Conington (All Saints)

CONINGTON (All Saints), a parish, in the hundred of Norman-Cross, union and county of Huntingdon, 3 miles (S. E. by S.) from Stilton; containing 224 inhabitants. The lordship, together with the ancient castle, of which there are some vestiges in the village, was given by Canute to Turkill, a Danish lord, who, taking advantage of his residence among the East Angles, invited over Sueno to plunder the country. After Turkill's departure it fell to Waldeof, Earl of Huntingdon, who married Judith, niece to the Conqueror, from whom it descended to the royal line of Scotland, and thence to the Cottons, ancestors of Sir Robert Cotton, celebrated for his valuable collection of books and MSS., known by the name of the Cottonian Library. The parish is situated near the north road, between Alconbury Hill and Stilton, and comprises 3089 acres, which consist partly of highland and partly of fen, the former a clayey soil, and the lower parts extremely fertile, with some excellent meadow and pasture. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £19. 6. 8., and in the gift of J. Heathcote, Esq.: the tithes have been commuted for £450, and the glebe contains 27 acres, with a glebe-house, lately built. The church is a large handsome structure, erected in the reign of Henry VII., and has an embattled tower with octagonal pinnacles; the interior has lately undergone extensive repairs, and contains many monuments to the Cottons, and an inscribed tablet to the memory of Prince Henry of Scotland, Lord of Conington, &c. The Rev. James Oram, in 1769, left £1000 for the endowment of two schools, one being at this place. Sir Robert Cotton, on making an excavation for a pond, found the skeleton of a sea fish, twenty feet long, lying in perfect silt, about six feet below the surface of the ground.

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

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