ID: MSY_MOR / Philip Morant

TitleMorant history 1768 - Mersea
Abstract

Philip Morant's The History and Antiquities of Essex 1768

Mersey Pages 424 to 430.

MERSEY

This is an island at the confluence of the river Colne, and of the river Blackwater, or Idumanius, where they discharge themselves into the German Ocean. It is parted, on the west and north, from Winstree hundred, by a channel or fleete, called Pyefleet, which produces the best Colchester oysters.

The name is formed from the Saxon words, Mejne, the sea, or a marsh ; and iz, an island ; unless the first part of the name should be derived from the word Mæjna, the extremities, or a boundary, this being a boundary here against the sea ; but the former appears to me to be the most probable. It is otherwise written in books and records, Meres-ig, Mæres-ige, Meresai, and Meresaia.

The place appears to have been the residence or seat of some considerable Roman General, and, unquestionably, of the Count of the Saxon Shore : for here are striking remains of the magnificence of that people, and this island stood most convenient for preventing the piracies of the northern rovers, either up the Colne water or Blackwater-bay.

Upon repairing West Mersey-hall, and making a new garden, a fine piece of Mosaic work was discovered. In the year 1730, Cromwel Mortimer, M. D. Fellow of the College of Physicians, and Secretary to the Royal Society, son of John Mortimer, of Topingho-hall in this county, went down to examine it, and to take a draught of that part of the pavement which lies in the hall-yard. The account he gave of it, with his conjectures on the whole, is as follows:-

On the right of the gravel-walk, which goes from the green to the hall-door, about a foot deep, he found the south-east corner of the pavement. He first met with a white bordure, twenty-one inches wide, composed of Tessellæ, three quarters of an inch square ; then a narrow rist of black, three inches wide ; and within this, a white list, about the same wideness ; which three seem to have run through the whole pavement, without interruption ; and all the Tessellæ of these parts are but half inch square. Next to the white list, runs a wreath, or chain, five inches and half wide, of black, blue, and white, beautifully disposed in shades, which ran the whole length of the eastern side, and making a return to the south-east angle, is interwoven with another short wreath of red, yellow, and white, disposed in shades in the form of an S, made square, but separated by a narrow white list, except where they cross each other. Just beyond the red wreath, on the south side, was a white square, bordered with black, in the middle of which was a large rose, of four leaves, shaded with red, yellow, and white ; within this square, ran a narrow white list, east and west ; close to this, a black, blue, and white wreath, like that on the east side ; and within that, another white list, an inch and three-quarters wide, which seemed to run round the whole work. At the south-east angle of this white list, begin two parallel lists, of a sort of fret-work, five inches wide and near five foot long, running south and north, joined at the north end by a return of the frets. These frets are alternately shaded with black, blue, and white, or red, yellow, and white ; enclosing a white space four foot and half long and nine inches wide, containing a wreath of six ivy leaves ; the stalks and edges of the leaves blue, the middle of the leaves alternately shaded, one with black, blue, and white ; the other with red, yellow and white. At the north-end of this fret-work, was a square white space, which seemed to be the middle of the east side. Close to the west side of this fret-work, ran another white list, an inch and three-quarters wide, extending the whole length from south to north. Next to this, is a wreath of red, yellow, and white, five inches wide, of the same length with the foregoing ; and joining to this, is another white list, of the same length, but only two inches and a half wide. Then comes a very narrow black list, one inch wide, which seems to run quite round the larger middle square. Along the south and east side of this middle square, is a row of diamonds, or lozenges, twelve inches in diameter, bordered with white, each containing a knot or wreath, crossing at right angles, and alternately composed, one of black, blue, and white ; the other of red, yellow, and white, disposed in shades. The intermediate triangular spaces being each divided into three smaller triangles, the middle one being white, the three outer ones blue. Encompassed by these lozenges and triangles, at this south-east corner, was a small square, two foot on each side, surrounded by a narrow black list, within which is a wreath of red, yellow, and white, in shades, five inches wide, enclosing a small white square, bordered with a double list of black and white, having in its middle a Rosaceous flower like the Lotus, consisting of four large leaves lying uppermost, composed of red, yellow, and white ; and the points of four other, lying underneath, appearing between in such another small square as this. Wherefore the Doctor concludes there are three of these lesser squares on the east side of the church-yard pales. And upon digging a hole in the church-yard, about four foot deep, exactly ranging with the first-described lesser square, and west of it, he found such another square, like to it in all particulars, with the same bordure of lozenges round it ; wherefore he concludes, there are but two of these lesser squares on the south side.

