Hereford

HEREFORD, an ancient city, having separate jurisdiction, and the head of a union, locally in the hundred of Grimsworth, county of Hereford, of which it is the chief town, 135 miles (W. N. W.) from London; containing, exclusively of the townships of Lower Bullingham and Grafton, in the parish of St. Martin, hundred of Webtree, 10,921 inhabitants. This place probably derived its name of Her-ford, or Here-ford, which is pure Saxon, importing "a military ford," from its having been, previously to the erection of the bridge, a pass over the river Wye. It is said to have become the head of a see before the invasion of Britain by the Saxons; but in 655, Oswy, King of Mercia, made it part of the diocese of Lichfield, which then included the whole Mercian kingdom. At a synod held here by Theodore, Archbishop of Canterbury, in 673, the division of the diocese of Lichfield was decreed. Wilford, bishop of that see, refused assent to the decree, and was subsequently deprived of part of his diocese for contumacy; but with the consent of Sexulph, his successor, Hereford was disunited from Lichfield, and restored to its original independence as a distinct diocese, and Putta, who previously held the see of Rochester, was made bishop in 680. It was the capital of the kingdom of Mercia, and possessed a large church in the reign of Offa, who, it is stated, founded the cathedral in expiation of the murder of Ethelbert, King of the East Angles, whose body was removed hither from its original place of sepulture, in 782. In the reign of Athelstan the city occupied an area 1800 yards in circuit, and, with the exception of an extent of 550 yards guarded by the river, which formed a natural barrier, was surrounded with walls sixteen feet in height, having six gates, and fifteen embattled towers thirty-four feet high: to these fortifications, which were nearly perfect in Leland's time, a castle was added by Edward the Elder. About 1055, a battle was fought two miles from this place, between Ralph, Earl of Hereford, and Grufydd, Prince of Wales, the former of whom was defeated; and the Welsh, having taken the city, massacred the inhabitants, and reduced it to a heap of ruins. Harold, afterwards king, marched against the Welsh, whom he attacked and defeated with great slaughter: he then repaired the fortifications and enlarged the castle, to secure the city against future inroads of the invaders.

From the earliest period the citizens have enjoyed a high reputation for loyalty, and Hereford has in consequence been the scene of many sanguinary conflicts and sieges. It held out successfully against the first attack of Stephen, who was opposed by Milo, son of Walter, constable of England. For this service, Milo was made Earl of Hereford, by the Empress Maud, in 1141; the patent, which is still extant, being the first ever granted for the creation of an earl; but in the same year Stephen, having again laid siege to the city, reduced it, and divested Milo of his recent honours. King John, when the French Dauphin had landed with his army in England, retired to this city in the vain hope of procuring succour. During the war between Henry III. and the barons, Hereford was made the place of rendezvous by the latter; and in the same reign Prince Edward, after his capture at the battle of Lewes, was kept a prisoner by Bohun, Earl of Hereford, in the castle of this place, whence he made his escape previously to the battle of Evesham. The great council of the realm assembled here to decide on the deposition of Edward II.; and here likewise Hugh le Despencer, the Earl of Arundel, and three others, were executed. At the commencement of the parliamentary war, Hereford was garrisoned for the king, but on the approach of an army under Sir William Waller, in April, 1643, was surrendered without opposition: on the retreat of Waller it was again occupied by a party of royalists, who, under the governorship of Barnabas Scudamore, made a gallant defence against the Scots, commanded by the Earl of Leven, who was forced to raise the siege. The city was subsequently the scene of some minor transactions during the war, and was ultimately taken by stratagem, when the castle was dismantled, and the fortifications levelled, by order of the parliament. At the Restoration the inhabitants received from Charles II. a new charter, with extended privileges; also new heraldic bearings, emblematical of fidelity to the royal cause.

