Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for CHICHESTER

CHICHESTER, a city, a sub-district, a district, a rape, and a diocese in Sussex. The city stands at the junction of Stane-street with the Roman road to Porchester, on the rivulet Lavant and on the South Coast railway, 1½ mile ENE of the head of Chichester harbour, 9 N of Selsey Bill, 18 ENE of Portsmouth, and 28¾ W of Brighton. Its site is low flat ground, in a plain extending, under the South Downs, from Portsmouth to Brighton; and does not admit of any considerable view except from the towers of the cathedral. A short branch canal goes southward from it into junction with the Arundel and Portsmouth canal; and a small harbour, with a quay to which vessels of 180 tons can come in high tides, is 1½ mile distant, at Dellquay.

History.—Chichester was the Regnum of the Romans; the capital of the ancient Regni, the head-quarters of Flavius Vespasian. A strongly walled Roman station was built on the site; and a subordinate station formed not quite a mile to the N. The main station seems to have had connexion with the Pudens and Claudia of Martial and of 2 Tim. iv. 21: and has furnished a rich harvest of Roman relics; while the subordinate station is still traceable in the lines of embankment noticed in our article Boyle. Roman pavements, urns, and coins have been found in all parts of the city; a Roman pavement underlies the graveyard of St. Andrew's church; Roman tiles were found plentifully in the walls of St. Olave's church, at a recent restoration; a piece of fine red Samia pottery was found, in 1830, at St. Pancras churchyard; and a remarkable inscription, recording the dedication of a temple to Neptune and Minerva, was found, in 1720, at St. Martin's lane; and is now preserved at the Duke of Richmond's neighbouring seat of Goodwood. Regnum was burnt, in 478, by the Teutonic invader Ella; restored by Ella's son Cissa, king of the South Saxons; and named after him Cissaceaster, signifying "Cissa's camp, " and modernized into Chichester. The citizens repelled the Danes in 876 and 900. The city, with eighty-three manors, was given by William the Conqueror to Roger de Montgomery, Earl of Alençon. A castle was built, in the NE quarter, by the Earl; but is now thoroughly extinct. The city acquired such consequence from the Earl's sway, that it immediately became the seat of a diocese in lieu of Selsey. Its walls were repeatedly restored and strengthened; but they witnessed few of the calamities which assailed so many other cities; and being occupied by the royalists in 1642, they proved insufficient to resist a besieging force under Sir William Waller more than ten days. Queen Elizabeth visited Chichester in 1573.

Streets and Walls.—The city comprises four principal streets, named after the cardinal points, and meeting in the centre. The view in East-street, looking toward the cathedral, is very striking; and views in West-street, beyond the cathedral, and in Canon-lane, are good-A brick house in West-street, and some houses in the upper part of South-street, are said to have been built by Wren. A section opening from East-street, having four streets of its own, and called the Pallant, is the Archbishop's peculiar. The city-gates were at the ends of the four principal streets, but have been long removed. Considerable portions of the walls remain, with semicircular towers at intervals; and very pleasant public walks have been formed within them, planted with trees, and overlooking the environs.

Public Buildings.—The city cross, at the junction of the four principal streets, was erected, in 1502, by Bishop Storey; is an octagonal structure, in decorated English; and comprises central pier, side-piers, flying buttresses, pinnacles, and surmounting open turret. The guildhall, near the end of North street, was originally the chapel of a Grey friary, alleged to have been founded by Roger de Montgomery, but probably of earlier date, and given, at the dissolution, to the city corporation; and it is of late early English character, and contains very beautiful sedilia. The park around it is used for cricket, arch-ery, and other amusements; and includes a circular mound, of Roman origin, which may have been surmounted by a tower, or connected with the early defences of the city walls. The corn exchange is an elegant modern erection, built by subscription, at a cost of £10, 000. The episcopal palace is an ancient structure, renovated and enlarged in 1725; and has a square kitchen with grand timber roof, a hall with heraldic timber ceiling, and an early English chapel with sexpartite ceiling, and a fine fresco of the Virgin. The museum, in South-street, contains an interesting collection of antiquities found in the neighbourhood, and of local natural history. Other public buildings will be noticed in subsequent paragraphs.