From the circumstances, the Doctor conjectures that the whole pavement was of an oblong rectangular form, extending twenty-one foot and half from north to south, and eighteen and half from east to west ; having at each angle the blue and red wreaths interwoven ; next to them , two of the square white spaces, with the large rose in each, on the north and south side, with an oblong white space between, in the middle of each of these sides. On the east and west sides, are the fret-works, with the ivy leaves repeated on each side the white space, in the middles of each of these sides. Then a red wreath on the east and west sides, and a blue wreath on the north and south sides, of a large square, which forms the middle of the pavement, containing three of the lesser squares in a row on the western side, and three on the eastern side ; all the intermediate spaces being filled up with the lozenges and triangles.

The Minister and Sextan informed the Doctor, that the whole church-yard was paved, at the same depth, and that most of the coffins are placed on these pavements, which are of different sorts in different parts of the church-yard. That in the Chancel, they found a pavement, consisting of red Tessellæ, one inch and half square, and forming the rays of large stars ; that west of the church they were composed of small tiles, two or three inches square ; and that once, two old brass coins were found here. The Doctor revisited this place in 1740, and then saw a grave dug in the church-yard, eastward of the church, and due south of the south-west corner of the grand pavement, where he found part of a pavement composed of nothing but red Tessellæ. an inch and half square.

From the diversity of these pavements, contiguous to each other, and according to the account of the Minister and Sextan, extending near one hundred foot from east to west, and about fifty from north to south, the Doctor imagines, that the grand Mosaic pavement was not merely the Substratum of a General's tent, but that all these pavements rather belonged to the Villa of some Roman Prætor, who was invited, by the delightfulness of the situation ,to make this his summer abode, like that of Weldon in Northamptonshire, discovered in 1738, on the estate of the Right Hon. the Lord Hatton.

The farmer who dwells at West-Mersey-hall informed the Doctor, that several small pieces of brass, such as buckles, hasps, Styli, and the like have been found about his yards and orchards, and shewed him a very curious piece, dug up a few years ago; it is a ring of brass, five inches diameter, with small holes in the border of it, probably to sew a leathern bag to, fastened at top to a swivel, with a loop to pass a belt through. The Doctor takes it to have been the rim of some military pouch, most likely the bag of Fundator, or as slinger, to carry his stones.

On the other side of the Idumanum, on. St. Peter's-Sands, which at low water are uncovered for a league in the sea, the Doctor met with several curious natural productions, such as star-fish, sea-apples, various Fuci and Conservæ ; some as beautifully ramified as those which have formed the Dendrites, or Mocho-stones. He picked up several pieces of Roman Pateræ, some of which are to be seen in the British Museum.

There are some Roman Tumuli. Or Barrows, in the island, and the hill above Manwood Bridge, in the road to Colchester, the ancient Camulodunum, is called Roman-hill.

The earliest, nay, almost all the mention we find of this island in historians, is, that it used to be a sort of shelter for the roving and plundering northern nations.

In the year 994, after King Ælfred had beaten the Danes at Fernham, they fled up the Colne into this island, where the King's army besieged them as long as their provisions lasted. The year following, the remains of several bodies of Danes, and such as had retired into this island, having made incursions into divers parts, took refuge again into Mersey-island ; but not caring, or not being able, to winter in the island, they sailed up the Thames, and towed their ships up the river Lee, as far as Hertford. A block-house, or small fortification, was at the south-east corner of the isle, to defend the place, and the passage up the river Colne ; but now ruinous. The Parliamentarians seized it during the siege of Colchester, in 1648. Its present name is the Block-house stone.