The city occupies a gentle eminence on the northern bank of the Wye, and is surrounded by a fertile tract of country, consisting of orchards, with rich arable and pasture land; the environs, especially along the banks of the river, are celebrated for their beauty. The principal streets are wide and airy, and, together with the lanes and passages, are well lighted with gas, and paved under the provisions of an act of parliament; the town is also abundantly supplied with water. The houses in general are good, and during the last 50 years, considerable improvements have been made in the appearance of the place. A bridge of six arches was erected over the river, about the end of the fifteenth century, replacing a wooden bridge built in the reign of Henry I. The Hereford Reading Society was established in 1796; and in 1815, a permanent library, containing a valuable collection of ancient and modern works, was instituted by the late Benjamin Fallows, Esq. An agricultural society was founded in 1797, and a horticultural society in 1826. A philosophical institution was lately established, under the auspices of the Dean of Hereford and Henry Lawson, Esq.; lectures are delivered monthly during the winter season, and it possesses a museum of fossil and mineral productions, principally found in the county. The theatre, a commodious edifice in Broad-street, was erected about 1789. Races are held in August, when a gold cup, three plates of £50 each, and sweepstakes are run for; the course has been greatly improved, and a grand stand, of elegant design, has been erected under the superintendence of Mr. Adams, architect. Assemblies commence in December, and are held generally once a month during the winter season. The triennial music meetings of the choirs of Hereford, Worcester, and Gloucester, established in 1724, take place here during three days in September; oratorios are performed in the morning at the cathedral, and in the evening miscellaneous concerts and balls are held at the county hall: the receipts, after payment of the expenses, are appropriated to the benefit of widows and orphans of the clergy. A neat and commodious building has been erected in the Castle green, on the bank of the Wye, in which are warm baths, and above these a handsome room used as a reading-room. The walks in the Castle green form an agreeable resort for the inhabitants, and are, for beauty of scenery, superior to most places of this description in the kingdom.

From the want of greater facility of communication, Hereford has never attained eminence in trade or manufactures. The principal articles of trade are, gloves, which, however, are made in less quantities than formerly; cider and hops, the latter of which are extensively cultivated in the vicinity; and oak and oak-bark. A considerable quantity of timber and bark is sent to Chepstow, and shipped thence for Ireland, and the different ports and yards for ship-building in England. There are also a distillery, a brewery, and an iron-foundry. Salmon of excellent quality are caught in the Wye, but not in so great abundance as formerly. To remedy the inconvenience arising from the difficulty of navigation in the river, an act of parliament was obtained in 1791, for cutting a canal from the Severn at Gloucester, which was completed to Ledbury, and, under the provisions of a recent act of parliament, has been extended to this city. Coal is principally supplied from the Forest of Dean, in Gloucestershire, by conveyance up the Wye, which is navigable for barges of from 18 to 30 tons (for towing which a path was made by act of parliament in 1809); and from the neighbourhood of Abergavenny, along a railroad to Monmouth Cap, thirteen miles hence. In 1826, an act was procured to extend the railroad to Hereford, which design having been completed, the supply of coal has been materially increased, and the price diminished; it is under the direction of three different companies, and is called the Llanvihangel, Grosmont, and Hereford tramroad. In 1845 an act was passed for a railway from Hereford to Monmouth, 22 miles in length; and in 1846 two acts were obtained, one for a railway to Shrewsbury, the other for a railway to Pont-ypool. In 1668, Lord Scudamore left £400 to be lent without interest, in order to establish a woollen manufactory; but not being applied for, the sum was put out to interest, and in 1772, £500 were expended in an attempt to instruct the poorer class in spinning wool, which, however, failed: the remainder of the bequest has increased to £3000 three per cents. In 1840 an act of parliament was passed for amending a former act, to regulate the charity, and for the improvement of the city; under which new trustees have been appointed, and powers granted, to employ the funds in various ways for the benefit of the poor, in providing schools for their instruction, and in other modes of relief. A portion of the trust money is occasionally lent to manufacturers of woollen-cloths, flannel goods, &c., for a limited time, without interest, to afford employment to the poor inhabitants, especially women and children.

The markets are on Wednesday and Saturday. Fairs are held on the Tuesday after Candlemas-day; on the Wednesday in Easter-week, for cattle and sheep; May 19th; July 1st, for cattle and wool; and October 20th, a great fair for cattle and hops. At the May fair, granted by Henry I. to Bishop Richard, soon after 1120, and commonly known as the "nine days' fair," the bishop's bailiff, or bailiff of the manor called the Barton or the Bishop's fee, had once considerable power, but not extending to the exercise of magisterial authority. As lords of this fee, the bishops also formerly exercised much authority in the city. The fair has now been reduced by act of parliament to two days, and the tolls have been ceded to the town-council for the benefit of the city, a corn rent of £5 being paid to the bishop in lieu thereof. In 1810, an act was passed for forming a market-place, and effecting other improvements, which contained a clause providing accommodation for slaughtering cattle; and in 1822, fourteen slaughter-houses were erected, on the site of part of the old city wall, northward of the market-place. The fish-market is well supplied with sea fish from Wales, Bristol, and London.

