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Lincoln, Lincolnshire

Historical Description

Lincoln, a city and county of itself, a municipal county and a parliamentary borough, head of the see of Lincoln, assize town, head of a union, county court district, and petty sessional division, capital of the county, and second largest town in Lincolnshire, one of the most ancient and certainly one of the most interesting of the cities of England. It stands partly on a lofty hillside overlooking the valley of the Witham, but chiefly in the valley itself, at the junction of the Eomau highways, the Ermine Street and the Fosse Way, at a convergence of railways, 18 miles SE from Gainsborough, 23 N from Grantham, 30 SW from Great Grimsby (the only town in the county which surpasses it in size), 36 NW of Boston, and 132 by road, but 138 by railway N by W from London. The Witham is naivigable from it for steamboats to the sea; the Fossdyke navigation connects it with the Trent, and with a ramified system of canals, and by means of the G.N.R., M.R., G.E.R., and M.S. & L.R. it has ready communication with all parts of the kingdom.

History.-Lincoln was the Caer-lindcoit or " the hill-fort of the pool " of the ancient Britons, the Lindum Colonia of the Romans, and the Lindeyllanceaster, the Lindcylne, the Lincolla, and the Lincolne of the Saxons. It took the first part of the ancient name in every case from the river Witham, which anciently was called Lindis, and it takes its present name from a combination of the syllables Un and coin, the latter of which is an abbreviation of the Roman Colonia. Only one other place throughout the whole dominion of ancient Rome still retains this ancient title, and that is the city of Cologne. It was a seat of population in the time of the ancient Britons, and it figured as a place of great importance in the times of the Romans, the Saxons, and the Normans. The Romans made it not only a station, but a strong-walled town. The Saxons besieged it in 518, were driven off by the Britons, took and lost and retook it in subsequent years, and made it one of the capitals of Mercia in 585. Edwin, King of Northumbria, obtained possession of all the portions of Lincolnshire N and E of it about 630, and St Paulinus, under Edwin's authority, first preached Christianity in the city, was well received by the governor and many of the inhabitants, and built here a stone church. The Danes repeatedly assailed or took the city and ravaged it.-1 They were repelled in 1016 by Edmund, son of Ethelred , but their authority was re-established, and Lincoln became the head of the Five Danish Burghs of Mercia. A castle-was built in it in 1086 by William the Conqueror to keep the inhabitants in awe, and so great was the castle that 166 mansions were taken down to make room for it. The Domes-day survey records the city to have contained 1070 mansions,. and to have had 950 burgesses. A great fire devastated it in 1110, and an earthquake seriously damaged it in 1185. The canal or Fossdyke from Lincoln to Torksey, originally formed by the Romans, was again made navigable by Henry I. The partizans of the Empress Maud got possession of the castle in 1140. It was invested by Stephen, but the Earl of Gloucester marched up from the west, defeated Stephen's army, and took him prisoner. Henry II., after having been crowned in London, came to Lincoln to bed-owned again, and he thus gave evidence of the high position which the city held in public estimation. David, King of Scotland, met King John here in 1200, and did him homage in the presence of a vast multitude. The rebel barons, in the interest of Louis the Dauphin of France, invested the city in 1217, they retired from it on the approach of John, they re-invested it on hearing that John had lost his army and had died, and they were attacked and vanquished by the Earl of Pembroke, regent to the youthful Henry III. The victors pillaged the city, and in consequence of the great booty which they found, the soldiers called their victory " Lincoln Fair." It came to the Lacys, and it passed to John of Gaunt, who in 1396 married here his mistress, Katherinfr Swinford, mother of the Beauforts. In 1352 the staple was removed from Flanders to six English towns, of which Lincoln was one, and it. consequently became a seat of trade for woollens, leather, and lead; it rebelled under Sir R. Wells against Edward IV., and shared in the disasters of the "battle of Lose Coat Field;" in 1536 it became the headquarters of the insurgents under Abbot Mackerel agaiiihfc the ecclesiastical reforms of the vicegerent Cromwell; and it declared for the king at the commencement of the civil wars of Charles I., but went early into possession of the Parliamentarians. The Royalists attempted to gain it by treachery, but failed, and they eventually took it by force. The Earl of Manchester, at the head of the Parliamentarian forces in 1644, stormed the lower part of the city. The Royalists made an obstinate resistance in the castle, but it was taken by storm and the cathedral sacked 3 May, 1644.

