Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

twenty years. The first Iron Rail-way, for general use, in this country, was opened from Wandsworth to Croydon, and afterwards extended to Merstham, about 1805; and it is stated that the first artificial navigation in England was formed by erecting locks on the Wey, about the middle of the seventeenth century. Several other canals have been since completed, and add much to the facility of communication, and consequently to the advantage of trade. Surrey is not distinguished by any particular manufacture; but its vicinity to the capital, and the convenience of its streams for the erection of mills, have led to the establishment of several important works, which will be noticed in the following pages.

This county forms part of the diocese of Winchester, to which it has been attached ever since the year 705. It is an archdeaconry, and contains 140 parishes, nine of which are peculiars of the Archbishop of Canterbury. Until the year 1615 but one High Sheriff was appointed for this county and

that of Sussex; but since that period a distinct officer has been regularly nominated for each. It is comprised in the Home Circuit; the Lent Assizes are held at Kingston, and the Summer Assizes alternately at Guildford and Croydon. Its proportion of the national Militia is 800 private men. The present Lord Lieutenant is Lord Middleton.

HISTORY OF THE COUNTY:

The early annals of Surrey do not afford many events worthy of record. Its first inhabitants are supposed to have been originally a people of Belgium, called the Segontiaci, who having settled in Hampshire, were driven from thence by a new swarm from the “ northern hive," and established themselves in the present counties of Surrey and Sussex, where they dwelt in the time of Ptolemy, by whom they are denominated the Regni.

After the conquest of this island by the Romans, Surrey formed a part of the province called Britannia Prima, which comprised all that part of the country southward of the Thames and Severn. There is no positive evidence that any permanent

station of that people was here established; but there is strong reason to believe that one existed at Kingston, and another at Woodcote, near Croydon, which is supposed to have been the Noviomagus of Ptolemy. St. George's Fields, Southwark, from its vicinity to the capital, was the centre of many of the Roman roads, and numerous coins, &c. have been at various times found there. Remains of encampments are still visible on Holmbury Hill near Ockley, on Bottle Hill near Warlingham, and on St. George's Hill, near Walton-on-Thames, which latter seems to have been occupied by Julius Cæsar previous to his passage across the river at Coway Stakes; beside several other relics of the same people, which will be noticed in their proper places.

Subsequently to the departure of the Romans, the country of the Regni shared the fate of the other parts of the island, and became subject to the Saxons. After a brave struggle with these invaders, this county and that of Sussex were subdued by Ella, who about the year 491 formed them into the kingdom of Suth-Seax, or the South Saxons, which existed as a separate state until 685, when it was subdued by Ceadwalla, King of Wessex. On the subsequent division of England into shires, this district received the name of Suthrea, from its situation on the southern side of the Thames, which, by a slight alteration, was softened into its present appellation.

During the Danish invasions, Surrey sustained its full share of the ravages committed by those barbarians, until the establishment of Canute on the throne restored it, in common with the other parts of the country, to a state of tranquillity. The Norman Conquest followed; and William rewarded his adherents with sixty-two manors in this county, wrested from the unfortunate Saxons. From this period the history of Surrey becomes a part of that of the country at large; the only event peculiarly. connected with it, is the decided part taken here with the Parliament in the great contest with Charles I. Early in the struggle a petition from Surrey, very numerously signed, was presented to both Houses, applauding the measures which had been pursued, and praying for the adoption of others,

still more hostile to his Majesty's pretensions; among these were the removal of his evil counsellors, the expulsion of popish lords from Parliament, the depriving bishops of their votes, &c.; most of which were very shortly after carried into effect. During the war which followed, some skirmishes took place in this county, which will be more particularly adverted to in mentioning the places where they occurred.

www

ADDINGTON, a village three miles from Croydon, with a small Church, stands at the foot of a range of hills, covered with birch, to which it gives the name of Addington Common. On the brow of one of these hills are several small tumuli, in which have been found Roman urns, coins, &c. In this parish is a handsome mansion, called Addington Place, erected about 1775 by Alderman Trecothick, but purchased in 1807 by the Archbishop of Canterbury, as a summer residence for the prelates of that see, instead of the old palace at Croydon, which had fallen to decay.

ALBURY, a village with an ancient Church, about six miles from Guildford, is remarkable for some remains considered by antiquarians to be those of a Roman temple. Coins, urns, and fragments of tiles have been dug up here at various periods.

