[From Diocesan History, 1893]
IN our last chapter we traced the gradual process of reform in the Manx Church up to the dissolution of the religious houses, and we will now endeavour to show that this process continued to be more gradual in the Manx Church than in the English after that date, as well as before it. As proofs of this we may quote: (i) That, in 1594, legislation was required against carrying banners and bells before the dead1; (2) an order of Lord Derby's, at the same time, against eating meat in Lent ; (3) the children of ecclesiastics in Man not having been legitimized till 1610, whereas the Act for the marriage of the clergy was passed in England in 15492; and (4) praying for the dead and other "reliques of popish superstition," mentioned by Bishop Levinz as existing in 1688.3 The gradual process of reform among the Manx was also testified to by a writer of the middle of the seventeenth century as follows:" They somewt unwillingly at first left ye practice of ye primitive church, yet at last they complyed to banish ye Pope, but wth him most willingly they retayned the old six Articles. In King Edwd ye 6 his reigne they admitted of ye Book of Common Prayer. After, in Queen Marye's reigne, they easily admitted of ye mass and its concomitants, as being their ancient religion, whch they had but lately left off."4 Though, on the other hand, Bishop Meryck wrote, in 1590, after stating that the people "are extremely religious," that they "most readily conform without a single exception to the formularies of the Church of England."5 And yet, when we consider the isolation of the diocese, the ignorance of the English language (as, if the reformed Liturgy had been introduced into Man in the days of Edward VI. and Elizabeth, it would have been no better understood than the old Latin service books), and the absence of books in the native tongue, the slowness of this change will no longer cause surprise. There is, however, a distinct break in the continuity of the history of the Manx Church caused by the arbitrary action of Henry VIII in dissolving the monastery of Rushen6 in, or before, 1539. So this may be adopted as the starting-point of a new period, though in one respect at least, the continuance of disputes between Church and State, there is a remarkable resemblance to the previous period. For, in 1541, "an enquest of the twenty-four with the two Deemsters find and present that my Lord's Prerogative is put down by the bishop and clergy, for that they make vicars of their own mind, the which they find by their oaths that my Lord is metropolitan and chief of Holy Church, and that the bishop shall do nothing but at my Lord's pleasure; by reason whereof the bishop shall not present to any benefice within the Isle by reason of any lapse of time. . . . To the contrary hereof, the bishop hath presented one Dr. Gilbert Lessage to the vicarage of Kk. Michael."7 And, when there is again a continuous account of affairs in Man, sixty years later, similar differences are found prevailing.
In the following year, an important change came about, for there was then passed "an Act for dissevering the bishoprick of Chester and of the Isle of Man from the jurisdiction of Canterbury to the jurisdiction of York," by which both dioceses were placed under "the metropolitan jurisdiction" of York, "to every effect and purpose, according the ecclesiastical laws in this realm."8 This Act, it was argued, had the effect of vesting in the archbishop, as regards Man, the same right as to appeals which he had with respect to the diocese of Chester; and, if so, the lord ceased to be metropolitan, as declared in the previous year. But we will return to this subject when discussing the question of appeals. From this time till the very end of the sixteenth century, when there were some disputes about tithes, there is scarcely any information to be got about the Church in Man9, but it seems to have been either then, or early in the seventeenth century, that it was probably organized on a post-reformation basis. It is this reorganization of the Church, the discipline administered by it, and its disputes with the State, that are the salient points of the history of the earlier part of the seventeenth century. We will proceed to deal with them in the order named.
The first step towards the organization of the Church was the committal of its spiritual statutes to writing. This, as we learn from contemporary evidence12, was done about the year 1610, not in 1577, as stated in the statute book. To obtain some idea of the constitution of the reformed Church, an analysis of these laws will be necessary; and to enable us to do this more completely, we will also include those spiritual laws which, although most of them were probably administered at this period, were not written down till 1667 in accordance with Bishop Barrow's order. These, together with the laws of 1610, make altogether one hundred and forty-five "breast laws," or judicial dicta, laid down for the guidance of the courts in similar cases13. A large portion of them is concerned with the clergy's powers, privileges, and dues. The powers and privileges of the bishop, to take him first, were very considerable. As Baron of the Isle14 he held his own court; he had a seat in the Council, and was the supreme administrator of the spiritual laws, the following causes belonging to his jurisdiction, or that of his substitutes the vicars-general, only " 1. The Clergy. 2. Excommunication. 3. Decrees. 4. Mitigation of fines. 5. Marriages and licences for marriage. 6. Divorcement. 7. Adultery. 8. Incest. 9. Witchcraft. 10. The calling a woman a bitch or a man a dog. 11. The censures of fornication upon relapse and other offenders the second or third time. 12. Effusion or spilling of blood in the churchyard. 13. Prophaning the Sunday or any other Holy-day. 14. Persons that refute the excommunication in contempt at their own parish church. 15. The committing offenders into St. German's prison (which is the Bishop's prison)." He could place and displace curates at his discretion. If a rector or a vicar died, and no one was installed within six months from Easter, then the bishop could take the living in lapse, unless it was in the lord's gift. Any minister not yielding obedience to him or his chief officers was suspended ab officio et beneficio. If a minister committed any heinous fault, he was suspended and proceeded against by the bishop with the advice of the clergy. The bishop had his herring scout and fishing-boat tithe free, and he received the following fees: For every citation sixpence, for every "suspencion" eighteen pence, and for excommunication two shillings and sixpence; "also, when any great offence is worthy excommunication, then the ordinary hath been used to take for the Excommunication, Absolucion, and receiving all such persons into the Church again ten shillings." He also received one penny for the name of each fornicator presented by the chapter-quest, whose name was entered by him. For probate, his fee was in accordance with the indenture of 1532, except that "when rich men do depart intestate and the ordinary make a perfect will," he is to have three shillings and fourpence.
The archdeacon, or his official acting as his substitute, also held courts, in which, excepting the episcopal causes, he had the same jurisdiction as the bishop15: he had a seat in the Council16, and had the right to his herring scout and fishing boat without paying any tithes. As Rector of Andreas his dues and fees were the same as the other rectors.
As to the privileges of the clergy generally, we find that the penalty for assaulting a clergyman was excommunication, and that for cursing "an officer either spiritual or temporal," the offender was to be "comitted immediately into St. German's Prison, and not released till he first gave bonds to perform his censure, which is to wear the bridle for several market days at the several market towns for the space of an hour in the height of the market." It was provided that any difference in a matter of slander between a clergyman and a layman was to be adjudicated upon by a jury, one half of whom were clergymen and the other half laymen. Also, that when laws about spiritual concerns were enacted by the Tinwald Court, the consent of the clergy was necessary to make them binding. No one was allowed to sit or bury in the chancel of any church without the consent of the rector, who was obliged to keep the chancel in repair, while the parishioners had to maintain the body of the church "within and without, with all ornaments and other necessaries." An important privilege was that "all instituted Parsons and Viccars of thirds or Viccars of pension, ought to have his brige and staff; that is to say, if they have a man servant that cometh to them of his own free will, he ought not to be taken from them." On the other hand, they were severely punished for transgressing the spiritual laws. Thus, if they married any one without licence or banns, they were suspended for three years, and if they made a clandestine marriage, they and all present were excommunicated and committed to St. German's prison.
As to their fees, rectors and vicars were allowed to choose their fishing-boat at Easter time, and their scout at herring-fishing time17. The mortuaries received by them were to be as in 1532, but it was provided that none were to be paid for those who die when less than ten years old. They also received twelve pence "for every will and inventory, except there be a legacy left by the deceased to the minister to the value of twelve pence." With regard to tithe, each tenth stook of corn was taken by them, and no one was allowed to make up his stacks before the tithe stooks were taken by the parson or his proctor. "All Tyth Flax and Hemp is to be brought to the Parish Church with the seed thereof," also the tithe butter and cheese in the months of June, July, August, and September. "Those that depose they have neither butter nor cheese made within any of the said monthes, that then, if they have one milk cow, to pay two pence, and out of four goats two pence." Sheep, lambs, purrs, or wild swine, calves, colts, geese, eggs, hens, honey, wax, fish of all kinds, were subject to tithe, and various fantastic arrangements are to be found in the statute book with reference to their incidence. All trades were tithable. "All persons that are marryed and unmarryed that have received the communion before," paid twopence every Easter, while those that received it for the first time paid one penny.
Besides the clergy, there were also their functionaries, the sumners, and the clerks of the parishes, who were paid in kind as follows: The sumner "hath for his paines and duty doing one principall cheese" from each tenant, also one choice lamb and one fleece of wool, and of the corn crop he had "a band of three lengthes of three principal cornes porcion alike paid from every husbandman". For conveying a prisoner to jail, he received fourpence. The clerk, who was chosen by the parishioners18, but with the authorization of the Ordinary, had the cheese tithe, the lamb, and the fleece mentioned above, also "a groate (fourpence) out of every plow," and from those "that have no plowes and keep smoak," one penny. He also received a portion of what is called "Clark's silver" at deaths, which "on the south side of the isle is eleven pence, and the head penny, of which the curate hath sevenpence, the parish clark threepence, and the parson's clark twopence". On the north side of the island the amount of "Clark's silver" was fifteen pence, but it is not stated how it was divided. The clerk's corpse present was from a man twenty pence, or his "apparell," and from a woman seventeen pence. These were the fees paid by the representatives of well-to-do people; with regard to poor people, the amount of the fee was a matter of agreement.
