign of Edward III. He ſeems to have been favored in thoſe reigns. In that of the firſt Edward [...] obtained free [...] for his manor, and got the privilege of a market and a fair to be held there. In the reign of Edward II. he was appointed governor of Stafford; afterwards, of the important caſtle of Ha [...]ch, in Marionethſhire; and was made conſtable of the Tower of London. In that of his ſucceſſor, beſides the honor above recited, he was made a bannere [...]; and had for his ſeveral ſervices as aſſignation out of the exchequer, of an hundred and forty-five pounds thirteen ſhillings and eight pence. In the reign of Henry VIII. this manor of Swinerton paſſed into the family of the Fitzherberts, by the marriage of the youngeſt daughter of H [...]y, left male heir of the line, to William Fitzherbert of Norbury; in which name it ſtill continues.

THE church, and [...]eat of Mr. Fitzherbert command a vaſt view into Worceſterſhire and Shropſhire. In the firſt is a tomb of a croſ-legged knight; and a plain altar-tomb, inſcribed Deminus de Swinerton & Ellen uxor ejur.

IN the ſchool-houſe is placed the coloſſal figure of our SAVIOUR, ſitting. He is repreſented as if after the reſurrection, ſhewing the wound in his ſide to the incredulous diſciple. It was found under ground, near the place it now occupies; and ſeems to have been buried in the reforming times, to preſerve it form the rage of the image-breakers.

[Page 49] [...] the houſe is a very fine full-length portrait of Sir John Fitz [...], Knight.

[...] deſcending a hill, I reached Darlaſton, [Note: DARLASTON.] a village on the [...] Near this place, on the ſummit of a hill, called Bury Bank, [...] area of an oval form, about 250 yards in diameter, envi [...]ed by a deep trench and ramparts: the entrance is on the north-weſt. On the ſouth part is a tumulus, ſurrounded with a [...] This I imagine to have been formed out of the ruins of ſome buildings, and to have been a ſort of praetorium to the occupier of this poſt. It is ſuppoſed to have been the reſidence of [...] who reigned over Mercia from 656 to 675. The old [...] W [...]ſereceſter in a manner confirms the opinion. Whether [...] neighboring Cop, or Low, was the place of his interment, as [...] drinks, is doubtful.

Hence I [...] meet with the Trent. This river riſes in the More [...] [...] Biddulph, out of Newpool, and two ſprings near Mole [...] [...] this place it is an inconſiderable ſtream, becomes navi [...] [...] Burton on Trent, and, after flowing through this county [...] it almoſt equally divides) that of Derby, Nottingham, and [...] it loſes its name in the Humber, the great receptacle of [...] rivers. Poets have taken moſt beautiful liberties in [...] [...]ologies of the name of this; for i [...] neither derives it [...] its thirty kinds of fiſh, nor yet from its thirty rivers that [...] waters.

The bounteous Trent, that in himſelf enſeams
Both thirty ſorts of fiſh, and thirty ſundry ſtreams.

AFTER quoting the ſublime deſcription of M [...]lon, we ſhall [...] ſimple derivation.

[Page 50]
[...] Feather the [...] a be the ſon
Of [...] or [...], or gulphy Dun,
[...] like [...] earth-born giant, ſpreads
[...] indented mends.

in [...] the name is [...], and for [...]ed from the word [...]ie, (three) on account [...] from three heads.

AFTER croſſing the river and aſcending a ſmall bank, [Note: STONEFIELD] I find myſelf in a vaſt open tract riſing to the left, called Stonefield Here, in 1745, the Duke of Comber [...]ed drew up his army, to give battle to the rebels, who were ſuppoſed to have been on their march this way. His intelligence failed him, and the Scotch inſurgents poſſeſſed themſelves of Derby. In future times poſ [...]erity will almoſt doubt the fact, when they read that an incons;iderable band of mountaineers, undiſciplined, unofficered, and half-armed, had penetrated into the center of an unfriendly [...], with one [...]my behind them, and another in their front: that they reſted there a few days; and that they retreated above three hundred miles, with ſcarcely any loſs, continually preſſes by a foe ſupplied with every advantage that loyalty could afford.

PARA [...]L to my road runs that magnificent enterprize the [...] for the junction of the eaſtern and and the weſtern oceans; [Note: [...] ] deſigned to give to each ſide of the kingdom an eaſy ſhare in the comm [...] [...] of both. In other countries, the nature of the land permits a ready execution of theſe deſigns. Egypt and Holland are levelled to the workmen's hands. Our aſpiring genius ſcoffs at obſtructions and difficulties ſerve but to what our ardor: our aqued [...] [...] over our once-admired rivers, now deſpiſed for the purpoſes of navigation: we fill vallies, we penetrate mountains. H [...] [Page 51] [...] the prophet have been treated, who, forty years ago, ſhould have predicted, that a veſſel of twenty-five tons would be ſeen [...] over Stonefield? Yet ſuch is the caſe ar preſent.

‘Figitur [...] viridi [...] fors [...] prato.’

[...] great enterprize was begun a July 17th 1766, near th [...] end of Hare-caſtle Hill, in this county. Its [...]nure length is [...] three miles, viz. ſixty-one miles two furlongs from the ſouth [...] of that hill to Wil [...], ferry, in the county of Derby; and [...]-one miles ſix furlongs on the north ſide, to its function with [...] Duke of Bridgewater's canal at Preſton on the Hill, in Che [...].

To affect this work, there we forty locks on the ſouth ſide; [...] in all three hundred and ſixteen feet fall; and on the north [...]-five, with three hundred and twenty-ſix feet fall. Six [...] ſouthern locks are fourteen feet wide adapted for the [...] of large veſſels, from, oppoſite to Burton to Gainſho [...] Midd [...], on the north ſide, is another, of the ſame [...].

THE common dimenſions of the canal are twenty-nine feet [...] at top; at bottom ſixteen; arid the depth four and a [...] in the part from W [...]de [...]. to Burton, which is thirty [...] at top, eighteen at bottom, and five and a half [...] The ſame is obſerved from Middlewich to Preſton on the [...] upon which veſſels, capable of navigating in the eſtuary of [...] may paſs to the port of Liverpool.

[...] is carried over the river Dove, in an aqueduct of [...] arches, and the ground raiſed one mile and two fur [...] and to a very conſiderable height, It is alſo [Page 52] [...] over the river [...], on an aqueduct of ſix arches, [...] twenty one feet ſpan each: and again over the river Dane [...] the ſame [...], on three [...] of twenty feet diameter.

BESIDES theſe there are near a hundred and ſixty leſſer [...] and [...], for the conveyance of brooks and [...] the canal many of which are in ſpan from twelve to eighteen feet.

THE undertakers, for the conveniency of the ſeveral perſons whoſe lands they have out though, or when the canal interfeers any public road, [...] built a [...] hundred and eighty-nine cartridges, and [...] fiit-bridges; and frequently, when the canal paſſes [...] of any gentleman's [...] have politely given it a [...], to improve me beauty of the proſpect.

[...] hills or rocks, that obstracted the canal [...] in the following places.

THE moſt [...] it is called, is at Hermits [...] of an hundred and thirty [...] horſes [...] and [...]de.

[...] through them [...] Caſtle is cut through [...] and was a [...] of [...] difficulty and [...] of the courage and [...]. In paſſes under [...] eight hundred and eighty yards [...] twenty [...] arches with [...].

[...] in the pariſh of Great Budworth, is [...] five hundred and ſixty yards long; as Saltenford, in [...] and fifty yards long [...] [Page 53] [...], at Preſton on the Hill is another, which paſſes under [...] twelve hundred and forty-one yards; each of them [...] feet four inches high, and thirteen feet ſix inches [...] that, at Preſton on the Hill it emerges, and ſoon con [...] [...] courſe, by falling into that formed by an uſeful Peer, [...] of Bridgewater which drops into the Merſey at Run [...] with a fall of eighty-two feet, eaſed by terv magnificent [...].

[...] Middlewide to Mancheſter is a dead level, which does [...] a look in all that ſpace.

[...] of this great work have employed on it about [...] excluſive of thoſe belonging to other perſons, which [...] left to the ſame number. They are calculated to [...] twenty-five tons each; are drawn by one horſe, for which [...] receive per mile three halfpence a ton.

[...] be ungrateful not to pay ſome reſpect to the memory [...] architect and contriver or theſe works, [Note: OF JAMES BRINDLEY.] Mr JAMES [...] rare genius was born at Tunſted, in the pariſh [...], in the year 1716. His father was a ſmall [...] himſelf by following the ſports of the [...] himſelf from giving his children any fort of [...].

[...] ſhewed very early the goodneſs of his-heart, by [...] familly be ſuch labore as he was ca [...] [...] he bound himſelf apprentice [...] Ma [...]field, when his amazing abilities were [...] He ſpeedily became a great proficient and per [...] [...] of things a which his maſter was totally ignorant [...] was equal to his genius; for he overpaid any [Page 54] inſtructions he might receive from his maſter, by maintaining [...] manner when, he [...] paſt working, and felt into [...].

THE firſt [...] the public received from him, was a [...] conſiderable improvement in the paper-preſs. He got great [...] water-engine at C [...]fro [...], in Lancaſhire; and [...] more [...] the machinery of new ſilk- [...] at [...], to which he gave many moſt imiportant movements. He highly [...] gr [...]ling [...] for the potteries and in 1756, erected [...] on a new plan, by which he reduced the conſumption of word to one half.

IT was a peculiar [...], to the Duke of BRIDGEWATER, to find a genius ſuch as Brindley, cotemporary to the great deſigns formed by his Grace. That wonderful mechanic [...] rally fell under the Duke's patronage, [...] was the grand con [...]ver of all the work which his noble friend carried on. Many of his projects were of ſo ſtupendous [...], and ſo incomprehenſible to vulgar maids, as to ſubject him to great ridicule, [...] were put [...] confuſion by the ſucceſsful execution.

[...] any great difficulty aroſe, be conſtantly took [...] bed, excluded all light and lay in meditation for two or three [...], all he had [...] completed whole of his plan. A [...] would have [...], he was viſited by his [...] in thoſe hours [...] certainly [...] [...]lumma [...], amidſt ſhe darkneſs by [...]. He reminds [...] ſimilar method: Clauſ [...]e ſe [...]eſtr [...] [...] [Page 55] [...] ſequor, qui cadem qu [...] mens [...]lent quoties non vi [...]. *

[...] [...]ound his health and faculties to decline, he virtu [...] [...] to extend as far as poſſible his ſervices, even grave. He communicated all his plans and deſigns [...], his wife's brother, who had been employed [...], from the beginning, as clerk of the works. [...] and [...] ſeem to have compenſated for the loſs [...] for the moſt difficult parts in the undertaking [...] ſucceſſfully executed, ſince Mr. Brindley's death , un [...] direction of M [...]. Henſhall.

[...] the clamors which have been raiſed againſt to undertaking, in the places through which it was, intended [...] when ii was firſt projected we have the pleaſure now to [...] reign univerſally on its banks, and plenty attend its [...] cottage inſtead of being half covered with mi [...] is now ſecured with a ſubtaintial covering of tiles [...] brought from the diſtant hills of Wales or Cumberland. [...] which before were barren, are now drained, and, by [...] of man [...], conveyed on the canal toll-free, are [...] with a beautiful endore. Places which rarely knew the [...] plentifully ſupplied with that eſſential article upon [...] and what is [...] of greater public utility, the [...] corn are prevented from exerciſing their infa [...] [...], for, the communication being opened between Liver [...] [...] and Hall line of the canal being through [Page 56] [...] [Page 57] [...] [Page 58] [...] [Page 59] [...] [Page 59] countries abundant in grain, it affords a conveyance of corn unknown to paſt ages. At preſent, nothing but a general dearth can create a ſcarcity in any part adjacent to this extenſive work.

THESE, and many other advantages, are derived, both to individuals and the public, from this internal navigation. But when it happens that the kingdom is engaged in a foreign war, with what ſecurity is the trade between thoſe three great ports carried on; and with how much leſs expence has the trader his goods conveyed to any part of the kingdom, than he had formerly been ſubject to, when the goods were obliged to be carried coaſtways, and to pay inſurance?

I BELIEVE it may be aſſerted, that no undertaking, equally expenſive and arduous, was ever attempted by private people in any kingdom; and, in juſtice to the adventurers, it muſt be allowed, that, conſidering the difficulties they met with, owing to the nature of the works, or the caprice of perſons whoſe lands were taken to make the canal, that ten years and a half was but a ſhort time to perform it in; and that ſatisfaction has been made to every individual who ſuffered any injury by the execution of the undertaking. The profits ariſing from tonnage is already very conſiderable; and there is no doubt but they will increaſe annually; and, notwithſtanding the enormous ſum of money it has coſt in the execution, the proprietors will be amply repaid, and have the comfort to reflect, that, by the concluſion of this project, they have contributed to the good of their country, and acquired wealth for themſelves and poſterity.

IMMEDIATELY after leaving Stonefield, [Note: STONE] reached the little town of Stone, a place remarkable for religious antiquity. Legend tells [Page 57] us, that the before-mentioned Wulferus, then a Pagan, put to death his two ſons, Wulfad and Rufin, on ſuſpicion of favoring the Chriſtian faith; Wulfad at this place, Rufin at Burſton, about three miles diſtant. Over each, ſtones were erected, as uſual, in memory of the dead; from whence the names of thoſe places are derived. Wulfere, after this unnatural deed, was ſtruck with the utmoſt remorſe, and, by the influence of his queen and St. Cedda, or Chad, who lived in a neighboring hermitage, was converted to the religion he had ſo lately perſecuted; and, by way of expiating his guilt, among other works of piety, founded at Stone a college of canons regular, [Note: COLLEGE.] about the year 670. His queen Ermenilda is ſaid to have alſo founded a nunnery here. On the invaſion of the Danes, the religious were diſperſed; but on the abatement of the cruelty of thoſe barbarians, it is probable they returned, or at left a new eſtabliſhment was formed. This is certain, that religious were found here after the Conqueſt; for there is an idle tale of two nuns and a prieſt being ſlain there, by Enyſan, a Norman. This Enyſan, of Walton, was the true re-founder. Caution muſt be uſed in reading the hiſtories of theſe times, which are filled with pious romance. Little credit ſhould alſo be given to the murder of the ſons of Wulfere. The Saxon Chronicle is ſilent about the deed. That prince was a convert to Chriſtianity, and ſeems to have founded the houſe through the common motives of zeal.

Enyſan, on his re-eſtabliſhment of this houſe, filled it with canons from Kenelworth, [Note: PRIORY.] and made it a cell to that place. The Staffords, who were his ſuperiors, aſſumed the honor of this new foundation; and a ſecond Robert de Stafford, about the year 1260, rendered it free from Kenelworth, excepting the right of patronage, [Page 58] and a yearly penſion. The church of this priory was the place of interment of ſeveral of this great family; and numbers of magnificent tombs, with their figures in alabaſter, lay there till the diſſolution; when they were removed to the Auguſtines, on Stafford Green. I ſee on the road-ſide a fragment of a thick wall, perhaps a remnant of the priory. The church is quite new, and is a very elegant building, dedicated to St. Wulfad, one of the ſuppoſed martyrs. At the time of the ſuppreſſion, a tablet, giving the whole hiſtory of the houſe, was hung up in the priory: it is related in old Engliſh metre; but is ſo tedious, that I muſt refer the readers, who deſire to peruſe it, to the cited author. *

As ſoon as I left Stone, [Note: ASTON.] I ſaw on the right a large houſe called Aſton, originally the property of a branch of the Heveninghams of Suffolk. Walter, the laſt of the line, left two daughters; the ſecond (who only had children) conveyed by marriage the eſtate to Sir James Simeon, who rebuilt the hall. He alſo built in the garden a mauſoleum; in which, I think, he is interred. The place is at preſent the property of Edward Weld, Eſquire, of Lulworth caſtle, in Dorſetſhire, and deſcended to him of late years, by virtue of a marriage of an anceſtor with a daughter of this houſe, in the reign of Charles II.

THE road from this place, [Note: BURSTON.] for ſeveral miles, paſſes along a pretty vale, watered by the Trent, bounded by two hills, and much enlivened by the courſe of the canal. About the third mile from Stone, I went by Burſton, a ſmall hamlet, noted formerly for a chapel erected over the ſpot where Rufin, ſecond ſon of Wulfere, was ſuppoſed to have been martyred; and on that account, in old times, greatly frequented by the devout.

ABOUT a quarter of a mile from hence, on the top of a hill, [Page 59] ſtands the church of Sandon. [Note: SANDON.] This manor, in the twentieth of William the Conqueror, was in the hands of the king; who beſtowed it on Hugh Lupus; and he again gave it to William de Malbanc, or Nantwich. It paſſed from this family (by the gift of Adena, eldeſt daughter of William, grandſon to the former) to Warren de Verdon; and by his daughter Alditha, to Sir William Stafford; and by the marriage of Margaret, daughter of one of his deſcendants, in the twelfth of Edward III. to Thomas of Erdeſwik. It continued in poſſeſſion of that family till the reign of James I. In his time it was ſold to George Digby, groom of the ſtole to that monarch, by his half-brother Richard Erdeſwik. Charles Lord Gerard, of Bromley, became maſter of it, by marriage with a daughter of Mr. Digby; whoſe grand-daughter, by matching with William Duke of Hamilton, conveyed it to Lord Archibald Hamilton; who, in 1776, diſpoſed of it to Lord Harrowby. A law-ſuit concerning this place gave riſe to the fatal duel, in November 1712, between James Duke of Hamilton and Lord Mohun; in which both combatants loſt their lives.

THE antient manſion ſtood near the church, within a moat; but is now demoliſhed, and a beautiful houſe, commanding a fine view, was built by Lord Archibald Hamilton, on an eminence impending over the Cheſter road. The ſteep ſlope is beautiful, cloathed with plantations of recent date, but extremely flouriſhing.

THE church is in the gift of Lord Harrowby. Before the diſſolution, it belonged to the abbey of Cumbermere; being beſtowed on it by the founder, Hugh de Malbanc.

THE monuments are curious. The fineſt is in memory of the celebrated Sampſon Erdeſwik, the learned antiquary of the county; [Page 60] a faithful guide of all that concerned the families, till his death, which happened in 1603. He might have ſpared himſelf the expence of a monument; his work would have perpetuated his name. He erected one in his life-time; and is repreſented recumbent, a coloſſal figure in a jacket with ſhort ſkirts, and ſpurs on his legs. Above, in two niches, are his two wives, kneeling: the one was Elizabeth Dikeſwel; the other Maria Neale, widow to Sir Everard Digby, and mother to the unfortunate victim to the gunpowder plot. Beſides inſcriptions to theſe ladies, is a pedigree of the houſe; for which, as well as ſeveral other epitaphs of the Erdeſwiks, the reader is referred to the Appendix. I ſhall only mention, that the tombs are of the altar-form, and have the figures of the perſons commemorated engraved on the ſtone.

THE inſcription on a plain marble tomb, in memory of Mr. Digby, [Note: OF GRORGE DIGBY.] once owner of the place, is very worthy of preſervation: as it records a remarkable piece of hiſtory, I ſhall give it here at length, and add notes to the obſcure parts.

Si quis hic jaceat, roges, viator,

Georgius Digbaeus,

Armiger.

Vir (ſi quis alius) celebrati nominis.

Nobili clarus proſapiâ, ſed vita nobiliori:

Quippe qui

Ipſum nobilitatis fontem caeno turbatum

Demum limpidum reddidit:

Hoc eſt

Ut memet explicem,

[Page 61] Qui regis Jacobi purpuram

Maledicti Schopii * dicterici ſoedatam

Obtrectatoris ſanguine

Retinxit.

Nec tamen homuncionem penitús ſuſtulit

Sed gravius ſtigma fronti incuſſit

Quàm Henricus magnus

Libello ,

Quo ſcilicet toto vitae curriculo

(Utpote omnium contemptui expoſitus)

Senſit ſe mori.

Hujus egregii facinoris intuitu

A Jacobo honoribus auctus eſt

Digbaeus

Meritis tandem anniſque plenus

[Page 62] Vivere deſiit, ſemper victurus.

Ipſis Idibus Decembris ao. [...] Aetatis ſuae LXXXVI.

Tanti herois laudes

Licet non taceant hiſtorici

Haec ſaxa loqui curavit

Lectiſſima heroina Jana Baroniſſa Gerrard

De Bromley,

Clariſſimi Digbaei filia

Superſtes unica.

FROM Sandon the hills recede to the north. I directed my courſe to Chartley, [Note: CHARTLEY.] about four miles and a half diſtant, and about three north from the great road. This venerable pile is built round a court, and great part of it curiouſly made of wood, embattled at top, and the ſides carved. In many places are the arms of the Devereux; the devices of the Ferrars and Garniſhes; and, in Saxon characters, the initials of the founder, W. D. (Walter Devereux) with the motto Loial ſuis je. Over the door of the gateway is carved a head in profile, with a crown above. In the middle of the court ſtands a fountain: and the whole building is ſurrounded with a moat. The view within the court is faithfully ſhewn in Plot, tab. v.

IN ſeveral of the windows are painted glaſs. In the great bow-window of the hall are the horſe-ſhoes, the antient device of the Ferrars; in others, the arms of that family, the Devereux, Garniſhes, and Shirlies. A bed is ſtill preſerved here, the work of Mary Stuart, who was for ſome time impriſoned in this houſe: beſides this, at preſent there are no veſtiges of its former grandeur. [Page 63] Within and without is a mortifying appearance of neglect and approaching decay *.

AT a ſmall diſtance from the houſe, on a knowl, are the poor remains of the caſtle; [Note: CASTLE.] conſiſting of the fragments of two rounders, and a bit of a wall, almoſt hid in wood. This fortreſs was very ſoon permitted to fall in decay. Leland ſpeaks of it as a ruin in his days. When the power of the nobility was broken, by the policy of Henry VII. numbers of the barons, finding their caſtle no longer a protection to their inſolence, were glad to quit ſo incommodious a kind of habitation. We often ſee, as in the preſent inſtance, an antient manſion near the remains, or on the ſcite of a more antient caſtle: the times were ſo much bettered, and monarchy had recovered ſo much rightful ſtrength, that the former became uſeleſs againſt; their prince, or their rival reguli, who then began to acknowlege the power of law. Yet ſtill ſome ſpecies of caſtellated manſion, againſt popular commotions, or the attacks of bands of robbers, was requiſite. Conveniency, and a ſort of elegance, was affected in their houſes; but a neceſſary ſuſpicion ſtill remained, and ſafety provided for by the deep ſurrounding moat, by the gateway, and the ſtrong door.

Chartley caſtle was built by Randle Blundeville, Earl of Cheſter, in 1220, on his return from the Holy Land; and to defray the expences of this, as alſo of Beeſton, which he alſo founded, a tax was levied on all his vaſſals. By his death, this part of his eſtate devolved on William Ferrars Earl of Derby, in right of his wife Agnes, third ſiſter of Randle.

His ſon Robert, entering into the factious views of the barons, received a defeat at Cheſterfield in 1266. His eſtates were confiſcated, and the caſtle and manor beſtowed by Henry III. on Hamon [Page 64] Le Strange; but, notwithſtanding this, he poſſeſſed himſelf of it by force, and the king was obliged to order his brother, Edmund Earl of Lancaſter, to beſiege the place; which he took, but not till after much loſs on both ſides. Edmund, and the nobility who aſſiſted in the ſiege, thought proper to obtain his majeſty's pardon for the lives loſt on the occaſion. Ferrars himſelf received his pardon, was diveſted of the earldom of Derby, but was ſuffered to retain this caſtle; poſſibly, being reduced ſo low as to be incapable of giving farther disturbance. It continued in his line till the reign of Henry VI. when, in 1447, by the marriage of Anne, or Agnes, ſole heireſs to William Lord Ferrars, to Walter Devereux, ſheriff of Herefordſhire, it paſſed into another great race of peers. The lady was at that time only eleven years and eight months old; but by the king's ſpecial favor, in 1452, ſhe had livery of her lands, without further proof of her age. This eſtate continued in his poſterity (the Lords Ferrars, Viſcounts Hereford, and Earls of Eſſex) till the year 1646, when it fell to Sir Robert Shirley, by his marriage with Dorothy, youngeſt ſiſter to Robert Earl of Eſſex, the noted parlement-general; and is at preſent poſſeſſed by their deſcendant Earl Ferrers.

IN hopes of finding, [Note: STOW CHURCH.] in the neighboring pariſh-church of Stow, the monumental honors uſually attendant on great families, I viſited it, at the ſmall trouble of a mile's ride. I was diſappointed; for I found only, one of this great line depoſited in the place. This is very frequent with a race of heroes, whoſe active ſpirits carry them into ſcenes remote from their natal ſoil, or bring themſelves to fates that prevent poſſeſſion of their parental ſepulchres. Walter Devereux, the firſt Lord Ferrars, fell in the field of Boſworth, fighting valiantly in behalf of Richard, and was [Page 65] buried among the undiſtinguiſhed ſlain. Walter, his deſcendant, firſt Earl of Eſſex, died Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, September 22d. 1576, as ſuppoſed by poiſon, and was interred at Caermarthen. His ſon, the favorite of Elizabeth, fell a victim to his indiſcretion and ambition; periſhed by the ax, and was flung among the attainted herd. His ſon, for a ſeries of victories in the cauſe of liberty, received from his grateful party the magnificent honors of a public funeral in the capital, which his arms had defended.

I FOUND here only the tomb of Walter, firſt Viſcount Hereford, grandſon of the firſt Lord Ferrers, and founder of the houſe of Chartley. He ſerved with honor in the French wars, under Henry VIII; and in the naval attack of Conquet, in 1512, he was honored with the garter by his royal maſter, and with the title of Hereford by his ſucceſſor. His death happened in 1558. He lies here under a fine monument, erected in his life-time; his figure is repreſented in robes, with the collar of the garter round his neck: his head repoſed on a plume of feathers, wreathed round a helmet. On one ſide of him is placed his firſt lady, Mary, daughter of Thomas Marquis of Dorſet; on the other, his ſecond, Margaret, daughter of Robert Garnyche, Eſquire, of Kyngeton, in Suffolk. Around the ſide is repreſented, I ſuppoſe as mourners, ſix female and ſix male figures; the laſt begirt with ſwords.

NEAR this is another tomb of alabaſter, with the figures of two perſons engrav [...]n on it; but ſo cankered with age, that neither inſcription nor diſtinction of ſex, can be made out.

ON the chancel floor a braſs plate preſerves the memory of Thomas Newport, ſteward of the houſhold to Walter, firſt Earl of Eſſex, and delivers his character in theſe terms:

[Page 66]
Qui charus charis fuerat qui firmus amicis;
En! Thomas Newport conditur hoc tumulo.
Qui felix ortu ſuit et morta beatus;
Quem Deus et coelum, quem pia vota habent.

FROM Stow I haſtened to the Cheſter road, [Note: WYCH WESTON.] which I reached at the hamlet of Wych, in the pariſh of Weſton on the Trent, whoſe ſpire ſteeple appears at a ſmall diſtance on the other ſide of the road. This place is productive of ſalt, and has been long noted: for its brine-pits, the property of Earl Ferrers.

AFTER going about two miles farther, [Note: HEYWOOD.] I paſſed through Great Heywood, a village beſtowed by Roger de Melend, alias Long Epee, a worthleſs prelate, in the reign of Henry III. on his valet Roger de Aſton; whoſe family made it their reſidence, till the marriage of a deſcendant with the heireſs of Tixal, occaſioned it to remove to the new acquiſition. In my memory the old ſeat was in poſſeſſion of the Whitbies. It has ſince been re-united to the houſe of Tixal, by purchaſe. The barn belonging to the manor-houſe of Heywood, was of a moſt magnificent ſize; but of late has been greatly reduced.

THE horſe-bridge over the Trent, [Note: ITS LONG BRIDGE.] adjoining to Heywood, was not leſs remarkable, for I remember it to have conſiſted of two-and-forty arches; but the number at preſent is much leſſened. There is a tradition, that it was built by the county, in a compliment to the laſt Devereux Earl of Eſſex, who reſided much at Chartley; and, being a keen ſportſman, was often-deprived of his diverſion for want of one. I am not clear about the truth, of this report. There certainly had been a bridge here long before, ſo that, if there was any foundation for ſuch a mark of reſpect, it could only have been rebuilt after falling to decay.

Figure 1. SHUGBOROUGH.

[Page 67] FROM the middle is a view, of very uncommon beauty, [Note: VALE OF SHUGBOROUGH.] of a ſmall vale, varied with almoſt every thing that nature or art could give to render it delicious; rich meadows, watered by the Trent and Sow. The firſt, animated with milk-white cattle, emulating thoſe of Tinian; the laſt with numerous ſwans. The boundary on one ſide, is a cultivated ſlope; on the other, the lofty front of Cannock Wood, clothed with heath; or ſhaded with old oaks, ſcattered over its glowing bloom by the free hand of nature.

IT is more difficult to enumerate the works of art diſperſed over this Elyſium; they epitomize thoſe of ſo many places. The old church of Colwich; the manſion of the antient Engliſh baron, at Welſely Hall; the great-windowed mode of building in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, in the houſe of Ingeſtre; the modern ſeat in Oak-edge; and the lively improved front of Shugborough; are embelliſhments proper to our own country. Amidſt theſe ariſe the genuine architecture of China, in all its extravagance; the dawning of the Grecian, in the mixed gothic gateway at Tixal; and the chaſte buildings of Athens, exemplified by Mr. Stuart, in the counterparts of the Choragic monument of Lyſicrates, * and the octagon tower of Andronicus Cyrrheſtes. From the ſame hand aroſe, by command of a grateful brother, the arch of Adrian of Athens, embelliſhed with naval trophies, in honor of Lord Anſon, a glory to the Britiſh fleet; and who ſtill ſurvives in the gallant train of officers who remember and emulate his actions. My much reſpected friend, the late Thomas Anſon, Eſquire, preferred, [Page 68] the ſtill paths of private life, and was the beſt qualified for its enjoyment of any man I ever knew; for with a moſt humane and the moſt ſedate diſpoſition, he poſſeſſed a mind moſt uncommonly cultivated. He was the example of true taſte in this country; and at the time that he made his own place a paradiſe, made every neighbor partaker of its elegancies. He was happy in his life, and happy in his end. I ſaw him about thirty hours before his death, liſtening calmly to the melody of the harp, preparing for the momentary tranſit from an earthly concert to an union with the angelic harmonies. The unfiniſhed improvements are carried on with great judgment, by his worthy nephew and ſucceſſor George Anſon, Eſquire.

AMONG the great number of ſtatues which embelliſh the place, an Adonis and Thalia are the moſt capital. There is alſo a very fine figure of Trajan, in the attitude of haranguing his army. The number of rude Etruſcan figures in the garden, ſhew the extravagance of the earlieſt ages, and the great antiquity of the art of ſculpture in Italy, long before the Romans became, a people. The beautiful monument in the lower end of the garden, does honor to the preſent age. It was the work of Mr. Schemecher, under the direction of the late Mr. Anſon. The ſcene is laid in Arcadia. Two lovers, expreſſed in elegant paſtoral figures, appear attentive to an antient ſhepherd, who reads to them an inſcription on a tomb,

Et in AZCABIA ego!

Figure 2. TEMPLE of the WINDS at SHUGBOROUGH.

OPPOSITE to the back-front of the houſe, on the banks of the Sow, ſtand the ſmall remains of the antient manſion, which, according to Leland, originally belonged to Suckborrow with a long heard, and who, as ſome ſay, gave it to the mitre of Lichfield. It muſt have been in very early times; for the manor of Haywood (in which this is included) belonged to the ſee in 1085, the twentieth of William the Conqueror, and ſo continued till the reign of Edward VI. who beſtowed it on Lord Paget. The houſe was till that time one of the palaces of the biſhops. The reliques, at preſent, ſerve to give the appearance of reality of ruin to ſome beautiful Grecian columns, and other fragments of antient architecture; which were tacked to the front by the late Mr. Anſon.

Shugborough was frequently the houſe I had the happineſs of making my head-quarters: from whence I made many an excurſion to the neighboring places. I beg the reader's pardon for indulging myſelf with a recollection of what formerly gave me ſo much pleaſure in the ſurvey, and for detaining him with the account of a ſhort circuit, rich in objects.

I SHALL croſs the Sow, and begin with Tixal, [Note: TIXAL.] diſtinguiſhed at preſent only by the magnificent gateway, a motley pile of Gothic and Grecian architecture, embelliſhed in front with three ſeries of

[...]

[Page 72] AT a very little diſtance from this heath lies Ingeſtre, [Note: INGESTRE.] or Ingeſtrent, a reſpectable old houſe, ſeated on the eaſy ſlope of a hill, and backed by a large wood, filled with antient oaks of vaſt ſize: this makes part of the pleaſure-ground. The walks are partly bounded by enormous hedges of foreſt-trees, and partly wander into the antient wood, beneath the ſhade of the venerable trees.

THIS manor, about the time of Henry II. was the property of Eudo de Mutton; in the reign of Edward III. it was transferred to the family of the Chetwynds, by the marriage of Iſabel, daughter of Philip de Mutton, with Sir John de Chetwynd; in which line it continues, being at preſent owned by John Chetwynd Talbot, Eſquire, grandſon of John Lord Chetwynd.

THE houſe is built in the ſtile of the reign of Elizabeth, with great windows in the center, and a bow on each ſide: the laſt are of ſtone, the reſt of the houſe brick. In the great hall, over the fire-place, is a very good picture of Walter Chetwynd, Eſquire, in a great wig, and croſſed by a rich ſaſh. This gentleman was diſtinguiſhed by his vaſt knowlege in the antiquities of his country, [Note: CHURCH.] and more ſo by his piety. The preſent church of Ingeſtre was rebuilt by him, and was conſecrated in Auguſt 1677. A ſermon was preached, prayers read, a child baptized, a woman churched, a couple married, a corpſe buried, the ſacraments adminiſtred, and, to crown all, Mr. Chetwynd made an offering on the altar of the tythes of Hopton, worth fifty pounds a year, to be added to the rectory for ever. The church is very neat, and is prettily ſtuccoed. In it is a mural monument, in memory of its great benefactor, who died in 1692.

Hopton Heath lies on the ſide of Ingeſtre Park, [Note: HOPTON HEATH SKIRMISH.] and is noted for [Page 73] a ſkirmiſh between a party of the King's forces, under the Earl [...] Northampton, and another of the parlement's, commanded by [...] William Brereton and Sir John Gell. Victory, notwithſtanding [...] great inequality of numbers, declared itſelf on the ſide of the [...]yaliſts; but it was purchaſed at ſo dear a rate, that, as Lord [...]arendon expreſſes, a great victory had been an unequal recom [...]ence for the loſs ſuſtained in the General. The earl fell in the [...]tion, neglected by his troops, buſied in the purſuit; and left en [...]oned by enemies. He flew his firſt aſſailants, and died valiantly, [...]fuſing the offered quarter.

AFTER riding from Ingeſtre three miles, through very bad roads, [...]eached Stafford, a good town, [Note: STAFFORD.] containing about five thouſand [...]habitants, ſeated on a plain, bounded by riſing grounds at a [...]ry ſmall diſtance. The ſtreets in general are well built; the [...]arket-place large, ornamented with a handſome town-hall, with [...]e windows in front: it is built upon pillars, and preſents a [...]cade with ſix arches, intercolumniated with Ionic pilaſters. [...]is is the county-town; and here the aſſizes are appointed to [...] held, by a ſtatute of the firſt of Elizabeth.

THE county infirmary lies at a ſmall diſtance from the town, [Note: INFIRMARY.] [...]a good plain building; was finiſhed in 1772, and is ſupported [...] an annual ſubſcription of between eight and nine hundred [...]ear.

Stafford conſiſts of but a ſingle pariſh, [Note: CHURCHES.] with two churches. That [...] St. Mary is a rectory, in the gift of the king; a large building [...]th an octagon tower, and formerly with a lofty ſpire riſing from Here is to be ſeen the tomb of Sir Edward Aſton, the builder Tixal; who died in 1567, and Joan his wife. Their figures are preſented in alabaſter, under a large canopy.

[Page 74] THE font is a ſingular piece of antiquity: very clumſy; but the ſides and baſe moſt ſingularly carved into rude Gothic figures.

THIS church had been collegiate, and was given, a little before the year 1136, by King Stephen, to the biſhop and chapter of Lichfield and Coventry. The patronage was granted, in 1445, by Henry VI. to Humphrey Duke of Buckingham. It was of exempt juriſdiction, and conſiſted, in the twenty-ſixth of Henry VIII. of a [...]ean and thirteen prebendaries *. The dean's houſe ſtood at the veſe end of the church, and ſerves at preſent for the ſchool.

THE religious houſes were the Grey Friars, [Note: RELIGIOUS HOUSES.] or Franciſcans, at the north end of the walls, founded, according to Erdeſwik, by Sir James Stafford of Sandon. It was valued at £35. 13s. 10d. per annum, and granted in the thirty-firſt of Henry VIII. to James Leveſon.

THE FRIERS AUSTINS had a piece of ground given them on the green, at the ſouth end of the town, by Ralph Lord Stafford. in order to found a houſe, about the year 1344, for his own ſoul's ſake, thoſe of his wives (Katharine and Margaret) Sir Humphrey Haſtings, Knight, and that of Edward III. The tomb of his great line were removed to this church from Stone, at the diſſolution, but ſoon ſuffered to periſh. It was granted, in the [...] of Queen Mary, to Thomas Neve and Giles Iſam.

A PRIORY of black canons, founded by Richard Peche, biſhop of Lichfield and Covenery, about the year 1180; as others ſay, by Gevard Stafford, on land which he held from the biſhop, whom [...] complimented with the title of founder . The prelate had [Page 75] a great affection for this houſe; for, on reſigning his ſee, he became a canon of it: and here ended his days *. It maintained only ſeven religious, whoſe revenues were £198 a year. On the [...]tion it was granted to Rowland Lee, biſhop of Lichfield.

BESIDES theſe, were two hoſpitals, and the free chapel of Saint Nu [...]as. in the caſtle.

THE town was defended partly by the river Sow, [Note: FORTIFICATIONS.] which bounds one half of it; the reſt was guarded by a wall, and by a ditch, ſupplied by the river with water. It had formerly four gates; of theſe two are yet ſtanding. The place never was defencible; at laſt ever ſtood a ſiege. Sir William Brereton, the parlement general, took it by ſurprize, in May 1643, with the loſs only of a ſingle man.

THE origin of Stafford is very uncertain: the firſt name of it is led to be Betheney, [Note: ORIGIN OF STAFFORD.] and that it had been the ſeat of an hermit called Bertelin, in high fame for his ſanctity. The earlieſt au [...]hentic mention of the place is in the year 913, when Ethelfleda Counteſs of Mercia, and ſiſter of Edward the Elder, built a caſtle her [...]. This lady had one child by her lord Ethelred; when, ba [...]ing the pangs of parturition with the joys of connubial rites, [...]azon like, ſhe determined to forbear for the future all commerce with him. From thenceforth her delight was in arms, in conqueſts, and in ſecuring her dominions. Such was her proweſs, that laying aſide all feminine titles, ſhe received that of King, as if Counteſs and Queen were inadequate to her heroiſm

[Page 76] THE ſcite of this fortreſs is not preciſely known. Doctor Plot is of opinion, that it lay within the entrenchments at Billington, at ſome diſtance from Stafford, and ſeems to found his conjecture from the lands wherein they are being ſtill a remaining part of the demeſne land of the barony of Stafford *. Cambden attributes a tower to Edward the Elder, founded in the year after that which was built by his ſiſter, and places it on the north ſide of the river. A mount ſtill remains near the new bridge, called by Speed, Caſtle-hill; at preſent named Bullyhill, on which it probably ſtood.

THE poor remains of the caſtle, [Note: CASTLE.] which was garriſoned in the civil wars, ſtand on a little inſulated hill, a mile ſouth from the town. The keep was on an artificial mount: the whole is ſurrounded with a deep foſs, which, on the ſouth ſide, has beſides the additional ſtrength of a high rampart. This was founded by William the Conqueror, and was ſoon after demoliſhed. It is ſuppoſed that during the time it ſtood, the cuſtody of it was committed to Robert de Tonei, younger ſon of Roger, ſtandard-bearer of Normandy, a follower of the Conqueror, who took from this circumſtance the name of Stafford. It is conjectured, that the king at that time reſerved this manor to himſelf, and that it was not included in the vaſt grant made by him to Robert, of eighty-one manors in this county, twenty-ſix in that of Warwick, twenty in Lincolnſhire, two in Suffolk, and one in each of thoſe of Worceſter and Northampton. It appears that it continued in the crown till the ſecond of Edward II. when Edmund Lord Stafford received the grant, and held it in capite by barony, together with that of Bradeley and Madeley, by ſervice, of finding for forty days, at his [Page 77] own charge, three armed men, with three equis coopertis, horſes harneſſed for war, as often as there ſhould be war with Wales or Scotland. * I do not affirm for certain the reſtorer of this caſtle. Mr. Erdeſwic ſays, it was Ralph de Stafford, a diſtinguiſhed warrior, cotemporary with Edward III. It was garriſoned by the king in the laſt civil wars; was taken by the parlement forces, and demoliſhed in 1644.

ABOUT a quarter of a mile ſouth of the caſtle, in a low ſituation, [Note: MANOR-HOUSE.] ſtood the manor-houſe of the family, fortified by the ſame Ralph; for I find from Dugdale, that he had permiſſion, in 1348, to make caſtles of his manor-houſes at Stafford and Madeley. This great family had in it barons, earls, and dukes; and in the year 1637 became extinct: at that time humiliated into barens again. The moat of their antient reſidence is ſtill to be ſeen, ſurrounding a rectangular piece of ground, the ſcite of the houſe.

My curioſity led me about two miles further, to Billington, [Note: BILLINGTON BURY.] to examine the ſuppoſed ſcite of the antient Stafford caſtle. Near the extremity of a high hill, ſteeply ſloping on three ſides, and commanding a moſt extenſive and beautiful view, I found a large ſea, ſurrounded in ſome parts with one, in others with two, deep foſſes. This had been a Britiſh poſt, as it agrees with thoſe we find in many parts of the kingdom; but as it retains the name of Billington Bury, it probably might have been occupied by the Saxons, whoſe poſts are diſtinguiſhed by the addition of Borough, Bury, and Berry.

THE town of Stafford is governed by a mayor, recorder, ten aldermen, and twenty common-council-men; and was incorporated [Page 78] in the third of Edward VI. It firſt ſent burgeſſes to parlement in 1294, the twenty-third of Edward I. They are elected by inhabitants paying ſcot and lot, and are returned by the mayor *.

THE borough ſtill retains one antient cuſtom, [Note: BOROUGH.] the privilege of borough Engliſh, or the deſcent of lands, within its liberty, to the youngeſt ſons of thoſe who die inteſtate: an uſage which is ſuppoſed to have been originally founded on the preſumption, that the younger child was the moſt incapable of providing for itſelf.

THE barony was, [Note: BARONY.] even at the Conqueſt, one of the greateſt in England, and afterwards, like other great ſeigniories, ſtiled the Honor of Stafford. None were ſuch originally, but which were royal; but were afterwards beſtowed in ſee on ſome nobleman, as proved the caſe with this, as mentioned in page 76; when it was given to Edmund Lord Stafford, with eighty-one dependent manors, with ſixty knights ſees, viz. nine in his demeſne, and fifty-one in ſervice.

AFTER leading the town, I croſſed the Wolverhampton Navigation at Redford Bridge. This may be called a port to Stafford. A little further is Weeping Croſs, ſo ſtiled from its vicinity to the antient place of execution. A little farther on, opens the rich view of the vale of Shugborough, varied with rivers and canals, and bordered with the ſeveral ſeats before deſcribed.

[Note: CANK WOOD.] ON approaching Cank Wood, [Note: HEYWOOD PARK.] I find on its confines Heywood Park; a ſmall houſe, the property of Lord Paget, remarkable for [Page 79] the beautiful woody dingles that wind into the ſides of the foreſt. When I was wandering through them, I imagined myſelf engaged in thoſe of my native country. Here I ſuppoſe to have been the park of red deer, which Leland ſays the biſhop of Lichfield had in his manor of Shugborow. I ſkirted part of the wood, which here ends boldly, almoſt driving the traveller into the Sow. This front has received from Mr. Anſon a wonderful change. ‘Miraturque novas frondes.’

Pines inſtead of oaks; which, waving over the head of the paſſenger, would recall to his memory, had he been abroad, the idea of many an alpine ſcene.

RETURNING over Heywood bridge, I paſſed through the two hamlets of that name; and within two miles of the firſt, reached the church and village of Colwich. I muſt imagine the traveller, [Note: COLWICH.] as well as myſelf, blinded, if we rode this ſpace inſenſible of the moſt elegant view of the vale. It is perfectly prodigal in its beauties, and ſpreads at once every charm that can captivate the eye. It ſhews here at once, all that I before mentioned en detail.

THE parſonage and church of Colwich contribute to the variety of the view, from another ſtation: both are antient. This place had been the property of a family of the ſame name *, at le [...]t from Henry III's reign to about the beginning of Elizabeth; when it paſſed into that of Leiceſter of Tabley, in Cheſhire, by the marriage of the daughter of Edward Colwich to Peter Leiceſter, Eſquire.

The church is dedicated to St. Michael, [Note: CHURCH.] and is a prebend in [Page 78] [...] [Page 79] [...] [Page 80] the cathedral of Lichfield. Within is a tomb, with the recumbent figure, dreſſed in a gown, of Sir William Wolſely. Here is alſo the burial-place of the Anſons, made a l'antique, in form of a catacomb. I muſt not forget an inſcription, in memory of another Sir William Wolſely, which does not commemorate his unlucky and ſingular end; being drowned in his chariot, on the 8th of July 1728, by the accidental breaking of a mill-dam, in the village of Longdon, by a thunder-ſhower. His four horſes periſhed. The coachman was ſaved, being carried by the torrent into an orchard, where he ſtuck till the water abated.

[Note: BISHTON.] AT a little diſtance from Colwich is Biſhton, [Note: WOLSLEY BRIDGE.] near which I croſs the navigation again, and inſtantly after the Trent, at Wolſley Bridge, placed at the foot of the hanging-woods of Wolſley park; an incloſure of much native wild beauty. The antient manſion of the family of the ſame name, lies low and near the river. This manor is a member of Heywood. In the twentieth year of the Conqueror. Nigellus, the paternal anceſtor of Greſlei, held it of the biſhop. About the reign of Henry II. it was a divided manor, between Richard Hints and Richard Wolſley. * Soon after this, they ſeem to have become ſole proprietors.

AFTER riding a little way along the Lichfield road, I turned to the left, and croſſing the vale, which now expands and grows leſs rionte, repaſs the Trent at Colton, on a bridge of a fine ſingle arch. [Note: THE BURBOT.] Near this place is ſometimes taken the Burbot, a fiſh of diſguſting appearance, but of a delicate flavor, and very firm. It is not common in theſe parts, but abounds in the Witham, and in the fens of Lincolnſhire; and is very common in the lake of [Page 81] Geneva, where it is called Lota. According to the new arrangement of fiſh, it is ranked among the gadi, or cod-fiſh: by Mr. Ray, among the eel-ſhaped fiſh. The form is long; the head depreſſed; the mouth large, armed with ſmall teeth; the noſe furniſhed with two beards, the chin with one: on the back are two fins; the ſkin ſmooth and ſlippery, of a diſagreeable green color, ſpotted with yellow. It is very voracious, and very prolific. The noted old fiſherman of the Rhine, Leonard Baltner, took out of a ſingle fiſh not fewer than 128,000 eggs.

MR. Erdeſwik informs us, that at the time of the Conqueror, one Galfridus was lord of Colton. Soon after, [Note: COLTON.] Sir Hardulph de Gaſtenoys had either all, or ſhared it with another; for in the year 1315, Sir William Gaſtenoys and Anſelm le Marſhal were joint lords of it. After many generations, a female (Thomaſine, ſole heireſs and daughter of Sir Thomas Gaſtenoys, laſt male heir of the family, by marriage with Sir Nicholas Greiſlei, about 1379) tranſferred it to the houſe of Drakelow. The old hall, which was large enough to contain fourſcore lodging-rooms, was burnt down in the time of Charles I. by the careleſſneſs of a ſervant. It at that time belonged to Lord Aſton. *

THE country now alters for the worſe, and the ſoil becomes wet and miry. About two miles diſtance from Colton ſtands Blithefield, [Note: BLITHEFIELD.] the reſpectable old ſeat of the reſpectable family of the Bagots; a moſt antient and virtuous race. At the time of the Conqueſt they were found poſſeſſed of Bagot's Bromley. In 1193, or the fifth of Richard I. a younger branch became ennobled, by the marriage of Milliſent, heireſs of Robert Lord Stafford, with [Page 82] Hervey Bagot; from which match ſprung a long line of peers of every rank. The elder branch acquired this place by the marriage of Sir Ralph Bagot (before the reign of Henry IV.) with Elizabeth, ſole heireſs of Richard Blithefield, lineally deſcended from a Saxon of the name of Hereman, or the warrior.

THE houſe is built round a court, and ſtill retains, on the outſide, the ſimplicity of appearance of that of an antient baron; and within, the old hoſpitality. The beſt rooms are, the hall, the library, and a large drawing-room, lately added. The firſt is a noble apartment, unadorned, excepting over the chimney-piece, where is a repreſentation in bold and good ſculpture, in freeſtone, of an event dear as life to every true Engliſhman; that of King John granting to his ſubjects the great charter of liberty.

AMONG the portraits, I obſerved on a board, in a flat manner, [Note: LORD-TREASURER BURLEIGH.] the head of lord treaſurer Burleigh, with a white beard, bonnet, collar of the garter, the George, and a white wand. His abilities as a ſtateſman were inimitable; his private virtues not beyond the power of the great to copy; his magnificence was attended with hoſpitality; his annual deeds of alms to the amount of five hundred pounds; his honeſty, temperance, moderation, induſtry, and juſtice *. As his life was excellent, ſo his death was happy; dying in the fulneſs of years and of glory, envied, as his greateſt enemy declared, only becauſe his fun went down with ſo much luſtre; not clouded, as generally is the fate of great miniſters.

A CONTEMPORARY of his is painted in the ſame manner, [Note: HENRY EARL OF HUNTINGTON.] with the collar of the garter; his beard forked: the date 1588, [Page 83] aet. 52. This preſerves a likeneſs of a very different character, Henry Earl of Huntington, lord preſident of the north, and one of the peers to whom the cuſtody of the queen of Scots was entruſted. Burleigh created a fortune by his prudence; Huntington diſſipated his, by being the dupe to the miniſters of the riſing fanaticiſm of the age, which, nurtured by ſuch wooers of popularity as Leiceſter, Eſſex, and this noble peer, in the next age attained ſtrength ſufficient to ſubvert the church it pretended to purify.

A NEIGHBORING ſtateſman, Sir Walter Aſton of Tixal, [Note: SIR WALTER ASTON.] is painted on board. He appears with a firm countenance, ſhort hair, and whiſkers; in a black dreſs, laced with gold on the ſeams, and graced with a triple gold chain. Sir Walter was ambaſſador to Spain in the time of the negotiations about the Spaniſh match, in the reign of James I. and favored the deſigns of the young prince, and his favorite Buckingham. He was reſolute and prudent, and had great knowlege of the importance of the Engliſh trade with Spain. * He might ſerve his maſter, but he hurt his own fortune; diſſipating great part of £10,000 a year in ſupporting the dignity of his character, and the honor of his country. His reward was a Scotch peerage; being created by Charles I. in the third year of his reign, Lord Forfar.

AN half-length of Walter Earl of Eſſex, father to the unfortunate Robert. He is repreſented in rich armour. [Note: WALTER EARL OF ESSEX.] On one ſide are the words Virtutis comes invidia; alluſive to the conſtant ill uſage he met with from the worthleſs favorite of Elizabeth, the Earl of Leiceſter. He was a nobleman of great merit and courage; was [Page 84] ſent to command in Ireland, in 1573, and performed ſervices worthy of his character; but at length, worn out by the ill uſage of the miniſtry, who with-held from him the neceſſary ſupport, he came over to England, to lay his complaint before the queen. He was artfully received, and ſent back with the promiſes of better uſage. Grief, or, as others ſay, poiſon, adminiſtered by the inſtigation of Leiceſter, who loved his wife, cut him off at the age of thirty-five, at Dublin, in 1576. Perhaps the infamy of Dudley's character, and the ſpeedy and indecent marriage of the counteſs with that favorite, might give riſe to the ſcandal; for an inquiſition was made on his death, and the report in conſequence was, that he died of the flux; a diſorder very frequent in Ireland in thoſe days.

HERE are ſeveral portraits of different perſons, [Note: COLONEL RICHARD BAGOT.] of this worthy houſe. Among them is Colonel Richard Bagot, governor of Lichfield, who fell in the cauſe of loyalty, in the fatal battle of Naſeby. He is dreſſed in a buff coat, and repreſented with long hair.

I MUST not omit a curious-picture of a countrywoman of mine, [Note: MRS. SALUSBURY.] Mrs. Saluſbury of Bachymbed, in Denhighſhire, in a vaſt high ſugar-loafed hat and kerchief, bordered with ermine. Near her are two of her grandchildren, Sir Edward Bagot, and Elizabeth, afterwards Counteſs of Uxbridge, by her daughter Jane, who married Sir Walter Bagot, and conveyed the Welch eſtate into the family. A head of her ſon Charles Saluſbury, in long hair, and flowered night-gown, is alſo preſerved here.

MARY Counteſs of Ailsford, [Note: LADY AILSFORD.] painted in her old-age, by Hudſon, ſitting, is a moſt beautiful portrait. She is dreſſed, ſimplex munditiis, [Page 85] in pale brown ſattin, white hood, handkerchief, apron, and ſhort ruffles: a reproach to the unſuitable fantaſtic dreſs of theſe times, which attempts to diſguiſe reſpectful years, and renders that inevitable period the object of ridicule.

Mary, daughter to Hervey Bagot, Eſquire, of Pipehall, firſt married to Sir Charley Berkeley. Earl of Falmouth, * and afterwards to Charles Earl of Dorſet; a brown, beauty of the gay court of Charles II. and, as Grammont ſays, the only one that had the appearance of beauty and wiſdom in the departments of maids of honor to the Dutcheſs of York.

William Legge, firſt Earl of Dartmouth, and his lady; parents of the late Lady Barbara Bagot.

THAT eccentric ſtateſman, Henry Earl of Bolingbroke, when young, dreſſed in his robes.

A HEAD of that great actor, and dramatic poet, Moliere. [Note: MOLIERE] He lived the adoration of his countrymen; but, dying in his profeſſion, was, according to a cuſtom of the church of his nation, refuſed Chriſtian burial by Harlai de Chanvalon, a debauched archbiſhop of Paris. The king (Lewis XIV.) at length prevailed to have him buried in a church; but the curate would not undertake the office. The populace, with difficulty could be perſuaded to ſuffer his remains to be carried to their grave. Bouhours marks the injuſtice done this great man, in the following lines:

[Page 86]
Tu reformas & la ville & la cour,
Mais quella en fut la recompenſe?
Les François rougiront un jour
De leur peu de reconnaiſſance.
II leur falut an comedien
Qui mit à les polir ſa gloire & ſon etude;
Mais Moliere, a tu gloire il ne manquera rien.
Si parmi les defauts que to peignis ſi bien,
Tu les avais repris de leur ingratitude.

I QUIT the ſubject of paintings, notwithſtanding there are multitudes of pictures, by the beſt maſters, in this houſe. They were all undergoing a removal; therefore I avoid further mention of them, until they are fixed in their permanent ſituations. But I muſt not be ſilent about the collection of coins, one of the moſt valuable and inſtructive in England, the bequeſt of his beloved neighbor and friend Thomas Anſon, Eſquire.

THE park is at ſome diſtance from the houſe. [Note: PARK.] The oaks are of a very great ſize: a twin-tree was lately ſold for £.120, and ſome ſingle ones for half that ſum; and I am told, that there are ſeveral now ſtanding equally large.

THE church is very near the houſe, [Note: CHURCH.] in the gift of Sir William Bagot, dedicated to St. Leonard. Within, are ſeveral ſculptured tombs, of the time of the fifteenth century; ſome with imaged figures, others engraven; moſtly in memorial of the Bagots: one of an Aſton of Broughton, and another expreſſed by a little ſkeleton of a Broughton, a child of three months old. The monument of Sir Edward Bagot, who died in 1673, is mural, and ſuperſedes the ten commandments, being placed over the altar. The inſcription tells us, that he was a true aſſertor of epiſcopacy in the church, and hereditary monarchy in the ſtate; which probably [Page 87] entitled him, in thoſe days, to this ſacred place. On the outſide of the church, two modeſt heaps of turf, parallel to each other, mark the ſpot where the remains of the laſt amiable owners of the place repoſe; whole merit ſurvives in their ſucceſſor.

I FOUND myſelf here not very diſtant from Whichenoure Hall, and could not reſiſt the deſire of viſiting the ſeat of the celebrated Flitch, the deſperate reward of conjugal affection.

IN my road, not far from Blithefield, I again met with the Trent, [Note: HERMITAGE.] and the Canal: the laſt a moſt fortunate embelliſhment to the neat ſeat of Mr. Liſter of Hermitage. The proprietors (with the reſpect they uſually pay to gentlemen) have before this houſe given it an elegant form; and, to add to the ſcenery, luckily the aweful mouth of a conſiderable ſubterraneous courſe of the navigation opens to view, and affords the amazing ſight of barges loſing themſelves in the cavern, or ſuddenly emerging to day from the other ſide.

THE church of Hermitage, ſeated on a ſmall eminence, [Note: CHURCH.] forms another beautiful object. This belongs to the cathedral of Lichfield, and is ſtiled the prebendary of Hanſacre, a hamlet in this pariſh, founded by Biſhop Clinton.

ON the oppoſite ſide of the Trent is Maveſton Ridware, a rectory, [Note: MAVESTON RIDWARE.] whoſe church is dedicated to St. Andrew. This had been the property of the Maveſtons, at left from the time of Edward I. to that of Henry IV. The tomb of Sir Robert Maveſton, or Mauveſine, in the pariſh-church, recals to memory a melancholy ſtory. In the beginning of the reign of the uſurping Henry, when the kingdom was divided againſt itſelf, two neighboring knights, Sir Robert Maveſton, and Sir William Handſacre, of Handſacre, took arms in ſupport of different parties: the firſt, to aſſert the cauſe of Bolingbroke; [Page 88] the laſt, that of the depoſed Richard. They aſſembled their vaſſals, and began their march to join the armies, then about to join battle, near Shrewſbury. The two neighbors, with their reſpective followers, unfortunately met, not far from their ſeats. Actuated by party rage, a ſkirmiſh enſued: Sir William was ſlain on the ſpot. Sir Robert proceeded to the field, and met his fate with the gallant Percy. What a picture is this accident, of the miſeries of civil diſſenſion! What a tale is the following, of the ſudden viciſſitude of hatred to love, between contending families! Margaret, one of the daughters, and co-heireſs of Sir Robert Maveſton, gave her hand to Sir William, ſon of the knight ſlain by her father; and with her perſon and fortune compenſated the injury done by her houſe to that of Handſacre. *

THE other daughter, Elizabeth, married Sir John Cawardine, whoſe poſterity was extinct here in the male line, by the death of Thomas Cawardine, Eſquire, in 1592.

THE tomb of Sir Robert is altar-ſhaped: his figure armed and helmed, with a great ſword on one ſide, and a dagger on the other, is engraven on the incumbent alabaſter ſlab, with the following inſcription: ‘Hic jacet Dns. Robertus de Mauveſine, miles, Dns. de Mauveſine Ridware, qui occubuit juxta Salopiam, 1403, ſtans cum rege, dimicans ex parte ſua uſque ad mortem, cujus animae propitietur Deus.

HERE is a tomb of two other Mauveſins, one croſs-legged, with each hand on his ſword; both under arches in the wall.

NEAR the church is the gateway, part of the antient manſion of the family of Mauveſin; and on the other ſide of the Trent, beyond [Page 89] High Bridge, is a moated fragment of the rival houſe of Handſacre.

AT the diſtance of about two miles from Maveſton, [Note: KING'S BROMLEY.] I paſſed by King's Bromley. Before the Conqueſt, this manor had been the reſidence of the Earl of Mercia. Here, in 1057, died the pious Leoſric, * huſband to the famous Godiva. At that time, it was called Brom-legge. After the Conqueror took it into his own hands, the name was changed to that of King's Bromley. It continued in the crown till the year 1258, or the forty-third of Henry III. when Roger Corbet died, holding it of the king in capite . It continued in that family till the year 1451, or the thirtieth of Henry VI. when it came by deſcent to Praiers of Baddeleigh, in Cheſhire: from him to one Partridge, who ſold it to Francis Agard of Ireland; whoſe deſcendants poſſeſſed it for ſome generations, when it was ſold to John Newton, Eſquire, of Barbadoes; in whoſe line it remains.

FROM hence I paſſed by Orgrave, one of the ſeats of George Anſon, [Note: ORGRAVE.] Eſquire, lately the property of the Turtons. Afterwards, through the village of Alrewas. The manor was in poſſeſſion of Algar Earl of Mercia; but on the forfeiture of his ſon, the brave Edwin, was beſtowed by the Conqueror, with the following, on Walter de Somervil, one of his Norman followers.

FROM hence I viſited Whichenoure, or Wichnor, [Note: WHICHENOURE MANOR.] where I croſſed a bridge of the ſame name over the Trent, not far from the place where it receives the Tame. The Roman road paſſes this way, and on this marſhy ſpot was formed upon piles of wood. It runs from the eaſt ſide of Lichfield, and points to the north-eaſt. [Page 90] Much braſs money has been found, and, as I am informed, there are veſtiges of a Roman camp in Whichenoure park.

THE church ſtands on an eminence, [Note: CHURCH.] on the north ſide of the river. The houſe is at a ſmall diſtance, and enjoys a moſt beautiful view. I believe this to have been on the ſite of a very antient manſion, which Leland obſerves to have been quite down in his days; and that the ſeat was then below, [Note: SINGULAR TENURE.] much ſubject to the n [...]ngs of the Trent. The preſent houſe is a modern building, remarkable for the painted wooden bacon flitch, ſtill hung up over the hall chimney, in memory of the ſingular tenure by which Sir Philip de Somervile, in the time of Edward III. held the manors of Whichenoure, Sireſcote, Ridware, Netherton, and Cowlee, of the Earl of Lancaſter, then lord of the honor of Tutbury. The ſervices clamed were theſe, viz. two ſmall fees; ‘that is to ſay, when other tenants pay for releef one whole knight's fee, one hundred ſhillings; he, the ſaid Sir Philip, ſhall pay but fifty ſhillings; and when eſcuage is aſſeſſed throgheout the land, or ayde for to make the eldeſt ſon of the lord knyght, or for to marry the eldeſt doughter of the lord, the ſayd Sir Philip ſhal pay bot the moiety of it that other ſhal paye.’

‘Nevertheleſs, the ſayd Sir Philip ſhal ſynde meyntienge and ſuſteiyne one bacon flyke hanging in his halle, at Wichenore, ready arrayed all tymes of the yere, bott in Lent, to be given to everyche mane or womane married, after the dey and yere of their mariage be paſſed; and to be given to everyche mane of religion, arch biſhop, prior, or other religious; and to everyche preeſt, after the year and day of their profeſſion finiſhed, or of their dignity reſeyved, in forme following. Whenſoever that ony ſuch before named wylle come for to enquire for the [Page 91] baconne in their owne perſon, or by any other for them, they ſhall come to the bayliff or porter of the lordſhip of Whichenour, and ſhall ſay to them in the manere as enſewethe: Baylife, or Porter, I doo you to knowe, that I am come for my ſelf (or, if he come for any other, ſhewing for whome) one bacon flyke, hanging in the halle of the lord of Whichenour, after the forme thereunto belonginge.’

‘After which relation the bailiffe, or porter, ſhal aſſigne a daye to him, upon promiſe by his feythe to return, and with him to bring tweyne of his neighbours; and in the meyn time the ſaid bailif ſhal take with him tweyne of the freeholders of the lordſhip of Whichenoure, and they three ſhal goe to the mannour of Rudlowe, belonging to Robert Knyghtley, and there ſhall ſomon the foreſaid Knyghtley, or his bayliffe, commanding him to be ready at Whichenour the day appoynted, at pryme of the day, with his carriage; that is to ſay, a horſe and a ſadyle, a ſakke, and a pryke, for to convey and carry the ſaid baconne and corne a journey out of the county of Stafford, at his coſtages; and then the ſayd bailiffe ſhal, with the ſaid freeholders, ſomon all the tenants of the ſaid manoir to be ready at the day appoynted at Whichenour, for to doe and performe the ſervices to the baconne. And at the day aſſigned, all ſuch as owe ſervices to the baconne, ſhal be ready at the gatte of the manoir of Whichenour, from the fonne riſinge to none, attendyng and awayting for the comyng of hym and his felowys chapaletts, and to all thoſe whiche ſhal be there, to doe their ſervices deue to the baconne: and they ſhal lede the ſaid demandant, wythe tromps and tabours, and other manner of mynſtralſeye, to the halle dore, [Page 92] where he ſhal fynde the lord of Whichenour, or his ſteward; redy to deliver the baconne in this manere:’

‘He ſhal enquere of hym which demandeth the baconne, if he hath brought tweyne of his neighbours; who muſt anſwere, They be here redy; and then the ſteward ſhal cauſe theis two neighbours to ſwere yf the ſaid demandant be a weddyt man, or have be a man weddyt, and yf ſyth his marryage one yere and a day be paſſed, and yf he be a freeman or a villeyn: and yf his ſeid neghbours make othe that he hath for hym all theis three poynts reherſed, then ſhal the baconne be take downe, and brought to the halle dore, and ſhal there be layd upon one half a quarter of wheatte, and upon one other of rye: and he that demandeth the baconne ſhal kneel upon his knee, and ſhal hold his right hande upon a booke, which ſhal be layd above the baconne and the corne, and ſhal make oath in this manere:’

‘Here ye Sir Philip de Somervyle, lord of Whichenour, mayntayner and giver of this baconne, that I A. ſyth, I wedded B. my wife, and ſyth I had her in my kepyng and at wylle, by a yere and a daye after our marryage, I would not have changed for none other, farer ne fowler, richer ne powrer, ne for none other deſcended of gretter lynage, ſlepyng ne waking, at noo tyme; and if the ſeid B. were ſole, and I ſole, I wolde take her to be my wife before all the wymen of the worlde, of what condytions. ſoevere they be, good or evyle, as helpe me God, and his ſeyntys, and this fleſh, and all fleſhes.’

‘And his neghbours ſhal make oath, that they truſt verily he hath ſaid truely. And yf it be founde by his neghbours before named, that he be a villeyn, there ſhal be delyvered to him half [Page 93] a quarter of wheatte and a cheeſe; and yf he be a villein, he ſhal have half a quarter of rye, withoutte cheeſe, and then ſhal Knyghtley, the lord of Rudlow, be called for, to carry all their thyngs to fore reherſed; and the ſayd corne ſhal be layd upon one horſe, and the baconne apperteyneth ſhal aſcend upon his horſe, and ſhal take the cheſe before hym, if he have a horſe; and yf he have none, the lord of Whichenour ſhall cauſe him have one horſe and ſadyl, to ſuch tyme as he paſſed his lordſhippe; and ſoe ſhal they departe the manoyr of Whichenour with the corne and the baconne to fore him, him that hath wonne ytt, with trompets, tabourets, and other manoir of mynſtralſce. And all the free tenants of Whichenour ſhal conduct him to be paſſed the lordſhip of Whichenour; and then ſhall they retorne except hym to whom apperteiyneth to make the carriage and journy withoutt the countye of Stafford, at the coſtys of his lord of Whichenour. And yf the ſeid Robert Knyghtley doe not cauſe the baconne and corne to be conveyed as is reherſed, the lord of Whichenour ſhal do it to be carryed, and ſhall diſtreigne the ſaid Robert Knyghtley for his default, for one hundred ſhillings in his manoir of Rudlowe, and ſhall kepe the diſtreſſe ſo takyn irrepleviſable *:’

SUCH is the hiſtory of this memorable cuſtom. I wiſh, [Note: PRESENT STATE OF THE FLITCH.] for the honor of the ſtate matrimonial, that it was in my power to continue the regiſter of ſucceſsful clamants, from that preſerved in the 608th Spectator; but, from the ſtricteſt enquiry, the flitch has remained untouched, from the firſt century of its inſtitution to the preſent: and we are credibly informed, that the late and preſent [Page 94] worthy owners of the manor, were deterred from entering into the holy ſtate, through the dread of not obtaining a ſingle raſher from their own bacon.

THE firſt peſſeſſor of this manor was Sir Walter de Somervile, a Norman, on whom it was beſtowed by the Conqueror. It reſted in his family till the death of the above-mentioned Sir Philip de Somervile, who left two daughters, Joan, wife of Sir Rhys ap Griffith, Knight; and Maud, married to Edmund Vernon. This eſtate fell to the former, and remained in the family till the laſt century, when it was ſold by Mary, daughter or widow to Henry Griffith, to — Offley, Eſquire, anceſtor to the late owner; who, within theſe few years, alienated it to the preſent John Levet, Eſquire.

