YORKSHIRE, a north-eastern county of England, bounded N. by Durham, E. by the North Sea, S.E. by the Humber estuary (separating it from Lincolnshire), S. by Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire, S.W. for a short distance by Cheshire, W. by Lancashire and N.W. by Westmorland. It is the largest county in England, having an area of 6066.1 sq. m., and being more than double the size of Lincolnshire, which ranks next to it. In a description of the county it is constantly necessary to refer to its three great divisions, the North Riding, East Riding and West Riding (see Riding, and map of England, Sections I., II.).
The centre of the county is a plain, which in the S., about the head of the Humber, resembles the Fens in character. The hills W. of the central plain, covering nearly the whole of the W. Riding and the N.W. of the N. Riding, are part of the great Pennine Chain (q.v.). These hills consist of high-lying moorland, and are not generally remarkable for great beauty of outline. The higher parts are bleak and wild, and the slope towards the central plain is gradual. The chief beauty of the district is to be found in the numerous deeply scored valleys or dales, such as Teesdale, Swaledale, Wensleydale (q.v.), Nidderdale, Wharfedale and Airedale, in which the course of the streams is often broken by waterfalls, such as High Force in Teesdale and Aysgarth Force in Wensleydale.
The hills E. of the central plain cannot be similarly considered as a unit. In the N., wholly within the N. Riding, a line of heights known as the Cleveland Hills, forming a spur of the N. Yorkshire Moors, ranges from 1000 to nearly 1500 ft., and overlooks rather abruptly the lowest part of the Tees valley. The line of greatest elevation approaches the central plain, and swings sharply S. in the Hambleton Hills to overlook it, while to the S. of the line long deep dales carry tributary streams S. to the river Derwent, thus draining to the Ouse. Eastward the N. Yorkshire moors give immediately upon the coast. Their higher parts consist of open moorland. The remarkable upper valley of the Derwent (q.v.) marks off the N. Yorkshire moors from the Yorkshire wolds of the E. Riding, the river forming the boundary between the N. and E. Ridings. The wolds superficially resemble the moors, inasmuch as they abut directly on the coast E., run thence W., and swing S. to overlook the central plain. At the S. extremity they sink to the shore of the Humber. Their greatest elevation is found near the W. angle (Howardian Hills), but hardly reaches 800 ft. Eastward they encircle a low-lying fertile tract bounded S. by the Humber and E. by the North Sea. The name of Holderness is broadly applied to this low tract, though the wapentake of that name includes properly only the E. of it.
The diverse character of the coast may be inferred from the foregoing description. In the north, S. of Teesmouth, it is low for a short distance, then the E. abutments of the Cleveland Hills form fine cliffs, reaching at Boulby the highest elevation of sea cliffs in England (666 ft.). Picturesque valleys bearing short streams break the line, notably that of the Esk, reaching the sea at Whitby. The trend of the coast is at first S.E. and then S. South of Scarborough it sinks with the near approach of the Derwent valley, begins to rise again round the shallow sweep of Filey Bay, and then springs seaward in the fine promontory of Flamborough Head (see Bridlington). South of this, after the sharp incurve of Bridlington Bay, the low coast-line of Holderness succeeds, long and unbroken, as far as Spurn Point, which encloses the mouth of the Humber. Encroachments of the sea are frequent, but much land has been reclaimed.
There are several watering-places on the coast in high favour with visitors from the manufacturing districts. The principal, from N. to S. are Redcar, Saltburn-by-the-Sea, Whitby, Robin Hood's Bay, Scarborough (the largest of all), Filey, Bridlington and Hornsea. There are numerous mineral springs in Yorkshire, the principal being those at Harrogate. There is also a spa at Scarborough, and others are Askern near Doncaster, Boston Spa near Harrogate, Croft on the Tees near Darlington, Hovingham, near Malton, Guisbrough in Cleveland and Slaithwaite near Huddersfield. The springs are chiefly sulphurous and chalybeate.
By far the greater part of Yorkshire is within the drainage basin of the Ouse, which with the Trent makes the estuary of the Humber (q.v.). It is formed in the central plain by the junction of the Ure and Swale, both rising in the Pennine hills; but whereas the Swale drains the N. of the plain, the Ure, traversing Wensleydale, is enclosed by the hills over the greater part of its course. The Ouse also receives from the Pennine district the Nidd, traversing Nidderdale, the Wharfe, the Aire, with its tributary the Calder, and the Don. The Aire rises in the fine gorge of Malham Cove, from the subterranean waterways in the limestone. None of these tributaries is naturally navigable, but the Aire, Calder and Don are in part canalized. From the E. the principal tributary is the Derwent, which on entering the central plain follows a course roughly parallel to that of the Ouse, and joins it in its lower part, between Selby and Howden. The Foss joins the Ouse at York. In the W. the county contains the headwaters of several streams of the W. slope of the Pennines, draining to the Irish Sea; of these the principal is the Ribble. In the N. the Tees forms most of the boundary with the county of Durham, but receives no large tributary from Yorkshire. In the S. of the W. Riding a few streams drain to the Trent. In Holderness, debarred by the wolds from the general drainage system of the county, the chief stream is the Hull. The only sheets of water of any size are Semmer Water, in a branch of Wensleydale; Malham Tarn, near the head of Airedale, the effluent of which quickly disappears into an underground channel; and Hornsea Mere, near the flat seacoast at Hornsea.
