THE ENCYCLOPÆDIA BRITANNICA

A DICTIONARY OF ARTS, SCIENCES, LITERATURE AND GENERAL INFORMATION

ELEVENTH EDITION 1911

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BATTLE, a market-town in the Rye parliamentary division of Sussex, England, 54½ m. S.E. by S. from London by the South Eastern & Chatham railway. Pop. of urban district (1901) 2996. It is pleasantly situated in an undulating well-wooded district, 7 m. from the sea at Hastings. Its name is derived from the conflict in 1066, which insured to William the Norman the crown of England (see also Battle Abbey Roll). Before the battle, in which King Harold fell, William vowed to build an abbey on the spot if he should prove victorious, and in 1094 the consecration took place with great pomp. The gatehouse, forming a picturesque termination to the main street of the town, is Decorated; and there also remain parts of the foundations of the Norman church, of the Perpendicular cloisters, and of the Early English refectory. A mansion occupies part of the site, and incorporates some of the ancient building. The church of St Mary is of various dates, the earliest portions being transitional Norman.

See Chronicles of Battle Abbey. 1066-1176, translated, &c., by M.A. Lower (London, 1851).

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