Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

gentleman, printed by Horace Walpole; an estimate of weapons at the Camp at West Tilbury in 1588; a letter, dated in 1630, showing how the Earl of Bridgewater nominated a Member of Parliament for the borough of Flint. On the 18th of February 1636, Sir Marmaduke Lloyd was made Chief Justice of the Counties of Glamorgan, Brecknock, and Radnor: in this collection is a letter, dated May 9, in the same year, in which he complains of his predecessor, Sir Walter Pye, keeping the judicial seal, thereby causing delay of justice. There is a long letter in 1659, by W. Holland to Mr. Broughton, in answer to questions on Ritualistic points. Mr. Dod has a grant,: dated in 1491, of confraternity to John Dod and Matilda his wife, by the minister of the Trinitarian Order of St. Robert, near Knaresborough. Mr. Horwood's Report is printed at p. 258 of the Appendix.

Mr. Orlebar's manuscripts show a Cartulary of the Monastery of Canons Ashby (described at p. 274 of the Appendix); and a letter, temp. Henry VIII., by a late Canon of the Monastery ; an account of all the offices in England in the Queen's (Elizabeth) gift, and their fees; a singular collection of supposititious Law Cases in French, curious charges in the Commissaries Court, temp. James I., by churchwardens against their parson, and counter charges by him; and a series of letters to the Constables of Harrold and other places to execute their authority in getting men to join the rebel troops. On March 1711 is a letter telling of the attempt on that night of Count Guiscard to assassinate Mr. Harley, also another in 1788, narrating of the Trial of Warren Hastings.

A manuscript account of the Parliament of 1625, in the possession of Sir Rainald Knightley, gives a considerable addition to our knowledge of that important Session from which the breach between Charles and his Parliament dates. Mr. S. Rawson Gardiner kindly brought this volume to the notice of the Commissioners, and he has furnished an account of it, which will be found in the Appendix, p. 254.

Among the documents in the possession of the Dean and Chapter of Wells (App., p. 351), which have now, for the second time, been subjected to Mr. H. T. Riley's inspection, the following may be mentioned as deserving more especial notice (the County Records of Somerset (App., p. 333), it must be premised, yield nothing worthy of remark) :--A number of deeds belonging to the reigns of the first three Edwards, in which numerous members of the now noble family of Welleslegh are named, either as parties thereto, or witnesses. One deed only will, however, be found indicating in any degree their early connexion with Ireland ; the use therein by Roesia, widow of John de Welleslegh, of the seal of the Archbishop of Dublin, 25 Edward III. Several other deeds also, in which various ancestors of the family of Rodney are named. A Latin charter, in Saxon characters, wherein Eadgar, as “ King of the Mercians, " Northumbrians, and Britons,” makes grant to Ealhstane. A deed, from which it appears that Hugh de Welles, Bishop of Lincoln, was the elder brother of Jocelyn, Bishop of Wells, and not the younger, as has hitherto been supposed. It discloses the fact also, hitherto unknown, that their father was Edward, in another deed mentioned as “ De “ Welles.”. A conveyance proving that Henry Beaufort, for a time, was Dean of Wells; a fact which by some authorities has been denied. The original copy of the sentence fulminated by the Bishops of England against those who should violate the liberties contained in the Charters of England, 37 Henry III., sent to be deposited in the Church of Wells; not improbably the only original copy that has survived. Exemplification of the Charter “ De Prisis bonorum,” 10 Edward I. Two letters, written by Edward II. and Thomas, Earl of Lancaster, shortly after the Battle of Bannockburn, requesting Bishop John de Drokenesford to forward certain moneys, with all speed. The families of Luttrell and Oldmixon are also frequently mentioned in these documents, and kinsmen of Bishops Buttone, Haselshaw, Drokenesford, and Ergom, incidentally come under notice.

In the description (App., p. 364) of the few remaining Rolls of Account, belonging to the Vicars Choral of Wells Cathedral, allusion is made to the “ Altar of John “ Welleslegh" in the Cathedral: and the cultivation of strawberries, at Compton; in Somerset, as early as the year 1438, is mentioned, The only ancient deed. now in the possession of the Vicars Choral, is one of a grant to William de Bracton, A.D. 1316.

The Report upon the Earlier Sessions' Books in the possession of the Corporation of Wells, calls for comparatively little notice. It will be found in the Appendix, p. 350.

From the Churchwardens' Accounts of the Parish of Chedder, in Somerset, during the 17th century, several particulars are to be gained in reference to the relief of thr, poor at that period, and the general distress entailed upon the community during the time of the Civil Wars (App., p. 329).

