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brought with him the sixth legion, styled Legio Sexta Victrix, which, on his departure, he left stationed at York, which remained here for three hundred years. York increased in splendor and importance, and A. D. 150, was one of the greatest Roman stations in this country.
The next principal occurrence in the history of the city, was the arrival of the Emperor Severus, who, though above three score years of age, left Rome with his two sons, and marched against the Caledonians, whose irruptions it was his determination to suppress. He immediately passed the walls of Hadrian and Antoninus, and drove them into their own territory. He afterwards returned to York, and there died in the sixty-fifth year of his age, and in the eighteenth of his reign. All the writers who have described York, have dwelt with much exultation on the magnificence of the funeral obsequies of Severus. There seems to be little doubt that the funeral pile was erected near Holgate, (about one mile distant from York,) but whether the hills there, called Severus Hitls, were raised by the admiring soldiers to the memory of their departed leader. as Drake supposes, may reasonably be doubted.
The next great event in the Roman annals of York, was the death of the Emperor Constantius. He died in the Imperial Palace of York, 25th July, 306.
Many interesting Roman relics have been discovered in York at various times. The following inscription was engraved on a tablet found several years ago on the site now occupied by the York and North Midland Railway Station. It denotes that a temple was dedicated to the Holy God Serapis, by Claudius Hieronymianus, Legate of the sixth legion, victorious:
LEG VI. VIC.
No sooner had the Romans withdrawn from the country, than the northern tribes poured forth in eager and savage multitudes. “The Britons contemplated their new freedom with surprise and terror, They were left destitute of any civil or military constitution, and their uncertain rulers wanted either skill, or courage, or authority, to direct the public force against the common enemy.' The whole country was helpless before the fierce invaders, and fire and sword began to annihilate the memorials of Italian civilization. The
axons were invited to resist the enemy; they came, and fulfilled their mission; and then seized upon the whole country for their pains. The war now raged between the Britons and their German allies, and after a century and a half of bloodshed and horror, the Heptarchy was established.
About the time of Edward the Confessor, the kingdom was divided. into shires, and York was appointed to be the capital of the shire which bears its name.
On the 23d of September, 1066, was fought the bloody battle of Stamford Bridge, between Harold, the successor of Edward the
Confessor, and Harfager, king of Norway, who, in league with Tosto, the brother of Harold, had entered the estuary of the Hunber, with a fleet of ships. The battle was obstinate and bloody, and when at length victory rested with Harold, two-thirds of the enemy were slain: the bodies of Tosto- and Harfager were found upon the field, and buried at York.
While Harold was celebrating this great deliverance at York, news arrived that another army of invaders under William, Duke of Normandy, had landed at Pevensey in Sussex. Harold hastened to oppose this new rival; and lost both his kingdom and his life at the battle of Hastings.
When William was firmly seated in his conquered kingdom, he ordered the Domesday Survey, that celebrated record of the state of property in England in the eleventh century. It was begun about the year 1080 and finished in 1086. In the time of Edward the Confessor, Drake supposes that there were two thousand inhabited houses in York, containing a population of 10,000; and allowing the suburbs to have been as populous as Leland represents, it may reasonably be supposed that as many more inhabitants resided in them.
No further notice is recorded of the city until the reign of Stephen, when (1137) a great fire consumed thirty-nine parish churches, the cathedral, the abbey of St. Mary, and St. Leonard's Hospital.
One of the first Parliaments mentioned in history was held at York about the year 1160. Another Parliament was held in 1171.
The mob at London, in the year 1189, had vented their fury on the Jews then resident in the metropolis, and on the news reaching York, a general crusade against the detested Israelites was commenced. The persecuted took refuge in the castle, and for some time held that position against their enemies; at length seeing no prospect of deliverance from either famine or massacre, at the instigation of their Rabbis about 2000 of them committed suicide, first setting fire to the buildings. The roar and scorching heat of the flames, the yells and fiendish passions of the mob, with the bleeding corpses of the slain, must have constituted a spectacle too horrible to dwell upon.
