Spadacrene Anglica - The English Spa Fountain
by Edmund Deane
1  2     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

Transcriber's Note: A carat is used in some instances to indicate superscript. If part is in brackets, then only those letters in brackets are superscripted and the rest of the word is the normal size.

SPADACRENE ANGLICA. OR, The English Spa Fountain.


The First Work on the Waters of Harrogate.





If the Author of "Spadacrene Anglica" could see our modern Harrogate, for whose existence he is to no small extent responsible, he would be justly entitled to consider his labours as well spent, however surprised he might be at the change that had taken place in the village as he knew it in the year 1626. For so was Harrogate in those years, a small scattered hamlet, part of that great Royal Forest of Knaresborough, extending westward from the town of Knaresborough for about 20 miles towards Bolton Abbey, with an average depth of about 8 miles from North to South, a Royal Forest, as Grainge in his History thereof premises, from the year 1130 until 1775. Not only the change in the physical aspect of Harrogate would have been noted by our author. Since his days, within a radius of a few miles, have been found over 80 mineral springs, whereby Harrogate is distinguished from all other European health resorts. Not that the curative powers of these waters were altogether unknown before Edmund Deane extolled the merits of the Tuewhit Well in "Spadacrene Anglica." Indeed, he would be a bold man who would dogmatically lay down at what period the powers of these waters were unknown. Thus, in mediaeval times the waters of St. Mungo's and St. Robert's were accredited with miraculous powers. The Tuewhit Well itself derives its name, according to some authorities, from its association in pre-Roman times with the pagan God Teut.

"Spadacrene Anglica" was published by Dr. Edmund Deane, an eminent physician of York, in the year 1626, and passed through three editions after his death. All these editions are very scarce, and although there are copies of the four editions in the British Museum, there are only two other copies known to exist. I was indeed fortunate, therefore, when some seventeen years ago I picked up a copy in a well-known second-hand book shop in Harrogate. Now I am reprinting it, not so much for its interest to my professional brethren as a quaint and learned contribution to medical literature in the seventeenth century, but because it is the earliest and most indispensable source of the history of the waters of Harrogate.

A careful study of it will correct a number of remarkable errors, which now pass current as historical facts in connection with the rise into fame of Harrogate as our premier Spa. These errors would never have arisen had there been a more free access to this very scarce book. Most writers appear to have depended for their knowledge of its contents upon the summary of it contained in Dr. Thomas Short's "History of Mineral Waters," published about a century after the publication of "Spadacrene Anglica." In commenting on this and other works abridged in his History, the learned author states:

"Some of them are very scarce and rare. Therefore, such as have them not, have here their whole substance, and need not trouble themselves for the treatises." Unfortunately, they did not have their "whole substance," and hence these errors.

"Spadacrene Anglica" deals mainly with the Tuewhit Well or the English Spa. It is not my intention to discuss here either the history of its distinguished author or the early history of the English Spa. This task has been kindly undertaken for me by my friend and colleague, Dr. Alexander Butler, to whom I take this opportunity to express my grateful thanks for his very suggestive contribution.

Suffice it for the purpose of this short introduction to state that the medicinal qualities of the Tuewhit Well were discovered about fifty-five years prior to the publication of "Spadacrene Anglica," the credit of the discovery being due to a certain Mr. William Slingsby, not to his nephew, Sir William Slingsby as has been persistently but erroneously stated. The Tuewhit Well was first designated "The English Spa" in or about the year 1596 by Timothy Bright, M.D., sometime rector of both Methley and Barwick in Elmet, near Leeds, which goes far to support the well established belief that the waters of the Tuewhit Well were the first to be used internally for medicinal purposes in England. To-day the word Spa is, of course, a general term for a health resort possessing mineral waters, but in the days of Dr. Timothy Bright no such meaning attached to it; Spa was the celebrated German health resort, and one can readily conceive with what patriotic enthusiasm Dr. Timothy Bright would proclaim the Tuewhit Well as "The English Spa" when the medicinal properties of this Well were found to resemble those of the two famous medicinal springs of Sauveniere and Pouhon at Spa.

"Spadacrene Anglica" (as already mentioned) was published in 1626. Later in the same year appeared another work on Harrogate, entitled "News out of Yorkshire," by Michael Stanhope, Esq. Further, the time of Mr. William Slingsby's birth has been traced back to between the years 1525 and 1527. The year 1926 is therefore the tercentenary of the publication of Deane's "Spadacrene Anglica," and Stanhope's "News out of Yorkshire," and may also be regarded as the quatercentenary of the birth of Mr. William Slingsby. What a triple event for commemoration!

In this edition of "Spadacrene Anglica" the original title-page and initial letters have been artistically reproduced by the publishers; the text has not been modernized except in the case of the old vowel forms I and U for the consonants J and V. Otherwise, the original spelling and the use of capitals and italics have been retained. The long S has not been retained. With these slight changes one cannot but admire the forceful English in which it is written, and the clearness of the style of the author.

I am indebted to my daughter Dorothy for the sketch of the Tuewhit Well.


Saint Mungo, 12, York Road, Harrogate, 1921.

Biographical Notes OF Edmund Deane, M.D. and others in relation to the Tuewhit Well, The English Spa.



of Edmund Deane and others in relation to the English Spa.

The present reprint of "Spadacrene Anglica" should arouse a keen literary interest in its author, Edmund Deane, and in the early history of Harrogate. As one who had the privilege of reading the original edition of this work, belonging to Dr. Rutherford, I was struck by the marked contrast between Deane's account of the history of the medicinal waters of Harrogate, and that which is to be found in more recent writings on that subject.

These modern accounts cannot be better or more authoritatively exemplified than by taking a short extract from the article "Harrogate" in the "Encyclopaedia Britannica."[1]

"The principal chalybeate Springs are the Tewitt well called by Dr. Bright, who wrote the first account of it, the English Spaw, discovered by Captain William Slingsby of Bilton Hall, near the close of the 16th. Century...."

This paragraph, as a statement of facts, accurately sets out what is to be found in more or less detail in the accessible literature of to-day and will be referred to afterwards as the recognised history of Harrogate. It has received the express or tacit sanction of the Corporation of Harrogate and is embodied in its publications. Further a memorial has been erected to Sir William Slingsby, the Captain William Slingsby of Bilton Hall referred to in the above quotation, as the discoverer of the Tuewhit Well.

Notwithstanding the complete credence that has been given to this account for many years, I think there can be no doubt that it is entirely erroneous, and that unmerited fame has been given to Sir William Slingsby as the discoverer of the medicinal qualities of the Tuewhit Well, and to Dr. Bright as the author who first wrote an account of it.

Deane's history of the medicinal springs of Harrogate in the Elizabethan period is to be found in the earlier chapters of his book. It is therefore only necessary to mention here that, according to "Spadacrene Anglica" the Tuewhit Well was not discovered by Captain (or Sir) William Slingsby, it was not discovered near the close of the 16th Century, and Dr. Bright did not write an account of it. It is hardly credible that the history as given in the extract from the "Encyclopaedia Britannica" is actually derived from "Spadacrene Anglica." Yet such is the case. Owing to the great rarity of the first edition of that book, and the fact that the later editions were all, more or less, abridged or incomplete, a series of plausible conjectures by later writers founded on these imperfect editions has evolved a history of Harrogate in this period which is, as regards the main facts, largely fictitious. The object of the following biographical notes is, briefly, to restate the history of Harrogate during the Elizabethan period, in terms of the only reliable source for such a purpose, and to trace the accumulated errors, as far as possible, to their origin and source, an inquiry which the reprint of "Spadacrene Anglica" at the present time makes not inopportune.

No history of Harrogate should be written, unless preceded by a biographical note of the author of "Spadacrene Anglica," to whom and to whose work Harrogate doubtless owes its position as the premier Spa of this country; and it is with no little sense of the fickleness of fame that one finds his name so little known, and his worth as a writer unrecognized. As far as I know, no biography has been written heretofore, nor is his life given in the various collective records of the lives of British medical men, such as Aikin, etc.[2] The same neglect of him occurs in the "Dictionary of National Biography," where in view of the national importance of the Spas of this country, a biography of Deane might not unreasonably be expected. Here and there one is able to glean some small scraps of information about him, but the result of all the gleanings from contemporary records, so far, can be condensed in a very small compass. It does not seem amiss therefore to record here what is known of the "father of Harrogate" albeit at present unrecognized by his off-spring.