Bagsuot is pleasantly situated, 29 miles from London, on the border of the Heath of the same name, which is of great extent, reaching from near Egham into Berkshire and Hampshire. On this Heath an immense number of sheep and cows are fed; and the village being a great thoroughfare, and having many noblemen's and gentlemen's residences in its vicinity, has a lively and prosperous appearance. The population of the parish of Windlesham, in which Bagshot is situated, in 1821, was 1590.

BANSTED is a village 15 miles from London, delightfully situated on a rising ground, which commands extensive and charming

views over the Downs to which it gives vame. The Church is an ancient structure, with a square tower, and a lofty spire,

which being cased with white tiles, is a conspicuous object for many miles round, and from whatever point it may be viewed has the appearance of standing awry. The inhabitants of this parish are about

900.

BARNES, a village three miles from Richmond, has a very ancient Church, about a quarter of a mile from which is BARN Elms, once the residence of Jacob Tonson, the well-known bookseller, in which he used to entertain the members of the “ Kit-Cat Club,” comprising the most eminent wits and geniuses of that period, which has been styled the Au. gustan age of English literature. The manor of Barnes was granted to the Canons of St. Paul's Cathedral by King Athelstan in the tenth century, and has remained in their possession ever since. Population of the parish, in 1821, 1240 persons.

BATTERSEA is situated on the Thames, directly opposite to Chelsea, with which it communicates by a wooden bridge, of no very elegant construction. The Church is a plain brick building; containing several monuments, among which are those of Lord Bolingbroke; Thomas Astle, the author of a valuable treatise on Writing; Arthur Collins, whose “ Peerage” is much esteemed; and William Curtis, an eminent botanist *. In this village is also an excellent Charity School, a Dissenting Chapel, a Poor-house, and other charitable institutions. Several chemical and other works are established here, and a curious flour mill, called the Horizontal Mill, of very large dimensions, and singular construction, is a prominent object from the river and the opposite shore. The population of this parish, in 1821, was 4992, which must have greatly increased since that period, as an immense number of houses have been built on the tract called Battersea Common, where a new Church has also been erected.

* Here is also a monument to the memory of Sir Edward Winter, who died in 1685, and who is represented, by a sculpture, in the act of performing two extraordinary exploits. Being attacked in the woods by a tiger, he placed himself on the side of a pond, and, when the tiger flew at him, he caught him in his arms, fell back with him into the water, got upon him, and kept him down till he had drowned him! This adventure, as well as another wonderful exploit, is vouched for by the following lines:

66 Alone, unarm’d, a tiger he oppress’d,
And crush'd to death the monster of a beast;
Thrice twenty mounted Moors he overthrew,
Singly on foot, some wounded, some he slew;

Dispersed the rest; what more conld Samson do ?"
What, indeed!-or Baron Munchausen either?

At Battersea, in 1678, was born the celebrated Henry St. John, Lord Bolingbroke; a man of great genius, and unbounded ambition; whose character will be more justly estimated from an attentive consideration of his conduct, as developed in the history of his country, than from the panegyrics of Pope. After several years exile he obtained leave to return to England, and died in his paternal mansion, in 1751. The house in which he lived, and which was extensive and magnificent, has been nearly demolished; but one room, lined with cedar, and beautifully inlaid, still remains, and is said to have been the favourite retreat of his Lordship and his attendant bard, Pope, whose admiration of him knew no bounds, and which he returned by employing Mallet after Pope's death to traduce his memory!

BEDDINGTON is a village two miles from Croydon, with a handsome Church, apparently erected about the latter end of the fourteenth century. This is a large parish, but very thinly inhabited, its popula. tion, in 1821, being only 480 persons; and in this number is included the inhabitants of the adjacent hamlet of WALLINGTON, a small place, supposed once to have been of importance, and probably a Roman station, as many urns, fragments of warlike weapons, and human bones, have been discovered in the neighbourhood.

Beddington Park was long the residence of the ancient family of Carew; of whom Sir Francis rebuilt the mansion about 1570, and planted the gardens with choice fruit trees, which he spared no expense in procuring from abroad; and he is said to have reared the first orange trees ever seen in England, from seeds brought over by Sir Walter Raleigh, who had married his niece*.

* Lysons says, “ The trees were planted in the open ground, and were preserved in the winter by a moveable shed. They Aourished for about a century and a half, being destroyed by the hard frost in 1739-40, In Au

« НазадПродовжити »