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from its winding shore on the south banks of the Thames. Windsor was granted by Edward the Confessor to Westminster Abbey; but the abbot exchanged it with William the Conqueror for Battersea and Wandsworth, in Sarrey, and lands in Essex. This town having been chartered as a borough 5 Edward I. began to return members to parlia. ment in the thirtieth year of the same reign, and continued to send until the 14th Edward III. when it ceased sending until the 25th Henry VI. Since this time it has regularly been represented. The corporation, according to its present charter, granted by James II. 1685, consists of a mayor, high steward, two bailiffs, twenty-eight burgesses, who are chosen out of the principal inhabitants, thirteen of whom are called fellows or benchers of the guildhall; of these, ten from among them, beside the mayor and bailiffs, are chosen, and are stiled aldermen.
The town hall in the High Street, is a very handsome structure, erected in 1686, and is supported by arches and columns of Portland stone. The hall room is spacious, and contains the portraits of James I. Charles I. Charles II. Wil. liam III. and Mary II. queen Anne, and her consort George, prince of Denmark; archbishop Laud, and Theodore Randue, Esg. a considerable benefactor to the town. In the year 1907, the corporation, out of a dutiful regard to queen Anne, (who constantly made Windsor her summer residence,) erected at the north side of the town hall the statue of that princess, vested in her royal robes, with the globe and other ensigns of regalia. The Latin inscription may be thus translated : “ Erected in the sixth year of her reiga
.S. Chapman, mayor." period when William I. fixed his mansion on the neighbouring hill, it gra. dually decayed; the new town, which sprung up under the protection of - De fortress, having superior attractions."
On the south side is the statue of prince George of Dents mark, in a Roman military habit, erected by Sir Chrisa topher Wren, in 1713, who had been member for the town; under which is also an inscription, stiling the prince ti a hero whom future ages may revere.” The inscription has much of Pope's manner; and though the compliment paid to both the royal personages may appear Aattering, much is to be considered from the gratitude of the town for the residence of a beloved queen, and her family, among a portion of a loyal and generous people,
In the area, underneath the town hall, is kept a weekly market on Saturday, which is plentifully supplied with corn, meat, fish, and all other provisions. The fairs are Easter Tuesday, the 5th of July, and 24th of October.
The parish CHURCH, dedicated to St. John Baptist, is an antient and stately fabric, in the tower of which are eight fine bells. The interior contains many memorials of respectable families, and the organ which stood in the col. legiate chapel of St. George, presented to the parish by his majesty George III. The donations for the use of the poor have been very numerous; and the fuöds being assisted by grants from the crown, have occasioned the rates for their support to be less burthensome in Windsor, than in other places.
In 1706, a neat free school was erected on the north side of the church, for the clothing and education of thirty boys and twepty girls, which is in a fourishing condition,"
A piece of ground was presented in 1784 to his majesty,. by the corporation, for the building of an hospital for sick soldiers; it is commodious, and sufficiently spacious for the purposes intended.
Mr. Thornton, in 1793, erected an elegant small theatre; the seasons. of representations are by the lord chamberlain's licence, restricted to the vacations at Eton college; but the company have since obtained permission from the magistrates to perform during Ascot races.
The system lately adopted by government for concentrating the military force, was adopted at Windsor in 1795,
whete extensive and comfortable barracks were erected for seven hundred and fifty infantry; and a large building has since been formed for four hundred cavalry. . · Windsor is chiefly built of brick, and contains from five bundred to six hundred houses; the inhabitants being com. 624
onha. puted at about six thousand. It consists of six principal streets, from which branch several ones of inferior space.
P. 87 They are mostly well paved and lighted; to defray the expence of which, a small rate is levied on the inhabitants, by act of parliament paffed in 1769. The parish of New Windsor, contains two thousand six hundred and eighteen acées, which, exclusive of the space occupied by the buildings, are principally disposed into parks, gardens, and pleasure grounds *. But the principal boast of this place is
WINDSOR CASTLE. This magnificent residence of the British monarchs, is situated on the summit of an artificial hill, the base of which Erra is skirted on the north side by the Thames. This castle Hiales owes its origin to William the Conquesor, soon after his being settled on the throne, on account of its healthful and pleasant situation, and probably no less as a place of secu. rity and strength in the beginning of his reign t. His son Henry I. greatly improved it, added many buildings, and burrounded the whole, for its greater strength and beauty, with a strong wal). Succeeding monarchs also, for the same reason, constantly resided here till the reign of Ed. ward III, who was born here. This prince caused the an,
* Beauties of England and Wales, Vol. I.
† Previously to this the castle belonged to the abbot of Westminster, by gift of Edward the Confessor, with whom king William exchanged it for other possessions, as appears by the following extract from the charter : “ Cum consenser et favore venerabilis Abbatis Westmonasterii conventionem feci de regia possessione Windlesora quod locus ille utilis et com. inodus visus est propter contiguam aquam et silvam venantibus aptam, Et alia plura quæ in ibi sunt regibus commoda, uno regia prebendationem aptus existit, pro qua Wakendune et Firinges concessi,” &c.
tient building to be entirely taken down, inclosed the whole with a strong wall or rampart of stone, and erected the present stately castle, and chapel of St. George; here also he instituted and established the most Noble Order of the Garter. John, king of France, and David, king of Scotland, were prisoners of war in this castle during Ed. ward's reign.,
Great additions were made to the buildings within the castle by Henry II. Edward IV. Henry VII. and VIII. queen Elizabeth, and Charles II. whn, soon after the Restoration, thoroughly repaired the castle...
Windsor Castle owes much to this prince, who, mostly, kept his court here during the summer season, and spared no expence to render this castle worthy the royal residence.
· The castle is divided into two courts or wards, with a large keep or round tower between, called the Middle Ward, formerly separated from the lower ward by a strong wall and drawbridge. The whole is of a large extent, and contains upwards of twelve acres of land. The upper court or ward is a spacious quadrangle, and contains on the north side the royal apartments and the chapel and hall of St. George; on the east and south sides the several apart. ments of the royal family, and the great officers of the crown. In the area or middle of this court is erected a noble equestrian statue in copper of Charles II. in a Roman habit, on a statuary marble pedestal, carved in bassa relievo *.
The Keep or Round Tower, forms the west side of the upper court, and is the lodging of the constable or governor; it is built in the form of an amphitheatre; the ascent into these lodgings is by a Aight of large stone steps; the apartments are fine and noble, and here is a guard room. This officer has the entire government of the castle, and is an officer of great antiquity, honour, and power.
* The duke of St. Alban's lodge is said to have been built by Mrs Eleanor Gwynn.