Geology.—The great variety in the scenery of Yorkshire is but a reflection of the marked differences in the geological substructure. The stratification is for the most part regular, but owing to a great line of dislocation nearly coincident with the W. boundary of the county the rocks dip towards the E., while the strike of the strata is from N. to S. The bold and picturesque scenery of the western hills and dales is due to the effects of denudation among the harder rocks, which here come to the surface. The strata in the Pennines consist of (1) older Palaeozoic rocks, viz. a faulted inlier of Silurian and Ordovician at Horton in Ribblesdale, and a small patch of Silurian at Sedbergh with inliers of Coniston limestone; (2) the Carboniferous or Mountain Limestone, which has been subjected to great dislocations, the more important of which are known as the N. and S. Craven faults; (3) the Yoredale series, consisting of shales, flagstones, limestones and thin scams of coal; and (4) the Millstone Grit, forming part of the hilly moorlands, and capping many of the loftier eminences. In the W. Riding the Pennine range forms part of the elevated country of Craven and Dent. The scenery in the W. of the N. Riding is somewhat similar to that in Craven, except that the lower hills are of sharper outline owing to the perpendicular limestone scars. To the intermingling of the limestone with the softer rocks are due the numerous “forces” or waterfalls, which are one of the special features of the scenery of this district. The action of water on the limestone rocks assisted by joints and faults has given rise to extensive caverns, of which the best examples are those of Clapham and Ingleton in the W. Riding, as well as to subterranean watercourses. At Brimham, Plumpton and elsewhere there are fantastic masses of rocks due to irregular weathering of the Millstone Grit. The Pennine region is bounded on the S.E. by the Coal Measures, forming the N. of the Derbyshire, Nottingham and Yorkshire coal-field, which in Yorkshire extends from Sheffield N. to Leeds. The noted fire clays of the Leeds district are obtained from this formation. To the E. the Coal Measures dip beneath the unconformable Permian beds, with magnesian limestone and marl slate, of which a narrow band crops up from Masham southwards. The Permian strata are overlain to the E. by the Trias or New Red Sandstone, scarcely ever exposed, but having been partly worn away is covered with Glacial deposits of clay and gravel, forming the low-lying Vale of York, extending from the Tees S. to Tadcaster and E. beyond York to Market Weighton. Near Middlesbrough red rock with gypsum and rock-salt (100 ft.) have been proved. Farther E. the Triassic beds are overlain by Lias and Oolite, Rhaetic beds have been recorded from near Northallerton. The Lias crops to the surface in a curve extending from Redcar to the Humber. In the Middle Lias there is a seam of valuable iron ore, the source of the prosperity of the Cleveland region. The moorlands extending from Scarborough and Whitby are formed of Liassic strata, topped with the estuarine beds of Lower Oolite, rising gradually to the N.E. and attaining at Burton Head a height of 1489 ft., the greatest elevation of the Oolite formation in England. In the Oolitic “Dogger” series the magnetic iron ore of Rosedale is worked. Corallian rocks form the scarp of the Hambleton hills and extend E. on the N. of the Vale of Pickering through Hackness to the coast, and S.W. of the vale to the neighbourhood of Malton. The Vale of Pickering is underlaid by faulted Kimeridge Clay. Lias and Oolites fringe the E. of the Vale of York to Ferriby on the Humber. In the S.E. of the county, Cretaceous rocks cover up the older strata, N. to the Vale of Pickering and W. to the Vale of York. The Chalk forms the Yorkshire wolds and the country S. through, Driffield, Beverley and Holderness.
The Yorkshire coast between Redcar and Flamborough presents a continuous series of magnificent exposures of the strata from the Lower Lias to the Chalk. The Upper Lias fossils and jet of Whitby and alum shale of Saltwick are well known. At Scarborough the Corallian, Oxford Clay, Kellaways Rock, Cornbrash and Upper Estuarine beds are well exposed in the cliffs. In Filey Bay the Kimeridge Clay appears on the coast, but it is covered farther S. by the historic beds of Speeton, representing the marine equivalents of Portland, Purbeck, Wealden, and Lower Greensand of S. England. Over the Speeton beds lies the Red Chalk, the Yorkshire equivalent of the Upper Greensand and Gault. The evidences of glacial action are of unusual interest and variety; the great thickness of boulder clay on the coast is familiar to all, but inland also great deposits of glacial clay, sand and gravel obscure the older geology. The Vale of Pickering and many of the smaller northern valleys were at one period the sites of Glacial lakes, and the “warp” which covers much of the Vale of York is a fluvio-glacial deposit. The Cleveland Dike is an intrusive igneous dike of augite-andesite of Tertiary age which can be traced across the country in a N.W. direction from the neighbourhood of Fylingdales Moor.