The duties of the clergy, as we learn from the churchwardens' oath19, were "to read the service of the Church on Sundays and Holy days soberly and distinctly, and in due time. To preach one sermon every Sunday (having no lawfull impediment) in such Language or Tongue as shall be to the best edification of the people. To catechize the youth of the parish every Sunday in the afternoon, and to explain some part of the Church Catechism after so plain and familiar a manner as may be to the edifying of the Parishioners. To suffer none to come to the Holy Sacrament of the Lord's supper until such time as they be confirmed. To visit the Sick, to marry none without Banns or Licence, nor at any time but betwixt the Hours of Eight and Twelve in the forenoon: and to live so soberly as to be a Pattern of Religion and Virtue to his whole Parish." From this same oath, we also learn that the duties of parish clerks were "To Ring the Bells in due Time, to attend the Minister (when required) at the visitation of the Sick, at the burial of the Dead, or baptizim of Children. To raise the Psalm when required by the Minister, or else to procure it to be done to the satisfaction of the Minister."20 The sumner's duties were to call "within the church with the advice of the Vicar or Curate all such things as he is requested of the Parish that is gone or lost," to stand "at the chancel door at the time of service to whip and beat all the doggs," to convey offenders against the spiritual laws to jail, and act as the sumner-general's deputy21. The people also elected the churchwardens, four for each parish, when assembled in vestry once yearly. Their duties were "to see good orders kept in the church and church-yard, their church-yard ditch to be well made, to make a true and just accompt to their parishioners four times in the yeare, to enquire of all offences committed against the Spiritual Law: as also to see all lawful injunctions read in the church, to present all those that use Witchcraft or Sorcery, Adulterers, Fornicators, Blasphemers, Drunkards, and such like: also such as profane the Sabbath, that refuse to come to church to have divine service, or receive the blessed sacrament."22 Another body connected with each parish and its church was the chapter-quest, consisting of four men, who were empannelled every year by the bishop or vicars-general to perform much the same duties as the churchwardens.
Another very considerable portion of these spiritual laws relates to criminal matters, and more especially to offences against morality. The following are the more important and characteristic of them. "That such as defame the dead are to make pennance23 and to ask the kindred's forgiveness, because it is done in disgrace of all his Relations, and Publication to be made that none revive the same in Penalty of £3 to the Lord's use and forty days' imprisonment." "That if any aspersion be cast on man or woman, the slanderer is to be punished if he cannot prove the same, and the like publication to be made for the living party as for the dead." The punishment for slander against the living was usually that of wearing a bridle at the market cross of the nearest town, or to make from one to fourteen Sundays' penance, according to the enormity of the offence, in the several parish churches. Common whores were "to be drawn after a boat in the sea during the Ordinarie's appointment."24
Adulterers were usually condemned to "make seven Sundays' pennance in several parishes, and for a relapse fourteen, and adding always the number of seven as oft as they transgress, besides a fine to the Lord with imprisonment."
"Whosoever commits Fornication shall make three Sundays' pennance, and if they marry that they go from the Sheet to the Ring;"25 and, "All offenders censured to Pennance are to perform their censures and satisfy the Law before they be admitted to the Holy Communion, and to pay threepence to the minister for every day's Penance for writing certificates, and to the Sumner twopence, and if the offender bring not a sheet he is to pay the Sumner fourpence for furnishing him, and no appeal be from the Church, and none offending be privileged from censures."
Cursing, when applied to a layman26, was punished with the stocks, or pillory, and imprisonment. If any one appealed from the spiritual judges to the "Staff of government," he was handed back to the former for punishment if he could not prove his case.
"All those which are suspected" of sorcery and witchcraft," and are presented by the chapter-quest, then the Ordinary doth examine all such causes; and finding any suspicion, shall appoint another jury of honest probable men within the same parish, and doth committ the party suspected in the meantime to the Bishop his prison: and all the offences and crimes the jury do find, or can prove, the Ordinary shall write; and if the jury can bring or prove any notorious fact or crime done by the said person, then the Ordinary shall deliver the same person out of the Bishop's prison to my Lord's gaole and Court."
The severest punishment imposed by the Church was that of excommunication27. It was only made use of in the case of hardened offenders, and, as we have already seen, of slanderers of the clergy.
The form of excommunication was as follows:- "Forasmuch as your crimes have been so great, repeated and continued in so long as to give offence to all sober Christians, and even to cry to Heaven for vengeance. And you having had sufficient time given you to consider of the consequence of continuing in them without any visible or sincere remorse or probability of a future reformation. Therefore, in the name of our Lord Christ and before this Congregation, we pronounce and declare you A.B. Excommunicate and shut out of the Communion of all faithful Christians. And may Almighty God, who by His Holy Spirit has appointed this sentence for removing of scandal and offence out of the Church, and for reducing of sinners to a sense of their sins and danger, make this censure to all the good ends for which it was ordained. And that your Heart may be filled with fear and dread, that you may be recovered out of the same and out of the power of the Devil, and that your Soul may be saved, and that others may be warned by your sad example not to sin nor continue in sin so presumptuously."
Such were the laws under which was administered the famous discipline of the Manx Church, about which Bishop Wilson wrote: "There is nothing more commendable than the discipline of this church. . . . Offenders of all conditions, without distinction, are obliged to submit to the censures appointed by the church, whether for correction or example (commutation of penances being abolished by a late law), and they generally do it patiently. Such as do not submit (which hath hitherto been but few) are either imprisoned or excommunicated; under which sentence if they continue more than forty days, they are delivered over to the Lord of the Isle, both body and goods."28
An even larger portion of these laws was occupied with the administration of wills, [and especially the estates of] intestates. Thus the Ordinary had power, in certain cases, of amending dispositions or supplying the neglects of a deceased person, where they seemed obviously contrary to natural piety. Thus "if any make a testament and leave not sixpence legacy to their children, unmarried, legitimately begotten," the Ordinary may make such children executors; or "if any die intestate, having no children legitimately begotten, but only base children, then the Ordinary shall make and ordain his next of kindred, both of father's and mother's side, to be lawful executors; and the base-born to be rewarded of charity, at the discretion of the Ordinary." And in general, the Ordinary was allowed a large discretion in apportioning the remains of a parent's property as was best for the education and maintenance of the children.29
The tender care of the Manx ecclesiastical law for the interests of the destitute and of children was also shown by the following: When a person died in debt to the lord, and his debts were found to "surmount" his inventory, the lord received the first share, then the orphans, and finally others "penny pound like."30
Attendance at church was, as we have seen, ordered to be enforced by the churchwardens and chapter-quests, and it was ordained, by the thirty-first law, in 1667, "that there be a communion in the Church at least eight times in the year, . . and all at fourteen years to receive, but first to be examined by the minister, or be presented, unless a lawfull cause appear."
"The main characteristic of the Manx ecclesiastical code," however, is its prevailing supposition that "faith"31 generally prevailed, and no doubt this was so generally till the eighteenth century. Excommunication would therefore be a horrible reality in this world, and so would the penalty of taking a false oath in the next. Accordingly we find that a great part of the evidence in many cases lay in the voluntary oaths of one or more of the parties. Thus "in a difference depending betwixt party and party, when one gives it to the other upon his oath absolutely, there shall be no further hearing of that matter in the Spiritual Court." This implies so much trust in men's oaths as to ignore all risk of collusion. Again: "When sufficient men are sworn to prize" (appraise) "children's goods, the said goods shall not be forced on them, under pretence of overrating them (for men must discharge their consciences), but the executors or overseers must take all things according to prizement"; also that "for fathering an illegitimate child the woman's oath is sufficient," though it was not sufficient to prove a promise of marriage. Upon such grounds, the Manx legislators encouraged compurgation generally, and, more especially, that solemn process of purgation which is thus described in the tenth customary law: "he that entereth his claim within a year and a day after the probate of the will and endeavouring to prove the same within the said limited time, without Bill, Bond or evidence, shall prove the same upon the grave of him or her from whom the same was due with lawfull Compurgators, according to the ancient form, viz. lying on his Back with the Bible on his breast and his Compurgators on either side one." This swearing on the grave seems to have been prescribed in default of documentary evidence between a deceased person, his debtors and creditors. We shall see that it was soon to be denounced by the temporal authorities32. Having thus briefly summarized the more important of the ecclesiastical laws, let us now inquire into the constitution of the courts which administered them.
There were three classes of Church Courts, in which the bishop presided either in person or by deputy.33
First, the Summary Court, where proofs of wills were taken, and in which the proceedings were almost entirely vivâ voce. During the summer half of the year, ie. from St. Mark's day to St. Simon and St. Jude's, it was presided over by one of the vicars-general, and, during the winter half by the archdeacon or his official. It also granted letters of administration for all intestates, in unopposed cases gave sentence on claims by way of legacy or debt, and on all other matters relating to the goods of the deceased ; and also concerning tithes and other Church dues.
Second, the Chapter Court, to the cognizance of which all immoralities and other violations of discipline within each parish were presented by the ministers and churchwardens and chapter-quests, who held a sort of inquest every third week with regard to the cases which they should present. The Chapter Courts were held in circuit by the vicars-general and archdeacon's official twice a year in each of the six sheadings. Their business, besides the trying of the disciplinary causes, which in most cases were disposed of summarily, was the admission of churchwardens and chapter-quests, the granting probate of wills, and administration of the estates of intestates. If disciplinary causes and matters relating to wills and administrations in the bishop's jurisdiction were not disposed of summarily, the case was remitted to the third court, the Consistory Court, which was the highest of the ecclesiastical courts. To it appeals lay in all the cases above-mentioned, and besides them, it dealt with certain cases which were reserved as episcopal causes. The proccedings in it were entirely documentary, sometimes by written plea or answer, and generally by evidence committed to writing. In some cases, e. g. where sentence of deprivation on a clergyman was to be pronounced, the bishop's personal presence was required, in others his virtual presence by his vicars-general was sufficient.