Hereford was first incorporated by charter of Richard I., dated at Westminster, Oct. 9th, 1189, and subsequently received numerous other charters from successive monarchs, under the last of which the government was vested in a chief and a deputy steward (the former directed by the charter to be an "illustrious and discreet man"), and 31 chief citizens, forming the common-council and governing body, from which a mayor, six aldermen, a custumar, coroner, two chamberlains, and town-clerk, were chosen. By the act of 5th and 6th of William IV., cap. 76, the corporation now consists of a mayor, 6 aldermen, and 18 councillors; the city is divided into three wards, and the number of magistrates is eleven. The freedom is inherited by the eldest sons of freemen, and is acquired by servitude to a freeman within the city, or by marriage with a freeman's widow, or with the eldest daughter of a freeman, provided he has no male issue; but in the two latter instances the elective franchise is withheld. The franchise was conferred in the 23rd of Edward I., since which time the city has regularly returned two members to parliament. The right of election, by the act of the 2nd of William IV., cap. 45, is vested in the freemen resident within seven miles, and the £10 householders living within the liberties; the ancient boundaries are retained, including an area of 4345 acres. The mayor is returning officer. Quarterly courts of sessions are held, at which the recorder presides; and there are meetings daily at the guildhall, for determining on affairs of police, by the city justices; also a court of record on Monday and Thursday, for the recovery of debts to any amount, under the charter of James I., confirmed by William III. The county assizes, and the election for knights of the shire, are held here; likewise the petty-sessions for the hundred of Grimsworth, every Saturday; and, under certain restrictions, those of Oyer and Terminer for the whole of South Wales. The powers of the county debt-court of Hereford, established in 1847, extend over the registration-district of Hereford and part of that of Weobley.

The old town and shire hall, built in the reign of James I., is a large edifice of timber and brick, supported on 27 pillars of solid oak, and has been partially restored, and much improved in its appearance. The new shire-hall was erected by act of parliament passed in the 55th of George III., authorising a sum not exceeding £30,000 to be raised, for the purpose of building courts of justice, a county hall, &c., together with a depôt for arms and military clothing, including the purchase of an appropriate site; also a sum of £3150, to purchase a house for the accommodation of the judges. The edifice has been completed from a design by Mr. Smirke; the portico in front is a fine specimen of Doric architecture, copied from the Temple of Theseus at Athens. The hall is decorated with portraits of George III., the late Duke of Norfolk, and Sir John Geers Cotterell, Bart., who represented the county in parliament for nearly thirty years. The city gaol is an ancient building. The county gaol was erected in 1798, upon Mr. Howard's plan, and occupies the site of St. Guthlac's Priory, at the foot of Aylestone Hill; the entrance, over which is the place of execution, is ornamented with Tuscan pillars. The total expense was £22,461.

The present diocese of Hereford includes nearly the whole of the county, with part of Shropshire, six parishes in Montgomeryshire, six in Radnorshire, and twenty-one in Worcestershire. By the recent arrangements, under the act of the 6th and 7th of William IV., cap. 77, it is proposed to add the deanery of Bridgnorth, and to take away the parts of the counties of Worcester and Montgomery. The ecclesiastical establishment consists of a bishop, dean, two archdeacons, four canons or prebendaries residentiary, a precentor, chancellor, treasurer, twenty-four prebendaries, nine (to be reduced to six) minor canons, one of whom is custos, four lay clerks, eight choristers, a head and under master of the grammar school, and an organist. The bishop has the patronage of the archdeaconries, the chancellorship of the diocese, and that of the church, the twenty-four prebends, and the treasurership. The dean and chapter possess the patronage of the minor canonries.

