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Stoke-By-Clare (St. Augustine)

STOKE-BY-CLARE (St. Augustine), a parish, in the union and hundred of Risbridge, W. division of Suffolk, 12 miles (N. W. by N.) from Halstead; containing 868 inhabitants. Richard de Clare, Earl of Hereford, in 1124 removed the monks of Bec, whom his father had placed in the castle of Clare, to this village, first into the parochial church of St. Augustine, and afterwards to a church built for them, and dedicated to St. John the Baptist. In 1415, Edmund Mortimer, Earl of March, then patron, procured power to change the society into a college of secular priests, for a dean, six prebendaries, eight vicars, and other officers; and this college was valued in the 26th of Henry VIII. at £324. 4. 1. per annum: Matthew Parker, Archbishop of Canterbury, was the last dean. A modern house which now stands upon the site was the residence of the well-known miser, John Elwes. The parish comprises 2361 acres, of which 48 are common or waste land: the navigable river Stour passes on the south. The living is a perpetual curacy, with a net income of £130; it is in the patronage of Lady Rush, and the tithes have been commuted for £740. 18. Sir Gervaise Elwes, Bart., in 1678 bequeathed a rent-charge of £10 for teaching children; and there is a fund for apprenticing children amounting to £33 per annum, the rent of 12 acres of land. An almshouse, consisting of three cottages occupied by six widows, was founded by Richard Brown in 1526.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858.

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