Minerals.—The coal-field in the W. Riding is one of the chief sources of mineral wealth in Yorkshire, the most valuable seams being the Silkstone, which is bituminous and of the highest reputation as a house coal, and the Barnsley Thick Coal, the great seam of the Yorkshire coal-field, which is of special value, on account of its semi-anthracitic quality, for use in iron-smelting and in engine furnaces. Associated with the Upper Coal Measures there is a valuable iron ore, occurring in the form of nodules. Large quantities of fireclay are also raised, as well as of gannister and oil-shale. Middlesbrough is the most important centre of pig-iron manufacture in the kingdom. Lead ore is obtained in the Yoredale beds of the Pennine range in Wharfedale, Airedale, Nidderdale, Swaledale, Arkendale and Wensleydale. Slates and flagstones are quarried in the Yoredale rocks. In the Millstone Grit there are several beds of good building stone, but that most largely quarried is the magnesian limestone of the Permian series, which, however, has of somewhat variable quality.
Agriculture.—Nearly nine-tenths of the E. Riding is under cultivation, but of the N. and W. Ridings only from three fifths to seven-tenths—proportions explained by the different physical conditions. The till or boulder clay of Holderness is the richest soil in Yorkshire, and the chalk wolds, by careful cultivation, form one of the best soils for grain crops. The central plain bears all kinds of crops excellently. Wheat is grown in the E. and W. Ridings, but oats are the principal grain crop in these ridings, and barley exceeds wheat in all three. The bulk of the acreage under green crops is devoted to turnips and swedes. A little flax is grown, and liquorice is cultivated near Pontefract. The proportion of hill pasture is greatest in the N. Riding and least in the E., and the N. and W. Ridings are among the principal sheep-farming districts in England. Cattle, for the rearing of which the W. Riding is most noted, do not receive great attention. The Teeswater breed, however, is increasing in Yorkshire, and in Holderness there is a short-horned breed, chiefly valuable for its milking qualities. Cheese-making is largely carried on in some districts. Of sheep perhaps the most common breeds are the Leicester, Lincoln and South Down, and crosses between the Cheviot and the Leicester. Large numbers of pigs are kept at the dairy farms and fed mainly on whey. The small breed is that chiefly in favour. Yorkshire bacon is famous. Draught horses are generally of a somewhat mixed breed, but the county is famed for its hunters and carriage and saddle horses. The breed of Cleveland bays is much used for carriages.
Manufactures.—The industrial district of south Yorkshire occupies the S. of the W. Riding, and may be taken as marked off approximately by the watershed from the similar district in S. Lancashire. The W. Riding is now the chief seat of the woollen manufacture of the United Kingdom, and has almost a monopoly in the production of worsted cloths. The early development of the industry was in part due to the abundance of water-power, while later the presence of coal helped to maintain it on the introduction of steam-power. In this industry nearly all the most important towns are engaged, while the names of several of the largest are connected with various specialities. Thus, while almost every variety of woollen and worsted cloth is produced at Leeds, Bradford is especially concerned with yarns and mixed worsted goods, Dewsbury and Batley with shoddy, Huddersfield with fancy goods and Halifax with carpets. The cotton industry of Lancashire has also penetrated to the neighbourhood of Halifax. Among the characteristics of the industrial population, the love of music should be mentioned. Choral societies are numerous, and the work of some of those in the larger towns, such as Sheffield, Leeds and Bradford, has attracted wide notice. Next to the woollen industry comes the manufacture of iron and steel machinery and implements of every variety, which is common to most of the larger centres in the district. Sheffield is especially famous for iron-work, fine metal-work and cutlery. The development of the iron ore deposits of Cleveland dates only from the middle of the 19th century. About two and a half million tons of pig-iron are produced in this district annually, and there are considerable attendant industries, such as the production of steel, and shipbuilding. The chemical manufacture is important both here and in the W. Riding, where also a great variety of minor industries have sprung up. Such are leather working (at Leeds), the manufacture of clothing, printing and bleaching, and paper-making. Besides coal and iron ore, great quantities of clay, limestone and sandstone are raised. Excellent building-stone is obtained at several places in the W. Riding. The sea-fisheries are of some importance, chiefly at Hull, Scarborough, Whitby and Filey.
Communications.—N. and E. of Leeds communications are provided almost wholly by the North-Eastern railway, the main line of which runs from Leeds and from Doncaster N. by York, Thirsk and Northallerton. The main junction with the Great Northern line is effected immediately N. of Doncaster, at which town are the Great Northern works. This company serves the chief centres of the W. Riding, as do also the Midland Great Central, London & North-Western, Lancashire & Yorkshire and North Eastern companies, the trains working over a close network of lines, while the system of running-powers held by one or more companies over the lines of another assists intercommunication. The Midland main line to Carlisle runs by Leeds, Skipton and Settle through the hilly country of the W. The Hull & Barnsley line runs from Hull to Barnsley. A complete system of canals links the centres of the southern W. Riding with the sea both E. and W., the Aire & Calder Navigation communicating with the Ouse at Goole, the Huddersfield canal runs S.W. into Lancashire, crossing the watershed by the long Stanedge tunnel, and other canals are the Leeds & Liverpool, Calder & Nebble Navigation, and the Sheffield & South Yorkshire Navigation, which gives access from Sheffield to the Trent. The Aire & Calder Navigation, the most important of these canals, which has branches from Castleford to Leeds and Wakefield, and other branches to Barnsley, Bradford and Selby, has a total length of 85 m., and has been much improved since its construction. It was projected by John Rennie and opened in 1826, with a depth of 7 ft. and locks measuring 72 by 18 ft. Its depth now varies from 8 ft. 6 in. to 10 ft., and over a distance of 28 m., between Goole and the collieries, the locks have been enlarged to 460 by 25 ft., and the width of the canal to 90 ft. The chief ports are Middlesbrough on the Tees, Hull on the Humber, and Goole on the Ouse.