During the Dutch wars in the last century, a camp was kept here to prevent their landing. This island is divided into two parishes ; one called West and the other East Mersey, from the situation with regard to one another.

11. WEST-MERSEY

The largest of the two, was, before the conquest, distinguished into two maners ; the maner of West-Mersey, belonging to the priory of St. Audoen, or Ouen, at Roan in Normandy ; and the maner of Bocking-hall, to the priory of St. Saviour's in Canterbury, to which it was given, with Bocking. The former was subdivided into maners of Peete-hall and Boure-hall.

The Maner of WEST-MERSEY

West Mersey-hall stands near the church.

This maner was given, by King Edward the Confessor, in the year 1046, to the priory of St. Ouen, at Roan in Normandy, as I have observed just now.

That priory was found possessed of it at the time of the survey.

On this estate, near the east end of the church, was founded a priory, by Roger FitzRanulph, dedicated to St. Helene, or St. Peter. It was of the benedictine order, and a cell to the priory of St. Ouen, which held it, with the maner and half-hundred of Winstree, as of the gift of St. Edward, King of England.

The time of its foundation is not mentioned, but it must have been soon after the conquest ; for the donation of King Edward was confirmed by William the Conqueror, and King Henry II. Some singular privileges belonged to this house ; among the rest, that they held these estates in free, pure, and perpetual alms, without any service ; and that, on the death of a Prior, the demesnes were not to be seized into the King's hands, by way of custody of the temporalities.

Upon the wars between England and France, the Priories Alien being suppressed, and their revenues given, by Parliament, to King Henry V. in 1414, that King, 2d of May 1422, granted this priory and maner of Mersey, with appurtenances to Henry Chichley, Archbishop of Canterbury, and his brother William, Archdeacon of the same. The Archbishop settled it on the Collegiate Church, founded by him, at Higham-Ferrers in Northamptonshire, his native place, for eight secular Canons, four Clerks, and six Choristers. But the Abbot and Convent of St. Ouen having, with the license of King Henry IV. and of the Bishop of Enachdun in Ireland, granted this estate to John Doreward, and Isabell his wife, for their lives, the College of Higham did not come into possession of it till after the death of Isabell in 1426. It continued annexed to that church, till the final dissolution of religious houses, when it came to the Crown.

King Henry VIII. in 1542, granted the site of the maner of Westmersey, a maner there called Petehall, the maners of Westmersey, Fingringhoo, and Pete, with appertenances, the half-hundred of Winstree, the rectories of West-Mersey and Fingringhoo, and the advowson of the vicarages there, to Robert D' Acres, and his heirs, to be held, in capite, by the service of the twentieth part of a knight's fee. At the time of his decease, 20th of November 1543, he held the maners of West-Mersey, Pete-hall, and Fyngrynghoo, with appertenances, and the rectories and advowsons of the vicarages of those churches, and 200 messuages, 200 tofts, 2 mills, 200 gardens, 3000 acres of arable, 2000 acres of meadow, 2000 of pasture, 500 of wood, 100l. rent, with appertenances, in West-Mersey, Pethall, and Fyngryngho ; and left George, his son, ten years old.

