Page images

the same certificate it is shown to be proportionally large in other towns in Wiltshire: thus there are Communicants at—

St. Edmund's, Sarum ... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1700
Mere . . . . . . . . e - e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e. e - e - e. e. e. e. . . 800
Chippenham . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 667
Calne . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 860
Malmesbury ... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 860
Devizes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 900
Bradford . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 576
Trowbridge. . . . . . . . . . . - * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 500
Aldbourne . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 400

These large numbers are accounted for by the fact that before the Protestant Reformation every one above the age of confirmation who did not make his or her confession and receive absolution in Passion Week, could not receive the Holy Sacrament on Easter Sunday, and every one who did not do so, dying within the year, would have been refused Christian burial, except for some very special cause; and the number of Communicants was so great, that in the year 1637 Bishop Davenant made an ordinance that at Aldbourne only two hundred persons at once should receive the Holy Communion, and that on each of four following Sundays.

This ordinance is entered in the Aldbourne Parish Register, and is printed in extenso by the Rev. J. Bliss, A.M., in his edition of Archbishop Laud's works, vol. 6., p. 60.

Bishop Davenant's order is as follows:—

“John by Divine providence Bishop of Sarum.

To the Curate and Churchwardens with the Parishioners of Awborne in the County of Wilts and our Dioces of Sarum, greeting—

Whereas his Mato. hath beene lately informed that some men factiously disposed have taken upon themselves to place and remoue the Comunion Table

* The fourth council of Lateran, Can. 21. ordains “That every one of the faithful of both sexes, after they come to the years of discretion, shall in private faithfully confess all their sins, at least once a year, to their own pastor: and take care to fulfil, to the best of their power, the penance enjoined them: receiving reverently, at least at Easter, the Sacrament of the Eucharist, unless perhaps by the counsel of their pastor, for some reasonable cause, they judge it proper to abstain from it for a time: otherwise let them be excluded out of the Church whilst living, and when they die be deprived of Christian burial.” This is given as a rubric by Bishop Challoner in his “Garden of the Soul; a manual of spiritual exercises and instructions. He died in 1781, and was Bishop of

Debra, and Vicar Apostolic of the London District.

in the Church at Awborne, and therevpon his highness hath required me to take p'sent order therein.-These are to let you know that both according to the Iniuncions giuen out in the Raigne of Queene Elizabeth for the placing of the Communion Tables in Churches, and by the 82 Canon agreed upon in the first yeare of the Raigne of King James of Blessed Memory, it was intimated that these Tables should ordinarily be sett and stand with the side to the East wall of the Chauncell. I therefore require you, the Churchwardens, and all other persons, not to meddle with the bringing downe or transposing of the Comunion Table as you will answere it at your owne perill.—And because some doe ignorantly suppose that the standing of the Comunion Table where Altars stood in time of Sup.stition has some relish of Popery, and some p.chance may as erroniously conceiue that the placing thereof otherwise when the Holy Comunion is administered savs" of Irreuerence: I would haue you take notice from the fore named Iniunction and Canon, from the Rubricke profixed before the administracon of the Lord's supper, and from the first Article not long since inquired of in the Visitacon of our most Reuerend Metropolitan, that the placing of it higher or lower in the Chauncell or in the Church, is by the iudgment of the Church of England a thing indifferent, and to be ordered and guided by the only Rule of Conuenientie. Now because in things of this nature, to iudge and determine what is most couenient, belongs not to priuate persons, but to those that have Ecclesiasticall authority; I inhibit yo" the Church Wardens, and all other persons wha’soeuer, to meddle with the bringing downe of the Comunion Table, or with altering the place thereof at such times as the holy supp. is to be administered, and I require you herein to yeeld obedience vnto what is already iudged most conuenient by my Chauncellor, whless vpon further consideration and viewe it shall be otherwise ordered. Now to the end that the Minister may neither be ouertoyled, nor the people indecently and inconueniently thronged together when they are to drawe neire and take the Holy Sacrament, and that the frequent celebratio. thereof may never the lesse be continued, I doe further appoint, that thrice in the yeare at the least, there be publique notice giuen in the Church, for fower Comunions, to be held upon fower Sundaies together, and that there come not to the Comunion in one day, above two hundred at the Most. For the better obseruation whereof, and that euery man may know his prop. time, the Curate shall diuide the Parishioners into fower parts, according to his discretio., and as shall most fittingly serue to this purpose. And if any turbulent spirits shall disobey this our Order, hee shall be proceeded against according to the quality. of his fault and Misdemeanor.—In witness whereof I have hereunto set my

hand and Seale Episcopall, this seventeenth day of May, 1637, and in the yeare of our consecration the sixteenth.”

