A Topographical Dictionary of England. Originally published by S Lewis, London, 1848.
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Mayland (St. Barnabas)
MAYLAND (St. Barnabas), a parish, in the union of Maldon, hundred of Dengie, S. division of Essex, 8½ miles (S. E.) from Maldon; containing 200 inhabitants, and comprising 2030a. 2r. 22p. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £13. 6. 8.; patrons and impropriators, the Governors of St. Bartholomew's Hospital, London: the great tithes have been commuted for £410, and the vicarial for £142. Dr. John Gauden, successively Bishop of Exeter and of Worcester, and supposed by some to have been the author of Eikon Basilike, was born here in 1605.
MEABURN, KING'S, a township, in the parish of Morland, West ward and union, county of Westmorland, 1½ mile (E.) from the village of Morland; containing 200 inhabitants. A school, built in the year 1834, is endowed with the interest of £200.
MEABURN MAULDS, a township, in the parish of Crosby-Ravensworth, West ward and union, county of Westmorland, 4½ miles (E. N. E.) from Shap; containing 310 inhabitants. It is situated in a fertile valley, watered by the Lyvennet rivulet, and abounding with luxuriant pasturage. The village is large, and a fair for sheep and cattle is held in it on the Monday before Easter. £14. 14. 6., the amount of various bequests, are distributed among the poor annually.
Mealrigg, with Langrigg.—See Langrigg.
MEANWOOD, a hamlet, in the parish of Leeds, wapentake of Skyrack, W. riding of York, 4 miles (N. by W.) from Leeds. It is beautifully situated on the east side of a thickly-wooded dell, embracing a fine prospect of the town of Leeds and the adjacent country; the scenery is richly diversified. Meanwood House, the seat of the Beckett family, is a handsome mansion, erected in 1841, and pleasantly seated on an eminence commanding extensive views. A living has been founded by Mrs. Mary Beckett and Miss Elizabeth Beckett, who possess the patronage.
Meare (St. Mary)
MEARE (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Wells, hundred of Glaston-Twelve-Hides, E. division of Somerset, 3¼ miles (N. W. by W.) from Glastonbury; containing, with the chapelry of Godney, 1522 inhabitants. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £13. 2. 8.; net income, £228; patrons, B. Wake and W. Purlewent, Esqrs.; impropriators, the feoffees of a charity at Shepton-Mallett. The tithes were commuted for land in 1778. The church is in the early English style of architecture, with an embattled tower. At Godney is a separate incumbency. In the parish are the remains of encampments, of Danish origin, with a double ditch.
MEARLEY, a township, in the parochial chapelry, parliamentary borough, and poor-law union of Clitheroe, parish of Whalley, Higher division of the hundred of Blackburn, N. division of Lancashire, 2 miles (S. E. by E.) from Clitheroe; containing 53 inhabitants. The chief part of the township was granted by Jordan le Rous to Stephen, afterwards called de Merley, whose daughter married Adam de Nowell, and carried the Hall and manor into that family, 38th of Edward III. Lawrence Nowell exchanged the chase and manor of Merley with Sir Richard Greenacres, for lands elsewhere, and an heiress of the last-named brought the estate to the Radcliffes, of Todmorden. An only daughter of Joshua Radcliffe married Roger Mainwaring, who wasted the property, and sold it to the Harrison family, from whom Mearley passed by purchase to Piers Starkie, Esq., of Huntroyd. The hamlet and manor of Little Mearley, in the township, still remain in the descendants of William Nowell, the first grantee under John de Lacy, who died in the year 1240. The township lies under Pendle Hill.
Measham (St. Lawrence)
MEASHAM (St. Lawrence), a parish, in the union of Ashby-de-la-Zouch, hundred of Repton and Gresley, S. division of the county of Derby, 9 miles (N. by E.) from Atherstone; containing, with part of the hamlets of Donisthorpe and Oakthorpe, 1615 inhabitants. This parish is bounded on the south and east by the small river Mease, from which it derives its name, and comprises by measurement 1818 acres; coal is found, though no mines are in operation, and there are quarries of good stone, but not wrought at present. The manufacture of tape is carried on, affording employment to about 200 persons. The Ashby canal, and the road from Ashby to Tamworth, pass through the village. A market-house was built some years ago, but it was afterwards converted into a dwelling-house, and the market was discontinued: fairs are held on the 1st of May and the first Monday in November. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £97; patron and impropriator, the Marquess of Hastings: there is a glebe of 15 acres, with a house. The church is an elegant structure in the early English style, with later insertions, and has a square tower; the interior was completely restored in 1842, at a cost of £1400. There are places of worship for Baptists and Wesleyans. National and infant schools are supported by a small endowment and by subscription: Queen Adelaide visited them in 1839.