I CANNOT tell the preciſe year in which it was ſold to Mr. Offley; but it appears that Henry Griffith was living in 1597.

IN compliance with my original plan, I took the ſame way, in order to return into the great road. Soon after, [Note: RUDGLEY.] repaſſing the Trent, at Colton bridge, I reached Rudgley, a ſmall town, celebrated for its great annual fairs for horſes of the coach breed.

THE church is a little north of the town, [Note: CHURCH.] is dedicated to Saint Auguſtin, and is a vicarage belonging to the chapter of Lichfield. Oppoſite is a very antient timber-houſe, belonging once to the Chetwynds; at preſent to Mr. Anſon. On an eminence, above the town, is beautifully ſituated a large houſe, formerly belonging to the Weſtons, greatly enlarged and improved by the preſent owner, Aſhton Curzon, Eſquire.

THE antient owners of Rudgley were of the ſame name with the town: ſome of the family had the honor of being ſheriffs of the [Page 95] county, in the reign of Edward III: another was knight of the ſhire, in the ſame period. The name continued here till after the time of Henry VI. Erdeſwik mentions this to have been a manor belonging to the biſhop of Lichfield; which I find was alienated to the king by biſhop Sampſon, in 1547.

THE pariſh and village of Longdon ſucceeds that of Rudgley. [Note: LONGDON.] The church lies out of the road, on the left; is a vicarage, dedicated to St. James; and belongs to a prebendſhip of Lichfield. The village conſiſts of ſcattered houſes, extending for a vaſt way on each ſide of the lane; from whence the name. This gave riſe, to a common ſaying in theſe parts,

The ſtouteſt beggar that goes by the way,
Cannot beg thro' Long' in a ſummer's day.

THIS village antiently was full of gentlemen's ſeats; a moſt uſeful ſpecies of population to the poor, whoſe diſtreſſes ſeldom fail reaching the ears of mediocrity, but whoſe cries rarely attain the height of greatneſs. Sir Edward Littleton had a houſe called Cheſtal; Simon Rudgley, ſheriff of the county in the time of Edward III. had another; the younger brother of the Aſtons had a ſeat here, from the reign of Edward I; the Broughtons had Broughton Hall, from the days of King John; and Adam Arblaſter poſſeſſed Liſwys (now Longball) in 1351, or the twenty-fifth of Edward III. in whoſe name it continued till of late, when it was purchaſed by Francis Cob, Eſquire.

THIS manor is of vaſt extent. Above thirty other manors, lordſhips) and villages, owe ſuit and ſervice, beſides Cank, Heywood and Rudgley, to the court-leet, which is held here every [Page 96] three weeks. It once belonged to the biſhop of Lichfield, but was alienated by Biſhop Sampſon.

AFTER winding up the ſteep of a high hill, an advanced part of the foreſt of Cank, I turned out of the road to Beaudeſert, [Note: BEAUDESERT.] the princely ſeat of Lord Paget, placed on the ſide of a lofty ſloping eminence, ſheltered above, and on each ſide, by beautiful riſing grounds, and emboſomed with trees, commanding in front, over the tops of far ſubjacent woods, a moſt extenſive and agreeable view; ſo that it well vindicates the propriety of its name.

THIS had been a place belonging to the biſhops of Lichfield, which, with the manors of Longdon, Heywood, Berkſwick, Cank, Rudgley, and Shugborrow, were part of the ſpoils of that ſee, wreſted from it in the time of Edward VI. with the connivance of Richard Sampſon, then biſhop, who accepted in their ſtead certain impropriations of the value of an hundred and eighty-three pounds a year. Theſe livings at that time were good rectories; now poor vicarages, or mercenary curacies, annexed to the biſhoprick.

THE leviathan who ſwallowed theſe manors, was Sir William Paget, created by Edward VI. Baron Beaudeſert. He firſt appeared in the reign of Henry VIII. and from a low beginning, meritoriouſly roſe to the dignity of ſecretary and ambaſſador to Charles V. and Francis I. In the next reign, he was made chancellor of the dutchy of Lancaſter, and comptroller of the houſhold; and obtained a peerage. In that of Mary, became lord privy-ſeal, and was reſtored to the order of the Garter, from which he had been degraded in the time of her predeceſſor. At the acceſſion of Elizabeth, at his own requeſt, he was permitted to retire from the ſervice of the ſtate, being zealouſly attached to the religion of his [Page 97] former miſtreſs *. Yet his zeal for the old religion, produced in him no ſcruples about ſharing in the plunder of the church. The reforming Somerſet, and the papal Paget, agreed in that ſingle point. His poſterity derive from him an uncommon extent of intereſt and command.

Beaudeſert was rebuilt by Thomas Lord Paget, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth. It is a very handſome ſtone edifice, in form of an half H; of late moſt admirably improved, and fitted up by the noble owner. It is totally diſengaged from the gateway, walls, and other obſtructions that encumbered it in the days of Plott; and the grounds that environ it are layed with the ſimplicity that forms true grandeur.

HERE is a gothic hall of eighty feet by twenty-one; a diningroom of forty-two by twenty-ſeven; and a magnificent gallery of ninety-ſeven by ſeventeen. The other apartments are ſmall.

IN the drawing-room is a fine portrait of the founder of the family, [Note: PORTRAIT OF LORD PAGET.] the firſt Lord Paget, a three-quarters length; in a bonnet, black gown furred, with a great forked beard, the George, a ſtick, and dagger. A fine performance of Holbein's.

FROM the houſe I aſcended to the ſummit of the hill, [Note: CASTLE-HILL.] on the verge of Cank heath, to an antient Britiſh poſt called the Caſtlehill. It is encompaſſed with a vaſt rampart and two ditches. The two entrances are oppoſite to each other, and before the eaſtern are ſeveral advanced works. It commands a vaſt view, and was well ſituated for the purpoſes of a temporary retreat. I refer the reader, for an account of the uſes of theſe entrenchments, to my Welſh Tour ; for they are common to moſt parts [Page 98] of Britain. Doctor Plott aſcribes this work to King Canute; but I ſuſpect it to be of earlier origin.

FROM hence is an extenſive view of the chace, [Note: CANK FOREST.] or foreſt, of Cank, or Cannock, which Plott derives from the name of the Daniſh prince Canuti Sylva. This vaſt tract was once covered with oaks, but for ſome centuries paſt, has been ſpoiled of its honors; even old Drayton * deplores its loſſes, owing, as he ſays, to the avarice of the times.

O woeful Cank the while,
As brave a wood-nymph once as any of this iſle,
Great Arden's eldeſt child!
Now by vile gain devour'd!

BUT this change is much more beautifully deſcribed by Mr. Maſters, in his Itinerary of 1675; in which he deſcribes his journey in moſt elegant Latin. His paſſage over Cank wood, and the tranſlation by my ingenious friend , cannot but be acceptable to every reader of taſte.

Hinc mihi mox ingens ericetum complet ocellos,
Sylva olim paſſim nymphis habitata feriſque:
Condenſae quercus, domibus res nata ſtruendis
Ornandoque foco, et validae ſpes unica claſſis.
Nunc umbris immiſſa dies, namque aequore vaſto
Ante, retro, dextrâ, laevâ, quo lumina cunque,
Verteris una humili conſurgit vertice planta,
Purpureſque erice tellurem veſtit amictu;
Dum floret ſuaves et naribus adflat odores
Haec ferimus ſaltem amiſſae ſolatia ſylvae.
[Page 99]
A vaſt and naked plain confines the view,
Where trees unnumber'd in paſt ages grew,
The green retreat of wood-nymphs; once the boaſt,
The pride, the guardians of their native coaſt.
Alas! how chang'd! each venerable oak
Long ſince has yielded to the woodman's ſtroke.
Where'er the chearleſs proſpect meets the eye,
No ſhrub, no plant, except the Heath, is nigh;
The ſolitary Heath alone is there,
And wafts its ſweetneſs in the deſert air.
So ſweet its ſcent, ſo rich its purple hue,
We half forget that here a foreſt grew.
R. W.

FROM Caſtle-hill I deſcended towards the great road, and paſſed by Fairwell church *, once conventual, [Note: FAIRWELL CHURCH.] belonging to a priory of Benedictine nuns. It originally was the property of canons regular, or hermits; but at the requeſt of Roger, Jeffry, and Robert, brothers of Farewell, and with the conſent of the chapter of Lichfield, was beſtowed on the priory, about 1140, by Roger de Clinton, biſhop of Litchfield; who endowed it with the mill, and all the lands between the brooks, then called Chiſtals, and Blache Siche, with other emoluments mentioned in his two grants. Henry II. was alſo a great benefactor to theſe nuns, beſtowing on them three ploughlands at Fagereſwell, one at Pipe, and one at Hamerwich, and forty acres of land cleared from wood, in the foreſt of Cank, in 1527. On the ſuppreſſion of the leſſer religious houſes, it was given to Lichfield, to increaſe and maintain [Page 100] the choriſters, in recompente of a penſion which ſhould have been given by Cardinal Wolſey, out of his college at Oxford. *

AFTER a ſhort ride, I reached the ſummit of a long but gentle deſcent, from which is a fine view of the city of Lichfield, lying at the foot of it. The ſituation is delightful, in a fertile and dry ſoil, with ſmall riſings on almoſt every ſide. The cathedral, with its three ſpires, is a moſt ſtriking object.

Lichfield is a place of Saxon origin, [Note: LICHFIELD.] and owes its riſe to Ceadda, or Chad, the great ſaint of Mercia. I omit the legend of the thouſand Chriſtians, diſciples of St. Amphibolus, that were martyred here under Diocleſian; or the three kings ſlain at this place in battle, as ſculptured over the-town-hall. I take up its hiſtory about the year 656, when Oſwy, king of the country, eſtabliſhed a biſhoprick here, and made Dwina, or Dinma, the firſt prelate. To him ſucceeded Cellach and Trumberct; and on his demiſe, [Note: ST. CHAD.] the famous Ceadda. This pious man at firſt led an eremitical life, in a cell, at the place on which now ſtands the church of his name, and ſupported himſelf by the milk of a white hind. In this place he was diſcovered by Rufine, the ſon of Wolphere, who was privately, inſtructed by him till the time of his martyrdom, before-recited. Remorſe, and conſequential converſion, ſeized the Pagan prince. As ſome ſpecies of expiation, he preferred the apoſtle to the vacant ſee. He built himſelf a ſmall houſe near the church, and, with ſeven or eight of his brethren, during the interval of preaching, read and prayed in private. On the approach of his death, flights of angels, ſang hymns over his cell. Miracles at [Page 101] his tomb confirmed the holineſs of his life. A lunatic, that by accident eſcaped from his keepers, lay a night on it; and in the morning was found reſtored to his ſenſes. The very earth taken out of it, was an infallible remedy for all diſorders incident to man or beaſt.* Ceadda was of courſe canonized; a ſhrine was erected in honor of him; great was the concourſe of devotees: the place increaſed and flouriſhed.

THE hiſtory of our cathedrals is; in its beginning, but the history of ſuperſtition, mixed with ſome truth and abundance of legend: humiliating proof of the weakneſs of the human mind! yet all the fine arts of paſt times, and all the magnificent works we now ſo juſtly admire, are owing to a ſpecies of piety that every lover of the elegance of architecture muſt rejoice to have exiſted.

WE are told, that in the days of Jaruman, about the year 666, [Note: CATHEDRAL WHEN FOUNDED.] the cathedral was founded.

I SHALL not trouble the reader with a dry liſt of prelates; but only mention thoſe diſtinguiſhed by ſome remarkable event, that befel the ſee during their days.

IN thoſe of Winfrid, ſucceſſor to St. Chad, in 674, Theodore, archbiſhop of Canterbury, thought fit to divide the biſhoprick into two, and to eſtabliſh the other at Sidnaceſter; in Lincolnſhire, the preſent Stow [...] Winfrid diſapproving this defalcation, was deprived for contumacy. The dioceſe might well bear dividing; for at that time it contained the whole kingdom of Mercia. At preſent, it comprehends all Staffordſhire, except [Page 102] [...], which belong to Worceſter; the larger part of? [...] and about half Shropſhire.

IN the time of Biſhop Adulf, Oſſa, king of the Mercians, procured liberty from the pope of erecting the fee into an archbiſhop [...]ick, in 786, and to aſſign him for ſuffragans Wincheſter, Hereford, L [...]g [...]ſter (Leiceſter), Helmham, and Dunwick. This honor died with Adulf.

A BISHOP Peter, in 1067, the year ſucceeding the Conqueſt, removed the ſee to St. John's, in Cheſter; where he died, and was interred, in 1085.

HIS ſucceſſor, Robert de Limeſey, ſmitten with the love of the gold and ſilver * with which the pious Earl Leofric had covered the walls of his new convent at Coventry, in 1095 removed the ſee to that city, and at once ſcraped from a ſingle beam, that ſupported a ſhrine, 500 marks worth of ſilver .

I NOW ſpeak of a prelate of a different temper; [Note: [...] C [...]I [...]TON.] to whoſe munificence both the church and city were highly indebted. Roger de Clinton, conſecrated in 1129, took down the antient Mercian cathedral. We are not informed of the dimenſions or nature of the building, any more than we are of that built by this biſhop. It muſt have been, according to the reigning mode of the times, of the ſpecies of architecture uſually called Saxon, with maſſy pillars and round arches. There is not at preſent the left relique of this ſtile. But I am unacquainted with the accident, or calamity, which deſtroyed the labors of this pious prelate; who took up the croſs, and died at Antioch, on a pilgrimage to the holy ſepulchre.

[Page 103] AFTER a ſucceſſion of twelve prelates, Walter de Langton, [Note: BISHOP LANGTON] treaſurer of England, was conſecrated biſhop of this ſee, in 1296. He was highly favored by Edward I. His proſperity was interrupted by the reſentment of the prince, who meanly revenged on the biſhop a ſhort impriſonment he had ſuffered in the time of his father, for riotouſly deſtroying his deer. After a perſecution and confinement of above two years, he emerged from all his difficulties, and reſumed his paſtoral charge in a manner that did him great honor. He may be conſidered as the third architect of this cathedral: to him we are indebted for the preſent elegant pile. He laid the foundation for our Lady's chapel; an edifice of uncommon beauty, finiſhed after his death with money left for that purpoſe. He built the cloyſters, and expended £2,000 upon a ſhrine for St. Chad. He beſtowed on the choir ſeveral rich veſtments, a chalice, and two cups of beaten gold, to the value of £200. To the vicars choral he gave a ſtanding cup, and an annual penſion of £20, and procured for them and the canons great immunities: in particular, there was an order from the king to the juſtices of Staffordſhire, that, without trial, they ſhould hang upon the next gallows divers perſons that by force kept their lands from them. This prelate alſo ſurrounded the cloſe with a wall and ditch, made the great gate at the weſt end, and the poſtern at the ſouth. He gave his own palace, at the weſt end of the cloſe, to the vicars choral, and built a new one for himſelf at the eaſt end. He partly built, or enlarged, the caſtle at Eccleſhal, and the manors of Heywood and Shugborow, and the palace in the Strand. He finiſhed his uſeful life in November 1321, and was buried in the chapel of his own founding.

THE cathedral continued in the ſtate it was left by Biſhop [Page 104] Langton, till the time of the diſſolution, when the rich ſhrine of St. Chad, and other objects of ſimilar devotion, fell a prey to the rapacity of the prince. The building continued in its priſtine beauty till the unhappy wars of the laſt century, [Note: CATHEDRAL FORTIFIED.] when it ſuffered greatly by three ſieges. The ſituation of the place on an eminence, ſurrounded by water and by deep ditches, and fortified with walls and baſtions, rendered it unhappily a proper place for a garriſon.

IN 1643, it was poſſeſſed by the royaliſts of the county, under the Earl of Cheſterfield: when it underwent the attack rendered memorable by the death of Lord Brook, commander of the parlementary forces. His lordſhip, in reconnoitring the cathedral, in a wooden porch in Dams ſtreet, was ſhot into the eye by a muſket-ball, on March 2d, 1643. This happened to be the feſtival of St. Chad, the patron of the church. The cavaliers attributed the direction of the fatal bullet to the influence of the Saint, in reſentment of the ſacrileges this nobleman was committing on his cathedral. What ſhare the Saint had in this affair, I will not pretend to ſay; but the muſket was aimed, and the trigger drawn, by a neighboring gentleman poſted in the leads, known by the name of dumb Dyot. The loſs of Lord Brook gave very ſhort reſpite to the garriſon; which was taken almoſt immediately after, by Sir John Gell.

IN April, in the ſame year, it was attacked by Prince Rupert At that time it was commanded by Colonel Rouſwel; a ſteady governor over an enthuſiaſtic garriſon. He defended the plac [...] with vaſt reſolution. A breach was made by the blowing up o [...] a mine. The attack was made with great bravery, but great loſs [Page 105] At length the garriſon gave up, on the moſt honorable conditions *. The colonel took care to plunder the church of the communion-plate, during the time the fanatics were in poſſeſſion. They uſed every ſpecies of profanation; hunted a cat in it with hounds, to enjoy the fine echo from the roof; and brought a calf, dreſſed in linen, to the font, and ſprinkled it with water, in deriſion of baptiſm .

THE prince appointed Colonel Hervey Bagot

Colonel Bagot met him, and after a briſk action, whipped the fellow himſelf into his retreat, and narrowly miſſed taking him.

the governor; who kept poſſeſſion till the ruin of the king's affairs, in 1646; when the colonel, and other commanders, being ſatisfied that the king had not an hundred men in any one place in the field, nor any garriſon unbeſieged, ſurrendered on very honorable terms, on the 10th of July, to Adjutant Louthian .

THE ſtate of this church, after ſo many ſieges, may eaſily be conceived. The honor of reſtoring it to its former ſplendor, [Note: RESTORED BY BISHOP HACKET.] was reſerved for John Hacket, preſented to this ſee in 1661. On the very next day after his arrival, he ſet his coach-horſes, with teams, to remove the rubbiſh; and in eight years time reſtored the cathedral [Page 106] to its preſent beautiful ſtate, at the expence of twenty thouſand pounds *; one thouſand of which was the gift of the dean and chapter; the reſt was done either at his own charge, or by benefactions reſulting from his own ſolicitations. He died in 1670. A very handſome tomb was erected in the choir to his memory, with his effigies laid recumbent on it, with a mitre on his head, and in his epiſcopal dreſs.

THE weſt front is of great elegance, adorned with the richeſt ſculpture, and, till of late, with rows of ſtatues of prophets, kings of Judah, &c. and, above all, a very bad one of Charles II. who had contributed to the repair of the church, by a liberal gift of timber. This ſtatue was the work of a Sir William Wilſon, originally a maſon from Sutton Coldfield, who, after marrying a rich wife, arrived at the dignity of knighthood.

THE ſculptures round the doors were very elegant; but time, or violence, hath greatly impaired their beauty.

James II. when Duke of York, beſtowed on this church the magnificent weſt window. The fine painted glaſs was given of late years, by Dean Addenbrook.

THE northern door is extremely rich in ſculptured moldings: [Note: RICH NORTH DOOR.] three of ſoliage, and three of ſmall figures in ovals. In one of the loweſt is repreſented a monk baptizing a perſon kneeling before him. Probably the former is intended for St. Chad; the latter for Wulferus. It is a misfortune, that the ornaments of this cathedral are made of ſuch friable ſtone, that what fanaticiſm has ſpared, the weather has impaired.

[Page 107] IN the front are two fine ſpires, and a third in the centre, [Note: FRONT.] of a vaſt height, and fine proportion.

THE roof was till of late covered with lead, but grew ſo greatly out of repair, that the dean and chapter were obliged to ſubſtitute ſlates inſtead of metal, on account of the narrow revenues left to maintain this venerable pile; and, after the ſtricteſt oeconomy, they will be under the neceſſity of contributing from their own income, in order to complete their plan. The excellent order that all the cathedrals I have viſited are in, does great credit to their members; who ſpare nothing from their own incomes to render them not only decent, but elegant.

THE body is lofty, [Note: BODY.] ſupported by pillars formed of numbers of ſlender columns, with neat foliated capitals. Along the walls of the ailes are rows of falſe arches, in the gothic ſtile, with a ſeat beneath.

THE upper rows of windows, in the body, are of an uncommon form, being triangular, including three circles in each.

IN each tranſept are two places, formerly chapels; at preſent conſiſtory courts, and the vicar's veſtry-room.

THE choir merits attention, [Note: CHOIR.] on account of the elegant ſculpture about the windows, and the embattled gallery that runs beneath them. On each ſide are ſix ſtatues, now much mutilated, placed in beautiful gothic niches, and richly painted. The firſt on the left is St. Peter; the next is the Virgin; the third is Mary Magdalene, with one leg bare, to denote her legendary wantonneſs. The other three are St. Philip, St. James, and St. Chriſtopher, with CHRIST on his ſhoulders.

THE beauty of this choir is much impaired by the impropriety [Page 108] of a rich altar-piece, of Grecian architecture, terminating this elegant gothic building.

BEHIND this is St. Mary's chapel, [Note: ST. MARY'S CHAPEL.] with a ſtone ſkreen, the moſt elegant which can be imagined, embattled at top, and adorned with ſeveral rows of gothic niches, of moſt exquiſite workmanſhip; each formerly containing a ſmall ſtatue. Beneath them are thirteen ſtalls, with gothic work over each. In this chapel are nine windows, more narrow, lofty, and of more elegant work than any of the others; three on each ſide, and three at the end.

In this chapel ſtood the ſhrine of St. Chad. [Note: SHRINE OF ST. CHAD.] Here was interred Ceolred *, king of the Mercians; and in later times, here was placed the magnificent tomb (on the ſite of the ſhrine) of the firſt Lord Paget, adorned with columns, [Note: MONUMENTS.] with two kneeling figures of a man and woman between the front and back pillars. Theſe were deſtroyed in the blind fury of civil war; as was another fine tomb of a Lord Baſſet of Drayton, who died in 1389. Few indeed eſcaped. Of thoſe are the effigies of the great Biſhop Langton, with his paſtoral ſtaff in one hand, and the other hand in the action of benediction: another of Hugh de Pateſhul, who died in 1241, remarkable for having the ſtigmata, or marks of our Saviour's, wounds on the hands and feet: a reſpectful ſuperſtition of antient times. Dean Heywood is repreſented in his habit, and again naked, with the emaciated change which death occaſions.

HERE are ſeveral monuments within the walls, of a moſt frugal nature, having no appearance of any part but the head and [Page 109] feet. From an intermediate bracket, it is probable ſome favorite ſaint might have been honored with a rich image.

I HAVE a ſingular drawing of a tomb now loſt, of a knight naked to his waiſt; his legs and thighs armed, and at his feet and head a flag's horn; his hair long and diſhevelled a [...] his hands, as if he was reading a confeſſion, or act of cont [...] [...]ion: acroſs his middle, on his ballet, is his coat of arms; which ſhew him to have been a Stanley. He is called Captain Stanley. [...] ſaid to have been excommunicated, but to have received funeral rites in holy ground (having ſhewn ſigns of repentance) on condition his monument ſhould bear thoſe marks of diſgrace. I [...]nd [...] Sir Humphry Stanley of Pipe, who died in the reign of He [...] VI [...]. who had a ſquabble with the chapter, about conveying the water through his lands to the cloſe. He alſo defrauded the pr [...]bendary of Stotford of his tithes: ſo probably this might be the gentleman who incurred the cenſure of the church for his [...]mp [...]ety.

ON the floor, near the weſt door, are two droll epitaphs. ‘ Wiliam Roberts * of Overbury, ſome time malſter in this town (tells [...]ou) for the love I bore to choir ſervice, I choſe to be buried in this place. He died Dec [...]. 16th, 1748.’

THE other gives you the poſthumous grief of a deceaſed wife, [...] claſ [...]ical knowledge of the living huſband:

H. S. [...].

Secunda Hora [...] Line [...]

viz.

[...], [...]Z: [...]

[...]

Qu [...]

[...]

[Page 110] In St. Mary's chapel is a fragment of ſingular ſculpture, of two [...] beneath one is a king ſitting, with one hand on young p [...]ce; in the other a monarch alſo ſeated.

[...] there lay near the north door a very thick and clamſy [...], with a croſs [...]eury on it, and a great knif [...] reſembling thoſe repreſented in Monfo [...]on I part II. tab 4xv. as [...] I know of ne [...]es in the Chriſtian church which [...] inſtrument; therefore preſume it to be a ſimp [...] [...], and that the perſon whom the ſtone comme [...] [...] was neither more nor leſs than a butcher. Theſe [...] acknowledgements are not unfrequent: I have ſeen a deceaſ [...] ſhearer de [...]d by his ſhears, and a taylor by his gooſe.

* ON the part of the ſouth choral aile is the chapter-houſe▪ [...] is approached through a paſſage with gothic [...] ſ [...]te. The room is an octagon, conſiſting of two long [...] ſix [...] or ſide [...], orn [...]mented with arches, like the approach; [...] the loſt pillars, inſtead of being reſtored, are now ſupplied wi [...] [...] uniform pla [...]ter, ſupported in the center by a cluſtered [...] l [...]m [...]. Above is a library, instituted by Dean Heywood, conta [...]ng ſome [...]aluable books and manuſcripts.

* T [...], [...] ſurrounding ſp [...]re, is built on three ſides. The palace originally founded by Biſhop Longton, was rebuilt [...] manner by Biſhop Hacket. The dea [...] [...] in the civil wars, was reſrtored after the reſtoration.

I [...] the hall of the antient palace [...]as pain [...]ed the life and moſt [...] of Edward I. and his officers; a [...]ng [...]al [...] deeds of Sir Roger de Puleſdor, againſt my [...].

  • 1. at Seafford. p. 74.
  • 2.....Lichfield. p. 106.
  • 3.....Lichfield. p. 109.
  • 4.....Lichfield. p. 110.

[Page 111] THE prebendal houſes are built around the cloſe. The whole property is in the church, except two houſes on the ſouth ſide, bordering on the pool, which, before the preſent cauſeways were made, were granted to the city, that the inhabitants might have landing-places, and acceſs to the cathedral; which in old times had a vaſt concourſe of devotees to the ſhrine of St. Chad.

THIS precinct is ſupplied with water from Maple Hay, [Note: WATER.] about a mile and a half to the north; two fountains having been beſtowed on the church by Thomas Bromley, for ever, on the annual payment of 15s. 4d. I find that this donation was made before 1293; for in that year a diſpute aroſe between the dean and chapter, and Thomas de Abbenhale, about the paſſage of the water through his lands *.

THE whole cloſe is of exempt juriſdiction, [Note: MEMBERS OF THE CHURCH.] and quite independent of the city. Its members are, a dean, precentor, chancellor, and treaſurer, who have prebends annexed to their offices. There are twenty-ſeven other prebends, of which that of Eccleſhal is annexed to the biſhoprick. Out of theſe thirty-one, the dean and four more are ſtiled canons reſidentiary; which four are choſen out of the prebendaries and dignitaries. Here are twelve minor canons: five of whom are called prieſt-vicars; the other ſeven, lay-vicars, or ſinging-men. Both theſe were formerly collegiated, and had their hall and houſes. That of the prieſt-vicars is a handſome room, rebuilt, and uſually is lent for the purpoſes of aſſemblies, and other amuſements. A new houſe alſo ſtands on the ground once occupied by the houſe of the choriſters: before it ſtood, within memory, a very pretty gate, which formed the entrance; on which was inſcribed Domus Choriſtes.

[Page 112] BESIDES theſe members, are an organiſt, two vergers, a ſacriſt, and ſub-ſacriſt. It is remarkable, that the four archdeacons have here no ſtalls, as is uſual in all other cathedrals.

THE other churches are that of St. Mary, [Note: ST. MARY'S] rebuilt ſince the year 1716, when, the body being ruinous, its fine ſpire ſteeple was unneceſſarily pulled down. In the time of Edward III. a religious guild was inſtituted, and after that much promoted by Dean Heywood. Five prieſts belonged to this ſociety, who officiated in the church *. It is a vicarage, in the gift of the dean.

ST. Michael, [Note: ST. MICHAEL.] or Greenhill, is on an eminence eaſt of the town; remarkable for its extenſive church-yard. This, and that of Stow, or St. Chad's, are curacies dependent on St. Mary's. St. Chad's is reckoned the oldeſt of the churches of this city. In its north end formerly ſtood the ſhrine of St. Catherine, whoſe chauntry-prieſt had his ſtipend from the vicars-choral of the cathedral. Near it is the well of the faint, where he had his firſt oratory; which in antient times was much frequented by devotees.

THE grey friars had a houſe here, [Note: GREY FRIARS.] founded about 1229, by Biſhop Alexander, who gave certain free burgages, on which it was erected. It was deſtroyed by fire in 1291, but rebuilt in the thirty-ſixth of Henry VIII. It was granted to Richard Crumblethorn. At preſent, both houſe and land ſupport an hoſpital at Seal, in Leiceſterſhire. The water which now ſupplies the city, was granted, on St. James's day, in 1301, by Henry Campanarius, ſon of Michael de Lichfield, bell-founder. Henry gave his fountains [Page 113] at Foulwel, near Alreſchaw, in pure and perpetual alms to the friars of this houſe, with power to cover them with a head of ſtones, and of carrying the pipes through his land, on condition that, whenever they wanted repair, the friars were to indemnify him and his heirs for the damage done to the ground. Several parts of the houſe are yet ſtanding, and form a pleaſant and comfortable habitation. In digging near it, was found a large tombſtone, with a croſs fleury, ſurrounded by a ſingular inſcription, to the following purpoſe:

Ricardus mercator victus morte noverca
Qui ceſſat mercari pauſat in hâc ierarca.
Exculit ephebus paucis vivento diebus
Eccleſiam rebus ditat variis ſpeciebus,
Vivat ut in Caelis nunc mercator Michaelis.
Richard the merchant here extended lies,
"Death, like a ſtep-dame, gladly clos'd his eyes.
"No more he trades beyond the burning zone,
"But happy reſts beneath this ſacred ſtone.
"His benefactions to the church were great;
"Tho' young, he haſten'd from his mortal ſtate.
"May he, tho' dead in trade, ſucceſsful prove,
"Saint Michael's merchant in the realms above."

The ſtone is ſtill to be ſeen there. A figure of it was ſent to the Gentleman's Magazine, by Mr. Greene, in this city. The inſcription and tranſlation are copied from the ſame magazine: for they appear to me to be equally faithful and ingenious.

A LITTLE beyond, ſtands the hoſpital of St. John's, [Note: HOSPITAL OF ST. JOHN.] conſiſting of a maſter and twelve poor brethren. The maſter is a clergyman, who has a good houſe and ſtipend for ſuperintending the [Page 114] charity, and reading daily prayers in the chapel belonging to it. The founder is uncertain. We only know that William Smith, while biſhop of Lichfield, in the time of Henry VII. formed here a new foundation for a maſter, two prieſts, and ten poor men. Henry patronized the charity, and endowed it with the old hoſpital of Denhal, and the lands and impropriation of Burton church, both in Wiral, in Cheſhire. Smith alſo founded the grammar-ſchool in this city *.

AMONG other things worthy of attention in this city, is the cabinet of curioſities, antient, natural, and artificial, in the poſſeſſion of Mr. Greene, ſurgeon. It contains numbers of moſt valuable and inſtructive pieces in each claſs. A viſit to my worthy friend is the more agreeable, as he takes great pleaſure in gratifying the curioſity of all that favor him with their company.

THE city is divided from the cloſe by a large piece of water, [Note: CITY.] originally three; at preſent remain only this and another, called Stowpool, a little to the eaſt. Biſhop Langton made the cauſeway, bridges, and dams, at each end of the pool. Before that, the great road went round Stowpool, near Stow church. The city is neat, and well built; contains little more than three thouſand ſouls; is a place of great paſſage, has a conſiderable manufacture of ſail-cloth, and a ſmall manufacture of ſaddle-cloths and tammies.

IT was originally governed by a guild and guild-maſter; [Note: HOW GOVERNED.] which were the origin of corporations, and took riſe before the time of the Conqueſt; the name being Saxon, ſignifying a fraternity, which unites and flings its effects into a common ſtock, and is derived [Page 115] from Gildan, to pay *. A guild was a public feaſt, to commemorate the time of the inſtitution; and the guild-hall the place in which the fraternity aſſembled: Theſe (at leſt after the Conqueſt) paid fines to the crown, and formed part of its revenue. Richard I. enabled it to purchaſe lands to the value of ten pounds; but it was not chartered till the reign of Edward VI. who formed it into a regular corporation by its firſt charter. This was confirmed by Queen Mary and Elizabeth; and Charles II. granted a new one, confirming all the others.

IT is governed by a recorder, high ſteward, ſheriff, two bailiffs, a town-clerk, and coroner. One of the bailiffs is elected by the biſhop; the others to be elected annually by and out of the brethren which form the corporation. The city has power of life and death within their juriſdiction; a court of record; and a pie-powder court, which regulated the diſputes ariſing in fairs.

THE diſtrict of the city and county of Lichfield is called the ſheriff's ride, [Note: DISTRICT.] and lies at unequal diſtances around. In this the corporation has excluſive juriſdiction.

THIS city ſent repreſentatives in the thirty-third of Edward I; [Note: MEMBERS.] the fourth, fifth, ſixth, ſeventh, and twentieth of Edward II. and firſt, fourteenth, and twenty-ſeventh of Edward III; from whoſe reign they were diſcontinued, till that of Edward VI . The members are returned by the ſheriff and bailiffs. The right of [Page 116] electing is in the freemen by ſervitude; in the burgage-holders, or ſuch who live in the town and pay a ſmall acknowlegement to the corporation; and in the freeholders of forty ſhillings a year, within the ſheriff's ride.

Lichfield is quite an open town: all the traces of the ditches made by Biſhop Clinton are loſt, [Note: CASTLE.] as well as of the tower, on which he is ſaid to have beſtowed ſuch great expence *. The name only of Caſtle Ditch, in the eaſt part of the town, preſerves its memory. Probably in this fortreſs Richard II. kept his ſumptuous Chriſtmas, in 1397, when he conſumed two hundred tuns of wine, and two thouſand oxen ; but with more certainty we know that it was his place of confinement, in his road to the tower of London, in 1399, a captive prince. The unhappy Richard here attempted his eſcape, by ſlipping from the window of the high tower into a garden; but being ſeen, was carried back to his impriſonment .

Wall, [Note: WALL, OR ETOCETUM.] the antient Etocetum, lies about a mile and a half from Lichfield, on the Watling-ſtreet road, on a riſing ground. There are ſtill ſome remains of the walls to be ſeen, mixed with roots of ſome very old aſh-trees. Coins and tiles evince it to have been the Roman Etocetum, as well as its diſtance from Pennocrucium, a place ſomewhere on the river Penk, not far from Penkridge; but the ſite not well aſcertained. The Watling-ſtreet road enters the county near Tamworth, and is continued into Shropſhire, as far as Wroxeter. Near Wall, another Roman road croſſes it; and at the interſection is an exploratory mount, about forty feet in diameter, called Offlo, in ſight of Borough Cop, near Lichfield, on which [Page 117] the martyrdom of the thouſand Chriſtians, in the tenth perſecution, is ſaid to have happened. This is aſſerted by John Roſs, a Warwickſhire antiquary, who died in 1491, near twelve hundred years after the event; which he alone relates.

THESE lows, which have the ſame ſignification as laws in Scotland, [Note: LOWS.] and mean a mount, and placed here in ſight of one another, were uſually deſigned as exploratory, and for the repetition of ſignals; and ſometimes were ſepulchral.

I MADE one day an excurſion in ſearch of the ſeven Tumuli, [Note: TUMULI.] which are ſaid, in the firſt volume of the Archaeologia, p. 57, to be near this town. As I could diſcover only Borough Cop and Offlo, which fall within the deſcription, I was obliged to extend my ride. I paſſed through Whittington, a village with a church and ſpire-ſteeple, about two miles N. E. of Lichfield. Paſſed through Fiſherwick park, a fine ſeat of the Earl of Donnegal, built from a deſign of Mr. Brown's: the grounds bounded by the Tame, a beautiful river. Elford church, village, and houſe, the ſeat of the late Earl of Suffolk, form a pretty groupe of objects on the oppoſite bank. I forded the river, and went by Elford Low, a verdant mount, which Doctor Plott proved, from examination, to have been ſepulchral; but, from its ſituation and elevation, I ſuſpect it might have had on it a ſpecula, or watch-tower; and that all the others might have been for the ſame uſe, and to repeat ſignals in time of danger *.

Elford, before the Conqueſt, was poſſeſſed by Earl Algar; [Note: ELFORD.] after which the Conqueror himſelf ſeized it for his own uſe. About Henry the Third's reign, William of Arderne was lord of it, and [Page 118] his poſterity was ſeiſed of it till the marriage of Maud, ſole heireſs of Sir John Arderne, with Thomas, ſecond ſon of Sir John Stanley of Latham, Knight; he dying in 1463, the 6th of Edward IV. Margaret, his daughter, conveyed it by marriage to the Stantons: by the ſame means it paſſed from the Stantons to the Smiths; from the Smiths to the Huddleſtons, and from the Huddleſtons to the Bowes. So very rapid was the change of family in this place! It continued with the Bowes four or five generations; but, about the latter end of the laſt century, became the property of the Honorable Craven Howard, by marriage with Mary, daughter of George Bowes, Eſquire: and continued in his poſterity (the Earls of Suffolk) till the death of the late able and honeſt peer; when it devolved to his ſiſter, the Honorable Frances Howard.

IN the church are ſeveral fine monuments, [Note: CHURCH.] in the antient ſtile.

IN the north wall is a painted figure, with curled hair, gown down to his knees, buſkins on his legs, ſword, gold chain, his hands cloſed, and a ring on his thumb.

AN alabaſter tomb of an Arderne, in a conic helmet, mail round his neck, chin, and ſhoulders, and a collar of S S: one of his hands claſps that of his wife, who has on a rich pearl bonnet, a cloak, and gown. Around the tomb are various figures, in the dreſs of the times.

SIR William Smith, who died in 1500, lies armed, has a collar of S S. and is repreſented beardleſs. He lies between his two wives: Iſabel, in long hair and a coronet, daughter of John Nevil Marquis of Montacute, brother to the great Earl of Warwick; and Anne, daughter of William Stanton, by whom he acquired this [Page 119] place. Monks, and coats of arms, ſurround the tomb: the firſt, to expreſs his piety; the laſt, to gratify the vanity of ſurvivors.

SIR John Stanley, ſon of Thomas Stanley and Maud Arderne, lies under an arch, with both hands ſupplicatory, in armor, with a mail muffler. His head reſts on a helm, with the Eagle and Child, the cognizance of the Stanleys.

UNDER another arch is his eldeſt ſon, a child with curled hair, and in a long gown, recumbent: one hand points to his ear; the other holds a ball, the unfortunate inſtrument of his death; on which was inſcribed Ubi dolor ibi digitus.

ABOUT two miles further, in a place called Elford Park Farm, I diſcovered the ſite of the ſeven Tumuli, or Barrows: only one exiſts, the reſt having been deſtroyed within a few years; that which remains is ſmall, and evidently ſepulchral. There had probably been a battle on this ſpot during the heptarchy: whether between Saxons and Danes, or two Saxon princes, is uncertain.

Croxal church ſtands on an eminence. Within are two tombs, [Note: CROXAL CHURCH.] with the figures of an armed man and his wife, curiouſly engraven on each. One commemorates John Horton, of Caton, and his ſpouſe, Anne, daughter of John Curzon, of this place. He died in the year 1500. His name is expreſſed in form of a rebus; the word Hor cut upon a tun.

THE other tomb is of George Curzon, Eſquire, and his wife Catharine, who died in 1605. By the marriage of their only daughter Mary, to the famous Sir Edward Sackville Earl of Dorſet, it was conveyed to that noble family, in which it ſtill remains. [Page 120] The Curzons had been poſſeſſed of it ever ſince the reign of Henry I.

PASS by Hazelar hamlet and chapel. The laſt is prebendal, and at preſent converted into a pig-ſtye. Ride for ſome time by the ſide of the little river Meaſe, the boundary, in this part, between Staffordſhire and Derbyſhire. A little further is the village and church of Clifton, [Note: CLIFTON.] uſually called Clifton Camville, from a family of that name, who poſſeſſed it from the year 1200, or the ſecond of King John, to about the year 1315. The ſpire of the church is extremely elegant, joined to the tower by flying buttreſſes. In the church is a tomb, with the effigies of Sir John Vernon of Harleſton, in this neighborhood, and Dame Allen, his wife. He is dreſſed in a bonnet and long gown, with a chain from his neck, as uſual with people of worſhip; for he had been one of the king's counſel, and cuſtos rotulorum of the county of Derby. His wife is dreſſed in a ſquare hood, with a purſe, knife, and beads by her ſide. They died in 1545.

VISIT Thorp Conſtantine, [Note: THORP.] a ſmall church cloſe by the ſeat of my matrimonial relation, William Inge, Eſquire, who deſervedly bears the reſpectable and uſeful character of being the beſt juſtice of any country gentleman in England. The living is in his gift, and the whole pariſh his property. The manor was once belonging to the ſee of Ely; for it appears that Hotham, biſhop of that dioceſe in 1316, obtained for it a charter of free warren.

Henry Lord Scrope, favorite of Henry V. beheaded for his ungrateful plot againſt his maſter, left to this church a veſtment worth 26s. 8d. on condition the prieſt ſhould pray for his [Page 121] ſoul on Sundays, and in all his maſſes. His will, made before his treaſon was diſcovered, is a curious piece of hypocriſy *.

I CONTINUED this little ramble to Sekindon, a mile diſtant, on the edge of Warwickſhire, remarkable for a lofty artificial mount, the keep of a Saxon caſtle, with a flat area beneath; at the bottom are the remains of a great rampart, and the whole ſurrounded with a deep ditch. This place is celebrated for the battle between Ethelbald, king of the Mercians, and Cuthred, king of the Weſt Saxons, in 755 , when Ethelbald, diſdaining flight, was ſlain by Beonred; one of his own officers, who, for a ſhort ſpace, uſurped the kingdom.

ABOUT four miles farther lies Tamworth, [Note: TAMWORTH] between the conflux of the Tame and the Ankor, which formed at this place the appearance of an iſland; its Saxon name being Tameneordige and Tamanweorthe; ige ſignifying an iſland. It had long been the reſidence of the Mercian princes, who preferred it on account of its pleaſant ſituation, and the quantity of woodland, which afforded them in plenty the pleaſures of the chaſe. Offa dates a grant, in 781, to the monks of Worceſter, [Note: A ROYAL RESIDENCE.] from his royal palace at Tamworth. Ceonulf, Bernwulf, and Burthred, date other charters, in the years 814, 841, and 854, from the ſame place §. The precinct of their reſidence was an enormous ditch, forty-five feet wide, protecting the town on the north, weſt, and eaſt; the rivers ſerving as a defence on the other ſide. The ditch is filled up in many places, yet ſtill there are veſtiges of it, and alſo of two mounts, on which probably ſtood two ſmall towers.

[Page 122] Tamworth was totally ruined by the incurſions of the Danes: [Note: RUINED BY THE DANES.] at length was reſtored by the celebrated Ethelfleda, who, [Note: RESTORED BY ETHELFLEDA.] in the ſpring of 913, erected a tower * on the artificial mount on which the preſent caſtle ſtands. Here, in 920, ſhe finiſhed her glorious life, and in 922 ſhe received, I may ſay, poſthumous honors, by the aſſemblage of the Mercian tribes ſhe had conquered, who, with the princes of North Wales, here acknowleged the ſovereign power of her brother Edward, probably obtained by her valour and prudence.

THE town, or borough, as it was called on the Conqueſt, continued part of the royal demeſne, but was afterwards ſet at a certain rent to the lords of the caſtle; the firſt of whom, after that event, [Note: MARMIONS.] was Robert Marmion, one of the followers of the Conqueror, on whom it was beſtowed. His poſterity remained maſters of it for ſome generations, holding of the crown in capite, by the ſervice of finding three knights at their own coſts, for forty days, in the wars of Wales.

ON the death of Philip Marmion, in 1291, the twentieth of Edward I. this fortreſs deſcended to his eldeſt daughter Joan, wife of William Mortein; who dying without iſſue, it fell three years after, by agreement among the co-heirs, to Joan, [Note: FREVILES.] a relation of Philip Marmion, and wife of Alexander Frevile. The Freviles by this means owned it till the year 1419, or ſeventh of Henry V. when Sir Baldwyn Frevile dying childleſs, Thomas Ferrers, ſecond ſon of William Lord Ferrers, of Groby, became maſter of it, in right of Elizabeth his wife, eldeſt of the three ſiſters of Sir Baldwyn. [Note: FERRERS.] The Ferrers held it till the beginning of the preſent [Page 123] century; when it paſſed into the family of the Comptons, by the marriage of James Earl of Northampton with Elizabeth, ſiſter to Robert Lord Tamworth, grandſon and heir apparent to Robert Earl Ferrers, who had obtained it by his marriage, in 1688, with Anne, daughter of Sir Humphrey Ferrers, of this place. Lady Charlotte Compton, ſole ſurviving daughter of the match, Baroneſs de Ferrers in right of her mother, married the preſent Lord Townſhend, whoſe ſon, now Lord De Ferrers, enjoys the place. I muſt not forget to add, that Sir John Baldwyn, Knight, on the coronation of Richard II. claimed the honor of being the king's champion, by virtue of tenure of this caſtle (a ſervice performed by his predeceſſors the Marmions); but it being found that the Marmions held their right only from the tenure of Scrivelſby manor, it was challenged by Sir John Dymock, the then owner, and adjudged to him *.

TILL the preſent century it had been the ſeat of its lords. [Note: CASTLES.] The rooms are numerous, but inconvenient and irregular, except a dining-room and drawing-room; each with large projecting windows. Around the firſt are painted great numbers of coats of arms of the family of the Ferrers, and its alliances. The chimney-piece of the drawing-room is richly carved, in the old taſte, and beneath the arms is the motto, Only one.

THE beauty of the ſituation of Tamworth is ſeen from the caſtle to great advantage, varied with rich meadows, two bridges over the Tame and the Ankor, and the rivers wandering pictureſquely along the country. Michael Drayton, born on the [Page 124] banks of the laſt, moſt elegantly paints out his love-complaints, and celebrates the laſt in the ſweeteſt ſtrain.

Clear Ankor, on whoſe ſilver-ſanded ſhore
My ſoul-ſhrin'd ſaint, my fair idea lies:
A bleſſed brook, whoſe milk-white ſwans adore
Thy cryſtal ſtream, refined by her eyes;
Where ſweet myrrh-breathing zephyr in the ſpring
Gently diſtils his nectar-dropping ſhowers;
Where nightingales in Arden ſit and ſing
Amongſt the dainty dew-impearled flowers.
Say thus, fair brook, when thou ſhalt ſee thy queen:
Lo, here thy ſhepherd ſpent his wand'ring days,
And in theſe ſhades, dear nymph, he oft has been,
And here to thee he ſacrific'd his tears.
Fair Arden, thou my Tempe art alone;
And thou, ſweet Ankor, art my Helicon.

THE town is large and well-built; part is ſituated in Staffordſhire, and part in Warwickſhire; for which reaſon its members are returned by the ſheriffs of both counties *. It firſt ſent repreſentatives in the fifth year of Queen Elizabeth: and was made a corporation two years before; which conſiſts of two bailiffs, a recorder, and twenty-four capital burgeſſes. The right of voting is in the inhabitants paying ſcot and lot.

THE church is large, [Note: CHURCH.] built at different times. Near the chancel are two great round arches, with zigzag moldings, which were prior to the reign of Henry III. when this ſpecies of arch fell into diſuſe. Here are numbers of monuments, ſome antient, of the Freviles and Ferrers, with their figures, and thoſe of their wives. [Page 125] Here is alſo a handſome monument of John Ferrers, Eſquire, who died in 1680, aged 52; and of his ſon Sir Humphry Ferrers, knight, who died in 1678, aged 25. Their figures are repreſented in marble, as big as life, in a Roman dreſs, long flowing hair, and half-kneeling. Sir Humphry was the laſt male heir of his line.

THE church is dedicated to St. Editha, daughter to king Edgar; who, preferring the cloiſtered life to the troubles of a throne, received after death the honor of ſaintſhip. It has been ſaid, that ſhe founded here a nunnery, and that Robert Marmion, lord of this place, received from her very ſenſible marks of reſentment, for daring to remove the holy ſiſters. St. Editha deſcended from heaven, and, while Marmion was lying down, after a coſtly feaſt, in Tamworth caſtle, ſhe admoniſhed him to reſtore them to their rights, and, by way of memorandum, gave him ſuch a blow with her croſier on his ſide, that he roſe in extreme torments; which inſtantly ceaſed on repentance and reſtitution *. It is probable that this very Marmion made the church collegiate, and placed here a dean and ſix prebendaries, each of whom had his ſubſtitute, or vicar; for it is the opinion of Leland, this foundation aroſe from the piety of one of the name The idle legend might have been formed from ſome real offence , which might have been expiated in the manner uſual in old times.

SAINT Editha had alſo an image here. After the diſſolution, [Page 126] the ſeven incumbents had penſions, as late as 1553 *. Queen Elizabeth granted the college, and all its prebends, to Edward Downing and Peter Aſhton. At preſent, this great church is only a curacy.

In 1286, [Note: HOSPITAL.] the fifteenth of Edward I. Philip Marmion dedicated here an hoſpital to St. James, intending to found a houſe of Premonſtrenſians; but, till he could execute his deſign, granted it to William of Combery-hall, with all its appurtenances, and paſture in Aſhfield for four oxen and two horſes, on condition it ſhould celebrate maſs for his ſoul . There is now an hoſpital founded for more uſeful purpoſes, by Mr. Guy.

FROM Tamworth I returned to Lichfield, and reſumed my journey along the London road.

ABOUT two miles from the city, [Note: SWINFEN.] ſee on the left Swinfen, the ſeat of a gentleman of the ſame name; happy in its beautiful demeſne, ornamented with an extent of water, meads, and hanging-woods. This place was once the property of the Spermores; but in the time of Henry VI. by marriage of Joyce, daughter and heireſs of the family, with Willam Swinfen, it came into that name. The executors of the laſt of that line, a Doctor Swinfen, ſold it, in the preſent century, to Mr. Swinfen, of London; in whoſe family it continues.

A LITTLE farther, the great Watling-ſtreet croſſes the road near Weford, or the ford on the way. This is ſeated on Blackbrook, a ſmall ſtream, now furniſhed with a bridge. The ſtream runs through a beautiful tract of narrow but rich meadows, prettily bounded by low and fertile riſings. This ſpot had been the ſcene of much civil rage. A Purefoy was here ſlain by Sir Henry Willoughby, [Page 127] in the cauſe of Edward IV; and Sir Henry in the ſame place fought, and was deſperately wounded by Lord L'Iſle *. Weford Common, a black heath, ſucceeds; and a little beyond, on the left, ſtood Canwell priory, founded about the year 1142, by Geva, [Note: CANWELL.] widow of Jeffry Riddel, and daughter of Hugh Earl of Cheſter, for Benedictine monks. It had ten pounds a year in ſpiritualities, and fifteen pounds ten ſhillings and three pence in temporalities. It became at length a cell for a ſolitary monk; was ſuppreſſed, and granted by Henry VIII. to Cardinal Wolſey, towards the endowment of his two colleges .

NEAR this place I entered WARWICKSHIRE, in the pariſh of Middleton; from which the Willoughbies take their title. The road is over part of the common of Sutton Cofield, which is finely bounded on the left by a long-continued range of woods.

A FEW miles farther, I paſſed Moxhull hall, [Note: MOXHULL.] the neat-dreſſed ſeat of Mr. Hacket, a deſcendant of the worthy biſhop of that name; whoſe ſon, by marriage with Mary, eldeſt daughter of John L'Iſle, became owner of it, after it had been in the L'Iſles, or de Inſula, for ſome hundreds of years . On the right is the pariſh-church, Wiſhaw, and a little farther, that of Curdworth. [Note: CURDWORTH.] That manor was poſſeſſed, in the time of the Conqueror, by Turchil de Warwik, ſon of Alwine, a potent Saxon in the time of Edward the Confeſſor. Turchil is recorded to have been the firſt in England [Page 128] who, in imitation of the Normans, took a ſurname, ſtiling himſelf Turchil de Eardine, * or Arden, from his reſidence in that part of the country then called Arden, or the foreſt; a word, according to Cambden, by which both Britons and Gauls expreſſed a woodland tract. He was anceſtor to the antient and reſpectable family which flouriſhed under the ſame name, till the year 1643, when it was loſt in the male line, by the death of Robert Arden.

ABOUT half a mile from Curdworth, I croſſed the Tame at Curdworth Bridge, and a mile further the Cole, The view from hence, of the ſtream watering a range of rich meadows, bounded on one ſide by hanging-woods, is extremely agreeable; as is, a little farther, the town of Coleſhill, [Note: COLESHILL.] covering the ſteep aſcent of a lofty brow, on whoſe top appears the handſome church and elegant ſpire.

THE place had been long a royal demeſne; was poſſeſſed by Edward the Confeſſor, and afterwards by the Conqueror. It fell, either in his reign or that of William Rufus, into the hands of the Clintons, in whom it continued till the year 1353, the twenty-ſeventh of Edward III; when it paſſed to Sir John de Mountfort, by virtue of his marriage with Joan, daughter of Sir John Clinton. The Mountforts held it till the reign of Henry VII. when, by the cruel attainder and execution of Sir Simon Mountfort, for ſending thirty pounds, by his younger ſon Henry, to Perkin Warbeck, on ſuppoſition that Perkin was the real ſon of his former maſter Edward IV. This brought ruin on himſelf and family. He was [Page 129] tried at Guildhall, in 1494, and condemned to be drawn through the city, and hanged and quartered at Tyburn. * His manor of Coleſhill was immediately beſtowed on Simon Digby, deputy-conſtable of the caſtle, who brought the unfortunate gentleman to the bar. He was a younger ſon of the houſe of Tilton of Leiceſterſhire, anceſtor of the Lord Digby, the preſent worthy poſſeſſor.

IN the upper part of the town is a ſmall PLACE, neatly built. The church-yard commands a fine view of a rich country. The vicarage was formerly belonging to Markgate, in Bedfordſhire, but is now in the gift of its lord. The ſpire, lofty as it is, was fifteen feet higher, before it had been ſtruck with lightning in 1550; when the inhabitants ſold one of the bells towards the repairs.

IN the church are numbers of fine tombs of the Digbies, [Note: CHURCH.] with their figures recumbent. Among others, that of the abovementioned Simon, and his ſpouſe Alice, who lie under a tomb erected by himſelf. He died in 1519: ſhe ſurvived him, and left by her will a ſilver penny to every child under the age of nine, whoſe parents were houſekeepers in this pariſh (beginning with thoſe next the church) on condition that, every day in the year, after the ſacring of the high maſs, they ſhould kneel down at the altar and ſay five paternoſters, an ave, and a creed, for her ſoul, that of her huſband, and all Chriſtian ſouls; and the annual ſum of ſix ſhillings and eight pence to the dean, for ſeeing the ſame duly performed, and likewiſe for performing the ſame himſelf. At the reformation, this cuſtom was changed. The inhabitants [Page 130] purchaſed from the crown the lands charged with this money part maintains a ſchool: the reſt is diſtributed to ſuch children who repair to the church every morning at ten o'clock, and ſay the Lord's prayer; and the clerk has an allowance for ſeeing the performance, and for the ringing the bell to ſummon them *.

THE figure of Simon Digby is in armor, with lank hair, and bare-headed. His grandſon John, and great grandſon George, knighted at the ſiege of Zutphen, are repreſented in the ſame manner, with their wives. The firſt died in 1558; the laſt in 1586. Theſe are of alabaſter, and painted.

THE tomb of Reginald, ſon of Simon, who died in 1549, differs. His figure, and that of his wife, are engraven on a flat ſlab of marble, with twelve of their children at their feet.

ON a pedeſtal, with an urn at the top, is an inſcription to Kildare Lord Digby, of Geaſhil, in the kingdom of Ireland, who died in 1661; and on the oppoſite ſide is another, in memory of his lady, who died in 1692, drawn up by Biſhop Hough, forming a character uncommonly amiable and exemplary; the integrity of that worthy prelate giving ſanction to every line.

I FELT great pleaſure in peruſing an epitaph, by a grateful miſtreſs, to the memory of a worthy domeſtic, Mary Wheely, whom ſhe ſtiles an excellent ſervant and good friend; for what is a faithful ſervant but an humble friend?

BENEATH two arches are two antient figures of croſs-legged knights, armed in mail, with ſhort ſurtouts, in all reſpects alike; only one has a dog, the other a lion, at his feet. On their ſhields are two fleurs de lis, which denote them to have been ſome of the [Page 131] earlier Clintons; and by Dugdale * it appears, that one was John de Clinton, lord of this place, a ſtrong adherent to the barons againſt Henry III. who ſuffered a temporary forfeiture of his eſtate; but was reſtored to it by the famous Dictum de Kenelworth. He became a favorite of Edward I. and clamed for his manor of Coleſhill by preſcription, aſſize of bread and beer, gallows, pillorie, tumbril, a court-leet, infangthef, outfangthef, mercate, faire, and free warren. He died in the year 1291, the period of cruſades, and is buried croſs-legged.

I OBSERVE, that the piety of the Catholics has given the ſame attitude to ſeveral of the Sherborns, in the church of Mitton, in Yorkſhire, who were interred in the laſt century; ſo that I ſuſpect it to have ſometimes been conſidered merely as a reverential ſign of our SAVIOUR'S ſuffering.

THE deſerted ſeat of the Digbies lies about a mile or two from the town, [Note: COLESHILL HALL.] in a fine park. The houſe conſiſts but of one ſtory, beſides garrets; yet the apartments are numerous, approachable by ſtrange and unintelligible acceſs to all that are unacquainted with them, according to the ſtile of old buildings.

FROM Coleſhill I deſcended to pay a reſpectful pilgrimage to Blithe Hall, the ſeat of the great antiquary Sir William Dugdale; [Note: BLITHE HALL.] from whoſe indefatigable labors, his ſucceſſors in the ſcience draw ſuch endleſs helps. In reſpect to this county, he has fairly baffled every effort towards the diſcovery of any thing that could eſcape his penetrating eye.

THE houſe lies about a mile below Coleſhill, on the river Blithe; was purchaſed by Sir William from Sir Walter Aſton, and made his [Page 132] place of reſidence. It at preſent belongs (by female deſcent) to Richard Gueſt, Eſquire; whoſe politeneſs to an inquiſitive intruder I ſhall ever acknowlege. He was ſo obliging as to ſhew me an excellent half-length of his great anceſtor, dreſſed in black, with a bundle of manuſcripts in his hand, [Note: PORTRAIT OF SIR WILLIAM DUGDALE.] painted at the age of ſixty, by Peter Boſſcler, * in 1665.

ANOTHER portrait of his wife, Margery, daughter of John Huntback, Eſquire, of Sewal, in Staffordſhire; a head of Lord Keeper Bridgeman, a thin primitive face; [Note: LORD KEEPER LITTLETON.] another of Lord Clarendon; and a third of Lord Keeper Littleton, with a jovial open countenance. As a judge (for he had been lord chief juſtice of the King's Bench) he was, as Sir Edward Coke ſaid, a well-poiſed and weighed man . As lord keeper, diſpirited, from the melancholy apprehenſions he had of the approaching calamities of the times. For a while he temporized with the views of the oppoſition. At length, finding the reſolution of the leaders to ſeize on the ſeals, and make uſe of them againſt his royal maſter, he gave them up to a meſſenger, appointed for that purpoſe, and followed them, at the hazard of his life, to the king at York; where he loyally reſumed their uſe, till his death, at Oxford, in 1645; when he at once performed the functions of lord keeper, privy-counſellor, and colonel of a regiment of foot.

A HALF-LENGTH of the famous Elias Aſhmole, [Note: ELIAS ASHMOLE.] whom Antony Wood ſtiles ‘the greateſt virtuoſo and curioſo ever known or read of in England. Uxor ſolis took up its habitation in his breaſt, and in his boſom the great God did abundantly ſhore up the [Page 133] treaſures of all ſorts of wiſdom and knowlege *.’ It is well for poor Aſhmole, that the peeviſh hiſtorian never read the wonderful diary of his life, in which is a moſt minute and filthy detail of all his ails and ſtrange miſhaps ; otherwiſe Antony never would have been ſo profuſe of his praiſe. Yet, amidſt his foibles, he was an able botaniſt; of moſt uncommon knowlege in the ſtudy of antiquity and records; a phyſician, herald, chemiſt, and aſtrologer. On rectifying his nativity, he found his birth to have been on the 23d of May 1617, about three in the morning, or ‘3 hours 25 minutes 49 ſeconds A. M. the quarter 8 of II aſcending; but, upon Mr. Lilly's rectification thereof, anno 1667, he makes the quarter 36 aſcending .’ This jargon ſhould not deprive him of his real merit. To him we owe a moſt elaborate treatiſe on the inſtitution of the order of the Garter, he having been Windſor herald; various manuſcripts reſpecting county antiquities, ſtill extant; and, above all, the foundation of the Muſeum at Oxford, which bears his name, finiſhed in 1682, on purpoſe to receive the vaſt collection of curioſities beſtowed by him on that univerſity, which he had defended in 1646, as comptroller of the ordnance. Mr. Aſhmole was doubly engaged to the worthy owner of this houſe: firſt, by the friendſhip reſulting from the congenial turn of their ſtudies; and again, by his alliance with Sir William, in his marriage with his daughter Elizabeth, which proved a ſource of great generoſity, on his part, towards his father-in-law and his family. By his portrait, drawn by Nave, in 1664, in his herald's [Page 134] coat, he appears to have been a good-looking man, in long hair, with a view of Windſor in the back-ground.

FROM hence I viſited Maxſtoke caſtle, [Note: MAXSTOKE CASTLE.] three miles ſouth-eaſt, moſt of the way through fields. The caſtle is very entire, and ſtands on a plain, in a moſt ſequeſtered ſpot, ſurrounded with trees, and guarded by a moat. It is of a ſquare form: at each corner is an hexagonal tower, and at the entrance a fine gateway, with a tower of the ſame form with the reſt on each ſide. The gates are in their original ſtate, covered with plates of iron. Above, are the holes for pouring of hot ſand, or melted lead, on aſſailants, and the cavity which once held the portcullis. Theſe gates were made in the time of Humphry Stafford earl (afterwards duke) of Buckingham. He fixed on them his arms (ſtill remaining) impaled with thoſe of his wife, Anne Nevil; ſupported by two antelopes, derived from his mother, as one of the daughters of Thomas Woodſtock, Duke of Glouceſter; and added the burning nave, or knot, the cognizance of his own anceſtors. Within the court the walls are pierced with divers cells, the antient caſernes of the garriſon.

MUCH of the habitable part is ſtill ſtanding, but part was burnt by accident; what remains is the dwelling-houſe of Mr. Dilkes, in whoſe family it has been for ſeveral generations. The great vault ribbed with ſtone, the old chapel, and kitchen, ſtill remain; and the noble old hall, and a great dining-room with a moſt curious carved door and chimney, are ſtill in uſe.

AFTER the Conqueſt, [Note: OWNERS.] it was given to Turchil de Warwick; from one of his poſterity it was granted to the Limeſies, lords of Long Icbinton and Solibull; from them to the Odingfells; and from the Odingfells, by Ida, eldeſt daughter of the laſt of the name, to the [Page 135] great family of the Clintons before mentioned, who made it their chief ſeat. In 1437, the ſixteenth of Henry VI. Sir William de Clinton exchanged it with Humphry earl of Buckingham, with whom it became a favorite reſidence. On the execution of his ſon Henry Duke of Buckingham, in 1483, the firſt of Richard III. it was ſeized by the king. Richard, on his march towards Nottingham, ordered all the inner buildings of Kenelworth caſtle to be removed here *. After his defeat and death in Boſworth field, this place reverted to Edward, ſon of the laſt duke; who fell a victim, in 1521, to Henry VIII. a tyrant greater, and more inexcuſable, than him who deſtroyed the father. The eſtates, again forfeited, were granted to Sir William Compton, a favorite, and gallant tilter, in the reign of the former, and anceſtor of the Earl of Northampton. In 1596, his great grandſon, William Lord Compton, conveyed it to Lord Keeper Egerton, who, in two years after, ſold it to Thomas Dilke, Eſquire; in whoſe family it remains.

I DID not viſit the neighboring priory of Maxſtoke; ſo ſhall ſay no more of it; than that it was founded in 1336, by Sir William de Clinton, afterwards Earl of Huntingdon, and peopled with canons regular of St. Auguſtin

RETURNED through Coleſhill, and at a ſmall diſtance, on the left of the road, digreſſed to Packington, the ſeat of the Earl of Ailſford. [Note: PACKINGTON.] The manor antiently belonged to the priory of Kenelworth, being granted to it by Geoffry de Clinton, lord chamberlain to Herny II: At the diſſolution, it was ſold for the ſum of ſix hundred and twenty-one pounds and one penny, to John Fiſher, Eſquire, gentleman-penſioner to Henry VIII. and four ſucceeding [Page 136] monarchs. By the marriage of Mary daughter and heireſs of Sir Clement Fiſher, Baronet, with Heneage, ſecond Earl of Ailsford, the place was transferred to that noble family. The ſituation has of late years been highly improved by the change of the road. The grounds are prettily ſloped by nature, are well wooded, and the bottom filled with two pleaſing pieces of water. The houſe has alſo undergone many alterations; is a plain convenient building; except on one ſide, where opens a loggio (in our climate) moſt admirably adapted for the encouragement of rheums and rheumatiſms.

WITHIN is a good portrait of its founder, John Fiſher; a halflength, with a ſquare white beard, cloſe black cap, upright ruff, and black jacket.

A BEAUTIFUL picture of Henrietta Maria, conſort to Charles I. She is repreſented ſitting, in blue, with roſes in her hand, and her thorny crown by her.

HERE is alſo a portrait of Charles Duke of Somerſet, in his robes, father to the Counteſs Dowager of Ailsford.

THE country here begins to loſe the comforts of a gravelly ſoil, and changes to the wet-retaining clay. At the pleaſant village of Mireden it is uncommonly deep, [Note: MIREDEN.] but by the aſſiſtance of turnpikes become an excellent road. The pretty houſes on each ſide of the way, and the magnificent inn, famed for time immemorial for its excellent malt-liquor, with the various embelliſhments (made by the old inn-keeper, Reynolds) of gateway, little ponds, ſtatues, and other whims, enliven the ſpot greatly.

THE church is ſeated a little higher up, [Note: CHURCH.] on an eminence. Within is a handſome alabaſter tomb of John Wyard, in armour and mail, with ſword and dagger by his ſide; his arms a cinquefoil on his breaſt. This gentleman had been 'ſquire (as the inſcription relates) [Page 137] to Thomas de Beauchamp Earl of Warwick, and founder of a chauntry in this church; near which he had his reſidence. He was alſo knight of the ſhire for this county, in the ſecond year of Richard II.

HERE is another tomb, with a figure in ſtone, ſuppoſed to have been that of one of the Walſhes, the antient lords of this manor. His figure, as well as the former, is recumbent, with their hands in the action of ſupplication: but this gentleman has a ſhort ſkirt over the lower part of his armour.

THE antient name of this place was Alſpath, or Aileſpede, even till the beginning of the reign of Henry VI; about which time, becoming a great thoroughfare, it got the name of Myreden; den ſignifying a bottom, and myre, dirt: and I can well vouch for the propriety of the appellation, before the inſtitution of turnpikes.

IN March 1739-40, I changed my Welſh ſchool for one nearer to the capital, [Note: OLD FASHION OF TRAVELLING.] and travelled in the Cheſter ſtage; then no deſpicable vehicle for country gentlemen. The firſt day, with much labor, we got from Cheſter to Whichurch, twenty miles; the ſecond day, to the Welſh Harp; the third, to Coventry; the fourth, to Northampton; the fifth, to Dunſtable; and, as a wonderous effort, on the laſt, to London before the commencement of night. The ſtrain and labor of ſix good horſes, ſometimes eight, drew us through the ſloughs of Mireden, and many other places. We were conſtantly out two hours before day, and as late at night; and in the depth of winter proportionably later.

Families which travelled in their own carriages, contracted with Benſon and Co. and were dragged up in the ſame number of days, by three ſets of able horſes.

[Page 138] THE ſingle gentlemen, then a hardy race, equipped in jackboots and trowſers, up to their middle, rode poſt through thick and thin, and, guarded againſt the mire, defied the frequent ſtumble and fall; aroſe and purſued their journey with alacrity: while in theſe days their enervated poſterity ſleep away their rapid journies in eaſy chaiſes, fitted for the conveyance of the ſoft inhabitants of Sybaris.