ST. PETER’s CHURCH.-This is a Rectory, and had in it (2 Edw. 6, 1548) a Jesus service," of which John Burdsey was the Priest; a Chantry, founded in 1503, of which John Potter was the Stypendarye (that is, the heir of the founder got a priest for as little money as he could); and St. Catharine's Chantry, of which Thomas Russell was the priest, and of which a part of the foundation was a rent of twenty shillings “owte of a tenemente called the Angell of the possessions of Geffery Daniell.” In this church there were also Obits (anniversary masses) for John Bythewaye, John Awale, John Esten, James Loder, John Wynter, and Robert Nuttynge. This Rectory is not mentioned in the Taxation of Pope Nicholas (1288) nor is it to be found either in the Nona roll (1341), or in the Parliamentary Survey of Livings of 1650 which is in Lambeth Palace; but in the Valor Ecclesiasticus of King Henry 8, (1534), vol. 2, p. 150, the value is stated to be twelve pounds a year, and Thomas Blundell to be the Rector. ST. MARY's CHURCH.-This is said to be a Vicarage, but it is not known who was or is the Rector, but in the Sarum Institutions (edited by Sir Thomas Phillipps, Bart.), there is an entry under the date of 1316, that John Wetwang was instituted to the Vicarage of St. Mary, Marlborough, on the presentation of Raymond de Fargis, Dean of Salisbury, and in the Valor Ecclesiasticus of Henry 8 (vol. 2, p. 150), the Vicarage of St. Mary in Marlborough is valued at ten pounds thirteen shillings and fourpence, and Richard Bromflette is stated to be the Vicar.” This Living is not mentioned either in Pope Nicholas's taxation (1288), the Nonae Roll (1341), or in the Parliamentary survey of 1650. In this church there were a Chantry, a Jesus service, and another Chantry of the foundation of Foster and Pengryve; and Obits for Thomas Abothe, Richard Austen, John Goddard, William Seymer, Nicholas Ffryse, Thomas Seymer, and John Matthew. Attached to this Vicarage is a Library of valuable Ecclesiastical works given by the Will of the Rev. William White of Pusey, in the county of Berks, dated the twenty-fifth day of October, 1677, in which he desires that every succeeding Vicar of St. Mary's will add one good book to the Library. Two of the most curious are the “Manuale, or Book of Offices,” in use before the Reformation, (in which the word “Papa” is struck out with a pen, under an ordinance of King Henry 8th, in 1541); and the “Hours of the Blessed Virgin;” the latter was printed in 1535, and is interspersed with many curious woodcuts. St. MARTIN’s CHURCH, or CHAPEL.—This could not have been more than a Chapel, as it does not appear in any of the Ecclesiastical taxations. It is thus mentioned by Leland in his “Journey through Wiltshire, in 1540, (cited, Wilts Arch. Mag. Vol. 1, p. 178):—“There is a Chappel of St. Martyne at the Entre at the est ende of the Towne” Mr. Waylen states this to have been north of the road leading to Mildenhall, between Blowhorn Street and Cold Harbour." The Chantry Commissioners, 2 Edw. 6th, mention “the parisshe of Saynte Marten's in Marleborowe,” and state that Richard Croke founded an Obit within the same Church. The sums paid for these Obits varied from two shillings to six and eightpence. HERMITAGE.-Of this there is no trace but the name. A Hermit was a person not necessarily a priest, the Bishop issued a commission to two clergymen to examine as to his fitness. Two such were issued by Chandler, Bishop of Salisbury; and Sir Richard Colt Hoare” gives the profession of Richard Ludlow, one of the hermits, which is to hear Mass every day, and on Sundays and holydays twice, and say fifteen Paternoster and Aves. The hermit was “enclosed” in his Hermitage, as it was called, with a religious service; that “in Usum Sarum,” being contained in a MS. of the reign of Edw. 4th, now in the British Museum. (Harl. MS. No. 873, fol. 18 b). Simon de Gandavo Bishop of Salisbury, who died May 31st, 1315, made a code of regulations for Hermits and Anchoresses, which I went to the British Museum to consult. A beautifully written manuscript volume was brought to me, and I was told there were two other manuscripts of the same work, all three being in the Cotton Library. Had the good Bishop written in Latin I should have understood his ordinances; had he written in the Norman language I would have tried to have done so, but as he wrote in what I suppose he considered to be English, I could not read a sentence; indeed I at first supposed that the language was German but I have since ascertained that ladies well versed in German can read no more of it than I can. I was about to give up the Bishop's ordinances in despair, when I ascertained that the Camden Society had come to the rescue, by bringing out a beautiful edition of the work with the various readings, and an admirable translation by the Rev. Prebendary Morton, B.D."

