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lions of learning; and secondly, to some of the diversions, &c. prevalent among our an cestors.
In the reign of King Stephen, and of Henry II. saith Fitz-Stephen*, there were in London three principal churches, which had famous schools, either by privilege and ancient dignity, or by favour of some particular persons, as of doctors, which were counted notable and renowned for knowledge in philosophy: and there were other inferior schools also.
Upon festival days, the masters made solemn meetings in the churches, where their scholars disputed logically and demonstratively; some bringing Enthymems, others, perfect Syllogisms; some disputed for shew, others to trace out the truth: and cunning sophisters were thought brave scholars, when they flowed with words: others used fallacies. Rhetoricians spoke aptly to persuade, observing the precepts of art, and omitted nothing that might
* Fitz-Stephen was descended of Norman nobility, and born in London; and subsequently became monk of Canterbury. Besides many other works, he wrote a description of London in Latin, a'small tract about 10 pages 4to, which was translated by Stow, and added to his Survey. In his time it appears, that there were 13 conventual, and 136 parochial churches in London; on which Fuller remarks, that “though there be, at this day, more bodies of men, there be fewer houses of God therein." He florished about 1190. VOL. II,
serve their purpose. The boys of divers schools did cap or pot verses, and contended of the principles of grammar.
There were some, which, on the other side, with epigrams and rhymes, nipping and quissing their fellows, and the faults of others, though suppressing their names, moved thereby much laughter among their auditors.
Hitherto Fitz-Stephen, for schools and scholars, and for their exercise in the city in his days. Since which time, as to me it seemeth, by increase of colleges, of students in the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, the frequenting of schools and exercising of scholars in the city as had been accustomed, very
much decreased. The three principal churches, which had these famous schools by privileges, must needs be the cathedral church of St. Paul for one; seeing that by a general council, holden in the year of Christ 1176, at Rome, in the patriarchy of Lateranı, it was decreed, ' That every cathedral church should have its schoolmaster, to teach poor scholars, and others, as had been accustomed; and that no man should take any
reward for licence to teach.' The second, as most ancient, may seem to have been the monastery of St. Peter, at Westminster; whereof Ingulphus, abbot of Crowland, in the reign of William the Conqueror, writeth thus :
' I Ingulphus, an humble servant of God, born of English parents, in the most beautiful city of London, for to attain learning, was first put to Westminster, and after to study at Oxford,' &c.
And writing in praise of queen Edgitha, wife to Edward the Confessor:
I have seen her, (saith he,) often, when, being but a boy, I came to see my father, dwelling in the king's court; and often, coming from school, when I met the queen, she would oppose me touching my learning and lesson, and, falling from grammar to logic, wherein she had some knowledge, she would subtlely conclude an argument with me; and bý her handmaiden, give me three or four pieces of money, and send me unto the palace, where I should receive some victuals, and then be dismissed.
The third school seemeth to have been at the monastery of St. Saviour, at Bermondsey in Southwark. For other priories, as of St. John by Smithfield, St. Bartholomew in Smithfield, St. Mary Overy in , Southwark, and that of the Holy Trinity by Aldgate, were all of later foundation : and the friaries, colleges, and hospitals, in this city, were raised since them, in the reigns of Henry III, and Edward I, II, and III, &c. All which houses had their schools, though not so famous as these first named.
But, touching schools more lately advanced in
ti.is city, I read, that king Henry V, having suppressed the priories aliens, whereof some about London ; namely, one hospital called, Our Lady of Rouncival, by Charing-Cross; one other hospital in Holborn; one other without Cripplegate, and the fourth without Aldersgate; besides others that are now worn out of memory, and whereof there is no monument remaining, more than Rouncival, converted to a brotherhood which continued till the reign of Henry VIII, or Edward VI. This, I say, and other of their schools being broken up and ceased, king Henry VI, in the 24th year of his reign, by patent appointed, that there should be in London, grammar schools, besides St. Paul's, at St. Martin's Le Grand ; St. Mary Le Bow in Cheap; St. Dunstan's in the West; and St. Anthony's. And, in the next year, to wit, 1394, the said king ordained by parliament, that four other grammar schools should be erected; to wit, in the parishes of St. Andrew in Holborp; Alhallows the Great in Thamesstreet; St. Peter's upon Cornhill; and in the hospital of St. Thomas of Acons in West Cheap. Since the which time, as divers schools by suppressing of religious houses whereof they were members in the reign of Henry VIII. have been decayed; so again have some others been newly erected and founded for them; as, namely, St. Paul's school, in place of an old ruined house, was built in most ample man
ner, and largely endowed in the year 1512, by John Collet, doctor of divinity, and dean of Paul's, for 153 poor men's children; for which there was ordained a master, surmaster, or usher, and a chaplain,
Again, in the year 1553, after the erection of Christ's hospital, in the late dissolved house of the Grey Friars, a great number of poor children being taken in, a school was ordained there at the citizens' charges.
Also, in the year 1561, the merchant-taylors of London founded one notable free grammar school in the parish of St. Lawrence Poutney, by Candlewickstreet; Richard Hills, late master of that company, having given 5001. towards the purchase of a house called the Manor of the Rose, sometime the duke of Buckingham's.
Of these schools more will be spoken in a proper chapter.
As for the meeting of school-masters on festival days, at festival churches, and the disputing of their scholars logically, &c, hereof I have before spoken, the same was long since discontinued. But the arguing of the school-boys about the principles of grammar, hath been continued even till our time: for I myself, in my youth, have yearly seen, on the eve of St. Bartholomew the apostle, the scholars of divers grammar schools repair unto the church-yard of St. Bartholomew, the priory in Smithfield, where