I CONTINUED my way to Coventry through Alleſey, [Note: ALLESEY.] a village with a church and ſpire-ſteeple. The place was originally a member of that city, Biſhop Clinton having permitted a chapel to be built here for the uſe of the poor, reſerving the right of burial to the mother church *. In a place called The Parks, ſtood a caſtle, doubly moated, probably the reſidence of the Haſtings, who poſſeſſed this place in the time of Edward I. The preſent handſome ſeat is owned by — Neale, Eſquire.

AFTER a ride of two miles from hence, [Note: COVENTRY.] I entered Coventry, a great and antient city. The time of its foundation is unknown. By the addition of tre, a town, it ſhould ſeem as if it had been inhabited by the Britons, before the Saxons added the word coven to it, as is conjectured, from a nunnery very antiently eſtabliſhed here. The ſite of the old town is ſuppoſed to have been on the north ſide of the preſent, not only becauſe great foundations are diſcovered about the ſpot called St. Nicholas Church-yard, but, I may add, from the tumulus near it, on the Atherſton road, called Barrs Hill, on which might have been a caſtelet.

THE certainty of there having been a convent here in the early times, [Note: SAXON NUNNERY.] depends on the authority of John Rous who ſays, that [Page 139] when the traitor Edric ravaged this country, in 1016, he burnt the nunnery in this city, of which a holy virgin, St. Oſburg, had been abbeſs.

ON its ruins, Leofric, fifth earl of Mercia, and his counteſs Godeva, founded a monaſtery. At that period Coventry muſt have been a conſiderable place, and its number of inhabitants great, otherwiſe the fair Godeva could never have made ſo great a merit of riding naked through the town, [Note: STORY OF GODEVA.] to redeem it from the intolerable taxes and grievances it at that time labored under. The cauſe muſt have been equal to the deed. Her huſband long reſiſted her importunity in its behalf, on account of the profits that accrued to him: at length thought to ſilence her by the ſtrange propoſal: ſhe accepted it, and, being happy in fine flowing locks, rode, decently covered to her very feet with her lovely treſſes. The hiſtory was preſerved in a picture, about the time of Richard II. in which were portrayed the earl and counteſs. He holds a charter of freedom in his hand, and thus addreſſes his lady:

I Luriche (Leofric) for love of thee,
Doe make Coventre toll-free.

Legend ſays, that previous to her ride, all the inhabitants were ordered, on pain of death, to ſhut themſelves up during the time; but that the curioſity of a certain taylor, overcoming fear, took a ſingle peep; which is commemorated even at preſent, by a figure looking out of a wall in the great ſtreet. To this day, the love of Godeva to the city is annually remembered, by a proceſſion; and a valiant fair ſtill rides (not literally like the good counteſs) but in ſilk, cloſely fitted to her limbs, and of color emulating their complexion.

[Page 140] AFTER the Conqueſt, [Note: NORMAN OWNERS.] the lordſhip of this city fell, by the marriage of Lucia (daughter to Algar, ſucceſſor and ſon of Edwin, and grandſon of Leofric) with her third huſband Randle Meſchine, to the earls of Cheſter *. Randle beſtowed on it the ſame privileges that Linſda enjoyed, and beſtowed great part of the city on the monks. When Henry III. took the earldom of Cheſter into his hands, the remainder of Coventry fell to William de Albany earl of Arundel, in right of his wife Mabil, daughter of Hugh Cevelio [...]. On the death of Hugh earl of Arundel, in 1243, it fell to Roger de Montalto, who had married Cecilia, his youngeſt ſiſter. After that, it was granted by his grandſon Robert, in default of iſſue, to Iſabel, queen mother of Edward III. with remainder to John of Eltham, afterwards earl of Cornwall; and then to Edward king of England. It thus became annexed to the earldom of Cornwall, [Note: INCORPORATED.] and became more immediately the object of royal favor. Edward III. in the eighteenth of his reign, by letters dated the 20th of January, made it a corporation, conſiſting of a mayor and two bailiffs, whom the inhabitants were to chuſe out of themſelves. The firſt mayor was John Ward, who was choſen in the year 1348.

Henry VI. in 1451, beſtowed on this city a very particular mark of his affection, by erecting it, with a conſiderable diſtrict around, [Note: MADE A COUNTY.] into a county, by the name of the city and county of Coventry; and ordered that the bailiffs from that time ſhould be ſheriffs: ſo that at preſent, it is governed by a mayor, recorder, two ſheriffs, ten aldermen, thirty-one ſuperior and twenty-five inferior common-council-men. [Page 141] Henry came expreſsly to Coventry, heard maſs in St. Michael's church, preſented the church with a gown of cloth of gold, and then created the firſt ſheriffs.

THE repreſentatives are choſen by the citizens paying ſcot and lot, and are returned by the ſheriffs. The city ſent members the four firſt parlements of Edward I. That privilege was interrupted (except the eighth of Edward II. and twentieth and twenty-fifth of Edward III.) till the thirty-firſt of Henry VI. when it was reſumed.

AMONG all its privileges, unfortunately for the magiſtrates, it has that of life and death.

Two parlements have been held in this city, [Note: PARLEMENTS HELD HERE.] in the great chamber of the priory. The firſt, in 1404, by Henry IV. which was ſtiled Parliamentum indoctorum; not that it conſiſted of a greater number of blockheads than parlements ordinarily do, but from its inveteracy againſt the clergy, whoſe revenues it was determined not to ſpare: whence it was alſo called the Laymen's Parlement.

THE other was held in the chapter-houſe of the priory, in 1459, by Henry VI. and was called Parliamentum diabolicum, by reaſon of the multitude of attainders paſſed againſt Richard Duke of York, and his adherents.

THE trade of this city was originally the manufacture of cloth, [Note: TRADE, CLOTH.] and caps, or bonnets *, which aroſe to a great degree of conſequence, as early as 1436, and continued till the laſt century, when it was changed for the worſted buſineſs; and, for a long time, the making and ſale of ſhags, camblets, laſtings, tammies, &c. [Page 142] &c. proved a very extenſive and profitable trade; but this gradually migrated into Leiceſterſhire and Northamptonſhire; and at preſent, only a few articles, ſuch as camblets and laſtings, conſtitute the woollen trade.

I MUST remark, that in the beginning, or middle, [Note: BLUE THREAD.] of the ſixteenth century, Coventry had a vaſt manufacture of blue thread; which was loſt before the year 1581 *. So famous was it for its dye, that true as Coventry blue became proverbial.

ABOUT eighty years ago, [Note: RIBANDS.] the ſilk manufacture of ribands was introduced here, and, for the firſt thirty years, remained in the hands of a few people, who acquired vaſt fortunes; ſince which, it has extended to a great degree, and is ſuppoſed to employ at left ten thouſand people; and has likewiſe ſpread into the neighboring towns, ſuch as Nuneaton, and other places. Such real good reſults from our little vanities!

THERE are about a dozen traders in Coventry, who have houſes in London; to which they ſend up weekly great quantities of ribands; and, before our unhappy breach with America, a very extenſive trade was carried on with the colonies: but the home-conſumption has been always reckoned moſt material. A few ribands are exported to Spain, Portugal, and Ruſſia; but the French underſell us at thoſe markets.

WITHIN theſe few years, four or five houſes have begun to introduce the making of gauzes; and for that purpoſe chiefly, employ hands from Scotland. This branch is at preſent in its infancy. Another of broad ſilks was likewiſe ſet up, which, I am ſorry to find, does not go on with the expected ſucceſs.

[Page 143] THE military tranſactions of this city are very few. It was an open town for many centuries, and, of courſe, incapable of ſuſtaining a ſiege. The walls were not begun till the year 1355, [Note: WALLS.] and then by virtue of a licence granted by Edward III. twenty-ſeven years before; nor were they finiſhed in leſs than forty. They were built by money raiſed by taxes, and by cuſtoms on the wine, malt, oxen, hogs, calves, and ſheep, conſumed in Coventry. Theſe walls were of great ſtrength and grandeur, furniſhed with thirty-two towers and twelve gates. Theſe continued till the 22d of July 1661, when great part of the wall, and moſt of the towers, and many of the gates, were pulled down, with certain circumſtances of diſgrace, as a puniſhment for the diſloyalty of the inhabitants, in ſhutting their gates againſt their monarch Charles I. on the 13th of Auguſt 1642. His majeſty, after ſetting up his ſtandard at Nottingham, had ſent to this city, to acquaint them that he meant to reſide there for ſome time, and deſired quarters for his forces in and about the place. The mayor and aldermen, with many expreſſions of affection, offered to receive the king, but refuſed admittance to any of the ſoldiery. Incenſed at this, his majeſty attacked the city, [Note: CITY ATTACKED BY CHARLES I.] and with his ordnance forced open one of the gates; but was repulſed by the valour of the citizens, and obliged to retire with loſs *. In the following month Coventry was regularly garriſoned by the parlement , and remained in its poſſeſſion during the whole war.

I SHOULD have mentioned before, that in the fifteenth century another monarch had been denied the poſſeſſion of this city. The great Earl of Warwick armed it againſt Edward IV. in 1470, [Page 144] when he attempted entering on the ſide of Gosford Green. The king amply repaid the inſult on the citizens, who perhaps acted by conſtraint. He deprived them of their privileges, and made them pay five hundred marks for the recovering of them, by having the ſword reſtored to them.

BEFORE the building of the walls, [Note: CASTLE.] there had been, from very early times, a caſtle on the ſouth ſide of the town, near Chyleſmore, with a park belonging to it. This had been the reſidence of the kings and earls of Mercia: it afterwards fell to the earls of Cheſter, and at length was veſted in the royal line. No veſtige of it is now to be ſeen: in its place is a very antient wooden building, the remains of the manor-houſe of Chyleſmore, probably built after the demolition of the caſtle.

KING Stephen forcibly took this fortreſs from Randle de Gernons earl of Cheſter. The earl, in 1146, attempted to reduce it, not by ſiege, but by erecting a fort near it, in order to diſtreſs the garriſon, by cutting off ſupplies. The king twice attempted its relief; the firſt time without ſucceſs, but in the ſecond action he defeated the earl; forced him to fly, covered with wounds; [Note: DEMOLISHED.] and then demoliſhed the caſtle *.

I SHALL take notice of the eccleſiaſtical hiſtory, churches, remains of religious houſes, and the public buildings, in the courſe of my walk about the city, in which I was accompanied by the Reverend Doctor Edwards; whoſe hoſpitality and politeneſs I have more than once had occaſion to experience.

Coventry is ſeated on ground gently ſloping on moſt ſides: [Note: CITY DESCRIBED.] its length, from Hillſtreet-gate to Gosford-gate, is about three quarters [Page 145] of a mile, excluſive of the ſuburbs. The ſtreets in general are narrow, and compoſed of very antient buildings, the ſtories of which, in ſome, impend one over the other in ſuch a manner, as nearly to meet at top, and exclude the ſight of the ſky. By the appearance of the whole, it is very evident that it never under [...]ent the calamity of fire; which, deprecated as it ought to be, is uſually the cauſe of future improvement.

THE number of inhabitants, taken at different periods, [Note: NUMBERS.] in the laſt two hundred years, is very different. Before 1549, they were found to have been 15,000; but on that violent convulſion, the Diſſolution, trade grew ſo low, and occaſioned ſuch a diſperſion of people from this city, as to reduce them to 3,000. To remedy this evil, Edward VI. granted the city a charter for an additional fair. To this cauſe perhaps was owing the increaſe, by the year 1586, to 6502. In 1644, when the inhabitants were [...]umbered, from the apprehenſion of a ſiege, they were found to amount to 9,500 *. By Bradford's Survey of Coventry, made in 1748 and 1749, there appears to have been 2,065 houſes, and 1211, people. The accounts at preſent vary from 20,000 to [...]0,000; but, from my enquiries, the middle ſum between both may come neareſt the truth.

THE city is watered by the Radford and the Sherborn brooks, which, from N. and S. meet within the walls, and, after a ſhort [...], bound the north-eaſtern parts without the walls.

WE began our progreſs from the Cheſter road, [Note: SPONNE HOSPITAL, FOR LEPERS.] on the weſtern ſide of the city, at the reliques of Sponne hoſpital, conſiſting of the chapel and gateway. It was founded for the lepers which [Page 146] happened to be in Coventry, by Hugh Ceveilioc earl of Cheſter, out of affection to William de Auney, a knight of his houſhold, afflicted with the leproſy. Here was alſo a prieſt, to pray both for the living and the dead; alſo certain brethren and ſiſters, to pray, with the lepers, for the good eſtate of all their benefactors. This hoſpital is ſaid once to have belonged to the abbey of Baſingwerk, in Flintſhire; but at length was appropriated to the monk [...] of Coventry, from whom it paſſed to the crown, in the time of Edward IV; who gave it to the canons of Studley, in order to obtain their prayers for him, and all his connections.

THAT loathſome diſorder, which gave riſe to this, [Note: [...] APPEARANCE IN ENGLAND.] and number [...] of other ſimilar foundations, was introduced into England in the reign of Henry I. and was ſuppoſed to have been brought out of Egypt, or perhaps the eaſt, by means of the cruſades. To add to the horror, it was contagious; which enhanced the charity of a proviſion for ſuch miſerables, who were not only naturally ſhunned, but even chaced by royal edict, from the ſociety of their fellow-creatures *. All the leſſer Lazar houſes in England were ſubject to the rich houſe at Burton, in Leiceſterſhire, which again was ſubject to that in Jeruſalem. They were uſually dedicated to St. Lazarus, from whom they derived their name.

Figure 3. SPONNE GATE.

IMMEDIATELY within the walls, on the left, ſtands the church of St. John, [Note: CHURCH OF ST. JOHN.] a very handſome building, with a neat but not lofty tower, placed in the centre: the inſide is in form of a croſs, interſected by a ſhort tranſept: the windows high, and form a long range, with very narrow diviſions. This church was originally a chapel to the merchants gild, the moſt antient in Coventry, licenſed by Edward III. in 1340, for a fraternity of brethren and ſiſters, with a warden, or maſter, to be elected out of the body; who might make chauntries, beſtow alms, and do other works of piety; conſtitute ordinances, and purchaſe lands to the value of £20 a year, within the liberty of the city, for the founding of a chauntry of ſix prieſts, to ſing maſs every day in the churches of the holy Trinity and St. Michael, for the ſoul of king Edward, queen Philippa, their children, and for the ſouls of the gild, and others. Soon after, Iſabel, queen-mother, aſſigned the land on this ſpot, then called Bablake, for the building a chapel, in which maſſes were to be ſung daily for the ſame purpoſes; which was finiſhed and dedicated in 1350. At length, in 1399, licence was given for celebrating divine ſervice here, provided it might be done without injury to the mother-church *.

ON the diſſolution, its revenues were found to be £111. 13s. 8d. and that they ſupported a warden and eight prieſts, who had chambers in the precinct; a maſter of a grammar-ſchool, two ſinging-clerks, and two ſinging-boys, and ſeveral poor men, who had been brethren of the gild. The church has of late years [Page 148] been rebuilt; made a rectory by act of parlement, in 1734, and ſettled on the maſter of the free-ſchool of Coventry *.

BEHIND this church is Bablake hoſpital, [Note: BABLAKE HOSPITAL.] an old building, with a court in the middle: one part is occupied by Bond's alms-houſes, founded in 1506, by Thomas Bond, mayor of Coventry in 1497, for ten poor men and one poor woman, with a prieſt to pray for the ſoul of the founder, his grandfather, father, and all Chriſtian ſouls. At that time the revenues were £49. 11s. 7d. In the firſt of Edward VIth's time, they were veſted in the city; and, the revenues being improved, at preſent they maintain eighteen old men and a nurſe, each of whom have three ſhillings a week, a black gown, and other emoluments . About the year 1619, an infernal ambition of becoming chief of the houſe, ſeized one of the alms-men; who, to attain his end, poiſoned eight of his brethren; five of whom inſtantly died. On detection, the wretch effected his own deſtruction by the ſame method, and was buried with the uſual marks of infamy. Had his fortune flung him into a higher ſtation, his deeds would have paralleled him with Ceſar Borgia, or his more monſtrous father, Pope Alexander VI.

THE other part of the building is allotted for the blue boys: a foundation owing to a very ſingular accident. Mr. Thomas Wheatly, mayor of Coventry in 1556, and ironmonger and cardmaker by trade, ſent his ſervant, Oughton, to Spain, to buy ſome barrels of ſteel gads; which he thought he did, in open fair. When they were brought home and examined, they were found to contain cochineal and ingots of ſilver. Mr. Wheatly kept them for a conſiderable time, in hopes of diſcovering the owner; [Page 149] for his ſervant did not know from whom he bought them. At length he applied the profits, as well as much of his own eſtate, for the ſupport of poor children.

FROM thence my walk was continued along the weſt ſide of the city, [Note: CANAL.] to Biſhopgate-ſtreet. A little without is the head of the great canal, which, paſſing by the neighboring collieries at Hawkeſbury, is to extend to Brinklow, Hill-Morton, Branſton in Northamptonſhire, return into Warwickſhire, and, after paſſing by Banbury, conclude at Oxford *. By another branch, likewiſe begun near to Coventry, it is to paſs by Atherſton and Tamworth, and to unite with the great Staffordſhire canal on Eradley heath, three miles N. E. of Lichfield . which, by means of the Stour Port canal, would have become the uniting ſpot of the commerce of Thames, the Severn, and the Trent, had Britain flouriſhed in the manner it did when theſe vaſt deſigns were undertaken, in the full intoxication of its proſperity. At preſent it is only finiſhed as far as Atherſton.

AT the lower end of this ſtreet is the free-ſchool: it ſprung out of an hoſpital, [Note: FREE SCHOOL.] founded in the beginning of the reign of Henry II. by Laurence, prior of Coventry, and his convent, at the requeſt of Edmund, archdeacon of Coventry, for the reception of the ſick and needy. At the diſſolution, John Hales, a gentleman [Page 150] who had large ſhare in the plunder of the church, and having neither wife or child, converted this foundation, which he had purchaſed at a very cheap rate, into a free ſchool, and endowed it with CC marks a year in land. At firſt, the boys were inſtructed in the church of the White Friers; but the magiſtrates finding that Mr. Hales had bought the lands but not the church, took advantage of the flaw, and removed the ſcholars to the preſent place, and pulled down the church *. The chapel, now reduced to one aile, is the preſent ſchool; and the maſter reſides in the houſe belonging to the antient maſter of the hoſpital. The ſchool has alſo a library belonging to it.

PASS by Cookſtreet Gate, on the outſide of the city, and a little further, by the Three Virgins, or Priory Gate, between which there is a complete part of the wall. On the outſide was a paved road, in imitation of the military way from turret to turret on the famed wall of Severus: and beſides, here were four others, which went a mile each way from the city.

AT a ſmall diſtance without the Priory Gate, is Swanſwell Pool, which ſupplies the city with water. This did belong to the priory, but was at the diſſolution purchaſed by the corporation from the crown .

FROM hence I returned to the priory, [Note: PRIORY.] ſeated on the ſouth ſide of the brook Sherburn. What bears that name is an uninhabited houſe, of much later date than that monaſtery; but built on ſome part of the ſite of this great foundation.

ABOUT the year 1043, earl Leofric and his fair counteſs more than repaired the loſs in 1016, in the deſtruction of the famous [Page 151] Saxon nunnery, by founding in its ſtead a magnificent monaſtery. They placed here an abbot, and twenty-four monks of the Benedictine order; enriched the very walls and the church with maſſy gold and ſilver, and endowed it with half the town and twenty-four manors. All this they did with the advice of king Edward the Confeſſor and the reigning pope, and dedicated the church to the honor of God and his bleſſed mother, St. Peter, St. Oſburg, and all ſaints. The pious founders were buried, according to the cuſtom of the times, in the porches; for the diſtaſteful cuſtom of church interment did not prevale till long after.

THE firſt abbot was Leofrin; but that dignity was of ſhort duration, for, on the removal of the ſee of Lichfield to this place, in 1095, by Robert de Limiſie, the office was ſuppreſſed, the biſhop being in ſuch caſes always eſteemed ſupreme of the houſe * in his ſtead; a prior was appointed, but without derogating from the honor of the houſe; for the priors were barons in parlement as well as the preceding abbots, and the place a mitred abbey. This firſt prelate was more attracted by the wealth of the houſe than by any ſpiritual call; for he at once ſcraped from a ſingle beam five hundred marks worth of ſilver, in order to carry on the intrigue at Rome againſt the poor monks. He reduced them to ſuch ſhort commons, that he depreſſed their ſpirits, diſcouraged all ſorts of knowlege among them, and, in ſhort, rendered them too dejected to think of obtaining any redreſs.

THIS was a prelude to greater misfortunes. In the latter end of the following century, Hugh Novani, a Norman, became biſhop. He ſoon fell at variance with the monks; who, in a ſynod held [Page 152] before the high altar, doubtleſs on ſome high provocation, broke his head with the holy croſs. ‘Tantaene animis caeleſtibus irae!’

This enraged the proud prelate (as he was called by thoſe meek monks) to lay his complaint againſt them at Rome. The pope attended to it, expelled the antient inhabitants, and placed in their room a ſet of ſecular canons. The monks, now driven into the wild world, had only the ſatisfaction of ſeeing their perſecutor ſtruck with deep remorſe; for, in 1198, lying on his death-bed, in the abbey of Bec, in Normandy, he was ſeized with fierce horrors at his conduct towards thoſe holy men; implored forgiveneſs, and deſired their interceſſion with the Almighty in his behalf. He requeſted to be buried in the habit of the order, that he might receive the benefit of its protection in the other world, and finally conſigned himſelf to purgatory, ibi in diem judicii cruciandus.

LUCKILY at the time of this event, Thomas, a monk of Coventry, happened to be at Rome ſoliciting the cauſe of his brethren: he ſo enraged Innocent III. (then pope) by his importunities, as to order him to withdraw. The poor monk, with tears, replied, ‘Another pope will come, to whom I ſhall not ſue in vain. I therefore will patiently wait your death, as I have that of your two predeceſſors.’ "Here is a devil of a fellow" (ſays his Holineſs, in high wrath, to his attendants) ‘by St. Peter! He ſhall not wait for my death; ſo I will not put him off any longer, but make out the purpoſe of his petition before I put a morſel more into my mouth *.’

[Page 153] THIS troubleſome affair ended, they were replaced with double advantage; their privileges, as if by way of atonement for their ſhort ſufferings, increaſed beyond all reaſon; for in the time of Edward III. they obtained, that they and their tenants, except thoſe who held by knight ſervice more than half a knight's ſee, ſhould be quit of murder, robbery, ſuit to the county or hundred courts, aid to the ſheriffs, view of frankpledge, and repair of the king's caſtles or pools *. Reign after reign they received freſh emoluments; ſo that in the end it became poſſeſſed of revenues to the amount of £731. 19s. 5d. or, after repriſes, £499. 7s. 4d .

AMONG the ſacred furniture was an image of the Virgin Mary, adorned with a chain of gold enriched with gems, beſtowed by the Counteſs Godeva on her death-bed: to which the devotees were to ſay as many prayers as there were in it precious ſtones.

AND beſides this, an arm of St. Auguſtine of Hippo, which Agelnethus, archbiſhop of Canterbury, in 1020, bought at Rome from the pope, for the ſmall ſum of C talents of ſilver, and one of gold .

BUT even this arm had not power to ward off the blow given by the more irreſiſtible one of Henry VIII; who, not content with the expulſion of its inhabitants, and ſeizure of the revenues, directed this noble pile to be levelled with the ground; which he did, notwithſtanding the earneſt prayers of its biſhop, Rowland Lee, one of his moſt ſervile tools. A deed equally wanton and impious!

[Page 154] THE loſs is the more to be regretted, as this cathedral is ſuppoſed to have been built on the model of that of Lichfield, and equally beautiful. Nothing remains except a fragment, conſtituting part of a private houſe, to be ſeen with difficulty, and after ſome ſearch. The palace ſtood between the priory and Saint Michael's, and was ſold in 1651, for its materials, to Nathaniel Lacy and Obadiah Chambers, for the ſum of an hundred guineas. The laſt prior, Thomas Camſel, in 1538, was prevaled on to make a ſurrender of the houſe, either through fear of death, for withſtanding the tyrant's pleaſure, or through lucre of penſion; for he had not leſs than £133. 6s. 8d. annuity, beſides other allowances to the monks *. The ſite was then granted to John Combes and Richard Stansfield, after flouriſhing under monaſtic government above five hundred years.

WHEN the cathedral was ſtanding, Coventry poſſeſſed a matchleſs group of churches, all ſtanding within one coemetery. [Note: ST. MICHAEL'S CHURCH.] Saint Michael's at preſent is a ſpecimen of the moſt beautiful ſteeple in Europe: a tower enriched with faintly figures on the ſides; an octagon riſing out of it, and that lengthened into a moſt elegant ſpire. Every part is ſo finely proportionable, that it is no wonder that Sir Chriſtopher Wren ſpoke of it as a maſterpiece of architecture. The outſide is extremely handſome; the inſide light and lofty, conſiſting of a body and two ailes, divided by four rows of high and airy pillars and arches. The height of the ſteeple and length of the church are the ſame, three hundred and three feet; the width of the latter an hundred and four.

[Page 155] IN king Stephen's time, this church was a chapel to the monks; became afterwards a vicarage, and on the diſſolution fell to the gift of the crown. This, Trinity, and St. John's, form the pariſhes of this great city; ſo numerous are the diſſenters.

ITS beautiful ſteeple was begun in the reign of Edward III. in 1372, by two brothers, Adam and William Bota, at their own charges, which amounted annually to one hundred pounds; nor was it finiſhed in leſs than twenty years. By the ſtile of architecture, I agree with Sir William Dugdale, that the preſent body was built in the reign of Henry VI. Some ornament was alſo added to the ſteeple at the ſame time. Coventry ſeems to have been particularly favored by Henry, or, to ſpeak more properly of that meek prince, by the heroine Margaret; for this city uſed to be ſtiled the ſecret harbour of that queen.

TRINITY church, and its ſpire, would be ſpoken of as a moſt beautiful building, was it not eclipſed by its unfortunate vicinity to St. Michael's. Within are two epitaphs, which I give for their ſingularity. One is on Philemon Holland, the famous tranſlator. He was ſchool-maſter and phyſician in the city. A wag made this diſtich on one of his labors:

Philemon with tranſlations doth ſo fill us,
He will not let Suetonius be Tranquillus.

HE was called tranſlator-general of his age; acquired much credit by his fidelity, but none greater than by his tranſlation of Cambden, in that great antiquarian's life-time, and by his conſent; to whoſe work he made conſiderable additions.

HE wrote a great folio with one pen, and, as he tells us, did not wear it out.

[Page 156]
With one ſole pen I writ this book,
Made of a grey gooſe quill:
A pen it was when it I took;
A pen I leave it ſtill *.

AT length (if I may be allowed to pun with Fuller) death tranſlated this tranſlator to the other world, in 1636, at the good old age of eighty-five; leaving behind this epitaph of his own compoſition.

Nemo habet hic, nemo'? hoſpes ſalveto, Philemon
Holland hâc recubat ritè repoſtus humo:
Si quaeras ratio quaenam ſit nominis, haec eſt,
Totus terra fui, terraque totus ero:
At redivivus morte tua ſervabor, Ieſu,
Una ſides votis, haec eſt via ſola ſalutis
Hâc ſpe fretus ego, culpâ poenaque ſolutus
Jamque renatus, et inde novo conſpectus amictu,
Coetu in ſanctorum poſt redimitus ero.
Claudicat inceſſu ſenior mea muſa, videſne?
Claudatur capulo mecum ſimul ipſa, valeto. Valedictio
Ad liberos et nepotes ſuperſtites.
Dantque omnes unâ dudum de ſtirpe creati
Henrice ah! ſeptem de fratribus une ſuperſtes
Orphanici patris Gulielmi nuper adempti
Et mihi (bis puero) nutricis Anna, Maria
Cumque tuis angelis Elizabeta; valete .

THE other commemorates a Captain Gervas Scrope, written; as the proem tells you, in the agony and dolorous pains of the gout, ſoon before his death.

[Page 157]
Here lies an old tennis-ball,
Was racketted from ſpring to fall,
With ſo much heat and ſo much haſte,
Time's arm for ſhame grew tir'd at laſt.
Four kings in camps he truly ſerv'd,
And from his loyalty ne'er ſwerv'd,
Father ruin'd, the ſon ſlighted,
And from the crown ne'er recruited.
Loſs of eſtate, relations, blood,
Was too well known, but did no good,
With long campaigns, and pains of gout,
He could no longer hold it out.
Always a reſtleſs life he led;
Never at quiet till quite dead.
He married, in his latter days,
One who exceeds the common praiſe;
But wanting breath ſtill to make known
Her true affection and his own,
Death timely came, all wants ſupply'd,
By giving reſt, which life deny'd.

ON leaving of theſe churches, I ſurveyed with indignation, ſuch as antiquaries experience, the ſite of the elegant and antient croſs, till of late years ſuch an ornament to the city. [Note: CROSS.] I am not furniſhed with an apology for the corporation who deſtroyed this beautiful building; ſo muſt leave it doubtful, whether the gothic reſolution was the reſult of want of money, or want of taſte. In 1629, the city paid it ſuch reſpect, as to expend £323. 4s. 6d. in its repair *.

IT was built, or rather begun, in 1541, to replace another [Page 158] croſs, taken down ſome years before. The founder was Sir William Hollies, lord mayor of London, and ſon of Thomas Hollies of Stoke, near this city, who left by his will two hundred pounds towards the deſign. The baſe was hexangular, finely ornamented with gothic ſculpture; above, roſe three ſtories of moſt light and elegant tabernacle-work, leſſening to the ſummit. In the niches were ſaints and Engliſh monarchs, from Henry II. to Henry V. and around each ſtory variety of pretty figures with flags, with the arms of England or the roſe of Lancaſter expreſſed on them: and on the ſummit of the uppermoſt plate Juſtice, and other gracious attributes.

A LITTLE ſouth of St. Michael's, [Note: ST. MARY HALL.] ſtands St. Mary Hall, at preſent uſed for corporation-aſſemblies. This place was built in the beginning of the reign of Henry VI: a venerable pile, whoſe entrance is beneath a large gateway, over which are the figures of a king and queen ſitting; probably Henry and his conſort Margaret. Within this building is a fine old room: in the upper end is a noble ſemicircular window, divided into nine parts, elegantly painted with figures of ſeveral of our monarchs, with coats of arms and ornaments, but now very imperfect: thoſe in the windows on the one ſide are loſt; ſeveral of thoſe on the other are entire, and were deſigned to repreſent ſome of our great nobility, who had honored this hall with their preſence as brothers and ſiſters of the gild, for whoſe uſe this hall was founded. This had been the gild of St. Katherine, eſtabliſhed by certain citizens of Coventry, in 1343, by licence of Edward III; after which it was united to thoſe of the Holy Trinity, Our Lady, and Saint John the Baptiſt.

THE illuſtrious perſonages repreſented here, are William Beauchamp, [Page 159] lord of Abergavenny, and fourth ſon to Thomas Earl of Warwick; and by him is his counteſs Jean, daughter of Richard Earl of Arundel.

Richard Beauchamp Earl of Warwick, and his ſecond wife Iſabella, daughter of Thomas Lord D' Eſpencer; Humphry Earl of Stafford, with a battle-ax in his hand; and one of the John Mo [...]rays Dukes of Norfolk. All thoſe great men are dreſſed with the magnificence and luxury of the eaſt, in long robes lined with ermine, and with large and ſingular hoods. Theſe were the garments of peace, when they paſſed the feſtive day in honor of their fraternity.

ALONG the walls are ranged a number of Latin verſes, with a [...]ort of Ste [...]nhold tranſlation oppoſite. I ſhall only give the laſt, as Doctor Stukely has already preſerved the former in his Itinerary.

Edward the floure of chivalre, whileſome the Black Prynce hyghre,
Who priſoner tooke the French king John, in claime of grandames right;
And ſlew the kyng of Bram [...] in field, whereby the oſtrich penn
He won, and w [...]re on creſt here firſt; which poeſie bare Ich Dien▪
[...]n [...]d their martial ſeats of arms, wherein he had no peere,
His countie eke to ſhew this ſeate he choſe and lov'd full d [...]e [...].
The former ſtate he g [...] confirmed, and freedom did encreaſe
[...] preſident of knyghthood rare, as well for warre as peace.
[...] time that firſt this antient town Earl Leofrike feoffed free,
[...] ſuite and merit ſtrange, or elſe it could not bee.
In princes grace by long deſcent, as old recordes do date,
It ſtood manteind, until at length it grew to cities ſtate.
Quene Iſabel, ſole heire of Fraunce, great favor hither caſte,
And did procure large fraunchiſes by charter ay to laſt.
[...] therefore, in loialtie our ſelves, and all wee have,
[...] Elizabeth, our ladie liege; whom God in mercy ſave.
[Page 160]
When [...] once to fade, and commonwealth decay,
No [...] in cities great; for what endureth aye?
John, late Duke of Northumberland *, a prince of high degree,
Did graunt [...] lands for commons weale, as here in braſs you ſee.
And Leiceſter [...] great affairs▪ whereto high place doth call,
His father's worthy ſteps hath traced to prop, that his might fall
On [...]oth i [...] p [...]ce and countrie's [...] hold forth this courſe your days:
Such dee [...] do [...]o [...]e bloud comm [...]nd, ſuch bring mortal praiſe.

IN the apartments of this building are held the balls and aſſemblies of this city. In one of the drawing-rooms is to be ſeen, in high preſervation, an antiquity equally delicate and curious; an unique, which Coventry alone has the happineſs of poſſeſſing. Here it is known by the name of The Lady's Spoon, but is doubtleſs no other than the S [...]ph [...]m of the antients, deſcribed by Coelius Rhs [...]nus and [...], Rerum [...]morab [...] deperd .

THE front of the Drapiers Hall is very elegant, [Note: DRAPIER [...] HALL.] ornamented with Tuſ [...]an pi [...]aſters, and does much [...]edit to the city. It was lately rebuilt on the ſite of the antient hall, [...]ounded by certain drapiers, whoſe n [...]mes have long ſince periſhed.

Figure 4. GREY FRIERS GATE and STEEPLE COVENTRY.

THOSE friars were celebrated for their annual exhibitions of the [...] ſtories called Corpus Chriſti plays, [Note: CORPUS CHRISTI PLAYS.] which they performed on that day, to their great emolument, before crowds of ſpectators. [...] [...]orted hither at that ſeaſon from all parts. Like Theſpis of old, they are recorded ‘Plauſtris vexiſſe poemata.’

[...] have gone to the moſt advantageous parts of the city, [...] po [...]table theatres drawn on wheeled carriages, from which [...] exhibited their pageants, which amounted to forty. The [...]ubjects are announced in a ſort of prologue, by a perſon called [...] or, who probably carried a flag painted with the ſubject of the day, and at the ſame time gave out to the crowd the hiſ [...] [...] was to expect. The hiſtory is taken up at the creation, [...] [...]ds with the laſt day. I have ſaid much of theſe religious [...] in my Weſh Tour * therefore will not peſter the reader [...] preſent with more than Eve's rhetoric, after being tempted by [Page 162] the ſerpent, to perſuade poor Adam to taſte of the forbidden [...].

My ſemely ſpouſe and good huſbond,
Lyſtenyth to me ſer, I ȝow pray;
Take þis [...]ayr appyl all in ȝow hond,
Þerof a murſel byte & aſay
To ete this appyl loke that ȝe [...]ond
Goddys felaw to be alway;
All his wiſdom to undyrſtonde,
And Goddys p [...]r to be for ay.
All thyng for to make,
Both [...]yſch & ſoule, ſe & ſond,
Byrd & beſt, waty [...] & lond,
Þis appyl you take out of myn hond
A bete herof you take *.

Henry VIII. put an end to the performances of theſe poor friars, who had the honor of falling with the greater monaſteries having eſcaped the wreck of the leſſer, becauſe they had nothing worth ſei [...]ing to gratify that rapacious court. But the king, net content with their ruin, added to it the mortifying obligation of making their ſurrender on the 5th of October 1538, and to ſign it with their names and common ſeal. The inſtrument is curiou [...] and worthy peruſal.

‘For as moche as we the wardens and freers of the houſe of Say [...] Frances in Coventre, commonly callyd the Grey Freers in Coventre, in the county of Warwick, doo profoundly conſider, that the perfection of Chriſtian livynge dothe not conſi [...]t [...] [Page 163] [...]me ceremonies, werynge of a grey coot, diſgeaſinge our ſelfe [...] ſtrau [...]ge faſſions, do kynge, noddynge, and beckyng, in gu [...]rdyng our ſelves wythe a gurdle fulle of knotts, & other like papiſticall ceremonies, wherein we have ben mooſte principally practiſed and miſlyd in tymes paſte; but the very true waye to pleſe God, and to live a tru Chriſtian mon, wytheout all ypo [...] and fayned diſeimulation, is ſinceerly declared unto us by our Mr. Chriſte, his evangeliſts and apoſtles; being myndyd hereafter to followe the ſame, conformynge our ſelf unto the will and pleſure of our ſupreme hedde under God in erthe, the kynges majeſtie, and not to folowe henſeforth die ſuperſti [...]us traditions of any forinſecall potentate or peere; wythe mu [...]il aſſent and conſent do ſurrendre and yelde up into the [...]ondes of the ſame all our ſeide houſe of Saynt Frances, in the [...] of Coventre, commonly callyd the Grey Freers in Coventre, wythe alſo the londs, tenements, gardens, medows, waters, [...]diards, fedings, paſtures, comens, rents, reverſions, & alle other our intereſt, ryghtes, or titles appertaining unto the [...]ame: mooſte humbly beſeechinge his mooſte noble grace to [...] of us, and of the ſame, as beſte ſhall ſtonde wythe his [...]ooſte gracious pleaſure. And further, frely to graunte unto [...]ery on of us his licenſe under wretyng & ſeealle, to chaunge [...] habits into ſecular faſhion, and to receive ſuche maner of [...] as other ſecular prieſts commonly be preferred unto. And we all faithfully ſhall pray unto Almighty God long to preſerve his mooſte noble grace wythe increaſe of moche feli [...] and honour. And in witnes of alle and ſingular the pre [...], we the ſeide warden and covent of the Grey Freers is Coventre to thes preſences have putte our covent ſeealle, the [Page 164] fivithe day of October, in the thertythe yere of the raynge of our mooſte ſoveraynge lord king Henry the eyghte.’

  • Per me Johannem Stafford, Guardian,
  • Per me Thomas Maller,
  • Per me Thomas Sanderſon,
  • Per me Johannem Abell,
  • Per me Johannem Wood,
  • Per me Rogerum Lilly,
  • Per me Thomam Aukock,
  • Per me Matheum Walker,
  • Per me Robartum Walker,
  • Per me Thomam Bangſit,
  • Per me Willielmum Goſnelle.

Which ſ [...]d houſe, or ſite, was in the thirty-fourth of Henry VIII. granted by the king [...] ali [...] ) to the mayor, bailiffs, and commonalry of this city, and their ſucceſſors for ever.

NOT far from the friary is a f [...]ne gate, called The Grey Frier Gate, the moſt beautiful of any left ſtanding.

A [...] farther to the eaſt is Cheleyſmor, where is ſtill to be ſe [...] part of the ma [...]or-houſe: a wooden building, with a gate way beneath. This, or ſome other on the ſite of it, had been the [...]dence of the lords of the place, and of the kings and earls of [...]; after that, of the earls of Cheſter; and finally, it fell to the [...], when that [...]arldom was reſumed: which, with the park, about three miles in circumference, belongs to the Prince of W [...]es as Earl of Cheſter. The caſtle ſtood not remote from the manor-houſe.

[Page 165] FROM hence we proceeded to the Carmelites, or White Friars; whoſe houſe ſtands at the eaſt end of the city: another order devoted to poverty, who lived on charity both from the living and the dead; for they often received legacies, ſuppoſed expiations for ſins. Their houſe was built about the year 1342, by Sir John Poultney, four times lord mayor of London: a gentleman deſervedly celebrated for his pious munificence *. At the diſſolution it was granted to Sir Ralph Sadler. It was afterwards [...]ell to John Hales, who, reſiding here, occaſioned it to be called H [...]les' Place. At preſent, it is occupied by numbers of poor families.

HERE are conſiderable remains of the building: part of the [...]ed cloiſters; the refectory and dormitory, and vaſt vaulted room, which ſerved as magazines for proviſions. A very handſome gateway, with three niches on the front, is ſtill ſtanding; and on an inner gate are three arrows, the arms of one of the be [...]factors.

IN the courſe of my walk a chamber was ſhewn me, in Gosford-ſtreet, noted for the melancholy end of Mary Clues, in February 1772, who was found almoſt conſumed by fire, occaſioned by an accident of a moſt uncommon nature. She had been confined to her bed by illneſs, the conſequence of intemperance. The room was [...]ored with brick; the bed furniſhed with only one curtain, and that was next to the window. The fire-place was on the other ſide. She was left, the evening before the accident, with two [...]mall bits of coal put quite back in the grate, and a ruſh-light on the chair, by the head of the bed. The next morning a great [Page 166] ſmoke was perceived in the room. On burſting open the door [...] flames appeared, which were eaſily extinguiſhed. The remains of the woman lay on the floor, but the furniture of the room was only ſlightly damaged; the bedſtead ſuperficially burnt but neither ſheets, feather-bed, nor blankets deſtroyed.

THE ſolution of this phaenomenon is rather ridiculous. Mrs. [...] was exceſſively addicted to dram-drinking: ſhe would drink a quart in a day, either of rum or aniſe-ſeed water; and by that means, filling her veins with pure ſpirits, became as inflammable as a lamp. She tumbled out of bed, took fire by the candle, and in about two hours was fairly burnt out to her thighs and one leg, and nothing left except her bones, completely calcin [...]d *.

THIS is not the only inſtance I have read of perſons being [...] by their own phlegiſt [...]n, natural or [...]equired. Two Co [...] [...]nd noblemen, after a drinking-match of ſpirituous liquors, died ſcorched and ſuffocated: and the Counteſs Cornelia Bau [...], of [...] in Italy , was found in the ſituation of Mary Clu [...], but without imputation of the guilty origin. Semele was certainly one of thoſe combuſtible ladies; but the gallant Ovid has aſcribed her fatal end to another cauſe.

Corpus mortale tumultu [...]
Non [...]ui [...]t Aethereo [...]; doniſque jugalibus arſit.

Theſe two lordes made proviſion for that was neceſſarye ‘for them for their battayle. The Earl of Derby ** ſent his [...]ſſangers in to Lombardy, to the Duke of Myllayn, Sir Gal [...], for to have armure at his pleaſure. The duke agreed [...] the erles deſyre, and cauſed the knight that the erle had ſent [...], whoſe name was Fraunces, to ſe all the dukes armorye; [...] wh [...]n the knight had choſen ſuch as he lyked, than the duke [...]rthermore, for love of the erle of Derby, he ſent four of the beſt armourers that were in Lombardy to ye erle into Englande [Page 168] with the knight, to [...]henten [...] yt thei ſhuld arme & make armure accordyng to the cries entent. The Erle Marſhal, on his part, [...], and in to other places, to provyde him for the journey. The charge of theſe two lords was greate. But the Erle of Derby was at mooſte charge.’

THE armour of the great men was uncommonly ſplendid and expenſive uſually inlaid with gold and ſilver, with moſt elegant devices and patterns. That of Francis I. in poſſeſſion of Mr. W [...]p [...]e and that of George Earl of Cumberland, at Appleby caſtle, exiſt as ſpecimens of the great attention given to that circumſtance. Beſides beauty, the utmoſt regard was paid to the eſſential requiſite of its being proof. This was to be the reſult of the [...] of the a [...]m [...]ourer not of art-magic; for the combatants [...]ere to clear themſelves by oath, from having any commerce with [...] any or of rendering their armour or bodies invulnerable by any charm. Let their cauſe be ever ſo bad, they determined to die like good Chriſtians; diſavowed all dependence on the power of Satan, and ſupplicated the prayers of the pious [...].

Ad [...] [...]roof unto my armour with thy prayers,
And with thy bleſſings ſteel my lance's point *.

I SHALL give the conſequence of this important affair in the very graphical words of honeſt Holinſhed, who minutely deſcribes the pomp and ceremony preceding the reſolution taken by the unfortunate monarch, which in the end coſt him his crown and life.

[Page 169] ‘At the time appointed, the king came to Coventrie, where the two dukes were readie, according to the order preſcribed therein; comming thither in great arraie, accompanied with the lords and gentlemen of their linages. The king cauſed a ſumptuous ſcaffold, or theater, and roial liſtes there to be erected and prepared. The Sundaie before they ſhould fight, after dinner, the duke of Hereford came to the king (being lodged about a quarter of a mile without the town, in a tower that belonged to Sir William Bagot) to take his leave of him. The morrow after, being the daie appointed for the combat, about the ſpring of the daie came the duke of Norfolke to the court, to take leave likewiſe of the king. The duke of Hereford armed him in his tent, that was ſet up neere to the liſts; and the duke of Norfolke put on his armor betwixt the gate and the barrier of the town, in a beautiful houſe, having a fair perclois of wood towards the gate, that none might ſee what was done within the houſe.’

‘The duke of Aumarle that daie being high conſtable of England, and the duke of Surrie marſhal, placed themſelves betwixt them, well armed and appointed. And when they ſaw their time, they firſt entered into the liſts with a great company of men, apparelled in ſilke ſendal, imbrodered with ſilver both richlie and curiouſlie; everie man having a tipped ſtaff, to keep the field in order. About the houre of prime came to the barriers of the liſts the duke of Hereford, mounted on a white courſer, barded with green and blew velvet, imbroidered ſumptuouſly with ſwans and antelopes of goldſmiths worke, armed at all points. The conſtable and marſhal came to the barriers, demanding of him what he was? he anſwered, [Page 170] 'I am Henrie of Lancaſter, duke of Hereford: which am come hither to do mine indevor againſt Thomas Mowbraie duke of Norfolke, as a traitor untrue to God, the king, his realme, and me.'—Then incontinentlie he ſware upon the holie Evangeliſts, that his quarrel was true & juſt; and upon that point he required to enter the liſts. Then he puts up his ſword, which before he held up naked in his hand, and, putting down his viſor, made a croſs on his horſſe, and with ſpeare in hand entered into the liſts, and deſcended from his horſſe, and ſet him down in a chaire of green velvet, at the one end of the liſts, and there repoſed himſelf, abiding the comming of his adverſarie.’

‘Soone after him entered into the field, with great triumph, King Richard, accompanied with all the peerſes of the realme; and in his companie was the earle of Saint Paule, which was come out of France, in poſt, to ſee this challenge performed. The king had there above ten thouſand men in armour, leaſt ſome fraie or tumult might riſe amongſt his nobles, by quarrelling or partaking. When the king was ſet in his ſeat, which was richly hanged and adorned, a king at arms made open proclamation, prohibiting all men, in the name of the king, and of the high conſtable and marſhal, to enterpriſe or attempt to approach, or touch any part of the liſts, upon pain of death, except ſuch as were appointed to order or marſhal the field. The proclamation ended, another herald cried, 'Behold here Henrie of Lancaſter duke of Hereford, appelant, which is entered into the liſts roiall, to do his devoir againſt Thomas Mowbraie duke of Norfolke, defendant, upon paine to be found falſe & recreant.’

[Page 171] ‘The duke of Norfolke hovered on horſſeback at the entrie of the liſts, his horſſe being barded with crimſon velvet, imbrodered richlie with lions of ſilver and mulberie trees; and when he had made his oth before the conſtable and marſhal, that his quarrel was juſt & true, he entered the field manfullie, ſaieng aloud, 'God, and him that hath the right;' and then he departed from his horſſe, & ſate him downe in his chaire, which was of crimſon velvet, courtined about with white and red damaſke. The lord marſhall viewed their ſpears, to ſee that they were of equall length, and delivered the one ſpeare himſelf to the Duke of Hereford, and ſent the other unto the Duke of Norfolke by a knight; then the herald proclamed, that the traverſes & chaires of the champions ſhould be removed, commanding them, on the king's behalf, to mount on horſſebacke, and addreſs themſelves to the battel and combat *.’

‘The duke of Hereford was quicklie horſſed, and cloſed his bauier, and caſt his ſpeare into the reſt; and when the trumpet founded, ſet forward couragiouſlie towards his enemie ſix or ſeven paſes. The duke of Norfolke was not fullie ſet forward, when the king caſt downe his warder, and the heralds cried 'Ho, ho.' Then the king cauſed their ſpeares to be taken from them, and commanded them to repaire againe to their chaires; where they remained two long houres, while the king and his councell deliberatlie conſulted what order was beſt to be had in ſo weightie a cauſe. Finallie: after they had deviſed, and fullie determined what ſhould be done therein, [Page 172] the heralds cried 'Silence;' and Sir John Buſhie, the king's ſecretarie, read the ſentence and determination of the king and his councell, in a long roll; the effect whereof was, that Henrie duke of Hereford ſhould, within fifteene daies, depart out of the realme, and not to returne before the terme of ten yeares were expired, except by the king he ſhould be repealed againe; and this upon paine of death: and that Thomas Mowbraie duke of Norfolke, bicauſe he had ſowen ſedition in the relme by his words, ſhould likewiſe avoid the realme, and never returne againe into England, nor approch the borders or confines thereof, upon pain of death: and that the king would ſta [...]e the profits of his lands, till he had levied thereof ſuch ſummes of monie as the duke had taken up of the king's treaſuror, for the wages of the garriſon of Calis; which were ſtill unpaid.’

‘When theſe judgements were once read, the king called before him both parties, and made them to ſweare that the one ſhould never come in place where the other was, willinglie, nor keepe any companie togither in any forren region: which oth they both received humblie, and ſo went their waies. The duke of Norfolke departed ſorrowfullie out of the realme into Almanie, and at the laſt came into Venice, where he, for thought and melancholie, deceaſſed; for he was in hope (as writers record) that he ſhould have beene borne out in the matter by the king; which, when it fell out otherwiſe, it greeved him not a little. The duke of Hereford tooke his leave of the king at Eltham, who there releaſed foure yeares of his baniſhment; ſo he tooke his jornie over into Calis, and from thence went into France, where he remained.’

[Page 173] ‘A woonder it was to ſee what number of people ran after him, in everie towne and ſtreet where he came, before he tooke the ſea, lamenting and bewailing his departure; as who ſhould ſaie, that when he departed, the onlie ſhield, defenſe, and comfort of the commonwealth was vaded and gone.’

ABOUT two miles from Coventry, I croſſed the little river Sow at Binly bridge, a little beyond which ſtands the beautiful ſmall church of the name, dedicated to St. Bartholomew, [Note: BINLY CHURCH.] formerly belonging to the monks of Coventry; now a curacy in the gift of Lord Craven, who rebuilt the church with uncommon elegance. The roof is coved, and ornamented with ſcriptural hiſtories, in form of medallions, and with pious ornaments of croſſes, crowns, and thorns, and other decorations adapted to the place. The altar is in a tribune, with marble pillars; and its window conſiſts of glaſs painted with a fine holy family, by Mr. William Pecket.

Combe Abbey, or, to ſpell it with propriety, Cwm, from its low ſituation, [Note: COMBE ABBEY.] lies about two miles farther. Notwithſtanding its converſion to the ſeat of a nobleman, it retains in part the form of its conventual ſtate. The cloiſters are preſerved on three ſides of the antient court, glazed as when occupied by the antient owners, and their walls enriched with the ſpoils of the chace. Methinks the jovial abbot is now before me, formed out of the monk ſo admirably deſcribed by old Chaucer.

A monk ther was, a fayre for the maiſtrie,
An out rider that loved venerie;
A manly man, to ben an abbot able;
Full many a deinte hors hadde he in ſtable.
[Page 174] And when he rode, men mighte his bridel here,
Gingeling in a whiſtling wind as clere
And eke as loude as doth the chapell belle.
Ther as this lord was keper of the celle,
The rule of Seint Maure and of Seint Beneit,
Becauſe that it was olde & ſomedele ſtreit,
This ilke monk lette olde thinges pace,
And held after the newe world the trace.
He yave not of the text a pulled hen,
That ſaith that hunters ben not holy men;
Ne that a monk, when he is rekkeles,
Is like a fiſh that is waterles:
This is to ſay, a monk out of his cloiſtre,
This ilke text held he not worth an oiſtre.
And I ſay his opinion was good:
What ſhulde he ſtudie, & make himſelven wood,
Upon a book in cloiſtre alway to pore,
Or ſwinken with his hondes, & laboure
As Auſtin bit? How ſhall the world be ſerved?
Let Auſtin have his ſwink to him reſerved.
Therefore he was a prickaſoure a right;
Greihounds he hadde as ſwift as ſoul of flight:
Of pricking, & of hunting for the hare,
Was all his luſt; for no coſt wolde he ſpare.

THE abbot is now repreſented by a jovial Engliſh baron, not leſs a lover of the generous exerciſe. He derives his right to the place from his anceſtor Sir William Craven, Knight, great grandſon of Henry Craven, elder brother to Sir William, lord mayor of London in 1610; one of the richeſt men of his time. It was purchaſed from that ſquanderer Lucy counteſs of Bedford, who inherited it from her brother Lord Harrington, who derived it from his mother Anne, daughter of Robert Kelway, who received [Page 175] it in leaſe after the forfeiture of John Dudley duke of Northumberland, to whom it had been granted by Edward VI. It had been founded by Richard de Camville, in 1150, and peopled with Ciſtercian monks; [Note: FOUNDER.] who were at the diſſolution found to be endowed with upwards of three hundred pounds a year *. Robert Bates, alias Kymmer, was the laſt abbot; who, for his ſurrender, was rewarded with a penſion of eighty pounds a year , and his thirteen or fourteen religious with ſmall pittances, as the merit of the deed reſted in the former.

THAT accompliſhed nobleman Lord Harrington was the refounder of this houſe; which Cambden ſays aroſe from the aſhes of the antient abbey. His taſte is evident, in his preſervation of the venerable cloiſters. It is indebted to the owners of the preſent name for its inſtructive furniture of portraits; probably entirely to the hero William Craven, a moſt diſtinguiſhed perſonage of this family.

IN the north parlour is a fine full-length of his great maſter in the art of war, [Note: PORTRAITS.] Guſtavus Adolphus; under whoſe banners he defended the Proteſtant cauſe in Germany, and, when very young, gained immortal honor at the deſperate ſtorming of the fortreſs of Creutenach, in the palatinate.

A FULL-LENGTH of James Stewart duke of Richmond, in black, with long flowing flaxen hair, and a dog by him. This illuſtrious nobleman forms one of the moſt amiable characters in the reign of Charles I. His attachment and affection to his royal relation was unequalled: he is even ſaid to have offered his own life, to ſave that of his devoted maſter . He was permitted to [Page 176] attend the funeral of the beloved remains; then lingered away a few years, and died a victim to grief on March 30, 1655.

Frederick V. elector palatine, a full-length, in robes, and with the unfortunate crown which he wore, as ſhort-lived king of Bohemia, elected by the revolted ſtate in 1619, when it attempted to ſhake off the yoke of the emperor Ferdinand II. The battle of Prague, in the following year, deprived Frederick of his new kingdom and his hereditary dominions, and, from a potent prince, reduced him hereby to that of a fugitive beggar in Holland. He ſurvived his own misfortunes twelve years, but died with grief, on the death of his great friend Guſtavus Adolphus, in 1632.

NEAR him is his queen, dreſſed in black, and with a melancholy look. She was the daughter of our peaceful monarch James I; who, either through hatred of war, or diſapprobation of his ſon-in-law's ambition, reluctantly undertook his defence, and made, under Mansfield, an unfortunate eſſay. His daughter Elizabeth ſupported her unhappy ſituation with uncommon dignity, and ſhewed, amidſt the moſt diſtreſsful poverty, an illuſtrious example of magnanimity. She viſited the army of Guſtavus, which had in view her huſband's reſtoration, as well as the giving liberty to the German Proteſtants. The Engliſh volunteers ſeem to have fought her battles, inſpired by love. She was the admiration of the camp, and had votaries among every nation. The young Craven was among her warmeſt devotees, and continued his attachment to the laſt moment of her life; poſſeſſed her deſerved confidence, directed all her affairs, and gave a moſt diſtinguiſhing proof of his eſteem, by building for her uſe, at his eſtate in Berkſhire, a magnificent palace. The difference of rank alone [Page 177] prevented the publication of their union, which is generally ſuppoſed to have taken place. Her ſpotleſs fame was never aſperſed with improper connection.

I MUST ſtep to another room, the picture-gallery, for the portrait of her admirer; a fine head, with the body armed, and croſſed with a ſaſh. Let me finiſh his hiſtory with ſaying, that after the death of Guſtavus, he retired from the Swediſh army into the ſervice of the Dutch, and, notwithſtanding he never interfered in the civil wars of his own country, yet, in 1650, his eſtates were confiſcated by the parlement (as is ſaid) through falſe accuſations of favors done the exiled king. On the reſtoration he came over, and in 1670, on the death of the Duke of Albemarle, he was appointed colonel of the Coldſtream regiment of guards. His gallant ſpirit never forſook him: he braved the peſtilence in its greateſt fury, and, with a few other worthies, undertook the care of London in 1665, during the deſolation of the plague; and in every fire, was ſo active in preventing the devaſtation of that other ſcourge, that it was ſaid, ‘his very horſe ſmelt it out.’

I MUST return to the parlour, to mention a fine converſation-piece, conſiſting of prince Rupert, prince Maurice, and the duke of Richmond at table, in the manner of Dobſon, by Honthurſt. Thoſe of the king of Bohemia and his queen are by the ſame hand; Honthurſt having had the honor of inſtructing that unfortunate princeſs and her family.

A HEAD of Raphael.

THE brazen ſerpent, ſurrounded by the terrified multitude: a fine performance.

Judith and Holofernes. Her maid, a ſwarthy old woman, is performing the operation of cutting off the head.

[Page 178] ON the ſtair-caſe is a large picture of Lord Craven on horſe-back, with a truncheon in his hand.

IN the breakfaſt-room is a fine ſcene among the Alps, by John Loren, a Dutchman, who, reſiding much in Switzerland, became celebrated for his wild romantic views.

IN the picture-gallery is a fine half-length of David, with the head of Goliah, by Guercino. Frederick Tromellus, count Lavella, a head.

John Erneſt duke of Savoy.

Guſtavus Adolphus, a half-length, and the heads of ſixteen of his illuſtrious generals, by Mirevelt. Theſe, and moſt of the other portraits of men of eminence in Germany, were brought over by the queen of Bohemia, and by her bequeathed by will to Lord Craven.

A HEAD of Mirevelt, and another of Honthurſt, painted by themſelves. The former reſided chiefly at Delft, and was prevented from viſiting England by reaſon of the plague. The latter was here ſome time, by the encouragement of Charles I.

Chriſtian duke of Brunſwick, a fierce hero in the army of Guſtavus, ſubdued by the charms of our royal countrywoman. It is ſaid, that he ſnatched a glove from her, put it in his cap, and ſwore he would never part with it, till he ſaw her huſband in poſſeſſion of the capital of Bohemia *.

SIR Edward Cecil, third ſon of the earl of Exeter, a celebrated commander during thirty-five years in the Netherlands. He died in 1638, after being honored with the title of Lord Wimbledon. His picture is a head, with ſhort grey hair; his body in rich [Page 179] [...]rmour, with a ſaſh. From this the print by Simon Paſs was [...].

A REMARKABLE legend of Otto, or Otho I. earl of Oldenberg, repreſented as wearied with the chace, and ſeparated from his compaſſions, on a wild mountain. When he was almoſt fainting with [...], a beautiful virgin, in white, with long flowing hair, and a [...]land on her head, burſts out of the ſide of the hill, and offers him drink out of a rich horn, which ſhe put into his hand, aſſur [...] him, that if he drank, proſperity would attend him and his houſe. He diſliked the propoſal, ſuſpecting deceit. Accordingly, pouring ſome of the liquor on the hind part of his horſe, found it ſo noxious as to take off the hair. He inſtantly rode off [...] the horn full ſpeed, terrified at the adventure; and the ſp [...]re retired into the bowels of the mountain. The horn, which gave riſe to this fable, is of ſilver, gilt, and of moſt exquiſite workmanſhip; and is ſtill preſerved in the muſeum at [...]. * Inſtead of being of the age of Otho I. or about the year [...], it is proved to have been made by Chriſtian I. in honor of the three kings of Cologne, whoſe names are inſcribed on it; [...]or it ſeems it was cuſtomary, among the northern nations, to de [...] their cups or horns to ſaints, and make large libations out of them, invoking the ſaint to aſſiſt the mighty draught: Help Gol [...] Maria dat [...]w Got . What gave riſe to the particular le [...] relative to the horn, is the figure of a woman on the recur [...]ed up, with a label, with this jovial exhortation, Drine all w [...]; [...] the lip, O mater Dei memento mei.

[Page 180] In ſeveral apartments whoſe names I have forgotten, are var [...]ty of other paintings and portraits.

AMONG them is one of the founder of the family, Sir William Craven, lord ma [...]or of London, by Janſen; two full-lengths of Earl Craven, in armour, one very ſpirited; and a portrait of Sir William Craven of this place, by Sir Peter Lely; Lucy counteſs of B [...]ford, by Janſen, in the ſame attitude and dreſs in which ſhe is painted at Weburn and at A [...] *.

AN elegant figure of Henry prince of Wa [...]s, in a gay ſilk jacket, crimſon hoſe, roſes to his ſhoes, a white ſilk hat and feather before h [...], and a glove in one hand. He ſtands in a room with a pretty view through the window. Drawn while that amiable prince was in his boyhood.

Charles II. when young, his body armed with ſteel, the reſt with buff.

GENERAL Monk, cloathed entirely in buff. This ſpecies of defence was uſually made of the ſl [...]n of the elk, and oftentimes of the ſtag, and was proof enough to turn a ball.

DUKE of Ormond, by Sir Peter Lely.

A PRETTY half-length of Lord Herbert, young, in armour, laced crav [...]t, and his helmet before him.

THE puniſhment of ſloth: a man whipping a woman out of bed.

A F [...]NE decollation of St. John, by Albert Dur [...]r. The executioner ſheathing his ſword▪ Herodias's daughter receives the head with great ſatisfaction of countenance, and her ſwelling waiſt ſhews the price of the Evangeliſt's deſtruction.

[Page 181] FOUR muſicians: two, a Flemiſh gentleman and a lady; the other, peaſants: a capital performance, by Frank Hals.

THE offering of the wiſe men in the eaſt, by Paul Veroneſe, equally fine.

AN old woman and boy, heads, by candle-light, likewiſe fine.

TWO fine paintings, by Rembrandt, of two philoſophers; each with a noble pupil: one in a Turkiſh dreſs; the other in an ermine robe. Theſe young figures are called Prince Rupert and Prince Maurice. The time of the reſidence of their mother in Holland, agrees entirely with that of Rembrandt in Amſterdam, which makes the conjecture probable.

I RETURNED through Coventry, and, paſſing over the ſite of the New gate, ſoon entered on a long common. At about a mile's diſtance from the city, on the left ſide of the road, ſtood the Chartreux, now inhabited by — Inge, Eſquire. Little of the antient building remains. The wall of the precinct is ſtill ſtanding and in a wall in the garden are the marks of many ſmall doors, the entrance into the cells of the auſtere inhabitants.

THIS religious houſe aroſe from the pious intentions of William Lord Zouch of Harringworth, in Northamptonſhire, who obtaining, in 1381, fourteen acres of land in this place from Sir Baldwyn Frevile the elder, determined on that to erect a monaſtery of Carthuſians, and endow it with ample revenues. Death prevented the execution; but in his laſt illneſs he left ſixty pounds towards a future eſtabliſhment.

THE deſign was ſpeedily completed by various pious perſons. Richard Luff, a mayor of Coventry, and Richard Botoner, a fellow-citizen, beſtowed four hundred marks on the church-choir, cloiſters, [Page 182] and three cells: others followed their example. Richard II. on his return from Scotland, in 1385, aſſumed the honor of being the founder, and, at the inſtance of his queen Anne, laid the firſt ſtone of the church with his own hands, declaring, in the preſence of his nobility, and of the mayor and citizens of Coventry, that he would bring it to perfection. After this, it received conſiderable endowments, and at the diſſolution was found, according to Dugdale, to be poſſeſſed of £131. 6s. 8d. above all reprizes. The prior ſeemed to want the reſolution of this ſevere and conſcientious order; for more of this than any other reſiſted the will of their cruel monarch, and underwent martyrdom in ſupport of the truſts committed to them. It is probable that John Bochard, the laſt who preſided over the houſe, was prevaled on to ſurrender for the conſideration of the great penſion of forty pounds a year: after which it was granted to Richard Andrews and Leonard Chamberlain.

A LITTLE farther I croſſed the Sherbourn, leaving on the right Whitley, [Note: WHITLEY.] a large old houſe, in which Charles I. reſided during the attempt upon Coventry. I was told, that the hiſtory of many of his actions had been painted on the wainſcot. About a mile and a half from hence I paſſed the Avon, at Finford bridge. This is the river that runs by Warwick and Stratford, and diſcharges itſelf into the Severn, near Tewkeſbury; ſtill retaining the Britiſh name Afon, or river, as is the caſe with ſeveral others watering Engliſh ground.

ASCEND an extenſive brow, commanding a rich and vaſt view toward the north and weſt. On the ſummit is a tumulus, from which the ſpot, which gives name to the hundred, is called Knightlow, [Note: KNIGHTLOW.] or mount. It ſeems to have been ſepulchral, and to [Page 183] have covered the aſhes of ſome Roman eques, or knight, from which it was denominated. It lies very near a great Roman road, as cuſtomary with ſimilar memorials. On it in after-times ſtood a croſs; on whoſe baſe the inhabitants of ſeveral towns in this hundred ſtill attend, and pay the dues to the lord on Martinmaſs-day: the ſums are from 1d. to 2s. 3d. each. Theſe rents are called Wroth-money, and Warth or Swarff penny, and are ſuppoſed by Dugdale to be the ſame as ward-penny: Vicecomiti aut aliis caſtellanis perſoluti ob caſtrorum praeſidium vel excubias agendas. They muſt be paid at this croſs before ſun-riſe, and the party paying muſt go thrice round the croſs, ſay wroth-money, and put it into the hole in the ſtone before good witneſs, or on omiſſion to forfeit thirty ſhillings and a white bull *.

A SMALL ſpace beyond, the Roman foſs-way croſſes the road: [Note: ROMAN ROAD.] it enters this county at High Croſs, on the verge of Leiceſterſhire, where it is interſected by the great Watling-ſtreet, and traverſes direct to Stafford upon Foſs, near the edge of Gloceſterſhire.

Go over Dunſmore heath (now incloſed) and, after riding in a tedious avenue of elms and firs for five miles, reach Dunchurch, or the church on the hill; a ſmall village, whoſe church once belonged to the monks of Pipwell, in Northamptonſhire.

DESCEND the hill, and about three miles further go near Willoughby, or the place of willows; a little village, [Note: WILLOUGHBY.] with a church dedicated to St. Nicholas, formerly appropriated to the hoſpital of St. John, without Eaſt-gate, Oxford; now in the patronage of Magdalen College. This bottom, at preſent enlivened with the windings of the canal, aſſumes a commercial appearance, by the number of new buildings riſing on its banks, and the magazines [Page 184] of coal and limeſtone laid up for ſale. The former gives a moſt comfortable proſpect to the half-ſtarved inhabitants of Northamptonſhire, by flattering them with the ſpeedy approximation of the means of warmth, and giving to their poor good fuel, inſtead of the wretched ſubſtitute of horſe-dung, which they collect in ſcanty portions for that purpoſe.

IT would be ungrateful to leave Warwickſhire, without paying a tribute to the memory of Mr. Henry Beighton, author of the map of this county, ſurveyed by him in 1722, 23, 24, and 25. As it was the earlieſt, ſo it was the beſt performance of the kind. He had an eſtate of about a hundred a year, in the pariſh of Coton, in this county. He aſſiſted his income by ſurveying, in which, for elegance, accuracy, and expedition, he had few equals. He left behind him, in his neighborhood, numbers of excellent ſurveyors, who own him for their maſter. His account of London bridge, in the Philoſophical Tranſactions, ſhews his ſkill in mechanics. He was interred at Chilvers Coton; where a ſmall monument barely tells that he lived and died, without mentioning his merit, neglected by his countrymen during life; for he never met with encouragement to publiſh his admirable map: which was done about the year 1750 *. by ſubſcription, for the ſupport of his widow.

FROM Willoughby I inſtantly entered NORTHAMPTONSHIRE, [Note: BRAUNSTON.] in the pariſh of Braunſton. The village, church with ſpire ſteeple, and the number of narrow incloſures, appear on the ſide [Page 185] of a ſlope, on the left of the road. This is among the few places I neglected to viſit. I muſt therefore ſpeak from Mr. Bridges * of its croſs, twenty-four feet high; of the effigy of the Knight Templar in the church; and of the inſtance of the longevity of William Bren, of this village, who attained the age of an hundred and twenty-one.

