Imagens das páginas

plunder. The appointment of a governor, P or steward of the Castle, is also at present disconti. nued. Butler enjoyed the stewardship, which was a lucrative as well as an honourable. post, while the principality court existed. And, in an apartment over the gateway of the Castle, that inimi, tably facetious poet wrote the first part of Hudibras.9

In the account of Ludlow Castle, prefixed to Buck's Antiquities, published in 1774, which must have been written many years before, it is said, “ Many of the royal apartments are yet entire; " and the sword, with the velvet hangings, and “ some of the furniture, are still preserved.” And Grose in his Antiquities, published about the same time, extracting from the Tour through Great Britain what he pronounces a very just and accurate account of this Castle, represents the chapel hav, ing abundance of coats of arms upon the pannels,

p When Mr. Grose published his Antiquities, “ a sort of “ governor,” he says, “ was still appointed to the Castle.” But see Mr. Hodges's Account, p. 44.

9 Buck's Antiquities, vol. ii. p. 3. Mr. Hodges, in his Account of Ludlow Castle, observes more generally, that « it was in one of the outer towers of this Castle that Butler “ wrote his incomparable Hudibras,” p. 42,

and the hall decorated with the same ornaments, together with lances, spears, firelocks, and old ar2m22222–2ř\/22/2§Â2Òâti\/\§Â§Ò2Âtiti2–2–2–– deur of both, little perhaps is now known. Of the chapel, a circular building within the inner court is now all that remains. Over several of the stable doors, however, are still the arms of Queen Elizabeth, and the Earl of Pembroke. Over the inner gate of the Castle are also some remains of the arms of the Sidney family, with an inscription, denoting the date of the Queen's reign, and of Sir Henry Sidney's residence, in 1581, together with the following words :' “ Hominibus ingratis loquimini “ lapides.” No reason has been assigned for this remarkable address. Perhaps Sir Henry Sidney might intend it as an allusion to his predecessors, who had suffered the stately fabric to decay; as a 'memorial also, which no successor might behold without determining to avoid its application :“Nonne ipsam domum metuet, ne quam vocem “eliciat, nonne parietes conscios?”S

r See Mr. Hodges's Account of the Castle, page 29; The Ludlow Guide, p. 32; and Harl. MSS. 6121. fol. 40.

· Cicero pro Cælio, sect. 25.

A gentleman,' who visited the Castle in 1768, has acquainted me, that the floors of the great council chamber were then pretty entire, as was the stair-case. The covered steps leading to the chapel were remaining, but the covering of the chapel was fallen : yet the arms of some of the Lords, Presidents, painted on the walls, were visible. In the great council chamber was inscribed on the wall a sentence from 1 Sam. xii. 3, all of which are now wholly gone. The person who shewed this gentleman the Castle, informed him that, by tradition, the Mask of Comus was per

formed in the council chamber. . : From the valuable collections of the same gen

tleman I have been also favoured with several curious extracts, relating to the earliest history of the Castle, and to its connexion with the history of the Marches. The Welsh,x or Ancient Britons, were never wholly conquered, but were by degrees at length driven into the mountainous and inac-'

[ocr errors]

+ Mr. Dovaston, of the Nursery, near Oswestry.

u Mr. Warton says in the hall, or in one of the great chambers, 2d ed. p. 124.

* An Account of Ludlow Town and Castle, from the most early times to the first year of William and Mary, copied by Mr. Dovaston from a MS. of the Rev. Richard

cessible part of this island, whence, under their kings and princes, they made frequent incursions on the bordering inhabitants; which was the occasion of this and many other castles to be built for the defence of the country against the Welsh. Several towns and castles on the frontiers of Wales were built about the time of the Norman conquest; from which, it has been also said, that the possessors frequently sallied into the low or flat countries, and exceedingly molested the Welsh.

When 2 the title of Mercia was extinguished in the monarchy of the whole isle, the name, from the nature of the thing, was still retained in the counties bordering upon Wales and Scotland, from the known Saxon word Mearc, signifying a note, or mark, and by way of common speaking at last applied to boundaries of counties. Hence came the title of Lords Marchers, who procured their seigniories by right of conquest, having an authority from the king for that end: fora the kings

Podmore, A. B. rector of Coppenhall, in co. pal. of Chester, and curate of Cundover, Salop, collected with great care from ancient and authentic books.

y Owen's British Remains, 8vo. Lond. 1777, p. 10. 2 Mr. Dovaston's MS. a Owen's British Remains, p. 8.

of England, perceiving the difficulty of effecting the conquest of Wales by any great army, offered to several English nobility and gentry the grant of such countries as they could, win by their own force and expence, from their enemies the Welsh. They also permitted them and their heirs to hold the land conquered of the crown, freely, per baroniam, with the exercise of royal jurisdiction therein. They were therefore styled Lords, or Barons Marchers. But the foundation of their title was by assumption and permission, and not by grant: for no recordd of any grant having been given to a Lord of the Marches, to possess the authority annexed to that dignity, is to be found in the Tower, or in other parts of England. The tenure of these conquered lands, however, was precarious; as it frequently happened, that those

. The Lords of the Marches held under the kings of England, by the tenure of serving in wars with a certain number of their vassals, and of furnishing their castles with strong garrisons, and with all military implements. They possessed in all cases, except the power of granting pardons for treason, Jure regalia. See Warrington's Hist. of Wales, 3d ed. vol. i. p. 370, 380.

c Owen's Brit. Rem. p. 8.
d Ibid. p. 9.

« AnteriorContinuar »