276 Route 37. SHREWSBURY. St. Mary's.
Shrewsbury is celebrated for its cakes, and visitors may still enjoy
'a Shrewsbury cake of Pailin's own make' ('Ingoldsby Legends').
Not more than half-a-day need be devoted to Shrewsbury.
Shreivsbury, the county-town of Shropshire or Salop, an ancient
place of 28,396 inhab., with some narrow steep streets and quaint
old houses, is picturesquely situated on a hill surrounded on three
sides by the Severn. Its name is derived from Scrobbesbyrig, an
appellation meaning wooded hill (comp. 'shrub', 'scrub'), assigned
to the British town found by the Saxons on this spot. As an
important position on the Welsh march, it was formerly surrounded
with walls, of which few traces remain. The Severn is crossed here
by four bridges, the Welsh, the English, Kingsland, and Greyfriais.
Above us, to the left as we quit the station, rises the Castle
(PI. D, E, 1), originally founded by a vassal of William the Conqueror
(entrance by an iron gate on the left, just before the Presbyterian
The mansion formed out of the ancient keep is not shown, but visitors
are permitted to ascend to the modern Watch Tower, which commands a
fine view of the Severn and tbe country round Shrewsbury. — The walk
outside tbe N. wall of the castle-enclosure leads to a covered bridge cross¬
ing the railway.
To the right, opposite the church, is the Free Library and Mu¬
seum (PI. D, 1), occupying the old building of the grammar-school
(comp. p. 277). In front is a statue of Charles Darwin (1809-82;
see p. 277). Immediately beyond the church is the picturesque
half-timbered gateway of the old Council House (17th cent.) —
A little farther on , St. Mary's St., diverging to the left, leads to
the *Church of St. Mary (PI. D, 2), which we enter by the porch
on the N. side. The architecture is of various periods, ranging from
Norman to late-Perpendicular.
The 'Interior, with its fine stained glass, is more pleasing than the
exterior. The Nave is late-Norman, the Transept E. E., and the Trinity
Chapel (to the S. of the choir) Perp. (15th cent.). The last contains a
monument of the 14th cent, and in the Chantry Chapel, on the N. side
of the chancel, is a tablet to Admiral Benbow (1655-1702), a native of
Shrewsbury. The ceiling is of oak. The Jesse Window, at the E. end,
dates from the 14th century. Under the W. tower is a memorial to Bishop
Samuel Butler (d. 1840; p. 277).
On leaving St. Mary's we pass the churches of St. Alkmund and
St. Julian (PI. D, 3) and then descend to the S. (left), through
the steep Wyle Cop, to the English Bridge (PI. E. 3), over the
Severn. Near the top of Wyle Cop, on the right, stands the house
in which Henry VII. is said to have spent the night before the battle
of Bosworth in 1485. Beyond the bridge we follow the road in a
straight direction, passing under the railway, to the *Abbey Church
(PI. F, 3), which is in part a Norman structure and belonged to a
monastery built by the founder of the castle. Among its chief
features are the fine W. window (Perp.) and the recessed Norman
doorway. The chancel and clerestory are modern. The interior
contains some interesting monuments, including that of Richard