AFTER the Conqueſt, the D' Aiencourts and the Peverels held land here. From the laſt it fell, by marriage, to Albricius de Harcourt; by his daughter, to William de Truſſebot, a man raiſed from a low ſituation, by his deſperate valour, to great eſtates. In the reign of king Stephen, being attacked in Bonville, of which he was governor, he ſet fire to his own houſe in four places; which ſo terrified the enemy, that they inſtantly evacuated the town.

BY his daughter Roeſe, it fell to Everard de Roos; a family who flouriſhed here for ſeveral centuries, a diſtinguiſhed race. One of them, William, was clamant to the crown of Scotland, under the arbitration of Edward I . They became extinct in the male line, in the reign of Henry VII. when Elinor, eldeſt ſiſter of the laſt Lord Roos, conveyed it by marriage to Sir Robert Manners; and it was ſold by his deſcendant, Henry earl of Rutland (who died in 1563) to Gregory Iſham, of London, merchant, a younger ſon of the reſpectable and antient family of that name.

THE preſent lord of the manor is — Web, Eſquire; who keeps in the ſmall manor-houſe a court-leet and baron. [Note: SINGULAR TENURE.] The tenure of a conſiderable portion of land in the pariſh is very ſingular. If a widow appears at the next court after her huſband's death, and preſents a leathern purſe with a groat in it, ſhe [Page 186] can keep her huſband's copyhold lands for life; but ſhe muſt attend every court after ſhe has done this ſervice.

FROM Dunchurch the country grows hilly, and till of late unincloſed; pleaſant during the verdure of the young, and the rich yellow of the ripened corn. About three miles from Braunſton appears Daventry, [Note: DAVENTRY.] on the ſide and top of a hill. The place is populous, and carries on a conſiderable manufacture of whips: is an incorporated town, governed by a bailiff, twelve burgeſſes, and a recorder; has two ſerjeants at mace, and one town-clerk. The bailiff for the time is juſtice of the peace, and alſo the year following; and is likewiſe coroner of the inqueſt. The ſerjeants may arreſt any within their juriſdiction for a ſum under one hundred pounds, and the cauſe is to be decided here. No county juſtice hath power in this place; the juſtices of the borough having power of commitment to the county-jail in criminal cauſes. The inhabitants alſo enjoy the privilege of exemption from ſerving on juries at the county aſſizes.

ITS charter is ſaid to have been firſt granted by king John, and was renewed by queen Elizabeth. The place is of conſiderable antiquity; eſpecially if we give into the derivation of its name, Dwy Avon tre, the town of the two Avons, or rivers, from its ſituation between them. Certainly it was a place of note at the Conqueſt; had in it ſixteen plough-lands; in the manor three, with three ſlaves, twenty villeyns, a preſbyter, and ten boors, and twelve acres of meadow. It had been worth three pounds: after that event improved to eight.

THIS was part of the great poſſeſſions of the counteſs Judith, niece to the Conqueror, whom he had married to the brave Waltheof earl of Northumberland; and farther to engage his fidelity, [Page 187] he gave with her this county, and that of Huntingdon. Waltheof unfortunately engaged in a conſpiracy; and, notwithſtanding he repented, and flung himſelf at the king's mercy, was beheaded in 1074, at the inſtigation of his wife *. It ſeems ſhe had caſt a favorable eye on another perſon: but was diſappointed; for the king offered to her Simon de Liz, a noble Norman, lame of one leg: him ſhe rejected; which ſo enraged her uncle, that he deprived her of the two earldoms, and gave them to De Liz, with her eldeſt daughter; which obliged Judith to a ſtate of penitential widowhood during life.

HERE are ſome remains of the priory, [Note: PRIORY.] inhabited by poor families. The place is eaſily diſcovered, by ſeveral gothic windows, and a door acceſſible by a great flight of ſteps. Four Cluniac monks were originally placed at Preſton Capes, in this county, by Hugh de Leyceſter, ſheriff of the county, and ſteward to Maud, ſiſter to the firſt S. Liz earl of Huntingdon; but finding the ſituation inconvenient, for want of water, he built a priory here; to which place he removed them, about the year 1090. It was dedicated to St. Auguſtine, and was ſubordinate to St. Mary de Caritate . Its ſpiritualities were valued at £115. 17s. 4d. per annum; its temporalities £120. 10s. 2d. Cardinal Wolſey made five of his emiſſaries to pick a quarrel with the poor monks, about certain lands of theirs; and, cauſing the diſpute to be referred to himſelf, took occaſion to diſſolve the houſe, and, as Stow ſays, to be given to his own college. ‘But of this irreligious robbery, done of no conſcience, but to patch up pride, which private wealth could not furniſh, what puniſhment [Page 188] hath ſince enſued by God's hand (ſayeth mine author) partly ourſelves have ſeen; for of thoſe five perſons, two fell at diſcord between themſelves, and the one ſlew the other; for which the ſurvivor was hanged: the third drowned himſelf in a well: the fourth, being well known, and valued worth two hundred pounds, became in three years ſo poore, that he begged till his dying-day: and the fift, called Doctor Allane, being cheefe executor of theſe doings, was cruelly maimed in Ireland, even at ſuch time as he was biſhop * ’.—The pious hiſtorian then traces the judgment to the cardinal, who died under the king's diſpleaſure: to the colleges which occaſioned the ſacrilege; that of Ipſwich being pulled down; that of Chriſt-church never finiſhed under Wolſey's patronage: and laſtly to the pope, who permitted theſe violences on religious houſes; for he was beſieged in his holy ſee, and ſuffered a long impriſonment.

THE pariſh-church had been the conventual: [Note: CHURCH.] of late years it was handſomely rebuilt; but is no more than a curacy in the gift of Chriſt-church college. The arms of the college, and of the earl of Winchelſea, lord of the manor, grace the eaſt window.

FROM Daventry I viſited the noted camps on Borough-hill, [Note: BOROUGH-HILL.] or Danes-hill, about a mile ſouth-eaſt of the town. It is lofty and inſulated. The area is of an oblong or oval form, about a meaſured mile in length, and near two in circumference. The whole is ſurrounded by two, three, or four deep trenches, and the ſame number of great ramparts, or banks; according as the ſtrength or weakneſs of the ground required. Theſe [Page 189] run on the margin of the hill, and on the ſlope; and having the entrance on the eaſtern and weſtern ſides oppoſite to each other.

WITHIN the area, near the middle, is a bank, which paſſes ſtrait from the weſtern ſide towards the eaſtern: the remainder is deſtroyed. Farther on is the veſtige of another, running parallel. Theſe, when entire, would have formed a rectangular camp, by the aſſiſtance of part of the ditches on the ſides of the hill.

NEAR this camp are ſeveral tumuli of the ſepulchral kind; but ſince Mr. Morton's time, their number is evidently leſſened; for in his days, he informs us, there were eighteen.

THE northern end of the hill is formed into a third camp, of a circular ſhape, and of vaſt ſtrength. Two ditches, of prodigious depth, with ſuitable ramparts, and a deep entrance, croſs the area, and fall into the general ſurrounding ditches, which have been deepened to add to the ſtrength of the third part. There is likewiſe the imperfect remains of another ditch and bank on the outſide, a little ſouth, deſigned to add to the ſecurity.

ON the north-weſt part of the great rampart of this round camp, is a great mount, either exploratory, or the ſpot where the chieftain pitched his tent.

I MUST differ with Mr. Morton about the makers of the firſt of theſe camps or poſts, which were the Britons themſelves. It has every agreement with the multitudes of others ſcattered over the kingdom, and ſuits exactly with the deſcription left by Tacitus of the method of defence uſed by our anceſtors, Tunc montibus arduis, et ſi qua clementer accedi poterunt in modum valli ſaxa praeſtruit. I [Page 190] ſhall not here repeat what I have fully dwelt on in my Tours in Wales and Scotland *.

THIS poſt was in all probability made uſe of when the victorious Oſtorius was traverſing this iſland, to quell the commotions he found on his arrival in Britain. It is evident, that the Britons at this period made uſe of the ſame ſpecies of defence which is proved to have been common to the whole country. The Iceni lodged themſelves within a poſt of this kind, againſt this very general (Locum pugnae delegere ſeptum agreſti aggere et aditu anguſto ne pervius equis foret) but it did not avale. The Coritani of theſe parts had recourſe to the ſtrong hold of what I dare ſay they called Ben Avon, or the head over the river; one of the ſtreams which form the Nen, the river of this country, paſſing beneath.

THIS poſt proved no obſtacle to the Conqueror; he found it ſit for a ſtation: he contracted its limits eaſt into the ſhape of the camps of his people, and made this a ſummer ſtation, as he did the warm bottom, near the fort, a winter ſtation. Numbers of Roman coins found on the ſpots, evince the conjecture. The Romans, as is frequently the caſe, latinized the Britiſh name, and formed from it their Benvenna; which I beg leave to place here, rather than at Wedon, a place deſtitute of all claſſical traces.

I MUST add, that on the ſouth-eaſt ſide of Borough-hill, about two or three hundred yards below the ditches, is a leſſer camp, ſurrounded by a foſs and bank. Mr. Morton gueſſes it to have [Page 191] been the receptacle of the carriages of the greater camp: I imagine it to have been a proceſtria, a ſort of free poſt attendant often on camps, where proviſions and other neceſſaries were brought.

As to the third diviſion of the area of this hill, it is probably Saxon; the words borough, burgh, berry, and bury, being the conſtant appellation left by the Saxons to ſimilar places. It is my belief, that every poſt of this nature, occupied by that nation in our iſland, had been originally Britiſh; which they altered to their conceptions of ſtrength and defence; which was uſually done by deepening the ditches, raiſing the ramparts, and clearing the area, and often exalting one part into what was called the dunjeon, or keep. Theſe places were ſtationary, not properly camps; for the antient Germans, from whom theſe invaders were derived, and whoſe cuſtoms they retained, made uſe of no other defence to their camps than a barrier of waggons, with which they formed the precinct. Omnes Barbari, ſays Vegetius, carris ſuis in orbem connexis ad ſimilitudinem caſtrorum ſecuras a ſupervenientibus exigunt noctes *. Caeſar twice mentions this cuſtom among the German nations; and I am told, that even in later days, this mode of defence has been uſed, and called Waggenburg, or the camp of waggons.

EVERY thing on this hill muſt not be attributed to remote antiquity; for Charles I. a few days before the fatal battle of Naſeby, occupied this poſt, and fortified it: ſo poſſibly ſome of the entrenchments might be the work of the unfortunate monarch .

[Page 192] I MUST not quit this place without mentioning a ſpot which I overlooked. [Note: BURNT WALLS.] This is what Mr. Morton calls the Burnt Walls; where many loads of walls and foundations have been dug up. The precinct is about ſix acres, and was moated round. The water that filled the moat was conveyed from pools in Daventry Park, a place not remote. Tradition ſays, that within the area ſtood a ſeat of John of Gaunt; which is probable, as this manor was once poſſeſſed by the earls and dukes of Lancaſter, in Edward III's time, annexed to that dutchy, and aſſigned to that great duke *.

CONTINUE my journey: turn a little out of my road, on the left, [Note: DODFORD CHURCH.] to Dodford church; and found there a tomb of a croſs-legged knight, armed in mail, with both hands upon his ſword, as if in the attitude of drawing it. On his ſhield are, ill-blazoned, vaire, argent and azure; two bars gules, which denote the perſon here depoſited to have been a Keynes, one of the antient lords of the place; and, from the attitude of his legs, to have lived during the faſhionable madneſs of cruſades.

Two ladies, in hoods, recumbent, ſaid to have been two ſiſters, co-heireſſes of the manor, and probably Margaret and Maud de Ayote, who were poſſeſſed of this manor, I think, in the time of Richard II; which deſcended to their father, Laurence, from his mother, Lettice, ſiſter to William de Keynes.

A BRASS plate of William Wyde, who died owner of this place in 1422, and another of his wife.

AN alabaſter figure, armed, of John Creſſy, a ſucceſſor of the former; who diſtinguiſhed himſelf in the French wars, under the [Page 193] duke of Bedford, was captain of Lycieux, Orbef, and Ponteſque, in Normandy, and privy-counſellor in France. He died in 1443, at Tove, in Lorrain *.

IN this manor, the Watling-ſtreet croſſes the road to Wedon: it enters the county at Dowbridge, on the edge of Leiceſterſhire, paſſes cloſe by Borough-hill, and proceeds from Wedon to Touceſter and Stoney Stratford, where it enters the county of Bucks.

NEAR the ſixty-eighth mile-ſtone is the entrance to the new turnpike-road to Northampton, which is above ſeven miles diſtant; and on an eminence, a little to the left, is pleaſantly ſeated the church and village of Flore, or Flower.

A LITTLE beyond, on the right, lies the village of Wedon on the Street, [Note: WEDON.] or Weedon Bec; from which I chuſe to transfer the old Bennevenna to Borough-hill, on account of deficiency of claſſical evidence at this place, and the little difference of diſtance from the other ſtations.

SUFFICIENT honor will remain to Wedon, in allowing it to have been the ſite of the royal palace of Wulfere , the Mercian monarch; afterwards converted into a nunnery, at the inſtance of his daughter, St. Werburg; who preſided for a time over it. Here ſhe performed the miracle of the wild geeſe; who, at her word, forgot their nature, were driven by her ſteward from their ravages among the corn, into the grange, and, after receiving from her a ſevere check for their depredations, were commanded to take wing, and never appear in her demeſns. They obeyed in part, but kept hovering about, till one of their companions, which had [Page 194] been ſtolen (and ſome ſay eaten) by a ſervant, was reſtored; on which they bid an eternal adieu to the fields of Wedon *.

THIS nunnery was deſtroyed by the Danes; but the memory of the foundreſs was preſerved in Leland's day, by a fair chapel dedicated to that ſaint .

AFTER the Conqueſt, Roger de Thebovil gave a moiety of lands in this monaſtery to the abbey of Bec, in Normandy; which was, with many other grants to the ſame houſe, confirmed by Henry II. That abbey afterwards became poſſeſſed of the whole, when it was made dependent on their great cell or priory at Okeburn, in Wiltſhire. Vaſt privileges were beſtowed in favor of the monks of this abbey; ſuch as exemption from ſuit and ſervice to the county and hundred courts; from toll paſſage and pontage; and exemption from foreſt laws. They had alſo free warren, and right of determining in murder, manſlaughter, &c. &c. all which periſhed at the diſſolution of the priories; and this manor, as part of the poſſeſſions of Okeburn, was veſted in the provoſt and fellows of Eton college, by Henry VI; in which it ſtill continues .

FROM hence, I was led by my curioſity about two miles weſtward, [Note: CASTLE DIKES.] to Caſtle Dikes, in the pariſh of Farthingſtone, remarkable for ſome antient works attributed to the Saxons. They are placed on the brow of a ſteep hill, commanding a vaſt view; but at preſent ſo overgrown with thick woods, that I had but a very indiſtinct ſight of them. They appeared to comprehend near thirteen [Page 195] acres of ground, and to conſiſt of ſtrong holds, divided from each other by a ditch of ſtupendous breadth and depth. A plat, called the Caſtle-yard, ſtands to the ſouth-weſt of theſe, entrenched on all ſides but the ſouth-weſt, comprehending about ſeven acres, on which, tradition ſays, a town was ſituated.

MR. Morton informs us, that a vaulted room, formed of ſquared ſtones, was diſcovered in his time, and beneath that another, which falling in accidentally, a ſmell, reſembling that of putrid carcaſes, iſſued from it. Two or three, rude ſculptures were alſo diſcovered among the rubbiſh.

IT is conjectured that this place was burnt by the Danes; for vaſt maſſes of cinders, mixed with pebbles and clay, have been found in different parts; and many of the ſtones had on them the marks of fire *. There is no account left of the particulars of their ravages; ſo this reſts upon conjecture, as well as the notion of Ethelfleda having been founder of this place, among her other great works performed in 913.

ON my return to the great road, about two miles from the place, I viſited the church of Stow-nine-Churches, [Note: STOW-NINE-CHURCHES.] to ſee the moſt elegant tomb which this or any other kingdom can boaſt of; that of Elizabeth, fourth daughter of John lord Latimer, wife, firſt to Sir John Danvers, of Dantrey, Wiltſhire, and afterwards to Sir Edmund Cary, third ſon of Henry lord Hunſdon. Her figure is of white marble, lying recumbent on a ſlab of black. The attitude is the moſt eaſy poſſible, that of one aſleep; her head, covered with a looſe hood, reclines on a rich cuſhion. One hand is placed on her breaſt, the other lies on one ſide. Round her neck is a [Page 196] quilled ruff. The faſhionable ſtiffneſs of her embroidered ſtays is a diſadvantage to this elegant ſculpture. Her gown flows to her feet in eaſy folds, and covers them. She lies on a long cloak, lined with ermine, faſtened at her neck with rich jewels. At her feet is a griffin holding a ſhield of the family-arms. The whole reſts on a white marble altar-tomb, with inſcriptions and arms on the ſides. After informing us of her parentage, marriages, and children, are theſe lines:

Sic familia praeclara

Praeclarior prole

Virtute praeclariſſima

Aetatis 84,

Anno

Dni. 1630.

Commutavit Saecula; non obiit.

She left three ſons and ſeven daughters by her firſt huſband. Sir Charles, the eldeſt, loſt his head through his unfortunate attachment to the ill-fated Earl of Eſſex; Henry, an able warrior, died Earl of Danby, full of years and glory; Sir John married into the great family of the Newports, in Shropſhire.

THIS noble monument was erected by the lady in her lifetime, and was the chef d'oeuvre of that great ſtatuary Nicholas Stone, maſter-maſon to king James and Charles I. ſtatuary and ſtone cutter; ſo humbly does he ſtile himſelf. It appears by a note of his, that, ‘ March the 16. 1617. I undertook to make a tomb for my lady, mother to Lord Davers; which was all of whit marbell & touch *; and I ſet it up at Stow of the nine [Page 197] Churches, in Northamptonſhire, ſom 2 yeare after. One altar tombe: for the which I had 220 li. *

OPPOSITE to this is a very handſome cenotaph, in memory of the Reverend Doctor Thomas Turner, born at Briſtol in 1645, and buried in 1714, in Corpus Chriſti college, Oxford, of which he had been preſident.

HE laid out his great income in acts of hoſpitality and charity; and on his death, after bequeathing £4000 to his relations and friends, left the reſt of his wealth to pious uſes. He augmented the ſtipends of the poorer members of Ely cathedral, in which he was prebend: he left £100 to be expended in apprenticing poor children of that city: he left £6000 for improving the buildings of the college he preſided over: and finally, left £20,000 to be laid out by his executors in eſtates and lands, to be ſettled by them on the governors of the charity for the relief of the poor widows and children, of the clergy. Accordingly they purchaſed this manor, and other eſtates here, and at Weſt Wratling in Cambridgeſhire, to the amount of upwards of £1000 a year, and ſettled them, in 1716, agreeable to his will . This manor was purchaſed from Edward Hooley, Eſquire, for £16,000; which occaſioned the honorable mark of gratitude in this church. It is ſingular, that Francis Turner, biſhop [Page 198] of Ely, loſt his preferments in 1690, for refuſing the oaths to William and Mary, when this gentleman, his brother, had the good fortune to preſerve his, without injuring his conſcience.

IN 1702, the laſt year allowed for undergoing the teſt, he left London on the 28th of July, and went to Oxford with a full reſolution to ſacrifice all his preferments on the firſt of Auguſt, the laſt day allowed by the act. He wiſely made no reſignation, well knowing that his refuſal would be ample deprivation. Whether he was forgotten, or whether the omiſſion was winked at, does not appear; but he retained all his benefices to his dying day *.

THIS charitable divine is placed ſtanding in a graceful attitude, in his maſter of arts robes, in his own hair, under a canopy ſupported by two fluted pillars of the Corinthian order, of colored marble. On the ſide of him is Religion, repreſented by a woman on a celeſtial globe, with a croſs in one, and a font in the other hand. On the laſt is inſcribed [...]. The doctor ſtands on a terreſtrial globe, with a book in his hand, in which is written [...]. The account of his various charities is placed on the pediment.

IN a corner of an aile, to make room for this ſumptuous monument, was removed the tomb of a croſs-legged knight, armed in mail, and partly covered with a ſurtout. One hand is on his breaſt, the other on his ſword. On an enormous ſhield, which is belted to his body, is a rude figure of a lion paſſant guardant, and crowned. He is ſuppoſed to be one of the Gilbert de Gants, the [Page 199] antient owners. There were five of them. The firſt was great nephew to the Conqueror; the laſt died in 1295.

FROM hence I deſcended to the great road: the country hilly and clayey. The quarries are of a coarſe grit ſtone, often filled with ſhells, but of too ſhattery a nature to be uſed, except in ordinary buildings. A few miles farther is an eminence, called Forſter's Booth, ſo named from a booth erected here by one Forſter, a poor countryman. It grew at length into a ſcattered ſtreet, of ſeveral houſes and carriers inns, through which runs the Watling-ſtreet road in a direct line to Touceſter, four miles diſtant.

THIS is a pretty conſiderable town, ſeated on a plain, [Note: TOUCESTER.] on a ſmall ſtream called the Tove, from which the name is derived; Touceſter, or the caſtle on the Tove. The great tumulus on the eaſt ſide of the town, points out of the ſite of the ſpeculum or watchtower. The Roman coins found in digging about, prove it to have been an appendage to a Roman ſtation, whoſe name has never reached us. The Saxons profited of this little fortreſs, and added the foſs which ſurrounded it. From them it received its preſent title of the Bury, or Borough, to which has been ſince added the double tautology of Berry Mounthill.

THE Saxons called the town Tofeceaſtre. In the time of Edward the Elder it was almoſt ruined by the ravages of the Danes; but in 921, the king determined to reſtore it, and for that purpoſe detached part of his forces; who, ſoon after their arrival, were attacked by the Danes reſident in Northampton and Leiceſter *; but, aſſiſted by the townſmen, they repelled the barbarians; and Edward, in order to prevent future inſults, fortified the whole place [Page 200] with a ſtone wall *. But time hath deſtroyed every veſtige of it.

THIS manor, after various changes, became the property of the famous Sir Richard Empſon, one of the inſtruments of the avarice and oppreſſion of Henry VII; who, in 1509, loſt his head, with Edmund Dudley, on Tower-hill; perhaps more deſervedly than legally. Empſon had been the ſon of a ſieve-maker in this town: by his great abilities in the profeſſion of the law, he was promoted to the chancellorſhip of the duchy of Lancaſter; but by his unbounded ſubmiſſion to the will of his rapacious maſter, fell a victim, in the next reign, to the demands of an enraged nation. At preſent, the manor belongs to the Earl of Pomfret, who derives it from his anceſtor Richard Fermor, a merchant of Calais, and a younger brother of the antient houſe of Fermors, of Oxfordſhire.

THERE was a church here at the Conqueſt, [Note: CHURCH.] which was given by the Conqueror to the abbey of St. Wandragaſile, in Normandy. In the preſent, is nothing remarkable, excepting the tomb of William Sponne, archdeacon of Norfolk, and rector of this pariſh in the reign of Henry VI. who founded here a college and chantry for two prieſts to ſay maſs for his ſoul, and the ſouls of his friends. At the diſſolution, it was worth £19. 6s. 8d. a year . He was alſo a great benefactor to the town, and his charities are ſtill felt here, governed by feoffees, conſiſting of fifteen of the principal inhabitants.

HIS figure is repreſented recumbent, dreſſed in a red gown, which reaches round his feet, with ermine hood and ſleeves. Beneath is another repreſentation of him after death, with a ſunk [Page 201] noſe and emaciated body, and all the changes wrought by that fell monſter on the human frame.

THE town is ſupported by the great concourſe of paſſengers, and by a manufacture of lace, and a ſmall one of ſilk ſtockings. The firſt was imported from Flanders, and carried on with much ſucceſs in this place, and ſtill more in the neighboring county of Buckingham.

I TOOK a walk about a mile eaſt of the town, to ſee Eaſton-Neſton, [Note: EASTON-NESTON.] the ſeat of the Earl Pomfret. The wings were built by Sir Chriſtopher Wren, in 1682; the center by Hawkeſmore, about twenty years after, who is ſaid to have departed greatly from the original deſign. It has nine windows in front, and is enriched with pilaſters. The inſide has been long ſince deſpoiled of its curious portraits and valuable ſtatues: the latter having been preſented to the univerſity of Oxford, by the late Counteſs of Pomfret, grandaughter to the lord chancellor Jeffries.

THIS manor was purchaſed by the ſame Richard Fermor, [Note: MANOR.] in 1530, from Thomas, ſon of Sir Richard Empſon. The antient houſe ſtood below the church, in a park incloſed by Sir Richard, by licence from Henry VII, at the time it came into the poſſeſſion of Mr. Fermor. He lived here with boundleſs hoſpitality, till the year 1540, when, for ſending 8d. and a couple of ſhirts, to one Nicholas Thane, his confeſſor, then in priſon at Buckingham for denying the king's ſupremacy, he incurred the tyrant's diſpleaſure. He fell under a praemunire, and, in his old-age, being ſtripped of all he had, was forced to live with the parſon of, Wapenham (whom he had preſented); which he did for ſeveral years, with conſummate piety and reſignation *.

[Page 202] THE recovery of part of his fortune was owing to a ſingular accident. During his proſperous days he kept, as uſual in thoſe days, in the eſtabliſhment of people of rank, a fool or jeſter: his was the noted Wil. Sommers, [Note: WIL. SOMMERS.] who, for his drollery, was promoted to the ſame office under Henry VIII. I have a very ſcarce print of this illuſtrious perſonage, by Delaram, with all the inſignia of his place about him. Wil. with a gratitude not frequent at courts, remembered his old maſter; and in the latter days of Henry, when his conſtitution was weakened by infirmities, took occaſion, by ſome well-timed ſpeech, to awaken the king's conſcience; who, touched with a compunction rarely known to him, ordered reſtitution *; but died before it could be effected. His pious ſucceſſor, Edward VI. reſtored to him this manor, that of Touceſter, and ſome others of his eſtates, and added many grants, by way of compenſation for the injury done him; but all fell ſhort of the great loſſes he had ſuſtained from the cruel father. He returned to his houſe, which he enjoyed only two years, dying in January 1552-3. He ſeemed to have a preſage of his end; for on the day of his death he had invited a number of his friends and neighbors, took his leave of them, retired to his cloſet, and was found dead in an attitude of devotion . His tomb, with his figure in braſs, and that of his wife, are ſtill to be ſeen in the adjacent church.

THERE are, [Note: CHURCH.] beſides, ſeveral other family-monuments. Sir John Fermor (ſon of Richard) and Maud his wife, are repreſented kneeling at a deſk, beneath an arch: ſhe is dreſſed in a great ruff and lappets. He, perhaps out of reſpect to his father's ſufferings in [Page 203] the cauſe of the ſee of Rome, received the honor of Knight of the Bath at the coronation of queen Mary. He died in 1571.

His ſon Sir George lies in alabaſter, recumbent and armed, with peaked beard and ſmall whiſkers. His wife, Mary daughter of Thomas Curzon, of Addington, Bucks, lies by him, dreſſed in a gown tied neatly with ribands from top to bottom, a quilled ruff, and great tete à caleche. Beneath are repreſented, kneeling, their ſeven ſons and eight daughters. Above all, is a vaſt quantity of ornaments, arms, &c. &c. This gentleman might, like Sir Fulk Grevil, have boaſted of being the friend of Sir Philip Sydney, having contracted an intimacy with him in the wars in the Netherlands, where he ſerved all his youth, under William prince of Orange, and walked at the funeral of the celebrated Engliſh hero. He alſo improved himſelf by foreign travel; lived at home with vaſt ſplendor and hoſpitality; and, on June 11, 1603, his houſe had the honor of being the place of meeting between James I. and his queen, on her journey from Scotland, to receive her new crown. Here they dined, and were entertained, with all their trains, in a princely manner *. He quitted this life in 1612.

SIR Hatton Fermor, who with nine other gentlemen were knighted at the above interview, is alſo buried here. He died of the conſequences of a broken leg, in 1620. He and his lady are very elegant figures, placed ſtanding: he armed; in great boots, flapping down; vaſt whiſkers; peaked beard; and, what was not in uſe at the time of his death, a cravat. It ſeems the monument was not erected till 1662, when his widow Anna, daughter of Sir William Cockain, lord mayor of London, gave this proof of her affection.

[Page 204] She is dreſſed in a looſe gown, and with long flowing treſſes: her hand is on an hour-glaſs; his on a ſcroll: between, is a buſt of a man in long hair: above, are three moſt aukward figures of kneeling women. I muſt not quit the lady, without ſaying ſhe ſuffered, with exemplary patience, a long impriſonment and great confiſcations, on account of the loyalty of her family; which were rewarded with a peerage in the perſon of her ſon Sir William Fermor.

FROM hence I continued my journey ſouthward, and much of the way near the borders of Whittlewood, or Whittlebury Foreſt, [Note: WHITTLEBURY FOREST.] which ſtill continues wooded for ſeveral miles in length, and of different extents in breadth, in a moſt deep and clayey country. Much of the timber is cut in rotation, but in parts towards the edge of Buckinghamſhire, are conſiderable quantities of good oak. This foreſt remained in the crown till the year 1685, when Henry Fitz-roy, firſt duke of Grafton, was appointed hereditary ranger. The preſent duke hath an elegant houſe, called Wakefield Lodge *, originally built by Mr. Claypole, ſon-in-law to Oliver Cromwell, and ranger of the foreſt. This was one of the five tracts, called walks; viz. Wakefield, Shelbrook, Hazelbury, Shrob, and Hanger. Fourteen townſhips are allowed the right of common in the open coppices and ridings, from the principle of juſtice, that ſome reparation might be made to them for the damages ſuſtained by the deer. In this great tract here are two lawns, i. e. ſpots incloſed with pales, for paſture for the deer: one is Wakefield Lawn, the other Sholbrook Lawn, which are ſecluded from the foreſt cattle.

[Page 205] THAT fierce animal the wild cat, is ſtill met with in this foreſt. In the reign of Richard I. the abbot and convent of Peterborough had a charter for hunting in this place the hare, the fox, and the wild cat; which was confirmed to them, in 1253, by Henry III *. By theſe charters, the wild cat ſhould be added to the beaſts of foreſt, or of venerie; which the book of St. Albans, and old Sir Triſtram, in his worthie Treatiſe of Hunting, confined to the hart, the hynde, the hare, the boare, and the wolfe: the hart and hind being ſeparated, becauſe the ſeaſon of hunting them was different; yet they remain in ſpecies ſtill the ſame. Beaſts of the chace (which was an inferior ſort of foreſt) were the buck, the doe, the fox, the martion, and the roe .

THE fondneſs that ſeized the regular clergy for the pleaſures of the chace, did not appear till after the Conqueſt. The Saxon clergy were expreſsly forbidden the amuſement. King Edgar directs the prieſt ‘to be neither a hunter nor hawker, nor yet a tippler; but to keep cloſe to his books, as becomes a man of his order .’

THE canon law ſtill preſerved its ſeverity, and forbad to ſpiritual perſons the amuſement of the chace. This probably was rather deſigned to check what might by the exceſs eſtrange them from their ſacred function. The common law, from a principle of good ſenſe and humanity, permitted the recreation, from theſe arguments; that nothing could contribute more effectually to the performance of their duty than good health, reſulting from fit exerciſe; as nothing could diſqualify them ſo greatly as the diſorders ariſing from a ſedentary life. This indulgence probably [Page 206] ſoon ended in abuſe. In the twelfth century, we find Abelard unhappy in preſiding over a monaſtery of huntſmen. Chaucer, as I have before quoted, flings a fine ridicule on the ſporting monk. Finally, the chace became ſo neceſſary an appendage to the eccleſiaſtical ſtate, that every ſee had a number of parks: that of Norwich, thirteen; and the ſixth mortuary which the king clamed on the death of a prelate, was his kennel of hounds.

PASS by Potters Pery, [Note: POTTERS PERY.] a village which takes its name from the manufacture of coarſe ware, ſuch as flower-pots, &c. which has been long carried on here. The clay is yellowiſh, pure, and firm; yet the pots made with it are very brittle, unleſs glazed; when they endure the weather as well as any.

THE poſt-road is ſtill continued the whole way on or near the Watling-ſtreet. Near Potters Pery I quitted it, [Note: PASSENHAM.] through curioſity of viſiting Paſſenham, about a mile or two diſtant, on the banks of the Ouze, near this village. Edward the Elder encamped here to cover his workmen, who were employed in building the walls of Touceſter *, from being interrupted by the Danes. A ſquare entrenchment is ſuppoſed to have been caſt up by him, and garriſoned for that purpoſe.

THE church is ſmall, [Note: CHURCH.] and without ailes; dedicated to Guthlaius, the ſaint of the fens. It was rebuilt in 1626, at the ſole expence of Sir Robert Banaſtre. This gentleman was lord of the manor; he died in 1649, aged about eighty. His figure is a halflength, with a book in his hand, placed againſt the wall. His epitaph informs us, that he was born at Wem, in Shropſhire; that he was bred at court, and ſerved three princes; that he had three [Page 207] wives, and by the laſt an only daughter, who conveyed the eſtate, by marriage with William lord Maynard, into that family; a younger branch of which poſſeſſes it, as I apprehend, at preſent.

I REGAINED the great road, and paſſed through the hamlet of Old Stratford, ſeated on rich meadows, [Note: OLD STRATFORD.] watered by the Ouze' which riſes in this county, not remote from Brackly. This place is reaſonably ſuppoſed to have been the Lactodorum, or Lactorodum, of the Itinerary, as the diſtance ſuits extremely well, and Roman coins have been found in the neighboring fields. Antiquaries derive it from Llech dwr, and Llech rhyd: one ſignifying the ſtone on the water; the other, the ſtone on the ford *: a name beſtowed on it by the Britons, probably becauſe the bank of the river was marked by a military ſtone on this great military way. I here croſs the river into BUCKINGHAMSHIRE; which, with Bedfordſhire and Hertfordſhire, formed the country of the Catticuchlani. The preſent name is, according to Mr. Cambden, taken from the quantity of beeches found in parts of it; a word derived from the Saxon bucken. Two arguments ſerve to confirm the aſſertion of Caeſar, that this tree was not found in Britain at the time of his invaſion: one is, that the woods of it are merely local, and confined to a very few of our ſouthern counties: the other is, that the Britons had no name for it, but [Page 206] [...] [Page 207] [...] [Page 208] what they derived from the Latin fagus; for they ſtiled it, as we do ſtill, Ffawydden, and Pren ffawydd.

ON croſſing the Ouze I entered Stoney Stratford, [Note: STONEY STRATFORD.] a town built on each ſide of the Watling-ſtreet. It ſuffered greatly by fire on May the 19th, 1742, which almoſt deſtroyed the whole place; but it was ſoon reſtored by the vigour of Engliſh charity. One church (that of St. Giles) has never been rebuilt; the body of the other (St. Magdalene's) is reſtored in a very handſome manner, by Mr. Irons, architect in Warwick, and, I ſuppoſe, enlarged ſufficiently to ſupply the want of the other. St. Giles's had been a chantry, valued at £20. 2s. 6d. a year; and was at the time of its ruin a curacy: St. Magdalene's was a chapel belonging to Wolverton, but now in the preſentation of the pariſhioners.

MY journey was continued along the Street road to the 47th ſtone, [Note: BLECHELEY CHURCH.] where, tempted by the ſame of certain monuments in Blecheley church, I digreſſed about a mile and a quarter to the right. I found there a very fine alabaſter tomb of Richard lord Grey of Wilton, [Note: TOMB OF LORD GREY.] reſtored by the celebrated antiquarian Brown Willis, Eſquire, who added an inſcription, and in the front the arms. From the former we find, that beſides Richard, his ſon Reginald, who died February 22, 1493; and his great granſon Edmund, who died Water-hall, on May 6th 1611; were interred here.

THIS Richard lord Grey, by will, dated at Blecheley, Auguſt 12, 1442, bequeaths his body to be buried in the church of the B. V. Mary of Blecheley; and directs his executors to find a prieſt, for four years, to perform divine ſervice in the ſaid church for his ſoul; and that they make a tomb of alabaſter or marble, according to his ſtate and degree. He bequeaths to the lady Margaret [Page 209] his wife, his mano [...] of B [...]y-hall, in Eſſex, for life. The reſidue of his lands and goods he gives to his executors, to diſpo [...]e of for the health of his ſoul; viz. the lady Margaret Grey, [...] Darcy, Eſquire. John [...]ethal, Eſquire, Roger Eton Clere, rector of Blecheley, and William Barker *.

THE tomb is of alabaſter: his figure is armed, his hair cropt, his face without a beard; round his neck is a collar of SS, and round the lower part of his armour is another collar of jewels, in the midſt of which is a ſmall ſhield with the croſs St. George; for he was made Knight of the Garter by Richard II. On the fingers of his left hand are not fewer than ſix rings.

NOTWITHSTANDING it may be thought tedious to many, yet I cannot forbear deſcribing two monuments, full of the faſhionable [...]blem, p [...]n, and quibble of the times. The firſt is in memory of THOMAS SPARKE, S. See. Theol. Dr. [...]le [...]er bujus eccle. reb [...]or vi [...]iſſimus, [Note: DR. SPARKE.] as inſcribed round the oval that contains his figure. A little altar with ſparkling flames is placed near his name. The monument is a ſmall but extremely neat one of braſs ſet in a white marble frame: on the top is the creſt, a demi [...]albot rampant, ſtudded with [...]orteauxes, and ſparks of fire iſſuing from his mouth [...] on the braſs is finely engraven an altar-tomb, on the ta [...]e of which is an urn, with ſparks iſſuing from the mouth; and on the [...]elly is written

Non extincta, ſepulta licet; S [...]i [...]tilla favilla eſt.

ON the [...] ſide of the urn ſtands Death, in [...]rm of a ſkeleton, [...] a ſpade, on the flat part of which, going to cover the mouth of the urn, is wrote Mors teg [...]; and an angel in the he heavens [Page 210] founding a trumpet, from the end of which iſſues theſe words, Retege [...] [...]untius iſ [...]e [...]; and on a ſ [...]r [...], in the ſame ha [...] is written, Iſ [...]a cadu [...] ro [...] eſt: juſt above which, in the other hand of the angel, is a freſh-blown roſe, inſcribed Sed [...], about the angel's head, and in the clouds, are ſeveral ſta [...] and quite at top is written, Qu [...] [...]ultos ad juſt [...]m, [...] ſ [...]ell [...] ſemper ſpl [...]ndebunt.

[...], with her uſual attributes of ears, eyes, and tongue [...] blowing a trumpet, ſtanos on the other ſide of the urn. On each ſide of her are two ſcrolls: o [...] one [...]s▪ ‘Vindex fam [...] li [...]ros ſa [...]a [...]l to [...]lit ab ur [...]a.’ on the other, ‘Si [...] S [...]ntilla micat quem tegit atra cinis.’

Fame holds in one hand a book, near the mouth of the [...] on which is written Funer [...] Sermons. On other books, ſcat [...] about are inſcribed, A Perſuaſive to Conformity; A comfort [...] [...]reatiſe for a troubled [...], Motives to Qu. Elizabeth for Succeſſor, A Treatiſe of Ca [...]chiſing; A Confutation of J. Albin [...]word out of the mouth of the trumpet, The high way to Heaven. Th [...] were the works of the Doctor, who was a moſt famous contro [...] [...]ia [...]ut, in the reign [...] of Elizabeth and [...] I. He is engraven [...] front of the tomb, a half-lenght, in gown, caſſock, ſcarf, ſcull- [...] ruff, and ſquare beard. On each ſide of him is a ſhield: on o [...] is [...]: on the other, [...] a noſtr [...] ſunt ſpiritual [...]. [...] ſide of the figure are three clergymen in their habits, [...] with a church o [...] each; and beyond them two women in high crowned hats. Theſe five were h [...]s children, whom he ad [...] [Page 211] [...]es, Filioli cavete vobis ab idolis; and above their heads are [...] lines:

Bis geniti, retinete, fidem zelumque paternum:
Hoeredis veſtri ſic dece [...] eſſe patris
Sic dece [...], O mea tun [...] quam molli [...]er oſſa cubabunt
Si licet in natis ſic ſupereſſe meis:
Scintillam S [...]tilla meam ſi veſtra ſequetur
Orba ſua flamma mor [...] erit ara Dei.

[...] the other ſide of his picture are repreſented his pariſhioners, [...] theſe verſes:

[...] sacra in populo ſignatur epiſtola Paul [...]
Sic mea in h [...] ſancto lucet imago grege.
Co [...]poris in [...]abula datur imperfecta; ſed ill [...]
Cordi [...]us in veſtris viva figura mei e [...]t.
Viva mei, dixi, CHRISTI a [...] ſit vera figura;
S [...] mini ſi populus vera figura Dei.

[...] Doctor died in 1616; his wife the year before. Luckily, [...] was Roſe; which afforded freſh matter of alluſions.

Sixty-eight years a fragrant ROSE ſhe laſted:
No vile reproach her virtues ever blaſted.
Her autumn paſt, expects a glorious ſpring,
A [...]ond better life, more flouriſhing.

[...] is in memory of Mrs Fa [...]h Taylor, wife of Mr. [...], miniſter of the pariſh, with many pretty ſportings [...] Fa [...]th; but the dulneſs of this ſpecies of epitaph has [...] [...]me, as I fear it has the reader, that I dare not venture [Page 212] on the tranſcript of [...]hat was probably [...]uch admired at the p [...] [...] of [...].

I [...] I got into [...] great road at Fenny Stratfford, [Note: FENNY [...].] [...] from its [...] The chapel, which is in the par [...]ſ [...] [...] as [...] at the expence of Mr. [...] His [...] was nea [...] the church [...] for the works of his own hands, he [...] the Reverend Mr. William Cole, the [...] [...] of the pariſh, the following inſcription; which Mr. Cole was requeſted to [...] to be inſcribed on a white marble ſtone [...]i [...]cered with [...]ck, to be laid over him in this chapel.

[...]

[...] W [...]l [...]s, antiquarius

[...]

The Wil [...] [...] berri [...]

[...] Sancti [...] A. D. 1675

[...] eſt.

[...]. Anno Domini 1760.

Aetatis [...]uae [...]8.

O Chriſ [...]e Seter e [...] J [...]ex,

[...] [...]ecatorum primo

M [...]ereco [...] et propitius eſto.

ON the [...] are the [...] of all benefactors of ten pounds [...] upwards The chapel had been originally a chantry *. [...] was dedicated to St. Martin, out of reſpect [...] who happened to die on that day. The ſame [...] [Page 213] phyſician firſt made a ſettlement in this pariſh, by the purchaſe of the manor of Blecheley, and that of Fenny Stratford, from the [...] George Villiers duke of Buckingham.

FROM hence I kept a gentle aſcent to Little B [...]ckhill, ſeated on the ſleep of a long range of ſand-hills, divided by pleaſant [...] dingles, which extend for a conſiderable way, and form a any frontier at this end of the county. Very ſoon after my [...]age over them, I entered the county of BEDFORD, [...] keep as far as Dunſtable on the Wa [...]ling-ſtreet, which goes di [...] to this town. In the beginning it croſſes a moſt undula [...]ed [...]. On the right are the woods and park of Battleſdon, a ſeat [...] [...]rs. Page. In the bottom go through Hockley in the Hole; [Note: HOCKLEY.] [...] range of houſes, moſtly inns, built on each ſide of the [...] The Engliſh rage of novelty is ſtrongly tempted by one ſa [...] publican, who informs us on his ſign, of news-papers [...] to be ſeen at his houſe every day in the week.

[...], place, whoſe proper name is Occleie, or Hockeliff, [Note: HOCKELIFF.] was [...], with a maſter and ſeveral brethren, dedicated to [...] Baptiſt *. In 1 [...]83 here was a [...]eudal of quarrel, between [...] of the priory of D [...]nſtaple and thoſe of William de [...], a potent baron; in which one John the Smith was [...] on the ſide of the priory, and Thomas Muſta [...]a, a fierce [...] o [...] the other . In old times, theſe were very frequent, [...] fatal: men were always formed into [...]rties, and ready [Page 214] to [...]rſue the moſt bloody ends on the moſt trivial occaſions.

TWO miles farther, [Note: [...] ] I reached the foot of Chalkhill, formerly of a tremendous ſteepneſs, and the terror of country paſſengers; at preſent formed into an eaſy aſcent. This is the firſt ſpecimen the traveller [...] with of the great chalky ſtr [...]um which interſect [...] the kingdom. A lint drawn from Dorcheſter, in the county of Dorſet, to the county of Norfolk, would include all the chalky be [...] of the kingdom; for none is found in any quantity to the weſt of that line. This earth was of great eſtimation, and an article of comm [...]ce in the times of the Romans. The workers in it ha [...] [...] their goddeſs Nehele [...]nia, who preſided over it. To her [...] we find this votive altar,

DEAE NEHELENNIAE.

O [...] merce [...]ite conſervata [...]

M. ſecundus [...]

Negetor Cretarius

Brit [...]nni [...]ianus

[...]. [...] L. M.

AFTER deſcending the [...]ll, [Note: [...] ] I turned about half a mile out of [...] to viſit M [...]e [...]' [...] Bower, a very large Daniſh camp of [...], ſurrounded with a great rampart with a ditch [...] ſide [...] on a plain with a portion verging towards a [...]. Its hiſtory is unknown, yet mer [...]ts a [...] the [...] of the [...]nes are not very common [...].

[...], [Note: [...] ] enter Dunſtable, a long town, [...] ſide of the Wa [...]ling ſtreet, and interſected in the midd [...] [...] [Page 215] [...]e I [...]nield-ſtreet. This town had been the Magiovinum, or Magi [...], of the Itinerary: and probably had four port [...], anſwerable [...] the great [...]oads. The Icknield-ſtreet iſſues out on the north ſide of the church. Antiquarians derive the name, very properly, from Maes Gwyn, or the wh [...]e field, from the color of the chalky [...]. Roman money has been found about the place, which the country people call ma [...]ing money: which, as Dr. Stukely obſerves, [...] have no reference to Maiden's Bower, which belonged to another people. But on a hill, called Caſtle-hill, about half a mile well of it, is a Roman camp: within which, near one end, is a [...] mount, very hollow in the top; and near the outſide of one of the ramparts is a deep hole, probably the place of the draw [...]. The whole ſtands on a [...]t [...]ep promontory, projecting weſt [...].

[...] was certainly occupied by the Saxons, after the de [...] of the Romans. We can indeed only argue from the pre [...] [...] Du [...]-Staple, the mart near the hill. We cannot allow [...] ſh [...]gend, that it was called Dun's Stable, or the ſtable [...] of that name. It probably was a waſte at the time [...] Conqueſt, as many places were, and might become a har [...] [...], by reaſon of the woods with which the country [...]. This determined Henry I. to colonize the ſpot; [...] that purpoſe, he encouraged people by proclamation to [...] and, in order to deſtroy the ſhelter which the foreſt [...], directed the woods to be grubbed up. He alſo [...] [...]oyal palace, called Kingſbury *, which ſtood near the [...] and whoſe ſite is now occupied by a farm-houſe. Here [Page 216] he kept his Chriſtmas in 1123, with his whole court, and received at the ſame time the embaſſy from the earl of Anjou *. He ma [...] the town a borough, beſtowed o [...] it a fair and a market, and various other privileges; particularly, that the inhabitants ſhould not be [...] to be called before the [...]iner [...]t juſtices, but that [...] cauſes ſhould be determined by the juſtices of the king, [...] a jury of twe [...]ve of the burgeſſes . He kept the town [...] in [...]is own hands, and then beſtowed it, with all [...] priveleges (re [...]r [...]ng only his royal reſidence) on the priory, [...] founded here ſome time after the year 1 [...]31, for black [...] honor of St. Peter. At the time of the diſſolution, here [...] prio [...] and twelve canons, whoſe revenues, according to [...] were £344. 13s. 3 d. a year: to Speed, £40 [...]. 14s. 7 d.

THE laſt prior [...] [...]rv [...]ſe Markham, [Note: [...] ] who, with his canon [...] [...]ſcribes to the king's ſupremacy in 1534; and on the diſſolution [...] had a penſion of ſixty pounds a year for life. His reward was the greater, as his conven [...] was the reſidence of the commi [...] [...] for carrying on the divorce between Henry VIII. and Catharine of Arragon; in which he took an active part . The unfortunate princeſs at that time reſided at Ampthill. [...] neighborhood.

THE church, [Note: CHURCH.] and an arch in the wall adjoining, are the only [...] mains of the prio [...]. The front of the church is ſingular, [...] a gallery d [...]vided [...]y c [...]rved gothic arches: a great door with round arch richly c [...]rved with ſcrolls and ovals, including [...] figures. [...] [...]pitals of the pillars cut into groteſque forms. [Page 217] The leſſer door is gothic, richly ornamented with nail heads. Between both doors is a row of falſe arches interlaced; the co [...] conſiſt of very ſingular greater and leſſer joints, placed alternate, not unlike one ſpecies of the foſſils called en [...].

THE ſteeple is attached to one ſide of the front, and has two [...] of niches, [Note: STEEPLE.] now deprived of their ſtatues. Formerly [...] towe [...] correſponded with this: both fell down in [...] and deſtroyed the prior's hall and part of the church *. [...] body was rebuilt in 1273, by the pariſhioners; but one [...] Ch [...]de went to the greateſt expence . The inſide of the church is ſupported with ſix round arches, all plain except one: the windows above are alſo round at the [...]op. Either the date [...] the rebuilding is wrong, or the Saxon or round-arched mode and have continued longer than is generally allowed.

THE church had been originally in form of a croſs, with a [...] the center. Two of the vaſt pillars which ſupported it [...] to be ſeen at the eaſt end.

ABOVE the altar in a large and handſome painting of the Laſt [...]pper; which, with [...] plate and [...]ch pulpit-cloth, were [...] two maiden ſiſters, of the name of Carter.

I [...]ITTED in its place a viſit made to the priory by Henry III. [...] family; when the monks preſented the king with a gilt [...] and the queen with another; and gave his ſon Edward and daughter Margaret a gold claſp apiece. In return, the royal vi [...] beſtowed on the church eight pieces of ſilk; and the king [...] for the making of a thuribule and a pix .

[Page 216] [...] [Page 217] [...]

[Page 218] I [...] with ſome a [...]i [...]nt tombs, [Note: [...] ] dated between the years 1400 and 1500▪ but none of dignity ſufficient to be mentioned. Sir [...] 's [...]amous pedigree-book has preſerved one, in memory of William M [...]lſ [...] and his wife *. Both are dreſſed in their [...] their [...]and in the [...]titule of pr [...]ver. At their feet [...] group of [...], another of ſeven daughters. The [...] of th [...] four evangeliſts are placed at the corners. [...]etween their [...]eet were theſe lines:

[...] ſcciavit et Ali [...].

[...] [...]ors gener [...]li [...]:

[...] hic [...]atos [...]

[...] binos, De [...]s [...] cle [...]e [...]s [...]

THIS gentleman was [...], in the county of Northhamp [...] The name of the [...], [...] Marmore. This ſeems to have been [...] [...]hem [...] celebrates for having three times, three children [...], and twice five children I ſuppoſe they muſt [...] by [...] and h [...]band; for the pedigree gives her but [...] .

BESIDES the religious houſe, was one of friars preachers, who [...]ttled here about 1 [...]59. It was valued only at £4. 18s. 4d; and at the diſſolution its ſite was granted to Sir William Herbert. Theſe brethren as the Chronicle ſays, came ſorely againſt the will of the [...]; but by their intereſt with [...] queen, and courtiers, got leave to ſtay here.. It ſeems the inhabitants of the priory did not like ſuch [Page 219] inſinuating interlopers as Chaucer deſcribes this order to have been, who were ſure to win all the penitent males and females.

Ful ſwetely herde he confeſſion,
And pleſant was his abſolution.

HERE was a houſe or hoſpital for lepers. Whether it was the ſame with that marked at the poſt-houſe, a mile weſt of the town, in the new map, I cannot determine.

THE ſchools here were probably conſiderable; for I find the quarrels between the ſcholars and the townſmen important enough to be mentioned in the Chronicle.

THIS town is now ſupported chiefly by the great paſſage of travellers. A ſmall neat manufacture of ſtraw hats, and baſkets, and toys, maintains many of the poor. In old time the breweries raiſed many of the inhabitants to great wealth. We are told by Hollinſhed of one William Murlie, an eminent brewer in this town, who fallied out in the time of Henry V. to join the fooliſh inſurrection of the Lollards, near London, followed with two led horſes with gilt trappings. He alſo took with him a pair of gilt ſpurs, ready to wear on his receiving from lord Cobham the honor of knighthood *; but had the hard luck to be taken and hung, with them about his neck.

ABOUT four miles from Dunſtable I paſſed by Market Cell, [Note: MARKET CELL.] at preſent a gentleman's ſeat; formerly a nunnery of Benedictines, dedicated to the Holy Trinity of the Wood. Legend aſcribes its [Page 220] origin to Roger, a monk of St. Alban, who, on his return from Jeruſalem, led here an eremetical life; and, taking under his care Chriſtina, a rich virgin of Huntingdon, inſpired her with the ſame contempt of the world. She ſucceeded to his cell, and many temptations reſiſted, many divine viſions viſited by, and many miracles wrought in her favor *. She was patronized by Geoffry, elected abbot of St. Albans in 1119, who built and endowed a houſe, and conſtituted Chriſtina firſt abbeſs. The ſite of ſome adjoining lands were the gift of the dean and chapter of Saint Paul ; but the reſt of the pious work reſulted ſolely from the abbot, who twice rebuilt the ſame, after it had ſuffered by fire : but Mathew Paris complains, that all this was done at the expence of the convent of St. Albans, and even without its conſent , to the great injury of the church. In the time of Henry VIII. Humphry Boucher §, ‘baſe ſunne to the late Berners, did much coſte in tranſlating of the priory into a maner place;’ i. e. converting it into a manſion for himſelf, but left it unfiniſhed. It probably was granted to him; but it afterwards was beſtowed by Edward VI. on George Ferrers **. At the diſſolution it was valued by Dugdale at £.114. 16s. 1d. a year; by Speed at £.143. 18s. 3d.

IT appears that theſe religious were grievouſly oppreſſed by a neighboring knight; of whom they complained in certain lines too ludicrous to be inſerted *†. Whether they got any redreſs does not appear.

[Page 221] AFTER paſſing through the village of the ſame name, built on each ſide of the Watling-ſtreet road, I entered the county of HERTFORD; and near the twenty-eighth mile-ſtone leave on the right Flamſted, [Note: FLAMSTED.] where ſtood a ſmall priory of Benedictine nuns, founded in the time of king Stephen, by Roger de Tonei. The manor had been granted by the Conqueror to Ralph de Tonei. His predeceſſor was a Saxon knight, called Thurnoth, who, with the true ſpirit of the times, engaged with thirteen ſoldiers, Waldef, and Thurman, to protect all paſſengers from the thieves and wild beaſts which then infeſted the road; and in time of war, to protect the church of St. Albans with all their might. Leofftan, abbot of that convent in the time of the Confeſſor, facilitated the undertaking, by cutting down the great woods on the ſide of the Watling-ſtreet, which gave ſhelter to robbers. He beſtowed on Thurnoth this manor; who, in return, preſented Leofftan with five ounces of gold and a fair palfrey. Thurnoth, at the Conqueſt, reſiſted the power of the Norman invader; who beſtowed it on de Tonei; who directed that the ſame ſervices ſhould be ſtrictly performed to the abbey *.

ABOUT three miles further, go through Redburn, a ſmall town, [Note: REDBURN.] built like the former, on each ſide of the antient road. At this place was diſcovered the bones of St. Amphibalus, the noble Briton, [Page 222] who lodging at the houſe of St. Alban, at Verulam, proved the means of his converſion. In the Diocleſian perſecution he was diligently ſought after; but St. Alban, generouſly determined not to give up his gueſt, promoted his eſcape by putting on his preceptor's cloak, and ſuffering himſelf to be ſeized by the ſoldiers in his ſtead *. Amphibalus for a time evaded their fury; but was at length ſeized, and underwent a moſt cruel death , on the ſpot on which his pious convert was martyred. The Chriſtians ſtole the body, and gave it a private interment at this place. In 1178, the reliques were removed to St. Albans, enſhrined near thoſe of his fellow-ſufferer; and a prior and three monks, with 20s. a year, were appointed guardians of the ſacred depoſit. I am ſorry to find, that, after all, the very exiſtence of this Saint is doubted; for there are ſome who believe that the Saint was no more than an amphibalus, a long cloak, which St. Alban, before he went to execution, threw about him; which being at length perſonified, was canonized, and received into the Kalendar .

A CELL, conſiſting of a prior and a few Benedictines from St. Albans, was placed here. It was dedicated to St. Amphibalus and his companions, and was inhabited before 1195. After the diſſolution, it was, with the manor, granted to John Cork .

THE preſent great road, a little beyond this place quits the Watling-ſtreet, which runs direct on the right to Verulanium. The former can boaſt of no great extent of view, but is bounded by [Page 223] beautiful riſings varied with woods, and incloſures dreſſed with a garden-like elegance. The common ſoil is almoſt covered with flints: the ſtratum beneath is chalk, which is uſed for a manure. [Note: CHALK.] Pliny deſcribes this Britiſh earth under the title of Creta argentaria; and adds petitur ex alto in centenos pedes actis puteis ore anguſtatis: intus ut in metallis ſpatiante vena, hac maxime Britannia utitur *. This very method is uſed in the county at preſent. The farmer ſinks a pit, and (in the terms of a miner) drives out on all ſides, leaving a ſufficient roof, and draws up the chalk in buckets, through a narrow mouth. Pliny informs us, in his remarks on the Britiſh marls then, that they will laſt eighty years; and that there is not an example of any perſon being obliged to marl his land twice in his life . An experienced farmer, whom I met with in Hertfordſhire, aſſured me, that he had about thirty years before made uſe of this manure on a field of his, and that, ſhould he live to the period mentioned by the Roman naturaliſt, he thought he ſhould not have occaſion of a repetition.

THIS bottom is watered by the ſmall ſtream of the Verlume, Ver, or Mure; which riſes at Rowbeach, beyond Market-ſtreet; flows by Flamſted, Redburn, and St. Albans; and loſes itſelf and name in the Coln, a little N. E. of Colney-ſtreet.

ABOUT a mile and a half from St. Albans I turned out of the road to the right, to viſit Gorhambury, [Note: GORHAMBURY.] the venerable ſeat of that glory of our country Sir Francis Bacon viſcount Verulam. His matchleſs talents, his deplorable weakneſſes, and his merited fall, have been the ſubjects of ſo many able pens, that it would be a [Page 224] preſumption in me to enter into a detail either of his life or works. I ſhall prefer giving an account of the place, and perhaps touch accidentally on what may relate to one whom Mr. WALPOLE juſtly ſtiles ‘ The Prophet of Arts, which Newton was ſent afterwards to reveal.’

THIS manor was, from very antient times, part of the lands of the abbey of St. Albans: the original name is not delivered to us; that which it has at preſent was derived from Robert de Gorham, elected abbot of the houſe in 1151. Mr. Salmon conjectures, that he might have built here a villa *: a luxury not unfrequent with the abbots of the richer houſes. In 1540, Henry VIII. made a grant of it to Ralph, afterwards Sir Ralph Rowlet; who ſold it to Sir Nicholas Bacon, the worthy and able lord keeper, and father of the great lord Verulam. The elegance of his taſte was apparent in his buildings; which confirm the obſervation of Lloyd , that "his uſe of learned artiſts was continual." To him we are indebted for Redgrave in Suffolk, and the ſeat in queſtion. In both he adhered to his rational motto, Mediocria Firma. He is ſaid to have departed a little from it in the inſtance of Redgrave, but not till after his royal miſtreſs, who honored him with a viſit there, told him, ‘You have made your houſe too little for your lordſhip.’ 'No, madam,' replied he; ‘but your highneſs has made me too big for the houſe.’ But after this, he added the wings .

Figure 5. GORHAMBURY.

Some lines ove [...] the ſtatue of Orpheus, that once ſtood on the en [...] into the orchard; ſhew what a waſte the place was before [...] poſſeſſed by this great man.

Horrida nuper eram aſpectu Intebraequ [...] ſerarum;
Ruricolis tantum numinibuſque locus.
Edomitor fauſto hic dum forte ſuperveni [...] Orph [...]us,
Ul [...]e [...]ius qui me no [...] finit eſſe rudem:
[...]cat avulſis virgulta vi [...]e [...]tia truncis:
E [...]ſedem quae vel diis placuiſſe poteſt.
Si [...]qu [...] mei cultor, ſic eſt [...] cultus et Orpheu [...]:
Floreat O noſter cultus amorque diu.

[Page 226] [...]ouſe (no longer [...], * but to re [...] [...] [...]phered on the walls, [...] illuſtrious antients [...]. This room ſeemed to [...] favorite ſummer-room of the [...] for the enjoyment [...] from the [...] of his houſe . Mo [...] [...] between the villas of the [...] countrymen This building, [...] [...] [...]ble gal [...] [...] placed at different [...] to mind many parts of the villa, [...] owner.

[...] over the [...]-piece is [...] II. [Note: [...] ] Moſt of the others [...] [...] of [...] beginning of the laſt century.

[Note: [...] ] [...] of the [...] [...] of his or any age appears [...] [...] who ſucceeded his brother Anthony [...] Much is ſaid of his depravity [...] of his a [...] ſawing after his fa [...] [...] I look or the la [...] part of his [...] as the period to [...] with greateſt dignity. That ſoul which [...] [...] beneath the temptation of corruption, ar [...] [...] by d [...] and ſuperior to obloquy. He paſſed [...] § [Page 227] [...] days in labors which have made him the admiration of ſucceedings times. He was then diſengaged from buſineſs, which [...]d his [...]nius, and was ſupported (notwithſtanding assertion, [...]me contrary) by a great penſion (£1800 2 year) which [...]d him to purpoſe his ſtudies at c [...], removed from every [...] of the embarraſſments of poverty.

His portait is a full-length, by Varſomer, dreſſed In his than [...]'s robes.

HERE is beſides, in one of the room, another portrait of [...] and a buſt of him while a child. N [...] him is his accom [...] kinſman his half-brother Sir Natha [...] B [...], [Note: SIR NATH BACON] Knight of [...] [...], leaning back in [...] chair, in a g [...] [...] laced, yel [...] [...]kings, a dog by him, and [...]ord and pallet hung up. In the art of paintings none," ſays P [...], "deſ [...] more reſpect and admiration than Maſter N [...] Bacon, of Brome [...], not inferior, in my judgment, to our ſk [...]ulleſt [...] He improved his ta [...] by travelling into Italy;. [...] in this home, as a proof of the excellency of his perſor [...], this por [...], and a moſt beautiful one of a cook, a perfect with an old game-keeper: behind is a variety of dead [...] particular a ſwan, whoſe plumage is expreſſed with [...] [...]le [...]o [...]neſs and gloſs.

In the houſe is a half-length of a beautiful woman reading, [...] Melancholy Cock; perhaps the ſame with the former. [...] who, [Note: COUNTERS OF SUFFOLK.] like lord [...], [Note: [...] Gentlemen, Mr. Walp [...]le's [...] Painting, i. 163, where the [...] [...] is engraven.] fell under the charge of cor [...] ſhould have been placed next to him In the room is a [Page 228] fine ful-length of the counteſs of Suffolk, daughter of Sir Henry [...]word, and wife to the lord tre [...]. She is dreſſed in whi [...], [...] in a great [...], [...] b [...] [...] expoſed: her waiſt ſhow and ſwelings, for ſhe was [...] proliſ [...]. This lady had un [...] [...] and was extrem [...] [...] to in [...] [...]varics, and took bribes from [...]. Sir [...]ran [...] Ba [...], in [...] in the ſtar-chamber againſt her huſband, wittily compares her to an exchange wo [...], who kept her ſhop, while S [...] John Bingley, a [...] of the Exchequer, and a tool of her's, cried [...] Her beauty was remarkable, and I fear the made a bad uſe of her charms. "Lady [...]," ſays the famous Anne C [...], in the d [...]ary, under the year 1019, ‘had good face of [...], which ſpoiled that good face of [...] had bought to other much miſery, and to herſelf gre [...] is, [...]ch [...] in much unhappineſs.’

A [...] of T [...] duke of Norfolk, [Note: [...] ] is a bonnet, ſo [...] of the Garter, and a where rod: an unfor [...] [...], who through weakneſs and ambition, aſpired to be huſband to the [...] queen of Scots, and for that, and his practice for her [...] [...]ead in 1572.

A [...] Thomas Wentwort [...] and of Clev [...] [...], [Note: [...] ] [...] at the creation of Henry prince of W [...]. He [...], with a red [...], turnover, and yellow hair. He was [...]p [...] or the guard to Charles [...] a diſtinguiſhed [...] the Reſtor [...], and enjoyed his for m [...] [...].

Figure 6. COUNTESS OF SUFFOLK.

[Page 229] A REMARKABLE picture of Sir Thomas Meautys, [Note: SIR THO. MEAUTYS.] ſecretary to lord Verulam. His dreſs confirms the account of the choice he made of his ſervants, whom he ſelected from the young, the prodigal, and expenſive *. Sir Thomas makes a moſt finical appearance: his habit elegant: has on a ſaſh, a hat with a white feather, laced turnover, a long love-lock extended on his left arm, an ear-ring in one ear, a ſpear in the other, and brown boots. Thus he is repreſented as a ſmart office-clerk, walking in his new-acquired park; for he was clerk of the privy council to two kings: and got poſſeſſion of Gorhambury from his maſter, who conveyed it to him on foreſeeing his fall. Like a grateful ſervant, Meautys erected a handſome monument to him in a neighboring church, more to ſhew his reſpect, than from any neceſſity of endeavouring to preſerve the memory of one ſelf-immortalized.

FROM the heirs of Sir Thomas Meautys, [Note: SIR HARBOTTLE GRIMSTON.] this place paſſed by ſale to Sir Harbottle Grimſton, Baronet; whoſe portrait is here at full length, in black, with a turnover and black coif, leaning on a ſlab. On the picture is this motto, Nec pudet vivere, nec piget mori. This gentleman was one of thoſe worthy perſons who ſet out with a view of reforming the abuſes of the arbitrary court of Charles I. but whoſe moderation and good ſenſe made them oppoſe their own party, when it attempted meaſures ſubverſive of the conſtitution: in conſequence, he, with ſeveral others, were excluded the houſe. In 1656, he was elected one of Cromwell's parlement; but not being approved by the ſlaviſh council of the uſurper, was laid aſide. He was active in promoting the Reſtoration; was choſen ſpeaker of the parlement; was rewarded with [Page 230] the maſterſhip of the Rolls, and died in great reputation, at the age of ninety, in 1683 *.

IN the ſame room is a head of Mr. Chiffinch; [Note: MR. CHIFFINCH.] a beautiful picture of Catharine, queen to Charles II. in the character of St. Catharine; and a fine half-length of St. Auguſtine.

IN the dining-parlour is a piece containing the portrait of Algernon earl of Northumberland, [Note: ALGERNON EARL OF NORTHUMBERLAND.] in black, ſtanding: his lady, in blue, ſitting, and a child by them. This generous peer ſtepped forward in the cauſe of liberty, in the beginning of the troubles of Charles I. while he held the poſt of lord high admiral: a poſt he was diſplaced from by the popular party, by reaſon of his moderation; which they ſuſpected would be a check to their unreaſonable views. He was conſtantly a mediating commiſſioner in all treaties on the ſide of the parlement; in which he behaved with dignity, ſpirit, and integrity. He was appointed governor of the king's children while they were ſeparated from him, and behaved to them with reſpect and affection. He joined with oppoſing the ordonnance for the trial of his maſter; and, after his death, retired to Petworth, and took no part with the uſurping powers. He joined heartily in the Reſtoration; but, like a true friend to his country, wiſhed for it on terms of ſecurity to the people, and advantage for the nation. He received from the reſtored king honors ſuited to his rank, and enjoyed them till his death, in 1668.

OVER the chimney-piece is a half-length of Sir Edward Grimſton, [Note: SIR EDW. GRIMSTON.] in black, a bonnet, and lawn ruff, by Holbein. Its date is 1548, aet. 20. On one ſide are theſe verſes:

[Page 231]
The life that nature ſends, death ſoon deſtroyeth,
And momentarie is that life's remembrance;
The ſeeminge life which peaceful art ſupplieth
Is but a ſhadow, though life's perfect ſemblans:
But that trewe life which virtue doth reſtore,
Is life indeed; and laſteth evermore.

THIS gentleman was comptroller at Calais, at the time it was taken by the duke de Guiſe in 1558. He had frequently wrote to the miniſtry, to inform them how ill provided it was againſt a ſiege. His remonſtrance was neglected; but when the place was loſt, the Engliſh government permitted him to remain priſoner, for fear of his complaints. The French demanded, as the price of his ranſom, a large eſtate he had purchaſed about Calais; but he preferred captivity rather than injure his family. He ſuffered a long and rigorous impriſonment in the Baſtile: at length eſcaped to England, and was honorably acquitted of any thing that could be laid to his charge *. He lived to the great age of ninety-eight. Another portrait ſhews his figure at that of eighty-one, with a ſkull in his hand, and white buſhy beard.

