(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "Sedbergh, Garsdale, and Dent: Peeps at the Past History and Present ..."

This is a digital copy of a book that was preserved for generations on library shelves before it was carefully scanned by Google as part of a project 
to make the world's books discoverable online. 

It has survived long enough for the copyright to expire and the book to enter the public domain. A public domain book is one that was never subject 
to copyright or whose legal copyright term has expired. Whether a book is in the public domain may vary country to country. Public domain books 
are our gateways to the past, representing a wealth of history, culture and knowledge that's often difficult to discover. 

Marks, notations and other marginalia present in the original volume will appear in this file - a reminder of this book's long journey from the 
publisher to a library and finally to you. 

Usage guidelines 

Google is proud to partner with libraries to digitize public domain materials and make them widely accessible. Public domain books belong to the 
public and we are merely their custodians. Nevertheless, this work is expensive, so in order to keep providing this resource, we have taken steps to 
prevent abuse by commercial parties, including placing technical restrictions on automated querying. 

We also ask that you: 

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Google Book Search for use by individuals, and we request that you use these files for 
personal, non-commercial purposes. 

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort to Google's system: If you are conducting research on machine 
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the 
use of public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help. 

+ Maintain attribution The Google "watermark" you see on each file is essential for informing people about this project and helping them find 
additional materials through Google Book Search. Please do not remove it. 

+ Keep it legal Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just 
because we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States, that the work is also in the public domain for users in other 
countries. Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of 
any specific book is allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Google Book Search means it can be used in any manner 
anywhere in the world. Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe. 

About Google Book Search 

Google's mission is to organize the world's information and to make it universally accessible and useful. Google Book Search helps readers 
discover the world's books while helping authors and publishers reach new audiences. You can search through the full text of this book on the web 



at |http : //books . google . com/ 





W.Thompson. M.A. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 



Se^ber0b, (BarsbalCt anb Dent. 



Of this Edition only One Hundred and Fifty copies have been 
printed^ of which this is No. w^ 



Digitized by 



Google 




I 89 2. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 




Digitized by 



Google 



SEDBERGH, 
GARSDALE, AND DENT 



PEEPS AT THE PAST HISTORY 

AND 

Present Condition of some Picturesque Yorkshire Dales. 

BY THE 

Rev. W. THOMPSON, M.A., 

Formerly Scholar of Queetis College^ Oxford, 
Illustrated with DRAWINGS made expressly for the Work by 

J. A. SYMINGTON. 




LEEDS: RICHARD JACKSON. 
1892. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 



TO 

Sebberfibiana, ©lb anb l^ouno, 

THIS ACCOUNT OF 

PLACES EARLY KNOWN AND LATE REMEMBERED 

WITH AFFECTION, 

30 3n0cribeb 

RESPECTFULLY AND FRATERNALLY 
BY 

AN OLD SEDBERGHIAN, 

The Author. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 



P RE FACE 



THE aim of the following pages is to indicate the leading 
features, and the leading features only, of an ancient 
and interesting parish — to concentrate in a single focus 
whatever is most noteworthy respecting its history, scenery, 
institutions, worthies, and present condition. So many things, 
which for generations have been associated with our parochial 
life, are changing, or have changed recently, that the time 
seems opportune for putting them on record, before the 
existence of the old is entirely merged and forgotten in 
the new. 

A limited space is an effectual bar to prolixity ; and 
though I have overstepped the bounds originally assigned, 
I have been ^obliged to exclude many details which seemed 
to possess a fair title for admission. This will explain why^ 
in the case of documents which are usually set forth in 
full, I have contented myself with a summary, an extract, or 
an allusion. I have, however, taken some account of all 
matters of primary and general interest which have come 
under my notice; and I trust that an intimate acquaintance 
with the locality has enabled me to select and combine 
judiciously, to correct occasionally, and to add something 
of my own invariably. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Dr. Whitaker'S " Richmondshire" is avowedly the basis 
of the early history of the Church, the School, and the Manor. 
In the case of the School, Miss Platt, while writing her 
'* History of the Parish and Grrammar School of Sedbergh," 
had unrestricted access to the Governors' papers, and it would 
have been superfluous for me to undertake afresh an exami- 
nation which she had already accomplished so carefully. I 
have, therefore, in my account of some of the Masters, been 
greatly indebted to her labours — a circumstance of which I 
desire to make the fullest acknowledgment. Over ground 
thus pre-occupied I have, however, stepped with a light foot, 
treating the subject from my own point of view, and in 
accordance with my own plan, and leaving behind me a 
multitude of documents and details undisturbed and intact. 

In respect of the Churches at Sedbergh and Dent, I 
have had the benefit of a perusal of the Reports of official 
members of the Society for the Protection of Ancient 
Buildings, and these have been valuable in a province with 
which I have no special acquaintance; but the restoration 
of both Churches since the Reports were written, has brought 
to light several additional features, which I have duly noticed. 

Many friends, by loan of books or by answers to inquiries, 
have lightened my task ; and I may, in this connection, thank 
Miss Sedgwick for the use of a copy of Whitaker's "Rich- 
mondshire ;" and Mr. W. P. BOUSTEAD — the enviable owner 
of "Sadda's bergh" — for the scarcely less indispensable 
"Memoriar* by Prof. Sedgwick. ITie Vicar of Sedbergh, 
the Rev. E. W. South, courteously granted me access to the 
registers at all times. Mr. T. Dover kindly furnished me 



Digitized by 



Google 



XI. 

with a notice of the origin of manufactures at Sedbergh; 
and Mr. J. Iveson had in his possession a sketch of the old 
Market Cross, which has been useful. The Rev. D. T. Allton 
and Mr. A. Inman obligingly communicated some information 
concerning Garsdale ; and Mr. W. NixSON did the same in 
respect of Dent-head. But it is to Mr. W. Robinson, of 
Sedbergh, that I am chiefly indebted, for the use of old docu- 
ments which have helped me to illustrate the social history 
of the parish ; and my old friend Mrs. Watson also contri- 
buted in the same direction. 

Other obligations, of various kinds, are acknowledged in 
the text as they occur. 

Slips and inaccuracies, which seem almost inseparable 
from works of this kind, I am not so sanguine as to suppose 
that I have entirely avoided ; but I have striven hard to do 
so, and I trust they will be found few and far between, and 
of no great importance. 

I have appended to the Index a Glossary of Dialect 
Words unexplained in the text, which, though familiar to 
natives, are elsewhere among the " things not generally 
known." 

The work has been to me, in a great measure, a labour 
of love ; and I shall be well satisfied if the united endeavours 
of pen and pencil should be deemed not altogether unworthy 
of the subject. 

W. THOMPSON. 

GuLDREY Lodge, Sedbergh, 

November ^ 1 89 1. 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONTENTS 



Chap. I.— Connection with General History. [Pages 17-76. 

(i.) To the Norman Conquest, 

The Area Defined. 

The Celts. — The Brigantes — A Demolished Barrow. 

The Romans.— Agricola in the North— The Tenth Iter— Over Burrow and 
Low Borrow Bridge Camps, and Traces of the Course between — Probable 
Cross-roads — A Supposed Camp : Recent Excavations. 

The Saxons.— Withdrawal of the Romans — ^The Saxons arrive — Strathclyde 
— Deira — Pope Gregory and the Mission of Augustine — Evangelisation 
of the North — Saxon Settlements Indicated by Existing Names — A 
Saxon *Burh* Exemplified in Castlehaw Tower — Etymology of Sedbergh. 

The Northmen.— Danes and Norwegians — "Wapentakes*' — Ewecross — 
The Danish and Norwegian Elements in Place-names — Finkle Street — 
The Saxon Earl, Tosti : his Deposition, Exile, and Death. 

(ii.) From the Conquest Onwards, 

The Normans. — The Devastation of Yorkshire — The Domesday Survey, and 
the Inclusion of Sedbergh — Earl Tosti's Possessions — " King's Land" — 
The De Mowbrays — ^The Descent of the Manor — Subinfeudation — 
Braithwaite Otway and the Enclosure of Bluecaster. 

The Church, — Its Probable Origin— Early Patrons: Andrew de Harcla, 
Geoffrey le Scrope, Coverham Abbey — The Pilgrimage of Grace — Adam 
Sedbar, Abbot — ^A Royal Rebuke — A Marian Mart)nr — ^James I. 

The Civil War, — Two Loyal Sedberghians : Sir John Otway and Dean 
Barwick — Glimpses of Garsdale and Dent: "Protestation" and 
Rejoicing. 

George /i?^.— His Tenets and Appearance — Fox's Pulpit and Firbank Old 
Chapel — Brigflatts Meeting-house — ^William Dewsbury and the Market 
Cross — Retreat of the Highlanders in 1745 — Traditions at Sedbergh. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Xlll. 

Chap. II.— The Church and the Grammar School. [77-162. 

(i.) The Church. 

Ecclesiastical Re-arrangements — ^The old Archdeaconry of Richmond — 
Vicars before and since the Reformation — Giles Wiginton, a Puritan 
Innovator — ^Jonathan Rose : his Memoranda — Architectural Features of 
the Church — A Peep at Ritual in the days of Queen Mary — Discoveries 
and Alterations during Restoration — Rood Screen — Rood Guild — Church 
Light — Reminiscences — Bells — Registers — Communion Plate — Monu- 
ments — ^The Blands — The Washingtons— Old Yew Trees. 

(ii.) The Grammar School, 

Its Connection with the Church — Roger Lupton*s Chantry School — Provided 
with Scholarships and Fellowships at St. John's College, Cambridge — 
The first ascertained Master, Henry Bloraeyr — His Will — Robert Hebble- 
thwaite*s Mastership — His Emoluments Threatened — Roger Ascham 
Appeals for Aid — ^The Chantry Dissolved— A Friend at Court — The 
School Refounded by Edward VI., and Robt. Hebblethwaite Reappointed 
— ^The Royal Charter — List of Masters — Good Gilbert Nelson — ^A Parlia- 
mentarian Contrast — Litigation, Delation, and Sequestration — Posthumus 
Wharton, by Appointment of the Governors — ^The School Rebuilt — 
W3mne Bateman, Vicar and Master — ^A Master's House Obtained — 
Distinguished Old Sedberghians— Recollections of the School under the 
Rev. J. H. Evans— The New Scheme— Progress and Present Condition — 
The "Hastings" and other Exhibitions. 

Chap. III.— Social and Domestic Life. [163-193. 

(i.) In the Fast 

Sanctuary-men — An Unrepaired Bridge — Remoteness of Sedbergh — Coaching 
Days — ^Tokens — Book Club — ^A Prosecution Association — The Ducking- 
stool — ^A Wapentake Court — The Custom of Tithing — Indenture of 
Apprenticeship — Farming the Poor — Doles and other Charities — ''Jack 
o* Dyers" and the Reading of the Riot Act — Government by Gun-Law — 
A Universal Genius — Recollections of some Obsolete Characters. 

(ii.) In the Present, 

Population — Manufactures — Agriculture — ^The Dalesmen : their Traits, Do- 
mestic Surroundings, Occupations, Funeral Customs, and Dialect. 



Digitized by 



Google 



XIV. 

Chap. IV.—The Scenery. [194-220. 

Room and to Spare — Wordsworth at Sedbergh — Mountain Heights and 
Views — Course of the Rawthey — Uldale — Cautley Spout —Hebblethwaite 
Hall— A Family of Artists— Douker Gill Cave— Thorns Hall— Hill 
Top — Sedbergh : its Old-fashioned Streets and Modem Institutions — 
The Old Vicarage — Down the River — Lord's Dub and its Victims — A 
Heronry — Ingmire Hall — Lincoln's Inn Bridge— Curious Field-names — 
Howgill Church and its Surroundings — Black Force— Geology and 
Botany. 

Chap. V.— Garsdale. [221-245. 

Situation and Name— The Clough— Grisedale — Rysell Tunnel. 

St Agatha's Abbey — The Church — Fitz-Alan's Chantry — The Priest-House : 
East Rackenthwaite and the School House— Paradise— Dissolution of 
the Monasteries — ^The Chapel Salary Lost and Regained — Dandra 
Garth — The Manor — The Tithe Commissioners and Abbey Land — 
*' Drunken Bamaby" and Garsdale '* Stingo "—A Recent Flood— 
Garsdale Worthies: Dr. Dawson, Dr. Haygarth, and Dr. Inman. 

Chap. VL— Dent. [246-274. 

Situation and Name — Manorial Vicissitudes — The Dee — Gate — Brackens 
Gill— Lea Yeat — A Famous '* Gill-brack" — Marble and Marble Works 
— Cowgill Church — George Whitefield— William and Mary Howitt— Gibs 
Hall and Hell Caldron— Dent-town in Olden Times— "Terrible Knitters" 
— ^James I. and the Grammar School — Remarkable Longevity — The 
Church — Recent Restoration — Charities — Old Parish Accounts — Adam 
Sedgwick : his Career — ^The Foundation of Cowgill Chapel — Difl&culties 
thereanent, and Royal Intervention — Memorial at Dent. 



Digitized by 



Google 



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS. 



1 . Frontispiece — Sedbergh . . 

2. Vignette — Disused Doorway, Old Grammar School 

3. Castlehaw Tower 

4. Ingmire Hall 

5. Fox's Pulpit, Firbank 

6. Old Friends' Meeting-house, Brigflatts 

7. Market-place, with Old Cross, Sedbergh 

8. Vignette— ^^s, G. Piatt 

9. The Parish Church, Sedbergh — Exterior 

10. ,, ,, Interior 

11. The Old Grammar School, Sedbergh .. 

12. The Old Master's Mouse 

13 . Salmon Leap, Howgill Bridge . . 

14. New Head Master's House 

15. New School . . 

16. Vignette — Rev. J. H. Evans 

17. Stone Hall: An old-fashioned Statesman's House 

18. Vignette — Rev. Isaac Green. . 

19. Lincoln's Inn Bridge {Text, p, 21}^) 

20. View up Cautley 

21. Cautley Spout 

22. Hebblethwaite Hall 

22^, Thorns Hall.. 

24. Hill Top, Sedbergh 

25. Weavers' Yard 

26. The Old Vicarage, Sedbergh 
2*]. Birks Mill 

28. Millthrop Bridge, and the Meeting of the Rawthey ) 

and the Dee . . . . . . ) 

29. Lord's Dub 

30. Howgill Church 

31. Vignette — Dr. Dawson's Monument {Text, p, 2^()) 
^2. A Peep into Grisedale 



17 

.. 31 

Opposite p. 61 

.. 69 

72 
. . 74 

n 
..91 

102 
..137 

140 

opposite p, 148 

159 

..161 

-. .. 163 

.. .. 185 

194 

Opposite p. 195 

197 

Opposite p. 199 

201 

..203 

205 

.. 207 

208 

. . 20^ 

Opposite p, 210 

211 

.215 

221 

..22^ 



Digitized by 



Google 



XVI. 



33' 


PAGE 

Old Priest-House, Garsdale 224 


34- 


Paradise 227 


35- 


RaygiU 23s 


36. 


Portrait of Dr. Dawson 239 


37- 


„ Dr. Inman 242 


3^' 


Vignette^Vxoiessox Sedgwick 246 


39- 


Gate, Dent . . . . 249 


40. 


Gibs Hall 254 


41. 


Hell Caldron Opposite p. 255 


42. 


Dent-town . . . . 256 


43- 


The Vicarage, Dent 260 


44. 


Dent Church— Interior .263 


45. 


Adam Sedgwick 267 


46. 


Memorial of Adam Sedgwick, at Dent 2^2 


47. 


Monument to Braithwaite Otway, at Sedbergh {Text, p, ^j) .. 274 



/^ 



Digitized by 



Google 



Sebberobt ^arsbalCt anb Bent 



CHAPTER I. 

CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 



Part I. — To the Norvtan ConquesL 

> LOCAL tradition relates that two 
men were once endeavouring to 
astonish an audience of rustics 
by the magnitude of their travels. 
"I've been to Middlesex, 
Surrey, and Kent,'* said one; and 
" I've been to Sedbergh, 
Garsdale, and Dent," promptly 
rejoined the other. The yokels 
were fairly aghast at the extent 
of these peregrinations, and were 
quite unable to decide whether 
of the two great explorers had surpassed the other. 

We are about, dear reader, to perambulate together the 
tract of country traversed by the latter of these mythical 
wanderers — the ancient ecclesiastical parish of Sedbergh, as 
it existed before it had parted with portions of its original 
contents. 

B 







Digitized by 



Google 



f 8 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Our attention will, therefore, be confined to the cluster of 
valleys which converge at the small market-town of Sedbergh 
— the said Sedbergh and its appurtenant dales being situated 
in the north-west angle of the West Riding of Yorkshire, 
among the outposts of the great Pennine Chain, and separated 
from the county of Westmorland by the thin partition of 
the upper reaches of the Lune. The central basin in which 
Sedbergh reposes lies partly on the western bank of the 
stream, and if we venture across, as we may occasionally feel 
called upon to do, it will be only as a tribute to the contin- 
uity of our horizon and the unity of the incidents in which 
the dwellers on both sides have shared. 

As "order is Heaven's first law," I propose to glance at 
our past history in chronological sequence. This method 
will give us a clearer view of the transactions in which the 
people of this district have borne a part, and will enable 
us to examine in their appropriate setting such matters of 
history, tradition, or speculation, as, without affecting a too 
dry-as-dust mode of treatment, it may seem expedient to 
notice in a somewhat cursory but continuous narrative. 

So various in the course of history have been the desig- 
nations of the district in which we are included, that we 
might almost seem to have belonged to different regions at 
different periods. 

When, half-a-century before the Christian era, " imperious 
Caesar," sighting the shores of Britain from conquered Gaul, 
was fired with the desire of adding our island to the Roman 
empire, he crossed the Straits, but did not penetrate far in- 
land from the southern coast, and retired, both on this and 
on a succeeding visit, without effecting any permanent lodg- 
ment in the country. But at a later stage of the Roman 
conquest, we find that the North of England was occupied by 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 1 9 

a powerful and warlike tribe of Celts, known by the general 
name of Brigantes. Of remains of this period, however, we 
have little in our immediate neighbourhood beyond a sprink- 
ling of names on moor and stream. We should have been 
better off in this respect if the road-makers in the coaching- 
days had not thought proper to rebuild the rickety bridges, and 
to macadamize the ruts, which contented our much-enduring 
forefathers. In 1777, as we learn from Nicolson and Bum's 
History of Westmorland, there was near Rawthey Bridge, 
where the road from Sedbergh leaves Cautley and enters 
Ravenstonedale, " a circle of large stones, supposed to be a 
monument of Druid worship." The * Druid worship' theory 
of these ancient circles has now been supplanted by another 
and more probable explanation of their use as enclosures 
of barrows, or grave-mounds, which once served as the con- 
spicuous resting-places of British chieftains. Recent researches 
have established this explanation as no doubt the true one ; 
and if the unoffending megaliths of which I speak had been 
suflFered to remain, we should have been able at this day to 
point to a most interesting link of connection with the race 
which peopled our island at the dawn of history. We might 
not have had such a circumstantial view of the habits of the 
primitive occupants of the North, as may be obtained from 
the successive layers of remains in the Victoria Cave, near 
Settle, but we should have felt ourselves not wholly dis- 
connected from the dim and distant fortunes of the men who 
once roamed and hunted over our hills, and then left their 
bones to be entombed in the same wild solitudes. What manner 
of people they were, we may partly guess from Canon 
Greenwell's explorations in the adjoining parish of Raven- 
stonedale, where he opened several barrows, and found that 
they had been raised over men of the round-headed type. 



Digitized by 



Google 



20 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

who were accustomed to the use of bronze, and affected 

interment under circixlar mounds. The stone-circle alluded 

to disappeared in 1822, a more trustworthy bridge across the 

Rawthey being required for the coaches, which, about that 

time, began to ply regularly between Lancaster and Newcastle. 

Sympathetic archaeologists were then too scarce in this part of 

the country to stay the hand of the despoiler, and as 

** Oft the sight of means to do ill deeds 
Makes ill deeds done/* 

the venerable survivors of ages were dragged from their 
resting-places, and broken or hewn into building-blocks. It 
is sometimes averred that the holes from which they were 
drawn may still be discerned, but these are wounds which no 
intelligent spectator can behold with pleasure. 

The Brigantes, we may be sure, did not yield to the 
Romans without a struggle to retain their independence. The 
brushwood and morasses which, in the then uncultivated state 
of the country abounded on every hand, served at once as a 
shelter for themselves, and as a vantage-ground from which 
to pounce upon their enemies. When, however, the skilful 
Roman general Agricola was appointed governor of Britain 
in A.D. 78, the subjugation of the Brigantes had made some 
progress; but there was still much to be done in completing 
and consolidating the conquest. He soon perceived that the 
only way to cope successfully with guerilla warfare in im- 
penetrable jungles and trackless wilds, was to safeguard the 
ground already won ; and this he did by establishing a 
system of permanent roads, protected at intervals by stations 
in the occupation of detachments of his troops. It is to this 
policy of securing the country through which it was neces- 
sary for him to pass and repass, by providing a means of 
rapid communication between all parts of it, that we owe the 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 21 

commencement of that network of roads and cross-roads, 
which conducted eventually to the walls and outposts which 
barred the advance of the unconquered Caledonian tribes. 

The necessity of restraining the predatory incursions of 
the Picts and Scots from beyond the frontier, as well as of 
holding in subjection the turbulent tribes on this side of it, 
led to such a concentration of the Roman forces in the 
northern counties as has rendered them a perfect mine of 
mementos of those far-off days. What time has buried in 
slow but sure oblivion, the spade of modern research restores 
to light ; and altars, statues, and inscribed stones, disinterred 
from their long repose, set before us in vivid reality the 
actual surroundings of the former masters of the world. 

Our own connection with this extinct civilisation lies 
chiefly in respect of roads and camps, and must at one time 
have been very considerable. An important military way — 
the Tenth Iter in the Roman road-book of Antoninus — ran 
from Chester to Manchester northwards to the Roman wall, 
which first between the Clyde and the Firth of Forth, and 
afterwards between the mouths of the Eden and the Tyne, 
checked the irruptions of the northern hordes. On this road 
— ^now popularly known by the name of the "Maiden Way" 
[mai dufiy Celtic y the great ridge), from its elevation above the 
surrounding country — was situated an important station at 
Over Burrow (or Overborough), near Kirkby Lonsdale. Here 
numerous relics of Roman occupation were unearthed during 
the excavation for the site of Burrow Hall in the earlier half 
of last century, and were duly recorded by the Rev. Richard 
Rauthmel, in his Antiquitates Bremetoitacenses (1746), Bremet- 
onac<B being, in his opinion, and indeed in that of most 
antiquaries after him, the Roman name of the station located 
at Over Burrow. The existence of such remains at this 



Digitized by 



Google 



22 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

place had been noted as well-known in the locality long 
anterior to Rauthmel. The old topographer, Leland, writing 
in the time of Henry VIII., says : — 

** Borow, now a vyllage, set in Lunesdale a vi. myles beneth the foote 
**of Dent-dale, hath beene by likelyhod sum notable town. The plough- 
•'menne find there yn ering [ploughing] la^ides quadratos [square blocks 
** of hewn stone] and many other straung thinges ; and this place is much 
" spoken of the inhabitants there.*' 

Of this station, once so important and famous, nothing is 
now to be seen, and a stranger would be quite unconscious 
that he was treading on classical ground. 

From this point, the road seems to have run straight on 
to Low Borrow Bridge, near Tebay, where the conspicuous 
remains of a camp may be observed by the passengers, as 
the trains on the London and North-Western Railway skirt 
it in close proximity. The distance between Over Burrow 
and Low Borrow Bridge is about seventeen miles, and though 
the ancient track between them is now obscured by new roads 
and ploughed fields, which have revolutionised the aspect of 
the country, we find indications of its course at several 
points. That it came by Casterton [castray a camp) goes with- 
out saying. Another trace is Borwens, near Barbon, BorwenSy 
or Borrensy generally indicating a Roman site of some kind, 
from which the stones have been cleared in the course of 
agricultural improvement. There is also in Middleton, not 
far from a place called Street, a Roman milestone ploughed up 
some years ago, and embellished with a Latin inscription by the 
historian Lingard, — the original lettering concisely informing 
the traveller that he is "M.P. LIII." — 53 miles — ^from some- 
where. To Middleton, the parish of Sedbergh succeeds, and 
though visible signs of the track are obliterated, the proba- 
bility is, that it is hidden under the present highway, and 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 23 

that having crossed the Rawthey near Marthwaite New Bridge, 
it held onwards by the Lune, to the eneampment at Low 
Borrow Bridge aforesaid. Whether this was the actual route 
pursued by Agricola in his famous march to the North, in 
the year 79, as is maintained by Mr. Cornelius Nicholson in 
his "Annals of Kendal/' — or whether his route lay closer to 
the coast, as others surmise, and as the words of Tacitus 
would seem to suggest, — is a question which may be left to 
the discussion of experts, and the light of future discovery.* 
But whatever difficulties may attend the identification of 
stations in Britain with the names in the Roman road-books, 
it is clear that a road thus piercing the heart of the country, 
from Over Burrow to the Roman wall, would be one of great 
importance to the conquerors, and the foot of Marthwaite must 
often have resounded with the tramp of the Roman legion- 
aries as they passed to and fro. 

That a station of so much interest as that at Borrow 
Bridge should have made antiquaries eager to label it with 
a Roman title, is only natural; and the name Alone^ which 
occurs among those of Roman stations in Britain, bears too 
close a resemblance to that of the Lune (or Lon) to be over- 
looked. It was thought that excavations in and about the 
camp, under competent supervision, could hardly fail to bring 
to light some inscription which would conclusively settle the 
question of its identity. This expectation was unfortunately not 
realised, when, in 1883, an exploration was conducted under 
the auspices of the Cumberland and Westmorland Archaeo- 
logical Society ; and though traces of hypocausts, pavements, 

• The rival theories as to the route of Agricola may be found championed in 
the "Transactions of the Cumberland and Westmorland Archaeological Society," 
vol. ill. (compare Mr. Nicholson's " Annals of Kendal," Appendix) ; and in vol. viii. of 
the same "Transactions," there is an interesting account of the exploration of the 
Borrow Bridge Camp. 



Digitized by 



Google 



24 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

and pottery were met with, this well-defined camp continues, 
as before, anon)rmous. It has served as a quarry for gene- 
rations, and the neighbouring house and bam have been 
erected out of its walls. Facing-stones have been stripped 
off for fresh uses, but the grout-work still left supplies 
abundant proof of its former strength. 

The encampment is best known in this district by the 
annual sheep-fair held on it in the autumn. The farmers 
who then find secure footing on its firm surface of nearly 
four acres, capable, it may be, of accommodating a cohort of 
480 men, are not likely to interrupt the absorbing computation 
of profits and losses with the sentimental consideration that 
they may be treading on the bones of centurions and soldiers, 
who, in this bleak fastness, succumbed to the accidents of 
mortality, sixteen or seventeen hxmdred years ago. They are 
as little likely to consider why a number of roads should have 
been made to converge at this particular field. But if we 
let our imagination wander back to the period of the Roman 
occupation, it is easy to realise that from that portion of the 
great arterial way which lay between Over Burrow, or Caster- 
ton, and Borrow Bridge, there would be cross-roads of minor 
importance, branching in various directions. It is very probable 
that many old roads still existing were of this nature, and 
though our district has not been sufficiently explored with a 
view to the connection of its lanes and tracks in this respect, 
I think it highly probable that the town of Sedbergh lies 
between two of these smaller lines of intercommunication. 
From Borrow Bridge there is an old road, still in use, run- 
ning in a direct course along the side of the fell, and through 
Howgill, to Sedbergh. It would then seem to have held on 
its way past Thursgill to Cautley, there crossing the Rawthey 
and scaling the side of Bluecaster. The name Bluecaster at 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 2^ 

once suggests the existence at some time of a camp, but the 
site of it is now unknown. From here, the road goes forward 
to "The Street" in Ravenstonedale, a place which in its 
name announces its original character as a sfra^a ma, or 
Roman, way. Next running past Kirkby Stephen to Brough, 
it would there connect itself with another great military road, 
thus serving as a link of communication between two main 
lines of transit — the one from Chester, as observed before, and 
the other from York, the head-quarters of the generalissimo 
in command of the North. The occurrence of fields with the 
name of Borwens, both in Howgill and Cautley, is confirma- 
tory of this view. Indeed, the situation of Castlehaw (or 
Castle How) which is such a prominent feature in the 
landscape at Sedbergh, near the track of this cross-road, 
would suggest the probability of its having been a Roman 
exploratory mound originally, though this view in no way 
militates against its subsequent adoption as the site of a 
Saxon stronghold. Such exploratory mounds were not un- 
common, especially where the road crossed a stream, and 
indeed there is a conical eminence of this kind not far north 
of Borrow Bridge, at a ford of the Lune, and bearing, as in 
this case, the name of Castle How. Of the utility of the 
Sedbergh mound as a look-out, commanding the fords of the 
Rawthey and the entrance to the valleys of Cautley, Garsdale, 
and Dent, there can be no question. 

But let us return to the main road as it approaches us from 
Middleton, and there we find another old lane leading in the 
direction of Sedbergh, but this time on the south side of the 
Rawthey. Near Amit Holme it crosses the Dee, and here there 
is a stony eminence, which some have regarded as a relic of 
the Romans, and which may well have been intended to guard 
the ford at this place. From here the lane continues until it 
C 



Digitized by- 



Google 



2b SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

reaches the highroad to Dent, where its course is apparently 
interrupted, but may be traced on the other side of the 
highway till it joins the old road over the Riggs. Passing 
through Millthrop it then probably crossed the Rawthey 
somewhere in the vicinity of Sedbergh, and joined the road 
through Howgill already described. 

Between Sedbergh and Millthrop there is, or rather was, 
at the beginning of last year (1890), a rectangular elevation 
in a field adjoining the road to Dent, which the Ordnance 
Map of 1852 indicates as the supposed site of a Roman camp. 
No attempt to ascertain the truth of this supposition had 
been made by digging, and when the Town Cricket Club 
recently acquired a lease of the field for the practice of 
the national game, and proceeded to level the ground, it was 
hoped that the mystery which lay hid in the manifestly arti- 
ficial parallelogram, would be unravelled. Popular tradition 
believed that a castle had stood there, but, beyond this 
meagre allegation, it had nothing definite to reveal. The 
rectangle having been vigorously assailed with pickaxe and 
spade, the discovery of foundations and comer-stones soon 
showed that a building of considerable dimensions had once 
existed. The clay in the hollow in front of the elevation 
suggested a moat, while the discovery of an oval-shaped well, 
several feet long, and broad and deep, lined with masonry, 
and still full of water, showed how the fluid could have been 
obtained to fill it. A few fragments of plain red earthenware 
were turned up, and a bunch of screws of elaborate antique 
workmanship was found embedded in the clay. Several coins, 
chiefly copper, showed that former occupants had put money 
in their purses, but had failed to keep it there. Among these, 
I was shown a shilling of Henry VII., a farthing of William 
and Mary (1694), and another of George III. I am bound 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 27 

to admit that I observed nothing distinctly characteristic of 
Roman occupation, but it is possible, nevertheless, that a 
camp may have been partially cleared and then utilised as a 
building-site. Of the latter circumstance — that there has been 
a dwelling-house here of some kind — there cannot be any 
reasonable doubt. I am inclined to believe that a manor- 
house, with its moat, best satisfies the conditions of the 
problem; and the name of the field — Hall-garth — seems dis- 
tinctly to point in this direction. I have been thus carefiil 
to record the results of the excavation, because the level- 
ling of the field has almost obliterated all traces of the 
previous elevation, and no marked inequalities of the ground 
will henceforth tempt the curious inquirer to further in- 
vestigation. 

But now the scene changes. When the Romans had been 
in Britain about 400 years, the increasing pressure of various 
Teutonic tribes on their frontiers obliged them to withdraw 
their forces to defend their possessions at home. Awake to 
the opportunity, the Picts and Scots lost no time before 
renewing their raids across the border, and the natives, left to 
shift for themselves, and enfeebled by long dependence, were 
ill able to cope with their fierce assailants. Saxon pirates, 
who had for some time infested the coasts of Briltain, but 
who had hitherto been kept at a respectful distance by 
Roman pikes, now felt themselves able to land, and look 
about a little. The Britons, it is said at their wits' end what 
to do, even invited their help against the marauding Picts — 
an invitation to which they were not slow to respond. But 
when their task was accomplished, and they had gained a 
footing in the land, they were loth to leave it, and, in fact, 
declined to entertain the suggestion. Fresh contingents of 
Angles, and Saxons, and Jutes, kept pouring in from the 



Digitized by 



Google 



28 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

territory about the mouth of the Elbe; and as the Angles 
appropriated the largest share of the country, they naturally 
succeeded in bestowing their name upon it, and it thus came 
to be known as Angle-land, or England. They occupied the 
district with which we are concerned, pushing the poor Britons 
to the mountains of the west. The policy of the Romans 
had been not to oust the people from the conquered country, 
but only to keep them under control ; but the Angles, as far 
as possible, swept out the inhabitants with the rigour of a 
domestic spring-cleaning, and having made themselves masters 
of the situation, comfortably seated themselves in their places. 
As we lie just on the borders of the old British kingdom of 
Strathclyde, as the mountainous parts of the west in which 
the Britons took refuge were called, a mixture of the two races 
would hardly be avoidable here. It is probable, therefore, 
that we have a few drops of Celtic blood lingering in our 
veins, but it is to the Angles, and especially to their successors 
the Danes, that we must in the main ascribe our paternity. No 
longer bound up with the fortunes of the Brigantes, we now 
leave Celt and Roman behind us, and start afresh as Saxons 
(more strictly Angles) of Deiray as the country between the 
Humber and the Tees was called in the Latinised form of 
its name. Up to this time — the end of the sixth century — 
the Angles had been heathens ; but some years previously, 
as Gregory, the deacon, was walking through the streets of 
Rome, his attention was arrested by the white skin and fair 
hair of some handsome boys exposed for sale in the slave- 
market. Inquiring into their antecedents, according to the 
oft-repeated story of Venerable Bede, he learnt that they 
were Angles, and he exclaimed that they had indeed angels* 
faces. When the information had been elicited that they 
were natives of Deira, it was only fitting, he said, that they 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 2g 

should be rescued de trd Dei — from Divine ire ; and when he 
found that the name of their king was -^Ua, Alleluia! he 
exclaimed, should be sung in those parts. Whether these 
beautiful Anglian youths were Sedbergh lads, I am unable to 
say ; nor am I concerned to defend the elaborate puns of the 
pla)rful deacon. In spite of these, Gregory was a lovable 
man and a true-hearted Christian, and when he became Pope 
of Rome he did not forget those angel-faced youths, but 
despatched Augustine to win over the English to the Christian 
faith. The direct influence of Augustine's mission, however, 
did not spread far out of Kent ; and it was not till after his 
time, when Edwin of Deira had become king of all Northum- 
berland,* that Paulinus, the chaplain of his Kentish bride, 
attempted the evangelisation of the North. Then Gregory's 
good wishes began to bear fruit; Deira corresponded with 
the interpretation he had so aptly put upon the name, and 
Alleluia! was sung in the realm of ^Ua. The good work 
begun by Paulinus was obscured for a while, but shone out 
again under the rule of King Oswald, whose piety is com- 
memorated in the dedication of the church in the neighbouring 
parish of Ravenstonedale. This time help came not from the 
South, but from the North ; not from Rome, but from the old 
Celtic Church of lona. At the request of the king, who had 
dwelt as an exile in lona, a monk, named Aidan, was sent to 
preach to the Northumbrians, and he did it so effectively that 
his mission became by far the most important factor in the 
conversion of the North. 

But to turn from ecclesiastical to secular matters. When 
the cessation of war gave the Anglo-Saxons leisure to devote 



• Not the shrunken remnant now called by this name, but the country between 
the Humber and the Tyne. Henceforward we will call it Northumbria, to avoid 
confusion. 



Digitized by 



Google 



30 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

themselves to peaceful industry, the village communities with 
which they had been familiar in their former homes would 
naturally be reproduced in England. Of these family settle- 
ments kinship was the bond, and agriculture the usual pursuit. 
The descendants of the same ancestor, or in other words, the 
followers of the same leader, dwelt together on their separate 
plot of country, surrounded by a border of woodland which 
served as their mark or boundary. It is not improbable 
that we have traces of this at Sedbergh in the names of 
Marthwaite (as if Mark-thwaite) and of March Hill, near the 
town. Thus arose the totis and hanCs which abound in our 
country — Middleton, Casterton, Clapham, Bentham, and the 
like. Here and there, instead of the isolated and independent 
dwellings of the commonalty, there were larger estates, under 
the control and jurisdiction of some lordly thane or other 
chief follower of the king. His dwelling was the burh or 
stronghold of the place, and judging from remains of this 
kind in various parts of the country, the characteristic feature 
of it was a conical eminence on which would rest the wooden 
house of the lord, while the huts of his retainers occupied the 
platform at the base. A judicious environment of palisades 
and ditches would give additional security and afford a refuge 
for man and beast in times of danger. It is to one of these 
Saxon fortifications that Sedbergh owes its chief glory in an 
antiquarian point of view. From whatever direction the town 
is approached, the green eminence which rears its ancient 
head at the eastern end is a conspicuous and striking object, 
and gives an air of old-world quaintness to the little town 
which probably originated under its protection, and which now 
nestles snugly at its foot. It is still fresh and strong after 
the lapse of a thousand years, and may even before that date 
have served an apprenticeship to the purposes of defence in 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 



31 



Roman days. The mound seems to have been at first a 
natural drift-hill, afterwards scarped by the hands of man 
into a shapelier form, and the rectangular area below it is 
nearly as sharp and distinct as if it had been marked out 
yesterday. * 







The etymology of Sedbergh is not without its difficulties, 
but that it is to be found in connection with this notable 
mound is scarcely questionable. Burgh^ burrow^ or borough^ 
and bury^ are variants of the same original burghy and 
our Saxon forefathers have scattered them about the coimtry 



• Those who desire to see a more detailed account of a Saxon stronghold should 
consult the second chapter of Clark's "Mediaeval Military Architecture in England.** 



Digitized by 



Google 



32 SEDBERGH, GARSDAXE, AND DENT. 

and in our neighbourhood with no niggard hand. They 
indicate a fortification [burh) of some kind, and generally 
in connection with a hill (beorh) . Burton, Over Burrow, Ingle- 
borough, and Dewsbury — all but the last within a moderate 
distance of each other and of Sedbergh— exemplify some of 
the variations in popular speech which the original burh is 
capable of undergoing. Across the border the favourite form is 
burghy and Jedburgh, Dryburgh, and Edinburgh readily occur 
to the mind as instances. Sedbergh, too, is frequently written 
Sedburgh by strangers, and maps and gazetteers to some 
extent support their practice. But though the spelling is 
tempting, it is by no means to be accepted off-hand as correct. 
That it leads to confusion at the post-office with Jedburgh is 
perhaps a small matter, but long-continued local usage, which 
must always count for much, is dead against it. We can 
plead in support of Sedbergh as against Sedburgh the high 
antiquity of Domesday Book, and the invariable usage of the 
Parish Registers for three hundred years. While, therefore, 
existing remains assure us that there was a "burh" at 
Sedbergh, and the name might well have been Sedburgh in 
consequence, I take it that the spelling "bergh" is not fortu- 
itous and unnecessary, but preserves a reference to the hill 
{beorh) on which the fortification was constructed. So much 
for the latter syllable. The first part of the name, however, 
is not so obvious. The spelling has varied between Sad and 
Sed in former times; and as Sadda or Sedda is declared to 
have been a Saxon personal name, I have met with no 
suggestion so probable as that of Dr. Whitaker, who concludes 
that Sedbergh means "Sadda's bergh" — the fortified hill of 
some Saxon magnate who fastened his name to the place 
where he dwelt, but whose fame is not recorded in the page 
of history. There is a kind of duplicate of the name, under 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 33 

the form of Sedbury, which appears at more than one place 
in England associated with ancient earthworks, and in these 
cases the explanation "Sedda's burh" is similarly appropriate. 
The transference of the name from the stronghold to the town 
or country adjacent, is a feature which might be paralleled by 
numerous instances. 

Sedberghy Sedhurghy SedberwCy Sadboroughy Sadhety Sedber — all 
of which are met with in manuscript or printed matter — show 
a reasonable amount of elasticity in the form of the name ; 
and even Sebber — the ultimate residuum of indolent articulation 
— is occasionally heard from native lips. But predominant 
usage having at length settled the orthography as Sedberghy 
the next problem which confronts the stranger is how to 
pronounce the word. He generally exhibits a prejudice in 
favour of an unmistakable enunciation of the gy and it is 
not until a considerable experience of the native pronunciation 
has produced its due effect, that he consents to consign the 
perplexing guttural " to dumb forgetfulness a prey." Perhaps 
it may diminish the hesitation of our supposed visitor if 
we remind him that a silent gh in English words is no 
infrequent occurrence. Nobody thinks of pronouncing the 
guttural in Mansergh and Sizergh : why should it be impera- 
tive to do so in ^Sedbergh'? And have we not numbers of 
words like lighty daughtery throughy in which the g is not 
heard ? The fact seems to be that h was itself a guttural 
in Anglo-Saxon; and when people began to be oblivious of 
this circumstance, g was inserted as a crutch to reinforce 
the enfeebled sound, and beorh was written bergh accordingly. 
But all in vain. Englishmen found out more agreeable uses 
for the throat than the production of diflScult sounds. The 
invalid and its crutch — the h and the g — came to be alike 
disregarded, and now survive only as shadowy phantoms 
D 



Digitized by 



Google 



34 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

from which all resonant vitality has escaped. But this, to 
speak in reproachful Carlylese, is "gentle Dulness taking a 
turn at etymology." I can only plead in excuse my desire to 
establish three things, which are not usually present to every 
one's mind at the same time : — that the name of our little 
town should be Sedbergh to the eye, Sedber to the ear, and 
Sadda's berghy or hill-fort, to the understanding. 

After the Angles, Saxons, or Anglo-Saxons, according as 
we may prefer to call them, the next great wave of immigration 
which set in towards this country, was that of the Northmen 
— Danes and Norwegians — ^from whose low-lying or rock-bound 
coasts, indented with innumerable creeks and bays, came the 
bands of adventurers who for centuries unmercifully ravaged 
the shores of western Europe. They were a kind of first- 
cousins of the Saxons, being earlier olBF-shoots from the same 
stock — " chips of the same block," if we look at their similarly 
adventurous character, we shall perhaps be inclined to call 
them. They worshipped nearly the same gods as the heathen 
ancestors of the Saxons had worshipped; and they spoke a 
language not greatly different. Their principal gods indeed 
are still enshrined in the names of the days of the week, 
which some religionists have scrupled to use in consequence, 
lest even so limited a recognition of their existence should 
be too great honour to bestow on Woden and Thor, and their 
pagan fraternity. The Danes, we read, began to arrive in 
England towards the close of the eighth century, and continued 
to do so for about two hundred years, advancing by degrees from 
mere plundering raids and occasional settlement to organised 
and eventual conquest. They dealt with their Saxon cousins 
pretty much as the Saxons had previously dealt with the 
Britons ; but when they had at length become Christians, and 
provocations to hostility had diminished, similarity of language 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 35 

and manners permitted them without difficulty to coalesce with 
their kinsmen, and to form with them practically one people. 
To the Danes we owe the substitution of "wapentakes" for 
the Saxon "hundreds" in those counties where their influence 
was predominant. The word itself, which means "weapon- 
touching," reminds us of the time when at the appointment 
of a new governor of one of these districts, it was the duty of 
all who owed suit and service, to assemble at some recognised 
centre to take part in the ceremony of touching his weapon 
with their own, in token of fealty. The trysting-place would 
naturally be some well-defined feature of the country, though 
the position of it may not be ascertainable now. The wapen- 
take of Ewecross, to. which we belong, receives no mention 
in Domesday Book, and may therefore, as Dr. Whitaker con- 
jectures, be a later creation on the lines of the earlier divisions. 
In ancient charters, Sedbergh and Ingleton are described as in 
Lonsdale, which leads him to think that these places, as well 
as Burton-in-Lonsdale, were first in the hundred of Lonsdale, 
before they found a resting-place in the wapentake of Ewecross^ 
which he supposes to have been carved out of it. It is just 
possible, however, that the name Lonsdale may have been used 
sometimes not as indicative of a definite territorial division, 
but more generally for the valley of the Lune, and so have 
been capable of being applied to all places within a moderate 
distance of that river. The name of the wapentake, however, 
may still be quoted in illustration of the previous statement ; 
for it seems to suggest that the rendezvous of the inhabitants 
was originally simply a well-known yew tree or cross — a 
preaching station, perhaps, where the people foregathered at 
the great Church festivals — just as the wapentakes of Skyrack 
and Staincross remind us to this day of the "shire oak" and 
the "stone cross," where similar assemblies were held. 



Digitized by 



Google 



36 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

From Lincolnshire to Cumberland — the Danelagh or Danish 
district — the Danes have left frequent traces of themselves in 
the names of places. Wherever we find these ending in by 
or throp (denoting in either case a village), there we surmise 
that Danes once dwelt. From Whitby, northwards, such 
names may readily be found on the map until they thin out 
to nothing in Cumberland. Kirkby Lonsdale, Millthrop, and 
Gawthrop announce the presence of Danes in our vicinity. 
But if by is characteristic of the Danes, ihwaite (a forest clear- 
ing), beck (a stream), and force (a waterfall), are no less 
indicative of the Norwegians ; and while from history we 
learn that the Danes reached us from the west, spreading 
themselves northward from the region of the Humber, the 
evidence of langxiage is equally clear that there must have 
been a very considerable immigration of Norwegians from the 
east, peopling the coast from Chester to the Solway; and 
from the seaboard opposite ourselves, even extending a good 
way up the dales of Yorkshire. It is well known that the 
dialect hereabouts is saturated with Norse forms, and the 
local nomenclature exhibits the same complexion. Our thwatteSy 
as Narthwaite, Sarthwaite, Marthwaite, follow each other with 
the aptness of a rhyming dictionary; but though becks are 
ubiquitous, force is forthcoming only in the solitary instance 
of Black Force. Loki, a Norse personal name, may lie at the 
foundation of Lockbank ; while a faint memory of Thor, the 
Scandinavian storm-god, still lurks in Thursgill. 

The Finkle Streets which exist in several old towns in the 
Danelagh, such as Sedbergh, Kendal, Carlisle, Richmond, and 
York, have tasked the ingenuity of etymologists to account 
for them; and it may perhaps be a moot point still whether 
the name should be referred to the Scandinavian vtnkely an 
elbow or bend. This derivation, however, is as likely as any 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 37 

Other that has been proposed ; and our dear old savoury 
Finkle — ^less savoury now than of yore, however — conforms 
to the custom observable in like cases, and branches off at 
right angles from the main street. It is, etymologically, the 
Bond Street of Sedbergh. 

It was in 876, that a party of Danes took up their quarters 
in the lower part of Northumbria, corresponding to Yorkshire 
that now is; and, in no long time, they made themselves 
masters of the whole. With the varied fortunes of their sub- 
sequent history, we need not much concern ourselves ; suffice 
it to say that soon after the commencement of the eleventh 
century, the whole country, wearied out with incessant in- 
vasions, surrendered its independence to the Danish pluralist 
Canute, who was at one and the same time King, not only 
of Denmark, but of Norway and England too. After another 
generation the Saxon line was restored in the person of 
Edward the Confessor ; and Danes and English, now treated 
impartially, were content to live in mutual amity. The Norman 
Conquest reduced both races to uniform subjection, and the 
notes of intestine discord ceased henceforth to be heard in 
the land. 

Before passing, however, to the next great act in the 
national drama, we may observe that it was a Danish Earl 
of Northumbria, — "warlike Si ward," — ^who, in the reign of 
Edward the Confessor, inflicted well-merited retribution on the 
murderer of the Scottish King, Duncan, and restored the 
fugitive prince, Malcolm, to the throne of his father. But all 
this is recorded in the imperishable lines of Shakespeare, 
and may be read in the tragical story of Macbeth. After 
the death of Siward, the government of Northumbria was 
bestowed on Tostig, or Tosti, a son of the Saxon Earl, Godwin. 
I am sorry to say that Tosti failed to establish friendly 



Digitized by 



Google 



38 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

relations with his northern subjects. No doubt they were 
rude and barbarous, but it did not mend matters to treat them 
with harshness ; and the result was that his Thanes, voting him 
tyrannical, rebelled in good earnest, and had him deposed and 
banished. Tosti, thus unceremoniously released from his duties, 
took a tour on the Continent. Possibly, notwithstanding his 
eviction from the North, he may have entertained some 
thought of being chosen King of England on the death of 
the Confessor; for when Harold, his brother, was promoted 
to that high dignity, he seems to have given vent to his dis- 
appointment by joining Harold of Norway in plundering the 
coast from the Tyne to the Humber, and then sailing up the 
Ouse, to the capture of York. But the English forces stole 
upon the confederates swiftly and unawares, and Harold of 
England won the great battle of Stamford Bridge, while 
Harold of Norway, and Tosti the unfratemal, went down in 
the fray. 

Earl Tosti is interesting to us as a former landowner at 
Sedbergh ; for he is presumably the Tosti mentioned in 
Domesday as having his head-quarters at Halton, in the 
Valley of the Lune, and as being possessed of certain "caru- 
cates" here and in many other places in the neighbourhood, 
in the time of the Confessor. 



Part II. — From the Conquest^ onwards. 

But we are now in the presence of the closing scene of 
national transformation. Henceforth, the succession of races 
is stopped by the arrival of the NORMANS, and the stream 
of history runs with greater uniformity and clearness. 

On the 28th of September, 1066, a few days after the battle 
of Stamford Bridge, Duke William, of Normandy, put in an 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 39 

appearance on the coast of Sussex. He landed without 
opposition, but was in due time encountered by Harold, at 
Senlac, near Hastings. Harold fell, fighting bravely, and the 
battle was decided in favour of William. With Harold dis- 
appeared the only substantial centre of unity. A feeble show 
of resistance was kept up for some time longer, but the im- 
possibility of concerted action soon convinced the great men 
of the kingdom that it was useless to prolong the struggle; 
and accordingly, they discreetly acquiesced in the shadowy 
claims of William, and placed on his head the much-coveted 
crown. 

Though many persons are apt to look upon the Normans 
as a superior race of beings, who, in 1066, condescended to 
guide the destinies of a low-bom mongrel rabble in England 
— a fortuitous concourse of races — they were in reality a 
chance-medley of Danes and Norwegians themselves, who, 
a century and a half before the Conquest, had acquired a 
settlement on the other side of the Channel, just as many of 
their countrymen did on this; and the territory resigned to 
them, to stop their ravages, came to be known as Normandy^ 
or the Northmen's Land. The only difference between them 
and their kinsmen in England was, that the Normans had 
gradually exchanged their native language for that spoken in 
their new country, and had concealed their Northern rough- 
ness under a coating of French polish. Thus the fact remains, 
that as a people we are Teutonic to the backbone, and every 
important immigration has served but to intensify the strain. 

But to return. Duke William was now duly seated on the 
throne of England, but the whole of the country did not 
acknowledge his sovereignty, unhesitatingly and at once ; and 
when a fleet despatched by the King of Denmark sailed up 
the Humber, to dispute the possession of the crown, the people 



Digitized by 



Google 



40 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

of Yorkshire were second to none in their readiness to co- 
operate with the disaffected. If William was brave, he was- 
wrathful and revengeful too. He was out hunting when he 
heard of the capture of York and the slaughter of its Norman 
garrison ; and the ill-timed interruption of his favourite pastime 
doubtless accentuated his ire. He swore at large, '*by the 
splendour of God," that the Northumbrians should feel his 
vengeance ; and he was as good as his word. From York to 
the Tees he harried the country unmercifully — pillaging, 
burning, slaying everywhere. " From York to Durham," says 
an old chronicler, writing sixty years afterwards, "not an 
inhabited village remained ! Fire, slaughter, and desolation, 
made it a vast wilderness, which it continues to this day." 
Such poor remnant of inhabitants as the sword of the Con- 
queror spared, famine and pestilence, following in his wake, 
consumed. How far we participated in this devastation of 
Yorkshire, it is impossible to say. Probably the wooden huts 
of Sedbergh would be burned to the ground, and the habit- 
able part of "Sadda's burh" destroyed, never to rise again. 
Morcar, the rebel earl of Northumbria, became a fugitive, and 
his earldom was abolished. The lands of all who had shown 
any resistance were confiscated right and left, and conferred 
on Norman favourites, or retained in the King's own hands- 
A minute survey of the country was instituted, the results of 
which were recorded in Domesday Book — that invaluable in- 
ventory of owners, tenures, dues of the Crown, and other 
statistics, from which much of our knowledge of the people 
in the latter part of the eleventh century is derived. 

A glance at this national survey discloses some interesting 
particulars. Sixteen years had now passed since the Conqueror's 
unmerciful desolation of the North, but sixty were not suflB- 
cient to obliterate the effects of his fury; and we are not 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 41 

surprised to find that in respect of population and cultivation 
Yorkshire, in proportion to its great extent, lags sadly behind 
the less harassed shires. As we lack in numbers, however, 
we must be content to exceed in area; and we see that old 
" Evrvicscire " (Yorkshire) boldly crosses the Lune in our 
neighbourhood, lays hold of large portions of modern Lanca- 
shire, Westmorland, and Cumberland, and with one hand on 
the German Ocean and the other on the Irish Sea, claims 
possession of all that lies between, and coolly declares that 
Kirkby Lonsdale and Kendal, and other such westerly places, 
are in his own West Riding. This curious divergence from 
modem boundaries, which made Yorkshire much bigger even 
than it is now, is due to the circumstance that the three 
counties above-mentioned had not yet attained a separate exist- 
ence, or become known by their present names. They were, 
in fact, fragments of the old British kingdom of Strathclyde, 
which, during the gradual process of disintegration, had been 
variously distributed among the neighbouring shires. The 
southern part of what is now Lancashire, had become attached 
to Cheshire; while its northern part, and the bottom of 
Westmorland, from its present boundary near Sedbergh, were 
not then within the kingdom of England at all, but formed 
part of the dominions of the Scottish king, Malcolm Canmore. 
Thus while Sedbergh, on the Yorkshire side of the Howgill 
range of hills, duly appears in the survey, the adjoining district 
of Ravenstonedale, which is on the Westmorland side, and was 
doubtless among the possessions of Malcolm, finds no* mention. 
It wcis reserved for the Conqueror's son, Rufus, to put back 
the "canny Scot" beyond the Solway, to claim Carlisle and 
the land about Carlisle as English ground, and to establish 
the boundary line between England and Scotland, as it now 
exists. 

