Puslapio vaizdai

St. Cuthbert the bishop; and Cecilia, in her widowhood, gave for the fouls of her husband, and Ranulph and Matthew, her fons, her whole lordship of Childewick, with the mill and foke thereof, as alfo of Siglefden and Harwood, with the fuit thereof. Alice de Romeli, their daughter, wife of William Fitz-Duncan (1 Henry II., 1151), translated these canons from Emesey to Bolton, which she gave the monks in exchange for other lands of theirs; fhe being heiress to their founders, confirmed to them all their grants, and further granted free chace in her chace in Craven. King Edward II. (reg. 5,) having all their lands given by their several benefactors recited before him, confirmed them to them. This priory was a cell in fome respect to that of Huntington, till it was discharged of that fubjection by Pope Celestine III. The prior and convent granted to John de la Infula, or Lifle, Lord of Rougmont, a liberty to found a chantry of fix chaplains in the church of Harwood, for the maintenance of which he gave one acre of land, and the advowson of the said church, for the good of his soul, and those of his ancestors. In the reign of king Richard II. (anno. 20), that king granted a license to Richard de Scrope, knight, to found a chantry of fix chaplains, of whom one to be the Cuftos, in his castle of Bolton, and to endow the fame with a yearly rent of £43. 6s. 8d. Other benefactors of this houfe were William Vavafor, who gave to these monks a carucate and a half of land, with the appurtenances of Fedon; Simon Braam, who gave them a bovate of land in Over-Yeden; and Alice Wentworth, one bovate of land in Wentworth. This priory was surrendered to King Henry VIII.'s visitors, in 1539, by Richard Moon, then prior, when it was found worth £212. 3s. 4d. per annum.

Here the reader has the whole skeleton hiftory of the priory of Bolton, near Skipton-in-Craven, in the style which down to near our own time prevailed amongst topographers; and which

often prevails amongst them now. This was the genuine Dryasdust system, by which you got the bare bones of the chief facts, and nothing but the bare bones; no flesh, no muscle, no skin, no beautifying colour and life. Topographers till the time of fuch men as Surtees of Durham, Whitaker the hiftorian of Craven, Baker of Northampton, etc., feemed to imagine that nothing was worthy of record but the driest facts and genealogies. All thofe environments of scenery which are the life-blood of every place, were left out, and instead of a living presence we were presented with a corpfe. Who would imagine that in Bolton we had one of the most charming spots, mingling the lovelieft art with the lovelieft nature that England or any other country can fhow? Whitaker, with a different sense of the unities which conftitute the actuality of a place, fays that for picturesque effect the fite of this Bolton Priory has no equal amongst northern houses, and perhaps none in England.

But let us look a little at the ruins of the priory before taking in the whole picture. The ruins, furrounded and mingled with magnificent trees, present a moft exquifite combination of towers, lofty broken arches and gables, with projections and windows of most varied character, draped with ivy, and standing on its low green sward in a noble monaftic folemnity. The dif ferent portions of the building display every fucceffive style from the Norman down to the decorated, the final order of AngloGothic. It is evident at a glance that it has been the work of fucceffive hands, and fucceffive ages. To comprehend the whole the visitor must examine the details for himself. We are told that Alice de Romeli,-in 1151, thirty-one years after the period of the foundation,-who had married William FitzDuncan, nephew to David king of Scotland, gave this rich and fheltered spot to the monks in exchange for the more bleak and exposed estates of Skipton and Embsey: and that it was on a

most forrowful occafion, of which we shall more particularly speak. The fortunate poffeffors did not cease to enlarge improve and enrich their house till Henry VIII. broke in upon them, still building, and wrefted the property from Richard Moon, the prior, before he had completed his western tower.


The vifitor will be agreeably furprised to see the nave converted into a parish church, where divine service is still performed. In different parts of the nave still stand five lofty cylindric columns, and equally fine tall lancet windows, with fragments of stained glass, and beautiful tracery. At the east end of the aisle of the nave is the old Chantry Chapel, under

which is the burial vault of the Claphams and Maulevers of Beamfley. This is covered by eight large rough stones, above seven feet long, laid fide by fide, and rifing nearly two feet above the floor. These old squires and knights are said to have been buried upright; and, if we were to believe Wordsworth, you might still see them through the chinks of the floor standing grimly in that pofition. But this is at present a mere poetical myth, founded, no doubt, on tradition.—

Pafs, pass who will yon chantry door,

And through the chink in the fractured floor
Look down and see a grifly fight,-

A vault where the bodies are buried upright!
There, face by face, and hand by hand,
The Claphams and Maulevers stand;
And in his place, among son and fire,

Is John de Clapham, that fierce efquire,

A valiant man, and a man of dread

In the ruthless wars of the White and Red;

Who dragged Earl Pembroke from Banbury church,
And smote off his head on the stones of the porch.

The Tudor screen separating the nave from the transept remains, and also the roof of the nave, painted with broad lines of vermilion, and the beams refting on figures of angels, one of which stands on a crescent moon,- an evident allufion to Prior Moon. The choir, in the decorated style, retains its fine lofty windows, and specimens of tracery of uncommon beauty. On the floor are vifible flabs covering the graves of different noble benefactors and priors. Fragments of four of the fedilia remain, and of a pifcina of the early-English ftyle, but greatly mutilated. On the fouth fide of the choir are two chapels, which are the refting-places of the lords of Skipton. In one of them in 1670 was visible the effigy of the lady Romeli or Romille, the great patronefs of the house. It is fo no longer. In the old quadrangle stands a building appropriated as a school :

and the foundations of the chapter-house and of the prior's lodge are yet traceable. The guide-book to the abbey will enable visitors to notice every particular feature of this fine old pile. In the fields near still exifts the priory barn.

"The ruins of this celebrated priory," says a modern writer, “stand upon a beautiful curvature of the Wharf, fufficiently elevated to protect it from inundation, and low enough for every purpose of picturefque effect. Its fite is fo fhut in by hills and embosoming trees, that the stranger is not aware of it till he is almost on the spot." After paffing an ancient, but snug and comfortable hostelry,—an agreeable object to those who contemplate a fojourn of fome days here,—you cross a high, bald bridge, very different to the one erected in 1314 by Eve de Laund. On a beam in a cottage adjoining the bridge may be seen this inscription :--

Thow yat paffys by yes way,
One ave Maria here now fay.

On your left hand is a large pasture called the Town-field, bounded by the river, in which field, "amid corn almoft ready for the fickle, Prince Rupert, it is faid, on his way to Marston Moor, encamped in the last week of July, 1644.” 'The elm under which he dined was remembered in the beginning of the present century. Again in 1745, the rebels pastured their horses there, though it was again laden with corn. There is a pleasant footpath from the bridge, across this fertile plain, to the abbey; but strangers generally proceed a few hundred yards further down the road, and enter the abbey-close by an opening in the boundary wall, which there remains in good preservation. There, some years ago, we entered. We came to a few cottages-to a high ftone wall-to a small arched gateway; and paffing through, what a little paradise burst upon us! There were the ruins of the priory amongst magnificent

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