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The Church Bell Inventory of Northamptonshire and Rutland.
a PDGCBR past and present presentation.






Inscriptions.


Below, are a selection of inscription verses taken exclusively from bells, past and present, incorporated in the Peterborough Diocese Churches of Northamptonshire and Rutland. Some are quite common and others, unique. Understanding the history of inscriptions is a task in its own right together with correct translations. 

In several instances, these translations (or interpretations) have been resolved by courtesy of the "Classics dept. at MCS Oxford".


Pre-reformation inscriptions.

  • MARIA VOCOR ANO : DNI : M : CCC : XVII   [ Cold Ashby ]
    • I am called Mary / Maria calls ? A.D. 1317
  • FIT TVA LAVRENTI FORMA CAMPANA DECENTI 
    • Thy bell, O Lawrence, is made in proper form.
  • NOS PRECE OMNES SANC TORVM DEFENDAS XPE TVORVM 
    • By the prayer of Thy Saints protect us all O Christ.

  • Sit Nomen Domini Benedictum.
    • Blessed be the Name of the Lord
  • Sit Nomen Diuini Ihesu  - benedictum 
    • Blessed be the name of the Divine Jesus.  
  • SANCTE CONFESSOR CRISTI BENEDICTI ORA PRO NOBIS DEVM. (cast between 1216 - 1272)
    • Holy ........ pray for us ...

"Sancta - - - - - - Ora Pro Nobis", was the most commonest inscription c1350 onwards.

  • Sancta Katarina Ora pro nobis..
    • Holy Katharine pray for us
  • Sancta Maria Ora pro nobis..
    • Holy Mary pray for us
  • Sancte Botolfe Ora Pro Nobis  
    • Holy Botolfe pray for us 
  • Sancta Agatha Ora Pro Nobis
    • Holy Agatha pray for us.
  • Sancte Andrea Ora Pro Nobis.
  • Sancta Anna Ora Pro Nobis
    • Holy Anna pray for us  
  • Sancta Fides Ora Pro Nobis
    • Saint Faith pray for us 
  • sancte petri ora pronobis 
    • Holy Peter pray for us 
  • Johannes Est Nomen Eius / IOHANNES EST NOMEN EIVS.
    • His name is John. 
  • In Multis Annis Resonet Campana Johannis 
    • For many years shall John's bell resound. 
  • MARIA
  • S.  M A G A R E T A 
  • GABRIEL. 
  • S  S  S 
  • S   S. 
  • Missi De Celis Haboe Nomen Gabrielis (c1480)
    • I have the name of Gabriel, [who was] sent to Heaven.
  • Nomen Magdalene Campana Geret Mvllade.
    • This bell shall bear the melodious name of Magdalene. 
  • Mille quadringentis octogintaque duobus annis fusa fui lapsis ab origine chricti agenetrice pia protervis dicta Maria. (1482).
    • “ I was poured when 1482 shameful years had passed from the birth of Christ by his holy mother, called Mary”
    • (Translation, courtesy of Classics dept. at MCS Oxford).     [ Earlier bell at Maidwell ]
  • AVE MARIA GRACIA PLENA 
    • Hail Mary, full of Grace.
  • AVE MARIA GRACIA PLENA DOMINUS TECWM 
    • Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee.
  • AVE REX GENTIS ANGLORVM 
    • Hail King of the English nation.
  • Celorum xte placeat tibi rex sonus iste. 
    • O Christ the King of Heaven, may this sound be pleasing to Thee.
  • IHS NAZARENVS REX IVDEORVM. 
    • Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews.
  • SVM ROSA PVLSATA MVNDI MARIA VOCATA SANCTE PETRE : 
    • I being rung am called Maria rose of the world. Saint Peter :
  • principio ...?... sine dulces hic honor caterine 
    • In the first place allow here the honour of sweet Catharine.
  • personet hec celis dulcissima vox gabrielis.
    • May this most sweet sound of Gabriel sound through the heavens. 
  • EDWARDI NOTA SONET NEC DVLCISISMA TOTA.
    • Let this most sweet note of Edward fully sound.
  • PRO THOME LAVDE RESONABO MODO SINE FRAUDE. 
    • For the praise of Thomas I will now resound without deceit.
  • Nova Campana Margareta est honorata
  • VLTIMA SV TRINA CAMPANA VOCOR KTERINA. 
    • I the last am the third bell : I am called Katherine.
  • RICHARD : DE WAMBIS : ME : FESIT
    • Richard de Wybis made me. 
  • SYMON DE HAZFELDE ME FECIT.  
    • Symon de Hazfelde made me.  
  • JOHES ZORKE FECIT ME IN HONORE BEATE MARIE  (c1425)
    • John Yorke made me
  • INNORE SATTI   IOHANNES SLEYT ME FECIT. 
    • ........ John Sleyt made me.
  • IN NOIE IHS MARIA 
    • In the name of JESUS. Mary.
  • Vox Augustini Sonet In Aure Dei 
    • Let the voice of Augustine sound in the ear of God.
  • IN HONORE SANCTI EIUDII.
    • In honour of Saint Giles. 
  • LAUS TIBI DOMINE. 
    • Praise to Thee O Lord.
  • XPE : AVDI : NOS. 
    • O Christ hear us.


