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Dogmersfield Park, Hampshire ;
THE SEAT OF
LADY MILD M A Y.
The Archbishops of Canterbury had a palace near the site of this Mansion, which is two miles south-east of Odiam, as early as the twelfth century; and here Reginald Fitz-Jocelyne, who was translated from the See of Bath and Wells in 1191, died in the same year. Some extensive foundations have been discovered, which were supposed to belong to this ancient building. In the reign of King Charles II. we find Dogmersfield in the possession of Anthony Bathurst, Esq. a branch of that family having settled at Odiam, and it was afterwards the property of the Goodyers, but devolved nearly a century ago by marriage to the ancient family of St. John, whose ancestors, of the name of De Port, were settled in this county in the time of the Saxons, and were the ancient lords of Basing.
Oliver St. John, fifteenth in descent from William, the first who took the surname De St. John, left an only daughter named Frances, who married Ellis Mewe, Esq. her first-cousin, who assumed the name of St. John, by royal permission, in consequence of succeeding to that part of the family possessions that were situated at Farley St. John in this county. On the death of Frances, he married Martha, daughter and heiress of John Goodyer, Esq., in whose right he became possessed of the Estate and Mansion at Dogmersfield.
His great grandson, the late Sir Henry Paulet St. John, Bart. married in 1786, Jane, daughter and co-heiress of Carew Mildmay, Esq. of Shawford House, near Winchester, in this county, and obtained in 1790, His Majesty's permission to use the name and bear the arms of Mildmay only, in pursuance of the will of the late Carew Henry Mildmay, of Haselgrove in Somersetshire, whose estates devolved to him ; his widow is the present owner of this Seat.
The Mansion is very extensive, and has two fronts, commanding, on the south and east, distant views of the fine open country. In the Library is a very valuable collection of Books, amounting to upwards of 5000 volumes, chiefly composed of choice topographical works. The remaining apartments are spacious and elegant; they are decorated with some good Pictures of the Italian, Venetian, and Flemish schools, with some few by native artists. The following are selected as the most worthy the attention of the Connoisseur :
THE PRINCIPAL PICTURES AT DOGMERSFIELD.
A Portrait of Villiers, Duke of Buckingham, C. Jansen.
Bacchanalians, N. Poussin. A Head of Rubens, a copy, Vandyck,
A Landscape and figures, Poth. Rembrandt's Mistress, Rembrandt.
Belshazzar's Feast, Old Franks. An old Head, Ditto.
A light Landscape with figures, Berghem. A full-length Portrait of King James I., Rubens.
A Sea-piece, W. Van de Velde. Cattle and figures, Cuyp.
A Landscape, A. Van de Velde. Inside of a Church, P. Neefs.
Two Views on the Thames, Scott. A Landscape with figures, Pynaker.
A Portrait of Lady Mildmay and Child, Hoppner. A Portrait of David Teniers, Teniers.
Do. of Paulet St. John Mildmay, Esq. Ditto. The Park is extensive, and includes a great diversity of ground finely wooded. It was embellished by the late possessor with several beautiful plantations, in addition to its woods of ancient growth. The shrubbery and pleasure grounds were laid out by Emes, and near the house is a lake of about forty-four acres in extent.
Immediately adjoining the Park is a large common, covered with oak and holly trees, in many places bearing a striking resemblance to the New Forest. In the new plantations, very considerable attention has been paid to the cultivation of ash timber, and with such success, that the rapid growth of it in some places is scarcely credible. The Hundred, Lordship, and Manor of Odiam, with all their appurtenances, which had been granted by James I. to Edward Lord Zouche, were purchased, on the demise of the last representative of the Zouche family, by Sir Paulet St. John, grandfather of the late possessor of Dogmersfield Park.
Amport House, Hampshire ;
THE SEAT OF
CHARLES INGOLDS BY POW LETT,
MARQUESS OF WINCHESTER.
AmPort House derives its name from a village in the Hundred of Andover, and was formerly called Anneport; the beautiful situation of which excites the admiration of every visitor. It stands on a gently rising ground, and on the borders of a well-wooded and diversified park. The lawn and pleasure grounds are separated from the vale in front of the House by a ha !-ha! fence : a rise immediately opposite commands a view of the surrounding country to a considerable extent. The river Test, (here a small stream, but abounding with trout,) runs through the village; which, together with the ancient church, situated close to the mansion, give peculiar interest to this secluded spot. The projecting wings of the edifice are connected by a corridor of the Ionic order, which forms a conservatory for the choicest plants; the apartments are of fair proportions. The building, though possessing no grand architectural character, is commodious and handsome, and has long been the chosen residence of a branch of the ancient noble family of Powlett, who have at length inherited the honours of the Premier Marquess of England.
