Bishopsgate Ward. Spittal Field. 98

Bishopsgate Ward. Spittal Field.

And in a Cart two white Bears. The Occasion whereof I do not pretend to shew.]

A part of the large Churchyard pertaining to this Hospital, and severed from the rest with a Brick Wall, yet remaineth as of old time, with a Pulpit Cross therein, somewhat like to that in Paul's Church-yard. And against the said Pulpit on the South Side before the Charnel and Chapel of St. Edmond the Bishop, and Mary Magdalen, (which Chapel was founded about the Year 1391. by W. Evesham, Citizen and Pepperer of London, who was there buried) remaineth also one fair builded House of two Stories in height for the Maior, and other honourable Persons, with the Aldermen and Sheriffs to sit in, there to hear the Sermons preached upon Easter Holidays. In the Loft over them stood the Bishop of London, and other Prelates; now the Ladies and Aldermen's Wives do there stand at a fair Window, or sit at their Pleasure.

Pulpit Cross at the Spittle.

Charnel and Chapel of St. Edmond and of Mary Magdalen.

Sermons in the Easter Holidays at the Spittle.

And here it is to be noted, that time out of mind it hath been a laudable Custom., that on Good Friday in the Afternoon, some especial learned Man, by Appointment of the Prelates, doth preach a Sermon at Paul's Cross, treating of Christ's Passion: and upon the three next Easter Holidays, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, the like learned Men, by the like Appointment, do use to preach on the Forenoon at the said Spittle, to persuade the Articles of Christ's Resurrection: and then on Low Sunday, before Noon, one other learned Man at Paul's Cross is to make Rehearsal of those four former Sermons, either commending or reproving them, as to him (by Judgment of the learned Divines) is thought convenient. And that done, he is to make a Sermon himself, which in all were five Sermons in one. At these Sermons so severally preached, the Maior with his Brethren the Aldermen are accustomed to be present in their Violets at Paul's on Good Friday; and in their Scarlets, both they and their Wives, at the Spittle in the Holidays, except Wednesday, in Violet: and the Maior with his Brethren on Low Sunday in Scarlet at Paul's Cross, continued until this Day.

Customary Sermons at Paul's Cross and the Spittle.

The Rehearsal Sermon.

Touching the Antiquity of this Custom, I find none other than that in the Year 1398. King Richard having procured from Rome Confirmation of such Statutes and Ordinances as were made in the Parliament begun at Westminster, and ended at Shrewsbury, he caused the same Confirmation to be read and pronounced at Paul's Cross and at St. Mary Spittle, in the Sermons before all the People. Philip Malpas, one of the Sheriffs in theYear 1439. the 18th of Henry VII. gave 20s. by the Year to the three Preachers at the Spittle. Stephen Forster Maior in the Year 1454. gave 40l. to the Preachers of Paul's Cross and Spittle. I find also, that the aforesaid House, wherein the Maior and Aldermen do sit at the Spittle, was builded (for that purpose) of the Goods and by the Executors of Rich. Rawson Alderman, and Isabel hisWife, in the Year 1488. In the Year 1594, this Pulpit being old, was taken down, and a new one set up, the Preachers Face turned towards the South, which was before toward the West. Also a large house (on the East side of the said Pulpit) was then builded, for the Governors and Children of Christ's Hospital to sit in: and this was done of the Goods of William Etkins Alderman, late deceased. But within the first Year, the same House decaying, and like to have fallen, was again (with great Cost) repaired at the City's Charge.

The Antiquity of it.

House in St. Mary Spittle Churchyard builded for the Maior and Aldermen.

Pulpit Cross in Spittle Churchyard new builded.

A House in Spittle Churchyard builded for the Governors and Children of Christ's Hospital.

Here I may not omit an especial Matter, because in my remembrance, nor else (in my read- ing) I find not the like. On Monday in Easter Week, being April 21. 1617. our most gracious Sovereign King James being gone on his Journey to Scotland; it pleased divers Lords and others of his Majesty's most honourable Privy Council to visit this Place of St. Mary Spittle, and there to remain in Company (during the Sermon time) with the Lord Maior, Sir John Lemman, and his worthy Brethren the Aldermen of this City. The Sermon being ended, they rode home with the Lord Maior to his House near Belinsgate. Where they were lovingly and honourably both welcomed and entertained with a most liberal and bountiful Dinner, and all the Gentlemen attending on them. The Lords were the right Reverend Father in God George Lord Archbishop of Canterbury, Sir Francis Bacon, Lord Keeper of the Great Seal of England; the Earl of Worcester; the Lord Lisle, Lord Chamberlain to her Majesty; the Lord Bishop of London; the Lord Carew; the Lord Knivet; Sir Julius Cæsar; Sir Thomas Edmonds; Sir John Digby, with divers other Knights and worthy Gentlemen, &c. And the Preacher that then preached, was master Doctor Page, of Deptford in Kent.]

A. M.

On Monday in Easter Week. An. Dom. 1617.

At St. Mary Spittle, the Nobility entertain'd by Lemman, Maior.

Among these, and other memorable things concerning these Spittle Sermons, it deserves to be recorded, that in the year 1632. three worthy Brethren, Dr. Samuel Wincope, Mr. Thomas Wincope, Mr. John Wincope, learned and reverend Divines, preached a St. Mary Spittle, upon Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in Easter Week. They were called to preach from the divers Places of their Habitations, distant many Miles from one another. And as they happily met here to preach, so did the Matter upon which they preached not less happily concurr. For though their Texts were several, yet their Discourses were upon the same Subject with an apt dependance upon one another; like the Links of a golden Chain; the second beginning where the first ended; and the third, where the second ended, and making a suitable and excellent Conclusion of the two former Sermons with his own.]

Three Brothers preach the three Spittle Sermons.


On the East Side of this Churchyard lyeth a large Field, of old time called Lolesworth, now Spittlefield, which about the Year 1576. was broken up for Clay to make Brick: In the digging whereof many earthen Pots called Urnæ, were found full of Ashes, and burnt Bones of Men, to wit of the Romans that inhabited here. For it was the Custom of the Romans, to burn their Dead, to put their Ashes in an Urn, and then to bury the same with certain Ceremonies, in some Field appointed for that purpose near unto the City.

Lolesworth Field.

Burial of the Romans in this Field.

Old Monuments of the Romans found.

Every of these Pots had in them (with the Ashes of the Dead) one Piece of Copper Money, with the Inscription of the Emperour then reigning: Some of them were of Claudius, some of Vespasian, some of Nero, of Antoninus Pius, of Trajanus, and others. Besides those Urns, many other Pots were found in the same place, made of a white Earth, with long Necks, and Handles, like to our Stone Jugs: These were empty, but seemed to be buried full of some liquid Matter, long since consumed and soked through. For there were found divers Vials, and other fashioned Glasses, some most cunningly wrought, such as I have not seen the like, and some of Crystal, all which had Water in them, nothing differing in clearness, taste, or favour from common Spring Water, whatsoever it was at the first. Some of these Glasses had Oil in them very thick, and earthy in favour. Some were supposed to have Balm in them, but had lost the Virtue: Many if these Pots and Glasses were broken in cutting of the Clay, so that few were taken up whole.

Urnes found,

And Vials.