"ABDICK and BULSTONE HUNDRED, in the southern part of Somersetshire, bounded on the N. by North Carry hundred, part of Somerton hundred, and Pitney hundred;
on the E. by East Petherton and South Kingsbury hundreds; on the S. by part of South Petherton hundred and part of East Kingsbury hundred;
and on the W. by Taunton and Taunton Dean hundreds It contains the parishes of Ashill, Beer-
"ANDERSFIELD HUNDRED, in the county of Somerset, is bounded on the N. by Cannington hundred, on the E. by Whitley hundred, on the S. by North Petherton hundred, and on the W. by Taunton Dean hundred; and comprises the parishes of Broomfield, Creech St. Michael, Enmore, Goathurst, and Lyng, with parts of Durleigh, Chilton Trinity, and North Petherton.
The area of the hundred is about 11,000 acres."
"BATH FORUM HUNDRED, one of the 40 hundreds or subdivisions of the county of Somerset, situated in the eastern division of the county, and bounded on the N. by the county of Gloucester, on the E. by Wiltshire, on the S. by the hundred of Wellow, and on the W. by the hundred of Keynsham. It contains the city of Bath, and the parishes of Batheaston, Bathford, Bathwick, St. Katherine Freshford, Kelston, Langridge, Lyncombe and Widcombe, Moncktoncombe, North Stoke, South Stoke, Swainswick, Weston, and Woolley. It comprises an area, exclusive of the city, of about 15,600 acres."
"BEMPSTONE HUNDRED, one of the 40 hundreds or subdivisions of the county of Somerset, situated in the eastern division, and bounded on the N. by the hundred of Winterstoke, on the E. by the hundred of Wells Forum, on the S. by the hundreds of Glaston-
on the W. by the Bristol Channel, and on the N.W. by part of the hundred of Brent-
The hundred spreads over an area of about 18,200 acres."
"BRUTON HUNDRED, one of the 40 hundreds or subdivisions of the county of Somerset, situated in the eastern parliamentary division of the county, and hounded on the N. by the hundreds of Wells-
"CANNINGTON HUNDRED, one of the 40 hundreds or subdivisions of the county of Somerset, situated in the western parliamentary division of the county, and bounded on the N. by the Bristol Channel; on the E. by the hundred of North Petherton; on the S. by the hundreds of Andersfield and Taunton Dean; and on the W. by the hundred of Williton. It contains the parishes of Aisholt, Cannington, Charlinch, Fiddington, Otterhampton, Spaxton, Stockland-
"CARHAMPTON HUNDRED, one of the 40 hundreds or subdivisions of the county of Somerset, situated in the western parliamentary division of the county, and bounded on the N. by the sea, on the E. and S. by the hundred of Williton Freemanors, and on the W. by Devonshire. It contains the parishes of Carhampton, Culbone, Cutcombe, Dunster, Exford, Luckham, Luxborough, Minehead, Care, Porlock, Selworthy, Stoke-
"CATSASH HUNDRED, one of the 40 hundreds or subdivisions of the county of Somerset, situated in the east parliamentary division of the county, and bounded on the N. by the hundreds of Whitley, Glaston Twelve Hides, and Whitestone; on the E. by the hundred of Bruton; on the S. by the hundred of Horethorn; and on the W. by the hundred of Somerton. It contains the parishes of Alford, Almsford, Babcary, North Barrow, South Barrow, St. David Barton, North Cadbury, South Cadbury, Castle-
"CHEW, a hundred in the north-
"CHEWTON, a hundred in the N.E. portion of county Somerset; it contains the parishes of Brockley, Cameley, Chewton-
"CREWKERNE, a hundred in the S. part of the county of Somerset, contains the parishes of St. George Hinton, Crewkerne, Misterton, Merriott, Wayford, and Seaborough, comprising 13,260 acres. Crewkerne gives name to a deanery in the archdeaconry of Taunton, and diocese of Bath and Wells."
"DUNKERRY BEACON, a hill in the county of Somerset, 7 miles S.W. of Dunster. It rises to the height of 1,700 feet, and commands a fine view of the surrounding country."
