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Mr. Seager's quotations are from works which were standard authorities in Shakespeare's time, and a goodly list of them is given; they are all worthy of being reprinted in extenso, and would delight a Society formed for that purpose; although perhaps the Ibis, and the magazines devoted to critical modern description of the animal and vegetable world, would be scandalised at the very thought. Much of the lore that was current at the period covered by this work is still current in the remoter districts of Britain, and finds a place among the unwritten traditions which are handed down by the rustic and the half-educated inhabitants of our country ; much of it is illustrated by objects of antiquity, such as carvings, illuminated MSS., and forms of ancient objects which are often laid upon our table at many meetings. It is pleasant to read through the pages of this remarkable collection of popular lore, much of which, of course, is incorrect and misleading; but much, at the same time, illustrates the ancient method of investigation which has its modern outcome in so many philosophical societies. It is a fascinating branch of archæology, and Mr. Seager has enabled us to revel in it.
The House of Cromwell : a Genealogical History of the Descendants of the Protector, including some account of the Cromwells of America. By JAMES WAYLEN. New Edition by Rev.J.G. CROMWELL, M.A., Hon. Canon of Durham (London : Stock). Not long ago we had occasion to notice the Numismata Cromwelliana, written by a promising member of this Association, Mr. Henfrey, whose untinely death robbed the members of an ardent student who would have occupied a high place among the roll of British antiquaries. The book before us now deals with the families descended from Oliver Cromwell, thus carrying on a work begun by Noble in 1787. Information and anecdotes have been gathered together by diligence of research, and much that is new to many readers will be found in the pages of this treatise. Seventy or eighty modern families of repute appear to be connected in one way or another with that of Cromwell, and for this account. it is worthy of consultation even by those who have no special admiration for the life and character of the usurper; and the chapters dealing with the relics and portraits should be studied by all who take an interest in collecting souvenirs, such as letters, coins, and medals, illustrating the career of one whom Gray has immortalised to infamy in a line of delicate irony. The members of the Cromwell stock are, we are told, still numerous in North America, and Americans who are justly pleased when they can find a genealogical link to bring them in contact with the great families of Britain, cannot fail to add this book to their collections with much advantage.
British Archaeological Association.
KENT IN THE LAMBETH ARCHIVES.
BY S. W. KERSHAW, M.A., F.S.A.
(Read at the London Congress, 1896).
HE title of your Congress, “ London and
Home Counties”, permits me to compile what may be called a digressive paper, which otherwise should treat strictly of London archæology.
In the visit to Lambeth Palace (for
which I much regret my absence), I could hardly have directed your attention to other than general descriptions; so that I trust this brief sketch of a particular subject may not be unworthy of your patience, or of the honour awarded me by its inclusion in your programme.
There are several considerations which might determine that Kent should take a part in this Conference. Canterbury, its metropolis, was the ancient capital almost before the fame of London went forth. “ From that first English city', says Dean Stanley, “ from Kent, the first English Christian kingdom, has by degrees arisen the whole constitution of Church and State in England, which now binds together the whole British Empire.”
To the two ecclesiastical centres, Canterbury and Rochester, mediæval learning had directed its agencies, and so we find these cities rich in monastic and civic lore gathered from many a remote age. St. Augustine's Monastery at Canterbury, as well as Christ Church, were for ages the repositories of learning, and the monkish chroniclers and writers who were associated with these foundations, will always hold their place in history.
The labours of Gervase, Eadmer, Thomas of Elmham (Treasurer of St. Augustine's), have enriched the muniments which are preserved at Canterbury, as well as other Kentish MSS. in our National and University libraries. It is not wonderful then that Lambeth, the early home of the archiepiscopate, should have gathered together valuable archives, which, with those of Canterbury and Rochester, throw great light on church and secular history in past time. The Lambeth series consist of records (properly so called) and MSS. of a varied character, in all about two thousand volumes.