Deane was descended from a family who for many generations lived at Saltonstall, a hamlet in Warley in the parish of Halifax, and whose history appears to have been quite uneventful.[3] Owing to the frequency with which the same Christian names occur in the Parish Registers, it is by no means easy to identify the several families of the name of Deane, but in 1612 the family from which the author of "Spadacrene Anglica" was descended, recorded in the College of Arms a short entry of pedigree, of which a copy is appended. His parents were Gilbert Deane of Saltonstall and Elizabeth, daughter of Edmund Jennings of Seilsden in Craven, and their family consisted of four sons, viz. Gilbert, Richard, Edmund and Symon (twins). The date of birth of Edmund is not known, but the entry of baptism is on 23rd of March 1572.[4] The mother seems to have died at their birth, for the date of her funeral is but two days' later.[5]

Gilbert Deane of Saltonstall,-+-..... dau. of ..... Co. York Horsfold under the bank, near Heptonstall + - - Richard Deane Gilbert Deane of-+-Elizabeth dau. William 3 s.p. Saltonstall of Edm. Jennings Roger 4 of Seilsden in Craven + - - + Gilbert Richard Edmund Deane Anne Michaell Deane -+-Susan Deane, of the City dau of Symon s.p. dau of Bishop of of York, ... Faurie ... Bentley Ossory in Doctor of of Leicester, Ireland Phisick & Widow of Marmaduke Haddesley of Hull, Alderman John Deane, son & heir.

Of the brothers of Edmund, Gilbert, the eldest, apparently lived at Saltonstall, and it was his son, John Deane, who eventually became the chief beneficiary under the Will of Edmund. Symon (or Michaell Symon), the twin brother, died at the age of seven years. His remaining brother, Richard, born in 1570, entered Merton College, Oxford, in 1589, and in 1609 succeeded Dr. Horsfall as Bishop of Ossory. He died in 1614.

Edmund also entered Merton College, matriculating 26th March, 1591, and took the degree of B.A. on the 11th of December, 1594. He then "retired to St. Alban's Hall, where prosecuting his geny which he had to the faculty of physic" he was licensed to practise medicine on the 28th March, 1601, subsequently taking his degrees of M.B. and M.D. as a member of that hall on the 28th of June, 1608. He was incorporated at Cambridge in 1614. After taking his degrees in medicine he retired to York and practised in that city till his death in 1640.[6]

Nothing further is known of his life in York, except that Camidge[7] states that he occupied a house adjoining the residence of Mr. Laurence Rawden in the street called Pavement, a name, it has been suggested[8], derived from the Hebrew Judgement seat "in a place that is called the Pavement,"—this being that part of the City of York where punishment was inflicted and where the Pillory was a permanent erection. It is not unreasonable to suppose that this fact was responsible for Deane's tender pity for the "poore prisoners" in his Will.

In 1626, Deane published his "Spadacrene Anglica" which is here reprinted. "Spadacrene Anglica" is a model of lucid and logical exposition. It provides a quaint and interesting epitome of the medical opinion of the day, but it is of more special interest as the source for the earliest history of the Harrogate waters. Its importance from this particular standpoint will be considered later.

Later in the same year Michael Stanhope published his "Newes out of Yorkshire," and in this book he gives a lively description of his journey with Deane to the Well "called at this day by the country people, Tuit Well, it seemes for no other cause but that those birdes (being our greene Plover) do usually haunt the place." The following extract of the first recorded visit to Harrogate will, I think, be of interest.

"In the latter end of the summer 1625, being casually with Dr. Dean (a Physitian of good repute at his house at York, one who is far from the straine of many of his profession, who are so chained in their opinion to their Apothecary Shops, that they renounce the taking notice of any vertue not confined within that circuit) he took occasion to make a motion to me (the rather for that he remembered I had been at the Spa in Germany) of taking the aire, and to make our rendez-vouz at Knaresbrough to the end wee might be the better opportuned to take a view of the Tuit-well (whereof he had sparingly heard) for that it was by some compared to the so much fam'd Spa in Germany. I was not nice to give way to the summons of his desire: the match was soon made, and the next day, accompanied with a worthy Knight and judicious admirer, and curious speculator of rarities, and three other physitians of allowable knowledge, we set forwards for Knaresbrough, being about fourteen miles from Yorke. We made no stay at the towne, but so soone as we could be provided of a guide, we made towards the Well, which we found almost two miles from the Towne. It is scetuate upon a rude barren Moore, the way to it in a manner a continual ascent. Upon our first approach to the Spring we were satisfied that former times had taken notice of it, by reason it was encloased with stone, and paved at the bottome, but withal we plainely perceived that it had been long forgotten[9], which the filth wherewith it was choaked did witnesse, besides that through neglect the current of other waters were suffered to steale into it. Before any peremptory triall was made of it, it was thought fit first to clense the Well, and to stop the passage of any other waters intermixture, which within the compasse of an hour we effected. The bottom now cleared, we plainely descried where the waters did spring up, and then the Physitians began to try their experiments.

But, first of all I dranke of it and finding it to have a perfect Spa relish (I confesse) I could not contain but in a tone louder than ordinary I bad them welcome to the Spa. Presently they all took essai of it, and though they could not denie, but that it had a different smack from all other common waters, most confessing that it did leave in the pallate a kinde of acidnesse, yet the better to be assured whether it did partake with Vitrioll, the prime ingredient in the natural Spa, they mixed in a glasse the powder of Galls with this water, knowing by experience if this Minerall had any acquaintance with the Spring, the powder would discolour the water and turne it to a Claret die; wherein they were not deceived, for presently (to their both wonder and joy) the water changed colour, and seemed to blush in behalf of the Country, who had amongst them so great a jewell and made no reckoning of it.... You may suppose (being met together at our Inne, where we found ourselves very well accomodated for our provision) we could finde no other talke but of this our new Spa.... Three days after our return to York, Dr. Deane (whose thirst for knowledge is not superficially to be satisfied) by the consent of his fellow-physitians sent for a great quantity of the water in large violl glasses, entending partly by evaporation and partly by some other chimical means to experiment it...."

It would certainly appear from a perusal of the above, that at the latter end of the year 1625, Deane knew little of the medicinal value of the English Spaw. But such a conclusion is entirely opposed to the dedication and text of "Spadacrene Anglica," which clearly indicates that Deane was a close personal friend of the eminent physicians Dr. Timothy Bright, and Dr. Anthony Hunton of Newark-upon-Trent, who for years had been recommending the waters to their friends and patients. Moreover Deane himself had paid many visits to the English Spaw with the physicians of York, and had been at last induced to commit his knowledge to print. Is it permissible to use imaginative license and see in Deane a humorist who persuaded Stanhope "of taking the aire" while professing no intimate knowledge of the spring, yet going the length of taking the powder of Galls in his pocket to produce a stage effect, which he had never found to fail?[10]

Stanhope readily adopts the plover origin of the name Tuewhit, but the silence of Deane is suggestive of his doubt, and especially so as he mentions the pigeons haunting the sulphur springs as "an arguement of much salt in them." There is no obvious reason of this kind for the plovers frequenting the Tuewhit Well in preference to any other spring in the neighbourhood.

In 1630, Deane published a number of Tracts which had been left more or less incomplete by Samuel Norton. His share in the authorship of the different tracts varies. The titles of one or two will sufficiently indicate the nature of the subjects, and it can be seen that his studies included the philosophical stone, and other subjects receiving attention at the present time, such as "culture pearls."

"Mercurius Redivivus, seu modus conficiendi Lapidem Philosophicum."

"Saturnus Saturatus Dissolutus et Coelo restitutus, seu modus componendi Lapidem Philosophicum ... e plumbo...."

"Metamorphosis Lapidem ignobilium in gemmas quasdam pretiosas, seu modus transformandi perlas parvas ... in magnas et nobilis ..." etc. etc.

Edmund Deane married twice, first to Anne, widow of Marmaduke Haddersley of Hull; the date is not known, though it was before the entry of pedigree was recorded in 1612. In 1625, he had a license at York to marry Mary Bowes of Normanton at Normanton. There does not appear to have been a family by either of his wives.

He died in 1640, and was buried in St. Crux Church, York. This church was demolished about the year 1885, as it was considered structurally unsafe, but there does not appear to have been any memorial erected to him in the church. The manuscript Registers of the Parish of St. Crux are in the College of Arms: the manuscript extracts do not commence until the year 1678. His Will, however, is preserved. It is dated 30th of Oct. 1639, and was proved at York on the 14th of April, 1640.

In a biography it should be the task of the writer to visualise the personality of his subject as well as to record merely the material events of his life. In this instance it would be quite impossible to do so from lack of material, but yet from his works, and from the opinion held of him by Michael Stanhope, and last, but not least, from the contents of his own Will, I think some picture can be painted of him. A man of learning is shown from his writings: a perusal of "Spadacrene Anglica" will exhibit both the clearness of his intellect and the forcibleness of his style. For many years he successfully practised medicine at York. He was held in high esteem among his professional brethren, and was recognized by them as a leader in the profession with a broad mind, ready to listen to and investigate new ideas. His personality is fully and finely revealed in his Will, and as this is the only biography, as it were, written by himself, I append an extract from it, so that he may speak for himself.

In the name of God, Amen.

