A Topographical Dictionary of England. Originally published by S Lewis, London, 1848.
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Dunsfold (St. Mary)
DUNSFOLD (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Hambledon, First division of the hundred of Blackheath, W. division of Surrey, 6 miles (S. S. E.) from Godalming; containing 669 inhabitants. This parish, anciently Duncefold, is situated on the road through Guildford to London. A species of breccia is found in considerable quantities at some depth below the surface, analogous in its formation to Sussex marble, and abounding with the same fossils, blended with a minute species of bivalve supposed to belong to the genus lipris of Lamarck. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at 12. 0. 7., and in the patronage of the Chancellor; net income, 471. The church has portions in the decorated style: the east window is remarkably handsome, having been embellished at the expense of the Hon. John Evelyn Boscawen, prebendary of Canterbury; in the chancel is a tablet recording the death of the Rev. J. Richardson, at the advanced age of 94 years. It is said that Dr. Young composed his Night Thoughts in an embowered and retired walk in the gardens of the rectory-house.
Dunsford (St. Mary)
DUNSFORD (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of St. Thomas, hundred of Wonford, Crockernwell and S. divisions of Devon, 7 miles (W. by S.) from Exeter; containing 925 inhabitants. In the parliamentary war, the manor-house of Great Fulford, here, erected in the time of Elizabeth, was garrisoned for the king by Colonel Sir Francis Fulford, whose family have resided at this place since the Conquest; but the garrison surrendered to Fairfax, in 1645. The parish comprises 5878a. 2r. 5p., of which 4900 acres are arable and pasture, 300 coppice and woodland, and 600 covered with furze. A fair is held on the Monday after September 8th. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at 19. 10., and in the gift of Baldwin Fulford, Esq., who, with others, is impropriator: the great tithes have been commuted for 245, and the vicarial for 365; the glebe comprises 7 acres, with a house. The church has a plain Norman doorway. A house of industry was built in 1828, at an expense of 700.
DUNSFORTH, LOWER, a chapelry, in the parish of Aldborough, union of Great Ouseburn (under Gilbert's act), Upper division of the wapentake of Claro, W. riding of York, 2 miles (S. E.) from Boroughbridge; containing 116 inhabitants. It comprises by computation 960 acres of land, partly the property of the Dean and Chapter of York: the village is seated on the south bank of the river Ure, and east of the road from Boroughbridge to York. The living is a perpetual curacy, with a net income of 51, and in the patronage of the Vicar of Aldborough; impropriators of the chapelry, the Dean and Chapter. The chapel is dedicated to St. Mary.
Dunsforth, Upper, with Branton-Green
DUNSFORTH, UPPER, with Branton-Green, a township, in the parish of Aldborough, union of Great Ouseburn (under Gilbert's act), Upper division of the wapentake of Claro, W. riding of York, 3 miles (S. E. by E.) from Aldborough; containing 163 inhabitants. The township comprises about 900 acres, including the hamlet of Branton-Green, on the south side of the vale of the Ure. A portion of land was assigned in lieu of tithes under an inclosure act in 1770. A tumulus, called the Devil's Cross, was levelled about half a century since.
Dunsley, with Newholm
DUNSLEY, with Newholm, a township, in the parish and union of Whitby, liberty of Whitby-Strand, N. riding of York, 3 miles (W.) from Whitby; containing 383 inhabitants. The township is partly the property of the Marquess of Normanby, whose fine seat, Mulgrave Castle, is in the vicinity. On the north of the village is Dunsley bay, styled by Ptolemy Dunus Sinus, which was a landing-place of the Romans, as well as of the Danes, who arrived here in 867 with a numerous army, and planted their standard on Raven Hill. Northward from Dunsley is the hamlet of East Row. A Roman road, now called Wade's Causeway, runs from this place for many miles over the moors to York; it is paved with flints, and has been traced twelve feet wide and three high, with a defaced milliary on it.See Newholm.