King Stephen kept Christmas here in 1147. Henry II. was here in 1158. King John, besides being here in 1200 to meet the King of Scotland, was here also in 1204. Several Jews were executed in 1255, on a charge of cincifying a child. Edward I. held here, in 1301, a parliament —hich asserted, his right to dispose of the crown of Scotland, and confirmed here, in 1305, the Magna Charta. Edward II. held parliaments here in 1316-17, and Edward III. in 1327. Richard II. was here in 1386, Henry VI. in 1446, Henry VII. in 1485, after Bosworth field; Henry VIII. in 1541, on his visit so-fatal to Catherine Howard; and Charles I. in 1642. Willis the physician, Hilton the painter, and Disney, Partridge, and Reyner, the theologians, were natives. The city gives the title of Earl to the Duke of Newcastle.

Site and Structure.-The situation of Lincoln is eminently picturesque. The city extends from the Witham, on each side, N and S, by one chief line of streets of considerable length, intersected by shorter cross streets. It stands principally on the N bank, on an eminence which rises rather abruptly from the low ground, but it occupies also a spacious low tract on the S. The upper or N section, locally designated " up-hill" or " above-hill," spreads over slopes and plateau to a height of 210 feet above the river, about a mile long and 1000 yards wide, and contains the cathedral, the castle, the lunatic asylum, some of the other public buildings, and many of the best private houses. The lower or S section is locally designated " below-hill," presents an appearance much inferior to that of the upper section, and contains the principal shops and inns, the markets, the least prominent of the public buildings, and most of the abodes of the working population. The exterior view, from the S, on the slope of the opposite hill, is peculiarly beautiful, comprising the open country on the left, the valley of the "Witham on the right, and the city itself in front, stretching from the level ground up and over the hill, covering the slopes with its houses and embowering trees, and exhibiting on the top, in bold relief against the bky, the porticoed asylum, the ivy-covered castle keep, and the magnificent mass and towers of the cathedral. Some interior views also, or rather views from the vantage-grounds of the city's upper section outward to the country, are eminently fine and of great extent, particularly toward Newark and Grantham on the S, and toward the Humber on the N. A vast extent of country, descending from the plateau of the Wolds, and spreading away in aflat expanse of fens, lies below the eye like a map, and thecathedral dominates sublimely over the whole so as to be visible from distances almost incredible, such as even from the hills beyond Buxton in Derbyshire.