"EXE, a river rising in Exmoor Forest on the borders of counties Somerset and Devon. It was anciently called the Isca or Isaca, and after passing Exeter, falls into the Channel by a wide mouth at Exmouth Bar."
"FROME HUNDRED, one of the 20 hundreds or subdivisions of county Somerset, situated in the eastern part of the county, and bounded on the N. by the hundred of Wellow, on the E. by the county of Wilts, on the S. by the hundred of Norton Ferrers, and on the W. by the hundred of Kelmersdon. It comprises the borough of Frome-
"HAMPTON, a hundred or liberty in county Somerset, contains the parishes of Bathampton, Charlcombe, and Claverton; comprising an area of 2,610 acres."
"HARTCLIFFE, a hundred in the county Somerset, contains the parishes of Long Ashton, Backwell, Barrow-
"HORETHORNE, a hundred in county Somerset, contains the parishes of Abbas Combe, Charlton Horethorne, North Cheriton, Corton-
"HOUNDSBOROUGH, (and Barwick and Coker) a hundred in county Somerset, contains the parishes of Barwick, Chilton Cantelo, Chinnock (East, Middle, and West), Chiselborough, Closeworth, Coker, Hardington-
"HUNTSPILL AND PURITON, a hundred in county Somerset, contains the parishes of Huntspill and Puriton, comprising about 6,800 acres."
"KEYNSHAM, a hundred in county Somerset. It contains the parishes of Brislington, Burnett, Chelwood, Compton-
"KILMERSDON, a hundred in the county Somerset, contains the parishes of Ashwick, Babington, Buckland-
"KINGSBURY, a hundred in county Somerset, in six detached portions. It contains the parishes of Chard, Combe, Huish-
"LANSDOWN HILL, near Prior Park, county Somerset, 2 miles S.E. of Bath. It rises to the height of 800 feet, and commands a view of 40 miles. On its summit are remains of a Saxon camp, also Beckford's Tower, and a column to Sir Bevill Granville, who fell in a battle fought here in 1643, in which Waller was defeated. On its slopes are a range of houses, St. Stephen's church, and a cemetery. The Petty family take from this place the title of marquis."
"MENDIP HILLS, a range of rugged heights in the northern division of county Somerset, between the rivers Axe and Yeo, and stretching from near Shepton Mallet to the coast. The hills, which consist chiefly of mountain limestone and Old Red sandstone, are broken with caverns and chasms, and were once covered with a dense wood. They are rich in lead, iron, calamine, manganese, red ochre, and other minerals.
Professor Ansted has recently (1862) discovered, at St. Cuthbert's, in the Mendip Hills, about three miles from Wells,
a deposit of lead-
"MERSTON, a deanery in county Somerset. See Marston Magna."
"MILVERTON, a hundred in county Somerset, contains the parishes of Ashbrittle, Bathealton, Kittisford, Langford-
"NORTH CURRY, a hundred in the county of Somerset; contains the parishes of West Hatch, St. Gregory Stoke, North Curry, Thurlbear, and Thorne Falcon, comprising 12,940 acres.
"NORTH PETHERTON, a hundred in the county of Somerset, contains the town of Bridgwater and the parishes of Bawdrip, Chedzoy, Chilton Trinity, Durston, St. Michael Church, Pawlett, North Petherton, Thurloxton, and part of Wembdon, comprising an area of 23,150 acres, exclusive of Bridgwater.
"PARRET, (or Perrott), a river rising on the borders of Dorsetshire and Somersetshire, and falling into the Bristol Channel at Stert Point, near Burnham lighthouse. It is navigable to its junction with the Yeo.
"PITNEY, a hundred in the county of Somerset, contains the parishes of Langport-
"PORTBURY, a hundred in the county of Somerset, contains the parish of Abbots Leigh, Bourton, Glapton, Clevedon, Easton-
"RALEIGH'S CROSS, a meet for the West Somerset hounds, county Somerset, 4 miles N.W. of Wiveliscombe."