I Edmund Deane of the Cittye of Yorke Doctor of Phisicke being some what weake of bodye, yett in good & pfect remembrance of mynd & understanding (praised be God therefore) and calling to mynd the uncertainety of this my naturall life & my mortality, not knowing howe soone I shall laye downe this my earthly Tabernackle & be gathered to sleepe in the grave wth my fathers doe therefore accordinge to the holy Ghost directions make, constitute, ordayne & declare this my last Will and Testament for the better setleing of peace & concord amongst my wife, friends & kindred heareby revokeing in acte, deede and in lawe all other former Wills & testaments whatsoever. In manner & forme following.

That is to say first & principally I comend & bequeath my soule unto the ever blessed hands of Almighty God my heavenly father my maker & creator, whoe out of his meer mercy, free will & love to mankinde & to me in pticuler did vouchsafe to send his onely begotten sonne before all eternity, Christ Jesus the pmissed Messias into this world to save sinners (whereof w^th S^t. Paull I confesse my selfe the greatest) to laye downe his life for mankinde & that he dyed for me & for my salvac̅on, & that he rose againe the third day for my iustificac̅on, that where he now is, I shall be there alsoe after my dissolution & I hope & looke to be saved only by his mirritts, death & passion alone, & by noe other meanes whatsoever, & when itt shall please Almighty God to putt an end & period to these my dayes here on earth, ending this my pilgrimage, and layeing downe this my earthly Tabernackle.

Then I comitt & bequeath this my nowe liveing body to the earth from whence itt came, & the same to be buryed (yf I fortune to dye in Yorke or otherwise yf itt may be done wth convenyency) in the p'ish Church of St. Crux w^{th}in the said Citty of Yorke in the Chancell of the said Church & to be enterred as neare as may be unto the body of my late dearely beloved wife Anne Deane deceased w^{th}out any bowelling or embalmeing, & there to be decently enterred by toarch light, w^{th}out any further funerall pompe or solempnity whatsoever, beinge (as I thinke) a custome not altogeither laudable to banquett & feast att funeralls w^ch rather ought to be a tyme of mourneing, then banqueting and feasting

w^th said body of myne I knowe & beleive assuredly that I shall rise againe att the last day, & be reunited & ioyned againe unto my soule & that itt shall be made like unto Christ his glorious body, that where he is, there I shall be alsoe liveing and reigneing w^th him in his everlasting kingdome for ever.

Now concerning my temporall Estate w^ch God in his mercy hath vouchsafed to bestowe on me (or rather lent me as his steward) I bequeath it thus as followeth

First I give & bequeath to Mr. Roger Belwood my pastor thirty shillings.

Item I give to the poore people of the Cittye of Yorke three pounds XX^s whereof to be distributed to the poore of the Warde where I now live and the remmant to the poore of the other three Wardes equally to be divided.

Item I give to the poore prisoners of the castle of Yorke XX^s and to the poore prisoners on Ousebridge called the Kidcoate X^s and to the poore prisoners of S^t. Peters prison in Yorke X^s.

Item I give to the poore people of the old hospitall or massing dewes of the Citty of Yorke thirty shillings. Item whereas....

Item my Will meaninge and harty desire is that my nowe loveing wife Mary Deane shall & may quietly have & enjoye all her widdowe rights whatsoever according to this pvince of Yorke w^{th}out any further trouble molestac̅on or vexac̅on or suite in lawe and that my Executor shall not make any claime to any such goods or plate as she the said Mary had in her former widdowhood & brought w^th her to me att her marriage w^th me. Item I give to my said nowe loveing wife as a legacy my coatch horses & furniture & what hay or oates, coales, turfes & fuell shall be in my howse att my death. Item I give....

Item I give to Margery Smeton yf shee be my servant at my death forty shillings and to each other of my servants att my death tenn shillings.

All the rest of my goods & chattells unbequeathed, my debts and funerall expenses discharged I give and bequeath to my loveing nephewe Mr. John Deane of Saltonstall Atturney in his Maty Court of Com̅on Pleas att Westminster & eldest sonne of my late brother Gilbert Deane of Saltonstall deceased w^ch said John Deane I doe ordayne constitute & make my sole & onely Executor of this my last Will & Testament

And for as much as most of my Estate doth consist in debts, w^ch will require tyme for gathering in, my Will & meaneing is that this my said executor shall have twelvemonethes tyme for the payment of the greater legacies....

And further my meaneing is That for as much as my said Executor John Deane by Gods pvidence is likely to be lame by a fall & not to live & followe his profession as an Atturney to London (but as it weare undone) whome I have made my onely & sole Executor of this my last Will & Testament. Therefore all my nephews & kindred may know I have given them small legacy to doe him good

In Witness.... etc.

In "Spadacrene Anglica" Deane mentions that "out of the divers fountains springing hereabouts" five are worthy the observation of physicians. These are—

1.—The Dropping Well.

2.—The Sulphur Well at Bilton Park.

3.—The Sulphur Well near Knaresborough.

4.—The Sulphur Well at "Haregate head."

5.—The Tuewhit Well, or The English Spaw.

The number of springs worthy the observation of physicians has largely increased and the relative importance of the five mentioned has altered considerably since Deane wrote. But in 1626, The Tuewhit Well, or The English Spaw, was regarded as the most worthy of fame. This well, according to the later writers, was discovered by Captain (afterwards Sir) William Slingsby:—in Chapter 6 of "Spadacrene Anglica," however, a Mr. William Slingsby is given as the discoverer.

"The first discoverer of it to have any medicinall quality (so far forth as I can learn), was one Mr. William Slingesby, a Gentleman of many good parts, of an ancient and worthy Family neere thereby: who having travelled in his younger time, was throughly acquainted with the taste, use, and faculties of the two Spaw fountaines. In his latter time, about 55 yeeres agoe it was his good fortune to live for a little while at a grange house very neare to this fountaine, and afterwards in Bilton Parke all his life long."

From this it appears that the discovery was made by Mr. William Slingsby in his later years, about the year 1571, but if the Mr. William Slingsby here referred to was Sir William Slingsby he would have been a youth of some 8 or 9 years in 1571. Secondly, one would judge from the text that the Mr. William Slingsby referred to by the writer was dead at the time that he wrote, namely 1626, whereas, as a matter of fact, Sir William Slingsby was alive until the year 1634. Thirdly, it is impossible to conceive that Edmund Deane would refer to Sir William Slingsby as Mr. William Slingsby, seeing that the former was knighted in 1603, or 23 years prior to the publication of Deane's work. It is therefore abundantly clear that Sir William Slingsby—a very gallant gentleman—has no claim to the fame which history has insisted upon according him.

The fact is that the Mr. William Slingsby referred to[11] was the fourth son of Thomas Slingsby of Scriven, who married Joan, daughter of Sir John Mallory of Studley, and who had a family of six sons and four daughters. The name of the eldest son was Francis, and, as just mentioned, William was the fourth son. Sir William Slingsby was the seventh son of Francis and the nephew therefore of Mr. William Slingsby. Mr. William Slingsby was buried at Knaresborough on the 8th of Oct., 1606, but the date of his birth does not seem to have been recorded. His elder brother, Francis, died in 1600 at the age of 78, so that he was born in 1522. It is not unreasonable to suppose that William, his brother, one of a large family, was born between the years 1525 and 1527. He would therefore be somewhere between 44 and 46 years of age, when he discovered the medicinal qualities of the Tuewhit Well, which equally accords with Deane's statement that in his younger days he had travelled in Germany.

So far as I can trace, Hargrove[12] is the first author to confuse the uncle and the nephew. He writes that the well

"was discovered by Capt. William Slingsby, about the year 1571. This Gentleman, in the early part of his life, had travelled in Germany, where he made himself acquainted with the Spaws of that country. He lived sometime at Grange House, near the Old Spaw, from whence he removed to Bilton Park, where he spent the remainder of his days. He made severall trials of this water, and finding it like the German, he walled it about, and paved it at the bottom, leaving a small opening for the free access of the water. Its current is always near the same, and is about the quantity of the Sauvenir, to which Mr. Slingsby thought it preferable."

From this quotation it is clearly apparent that Hargrove erroneously inferred that Mr. Slingsby and Capt. Slingsby were the one and the same person instead of being uncle and nephew. In the 3rd edition of the "History of Knaresborough," published in 1782, the reference to Mr. Slingsby is omitted and from that edition onwards, Captain Slingsby appears as the discoverer of the Tuewhit Well in 1571, a discovery clearly inconsistent with the fact that he was born in the year 1562.