Population and Administration.—The area of the ancient county is 3,882,328 acres. Its population in 1891 was 3,208,521, and in 1901, 3,584,762. The population increased over fivefold between 1801 and 1901; the increase in the W. Riding exceeding sevenfold. The manner in which the population is distributed may be inferred from the following statement of the parliamentary divisions, parliamentary, county and municipal boroughs, and urban districts in the three ridings. It should be premised that each of the three ridings is a distinct administrative county; though there is one high sheriff for the whole county. The city of York (pop. 77,914) is situated partly in each of the three ridings.
The West Riding has an area of 1,771,562 acres, with a population in 1891 of 2,445,033, and in 1901 of 2,750,493. Of this area the S. industrial district, considered in the broadest application of the term as extending between Sheffield and Skipton, Sheffield and Doncaster, and Leeds and the county boundary, covers rather less than one-half. The area thus defined includes the parliamentary divisions of Barnsley, Colne Valley, Elland, Hallamshire. Hoimfirth, Keighley, Morley, Normanton, Pudsey, Rotherham, Shipley, Sowerby, Spen Valley. It also includes parts of the divisions of Barkston Ash, Doncaster, Osgoldcross, Otley and Skipton (a small part). The remaining parts of these last divisions, with that of Ripon, cover the rest of the riding. Each division returns one member. The following are parliamentary boroughs: Bradford, returning 3 members, Dewsbury 1, Halifax 1, Huddersfield 1, Leeds 5, Pontefract 1, Sheffield 5, Wakefield 1. All these are within the industrial district. Within this district are the following municipal boroughs (pops. in 1901): Barnsley (41,086), Batley (30,321), Bradford, city and county borough (279,767), Brighouse (21,735), Dewsbury (28,060), Doncaster (28,932), Halifax, county borough (104,936), Huddersfield, county borough (95,047), Keighley (41,564), Leeds, city and county borough (428,968), Morley (23,636), Ossett (12,903), Pontefract (13,427), Pudsey (14,907), Rotherham (54,349), Sheffield, city and county borough (409,070), Todmorden (partly in Lancashire, 25,418), Wakefield, city (41,413). The only municipal boroughs elsewhere in the riding are Harrogate (28,423) and Ripon (cathedral city, 8230). Within the industrial region there are 113 other urban districts, those with populations exceeding 10,000 being Bingley (18,449), Castleford (17,386), Cleckheaton (12,524), Elland (10,412), Featherstone (12,093), Handsworth (13,404), Hoyland Nether (12,464), Liversedge (13,980), Mexborough (10,430), Mirfield (11,341), Normanton (12,352), Rawmarsh (14.587), Rothwell (11,702), Saddleworth (12,320), Shipley (25,573), Skipton (11,986), Sowerby Bridge (11,477), Stanley (12,290), Swinton (12,127), Thornhill (10,290), Wombwell (13,252), Worsborough (10,336). The only urban districts in the West Riding not falling within the industrial region are—Goole (16,576), Ilkley (7455), Knaresborough (4979) and Selby (7786).The North Riding has an area of 1,362,378 acres, with a population in 1891 of 359,547 and in 1901 of 377,338. It comprises the parliamentary divisions of Richmond, Cleveland, Whitby, and Thirsk and Malton, each returning one member, and the parliamentary boroughs of Middlesbrough (one member), Scarborough (one member), and parts of Stockton-on-Tees and York. The municipal boroughs are Middlesbrough, county borough (91,302), Richmond (3837), Scarborough (38,161) and Thornaby-on-Tees (16,054). The urban districts are Eston (11,199), Guisborough (5645), Hinderwell (1937), Kirklington-cum-Upsland (255), Loftus (6508), Malton (4758), Masham (1955), Northallerton (4009), Ormesby (9482), Pickering (3491), Redcar (7695), Saltburn-by-the-Sea (2578), Scalby (1350), Skelton and Brotton (13,240), South
Bank in Normanby (9645), Whitby (11,755). Of these, all except Kirklington, Malton, Masham, Northallerton, Pickering and Whitby are in the populous Cleveland district. Besides Pickering, there lie at the S. of the Cleveland hills the small towns of Kirkby Moorside (1550) and Helmsley (1363). South of the last-named is the village of Ampleforth, with its large Roman Catholic college, founded in 1802, and accommodating, in fine modern buildings, about 120 students.
The East Riding has an area of 750,039 acres, with a population in 1891 of 341,560 and in 1901 of 385,007. It comprises the parliamentary divisions of Buckrose, Howdenshire and Holderness, each returning one member, and contains the parliamentary borough of Hull, returning three members, and part of that of York. The municipal boroughs are Beverley (13,183), Bridlington (12,482), Hedon (1010), and Hull, or Kingston-upon-Hull, a city and county of a city and county borough (240,250). The urban districts are Cottingham, near Hull (3751), Filey (3003), Driffield (5766), Hessle, near Hull (3754), Hornsea (2381), Norton, near Malton (3842), Pocklington (2463) and Withernsea (1426).