"SEDGMOOR, an extensive marshy tract in the hundred of Whitley, county Somerset, 5 miles S.E. of Bridgwater. The Duke of Monmouth was defeated here in 1685. It is celebrated in the scientific world as the spot where a base line of the Trigonometrical Survey was measured."
"SELWOOD, an extensive forest on the borders of counties Wilts and Somerset, between Westbury and Frome. It was called by the Britons Coed-
"SOMERTON, a hundred in county Somerset, contains the parishes of Aller, West Carmel, Charlton-
"SOUTH PETHERTON, a hundred in the county of Somerset, contains the parishes of Barrington, Chaffcombe, Chillington, Cricket St. Thomas, Cudworth, Dinnington, Dowlish Wake, St. Giles Knowle, Lopen, Niden, South Petherton, Seavington, Shepton-
"STERT, (or Start), an islet in Bridgwater Bay, county Somerset, 7½ miles N. of Bridgwater, at the mouth of the river Parret.
"STONE, a hundred in the county of Somerset, contains the parishes of Ashington, Brimpton, Chilthorne, Domer, Limington, Lufton, Mudford, Preston, Plucknett, and Yeovil, comprising an area of 10,720 acres."
"TAUNTON, (or Taunton Dean), a hundred of county Somerset, contains the town of Taunton and the parishes of Angersleigh,
"TINTINHULL, a hundred, county Somerset, contains the parishes of Ilchester, Kingston, Montacute, Northover, Stoke-
"TONE, a river of county Somerset, rises near Brompton Ralph, and joins the Parret at Borough Bridge."
"WELLOW, a hundred in county Somerset, contains the parishes of Camerton, Charterhouse-
"WHITLEY, a hundred in county Somerset, contains the parishes of Ashcott, Blackford, Butleigh, Compton-
"WHITSTONE, a hundred, county Somerset, contains the parishes of Batcombe, Croscombe, Ditcheat, Doulting, Downhead, Hornblotton, Lamyatt, East Pennard, Pilton, Pylle, Shepton-
"WILLITON AND FREEMANNERS, a hundred in the N.W. division of county Somerset, contains the small market town of Watchet, and the parishes of Bicknoller, Brompton Ralph, Brompton Regis, Brushford, Chipstable, Clatworthy, Old Cleeve, Crowcombe, St. Decuman, where is the workhouse, Dodington, Dulverton, Elworthy, Exmoor Forest, Exton, Halse, Hawkridge, Huish Champflower, Kilton, Kilve, Lilstock, Monksilver, Nettlecombe, East and West Quantoxhead, Raddington, Sampford Brett, Skilgate, Stogumber, Nether Stowey, Upton, Winsford, and Withypoole; comprising 114,870 acres."
"WINTERSTOKE, a hundred in the northern division of county Somerset, contains the parishes of Axbridge, Badgworth, Banwell, Blagdon, Bledon, Charterhouse-
When, after a long and obstinate conflict the Saxons finally conquered the
and it is more than probable that the forts and strongholds of the Dumnonian chiefs and princes would, like the ports, harbours and forests of Dumnonia, pass direct into the keeping of the Wessex kings and so , in time , become ancient demesne of the Crown Vetus dominicum Coronae.
Such, indeed , seems to have been the fate of the domain of East and West Camel which , for centuries , figures as part and parcel of the “ Eorinsecus ” or outer Hundred of Somerton, the erstwhile capital of the “ Sea moor settlers.”
At Domesday, Queen’s Camel, (as East Camel appears to have been named), was in the hands of Queen Gytha, Harold’s wife,
like Puriton (Peritona), the port on the Parret, leading to the Poldens and Glaston.
This territorial nexus, linking the reputed stronghold of King Arthur with the Saxon Royal demesne and so with Domesday may have a real historical value.
If King Arthur was really slain in this part of Somerset, the story of his conveyance to Glaston across the flooded moors and meres, and perhaps by the Brue or Parret river would be obvious and simple.
