Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for EYAM

EYAM, a village, a township, and a parish in Bakewell district, Derby. The village stands in Eyam dale, near the river Derwent, 5 miles E by N of Tideswell and 5 N of Hassop r. station; and has a post office‡ under Sheffield. It was known, at Domesday, as Aiune; it rests on two different rock-formations, -the S side on mountain limestone, the N side on shale and sandstone; and it is built of stone, and presents a clean and cheerful appearance. The township includes the village. Real property, £6, 961; of which £2, 670 are in mines, and £. 19 in quarries. Pop., 1, 172. Houses. 247. The parish contains also the township of Woodland-Eyam, and the hamlet of Foolow. Acres, 4, 476. Real property, £9, 215. Pop., 1, 673. Houses, 364. The lords of the manor are the Duke of Devonshire and the Duke of Buckingham. Eyam dale is highly romantic and picturesque; and abounds with elevated rocks and interesting caverns. Cucklet dell, or the Delf, has steep and rugged sides; yet presents an aspect of verdure, softness, and boskiness; and opens into Middleton dale, with a mellowing effect upon that dale's wildness. Cucklet church is a large mass of rock, projecting from the steep sides of the dell, at the top of a steep acclivity or cliff; and is naturally perforated into a number of cavities, whose arches make it resemble a rough ecclesiastical building. A narrow chasm, called the Salt Pan, at the head of the dell, presents features strikingly romantic, and is swept, after a prolonged range, by an impetuous torrent. Lead ore, barytes, calamine, and spars are plentiful. Lead appears to have been worked here by the Romans; and a conical piece, of between 30 and 40 lbs., was found about 1820, near Leam Hall. Coins of Probus, Gallienus, Victorinus, Claudius, and other Roman emperors, are occasionally discovered. Ancient British remains also are numerous. A Druidical circle, about 90 feet in diameter, occurs at Wet-withins, on Eyam moor; and a barrow, more than 100 feet in diameter at the base, and nearly 30 feet high, is near the Old Twelve Meers mine, on Eyam edge. Monpesson, the rector of the parish in 1666, is noted for surpassing exertions to stay a visitation of the plague, which carried off 259 inhabitants of the village, out of a total of 350; and he administered the consolations of religion to his mourning people at Cucklet church. The shock of the great earthquake which nearly destroyed Lisbon, in 1755, was very sensibly felt in the lead mines of Eyam. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Lichfield. Value, £226.* Patrons, the Dukes of Devonshire and Buckingham. The church is partly of the time of Henry II., partly of the time of Elizabeth; has a chancel and a tower of the year 1600; and contains some interesting ancient figures, and an early English font. The churchyard has a figured Saxon cross, about 8 feet high; and abounds in epitaphs, both curious and beautiful. S. T. Hall says, -"A cemetery more indicative of local history and character than this, it would be difficult to find in the whole of England; and I never read a more interesting chapter of village biography than here." There are three-Methodist chapels, a subscription library, a free school, and charities £24. Miss Seward was a native; and the Rev. Mr. Cunningham was many years curate. An old mansion at Eyam belonged to a relation of President Bradshaw; and an old mill was on a property of the Eyres, which dated from the Conquest.


(John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72))

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "a village, a township, and a parish"   (ADL Feature Type: "populated places")
Administrative units: Eyam AP/CP       Bakewell PLU/RegD       Derbyshire AncC
Place names: AIUNE     |     EYAM
Place: Eyam

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