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No. 31.- Effigy of Margareta ap Rees, née Mercer, Tenby Church

The various persons represented on these tombs had scrolls issuing from their mouths which probably con

tained prayers.

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The various bosses round these monuments are beautifully worked, particularly the oak-leaves on the Thomas tomb and the stag's head on that of John.

The story of these combined tombs seems to be as follows : Joan Howell of Nevern, first wife of Thomas and mother of John, died Sept. 20, 1451. Thomas departed May 8°, 1482. Margareta Phelpe, John's first wife, Sept. 8°, 1482. Then, after a sufficient time had elapsed for John to marry Christina, the heiress of Henllan (Castlemartin), and have at least two children, he, John, ordered two tombs to be erected, one in honour of his father and mother, the other to commemorate his first wife ; also his stepmother Isabella Butler, his second wife Christina Eynon, and himself, though living. John White was alive in 1498, when he served as Mayor of Tenby.

No. 31. Effigy of Margareta ap Rees née Mercer, and Figure of her Husband, Thomas ap Rees of Scotsborough, 1610, in North-East Corner of St. Mary's Church, Tenby.? — The lady lies on her side, facing the spectator; her head rests on two plump and comfortable-looking cushions, finished with cords and tassels, her right hand is under her head, her left is pressed to her bosom. The head-dress is a close-fitting cap surmounting hair rolled back from the forehead. Over the falls a wide veil whose ends reach the sleeves ;


1 So far as the writers are aware no lay effigy was erected in Pembrokeshire during the sixteenth century. There is a fine tomb with effigy of Bishop John Morgan (1504) in St. David's Cathedral.

2 Previous mention: Fenton, p. 449; Arch. Camb., 1906, p. 81; Church Book of St. Mary's, Tenby, p. 77; Lord's Ichnography of Tenby Church in Browne Willis Papers, Bodleian Library, Oxford ; Norris Etchings of Tenby, p. 45; Barnwell's Perrot Notes, p. 74; Mason's Guide to Tenby, 1882, p. 27.

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on these it lies draped, while a portion of it is arranged on one of her cushions. A ruff is worn round the neck, and under it a tight-fitting bodice without a wrinkle covers the body. This is fastened by numerous small buttons, these latter are on the right side of the material, the button-holes on the left. At the waist


inches P-SCALE

No. 31.— Thomas ap Rees, from the Scotsborough Tomb, Tenby

is a narrow twisted girdle tied in a knot, the loose ends of which hang over a small stiflly-pleated basque. The arm-holes are surmounted by stiff épaulettes ; the sleeves are much rucked and evidently of a different material from the rest of the bodice. The turneddown cuffs are quite plain and rounded. The skirt is of the farthingale or hooped petticoat variety, and has an over-skirt reaching to below the hips ; an under petticoat is visible, and like the upper skirt falls in heavy rounded folds. A pair of stout shoes completes the costume.

A figure of the dead woman's husband, Thomas ap Rees, kneels on a platform above the effigy, before a font-shaped table on which is placed a book.

This figure is considerably less than life-size ; he is bare-headed, with thick black hair, beard and moustache, he kneels on a tasseled, corded cushion.

He wears only partial armour, but even that is more than was usual at this period; it is painted blue, and gilt, denoting probably steel and gilding, but as the colouring has been renewed from time to time it is not altogether reliable.

His plain ruff surmounts what is probably a leathern jerkin reaching to just below the waist ; over this is strapped a breastplate made all in one piece, and having its tapulor central ridge elongated and pointed. Epaulettes and brassarts cover arms and shoulders. These somewhat resemble those worn by Henry, Prince of Wales, in 1613; they have scalloped edgings, and at the elbows the brassarts are jointed to admit free movement of the arms.

The back is unprotected by armour. Above the thighs the upper stock is puffed out and bumbasted; this is visible at back and sides. The front is covered by a pair of tuilles dependant from the breastplate, and fitted with straps. They are edged with scalloping, and“ kept in place by a wide strap passing over the posteriors,” as are also the ridged cuisses which protect the front of the thighs. Jambs encase the legs, and sollerets the feet. Many rivets are visible all over the armour. The hands are evidently reconstructions, showing interlaced fingers badly executed. Helmet, spurs, and sword are absent.

As weepers we find the seven surviving children, four boys and three girls. The widower tells his story thus :

" Thomas ap Rees de Scotsborough armiger piæ memoriæ charissimæ conjugis | Margaretæ Mercer in puerperio defuncta hoc monumentum .

Quæ obiit primo die Maii anno D.M. 1610 postquam duodecim mecum marito | annos conjunctissime vixerit et decem peperisset liberos quorum septem superstites reliquit animam agens ætatis xxx.”

In English

"Thomas ap Rees of Scotsborough Esquire, raised this monument to the sacred memory of Margareta Mercer his dearest wife, who died in childbed on the first of May 1610, after she had lived twelve years in wedlock with me and borne ten children of whom seven survive. She resigned her life in the thirtieth year of her age.”

This inscription is above the male figure; the following legends are also on the tomb :

Ego sum abiturus ad eam, illa non reditura ad me.” Eamus et nos.” “ Et moriamur cum illa.”

This tomb is wonderfully rich in heraldry. The following coats will be found :-Ap Rees, Mercer, Martin of Cemmaes, Marles of Marloes, Batman of Honeyborough, Perrot of Scotsborough, Verney ?

? Levelance ? Roch.? Thomas ap Rees had probably met his wife in North Pembrokeshire, as the Oxford Mercers had intermarried with the Owens of Cemmaes; her nephew was husband to the Rector's daughter (see his tomb in Tenby Church).

The Scotsborough monument was moved to the eastward by Archdeacon Clark when he inserted his new windows in the north wall of the church.

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No. 32. Effigy of Sir John Carew (1637) in Carew Church.3—This effigy lies in company with that of his dame on a high tomb in the Carew chapel or north

1 Anno (?).—Editor.
2 See Book of St. Mary the Virgin, Tenby, p. 78.

p. 3 Previous mention : Fenton, p. 271, ill. ; Arch. Camb., 1893, p. 248; Old Pembroke Families, p. 17.

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