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galleys, under the command of the Prince of Sicily, seized and hanged the principal inhabitants, piundered the town, and reduced a great part of it to ashes. They did not, however, escape with impunity, as we learn from Stow's Annals *
From this misfortune Southampton appears to have soon recovered; as, in 1345, we find it furnishing 21 ships and 576 mariners to the fleet collected by Edward III for the invasion of France; and that moparch, with his gallant son, Edward the Black Prince, embarked at this port, with the army which afterwards gained the celebrated victory of Cressy. Here also Henry V assembled his forces, in 1415, and while waiting for a favourable wind, discovered the plot laid by the Earl of Cambridge, Lord Scrope, and others, to assassinate him; they were immediately tried and convicted, and the above noblemen, with Sir Thomas Grey, were executed; but the object proposed by the conspirators, in the event of their success, is by no means clear; some historians asserting that they were bribed by the King of France to murder Henry merely with the view of preventing his invasion of that country; while others state that on his death it was intended to raise to the throne the Earl of March, whose grandson was afterwards Edward IV, and whose sister the Earl of Cambridge had married. Their bodies were interred in the chapel of God's House, where a stone was placed by Lord Delawar, in the last century, recording their names, &c.
During the Wars of the Roses, Southampton felt the sad effects of that unhappy contest, being alternately contended for by both parties, and many of the inhabitants losing their lives; after the final triumph of the Yorkists, upwards of twenty of the Lancastrians were put to death here by order of Edward IV, who gratified the barbarity of his disposition by hastening hither to behold their execution, and causing their bodies to be quartered, and placed in various parts of the town: the celebrated Bastard Falconbridge was also executed here in 1470.
* “Fifty galleys, well manned and furnished, came to Southampton, about nine of the clock, and sacked the town, the townsmen running away for fear. By the break of the next day, they which fled, by help of the country thereabout, came against the pirates, and fought with them; in the which skirmish were slain to the number of 300 pirates, together with their captain, the King of Sicily's son. To this
young man the French King had given whatever he got in the kingdom of England; but he being beaten down by a certain man of the country, cried · Rançon!' Notwithstanding the husbandman laid on him with his club, till he had slain him, speaking these words: “ Yea,' quoth he, “I know well enough thou art a Françon, and therefore shalt thou die!' for he understood not his speech, neither had he any skill to take gentlemen prisoners, and to keep them for their ransom."
After this period we find no remarkable events in the anpals of this town; the principal occurrences connected with it are the visits of Charles V in 1522, Edward VI. in 1552, Philip of Spain in 1554, and Queen Elizabeth in 1560. During the latter reign Southampton was one of the places appointed by the Queen for the residence of the Protestants whom the tyrannical measures of the Duke of Alva had driven from the Netherlands, and who amply repaid the shelter afforded them in this country by the introduction of various trades and manufactures before unknown here: a chapel in God's House was granted to them, where service is still performed in the French language.
In 1625, Charles I, having quitted the metropolis in consequence of the plague, resided here some time, and by him the former Charters were renewed and enlarged. During the Civil Wars, this town appears to have favoured the Parliamentary party, but no event of importance occurred here. In 1665 it suffered dreadfully from the plague which at the same time desolated London; and a want of provisions being added to the disease under which the poor inhabitants suffered, it was feared that, driven to desperation, they might break the lines drawn around them, and spread the infection still more extensively; a petition for assistance was therefore presented to the king, then residing at Salisbury; and his Majesty immediately set on foot a subscription, giving £50 himself, which example was followed by many of the nobility, and others, and about £2000 were collected.
From this time we do not meet with any event of importance in the history of this town. Early in the eighteenth century it is stated to have declined from its former prosperity; but about fifty years afterwards it experienced a favourable change by becoming a fashionable watering-place; the Duke of York, brother of George III, was one of its first visitants; his presence attracted many others, and the beauty and salubrity of the situation induced several gentlemen to build villas in the neighbourhood; it has since that period progressively increased in wealth and population, and the number of its inhabitants, in 1821, was 13,353.
* In a letter of this prince to his friend Fitzpatric he thus mentions this visit: “From Portsmouth we went to Southampton town. had bestowed for our coming great cost in painting, repairing, and rampiring their walls. The towne is handsome, and for the bignesse of it as faire houses as be at London. The citizens made great cheere, and many of them kept costly tables.”
During the revolutionary war, several large bodies of troops were assembled and embarked here; and it is a painful fact, that, with the exception of the last, all these armaments were unfortunate in their results, and attended with a dreadful waste of life; they were, the army which in 1794 proceeded with the Earl of Moira to the Netherlands; the unfortunate expedition to Quiberon Bay in the same year;
the fine army sent to the West Indies * in 1795; another to the Helder in 1799; and a fifth, which embarked for Egypt, under Sir R. Abercrombie, in 1800.