The cathedral, originally founded in expiation of the murder of Ethelbert, and dedicated to St. Mary and St. Ethelbert, was built by Melfrid, a viceroy under Egbert, about 825, principally by means of the propitiatory gifts of Offa. Having fallen into decay in less than two centuries, it was rebuilt during the prelacy of Bishop Athelstan, or Ethelstan, between 1012 and 1015. It was subsequently destroyed by fire, and lay in ruins till 1079, when Bishop Robert de Lesinga, appointed to the see by William the Conqueror, commenced a new edifice, on the model of the church of Aken, now Aix la Chapelle, which was completed by Bishop Raynelm in 1107; the tower was built by Bishop Giles de Braos in the following century. The cathedral is a noble cruciform structure, with a lofty tower rising from the intersection, formerly surmounted by a spire. The tower at the west end fell down in 1786, at which time the west front was rebuilt in a style different from the original; and the north porch built by Bishop Booth in the 16th century, and various additions made by his predecessors, have given to the exterior of the edifice a great variety of style. The Rev. Thomas Russell, one of the canons, in 1831 bequeathed funds for erecting four pinnacles at the angles of the central tower; a want of proportion, however, appears in the elevation, which, when seen from a distance, offends the eye. The nave, which is of Norman architecture, is separated from the aisles by massive circular columns and arches, above which are the triforium and clerestory. The north transept is a rich specimen of the early English, with large windows in the decorated style, having a triforium of exquisite beauty, and trefoiled circular clerestory windows. The choir, which is handsome and well proportioned, is of Norman character, intermixed with the early English style: the bishop's throne and the stalls are surmounted by ornamented canopies of tabernacle work; and a very rich altar-piece was put up in 1816, the subject of which is Christ bearing the Cross, a copy, by Leeming, from the original picture over the altar in the chapel of Magdalen College, Oxford. The east window, 40 feet high and 20 feet wide, representing the Lord's Supper, is considered the largest in this branch of the art since its revival in England; the figures are 15 feet high, and beautifully painted by Mr. Backler, from West's picture of the Lord's Supper, at an expense of £2000, towards defraying which Dr. Cope, canon residentiary, bequeathed £500. Near the choir was the shrine of St. Ethelbert, which was destroyed during the usurpation of Cromwell. The arched roof of the upper transverse aisle is supported by a single column. Eastward of the choir is the Lady chapel, in the early English style, but of a character different from that of the transept; it is now used as a library. Beneath this chapel is a crypt, called Golgotha, from the mass of human bones which it contained; it is supposed to have been originally the parochial church of St. John the Baptist. In digging round this part of the cathedral, a few years since, for the purpose of partially removing the soil that had for years been accumulating, a very fine chapel, which had long been hidden, was brought to light, and several coins and other antiquities were found, many of which are in the possession of Dr. Merewether, Dean of Hereford. Some beautiful chapels in the later English style were built by Bishop Audley and other prelates.

There are monuments in the cathedral to the memory of 34 bishops of the see, of which the most ancient is that of Bishop Walter, who was consecrated by the pope in the year 1060; likewise a splendid monument to Dr. Tyler, Bishop of Llandaff, and Dean of Hereford, and another of Sir Richard Pembridge, Knight of the Garter in the reign of Edward III. On the east side of the north transept is a monument to Bishop Cantelupe, who died in 1282; his heart was brought to Hereford, and buried in the cathedral, and he was canonized in 1310. The monument is curiously adorned with a number of effigies, but is now somewhat mutilated: it was a place of resort, from its reputed miraculous efficacy, for pilgrims from all parts of Europe. In the same transept is a plain marble tablet to the memory of John Phillips, the well-known author of The Splendid Shilling. The Consistory Court is held in the south transept of the cathedral: here are monuments in memory of Velters Cornewall, Esq., representative of the county in parliament for 46 years; of Lord James Beauclerk, who died in 1787, having been for more than 40 years bishop of the diocese; and of John Matthews, Esq., M.D., for many years chairman of the quarter-sessions, and representative of the county. In this transept are also monuments to several dignitaries of the church.

The cathedral is now undergoing a complete restoration. A few years ago, the ancient Norman piers and arches upon which the structure is built were found to be in such a state of dilapidation and decay as to threaten the fall of the great central tower, and the consequent and inevitable ruin of the whole pile. A subscription was commenced, headed with the names of the bishop, dean, and other clergy of the ecclesiastical establishment, with a view to the adequate repair of the cathedral; the contract for the tower was commenced in March 1843, and completed in February 1847. In the autumn of the latter year, by which time about £15,000 had been expended, a county meeting was held, to devise means for raising funds for the prosecution of the works, when a second subscription was opened, and an estimate of costs laid before the public. From this estimate, it appears, that a further sum of £24,000 will be required to complete the restoration of this noble structure; namely, £3168 for the choir fabric (now in hand), and £5625 for refitting and furnishing the choir, and raising three painted windows in that part of the edifice; £1650 for the Lady chapel, &c.; £750 for the Audley chapel; and other sums for the transepts, aisles, and general works.

