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recumbent figures of (as is believed) Sir Henry Halsall and his wife Margaret, a daughter of the house of Stanley. On the north side is a marble figure, full length, of a priest in vestments (much defaced), believed to represent Richard Halsall, who lived in the time of Elizabeth. In the south wall of the chancel are four arched niches, crowned by mouldings which terminate in heads, and in the first of these is a piscina. The font is modern upon an old base. In the churchyard is a sundial bearing the date 1725.
After the inspection of the church Canon Blundell led the party to some strange ruins brought to light on the recent pulling down of the old rectory, whose walls enclosed them. They consist of fragments of wall with Gothic doorways, but no one has yet been able to ascertain definitely the purpose for which they were erected. The suggestion, put forth hesitatingly by Canon Blundell, was that Edward Halsall, who in 1593 founded the school in the wing of the church, intended originally to erect a separate building on this site, but was for some reason prevented, and ultimately carried out only the smaller scheme. It is hoped that ere long further light will be thrown on this matter.
Friday, October 9th, 1896.
The opening meeting of the winter session was held in the Manchester City Art Gallery, Mosley Street, Mr. C. W. Sutton, one of the Vice-presidents, being in the chair. There was a large attendance.
Professor W. Boyd Dawkins, F.S.A., gave an address on Britain in the Prehistoric Iron Age, and his remarks were illustrated by a series of interesting pictures thrown on the screen by the oxy-hydrogen lantern.
The lecturer showed by the objects which had been found at Glastonbury (which Mr. Arthur Evans, F.S.A., describes as the Venice of the North), Aylesford, Mount Caburn, Lewes, and other places in this country, that the early inhabitants were a pastoral people, having dogs, cows, sheep, goats, horses, and pigs, and that they were acquainted with spinning, as remains of looms and shuttles have been found. They also had artificers in iron and bronze. From the former they made axes, hammers, spears, saws, and bill-hooks, and from the latter they made bowls, brooches and safety-pins, finger rings, and buckets. They were a small dark race, similar types being still found in Wiltshire, Cornwall, and Devonshire. The lecturer showed by the objects found, that the early inhabitants possessed a considerable amount of art culture, and that they had intercourse with the continent of Europe. The period defined would be about B.C. 335. Amongst the principal illustrations were a gold cap from Scandinavia and gold bowl, Ireland; a plan of Silchester showing the excavations up to a recent date, and coins and antiquities found therein. Professor Dawkins concluded by exhibiting an interesting series of British coins, pointing out that they were imitations, in most cases ludicrous imitations, of the gold stater of Philip of Macedon and other Greek and Roman coins.
The Chairman expressed the gratification felt by the Society at the admirable arrangements that had been made by the Corporation, by which this and kindred societies were allowed to hold conversazioni and other special gatherings at the gallery.
Friday, November 6th, 1896.
The monthly meeting was held in the reading-room of Chetham's Hospital, which, as well as the rest of the old College, is now illuminated by the electric light, an great and much appreciated improvement. Mr. Charles W. Sutton presided.
Mr. W. S. Churchill read the following communication on "The recent Find of Roman Coins at Birch, Rusholme": The find of coins brought to light about a month ago is interesting, but is not an important one. It is the hoard of a man in humble circumstances, the coins being all of bronze and of small size, measuring but half and three-quarters of an inch. They all relate to that unhappy time when the Emperor Gallienus had to meet the adverse fate of the total destruction of a Roman army, with his father Valerian at its head, in Persia. Usurpers sprang up in almost every part of the empire, and the largest proportion of this collection of coins were issued by such usurpers, having a brief authority over Gaul and Spain, and also Britain. As far as can be ascertained the series will be as follows:
Victorinus, usurper in Gaul
Coins injured by corrosion, not legible at all, but
all of the same period
The series is thus confined to a brief period of twenty
years, or even less, for so far as we know there are no coins of the Emperor Aurelian amongst them. The Roman coinage at the time of Gallienus, according to Madden, is "excessively confused, there being sets of coins of different weights without any connection with each other. The name 'Third Brass' must here be abandoned; the coinage seems to be of a mixed metal, mainly copper or tin, washed with silver. For these the term 'billon' must be employed, and as small coins of copper and base metal continued for several subsequent reigns, they can be described as billon and small copper." The billon coins are but few in the find, and are wretched in design and make, and not even regular in size, but the coins of the Gaulish emperors seem to have been in good condition when placed under ground, presenting scarcely any sign of wear. But the gradual corrosion has been severe, leaving only a comparatively few coins with good obverses and reverses. I am glad to say that the Owens College Museum has acquired a portion of this find, which will shortly be arranged for exhibition. I have seen no coin of Antoninus Pius in the collection, and if the coin described by a correspondent of the Manchester City News, signed “E. R.,” is a small one of three-quarter inch size, he may have read the R in Victorinus for N, and was thus led to his attribution.
Mr. William Harrison read a paper on "Ancient River Crossings in Cheshire." (See page 67.)
Mr. Harrison's paper was illustrated by original drawings and engravings, contributed by Messrs. Rowbotham, C. Sheil, and G. C. Yates.
Mr. George C. Yates read a short paper on “Hulme Hall," which he illustrated by original sketches by Dr. Greaves and Mr. F. Tavare, and a ground plan made by Mr. Isaac Taylor. He said from the four monochrome
drawings made by Dr. Greaves in 1843 it would appear that Hulme Hall was a house of considerable size and importance. The building was arranged around an internal courtyard. The detail of the timber work would seem to correspond with that of the earlier part of the seventeenth century, but since its erection the building must have been considerably altered, and added to, and partly rebuilt. In the North of England Magazine, published in 1842, it says "That old chateau, evidently in its last stage of decrepitude, is Hulme Hall, the scene of Harrison Ainsworth's first romance, Sir John Chiverton. Approaching it from the north and crossing the Medlock by an old dilapidated bridge, which here empties itself itself into the river Irwell, you passed through a fine meadow with a line of tall and noble-looking beech trees planted on its margin; then turning to the left, you came upon an ascending slope of rich green sward, on the extreme brow of which stood the old hall, with its white front and intersected black beams, its foundation a red sand rock over-hanging the river Irwell, with a narrow pathway only intervening between the latter and the mansion. Down to this part of the stream there was a steep winding path thickly covered with brushwood and a sloping ledge called the Fisherman's Rock." Hulme Hall is believed to have been occupied in the reign of Henry II. by John de Hulme. It appears from ancient deeds that Adam, the son of Adam de Rossendale, held the "Man're de Mamecestre," meaning the manor house, in 31 Edward I., 1302-3. In 12 Henry VI. (1433-4) Ralph de Prestwych granted this manor house to Henry de Byron, in whose possession it remained only five years, for in 1439 the same Henry re-conveyed it to Ralph de Prestwych. July, 1654, the manor of Hulme was mortgaged to Nicholas Mosley. In 1695 Sir Edward Mosley died,