King Edward VI. granted them, 1st of June 1553, to Thomas Lord Darcy, of Chiche, and his heirs. They all passed from him, as the maner of Fingringho, to John Lord Darcy, and to Thomas Lord Darcy, created, 5th of July 1621, Viscount Colchester ; and 1st of November 1626, Earl Rivers. He died 21st of February 1639, without issue male surviving.--- Elizabeth Countess Rivers, widow of Sir Thomas Savage, Knight and Bart. was his eldest daughter and coheir. Her father Thomas Lord Darcy, Earl Rivers, having left her his executrix, she sold this estate of West Mersey-hall, or priory, 4th Oct. 1649, to John Kidby, M. A. Rector of Shenfield. He died in 1694 ; and having married Anne, daughter of Edmund Plumb, of Hawkdon in Suffolk, had by her, among other children, Edmund, his second son, Rector of East and West-Hanningfield in Essex, who died in 1718. By Anne his wife, daughter of Thos. Selyard, of Penshurst in Kent, Esq. son and heir of Sir Thomas Selyard, Knight, he had John Kidby, M.D. of Balliol-college in Oxford ; who leaving no issue, and a will he had made not being legal, it came to his uncle's daughter, and heir at law, Miss Kidby.

The quit-rents of this maner are 28l. per annum ; formerly 32l.

The Maner of PEETE

Is not confined to the island, but extends beyond Pyefleete, upon part of the continent ; and some of its demesnes lie in the parish of Peldon.

Peete-hall, the mansion-house, is about a mile and a half north out of the island, near Peete-bridge.

The causeway leading hence to Colchester, is from Peete-bridge, by Peete-Tye, cross Aberton-green, over Manwood-bridge, by the side of Blackheath, and enters the town on the east of St. John's-abbey.

Le Peete, that is, this estate, is mentioned by name in Edward the Confessor's grant to St. Ouen's priory: and was granted, in 1542, by the name of the maner of Pete-hall,, to Robert Dacres, with the maners of Fingringho and West-Mersey, as above-mentioned.

King Edward VI. 1st of June 1553, granted it, with the rest, to Thomas Lord Darcy, and it passed, with them, to his successors, Lord Darcy; Thomas Lord Darcy, Viscount Colchester and Earl Rivers. His eldest daughter, Elizabeth, Lady Savage and Countess Rivers, sold this, with Fringringho-hall, 24th of October 1648, to George Frere, merchant ; who bequeathed it to his nephew, John Goddard, Gent. His son, John Goddard, left a son, John, who married Elizabeth, daughter of Francis Gardiner, Mayor of Norwich, in 1685. A son that he had by her, dying an infant, he devised this estate to be sold, after his wife's decease, for payment of his debts ; giving the remainder to Mr Thomas Bayles, of Colchester.

The latter sold it, in 1728, to Mr. Jacob Browne.

The Maner of BOWER-HALL

The mansion-house is about a mile and a half north-east from the church.

This belonged, as well as the former, to St. Ouen's priory and the college of Higham-Ferrers.

It appears, by Sir Thomas Montgomery's will, 28th of July 1487, that he rten held the maner of Bowre-hall in Mersey

John Abell, who died 10th of January 1524, held, of the Warden of the said college, the maner of Bower-hall ; lands and tenements called Merchants, and other lands and hereditaments, in West-Mersey, Peldon, Leyer de la Hay and Bretton and Salcott.

At the dissolution, it came to the Crown. In 1558, King Philip and Queen Mary granted it to Sir Thomas White, being parcel of the possessions of Thomas Bacon and Anne his wife. Queen Elizabeth, the 1st of August 1599, granted it, with the maner of Brookhall in Tolleshunt-Knights, to John Spencer, Esq. Alderman of London, who died possessed of it 3d of March 1609.

Elizabeth, his only daughter and heir, brought it to her husband, William Lord Compton, afterwards Earl of Northampton. He kept his first Court here 14th of Oct. 1617. Spencer was their eldest son and heir. He sold his estate to Ralph Fox, of London, merchant-taylor, and he kept a Court here 12th of Oct. 1627. He was succeeded, as in Brooke-hall, by Daniel ; James, who died 18th of May 1710 ; and John Fox.

It now belongs to Marcellus Osborne, Esq. who hath married Mrs. Fox.

The Maner of BOCKING HALL

The mansion-house stands about two miles east-north-east of the church.