The ancient British town occupied the crown of the hill, extended much farther N than the Newport or N gate of the subsequent Roman town, and has left vestiges in certain indications of ramparts and ditches still visible. The Roman town was a parallelogram, engirt by strong walls with four gates, enclosing the site of the cathedral close on the E, and that of the castle on the W, and divided into four equal parts by two streets crossing each other at right angles, and terminating at the gates. The S and the E gates were taken down at a comparatively recent period; the W gate was accidentally discovered, in 1836, among the great mounds of thecastle wall, but fell to pieces almost as soon as found; and the N gate still stands, bearing the name of Newport Gate, and gives admission to the city by the road from Hull, and is considered one of the most perfect and interesting extant English specimens of genuine Roman architecture, while it is the only Roman gate, with the exception of the Balkerne at Colchester, still existing in England. The main arch has a rude appearance, being composed of large coarse uncemented stones, while fully 11 feet of its height are sunk below the present level of the street. A smaller arch is at the E side; another of the same character was on the W side, but has perished. Another fortified wall, with corner towers, was built subsequently by the Romans to the S of the parallelogram, and this descended from the top of the hill to the bottom, turned there at right angles, and went along parallel to the river. The Roman walls were greatly altered or destroyed by the Saxons in their refortifications of the town; they also underwent alterations and additions at subsequent periods, particularly during the Civil Wars; yet they have left many remains of ramparts and ditches, though these are now of such mutilated and mixed character that it is very difficult to define what portions of them are really Roman and what portions are Saxon or Norman. The Roman Ermine Street still gives its name to the continuation northward of the city's principal street towards the Humber; it passes through the extant Roman or Newport Gate, and for 11 or 12 miles thence it is as straightas an arrow. The Fossdykp, also, though so cut or cleared out as to be a navigable channel in the time of Henry I., is supposed to have originally been a work of the Romans. Many Roman coins, tablets, inscriptions, and other Roman relics have been found. An ancient burial-ground, supposed to have been attached to one of the earliest churches, was discovered about the middle of the 19th century at the widening of a road up to the asylum, and the tombs in it were rough flat stones laid together in the manner of a rude receptacle for the body, without any coffin. In 1879, in making a drain along the Bailgate, a Roman milestone of the Emperor M. Piavonius Victorious (A.D. 265-67) was discovered. In 1884, in digging the foundations of the tower of the new church of St Swithin, a very perfect Roman altar, 3 feet high, and hewn out of a single block of oolite, was found, which is believed to date from the end of the second or the beginning of the third century. In the same year, in digging foundations for some new houses at the comer of Eastgate, a Roman burial-place with urns and other vessels was discovered. In 1891 the remains of a Roman villa with tessellated pavements were uncovered by the miners of the Mid-Lincolnshire Iron Company in the fields to the east of the city. Fragments of very ancient buildings, Saxon, Norman, and Early English, and comprising arches, doorways, turrets, mullioned windows, and pieces of wall, are .remarkably numerous, but for the most part have been so absorbed by other buildings, or so desecrated or so severely damaged as to be interesting only to enthusiastic antiquaries. The remains of the castle and some portions of churches will afterwards be noticed separately. An ancient building, now called St Mary's conduit, at the W end of the church of St Mary-le-Wigford, is made up of architectural fragments of the 14th century. The remains of a house in which John of Gaunt lived with his wife, Katherine Swinford, are now included in a modern-looking mansion in the southern skirts of the city, close to the London Road, and had a remarkably beautiful small oriel window of the 14th century, which has been removed and placed between the gateways of the castle. Two remaining sides of a very old quadrangular house, originally the Hall of St Mary's Guild, are on the opposite side of the road, and the entry to it passes under a semicircular arch, with zigzag or Norman decoration. This is described in Parker's " Domestic Architecture " as being " probably the most valuable and extensive range of buildings of the 12th century that we have remaining in England." Another domestic building of Norman architecture is on the W side of the Steep Hill, shows a singulariy ornamented front, and has a semicircular arched entry decorated with mouldings. This is usually called the Jews' House, because it was inhabited by a Jewess named Belaset de Wallingford, who was hanged for clipping coin in the time of Edward I.; and as it has, over the semicircular-arched entry, a chimney projection for a room on the second floor, it has been dep'cted and described in the " Pictorial History of England " as evidence that, in the Norman times, the principal room of a house was on the next above the ground floor. A timber house up an entry, near to the Great Northern stables, is a good specimen of the timber architecture of the 15th century. A second Jew's house, that of Aaron the Jew, the greatest moneylender of the 12th century, stands higher up the hill, at the corner of Christ's Hospital Terrace. It retains a semicircular headed doorway, and a two-light Transitional window.