The Cathedral.—The cathedral was founded in 1072; renovated after a fire in 1114; rebuilt after another fire in 1187; renovated and extended at various subsequent periods; subjected to a general renovation in years following 1847; and terribly damaged by the fall of its steeple in February, 1861. A resolution was promptly taken to rebuild the steeple and complete the restoration at an estimated cost of £50, 000; and as this was entirely carried out about the close of 1868, we may describe the edifice as it was. It consists of a nave of eight bays and four aisles; a transept with chambers instead of aisles; an aisled choir of three bays; an aisled presbytery of two bays; a Lady-chapel of four bays; a central steeple; a west porch; a south-west tower, the fellow of which in the north-west was destroyed by Waller's troops; and a campanile, standing detached on the north. The nave is 156 feet long, 91¾ wide, and 62¼ high; the choir 105 feet long, 59 wide, and 60 high; the presbytery, 56 feet long; the Lady-chapel, 62¾ feet long, 20½ wide, and 22 high; the transept, 131 feet long and 34¼ wide; the central steeple, 271 feet high; the south-west tower, 95 feet high; the campanile, 120 feet high; the entire edifice, 380 feet long. The original character was Norman; and the present one is mainly English, of periods from the early to the perpendicular. The nave has a vaulting of stone, a triforium of two round arches, and a clerestory of triplets in each bay; the choir has, in the east end, three lancet windows, with a rose of seven foliated circles in the gable; the presbytery has a triforium of pointed arches; the south transept has a fine decorated window of seven lights, with a marigold in the gable; the central steeple has a square tower rising 42 feet above the vaulting, and an octagonal spire rising 32 feet above the tower; and the campanile is crowned with an octagonal lantern. An organ screen, of three arches, was originally an oratory, built in 1447. The throne and the pulpit are recent. Portraits of kings and bishops were on the walls of the south transept; and chalices and heads of pastoral staffs are preserved in the Lady-chapel. The chief monuments are Norman coped-stones of Bishops Ralph, Seffrid, and Hilary; effigies of Bishops Sherborne, Rickingale, St. Richard, and Langton; effigies of an Earl and two Countesses of Arundel; a medallion of Collins by Flaxman; and a statue of Huskisson by Carew. The cloisters adjoin the south side of the nave; and are perpendicular English, and of three alleys; and have, at the south-east angle, a chapel of St. Faith, founded in the 12th century, and now used as a dwelling-house.

Livings and Churches.—The livings in the city, or connected with it, are the rectories of All Saints, St. Andrew, St. Martin, St. Olave, St. Pancras, and St. Peter the Less, the vicarages of St. Peter the Great, St. Bartholomew, and St. Paul, and the p. curacy of St. . John. Value of All Saints, £26; of St. Andrew, £80; of St. Martin, £52; of St. Olave, £56; of St. Pancras, £95;* of St. Peter the Less, £56; of St. Peter the Great, £300;* of St. Bartholomew, £65; of St. Paul and St. John, not reported. Patron of All Saints, the Arch-bishop of Canterbury; of St. Andrew, St. Martin, St. Olave, St. Peter the Great, and St. Paul, the Dean and Chapter of Chichester; of St. Pancras, Simeon's Trustees; of St. Peter the Less and St. Bartholomew, the Bishop of Chichester; of St. John, Trustees. -All Saints is the church of the Pallant or Archbishop's peculiar. St. Andrew's church, in East-street, stands over a Roman tessellated pavement, lying 4 or 5 feet below it; and contains the ashes of the poet Collins, and a monument of John Cawley, father of Cawley the regicide. A house adjoining it has interesting relics of the poet Hayley. St. Martin's church was rebuilt by Mrs. Deare, and has a monument of her. St. Olave's church was rebuilt in 1310, and restored in 1852; and retains traces of very early work, including a small door which possibly may be Roman. St. Pancras church was built in 1750, on the site of one destroyed in the civil war; and was enlarged with an aisle, and otherwise improved, in 1869. The church of St. Peter the Great was formerly the north transept of the cathedral; but, since 1852, is a new separate erection, in the style of the 14th century. St. Bartholomew's church, like that of St. Pancras, was rebuilt on the site of one destroyed in the civil war. St. John's church is a neat octagonal structure. -There are chapels for Independents, Baptists, Unitarians, Wesleyans, Quakers, and Roman Catholics.