Southampton formerly contained six parish Churches; they are now reduced to five, that of St. John having been taken down in the reign of Charles II, and the parish united to St. Lawrence. St. Michael's is the most ancient Church in the town, and forms the eastern side of a square of the same name; it consists of a nave, chancel, and side aisles, with a low central tower, and a lofty and slender octagonal spire, erected about 1740, as a mark for ships entering the port. Several parts of this Church still exhibit traces of its Saxon origin, although much obscured by subsequent alterations; it has also a very curious antique Font, of which a particular description is given by Sir H. Englefield, and which he states to be ornamented " in the very rudest style of Saxon sculpture." In the chancel is a handsome monument of Lord Chancellor Wriothesley; and this Church also contains the remains of Bennet
* “ This army was sent,” says Mr. Edwards, in his History of the West Indies, “ to perish, not in the field of honour, but on the bed of sickness; not amidst the shouts of victory, but the groans of despair ;-condemned to linger in the horrors of pestilence; to fall without a conflict, and die without renown."
Langton, Esq. the friend of Dr. Johnson, who died in 1801. In this Church the Mayor is sworn into office; and it has recently been adapted to the increasing population of the town by an addition of 900 sittings, of which 700 are free for the poor.
All Saints' Church, in High Street, is an elegant modern building, erected about 1792, from the designs of Mr. Reveley. It is 60 feet wide in front, and has a fine portico of the Ionic order; at the east end is a turret, crowned with a dome, which, from its elevated situation, is visible at a great distance. The interior of the Church is 95 feet in length, beside a recess for the altar; 61 in width, and 47 in height. Grecian pilasters, similar to those which are placed round the outside of the building, are also made use of within; and from their mouldings, which are continued quite round the Church, springs the arched ceiling, with a rise of eight feet, wholly unsupported by any pillars or other means; its bold and graceful curvature produces a feeling of admiration, which is increased by the contemplation of the beautiful altar-piece, standing in a recessed arch, and highly ornamented. Beneath this Church are arched vaults or catacombs, contrived to prevent any nuisance from the practice of interment; among other precautions, the coffins, which must be of lead, are enclosed in stone. Here are deposited the remains of Captain Carteret, the circumnavigator, and of Bryan Edwards, author of the History of the West Indies.
Holy Rood Church, also situated in High Street. is a large edifice, with a tower and lofty spire at the south-west angle, and a colonnade in front, before which the hustings are erected for the election of Members of Parliament. The interior of the Church is handsome, it has a fine organ, and contains several good monuments, one of which, erected by Rys! brach, to the memory of Miss E. Stanley, an accomplished young lady, who died at the
age of 18, in 1738, has an elegant inscription by Thomson, who has also celebrated her in the Seasons. St. Lawrence's, about the middle of the High Street, does not possess any claim to particular notice. St. Mary's, in a street of the same name, is a neat building, erected in 1711, by the Rev. Archdeacon Bride
oak, who at that time held the living, and thought himself obliged to devote a part of its large income, which is now estimated at £2000 per annum, to this object, as the old Church had long lain in ruins; he also rebuilt the parsonage house, which was accidentally burnt. This Church has been recently enlarged by 400 additional seats, 200 of which are intended for the gratuitous accommodation of the poor.
In addition to its Churches, Southampton contains places of worship for the Independents, Baptists, Methodists, Society of Friends, and Roman Catholics; divine service is also performed in the French language, but according to the ritual of the Church of England, in the Chapel belonging to the ancient Hospital of God's House." Numerous charitable institutions have been established here, the most ancient of which is the Hospital, just mentioned, which was founded in the thirteenth century, and at present maintains a Warden, four aged men, and as many women, who receive a small weekly stipend, and an allowance of coals. St. John's Hospital, of later institution, had a Master and six boys, who were instructed in the woollen manufacture; this establishment has since merged in the General Poor House, built in 1776, when all the parishes of the town were incorporated by Act of Parliament; the last-named building is extensive and convenient, and is under the management of a Court of Guardians, whose attention to the comfort of the poor inmates is said to be highly praiseworthy. Near the entrance of the town from London is a neat range of Almshouses, erected about 1790, from the accumulation of a sum bequeathed one hundred years before for that purpose by R. Thorner, Esq. a benevolent member of the Dissenting congregation in Southampton; from the same fund the eighteen poor widows who reside here, have each a weekly allowance of two shillings; and, with a proper foresight, the founder directed that any future accumulations should be applied in the extension of the building.
A Free Grammar School was established here by Edward VI, of which the Master is appointed by the Corporation. A Charity School, for ten boys, is supported by a sum bequeathed about 1760, by Alderman Taunton, of this town, who also left annual