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Wodcrofte. Ad hanc [curiam] precipitur Johanni Styff
superiori wodeward quod distringas tenentem terrarum et tenementorum nuper Thome Browne in Badmynton
de respondendo domino de homagio (etc.] HAWKESBURY. View of Frankpledge, Hockday, 31
Henry VI., 1453. Kylcote.. Et preceptum est per senescallum Willelmo
Tonkere, Rogers Longedene, Henrico Cooke, Thome Woodroue et Johanni Styffe cum tota villata de Tresham quod ponant lapides merales apud Pykyn Clyfe et Cleryn Stubbe in festo Sancti Martini proximo futuro post datum hujus curie inter terram Nicholai Alderley et terram diu jam in tenura Johannis penne super visum homagii preante habitum et factum. Et hoc sub pena
cujuslibet eorum in defectu forisfacture domino iiij. HAWKESBURY. View of Frankpledge, (32 ?] Henry VI.
1454. Kylcote. Ad istam [curiam] venit Nicholaus Styffe et dat
domino de fine vje viijd pro ingressu habendo de ...... ........ cum pertinentiis ipsius in tenura [ Johannis] Styff ............ inde et faciendo in omnibus sicut Johannes Styff reddere et facere consuevit .... solvendo
vere finem predicto domino premanibus ..... HAWKESBURY. View of Frankpledge, St. Martin, ni
Edward IV., 1471. Upton. Item presentat quod adhuc tenementum nuper in
tenura Stephani Fouler et modo in tenura Johannis Westcote et Thome Styffe jacet ruinosum; Ideo in misericordia; Et continuatur pena, viz.: vjø viijd Et preceptum est eis quod bene et sufficienter emendant citra
festum Pentecoste et hoc sub pena predicta. Stoke. Decennarius ibidem cum sua decena venit etc. ....
Item presentat j pullum mas precii xvid provenientem in extrahuria citra festum Sancti Bartholomei Apostoli et remanet in custodia Thome Styffe Et preceptum est quod
proclamatur per Curiam. HAWKESBURY. St. Martin, 12 Henry VII., 1496. Stoke. Decennarius et homagium presentat quod........
Et presentat quod Antonius Down, vid, et Thomas
Styff, vi“, brasiavit et fregit assisam. Pene per dominum. Item presentat quod Willelmum
Bullesdon permittit domum vocatum Towkers stare ruinosam et precipitur ei emendi citra proximum visum sub pena xiijs iiijd; Thomas Wykeham pro orio suo x®; Johannes Byrchald pro orio suo ; Johannes Birchald pro domo suo; Willelmus Bagepath similiter; Willelmus Forde similiter: Thomas Styff similiter habent in penam predictam.
HAWKESBURY. View of Frankpledge, Hockday, 12
Henry VII., 1497. Essoigns. John Styff. ...... Item -a presentment “super ten' Thome Styff
ruinos'”—apparently an order made for him to rebuild
it “de novo," but the entry is much obliterated. Ad istam curiam] venit Willelmus Styff et cepit in curia
reversionem j cotagii cum pertinentiis in Kylcote modo in tenura Edithe Dorney Tenendum sibi ...... uxori sue secundum consuetudinem cum accidit post decessum, vel recessum sive sursum redditum dicte Edithe ...... serviciis et con.... inde domino prius debitis. Et dat
domino de fine va. HAWKESBURY. View of Frankpledge, St. Martin, i
[Henry VIII?] 1509. Kylcote. Homagium ibidem exactum ex officio Juratores
presentant quod...... Nicholas Styffe ijd xxvj oves Et quod Nicholas Styffe habet penam...... proximam curiam bene et sufficienter emendare defectum plaustri
sui sub pena forisf cture domino. Stoke. Decennarius cum decena ibidem venit et presentat
...... Et quod Walterus Proud vja, Ricardus Ady, vi", Thomas Styffe via, Thomas Byke vi“, et Johannes, Davyes vi“, brasiavit et fregit assisam servisii.
The foregoing records are summarized in the following table, which gives the following names of the various individuals with the earliest and latest dates at which they respectively occur.
