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Notes and Queries
RELATING TO BERKS, BUCKS AND OXON.
Communications are invited upon all subjects of Antiquarian or Architectural interest relating to the three counties. Correspondents are requested to write as plainly as possible, on one side of the paper only, with REPLIES, QUERIES and NOTES on SEPARATE SHEETS, and the name of the writer appended to each
LONGCOTT CHURCH.-This Church is about to be restored. It is ancientthe timbers of the roof probably XIII. century-the architectural features are of good character. The Vicar would be glad to receive contributions for the work which will cost about £800.
DALZELL FAMILY.-The following scrap of newspaper supposed to be of the date 1746 has been found on the back of an oil painting of General the Hon. Robert Dalzell, and is forwarded to us by a descendant of that gentleman :"We hear from Reading in Berks that General the Hon. Robert Dalzell considering the present scarcity of corn, the hard weather and the distress of the Farmers, lately ordered a bull to be killed to entertain all the inhabitants of the parish of Tidmarsh in that neighbourhood with a good dinner and a loaf, a large piece of beef, &c., and one shilling to be given to every deserving necessitous person in the Parish. Blessed is he who considereth the poor."
SOCIETY OF ANTIQUARIES.-At the reception of the President of the Society, Sir A. Wollaston Franks, on June 8th, there was exhibited at Burlington House a splendid collection of English Mediæval Paintings and Illuminated Manuscripts. The Dean and Chapter of Westminster and of Norwich lent some of their treasures, amongst which may be mentioned the Portrait of Richard II. (1395), Reredos (1380), Mass Book (1362), and many others.
ALDERMASTON.-We are very glad to hear that some mural paintings have been discovered at the Church of Aldermaston which Mr. Keyser is restoring. They were found beneath several coats of whitewash. One painting is a large figure of S. Christopher. It seems singularly felicitous that Mr. Keyser, who has devoted so much time and energy to the study of mural paintings, and whose book is the standard work on the subject, should have the satisfaction of discovering some paintings in his own church.
THE CHILTERN HUNDREDS.-The Rev. A. J. Foster, Vicar of Wootton, Bedfordshire, the author of "the Ouse" (S.P.C.K. 1891) is about to publish a book relating to Bucks, entitled "The Chiltern Hundreds." The author illustrates his topographical works with his own drawings. Messrs. Virtue will publish the work, to which we shall look forward with interest.
BYGONE BERKSHIRE.-Another volume of Mr. Andrews' Bygone series will be issued shortly. It is edited by the Editor of this Journal who has been fortunate in securing the aid of many able coadjutors. The following works by the Editor will be published in the autumn season :-"Old English Customs," "The Story of our Towns," and an historical romance entitled "The Sorceress of Paris."
S. EDWARD'S, OXFORD.-On May 7th this year, a useful item was added to our knowledge of the lost parish of S. Edward in Oxford. In depositing some gas-piping, at a lower level than previously, along Blue-boar Lane, in that section of it which lies between the Wheatsheaf Inn passage and Alfred Street, nine skeletons, lying east and west, were disclosed and it has since been discovered that several more were disturbed at the time of the main drainage in Oxford under Mr. White. The range of burials began at two yards to the east of the passage and continued easterly about ten yards more but as the pipes were rising in level and the slope of the ground getting deeper below the road, traces of bodies gradually ceased. These burials seem to have been on the north or north-west side of the Church whose site must be on, or just at the west side of, the west range of Peckwater Quadrangle.-H. HURST.
FAIR ROSAMUND'S CROSS.-The position of the Cross called Fair Rosamund's, about which there has been some confusion, can be tolerably well ascertained from three facts. The Tudor Boundary of Portmeadow given in Ogle's Letters, p. 201, clearly commences the circuit from the Long Bridge, between Godstowe and Lower Wolvercote and goes eastward toward the railway, the wording is thus: "on the north side, from a certaine Mearstone pitched on the banck of the Thamise (and) on the south side of Toll Bridge, to another mearstone beside the Crosse in the said Portmeade, and thence to a mearstone at Sadler's close end," &c. The cottage garden at the angle of the road there, once the Split-crow Inn (local for Spread-eagle) the first in Wolvercote that touches the meadow, beside paying quit or other rent to the Earl of Abingdon, pays another to the city of Oxford for the Cross-pool, whence heavy foundations were dug out about 1820. Wood, in his MS. D. 11, places it at the same end of Toll Bridge, the longest of the three about there, and in "Lower Wolvercote." The incription on the cross is generally given incorrectly; a version, still liable to correction, is this
Qui meat hac oret: signumque salutis adoret
A. Wood's MS., D. 11, p. 40, reads thus :-"There was a fair cross set up by,
multitude of people resorted thereto." Leland's wording is: "There is a crosse hard by Godestowe," &c., which must now be considered to mean hard by the village, not by the Nunnery.-H.H.
BENSINGTON.-The Rev. M. T. Pearman it about to publish a History of the Manor of Bensington. The work is dedicated to the Bishop of Oxford, and published by Mr. Elliot Stock.