The bishop had also a court for his own barony, which was occupied by a number of copyholders or customary tenants. This court had real jurisdiction, both civil and criminal, over the tenants of the manor, unless they were also tenants of the Lord of the Isle. It was presided over by a steward appointed by the bishop, having under him two serjeants, one for the northern and the other for the southern district of the barony. These serjeants served the processes of the court, and collected the chief rents and heriots payable to the bishop as lord. Any one of the bishop's tenants, even if charged with felony, had the privileges of his court, and the steward might claim him to be tried there, even though he were already indicted and arraigned by the Court of General Gaol Delivery. In such trials the steward was assisted by one or both of the deemsters, and by the comptroller, or clerk of the rolls; the attorney-general appeared to guard the interests of the lord; and there was no reference to any other court, but only to the House of Keys in civil causes, and in criminal to the governor and Council. So that in prerogative, though not perhaps in actual working, the bishop's Court Baron, or Manor Court, had a high place in the Manx constitution.
As to the working of these ecclesiastical courts generally, Bishop Wilson commented: "In matters spiritual it is easy to observe very many footsteps of primitive discipline and integrity; offenders are neither overlooked nor treated with imperiousness; if they suffer for their crimes, it is rarely in their purses, unless they are very obstinate, and relapse into their former or other great offences. As for civil offences that come before these Courts, they are soon dispatched, and almost without any charge."
The ecclesiastical courts acquired more extensive powers in Man than in England, inasmuch as it not only belonged to them to determine the validity of wills, and to grant administrations, but to sustain all causes respecting them, or concerning the legacies or the debts of the deceased, within one year and a day from the probate of the will, or granting of administration; and likewise all suits against executors and administrators, as such, at any time within two years from the cause of action. They also for divers offences, besides inflicting Church censures, detained the offenders in the ecclesiastical prison, which was a subterraneous vault in the Castle of Peel, in order, after an examination of a jury of six (whom they were authorized to impanel), to be delivered, if judged necessary, for further trial and punishment, to the temporal power; and they not only committed to their dungeon for the purpose of such detention, but confinement there was sometimes ordered by their definitive sentence, in affairs merely spiritual.
The staff by which these laws were administered consisted of the archdeacon, nominated by the lord, and the two vicars-general, the diocesan registrar, the archidiaconal registrar, and the sumner-general. This last officer was a sort of apparitor who delivered citations and served the judgments of the courts on the parties concerned. He had a deputy in each parish.
Some of these officers had a share in the civil government of the island, and in this capacity had seats in the Council. The bishop as premier baron ranked next to the governor. The Abbot of Rushen before the Reformation also sat in the Council, but the other spiritual barons were non-resident. Of the other ecclesiastical officers, the archdeacon seems to have generally had a seat in the Council, while the vicars- general and the archdeacon's official were only occasionally members of it. In 1791, when evidence was given before the Royal Commission, there was a difference of opinion about the rights of the above to seats, the deemster considering that all had a fixed seat, the attorney-general being uncertain about it, while the clerk of the rolls thought that the bishop and the other ecclesiastical officers were only entitled to attend the Council when summoned by the governor. The most probable view of the question, however, seems to be that given above. For some years after 1777 the ecclesiastical officers were excluded from the Council by the governor, but they were again restored in 1790. At the present day, the bishop, the archdeacon, and vicar-general are always recognized as members of the Council.
In the absence of records, there are no means of learning how the reformed Manx Church administered its spiritual discipline before the very end of the sixteenth century, but from that time till the death of Bishop Phillips in 1633, there is ample evidence in the ecclesiastical records that, as regards moral offences, and non-attendance at church on Sundays and Saints' days, this administration, or discipline, as it has come to be called, was remarkably severe, more severe than during the epoch of Bishop Wilson, who has been ignorantly supposed to have made it much more rigorous. This severity of the discipline is all the more remarkable, when we consider that the tendency during that period was to revolt from any sort of authority or discipline. The ordinary punishment for moral offences was imprisonment in St German's prison, three days being the smallest and six months the largest term, together with from one to fourteen Sundays' penance, according to the enormity of the misdeed. For non-attendance at church, penance was the usual punishment.
We find, however, that, during the first ten years of the seventeenth century, there being great need of repairs to the chapel at Castletown, many of the less serious of the above offences were commuted for a money payment. The most incorrigible offenders, among whom was a Vicar of Braddan, for a "clandestine marriage", were excommunicated, and of this punishment there are more recorded instances during the first twenty-five years of the seventeenth century than during any other later period of equal length. Nor did the ecclesiastical power confine the exercise of its authority to the poor, as no less a person than the Captain of Castle Rushen was sent to St German's prison for "marrying without asking Banes (sic) or Licence from the Ordinary." The most trivial offences, too, received their punishment, as, for instance, a man for leaning on the communion table was sent to prison for three days. But the most significant sign of the height to which ecclesiastical pretensions went, is a regulation passed at Convocation, in 1617, to the effect "that no manner of person shall traduce or obloquie or call in question any churchwarden or sworn man for any presentment they present or set down upon their oathes, upon payne of the churches censure to the highest degree." The Church officials were, in fact, to be considered infallible. They seem, however, not to have been particularly energetic in putting the spiritual law in force, as, in 1629, the bishop wrote, "Whereas manie offenders have beene presented, and (by negligent procrastinacon) not yet punished, to suppress and debilitate the strength of irreligious impieties, wee will and requier you to send us an abstracte of their names, especially of the adulterers . . . That (knowinge impunitie to bee a greate alurement to sin and encouragement to the wicked to dooe woarse) wee may injoyne they doe their due deserved penances according to law, and the qualitie of their offence, whereby the offended congregacone may be satisfied, justice duly executed, delinquents reformed, sin suppressed, the scelerous and ill disposed premonished and examined."
The next prominent feature of this epoch is the struggle between Church and State, in which struggle the chief points at issue were the claim of the Church to jurisdiction over the garrison soldiers, and the claim of the State to decide appeals from the Ecclesiastical Court.
The first question came before Bishop and Governor Meryck, who, with the assistance of the deemsters, decided that "the punishing of soldrs, or any of the Lieutenant's ffamilly, for criminal causes, doth not by law belong to the Bishop or spirituall jurisdiction." This question was, however, again raised by Bishop Phillips in 1610, when it was laid before the "officers, Deemsters, Vicars-generall, and twenty-four keyes," who referred to the above decision and confirmed it. The bishop contrived, however, after Governor Ireton's departure, to exercise jurisdiction over the soldiers for a while, but, as Lord Strange was against him on this point, he had ultimately to give way. The second question, that of appeals, led to constant disputes, till at last, in 1627, Edward Fletcher, the governor, with the advice of the deemsters and the approbation of the vicars-general, stated the law on the subject as follows:
"By the ancient and accustomary laws of this Isle, any Inhabittor finding himself agrieved by any censure or proceeding held agt him in the Spiritual Court, may, upon ye same, appeale unto the Lord his Staff of Govermt here, and further, as occasion shall be offered, unto the Lord himself, for this is a prerogative. Upon wch appeale exhibited, the Staff of governmt may prohibitt the spirituall officers from any further proceedings or intermeddleing therewth untill an indifferent tryall may be had concerning the same, so the same be done within a convenient time without predjudice to any party. But and if the Lord of the soyle please, upon any complaint of appeale or petition, to grant any tryall in law to be made by his prime officers, and twenty four keys agt any formr proceedings or censure by the Spirituallty proceeded in, altho' they have proceeded both in suspencon and excommunication, which is the furthest point of ye law that they can proceed in, but only deliver both the party and cause to the Lords; then we say, it is the 'Lord's prerogative royall', upon the right of his warrant or refference sent over to his Temporall officers for tryall, that the spirituallty do not only surcease, but also absolve, and in law dispense with the party, whereby he may be capable of law, and at liberty to plead for himself; and this we say is the Lord's prerogative, as before, in respect ye party, in that danger running, is only at the Lord's mercy for his body and goods upon tryall, which the Lord at his pleasure may give or take the same without the controulmt of any, for the spirituallty hath no further power over the party or his cause, but as before."
But this ruling was reversed by the following order from Lord Strange in 1628:
"Whereas by the auncient Lawes and Customes of the Island the Lord Bishop hath ever had power, and authoritie to heare, order and determine, all ecclesiastical causes (soe yt the same depend not before him, aboue one yeare, and a day) and to punish all such offenders whatsoever as shall comitt any misdemeanours within or belonging to the Jurisdiction of the Spirituall Courte: Yet nevertheless I am informed by the now Lo: Bpp that you my officers (in repugnancy of his authoritie, and to the overthrowe of the Governmt incident and proper only to his place and ffunction) doe frequently restore psons excommunicated by him, and doe further take upon you ye hearinge and disposition of eccl: causes at yor pleasure not belonging unto you, whereby you doe not only derrogate from the honor of his place, in trenching so farre upon Church governmt, but also hindere mee, and give incouragemt to offenders to neglect his authoritiy: In consideration whereof, and to the end that offenders may be suppressed and duly punished, the auncient eccl govt established and religion ye more advanced; it is my pleasure and express command that you, and every of you henceforth surceass to intermeddle in anie matter or cause belonginge to the Spirituall Governmt (other than with such as by ye Lawes, and customes of ye Island may be Lawfull for you), And yt you suffer him and his servants quietly to pass to and from ye Island as occasion shall require and for ye better incouragement of ye said Lo: Bishop in the full and free execution of his place, and that publick scandall and dangerous example may be avoyded, and that good respect and due obedience may be given him by all, as befitts them to give to one of his callinge."
