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A ramble on the coast of Sussex. [1782.] online

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hampton, Goring, and others along the Coast, on
the left hand ; the first place we came to worthy of
ours or the reader's notice, was


The houses of this once famous Borough have
been suffered to decay in ruins, since the inhabitants
left it for their new City, but the Church is still
preserved and from its tower commands a delightful
prospect ; I left my friend in the chaise at the
Bridge Gate while I prowled about the Church
yard in search of something to amuse the reader

*OLD SHOREHAM is a Parish of the Hundred of Fishersgate, Rape of
Bramber, adjacent to New Shoreham, its Post-Town and Railway Station, 56
miles from London and about 6 west from Brighton. It is a Vicarage valued
*t >V& ^h residence, is the gift of Magdalen College, Oxford, and held by
the Rev. James Bowling Mozley, B.D. Parish Clerk, James Kent. The
register dates from the year 1565. Buckingham House and Park, the seat of
H. Bridger, Esq., is a short distance north of the town. The Duke of Norfolk
is lord of the Manor. The principal landowners are H. Bridger, Esq., and
the Rev. R. P. Hooper. The area of Old Shoreham is 1,870 acres, gross
estimated rental .3,167, ratable value 2,867, The population in 1811, 210
1861, 282.

32 A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex.

and the first object was a Notice in form affixed on
the Church door.

' Old Shoreham, Sussex, Agust

15 day, 1782.

' Pursons qulyfed to sarve on the
1 Jury at the Sises are as follows
' Couluen 1 Eridger, Sq.,
Thamas Ellisian.'

On the North side of the Church, obscured
and overgrown with ivy and wild ash, I discovered
the ruins of an old Tower, which was supported by
alternate arches with Saxon imposts, which had
formerly served for a porch on one side, was a
small aperture which led to a winding staircase
curiosity inclined me to ascend it the top of it was
open to the sky, and no platform remained to secure
a standing the danger of the situation made me
the more expeditious in my view ; I could discover
no traces of any inscription, emblem, or date and
descended with caution : there is, however, a satis-
faction in poking about these remains of former
grandeur, which rouse the feelings, and awaken
recollection it serves to teach us the moral of the
passing hour and to see the ruin of earthly
projects !

x That is Colvill Bridger.

'Here, unfortunate!/, one other name has been cut away from the MS. by
the binder.

A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex. 33


I confess it is now out of time, but in the busi-
ness of our Brighton visit, I forgot to remark That
on the beach below that part of the clift where
Alderman Bull's house 1 stands there are the fallen
ruins of an old Tower, 2 that stood in the Centre of the
Town I have mentioned this only to show how
much the sea has encroached in this County as well
as in that of Kent.

T ALDERMAN BULL'S HOUSE. Mr. Bew in his "Diary" writes, Tuesday,
September 7th, 1779 : " Am viewing my worthy friend, Mr. Bull's house, or
rather box, upon the Clift, between Ship Street and Black-lion Street. He
beckons me in, and shews it throughout. It is one pretty room to the height
of three stories, with a semicircular window comprising most of the front, and
on each floor overlooking the sea all ways, which makes the situation most
delightful. The ground whereon it stands is copyhold indeed the ground in
and about Brighton is mostly so measuring nearly eighteen feet square. The
fine is both certain and small. About fifty years ago, this piece of land was
sold for four pounds ; thirty years since, a purchaser gave eleven ; and about
this time two years, the Alderman bought it for one hundred pounds to build
upon." The premises here referred to are 35, King's-road, those in the
occupation of Mr. Edmonds, boot and shoe maker. In the same Diary, date
Monday, September 7th, 1778, he remarks : "Mr. Alderman Bull, of London,
is building a house on the Clift ; a semi-circular window is in each story. Am
told he meets with many obstacles in the execution of his design. Surely it is
to the interest of these people (meaning the inhabitants) to have such men
become resident among them ; but he is denied a convenient entrance to his
building. A cellar window to the adjoining house projects before his street

Mr. Bew afterwards lived in East-street and was dentist to George IV.,
and, in conjunction with Mr. Frederick Vining, became lessee of the Theatre
Royal, Brighton. Erridge's History of Brighthelmston.

'AN OLD TOWER, i.e., The old Block House, built by Queen Elizabeth.