A second and closer inspection by Mr. Riley of the records in the possession of the Corporation of Bridgwater, has brought to light a considerable number of documents, the existence of which had been forgotten; and impressions of what was probably the earliest seal used by the Corporation have been recovered. Among the extracts made from these documents will be found a Welch-English religious poem of the 15th century, and a lease written in the Somersetshire English, of that date. Mention is made, in reference to several deeds still existing, of Robert Blake, the grandfather of the celebrated Adiviral, Humphrey, his father, and Benjamin, his brother, who was Mayor of Bridgwater in 1658. Two documents are also noticed, in which occurs mention of the property held in Bridgwater by Cecily, Duchess of York, mother of King Edward the Fourth. A communication made by the Mayor of Youghal to the Mayor and burgesses of Bridgwater, deserves notice as furnishing a specimen of Irish-English, in A.D. 1475. Here is also, a Letter of Protection, or safe-conduct, given by the Earls of March, Salisbury, and Warwick, in the time of the Wars of the Roses, to John Davy of Bridgwater. A notice of Bampfyld Moore Carew will be found alluded to among these extracts; and al Information against John Oldnixon (the well-known historian) for frequenting “ Presbyterian and Anabaptist Conventicles.” Among the documents at Bridgwater more than a hundred papers and parchments refer to the town and University of Oxford, mostly in the reigns of Edward the Fourth and Henry the Seventh. They are of considerable interest, and deserve a thorough examination. Of a much earlier date, is a Coroner's Roll for Oxford, 25-29 Edward I., and a Roll of the Mill-Court of the Castle of Oxford, 11th and 12th Edward III. Mr. Riley's Report of his operations at Bridgwater is printed in the Appendix, p. 310.

The numerous deeds and miscellaneous documents that are in the possession of the Corporation of Axbridge, in Somerset (App., p. 300), are chiefly valuable as preserving the memories of its localities and town worthies, especially in the 14th century. Among its records will be found a short Latin Chronicle, which there seems reason to believe was compiled by some one connected with the Cathedral Church of St. Paul's, London. There is a contemporary copy also of a grant by Edward I. to Anselm de Gournay and his tenants at Netherweare, and two deeds, of the 39th of Edward III., deserving remark as being written with a light blue ink. Tanning and weaving seem to have formed, in the Middle Ages, the staple trades of the town. From the Book of Ordinances, it appears that Axbridge supplied its quota of adherents to the Duke of Monmouth, on the occasion of his rebellion.

The leading feature that characterizes the more ancient records of the Corporation of Totnes ( App., p. 341 ) is the preservation of several Rolls of its Merchants' Guild, beginning at A.D. 1260, and coming down to the 17th year of Edward III. (A.D. 1343). From the entries in these Rolls, it would seem that great care was taken to award to each member of the Guild, male or female, a particular seat in the open market, and probably in the body of the Parish Church. The Rolls of the Mayor's Law Court, in the 15th century, disclose many particulars in reference to the building of the tower of the present Parish Church. Numerous extracts of letters, written to the authorities at . Totnes by the ministers of Elizabeth and James the First, are also preserved.

The oldest records now in the possession of the Corporation of Kingston-on-Thames (App., p. 331) are not of earlier date than the reign of Henry the Seventh. Among the hundreds of ancient deeds and conveyances still in their possession, and which have escaped decay, there are several that bear reference to the family of Pakington in the time of Henry the Eighth. The second Charter granted to the town by King John is still in existence, and is the most ancient document in the possession of the Corporation (for the first is lost). In the Churchwardens' Accounts of the time of Henry the Seventh, which are kept among the Corporation records, notices occur of the minstrels upon May Day, Morris dances, and the “ Robin Hood Games.” As at Cambridge, the town was burdened in the way of finding gifts, whether of “wyen and pypins ” for the Bishop, or gloves for the Queen; while, on her progress through the town, heavy fees were exacted by her “officers,” even down to the litter-bearers, or “ lyter men."

In his limited examination, for the present Report (App., p. 327), of records preserved in the University of Cambridge, the Admission Books of Sidney Sussex College, by the kind favour of Dr. Phelps, the Master, came under Mr. Riley's notice. Without entering into further details, it will suffice to say that the names of Lord Goring, Henry Napier, William Waller, Oliver Cromwell, Thomas Fuller, Theophilus Dillingham, and Nathaniel Hooke, occur among the extracts. Mention is also made of the families of Montagu, Lucy, Berty, Roper, Quarles, Pett, Calamy, Kettlewell, and Manley.