Inscriptions used by the Watts family and other founders.

  • IH’S : NAZARENVS REX : IVDEORVM FILI : DEI MISERERE : MEI 
    • Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews, O Son of God have mercy on me.
  • CELORVM CHRSTE PLATIAT TIBI REX SONVS ISTE 
    • O Christ the King of Heaven, may this sound be pleasing to Thee.
  • CVM SONO SI NON VIS VENERE NVNQVAM AD PRECES CYPIES IRE 
    • If you be unwilling to come when I call, To prayers you’ll not wish to go at all.
  • GOD SAVE THE KING
  • GOD SAVE THE QUEEN.
  • ABCD EFGHI KLMNO PQRST
  • ABCDEF  GHIKLMN  OPQRST  
  • ABCD EFGHI KLMNO 
  • ABCDE FGHIK LMNO 
  • CUM CUM AND PRAIE.
    • Come, come and pray
  • CUM CUM AND PRAE .
    • Come, come and pray
  • GOD BLESS OUR QUEENE ELIZABETH 1587 
  • OBE THE QUENE 
    • Obey the Queen.
  • PVLSOR & PVLSO JVBILO ET PLANGO SIC VITA HOMINIS 1640.
    • I am struck and I strike, I rejoice and I mourn, such is the life of man. 
    • (Translation, courtesy of Classics dept. at MCS Oxford).      [ Stanford on Avon ].


Newcombe family, Newcombe and Watts partnership.
  • maria mater dei memento mei.
    • Mary, mother of God, remember me.
  • NUNC MARTNE EGO CANA VOBIS ORE IVCVNDO REMMEDGHVNTE  1597. 
    • Now O Martin, I sing to you with pleasant voice.
  • ACDEFGHIKLMNOPQRST VW 
  • BE YT KNOWNE TO ALL THAT DOTH ME SEE THAT NEWCOMBE OF LEICESTER MADE MEE     
  • PRAISE THE LORDE 1601
  • EDWARD NICUM 
  • EDWARDE NEWCOMEN
  • NEWCOMBE OF LEICESTER MADE MEE 1606. 