34 A Ramble on tke Coast of Sussex.

We crossed the new bridge, at Shoreham ferry, 1
and with great difficulty dragged through a veiy bad
road to Arundel.


This Town stands upon the rise of a very steep
hill, with the Church on one side, and the Castle on
the other, at the summit it takes its name as I ap-
prehend from the River Arun which runs at the foot
of it and the older houses which once formed the
whole town standing in a dell or dale.

The Church is large and built in the Saxon
style, in the form of a Cross. The adjoining cloisters
have nothing remaining but the outward walls, and

lr THE BRIDGE AT SHOREHAM FERRY was erected in 1781, at the cost
of 5, ooo, the money raised by a tontine. The tolls payable at the bridge
were considerable, but ceased on the expiration of the tontine, when the bridge
reverted to the Duke of Norfolk.

ARUNDEL, a parish, borough, and market town in the Hundred of
Avisford and the Rape to which it gives name. It is a post-town, has a
Railway Station, and is distant about ten miles East of Chichester. Union
Arundel, population in 1811, 2,188; in 1871, 2,956. Benefice, a Vicarage,
valued at 222?. ; Patron, the Duke of Norfolk ; Incumbent, Rev. G. A. F.
Hart, M.A., of Trinity College, Cambridge. Date of earliest Parish Register,
1560. Acreage, 1,968. Chief landowner, the Duke of Norfolk, Lord of
Arundel Castle and Barony.

This ancient and grandly historical town is one of the most interesting on
the Southern coast. It derives its name from its situation on the river Arun
"Arun, which doth name the beauteous Arundel." Dmy ton's Polyolbion.
Its aspect is very noble and picturesque. J/. A. Lower's Sussex.

A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex. 35

so we as a part of the Vicar's Stable Yard ! I thought
with Cunningham,

" How solemn is the cell o'ergrown with moss,
" That terminates the view, yon cloister'd way !

"In the crush'd wall, a time corroded cross,
" Religion like, stands mould'ring in decay!"

We were tracing the tombstones of many a
' departed Saint, and Mother Dear' when we copied
the following for the sake of its Poetry !

In memory of
Elizabeth, Wife of
Who on the loth of July 1769,
Her Soul to God she did resign ;
With Illness long she was perplex'd,
Until her age was Sixty-Six.

ARUNDEL The Castled

In the afternoon we paid our visit at the Castle
an old rambling large house with nothing worth

T THE CASTLE. Of the origin of the Castle nothing is known. If we
ask the question, who was its original founder ?

" Oblivion laughs and says :
The prey is mine."

Domesday Book mentions the existence of a Castle here before the
Conquest. The herring-bone masonry of its older walls has induced some
antiquaries to believe that they are of Saxon work ; but this is no safe criterion.
The circumference of the building, not including the outworks, is oblong, 950

36 A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex.

seeing, except a few bad pictures of the Fitz Allen's
who were formerly the possessors of the estate ; an

feet long by 250 feet wide, and encloses 5^ acres. The walls are from five to
twelve feet thick, and the ground plan resembles that of Windsor Castle. Its
circular Keep is raised on a mound partly natural, but more artificial, in the
style of many fortresses both in England and Normandy. The walls, which
are strengthened with buttresses, are from eight to ten feet thick. Beneath it
is a small subterraneous room, and above it formerly stood an oratory dedicated
to St. Martin. This keep was flanked by an oblong tower, guarded by a
portcullis, in which was the present entrance, approached by a long flight of
steps. By these steps and a sallyport it is connected with the great gateway.
It has a plain circular arch under a square tower, containing two chambers of
state, in which the Empress Maude Js traditionally said to have been received.
The outward gateway was added in the reign of Edward I., and was fifty feet
high. A full architectural description of this grand pile, as it anciently
existed, would be beyond our scope. But we must mention, as a part of the
legendary lore of Sussex, the tradition of the building known as Bevis' Tower
having been occupied by that renowned giant when he consented to
become warder to the Earls of Arundel. His weekly allowance of provisions
consisted of an ox, two hogsheads of beer, and bread and mustard ad libitum I
" His steed, " Hirondelle," was thought to have given name to the town,
the arms of which are still a swallow (Fr. Hirondelle, a swallow) ; and his
great sword "Morglay" was long preserved in the armoury of the castle.
A mound in the park was considered as the giant's grave. In the great hall
which stood on the western side of the court, Henry Fitz- Alan, the last Earl,
gave lordly banquets. This hall and the castle generally suffered so greatly
from the siege of 1643, from artillery placed on f he tower of the church, that
the noble proprietors seldom resided here until about 1716, when Thomas,
Duke of Norfolk, erected a brick house within the area. In 1806 the re-
maining walls of the hall were removed. The chapel of St. George, founded
on the S.W. side of the castle before 1275, was forty feet long, and remained
till the edifice was partly rebuilt in 1 796. It was to have been an establish-
ment for six priests, but the funds were afterwards appropriated to the College
of the Holy Trinity hereafter referred to.

