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name and dignity is thus sculptured was " John Johnson, Lord Mayor, 1846."
London Stone stands at a short distance from Staines bridge, and Staines itself is said to owe its name to it, Stana being the Saxon word for a stone; but the chronology of the derivation seems a little at fault. Staines is a place too well known to need description; and if it were not, there is nothing in it to describe but a long street of ordinary looking houses, a market-place of the usual kind, and a patch-work sort of church. By the best modern authorities Staines is thought to be the Pontes of Antoninus; and here the great Roman road crossed the Thames, being still distinctly traceable by way of Wickham Bushes in Windsor Forest to Silchester, whence three branches passed off, to Winchester and the coast, to Salisbury, and to Bath; other lesser branches diverging at various points from these principal ones.
Staines bridge is a handsome structure consisting of three main arches of granite, with several side arches of brick, to permit the flow of water during floods. The bridge was built a few years back, after the failure of several attempts to construct one of iron. It was designed by Rennie, and was opened with considerable ceremony in 1832, by King William and Queen Adelaide.
Crossing the river by Staines bridge we come to Egham, once a busy town, owing to the number of long stages that passed through it. Of the eighty that once passed daily, not half a dozen run now, and the posting trade is almost gone. This great change is owing to the construction of the South-Western Railway on one side of it, and the Great Western on the other. Egham consists of a street, above a mile in length, but without anything in it to call for record. The old church was burnt down about thirty years back; several of the curious monuments it contained are preserved in the present church. One to the memory of Sir John Denham, and another to his two wives, are perhaps the most remarkable, as well as the showiest. Sir John was a Baron of the Irish Exchequer, and father of the poet Denham.
A little lower down the river, on the Middlesex side, is the pleasant retired village of Laleham, where Dr. Arnold spent the early years of his manhood. The neighbourhood is flat and not particularly attractive to a stranger, but it may be seen in his letters how much of beauty may be found in such a place by one who resides there, and is willing to look after what is lovely in it. On Greenfield, a common in the parish, are the remains of a Roman encampment. Dr. Stukeley says that it is the spot where Csesar halted the day after he crossed the Thames, but that, as Lysons remarks, is of course a mere conjecture. Some parts of Laleham church are of the Norman period.
About Laleham there are a good many large trees, and a few are scattered along the opposite meadows; St. Anne's Hill, on the Surrey side of the river, stands out very prominently, clad in light foliage, from amidst which a glimpse is caught of a quiet looking mansion; the roofs of part of Chertsey rise in the distance, and over them hangs the gray smoky haze that always marks the site of a good-sized town; while the river at our feet makes some bold curvatures; so that this part of our journey is both cheerful and picturesque —though the elevated causeway carried along the river between Egham and Chertsey for the protection of the fields from floods, somewhat detracts from the latter quality. A meadow called Laleham Burway belongs to the parish of Laleham, though on the opposite side of the river. There is a tradition that it was given by an Abbot of Chertsey to the Laleham fishermen as an acknowledgment of their having supplied the Abbey with fish during a time of pestilence and dearth. The meadow was used as a common ground by the inhabitants of Laleham, and their cattle used to cross the Thames every morning to pasture on it; but Laleham Burway, like so many other commons, is now "enclosed and divided."
St. Anne's Hill owes its name to a chapel which once crowned its summit. The house which now peers out so temptingly from among the trees, was the favourite retreat of Charles James Fox. During the later and stormier years of his public life he owned this estate, and hither he gladly escaped from the strife and acerbity of politics. Every hour that he could snatch from the requirements of his country or his party, was spent here; and his enjoyment of rural life and occupations had a keenness that seems to have been a constant source of surprise and amusement to his political associates. In the Life of Lord Sidmouth, recently published, the feeling is illustrated in two or three lively anecdotes. "Mr. Fox," says the author, "delighted in his seat at St. Anne's Hill. At an important epoch of the French Revolution, on some one asking, Where is Fox? General Fitzpatrick answered, ' I dare say he is at home, sitting on a haycock, reading novels, and watching the jays stealing his cherries.'" Again we are told, " Mr. Addington on one of his few holidays, during the heat of the French Revolution, was riding past the grounds of St. Anne's Hill, when he was espied over the pales by its owner, who called out to hini to stop. Mr. Fox then invited him into his garden, showed him its beauties: and as he particularly admired some weeping ash-trees, very kindly offered to send him cuttings at the proper season. Some months afterwards, Mr. Fox, who had just been attending a stormy meeting in Palace-yard, went up to the Speaker in the house and said, ' I have not forgotten your cuttings, but have brought them up to town with me, and you must treat them so and so.' In five minutes more, he was warmly engaged in debate with Pitt and Burke." The great statesman's enjoyment of his country residence was as ardent as here represented, but his employments were scarcely so trivial. He spent his time not only in rural pursuits, but also, says Lord Holland,* in "historical researches, critical inquiries, the study of the classics, and works of imagination and poetry. , . . The scale which his various pursuits occupied in his estimation is very naturally described in several of his letters." Lord Holland gives as a specimen, that most pleasant letter to Lord Grey, in which he defends the cheerfulness of the nightingale's note by the authority of Theocritus and Chaucer. A more detailed and evidently faithful sketch of his daily life at St. Anne's Hill is given by Mr. Trotter, his secretary, in his ' Memorials of Fox ' (p. 16); and a poetic one, by the master hand of the Bard of
Memory, may be found in ' Human Life, a Poem but here there is no room to insert either.
The house is rather small, but neat, and the grounds are exceedingly beautiful. Fox, as has been mentioned, paid great attention to the cultivation of the grounds, and they are said to have been in an unusually excellent condition during his life. The views from both house and grounds are extensive and varied. Fox's widow continued to reside here till her death, which occurred only four or five years ago. St. Anne's Hill appears, from a passage in one of his letters to Sprat, to have been a favourite resort of the poet Cowley, when he lived at Chertsey.
Chertsey is an ancient town, but there is little of antiquity in its present appearance. It stands on a slip of low land, between the brook which issues from Virginia Water and the Thames; hence its name, of which the Saxon form, Ceortes-eye, signifies Ceort's isle ; though Stukeley fancies that it derives its name from Caesar having crossed the river here, it being " made up of Caesar and the British ridk, ritus, a passage or ford." (Letter to Dr. Ducarel.) The town consists of two broad streets placed at right angles to each other, with some meaner streets and passages diverging from them. The business is chiefly agricultural, but there are extensive brick-works; and I believe some other manufactures are also carried on, though on a more confined scale. It has above 5000 inhabitants. There are a few public buildings, mostly of modern erection, but none remarkable either for size or beauty. The largest, most noticeable, and ugliest is the church. Inside it is a marble tablet erected to the memory of Fox by