SIR Samuel Grimſton, in a long wig and laced cravat. [Note: SIR SAMUEL GRIMSTON.] He had rendered himſelf ſo obnoxious to James II. as to be excepted out of an act of grace, when that prince meditated a deſcent, 1692.

HIS two wives, lady Anne Tufton, and lady Elizabeth Finch, [Note: HIS TWO WIVES.] the laſt, daughter of lord chancellor the earl Nottingham; whoſe portrait is alſo here, [Note: EARL OF NOTTINGHAM.] dreſſed in black robes.

IN the great drawing-room is the portrait of lady How, [Note: LADY HOW.] with [Page 232] white long hair, daughter to Sir Harbottle Grimſton, and wife of Sir John How, of Wiltſhire.

SIR Herbottle Luckyn, [Note: SIR HARBOTTLE LUCKYN.] Baronet, in a blue coat, long white wig, and breaſt-plate; a caſtle at a diſtance. His granfather, by the marriage with Mary, eldeſt daughter of Sir Harbottle Grimſton, brought the eſtate into his family; which changed its name for that of his lady.

A HEAD of Thomas Howard, [Note: THOMAS EARL OF ARUNDEL.] the virtuoſo earl of Arundel; who, by much reſidence in foreign parts, acquired a thorough contempt for his own country. Filled with family-pride, he was ſent to the Tower for a contempt ſhewn in the houſe to a nobleman leſs highly born than himſelf: yet on the breaking out of the troubles of his royal maſter, Charles I. he ſhewed a great want of true ſpirit, conſulting his own ſafety and eaſe, rather than to riſque them by ſiding with either party. He quitted England, for which, as lord Clarendon ſays, he had little other affection than as he had a great ſhare in it, in which, like a great leviathan, he might ſport himſelf. He was a man of a noble preſence, and affected a plain garb. He accordingly is here dreſſed in a dark habit, robed with fur. His countenance correſponds to the deſcription: his hair ſhort, and his beard buſhy: his turnover plain; and the only ornament is the pendent order of the Garter.

IN the turret-room is the fine picture of the cook, by Sir Nathaniel Bacon.

THE great gallery is a magnificent room, [Note: GALLERY.] a hundred and thirty feet long, and nineteen wide; the roof wooden, richly gilt, and painted, and the ſides filled with full-length portraits of the great cotemporaries with its illuſtrious owner lord Verulam. They are [Page 233] indeed all copies; but copies taken during the lives of the perſonages repreſented.

His peaceful maſter James, is drawn in inconſiſtent armour, [Note: JAMES I.] black and gold, with each foot on a rock. Above him, ‘Jam tu [...] tenditque ſovetque.’ beneath, ‘ Jacobus unitor Britanniae, plantator Hiberniae, conditor imperii Atlantici.

The laſt, I fear, a piece of the characteriſtic adulation of the chancellor.

NEAR him are two monarchs, not in fact coeval with Bacon, but placed here from the admiration he had of their abilities, in extending their dominions to the Indies. By Emanuel king of Portugal, [Note: EMANUEL KING OF PORTUGAL.] he pointed out the advantage of commerce, received by the diſcovery of the new paſſage to India under his auſpices, by Vaſco di Gama: by Ferdinand V. he points out the diſcovery of America by Columbus. [Note: FERDINAND OF SPAIN.] The firſt monarch he calls Conditor imperii Europae ſuper Indias orientales; the other, Super Indias occidentales. Each of theſe princes are repreſented knee-deep in water: but I ſuppoſe, by the ſituation of his cautious maſter, he would ſhew he had too much prudence to wet his feet.

IT is to no purpoſe to preſerve the preſent order of portraits, in a houſe unhappily devoted to demolition. I ſhall therefore, at leſt in this part of it, give a chronological ſeries; out of which the noble owner may, if he pleaſes, give, in the ſucceeding edifice, an intereſting hiſtory of paſt times, in the lively repreſentation of the great actors of a great period.

[Page 234] Ludovic Stuart duke of Richmond and Lenox, [Note: LUDOVIC DUKE OF RICHMOND.] and earl of Newcaſtle, properly follows his prince and relation. He is dreſſed in his robes, a bonnet with a white feather: the George and a white rod are other appendages; the laſt, as lord high ſteward of the houſhold. He was alſo high chamberlain, and admiral of Scotland, and was ſent ambaſſador to France * before the acceſſion of his royal maſter to the Engliſh throne. He was a moſt deſerved favorite, and ſupported himſelf with ſuch true dignity, that, as Wilſon expreſſes it, ‘the king, as it were, wanting one of his limbs to ſupport the grandeur of majeſty at the firſt meeting of parlement, in 1623, ſent for him with great earneſtneſs,’ and received, by the return of the meſſenger, the melancholy news of his being found dead in bed, after going to reſt in the fulleſt health . His majeſty ſhewed the ſincereſt reſpect to his deceaſed ſervant, by proroguing the parlement for ſeveral days, unable ſooner to digeſt his loſs.

William earl of Pembroke, [Note: WILLIAM EARL OF PEMBROKE.] in black, with the white rod and key, as lord chamberlain; George pendent, flat ruff, ſhort hair, peaked beard: a great and amiable character, and the moſt univerſally eſteemed and beloved of any man of that age; and, having a great office in the court, he made the court itſelf better eſteemed, and more reverenced in the country; . He was beloved in court, becauſe he was diſintereſted; in the country, becauſe he was independent. In 1630, he died univerſally lamented: his many fine qualities cauſing his abandoned ſenſualities to be forgotten.

[Page 235] His brother, and ſucceſſor to the title, is painted here twice: in full-length, [Note: PHILIP EARL OF PEMBROKE AND MONTGOMERY.] in black, with a ſtar, George, and turnover, with black hair and peaked beard; and again in half-length, advancing. Philip was a complete contraſt to his brother: rude, reprobate, boiſterous, and devoted to his dogs and horſes: ſo mean as to receive tamely a horſe-whipping from one Ramſay, a Scotchman, at a public horſe-race; and for his civility in not reſenting the inſult, was rewarded by the peaceful James, by being made a knight, baron, viſcount, and earl on the ſame day. His mother, ‘ Sidney's ſiſter, Pembroke's mother,’ tore her hair when ſhe heard of her ſon's diſgrace. He was likewiſe lord chamberlain to Charles I. and, as Oſborn obſerves, in that office broke with his white rod many wiſer heads than his own; but his fear always ſecured him, by a quick and ample ſubmiſſion. Notwithſtanding the profundity of his ignorance, he became, on the king's impriſonment, chancellor of the univerſity of Oxford, a fit inſtrument for the eradication of loyalty. A noble ſtatue of him ſtands in the picture-gallery. On the uſurpation, he had the meanneſs to ſit in Cromwel's mock parlement as knight of the ſhire for Berkſhire; and concluded his deſpicable life on January the 23d, 1649-50.

A MAN in black and gold, a ruff, chain round his waiſt, and ſword. Date 1594.

A LADY with red hair, great lawn ruff, her dreſs black and gold. In materials reſembling the former. Three long chains of pearl.

[Page 236] Charles Howard earl of Nottingham, [Note: CHARLES EARL OF NOTTINGHAM.] lord high admiral, dreſt in his robes, with a view of a fleet and ſtorm; the conqueror of the Spaniſh armada.

SIR Edward Sackville, [Note: EDWARD EARL OF DORSET.] the accompliſhed, witty, and learned earl of Dorſet: a nobleman of quick paſſions and reſentments, violent in his friendſhips and enmities. In the great national quarrel between the Engliſh and Scots, at Croydon races, he alone left his countrymen and ſided with the latter, out of friendſhip to lord Bruce; for which, had not the affray been prevented, the Engliſh had fixed on Sir Edward as the firſt victim *: yet a diſpute with his beloved Scot produced the famous duel, which was purſued with unheard-of animoſity, and terminated in the death of Bruce . He behaved in the public quarrel of his royal maſter with equal ſpirit, and ſurvived till 1652.

EDWARD earl of Worceſter, [Note: EDWARD EARL OF WORCESTER.] maſter of the horſe to queen Elizabeth, and privy ſeal to James I. What recommended him to the firſt, was his being of royal blood, and at the ſame time the fineſt gentleman, and the beſt horſeman and tilter of his time . He is repreſented here at the period at which he had outlived the athletic exerciſes, with a bald head and white beard; in a white jacket and ruff, and George pendent.

THE firſt lord Cornwallis, [Note: THE FIRST LORD CORNWALLIS.] with long hair, in black, and a turnover: an active and valiant adherent to Charles I; brought up from his youth in his ſervice, and that of his brother Henry. So reſolute, that he knew not fear; ſo chearful, that ſorrow never [Page 237] came next his heart. Death would not try him by illneſs, but took him off ſuddenly, on January 31, 1661-2, after he had been raiſed to the peerage the preceding year.

THE gallant fickle earl of Holland, in a ſtriped and very rich dreſs: hat with red feather in his hand, the blue riband acroſs his breaſt.

A YOUNG warrior has ſomehow crept in among the veterans: Henry duke of Glouceſter, [Note: HENRY DUKE OF GLOUCESTER.] in buff coat, breaſt-plate, long black hair, the Garter, and a truncheon. A prince whoſe eminent virtues made his early end univerſally deplored. He died in 1660, in his twenty-firſt year, feelingly lamented by his brother Charles; who was never obſerved to ſhew a ſenſibility equal to what he did on this occaſion.

George Carew earl of Totneſs, [Note: GEORGE EARL OF TOTNESS.] in a white flowered jacket; hand on his ſword; white beard, and ſhort hair: a nobleman celebrated as a warrior, ſcholar, and author. He was ſon of a dean of Exeter; received his education at Oxford. His active ſpirit led him from his ſtudies into the army; but in 1589, he was created maſter of arts. The ſcene of his military exploits was Ireland, where, in the year 1599, he was preſident of Munſter. With a ſmall force he reduced great part of the province to her majeſty's government, took the titular earl of Deſmond priſoner, and brought numbers of the rebellious Septs to obedience *. The queen honored him with a letter of thanks under her own hand . He left his province in general peace in 1603, and arrived in England three days before the death of his royal miſtreſs. Her ſucceſſor [Page 238] rewarded his ſervice, by making him governor of Guernſey, creating him lord Carew, of Clopton, and appointing him maſter of the ordnance for life. Charles I. on his acceſſion, created him earl of Totneſs *. He died in March 1629, aged ſeventy-three, and was interred beneath a magnificent monument at Stratford upon Avon .

HE was not leſs diſtinguiſhed by his pen than his ſword. In his book Pacata Hibernia, he wrote his own commentaries; of which his modeſty prevented the publication during life. He collected four volumes of antiquities relating to Ireland, at this time preſerved unheeded in the Bodleian library: he collected materials for the life of Henry V , digeſted by Speed into his Chronicle. To conclude, he merited entirely the encomium given him by Wood, of being ‘a faithful ſubject, a valiant and prudent commander, an honeſt counſellor, a gentle ſcholar, a lover of antiquities, and great patron of learning .’

Figure 7. GEORGE CALVERT the Firſt Lord Baltimore

ARCHBISHOP Abbot, in a cap and epiſcopal habit, [Note: ARCHBISHOP ABBOT.] with a grey [Page 240] ſquare beard. This prelate owed his preferment under James I, to the Scottiſh favorite, the able and worthy earl of Dunbar: perhaps from the Calviniſtical principles with which he was ſtrongly imbued. Fuller ſays, ‘he honoured cloaks above caſſocks; lay, above clergymen *.’ He was upright and firm in his principles: probably too favorable to the tenets which, under him, acquired ſtrength, in the following reign, to ſubvert both church and ſtate, with the aſſiſtance of the contrary conduct of the indiſcreet and furious Land. How difficult is the virtue of moderation! Abbot gloriouſly reſiſted the licenſing of a ſlaviſh ſermon, preached by doctor Sibthorp, and fell into diſgrace; his office was ſuſpended: nor was it taken off, till the riſing ſtrength of the puritanical party made the compliance with the times prudent. His manners had in them an uncourtly ſtiffneſs and moroſeneſs . He found he was reſtored more through policy than affection. As he attained to the age of ſeventy-one, I can ſcarcely think that grief, either on account of his ſuſpenſion, or unconquerable ſorrow for the ſad accident of killing a gamekeeper with a croſs-bow, in ſhooting at a deer , brought him to his end. Nature might effect his diſſolution, without having recourſe to other cauſes.

THE beautiful George Villiers duke of Buckingham, [Note: GEO. VILLIERS DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM.] in white, with a hat and feather on a table. A minion of fortune, who owed his riſe to a handſome face and elegant perſon: merits irreſiſtible with James I. The king, by the inſolence and ingratitude of his favorite, received ſufficient puniſhment for his folly. [Page 241] Buckingham was poſſeſſed of abilities, clouded by the violence of his paſſions, and almoſt rendered uſeleſs. In his embaſſy to France, in 1625, he had the preſumption to make his addreſſes to the queen Anne of Auſtria *. On receiving the treatment which his vanity merited, he not only, in revenge, involved his country in war, but endeavoured to alienate the affection of his maſter Charles from his ſpouſe, her lovely ſiſter-in-law, Henrietta Maria. I ought to have mentioned the common report, that his ill ſucceſs with the wife of Olivarez, the Spaniſh miniſter, and a cruel deception in conſequence , was the primary cauſe of the breach of the Spaniſh match, and the hazard his young prince ran in eſcaping from an incenſed court. He fell at length by the hands of the melancholy Felton, who, taught by the murmurs of the people, thought he did an acceptable ſervice, by freeing his country from ſo diſtaſteful a miniſter.

SIR Richard Weſton earl of Portland, appears dreſt in black, [Note: SIR RICHARD WESTON EARL OF PORTLAND.] with a ruff blue riband, and white rod; his hair and beard grey. This nobleman is a proof how honors change manners. He ſet out with a great character for prudence, ſpirit, and abilities, and diſcharged his duty as ambaſſador, and, on his return, as chancellor of the exchequer, with much credit. Under the miniſtry of the duke of Buckingham, he was appointed lord treaſurer: on which he ſuddenly became ſo elated, that he loſt all diſpoſition to pleaſe; and, ſoon after the duke's death, became his ſucceſſor in the public hatred, without ſucceeding him in his credit at court . His luſt after power, and his rapacity to raiſe a great [Page 242] fortune, were unmeaſurable; yet the jealouſy of his temper fruſtrated the one, and the greatneſs of his expences the other. His imperious nature led him to give frequent offence; yet his timidity obliged him to make humiliating conceſſions to the very people he had offended. He had a ſtrange curioſity to learn what the perſons injured ſaid of him; the knowlege of which always brought on freſh troubles; as he would expoſtulate with them for their ſevere ſayings, as if he had never given cauſe for them; by which he would often diſcover the mean informant of his fruitleſs intelligence. He died in March 1634, in univerſal diſeſteem; and the family and fortune, for which he labored ſo greatly, were extinct early in the next reign.

Thomas Wentworth earl of Strafford, [Note: THOMAS EARL OF STRAFFORD.] in armour. Like Buckingham, a victim alſo to the popular fury; but brought to his end by all the ſolemnity of trial and pomp of ſtrained juſtice. His great abilities and moving eloquence, his fortitude and great deportment on the ſcaffold, make us loſe ſight of his failings, and lament that ſo much heroiſm ſhould be devoted to plans which made his life incompatible with the public ſecurity.

THE illuſtrious and faithful ſervant to Charles I. James duke of Richmond, [Note: JAMES DUKE OF RICHMOND.] in long, flowing, flaxen hair; his ſtar; and a dog by him.

Thomas Wriotheſley earl of Southampton, [Note: THOMAS EARL OF SOUTHAMPTON.] another nobleman, not leſs attached to his royal maſter; and who, like the former, offered himſelf a victim for his prince's life. The earls of Hertford and Lindſey joined in the generous petition to the commons, on the condemnation of the king; alleging, that they having been counſellors to his majeſty, and concurring in the advice of the ſeveral meaſures now imputed as crimes, they alone were guilty in [Page 243] the eye of the law, and ought to expiate the ſuppoſed offences of majeſty. He ſurvived to ſee the reſtoration of the royal family; was rewarded with the treaſurer's rod; and died a friend to his country as well as prince, on May 16th 1667. His death, and the fall of chancellor Hyde, removed from the abandoned court every check upon its profligate deſigns. It was ſo impatient to remove him, as to wiſh to wreſt the rod from his dying hands, had not Hyde earneſtly entreated the king to wait four or five days, till his death muſt happen. He died of the ſtone. So little credit had our ſurgeons at that time, that he ſent to Paris for one; but his end prevented the operation *.

THE chancellor himſelf is dreſſed in robes. In him is the character of an honeſt great man; [Note: CHANCELLOR HYDE.] the glorious victim to a prince and party, that neither could nor dared to attempt the ſlavery of their country, while he remained in power in it. He was exiled in 1667, by the contrivances of an ungrateful maſter, and lived abroad, venerated by the good, till this ornament to human nature gave way to death, on December the 9th, 1674.

George Monk duke of Albemarle, [Note: GENERAL MONK.] the well-known inſtrument of the Reſtoration. He is dreſt in a buff coat, with an anchor by him. He entered at a very early age into the military life, and firſt made trial of his ſword in the ill-conducted expedition to Cadiz, in 1625: but his military experience was attained by a ten years ſervice in the Low Countries. On the breaking out of the civil wars, his principles led him to embrace the royal party, after ſerving for ſome time againſt the rebels in Ireland. In his firſt [Page 244] campaign he was taken priſoner at Namptwich, and impriſoned for ſome years, with ſuch ſeverity, that he was at laſt induced, for the ſake of obtaining liberty, to engage with the parlement. Perhaps by ſtipulation, he never ſerved the remainder of the war in England. * Ireland was the ſcene of his exploits, and afterwards Scotland, which he entirely reduced. He was juſtly loaden with honors by his reſtored prince, under whom, by indulging his ſpirit of frugality, he amaſſed a vaſt fortune. His great military abilities fitted him equally for ſea or land. He commanded, jointly with prince Rupert, the fleet againſt the Dutch, in the dreadful engagement of 1666. His ſucceſs was equal to his valour. He became the darling of the ſailors, who called him by the familiar appellation of honeſt George; for he was a plain man, of few words, but inviolable in his promiſes. Worn out with fatigue, he died in 1670, and received a funeral pomp, which his eminent ſervices ſo well merited.

LORD keeper Coventry in his robes, [Note: LORD KEEPER COVENTRY.] and a ruff, with his hands on the ſeals: his look remarkably pleaſing; a mark of the internal comfort he felt in a life paſſed in the full integrity of the diſcharge of his profeſſion. He held the ſeals for fifteen years, and died in univerſal eſteem, January 14, 1639-40, at a period unhappy for his country; when the reſpect borne to his counſels might have prevented the dreadful feuds that ſo immediately followed his deceaſe.

FOUR portraits of the Stuart line: James I. Charles I. and II. [Page 245] and James II. The firſt is dreſſed in black, barred with gold. Typical of the Stuarts, the prerogative is before his eyes, in form of the crown and ſcepter. William III. who gave us the power of happineſs, makes a fifth portrait in this royal ſucceſſion.

Heneage Finch earl of Nottingham, in his robes, with the ſeals in his hands, [Note: CHANCELLOR NOTTINGHAM.] and long deep brown hair. This nobleman was lord chancellor in the reign of Charles II. and in thoſe dangerous times diſtinguiſhed himſelf for his integrity and prudence, in ſteering clear from a criminal compliance with the views of the court, or humouring the unbounded faction of the popular ſide. He brought the peerage into the family, which (rare to ſay) has never been fullied by thoſe who have derived the honor from him. He received the ſeals in 1673; died in 1682.

THIS concludes the liſt of portraits in the noble gallery of Gorhambury: ſcattered over the houſe are a few others which merit mention, as perſons eminent in their generation. Among them is one which ought properly to have led the van; the head of Sir Nicholas Bacon; his dreſs a furred robe. [Note: SIR NICHOLAS BACON.] He was a perſon of a very corpulent habit; for which reaſon queen Elizabeth uſed to ſay, "that her lord keeper's ſoul lodged well." To what I have given of him before, I ſhall only add, that he caught his death by ſleeping in his chair with a window open. He awoke diſordered, and, reproving his ſervant for his negligence, was told, that he feared to wake him. "Then," replies the keeper, "your complaiſance will coſt me my life." He died in 1579.

ANOTHER head of his ſecond wife, in a cloſe cap and white gown, [Note: HIS SECOND WIFE.] worked with oak-leaves and acorns. This diſtinguiſhed lady was Anne daughter of Sir Anthony Cook, of Giddy-hall, in Eſſex. She had great abilities, natural and acquired, and was [Page 246] eminently ſkilled in Greek, Latin, and Italian. She had the honor of being appointed governeſs to Edward VI *. To her inſtructions was probably owing the ſurprizing knowlege of the excellent young prince. She ſhared his education with her father, doctor Cox, and Sir John Cheek . Her ſons Anthony and Francis were not a little indebted, for the reputation they acquired, to the pains taken with them by this excellent woman in their tender years . When they grew up, they found in her a ſevere but admirable monitor. She tranſlated from the Italian the ſermons of Barnardine Ochine; and from the Latin, Jewel's Apology for the Church of England: both which met with the higheſt applauſe. She died in the beginning of the reign of James I. and was buried in the neighboring church of Saint Michael .

Figure 8. MARGARET COUNTESS OF CUMBERLAND.

THE dreſs of the portrait is very elegant. Her hair is turned up before, and backed with chains of pearl. Over her head is a black feather: a beautiful ruff and pearl necklace ſurround her neck. Her gown is black, hung with chains, and ſet with ornaments of pearl.

A HALF-LENGTH of Sir George Croke, [Note: SIR GEORGE CROKE.] one of the judges of the King's Bench in the time of Charles I. in his robes; diſtinguiſhed for his knowlege of the laws. He was one of the judges who had the honor of deciding againſt the illegality of ſhip-money; yet ſtill, on account of his eminent qualities, preſerved the favor of the court. When ſunk in years, and petitioning for a retreat, the king granted his requeſt, and rewarded his ſervices with the ſees and honor of chief juſtice during life*. Mundum vicit et deſeruit, ſays his epitaph, aet. 82. Anno R. C. 1. 17. Anno Domini 1641.

HIS lady is in black, with a lawn ruff: her portrait is dated 1626. [Note: HIS LADY.] Lady Croke ſhould by no means be paſſed unnoticed; eſpecially as Whitelock gives her the chief merit in her huſband's deciſion in the caſe of ſhip-money. He had, it ſeems, reſolved on the contrary ſide; but appearing wavering, was told by his wife, ‘that ſhe hoped he would do nothing againſt his conſcience, for fear of any danger or prejudice to him or his family; and that ſhe would be contented to ſuffer want, or any miſery, with him, rather than be an occaſion for him to do or ſay any thing againſt his judgment or conſcience.’

[Page 248] I SHALL conclude with a very ſingular portrait on wood, [Note: PHILIP LE BON DUKE OF BURGUNDY.] called Sylveſter de Grimſton, a noble Norman, ſtandard-bearer to the Conqueror at the battle of Haſtings, and afterwards his chamberlain. He held lands in Yorkſhire of the lord Roos; among others, that of Grimſton in Holderneſs; from whence he took the name. The picture is antient and curious, but wants four centuries of the great period in which Sylveſter lived; neither did that age afford any artiſts that could give even a tolerable repreſentation of the human figure, much leſs convey down a likeneſs of the fierce heroes of their times. I premiſe this, to ſhew the impoſſibility of this portrait having been a copy of ſome original of this great anceſtor. The dreſs is ſingular: a large bonnet, with a very long ſilken appendage; a green jacket, hanging ſleeves: a collar of SS held in one hand: his face beardleſs. On the back of the picture is Petrus xoi. me fecit, anno 1416. The artiſt is unknown to me: but the habit of the perſon is that of the date; for I find in Monfaucon's Monarchie Francoiſe ſeveral perſons of rank in the dreſs, particularly Philip Le Bon duke of Burgundy: between whom and this portrait, there is ſo ſtrong a reſemblance of feature*, that I do not heſitate to imagine that the Gorhambury portrait is no other than one of this illuſtrious prince. He was born in 1396; died in 1467: ſo that he was a youth when the picture was taken.

I NOW reſume my journey, and, in my way to St. Albans, about a mile and a half diſtant, paſs by the ſite of St. Mary de la Pre, de Pratis, or the Meadows; an hoſpital for leprous women, founded [Page 249] about 1190, by Warine, abbot of St. Alban's. It afterwards roſe to a priory of Benedictine nuns; but fell in 1528, when Wolſey, commendatory abbot, obtained from Clement VIII. a bull for its ſuppreſſion, and for annexing it to the abbey; after which he got a grant of it for himſelf from the king; who, on the ruin of the cardinal, gave it to Sir Ralph Rowlet *.

IMMEDIATELY after quitting this place, [Note: VERULAMIUM.] I entered the celebrated Verulamium, at a ſpot diſtinguiſhed by a great fragment of the antient wall, known by the name of Gorhambury-block, which probably bounded one ſide of one of the portae, or entrances, being exactly oppoſite to that on the eaſtern part. The precinct departs from the rectangular form of the Romans, this being among thoſe which were laid out, Prout loci qualitas aut neceſſitas poſtulaverit . It inclines to an oval ſhape; is placed on a ſlope, and the lower ſide bounded by the river Ver, which in former times might have ſpread into a lake, and given greater ſecurity to the town. According to Humphry Lloyd , it gave alſo the name to the place, Gwerllan, or the temple on the Ver; rightly beſtowing on the Britons a pre-occupancy of it to the Romans. I ſhall not diſpute the notions of the particular ford over which Ceſar croſſed the Thames, when he penetrated into our iſland. It probably was at or near Coway Stakes. Ceſar leaves us no room to depart from that opinion, as he expreſsly tells us that he led his army to the river Thames, towards the borders of the territories of Caſſivelaunus, *, [Page 250] the golden-locked leader of the country of the Caſſi: and theſe Caſſi are reaſonably ſuppoſed to have been a clan of the Cattieuchlani, and to have inhabited the hundred of this county now called Caſhio, in which Verulamium ſtood. But I muſt contend, that the diſtance of that city is far too remote from the fordable parts of the Thames, to admit it to have been the town of the Britiſh leader deſtroyed by the invader. It lies, in the neareſt line, thirty-ſeven miles from thoſe parts of the river: a diſtance too great for the time given to Ceſar for his ſecond campaign in Britain. The town, or rather poſt, which was forced by him, was not remote from the camp occupied by him on the ſide of the river; and moſt likely was that which is ſtill very entire, in the park of her Grace the dutcheſs dowager of Portland, at Bulſtrode, about fifteen miles diſtance from the Roman camp; whoſe veſtiges are ſtill to be ſeen, not far from the famous ford. Partly by length of time, partly by conſtant cultivation, this poſt has loſt ſome of the characters aſcribed by Ceſar to the town of Caſſivelaunus; for it wants at preſent the marſhy defence it had in his days.

THE town alluded to was within the territories of the Britiſh chieftain, and one of the ſtrong holds into which the Britons were uſed to drive their cattle in time of danger. This, by Ceſar's account, was certainly not the moſt capital; for his firſt relation informs [Page 251] us, it only contained ſaits numerus pecorum, a pretty conſiderable number of cattle. Notwithſtanding his vanity, a few lines lower, ſwells his booty into magnus numerus, a vaſt number*. Near Shepperton, alſo, near that place, in a field called War Cloſe, are found ſpurs, ſwords, bones, and other marks of a battle. See Cambden, i. 366: but in all likelihood, the firſt is the neareſt to the truth.

[...]erulamium was the capital of this country, and the reſidence of its princes. I do not reckon Caſſivelaunus among them; he was a chieftain of the Caſſi, and, for his great abilities, elected general on the Roman invaſion, if our Britiſh hiſtory is to be truſted. He was a guardian to his nephews, Anarwy and Tenafan (the laſt) father to Cunoboline, whoſe coins are ſo frequent. Here was one of the Britiſh mints; for we find the word Ver on the coins, but no prince's name to diſtinguiſh the reign.

After the Romans had effected their conqueſt, they added walls to the ordinary Britiſh defence of ramparts, and ditches. Many great fragments of the former ſtill remain, proofs of the ſtrength and manner of the Roman maſonry. On the one ſide is a vaſt foſs; on another, two. The walls are twelve feet thick, where entire, [Note: WALLS.] formed of flints bedded in mortar, now grown into amazing hardneſs. By intervals of about three feet diſtance, are three, and in ſome places four, rows of broad and thin bricks, or tiles, which were continued the whole length of the walls, which ſeem deſigned as foundations to ſuſtain the layers of flints and lime, while the laſt was in a moiſt ſtate. There were, beſides, round [Page 252] holes, which penetrated quite through*; but theſe are either filled up, or eſcaped my notice. According to Doctor Stukely's meaſurement, the area is five thouſand two hundred feet in length, and the greateſt breadth about three thouſand. It is at preſent incloſed into fields; but under the hedges, in many places, are veſtiges of buildings, and, as I am told, when it is under tillage, the ſites of the ſtreets appear, by the different color of the corn above them. The Watling-ſtreet comes to the Porta Decumana, the gate on the weſtern ſide, and paſſes quite through the city. There is another road goes on the outſide of the ſouth ſide; a ſmall military way, like that which paſſed from turret to turret on Severus's wall, for the conveniency of external paſſengers.

THIS place, by its attachment to the conquerors, acquired the privileges of a free borough, [Note: A MUNICIPIUM] a municipium, or municipal city, whoſe inhabitants enjoyed all the rights of the Roman citizens; for which reaſon ſuch towns derive their name a muneribus capiendis, their power to bear public offices. They had their ſenators, knights, and commons; magiſtrates and prieſts; cenſors, ediles, queſtors, and flamens.

THE attachment of this town to its new maſters, proved the cauſe of a heavy misfortune, which befel it under the reign of Nero. Boadicea, [Note: SACKED BY BOADICEA.] widow of Praſutagus, king of the Iceni, enraged at the cruel indignity offered to her and her daughters, raiſed an inſurrection againſt the Romans and their friends, and repaid with [Page 253] the moſt dreadful cruelties the injuries they had received. Camolodunum, Londinium, and Verolamium, ſuffered from the fury of the Britons; and ſeventy thouſand citizens and allies fell by the edge of the ſword. This city was remarkable for its wealth*; which was another incentive for the Britons to attack it, added to a particular animoſity againſt a people who had forſaken the cuſtoms and religion of their anceſtors.

THE place in a ſhort time emerged from its misfortune; and had the honor of producing Albanus, [Note: OF ST. ALBANUS.] the proto-martyr of Britain, a wealthy citizen of Verulamium, and, by privilege, of Rome alſo. He had been a Pagan, but was converted by means of a gueſt, whom he had ſheltered during the great perſecution of Diocleſian, as I have before related. St. Alban ſuffered in the year 302. Let not legend deſtroy the credibility of the martyrdom, by aſſigning attendant miracles, long after their ceſſation. We are told, that after he had refuſed to ſacrifice to the heathen gods, the uſual teſt of the alleged crime of Chriſtianity, he was, as cuſtomary, whipped with rods, and then led to execution, and beheaded on Holmhurſt, where the town of St. Alban's at preſent ſtands. In his paſſage, the torrent, which then divided the place from Verulamium, like the Red-ſea, divided its waters, and gave dry paſſage to the Saint and his followers: a fountain ſprung up where the martyr kneeled: one of the executioners relenting, was converted, and ſuffered with Albanus; another, who performed the deed, loſt his eyes, as a penalty for his cruelty; for they dropped out of his head in the moment in which he gave the blow [Page 254] St. Alban was interred on the ſpot; and his remains were miraculouſly diſcovered ſeveral centuries after their interment.

IN 429, [Note: SYNOD HOLD HERE.] this place was honored with a ſynod, in which St. Germanus and Lupus, two French prelates, aſſiſted. A chapel was erected, about the year 945, by abbot Ulſin, in honor of the former, on the ſpot in which he preached; whoſe ruins were to be ſeen the beginning of this century.

AFTER the Saxon invaſion, the name of the town was changed for that of Verlamceſter and Watlinceſter. The Britiſh hero, Uther Pendragon, after a long ſiege, wreſted it out of the hands of the Saxons, and held it during his life; after which they ſoon recovered it; but by reaſon of the cruel wars that raged during the conteſt between them and the Britons, the place became totally deſolated.

LIKE the antient Deva *, Verulamium had its great vaults, [Note: GREAT VAULTS.] or ſubterraneous retreats, ſtrongly and artfully arched. Theſe are ſuppoſed, by Sir Henry Chauncy, to have been deſigned as places of retreat in time of war for the women and children, and for the concealing of the moſt valuable effects. In 960, they were found to give ſhelter to thieves and proſtitutes; which cauſed Eldred, the eighth abbot, to ſearch after theſe ſouſterrains, and found ſeveral ways and paſſages; all which he cauſed to be deſtroyed, but preſerved the tiles and ſtones for the rebuilding the church, then in ruins.

THE preſent St. Alban's aroſe from the ruins of Verulamium. Offa king of the Mercians, directed, ſays legend, by a viſion from [Page 255] heaven, diſcovered the reliques of St. Alban, by beams of glory ſpringing from the grave*. In 793, he erected on the ſpot the magnificent monaſtery, for the maintenance of a hundred Benedictine or black monks, and in a parlementary council, which he held in the ſame year, beſtowed on it moſt liberal endowments. Verulamium was now reduced to the ſtate elegantly deſcribed by Spencer, aſſuming the character of the Genius of the place.

I was that city which the garland wore
Of Britain's pride, delivered unto me
By Roman victors, which it wore of yore,
Though nought at all but ruins now I be,
And lie in mine own aſhes, as ye ſee.
Verlame I was: what boots it that I was,
Sith now I am but weeds and waſteful graſs?

Ruines of Time.

BEFORE I quit theſe antient precincts, I muſt note the church of St. Michael, [Note: CHURCH OF ST. MICHAEL.] built within them, by the ſame pious abbot who founded the chapel of St. German. It became an impropriation of the abbey, and, after the diſſolution, a vicarage. The church is ſmall, ſupported within by round arches. It is moſt diſtinguiſhed by the monument of the great lord Verulam. His figure is of white marble, placed ſitting in a chair, reclining, in the eaſy attitude of meditation. He is dreſſed in robes lined with fur, and a high-crowned hat. Any emblems of greatneſs would have been unneceſſary attendants on this illuſtrious character. The ſpectator's ideas muſt render every complimental [Page 256] ſculpture ſuperfluous. The epitaph conveys high honor to the grateful ſervant: his maſter could receive nothing additional.

H. P.

Franciſc. Bacon, Baro de Verulam, Sanct. Albani viceco'

Sen notioribus titulis

Scientiarum lumen facundiae lex,

Sic ſededat:

Qui poſtquam, omnia naturalis ſapientiae

Et civilis arcana evolviſſet,

Naturae decretum explevit.

Compoſita ſolvantur.

Anno Dom. MDCXXVI.

AEt. LXVI.

Tanti viri Mem.

Thomas Meautys Superſtitis cultor.

Defuncti admirator.

ON leaving St. Michael's, I paſſed through a ſort of ſuburbs to St. Alban's, [Note: ST. ALBAN'S.] and croſſing the Ver, to the ſite of the palace of Kingſbury. It had long been the reſidence of the Saxon princes, who, by their frequent viſits to the abbey of St. Alban's, became an inſupportable burden to its revenues. At length abbot Alfric, by his intereſt with king Ethelred II. prevaled on him to diſpoſe of it, the king only reſerving a ſmall fortreſs in the neighborhood of the monaſtery*. This alſo continuing to give offence to its pious neighbors, was deſtroyed by king Stephen, at the interceſſion of Robert, the ſeventh abbot.

[Page 257] I SEE in Doctor Stukeley's plan, a bury, or mount, called Oſterhill, on which the palace might have ſtood; and a ditch, called Tonman Ditch, which took its name from this Tommin, or Tumulus.

ON aſcending into St. Alban's, up Fiſhpool-ſtreet, [Note: FISHPOOL.] the bottom on the right reminded me of the great pool which once occupied that tract. This had been the property of the Saxon monarchs, and was alienated by Edgar to the all-graſping monks. Thoſe princes were ſuppoſed to have taken great pleaſure in navigating on this piece of water. Anchors have been found on the ſpot; which occaſioned poets to fable that the Thames once ran this way. One of them, ſpeaking to the Ver, ſays,

Thou ſaw'ſt great burden'd ſhips through theſe thy vallies paſs,
Where now the ſharp-edg'd ſcythe ſhears up the ſpiring graſs;
And where the ſeal and porpoiſe us'd to play,
The graſshopper and ant now lord it all the day*.

THE town ſpreads along the ſlopes and top of the hill. The magnificent mitred parlementary abbey graced the verge of the ſouthern ſide. Of this there does not remain the leſt veſtige, [Note: ABBEY.] except the gateway, a large ſquare building, with a fine ſpacious pointed arch beneath: ſo that all the labors of Offa, and the ſplendid piety of a long train of abbots, and a numerous liſt of benefactors, are now reduced to the conventual church; and the once-thronged entrance of the devout pilgrims, to the ſhrine of our great proto-martyr, is now no more than an empty gateway.

[Page 258] A BARBAROUS murder was the true ſpring of Offa's munificence. [Note: A MURDER.] The Mercian monarch caſt a longing eye on the dominions of Ethelbert, prince of the Eaſt Angles; treacherouſly invited him to court, under pretence of marrying him to his daughter Althrida; ſeized on the young prince (who is repreſented to have been the moſt amiable of his time) beheaded him, [Note: CAUSE OF THE FOUNDATION OF THE ABBEY.] and ſeized on his dominions *. Offa had recourſe to the uſual expiation of his crime, that of founding a monaſtery; when the grateful monks, to conceal the infamy of their benefactor, call down a viſion from heaven, as a motive to his piety. But Offa did not truſt to this ſolely: he made a penitential pilgrimage to Rome, and, by the merit of his monaſtic inſtitution at St. Alban's, readily obtained abſolution, [Note: ITS GREAT PRIVILEGE.] and not only procured for the houſe exemption from the tax of Peter-pence, but power to collect the ſame for its own uſe, through the whole province of Hertford: a privilege which no perſon in the realm, the king himſelf not excepted, ever enjoyed. By the ſame bull, his holineſs granted, that the abbot, or monk, whom he appointed archdeacon, ſhould have pontifical juriſdiction over the prieſts and laymen of the poſſeſſions of this church; and that no perſon whatſoever, ſave the Pope himſelf, ſhould offer to interfere. It was, by the charter of the king, to be free from all taxes, repair of bridges and caſtles, and free from making entrenchments againſt an enemy; to be exempt from epiſcopal juriſdiction; and that the fines for crimes, which belonged to the king, ſhould be given for ever to this monaſtery. Offa, not content with this, incloſed the body of the Saint in a ſhrine of beaten gold and ſilver, [Page 259] ſet with precious ſtones; and, encircling the ſcull with a golden diadem, cauſed to be inſcribed on it, Hoc eſt caput SANCTI ALBANI, Anglorum protomartyris *.

Wiligord was the firſt abbot. It flouriſhed from his time to the diſſolution, [Note: FIRST AND LAST ABBOT.] and received vaſt endowments and rich gifts. At that fatal period it was ſurrendered, on the 5th of December 1538, by Richard Boreman, alias Stevenache, the laſt abbot; who got, in reward for his ready compliance, the annual penſion of £266. 13s. 4d; and the thirty-nine monks, then of the houſe, leſſer ſums; ſome even as ſmall as five pounds a year. The houſe, and the greateſt part of the lands, were granted to Richard Lee, captain of the band of penſioners, as ſcandal reports, in reward for his prudence in winking at the king's affection for his handſome wife. The town, or, as Willis ſays, the abbot, purchaſed the church from the king for £400, and by that means preſerved it from deſtruction; which gave him ſo much merit with queen Mary, that when ſhe determined to reſtore the abbey, ſhe appointed him to preſide over it. It is ſaid that he died of a broken heart, within a few days after he received the news of her death.

THE revenues at the diſſolution were valued by Dugdale at £2102. 7s. 1d. per annum; [Note: REVENUES.] by Speed, at £2510. 6s. 1d. § Notwithſtanding the purchaſe made by Boreman, [Note: GRANTED TO THE TOWN.] Edward VI. granted the monaſtery to the corporation of St. Alban's, which he had lately inſtituted, and ordered that the church ſhould [Page 260] be reputed the pariſh church of the place, and be ſerved by a rector, to be nominated by the mayor and burgeſſes of the town.

THE abbots lived in ſplendor, ſuitable to their rank and revenues. They dined in the great hall, at a table to which there was a flight of fifteen ſteps. The monks ſerved up the dinner in plate, and in their way made a halt at every fifth ſtep, where there was a landing, and ſung on each a ſhort hymn. The abbot uſually ſat alone in the middle of the table; and when any perſons of rank came, he ſat towards the end of the table. After the monks had waited ſome time on the abbot, they ſat down at two other tables, placed on the ſides of the hall, and had their ſervices brought in by the novices; who, when the monks had dined, ſat down to their own dinners*.

THE church, [Note: CHURCH.] in its preſent ſtate, is a moſt venerable and great pile: its form that of a croſs, with a tower. At the interſection the length is ſix hundred feet; that of the tranſepts one hundred and eighty. The height of the tower one hundred and forty-four feet; that of the body ſixty-five; of the ailes thirty; the breadth of the body two hundred and ſeventeen.

BY neglect, [Note: RUINED.] or by the ravages of war, the original church fell to decay. Abbot Ealdred, who lived in 969, deſigned to pull down and rebuild it; and for that purpoſe collected, from the ruins of Verulamium, all the ſtone, tiles, and timber, he could find. Death put a ſtop to his intention. His ſucceſſor, Eadmer, reſumed the taſk of getting together the materials; and in his [Page 261] ſearch, found great quantities of curious antiquities; ſuch as altars, urns, &c. which the pious man broke to pieces, as heathen abominations. He alſo, as is ſaid, diſcovered ſeveral books, ſome in Britiſh, others in Latin; and a great one in a language and character unknown to any but an old prieſt. This was found to be the authentic life of St. Alban; which was carefully treaſured up, being a confirmation of what Bede had wrote on the ſame ſubject. The other books, being only accounts of heathen mythology, inventions of the devil, were inſtantly condemned to the flames*.

A FAMINE ſtopped the deſign of the new church, under the abbot Leofric. The troubles that enſued, under the remaining Saxon monarchs, and the unſettled ſtate of the kingdom at the Conqueſt, occaſioned the plan to lie dormant till the year 1077, when it was executed by abbot Paul, a Norman monk. He applied to that purpoſe the timber, [Note: AND REBUILT.] the ſtones, and tiles, collected by his predeceſſors: accordingly we ſee the far greater and more antient part of the walls a motley compoſition of ſtones and Roman tiles.

MANY other parts afterwards were pulled down, [Note: ALTERATIONS.] and rebuilt in the ſtile of the times; and I ſuſpect that, in general, the preſent windows are long poſterior to thoſe coeval with the walls; being painted, and of a taſte of another age. The windows in the great tower, and perhaps the range along the nave, are of time intervening; for they differ from the mode of each of the [Page 262] others. I find this confirmed in the lives of the abbots. John (firſt of the name) who died in 1214, pulled down the frontwall, which was built of old tiles, ſo ſtrongly cemented with mortar, that it proved a work of great labor. Maſter Hugh Goldcliff, a moſt excellent workman, was employed; who, conſulting more the ornaments of ſculpture, of images and flowers, neglected the ſecurity of his building; ſo that it fell down, and was left unfiniſhed during the life of this good abbot*. His ſucceſſor, William of Trampington, had the honor of completing his deſign. He not only rebuilt that front, but made new windows, and put glaſs into them, ſo as to give more light to the church. He alſo raiſed the ſteeple much higher, covered it with lead, and died full of good works, in 1235 .

IN the abbacy of John of Whethamſtead, this church received the moſt conſiderable alterations. To avoid prolixity, I omit the numerous works of that moſt munificent abbot: I ſhall only note the change he made in the exterior part, by enlarging and glazing the windows on the north ſide of the church, which was before dark, and by cauſing a large window to be made at the weſt end of the north a [...]e, which was as deſtitute of light as the other part. John died in 1464; before which time the narrow windows had been changed for thoſe more expanded, lightſome, and leſs painted.

Figure 9. VIEW into the SOUTH TRANSEPT of ST. ALBAN'S CHURCH.
Figure 10. View of part of the BODY & AILES of ST ALBANS CHURCH.

ABO [...] the antient arches are galleries, with evenings round; [...] probably coeval with the former.

THE upper part of the choir is entirely of gothic architecture, [Note: CHOIR.] [...] from the body by a ſtone ſkreen, ornamented with [...]le-work. Before this ſtood the chapel of Saint [...] a work owing ſo the piety of abbot Richard, who [...] to be preſent at the tranſlation of the incorruptible [...] that Saint to the church of Durban, apprehending, from [...]eſs then, it was going to fall to pieces, [...]ght it in his [...] and in reward, one of them, which was withered, was in [...] [...] *.

[...] altar fills the end of the choir a moſt rich and ele [...] [...] of gothic ſculpture, [Note: HIGH ALTAR.] once adorned with images of gold [...] placed in beautiful ni [...]hes: the middle part is not of [...] the reſt, being modern and c [...]umſy. This altar was [Page 264] made by abbot Wallingford, either in the reign of Edward IV. or Richard III. at the expence of eleven hundred marks.

THE hind part of it, which ſtands in the chapel of St. Alb [...] is of gothic work, [Note: [...] ] inferior indeed to the other ſide, but ſtill of much elegance. The [...] of both are nearly ſimilar; conſi [...] of [...] work battlement: at the bottom is a large arched [...], [Note: [...] ] in which ſtood the ſuperb ſhrine which contained the re [...] of St. Alban, made of beaten gold and ſilver, and enriched [...] and ſculpture. The gems were taken from the treaſure one accepted, [...]hich being of ſingular uſe to parturient women wa left [...]. This was no other than the famous Ae [...]es, [...]gle, [...] ſuperſtitious repute from the day of Pl [...]ny to that of [...], re-founder of the ſhrine; which had been taken down and [...] during the reign of Edward the Co [...] [...]eſſor, to preſerve them from the ravages of the Danes . To guard the invaluable treaſures, a careful and truſty monk was ap [...]eed who was called Cuſtos Foretri, and who kept watch [...] gallery, ſtill ſtanding, near the ſite of [...] .

Figure 11. ABBOT RAMRIDGE'S TOMB.

ON the ſouth ſide of the chapel of St. Alban is the magnificent tomb* of Humphry duke of Gloceſter, [Note: TOMB OF HUMPHRY DUKE OF GLOCESTER.] diſtinguiſhed by the name of The Good. He was uncle to Henry VI. and regent of the kingdom, under his weak nephew, during twenty-five years. His many eminent qualities gained him the love of the people; his popularity, the hatred of the queen and her favorites. His life was found to be incompatible to their views. They firſt effected the ruin of his dutcheſs by a ridiculous charge of witchcraft, and after that, brought as groundleſs a charge of treaſon againſt himſelf. He was conveyed to St. Edmund's Bury, where a parlement was convened in 1446; before which the accuſation was to be made. His enemies, fearing the public execution of ſo great and ſo beloved a character, cauſed him to be ſtifled in his bed, and then pretended that he died of vexation at his ſudden fall. His body was interred in this church, the ſcene of his detection of the pretended miracle of the blind reſtored to ſight at the virtuous ſhrine of St. Alban. Shakeſpear gives us the relation admirably. Gloceſter had a predilection for this place: he had beſtowed on it rich veſtments, to the value of three thouſand marks, and the manor of Pembroke, that the monks ſhould pray for his ſoul: and he alſo directed that his body ſhould be depoſited within theſe holy walls. The ſees attendant on his funeral, were not of the moſt [Page 266] moderate kind; unleſs we may ſuppoſe, as probably was the caſe, that the houſe was at the charge of erecting the monument to ſo great a benefactor. Sir Henry Chauncy expreſsly ſays*, that abbot Whethamſted adorned duke Humphry's tomb; which ſhews, that part at left of the expences were borne by the convent. The account is curious.

‘CHARGES of the burial of Humphry duke of Glouceſter, [Note: FUNERAL EXPENCES.] and obſervances appointed by him, to be perpetually born by the convent of the monaſterie of St. Alban .’

  £ s. d.
Firſt. The abbat and convent of the ſaid monaſtarie have payd for markynge the tumbe & place of ſepulture of the ſaid duke, within the ſeid monaſterie, above the ſume of — CCCCXXXIII. 2. VIII.
Item. To two monks preſts, dayly ſeiying meſſe at the auter of ſepulture of the ſeid prince, everich takyng by 1 day VId ſma. thereoff, by 1 hole yere — XVIII. V s.  
Item. To the abbat ther yerely, the day of the anniverſary of the ſeid prince, attending his exquys ther — XL. s.    
Item. To the priour yerly ther, the ſame day, in likwyſe atteinding — XX s.    
Item. To XL monks preſts, yerly, to [Page 267] everich of them, in the ſame day, VIs. VIIId. ſm. theroff — XII. VI. VIII.
Item. To VIII monks not preſts, yerly, in the ſeid day, to everich of them 3s. 4d. ſm. thereoff — XXVI s. VIII d.  
Item. To II ankereſſes, I at St. Peter church, another at St. Mich. the ſeid day, yerly, to everich ſm. — III s. 4d.  
Item. In money, to be diſtribut to pore peple ther, the ſeid day, yerly — XL. s.    
Item. To XIII pore men beryng torches, the ſeid day, about the ſeid ſepulture — II s. II d.  
Item. For wex brennyng dayly at the meſſes, and his anniverſary of torch, yerly — VI. XII. III.
Item. The kechin of the convent ther yerly, in relief of the great decay of the huſtode of the ſeid monaſteri in the marches of Scotland, which before tyme ſhall be appointed to the kichyn — X.    

THIS beautiful tomb was once inſulated, as appears by one of theſe items. In the middle is a pervious arch, adorned above with the coat of arms of the deceaſed; and others again along a freeze; with his ſupporters, two antelopes with collars. From the freeze ariſes a light elegant tabernacle-work, with niches; containing on one ſide the effigies of our princes; the other ſide is deſpoiled of the figures.

IN 1703, the vault in which repoſed the remains of this illuſtrious perſonage was diſcovered. The body was preſerved in a [Page 268] leaden coffin, in a ſtrong pickle; and over that was another caſe, of wood, now periſhed. Againſt the wall is painted a Crucifixion, with four chalices receiving the blood; a hand pointing towards it, with a label, inſcribed Lord have mercy upon me.

THE epitaph has long ſince been defaced; but was as follows:

Hic jacet Umphredus dux ille Gloceſtrius, olim
Henrici regis protector, fraudis ineptae
Detector; dum ficta notat miracula caeci*
Lumen erat patriae, columen venerabile regni:
Pacis amans muſiſque favens melioribus; unde
Gratum opus Oxonio quae nunc ſcola ſacra refulget,
Invida ſed mulier regno, regi, ſibi, nequam
Abſtulit hunc, humili vix hoc dignata ſepulchro.
Invidia rampente tamen poſt funera vivit.

ABBOT Whethamſted's, [Note: WHETHAMSTED'S CHAPEEL.] tomb (or Johannes de loco frumentario, as he ſtiled himſelf) is covered by a ſmall chapel, erected by himſelf. It is a plain building, on the ſouth ſide of the choir. His arms, alluſive to his name, are three ears of wheat; and the motto, alluſive to the flouriſhing ſtate of the monaſtery under his government, is Valles abundabunt, twice repeated. Weever, from p. 562 to 567, enumerates all his munificent works. He had a great turn towards ornamental generoſity; and cauſed this church, the Lady's chapel, and ſeveral parts of the houſe, to be adorned with hiſtorical paintings, and inſcriptions of his own compoſition to be placed under them. He alſo was a great [Page 269] compoſer of epitaphs. The reader will accept, as a ſpecimen of the firſt, a diſtich placed in our Lady's chapel:

Dulce pluit manna, partum dum protulit Anna,
Dulcius ancilla dam CHRISTUS crevit in illa*.

Of the other, a curious one upon one Peter, who was interred in the lower choir.

Petram petra tegit; qui poſt obitum ſibi legit
Hic in fine chori, ſe ſub tellure reponi.
Petra fuit Petrus, petrae quia condicionis
Subſtans et ſolidus, quaſi poſtis religionis
Hic ſibi ſub petra, ſit pax et pauſa quieta.

His artiſt was Alan Strayler, painter; [Note: STRAYLER, THE PAINTER.] who is ſaid to have been ſo well paid for his work, that he forgave the convent three ſhillings and four pence of an old debt, for colors; and on that account was probably complimented with the following epitaph:

Nomen pictoris Alanus Strayler habetur
Qui ſine fine choris celeſtibus aſſocietur.

I BELIEVE, ſome of his labors are yet extant in the roof of the choir; on which is painted, in compartments, an Eagle and a Lamb. Under others, in our Lady's chapel, was this line: ‘Inter oves Aries, ut ſine cornubus Agnus.’ [Page 270] under the other, ‘Inter aves aquila veluti fine felle columba.’

IN the middle of the cieling of the north aile, is a painting of the martyrdom of St. Alban, (as is ſaid) over the very ſpot on which he ſuffered. There is, beſides, a rude ſculpture of his death in a ſmall aile on the back of his chapel, expreſſing the manner how the executioner loſt his eyes for his impiety.

IN the center of another cieling, is a rude painting of king Offa; and this inſcription beneath:

Fundator eccleſiae circa annum 793
Quem malé depictum, et reſidentem cernitis altè
Sublimem ſolio Mercius Offa fuit.

[Note: BRASS MONUMENTS.] IN the choir are ſome fine braſſes of mitred abbots. That of Thomas de la More, a moſt munificent and pious man, [Note: ABBOT THOMAS.] who died in 1396, is very richly engraved. His figure lies in the center, ſurrounded by the twelve Apoſtles in miniature: a proof that this art was arrived at great perfection at ſo early a period.

I MUST not omit the modeſt epitaph of an antient abbot.

Hic quidem terra tegitur,
Peccato ſolvens debitum:
Cujus nomen non impoſitum
In libro vitae ſit inſcriptum.

ON a large braſs plate is engraven the figure of a warrior. [Note: HEIR OF EDMUND EARL OF KENT.] Fragments of the inſcription are given by Mr. Salmon; which inform us, that it was in memory of the ſon and heir to Edmonde erle of Kent. The date 1480. The hiſtorian ſays, that he was [Page 271] killed in the ſecond battle of St. Alban's. This muſt be a miſtake; for none of the name of that family fell on that day, except Sir John Grey of Groby. This muſt therefore have been a cenotaph in honor of Anthony Grey, eldeſt ſon of Edmund earl of Kent, buried at Luton, who died before his father*; the earl dying in 1489: which might bring the ſon's death to the date on the braſs.

AGAINST a wall, near Whethamſted's chapel, is painted, kneeling, in a cloak, Ralph Maynard, of this town, of the family of the anceſtor of lord Maynard.

A LONG inſcription againſt a column, on the north ſide of the body of the church, clames the honor of having the body of the celebrated Sir John Mandeville interred beneath. We admit that this place gave him birth; [Note: SIR JOHN MANDEVILLE.] but he found a grave at Liege, in the convent of the Gulielmites, in 1371. He was the greateſt traveller of his or any other age; having been out thirty-four years; and in the character of pilgrim, knight-errant, and man of obſervation, viſited the greateſt parts of Africa and Aſia then known. It is probable that he penetrated as far as China. He left an account of his travels, which were ſhamefully falſified by the monks; who deſtroyed much of their credit, by mingling with them legendary tales, and ſtories out of Pliny: but ſtill truth appears ſo frequently, that the authenticity of the groundwork is by no means impaired. He was called Johannes de Mandevile, [Page 272] aliter dictus ad Barbam, from his forked beard. He is engraven on his tomb with that addition, armed, and treading on a lion. At his head, the hand of one bleſſing him; and theſe words in the French of the time, Vos ki paſeis ſor mi pour l'amour Deix proies por mi. His knives, horſe-furniture, and ſpurs, were, in the time of Ortelius, * preſerved at Liege by the monks, and ſhewn to ſtrangers.

AN inſcription under the great weſt window denotes, that the courts of juſtice were adjourned from London to this town: once, in the reign of Henry VIII, and again in that of his daughter Elizabeth, on account of the peſtilence which at thoſe times raged in the capital.

THE magnificent brazen font, [Note: FONT.] brought from the plunder of Leith by Sir Richard Lee, in the reign of Henry VIII. was again ſtolen in the civil wars. The knight commemorates his benefaction in theſe bombaſtic terms: ‘Cum Laethia oppidum apud Sco [...]s non incelebre et Edinburgus primoria apud eos civitas incerdio conflagrarent, Ricardus Leius eques auratus me flammis ereptum ad Anglos perduxit. Hujus ego tanti beneficii memor non niſi reeum liberos lavare ſolitus, nunc meam operam etiam infimis Anglorum li [...]enter condixi. LEIUS VICTOR SIC VOLUIT. Vale. A. D. 1543.’

THE laſt inſcription I ſhall mention, is that in memory of two hermits, now almoſt defaced, inſcribed near a benetoire, by the door in the ſouth aile leading into the cloiſters.

[Page 273]
Vir domini verus jacet hic hermita Rogerus
Et ſub eo clarus mentis hermita Sigarus.

THE door adjacent is extremely beautiful; rich in ſculpture. The cloiſters lay on the other ſide. Nothing but the marks of their junction with the outſide of the church now remains; a ſeries of tripartite arches: nor is there the leſt relique of the vaſt and magnificent buildings, which once covered a large ſpace on this ſide.

ADJOINING to the eaſt end of the church is the chapel of St. Mary, [Note: CHAPEL OF SAINT MARY.] ſupported by light and elegant pillars. The roof is of ſtone; the ſides of the windows ornamented with a fine running foliage; and little images adorn the pillars of each widow. The ſtair-caſe from hence to the leads has a beautiful imitation of cordage cut in ſtone, following the ſpiral windings. All the arches are of the ſharp-pointed gothic.

I CANNOT trace the founder of this elegant building. It was prior to the days of John of Whethamſted; for he cauſed* ‘our Lady's chapel to be new trimmed, and curiouſly depicted with ſtories out of the Sacred Word; and cauſed ſome verſes (before quoted by me) to be curiouſly depenſed in gold.’

Edmund Beaufort duke of Somerſet, Henry Percy earl of Northumberland, John lord Clifford, and others of the nobility and gentry, to the amount of forty-ſeven, ſlain in the firſt battle of St. Alban's, were interred in this chapel.

SAINT Peter's, the third church in St. Alban's, [Note: ST. PETER'S] lies at the upper end of the town: it was founded by abbot Ulfin: was an impropriation [Page 274] of the abbey, now a vicarage in the patronage of the biſhop of Ely. This church received the overflowings of the bodies of the men of rank ſlain in the ſame battle. There is ſtill a perfect braſs of Sir John Entwyſle, in complete armor. He was born in Lancaſhire, and was viſcount and baron of Brikbeke in Normandy. He died on May 28th, 1455, of the wounds he received on fighting in the cauſe of Henry.

THE two Ralph Babthorps of Yorkſhire, father and ſon (the one ſewer, the other ſquire to that unfortunate prince) found their graves here; ſlain in the ſame cauſe.

ON a ſtone is this inſcription: Edithe le Vineter giſt: ici: Dieu: de: ſa: alme: eie: merci.

A LARGE marble monument, with a buſt, commemorates the reward of ingenuity and honeſt induſtry. ‘Beneath, lie the remains of Edward Strong, a ſhepherd's boy near this town, who took to maſonry, worked at St. Paul's cathedral, and laid the laſt ſtone. He acquired a good fortune, with a fair character, and died aged 72, in 1723.’

AT the bottom of the town is a ſmall brick houſe*, [Note: HOLYWELL HOUSE.] called Holywell; once the reſidence of Sarah dutcheſs of Marlborough. Her portrait, in white, exquiſitely handſome, is preſerved here; as is that of her aged mother, Mrs. Jennings. In the firſt, are not the leſt veſtiges of her diabolical paſſions, the torments of her queen, her huſband, and herſelf.

TWO little pictures in this houſe are ſo charmingly finiſhed, as to merit a viſit. One is of a beautiful woman, with red hair [Page 275] parted in the middle; a cloſe cap, placed far behind; with a long black coif, edged with pearl.

SHE is dreſſed in a ſcarlet gown, with ſleeves and mantle of purple: breaſts and ſhoulders naked. She appears a deep devotee, reading a rich illuminated miſſal, ſeated in a chair. Her middle is ſurrounded with a chain, a roſary of gold and colored beads pendent from it. On a table, behind, is a chalice of gold, ſet with pearls.

THE other is a head of an old man, in a black gown; his beard grey and ſquare, finely finiſhed.

THE town of St. Alban's is large, and, in general, [Note: TOWN.] filled with antient buildings. It originally ſprung from a few houſes built by king Offa, for the conveniency of the officers and ſervants of the monaſtery. About the year 950, it was ſo increaſed, that king Ethelred, at the interceſſion of abbot Ulfin, gave it a grant of a market, and the rank of a borough. In the Doomſday Book, it appears at the Conqueſt to have been rated for ten hides. The ‘arable was ſixteen ploughlands. In demeſne, three hides, two ploughlands, and another may be made. There were four aliens, ſixteen villeyns, and thirteen boors, having thirteen ploughlands: forty-ſix burgeſſes: the toll, and other rents of the town, eleven pounds fourteen ſhillings a year: three mills, forty ſhillings a year: meadow, two ploughlands in quantity: wood to feed a thouſand hogs in pannage-time: and ſeven ſhillings rent. The total twenty pounds at that time; in that of Edward the Confeſſor, twenty-four. There are now twelve cottagers, a park of deer, and a fiſh-pond.’

THE town was always conſidered as part of the demeſne of the abbey; and at the Conqueſt it was part of its poſſeſſions. [Page 276] Richard I. by charter, confirmed it to them, with a market, and all the liberty attending a borough: the abbot holding, as he alleged, of the king in capite, and holding the burgeſſes as demeſned men of the abbey. This tenure the burgeſſes wiſhed to force from him; which they attempted by the following ſtratagem: —In the thirty-fifth of Edward I. they had ſent repreſentatives to parlement, and alſo in the firſt and ſecond of Edward II; but in the fifth of the ſame reign, the ſheriff of Hertfordſhire, by the contrivance of the abbot, to ſave the expence, had omitted the uſual ſummons. This the burgeſſes complained of, aſſerting that they held of the king; hoping thereby to get releaſed of the ſervices they owed their lord abbot: or, if they ſucceeded in ſending members, to be freed of thoſe which they owed the king. Both of which expectations, in the opinion of Mr. Madox, were illfounded*. Burgeſſes were returned to parlement the fifth of Edward II. and in the ſecond, fourth, and fifth of Edward III; after which the load, or the privilege, as it was reſpectively thought by the diſputants, ceaſed. At the time of the diſſolution, the town, with the other poſſeſſions of the abbey, fell to the king (Henry VIII.) and from him to his heir, Edward VI; who, by letters patent, dated May 12th, 1553, [Note: INCORPARATED] made the town of St. Alban's a body corporate, by the name of the mayor and burgeſſes, and granted to the ſaid mayor and burgeſſes, and their ſucceſſors, the ſaid profits, and other franchiſes; they to hold the premiſes in free burgage, and to render yearly to the crown XL. as a fee-farm, at the feaſt of St. Michael .

[Page 277] THESE were changed, by Charles II. into a mayor, recorder, twelve aldermen, and twenty-four aſſiſtants. The members are returned by the inhabitants and freemen (about a thouſand in number) and the returning-officer is the mayor*.

THE remarkable events, which befel this town in earlier times, were, as uſual, of the ſanguinary kind. During the rage of the barons wars, in the reign of Henry III. the burgeſſes fortified the place, and defended it with ſtrong gates, well ſecured. They were particularly jealous of horſemen; therefore refuſed paſſage to all cavaliers. The conſtable of Hertford, diſpleaſed at this prohibition, in a bravado, boaſted that he would enter the town with three youths (knights) and four of his beſt villeins. He did ſo; and, walking up and down with great inſolence, aſked his companions which way the wind was. The townſmen, alarmed at the queſtion, thought he deſigned to fire their houſes. In a ſummary way they executed juſtice, by knocking down and beheading him, his youths, and villeins; placing their heads on poles, at the corners of their ſtreets. The king reſented this invaſion of his prerogative, and fined the town in a hundred marks; which was immediately paid.

IN the reign of Richard II. they underwent a mortification of a far heavier nature. In 1381, after the bloody inſurrection of Wat Tyler, a court of juſtice was held here, by the famous Sir Robert Treſilian. John Ball, a prieſt of Coventry, was tried and executed. Several of the inhabitants had favored the rebels, or, taking advantage of the turbulence of the [...]mes, had demanded [Page 278] from the abbot a releaſe from all their ſervices. Several of them were condemned and put to death, and orders given, that their bodies ſhould remain on the gallows in terrorem. The burgeſſes, in contempt of the king, took them down; but when a diſcovery was made, Richard, in a rage, commanded the townſmen to make chains, and hang the putrid carcaſes on the ſame places they took them from; which, diſguſting and horrible as the taſk was, they were obliged to perform*.

IN the civil wars between the houſes of York and Lancaſter, [Note: FIRST BATTLE AT ST. ALBAN'S.] this town was the ſcene of dreadful carnage. Here was ſhed the firſt blood in that fatal quarrel. As ſoon as ever the weak Henry, or rather his queen and miniſters, found themſelves free from the power of his rival the duke of York, they armed their forces, and marched from London to St. Alban's to meet their enemy, who was advancing towards them with a mighty hoſt. They met on the 22d of May, 1455. The peaceful prince ſent out a herald to York, ſtrictly commanding him to keep the peace as became a dutiful ſubject, and to avoid effuſion of blood. York's anſwer was humble, yet reſolute; demanding the duke of Somerſet, and other delinquents, to be delivered into his hands, that juſtice might be executed on them, for the miſeries they had brought on the realm. Somerſet, who had been regent of France, was charged in particular with the loſs of Normandy. The king determined to ſtand the event of the day, rather than give up his friends. His banner was placed in St. Peter's ſtreet. Orders were iſſued by Henry (but moſt probably by the bloody Margaret) that no quarter [Page 279] ſhould be given to his opponents. The Yorkiſts began the attack in three places. The famous John lord Clifford defended the barriers with his accuſtomed valour. The king-making Warwick, who at this time eſpouſed the cauſe of York, collected his force, and broke in through the gardens into Holywell-ſtreet *: his ſoldiers ſhouted his tremendous name. The duke of York entered at the ſame time, and a dreadful fight enſued. Victory declared in his favor. Numbers of the nobility and gentry, with about eight hundred common men, fell on the ſide of Henry: the valiant Clifford, uſually called The Old, though only forty years of age; the earl of Northumberland, ſon to the noted Hotſpur; and the great duke of Somerſet, were ſlain. The laſt loſt his life beneath the ſign of the Caſtle, to fulfil the prophecy thus delivered by Shakeſpeare:

Let him ſhun caſtles.
Safer ſhall he be on the ſandy plains,
Than where caſtles mounted ſtand.

Numbers of the nobility were wounded, and numbers fled till the fury of the battle was over. None were executed by the victor: the barbarity of civil feuds had not yet taken place, provoked by the reciprocal cruelties which ſpeedily followed.

Henry, wounded in the neck by an arrow, which hurtled in ſhowers on him, retreated to a poor cottage, where he was found by the conquerors. They aſked forgiveneſs on their knees; which the humane prince readily gave, on condition they would ſtop [Page 280] the carnage. He became their priſoner, and they of courſe became governors of the kingdom. The abbey eſcaped plunder; for fortunately the king did not make it his head-quarters.

THE king, from this time to the year 1461, remained a mere ſhadow of royalty, entirely under the directions of the Yorkiſts, His queen was driven from him, under the terror of a proſcription. That ſpirited woman did not employ her time in prayers, or counting her beads, like her weak huſband; but, by the aſſiſtance of her northern friends, raiſed a potent army, fought and ſlew the duke of York at the battle of Wakefield, on December 30th, 1460; and, marching towards London, gave occaſion to a ſecond battle at St. Alban's.

THE earl of Warwick, [Note: SECOND BATTLE AT ST. ALBAN'S.] now in poſſeſſion of the king, haſtened from London with the captive monarch, and took poſt in St. Alban's. Margaret, attempting to paſs through the town, was repulſed by a ſtorm of arrows, directed from the market-place; but ſhe quickly forced her way through a lane into St. Peter's ſtreet. The conflict became then very bloody; and, after great ſlaughter, both parties quitted the town, and continued the battle, with the animoſity uſual in civil feuds, on Bernard Heath, north of St. Alban's, as far as the village of Sauntbridge, and even beyond it, at a place called No Man's Land *. There a corps de reſerve of Warwick's army, to the number of four or five thouſand, made ſo vigorous an onſet on the Lancaſtrians, as to render the victory for ſome time doubtful. At length the treachery or cowardice of a captain Lovelace, who commanded the Kentiſhmen, determined the [Page 281] day: he quitted the field, and left a complete victory to the queen. The confederated lords fled, and left the king in company of Lord Bonvil and Sir Thomas Kiriel, a gallant knight of Kent, both Yorkiſts. Theſe gentlemen Henry had prevaled on to ſtay with him, aſſuring them of pardon and ſecurity; but his barbarous queen, in contempt of the royal word, and in defiance of all good faith, cauſed them to be beheaded in preſence of her ſon Edward *, as it were to familiarize the young prince with blood, and train him to cruelty.