This maner, or estate, was originally part of the possessions of two noble Saxons, Ætheric and Leofuuine, who gave it, in the year 1006, to the church and priory of St. Saviour in Canterbury, with the lordship of Bocking in this county, for the maintenance of the Monks. Being reckoned a member of Bocking maner, it hencetook the name of Bockung-hall.

The priory of St. Saviour, then dedicated to the H. Trinity, and thence so called, had this estate at the time of the survey. It continued in that church till the 20th of March 1539 ; when the priory and convent of Christ's Church, for it was then so styled, surrendered their revenues to the Crown.

King Henry VIII. Upon his settling a Dean and Canons in the Cathedral Church of Canterbury, instead of the Monks, 26th of May 1542, made this maner of Bocking, in Marsey, part of their endowment. But, the 23d of November 1545, they assigned it, with others, to the King, in discharge of 200l. a year, which they were obliged to pay for the maintenance of scholars at Oxford and Cambridge. (See in the other volume, p.390).

It continued in the Crown till the 1st of August 1599, when Queen Elizabeth granted the maner of Bocking, with appertenances, and the scite of the same ; and marsh-lands, 18 acres, called Le Rey ; and 20 acres more, parcel of this maner, to John Spencer, Esq. to hold of the Queen, of the honor of Hampton-court, by the 20th part of a knight's-fee, and not in capite. He held it at the time of his decease, the 3rd of March 1609, with the maners of Bowrehall and Brookhall.

Elizabeth, his only daughter and heir, brought it, in marriage, to her husband, William Lord Compton, afterwards Earl of Northampton.

John Convers, had it some years ago: And afterwards, Arthur Winsley, of Colchester, Esq. who made it part of the endowment of his hospital, in the parish of Saint Botolph's in Colchester.

Besides the estates above-mentioned, there are others in this parish, belonging to George Wegg and James Round, Esqrs. and to Mr. Wim. Smythies, Mr. Thos. Wiltshire, Joseph Wayland, James Abbot, Edward Kempton, William Weaver, Edward Webb, the widows Wayland and Wakelin ; two called Maydors and Northcourts ; and the Barrow-hill farm, so called because there is a Tumulus near it ; this and another belong to Mr. John Hawes.

There is a dry passage into the island at low-water, every eight hours, over a beach, or causeway, called the Strode, or Stronde, signifying a bank or road on the side of a creek, the sea, or a river. For the support and repair of this strode, there is an estate in the parish, of about 30 acres, more or less, called the Stroud-lands, and Churchfields. There was formerly elected a Strode-keeper ; and, in King Henry the Eighth's time, there was a church house, now down and forgotten. These lands are holden of the maner of West-Mersey-hall, by feoffees, in trust, for repair of the strode and church ; all is put into one bag ; whether disposed of according to the will of the donor, is uncertain.

Some lands in this parish were formerly holden of the honor of Bologne ; namely by William de la Hay and Ingelram de Blendett, in 1210 ; and by John de Blendett, in 1256.

Here is a fair on Whitsun-Tuesday.

The CHURCH, dedicated to St. Peter and St. Paul, stands near the south-west corner of the island. It consists of a body and a south aisle, but the chancel is only of one pace ; the whole tiled. In the towers are five bells.

The church went along with the maner to St. Ouen's priory, and the great tithes were appropriated to their cell here, and a vicarage ordained, to which they presented till suppressed. It was afterwards in the gift of the Master and Fellows of Higham-Ferrers College, from 1435 to 1525 ; and then came, with the maner, into the Darcy family ; and since, into that of Kidby.

The parish is rated to the land-tax at 858l. 1s. 0d.
The vicarage was holden many years by sequestration.

