Highways and Byways in Sussex - online book

An illustrated appreciation, of the most interesting districts in Sussex.

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234
A GIANT TROUT
CHAP.
Thomas Marchant was buried September 17, 1728.
Less than two miles west of Hurstpierpoint is Albourne, so hidden away that one might know this part of the country well and yet be continually overlooking it. The western high road between Brighton and London passes within a stone's throw of Albourne, but one never suspects the existence, close by, of this retired village, so compact and virginal and exquisitely old fashioned. It is said that after the execution of Charles I Bishop Juxon lived for a while at Albourne Place during the Civil War, and once escaped the Parliamentary soldiers by disguising himself as a bricklayer. There is a priest's hiding hole in the house.
Some three miles north of Albourne is Twineham, another village which, situated only on a by-road midway between two lines of railway, has also preserved its bloom. Here, at the end of the seventeenth and beginning of the eighteenth centuries, at Hickstead Place, a beautiful Tudor mansion that still stands, lived Richard Stapley, another of the Sussex diarists whose MSS. have been selected for publication by the Sussex Archaeological Society. I quote a few passages :
"In ye month of November, 1692, there was a trout found in ye Poyningswish, in Twineham, which was 29 inches long from ye top of ye nose to ye tip of ye taile; and John fflint had him and eat him. He was left in a low slank after a fRood, and ye water fell away from him, and he died. The fish I saw at John fflint's house ye Sunday after they had him: and at night they boiled him for supper, but could not eat one halfe of him; and there was six of them at supper; John fnint and his wife Jane, and four of their children ; and ye next day they all fell on him again, and compassed him."
Here we have the spectacle of a good man struggling with accuracy :" August 19th, 1698. Paid Mr. Stheward fcr Dr. Comber's paraphrase on ye Common Prayer, 20s. and 6d. for carriage. I paid it at ye end of ye kitchen table next ye
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