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Malcolm Robinson

The 'nail.'

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There is another reference i have come across to back my theory before this post.

St. Cuthbert's in Elsdon was built in the early 15th century on one of many sites where St. Cuthbert's body was rested on its travels.

The same also apllied too, as of Bedlington.

Interesting fact too about its pele tower, of what we once had at Bedlington.

Most of us are familiar with what the pele tower was actually built for, but at Elsdon they say it was also to protect the rectors

against the unwelcome attentions of the reivers.

Also King John, in the year he was suppose to have visited Bedlington in 1216, he was also at Mitford in 1216, as part of reprisals policy he burnt the village.

It is said that much of the original church was destroyed too.

So they said King John was supposed to have stayed at Bedlington in 1216. This looks more likely looking at this information on Mitford.

Back to the Market Cross. I think looking at what i have uncovered it opens a lot more to debate on Bedlingtons early history.

With the medievil link and St Cuthbert, i would say as Mrs Wade's memories it has religous links. The best guess is what i may have come to find. However, i can only go off

what i have unearthed, but it sounds a really good bet to me now.

If it was for speeches or buying whatever, the Cross could have been the focal point of the village then.

Then when we look at King John, with what he did to Mitford, maybe he did stay at Bedlington after his burning of the village.

Its very interesting, and i thank Malcolm for starting this topic, as i have only began to delve deep into this through him.

There is more i can, or members can look back too and get an insight into the history, and it is interesting, but you need the right archive material to get an insight into things.

I wish i had done this a few years back when Evan Martin was still alive. He was a man that inspired me over the years and i am proud of his help in the time i knew him.

Evan also stated to me that there was no religous link to the Market Cross, (The Nail) as we call it.

But maybe we have hit the nail on the head and got it right.

It looks a good bet to me. And what Evan said about King John in his Bedlington book. We now have a very good reason why he stayed at Bedlington in 1216.

What do you think ?

I think the members and myself have really uncovered the possible links to the topics we talk about here, but now what do you think with what i have unearthed. ?

Lets know

Edited by johndawsonjune1955

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John,

With a bit of luck we might be able to use Newcastle Uni to delve a bit deeper into records and archives, I am especially keen to see if there is anything in the ecclesiastical records because I think given Bedlington's standing at the time that may well be where we can add something to the known history.

I do like your theory about the Nail. I knew it was a focal point for public speaking and the ones I read about were the Chartists. Pity it was moved really because who knows what might have been found if it hadn't been.

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yes your right Malcolm.

I have run this passed a couple of the groups members and given them the info. They are going to look into it more as they think this is acceptable.

They couln't believe its taken a Forum to get people looking into this as it should have been looked into many moons ago.

I will come back on it when i hear from them.

I will be looking into it a bit more too.

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John,

Just read some of the six townships stuff and one of the stories says King John was interested in Bedlington terriers, that's maybe why he came and stopped the night here. If that is true its way further back than what I had understood to be the origins of the breed.

Any evidence?

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"Afterwards King John became a great sportsman, and was keenly interested in Bedlington Terriers, which would probably account for his visit to Bedlington."

That certainty makes them medieval. If its correct I might even change my mind about them!

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"Afterwards King John became a great sportsman, and was keenly interested in Bedlington Terriers, which would probably account for his visit to Bedlington."

That certainty makes them medieval. If its correct I might even change my mind about them!

He was on about the football team, Malcolm.

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It is said that it was a medievil custom to erect a cross marking the place where the coffin of an important person rested each night

on its homeward journey.

Its very interesting to know, but could the body of St. Cuthbert have been laid where the Market Cross was originally.

We may never know, but this medievil custom gives a interesting point of discussion.

You never know, we can't say for sure, but it does look plausible to me now.

What do the members think of this now.

It was also a common practice to mark out a place for exchange and sale of goods - a market place, hence the 'market cross'. This marker didn't always take the form of a cross. I've read somewhere that these market places were usually beside the church but for the life of me I can't find a reference just now. A market cross, according to Wikipedia, is a structure used to mark a market square in market towns. They are often elaborately carved and can be found in most market towns in Britain. They are not, however, all elaborately carved. Wikipedia informs us that:

"These structures range from carved stone spires, obelisks or crosses, common to small market towns such as that in Stalbridge, Dorset to large, ornate covered structures, such as the Chichester Crossâ€

The word obelisk, which comes from the Greek language, is particularly interesting for me. Liddell and Scott (1940), still a valid work of reference today, say this;

á½€bελ-ίσκος , á½, Dim. of á½€bελός I,

A. small spit, skewer, Ar.Ach. 1007, Nu.178, V.354, Av.388, 672, Sotad. Com.1.10, X.HG3.3.7, Arist.Pol.1324b19, PEleph.5.2 (iii B. C.), etc.

