[From Manx Soc vol X, Challoner's Treatise,1656]
SAINT Patrick, by Nation a Brittain born in the year of our Lord God, 372, in the utmost limits of the Roman Province in Brittain, between the City of Glascow and Dunbarton-Castle, at a place called Kirk-Patrick, or Kill-Patrick; his Parents Calphurinus a Deacon, who was the son of Potitus a Presbyter; his Mother Conca of Pannonia - now Austia and Hungarie, and Sister to St. Martin the renowned Bishop of Tours. He was educated in the study of the holy Scriptures, within his own Countrey; but by travelling into the parts beyond the Seas, he much encreased in the knowledge thereof; for there he was a disciple to his Uncle St. Martyn, who conferr'd Sacerdoticall Orders upon him; as also to St. Germane, Bishop of Auxerre; and by Amator the immediate predecessour of St. Germane, in that See made a Bishop ,and by him named Magonius; whereas in his Christendome his name was Suchat: He travell'd through all Italy, abiding at Rome a long time; where he became a Canon of Lateran; by which means he became also very expert in the Roman Tongue, in Ecclesiastical Government and regular Discipline: By Pope Caelestine he was constituted the Apostle and Metropolitane of Ireland, and by him nam'd Patricius; havring for his assistants in that sacred Expedition, Secundinus, Auxilius and Iservinus, Canons of Lateran; by his constant preaching, his frequency in prayer, watchings and Fasts often; by the holinesse of his life, and the blessing of God upon his pious endeavours, and happy successe in converting the Irish to the Faith, entitled by way of Excellency, Saint Patrick.
This St. Patrick, in or about the year of our Lord God 432, arriving in Ireland, and finding the Harvest great, and the Labourers few, he returned into Brittain for more help; and returning again for Ireland with a purpose to convert this and the other Islands to the Faith, in his passage thither, he came ashore in this Isle, converted it to the Faith, and placed a Bishop there; (24) namely, Germanus his Disciple, a Canon of Lateran, a holy and wise man; introducing with all the Liturgie of Lateran, composed by Mark the Evangelist; erecting his Episcopal Seat in Patrick's Isle, (now Peele-Castle) because St. Patrick had for some time there made his abode; and this was in the year 447, and that was (be it for the honour of this Isle now remembred) 150 years at the least before the Conversion of the English Saxons:
Next by the appointment of St. Patrick succeeded Conindrus or Connidrius and Romulus fellow-Bishops, in whose time there arrived in this Isle one Macfil, alias Maguil or Machalilus; (20) who in a Leathern Boat putting to Sea, and endeavouring Northward, fortuned to be cast upon this Isle; the said Bishops receiving him with admiration and pity, both in regard of the hazards he had run at sea, as for the strangenesse of his habit; and instructed him in the faith; who excelling in piety, succeeded the said Bishops in this Isle, and built a Town therein, which beareth his name (as hereafter shall be remembred) to this day. And this I find of their Conversion, and of the ancient Bishops.(26) In after-times this Island, and the Hebrides or Western Iles of Scotland, being possess'd by the Norwegians, there was but one Bishop of this and the said Isles, who was stiled Bishop of Man or Sodor, from a Village call'd Sodor in St. Columb's Isle, where anciently there had been a Bishops Seat for that and the rest of the Western Isles; (27) the first of which was Wermundus alias Wimundus; who for his cruelty was banish'd the Isle, and had his eyes put out ;(28) then began they to be consecrated by the Metropolitane of Norway, that is, of Trondheim; before, by the Archbishops of York; because it lay nearer to England then to Ireland, and had belong'd thereto in ancient time: After Wermundus, succeeded John, a Monk of Sais.(29) And in the year 1247, one Symon sate Bishop, who departed this life at Kirk Michael; in which Parish now is, and it seemeth then was, the Bishops Pallace, call'd Bishops Court;he was buried in St. Patrick's Isle in the Church of St. Germane, the Cathedrall Church of this Isle, which he began to build: And this Isle and the rest coming under the subjection of the Scots in 1266,Scotland then wanting Archbishops, the Bishop did receive confirmation and consecration in Norway.(30) In the year 1348, William Russell, a Native, and Abbot of St. Mary of Rushin, was elected Bishopby the Clergie, who resorting to Pope Clement the 6th at Avignion, was the first Bishop that was consecrated and confirmed by the Pope.(31)
In our Times, there have sate two Bishops very eminent for Piety and Learning; The first was Dr.Philips,(32) a Native of Wales; educated in Oxford, who out of zeal to the propagating of the Gospel, attained the Manks Tongue, and did not onely preach in it, but translated the Bible into it, (as before hath been remembred) which by his death never came to the Presse, so that the Ministers read the Scriptures to the people in the Manks, out of the English;
The other was Dr. Parr,(33) a Lancashire man, sometime Fellow of Brasen-nose Colledge in Oxford, who whilest he continued in the University, was very painfull to my own knowledge, being myself of the same Colledge, in reading the Arts to young Schollers; and afterwards having cure of Souls, no lesse industrious in the Ministry.
And here it may be observed, that after this Isle came to be possessed by the English, this Bishoprick was divided into two: the one of this place, who retained still his name of Bishop of Man or Sodor; the other of the Isles, whose seat was in Jona orSt. Columb's Isle; this, belonging to the See of York; the other, to that of Glascow.