* This injunction is referred to by Archbishop Laud in “Laud's speech at the censure of Basterwick”

in his works vol. 2. p. 80, and will be printed in the Oxford edition of Laud's works, edited by the Rev. J. Bliss, M.A., vol. 6, p. 60.

* The “Jesus Psalter,” as used at the present day in the Church of Rome will be found in Bishop Challoner's “Garden of the Soul” above referred to. This Psalter consists of fifteen petitions, and, the name of JESUS being repeated ten times before each of them, the repetition is made thrice fifty times.

* In the “Liber Evidentiarum” (a small folio volume of copies of Charters &c., from Henry II. to Queen Elizabeth) preserved in the Registry at Sarum, is the following entry relating to Marlborough “Carta de Ordinacone Vicar perpetuli et eccliè de Merlberg et de annû solut ecclié Sar. A. D. 1238, which shows that Marlborough was either a perpetual vicarage or curacy at that date. By this deed the Bishop [Robert Bingham] orders 20 shillings to be paid to the Dean and Chapter of Sarum towards the finding of a wax light by the hand of the Dean, which light shall burn in the Choir of [the Cathedral of] Sarum every day and night at matins and at vespers until the Mass.

* I was informed by the Rev. E. B. Warren, Vicar of St Mary's, that human bones have been dug up under a yew tree at this place, F.A.C.

* Sir Richard Colt Hoare in his history of Wilts (Hund: of Branch and Dole, p. 161.) gives a copy of a commission dated 1418 addressed to two Canons of Salisbury, to examine a person who was a candidate for the Hermitage of Fisherton Anger: this commission was granted by Bishop Chandler, who in 1423 granted a similar commission to examine Richard Ludlow, who was a candidate to become hermit at the foot of Maidenhead Bridge. Sir R. C. H. also gives a copy of the profession of Richard Ludlow as a hermit, which is in English, and also states that in 1352 Bishop Wyvil issued an Episcopal mandate against some lay person who had assumed a clerical dress not being in Orders,

and pretended to be a hermit at Fisherton, and that the Bishop in consequence of this laid the Chapel in which he officiated under an interdict; and he adds that in 1348 a dispensation was granted to the hermit at Fisherton, to celebrate Divine Worship in the Chapel there. Dr. Ingram in his “Memorials of Codford St. Mary,” (p. 48,) gives a copy of the profession of Richard Ludlow, and at (p. 47,) gives a translation of the license granted by King Edward 2nd. to Oliver De Ingham to endow a hermitage at East Codford, with two acres of land: this is dated June 6th, 1317, and is extracted from the Patent Rolls, 10 Edward 2d. p. 2. m. 8.

"The following is a specimen of the English of Simon de Gandavo:—Nu aski ze hwat rivle ze ancren schullen holden P Ye schullen alleis weis, mid alle mitite & mid alle strenche, wel witen be iure, & be uttre vor hire sale—be iure is enere ilube: pe uttre is misliebe.

Which is thus translated —“Do you now ask what rule you Anchoresses should observe? Ye should by all means, with all your might and with all your strength, keep well the inward rule and for its sake the outward. The inward rule is always alike.”

« PreviousContinue »