In 1298, Edward I. called a Parliament at York, to which he summoned the king of Scotland. This was the beginning of the wars between the two kingdoms, which raged during that and the following reign.
In 1346, the Scots, under their king, David Bruce, entered England, and ravaged the country as far as Durham. Philippa, the wife of Edward III., then in France, collected an army, and gave baitle to the Scots, at Neville's Cross, near Durham, totally defeated them, and left 15,000 of their number dead upon the field.
During the wars of the Roses, York experienced many calamities, and was a near witness of, perhaps, the bloodiest battle ever caused by the demon of civil war. On Palm Sunday (28th March,) 1461, the Yorkists and Lancasterians met at Towton, a village about ten miles from York. No quarter was granted by either side, and 36,000 Englishmen perished on that fatal day. The battle of Wakefield had been fonght the previous year, and gained by the LancasSERIES JII.-VOL. V.
terians. The heads of the young Duke of York and the young Duke of Rutland were set upon Micklegate Bar.
In the 31st year of Henry VIII., the Great Council of the North was established at York, and appointed to hold its sittings at the Manor House.
In 1569 occurred the Rebellion, headed by the Earls of Westmoreland and Northumberland, and aided by many of the Nobility of Yorkshire and Durham. The Earl of Sussex was then at York, as Lurd President of the North, and Sir George Bowes, acting chiefly through his instructions, was actively engaged in opposing the rebels. The city was in daily expectation of a siege: the rebellion was at length. however, suppressed; and then began a severe and vindictive retribution on the part of the Queen's government. A commission sat at York for the trial of the attainted persons. The Earl of Westmoreland escaped, but the Earl of Northumberland was sold into the hands of his enemies by a border chief. After many delays he was brought to York, and beheaded in Pavement, opposite St. Crux Church, August 22d, 1572.
It is well known that Charles I. retired to York at the commencement of the Great Civil War with the Parliament. In April, 1644, the city was besieged by an army of 40,000 men of the Parli. ament's forces, under Sir Thomas Fairfax, the Earl of Manchester, and General Lesley. Force failing, it was resolved to starve the city into surrender; and this, doubtless, in time would have been accomplished; but on the 30th of June Prince Rupert advanced at the head of a Royalist army, to raise the siege. The battle of Marston Moor was the consequence; the fatal issue of which, to the King's cause, is well known.
The battle was fought on the 2d of July, and on the 11th the city was surrendered on honorable terms by Sir Thomas Glenham, the governor, and his garrison. This is the last scene of bloodshed the city has witnessed.”
But its grand Cathedral absorbed most of my attention during my short stay on my way from Huddersfield to Sunderland. Its exte. rior appearance, antiqnity, and grandeur, are next to Westminster Abbey, though not upon quite so magnificent a scale. A synopsis of its history, as we gather it from its best authorities, is as follows:
“To Edwin, a Saxon king of Northumbria, belongs the honor of founding the Cathedral Church of St. Peter at York, and in some measure of introducing the Christian religion into the northern parts of Britain. On the 12th of April, 627, the king, his whole court, and a multitude of the common people, were baptized by Paulinus, in a small wooden oratory erected for the occasion, and preparatory to the foundation of a more enduring edifice. King Edwin was slain in battle in 633, and the church he had commenced was not completed until 642, when Oswald, a zealous Christian, was king. It was severely injured by the invasions of neighboring savage tribes, and in 669 was in ruins. It was restored by Archbishop Wilfred soon after this date, but in 741 was totally destroyed by fire. A new fabric was immediately begun by Archbishop Eg
bert, who was assisted by the advice of the celebrated Alcuin. In the fire which attended the siege of the city, by William the Conqueror, in 1069, the Cathedral Church and its valuable library, sup. posed to have been one of the most extensive in Europe, were completely lost. Archbishop Thomas, the Norman metropolitan of York, lost no time in raising a new church, but this was again fated to perish. The great conflagration of 1137 destroyed not only the Cathedral, but many other ecclesiastical edifices. Upon the ruins of this last building, began to be erected the present noble pile.”