E 



Digitized by 



Google 



42 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

But looking more closely at the Domesday record, we see 
that Earl Tosti had enjoyed large possessions in the valley 
of the Lune. From his head-quarters at Halton, near Lan- 
caster, he looked out over twenty-two manors of various sizes, 
all his own. Then, as we come northwards, Kirkby Lonsdale 
{Cherchebt) and Middleton are assigned to one Torfin ; but 
presently, Tosti comes in again at Inglestune^ Castretune^ 
Berebrune^ and Sedberge (Ingleton, Casterton, Barbon, and 
Sedbergh), and other places, to the tune of fifteen additional 
manors — appendages in some sort of the superior manor of 
Whittington [Wttetu7ie\ Possibly, Garsdale may be included 
in Sedbergh; but Dent, which is not mentioned here, we shall 
see reason to recognise under a thin disguise elsewhere, when 
we come to treat of that particular dale. The information 
^ven us respecting these places is meagre, being principally 
restricted to a statement of the number of carucates in each. 
We know, however, that in the background of these carucates 
there lies a system of agriculture and a set of social relations 
very diflFerent from those which prevail at the present day. 
Rent, as we understand it, did not exist, but the land was 
held in villenage — that is, the lord of each manor assigned 
to a number of dependants such portions of his holding as 
he did not himself require, on condition of their furnishing 
him yearly with so much produce, and so many days' labour 
on his own demesne. The land was uninclosed, but divided, 
as to the arable part, into acre or half-acre strips by balks of 
unploughed turf; and the uncultivated woodland was pastured 
by the cattle of the villeins in common. This arrangement 
subsisted, substantially in the same form, for some centuries 
after the Conquest ; and in various parts of the country where 
no Enclosure Act has been set in motion, the open-field 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 45 

system is not even yet extinct.* Survivals of this community 
of tillage are not evident at Sedbergh, but the terraces about 
Ingleton and Clapham, which owe their preservation to their 
indestructibility by the plough, are memorials of it. What, 
then, were these carucates or ploughlands? A carucate, we 
are told, was as much land as one plough with its normal 
team of eight oxen could till annually. From the nature of 
the case, it was a variable and uncertain quantity, being 
larger where the soil was light, and less where the operation 
of ploughing was attended with more difficulty'. In some 
places, a carucate was 200 acres, while in others it sank as 
low as 80. Thus, though it would be possible to get an 
approximation by striking the average, it is plain that we 
cannot estimate with precision the amount of land which 
was under cultivation in any particular locality. Suffice it 
then to say that Sedbergh, with its four carucates, compares 
not unfairly with its neighbours, having, indeed, two carucates 
less than Ingleton, but one mor^ than either Casterton or 
Barbon. 

One other point of interest in relation to the Domesday 
account may be noticed. It was the policy of the Conqueror 
to reward his followers with large slices of the land 
which he seized, and the Saxon owners who offered any 
opposition to his designs were unceremoniously evicted, to 
make room for their betters. The lion's share of the spoil 
was, of course, retained in the hands of the King, and this 
was the case with the territory about Sedbergh, which is 
accordingly described cis " King's Land." 

At what time it ceased to be King's Land and was 



* " The English Village Community," by Frederic Seebohm, to which I owe my 
information on this subject, throws much light on the earlier stages of the tenure and 
cultivation of land in this country. 



Digitized by 



Google 



44 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

granted out to others, is a little uncertain, but the probability 
is that it was assigned to Robert de Mowbray, Earl of 
Northumberland, soon after the compilation of Domesday; 
and when he, on account of treasonous practices, forfeited his 
estates, it was transferred to his kinsman, Nigel de Albini, a 
doughty Norman, who thereupon assumed the name of Mow- 
bray, and seated himself in a castle which superseded the 
Saxon *burh' at Burton-in-Lonsdale. Now Nigel de Albini 
— or Nigel de Mowbray, as we ought rather to designate him 
— had a son, Roger de Mowbray, whom we find in feudal 
possession of the whole wapentake of Ewecross in the reign 
of Henry I. This Roger was a most valiant man, and when 
King David, of Scotland, with a motley host of malcontents, 
crossed the border and harried the land as far as North- 
allerton, he, having a considerable stake in the " North 
countree," as well as being a man of mettle and impatient 
of intruders, combined with others of like mind, and at the 
battle of the Standard (1138) sent the Scots flying in hot 
haste back to Carlisle. Roger was also a munificent patron 
of the Church; and as the oldest churches in the wapentake 
exhibit a certain family likeness referable to his era, it is 
conjectured that he must have had a hand in their erection. 
Most probably, therefore, the church at Sedbergh owed its 
origin to the generosity of this same De Mowbray. His 
greatest achievement in this line was the foundation of the 
abbey of Byland, where — if he did not perchance shufile off 
this mortal coil on a crusading expedition in a far-oflF land — 
his bones may have been laid to rest, as the monks of a 
later day, at any rate, were pleased to imagine. 

His great-grandson, Thomas de Mowbray, blossomed into 
a duke in the reign, and under the favour, of Richard II., 
and was a conspicuous personage in the plots and counter- 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 45 

plots of that distracted time. As is well known, he quarrelled 
with Henry of Bolingbroke, Earl of Hereford, and was about 
to try conclusions with him by wager of battel, when the 
king cut short the performance by summarily banishing both, 
— Mowbray, duke of Norfolk, to die of a broken heart at 
Venice ; and Bolingbroke to return to wear the crown of 
England cis Henry IV. 

Hitherto, with slight intermissions, the manor of Burton 
and its dependencies had remained with the Mowbrays, but 
Isabel, the daughter of the exiled duke, by her marriage with 
James Lord Berkeley, carried them to that family. In the 
next generation they were sold to Thomas Stanley, the first 
Earl of Derby, whose son. Sir Edward Stanley, of Hornby 
Castle, led the bowmen of Lancashire at the Field of Flodden 
(i5i3)> and for his prowess was created Lord Monteagle by 
Henry VIII. His praise is sung at large in the old ballad of 
"Flodden Field," supposed to have been written by Richard 
Jackson, schoolmaster at Ingleton, about fifty years after the 
event ; and something of this has filtered into " Marmion." 

"The war, that for a space did fail, 
Now trebly thundering swelled the gale, 

And — Stanley I was the cry ; 
A light on Marmion's visage spread. 

And fired his glazing eye : 
With dying hand, above his head, 
He shook the fragment of his blade, 

And shouted * Victory !— 
Charge, Chester, charge ! On, Stanley, on 1 ' 
Were the last words of Marmion." 

Two more generations passed away, and the barony of 
the Monteagles devolved upon an only daughter, Elizabeth, 
who married Edward Parker, Lord Morley. Their son, 
William, in the first year of the reign of James I. (1603) 



Digitized by 



Google 



46 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

succeeded to the title of Lord Monteagle in right of his 
mother, and had the good fortune to be the discoverer of the 
Gunpowder Plot, in commemoration of which innumerable 
bonfires have blazed every fifth of November from that day 
to this. 

But the chief lords of large districts hoi den directly from 
the Crown, had in like manner under-tenants of smaller 
portions dependent on themselves, whose connection with the 
respective manors assigned to them would be even closer and 
more intimate. Such, in relation to Sedbergh and around, 
was Adam de Staveley, Lord of Staveley, Sedbergh, and Dent, 
in the days of King John. He traced his pedigree to 
Aykfrith, a Danish noble, who, if old genealogies say true, 
had himself, in the time of Canute, stood in a similar relation 
to Askrigg, Sedbergh, and Dent. Adam died in 1225, and 
Alicia, his daughter and heiress, married Henry Fitz-Ranulph, 
Lord of Ravensworth, with whose descendants, the Fitz-Hughs, 
the manors of Sedbergh, Garsdale, and Dent, continued down 
to the commencement of the reign of Henry VI. But these 
personages, though more or less considerable once, are to us 
now little else than names ; and with a hurried nod of recog- 
nition we pass on to Sir Thomas Strickland, of Sizergh Castle. 
The lordship had become parcelled among a variety of hands — 
Roger Otway and Sir Richard Thexton in especial — and in 
the 43rd year of Elizabeth, Sir Thomas purchased it of the 
joint-owners, and reunited the manorial fragments. With his 
descendants, in spite of some lawsuits, it has remained to the 
present day, and we are still periodically summoned to the 
"Court Leet or Law Day and View of Frankpledge with the 
Court Baron and Customary Court of the Lord of the Manor 
of Sedbergh," for the payment of divers feudal acknowledg- 
ments, as " in the brave days of old." 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 47 

One incident connected with the tenure of the manor of 
Sedbergh in the last century seems worthy of mention. 
Shortly before 1744, the Mr. Strickland of that date took it 
into his head to run a stone wall round a portion of Bluecaster, 
the ruins whereof are still a puzzle to the uninitiated tourist 
who adventures himself on that bleak hill-side. The inhab- 
itants were aggrieved at this proceeding, and a lawsuit ensued. 
The cause of the complainants was upheld by Braithwaite 
Otway, Esq., of Ingmire Hall, who, being learned in the law, 
and well provided with the wherewithal, not only conducted 
the case to a successful issue, but paid the expenses himself. 
How deeply the feelings of his clients had been stirred, we 
may partly perceive from the outburst of gratitude which, 
" in his lifetime, but without his knowledge," they hastened to 
inscribe on a gigantic monument. They placed it, however, 
in a quarter not usually selected for such commemorations — 
the parish church — where all and sundry may still read how 
the good counsellor came to the rescue of the distressed 
dalesmen. 

'* In the year 1744, Gratitude obliged the Parishioners of Sedbergh to 
" erect this Monument in memory of BRAITHWAITE OTWAY, Esqr.. their 
** generous Benefactor; whose singular Humanity, Beneficence, and Integrity 
** ought never to be forgotten. When BLUECASTER was Inclosed, with 
**an Intent to take it from them, and many Impositions took place. He 
"voluntarily defended their Cause at his own Expence; and with great 
*• Assiduity recovered their Rights, and firmly established them in their 
*• antient Properties. A Judicious and noble Patriot of his Country, a 
*' strenuous Defender of the Poor, and an ardent Lover of Justice; a bright 
** and shining Example to the Rich and Potent, whose amiable Conduct 
"justly merits their imitation.'' 

After this climax to manorial vicissitudes it may be well 
to draw breath for a moment, and then turn to a more tran- 
quillising subject. Let it be the old Church, whose history, 



Digitized by 



Google 



48 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

left far in the rear, we will now endeavour to bring forward 
a little. It is the opinion of Dr. Whitaker, that it came into 
existence "in the great church-building era of Henry I." 
(1100-1135), when the parish most likely was separated from 
that of Kirkby Lonsdale, and a substantial if not beautiful 
Norman edifice arose under the auspices of the munificent 
Roger de Mowbray. 

To whom the advowson of the Church appertained for a 
considerable period after the supposed date of its foundation, 
is unknown. But about the year 1300, a gallant knight. Sir 
Andrew de Harcla — a member it would seem of the ancient 
family of De Harcla, who resided at Hartley, near Kirkby 
Stephen — was doing good service for his liege lord, Edward II., 
on the northern borders. In 13 15 the Scots, under Robert 
Bruce, besieged Carlisle for ten days with all the resources of 
military ingenuity which they could muster, but Sir Andrew, 
the Governor, was too much for them ; and on the eleventh 
day they turned their faces homewards with such material 
consolation as they could extract from the beeves which fell 
in their way. 

Six years later. Sir Andrew swooped down on the rebellious 
Earls of Lancaster and Hereford, at Boroughbridge, as they 
were endeavouring to effect a junction with their Scottish 
allies, and routed them utterly. The delight of the king was 
unbounded, and as a reward for this achievement, Sir Andrew 
woke up one fine morning to find himself Earl of Carlisle, 
with lands and rents to correspond. Earls were not so plenti- 
ful then as now^ and an earldom meant, practically, the general 
control of a county, or of a shire at the least. 

But the distinction in this case, if splendid, was brief. 
The coronet had scarcely had time to settle comfortably on 
the head of the new Earl, when the Scots again hurried past 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 



49- 



Carlisle, burning and pillaging all the way to Lancaster, and 
even further. How they could have escaped the once vigilant 
eye of Earl Harcla seemed passing strange. Suspicions of 
collusion were aroused, the Sheriff of Cumberland was autho- 
rised to effect an arrest, and Sir Geoffrey le Scrope and other 
commissioners completed the business by condemning De 
Harcla, as an arrant traitor, to be hanged, drawn and quartered, 
with circumstances of the utmost barbarity. The executioners 
literally made mincemeat of poor Harcla, the chief fragments 
of his dismembered body being handed out to four towns in 
the North — Carlisle, Newcastle, York, and Shrewsbury — while 
the head, which had been graced with a coronet, was reserved 
to grin and blacken on London Bridge, as a warning to all 
traitors about to be. The memory of De Harcla, notwith- 
standing, has been cherished with kindliness in the North ; his 
misfortunes have been regarded with pity; and many to this 
day, in spite of all that has been alleged against him, would 
fain believe in his innocence! 

His possessions, as a matter of course, were forfeited to 
the crown ; and among them was one half-share in the advow- 
son of Sedbergh Church, which was afterwards bestowed on 
Sir Greoffrey le Scrope, a leading member of the commission 
which condemned him. This Sir Geoffrey, an offshoot from 
the Scropes of Bolton, was the founder of the distinguished 
family of this name — the Scropes of Masham. Though bred 
to the law, he could flourish the sword as adroitly as he 
handled the pen, and he had large opportunities of perfecting 
his military experience in the French and Scotch wars of 
Edward III. After he had helped to dispose of De Harcla, 
his legal promotion followed rapidly. In the succeeding year 
he was raised to the Bench, and again, after a few months, 
to the Chief Justiceship. The advantage he derived from the 
F 



Digitized by 



Google 



50 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

forfeited possessions of De Harcla, at Sedbergh, was apparently 
not confined to church patronage, but had a more tangible 
evidence in the estates which, long after, Sir Richard Thexton, 
in the time of Elizabeth, conveyed to Sir Thomas Strickland 
and his heirs, as commonly called or known by the name of 
" Scrope'.s Lands." Sir Geoffrey was not long in meeting with 
a suitable recipient for the ecclesiastical plum which had 
fallen into his hands. It so happened, that in one of their 
incursions in the reign of Edward II., the Scots had fallen 
foul of Coverham Abbey, and had so harassed and pillaged 
the poor monks, that they were on the verge of bankruptcy, 
and were crying out amain. It was, perhaps, not unfitting 
that De Harcla's half-share in the advowson of Sedbergh 
should go to repair losses sustained by Scottish marauding; 
and Sir Geoffrey, the Chief Justice, with the entire approval 
of the king, conferred it, together with three "bovates" or 
oxgangs of land (about forty acres) and the appurtenances 
"in Sadberg in Lonesdale," on the disconsolate monks of 
Coverham. 

But what had become of the other moiety of the advow- 
son ? A fragmentary deed relating to the Abbey of St. Agatha, 
at Easby, near Richmond, partly explains. It had been con- 
ferred on that house previously to the receipt by Sir Geoffrey 
of the other half; and it is thought that it must have been 
transferred to that worthy, whose family were undoubted 
patrons of St. Agatha's, in order to enable him to make a 
handsome donation of the whole to Coverham. Here the 
remains of Sir Geoffrey, on their arrival from Ghent, in 
Flanders, where he died in 1340, were fitly deposited; and 
with this monastery Sedbergh remained united, in matters 
ecclesiastical, until the dissolution of the religious houses, the 
church being served by some member of the fraternity at a 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 51 

not too extravagant rate of remuneration, and the bulk of 
the emoluments going* to augment the general income of the 
brotherhood. In this way the Abbey must have profited not 
a little ; for when Henry VIII. swept the revenues of the 
monasteries into his coffers, it was found that the tithes of 
" Sedberwe," appropriated to Coverham, were worth ;^ 41 10^. 
a year — no inconsiderable sum, when it is remembered that 
the purchasing power of money at that date was more than 
tenfold its present value. The king, however, had the grace 
to make a better use of the income derived to the Abbey of 
Coverham from the parish of Sedbergh than he did in many 
other like cases; for, about a month before his death, he 
endowed Trinity College, Cambridge, and gave to that noble 
foundation, what it still retains, the rectorial tithes and the 
patronage of the living. 

Smaller pickings from Sedbergh found their way to the 
Abbeys of Jervaulx and Cockersand, as well as to the Priory 
of Conishead ; and this intimate connection of the parish with 
the monasteries of the pre-Refomiation times, enables us to 
account for the interest which the people of Sedbergh and 
Dent exhibited in the great movement, the importance of 
which, it seems to me, will justify a little detail. 

When Henry VIII. had succeeded in substituting his own 
supremacy in church matters for that of the Pope, there was 
much spoliation of the religious houses on the ostensible plea 
of cleansing the land of popery, but under the powerful motive 
also, we cannot doubt, of replenishing the royal exchequer in 
the readiest way. The Reformation was a glorious event, and 
the parent of incalculable blessings, but the means by which 
it was brought about were not always defensible. The stately 
homes of religion, nowhere more remarkable than in York- 
shire, which had been founded and endowed by the piety of 



Digitized by 



Google 



5 2 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

centuries — very poems of architectural loveliness, and majestic 
even in their ruins — were dismantled without remorse, and 
their dispossessed inmates driven forth into the world under 
the pretext of crimes, which fuller evidence has, in many cases, 
shown to have been the interested exaggerations of the visitors 
appointed by the King. No wonder that the thought of the 
apprehended destruction of so much beauty, and the pillage 
and desecration of sacred vessels and appliances, should have 
fired the hearts of the people with a sense of indignation. 
And when to this is added that the monasteries afforded 
shelter and relief to numbers of the distressed — that the 
strong were provided with work, and the aged and infirm 
with the necessaries of life in the daily dole to the poor — 
the continuance of these establishments must have seemed a 
matter of supreme importance to those who dwelt in the 
surrounding districts. The people, especially in the North, 
were still ardently attached to the old faith, and the principles 
of the Reformation had, as yet, made little or no impression 
upon them. 

Though Henry confined his attention at first to the smaller 
houses, whose income did not exceed £200 a year, it was fore- 
seen that this was but the thin end of the wedge inserted, 
and that the turn of the larger establishments would in due 
time follow. There was, too, a suspicion that the same measure 
which was being meted out to abbeys and priories, would be 
applied before long to the parish churches, and that when 
the ** regulars" had been disposed of, the parochial clergy 
would, in all probability, be subjected to similar pressure. 

It was in Lincolnshire, in the year 1536, that the discontent 
which had smouldered for some time, first broke out into a 
blaze. Here the people assembled themselves to the number 
of 60,000, under a banner displaying the five wounds of Christ 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 53 

and a variety of other emblems; but being badly officered 
and organised, this vast multitude in a short time melted 
away without striking a single blow. The King, however, 
seems to have been driven to shifts to raise money for sup- 
pressing the insurrection; for we find him requiring Thomas 
Cromwell, his vicegerent in ecclesiastical matters, to "tax 
the fat priests," intimating that one church dignitary, with 
exemplary promptitude, had already contributed 200 marks, 
and that Dr. Lupton, the provost of Eton — our own Roger — 
had been good for ;^ioo. 

But the collapse of the Lincolnshire movement was im- 
mediately succeeded by a more formidable outbreak in York- 
shire, where the Kingf's receiver had been able to report that 
from rents and sales of monastic property he had gathered in 
a goodly pile of treasure ; and where the pangs of Dissolution 
were felt more keenly perhaps than elsewhere. The people 
of the northern counties were ready to rise, as one man, for 
the redress of their grievances. The firing of the beacons on 
the lofty hills was to be the signal to speed to the rendezvous. 
Ingleborough lifted its aerial torch ; Winder doubtless sent up 
a responsive glow, and aroused the stout yeomen of Sedbergh 
and Dent. Contingents poured in to the "Pilgrimage of 
Grace*' — for so the movement was designated — until Robert 
Aske, an East Riding gentleman, found himself at the head 
of 30,000 men, resolute of purpose and sensible of wrongs, 
while Henry's available forces were but a third of this number. 
Fortune smiled on the insurgents. Pontefract, Hull, and York 
fell into their hands, and the Archbishop himself was com- 
pelled to join the cause. Skipton and Scarborough were the 
only considerable strongholds in Yorkshire which held out for 
the King. The monks who had been driven from their homes 
were reinstated, and the solemn chant of the worshippers in 



Digitized by 



Google 



54 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

the accustomed services was heard again. The situation was 
now serious enough ; and the King, though he ceased not to 
hector and bully in his lordliest vein, was glad to devote his 
best energies to regaining the upper hand. His forces lay at 
Doncaster, under the command of the Duke of Norfolk, and 
on the opposite side of the Don were the aggrieved commons. 
Numbers and enthusiasm made greatly for the people, and if 
a battle had been fought at once, there can be little doubt 
that the victory would have rested with the Pilgrims. Neither 
side, however, were anxious to shed the blood of their country- 
men. A conference was held on Doncaster bridge, and a 
deputation appointed to submit the grievances of the people 
to the consideration of the King. Meanwhile, hostilities were 
suspended, and Aske had much difficulty in restraining the 
impatience of his followers until the return of the envoys. 
Great, however, is diplomacy ! After much dilatory negotiation, 
he prevailed on the people to accept the offer of the King's 
pardon and the delusive hopes of redress which he held out. 
But the King having obtained his point, and finding in 
occasional attempts at renewed insurrections a convenient 
excuse for retribution, was not slow to inflict it. The Duke 
of Norfolk hastened northwards, martial law was proclaimed, 
and repeated executions fairly quelled the spirit of resistance. 
How many of our dalesmen paid the extreme penalty there 
is no means of knowing; but the monks in particular were 
**tied up" without mercy, and sometimes, it is to be feared, 
without just cause. The Abbot of Jervaulx, for instance — 
Adam Sedbar by name — who had been compelled to accom- 
pany the Pilgrims against his will, was imprisoned in the 
Tower, and eventually hanged at Tyburn. During his incar- 
ceration he found opportunity to carve on the walls his 
initials and the date 1537, which still remain to remind 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 55 

visitors of his miserable fate. He was the last head of the 
stately abbey of Wensleydale, and, unless his name is mis- 
leading, we may fairly assume that he was a native of 
Sedbergh. 

It was in the course of the negotiations at Doncaster that 
Henry VIII. wrote a long letter* to his disaffected subjects, in 
which, replying to the complaint of doctrinal innovations, he 
marvels much " that ignorant people would go about to take 
upon them to instruct Us (which hath been noted somewhat 
learned) what the faith should be!" We do not overlook the 
modest little parenthesis, but surmise that the Defender of 
the Faith, who had once broken a controversial lance with 
Luther, and had since dabbled freely in casuistical theology 
on his own account, would give himself a hug of self-appre- 
ciation as he penned it. As he proceeds he waxes warmer, 
and in language not quite respectful to his petitioners, dubs 
them " brutes and inexpert folks ; " and then towards the close, 
referring to the suggestion that he should dismiss his evil 
counsellors, he becomes decidedly personal and contemptuous. 

"Here, in this final point/' he says» ''which ye, our commons of York- 
** shire, Westmorland. Cumberland, the Bishoprickof Durham, Richmondshire, 
** Craven, Dent, Sedbare, and all other places that have been seduced to 
"this insurrection, do desire, and also in the matter of the whole discourse 
** of your petitions, — we verily think that the rest of all our whole commons 
** of many countries [counties, that is], to whom you be in a manner but a 
"handful, will greatly disdain, and not bear it that you take upon you to 
"set order to us and them, and especially to us, being sovereign lord to 
"you both." 

However vehemently "bluff Hal" might bluster, it is 
certain that he was not so unconcerned as he would have us 

• It is given in full in Lord Herbert of Cherbury's ** Life and Reign of King 
Henry VHI." 



Digitized by 



Google 



56 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

believe ; and one cannot help feeling a surreptitious glow of 
satisfaction that the stout dalesmen of our neighbourhood 
were among the host which caused the rapacious and re- 
morseless despot to tremble in his shoes.* 

To pass on. The foundation and confiscation of Roger 
Lupton's School at Sedbergh, in the reign of Henry VIII., 
and its re-foundation as the Free Grammar School of King 
Edward VI., are scarcely matters of general history, and I 
allude to the subject here merely for the sake of the chronology. 

With the reign of Queen Mary, of unhappy memory, our 
connection was short and decisive. John Bland, the martyr, 
bom in Sedbergh, and brought up by Dr. Lupton, the provost 
of Eton, employed himself in tuition in his earlier years, and 
was, in fact, the instructor of Dr. Faucet, one of the divines 
before whom he was cited for heresy. He (Bland) had at 
that time become Rector of Adisham, in Kent, to the living 
of which he had been presented in all likelihood by Arch- 
bishop Cranmer, in whose patronage the rectory was included. 
Here he had for a pupil Edwin Sandys, afterwards Archbishop 
of York. In that elaborate collection of enormities, so much 
prized by our forefathers — Foxe's Book of Martyrs — there is 
a long account of his troubles in letters to his father, who 
would thus seem to have been of a similar way of thinking. 
According to Bland's statement, the first breeze which heralded 
the approaching storm arose when his own churchwarden, 
who favoured the return of Romanism which Queen Mary 
was desirous of effecting, assailed him in church for setting 
out the Communion Table instead of arranging for the newly- 

• The subject of "Henry VIII. and the English Monasteries," has recently been 
investigated by Francis Aidan Gasquet, a Benedictine monk» in the light of illustrative 
documents. The manifest fairness of his treatment renders his work an admirable 
corrective to the historian Fronde's too flattering estimate of Henry and his motives. 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL fflSTORY. 57 

authorised Altar and Mass. Mr. Churchwarden Austen was 
wild with excitement, and threatened to lay the Table on its 
face. He also fell foul on his rector for having taken down 
"the tabernacle wherein the rood did hang," and other like 
matters; and he affirmed that he would have a priest on the 
spot to say mass the very next Sunday. Sunday came, but 
no priest; but in three weeks more, the churchwarden had 
found his man. When the intrusive Romanist appeared in 
church the rector proceeded to express his views at large,- 
but "the churchwarden and the constable, his son-in-law, 
violently came and took my book from me, and pulled me 
down, and thrust me into the chancel, with an exceeding roar 
and cry." Thus borne down by the spiritual and temporal 
arms of the law at one swoop, the silenced Protestant was 
securely shut up in a side chapel until mass was done. The 
upshot of the matter was that Bland was cited to appear 
before various tribunals ; and it was in the course of one of 
his examinations that the following dialogue took place. Said 
Sir John Baker: — "Bland, ye are, as we hear say, a Scot; 
where were ye bom and brought up ? " (Possibly John's 
northern accent would account for the supposition. Anyhow, 
nmiour had put him too far north.) "I was bom in England." 
" Where ? " " In Sedbergh, and brought up by one Doctor 
Lupton, provost of Eton College." "Well," said Baker, "I 
knew him well. Remain to your bond till afternoon." But 
handle him as they might, John Bland could not and would 
not swallow transubstantiation in its crude form, or indeed 
in any form whatever; and accordingly the last argument of 
baffled theologians was resorted to. On the 12th of July, 1555, 
faggots and stakes were provided in the street of Canterbury, 
the torch was applied, and the immovable and unsubmissive 
Sedbergian, with three others of like mind, magnanimously 
endured the flames. 
G 



Digitized by 



Google 



58 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

In Elizabeth's reign Protestants took heart again, and in 
1569 the old banner of the Pilgrimage of Grace, after thirty- 
three years' rest, was once more unfurled in the North, under 
the Earls of Northumberland and Westmorland, with the object 
chiefly of rescuing the captive Queen of Scots, and of stem- 
ming the advancing tide of reform. Whether the men of 
Sedbergh and Dent were again to the fore, I cannot say; 
but we may well believe that the sentiments which had 
animated them on the former occasion were not yet dead; 
and the movement would attract the sympathy of many, if it 
did not enlist their active support. However this may be, 
the insurrection proved abortive, and after nearly twenty years 
of imprisonment, the fair face of Mary Stuart, which had 
played havoc with many susceptible hearts, was mangled on 
the block. 

The reign of her son, James I. of England and VI. of 
Scotland, under whom England and Scotland were made one, 
and border feuds abated, offers nothing in the way of general 
history to which we can attach ourselves. He granted a 
charter for the foundation of a Grammar School at Dent, 
and netted a little pocket-money by the sale of the manor of 
Garsdale. Altogether, our relations with King James were 
peaceful and prosaic. 

Not so with Charles I., his hapless son and successor. 
In his time the great Civil War broke out which rent the 
nation into two hostile camps, so that there was hardly a 
township where Royalist and Parliamentarian, Cavalier and 
Roundhead, the supporters of kingly prerogative and the 
sticklers for popular liberty, did not unsheathe the sword in 
the interest of King or Commons. 

As a rule, the North stood manfully for Royalty, and Sed- 
bergh and the neighbourhood were loyal to the backbone. 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 59 

No pitched battle was actually fought within a considerable 
number of miles of us, but incidents occurred sufl&ciently near 
to put the good Sedberghians in a flutter of excitement. 
Did not Parliamentary majors, in the merry month of May, 
1648, set upon Sir Philip Musgrave and company, at Kendal, 
and take from him 300 men, and two banners with the motto 
** For God and King Charles " ? And did not Monro's rear- 
guard of Scottish veterans, in the following August, stay so 
long at Kirkby Lonsdale, that the decisive battle of Preston 
was lost and won without it ? Four brothers, Middletons of 
Middleton Hall, fought for the king, and three out of the 
four spilt their blood in his cause. 

Two loyal Sedberghians stand out conspicuously in the 
struggle — Dr. John Barwick, a native of Witherslack, and 
Sir John Otway, of Ingmire Hall. Probably both — certainly 
Barwick — ^had been educated at Sedbergh School, under the 
genial Gilbert Nelson ; and community of sentiment, as well 
as early acquaintance, drew them together in the perilous 
after-days of their London life. Barwick was brought up to 
the Church, and Otway to the Law; and when the storm of 
civil strife was blown over, and Charles II. restored to his 
father's throne, the one was rewarded for his services with the 
deanery of St. Paul's, and the other with the honour of knight- 
hood and offices of legal distinction in the counties of Durham 
and Lancaster. 

Sir John was born in 1620, at Beckside Hall, in Middleton. 
The old hall has been modernised into an ordinary farm- 
house, and shews few marks, externally, of former importance; 
but inside there is some carved oak wainscoting bearing the 
date 1 61 6, and the letters * rOa ' within an elaborate border — 
the initials of Roger and Anne Otway [nie Mayer), the parents 
of the future distinguished counsellor and knight. 



Digitized by 



Google 



^O SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

From Sedbergh, young Otway proceeded to Cambridge, to 
St. John's College, of which he became Fellow at the age of 
nineteen. He was one of the first to be ejected from his 
fellowship by the Parliamentarians, in 1643, but he soon found 
honourable occupation as a Reader, at Gray's Inn. Family 
alliances brought him into relationship with two men of very 
opposite sentiments to his own, for they were both colonels 
in Cromwell's army — Colonel Redman ^or Redmayne), who 
married Otway's sister, Abigail; and Colonel Clobery, who 
married his sister-in-law. Backed up by John Barwick, Otway 
never rested until he had so worked upon the minds of these 
two officers, whose political bias must have been a sore trial 
to him, that he eventually won them over to his own views, 
and converted them into staunch friends of the King. Clobery 
commanded a regiment in Scotland, under General Monk, who, 
like himself, was a Devonshire man, and indeed his kinsman. 
Otway had thus the means of getting at the ear of the 
General through his brother-in-law, and on one occasion, at 
the special request of the King, he undertook a journey to 
Scotland for this very purpose. After the Restoration, Clobery's 
merits were not forgotten. The whilom Cromwellian colonel 
reappears as Sir John Clobery, and does good service against 
the Dutch; and again in the following reign, in Monmouth's 
rebellion, at the battle of Sedgemoor. He died at Winchester, 
in 1687, and was buried in the cathedral, and honoured, as 
he deserved, with a monument bearing a copious Latin in- 
scription. 

The other brother-in-law. Colonel Redman, served in Ireland 
under Henry Cromwell, the younger son of the Protector. 
He was bom in the parish of Kirkby Lonsdale, and left to 
the church there a memorial of his connection with the 
Emerald Isle, in the shape of an estate, which he received for 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 




•3 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 6 1 

his exertions in capturing a castle at Ballinabola, near Kil- 
kenny. The possession, by an English church, of glebe-lands 
in Ireland, is probably unique. The estate is represented as 
now worth £^0 or £^0 a year. Whether the " rint*' has been 
regularly paid of late years, is more than doubtful; but the 
good intentions of the gallant Colonel are in no way im- 
peached by the present untowardly condition of that " dis- 
thressful " country. His popularity with his troops stood him in 
good stead when General Lambert was endeavouring to oppose 
the march of Monk from Scotland. Redman hastened up to 
Yorkshire, from London, and as soon as the Irish soldiers who 
had served under him in Ireland caught sight of their old 
commander, they vowed they would be led by no other officer ; 
and, accordingly, 1500 horsemen followed him without more 
ado, leaving Lambert in the lurch, and clearing the road for 
the passage of General Monk. 

The generous conduct of Braithwaite Otway, son of Sir 
John, has already been related. In his later years Sir John 
settled at Ingmire Hall, where his virtues are worthily repre- 
sented by his descendant, the lady who now owns and adorns 
that delightful home. He was interred in Sedbergh Church, 
a plain stone, lettered * I. O.,' indicating the place of his burial 
near the chancel steps, while overhead a beautiful floriated 
tablet of white marble, put up by " his sorrowful Lady," more 
fittingly commemorates his fame. It is our only historical 
monument, and therefore deserves to be transcribed in full. 

** In pious Memory of y« Worshipful S* lOHN Ottway K* Vice : Chan*" 
*• of y« Dutchy of Lancast" & Chan«" of y« County Palatine of Durham late 
** one of y« Read"* of Grays Inn & one of his Majesty King CHARLES 
• 'y« 2d» Councill Learned in y« Law to whom he was very Instrumental in 
" his Happy Restauration. He lived much Beloved and dyed much Lamented 
"y* 15^ of Oct"" 1693. In y* 74"* year of his Age." 



Digitized by 



Google 



62 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

I must now trace, in brief outline, the career of Otwa^s 
friend, Warwick. He was bom at Witherslack, in Westmor- 
land, in 1 612, and died in 1664; and was fortunate in finding 
an appreciative biographer in his brother. Dr. Peter Barwick, 
Physician in Ordinary to King Charles II., and aforetime, 
along with John, scholar at S^dbergh, and member, in due 
course, of St. John's. He was the younger of the two, and 
when he reached the ripe age of eighty-five, in 1705, he had 
outlived his brother more than forty years. He had many 
estimable qualities, but I must leave him for John, the greater 
hero. The " Life," in Latin, published from Peter's manuscript 
in 1721, was followed three years later by an English trans- 
lation from the sympathetic pen of Hilkiah Bedford. In one 
or other of these volumes, the reader will find an ample 
account of this noble Sedberghian, and will meet with many 
side-lights on the history of the period which he will in 
vain look for elsewhere. The portraits of the two brothers, 
prefixed to the book, are striking by contrast, — Peter, the 
physician, well favoured and in good liking, sustaining, with 
becoming gravity, a voluminous periwig with a cataract of 
curls on each side — John, the clergyman, spare and ascetic, 
"sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought" and ill-health, 
and protecting " the bald polish of his honoured head " with 
the attenuated integument of an unsightly skull-cap. 

There is, however, a suggestion of resolution about his thin 
closed lips, strictly in keeping with what we are told of his 
doings and sufferings. The first time we meet with him in con- 
nection with the Civil War, is in 1642, when Oliver Cromwell, 
member of Parliament for the town of Cambridge, having got 
wind that the University was about to send valuable contribu- 
tions of money and plate to the King, lay in wait for the booty 
on the road where he expected it to pass. The wily Oliver was 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 63 

outwitted by Barwick and others ; for the sinews of war crept 
warily along by-paths, and the substantial expression . of col- 
legiate loyalty was safely deposited in the hands of Charles, 
at Nottingham, on the very day he set up his standard, and 
unfurled the flag of defiance on the castle. Foiled in his plan, 
Cromwell vented his rage on* the colleges, and sent all the 
Fellows he could convict of " malignancy," packing. Barwick, 
undaunted, betook himself to London, the head-quarters of 
the enemy, where, as a chaplain, he was able without exciting 
suspicion, to communicate to the King, at Oxford, what it 
behoved him to know of the doings of his intractable Commons. 
Fortune was unkind to Charles, and after a series of reverses, 
he was provided with apartments in Carisbrooke Castle, under 
strict surveillance. He managed, however, to ingratiate him- 
self with at least one attendant, and by his help, to place in 
the hands of Barwick a cipher, of which he took care to 
keep a duplicate for himself, in a cranny of the wall. By this 
arrangement he was able to enter into communication with 
his adherents in all parts of the country, and their replies 
he interpreted by occasional reference to the oracular chink. 
But in spite of the devotion of his friends, Charles I. termi- 
nated "life's fitftd fever" on the scaffold, and Barwick was 
plunged into grief and consumption. Still he kept up a 
correspondence with the King's son and his ministers abroad, 
though he was sufficiently ill to deem it advisable to make 
arrangements with his friend Otway, for his decent interment, 
in case of his death. In the midst of his prostration, a mean- 
spirited fellow who had feigned to be friendly, betrayed him 
to his enemies, and he was thrust into a dungeon and treated 
with the utmost severity. Neither threats nor promises, how- 
ever, availed to induce the stubborn ecclesiastic to reveal his 
past doings, or to implicate others. By dint of hard pleading. 



Digitized by 



Google 



64 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

and not without risk, Otway gained permission from the regi- 
cide Bradshaw to visit the sick man, expecting to find him 
in the last stage of emaciation and despair. Imagine his 
astonishment on discovering that, so far from killing John 
Barwick outright, prison fare had improved his health, and 
made him quite cheerful. At last a favourable conjuncture 
encouraged his friends to make application for his release, and 
after two years and four months of close confinement, he was 
liberated on condition that he should come up for trial when 
called upon to do so. Happily, that time never arrived; for, 
greatly owing to the urgency of Barwick and Otway, and 
Otway' s relations, the colonels. General Monk led his troops 
fi-om Scotland, and after a little mysterious finessing, gave 
the Parliament unmistakable notice to quit, and recalled the 
exiled Prince to his throne. John Barwick saw the end he 
had striven and longed for, and had his share in the general 
rejoicing. He was chosen Prolocutor of the Lower House of 
Convocation, and was a member of the Savoy Conference 
(1661), in which Episcopalians and Presbyterians met in solemn 
conclave to discuss differences of opinion as to matters of 
religion and ritual, in the hope, on the part of the latter, of 
bringing about a kind of *' Scotch mixture," which, however, 
was declined by the church party, apparently without thanks. 
Berwick received a deanery, and might have been a bishop 
if he had cared for preferment. A more disinterested, devoted, 
and high-souled man, it would be hard to mention. He 
left many bequests, to his native place in especial, but to 
us, the most touching of all are £^0 to his old School, at 
Sedbergh, and " the immortal writings of the King's Father, 
bound in two volumes, as no improper pledge of his love and 
gratitude, to his dearest friend, Mr. John Otway, who declined 
no labour nor danger, that the King's Son might be restored 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 65 

to his throne." One wonders whether these much-prized folios 
are still in existence. Few more interesting memorials of the 
kind could be imagined, than such a souvenir of the aflfec- 
tion entertained by John Barwick towards his "dearest friend,'* 
John Otway. 

Before we take leave of the Civil War and the Restoration^ 
there are two little waifs and strays of information, which 
give us interesting glimpses of Garsdale and Dent in the 
middle of the 17th century. In 1 641, the House of Commons, 
solely on its own authority, drew up a Protestation, and sent 
it about the country for signature. It was a harmless docu- 
ment to look at, for it merely involved a promise to defend 
the King, the Parliament, the Protestant religion, and so forth *y 
but the real design was to impress the people with the notion 
that all manner of plots of dangerous consequence to civil 
and religious liberty, were being hatched in and about the 
Court. Most persons, hereabouts, were deceived by it, and 
signed it readily; but when it reached Garsdale, George 
Heber, gentleman, and Abraham Nelson, "chapman," were 
shrewd enough to discern its drift, and flatly refused to sign 
— ^Abraham "publiquely before the whole dale, in the Church ;" 
and George by letter, wherein he stated that he ought not to 
swear rashly; but if Parliament would be good enough to 
certify him that the paper was "sett out by the King^s 
Ma'tie's authority," he would see what could be done to 
oblige them. Rather rough this on Parliament, which was 
not given to setting out anything "by the King's Ma'tie's 
authority" just then ! 

The other item refers to the rejoicing at Dent after 

Royalty had been reinstated and old times returned. When 

the rushbearing came round, on St. Bartholomew's Day, 

there were great doings in the village, and it was as good as 

H 



Digitized by 



Google 



66 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

a play, if not better, when " Oliver and Bradshaw, Rebellion 
and War, were represented, all decked by times with vizards 
on and strange deformities ; and Bradshaw had his tongue 
run through with a red-hot iron, and Rebellion was hanged 
on a gibbet in the market-place. Then came Peace and 
Plenty, and Diana with her Nymphs — all with coronets on 
their heads — each of which made a several speech, in verses, 
of their loyalty to the King." 

Is it an instance of the hereditary transmission of ingrained 
qualities, that Sedbergh boys still sport their oak-leaves on 
Royal Oak Day, and efifectively jog the memories of their 
companions who omit to appear with the indispensable sprig ? 

From Court and Camp, it is a change, possibly a relief, 
to turn to a hero in the domain of religious controversy. 
The life of George Fox, the founder of the Society of Friends, 
extended over the reigns of Charles I. and II. and the inter- 
vening Protectorate. The Civil War, besides the political 
dislocations which necessarily accompanied it, gave rise to a 
great unsettlement of belief in regard to spiritual matters. 
The removal of restraint, in one direction, let in a flood of 
strange notions and hallucinations, in another. Wild excesses 
were committed in the name of religion ; and many eccentric 
creeds which then sprang up have had their day, and have 
long ceased to be. Amid this chaos it was reserved for 
George Fox, in spite of many singularities, to lay firm hold 
upon a principle of belief and action which has been a 
power from his day to our own. Belief in an inward light 
— an infallible guide to all who were willing to follow it 
implicitly — rendered systems of church-government, and even 
human learning, in his view, unnecessary. A priesthood 
supported by tithes was an anomaly which could show no 
reason for its continuance. The forms and ceremonies of 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 67 

social usage, implying a distinction between individuals which 
did not exist, must be got rid of. No hat ought to be doffed 
to a fellow-man, nor any titles of social courtesy permitted. 
The irrelevancies and insincerities of current speech must be 
discarded. The names of the days of the week, and of the 
months of the year, with their heathen associations, were to be 
replaced by honest numbers; and the plural ^^w, when addressed 
to an individual, must be reduced to the unadorned simplicity 
of thee and thou. Changes like these, which ran counter to 
all the received notions of propriety, were sufficiently startling 
in themselves ; and Fox had an aggressive way of combating 
the views and prejudices of others which did not render his 
innovations more palatable. We can hardly be surprised that 
he should have shared the proverbial fate of reformers — 
persecution ; and as he persistently refused to take an oath 
of any kind when hailed before the magistrates, he became 
acquainted with the insides of more gaols in the kingdom 
than perhaps any other person of his time, — which is saying 
a good deal. 

A man of stalwart frame he was, clad in perdurable 
leather breeches, and with long hair falling on his broad 
shoulders — a man whose piercing eyes flashed with intense 
earnestness as his homely, fluent, forcible harangues riveted 
the attention of his audience. All this, added to the evident 
sincerity of his convictions and his unquailing personal 
courage, combined to produce a preacher and a controver- 
sialist whom multitudes in our northern dales, at every 
opportunity, from miles around, flocked to see and hear. 

He has left a copious ** Journal" of his preaching, expeditions 
during more than forty years at home and in foreign countries ; 
and from this we learn much that is curious about his visits 
to law-courts and steeple-houses, his outpourings in fairs and 



Digitized by 



Google 



68 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

markets and alehouses, and his disputes with judges, magis- 
trates, priests and professors of all kinds. We gather also 
that he paid repeated visits to our neighbourhood, and that 
it was greatly influenced by his teaching. In 1652, as he 
was travelling about Yorkshire, he came in sight of Pendle 
Hill, " a very great and high hill," which he was moved to 
ascend ; and somewhere thereabouts he had a vision of " a 
great people in white raiment by a river side, coming to the 
Lord; and the place that I saw them in," he says, "was 
about Wensleydale and Sedbergh." This augured well for 
Sedbergh, and accordingly when, after unimportant visits to 
Grisedale and Dent, he arrived here, he went to a meeting 
at Justice Benson's, "where met a people that were separated 
from the public worship. This was the place that I had 
seen" — Brigflatts, by the Rawthey — "where a people came 
forth in white raiment. A large meeting it was, and the 
people were generally convinced, and continue a large meeting 
still of Friends near Sedbergh ; which was then first gathered 
through my ministry." "In the same week," he proceeds, 
" there was a great fair, at which servants used to be hired ; 
and I went and declared the day of the Lord through the 
fair. After I had done so, I went into the steeple-house 
yard, and many of the people of the fair came thither to me, 
and abundance of priests and professors. There I declared 
the everlasting truth of the Lord and the word of life, for 

several hours After a while, the priests came 

up to me, and I warned them to repent. One of them said 
I was mad, and so they turned away. But many people 
were convinced there that day, and were glad to hear the 
truth declared." 

From Sedbergh, Fox went to Firbank, three miles away, 
and there the proceedings were more remarkable still. On 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 



69 



Firbank Knott, a high hill on the Westmorland side of the 
Lune, overlooking the parish of Sedbergh, Fox had a notable 
field-day, much to be remembered in the annals of Quakerism. 
" The next first-day," he \vrites, " I came to Firbank Chapel, 
in Westmorland, where Francis Howgill and John Audland 
had been preaching in the morning." These were Indepen- 
dents, it would seem. "They were not parish teachers, but 
pretty tender men;" and they were shortly to become zealous 
preachers among the Friends. They were holding a service — 
for the Chapel seems to have been open to the ministrations 
of every one — when they became aware of the arrival of Fox. 




They at once cut short the exercise, went off to dinner, and 
hastened back. In the interval, Fox •* went to a brook and 
got a little water; and then came and sat down on the top 
of a rock, hard by the chapel." " Fox's Pulpit " the rock is 
now called, and it was, no doubt, an excellent rostrum from 
which to address the magnificent congregation which had 
assembled on the level standing-ground below. "It was 



Digitized by 



Google 



70 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

judged, there were above a thousand people;" and when 
some of the old folks had made themselves comfortable in 
the little chapel, and were looking out at the windows, 
"thinking it a strange thing to see a man preach on a hill 
or mountain, and not in their church, as they called it," 
George "was moved to open to the people, that the steeple- 
house, and the ground whereon it stood, were no more holy 
than that mountain;" and that churches, priests, and tithes, 
had their place, no doubt, among the ancient Jews, but were 
now for ever done away. The result of the discourse was 
eminently satisfactory, and several of those who listened to 
it joined the Society, and were foremost among its preachers 
afterwards. 

The scene of this remarkable episode has acquired, in 
consequence, unusual interest, especially for members of 
Fox's own persuasion. William Howitt, attracted to these 
dales chiefly by their association with the founder of the 
Society to which he belonged, paid a visit to it shortly before 
1837, 3,nd has thus described it in his "Rural Life of 
England":— 

** There is a little church-of- England chapel perched on the highest point 
«*of Kendal Fells, not far from Sedbergh, called Firbank Chapel, where a 
''thousand people are said to have been collected to hear him [Fox], and 
**at which three hundred people were convinced of the truth, to use his 
**own words, at one time. That little chapel is standing yet, perhaps the 
'*very humblest fabric in England belonging to the Established Church, 
"old and dilapidated, and situated in one of the most singular and wild 
** situations. Near the door is a rock, on which, it is said, he stood to 
** preach. From its high site you look over dreary moors, and a vast tract 
*«of outstretched country, and wonder whence the people gathered to his 
"ministry. But his fame was that of an apostle all round this country.*' 

This description is no longer exact in every detail. It 
resembles the play of Hamlety with the part of Hamlet 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 71 

omitted; for the little chapel, which Howitt contemplated 
with so much interest, yielded to the force of a wintry gale 
and became a ruin, a few years after his visit; and the 
congregation, who had been in the habit of carrying their 
wisps of straw to protect their feet from the damp floor, 
moved down to a lower and more sheltered site, as soon as 
the present church was ready to accommodate them. The 
ruins of the fallen chapel have been cleared away, but the 
tiny burial-ground, by the side of an old road, now seldom 
used, and under the shadow of the famous rock, remains. 
Two tombstones, legible, or partly legible — the earlier dated 
1745, the later, 1816 — gently break the silence of the grave; 
a few stunted firs bow their wind-swept heads over "the 
nameless dead;" and the whole is a spot favourable in the 
highest degree to sober reflection and chastened reverie. 

We descend the hill, and on our way back to Sedbergh 
look in at the old Meeting-house at Brigflatts, which sprang 
up under the stimulus of Fox's presence. In 1674, twenty- 
two years after his first visit, he addressed a meeting here, 
"to which came most of the Friends from the several 
meetings round about, and a great concourse of other people 
also; it was thought there were five or six hundred. A very 
good meeting it was." It must have been; — and the next 
year saw the now venerable meeting-house erected, as the 
date over the entrance shows. The simple whitewashed 
building is said to be the second oldest meeting-house of its 
kind in England. It consisted at first of four bare walls 
and an unceiled roof, wind and rain and snowflakes being 
partially excluded, as winter approached, by annual insertions 
of moss. Still the number of regular attendants increased, 
and in 17 11 an oak gallery was put up for extra accommo- 
dation. The gallery survives now, rather as a reminder of 



Digitized by 



Google 



72 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



the past, than as an object of present utility; for — such are 
the changes of time and fashion — the handful of worshippers 
who now meet there rarely overflows the downstairs floor. A 
library of appropriate literature is stored within, and a record 
of Meetings for Discipline and other business appertaining 
to the denomination, has been kept with unfailing regularity; 
while close by, a well-filled burial-ground covers the mortal 
remains of numbers who held their own manfully in the 
great struggle for liberty of conscience, two centuries ago. 




Old Friends* Meeting-house, Brigflatts. 

We proceed to Sedbergh, where it will be thought high 
time to change the subject which has occupied us so long. 
There is another incident, however, which took place about a 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY, 73 

year after Fox's inaugural visit to the town, which is inte- 
resting on diflFerent grounds. It is described in an old book, 
entitled "The faithful Testimony of that antient Servant of 
the Lord and minister of the everlasting Gospel, William 
Dewsbury/' one of the earliest of Fox*s followers, who had 
been convinced in the neighbourhood of Wakefield, and now 
seems to have been following in the track of his teacher. 
The particular memorandum is signed with the initials of 
George Whitehead, the famous Quaker missionary, of Orton. 

"One remarkable passage/* he writes, "I often reiTiembcr. About the 
'*year 1653, upoti a market-day, at Sedbuiy [Sedbergh], in Yorkshire, as 
" W, Dp was publishing the Truth at the Market Cross, some nide persons 
" (endeavouring with violence to push him down, and setting their Backs 
"against him, they pusbt down the Cross, which, with the fall, broke in 
"pieces, many being about it; yet it missed the People, and little or no 
'^hurt was done thereby; whereas, if it had fallen upon them, divers might 
"have been killed. This preservation, I and divers more observed then as 
' ' a special Providence of God attending him in his Labour, though I 
'* was then but a youth of sixteen years old, or thereaboutSj being convinced 
"of truth about a year before/' 

The Cross was set up again after this mischance, and con- 
tinued to shed an air of quaint old-worldliness over the 
market-place till 1854, when it was removed by some local 
wiseacres, who foolishly preferred its room to its company, 
and deprived the town of what many would now have regarded 
as one of its greatest ornaments. The sheds, or *' shades/* so 
called — ^a series of sheltered stalls bordering the churchyard — 
were pulled down at the same time. They had become the 
questionable haunt of nocturnal prowlersj and we need not 
much deplore their disappearance. Portions of the Cross 
underwent an ignoble resurrection as gate-posts to a farm- 
yard ten miles away. Old people, who have a kindly recollec- 
tion of it, say that it consisted of a plain central column^ 
1 



Digitized by 



Google 



74 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



rising from surrounding steps, and bearing a large round ball 
atop. Weary wayfarers often found grateful rest on its steps; 
and sales were announced, and matters of parochial interest 
published there, as the congregation filed out of church on 
Sundays. I am glad to be able to reproduce its portrait, 
from a sketch by the late Mr. Dawson Watson, to whose 
pencil many local objects of interest have owed a similar 
preservation. 







From the day when the roistering blades of Sedbergh 
upset the market-cross, and were within an ace of killing 
poor William Dewsbury and themselves at the same time, we 
seem to have dwelt securely, pursuing the noiseless tenor of 
our way for close upon a century. Then the Jacobites became 



Digitized by 



Google 



CONNECTION WITH GENERAL HISTORY. 75 

uneasy, and, not having had enough of the Stuarts, wanted 
more. Scotchmen, in particular, were eager to supplant 
Hanoverian George with a Prince of the genuine breed; and 
two thousand men, of all sorts and conditions, pushed down 
into England in 17 15. They kept clear of Sedbergh, however, 
and went by Kendal and Kirkby Lonsdale, until they fell into 
the arms of the King's forces at Preston^ and then quietly 
surrendered at, and with, discretion. But on a repetition of 
the offence, in 1745 — a much more formidable affair than the 
previous one — when " Charlie, my darling, the young Cheva- 
lier," at the head of his devoted Highlanders, dashed down 
to Derby, and thence speedily retraced his steps to Scotland^ 
with the Duke of Cumberland hard at his heels, we do seem 
to catch glimpses of white cockades and bespattered tartans 
and eke pursuing redcoats — meet cause of wonderment and 
alarm to peaceful villagers. For tradition is strong, that 
straggling Highlanders, not altogether at leisure to choose 
their route, struck off through Sedbergh northwards, followed 
by a party of the Duke's dragoons yearning for a more inti- 
mate acquaintance. One old inhabitant of Sedbergh avers 
that his ancestor — a Scotchman — cut himself adrift from the 
rebels at Thursgill, lurked about till the coast was clear, 
then built himself a hut, and left descendants who are with 
us now. Another tradition is, that some of the fugitives 
stayed the night at an inn in Sedbergh, but in the morning, 
receiving news of the near approach of their pursuers, they 
beat such a hasty retreat that a bundle of money, which they 
had secreted in the thatch, was left behind, and sufficed to 
rebuild the humble hostelry on a more imposing scale. And 
had we not formerly a Duke of Cumberland Inn, familiarly 
yclept "The Duke's Head," suggestive of special interest in 
the hero of Culloden ? Then there are three small cannons — two 



Digitized by 



Google 



76 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

in the Back Lane and one in the Main Street — of which the 
only rational account which anyone ventures to give, is that 
they may have been confided to our care by the rebels as 
•' left luggage/' not since claimed. 