The first rank must be given to the Registers of the See, dating from the time of Archbishop Peckham, 1279, and in regular succession almost to this day. Some sixty volumes, generally embellished with the arms of each prelate, and written in a good hand, became, as it were, the great “ Day Book” of each archbishop. For, in the Middle ages, the account of all that occurred during the Primacy was carried about from place to place, where the archbishops stayed at one or other of their manors or houses in the diocese. Thus we find documents dated from Maidstone, Otford, Lyminge, Charing, Croydon, Mayfield, and other towns.
These registers, besides containing reports of episcopal consecrations, ordinations, institutions, and other official acts, include a vast series of mediaval wills, which are of the highest use to the local antiquary. These wills commence in 1279 and continue till about 1644, and are replete with particulars as to family property, bequests to churches, and other matters. An index to the wills and administrations has been printed in the Genealogist, 1883, and many noted persons in ecclesiastical, local, or historical rank find a place in this index. From the multitude of names I may select a few of the most typical, viz. :
Sir Nicholas Carew, of Beddington, 1387.
John Gower, the poet, buried in St. Mary Overie (St. Saviour's, Southwark), 1408.
Roger Walden, Bishop of London, 1405.
Also several city rectors and church dignitaries of all parts of England. As the “ indexes” of so many county wills have been published, the Lambeth collection will always form a valuable aid to local historians.
Another class of documents in which Kentish lore is prominent is the Charta Antiquae, in thirteen volumes, varying in date from the fourteenth to the eighteenth century, of a miscellaneous nature, but occasionally of great importance. Some of these manuscripts are well written, having seals or large initial lettters. Their contents are very varied, but many relate to lands and manors in Kent, claims of property and other possessions of the See of Canterbury.
Exchanges of land between the archbishops and the Crown form a considerable item, and here I would especially note the deed of exchange of the manor of Lambeth with that of Darenth in Kent, by the Bishop of Rochester in 1197. It is curious that only the counterpart exists here, the other halt being with the Chapter of Rochester. The two documents were exhibited together at the Society of Antiquaries, when a paper read by Mr. St. John Hope, F.S.A., on their respective merits, was printed in the Proceedings of that Society (1892). In these Charta, references also occur to the archbishop's manors of Wimbledon, Bekesbourne, Chislet, Knole, Maidstone, Saltwood, etc. There are also matters relating to visitations, the legal courts of the archbishops, subsidies of the clergy, taxations, etc.
Local topography is illustrated in many ways: we find an order for the repair of the sea walls in Romney Marsh, also for the care of woods in Kent belonging to the archbishops, for which a regular custodian was appointed.
A propos of this London Congress, I must mention
that vol. vii of the Chartre describes the state and value of several London parishes in 1635, according to an inquiry instituted by Bishop Juxon and others, to which the answers are given.
No less than one hundred and fifteen city parishes are included, many of their churches long ago perished in the Great Fire, so that this account is of unusual importance. Volume iii also refers to London livings, tithes and clergy, but is of an earlier date.
There are also scattered references to London in other volumes of these Charta, but the two mentioned are specially devoted to civic annals.
As a supplement to the Chartæ Antiquæ, I may mention three volumes of Commonwealth Surveys relating to the See of Canterbury and its Peculiars.
The position of Kent between the metropolis and the continent rendered it liable to rigid inspection on the part of the government, and during the Civil war this would been have increased. The late Canon Jenkins, whose scholarly history of the diocese is well known, remarks that “the vast extent of the estates of the Church in Kent, and the fact that all those churches were surrendered to the Crown, and passed into the hands of the greater nobility, was one of the causes, with others, which marked a great movement in the county”.
Surveys of the livings and manors at such times are of untold worth to the historian of this period, and in these volumes he would find the extent, acreage, value, etc., with the incumbents' names clearly set forth. Of the greater manors surveyed ” in Kent are Chislet and Canterbury, besides several “ granges", especially those in the "Isle of Thanet”, once belonging to St. Augustine's.
Among monastic records there are many of varied interest; some, copies and a little fragmentary-chiefly relating to religious houses at Canterbury, Dover, Faversham and Maidstone. One MS. (No. 241) calls prominently for notice, being a register of Dover Priory for the year 1372, a folio of two hundred and sixty-four pages in a well-written hand.
The priory church of St. Martin must have been one of