THE PROVINCIAL HISTORY OF ENGLAND. XXIV.—SUSSEX AND SOTJTH SURREY.—SAXON PERIOD.
ANDERIDA appears as one of the fortresses of the Comes of the Saxon Shore or March in Britain, and as garrisoned by a company of the Abuki, whoever these may have been_ What the exact nature of this Saxon March was must remain a doubtful point, nor can we say with certainty that the name- implies a Saxon occupation. It seems, however, at any rate, to imply a state of things similar to that in which the eastern coast of Britain was placed during the Scandinavian invasions of a subsequent period, and bearing this in mind, there seems every probability of considerable occupations as well as incessant attacks on the "Saxon Shore" at an early period, by the miscellaneous populations included in the vague name Saxon. It would only be in harmony with what we know to have taken place elsewhere in Britain, if the Roman Emperors transplanted some tribes from the Continent to this part of the coasts of Britain, to serve as auxi- liaries against native insurrections or foreign invasions. When the Imperial central authority became the prey of rival chiefs, nothing would be more probable than that the occupants of the Saxon Shore would take a part in the struggle, and some dim and dis- torted recollection of these contests may be embodied in the- stories of the Saxon conquests of South Britain handed down to us. To secure the Roman fortresses within this. district would be among the first efforts of these "Saxons," and accordingly we find the siege and fall of Anderida spe- cially mentioned in the Saxon legends. Among these we find the following statements, which must be referred to the Province of which we are now speaking. "477—In this year Elle came to. Britain, and his three sons, Cymen, Wlencing, and Cissa, with three ships [the usual number in all these Saxon legendary inva- sions], at the place which is named Cy meneaora, and there slew many Wales, and drove some in flight into the wood which is named Andresdes-Leaga [or Andresdes-Lea]. 485—In this yeas Elle fought against the Walas [or Wealas], near the bank of Markredes-Burne. 491 [or 490]—In this year Elle and ass.% besieged Andresdes-Ceaster, and slew all that dwelt therein ; not even one Briton was there left." Such is the brief legendary record of the Saxon occupation of Sussex in its earliest form. Bede tells us that Elle became Bretwalda, i.e., paramount over the Saxons in Britain ; and supposing such a Saxon chief to have assumed the old title of Comes of the Saxon Shore, this may really have been the ease. A contemporary of Bede's (2Edde) also tells us that this Province, in consequence of the great number of its. rocks and the density of its woods, remained unconquerable by the other Provinces. We are told that Cissa succeeded his father, Elle, and died at the age of 117, and that his posterity continued to reign among the South Saxons—as the people of Mlle were subsequently called ; and then this Province is left devoid of even, a legendary history for 130 years. Henry of Huntingdon, in- deed, amplifies—possibly from early Saxon legends—the account. of the taking of Auderida, but the story of the struggles of the Saxon Shore men and the Romanized Regni, and the condition of the Province under its new lords, must be left to imaging- don. At the close of this unknown period we find it playing part in the struggles between the West Saxons and Mercians, and dependent alternately on each, as the fortune of war vacil- lated between them. In the year 680 we are told that Ethelwealh,
Wall here of Mercia the Isle of Wight and part of Hampshire, and gave assistance to Eadric, King of Kent, against a usurper. /Ethel- wealh, we are also told, was succeeded in Sussex by another Eadric, FEMALE SUFFRAGE.
who, like him, fell in battle against the West Saxons. The Princes [To THE EDITOR OF THE "SPECTATOR."] of Sussex seem gradually to have become sub-kings to those of S. D. C." appears to have surrendered the point in dispute Wessex, their names occurring in charters in connection with the between us when she says, "I should be glad to see some wider latter, just as we find was the case with the tributary Kings of the opening than now exists for the political influence of women. It Hwiccas. How far Surrey obeyed the same ruler with Sussex is has been suggested that under Mr. Hare's system of personal re- doubtful. It appears to have been divided into two kingdoms, presentation women might combine to seat a few members, and one of which comprised what we have called South Surrey ; and thus ensure special attention to any measure that seemed important this, at any rate, probably followed the fortunes of Sussex. North to them ; and if a large proportion of Englishwomen were prepared Surrey, there can be little doubt, had a separate history, which to work out such a plan, it might possibly lead to useful results." connected it with Middlesex and Wessex. The kingdom of Sussex In order to do this they must be allowed to vote, which is just continued a semi-dependent but separate State until the reign of what we want. The question—who are tit to be electors? is totally Egbert of Wessex, when (in the year 803) it is said to have been different from the one—shall persons or places be represented ? and more completely amalgamated with the Kingdom of the West I do not see the relevancy of introducing the latter into the pre- Saxons, and henceforward, with Kent and other smaller States, it sent discussion. Judged by the qualifications demanded from was frequently granted as an appanage with the regal title to the male electors, in whom ability to read and write is not deemed eldest son of the reigning King of Wessex. It was one of the essential, I believe that ordinary, average Englishwomen are fit to kingdoms which fell to the share of JEtheibert on the death of have votes. "S. D. C." maintains that they are not. Then she lEthelwalf in 857, and was soon reunited under him with the rest says she would allow them to vote under a system which would
of the Kingdom of the West Saxons. enable them to combine to seat a few members, but not give them The Scandinavian invasions during the reigns of the successors the indiscriminate vote now demanded, which would not tend to of Egbert must have inflicted sufferings on Sussex and South give any visible effect to the wishes of women.