Inscriptions commonly used by the Bagley family.
  • CANTATE DOMINO CANTICVM NOVVM .
    • Sing unto the Lord a new song
  • MATTHEW BAGLEY MADE MEE
  • WILLIAM BAGLEY MADE MEE 1701. 
  • WILLIAM BAGLEY OF NORTHAMPTON HE MADE MEE
  • BE IT KNOWN TO ALL THAT DOE ME SE THAT WILLIAM BAGLEY OF CHALCOMBE MADE ME 1703.  
  • HENRICVS BAGLEY ME FECIT PRO REGE ET ECLESIA 
  • HENRICVS BAGLEY ME FECIT 1683.
  • For the King and the Church Henry Bagley made me 1683.
  • HENREY BAGLEY MADE MEE.
  • HENRY BAGLEY MADE MEE. 
  • LET AARONS BELLS CONTINUALLY AMONGST US RUNG. THE WORD STILL PREACHED AND HALLELUJAH SUNG. GOD BE OVR GOOD SPEED H.B. MA. MEE  
  • GOD SAVE OVR QUEEN AND PRESARVE HER PEACE. 
  • BE IT KNOWNE TO ALL THAT DO ME SEE THAT H. BAGLEY OF NTN MA’ MEE 

Inscriptions commonly used by the Eayre family.
  • T. & J. EAYRE DE KETTERING FECERUNT 1718.  
  • THO : EAYRE DE KETTERING FECIT ANNO DOMINI 1727.
  • IHS NAZARENUS REX JUDEORUM FILI DEI MISERERE MEI.
    • Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews, O Son of God have mercy on me.
  • GLORIA PATRI FILIO ET SPIRITUI SANCTO. ANNO DOM. 
    • Glory be to the Father, and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost.
  • OMNIA FIANT AD GLORIAM DEI 
    • Let all be done to the glory of God.
  • Cum Sono Si Non Vis Venire Nunquam Ad Preces Cupies Ire. 
    • If you be unwilling to come when I call To prayers you’ll not wish to go at all.
  • TINNITVS RAPIDOS SCINTILLANS SPARGO PER AVRAS THOS EAYRE ME FECIT 1758.
    • Sparkling I spread rapid tinklings through the ears.  
  • Sparkling I spread rapid tinklings through the ears. 1761.
  • Untouch’d am silent strike me and I will sing sweetly. 1761.
  • Wee are ordain’d for the praise of the Lord — Eayre Kettering Fecit. 1761.
  • JOSEPH EAYRE ST. NEOTS FECIT 1767. 


Edward Arnold.

  • EDWARD ARNOLD ST NEOTS FECIT 1772
  • EDWD ARNOLD FECIT 1774
  • EDWD ARNOLD ST NEOTS FECIT 1774
  • EDWD ARNOLD ST NEOTS HUNTINGDONSHIRE FECIT 1774
  • EDWARD ARNOLD LEICESTER FECIT 

Taylor family.

  • R : TAYLOR ST NEOTS FECIT 1790.
  • ROBERT TAYLOR FOUNDER ST NEOTS FECIT 1803. 
  • R. TAYLOR ST. NEOTS FECIT 1815 
  • TAYLOR & SONS   FOUNDERS  OXFORD & ST. NEOTS AUGT. 22 1822.
  • R. TAYLOR & SONS OXFORD  MDCCCXXVII (1827)  
  • W. & J. TAYLOR FOUNDERS 1832.
  • J TAYLOR FOUNDER OXFORD & BIDEFORD 1833.  
  • J TAYLOR FOUNDER OXFORD 1841. 
  • JOHN TAYLOR & SON FOUNDERS LOUGHBOROUGH LATE OF OXFORD & SAINT NEOTS 1848.  
  • J TAYLOR & Co FOUNDERS LOUGHBOROUGH 
  • JOHN TAYLOR AND SON FOUNDERS LOUGHBOROUGH, 

Norris family.