Dunstable (St. Peter and St. Paul)
DUNSTABLE (St. Peter and St. Paul), a markettown and parish, in the union of Luton, hundred of Manshead, county of Bedford, 18 miles (S. by W.) from Bedford, and 32 (N. W. by N.) from London; containing 2582 inhabitants. The origin of this town may be traced to the ancient Britons, who are supposed to have had a settlement here, which they named Maes Gwyn, or "White Field," as descriptive of the chalky soil of the vicinity: it is thought to have been the Magiovinium of Antoninus, a term of similar import. That it was a place of great importance is evident from its situation at the very point of contact between the Watling and Ikeneld streets, as also from immense adjacent ramparts of earth which mark the ancient circular fortifications. Its modern appellation was bestowed after the Danes had desolated the town, and, according to Hearne and Bishop Gibson, is derived from Dunum or Dun, a hill, and Staple, a commercial mart; by others it is considered to have been taken from Dun, the name of a notorious robber in the time of Henry I., who with his associates became so much the object of terror, that the destruction of the neighbouring forest was resorted to as the only effectual means of their dispersion. This object being accomplished, Henry erected a royal residence at Kingsbury, rebuilt the town of Dunstable, and, having invited settlers, constituted it a borough, endowing it with a grant of lands at a trifling nominal rent, and investing the inhabitants with various privileges, among which was an exemption from the jurisdiction of justices itinerant at any place throughout the realm, except within their own town and liberty. During this reign, markets were held weekly on Sunday and Wednesday, and a fair on St. Peter's day.
The priory of Black canons, near the royal palace, was founded by Henry, under the authority of Pope Eugenius III., was extensively endowed, and enjoyed many privileges; the priors had a gaol, possessed the power of life and death, and usually sat as judges at Dunstable, with the king's justices itinerant. These circumstances gave occasion to the exercise of great tyranny, and the townsmen became entirely subject to the monks; hence arose dissatisfaction and tumults, so that, in the reign of Richard II., the inhabitants revolted against the prior, and extorted a charter of liberties from him, which he soon afterwards revoked. In 1204, King John conferred his palace on the prior, on condition that royal visiters should be freely entitled to the hospitality of the priory, in which many of the English sovereigns were subsequently entertained. In 1290, the corpse of Queen Eleanor, consort of Edward I., rested at the marketplace, on being conveyed through the town; and in commemoration of the event a handsome cross was erected, which was demolished in the reign of Charles I. as a relic of popery. In the chapel of Our Lady, at the priory, the sentence of divorce between Henry VIII. and Catharine of Arragon was pronounced by Archbishop Cranmer; and Gervase Markham, who was the last prior, having assisted to effect that measure, was in consequence treated with comparative liberality.
The town is pleasantly situated near the Chiltern hills, and consists mainly of four streets, which intersect each other at right angles, and correspond exactly with the four cardinal points. The inhabitants formerly procured water from public reservoirs, there being one in each street; but a supply is now obtained from wells, which, from the chalky nature of the substratum, are sunk to a great depth. The manufacture of articles in straw, both useful and ornamental, is extensively carried on, employing upwards of 500 females, in general farmers' daughters, who are required to pay two guineas each, and to give three months of their time at entering, in order to learn the business; there are also some large manufactories for whitening, from which most of the manufacturing towns are supplied. The town was once distinguished for the number of its inns and posting establishments, about 200 horses, with the requisite number of post-boys, being kept for the use of travellers; the traffic, however, was almost entirely annihilated by the formation of the Birmingham railway. A branch railway, seven miles long, for which an act was passed in 1845, has been opened to Dunstable from the Birmingham line near Leighton-Buzzard; this may in some measure compensate for the lost traffic. The place is celebrated for its fine larks, which are prepared for conveyance in tin cases to all parts of the kingdom, and with which travellers are supplied from October till February. The market is on Wednesday and Saturday, for straw plat, commencing at eight o'clock in the morning; and fairs are held on Ash-Wednesday, May 22nd, Aug. 12th, and Nov. 12th, the last being the largest fair for sheep in the county. Dunstable was anciently under the government of a mayor, but it has now only the ordinary parochial authorities. The manor belongs to the crown; and the Duke of Bedford, as lessee, holds courts leet and baron, but at no stated periods.