The source of Hargrove's information in the above quotation is, without doubt, the summary of "Spadacrene Anglica," published by Dr. Short in 1734 in his History of Mineral waters.[13] The summary by Short of Chapter 6 of "Spadacrene Anglica" is as follows:—

"This fifth Spaw is a Mile and half from Knaresburgh, up a very gentle ascent, near Harrigate, has much the same Situation as the foresaid Spaws in Germany. It was discovered first about fifty years ago, by one Mr. William Slingsby, who had travelled in Germany in his younger Years, seen, and been acquainted with theirs; and as he was of an ancient Family near the place, so he had fine Parts and was a capable Judge. He lived some time at a Grange-House near it; then removed to Bilton-Park, where he spent the rest of his Days. He, using this Water yearly, found it exactly like the German Spaw. He made several Tryals of it, then walled it about, and paved it in the bottom with two large Stone-flags, with a Hole in their sides for the free Access of the Water, which springs up only at the bottom, through a Chink or Cranny left on purpose. Its current is always near the same, and is about the quantity of the Sauvenir, to which Mr. Slingsby thought it preferable being more brisk and lively, fuller of Mineral Spirits, of speedier Operation; he found much benefit by it. Dr. Tim. Bright, about thirty years ago, first gave it the name of the English Spaw: Having spent some time at those in Germany, he was Judge of both; and had so good an Opinion of ours, that he sent many Patients hither yearly, and every Summer drank the Waters himself. And Dr. Anthony Hunter, late Physician at Newark-upon-Trent, often chided us Physicians in York, for not writing upon it, and deservedly setting it upon the Wings of Fame."

A more consistent form has been given to the error by Grainge, who in 1862 published a memoir of the Life of Sir William Slingsby, Discoverer of the first Spaw at Harrogate. Grainge, like Hargrove, had only access to Short's summary, but he sees the difficulty to which I have alluded, for he writes[14]:—

"From the uncertain expression of the Dr. 'about 50 years ago' the date of this discovery is generally fixed in the year 1576, though it is probably twenty years or more too early, as at that time Slingsby would only be fourteen years of age: and could not have travelled much in Germany or elsewhere: while the expression 'in his younger days' would infer that the discovery was not made until he had attained middle age at least."

Grainge accordingly dates Captain (or Sir) William Slingsby's discovery to 1596 or later, the origin of the expression "near the close of the 16th Century" of the recognised history.

In the first place Dr. Short is inaccurate in that Deane states it was discovered "55" years ago, and not "50." In the second place, the only authority whom Grainge could rely upon was Deane, either directly or indirectly, and Deane could not have made the discoverer to be a boy of nine years of age (not fourteen) for he must have known Sir William Slingsby, a contemporary. Finally, Grainge only consulted the summary of "Spadacrene Anglica" and not the actual work, and it is to be noted that Deane in Chapter 6 says the first discoverer "so far forth as I can learn." These words are not in the summary, but they show that Deane had given care to his work, and if Sir William Slingsby had been the discoverer, Deane could have obtained his information at first hand, and would have given Sir William Slingsby as his authority.

Grainge was an eminent and careful historian, and he has written a number of valuable works. He had the acumen to see that Sir William Slingsby could not possibly have been the discoverer in 1571, and it is fairly certain that if he had had access to Deane's work, he would have rectified the error as regards Sir William, instead of questioning the accuracy of Deane's statement.

Little has been added to the account of Mr. William Slingsby as given by Deane, but it has been shown at any-rate that the facts of his life fit in perfectly with that account.

The medicinal qualities of the Tuewhit Well having been discovered by Mr. William Slingsby in or about the year 1571, this gentleman did "drink the water every yeare after all his life time" and averred that "it was much better, and did excell the tart fountaines beyond the seas." Much pains were taken to bring the waters into notoriety in the interests of humanity, and by reason of a pardonable national pride that the country could boast of a health resort in every way comparable with the famous German health resort of Spa. Chief among these early advocates of this home fountain was Dr. Timothy Bright, who is responsible for naming the well the "English Spa," which name was apparently adopted by the gentry partaking of the water, whereas the common folk still cling to the ancient name of Tuewhit Well.

Timothy Bright has had a varied literary history. For about three centuries he was almost entirely forgotten, and some of his works even ascribed to purely imaginary authors. In recent years full justice has been done to his name as the "father of shorthand" following the publication by J.H. Ford in 1888 of the tercentenary edition of his work entitled "Characterie," and since that year there has been much written of him. The curious may therefore consult the works mentioned in the footnote,[15] but it will suffice for my purpose to give a brief sketch of his life, not as the "father of shorthand," but as one of the fathers of Harrogate.

Timothy Bright was born in Cambridge in the year 1551, matriculated in Trinity College, Cambridge, in 1565, and took his B.A. in 1567-8. He then went to Paris to study medicine, and in 1572 narrowly escaped the Massacre at Paris on St. Bartholomew's Eve by taking shelter at the house of Sir Francis Walsingham, the English ambassador. Returning to England he graduated M.B. in 1574 and M.D. in 1579. In 1584 he was well launched on his medical career, for he was the physician at St. Bartholomew's Hospital. By this time he had achieved some reputation as a writer and had obtained the friendship of the powerful Cecil Lord Burghley, Sir Francis Walsingham and Sir Philip Sidney, which probably explains how his now famous work "Characterie" was in 1588 dedicated to Queen Elizabeth. His connection with these powerful personages led to a change in his profession and incidentally to his connection with Harrogate, for on July 5th, 1591, the Queen presented him to the Rectory of Methley in Yorkshire, and on the 30th of Dec., 1594, also to the Rectory of Barwick in Elmet in the same county. He held both these livings till his death, which took place in 1615. By his Will he left his body "to be buried when and where it shall please God." He was no mean linguist for he bequeathed his Hebrew Bible and a Syriac Testament as well as Greek, Latin and Italian works to his brother. His books of Phisick and Philosophie he bequeathed to his sonne Titus Bright, M.D. He was fond of music and possessed the standard work on harmony by Joseph Zarlino. This he left, along with some instruments of music, a Theorbo and an Irish harp, "which I most usuallye played upon" to his brother.

In spite of the fact that he took holy orders, it is evident from "Spadacrene Anglica" that he was held in high esteem as a physician (albeit non-practising) by his contemporaries in Yorkshire, and his travel abroad in Germany well fitted him for the post of advocate, which from humane and patriotic motives he assumed on behalf of the English Spa.

Deane states that Bright first gave the name of English Spaw "about thirty years since, or more," that is, in 1596 or earlier. This would seem to indicate that Bright's association with Harrogate began shortly after he was presented to the Rectory of Barwick in Elmet in 1594.

Dr. Bright was a prolific writer and the names of his works are given in a footnote.[16] Some of his books passed through several editions. Burton's "Anatomy of Melancholy" is said to have been suggested by his "Treatise of Melancholy," and Shakespere was evidently acquainted with his book, "Characterie, an Arte of shorte, swifte and secrete Writing by Character."

"This is not my writing, Though, I confess, much like the character"

Twelfth Night. Act V, Sc. 1.

"All my engagements I will construe to thee, All the characterie of my sad brows."

Julius Caesar. Act ii, Sc. 1.

Hargrove appears also to be the earliest to assert that Bright was the first writer on Harrogate. In his "History of Knaresborough" it is merely stated "soon after its discovery Dr. Bright wrote on its virtues and uses."[17] There is no authority for that assertion in any of the works of Dr. Bright mentioned in the footnote, and the only evidence in support of Hargrove is that given by Wheater,[18] who writes:—

"Dr. Bright was first to rush into description and he acquits himself with true Elizabethan flavour. He observes regarding the water that 'It occasions the retention of nothing that should be evacuated and by relaxation evacuates nothing that should be retained. It dries nothing but what's too moist and flaccid, and heats nothing but what's too cold, and e contra: that though no doubt there are some accidents and objections to the contrary, it makes the lean fat, the fat lean, cures the cholic and the melancholy, and the vapours: and that it cures all aches speedily and cheereth the heart.' Such a recommendation," &c.

This quotation, which is apparently the only evidence in support of Hargrove's assertion that Bright wrote the first account of the English Spa, is not taken from Bright's writings at all, but from Dr. Short's summary of "The Yorkshire Spaw." "The Yorkshire Spaw" was a treatise written by Dr. John French in 1652, and so far therefore from being written by Dr. Bright, was actually written thirty-seven years after Bright's death.

It is perhaps only fair to the memory of both Hargrove and Wheater to state that neither of them would have fallen into this error if they had had the privilege of reading Deane's dedication to "Spadacrene Anglica," in which he states that Dr. Bright intended to write an account "in case hee had longer lived." No edition after the original edition contains this dedication, for, as will be shown later, this very important part of Deane's work was omitted by John Taylor in the second edition and was not restored in any of the later. Moreover it is quite clear from the dedication of Taylor's edition, in 1649 that copies of the original edition were even then unobtainable, owing probably to the commotions which had accompanied the civil war.

I may here therefore emphasise the good service that has been done to restore the true history of the medicinal waters of Harrogate, by the reprinting of the original edition of "Spadacrene Anglica" by my friend Dr. Rutherford.