  • THOMAS NORRIS MADE ME 1652
  • THOMAS NORRIS MADE MEE 1676. 
  • TOBIAS NORRIS CAST ME 1675.
  • Tobie Norris made me: 
  • SVM ROSA PVLSATA MVNDI MARIA VOCATA
    • I being rung am called Maria rose of the world.
  • NON : CLAMOR : SED : AMOR : CANTAT : IN : AURE : DEI : 1616.
    • Love’s voice not noise sings in the ear of God. 
  • OMNIA FIANT AD GLORIAM DEI 
    • Let all be done to the glory of God.
  • MVLTI VOCATI PAVCI ELECTI
    • Many called, few chosen.
  • CVM VOCO AD ECCLESIAM VENITI
    • When I call, come to Church.
  • NON SONO ANNIMABVS MORTVORVM SED AVRIBVS VIVENTIVM. 
    • I sound not for the souls of the dead, but for the ears of the living. 

John Briant.
  • J. BRIANT HERTFORD FECIT
  • JOHN BRIANT FECIT HERTFORD 1809


Bryan Eldridge.

  • Bryanus Eldridge me fecit
    • Bryan Eldridge made me

Mears family, partnerships and other Whitechapel founders.

  • LESTER & PACK OF LONDON FECIT 1764. 
  • PACK & CHAPMAN OF LONDON FECIT 1773. 
  • THOMAS MEARS OF LONDON FECIT, 1813
  • C ET G MEARS LONDONI FECERUNT (1847)
  • G. MEARS FOUNDER LONDON 1859. 
  • MEARS AND STAINBANK FOUNDERS LONDON. (1867)
  • ROBERT STAINBANK FOUNDER LONDON 1868. 
  • igne fracta 1868.
    • Cracked by fire 1868

Rudhall family.

  • ABR RUDHALL OF GLOUCESTER

Thomas Russell.

  • THOMAS RVSSELL MADE ME 1723.JOHN SMITH GAVE THIS BELL IN 1494. 
  • THOMAS RUSSELL OF WOOTTON CAST THIS PEAL AND NEW CAST IN 1723. E. MABBETT AND R. SMITH CHURCHWARDENS.
  • THOMAS RVSSELL IN THE COVNTY OF BEDFORD MADE MEE   JAMES HALLOWELL CHVRCH WARDEN 1732. 
  • THOMAS RVSSELL OF WOOTTON MADE ME


Other founders and inscriptions.

  • BARTHOLOMEW ATTVN 1592. 
  • ROBERT ATTON MADE ME 1619. 
  • CHRISTOPHER GRAYE MADE ME 1663.
  • JOHN HODSON MADE ME 1663.
  • RICHARD KEENE CAST THIS RING 1672.
  • CHANDELER MADE ME 1684.   
  • ALEXANDER RIGBY MADE ME 1705
  • HENRY PENN MADE ME 1709.
  • EDWARD HEMINS FECT 1731. 
  • GEO. HEDDERLY OF NOTTINGHAM FECIT 1785. 
  • J. WARNER & SONS LONDON 1867. 

Other inscriptions.
  • STATVTVM EST OMNIBVS SEMEL MORI 1633.
    • It is appointed unto all men once to die
  • GRATA SIT ARGUTA RESONANS CAMPANULA VOCE
    • May the little bell be pleasant, sounding with clear tone.
  • GRATUM OPUS AGRICOLUS.
    • Labour is pleasant to the husbandmen.
  • Vox dni ihu xpi wox ex ultacionis
  • The voice of the Lord Jesus Christ is a voice of exultation.
  • NON VERBO SED VOCE RESONABO DOMINE LAVDEM 
    • Not by word but by voice I will resound the Praise of the Lord.
  • GIVE GOD THE PRAISE 
  • JHESUS BE OUR SPEDE 
  • FEARE GOD AND HONOR THE KING 1685 
  • WHEN I DO RING OR TOLE MY VOYCE IS SPENT THAT MEN MAY COM TO HERE GODS WORD AND SO REPENT  1676.  
  • LOVE HORTETH NOT  [Hannington]
  • CVM : VOCO : VENITE
    • Come when I call.




Latter day inscriptions.

