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The font must have been erected some time during the life of the fifth Lord, 1455–1475, probably not long after his father's death, and before the marriage of Thomas, the sixth Lord, and Elizabeth, daughter of John Neville, Marquess of Montagu. Unluckily, all that is known as to the date of this marriage is that it had taken place before 1475.
EXTRACTS FROM WILLS RELATING TO THE CHURCH. Sept. 2, 1472. Willelmus Stevyn, rector ecclesie parochialis de Kilvyngton. Sep. in cancella ecclesie predicte. Pro mortuario
secundum consuetudinem ecclesie. Johanni, servo meo, unum plaustrum et unum aratrum cum omnibus suis pert. cum quatuor bovibus [sic] cum una equa. Ecclesie predicte unam torch' precii iijs. iiijd. Executores meos, dominum Ricardum Smyth, et Johannem Wakefeld, Thomam Staynton armigerum. Testibus, domino Johanne Wynterton, capellano, Johanne Standwith, Simone Coke, cum aliis. (Proved by executors, Oct. 8, 1472.) (Reg. Test., iv, 179d.)
Sept. 14, 1480. Joh. Morland, nuper rector ecclesie parochialis de Kylvyngton. Sep. in choro S. Wilfridi de Kylvyngton. Nomine mortuarii mei meum optimum animal cum sella et freno ac
Res. Emmote Knyght, ut disponat et gubernet diversos pueros ad placitum dicte Emmote. She executor, and Mr. Wm. Poteman, LL.D., Archdeacon of Cleveland, supervisor. Witness, John Nesseham, of Thirsk, chaplain. (Proved July 14, 1481.) (Ibid., v, 109.)
April 10, Ric. Thwaytes. Sep. in ecclesia parochiali de Kylvyngton. Reparacioni ejusdem campanilis, xijd. (Proved May 4, 1516.) (Ibid., ix, 3od.)
July 4, 1521. Will. Cartar de Upsall. Sep. in cimiterio S. Wilfridi 'de South Kilvyngton. Capelle de Knaton unum arietem. Beate Marie de South Kilvyngton unam barbicam cum agno. (Ibid., ix, 212.)
Jan. 12, 1549-50. Richarde Metcalfe, of the parishe of Kiluyngton. Bur. in the churche yerde at my stall side, and for the same I giue to the churche iijs. iiijd. To John Lumbeley and Jennett, his wif, a flat of wheat in Mydle Bawes, vj landes of hauer in the Banks that spornesa of Litle Moore, and the hindermer flat of barlie of Litle More. To Thomas Lumbeley a blacke hawked stotte, my weddinge jakett, and best dublett. To my brother, William Metcalfe, a tagge3 1 A dagger.
3 More usually tagged, that is, having 2 This word, which has not been found the tail tipped with white or other diselsewhere, seems to mean ‘borders upon.'
stott, a paire of boittes, and a bukskinne dublett. To almosse chiste ijd. Witnesses, Sir Christofer Tipladie, prest. (Proved April 23, 1550.) (Ibid., xiii, 622.)
April 27, 1551. Wilyame Greyne, of Upsall, in the parishe of Kilvington. To be buried in the churche earthe their, as the body of my wif lies. Item I will that John Greyne, my sone, bringe me honestlie furthe and I giue to be distribute to the poore folkes of the saide parishe of Kilvington xs., and to be given to the prestes and clerkes at the discrecon of my sone, John Greyne. To almos boxe xijd. Mentions dau. Agnes, wife of Thomas Cooke, of Stillington, and Elsabeth, wife of Will. Hobson, of Worsall. (Proved June 16, 1551.) (Ibid., xiii,
The church consists of a chancel, clerestoried nave of three bays, north and south aisles continued westward to engage a western tower, and a south porch.
The quoins of the early nave remain in large part at the north-east, and can be traced at the south-east corner of the present nave. The western tower, which is the most substantial survival of the church before its enlargement, was probably built about 1100. It is a low tower of massive construction, consisting of three stages, divided from each other by plain off-sets. It had no buttresses at the angles, and in this respect and in the division by off-sets it bears some resemblance to the well-known type of Early Romanesque tower, of which there are several examples in Yorkshire. There is, however, no appreciable lessening of the area of the tower above each off-set. The belfry windows in each face consist of a double opening recessed within a semi-circular enclosing arch. Each opening has a rounded head, and the openings in each face are divided by a roughlydressed monolithic shaft with a scolloped capital, not unlike the “mid-wall” shaft usual in the earlier type of tower just mentioned. The middle stage of the tower is without window openings; a fine cross-head, apparently of pre-Conquest date, has been built into its western face. A three-light window was inserted in the west wall of the lowest stage during the fifteenth century. The western face of the tower is scored in places with diagonal lines, which, apparently, afforded keying for plaster.
1 Cf. Appleton-le-Street, Hovingham, Kirk Hammerton, Skipwith, etc., and the large number of such towers remaining in Lincolnshire.
? The “mid-wall" shafts at Hornby, with cushion capitals, belong to a rather
earlier date. Towers of a date contemporary with or not much later than this at Leake, are those of Brayton and Riccall, where the double openings are similarly enclosed within arched recesses.
The arch opening into the nave from the tower is wide, and has a semi-circular head without moulding. The jambs are ornamented with slender angle-shafts, which have scolloped capitals.