The West Riding comprises 9 wapentakes and the liberty of Ripon. It has one court of quarter sessions and is divided into 26 petty sessional divisions. The boroughs of Bradford, Doncaster, Leeds, Pontefract, Rotherham and Sheffield, and the liberty of Ripon, have separate courts of quarter sessions and commissions of the peace, and Barnsley, Batley, Brighouse, Dewsbury, Halifax, Harrogate, Huddersfield, Keighley, Morley, Ossett and Wakefield have commissions of the peace. The liberty and borough of Ripon are rated separately from the West Riding for the purposes of the county rate.
The North Riding comprises 11 wapentakes, and the liberties of E. and W. Langbaurgh and of Whitby Strand. It has one court of quarter sessions and is divided into 19 petty sessional divisions. The boroughs of Richmond and Scarborough have separate courts of quarter sessions and commissions of the peace, and the borough of Middlesbrough has a commission of the peace. The East Riding comprises 6 wapentakes and has one court of quarter sessions, and is divided into 12 petty sessional divisions, while Hull has a separate court of quarter sessions and commission of the peace, and Beverley has a separate commission of the peace. The city of York has a separate court of quarter sessions and commission of the peace. Yorkshire is in the N.E. circuit. The total number of civil parishes is 1586. The county contains 1178 ecclesiastical parishes and districts wholly or in part. It is divided between the dioceses of York. Ripon and Wakefield, with small parts in those of Manchester, Southwell, Durham and Lincoln. York is the seat of the northern archdiocese.
History.—The kingdom of Deira (q.v.), which was afterwards to include the whole of the modern Yorkshire, is first known to us in the 6th century, an Anglian tribe having seized the promontory at the mouth of the Humber, named by the invaders Holderness, followed by the gradual subjugation of the whole district now known as the East Riding. The wolds between Weighton and Flamborough Head were then mere sheep-walks, and the earliest settlements were chiefly confined to the rich valley of the lower Derwent, but the district around Weighton became the Deiran sacred ground, and Goodmanham is said to mark the site of a temple. The area computed in the modern West Riding constituted the British kingdom of Elmet, and at this date presented a desolate and unbroken tract of moorland in the N., in the central parts about Leeds stretched a forest region where the last wolf seen in Yorkshire is said to have been slain by John of Gaunt, while in the S. the forest and fen of Hatfield Chase presented a barrier to invasion broken only by the line of Watling Street, which crossed the Don at Doncaster, the Aire at Castleford and the Wharfe at Tadcaster. The N. continuation of the road from York through Catterick to the Tees opened the way to the fertile plain in the heart of the modern North Riding, the S.E. of which offered an unbroken forest area, later known as the forest of Galtres, which in the middle ages stretched from York N. to Easingwold and Craike and E. to Castle Howard, and as late as the 16th century lay a waste and unfrequented region abounding only in deer. Ella, the first king of Deira, extended his territory N. to the Wear, and his son Edwin completed the conquest of the district which was to become Yorkshire by the subjugation of Elmet, prompted thereto by vengeance on its king, Cerdic, for the murder of his uncle Hereric. Traces of the “burhs” by which Edwin secured his conquests are perhaps visible in the group of earthworks at Barwick and on the site of Cambodunum, but the district long remained scantily populated, and as late as the 17th century deer were said to be as plentiful in Hatfield Chase as “sheep upon a hill,” for Prince Henry in 1609 was asserted to have killed 500 in one day's hunting. The defeat of Edwin at Hatfield in 633 was followed by a succession of struggles between Mercia and Northumbria for the supremacy over Deira, during which the boundaries underwent constant changes. After the Danish conquest of Deira, Guthrum in 875 portioned the district among his followers, under whose lordship the English population were for the most part allowed to retain their lands. Cleveland came under Scandinavian influence, and the division into tithings probably originated about this date, the boundaries being arranged to meet at York, which, as the administrative and commercial centre of the district, rapidly increased in importance, and it has been estimated that in A.D. 1000 it had a population of over 30,000. At the battle of Stamford Bridge in 1066 Harold Hardrada, who had seized York, and Earl Tosti were both defeated and slain by Harold of England. The merciless harrying with which the Conqueror punished resistance to his claims is proved by the reiterated entries of waste land in the Domesday Survey, and for many years all the towns between York and Durham lay uninhabited. In 1138 the forces of David of Scotland were defeated near Northallerton in the Battle of the Standard. In the barons' wars of the reign of Henry II. Thirsk and Malgeard Castles, which had been garrisoned against the king by Roger de Mowbray, were captured and demolished. In the harrying of the northern counties by the forces of Robert Bruce in 1318, Northallerton, Boroughbridge, Scarborough and Skipton were reduced to ashes. In 1322, at the battle of Boroughbridge, the rebel barons were defeated by the forces of Edward II. In 1399 Richard II. was murdered in Pontefract Castle. In 1405 Archbishop Scrope and Thomas Mowbray joined in the insurrection against Henry IV., and led the citizens of York to Skipton Moor, where, after a defeat by the earl of Westmorland, the leaders were beheaded under the walls of York. In 1408 the rebel forces of the earl of Northumberland were defeated by Sir Thomas Rokesby, high sheriff of Yorkshire, at Bramham Moor near Tadcaster. In 1453 a skirmish between the Percies and the Nevilles at Stamford Bridge was the opening event in the struggle between the houses of York and Lancaster, in 1460 the duke of York was defeated and slain at Wakefield, in 1461 the Lancastrians were defeated at Towton. The suppression of the monasteries roused deep resentment in Yorkshire, and the inhabitants flocked to join the Pilgrimage of Grace, Skipton Castle being the only place immediately N. of the Humber which remained loyal to the king. On the outbreak of the Civil War of the 17th century, opinion was divided in Yorkshire, the chief parliamentary families being the Fairfaxes and the Hothams, while the Puritan clothing-towns of the West Riding also sided with the parliament. Sir William Savile captured Leeds and Wakefield for the king in 1642, and in 1643 Newcastle, having defeated the Fairfaxes at Adwalton Moor, held all Yorkshire except Hull, which the Hothams, moved by jealousy of the Fairfaxes, had already designed to give up. In 1644, however, the Fairfaxes secured the East and West Ridings, while Cromwell's victory at Marston Moor was followed by the capture of York, and in the next year of Pontefract and Scarborough.
