Craike, or Crayke (St. Cuthbert)

CRAIKE, or Crayke (St. Cuthbert), a parish, in the union of Easingwould, W. division of the wapentake of Bulmer, N. riding of York, 3 miles (E. by N.) from Easingwould; containing 579 inhabitants. Egfrid, King of Northumbria, in 685 gave this place, with land extending three miles round it, to St. Cuthbert; and a monastery is mentioned by Simeon of Durham as existing here, at the time of the Danish invasion in 883, when the bones of St. Cuthbert were brought to Craike, villam vocabulo Crecam, for refuge. Etha, a hermit, who lived here at an earlier period, is noticed as a famous saint by the same authority. The parish comprises by measurement 2756 acres, about three-fifths of which are arable, and the remainder pasture, with the exception of 10 acres of plantation. Above the village, on an eminence, stand the ruins of Craike Castle, probably built by Bishop Pudsey in Stephen's reign, now converted into a farmhouse: the estate, which was in the hands of the bishops of Lindisfarne first, and of Durham after the removal of the see, from the time of St. Cuthbert to the prelacy of Bishop Van Mildert, was sold by the latter, by virtue of an act of parliament. The ruined castle is a picturesque object to the country around, and commands a view which is only bounded by the horizon of the plain of York, and extending to the Wolds of the East riding, and the hills of Craven on either side. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £10, and in the patronage of the Bishop of Ripon: the tithes have been commuted for £678, and the glebe comprises 52 acres, with a good residence. The church is a neat edifice of the fifteenth century, with a tower. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans.

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

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