We have now reached the close of a long chapter, from 
which it will be seen that we ask to be considered at least 
something more than supernumeraries in the evolution of the 
national fortunes. In the course of our review, we have 
revived an almost forgotten connection with the earliest 
inhabitants of the country. We have seen Roman troops 
penetrating our neighbourhood and leaving us encampments 
and roads to attest their presence. We have noted a Saxon 
thane setting up his rest in his hill-fortress in close proximity 
to degenerate Britons; and we have found traces of Danes 
and Norwegians in local nomenclature, as we shall meet with 
them in household words still current among the people. 
We have paused at the Conquest to observe William, the 
Norman, pushing his difl&cult way through Yorkshire, and 
stopping short in his career at Sedbergh. We have beheld 
the land in the firm grasp of powerful barons, and have 
glanced at the rise of Church and School. We have marked, 
with admiration, the people of Sedbergh and Dent, uniting 
to oppose the high-handed measures of a sacrilegious and 
unscrupulous tyrant, and in defence of their religion and 
liberties. Again, we have seen Sedberghians loyally supporting 
the throne in one of the greatest internal conflicts through 
which the nation has passed ; and then, turning from war to 
peace, and from peace to war, we have shared the enthusiasm 
of a new-bom sect, and have witnessed the last flicker of 
an expiring cause. 

Our survey has necessarily been rather discursive, but it 
has cleared the ground, and we may reasonably expect the 
ensuing chapters to be more parochial and precise. 



Digitized by 



Google 




CHAPTER II. 
THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAK SCHOOL. 

''E have already seen that the present county 
of York, at the period of the Conquest, 
included portions of Westmorland and 
Lancashire. Until quite recently, ecclesi- 
astical divisions, as, for instance, the dean- 
eries of Kendal and Kirkby Lonsdale, paid 
'Pur/^' ' ^^ regard to the boundaries of these new- 

fangled counties. Kendal and Kirkby 
Lonsdale were themselves in Westmorland, while some of 
their appurtenant parishes were in Lancashire; and, as regards 
Kirkby Lonsdale, some others were at home in Yorkshire. 
This is proof presumptive that, in this part of the country, 
ecclesiastical arrangements preceded the civil; and that while 
Lancashire and Westmorland were yet unborn j the old Saxon 
parishes of Kendal and Kirkby Lonsdale, which were then 
part of the West Riding of Yorkshire, had taken charge, the 
former of the east side of Morecambe Bay, and the latter 
of the valley of the Lune. 

There is no mention in Domesday Book of a church at 
Sedbergh, but Kirkby Lonsdale appears there, under the form 
of Cherchebi — a designation which plainly implies the exist- 
ence of a church at that time at that place, and which, with 
the specific addition of Lonsdale, points to the extensive area 
originally under its supervision. At the time the Domesday 
Surv^ey was made, we were in all likelihood included in this 



Digitized by 



Google 



78 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

great parish, and had not yet attained to the dignity of a 
separate existence. But in the reign of Henry I. (1100-1135) 
in the early part of the twelfth century, church-building went 
on at a merry pace; and it is highly probable, as we have 
previously noted, that the origin of Sedbergh Church is to be 
referred to this movement, and to the helping hand of the 
g^eat baron, Roger de Mowbray, of Burton-in-Lonsdale, among 
other places, to whom the tract of country conterminous with 
the wapentake of Ewecross had either been granted at first 
hand, or had be^n transferred in succession. Thus, within 
half-a-century of the great Survey, the spiritual provision, 
which had long been established at Kirkby Lonsdale, was 
reproduced at Sedbergh. A church was built, a parish with a 
separate cure of souls was marked out, and the beneficent 
influences which had crept up the banks of the Lune, to 
Sedbergh, would in like manner, and after no very long 
interval, be extended to Garsdale and Dent. 

During this time, and for some centuries afterwards, we 
were in the archdiocese of York, and in the old archdeaconry 
of Richmond. The Archdeacon of Richmond, in those days, 
was a dignitary of almost unlimited power in the vast territory 
which owned his sway. From Richmond to the confines of 
the Bishopric of Durham, and, in a westerly direction, to the 
Irish Sea, his jurisdiction was paramount; and, barring the 
distinctively episcopal fiinctions of confirmation, ordination, and 
consecration, there were few things in matters ecclesiastical 
which he could not do ; while on the other hand, there were 
not many things which could be done without his leave. If 
a princely duke desired to establish a collegiate church, as 
at Middleham, the Archdeacon must be formally solicited to 
exempt it firom his ecclesiastical rule; or if the advowson of 
Sedbergh was to be conferred on the abbey of Coverham, 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 79 

the arrangement must have his entire concurrence. He had 
a chief residence in York, and country houses in the three 
benefices assigned for his support. One of these was at 
Clapham, where the memory of it is still preserved in " Arch- 
deacon's Croft," near the church. Frequent visits to Rome, 
to confer with the Pope, made it necessary at times to provide 
a substitute, on which occasions a commissary was appointed 
to look after the synodals and Peter's pence at home. Matters 
remained in this state until the Reformation, when Henry 
VIII., in 1 54 1, founded the see of Chester and endowed it 
with the revenues of our friend the Archdeacon, whose 
title was still kept up, though the emoluments were gone. 
Thus we came to be in the diocese of Chester for nearly 
three hundred years, until 1836, when the see of Ripon was 
reconstituted, and the oversight of the present archdeaconry 
transferred to it. The Archdeacon of Richmond, at this date, 
is the Venerable Edwards Cust — a hale octogenarian, venerable 
in more senses than one, and specially esteemed at Sedbergh, 
where he was bom at the vicarage; his father, a senior 
wrangler, the Rev. Daniel Mitford Peacock (afterwards Cust), 
being Vicar of Sedbergh for upwards of forty years. Since 
1836, we have not experienced any ftirther diocesan trans- 
migration, although we have several times had occasion to 
welcome among us a still newer development, the genial 
Suffragan Bishop of Richmond. 

A church which has borne the rain and sunshine of more 
than seven hundred years, may fairly be expected to exhibit 
a roll of Vicars of proportionate dimensions. A few of them, 
at the beginning and end of the pre-Reformation period, have 
fallen irretrievably into "the dark backward and abysm of 
time;" but the series is unbroken afterwards, and I am able 
to present a list a little more complete than hitherto. It falls 



Digitized by 



Google 



8o SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

naturally into two divisions — the Vicars appointed by the 
Abbot and Convent of Coverham, before the Reformation ; 
and the subsequent appointments by the Master and Fellows 
of Trinity College, Cambridge, to whom Henry VIII., after 
dispossessing the monks, considerately transferred the larger 
tithes and the patronage of the living. In the latter division, 
the Vicars have been appointed uninterruptedly by the College, 
except in two early instances, when Adam Colclough and 
Edward Hampton seem to have been presented by the Crown. 
The pre-Reformation Vicars, it will be observed, are distin- 
guished by the names of the places to which they originally 
belonged ; and these designations, when reduced to the modern 
spelling of Poppleton, Bowland, Redmire, Linton, Wensley, 
Leathley (rj, and Middleham, give us an idea of the localities 
from which Coverham drew its recruits. Their personal names, 
too, are of scriptural or ecclesiastical complexion, with the 
exception of Richard of Middleham, who may perhaps be 
excused the deviation in consideration of the partiality 
which Richard Duke of Gloucester, afterwards Richard III., 
showed to that place, who, whatever opinion we may entertain 
of his character subsequently, was a good friend to Middle- 
ham, and the church there. 

The following is a list of the Vicars, so far as they have 
been ascertained. The dates denote the year of institution ; 
c. for circa intimates that the time is merely approximate, and 
m, informs the reader that the names to which it is prefixed, 
are those of Vicars who have monuments in the church, or 
churchyard. 

I. — Vicars before the Reformation : — 



^« ^350- John de Popilton 
c. 1379. Elyas de Boghland. 

1399. Cuthbert de Rydmer. 
c. 1 4 16. John de Lynton. 



1434. John Wenslawe. 
c, 1494. T. Leytley. 
c, 1528. Richard Mydlam. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND IHE GRAMMAR SCHOOL* g| 

IL — Vicars since the Reformation : — 



J554, Thomas AlkinsOD. 
1579. Giles Wig^inton. 
1585, Adam CoJclough, 
c. 1597. Edward Hampton. 
i6io. George Harrison. 
161 J. Joseph Wybarne. 
1615- Benjamin Hinton. 
1624. Robert Cademan, 
1634, Thomas Briscoe. 
1660- Leonard Burton. 
m, 1682. Jonathan Rose, M.A* 



1727- Thomas Lambert, M.A. 

174T. Joseph Driffield, B.A. 
m, 1746* Wynne Bateman, D.D. 

1754. John Meiyett, 

1764. Marwood Place, B.D. 
m. 1766, William Gawthrop, M,A. 

1840, Thomas Riddell, M.A. 
ffi, 1S4J. George Piatt, M.A. 

1S83. Robert Hebert Quick, M*A. 
m. 18S7. Joseph Albert Loblcy. M,A. 

i88g. Edward Wilton South, M.A. 



The following brief notices will, at leasts give an air of 
restored animation to some of these persons. 

Richard Mydlam was Vicar of Sedbergh in 1528, in which 
year he was a consenting party to the grant to Roger Lupton 
of a portion of glebe-land, including the site of his school. 

Of Thomas Atkinson I know nothing. He seems to have 
glided through the reign of Mary, and well into that of 
Elizabeth, without disturbance ; and we may conclude that 
though favourably inclined to the old religion, he did not 
push his views to an extreme in any direction. Giles Wigin- 
ton (or Wiggington) was a person of a different kind. The 
Protestants who had fled from the fires of Marian England 
to the cooler regions of the continent, returned in great 
force as soon as they heard the grateful news of the death 
of Mary, and the accession of Elizabeth. The great expect- 
ations which they had built on the latter event, and their 
intensified opposition to episcopacy and church discipline, 
induced them to set about sowing the seeds of puritanism 
and nonconformity in good earnest. Giles Wiginton was 
thoroughly in sympathy with these ultra- reformers. Unfortu- 
nately, they had reckoned without their host ; and Elizabeth 
soon let it be seen that she had a will of her own, especially in 
I?: 



Digitized by 



Google 



82 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

matters of church polity, and that she was by no means favour- 
ably inclined towards the development of any irregularities. 
The brand-new machinery of the Court of High Commission 
was set in motion to regulate "prophesyings" and the erratic 
zeal of unauthorised religionists. About 1585, Giles Wiginton 
had unpleasant experience of the power of this repressive 
engine. He was reported to his diocesan, the Bishop of 
Chester, for unconformable practices, and underwent the process 
of deprivation in consequence, Adam Colclough (a man no 
better than he should be, say his adversaries) being substituted 
in his place. After a time, however, by the intervention of 
powerful friends, he was reinstated; but the engine was still 
in motion, and another sweep of its remorseless arm deposited . 
him securely in Lancaster Castle. He had fallen under the 
suspicion — deserved or not— of having a hand in the notorious 
** Mar-Prelate" tracts; and the discreditable scurrility of these 
anonymous pamphlets barred prison doors effectually. After 
several years of close confinement and suffering he was 
banished from the land, and one hundred and forty of those 
who had heard him gladly were excommunicated for their 
pains.* 

Joseph Wybame, as we learn from the Register of Baptisms 
under the year 16 14, had a daughter baptized by the unusual 
but not unique name of "Nazareth." Possibly he too may 
have been a gentleman with puritanical tendencies. Benjamin 
Hinton and Robert Cademan also appear, on the same 
authority, to have assumed parental responsibilities at 
Sedbergh. 

In 1652, Fox notes in his "Journal," after the rousing 
epistle to "priest Tatham," — "I wrote also to Burton, priest of 

*Miairs " Congregationalism in Yorkshire," page 19. Fuller, in his Church History, 
also alludes to him. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 83 

Sedbergh, much to the same purpose, he being in the same 
evil ground, nature, and practice." Probably, we should not 
consider Leonard Burton's offences so heinous as they appeared 
to his Quaker critic. They seem to resolve themselves into the 
collection of his tilhes and the holding of views of theology 
different from those of George Fox, As Leonard Burton was 
not instituted until i66ojWe must suppose that at the date of 
Fox's letter he was acting either as curate or deputy of 
Thomas Briscoe, the preceding Vican 

We now come to a Vicar, Jonathan Rose, who seems to 
have had more originality and force of character than most 
of his reverend brethren. He was of the opinion of Captain 
Cuttle — ** When found, make a note of;'* and we are grateful 
for his memoranda at the end of one of the register books, 
setting forth with due particularity of names and dates, how 
that :— 

** November y* 5 th, Ad no Dommi 1697, — The same day was given a 
"red pulpit c Cushion by D^ Charles Ottway» of Ingmer-Hall, properly to 
"ye use of Sedbergh Church for ever." 

**ffeb. i3th^ 1700.— Then was given a Booke called y* History of y 
*' Bible, by M"" Edward Sp eight , to y* use of Sedbergh Church for ever.*' 

** March y* 12th, 17 00. — Then was given a large Table Cloaih for y" 
"Communion Table, coloured white, by D"" Charles Otwayj to y» use of 
" Sedbergh Church for ever; with two Napkins of the same sort afterwards," 

"March y* 26th, 1702,— Then was rec^ Thirty pounds, being y* gift of 
** M^ Edw^ Speight J of London, horn att Scroghouse, in Sedberghj given to 
" )-* poor of Sedbergh, & lo be divided by y* Vicar and Churchwardens every 
'* Lords Day in peny wheat Loaves/' 

** That in y^ year 1703^ John ffawcett, of Gateside, in ffrostrow, dec** 
"did by his last will give to y* poor of Soolbank and ffrostrow Tenn shillings 
' * yearly for ever, ^ y* same to be divided by y* Church- Wardeii & 
•' Overseer in pen'y Wheat Loaves to y" poor w*^ia y* s* Hamlett, upon 
" St» John's Day in Xtmasj & yc same to be continued yearly for ever 
"as abovcs"'" 



Digitized by 



Google 



^4 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

**That in y* year 1704, D' Otway gave to Sedbergh Church one Silver 
"" Salver, & y* same to continue to y« use afores^ for ever.** 

** That Charles Atkinson, of Borrad. gave a Velvett Bier-cloth, markt 
'*thus — 'C: A: 1716* — to the use of Sedbergh for ever.** 

" Our present vicar, Mr. Rose, aged 71 years, been vicar here 43 years, 
■"did on May 12 last, put into the Ratha [Rawthey] at the waters meeting 
** below Streight Bridge, one hundred live crevisses [crayfish], and this day 
**a parcel more above Milthorp Bridge, for a fund to breed of. Witnesse 
** my hand, Aug. 4, 1725, Jonathan Rose, vicar, Sedbergh." 

The Dr. Otway mentioned in these memoranda, was Charles 
Otway, LL.D., son of Sir John Otway, and Fellow of St. John's 
College, Cambridge, where he died. — The bread charities, after 
being dispensed in the manner prescribed, for nearly two 
hundred years, have come to an end while I write, the Charity 
Commissioners having just promulgated a scheme for their 
administration which diverts them into channels more agreeable 
to the circumstances of the times, and as one would hope, 
not less serviceable in their application. The Sunday Charity, 
before the restoration of the Church, was commemorated by a 
few words in black letter on the inside of the west wall, near 
where the old persons selected for the purpose have been 
accustomed to partake of Edward Speight's bounty. The 
St. John's Day Charity, it will be noticed, is directed to be 
distributed by the * churchwarden,' not * churchwardens,' as 
before, the reason being that it is the custom at Sedbergh to 
appoint one churchwarden for each of the hamlets composing 
the township. The hamlets of Cautley-and-Dowbiggin and 
Howgill-and-Bland, which now resort to churches of their 
own, have only within the last few years preferred to manage 
this matter for themselves. Naturally, John Fawcett thought 
the churchwarden of his own hamlet the fittest dispenser of a 
benevolence intended for it alone ; and the overseer would be 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 85 

a guarantee that the most needful were not overlooked. There 
is a melancholy interest attached to doomed institutions, and 
I shall be excused for stating that on the last — positively the 
last — distribution of this charity (December 27th, 1890), sixty- 
four children (no adults have attended within my recollection) 
retired with an average of three loaves apiece. Visible signs 
of John Fawcett are now scarce. The habitable part of Gate- 
side, in Frostrow, the humble tenement of the rural philan- 
thropist, after standing empty for some years, was finally carted 
away in 1889, to serve as building material elsewhere. 

The last memorandum above, shows that Mr. Jonathan 
Rose, amid his pastoral duties, was not unmindful of the bodily 
requirements of his flock. Whether the humble but interest- 
ing crustaceans, which the worthy Vicar fondly hoped would be 
a comfort to his parishioners in after-days, found their environ- 
ment unsuitablej or whether they had the Ul-hap to be eaten 
up before they had time to think of matrimonial alliances, or 
whether, perchance^ aa is not improbable, they were prema- 
turely extracted from their hiding-places by inquisitive urchins* 
is uncertain, but no vestiges of their ill-fated sojourn in the 
Raw they are apparent now. 

But besides being a man of good senses in the practical 
routine of life, Mr. Rose seems to have been acceptable in 
the pulpit, and in some request in other churche,s. A thin 
quarto pamphlet, printed in 1755, by Thomas Gent, of York, 
may occasionally be met with in Sedbergh. It contains two 
sermons by this Vicar, intended to have been preached at 
Penrith, on June aist, 1724, when, as the author informs us in 
a preliminary epistle, he "had the favour of coming up in 
the large, beautiful, new-built church" there* He found a 
number of clergymen present on the occasion, and, though 
prepared for a two-fold exercise of his ministry, he modestly 



Digitized by 



Google 



86 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

gave way to one of them in the afternoon, or evening, and 
committed his discourses to the press, that the good people 
of Penrith might peruse, at leisure, what they had not had 
the designed opportunity of hearing in full. His sermons, 
judging from these specimens, were not such as would rivet 
the attention of a congregation at this stage of the nineteenth 
century, but they were solid and orthodox, and edifying, in all 
probability, at the time they were delivered. 

A plain slab in the church, with a Latin inscription, 
recorded the burial of his wife. Jennet, in 17 15, and of him- 
self in 1727, aged 73. The Virgilian hemistich, "Dabit Deus 
his quoque finem " (God will put an end to this also), applied 
in a new sense, was added at the end, and received a curious 
comment during the recent restoration, when a falling beam 
lighted on the stone, and broke it into numerous fragments. 
The inscription was fortunately copied at the time, by the 
clerk of the works, and may now be read on a handsome 
brass plate, provided at the expense of the Rev. R. H. Quick, 
and placed as nearly as possible in the former position. 

Joseph Driffield was the only black sheep in the list, that 
I know of. He was deprived of the living, after he had held 
it for five years, but what was the exact nature of his oflfence 
I have nowhere seen stated. As he let the vicarage during 
his residence at Sedbergh, he may have been an ill-cared-for 
bachelor, who would have been all the better for the domestic 
charities of his own fireside. 

Wynne Bateman, D.D., was Master withal of the Grammar 
School during and after his vicariate, and we shall meet with 
him again in that capacity. According to a monument in the 
church, he married Rachel, the younger daughter of Samuel 
Saunders, D.D., and died May 12th, 1782, aged 68. The church 
registers show that he wrote a fine bold hand, which his pupils 
could not have done better than imitate. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL, By 

Marwood Place^ B.D,, was aften\^ards Vicar of Kirkby 
Lonsdale, where he rebuilt the \^carage, and was buried in 
1791, aged 70. 

William Gawthrop, his monument informs us, was formerly 
Fellow of Trinity College, He died January 2nd, 1798, in the 
64th year of his age, " sincerely lamented by his family, his 
friendsj and his parishioners." 

Daniel Mitford Peacock, senior wrangler in 1791, and sub- 
sequently Fellow of Trinity College, has been mentioned above, 
and comes within the recollection of some of the older in- 
habitants now living. A flag on the church floor preserves 
the memory of an infant daughter, *' Julia Peacock, who was 
born on the 14th, and died on the 26th day of April, 18 11/* 

Thomas Riddell, whose brief tenure of the living is sand- 
wiched between two long vicariates of more than forty years 
each, removed to Masham, the living of which is in the same 
patronage as that of Sedbergh. Daring his fourteen years' 
residence there he won golden opinions, and the Riddell 
Memorial Mechanics' Institute is a permanent testimony of the 
esteem with which he was regarded- He died suddenly on 
September 30th, 1855^ and, to quota the History of Masham, 
by J. Fisher, " never did man die more regretted and beloved." 

The Rev. George Piatt — I use the reverential prefix because 
1 now come within the period of personal recollection — ^was 
a model of all that a clergyman should be. A gentleman of 
high scholarly attainments, he relinquished the pursuit of 
secular studies when he became a parish priest, and devoted 
himself heartily to the duties of his ofEce. His indefatigable 
activity, unfailing courtesy, and unostentatious acts of kindness 
and charity, will not readily be forgotten. In the scarcity of 
suitable persons, he consented to act as a magistrate; and, as 
chairman of the Sedbergh bench for many years, he dis- 



Digitized by 



Google 



88 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

played the same painstaJcing desire "to execute justice and 
to maintain truth" in that, as in all other engagements 
of his life. He was highly esteemed by the late Bishop 
Bickersteth, and was made an Honorary Canon of Ripon, in 
1876. During his incumbency the new parish of Cautley-with- 
Dowbiggin was formed, and its church and parsonage built. 
His long tenure of office had caused him to be regarded as 
an inalienable part of the parish. He succumbed, however, 
to a short illness, at the ripe age of 76, dying, as I have 
heard him express a desire to die, " in harness." The crowd 
of mourners, of all ranks, who attended his funeral on the 
bitterly cold day in March (March 6th, 1883), on which he 
was laid to rest near the church where he had ministered so 
long and faithfully, bore witness to the sense of personal loss 
which was felt by all who knew him. To an older generation 
of Sedberghians, the familiar conjunction of the names of 
Piatt and Evans is suggestive of the amity which prevailed 
between them in their separate, if we ought not rather to say, 
their combined departments. A brass tablet in the church 
shows that special respect for the memory of Canon Piatt led 
friends and parishioners to contribute the simi of ;£i,094 towards 
the restoration of the fabric. 

The Rev. R. H. Quick arrived at a time when parochial 
administration had been stereotyped by the prescriptive usage 
of forty years ; and it was difficult for old residents to become 
reconciled at once to changes which commended themselves 
to an ardent reformer. The result was a little imsettlement 
and a little friction which would, doubtless, have died a 
natural death as the good qualities and intentions of the 
new vicar had become better understood. After about four 
years, however, he elected to resume his work as a writer on 
education, a subject on which he was a considerable authority. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 89 

and in which he had gained distinction of no ordinary kind. 
He accordingly resigned the living, and removed to the 
vicinity of London, where he could pursue his favourite studies 
with greater facilities than in the country. His "Essg.ys on 
Educational Reformers," in the judgment of competent critics 
evince careful research and wide knowledge; and he was 
particularly pleased with the attention which his book attracted 
in America. He had seen through the press a second edition, 
with the improvements suggested by the reflections of twenty 
years, and was on a visit to a literary friend at Cambridge, 
when he was unexpectedly struck down by paralysis in the 
6 1 St year of his age. He was interred in Sedbergh church- 
yard on the 14th of March in this year (1891), and his former 
parishioners gathered largely to the solemn leave-taking at 
the grave. I am concerned rather with his inclusion among 
the Vicars of Sedbergh than with his work as an education- 
alist elsewhere, but it is pleasant to refer to the reminiscences 
and testimonies of distinguished friends in the "Journal of 
Education" for April, 1891, and to "Education," of the same 
month and year, which contains an excellent likeness. 

One much-needed consummation coincided with his sojourn 
at Sedbergh — the restoration of the old church, which had 
become a prey to damp in the walls and defects in the roof. 
All this was changed in 1886, at a cost of ;^4,ooo. One lady 
in the parish generously contributed ;^6oo, and other inhabi- 
tants of all denominations gave according to their means, their 
efforts being cordially seconded by Old Sedberghians in all 
parts of the country. The work was carried out by local 
contractors, under the skilful direction of Messrs. Paley and 
Austin, of Lancaster, by whom no feature of interest was 
sacrificed, while some were discovered and carefully preserved. 
The result is a building creditable to the architect and the 

L 



Digitized by 



Google 



90 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

workmen, interesting to the antiquary, and comfortable and 
convenient for the congregation who have the satisfaction of 
worshipping in it. 

Mr. Quick's departure was followed by the arrival of the 
Rev. J. A. Lobley, formerly Fellow of Trinity College, after- 
wards Principal of the Theological College at Montreal, and 
finally Vicar of this parish for the too-short space of a year 
and a half. He was an eloquent preacher and a genuinely 
good and amiable man, who quickly endeared himself to his 
flock by his gentle manners, his ready sympathy, and his 
single-minded devotion to their interests. The Mission Room 
at Millthrop was built through his exertions, and he interested 
himself greatly in the Mission Chapel on the Ingmire estate. 
He zealously multiplied agencies beyond the strength of one 
man to conduct continually. He became conscious of im- 
paired health, and had made arrangements for taking a few 
weeks* rest; but on the very first Sunday of his intended 
absence (January 6th, 1889), after only a few days' serious ill- 
ness, he passed fi-om work to rest, at the early age of 48. 
The oak reredos was erected by parishioners as an appro- 
priate memorial of his ministry, and the cost of the pulpit 
also was defrayed principally from contributions given for 
the same object. 

We have now passed in review the Vicars for five centuries 
and a half, from John de Popilton, monk of Coverham, to the 
Rev. Edward Wilton South, the present worthy successor of 
good men and true. Let us approach and view the scene of 
their ministrations. 

The rubble-walled battlemented church, dedicated, like that 
of Dent, to the popular saint of North Britain, St. Andrew, 
and roughcast and whitewashed early in this century, "by 
order of his Lordship," is characterised by the severe simplicity 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 



91 



of strength and durability, and is by no means prodigal of 
structural adornment. Recognition of the patron saint is 
nowhere apparent, though the diminutive niche above the 
door of the north porch very probably once contained his 
statuette. When the reredos was erected lately, this striking 
lack of commemoration suggested the placing of the figure 
of St. Andrew in the post of honour, with his brother, St. Peter, 
on the other side of the Cross — St. James and St. John, the 
remaining members of the apostolic group, being unfratemally 
separated to admit of this arrangement; and now, last but 
not least, the beautiful five-light east window, presented 
by Mrs. Dormer, depicting the call of St. Andrew, supplies a 
long-felt omission, and crowns the restoration of the church. 



^:zin 







Besides the niche alluded to, there is another in the buttress, 
at the north-east comer, which, in spite of its weathered 



Digitized by 



Google -^ 



92 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

condition, shows signs of a skilful chisel. The canopied recess, 
destitute in like manner of its statue, is capped by a hippo- 
potamus-like creature grimly peering over into nothingness. In 
looking at these deserted shrines, one feels sure that the walls 
of the old church bear testimony to the reforming zeal which, in 
the reigns of Edward VI. and Elizabeth, rendered the idol- 
atrous or superstitious use of images impossible, by removing 
them altogether from the sight of the people. 

Here and there, except on the south side of the church, 
the fancy of the mediaeval sculptor has run riot in the gro- 
tesque heads which form the dripstone terminations above the 
windows. Notice, at the east end, a head emerging from the 
neck of a bishop, and at the west end, over the window which 
lights the north aisle, two curious female faces. From the 
mouth of one hangs a tongue of unusual proportions. Pro- 
bably no Sedbergh lady ever possessed so large a one; and 
it may be that an aggrieved sculptor outlined the unruly 
member when smarting from a domestic curtain-lecture of 
the severest type. In the other case, the tongue is either 
tucked in as far as possible, or else, as seems equally probable, 
reduced to a painful stump. What is the moral, or perhaps 
we ought to say, what is " the long and the short " of this 
business? It is, I imagfine, a sermon in stone, much needed 
among ancient Sedberghian gossips — the representation, in 
fact, of an incorrigible scandal-monger and her well-merited 
punishment. If this is not the true interpretation of the 
parable, I am sorry for it, for I think it ought to be ; but I 
leave the riddle to a shrewder guesser. 

• And here — after premising that the roof-marks against the 
wall on the other side of the tower, above the tool-house, are 
merely the relics of a small lean-to, which provided instruc- 
tion for the poor, before the National School was built — it 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 93 

may be well to observe that we are in the presence of some 
of the oldest work in the building. You see two flat Norman 
buttresses, one on either side of the tower. They seem to 
define the germ of the church, before it had acquired the 
accretions of a south aisle and a tower, marking the limits of 
the main structure, when it was in the embryo state of a nave 
and chancel, and one aisle to boot. The north aisle seems to 
be coeval with the nave, because the arch of the inner door- 
way of the north porch is Norman, and the wall on either 
side of it is more than three feet thick, and, therefore, likely 
to have been part of the original structure. As we enter by 
this doorway, the semicircular arches of this aisle, towards the 
west, are referable to the same era ; but when we have passed 
beyond this nucleus of the earliest work, the architectural 
evolution of the fabric becomes hopelessly perplexing and 
obscure. So many alterations have been made in the course 
of time, that specimens of all styles, fi-om the Norman down- 
wards, may be foimd ; and the result is like a " crazy quilt," 
of which the leading principles of the pattern, if, indeed, 
there be any, are difl&cult or impossible to divine. The clustered 
respond pier, at the western extremity of the south arcade, is 
Early English ; the west window of the south aisle represents 
the Decorated style; while the window heads and labels out- 
side, on the north and south, and the general aspect of the 
church, are characteristic of the Perpendicular. It has been 
suggested that the structure, in its later stages, is possibly 
not entirely of indigenous growth, but that importations from 
other buildings — ^here a capital, and there an arch — may have 
been incorporated as the need arose. This opinion derives 
some confirmation from a circumstance which, so far as I am 
aware, has not been particularly noticed, and which, indeed, 
could not have been noticed before the manifold coats of 



Digitized by 



Google 



94 . SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

whitewash, which encrusted pillar and arch alike, were stripped 
off. The occurrence among the ashlar work in various parts 
of the building, but chiefly towards the west, of red sandstone 
in contrast with the bulk of the masonry — which sandstone 
must have been quarried at a considerable distance from Sed- 
bergh — suggests such an incorporation on the occasion of some 
considerable, but now forgotten restoration. The tracery of the 
belfry window is of this stone, as is also the pointed belfry 
arch. Above this, in the wall, will be noticed two segments 
of an extremely rudimentary arch, which may be the dislocated 
remains of a window, or small west door, in existence before 
the tower was built. On one of the imposts of the belfry 
arch is roughly cut, in relief, the figure of a four-footed animal, 
possibly a lamb ; but a more interesting feature is the impost 
of the eastern pier of the chancel, in the north arcade, now, 
unfortunately, partly concealed by the new vestry screen. 
Here we find, in relief, the letters — X Y, with a fleur-de-lis 
between them. I hazard the conjecture that the stone is not 
in the place for which it was originally intended, but that at 
some period in its history it formed the pedestal of an image 
of the Virgin, or of the Virgin Mother and Child, and that 
the letters are the initials of x^i(frhs riSg, which, with the inter- 
vening emblem of the Virgin, may be interpreted as the 
ejaculation of a devout beholder, "Christ, son of Mary, hear!" 
The ground-plan of the church, if we leave out of con- 
sideration the priest's door into the chancel firom the south, 
and the north and south porches and the tower, may be 
roughly described as a parallelogram, 105 ft. by 52 ft. (inside 
measurement), divided, in the direction of the longer dimen- 
sion, into three sections — two aisles, and a centre consisting 
of a nave and chancel. As in many old churches in the 
wapentake, so here, no arch divides the chancel from the 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. g5 

nave. Probably both aisles terminated eastward in side- 
chapels, and one of them, the southern, became a chantry. 
On the south, the piscina, or drain for carrying away the 
rinsings of the chalice, and an image-bracket, are extant. The 
extremity of the north aisle has long been used as a vestry, 
and there is no piscina. It may, however, be hidden in the 
wall, as there is still a bracket. The vestry was formerly less 
than half the size of the present one, and walled off from the 
rest of the aisle. The doorway has now been built up, so as 
to answer the purpose of a credence for the sacred vessels. 
In the central division, before the east window, stood the high 
altar, at which the principal functions of the Roman ritual were 
performed. In the south-west angle, until recently, the paro- 
chial tribute to the memory of Braithwaite Otway, referred to 
before, towered aloft. It has followed the usual course of 
migration, and gone westwards. It will be found in the north- 
west corner of the south aisle, in a more obscure, but, on the 
whole, more appropriate place. It concealed the principal 
piscina, which the grateful Vandals of the period had mutilated 
to make room for their offering. To Braithwaite Otway we 
are indebted also for the dial over the south porch, where, all 
unheeded, it vainly strives to compete with the clock in the 
tower above. Stone altars went down in the days of Edward 
VI., were replaced by Queen Mary, and then finally abolished 
in the second year of Elizabeth, when each parish was required 
to provide " a decent table, standing on a frame, for the Com- 
munion Table." Traces of the foundations of the side-altar, 
in the south aisle, were discernible when the flags were taken 
up. The oak Table, with its frame — not of much antiquity, 
however — now stands in the vestry. 

Among the Richmond wills, published by the Surtees 
Society, there is a short one relating to a Sedbergh person. 



Digitized by 



Google 



96 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

It is dated 1558, in the last year of Queen Mary, and gives 
us a lively impression of the ritual here, after she had re- 
established the mass and undone the reforms of the boy- 
king. The revival of the old religion was probably warmly 
welcomed in the North, if indeed it had ever been thoroughly 
discarded here. Mabel Archer, the testator, a well-to-do par- 
ishioner, was a devout Roman Catholic, a^ is evident from 
her desire to have mass for the repose of her soul, and a 
solemn Dtrtge^ sung at her funeral. Her contributions to 
the linen of the high altar, and her bequests to the priests, 
who most likely ofl&ciated in the side-chapels, attest the same. 
She remembered the poor with a dole, as was usual then — 
" the poor of the church row *' she calls them, which I presume 
to understand as the poor people in the parish accustomed to 
be considered in this way — and there is a world of good 
feeling wrapped up in her quaint direction that they should 
be ** mended with bygge," or have such a complement of 
barley added to their scanty store as should make them think 
kindly of, and upon occasion, as in duty bound, pray for the 
welfare, of good Mistress Archer. But here is the will: — 

'* I Mabell Archer wydow [give my body] to be buryed in the paryshe 
** churche yard of Sanct Andrew the apostle in Sedber besydes my husband. 
"Also I will have messe and Deryge songe for my soule the day of my 
*'buryalle. And I geve and bequethe to the hyghe alter vs. and ij 
"kyrchefes. Also I bequethe to iij prests Sir Leonard Fawcet, Sir Ryehard 
** Fawcet, and Sir Ryehard Bland xs. Also I will y' Jhames Otwaye have 
*'fyve marks. Also I bequethe to every householder from my owne to 
*' Rowland Archers a pecke of bygge. Also I will that the poore of the 
"churche rawe be mended with bygge at the discretyon of Sir Leonard 
" Fawcet, Robert Fawcet, and my mother. And the resydewe of my bygge 
'* I will y* my mother and my servant George have yt. Also I will that my 
* ' uncle Robert wyfe have my best hate and cappe, and I wyll that my aunt 

• The beginning of a Latin funeral psalm, and the origin of the word "dirge." 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 97 

•' Roland Archers wyfe have my damaske sieves. Also I will that Richard 
"Atkynsons wife have a rayment of my symple rayment. And I wyll 
*'y* Jenet Atkynson be niendyd with some of my clothes." 

Several points of architectural interest were rendered per- 
ceptible in the course of the recent restoration. A portion 
of a splayed window of an early type is uncovered at the 
west end of the north aisle. It probably helped to light the 
original church, and was afterwards cut in two to make room 
for the larger window which usurped its place. The rectan- 
gfular recesses in the nave above the north arcade, indicate 
the position of the old clerestory windows before the long 
low building which contained them was heightened consider- 
ably, and the superadded wall thickened, to receive the larger 
openings which now light the nave. That similar recesses 
are not apparent on the south side, may possibly be due to 
the circumstance that the whole arcade, being found insecure, 
had to be taken down ; and an interesting reminiscence of the 
past may thus have been sacrificed in the process. 

In other respects the arcade was scrupulously re-erected as 
before. It does not match the opposite one, either in the 
number or the height of the arches, and is most likely of a 
later date. It was this absence of symmetry which prompted 
part of the single sentence which Dr. Whitaker bestows on 
the architecture of the church, as to which he affirms that 
"whether by negligence or whim in the original architect, it 
is marked by one deformity, peculiar, so far as I know, to 
itself; which is that there is one column [two columns he should 
have said] more on the north side than the south, so that at 
whatever point the spectator is placed, obliquity and dispro- 
portion present themselves." It would not have been strange 
if, instead of an additional column in the northern quota, 
there had been three; for any one standing near the pulpit 
M 



Digitized by 



Google 



98 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

will see, from the interrupted sweep of two adjoining arches, 
that either one column has been dispensed with on the occa- 
sion of some alteration, or that a large and obstructive rec- 
tangular pier, similar to the one near the south door, has been 
taken down. Obliquity extends still further, for the east 
window is not in the centre of the wall. But this feature is 
of too common occurrence in the ancient churches of this 
district to be certainly accidental; and the approximation to 
the north has been held to symbolize the inclination of the 
Saviour's head upon the Cross. 

Those who knew the church before its restoration will be 
conscious of a void at the west end, when they look for 
the gallery erected in 1760. Being of no particular interest, 
and blocking out the shapely arches of the belfry, it was 
asked to come down, and give place to the specimens of old 
seats which are arranged on the floor over which it stood. 
Its removal revealed a gruesome figure delineated on the 
plaster — the full-length representation of a skeleton, designed, 
it would seem, to impress the congregation with a salutary 
sense of the uncertainty of life. A more elegant, if less 
striking, reminder of the same fact was disclosed in the recent 
restoration of Ingleton Church, where the figure, holding aloft a 
scythe or an hour-glass — I am told it is a little uncertain which 
— has been left undisturbed, as being fairly within the endu- 
rance of modem taste. That both kinds of figure were some- 
times in evidence on the same wall, may be seen in the church 
of Kirkby Malham, where a skeleton on' one hand, and an 
angel on the other, combine to drive home their warnings. 

Pre-restoration fiHiends will also miss the snowy expanse 
of ceiling with its mysterious rows of strong staples, for sus- 
taining the aerial flight of the annual whitewasher. Above 
it, the rough oak timbers, which, no doubt, were put up in 1784, 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 99 

when extensive alterations and repairs were made in this 
quarter, and the old timbers and lead were disposed of in 
considerable quantities to meet the expenditure, were pro- 
nounced unpresentable, and have been replaced by a suitable 
and substantial roof of pitch-pine. 

The side aisles had rows of seats running lengthwise, rising 
by a gentle ascent towards the outer walls, and diversified, like 
the nave, with unsightly high-backed pews, conventionally 
appropriated to certain houses. From these a few specimens of 
carving have been retained in the vestry and elsewhere. The 
reduction of the seats to a uniform height, by lowering and 
levelling the floor, necessitated the removal of large quantities 
of human bones, which had crowded every part during the 
days of intramural sepulture. These were carefully collected 
and re-interred in the churchyard, near the tower, but no 
memorial marks the ground where they were deposited. 

The plan of the architect originally included a chancel 
screen, which had to be abandoned in consideration of the 
unforeseen expense involved in setting the shaky north arcade 
on its legs again. The general eflfect of the interior on the 
eye of a spectator is no doubt impaired by this regrettable 
omission, as will be admitted by anyone who considers how 
much Kirkby Lonsdale Church is indebted for its suggestion 
of seemly proportion to this particular feature. Moreover, 
the rood-screen at Sedbergh was once a notable object, and 
the woodwork about the chancel bore traces of its existence 
to the last. A fragment of the old screen, considered by 
competent authority to be of the 15th century, is preserved 
in the vestry; and the writer takes credit to himself for having 
rescued it from premature destruction amid a heap of uncon- 
sidered lumber in a neighbouring wood-shed. The rood, or 
large-sized figure of the Saviour on the Cross, facing the 



Digitized by 



Google 



lOO SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

congregation, used to be placed over the screen, on what was 
called the rood-loft. There was a Rood Guild at Sedbergh, 
endowed with a farm called Deepmire, near Arkholme, afterwards 
appropriated to the advantage of the Grammar School. It was 
probably a guild of a social and religious character, having 
nothing distinctively to do with trades or handicrafts. As 
such it would be a benefit-club, and the members would assist 
each other in times of need or sickness. They would look 
upon themselves as specially under the protection of the Holy 
Rood, and would wear a distinctive badge upon public occasions. 
The religious complexion of these guilds was heightened by 
their habit of making donations in aid of chantries, for the 
purchase of masses for the welfare of themselves, and the 
benefit of departed members. 

There was also, according to the report of the commissioners 
appointed to inquire into such matters, a light — a large taper, 
kept burning before the high altar — maintained with a sum of 
money left by one Henry Blomer.* The symbolism of these 
lights is happily explained by Wordsworth ; and what he says 
of conventual establishments was true also, in a less degree, 
of many parish churches: — 

" Even thus of old 
Our ancestors, within the still domain 
Of vast cathedral or conventual church 
Their vigils kept; where tapers day and night 
On the dim altar burned continually, 
In token that the House was evermore 
Watching to God.'' 

The bidding-prayer, which was in use before the sermon in 
pre-Reformation times, admonished the people, among other 



• This name has been read Blound, but as we shall presently see that Henry 
Blomer (or Blomeyr) left money for this very purpose, I have, little doubt that the 
word is Blomer. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. lOI 

duties, to pray for those who founded any light in the church, 
or gave any useful accessory for the services; and it is plain 
that there would be occasions when such a reminder would 
be felt to be appropriate in Sedbergh Church. 

The part of the chancel now occupied by the choir was, 
until the last few years, assigned to the masters and scholars 
of the Grammar School ; but the numbers outgrowing the space 
they deemed it expedient to migrate to a chapel of their own, 
for which purpose the old Grammar School was set apart; 
and the church choir thereupon were promoted to their present 
position. Previously they sat in the front seats of the 
nave, immediately before the pulpit; and two pegs long 
denoted the place where, in older days, the presiding genius 
used to lay up the bow of his violin when it was not actively 
employed in extracting sweet sounds. A barrel-organ reigned 
supreme in the musical department when I was a boy ; and I 
have a vivid recollection of one or two occasions, when it got 
the better of the grinder and persisted in prolonging the tune 
when, by all the rules of propriety, it ought to have been silent. 
In 1868, it was admitted on all hands that the capricious 
revolver was played out, and the present instrument was erected 
in its stead. The handsome steps of black marble which the 
late Canon Piatt caused to be laid down before the com- 
munion rails, craved wary walking, especially after the period- 
ical renovation with an oily compound had been performed; 
and I shall not easily forget the downfall of a humble member 
of society on the slippery surface, who, as soon as he had 
become prostrate, manifested a tendency to rotate on his axis. 
But the steps are gone — chopped into squares, and inter- 
mingled with glazed tiles of a fairer hue. The pulpit, once 
a three-decker, had been decapitated before my time. The 
reading-desk, with an offshoot for the clerk, stood on the 



Digitized by 



Google 



I02 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



south side of the nave, before the first pillar below the chancel 
steps — the pulpit proper, with its superincumbent sounding- 
board, occupying the site where its successor now is. The 
surplice was retained throughout the morning service, but the 
black-gown made its appearance in the pulpit at eventide. 




arisljCW '^Jl^V 



Many things now past and gone recur to the memory, and 
demand a chronicler. But we must not linger. A hasty 
glance at the fine octagonal font of black marble; another at 
the carved poor-box, dated 1633, and furnished with three 
locks, one for the vicar and two for the churchwardens, as the 
84th canon prescribes ; and again another glance at the church- 
wardens' stone, initialled and dated (1699), and probably meant 
to commemorate some important alterations in the church. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 103 

during the vicariate of the Rev. Jonathan Rose ; and then we 
will make our way, in imagination at least, to the bells. 

The ascent is difficult, and the reader must be content to 
be told that they are three in number, each with mediaeval 
black-letter inscriptions, undated, as is usual in pre-Reforma- 
tion bells, and that one of them is cracked. But even a 
cracked bell that has joined in the merry wedding-peal, or 
tolled the knell of a departing soul, for more than three hun- 
dred years, is entitled to respect. The inscriptions are these : — 

^ccc campana ^acva fiat ^vinitate trjeata* 
^celovwn ^tB plactat tibi vex »0nn» i^te* 
^0ncipien» ^ pia vivao KOilntn vcga* 

Which is as much as to say: — 

May this bell be blessed by the Holy Trinity. 
Christ, King of Heaven, may this sound please Thee. 
Pious Virgin, Mother of Christ, Queen of Heaven. 

The first two lines, in spite of false quantities, are evidently 
intended for hexameters, and even the third, if X be read at 
full length as Christum^ has the requisite number of feet; though 
no doubt a modern composition master would make much ado 
about the spondee in the fifth place. I suspect the line was 
correct originally, with pia in the fifth foot, but that a perverse 
workman, with a contempt for prosody, mixed the words afresh 
at the foundry. 

Three other matters invite our attention briefly, before we 
take leave of the building — the registers, the communion-plate, 
and the monuments. 

Our earliest registers, from their commencement to 1688, 
are on loose sheets of parchment of various sizes, bearing 
marks of having been stitched together at some time. They 
have suffered terribly from damp and decay, and I am afraid I 



Digitized by 



Google 



I04 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DEN1\ 

must add, from neglect. They are in process of transcription in 
the Parish Magazine, and will thus eventually be easily acces- 
sible to the public. There is an entry in the book of Weddings 
as early as 1594 (Old Style); the Burials begin in 1595, and 
the Baptisms cannot strictly be said to begin at all, for there 
are some leaves missing, and the record starts off abruptly 
with a daughter of John Crowther, in 1605. I apprehend the 
year 1597 should be regarded as the real commencement in 
all three cases ; for it was then that a patent under the great 
seal called upon every parish to provide itself with parchment 
registers, and to copy into them such entries as had previously 
been made in the paper books. Examination of the register 
of burials, to see whether the virulent epidemic which ravaged 
the north of England in 1597 has left any traces at Sedbergh, 
leads to the conclusion that we escaped with impunity. For 
though the number of recorded deaths rises from fourteen in 
^595y to twenty-nine in 1596, and thirty-nine in the fatal year, 
this phenomenon is probably due to imperfect registration 
previous to 1597. After this date the register is defective for 
some time, but in 1605 and onwards, the number of burials 
is frequently over forty. In 1623, the year when some un- 
recorded cause more than trebled the number of interments 
at Kendal, and largely increased it at Kirkby Lonsdale, the 
register is again defective, but the entries in the preceding 
year — forty-six, against an average of thirty-one for two years 
before — do seem to indicate that an unusual disturbance in the 
bills of mortality had begun to set in. The Weddings and 
Burials show some gaps during the Civil War, but rather, I 
imagine, from loss than default of entry. The books have 
been regularly kept through the Commonwealth, the only 
change noticeable being that infants are not stated to have 
been * baptized,' but only as 'born.' Kirkby Lonsdale is the 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 05 

mother-parish of Firbank, but the greater nearness of Sedbergh 
made our offices much in request; and baptisms relating to 
Firbank in the 17th century will usually be found here. We 
may presume that our forefathers obeyed the law, but we shall 
look in vain for any indication of "burials in woollen." On 
the whole, at Sedbergh, these records 

"Where to be born and die 
Of rich and poor makes all the history,** 

are eminently laconic and business-like, and are seldom illu- 
minated by the side-lights of contemporary annotation. 

Where the uniformity is so depressing, one is grateful for 
such morsels of orthographical eccentricity as "Expoffer" for 
Christopher, or " Crockaloyne " for Crook of Lune. A name- 
less "poor man" or "traveller** occasionally crosses our path. 
"Little Stephen Fawcett" and "Robert Wilson alias Robin 
of Conscience," are welcome variations ; and ladies with such 
pretty appellations as Agatha, Mabel, or Christabel, inspire us 
with love at first sight. We rejoice greatly when some stately 
Augfustine, or Theophilus, or Hannibal, rubs shoulders with 
the meaner herd of " milners," " websters," and " cordyners ; " 
but our mirth is turned into sadness when luckless wights 
are entombed in the coal-pits on Baugh Fell, or get sub- 
merged in the Lune or the Rawthey. 

Of the plain but substantial silver Communion Plate I need 
not say much. It comprises, besides vessels of less interest, a 
large paten (1704), the gift of Charles Otway; two cups (17 18 
and 1757) and two small patens or chalice covers, of which 
one is inscribed "Jonathan Rose, Master of Arts, and Vicar 
of Sedbergh, 17 18;*' a large tankard flagon, dated 1757 
("Leonard Croft, of Cattle's, gave £\o towards this Plate"), 
and one smaller jug-shaped flagon, the gift, in 1761, of 
Marmaduke Holme, Vicar of Clibum. 

N 



Digitized by 



Google 



I06 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Several of the monuments have been noticed already. One 
long specimen of sepulchral eulogy, formerly affixed to a pillar 
in the chancel, has been relegated to the obscurity of the 
vestry. It was, I doubt not, founded on fact, but modem 
reticence would regard it as a trifle "too-too." It relates to 
a father and a son, both snatched away in the melancholy 
month of December, 1750 — one endowed with the euphonious 
name of Christopher Comey, and the other content with 
plain John. 

*'Here rests the Youth, the virtues of whose mind 
Shone so benignly good as charmed mankind. 

Such virtues gone, the Sire repined to stay, 

And spumed with eager haste this earth -bom clay." 

But enough — I am reminded that the sight of exuberant 
affection is generally distasteful to the disinterested. 

Nearly the whole extent of the south aisle is embellished 
with "storied windows richly dight" — two of them memorials 
of the Head Masters Evans and Heppenstall, and one, opposite 
the font, appropriately, but not very artistically, presenting 
scenes connected with baptism. This last was the gift of an 
anonymous donor. The virtues of Henry Wilkinson, another 
Head Master, are commemorated in elegant Latin upon a 
handsome tablet of white marble, in the nave ; and the thought- 
ful, benevolent countenance of John Dawson, whom we shall 
meet again in Garsdale, is of superlative interest to those who 
are acquainted with the facts of his life. The bust has been 
much admired, and has sometimes, but wrongly, been attributed 
to Flaxman. It was really the work of a sculptor of the name 
of Sievier, which is inscribed on the marble, out of sight, as 
I had an opportunity of observing when it was taken down 
in the course of the restoration. 



r 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 107 

On a brass plate near the chancel steps, eight Latin elegiacs, 
signed P. W., apprise posterity that M. W. (Mary Wharton), 
who died in 1690, was an epitome of all that is best in both 
sexes, and that her sorrowing spouse trusts some day to be laid 
by her side, and would even have rejoiced to have died in her 
stead. One of the lines is a crux which has puzzled many 
respectable scholars, and Dr. Whitaker's manner of printing it 
has rendered confusion worse confounded. Good Latin, like 
good law, I have always understood should be practically 
independent of stops; but when the alternative is a portent 
like the second line of 

'* Quam vellem supplesse vices si fata tulissent, 
Credo mage ast jure et te placuisse Deo/' 

it is time to stick to plain English and abjure Latin for ever. 
It is only when the microscopical commas which guard from 
straying have been detected on the brass, and duly inserted 
(** Credo mage ast, jure et, te placuisse Deo "), that we perceive 
that an ancient thought about those dying early whom the gods 
love, has been worked up into the not inelegant sentiment : — 
" Gladly would I have supplied thy place, but thou, I believe, 
wert more the favourite of Heaven, and justly too." There are 
other indications that the mind of P.W. — Posthumus Wharton, 
** descended from the family of Wharton Hall," and " Master of 
the Free School in this place for upwards of thirty years " (see 
his communicative monument) — did not move easily in the 
trammels of metre. But we must not be too critical over a 
tombstone ; and it is perhaps more to the point to observe that 
Mary Wharton (maiden name Otway), the second of the wives 
of Posthumus Wharton, was a daughter of Sir John Otway. 
She died at Thorns, September 7th, 1690, at the early age of 
thirty-one, having predeceased her distinguished father by 
three years. She left to lament her, a daughter, Margaret,. 



Digitized by 



Google 



lo8 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

who was married to Samuel Saunders, D.D., " also Master of 
the said School for an equal period of time" as his father- 
in-law. They had two daughters, of whom Rachel, the 
younger, married Wynne Bateman, D.D., the new Master of 
the School, who wielded the ferule for another thirty years 
and more. Thus the blood of the Otways ran in the head- 
mastership for three generations successively, and the welfare 
of the School was united with that of the principal family 
in the parish for nearly a century. 

Another family of much older association with the parish 
is that of the Blands, whose name, if it were not already 
stamped upon Howgill-and-Bland, Blandsgill, Blandsfield, and 
Blandses (the two middle names are in the registers), would 
be preserved to us on the monument recording the obligations 
of two sons and a daughter to the kindness and piety of 
their mother. One of the sons here spoken of was the Rev. 
Miles Bland, Fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge, and 
Prebendary of Wells. He was second wrangler in 1808, his 
old schoolfellow at Sedbergh, Adam Sedgwick, the eminent 
geologist, being fifth in the same year. Our local Blands 
figure largely as Governors of the School, and in parochial 
administration of all kinds. They are supposed to have 
received their name originally from the hamlet of Bland, in 
Howgill, and thence to have spread to Sedbergh, Orton, 
Ireland, America, and elsewhere. One of them served Edward 
III. in his French wars; another was Sergeant Pelletier to 
Queen Elizabeth ; and a third was the Marian martyr referred 
to before. The American branch, which struck root in Vir- 
ginia about 1645, produced Colonel Theodoric Bland, a fiiend 
of General Washington. The Irish branch was founded by 
the Rev. James Bland, of Sedbergh parentage, who crossed 
the Channel as chaplain to the lord-lieutenant, in 1692, and 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 109 

became vicar of Killamey, and archdeacon and dean in due 
course. Beyond these notices I must not venture. The intri- 
cacies of relationship are unravelled in Nicholas Carlisle's 
" Collections for a History of the Ancient Family of Bland " 
(1826) ; and Miss Fanny Bland, a lady of literary tastes, has 
elucidated the descent of the American colonel, in the fifth 
volume of the Transactions of the Cumberland and Westmor- 
land Archaeological Society. 