In 1636, Lord Strange again referred to this subject, and directed that, until further orders, no appeal should thereafter be made to the "Governor of the Isle or the temporal Court there for any cause depending or determined in the Ecclesiastical Courts which do merely concern government of the Church." It will be seen that this order, as Sir James Gell comments, "does not affirm the jurisdiction of York in matters of appeal, nor direct that appeals should not be made to the Lord himself; it professes merely to take away, in certain cases, the right of appeal to jurisdictions inferior to the Lord." This order, as we shall afterwards see, was to be a fruitful source of dispute, both for the above reasons, and also because, the order not being an Act of Tinwald, it might be argued that it was of no legal validity. Cases concerning wills and tuition of infants were also at this time confined to the ecclesiastical courts. Among minor points in dispute was that of the appointment of the sumner-general. Till 1612, this officer seems to have been appointed by the bishop, but in that year the Countess of Derby made the appointment. The bishop's right to do so was, however, confirmed by Lord Strange in 1627, and remained undisputed for a century. Bishop Phillips was also much annoyed by Governor Ireland issuing licences to eat flesh in Lent, by him imposing a fine on parish clerks on entering their office, by his abrogating the oath for swearing on the grave, and by his depriving him of his turbary. Further differences between Church and State were settled, in 1643, as follows:
(1) That the fee of three shillings and four pence, taken by the clergy for distributing the goods of a child under 14 years, should be reduced to sixpence. (2) That the parson or vicar of a parish was to have the nomination of the clerk with the approval of the bishop, as the appointment of clerks by the lord had been complained of. This would seem to have deprived the people of their ancient right of election, for a time, but it was restored by the spiritual laws of 1667. (3) The clergy having taken one shilling for making wills, and having refused to prove wills unless they were written by them, it was ordered that every man may make his own will. (4) It having been stated that the clergy had taken eight shillings as corpse present for goods worth four pounds, and in the same proportion for other values, it was ordered that no corpse present should be taken when goods were under the value of six pounds twelve shillings and four pence, and of that value and under the value of twenty pounds, the corpse present was to be twenty pence, and under forty pounds, three shillings and fourpence, and if forty pounds and above, six shillings and fourpence; and, moreover, only housekeepers and masters were to pay any corbes. (5) Tithe butter and cheese were to be done away with, but, in lieu thereof, payment was to be made on cows, sheep, and goats. The proctors for collecting the harvest tithe were to be named at an earlier date, as farmers had suffered for their non-arrival by their crops wasting in the fields. The clergy were not to be allowed to demand "their small tythes and offering money" on Easter Sunday. For, in this way, "an undecent and irreverent use" had sprung up by their demanding these dues "at the time the people are to receive the Communion . . . and sometimes will stop the people from receiving the blessed sacrament, because they have not paid their duties." It was therefore ordered that they should receive these dues on Monday or Tuesday in Easter Week. Also, it having been complained that orphans' goods and debts had not been sufficiently secured by the spiritual court, it was ordered that, if the bishop or his officers did not take sufficient security, they were to make the loss good. These laws were assented to by the twenty-four Keys, and certain representatives from the parishes.
During the earlier portion of this period, this dispute between Church and State seems to have occasioned some bad feeling. Instances of this are the refusal of a pass to the bishop to go to England by the governor, the threatening by the same authority to fine any one who would address the bishop as "lord bishop", and his placing "a laymen in the chaplain's place to read service to the garrison in scandalous manner, viz. in his doblett and hose and sometime in his livery coat: yea, when a minister or two have been present." Yet this feeling seems to have been merely between the clergy and the lord's officials. For the attitude of the people (whose slowness to adopt the reformed religion we have already discussed) during this period seems to have been, generally, favourable to the Church, though the evidence as to their spiritual condition is conflicting. In 1616, however, there seems to have been some Puritan feeling among them, if we may regard the following as significant: The "clarke of Kk. Micaell" refused to "attend the minister in the Chancell where Divine Service is usually redd," to help him on with his "sirplesse", or to "read the first lesson, all wch are offices usually belonginge to the clarke. But would have the Communion table and the Byble removed down into the body of the church, where he himself sayt, and there onlie he sayd he would doe and execute these services." The next account of the people is derived from Bishop Parre, who, in a letter to Archbishop Neile, written in 1639, stated that he found them "on St John Baptist's day, in a chapel dedicated to that Saint, in the practice of gross superstitions," which he caused "to be cried down," and in the place of them "appointed Divine Services and Sermons". By 1643, according to Lord Derby, they were declaring "that they would have no bishops; pay no tithes to the clergy;" and yet, in the same year, various questions between the clergy and people, in which substantial concessions had been made to the latter, were amicably settled, and, both then, and till after the Restoration, tithes continued to be paid without protest. These are facts which are at variance with the above statement, and which, at a time when the Church in England was in danger of succumbing to the assaults upon it, speak well for the good feeling existing on both sides in Man. Of the further progress of the people in a puritanical direction, we learn from a contemporary observer, who was in Man between 1648 and 1656, that at "ye later end of King Charles his reigne Presbytery began (but as it were peeping up only). They now began to decline, neglecting to frequent ye churches on ye apostles' and saints' festivals, and admitted of preachings in private houses by strangers, whereof I was an eye-witness. . . Notwthstanding, I observed yt ye Manksmen for ye major part are generally very respective (sic) of their clergy, and although those of ye clergy they are severe in their injoyning of tenants, and penaltyes wch they inflict upon delinquents, yet does they punctually perform them wth all obedience and marvelous silence. Their tithes they willingly pay as soon as it is demanded; if any fayle it is through want of means and not for want of will."
Of the actual working of the Church at this period (1539-1651) very little is known. In 1610, 1613, and again in 1629, there were some wise and useful regulations with reference to catechizing, the condut of ministers, keeping of register books, services for fishermen, the registration of wills, regulation of marriages, etc., placed on record. Some of the more important of these are appended.
1610. "In primis, that all members in their several churches do diligently catechize on the Sundays and holy days according to the Book of Common Prayer, provided that some part of the Parish come one day and some another day at the appointment of the Minister till he have gone thro them all, and so from time to time to hold on that course, and let every Minister between the Morning prayer and the high Service question some point of the Catechism with the clerk or some other in the Vulgar tongue for the better edifying of all degrees.
"It: That beneficed persons that are not allowed to preach themselves take order that certain Sermons be preached within their cure yearly by such as be allowed by the Ordinary to preach, viz.: that Parsons and Vicars of thirds do provide six sermons at the least by the year and the Vicars of pension four sermons.
"It: That the minister go not a visitation without the clerk or deputy allowed by the Ordinary for the testification of Wills if they be made; and of this let there be made a publication the next Sabboth (sic) in every several Parish by the Minister.
"It: That there be a register Book kept by every Minister within his several charge, of the Christenings, Marriages and Burials, and that none be churched in houses but in case of necessity and that upon special Licence from the Ordinary, so that no Minister be present at any private contract of youth, never before married unless the Parents, Guardians, or such have charge over them be present and give consent thereunto.
"It: Let reparation be carefully made of the Chancel and Church houses upon the Glebe lands within two years at the furthest, and some preparation towards it in the meantime be done.
"And all the premises to be accomplished upon pain of suspension and sequestration according to Law, unless the Ordinary see just cause to give further time."
1613. "The parson, vicar or minister of the Parish where the Herring fishing is gotten is to repair to the harbour every morning and evening to read them divine service and to deliver them good admonition, wch if he neglect or refuse to do he is to forfeit his Tyth fish the ensuing night, which is to be given to the poor at the Admiral's discretion. And if any person shall neglect to come to the place where such service is to be read, the Admiral or his vice Admiral sets out his flag (wch is the sign or token when they are to observe that duty), to offer their prayers and praises for such blessings, such upon knowledge thereof is to be excluded from the benefit of the fishing that night." And, in 1629, a difficulty having arisen about the respective jurisdictions of the bishop and archdeacon, the bishop ordered that the "spirituall officers to keep our Eccall Courts hereafter in due tyme as wee shall forthwith direct you without Innovacone or broaching of noveltie. Also wee commande you our Registers to have a speciall care to keep severall all the wills, decrees, and acts everie half yeare due and belonginge to the sd severall jurisdicones as of aunciente tyme hath been accustomed." We may note that, in 1607, a decree was issued from the Exchequer at Westminster asserting the jurisdiction of the Crown over the monastic possessions in the Isle of Man, and that, in 1610, possession of them was granted to William, Earl of Derby, and Elizabeth his wife, with the reservation of a certain rent-charge to the Crown.
About the clergy at this period, we learn nothing till 1634, when, according to a "State Paper" endorsed by Archbishop Laud, it would appear that "all the clergy except two or three are illiterate men, brought up in the island in secular professions." And, in 1639, Bishop Parre stated that "most of the Ministers were of no better ability than to read distinctly divine service," that "the Island was destitute of means of learned education", that he had warned the ministers "to be diligent in catechizing," and that "because many of them could not preach," he had introduced the Book of Homilies. But, a few years later, this evidence was contradicted by Blundell, who remarked, "Their ministers are truly not unlearned. I did not converse wth only one, but yt I found him both a scholler and discreet"; and this account is confirmed by Chalenor, who wrote, "Considering the Ministers here are generally natives, and have had their whole education in the Isle, it is marvellous what good Preachers they be". As to their incomes, "nine or ten of the parishes are worth £4, one or two £40, and the rest £20," and "the rectory of Endreas (sic) £60". Under Lord Fairfax, these incomes were greatly increased.
