b'The West Window of Bishop Wilton ChurchThe Athelstan GiftAndrew SeftonO ne of the often quoted early references to BishopDirectory of 1823 nor any volume of Kellys or Whites Wilton was the gift of the Manor of BishopDirectories or Thomas Langdales Topographical Wilton by King Athelstan (895-939) to the See of YorkDictionary of Yorkshire of 1822.The main source of thereby making it a possession of the Archbishopsit is in the famous Francis Drake work Eboracum; of York. The obvious importance of this event tothe History and Antiquities of the City of York, first the village is illustrated by the depiction of Athelstanpublished in 1736. Drake says the following:along with St. John of Beverley in the west window Mr. Willis (a) says this archbishop [Wulstanus] of the church, to the left and right of St. Edith (seeobtained to his see Beverley, Ripon, Bishop-Wilton, photographs above). Otley, Cawood and the barony of Sherburn.My own interpretation is that Athelstan is looking toReference (a) refers to Willis on Cath. Churches.his left in the direction of St. Edith, St. John is lookingBy chance, I found at a recent book fair a rebound to his right towards her and Saint Edith seems to lookoriginal copy of Browne Willis A Survey of Cathedrals back to Athelstan with a grateful serene expressionpublished in 1726.and holds a book, possibly a bible? Athelstan seemsDrake goes further than Willis by later stating to be offering a piece of paper to Saint Edith and Saintthat Bishop Wilton was given (along with the other John seems to be beckoning someone? Underneathpossessions) together with three carucates of land the window it says In affectionate remembrance of Sirthere, but does not state his source for this. In an Tatton Sykes Bart and Mary Anne Lady SykesThiseffort to establish a source, I checked the Torre window is dedicated by their daughter Mary - 1864.manuscript which is held in York Minster Library. It was probably constructed by Clayton & Bell 1in theJames Torre (or Torr) lived 1649-1699 and was the Sykes restoration. Was this window invented at thefirst historian to look at the records of the Diocese of time, or was it from an earlier depiction prior to theYork from a historical perspective. However, I could restoration? We may never know. find no reference there to any 10th century charter I thought I would investigate the actual sourcementioning Bishop Wilton.of the story of the gift of Athelstan to see if it wasThe only other reference was for 1279, when correct. The first place to look was in the publishedWilliam, Archbishop of York 2was summoned to descriptions of the village. answer the king concerning the plea by what warrant Bulmers 1892 Directory says: The manor washe claims to have gallows, return of writs, estreats, granted by King Athelstan to the archiepiscopal seepleas of withernam, and his own coroners within and of York. No mention of it appears in AllensHistorywithout the city of York and free Warren in lands free of the County of York in 1832, nor does it appear infrom suit, of which Bishop Wilton is included in the list. Sheahan and Whellans History of York and the EastHe pleads that as to gallows he claims those in his Riding of 1856. It is not mentioned in Baines Tradebarony outside York of Sherburn, Wilton, Patrington 1The Buildings of England. Yorkshire: York and the East Riding by Pevsner and Neave2The Yorkshire Archaeological Society Record series CLIYorkshire Hundred and Quo Warranto RollsEdited by Barbara EnglishBULLETIN 13 225'