Nathanael Cooke, B.A. 11th September 1708, ... Edmund Kidby, Clerk.
John Brownsmith, B.A. 7th March 1731, upon Cooke's d. ... )
Stephen Aldrich, B.A. 20th April 1733, upon Brownsmith's d.) John Kidby, Esq.
Charles Land. B.A. 2d May 1738, upon Aldrich's cess. ... )
Joseph Brockwell, M.A. 13 July 1748, upon Lind's cess. ... )

12. EAST-MERSEY

Takes up the eastern part of the island.

In Edward the Confessor's reign, it belonged to Robert, son of Wimarce. The great Suene of Essex, his son, held it of the survey. His grandson, Henry de Essex, forfeiting his estates, on account of his cowardice, in King Henry the Second's reign, this was granted, probably, to the same person that had Stanford-Rivers.

For in 1210 and 1211, Richard de Rivers held Mersey, of the honor of Haganet ; it being let to him by the King, and worth 15l. a year.

Whether he came into this, by marriage of Maud de Lucy, as he did into Stanford, which bears his name, nothing shews. William de Rivers had free warren in Martsey, in 1267. At the time of his decease, in 1276, he held the maner of Est-Mersey, of the Kings, in capite, of the honor of Reylie, by the service of half a knight's-fee. John his son and heir, followed him two years after, departing this life in 1278, and left William his son, under age, and in wardship to Giles de Fenes. John, son and heir of this William, gave King Edward I. in 1302 or 1303, fifty shillings, for his relief for this half knight's- fee, which his father, William, had holden of the King, in capite, in Meresly. Sir Richard de Rivers was possessed of this estate in 1325. At the time of his decease, in 1332, he is styled Lord of Est-Mersey, and husband of Alice de Luckambroc. He left Robert his son and heir.

In 1390, Alice, daughter of Alianor Mary, and wife of Edmund de la More, released to Sir Robert de Swynborne, and Ralph Chamberlain, and their heirs, all her right in the maner of Est-Mersey. This Sir Robert Swynborne married Joane, daughter and heir of Sir John Boutetort, with whom he got a considerable fortune. By her he had five sons, who died without issue ; and two daughters ; Alice, wife of John Helion ; and
  Margery, wife of Nicholas Berners, Esquire. These last had an only daughter,

Catharine, married to Sir William Fynderne ; who, in her right, became possessed of this and other great estates. He died 15th of May 1462 ; as did his son, Sir William, 18th of December 1515 ; and Thomas Fynderne, Esq. their son, 10th of March 1523. The latter leaving no issue, the estates descended to

Anne, wife of Sir Roger Wentworth, of Gosfield. She was daughter and heir of Humfrey Tyrell, of Warley, Esq. by Isabell daughter and heir of John Helion, Esquire ; whose mother, Alice, was one of the sisters and coheirs of Thomas, son of Robert Swynborne, above-mentioned. Sir Roger, dying 9th of August 1539, was succeeded by his eldest son, John Wentworth, Esq. who, 1st of July 1544, exchanged this maner with King Henry VIII. for that of Wethersfield, as appears by an Inespeximus, in 1615.

The estate belonged, in the last century, to one Colonel Edward Bellamie, citizen and fishmonger, who died 28th of August 1656, aged 59, and was buried in this church, with an inscription. Of one of his successors, it was purchased by

Sir Ralph Creffeild, of Colchester, Knight, who departed this life 22nd of June 1732, and was succeeded by his grandson, Peter Creffeild, Esq. He died in November 1748, Thamar, his only daughter and heir, brought it, in marriage, to

James Round, Esq. eldest son of William Round, of Birch-hall, Esq. He hath also here, Bromans, Paulfreemans, Block-house, and Ivy-house.

The Maner of REUSHALL

Otherwise Reveshall, or Rusall, and North-lands, was visibly so named from the Rivers family, part of whose inheritance it was.

The mansion-house is above a mile north from the church.