There is but little church-building recorded during this period, such as there is being mainly due to Bishop Parre, who, in 1640, rebuilt the chapel at Ballure, near Ramsey, and, in 1641, was instrumental in building a chapel in Douglas and in repairing the chapel at Castletown, the funds for these last two chapels being raised by assessment on the towns of Douglas and Castletown respectively by order of the Tinwald Court. The general condition of the churches seems to have been very bad, there being entries in the records which tend to show that they were little better than barns, and in a miserable state of repair. But though her buildings were neglected, one most important contribution to the needs of the Manx Church was made at this period, viz. the translation of the Prayer-book into the Manx language by Bishop Phillips "the Mannish Book of Common Prayer by me translated," as he wrote in 1610 of which we will give a short account. Bishop Phillips proposed to have "perused" it with his clergy in that year, "so with one uniform consent to have it ready for the printing," but was "lett and hindered from that and other religious labours" by the Governor of the island. This translation was clearly not approved of by the bishop's contemporaries, as we find Sir W. Norris, vicar-general, stating, in 1611, that he could not "read the same Book perfectly, but here and there a word"; while his colleague, Sir W. Crowe, said "he could upon deliberate perusall therof read some part upon it, and doth verily think that few else of the clergy can read the same Book, for that it is spelled with vowells wherewith none of them are acquainted."
Nor was it better received in the following century, for Sacheverell, writing in 1702, said that it was "scarce intelligible to the clergy themselves, who translate it off-hand more to the understanding of the people." He was followed by Bishop Wilson, who wrote, "It is of no use to the present generation"; and, in 1765, when the Prayer-book was again translated, the translators do not seem to have availed themselves of the earlier version. Yet Bishop Phillips's Manx is, for the most part, easily understood by those who speak Manx at the present day, when read to them.
It is difficult, therefore, to explain the attitude of Phillips's contemporaries, except, perhaps, on the ground of jealousy on account of its being the work of a stranger. As to Sacheverell, it is probable that he acquired his information at second-hand, while it would seem that Bishop Wilson had never perused the MS., the existence of which seems to have been forgotten as early as 1663.
Bishop Phillips's Manx is more phonetic than the modern, and it is a much more direct and simple translation, avoiding the periphrases, circumlocutions, and many of the corruptions which abound in the translation of 1765. The chief divergence between the two translations, as far as actual words are concerned, is in the particles, which are, of course, very important in fixing its idiomatic character. But whatever may be thought of the literary merits of this translation, it remains a monument of painstaking work.
Let us now refer to the bishops during this period. Some Bishop of Man was alive in 1541, as, in that year, he presented to a benefice in the island. But the see had been "sometime vacant through the natural death of the last bishop", when, in 1546, Henry Man, Henry VIII's chaplain, was appointed by patent. Bishop Man had permission to retain, "together with his bishopric, the deanery and dignity of our Cathedral Church of Christ and of the blessed Mary the Virgin, his mother, in our county of Chester, together with the parochial churches of the blessed Mary upon the mount, in our city of Chester, and Fynyngley, in our county of Nottingham," and so it is not surprising that there is no record of his ever having been present in his insular diocese. He seems to have retained the good graces both of Edward VI's guardians and of Queen Mary, as he died, on October 17, 1556, in possession of all his dignities and emoluments. His successor was Thomas Stanley, who was styled Sodoren Episcopus when instituted to the rectory of Wigan on August 9, 1558. He was also called "Bishop of Man and the Owte Isles." How he attended to his diocese may be gathered from a letter from Pilkington, Bishop of Durham, to the Archbishop of Canterbury, in 1564, in which he says "The Bishop of Man liveth here (Durham) at ease and as merry as Pope Joan." After him came John Salesbury, who was not appointed till 1570, when the bishopric had been "some time since vacant by the natural death of Lord Thomas Stanley, the late Episcopal Prelate." This John Salesbury was also Dean of Norwich, Chancellor of Lincoln, and Archdeacon of Anglesea. After his "natural death", John Meryck was appointed in 1576. This bishop affords a welcome contrast to his immediate predecessors, as he visited his diocese occasionally. Nor does he fail to call attention to the fact, as he wrote to Lord Burghley "I came last summer to Wales; having been the year afore in Man; as I am commonly between both: not of my own choice or will; but things are so. Neither hath any bishop my predecessor been otherwise this hundred years." He was governor as well as bishop, and, as he used his authority to advocate the election of the House of Keys, " by the whole consent of the country," instead of, as for some time previously, by the governor's nomination, he was probably very popular. It seems likely, too, that it was through his influence it was ordained, in 1593, that, though the price of cattle had risen, the corbes should not be raised above the old price. John Meryck died in 1599, and was succeeded by George Lloyd,who was translated to Chester in 1604. The only trace of Bishop Lloyd in the ecclesiastical records is that he presided, in 1603, at a Consistory Court, when several offenders against the spiritual law received punishment. John Phillips, who followed in 1605, had been archdeacon since 1587, and he continued to hold that office as well as the bishopric. We have already seen how strenuously he upheld the rights of the Church at a time when the Puritans and their principles were rapidly becoming more powerful. There is no precisely contemporary account of him, but Chaloner, who wrote twenty-five years after his death, and must have been acquainted with those who knew him, speaks of him as a "singularly Learned, Hospitable, Painful and Pious Prelate . . . who out of zeal, to the propagating of the Gospel, attained the knowledge" of Manx "so exactly that he did ordinarily preach in it."
Sacheverell, probably taking his information from Chaloner, states that Phillips was "famous in his generation for his great pains in preaching, his charity, and hospitality, even to the meanest of the people." Wood says that he "was famous for his charity and hospitality." Chaloner is also responsible for the statement that he translated the Bible as well as the Prayer-book, saying that he "undertook that most laborious, most difficult but useful Work, of the Translation of the Bible into Manks; taking to his assistance some of the Islanders; as namely, Sir Hugh Cavoll (Cannell), Minister of the Gospel and now Vicar of Kirk Michael, perfected the said Work in the space of twenty and nine years." Sacheverell mentions this statement of Chaloner's, and remarks that his Bible is "now not extant." Cox, writing in 1720, but merely copying his predecessors, says that he translated "the liturgy and Bible into the Manks language;" and Bishop Wilson writes about the same time that "It has been often said that the Holy Bible was by Bishop Phillips's care translated into the Manks language; but upon the best inquiry that can be made, there was no more attempted by him than a translation of the Common Prayer." Bishop Wilson's evidence, combined with the fact that there is no mention of this Bible in contemporary records, would seem to show that no such translation had been made. To form a just estimate of Bishop Phillips from the scanty material we have been able to accumulate is scarcely possible. But it is at least clear that he was a strong and zealous upholder of the Church and her rights, and that, considering his other appointments, he bestowed considerable attention upon his diocese. The mere fact of his having mastered the Manx language, and of his having translated the Prayer-book into that language, shows that the welfare of his Manx flock was dear to him. In fact, in every aspect in which we are able to view him, he stands conspicuously superior to most of his successors as well as his predecessors, and would seem worthy of a reputation not much inferior to Wilson, Barrow, and Hildesley, and the less known, but probably equally able bishops, Simon, Mark, and Donkan. He died in 1633, at Bishop's Court, and was buried in St. German's cathedral.
The remaining bishops before the Restoration may be briefly dismissed. The connexion of William Foster (1633-35) with this diocese seems to have been confined to his having held a court in Douglas in October 1634. He died in the following February, and was buried at Barrow, Cheshire, of which place he had been rector. It was during his time that it was decided (1633) by a Royal Commission that the proper course of presentation to the Bishopric of Sodor and Man, was for the Earl of Derby to present a candidate to the Crown, and for the Crown to write to the Archbishop of York to consecrate him.
The next bishop, Richard Parre, was a member of a Lancashire family, which was already connected with Man both in Church and State; but he does not seem to have been enamoured of his diocese, as he reported to Archbishop Neile that the "extreme coldness of the country," and his "ruinous house" constrained him "to retire to England for the winter season." In 1637, he endeavoured to raise his rents, which created such a disturbance among the farmers that they appealed to York, "but the court of York upon mature and deliberate consideration" found that it had no jurisdiction in such a case, and the question was ultimately settled by the earl making an order "that the sayd Bishop should confirme the sayd farmers' leases now in being upon consideration of a yearly increase of maintenance from mee." Bishop Parre died in March 1644, and was buried in Bishop Phillips's grave in St. German's cathedral.
As to the income of the bishops, Bishop Meryck states that it was "but 80 lb. in money, wherewith I travail by sea and by land." In another letter he estimated that his income scarcely ever exceeded £100, and that out of this he "should have assigned some portion towards the repairs of the buildings, and something also to him who presides over the law courts (as never a penny is paid by the people to the judge or the functionaries), the remainder . . . is thought there sufficiently magnificent in relation to the other revenues of the Island."
In 1635, the "State Paper" already referred to informs us that the money value of the bishopric was estimated at £140; and the civil records in 1645 estimate the rents at £116, together with "customes," commutable for £2, or rather less, in money, but which seem to have been usually paid in kind, and boon-days, or days of free labour, and "carriages," not estimated. That this income does not seem to have tempted the bishops, with the honourable exception of Phillips, to reside in the island, proof is afforded by a letter of Earl James's, in which he told his son that if he allowed the bishopric to be leased, as had been the usual practice, "he would find few worthy men desirous of the place," as it would be worth so little, and that if he appointed men already beneficed in England, as was also the usual practice, they will seldom live in the Isle."