Before passing to the Bibliography of "Spadacrene Anglica," a brief mention must be made of Michael Stanhope, Esquire, whose two books did much to add to the celebrity of the English Spa, and were afterwards associated with the later editions of "Spadacrene Anglica." His first work was published towards the end of 1626, and is entitled,

"Newes out of Yorkshire, or an account of a journey, in the true discovery of a sovereigne Minerall, Medicinal Water in the West-Riding of Yorkeshire, neere an Ancient Towne called Knaresbrough, not inferior to the Spa in Germany. Also a taste of Other Minerall Waters of severall natures adjoyning" By M.S.

Ecclest. 38. 4. The Lord hath created Medicines out of the Earth: he that is wise will not despise them.

A large extract has already been given from this book, which was dedicated "To the Right Honourable, the Vertuous, and Religious Lady, the Lady Katherine Stanhope, wife to the Lord Philip Stanhope, Baron of Shelford."

Stanhope's other work was entitled,

"Cures without Care, or, a summons to all who finde little or no help by the use of ordinary physick to repaire to the Northerne Spa. Wherein by many Presidents of a few late yeares, it is evidenced to the world, that infirmities in their own nature desperate and of long continance have received perfect recovery in the west Riding of Yorkshire. Also a description of the said water, and of other rare and usefull springs adjoyning, the nature and efficacie of the Mineralls contained in them, with other not impertinent notes. Faithfully collected for the publique good by M. St."

Tibul. "felix quicunque dolore alterius disces posse carere tuo," London, 1632.

Stanhope dedicated this work "To The Right Honourable, Thomas Lord Wentworth, etc., Lord President of his Majesties Council established in the North." Lord Wentworth is better known as the Earl of Strafford, and was beheaded in 1642. In it is contained a catalogue of persons who have received either benefit or cure by the waters.

An abridgement of the two works of Stanhope was made by John Taylor and published in 1649 under the title "Spadacrene Anglica ... Treatise of the learned Dr. Deane and the sedulous observations of the ingenious Michael Stanhope, Esquire." The ingenious Michael Stanhope, Esquire, also appears in the 1654 edition, but in that published in 1736, Stanhope appears as Dr. Stanhope. Short[19] seems to have been the first to make Stanhope a member of the medical profession. His opinion was soon adopted by others, and has apparently never been questioned. After a perusal of "Newes out of Yorkshire" and "Cures without Care," it is difficult to understand how Short arrived at his conclusion, for the internal evidence is entirely opposed to it. Even in the extract from "Newes out of Yorkshire" already quoted, it is obvious that Stanhope dissociates himself from the physicians with the party, for he writes, "then the physitians began to try their experiments," "three other physitians of allowable knowledge," and he refers to Deane as "one who is far from the straine of many of his profession." This extract was selected for an entirely different purpose, yet it is clearly not the language of a fellow-physician in practice in York. Short himself partially recognizes this. He only summarised "Cures without Care," and he justly remarks of the cures therein related that "some whereof are perhaps the greatest and most remarkable in the Authentic Records of Physic down from Hippocrates to this day." Short writes fully a century after "Cures without Care" was published, whereas Taylor was a Apothecary in York and a contemporary of both Deane and Stanhope there, and is accordingly the best authority on the status of Stanhope.

Sir Michael Stanhope, Knt.,-+ had a grant of Shelford Manor: beheaded in 1552 + - Sir Thomas Stanhope-+ Sir Edward Stanhope Other of Shelford, Knt., of Grimston, 2nd son,-+ issue died 1596 M.P. for Co. York - + + - -+ Sir John Stanhope-+ Other George Michael Other of Elvaston issue Stanhope, D.D. Stanhope issue Precentor of York, Buried 26/7/1644 -+ Sir Philip Stanhope, Knt. +-Katherine, daur. of Other Cr. Baron of Shelford, 7/11/1616 Francis, Lord Hastings issue and Earl of Chesterfield, 4/8/1628 Died 1656, Aged 71

A clue to the identity of Stanhope offers itself in the dedication of "Newes out of Yorkshire" to Lady Katherine Stanhope, wife to the Lord Philip Stanhope, afterwards the Earl of Chesterfield. An outline of the pedigree of the Stanhope family was obtained from the College of Arms and is here partly reproduced to show the relationship of Stanhope to Lady Katherine Stanhope.

A Michael Stanhope entered Christ's College, Cambridge, in 1597-8, and Gray's Inn in 1593-4, but there is no evidence to identify him with Michael Stanhope the second son of Sir Edward Stanhope, and the author of "Newes out of Yorkshire" and "Cures without Care." It may be mentioned that in the latter book, Stanhope discovers and describes the well at present known as John's well.



First Edition.


"Spadacrene Anglica," the English Spaw, or The Glory of Knaresborough. Springing from Severall famous Fountaines there adjacent, called the Vitrioll, Sulphurous, and dropping Wells: and also other Minerall Waters. Their nature, Physical use, Situation and many admirable Cures being exactly exprest in the subsequent Treatise of the learned Dr. Dean and the sedulous observations of the ingenious Michael Stanhope, Esquire. Wherein it is proved by Reason and Experience, that the Vitrioline Fountain is equall (and not inferior) to the Germaine Spaw. Aris[t]on men udor. Published (with other additions) by John Taylor, Apothecary in York, and there printed by Tho: Broad, etc., 1649.

The important and felicitous letter of dedication in the first edition is discarded, and one of Taylor's own composition, of a very different character is substituted for it. In it occurs the following, which is of bibliographical interest: "The importunate desire of my friends has forced me to reprint this little Treatise of Dr. Dean's Spadacrene Anglica, which the vacillation of these distracted and ruinous times had almost lost and obliterated. To this of Dr. Dean's I have added the Observations of Michael Stanhope, Esquire, which I have excerpted forth of his two books of the Spaw."


"Spadacrene Anglica," etc., York, printed by Tho: Broad, etc., 1654. The title is the same as the 1649 reprint, except for the fact that Taylor's name does not appear on it. His dedication is also omitted.


Thomas Short, M.D., "The Natural, Experimental and Medicinal History of Mineral Waters."

In this volume, there are summaries of Deane's "Spadacrene Anglica": Stanhope's "Cures without Care": and French's "The Yorkshire Spaw," etc.


"Spadacrene Anglica, or The English Spaw." Being An Account of the Situation, Nature, Physical Use, and admirable Cures, performed by the Waters of Harrogate, and Parts adjacent. By the late learned and eminent Physician, Dr. Dean of York, and also the Observations of the ingenious Dr. Stanhope. Wherein it is proved by Reason and Experience the vitrioline Fountain is equal to the German Spaw. To which are added Some Observations (Collected from modern Authors) of the Nature, Vertues and Manner of Using the Sweet and Sulphur Waters at Harrogate, Leeds, etc., 1736.


The present edition, reprinted from the 1626 edition.

* * * * *

[Footnote 1: "Encyclopaedia Britannica," 11th ed., 1910-11, vol. xiii, page 27.]

[Footnote 2: J. Aikin, "Biographical Memoirs of Medicine in Great Britain from the Revival of Literature to the time of Harvey," 1780. Wm. MacMichael, "Lives of British Physicians," 1830. T.J. Pettigrew, "Medical Portrait Gallery," 1838. G.T. Bettany, "Eminent Doctors, their Lives and their Works," 1885.]

[Footnote 3: Watson, J., "The History and Antiquities of the Parish of Halifax in Yorkshire," 1775.]

[Footnote 4: "The Register of Halifax," Part 1, 1910, page 205.]

[Footnote 5: "The Register of Halifax," Part 2, 1914, page 253, The Yorkshire Parish Register Society.]

[Footnote 6: Anthony A. Wood, "Athenae Oxoniensis," ed. Bliss, vol. ii, page 660. "Alumni Oxoniensis," arranged by Joseph Foster. Vol. 1, 1500-1714.]

[Footnote 7: Camidge, Wm., "Ye Olde Streete of Pavement," York, c. 1893.]

[Footnote 8: Davies, R., "Walks through the City of York," 1880, page 247.]

[Footnote 9: cf. "Spadacrene Anglica," page 125.]

[Footnote 10: "Spadacrene Anglica," page 92.]

[Footnote 11: "Pedigrees of the County Families of Yorkshire," Joseph Foster, 1874, Vol. 1 (West Riding).]

[Footnote 12: E. Hargrove, "The History of the Castle, Town, and Forest of Knaresbrough, with Harrogate and its medicinal Springs." 2nd. ed., 1775, page 45. I have not seen the 1769 ed.]

[Footnote 13: Thomas Short, M.D. "The Natural Experimental and Medicinal History of the Mineral Waters, etc." 1734, page 238.]

[Footnote 14: Grainge, W., "Memoir of the Life of Sir Wm. Slingsby." 1862. Page 16.]