The bishop's palace is an ancient structure southward of the cathedral, containing several elegant apartments, with a fine garden and grounds attached; it has also a handsome chapel, built by Bishop Butler, and completed in 1798. Of the chapter-house only a very small portion remains: the chapter meetings are now held in a building attached to the south aisle of the cathedral. The deanery is near the church; and four houses adjacent, in the gift of the bishop, are usually appropriated as residences for the canons. There is also a good house of stone, with a spacious garden, in St. John's street, for the chancellor of the choir; and attached to the bishop's prebend is a house in Broad-street. The college is a stone building with cloisters of the time of Edward IV., forming a quadrangle, 90 feet square, south of the cathedral, with which it communicates by other cloisters 100 feet in length: the roof is of carved oak, curiously wrought in hieroglyphics; the college contains a chapel, library, hall, common room, and chambers for the unmarried members of the society. In 1820, several attempts were made by some incendiary to destroy this building; and in 1828 an accidental fire occurred which totally consumed the south side: in the restoration and repairs consequent on this calamity, the custos and vicars expended more than £2060.

The city comprises the parishes of All Saints, containing 3091; St. Martin, 1069; St. John the Baptist, 1303; St. Nicholas, 1182; St. Owen, 1755; and St. Peter, 2521 inhabitants. The living of All Saints' is a discharged vicarage, with that of St. Martin's consolidated, valued in the king's books at £8. 10.; net income, £380; patrons, the Dean and Canons of Windsor, who, together with the Dean and Chapter of Hereford, are appropriators. The church is an ancient structure, partly in the Norman style, with a tower strengthened with buttresses, and surmounted by a lofty spire; the aisles are separated from the nave by circular columns and pointed arches, and there are a fine altar-piece, and some stalls supposed to have been appropriated to the brethren of St. Anthony. The building was lately enlarged, and 400 free sittings provided; and a very handsome organ was erected in 1826. St. Martin's church, which was situated on the south bank of the river, near the bridge, was destroyed during the parliamentary war. The present church was consecrated in October 1845; the interior is well arranged, and fitted up with open seats. The living of St. John the Baptist's is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £7. 12. 1.; net income, £150; patrons and appropriators, the Dean and Chapter of Hereford. The west nave of the cathedral was appropriated as a church for this parish till the accidental fall of its tower, in 1786. At present the north transept is used for the purpose. The living of St. Nicholas is a discharged rectory, valued in the king's books at £10, and in the patronage of the Crown: the tithes have been commuted for £185, of which £128 are payable to the rector. The church, previous to the Dissolution, had two chantries in honour of the Virgin. The living of St. Owen's is a rectory, united to the vicarage of St. Peter's, the former valued in the king's books at £4. 10. 10., and the latter at £10. 0. 2.; net income, £366; patrons, the Trustees of the late Rev. Henry Gipps; appropriators, the Dean and Chapter. The vicarial tithes of St. Owen's have been commuted for £75. The church, which was situated without the walls of the city, was destroyed during the parliamentary war. On its site, a neat school-house, which is also used as a chapel of ease, was recently erected. The church of St. Peter, founded in 1070, is in the Norman style, with a tower surmounted by a neat spire, and was repaired and partly rebuilt in 1793: the nave is separated from the south aisle by octagonal pillars, and from the north aisle by clustered columns; the chancel contains stalls which were appropriated to the brethren of St. Guthlac's Priory, and previously to the Dissolution four chantries were maintained in the church. There are places of worship for the Society of Friends, Independents, the Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion, Wesleyans, and Roman Catholics.

The College Grammar school is of ancient foundation: the earliest authentic document extant is the appointment of Ricardus de Cornwaille as master, by Bishop Gilbert, in 1385, owing to the refusal of the chancellor, with whom the appointment then rested. The school was placed under the control of the Dean and Chapter, and a head and under master were appointed, by statute of Queen Elizabeth, in the first year of her reign, which received confirmation from Charles I., when he gave to the cathedral the "Caroline Statutes," by which £4 per annum are payable to a scholar in the University of Oxford. The scholarships attached to the school comprise four founded by Dean Langford, two of which are at Brasenose College, Oxford, of the value of £40 per annum each; and five in St. John's College, Cambridge, founded by deed enrolled in the exchequer in 1682, by Sarah, Duchess of Somerset, the scholars to be chosen within forty days after each vacancy, by that college, preference being given to natives of Somersetshire, Wiltshire, and Herefordshire. Her Grace likewise bequeathed her manor of Thornhill, in Wiltshire, to Brasenose College, and that of Wootton-Rivers, in the same county, to St. John's College, by will dated May 17th, 1686, for founding scholarships; the candidates to be elected in turn from the schools of Marlborough, Hereford, and Manchester: the value of each is computed at £52 per annum, the number varying according to the revenue. Provision was made by the same lady for twelve other scholars, natives of Cheshire, Herefordshire, or Lancashire, who receive £1. 4. per week, and are elected in a similar manner; and she also left the valuable living of Wootton-Rivers, in the alternate presentation of the two colleges, to one of her scholars. The school-house erected by the Dean and Chapter, under the statutes of Edward VI. and Elizabeth, has been taken down, the cloisters restored, and a new school erected behind the master's dwelling-house. Miles Smith, Bishop of Gloucester, the translator of the Bible; Gwillim, author of a system of Heraldry; John Davis, an eminent writing-master; and his pupil, Gethin, or Gerthinge, were educated in the school. The Blue-coat charity schools were established in 1710.