The Bishops in our time have been elected by the Lords of the Isle, without whose confirmation the Leases made by the Bishops were not valid in Law; they were in the quality of their chiefest Barons; the Bishops ordering matters Ecclesiasticall with the suffirage of the Archdeacon and Vicar-General; for the substance in such manner as hath been used in England.
There was anciently a multiplicity of Chappels (34)in
this Isle; which generally in all other places as well as here, were
the Originals of Parish Churches; which are now in number 17,
Kirk-Christ Rushen, Mr. Thomson(35) an English man, Minister, sometime Schoolmaster at Castleton, so called, because built on the side of a Rushy bog.(36)
Kirk Arborie, because formerly surrounded with Trees Arbour-like, Sir John Crelling(37) Minister; and here observe once for all, that the Ministers who are Natives, have alwaies this Addition of Sir, unlesse they be Parsons of their Parish (of which there are but few; most of the Parsonages being impropriate to the Lord of the Isle or Bishop) and then instead of Sir, they have the Addition of Parson.
Kirk Malew, because dedicated to St. Malew, Sir Thomas Parr (38) Minister.
Kirk-Santon, because dedicated to St. Anne, void, because of the displacing of old Sir John Coshenham.(33)
Kirk-Bradan; Bradan in Manks signifieth a Salmon; and that Church hath that name, either because it is built by the Salmon River, or because dedicated to a Saint of that name; why may it not be so named from one of the Bishops, Brocadius or Brachanus the sons of Tigris, St. Patricks sister, Sir Patrick Thomson, Minister.
Kirk-Concan, because dedicated to Conca, the Mother of St. Patrick, Sir John Woods Minister.
Kirk-Lomman, because dedicated to Lomanus, another of the sons of Tigris, and the first Bishop of Trim in Ireland, Sir James More Minister,
Kirke Maughold to Maughold, being Bishop here, as is before remembred, Sir Robert Allen, Minister.
Kirk-Maroune to that Saint, Sir William Oates Minister.
Kirke Patrick of Peel, because within the Castle of the Peel and dedicated to St. Patrick, Sir Thomas Harrison Minister.
Kirk-Germane to that Saint, being the first Bishop here, also within the said castle; Sir William Coshenham (40) Minister
Kirk-Michael to St. Michael the Archangell, Sir Hugh Cannell, Minister, assistant to Bishop Philips in translating of the Bible.
Saint Mary of Ballaugh,so called, because dedicated to St. Mary: Ballaugh signifies in Manks, Mire-town, because it is situated in a place, that formerly was a bog, Mr. Robert Parr,(41) Parson, to whom I was beholden for some derivation of places.
Kirk-Patrick of Jurby; this Church was dedicated to St. Patrick; and to distinguish it from Kirk-Patrick of Peel, it is called St. Patrick of Jurby; and Jurby is the name of that Land, whereon it is erected, Sir William Crow Minister.
Kirk-Andrew, because dedicated to St.Andrew, Sir John Huddlestone (42) the present Curate. This Parsonage belong'd alwaies to the Archdeacon. Kirk Bride, because dedicated to St.Bridget, who received the Vail of Virginity of St.Patrick, or from some of his disciples, when she was not full 14. years of age; a Virgin highly remarked in her time for sanctity; and born in the province of Ulster, and Abbesse of a Cell within the city of Killdare, Mr. John Harrison, Parson.
Kirk-Christ le Ayre, called le Ayre, to distinguish it from Kirk Christ-Rushen, and because it is placed in a sharp Ayr; Sir Edward Crow, (43) Minister.
There have been three Monasteries in this Isle, the chiefest of which was the Priory of Rushen, which sprang out of that of Furnesse in Lancashire, founded 1134, by King Olaus the first of that name, who endowed it with considerable Rents and Liberties; the Fabrick of which by the wines thereof, appeareth to have been none of the meanest; and which was the Sepulture of their Kings. There was also the Priory of Douglas, and a house of the Friers-minors at Bimaken.(45)
Now that Episcopacy, with the Ecclesiasticall Jurisdiction accompanying the same, is put down in England, the same is also by their example laid here aside; and the Bishops Lands and Jurisdictions are thereupon devolved to the Lord of the Isle; who for the better encouragement and support of the Ministers of the Gospel, and for the promoting of Learning, hath conferr'd all this revenue upon the Ministers; (46) as also for the maintaining of Free-Schooles i.e. at Castletown, Peel, Douglas, and Ramsey; and considering the Ministers here are generally Natives, and have had their whole education in the Isle, it is marvailous to hear what good Preachers there be; and truly, for about 50 or 60 years last past, their Bishops have been persons of singular piety, (47) frequent Preachers, excellent Patterns for the Clergie under them to take out by;
The proving of Wills, (48) prophanation of the Lords Day, Drunkennesse, swearing, Incontinencie and the like, are to fall under the Cognisance of the Civill Magistrate.
The Devotion of the Kings of this Isle was extended beyond their own Jurisdictions; insomuch, that they had conferred Tithes or lands in this Isle upon severall Monasteries without the bounds thereof (i.) upon the Priory of St. Bees, or de Sancta Bega in Cumberland; (ii.) upon the Abby of Whittern in Scotland, sometime the Episcopal Seat of St.Ninianus; and (iii.) upon the Abby of Banchor in Ireland. For this cause the Prior and Abbots of these Houses were Barons of Man, and were obliged to give their attendance as such, upon the Kings and Lords thereof, when soever they should require it; or at the least upon every new succession in the Government, upon the penalty of forfeiting their said respective Interests.(49)