And now the Manx Church was to be without a bishop for nearly seventeen years, the episcopal office being exercised by the various civil rulers of Man, of whom Earl James was the first. Perhaps one reason of his for not appointing a bishop, was because he was in need of the revenues of the bishopric for paying his military expenses. This view receives confirmation from finding in the civil records shortly after Bishop Parre's death, "a pticular account of ye Rents forth of the Bops spiritualtyes," which shows that these rents were chiefly spent upon the Lord's household, the remainder, together with the "customes," going to the garrisons. But another reason for not appointing would seem to have been that he did not intend to do so till the leases expired, when "the Bishoprick will be worth having."
However this may have been, we find the earl superintending Church as well as State till he left the island in 1651. Thus, in 1644, a dispute having arisen between Sir Patrick Thompson and Sir Thomas Harrison, "touching ye right to ye vicarage of Kk. Braddon," he decided it in favour of the former; and "the chappell of Douglas" being "unfurnished of a preaching minister," he ordained that £10 per annum "be duly paid unto Sir Tho: Harrison for preaching upon Sundaies in ye said Chappell out of ye revenues of ye Bpricke."
It was about this period, too, that he seems to have entertained the idea of establishing an insular university or college, as will be seen from the following letter to his son Charles: "I had a design, and God may enable me, to set up an university, without much charge (as I have contrived it); which may much oblige the nations round about us. It may get friends into the country, and enrich this land." But this design was not to be carried out for nearly two centuries.
The substitution of Lord Fairfax for Lord Derby, as the island was only governed in the name of the Commonwealth from November 2, 1651, to February 23, 1652, made singularly little difference to the Manx Church. There was no bishop, but there had been already a vacancy in this office for seven years; the Book of Common Prayer ceased to be used; a court called "the Wills or Willers Court," constituted of civil magistrates, took the place of the Ecclesiastical Court for the probate of wills; and the punishment of offences against Church discipline was administered by the deemsters instead of the vicars-general; while for the chapter-quests were substituted four men in each parish nominated by the governor and officers. The parish clergy, indeed, benefited by the change, as part of the bishop's income was used "for the better encouragement and support of the ministers of the gospel," who, according to Blundell, received at least £60 each.
The interests of the clergy were in other respects well looked after. Thus, when, in 1659, the officers of the castles quartered soldiers upon them, the governor, Chaloner, declared that they "always have been and should continue to be exempt "from this service, and, in 1658, he ordered that "Sir Hugh Cannell", as being "one of the first preachers in this isle, and the first that taught the Manks to read the Scriptures in the Manks tongue, and assistant to the late reverend father in God John Phillips, Bishopp of this isle, in translatinge of the Bible," should have an increase of £14 to his income. And it is clear that they conformed to the new state of things without any difficulty, as a reference to the names of the rectors and vicars of the various parishes will show that there seems to have been no change among them except by death. For, of the seventeen parishes, no less than nine had the same clergymen both before and after this period, the date of three more being uncertain, while, of the appointments made to fill vacancies, one died, and the other three are still found holding their livings after the Restoration, while the rectory of Andreas, which had been held by Archdeacon Rutter, who had left the island with the Countess of Derby at the end of 1651, remained vacant, the parish being left in charge of a curate.
The remaining part of the bishop's income was used "for the maintaining of free- schooles, i. e. at Castletown, Peel, Douglas and Ramsey." The governors, who lived at Bishop's Court, succeeded to Earl James's control of ecclesiastical arrangements, and they seem to have administered the discipline of the Church in a thorough and satisfactory manner. Thus we find that the four men in each parish, the captain of the parish invariably being one, had instructions to present such as (1) "profane or break the Sabaoth in absentinge him or herselfe from the publike worshipp of God, by loyteringe or using vaine sports and games"; (2) "make or cause anie disorder or tribulation at sermon or prayer time, or that doe quarrel or make anie tumult on the Sabaoth day"; (3) "doe curse, swear, or otherwise blaspheme or take the name of God in vayne " ; (4) "go about to doe anie maner of worke, business, or labour on the Sabaoth day . . . workes of charitie and necessitie always excepted"; (5) "frequent taverns, or ayle houses on the Sabaoth day."
The churchwardens, instead of being elected by the parishioners at the Easter vestry, and sworn in at the Chapter Court, were "chosen by the minister of the parish and the ould churchwardens, within six dayes after the Michalmas courts," and were sworn in by the deemsters. Their oath was almost identical in terms to that previously given, but with the following additions : They were to present their parson, "if it be apprehended that he preach not sound doctrin; if his life and conversation be not agreable to his doctrin," and "if he suffer beere or ayle or wine to be sold in his house;" and they were also instructed "every Sabaoth or Lords day both forenoon and afternoone at the time of publique worship" to "goe . . . to such ayle-houses or places where any persons are drinking at seruice time, or any way neglecting the same (i.e. the service), and to present them."
Both the churchwardens and the four men from each parish were to make their presentments "at the two Sheading Courts in euery year, or the two Head Court days at the farthest . . . unto the Gouernor and officers at the temporall court."
A good indication of the nature of the ecclesiastical authority wielded by the governors is afforded by the following injunction issued by Chaloner, in 1658, to "ye Ministers and Churchwardens of each Church and Chapple within ye Isle: That they shall not suffer or pmitt any Minister of the Isle, or stranger, to officiate within theire severall Churches or Chapples without the leave and express pmition of such Ministers first had and obtained under yer hands in writeinge; Neither shall they pmitt any pson or psons whatsoever not beinge in holy Orders to exercise or use preaching or any pte of gods worpe or service within the said Churches or Chapples upon any accompt or Coloure whatsoever; And for better Execution of this order the Coronner, lockman and all substantiall people of eash pish are herby required to be aydinge and assistinge when ye Minister or Churchwardens shall call upon them in this behalfe; And it is further ordered and injoyned yt noe pson or psons whatsoever shall be prmitted to receive the Lords Supper in any pish but that wherein they live without a Certificatt under ye hand of ye Minister and Churchwardens of such a pish; that such pson or psons stands not presented for nor lyes not under any contumacy or disobedience for any scandalous sinful crime by them committed. And lastly it is hereby ordered and injoyned that this act be fairly entered in the church Register of every pish; and the same to be published openly in the Congregation in every Church and Chapple upon receipt thereof, and also upon ye first Sunday in Lent every year successively: The contrary herof att yor perills."
We also find this governor issuing the following direction for the examination of a candidate for the ministry :
"It is referred unto Parson Robt Parr and Sr Robt Allen, urgently to examine, trye and inquire into ye abilities, iudgemt and conversacon of Mr Henry Harrison, whether he is competently quallified to be admitted unto ye degrees of Deacon and Minister, and to certify me thereof without delay."
On April 27, 1660, Parson Parr and Sir Robert Allen returned favourable testimonials, and the governor endorsed them as follows: "I am very well satisfied wth ye testimonie herein had, and doe ordr yt ye Regr doeRecord these testliiionialls." The candidate having been thus approved, the governor, on the 9th of May, issued the following warrant for his ordination: "These are to require and injoyne any three of the Ministers on the North side of the Isle, to convine themselves upon the 15th day of this instant, May, by the hour of tenn of the clock at the farthest, in the aforenoone of the same day, of which number pson Sr Robert Parr is to be one, for the ordaineing of Mr Henrey Harrison, Deacon and Preest, for wch this shall be your Warrant." It would seem that the ordination of deacon and priest took place at the same time. On the 15th of May, in accordance with the above warrant, we find recorded, "Wee, whose names are subscribed, a select number of the Clergie of this Isle required and injoyned by or hoble governors comission (bearing date 9th of May) to convenie orselves upon the 15th day of the sd month, for the ordaining of Mr Henry Harrison, Deacon and Priest, In obedience to his hors comission, and in case of necessitie to suplie the cure of Kk. German of Peele (voyd by the abnegacon of Mr George Harrison), Wee have this day prfixed met in the psh Church of Jurby, and in solemlie manner after examinacon of the said Mr Henry Harrisons abilitie and sufficientie for Liffe and doctrine, to undertake the cure of souls, we have Ordained him deacon and full minister by exhortacon, praying and imposition of hands according to the Apostles rule, 1 Tim. iv. 14, desiring that the said comission, and or pceedings thereupon be recorded for or discharge, Dat. Maij 15o 1660o. Ro. Parre, John Harrisone, Ed. Crowe, Joh. Huddlestone." To this is affixed the governor's signature, with the endorsement, "Let ye comission and ye proceedings thereupon bee recorded, 15 May, 1660."
Other matters connected with the Church also received strict attention. The tithes were collected as strictly as ever, some who tried to evade the tithe on honey, for instance, being promptly ordered to pay it; and, if we may judge from various enactments in the Records, the fabrics of the churches were not allowed to fall into decay during this period. One of these enactments, issued by the Council and Keys, is to the effect that "the assessment for the reparacon of the churches in this Isle . . . ought to be made on the ffarmers of the quarter-lands according to their respective rents and upon all intack houlders, cottage houlders, Tradesmen and Townes inhabitants according to their abilityes, and this to bee made and levyed by the church-wardens for the tyme being in each yeare"; and another, issued by the governor, did away with the ancient method of making up the "church-yard hedge" by the owner of each treen, which had been generally neglected, and ordered "that the church-wardens of euery year shall out of the assessment of the psh keep in good repaire the church and the church-yard hedge . . . and not to trouble the pshoners to make the said hedge no more than the church, but by paying their assessment."