The Marquesate originally granted in 1551, was merged for about a century in the Dukedom of Bolton ; Charles, the sixth Marquess, had, to his second wife, Mary, natural daughter of Emanuel Scroope, Earl of Sunderland, by whom he obtained a considerable estate at Bolton, in Yorkshire, and being instrumental in settling the crown on the Prince and Princess of Orange, was advanced, in 1689, to the honour of Duke of Bolton : he died at Amport House in 1699. The present Marquess is descended from Lord Henry Powlett, next brother to John, the fifth and loyal Marquese of Winchester, who was created a Knight of the Bath, at the coronation of Charles I.; he had an only son, Charles Powlett of Anneport, Esq., from whom came Francis Powlett of Anneport, Esq., who married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Richard Norton, and heir to Sir John Norton, of Rotherfield Park, near Alresford, in this county, Bart., by whom he had issue Norton Powlett of Rotherfield, Esq., who represented Petersfield in Parliament, from 1707 to 1727; and by Jane, daughter of Sir Charles Morley of Droxford, had three daughters and eight sons, of whom George, the only survivor on the death of Harry, sixth Duke of Bolton, in 1794, became the twelfth Marquess of Winchester; as next heir male, he married Martha, daughter of Thomas Ingoldsby, Esq., and dying in 1800, was succeeded by his eldest son, Charles Ingoldsby, the thirteenth and present Marquess of Winchester, who married Anne, second daughter of the late John Andrews, Esq., of Shotney Hall, in Northumberland, by whom he has John, Earl of Wiltshire, and other children. The present nobleman, a little while before his father's death, was Lord Lieutenant of the County of Southampton.
Hursley Lodge, Hampshire ;
THE SEAT OF
SIR WILLIAM HEATHCOTE, BART.
This extensive Park is situated in the parish of Hursley, which is included in the manor of Merdon, distant about five miles south-west from Winchester; here was formerly a castle or palace belonging to the Bishops of that see, and a ruin still remains to mark the site of the Keep, standing in an area, which was surrounded by an immense double entrenchment of a circular form, parts of which have been levelled. This estate is particularly interesting, from its connexion in more modern times with the history of the Cromwells. It was purchased about 1639 of Sir Gerard Napier, by Richard Major, Esq., a gentleman of considerable fortune, who, having married Ann, daughter of John Kingswell, Esq., lord of the manor of Marvel, in the Isle of Wight, obtained some lands in that and other places. Dorothy, his eldest daughter and coheiress, was married, May 1, 1649, to Richard, eldest son of the Protector, who, after his marriage, resided much at Hursley Lodge, and indulged himself in the rural amusements of hunting, hawking, &c., for which this spot is well adapted. Ann, the youngest daughter of Mr. Major, was married to John Dunch, Esq. of Pusey, who became one of the county members for Berkshire from 1654 to 1659. His daughter's alliance with the Cromwells occasioned Mr. Major's acquiring great interest at court; and he was returned member for Southampton in that parliament which in 1653 gave Oliver the sceptre; after whose ascent to the protectoral throne, he was appointed one of his highness's privy council, but was kept from court by the gout : his absence was regretted by the Protector, who considered him a man of great capacity, and knowledge of the world. The misfortunes of his son-in-law, and the return of royalty, together with bodily infirmities, terminated his life in 1660-aged 56 : his wife, mother-in-law of Richard the Protector, died in 1662, and their remains are deposited within the rails of the altar of Hursley Church. This was the only estate belonging to the deposed Protector, which the government could not seize; it being settled in jointure to his wife and her issue, and hither he retired for a short period previous to the Restoration, and to his exile to the continent : his wife Dorothy dying in 1675-6, his eldest surviving son Oliver succeeded to the estate. Oliver died in 1705, aged 49, after which, Richard Cromwell, his father, became entitled to a life-interest in the estate, and sent his daughters down to take possession, which they did, and afterwards refused to give it up to him, pretending that he was superannuated, and proposed to allow him a small sum annually : this he refused to accept, and was obliged to have recourse to the law, to obtain possession ; on which occasion he was treated with much indulgence, and allowed to sit covered in court : Queen Anne is said to have expressed her approbation of the respect shewn to a man who had been a sovereign. He ended his days at Cheshunt, in 1712, at the great age of eighty-five, and his remains were conducted with funeral pomp to Hursley, and deposited near his lady in the chancel of the church. His daughters, after his death, sold the family estate to Sir William Heathcote, Bart., for £35,000. who caused the ancient manor house to be entirely taken down, when in one of the walls was found the die of a seal, considered to be the identical Seal of the Commonwealth, which Oliver Cromwell took from the Parliament. Sir William erected the present spacious edifice: the front of brick has rather a grand appearance, having lofty pilasters of stone, which rise from the basement story, surmounted by a pediment; the entrance is by a flight of steps on each side ; which, with the continued entablature, are also of stone; the lawn in front is of considerable extent, and is ornamented with many fine old trees, and beautiful shrubberies. The Park is well stocked with deer and all sorts of game.
Sir William Heathcote had the title of Baronet conferred upon him in 1733; he married Elizabeth, only daughter of Thomas, first Earl of Macclesfield; and on her issue male are entailed the honours of the Macclesfield titles. By this lady he had Sir Thomas Heathcote, the second Bart., who dying in 1787, was succeeded by the present possessor of Hursley Lodge, who married Frances, daughter and coheiress of John Thorpe, Esq., of Embley in this county, by whom he has six sons and two daughters. He has represented the county in two Parliaments, and his eldest son, Thomas Freeman Heathcote, Esq., was returned one of the members for Hampshire.