The mention of George Washington reminds us of the 
century of Washingtons (1564- 1665) commemorated by initials 
and dates on a flat stone outside the east end of the church ; 
and accordingly we hasten thither. The two brothers, John 
and Lawrence Washington, who sailed from England about 
1658, to better their fortunes in the New World — where did 
they spring from, and who was their father ? John is known 
to have been the great-grandfather of the President, and 
hence the importance of the question. The labour which has 
been expended on the solution of this problem has been 
enormous. To say nothing of native researches, our American 
cousins have explored every will, register, and record which 
seemed likely to throw the least light on the subject. The 
result of their investigations is to track the parent-family from 
Warton, in Lancashire, to Sulgrave, in Northamptonshire, and 
elsewhere, finally running the father of the emigrants to 
ground at Purleigh, in Essex, and identifying him as the 
Rev. Lawrence Washington, who became Rector of that parish 
in 1633.* Whether the Warton family threw out an offshoot to 
Howgill and Sedbergh, we cannot tell ; but the care which 
has been taken to keep our local Washingtons together in 
the churchyard, and to chronicle their interments, shows at 

• For the latest position of the inquiry, see Harper's Monthly Magazine for 
May, 189 1 — *• The English Ancestry of Washington." 



Digitized by 



Google 



no SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

least that they were well satisfied with their parentage. There 
is unfortunately no Lawrence among them, and Simon, which 
is indicated three times out of eight, appears to be the favour- 
ite name. The stone exhibiting the initials and dates has, I 
should suppose, been an after-thought; for when "E.W. 1665 " 
is reached, there follows "I. W. 16 . .," as if the said I. W. 
had seen to the inscription in his lifetime, as far as he could, 
and then had trusted to a faithless posterity to complete the 
date of his own decease. Two Upright red-sandstones referring 
to the same family keep company with the chronological slab. 
One of them has peeled to such an extent that the single 
word " Washington " alone is legible in front, but an admon- 
itory distich on the edge, without serious obliteration, reminds 

us that 

** Dangers stand s to the tomb, 

And fierce diseases wait around to huny mortals home." 

The other is fast following the example of illegibility, and I 
transcribe all that remains, and a trifle more: — 

'* This stone is erected in further Memory of the an[tie]nt Fam[ily] of 
the Washing[ton]s of [Gate]side in Howgill. 

Simon Washington departed this Life Oct. 17 : . . . 

James son of H . . . . Agnes Washington departed this Life " 

Thomas Washington Atkinson, who died in 1890, was the last 
person at Sedbergh who bore the illustrious name; but the 
crowded state of the graves at the east end precluded him 
from being laid among his kindred. 

From General Washington to ordinary mortals is a great 
drop. But indeed there is not much more to detain us in the 
churchyard. The railings were put up in Canon Piatt's time, 
before which, I understand, the ground was practically open to 
all comers. Playfiil children found in it coigns of vantage 
for their gambols, and the footpaths furnished "short cuts" 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. Ill 

for their busier elders. The earliest tombstone is dated 1634, 
which is nearly a century prior to the oldest legible inscrip- 
tion in the parish churchyard at Kendal. Particularity has 
recorded upon another the death of an infant "one Quarther 
of A year Old;" and the epitaph " 1734 I. I. Saxton" (Sexton), 
without further note or comment, has always seemed to me 
the perfection of brevity. Close to the north side of the 
church is the humble headstone of John Dawson, the mathe- 
matician. It agrees with the register in making him a year 
older than the later and .better known monument in the 
church. Near the same place, a similar stone informs us that 
the Rev. John Sedgwick, who died in 1836, aged eighty-seven, 
had been Incumbent of the Perpetual Curacy of Howgill for 
the period of sixty-four years — his first and only preferment, 
which, though only ;^5o a year at that time, he would probably 
have hesitated to exchange for a better elsewhere. On the 
south side, near the chancel door, a table-tomb (1734) tells us 
in halting versicles concerning John Mackereth and Anne 
his sister, how that 

** Full seventy pounds 
These two did leave 
Chiefly unto the Poor 
To be distributed yearly 
Till time shall be no more.*' 

Close by lie the remains of Thomas Palmer (1854), who 
"founded and endowed six Cottages called *The Sedbergh 
Widows' Hospital,' for the reception and accommodation of 
six poor widows." 

The churchyard is all but full, and will shortly be closed. 
Even "the cold north's unhallowed ground," against which 
there exists a prejudice in many country parishes, as the 
fittest depository of suicides and the unbaptized, shows a 



Digitized by 



Google 



1 1 2 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

numerous array of tombstones. It will, however, be observed 
that these are all of a comparatively modem date. But for 
future interments several acres of land, conveniently situated, 
have been generously presented to the township by Mrs. Dormer, 
and the new Cemetery was consecrated by the Bishop of the 
diocese on June 12th, 1891. 

" Old boys " of the Evans period will remember the yew- 
tree which they used to pass before entering the church. It 
was the survivor of the two hoary sisters which Dr. Whitaker 
notes as moribund about 1820, and to which he ascribes a 
high antiquity — "two vast yew-trees, now almost in the last 
period of decay, and in all probability coeval with the church 
itself." The trunk of the survivor had, before the end, become 
a mere shell, but still supported an umbrageous burden of 
sombre green. After being shored up for a time, it yielded to 
the wintry blasts of the night of January 27th, 1877. Popular 
tradition represents George Fox as having stood beneath it 
when he harangued the fair folk in the churchyard for several 
hours. Many articles of ornament made out of the old tree 
are treasured by the townspeople, and the grave of Canon 
Piatt occupies the site where it stood. 

♦fflp%ERE we pause — but not to enter upon a fresh chapter. 
■■•/ jjjQ Church and the School stand in the relation of 
mother and daughter; and having described one member of 
the family, it is fitting that we should pursue the fortunes of 
the other without any unnatural severance. The School arose 
on glebe-land, and in connection with the duties of religion. 
Its founder was an ecclesiastic ; its first masters were chantry 
priests, and its Head Master, until lately, has invariably been a 
clergyman. The history of the two institutions overlaps and 
intertwines, as we have partly seen. From force of circum- 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 11^ 

stances, the connection between them may have become 
attenuated to a thread, but originally it was close and strong. 

On the i2th of August, 1527 or 1528 — at any rate 19 
Henry VIII. — Christopher Hilton, last abbot but one of 
Coverham, received two important visitors at his monastery — 
Thomas Donnington, bachelor of law, Archdeacon of Richmond, 
and general commissary, and Richard Mydlam, Vicar of 
Sedbergh. Probably the meeting was by appointment — it 
could hardly have been accidental. After such cheer as the 
abbot's kitchen afforded had been partaken of, business would 
be mooted in due course ; and the application of Master Roger 
Lupton, clerk, for a lease in perpetuity at a fixed rent of a close 
known as School House Garth, at Sedbergh, upon which he had 
erected a school at his own proper charges for the benefit of 
his native place, and also of a certain messuage adjacent called 
the Lofthouse, was duly considered. How long the school had 
been built we are not told. It may have been a year or two, 
but at anyrate the matter was now ripe for a definite settlement. 
Vicar, patron, and ordinary were present together ; and, with the 
joint sanction of these three, it was allowable at that time 
practically to alienate church property by a lease without limit 
of years. The merits of Master Lupton were patent. The 
triumvirate took a favourable view of his application, and 
unanimously confirmed to him the School House Garth and 
messuage aforesaid, at the annual rents of ggrf. and £^ 2s. od. 
respectively, to the use of his foundation for ever. A document 
was drawn up accordingly, the common seal of the abbey, 
and the official seal of the archdeacon, were appended; and 
these, with the signature of the vicar, made the transaction 
as valid and binding as ink, parchment, and wax could effect. 

The next step which Roger Lupton took was to endow a 

O 



Digitized by 



Google 



114 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

chantry out of the lands which he had thus acquired, and to 
place them under the management of four trustees or governors, 
the first whom we read of being three Blands — Rowland, 
Henry, and Thomas — and James Cowper. A connection with 
the University remained to be established; and he put the 
coping-stone to his foundation by endowing six scholarships at 
St. John's College, Cambridge, at a cost of ;^6oo, to be held by 
students from his school at Sedbergh and none other. Two 
more scholarships and two fellowships were added some years 
later, in 1536, the only condition imposed on his beneficiaries 
being an especial interest in their prayers before, and, above 
all, after his decease. On this second occasion the authorities 
of St. John's College received of Master Roger the sum of 
;^40o, to be invested by them in lands sufficient for the purposes 
of the trust. 

The master of the School and the priest of the chantry 
would be one and the same individual, and he would vary the 
monotony of teaching by "singing for the souls" of the founder 
and the founder's ancestors. Not a few of our old grammar- 
schools were similarly associated with chantries in their origin. 
Those at Appleby and Brough, to quote instances not very 
remote, are cases in point. But evil days were at hand for 
the chantries. The belief in purgatory being on the wane, 
endowments of this character were held to be unnecessary; 
and in the last fifteen months of Henry VIII. (1545), when the 
revenues of the dissolved monasteries had departed from the 
pockets of the King, Parliament passed an Act giving him the 
property of the chantries and other institutions of a similar 
kind. But as death summoned him so soon, to settle his 
accounts before a higher tribunal, not much mischief was done. 
At the beginning of the following reign, however, a similar 
privilege was conferred on Edward VI. (1547) in respect of 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAlkfMAR SCHOOL. II5 

those chantries which had not come into the possession of his 
father. So Roger Lupton's chantry was hopelessly doomed ; 
and the lands which had by this time spread to Lockbank, 
Frostrow, Cautley, Dowbiggin, and elsewhere, were sold and 
dispersed into various hands — Sir Edward Warner, Sylvester 
Leigh, and Leonard Bate, for example — though the Lofthouse 
estate, the original endowment of the Master, escaped confis- 
cation, and remained, as it still remains, attached to the School. 

As Roger Lupton had died in 1540, he was spared the pain 
which the dissolution of his chantry at Sedbergh would have 
caused him. He had become Provost of Eton in 1503 and 
Canon of Windsor; and as he was also a Prebendary of Lincoln 
it is plain that his opportunities of preferment were neither few 
nor far between. The generous spirit which prompted him to 
do so much for the good of his native Sedbergh did not 
desert him at Eton. " Lupton's Chapel " and " Lupton's Tower" 
are the substantial additions which he made to the college 
buildings. He was biu-ied in his chapel there, and left an 
enigmatical allusion to his name on the door, to wit, a tun 
inscribed with the letters Z. U,P. The old family of Lupton 
is still represented at Sedbergh, and the Christian name of 
Roger reappears at intervals. The last Roger Lupton who 
permanently resided among us, departed this life in 1877, at 
the ripe age of seventy-nine. 

Of the history of Roger Lupton's School during the twenty 
years of its transient existence, we do not know much; but 
among the Richmond wills, in the collection published by the 
Surtees Society, there is one belonging to the first ascertained 
Master, Henry Blomeyr, dated November 5th, 1543, which gives 
us some interesting glimpses of the man and his times. In 
it the chaplains or chantry priests have the respectful title 
of " Sir " prefixed to their names, as was usual then. Quaint 



Digitized by 



Google 



1 1 6 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Fuller says there were more * Sirs ' than * Knights ' at that time. 
Readers of Shakespeare may remember that Christopher 
Urswick, a former Archdeacon of Richmond, is addressed in 
Richard IIL as ^^ Sir Christopher;" and this clerical title was 
continued in some places to a much more recent period. 
Sir Leonard Fawcet and Sir Richard Bland we have encoun- 
tered above in the will of Mabel Archer (1558), from which we 
gather that the wear and tear of fifteen years did not inca- 
pacitate them from discharging their spiritual functions with 
renewed vigour in the days of Queen Mary. Sir Jefferay 
Archer, we may take it, was a relation of Mabel. James 
Cowper and Rowland Bland, supervisors appointed to assist 
the executors in carrying out the testator's wishes, and Henry 
Bland, a witness, we have noted as the names of three out of 
the four first governors of Roger Lupton's School. 

TrentalSy it may be observed, were services of thirty 
masses said on thirty different days; and albs^ corporals^ 
and sergeSy were narrow-sleeved tunics of linen, coverings 
for the host, and large candles, respectively. In the provision 
concerning the last-named article, we have most likely the 
origin of the light which Edward VI.'s commissioners reported 
as maintained at Sedbergh. Mazer cups are often mentioned 
in old wills, and seem to have been ornamental goblets of 
some size and value, serving frequently as family heirlooms. 
A side-gown was a long one — most probably, in this case, a 
cassock. If Topcliffe, near Northallerton, was Henry Blomeyr's 
birthplace, as seems likely from the burial of his father there, 
the * Master of the Hospital ' may suggest to us the Hospital 
of St. Nicholas, at Richmond. The obscure expression * at a 
point and a price of,' relates to some transaction of which 
we have not the particulars. One may conjecture — but it is 
only conjecture — that the testator, before leaving Kirkby 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. II7 

(Kirby-in-Cleveland, that is) for Sedbergh, had agreed* to 
part with his furniture, at a valuation, to Christopher Hudson 
and his dame, Helen ; but that no money having been forth- 
coming on this account, he now generously makes a clear 
gift of the articles to the widow and her daughters, along 
with forty shillings for arrears of rent. The scholarships, 
about which there was some difl&culty, may reasonably enough 
have been the two last which Roger Lupton had endowed for 
his Sedbergh students ; and Master Fawcet, apparently residing 
at St. John's College, may haply be the Dr. Fawcet who acknow- 
ledged John Bland, the martyr, as his fellow-Sedberghian. 

With these preparatory directions, I now bid the reader 
good speed as he accompanies Henry Blomeyr, first Master 
of Roger Lupton's School, through his testamentary jungle of 
1 6th century orthography: — 

*' I, Henry Blomeyr, of Sedber, in the countie of Yorke, chaplayne, hole 
*'off mynde and good remembraunce, preventying the uncertayn chaunce 
**and tyme of dethe in this maner insewing, doithe orden and make this 
' ' my last will and testament. First I commende my soule into the handys 
"of my Lord God, Jesu Christ, my creatour and redemer, in full faithe of 
"our mother holy churche his spowse, with full hope of his infinite marcy, 
* ' beseechyng his blessed mother Saynt Marye, and all Saynts and company 
•' of hevyn, to praie for me. And my mortall body to be buried in christiane 
*• mannys buriall, if it please God, in the churche yerde of the said Sedber, at 
*' the east ende of the churche, nye the graves of my mother and suster, and 
"at the dale of buriall I will there be complete observaunce done for my 
'' soule after the usage ther. Item for the use of the more honest, cleynly, 
"and decent kepyng and wesshyng of the adornamentts belongyng the 
** altars of the said churche, for the more reverence of the blessed sacrament 
** there mynystred, as corporaxes, altar clothes, albys, towells, and suche other, 
" I bewhethe twenty shelyngs to be ordered bi the discretion of the churche- 
** wardens and ther successours, for the tyme beyng, to uphold the said 

* Compare the translation of Isaiah xxviii. 15, in Matthew's Bible (1537) : "Tush, 
death and we are at a poynte; and as for hell, we have made a condycion wyth it." 



Digitized by 



Google 



I 



Il8 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

** twenty shelyngs yerely with contynewaunce, for the use and purpose 
'* afiforsaid. Item I bewhethe other twenty shelyngs to be ordered in like 
*' maner bi the saide churchwardens and their successours, for the uphold}Tig 
" of one seirge of waxe yerly with contynewance, to stande afEor the blessed 
** sacrament in the saide churche. Item where there was negligence and 
'* oversight in the composition concemyng two scholarshippes in Saynt John 
** College in Cambridge, for two scolars to be taken furth of Sedber scole, 
" as other ar, iff so be that the Maister and Felowes of the said College 
** do cause the said composition to be reformed to the trew intent, I give 
*them for the doyng therof the fourty and sevyn shelyngs and sex pens 
**whiche Maister Fawcet receyved of me, and it is my will that the same 
*' be made up bi my executours and supervisours to the somme of sex pounds 
"thirteyn shelyngs and foure pens for the said intent. Item I bewheth to 
**the churche of Topcliff, in remembraunce of the soule of my father there 
**buryed, and all trew christiane soules, to be disposed in necessary thyngs 
" of the said churche, bi the discretion of the churchewardens there, fourty 
*• shelyngs. Item I forgive Helen, wedow and late wyff of Christofor 
** Hudson, all suche detts as he and she awght me at his departyng. Item 
** I give to the said Helen and hir two dowghters Margaret and Elizabeth, 
'* al maner of suche my howshold stuff as they the said Christofor his wifif 
" and I was at a price and a poynt of. Item I bewhethe to the said wedow 
** fourty shelyngs for payment of the income of the tenement at Kirkby. 
*' Item I give to eyther of hir said dowghters Margaret and Elezabethe, a 
** masour cuppe and thre silver spones. Item I give to Thomas Metcalf, 
** my suster son, and Robert his brother and his wifiF, one obligation of sex 
*' pounds thirteyn shelyngs four pens, y* I lent unto Edmunde Metcalf their 
** father, and if he agre well with them for it, then I forgive him xvsAiijd, 
**y* he aweth me besides the said obligation, and if he do not so agre 
"withe them, then I give to the said Thomas and Robert the said xvs, i'lijd, 
**whiche he receyved in my name of the maister of th' ospitall. Item I 
** bewheth to Sir James Gill prest, xs. to say one tryntall and to praie for 
" my soule. Item to Sir Leonarde Fawcet, to say a tryntall in like maner, 
** xs. Item to Sir Richarde Blande for one other tryntall and to praie for 
**me, xj. Item I give to Sir John Beck, prest, my ridyng gown and my 
** short gown and my worset jacket, with my sarsenet typett and a silver 
*' spone. Item to Sir Jefferay Archer my side gown and a silver spone. 
"Item I assigne to my successor, to remain to the use of the fowndation 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 19 

"of the fre scole at Sedber, sex silver spones, with suche certayn of my 
"bokes as shalbe delyvered bi indenture at the discretion of my executours, 
** to remayn as heyre lomes to the said foundation. And the residew of 
"my bokes I give to the said Sir John Beck. And I beseche the right 
** worshipfull maister Marmaduke Tunstall, Knyght, to witsave [vouchsafe] 
"to be hede supervisour of this my last will and testament, to be performede 
"to the trew intent, desiryng James Cowper and Rowlande Blande to be 
" supervisours also, to help and fortify my executours to the trew intent of 
" the same. And I make th' afforsaid Sir John Becke and Sir Jefferay 
"Archer, chapplayns, my executours of this my last will and testament. 
"And I will that they, withe the counsell of my said supervisours, distribute 
"and dispose the superplusage and overplus of my goods, above not 
" bewhethed, bi thair discretions to poore folks and in other dedys of charitie. 
"And for the trew gentilnes of the said Maister Tunstall, shewed already, 
"and speciall trust that I have in hym, to se this my last will performed, 
" I will that his maistershippe have fourty shelyngs. And I will y* my 
" other supervisours and executours have ich one of them ten shelyng given. 
"These witnesses, Sir Leonard Fawcet and Sir James Gill, chaplayns, and 
"Henry Blande, with other.** 

As Henry Blomeyr made his will in 1543, it is probable 
that he felt his end approaching, and soon after, in the course 
of nature, ceased to be Master. He was succeeded by Robert 
Hebblethwaite, clerk, who had been admitted to a Fellowship 
at St. John's College in 1538. There is among the elegant 
Latin letters of Roger Ascham, one addressed by him, on 
behalf of the College, to Robert Holgate, Bishop of Llandaff, 
invoking his good offices in favour [of this newly- appointed 
Master. The letter is without date, but it is probable that it 
was written in anticipation of Holgate's translation to the 
archbishopric of York, where, as Lord President of the North, 
he might be able to interpose with good eflFect in affairs at 
Sedbergh. Holgate was translated to the see of York in 1544, 
and this leads to the conclusion that the year of Henry 
Blomeyr's demise must also have been the year of Robert 



Digitized by 



Google 



I20 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Hebblethwaite's appointment, and that the trouble, whatever 
it was, arose immediately on his arrival. The letter unfortun- 
ately deals only with generalities, as a messenger had been 
sent with it to give the prelate a full and trustworthy account 
of all particulars. Ascham recites Roger Lupton's endowment 
of his school with a prcedioluvty or small estate, for the Master's 
support — Lofthouse and appurtenances, no doubt — and says that 
Robert Hebblethwaite, finding that certain persons of the 
name of Bland and Cowper were minded to do him an injury 
in respect of this property, had moved the College to ask his 
Lordship to restrain their cupidity. I should be sorry to 
charge any one unjustly, but I rather opine that Bland and 
Cowper were the two trustees of that name, and were con- 
templating some diminution of the new Master's income — a 
measure which he could not be expected to regard with equal 
complacency. We may hope that all came right in the end, 
and that Robert Hebblethwaite's tenure of office was not long 
embittered by this cause. 

In 1547 (i Edward VI.) was renewed the Act by which, in 
the thirty-seventh year of Henry VIII. (1545), the endowment 
of all chantries had become forfeited to the King. But Robert 
Hebblethwaite survived the crash. Peradventure he had a 
hard struggle to keep the School afloat through the few years 
during which the other lands were sold and squandered, and 
the destination of his prcBdiolum was still undetermined. 
One hopes that neither the rapacity of royal commissioners, 
nor the straitened circumstances of the Master, endangered 
the continuance of the six silver spoons and the select library 
which Henry Blomeyr had so thoughtfully left as a permanent 
plenishing for the use of the School. Fortunately, Robert 
Hebblethwaite had two good strings to his bow, and when 
the chantry string snapped, the scholastic was at hand to 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 121 

supply its place. His Fellowship at St. John's was a sufficient 
gxiarantee of his learning; and Ascham's testimony to his 
character as a most respectable man without any fads — vir 
honesties et moderattis — prepares us to learn that when the royal 
charter for the resuscitation of Roger Lupton's chantry-school 
was opened, it contained the nomination of Robert Hebble- 
thwaite as the first Head Master. After figuring as the second 
and last official under the old dispensation, he reappears as 
the first of that series of Head Masters who, for more than 
three centuries, have handed on the torch of learning until 
our days. 

The Act conferring upon the young King the property of 
all chantries, church-lights, guilds, and the like, intimated that 
the revenues should be devoted, in part, to the maintenance 
of grammar-schools. This being the case, the inhabitants of 
Sedbergh, supported by persons of influence in the neighbour- 
hood, were sufficiently on the alert to petition the King for a 
favourable consideration of their case. Moreover, in 1550, 
Thomas Lever, soon afterwards seventh Master of St. John's 
College, when preaching before Edward VI. at Court, had 
brought the lamentable plight of our impoverished and 
decayed School pointedly before the notice of the King and 
his counsellors. 

"Your Magestie,*' he says, **hath had gyuen, and receaued by Act of 
"Parliament, CoUegies, Chauntries, and guyldes for many good consider- 
'* acions, and especially as appeareth in y« same Act, for erecting of Gram- 
*'mer scoles, to the educacion of youthe in vertue and godlynes, to the 
** farther augmentyng of the vniuersyties, and better prouision for the poore 
'• and needye. But nowe, many Grammer scholes, and much charitable 
"prouision for the poore, be taken, solde, and made awaye, to the great 
"slaunder of you and your lawes, to the utter discomforte of the poore, to 
"the greuous offence of the people, to the most miserable drounynge of 
"youthe in ignoraunce, and sore decaye of the Vniuersities. 
P 



Digitized by 



Google 



122 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

*• There was in the North countrey, amongest the ntde people in know- 
** ledge (which be most readye to spende their lyues and goodes, in seniying 
'*the Kyng at the burnying of a Beacon) there was a Grammer schole 
** founded, hauying in the Vniuersitie of Cambridge, of the same foundacion 
*' viii. scholerships, eucr replenyshed with the scholers of that schole, which 
'• scole is now solde, decayed, and loste. Mo there be of lyke sorte handled : 
** But I recyte thys only bicause I knowe that the sale of it was once stayed 
"of charitie, and yet aften^'ards broughte to pass by bribrye as I hearde 
**say, and beleue it because that it is only bribrye that customablye ouer- 
" cometh charitie. 

•* For Gods sake, you that be in aucthoritie, loke vpon it."* 

The result of these eflForts to recover the squandered heritage 
Avas all that could be desired; for by the royal charter dated 
May 14th, 1552, the old chantry-school, at that time dissolved 
and well-nigh defunct, came forth from the crucible reconstituted 
and re-endowed, and radiant and resplendent with the patronage 
of royalty itself. The new School was one of the fifty-three 
grammar-schools founded by Edward VI. out of property which 
had been placed at his disposal ; and it will be interesting to 
see from what sources its emoluments were to be derived. 
Lofthouse, the support of the original foundation, remained. 
Deepmire, lately the property of the Rood Guild, was added. 
The church-light is not mentioned, so perhaps it went elsewhere. 
The School, which had died of the chantry complaint, revives 
to enjoy the benefactions of four other chantries which had 
existed at Halifax, Ilkley, Bamby, and Thorne. The tithes 
and other belongings of the rectory and vicarage of Weston, 
previously appropriated to an obit or annual commemoration- 
service in York Minster, together with lands left for a college 
at Rotherham, a free chapel at Coley, and church-lights at 
Fishlake, combine with some miscellaneous items to produce a 

• Arber's Reprint of ** Lever's Sermons," p. 81. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 23. 

clear yearly total of ;^2o 135. lod.y to which the King, of his 
own special bounty, added another;^ 20 per annum, to be taken 
at the discretion of the Governors from the income of any lands 
or tithes in the possession of him, his heirs or successors. If 
we multiply this £^0 by ten, to allow for the change in the 
value of money, we shall see that this was no bad start. The 
Governors — the cream of the residents in the parish — were to 
be twelve in number, and to have the privilege of a common 
seal and corporate rights. The staff was to consist of a Master 
and an Under-master, of whom the former was to be elected 
in future by the Master, Fellows, and Scholars of St. John's 
College, Cambridge. The School was to be kept where it had 
formerly been ; the old habitation of the Master — Lofthouse it 
would seem, which, considerably modernised, now reposes in the 
shade of the Head Master's house — was to revert to its former 
use as the Master's dwelling ; and the scholarships and fellow- 
ships of Roger Lupton were to be attached to the new foundation, 
and were to be tenable, as aforetime, at St. John's, by youths 
from the School. 

The fellowships ceased to be specially connected with 
Sedbergh in 1857, when many similar restrictions in the 
College were abolished. As regards the scholarships, it is 
necessary to premise that Henry Hebblethwaite, citizen and 
draper of London, by will dated 27th June, 1587, left ;^50o for 
the purchase of lands for the foundation of two scholarships 
at St. John's for poor and friendless scholars from Sedbergh 
School, preference being given to such as should be of the 
name and kindred of the founder. In i860 the two sets of 
scholarships were combined and re-arranged under the name 
of the Lupton and Hebblethwaite Exhibitions — six in number, 
of the yearly value of ;^33 6s. Sd. each, two to be given 
annually to candidates who have been scholars of Sedbergh 



Digitized by 



Google 



124 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



School for at least two years, and in the case of one of the 
two Exhibitions, a native of the parish of Sedbergh to have 
the preference. 

At this point it will be convenient to exhibit a list of the 
Head Masters from the commencement of the School to the 
present day. It will be useful for reference, and will enable the 
reader to see at a glance where he is, and whither he is going. 
As in all cases subsequent to the Edwardian foundation, at 
any rate, the Head Masters were graduates of some standing, 
and usually Fellows of St. John's College, and until 1 880 were in 
holy orders, we may mentally prefix to their names the title of 
" Reverend," and except where otherwise expressed, append to 
them the degree of M.A. The dates denote the year of 
appointment, ascertained or approximate (^.), and those Masters 
who have monuments in the Church or churchyard are lettered 
accordingly {m.). Two Masters, not interred at Sedbergh, have 
memorial-windows in the Church, nevertheless (w.). 



c. 1528. 
^- 1543. 

1552- 

c. 1585. 

1623. 

1648. 



1657- 

1660. 

m, 1674, 

1706. 
m. 170Q. 



Henry Blomeyr. 
Robert Hebblethwaite. 



Robert Hebblethwaite, 
John Mayer. 
Gilbert Nelson. 
Richard Jackson 

(sequestered), 
Richd. Garthwaite, 

Usher, 
1656. — Gibson, Master 
pro tern, 
James Buchanan. 
Edward Fell. 
Posthumus Wharton. 
1704. Simon Atkinson, 
Usher, 
— Dwyer. 

Samuel Saunders, D.D. 



w. 



1742 
1746 
1782. 
1799, 
1819 



William Broxholme. 
Wynne Bateman, D.D. 
Christopher Hull. 
William Stevens. 
Henry Wilkinson. 
Isaac Green, Second 

Master, 1 831 -1869. 
1838. Hartley Coleridge, 
Master pro tent, 
1838. John Harrison Evans. 
1 86 1. Henry George Day. 

1875. William Thompson, 
Master pro tern. 



1875. Frederick Heppenstall. 

1879. J. W. Burrow, 

Master pro tern, 

1880. Henry George Hart. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 125 

To resume. How long Robert Hebblethwaite's equable 
temperament enabled him to brook the perpetual iteration of 
gerund and supine is not known ; but he was still Master in 
1562, when he was living at Lofthouse, though not undisputed 
monarch of all he surveyed. Little worries about that inte- 
resting tenement, which had been recrudescent for some time, 
came to a head in that year ; and one Robert Bower, husband- 
man, convinced himself, and not only himself, but three arbi- 
trators, or at any rate a majority of them, that the grasping 
grammarian was clinging to "a parcel of ground" to which 
he, the said Bower, was more justly entitled. It was decided 
that the schoolmaster for the time being, or whoever should 
be the owner of Lofthouse, should ever after pay Sd. a year, 
at Whitsuntide, for the land so withheld, but should not be 
liable to any "fine, income, or gressome" for the same. 
Robert Hebblethwaite doubtless received the announcement 
of the award with his wonted equanimity, and went on his 
way rejoicing. 

He probably died before our register of burials commences 
(1595), and he seems to have been succeeded by Mr. John 
Mayer, M.A., who is, in all likelihood, the schoolmaster referred 
to in the first of the following testamentary extracts, as he is 
certainly the "Mr. Maior" of the second, (i) Reginald (or 
Reynold) Harrison, mercer, twice Mayor of Stamford (1569 
and 1581), by his will dated 1594, and proved 1598, did not 
forget his old school at Sedbergh, or his connections at 
Sarthwaite, in Dowbiggin. After directions for his burial at 
Stamford, and some legacies in that quarter, he bequeaths 
"to the School of Sedberghe in Yorks. £20, to be disposed 
"and bestowed by the direction of the schoolmaster and 
"feoffees of the same school, towards the relief of two poor 
" scholars learning in the said school, wherein my will is that 



Digitized by 



Google 



126 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

" the poorest of my name and kindred, if any there be, shall 
"have the preference, as at this present there is one of 
"Henry Harryson's sons, of Sawrethwaite, dwelling with 
"Mr. Hampton [the Vicar of SedberghJ whom I would have 
" preferred." He also gives " to the schoolmaster of Sedbergh 
I05.;" towards the occasional repair of Sarthwaite Bridge, 
" which is the highway to the Church from Sawrethwaite," £/[ ; 
and "to Laurence Stanton, clerk, parson of Ufl&ngton," near 
Stamford, £^ 6s. Sd. (2) Whether the Rector of Uffington 
had also been through Sedbergh School, I do not know, but 
it seems probable; as, besides ;^6 to St. John's College, he 
also, by his will dated 16 13, leaves "to the repair of Sedbergh 
School, four marcs, and to Mr. Maior, the schoolmaster, 20^."* 

Our register records the interment on March ist, 1623, of 
Mr. John Mayer, M.A., Master of the Free Grammar School. 
Between the first appointment of Robert Hebblethwaite in 
1543, and the death of John Mayer in 1623, is a period which 
would allow to each of these names a mastership of 40 years — 
a respectable score, certainly ; but as it was not the fashion at 
that time to rush through life like a whirlwind, there does not 
seem to be any necessity to interpolate a hypothetical Master 
between them. 

We cannot but feel a kindly interest in the next Master, 
Gilbert Nelson, on account of the pleasing picture drawn of 
him in the Life of John Barwick. He was an M.A. of 
St. John's College, but does not seem to have been a Fellow. 
Anyhow, he possessed the happy art of gaining the affection 
of his pupils, though they were not blind to the fact that the 
necessity of enlarging his receipts by clerical duty prevented 
him from concentrating his full energies on the School. The 

• The above extracts I owe to "The Yorkshire Genealogist" (ii. 102-105), where the 
wills are given more fully. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMNfAR SCHOOL. \2^ 

*bit farm' (prcBdiolum) of Roger Lupton's foundation had 
multiplied itself in many ways in the Royal Charter ; but what 
was luxury for a bachelor might be only genteel poverty for a 
family without extraneous resources. Good Gilbert had four 
daughters, all baptized at Sedbergh, and when he died in 1648, 
leaving his widow in needful circumstances, an old pupil 
gratefully came to the rescue, as we shall presently see. 

John and Peter Barwick, of whom I have spoken at large 
before, were at school under this Master. Their testimony is 
that he taught Latin well, but Greek indifferently. He was 
not, however, the dry verbal critic into which schoolmasters of 
a past age were prone to degenerate ; but he felt some touch of 
human interest in his author beyond and apart from the 
grammatical puzzles which could be extorted from his words. 
He was particularly exhilarating in his expositions of Plautus 
and Terence; and his lively illustrations and racy comments 
sweetened the root of learning considerably, and imbued his 
scholars with a corresponding enthusiasm. He occasionally 
had portions of Latin plays rendered dramatically, and his best 
pupils were taught to tread the boards in character. He took 
great pride in the performances of his favourite pupil, John 
Barwick, and was particularly delighted to see him, as Hercules 
Raving, "tear a passion to tatters," and make the groundlings 
roar. 

Nor must I omit so convincing a proof of the kindheartedness 
of Gilbert Nelson as that which is supplied by George Sedgwick, 
who was bom at Capplethwaite, in Killington, in 16 18, and 
afterwards lived on his father's small estate a mile north of 
Sedbergh. He died in 1685, at the old manor-house called 
Collin Field, near Kendal, which he purchased for his retirement 
with the aid of Anne Countess of Pembroke, whom he had 
served with much acceptance as secretary for eighteen years. 



Digitized by 



Google 



128 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

The pulpit in Kendal parish church now stands over his grave, 
and the oak frame containing an appreciative Latin epitaph, 
written on parchment, may be found at some distance. His 
father's removal from Capplethwaite had been caused by the 
loss of a large sum of money through being bound with a 
brother-in-law; and Gilbert Nelson, out of pure goodwill to 
young George, boarded him gratis in his own house for more 
than a year. " One good turn deserves another ;" and the pupil 
did not forget this great kindness when the opportunity of 
showing his gratitude came round. " A great honour I had," 
he says in the autobiography which he wrote, " for the memory 
" of so worthy a person ; and though God did not prolong his 
"life till my coming into the north in 1652, yet I had the 
" means and opportunity, by the favour of my most honoured 
" lady the Countess of Pembroke, to place his widow (then in 
" a low condition) in one of her ladyship's almshouses in 
"Appleby, then newly built and endowed by her, where she 
"had a convenient chamber, a garden, and £8 sl year during 
" her life ; taking a daughter of hers at the same time into her 
" service, from whence she was afterwards well married." 

The death of Gilbert Nelson (1648) took place in the 
troublous time of the Civil War. A few years previously the 
University of Cambridge had been turned upside down and 
inside out by the Parliamentarians. They had decapitated 
a Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, and were soon to imbrue their 
hands in the blood of an Archbishop and of the King himself 
Meanwhile, they were busily engaged in administering the 
Solemn League and Covenant right and left, as a test of 
acquiescence in their doings. This was a nauseous and bitter 
potion which those Fellows who were true to the Church and 
loyal to the King, found it impossible to swallow; and one 
after another — Barwick and Otway among the number — they 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 129 

declined the proffered draught and were turned adrift, till the 
Colleges had been emptied of all their best men. Their places 
were supplied with persons of less learning and respectability, 
but of greater pliableness — bardi ut plurimum et infruniti 
tngenn homunculi^ as Dr. Peter Barwick, ransacking out-of-the- 
way comers of Latinity for words to characterise them, puts 
it — " blockheads for the most part, and senseless scoundrels, " 
as his translator tersely renders it in the plainest of plain 
English. 

It was to the usurping Fellows of St. John's College that 
the Governors of our School had to report the vacancy in the 
headmastership, and to request a good supply. There must 
have been great searchings of heart among the loyal people 
of Sedbergh as to the result of their application, even when 
the new grammarian, Richard Jackson, M.A., was heralded by a 
college testimonial describing him as " a man of such approved 
** abilities and conversation, and withall of such experience as 
"wee cannot but hope that he will by God's blessinge prove 
"instrumental for regaineing the reputation of yo"^ schoole, 
"and promotinge as well pietie as learning among you." 

One would be glad to know how the Governors felt when 
this paragon of Parliamentarian perfection arrived at Sedbergh. 
I fear the "friendly reception" bespoken by the College 
would be a trifle lukewarm. Probably the church bells 
did not ring out a cordial greeting ; and certainly there would 
be many significant shakings of the head when Mr. Jackson 
took up his abode at an alehouse, and as soon as he had time 
to take in the situation, proceeded to involve the Governors 
in expensive lawsuits respecting rival tenants of the school 
lands. How they managed to liquidate law-bills to the extent 
of ;^2oo and more, in the first three years of this Master's 
reign, is not clear. If the money came out of the School 
Q 



Digitized by 



Google 



I30 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

revenues, so much the worse for Mr. Jackson, and if out of 
their own pockets, it was hard upon them. Anyhow, in 1651, 
Baron Thorpe commissioned Sir Robert Barwick to call the 
parties before him and make an end of their diflFerences. Sir 
Robert pronounced the schoolmaster "unconformable to 
reason," which was decidedly a triumph for the Governors, 
and no doubt a considerable solace for wasted cash. 

In 1654 matters came to a crisis, and the pent-up feelings 
of the Governors found relief in a petition to the College for 
the removal of Mr. Jackson, in which the shortcomings of the 
whilom promoter of piety and learning were shown up in no 
measured terms. His "turbulent and vexatious temper/' his 
self-seeking and Htigiousness, his unabashed demeanour in the 
face of judicial reproofs, his neglect of the school buildings 
and of his duties therein, and his debauched and dissolute 
conversation, are dwelt upon by turns. "A constant haunter of 
alehouses, frequently intoxicated with immoderate drinking^' — 
as witness one Sabbath-day, when he was notoriously in his 
cups and bent on laying wagers — he had now, in order to obtain 
leisure for these diversions, discharged the usher and the few 
remaining scholars, and shut up the School entirely. In fact, 
he had borne himself so oflFensively that nobody could be 
induced to take the ofl&ce of Governor when a vacancy occurred ; 
and the College is besought either to continue the services of 
the cashiered usher, Richard Garthwaite, M.A., or to send 
some other duly qualified person to save the School from 
impending ruin. 

This document, which Mr. Jackson describes as " a scur- 
rilous railing petition," does not seem to have brought about 
the result desired by the Governors; and indeed, in 1654, he 
satisfactorily passed the ordeal of Cromwell's "Triers," who 
sat at Whitehall to inquire into the spiritual state of Church 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 131 

ministers, and ascertain their conversion ; though it may reason- 
ably be suspected that his being well-afFected towards the 
powers that then were, contributed in no slight degree to this 
clean bill of health. Later in the same year, commissioners 
were appointed in each county for ejecting scandalous minis- 
ters; and when one of these committees was announced to 
sit at York, the Governors thought that redress might now 
have come within practicable distance, and they determined 
to open a fresh campaign, with the support of Garsdale at 
their back. Mr. Jackson, besides being Master at Sedbergh, 
was also Minister at Garsdale; and when he got drenched 
with rain on his journeys thither, he naturally required con- 
siderable refreshment to keep the cold out. Behold, then, the 
incriminated clerk and pedagogue summoned by the allied 
forces before the commissioners of his Highness, at York, to 
make answer to the articles presented against him ! 

One witness from Sedbergh deposes, upon oath, that on a 
certain Lord's Day he had seen Mr. Jackson in an alehouse, 
much the worse for drink, and the landlord wagering him a 
tankard of good malt liquor that he could not correctly repeat 
the words which he had just uttered. Mr. Jackson accepted 
the wager with confidence — and lost! From this it appears 
that tests of inebriety were not unknown at Sedbergh two 
hundred and forty years ago, although they were scarcely such 
delicate instruments of discrimination as the rapid repetition 
of "truly rural" is in our time. Another had beheld him, 
incoherent in speech and uncertain of gait, come to anchor 
on a bed, where essaying to express his sentiments, he " faltered 
soe sore" that he failed to make himself understood. A 
fellow-lodger also reveals the little fact that he had been 
obliged to call in aid to get Mr. Jackson to his couch, when, 
either from choice or necessity, he had exchanged the con- 



Digitized by 



Google 



132 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

ventional support of a chair for the floor. And Mr. Richard 
Garthwaite, the usher — *'unkindest cut of all!" — relates his 
dismissal by Mr. Jackson, when the latter shut up the School 
for three months and rested on his oars all that time. 

These testimonies all refer to incidents which took place 
previously to Mr. Jackson's return with flying colours from 
before the Triers, at Whitehall. Either, then, they had not 
been produced so fully on that occasion, or he must have 
convinced his inquisitors of the sincerity of his repentance. 
They are the depositions of Sedbergh people. What follows 
is the evidence of the Garsdale contingent. Mr. Jackson had 
deserted his cure at Garsdale for three months, just as he 
had left his school at Sedbergh for a like period. No doubt 
he wanted a complete rest, and was convinced of the useless- 
ness of doing things by halves. But worse than this, he had, 
on one particular Lord's Day, lighted at the alehouse in 
Garsdale, and sent word to his congregation that he was so 
wet that he could not preach. The warmth of mine hostess' 
fire, with congenial company and good home-brewed combined, 
were powerful dissuasives from further exertion, and the dis- 
appointed congregation had to be sent empty away. 

How is Mr. Jackson to face these circumstantial charges ? 
He produced, in the first place, a testimonial from the Mayor 
of Kendal, and two others, that they had heard him preach 
there, and considered him an able minister, and that they had 
never known or heard of his being guilty of the offences 
imputed to him. Secondly, he had friends from Garsdale and 
Grisedale, to testify that during a ministry of seven years 
among them, a year and a half of which he had lived in the 
dale, they had never known him to be a frequenter of 
alehouses, or heard of his being accounted intemperate. 
There must have been pretty hard swearing somewhere; but 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 133 

it is observable that no witnesses are produced to disprove 
the allegations respecting his conduct at Sedbergh. He does, 
however, send a written answer in his own behalf, in which 
he deals with the charges in order. As to the assertion of 
incompetence, he points to the college testimonial before 
referred to; and since his adversaries seem so well satisfied 
with the attainments of his predecessors, he will venture a 
comparison of his own learning and piety with theirs, in an 
investigation before the authorities of St. John's College, and 
if worsted, will relinquish his right and title, save only for his 
arrears. When he discharged Richard Garthwaite, clerk, 
"because he turned apostate proselyte," and had "introduced 
" the observation of the holy days with their eves, which I had 
"abolished and brought to the Parliament order," he did not 
send the scholars away, but appointed a person to teach them 
during his absence. He is no haunter of alehouses, not he; 
and his renunciation of the evil society of his opponents is 
that which irritates them above everything. That little episode 
of being drunk on the Sabbath, about which they make so 
much ado, did not occur on the Sabbath Day, and it is open 
to explanation. It was, on his part, nothing more than a case 
of involuntary acquiescence; for "that barbarous ruffian, 
George Otway," who lived at Lofthouse, and was the brother 
of Mr. John Otway, was drinking with his accomplices at the 
alehouse where the Head Master lodged, and was determined 
to have his company again after he had arranged for the 
payment of his shot, and had retired to bed peaceably. Up 
came Otway before ever his chamber-door could be pinned, and 
haled him downstairs again ; and Mr. Jackson, having a sore 
leg, and being in peril of his life among "such a crew of 
villains," was constrained to imbibe so much liquor as did 
stupefy him. "God did by this sink my spirit with such 



Digitized by 



Google 



134 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

"repentance ever since, both for this and other failings, that 
" through the grace of Christ I am, in a measure, rejoiced to 
'*hear myself so injuriously railed at and reproached for the 
" relicks of the old man yet remaining in me." Bravo, Richard ! 
— only you appear to have forgotten that several of the wit- 
nesses depose to your having been " distempered with drink " 
at dates subsequent to this seemly contrition. Master Jackson 
reserves his best card to the end, and now plays it in an 
appeal to the political prejudices of his judges, when he 
reminds them that they cannot hurt him and help his adver- 
saries, unless they " abandon all sound principles upon which 
"honest and godly patriots ingaged in judgment and con- 
" science in that great controversie against the late Eling," 
and expose to reproach and prejudice " such as sincerely close 
" with the Government, in favour of the few and wilde fellows 
"who adhere to those old principles and that cursed interest 
" which they cannot renounce." But it was all in vain. Even 
Cromwell's commissioners for ejecting scandalous ministers 
and schoolmasters in the West Riding must yield to over- 
whelming evidence against their political sympathisers. On 
March 20, 1655, the possessions of the School were sequestered, 
and certain of the Governors (to wit, John Otway, Esq.; John 
Cowper, gentleman ; Adam Sawer, Richard Holme, John Bland, 
Anthony Willan, Thomas Blaiklinge, and James Hebblethwaite, 
or any three of them) were empowered to engage a tempo- 
rary master, until a regular appointment could be made. 

It may seem, at first sight, ungracious to spend so many 
words on. the pothouse proclivities of a former Head Master; 
but I am persuaded that the story affords interesting glimpses 
of the state of society at Sedbergh in the first half of the 
seventeenth century, as well as shows how the School fared 
at a critical period of English history. It may be noted that 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 35 

while the School was so directly affected by the Common- 
wealth unsettlement, the Church, on the other hand, shows no 
signs of disturbance. 

Although Mr. Jackson had been worsted in the decisive 
pitched battle, he was still able, for several years, to keep up 
the semblance of warfare on the subject of his arrears, until 
at length he drops into obscurity; and we hear that in 1675, 
twenty years after the sequestration, the Governors relented 
and paid to his widow, Elizabeth Jackson, the sum of ;£i3i — 
a somewhat tardy acknowledgment of the schoolmaster's claim, 
which it is to be hoped was not too late to smooth the pillow 
of his relict's declining years. 

Possibly the Governors now thought it expedient to econ- 
omize. At any rate they paid to a Mr. Gibson, the interim 
master, the modest salary of £20, minus some shillings, for 
officiating in the school from April, 1656, to May, 1657. In 
the latter year the Commissioners and the College jointly 
appointed Mr. James Buchanan to the office of Head Master. 
In about a twelvemonth after his arrival he married Emma 
Burton, at Sedbergh, but his short reign is barren of events of 
public interest. He was followed, in 1660, by Mr. Edward Fell, 
M.A., who married Ann Bland in 1669, and resided at Castley. 
He died in 1674, leaving by his will £$, the interest to be used 
in the purchase of a Latin Dictionary, from time to time, for 
the use of the School — Littleton's and the Cambridge Diction- 
aries being, as we find, the favoured authorities at Sedbergh 
in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Into what prefer- 
able channel of usefulness the dictionary-money was event- 
ually diverted I do not know; and now that such compilations 
meet us at every turn, probably no one but a bibliomaniac 
would care to inquire. It was no doubt a fortuitous return to 
an older usage when, in my time, a Head Master exceptionally 



Digitized by 



Google 



136 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

tolerant of juvenile eccentricity, would now and then call for a 
dictionary to clear up the biography of some more than usually 
unmanageable word. One of the boys possessed a Facciolati 
of formidable dimensions, and on such occasions the ponderous 
tome was always escorted to the chair of authority by at least 
a quaternion of tyros. These elaborately solemn processions 
were always a pleasant variation of the ordinary routine, and 
the dictionary had many admirers besides the minority who 
were privileged to consult its pages. 

But it behoves me to remember that I am still in the 
seventeenth century, and I return to Mr. Edward Fell. On 
his decease the College appointed one Mr. Cox, who, however, 
made no acquaintance with Sedbergh, but declined the prefer- 
ment within a month. The College must then have been 
embarrassed in their selection, for at the end of six weeks 
none had been made ; and the Governors, imder the authority 
of the clause in the charter for such case made and provided, 
took the matter into their own hands, and with the sanction 
of the Bishop, appointed a Master for themselves. They 
made choice of Posthumus Wharton, M.A., a member of the 
ducal family of Wharton, with the halo of aristocracy about 
his head. I have already commented — somewhat unfavourably, 
I fear — on the quality of his Latin verses. He was a good 
Master, notwithstanding, and raised the reputation of the 
School considerably. He was an eligible match, and espoused 
the Governors' relations freely: (i) Barbara Comey, (2) Mary 
Otway, (3) Margaret Cowper. As the nominee of the Governors, 
and their kinsman by multiplicity of matrimonial alliances, 
it would be strange if his connection with the School had 
been otherwise than peaceful and pleasant. No longer a 
household divided against itself, as in the days of Richard 
Jackson, of unhappy memory, Governors and Master could 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 



137 



now defend their distant possessions by united action. Did 
they not fight Sir Thomas Hodgson, Knight, for 13^. 4^., which 
they claimed of him as a tenant in their manor of Bramwith 
Woodhouse ? And did they not also, at great expense, bring 
to book one Wilfrid Lawson, who refused to pay a reasonable 
fine and rent for school-land at Ilkley ? 

Mr. Wharton resided at Thorns, and his long reign of 
thirty-two years was terminated by resignation in 1706. A 
shadowy Mr. Dwyer then passes before us and rules the 
School for three years, until 1709, when he was succeeded by 
Dr. Samuel Saunders, who married Margaret, daughter of 
Mr. Posthumus Wharton aforesaid. He was Vicar of Welton 
and Hutton-Bushel, as well as Master of Sedbergh School, 
and, in this state of comfortable plurality, just equalled his 
father-in-law in the years of his mastership. During his time 
the School must have been rebuilt in the classical style of 




The Old Grammar School, Sedbergh. 



Digitized by 



Google 



138 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

the Georges, as the date over the elegant western doorway is 
1 7 16. It is a pity we have no sketch or description of the 
former building, which, one thinks, must have retained some 
interesting features of the early, if not of the earliest, stages 
of the institution. There is in the School Museum one of 
"Kip's Views" — a print (about 17 10) of a design for a School 
at Sedbergh. It is unlike the present building, and the plan 
is for a School and a Master's House attached, and was most 
likely a design made for the new School, but not accepted. 

Dr. Saunders died November ist, 1741, aged fifty-eight, as 
his monument in the church relates; and after a few months 
interregnum, on the 25th of March, 1742 — the first day of the 
new year, as official reckoning then was — arrived Mr. William 
Broxholme, the next Master. He grossly neglected his charge, 
and as he shut himself up in his chamber, the Governors 
had serious thoughts of abridging his income. They even 
took counsel's opinion on the point ; but as it was clear that all 
profits of the school possessions belonged to the Master, they 
came to the conclusion that it would be dangerous to meddle ; 
so they ' squared ' the recluse, and his death, in the early part 
of 1746, relieved them from the apprehension of further 
difficulties. 

Mr. Wynne Bateman (afterwards D.D.) had just taken to 
wife Rachel, younger daughter of Samuel Saunders, D.D.; 
and if it was practicable for the father-in-law to be Vicar of 
remote Welton and Hutton-Bushel, as well as Master of the 
School, at one and the same time, much more must it have been 
practicable for the son-in-law to be Vicar of Sedbergh and 
Master of the School too. So the arrangement was tried for 
eight years, until a division of labour, in 1754, made John 
Meryett vicar, and confined Wynne Bateman to his scholastic 
-duties solely. He surpassed all his predecessors, since the 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 139 

first Master of the Edwardian foundation, in the duration of 
his office, having reigned thirty-six years, and no doubt dis- 
seminated much useful, as well as some useless, knowledge in 
that time. We learn from the Governors' papers that they 
found him reluctant to repair his School ; but we may forgive 
a little hesitation on this score when we do not find that 
anything else unfavourable to his reputation has been alleged 
against him. He died May 12th, 1782, aged sixty-eight — 
Rachel, his widow, holding over to the next century (1802), 
and reversing the figures of her husband's age to denote her 
own. 

Under Dr. Bateman's successor, the Rev. Christopher Hull, 
the School got on the down-grade once more. He was Third 
Wrangler in 1765, and, therefore, he may be assumed to have 
been capable of conducting his pupils through the nK)st 
bewildering of numerical labyrinths. But he was not an all- 
round man; and the Governors became so convinced that 
the decline of the School was owing to his incompetence to 
teach Latin and Greek, that they suggested to him the 
propriety of his giving ;^ioo to another Master and having 
nothing to do with the School himself; and if he refused this 
advice, then he- would have to see what he would see. But 
he held on to the end, in the dual capacity of Rector of 
Aspeden, in Hertfordshire, and Master of the Grammar School 
at Sedbergh, and died (says his monument in the church) 
January 3rd, 1799, ^^ ^he fifty-ninth year of his age. 