Schools and Charities.—The diocesan school for the training of schoolmasters, situated beyond the city walls on the north, was founded in 1850 by Bishop Otter; bears the name of the Otter Memorial; is a handsome building, in the collegiate style of the 15th century, after designs by Butler; and contains accommodation for 24 students. The Vicar's hall, near South-street, was founded for a collegiate body toward the end of the 14th century; still contains an ancient lavatory and reader's pulpit; and is now used as a schoolroom. The grammar school was founded in 1497, by Bishop Story, for the education of the sons of freemen of the city; and numbers among its pupils Archbishop Juxon, who was a native, the poet Collins, Selden, and Hurdis. Whitby's free school was founded in 1702 by Oliver Whitby, Esq.; gives maintenance and education to 45 boys; and has an endowed income of £, 228. Bishop Manningham's grey-coat school for boys and blue-coat school for girls have £47. St. Mary's hospital, a short way east of North-street, was founded as a nunnery about the middle of the 12th century; passed soon into the character of an hospital; maintains 8 poor persons; and, next to the cathedral, is the most interesting edifice in the city, having a perpendicular English gateway, a refectory of the 14th century 83 feet long, a chapel of the same period 47½ feet long, with fine traceried windows, sacristy, oak stalls, sedilia, and piscina, and a rich decorated oak screen, separating the refectory from the chapel. St. James hospital was founded originally for lepers; and has an endowed income of £42. Deare's alms-houses were founded in 1806, by Mrs. Deare; and have £41. Hardham's charity was founded by Hardham the tobacconist, a native of the city, for "ease of inhabitants in payment of poor-rates;" and yields, £653 a year. The total amount of endowed charities is £, 424. The infirmary, in a beautiful situation outside the city, was erected in 1826 by subscription, and recently enlarged; and is supported at an annual cost of about £1, 600. There are also an infirmary, a dispensary, and a workhouse.

Trade.—The city has a head post office, ‡ a railway station with telegraph, three banking offices, and three chief inns; is a seat of sessions and a polling-place; and publishes a weekly newspaper. Markets are held on Wednesdays and Saturdays; and fairs on 3 May, Whit-Wednesday, 5 Aug., and 11-20 Oct. Manufactures of cooper-work, woodenware, and malt liquors are carried on; and considerable business in agricultural produce and live stock is done. The city was formerly a bonding port, with a registered tonnage of nearly, 000, chiefly in small coasting vessels; but it now does by railway much of the traffic which it then did by sea. Races are held in July at Goodwood.

The Borough.—Chichester was chartered by King Stephen; sent two members to parliament from the time of Edward 1. till 1867, but now sends only one; and is now governed by a mayor, six aldermen, and eighteen councillors. The borough boundaries include the parishes of All Saints, St. Andrew, St. Martin, St. Olave, and St. Peter the Less, the extra-parochial places of St. John and St. James, the precinct of Cathedral Close, the inhabited part of the parish of St. Bartholomew, parts of the parishes of St. Pancras and St. Peter the Great, all in Chi-chester district, and parts of the parishes of Rumbolds-Wyke and Oving in the district of Westhampnett. Acres, 604. Real property in 1860, inclusive of the other parts of those parishes which are not wholly within the borough, £3, 929. Direct taxes in 1857, £, 085. Electors in 186, 587. Pop. in 1841, , 512; in 1861, 059. Houses, , 601. The city gives the title of Earl to the family of Pelham. Archbishop Bradwardine, Bishop Buckner, the poet Collins, and other distinguished persons already incidentally named, were natives.

Divisions.—The sub-district of Chichester contains the parishes of All Saints, St. Andrew, St. Martin, St. Olave, St. Pancras, St. Peter the Less, St. Peter the Great, and St. Bartholomew, the extra-parochial places of St. John and St. James, and the precinct of Cathedral Close. Acres, , 830. Pop., , 884. Houses, 600.—The district comprehends also the sub-district of South Bersted, conterminate with South Bersted parish; and the sub-district of Sutton, containing the parishes of Sutton, Egdean, Barlavington, Burton, Duncton, Heyshott, Greatham, Bury, Fittleworth, Coates, Bignor, and Slindon, and the extra-parochial place of the Gumber. Acres, 2, 558. Poor-rates in 1862 of Chichester sub-district, £4, 137; of the other sub-districts, £, 464. Pop. in 184, 1, 620; in 1861, 1, 775. Houses, 2, 804. Marriages, in 1860, 113; births, 358, -of which 22 were illegitimate; deaths, 314, -of which 70 were at ages under 5 years, and 13 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 991; births, , 837; deaths, 3, 193. The places of worship in 1851 were 23 of the Church of England, with, 800 sittings; 3 of Independents, with 1, 115 s.; 1 of Baptists, with 150 s.; 1 of Quakers, with 90 s.; 1 of Unitarians, s. not reported; 2 of Wesleyan Methodists, with 398 s.; 1 of Bible Christians, with 75 s.; 1 of Independent Methodists, s. not reported; 4 undefined, with 300 s.; and 2 of Roman Catholics, with 222 s. The schools were 19 public day schools, with, 575 scholars; 49 private day schools, with 934 s.; and 16 Sunday schools, with, 176 s. The Chichester sub-district maintains its own poor under a local act; while the other sub-districts form the main part of Sutton poor-law union, still under the act of 43d Elizabeth. -The rape contains the hundreds of Aldwick, Bosham, Dumpford, Easebourne, Manhood, Box and Stockbridge, and Westbourne and Singleton, and the liberties of Lodsworth and St. John. Acres, 15, 678. Pop. in 185133, 340; in 186133, 327. Houses, 6, 665.