  • GOD SAVE QUEEN ELIZABETH II IN THE YEAR OUR LORD. ONE THOUSAND NINE HUNDRED AND NINETY THREE [Brixworth]
  • MY NAME IS PAUL COME WHEN I CALL / DIAMOND JUBILEE OF QUEEN ELIZABETH II 2012  [Marston Trussell] 


 










^^^  Bell locations, table layout only  ^^^

Bell No.    (Previous/earlier bell No.)    Date    Founder    Special attributes   Inscription 
Column
  Extra columns 1a,1b, displayed
where applicable.
(Bell No.) in brackets. 
  Column
2
  Column
 3
  Auxiliary column 3a,
displayed
where applicable 
  Column


All tabulated abbreviations :
c = circa ..........  ? = uncertainty .......... preR = pre-reformation date ............... rc = recast ............... unr = unringable ..............

Auxiliary bell types >>>  S = Sanctus;    Sv = Service;    C = Clock;    A = Angelus;    B = Bourdon;    Un = Unused;    Dis = Disused;
 

Special attributes abbreviations : 
KT = Keltek Trust ...... RH = Royal-headed bell ...... 
RHrc = Royal-headed bell recast ...... ChCT = Churches Conservation Trust ......

Branch abbreviations as and where used.
Cw = Culworth; ..... Dav = Daventry; ..... Gsb = Guilsborough; ..... Kett = Kettering; ..... Ntn = Northampton; ..... Pet; ..... Peterborough; ..... Rut = Rutland; ..... Thr = Thrapston; ..... Tow = Towcester; ..... Well = Wellingborough;

Founder abbreviations.

A : EA - Edward Arnold.........  B&RA - Bartholomew & Robert Atton......  BA - Bartholomew Atton......  RA - Robert Atton;

Bagley : Bg - Bagley (generic)...... HB - Henry Bagley...... H1B - Henry I Bagley...... H2B - Henry II Bagley...... H3B - Henry III Bagley...... MB - Matthew Bagley...... M1B - Matthew I Bagley...... M3B - Matthew III Bagley...... WB - William Bagley;

B : JhBb - John Barber...... JB&C - James Barwell & Co...... TmBt - Thomas Bett...... RcB - Richard Benetlye...... WmBs - William Blews & Sons...... TB - Thomas Bond...... AB - Alfred Bowell...... BrF - Brassfounders...... JB - John Briant...... TmsB - Thomas Bullisdon...... BsEF - Bury St. Edmunds Foundry; 

C : CC - Charles Carr...... JsC - Joseph Carter...... RbC - Robert Catlin...... RC - Robert Chamberlain...... WC - William Chamberlain...... R3C - Richard III Chandler...... Ch&M - Chapman & Mears...... P&C - Pack & Chapman...... TC - Thomas Clay...... JdeC - John de Colsale...... CvSS - Covington of Stony Stratford;

D : JDB - John Danyell successor 'Brede' ...... MD - Michael Darbie...... WmD - William Dawe...... WD - William Dobson; 

Eayre : JE - Joseph Eayre...... T1E - Thomas I Eayre...... T2E - Thomas II Eayre...... T&JE - Thomas & John Eayre; 

E : IE - Islip Edmunds...... Eijs - Eijsbouts...... B2E - Bryan II Eldridge...... WmE - William Emerton;

F : WdeF - William de Flint;

G : G&J - Gillett & Johnson...... CG - Christopher Graye;

H : EH - Edward Hall...... TmHr - Thomas Harrys...... WH - William Haulsey...... SdeH - Symon de Hazfelde...... GgH - George Hedderly...... T1H - Thomas I Hedderly...... EdwH - Edward Hemins...... JsHe - Jo[h]anna Hille...... RHe - R. Hille...... JH - John Hodson...... RcH - Richard Holdfield;  

K : JhK - John Kebyll...... JK - James Keene...... RK - Richard Keene...... E1K - Ellis I Knight;