We find no account of this maner till 1368, when William, son and heir of Hugh Groos, is recorded to hold a moiety of the maner of Reues-halle, in Merseye, of the Lionell de Bradenham, by the service of the fourth part of a knight's-fee. He was also lord of the maners of Little-Bentley, New-hall in Tendring, and Hamstall in Wikes. His moiety of the maner here was settled by his brother, Sir John Groos, in trustees, for maintenance of a chantry Priest in the new chapel of Bentley church, who was to have 8l. 3s. and two hundred fagots, from the three maners above-mentioned. The lands apportioned for that purpose, were the moiety of 1 messuage, 240 acres of arable, 130 acres of marsh, and 30s. rent, in Est-Merseye, holden of Sir John Sutton, by knight's service. This moiety, according to the same grant, was conveyed to the abbey of St. Osith, who were to keep his obit, and, I presume, pay the chantry money.

The other moiety was granted to the abbey, by Alice, late wife of Thos. Shepey, daughter and heir of Walter de Wotton (see under Little Bentley)

Sir Thomas Audeley, Lord Chancellor, had a grant of this estate at the suppression : for, at the time of his decease, 8th of May 1544, he held the maner of North-lands, in East-Mersey. He gave it to his brother, Thomas Audeley, of Bere-church, Esq. who died 31st of December 1572, possessed of the maner of North-lands, alias Reveshall, in East-Mersey. ---Robert, his son and heir, succeeded him, and had for successors, Sir Henry Audeley, Knight ; Thomas and Henry Audeley, Esquires.

The latter wasting his estates, this came into the possession of James Smyth, Esq. From him it hath descended to Sir Robert Smyth, of Bere-church, Bart.

This estate contains about 101 acres.

There is another estate, or capital farm, in the southern part of this parish, called Rusalls.

Sir William Capell who died the 6th of September 1515, held the maner of Rusalls, with appertenances, of Sir William Findern, as of his maner of Est-Mersey .---Sir Giles Capell was his son and heir.

In 1558, Queen Mary and King Philip granted this maner, late parcel of the possessions of Sir Giles Capell, to Sir Thomas White.

Sir John Spencer, who died 3d of March 1609, is recorded to have held this maner of Rewsalls and East-Mersey, with the site of the same, and 1 messuage, 1 garden, 1 orchard, 300 acres of arable, 60 of meadow, 100 of pasture, 40 of wood, and 100 of furze and heath, with appertenances, in Rewsall and East-Mersey, of the King, as of his maner of East-Greenwich, in free and common socage. Elizabeth, his daughter, was married to Wm. Lord Compton.

Other estates in this parish, are, North-house and Martels, Mr. William Smythies's .--- Nashes, Bockets, Frankland, and Eastland, George Wayland's .---Milners and Nevards, John Damyon's .--- Cambridges, Brookland, Grey-goose, Nashes, Babells, Jollys, Burrows, Bulls, and Gores, Ezek. Blyth's .--- Mitchells, Mr. Spurden's .--- Holmes-House, Mr. Stone's .--- Wards, John Cook's .--- Alphry's Rynotts, Browns, and Chipswell, Edward Kempston's .--- Wareland and Dewzies, George Pudney's --- Marredens, Clarks, Edwards, and Emmotts, Robert Durrell's .--- Pannells and Stanes, Mr. Bennett's .--- Batemans and Turks, Mr. Ward's .--- Knights, Springholds, North-hide, and Parnells, Mr. Wilby's.

The CHURCH, dedicated to St. Edmunds, consists of a body and a north aisle, and the chancel hath a north chapel, all tiled. The tower, of stone, is a sea mark, and formerly supported a beacon. In it are now only two bells ; but in times past, five.

This rectory was given, by Robert, son of Suene, to the priory of Prittlewell, founded by him, and continued in the gift of the Prior and Monks, till the suppression of monasteries, except for some years during the wars between King Edward III. And France. At the general dissolution of religious houses, the advowson fell to the Crown, and hath remained in it ever since.

The parsonage is a maner, and keeps Court-lete and Court-baron, having eight copy-holders, who pay 21s. 7d.a year.

The parish is rated to the land-tax of 588l. 2s. 0d.