Yet the city has really undergone great modern improvement. Many old houses have been demolished or modernised, many new ones have been built, and some streets and outskirts present an entirely new aspect. Water for the supply of the inhabitants is brought from Prial Brook, some miles distant, and is sent to the upper part of the city by means of a steam engine. There are also three conduits filled by a spring rising near the Monks' House, besides reservoirs which give supply to the lower parts of the city. One of them has already been noticed as standing at the W end of the church of St Mary-le-Wigford, and the other conduits are at the High Bridge and the Grey Friars. A large common on the W of the city gives a right of grazing for three cattle to every resident freeman, and for one to every other householder, and contains a racecourse, where races are held twice a year in March and October, and which has a grand stand erected by the old corporation at a cost of £6000, and enlarged in 1886 at a cost of £2000. Another common on the S gives rights similar to those given by the W common, and foimerly two other fields, called the Holmes and the Monks' Leys, belonged exclusively to the freemen. In 1883, however, Holmes Common was sold to the M.S.&L.R. Company, and the purchase money invested for the benefit of the freemen and freemen's widows of the city, while the Monks' Leys has been converted into a public arboretum, the freemen receiving from the corporation the sum of £200 a year in lieu of their rights of pasturage. The city is well drained by means of an extensive system of sewerage, the works of which, commenced in 1871, were completed ten years later at a total cost of upwards of £100,000. A spacious piece of water, called Brayford, is a harbour for vessels; is surrounded with wharves, warehouses, and flour mills, and commands very beautiful views of the upper part of the city.

Public Buildings.-The Castle, though extensively demolished and now a mere ruin, still presents an imposing appearance. The gateway has an elegant pointed arch and a massive battlemented superstructure, and is supposed to belong to the 14th century. Remains of the original gateway, as built by William the Conqueror, are immediately within the arch. The keep stands half within and half without the walls, occupies the summit of a high, very large, and very strongly-formed artificial mound, and must, before the invention of modern artillery, have been almost impregnable. The walls inclose an area of about 6½ acres, part of which is laid out as a garden; they stand upon vast earthworks, sloping down exteriorly to a great depth; they measure now from 17 to 30 feet in height, and from 5 feet at the top to a gradual increase downward in thickness; and were formerly surmounted by battlements 5 feet high and 2 broad. At the NE comer is a slightly horse-shoe drum tower, called Cobb Hall, which has finely groined roofs and vastly thick walls, and communicates by a trap-door with a dungeon-cell below. The County Hall stands on the W side of the castle-yard, was erected after designs by Smirke in 1826, in the castellated style, includes also the assize courts, and, inclusive of its internal decorations, cost nearly £40,000. The former County Jail stands on the south side of the castle-yard, is a brick building within a walled inclosure, and has capacity for 77 male and 15 female prisoners, though it is no longer used as a prison. H.M. Prison, on the Greetwell Eoad, is a building of red brick and Ancaster stone; it was erected in 1872 at a cost of about £39,000, and has capacity for 300 prisoners. At present this is the only house of correction in the county. The Judges' Lodging, for the accommodation of the judges during the assizes, stands on the Castle HilL The Stone Bow, rebuilt in 1520, which occupies the site of the S gate of the extended Roman city, is a very fine example of a town gate of the 16th century; stands across High Street, in a line with the southern boundary of the extended Roman city; comprises a large pointed gateway, with flanking circular turrets, all decorated with mouldings, and embattled; and has, in a niche in the E turret, a large statue of the angel Gabriel holding a scroll-in another niche an effigies of the Virgin Mary trampling on a serpent. The long upper room, with a timbered roof of the Perpendicular period, constitutes the Guildhall, and contains some very ancient and curious chests and some portraits, including one of Queen Anne by Kneller. The High Bridge over the Witham has a main arch 21½ feet in span and 11 high, the centre being Norman. On the W side it still supports some old houses, and on the E side there was a chapel of St Thomas of Canterbury, which was taken down when the bridge was widened, its site being occupied by a rustically-ornamented obelisk, erected in 1763. This is the only bridge now remaining in England that preserves the houses on it, and that only on its W side. Two other old bridges formerly crossed a feianch of the Witham in the line of the principal street, but they were taken down and superseded by a handsome new one in 1813. The old Corn Exchange, in the High Street, is a building in the Classic style, erected in 1847-48, and converted into an arcade of shops in 1880. The present Corn Exchange, near the Comhill, was erected in 1879-80 at a cost of about —£7500, comprises a covered market with shops and warehouses, and a large and elegant room for public meetings, concerts, and festivals. A row of shops, called the New Market, is on the S side of the former corn exchange. A Cattle Market in Monks Eoad was formed in 1848, and has attached to it a commodious hotel. The Midland Counties Insurance Office, in Silver Street, erected in 1851, is an elegant edifice in the modern Classic style. The Lawn Hospital for the insane is a handsome edifice 260 feet long, has a noble front with Ionic portico, has also a statue of Dr Edward P. Chariesworth, erected in 1854, is conducted without any measures of coercion, and has usually from 80 to 100 patients. The County Hospital, in Sewell Eoad, erected in 1878 at a cost of about £32,000, is a large building of red brick in the Eenaissance style. The General Dispensary, founded in 1826, now occupies a building of red brick in the Eenaissance style which was erected in 1879 in Silver Street at a cost of upwards of £2000. The Masonic Hall and Concert Eoom, Newland, erected in 1875, is a building of red brick in the Venetian Gothic style. The concert room, which has been converted into a theatre, will seat 1000 persons. The Military Barracks, on the E side of Burton Eoad, occupy a site of about 24 acres, and were erected in 187& at a cost of about £48,000. The Workhouse, situated near the Lunatic Asylum, was erected in 1837, is a spacious building, and will accommodate about 270 inmates. It was greatly altered and improved in 1880 at a cost of about £12,000. The Mechanics' Institution was opened in 1832 on the ground floor of the same building as the grammar school, on part of the site of the Franciscan friary, was removed to the city assembly rooms in 1868, and on the conversion of that building into a free library in 1894, was again transferred to St Michael's Guild Court, on the Steepkils. It contains a library of about 20,000 volumes and a museum containing antiquities found in the city and its neighbourhood and many hundred specimens in natural history. A fine Volunteer Brill Hall was erected in 1890 and a new Liberal Club in 1892. There are newsrooms, assembly rooms, and a theatre. The Arboretum, formed out of Monks' Leys Common, has an area of 13 acres, is planted with shrubs and flowers, and contains a bandstand and a small lake. Other public buildings will be noticed in subsequent paragraphs.