On the redistribution of estates after the Norman Conquest, Alan of Brittany, founder of Richmond Castle, received a vast fief which became the honour of Richmond; Ilbert de Laci was rewarded with lands which afterwards constituted the honour of Pontefract. Earl Harold's estate at Coningsburgh passed to William de Warenne, earl of Surrey, together with Sandal Castle, which on the expiration of the Warenne line in the 14th century was bestowed on Edmund Langley, duke of York. Other great Domesday landholders were William de Percy, founder of the abbey of Whitby; Robert de Bruce, ancestor of the royal line of Scotland, the head of whose fief in Cleveland was transferred in the 12th century from Danby Castle to Skelton; Roger de Bush owned a large tract in S. Yorkshire, of which Tickhill was the head; the archbishop of York enjoyed the great lordship of Sherburn, and Howdenshire was a liberty of the bishop of Durham. Among the great lordships of the middle ages for which Yorkshire was distinguished were: Topcliffe, the honour of the Percies; Thirsk, of the Mowbrays; Tanfield, of the Marmions; Skipton, of the Cliffords; Middleham, of the Fitz-Hughes and Nevilles; Helmsley, of the de Roos; Masham and Bolton, of the Scropes; Sheffield, of the Furnivalls and Talbots; Wakefield, of the duke of York. The Fairfaxes were settled in Yorkshire in the 13th century, and in the 16th century Denton became their chief seat.
The shire court for Yorkshire was held at York, but extensive privileges were enjoyed by the great landholders. In the 13th century Henry de Lacy, earl of Lincoln, claimed to hold the sheriff's tourn at Bradford and Leeds, his bailiff administered the wapentake of Stainclif in his court at Bacskalf and Slaidburn; and his steward judged cases of felony in his court at Almondbury. The archbishop of York held the sheriff's tourn at Otley, and had his own coroners at York, Hull, Beverley and Ripon. Eudo la Zouche held the sheriff's tourn at Bingley, and Thomas de Furnivall in Hallamshire. The bailiffs of Tickhill Castle also held tourns in place of the sheriff. The bishop of Durham had a court at Hoveden, and the king's bailiffs were excluded from executing their office in his estates of Howdenshire and Allertonshire. The abbot of St Mary's York had his own coroners in the wapentake of Ryedale, and the abbot of Bella Landa in Sutton. The prior of Bradenstoke held a court in his manor of Wales. The archbishop of York, Robert de Ros, and the abbot of St Mary's York judged felonies at their courts in Holderness. The liberty of Ripon (q.v.), city of Ripon, still constitutes a franchise of the archbishops of York.
In the 13th century the diocese of York included in this county the archdeaconry of York, comprising the deaneries of York, Pontefract, Doncaster and Craven; the archdeaconry of Cleveland, comprising the deaneries of Bulmer, Cleveland and Ryedale, the archdeaconry of East Riding, comprising the deaneries of Harthill (Hull), Buckrose, Dickering and Holderness; and the archdeaconry of Richmond, comprising the deaneries of Richmond, Catterick, Boroughbridge and Lonsdale. In 1541 the deaneries of Richmond were transferred to Henry VIII.'s new diocese of Chester. Ripon was created an episcopal see by act of parliament in 1836, and the deaneries of Craven and Pontefract were formed into the archdeaconry of Craven within its jurisdiction, together with the archdeaconry of Richmond. The archdeaconry of Sheffield was created in 1884 to include the deaneries of Sheffield, Rotherham, Ecclesfield and Wath. In 18S8 the area of the diocese of Ripon was reduced by the creation of the see of Wakefield, including the archdeaconry of Halifax with the deaneries of Birstall, Dewsbury, Halifax, Silkstone and Wakefield, and the archdeaconry and deanery of Huddersfield. The diocese of Ripon now includes in this county the archdeaconries of Craven with three deaneries, Richmond with three deaneries and Ripon with seven deaneries. The diocese of York includes the archdeaconries of York with six deaneries, Sheiffeld with four deaneries, East Riding with thirteen deaneries and Cleveland with nine deaneries.