[Footnote 15: "Athenae Oxoniensis," ed. by P. Bliss, 1815, vol. 2, 174, footnote by Rev. Joseph Hunter. Dictionary of Nat. Biography, 1886, vol. VI. "Dr. Timothy Bright, Some Troubles of an Elizabethan Rector," by Rev. H. Armstrong Hall, 1905, in vol. xv; and "The History of the Parish of Barwick in Elmet," by F.S. Colman, M.A., Rector, 1908, in vol. xvii of the Publications of the Thoresby Society. "William Shakespeare and Timothy Bright," by M. Levy, 1910. "Timothe Bright, Doctor of Physicke, A Memoir of the Father of Shorthand," 1911, by W.J. Carlton. His Will is published in "Yorkshire Archaeological Journal," 1902, vol 17.]

[Footnote 16: "A Treatise: wherein is declared the sufficiencie of English Medicines for the cure of all diseases cured with medicine," T.B. 1580.

"Hygieina, id est de sanitate tuenda, Medicinae Pars prima." 1581.

"Medicinae Therapeutiae pars: de dyscrasia corporis humani." 1583.

"Therapeutica, hoc est de sanitate restituenda. Medicinae Pars altera."

"In Physimam G.A. Scribonii Animadversiones." 1584.

"A Treatise of Melancholie. Containing the causes thereof, & reasons of the strange effects it worketh in our mindes and bodies, with the phisicke, cure, and spirituall consolation for such as have therto adjoyned an afflicted conscience, etc." 1586.

"Characterie, an Arte of shorte, swifte and secrete Writing by Character. Invented by Timothe Bright, Doctor of Physike." 1588.

"An Abridgement of the Book of Acts and Monumentes of the Church." 1589. Better known as "Foxe's Book of the Martyrs."]

[Footnote 17: E. Hargrove, "The History of Knaresbrough." 2nd ed., 1775, page 45.]

[Footnote 18: W. Wheatear, "A Guide to and History of Harrogate," 1890, page 58.]

[Footnote 19: Thomas Short, M.D., "History of Mineral Water," 1734, page 243.]

Spadacrene Anglica.


Being A BRIEFE TREATISE of the acide, or tart Fountaine in the Forest of Knaresborow, in the West-Riding of Yorkshire.

As also a Relation of other medicinall Waters in the said Forest.

BY Edmund Deane, D^r. in Physicke, Oxon. dwelling in the City of YORKE.

LONDON, Printed for John Grismand: and are to be sold by Richard Foster, neere the Minster-gate in Yorke. 1626.




_Though it was my fortune first of all to set a new edge on this businesse; yet my journeyes to this Fountaine have not been made without your good companies and association, nor the severall tryals had there, and at home, performed without your worthy helpes and assistance; nor this little Treatise begun without your instigations and incitements. Therefore I find none so fit and meet to patronize it, as your_ selves: being able out of your owne knowledge and observation to defend it against all malicious detractions. To extoll it above the_ Germaine Spaw, _may be thought in me either indiscretion, or too much partiality; but why I may not parallele them (being in natures and qualities so agreeable) nor I, nor you (I suppose) know any inducing, much lesse perswading argument. Wherefore being thus confident, I thought it no part of our duties, either to God, our King, or Country, to conceale so great a benefit, as may thereby arise and accrue not onely unto this whole Kingdome and his Majesties loving subjects, but also in time (after further notice taken of it) to other foraigne nations and countries, who may perhaps with more benefit, lesse hazard and danger of their lives, spoiling and robbing, better partake of this our_ English Spaw _Fountaine, then of those in_ Germanie.

It were to be wished, that those two famous Physitians, Dr. Hunton and Dr. Bright had beene yet living, to have given testimony of the great good hopes and expectation they conceived of it. The former of which did oftentimes request me to publish it to the world: and the other was resolved (in case hee had longer lived) to have done it himselfe. So carefull were they both to promote their countries good, and studious to procure the health of their Countrimen.

I am as briefe and plaine, as possibly I may, to the end the Reader may not be wearied, nor the patient deluded; and, if for these causes I may seem to bee censured, yet I am well assured, that to your selves brevity and perspicuity cannot, but bee acceptable. So wishing you all happinesse, I shall ever rest and remaine

From my house in Yorke, this 20th. of April, 1626.

Your assured friend, Edm; Deane.

The English Spaw.

* * * * *

CHAP. 1.

Of the situation of the Towne of Knaresborow.

Gnaresbrugh (commonly called Knaresborow) is a very ancient Market towne in the West-Riding of Yorkeshire, distant 14 miles from the City of Yorke; where the Pole is elevated 54 degrees, and 20 odde minutes. On the South-west part thereof is that faire, and goodly Fort, so much renowned, both for the pleasant situation, and remarkable strength, knowne by the name of Knaresborow Castle, seated on a most ragged and rough Rock; whence (as learned Mr. Camden saith) it is so named.

Both the Castle and the Towne are fenced on the South and West parts with the River Nid: which is beautified here with two faire Bridges of stone, which lead from the Towne into the Forest adjoyning, as also unto a large empaled Park of his Majesties, called Bilton-parke, well stored with fallow Deere: part whereof is bordered with the said river.

The Towne it selfe standeth on a hill, having almost on every side an ascent to it; and about it are divers fruitfull valleyes well replenished with grasse, corne, and wood. The waters there are wholesome and cleare; the ayre dry and pure. In briefe, there is nothing wanting, that may fitly serve for a good and commodious habitation, and the content and entertainment of strangers.

Many things are very observable in this place, which because they rather do appertaine to the volumes of Geographers, & Antiquaries, then to the purpose intended in this little treatise, are here omitted.

CHAP. 2.

Of the severall earths, stones, and mineralls found neere and about this place.

Although there are in sundry places of this Kingdome as many, or moe severall kinds, and sorts of earths quarreyes of stone, minerals, and mines of mettalls, then in any other Realme whatsoever; notwithstanding no one place hath beene observed to have them either in such plentie, or variety in so small a distance, as this. For here is found not onely white and yellow marle, plaister, oker, rudd, or rubricke, free-stone, an hard greet-stone, a soft reddish stone, iron-stone, brimstone, vitreall, nitre, allum, lead, copper, (and without doubt diverse mixtures of these) but also many other mineralls might (perhaps) be found out by the diligent search and skilfull industrie of those, who would take paines to labour a little herein.

All which do manifestly demonstrate, that nature hath stored this little territorie with a greater diversitie of hidden benefits, then great and spacious Countries otherwise abounding in outward native commodities, and that the fountaines, or springs of water hereabouts cannot otherwise then participate of their severall natures, and properties.

CHAP. 3.

Of the fountaines, of pure and simple waters neere, and about the Towne.

As generally most parts of the West Riding of Yorkeshire (especially the hilly and more mountaineous places thereof) are stored with fountaines and springs of cleare, limpide, and pure simple waters; so likewise the territorie here abouts is not without plenty of them. Two whereof have gotten and purchased that reputation, as to be saincted: The one called by the name of Saint Magnus, or Mugnus-Well: th' other, that of Saint Roberts.

These, formerly for a yeere, or two, have beene in great request in these parts amongst the common sort, much sought unto by many, and great concourse of people have daily gathered and flocked to them both neere, and a farre off, as is most commonly seene, when any new thing is first found out. Fama enim grescit eundo, even unto incredible wonders and miracles, or rather fictions, and lyes. All which commeth to passe as wee may well suppose, through our overmuch English credulity, or (as I may better say) rather superstition. For to any such like Well, will swarme at first both yong and old (especially the female sexe, as ever more apt to bee deluded) halt, lame, blind, deafe, dumbe, yea, almost all, and that for all manner of maladies and diseases, both inward and outward.

But for as much, as these are springs of pure, and simple waters meerely, without any mixture at all of minerals to make them become medicinable, it is verily thought, that the many & severall cures, which have bin attributed unto them in those times, when they were so frequented, were rather fained, and imaginary, then true, and reall; and that those, who then visited them, were desirous (either to uphold, and maintaine the credit, and reputation of their Saints, or else, to avoyd the scorne and derision of their owne delusion) to have others likewise deceived.

Time hath quite worne all their strength, and consumed all their vertues; so that nothing of worth now remaines with them, saving onely their bare names and titles: Sic magna sua mole ruunt.

Wherefore to omit these, as scarce worthy the mentioning; those are chiefly here to be described, which doe participate of minerall vertues, and faculties.

CHAP. 4.

Of five fountaines neare unto the town, which doe participate of minerall vertues.

Out of the divers Fountaines springing hereabouts, five are worthy the observation of Physitians. The first whereof is very neare unto the river banke, over against the Castle, called by the name of the Dropping-well, for that it droppeth, distilleth, and trickleth downe from the hanging rocke above. The water whereof hath a certaine quality or property to turne any thing, that lieth in it, into a stony substance in a very short space.

Three of the others (being all of them much of one, and the same nature) are termed by the country people thereabouts the Stinking-wels, in regard they have an ill, and fetide smell, consisting most of Sulphure-vive, or quicke brimstone. One of them, and that which hath the greatest current, or streame of water, is in Bilton park.