Surrey, as well as on the other parts of England, but we "S. D. C." appears to test the fitness of the women whom it have no special accounts referring to this Province. In Athel- is proposed to enfranchise, not by the standard of the existing stan's reign there were two mints at LEWES, one at HASTINGS, qualification, but by that of some imaginary communiiy, where and another at CHICHESTER, — Lewes then seemingly having all the voters are supposed to be highly cultivated and thoughtful a pre-eminence. The disastrous reign of Ethelred the Unready persons. But those who would deal practically with any question
brought upon this Province, with the rest of England, the do best if they .adapt their arguments to the actual state of things, ravages of the Scandinavian Kings. One account of the origin and there is no doubt about the fact that, rightly or wrongly, of the celebrated Godwine makes him the son of Wulnoth, the public opinion has pronounced unmistakably in favour of lowering South Saxon Knight who had a military command in Sussex. rather than raising, the standard of fitness for the exercise of the
He certainly became in Canute's reign Earl of Kent and Sus- suffrage. Those who ask for the admission of women to this privilege , sex. He is said to have seized the young Saxon Prince Alfred have, therefore, to compare the whole body of qualified English- in his bed at Guildford, in Surrey. Godwine's landed pois- women, now by law prevented from voting, with those men whose sessions seem to. have chiefly lain in Sussex, and the following rental is under ten pounds; and to inquire—are these women, on names are specified :—Dodimere (Odymer), Joet, Erbentone, the whole, less likely to make a wisesuae, or more likely to make a , Hiham (Ingham), Wilendone (Willingdon), Radeton (Hatton), dangerous use, of the franchise, than the lower class of male Whneltone (Wilmington), Torringes (Terring), Lestone (Laugh- householders? Unless the answer be given against the women, ton), Bercheham (Barcomb), Siletone (Sullington), Lorentone, what valid reason can be assigned for specifically excluding all
Trovorde, Tocherst, Stodeham, Rotendone, Selehain (Selcham), interests in female hands from representation in the councils of • Tadeham, Borne, Gontone, Estone, Kemore, Clepinges (Climping), the nation?
Benestede (Binstead), Berchinges (Perching), Hentone, Lameswic, I totally deny that the "fundamental difference in the nature of King of the South Saxons, and his Queen were Christians, but Rotingdene, Bristelmeatune (Brighton), Fochinges (Fulking), the whole of his people were still unconverted. Wilfrid of York Saleicombe, Herat, Plumtune, Bercham, Bedling (Heeding), then being shipwrecked on the coat, received from the King a Wistanetune (Wiston), Cengeltune, Applesham, Ordinges, Den- grant of the entire district of Manwood, forming the peninsula of tune, How, Essingetune (Ashington), Wasingtime (Washington), Selsey, and first baptizing the chiefs and principal men, the mass and Etune, all in Sussex ; and Witley, in Surrey. of the population followed the example. According to Bede's Harold succeeded his father in the govenament of Sussex ; account, the condition of the people was at this crisis most William the Norman landed, it is well known, on the low land in lamentable. No rain had fallen for three years, and pressed by Pevensey Bay, and the battle which followed and decided the the consequent famine, the inhabitants, gathering together in fate of England derived its name from the Sussex town of bodies of thirty or forty, were seeking refuge from prolonged Hastings. misery by drowning themselves in the sea. Wilfrid taught them The Towns of Sussex had been growing during the Saxon period to fish, and on the first day of baptism the rain fell in plenty, and into considerable importance. At Chichester, in Edward the the ground became again fruitful. He then established a monas- Confessor's time, there were ninety-eight kayo, or enclosed plots of tery at Selsey, and there established his fellow exiles from North- ground on which houses stood, though we do not know how many =brie. He became the first Bishop of the South Saxons, and houses they altogether contained, as more than one house might the See remained at Selsey till after the Norman Conquest, when stand on a haya. It is said that at the time of the Norman it was removed to Chichester. There are now no remains of any Survey Chichester contained sixty more houses than in Edward monastery or cathedral here. The present village of Selsey is half the Confessor's time, but only nine burgesses of the town are a mile from the sea, but the tradition is that it once stood in the incidentally mentioned in Domesday Book. At Lewes, whose early centre of a peninsula, the southern half of which has been swept importance we have already seen, King Edward had 137 burgesses away by the sea. It is said that the cathedral stood about a mile in demesne. The annual value of the burgh is rated at that time to the east of the present church, and we are told by Camden at 26/., at the time of the Survey at 34/. At Pevensey in the that the foundations were in his time (three centuries ago) Confessor's time there were 24 burgesses belonging to the King's still to be seen at low water. The "Park," the line of demesne; the Bishop of Chichester had five, Edner the priest two, anchorage along the coast, is said to have been a deer park Orner the priest five, and Doda the priest three. The Earl of in Henry time. Bede's account is so mixed up with Moretaine had then 60 burgesses here, the monks of Moretaine manifest fable that we can place little reliance on it. The eight, and 42 belonged to other individuals. At Guildford, in statement especially as to the ignorance of the art of fishing is Surrey, at the time of the Survey, the King had 75 haym, and evidently a mere deduction from the supposition that the wretched 175 homines de Guldeford are enumerated casually in the same inhabitants would not have starved if they had known that art. document. There were, then, 2,497 bordarii, 765 colarii, 420 But modern experience shows that a population may become so servi, and 5,898 villani in Sussex. Only fifteen tenants-in-chief demoralized as to starve in the neighbourhood of a shore abound- held this county, and there were 534 under-tenants, while in the ing with fish which they know perfectly well how to catch, but county of Surrey there were as many as 43 tenants-in-chief and only are too indolent so to do. Very likely, however, Christianity 108 under-tenants, while the villani were not half (2,363), and the gained its first hold on this obscure and remote district by the slaves more than those (478) in Sussex. The bordarii of Surrey material benefits which its missionaries bestowed on the rude or were 968, the cotarii, 240. Such is what we may call the skeleton degenerate inhabitants. /Ethelwealh, we are told, received from of the period which ended with the Norman Conquest.