“The Choir (subsequently removed) was restored by Archbishop Roger in 1171. The present South Transept was built by Archbishop Walter de Grey in 1227; that is, the foundation was laid in that year. The present North Transept was built by John de Romayne, the Treasurer of the Church, in 1260. He also erected a central tower (afterwards removed) in the place where the present one stands. The foundation of the present Nave was laid by Archbishop Romayne (son of the Treasurer) on the 7th April, 1291. The Nave with two West Towers was finished in about forty years, during the Archiepiscopate of William de Melton. The greater part of the expense of all these works was defrayed by the usua) expedient in those days-Indulgences.
At the time of the Reformation, the Cathedral suffered severely from the dilapidations inflicted by the zealous expurgators of the ancient faith; and the fanatics, under Cromwell, took great pains to purify the building from whatever remained of old times, as much, be it cbserved, for the value of the brass as the holiness of the sanctuary. The pavement was so much injured by these proceedings, that in 1736 it was necessary to relay it: the design was furnished by the Earl of Burlington, and the cost (.£2,500) was raised by a county subscription."
I will attempt no description of its grand Transepts, north and south, nor of its Nave, its Chapter-House, and Choir; nor can I describe its Towers, central, eastern, or western; nor its painted windows-its angelic bands-its saints and martyrs. Hearing the melodies of a magnificent, thrilling, soul-subduing organ, and now and then the soft and gentle harmonies of human voices, I found my way into the place of prayer and praise; on which were looking down angelic figures, “in full assembly met;” while two Priests or surpliced Parsons, with a choir of twelve male voices, as diverse as the years of twelve, eighteen, and thirty could make them, sustained by the skilful touches of a most accomplished performer, hidden from our view, were obliging the organ to sanctify the devotion and grace the performance to suit the listening ears of angels leaning on their harps as if to catch the pealing anthem as they swelled the note of praise rolling through the vaulted roof. Enamored with the sensitive rather than the spiritual of the performance, brother Henshall and myself spent our hour in listening to this display of daily piety, rather than to wandering through "the long-drawn:
aisles” in quest of new developments of ancient art. But the recollection that this stupendous pile had been reared, adorned, and sanctified by the sale of indulgences choked every feeling of admiration and strangled every sympany with the piety that reared and dedicated this house to the honor and glory of the Founder of the Christian faith. The thought of the myrieds of sins that were sanctified or atoned for by this nefarious traffic-how many horrible deeds were licensed-how many hearts were made desolate with anguish to beautify this sanctuary, finally so disgusted and nauseated my soul with the whole affair, that I have not now a pleasing reminiscence or association in recurring to this so much admired and so far-famed Cathedral.
When any one of ordinary benevolence reverts to Leo X. and his market of sins, tariffed according to guilt, beginning with Sí seven shillings and six pence for inurdering a layman"" and advancing only to "twelve shillings for robbing or burning a house,” and associ- , ates with it the fact that this “Tax of the Sacred Roman Chancery” was ordained for the sake of erecting and adorning St. Peter's Church, methinks he need not wonder that Martin Luther and his associates had, so far as argument is concerned, so easy a task in raising all sorts of men to indignation against an institution that had so far lost all moral feeling and conscience as in open day to send out an embassy of monks ard religious pedlars to sell sins of every die, wholesale and retail, and to grant a formal licence in such words as the following:-"May our Lord Jesus Christ have inercy upon thee and absolve thee by the merits of his holy passion! And I, by his authority, that of his blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and of the most holy Pope, granted and committed to me in these parts, do absolve thee, first, from all ecclesiastic censures, in whatover manner they have been incnrred; then from all thy sins, transgressions, and excesses, how enormous soever they may be, even from such as are reserved for the cognizance of the Holy See, and as far as the keys of the holy church extend. I remit to you all punishment which you deserve in purgatory on their account, and I restore you to the holy sacrament of the church, to the unity of the faithful, and to that innocence and purity which you possessed at baptism; so that when you die the gates of punishment shall be shut, and the gates of the paradise of delights shall be opened; and if you shall not die at present, this grace shall remain in full force when you are at the point of death. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.”
I shall henceforth never admire any work of genius or of art that