The great woollen industry of Yorkshire originated soon after the Conquest, and the further development of this and other characteristic industries may be traced in the articles on the various industrial centres. The time of the American War marked the gradual absorption by Yorkshire of the clothing trade from the E. counties. Coal appears to have been used in Yorkshire by the Romans, and was dug at Leeds in the 13th century. The early fame of Sheffield as the centre of the cutlery and iron trade is demonstrated by the line in Chaucer, “a Sheffield whitel bore he in his hose.” In the 13th century a forge is mentioned at Rosedale, and the canons of Gisburn had four “fabricae” in blast in Glaisdale in Cleveland. In the 16th century limestone was dug in many parts of Elmet, and Huddlestone, Hesselwood and Tadcaster had famous quarries, Pontefract was famous for its liquorice, Aberford for its pins, Whitby for its jet. Alum was dug at Guisborough, Sandsend, Dunsley and Whitby in the 17th century, and a statute of 1659 forbade the importation of alum from abroad, in order to encourage its cultivation in this country. Bolton market was an important distributive centre for cotton materials in the 17th century, and in 1787 there were eleven cotton mills in the county.
Parliamentary Representation.—The county of York was represented by two knights in the parliament of 1295, and the boroughs of Beverley, Hedon, Malton, Pickering, Pontefract, Ripon, Scarborough, Thirsk, Tickhill, Yarm and York each by two burgesses. Northallerton acquired representation in 1298, Boroughbridge in 1300, Kingston-on-Hull and Ravensburgh in 1304. In most of the boroughs the privilege of representation was allowed to lapse, and from 1328 until 1547 only York, Scarborough and Kingston-on-Hull returned members. Hedon, Thirsk, Ripon and Beverley regained the franchise in the 16th century, and Boroughbridge, Knaresborough, Aldborough and Richmond also returned members. Pontefract was represented in 1623, New Malton and Northallerton in 1640. In 1826 two additional knights were returned for the shire of York, and 14 boroughs were represented. Under the Reform Act of 1832 the county returned 6 members in 3 divisions—2 for each riding; Aldborough, Boroughbridge and Hedon were disfranchised; Northallerton and Thirsk lost 1 member each; Bradford, Halifax, Leeds and Sheffield acquired representation by 2 members each, and Wakefield and Whitby by 1 member each. Under the act of 1858 the representation of the West Riding division was increased to 6 members in 3 divisions; Dewsbury and Middlesbrough were enfranchised, returning 1 member each; Leeds now returned 3 members; Knaresborough, Malton, Richmond and Ripon lost 1 member each. Beverley was disfranchised in 1870. (For arrangements under the act of 1885 see § Administration.)
Antiquities.—Of ancient castles Yorkshire retains many interesting examples. The fine ruins at Knaresborough, Pickering, Pontefract, Richmond, Scarborough and Skipton are described under their respective headings. Barden Tower, picturesquely situated in upper Wharfedale, was built by Henry de Clifford (d. 1523), called the “shepherd lord” from the story that he was brought up as a shepherd. He was a student of astronomy and astrology. Bolton Castle, which rises majestically above Wensleydale, was pronounced by Leland “the fairest in Richmondshire.” It is a square building with towers at the corners, erected in the reign of Richard II. by Richard Scrope, chancellor of England. It was occupied by Queen Mary while under the charge of Lord Scrope, was besieged during the civil wars, and rendered untenable in 1647. Of Bowes Castle, in the North Riding near Barnard Castle, there remains only the square keep, supposed to have been built by Alan Niger, 1st earl of Richmond, in the 12th century, but the site was occupied by the Romans. Cawood Castle, on the Ouse near Selby, retains its gateway tower erected in the reign of Henry VI. The castle, said to have been founded by Æthelstan in 620, was the palace of the archbishops of York, and Wolsey resided in it. Conisborough Castle stands by the Don between Rotherham and Doncaster. Its origin is uncertain, but dates probably from Saxon times. The keep and portions of the walls remain, and the ruin possesses additional interest from its treatment in Scott's Ivanhoe. The ruins of Danby Castle, which is supposed to have been built shortly after the Conquest by Robert de Bruce or Brus, are of various dates. Harewood Castle in lower Wharfedale was founded soon after the Conquest, but contains no portions earlier than the reign of Edward III. The keep of Helmsley Castle was built late in the 12th century probably by Robert de Ros, surnamed Fursan, the earthworks are apparently of much earlier date. There are picturesque remains of the quadrangular fortress of Middleham in Wensleydale, built in the 12th century by Robert FitzRanulph, afterwards possessed by the Nevilles, and rendered untenable by order of parliament in 1647. Mulgrave Castle, near the modern residence of the same name in the Whitby district, is said to have been founded two centuries before the Conquest by a Saxon giant named Wade or Wadda. Parts are clearly Norman, but some of the masonry suggests an earlier date. The castle was dismantled after the civil wars. There are slight remain, of the 15th century, of Ravensworth Castle, near Richmond. This was probably an early foundation of the family of Fitz Hugh. Sheriff Hutton Castle, between York and Malton, was the foundation of Bertram de Bulmer in the reign of Stephen, the remains are of the early part of the 15th century, when the property passed to the Nevilles. Spofforth Castle, near Harrogate, was erected by Henry de Percy in 1309. Its ruins range from the period of foundation to the 15th century. Of Tickhill Castle, near Doncaster, built or enlarged by Roger de Bush in the 11th century, there are foundations of the keep and fragments of the walls. Of Whorlton Castle in Cleveland, the Perpendicular gatehouse is very fine. One side remains of the great quadrangular fortress of Wressell, E. of Selby, built by Thomas Percy, earl of Worcester, in the reign of Richard II. Some of the mansions in the county incorporate remains of ancient strongholds, such as those at Gilling, under the Hambleton Hills in the North Riding, Ripley near Harrogate, and Skelton in Cleveland. Medieval mansions are numerous, a noteworthy example being the Elizabethan hall of Burton Agnes, in the N. of Holderness.