THREE-AND-TWENTY hundred men periſhed in this battle. Only one man of rank was ſlain, Sir John Grey of Groby; who had that morning, with twelve others, been knighted by the king at Colney. His widow became queen to Edward IV. and occaſioned freſh calamities to the kingdom; and proved the innocent cauſe of the deſtruction of her kindred.

ON quitting St. Alban's, I paſſed by the long wall which incloſed the nunnery of Sopewell, [Note: SOPEWELL.] made of ſtone mixed with great quantities of Roman tiles. The religious houſe took its riſe from two pious women, who on the ſite built a hovel with boughs of trees, and covered it with bark, in order to indulge in privacy their fondneſs for prayer and faſting. Abbot Jeffry, about the year 1140, encouraged their virtue, by founding a nunnery of Benedictines.

IN this houſe Henry VIII. was privately married, by Doctor Rowland Lee, afterwards biſhop of Lichfield, to Anna Bullein. It maintained thirteen nuns: on the diſſolution, only nine; when [Page 282] its revenues, according to Dugdale, were £45. 7s. 10d.; to Speed, £68. 8s. It was firſt granted to Sir Richard Lee; but finally became the property of Sir Harbottle Grimſton, and his heirs *.

AFTER paſſing through the village of London Colney, [Note: LONDON COLNEY.] ſeated on the Colne, [Note: RIDGEHILL.] at about a mile's diſtance I aſcend Ridgehill, remarkable for a moſt extenſive and rich view northwards of the fine country about St. Alban's. At South Mims, enter the county of MIDDLESEX; [Note: WROTHAM PARK.] and ſoon after leave, on the left, Wrotham Park; a beautiful houſe, built by admiral Byng, who was put to death in 1757!

ABOUT a mile farther, [Note: BATTLE OF BARNET.] reach the bloody field of Barnet, marked by a column, that ſhews the ſpot where the deciſive battle was fought between the houſes of York and Lancaſter, which fixed the crown on the head of Edward IV.

THE great earl of Warwick, reſentful of the injuries he had received of that prince, depoſed him from the throne he had enabled him to mount. So popular was the character of this potent baron, that a numerous army flew to his ſtandard: every one was proud of bearing his cogniſance, the bear and ragged ſtaff, in his cap: ſome of gold, enamelled; others of ſilver; and thoſe who could not afford the precious metals, cut them out of white ſilk, or cloth. When he viſited London in peaceful times, he came attended by ſix hundred men, in red jackets, embroidered [Page 283] with ragged ſtaves before and behind. He kept houſe at his palace in Warwick-Lane. Six oxen were conſumed at every breakfaſt; and every tavern was full of his meat; and every gueſt was allowed to carry off as much, roaſted or boiled, as he could bear upon his long dagger *.

Edward, on his return to England, was joyfully received in London. Hearing that Warwick was on his march towards the capital, he haſtened to meet him, and poſted himſelf at Barnet. So bad was the intelligence in thoſe days, that Edward advanced in the night ſo near to Warwick's camp, that the earl, unapprized of his vicinity, kept firing his ordnance over that of the king the greateſt part of the night, without the leſt execution. On the morning, being that of Eaſter-day, April 14th 1471, both the leaders placed their armies in order. Warwick wore as his cogniſance an oſtrich's feather , the badge of Edward, the ſon of king Henry: his friend Vere earl of Oxford, a ſtar; the fatal cauſe of the loſs of the day. Edward wore a ſun; from a fancy, that before the battle of Mortimer's Croſs, he ſaw three diſtinct ſuns at laſt unite in one . The battle began at four in the morning, which opened in a thick miſt, with that deadly hate which the long ſeries of civil wars had created. The battle raged with various ſucceſs, as might be expected from the undaunted courage and animoſity of the leaders, and from the reflection on the certain deſtruction conſequential of defeat. They fought obſcured in fog till ten o'clock: victory ſeemed to incline to Warwick; when his people, miſtaking the ſtars in the helms of Oxford's ſoldiers, for the ſuns of [Page 284] Edward's party, charged their own friends; who, crying Treaſon! Treaſon! fled with eight hundred men. The marquis of Montacute, with the fickleneſs uſual in thoſe times, had privily agreed with Edward to deſert his brother Warwick, and had changed his livery. This was diſcovered by ſome of the earl's men; who inſtantly put him to death: a fit reward of fraternal perfidy! Warwick, ſeeing his brother ſlain, Oxford fled, and the fortune of the day turned againſt him, leaped on a horſe, in hopes of eſcaping; but coming to an impaſſable wood, was there killed, and ſtripped naked; and, after being expoſed, with the body of Montacute, for three or four days, in the church of St. Paul's, was interred in the abbey of Biſham in Berkſhire, founded by the Montacutes, his maternal anceſtors. About four thouſand were ſlain on both ſides; who were interred for the moſt part on the ſpot. Edward built here a chapel, and, according to the cuſtom of the times, appointed a prieſt to ſay maſs for the ſouls of the deceaſed. This place, in the days of Stow *, was converted into a dwelling-houſe. The following converſation relative to this battle, between Civis and Roger, extracted from Doctor Bullein's Dialogues both pleaſante & pietifull, &c. will probably be acceptable to the reader:

Civis. How like you this heath? Here was foughten a fearful field, called Palme Sondaie Battaile, in king Edward the fowerthes tyme. Many thouſands were ſlain on this grounde. Here was ſlain the noble erle of Warwiche.
[Page 285] Roger. If it pleaſe your maiſterſhip, my granndfather was alſo here, with twenty tall men of the pariſhe where I was borne, and none of them eſcaped but my granndfather only. I had his bowe in my hande many a tyme: no man could ſtir the ſtring when it was bent. Alſo his harnes was worn upon our S. Georges back, in our churche, many a colde winter after; and I hearde my grand-dame tell how he eſcaped.
Civis. Tell me, Roger, I pray thee, howe he did eſcape the danger?
Roger. Sir, when the battaile was pitched, and appointed to bee foughten nere unto this windmill, and the ſomons given by the harolts of armies, that ſpere, polax, blackbille, bowe and arrowes, ſhould be ſette a worke the daie following, and that it ſhoulde be tried by bloudie weapon, a ſodaine fear fell on my grandfather; and the ſame night, when it was darke, he ſtale out of the erle's campe, for fear of the king's diſpleaſure, and hid him in the woode; and at lengthe he eſpied a greate hollowe oke tree, with armes ſomewhat greene, and climbed up, partly through climing, for he was a thatcher; but feare was worthe a ladder to him: and then, by the helpe of the writhen arm of the tree, he went down, and there remained a good while; and was fedde there by the ſpace of a monthe with old achorns and nuttes which ſquirrels had brought in; and alſo did in his ſallet kepe the raine water for his drinke, and at length eſcaped the danger.

AT a ſmall diſtance ſtands Hadley church, and pleaſant village, [Note: HADLEY CHURCH.] on the edge of Enfield Chace; where, in my boyiſh age, I paſſed many happy days with my uncle, the Reverend [Page 286] John Pennant; who, during forty years, was the worthy miniſter of the place. Here had been, in early times, a hermitage; which Geffry de Magnaville, about the year 1136, beſtowed on his newfounded abbey of Walden in Eſſex *. The church was probaby a chapel to the hermitage, and, from its being annexed to Walden, was called Hadley Monachorum. It is at preſent a donative in the gift of the lords of the manor. The preſent church is built with flints. Over the weſt door is the date 1498, and the ſculpture of a roſe and a wing. The ſame is found under the upper window of Enfield, and on a gateway oppoſite to the Curtain in Shoreditch, once belonging to the Benedictine nunnery of Haliwell. Sir Thomas Lovel, who lived at the period in which this church was built, was a great benefactor to the nunnery, and had his reſidence at Enfield. Whether he contributed to the building of Hadley, does not appear; otherwiſe it would ſeem to have been a badge of his: but others have conjectured it to have been a rebus, expreſſive of the name of an architect, Roſewing.

ON the top of the ſteeple there remains an iron pitch-pot, [Note: BEACON.] deſigned as a beacon, occaſionally to be fired, to alarm the country in caſe of invaſion. It takes its name from the Saxon Becnian, to call by ſigns. Before the time of Edward III. the ſignals were given by firing great ſtacks of wood; but in the eleventh of his reign, it was firſt ordered that this ſpecies of alarm ſhould be made with pitch-pots placed on ſtandards , or on elevated buildings, within due diſtances of one another.

[Page 287] Hadley ſtands at the edge of Enfield Chace *, a vaſt tract of woodland, [Note: ENFIELD CHACE.] filled with deer. The view of the county of Eſſex, over the trees, is extremely beautiful. This great extent of foreſt was firſt granted, by William the Conqueror, to Geffry de Magnaville, a noble Norman, one of his followers: the name afterwards corrupted to Mandeville. His poſterity were earls of Eſſex till the death of William Fitzpier, in 1227, his deſcendant by the female line; when this chace, and the title of Eſſex, fell to Humphry de Bohun earl of Hereford, in right of his mother, ſiſter to Fitzpier . It continued with the Bohuns till the deceaſe of [Page 288] the tenth of the name; after which, the property of the Chace deſcended to Henry earl of Derby, afterwards Henry IV. by virtue of his marriage with Mary, younger ſiſter to the laſt Bohun, and became annexed to the dutchy of Lancaſter *.

FROM Hadley to Barnet is half a mile: [Note: BARNET.] a ſmall thoroughfare town on the top of a hill; whence its name, corrupted from the Saxon Bergnet, a little hill. It has alſo the title of Chipping Barnet, on account of its market. In Saxon times, a vaſt wood filled this tract; which was granted to the abbey of St. Alban's. An inſcription in the midſt of the church ſhews it was founded by a Beauchamp: [Note: CHURCH.] ‘Ora pro anima Johannis Beauchamp hujus operis fundatoris.’

HERE is a fair monument to a countryman of mine, Thomas Ravenſcroft, Eſquire, born at Hawarden, of an antient family in that pariſh. He lies in a gown and ruff, recumbent. He died in 1630. He and his ſon James were conſiderable benefactors to this place. To him was owing the veſtry-room; to James, an alms-houſe for ſix poor women, which he amply endowed.

Near Barnet is a medicinal well, a gentle and ſafe chalybeate; in former times in great repute.

FROM this town is a quick deſcent. [Note: WHETSTONE.] Near the village of Whetſtone I again enter Middleſex; [Note: FINCHLEY COMMON.] which I quitted on going into Barnet. Juſt beyond Whetſtone, the road paſſes over Finchley Common; infamous for robberies, and often planted with gibbets, the penalty of murderers. The reſort of travellers of all ranks, and the multitudes of heavy carriages which crowd this road, [Page 289] compared with thoſe between St. Dennis and Paris, give a melancholy idea of the overgrown ſize of our capital, which makes ſuch annual havock of the lives and fortunes of the diſtant viſita [...]ts.

ABOUT a mile beyond this common, ſtands Highgate, a large village, [Note: HIGHGATE.] ſeated on a lofty eminence, overlooking the ſmoky extent of the town. Here, in my memory, ſtood a large gateway, at which, in old times, a [...]oll was paid to the biſhop of London, for liberty granted (between four and five hundred years ago) by one of his predeceſſors, for paſſing from Whetſtone, along the preſent road, through his parks, inſtead of the old [...] way by Friarn Barnet, Colme-b [...]ch, Muſwell-hill, Crouch [...]d, and (leaving Highgate to the weſt) by the church of Paneras. In the time of queen Elizabeth, it was farmed from the biſhop for forty pounds a year *. After reſting for a ſmall ſpace over the buſy proſpect, I deſcended into the plain, reached the metropolis, and diſappeared in the crowd.

1.2. PART II. FROM NORTHAMPTON TO LONDON.

[Page 291]

IN a preceding year, I determined to vary part of my journey [...] to the capital, by quitting the common road near Daventry. I began with making a digreſſion about five miles to the ſouth of that town, as far as Fawſley. I paſſed through the village, and by the church of Badby. The manor, in Saxon times, [Note: BADBY.] was beſtowed on the abbey of Crowland, by one Norman, a ſheriff; and [...] grant was confirmed by Witlaf and Beored, kings of M [...]r [...]i [...], in 868. That great convent held it for no [...] very long [...]. In 1017 it devolved to Leofric earl of Leiceſter, by [...] of his brother, alſo of the name of Norman, to [...] houſe of Crowland had granted it for one hundred [...], on the payment of a pepper-corn▪ but Leofric ſevered [Page 292] [...] on the abbey of E [...]ham. [...] VIII. [...]ave it to Sir Edm [...]nd Kinghtly the [...] of Sir Edward [...] of [...] and it now is the ſole [...] of [...] Eſquire.

[...] the pariſh, and at a ſmall diſtance to the weſt of the [...], noted for the vaſt d [...]h and rampa [...] [...]. It is of an irregular ſhape, conforming to the ſhape of a hill; notwithſtanding which, it may have been [...], and poſſeſſed afterwards by the Saxons; who beſtowed on [...] preſent name of A [...]d, which ſignifies, in the Britiſh, high: [...], which in their own tongue, is an eminence*.

AT a [...] diſtance from hence is Cateſ [...]y: long the prop [...] of a family of the ſame name. Sir William Cateſ [...]y one of the three favorites of Richard III. was lord of this manor. [...] anceſtors poſſeſſed the place in the reign of Edward III, and [...] in his poſterity till the infamous concluſion of his [...], the execrable con [...] of the Gun-p [...] Plot.

FROM Badly, I rode through ſome pretty woods, [Note: [...] ] and through E [...]-park, to the houſe of [...]ſ [...]ey, the ſeat of the antient [...] o [...] the [...]; ſtanding in an improved de [...]eſne, above ſome pretty pieces of [...]ter, winding along a fine woo [...]ed [...]

THE preſent owner derives it from a very long race of [...] [...]ors, who were ſettled here from the year 1 [...]15: at which [...] it was purchaſed by Richard Knightly, deſcended from a Stafford-ſhire [...]a [...]ly [...] taking in name from a manor in that [...] [Page 293] [...] they had poſſeſſed from the twentieth year of William the Conqueror.

THE preſent houſe is a motley building; part being exceedingly old, [Note: HOUSE.] part middle-aged, and part new. The hall is a mag [...] [...] gothic, of a vaſt height, timbered at top, and fifty-two [...] long. The receſs, or bow-window, is richly ornamented at [...] with ſculpture in ſtone. Ail the other windows are very [...], and placed at a great height above the floor. In every [...] arms of the family, and their alliances. I enumerated above ſixty; for it has been greatly allied, from very early [...].

THE chimney-piece is large, grand, and well carved. Above [...] great window. The ſmoke is conveyed by flue [...] paſſing on [...] of it; ſo that the chimney does not in the leſt diſturb [...] [...]formity of the room: at the lower end are two arched [...] There would be a faultleſs prop [...]iety, if it was not for [...] wooden ſkreen treſpaſſing on the lower end.

THE kitchen is moſt hoſpitably divided. On each ſide of the [...] is an enormous fire-place, [Note: KITCHEN.] fitted for a hecatomb of [...] they are placed back to back, ſo as not to interrupt their [...] operations.

[...] portraits preſerved here are very curious: [Note: PORTRAITS.] than of Sir [...] Knightly caught my eye firſt, as ſenior of the company. He is repreſented half-length, in black, with ſhort brown hair, [...] and a ſmall beard; one hand on [...]us ſword, the other [...]. I find nothing more remarkable of him than being [...] more active ſpirit.

Sir Richard Knightly: who is painted in two periods of [...] in advanced years, ſitting; his head kept warm by a [Page 294] coi [...]; [...] dreſs black; his ruff laced. Near him are his ſpectacles, a Bible, and hour-g [...]a [...]s. Between his leg, is a little girl playing with his ſtick, while he, [...]ing one hand on her ſhoulder, forms a true picture of aged affection. In the inſcription he is ſtiled of Norton; a manor belonging to the family, and poſſibly the reſidence of Sir Richard at this time

THE other portrait repreſents [...]m in the thirty-third year of his age, A. D. 1 [...]67. On his head is a bonnet: his dreſs is yellow: his clock black: his ruff ſmall. He is painted with a ſword and ſmall rod. It ſhould ſeem, from ſome not ill-wrote [...] that he had p [...]ſſed his youth licentiouſly; but afterwards made a [...] reform. They begin,

In [...] Fotuna.
So hit [...] by helpe of hevenlie powers,
My doubtful liffe hath [...]onne his poſtinge race;
Whos [...] you [...] hath paſſed ſuch ſtormie ſhowers
As might have cute me of in halfe this ſpace.
Yet mightie JO [...], by his celeſtial grace,
Hath brought my barke to ſuch a bliſsful ſhore,
As da [...]ie doth advaunce me more and more,
In vita Fortuna.

It is probable he had an enthuſiaſtic turn. He took part with the puritans, who early beg [...]n to give diſturbance to the church of England. Their ſpirits were ſo greatly e [...]t [...]tered by the unfavorable concluſion of the mock conference between their [...]iniſter [...] and the royal paedagogue, in 1603 *, that they gave [...]ent [Page 295] [...] their rage in variety of moſt ſ [...]urrilous pamphlets againſt the [...]la [...]ical order. Theſe were the productions of ſecret preſſes, [...] travelled from place to place. The lord of Fawſley was [...] guilty of harboring then. He was cited before the Star [...], and would have been ſeverely treated, had it not been [...] the mild Whitgift, archbiſhop of Canterbury, who had been [...] principal object of their abuſe *. The agreement of Sir [...] with Sir Francis Haſtings, in a petition to the Houſe for [...]n [...]ing a toleration to the Roman catholics, muſt not be thought [...] [...]nſiſtent with the views of his party; for, had, ſucceſs followed the puritans might have clamed, and moſt probably ob [...] the ſame indulgence. He died in 1615.

HIS firſt wife was Mary, daughter of Mr. Richard Fermor, of [...] Neſton: his ſecond, was lady Elizabeth Seymour, ſixth * daughter to the protector duke of Somerſet. There are two por [...] of this lady: one dated 1590, at [...]. Her hands and face [...] [...]mall: her dreſs a quilled ruff; black gown hung and beſet [...] vaſt ſtrings and rows of pearls. The other is alſo in black, [...] ruff. This lady brought her huſband ſeven ſons and [...] daughters: died in 1602, and was interred in the church at [...] .

[...]LL-LENGTH of Thomas lord Grey of [...]roby, in armour, [...], a turnover, and boots; with a boy in red giving him [...]. This nobleman was eldeſt ſon to the firſt earl of [...], and married to Anne, ſecond daughter of Edward [...] earl of Bath. He is repreſented as a young man of mean [...] who took a determined part in the civil wars againſt [Page 296] his ſovereign: was active againſt him in the field, and ſubmitted, [...] others equally warm in the cauſe of liberty, declined the [...]nge [...]s office, to ſit among the judges on the trial of the king; and finally in ſign his name to the warrant which brought him. to the block. Theſe ſervices were fully rewarded. He had [...] [...]mou [...] of a thouſand a year beſtowed on him *, and [...] of the royal manor of Holdenby; but before the Reſtoration, [...] luckily reſcued him from the fate of [...]is b [...] d [...]inquents.

I MUST cloſe this [...] mentioning two moſt beautiful heads of women, do [...]e in crayons; much to the honor of the fair performer, a lady of the preſent generation.

THE church is dedicated to St. Pet [...], [Note: CHURCH] and was beſtowed by Henry II. on the mo [...]ks of Daventry. On the diſſolution, it was given to the college of St. [...]ſ [...]ide, Oxford; [Note: TOMB [...].] but is now in the gift of Mr Knightly. Within are numbers, of antient tombs of the [...] from its firſt ſettlement in this country; but many of them much [...]lated. That of Sir Richard Knightly, who died in 15 [...]4, and Jane his wife, are magnificently repreſented [...], rec [...]mbent, on an altar-tomb: he in [...] with a herald's mantle over it, and a defence of [...] over his th [...]g [...].

SIR Edward Knightly, and his wife Urſula, ſiſter to John Vere earl of Oxford is figured on a braſs plate; and, according to the faſhion of the times, is armed, notwithſtanding he was a ſerjeant of law. He died in 1542.

[Page 296] [...]

[Page 297] A VAST mural monument preserves the memory of another Sir Valentine and his ſpouſe, Anne, daughter of Sir Edward Ferrers of Badeſly, in Warwickſhire. He died in 1566. This memorial is a great pile of marble, with a great black ſarcophagus in the middle, and finiſhed with a pediment.

THE ſeats are moſt ridiculouſly carved with variety of droll ſubjects: ſuch as a cat fiddling, and the mice dancing; an animal riding on a ſow, bridled and ſaddled: and other figures equally calculated to ſpoil the gravity of the beſt-diſpoſed congregation.

FROM Fawſley I returned into the London road, near the eighth ſtone from Touceſter; and croſſing it, reached the village and church of Flore, or Flower, pleaſantly ſeated on riſing ground, [Note: FLORE.] at a ſmall diſtance from the great road. In Doomſday-book it is called Flora; perhaps from its agreeable ſituation. I left the church unviſited. I muſt ſpeak from Mr. Bridges * of the moſt remarkable particulars. It is dedicated to All Saints. It was beſtowed in the reign of king John, [Note: CHURCH.] by a Ralph de Kaines, on Merton abbey, in Surrey; but at the diſſolution, was given to Chriſt-church, Oxford; under the patronage of which it continues.

ON a grey ſtone, in braſs, is the figure of the VIRGIN, [Note: TOMBS.] claſping our SAVIOUR in her arms. Beneath them is Thomas Knareſburght, in armour, and Agnes his wife; both with ſuppliant hands, addreſſing themſelves to the object of the adoration of their days. She in theſe words: O Blyſſyd Lady, pray to IHU, of us to have [Page 298] mercy. He died in die ramis palmarum, 1450; ſhe, on the 26th of March, 1488.

THE following curious epitaph informs us of the end of Robert Saunders, and Margaret his wife.

ROBERT Saunders, the ſeconde ſone of Thomas Saunders of Sybbertoft, lyethe here buryed:

To Margret Staunton, the heyre of Thomas Staunton, he was fyrſte marryed;

WHICH Margret being dead, Joyſe Goodwyn he tooke to wyfe.

THE XIII daye of November, Ao. XCVO. XLIX. he departyd thys lyfe;

AND reſte the at GOD'S pleaſure, tyll the daye of perfection.

GOD ſende us and hym then a joyful reſurrection. Amen.

CLOSE by Flower I enter on the new turnpike-road, which forms a communication between Daventry and Northampton, and which opens into the London road between Dodford and Weedon.

ABOUT two miles from Northampton, I paſſed through the village of Upton, [Note: UPTON.] and by Upton-hall, the ſeat of Sir Thomas Samwell, Baronet, and property of his anceſtors ſince the year 1600; when it was purchaſed from Sir Richard Knightley by William Samwell, Eſquire, a gentleman of antient Corniſh deſcent.

AFTER a ſhort ſpace, I croſſed the northern water, or Naeſbyhead, a river that riſes due north, and by its junction a little below with another ſtream, which flows from Fawſley-pools, forms that which receives at Northampton the name of Nen. Leland calls one of theſe branches the Avon; the other the Weedon.

[Page 299] I ENTERED this beautiful town at the weſt gate, [Note: NORTHAMPTON.] and paſſed beneath the ſite of the caſtle. Nothing, excepting an outer wall and foſs, remains; in part of which is a vaſt ſtratum of ferruginous geodes.

OPPOSITE to the caſtle is a great mount, [Note: CASTLE.] once the foundation of ſome more antient fortreſs; perhaps one of the line of forts which croſſed this and the neighboring counties. One exiſts at Touceſter, and another I ſhall have occaſion to ſpeak of, lying about three miles to the eaſt. I cannot ſpeak with certainty of the period in which it was occupied by the Saxons, who gave it the name of Hamtune. Mr. Bridges ſuppoſes it to have riſen from the ruins of Eltavon, a Roman ſtation on the ſide of the town. It appears that the Danes were poſſeſſed of Northampton in 917; and from thence long made their barbarous excurſions*. Before the year 1010, they had quitted the place; but in their inroads in that year, they burnt the town, and deſolated the country.

IN 1064, it found in the Northumbrians, under Morcar, who had advanced as far as Northampton, a cruel ſet of banditti, who committed moſt unprovoked outrages. They murdered the inhabitants, burnt the houſes, and carried off thouſands of cattle, and multitudes of priſoners. But in the reign of Edward the Confeſſor, here were LX burgeſſes in the king's lordſhip, and LX houſes. At the time of the Conqueſt, fourteen were waſte; but at the time of the ſurvey, there were forty burgeſſes in the new borough.

[Page 300] Simon de Sancto Licio, or Senliz, a noble Norman, founded here the caſtle. He had married Maude, daughter of Waltheof, the Saxon earl of Northampton, and ſucceeded to the title.

THE Conqueror had beſtowed this town, and whole hundred of Fawſley, then worth forty pounds a year, on St. Liz, to provide ſhoes for his horſes*. From that period it became conſiderable, and frequently was the ſeat of parlements, and was on ſeveral other occaſions honored with the royal preſence.

I MUST particularize the great council held there in 1164, in which the contumacy of Thomas Becket was puniſhed by a heavy fine. At this time, the whole people came, as one man; and yet all were unequal to the pride and obſtinacy of the ſingle prelate. The other great council, or parlement, was ſummoned in 1176, to confirm the ſtatutes of Clarendon; in which the rights of the crown and cuſtoms of the realm, eſpecially as to judicial proceedings, had been eſtabliſhed.

DURING the civil conteſts which England was ſo unhappily afflicted with, it came in for its ſhare of the calamities incident to war. In that between king John and the barons; it was ſtoutly defended on the part of the king againſt Robert Fitzwalter, fanatically ſtiled marſhal of the army of God and the holy church ; who, for want of military engines, was obliged to raiſe the ſiege§. This poſt was of ſuch importance, that, after the charter of liberties was extorted from John, the conſtable for the time being was ſworn (by the twenty-five barons appointed as a committee to [Page 301] enforce its execution) to govern the caſtle according to their pleaſure. This was done in the fullneſs of their power; but as ſoon as the perjured prince got the upper hand, he appointed Fulk de Breans (a valiant but baſe-born Norman) to the command, as one in whom he could entirely confide*.

IN the year 1263, the younger Mounfort and his barons held it againſt their ſovereign Henry III. The king marched againſt them with a great force; and having with his battering-rams made a great breach in that part of the town-walls neareſt to the monaſtery of St. Andrew, entered the place, and, after a ſhort but vigorous reſiſtance, made the whole garriſon priſoners.

IN 1460, Henry VI. made Northampton the place of rendezvous of his forces. The ſtrength of his army encouraged his ſpirited queen to offer battle to his young antagoniſt, the earl of Marche, then at the head of a potent army. A conference was demanded by the earl, and rejected by the royal party; who marched out of the town, and encamped in the meadows between it and Hardinſton. The battle was fierce and bloody; but by the treachery of Edmund lord Grey of Ruthen; who deſerted his unhappy maſter, victory declared in favor of the houſe of York. Thouſands were ſlain, or drowned in the Nen: among them the duke of Buckinghum, earl of Shrewſbury, John viſcount Beaumont, and lord Egremont. The duke was interred in the church of the Grey Friars; others of the men of rank, in the adjacent abbey of De la Prè; and others, in the hoſpital of St. John, in the town.

THE town had been incloſed with a ſtrong wall, probably before [Page 302] the reign of king John; for mention is made, in the ſecond year of his reign, of the eaſt-gate, one of the four. The walls were of breadth ſufficient for ſix men to walk abreaſt. Both walls and caſtle were early neglected; for they appear to have been in 1593 in a ruinous ſtate*; yet part of it was uſed as a priſon before the year 1675: and within had been a royal free-chapel, dedicated to St. George; to which a chaplain was preſented by the crown, with a ſalary of Ls. a year.

IN the civil wars of the laſt century, Northampton was ſeized by lord Brook, for the uſe of the parlement. In 1642, he fortified it with a foſs and ramparts; converted the bridges into draw-bridges; and brought ſeveral pieces of cannon here to defend it, in caſe of attack. Whether it diſtinguiſhed itſelf by any particular acts of diſloyalty beyond other places, I cannot ſay; but in 1662, purſuant to an order of council, the walls, gates, and part of the caſtle, were demoliſhed.

[Note: RELIGIOUS HOUSES.] THE moſt antient of the religious houſes in this town was the priory of St. Andrew, [Note: ST. ANDREW'S.] founded about the year 1076, by Simon de St. Liz, (firſt earl of Northampton of his name) and Maude his wife. He peopled it with cluniacs, and in 1084 made it ſubject to the abbey of St. Mary de Caritate, a monaſtery upon the Loire. This occaſioned it to undergo the common fate of all alien priories, that of being ſeized into the king's hands. It was ſurrendered to Henry at the diſſolution, by Francis Abràe, then [Page 303] prior; who, in reward for his ready compliance, was appointed the firſt dean of Peterborough *.

ITS revenues, according to Dugdale, was £263. 7s. 1d.; to Speed, £344. 13s. 7d. The houſe ſtood near the north end of the town, and, with the demeſne lands, was granted by Edward VI. to Sir Thomas Smith .

THE Grey Friars, or Franciſcans, [Note: GREY FRIARS.] had a houſe on the weſt ſide of the place. They originally hired a habitation in St. Giles's pariſh, but afterwards built one on ground given them by the town, in the year 1245. John Windlowe, the laſt warden, and ten of his brethren, ſurrendered their poor revenues, of £6. 13s. 4d. per annum, on October 28th, 1539; after which it was granted to one Richard Taverner.

ABOVE this houſe was a priory of Carmelites, or White Friars, [Note: WHITE FRIARS.] founded in 1271, by Simon Mountfort and Thomas Chetwood. It was valued at £10. 10s. and granted to William Rameſden , after being reſigned by John Howel, the laſt prior, and eight brethren.

THE Dominicans, or Black Friars, were fixed here before 1240. [Note: BLACK FRIARS.] John Dalyngton was either founder, or a conſiderable benefactor. Its revenues were only £5. 11s. 5d. § It was reſigned to the crown by its prior William Dyckyns, and ſeven of his friars.

William Peverel, natural ſon to the Conqueror, founded, [Note: BLACK CANONS.] before 1112, a houſe of Black Canons, in honor of St. James. This [Page 304] Peverel has no leſs than forty-four manors granted to him in this county. The revenues of this houſe amounted to £175. 8s. 2d. according to Dugdale; or £213. 17s. 2d. according to Speed. Henry VIII. granted it to Nicholas Giffard *. Its laſt abbot was William Brokden, who, with five monks, reſigned it in 1540.

THE Auſtin Friars, [Note: AUSTIN FRIARS.] or Friars Eremites, had a houſe here in the Bridge-ſtreet, founded in 1322, by Sir John Longueville of Wolverton, in Buckinghamſhire; and ſeveral of his name were interred there. John Goodwyn, the prior, with ſeven friars, reſigned it to the king in 1539. It was ſoon after granted to Robert Dighton. Its revenues are unknown.

THE college of All Saints was founded in 1459, [Note: ALL SAINTS.] with licence of purchaſing to the value of twenty marks. It conſiſted only of two fellows. In 1535, it was found, clear of all reprizes, to be worth XXXIX s. IV d. College-lane, in this town, takes its name from it.

THE hoſpital of St. John is an antient building, [Note: HOSPITAL OF ST. JOHN.] ſtanding in Bridge-ſtreet. It conſiſts of a chapel, a large hall with apartments for the brethren, and two rooms above for the co-brothers. It was founded for the reception of infirm poor, probably by William St. Clere, archdeacon of Northampton; who died poſſeſſed of that dignity in 1168. He is ſuppoſed to have been brother to one of the Simon St. Clere; but Leland juſtly inſinuates, that they never were called by that name, but by that of St. Liz .

AT the diſſolution, its clear revenues were £57. 19s. 6d. Sir Francis Brian was then high ſteward of the houſe, and had [Page 305] 40s. yearly; and eight poor perſons were maintained at 2d. a day each: a charity founded by John Dallington, clerk, and confirmed in 1340, by Henry Burgherſt, biſhop of Lincoln. It is at preſent governed by a maſter, and two co-brothers or chaplains, whoſe ſalary is £ v. each, with XI s. each, in lieu of firing, and Xs. on renewing of leaſes. The eight poor people are named by the maſter, and maintained in lodging, firing, and common room, and 1s. 2d. weekly.

ST. Thomas's hoſpital ſtands a little more to the ſouth of St. John's, [Note: ST. THOMAS'S.] beyond the ſouth gate, in the ſuburbs called The Quarters, which extend to the ſouth bridge. This owes its foundation, in 1450, to the reſpect the citizens had for St. Thomas Becket. Originally it maintained twelve poor people: ſix more were added in 1654, by Sir John Langham; and one more of later years, by Richard Maſſingberd. It is governed by a warden, who is one of the aldermen; and the vicar of All Saints is the chaplain, with an annual ſalary of £ III. XVIs. VIII d. *

I FIND, beſides, an hoſpital on the ſouth ſide of the town, in the pariſh of Hardingſtone, dedicated to St. Leonard, for a maſter and leprous brethren; founded before 1240. The mayor and burgeſſes were patrons. Dugdale valued it at ten pounds a year.

I MUST not omit mention of the ſhort-lived univerſity which exiſted in this town; [Note: UNIVERSITY.] and which aroſe from the following occaſion: — In 1238, Otho, the pope's legate, happened to viſit the univerſity of Oxford, and took his reſidence at the neighboring [Page 306] convent of Oſney. He was one day reſpectfully waited on by the ſtudents; who were inſolently refuſed admittance by the Italian porter. At length, after intolerable provocation from the clerk of the kitchen, a Welſh ſtudent drew his bow, and ſhot him dead*. The reſentment of government, and the fear of puniſhment, cauſed the firſt ſeceſſion of the ſtudents to Northampton, and other places. In ſucceeding years freſh riots aroſe, and occaſioned farther migrations. At length, theſe migrations were made under ſanction of the king; who imagined that the diſturbances aroſe from the too great concourſe of ſcholars to one place. It is ſaid, that not fewer than fifteen thouſand ſtudents ſettled in this town. Whether from reſentment of former proceedings againſt them, or from the uſual diſlike youth has to governing powers, they took the part of the barons. They formed themſelves into companies, had their diſtinguiſhing banner, and, when Henry III. made his attack on Northampton, proved by far his moſt vigorous opponents. After the king had made himſelf maſter of the place, he determined to hang every ſtudent; but being at length appeaſed, he permitted them to return to Oxford, under the conduct of Simon Mountfort, and aboliſhed the univerſity of Northampton .

THE town is extremely finely ſituated on an eminence, [Note: TOWS DESCRIBED.] gently ſloping to the river, which bounds it on the ſouth, as it alſo does on the weſt. The ſtreets are in general ſtrait, and very handſomely built. The great market-place is an ornament to the town: few can boaſt the like. Much of the beauty of [Page 307] Northampton is owing to the calamity it ſuſtained by fire, on September 20th, 1675; when the greateſt part was laid in aſhes. The houſes were at that time chiefly wooden. Twenty-five thouſand pounds were collected by briefs and private charity towards its relief; and the king gave a thouſand tons of timber, out of Whittlewood foreſt, and remitted the duty of chimney-money in this town for ſeven years: ſo that it was ſoon rebuilt; and changed its wooden edifices for more ſecure and ornamental houſes of ſtone.

THE church of All Saints fell a victim to the flames. The old church was a large pile, [Note: CHURCHES.] with a tower in the center. It was rebuilt with great magnificence, and is a conſiderable ornament to this pretty town. The portico is very elegant, ſupported in front by eight columns of the Ionic order. The body ſtands on four lofty columns, and has a neat dome in the middle. The roof beautifully ſtuccoed. This church, and that of St. Peter, were beſtowed on the priory of St. Andrew, by Simon de St. Liz, the founder. All Saints is at preſent in the gift of the members of the corporation, who are inhabitants of the pariſh.

THE church of the Holy Sepulchre was ſuppoſed to have been built by the Knights Templars, on the model of that at Jeruſalem. The imitative part is round, [Note: HOLY SEPULCHRE.] with a nave iſſuing from it. In the round part is a periſtyle of eight round pillars, thirteen feet eight inches high, and twelve feet three in circumference. The capitals conſiſt of two round fillets: the arches ſharp and plain. The ſpace from the wall to the pillars is eleven feet: the diameter, from the inſide of one pillar to that of the oppoſite, is twenty-nine feet two inches. In the center of the area ſtands, in [Page 308] the church at Jeruſalem, the ſuppoſed ſepulchre*; and it is probable a model might be placed in thoſe which we find of the ſame kind in our iſland; for, beſides this, the Temple church in London, and St. Sepulchre's in Cambridge, are built on the ſame plan. The ſteeple, and ſome other parts of that in queſtion, have been added after the building of the circular church.

ST. Peter's church is a ſingular building. [Note: ST. PETER'S.] Two corners of the tower are ornamented with three round pillars: above theſe are two, and above them one; all gradually leſſer than the others. The middle of the tower is ornamented with ſmall round arches, which are continued along the outſide of the body of the church, and have a good effect. Within are two rows of round arches, carved with zigzag work: the pillars which ſupport theſe are alternately ſingle and quadruple. A ſmall monument commemorates John Smith, that eminent metzotinto ſcraper, who died in January 1742, aged ninety.

THE advowſon of this church was given by Edward III. to the hoſpital of St. Catherine, near the Tower, in London, and ſtill remains under its patronage.

WHOSOEVER intended to clear himſelf of any criminal accuſation in this town, was obliged to do it in this church only; having here firſt performed his vigil and prayers in the preceding evening. St. Giles's church ſtands in the eaſt ſkirts of the town; but contains nothing worthy notice.

IN old times Northampton was poſſeſſed of three other [Page 309] churches, which are now deſtroyed. St. Bartholomew's ſtood on the eaſt ſide of the road going to Kingſthorp; and was beſtowed by St. Liz on his convent of St. Andrew. St. Edmund's ſtood without the eaſt gate, and was alſo under the patronage of St. Andrew's: and the church of St. Gregory was the third; alſo the property of that much-favored houſe.

AMONG the public buildings, I firſt ſpeak of the county infirmary; [Note: INFIRMARY.] not on account of the beauty or magnificence of the houſe; for it is laudably deſtitute of both; but becauſe the ſubſcription which ſupports it does honor to the province, by proving the benevolence of its inhabitants. That of 1779 amounted to near eight hundred pounds; and the number of patients perfectly cured, from its foundation in 1744 to the former year, is not fewer than thirteen thouſand one hundred and fifty.

THE county hall is a very handſome building, [Note: COUNTY HALL.] and ornamented in the manner which gives dignity to courts of juſtice. The vulgar are affected with external ſhew, and never pay half the reſpect to a judge ſcampering in boots and bob-wig up the ſtairs of a barn-like court, as they would to the ſame perſon, who adds ſolemnity to his merit, and aſſumes the garb ſuited to his character.

THE jail is at a ſmall diſtance from the ſeſſions houſe, [Note: JAIL.] and was originally a houſe built by a Sir Thomas Haſelwood, and ſold by him to the juſtices of peace.

THE town or guild hall, is an antient building, in which the corporation tranſacts its buſineſs. Northampton was incorporated by Henry II. Henry III. gave it power of chuſing annually a mayor, and two bailiffs, to be elected by all the freemen; but Henry VII. ordered by charter, [Note: CHARTER] that the mayor and his brethren, [Page 310] late mayors, ſhould name forty-eight perſons of the inhabitants, with liberty of changing them as often as was found neceſſary; which forty-eight, with the mayor and his brethren, and ſuch as had been mayors and bailiffs, were annually to elect all future mayors and bailiffs. There are, beſides, a recorder, chamberlain, and town-clerk. The mayor, late mayor, and one other member of the corporation, nominated by the mayor, aldermen, and bailiffs, are juſtices of the peace within the town for one year. The mayor, recorder or his deputy, and one juſtice, are neceſſary to form a ſeſſions: they have power in criminal cauſes to try all offenders; but wiſely leave all but petty larcenies to the judges of the great ſeſſions*.

Northampton is among the moſt antient boroughs. In the parlement held at Acton Burnel, in the time of Edward I. it was one of the nineteen trading towns which ſent two members each. Every inhabitant, reſident or non-reſident, free or not free, has liberty of voting: a cruel privilege for ſuch who have of late years been ambitious of recommending their repreſentatives.

FROM Northampton I viſited Caſtle Aſhby, [Note: CASTLE ASHBY.] the princely ſeat of the Comptons earls of Northampton. It lies about ſix miles ſouth-eaſt of the town, in a wet country, and without any advantage of ſituation. It is a large ſtructure, ſurrounding a handſome ſquare court, with a beautiful ſkreen, the work of Inigo Jones, bounding one ſide. More is attributed to that great architect. Some is more antient than his time; yet he probably had the reſtoring of the old houſe, as the finiſhing appears, by a date on the ſtone balluſtrade, to be 1624, preceded by the pious text, Niſi DOMINUS aedificaverit Domum, in vanum laboraverunt qui aedificant cum.

Figure 12. CASTLE ASHBY.

[Page 311] ONE front is taken up by a long gallery, and at the end is a ſmall room, [Note: PROTRAITS. COMPTON, BISHOP OF LONDON.] the chapel cloſet. In it is a full-length or Henry Compton, biſhop of London. He was youngeſt ſon of the famous loyaliſt earl of Northampton. Went for a ſhort time into the army, after the Reſtoration; but ſoon quitted it for the church. In 1674 he was promoted to the biſhoprick of Oxford, and in the next year to that of London. His abilities were ſaid not to be ſhining; but his diſcharge of his paſtoral office gained him great reputation. He was firmly attached to the conſtitution and re [...]ion of his country; and, in the reign of the bigotted James, underwent the honor of ſuſpenſion, for not complying with the [...]aws of the court. He appeared in arms at Nottingham, in ſupport of the Revolution; and lived till 1713, when he died, at the age of eighty-one.

IN the ſame cloſet is a good head of the Reverend Mr. [...], who began the Saxon Dictionary, [Note: MR. LYE.] finiſhed and publiſhed by the Reverend Mr. Man [...]ing, 1772. He alſo publiſhed Junius's [...]ogicum Angli [...]num, in 1743. He was born at To [...]neſs, in [...] became poſſeſſed of benefices in this county; and died in [...]67, at the rectory of Yardly Haſtings.

THE drawing-room is remarkably grand; it is fifty feet five, [Note: DRAWING-ROOM.] by twenty-four; and eighteen feet ten inches high. It is hung [...] tapeſtry, the meritorious labor of two aunts of the preſent [...]. The chimney-piece is of an enormous ſize: a quarry of [...] filled with ſhells from Raunce.

MR. WALPOLE had made me impatient for the ſight of the pic [...] of the hero JOHN TALBOT, [Note: JOHN TALBOT EARL OF SHREWSBURY.] firſt earl of Shrewsbury, by inform [...] that ſuch a portrait exiſted in this houſe. I was at firſt [...] [...]grined, by my attendant denying all knowlege of it. [Page 312] [...] m [...]ch ſearch, I diſcovered it in a garret, and re [...] the earl and his [...] counteſs from beneath a load of [...] of the garrets.

THE portraits [...] originals: coarſe, and rudely painted on [...] might be [...] from the artiſts of the period in [...] this later inſcription: ‘ John [...] lord [...] E. of Shrewsbury by Henry VI.’ [...] his hair ſhort and ill-combed, his hands [...] of prayer. He is in armour, but [...] emblazoned with his arms. His [...], is wanted. He was [...] [...]ame put armies to flight. He had [...] in forty ſeveral and dangerous ſkirmiſhes: at [...] aged eighty, at Cha [...]lon: and with him [...] good fortune of the Engliſh during that unhappy [...], dreſſed in the ſortout of the hero's arms [...] bed embraced [...] took off the ſortout painted with his ma [...]ters arms [...] the dead corpſe with it, and burſt into theſe paſſionate expreſſions: ‘Alas! is it you? I pray God par [...] all my miſdoings! I have been your officer of arms [...]orty years or month [...] I ſhould ſurrender them to you*.’

Figure 13. JOHN TALBOT EARL of SHREWSBURY.
Figure 14. MARGARET COUNTESS of SHREWSBURY.

HERE is a portrait of Spencer earl of Northampton (the juſtly-boaſted character and hero of the houſe) repreſented in armour. [Note: SPENCER EARL OF NORTHAMPTON;] His genius was ſo extenſive, that in his youth he at once kept four different tutors in employ, who daily had their reſpective hours for inſtructing him in the different arts they profeſſed. In the civil wars he was the great rival of lord Brooks, whom he drove out of his own county of Warwick; and was a moſt ſucceſsful opponent to the earl of Eſſex. He brought two thouſand of the beſt-diſciplined men in the army to the royal ſtandard at Nottingham. At length fell in Staffordſhire, in March 1743, deſperately fighting; forgetting, as is too frequently the caſe with great minds, the difference between the General and common man.

HIS eldeſt ſon, James earl of Northampton, is in armour, [Note: HIS SON JAMES.] and with a great dog near him. He inherited his father's valour, and was wounded in the battle in which his father was ſlain. In all the following actions he maintained a ſpirit worthy of his name. On the fall of monarchy he lived retired. On the Reſtoration he was loaden with honors, and died in fullneſs of glory at this place, in December 1681.

A PORTRAIT, which I take to be Sir Spencer Compton *, his third brother, [Note: SIR SPENCER COMPTON?] is dreſſed in a green ſilk veſt, a laced turnover, and with long hair. This youth was at the battle of Edgehill, at a time he was not able to graſp a piſtol; yet cried with vexation that he [Page 314] was not permitted to ſhare in the ſame glory and danger with his elder brothers.

THE celebrated Edward Sackville earl of Dorſet is painted in armour. [Note: EDW. SACKVILLE EARL OF DORSET.] His well-known ſpirit, in the duel between him and lord Bruce, would make one imagine that he would have appeared with peculiar luſtre in the field of action, during the civil wars; but fortune f [...]ung him but once into the bloody ſcenes of that period. He fought with diſtinguiſhed bravery at Edgehill, and retook the royal ſtandard, after its bearer, Sir Edward Verney, was ſlain. Might not the weight of the ſanguinary conflict at Tergoſe reſt heavy on his mind, and make him ſhun for the future ſcenes of deſtruction? for HE could do it with unimpeached reputation. Certain it is, that his lordſhip acted chiefly in the cabinet, was a faithful ſervant to his maſter, and a true friend to his country; and ſpent the reſt of his ſervice in earneſt and unremitting endeavours to qualify affairs, and reſtore peace to his country. After the king's death, he never ſtirred out of his houſe; and died in 1652, at his houſe, then called Dorſet-houſe, in Saliſbury-court.

HERE is a ſingular head, [Note: GEO. VILLIERS DUKE OF BUCKINGHUM.] called that of George Villlers duke of Buckingham; bearded, whiſkered, and repreſented as dead.

THE heads of the duke of Somerſet, Protector, Francis firſt earl of Bedford, and Sir Thomas More, and another, the name of which I have forgot, are beautifully painted in ſmall ſize.

THAT favorite of fortune Sir Stephen Fox, [Note: SIR STEPHEN FOX.] is repreſented ſitting, in a long wig and night-gown: a good-looking man. He was the ſon of a private family in Wiltſhire, but raiſed himſelf by the moſt laudable of means, that of merit. After the battle of Worceſter, in which his elder brother was engaged, he fled with [Page 315] him to France, and was entertained by Henry lord Percy, then lord chamberlain to our exiled monarch. To young Fox was committed the whole regulation of the houſehold; "who," as lord Clarendon obſerves, ‘was well qualified with the languages, and all parts of clerkſhip, honeſty, and diſcretion, as was neceſſary for ſuch a truſt; and indeed his great induſtry, modeſty, and prudence, did very much contribute to the bringing the family, which for ſo many years had been under no government, into very good order.’ On the Reſtoration he was made Clerk of the Green Cloth; and on the raiſing of the two regiments, the firſt of the kind ever known, he was appointed paymaſter, and ſoon after paymaſter-general to all the forces in England. In 1679, he was made one of the lords of the Treaſury; and in the ſame year, firſt commiſſioner in the office of maſter of the horſe; and in 1682, had intereſt to get his ſon Charles, then only twenty-three years old, to be appointed ſole paymaſter of the forces, and himſelf, in 1684, ſole commiſſioner for maſter of the horſe. James II. continued to him every kind of favor; yet Sir Stephen made a very eaſy tranſition to the ſucceeding prince, and enjoyed the ſame degree of courtly emolument. James thought he might have expected another return from this creation of the Stuarts: accordingly excepted him in his act of grace, on the intended invaſion of 1692.

SIR Stephen made a noble uſe of the gifts of fortune: he rebuilt the church of Early, his native place; built an hoſpital there for ſix poor men, and as many poor women; erected a chapel there, and handſome lodgings for the chaplain, and endowed it with £188 a year: he founded in the ſame place a charity-ſchool; he built the chancel of a church in the north of [Page 316] Wiltſhire, which the rector was unable to do. He alſo built the church of Culford in Suffolk, and pewed the cathedral of Saliſbury: but his greateſt act was the founding of Chelſea hoſpital, which he firſt projected, and contributed thirteen thouſand pounds towards the carrying on; alleging, that he could not bear to ſee the common ſoldiers, who had ſpent their ſtrength in our ſervice, beg at our doors *.

HE married his ſecond wife in 1703, when he was ſeventy-ſix years of age, and had by her two ſons: Stephen, late earl of Ilcheſter; and Henry, late lord Holland. His happineſs continued to his laſt moment; for he died, without experiencing the uſual infirmities of eighty-nine, in October 1716.

THE manor of Caſtle Aſhby was called in the Doomſday-book, [Note: MANOR OF CASTLE ASHBY.] Aſebi: it was afterwards called Aſhby David, from David de Eſſeby, who was lord of it in the time of Henry III. It fell afterwards to Walter de Langton, biſhop of Lichfield; who, in 1305, got leave to fortify it; from which it got the name of Caſtle Aſhby. It afterwards paſſed through ſeveral owners. The Greys, lords of Ruthin and earls of Kent, poſſeſſed it for a long time, till Richard, who died in 1503, parted with it to lord Huſſey; who alienated it, in the time of Henry VIII. to Sir William Compton, of Compton Vinyate, in Warwickſhire, anceſtor of the preſent noble poſſeſſor.

THE grounds have been laid out by Mr. Brown, and the church, dedicated to St. Nicholas, ſtands in them, at a ſmall diſtance from the houſe. I took horſe and rode through the park, [Note: EASTON MAUDUIT.] and, after a mile and a half, reached Eaſton Mauduit, one of the ſeats of the earls of Suſſex; a large but low old houſe, with a quadrangle [Page 317] in the middle. This place probably took the addition of Mauduit from ſome antient owner. Sir Chriſtopher Yelverton, third ſon of a very antient family in Norfolk, was the firſt of the name who ſettled at this place.

THE portraits in this houſe are numerous. In the hall is a full-length of Henry, [Note: PORTRAITS.] ſeventh earl of Kent, of the name of Grey, [Note: HENRY, SEVENTH EARL OF KENT.] dreſſed in black, with a turnover; and another of his lady, Elizabeth, ſecond daughter and co-heir of Gilbert, ſeventh earl of Shrewſbury. She is alſo in black, with a great black aigret, light hair, bare neck, and ruff.

HER father, in white, with a black cloak, ruff, and George. He died in 1616. A miſnamed portrait, called his great anceſtor, the firſt earl of Shrewſbury, is ſhewn here. It ſeems to be of ſome nobleman of the time of Edward VI. dreſſed in black, with a ſword, the George, and the garter about his leg.

ON the ſtairs is an excellent painting of an old poultry-woman.

IN the dining-room is a half-length of Sir Chriſtopher Yelverton, [Note: SIR CHRISTOPHER YELVERTON.] with a ruff, and in robes, as one of the juſtices of the King's Bench. He diſtinguiſhed himſelf in the profeſſion of the law in the reign of queen Elizabeth, was appointed queen's ſerjeant, and was choſen ſpeaker of the Houſe of Commons in 1597. His ſpeech of excuſe is ſingular, and hiſtorical of himſelf*. His prayer (for in thoſe days it was uſual for the ſpeaker to compoſe one, and read it every morning during the ſeſſions) ran in a ſtrong vein of good ſenſe and piety. He was the purchaſer of this [Page 318] eſtate. Died here in 1607, and was buried in the adjacent church.

His ſon, [Note: SIR HENRY YELVERTON.] Sir Henry, appears in the ſame habit with the father. The date is 1626, aet. 60. He proved as diſtinguiſhed a lawyer as his father, but was leſs fortunate, in falling on more dangerous times. He owed his riſe to the profligate favorite Ker earl of Somerſet. On the diſgrace of his patron, Sir Henry had gratitude enough to refuſe to plead againſt him*, notwithſtanding his office as ſolicitor-general might have been a plea for doing it. When he was attorney-general, he fell under the diſpleaſure of the court: — He was charged by the commons with making out the patents for the monopolies, ſo juſtly complained of in that reign. In his defence he ſuffered to eſcape ſome indiſcreet truths, which were interpreted as if his delinquency was not diſagreeable to the king and the then favorite Buckingham. The rage of the court was directed againſt him: he was fined in ten thouſand marks to the king, and five thouſand to Buckingham; who inſtantly remitted the laſt. Perhaps the favorite might fear him; it having been ſaid, that one cauſe of his diſgrace was the refuſal of making out patents to the degree which the duke deſired, whoſe brother was deeply concerned in this plunder of the public. A mean letter to Buckingham, and a ſubmiſſion in the ſtar-chamber, acknowleging errors of negligence, ignorance, and miſpriſion, reſtored him to favor. In the following reign he was made one of the judges of the Common Pleas, and died in January 1630.

[Page 319] HIS grandſon, Sir Henry Yelverton, Baronet, [Note: HIS SON HENRY.] is dreſſed in a brown mantle and large wig. He was a worthy character, with a moſt religious turn; a ſtrenuous defender of Chriſtianity in general, and of the church of England in particular, as appears by his writings in behalf of both.

HIS lady Suſanna, daughter and ſole heireſs of Charles Longueville lord Grey of Ruthin; which title devolved to her, and afterwards to her ſon Charles. She is very beautiful, and repreſented by Sir Peter Lely with her head reclining on her hand.

Anne, daughter to the ſecond Sir Chriſtopher *, is drawn by the ſame painter, in yellow, leaning on an urn. She was firſt married to Robert earl of Mancheſter, and afterwards to Charles earl of Halifax.

A Lady Bulkeley.

A HEAD of Frances viſcounteſs Hatton, daughter to the laſt Sir Henry Yelverton.

BARBARA, daughter to Sir Thomas Slingſby, ſecond wife to Thomas earl of Pembroke, by Dahl.

MRS. Lawſon, a celebrated beauty of her time, bare-necked, in a looſe habit claſped before, with a ſort of veil flung over her head.

SIR John Talbot, a head, with a big wig and armour.

THE church is at a ſmall diſtance from the houſe: [Note: CHURCH.] is now in the gift of Chriſt-church, Oxford; but formerly belonged to the abbey of Lavendan, Buckinghamſhire. Within are very expenſive monuments. The firſt is in memory of Sir Chriſtopher Yelverton, [Note: TOMES.] who died in 1607, aged ſeventy-ſix; and his lady Margaret, daughter of Thomas Cateſby of Ecton and Whiſton, in this county.

[Page 320] Their figures are placed recumbent, and painted: he in his robes, and ſquare cap, and an artichoke at his feet; ſhe, in a black jacket and petticoat, and great diſtended hood. At her feet a cat, alluſive to her name.

OVER them are two arched canopies of veined marble, ſupported by ſix ſquare pillars of ſhell-ſtone. On one ſide of the tomb are eight females; on the other, two male figures, and a little girl.

THE other monument is of his ſon Sir Henry. His figure is placed in his robes: and on one ſide his lady Anne, daughter of Sir William Twiſden of Rawdon-hall, in Kent, lies by him, wrapped in a black cloak from head to feet. Round her neck is a ruff: in one hand an open book. Above them is a vaſt canopy, with various ſtatues on the top. This is ſupported on each ſide by two full-length figures of almſmen, in black gowns and hoods, with great white beards; the arch reſting on their heads. This probably alludes to ſome charitable foundation with which I am unacquainted. In front, beneath Sir Henry, is an altar, at which kneel two men in armour, and two in cloaks, and five women. It does not appear that either Sir Chriſtopher or Sir Henry left a number of children equal to thoſe expreſſed on their reſpective tombs.

IN my return I ſaw at Little Billings the poor remains of the manſion of the great family of the Longvilles. [Note: LITTLE BILLINGS.] John de Lungville was declared lord of the place in 1315. This was he who founded the Auguſtines in Northampton. It continued in the name till the time of queen Elizabeth, or James I. when that ſucceſſion expired in the perſon of Sir Edward Longeville.

NOT far from hence I viſited Clifford's Hill, in the pariſh of Houghton Parva, a vaſt artificial mount, having once on it a [Page 321] ſpecula, or watch-tower. The coins found in and near it, prove it to have been the work of the Romans. Before the river Nen was diverted, by the building of Billings Bridge, the channel ran under this mount; which it is ſuppoſed to have guarded*.

REACH Northampton, and, after a ſhort ſtay, paſs over the river into the ſuburbs, called the South Quarters, and into the pariſh of Hardingſtone. On each ſide is a fine range of meadows; thoſe on the left are greatly enlivened by the beautiful plantations and improvements of the Honorable Edward Bouverie, whoſe houſe ſtands on the ſite of the Abbey de Pratis, or de la Prè; a houſe of Cluniac nuns, [Note: DE LA PRÈ ABBEY.] founded by Simon de St. Liz the younger, earl of Northampton . It had in it ten nuns at the time of the diſſolution. The laſt abbeſs, Clementina Stokes, governed it thirty years; obtained the king's charter for the continuance of her convent; but, fearing to incur the diſpleaſure of the tyrant, reſigned it into the hands of Doctor London, the king's commiſſioner, and got from him the character of a gudde agyd woman; of her howſe being in a gudde ſtate; and, what was more ſubſtantial, a penſion of forty pounds a year.

BETWEEN this place and the town, in 1460, encamped Henry VI. and his inſolent nobility, immediately before the bloody battle of Northampton. The king (or rather queen) depending on the ſtrength of their entrenchments and warlike engines, returned a haughty anſwer to the humble propoſals ſent by the earls of March and Warwick. [Note: BATTLE OF NORTHAMPTON.] Theſe ſpirited commanders led [Page 322] their troops inſtantly to the attack, and forced the camp, favored by the treachery of Edmund lord Grey of Ruthen; who, on ſome diſguſt, changed ſides, and aſſiſted the enemy in forcing their way into the works. "Ten thouſand talle Engliſhmen and their "king," ſays Halle *, "were taken, and numbers ſlain or drowned "in the river;" for the fight was carried on with the obſtinacy uſual in civil diſſenſion. Humphrey duke of Buckingham, John earl of Shrewſbury, John viſcount Beaumont, Thomas lord Egremont, and Sir Thomas Lucy, were among thoſe who fell. Multitudes of my countrymen alſo periſhed on that day*. The ſlain were buried either in the church of this convent, or in the hoſpital of St. John.

ON the road-ſide, [Note: QUEEN'S CROSS.] on an aſcent near this place, ſtands one of the pledges of affection borne by Edward I. to his beloved Eleanor; who cauſed a croſs to be erected on the ſpot whereſoever her body reſted, in its way from Hareby in Lincolnſhire, where ſhe died, in 1290, to Weſtminſter, the place of her interment. It is kept in excellent repair: is of an octagonal form, and ſtands on a baſe of ſeven ſteps. Coats of arms and an open book adorn the lower compartments. Above, in ſix gothic niches, are as many female figures, crowned. Above them, are four modern dials, facing the four cardinal points; and above thoſe is the croſs.

AROUND this ſpot are frequently found Roman coins and medals; from which it is conjectured, that this might have been the ſite of Eltavon, [Note: ELTAVON.] or Eltabon (from the Britiſh Ael, a brow, and [Page 323] Avon, a river); and is ſuppoſed to have been the Eltanori, or Eltavori, of the geographer of Ravenna *. The dry and elevated ſituation, and its vicinity to a river, makes it very probable that this was a Roman ſtation, at left a ſummer camp.

NEAR this place, on the ſummit of the hill called Hunſborough, [Note: HUNSBOROUGH.] are ſome antient works, of a circular form; i. e. conforming to the ſhape of it; conſiſting of a foſs and double rampart, with a ſingle entrance. Mr. Morton attributes this to the Danes, and imagines it to have been a ſummer-camp of one of the plundering parties which infeſted the kingdom of Mercia about the year 921. Another was raiſed, about the ſame time, at Temsford, in the county of Bedford, for the ſame purpoſe. This has very much the appearance of a Britiſh poſt; but as there is great ſimilitude between the early fortifications of the northern nations, I will not controvert the opinion of that ingenious author; yet I have probability on my ſide, as he admits that the Danes had poſſeſſion of Hamtune, i. e. Northampton, in 917. I think they would ſcarcely trouble themſelves with raiſing theſe works ſo near their former quarters, which, for any thing that appears, was as open to them in 921, as in the former year.

ABOUT five miles from Queen's Croſs I turned a little out of my road, to ſee Horton church, [Note: HORTON CHURCH.] remarkable for a fine monument of William lord Parr, uncle, to Catherine, the laſt queen to Henry VIII. His lordſhip is repreſented in alabaſter, recumbent, [Note: WILLIAM LORD PARR.] with his lady, Mary Saluſbury, by his ſide; in right of whom he [Page 324] became maſter of this manor. He is dreſſed in armour, with a collar of SS, and a roſe at the end. His head reſts on a helmet, whoſe creſt is a hand holding a ſtag's horn. His upper lip is bare, but his beard is enormous, regularly curled in two rows. He was called to the Houſe of Peers on this ſecond marriage of his niece, was appointed her chamberlain, and, during the queen's regency, on the king's expedition to France in 1544, had the reſpect ſhewn him to be named as a council to her majeſty, occaſionally to be called in*. He died in 1548; left four daughters, the eldeſt of whom conveyed, by marriage with Sir Ralph Lane, the eſtate into his family.

ON the floor are the figures of Roger Saluſbury, between his two wives, in braſs. He died in 1482, firſt owner, of his name, of this eſtate; whoſe grandaughter became miſtreſs of it on the death of her father William.

THE Lanes kept it for ſome generations. On the death of Sir William, it was found to be held of Sir Richard Chetwood, as of his manor of Woodhall, by the ſervice of one knight's ſee, ſuit of court, and the annual payment of 6s. towards the guard of Rockingham caſtle. The eſtate paſſed from the Lanes (I believe by purchaſe) to Sir Henry Mountague, firſt earl of Mancheſter, and, by deſcent, fell to the earl of Halifax; and is now poſſeſſed by lord Hinchinbroke, in right of his lady, daughter and heireſs of the laſt earl.

THE houſe is in a very unfiniſhed ſtate; part modern, part antient and embattled.

Figure 15. GOTHURST.

[Page 325] FROM the Queen's Croſs to this place the country is uneven, unwatered, and far from pleaſant. It is now, in general, incloſed; but the hedges are young, and, till within theſe few years, quite a novelty.

NEAR the fifty-eight mile-ſtone enter the county of BUCKINGHAM. Here the country improves. After paſſing Stoke Goldington, [Note: STOKE GOLDINGTON.] a ſmall village, a beautiful vale opens on the left, watered by the Ouze, running through rich meadows, [Note: THE OUZE.] and embelliſhed with the ſpire of Oulney church. This river riſes near Syſam in Northamptonſhire, and, after watering this country, becomes navigable above Bedford, by means of locks; runs by Huntingdon; and, after creeping almoſt undiſtinguiſhed amidſt the canals of the fenny tracts, falls into the ſea at Lynn Regis. The name is probably derived from the Britiſh, perhaps ſignifying a river*; being, in common with Avon, the name of numbers of Britiſh ſtreams.

ABOUT half a mile from its banks, on a riſing ground on the right, ſtands Gothurſt, antiently Gaythurſt; [Note: GOTHURST.] whoſe venerable form has not been injured by inconſiſtent alterations. It was begun in the forty-third of queen Elizabeth, and was greatly improved, a few years after, by William Mulſho, Eſquire. The windows are glazed with propriety: only part of the back-front is modernized. The lands are very finely dreſſed, and ſwell into extenſive lawns. One before the houſe conſiſts of a hundred and twenty-eight [Page 326] acres; and on the ſides are others of great extent. The woods are vaſt, and cut into walks extenſive and pleaſing. Several pretty pieces of water, the view of the Ouze and its verdant meadows, and the old reſpectable houſe of Tyringham, with its church, on the oppoſite ſide, are no ſmall embelliſhments to the place.

THIS manor, at the time of the compilation of the Doomſday-book, was held by Robert de Nodavirs, or de Nouers, under Odo biſhop of Baieux, earl of Kent, and half-brother to the Conqueror. [Note: THE DE NOUERS.] The De Nouers became poſſeſſed of it in their own right in the time of Henry II; perhaps earlier*: but the firſt I meet with is Radulphus, and his ſon Almaric, who lived in 1252, the thirty-ſeventh of Henry III. It continued in that family till 1408, the tenth of Henry IV. when it became the property of Robert Nevyll, deſcended from Hugo de Nevyll, who had lands in Eſſex in 1363, or the thirty-fifth of Edward III. Robert Nevyll poſſeſſed himſelf of Gothurſt, by marrying Joanna, ſiſter and ſole heir to the laſt Almaric de Nouers; his two other ſiſters, Agnes and Gracia, having preferred a monaſtic life.

THE Nevylls remained owners of it till the reign of Henry VIII. when Maria, [Note: NEVYLLS.] only daughter of Michael Nevyll, on the death of her two brothers; became poſſeſſed of it; and ſhe beſtowed it, with her perſon, [Note: MULSHOS.] on Thomas Mulſho of Thingdon, in the county of Northampton , a reſpectable family. I find ſheriffs of the name, as early as the time of Richard II; and one of that houſe governor of Calais in the reign of Henry VI. But the firſt mention of the name is in 1370, when lived John Mulſho of Goddington.

[Page 327] Gothurſt continued with the Mulſhos till the beginning of the reign of James I; when Maria, daughter and ſole heireſs to William (who died in 1601) reſigned herſelf and great fortune to Sir Everard Digby *, one of the handſomeſt and completeſt gentlemen of his time: [Note: DIGBYS.] but

Eumenides tenuere faces de funere raptas:
Eumenides ſtravere torum.
She had not been married three years, before her huſband was ſnatched from her by an ignominious and merited death, for his deep concern in the plot, which, thanks to the charity of the times, is execrated by each religion. It is very probable, that a mind ſo tinctured with bigotry as his was, ſoon devoted itſelf to the moſt deſperate reſolutions, for the reſtoration of the antient church. He foreſaw the certain conſequences of ill ſucceſs, and, preparing againſt the event, took every method to preſerve his infant ſon from ſuffering from the fault of the father. Before he committed any acts of treaſon, he ſecured to his heirs his eſtates, in ſuch a manner as to put it out of the power of the crown to profit by their confiſcation.

THIS illuſtrious line was the chief of the Digby family; the peers of that name ſpringing from younger branches. The origin is Saxon. The firſt, of whom notice is taken, is Aelmar, who had lands at Tilton in Leiceſterſhire, in 1086, the twentieth of William the Conqueror. They afterwards took the name of Digby, from a place in Lincolnſhire; and became owners of Stokedry in Rutlandſhire [Page 328] (which, till the acquiſition of Gothurſt, was their uſual reſidence) by the marriage of Everard Digby, Eſquire, in the reign of king Henry VI. with Agnes, daughter of Francis Clare of Wyſſenden and Stokedry, Eſquire. This gentleman, with three of his ſons, fell in the bloody field at Towton, fighting in the cauſe of the houſe of Lancaſter *.

MOST of the particulars relative to this great family, [Note: DIGBY PEDIGREE.] I owe to the friendſhip of my worthy neighbor Watkin Williams, Eſquire, who favored me with the uſe of the famous genealogy of the Digbys of Tilton; a book compiled by the direction of Sir Kenelm in 1634, at the expence of twelve hundred pounds. This tradition, is very credible, to any who have ſeen the book: a large folio, conſiſting of five hundred and eighty-nine vellum leaves; the firſt hundred and ſixty-five ornamented with the coats of arms of the family and its allies, and of all the tombs of the Digbys then extant, illuminated in the richeſt and moſt exquiſite manner. The reſt of the book is compoſed of grants, wills, and variety of other pieces, ſerving to illuſtrate the hiſtory of the family; drawn from the moſt authentic records, as the title ſets forth. Several of the wills are curious proofs of the ſimplicity of the manners of the times; and another, of the magnificence, ſuperſtition, and vanity of our greater anceſtors. One of the firſt kind I ſhall give here; the other, being of great length, is reſerved for the Appendix.

