Wanderings in Wessex eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 275 pages of information about Wanderings in Wessex.
The tower, indeed, is Norman, but the clustered columns of the nave with their carved capitals and bases are beautiful specimens of fourteenth-century architecture.  The Early English chancel has a triple east window and side lancets.  The two-storied porch is late Decorated or early Perpendicular.  A tomb of Giles Rowbach and tablets to the Bowie family are of interest.  One of the Bowles, a vicar of the church, was a notable Spanish scholar and made a translation of Don Quixote.  Boscombe Rectory was once occupied by “the judicious” Hooker and the first part of the Ecclesiastical Polity was written here.  Another theologian—­Nicholas Fuller—­famous in his day, held the living of the next village—­Allington.  At Newton Tony, over eight miles from Salisbury, the pleasant scenery of the Bourne may be said to end.  Beyond, we reach an outlying part of the Plain that is seen to better advantage from other directions.  Newton Tony has a station on the branch line to Amesbury and Bulford Camp.  Wilbury House, on the road to Cholderton, was erected in the Italian style in the early seventeenth century by the Bensons, a noted family in those days, one of whose members is commemorated by a brass in the church.  The house was the home of the late Mr. T. Gibson Bowles, formerly the member for King’s Lynn.

[Illustration:  LUDGERSHALL CHURCH.]

The valley goes on to Cholderton, Shipton Bellinger and Tidworth, where are situated the head-quarters of the Southern Military Command.  The Collingbournes—­Ducis and Kingston—­are much farther on, right at the head of the valley, and eighteen miles from Salisbury.  If the explorer has penetrated as far as Tidworth a train can be taken three miles across the Down to Ludgershall, a very ancient place near the Hampshire border.  It would seem to have been of some importance in earlier days.  “The castell stoode in a parke now clene doun.  There is of late times a pratie lodge made by the ruines of it and longgethe to the king” (Leland).  To this castle came the Empress Maud and not far away the seal of her champion, Milo of Hereford, was found some years since.  All that is left to show that Leland’s “clene doun” was a slight exaggeration is a portion of the wall of the keep built into a farm at the farther end of the little town.  The twelfth-century church is interesting.  Here may be seen the effigy of Sir Richard Brydges, the first owner of the Manor House (or “pratie lodge”) which succeeded the castle.  The picturesque appearance of the main street is enhanced by the old Market Cross which bears carved representations of the Crucifixion and other scenes from the New Testament.

[Illustration:  STONEHENGE.]

CHAPTER X

STONEHENGE AND THE PLAIN

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Wanderings in Wessex from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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