The military history of this renowned castle is minutely recorded in our
chronicles. William Rufus, on his landing from Normandy, occupied it in
1097. There was a siege in 1102 by Henry I., when Robert de Belesme

A Ramble on the Coast oj Sussex. 3 7

old broad-iron-blade Sword of State ; and the

Here we entered with due decorum and reve-
rence the Altar is very richly gilded, and from the
ceiling, near to it hung a lamp. My friend asked
the reason ' of its being kept burning, when nobody
was there ?'

The Old Lady Abbess told him because ' J^hey
believed that He himself was always there, in that

surrendered it to the King and retired into Normandy, but the fortress
suffered no detriment. In 1139 the Empress Maude, with her illegitimate
brother, Robert Earl of Gloucester, landed at Littlehampton, and was received
at the castle with great courtesy by Queen Adeliza. King Stephen shortly
after appeared with his forces before the castle, and demanded the person of
the Empress, but after a time Maude was permitted to withdraw to Bristol.
King Edward I. visited this grand abode in 1302. For 500 years the castle
was left in comparative peace.

The second siege of Arundel Castle took place in December, 1643, by
Sir William Waller, who, as Vicars says, " Finding the castle gate shut fast,
set a petard to the gate and blew it open ; and so most resolutely entered the
castle." Details of this memorable siege appear in Vol. xx. of the " Sussex
Collections," and still fuller in Dalla way's Rape of Arundel. See the account
given in the former work, and the sad death of Sir Wm. Springett. Dugdale
says that the castle was taken Dec. 9th, 1643, and retaken by Waller,
January 6th, 1644.

It is beyond our scope to give full particulars of the great families of
Montgomeri, D'Albini, Fitz-Alan, and Howard ; but they may be found in
Dalla way's elaborate History of the Rape of Arundel. He, anxious to do
honour to his patron, Bernard-Edward, Duke of Norfolk, gives the minutest
account of those families.

Arundel Castle abounds in family portraits and other pictures of more or
less historical interest, but the one which will be sure to attract the observation
of the visitor is that of Charles I., by Vandyke. It may be considered to be
one of the finest works of that great master. M. A. Loner's Sussex.

38 A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex.

very Tabernacle (pointing to it), and we cannot leave
Him in the dark."

I spent some time in looking over one of the
Books of Service I found there and was surprised
to find it so peculiarly similar to our own ; but still
differing in verbal interpolations and exclusions which
shewed in every page the strong difference of Faith ;
but surely that profession is most suitable to the
Divine Author of all good which esteems all men
acceptable who are all sincere. We have no right
to condemn for prejudices !


We traversed these silent remains with more

Reader, figure to yourself the vestiges of a
proud staircase leading to the apartments over the
gate, and from them across a battlement to around
Archer's Tower. In the centre was a staircase that
led into a dark chamber on the left hand, we
ascended a winding staircase which opened to a
platform that extended round the inside of the
tower, for the archers to take their stand near the
narrow apertures, and niches for their place of

The antiquity of this building is its chief
ornament : but reflection is again called forth, when
we see a company of harmless birds take shelter in

A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex. 39

the former seat of warfare, and the timid rabbit
sport harmless and undisturbed at its base ! We
discovered so large a break in one part of the
wall, that we judged it could not stand the blasts of
many winters, and it seemed that

" Time the hoar Tyrant, though not moved to spare,
" Relented when he struck its finished pride ;

" And partly the rude ravage to repair,

" The tottering towers with twisted ivy tied."

On the next morning we pursued our way to


Turning on the left, when we quitted Arundel
and crossed the bridge, we took the road through
Findon, and from thence through a long wood,
which afforded us a morning repast of filberts that
hung in clusters as we passed along a shady grove,
turned off from the side of the road. I got out of
the chaise to enjoy it.

