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Culte Pianure, e delicati Colli,
M DCCC VI.
At the general survey this manor belonged to Richard de Curcy : afterwards to the family of Riparys, or Redvers. Mary, youngest daughtes of Wm. de Redvers, Earl of Devon, (who, as well as his uncle William, was surnamed de Vernon,) married Robert de Courtenay, Baron of Okehampton, in 1214--it is probable that by this marriage the manor of Nuneham pafled into, the family of Courtenay, and thence affumed the name of Nuneham-Courtenay.
After them succeeded the Pollards ; Sir John Pollard of Devon. From them it passed to - Audley of the Court of Wards, called the Rich Audley.
From him to Robert Wright, Bishop of Litchfield, whose son, Calvert Wright, sold it to John Robinson of London, Merchant, (temp. Ol. Cromwell,) knighted in 1660, and made Lieutenant of the Tower.
From the Robinsons it descended to David Earl of Wemys, (who married Mary, daughter and coheir of Sir John Robinson, Baronet,) from whom it was purchased in the year 1710, by Simon, first Lord Harcourt, Lord Chancellor of England.
In which are “ scenes worthy of the bold pencil of Rubens, or to be subjects for the tranquil sunshines of Claude le Lorrain 2," contains twelve hundred acres ;
and from a drive that leads round the inner part of it, are views of the Wittenham hills, of those of Buckinghamshire, and the range of hills which rise above the vale of White Horse :--the drive is also continued through the wood, that falls with a steep descent towards the Thames, which flows at the foot of it, and in this part the right hand bank is very abruptly and picturesquely broken by bold and seep projections. To the left, the river is sometimes seen between the stems of trees, and sometimes concealed by the intervening underwood, which, in one part, is kept low, in order to admit a view of the river, of the house, with the knoll upon which it is placed, and of the mass of
trees that form its back-ground b. On quitting the wood, there is a different view of the house and of the river, and the prospect is terminated by Shotover hill-the drive then circles round a grove, and passes by the ancient Conduit of Carfax, of which the following extract, from a MS. in the Bodleian Library, is a description.
This Conduit was created in the year 1610, by Otho Nicholson, M. A. of Christ Church ; he was afterwards Treasurer to King James I.
The building is an exact square : the arms of the University, City, and Founder are under the cornice : at each corner above it are placed as many fun-dials, and between each are carved in open work the initials of the Founder's name, with a sun, and mermaids, holding mirrors and combs. From the angles of the base spring four arches, which, uniting at the top, support a small octagon; beneath it is a ciftern, above which is Q. Maud riding upon an ox over a ford, in allusion to the name of Oxford: the water being conveyed into the cistern through the ox, from it proceeds a pipe, which runs wine upon extraordinary occasions. Above the foot of each arch, is one of the sup
1 A little farther to the left a path leads to two picturesque cottages, situated near the river, of which, and of the bold woody bank that rises above it, the bridge commands an advantageous view. .