There is one thing, however, for which the School was 
greatly indebted to Mr. Hull, and that is, for being the means 
of obtaining a suitable house for the Master to live in. The 
only definite provision for this purpose had been the diminutive 
tenement of Lofthouse, which, though not beneath the require- 
ments of Mr. George Otway, in the seventeenth century, or 



Digitized by 



Google 



140 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



those of Mr. Thomas Currer, attorney-at-law, in the eighteenth, 
was scarcely elastic enough for a family and boarders. It 
was convenient to let this house with the land on which it 
stood, and the Master had to shift for himself. At one time 
we have seen him content with an alehouse; at another, 
preferring the salubrious heights of Castley; and again, on 
different occasions, descending to the agreeable privacy and 
goodly heritage of Thorns. But Mr. Hull had set his mind 
on having a fixed abode, and a fixed abode he succeeded in 
getting. Near the west end of the town there had formerly 
stood a humble thatched hostelry, known as the Cross Keys, 







on the site of which Mr. James Waidson had erected a 
commodious dwelling-house, with outbuildings and garden 
complete. After these had changed hands a few times, they 
became the property of Mr. Hull, who mortgaged an estate 
to secure them; and upon his decease the College, the 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 141 

Governors, and the Master agreed to acquire them in per- 
petuity of the next purchaser in exchange for Sedbergh Ing, 
a parcel of school-land in the parish of Halifax. The house 
was enlarged in the time of Mr. Evans, and since; and it is 
now in the charge of one of the house-masters — in all proba- 
bility, as comfortable and convenient a structure as the 
palatial embellishments which have cropped up in later years. 
The Rev. William Stevens, Fifteenth Wrangler in 1 791, so 
far from checking the downward course of the School, would 
seem to have accelerated it. Perhaps the comfortable Master's 
house was a snare to him, for in no long time he dispensed 
with an usher, locked up the School for years together, and 
taught the poor remnant of scholars — some ten at the utmost, 
and most of them boarders — at his own fireside. It is not 
stated whether he made his appearance in dressing-gown and 
slippers, but the probability is that these ingredients of true 
happiness would not always be wanting. Professor Sedgwick, 
however, who was under his rule, speaks of him as "an 
excellent scholar, and a good social and domestic man." 
Mr. Stevens had been a chaplain, for a time, in the Royal 
Navy, and had even been present at Lord Howe^s victory off 
Cape St. Vincent, in 1794; and it is surmised that his sea- 
faring experiences would be specially delectable to the youth- 
ful ear, and render the belligerent Master somewhat of a hero 
to the imagination of his admiring ten. The distracted 
Governors had recourse to their usual expedient in seasons 
of perplexity. They obtained counsel's opinion; they even 
brought down on the domesticated pedagogue two Fellows 
of St. John's, the Charity Commissioners, and the Bishop of 
Chester ; but he died, as he had lived. Master of the Grammar 
School. He departed this life a few months after his wife, 
on November 9th, 181 9, aged fifty years; and he is the only 



Digitized by 



Google 



142 SEDBERGH, GARSDAJLE, AND DENT. 

one of the Masters whose monument — a simple headstone — 
will be found on the outside of the church. 

It was in his time that Dr. Whitaker wrote his History 
of Richmondshire ; and no account of the School would be 
complete without the passage in which he speaks of it. It 
is a characteristic one, and in the Doctor's best style. 

** By a member of St. John's College, in Cambridge/' he says, **Sedberg 
**can scarcely be visited without an affectionate remembrance of its con- 
** nexion with that venerable foundation. The grammar-school of this place, 
" in the patronage of that society, and farther connected with it by pro- 
**prietary foundation, has long flourished under the erudition of many 
*' succeeding masters, and produced many sound and excellent scholars. 
**With the University of Cambridge, since its [the School's] late declension 
**as a classical seminary, it has formed a temporary and general connexion, 
** in consequence of the superior talents of Mr. Dawson as a teacher of 
** mathematics. Still I could, for the sake of the college, and for that of 
"the living and of the dead, which this seminary has sent forth to adorn 
'* both that and other colleges, be glad to hail this place as classic ground; 
**but in the taste and fashion of education, as well as all other things, 
*' there are revolutions which interest itself cannot control. Forgetting, 
** therefore, what it is, and recalling from more distant times the names 
** of both the Barwicks, let me next commemorate either the living or the 
** recently departed ornaments of this seminary — Dr. George Mason, late 
"Bishop of Man; Dr. Walker King, now Bishop of Rochester; Sir Isaac 
** Pennington, late Professor of Physic at Cambridge ; Dr. Thomas Kipling, 
"Dean of Peterborough; Dr. William Cookson, Canon of Windsor; Mr. 
"Thomas Starkie, late Fellow of St. John's, and now Vicar of Blackburn, 
"the Senior Wrangler of his year; the witty and elegant Thomas Wilson, 
"B.D.; and above all. Dr. William Craven, Master of St. John's College, 
"who to the attainments of a profound scholar added the humility of a 
"saint, and to the manners of a gentleman the simplicity of a child." 

This list of distinguished Old Sedberghians might be con- 
siderably extended. I content myself with adding a few names 
only, the first three being those of eminent physicians : — 

John Fothergill — of Quaker parentage, bom at Carr End, 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 143 

near Richmond, in 17 12. His extensive practice in London, 
estimated at ;^8,ooo a year, enabled him to amass a large 
fortune, which he liberally used in the furtherance of benev- 
olent projects. He was the principal founder of Ackworth 
School, for when the building and land had been acquired 
by subscription, he furnished the institution with a permanent 
endowment by his will. He died in 1780, and has been accorded 
a niche among Hartley Coleridge's "Northern Worthies." 

Anthony Fothergill — a native, most probably, of Raven- 
stonedale, and educated at Sedbergh. He also acquired wealth 
by successful practice at Bath. He wrote five volumes of 
papers on medical subjects. In 1803, having retired from his 
profession, he visited America, where he resided until differences 
with the mothet-country led him to return. Born 1732, died 
1813. A notice of his life will be found in Atkinson's 
"Worthies of Westmorland."* 

Robert Willan — born at the Hill, near the town of Sed- 
bergh, in 1757; died at Madeira, in 1812. He was educated 
under Dr. Bateman, and Dawson the mathematician, and was 
a physician of considerable reputation in London. A pros- 
pectus, still extant, shows that in 1785 he had projected an 
academy at Castley, near Sedbergh, where, after the payment 
of an entrance-fee of one guinea, youths might be boarded 
and educated for the moderate sum of ;^ 14 a year. Perhaps 
the School did not answer expectations at this rate, and 
fortune had better things in store for the young M.D.t He 

* See also, in the same authority, the notices of Robert Dawson (i 589-1 643), Bishop 
of Qonfert; Anthony Askew, M.D.,F.R.S. (1722-1740), a learned collector of books 
and MSB., the sale of whose library lasted twenty days ; Sir Alan Chambre, Knight 
( 1 740-1 823), a Justice of the Court of Common Pleas, whose mother was a Morland 
of Capplethwaite ; and Edward Holme, M.D. (i 770-1847), president of several learned 
associations, and one of the founders of the Chetham Society. 

fThe prospectus is referred to in the ** Transactions of the Cumberland and West- 
morland Archaeological Society," xi. 384. 



Digitized by 



Google 



144 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

was an author of medical and other books ; and his " List of 
Words used in the Mountainous District of the West Riding " 
has been recently edited under the auspices of the English 
Dialect Society. 

We have also the honour of reckoning among our alumni 
Dr. John Hymers, Second Wrangler in 1826, and Fellow and 
Tutor of St. John's College, whose mathematical text-books 
were in much repute among a past generation of students. 
He died at the rectory of Brandesburton, in 1887, leaving the 
residue of his real and personal estate for the endowment of 
a grammar-school at Hull. This bequest, amounting to the 
princely sum of ;^ 200,000, made shipwreck on the statutes of 
mortmain; but the heir-at-law, desirous of giving effect to 
the wishes of his brother, generously allowed ;^50,ooo of the 
personalty to be devoted to the purpose intended, and the 
Hymers College is now. an accomplished fact. 

Dr. James Inman, Dr. Haygarth, and Professor Sedgwick — 
all native celebrities — I reserve for the chapters on Garsdale 
and Dent ; but I may mention as belonging to a more recent 
date, Dr. Cookson, Master of Peterhouse; Governor Eyre, 
whose vigorous action in Jamaica, however interpreted, cannot 
detract from his laurels as an Australian explorer; and the 
Rev. J. M. Wilson, Senior Wrangler in 1859, now Archdeacon 
of Manchester, but, as yet, better known as the able and 
energetic Head Master of Clifton College. 

Mr. Stevens was followed in the mastership of Sedbergh 
School by the Rev. Henry Wilkinson, Second Wrangler and 
Fellow of his College. He succeeded in reviving the drooping 
vitality of the School, and at his death, in 1838, left above 
one hundred scholars as a proof of his industry and reputation 
as a teacher. Nemini non honoratus — imiversally respected—- 
is the verdict of the commemorative tablet in the church; 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 45 

from which, also, we learn that he died in the assiduous dis- 
charge of his duties and in the prime of life, at the age of 
forty-six. 

During the interval between the death of Mr. Wilkinson 
and the arrival of his successor, the duties of a Head Master 
were temporarily discharged by that erratic genius, Hartley 
Coleridge, the son of a famous sire, and himself a prose writer 
of a delicate humour and sparkling fancy, and a tender and 
graceful poet. The Rev. Isaac Green had been Second Master 
of the School and Curate and Incumbent of Howgill seven 
years when the death of his chief occurred. As Master of the 
Ambleside Grammar School previously, he had an acquaintance 
with the families of De Quincey, Wordsworth, and Coleridge ; 
and, in 1837, he had occasion to have recourse to the assistance 
of his old friend Hartley Coleridge, at Sedbergh, for several 
months. Hartley acquitted himself so satisfactorily, on this 
occasion, as to justify his appointment as temporary Head 
Master in the following year, from March to the midsummer 
holidays. It is well known that nature never intended poor 
Hartley for a martinet, and his sensitive temperament left 
him powerless in the presence of unruly boys. Wordsworth 
had addressed him, at the age of six, in language of remark- 
able presentiment — 

*' O blessed Vision ! happy Child ! 
Thou art so exquisitely wild, 
I think of thee with many fears 
For what may be thy lot in future years" — 

and as he grew up, his impatience of restraint, and a certain 
congenital infirmity of will, cut him off from the calculable 
consistencies of ordinary men. His diminutive stature and 
singular appearance, too, were serious drawbacks to the man- 
agement of unstudious youths, and he had nothing of the 
S 



Digitized by 



Google 



146 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

typical schoolmaster about him, except the power of imparting 
knowledge. Under these circumstances it is pleasing to record 
that his life at Sedbergh was such as he could look back 
upon with unusual satisfaction. He even found among his 
pupils one warm personal friend,* from whose interesting 
recollections of Hartley's manner of instruction in Mr. Green's 
parlour, and elsewhere, I quote a few sentences : — 

•* He was dressed in black, his hair, just touched with grey, fell in thick 
*' waves down his back, and he had a frilled shirt on; and there was a 
** sort of autumnal ripeness and brightness about him. His shrill voice, and 
" his quick authoritative * right ! right ! ' and the chuckle with which he trans- 
** lated * rerum repetundarum ' as * peculation, a very common vice in governors 
" of all ages,* after which he took a turn round the sofa — all struck me amaz- 
"ingly; his readiness astonished us all, and even himself, as he afterwards 
** told me ; for during the time that he was at the School, he never had to 
"use a Dictionary once, though we read Dalzell's selections from Aristotle 
**and Longinus and several plays of Sophocles. While acting as second 
"master [/>. on his first visit to Sedbergh], he seldom occupied the master's 
"desk, but sat among the boys on one of the school benches. He very 
" seldom came to school in a morning, never till about eleven, and in the 
"afternoon about an hour after we had begun. I never knew the least 
"liberty taken with him, though he was kinder and more familiar than was 
"the fashion with masters. His translations were remarkably vivid; of 
** fLv/i^6i, fioyt^ui 'toiling and moiling;' and of some ship or other in the 
" Philoctetes, which he pronounced to be 'scudding under main-top sails/ 
"our conceptions became intelligible." 

Here we have the brighter aspect of Hartley's nature 
presented to us, but sometimes the seamy side — an invincible 
propensity to strong waters, which no one could deplore more 
than himself— came uppermost too. The Rev. John Milner, 
of Middleton-in-Teesdale, writes to me : — 



• The Rev. Thomas Blackburn. Sec the Memoir prefixed to Moxon*s edition of 
Hartley Coleridge's Poems (1851), pp. cxv. and cxxxv. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 47 

*' I was at Sedbergh when Mr. Wilkinson died, and read the Prometheus 
"with Hartley Coleridge, whose valuable renderings I have often since looked 
**at. *Lile Hartley' lived with Green while he was doing duty as a tem- 
**porary Head Master. Green had to look sharply after him, and limited 
**him to one glass of whiskey at nights; but one night when Green had 
"one of his bilious attacks, he left him with the whiskey bottle, and the 
"result was disastrous. Hartley fell and damaged the bridge of his nose 
"over the fender, and slightly blackened both eyes, but he turned up as 
"usual the next morning, although looking a little seedy." 

One more recollection of Hartley Coleridge 1 add, by kind 
permission of Messrs. Chapman & Hall, from the Life of the 
Right Hon. W. E. Forster, by T. Wemyss Reid. It describes 
the meeting of two remarkable men in the street of Sedbergh, 
and is contained in a letter written by Mr. Forster, in 1838, 
apparently to his father, and at a time when the evidences of 
the writer s Quaker up-bringing were stronger than at a 
later date. 

"I got back to Sedbergh," writes Mr. Forster, "about five on third 
"day. Hearing from Kendal that Hartley Coleridge was staying at Sed- 
"bergh, I wrote a note to him, asking him to take tea with me as Sarah 

"Fox's relation The next day was rainy, and most dull was the 

"prospect, but happily I met H. C. in the street, and he spent the day with 
" me, and read me several of his unpublished sonnets. It was such an 
"intellectual treat as I never had before. He is a strange compound of 
"eccentricity, immense power of reasoning and imagination, amiability, 
" simplicity, and utter want of self-command. I should think his conver- 
" sation was equal to his father's — in fact, those who know him think it to 
"be so. I never heard anything like it. But — poor fellow — I had the 
"greatest difficulty to keep him sober. But I did so. Coleridge is fat, 
"one-sided, about 5ft. high, eyes dark, hair grey or black. He is a most 
"strange-looking mortal, and worth observing if thou meets him in the 
"street." 

Mr. Green, who was the means of bringing Hartley Cole- 
ridge into connection with Sedbergh School, demands a few 
more words. He was Second Master from 1831 to 1869, a 



Digitized by 



Google 



148 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

period of thirty-eight years, and taught under three Head 
Masters — Wilkinson, Evans, and Day. His tall, dignified form 
contrasted observably with the smaller and lither figure of 
Evans. He grounded his pupils thoroughly in the elementary 
stages of the classics; and his somewhat stern features, 
suggestive of the imperative mood, were no doubt owing to 
protracted endeavours to push inert intellects up the ladder 
of grammatical lore. At heart, however, and off duty, he was 
essentially kind; and when his constitutional shyness had been 
overcome and intimacy established, the current of his discourse 
would sometimes thaw genially into retrospective anecdote 
and subdued laughter. He was fond of farming, and was 
esteemed a good amateur judge of cattle. I have pleasant 
recollections of driving with him behind a sure-footed ancient 
quadruped, to his cure in Howgill. Here, through his exer- 
tions, was built the prettily-situated Chapel which he served 
till within a few years of his death, which occurred on the 
25th of September, 1875, in the seventy-second year of his 
age. He was twice married, and now rests in the quiet little 
churchyard of Grasmere, beside the two partners of his joys 
and sorrows — Frances [nie Kennedy), and Caroline Bella, 
daughter of Julius Cassar Ibbetson, **an artist eminent for 
his taste and skill in painting rustic figures, cattle, and 
rural scenery," as his tombstone in Masham churchyard quite 
truthfully declares. 

The archididascalic succession has been interrupted — not 
unnecessarily I trust — by these notices of Coleridge and Green. 
I now revert to the death of Mr. Wilkinson and the appoint- 
ment of the Rev. J. H. Evans, M.A., in 1838. He graduated 
in 1828 as Third Wrangler and Tenth in the First Class of 
the Classical Tripos. His death at Southport, in 1880, seems a 
quite recent event; but owing to failure of health, he had 



Digitized by 



Google 




Oelnr^or) Ueoip, pieuS^ill jSj^jaqc. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 49 

long before resigned the mastership of the School, where he 
laboured devotedly for twenty- three years. In 1861 he with- 
drew from active life, and was presented by the parishioners 
with a silver salver, indicative of the esteem in which he was 
held by all classes. Old pupils had previously subscribed for 
a handsome testimonial of some hundreds of pounds, which 
he applied, in 1858, to the erection of a Market House and 
Reading Room for the use of the inhabitants generally. 

The unanimity with which middle-aged Sedberghians regard 
the School as having reached the high-water mark of its 
reputation under his charge can hardly be mistaken ; and 
the number of men of light and leading — members of Parlia- 
ment, church dignitaries, colonial judges, members of the bar, 
masters of schools, and others — who, in a great measure, owe 
their success in life to his excellent training, is truly astonish- 
ing. As a disciplinarian he was unsurpassed, and boys soon 
made up their minds that he was not to be trifled with. At 
the same time he was a terror only to evil-doers, and industry 
and earnestness were sure of his approbation. He appeared 
to have no favourites, but to render to all alike the just 
recompense of their individual merits ; and it was the solidity 
and consistency of his character, his downright integrity and 
fairness, no less than the accuracy and extent of his learning, 
which gained for him the confidence and respect of his pupils, 
and the veneration of their riper years. 

The curriculum of the School, as contrasted with the mul- 
tiplicity of present-day requirements, would no doubt be 
regarded as deplorably meagre. Classics and mathematics were 
all in all. There was no modern side to divide our interests, 
and there were no "-ologies" to distract our aims. English 
History was dispensed from the most repellent of text-books, 
and in morsels so fragmentary and statistical that no com- 



Digitized by 



Google 



I50 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

prehensive grasp of the subject was established, and few 
results of permanent value remained. Of modem Geography I 
suppose we must have learnt something, though I do not 
remember what. French and Drawing were recognised as 
ornamental specialties, which, in deference to modem demands, 
it might be advisable for some to acquire; and peripatetics 
from Kendal and Lancaster, alternating with an authorised 
hair-cutter, paid occasional visits to ensure the requisite facility 
of pencil and tongue. English Literature, I fear, was abandoned 
to the uncovenanted mercies of spontaneous enterprise ; and 
even the classics were read without much appreciation of 
them as the choicest products of superior minds. Verbal 
criticism, syntactical precision, exact translation, pretty nearly 
exhausted our efforts. Latin and Greek verses were much in 
vogue, and even the most prosaic of minds attained to some 
knowledge of the mechanism of poetry. I remember one 
occasion when a boy, who had never shown the slightest indi- 
cation of a talent for original composition, was recountmg to 
his companions the depredations of a fox among his father's 
geese. Warming with the high theme of Reynard's atrocities, 
suddenly, and to the manifest amazement of all, he plumped 
into an impromptu descriptive pentameter of unusual vigour : 

" Pinguis erat vulpesy pinguior anser eraty 

This I always regarded as a special inspiration of the genttis 
lociy for there came no more fully developed lines from the 
same quarter. The traditions of the School were essentially 
classical, but the science of numbers was held in almost equal 
repute, and some admirable mathematicians were turned out 
by Evans. It is no small testimony to the value of the old 
grammar-school course of classics and mathematics, mathe- 
matics and classics, as a mental discipline, that so many 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 15 I 

youths fed almost exclusively on this diet should have shown 
themselves able at the universities, and in after life, to assimi- 
late all kinds of newer material with ease and success. 

We got through a fair proportion of work, and we enjoyed 
our play. The smallness of our numbers rendered any kind 
of compulsory recreation unnecessary; and we played cricket 
and football in their seasons, or we abstained from playing 
them, very much as we liked. There was no marked antago- 
nism between boarders and day-boys ; and, indeed, the latter 
were numerous enough, and sufficiently conscious of the 
superiority of their title to the advantages of the School, to 
hold their own against any manifestation of conceited exclu- 
siveness. 'Grappling' for trout, in the remote becks of 
Cautley and HowgiU, was a favourite employment on fine 
half-holidays; and we returned with sharpened appetites to 
regale ourselves on our * catches' at our respective abodes, 
which were not restricted to masters' houses, but might be 
wherever the occupiers were respectable and desirous of 
catering for us. If our regular cook was obdurate and would 
not yield to entreaty, we could generally prevail upon 
"mother" Dilworth or her successor, mother Hornby, at the 
sweet-shop, to prepare for us savoury morsels. We enjoyed 
great freedom of action ; we were treated with much confidence 
by Evans, and I am happy to say we rarely abused his trust. 
Wrestling, which I suppose would now be deemed barbarous 
in comparison with the gentle amenities of football, was 
practised more commonly by all classes than at present. It 
was characteristically a north-country diversion, and it had 
associations with antiquity not unsuited to a classical school. 
It could be entered upon, and it could be abandoned, at a 
moment's notice; and many is the enjoyable bout we have 
had behind the old School, while waiting for the admonitory 



Digitized by 



Google 



152 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

creak of the door round the comer. We were learned in 
the technicalities of the art, and we took a genuine interest 
in the result of A's * back-hank' on B's * understandings;' and 
we knew that when X had caught his adversary fairly on 
the hip,* there was small chance of his reverting to perpen- 
dicularity in that round. But whether we stood triumphant 
or fell with a thud, or were mingled in the indistinguishable 
embrace of a * dog-fall,' our rivalry was always friendly and 
our amity unimpaired. 

In School we inherited a passion for wood-carving, as some 
of the panelling retained upstairs, and the old Governors' 
Table, will testify. Evans allowed every new boy to carve 
his name once with impunity, in case he should turn out a 
Bentley or a Newton, in which event his autoglyph would be 
interesting and valuable; but the use of the pocket-knife 
grows with what it feeds on, and I am afraid that when we 
were trotted oflF to church on saints' days, we did not always 
abstain from experimenting on the forms in a way that was 
not quite seemly. My own initials — I blush to confess it — 
cut through an inch plank, with a perseverance worthy of a 
better cause, must have remained for many years an evil 
example to those who came after. The restoration of the 
church swept out these reminders of the past; but rocks on 
Winder, and stones in the Rawthey, preserve more imperish- 
ably the names of some youthful aspirants to fame. 

We had one relic of a usage which had probably existed 
from the first commencement of Roger Lupton's School. It 



• This process of * cross-but tocking,* when successfully performed, usually consigns 
the victim of it to a decided fall ; and by a spiteful opponent it might easily be made 
the occasion of serious damage. 

** If I can catch him once uf^on the hip^ 
I will feed fat the ancient grudge I bear him," 
says revengeful Shylock of Antonio. — Merchant oj yeniee, i. 3. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 53 

was a complimentary ofiFering to the Masters — normally, a 
pound to the Head and ten shillings to the Second Master — 
on the morning of Shrove Tuesday. The payment was under- 
stood to be theoretically optional, but it was practically obli- 
gatory ; for every boy whose circumstances did not absolutely 
forbid it, felt it important to conform to the custom. We did 
not doubt that a transaction which was followed by a holiday 
must possess some inherent virtue, and we inquired no further. 
We now know that the custom was an unconscious survival 
of the Roman Catholic Shrovetide carnival, when youthful 
jollity indulged in its last frolic before entering on the 
disciplinary restraints of Lent. Schoolmasters were wont to 
provide fighting-cocks for the entertainment of their pupils, 
and * cock-penny' was the contribution given in return towards 
expenses. As early as 15 12, Dean Colet, the founder of St. 
Paul's School, humanely stipulated in his statutes that there 
should be no cock-fighting there. On the other hand, the 
ordinances in some places specified that the Master was to 
have the profits of all such cock-fights and potations as were 
commonly used in schools. When cock-fighting fell into dis- 
repute, we should have expected the payment to expire with 
it. Not so ; — there was a vitality about the pecuniary part of 
the arrangement which it was difficult to destroy; and it 
lingered on fitfully, until the new scheme, in 1874, put an end 
to it and to many other things at the same time. Thinking, 
however, that some tradition of cocking might have survived 
at Sedbergh as long as in most places, I had recourse to my 
counsellor, the oldest inhabitant,* from whom I learnt that 
sixty or seventy years ago there were often cock-fights got 

* John Leighton, who died July 13th, 1891, aged 87, having survived his 'diamond 
wedding* several years. He spent his whole life at Sedbergh, and with him departed 
an unrivalled store of memories of Old Sedbergh. 
T 



Digitized by 



Google 



154 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Up by the lads at the School. They took place in the Church 
Field close by. There was a man called Warbeck, who drove 
the coach between Sedbergh and Kirkby Stephen, who was 
* terribly' fond of the sport, and used to hunt up cocks 
from all quarters for the scholars. They were discreetly 
entered in his own name, but they really belonged to the 
boys, who fought many a main on the sly, besides being 
deeply interested spectators of the public demonstrations in 
the open air. This, of course, was before my time; and cock- 
penny is engraven on my recollection chiefly by the unique 
manner in which it was presented to the Second Master on 
one memorable occasion. I think there had been acute diflfer- 
ences of opinion between master and pupil on matters of life 
and conduct; and when cock-penny day came the impenitent 
disciple determined to present his preceptor with the accus- 
tomed love-token in as roundabout fashion as he could devise. 
For weeks that perversely ingenious youth had been storing 
up hal^ence, and at last, in good time, they amounted, all 
told, to the exact sum of ten shillings. Every one of these 
coins was scrupulously swathed in a separate paper, and the 
collective result enveloped in repeated coverings, until the 
parcel assumed the appearance of a package of tea, or of a 
bundle of tracts at the least. One of the earliest to lay his 
offering on the magisterial desk and athwart the imperious 
eye, was the perverse youth. He deposited his weighty 
package with an air of triumph, as much as to say. There, 
take your change out of that! The perplexed expression on 
the Master's visage was beautiful to contemplate, and his 
furtive glances at the mysterious packet were duly appreciated. 
We lingered long to witness the fate of this novel cock-penny, 
and we were delighted with the counterfeit presentment of 
calm indifference with which our "guide, philosopher, and 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 55 

friend" finally fixed his cargo under his arm and sailed 
majestically out of the School. 

We had an old Latin breaking-up song, handed down 
through successive generations of scholars. It requires a little 
study to master its conversational turns, and to supply an 
occasional ellipsis of some part of the verb *to be;' which 
done, the matter is seen to be quaint and the sentiments not 
inappropriate. It would be a gracefiil acknowledgment of 
the continuity of the School to reintroduce it in an extended 
form. With such effect as the Sedbergh School Musical 
Society would be capable of giving to it, I venture to predict 
that it would soon become exceedingly popular. It used to 
be sung on the last night of the *half' by the boarders in 
the Head Master's house, and they assembled in the Long 
Room, between supper and prayers, for this purpose. The 
Rev. G. Robinson, now Vicar of Ulgham, had the forethought 
to write it down, and I am indebted to his copy for the words : — 
** Omne bene, ! Quomodo vales, 

Sine poeni! ' M! sodalis? 



Tempus est ludendi; 
Absque morA 



Visne edere pomum? 
Si non vis, 



Venit hora Mirabilis — 

Libros deponendi. | Et nunc redire domum!" 

And now to proceed. The next and last Head Master under 
the old system was the Rev. H. G. Day, Third Wrangler and 
First Class-man in the Classical Tripos in 1854. The state of 
Mr. Evans's health for some time past had not been such as 
to make him anxious to increase the number of his boarders, 
and there would be about fifty scholars when his successor 
arrived, in 1861. These fifty soon showed signs of still ftirther 
diminution, for the new Master, though an excellent scholar 
and a man of unusual intellectual power, was not eminent as 
a disciplinarian — a circumstance which the boys were not 



Digitized by 



Google 



156 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

slow to discover and to take advantage of. He had a keen 
sense of humour, and was, I fear, an inveterate punster. 
However entertaining this propensity might be, it did not 
conduce to the furtherance of serious pursuits. When a 
farmer came to complain of the premature dece2ise of his 
gander from a stone flung by a thoughtless scholar, it was 
small consolation to be assured by the Master of his surprise 
that any of his boys should have been so stupid as to 
"kill a goosey^ a lark!*' — and when the assistance of the 
cane was invoked and it was about to descend, I have known 
the benefit of the correction appreciably diminished by the 
preliminary caution, ^^ Cave canem !" Practical jokes became 
prevalent — but I forbear to pursue the theme. The disappoint- 
ment of the inhabitants found audible expression in the ears 
of the Endowed Schools Commissioners, who, after careful 
inquiries, decided upon reorganizing the institution under a 
drastic scheme, according to which Mr. Day wais to retire 
with a liberal pension, and all things in ftiture were to be 
done in the latest style of perfection and in most admired 
good order. The scheme came into operation on the 20th of 
October, 1874, and the present writer, who happened to be 
sojourning at Sedbergh, kept the rickety machine in motion 
for a few months longer, until the Governors were in a position 
to start the new coach under the direction of an experienced 
driver. 

Before entering on the new era, it will be pertinent to 
remark that our review has been so engaged with the ups 
and downs of the School — the supineness of the Masters and 
the dissatisfaction of the Governors — that we may have 
done but scant justice to the good work which was no doubt 
frequently accomplished, but which found no record. Still it 
must be admitted that the local Governors deserve our best 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 1 57 

thanks for looking well after their trust; and but for their 
strenuous resistance upon occasion, the School must have sunk 
into a sinecure, and the Master into a useless drone, more often 
than they did. The patronage of the College did not always, 
or even frequently, issue in the selection of the most suitable 
man ; but we must not on that account infer that it was less 
successfiil than would have been the case with any similar body. 
The defect of the system was that a Master once appointed 
was practically irremovable; and when the revenues came in 
regularly, regardless of the work performed, there W2is not 
much incentive to exertion, after the enthusiasm of novelty 
had abated and the energies had begfun to flag. 

But all this is altered now. The appointment of the Head 
Master is transferred fi-om the College to the Governors, 
whose number has been increased fi-om twelve to fifteen, who 
need not be resident in the parish, and who are mostly 
representative of various interests in the North. The Head 
Master, who may be a graduate of any university in the 
British Empire, is not required to be a clergyman, his stipend 
is a fixed sum with capitation fees in addition, and his appoint- 
ment may be terminated, under certain conditions, at the dis- 
cretion of the Governors. The present Head Master is the 
first layman who has held the office, but the link of association 
with St. John's College has not yet been snapped. The object 
of the School is to supply a liberal education to boarders and 
day-boys, and the subjects of instruction are the old classical 
course supplemented by English, mathematics, geography, his- 
tory, science, modem languages, drawing, and singing. Certain 
entrance scholarships which the Governors have the power of 
granting, to be competed for by the sons of residents, serve 
to remind us that the School was originally intended more 
particularly for the benefit of natives of Sedbergh and the 



Digitized by 



Google 



158 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

neighbourhood. A Middle School— exclusively a day-school — 
is also provided for in the scheme; but the Grovemors have 
not yet seen their way to give effect to this part of the 
regulations, and the building is still in the clouds. 

For the first Head Master under the New Scheme the 
choice of the Governors fell upon the Rev. F. Heppenstall, 
M.A., who for ten years had been Head Master of the Perse 
Grammar School, Cambridge. Mr. Heppenstall had been a 
First Class-man in the Cl2issical Tripos, and in mathematics 
a Senior Optime ; and had subsequently won golden opinions 
as a patient and successful teacher. He began his duties 
here in September, 1875, and in the few years during which 
he was permitted to labour he ably started the School on its 
prosperous path. He was a good and amiable man, beloved 
alike by his scholars and by the people among whom he 
dwelt. He was cut off somewhat rapidly and unexpectedly, 
in 1879, 3.nd was interred at Newark; but a window in 
Sedbergh Church, erected to his memory by pupils and friends, 
commemorates his brief stay among us. By the substitution of 
Sedberghiam for Spartam he originated the motto " Sedberghiam 
nachcs es^ hanc exorna^' which has since been permanently 
adopted by the School. The interpretation may best be given 
in the words of Mr. Ainslie, one of the present assistant 
masters. It occurs in the first of the series of songs com- 
posed by him for the use of the School. 

"And lest you should the words mistake, — 

For fear of mistranslation, — 
I venture with your leave to make 

A lucid explanation: 
They mean in fact about as much 

As "You're a Sedbergh man, sir! 
And, being one, behave as such, 

And do the best you can, sirT' 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 



159 



Mr. H. G. Hart, M.A., the present Head Master, came into 
residence at the beginning of 1880, the Rev. J. W. Burrow 
having acted as temporary master during the vacancy. 

"Educated at Rugby*' — I quote from the literary organ of the School, 
The SedbergMatiy for April, 1880 — ''and at St. John's College, Cambridge, 
"he took his degree in 1866, being seventh in the First Class of the 
"Classical Tripos, and soon after was elected Fellow of his College. 
•* Directly after taking his degree he went as Classical Master to Hailey- 
'•bury College, where for several years he took part of the work of the 
"Sixth Form. On his marriage in 1873, with the daughter of Sir Henry 
"Lawrence, he went as Master to Harrow, from whence he came here.'* 




Digitized by 



Google 



l6o SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

How Sedbergh School has advanced by leaps and bounds 
under his able administration, until it ranks as the foremost 
classical school in the North of England, is well known to 
the educational world, and need not be recounted here. A 
School so liberally endowed and equipped enjoys the potenti- 
alities of unlimited progress. Supported by an influential 
body of Governors, of whom Mr. Francis S. Powell, M.P., is 
Chairman — an Old Sedberghian of the time of Evans, whose 
munificence to the School is unfailing — Mr. Hart has lacked 
no assistance towards the realisation of his ideal which money 
or goodwill could ensure. The result is partly seen in the 
noble array of buildings which has converted the little town 
of Sedbergh into a city of palaces, and has reduced the old 
School of the past to the subordinate position of a museum 
and library. The spacious New School on March Hill, 
occupying a situation of elevated and salubrious isolation, 
looks down on five masters' houses, four of them part of the 
School property, and one held on lease. A Gymnasium, the 
gift of Mr. Powell, and a Swimming Bath, presented by the 
late Mr. W. H. Wakefield, furnish healthful diversion to the 
robust, while a Sanatorium contributes to the convalescence 
of the temporarily infirm. There is a fine expanse of green 
sward for the cricket-ground, and the Church Field has recently 
been acquired at a cost of ;^3,50o for football. A new wooden 
Chapel — a temporary but convenient building — has been 
erected, to be replaced, doubtless at no very distant period, 
by a more substantial structure. Besides the Head Master 
there are fourteen assistants, of whom four are house-masters, 
and all, except the foreign-master, graduates of Oxford and 
Cambridge. The number of scholars, which was eighty-four 
when the present Head Master was appointed, is now one 
hundred and ninety-one; and though the new regulations 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE CHURCH AND THE GRAMMAR SCHOOL. 



l6l 



have not been in existence long enough for the production 
of national celebrities, the rapidly filling Honours Board at 
the School shows that many ex-pupils are well started on 
the road to distinction. I may mention as representatives 
of two different classes, Mr. R. A. Shepherd, Fellow of All 
Souls' College, and Mr. W. J. Woodhouse, of Queen's College, 
Oxford, a First Class-man both in Moderations and the Final 
Examination — the former a boarder, and the latter a day-boy- 




fir's mtr^Ar Jcligirl 



Besides the Lupton and Hebblethwaite Exhibitions at 
St. John's College, and a local Exhibition of varying value, 
the School has a claim, after Kirkby Lonsdale, to Bishop 
U 



Digitized by 



Google 



1 62 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Otway's Scholarship (1692) at Christ's College, Cambridge. 
It is also one of the schools privileged to compete for the 
valuable exhibitions founded by Lady Elizabeth Hastings 
{1739), and tenable at Queen's College, Oxford. Many old 
Sedberghians have had cause to bless the memory of Lady 
Betty, and many more, I doubt not, will do so in the time to 
■come. Certainly the present writer cannot make mention of 
her name — whether the more stately or the more familiar one — 
without a grateful sense of the value to him of her service- 
able bequest. 

We have now traced the School through its three stages and 
its three hundred and sixty-three years of existence. We have 
marked its origin as a chantry school; we have followed its 
long and chequered career as a royal foundation; and we 
have just witnessed it renewing its youth and starting afresh 
as a classical and general school of the first rank, fully 
equipped for the needs of this generation and of the genera- 
tions which are to follow. It has done good service to the 
country in the past — it has the promise of a glorious future 
before it — long may it flourish! 



Digitized by 



Google 




CHAPTER III. 

SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 



HE literary side of life at Sedbergh has 
mainly engaged our attention in the 
preceding chapter : we must now make 
acquaintance with the inhabitants 
generally. I propose, first of all, to 
give a few glimpses of the people and 
their circumstances in various relations 
in the past, and then to consider their 
character and condition now. 

We will start with the sanctuary-men in the fifteenth 
century. The Jewish "cities of refuge" furnished the model 
for regarding Christian churches as privileged places to which 
the criminal might flee for safety. In the middle ages all 
churches possessed the right of sanctuary ; but, in the North 
of England, Durham Cathedral and Beverley Minster rose to 
special pre-eminence in this respect ; and to the former, in 
particular, sped the culprit from our dales. A loud rat-tat 
from the grotesque knocker still hanging on the north door 
of the cathedral secured admission at any hour, and once 
inside the portal the fugitive had nothing to fear from the 
vengeance of his pursuers. The particulars of his crime — as, 
the time and place of its occurrence, and the nature of the in- 
strument with which it was committed — ^were solemnly entered 
in a book; and^ it is from this Register* that we gather the 



* Sanctuarium Dunelmgnse, one of the publications of the Surtees Society. 



Digitized by 



Google 



1 64 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

names of persons from Sedbergh, Garsdale, and Dent, who 
thus sought immunity. For thirty-seven days the privilege 
of sanctuary continued, and if during that time the offender 
could come to an agreement with his adversaries, he was at 
liberty to do so; but if not, then he had to appear before 
the coroner, confess his crime, and formally abjure the realm. 

From Sedbergh, in 1478, came Robert Richardson, labourer, 
and Edmund Moyser, tailor, admitting the slaying of Thomas 
Forster, near the Holme — the one with a club and the other 
with a sword, but, cis was alleged, in self-defence. Why the 
tailor should have been flourishing a sword rather than his 
goose or his lap-board, is not stated; but perhaps we may 
see in the circumstance an evidence of insecurity on the lonely 
road between Dent and Middleton. Next year came Thomas 
Wadeson, labourer. He had smitten John Wilson on the head 
with a club-staff, and John had succumbed to the shock within 
two days. In this year Sedbergh was much in evidence at 
the sanctuary ; for Oliver Branthwaite, Weardale, followed at 
short intervals by three accomplices, John Ridding and 
Richard Ridding, of "Birkshawe" — Birkhaw, or Birka, in 
Howgill — and Christopher Bowre, of Howgillrigg, put in their 
appearance. Branthwaite had used his dagger upon Thomas 
Lupton, at Sedbergh, and the others had aided and abetted 
in despatching him. This Thomas Lupton, it has been 
surmised, may have been the father of the famous Roger; 
and if so, the circumstance of his untimely death would no 
doubt weigh with Roger when he founded his chantry for 
the welfare of the souls of his kindred. 

Garsdale furnishes only one case, and it is one of cattle- 
lifting. In 1507, Gilbert Guy, of Garsdale, had slyly appro- 
priated twenty head of cattle, but not being able to put 
them in his pockets he had despatched his nephew, Thomas 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE, 1 65 

Outhwaite, with them to Grimsby, to get them converted into 
cash; but from there Thomas, alarmed at the prospect of 
imprisonment, made tracks for Durham. 

From Dent there are three cases. First, Robert Burton 
(1479) had been indicted for having had a hand in carrying 
off Henry Tatham's bull seventeen years before. He asserts 
his innocence, but takes sanctuary to avoid unpleasant con- 
sequences. Next, in i486, Robert Lonsdale and Christopher 
Lindsay claim immunity for the assassination of Laurence 
Falshed (Fawcett?) in a brawl near Hallgill, in Dent, some 
eight or nine years before. Probably the matter had been 
kept dark a long while, but it having now leaked out, they 
betake themselves to refuge. The instrument with which the 
deed was done is described as an *egelome,' but what that 
W21S nobody seems to know exactly, though an * edge ' or 
* edging loom' has been plausibly conjectured. Lastly, in 1514, 
comes Christopher Thistlethwaite, who, at the instigation of 
others, had broken into the house of John Metcalf, of Birk- 
rigg, in Wensleydale, by night, and had helped himself to 
goods and chattels of the value of ten marcs. 

The next matter which I have to notice is the remoteness 
of the district, and the consequent difficulty of intercourse with 
the outer world. In the Appendix to the Twelfth Report of 
the Historical Manuscripts Commission, there is mention of 
a Commission to inquire into " the late fall of Rothay Bridge," 
in 1584, and to take measures for the rebuilding of the same. 
Nothing seems to have been done until 1586, when Queen 
Elizabeth and her Council address themselves to the Com- 
missioners — Edward Tempest and seven other esquires. She 
marvels at their negligence in not carrying out her former 
orders, and straitly commands them to meet at Sedbergh and 
take the matter up in earnest. The place of meeting shows 



Digitized by 



Google 






1 66 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

that the Rawthey Bridge between Cautley and Ravenstone 
dale — ^Yorkshire and Westmorland — is the one referred to. 
Bridges were matters of urgency, and could not be allowed to 
remain in disrepair for long; but the condition of the roads 
generally, both about Sedbergh and elsewhere, was such as to 
be a serious impediment to travelling; and we are not surprised 
when, in 1624, we find the fi-eeholders of Sedbergh, on account 
of their "flFar remoteness and poore estates," successfully 
petitioning the Justices of Assizes for the Northern Circuit 
to be allowed to send two continuous representatives to York 
on their behalf, on all occasions when their presence is 
required, "whereby the rest may live in peace as formerly 
hath been provided for them." The roads in this district 
probably continued narrow and uneven quite down to the early 
part of the present century. Previously gangs of pack-horses 
sufficed to transport the merchandise of our dales along the 
lanes or tracks to Kendal. The old road over the Riggs gives 
us a good idea of the sort of communication between neigh- 
bouring valleys which passed muster before the days of turn- 
pikes, while the track across the breast of Winder,, and forward 
to Ravenstonedale, must have been a terrible trial to man 
and beast. A Turnpike Act was passed in 1761 for repairing 
and widening the roads from Kirkby Stephen High-Lane 
Head through Sedbergh to Greta Bridge, and from Bracken- 
Bar Gate, near Askrigg, through Sedbergh to Kendal; from 
which it is to be hoped that the roads down Cautley and 
Garsdale received some attention. The Act was revived and 
enlarged in 1784 and 1805, and repealed in 1826, to make way 
for more extended powers of diverting and altering the roads. 
Coaching gave a great impulse to road-repairing, and it is 
probably to the last-mentioned Act that we must ascribe the 
greatest improvements in our lines of transit. Looking at the 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 1 67 

Act of 1805 I find that it was then considered necessary to 
increase the tolls between Sedbergh and Kendal; and carts 
laden with "coals, cinders, wood, heath, furze, ling, turf and 
flaws, or sods, for fuel," were no longer to be exempt as formerly, 
but to pay a half-toll. An advertisement dated December 4th, 
1823, shows that the coaches began to run through Sed- 
bergh shortly before that time. It offers for sale "all that 
" old-established and well-accustomed freehold Inn called the 
"King's Arms" — now a private house and shop — "in the 
" centre of the town of Sedbergh, being the only Posting-house 
"there, and on the newly established road from Liverpool to 
"Newcastle." The two Lord Exmouths, old and young, orfe 
each way daily, were the coaches which ran between Lancaster 
and Newcastle. A connection with the York coach was also 
established for a short time from Sedbergh, through Garsdale, 
by Hawes. One can imagine the interest aroused here as 
the vehicles, with their spanking teams and freight of un- 
familiar faces, rattled up the narrow street. The oldest inhabi- 
tant says: — "I can well remember the first time the coach 
"came to Sedbergh. I was standing at Guldrey Bam door 
"when it passed the toll-bar." It was more than a nine 
days' wonder. The sleepy village had awoke from its normal 
torpor, and we can excuse the enthusiasm of the Curate with 
a predilection for horseflesh, who used to walk several miles 
to meet the coach for the pleasure of handling the reins 
and driving it into the town. The adventure of the late 
Mr. Dover is well known here. He had started in the coach 
from Sedbergh for Kirkby Stephen, about one o'clock on a 
dark winter morning, amid frost and snow. The insides con- 
sisted of a lady and gentleman and himself, and the outsides 
were the driver and another man. When the coach reached 
the Cross Keys, in Cautley, the driver and his companion 



Digitized by 



Google 



1 68 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

went into the house for a drop of something hot and strong 
to keep out the cold; but the horses, impatient of delay, 
started off at full trot. The landlord, hearing the noise, rushed 
out in his slippers and night-shirt, but soon gave up the 
unequal chase. Mr. Dover, aware of the state of affairs, but 
unwilling to alarm the lady, said nothing, but got out on 
to the step, intending to dismount at the next hill and cap- 
ture the horses. Unfortunately, in getting down, he slipped 
and fell on the ice, and the coach rattled on. At length he 
reached the next inn, at Cross Bank, where he engaged a 
saddle-horse and galloped after the runaways, expecting to 
find them overturned at the bottom of some steep hill. But 
they had out-distanced him too far to be overtaken ; and 
great was his astonishment when he found the horses standing 
panting in front of the King's Arms, at Kirkby Stephen, in 
their accustomed place, and the lady and gentleman blissftilly 
unconscious of the perilous drive they had had during the 
last ten miles, and wondering what had become of their driver. 
We have gone ahead since the old coaching-days; and the 
Ingleton Branch of the London and North-Western Railway, 
opened in 1861, now brings travellers from all parts to within 
a mile of Sedbergh; and rival omnibuses set them down in 
the heart of the town without delay. 

In the seventeenth century the want of small change was 
much felt throughout the country, owing to the neglect of 
the Government to issue a properly accredited copper coinage ; 
and private persons engaged in trade presumed to issue 
tokens for the convenience of themselves and their customers. 
Pennies, half-pennies, and farthings, were issued at Sedbergh 
by Thomas Shaw and Nicholas Comey, between 1666 and 
1672 ; and pennies and farthings at Dent, by Anthony Fawcet 
and others, within the same period. An octagonal Sedbergh 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 1 69 

half-penny and a circular Dent farthing are represented in 
Boyne's " Yorkshire Tokens." The plentiful sprinkling of roses 
on the Sedbergh coin, and the central rose and crown on that 
intended **FOR . OVR . GOOD . NEIGHBORS" in Dent, show that 
loyalty to the throne had by no means been extinguished by 
the Civil War. 

A Book Club, established in 1782, has existed without 
interruption to the present day. Literature was scarce in the 
country when it was formed, and it had members at Kirkby 
Stephen, fifteen miles away. The subscriptions of past gene- 
rations have left us a useful store of solid books; and such 
bulky morsels as the Annual Register for a number of years 
in last century, Nichols' Literary Anecdotes in ten large 
volumes, and Bayle's Dictionary in four ponderous folios, are 
memorials of their sound digestion. The dusty tomes over 
which they pored are now disturbed only by a few omnivorous 
bookworms, the modem mind inclining more to Mudie's latest 
fiction, and pictorial monthlies. The annual dinner seems to 
have been a function of some importance, but literature and 
liquor did not always consort agreeably. A committee 
appointed in 1833 to provide fresh accommodation for the 
books, and a new librarian, travel a little beyond their purview, 
and report that, "In consequence of the refusal of two of 
" the Innkeepers to provide an annual Dinner for the Club, 
**we recommend no Dinner hereafter, but that Wine and a 
''Dessert be provided, and that each Member allow a pint of 
*' wine and pay three shillings towards defi-aying the expenses." 

We may now take some peeps at legal and parochial 
administration. James Ritter, writing to Lord Burleigh towards 
the end of Elizabeth's reign, reports concerning the people 
of Sedbergh and Dent : — " In Sedbar the Vycar could present 
"to me only four disordered persons, — ^which I bound to 
V 



Digitized by 



Google 



I70 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

-**good abearing as barrators, — that haunted alehouses, the 
" great fault of this country, and were daily fighting, quarrel- 
**ling, and disquieting this good people. In Dent only one 
"was brought before me, for very undutiful parties to his 
** father. This is notable amongst so many hundredth house- 
" holders. Now your Lordship cometh to the marvel; no 
" Justice of the Peace is resident within thirty myles of them 
"in their county."* In 1791 there was no^ acting magistrate 
within fifty miles of Sedbergh, and a petition was sent to the 
lord-lieutenant calling his attention to the circumstance, 
and requesting that certain names might be placed in the 
commission. Probably about this time the need of some 
repressive agency had become apparent; for in 1783 the 
Gentlemen and Principal Inhabitants of Sedbergh gave public 
notice that they had bound themselves by a Deed, dated 
April 2 1 St, 1783, "to join at the expense of attending the 
"punishing of all Vagrants, and the Harbourers or Enter- 
" tainers of them, the suppressing of all disorderly Alehouses, 
"or otherwise punishing the Keepers thereof, the prosecuting 
"of Persons gfuilty of any kind of Nuisances in the public 
"Streets or Highways within the said Township, and the 
"carrying on Prosecutions against all Persons guilty of any 
"Murder, Robbery, Rape, Burglary, burning of Houses or 
"other Buildings, stealing of Sheep, or other kind of Theft, 
"Felony, Misdemeanor, Breach of the Peace, Breaking of 
"Hedges, or any other Offence whatsoever of a criminal 
" nature." 

While magistrates were so inaccessible, ordinary breaches 
of the peace would be dealt with by the usual village author- 
ities — the constable, churchwardens, and overseers. From the 

• Quoted from Professor Sedgwick's Memorial^ where he gives the letter more 
fiilly from the Lansdowne MSS. 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 17 1 

parish accounts we find that the stocks were repaired in 1724, 
1 73 1, and 1788; and there is an ominous payment of td. "to 
Richard Backhus, for taking care of the dooking stoole." 
Certainly our forefathers had a very practical, and it is to be 
hoped effective, way of dealing with incorrigible scolds ; and 
when Mrs. Bittertongue was to be escorted to the banks of 
the Rawthey, to be deposited in her chair of state in the 
cooling fluid, there' would be many victims of her past invectives 
ready and willing to assist in the ceremony. 

In civil cases involving claims under 40^. we had an 
ancient "Wapentake Court," held every three weeks, under 
the Sheriff of the County, by his deputy the Steward, with 
a Bailiff to enforce the decrees. The plaintiff and defen- 
dant stated their cases before a jury of twelve men, who were 
the judges ; witnesses on both sides were examined on oath 
administered by the steward; and after verdict pronounced, 
an execution was issued against the goods of the losing party, 
which it was the duty of the bailiff to see duly carried out. 
A fair amount of business was transacted, the summonses for 
three years averaging about one hundred and twenty annually, 
and the executions about ten. "This, I believe," says the 
steward, the late Mr. Dawson Watson, in his report drawn up 
in 1839 in answer to a parliamentary inquiry, "is the only 
"wapentake court now held under the ancient establishment, 
"which is accounted for by its being in so remote a part 
"of the county" — being in fact eighty-seven miles from the 
city of York, where the court was held for the whole county. 

The custom of tithing was curious. It is described at the 
end of a tithe-collector's book dated 1816; from which I 
gather that, as regards Wool, the Tenth Fleece of all sheep, 
alive or dead, was to be truthfully rendered. But "if the 
"parishioner have only five sheep, being his full number, or 



Digitized by 



Google 



172 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

** five sheep remaining after his other stock is tithed, then the 
** parishioner having taken up two fleeces, the farmer [namely, 
** of the tithes, the tithe-collector] and parishioner shall divide 
**the best of the three fleeces left, whereof the * farmer' to 
" have half and the owner the other half." As regards Lambs, 
tTie owner was to collect his full number in a fold, on the 
morrow of the Sunday following the Nativity of St. John the 
Baptist, and then taking out four of the best for himself, the 
tithe collector was to take his tenth, and then the parishioner 
was to select five in like manner, and again four, until the 
process was ended. And if the parishioner should have five 
odd lambs, or five only in all, then he was to set a price on 
the best ; with the option, either of receiving from the collector 
half such price for the lamb, or of paying it himself and 
retaining the lamb. 

Here is an extract from an Indenture of Apprenticeship 
dated 1762. It purports be made between a father and his 
son, but the formalities are in no way curtailed on that 
account. Thomas Kennedy, of his own free-will, binds him- 
self apprentice to his father, David Kennedy, of Sedbergh, 
tailor, for the term of seven years, during which "the said 
'* Apprentice his said Father and Master shall well and faith- 
" fully serve, his Secrets shall Keep, his lawful and reasonable 
"Commands shall do; Fornication or Adultery he shall not 
"commit; Hurt or Damage to his said Father and Master 
"he shall not do, or consent to be done him; Taverns or 
" Alehouses he shall not haunt or frequent, unless it be about 
"his Master's business; and at Cards or Dice, Tables [the 
" old name for backgammon] or Bowls, or any other unlawful 
" Games, he shall not play." In return for these observances 
and privations his Father and Master covenants that he will 
" teach, learn, and inform him, or cause to be taught, learnt 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 1 73 

"or informed, in the Science or Trade of a Tailor, after the 
*' best manner or knowledge that he may or can, with all the 
"circumstances thereunto belonging;" and will provide him 
with such food and clothing, lodging and washing, as shall 
be necessary during the time of his apprenticeship. 

The nicety of poor-law administration would doubtless be 
shocked at the method of "farming the poor," which was in 
vogue here in the last century. I have before me an elabo- 
rate Agreement for Letting the Poor of Sedbergh in 1789, 
made between the Churchwardens and Overseers on the one 
part, and two Howgill men on the other ; in which the latter, 
whose tender had been preferred, undertake, for the sum of 
j;^ 1 95, to provide during a year for all persons who were then, 
or should become, chargeable to the township. Mention is 
made of "the House heretofore appropriated for the lodging 
of the Poor;" and I am informed that they were formerly 
housed near Settlebeck, and afterwards removed to a building 
opposite the foot of New Street, where a re-arrangement of 
windows, still traceable, indicates a transition to a different 
use. The Sedbergh Union was formed in 1840, and the 
present Union built in 1854, since which time the collective 
poor of Sedbergh, Garsdale, and Dent, have been suitably 
accommodated and cared for by the Guardians elected by 
these townships respectively. 

