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The statutes of this hospital inform us that it was founded for the benefit of at least thirty persons of both sexes, and so many more under the number of forty, as the revenues of it will permit; half the number must be inhabitants of Croydon, and half of Lambeth. One of them (who is also to teach in the school-house built by the founder) is required to say public prayers mornings and evenings in the chapel, on all working days, except Wednesdays and Fridays in the forenoon, and Saturdays, in the afternoon, on which days, as also on Sundays and festival days, the poor people of this hospital are to resort to the parish church of Croydon.
To the warden (who is always one of the poor pensioners) is allotted a yearly salary of
It would seem that the engagement at Croydon took place at the North-end of the High-street, to the Eastward of the town, in which direction Archbishop Whitgift's Hospital, and the house formerly the George Inn, are situated; this house is now the residence of Mr. Turner, a respectable and eminent farrier; in the year 1814 Mr. Turner, when making a gravel pit in his paddock opposite the Hospital, found a great many human skeletons, which lay about three feet deep from the surface, and one foot in the gravel, the foot in the gravel was filled up with mould, so that it appears pretty evident that the spot was used as a burying place.
See an abstract in the appendix.
£6 13 4 and to every poor brother and sister the sum of £5 per annum. besides wood, corn, and other provisions,
The worshipful company of fishmongers entertain the poor members of this establishment with a dinner annually, on the 22d of March, and on their departure deposit ten shillings in the poor's box at the gate.
The Archbishop of Canterbury is by his office the visitor of this hospital; and in the year 1634 it was visited by Sir Edmund Scott, Knt. and Samuel Bradford, B. D. who were appointed, by Archbishop Laud, commissaries for that purpose. The questions put by them may be seen in the appendix, but the answers have not been discovered.-We give the following information respecting this charity from Strype's Life of Archbishop Whitgift.
This year (1599) the Archbishop's most noble foundation of his hospital, free school, and chapel, at Croydon, was finished, On Monday the 9th July was the dedication and assignation of the said chapel, or oratory, of the hospital of the Holy Trinity in Croydon, of the foundation of John Whitgift, Archbishop of Canterbury, to the use of the poor of the same hospital, newly erected, and founded (as
it ran in the instrument) when the said most Reverend Father, the founder, at his palace at Croydon, in the presence of Thomas Redman, notary public, committed his place to the reverend father, Richard, Bishop of London, and Anthony, Bishop of Chichister, to dedicate and assign it to divine worship, and to the celebration of divine things, and to the preaching of the word; as much as he might de jure, and by the laws and statutes of this realm; and name the same chapel by the name of the chapel or oratory of the Hospital of the Holy Trinity in Croydon, of the foundation of John Whitgift, Archbishop of Canterbury. And to proceed to decree and do in the said business, according to the statutes, laws and canons, ordinances, rites, and customs of the church of England, on that behalf established, and now used and observed; and then the most Reverend Father decreed that at the time of the dedication of the said chapel or oratory, the godly prayers should be celebrated, and a holy sermon should be publicly preached. And he appointed for that time Thomas Monford, S. T. P. to be preacher. And appointed the day wherein the business aforesaid should be done, which was the 10th of the present month 1599. Present William Barlow, s. F. P. John Parker, Esq.
On which 10th of July between the hours of eight and twelve, the Bishop of London personally present in the chapel, in honour and reverence of the most Reverend, took on him the burthen of the execution of the said commission or deputation; and by virtue of the said commission, dedicated the said chapel or oratory to the divine worship, by the celebration of the divine offices, and preaching and setting forth God's word, as much as by right he could, and as by the statutes and laws of this kingdom he might: dedicating it by the name of the chapel or oratory of the Holy Trinity, &c. and openly and publicly denounced it so dedicated, and assigned; and that it ought so to remain for future times, which being so done, then and there prayers were made, unto God, according to the form prescribed in the book of public prayers, established by authority of Parliament, and immediately a sermon was preached by Thomas Monford s. T. P. present there the Bishop of Chichester, and a great many more, as Michael Murgatrod, George Whitgift, George Paule (bis officers), &c*..
Samuel Finch, vicar of Croydon, was ap
* See a Latin document signed, Thom. Redman, Notarius Publicus, in the Lambeth M. S. S. No. 275.
pointed the chief overseer of the work; who gave orders to Wormel, that on the fore gate of the Hospital should be placed the arms of the See of Canterbury, viz. in pale with the Archbishop's arms; the year of our Lord under them, viz. 1597, (in which year that part of the Hospital it seems was finished). And over the arms to be a free stone square, with these words in great letters, Sanctæ Trinitati Sacr. (sacred to the Holy Trinity), on the bare places over the gates called the ashler, this sentence following to be written in great capitals, viz. Prov. 28. Qui dat pauperi non indigebit (he that giveth unto the poor shall not lack). The Archbishop had with his own hand written down several sentences, as proper to be inscribed upon the front of this his Hospital, out of which choice was to be made, which were these;
Psalm 41. Beatus qui intelligit super egenum et pauperem. Blessed is he that considereth the poor and needy.
Qui miseretur pauperis beatus erit.
Honorat Dominum, qui miseretur pauperis.
Prov. 19. Fæneratur Domino, qui miseretur pauperis.