Byland-Abbey

BYLAND-ABBEY, a township, in the parish of Coxwold, union of Helmsley, wapentake of Birdforth, N. riding of York, 7 miles (S. W. by W.) from Helmsley; containing 97 inhabitants. The township comprises 1527a. 3r. 30p., of which 444 acres are arable, 414 meadow and pasture, and 669 wood, water, and common. A monastery and church were founded here, in 1177, by the abbot and monks of Furness in Lancashire, who, having been disturbed by the Scots, fled to this part of the country, and were well received by Roger de Mowbray, at Thirsk Castle, who assigned lands at Byland for their support: at the Dissolution the revenue was estimated at £238. 9. 4. Of the abbey, which was a magnificent structure, the western front and other parts yet remain, in a high state of preservation, and afford a beautiful specimen of early English architecture: on the removal of a quantity of rubbish in the year 1818, was found a stone coffin, containing a perfect skeleton, conjectured to be that of Roger de Mowbray; and at the same time, fragments of a tessellated pavement were discovered.

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

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