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“Notes and Queries
RELATING TO BERKSHIRE.
NOTICE TO CORRESPONDENTS.
Communications are invited upon all subjects of Antiquarian or Architectural interest relating to the County. All Literary Communications should be sent ot the EDITOR, Barkham Rectory, near Wokingham, written on one side only of the Paper.
It is requested that all MSS intended for printing should be written on foolscap paper, in an orderly manner, with REPLIES, QUERIES, and NOTES on SEPARATE SHEETS, and the name or initials of the writer appended to each communicatian.
A HISTORY OF THE CHURCH OF S. MICHAEL AND ALL ANGELS, CHIPPING LAMBOURN, BY JOHN FOOTMAN, M.A., will shortly be published. The book has been compiled from the original sources, and the author has endeavoured to render it as complete as possible. It will contain many illustrations, and the value of the book will be materially increased by an appendix of original documents; including a hitherto unprinted charter of Canute, with a translation and notes by Mr. Walter de Gray Birch, F.S.A., of the British Museum, who writes that it is "one of the earliest documents relating to tithe in England," a charter of Henry VI. granting a market and two fairs at Lambourn to the Dean of S. Paul's, etc.
HURLEY PRIORY.-With reference to the date of foundation of Priory which Mr. Wethered has fixed by its omission from Domesday, may I be allowed to point out that, as the Athenæum in a recent issue very aptly put it, the Norman survey was not “a guide for mediæval tourists,” and the mention of many castles and religious houses which are known to have existed was unnecessary, as being in no way contributory to the revenues of the Crown.-NATHANIEL HONE.
HURLEY PRIORY.-May I be allowed to comment on two statements in Mr. Wethered's paper on Hurley in your last number (vol. ii., No. 5)
1. It is stated that the date 1040 was discovered on a wooden cross, and Mr. Wethered assumes that this is "very clear evidence indeed of the Saxon origin of Hurley church," since "Harold (Harefoot) and Hardecanu te, sons of Canute, were the reigning kings of England in 1040."
Unfortunately, it is a fact that Arabic numerals were not used at all in this country until, at the earliest, the thirteenth century, and did not begin to be common before the middle of the fourteenth. It is difficult, therefore, to see how
the date" 1040" can have been cut on the cross. "1640."
The date is in all probability
2. It is said to be "unusual for a Prior to carry a crosier." This is not quite accurate. When, as in the case of the Hurley Priory, the prior was head of the house, he always carried a crosier, and so did a prioress who ruled over a house of nuns. When a prior was only second in command, as at Reading, (or a prioress, as at Shaftesbury), he had no right, and did not use a staff, unless by special licence granted to him, as in the case of the prior of Worcester, who bore a staff with a head of a peculiar form, as may be seen in the "overthwart" effigy behind the high altar at Worcester.
26th April, 1892.
W. H. ST. JOHN Hope.
HURLEY.-Referring to Miss Thoyts' note concerning the first volume of our Hurley Registers, it is quite clear that the same handwriting prevails from 1560, the first year, to March, 1626. At the head of the first page of the volume is the following: "A Register of all that were Baptized, Maryed and Buryed within the parish of Hurley in the count of Berks sithence the ffirst (?) yeare of the raigne of Queene Elizabeth of ffamous memory accordinge to the ordinary (?) computance set doune in the ould Register." Parish Registers were established by Cromwell, Lord Essex, in 1536. With regard to Miss Thoyts' remarks about the Moores, there must be some mistake in referring to their pedigree in a note connected with Hurley.
F. T. WETHered.
MURAL PAINTINGS IN BERKS.-An article on this subject, giving a description of most of the wall paintings in the county, appears in the “ Reliquary” for this month. It is written by the Rev. P. H. Ditchfield, and contains some admirable illustrations by Miss Blanche C. Wroughton. Mr. Ditchfield has recently edited for Mr. Edward Stanford a second edition of his "Guide to Berkshire."
UFTON COURT.-The history of Ufton Court and Parish has been written by Miss A. M. Sharp, and is about to be published by Mr. Elliot Stock. The author has with much trouble and research brought together a large amount of interesting information concerning the past history of Ufton and its owners. The book is a handsome 4to. volume replete with illustrations, and will be a valuable addition to every library.
SILCHESTER.-The excavations at Silchester have yielded some important discoveries; the foundations of what is probably the earliest church in Britain have been unearthed. Mr. St. John Hope's letter to the "Times" and other newspapers contains a description of this important find, which will attract many visitors to the ancient Roman city.
On account of want of space we have been obliged to postpone until our next number the first part of a valuable paper on Berkshire Wills, by Mr. Tudor Sherwood, and the second part of Mr. De Vitré's Berkshire Crosses.
THE REGISTERS OF THE PARISH OF ST. MARY, READING, 1538-1812.
