In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described St Osyth like this:
OSYTH (St.), a village, a parish, and a sub-district, in Tendring district, Essex. The village stands on acreek of the river Colne, 1¾ mile N of the coast, 2¾ S E of Brightlingsea r. station, and 11 S E of Colchester; is one of the oldest places in the county; was known to the Saxons as Chich; took its present name from St Osyth.daughter of King Redwald and wife of King Sighere of the East Saxons; and has a post-office‡ under Colchester, and a fair on Holy Thursday. The parish contains also the hamlets of New Frowick and Wigborough-Wick; extends to the coast; and comprises 8, 571 acres of land, and 1, 100 of water. ...
Real property, £13,070. Pop., 1, 638. Houses, 349. The manor, with Hill House, belongs to Brandreth, Esq. A nunnery was founded here by St. Osyth, who was its first abbess, and suffered martyrdom by the Danes. The nunnery was burnt by the Danes; and the remains of it were given, by Canute, to Earl Godwin. An Augustinian priory was founded on its site, in 1118, by Bishop Belmeis; and passed to the Cromwells, the D' Arcies, and the Earls of Rochford; and considerable portions of it are now included in the mansion called the Priory, the residence of J. H. Johnson, Esq. Much of the land is marsh; but part is comparatively high, and includes Beacon Hill. A battery and two martello towers are on the coast. The living is a p. curacy in the diocese of Rochester. Value, £150. Patron, the Bishop of Rochester. The church is ancient, large, and good; has aisles and a tower; and contains some monuments of the D' Arcies. There are chapels for Wesleyans and Swedenborgians, a national school, and charities £10.The sub-district contains also seven other parishes. Acres, 26, 942. Pop., 6,072. Houses, 1, 351.
A Vision of Britain through Time includes a large library of local statistics for administrative units. For the best overall sense of how the area containing St Osyth has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Tendring. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering St Osyth and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of St Osyth, in Tendring and Essex | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 25th October 2014
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