The chief feature in the Bowtell Collection, now in the Library at Downing College, Cambridge, is the series of Accounts of the Town of Cambridge, beginning in the year 1510, and coming down to 1787. The extracts from them will be found to contain much matter of interest. Mention is made in them of John Thirleby, Town Clerk of Cambridge,

- neinn with the then history of the univ.

and father of Thomas Thirleby, Bishop of Westminster, Norwich, and Ely, and ultimately deprived. Payments are entered as being made to the King's Minstrels, the Queen's Minstrels, various sets of Players, and to Brandon, the King's “ Gugeler.” The elaborate work, in the same collection, on the art of Bellringing and Changes, by Dr. Charles Mason, formerly Senior Fellow of Trinity, and Woodwardian Professor, deserves notice. The Common-place Book of J. Wickstede, formerly Mayor (A.D. 1613) of Cambridge, contains many items of interest, in the way of current gossip. The Diary of John Newton, burgess of Cambridge, in the latter part of the seventeenth, and beginning of the eighteenth, century, written somewhat in the Pepysian style, is replete with matters of interest, in connexion with the then history of the University and town. His accounts of the rejoicings in Cambridge on the proclamation of King Charles The Second, and of the funeral of Dr. Matthew Wren, Bishop of Ely, who was buried at Pembroke College, especially deserve notice. Mr. Riley's Report is printed in the Appendix, p. 320.

Of the MSS. preserved at East Hendred, near Wantage, the most important is a transcript of Archdeacon Harpsfield's work on the Divorce of Henry the Eighth. Another copy is in the Library of New College, Oxford, and a third in the British Museum. For topographical and genealogical purposes the early charters, rolls, and other documents belonging to C. J. Eyston, Esq., of East Hendred, are interesting and valuable. The Rev. J. Stevenson's Report on this collection is printed in the Appendix, p. 260.

The MSS. in the custody of the Bishop of Southwark, reported on by the Rev. J. Stevenson (App., p. 233), consist, for the most part, of the collections of the late Rev. M. A. Tierney, the historian of Arundel and editor of a new edition of Dodd's Church History of England. On his death his papers passed into the hands of the late Dr. Grant, and from him they have come into the custody of the present Bishop. The most important feature in this collection is undoubtedly the series of original letters and papers connected with the history of the English Catholics, from the reign of Elizabeth until a comparatively recent period.

As might have been expected, the collections deposited in the Library of Dr. Williams, in Queen Square, Bloomsbury, refer chiefly to the history of Protestant Nonconformity in England. (App., p. 365.) They have been catalogued with considerable minuteness by the late Mr. W. H. Black.

The charters and miscellaneous papers connected with the family of Throckmorton, and kept at Coughton Court, the residence of Sir N. W. Throckmorton, have been examined by the Rev. J. Stevenson, and from his Report (App., p. 256) it will be seen that they form a collection both extensive and interesting. . A more detailed catalogue of these documents is to be desired. Their chief value consists in the illustrations which they afford of the property held by the family from a very carly period. Interspersed with these is a large amount of material of a diversified character. As the correspondence reaches nearly to the present time, a considerable portion of it is not mentioned in the present Report.

The border town of Berwick-upon-Tweed has preserved among its papers a large proportion of its early documents. These go back to the reign of King Edward the Third, and from the accession of Elizabeth the series is tolerably complete. These papers are interesting as illustrating the administration of the affairs of the town. (App., p. 308.)

The Report upon the second and concluding portion of the papers and other documents at Stonyhurst College will be found at App., p. 334. A copy of the Gospel of S. John, said to have belonged to Saint Cuthbert, and to have been found in his coffin when his body was disentombed at Durham, is of the highest value. Of no less importance is the series of original Letters and Papers connected with the affairs of the Society of Jesus, from the reign of Queen Elizabeth to that of King Charles II. In addition to these there is a large mass of papers of a miscellaneous nature, more or less bearing upon the history of the Roman Catholics in England, or the English Colleges and Religious Houses upon the Continent.