The registers of this important and historical church are being transcribed by the Rev. G. P. CRAWFURD, and Vol. I., containing the Baptisms, List of Vicars, and Collections on Briefs, has already been published. We desire to congratulate Mr. Crawfurd upon the conclusion of this portion of his arduous labours, and to express our hope that he will receive sufficient support and encouragement from those who are interested in genealogical investigations which will enable him to complete the remaining volumes. It is satisfactory to note that so many inhabitants of Reading and the neighbourhood have shown themselves public spirited enough to subscribe towards the publication of this work, and we hope that the example which the clergy and parishioners of St. Mary's have set will be speedily followed in the other ancient parishes of Reading and the neighbourhood. When transcribers, like Mr. Crawfurd, are willing to devote their time and energy in the production of works of this magnitude, it is not too much to hope that they may receive public support and sympathy in their labours.
The present volume opens with a List of Vicars which is remarkably complete, dating from 1173 A.D., when William de Lincoln held the benefice, to the present day. The churchwardens have wisely placed a permanent record of this list on a tablet over the south door of St. Mary's Church. It bears witness to the continuity of the Church of England, as the present Vicar has ably pointed out in two sermons recently preached in St. Mary's Church; inasmuch as one John Whetham held the benefice during the four reigns of Henry VIII., Edward VI., Mary and Elizabeth, when the Church was gradually purging herself from Roman errors and freeing herself from external control. It must not be supposed that this instance of John Whetham was an isolated one. We have abundant evidence to show that happily in this country the Reformation occasioned no violent disruption, but was a gradual movement which, without disturbing the foundations of the ancient Church, preserved for future generations all that was sound and good in pre-reformation practice, doctrine and worship, and restored the Church of England after the model of a primitive and purer age. We notice later the record of the troublous time of the Commonwealth when in 1641 Thomas Bunburie was ejected, and the vehement Covenanter, Christopher Fowler, sent to supply his place. At the Restoration the Puritan is displaced by Peter Mews, who afterwards became Bishop of Winchester. The List includes several noted names of illustrious men, amongst whom we may mention William Lloyd, afterwards Bishop of St. Asaph, one of the seven Bishops committed to the Tower by James II. for their defence of the liberties of Englishmen, Archdeacon Nares and Dean Milman.
The preface of Mr. Crawfurd's work is written by one of the most eminent historians of the day, the Lord Bishop of Oxford, and is a valuable contribution to the study of Genealogy and Parish Records, and ought to be carefully read by
When we turn to examine the Register itself we find the names of many distinguished families, e.g., Addington, the father of Lord Sidmouth, Speaker of the House of Commons; the Vatchells, of Coley Park (1480-1750) who have left their trace behind them in Vatchell street, Vatchell almshouses, the Vatchell aisle in St. Mary's; Hammond, who was Governor of Reading during the Civil War; Wingfield, from whom Lord Powerscourt is descended. The Aldworths, Kendricks, Blagraves and Blandys all frequently appear in the register, and it is interesting to notice that the Barnard Peerage case was established and decided in favour of Mr. Henry de Vere Vane by the references to the St. Mary's Registers. The events of history are duly reflected in these silent chronicles. On page 56 we see the effects and confusion caused by the Civil War. On page 71 we notice that the abjuration of the covenant was signed by Peter Mews when he was instituted. Want of space forbids us to call attention to very many other interesting matters in this valuable work, and we fear that we can only do scant justice to Mr. Crawfurd's book. The briefs are full of suggestive entries which invite attention especially the collection made on June Ist, 1670, " for the redeeming of poor Mary Mews from slavery," and the note on page 245 relating to the 230 French priests who driven from their own country by the Revolution "found in this kingdom a hospitable and charitable asylum." The index to the Register is a work of vast magnitude, containing thousands of names carefully arranged, and is a monument of industry and labour.
In conclusion, we would urge upon our readers the great advantage they would confer upon historians and the students of genealogy by subscribing to the publications of works of this nature. Mr. F. N. Garry has been engaged for some time upon the very interesting Churchwardens' Accounts of the same parish, which we hope will shortly be published. Mr. G. W. Palmer has set a noble example in defraying the cost of the publication of the Municipal Records of Reading, upon which Mr. Guilding is at present engaged. Mr. Crawfurd has nearly finished the transcription of the second volume of the St. Mary's Registers. When this programme of work is accomplished, the inhabitants of Reading will have a storehouse of information relating to their town accessible to all, which for interest and importance it will be difficult to surpass.
The Quarterly Journal
Berks Archæological and Architectural Society.
Early Berkshire Wills, ante 1558.
The following extracts are from Wills proved in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, and now preserved at Somerset House, London.
GEO. F. TUDOR SHERWOOD.
The Will of ALICE ADAMS, widow.-To be buried in the Grayfreres Church in London. To Joan Bulkeley mayde and my servant a brass pott, one of those at the Gray Freres in Reding. To the Gray Freres of Reading xld. Son William Ashpoole, executor. Witnesses, Joan Bulkeley, Roger Mese, frear, John Thernall. Prob. 21 Nov. 1537. (11, Dyngeley).
The Will of JOHN ADEN (ADEANE) of Walyngford.—20 Oct. 1503. To be buried in the church of our lady in Walyngford. To each of my sonnes and daughter children a silver spoone. Το Isabell Mores my servant. William Aden my sonne the yonger and my sonne Thomas Aden, executors. Maister John Thornton, priour of Walyngford, supervisor. Witnesses, Robert Marten, Richard Kelyng, John Towsey, Rauf Malthill.
Prob. 2 Jan. 1505. (1, Adeane).