Page:Highways and Byways in Sussex.djvu/163

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Church Street, Steyning.png

Church Street, Steyning


CHAPTER XV


STEYNING AND BRAMBER


Saint Cuthman and his mother—Steyning's architecture—Steyning's wise passiveness—Bramber castle—A corrupt pocket borough—A Taxidermist-humorist—Joseph Poorgrass in Sussex—The widow of Beeding and the Romney—A digression on curio-hunting.

Of great interest and antiquity is Steyning, the little grey and red town which huddles under the hill four miles to Henfield's south-west.

The beginnings of Steyning are lost in the distance. Its church was founded, probably in the eighth century, by St. Cuthman, an early Christian whose adventures were more than usually quaint. He began by tending his father's sheep, with which occupation his first miracle was associated. Being called one day to dinner, and having no one to take his place as shepherd, he drew a circle round the flock with his crook,