The Cathedral.-The Cathedral of Lincoln, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, occupies a more commanding site than any other cathedral in England except Durham, and, as already noticed, both makes a conspicuous figure over a great extent of circumjacent country, and is distinctly visible at remarkably great distances in other counties. It also is so grand in itself as to have no rival in England, except perhaps the minster of York. It likewise forms a splendid study to the architect and the antiquary, as containing within its compass every variety of style, from the simple massive Norman to the latest stage of Pointed art. It once, too, had magnificence of another kind, for in 1540 it lost by pillage 2621 ounces of gold, 4285 ounces of silver, and a countless number of rich pearls, diamonds, rubies, sapphires, carbuncles, and other gems. It comprises two western towers and a central one; a nave of seven bays, with aisles; a W transept, with chapels; a great transept, with three bays and three eastern chantries in each wing; a Galilee porch on the SW side of the main transept; a choir of seven bays, with aisles; a S chapel called Bishop Long-land's chantry; a choir transept of two bays, with apsidal chapels in each wing, and with St Hugh's chapel attached to the N wing, and a lavatory and three sacristies attached to the S wing; a presbytery, Lady chapel, or angel choir of three bays, with aisles, having Bishop Fleming's chapel on the N side and Bishop Eussell's on the S side; and a cloister and a chapter-house, the former N of the choir, and the latter reached from it by a vestibule. The ground covered by the pile measures 2 acres 2 roods 6 perches. The W front is 173 feet long and 83 high; the western towers are 35 feet along each side and 206 high; the central tower is 53 feet along each side and 268 high; each tower was formerly surmounted by a spire 101 feet high; the nave is 255 feet long, 80 wide, and 80 high; the main transept is 222 feet long, 61 wide, and 74 high; the choir is 158 feet long, 80 wide, and 74 high; the choir transept, with chantries, is 170 feet long, 44 wide, and 72 high; the presbytery is 116 feet long, 82 wide, and 72 high; the cloister is 81 feet long from N to S, and 90 wide; the chapter-house is 62 feet in diameter, and 42 high; and the entire pile is 486 feet long. The building material is the oolitic and calcareous stone of the vicinity, and this has the peculiarity of becoming coated with a hard surface, which serves very considerably to prevent or retard decay.

