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Doulting (St. Aldelme)

DOULTING (St. Aldelme), a parish, in the union of Shepton-Mallet, hundred of Whitestone, E. division of Somerset, 2 miles (E.) from Shepton-Mallet; containing 666 inhabitants. It is situated on the road from Frome to Wells, and comprises by measurement 3449 acres: the land abounds with freestone of excellent quality for building, which is extensively wrought, and from which some stone is said to have been raised for the erection of the cathedral of Wells. The living is a vicarage, with the livings of East and West Cranmore and Downhead annexed, valued in the king's books at £29. 12. 6.; patron and impropriator, Col. Horner. The great tithes of the parish have been commuted for £190, and the vicarial for £410; the glebe contains 72 acres, with a glebe-house. The church is a spacious cruciform structure, with an octagonal tower and spire rising from the intersection, and stands on the site of a chapel or oratory, erected by the monks of Glastonbury, in honour of St. Aldelme, who was distinguished for his learning and piety, and died Bishop of Sherborne in 709: in the churchyard is a singularly perfect cross, upon which are carved all the emblems of the Crucifixion. In digging the foundations of the parsonagehouse, numerous skeletons were discovered, indicating its having been the cemetery belonging to the ancient chapel. There is a fine spring, formerly called St. Aldelme's Well.

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