Besides the destitute poor, there would always be a fairly 
numerous class of persons in the strata immediately or not 
far above them, to whom a little pecuniary assistance would 
now and then be of the utmost service; and the tiny runlet 
of benevolence which first travelled in their direction gradually 
swelled into a copious stream. The local Charities were 
administered by the Governors of the Grammar School until 
1879, when the Charity Commissioners transferred them to a 



Digitized by 



Google 



174 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

separate trust, with an intimation of a "further scheme," which, 
however, has not been promulgated and put in force until this 
present year. It deals with an annual income of ;^393 4^. 2^., 
comprising in particular: — Bequests to Poor Householders, 
;^i43 us. id.; Bread Charities, ;^ 1 1 i^s.od.; Children's Charity 
Trust, ;^i8 igs. 3^.; Coal and Blanket Charity, £s os. Sd.; 
two small items for the Market House and a School in 
Marthwaite, amounting tO;^2 i^s.^d.; a local Exhibition Fund, 
£$g 16s. 6d,; and the Widows' Hospital, ;£i5i Ss. ^d. The 
doles to poor householders used to be distributed half-yearly, 
at Easter and Christmas, and in many cases enabled the 
recipients to live practically rent-free. The Bread Charities 
were distributed in Church, partly on Sundays and partly on 
St. John's Day [cf. p. 84 suprd). The Widows' Hospital was 
endowed by Thomas Palmer, a retired solicitor, in 1854 (p. iii). 
Like the fund for poor householders, the local Exhibition to 
St. John's College, Cambridge, has been the accumulation of 
various benefactions, of which may be particularised £(>o 
left by Francis Harrison, of Stone Hall, in 16 19; £20 by 
Posthumus Wharton, Master of the Grammar School, in 17 10; 
and ;£ioo by Richard Holmes, in 1735. By the New Scheme 
the Church and the Grammar School have eadi, as before, 
three representatives among the thirteen trustees, the rate- 
payers have four, and the rest are chosen by the trustees 
themselves. The Widows' Hospital endowment and the Exhi- 
bition fund remain practically undisturbed, except that the 
latter may now be held at any university in the United 
Kingdom. The doles, however, have been diverted into quite 
fresh channels, and now flow towards hospitals, provident 
clubs and literary institutions, outfits, emigrants' passage-money, 
aid in sickness, temporary grants or loans in emergencies, 
and the like. 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 175 

A cottage in Bun Row — so called from its connection with 
the bread charities — was the scene of a pretty disturbance in 
1850, which is still remembered by some of the older residents. 
"Jack o' Dyers," a native of Dent, had become possessed 
with the idea that he was the heir-at-law to this particular 
cottage, and that he had a better title to it than the Governors ; 
and he proceeded to enforce his claim by getting four men 
to help him to smash the door and take possession. The 
Governors soon had a constable on the spot and ordered him 
to take the intruders into custody; but as this was more 
easily said than done, the matter was compromised by the 
constable being allowed to remain with the inmates. Getting 
tired of his protracted guard he requested to be relieved by 
another constable. He was accordingly let out, but the door 
was bolted behind him just in time to exclude his successor; 
and Jack o' Dyers & Co. were again in sole possession, and 
held the fort for two days longer. The Governors, impressed 
with the gravity of the situation, now assembled an over- 
whelming force, who demolished doors and windows, and 
by dint of hard fighting summarily ejected the besieged 
neck-and-crop. All Sedbergh was there to see, and a mighty 
commotion was stirred up ; insomuch that the majesty of the 
law appeared on the scene in the person of the late John 
Elam, Esq., J.P., who, by the terrors of the Riot Act, dispersed 
the mob ; and Jack o' Dyers retired crest-fallen, " a sadder and 
a wiser man." 

I observe in the Governors' minutes, that the tenant of the 
cottage was solaced with a sovereign on two occasions, for 
the trouble and inconvenience which he had been put to by 
this "party of rebels." The Governors themselves appear to 
have agreed to differ, within the limits of moderation, on most 
occasions; but there was one exception in 1844, when a 



Digitized by 



Google 



176 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

member of the body, dissatisfied with the action of his 
colleagues, seized the opportunity of Sunday leisure to fire 
four times at the windows of his arch-enemy, putting the 
family in great fear. The rest of the Governors had no 
hesitation in deciding that gun-law was unsuited to a civilised 
country; and they accordingly relegated the pragmatical marks- 
man to the obscurity of private life, and elected a colleague 
with more sweet reasonableness in his stead. — I cannot forbear 
informing the reader, on the authority of these same minutes, 
that a good fence-wall, in the opinion of local experts, is one 
which has "two rows of throughs" and is "seven quarters 
high under the cams." 

Rowdyism was not the usual attribute of Sedberghians, 
and men distinguished themselves also in other walks of life. 
One universal genius we had, who died in 1822, aged forty- 
eight, and wise beyond his years. He seems to have con- 
centrated in his own person the crafts of a score of ordinary 
mortals ; and I quote his panegyric from the Lonsdale Magazine 
of that date, as much for the interesting list of village utili- 
ties then in request, as for the all-embracing omniscience of 
Mr. John Whitwell. The passage will afford an indication of 
the expansion of demand and supply, during the last seventy 
years, from the modest wants of the isolated villagers in 1822, 
to the multiplied requirements and gratifications of the 
thriving community of 1891. 

** The business-like manner/* says the contemporary chronicler, **in 
** which he conducted everything under his care, pointed him out as a proper 
** person to fill the various parochial offices of Overseer of the Poor, 
'* Constable, Assessor and Collector of Taxes, Churchwarden, Governor of the 
** Workhouse, Vagrant- Master, Clerk, and Sexton. He was also Auctioneer, 
** Appraiser, and Bellman to the village, Surveyor of Roads, Surveyor of 
** Land, Land Agent, and Bailiff to several gentlemen, aud Agent to all 
** the neighbouring newspapers. His knowledge of the business of Farmings 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIP*E. 1 77 

*'and his skill in Chemistry, qualified him to act as Druggist, Farrier, and 
•• Cow Leech to the neighbourhood. Among the various occupations by 
** which he rendered himself useful to the community, we may enumerate 
** those of Stationer, Barber, Rag Dealer, Oil and Colour-man, Teacher and 
*' Dealer in Music, Painter, Clock-dresser, Draper, Upholsterer, Bell-hanger, 
** Tooth-drawer, Umbrella-mender, and Blacking-maker. Like all other men 
*' of genius, Mr. Whitwell often amused himself with studying other 
** mechanical arts, merely to gratify the natural bent of his inclination, 
*' which led him to seek the arcana of every art. By this means he became 
**a tolerable workman as a Hatter, Bookbinder, Brazier, Tin- worker,. Fiddler, 
** Gilder, Shoemaker, Stick-dresser, Joiner, , Dyer, Weaver, Lace-maker, 
** Glass-blower, Turner, maker of Thermometers and Barometers; and a 
** great variety of other arts, each of which might have been sufficient for 
"a man of moderate capacity.** 

There has been a customary market at Sedbergh on 
Wednesday, from time immemorial ; and this would be the 
merriest day in all the week for Mr. John Whitwell. Not- 
withstanding, previously to the opening of the Ingleton Line, 
in 1 86 1, the frequenters of it might often be counted on the 
fingers of both hands. Not that the inhabitants were averse 
to converting negotiable articles into cash, for I have met 
with "a half-share in a pump," and "a pew in Sedbergh 
Church/' in public sale-bills; but the butter, which was the 
article of regular production, was collected at the do6r by 
dealers — * butter-badgers ' they were called — who transmitted 
it to the nearest station. The farmers now, in most cases, 
bring their butter to the market and dispose of it themselves 
to buyers from the Leeds and Bradford district. There are 
six 'fairs held in the course of the year — four for the sale of 
cattle, on Feb. 26th, March 20th, April 28th, and Oct. 29th ; 
and two for pleasure, on the Wednesday in Whit-week, and 
the Wednesday following October 3rd. 

The conditions of life now are less favourable to originality 

of character than they were in the fifties. We are rapidly 
w 



Digitized by 



Google 



178 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

being reduced to a monotonous uniformity ; the dry-rot of a 
respectable but uninteresting conventionalism has set in, and 
figures occur to my recollection which seem out of season 
now. There was Gipsy Jack, who wore his wardrobe on his 
person, and who, summer and winter alike, was swathed in a 
multiplicity of coats and waistcoats. He was a humble species 
of quack-doctor, and enjoyed the reputation of curing various 
ailments — ^what, in particular, they were, I could never learn — 
and he carried a supply of pills in an old tobacco-box. He 
was an uncanny creature, and delighted in telling us school- 
boys the greatest untruths he could invent; but when, one 
day, he solemnly and circumstantially reported to us the 
death of his Satanic Majesty, we ceased ever after to confide 
in his veracity. There was Crowdy Billy, too, whose faculty 
for consuming an article of diet unknown at modem dinner- 
tables, had won for him the proud title which took precedence 
of his baptismal name. He strove hard to live up to his 
reputation ; and we were sorry when, upon one occasion, in 
his eagerness to ^ain a wager, he swallowed his meal and 
hot water before the maximum point of expansion had been 
reached, and subjected himself to consequences which were 
alarming and all but fatal. A later eccentric was Will Carlile, 
who, like his father before him, was a famous cow-doctor, 
certain to kill or cure in all cases. He had a dry caustic wit 
which sometimes left a sore place. In his latter days he took 
to Bohemian ways of existence, and occasionally bivouacked 
in an omnibus. He was ambitious of living a thousand years, 
but one stormy night he slipped into the Rawthey, and 
effectually curtailed his prospect of a millennium. There 
was also Mally Gibson, a * terrible knitter,' who, with coal- 
scuttle bonnet, faultless cap-border, bare arms and homeliest 
of fi-ocks, recalled a bygone age of rural simplicity, as thus 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 1 79 

equipped she rattled her needles and danced her *cop' of 
* bump-gam ' beside her the livelong day. And, lastly, there 
was Old Willan, from Dent, promoted for a few years from 
a pauper's fare to considerable riches. The trial in which 
he was proved to be one of the co-heirs of Thomas Spooner, 
Esq., who, springing from Asby, in Westmorland, had acquired 
great wealth in London and valuable estates in Suffolk, took 
place at Liverpool, in 1854. Upwards of eighty witnesses, 
many of them from seventy to ninety years old, were present ; 
and as soon as the decision was known at Sedbergh and 
Dent, the church bells rang out victoriously, and the natives 
rejoiced to share the triumph. Changed fortune made no 
change in the old man's toilet, but he continued to appear 
with his accustomed night-cap and stout oak stick. But 
when his heirs succeeded to the treasure, the coins amassed by 
Thomas Spooner were put into active circulation, and rapidly 
transferred to the pockets of fresh owners. 

After dwelling so long on the past, it will be expected 
that I should say something about the present condition of 
the people in this neighbourhood — their manners, customs, 
dialect, and folk-lore. 

But first a word or two as to the population of the district. 
The recent census reveals that we have in the township of 
Sedbergh, 2,374 inhabitants; in that of Garsdale, 535 ; and 
in that of Dent, 1,131.* The Sedbergh contingent has been 
increased by 106 since the previous census, while Garsdale 
and Dent show a diminution of 67 and 78 respectively — 



• More particularly : — Township of Sedbergh: Sedbergh Town, 904; Frostrow -and- 
Soolbank and Marthwaite, 1,042 ; Cautleyand-Dowbiggin, 233 ; Howgill, 195 ; — 
Total, 2,374. 

Township of Dent: Dent Town, 269; Cowgill, 352; rest of Township, 510; — 
Total, 1,131. 



Digitized by 



Google 



l8o SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

which decrease may be ascribed principally to the union of 
small farms, mija^ration to Liverpool milk-houses, and the 
growing employment of our young men as policemen and 
railway porters. In 1801, the year when the census was first 
taken, the township of Sedbergh contained only 1,639 inhabi- 
tants, to whom Cautley contributed 300, and Howgill 199; 
and at that time Dent was considerably ahead of Sedbergh 
in point of population. In 1861 the* number was abnormally 
increased at Sedbergh by the workmen employed in the con- 
struction of the Ingleton Line; and in 1871 the Settle and 
Carlisle Railway, which crosses the upper ends of the two 
valleys, similarly enlarged the totals in Garsdale and Dent. 

The employments of the people outside the town are 
essentially agricultural. We have a bobbin-mill and dye- 
works at Birks, and two mills — at Farfield and Rawthey 
Bank — for the manufacture of horse-clothing and similar 
fabrics ; and these latter, the establishments of Messrs. Dover 
and Sons, find employment for about one hundred and fifty 
hands. A woollen mill was first commenced at Hebblethwaite 
Hall by Robert Foster; and about the year 1794 his son Myles, 
father of Mr. Birket Foster, entered into partnership with 
Joseph Dover. Here they carried on the manufacture of 
various kinds of hand-knit hosiery and a cloth used exclusively 
by the miners of Durham, the yam being spun at the mill 
and then transferred to Sedbergh, to be woven by hand in 
"Weavers' Yard," where the old 'shop' still partly exists. 
After the death of Myles Foster, Joseph Dover built Farfield 
Mills, to which he removed in 1836, and added to the business 
the production of horse-clothing. The industries above referred 
to give employment to some natives, and attract a few 
strangers; but otherwise we are almost entirely agricultural 
and indigenous. 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. l8l 

What traits, then, would a class of men cut off almost 
completely from contact with the outer world, and confined to 
the operations of agricultural routine, be likely to develope ? 
Apart from the Grammar School, through which a small 
portion of the population filtered to learning and preferment, 
there was little in these dales to stimulate the intelligence or 
to awaken a desire for change and progress. The labourer 
or small farmer who 

"from the dawn to set 
Sweats in the eye of Phoebus, and all night 
Sleeps in Elysium ; next day, after dawn, 
Doth rise and help Hyperion to his horse; 
And follows so the ever-running year 
With profitable labour to his grave," 

cannot be expected to look far beyond the fields he tills, or 
the hills which circumscribe his outlook. The two or three 
dales which frequented the same market were a microcosm 
in themselves, and beyond their limits the natives seldom 
ventured to stray. 

This isolation had its result in a certain clannishness and 
jealousy of strangers which is still perceptible. Fifty years ago 
the natives probably would not have welcomed an outsider 
with a shower of stones, or even "half a brick," but they 
would certainly have waited until they had known a good 
deal about him before admitting him freely to their intimacy. 
And even yet, in spite of the influence of education and 
railways, and the increased influx of aliens, new settlers are 
weighted with a certain amount of distrust ; and a tacit 
convention prevails that the native is the only genuine 
article. It takes time for a new-comer to understand and 
appreciate our peculiarities, to get at our hearts, and to feel 
that he is absolutely one of us ; but this done, and confidence 



Digitized by 



Google 



1 82 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DEN1\ 

established, it is wonderful how much less a man's actions are 
canvassed, and how much more readily his motives pass 
unquestioned. 

Closely connected with this excess of caution, is a shyness 
of manner and apparent lack of courtesy, which no doubt 
impress a stranger unfavourably. The shyness is really the 
constitutional product of centuries of isolation, and it will 
require much contact with " the madding crowd " before it can 
be quite eradicated. It is often felt as an infirmity by the 
individual, which he would give much to be able to overcome ; 
and sometimes, in attempting to conceal the defect, he falls into 
the opposite extreme of noisy obstreperousness and familiarity, 
when the cure is many times worse than the disease. The 
lack of courtesy is more apparent than real, and has its root 
in sincerity of thought and action. It is far as the poles 
asunder from voluble "gush" and conventional all-pleasing; 
but it is more to be depended upon, and if it asserts little it 
means much. Sterling integrity often lies hidden under a 
brusque exterior; and, after some experience of men and 
manners, I am free to confess that I would sooner trust the 
monosyllabic acquiescence of a dalesman, as an earnest of 
performance, than the complaisant versatility of men who are 
much given to washing their hands "with invisible soap in im- 
perceptible water." The life of the dalesman is lived in the 
eye of heaven; the "larger air" of his native mountains in- 
spires him with a sense of self-reliance and independence ; he 
is healthy, hardy, and accustomed to plenty of elbow-room, and 
he does not take kindly to the restraints of a more polished 
state of society, or allow himself to be jostled and pushed 
by anyone with impunity. But he is sound at the core, and 
is as mindful of a kindness as he is sensitive of a slight. 
Shrewd and wary, cautious and circumspect, he often is to a 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 183 

high degree; but his reserve once conquered and mistrust 
disarmed, an honester workman, a more peaceable neighbour, 
or a truer friend, you would scarcely find. 

The domestic life of the dalesman is simplicity itself. The 
farm-houses scattered over the valleys are built of the native 
stone, and roofed with the heavy fissile sandstone slate of the 
neighbourhood. They stand shoulder to shoulder with * lathe ' 
and *shippen' — barn and cow-house — of which they usually 
form a section, distinguished externally by windows and white- 
wash, and mostly by an unassuming porch or court. Brick 
is all but unknown in the country, and one of the first 
curiosities that surprised my untravelled eyes was a building 
of that material. If we step inside and cast our eyes down- 
wards, they are met by a flagged and sanded floor, surrounded 
by the ingenious housewife with an ornamental border of 
* stoning ; ' or if we raise them upwards, in place of a plastered 
ceiling we behold bare whitewashed boards, visibly supported 
by beams or * balks,' and festooned with hams and * haver- 
bread.' By the hobs stand the arm-chair and rocking .ditto, 
respectively appropriated to the ^maister' and his 'mistress.' 
Between them, in winter, brightly bums an ample fire of coal 
and wood — sometimes of peat or turf— overhung with cranes 
and * reckans,' and a chimney-piece 

'* Which in our ancient uncouth country style 
Does with a huge projection overbrow 
Large space beneath,*' 

and flanked on one side by the antique grandfather's clock 
with oaken case and brazen dial, the heirloom of generations ; 
and, on the other, by the wooden * long-settle,' the precursor 
of the modem and more luxurious sofa. A dresser surmounted 
by a * pair of rails,' designed to hold the willow-pattern plates 
(for wooden trenchers and pewter dishes, though occasionally 



Digitized by 



Google 



1 84 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

to be met with as treasured survivals of the past, are rapidly- 
disappearing) — a comer-cupboard for the tea-service — three or 
four wooden shelves strung together at the ends and laden 
with literature, chiefly of a religious tone and tendency, — and 
we have a rough inventory of the more peculiar features of 
the room designated by pre-eminence the * house,' or ordinary 
rustic drawing-room. The other apartments are the kitchen, 
for cooking purposes and the rougher work; the dairy or 

* milk-house ' ; and in some dwellings the parlour, adorned with 
the choicest of the furniture, and reserved for the reception 
of ^bettermore' folk. 

Such relics of the past as spinning-wheels, and carved 
seventeenth-century oak, are rapidly disappearing before the 
tempting offers of admirers of the antique and dealers in 
curiosities; though I have known instances where the dated 

* kist,' with the initials of ancestors, is religiously preserved in 
humble families, in spite of all inducements to the contrary. 

Many old houses of a larger and more substantial con- 
struction, now used as farm-houses pure and simple, still 
remain to remind us of that sturdy class of * statesmen' 
{i,e. estates-men, or persons living on their own land) who 
are now sadly thinned, but who were once the backbone 
of rural industry, respectability, and independence. These 
houses, in so far as they retain their older features, are 
distinguished by muUioned windows and dated doorways, of 
the seventeenth or eighteenth century, a porch with a small 
chamber over it, round Flemish chimneys, and sometimes by 
a flower-garden in front and an orchard at the end or rear. 
Inside there is a miscellaneous assortment of large and small 
rooms, and usually a creaking staircase leads to uneven upstairs 
floors of black oak, with some remains of panelled wainscot. 
Stone Hall, near Sedbergh, may be indicated as a typical 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 



185 



example of the statesman's house. Some of the windows 
have been altered into the modern sash, and others were 
blinded, probably in the days of the window-tax, and have 
not since recovered their sight ; but, with a little imagination, 
it is easy to reconstruct the building as it appeared in its 
palmiest days. It might have sat for the portrait which 
Longfellow has drawn of a similar building — 

*'A Hall 
Now somewhat fallen to decay, 
With weather- stains upon the wall, 
And stairways worn, and crazy doors, 
And creaking and uneven floors. 
And chimneys huge and tall.'* 




Digitized by 



Google 



l86 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

The inscription above the door — " Christopher & lane 
Gowthrop : 1695" — indicates merely renovation or repairs at 
that time, for "the Stone Hall" appears in our registers 
nearly a century previously; and the definite article seems to 
distinguish the original building fi-om the flimsier structures — 
the wooden tenements or \clay daubins* perchance— of a 
former age ; just as * the Loft House ' points to the time when 
a dwelling with an upper storey was somewhat of a rarity. 

The occupations of the dalesman are simple and monoto- 
nous enough. The day is spent in a round of agricultural 
operations and attentions. Where the common is still un- 
enclosed, a portion of each day must be devoted to herding 
the sheep, keeping them on their accustomed *heaf,' and 
repelling the encroachments of stragglers fi-om adjoining 
flocks. The common at Sedbergh does not appear to be the 
bone of contention which it is in some places ; and the 
farmers seldom fall out over disputed rights, though sometimes 
a * dogging-case ' will arise. I remember one such, in which 
the solicitor for the plaintiff, while cross-examining an adverse 
witness, fondly supposed himself to be on the track of an 
unparalleled atrocity. "You admit that the dog had hold of 
plaintiff's sheep: now will you tell us where it had hold?" 
"On t' tongue." Gladness in the eye of the solicitor and 
sensation in the court, — speedily dispelled, however, by the 
unromantic explanation that *on t* tongue' was not an 
antithesis for *on t' tail,' but only a localisation to the 
peculiarly shaped hill called' " The Tongue," in Cautley. 

The common, bleak and bare as it may appear to outward 
view, is a varied repository of natural wealth to the farmer. 
The bent cropped by his black-faced sheep and galloways, 
and the greener herbage nibbled by his foot-marked geese, 
chaperoned by their jealous * steg,' are not the only products 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 1 87 

of the unreclaimed waste. The brackens feathering the hill- 
sides, and the * sieves' which bristle in the lower swamps, 
have their peculiar uses. Mown and dried, they make excellent 
bedding for horses and cattle; and from the latter was 
obtained the glimmering rushlight, until it was succeeded by 
the scarcely less feeble flickering of the farthing-candle. 
What the precise illuminating power of * Cautley twinks ' may 
be I do not know, but they are a local synonym for darkness 
visible. The ^ling' is useful for besoms, and the 'whins' for 
firewood. Peats and turf were once an enlivening supplement 
to the dull and ashy coal which used to be extracted from 
these fells; but since the "black diamonds" began to reach 
us by rail, the thin seams of native coal have been abandoned, 
and the extraneous adjuncts of dried fuel much forborne. 

Com is rarely grown here, though at one time its cultiva- 
tion must have been considerable; for Dr. Whitaker notes 
that though at the time of the dissolution of the monasteries 
not much corn was grown in this parish, yet about eighty 
years previously the burgesses of Richmond complained of 
its increased cultivation in the parts of Lonsdale, Craven, 
Dent, and Sedbergh, and that the inhabitants came no longer 
to buy com at their market, for they had it at home. 
Probably the experiment of growing com on the bleak hill- 
sides was tried for a time, and failed. The idea, however, of 
seeing what could be done in this way was revived in later 
times, when com was dear ; and a public notice of a weekly 
market for g^rain at Sedbergh, issued in 18 14, suggests that 
"from the increased quantity of grain grown in the neigh- 
"bourhood of Sedbergh, the market will be highly advanta- 
"geous, both for buyer and seller, being so far distant from 
" a corn-market." From what I can learn, the market did not 
last long ; and we now restrict ourselves almost exclusively to 
grazing, and the production of beef, mutton, and butter. 



Digitized by 



Google 



t88 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

But besides the various, though somewhat monotonous, 
employments suggested above, once a year there comes the 
busy, urgent season of haytime. Then all is life in the dales, 
and labour is at a premium. The barometer, unheeded during 
the rest of the year, now assumes the dignity of a daily 
referee, and the traditional lore of the weather-wise is 
brought to the touchstone of experience. The mowers used 
to pride themselves on the "bat" (sweep or breadth) which 
they could take with their long scythes, but the introduction 
of the mowing-machine has much abated their importance. 
Where the unevenness of the ground precludes the safe use 
of carts, the hay is sledded, on the principle of small burdens 
and quick returns. The finishing-day is usually marked by a 
varied supply of cakes to tea, after which the farmer relapses 
into his normal quietude for the remaining eleven months. 

In the evening the dalesman, if he be of a literary turn 
of mind, will peruse the local weekly newspaper, particularly 
the murders and startling events ; while his dame does house- 
hold mending, darns the stockings, or "addles" a few pence 
by knitting labourers' coarse jerseys for hire — a proceeding 
termed " knitting bump," and though, like clogs, now mostly 
confined to the weaker sex, not many years ago it was 
frequently the joint occupation of male and female alike. 

The meals are frugal and the fare plain. Oatcake, or 
wheaten bread, butter, milk, and eggs, and a toughish cheese, 
made of the skimmed or *blue' milk — the produce of the 
farm — are the ordinary viands. Wordsworth, in his simple, 
life-like story of the shepherd Michael and his son, has 
succinctly summarised the old-fashioned list of supper-dainties. 

**When day was gone, 
And from their occupations out of doors 
The son and father were come home, even then 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 1 89 

Their labour did not cease, unless when all 
Turned to their cleanly supper-board, and there 
Each with a mess of pottage and skimmed milk 
Sat round their basket piled with oaten cakes 
And their plain home-made cheese.** 

Butcher's meat not being procurable except on market-days, 
does not usually hold out through the week, but there is always 
a good supply of bacon ready as an unfailing substitute all 
the year round. Hung-beef was formerly another alternative ; 
and the salty diet would be agreeably varied at times with 
a pigeon-pie. The frequent but now disused provision at old 
farm-houses for keeping pigeons, sometimes over the porch, 
more commonly at the end of the barn, is a memorial of the 
scarcity of fresh meat in former times, and of the resource 
from which the diet could be varied now and then. 

Not but that the dalesman, on occasion, can have recourse 
to better cheer. No one who speaks from experience will 
refuse to credit him with the virtue of hospitality, and whether 
a tea-party or a supper-night, a sheep- washing or a * clipping,* 
collects his kindred and acquaintances, the laden board will 
show a varied and ample store of viands. The amusements 
of the people lie within narrow limits; but such as they are, 
they are entered into with hearty goodwill. The opera and 
the pantomime, and the manifold sights and recreations of 
large towns, are joys to be read of in books, but do not come 
within the dalesman's ken. Railway communication has 
brought the sea within his reach, and a cheap trip sometimes 
carries him as far as Morecambe ; but mostly an itinerant 
circus or menagerie, at Sedbergh, satisfies his craving for the 
wonderful in art and nature. 

The dalesman's credulity in what transcends the sphere of 
his observation, is, as might be expected from his history. 



Digitized by 



Google 



igo SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

somewhat extensive. It has been much shaken of late years 
by the general diffusion of education; but * boggles' and 
'bargnests' still haunt his imagination as possibilities in the 
order of nature, and he retains an otiose belief in wisemen 
and witches. Not many years ago there was scarcely lonely 
barn or stile but might be suspected of being the haunt of 
"hydras, gorgons, and chimaeras dire," called in rustic parlance 
* flayings/ There is great reluctance to marry on a Friday, 
and should the wedding-party meet a hearse in returning from 
the hymeneal altar, they would be oppressed with sad fore- 
bodings. The native still augurs weal or woe from the number 
of magpies he sees ; and the cracking of an oaken table, or 
a tapping at the window in the dead of night, portends some 
dear one's death. If a cinder shoots from the fire, it is 
examined carefully, to see whether it resembles a cradle or a 
coffin ; and a fertile imagination can generally construe it into 
one or the other. The crowing of a cock by day, or the 
separation of a sooty film from the grate-bar, betokens the 
arrival of a stranger. I do not suppose, however, that the 
folk-lore of these dales is different from that of similar places 
in the North; and these examples may serve as specimens of 
the rest. 

Old customs of special interest are nearly extinct, but there 
is one which still obtains to some extent — I mean the practice 
of sending out a sweet biscuit with the memorial card to the 
friends of the deceased. It is a relic of the system of funeral 
festivities which was once widely prevalent, and not improbably 
it had its origin in the arvel (Norse erfi-oly inheritance ale) or 
inheritance- feast among our Scandinavian ancestors, when the 
heir took formal possession of the property of his departed 
kinsman. In Christian times funeral doles to the poor were 
added to the programme ; but much importance continued to 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 1 91 

be attached to the due supply of eatables. The following copy 
of an undertaker's bill for a funeral at Dent, in 1770, will 
show how such matters were managed a century ago, and how 
large a proportion of the expenditure was owing to the liberal 
use of refreshments : — "To making coffin, 9^. 6d.; to shroud, i^.; 
/(7 cakes, lis. iod.\ to boarding expenses for 3 weeks, ;^3 35. od.; 
to "lo people for dinnersy ale^ <5^•^., ;^4 4^. o^.; to inviting to funeral, 
2S,\ to * Itckours' at Js. Ridding' Sy gs. 2d.; to a bottle of spirits, 3^., 
and \lb. green tea, 2S.\ to crape for shroud, 6^. \od,\ to Doctor 
Lawson's bill, \2S. lod. — Total, ;^ 10 $s. 2d.*' Any one who has 
attended funerals at Sedbergh will know that until a few years 
ago, it was the practice of the sexton, as soon as the last word 
of the service had been uttered, to inform those who had been 
• warned ' to the funeral, that they were invited to partake of 
refreshments, usually at one of the inns. When a new Vicar 
came, this usage seemed to him irreverent, and he hoped that 
some more fitting opportunity of making the announcement 
would be found. So the custom, which was too familiar to 
residents to seem uncouth or strange, has been discontinued. 
I ought to say that these refi-eshings were occasions of kindly 
sympathy, when the good qualities of the deceased were 
prominently remembered ; and I have never known them to 
be accompanied by excess or abuse of any kind. On the 
Sunday after a funeral, it is customary for the nearest relatives 
to appear at Church together, and, even if they usually attend 
Chapel, they seldom fail to respect this rule. 

In point of social rank the statesman and the tenant-farmer 
are pretty much on a par, and their servants are treated nearly 
as well as the masters. Many of them are themselves the 
sons and daughters of farmers, the men being content to bide 
their time in service, until their thrift or earnings furnish them 
with the means of realising their dearest wishes by taking a 



Digitized by 



Google 



192 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

small farm on their own account. They generally sit in the 
same room, and eat at the same table, as their masters; and 
the verbal contrast which represents their mutual relationship, 
is not that of master and servants, but *maister and men.' 
The sentiment of equality and independence thus diffused 
among all classes is attended with the best results, and con- 
tributes much to the contentment of the people. 

One characteristic of our dalesmen must not be omitted — 
their dialect. Although in the town and its immediate precincts 
the old vernacular is a vanishing quantity, yet it is still spoken 
in its purity by the older people at the more distant home- 
steads. There it does not include the misplacement of the 
letter h in words of homely and familiar use. Hands and hearts, 
eggs and apples, are never transformed by native lips speaking 
their own dialect, into 'ands and 'earts, Aeggs and Aapples, 
but the tendency is rather to bring out the initial aspirate, 
where it rightly occurs, with unusual energy. A stranger does 
not usually meet with the dialect in its unadulterated richness 
in casual conversations with the natives; for the countryman 
has a feeling that in the presence of orthodox English it is 
his duty to 'knack,' or *talk fine.' The way to get at the 
genuine folk-speech is to listen to natives conversing among 
themselves, off guard and unrestrained ; and perhaps the best 
opportunity is an altercation, when fluency is stimulated by 
emotion, and the rustic disputant will throw out many a fine 
old Saxon fossil. Or, take a walk through the market or fair, 
and, unless you are to the manner born, you will be surprised 
to learn in what curious terms the agriculturist of the dales is 
accustomed to express himself. You will probably hear some- 
thing about 'tups' and *gimmers,' *hogs' and 'twinters/ 
* draught-ewes,' * newcalt cows,' and * back-end calvers,' or the 
scarcity or plentifulness of *fog' — matters plain as pikestaff 



Digitized by 



Google 



SOCIAL AND DOMESTIC LIFE. 1 95 

to the unsophisticated mind, but to you, dull pedant of the 
town, an unknown tongue. Of words of Scandinavian origin 
there is a fair percentage in common use. The *bam' ^greets' 
or * twines,' when the little * warks ' of infancy prompt it to 
hoist the signal of distress; the schoolboy longs for lessons 
to be over that he may Mate' his companions up to have a 
game; the farmer is conversant with ^byres' and Mathes' 
and * booses'; the mason with *stees' and ^gavelocks'; the 
combatant doubles his *nief' when he wants to fight; and all 
respectable countrymen change their *sarks' as often as 
Sunday, or clean-shirt day, returns. The man who knows the^ 
words I have adduced, and can also discriminate accurately 
between *sikes,' ^ becks,' and * gills,' may be regarded as a 
past- master in our local Norse, and needs np instruction from 
any one. 

Not seldom the current vocables, unfamiliar as they seem, 
are merely fragments of wreckage which old literary English 
has left far behind; and many an obscure phrase in our 
earlier writers finds ready explanation in the living usage of 
country speech. But to illustrate this fact would carry us too 
far afield ; and I remember that we have still other subjects 
waiting to be discussed. 



Digitized by 



Google 



CHAPTER IV. 




THE SCENERY. 

ET US now take stock of our surroundings. 
A community which possesses 52,665 
acres* to roam over, or an average of 
more than a dozen acres for each man, 
woman, and child, cannot justly com- 
plain of overcrowding. A great part 
of this area is, as may be supposed, 
uncultivated. Garsdale and Dent had their commons enclosed 
in 1859; but the wings of Sedberghians are still unclipt, and 
they can meander for miles without fear of running their 
heads against stone walls. 

The chief co-efficients of our ever-varying, ever-beautiful 
scenery, are the mountains which stand round about like pro- 
tecting giants, and the * becks' which leap and tumble down 
their sides to the valley streams, as they hurry onwards to join 
the brimming Lune. The scenic attractions of the district must 
be visited to be appreciated, for no amount of ornamental 
epithets can convey to a third person a true idea of their 
varied loveliness. Every one prefers his own standard of 
attractiveness in such matters; and all I can do is briefly to 



Township, 


Acreaj^c. 


Ratabh Value {Lady-Day, 1891). 


* Sedbcrgh 


19,603 


■• ;fi4,279 


Garsdale 


12,172 


... 4,782 


Dent ... 


.. 20,890 


... 10,579 



Total 



52,665 



;f29,640 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 




Hi 
_5^ 



1 

0) 

1 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 1 95 

indicate the features which seem to me most noticeable, and 
then leave those whom good fortune directs hitherwards to 
discover for themselves other and perhaps not less memorable 
details. 

Had Wordsworth spent a fortnight here in smnmer, instead 
of hurrying past on a showery day in winter, he would have 
found in our rural beauties no mean rivals of his beloved Lake- 
land. Sister Dorothy and he were evidently tired with their 
long tramp, or they would have seen more than " naked 
heights" to stimulate poetic fervour. But such as is the 
reference in the poet's posthumously published ReclusCy we 
are content to take it: — 

'* Bleak season was it, turbulent and bleak, 
When hitherward we journeyed side by side 
Through bursts of sunshine, and through flying showers ; 
Paced the long vales — how long they were! — and yet 
How fast that length of way was left behind, 
Wensley*s rich vale and Sedbergh's naked heights.'* 

It is this same cordon of naked heights which intensifies the 
rich verdure of the lower ground, and gives a sense of union 
and security to the little communities which rest securely at 
their feet. Nor are they always naked or inanimate. The 
golden * whins,' the purple heather, the graceful bracken, and 
the bright-green parsley-fern, meet us by turns to gladden the 
eye and wake a thousand pleasing associations. The charm 
of solitude on the topmost heights is increased, rather than 
diminished, by the wheeling flight of the plaintive lapwing; 
or, when startled by the too-near approach of footsteps, 

**The moor-cock springs on whirring wings 
Among the blooming heather.*' 

The crest of Ingleborough, though not far away, is shut 
off firom view in the valleys by the slopes of Whemside,. 



Digitized by 



Google 



196 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

whose few feet of extra elevation thus hide from us a much 
more striking mountain. Eastwards the broad mass of Baugh 
Fell — locally pronounced Ba' Fell or Bar Fell, that is Barf 
Fell, a name specially applicable to an isolated mountain — 
blocks the way, and seems to lack only a more decided cap 
of millstone grit to make it a most impressive object. On 
the north the long range of Howgill Fells, embracing Winder, 
immediately behind the town, Arant Haw and Calf, and the 
steep escarpment of weathered rocks at Cautley Crag, inter- 
poses between us and Westmorland. On the south the less 
elevated declivity of Holme Fell rises Dent-wards to Colm 
Scar, and the mountain ridge of Rysell separates the parallel 
valleys of Dent and Garsdale. 

The view from some of the hills is far-reaching and 
sublime. From Winder the jagged edges of the lake-land 
mountains* are seen commingled in wild confusion, while 
south-by-west the silvery sheen of Morecambe Bay arrests the 
roving eye. Higher still, up Arant Haw, fresh cause for admi- 
ration attends the climber's steps. A sea of sunlit heights 
and gloomy depths spreads far and wide ; over Rysell's ridge 
the little town of Dent slumbers peacefully beside the old 
grey Church; northwards the long green vista of the Eden 
Valley shoots into the heart of Westmorland ; and westwards 
we trace the Lune descending from its mountain home, in 
Ravenstonedale, through the Tebay gorge, until, under the 



•The following X^ble of Ordnance Survey heights in the neighbourhood may be 
useful for reference and comparison, it being premised that the measurements are in 
feel above sea-level, and that the "broad arrow" on Sedbergh church-tower stands 
at 413 ft. 



Whernside - 2,414 


Gragreth • - 


2,250 


Rysell - - 1,825 


Ingleborough 2,373 


Calf - - - 


2,220 


Winder- - 1,551 


Wildboar Fell 2,323 


Baugh Fell - 


2,216 


Holme Fell 1,148 


Swarth Fell- 2,235 


Arant Haw- 


1,989 


Firbank Fell 1,000 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 



197 



shelter of Firbank Fell and the bleak expanse of moorland 
behind, it receives the tribute of the Rawthey and its afflu- 
ents, and broadens out into a goodly river. 




From the part of Firbank Fell which overlooks the amphi- 
theatre in which Sedbergh lies, a splendid bird's-eye view of 
the radiating dales may be obtained. In one direction stretches 
Cautley — the upper reach of the Rawthey valley; in another 



Digitized by 



Google 



198 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Garsdale, from which the Clough unites with the Rawthey 
about a mile above the town ; and in a third Dent, through 
which the Dee finds its way to the same receptacle lower 
down. From the left of the spectator the Lune flows down 
the valley between Firbank and Howgill, and onwards to the 
right, till, joined by the Rawthey, it takes a straight course 
through fertile tracts to Kirkby Lonsdale. " Many times when 
" a schoolboy," says Professor Sedgwick, " I have gone, on a 
"half-holiday, with my class-fellows to those Firbank hills; 
" and we could select for ourselves the points of view which 
" at once brought before our sight five distinct valleys which 
"seemed to unite in a g^reat basin or central depression at 
" our feet, in the upper part of which the tower of Sedbergh 
" Church was seen in the distance. Down four of these valleys 
" the waters descend into the central basin. Through the fifth 
" valley they make their final escape down the lovely scenery 
" of the lower Lune. Should this note reach the sight of any 
" of my younger countrymen or countrywomen, I exhort them 
"to walk to the top of one of these Firbank hills (a very 
" easy task), and warm their hearts by gazing over this noble 
" cluster of dales." 

The topographical pen of Michael Drayton has noted as 
"a great bravery of Yorkshire," that the rivers which take 
their rise in it also reach the sea within its limits — 

•' Except some silly few out of her verge that flow 
So near to other Shires, that it is hard to know 
If that their springs be hers, or others them divide, 
And those are only found upon her setting side; 
Else be it noted well, remarkable to all, 
That those from her that flow, in her together fall.*' 

Our local streams are obliged to plead guilty to the soft 
impeachment of belonging to these "silly few;" and among 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 




Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 1 99 

** Dent, Rother, Rivell, Gret," which are afterwards enumerated 
as taking a westward course, we recognise the Rawthey and 
the Dee. The latter has got mixed up in the poet's brain 
with the name of the dale, but the Garsdale Clough is left 
unnoticed in any way. 

The Rawthey originates in a number of ^gills' which 
receive the overflow of the tarns on Baugh Fell, and then 
shortly afterwards coalesce. On its way through the seques- 
tered glen of Uldale it meets the Uldale Gill, and the 
streams, separately and unitedly, descend by a succession of 
cascades, of which two at least are of more than ordinary 
interest and beauty. For some distance the Rawthey forms 
the boundary between Yorkshire and Westmorland. Bending 
round Bluecaster it now adopts a south-westerly direction, 
and is soon joined by the Cautley Holme Beck — a rivulet 
which, draining the slopes of Calf, pours down the eastern 
end of the escarpment of dark Silurian rocks in a series 
of fine cataracts, representing a total fall of more than 
eight hundred feet. The lowest of the falls is by far the 
most considerable, but as seen from the highroad its gran- 
deur is much impaired by the high banks in front which 
greatly obstruct the view. To see Cautley Spout at its best — 
a sight well worth the effort — a stiff climb up the right bank, 
in the immediate vicinity of the fall, is necessary. Once 
arrived at the halting-place, indicated by a tree or two, we are 
able to look down, as well as upwards, and take a comprehen- 
sive survey of the mighty torrent as it thunders down the 
cliff. The broad ravine at the foot of the waterfall, scooped 
out by the ceaseless action of the brook, is romantic in the 
exfi'eme;,and the heart must be insensate which is not touched 
with feelings of awe and admiration in the contemplation of 
so much creative and destructive power. 



Digitized by 



Google 



200 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Returning to the road we pass Cautley Chxirch, a neat 
edifice built in 1857 ^.nd dedicated to St. Mark. The present 
vicar is the Rev. Robert Warren Wolseley, who recalls alike 
by name and consangxiinity our famous modem general. 

About a mile nearer Sedbergh we reach one of the tiniest 
of farm-houses, called Mackereth Hill. From this point the 
view of the opposite mountains is very striking. The symmet- 
rical smooth hill, known as Middle Tongue, runs straight up 
to the main bulk of the mountain mass, and as it reposes 
between the giant jaws of Knott and Brant Fell, exemplifies 
how apt could be the homely designations which our fore- 
fathers bestowed on salient natural features. The lane on the 
left leads up to Hebblethwaite Hall, a place of some importance 
in the past as the home of * statesmen' of the olden time. 
In the closing year of the last century the house was inhabited 
by Mr. Robert Foster, an Old Sedberghian and an intimate 
friend of the father of Professor Sedgwick. He was, too, a 
favourite with the youthful Adam, who dearly loved to hear 
him talk, for he had seen men and manners in foreign lands. 
He belonged to a Quaker family, and wore the distinctive garb 
in his later years, though in earlier days he had struck out a 
path which did not seem likely to end in the quiet domesticity 
of country life. He distinguished himself at the School as 
well by his eccentric playfulness as by his rapid progress ; 
but not liking the prospect of a humdrum life here, he decided 
upon seeking adventures abroad, betook himself to Liverpool, 
and started life as a common sailor. The Captain, struck with 
the boy's energy and superior manners, presently exerted his 
influence to get him a berth as a midshipman on board a man- 
of-war ; and in the West Indies he so much distinguished him- 
self in several encounters with privateers as early to gain the 
commission of lieutenant. "Once or twice," says the Professor, 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 



20I 



^during the intervals of active service he came down to 
' Hebblethwaite Hall, and it is said that he appeared at Brig- 
'flatts Meeting-house with his laced cocked-hat on his head 
^ and a cutlass by his side : perhaps to the suppressed admira- 
' tion of the younger Sisterhood ; but extremely to the horror 
' of the venerable and peaceful Fathers of the Society. Every 
' eflFort was made to win him back to a peaceful life. He loved 
' his friends and he loved the dales ; but he resolved to con- 
' tinue in that profession in which he had already won some 
' glory." But love conquers all things. On a later visit he 








met his fate, abjured the navy, married and settled at Hebble- 
thwaite Hall, re-read the classic authors, and sobered down 
into a genial country gentleman. In 1 821, while geologizing 
in that quarter, Sedgwick found him settled as a merchant, 
at Newcastle. The old man took his young acquaintance to 
call upon a friend. It was Thomas Bewick, the popular artist 
z 



Digitized by 



Google 



202 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

and engraver, and a man of humour withal ; and the interview 
was long and delightful to all concerned. Mr. Foster was the 
grandfather of Mr. Birket Foster, the accomplished artist, 
whose exquisitely finished pictures of rustic life and landscape 
are unsurpassed. This ancestral connection with our neigh- 
bourhood Mr. Foster strengthened by matrimonial alliance 
with the one artistic native family of which Sedbergh can 
boast. The late Mr. Dawson Watson was a bom amateur 
artist, and his sons, Mr. J. D. Watson and Mr. T. J. Watson, 
with the advantage of a regular professional training, have 
won for themselves an acknowledged reputation. 

The scenery about Hebblethwaite Hall and the now disused 
bobbin-mill, is romantic, and the well-wooded gill leads up 
through rocky ravines to a minute cave. But, for the best that 
we can show in this department, the reader must transport 
himself about a mile further across the fields, in the direction 
of the Garsdale road. Here the limestone admits of fissures 
of some respectability, where watercourses have penetrated the 
strata. Doukergill Cave will content a troglodyte who has 
not first sated his appetite for the cavernous with the subter- 
ranean wonders of the Ingleton district. Douker Gill — the 
gill that * douks,' or goes underground — has been transformed 
by perverse attempts at etymologfy into Dovecote Gill, but on 
native lips it retains its shorter and doubtless more authentic 
name. The chasm, where it enters on its underground course, 
much exceeds in rocky and arboreal picturesqueness the 
opening from which it issues. Hence the passage, about three 
himdred and twenty feet in length, is usually attempted firom 
the lower extremity for the sake of the better effect at the 
finish. Lithe and agile youth will thread the labyrinth in 
safety, but discreet, middle-aged corpulence will prefer to 
adhere to the outside, and to supplement a peep in at either 
end with a good imagination. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 



203 



We may now descend through Dowbiggin towards Sed- 
bergh, and a lane will bring us to the main road and Straight 
Bridge over the Rawthey, after which our course is clear. On 
the right we pass Stone Hall — previously described — and then, 
presently, Thorns, or Thorns Hall, a fine old mansion, the 
former residence of several Masters of the Grammar School. 




Sk orns 



After the decease of the widow of Dr. Bateman, in 1802, the 
estate was sold ; and the public advertisement describes it as 
**a handsome and roomy mansion, which for many years hath 
*'been the residence of the owner, with suitable oflSces and 
"outbuildings adjoining, all in complete repair. A large and 



Digitized by 



Google 



^04 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

" fruitful garden and orchard, a cottage, two water corn-mills, 
" drying kiln, malt-kiln and granary. The estate is deserving 
^Hhe notice of any gentleman fond of angling and country 
*^ amusements, and desirous of a retired situation, in a health- 
"ful and pretty valley, where the roads are turnpike and in 
^* good repair ; — or, from a command of water, it is well suited 
" for the establishment of some manufactory." The corn-mills 
have disappeared, leaving only faint traces of their existence ; 
and as we have escaped the establishment of a manufactory 
so near the town, the mansion remains an eligible private 
residence to this day. 

Close by, Castlehaw Tower rears its ancient head, and 
behind it is The Hill, or Hill Top, a farm-house of antique 
appearance, with high-pitched roof and diminutive windows — 
the last thatched farm-house, within my recollection, in the 
township ; but now swathed in unromantic felting in place of 
the more distinctive rural covering. The house has been the 
subject of many a sketch, both on account of its own pictur- 
esque effect, and because it was here that Professor Sedgwick 
lodged when he was a boy at the Grammar School. He thus 
alludes to the circumstance: — "Between three and four years 
** before I became a member of Trinity College I boarded, 
"along with three other boys, at a farm-house kept by a 
^* Quaker who was a near connexion of the Fosters of Hebble- 
"thwaite Hall. We were treated by the family with infinite 
"kindness, and our happy freedom made us the envy of our 
" school-fellows." An oak cupboard inside the house bears 
the date 1691, but the building is doubtless older. 

A short distance above this place the progress of the town 
is evidenced by the large reservoir which, in 1888, was added to 
the smaller one of 1876. When some defects in the construction 
have been remedied, and the reservoir has become absolutely 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 



205 



water-tight, we may expect that, even with the addition of the 
numerous houses now in process of erection, we shall be able 
to face a protracted drought with cheerfulness. Other modern 
utilities we have enjoyed for a longer period. A National 
School appeared in 1842, and a British School in the following 
year. We were illuminated with gas as far back as 1851, 
and in 1865 a Public Hall was built by shareholders at a cost 
of ;£700 ; and it has recently been augmented by the addition 
of ante-rooms. The Hall is in frequent request for public 
meetings and entertainments; and at fortnightly petty sessions 
minor offences and breaches of the Queen's peace are dealt 
with here by the local bench. 




The Congregationalists have a place of worship, erected in 
1828, and enlarged and furnished with a minister's house in 
1 87 1. The Wesleyan Chapel was built in 1864, and is octa- 
gonal in shape — a form which probably occurs more frequently 
than I have observed, seeing that Wesley himself considered 



Digitized by 



Google 



206 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

buildings of this description the best for hearing in, and 
advised his followers to construct all ** preaching-houses " 
according to this plan. He also recommended that " there be 
" no pews, and no backs to the seats, which should have aisles 
" on each side and be parted in the middle by a rail running 
" all along, to divide the men from the women" — arrangements 
which later and less ascetic generations, I imagine, have 
seldom approved of in their entirety. The minister's house 
was the gift of the Rev. William Moister, bom at Sedbergh, 
who after missionary labours in Africa and the West Indies, 
returned to spend the evening of his life among his native 
hills, and closed a long career of usefiilness on Aug. 9, 1891. 

The appearance of the town has been much altered of late 
years by frequent eruptions of shop-windows and modern- 
ised house-fronts; but two marked features — the irregularity 
and the narrowness of the streets — will remain as long as 
the older parts exist, and may excuse the supposition that 
the ground-plan was originally suggested by a game of chess 
in a tolerably advanced stage of evolution. Near the Public 
Hall the road bifiircates into Main Street and the Back 
Lane, which, after diverging to embrace a considerable part 
of the old town, are again connected by the attenuated bond 
of Finkle Street, leading from the Market Place in the 
direction of Dent. The market-square, denuded of its ancient 
ftimiture — the cross, the stocks, and, we may fairly presume, 
a bull-ring — besides its weekly use, supplies a convenient 
rendezvous for casual groups at all times, who enjoy the 
advantage withal of contemplating the variegated wonders 
of zoology — a White Hart, a Black Bull, and a Red Lion — 
on the neighbouring signboards. Here and there are narrow 
alleys and bits of domestic architecture which connect us with 
the past. Witness the passage from the Main Street into 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 



207 



Weavers' Yard, and the mighty chimney clinging to the back 
of an old house therein. The Folly — whose folly it originated 
in is not known — is an intricate short-cut between back and 
front streets; but the stranger who would see something of 
the vennels and back-premises which contented our forefathers 
is advised to go up by the Black Bull Hotel, into a narrow 
passage parallel with the Main Street, and then endeavour to 
find his way to Howgill Lane. If he fail in the attempt, as he 
is not unlikely to do, he will always be within reach of help, 
and need not be afraid. Such congestion as is here visible 
is not likely to recur; for the area of house-accommodation 
has recently extended itself westwards over building-plots 
sold by the Governors of the local Charities ; and the provision 
made by private owners for a new street, between the town 
and Winder, promises g^reat expansion in the future. 




Digitized by 



Google 



208 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



But enough of streets: let us forward into the country. 
If we follow the road a mile out of the town, we shall come 
to Brimhaw, near the railway station, a neat farm-house, the 
birth-place of a recent Lord Mayor of London, Sir James 
Whitehead. Indeed, the year 1888 was remarkable for the 
civic honours bestowed on natives of this district. Besides 
the successor of Whittington, we were represented by the 
Mayor of Manchester, Mr. Alderman Batty, a native of Dent; 




and by the Sheriff of Chester, Mr. Roger Jackson, who hailed 
from Sedbergh town ; thus proving that the practical good 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 



209- 



sense and shrewd business faculties of our northern scions, is 
capable of bearing excellent fruit when it finds a congenial 
soil to flourish in. 




BiRKS MiLU 

But we must retrace our steps by Busk Lane to the 
Rawthey, which has meanwhile been gliding unheeded past the 
old Vicarage — soon to be abandoned for a new one — and under 
Millthrop Bridge, to meet us again at Birks, where the Mill — 

A2 



Digitized by 



Google 



2IO 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



cotton once, bobbins and dyeworks now— with its weir and 
broad tree-shaded pool above and rocky river-bed below, and 




^h^ rF)^eii^2 of Ilic 

^ST^t^e^ drji lljic Bee* 



wood on the other side, dubbed " Elysian Shades," makes pic- 
tures which the pencil delights to limn. The footpath along- 
side the stream takes us past the confluence of the Rawthey 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 211 

and the Dee, with the old bridge across the latter in the dis. 
tance, and over the embanked railroad which cuts the plain in 
two. The venerable white-washed Meeting-house at Brigflatts 
momentarily arrests our notice, and we hurry on to Lord's 
Dub, a scene pleasing to the eye, but of melancholy interest 
when we remember how many victims its treacherous eddies 
and currents have drawn in to their destruction. In 1812 a 
catastrophe occurred at this place which has made it sadly 
memorable. A father and two sons were haymaking on the 
other side of the river. The sun was hot, and the limpid still- 
ness of the stream was cool and tempting. One of the boys 
stripped to bathe and plunged into the water, but soon showed 
signs of extreme distress. The other rushed in to his assist- 
ance, but was drawn in by his drowning brother beyond his 
depth. The distracted father hastened to the rescue, but only 
by similar mischance to share with his two boys their watery 
grave. Since then this fair deceiver has not been without its 
prey once and again ; but we take leave of it with our malison, 
and turn to happier thoughts. 

What mean the discordant sounds and the flapping of long 
white wings, among the trees across the stream ? A heronry 
is there, and it is evident that much of domestic interest, 
scarcely intelligible to the human mind, is being enacted in the 
realm of bird-dom. Perchance we may descry a * heerin sue ' 
(heron-shaw) standing motionless on the edge of the stream, 
and gazing dreamily into its placid depths. Possibly it is 
meditating on the problem of existence ; but an unsuspecting 
trout comes sailing by and is instantly transfixed, and the 
problem is satisfactorily solved for the nonce. Or perhaps, 
incautiously approaching, we break in upon the reverie too soon,. 

"And heron, as resounds the trodden shore, 
Shoots upwards, darting his long neck before.** 



Digitized by 



Google 



212 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



In the distance stands Ingmire Hall, a spacious castellated 
building, developed, by the families of Otway and Upton, into 
the beautiful and stately seat which we now behold. The 
fresh green ivy on the walls, the verdant expanse of even 
foreground, sheltered and adorned on either hand by foliage 
of varied hue, with an unimpeded outlook from the Hall, 
across the Rawthey to Holme Fell, present a scene of rural 
loveliness not easily surpassed. 