Meavy (St. Peter)
MEAVY (St. Peter), a parish, in the union of Tavistock, hundred of Roborough, Midland-Roborough and S. divisions of Devon, 6¼ miles (S. E.) from Tavistock; containing 361 inhabitants. This place was the residence of Sir Francis Drake, of whose ancient mansion there are still some remains. The parish comprises 3351a. 3r. 35p., of which about 2400 acres are profitable land, and the remainder, with the exception of 360 acres of coppice wood, open and unproductive common. The surface is undulated, and the lower grounds are watered by the river Mew, which winds through a valley of great beauty, and on the banks of which the village is situated. The Plymouth and Dartmoor railway passes through the parish. The living is a discharged rectory, valued in the king's books at £13. 5., and in the patronage of the Crown: the tithes have been commuted for £220; the glebe comprises 23 acres. Near the church is a hollow oak of very large dimensions, and adjoining it are the remains of a stone cross.
Medbourne (St. Giles)
MEDBOURNE (St. Giles), a parish, in the union of Uppingham, hundred of Gartree, S. division of the county of Leicester, 5 miles (W. by N.) from Rockingham; containing, with the chapelry of Holt, 574 inhabitants. An act for the inclosure of land was passed in 1842. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £35. 11. 0½.; net income, £606; patrons, the Master and Fellows of St. John's College, Cambridge. There is a chapel of ease at Holt. The Wesleyans have a place of worship. A school is endowed with £32 per annum; and the poor have bequests producing £38. 11. per annum. In a field north-westward from the village are the remains of intrenchments, with foundations of buildings, covering an area about half a mile square: in 1721, a tessellated pavement was discovered; and other Roman remains have been dug up at different times.
Medlar, with Wesham
MEDLAR, with Wesham, a township, in the parish of Kirkham, union of the Fylde, hundred of Amounderness, N. division of Lancashire, 2¾ miles (N. by W.) from Kirkham; containing 209 inhabitants. This place is stated to have come to the Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem by the gift of Cicely, daughter of Roger de Gernet; the Lancasters subsequently gave it to the abbey of Cockersand. On the dissolution of monasteries, the land seems to have been granted or sold to the family of Westby; in the reign of Philip and Mary, William Westbye held "Medlarghe," "Wessham," and other property in this quarter, and his descendants long continued to reside at Mowbrick Hall, now a farmhouse. Bradkirk, in the township, was possessed in the reign of Edward III., as a manor, by a family of the same name, and was their residence for centuries: the estate became latterly the property of Hugh Hornby, Esq., of Ribby Hall, by purchase from Mr. Kearsley. The township comprises 1971a. 1r. 23p. of land. The tithes have been commuted for £61 payable to the Dean and Chapter of Christ-Church, Oxford, £32 to the impropriators, and £29 to the vicar.
Medmenham (St. Peter)
MEDMENHAM (St. Peter), a parish, in the union of Henley, hundred of Desborough, county of Buckingham, 3 miles (S. W. by W.) from Marlow; containing 385 inhabitants. The living is a discharged vicarage, endowed with a portion of the rectorial tithes, valued in the king's books at £5. 7. 1., and in the patronage of C. R. Scott Murray, Esq.: the incumbent's tithes have been commuted for £200, and the glebe comprises 3 acres. An abbey for Cistercian monks was founded here by Hugh de Bolebec, as a cell to the monastery at Woburn, and its revenue was valued at £20. 6. 2.; a very small portion of the conventual building remains, and the site is partly occupied by a modern erection, in imitation of ruins, almost overgrown with ivy. Above the village are vestiges of a large camp, nearly square, with a single vallum and ditch, the area comprising about seven acres; there is also an ancient circular intrenchment in the parish, called Danesfield.
MEDOMSLEY, a chapelry, in the parish and union of Lanchester, W. division of Chester ward, N. division of the county of Durham, 2¼ miles (N. E.) from Shotley-Bridge, and 11 (S. W. by W.) from Gateshead; containing about 3000 inhabitants, of whom 796 are in the township of Medomsley. It includes the townships of Benfieldside, and Conside with Knitsley, and is situated on the northern limit of the county, and divided for about six miles from Northumberland and the parishes of Winlaton and Ryton by the river Derwent. The township, which is crossed in its western part by the Roman Watling-street, from the Lanchester to the Ebchester station, contains by computation 5890 acres, and consists of a number of small farms, partly arable and partly grass land, interspersed with about 500 acres of natural oak copse and other wood. In general the soil is a strong clay, suited to the culture of wheat, but in some parts it is of a lighter quality; the surface rises rapidly both from the east and west, until, at the village, it attains a height of about 900 feet above the level of the sea. The seam of coal called the "Hutton Seams," which is here upwards of seven feet thick, is worked in two collieries in Medomsley. There are also quarries of good freestone used for building purposes, and various strata of ironstone, which latter are extensively wrought by the Derwent Iron Company, and the produce conveyed by railway to their furnaces at Conside: the quality of the iron is said to be superior to that of any hitherto produced in the north of England. At Derwent Cote, in the township, is a forge for iron and steel. The village is pleasantly situated on an eminence skirted by rich meads, and commanding a beautiful view of the vale of Derwent, and the distant hills beyond the Tyne.