The coast voyage from Camlan in Cornwall was both long and arduous for a wounded man.
In Somerset near Glaston the boat used might have been one of the boats called “ bargiae ” of the great Abbey itself— constructed for river navigation.
In Cornwall and in the neighbourhood of the famous Castle of Tintagel and its primitive harbour of Bude, (useful for Severn trows or light-
The “ Hundred of Stratton ” in Triconshire, i.e. Cornwall, appears in King Alfred’s will as a Royal Saxon holding bequeathed by Ethel-
This would take us back to a.d. 800, nearly three hundred years before Domesday. That portion of Cornwall which included Tintagel the reputed birthplace of “ Rex Arturus ” descended to “ Rex Aelfredus ” and constitutes now what is probably the oldest “ membrum ” of the history in Somerset is unbroken and impressive.
Wookey Hole and Cheddar and the rock shelters in ebbor and the other gorges and cliff-
these relics were left in places like the Bridged-
Then, about seven hundred b.c. the Bronze Age gave us a civilisation which flourished in the Lake Villages near present-
They became a trading centre for northern Europe, safe in the fastness of their sea-
Other Bronze and Iron Age Celts have left their signatures on the landscape itself,
in the great tumuli of Priddy Nine Barrows and the ramparts of earthworks like Dolebury,
Cadbury (near Tickenham) and Cadbury,
the reputed Camelot (near Sparkford), Maesbury, Worlebury and Castle Neroche.
On remote Exmoor they left us Cow Castle, near Simonsbath, and Mounsey and Brewer’s Castles beside the Barle at dulverton. They left us “castles” and storage pits at Penselwood and
the Caractacus Stone above Winsford.
They left the well-
There is a chambered Long Barrow at Stoney Littleton, near Bath and Standing Stones at Orchardleigh near Frome.
These ancient cultures were abandoned or destroyed by pressure from other tribes, possibly the Belgae themselves fleeing before the power of Rome.
When Somerset itself became part of the Roman Empire, the lake villages were abandoned and forgotten until our own time.
The varied stones, which are the “bones” of a county, have given Somerset its contrasts in both scenery and architecture.
Exmoor and Brendon gives us hard Devonian sandstone and slate, and the heavy, solid, low buildings to withstand exposure to westerly winds and sometimes heavy rainfall.
Around Taunton and in the Quantock area, the soil is a rich Devonian red, and many of the cottages and churches (Wiveliscombe, Milverton, Bishop’s Lydeard, of a warm pink sandstone.
The Somerton area near the fossil-
The gentle Poldens which undulate out into Sedgemoor country south of Street, reveal cream and pink strata above Compton Dundon, where alabaster is quarried. Doulting stone, from the south-
The carboniferous limestone of Mendip besides the caves and gorges, well known to the tourist, gives rise to the collieries of Pensford, Mid-
is also rich in lead, copper, manganese, mica, quartz and many other minerals.
The golden Ham stone of the Yeovil area,
THIS MAP SHOWS:
1. Cynuit Castle at the mouth of the Parret.
2. “ Viking’s pill” at the end of the Poldens.
3. Athelney Island and Taunton.
4. King Alfred s march from Egbright’s Stone to Eggarley.
5. King Alfred’s march from Eggarley to the Poldens.
6. The “ Herepath ” from Glaston to the Poldens, so-
7. The Battle-
8. The Danish Port at Downend below the Poldens.
9. The Forts in the Valley of the Parret and neighbourhood.
10. The “ Herepaths ” and roads—socalled.
11. The Fossway from Bath to Ilchester and Exeter.
12. The Great Herepath from Bristol to Cynuit.
13. The Great Herepath from Cynuit to Exmoor.
14. Countisbury.Porlock and Watchet.
15. The Quantocks and Brendons.
16. “ Portway Lane ” from Watchet to Cynuit.
17. The extent of Dumnonia up to the Parret mouth.
18. ' “ Demetica Regio” in South Wales.
19. “ Gwentonia Civitas ” up to the Severn.
20. Forest of Dene, i.e. Danica silva.