The parish comprises 410 acres, of which 176 are in tillage, and 214 pasture and meadow; the soil is light, resting on chalk. The living is a rectory not in charge, in the patronage of the Crown: the tithes have been commuted for 115, and the glebe contains about 1 acre, with a good house, built by the rector, aided by contributions from the inhabitants and a grant of 600 from Queen Anne's Bounty. The church, which, with some rooms having vaulted and groined stone roofs, forms the only remains of the ancient priory, was originally a magnificent and extensive cruciform structure, with a tower rising from the intersection: Henry VIII. having abandoned his design of making it a cathedral, a considerable part of the edifice was demolished. The remains consist of the west front, nave, and two aisles; each of the latter extends from the western doors to the entrance to what was once the choir, being about 120 feet long: at the north-west angle is a tower embellished with a double row of niches, which formerly contained statues. The architecture combines some portions in the Norman, with others in the early and later English styles; the windows are of comparatively modern dates. Over the communion-table is a painting of the Lord's Supper, by Sir James Thornhill; and among the monuments are several to the Chew family, who were great benefactors to the town. There are places of worship for Baptists and Wesleyans. A charity school, founded by the direction of Mr. William Chew, was built in 1727, and is endowed with an income of more than 300. Adjoining are six almshouses, founded and endowed by Mrs. Cart, for the residence and maintenance of widows; and in West-street are six others, endowed by Mrs. Ashton for a similar purpose. Nearly opposite the church are six houses founded by Mrs. Blandina Marsh, in 1713, and designated "The Maidens' Lodge," for six unmarried gentlewomen, whose income has been increased by a benefaction from another lady, to 120. In 1770, a great quantity of coins of Antoninus and Constantine, with ornaments of bridles and armour, were dug up on an adjacent down; and several antiquities were lately discovered in a field, supposed to belong to the church of the Grey friars, comprising coins, rings, swords, &c. The first dramatic representations in England, called "Mysteries," are said to have taken place here under the direction of a priest, or friar. Elkanah Settle, a dramatist and political writer of notoriety in the reign of Charles II., was a native of Dunstable.
DUNSTALL, a township, in the parish of Tatenhill, union of Burton-upon-Trent, N. division of the hundred of Offlow and of the county of Stafford, 4 miles (W. S. W.) from Burton; containing 180 inhabitants. This place lies on the eastern verge of Needwood Forest, and the manor was anciently a member of the honour of Tutbury. The township comprises 1716a. 2r. 24p., in about equal portions of arable and pasture: the land is elevated; the soil, though it varies, is generally good, and the scenery is pleasing. The river Trent skirts the township; and the Lichfield and Burton road, the Grand Trunk canal, and Birmingham and Derby railway, pass through it. Dunstall Lodge, enlarged and improved by the present proprietor, Charles Arkwright, Esq., is surrounded with 1200 acres of land. A large portion of Highlands Park, crown property, is in the township. The tithes have been commuted for 314.
DUNSTALL, a liberty, in the parish and union of Tamworth, S. division of the hundred of Offlow and of the county of Stafford, 1 mile (W.) from Tamworth; containing 6 inhabitants. It lies about a mile to the north of Drayton-Manor, the seat of Sir Robert Peel, Bart., and is one of several hamlets and villages that encompass the park. The Fazeley canal passes in the vicinity of Dunstall Farm.
DUNSTALL-GREEN, a hamlet, in the parish of Dalham, union of Newmarket, hundred of Risbridge, W. division of the county of Suffolk; containing 204 inhabitants.
DUNSTAN, ST., a parish, in the union of Blean, hundred of Westgate, lathe of St. Augustine, E. division of Kent, of a mile (N. W.) from Canterbury; containing 1209 inhabitants, and comprising 385 acres. A part of the parish is within the municipal borough of Canterbury. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at 5, and in the patronage of the Archbishop, with a net income of 120; the impropriation belongs to G. Gipps, Esq., and Eastbridge Hospital. The church, which belonged to the convent of St. Gregory in Canterbury, stands on gently rising ground; it has recently been much improved, and among its chief architectural features may be mentioned the semicircular tower adjoining the western square tower. In the family vault of the Ropers still lies the head of Sir Thomas More, which was placed here by his beloved daughter, and was discovered during some repairs in 1835. There are a national central, and an infants' school, with an endowment of 6000 in the three per cent. consols., bequeathed by Mr. Tillard.