2. pl., spits used as money, Plu.Lys.17, Fab.27 ; cf. ὀbολός fin.

3. nail, IG12.313.141 (prob.), 11(2).148.70 (Delos, iii B. C., pl.).

4. = subula, Gloss.

5. window bar, ib. (pl.).

II. anything shaped like a spit : the blade of a two-edged sword, Plb.6.23.7 ; the iron head of the Roman pilum, D.H.5.46.

III. obelisk, D.S.1.46, Str.17.1.27, Plin.HN36.64.

IV. drainage-conduit, "οἱ á¼Î½ τοῖς τείχεσιν á½€.†D.S.19.45, cf. IG 9(1).692.14 (Corc., ii B. C.) ; so perh. πεÏὶ τοῦ πιλῶνος (= πυλῶνος) κaὶ τοá½bιλίσκου (= τοῦ á½€bελίσκου) PLond.2.391.2 (vi A. D.) ; cf. "á½€bολίσκος†1.

Henry George Liddell. Robert Scott. A Greek-English Lexicon. revised and augmented throughout by. Sir Henry Stuart Jones. with the assistance of. Roderick McKenzie. Oxford. Clarendon Press. 1940. http://www.perseus.t...04.0057:entry=o)beli%2Fskos

Look at 3 - ὀbελ-ίσκος (obelisk) would appear to be synonymous with 'nail'. There's no doubt that our nail is an obelisk it fulfills all criteria – tall, four sided, tapering with a pyramid shaped top. Nail is just another name for this structure.

Anybody know how long it's been referred to as the 'nail'.

Edited by Canny lass

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No but I think there is way too much coincidence.....

Bedlington was probably the centre of nail production in the NE at one point and in the same town we see a monument nicknamed the 'nail' and we hear a saying, "paid on the nail" where the 'nail' in questions marks the tradable area or market place so commerce must have taken place there.

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No but I think there is way too much coincidence.....

Bedlington was probably the centre of nail production in the NE at one point and in the same town we see a monument nicknamed the 'nail' and we hear a saying, "paid on the nail" where the 'nail' in questions marks the tradable area or market place so commerce must have taken place there.

Wouldn't that make it eligible as a market cross?

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I think certainly given your proposition about market places being marked with a 'market cross' of whatever form.

Also I think we shouldn't ignore John's supposition neither, it might have been one thing led to another?

If you had already built a marker for a temporary interment, or resting place for a famous body, and it was in a suitable position couldn't they have used that to impose a market place? It would have to be in a prominent position to be noticed anyway or why else do it?

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I think certainly given your proposition about market places being marked with a 'market cross' of whatever form.

Also I think we shouldn't ignore John's supposition neither, it might have been one thing led to another?

If you had already built a marker for a temporary interment, or resting place for a famous body, and it was in a suitable position couldn't they have used that to impose a market place? It would have to be in a prominent position to be noticed anyway or why else do it?

Absolutely not ignoring John's supposition - just adding an alternative supposition.

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Whatever it was originally for, it is an asset to the town.

Our history makes Bedlington unique.

The St Cuthbert connection and a market cross being erected could be a talking point this year as The Lindisfarne Gospels return to Durham for a period of time.

It is my opinion the Gospels should be permanently at Durham, that was where St Cuthbert's body was taken for safe keeping.

The British Library is not an impressive building when compared to Durham Cathedral.

Bedlington is part of that history, and unique. We were part of the Durham Diocese for a considerable time.

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No but I think there is way too much coincidence.....

Bedlington was probably the centre of nail production in the NE at one point and in the same town we see a monument nicknamed the 'nail' and we hear a saying, "paid on the nail" where the 'nail' in questions marks the tradable area or market place so commerce must have taken place there.

It appears that the expression 'pay on the nail' isn't peculiar to Bedlington and doesn't have anything to do with nail production. It was in general use in the English language as early as the 16th century and has been noted as early as the 14th century in Anglo-Norman 'payer sur le ungle' - literally translated ' to pay on the nail'. The nail in question appears to have been a nothing more than a finger nail.

http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/cash-on-the-nail.html

Edited by Canny lass

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I didn't say there was but given what we do know there does seem some fortuitous serendipity at play. As your link shows the likes of Dr Cobham Brewer trying to make the expression fit into his theory seems discredited but that was 1870 and the claim was that the expression was first heard a century before is interesting.

Bedlington Iron Works started early 1700's, primarily for nail production! Well over a century before Brewer made his claim or exactly fitting with the claimed common usage of the term.

Half a dozen coincidences starts to look like evidence, certainly enough for local folklore. :whistle:

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Wouldn't that make it eligible as a market cross?

Vulcan Place. some nailers were situated there. Vulcam Place, named after the god of fire.

Vulcan is from ancient Roman religion and myth.

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