The cathedral was commenced in 1075 by Bishop Eemigius, and completed by him in 1092; after suffering much injury from a fire, it was repaired and vaulted in 1141 by Alexander. Additions to the original W front, the entire E transept and chapels, the choir and the chapter-house, were built in 1186-1203 by St Hugh and his successors. /The Galilee porch and the W side of the main transept were finished soon after St Hugh's death. The rood-screen and the cloister were commenced in the time of Edward I. The nave was completed in 1206-35 by Hugh of Wells. The central tower, originally ill-built, fell suddenly in 1237, and was rebuilt one storey above the roof by Grosteste. The presbytery was begun in 1256 by Lexington, and completed in 1282 by Oliver Sntton. The upper portion of the central tower, and the spire which surmounted it, were built in 1300-19 by Dalderby. The monuments of the Burghersh chantry were erected in 1320-42 by Henry Burghersh. The statues and some windows in the W front, the groined roofs of the three towers, and the stalls of the choir were erected in 1351-81 by the treasurer Welbonme. Bishop Fleming's chapel, dedicated to the Holy Trinity, was built in 1420-31 by Eichard Fleming. The great W window and the upper parts of the western towers were built in 1436-50 by William Ainwick. Bishop Eussell's chapel, dedicated to St Blaise, was built in 1480-95 by John Ru&sell. Bishop Longland's chapel, dedicated to St Catherine, was huilt in 1521-47 by John Longland. The spire of the central tower was destroyed by a storm in 1547; the spires of the western towers were taken down in 1807, and lightning conductors were placed along the body of the nave and on the corners of the towers in 1865. In 1884 the whole of the open parapet on the western side of the great central tower was blown down by a storm, and this rendered the remaining three sides so insecure as to necessitate complete restoration. Eestorations of the cathedral at great cost and with happy results have been effected at considerable cost since the early part of the 19th century. One series of them, during fourteen years terminating in 1859, cost nearly £22,000. In 1865 the west front was scraped and the decayed columns of the west doorways replaced with modern copies. In 1878 an important repair of the falling SW tower was carried out. A vyry great improvement, effected during recent years, has been the lowering of the ground round the nave, which had covered the base mouldings of the buttresses to the depth of about 3 feet. The false bases added at a higher level have been removed, and others, copied from one of the original designs, have been supplied in the old position. One result of this restoration is that the cathedral is now entered by ascending instead of descending steps, a circumstance which adds considerably to the dignity of the building.

The W front shows a Norman base covered with arcades, a broad Early English screen above, and octagonal pinnacled towers at the sides. The centre and lateral arched recesses iire portions of the original front of Eemigius. The bases of the towers and the adjacent gables are the work of Alexander. A statue of the Swineherd of Stow is on the N, and one of St Hugh is on the S spirelet. The Norman doorways are deeply recessed; an arcade of canopied statues of kings, from William the Conqueror to Edward III., is above the doorway; and a lofty Later English arch, with a cinquefoil above it, is beneath the gable. The front has also a series of emblematic sculptures, rude and quaint, but highly interesting; and it presents, on the whole, an imposing and elaborate appearance; yet it suffers the serious defect of exhibiting a comparatively great surface of masonry unrelieved by glass. The western towers have a base of three tiers of arcade; the belfry stages show on each face two very large windows of two lights, with magnificent canopies; and are crowned at the angles with turrets surmounted by pinnacles. The central tower rests grandly on four arches; it is of similar design to the western towers, but much more richly decorated; and is so traversed or honey-combed with galleries and passages as almost to have two walls. The famous bell called Great Tom was cast at Lincoln in 1610, and hung in the north-western tower; cracked and became useless in December, 1827; was recast in Xovember, 1834, by Thomas Mears of Whitechapel; and was hung in the central tower in 1835. It weighs 5 tons 8 cwts., and is 6 feet 10 inches in diameter. The nave is divided by piers, with filleted columns; its triforium has in each bay two arches subdivided into three lights, except in the two western bays, where there are only two lights; and its clerestory has three pointed lights in each compartment. The morning chapel is on the N side of the nave aisles, and the consistory court is on the S. The S front of the main transept has a Decorated window of five lights and a double-crocketed gable set between two tall pinnacles; and the N front forms a porch with pedimented canopy, and has seven lancets in the gable, flanked with turret pinnacles. Each end of the transept is lighted with a rose window, each 24 feet in diameter, filled with stained glass. The open central lantern has a double arcade, the upper one a clerestory, and terminates in stone-vaulting, 127 feet from the pavement. The angel choir has an E end of three gables-the central one loftier than the others, and separated by ornate double buttresses, terminating in octagonal pinnacles and crocketed spirelets. It has a central window of eight lights, with geometrical tracery, and above it a window of five lights with flowing tracery; lias windows and pinnacles of the same character in the aisles; has a magnificent S porch, with deeply recessed doorw.iv. gabled and flanked with pinnacles, and adorned with statues of the evangelists. The spandrily of the triforium contain thirty sculptures representing angels playing on the shawm, the harp, the rebec, the cittern, th& tabor, and other instruments. The cloister is remarkable for adjoining the choir rather than the nave; it is geometrical Decorated, with two windows in each bay. The N alley is in the Doric style, built by Sir Christopher Wren, surmounted by the library, and contains a portion of Roman tessellated pavement discovered in 1793. The chapter-house is decagonal; it shows a W front of three pedimented arcaded compartments;. has a vaulted stone roof, supported externally by flying buttresses, and internally by a central pier of Pnrbeck marble with ten engaged columns; and was probably the earliest of the many polygonal chapter-houses, with central supporting piers, in Britain. It was restored in 1889.

