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After a violent contest of nearly a hundred and fifty years, the Heptarchy being established, the county again changed its masters, and was incorporated with Mercia, [the kingdom of Mercia which was founded by Cridda in 582 and ended in 874, included Gloucester, Hereford, Worcester, Warwick, Leicester, Rutland, Northampton, Lincoln, Huntingdon, Bedford, Buckingham, Oxford, Stafford, Derby, Salop, Nottingham, Chester, and part of Hereford] the largest, if not the most powerful of the seven in the kingdom. Greater powers than those which the new act confers, are requisite, that a spacious market may be provided, that the streets may be relieved from the encumbrance of booths, sheds and shambles, and that the monthly cattle fairs, by which the safety of passengers is endangered, and more than one of their senses are grievously annoyed, may be removed to some eligible contiguous situation.
The British Princes long disputed these favourite possessions of their ancestors, and though they were compelled by the war-like King Offa, and a confederacy of Saxon Princes, to retreat to Mathrafael among the mountains of Powis, they frequently made inroads on their usurping neighbours. The pavement, too, must ever continue rugged and jolting, while three ton wagon loads of coals, which might be carried across the Raven meadow, are tamely suffered to drag along the streets.
[The Ordovices occupied the counties of Flint, Denbigh, Merioneth, Caernarvon, the Isle of Anglesey, and part of Salop.] While Britain remained subject to the Romans, this county formed part of the province of Flavia Caesariensis: [Flavia Caesariensis comprehended the middle of England. The narrowest parts of the several streets have been progressively widened, and their corners rounded; as at Lee Stalls in Mardol Head; at the turning from Pride Hill, into High Street; from Carrier's End towards Murivance and Barker street; from Swan Hill, into Cross Hill.
There were four other provinces, viz., Britannia Prima, the South; Britannia Seconds, Wales; and Marina Caesariensis and Valencia, the Northern counties. The line of houses has in many places been rendered straight, by the removal of projecting steps and windows.
During the time of the Saxons, the Severn was considered the ancient boundary between England and Wales; the lands conquered by Offa on the western side of that river were annexed to the kingdom of Mercia, and afterwards incorporated with the monarchy, by Alfred the Great. The hundred of Clun, commonly called the honour of Clun. shire, continuing southward from Knighton in Radnorshire, over part of Shropshire, entering Montgomeryshire, between Bishopscastle and Newtown. It is again visible in Shropshire near Llanymynech, crosses the Race Course near Oswestry, descends to the Ceiriog near Chirk, where it again enters Wales, and terminates in the parish of Mold, in Flintshire. Carey in his "English Atlas," states Shropshire to be 47 miles long, 38 broad, and 210 in circumference, containing 1,320 square miles; Wilts to be 54 miles long, 34 broad, and 210 in circuit, containing 1,200 square miles, or 760,000 acres. Melverley was anciently called THE HUNDRED OF OSWESTRY. The latter name signifies a sea-like place, Melverley being much subject to floods. The hundred of Pimhill is bounded on the north by Flintshire, on the east by the hundred of Bradford and the liberties of Shrewsbury; on the south by the liberties of Shrewsbury and the hundred of Ford; and on the west by the hundred of Oswestry. Pimhill contains a mixture of boggy land, and of sand lying over a red sand-stone, with a greater proportion of sound wheat land. Many ineffectual attempts had been made to obtain a new act; but the town meetings convened for that purpose had uniformly withheld their consent to such a measure.The river Severn, running through the county from northwest, to south-east, divides it into parts which are not very unequal. An artificial division is made by the Roman highway, called Watling Street, which entering the county on the east, between Crackley-bank and Weston, passes through it in a bending line, to Leintwardine in Herefordshire, on the southern borders. The Parish of Sellatyn, contains the townships of 1. The parish contains 1,450 acres, and has two constables. The parish of Oswestry, in the lower division of the hundred, contains only the township of Morton. The Ellesmere canal runs through the whole hundred, and the river Severn enters Shropshire and bounds the northern part of the hundred near Melverly, where it unites with the Vyrnwy, or Virniew, which bounds it on the north-west, and first touches the county about Llanymynech. The population of this hundred in 1821 was 11,874; the number of inhabited houses, 2,112; the number of families, chiefly employed in agriculture, 1,423; in trade and manufactures, 696. At length on the 28th of May, 1821, a bill received the royal assent, which though not so perfect as it might have been, has conferred such powers upon a Committee of Management as have already produced considerable effects.
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It is used only partially as a main road, and deserves much less the name of a division, than the turnpike roads that run through Shrewsbury, from Whitchurch to Ludlow, and from Shiffnal to Oswestry. (a chapelry,) The other townships in this parish, viz., Oswestry, Aston, Crickheath, Cynnynion, Hisland, Llanforda, Maesbury, Middleton, Pentregaer, Sweeney, Treferclawdd, Trefounen, Trefiach, Wootton, and Weston Cotton, are in the upper division. The parish of Llanymynech, in the lower division of the hundred of Oswestry, contains only the township of Treprennal. Dovaston, near West Felton, and Old Marton, 3 miles south-west of Ellesmere, the birth place of Mr. It comprehends the Ellesmere and Baschurch divisions. The committee was selected on the 18th of June, and immediately proceeded to their task.