Dunster (St. George)
DUNSTER (St. George), a market-town and parish, in the union of Williton, hundred of Carhampton, W. division of Somerset, 38 miles (W. N. W.) from Somerton, and 158 (W. by S.) from London; containing 1078 inhabitants, and comprising the hamlets of Alcombe, Aville, Bondington, Frackford, Kitswall with Cuffs, and Staunton. The town, which is called Torre in Domesday book, owes its origin to a baronial castle built here by William de Mohun, a Norman baron, on whom the Conqueror had bestowed large estates in this part of the kingdom. He also founded a priory of Benedictine monks, as a cell to the abbey at Bath; the revenue, at the Dissolution, was 37. 4. 9. The castle, which was held by the family of Mohun till the reign of Edward III., was the scene of hostilities in the civil wars of the reigns of Stephen and John, and in the contests between the houses of York and Lancaster; the Marquess of Hertford, also, took possession of it for Charles I. during the war with the parliament. It has been the residence of the family of Luttrell since the time of Edward III.: the present structure, which is comparatively of recent erection, stands in a commanding situation at the southern extremity of the main street, embracing fine views of the Bristol Channel, and the Welsh and Gloucestershire hills. The town is on a gentle eminence about a mile to the south of the Channel, and the surrounding country is beautifully diversified with hill and dale, and embellished by a rapid stream, formed by springs rising at Dunkery Hill, and which passes on the south and east sides of the town, and, after turning several mills, runs under a stone bridge of three arches, and falls into the sea. The place is small, and of little importance at present, having materially suffered from the loss of its wool-trade, which afforded employment to a considerable part of the population of this and the adjacent parishes. There are two streets, one of which has been much improved by the removal of some unsightly old shambles that stood in the centre. An ancient market-house is still standing. The market is on Friday; and a fair is held on WhitMonday. The town sent members to a parliament in the 34th of Edward III., and, till the Reform act was passed, enjoyed the elective franchise in conjunction with Minehead.
The parish comprises 2883 acres, whereof 1186 are common or waste: there are several quarries of stone, which is raised for building and for burning into lime. The living, formerly a vicarage, is now a perpetual curacy, valued in the king's books at 4. 13. 4.; net income, 130; patron and impropriator, John Fownes Luttrell, Esq. The church, erected by Henry VII., in acknowledgment of the assistance afforded him by the men of Dunster, in the battle of Bosworth-Field, is a handsome and spacious structure in the later English style, with a central embattled tower crowned by pinnacles. To the east is a kind of chapel, formerly the church of the priory. This part of the building was used, not only by the monks, but by the incumbent of the parish, for the performance of divine service, until the year 1499, when a dispute arising between the monks and the parishioners, the matter was referred to arbitrators, who decided that the latter should have a choir separate from that of the convent: it contains many fine monuments to the families of Mohun and Luttrell, which, as well as the chapel itself, are hastening to decay. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans; also a school endowed with 30 per annum.
Dunstew (St. Mary)
DUNSTEW (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Woodstock, hundred of Wootton, county of Oxford, 8 miles (N.) from Woodstock; containing 449 inhabitants. It comprises 1680 acres, of which nearly 1200 are arable, and the remainder meadow and pasture. Stone of good quality for building is found; and about seventy persons are employed in making gloves for the Woodstock market. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at 8. 2. 8.; net income, 237; patron and impropriator, Sir George Dashwood, Bart. The tithes were commuted for land and a money payment in 1793.
Dunston (St. Peter)
DUNSTON (St. Peter), a parish, in the Second division of the wapentake of Langoe, parts of Kesteven, union and county of Lincoln, 8 miles (S. E.) from Lincoln; containing 518 inhabitants. This parish is situated in the heart of a district which was anciently barren and unfrequented; and in 1751 Dunston pillar, a pyramidal shaft 92 feet high, crowned with a gallery and a lantern, was erected by F. Dashwood, Esq., as a landmark to guide the traveller over the then surrounding waste. There is a quarry of good buildingstone. The living is a vicarage, valued in the king's books at 7. 0. 10.; net income, 151; patron, the Bishop of Lincoln. The church is a neat edifice, in the later English style. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans. The late Dr. Willis, who had an asylum here, left 100 to the poor.