L : RgL - Roger Landen...... L&P - Lester & Pack...... LeicF - Leicester Foundry...... LdnF - London Foundry...... LBS - London Foundry, Balcombe Shield;

Mears : CGM - Charles & George Mears...... GMc - George Mears & Co...... GM - George Mears...... GMs - George Mears & Son...... TMs - Thomas Mears & Son...... T1M - Thomas I Mears...... T2M - Thomas II Mears...... M&S - Mears & Stainbank...... Ch&M - Chapman & Mears; 

M : Mg - Mellours (generic)...... RcM - Richard Mellours...... RM - Robert Mellours...... RbMt - Robert Mot; 

Newcombe : N - Newcombe...... Ng - Newcombe (generic)...... N&W - Newcombe & Watts...... EN - Edward Newcombe...... T1N - Thomas I Newcombe...... T2N - Thomas II Newcombe...... R1N - Robert I Newcombe ........ R2N - Robert II Newcombe;

N : NV&C - Naylor Vickers & Co...... WmNn - William Noone;

Norris : MwN - Matthew Norris...... TmN - Thomas Norris...... Tb1N - Tobias I Norris...... Tb3N - Tobias III Norris;  

O : H2O - Henry II Oldfield...... TO - Thomas Osborn;

P : P&C - Pack & Chapman...... L&P - Lester & Pack...... HP - Henry Penn...... RPd - R. Purdue;

R : AxR - Alexander Rigby......TR - Thomas Russell;

Rudhall : A1R - Abraham I Rudhall ........ A2R - Abraham II Rudhall ........ TRud - Thomas Rudhall ........ Rd-g - Rudhall (generic); 

Rufford : Rg - Rufford (generic) ........ JR - John Rufford ......... WR - William Rufford; 

S : RcS - Richard Sanders...... Skg - Seliok (generic)...... JS - John Seliok...... Rc2S - Richard II Seliok...... JhS - John Sleyt...... RS - Robert Stainbank...... M&S - Mears & Stainbank...... JStd - John Sturdy...... StmF - Stamford Foundry; 

Taylor : JT - John Taylor & Co......  JTs - John Taylor & Son......  JTss - John Taylor & Sons...... JTy - John Taylor (Buckland Brewer, Oxford, Loughborough)......  JTBF - J. Taylor Bell Founders......
RT - Robert Taylor......  RTs - Robert Taylor & Son......  RTss - Robert Taylor & Sons......  W&JT - William & John Taylor......  WT - William Taylor...... TE&S - Taylor, Eayre & Smith; 

W : JWs - J. Warner & Sons...... WG - Wesley Group...... WBF - Whitechapel Bell Foundry...... JhWy - John Woolley...... RcW - Richard Wood...... WorcF - Worcester Foundry...... RdeW - Richard de Wymbis(h);

Watts : W - Watts......Wg - Watts (generic)......FW - Francis Watts...... H1W - Hugh I Watts...... H2W - Hugh II Watts...... WW - William Watts...... N&W - Newcombe & Watts;

Y : JY - John Yorke (John of York)


Acknowledgements :
  • Daventry branch inscription inventories; Guilsborough branch inscription inventory;
  • John Taylor Bellfoundry Archives, (kindly extracted by Chris Pickford, co-archivist at the J.T. Bellfoundry Museum and Archives).
  • Geoff Pullin - PDGCBR; Barry Care - Moulton; Brian Hardie - Nassington; Chris Dalton; Ringing World; Michael Lee - Fotheringhay;
  • The Bells of St. Lawrence, Towcester; 
  • "Church Bells of Northamptonshire" & "Church Bells of Rutland", both books by Thomas North;
  • Dove's Guide; 
  • 1989 PDGCBR inventory by Denis Pearson;
  • Inventory of The Church Bells of Northamptonshire and Rutland in 1938 by Rev. E. S. Powell, M.A.
  • Photographs taken by the author©, except one, where otherwise mentioned.©A.Hiams.

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