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the house appointed for the reception of poor travellers, situated on the north side of the High-street, in which, agreeable to the benevolent design of the donor, poor travellers have lodging and fourpence each; and, that this charity may be the more generally known, the following inscription is fixed over the door:
RICHARD WATTS, Esq.
Founded this Charity
For six poor Travellers,
And Fourpence, each.
In Honour of his Memory,
And Inducement to his Example,
Has caused this Stone
A. D. 17710
It is said, that the reason why Mr. Watts excluded Proctors from partaking of this charity was in consequence of one of that profession having been employed to make the former gentleman's will, while he was labouring under a dangerous fit of illness, but who, afterwards recovering, and looking over the writings, wishing to see what had been done, found, to his surprise, that, contrary to his own benevolent intentions, the Proctor had so framed the will as to make it entirely in favour of himself.
The Mayor and Citizens of this city caused a monument to be erected to his memory, on the south side of the door, entering into the choir of the cathedral; on the top of this monument is a bust of Mr. Watts, given by
Joseph Brooke, Esq. as appears by the following inscription under the bust:
Archetypum hunc dedit
On the marble monument beneath it :
“ Sacred to the memory of Richard Watts, Esq. a principal benefactor to this city, who departed this life, Sept. 10, 1579, at his mansion-house on Bully-hill, called Satis, (so named by Q. Elizabeth, of glorious memory,)and lies interred near this place, as by his will doth plainly appear. By which will, dated Aug. 22, and proved Sept. 25, 1579, he founded an alms-house for the relief of poor people, and for the reception of six poor travellers
every night, and for employing the poor of this city.
In respect to the dock-yard at Chatham, Camden, speaking of it, says, “ it is the best-appointed arsenal the sun ever saw.”
Between the 54th and 55th milestones is the ancient village of Harbledown. This was the place that formerly held that precious relic called St. Thomas à Becket's slipper, neatly set in copper and chrystal, mentioned by Erasmus. Numerous pilgrims to the shrine of St. Thomas used to stop here, and kiss his slipper, as a preparation for their more solemn approach to his tomb, in that blind
when priestcraft had its fullest ed by bigotry and superstition, even so
far as to bring men down upon their knees to a heap of putrid dust, when the ambitious spirit it once contained had made its flight to a far more awful region, where he will be convinced of his own insignificance, and be made to answer for all the sacerdotal perfidy and hypocrisy he practised, not only on his deluded followers, but shameful cruelty on his King, who had raised this ignominious and ungrateful monster, from the lowest order of life, to the most exalted state of affluence and splendor. The mitre of this imperious prelate is deposited among the many sacred vestiges at St. Bertram's church at St. Omer's, in French Flanders, which is much revered by every devotee of the Roman church.