Dunston (St. Remigius)
DUNSTON (St. Remigius), a parish, in the union of Henstead, hundred of Humbleyard, E. division of Norfolk, 4 miles (S.) from Norwich; containing 107 inhabitants, and comprising 624a. 2r. 19p. The living is a donative; net income, 30; patron and impropriator, K. R. Long, Esq. The church, which is partly in the early and partly in the decorated style, is beautifully situated in the grounds belonging to the Hall, the mansion of Mr. Long.
DUNSTON, a township, in the parish of Embleton, union of Alnwick, S. division of Bambrough ward, N. division of Northumberland, 6 miles (N. E.) from Alnwick; containing 218 inhabitants. It comprises between 2000 and 3000 acres, of which a portion is old grass-land; the soil is generally well adapted for the cultivation of wheat, and a lighter description grows turnips to great perfection. Limestone abounds, and the fine cliffs which intersect the township furnish an inexhaustible supply of the best material for roads, walls, &c. On a bold basaltic rock, jutting out into the sea, are the ruins of an extensive castle, formerly constituting a member of the duchy of Lancaster, but now belonging to the Earl of Tankerville.
DUNSTON, a chapelry, in the parish and union of Penkridge, E. division of the hundred of Cuttlestone, S. division of the county of Stafford, 2 miles (N. by E.) from Penkridge; containing 250 inhabitants. It is intersected by the Liverpool and Birmingham railway, and comprises by admeasurement 1357 acres, three-fourths of which are arable. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, 67; patron and impropriator, Lord Hatherton, whose tithes have been commuted for 253; there is a glebe of 1 acre. The chapel, dedicated to St. Leonard, is supposed to have been built about a century ago.
Dunterton (All Saints)
DUNTERTON (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Tavistock, hundred of Lifton, Lifton and S. divisions of Devon, 5 miles (S. E. by S.) from Launceston; containing 212 inhabitants. The parish is situated on the road to Tavistock, and bounded on the south and west by the river Tamar; and comprises 1314a. 31p.: freestone of an inferior colour abounds, and green felspar is also found. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at 8. 7. 1.; patron and incumbent, the Rev. N. T. Royse. The church is a small edifice, with a handsome tower. At a place called Chapel Field formerly stood a chantry chapel, endowed with seven acres of woodland and four acres of meadow.
DUNTHORPE, a hamlet, in the parish of Heythorpe, union of Chipping-Norton, hundred of Wootton, county of Oxford, 3 miles (E. N. E.) from Chipping-Norton; containing 106 inhabitants.
DUNTISH, a tything, in the parish and hundred of Buckland-Newton, Cerne division of Dorset, 11 miles (N. by W.) from Dorchester; containing 122 inhabitants. There is a circular camp of ten acres, in which arms and Roman coins have been discovered.
Dunton (St. Mary)
DUNTON (St. Mary), a parish, in the union and hundred of Biggleswade, county of Bedford, 3 miles (E. by S.) from Biggleswade; containing, with the hamlets of Millo and Newtown, 434 inhabitants. It comprises by admeasurement 2550 acres, of which 2195 are arable, 330 pasture, and 25 woodland; the soil is in general clayey. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at 10, and in the gift of Earl Spencer: the tithes were commuted for land and a corn-rent in 1797.
Dunton (St. Martin)
DUNTON (St. Martin), a parish, in the union of Winslow, hundred of Cottesloe, county of Buckingham, 4 miles (S. E. by E.) from Winslow; containing 107 inhabitants. It comprises 1155a. 2r. 20p., the whole of which is grass-land, with the exception of about 70 acres arable. The river Thame has its source in the garden of the rectory-house. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at 9. 9. 7.; net income, 205; patron, Lord Carrington. This place was for some time the residence of Dr. Blomfield, the present Bishop of London.