The numerous chapels and chantries in the cathedral exhibit characters and decorations in full keeping with the rest; of the pile. The rood or organ screen (about 1310) shows exquisite workmanship of the Early Decorated period. Tho oak stalls are of the 14th century and sixty-two in number, and they have intricate canopies and misereres, sculptured and carved with great variety of subject. Eighty-seven tombs were in the nave, and very many in the other parts prior to the Civil Wars of Charles I., but nearly all were mutilated or destroyed at the storming of the city by the Earl of Manchester. The principal monuments now are- at the east end of the N aisle of the choir, an effigies of Baron Burghersh of 1356, beneath a canopy with three tabernacles, and an effigies of Bishop Burghersh of 1340; at the east end of the S aisle, mutilated effigies of Lord Cantilupe-of 1355, and of Prior Wymbish of Xocton; in the S transept, remains of the shrine of Dalderby; in Trinity chapel, cffi-gies and cadaver of Bishop Fleming; in St Blaise's chapel,. altar-tomb and screen of Bishop Eus

Transcribed from The Comprehensive Gazetteer of England & Wales, 1894-5


The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.

Ancient CountyLincolnshire 
Poor Law unionLincoln 

Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.

Church Records

Findmypast, in conjunction with the Lincolnshire Archives, have the following parish records online for Lincoln:

St Andrew1878-1911 1884-1911 
St Benedict1652-1854 1652-18531655-1854
St Botolph1561-1911 1561-19111562-1876
St Faith1899-1911 1899-19111899-1911
St John in Newport1736-1861  1748-1803
St Margaret in the Close1697-1911 1697-17541697-1871
St Mark1660-1911 1662-19111661-1877
St Martin1560-19111753-17761548-19111548-1868
St Mary le Wigford1623-1911 1564-19111562-1911
St Mary Magdalene1665-19111754-18301667-19111665-1902
St Michael on the Mount1562-1911 1563-19111562-1891
St Nicholas1693-1901 1746-19111736-1911
St Paul in the Bail1694-19111845-18451694-19111694-1889
St Peter at Arches1561-19111754-17811561-19111561-1856
St Peter at Gowts1540-1911 1538-19111539-1880
St Peter in Eastgate1662-1911 1662-19111662-1911
St Swithin1686-1911 1686-19111686-1907

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Lincoln from the following:


Online maps of Lincoln are available from a number of sites:

Newspapers and Periodicals

The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Lincolnshire papers online:

RegionEast Midlands
Postal districtLN1
Post TownLincoln