KIPLING'S SUSSEX - online book

An illustrated descriptive guide, to the places mentioned in
the writings of Rudyard Kipling.

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Chapter XIII
Selsey (the Seal's Island) is the name of the peninsula directly south of Chichester, and stretching to Selsey Bill, the most southerly point in the county. The peninsula forms the hundred of Manhood (Mainwood) which name brings to mind Kipling's poem, " Eddi's Service." Among all the poets of the last few years it would be difficult to find verses so utterly naked of any decoration, and yet so pleasing. The poem tells how a Saxon priest, Eddi, held a Christmas mid­night service in his chapel, but as the night was tempestuous and the flock was occupied with the Yule-tide festivities, not a soul entered the church at Manhood End. Eddi lit the altar candles and proceeded with his " Father's business," singing the Mass, and preaching the good word to a congregation consisting of a marsh donkey, and a yoke-weary bullock, who wandered in, attracted by the light at the open door. When the Saxon
people made game of the holy man for his softness
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