Dunton, with Doughton (St. Mary)
DUNTON, with Doughton (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Walsingham, hundred of Gallow, W. division of Norfolk, 3 miles (W. by N.) from Fakenham; containing 147 inhabitants. It is situated on the northern acclivities of the vale of the Wensum, and comprises 1721a. 1r. 24p., of which 1450 acres are arable, and 170 pasture. The manor was given by Henry VII. to Ralph de Hauville, to be held by service of keeping the king's falcons; it passed in the reign of Elizabeth to Lord Chief Justice Coke. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at 5. 6. 8.; patron and impropriator, the Earl of Leicester; the great tithes have been commuted for 350, and the vicarial for 177. The chancel of the church contains a fine brass representing Clere Talbot and his two wives; also a long inscription to Matthew Lancaster, "descended from John Lancaster, the first of that race in England, and first founder of Lancaster."
Dunton-Basset (All Saints)
DUNTON-BASSET (All Saints), a parish, in the union of Lutterworth, hundred of Guthlaxton, S. division of the county of Leicester, 3 miles (N.) from Lutterworth; containing 553 inhabitants. The parish is situated on the road from Lutterworth to Leicester, and comprises by computation 1300 acres: the stocking manufacture affords employment to nearly 200 persons. The Broughton-Astley station on the Midland railway, is distant about a mile and a quarter only. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at 6. 0. 10.; net income, 73; patron, the Rev. John Longhurst. The tithes were commuted for land and a money payment in 1796. The church is an ancient structure in the early English style, with a square embattled tower, and contains in some of the windows remains of stained glass: from its elevated situation on some of the highest land in the county, it was chosen as a post for telegraphic communication during the threatened invasion of Napoleon. There is a medicinal spring.
Dunton-Waylett (St. Mary)
DUNTON-WAYLETT (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Billericay, hundred of Barstable, S. division of Essex, 6 miles (S. E.) from Brentwood; containing 194 inhabitants. At the time of the Norman survey, the manor of Dunton Hall belonged to Odo, Bishop of Bayeaux, by whom it was bestowed on the abbey of Bec, in Normandy; and on the suppression of alien priories it was granted to King's College, Cambridge. The number of acres is estimated at 2000: the soil is a strong clay, well adapted for grain; the surface is diversified with hills. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at 14. 13. 4., and in the gift of King's College: the tithes have been commuted for 500, and the glebe comprises 27 acres. The church, which is pleasantly situated on rising ground, is a small plain edifice, with a wooden tower and spire.
Duntsbourn, Abbots (St. Peter)
DUNTSBOURN, ABBOTS (St. Peter), a parish, in the union of Cirencester, partly in the hundred of Rapsgate, but chiefly in that of Crowthorne and Minety, E. division of the county of Gloucester, 5 miles (N. W. by N.) from Cirencester; containing 354 inhabitants, of whom 139 are in Duntsbourn-Leer tything. The parish comprises by admeasurement 2269 acres, about two-thirds of which are arable, and the rest pasture. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at 13; net income, 300; patron, D. Mesman, Esq. The tithes were commuted for land and a money payment in 1777.
Duntsbourn-Rouse (St. Michael)
DUNTSBOURN-ROUSE (St. Michael), a parish, in the union of Cirencester, hundred of Crowthorne and Minety, E. division of the county of Gloucester, 4 miles (N. W. by N.) from Cirencester; containing 138 inhabitants. It is situated on the old Roman road from Gloucester to Cirencester, and comprises by admeasurement 2000 acres. The living is a rectory, valued in the king's books at 8. 14. 9., and in the gift of Corpus Christi College, Oxford; the tithes have been commuted partly for land and partly for a rent-charge, making together about 320 per annum; the land contains about 300 acres. The church was built in 1587, and has a carved oak pulpit, and carved prebendal stalls. Sir Robert Atkyns, author of the History of Gloucestershire, resided in the parish.
