History Of Brighton And Environs - Online Book

From The Earliest Known Period To The Present Time.

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9
Burrell,* and the latter, with the consent of the representa­tives of the Shirley family, removed the slab to Southover Church, and placed near it an inscription, stating the circumstances under which it was found. Scarcely any antiquarian discovery in England during the last century excited so much interest as did this last relic of Gundrada. But a still more remarkable incident connected with Gundrada's bones occurred in the year 1845 : in the formation recently of the South Coast Rail­way, which crosses the site of the Lewes Priory, the excavators engaged in the work found, at no great distance from the surface, the identical leaden coffins alluded to, inscribed respectively with the names Gvndrada and Willemus. These with their contents were, by the antiquarian zeal of the neighbourhood, preserved, and a subscription raised for the erection of a sacellum, attached to Southover Church. At length the bones of the Conqueror's daughter, so long divorced from the memorial which had covered them, found themselves again beneath it. The history, then, of Gundrada's mortal remains is as follows: originally buried 1085, re-interred about 1145, separated from their tombstone 1537, tombstone brought back to Southover 1775, re-deposit of the bones under the original memorial 1846.
We find it stated (9th year of Edward II.'s reign) that John, Earl of Surrey, for want of heirs of his own body settled the Lordship of Brighton on that king, only reserving his life interest in it and his other estates. From the Crown it passed to the Earls of Arundel, one of whom, Richard, being attainted in the reign of King Richard II., his estates were seized and this Lordship with several others were given at that time to Thomas Mowbray, then created Duke of Norfolk,
* The Grandfather of the present Sir Percy Burrell and Walter Wyndham Burrell, Esq., the present Sheriff of the County, and who left all his manuscripts to the British Museum.
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