The general infirmary originated in a benefaction of £500 by the late Rev. Dr. Talbot, rector of Ullingswick, in this county, which was followed by ample subscriptions from the nobility, clergy, and gentry, with various legacies. The ground whereon the building stands was the gift of the late Earl of Oxford. Dr. Harris, chancellor of the diocese, bequeathed £5000; John Morris, Esq., of Kington, £10,000 stock; and Thomas Russell, Esq., town-clerk, £500, towards the support of the institution; and two additional wings have been erected. The lunatic asylum, occupying part of the ground given for the infirmary, was erected in 1801. A charity for assisting necessitous widows and orphans of clergymen, and likewise clergymen themselves, disabled by age or infirmity, with narrow incomes, is supported by subscription. St. Ethelbert's hospital was built and endowed in the reign of Henry III., for the maintenance of ten poor persons, to be nominated and governed by a master. St. Giles' hospital was rebuilt in 1770, and contains apartments for five poor men. Williams' hospital was founded about 1601, for six men. Lazarus' or Sick Man's, hospital, originally a religious foundation for lazars, is now appropriated to the reception of six widows. Price's hospital was founded in 1636, by W. Price, merchant of London, for twelve men and a chaplain. Trinity hospital was founded by Thomas Kerry, in 1600, for three unmarried men, and twelve widows; the hospital was rebuilt by subscription in 1825, and contains sixteen dwellings. Coningsby's hospital, for old men who have served in the army, and a chaplain, was founded by Sir Thomas Coningsby, Knt., in 1614; it stands on the site of a small building and chapel that belonged to the Knights Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem, and contains twelve apartments. Symond's almshouse was founded in 1695, for four decayed housekeepers; and in addition to these, are Weaver's hospital for five persons, and Shelley's hospital for six widows. The union of Hereford includes 47 parishes or places, under the superintendence of 53 guardians.

Hereford contained several monastic establishments. A college of Grey friars was founded in the reign of Edward I., by Sir William Pembridge, Knt.: amongst the many distinguished persons buried in it was Owen Tudor, otherwise Meredith, father of Edmund, Earl of Richmond, and grandfather of Henry VII. St. Guthlac's Priory, originally a college of prebendaries, afterwards became a cell to the Benedictine abbey of St. Peter, at Gloucester; the revenue, at the Dissolution, was £121. 3. 3.: the county gaol and house of correction now occupies the site. The monastery of Blackfriars, the largest and most celebrated of all the religious houses here, was originally established under the auspices of William, brother of Bishop Cantelupe, and situated in the Portfield, in Bye-street suburb, but was afterwards removed to Widemarsh suburb, where a new priory was commenced in the reign of Edward II., and completed in that of Edward III., who, with his son the Black Prince, two archbishops, and several bishops and nobles, were present at the dedication. It became a flourishing institution, and many persons of distinction were interred in the church. The only remaining vestiges of the buildings are the south side of the prior's lodgings, some decayed offices, and a curious stone pulpit, which has been much admired. About a mile westward from the city is the White Cross, built by Dr. Lewis Charleton, afterwards Bishop of Hereford, about 1361, as a market-place for the country people, during the ravages of an infectious disorder with which the city was at that time visited. According to tradition, reservoirs of vinegar were placed on each side of the cross, for the purification of articles brought from the city, and suspected to be infectious. Hereford has given birth to several eminent persons, amongst whom are, John Breton, LL.D., bishop of the diocese in the thirteenth century, who wrote a celebrated work, called The Laws of England; and, in modern times, Garrick, the tragedian, who was born at the Angel inn, Widemarsh-street, in 1716, his father bearing at that time a lieutenant's commission in a regiment of horse quartered here. Eleanor Gwynn, favourite of Charles II., was born in an humble dwelling in Pipe-lane. Hereford gives the premier title of Viscount to the family of Devereux, created February 2nd, 1549–50.

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

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