A north aisle was added to the nave about 1200. The arcade is of three bays; the arches are of two orders, and are roundheaded. On the side towards the nave the outer order has a slender edge-roll; the inner order is chamfered. The east respond is a corbelled shaft, with a plainly moulded capital ; the west respond is a shaft with similar plain treatment. Of the two cylindrical columns, that on the east side has its capital elaborately carved with a series of upright trefoils with stiff stalks ; the extremities of the lateral lobes of the trefoils touch each other. The capital of the other column is surrounded by a series of broad leaf-like fillets, which curve outwards with the capital, and probably were intended for further carving which was never executed.
The church was greatly enlarged about a hundred years later, when the chancel and north aisle were rebuilt and a south arcade and aisle made. The character of the mouldings of the capitals and respond-corbels of the south arcade indicates a date about 1300; the two-light side-windows of the chancel and another in the south aisle, however, suggest a somewhat earlier date. These windows, on the other hand, are of a rather clumsy and disproportionate shape, and their tracery seems to be comparatively modern ; it may be doubted whether they are not imitative openings altered from the original at some later date. The chancel received some alteration in the fifteenth century, as will be noted later. The chancel-arch, springing from corbels, appears to be of the date already mentioned, but has probably undergone a later restoration. The south arcade of the nave has pointed arches with two chamfered orders. The respondcorbels rest upon small carved heads, which seem to be of thirteenth-century date, and to have been removed from some other part of the building. The eastern column has a moulded capital, rather coarsely carved. The capital of the western column has a band of roughly sculptured oak leaves and acorns
in low relief, which resembles seventeenth-century work of this type rather than work of the date to which the rest of the column belongs. Both columns are octagonal.
Much old masonry was reused in the building of the south aisle, which, as noted above, was continued westward to a point slightly beyond the west face of the tower. At the east end of the south wall is a small piscina, with an ogee head and hood-moulding. In the outer wall, east of the porch, are two carved stones, one a portion of a large sun-dial, the other bearing, within a medallion, the figure of a beast devouring leaves and fruit. Both stones are probably of the twelfth century. The porch and south doorway are plain in detail, and are contemporary with the aisle. The walls of the aisle were probably heightened, and largely rebuilt in the fifteenth century, when the east, west, and one side-window were inserted.
The north aisle, as rebuilt, was extended westwards in a similar way, and the walls may have been heightened later. The east window and one of the side - windows are squareheaded, with two trefoiled lights. The head of each window is cut out of a single large stone.
The clerestory of the nave has square-headed windows of two lights, and belongs to the fourteenth century additions. The housing-slot of the old steep-pitched roof may be traced below the present roof in the east wall of the tower.
In the fifteenth century, the east wall of the chancel and its angle-buttresses were entirely rebuilt, and the three-light east window made. It is probable that the side walls underwent extensive repair at this date, as the buttresses appear to have been rebuilt about this time. The western buttress of the south wall was built with a very broad base, through which a doorway was made into the chancel. This doorway has a low droparch, and in the buttress above its eastern shoulder is a small sun-dial, which has evidently been recut. The masonry of the side walls shows work of some three periods, the fifteenthcentury stonework being of a dark bluish-gray colour and a harder texture than the rest.
In the south wall, nearly six feet west of the present eastern buttress, is the projecting foundation of an earlier buttress, which probably marks the south-east angle of the thirteenthcentury chancel. Inside there is a round-headed piscina of the
1A nearly similar stone occurs in the south wall of the twelfth-century
church of Hilton-in-Cleveland.
early thirteenth century in the south wall of the chancel; the head consists of a solid stone, with a moulding carved on the outer face ; in a stone below is a deep sloping drain. It would appear, therefore, that the first rebuilding of the chancel followed shortly upon the building of the north arcade of the nave. The disposition of the buttresses and windows indicates a complete rebuilding with a slight lengthening towards or about 1300, while a general repair took place in the later part of the fifteenth century.
On 22 January, 1330-1, Archbishop Melton issued a commission to inquire into a petition from Lewis Beaumont, Bishop of Durham, asking leave to appropriate Leake Church to the expenses of his table, which had been much impaired and wasted by the inroads of the Scots and other causes. The ordination of the vicarage was not decreed until 27 July, 1344, by Archbishop Zouche. The vicarage was endowed with the larger part of the rectory house, the whole altarage of the church, and the tithe of hay and the small tithes of Leake, Knayton, Landmoth, Brawith, Nether Silton, Kepwick, Crosby, and part of Northallerton, which appears to have lain within the parish, with the remainder of the rents and provents of the church with certain exceptions, and with two bovates of the demesne of Leake Church lying in Nether Silton. To the Bishop were reserved the rest of the rectory house, the tithe of corn from the whole parish, a yearly rent of two marks formerly payable to the rectors, the tithe of hay from the rector's demesne land under Cotcliffe, and from the meadows of Borrowby. The whole burden of meeting the various church expenses, with the upkeep of the fabric, books, and ornaments of the chancel were charged upon the vicars, one of whom may be credited, therefore, with the fifteenth-century repair of the chancel described above. 1
There is much interesting woodwork in the building. The seating of the nave is largely composed of seventeenth-century pews, and the font-cover is plain work of this date. The font itself is plain, with a large cylindrical bowl; there are no definite signs of date. The present low screen in front of the quire is made up in great part of fourteenth-century woodwork from some earlier screen. At the west end of each row of quireseats is a very fine stall-end, with poppy-head finial and a projecting ledge in front, supported by a carved octagonal up
1 Reg. Mellon, fo. 619d.