Zohn Styffe =Margaret
Nicholas = Agnes
Edith; Kilcot 1421
? Edith Dorney
John Kilcot 1500-12 Stoke 1470-1509
1497 William = Agnes Robert = Elinor Kilcot 1498 1 1544 Hawkesbury 1544 ? will 1544 will 1556 will 1544
Maisemore Bells. The following account of the new bells at Maisemore is taken from the Gloucester Chronicle of 6th September, 1884:
The new bells at Maisemore Church were dedicated on Sunday. The author of “The Book of Days” states that the existence of large bells in England is mentioned by Bede as early as A.D. 670; but a complete peal does not occur till 200 years later, when the Abbot of Croyland presented his abbey with seven bells. At this early date, and for some centuries after, bell-founding, like other scientific crafts, was carried on by the monks; and when bell-founding became a regular trade some of the founders travelled from place to place, stopping where they found business, but the majority had settled works in large towns. London, Gloucester, Salisbury, Bury St. Edmunds, Norwich, and Colchester have been the seats of eminent founders. In mediæval times bells were consecrated before they were raised to their places, each bell being dedicated to some divine personage, saint or martyr; and this practice is still followed in the Roman Catholic Church. The bells were treated in great measure as voices, and were inscribed with ejaculations and prayers in Latin. Pious queens and gentlewomen threw into the mass of metal that was to be cast into a bell their gold and silver ornaments; and a feeling of reverence for the interceding voices was common to both gentle and simple. In the Chapel at Sudely Castle there is a bell dated 1573 that tells of the concern which the gentle dames of the olden time would take in this manufacture. It says: “St. George, pray for us! The Ladie Dorathie Chandos, Widdowe made this.” Ancient bells are almost invariably of excellent tone, and as a rule are far superior to those cast in the present day. There is a popular idea that this is attributable to the older founders and their patrons adding silver to the bell-metal; but recent experiments have shown that the presence of silver spoils instead of improving the tone, in direct proportion to the quantity used. After the Reformation the inscriptions on bells were addressed to man, not to Heaven, and were almost universally rendered in English. There is, however, an exception in part to this rule at Sherborne, where there is a fire bell, dated 1652, addressed conjointly to Heaven and man thus: “Lord, quench this furious flame! Arise, run, help put out the same." Many of the legends on seventeenth-century bells reflect the
quaint lines of George Herbert. As a specimen of these is the following:
"I sweetly tolling, men doe call
To taste on meate that feeds the soule." As a contrast may be quoted this doggerel :“This bell was broake and cast againe, as plainly doth appeare,
John Draper made me in 1618, wich tyme chvrchwardens were Edward Dixson for the one, who stode close to his tacklin, And he that was his partner there was Alexander Jacklin." The great bell at Glasgow Cathedral tells its own history in the following inscription :—“In the year of grace, 1583, Marcus Knox, a merchant in Glasgow, zealous for the interest of the Reformed Religion, caused me to be fabricated in Holland for the use of his fellow-citizens of Glasgow, and placed me with solemnity in the tower of their Cathedral. I was taught to proclaim the hours of unheeded time. One hundred and ninety-five years had I sounded these awful warnings, when I was broken by the hands of inconsiderate and unskilful men. In the year 1790 I was cast into the furnace, refounded at London, and returned to my sacred vocation. Reader! Thou also shalt know a resurrection : may it be to eternal life.”
The Rev. F. E. Broome Witts, in his paper on “The Bells and Bell-founders of Gloucester Cathedral," published in the Records of the Cathedral Society, says there was a bellfoundry in Gloucester certainly as early as the reign of Edward the Third, and that the Gloucester craftsman of that period had a reputation far and wide. The foundry was no doubt established under the auspices of the monks, and the early founders were tenants or serfs of the Abbey. Master John of Gloucester was so renowned that the monks of Ely sent for him in 1345 to cast bells for their new belfry; and the Sacrist's Roll in the possession of the Chapter of Ely records that John of Gloucester cast four bells at Ely, and that he bought the necessary materials at various places and sent them to Ely by water. Among other Gloucester bell-founders were Robert Hendlel or Hendlei, whose name appears on a mediæval bell in the tower of St. Nicholas; William Henshaw, Mayor of Gloucester in 1503, 1508, and 1509, whose foundry was in Bell-lane, and who, with his two wives, was buried in St. Michael's Church, where the memorial brass to the wives still exists; and the famous Rudhall family, who were founders here for a century and a half. The oldest bell known to have come from the Rudhall foundry is at Oddington, and
bears date 1684; and their foundry was finally closed in 1828, a few years prior to the death of John Rudhall, the last of his famous race. Maisemore is assumed to have had a direct connection with the ancient bell-founders of Gloucester, though the assumption has only a slight foundation. Some years ago a founder's seal was found in the river Thames, the date of which has been assigned to about 1330. It bears the emblems of the founder's craft-a laver-pot orewer, and above it a bell; and around these is the legend, “S' Sandre de Gloucetre.” On the second bell of the Cathedral, which bears the legend, “Sancte Petre, ora pro nobis,” are the initials “J.S.," and the Rev. C. W. Lukis, an authority on the subject, has suggested that John of Gloucester's surname was “Sandre," and that these initials are his. The Abbey of Gloucester had a family of serfs belonging to its manor of Maisemore bearing the patronymic of Saunders, and there are in Abbot Parker's Register (1513-39) counterparts of the deeds of manumission of John Saunders, and of Thomas Saunders, clerk, both naifs of Maisemoor. It has been assumed, therefore, that these were descendants or family connections of John of Gloucester, the great bell-founder.
Of the bells in Maisemore Church, as they recently existed, four bore the date of 1629, one 1805, and the other 1826. As we stated last week, two of the oldest having become cracked, they have been re-cast, the whole peal has been re-hung, and on Sunday the new bells were dedicated. The service of dedication, though it has been used in several other churches, was a novelty in this part of the country. At morning service, after the third Collect, the Psalm, “O praise God in His holiness,” was sung; and then followed the prayers of dedication :-(1), That God, who by the mouth of Moses had commanded two silver trumpets to be made for the convocation of solemn assemblies, would be pleased to accept the offering ; (2), that whosoever shall be called by the sound of the bells to the house of prayer may enter His gates with thanksgiving, and finally have a portion of the new song in the house not made with hands; (3), that whosoever shall, by reason of sickness or other necessity, be kept from the House of the Lord, may in heart ascend thither and share in the communion of saints; (4), that they who with outward ears shall hear the bells may be aroused inwardly and draw nigh to the God of salvation ; (5), that all for whose passing away the bells shall sound may be received into Paradise ; (6), and that all who minister to the service by ringing the bells may be filled