The other two are in the sayd Forest; one is neare unto the towne; the other is further off, almost two miles from it, beyond a place called Haregate head, in a bottome on the right hand of it, as you goe, and almost in the side of a little brooke.

The fift, and last (for which I have principally undertaken to write this short Discourse) is an acide, or tart fountaine in the said Forest, commonly named by the vulgar sort, Tuewhit-well, and the English Spaw, by those of the better rank, in imitation of those two most famous acide fountaines at the Spaw in Germany, to wit, Sauvenir, and Pouhon: whereof the first (being the prime one) is halfe a league from the Spa, or Spaw village; the other is in the middle of the towne.

CHAP. 5.

A more particular recitall of the first foure Wells.

I purpose to speake somewhat more in this place of the first foure Springs mentioned in the former Chapter, in regard the consideration of them may perhaps give some light to those, who shall hereafter search further into the secrets, which nature may seeme to afford in the Country hereabouts.

The first is the Dropping-well, knowne almost to all, who have travelled unto this place. The water whereof distilleth and trickleth downe from the hanging Rocke over it, not onely dropping wise, but also falling in many pretty little streames.

This water issueth at first out of the earth, not farre from the said hanging rocke, and running a while in one entire current, continueth so, till it commeth almost to the brim of the cragg; where being opposed by a damme (as it were artificiall) of certaine spongy stones, is afterwards divided into many smaller branches, and falleth from on high in manner aforesaid.

It is therefore very likely, that Mr. Camden in person did not see this Fountaine, but rather that hee had it by relation from others; or at least wise (if he did see it) that hee did not marke, and duly observe the originall springing up of the water, when in his Britannia he saith thus: The waters thereof spring not up out of the veines of the earth, &c.

Concerning the properties and qualities thereof, I have nothing more to write at this time (there being formerly little tryall had of it) saving that divers inhabitants thereabouts say, and affirme, that it hath beene found to bee very effectuall in staying any flux of the body: which thing I easily beleeve.

The other three are sulphureous fountaines, and cast forth a stinking smell a farre off, especially in the winter season, and when the weather is coldest. They are all noysome to smell to, and cold to touch, without any manifest, or actuall heat at all; by reason (as may most probably be thought) their mynes, and veines of brimstone, are not kindled under the earth; being (perhaps) hindred by the mixture of salt therewith.

Those, who drinke of their waters, relate, they verily thinke there is gunpowder in them, and that now and then they vomit after drinking thereof.

The waters, as they runne along the earth, doe leave behind them on the grasse and leaves a gray slimy substance, which being set on fire, hath the right savour of common brimstone. They are much haunted with Pigeons, an argument of much salt in them; of which in the evaporation of the water by fire, wee found a good quantity remaining in the bottome of the vessell.

One thing further was worth observation; that white mettall (as silver) dipped into them, presently seemeth to resemble copper: which we first noted by putting a silver porrenger into one of these; unto which Sir Francis Trapps did first bring us. Which tincture these waters give by reason of their sulphur.

Touching their vertues, and effects, there may in generall the like properties be ascribed unto them, as are attributed unto other sulphureous Bathes actually cold, participating also of salt.

The vulgar sort drinke these waters (as they say) to expell reefe, and fellon; yea, many, who are much troubled with itches, scabs, morphewes, tetters, ring-wormes, and the like, are soone holpen, and cured by washing the parts ill affected therewith. Which thing they might much more conveniently, and more commodiously doe, if at that in Bilton parke were framed 2 capacious Bathes, the one cold, the other to be made hot, or warme, by art, for certaine knowne howers a day.

CHAP. 6.

A more particular description of the fift, or last fountaine, called the English Spaw.

This, being the principall subject of this whole Treatise, is in the said forest, about halfe a league, or a mile and a halfe west from the towne; from whence there is almost a continuall rising to it, but nothing so great, as the ascent is from the Spaw village to the Sauvenir. This here springeth out of a mountainous ground, and almost at the height of the ascent, at Haregate-head; having a great descent on both sides the ridge thereof; and the Country thereabouts somewhat resembleth that at the Spaw in Germany.

The first discoverer of it to have any medicinall quality (so far forth as I can learn) was one Mr. William Slingesby, a Gentleman of many good parts, of an ancient, and worthy Family neere thereby; who having travelled in his younger time, was throughly acquainted with the taste, use, and faculties of the two Spaw fountaines.

In his latter time, about 55 yeeres agoe it was his good fortune to live for a little while at a grange house very neare to this fountaine, and afterwards in Bilton Parke all his life long. Who drinking of this water, found it in all things to agree with those at the Spaw. Whereupon (greatly rejoycing at so good and fortunate an accident) he made some further triall and assay: That done, he caused the fountaine to be well, and artificially walled about, and paved at the bottome (as it is now at this day) with two faire stone flags, with a fit hole in the side thereof, for the free passage of the water through a little guttered stone. It is open at the top, and walled somewhat higher, then the earth, as well to keepe out filth, as Cattle for comming and approaching to it. It is foure-square, three foot wide, and the water within is about three quarters of a yard deepe.

First we caused it to be laded dry, as well to scoure it, as also to see the rising up of the water, which we found to spring up onely at the bottome at the chinke or cranny, betweene two stones, so left purposely for the springing up of the water at the bottome: Which as Pliny observeth in his 31 booke of his Naturall History and the third Chapter, is a signe above all of the goodnesse of a fountaine.

"And above all (saith he,) one thing would bee observed, and seene unto, that the source, which feedeth it, spring and boyle up directly from the bottome, and not issue forth at the sides: which also is a maine point that concerneth the perpetuity thereof, and whereby wee may collect, that it will hold still, and be never drawne drye."

The streame of water, which passeth away by the hole in the side thereof, is much one, and about the proportion of the current of the Sauvenir.

The above named Gentleman did drinke the water of this Fountaine every yeare after all his life time, for helping his infirmities, and maintaining of his health, and would oftentimes say and averre, that it was much better, and did excell the tart fountaines beyond the seas, as being more quicke and lively, and fuller of minerall spirits; effecting his operation more speedily, and sooner passing through the body.

Moreover Doctor Timothy Bright of happy memory, a learned Physitian, (while hee lived, my very kind friend, and familiar acquaintance) first gave the name of the English Spaw unto this Fountaine about thirty yeares since, or more. For he also formerly had spent some time at the Spaw in Germany; so that he was very able to compare those with this of ours. Nay, hee had futhermore so good an opinion, and so high a conceit of this, that hee did not onely direct, and advise others to it, but himselfe also (for most part) would use it in the Sommer season.

Likewise Doctor Anthony Hunton lately of Newarke upon Trent, a Physitian of no lesse worth and happy memory, (to whom for his true love to mee, and kind respect of mee, I was very much beholden) would often expostulate with mee at our meetings, and with other Gentlemen of Yorkeshire, his patients, how it came to passe, that I, and the Physitians of Yorke, did not by publike writing make the fame and worth thereof better knowne to the world?

CHAP. 7.

Of the difference of this Fountaine from those at the Spaw, to wit, Sauvenir, and Pouhon.

This springeth almost at the top of the ascent (as formerly hath beene said) from a dry, and somewhat sandy earth: The water whereof running South-East, is very cleare, pure, full of life, and minerall exhalations.

We find it chiefly to consist of a vitrioline nature and quality, with a participation also of those other minerals, which are said to be in the Sauvenir fountaine; but in a more perfect, and exquisite mixture and temper (as wee deeme) and therefore to be supposed better and nobler, then it. The difference betweene them will be found to be onely secundum majus & minus, that is, according to more, or lesse, which maketh no difference in kind, but in degrees. This partaketh in greater measure of the qualities, and lesser of the substances of the minerals, then that doth; and for that cause it is of a more quicke and speedy operation; as also for the same reason, his tenuity of body, and fulnesse of minerall spirits therein contained, it cannot be so farre transported from its owne source, and spring, without losse, and diminution of his strength, and goodnesse. For being caried no further, then to the towne it selfe (though the glasse or vessell be closely stopt) it becommeth somewhat weaker: if as farre as to Yorke, much more: but if 20 or 30 miles further, it will then bee found to be of small force, or validity, as we have often observed.

Whereas contrariwise the water of the lower fountaine at the Spaw, called Pouhon, is frequently and usually caried and conveyed into other Countries farre off, and remote, as into France, England, Scotland, Ireland, divers parts of Germany, and some parts of Italy; yea, and that of Sauvenir, (which is the better fountaine, and whose water cannot be caried so farre away, as the other may) is oftentimes used nowadayes at Paris, the chiefe City of France.

But this of ours cannot be sent away any whit so farre off without losse and decay of his efficacy, and vertue; so ayrie, subtill, and piercing are its spirits, and minerall exhalations, that they soone passe, vanish, and flye away. Which thing wee have esteemed to be a principall good signe of the worthy properties of this rare Fountaine. So that this water, being newly taken up at the Well, and presently after drunke, cannot otherwise, but sooner passe by the Hypochondries and through the body, and cause a speedier effect, then those in Germany can. Whereby any one may easily collect, and gather, that this getteth his soveraign faculties better in its passage by and through the variety of minerals, included in the earth (which only afford unto it an halitious body) then those doe.