1.2.1.

In the name of God, [Note: CURIOU [...] WILL.] Amen. The XVI day of the moneth of January, the yere of our Lord God a thouſand fyve hundred [Page 329] and VIIIth, I Everode Dygby of Stoke dry, in the countie of Rutland, of the dioceſe of Lincoln, ſeke in body and hole in mynde, make my teſtament and laſt will in this fourme following. Fyrſt, I bequeth my ſoul to God Allmyghty, our bleſſed lady ſeynt Mary, and all the ſeynts of heven. My body to be buryed in the pariſhe churche of Seynt Pet at Tylton, before the ymage of the bleſſed Trinitie, at o'lady autther. Itm. I bequeth to reparacon of the ſaid church, for my buryall ther, vi s. viij d. Item. I bequeth to the ſaid church a webe of land; whiche the churhmaſters of the ſaid churche have in their kepyng. Item. I bequeth to the high aiot. of the pariſh church of Stokedry, for tythes by me forgotten, ij s. Itm. I bequeth to the reparacons of the ſaid churche of Stokedry vi s. viij d. Itm. I biqueth to the cathedrall churche of Linc, ij s. Itm. I biqueth to John Dygby, my ſon, all my rents, lands, and tenementes whiche I have prchaſed, by dede or by copyhold, in the townes and fields of Vipinghm, Preſton, Pyſbroke, and Elynden, to have and to hold, to hym and his aſſigneys, duryng the terme of his lyff; and aftr his deceaſe, I will that the ſaid rentes, londes, and tenementes, ſhall remayne to Everod Dygby, my eldeſt ſonne, and to his heyres and aſſignes for ever. Item. I biqueth to Alice, my daughter, all my rentes, landes, and tenementes, wth all prouſetts and comodities to them belongyng, whiche I have prchaſed, by dede or by copy, in the townes and feldes of Hareborow, Bowden, and Foxton, to have and to hold to hyr, hyr heyres and aſſigneyes for ever. Itm. I biqueth to the foreſaid John Dygby, my ſon, ij geldyngs, iij maires for his ploughe, with all barnes and other thynges to it belongyng, and alſo a pair of cart wheles unſhode. Itm. I biqueth to my forſaid doughter Alice, a fetherbed, a matras, [Page 330] a bolſter of fethures, with pillowes, blanketts, ſhetys, coverletts, and covyng. with all the hangyng of rede ſay pertenyng to the bed whiche I now ly in. Itm. I biqueth to Elyn, my dowght. lxxx l. of gode and lawfull money, to be payed to hir by my ſone Everode, within the ſpace of iij yeres next following aftr my deceaſe, if ſhe within that tyme be maryed; and if ſhe be not maried within iij yeres next after my deceaſe, then I will that my ſone Everad ſhall delyv. hir 10 l. in gode money, and the reſidue of the lxxx l. I will be put into ſtock, and be occupyed by my ſaid ſonne Everad to hir uſe and proufitt, untill the tyme that ſhe be maryed, and then to be delyvered to hir: and if ſhe deceaſe before that ſhe be maryed, then I will that the ſaid reſidew of lxxx l. beſids the x l. paid to her, be gyven and payed to the fynding of a preſte to ſyng for my ſoul, as long as the money will extend to, after the diſcrcion of my executo. Itm. I biqueth to my ſaid dought. Elyn, a fetherbed, a matras, a ſpaiver wt hangynge, blankette, ſhetis, and coverlitts, and other things to it belongyng, as it lies in the chamber called the Norcery, within my place of Stoke bifor ſaid. Itm. I bequeth to Everad my ſone, and Alice my daughter, iiij pair of my beſt and fineſt ſhetis, to be devided equallie bitwixt them. Itm. I biqueth to my ſaid daughter Elyn, the next beſt pair of ſhetis that I have, and other v pair of fflexyn ſhetys, and ij pair of hardyn ſhetis. Itm. I bequeth to my daughter Alice aforſaid, x other pair of flexyn ſhetis, and ii pair of harden ſhetis. Itm. I bequeth to my daughter Kateryn, nunne at Sempinghm. xx s. in money, and a pair of flexyn ſhete, and a white ſparnar. Itm. I bequeth to Darnegold, my daughter, ij kyne and 12 ewes. Itm. I bequeth to my ſonne [Page 331] Everad Dygby, my gretteſt bras pot, to be kept for a ſtandard of that hows, and the next bras pott and two little bras pottes, and halfe a garnyſh of pewter veſſell, with all other ledy fattys, tubbys, and bolles wtin my hows, and my gretteſt bras pane, wt two other leſſer pannes: and all other my braſs pottes, panes, and pewt. veſſel, I will be devided betwene John Dygby my ſonne, and Alice and Elyn my doughters. Itm. I biqueth to my ſaid ſonne Everod, a plough, wt all harnes pertenyng to it, and ſix of my plough horſes, for his ſaid plough, and my waynes, and viij of my beſt oxen, wt all thinges pertenyng to the ſame waynes, and ſix of my beſt keyn, and lx of my beſt ſhepe. Itm. I will that the reſidew of all my ſhepe, keyn, calves, and oxen, not by me biqueſted, divided bitwen John Dygby my ſonne, and Alice and Elyn my forſaid doughters, equally. Itm. I biqueth to Rowland of Lee, my ſuſters ſonne, ij keyn and a young black ſter, and vj ewes. Itm. I bequeth to Everard Aſhby, my godſon, iiij of my beſt calves, which be goyng in Tylton feilds. Itm. I biqueth to Margaret Kynton, my hunte, a matras, a gode coverlitt, a bras pott, a pair of flexyn ſhete, a kow, and vj ewes, and xiij s. iiij d. in money, for hir wages. Itm. I biqueth to Elyn Hall, my hunte, at Tylton, a kow and xl s. in money. Itm. I biqueth to the pariſhe church of Skevyngton vj s. viij d. Itm. To the pariſhe churche of Vpinghm. x s. Itm. To the pariſhe churche of Lidington iij s. iiij d. Itm. To the abbot of Wolſton vj s. viij d. and every chalon. of his hous viij d. if they be at my buriall. Itm. I gyve to the couent there, to have placebo and dirige ſong in their church for my ſoul, x s. Itm. I biqueth to Sir Robert Kyrkby, chalon. ther, to py. for my ſoul, xx s. Itm. I will that my [Page 332] executo. doe fynde an able preſt, to ſyng for my ſoull, and the ſoulles of my father and mother, and all Criſten ſoules, by the ſpace of iij yere next following after my deceaſe, in pariſhe church of Tylton. The reſidue of all my rentes, londes, and tenementes, dettes, and all other my godes, moveable and unmoveable, I give and biqueth them to Everad Dygby, my eldiſt ſonne and myn heyre, whom I ordeyne and make my ſole executor, to pay therwith my dette, and to diſpoſe the reſidew thereof act his diſcretion, [Note: Of Daliſon. ] for the helth of my ſoulle and my friendes. Thyes beryng witneſs, [Note: Of Skeffington. ] Mr. Thomas Dalyſon, pſon. of Stoke dry, William Skevyngton, Everod Darby, and John Dalyſon, [Note: Of Darby. ] gentilmen, Sir Robart Kyrkby, chalon. of Wolſton, [Note: Of Kirkby. ] and Sir Thomas Northmpton, chalon. of Laund, [Note: Of Northampton. ] of the diociſe of Lincoln above reherſed.

E. Watſon.

Tenore putm. nos Willmuſ. permiſſione divinae Cant' Archiepus totius Anglie primus et Aplice ſedis legtus notum ſacimus univerſis quod duodecimo die mentis Februarij anno Dm. millimo quingenteſimo octavo, apud Lamehith probatum fuit coram nobis ac p. nos approbatur et inſinuatur teſtm. Everardi Dygby defuncti putib. annexu. trents. dum vixit & mortis ſue tempore bona in diverſis dioc nre. Cant, provinc. cujus pro textu ipſius teſtamenti approbatio et inſinuatio ac adminiſtrationis bonorum & debitorum conceſſio nec non compoti calculi ſive rationarii adminiſtrationis hinor. auditio finaliſq. liberatio ſive dimiſſio ab eadm. nos ſolum et inſolidum et non ad alium nobis inferiorem cudicem de nre prerogativa et cenſuetudine nris ac ecclie. pre xpi. tant hactenus quiete pacifice et inculle in hac pte. uſitat. et obſuat. ltimeq. preſcript dmonſtrat. notorie pertinere [Page 333] comiſſaq. ſuit admiſtratio om. et ſingulor. bonor. et debitor: dri. defuncti Everardo Dygbi executori in timor. teſtamento noint. de bene et fidelit. admiſtrando eadm. ac de pleno et fideli inuentario omni. &c. ſinglor. bono. et debitoru. timoi. conficiend. et nobis citra feſtid. annunciationis beate Marie Virginis px. futur. exhibendo, nec non de plano et vero compoto calculo ſive ratiotino nobis aut ſucceſſoribus nris. in ea pte. redend. ad fta. dei eungelia. in rat dat. die mends, anno Dni. et loco predicto et nre. trans anno ſexto.

Exam. a. concard. recordia J. Hen. Lilly, Rouge Roſe.

Everard Digby made his will anno 1508.

Everard Digby, eldeſt ſon and heir.

John Digby.

Alice.

Ellen.

Katharine, a nun at Sempringham.

Darnegold.

I NOW return to the period when the family emerged from its misfortune; and in the perſon of Sir Kenelm, the ſon of the laſt Sir Evarard, was reſtored to its former honor, by the uncommon merits of the ſucceſſor. He married Venetia, daughter of Sir Edward Stanley of Tongue Caſtle, Shropſhire, Knight of the Bath. His eldeſt ſon, Kenelm, was ſlain in 1648, in the civil wars, at St. Neots: his ſecond ſon, John, ſucceeded to the eſtate, and ſurvived [Page 334] his father many years. He left by his wife Margaret, daughter of Sir Edward Longueville of Wolverton, in this county, Baronet, two daughters; the eldeſt, Margaret Maria, married Sir John Conway of Boddruddan, in Flintſhire; the younger, Charlotta, married Richard Moſtyn of Penbedw, in the ſame county, Eſquire. Theſe two gentlemen, in 1704, ſold this manor, with Stoke Goldington, and the advowſon of both the churches, to George Wright, Eſquire, ſon of the lord keeper, Sir Nathan Wright; in whoſe poſterity it ſtill remains. By the preceding owners, the reliques of Sir Kenelm's collection came into my country; but the leaving behind the two beautiful buſts of lady Venetia, impreſs no favorable idea of their taſte.

SOME portraits, [Note: PORTRAITS.] belonging to the former poſſeſſors, ſtill keep a place in the houſe. In the parlour is a full-length of old Mr. Digby, [Note: OLD MR. DIGBY.] father to the unhappy Sir Everard. He is repreſented in a cloſe black dreſs, a laced turnover ruff, and with lace at his wriſt: his hair black, his beard round, with one hand on his ſword, the other

HIS lady, [Note: HIS LADY.] Mary daughter of Francis Neile, Eſquire, of Preſtwold, and Keythorp, in Leiceſterſhire, and widow to the Staffordſhire antiquary, Sampſon Erdeſwik. Her dreſs is black, pinked with red; has a high fore-top adorned with jewels, a thin upright ruff, round kerchief, a farthingale, with gloves in her hand.

THEIR ſon, [Note: SIR EVERARD.] the victim to bigotry, is here at full-length, in a black mantle and veſt, the ſleeves ſlaſhed, and pinked with white, large turnover, and turn-ups at his wriſts: one hand holds his gloves; the other is gracefully folded in his mantle.

A REMARKABLE portrait, [Note: SIR KENELM.] of a young man of large ſize, in a quilled ruff, white jacket, black cloak, purple hoſe, flowered [Page 335] belt, a bonnet with a white feather in it, flowered belt, with one hand on his ſword. Above him, in a tablet, is repreſented a lady, in a moſt ſupplicatory attitude, with a lute in one hand, and a purſe in the other, offering it to him. He ſtands by her, with averted look, one hand on his breaſt, and with an air which ſhews his rejection of her addreſſes, and horror at the infamy of mercenary love; and as if uttering to her the words inſcribed near to him, his majora *.

THIS is a portrait of the famous Sir Kenelm, in his youthful days; that prodigy of learning, credulity, valour, and romance, whoſe merits, although mixed with many foibles, entirely obliterated every attention to the memory of his father's infamy. The circumſtance of the lady painted along with him, is a ſtrong confirmation of the truth of the ſtory related by Lloyd, that an Italian prince, who was childleſs, earneſtly wiſhed that his princeſs might become a mother by Sir Kenelm, whom he eſteemed as a juſt model of perfection. It is probable that the princeſs would not have diſobeyed the commands of her lord: but whether the painting alludes to our knight's cruelty on this occaſion, or whether it might not deſcribe the adventure of the Spaniſh lady, recorded in an elegant old ballad, I will not pretend to determine.

IN the long room above ſtairs, [Note: LADY VENETIA.] is the picture of his beloved wife Venetia Anaſtatia Stanley, in a Roman habit, with curled locks. In one hand is a ſerpent; the other is on a pair of white doves.

[Page 336] She is painted at Windſor in the ſame emblematic manner, but in a different dreſs, and with accompaniments explanatory of the emblems. The doves ſhew her innocency; the ſerpent, which ſhe handles with impunity, ſhews her triumph over the envenomed tongues of the times. We know not the particulars of the ſtory. Lord Clarendon muſt allude to her exculpation of the charge, whatſoever it was, when he mentions her as ‘a lady of an extraordinary beauty, of as extraordinary ſame*.’ In the ſame picture is a genius about to place a wreath on her head. Beneath her is a Cupid, proſtrate: and behind him is Calumny, with two faces, flung down and bound; a beautiful compliment on her victory over Malevolence. Her hair in this picture is light, and differs in color from that in the other. I have heard, from a deſcendant of her's, that ſhe affected different hair-dreſſes, and different-colored eye-brows, to ſee which beſt became her.

Figure 1. BUST of LADY VENETIA DIGBY.

BOTH the pictures are the performances of Vandyck. In this at Gothurſt are two of her ſons, of a boyiſh age, and in the dreſs of the times.

HERE are, beſides, two moſt beautiful buſts of the ſame lady, [Note: BUSTS OF LADY VENETIA.] in braſs; whether by Le Soeur or Fanelli, I am not certain. One is in the dreſs of the times: an elegant laced handkerchief falls over her ſhoulders, leaving her neck bare. Her hair is curled, braided, twiſted, and formed on the hind part of her head into a circle; beneath which fall elegant locks. On this buſt is inſcribed, ‘ Uxorem vivam amare voluptas, defunctam, religio.

THE other is a l'antique. The head is dreſſed in the ſame manner, only bound in a fillet: the drapery covers her breaſt; but ſo artificially, as not to deſtroy the elegancy of the form.

I KNOW of no perſons who are painted in greater variety of forms and places, than this illuſtrious pair: poſſibly becauſe they were the fineſt ſubjects of the times. Mr. Walpole is in poſſeſſion of ſeveral moſt exquiſite miniatures of the lady, by Oliver, bought from the heirs of Boddrudan and Pembedw, at a very high price. The moſt valuable is one in a gold caſe, where ſhe is painted in company with her huſband. There is another, ſaid to be painted after ſhe was dead; and four others, in water-colors.

THE ſame gentleman is in poſſeſſion of a beautiful miniature [Page 338] of her mother, lady Lucy Percy, purchaſed at the ſame time. She is dreſſed like a citizen's wife, and with dark hair.

AMONG other portraits, [Note: LORD KEEPER WRIGHT.] is a full-length of the lord keeper, Sir Nathan Wright, in his robes, and a head of Sir Joſeph Jekyll, with a long wig and robes. The firſt received his appointment in the year 1700, unfortunately for him, as ſucceſſor to lord Somers; whoſe precipitate diſmiſſion, in favor of a Tory, hardly allowed time for reflection on the impropriety of the choice. Sir Nathan kept his place till the year 1703, when he was diſmiſſed, not without diſgrace; more through defect of ability than want of integrity: but contemned by both parties.

SIR Joſeph was a very different character: a ſtaunch Whig, and a man of great abilities and worth. He died Maſter of the Rolls, in 1738. His wig was probably none of the beſt, if we are to truſt theſe complimentary lines of Pope *:

A horſe-laugh, if you pleaſe, on honeſty;
A joke on Jekyll, or ſome odd old Whig,
Who never chang'd his principle, or wig.

THE church is at a little diſtance from the houſe; [Note: CHURCH.] is new, and very neat, having been rebuilt, in purſuance of the will of George Wright, Eſquire, ſon of the keeper. The figures of father and ſon face you as you enter the church: the firſt in his robes; the other in a plain gown: both furniſhed with enormous Parian perriwigs.

In the old church was a grave-ſtone, lying in the chancel, ſuppoſed [Page 339] to have been laid over John de Nouers, who lived in the time of Edward III. The inſcription was in French *.

JO: DE: NOVERS: GIST ICI DIEV: DE: S'ALME: EIT: MERCI: AMEN.

FROM Gothurſt I croſſed the Ouze, to the reſpectable old houſe of Tyringham, [Note: TYRINGHAM.] (once the ſeat of a family of the ſame name) which ſtands very high in point of antiquity. Giffard de Tyringham gave the church of Tyringham to the priory of Tickford, near Newport Pagnel, in 1187. Sir Roger was one of the knights who attended Edward I. into Scotland; and Roger, his ſon, was ſheriff of this county as early as the fifteenth of Richard II. A Sir John Tyringham had the honor of loſing his head in the cauſe of Henry VI; being, with ſeveral others, put to death unheard, in 1461, for the murder of the duke of York; that is, for being preſent at the battle of Wakefield, where that prince fell by ſome unknown hand. It continued in this antient family till 1685, when, on the death of Sir William Tyringham, it devolved to John, ſon of Edward Backwell, alderman of London, who had married his only daughter.

THE houſe has been neglected for ſome time, but not wholly unfurniſhed. Several family-portraits ſtill continue there: ſuch as a head of lady Tyringham, [Note: PORTRAITS.] in a yellow laced cap and ruff, of [Page 340] the ſame kind with that in which the famous Mrs. Turner went to be hanged, for her concern in Overbury's murder.

A VERY curious picture, full-length, of an aged lady, in a great quilled ruff and gauze cap, diſtended behind, with an enormous gauze veil falling to the ground; a black gown ſpotted with white; jewels, in form of a croſs, on her breaſt; another on her arm, and great ſtrings of pearl round her wriſts. She ſtands beneath a canopy, on which is a crown and coat of arms.

ANOTHER, of a young lady leaning on a chair, in a gauze cap, falling back; yellow petticoat flowered with red, and a feather-ſan.

A HALF-LENGTH of Colonel Backwell, in blue, gold ſleeves and frogs, a ſaſh; and a battle in view.

A SMALL portrait of Edward Backwell, [Note: EDW. BACKWELL.] Eſquire. He is repreſented in long hair and a flowered gown, with a table by him. I have a fine print of him, given me by the late Mr. Backwell, one of his deſcendants. He was, ſays Mr. Granger, an alderman of London and a banker, of great ability, induſtry, and integrity, and of moſt extenſive credit; but ruined in the reign of Charles II. by the infamous project of ſhutting up the Exchequer. He retired to Holland, where he died, and was brought over to be interred in the church of Tyringham; where he lies embalmed. A glaſs is placed over his face; ſo his viſage may poſſibly be ſeen to this time.

I COULD not but admire a ſpirited picture of a Falcon ſtooping at Bitterns.

IN the hall is a curious table, of an aſh-colored marble. I ſhould call it a polyneſious marble, being veined like a chart filled with little iſlands, nicely ſhaded at their edges.

[Page 341] As my curioſity led me to explore the kitchen, I found on the walls the rude portraits of me following fiſh, recorded to be taken in the adjacent river, in the years below-mentioned.

  • A carp, in 1648, 2 feet 9 inches long.
  • A pike, in 1658, 3 7.
  • A bream 2 31/2.
  • A ſalmon, 3 10.
  • A perch, 2 0.
  • A ſhad, in 1683, 1 11.

Theſe are the records of rural life; important to thoſe who were perhaps happily diſengaged from the buſtle and cares attendant on politics and diſſipation.

THE adjacent church is dedicated to St. Peter, and united with Filgrave: it is in the gift of Mr. Backwell. The village of Tyringham is quite depopulated, and the church of Filgrave dilapidated; but the inhabitants of that pariſh make uſe of the church of Tyringham.

ABOUT a mile farther, go through the village of Lathbury; [Note: LATHBURY.] near which is the church, and a large old houſe.

A LITTLE farther is Newport Pagnel: in former times of dangerous approach, [Note: NEWPORT PAGNEL.] by reaſon of the overflowing of the Ouze. This ſmall town ſtands between that river and the Lovet, near their junction. Soon after the Conqueſt, it was the property of William Fitz-Auſculph; *; from him it paſſed to the Paganels, or Painels, in the reign of William Rufus, who continued poſſeſſed of it above a century. Leland mentions them as lords of the [Page 342] caſtle of Newport Pagnel *. On the death of Gervaſe Pagnel, in the reign of Richard I. this manor became the property of John de Somerie, by marriage with Hawiſe, daughter of Gervaſe. His ſon Ralph, gave king John a hundred pounds, and two palfreys, for livery of this lordſhip, and did homage for it. In the reign of Henry III. Roger de Somerie forfeited his lands, for neglecting (on ſummons) to receive the honor of knighthood. The king then granted the farm of this place to Walter de Kirkham for life, quitting him of ſuits to county and hundred, and of aid to ſheriffs and his bailiffs; and that, when the king or his heirs ſhould tallage their manors and demeſnes, the ſaid Walter might by himſelf, and to his own uſe, tallage the ſaid manor in like form as it might be tallaged if it were in the king's hand. But I find that it afterwards reverted to the Someries. In the reign of Edward II. it was conveyed to Thomas de Botetourt, by his marriage with Joan, one of the ſiſters of John de Somerie, laſt male heir§. I now loſe ſight of the ſucceſſion, and can only ſay, that it continued a place of ſtrength till the civil wars of the laſt century, when its ſtrength was demoliſhed, or, according to the phraſe of the time, ſlighted, by order of parlement, in 1646**.

IT flouriſhes greatly, [Note: LACE MANUFACTURE.] by means of the lace manufacture, which we ſtole from the Flemings, and introduced with great ſucceſs into this county. There is ſcarcely a door to be ſeen, during ſummer, in moſt of the towns, but what is occupied by ſome induſtrious [Page 343] pale-faced laſs; their ſedentary trade forbidding the roſe to bloom in their ſickly cheeks.

THE church is dedicated to St. Peter and St. Paul; [Note: CHURCH.] was an impropriation belonging to the neighboring abbey of Tickford; and is in the gift of the crown.

Here were three hoſpitals, founded in early times. That by John de Somerie, [Note: HOSPITALS.] about the year 1280, ſtill ſurvives, for three poor men, and the ſame number of poor women; having been refounded by Anne of Denmark, and from her is called Queen Anne's Hoſpital. The vicar of Newport, for the time being, is appointed maſter*.

ABOUT eight miles from Newport, at the forty-four mile-ſtone, at Hogſty-houſe, enter the county of BEDFORD, on Woburn Sands, ſeated on the extremity of the range of hills which traverſe the eaſt end of the former county, [Note: WOBURN SANDS.] and contain the pariſhes of the three Brickhills. Near the road ſide are the noted pits of fullers earth, that invaluable ſubſtance, [Note: FULLERS EARTH.] which is ſuppoſed to give that great ſuperiority to the Britiſh cloth (honeſtly worked) over that of other nations.

THE beds over this important marl are, firſtly, ſeveral layers of reddiſh ſand, to the thickneſs of ſix yards; then ſucceeds a ſtratum of ſand-ſtone, of the ſame color; beneath which, for ſeven or eight yards more, the ſand is again continued to the fullers earth; the upper part of which, being impure, or mixed with ſand, is [Page 344] flung aſide, the reſt taken up for uſe. The earth lies in layers; under which is a bed of rough white free-ſtone, about two feet thick, and under that ſand; beyond that the laborers never have penetrated.

THE great uſe of this earth is cleanſing the cloth, or imbibing the tar, greaſe, and tallow, which are ſo frequently employed by the ſhepherds, in healing the external diſeaſes which ſheep are liable to; neither can the wool be worked, ſpun, or woven, unleſs it be well greaſed. All this greaſe muſt be gotten out, before the cloths are fit to wear. Other countries either want this ſpecies of earth, or have it in leſs perfection. The Britiſh legiſlature therefore have, from the days of Charles I. guarded againſt the exportation, under ſevere penalties. The Romans attended to the fulling buſineſs by their lex Metella, which was made expreſsly to regulate the manufacture*. They uſed various kinds of earth: the cimolia, the ſarda (which came from Sardinia) and the umbrica. The two firſt were white; the latter might be allied to ours, creſcit in macerando. It ſwells in water; a property of the true marls. But the application of earths in the woollen manufacture, and for the cleanſing purpoſes, was of very early times: — But who may [Page 345] abide the day of his coming, and who ſhall ſtand when He appeareth? for He is like a refiner's fire, and like FULLERS SOPE*.

AT a ſmall diſtance from hence lies the little town of Woburn, [Note: WOBURN TOWN.] in which is a free-ſchool, founded by Francis I. earl of Bedford, and a charity-ſchool for thirty boys, by Wriotheſly duke of Bedford. The church was built by the laſt abbot of Woburn , and [Note: CHURCH.] belonged to that religious houſe; having been a chapel to Birchmore, a church long ſince demoliſhed. This place is of exempt juriſdiction, under the patronage of the adjacent great family. The ſteeple is oddly disjoined from the church. The chancel has been very elegantly fitted up with ſtucco by the late duke. The pulpit is a pretty piece of gothic carving, probably coeval with the abbey.

A NEAT monument of Sir Francis Stanton is preſerved here; [Note: TOMBS.] who, with his lady, is kneeling at an altar.

IN the ſouth aile ſtood a grey marble, robbed of the figure of a prieſt under a large canopy, and four coats of arms, with the inſcription entire.

Hic jacet Johs Morton, filius quonda Johes Morton, de Portſgrave, domini de Lovelſbury, qi obiit in die comemorcois Sci Pauli, anno Dni Millmo C. C. C. nonageſimo quarto. Quor aie ppicietur Deus .

IN the eaſt window were the arms of Robert Vere earl of Oxford, impaling Samford; the laſt, in right of his wife Alice, daughter and heireſs to Gilbert lord Samford, chamberlain to Elinor, conſort to Edward I.

[Page 346] AT a little diſtance from the town was ſituated the abbey, [Note: ABBEY.] founded, in 1145, by Hugh de Bolebec, a nobleman of great property in this neighborhood; who, inſpired by God, made a viſit to the abbot of Fountains, to adviſe with him about his pious deſign*. The abbot encouraged him to proceed; and Hugh erected the buildings, endowed them, and peopled them with monks of the Ciſtercian order, and placed over them, as firſt abbot, Alan, brought from the monaſtery of St. Mary, at York. . The place proſpered, by ſeveral benefactions; and at the diſſolution, was found, according to Dugdale, to be poſſeſſed of revenues to the amount of £391. 18s. 2d. a year, or to £430. 13s. 11d. according to Speed .

THE laſt abbot, Robert Hobbs, was hanged at Woburn, in March 1537, for not acknowleging the king's ſupremacy. The monaſtery and its revenues, in 1547, were granted by Edward VI. to lord Ruſſel, ſoon after created earl of Bedford by the ſame prince. No one profited ſo greatly by the plunder of the church as this family: the fortune, even to the preſent time, doth principally originate from gifts of this nature. To the grant of Woburn it owes much of its property in this county, and in Bucks; to that of the rich abbey of Taviſtoke, vaſt fortunes and intereſt in Devonſhire; and, to render them more extenſive, that of Dunkeſwell was added. The donation of Thorney abbey gave him an amazing tract of fens in Cambridgeſhire, together with a great revenue. Melchburn abbey (I ſhould have before ſaid) increaſed his property in Bedfordſhire; the priory of Caſtle Hymel gave him footing in [Page 347] Northamptonſhire; and he came in for parcels of the appurtenance of St. Alban's, and Mountgrace in Yorkſhire; not to mention the houſe of the friars preachers in Exeter, with the revenues belonging to the foundation: and finally, the eſtate about Covent Garden, with a field adjoining, called The Seven Acres, on which Long Acre is built, appertenances to the convent of Weſtminſter; the firſt, a garden belonging to the abbot.

THE ſuperſtitious will ſtand amazed, that no ſignal judgment has overtaken the children of ſacrilege; yet no houſe in Britain has thriven more than the houſe of Ruſſel.

THE houſe is ſituated in a very pleaſant park, well wooded, [Note: HOUSE.] but defective in water; the ſeveral pieces being too much divided, and the dams too conſpicuous. The preſent houſe was built by the late duke, excepting a paltry grotto, by Inigo Jones (which ſhews that his taſte was ſuperior to ſuch childiſh performances) and the great ſtables, which were part of the antient cloiſters, and ſtill preſerve their pillars and vaulted roof. The offices are alſo the work of the late duke, and form two magnificent but plain buildings, at a ſmall diſtance from the manſion.

THIS houſe is a treaſure of paintings; of portraits of the great, [Note: PORTRAITS.] now illuſtrious by their figure they make in the eyes of poſterity, undazzled with their wealth, rank, power, or qualifications, mental or corporeal, which concealed their failings, and made them paſs at leſt unnoticed openly by their cotemporaries. They now undergo a poſthumous trial, and, like the Egyptians of old, receive cenſure or praiſe according to their reſpective merits.

THE firſt which ſtruck me was a lady, who defied the ſtricteſt [Page 348] ſcrutiny; a ſmall full-length, in widow's weeds, with her head reclined on one hand, and a book by her; [Note: RACHEL LADY RUSSEL.] with a countenance full of deep and ſilent ſorrow: the ſad relict of the virtuous lord RUSSEL, and daughter to the good and great Wriotheſly earl of Southampton. I imagine her in the third month of her affliction, filled with the following meditation:

‘LORD, let me underſtand the reaſon of theſe dark and wounding providences, that I ſink not under the diſcouragement of my own thoughts. I know I have deſerved my puniſhment, and will be ſilent under it; but yet ſecretly my heart mourns, becauſe I have not the dear companion and ſharer of my joys and ſorrows: I want him to talk with, to eat, and ſleep with. All theſe things are irkſome to me now: the day unwelcome, and the night ſo too. All company and meals I would avoid, if it might be; yet all this is, that I enjoy not the world in my own way; and this ſure hinders my comfort. When I ſee my children before me, I remember the pleaſure he took in them! This makes my heart to ſhrink. Can I regret his quitting a leſſer good for a bigger? O! if I did ſtedfaſtly believe, I could not be dejected! But I will not injure myſelf, to ſay I offer my mind any inferior conſolation to ſupply this loſs: no, I moſt willingly forſake this world, this vexatious, troubleſome world, in which I have no other buſineſs but to rid my ſoul from ſin; ſecure, by faith and a good conſcience, my eternal intereſt; with patience and courage bear my eminent misfortunes, and ever hereafter be above the ſmiles and frowns of it; and when I have done the remnant of the work appointed me on earth, then joyfully wait for the heavenly perfection, in GOD'S good time; when, by his infinite mercy, I [Page 349] may be accounted worthy to enter in the ſame place of reſt and repoſe, where he is gone for whom only I grieve*.’

I NOW turn my eyes to a lady, whoſe felicity conſiſted in a different fate; in being early cut off from the embraces of a capricious tyrant, [Note: LADY JANE SEYMOUR.] whoſe inconſtancy and whoſe luſts would probably have involved her in miſery, had not heaven, in its mercy, taken her to itſelf. Lady Jane Seymour, the lady in queſtion, became queen to Henry VIII. in 1536, and was releaſed from him by death, 1537. The portrait expreſſes the elegance of her perſon. She is dreſſed in red, with great gold net-work ſleeves, and rich in jewels. Her print, among the illuſtrious heads, does her little juſtice.

THAT gloomy inſipid pair, Philip II. and his conſort Mary, [Note: PHILIP AND MARY.] are painted in ſmall full-lengths, by Sir Antonio More. The firſt of theſe ungracious figures is dreſſed in a black jacket, with gold ſleeves and hoſe; the queen ſitting, in a black-and-gold petticoat, and furred ſleeves. Her black conic cap is faced with gold and jewels. A rich chain of great pearls and ſmall vaſes, red and gold, are other ornaments to our bigotted ſovereign. The date is 1553. Sir Antonio was ſent from Spain to draw her picture; ſo has placed them in a ſcene of aukward courtſhip; for they were not married till the following year.

ANOTHER remarkable portrait, by the ſame painter, [Note: ED. COURTENEY EARL OF DEVONSHIRE.] is that of Edward Courteney, laſt earl of Devonſhire of his name; who, for his nearneſs in blood to the crown, was impriſoned by the jealous Henry, from the age of ten till about that of twenty-eight. His daughter Mary ſet him at liberty, and wooed him to ſhare the kingdom with her. He rejected her offer, in preference to her ſiſter [Page 350] Elizabeth; for which, and ſome falſe ſuſpicion of diſaffection, he ſuffered another impriſonment with Elizabeth. He was ſoon releaſed. He quitted the kingdom, as prudence directed, and died at the age of thirty, at Padua.

HE is repreſented as a handſome man, with ſhort brown hair, and a yellow beard, a dark jacket, with white ſleeves, and breeches; behind him is a ruined tower; beneath him this inſcription, expreſſive of his misfortunes:

En! puer et inſons et adhuc juvenilibus annis;
Annos bis ſeptem carcere cluſus eram.
Me pater his tenuit vinclis, quae filia ſolvit:
Sors mea ſic tandem vertitur a ſuperis.
Fourteen long years in ſtrict captivity,
Tyrant-condemn'd, I paſs'd my early bloom,
'Till pity bade the generous daughter free
A guiltleſs captive, and reverſe my doom.
R. W.

SIR Philip Sydney is painted in the twenty-ſecond year of his age; [Note: SIR. PHILIP SYDNEY.] in a quilled ruff, white ſlaſhed jacket, a three-quarter length. He was a deſerved favorite of queen Elizabeth: who well might think the court deficient without him; for, to uncommon knowlege, valour, and virtuous gallantry, was joined a romantic ſpirit, congenial with that of his royal miſtreſs. His romance of Arcadia is not reliſhed at preſent: it may be tedious; but the morality, I fear, renders it diſguſting to our age. It is too replete with innocence to be reliſhed. Sir Philip was to the Engliſh, what the Chevalier Bayard was to the French, Un Chevalier ſans peur, et ſans reproches. Both were ſtrongly tinctured with enthuſiaſtic virtue: both died in the field with the higheſt ſentiments of piety.

[Page 351] I LAMENT that the portraits are not placed in chronological order: I muſt give them as I found them. Iſabella, [Note: ISABELLA DUTCHESS OF GRAFTON.] daughter to Henry Bennet earl of Arlington, and wife to the firſt duke of Grafton, is repreſented a half-length, in white, with long flowing hair, very handſome.

IN one of theſe apartments is a head of the duke of Monmouth. [Note: DUKE OF MONMOUTH.]

A CAPITAL picture of the plague. The dead bodies appear infectious, by the attitudes of the living. To increaſe the horror, the artiſt has placed a live infant by its dead mother: a circumſtance not unknown in the dreadful peſtilence in London, of 1665. By Nicholas Pouſſin.

A FINE view of Pout Neuf, with numbers of figures, by Wovermans.

IN the green drawing-room is a fine landſcape by Claude Lorrain; with a view of the ſea. The figures are ſhepherds and ſhepherdeſſes.

David, and Abigail averting his wrath. Her beauty and ſuppliant looks are admirable. By Lucca Jordano.

A LANDSCAPE, by G. Pouſſin; with the figure of an old man begging.

FROM hence I croſſed through the hall, a low room, ſupported by eight pillars, into

THE DINING-ROOM. In this apartment are four pieces, repreſenting Alexander's campaigns, by old Parocel. The firſt is a repoſe after a march: he and his companions feaſting under a tree. Two others are battles.

A LANDSCAPE, by Mr. Gainſborough; containing cattle, figures, [Page 352] and an antient tree: a piece that would do credit to the beſt maſters.

IN THE COFFEE-ROOM is a large family-picture, [Note: FAMILY PICTURES.] by Jervis, of Elizabeth Howland, dutcheſs to the firſt Wriotheſley duke of Bedford, in her weeds, with her four children. Above her, in the back part of the picture, hangs the portrait of her lord; the ſame who built Covent Garden church, and was called The good Duke.

IN another apartment is a large picture, repreſenting the preſent dutcheſs, preſenting her daughter (the dutcheſs of Marlborough) to Minerva, the Sciences, and Graces; painted by Hamilton, an artiſt ſettled, I believe, at Rome.

A FULL-LENGTH of a nobleman, in a hat with a red crown and feather, ſquare black beard, red ear-rings and ſtockings: in his robes, with a white rod in his hand. This was brought from Thornbaugh, a ſeat of the family in Northamptonſhire.

OPPOSITE to him is a portrait of a lady, in black, a red-and-white petticoat, flat ruff, and a great ſtring of pearls acroſs her breaſt.

Two children in one piece, [Note: LADY DIANA AND ANNE RUSSEL.] lady Diana and lady Anne Ruſſel, daughters of William, firſt duke of Bedford. They had the miſfortune of being poiſoned, by eating ſome noxious berries which they met with. Lady Anne died; lady Diana ſurvived, and is again painted, in more advanced life, by Sir Peter Lely.

A MAN, with his jacket grey, breeches red, ſhort hair, and ſmall beard; a ſtick in his hand, and helmet by him. Date 1592, aet. 28.

Elizabeth Bruges, [Note: ELIZABETH BRUGES.] or Bridges, aged 14, 1589, painted in a flat ſtile, by Hieronymo di Cuſtodio, of Antwerp. She is repreſented in [Page 353] black, flowered with white, with full ſleeves, a gold chain, a great pearl ſet in gold on one ſhoulder, and a gold ornament on the other. This lady was eldeſt daughter to Giles lord Chandos, and wife to Sir John Kenneda, Knight*: ſhe dying childleſs, the whole fortune of her family devolved to his ſecond ſiſter, Catherine counteſs of Bedford.

IN this room is a full-length of that fantaſtic lady, [Note: LUCY COUNTESS OF BEDFORD.] Lucy counteſs of Bedford, in a dancing attitude, dreſſed in as fantaſtic a habit, with an immenſe tranſparent veil diſtended behind her. I have ſpoken ſufficiently of this lady elſewhere; ſo ſhall add nothing more, but that her vanity and extravagance met with no check under the rule of her quiet ſpouſe Edward earl of Bedford, whom ſhe ſurvived only one year.

A STRANGE figure of a man, in black, half-length, in a cloſe black cap, and a letter in his hand, directed to Pr. de Naſſau. I am informed, by a very able herald, that, from the arms on the picture, the perſonage repreſented is the Count de Naſſau-Uranien Naſſau.

IN the billiard-room is a curious painted pedigree.

THE arras hangings fall over the doors, in the old faſhion. The lifting up of ſuch hangings have often given opportunity for dreadful aſſaſſinations.

IN the paſſage-room is a portrait of the preſent dutcheſs of Marlborough. [Note: PRESENT DUTCHESS OF MARLBOROUGH.]

James earl of Carliſle, , in long hair, buff coat, [Note: JAMES EARL OF CARLISLE.] and red ſaſh.

[Page 354] SIR Edward Stradling, [Note: SIR EDW. STEADLING.] of St. Donet's, in South Wales. A head, with whiſkers, a turnover, and black dreſs. I imagine him to be the gentleman who had a regiment under Charles I; who was taken priſoner at the battle of Edgehill, and who died on his releaſe at Oxford.

THE Angel haſtening the departure of Lot out of Sodom, by Rubens. Small.

LORD Francis Ruſſel, a miniature, in black dreſs.

RUBENS and his two wives. Heads.

A BOY and girl, by Morillio.

THE LIBRARY, with a coved roof, painted by Cypriani and Rebecca. Apollo and the Muſes by the firſt; the other ſubjects by the latter.

IN the green room is a ſingular picture of Ignatius Loyola, in black, with a dog behind him, kneeling to the apparition of our Saviour in the clouds, by Baſſan.

TWO, by Roſa di Tivoli.

AN Aſcenſion, a fine piece, by Sebaſtian Ricci. The confuſion and terror of the ſoldiers are inimitably expreſſed.

A BATTLE, by Pandolfo.

THE caſtle of St. Angelo, by Lucatelli. A MAN'S head, in which is a noble appearance of contrition and hope, by Baleſtra.

AN old woman's head, by Guido.

IN the little blue room is a fine full-length of a nobleman, in a black-and-gold veſt, and a high-crowned hat in his hand. On the back ground is a curtain, almoſt concealing a lady; of whom nothing but one hand and part of her petticoat is ſeen. By this is Aetatis. 1614. L [...] I.

[Page 355] THE muſic-room is ſmall, but elegant, ſtuccoed and gilt. Several oval compartments, and prettily filled with paintings in clare obſcur, by Cypriani and Rebecca.

A PORTRAITS, called Lucy counteſs of Bedford, in a white ſatin gown worked with colors, [Note: LUCY? COUNTESS OF BEDFORD.] a laced ſingle ruff, and a long ſcarlet velvet cloak hanging gracefully, with one arm folded in it. On her head is a pearl coronet, and pearls on her wriſts. In the back ground ſhe appears in a garden, in the true attitude of ſtately diſdain, bent half back, in ſcorn of a poor gentleman bowing to the very ground. Unfortunately for her lover, it is probable that Donne had juſt told her,

Out from your chariot morning breaks at night,
And falſifies both computations, ſo;
Since a new world doth riſe here from your light,
We your new creatures by new reck'nings go.
This ſhows that you from nature lothly ſtray,
Thus ſuffer not an artificial day.
In this you have made the court the antipodes,
And will'd your delegate, the vulgar ſunne,
To doe profane autumnal offices,
Whilſt here to you wee ſacrificers runne.
In all religions as much care hath bin
Of temples frames and beauty', as rites within*.

HEADS of lions, by Rubens.

[Page 356] THE Iſraelites carrying the ark, by Parocel.

A FEMALE dwarf; dwarf to Catherine, queen to Charles II.

IN the upper dining-room is a full-length portrait of the well-known unfortunate Robert, [Note: ROBERT EARL OF ESSEX.] earl of Eſſex, in white. The queen's paſſion for Eſſex certainly was not founded on the beauty of his perſon. His beard was red, his hair black, his perſon ſtrong, but without elegance, his gait ungraceful*. But the queen was far paſt the heyday of her blood: ſhe was ſtruck with his romantic valour, with his ſeeming attachment to her perſon, and, I may add, with the violence of his paſſions; for her majeſty, like the reſt of her ſex, probably ‘Stoop'd to the forward and the bold.’ At length his preſumption increaſed with her favor: her fears overcame her affection, and, after many ſtruggles, at length conſigned him to the ſcaffold; having thoroughly worked himſelf out of her gracious conceit. .

Catherine counteſs of Bedford, [Note: CATHERINE COUNTESS OF BEDFORD.] wife to Francis earl of Bedford, and daughter to Giles Bruges, third lord Chandos. Her dreſs is a pearl coronet, and hair flowing below her waiſt, a worked gown, and red mantle: a fine full-length.

Edward earl of Ruſſel, [Note: EDWARD EARL OF BEDFORD.] ſitting. He is dreſſed in black-and-gold, with a high-crown hat; his hand in a ſaſh, being gouty. This nobleman was an exception to the good underſtanding this family is bleſt with; and unluckily was matched with a lady whoſe vanity and expences were boundleſs.

[Page 357] LORD TREASURER Burleigh, the able ſtateſman of Elizabeth; a favorite, [Note: TREASURER BURLEIGH.] whom ſhe choſe, as ſhe expreſſed it, not for his bad legs, but for his good head *. His maxims did not quite agree with thoſe of the miniſters of later days; for he held, That nothing could be for the advantage of the prince, which makes anyway againſt his reputation: wherefore he never would ſuffer the rents of lands to be raiſed, nor the old tenants to be put out.

THIS great ſtateſman is repreſented ſitting. His countenance comely, his beard grey, his gown black and furred, and adorned with a gold chain. His miſtreſs loſt this faithful ſervant in 1598, aged ſeventy-ſeven.

HIS ſecond ſon is placed near him, ſtanding: a mean, little, [Note: ROBERT EARL OF SALISBURY.] deformed figure, poſſeſſed of his father's abilities, but mixed with deceit and treachery. His ſervices to his maſter and his country, will give him rank among the greateſt miniſters; but his ſhare in bringing the great Raleigh to the ſcaffold, and the dark part he acted, in ſecretly precipitating the generous, unſuſpecting Eſſex to his ruin, will ever remain indelible blots on him as a man. His dreſs is that of the Spaniſh nation (though he was averſe to its politics) a black jacket and cloak, which add no grace to his figure.

NEXT is the portrait of Sir William Ruſſel (afterwards duke of Bedford) when young. [Note: SIR WILLIAM RUSSEL, FIRST DUKE OF BEDFORD.] He is dreſſed in robes of the order of the Bath, leaning on his ſword; and by him a dwarf, aged thirty-two. On the picture is inſcribed Johannes Priwezer, di Hungaria, fecit. 1627: a painter of merit, but whoſe works are rare. There is [Page 358] another portrait of him in the gallery, a full-length, in a long wig, and, I think, the robes of the Garter.

Anne, [Note: HIS DUTCHESS.] daughter of that infamous pair, Robert Car earl of Somerſet and his counteſs, is painted by Vandyck, in blue, drawing on a glove: a moſt beautiful half-length. She was the wife of Sir William Ruſſel, above mentioned, married to him in the year 1637. She proved worthy of the alliance ſhe made. It is ſaid that ſhe was ignorant of her mother's diſhonor, till ſhe read it in a pamphlet ſhe found accidentally left in a window. It is added, that the was ſo ſtruck with this detection of her parents guilt, that ſhe fell down in a fit, and was found ſenſeleſs, with the book open before her. She died on May 10th, 1684. The anecdote is omitted in the hiſtories of the family, probably to avoid the revival of a diſgraceful tale. Francis earl of Bedford was ſo averſe to the alliance, that he gave his ſon leave to chuſe a wife out of any family but that. Oppoſition uſually ſtimulates deſire: the young couple's affections were only increaſed. At length the king interpoſed, and, ſending the duke of Lenox to urge the earl to conſent, the match was brought about. Somerſet, now reduced to poverty, acted a generous part; ſelling his houſe at Chiſwick, plate, jewels, and furniture, to raiſe a fortune for his daughter of twelve thouſand pounds, which the earl of Bedford demanded; ſaying, that ſeeing her affections were ſettled, he choſe rather to undo himſelf than make her unhappy*.

HER father-in-law, [Note: THE SECOND FRANCIS EARL OF BEDFORD.] the ſecond Francis earl of Bedford, by Vandyck; full-length, in black, with light hair and ſhort peaked [Page 359] beard; painted in 1636, aged forty-eight. He died in 1641, and left behind him a diſtinguiſhed character. He was of the popular party; but of ſuch an excellent underſtanding, ſo good a heart, and of ſuch great moderation, that it is ſuppoſed, that, had he lived, his influence with his friends would have been exerted to have compoſed the unhappy violences of the times. This was the nobleman who undertook, and ſucceeded in the arduous attempt of draining the vaſt fen in Cambridgeſhire, called The Great Level; containing three hundred and ſix thouſand acres*.

IN the ſaloon is a fine half-length of a man, by Titian.

Cain ſlaying Abel, by Guido.

A BEAUTIFUL young woman waſhing, with an old man by her: a moſt pleaſing picture, by Le Moine.

OVER the chimney is a full-length of the earl of Briſtol, [Note: EARL OF BRISTOL AND SIR W. RUSSEL.] and Sir William Ruſſel (afterwards earl of Bedford). The former is in black; the other in red. A copy from Vandyck.

LATE king of France: full-length.

ANGELS flying: a very graceful painting, by Morillio.

THE Laſt Supper, by Tintoret.

THE viſion of our Saviour's paſſion to admiring ſpectators. God appears above, and angels ſupport the croſs. By Luca Jordano.

Two landſcapes, by Pouſſin [...]

IN the blue drawing-room is an exquiſite picture of Joſeph expounding the dream to Pharaoh's baker. The laſt, ſitting, with vaſt and eager attention in his countenance. In Joſeph appears [Page 360] vaſt concern, at his aſſured foreknowlege of the fatal prediction. By Rembra [...]. Near it is a portrait of that great painter, by himſelf.

IN the French dreſſing-room is a ſtriking reſemblance of the preſent dutcheſs of Bedford; and in the gallery is a very fine full-length of her worthy huſband, the late duke, repreſented ſitting, in his robes.

A MADONNA and child, by Guercino.

A MAGDALENE, by An. Caracci.

Anne counteſs of Warwick, [Note: ANNE COUNTESS OF WARWICK.] daughter to the firſt Francis earl of Bedford, and wife to Ambroſe Dudley earl of Warwick. The date is 1600. She is in her full age, and dreſſed in black and gold, with white-and-ſtriped ſleeves.

IN the ſtate dreſſing-room are numbers of ſmall pieces. A fine landſcape, with figures, by Cuyp: Oliver Cromwell, repreſented in a field of battle: two very fine ſmall views of rock and wood, by Salvator Roſa: a ſea view, by Vandevelde: a holy family, by Simon de Peſaro: the child ſeizing on a crown of thorns, out of a baſket of flowers, in preference to the moſt exquiſite of the aſſemblage; the turn of his head beautiful: a Magdalen, by Hannibal Carracci: and a horſe in a ſtable, by Wouverman: another Magdalen, by Treviſiani: a fine bright landſcape, by Claude Lorrain; two, by Salvator Roſa; one, by Cuyp; and two humorous Dutch pieces, by Both, merit attention.

LATE lord and lady Taviſtoke. His lordſhip in a red gown, [Note: LORD AND LADY TAVISTOKE.] furred. He is again repreſented in another room, in the uniform of the Dunſtable Hunt.

THE gallery; [Note: GALLERY.] a room unparalleled for its valuable and inſtructive number of portraits: their hiſtory would make a volume. [Page 361] I can only pretend to point out ſome principal facts, that the ſpectator, who may honor me with his company through this illuſtrious aſſemblage, may not have to reproach me, with ſuffering him to depart wholly uninformed.

THE firſt I ſhall point out, is a head of lord WILLIAM RUSSEL, [Note: LORD WILLIAM RUSSEL.] the ſad victim to his virtuous deſign of preſerving our liberties and conſtitution from the attempts of as abandoned a ſet of men as ever governed theſe kingdoms. True patriotiſm, not ambition nor intereſt, directed his intentions. Poſterity muſt applaud his unavailing engagements, with due cenſure of the Machiavelian neceſſity of taking off ſo dangerous an oppoſer of the machinations of his enemies. The law of politics gives ſanction to the removal of every obſtacle to the deſigns of ſtateſmen. At the ſame time, we never ſhould leſſen our admiration and pity of the generous characters who fell ſacrifices to their hopes of delivering purified to their deſcendants, the corrupted government of their own days. To attempt to clear lord RUSSEL from the ſhare in ſo glorious a deſign, would be to deprive him of a moſt brilliant part of his character. His integrity and ingenuity would not ſuffer even himſelf to deny that part of the charge. Let that remain unimpeached, ſince he continues ſo perfectly acquitted of the moſt diſtant deſign of making aſſaſſination a means; or of intriguing with a foreign monarch, the moſt repugnant to our religion and freedom, to bring about ſo deſired an end.

OVER the door is Sir Nicholas Bacon, in a black dreſs, furred*. [Note: SIR NICHOLAS BACON.] By Zucchero.

[Page 362] SIR Nicholas Throgmorton.

SIR. Ed. Gorges? [Note: SIR ED. GORGES.] a head.

ANOTHER, [Note: SIR JOSSELYN PERCY.] head, of Sir Joſſelyn Percy, ſeventh ſon of Henry, eighth earl of Northumberland. He and his brother Charles were concerned in the earl of Eſſex's inſurrection. Both received their pardons: and Joſſelyn ſurvived till 1631.

ANOTHER, [Note: COMPTROLLER ROGERS.] of a gentleman of the name of Rogers, comptroller to queen Elizabeth. I imagine him to have been Sir Edward Rogers: a perſon of ſome conſideration at the time of her acceſſion; for he was one of the few who waited on her at Hatfield, on the death of queen Mary, and formed one of the privy-council held there on that great event*.

Thomas earl of Exeter, [Note: THOMAS EARL OF EXETER.] eldeſt ſon to the great Burleigh, is painted, a full-length.

NOTWITHSTANDING this nobleman was inferior in abilities to his younger brother, yet was he a man of ſpirit and of parts. He ſerved as volunteer at the ſiege of Edinburgh caſtle, in 1573; diſtinguiſhed himſelf in the wars in the Low Countries; and, with his brother, ſerved on board the fleet which had the honor of defeating the Spaniſh armada. He entered alſo into the romantic gallantries of the reign of queen Elizabeth, and was a knight-tilter in the tournaments performed for the amuſement of her illuſtrious lover the duke of Anjou, in 1581. In the following reign he was employed as a man of buſineſs; was created earl of [Page 363] Exeter; and finiſhed his courſe, aged eighty, in February, 1622.

NEAR him is the head of Charles Brandon duke of Suffolk, [Note: CHARLES BRANDON.] ſon of Sir William Brandon, ſtandard-bearer to Henry VII. ſlain in the battle of Boſworth. His dreſs is black, with red ſleeves, with the collar of the Garter and the George. His beard is white; his countenance bluff, not unlike that of his maſter, Henry VIII. Their qualities, happily for the favorite, were different; for the inſcription with truth ſays, that he was ‘gratioſe with Henry VIII.; void of deſpyte; moſt fortunate to the end; never in diſpleaſure with his kynge.’ He was brought up with his maſter, and juſtly beloved by him for his noble qualities, for his goodly perſon, courage, and conformity of diſpoſition (I ſuppoſe only) in all his exerciſes and paſtimes*. He was a principal figure in every tilt and tournament. In his younger days (1510) he appeared at Weſtminiſter in the ſolemn juſts, held in honor of Catherine of Arragon, in the dreſs of a recluſe, begging of her highneſs permiſſion to run in her preſence; which obtained, he inſtantly flung off his weeds, and came out all armed. He ſignalized himſelf at the juſt at Tournay, in 1511, inſtituted by Margaret princeſs of Caſtile, in compliment to his royal maſter. The place was flagged with black marble, and the horſes of the knights ſhod with felt, to prevent them from ſlipping. He here won the heart of the fair foundreſs of the entertainment; but fortune reſerved him for another princeſs.

IN 1514 he performed amazing deeds of arms at St. Dennis, [Page 364] at the coronation of the youthful Mary, ſiſter to Henry, on her marriage with the aged and decrepid Louis XII. The good king, ſays Henault, forgot his age, and met with death in her arms in leſs than three months. This opened the way to the poſſeſſion of the beautiful dowager. Her heart was loſt to him at the preceding tournaments; in which ſhe had opportunity to compare her feeble bridegroom with the dexterity, the grace, and ſtrength of her valiant knight; who, at ſingle combat, overthrew man and horſe. The French, envious of his proweſs, introduced into the liſts a gigantic German, in hopes of bringing the Engliſh hero into diſgrace. He treated the Almain ſo roughly, that the French interfered; but, in a ſecond trial, Suffolk caught him round the neck, and pummelled him ſo ſeverely about the head, that they were obliged to convey the fellow away ſecretly; who had been ſurreptitiouſly introduced in diſguiſe, merely on account of his great ſtrength*.

Mary, on the death of her royal conſort, propoſed to Suffolk, and gave him only four days to conſider of the offer. This ſeems concerted, to ſave her lover from the fury of Henry, for daring to look up to a dowager of France, and, what was more, his ſiſter. His maſter, fortunately, favored the match. He continued beloved by the king to the end of his life; after ſeeing the following knights and attendants on the conjugal feſtivities, the earl of Devonſhire, lord Leonard Grey, Sir Nicholas Carew, and Anne Bullein, ſent headleſs to their graves. But Charles went off triumphant with his royal ſpouſe; carried with him her jewels, to [Page 365] the amount of 200,000 crowns; the famous diamond le mirroir de Naples; and ſecured her jointure of ſixty thouſand crowns*. He married almoſt as many wives as his maſter, leaving his fourth to ſurvive him. He died univerſally lamented, in Auguſt 1545, and was buried magnificently, at the expence of his maſter; his loſs being one of the few things that touched his hardened heart.

Edward Clinton, firſt earl of Lincoln, ſitting: a half-length, [Note: EDW. CLINTON, FIRST EARL OF LINCOLN.] in black, a ſhort ruff, bonnet, and with his George. By Cornelius Ketel, the whimſical artiſt, who took it into his head to lay aſide his bruſhes, and paint with his fingers only; and at length, finding thoſe tools too eaſy, undertook to paint with his toes. This nobleman was one of the moſt diſtinguiſhed perſons of his age, and ſhone equally as a ſoldier and a ſailor; for, during the reigns of Henry VIII. Edward VI. Mary, and Elizabeth, there were ſcarcely any expeditions in which he did not ſignalize himſelf. He was lord great admiral for thirty years; counſellor to three princes; and of unſpotted reputation. In an advanced age, he married for his third wife the fair Geraldine, the ſubject of the gallant earl of Surrey's affection, and of his amorous Muſe. Their union never took place. It is probable that ſhe deſerted him; for ſoon after his ſonnet, deſcriptive of the fair, ‘From Tuſcane came my ladies worthy race.’ follow ſeveral others, complaining of his hard lot, in experiencing [Page 366] the ſcorn and inconſtancy of his miſtreſs; but what affects him moſt is, the giving the preference to a lover of meaner rank.

I know (though ſhe ſay nay, and would it well withſtand)
When in hir grace thou yeldeſt the moſt, ſhe bare thee but in hand.
I ſee her pleaſant cheere in chiefeſt of thy ſuite,
When thou art gone I ſee him come that gathers up the fruite;
And eke in thy reſpecte, I ſee the baſe degree
Of him to whom ſhe gave the heart that promiſed was to thee*.

The lady, [Note: THE FAIR GERALDINE.] like many other beauties, humiliated by years, at length reſigned the noon of her charms to this antient peer; who quitted her and the world in 1585.

IN this room is the portrait of Geraldine herſelf, a head. Her hair yellow: her face, a proof how much beauty depends on fancy: her dreſs far from elegant.

A HEAD of John Ruſſel, [Note: JOHN RUSSEL, FIRST EARL OF BEDFORD.] firſt earl of Bedford, a profile, with a long white beard, and the George hanging from his neck. This gentleman was the founder of the family, and owed his riſe to his merit and accompliſhment. Philip archduke of Auſtria, being, in 1508, driven by a ſtorm on the coaſt of Dorſetſhire, was entertained by Sir Thomas Trenchard; who ſent for his neighbor, Mr. Ruſſel, who was ſkilled in the languages, to wait on his highneſs. The duke was ſo pleaſed with his converſation, as to inſiſt on his going with him to the king, then at Windſor. Henry, at the recommendation of the duke, took him into his ſervice. In the following reign he advanced in fortune with vaſt rapidity. [Page 367] He fortunately was cotemporary with the fall of monaſtic life, and obtained vaſt grants of the poſſeſſions of the church. Edward VI. created him earl of Bedford. The laſt act of his life was a voyage to Spain, to bring over Philip II. (grandſon of the prince to whom he owed his riſe) to eſpouſe his royal miſtreſs. He died in March 1555, and lies buried at Cheneis, in Buckinghamſhire, with his lady; by whom he acquired that eſtate. The church of Cheneis, from that time, became the aeterna domus of all this great family, and contains a moſt ſuperb collection of different-faſhioned monuments.

Ambroſe Dudley earl of Warwick, a head, with a bonnet, [Note: AMBROSE EARL OF WARWICK.] black dreſs, the George pendent. His third wiſe, lady Anne, daughter to Francis earl of Bedford, in black-and-white ſleeves, and a black body.

A HALF-LENGTH of Henry earl of Southampton, [Note: HENRY EARL OF SOUTHAMPTON.] by Solomon de Caus *; with ſhort grey hair; in black, with points round his waiſt, a flat ruff, leaning on a chair, with a mantle over one arm. This nobleman was friend to the earl of Eſſex, and through friendſhip, not diſaffection, attended him in the mad and deſperate inſurrection which brought the favorite to the block. The plea was admitted: he was condemned, but reprieved; and continued in the Tower till the acceſſion of James I. when he was inſtantly reſtored to his honors and eſtate. By reaſon of his love to the earl of Eſſex, he never was on good terms with the miniſter, the earl of Saliſbury. He was one that attended Mansfield's [Page 368] army into the Netherlands, and died in 1624, at Bergen op Zoom, of a fever, contracted in that fatal expedition.

Thomas earl of Southampton, [Note: THOMAS EARL OF SOUTHAMPTON.] in black, with a ſtar on his mantle.

SIR William Ruſſel, [Note: SIR WM. RUSSEL LORD THORNHAUGH.] in a black ſlaſhed veſt. He was lord deputy of Ireland in the reign of queen Elizabeth, in 1594: a wiſe and moſt gallant commander, and ſucceſsful in various expeditions againſt the rebels; but not brooking a divided power with the general, Sir John Norris, was, at his own requeſt, recalled. He was created by James I. baron of Thornhaugh, and died in 1613.

HIS lady is painted, [Note: HIS LADY.] dreſſed in great ſleeves. She was daughter of Edward Long, Eſquire, of Thingay, in Cambridgeſhire, and died two years before her lord.

THEIR ſon Francis, afterwards earl of Bedford, is painted in his childhood, in white, with green hoſe; with a hawk on his hand, and two dogs in couples near him.

ANOTHER, [Note: LUCY COUNTESS OF BEDFORD.] portrait of Lucy counteſs of Bedford, exactly reſembling that at Alloa.

A FULL-LENGTH of Catherine, wife of the ſecond Francis earl of Bedford, full-length, in black, with roſes in her hand.

Edward earl of Mancheſter, [Note: EDWARD EARL OF MANCHESTER.] lord chamberlain to Charles II. Long hair and robes.

QUEEN Elizabeth, [Note: QUEEN ELIZABETH.] full-length, with a rich gown, white, embroidered with flowers, and a fan of feathers in her hand. I find that her majeſty would condeſcend to accept of the ſmalleſt preſent, as a mark of her ſubjects love; for, in paſſing through a Doctor Puddin's houſe, in her way to the celebrated wedding of [Page 369] Mrs. Anne Ruſſel with lord Herbert, ſhe did the Doctor the honor of accepting from him a fan en paſſant *.

THE firſt Francis earl of Bedford, with a long white beard and furred robe, [Note: FIRST FRANCIS EARL OF BEDFORD,] and George pendent; a head. Another illuſtrious perſonage of this houſe, who diſcharged ſeveral great offices in the reigns of Mary and Elizabeth. Such was his hoſpitality, that the latter uſed to ſay of him, that he made all the beggars. He died, aged fifty-eight, on the 28th of July 1585, the day after his third ſon, Sir Francis, was ſlain, happily unknowing of the miſfortune.

THIS youth, and his elder brother Edward lord Ruſſel, [Note: AND HIS BROTHER.] are repreſented in ſmall full-lengths, in two paintings; and ſo alike, as ſcarcely to be diſtinguiſhed: both dreſſed in white cloſe jackets, and black-and-gold cloaks, and black bonnets. The date by lord Edward, is aet. 22, 1573. He is repreſented graſping in one hand ſome ſnakes, with this motto, Fides homini, ſerpentibus fraus: and in the back ground he is placed ſtanding in a labyrinth, and above is inſcribed, Fata viam invenient. This young nobleman alſo died before his father.

HIS brother Francis has his accompaniments not leſs ſingular. A lady, ſeemingly in diſtreſs, is repreſented ſitting in the back ground, ſurrounded with ſnakes, a dragon, crocodile, and cock. At a diſtance the ſea, with a ſhip under full fail. The ſtory is not well known; but it certainly alludes to a family tranſaction ſimilar to that in Otway's Orphan, and gave riſe to it. He, by the attendants, was perhaps the Polydore of the hiſtory. Edward [Page 370] ſeems by his motto, Fides homini, ſerpentibus fraus, to have been the Caſtalio, conſcious of his own integrity, and indignant at the perfidy of his brother. The ſhip alludes to the deſertion of the lady. If it conveyed Sir Francis to Scotland, it was to his puniſhment; for he fell there on July 27th, 1585, in a border fray.

A FULL-LENGTH of Henry Danvers, [Note: HENRY DANYVERS EARL OF DANEY.] created baron Dauntſey by James I. and earl of Danby by Charles I; a full-length, by Vandyck. His beard ſquare and yellow; his jacket black; over that a red mantle, furred and laced with gold. His rich armour lies by him. Near him is written Omnia praecepi. He was ſon of Sir John Danvers of Dauntſey, in Wiltſhire, by Elizabeth, daughter and co-heir of John Nevil lord Latimer *. His elder brother, Sir Charles Danvers, loſt his head for his concern in Eſſex's inſurrection. James, who on all occaſions teſtified his reſpect to that unhappy nobleman, countenanced every family who ſuffered in his cauſe; accordingly, had Danvers reſtored in blood. Beſides a peerage, he made him governor of Guernſey for life. Charles promoted him to an earldom, and created him knight of the Garter. He paſſed his life as a ſoldier, under Maurice prince of Orange, in the Low Countries; under Henry IV. in France; and under the earl of Eſſex and lord Monjoy, in Ireland . At length, in 1644, died, as his epitaph ſays, at his houſe of Cornbury Park, Oxfordſhire, full of honor, wounds (verified in the portrait, by a great patch on his forehead) and days, in the ſeventy-firſt year of his age. Beſides his military glory, we may add that of founding the phyſic-garden at Chelſea, in 1632; purchaſing for that [Page 371] uſe the ground, (once the Jews cemetery) and incloſing it with a wall and beautiful gate, at the expence of five* thouſand pounds.

AN earl of Rutland, a full-length, in a rich ſlowered jacket, [Note: AN EARL OF RUTLAND.] red full ſkirts, a ſingle laced ruff, ſhort hair and beard, brown boots: a plumed helmet near him. He wears the honor of the George. From his boots (a faſhionable part of dreſs in the time of James I. and Charles I.) I ſuſpect him to be Francis earl of Rutland, who commanded the fleet which convoyed Charles, when prince of Wales, in his return from his romantic expedition into Spain. This nobleman died in 1632.

Giles, the third lord Chandos, in a high-crowned hat, [Note: GILES LORD CHANDOS.] white jacket, black gown laced with ſilver, ſhort hair and beard.

Aet. 43, 1589. He died in 1594.

HIS lady, Frances, daughter of the firſt earl of Lincoln, in a great ruff, [Note: HIS LADY.] a black dreſs rich in pearls; aet. 37, 1589: lived till the year 1623.

LADY Anne Ayſcough, eldeſt daughter of the firſt earl of Lincoln, [Note: LADY ANNE AYSCOUGH.] and wife to William Ayſcough, ſon to Sir Francis Ayſcough, of Lincolnſhire.

A HEAD of Catherine, youngeſt daughter to the treaſurer, [Note: CATHERINE COUNTESS OF SALISBURY.] earl of Suffolk, and wife to William earl of Saliſbury. She is in a flowered dreſs; her ruff worked with gold; and her breaſts naked.

THE head of her infamous ſiſter, Anne counteſs of Somerſet, [Note: COUNTESS OF SOMERSET.] is placed over one of the doors, dreſſed in black, ſtriped with white, and her ruff and ruffles ſtarched with yellow. This faſhion ſoon [Page 372] expired; for her bawd and creature, Mrs. Turner, went to Tyburn in a yellow ruff, and put the wearers out of conceit with it. I need not enlarge on the well-known marriage and divorce of this lady from the earl of Eſſex. They are too well known to be inſiſted on; as is her weakneſs, in having recourſe to the impoſtor Forman for philtres to debilitate Eſſex, and impel the affections of Somerſet towards her. Her wickedneſs, in procuring the death of Overbury, who obſtructed this union; her ſudden fall, and confeſſion of guilt on her trial, need no repetition. Her earl avowed his innocency; he had been more covert in his proceedings. Her paſſions were more violent, her reſentments greater, and, of courſe, her caution leſs. They both obtained an unmerited pardon, or rather reprieve, being confined in the Tower till the year 1622, and then confined, by way of indulgence, in the houſe of lord Wallingford. The little delicacy which people of rank too frequently ſhew, by countenancing the vices of their equals, was conſpicuous at this time. The counteſs felt their pity, and was viſited even by the ſtern Anne Clifford. Somerſet lived with his lady, after their confinement, with the ſtrongeſt mutual hatred: the certain conſequence of vicious aſſociations. He died in the year 1645*: ſhe, before him. In her end may be read a fine leſſon on the vengeance of Providence on the complicated wickedneſs of her life. It may be held up as a mirror to poſterity, perſuaſive to virtue, and teach that Heaven inflicted a finite puniſhment on the criminal, in mercy to her, and as a warning to future generations. I give the relation (filthy as it is) in the [Page 373] Appendix; but hope the utility of the moral will excuſe the groſſneſs of the tale.