FAIRFAX FAMILY.-Any information relating to the Fairfax Family in Berks or Bucks during the last century would be welcome.-A. GIBBONS, Heworth Green, York.
GIFFORD FAMILY.-Leland states that in his day there were four great branches of the Gifford family extant (1) Devon, (2) Stafford (Chillington), (3) Bucks and (4) Hants. All these branches must descend from a common ancestor. In each case the pedigree is traceable to about 100 years after the Conquest, in one or two back to the Conquest. The origin and earliest history of the first stock is historical and well authenticated; but the connecting link between each of the four branches with the first stock and with each other has never been placed on historical footing. Any information that may tend to help in this direction will be most acceptable to me.-HARDING F. GIFFARD, 20, Holland Street, W.
BARTON HOUSE, OR COURT, NEAR ABINGDON.-(The building was the palace of the mitred Abbots of Abingdon and purchased by the Reade family circa 1530), Defended for the King by Compton Reade until burnt over his head. Wanted date of this? Mr. Reade has discovered the following facts that (1) in the last attempt of Rupert to recover Abingdon, troops were conveyed (about 1645) to Barton House surreptitiously, and then an attempt was made to surprise the garrison. If so the only solution can be that the House was taken by the Roundheads and on discovery of the stratagem they set fire to it. (2) The Civil War Tracts state the capture of old Sir Thomas Reade grandfather of Compton and then owner. Compton Reade was created a Bart. 1661, and Snr. Knt. of the Royal Oak for Berks. He was of Magd. Hall, Oxon, and commanded a troop of horse for the King. (3) John Edmuna Reade, the poet, states that Barton was burnt "after the Battle of Worcester-probably mistake for "after the siege" of Worcester. (4) Billing suggests it was burnt in 1643, but in 1645 it was standing (as above); ergo Billing is incorrect.-J. T. MAITLAND, Poplar Walk, Croydon.
LOCKINGE. Will any of your readers tell me whether the Church of Lockinge is mentioned in the Chronicon Monasterii de Abyndon? Lockinge is mentioned 17 times, but I cannot discover anything about the Church.-M. H. HALLAM, New Swindon.
CHANNER FAMILY.-A correspondent writes that the name of this family is common in Bucks. There was a Channer who lived at the beginning of the century who had property in Jamaica and a post in the Bank of England, whose son and grandson were officers in the army. Some additional information will probably appear in our next number.
600."-Your reviewer of Mr. Lyon's book makes a remark on page 29, line 7, which is, I think, open to misunderstanding. He writes of "the invidious custom " of appending to the register the condition of the person registered. In the case mentioned it may have been invidious. But the Act of William III, 6 and 7 cap. 6, 1694, is accountable for such entries. If a man died worth 600 he had to pay 20/-, and therefore to say he was not worth £600 only means that he had to pay less. There is a similar entry at Shottesbrooke in 1699, when the son of the Curate of the Parish was baptised "reputed not worth £600." Indeed I think you will find similar entries not a few. This Act was only for five years, money being wanted for the war with France.-E. SAVORY, Binfield Rectory.
To HATFIELD, 34 MILES.-The Rev. Canon Brown writes to me from Laggan House, Maidenhead, April 24th, 1896 :—I have been astonished by seeing in a cross-road from Reading to Marlow the mile stone marked To Hatfield 34 Miles, and I wondered why the distance should be marked from that place in Hertfordshire. The following extract which I cut out last week from the Maidenhead Advertiser explains the matter:-"It may be interesting to the members of the District Council to know that the Act originally authorizing the formation of the turnpike-road was passed in the year 1768. . . . . It was promoted by the Marquis of Salisbury, who lived at Hatfield, and his near neighbour, the Earl of Essex. Both these noblemen were victims to gout, and went every year to Bath to take the waters. 130 years ago cross-country roads were frequently impassable and Lord Salisbury had to travel by the great north road from Hatfield to London, and thence by the west road to Bath. By making a new road in almost a straight line from Hatfield to Chalk Pit arm, near Knowl Hill, on the Bath Road, Lords Salisbury and Essex were enabled to shorten their journey to Bath by 20 miles, a very important consideration to two old gentlemen who suffered severely from gout and used expressions which rivalled in emphasis those used a few years before by our soldiers in Flanders." I think the above note is worthy of preservation in the Archæological Journal.— C. W. PENNY, Wokingham.
HE history of parishes and localities in various parts of England, has of late years drawn much attention, not only among the residents in the locality referred to, but among those, who in these records, recognise material for the greater history of our country; and are glad to study them for details which would be out of place in more comprehensive works.
The county of Oxford is full of historical interest, and yields to the patient student much little-known and valuable information.
Bensington has an early record, and comes into general history in the 6th and again in the 8th century. It was a Crown Manor extending over a large acreage.
In the HISTORY OF BENSINGTON, the Rev. M. T. Pearman has brought together a quantity of valuable details concerning the Manor and its surroundings which will be gladly reviewed by residents and those who are interested in this part of Oxfordshire.
It has been compiled with great care from authentic documents in the Public Record Office and elsewhere, many of which have been hitherto unpublished.