A little further and we are at Marthwaite New Bridge. 
The old one stood about eighty yards higher up the stream ; 
and in 182 1 the present bridge was built, and the course of 
the road altered, to avoid the steep descent. As in Cautley, 
so here, the Rawthey again separates us from Westmorland. 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 213 

We bid farewell to it, and take the road to Four Lane Ends, 
where an old stone guide-post, with an admonitory hand 
pointing down a lane towards the Lune, ominously exhorts 
us to " Beware of the River." We keep straight on, passing 
a fine avenue of full-grown trees which leads to a farm-house 
called The Hill — an estate which has been in the possession 
of the family of Willan for at least three hundred years. 
Professor Sedgwick has reminiscences of Richard Willan, 
who, while serving in the British navy, obtained leave to quit 
his ship and fight as a volunteer in the great battle on the 
Heights of Abraham. Like Robert Foster, of Hebblethwaite 
Hall, he in due time relinquished his adventurous life and 
returned to his quiet country home. He was a keen sports- 
man and an agreeable companion, and sometimes, on a holiday, 
would initiate his youthful friend into the mysteries of angling 
and grouse-shooting. 

At Killington New Bridge, deriving its nearly discarded 
epithet fi-om a similar cause to that of Marthwaite Bridge, 
we cross the Lune, and looking up the river behold a rocky 
reach with slumbrous pools of untold depth ; a piece of nature's 
handiwork which scarcely the most unaesthetic of mankind 
could pass without some sense of admiration. Pursuing our 
course we enter the road leading direct from Sedbergh to 
Kendal. Here a house, formerly an inn, and often still called 
"Scotch Jean's," in memory of a hostess fi-om beyond the 
border, retains its sign of the "Black Horse" above the door, 
being, in fact, the Upton crest — "a horse caparisoned upon a 
ducal coronet." Within a stone's throw is Capplethwaite Hall, 
once the seat of the Morlands, a family of some importance, 
now a farm-house pure and simple. Still on, for a mile or so, 
and we re-cross the Lune by Lincoln's Inn Bridge, where the 
view up-stream is admirable. The farm-house near by, to 



Digitized by 



Google 



214 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

which the title of Lincoln's Inn adheres, owes its designation 
not to any connection, real or fancifid, with the gentlemen of 
the long robe, but to the more prosaic fact of its having been 
a hostelry kept by a person of the name of Lincoln. 

Returning to Sedbergh and starting afresh up Howgill 
Lane, we see below us a fine stretch of well-wooded landscape 
broadening down to the Lune. Putting aside the suggestions 
of etymologists, who are apt to refine too much, we may, I 
think, understand Howgill and Lowgill, which are divided by 
the stream in the neighbourhood of the Crook of Lune, as 
correlative terms* and mutually explanatory. About a mile and 
a half from Sedbergh is a farm-house called Draw-well, from the 
nature of its water-supply. It is mentioned in Fox's Journal, 
and was the abode of John Blaikling, who adopted the Quaker 
doctrines in 1652, and preached in various parts of the country. 
He was several times lodged in York Castle, but managed to 
die at Draw-well in 1705, aged eighty, after the ministrations 
of half-a-century. Near Draw-well there is a field called 
Gallow Hill, possibly a relic of the feudal days, when certain 
local jurisdictions possessed the privilege of a gallows. At 
Howgill-head, where we march with Westmorland, there is 
also an eminence with the suggestive title of Gibbet Hill. 
The top is covered with a heap of stones, and I am told by 
natives familiar with the place, that shepherd-dogs, in search 
of hid treasure, occasionally exhume the bones of some long- 
forgotten malefactor. Why the people of Howgill should 
have been so liberally provided with the means of destroying 
their fellow-creatures, is hard to say ; but the thoroughfare to 
Borrow Bridge was once of more importance than it is now, 
and Gibbet Hill, we may observe, is conveniently situated 
for the accommodation of two counties. 

The term Borrens, as a field-name, occurs more than once 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 215 

in Howgill — an observation which may not be without its 
significance whenever our archaeological societies set them- 
selves to discover traces of Roman roads in this quarter. 
Farthing Croft, Breeches Field, and Gallipot, are quaint, but 
sound more modem. As I have touched on the subject of 
field-names, I may add a few curious ones from other parts 
of the township. In Cautley we have Sweet Comer, Five 
Pound Nook, and in singular, but possibly undesigned prox- 
imity. Hell Gill and Abraham's Bosom. In Dowbiggin there 
are Long Jammy, Sodom, and Jack's Butts — the latter, pro- 
bably, like Longmire Butts, in Marthwaite, reminding us of 
the time when the practice of archery was compulsory in 
every township. Other names of varied interest are Swine 
Ridding (frequent), Outrsike, Nova Scotia, and Forty Penny 
Farm. 

The little ivy-clad church of Howgill, with lancet-windows, 
built in 1838, and dedicated to the Holy Trinity, is prettily 
situated beside a streamlet, above a disused mill and below a 
salmon-leap and waterfall. The history of the Chapel is in- 
scribed on boards inside — an example worthy of more general 
imitation. From these we learn that the present edifice was 
erected during the incumbency of the Rev. Isaac Green, but 
that the older Chapel — now a cottage, on the other side of the 
stream — was founded and endowed by John Robinson, first of 
Howgill and afterwards of Kendal, yeoman, in 1685. He also 
endowed the school and made provision for the poor. The 
ancient parochial chapelries of Garsdale and Dent, which, till 
recently, paid a proportion of fees to Sedbergh, have, by virtue 
of modem legislation, obtained ecclesiastical independence ; 
Cautley, too, in the patronage of the Vicar of Sedbergh, is 
practically autonomous ; and now, lastly, Howgill, long a per- 
petual curacy in connection with the mother church, has 



Digitized by 



Google 



2l6 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



become a vicarage. The incumbency, vacant recently by the 
death of the Rev, Edward Powell, is held by the Rev. Louis 
Nixon. 



^^m^^ 







I might enlarge on the advantages of Sedbergh as a centre 
of beautiful scenery outside the district — its proximity to the 
Lakes, to the Ingleton Caves, and the Wensleydale * forces ' — 
but after this breathless scamper in search of the picturesque, 
which I trust none of my readers will take for a veritable 
route to be followed, but only as a thread of connection for 
remarks which otherwise would have been most disjointed, we 
will make our way to Beck Houses, and athwart the mountain 
to Black Force. A track, which it will be well to keep (for 
the hill-sides are steep and slippery) leads directly to the 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 217 

place. Right in the heart of the bleak solitude this gloom- 
enveloped gorge is, in some respects, the wildest, weirdest bit of 
scenery we have visited. The contorted rocks bear witness to 
some great manifestation of primeval forces, and the evident 
difficulty of ascent or descent by the watercourse, adds to the 
impressiveness of the scene. A farmer tells me that on one 
occasion on which he was present and assisting, it took eleven 
cart ropes, ten or eleven yards each in length, to recover a 
sheep which had fallen in at the bottom of the Force. A few 
years ago a hapless wight from the neighbourhood of Tebay 
was looking for his galloway hereabouts. Perhaps some distress 
of mind which the world will never know, or some unaccount- 
able impulse, suited to the time and scene, drove him to the 
deed ; but be this as it may, he hung himself with the halter 
intended for other use, on a stunted tree below the waterfall, 
in as strange a spot as the ingenuity of man could select for 
the final launch. His dog, sole witness of the act, went home 
before nightfall, but he returned not. On the morrow it 
showed evident signs of unusual distress and restlessness,, 
until it could induce some one to accompany it. Then it led 
the way straight to the fatal spot — faithful unto death. What 
a halo of romance would the genius of a Scott have spread 
around the incident ! 

Let these selected instances suffice to characterise the 
nature of our scenery. Of countless walks in shady lanes, of 
rambles by field and stream and hedgerow, where the foot- 
steps love to linger, I must say nothing. Like the unconsidered 
trifles of a sale-bill, they are too numerous to mention, toa 
varied for description. But a word or two on the geology 
and botany, so intimately connected with local scenery, may 
fitly close the chapter. 

Geologically, Sedbergh belongs to the great Silurian forma- 

B2 



Digitized by 



Google 



2l8 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

tion which predominates in the mountainous parts of Westmor- 
land, but, except in this particular district, does not appear 
to any considerable extent in Yorkshire. We are thus located 
among some of the oldest stratified rocks. The Coniston 
Grits — a member of this series — compose the great mass of 
the Howgill Fells, and show themselves in a fine section at 
Cautley Crag. They contain interbedded with them a fossil- 
iferous band of coarse sandstone, some twenty feet thick, which 
may' be traced in the gills between Winder and Hobdale Beck; 
otherwise these rocks seem, to the ordinary observer, barren of 
fossils, though the practised eyes of the Geological Survey 
officers have enabled them to detect a considerable number. 
At Helm Gill, in Dent, however, where the Lower Silurian is 
represented by a bed of dark blue limestone, specimens of 
corals and encrinites may be met with in and about the 
stream. Frequently the rocks of this system have been sub- 
jected to extreme lateral pressure, which has crumpled and 
contorted them in the way which I have spoken of as exem- 
plified at Black Force. The whole formation, however, comes 
to a full stop, and is blocked, by the Pennine Fault, which, 
skirting the base of Baugh Fell and crossing the Riggs and 
the valley of Dent, brings the Limestone and Yoredale Rocks 
of the Carboniferous system, on the east, into juxtaposition 
with the older Silurian strata. A patch of Red Conglomerate — 
the basement bed of this series — lies unconformably on the 
Coniston grits along the base of Winder to Burnt Mill, and 
forwards. Castle Haw is composed of it, and it may be 
observed in Settlebeck Gill and the moxmtain streams to the 
east of it, as well as at the confluence of the Rawthey and 
Hebblethwaite Gill. The higher mountains of the Carbon- 
iferous series, such as Baugh Fell, Rysell, Whemside, and 
<jragreth, are capped with Millstone Grit, broken through by 



Digitized by 



Google 



THE SCENERY. 219 

dislocating faults in the far-ofif ages, thereby facilitating the 
formation of our dales by erosion along the lines of least 
resistance. In aid of drainage, glacial action supervened to 
hollow out the course still more, and the rounded contour of 
the hills about Sedbergh is greatly owing to this circumstance. 
Ice-scratches, on Winder and Holme Fell, remain to testify to 
the rude behaviour of glaciers from Ravenstonedale and 
Garsdale, on their south-west passage to the Irish Sea, while 
similar indications, on the top of Rysell, show that a detach- 
ment of ice from the main body took a short-cut "over the 
hills and far away.*' 

Botanically the locality is richly endowed, as might be 
expected from the varied character of the soil and surface. 
Mountains, rivers, marshes, the open pasture and the shady 
woodland, contribute their several representatives to our local 
flora. I will merely mention a few of our rarer and more 
interesting plants. One of the happiest hunting-grounds of the 
botanist is in the neighbourhood of Cautley Spout. Here the 
Alpine Lady's Mantle reaches its southernmost limit ; the rare 
Chickweed Willow-herb and the Cut-leaved and Stony Saxi- 
frages haunt the banks of the stream ; the Parsley Fern is rife 
among the * screes'; and the delicately-pencilled Grass of 
Parnassus holds aloft its snowy bowl. The Yellow Mountain 
Saxifrage retains its footing in one of the gills near Winder; 
three species of Clubmoss — the Common, the Alpine, and the 
Fir — may sometimes be met with on one and the same hill-side; 
and English Stonecrop lingers in two or three habitats. Sun- 
dew and Butterwort (both of fly-devouring notoriety), Marsh 
Valerian and Marsh Cinquefoil, have their homes on the boggy 
ground; and Bogbean has found suitable quarters on Lang- 
stone Fell. * Blaeberries' grow from rocky crevices, and cran- 
berries affect the high moist land. The Cloudberry, disdaining 



Digitized by 



Google 



220 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

to consort with the denizens of the valley, has a lofty hill all 
to itself. * Knotberry/ or * Knoutberry/ was formerly a popular 
name of the plant, and Knoutberry Haw (2,200 ft.)> on Baugh 
Fell, remains its head-quarters still. The banks of the Rawthey 
yield Water Avens and Globe-flower, and, in addition, the Lune 
has Burnet Rose and Northern Bedstraw. Herb Paris is not 
unknown under the shade of trees, and in the fields the Wood 
and Meadow species of Geranium are equally common — ^the 
latter one of our finest wayside flowers. Mealy Primrose may 
be met with in the pastures of Cautley, while Spignel is 
confined to Howgill, where, in several places, it flourishes 
copiously. The *Heckberry' is, both etymologically and 
actually, the * hedge-berry ' of our roads and lanes ; and the 
Melancholy Thistle also hangs its solitary head here and 
there by the way. Of Ferns, the Oak and the Beech maintain 
their ground where mercenary uprooters have not yet espied 
them ; and a species of Film Fern is wont to refresh itself in 
the spray of one or two of our mountain waterfalls. 



Digitized by 



Google 



CHAPTER V. 



GARSDALE. 

*-s^ ARSDALE — the "dale of Garri," 
an unknown and rather hypo- 
thetical Saxon, whose name- 
sake is sometimes disinterred 
by etymologists at Gargra.ve; 
or, if it like you better, the 
"dale of garths" or enclo- 
sures — is separated from the 
cultivated fields of Sedbergh 
township by the breezy moor- 
land of Langstone Fell. It 
is drained, for the greater part 
of its length, by a stream 
which, rising on the north- 
eastern slope of Baugh Fell, below the sources of the 
Rawthey, flows through the subordinate valley of Grisedale, 
and then taking a westerly direction, abandons its name of 
Grisedale Beck for that of the Clough, which it retains till it 
is lost in the Rawthey, a mile above Sedbergh. Cloughy which 
rhymes with toughy we may take it, is the same word as cleuchy 
of Anglo-Saxon origin, well known in Scotland as denoting a 




Digitized by 



Google 



222 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

rocky ravine with a stream in it.* In some parts of its course 
the Clough justifies its title — at one time flowing under a 
beetling rampart of rocks, and at another cutting its way 
between limestone cliffs. 

Grisedale, a kind of appendix to the larger valley, is 
a secluded depression between Baugh Fell and White Birks 
Common, and within easy reach of Wildboar Fell, to which, 
indeed, as the ancient haunt of the grisCy or wild swine, it 
bears some affinity in name and nature. Here some ten or 
a dozen households form a little community of themselves. 
It used to be said that there was a road into Grisedale, 
but none out, which is not quite accurate; but it lies so 
distinctly out of the beaten track, that it is seldom visited 
by strangers. It was awakened by George Fox; and a dis- 
used Quaker Meeting-house and burial-ground show that he 
left his mark on the place. The recent erection of a 
Primitive Methodist Chapel in the dale, has again brought 
the visible signs of religion within view of the people — a 
continuation of the chapel-building movement begun by 
Jonathan Kershaw, of Lancaster, who settled in Garsdale 
two or three generations ago. He endeavoured to mcike the 
best of both worlds, selling tea by day, and preaching in the 
evenings, whenever and wherever he could get opportunity. 
His perfervid oratory was a great power in the dale, and 
he soon got a chapel erected, close to which he planted a 



* In illustration of the name, the reader may be reminded that, according to the 
old ballad, 

"Adam Bell, and Clim of the Clough, 
And William of Cloudeslee," 
were three noted outlaws in the North of England, of the Robin Hood type ; and Scott 
(lay of the Last Minstrei^ vi. 8), refers to the tradition that 

"old Buccleuch the name did gain 

When in the cloich the buck was ta'en." 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 



223 



cottage of his own, where he lived for the remainder of 
his days. He was buried in the little enclosure behind, it, 
and is designated on his headstone "the Apostle of the 
Dales." Two other chapels, both Primitive Methodist, have 
sprung up in the valley since his day; and if opportunities 
for religious worship are a fair criterion, Garsdale should be 
one of the best-evangelised places in the United Kingdom. 




Though everywhere conscious of the opposing heights of 
Baugh Fell and Rysell, Garsdale is agreeably broad and 
undulating for two-thirds of its length, but in the upper 
part it presents a narrower and wilder aspect. Here the 
stream, crossing and re-crossing the road, rejoices in a 
number of miniature waterfalls, which brighten the path of 
the traveller as he approaches Hawes Junction, the station 
on the Settle and Carlisle Railway, which has here pene- 
trated a region through which nothing but unlimited capital 
and indomitable energy could have carried it. Through 
Rysell a tunnel had to be driven, 140 feet below the surface. 



Digitized by 



Google 



224 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

through the solid rock; and driven it was. On this soli- 
tary, storm-swept height more than three hundred persons 
occupied a temporary village of roughly-erected huts, at an 
elevation of 1,300 feet above the level of the sea. Their 
communication with the valley below was by means of a 
tramway, six hundred yards in length, down a steep incline 
to the Garsdale road. During the construction of the line, 
in September, 1873, a tragical incident occurred at this spot. 
Eleven persons were descending, when the rope gave way, 
just as the waggons got to the steepest part of the incline 
and the trucks were preparing to rush down with fearful 
velocity. Presence of mind enabled one man to check 
the speed for a few seconds, by spragging one of the 
wheels, and nine succeeded in getting out safely; but two 
women, who still remained, were dashed to pieces, and a 
man lying asleep across the rails was decapitated in a 
moment, and never awoke again. The mangled remains of 
the three were interred in one grave, in Garsdale church- 
yard; and it was a memorable sight to behold the awed 
countenances of the workmen — not usually the most impres- 
sionable of mankind — who had assembled to take part in 
the last sad rites. 

But we must travel back to far other times than the 
epoch of railways, if we wish to study the internal economy 
of the dale consecutively. Sedbergh, as we have seen, was 
closely united to Coverham Abbey for two hundred years. 
Garsdale, too, had a connection with the same monastery, 
seeing that, according to the ecclesiastical survey of 1535, it 
paid lis. ^d. annually to the abbey for lands therein. But 
it had a much stronger association with the Abbey of 
St. Agatha, at Easby, near Richmond, which, according to 
thef same valuation, was in receipt of as much as ;^20 15^. td. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 




Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 225 

yearly from the dale — a much higher sum than it obtained 
from any other single place. A number of documents are 
given by Dr. Whitaker, from which we gather that the 
monks had a cell, or small dependency, near the Chapel of 
St. John Baptist, and that some of the fraternity resided 
there. Thus Thomas de Staveley confers on the Chapel and 
the resident canons certain land adjacent, which they were 
at liberty to enclose and cultivate. It is defined as over 
the bridge, as lying longitudinally between "Twursgill" and 
" Radtherforth/' and as having on the north a long heap of 
stones, and on the south the Garsdale beck. The heap of 
stones may well have disappeared long ere this; but if we 
may take Thursgill and Roger Pot as the modem repre- 
sentatives of "Twursg^ll" and " Radtherforth,'' we have a 
tract of land which suits the rest of the description. 

There was also a chantry in the Chapel, endowed by Ralph 
Fitz-AJan of Garsdale with two acres of meadow adjoining, 
and also with meadow between " Wyntrescale " and "Cote- 
gyle," as well as with a dwelling there. The endowment further 
comprised common of pasture in Garsdale and Grisedale, and 
a dwelling at " Bacunstalle," together with one hundred cows 
and their offspring for three years, and forty mares and 
their offispring for two years. These material advantages 
were to go to the Abbey of St. Agatha, on condition of 
providing a chaplain and furnishing him with all things 
necessary for the due discharge of his office. 

Then there is a confirmation by the chief lord, Roger 
de Mowbray, of all donations in Garsdale and Grisedale made 
to the abbey by benefactors, among whom, besides that 
of Ralph Fitz-Alan above-mentioned, occur the names of 
Adam de Staveley, Henry Fitz-Ranulph, Adam de Magneby, 
Helias Fitz-Radulph, and Jordan de Hebalde Thwaites 

C I 



Digitized by 



Google 



226 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

(Hebblethwaites). And that the lordship of the manor 
belonged to the abbey, is proved by a certificate of acknow- 
ledgment of fealty rendered by an early lord of Upsall to 
the abbot in the Chapel of Garsdale. 

This Chapel, of which I fear there is now no representa- 
tion extant, was, as I remember it, a long, low building, 
dimly lighted, and containing a heterogeneous assemblage 
of high-backed pews. There would, no doubt, be traces in 
it of pre-Reformation usages, but, if so, they disappeared 
when it was replaced with a brand-new modem building 
in 1861. 

There is an interesting memorial of the monks in the fine 
old house at East Rackenthwaite, where the remains of a 
priest's cell, still pointed out, incline one to think that it was 
the Priest-House referred to in old deeds. There is, however, 
another Priest-House in the dale, close to the old endowed 
school, and this is the one shown in the artist's sketch. The 
word "priest" is, even yet, commonly applied in the coimtry to 
the clergjrman; and as this house is known to have been 
occupied in past times by the curate of Garsdale, who taught 
school downstairs and dwelt aloft, it would no doubt be known 
as the Priest-House in consequence. Then, too, there is 
Paradise — or rather two Paradises, east and west — ^the former 
occupied by the Vicar, the Rev. D. T. All ton, as part of the 
glebe. The house stands high, but not dry, above the banks 
of the Clough, and is so inaccessible to quadrupeds that coals 
have to be carried thither in instalments of a sackful at a time.* 
A now deceased dignitary, after struggling up to the abode of 
the pastor, once playfully opined that the Garsdale Paradise 



* A more convenient site for a vicarage, near the school and church, and overlooking 
the *' priest-house," has lately been obtained. 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 



227 



must have received its name from the straitness of the gate 
and the narrowness of the way to it. But though the estate 
was made over to the Church by Isabell Garthwaite so lately 
as 1624, it is likely that it had been somebody's donation 
to the monks of St. Agatha's previously, who thereupon suit- 
ably enclosed it, and gave it the name of their paradise, park» 
or enclosure. 




Paradise. 



Digitized by 



Google 



228 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

At the time of the Dissolution, the abbey was paying to 
William Coke, chaplain of Fitz-Alan's foundation, the annual 
stipend of ;^4 13 J. 4//. The lands of the monastery, the 
patronage of the Church, and the manorial rights, were 
thenceforth transferred to the Crown. 

The chapel salary — the £4. i$s. 4^. above-mentioned, no 
doubt — continued to be paid under Edward VI. and Elizabeth, 
and this, augmented by an annual allowance of £$ from 
Lady Bowes, sufficed to seciure the services of a minister; 
but in 1615 the salary, for some reason or other, did not 
come to hand; and the inhabitants complained to Sir Fulke 
Greville, Chancellor of His Majesty's Court of Exchequer, 
accordingly. They represent themselves as being "distant 
"from their Parish Church six miles, or thereabouts, and a 
"verie dangerous passage of moimtain way [Langstone Fell, 
"to wit] as any in the north of England." They also plead 
general poverty, and earnestly hope that the salary is not 
going to be taken away, and themselves left without the 
ministrations of religion. The stoppage of payment seems 
to have been occasioned merely by a departmental misap- 
prehension ; and after the complainants had had their say, the 
salary returned to regular ways. 

The manorial rights remained with the Crown until the 
reign of James I. At Dandra Garth, an old-fashioned farm- 
house with evident indications of former importance about it, 
there is a chimney-piece with a curious coat-of-arms cut 
upon it. It consists of a lion rampant, within a border of 
thistles, and is suggestive of a connection with Scotland, 
either in reference to the King himself or to one of his 
retainers. Possibly it may have been regarded as the manor- 
house. In the course of alterations, at different times, many 
human bones have been dug up on the premises, as if an 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 229 

ancient burial-ground had been there. But I am told there 
are several farm-houses in the dale where similar discoveries 
of skulls and other bones have been made. About ninety 
years ago the then Duke of Cambridge is said to have visited 
Garsdale, for the purpose of shooting on the moors, and to 
have stayed at Dandra Garth. The clergyman happened to 
be both a crack shot and a good whist-player, and the duke 
found in him a congenial spirit. 

In 1 62 1 James I. sold the manor to Sir William Garway, 
Knight, a London citizen, who seems to have been given to 
picking up fragments of monastic property which came in 
his way.* The King reserved to himself the patronage of 
the living, which, as in other crown benefices of small 
amount, is dispensed by the Lord Chancellor. Shortly after- 
weirds Sir William and his sons, for the consideration of 
;^i>347 5-^- ick/-» granted the lordship of the manor, and 
several estates in it, to five Garsdale yeomen — Gilbert Nelson, 
James Nelson, Richard Garthwaite,t John Guy, and Richard 
Hobson. A divergence of opinion respecting this transac- 
tion speedily showed itself. The dalesmen asserted that the 
arrangement was intended to be for the benefit of the 
tenants in general, on the payment by them of their quota 
of the purchase-money, but Grilbert Nelson and his colleagues 
maintained that it was for the benefit of themselves alone. 
However, in 1626, the aggrieved tenants betook themselves 
to the High Court of Chancery, and produced a properly 



• He is mentioned by Lysons (** Environs of London," vol. iv., p. 341) as the 
purchaser of the manor and rectory of Kidbrook, a conventual estate, which had been 
sold by James I. to John Earl of Mar. 

t In Kendal Parish Church there is a brass plate with some verses in praise of 
"Alice, the wife of Roger Bateman, of Old Hutton, Clothier, daughter of Richard 
Garthwait, of Garssdale, Yeoman, who dyed the 25th day of March, 1637." 



Digitized by 



Google 



230 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

authenticated agreement to the above effect. The Court 
decreed the performance of the agreement, and mulcted the 
uncommunicative five in the costs of the suit. The tenants' 
were thus established in the joint-lordship of the manor, and 
were declared, in particulcir, to be entitled to equal benefit in 
the Priest-House messuage. 

The connection of Garsdale with the monasteries was 
brought to mind again after three hundred years, when, in 
1 84 1, the Tithe Commissioners confirmed the agreement for 
the commutation of the tithes. The dissolving Act of 3 1 Hen. 
VIII. exempted fi-om the payment of tithes such abbey-lands 
as had previously enjoyed this immunity. Two estates in 
Garsdale, called East and West Rackenthwaite, came imder 
this category, as having belonged to Coverham Abbey, and 
were declared by the Tithe Commissioners absolutely free 
fi-om the payment of tithe. Further consideration, however, 
considerably modified this decision; and by a separate and 
supplementary award, five years later, the Commissioners 
recorded that it was now held proved that the two estates in 
question were not absolutely exempt, but only contingently so, 
namely, when in the manurance or cultivation of the owners. 
The owners have, therefore, a choice of alternatives — and it 
is always a good thing to have two strings to one's bow — 
either to occupy and till the lands themselves and save 
£ I 5 J. td. a year, or to let them to somebody else, with the 
burden upon them. 

Though abbey-lands have been swallowed by moneirchs and 
courtiers, church-lands exist to a remarkable degree in these 
dales. At the time of the Tithe Aweirds, about 1840, there 
were, in the township of Sedbergh, estates, or portions of 
estates, belonging to eleven different benefices; in Garsdale, to 
eight ; and in Dent, to no fewer than twenty-six. The relative 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 23 1 

proportions will no doubt have varied since, but I think the 
circumstance may be taken to show that our forefathers were 
far from indifferent to the claims of religion. 

We may take one or two peeps at Garsdale in other aspects, 
before we proceed to its crowning title to distinction as the 
birthplace of remarkable men. About 1635, ^s that thirsty 
tourist, Richard Braithwait, the author of "Drunken Bamaby's 
Journal," who was bom in the neighbourhood of Kendal, and 
has left a monument in Catterick Church, was circulating home- 
wards, he passed through Garsdale, or **Gastile," as he calls 
it, in accordance with the local pronimciation still prevalent. 

"Thence to Gastile, I was dra^-ne in 
To an Alehouse neare adjoining 
To a Chappell; I drunk Stingo 
With a Butcher, and Domingo 
The Curat, who to my discerning 
Was not guilty of much learning." 

The inn was probably that in which Richard Jackson, 
Parliamentarian Master of Sedbergh Grammar School and 
Minister of Garsdale, used to take his ease a few years later. 
The farm-house close to the Church — Garsdale Hall — was an 
inn not long ago; but whether it was so used two hundred 
years back, is more than I can say. At any rate, Bamaby 
would now find it difficult to slake his thirst, either with 
" stingo " or any other less-powerful extract of malt, for there 
is no public-house in the dale. This defect — if defect it be — 
has probably combined, with the general break-down of clan- 
nishness, to put an end to a custom which was in vogue some 
years ago— that of *pitchering' or * canning' any outsider who 
had the audacity to lay siege to the affections of a Garsdale 
damsel. The procedure consisted in drumming on a tin can 
in front of the house where the enamoured interloper was 



Digitized by 



Google 






232 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

known to be ensconced, until he deemed it expedient to appease 
the discordant clamour with a gratuity, which was forthwith 
melted into ale at the inn. 

Bamaby's next stage was Sedbergh, where dissipation 
seems to have been rather at a standstill; and where, as he 
hints, his approximation to home made it risky for him to 
continue his carousals. One would fain hope that the "jolly 
boyes " referred to had nothing to do with the " richly royall " 
foundation of Edward VI. 

•* Thence to Sedbergh, sometimes joy-all, 
Gamesome, gladsome, richly royall ; 
But those jolly boyes are sunken. 
Now scarce once a year one drunken. 
There I durst not well be merry, 
Farre from home old Foxes werry." 

But I gladly take leave of the peripatetic toper, and 
proceed to chronicle greater things. 

Garsdale will long be remembered by the present genera- 
tion of inhabitants as the scene of a disastrous flood, which 
occurred on the 8th of August, 1889. For an hour and a half 
the rain poured down uninterruptedly in the elevated region 
of Grisedale, until the sudden influx swelled the Clough 
to terrific dimensions, and a raging torrent tore along the 
valley, sweeping every obstacle before its resistless might. 
Bridges were levelled like structures of cardboard, the road 
was destroyed to within a foot of the police-station, and trees 
and stone-walls were scattered in the wildest confusion across 
the fields. Inhabitants whose dwellings were caught in the 
fringe of the flood, fled in terror to the upper rooms, till its 
fury abated, and then found a layer of sand and mud in their 
best parlours, which it took the good housewives days to get 
rid of. The children in the National School were with difficulty 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 



233 



rescued from a watery grave, and the old Priest-House had 
a narrow escape from destruction. The sympathy of the 
public was aroused for the farmers whose crops had been 
almost ruined, and for those who had suffered in other ways, 
and subscriptions for their relief flowed in apace. The road 
for some miles was torn up; three county bridges were 
reduced to a shapeless wreck; and it took many months of 
labour, and much expenditure of the county funds, to undo 
the ravages of a calamity of which the traces will be visible 
for many a year. 




The dale has produced some men of mark; and one of 
them, at least, would have worthily occupied a niche among 
Dr. Smiles's examples of "Self-help." John Dawson, the 
younger of two brothers, was bom at the unpretending farm- 
house of Raygill, in 1734. The small estate belonged to his 
parents, William and Mary Dawson, who attained the height 
of their ambition when they beheld their elder son estab- 
lished in the respectable profession of an exciseman. The 

D2 



Digitized by 



Google 



234 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

patrimonial acres were too limited to provide means for 
two gentlemen, and John had to content himself with the 
position of a dale-farmer's son, and, amongst other things, 
to look after the sheep on the high moorland, where now 
the shrill whistle of the locomotive disturbs the long 
reign of rural simplicity. On the top of the fell, between 
Geirsdale and Dent, where the short green herbage betokens 
the presence of limestone, and a lime-kiln confirms the 
inference, there is a block of stone which the reader may- 
perceive marked on the six-inch Ordnance Map as " Dawson's 
Rock." Here the meditative youth used to take his seat, and, 
in the intervals of tending the flock, would ponder mathe- 
matical problems by the hour together. He had, indeed, 
received some elementary instruction under the Rev. Charles 
Udal, schoolmaster and minister of Garsdale; but as the Rev. 
Charles was of the flagellant order of dominies, and made 
more liberal use of the twigs of the tree of knowledge than 
was either pleasant or profitable to John, he quitted the school 
before he had made much progress. His thirst for knowledge, 
however, had not been thrashed out of him; and as his elder 
brother stuck to the school, John devoured his lesson-books 
at home with avidity. His occupations on the farm — cattle- 
serving, peat-cutting, shepherding— did not leave him much 
leisure for study, but he made the best of it. Stocking- 
knitting was then the employment of both sexes, when the 
out-door work was done, and John was allowed the privilege 
of spending his ** knitting-brass " as he liked. He invariably 
laid out his money in the purchase of books; and as mathe- 
matics was his favourite subject, the fi-esh volumes were 
chiefly of this complexion. Winter, when most time was 
spent indoors, he found his best season for the intellectual 
harvest ; and in the long evenings, with the light only of the 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 235 

peat-fire on the hearth, he would pore over his books until 
far into the night. How profound were his reflections may 
be estimated by the fact, that, as the result of his o^ti ex- 
cogitations, before he had seen any book on the subject, he 
invented for himself a system of Conic Sections, which, on 
reference to it in after years, he found to be essentially correct. 
The disadvantages, however, under which he worked, which 
might have been obviated at the cost of a few pounds of 
candles, nearly proved fatal to the continuance of his investi- 
gations. Protracted stooping, in his efforts to read by the 
dim light, brought on bleeding at the nose, which harassed 
him for a year, and so reduced his strength that his life was 
at one time despaired of. 

When he had thus stored his mind with mathematical lore, 
and reached the age of twenty-two, he became desirous of 
communicating to others what it had cost him so much applica- 
tion to obtain for himself. He set about acquiring pupils, and 
as his attainments had now made some noise in the neigh- 
bouring dales, he succeeded in doing so. Three Cambridge 
undergraduates first sought his assistance, of whom one was 
afterwards Dr. Haygarth (of whom presently), and another 
the Rev. Richard Sedgwick, the father of the famous Professor. 

His parents were now convinced that he had a soul above 
farm-work, and that some other occupation must be found for 
his talents. The business of an apothecary seemed the most 
feasible, and he was accordingly sent for three years as a 
general assistant to Dr. Bracken, a surgeon and apothecary of 
some repute, at Lancaster. The arrangement was a fortunate 
one for Dawson, who found in the doctor's house congenial 
society and sympathy, and opportunities of continuing his 
mathematical studies, as well as of acquiring a good know- 
ledge of some branches of natural philosophy. 



Digitized by 



Google 



236 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

His three years completed, he returned to Garsdale; but 
no situation of a suitable character presenting itself, he settled 
at Sedbergh and commenced business for himself, as an 
apothecary. He was without a medical diploma, and this 
defect he determined, if possible, to remedy. By dint of hard 
work and spare living, by taking pupils and by attention to 
his business, in a few years he had scraped together a hundred 
guineas, which he stitched in the lining of his waistcoat, and 
then, staff in hand, walked the whole of the way to Edinburgh, 
to enter himself as a medical student, and to comply with the 
conditions necessary for obtaining the coveted parchment. A 
little oatmeal went a long way in Scotland, and the hardy 
Garsdalian made his hundred guineas last out until, armed 
with his diploma and his trusty staff, he retraced his steps, 
and was welcomed by his friends as a duly accredited and 
full-blown surgeon. He now resumed the practice of his 
profession with unremitting assiduity, but still found time to 
devote to mathematical pupils. His tuition-fees were far 
from exorbitant — 5^. a week was the sum which one of his 
pupils records as paid by himself — ^but his expenses were light ; 
and when he had accumulated a store of three hundred 
guineas, he again determined to spend it in perfecting his 
professional knowledge. On this occasion he directed his 
steps to London, walking and availing himself of the stage- 
waggon by turns, and carrying his earnings secured in his 
waistcoat-lining, as before. Reputation, like most other good 
things, has its drawbacks, and he found that he could not 
make the guineas hold out as they had done at Edinburgh. 
Dr. Waring, the Lucasian Professor at Cambridge, sought him 
out, and his example was followed by other persons of dis- 
tinction. These distractions meant death to the guineas, but 
he contrived to get through one good course of surgical and 
medical lectures. 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 237 

Dr. Dawson, laden with such distinction as was implied in 
the wider professional knowledge acquired during his sojourn 
in the great metropolis, returned to his Sedbergh practice — 
but only to find that his business, which he had left in charge 
of a substitute, had been grievously neglected. His presence, 
however, soon put matters to rights, and his marriage, in 1767, 
to Ann Thimbeck, of Ellers, in Middleton, secured for him 
the comforts of a settled home. The union was a happy one, 
and an only daughter remained after the death of her mother, 
in 1 81 2, to cheer the old man's declining days. 

His practice at Sedbergh was at once serviceable to his 
countrymen and profitable to himself. Cambridge under- 
graduates came down to him in the summer months of the 
long vacation, and his reputation as a mathematician was 
constantly on the increase, as fresh batches of distinguished 
pupils traced their success at the university to the instruction 
of their Sedbergh tutor. About 1788 he relinquished his 
medical practice altogether, and devoted himself entirely to 
his first and dearest love — mathematical teaching. No fewer 
than eleven Senior Wranglers* passed through the hands of 
this remarkable self-taught man. His first Senior Wrangler 
came out in 177 1, and then, though many of his pupils stood 
very high, the supreme distinction was absent till 1781, after 

* Dawson's Senior Wranglers have been identified as follows : — 
1771, Starkie, St. John's; 1781, Ainslie, Pembroke; 1786, Bell, Trinity, bom at 
Kendal, a celebrated Chancery Barrister and King's Counsel, familiarly known as 
" Jockey Bell ; " 1789, Miller, St. John's ; 1792, Palmer, St. John's, Professor of Arabic ; 
I793> Harrison, Queen's; 1794, Butler, Sidney Sussex, afterwards Head Master of 
Harrow and Dean of Peterborough, and father of Dr. Butler, lately Head Master of 
Harrow, and now Master of Trinity Collie; 1797, Hudson, Trinity, afterwards Vicar 
of Kendal; 1798, Sowerby, Trinity; 1800, Inman, St. John's (of whom below); 1807, 
Gipps, St. John's. Dawson is said to have wished for one more Senior Wrangler to 
complete the dozen, but Bland (supr^^ p. 108), on whom he had fixed his hopes, was 
ouly second (1808). 



Digitized by 



Google 



238 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

which its occurrence was no unusual circumstance. Besides 
the pre-eminent eleven, there were of course many others who 
stood but little below them ; and there were some who obtained 
an honourable reputation in other walks of life. 

Dr. Thomas Gamett,* bom at Casterton and brought up 
at Barbon, first Lecturer at the Royal Institution of Great 
Britain, and one of the earliest to popularise scientific know- 
ledge among the masses, was apprenticed to Dawson in his 
early years, and was greatly indebted to him for sympathetic 
encouragement and instruction; and Dr. George Birkbeck, 
bom at Settle, the originator of Mechanics' Institutes, was a 
Dawsonian also. 

Dawson read every book of note on his favourite science 
as it came fi*om the press, and kept himself thoroughly abreast 
of the latest mathematical discoveries. The activity of his 
mind led him, occasionally, into learned discussion. With 
characteristic modesty he always concealed his name, though, 
sometimes, the anagrammatic signature of *'Wadson" was quite 
transparent to his friends. But whether he was combating the 
notions of Dr. Stewart respecting the distance of the sun, or 
controverting the Rev. Mr. Wildbore's views about the evacua- 
tion of vessels in motion, or correcting Mr. Emerson on the 
subject of fluxions, or debating with Dr. Priestley the high 
theme of philosophical necessity, John Dawson always appeared 
to advantage. He continued to take pupils until 1815, when 
the manifest decay of his faculties showed that his work was 
done. 

Professor Sedgwick writes of him: — 

" I knew him well in his honoured old age ; for I was his pupil during 
"three successive summers of my undergraduate life; but it is hard for me 

• His accomplished daughter, Catherine Grace Godwin, was interred at Firbank, 
where there is a headstone to her memory in the churchyard. 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 



239 



' to do full justice to the head and heart of my dear old master. Simple 
'in manners, cheerful and mirthful in temper, with a dress approaching 
' that of the higher class of the venerable old Quakers of the dales, with- 
* out any stiffness or affectation of superiority, yet did he bear, at first sights 




Dr. Dawson. 

{A/igr thg Engraving by Bumey from a Painting by Alien,) 

•* a very commanding presence, and it was impossible to glance at him for 
'• a moment without feeling that we were before one to whom God had given 
** gifts above those of a common man. His powerful projecting forehead 



Digitized by 



Google 



240 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

*' and well-chiselled features told of much thought ; and might have implied 
" severity, had not a soft radiant benevolence played over his fine old face, 
"which inspired his firiends, of whatever age or rank, with confidence and 
"love." 

He died full of years and full of honour, and was interred 
at Sedbergh. In the Church a much-admired bust, by the 
sculptor Sievier, preserves his features; and an inscription 
beneath, the composition of John (or "Jockey") Bell, one of 
his Senior Wranglers, tells nearly all that remains to be said : 

** In Memory of John Dawson, of Sedbergh, who died on the 19th Sept., 
'* 1820, aged 86 years, distinguished by his profound knowledge of mathe- 
"matics, beloved for his amiable simplicity of character, and revered for 
" his exemplary discharge of every moral and religious duty. This monu- 
** ment was erected by his grateful pupils, as their last tribute of affection 
" and esteem.** 

Two portraits were painted by skilful artists. One by 
Joseph Allen, sold to Mr. Leigh, of Leeds, represents the 
mathematician in the height of his vigour, explaining a 
problem to a pupil. It was reproduced as an engraving, by 
W. W. Bumey, and published in 1809, and is inscribed "To 
fiiends and pupils of Mr. Dawson." From this is taken the 
illustration in this book. The other, by William Westall, a 
connection of the Sedgwick family, depicts the subject at a 
more advanced age, resting in a contemplative attitude on a 
hill-side overlooking the town of Sedbergh. A photograph 
of this likeness, presented by Professor Sedgwick, adorns the 
walls of the Sedbergh Reading Room. 

We pass on to notice two other distingfuished Garsdalians, 
a Doctor of Medicine and a Doctor of Divinity — ^John Hay- 
garth and James Inman. Dr. John Haygarth wcis one of the 
three earliest pupils of Dawson. He was bom in 1 740, at 
Swarth Gill — where the initials above the porch, I. H. I. (17 12), 
stand for John and Isabella Haygarth — and educated at 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 24 1 

Sedbergh Grammar School, whence he proceeded in due 
course to St. John's. He had an extensive practice as a 
physician, first at Chester and afterwards at Bath, where he 
died in 1827, aged eighty- seven. He inaugfurated a much- 
needed reform in medical practice, by separating infectious 
diseases from public hospitals, and establishing fever wards. 
He was the author of several medical works which attracted 
much notice at the time; and his treatise " Of the Imagina- 
tion as a Cause and Cure of Disorders of the Body," was 
considered a valuable contribution towards the elucidation of 
a confessedly mysterious and difficult subject. Outside his 
profession, and as a philanthropist, he was greatly interested 
in the improvement of Free Schools in the North, and in the 
formation of Savings Banks. He paid frequent visits to his 
native dale, for the inhabitants of which he always enter- 
tained the warmest aflfection. He possessed several estates 
in Garsdale; and the plantations above Swarth Gill and 
opposite Garsdale Hall, which have yielded to the axe in 
recent years, but are well-defined still, owed their origin to 
his forethought.* 

James Inman, an old Sedberghian, and one of Dawson's 
Senior Wranglers, was bom in 1776, at Garsdale Foot, a 
dwelling which preceded the present farm-house, high above 
the Clough, on the slope of Baugh Fell, and overlooking the 
basin of Sedbergh in one direction, and the heath-clad ridge 
of Langstone Fell in another. His father — a substantial yeo- 
man, belonging to a family which has long flourished, and 
still flourishes, in the dale — dying suddenly, without a will, 
the youth, then finishing his course at the school and expecting 
shortly to enter St. John's, beheld his prospects immediately 

• There is a short memoir of Dr. Haygarth, with a portrait, in the Gentieman's 
Magazine for October, 1827. . . 

E2 



Digitized by 



Google 



242 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



blighted ; and he had actually set out on foot to seek his 
fortune wherever it might be found, when his elder brother 




Dr. Inman. 
overtook him, and promising to see him through college, 
prevailed on him to return. This fraternal consideration was 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 243 

abundantly justified by the distinguished career of the young 
collegian, who carried off the Senior Wranglership in 1800, 
and the First Smith's Prize immediately after. What was to 
be his subsequent course? At first he thought of a mis- 
sionary life in the East; and with this object in view, he 
spent some months in Malta, in the study of Arabic. Had 
not Napoleon's descent on Syria, and the unsettled condition 
of Europe, rendered the desigfn inopportune, he might perhaps 
have anticipated by a few years the heroic self-devotion 
of his friend Henry Martyn. But owing to this untoward 
change in circumstances, he returned to England, and, on the 
recommendation of the University, accepted the vacant post 
of astronomer on board H.M.S. Investigator^ which was 
engaged, under the command of Captain Matthew Flinders, 
in a scientific exploration off the coast of Australia. He 
reached Port Jackson in 1803, but found Captain Flinders 
on the point of abandoning his vessel, on account of its 
unseaworthy condition. The officers and crew were trans- 
ferred to another ship; but as Inman did not immediately 
join them, he providentially escaped the shipwreck which 
overtook them a few days later. He sailed, however, in the 
vessel sent to their assistance, and after they had been 
picked up, accompanied them to Canton, where they were 
distributed over the homeward-bound East India Companjr^s 
fleet, Inman being on board one of the ships, and Franklin, 
of Arctic celebrity, on another. It happened that a French 
fleet was cruising about the Malay Archipelago, on the look- 
out for prizes, and hearing of the approach of the merchant- 
men, it attacked them off Pulo Aor, on February 15th, 1804. 
Inman was placed in command of the Lascar pikemen on board 
the Warley; and the trading vessels were handled so admirably 
by Commodore Sir Nathaniel Dance, that the French Admiral, 



Digitized by 



Google 



244 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Linois, concluded they were warships in disguise, and decided 
to abandon the enterprise — an error of judgment for which 
Napoleon was not slow in calling him to a strict account. 

The experience of nautical matters gained in this extensive 
voyage, was of the greatest advantage to Inman afterwards, 
and, in a measure, determined for him his future career. His 
Log testifies to the constant interest which he took in naviga- 
tion and the management of a ship; and in his instructions 
to his pupils afterwards, he always insisted on the necessity 
of a thorough acquaintance with nautical instruments. Soon 
after his return he was elected to a fellowship at St. John's, 
and took holy orders. Two years later, in 1807, the Admiralty, 
wishing to improve the education of their officers, estab- 
lished the Royal Naval College at Portsmouth, and appointed 
Mr. Inman as Principal, with the title of Professor of 
Mathematics. At his suggestion, in 18 10, the College was 
supplemented by the establishment of a School of Naval 
Architecture, of which, also, he was the first Principal. The 
text-books on navigation, then in existence, were of a meagre 
and unsatisfactory description; and for naval architecture there 
was absolutely none in English. The Principal set himself 
resolutely to supply the want, by translating fi-om the French 
Chapman's great work on naval construction; and his version 
was issued, with notes and explanations, through the Cam- 
bridge University Press, in 1820. Ten years previously he had 
published an elementary treatise on "Arithmetic, Algebra, 
and Greometry," for the use of his classes; but the work by 
which he is best known, and upon which he bestowed most 
labour, wcis his "Navigation and Nautical Astronomy," with 
elaborately-constructed "Tables," published in 182 1, shortly 
after he took his degree of D.D., and which remained in use 
in the Navy for forty years. Indeed, the " Nautical Tables," 



Digitized by 



Google 



GARSDALE. 245 

with additions, are still on the Admiralty's list of necessary 
articles for the equipment of every naval officer. Both books 
were extensively borrowed from by continental writers, and 
an acknowledgment was made for Russia by the Emperor 
Nicholas, during his visit to England, in 1844. Dr. Inman 
was a prolific author, and treatises on Trigonometry, Naval 
Gunnery, and similar subjects, followed each other at frequent 
intervals. In 1839 the system of appointing Naval Instructors 
to Her Majesty's ships was introduced; and after thirty-two 
years' service Dr. Inman retired, though he still continued to 
preside over shipbuilding committees at Portsmouth. **To 
Inman's labours," says Professor Laughton, " was largely due 
the improvement in English shipbuilding during the first half 
of the present century." 

" He married," adds his grandson, the Rev. H. T. Inman, 
to whom I am indebted almost entirely for the facts embodied 
in this account of the last of my Garsdale worthies, — "he 
" married Mary, daughter of the Rev. Richard Williams, Vicar 
"of Oakham, a descendant on tlie maternal side from the 
"mother of Sir Isaac Newton, by her second marriage, and 
"died at Southsea, February 17th, 1859, aged eighty-three." 



Digitized by 



Google 



/ 




^^^c^^^^^ 



CHAPTER VI. 

DENT. 

EDBERGH, Garsdale, and Dent — such 
is the order of precedence which 
I have found it convenient to 
adopt; but it must not be supposed 
that the last-mentioned valley is 
necessarily the least deserving of 
notice. Garsdale is in a line with 
Sedbergh, and its relations with 
us have been direct and multiform. 
Dent, on the other hand, is separated from us by the anti- 
clinal of the Riggs, is a valley complete in itself, and hcis 
developed its institutions in a more independent, and in some 
respects in a unique, fashion. It therefore stands by itself, 
and is reserved, as it deserves to be, for separate treatment. 

There was a time when Dent was even a more important 
place than Sedbergh. At the beginning of this century its 
population was greater; and, until 1863, it W2is a polling- 
station, to which Sedberghian voters were obliged to resort to 
record their preferences at the county elections. Bigland's 
"Topography of Yorkshire" (18 19) devotes at least half a 
page to Dent, and only two sentences to Sedbergh, and 
admiringly speaks of Dent as " a terrestrial Paradise," and as 
recalling the description of the Happy Valley in " Rasselcis." 
Apparently, Sedbergh presented nothing worthy of notice at 
that time; and even Allen's "History of Yorkshire," in 1831, 
while repeating the "terrestrial-paradise" description of 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT, 247 

Dent, declares that the town of Sedbergh does not contain 
anything of particular interest, except the Grammar School. 
One thinks that the author might at least have had a kind 
word for the Church; but perhaps this method of snuffing 
us out is on a par with the other statement, which relegates 
Roger Lupton to the reign of Edward III. ! But if Sedbergh 
is looking up now, while the material condition of Dent is 
less prosperous than of yore, we may still give due honour 
to the dale which hcis been a centre of industry and enterprise 
in the past, the habitation of self-respecting and respected 
statesmen, and the birthplace of a scientist of European 
celebrity, in the reflected glory of whose fame we ^re all 
glad to participate. 

Dent is a curt little name which has given some trouble 
to the etymologists. Dr. Whitaker assures us that ** Dent is 
"unquestionably the Denton of Domesday, surveyed under 
"the ^ Terra Alani CamitiSy though far separated from Tees- 
"dale by natural boundaries, as being the property of the 
" same grantee, the ancestor of the Fitz-Hughs, who retained 
"it at least four centuries after that period. Denton is the 
"town of the cUne or valley." Assuming this to be the 
case — and the probability is gfreat — ^we have still to account 
for the truncated condition in which the name has appeared 
immemorially. I see nothing for it but to make a bold 
suggestion, which must be taken for what it is worth. I 
imagpine — and imagpination often goes a very long way in 
matters of et3rmology — that the final ton grew into toTvn^ and 
that the first syllable, ending in «, readily attached to itself 
an excrescent dental, when the whole would appear as ' Dent- 
town.' But if * Dent-town ' meant the village of Dent, what 
could be taken to represent the rest of the valley so fitly as 
*Dent' itself? 



Digitized by 



Google 



248 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

In continuation of the history of the manor, it is to be 
noted that, after it had long rested with the Fitz-Hughs, it 
came into the hands of the Sovereign, and the several estates 
were held directly from the Crown. As prosperity asserted 
itself, the tenants became desirous of the enfranchisement of 
their lands; and, in 1629, the manor was made over by Letters 
Patent to certain of them, in trust for the rest. The arrange- 
ment, probably in consequence of the unsettled condition of 
the times, was not completed, and during the Commonwealth 
an individual of the name of Parsons enjoyed the manorial 
rights. At the Restoration Charles II. resimied his own, and 
granted the manor, with all its rights, to Sir Allen Apsley, 
who had faithfully attended the King in his exile ; whereupon, 
in 1670, Sir Allen, in turn, sold the manor to Richard Trotter, 
of High Hall, and others, in trust for the tenants in general. 
As in the case of Garsdale, the trustees seem to have been 
reluctant to relax their grip on the deposit, but the tenants 
succeeded in getting their due in the end, and the land 
became freehold, as it is at this day.* 

The lower part of the dale is a broad, beautiful, and well- 
wooded landscape, with its horizon determined on one side 
by Rysell, and on the other by Holme Fell and the fine 
precipice of Colm Scar. In the middle of this fertile alluvial 
expanse, the Dee — one of the numerous streams of this name 
which our Celtic ancestors invested with sacred attributes, 
and designated accordingly — gently winds its devious course, 
awaking at times, however, with unwonted energfy, and, in 
spite of restraining banks, overflowing the adjacent fields. 

*The later history of the manor is abridged from Professor Sedgwick's "Memorial," 
and was due, in the first instance, to the Rev. William Matthews, the first Incumbent of 
Cowgill, who had had a legal training and was intimately acquainted with pie title- 
deeds of lands in his Chapel ry. 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 



249 



The road, unfortunately, is hilly, though much improved in 
this respect by the deviation, 1,122 yards in length, made by 
the late Miss Elam in 1876, of which the traveller is apprised 
by an inscribed granite memorial, erected by gfrateful land- 
owners and inhabitants by the side of the road. Still more 
recently another welcome deviation, in front of the residence 
of Mr. R. Burra, the first County Councillor for the Ewecross 
division of the West Riding, has contributed in some degree 
to the same desirable result; though most persons will still 
admit that there are stiff climbs enough, and to spare. 




remaining for the levellers of a future age. Gate — the hand- 
some mansion of Mr. Burra— deserves a passing recognition 
as a recent alteration, restoration, and development in a 
massive style, admirably in keeping with — though, of course, 
far surpassing — some of the older and more important houses 
in the dale. On the opposite side of the valley is Brackens 
Gill, which, in the rainy season, exhibits a far-conspicuous 

F2 



Digitized by 



Google 



250 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

Streak of white foam, as the water is dashed from ledge to 
ledge down the side of Holme Fell. Nearer the town we 
skirt a hill, on the top of which is seated, out of sight, the 
ancient cluster of homesteads called Gawthrop. Then passing 
through and ignoring the town for the present, we find that 
after sending off, laterally, the subsidiary valley of Deepdale, 
between Gragreth (2,250 ft.) and Whemside (2,414 ft.), up the 
steep ascent towards Kingsdale and its famous Yordas Cave, 
the dale, eleven miles long, gradually contracts until it finally 
terminates in a gorge and a mountain-pass. Here the 
scenery, like that of Caledonia, is "stern and wild"; and as 
the trains on the Settle and Carlisle Line scud along through 
tunnels and over viaducts, hundreds of feet above the road, 
we are brought face to face with some of the greatest 
engineering triumphs of modem times, whereby an aerial 
region has been opened out, which, fifty years ago, would 
have been deemed inaccessible to the iron steed. 