Dunwich (All Saints)
DUNWICH (All Saints), a sea-port and parish, and formerly a borough and market-town, in the union and hundred of Blything, E. division of Suffolk, 29 miles (N. E.) from Ipswich, and 98 (N. E.) from London; containing 237 inhabitants, and comprising 1337 acres. It is supposed by some to have been a town of the Britons, or a Roman station; some Roman coins have been found. During the heptarchy it was of great importance, being the metropolis of East Anglia, and the seat of a see. By the Saxons it was called Dommoc-ceaster, or Donmoc, from which its present name is derived. Sigebert, King of the East Angles, having been converted to Christianity in 630, founded a bishopric at Dunwich, which was held by Felis, a Burgundian, who was consecrated by Honorius, Archbishop of Canterbury, in 636, and who, after presiding over the see for seventeen years, was buried in the cathedral, which continued to flourish under a succession of prelates till about the middle of the ninth century, when this part of the country was devastated by the Danes. At the time of the Norman survey it was a place of considerable importance, and had an extensive herring-fishery, as the king received from the burgesses annually 50, and 60,000 herrings. The town had anciently a mint; and William of Newburgh, who wrote in the reign of Henry II., styles it a wealthy and famous sea-port. In the reign of Richard I., a fine of 1060 marks was levied on the town, because the inhabitants had supplied the king's enemies with corn; and Ipswich and Yarmouth were fined 200 marks each, for the same offence; whence an estimate may be formed of the relative consequence of this place. During the wars of the barons with King John, it was fortified with a ditch and a rampart; and that monarch, in the first year of his reign, bestowed on the town a charter of incorporation, and exempted the burgesses from tolls and customs, and from sea-wreck and lagan throughout the realm. In the reign of Edward I. it maintained eleven ships of war; and in 1359 furnished six ships and 102 mariners, for the siege of Calais. Such, indeed, was the ancient prosperity of the place that it contained more than 50 religious foundations, including churches, chapels, priories, and hospitals; but being situated on a hill composed of loam and loose sand, it has yielded to the successive encroachments of the sea, which has demolished its edifices, ruined its haven, swallowed up its streets, and reduced it to an insignificant village.
The borough, as originally established by John, was governed by a mayor and bailiffs, till the 22nd of Edward III., when it was placed under the superiutendence of bailiffs only. The charter was ratified and extended in almost every succeeding reign, till that of Edward IV., who, after confirming former privileges, granted the bailiffs and burgesses all wreck of the sea, and an admiralty court, with a jurisdiction from the south pier of Southwold harbour to a point of land formerly called Beacon Hill, now Catliff. The control is vested in two bailiffs, a recorder, two assistant justices, and twelve capital burgesses, with a coroner, town-clerk, and serjeantat-mace. The borough sent members to parliament as early as the 23rd of Edward I., but was disfranchised by the act of 1832. The bailiffs, and the assistant justices (who are the bailiffs for the preceding year), are magistrates for the borough, exercising exclusive jurisdiction. The market, which was held on Saturday, has been discontinued: there is a fair on the 25th of July. Several small boats are employed in the herring-fishery, and there are fish-houses, where herrings and sprats are dried, and prepared for sale. Dunwich anciently contained six parish churches, but they have all been entirely destroyed, except that of All Saints, of which the walls and a tower remain: the living is a perpetual curacy, with a net income of 40, and in the gift of Lord Huntingfield and Frederick Barne, Esq., whose impropriate tithes have been commuted for 100. The church being dilapidated, a new one was commenced in 1826, which is a neat edifice of white brick, with an octagonal tower, built chiefly by subscription among the inhabitants. An hospital for lepers, dedicated to St. James, and another called Maison Dieu, are of great antiquity. According to tradition, the lands of the latter, which were very extensive, were, with the exception of a small portion, lost by encroachments of the sea; and the two were afterwards consolidated into one charity for the relief of widows and poor persons of the town of Dunwich, especially such as are afflicted with insanity or loss of speech: the funds amount to 93. A convent of Franciscan friars was founded in the reign of Henry III., of which there are remains of the walls and two gateways; and there were also a Dominican convent, and a house of Knights Templars. Dunwich gives the title of Viscount to the Earl of Stradbroke.
DUNWOOD, an extra-parochial liberty, adjacent to the parish of East Wellow, and in the union of Romsey, hundred of Thorngate, Romsey and S. divisions of the county of Southampton; containing 8 persons, and comprising 300 acres.