If then wee bee desirous to have this of ours become commodious either for preserving of our healths, or for altering any distemper, or curing any infirmity (for which it is proper and availeable) it ought chiefly to bee taken at the fountaine it selfe, before the minerall spirits bee dissipated.

CHAP. 8.

That Vitriol is here more predominant, then any other minerall.

We have sufficiently beene satisfied by experience and trialls, through what minerals this water doth passe: but to know in what proportion they are exactly mixed therewith, it is beyond humane invention to find out; nature having reserved this secret to her selfe alone. Neverthelesse it may very well be conjectured, that as in the frame, and composition of the most noble creature, Man (the lesser world) there is a temper of the foure elements rather ad justitiam (as Philosophers say) then ad pondus; so nature in the mixture of these minerals, hath likewise taken more of some, and lesse of others, as shee thought to be most fit, and expedient for the good and behoofe of mans health, and the recovery and restitution of it decayed; being indeed such a worke, as no Art is able to imitate.

That Vitriolum (otherwise called Chalcanthum) is here most predominant, there needs no other proofe, then from the assay of the water it selfe; which both in the tart and inky smack thereof, joyned with a piercing and a pricking quality, and in the savour (which is somewhat a little vitrioline,) is altogether like unto the ancient Spaw waters; which according to the consent of all those, who have considered their naturall compositions, doe most of all, and chiefly participate of vitrioll.

Notwithstanding, for a more manifest, and fuller tryall hereof, put as much powder of galls, as will lye on two-pence, or three-pence, into a glasse full of this water newly taken up at the fountaine, you shall see it by and by turned into the right and perfect colour of Claret wine, that is fully ripe, cleare, and well fined, which may easily deceive the eye of the skilfullest Vintner.

This demonstration hath beene often made, not without the admiration of those, who first did see it. For the same quantity of galles mingled with so much common water, or any other fountaine water thereabouts, will not alter it any thing at all; unlesse to these you also adde Vitrioll, and then the colour will appeare to be of a blewish violet, somewhat inkish, not reddish, as in the former, which hath an exquisite and accurate conjunction of other minerall exhalations, besides the vitrioline. But this probation will not hold, if so be you make triall with the said water being caried farre from the well; by reason of the present dissipation of his spirits.

CHAP. 9.

Of the properties, and effects of Vitrioll, according to the ancient and moderne Writers.

The qualities of Vitrioll, according to Dioscorides, Galen, AEtius, Paulus AEgineta, and Oribasius, are to heate and dry, to bind, to resist putrefaction, to give strength and vigour to the interiour parts, to kill the flat wormes of the belly, to remedy venemous mushromes, to preserve flesh over moyst from corruption, consuming the moysture thereof by its heat, and constipating by his astriction the substance of it, and pressing forth the serous humidity.

And according to Matthiolus in his Commentaries upon Dioscorides, it is very profitable against the plague and pestilence, and the chymicall oyle thereof is very availeable (as himselfe affirmeth to have sufficiently proved) against the stone and stopping of urine, and many other outward maladies and diseases, (Andernaeus and Gesner adde to these the Apoplexy) all which, for avoyding of prolixity, I doe here purposely omit.

Neither will I further trouble the Reader with the recitall of divers and sundry excellent remedies, and medicines, found out and made of it in these latter times, by the Spagyricke Physitians, and others: In so much that Joseph Quercetanus, one of those, is verily of opinion, that out of this one individuall minerall, well and exquisitely prepared, there might be made all manner of remedies and medicines sufficient for the storing and furnishing of a whole Apothecaries shop.

But it will (perhaps) be objected by some one or other in this manner: If vitrioll, which as most doe hold, is hote and dry in the third degree, or beginning of the fourth, nay, of a causticke quality, and nature (as Discorides is of opinion) should here be predominant, then the water of this fountaine must needs bee of great heat and acrimony; and so become not onely unprofitable, but also very hurtfull for mans use to be drunke, or inwardly taken.

To which objection (not to take any advantage of the answer, which many learned Physitians doe give, viz. that vitrioll is not hot, but cold) I say:

First, that although all medicinall waters doe participate of those mineralls, by which they doe passe, yet they have them but weakly (viribus refractis) especially when in their passages they touch, and meet with divers others minerals of opposite tempers and natures.

Secondly I answer, that in all such medicinall fountaines, as this, simple water doth farre surpasse and exceed in quantity, whatsoever is therewith intermixed; by whose coldnesse it commeth to passe, that the contrary is scarce, or hardly perceived. For example, take one proportion of any boyling liquor to 100. or more, of the same cold, and you will hardly find in it any heat at all. Suppose then vitrioll to be hot in the third degree, it doth not therefore follow, that the water, which hath his vertue chiefly from it, should heat in the same degree. This is plainly manifest not onely in this fountaine, but also in all others, which have an acide taste, being indeed rather cold, then hot, for the reasons above mentioned.

CHAP. 10.

Of the effects, which this fountaine worketh, and produceth in those who drinke of it..

Experience sheweth sufficiently, besides reason, that this water first, and in the beginning cooleth such, as use it: But being continued it heateth and dryeth; and this for the most part it doth in all, yet not alwayes. For (as we shall more fully declare afterwards) it effecteth cures of opposite, and quite contrary natures, by the second and third qualities, wherewith it is endowed, curing diseases both hot, cold, dry, and moist.

Those waters (saith Renodaeus) which are replenished with a vitrioline quality, as those at the Spaw, doe presently heale, and (as it were) miraculously cure diseases, which are without all hope of recovery; having that notable power, and faculty from vitrioll; by the vertue and efficacy whereof, they passe through the meanders, turnings, and windings of all parts of the whole body. Whatsoever is hurtfull, or endammageth it, that they sweepe and carie away: what is profitable and commodious, they touch not, nor hurt; that, which is flaccid, and loose, they bind and fasten: that, which is fastened, and strictly tyed, they loose: what is too grosse and thicke, they incide, dissolve, attenuate, and expell.

More particularly, the water of this fountaine hath an incisive and abstersive faculty to cut, and loosen the viscous and clammy humours of the body, and to make meable the grosse: as also by its piercing and penetrating power, subtilty of parts, and by his deterging and desiccative qualities to open all the obstructions, or oppilations of the mesentery (from whence the seeds of most diseases doe arise and spring) liver, splen, kidneis, and other interiour parts, and (which is more to be noted and observed) to coole and contemperate their unnaturall heat, helping, and removing also all the griefes and infirmities depending thereupon.

Besides all this, it comforteth the stomacke by the astriction it hath from other minerals, especially iron, so that (without doubt) of a thousand, who shall use it discreetly and with good advice (their bodies first being well and orderly prepared by some learned and skilfull Physitian, according to the states thereof, and as their infirmities shall require) there will scarcely be any one found who shall not receive great profit thereby.

Moreover, it clenseth, and purifieth the whole masse of blood contained in the veynes, by purging it from the seresity peccant, and from cholericke, phlegmaticke, and melancholike humours; and that principally by urine, which passeth through the body very cleare, and in great quantity, leaving behind it the minerall forces, and vertues.

Their stooles, who drinke of it, are commonly of a blackish, or dark greene colour, partly because it emptieth the liver and splen from adult humours, and melancholy, or the sediment of blood: but more especially, because the mineralls intermixed doe produce and give such a tincture.

CHAP. 11.

In what diseases the water of this Fountaine is most usefull and beneficiall.

Over and besides the peculiar and specificall faculties, which this fountaine hath, it sheweth divers and sundry other manifest effects and qualities in evacuating the noxious humours of the body, for most part by urine especially when there is any obstruction about the kidneyes, ureters and bladder: Or by urine and stoole both, if the mesentery, liver, or splen, chance to bee obstructed. But, if the affect or griefe be in the matrix or womb, then it clenseth that way according to the accustomed and usuall manner of women.

In melancholike people it purgeth by provoking the haemorrhoides, and in cholericke by siege, or stoole. If it causeth either vomit or sweat, it is very seldome and rare.

See here a most admirable worke guided by the omnipotency and wisedom of the Almighty, that a naturall, cleare, and pure water, should produce so many and severall effects and operations, being all of them in a manner contrary one to another, which few medicines composed by art can easily performe without hurt and damage to the party. Wherefore being drunke with those cautions and circumstances necessarily required thereunto, it is to be preferred before many other remedies, as not onely procuring these evacuations; but also (which is more to be noted) staying them, when they grow to any excesse. For seeing that here are minerals contained both hot, cold, dry, aperitive, astringent, &c. there is none so simple but must needs thinke and grant, that it cannot otherwise bee but good and wholesome in grievances, and diseases, which in their owne natures are opposite.

1  2     Next Part
Home - Random Browse