The Diocese.—The see was founded in 681, at Selsey; and removed, in 1072, to Chichester. It has had, among its bishops, St. Wilfrid, who taught the use of the fishing-net; Seffrid, who was deposed; Hilary, who demurred to the Constitutions of Clarendon; Lord-Chancellor Neville; Sir Richard Chandos de la Wyche; Lord-Chancellor Langton; Lord-Chancellor Stratford; Lord-Privy-Seal Moleyns; the Arian Pecock; the munificent Sherborne; Andrewes; Montague; Gunning; Patrick; the poet Henry King; Manningham; and Hare, the opponent of Hoadly. The dignitaries include the bishop, a dean, two archdeacons, a chancellor, a treasurer, four canons residentiary, twenty-eight prebendaries, and two minor canons. The income of the bishop is £4, 200; of the dean £1, 000; of each of the archdeacons, £200. The dio. is nearly conterminate with Sussex; and is divided into the archdeaconries of Chichester and Lewes. Acres, 93, 851. Pop. in 186, 36, 735. Houses, 6, 578. Some of the livings have recently been raised in status; but all shall be named here as they stood in 1861. The archdeaconry of Chichester contains the deaneries of Arundel, Boxgrove, Chichester, Midhurst, Storrington, Pagham, and Tarring. The deanery of Arundel comprises the rectories of East Angmering, Clapham, Eastergate, Ford, Middleton, and North Stoke; the vicarages of Amberley, Houghton, West Angmering, Arundel, Barnham, Binstead, Burpham, Bury, Climping, Felpham, Ferring, East Preston, Leominster, Little Hampton, Madehurst, Poleing, Preston, Rustington, Tortington, Walberton, and Yapton; and the p. curacy of North Stoke. The deanery of Boxgrove comprises the rectories of Almodington, Earnley, Birdham, North Marden, Merston, Racton, Selsey, West Stoke, West Thorney, Up-Waltham, and East Wittering; the vicarages of Aldingbourne, Bosham, Boxgrove, Chidham, Compton, Donnington, Eartham, East Dean, Westhampnett, Hunston, East Marden, North Mundham, Oving, Sidlesham, Stoughton, Westbourne, West Dean, and West Wittering; and the p. curacies of Appledram, Up-Marden, Funtington, Midlavant, Lordington, and Stansted. The deanery of Chichester comprises the livings of Chichester city; and the rectories of Brede, Crowhurst, New Fishborne, and Rumbolds-Wyke. The deanery of Midhurst comprises the rectories of Barlavington, Bepton, Bignor, Bodecton or Burton, Coates, Duncton, Egdean, Elsted, Graffham, Hardham, Iping, Lurgasall, Lynch, North Chapel, Petworth, Selham, Stedham, Heyshot, Stopham, Sutton, Terwick, Tillington, Trotton, Woolbeding, and Wool-Lavington; the vicarages of Fittleworth, Harting, Kirdford, and Rogate; and the p. curacies of Easebourne, Farnhurst, Childhurst, Plaistow, West Lavington, Linchmere, Lodsworth, Midhurst Tuxlith. and Cold Waltham. The deanery of Storrington comprises the rectories of Ashington, Ashurst, Bramber, Broadwater, West Chillington, Combes, West Grinstead, Itchingfield, Nuthurst, Parham, Pulborough, Ruspar, Slinfold, Storrington, Sullington, Thakeham, Wiggonholt, and Greatham; the vicarages of Billingshurst, Buttulph, Findon, Goring, Horsham, Lancing, Rudgwick, Sompting, Steyniug, Warnham, Washington, and Green-Wisborough; and the p. curacies of Buncton, Worthing, Worthing-Christchurch, Horsham-St. Mark, Southwater, Shipley, Cockham-Chapel, and Loxwood. The deanery of Pagham comprises the rectories of East Lavant, Sliudon, and Tangmere; the vicarages of Bersted and Pagham; and the p. curacy of Bognor-in-Bersted. The deanery of Tarring comprises the rectory of Patching and the vicarage of West Tarring.