One result of the administration of the Manx Church between 1652 and 1660 was, if we are to believe Chaloner, that the people bore "a great esteem and reverence to the Publique Worship of God; which they testifie by their seldom absenting themselves from the Church"; while Bishop Wilson, on the other hand, testified that the Manx Church had "during the Great Rebellion suffered in her doctrine, discipline, and worship", but, judging from the evidence given by the Records, we should incline to the former being the more probable view.
1 Statutes, p. 66. It is significant that this action was taken by the State, not by the Church (see p. 120).
2 We may note also that John Stevenson, Vicar of Maughold in 1576, was called "the last popish priest", and his successor, John Christian, in 1580," the first protestant minister," of that parish (Lib. Scacc. 1719).
3 See ch. vi. p. 174.
4 Blundell, Manx Soc., vol. xxvii., p. 166.
5 From Cott. Ms., Manx Soc., vol. iv., p. 98.
6 A computation of the value of the demesne lands of Rushen, made in 1539, when it is referred to as "Russhing late Monastery within the Island of Man" (Manx Soc., vol. ix., pp. 224-6), places their value at about £95, and the whole pension to the retired monks amounted to £24. (Browne Willis, Mitred Abbies, ii. 320).
8 Manx Soc., vol. xxxi., pp. 300-1. As Man had been placed under York by bull of Pope Calixtus in 1458, this looks as though it had again been transferred to Canterbury. But it seems more probable that this Act was simply a sign that Henry VIII ignored the papal authority in this as in other matters.
9 It would be interesting to know what effect such events as the issuing of the thirty-eight articles in 1563, and the thirty-nine in 1571, the formation of the Congregationalists in 1568, and the establishment of Calvinism in Scotland in 1560 to 1572, had upon the Manx Church. Sir James Gell quotes a number of English Acts during the period 1532-1571 chiefly relating to Church questions, which did not apply to Man, and comments- "Many of the provisions in these Acts were inapplicable to the Isle of Man. Firstfruits and tenths are not payable in respect of livings there. At the same time, it is presumed the Reformation was brought about in the island by means of the recognition of some of the Acts; for there are no Acts of the Insular Legislature bearing upon the Reformation." (See Manx Soc., vol. xxxi, p. 297.)
10 We may note that the earliest church register now in existence, that of Ballaugh, was commenced in 1598.
11 The ecclesiastical records of 1610 mention the "Book of Spiritual Laws late delivered in by the Vicars General, (Sir William Norris and Sir William Crow)"; and, in 1680, John Garrison, vicar-general, stated to Bishop Bridgman that Sir W. Norris and Sir W. Crow had received them orally from their immediate predecessor, Sir Henry Gale, and transcribed them "at the request of John Ireland, Lieut.-Governor, on behalf of William, Earl of Derby," and that the laws so transcribed were "owned and received as the Spiritual Laws and Customs of the isle by the said Lieut., 2 Deemsters, and 24 Keys of the Isle under their own hands." He then proceeded to state that they were handed by Bishop Phillips to Bishop Foster and by him to Bishop Parre; Bishop Parre then handed them to Sir John Garrison, his registrar, who handed them to his son and namesake, who gave the above evidence. (In ecclesiastical records.)
12 This is equivalent to the modern dominus given to University B.A.s, but it seems formerly to have been given to vicars and curates, whether they had taken that degree or not, rectors being styled "Mr.," the shortened form of magister (vide Shakespeare, "Sir Oliver Martext, a vicar").
13 The laws of 1610 are to be found at pp. 40-7 in the statute book, those of 1667 being in MS. in the Record Office. The laws of 1667 do not seem to have been confirmed by the Legislature.
14 The bishop's oath, as Baron of the Isle, was as follows:- "Ffirst before God and yor Honr I doe swear and avow that from this day forward, I shall be unto you faithfull and obeydient and faith to you bear, for the Lands, Tenemts and heriditaments wch I clame and hold of you within this Isle: Alsoe that I shall truly yield unto you all the Customs, Rents, and Seruices wch of right I ought to pay for the same, and that at the dayes and hours thereof due and usuall. Soe God me help, &c." (Lib. Plitor., 1577.)
15 See p. 114.
16 See p. 119.
17 In the Lib. Scacc., 1610, there is a decision that they were also to have the tithe of all new boats to the following Easter.
18 See p.127.
19 A similar form of oath is found in the time of Lord Fairfax, but the exact form of the above was not written down till Bishop Wilson's time, though something like it was doubtless in full operation soon after the Reformation. From a MS. in ecclesiastical records.
20 Spiritual Laws, No. 54; see also p.115, where another portion of the oath is given.
21 See p.119.
22 For further details see p.115.
23 According to an order issued by convocation, in the ecclesiastical records, dated 1623, a malicious slanderer was "to remain a Lyer of Record, and do open penance. . . . putting his finger on his mouth, and confessing a Lye in saying ' Tongue, thou Lyed,' and so publickly to ask the party offended forgiveness."
24 Waldron says, "If any person be convicted of uttering a scandalous report, and cannot make good the assertion, instead of being fined or imprisoned, they are sentenced to stand in the Market-place on a sort of scaffold erected for that purpose, with their tongue in a noose of leather, which they call a bridle, and having been thus exposed to the view of the people for some time, on the taking off this machine they are obliged to say three times, Tongue, thou hast lied." (Manx Soc., vol. xi, p.4.)
25 This punishment has often been quoted as showing the great cruelty of Manx Church discipline, but it may be doubted if it was more cruel than the punishment of whipping at a cart's tail as practised in England, and it was certainly not so indecent.
26 They must be married at once.
27 See pp.103-4.
28 Bishop Wilson writes, "People are never excommunicated but for crimes that will shut them out of heaven." (Manx Soc., vol. viii., p.112.)
29 Manx Soc., vol. xviii., pp. 112-13.
30 [Manuscript amendment. - Ed.]
31 Somewhat, perhaps, like that exercised by the Court of Chancery for the benefit of infants in England.
32 The English rule under similar circumstances favours the Crown, but makes no mention of orphans.
33 Keble, p. 202.
34 See p.127, note 2.
35 Most of the following information is taken partly from Keble's Life of Bishop Wilson, and partly from "The Constitution of the Isle of Man," Manx Soc., vol. xxxi.
In accordance with the churchwardens' oath, these were (1) parishioners who "prophane the Lord's day by habitually neglecting to come to church; by behaving themselves irreverently there; by resorting on that day to the alehouse, to gaming or sporting, or doing any works (except such as are of necessity or charity)." (2) "Parents of those children under the age of fourteen years, who prophane the Lord's day by playing, gaming or sporting," and who "do not send their children to be catechized." (Those who neglected Saints' days were treated in the same way.) (3) "Those of sixteen years old and over who do not attend the Holy Communion. ' (4) Any "Moar, Serjeant, Proctor, or any other person," who "shall on the Lord's day presume to receive any rent or sums of money." (5) "All such as commit fornication, adultery, incest, or the like." (6) "All such as are guilty" of "cursing, swearing, and taking God's name in vain." (7) "All such as are given to drunkenness or tipling, and such as carry tales from house to house, and that sow discord betwixt one person and another." (8) Those who "pretend to sorcery, charms, or witchcraft," and those who resort to them. (9) "All such as pay not the church assesment," &c. They had also to keep a watch upon their parson and upon the clerk to see that they did their duty (see pp. 107-8), and to present them if it were not done.
For changes in these courts, see ch. x p. 275.
The attorney-general is now the bishop's steward. The other baronies had similar courts, which were conducted by their proprietors, or their stewards, with the assistance of one of the deemsters, and the comptroller and the clerk of the rolls, who received a compensation for their attendance ; the attorney and receiver-general were also occasionally present. These courts seem to have exercised an authority in their several districts, equal to the whole of that possessed by the Common Law and Sheading Courts, performing the business of Courts Baron in the admission and enrolment of tenants, by means of peculiar setting quests of their own, and taking cognizance, likewise, in a manner similar to the mode of procedure in the Common Law Courts, and with the like traverse to a second jury and the Keys of all actions of whatever kind, where the defendant belonged to the respective baronies. These baronies had also their courts of Criminal Judicature, in which all felonies committed by persons resident in any of these baronies, who were not tenants to the Lord Proprietor, were cognizable, and tried by a jury of twelve men, selected from the tenants of the barony, in the same manner that other felonies were in the Court of General Gaol Delivery (Manx Soc., vol. xxxi., p. 41).
Bishop Wilson wrote of the bishop's court as follows: The bishop has this peculiar privilege, "that if any of his tenants be guilty of a capital crime, and is to be tried for his life, the bishop's steward may demand him from the lord's bar, and try him in the bishop's court by a jury of his own tenants; and in case of conviction, his lands are forfeited to the bishop, but his goods and person are at the lord's disposal" (Manx Soc., vol. xviii., p. 107). The Abbot of Rushen had the same privilege. The business of all these baron courts is now entirely confined to manorial matters.
The chief ecclesiastical officers are said to have had seats in the Court of General Gaol Delivery (see Manx Soc., vol. xxxi., p. 45).
Manx Soc., vol. xviii, p. 117.
"The ecclesiastical law of the island is in many respects different from that of England; and the ecclesiastical courts of the island have a jurisdiction in temporal matters much more extensive than that which was exercised by the English ecclesiastical courts, at any rate since the Reformation" (Sir James Gell, Manx Soc., vol. xxix, p.36).
And within three years for foreign debts.
