A Transcript of
Sisson's Sketch of Wakefield Church.
Mr. John Hartley.
Mr. Thomas Shaw.
Parish Clerk & Registrar,
The Church Yard, though it must originally nave been very large, when compared with the size of the town, soon became insufficient for the increasing population, and accordingly other places of sepulture were obliged to be provided. Besides these, during the time of the plague, it appears that many of its victims were interred near the places where they died, this was particularly the case in the neighbourhood of Potovens, a small hamlet about two miles from the town. Here was a Well to which the people flocked, under the hope of experiencing some healing properties of its water, which tradition had handed down. Many had their graves near this well, where remains have been found within a few years.- There was also a burial ground, in or near what is called the Fall Ings over the Bridge, and notices of burials at this place are to be found in the Parish Register. Several non-conformists were buried in a piece of ground which is now a garden, attached to the house of Mr. Spicer in Kirkgate, and at the time when this house was built by the late Francis Maude, Esq. were found several tombstones, recording the names of those, whose bodies were there deposited. That piece of ground which adjoins the Rectory and Vicarage Houses, had for several years been used, through permission of the different Vicars, as an additional Burial Ground, and on the 22nd of February, 1815, this ground, called the Vicarage Croft, was conveyed by the Rev. S. Sharp, the present Vicar, to certain Trustees for the use of the Inhabitants, in exchange for 2A. 3R. 30P. of land on Wakefield Outwood, in the Graveship of Alverthorpe, near Alverthorpe Lane End, and for the Tithes thereof, for the use of himself and successors. The ground was consecrated by the Archbishop of York, and is now commonly used as a place of interment.
In the Church Yard and in the Vicarage Croft there are numerous inscriptions, from which the following have been extracted
Here lyeth the Body
of Edward Fairbanek of
who departed this life
the 12 day of December, l658.*
* This is on a stone near the East End of the Church, and is supposed to be the oldest inscription here.
Not far from the above is the following, in memory of the pious divine, whose monument in the interior was noticed in a preceding page:- Religio Pax.
Here lieth the body
of the truly pious and worthy
The Rev. Samuel Disney
who departed this life
(in hopes of a blessed Resurrection,
through the merits of Christ,)
the 22nd day of July, 1741,
Universally and deservedly lamented.
What he was
The last great day will shew,
When every private virtue will receive
a public reward.
IN THE VICARAGE CROFT.
Here lie the remains
of Richard & Harrison Linnecar,
The first died Jan. 6th, aged 2 years,
The other April 18th, 1789, aged 3 years.
My lovely Prattlers, are you gone, Alas! so soon resigned your breath?
O God, thy holy will be done,
Thou gavest them life, thou gavest them death.
Here lieth the Remains of
Henry Andrews, Esq.
who died April 14th, 1811,
aged 55 years.
Children of the above Henry Andrews, Esq.
and Martha his wife.
Also in Memory of their Son,
George Mottram Andrews, Esq.
Captain in his Majesty's 53rd Regiment of Foot,
who died at Up Park Camp Jamaica,
Sept. 17th, 1805, aged 20 years.
To the memory of
Thomas Amory, Esq.
who departed this life,
the 25th Nov. 1788,
aged 97 years.*
* Mr. Amory was a man of very eccentric habits, as his writings will testify: these are - Memoirs containing the lives of several ladies of Great Britain; and The Life of John Buncle, Esq. In both these works, which are as remarkable as the character of their author, he endeavoured to inculcate Arian principles. He also wrote two letters on "The natural proofs of a future state," which appeared in the Theological Repository.
Sacred to the Memory
of Mr. Thomas Tootal,
late of Chevet,
who died the 24th day of March, 1802,
aged 47 years.
Lo! where this stone in solemn silence weeps,
A friend, a husband, and a father sleeps ;
Ennobled by the virtues of his mind ;
Constant to goodness, and in death resigned ;
Sure, in the silent Sabbath of the grave,
To taste that tranquil peace he always gave.
Oh! early lost in virtue's fairest prime,
His piety supplied life's want of time.
No death is sudden to a soul prepared-
When God's own hour brings always God's reward.
His death (and such, O reader, wish thine own)
Was free from terror and without a groan.
His spirit to himself the Almighty drew,
Mild as his Sun exhales the ascending dew.
died 14th Dec. 1793,
Out of respect to her memory,
Lieut. Gen. Tottenham, in whose family
she lived as an honest and faithful servant 13 years,
erected this stone.
Ricardi Nichols, Bibliopolœ,
Quœ, gravi morbo diu cruciata,
Undevigesimo die Augusti,
Anno salutis nostræ
Ætatis suœ trigesimo sexto.
Hic quoque humantur
Tres filii supradictorum,
Ricardus et alii duo,
qui omnes mortui sunt infantes.
To the Memory of
Giles Rickaby, Merchant,
who died 11th Jan. 1788, aged 80.
In Memory of
William Dunton, Jun.
who died 22nd of May 1795, aged 22 years.
When in the vigour of my youthful blood,
Proud Fortune offered scenes of promis’d good,
I smiling view’d the airy phantom fly,
Nor once I thought a youth like me would die.
I rose one morning healthful, vig’rous, gay,
But ere ‘twas noon a breathless corpse I lay.
Copyright Guy EtchellsÓ 2002 All rights reserved.
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First published in 2002.