I had not time to follow its unknown track
the leafy pathway did not seem to be the frequent
traverse of human footsteps all silence reigned
save but the twittering of a single robin. I was
open for the most romantic pleasures, and I fancied
it lisped a name which ever rested tenderness in my
breast it flew away and I had no other resource,

40 A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex.

but to pursue its lesson ; and on a soft ash just
turning from the road, where no prying eyes of
passengers would penetrate, save but of those, who
having read this simple tale and ' there shall pass in
future bye,' I graved that name, which silence best


Here we only stopped to dine and then pursued
our return to Horsham.


Having returned our chaise, I looked in at the
Bookseller's not more to see the books, than the
smart female figure, which traversed the floor in very
quick paces. She was dressed in a white gown tied
with pink ribbons could not boast much height,
and what she wanted in beauty she made up with
taste, fashion, and manner.

I found by her mode of speech, she was not
unused to lively conversation.

The companion was a notable sort of a looking
girl, and rather inclined to be pretty.

The Conversation.

" You have some well chosen books here

A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex. 4 1

" Yes, Sir, but I never read I perceive you
are a reader, and I have long wished to meet with,
a person of judgment, who could put me into a
course of reading, instructive and entertaining."

" I should have supposed, Madam, from your
choice of Language, that you had already seen the
best Authors in the lines you mention."

" No ; I never met with a Man of Taste yet,
Sir, and as to the Woman, you know -

I spoke of Miss Seward, Mr. Hayley, and our
modern Writers ; she was unacquainted with
them all.

I mentioned Swift, and Sterne she had heard
their names, but knew nothing of their works. I
recommended to her the Sentimental Journey she
readily took it down from the shelf. I observed she
would find not only amusement but much use in
reading Mr. Sterne.

She desired I would explain the word use
this at once proved she was not unacquainted with

I added that the chief use of all such writers
is, that they have made us look more into Nature

[the Lady smiled.]

than could possibly be taught by the stiff writers of
former times, who clouded their researches with the
gloom of barbarous pedantry

[the Lady looked grave.]

42 A Ramble on the Coast oj Sussex.

These shew us Nature in all her shapes and
fancies tell us what we are and what we feel

[oh delightful ! said the Lady.]

and prevent us from passing over the many effusions
of sensibility which before them were never known.
In the same class you may take Shenstone Gay
and Cunningham in Poetry all these have their
peculiar line of excellence, and should be preceded
by the native warblings of Thomson.

At this moment we were interrupted by the
entrance of an officer, who came to return the first
volume of Cecilia.

It gave a new turn to our conversation.

"Are these all Novels, you have been recom-
mending to me, Sir ?"

" Am I so romantic in my ideas, Madam ? and
are the susceptibilities of Nature only to be found in
Novels ?"

" Surely not, Sir, though I know it is a common
practice, if we ask any of you for a book, you always
recommend a Romance Women are supposed to
know nothing else but the foolishness of Love."

" Not so, Madam, though I confess the Ladies
are generally more versed in the Arts of Love and
Address, than we are."

" Sir ?"

" When I say Arts, I do not mean so base a
word as Artifice for which I see you have mistaken

A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex. 43

my meaning. It is certain that the power which
always accompanies a woman, is exerted with more
success over our's, than over her own sex ; for
excuse me, they know its source and I see plainly
that I need not tell you, that caprice, spirit, beauty,
vivacity, and a quick resolve, will now and then
shake the little basis of a man's happiness to the
bottom hence it is we become dupes to the form
which expresses a noble sentiment we view the
object with a prejudice that blinds every Argument
and all this time we forget the essentials of Temper,
Situation, Character, or Fortune."

" Fortune ! Sir ; is that a proper word to con-
clude your observation ? I should have expected
horn you a contempt of fortune. Women do not
marry for fortune, Sir."

" I suppose," returned I, " that such weak
researches are equally rewarded in both parties
but they are not the causes of our early attentions."

