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which is engraved the following epitaph, intro. ducing a pun:
“ Here, friend, is little Daniel's tamb,
To Joseph's years he did arrive ;
While labour kept poor Dan alive.
About a mile distant, upon a rising and heathy ground, and near the road to Douglas, are several stones, probably of Druidical antiquity, placed in a form somewhat similar to those of Laxey, hereafter to be noticed.
Having retraced our steps and turned to the left, we cross a bridge called Mulen de Cunie; and soon arrive at Balasalla, perhaps the largest village of the country, situated in the parish of Malew, two miles from Castletown. Here are the old cotton works now devoted to some other purpose; and many other mills. In the vicinity are a lime quarry and a lime-kiln : and trees scattered here and there improve the scenery.
Contiguous to the village are the ruins of Ruthen Abbey. It was founded, according to Sachevereld by one Mac Marus, or Mac Manus, supposed to be elected to the government of the island on account of his many virtues. He laid the foundation of the abbey in the year 1098. The monks lived by their labour, with great mortification ; wore neither shoes, furs, nor liner; and eat no Alesh, except on journies. There were twelve of them, with an abbot. The Cistertian order had its begiaping the very year of the foundation of this abbey, and was probably planted here six and thirty years afterwards by Evan, abbot of Furness in Lancashire.
In 1134 Olave, King of Man, gave to Evan the monastery of Rushen with additional lands, and a third part of the tithes of his kingdom. He either enlarged or rebuilt the abbey, dedicated it to the blessed virgin, instituted the Cistertian discipline, and made it a cell of the abbey of Furness. In 1192 the monks removed to Douglas, but in four years afterwards returned.
The religious self-denial and austerity of the monks now gave way to indolence, and the refinements of luxury. Their temporal power was increased. The'abbot was made a baron of the land; held courts in his own name; could exempt any of his tenants from a trial at the
Lord's court, and have his guilt or innocence decided by a jury of his own vassals.
The abbey was plundered in the year 1316 by Richard le Mandeville, who, with his followers, having remained a month here, returned to Ireland.
In the reign of King James it belonged to the crown; but in 1611 it was granted to Lord Derby and his heirs, to hold for ever under the manor of East Greenwich, paying the accustomed rents to the King as Lord thereof. All the abbey lands were held under one grant, at the annual rent of 1011. 15s. 11d, and of 201. 178, in lieu of woods, mines, and quarries. These are the sums originally fixed by Henry the Eighth, when he took possession of this property and let it to the Earl of Derby.
The site of this abbey is now in the possession of Mr. Moore, whose father, chief deemster of the island, built upon it an elegant mansion, converting into out-houses many parts of the ancient monastery. The remaining ruins are not a very pleasing object. The walls, except just at bottom, are for the most part naked, notwithstanding the gardener's care to train the ivy, The tower is not at present so high as the
contiguous house. The best view of them is from a shrubbery behind.
At a short distance is the abbey bridge, formed of two arches, over the Castletown river. The inhabitants suppose it to be of great antiquity; but whether it belonged to the abbey or not seems uncertain. It is extremely narrow, the passage being only six feet eight inches in the clear, exclusive of the parapet-walls almost demolished. One of the arches is nearly semicircular, and the other somewhat pointed, but both are irregular. Grose's view of the scenery is very correct, even to the number of trees.
Two miles beyond Balasalla, and nine from Douglas, is Castletown, or Rushen, the metropolis. The houses are neat and their number is estimated at five hundred. The streets are more regular than those of Douglas. The town is divided by a river, over which, and opposite the castle, is a draw-bridge for foot-passengers ; and higher up, a larger one of stone for carriages... In the middle of the town is a parade, or market-place, terminating on one side with the castle' wall; on another with a chapel ; on a third with houses, and left open on the fourth, The market is little frequented, the women being
in the practice of going about to private houses to sell their provisions. Many people in the neighbourhood send the produce of their farms to Douglas. The rocky and dangerous bay affords no encouragement to commerce, and the town would quickly dwindle were it not the seat of government. Few strangers dwell here, and I am told that the natives do not associate with them upon easy terms. There is one very good inn, the George, kept by Downes, and, I believe, two others.
The parish church, dedicated to St. Malew, is a mile and a half distant; and a chapel was founded, or rebuilt, in the town by Bishop Wilson in 1698, the year of his enthronement and bis marriage. Lieutenant-governor Horg and the Bishop were equally ready to exercise or surpass their authority. The following cir. cumstances gave rise to the imprisonment of the latter by the former. Mrs. Horn, the governor's wife, had defamed Mrs. Puller and Sir James Pool with a false charge of criminal conversation ; and in consequence of her refusal to ask pardon of the parties was banished by the bishop from the holy communion. But Mr. Horrobin, his archdeacon, who officiated at