A second Report has been made by Mr. Fraser on the Collections of his Grace the Duke of Montrose, at Buchanan. (Appendix, p. 368.) The first division of the Report contains a description of the official correspondence of the first Duke of Montrose, who held the office of Principal Secretary of State for Scotland. For many years his Grace took a prominent part in the management of the public affairs of that country. He was a very influential supporter of the union between England and Scotland, and for his services he received from Queen Aune a holograph letter of thanks, which is quoted in the Report. The Duke's correspondence with John, Earl of Mar, and many leading

[ocr errors]

vuc uate of the day and the month, which the

v

statesmen, is fully described, and several of the more important letters are quoted at length. His correspondence with Adam Cokburne, of Ormistoun, Lord Justice Clerk, who was prominently engaged in the affairs of Scotland, is largely quoted in the Report, which also includes letters written by persons who were present at the battle of Sheriffmuir, in the year 1715; and also notices of proceedings of Rob Roy, who was for many years a source of much annoyance to the Duke and his tenants in the Lennox and Menteith. A full account is afforded by the letters of the Duke of the conduct of Rob Roy in kidnapping the Duke's chamberlain, and robbing him of the rents which he had received from the tenants. The letters of General Carpenter, who was commander-in-chief in Scotland, show the great difficulty experienced in apprehending Macgregor. The second division of the Report on the Montrose Collections contains a description of the Charters and Correspondence of the Earls and Dukes of Lennox, from the year 1177 to the year 1603. The correspondence includes a letter from Queen Mary to her father-in-law, Matthew, Earl of Lennox, in reference to the conduct of his son King Henry (Darnley), who then threatened to go abroad and leave the Queen. This letter has never been published. There is also in the Lennox correspondence, a juvenile letter of King James VI., written in his ninth year. It is addressed to Captain Thomas Crawford, of Jordanhill, who performed the great service of capturing for the King, by an ingenious stratagem, the Castle of Dumbarton, which was believed to be impregnable, and which was the last castle in Scotland that was held for Queen Mary. The original is beautifully engrossed, and the date of the day and the month, which the King had omitted, is supplied, probably by his preceptor, George Buchanan, who gives in his History, a graphic account of the capture of the Castle. In the year 1584, when the King was 18, and again in 1591, when he was 25, or as it is stated in the original, when he was of “ parfyte yeiris,” he annexed ratifications of his original letter and promise of reward. This interesting document was unknown to exist in the archives of the Duke of Montrose until it was discovered some years ago by Mr. Fraser ensconced among useless papers. A letter of King James VI., also holograph, without date, and probably written about the year 1600, has reference to obtaining money to promote his succession to the throne of England. The money collected was to be placed in a « littil coffer," of which the Duke of Lennox was to keep the key. Another letter written by King James in March 1603, on the death of Elizabeth, asks the Duke of Lennox to accompany him on his journey to England in the Duke's “maist cumelie and decent maner." Of the Lennox Charters and Correspondence, amounting in all to about 200, a full and detailed abstract is given in the Report. The third division of tlie Montrose Report describes the Muniments of the Earls and Earldom of Menteith. These contain several ancient charters, including one from King William the Lion, and many unpublished letters from King Charles l. and King Charles II., to the Earl of Strathern and Menteith ; also a small but interesting collection of characteristic letters from John Graham of Claverhouse, afterwards Viscount Dundee, which have not been hitherto published. The Menteith Muniments, amounting to about 100 Charters and letters, are fully detailed in the Report.

In addition to his Report on the Montrose Collections, Mr. Fraser has made inspections of the Queensberry Papers at Drumlanrig belonging to his Grace the Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry ; also of those belonging to his Grace the Duke of Roxburghe at Floors; those of Lord Blantyre at Lennox Love, and those of Mr. Fletcher of Salton.

The papers of the Marquis of Bute at Mountstuart, reported on by Dr. Stuart (App., p. 402), consist principally of a series of family Charters of their Lands in Bute and Arran, beginning with those of King Robert III. Several documents illustrate rights belonging to the Coroners of Bute, and the keepers of the Castle of Rothesay. One of the miscellaneous papers shows the wish of James VI. for the restoration of Ecclesiastical Music; another illustrates the proceedings on a gift of marriage under the feudal system. Among the manuscripts is a Book of Offices of the 15th century, which from some of the entries seems to have belonged to a Scotch Cathedral body.