" I know not what opinions to gather from your
conversation" added the Lady " whether you are
an advocate for the belle passion as it's called, or not
for my own part I assure you, that if people love
from sincerity, then it is by no means to be laughed
at, if they love from necessity, they deserve it"

" I am happy to find you perfectly of my own
mind," Madam. " Everything that tends to enlarge
the heart, should claim our warmest zeal. Had I

44 <A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex.

twenty children, I should wish them to form attach-
ments the moment they became susceptible ; this
keeps young people out of harm's way teaches
them to open the hand and the heart together
teaches them to glow with philanthropy and emula-
tion and let's them know they were born for others
more than for themselves I assure you I am far
from laughing at the trifles of love they all tend
to a good end besides, there are many foolishnesses
in love, which none but the parties themselves can
enjoy, and therefore others cannot pretend to examine
them ; and these are naturally produced after a
course of intimacy.

" And pray, Sir, thence, since we have engaged
so deeply in the subject, what are your sentiments
about attachments at first sight ?"

" That they cannot be founded in esteem that
they have not true and pure affection for their basis,
and that the same caprice which produced it may
cause another, and so on. Nothing decays sooner
than rapture it is instantaneous. Affection is
formed by a gradual progress mere passion springs
from a sudden emotion and thus it is, that affection
becomes more lasting.

" I think so, returned she, " but the intimacies
you mention, are not proper to be admitted. Why
so ? Because a woman must not be seen too often
in the company of the same man, lest she should

A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex. 45

lose her character ; and, besides, men are all so
apt to catch at a chance expression a woman may
drop in conversation, and make use of them."

" Make use of them for what, Madam ?"

" Oh! for the purposes of Human Nature, Sir,
as you was saying just now." She remained silent,
and screwed herself up to aid her last argument

" I should not mistake you for a prude, Madam ;
and yet what you now say puts me on my guard.
Indeed, our present conversation seems to give you
a better character."

" A better character, Sir ! Can there be a better
character than prudence ?"

" Certainly not, but you mistake Prudery for
Prudence they are nearly allied, but not the same.
I always rise into impatience at the name of Prude
Prudery is the offspring of a cold heart that if it
ever feels the impulses of Nature, curbs and stifles
the emotion and when their day is passed, the
objects- of it, give themselves up to the keenest
pangs of spleen, dissatisfaction, and misanthrophy."

" A fine picture truly, Sir."

" Such a one, Madam, as does not suit your face
or figure."

" I am sorry to have so long intruded upon you
but your conversation has led me into a rudeness
for which my absence must excuse me."

46 A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex.

I returned to the Inn, where I found my worthy
friend waiting for his supper.

He called my mind from its late rambles, to the
dry office of settling our Current Account. We had
spared few expenses - - that would gratify our
Journey, and we counted a balance only of four

Like Gil Bias, I counted the ducats into the
crown of my hat, three times, but could not increase
their number.

In the evening we called in the Landlady, and
told her our Case. It was a piteous one but we
promised to repay to the coachman the amount of
our expenses, when we arrived in London. She
was rude and illiberal and we dismissed her.

The chagrin of such a dishonour which she
seemed inclined to put about through the Town,
kept me awake for some time after I went to bed
but this was corrected in the morning.

While the horses were harnessing I walked to
the Causey' where I was surprised to see a door

CAUSEY, I.e., Causeway, a way raised above the natural level of the
ground a pavement.

" In a picturesque street called The Caiitevay is a building of the l6th
century, for many generations the property of the Hurst family.

Horsham has been a Parliamentary Borough from 1295, but by the Reform
Act it has lost one of its members. From very early times Horsham had a
4 merchant's guild.' which proves it to have been a place of some commercial
importance." Mark Anthony Loner's History of Sussex.

A Ramble on the Coast of Sussex. 47

open, and a lady and little boy, taking leave of her

I accosted her at a few paces from her own

I presumed that she was going to Town ; and
said that myself and an older friend were to be her
companions. She answered in the affirmative. I
said I had a strange request to make to her, that
necessity, and perfect necessity, obliged me to make
that we had taken a short tour round the Coast of
Sussex, and spent more money at Brighton than
we ought to have done that our finances

[Sir ! said she, and retreated back]
were much reduced the Woman of the Inn had
behaved very illiberally, and I requested of her,
as she was going to town, and I could there return
her civility, to lend me one guinea, or half-a-guinea.
She hesitated thought it a strange request to a
woman and at that time of morning.

Her fears were natural I gave her my address
she did not know me, but knew my neighbour-
hood. I said I felt myself in an awkward predica-
ment that it hurt me to think of leaving a town
under a very unfavourable stigma and that my

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