The living is a perpetual curacy in the patronage of the Bishop, with a net income of about £250, arising out of glebe lands and certain augmentations from the surplus revenues of the see of Durham: the impropriate tithes have been commuted for £183. 19. The chapel, dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene, and built in 1280, stands at the west end of the village, and is in the early English style, consisting of a nave and chancel of equal width, separated by an arch springing from corbels on either side. The roof is of lead, resting on massive oak beams. The windows are lancet-shaped, and of very small dimensions; the east window, which is handsome, is of three lights: there is a piscina in the south wall under a trefoil arch with good mouldings. A porch existed about eighty years since on the south side, but it was taken down, and a vestry built against the south door. The chapel is said to have suffered much from the inroads of the Scots. In the burial-ground are three stone coffins, two having the figure of a cross with a sword suspended, and the other bearing a longitudinal inscription, now illegible. There are places of worship for Baptists, Primitive Methodists, Wesleyans, and the Society of Friends; and numerous schools. To the west of the village, on a farm called Bunker's Hill, may be traced three distinct lines of military defence, supposed to have been thrown up by the Scottish army when retreating from the battle of Nevill's Cross. The elegant and accomplished Henry Swinburne, author of Travels in Spain (1779), was owner of the manor of Hamsterley, in the township; and Hamsterley Hall, a handsome mansion in a sheltered valley on the Pont burn, bears strong proofs of his refined taste, in the beautiful arrangement of its shrubberies and walks, and the selection of fine trees that adorn them.
Medsted (St. Andrew)
MEDSTED (St. Andrew), a parish, in the union of Alton, hundred of Fawley, Alton and N. divisions of the county of Southampton, 4½ miles (W. S. W.) from Alton; containing 450 inhabitants. It comprises by computation 2000 acres; the surface is elevated, and the surrounding scenery pleasingly diversified. The living is a rectory, annexed, with that of New Alresford, to the rectory of Old Alresford.
Meer, county of Lincoln.—See Waddington.
MEER, a hamlet, in the parish of Forton, union of Newport, W. division of the hundred of Cuttlestone, S. division of the county of Stafford, 1¼ mile (N. E.) from Newport. Meer-town is a small village, containing several neat houses, situated upon an eminence on the Shropshire border; it takes its name from Aqualate Meer, a sheet of water of about 200 acres, bounding on the north Aqualate Hall and Park, the seat of Sir T. F. F. Boughey, Bart. The roads from Newport to Eccleshall and to Stafford are in the immediate vicinity.
MEERBECK, a hamlet, in the township and union of Settle, parish of Giggleswick, W. division of the wapentake of Staincliffe and Ewcross, W. riding of York, 2 miles (S.) from Settle. This place is situated upon an acclivity on the road from Skipton to Settle, commanding extensive views of Ribblesdale, including the celebrated height of Pendle Hill; the scenery is enriched with wood, and is beautifully diversified. Here is the seat of John Preston, Esq., whose family have been settled in this part of the West riding for more than four centuries.
MEERBROOK, a chapelry, in the township of Leek-Frith, parish and union of Leek, N. division of the hundred of Totmonslow and of the county of Stafford, 3 miles (N.) from Leek; containing 631 inhabitants. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £105; patron, the Vicar of Leek. The chapel, dedicated to St. Matthew, is a small edifice with a square tower. Some children are educated for £12. 5. per annum, the proceeds of bequests by John Stoddard and Roger Morris, the former in 1673. In the neighbourhood are the Leek rocks, stupendous overhanging masses, two miles in length, with scattered fragments at their bases and in other parts of the valley.
Meesden (St. Mary)
MEESDEN (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Buntingford, hundred of Edwinstree, county of Hertford, 4½ miles (S. E. by E.) from Barkway; containing 181 inhabitants. It comprises 1008 acres, of which 20 are common or waste land. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £12. 13. 4.; patron and incumbent, the Rev. A. Gaussen: the tithes have been commuted for £178, and the glebe comprises 108 acres. A school is supported by the rector.
Meeth (St. John the Baptist)
MEETH (St. John the Baptist), a parish, in the union of Oakhampton, hundred of Shebbear, Black Torrington and Shebbear, and N. divisions of Devon, 3 miles (N. by E.) from Hatherleigh; containing 314 inhabitants. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at £9. 7. 6., and in the gift of the Rev. F. D. Lempriere: the tithes have been commuted for £221, and the glebe comprises 25 acres. The church contains a marble monument to Dr. Lempriere, author of the Classical Dictionary and other works, who died in 1824.
Melay, with Hayton.—See Hayton.
MELBECKS, a township, in the parish of Grinton, union of Richmond, wapentake of Gilling-West, N. riding of York, 14 miles (W. by S.) from Richmond; containing 1633 inhabitants. The township is situated on the north side of Swaledale, along which extend numerous hamlets, and comprises by computation 10,106 acres, whereof 8643 are wild and uncultivated moors: extensive and productive lead-mines are in operation. A church dedicated to the Trinity, to which a district has been assigned, was erected in 1843, by subscription, aided by a grant of £300 from the Ripon Diocesan Society; it is a light and handsome edifice in the later English style. The living has been endowed with £150 per annum by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners, and is in the patronage of the Vicar of Grinton; a parsonagehouse was built in 1843. There are places of worship for Presbyterians and Wesleyans.