See Manx Soc., vol. xxxi., pp. 44-5. There is now no ecclesiastical prison, or power to commit to one.
This officer has now ceased to exist.
As to the questions with which this discipline was concerned, at that time, we learn from the statute book, in 1594, that the vicars-general were ordered, at Tinwald, to empanel juries in each sheading to inquire into all offences committed against the spiritual laws, and that the following instructions were given them to be laid before these juries: that they "inquire and present (1) if there be any in the Isle do use Witchcraft or sorcerie; (2) all Adulterers, Fornicators, Blaspheamers, Drunkards and such like; (3) all such as carry bells or banners before the Dead, or pray upon the graves of the Dead; (4) all such as shall keep any markett on the Sabboth day, or otherwise profane the same; (5) if there be any person or persons within this Isle that refuse to come to the church to hear Divine Service, or to receive the blessed Sacrament of the Lord's Supper." (Statutes, p. 66.)
See also pp. 171-4.
The earliest penalty recorded was in 1595, when John Christian, minister of Kk. Maughold, was fined three shillings and fourpence "for presumptuously eating fflesh upon Fryday" (Lib. Scacc.).
In 1613, certain parishioners of Lonan were sent to St German's prison by the vicars-general without being informed of the charge against them. They consequently appealed to the "Staff of government," when it transpired "that they were one Sunday absent from Divine Service." (Lib. Scacc.) They were thereupon released by the civil power in spite of the bishop's protest.
Lib. Scacc., 1585.
"A Book containing the answere of the officers, Deemsters, Viccars-generall, and 24 keyes to certain Articles objected by Iohn now Bishop of this Isle against Iohn Ireland, Esq., Lievetennante and Captain of the Isle of Mann" (in ecclesiastical records).
See ch. iv p. 91.
This view was afterwards controverted by Bishop Wilson. See p.197.
Statutes, p. 85.
Sir J. Gell. Manx Soc., vol. xxxi, p. 302.
Two of the clergy were fined for declining to publish the countess's precept appointing him (Lib. Scacc.).
It had been (in 1609) decided by the Legislature that "the manner of swearing upon the graves of the dead with compurgators" was "not fitting or christian-like"; it was therefore abolished, it being ordered that such controversies were "to be tried according to forme of law, by witness or otherwise, first in the spirituall within the twelvemonth and then in the temporall court" (Statutes, p.72). This practice, nevertheless, continued for fully a century later.
"Articles objected" by Bishop Phillips. See p.123.
See pp. 97-8.
Lib. Scacc. The deemsters decided that for such offences the clerk "is not only punishable by the Ordinary but fineable to the Lord in xls provided he be forborn with and allowed for the first offence of that kind." See also Liber Chancell., 1616.
Manx Soc., vol. iii p.12.
See pp. 131 and 152.
Blundell, Manx Soc., vol. xxvii pp.166-7.
We may note that in 1610, one of the clauses in an Act of Tinwald was to the effect "that none be admitted to Fish from Saturday Morning till 7 at Night, after Sun-set, upon Pain of Forfeiture of his Boat and Netts" (Statutes, p. 75).
For sundry documents relating to these questions see State Paper Office, Scotland, Manx Soc., vol. ix pp. 89-95, and "Rot. Pat.", Manx Soc., pp.99-125.
This is now worth £525 per annum.
In ecclesiastical records, marked No. cclxv 45, p.47.
Letter to Archbishop Neile in ecclesiastical records. MS note, ibid.
Manx Soc., vol. xxvii p. 167.
Ibid., vol. x p. 18.
State Paper already quoted.
See p. 146.
This chapel was called "St Mary's." The existence of this chapel is clear from the Records (see p.145), yet Blundell (Manx Soc., vol. xxv p. 76) writes, "Ye greatest want the townsmen of Douglas are sensible of is . . . a church for divine service."
The printing thus hindered has been delayed to our own day.
Letter to the "Earle of Salisburie," from copy in ecclesiastical records.
From "Articles objected by Bishop Phillips." See p. 123.
Manx Soc., vol. i p. 1.
Ibid., vol. xviii p. 100.
See p. 157.
Perhaps Bishop John Howden. See pp. 95-6.
See p. 99.
Foedera, Manx Soc., vol. ix., p. 38.
The idea that Robert Ferrar, Bishop of St. David's from 1548 to 1555, when he was martyred, had been Bishop of Man, seems to have been originated by Baker, who stated in his Chronicle, originally published in 1640 (p. 321, ed. 1730), that he was bishop of that island at the time of his death. Le Neve, and others who have written about the Manx bishops, perceived that this was a mistake, but fell into another by stating that he was translated from Man to St. David's in 1546. This is shown to be erroneous by a reference to the index of Archbishop Cranmer's original Register in Lambeth Library, which records that the nomination and consecration of Dr. Ferrar to St. David's took place on the 9th of September, 1548, at Chertsey (a copy of this document has been sent to the writer by the courtesy of the Archbishop of Canterbury, but it is unfortunately too long for insertion here). It is clear, therefore, that Ferrar could not have been a bishop before 1548, and the statement that he was translated from Man in 1546 is negatived by the fact that if it were so, the see could not have been "sometime vacant through the natural death of the last bishop" (Manx Soc., vol. ix., p. 38), when Henry Man was appointed Bishop of Man in the same year. What seems to have led all these writers astray was Ferrar's signature "Men," the contraction for "Menevensis," St. David's, which they read "Man."
Note that this patent was issued without any reference to the lord of the isle, and was, according to the report of the Commissioners in 1633, "a Donation not by congdeslier, as is directed by the Statute, which might be by a title fallen during the Wardenship of the Earl of Derby, who came to full age about the time when there was a difference between the Bishop of Rome and the King" (Foedera, Manx Soc., vol. ix., p. 135).
Foedera, Manx Soc., vol. ix., pp. 38-41.
This, according to Browne Willis, Manx Soc., vol. xviii., p. 140, is the date on his tombstone in St. Andrew's Undershaft church in London.
We may note that there was a Thomas Stanley Governor of Man from 1562 to 1568. He was, therefore, perhaps governor as well as bishop (see p. 96, note 1).
History of Church and Manor of Wigan, p. 131 (Chetham Soc., 1888).
Duchy of Lancaster Pleadings, 2 Eliz., vol. ii., S. No. 2.
Baines's History of Lancashire, vol. ii., p. 100.
Patent approving Lord Derby's appointment. Foedera, Manx Soc., vol. ix.. p. 14. According to Kennett (Lansdowne MSS. British Museum), he died in 1568.
"The Royal Assent, upon the presentation to the Bishopric of the Isle of Man," Foedera, Manx Soc., vol. ix., pp. 62-4.
Lansdowne MSS., Manx Soc., vol. ix., p. 74. The meaning of this last sentence is not clear.
Lib. Chancell., 1581. See also Manx Soc., vol. xxxi., p. 67.
From this date we learn the dates of the appointments of the bishops from the insular records.
It is recorded in 1596 that he complained of a portion of his turbary being taken away, and on reference of the question to a jury it was returned to him. Lib. Scacc.
Manx Soc., vol. x., pp. 9 and 15.
Manx Soc., vol. i., p. 91.
Athenaeum, Oxford, vol. ii.
Manx Soc., vol. xviii., p. 89.
Ibid., vol. xviii., p. 124.
He was Archdeacon of Cleveland, and held two English livings.
Browne Willis, Manx Soc., vol. xviii., p. 141.
Foedora, Manx Soc., vol. ix, pp. 137-9.
This would not pass muster now that climatic conditions are better understood.
From copy of letter in ecclesiastical records.
These farmers for urging "an appeal at York, contrary to the Lord's order, prerogative and Lawes of the Island, are ordered to acknowledge their fault at the Tynwald Hill, and to pay a fine of £6 13s. 4d." (Lib. Scacc., 1637).
Lansdowne MSS., Manx Soc., vol. ix., p. 74.
Manx Soc., vol. iv., p. 98.
No. cclxv. 45, p. 47. See p.134.
Derby, Manx Soc., vol. iii., pp, 18, 19.
See p. 144.
Derby, Manx Soc., vol. iii., p. 19. Blundell (Manx Soc., vol. xxvii., p. 48) states that he bestowed the bishop's revenue on the clergy, but this cannot be maintained in opposition to the Records.
Derby, Manx Soc., vol. iii., p. 19.
All notices about Church matters at this time (1651-60) are found in the civil records.
Chaloner, Manx Soc., vol. x p. 18.
Manx Soc., vol. xxvii p.167.
Lib. Scacc. This is probably incorrect. See p. 141.
"Diocese of Sodor and Man," Manx Soc., vol. xxix.
Chaloner, ManxSoc., vol. x p. 18.
These men also presented civil offences, and seem to have been of a better class than the churchwardens and chapter-quests were usually composed of. See p. 146.
See pp. 106 and 115.
Among cases decided by this court we find a curious one about a woman who had been accused of witchcraft, charminge or sorscerie," and, being acquitted by the jury, had to declare her "innocencie " in church (see Malew Register, in Manx Note-Book, vol. ii., p. 135) ; also a decree for the separation of a man and his wife "from bedd, boord and cohabitation, but not from the bands of matrimonie, untill it shall please God to put them into a milder and more charitable frame of spirit."
In 1655, Castletown chapel was repaired by assessment on the people by order of the governor and officers.
Lib. Scacc., 1657.
See Ballaugh Register, 1600, quoted in Manx Names, p. 162. There are, on an average, ten treens in each parish.
Lib. Scacc., 1660.
Manx Soc., vol. x, p. 11.
Quoted by Keble, p. 52.