Richard Holland, M.A. 24th May 1703, upon Le Goss'd. )
Henry Sykes, M.A. 14th November 1706, upon Holland's d. ) Queen Anne.
Gamaliel Lagden, B.A. 21st August 1710, upon Sykes's cess. )
Naphtali Hussey, Clerk, 27th January 1736-7, upon Lagden's d. King George II

Morant gives extensive quotes and references to his sources, not transcribed here. Copies of The History and Antiquities of Essex are available at the Essex Records Office and the Local Studies room at Colchester Library. Mersea Museum has photographs of these pages - see Related Images below and
Morant History and Antiquities of Essex .

Transcribed by Peter Godfrey August 2022

AuthorPhilip Morant
Keywordstessellae, west mersea hall, manor, rewsalls, reeves hall, north farm
Published1768
SourceMersea Museum
IDMSY_MOR
Related Images:
 Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 424
 Salcot Virley contd. For transcription see <a href=mmresdetails.php?col=MM&ba=cke&typ=ID&pid=SAL_MOR&rhit=1 ID=1>SAL_MOR </a>
 Mersea. For transcription see <a href=mmresdetails.php?col=MM&ba=cke&typ=ID&pid=MSY_MOR&rhit=2 ID=2>MSY_MOR </a>  MTE_424
ImageID:   MTE_424
Title: Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 424
Salcot Virley contd. For transcription see SAL_MOR
Mersea. For transcription see MSY_MOR
Date:1768
Source:Mersea Museum
 Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 425
 Mersey [Mersea] contd. For transcription see <a href=mmresdetails.php?col=MM&ba=cke&typ=ID&pid=MSY_MOR&rhit=1 ID=1>MSY_MOR </a>  MTE_425
ImageID:   MTE_425
Title: Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 425
Mersey [Mersea] contd. For transcription see MSY_MOR
Date:1768
Source:Mersea Museum
 Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 426
 Mersey [Mersea] contd.
 West Mersea For transcription see <a href=mmresdetails.php?col=MM&ba=cke&typ=ID&pid=MSY_MOR&rhit=1 ID=1>MSY_MOR </a>  MTE_426
ImageID:   MTE_426
Title: Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 426
Mersey [Mersea] contd.
West Mersea For transcription see MSY_MOR
Date:1768
Source:Mersea Museum
 Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page
 West Mersey [Mersea] contd. For transcription see <a href=mmresdetails.php?col=MM&ba=cke&typ=ID&pid=MSY_MOR&rhit=1 ID=1>MSY_MOR </a>  MTE_427
ImageID:   MTE_427
Title: Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page
West Mersey [Mersea] contd. For transcription see MSY_MOR
Date:1768
Source:Mersea Museum
 Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 428
 West Mersey [Mersea] contd. 
 East Mersea
 For transcription see <a href=mmresdetails.php?col=MM&ba=cke&typ=ID&pid=MSY_MOR&rhit=1 ID=1>MSY_MOR </a>  MTE_428
ImageID:   MTE_428
Title: Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 428
West Mersey [Mersea] contd.
East Mersea
For transcription see MSY_MOR
Date:1768
Source:Mersea Museum
 Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 429
 East Mersea contd. For transcription see <a href=mmresdetails.php?col=MM&ba=cke&typ=ID&pid=MSY_MOR&rhit=1 ID=1>MSY_MOR </a>  MTE_429
ImageID:   MTE_429
Title: Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 429
East Mersea contd. For transcription see MSY_MOR
Date:1768
Source:Mersea Museum
 Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 430
 East Mersea contd. For transcription see <a href=mmresdetails.php?col=MM&ba=cke&typ=ID&pid=MSY_MOR&rhit=1 ID=1>MSY_MOR </a>  MTE_430
ImageID:   MTE_430
Title: Morant History and Antiquities of Essex Volume 1 1816 reprint page 430
East Mersea contd. For transcription see MSY_MOR
Date:1768
Source:Mersea Museum