From Dr. Stuart's Report (App., p. 403) it appears that the ancestor of Lord Seafield, Sir Walter Ogilvy, acquired the baronies of Findlater and Deskford by marriage with the heiress of John de Sinclair in the early part of the 15th century, and that his Lordship is also the representative of the ancient family of Grant of Grant, of which clan he is the chief. The Report is confined to the papers at Cullen House, and does not refer to the Grant papers at Castle Grant, which at present are not available for the purposes of the Commission. In the former collection is a fine series of family Charters illustrating the succession to the lands, from 1437 downwards; several early

Robert II in

many in favour of the family of Roses the papers of Lord Glasgow

deeds relating to the office of Constabulary of Cullen and the lands annexed to it, and writs of foundation of the Collegiate Church of Cullen. One of the latter is a Charter under the Great Seal, conferring an endowment by King Robert Bruce for a chaplain to pray for the soul of Elizabeth, his Queen, who died in Cullen, and was buried in the Lady Kirk thereof. James, fourth Earl of Findlater, and first Earl of Seafield, was Lord Chancellor in the reign of Queen Anne, and a paper containing the Queen's “ Private instructions” to his Lordship, as Commissioner to the General Assembly in 1703, is preserved here. There is also a series of letters from Lord Hardwicke to the Earl of Findlater, from 1747 to 1764, bearing on the settlement of the country after the rebellion, and on the politics of the day.

Among Lord Glasgow's papers at Crawford Priory there is a series of Charters granted by various members of the family of Keith, the great Marischals of Scotland. One of them is a Charter by William of Keith and his wife at their Manor of Kyntor in 1380, which is remarkable for preserving in the list of witnesses a picture of the little Court assembled within the walls of this Great Baron. It numbered representatives of the baronage, of literature, and of trade. They were Robert, Earl of Menteith, James and Alexander of Lyndesay, Knights, John Barber, Archdeacon of Aberdeen, William of Fenton, Alexander of Stratoun, and John Crab, burgess of Aberdeen. Here we find the future Regent of Scotland, with the poet Barbour, and a wealthy burgess of Aberdeen, descended from Crab, the Fleming, who helped to defend Berwick in the time of Edward II. Many of the writs relate to the offices of Regality, Justiciary, Coronary, and Admiralty of St. Andrew's, beginning in 1363. Another series preserves the names of various provosts of Kirkheugh, a collegiate foundation at St. Andrew's, wbich came in room of an early Monastery there. Among the papers of Lord Glasgow, at Hawkhead, are many in favour of the family of Ross, beginning with one from King Robert III. in 1390. Several relate to the “ Kirklands of St. Catherine, called the “ Oylie Well," near Edinburgli. This well was a place of great resort in the middle ages, and a Chapel was erected beside it for the devotions of pilgrims. In 1504 we find it was visited by King James IV., who made an offering “in Sanct Katrines of the Oly “ Well.” Dr. Stuart's Report on this collection will be found in the Appendix, p. 405.

The lands of Dunning, which form part of the barony of Duncrub, appear in early records as a Thanedom belonging to the Earls of Stratherne, and these, with other adjoining lands, were conveyed in 1380 to John Rollo, under a reservation of the “ Cathedra Comitis," or Chair in which the Earl adıninistered justice to his vassals. It appears that Dunning was a place of early ecclesiastical settlement, and in the life of St. Serf it is stated that one of the Saint's retreats was in a glen on the lands, which is still known as the Dragon's Den, from an event in his history. Lord Rollo's papers (App., p. 406) are principally the Charters connected with the transmission of the different estates which now form his Lordship’s barony, and do not call for special remark. Among the letters is one from James, Marquis of Montrose, to Sir James Rollo, his brother-in-law, written in 1643, when the great Captain had broken with the Covenanters, and was preparing to throw himself into the opposite ranks.. Andrew, fifth Lord Rollo, was in the army, and having been present at the battle of Dettingen, afterwards saw much service in the West Indies, where he took the Island of Dominica from the French in 1761. In a series of letters to Lord Rollo from William Pitt, Lord Albemarle, General Gage, and other officials of the period, much information is preserved on the various enterprizes in which his Lordship was employed, and in which he gained great credit. • There is a collection of family records at Duntreath, the first of which is a charter by Isabella, Duchess of Albany, to William de Edmonston, of the lands of Duntreath in 1445. A series of royal and other Letters addressed to members of the family is arranged in a volume. Among these are several by King James IV. and King James V., one by Queen Mary to her mother, and others by King James VI., the Regent Morton, the Archbishop of St. Andrew's. There are also six letters froin the Viscount Claneboye, and four from the Earl of Antrim, 1627-1631. (App., p. 407.)

The papers at Abercairny (App., p. 416) are numerous and important. The founder of the family was a son of the great house of Bothwell, who, by marriage with a daughter of Malise, Earl of Stratherne, acquired the lands of Abercairny, with many others in Perthshire, in the beginning of the 14th century. The collection of Charters contains many granted by the Earls Palatine of Stratherne, by the Crown, and by neighbouring Barons, which are of great value for the history of land and families in the district. An Indenture was entered upon between the Queen of Scotland and Sir Alexander Moray

C 4

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »