Hill (St. Michael)
HILL (St. Michael), a parish, in the union of Thornbury, Lower division of the hundred of Berkeley, W. division of the county of Gloucester, 3½ miles (N. N. E.) from Thornbury; containing 227 inhabitants. The parish is situated on the Severn, and comprises 1966a. 8p., of which about 1596 acres are meadow and pasture, 210 arable, and 130 wood. The surface of the western portion, extending to the river, which is here more than two miles wide, is a complete level, clothed with luxuriant herbage, and studded with numerous groups of stately trees; the eastern portion is finely undulated, rising into eminences of considerable elevation, two of which, immediately above the mansion of Hill Court, command extensive prospects. The soil is chiefly a loam, producing abundant crops. Hill Court is supposed to have been a monastery founded in the twelfth century; it was for many generations the residence of the family of Fast or Faust, lineal descendants of the celebrated Dr. Faust, who either introduced or greatly improved the art of printing. The living is a donative, exempt from episcopal jurisdiction, in the patronage of Sir H. Jenner Fust: the tithes have been commuted for £250; the glebe contains less than one acre, with a small cottage. The church is a neat plain structure, forming a wing to the mansion of Hill Court; it is fitted up with open seats fronted with richlycarved oak, and the ancient practice of placing males and females on the opposite sides of the church is still retained.