Bradley, Maiden (All Saints)

BRADLEY, MAIDEN (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Mere, partly in the hundred of Norton-Ferris, E. division of the county of Somerset, but chiefly in the hundred of Mere, Warminster and S. divisions of Wilts, 5¾ miles (N. by W.) from Mere; containing, with the tything of Yarnfield, 700 inhabitants. The parish is the property of the Duke of Somerset, who has a seat here; and comprises 4208 acres, of which 1400 are arable, 1860 pasture, 506 down, and 362 wood: the soil is various, and for the most part good rich land. The district abounds with romantic and interesting scenery; there are two singular knolls of chalk, separated from each other by the turnpike-road leading to Wincanton. Fairs, formerly of importance, are held on April 25th and September 21st. About three-quarters of a mile to the north-east of the village, and now forming part of the buildings of a farm called Priory Farm, are the remains of an hospital founded by Manasser Biset, about the close of the reign of Stephen or the beginning of that of Henry II., and dedicated to the Blessed Virgin. It was for leprous women, under the care of some secular brethren, who were afterwards changed by Herbert, Bishop of Sarum, into a prior and canons of the Augustine order; and at the Dissolution, the revenue was £197. 18. 8. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £111; patrons and appropriators, the Dean and Canons of Christ-Church, Oxford. The church contains a monument, finely executed, to the memory of Sir Edward Seymour, Bart., of political celebrity in the reigns of Charles II., William and Mary, and Anne.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, 7th edition, published in 1848.

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