IN this gallery is a full-length of a nobleman, in a black jacket, double ruff, brown boots, and a ſtick in his hand: armour by him: a manly figure, with ſhort black hair and ſquare beard: miſcalled Car earl of Somerſet, this lady's huſband. I forget whether the print among the illuſtrious heads, (vol. ii. 19.) was not copied from this. But Car was a perſon of effeminate features, and light hair.

A PORTRAIT of a very different character follows, in the head of lady Cook, [Note: LADY COOK.] dated 1585, aet. 44. She has on a quilled ruff; is dreſſed in black, richly ornamented with pearls. I apprehend this lady to have been the wife of the ſon of Sir Anthony Cook, one of the tutors to Edward VI. and diſtinguiſhed by being father to five daughters, the wonders of their age for intellectual accompliſhments.

Margaret counteſs of Cumberland, [Note: MARGARET COUNTESS OF CUMBERLAND.] is dreſſed much like the former. She was youngeſt daughter to the firſt Francis earl of Bedford, and wife to the celebrated George Clifford earl of Cumberland *.

LADY Bindloſs, wife to Sir Francis Bindloſs, of Berwick, [Note: LADY BINDLOSS.] near Lancaſter, and daughter to Thomas, third lord Delawar.

LADY Wimbledon, wife of lord Wimbledon.

Chriſtiana, daughter to Edward lord Bruce, of Kinloſs, [Note: LADY WIMBLEDON.] and wife to the ſecond William earl of Devonſhire; a ſmall head. [Note: CHRISTIANA COUNTESS OF DEVONSHIRE.] with long hair: her dreſs white. This lady, who is leſs talked of than [Page 374] others, was by far the moſt illuſtrious character of the age in which ſhe lived. Her virtues, domeſtic and public, were of the moſt exalted kind. Hoſpitality, charity, and piety, were in her pre-eminent. I ſpeak not of her great maternal cares; nature dictates that, more or leſs, in all the ſex: but her abilities in the management of the vaſt affairs of her family, perplexed with numberleſs litigations, gave her a diſtinguiſhed character. She at left equalled her lord in loyalty, and was indefatigable in inciting the nobility, who had quitted the cauſe of majeſty, to expiate their error. After the battle of Worceſter, ſhe lived three years in privacy at her brother's houſe at Ampthill, and had correſpondence with ſeveral great perſonages, on the ſubject of reſtoring the exiled king. The reſerved Monk had ſuch an opinion of her prudence, as to communicate to her the ſignal by which ſhe might know his intentions on that ſubject. She lived in high eſteem, to a very advanced age; died in 1674, and was interred by her beloved lord, at Derby.

IT is no wonder that ſo illuſtrious a character ſhould attract the powers of the poets. She had the honor of being celebrated by one equal in rank to her own. That accompliſhed nobleman William earl of Pembroke, wrote ſeveral poems to her, and dedicated a collection of them to her. ‘There is wit and eaſe in ſeveral; but a great want of correction, and often of harmony. The following is the leſt faulty*;’ the ſubject,

[Page 375]

1.2.1. That he would not be beloved.

Diſdain me ſtill, that I may ever love;
For who his love enjoys can love no more:
The war once paſt, with peace men cowards prove,
And ſhips return'd, do rot upon the ſhore.
Then tho' thou frown, I'll ſay thou art moſt fair,
And ſtill I'll love, tho' ſtill I muſt deſpair.
As heat to life, ſo is deſire to love;
For theſe once quench'd, both life and love are done.
Let not my ſighs nor tears thy virtue move;
Like baſeſt metals, do not melt too ſoon:
Laugh at my woes, although I ever mourn:
Love ſurfeits with rewards; his nurſe is ſcorn.

FROM Woburn, for the ſake of variety, I left the great road, and, croſſing the county, went through the village of Ridgemont, and, ſoon after, through that of Millbrook, whoſe church is pleaſantly ſeated on the bluff point of a hill. About two miles farther, reach Ampthill, a ſmall market-town, [Note: AMPTHILL.] on a riſing ground, noted in old times for the magnificent manſion built by lord Fanhope, as Leland ſays, with ſuch ſpoiles that he wanne in Fraunce *. It had four or five fair towers of ſtone in the inner ward, beſide the baſſe court. It was worthy the princeſs for whom it is ſuppoſed he built it, Elizabeth dutcheſs of Exeter, and ſiſter to Henry IV. This hero was ſon of Sir John Cornwall: [Note: LORD FANHOPE.] his mother, niece to the duke of Britany, who was delivered of him at ſea. He was uſually ſtiled green Cornwall, from the color of that element. He roſe by his merit; was celebrated for deeds of arms and acts of chivalry, and thoſe equally [Page 376] in the field, and in the liſts of arms. At York he fought and vanquiſhed, in the preſence of Henry IV. two valiant knights; one a Frenchman, the other an Italian. In reward for his proweſs, Henry created him knight of the Garter. He ſignalized himſelf at the battle of Azincourt, where he took priſoner Louis de Bourbon count of Vendome, and had his ranſom confirmed to him*, with which he might have built the houſe; for it ſeems to be the ſpoiles alluded to by Leland. In reward for his ſervices, he was created by Henry VI. baron of Fanhope and Millbrook; and died in 1443. He had no lawful iſſue; neither were the large grants made to him by the crown, for more than term of life; ſo that they reverted on his deceaſe.

THE place was afterwards beſtowed by Edward IV. on Edmund lord Grey. The gift was not (as Leland ſuppoſes) founded on the ruin of lord Fanhope, after the battle of Northampton; for that event did not take place till ſeventeen years after Fanhope died peaceably in his bed. It continued in the family of the Greys till the death of Richard earl of Kent, who made it over to Henry VIII. That prince added it to the crown, and erected it, with the great eſtate belonging to it, into the honour of Ampthill . Here was the reſidence of the injured princeſs Catherine of Arragon, during the period that her divorce was in agitation; and from hence ſhe was cited to appear before the commiſſioners, then ſitting at Dunſtable . About the year 1774, John earl of [Page 377] Oſſory, on the ſite of the caſtle, erected a gothic column (deſigned by Mr. Eſſex) to perpetuate the memory of this ill-fated queen, with the following elegant inſcription:

In days of old, here Ampthill's towers were ſeen,
The mournful refuge of an injur'd queen;
Here flow'd her pure, but unavailing tears;
Here blinded zeal ſuſtain'd her ſinking years:
Yet Freedom hence her radiant banner wav'd,
And Love aveng'd a realm by prieſts enſlav'd;
From Catherine's wrongs a nation's bliſs was ſpread,
And Luther's light from Henry's lawleſs bed.

Johannes Fitz-Patrick,

Comes de OSSORY, poſuit, 1773.

THE only remarkable thing I obſerved in the church, [Note: CHURCH.] was a mural monument in memory of Richard Nicolls, governor of Long Iſland after the expulſion of the Dutch. He was a gentleman of the bed-chamber to the duke of York, and was ſlain in the celebrated engagement of May 28th, 1672, attending his royal highneſs on board of his ſhip. What is ſingular in this monument is, the preſervation of the very ball with which he was killed, a five or ſix pounder; which is placed within the pediment, inlaid in the marble; and on the molding of the pediment, on each ſide of the bullet, are the words, ‘Inſtrumentum mortis et immortalitis.’

MR. Sandford * has given a plate of the figures of Sir John [Page 378] Cornwal and his wife, as painted in a window of this church. They are either loſt, or I have overlooked them. They are repreſented kneeling, and both with mantles of their arms over them: ſhe in her ducal coronet. Between them, at top, is a banner with her arms; at bottom, his arms included in the Garter.

FROM the town I deſcended to Ampthill Park, [Note: AMPTHILL PARK.] the ſeat of the earl of Oſſory: a modern houſe, plain and neat, with eleven windows in front, and wings. Within, is the portrait of Richard lord Gowran, in his robes: he was anceſtor to the noble owner, and married, in 1718, to Anne, younger daughter of Sir John Robinſon of Farming Wood, in Northamptonſhire, her anceſtor. Sir John Robinſon's portrait is preſerved here: a half-length, in a great wig, cravat, ſaſh, and buff coat. He was an eminent loyaliſt; was lord mayor of London in 1663, and lieutenant of the Tower, from the Reſtoration to the time of his death. His double employ is expreſſed by a diſtant view of the Tower, and the gold chain placed by him on a table.

THE indiſcreet prelate Laud, is admirably painted by Vandyck.

HERE is a full-length of Catherine Cornaro, [Note: CATHERINE CORNARO.] queen of Cyprus: a bulky woman, in black, with flaxen hair, much curled. This diſtinguiſhed female was daughter to Mark Cornaro, the moſt illuſtrious of the Venetian families. James Luſignan, or James the Baſtard, king of Cyprus, in order to ſtrengthen himſelf in his throne, demanded, by his ambaſſador, a wife out of the republic of Venice. The ſenate fixed on this lady, adopted her as their own, and ſtiled her, from its tutelar ſaint, the daughter of St. Mark. She reigned long in that iſland, and governed fifteen [Page 379] years after the death of her huſband. He had left the ſenate of Venice protectors of her, and the child with which ſhe was pregnant at the time of that event. The infant ſon lived only ten months; and the Venetian ſtate conſidered itſelf as heir to the kingdom, in right of its daughter Catherine. Apprehenſions aroſe, that the Turkiſh emperor Bajazet, and the Chriſtian monarch Ferdinand, had deſigns on it: they determined to fruſtrate both, and ſent George Cornaro, brother to the queen, to aſſiſt her in the government. By his eloquence, he ſucceeded in the arduous taſk of perſuading a lady out of her love of power. He promiſed her regal ſtate in her native county. She accepted the terms, and erected the Venetian ſtandard in her capital; and, on her arrival at Venice, was met by the whole ſenate, and the ladies of rank, and received, during life, every mark of eſteem which her patriotiſm merited; with a magnificent eſtabliſhment, equal to the dignity ſhe had ſo generouſly quitted. This event happened about the year 1489*.

Albert archduke of Auſtria, commonly called the Cardinal Infant, [Note: CARDINAL INFANT.] in black, a great ruff, and with a ſword. He was fifth ſon of the emperor Maximilian II. and was originally brought up in the church; became cardinal, and had the archbiſhopric of Toledo conferred on him. His talents were more fitted for the field and cabinet. Accordingly, we find him in univerſal eſteem, for his prudent adminiſtration as regent of Portugal; and a brave and enterprizing general in the Low Countries, in the reign of Philip II. who had inveſted him with their government. In the [Page 380] year 1598, Philip beſtowed on him his daughter, the infanta Iſabella, and with her the ſovereignty of the Netherlands. Under him was undertaken the famous ſiege of Oſtend, which coſt the Spaniards a hundred thouſand men. He lived till the year 1621, and died univerſally lamented by his ſubjects. He was a patron of the arts. He was ſo ſtruck with the merit of Rubens, that he detained that able painter ſome time at Antwerp; and to him we owe the portrait of this illuſtrious prince*.

HERE is a fine half-length of a general, by Baroccio; an artiſt who died at a great age, in 1612. The perſon is repreſented with light hair and whiſkers, a hat, armour, and red ſaſh.

A CONVERSATION; conſiſting of Edward late duke of York, lord Oſſory, lord Palmerſton, Topham Beauclerk, colonel H. St. John, and Sir William Boothby: done when they were at Florence, by Brompton.

Ampthill Park, and that of Houghton, contiguous to it, were granted by James I. to Sir Edward Bruce of Kinloſs (a favorite, brought by his majeſty out of Scotland) or to his ſon Thomas earl of Elgin. It continued for ſome time in his poſterity, earls of Elgin and of Ayleſbury. It became, about the year 1690 (by purchaſe) the property of lord Aſhburnham, who built the houſe; which ſtill retains nearly the original form. It was alienated by John, the firſt earl of that title, between the years 1720 and 1730, to lord viſcount Fitz-William. His lordſhip ſold it, in the year 1736, to lady Gowran, grandmother to the preſent lord Oſſory.

Figure 1. HOUGHTON.

THE portico and loggio are of ſtone, and ornamented with [Page 382] columns of the Doric and Ionic orders: the reſt of the houſe is of brick. The fronts are unequal; one being a hundred and twenty-two feet in extent; the other, only ſeventy-three feet ſix inches.

THE houſe and manor were purchaſed by the late duke of Bedford, from Charles earl of Ayleſbury, and with it the ſtewardſhip of the honor of Ampthill, hold under the crown.

THIS place muſt not be confounded with Houghton Conqueſt: [Note: HOUGHTON CONQUEST.] a very antient houſe, at the foot of the hill. This had been the property of the very old family of the Conqueſts, and was purchaſed, with the manor, from the laſt Mr. Conqueſt, by the late earl of Oſſory.

I DID not leave the neighborhood without viſiting the church of Maulden, [Note: TOMBS IN MAULDEN CHURCH.] a mile or two to the eaſt of Ampthill. This is noted for the octagonal mauſoleum erected by Thomas Bruce earl of Elgin, in honor of his ſecond wife Diana, daughter of William lord Burgbly, and by her firſt huſband counteſs of Oxford. Her tomb, of white marble, is placed in the center. On it is a ſarcophagus, or at leſt what was deſigned to repreſent one; out of which riſes a miſerable figure of the counteſs in her ſhroud: on whom the country people, by a very apt ſimilitude, have beſtowed the title of The lady in the punch-bowl. In a niche in the wall of the building is the buſt of her huſband, with long hair, a ſhort beard, and turnover; and on the floor is another buſt (I think) of her ſon-in-law, Robert earl of Elgin, placed at a reſpectable diſtance, as well as the other, for the reaſon given in the inſcription, Eminus ſtantes venerabundi, quaſi contemplabuntur *.

[Page 383] IN the church are the braſſes of Richard Faldo and his family, inlaid on a tomb of ſhell-marble.

AFTER a ſhort ride, I reached the large houſe of Wreſt, ſeated in a low and wet park, croſſed with formal rows of trees. The pleaſure-grounds have, ſince their firſt creation, been corrected by Brown: his hand appears particularly in a noble ſerpentine river. Several parts are graced with obeliſks, pavilions, and other buildings, the taſte of the age before.

From his melon-ground the peaſant ſlave
Had rudely ruſh'd, and levell'd Merlin's cave.

In the quarters of the wilderneſs are to be ſeen two cenotaphs, for the late duke and dutcheſs, erected by the duke himſelf: and, if you gain a ſteep aſcent, from the hill-houſe is a moſt extenſive view of the country. The front is plain and extenſive. Within, is a great court. This place is the property of the earl of Hardwick, in right of his lady Jemima, marchioneſs Grey, daughter to John earl of Breadalbane, by Amabel; daughter to Henry Grey, thirteenth earl and firſt duke of Kent of the name. That illuſtrious family had been poſſeſſed of the manor of Wreſt, and other eſtates in this county, at leſt from the time of Roger de Grey, who died owner of it in the year 1353.

THE portraits and their hiſtory would take up a volume. I muſt, therefore, be excuſed for giving a more brief account than their merits might demand.

IN the hall is a full-length of the unfortunate Mary queen of Scots, [Note: PORTRAITS.] aet, reg. 38, 1580, in black, with her hand on a table: a copy from one at Hampton Court.

[Page 384] ANOTHER of her grandmother, Margaret, daughter of Henry VII. and queen of James IV. of Scotland. Another full-length, in black hair, naked neck, with a marmoſet in her hands.

THREE very fine portraits of James I. in his robes. [Note: JAMES I.] Anne of Denmark, [Note: ANNE OF DENMARK.] in white; dreſſed in a hoop, with a feather fan, and neck expoſed. Their ſon Henry, in rich armour, boots, and with a truncheon. His military turn appears in the dreſs of moſt of his portraits. Had he lived, England might probably have transferred the miſeries of war to the neighboring kingdom. His mother had inſpired him with ambitious notions, and filled his head with the thoughts of the conqueſt of France. She fancied him like Henry V. and expected him to prove as victorious. I am ſorry to retract the character of this lady; but I fear that my former was taken from a paraſite of the court*. She was turbulent, reſtleſs, and aſpiring to government; incapable of the management of affairs, yet always intriguing after power. This her wiſer huſband denied her, and of courſe incurred her hatred. Every engine was then employed to hurt his private eaſe: ſhe affected amours, of which ſhe never was guilty, and permitted familiarities, which her pride would probably have never condeſcended to. James was armed with indifference. At length, in 1619, he ſaw her deſcend to the grave; but not with the reſignation of a good Chriſtian monarch, as might have been expected from her conduct.

LORD SOMERS, in a long wig and his chancellor's robes, ſitting.

[Page 385] A PERSON unknown; a full-length, in a black cloak laced with gold, laced bonnet, triple gold chain.

OVER the chimney is a copy of the Cornaro family.

IN the eating-room is a full-length of Philip baron of Wharton, [Note: PHILIP EARL OF WHARTON.] with long hair, breaſt-plate, and truncheon, and boots; aet. 26, 1639. This nobleman took part with the parlement in the civil wars. Mr. Grainger relates, that at the battle of Edgehill he hid himſelf in a ſaw-pit: a fact incredible, as he gave a very clear account of the battle, in a long ſpeech in Guildhall *. He ſurvived long, and in 1677 was ſent to the Tower, for doubting the legality of one of Charles's parlements, after a receſs of fifteen months.

LADY Rich, in black. This is, I ſuſpect, [Note: LADY RICH.] the lady who was married by Laud to Charles Blount earl of Devonſhire, during the life of her firſt huſband, Robert lord Rich, afterwards earl of Warwick. She was daughter to Walter Devereux earl of Eſſex: and had been addreſſed by Blount while he was a younger brother, and ſhe favored his paſſion. Her friends broke off the match, and married her to a very diſagreeable ſuitor, her firſt lord. When Blount, after ſome years abſence in the Iriſh wars, returned laden with glory, and, by the death of his elder brother, honored with the title of Mountjoy, he commenced a criminal connection with his former miſtreſs. She was fully and legally divorced from lord Rich. Blount, now earl of Devonſhire, determined to make her reparation, and perſuaded Mr. Laud, then his chaplain, to marry them. In thoſe days this was looked on as ſo high a crime, that king [Page 386] James was for ſeveral years extremely averſe to the beſtowing any preferment on him: and Laud himſelf had ſuch a ſenſe of his fault, as to keep an annual faſt on the unlucky day ever after. Theſe two pictures were painted by Vandyck, and part of the Wharton collection; bought by Sir Robert Walpole, and ſold after his death.

LORD CHANCHELLOR Hardwich, in his robes, by Hoare: a character ſuperior to my pen.

HIS ſon, the preſent earl, by Gainſborough.

ON the ſtair-caſe is Henry ſeventh earl of Kent, a full-length, in black. Elizabeth, daughter of Gilbert earl of Shrewſbury, is painted in the ſame color, with a ruff, flaxen frizzled hair, and a great black egret. He died in 1639; ſhe, in 1651.

HIS ſucceſſor Anthony, grandſon of Anthony, third ſon of George earl of Kent, is drawn in black, with his hand on a book: a meagre perſonage. He was ſurprized with the peerage at his parſonage of Burbach, in the county of Leiceſter, where he lived in hoſpitality, and the full diſcharge of that great character, a good pariſh-prieſt. He was ſummoned to parlement, but preferred the duty to which he was firſt called*; never would forſake his flock, and was buried among them in 1643.

HIS wife, Magdalene Purefoy, is repreſented a half-length, ſitting, with a book in her hand, and a long motherly black peaked coif on her head.

Amabella, [Note: AMABELLA COUNTESS OF KENT.] ſurnamed, from her ſuper-eminent virtues, The good counteſs of Kent, is drawn in black and ermine, full curled hair, [Page 387] and a kerchief over her neck; aet. 60, 1675: by Lely. She was ſecond wife to Henry, ſon and ſucceſſor to the parſon of Burbach, and daughter to Sir Anthony Ben of Surrey. Her epitaph ſpeaks her deſerts*.

HER huſband is in his robes, with a ſmall beard and whiſkers, painted by Gloſterman; aet. 53, 1643. He died in 1651.

THEIR ſon, Anthony earl of Kent, and his lady, Mary, daughter and ſole heir to John lord Lucas; both in their robes: by Lely. The date to his portrait is 1681, aet. 36. He died in Auguſt 1702; ſhe, in November, in the ſame year.

THE old dining-room is moſt curiouſly furniſhed: mock pilaſters finiſhed with ſtripes of velvet, and worked ſilk feſtoons between each. This is ſaid to have been done for the reception of Anne of Denmark.

IN this apartment is the portrait of that eminent ſtateſman and honeſt man Sir William Temple: a copy from one by Lely; yet a moſt beautiful picture. He is placed ſitting, and looking towards you, in a red veſt; his hair long, black, and flowing; his whiſkers ſmall. In his hand is the triple alliance: the greateſt act of his patriotic life; but ſoon fruſtrated by the profligate miniſtry of the time.

IN the chapel-cloſet is the glory of the name, lady Jane Gray, [Note: LADY JANE GRAY.] the ſweet accompliſhed victim to the wickedneſs of her father-in-law, and the folly of her father. Her perſon was rather plain; but that was amply recompenſed by her intellectual charms. She was miſtreſs of the Greek and Latin tongues; verſed in Hebrew, [Page 383] Chaldee, Arabic, French, and Italian; ſkilled in muſic; and excellent at her needle. I have ſeen in the library at Zurich ſeveral of her letters, wrote in a moſt beautiful hand, to Bullenger, on the ſubject of religion; and a toilet, worked with her own hand, is preſerved there with great reverence. She fell at the age of ſeventeen. Could there be wanting any proof of her amazing fortitude, it was ſupplied near her laſt moments with the moſt invincible one: — As ſhe was paſſing to the ſcaffold (whether by accident, or whether by the moſt cruel intention) ſhe met the headleſs body of her beloved huſband. A line in Greek, to the following purpoſe, was her conſolation: ‘That if his lifeleſs body ſhould give teſtimony againſt her before men, his moſt bleſſed ſoul ſhould give an eternal proof of her innocence in the preſence of GOD.’

THE dreſs of this ſuffering innocent is, a plain white cap, a handkerchief, faſtened under her arms, and a black gown: a book in her hand.

IN the ſame room is the picture of Banaſter lord Maynard, [Note: BANASTER LORD MAYNARD.] who had married a daughter of this houſe.

A PORTRAIT of the valiant Sir Charles Lucas, by Dobſon: a half-length, in armour, fine ſaſh, long hair. He was barbarouſly ſhot to death, at Colcheſter, after quarter given; and for a reaſon that ſhould have endeared him to a ſoldier—the vigorous defence made by the garriſon.

HIS niece, Mary Lucas, ſole heireſs to his elder brother lord Lucas, married to Anthony earl of Kent.

SIR Anthony Ben, in hoary ſhort hair, quilled ruff, red dreſs faced with black.

HIS lady, in black, a kerchief, and curled hair. Theſe were parents to the good counteſs.

[Page 389] IN the paſſage is a moſt curious portrait of lady Suſanna Grey, [Note: LADY SUSANNA GREY.] daughter to Charles earl of Kent, and wife to Sir Michael Longueville. She was a celebrated workwoman; and the dreſs in which ſhe is drawn is ſaid to have been a wedding-ſuit of her own doing. This is the lady who is fabled to have died of the pricking of her finger with the needle, and who is ſhewn as ſuch in Weſtminſter abbey. She looks as pale as if the fact was true. Her gown is finely flowered; her petticoat white and ſtriped; her robe lined with ermine; her veil vaſt and diſtended; her wedding-ring hanging from her wriſt by a ſilken ſtring.

IN another room is the portrait of Sir Randle Crew, in a bonnet, [Note: SIR RANDLE CREW.] ruff, gold chain, and robes, as lord chief juſtice of the King's Bench: a dignity he filled with credit in the laſt year of James I. and firſt of Charles I. He had the honor of being diſplaced in 1626, for his diſapprobation of the impriſonment of thoſe gentlemen who refuſed the arbitrary loan propoſed by the court. He diſcovered, ſays Fuller, no more diſcontentment at his diſcharge, than a weary traveller is offended at being told that he is arrived at his journey's end*. He lived many years, in great hoſpitality, in Weſtminſter: he purchaſed the eſtate of the Falſhurſts of Crew, in Cheſhire; built the magnificent ſeat of Crew Hall; and was the firſt who brought the model of good building into that diſtant county. He died in 1642. He was the ſon of John Crew of Nantwich, and the anceſtor of the preſent flouriſhing family.

[Page 390] THE next portrait is that of his younger brother Sir Thomas Crew, [Note: SIR THOMAS CREW.] in red robes, and a coif as king's ſerjeant. He was among the moſt active ſupporters of the rights of the commons in the reign of James I. The king, under pretence of redreſſing certain matters in Ireland, ſent him, and ſeveral of the moſt obnoxious members, into that kingdom, with proper commiſſions*. In 1623 he was choſen ſpeaker, and made a ſpeech, which his majeſty heard with no more patience than approbation; yet, by his lord keeper, thanked him for ſeveral parts of it. He was again ſpeaker to the firſt parlement of Charles I. and died in February 1633, aged ſixty-eight. By his marriage with Temperance, fourth daughter of Reginald Bray, Eſquire, he obtained the manor of Stene, in Northamptonſhire; which became the ſettlement of him and his poſterity, till it devolved to this houſe, by the marriage of Henry duke of Kent with Jemima, eldeſt daughter of Thomas lord Crew.

HIS ſon, [Note: JOHN LORD CREW.] John lord Crew, is repreſented in his baronial robes, with long grey hair, and a ſmall coif. He was created lord Crew of Stene, in 1661, having been active in promoting the Reſtoration, and freeing his country from the confuſed government it had long labored under. No one was more active in defence of the liberties of his country, in the beginning of the troubles of the former reign, than himſelf. He had been member for Northamptonſhire in the long parlement; was chairman to the committee of religion; and was committed to the Tower, for refuſing to deliver up the petitions and complaints. He was [Page 391] nominated one of the commiſſioners for the treaty of Uxbridge: he was one of thoſe entruſted with the receipt of the king's perſon from the Scots, and the conveying him to Holmby Houſe. He again acted as commiſſioner in the treaty of the Iſle of Wight; and finally, was ſo far in the favor of the uſurper, as, in 1657, to be conſtituted one of the ſixty which formed the upper houſe of his mock parlement*. The game being ſoon over, he conciliated himſelf to the approaching change, and proved ſo active an inſtrument in the Reſtoration, as not only to make amends for his paſt demerits, but to obtain, in 1661, the honor of baron of Stene. He died in 1679, after attaining the good old age of eighty-two.

HIS wife Jemima, daughter of Edward Walgrave of Lawford, in Eſſex, is ſitting, in black, and a great black hood.

A VERY fine half-length of their ſon Thomas lord Crew, [Note: THOMAS LORD CREW.] in black, with long hair, and his hand on his breaſt, by Lely. In the old dining-room is another portrait of him, in his robes, dated 1680. He was father to Jemima, dutcheſs of Kent.

Nathaniel Crew, biſhop of Durham, fifth brother to the former. [Note: CREW BISHOP OF DURHAM.] He is in red robes faced with ermine, a turnover, and long hair; his countenance good. By the death of his brother, he became lord Crew. Never was any perſon of his time ſo ſubſervient to the will of his maſter, as this noble prelate. He was the moſt active member of the inquiſitorial commiſſion, eſtabliſhed by James II. to promote his wild deſigns in religious matters. Of the three biſhops joined in it, one declined acting; a third, [Page 392] ſtruck with his own imprudence, reſigned. Crew continued obſtinately ſervile, and ſuſpended thirty of his clergy for refuſing to come into the views of the court. Conſcious of his conduct, he fled out of the kingdom at the Revolution; but at length made his peace, and died in 1721, aged eighty-eight, after having been biſhop, and of Durham, forty-ſeven. His charity, it is to be hoped, has covered his multitude of political ſins. Oxford experienced largely of his bounty; and the navigators of the Northumberland ſea may bleſs his well-planned benevolence as long as tempeſts endure*.

A STRANGE picture of lady Harold, [Note: LADY HAROLD.] daughter to Thomas earl of Thanet; firſt married to lord Harold, the late duke of Kent's eldeſt ſon, and afterwards to the late earl Gower. She is dreſſed in the riding-habit of the time, a blue-and-ſilver coat, ſilver tiſſue waiſtcoat, a long flowing wig, and great hat and feather.

I FORGOT to mention, [Note: SECRETARY WALSINGHAM.] that in a bedchamber is a portrait of Secretary Walſingham, in a quilled ruff: the active, penetrating, able, and faithful ſervant of queen Elizabeth; the ſecurity of the kingdom as well as her own perſon. So attentive to the intereſts of his country, ſo negligent of his own, as to die (in 1590) ſo poor, as not to leave enough to defray his funeral expences.

A FINE portrait of Sir Nicholas Throgmorton: [Note: SIR NICHOLAS THROGMORTON.] his face thin, his beard black. At his girdle is a large ring to hold his handkerchief. Has a ſword and ſtilletto, and is graced with a gold chain and medal. He had a narrow eſcape in the time of queen Mary; being tried, and narrowly acquitted, for a ſuppoſed concern [Page 393] in Wiat's inſurrection. Was employed by Elizabeth in important embaſſies to France and Scotland. His abilities were great: his ſpirit was ſaid to have bordered on turbulence: his death, therefore, was eſteemed rather fortunate: it happened in 1570, at the table of Cecil; not without ſuſpicion of poiſon*: an end in thoſe days more frequently attributed than it ought to be.

THE mauſoleum of the Greys adjoins to the church of Flitton, [Note: FLITTON CHURCH.] about a mile and a half from the houſe. It conſiſts of a center and four wings. In one is the tomb of Henry fifth earl of Kent, [Note: TOMBS.] and his counteſs Mary, daughter of Sir George Cotton of Cumbermere, Cheſhire: both are in robes, and painted; both recumbent, with uplifted hands: his beard long and ſquare, his ruff quilled. This was the fiery zealot who fat in judgment on Mary Stuart, and, with the earl of Shrewſbury, was deputed to ſee execution done on the unhappy princeſs. They, with true bigotry, refuſed her the conſolation of her almoner in her laſt moments; and Kent had the brutality to give a moſt reluctant aſſent to her requeſt of having a few of her domeſtics to perform their final duties to their dying miſtreſs. Kent even burſt into the exclamation of ſaying, ‘Your life will be the death of our religion, and your death will be the life of it.’ A cauſe of triumph to Mary Stuart. He founded this building, and took poſſeſſion of it in the beginning of the year 1614. The tomb of the counteſs is a mere cenotaph; for ſhe was buried, in 1580, at Great Gaddeſden.

Henry earl of Kent, and his ſecond lady, the good counteſs, repoſe [Page 394] in another wing, with Juſtice, Temperance, and other Virtues, on each ſide. Both are repreſented in white marble, recumbent, and both in robes. His beard is ſmall, his lip whiſkered; one hand is on his breaſt, the other on his ſword. She is dreſſed in an ungraceful pair of ſlays; her hands before, holding her robes; her neck naked; her hair curled, and enormouſly buſhy. He died in 1651; ſhe finiſhed her excellent life in 1698, aged ninety-two.

AT one end is an inſcription of Elizabeth Talbot counteſsdowager of Kent, who died in 1651; and another to lady Jane. Hart, relict of Sir Euſtace Hart. Her figure is in white marble, in a reclining poſture.

ON the floor is a braſs of Henry Grey, ſecond ſon of Sir Henry Grey, Knight, in armour.

IN another appears Henry late duke of Kent, reclined on a ſarcophagus, in a Roman dreſs, in white marble, with a coronet in his hand. His Grace died in 1740. His firſt dutcheſs, Jemima Crew, is repreſented with her countenance looking up, and leaning on one ſide. Oppoſite to his Grace is a moſt amiable character of his ſecond lady, Sophia, daughter of William earl of Portland.

A MONUMENT of his ſon Anthony earl of Harold, in a Roman dreſs. He died in 1723. And near him is another ſon and a daughter of his Grace; but not one of the figures do any credit to the ſtatuary.

NEAR the altar, on the floor, is an admirable figure, in braſs, of an honeſt ſteward; a true Vellum in aſpect: in a laced nightcap, great ruff, long cloak, trunk breeches. This was Thomas Hill, receiver-general to three earls of Kent.

[Page 395]
Aſke how he lived, and you ſhall knowe his end:
He dyde a ſaint to GOD, to poore a friende.
Theſe lines men knowe doe truely of him ſtory,
Whom GOD hath cal'd, and ſeated now in glory.

He died May 26th. 128, aged 1601.

GRATITUDE forbids me from leaving this place without my acknowlegements to the Reverend Mr. Archdeacon Coxe, the worthy incumbent, for his great hoſpitality, and the various information he favored me with reſpecting theſe parts.

FROM hence I went ſouthwards, over a hilly and open country. Ride over Luton Downs, and reach Luton, a ſmall dirty town, [Note: LUTON.] ſeated on the Lea; remarkable for its church and tower-ſteeple, prettily chequered with flint and freeſtone. Within is a moſt remarkable baptiſterium, [Note: FINE FONT.] *, in form of an octagon, open at the ſides, and terminating in elegant tabernacle-work. In the top is a large baſon, in which the conſecrated water was kept, and let down by the prieſt into the font, by means of a pipe. On the top of the inſide is a vine, guarded by a lamb from the assaults of a dragon. The vine ſignifies the church, protected by baptiſm from the assaults of the devil.

ADJOINING to the church is a chapel, founded, as appears by the following lines, by John lord Wenlock:

JESU CHIRST, moſt of myght,
Have mercy on John le Wenlock, knight,
And of his wyffe Elizabeth,
Wch out of this world is paſt by death;
[Page 396]
Wch founded this chapel here.
Helpe them with yr harty praer;
That they may come to that place
Where ever is joy and ſolace*.

THIS lord Wenlock roſe in the reign of Henry VI; [Note: LORD WENLOCK.] was knighted, made conſtable of Bamburgh caſtle, and chamberlain to the queen. He acquired great wealth, and was able to lend his maſter a thouſand and thirty-three pounds ſix ſhillings and eight pence; for which he received an aſſignment of the fifteenth and tenth, granted by parlement in 1456; and ſoon after he was rewarded with being made knight of the Garter. He valiantly ſupported the royal cauſe at the firſt battle of St. Alban's, and was carried out of it dreadfully wounded; yet, with the fickleneſs of the times, he joined the duke of York, in 1459, and was of courſe attainted by the Lancaſtrian parlement. He fought valiantly in Towton field, and received, as recompence for his former loſs, the office of chief butler of England, and the ſtewardſhip of the caſtle and manor of Berkhamſtead; and was created a baron. He was employed by the Yorkiſts in ſeveral important embaſſies, and advanced to the great poſt of lieutenant of Calais. Notwithſtanding all theſe favors, he again revolted, and joined the earl of Warwick. to reſtore the depoſed Henry. He raiſed forces, and joined Margaret of Anjou, before the battle of Tewkeſbury. He was appointed by the general, John earl of Somerſet, to the command of what was called the middle ward of the army. When Somerſet, who led the van, found himſelf unſupported in [Page 397] the fierce attack he had made on the enemy, he returned, enraged, to ſee the cauſe. He found lord Wenlock, with his troops, ſtanding in the market-place. Whether a panic had ſeized him, or whether, through a mutability of mind, he was meditating a new revolt, does not appear; but the earl, unable to curb his fury, rode up, and with one blow of his battle-ax clove the ſkull of the ſuppoſed traitor*. He was interred at Tewkeſbury; and his tomb is ſtill to be ſeen in that noble church.

IN this chapel are ſeveral tombs: one very magnificent, in the altar-form, with a rich canopy, open beneath on each ſide. On the top various arms, ſome incloſed in a garter. On a wreath is a crest, a plume of feathers.

ON the tomb lie the effigies of William Wenlock, [Note: WILLIAM WENLOCK.] in the habit of a ſhaven prieſt: his hands cloſed as if in prayer; beads hang from them; and on a label from his mouth is a ſmall ſhield of a chevron, between three croſlet gules, and theſe words:

Salve Regina Mater miſerecordie
Jeſu fili Dei miſerere mei.

On the ſide which opens into the chapel is this inſcription:

In Wenlok brad I, in this toun lordſchipes had I.
Her am I now layed, Chriſtes moder helpe me, Lady.
Under thes ſtones, for a tyme, ſchal I reſte my bones.
Deye not I ned ones myghtful God graunt me thy wones.
Ave.

[Page 398] On the other ſide, in the chancel,

Wills ſic tumulatus de Wenlok natus
In ordine preſbyteratus.
Alter hujus ville: dominus Someris fuit ille
Hic licet indignus: anime Deus eſto benignus.

This William was prebend of Brownſwood prebendary, in the church of St. Paul's, London, in 1363; before which he had been rector of St. Andrew's, Holborn. In 1379, Richard II. made him cuſtos of the hoſpital of Farle, in Bedfordſhire. * He died in 1392, and was buried here, in purſuance of his will. By the garter, in which one of the coats of arms is included, it is evident that the tomb was erected by the founder of the chapel. This alſo directs us to the origin of lord Wenlock. It is moſt likely that his father was related to this prebend, and that he left his poſſeſſions to him; and that lord Wenlock, in the height of his proſperity, paid this oſtentatious compliment to the memory of his kinſman.

IN the middle is an altar-tomb of ſhell-marble, with the braſs plate of a woman.

IN the wall, beneath two arches, are the tombs, I think, of the Rotherhams, owners of this chapel after the Wenlocks. On one had been an inſcription to a Rotherham, who had married Catherine, daughter of a lord Grey; and was himſelf nephew to Scot, alias Rotherham, archbiſhop of York.

THE following odd medley of Engliſh and Latin, merits tranſcribing. It is on the tomb of John Ackworth, Eſquire, who died in 1513; and is repreſented here with his two wives, eight ſons, and nine daughters.

[Page 399]
O man, who eer thow be, timor mortis ſhulde trouble the;
For when thow beeſt wenyſt,
Veniet te
Mors ſuperare.
And ſo—grave grevys
Ergo mortem memorare
Jeſu mercy: Lady helpe: Jeſu mercy.

NEAR the altar is a large mutilated figure in the wall, in a prieſtly habit, with a paſtoral ſtaff, or a croſier, lying on him. He was an abbot, and probably of St. Alban's, for the abbots had a ſeat near this town *. The chancel appears to have been rebuilt by abbot Whethamſted; whoſe motto, VAL LES HA BUN DA BUNT VAL LES, is to be ſeen on the walls.

PART of this place was ſaid to have been beſtowed by king Offa on the monks of St. Alban's, Gilbert de Clare earl of Glouceſter, had the patronage of the church; which they bought from him in 1166, for eighty marks, and kept in their own hands, till they were compelled to appoint a vicar. The purchaſe was in the time of abbot Robert . It appears that this place, Houghton, and Poteſgrave, had been beſtowed on the monaſtery, for the ſupport of the kitchen for the gueſts. This is ſeen in the charter of confirmation, made by king John, in the firſt year of his reign .

The church is dedicated to St. Mary, and is a vicarage in the gift of the earl of Bute.

Luton Ho, the ſeat of that nobleman, lies near the London road; [Note: LUTON HO.] about three miles from the town. I lament my inability to [Page 400] record his taſte and magnificence; but alas! the uſeful, talent, Principibus placuiſſe viris, has been unfortunately denied to me. I muſt therefore relate the antient ſtory of the favored ſpot. In the twentieth of Edward I. it was poſſeſſed by Robert, * who took the addition of de Hoo, from the place; which ſignifies a high ſituation. His grandſon, Thomas, was created lord Hoo and Haſtings, by Henry VI. in 1447. He, if no miſtake is made in the account, ſettled two parts of the tithes on the abbey of St. Alban's, for the uſe of ſtrangers. Lord Hoo left only daughters. From one, who married Sir Geofry Bullen, was deſcended queen Elizabeth. I do not diſcover the time in which the tower in Luton Park was built. It is an antient ſtructure, of flint and Tottenhoe-ſtone intermixed.

ABOUT two miles to the north-eaſt of Luton Hoo, [Note: SOMMERIS.] is the village of Sommeris, where, as Leland informs us, lord Wenlock had begun ſumptuouſly a houſe, but never finiſhed it: that the gatehouſe of brick was very fair and large. The gateway and part of a tower are yet to be ſeen. In the laſt are fourteen or fifteen brick ſteps; and there was originally a hole, or rather pipe, which conveyed the loweſt whiſper from bottom to top. Part of this, and of the other building, was pulled down by Sir John Napier, about forty years ago. Leland alſo acquaints us, that theſe eſtates of lord Wenlock paſſed, by marriage of an heir general of his, to a relation of Thomas Scot, alias Rotherham, archbiſhop of York from 1480 to 1500: a prelate remarkable for nepotiſm, and the preferment of his kindred by marriage, and other ways . This family aſſumed the name of Rotherham, and flouriſhed here for ſome centuries. [Page 401] John was ſheriff of the county in the ſeventeenth of Edward IV. and others, in after-times, enjoyed the ſame honor *. Luton Hoe and this place became the property of the Napiers; from them they paſſed to Mr. Hearn, who ſold them to the earl of Bute.

FROM Luton I purſued my journey ſouthward: near the twenty-ſixth mile-ſtone, paſſed through the village of Hardin, or Harpedon, and by its chapel, dependent on Whethamſted. This manor belonged, in 1292, to Robert Hoo, and continued in his line till the death of Thomas lord Hoo and Haſtings, about the latter end of the reign of Henry VI; when it devolved to his three daughters . The manor was ſold ſoon after their marriages to Matthew Creſſy, in the time of Edward IV. It continued in his line till the reign of queen Elizabeth, when, by the marriage of a female deſcendant, it fell to the Bardolfs. Richard Bardolf ſold it to Sir John Witherong, created baronet in 1662; and it is now poſſeſſed by John Bennet, Eſquire.

ABOUT four miles from this village, paſſed through St. Peter's ſtreet, in ST. ALBAN'S, and turning towards the eaſt, after a ride of about five miles, reach the ſmall town of Hatfield, [Note: HATFIELD.] prettily ſeated on a gentle aſcent. Its Saxon name was Haethfeld, from its ſituation on a heath. The important ſynod, [Note: SYNOD.] held during the heptarchy, at the inſtance of Theodore, conſecrated archbiſhop of Canterbury in 668, in which the moſt intereſting tenets of Chriſtianity were declared and confirmed , is generally ſuppoſed [Page 402] to have been held at a place of the ſame name in Yorkſhire. Hatfield was part of the revenues of the Saxon princes, till it was beſtowed by Edgar on the monaſtery of Ely. At the time of the Conqueſt, it was found to be in the poſſeſſion of that great houſe; in which it continued, till that abbey was converted into a biſhopric, in the reign of Henry I. It then became one of the reſidences of the prelates; for they had not fewer than ten palaces belonging to the ſee *; and from that was called Biſhop's Halfield, to diſtinguiſh it from other places of the ſame name. It probably fell into decay during the long wars between the houſes of York and Lancaſter; for I find it was rebuilt and ornamented by biſhop Morton, in the reign of Henry VII. Among the ſhameful alienations made from the biſhopric of Ely, by queen Elizabeth (by virtue of the imprudent ſtatute, which gave her power of exchanges over all) muſt be included the manor of Hatfield. The palace had at times been an occaſional royal reſidence, notwithſtanding it was the property of the church. William, ſecond ſon of Edward III. was born here in 1335, and was called, from that circumſtance, William of Hatfield. Queen Elizabeth reſided here many years before ſhe came to the crown ; and, on the death of her predeceſſor, removed from hence, on the 23d of November, to take poſſeſſion of the throne. This place did not continue long a part of the royal demeſne. James I. in the fifth year of his reign, exchanged it for Theobalds, with his miniſter, Sir Robert Cecil, afterwards earl of Saliſbury; who built, [Page 403] on the ſite of the palace, the magnificent houſe now ſtanding; and incloſed two large parks, one for red, the other for fallow deer. At the bottom of the firſt was a vineyard, in being when Charles I. was conveyed there a priſoner to the army *.

THE building is of brick, and of vaſt extent; [Note: HOUSE.] in form of an half H. In the center is an extenſive portico of nine arches: over the middlemoſt riſes a lofty tower, on the front of which is the date 1611, and three ranges of columns, of the Tuſcan, Doric, and Compoſite orders. Between the ſecond are the arms of the family, in ſtone .

IN the chapel is a ſmall antient organ; [Note: CHAPEL.] a fine window of ſtained glaſs, in twelve compartments; and a gallery, on the front of which are painted the twelve apoſtles.

OVER the chimney-piece of the hall is a painting of a great clumſy grey horſe, [Note: HALL.] given by queen Elizabeth to Sir Robert: a ſign our breed was at that time far from excellent.

IN the common parlour are portraits of lord-treaſurer Burleigh and his ſon Robert, [Note: PORTRAITS OF THE CECILS.] the firſt earl, the founder of this houſe: both in robes, and with white ſtaves .

William ſecond earl of Saliſbury, in black, with long hair, a ſtar on his cloak, and the George, a dog by him. He was captain of the band of Gentlemen Penſioners to Charles I. privy counſellor and ambaſſador extraordinary to the court of France. He was one of thoſe characters who preferred his own ſafety to all other conſiderations. [Page 404] He had been in two reigns ſo ſupple a courtier, as to over-act every thing he was required to do. No act of power was ever propoſed, which he did not advance and execute with the utmoſt tyranny *; but, on the firſt appearance of danger, he deſerted his royal maſter, fled to the parlement, and ſubſcribed an engagement to be true to his new party, to whom he paſſively adhered; and, on the uſurpation, condeſcended to be a member in the uſurper's parlement. He ended his inglorious life in 1668, aged 78. This portrait, and that of his ſon, viſcount Cranbourn (who died in his father's life-time) are both by Lely.

Two children of the ſecond earl, careſſing a dog. Lely. Good.

A portrait, called the ſecond earl of Saliſbury, but probably lord Danby: the Garter on his ſhoulder; hand on a dog's head. Vandyck.

FOURTH earl, probably by Kneller; as are two others, called the fifth earl and lady; but probably lady Ranelagh, engraved by Faber, among the Hampton Court beauties.

James third earl of Saliſbury, a full-length, in his robes. Lely.

A head of Anne, daughter to the firſt earl, married to Algernon▪ earl of Northumberland.

Charles I. a full-length, [Note: CHARLES I.] in the dreſs in which he went into Spain, with the blue ribband tied under his arm, inſtead of being pendent: a mode of wearing begun in this reign. The hand remarkably fine. His picture at Gorhambury greatly reſembles this.

A half-length of a lady. Good.

[Page 405] IN the drawing-room is a portrait of the late earl of Thanet, [Note: EARL OF THANET.] in a long black wig. Another of his lady. They were maternal, grandfather and grandmother to the late earl of Saliſbury.

OVER the chimney a fine half-length of lady Latimer, by Lely. [Note: CURIOUS HISTORICAL PIECE.] IN the dreſſing-room is a picture, on board, uncommonly curious; a repreſentation of ſome of the amuſements of the court of Henry VIII. who often relaxed his ſavage diſpoſition in little progreſſes about the neighborhood of the metropolis. This ſeems to have been in the ſpring of 1533; for Halle ſays *, that ‘this ſeaſone the kynge kepte his progreſſe about London, becauſe of the quene;’ which means, on account of queen Anna Bullen's being then pregnant. Accordingly we ſee Henry, with his royal conſort , in the condition deſcribed, at a country wedding, fair, or wake, at ſome place in Surrey, within ſight of the Tower of London. In the back ground is an open room in a temporary building, with the table ſpread. At the entrance appears a man, ſeemingly Henry's favorite, Charles Brandon duke of Suffolk, inviting them in.

THERE are great numbers of other figures; many of which appear to have been portraits. In one group is a lady with a gold chain, between two men with white beards. The utmoſt feſtivity is exhibited. There are four fiddlers, and a number of dancers. Behind the king is his 'ſquire, carrying his dagger and buckler; and near Henry are a boy and a girl; perhaps the children of Charles Brandon, by the king's ſiſter, Mary dowager of France; for at this time Henry had only one child, Mary, afterwards [Page 406] queen of England, who was at this period older than the others repreſented in this picture.

OTHER figures are, a man on foot, with a buckler on his back: a yeoman of the guard, in red, with a roſe and crown on his breaſt: five figures on horſeback; the firſt with a hawk on his hand, and a portmanteau before him; the ſecond on a bay horſe, followed by a lady on horſeback; after her a cavalier with another lady behind him.

IN the room called King James's dining-room, is a bronze-colored ſtone ſtatue of that prince. The cieling is of rich old-faſhioned ſtucco.

Algernon Percy earl of Northumberland; his lady Anne, daughter of the ſecond earl of Saliſbury; and their daughter. Half-lengths, by Vandyck.

THE portrait of queen Elizabeth is extremely worth notice; [Note: QUEEN ELIZABETH.] not only becauſe it is the handſomeſt we have of her, but as it points out her turn to allegory and apt devices. Her gown is cloſe-bodied: on her head is a coronet and long aigret, and a long diſtended gauze veil: her face is young; her hair yellow, falling in two long treſſes; her neck adorned with a pearl necklace, her arms with bracelets. The lining of her robe is worked with eyes and ears, and on her left ſleeve is embroidered a ſerpent: all to imply wiſdom and vigilance. In the other hand is a rainbow, with this flattering motto, "Non ſine ſole IRIS."

IN the gallery, [Note: THE GALLERY.] which is a hundred and twenty feet long, are two vaſt marble chimney-pieces. The portrait furniture are, firſt, a curious half-length of the firſt earl of Saliſbury, in moſaic.

THE head of Laura, [Note: LAURA.] in a furred robe, with red ſleeves, reading. [Page 407] La belle Laure, the celebrated object of love with the virtuous and elegant Petrarch, for the ſpace of twenty-one years before, and twenty-ſix after her death; for he firſt ſaw Laura on April 6th, 1327. Their paſſion ſeems to have been of the ſeraphic kind. She devoted herſelf to religion, and perſuaded him to do the ſame. She died in the convent of the Cordeliers, in Avignon, April 6th, 1348: he, in 1374, in Italy, his native country; to which he had retired after the loſs of Laura. Her age was probably about forty; his ſeventy. Both of them became the ſubject of the fineſt pens for centuries after their deaths. Francis I. celebrates her memory in a beautiful epitaph. The tender and amorous earl of Surrey made them the ſubjects of two ſonnets *. He modeſtly yields the palm to Petrarch, but denies, the ſuperiority of beauty to Laura in preference to his miſtreſs, the fair Geraldine. The inſcription on this picture is, ‘LAURA fui. Viridèm RAPHAEL fecit, atque PETRARCHA.’

THE next portrait is on wood, [Note: MARGARET COUNTESS OF RICHMOND.] of a lady not leſs celebrated for her piety than the fair inhabitant of Vaucluſe; but it appears in a leſs amiable form, attended with high rank and great auſterity. Her virtues were of a nature fitted for the praiſe of biſhop Fiſher, not for the ſweet pen of the elegant Petrarch. Margaret counteſs of Richmond did not pique herſelf to far (virtuous as ſhe was) as to carry her paſſion for a ſingle object to the grave. The pious prelate gravely tells you, that ſhe accepted her firſt huſband, Edmund duke of Richmond, at the [Page 408] inſtance of St. Nicholas, patron of virgins, who appeared to her in a dream. We are not told at whoſe recommendation ſhe took Sir Henry Stafford and Thomas earl of Derby; for ſhe liked the ſtate matrimonial ſo well, as afterwards to accept both their hands. She ſignalized herſelf, during life, by her piety, charity, humility, and chaſtity. The firſt appeared in her rigorous attendance on the duties of the church, and her admittance into the fraternity of five religious houſes: the ſecond, in her noble foundations of Chriſt College and that of St. John, in Cambridge, beſides a number of other great deeds of charity: the third, in her declaration, that, ‘if the princes of Chriſtendom would undertake a cruſade, ſhe would chearfully be the laundreſs of the army:’ and then, for her chaſtity, in her laſt huſband's days ſhe obtained a licence from him to live chaſte, and took the vow of celibacy from biſhop Fiſher's hands, at the age of ſixty-four. For this reaſon ſhe is uſually painted in the habit of a nun, and here is repreſented veiled.

Richard III. [Note: RICHARD III.] a head. He is repreſented with three rings; one of which he is taking from or putting on his little finger.

A head of John Frobenius, [Note: FROBENIUS THE PRINTER.] by Holbein. He is dreſſed in a black gown lined with fur. Frobenius was a native of Franconia, but ſettled at Baſil, in Switzerland; of which city he became a citizen. He was a man of conſiderable learning, and the fineſt printer of his time. Eraſmus reſided a long time with him; attracted by his perſonal merit, and his admirable ſkill in his profeſſion: for to him we are indebted for the moſt beautiful edition of the works of his illuſtrious friend. Frobenius died in 1527, and was honored by the ſame hand with two epitaphs; one in Greek, the other in Latin.

[Page 409] Francois de Coligni, ſeigneur de Dandelot, a head. Rich armour, [Note: COLIONI SHIGNEUR DE DANDELOT.] ſhort hair, and peaked beard. He was youngeſt ſon of the firſt Gaſpar de Coligni, and colonel-general of the French infantry.

THREE dukes of Guiſe: one is Le Balafreè, [Note: DUKES OF GUISE.] or the ſlaſhed; ſo called from a ſcar on his left cheek, occaſioned by a wound he received in his face in the battle of Chateau-Thierri, againſt the Huguenots. He fell a victim to his turbulent diſpoſition, and his practices againſt the ſtate, on the 23d of December, 1588; being aſſaſſinated at Blois, by order of his prince, Henry III: the common fate, in that age, of ſuch great men who were grown too potent to be brought to juſtice by the ordinary means*.

LADY Burleigh, very old, blind, and decayed.

A FULL-LENGTH, on board, of Mary queen of Scots, in a long black mantle edged with white lace, [Note: MARY STUART.] and reaching to the ground; a ſmall gold crucifix; a croſs and roſary at her girdle; beads of gold richly wrought, and ſet with rubies. The inſcription, ‘ Maria D. G. Scotiae piiſſima regina, Franciae dotaria. Anno aetatis regnique 36. Anglicae captivitatis 10. S. H. 1573.’ reſembles that I have mentioned, in a former tour, on her whole-length portrait at Hardwick Houſe, in Derbyſhire.

A PORTRAIT of Charles Gerard, baron Gerard of Brandon, [Note: GERARD EARL OF MACCLESFIELD.] created earl of Macclesfield in 1679: died January 7th, 1694. He is dreſſed in black; a coif on his head, a turnover on his neck, grey hair and beard; his hand on his breaſt. He was a brave and ſucceſsful commander on the ſide of Charles in the civil wars: [Page 410] yet, notwithſtanding his zeal in the royal cauſe, he was one of the perſons who thought it his duty to preſent the duke of York, in the King's Bench, as a popiſh recuſant *; in which he thought he did his country equal ſervice as when he bled in the field in ſupport of regal authority.

Robert Dudley earl of Leiceſter, the unmerited favorite of queen Elizabeth. His hair and beard are repreſented grey; his gown black, his veſt white and gold. On his head is a bonnet: by him a white rod.

IN a lumber-room is a picture of Chriſtopher de Harlay count Beaumont, [Note: COUNT BEAUMONT.] ambaſſador from Henry IV. to queen Elizabeth, in her laſt year, and the firſt years of her ſucceſſor. He was a nobleman of great perſonal merit, and an able negociator. He died governor of Orleans, in 1615. He is painted as a tall thin man, in black, with white ſleeves, and a ruff. Aet. 34, 1605; the year in which he concluded his embaſſy

SIR Simon Bennet of Bechampton, [Note: SIR SIMON BENNET.] in the county of Bucks, knight. His dreſs is that of a magiſtrate, in a red gown furred, ornamented with a gold chain; ruff; high hat. Aet. 70, 1611. He died 1631, being uncle to Simon Bennet, who was his heir; and whoſe daughter, Frances, married James fourth earl of Saliſbury, and died 1713.

HIS lady, in a great ruff, red dreſs furred, gold chain, jewels on her breaſt, feather-fan ſet in ſilver.

Frederic P. la gra. de Dieu comte Palatin de Ryn, ſmall, in an ermined cap: in his hands two covered diſhes, with a napkin [Page 411] over them. I believe this prince to have been Frederic IV. father of the unfortunate Palatin king of Bohemia.

Henry VI. a head on board. There is another at Kenſington-palace, from which Vertue took his print.

Catherina de Cornara regina de Cipri, in black, with blue mantle, pearl necklace, and crowned. See the account of her, p. 378.

IN the chaplain's room is another portrait of queen Elizabeth, [Note: QUEEN ELIZABETH.] richly dreſſed in black. On the table is a great ſword, as if ſhe was ſitting ready to confer the honor of knighthood. A ſpotted ermine, with a crown on its head and collar round its neck, is repreſented running up the arm of her highneſs. This little beaſt, being an emblem of chaſtity*, is placed here as a compliment to the virgin queen.

SINCE this account of theſe pictures was taken, they have been differently arranged. I have the pleaſure to learn, that the houſe has undergone a complete repair, in the original ſtile, under the conduct of Mr. Donowell, the architect; the pictures have been repaired by Mr. Tomkins; the grounds diſpoſed in the modern taſte; a conſiderable tract of road is going to be removed to a proper diſtance from the park; and the ſplendor of this noble family is reviving with all the magnificence of the Cecils.

THE church is dedicated to St. Ethelreda. In an adjoining chapel is a beautiful monument to the firſt earl of Saliſbury; [Note: CHURCH.] who is repreſented in his robes, in white marble, lying on a ſlab of black, which is ſupported by the four cardinal [Page 412] Virtues, with their attributes. Beneath, is a ſkeleton, in white marble, lying on a well-counterfeited mat of the ſame, alſo placed on a ſlab of black marble.

IN the church is a monument of Sir John Brocket of Brocket Hall, knight, who died in 1598: and not far from him are the figures of two ladies: one is his firſt wife, Helen Litton; the other a younger figure, with a ſcull in her hand, repreſenting his ſecond lady, widow of Gabriel Fowler. Both lie on their ſides, one above the other.

FROM hence I continued my journey along the great road; [Note: GOBIONS.] paſſed by Gobions, in the pariſh of North Mims. It took its name from the old family of the Gobions, its antient lords, as early as the time of king Stephen. * The Mores afterwards poſſeſſed it for ſome generations. Sir John, the father of the celebrated Sir Thomas More, owned it in the reign of Henry VII; and it became the reſidence of that illuſtrious character till the time of his cruel ſacrifice; when the ſon was ſtripped of every part of his fortune, by the moſt arbitrary attainders. It reverted again to the family; but the grandſon of Sir Thomas, being ruined by the civil wars, ſold it to Sir Edward Deſbovery. It afterwards paſſed, by ſale, to Mr. Pitchford, and to Sir Jeremiah Sambroke. From his ſiſters it devolved to Mr. Freeman of Hammels; and was afterwards ſold to the preſent owner, Mr. Hunter.

NOT far from a place called Potters Bar (probably from ſome pottery, ſuch as is ſtill carried on at Woodſide, about two [Page 413] miles to the north, on the ſame road) I entered the county of MIDDLESEX: kept along the edge of Enfield Chace * to Hadley; paſſed through Cheping Barnet, and, in leſs than a mile beyond, quitted the great road at Pricklers Hill; again ſkirted the Chace, deſcended Winchmore Hill, and concluded the day's journey at my friend RICHARD GOUGH'S, Eſquire, at Enfield, the object of this little digreſſion.

THE New River, [Note: NEW RIVER.] the work of my illuſtrious countryman Sir Hugh Middleton (which on the north edge of this pariſh, for ſome yards, as till lately at Iſlington, is conveyed in a trough of wood lined with lead, called The Boarded River, over a brick arch fifteen feet high) was the firſt object of my attention.

I NEXT viſited the antient brick houſe called Enfield Palace, built by Sir Thomas Lovel, knight of the Garter, and privy counſellor to Henry VII; where he died in 1524 . It is conjectured that Henry VIII. bought it for a nurſery for his children . Here Edward VI. received the firſt news of his father's death, and his own acceſſion. On the chimney-piece of the great parlour are the arms of England in a Garter, ſupported by a Lion and a [Page 414] Griffin; on the ſides, the Roſe and Portcullis crowned; with E. R. beneath. Theſe initials are alſo on the ſtucco in front of the houſe.

QUEEN Elizabeth uſed ſometimes to make this place a viſit. Robert Cary earl of Monmouth informs us he once waited on her Highneſs at this place; where ſhe went to take a dinner, and had toiles ſet up in the park, to ſhoot at bucks, after ſhe had dined *.

IN the time of the great plague, in 1665, a very flouriſhing ſchool was kept here by Mr. Uvedale. That gentleman was very fond of gardening, and, among other trees, [Note: GREAT CEDAR.] planted here a cedar of Libanus; which is ſtill in being. The ſtorm of 1703 broke off eight feet of the top. The dimenſions of it at preſent are theſe:

  • Height 45 feet 9 inches.
  • Girth at top 3 7
  • Second girth 7 9
  • Third 10 0
  • Fourth 14 6

NOT far from hence, on the north ſide of Fourtree-hill, ſtood Worceſter Houſe, built by the accompliſhed John Tibetot, or Tiptoft, earl of Worceſter , who was beheaded in 1470. The manor, which ſtill retains his title, deſcended to him from his father, Sir John Tiptoft. The houſe was rebuilt on higher ground, [Page 415] by Sir Nicholas Raynton, knight, lord mayor of London in 1640 [...] who died in 1647, and has a ſplendid monument in Enfield church. The place is now owned by Eliab Breton, Eſquire, who married a co-heireſs of the Raynton and Wolſtenholme families.

UNDER the conduct of my friend before mentioned, I made a viſit to Waltham Abbey, ſeated in ESSEX, about three miles from Enfield, on the weſt ſide of the river Lea. I paſt by Waltham Croſs, [Note: WALTHAM CROSS.] one of the affectionate memorials of Edward I. towards his beloved queen Eleanor. The croſs is in excellent preſervation, and richly adorned with gothic ſculpture. This tract is a rich flat of verdant meadows, watered by the Lea, and bounded on each ſide by gentle riſings. The meads belonging to the abbey are diſtinguiſhed by the name of Halifield, or The holy field.

THE preſent church of Waltham is only the nave of the antient ſtructure, [Note: CHURCH.] which was in form of a croſs, with a central tower; which fell down after the diſſolution, and the new tower was built at one end, 1555. Within are ſix maſſy pillars; ſome carved with ſpiral, others with zigzag furrows, like thoſe of the nave of Durham cathedral. The arches are round; above them two rows of galleries, in what is called the Saxon ſtile. At the eaſt end remains one vaſt round arch of the tower.

THE only monuments of any note, are thoſe of the Dennies. That of Sir Edward Denny, and Joan his wife, has on it their figures, in a reclined poſture; he in armour: and in front are the figures of ſix of their ſons and four of their daughters kneeling. Sir Edward was of the privy chamber to queen Elizabeth; governor of Kerry and Deſmonde, and colonel of ſome Iriſh forces. He died in 1599, aged about fifty-two; and, I hope, merited this eulogy inſcribed on the tomb:

[Page 415]
Learn, carious reader, how you paſs;
Your once Sir Edward Denny was
A courtier of the chamber,
A ſoldier of the field;
Whoſe tongue could never flatter;
Whoſe heart could never yealde.

THE tombs of earl Harold, founder of the abbey; of the famous Hugo Nevill, who ſlew a lion in the Holy Land; and of ſeveral others, are now loſt; having periſhed with the fall of the tower on the eaſtern part of the church, in which they were placed *.

THE abbey ſtood near the church. Its only remains are a gate and poſtern, with the arms of England in the time of Henry III; part of a cloiſter; and an elliptic bridge over the moat. The edifice was pulled down after the diſſolution, and the materials applied to building a manſion by Sir Anthony Denny (father of Sir Edward) to whom the place had been granted by Edward VI. His lady afterwards purchaſed the reverſion in ſee of Waltham manor, from the ſame prince, for between three and four thouſand pounds, with ſeveral large privileges in the adjoining foreſt . This, and the great eſtate of the family, paſſed afterwards to the luxurious Hay earl of Carliſle, by his marriage with the heireſs of Edward Denny earl of Norwich, grandſon of Sir Anthony. The fortune was ſoon diſſipated; and the eſtate ſold by their heirs to Sir Samuel Jones of Northamptonſhire; who gave it to the Wakes: and it is at preſent owned by Sir William Wake, baronet.

THE abbey was founded in 1062, [Note: ABBEY.] by earl Harold, afterwards king [Page 417] of England. It might more properly be ſtiled a college, being ſupplied by a dean and eleven ſecular black canons, who were excellently provided for; the dean having ſix manors, and each canon one. A copy of the charter of confirmation by Edward the Confeſſor is preſerved by Sir William Dugdale *.

AFTER the battle of Haſtings, Githa, the mother of Harold, and Oſegod, and Ailric, by their prayers and tears moved the Conqueror to deliver to them the corpſe of the Saxon monarch, and of his brethren Girth and Leofwin, to be interred here. Harold's tomb was of rich grey marble, with a croſs fleury on it, and ſupported by four pedeſtals .

Henry II. in 1177, changed the foundation into an abbot and regulars, of the order of St. Auſtin . The firſt abbot was Walter de Gaunt; who obtained the privileges of the mitre, and of being exempt from epiſcopal juriſdiction .

Robert Fuller was the laſt abbot; who, with ſeventeen of his religious, reſigned the monaſtery to the king, March 23d, 1540. Their whole number was twenty-four. Their revenue, according to Dugdale, was £900. 4s. 3d. to Speed, £1079. 12s. 1d.

THE largeſt tulip-tree, I believe, in England, ſtands within the abbey precinct; being fourteen feet in circumference near the bottom.

FROM hence, at a diſtance, on a riſing ground, I ſaw Copthall, [Note: COPTHALL.] once a villa and park belonging to the abbots. Richard I. beſtowed the lands on Richard Fitz-Auchor, to hold them in ſee, and hereditarily of the abbey. He fixed himſelf at this ſeat. At [Page 418] length the abbot became poſſeſſed of it, and retained it till the diſſolution. Queen Elizabeth granted it to Sir Thomas Heneage. His daughter, afterwards counteſs of Winchelſea, ſold it to the earl of Middleſex, in the reign of James I. Charles earl of Dorſet ſold it, in 1700, to Thomas Webſter, Eſquire, created Baronet in 1703: and he ſold it to Edward Conyers, Eſquire, of Walthamſtow; whoſe grandſon, John, is the preſent poſſeſſor *.

RETURNING the ſame way over the Lea, I could not but reflect on the different appearance this tract made, to what it did in the days of king Alfred, when it was navigable for ſhips to the Thames, [Note: ALFRED'S EXPLOITS IN 896.] and by which the piratical Daniſh navy came up quite to Hertford. Our great monarch inſtantly ſet about frittering this vaſt water into various ſmall ſtreams; and, to the amazement of the free-booters, left their fleet on dry land . At preſent a uſeful canal paſſes along the country.

CLOSE to Cheſhunt ſtood the magnificent palace of Theobalds, [Note: THEOBALDS.] built by lord treaſurer Burleigh. When James I. came from Scotland to take poſſeſſion of the Engliſh throne, on May 3d, 1603, he was received here by the lords of the privy council, and was moſt ſumptuouſly entertained by the owner, Sir Robert Cecil, afterwards earl of Saliſbury. James fell in love with, the place; obtained it from Cecil in exchange for Hatfield; enlarged the park, and incloſed it with a brick wall ten miles in circuit. The place was reſigned to the king and queen, on the 22d of May [Page 419] 1607. A poetical entertainment was made on the occaſion, by Ben Jonſon, and ſuitable ſcenery invented, in all probability by Inigo Jones *. The Genius of the place is at firſt very anxious about her lot; at laſt is reconciled to it by Mercury and the Fates: and the piece concludes with a moſt flattering chorus . James was particularly fond of this palace, and finiſhed his days here in 1625. In 1651, the greateſt part of this magnificent place (ſo particularly deſcribed by Heutzner) was pulled down, and the plunder given to the ſoldiers. The ſmall remains (ſuch as the room in which the king died, and a portico with the painting of the genealogical tree of the houſe of Cecil) were demoliſhed in 1765, by the preſent owner, George Preſcot, Eſquire; who leaſed out the ſite to a builder, and built himſelf a handſome houſe a mile ſouth of it; ſo that the memory of it is only preſerved by the picture in poſſeſſion of earl Poulet, at Hinton St. George; and the deſcription, from lord Burleigh's own hand-writing, preſerved in Murden's State Papers .

I RETURNED by Enfield, purſued the direct road to London, paſſed by Tottenham High Croſs (ſo called from a wooden croſs formerly placed on a little moun