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rdtMBtttfjm (ftamlrrasia* THIRD SEEIES, No. XXXVIIL—APRIL, 1864. ILLUSTRATIONS OF THE PARISH REGISTERS OF PRESTEIGN. (Read at Kington.) The keeping of registers of births, deaths, and marriages, was enjoined, as is well known, by Cromwell, Henry the Eighth's minister, as early as 1538; but they were not kept in country parishes until the beginning of the reign of Elizabeth; and it is rarely that they are met with in so complete a state, or from so early a period, as in the case of the registers of Presteign. Old parish registers can scarcely ever fail, however remote and generally unknown the parish may be, to yield some matters of interest to the antiquary, although the sub¬ jects must necessarily be modern compared with the topics usually discussed at these meetings. I shall confine the present attempt at the illustration of the parish regis¬ ters of Presteign to two points,—the plague or pestilence, and the movements of Charles I during the civil war. The pestilence ravaged Presteign at least at three periods subsequent to the commencement of the regis¬ ters, namely in the years 1593, 1610, and 1636-1637. A modern writer has well observed,—" The terms ' pest,'' pestilence,' and ' plague,' were long employed in Great Britain, as were the corresponding terms in other languages, both in ancient and modern times, to denote simply a disease attacking a great number of persons 3rd see., vol. x. " 7