The archdeaconry of Lewes is at present distributed into eleven groups of parishes, under the jurisdiction of rural deans, who are incumbents of Balcombe, Shermanbury, Frant, Hurstperpoint, Lewes-All-Saints, Westham, Burwash, Beckley, Bexhill, Ripe, and Framfield. The first group comprises the rectories of Ardingley, Balcombe, Crawley, Slaugham, and Worth; the vicarages of Cuckfield, East Grinstead, Ifield, and West Hoathley; and the p. curacies of Staplefield-Common, Forest-Row, Lindfield, Wivelsfield, and Crawley-Down. The second group comprises the rectories of Albourne, Shermaubury, Twineham, and Woodmancote; the vicarages of Upper Beeding, Bolney, Cowfold, and Henfield; and the p. curacy of Lower Beeding. The third group comprises the rectories of Hartfield and Withyham; the vicarages of Frant, Mayfield, and Wadhurst; and the p. curacies of Rotherfield, Tidebrook, and Crowborough. The fourth group comprises the rectories of Clayton, Hangleton, Hurstperpoint, Kingston-by-Sea, Newtimber, Plumpton, Poynings, Pyecombe, Southwick, Street, and Westmeston; the vicarages of Ditchling, Hooe, Patcham, Portslade, Preston, New Shoreham, and Old Shoreham; and the p. curacy of Keymer. The fifth group comprises the rectories of Falmer, Stanmer, Hamsey, Lewes-All Saints, Lewes-St. Anne, Lewes-St. John, Lewes-St. Michael, Cliffe, Southover, Newhaven, Ovingdean, Rodmell, Southease, and Telscombe; the vicarages of Iford, Kingston, Piddinghoe, Ringmar, and Rottingdean; and the donative of Malling. The sixth group comprises the rectories of Folkington, Hurstmon-ceaux, Jevington, Littlington, and Pevensey; the vicarages of Eastbourne, East Dean, Friston, Hailsham, Hellingley, Wartling, West Dean, Westham, Willingdon, and Wilmington; and the p. curacy of Eastbourne-Trinity. The seventh group comprises the rectories of Penshurst, Brightling, Burwash, Etchingham, Waldron, and Warbleton; the vicarages of Dallington, Heathfield, Salehurst, and Ticehurst; and the p. curacies of Stonegate, Flimwell, and Warbleton-St. John. The eighth group comprises the rectories of Beckley, Brede, East Guildford, Ewhurst, Iden, Northiam, Playden, Sedlescombe, Whatlington, and Winchelsea; the vicarages of Mountfield, Peasmarsh, and Rye; and the p. curacy of Udimer. The ninth group comprises the rectories of Catsfield, Crowhurst, Guestling, Hastings-All Saints, Hastings-St. Clement, Ninfield, Oare, and Pett; the vicarages of Battle, Bexhill, Fairlight, Hollington, Hove, Icklesham, and Westfield; and the p. curacies of Bexhill-St. Mark, Hastings-St. Mary, St. Leonards-on-Sea, and St. Mary Magdalen-in-St. Leonards. The tenth group comprises the rectories of Berwick, Bletchington, Chalvington, Denton, Ripe, and Tarring-Neville; the vicarages of Arlington, Beddingham, Bishopstone, Chiddingley, Firle, Glynde, Laughton, Seaford, Selmeston, and Alliston; and the p. curacy of Dicker-Common. The eleventh group comprises the rectories of Barcombe Buxted, Chailey, East Hoathley, Horsted-Keynes, Little Horsted, Isfield, Maresfield, and Newick; the vicarages of Fletching and Framfield; and the p. curacies of Dane-hill, Hadlow-Down, Nutley, and Uckfield.


(John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72))

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "a city, a sub-district, a district, a rape, and a diocese"   (ADL Feature Type: "cities")
Administrative units: Chichester CP       Chichester RegD/Inc       Sussex AncC
Place names: CHICHESTER     |     OTTER MEMORIAL
Place: Chichester

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