Open main menu

Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 42.djvu/249

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

her and her father, whom she completely controlled, playing at chess, which they had learned from the Danes (Gaimar, ll. 3605-3725). Between 965 and 908 his signature as 'Ordgar dux' occurs in many charters Kemble, Codex Dipl. Nos. 518, 1270, &c.) according to the 'Anglo-Saxon Chronicle,' Ordgar founded the monastery of Tavistock in 961, but under the year 997 it is called Ordulf's minster, and, according to the 'Register of Tavistock' (Mon. Angl. ii. 494), it was founded by Ordulf, Ordgar's son. The 'Register' says it was large enough to hold a thousand persons; that it was begun in the reign of Eadgar, and finished in 981. Ordgar had another son, Edulf, who was of gigantic strength and stature (Gesta Pontiff. pp. 202-3). Ordgar died in 971, and, according to William of Malmesbury, was buried with his son Edulf at Tavistock. Florence of Worcester (s. a.) says he was buried at Exeter (Anglo-Saxon Chron.; Flor. Wig. Chron. loc. cit.; Will. Malm. Gesta Pontificum, ed. Hamilton; Gaimar, ed. Hardy and Martin).

A second Ordgar or Orgar (fl. 1066), one of the sheriffs of Edward the Confessor, held lands in Cambridgeshire, at Chippenham and Isleham. He appears to have lost the sheriffdom under Harold, and to have commended himself to Esegar the Staller (Freeman, Norman Conquest, v. 742). He is possibly identical with the nobleman Orgar who took refuge with Hereward in the Isle of Ely (Liber Eliensis, p. 230), where Alwinus, son of Orgar, was then a monk (Gesta Herewardi, p. 391; Domesday Book, i. 197a col. 2, 199a col. 2; Hamilton, Inquis. Eliensis, pp. 2, 8; Liber Eliensis, ed. D. J. Stewart (Anglia Christiana); and Gesta Herewardi in Gaimar, ed. Hardy and Martin).

A third Ordgar or Orgar (d. 1097 ?), English noble, challenged Edgar Atheling [q.v.] to single combat for treason against William II. Edgar's champion was Godwine of Winchester, an English knight. When worsted in the fight, Ordgar treacherously drew a knife he had concealed in his boot against the rule of trial by battle, but Godwine snatched the knife from him, and Ordgar died of his wounds, after confessing the falsehood of the accusation he had brought. It is possible that Ordgar is identical with the king's thegn of that name, who in 1086 held two hides in Oxfordshire (Domesday Book, i. 1616, col. 1) which had been the property of one Oodwine, and perhaps also with an Ordgar who had lost a hide in Somerset (ib. p. 93; Fordun, ed. Skene, v. 22, 23; Freeman, William Rufus, ii. 116-17, and 615-17).

[Authorities as cited.]

M. B.

ORDISH, ROWLAND MASON (1824–1886), engineer, son of John Ordish, land agent and surveyor, was born on 11 April 1824, at Melbourne, near Derby. Beyond the opportunity which he enjoyed in his fathers office of seeing building operations in progress, he seems to have had no professional training. Coming to London in 1847, he entered the office of Mr. R. E. Brounger, who employed him in making surveys for a railway in Denmark. He was afterwards engaged by Mr. (afterwards Sir) Charles Fox the Thames near Windsor. When Messrs. Fox & Henderson took the contract for the ironwork of the 1851 exhibition building, Ordish made the greater part of the working drawings; and he subsequently went to the London works, Smethwick, near Birmingham, to take part in the designing of the roof over the Birmingham railway station, then in course of construction by Fox & Henderson. He was afterwards engaged on the re-erection of the Great Exhibition building at Sydenham. According to the specification of one of his patents, he was at Copenhagen in April 1855, probably upon business connected with the Danish railway. From January 1856 to March 1858 he was chief draughtsman in the works department of the admiralty at Somerset House. He resigned this appointment to start in business on his own account, and for many years his office was at No. 18 Great George Street, Westminster, where for a considerable time he was in partnership with Mr. W. H. Le Feuvre. In April 1858 he took out a patent (No. 771) for an improvement in suspension bridges, in which the roadway consisted of a rigid girder suspended at several points by inclined straight cliains, which carried the whole of the load and the weight of the bridge. This mode of construction is now well known as Ordish's 'straight chain suspension' system. He designed a bridge upon this principle in 1862, with an opening of 821 feet, for crossing the Thames below London Bridge, but it was not until 1868 that the idea was carried out in actual practice by the construction of the Franz-Josef Bridge over the Moldau at Prague. This structure is described in the 'Mechanics' Magazine,' April 1866, p. 264; in the 'Engineer,' November 1868, pp. 343, 80; in W. Humberts 'Bridges,' 3rd edit. p. 258; and in Matheson's 'Works in Iron,' p. 81. The Albert Bridge over the Thames at Chelsea, opened in September 1873, was also constructed on the same principle. It has a central opening of 453 feet. A description