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Cirencester, Gloucestershire

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Cirencester, Gloucestershire

Cirencester is a market town in east Gloucestershire, England, 93 miles (150 km) west northwest of London. Cirencester lies on the River Churn, a tributary of the River Thames, and is the largest town in the Cotswold District. It is the home of the Royal Agricultural College, the oldest agricultural college in the English-speaking world founded in 1840. The town's Corinium Museum is well known for its extensive Roman collection.
Administrative CountyGloucestershire
Traditional CountyGloucestershire
OS GridSP0201
OS Settlement ClassificationTown
RegionSouth West
Police AuthorityGloucestershire
Fire and Rescue AuthorityGloucestershire
Fire and Rescue AuthorityGloucestershire
Ambulance AuthorityGreat Western
Dialling code01285

Other names by which Cirencester, Gloucestershire has been known in the past

Caer Ceri ~ Caer Cori ~ Cicester ~ Circester ~ Circiter ~ Cirencestre ~ Cirenchester ~ Corinium ~ Corinum ~ Cyren Caester ~ Durocornovium ~ Cirecestre

Cirencester, Gloucestershire in John Bartholomew's "Gazetteer of the British Isles" (1887)

Cirenchester, or Cicester, market town and par. with ry. sta., in E. of Gloucestershire, on the Churn, and on the Thames and Severn Canal, 16 miles SE. of Gloucester -- par., 4749 ac., pop. 7737; town, 2600 ac., pop. 7658; 2 Banks, 1 newspaper. Market-day, Monday; was an important military station of the Romans, who called it Corinum or Corinium, the English invaders adding the usual -ceaster. Numerous Roman antiquities have been found, and remains of the amphitheatre and the ancient walls are still to be seen. Cirencester has relics of an abbey founded in 1117. Its church (St John) is a fine old structure of the 15th century. C. has some mfrs. of woollens, carpets, and cutlery, but its industries are chiefly agricultural. The live stock market is one of the best in the W. of England. About 1½ mile W. of town, adjacent to Oakley Park, is the Royal Agricultural College (1846). C. returned 1 member to Parl. until 1885.

Cirencester, Gloucestershire in "A Topographical Dictionary of England" edited by Samuel Lewis (1848)

CIRENCESTER (St. John the Evangelist), a parish, and the head of a union, comprising the borough of Cirencester, which is a hundred of itself, and several tythings in the hundred of Crowthorne and Minety, E. division of the county of Gloucester, 17 miles (S. E.) from Gloucester, and 89 (W. by N.) from London; containing 6014 inhabitants. Prior to the arrival of the Romans, this was a British city, called Caer Cori, the "town on the river Corin," which the Romans converted into a military station denominated Corinum. This station, from its position near the intersection of the Fosse-way with the Ermin and Ikeneld streets, was one of considerable extent and importance; and vestiges of the vallum and rampart are yet visible on the south-eastern side of the town, where Roman inscriptions, tessellated pavements, coins, urns, vases, the remains of a hypocaust, and various fragments of masonry, have been found. The Saxons added the name Ceaster, of which and its Roman appellation the present is a corruption. The town was the metropolis of the Dobuni, from whom, in 577, it was taken by Ceawlin, King of Wessex. In 656 it was annexed to the kingdom of Mercia; and in 879, the Danes under Guthrum, after their memorable defeat by Alfred in the battle of Ethandune, retired hither, where they remained for a year, during the progress of the negotiations which led to their conversion to Christianity, and their settlement in the island. Canute the Great held a general council here in 1020, when, according to the Saxon Chronicle, "Alderman Ethelward was outlawed, and Edwy, King of the Churls." In the war between Stephen and Matilda, Cirencester Castle, of which the earliest notice then occurs, being garrisoned by Robert, Earl of Gloucester, on the part of the empress, was taken and burnt by the king's troops, in 1142; having been rebuilt, it was garrisoned by the disaffected barons against Henry III., but was taken by the king, who issued his warrant for its immediate demolition. The wall and gates that defended the town continued entire for some time longer.


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