In ecclesiastical architecture Yorkshire is extraordinarily rich. At the time of the Dissolution there were 28 abbeys, 26 priories. 23 nunneries, 30 friaries, 13 cells, 4 commanderies of Knights Hospitallers and 4 preceptories of Knights Templars. The principal monastic ruins are described under separate headings and elsewhere. These are Bolton Abbey (properly Priory), a foundation of Augustinian canons; Fountains Abbey, a Cistercian foundation, the finest and most complete of the ruined abbeys in England; the Cistercian abbey of Kirkstall near Leeds (q.v.); the Cistercian abbey of Rievaulx, and the Benedictine abbey of St Mary, at York. For the plans and buildings of Fountains, Kirkstall and St Mary's, York, see Abbey. Separate reference is also made to the ruins of Jervaulx (Cistercian) and Coverham (Premonstratensian) in Wensleydale, and to the remains at Bridlington, Guisborough, Malton, Whitby, Easby near Richmond, Kirkham near Malton, Monk Bretton near Barnsley, and Mount Grace near Northallerton. There are fine though scanty remains of Byland Abbey, of Early English date, between Thirsk and Malton; the abbey was founded for Cistercian monks in the 12th century, and was previously established at Old Byland near Rievaulx. There was a house of Premonstratensians at Egglestone above the Tees near Barnard Castle. Other ruins are the Cistercian foundations of the 12th century at Meaux in Holderness, Roche, E. of Rotherham, and Sawley in Ribblesdale, the Benedictine nunneries of Marrick in upper Swaledale, and Rosedale under the high moors of the N.E., and the Gilbertine house of Watton in Holderness, of the 12th century, converted into a dwelling.
Descriptions are given in the articles on the respective cities and towns of the cathedral or minster at York, and of the numerous churches in that city, of the cathedral churches at Ripon and Wakefield, of the minster and the church of St Mary at Beverley, and of the fine parish churches at Bradford, Bridlington (the old priory church), Hedon, Hull, Rotherham, Selby (abbey church), Sheffield and Thirsk. In Holderness are the splendid churches of Howden and Patrington, both in the main Decorated, and the fine late Norman building at Kirkburn. A very perfect though small example of a Norman church is seen at Birkin on the Aire below Pontefract. At Nun Monkton near York is a beautiful Early English church, formerly belonging to a Benedictine nunnery. Goodmanham in the S. Wolds is the scene, in all probability, of the conversion by Paulinus of Edwin of Northumbria in 625, who was afterwards baptized at York. At Kirkdale near Kirkby Moorside in the N. Riding is a singular example of an inscribed sundial of pre-Conquest date. At Lastingham in the same district is a very fine and early Norman crypt.
See Victoria County History, Yorkshire; T. Allen, History of the County of York (3 vols., London, 1828—31); T. Baines, Yorkshire Past and Present, including an account of the woollen trade of Yorkshire by E. Baines (2 vols., London, 1871—77); John Burton, Monasticon Eboracense (London, 1758—59); W. Smith, Old Yorkshire (London, 1881); G. Frank, Ryedale and North Yorkshire Antiquities (York, 1888); G. R. Park, Parliamentary Representation of Yorkshire (Hull, 1886); A.D.H. Leadman, Proelia Eboracensia, Battles fought in Yorkshire (London, 1891); T.D. Whitaker, History of Richmondshire (London, 1823), History of Craven (London, 1878), History of Leeds and Elmet (2 vols., Leeds, 1816); J. Wainwright, Yorkshire, Wapentake of Strafford and Tickhill, vol. i. (Sheffield, 1826); W. Grainge, Castles and Abbeys of Yorkshire (York, 1855); J. Hunter, South Yorkshire (2 vols., London, 1828-31); J.J. Sheahan and T. Whellan, History of the City of York, the Ainsty Wapentake, and the East Riding of Yorkshire (3 vols., Beverley, 1855—57); T. Langdale, Topographical Dictionary of Yorkshire (Northallerton, 1809); G. H. de S. N. Plantagenet Harrison, History of Yorkshire (London, 1879, &c.); see also publications of the Yorkshire Archaeological and Topographical Society.