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Among the Ruins

Thursday, 3.--About noon I preached at Cathanger, about eight miles from Taunton. It was an exceedingly large house, built (as the inscription over the gate testifies) in the year 1555 by Sergeant Walsh, who had then eight thousand pounds a year; perhaps more than equal to twenty thousand now. But the once famous family is now forgotten; the estate is moldered almost into nothing, and three quarters of the magnificent buildings lie level with the dust. I preached in the great hall, like that of Lincoln College, to a very serious congregation.

In the evening I preached at South Petherton, once a place of renown and the capital of a Saxon kingdom, as is vouched by a palace of King Ina still remaining and a very large and ancient church. I suppose the last blow given to it was by Judge Jefferies who, after Monmouth's rebellion, hanged so many of the inhabitants and drove so many away that it is never likely to lift up its head again.

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