Turning up by Lea Yeat (Gate) past the old Quaker 
Meeting-house — now considerably modernised in the course of 
successive repairs, but owing its origin to the preaching of 
George Fox, — a road, or rather an apology for a road, winds 
up the breast of the mountain to Dent station. The traveller 
who here sets "a stout heart to a stee brae," and hastens, 
as all Englishmen nowadays do hapten, to catch his train, 
had needs be encumbered with but small appurtenances of 
personal luggage. Once arrived on the breezy platform, he 
may have time to observe the provision of gigantic palisades 
of uplifted sleepers, intended to check the snowdrifts which 
at times accumulate alarmingly in this region, and have 
been known to delay imprisoned passengers for hours. 

But we do not want to take the train, so, if you please, 
we will descend to the neighbourhood of the Dee once more. 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 25 1 

Terrible storms of rain and snow have been experienced now 
and again in this part of the dale, when the stream, unable 
to carry oflf the downpour in its ordinary channel, has spread 
devastation all around. A fearful thunderstorm and flood 
occurred on July 9th, 1870, during the construction of the 
railroad. Suddenly an ominous canopy of black clouds 
lowered over the tunnel at Dent-head. Flash succeeded 
flash, and "Heaven's dread artillery" reverberated fearfully, 
when, with scarce a minute's warning, the rain began and 
continued to descend, as if from a water-spout, for two hours 
unceasingly. Five miners were working in the tunnel, about 
forty yards from the entrance, when the sudden inrush of 
water filled the heading before two of them could escape. 
When assistance arrived, one brave fellow swam up the 
tunnel, now filled with water to within two feet of the roof, 
and found one of the unfortunate workmen — ^the other had 
sunk already — standing with only his nose and the top of his 
head above the water, and his fingers applied to his ears, to 
keep, as he afterwards expressed it, the water out of his head. 
The swimmer returned for a raft, and pushing it up the tunnel 
before him placed the poor fellow, more dead than alive, upon 
it. In the valley three stone bridges and four wooden ones, 
with miles of highroad, were washed away. The spectacle 
of a regatta of uprooted trees, balks of timber, and railway 
plant of all descriptions, interspersed with carts, wheelbarrows, 
and even pigs and poultry, would have been picturesque and 
amusing if it had not been so terribly pathetic and real. One 
little fellow was caught by the flood and carried away, and 
next morning a tiny hand, projecting from beneath stones 
and sand, seemed like a mute appeal to Heaven for the 
help which it was too late for man to render. 

The mention of this flood naturally reminds us of an 



Digitized by 



Google 



252 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

earlier calamity of a somewhat similar kind, which Professor 
Sedgfwick's graphic account, in his " Memorial," has rendered 
in a manner historical. On that occasion, however, it was 
frost and snow, in combination with water, which did the 
mischief. In January, 1752, an enormous fall of snow follow- 
ing a hard frost, had choked the gills and packed together a 
huge obstruction, which, when the thaw set in and the rain 
fell copiously, had to be dislodged and driven down bodily 
before the stream could find its natural vent. These masses — 
avalanches in miniature — were forced down as with the noise 
of thunder into the plains below, overwhelming everything 
before them. One house, near Dale-head, was levelled to the 
ground, and seven persons in it were crushed to death. The 
incident was impressive, and the Rev. Mark Rumney, who 
wcis Curate of Dent at the time, hcis recorded it, in Latin, in 
the register of burials. Professor Sedgfwick, who heard the 
story from his father, who, as a boy of sixteen, had visited 
the scene of the disaster, infers, from the use of the local 
term *g^ll-brack' to describe the phenomenon, that it must 
have been well known in the past history of the dale. 

Black marble has been quarried in Dent, as well as cut 
and polished at the Stone-House works, for considerably over 
a century. It crops out near the present imposing viaduct, 
in a bed fourteen inches thick. This is called "the good bed," 
and when free from shakes, white-thread, and fossils, is of a 
very superior quality. Under this seam lies the millstone 
bed, from which large millstones, 7^ feet in diameter, suitable 
for grinding powder, have been obtained. Very beautiiid fossil 
marble of the encrinital pattern, l3dng at an elevation of 
1,600 or 1,700 feet, has also been found in many places in 
the dale, and is now quarried at ITie Binks, on Great Colm. 
Since the removal of the heavy tariff on imported marbles. 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 255 

foreign competition has seriously depressed the native industry; 
and the beautiful Italian styles are now obtainable at a price 
so moderate, as almost to ruin the market for the English 
product. 

As we descend the valley by the road, which is always 
within sight or sound of the river as it flows over its fantas- 
tically worn limestone bed, the little bridge over Cowgill 
Beck informs us that it was "repaired at the charge of the 
West Riding, A.D. 1702." Immediately after crossing it we 
are at St. John's Church, now a vicarage under the care of 
the Rev. Robert Pickering, but originally built, in 1837, as a 
Chapel-of-Ease to Dent. Previously, an old chapel, with a 
burial-ground attached, existed here, belonging to the Sande* 
manians, a colony from Gayle (near Hawes), where there is 
still a meeting-house with several members. At Cowgill 
George Whitefield preached, and while he wcis thus engaged 
some persons of the baser sort ungenerously requited him by 
cutting off his horse's tail. In the disused chapel Mrs. Sedg- 
wick, wife of the Incumbent of Dent, was wont to hold a 
short service on Sunday afternoons; and it was chiefly 
through her exertions that the present Church was built, to the 
endowment of which the late Miss Elam has since liberally 
contributed. Of the troubles which arose in the assignment 
of a district, it will be convenient to speak later on. 

About a mile and a half further down we come to Gibs 
Hall, a picturesque old house by the road-side, which has 
been invested with unusual interest by Mary Howitt's " Hope 
on, Hope Ever!" — a story with touches of idyllic brightness 
and tenderness, and a life-like portraiture of country ways, 
which may be accounted for by her relationship to a Dent 
family of the name of Alderson, and by her intimate 
acquaintance with the locality, in consequence. She has 



Digitized by 



Google 



^54 



SEDBKRGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



done for this portion of Dent, under the guise of fiction, 
what William Howitt, her husband, did for the dale generally 
by his exact description of it, in his " Rural Life of England" 
(1838). It will be well remembered that when Andrew Law, 




Master (for the purpose of the story) of the Free School at 
Dent-town, had been separated by death from his dearly- 
loved wife, Dorothea, and had given up the profession of 



Digitized by 



Google 




pell SaaUroi). 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 255 

teaching to devote himself entirely to the child of their affec- 
tions, he transferred his home to " the house-end at Gibb's 
Ha'." With Gibs Hall, a short time previously, he had had 
strangely-mingled experiences of sorrow and joy; for there 
he had sympathised with the parents of Little Johnny 
Swithenbank, his favourite pupil, drowned while crossing the 
stream above Hell Caldron ; and there and then he had first 
seen Dorothea Zelter, the ministering angel who was destined 
to brighten his home for one brief year or so. And now, in 
his own great trouble, he took refuge at Gibs Hall, with 
Christie and Alice Swithenbank, whose bereavement, still an 
unhealed wound, could not fail to make them tender towards 
his own. But, apart altogether from the interest of the story. 
Hell Caldron, which lies opposite to Gibs Hall, is well worth 
a visit. After scooping out in the limestone deep holes, 
which popular fancy has dignified with such names as "the 
font" and "the pulpit," the stream swirls over a ledge into 
a gloomy abyss of great depth. The chasm is surrounded by 
high, rocky, tree-clad banks, and the name, if not euphonious, 
is felt. to be appropriate. When the river is swollen, the rush 
and eddying of the waters are tumultuous ; and in dry weather 
the waterfall, with its dark, rock-girt pool below, has many 
attractive features. At the best of times, however, the place 
is somewhat difficult of approach, and only vigorous limbs 
and steady nerves should venture on a close acquaintance. 

With the exception of the ten stone pillars on the height 
above Gibs Hall, which an unrestrained imagination might 
take for petrified aborigines rather than for piles of refuse 
firom a sandstone quarry, there is nothing to stay our course 
until we enter the paved zigzag street of the old town of 
Dent, still true to the description which Hartley Coleridge 
gave of it fifty years ago — 



Digitized by 



Google 



256 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

There is a town, of little note or praise ; 
Narrow and winding are its rattling streets, 
Where cart with cart in cumbrous conflict meets; 
Hard straining up or backing down the ways 
Where, insecure, the crawling infant plays ; 
And the nigh savour of the hissing sweets 
Of pan or humming oveu, rankly greets 
The hungry nose that threads the sinuous maze." 




a)(?nK 



The necessary outfit of an old English village — the slocks 
and market-cross — has long been removed; and the outside 
staircases and galleries, which established ready communica- 
tion between the occupants of the upper floors, are now 
invisible. Quaint signboards do not dangle across the streets, 
as in the palmy days of old ; and picturesque originality, in 
this respect, is concentrated on the irradiated features which 
promise to thirsty travellers the " Best Ale under the Sun." 
They are not, perhaps, the supremely handsome lineaments tra- 
ditionally associated with Apollo, but they have the homely, 
ruddy plumpness which befits a healthy country luminary. 
Old gentlemen in knee-breeches and cocked hats, with full- 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT, 257 

bottomed wigs and shoe-buckles to match, do not cross our 
path. Even the " terrible knitters/* immortalised by Southey, 
are fast vanishing away; and though curiously-adorned 
woollen gloves are still turned out for favoured customers by 
one or two ingenious dames, the faculty of fancy-knitting 
will, probably, in another generation have departed to join 
the lost arts. But, in spite of all changes, Dent-town, with its 
alternations of * house' and outhouse, and its irregular turns 
and twists up lateral lanes and alleys, could never be mistaken 
for the prim artificiality of a newfangled modem village. A 
ripple of animation spreads over the surface once a week, 
on Tuesday, the market-day; and the annual fair, on the 
Saturday after Whit-week, sees the street thronged with a 
lively muster of pleasure-seekers from miles around. 

The Independents and Wesleyans have Chapels, and there 
is a National School and a Reading-room ; but the two most 
interesting institutions are the Church and the Grammar 
School. Taking the latter first, it is to be observed that it 
dates from the first year of James I. (1603), who conferred 
upon it a charter, after it had been built and endowed by the 
liberality of thriving dalesmen. The staff was to consist of 
a master and an usher, and the general direction was reposed 
in a body of fifteen governors. The funds do not seem to have 
been administered, from the outset, with the best regard to 
future development, or it might have been a more flourishing 
foimdation than it is. The School is a plain unpretentious 
building, and, like most grammar-schools, it formerly consisted 
of an upper and a lower room. Many dalesmen have passed 
through it to honour and usefulness, though none has climbed 
the ladder of distinction so high as Adam Sedgwick — 
"Adam o' the Parson's" then — who received the rudiments of 
instruction within its walls. It was afterwards taught for a 

G2 



Digitized by 



Google 



258 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

time by his father, until the loss of sight obliged him to 
retire; and the future Professor himself had a narrow escape 
from becoming its Master. It is now ably conducted by 
Mr. George Swift. 

From the street to the churchyard is only a step, but the 
convenient proximity of the final resting-place does not seem 
to have attracted the natives to its cold embrace before their 
time. Indeed, the longevity of the people of Dent has been, 
and still is, remarkable. The frequently quoted instance of 
the father and son, who, in 1664, were subpoenaed from the 
dale to the assizes at York, the one in the 140th year of his 
age, and the other over 100, seems almost incredible in these 
degenerate days; but there is in the Register of Burials, 
under the year 18 17, a record of the interment of Elizabeth 
King, of Stone House, at the age of iii — the figures being 
repeated in words, to show that there was no mistake. At 
the very entrance to the Church we walk over the mortal 
remains of George Hodgson, who departed this life in 17 15, 
at the respectable age of ninety-four. Seven reigns and the 
Commonwealth — ^think what a chapter this would have been, 
if the recollections of George Hodgson could have been 
embodied in it! The salubrity of the climate and the dura- 
bility of the inhabitants, are still further evinced by the ages 
on the mural tablets inside; and there was present at the 
re-opening of the Church, in 1890, a fine hale dalesman, still 
living and lively, who is fast progressing towards his one 
hundred years. 

The Church has recently undergone a thorough restoration, 
at a cost of £2^700. It was presumably erected in the twelfth 
or thirteenth century, and probably shared the fortune of its 
mother, at Sedbergh, in being attached to the abbey at 
Coverham. After the dissolution of the monasteries, it is said 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 259 

to have fallen into a neglected and ruined condition, from 
which it was rescued by the energy of the dalesmen them- 
selves. Whether it is owing to this circumstance that the 
patronage of the living is uniquely exercised by twenty-four 
sidesmen, or whether the sidesmen themselves are an abnormal 
survival and development of a select vestry, is more than I 
can say ; but they have recently had an opportunity of show- 
ing how an appointment by so numerous a body is con- 
ducted, and their choice has eventually rested upon the 
Rev. J. A- Hayden. 

Among past Incumbents both the father and brother of 
Professor Sedgwick are numbered; and he was himself born 
at the old Parsonage, which remains practically unaltered 
since that day. Of the father, the Professor has inscribed on 
his tablet, that " he lived among his flock for fifty-four years, 
revered as their pastor, and loved as their brother;" and of 
the brother it is similarly recorded, that "his manners and 
temper were gentle and kind, and endeared him to all who 
were under his pastoral care." Another monument, north of 
the chancel door, is that of the Rev. Mark Rumney, whom 
we have already encountered as the registrar of the "gill- 
brack " catastrophe. The name " Rumney " alone remains 
to identify it with the memory of the staunch Jacobite and 
high-church clergyman of the old school, who is stated to 
have been impatient of Dissent, and to have let slip no 
opportunity of making emphatic use of the words heterodoxy 
and orthodoxy in some part of his sermon. His monument 
is fast following the example of the corresponding one on 
the other side of the door, which is now as uncommunica- 
tive as total obliteration can make it. Of the memorials 
outside the Church, I have not observed any that is specially 
noteworthy, unless it be one to the memory of Edward 



Digitized by 



Google 



26o 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



Fawcett, B.A., who died in 1687. He probably received his 
education at the Grammar School close by; and some Latin 
lines inform us that he practised the healing art in his 
younger years, and that he was a good friend and neigh- 
bour, and fond of his native place. Grenealogical inquirers 
have satisfied themselves that he belonged to a family fi"om 
a branch of which sprang the late distinguished Postmaster- 
Greneral, Professor Henry Fawcett. 




Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 261 

The nave and its aisles are in the later pointed 
Norman style. The high equilateral arches rest on round 
piers in the nave, and on octagonal ones in the choir. A 
piscina recently uncovered, near the chancel door, indicates 
the eastward limit of the pre-Reformation Church; and the 
debased character of the chancel, referred by experts to the 
middle of the sixteenth century, suggests the period at which 
the lengthening took place. Some of the piers and capitals 
have been mutilated, as if they had furnished rests for a 
rood-loft or other separation between nave and chancel. The 
fine large five-light east window, with its embattled transom, 
is a conspicuous feature. A recess in the south wall, opposite 
the entrance, marks the former existence of a door leading ta 
the Grammar School, where the corresponding doorway has 
also been built up. 

The remarks and recollections of Professor Sedgwick are 
too valuable to be omitted here. 

*' At the east end of the north aisle," he says, '* a few steps led to an old 
" Chapel of the Virgin Mary, which still, 1 am informed, retains the name 
" of the Lady-loft. It had been, of course, stripped of its altar at the time 
** of the Reformation ; and I need not tell my friends that it has long been 
"partly used as a Vestry. But within the time of my earliest memory 
''there was, in the Church, a Rood-screen and a Rood-loft; which was 
''taken down I believe full eighty years since; and there was some curious 
" tabernacle-work, which ran on the south side of the chancel and bounded 
"a south chancel-aisle. All these decorations were cut off and removed, 
"soon after the Rood-screen and its Loft. These changes may perhaps 
"have been of some benefit to the Chancel Pews (all built after the 
"Reformation); but they were a grievous injury to the architectural beauty 
"of the Church. 

" Other changes — begun a year or two before the time above-mentioned, 
" called improvements, and made at a great cost — ^were still more fatal ta 
"the beauty of the Church. A fine old tower, that might have stood for 
" centuries, was taken down ; and in its place rose the present short clumsy 



Digitized by 



Google 



262 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

** tower — worthless in design ; but, perhaps, claiming some kind regard by 
**the music of its six sweet bells. Then followed the destruction of the 
** Church-battlements and Clerestory, and the substitution of Kirk-bank 
"slate for the ancient roofing of lead — to the ruin of all exterior beauty 
•*and symmetry. And this bad taste was carried into the Church, by the 
''construction of the horizontal ceiling, which covers the middle aisle and 
" violates the whole internal design of the Church. All the above changes 
**were carried out in the course of five or six years— commencing, if I 
''mistake not, about the year 1785." 

The latter part of the preceding extract gives a vivid 
description of the condition of the Church as it appeared a 
few years ago. The battlements and clerestory, however, have 
now been replaced, and the ceiling and whitewash everywhere 
removed; the timbers of the roof have been most tastefully 
renewed ; marble, native and foreign, adorns the chancel floor ; 
and if the "six sweet bells," instead of being regelated by 
a mechanical contrivance, could be rung by hearty lovers of 
campanology, the maximum of outward completeness would 
seem to have been attained. The Church, whose trans- 
formation was beheld with admiration by an overflowing 
congregation, was re-opened on February 14th, 1890, by the 
Bishop of Richmond, who, in the course of an eloquent and 
appropriate sermon, pointed the moral of the life of the great 
geologist and noble-hearted dalesman whose words I have 
just been quoting. 

Previous to the restoration there was a unique collection 
of carved pews all over the Church, with dates chiefly from 
the later years of the seventeenth century. They bore witness 
to the former prosperity of the dale, when the statesmen 
seem to have vied with each other in the adornment of their 
sittings. The removal of these characteristic relics of a 
bygone era was a sore trial to many. They have the satis- 
faction, however, of knowing, that in deference to their senti- 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 



26j 



ments, siBveral specimens of the old pews have been preserved, 
and concentrated chiefly at the east end of the south aisle. 
The pulpit was a cumbrous three-decker, and stood about 
half-way down the Church. The upper storey — dated 1614 and 
initialled * M. T.' — was removed to its present position, and 
retained as sufficient for modem requirements. The rickety 
gallery at the west end has disappeared from view, and the 
lion and unicorn, painted in 1792, when George the Third 
was King, now ramp in obscurity above the chief door. 




cr==- — 

The old oak shelves, from which the Sunday loaves of 
Thomas Willan and Joseph Buttermire have been dispensed 
since 1657 ^^^ ^7^5 respectively, are still in use. The other 



Digitized by 



Google 



264 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

part of Thomas Willan's bequest, supplemented by later 
donors, forms a considerable fund for the distribution of 
calico and flannel to the poor on St. Thomas' Day. Dent is 
rich in charities, but I need only particularise the Hall-bank 
estate of eighty-three acres, with a large allotment left by 
Thomas Thistlethwaite, in 1637, ^-nd vested in six of the 
principal inhabitants as trustees, for the benefit of the poorer 
dalesmen. 

Before we leave the precincts of the Church, I may be 
permitted to give the result of my examination of an old 
book of parish accounts, commencing in 1751, and kindly 
submitted to my inspection by the churchwardens. 

The regular accounts are preceded by a list of articles 
purchased for the use of the workhouse since May ist, 1733. 
It enumerates, among other items, in the original spelling, 
a * racking,' an *as board,* a ^girdale,' a * backboard,' a 
*happin,' a ' brandereth,' a *quesson,* a 'pigen,' a * swill,' 
and a pair of *standiges' — words familiar to most natives 
at the present day, but for which strangers, who need an 
interpreter, may consult the List at the end. 

Plunging in among churchwardens, constables, and over- 
seers, 140 years ago, we see the machinery for parochial 
regulation in full swing. I select a few samples fi-om the 
accounts of each of the three classes of officials. 

The churchwardens had an annual outing to Kendal at 
the time of the Visitation. " Eight men to Kendal, 8^.," is 
the stereotyped mode of describing the jaunt. A mysterious 
personage styled " pariter" carries off a fee. Haply he is the 
Bishop's apparitor. The quantity of sacramental wine con- 
sumed in a year, on a few occasions, would be appalling, 
if we did not remember that all parishioners were boimd to 
communicate three times a year, and that they would naturally 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 265 

select the great festivals for this observance. The items on 
this account, in 1760, are: — three quarts on Whitsunday, seven 
at Michaelmas, six at Christmas, and four gallons at Easter. 
Quarts and gallons are mentioned till 1783, when we begin 
to hear of bottles. The dog-whipper was in receipt of a 
regular salary of 8^. Sd. until 1801, after which date he dis- 
appears from the accounts. For " stopping drops " a plumber 
was recompensed with sums varying, we may presume, 
according to the number of drops prevented; and when his 
vigilance had fairly excluded the intruders, he was paid for 
"seeking drops." Now and then a new pitch-pipe is wanted; 
occasionally the plate and linen have to be "scoured;" and 
sometimes the " serpcloth " (surplice) requires to be mended. 
In 1809 Thomas Metcalfe was paid £1 for "clarking," and 
3^. 6d. for " giving out salms." The supplemental payment 
was most likely a tribute to the musical talent displayed by 
the clerk in starting and leading the psalms from the 
metrical version of Tate and Brady. In 1754 there were 
expenses " when the church was * fest ' to be roughcast ;" 
but in 1787-8 the tower was rebuilt, and the churchwardens 
were allowed £1 apiece both years for excessive trouble. The 
remuneration of vermin-killers seems scarcely, at first sight, 
an ecclesiastical function; but when church-doors were the 
most eligible medium of publicity, the heads of foxes, and 
other obnoxious creatures, used to be nailed to them, that all 
might take note of what was being done in this direction 
for the general advantage. Even when this mode of enlighten- 
ing the community was given up, churchwardens, as the 
accredited representatives of the parish, continued to testify- 
to the due execution of these pests. In Dent the graduated 
scale of reward was 4^. a " head " for a fox, and 2s. for a cub ; 
Sd. for an old foumart, 4^. for a young one, and 2d. for a 

H2 



Digitized by 



Google 



266 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

raven. In 1824 great slaughter was committed among the 
foumarts, twenty-two seniors and five jimiors being duly 
presented and paid for. In i860 Thomas Fawcett received 
his 8d. for one specimen, after which the foumarts wotild 
seem either to have ceased to be troublesome, or to have 
happened on a more tolerant age. 

The Constables' Accounts show that Garsdale and Dent 
joined at expenses under this head, the " Garsdale propor- 
tion" being reckoned at one-fourth of the total. Garsdale 
stocks were repaired in 1755; and ten years later Dent spent 
7^. 2d. on its own account for new ones, and mended the market- 
cross in 1782. There are numerous items in connection with 
the "Militia List" and "Army Men;" and there is mention, 
in 1776, of a disappointing "journey to Skipton when Ale- 
License Sessions should have been, and there was no Justices.'' 
The conveyance of jurymen to York, Skipton, and elsewhere, 
was an expensive duty, but Dent paid such charges patriot- 
ically, and did not, like Sedbergh, plead distance and poverty. 

The overseers frequently assisted poor persons with rent 
and peats. At the "Letting of the Poor," and indeed on all 
conceivable occasions, much ale was consumed, and seems 
to have been paid for without demur. In 1758 there were 
eleven parish apprentices put out to inhabitants of Dent, 
and ;^io was paid with each. In 1774 Margaret Burton, 
midwife, had is. as " earnest of her bargain ;" and in the 
following year the same enterprising dame received a guinea 
"for la3dng poor women" — a use of the verb ^ lay which I 
commend to the notice of the editor of the New English 
Dictionary. 

The subject-matter of this chapter has now narrowed 
itself to a notice of the great personality on whose account 
Dent is best known to the world, and whose memory pervades 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 



267 



the dale. A tablet in the Church recounts the leading dis- 
tinctions in his life: — 

** In Memory of the Reverend Adam Sedgwick, LL.D., Canon of 
** Norwich, Senior Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, and for fifty-five 
** years Woodwardian Professor of Geology. Born March 22, 1785. Died 
"January 27, 1873. His University claimed his life's labour; but though 
*• removed for the greatest part of his life from his beloved birth-dale, his 
"love for it was always fresh, and he ever revisited it with increasing affec- 

** tion Baptized in this Church ; buried in the Chapel of Trinity 

" College, Cambridge/' 




Adam Sedgwick. 



Digitized by 



Google 



268 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

His eminence as one of the founders of the science of 
geology, it would be impertinent for me to dilate on. The 
colossal biography by Messrs. Clark & Hughes, long expected 
and lately given to the public, has set forth this and other 
aspects of his many-sided character in the fullest detail. 
His wit and wisdom, his love for children, his inspiriting 
enthusiasm, his spontaneous eloquence, his scientific achieve- 
ments, and his unfaltering faith, are there depicted on the 
broadest canvas. Several references to his connection with our 
dales have occurred in the previous pages, and all I would 
venture to do now is to touch upon one or two matters of 
local relevancy. 

At the age of sixteen Adam Sedgwick was sent to Sed- 
bergh School, and left it for College in 1803 — the year 
appended to his name cut on a stone in the south wall of 
the School. In 1808 he took his degree, and the year was 
remarkable for the number of men from the neighbourhood 
of Sedbergh who gained the highest mathematical honours. 
At the head of the list, as Senior Wrangler, was Bickersteth, 
of Kirkby Lonsdale, afterwards distinguished as a lawyer, and 
raised to the peerage as Lord Langdale. Next to him came 
Bland, Sedgwick's old friend and schoolfellow; and fifth in 
the series was Sedgwick himself. In 1847 Prince Albert was 
elected Chancellor of the University, and Sedgwick was 
appointed his secretary. An invitation to visit the Queen, 
at Osborne, speedily followed ; and this, and other interviews, 
established the Professor in the favour of Royalty, and had 
important consequences in the etymological crusade in which, 
as a trustee of Cowgill Chapel, he had afterwards occasion to 
engage. 

The circumstances were these. In 1837 Sedgwick laid the 
foundation-stone of Cowgill Chapel, in the upper part of the 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 269 

valley of Dent. It was a proud day in his life, and he spoke 
eloquently and impressively to the people assembled. Next 
year the Chapel was consecrated by the Bishop of Ripon, and 
his secretary carried away the trust-deeds and the map on 
which the district of the Chapel was defined, for the purpose 
of registration. This good intention, however, owing to some 
unaccountable omission, was not carried into effect; and in 
1864 Sedgwick and his co-trustees discovered, to their con- 
sternation, that both their own patronage and the right of 
the Chapel to a district, had been forfeited in consequence. 
They had to do the best they could under the circumstances. 
The patronage they cheerfully transferred to the Bishop ; and 
they obtained from the Ecclesiastical Commissioners the 
re-appointment of a district. The negotiations had been 
entrusted to the Rev. Joseph Sumner, the Curate of Cowgill. 
His cure being situate in Kirthwaite, one of the five hamlets 
composing the township of Dent, Mr. Sumner, smitten with 
the desire of turning what he conceived to be the true 
meaning of the name to good account, quietly allowed the 
Commissioners, in their award, to substitute for the "Chapelry 
of Cowgill," the title, "Chapelry of Kir>&thwaite." It was 
bad enough that Cogill had become Cowgill, in the course of 
unauthorised verbal transformation, and that Sedgwick's own 
name of Sidgwick (locally pronounced Sigzik) could be proved 
to have been changed by his great-uncle, at the suggestion 
of the Master of Sedbergh School, into the "Cyclopic" or 
one-"i"-ed form. Fresh tampering with local nomenclature 
was not likely to find favour in his eyes, especially when the 
result was to destroy pleasing associations with the ecclesi- 
astical history of Cowgill ; and when he read the award, and 
saw what had been done, he was very justly indignant. • The 
thing might seem but a storm in a teacup to the outside 



Digitized by 



Google 



270 SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 

world: it was not so to him. He had been the victim of 
mistaken etymology in his own person, and he was not going 
to sit down quietly with this fresh attempt to deform the old 
names. He set himself to compose a long and learned 
"Memorial by the Trustees of Cowgill Chapel" to the 
Ecclesiastical Commissioners, in which the changes introduced 
into the award by Mr. Sumner, without the knowledge of the 
trustees, were shown to be at once distasteful to themselves, 
and grounded in error. Such was the origin of the delightful 
** Memorial," which the author got printed for distribution 
among his friends and fellow-dalesmen. In his own discur- 
sive way, he embellished it with all kinds of interesting 
local reminiscences and disquisitions. The book is now diffi- 
cult to meet with, and one would hope that it may some 
day be reprinted in its entirety, for the gratification of the 
many admirers of the man and the dale. The Memorial 
failed to obtain any redress from the Commissioners — it was 
beyond their power to grant it — ^but what then? — the writer 
had delivered his soul. 

Kirthwaite or Kirkthwaite— cattle-clearing (Norse Kyr^ kine) 
or church-clearing — this is the question. Sedgwick espouses 
the side of the cattle, and shows that in the oldest local 
records, as in the uniform pronunciation of the inhabitants, 
the name is Kirthwaite. In his eagerness to expel the 
intrusive ky he somewhat overstated his case in the first 
instance, not being aware till afterwards that there were 
several examples in the old documents of the alternative 
spelling, Kirkthwaite. Still he maintained that the prepon- 
derance of evidence was in favour of Kirthwaite. The oldest 
documents exhibit this spelling, and there was no tradition of 
any ancient church in the hamlet. An etymologically-minded 
attorney would be apt to slip in the k^ and one such exemplar 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 271 

would serve as the archetype of many succeeding ones. This, 
I presume, would have been the answer of the Professor to 
fresh instances — not really old — of the Kir^thwaite ortho- 
graphy, such as those on pages 16 and 22 of the Bishop 
of Barrow's pamphlet on "The Ancient Parish of Kirkby 
Lonsdale," which do not go higher, at the earliest, than 1759- 
The question is too knotty for me, or perhaps for anyone, to 
settle decisively one way or the other. Personally, I lean to 
the Professor; but the only contribution I can make to the 
discussion — a contribution, however, which I think supports his 
contention — is the production of another Klirthwaite. In the 
reigfn of Edward I. there were rival claimants to the tithes of 
two parcels of land, called Lynthwaite and Kyrethwaite, in 
the forest of Inglewood and in the parish of Aspatria, which 
parcels had been recently assarted or cleared.* So far as I 
can learn, there is no tradition of the existence of a church 
at this Kyrethwaite, or Curthwaite, as it is now called; and 
from the fact that the groxmd had been only recently cleared, 
it seems probable that cattle, and not churchmen, had been 
its principal inhabitants previously. 

But the story had an excellent ending. Two years after 
the appearance of the green-backed "Memorial" — green was 
the favourite hue of a child's dress in Dent in the old- 
fashioned days — there came forth a still thinner volume, 
similarly clad, and designated a "Supplement to the Memo- 
rial." This, too, was full of recollections of men and manners 
as they were in the writer's youth ; but the cause of the 
resumption of the subject was to be found in the title of the 
first section — " Restoration of the true Name to the District 
Chapelry of Cowgill." A copy of the Memorial had found 



• Transactions of the Cumbd. and Westmd. Archaeological Society, vol. ii., p. 341- 



Digitized by 



Google 



272 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



its way to the Deanery at Westminster, and into the hands 
of Lady Augusta Stanley, who speedily apprised the Professor 
that the Queen, too, would like to see one. Her Majesty was 
impressed with the reasonableness of the complaint, and 



.^. 



/^'^ 




graciously intimated that the Archbishop of York should be 
communicated with, in order that a new Council might be 
held. But it was found that Parliament must first have its 
say in the matter. Accordingly, a Bill was introduced by 
the Archbishop in the House of Lords ; Mr. Gladstone sup- 



Digitized by 



Google 



DENT. 273 

ported it in the Commons, and eventually, in July, 1869, there 
passed, perhaps, the shortest Act of this reign, whereby the 
" District Chapelry of Kirkthwaite " was consigned to its 
original nonentity, and the "District Chapelry of Cowgill" 
was reinstated henceforth in its rightful place. 

Adam Sedgwick was at this time eighty-four years of 
age, encumbered with infirmities, but capable of dictating 
from his arm-chair what another might write; and it was 
a great surprise, as well as a great happiness, to him to find 
his wishes respected, and his legitimate desires gratified, by 
the highest in the land. The rest is soon told. At the 
venerable age of eighty-eight, in the full assurance of a 
Christian's faith, the great dalesman died at Trinity College, 
having "built himself an everlasting name," and left behind 
him "footprints on the sands of time;" 

*' Footprints that, perhaps, another, 
Sailing o'er life's solemn main, 
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother, 
Seeing, shall take heart again." 

The fame of the great geologist has eclipsed that of any 
other of our native worthies, though, as we have seen, he is 
far from being the only instance of extraordinary intellectual 
vigour and practical usefulness which the valleys of " Sedbergh, 
Garsdale, and Dent " have contributed to the sum total of the 
national enrichment. Through the instrumentality of home 
and school and tutor, the three dales may jointly claim to have 
borne a part in his development, and to be entitled to their 
proportion of interest in his renown; but it is undoubtedly 
right that with his beloved birthplace his name should be 
most intimately identified. A singular, but not inappropriate 
memorial marks this association at Dent. A plain block of 
Shap gfranite, through which flows the water-supply of 
12 



Digitized by 



Google 



274 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



the town, is inscribed "Adam Sedgwick." It matches the 
simplicity of the town better than any architectural embellish- 
ment would have done; and it recalls to the imagination 
those traits of character so admirably referred to by Professor 
Selwyn, when speaking of his departed friend, at Cambridge: — 

** He was a most primitive man — of the solid, ancient rock of humanity. 
*• He appears like a great boulder-stone of granite, such as he describes, 
" transported from Shap Fell over the hills of Yorkshire, dropped here in our 
** lowland country, and here fixed for life; primitive in his name, Adam ; 
** primitive in his nature; in his noble, rugged simplicity; a dalesman of 
"the north; primitive in his love of all ancient good things and ways; 
** primitive in his love of nature, and of his native rock from which he was 
** hewn ; primitive in his loyalty to truth, and hatred of everything false and 
'* mean; a heart, if ever there was one, that 'turned upon the poles of truth.* " 







Digitized by 



Google 



INDEX. 



Acreage, 194 

Agricola, 20, 23 

Aidan, 29 

Albini, Nigel de, 44 

Aiom, 23 

Antoninus, The Tenth Iter of, 21 

Apprentice's Indentures, 172 

Apsley, Sir Allen, 248 

Archer, Mabel, Will of, 96 

Ascham, Roger, 119, 120 

Aykfrith, 46 

Barbon, 22, 42, 43, 238 

Barwick, John, D.D., 59, 62-65, 127, 128 

Peter, M.D., 62, 127, 129 

Batty, Alderman, 208 

Baugh Fell, 105, 196, 199, 217-220 

Beckside Hall, 59 

Bell, John (or "Jockey"), 237, 240 

Berkeley, James Lord, 45 

Birkbeck, George, M.D., 238 

Birks Mill, 209, 210 

Black Force; 36, 216 

"Black Horee," The, 212 

Blaikling, John, 213 

Bland, Family of, 108 

John, martyr, 56, 57 

Miles, 108, 237, 268 

Bluecaster, 24, 47, 199 
Borrow Bridge, 22, 23 
Borwens^ 22, 25, 214 
Botany, 218 
Bowes, Lady, 228 
Brackens Gill, 249 
Braithwait, Richard, 231 
Bremeionaca^ 2i 



Brigantes, 19, 20 
Brigflatts, 68, 71 
Brimhaw, 208 
Bun Row, 175 
Burhf A Saxon, 30 
Burton-in-Lonsdale, 32, 44, 45, 78 
Buttermire, Joseph, 263 
Byland Abbey, 44 

Cambridge, Duke of, in Garsdale, 229 
Capplethwaite, 127, 128, 143, 213 
Casterton, 22, 30, 42, 43, 238 
Castlehaw, Castle How, or Castlehaw Tower, 

25, 30. 217 
Castley, 135, 143 
Cautley, 84, 88, 215 

Church, 200 

Crag, 196, 217 

Spout, 199, 218 

Celts, The, 19 

Charities— Sedbergh, 83, 84, 173, 174 

Dent, 263, 264 
Church Land, 230 
Church Light, 100, 122 
Civil War, The, and the Restoration, 58-66 
Clapham, 30, 43, 79 
Clobery, Colonel, 60 
Clough, The, 198, 220, 232 
Coaching-days, 166-168 
Cockersand Abbey, 51 
Cock-penny, 152-154 
Coke, Wm., Chaplain, Garsdale, 228 
Coleridge, Hartley, 145-147, 255 
Commons, Enclosure of, 194 
Conishead Priory, 51 
Cornmarket at Sedbergh, 187 



Digitized by 



Google 



276 



SEDBERGH, GARSDAXE, AND DENT. 



Coverham Abbey, 50, 51, 80, 113, 230 

Cowgill Church, 253, 268, 269 

Croft, Leonard, 105 

Cromwell, Oliver, 63 

Cumberland, Duke of, 75 

Cust, Ven. Edwards, Archdeacon, 79 

Dalesmen, their traits, mode of life, and 

dialect, 1 81-193 
Dandra Garth, 228 
Danes, The, 28, 34-37 
Dawson, Dr., 106, 111,233-239 

his Senior Wranglers, 237 

Dawson's Rock, 234 

Dee, The, 198, 199, 210, 248 

Deepdale, 250 

Deepmire, 100, 122 

Deira, 28, 29 

Dent, 65, 214, 246-248 

manor, 247, 248 

storms and floods, 251, 252 

marble and marble works, 252 

Cowgill Church, 253 

Gibs Hall and Hell Caldron, 253-255 

Dent-town, 256, 257 

Grammar School, 257 

longevity, 258 

Church, 78, 258-264 

restoration, 258, 262 

patronage, 259 

monuments, 259, 260 

architecture, 261 

Dewsbury, William, 73 

Domesday Book, 32, 35, 42, 43, 247 

Doukergill (or Dovecote Gill) Cave, 202 

Draw-well, 213 

"Drunken Bamaby*s Journal," 231, 232 

Ducking-stool, 171 

"Duke's Head," The, 75 

Edward VI., 114, 120-122 
Elam, John, J.P., 175 

Miss Lucy, 249, 253 

Elizabeth, Queen, 165 
EvrvUscirCy 41 



Ewecross, Wapentake of, 35, 78 
E)^e, Governor, 144 

Fairs and Market-days — 

Sedbergh, 177 ; Dent, 257 
Fawcett, John, 83, 85 
Field -names. Curious, 214 
Finkle Street, 36 
Firbank, 105 

Old Chapel, 70, 71 

Fell, View from, 197, 198 

Knott, 69 

Fitz-Alan, Ralph, 225 
Fitz-Hugh, Family of, 46, 247 . 
Fitz-Ranulph, Henry, 46, 225 
Folk-lore, 190 

Forster, Right Hon. W. E., 147 
Foster, Robert, 180, 200-202, 212 

Myles, 180 

Birket, Mr., 180, 202 

Fothergill, Anthony, M.D., 143 

John, M.D., 142, 143 

Fox, George, 66, 82, II2, 221 

at Sedbergh, 68 ; at Firbank, 69 ; 

at Brigflatts, 71 ; at Garsdale, 221 ; 

at Dent, 250 
Fox's Pulpit, 69 
Funeral Customs, 190, 191 

Gallow Hill, 213 
Gamett, Thomas, M.D., 238 
Garsdale, 65, 78, 214 

manor, 46, 226, 228-230 

Church, 225, 226, 229 

chantry, 225, 228 

flood, 232 

Garth waite, Isabell, 227 

Garway, Sir William, 229 

"Gastile,"23i 

Gate, 249 

Gateside (Frostrow), 83, 85 

Gawthrop, 36, 250 

Geology, 217 

Gibbet Hill, 213 

Gibs Hall, 253, 255 



Digitized by 



Google 



INDEX. 



277 



Gragreth, 218, 250 
Grisedale, 221 

Hall-garth, 27 
Harcla, Andrew de, 48 
Harrison, Reginald, 125 

Francis, 174 

Hastings, Lady Elizabeth, 162 
Haygarth, John, M.D., 235, 240, 241 
Hebblethwaite, Henry, 123 

Hall, 180, 200-202 

Heber, George, 65 

Hell Caldron, 255 

Helm Gill,-2I7 

Henry VHI., 51, 55, 79, 80, 114, 120 

Heronry, 210 

Hill, The (or Hill Top), 143, 204 

in Marthwaite, 212 

Holgate, Archbishop, 119 

Holme Fell, 196, 211, 218, 248, 250 

Marmaduke, 105 

Holmes, Richard, 174 

Howgill, 24, 108, 145, 213-215, 219 

Chapel and School, 214 

Fells, 196, 217 

Howitt, William, 70, 254 

Mary, 253 

Hymers, John, D.D., 144 

Ibbetson, Julius Caesar, 148 
Ingleborough, 32, 195, 196 
Ingleton, 42, 43, 45, 98 
Ingmire Hall, 61, 211 
Inman, James, D.D., 237, 241-245 

"Jack o' Dyers,'' 175 

Jackson, Mr. Roger (Sheriff of Chester), 208 

James I., 58, 228, 257 

Jervaulx Abbey, 51, 54 

Kendal, 36,41, 59, 75,77, 104, in, 127, 

128, 214 
Kershaw, Jonathan, 221 
Killington New Bridge, 212 
Kirkby Lonsdale, 21, 36, 41, 42, 48, 59, 60, 

75, 77, 78, 87. 99* 104, 198, 268 



Kirkby Stephen, 168, 169 
Kirthwaite, 269-271, 273 
Knoutberry Haw, 219 

Lambert, General, 61 

Langstone Fell, 220, 228, 241 

Lea Yeat, 250 

Lever, Thomas, quoted, 121 

Lincoln's Inn Bridge, 213 

Lockbank, 36 

Lofthouse, 113, 115, 120, 122, 123, 125, 

133, 139, 140, 186 
Lonsdale, Hundred of, 35 
Lord's Dub, 210 
Lune, The, 18, 23, 25, 35, 41, 105, 196, 

198, 212, 213 
Lupton, Roger, D.D., 53, 57, 113-115, 123 
Lupton and Hebblethwaite Scholarships, 

114, 123 

Mackereth, John and Anne, hi 

Hill, 200 

Magistrates, Scarcity of, 170 
Maiden Way, 21 
Manufactures, 180 
March Hill, 30, 160 
Market Cross, Sedbergh, 73, 74 

Dent, 266 

Marthwaite, 23, 30, 36 

New Bridge, 23, 212 

Matthews, Rev. William, 248 
Middleton, 22, 25, 30, 42, 59 
Middle Tongue, 186, 200 
Millthrop, 26, 36, 90 
Moister, Rev. William, 206 
Monasteries, Dissolution of, 52 
Monk, General, 60, 61, 64 
Monteagle, Lord Edward, 45 

Lord William, ib. 

Monuments — Comey, 106 

Dawson, 106, 240 

Fawcett, 260 

Mackereth, iii 

Otway, 61, 47, 95 

Palmer, iii 



Digitized by 



Google 



278 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



Monuments — Rose, 86 

Rumney, 259 

Sedgwick, 11 1, 259,267 

Washington, no 

Wharton, 107 
Morland Family, 213 
Morley, Lord, Edward Parker, 45 
Mountains, Heights of, 196 
Mowbray, Robert de, 44 

Roger de, 44, 48, 78, 225 • 

Thomas de, 44 

Isabel de, 45 

Nelson, Gilbert, and colleagues, 229 

Abraham, 65 

Normans, The, 38, 39 
Norse immigration, 36 

place-names, id, 

Northmen, The, 34 

Northumberland, Earldom of, abolished, 40 

Northumbrian 29 

Orton, 37 

Otway, Roger, 46, 59 

Sir John, 59, 6o» 61, 64, 128, 133, 134 

Charles, LL.D., 83, 84, 105 

Mary, 107 

Braithwaite, 47, 95 

George, 133, 139 

Abigail, 60 

Over Burrow, or Overborough, 21, 22, 32 

Pack-horses, 166 

Palmer, Thomas, 1 1 1 

Paradise, 226 

Pari;ih Accounts (Dent), 264-266 

Picts and Scots, 21, 27 

Pilgrimage of Grace, 53-55 

"Pitchering," 231 

Poor, Agreement for Letting the, 173, 266 

Population, 179 

Powell, Mr. F. S., M.P., 160 

Priest- House, 226, 230, 233 

Prosecution Association, 170 



Rackenthwaite, 226, 230 

Railways, Local — 

Ingleton and Tebay, 168 
Settle and Carlisle, 222, 250 

Ratable Value, 194 

Ravenstonedale, 19, 25, 29, 41, 143, 196 

Rawthey, The, 23, 25, 84, 105, 171, 
197-199, 209-212 

Rawthey Bridge, 19, 20, 165 

RaygiH. 233 

Rebellions of 17 15 and 1745, 75 

Redman (or Redmayne), Colonel, 60, 61 

Richmond, Archdeacon of, 78, 113, 116 

Riggs, The, 26, 166, 217 

Riot Act read, 175 

Ritter, James, to Lord Burleigh, quoted, 169 

Roads, 166 

Robinson, John, 214 

Romans, The, 20, 21 

Remains, 22-26 

Rood Guild, 100, 122 

Screen, 99 

Rumney, Rev. Mark (Dent), 252, 259 

Rysell, 196, 218, 222, 248 

St. Agatha's Abbey, 50, 225 

St. John's College, Cambridge, 114, I2I, 

123, 124, 136, 141, 157 
Sanctuary-men, 163-165 
Sarthwaite Bridge, 126 
Saxons, The, 27-31 
** .Scotch Jean's,*' 212 
Scroghouse, 83 
Scrope, Sir Geoffrey, 49, 50 
** Scrope's Lands," 50 
Sedbar, Adam, abbot, 54 
Sedbergh, 18, 42, 179, 194 

name, 32, 33 

manor, 44-46 

remoteness, 166 

town, 206, 207 

Market-house and Reading-room, 149 

Book Club, 169 

Widows' Hospital, ill 

reservoir, 204 



Digitized by 



Google 



INDEX. 



279 



Sedbergh cemetery, 112 

Union, 173 

Public Hall, 205 

Elementary Schools, 205 

Chapels, ib, 

reminiscences, 178, 179 

Church, 44, 47, 78, 90, 91, 96 

early patronage, 49, 50 

restoration, 89 



Sedbergh, distinguished pupils, 142-144 

reminiscences, 149-155 

New Scheme, 156-158 

New School and Buildings, and 

present condition, 160 
Exhibitions, 16 1, 162 



description, 90-92 

architecture, 93-95> 97» 98 

gallery, 98 

rood-screen, 99 

bells, 103 

registers, 103 

communion plate, 105 

windows, 106 

monuments, 106-111 

yew-trees, 112 

reminiscences, 98-102 

Vicars^ 79-8i ; among whom— 

Bateman, Wynne (also Master infrh) 

Burton, Leonard, 82 

Driffield, Joseph, 86 

Gawthrop, William, 87 

Hampton, Edward, 126 

Lobley, J. A., 90 

Mydlam, Richard, 8i, 113 

Peacock, D. M., 87 

Place, Marwood, 87 

Piatt, G., 87, 88, loi, no 

Quick, R. H., 86, 88, 89 

Riddell, Thomas, 87 

Rose, Jonathan, 83-86, 103, 105 

Wiginton, Giles, 81, 82 

Wybame, Joseph, 82 
- Grammar School, 112 

founded, 113 

tiissolved, 114 

refounded, 122 

scholarships, 114, 117, 123 

endowments, 122, 123 

Old School, 137, 138 

Old Master's House. 139- 141 



Governors, 114, 116, 123, 129, 

130, 136, 138, 139, 141, 156, 
157, I73» "75 
Masters, 124; among whom — 
Bateman, Wynne, 86, 108, 138 
Blomeyr, Henry, 100, 115-119 

his will, 117 

Broxholme, William, 138 
Coleridge, Hartley, I45-I47i 255 
Day, H. G., 155, 156 
Evans, J. H., 148, 149, i55 
Fell, Edward, 135, 136 
Garth waite, Richard, 130, 132, 133 
i Green, Isaac, 145, 147, lA^, 214 

Hart, H. G., 159, 160 
Hebblethwaile, Robert, 11 9- 12 1, 

125, 126 
Heppenstall, F., 106, 158 
Hull, Christopher, 139, 140 
Jackson, Richard, 129-135 
Mayer, John, 125, 126 
Nelson, Gilbert, 59, 126-128 
Saunders, Samuel, 86, 108, 137, 138 
Stevens, William, 141 
Wharton, Posthumus, 107, 136, 137, 
Wilkinson, Henry, 144 ['74 

Sedgwick, Rev. Richard, 235, 252, 258, 259 

Adam, 108, 141, 198, 200, 201, 204 

I 212, 238, 257, 261, 266-274 

' Rev. John, 259 

Geoi^e (Cappleth waite), 127, 128 

Rev. John (Howgill), ill 

Speight, Edward, 83, 84 

Stanley, Thomas, Earl of Derby, 45 

Sir Edward, ib, 

Stanton, Lawrence, 126 
" Statesmen," 184 
Staveley, Adam de, 46, 225 
Alicia de, 46 



Digitized by 



Google 



28o 



SEDBERGH, GARSDALE, AND DENT. 



Slaveley, Thomas de, 225 
Slocks— Sedbergh, 171 

Garsdale and Dent, 266 
Stone Circle, 19 
Stone Hall, 184-186 
Stone House, 252 
Strathclyde, Kingdom of, 28, 41 
" Street "— Middleton, 22 

Ravenstonedale, 25 
Strickland, Sir Thomas, 46, 50 
Swarth Gill, 240 

Thexton, Sir Richard, 46, 50 

Thistlelhwaite, Thomas, 264 

Thorns, or Thorns Hall, 107, 137, 140, 

203, 204 
Thursgill — Sedbergh, 36 ; Garsdale, 225 
Tithe Commissioners and Abbey Lands, 230 
Tithing, Custom of, 171, 172 
Tosti (or Tostig), Earl, 37, 38, 42 
Tradesmen's Tokens, 168 
Trotter, Richard, and colleagues, 248 

Udal, Rev. Charles (Garsdale), 234 
Uldale, 199 



"Wapentake," 35 
Wapentake Court at Sedbergh, 171 
Wakefield, Mr. W. H., 160 
Washington Family, 109, no 
Waterfalls— Black Force, 36, 216 , 

Brackens Gill, 249 

Cautley Spout, 199, 218 

Hell Caldron, 255 

Uldale, 199 
Watson, Mr. Dawson, 74, 171, 202 

Messrs. J. D. and T. J., 202 

Weavers* Yard, 180, 207 
Whitaker, Dr., quoted, 142 
Whitefield, George, 253 
Whitehead, George, 73 

Sir James, 208 

Whitwell, John, universal genius, 176, 177 
Widows' Hospital, 174 
Willan, Richard, 212 

Robert, M.D., 143, 144 

Thomas, 263, 264 

Wilson, Rev. J. M., 144 
Winder, 166, 196, 217, 218 
Wordsworth at Sedbergh, 195 

Yorkshire, former extent of, 41, 77 



Digitized by 



Google 



LIST OF LOCAL WORDS REFERRED TO BUT NOT 
EXPLAINED IN THE TEXT. 



Addle ^ to eara ; i88 

As boards oxashboard^ a two-liandled wooden 

box, open at the top and front, for 

removing ashes ; 264 

BackboardyZ. large board for kneading dough 

on; 264 
Back-end y auiumn ; 192 
Bam^ a child ; 193 
BetUrmorCy of higher rank ; 184 
Boose y a stall for cattle ; 193 
Brattderethy or brandreth^ a tripod to hold 

a kettle or pan over a hearth-fire ; 264 
jyr^, a cow-house ; 193 

Clipping J a sheep-shearing ; 189 

Draught-ewe (pron. drowt)^ an older sheep 
removed or drafted off from the fell 
to be fed in the lowlands ; 192 

Festy let ; 265 

Fogy the aftermath ; 192 

Gavelocky a crow-bar ; 193 
Gimmery a female lamb ; 192 
Girdaley or girdle^ a bow-handled circular 
iron plate for baking oatcake, &c. ; 264 
Grappling^ catching trout with the hand ; 1 5 1 
Greet i to cry; 193 

Happiuy a quilt ; 264 
Haverbready oatcake ; 183 
Heafy a portion of the common frequented 
by one flock ; 186 



//<?«, a sheep older than a lamb, and until 

shorn ; 192 
House, a dwelling-house par excellence ; 257 

Kist, a chest ; 184 

Late, to seek ; 193 
Lingy heather; 187 

Newcaltf newly calved ; 192 
Niefy or neif, the fist ; 193 

Pigen, or piggin, a small wooden bucket 
with one stave longer than the rest 
for a handle; 264 

Quesson, or whisshiny a cushion ; 264 

Racking, or reckan, an adjustable crook or 
hook above the fire ; 183, 264 

Screes, comminuted fragments of rock on 

the side of a hill ; 218 [igy 

Sievesyox seaves, rushes (Juncus communis); 
Sike, a small stream less than a beck, A 

beck between high banks is called a 

^'V/. 193. 
Standigesj or standishes, inkstands ; 264 
Stee, a ladder ; 193 
Steg, a gander ; 193 
Stoning, a kind of white rubbing-stone for 

ornamenting flagged floors; 183 
Swill, an open basket ; 264 

Tup—(\) a, male lamb ; (2) when full- 
grown, a ram. 192 
Twine, to cry peevishly ; 193 
Twinter, a sheep two winters old ; 192 



Digitized by 



Google 



Richard Jacksox, Printer, i6 ^S: 17, Commf.rciai. Street, Leeds. 



Digitized by 



Google 



Digitized by 



Google 



y<^/ 



Digitized by 



Google 



/A/ ' 



i 



Digitized by 



Google