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CONGLETON—CONGLOMERATE

of Ingulphus, abbot of Crowland, who wrote in the reign of William the Conqueror, the bishoprics in England had been, for many years prior to the Norman Conquest, royal donatives conferred by delivery of the ring and of the pastoral staff. Disputes arose for the first time between the crown of England and the see of Rome in the reign of William Rufus, the pope claiming to dispose of the English bishoprics; and ultimately King John, by his charter Ut liberae sunt electiones totius Angliae (1214), granted that the bishops should be elected freely by the deans and chapters of the cathedral churches, provided the royal permission was first asked, and the royal assent was required after the election. This arrangement was confirmed by subsequent statutes passed in the reigns of Edward I. and Edward III. respectively, and the practice was ultimately settled in its present form by the statute Payment of Annates, &c., 1534. According to the provisions of this statute, upon the avoidance of any episcopal see, the dean and chapter of the cathedral church are to certify the vacancy of the see to the crown, and to pray that they may be allowed to proceed to a new election. The crown thereupon grants to the dean and chapter its licence under the great seal to elect a new bishop, accompanied by a letter missive containing the name of the person whom the dean and chapter are to elect. The dean and chapter are thereupon bound to elect the person so named by the crown within twelve days, in default of which the crown is empowered by the statute to nominate by letters patent such person as it may think fit, to the vacant bishopric. Upon the return of the election of the new bishop, the metropolitan is required by the crown to examine and to confirm the election, and the metropolitan’s confirmation gives to the election its canonical completeness. In case of a vacancy in a metropolitical see, an episcopal commission is appointed by the guardians of the spiritualities of the vacant see to confirm the election of the new metropolitan. At one time deans of the “old foundation”—in contradistinction to those of the “new foundation,” founded by Henry VIII. out of the spoils of the dissolved monasteries—were elected by the chapter on a congé d’élire from the crown, but now all deans are installed by letters-patent from the crown. (See Confirmation of Bishops.)


CONGLETON, HENRY BROOKE PARNELL, 1st Baron (1776–1842), was the second son of Sir John Parnell, bart. (1744–1801), chancellor of the Irish exchequer, and was educated at Eton and Cambridge. In 1801 he succeeded to the family estates in Queen’s county, and married a daughter of the earl of Portarlington; and in 1802, by his father-in-law’s interest, he was returned for Portarlington to parliament, but he speedily resigned the seat. In 1806 he was returned for Queen’s county, for which he sat till 1832, when he withdrew from the representation. In 1833, however, he was returned for Dundee; and after being twice re-elected for the same city (1835 and 1837), he was raised to the peerage in 1841 with the title of Baron Congleton of Congleton. In 1842, having suffered for some time from ill-health and melancholy, he committed suicide. He was a Liberal Whig, and took a prominent part in the struggle of his party. In 1806 he was a commissioner of the treasury for Ireland; it was on his motion on the civil list that the duke of Wellington was defeated in 1830; in that year and in 1831 he was secretary at war; and from 1835 till 1841 he was paymaster of the forces and treasurer of the ordnance and navy. He was the author of several volumes and pamphlets on matters connected with financial and penal questions, the most important being that On Financial Reform, 1830.

He was succeeded as 2nd baron by his eldest son John Vesey (1805–1883), who in 1829 joined the Plymouth Brethren, and spent his life in enthusiastic religious work. He left no son, and his brother Henry William (d. 1896) became 3rd baron, being succeeded by his second son Henry (1839–1906), a soldier who rose to be major-general.


CONGLETON, a market town and municipal borough in the Macclesfield parliamentary division of Cheshire, England, on the North Staffordshire railway, 157½ m. N.W. by N. of London. Pop. (1901) 10,707. It is finely situated in a deep valley, on the banks of the Dane, a tributary of the Weaver. To the east Cloud Hill, and to the south Mow Cop, rise sharply to heights exceeding 1000 ft. Congleton has no buildings noteworthy for age or beauty, save a few old timbered houses. The grammar school was in existence as early as 1553. In the 16th and 17th centuries the leather laces known as “Congleton points” were in high repute; but the principal industry of the town is now the manufacture of silk, which was introduced in 1752 by a Mr Pattison of London. Coal and salt are raised, and the other industries include fustian, towel, couch, chair and nail factories, iron and brass foundries, stone quarries and corn mills. At Biddulph, 3 m. S., in a narrow valley, across the border in Staffordshire, are several coal-mines and iron-foundries. The gardens of the Grange here are celebrated for their beauty. Congleton is served by the Macclesfield canal. The borough is under a mayor, 6 aldermen and 18 councillors. Area, 2572 acres.

Congleton (Congulton) is not mentioned in any historical record before the Domesday Survey, when it was held by Hugh, earl of Chester, and rendered geld for one hide. In the 13th century, as part of the barony of Halton, the manor passed to Henry, earl of Lincoln, who by a charter dated 1282 declared the town a free borough, with a gild merchant and numerous privileges, including power to elect a mayor, a catch pole and an ale taster. This charter was confirmed by successive sovereigns, with some additional privileges. In 1524 the burgesses were exempted from appearing at the shire and hundred courts, and in 1583 the body corporate was reconstructed under the title of mayor and commonalty, and power was granted to make by-laws and to punish offenders. The governing charter, which held force until the Municipal Corporation Act of 1835, was granted by James I. in 1624, and instituted a mayor, 8 aldermen, 16 capital burgesses, a high steward, common-clerk and other officers. Charters were also granted by Charles II. and George IV. In 1282 Henry, earl of Lincoln, obtained a Saturday market and an eight days’ fair at the feast of St Peter ad Vincula, and the market is still held under this grant. In 1311 a Tuesday market is mentioned, and a fair at the feast of St Martin. Henry VI. in 1430 granted to the burgesses a fair at the feast of SS. Philip and James. James I. confirmed the three existing fairs and granted an additional fair on the Thursday before Quinquagesima Sunday. Congleton suffered severely from the plagues of 1603 and 1641, and by the latter was almost entirely depopulated. On the whole, however, the town has steadily grown in population and commercial prosperity from the granting of its first charter.

See Victoria County History, Cheshire; Robert Head, Congleton Past and Present (Congleton, 1887); Samuel Yates, An History of the Ancient Town and Borough of Congleton (Congleton, 1820).


CONGLOMERATE (from the Lat. conglomerare, to form into a ball, glomus, glomeris; so also the general term “conglomeration” for a miscellaneous collection of things, gathered together in a mass), in petrology, the term used for a coarsely fragmental rock consisting of rounded pebbles set in a finer grained matrix. The pebbles must be rounded, otherwise the rocks are breccias, and these have a distinctly different geological significance. They have attained their present shapes by weathering and by attrition during transport by streams and the waves and currents of the sea. The pebbles consist mainly of hard rocks, such as granite, gneiss, sandstone, greywacke, or sometimes limestone. Quartzites, cherts and flints, and vein-quartz are among the hardest and most durable of all rocks, and hence are specially abundant in conglomerates. Fragments of vein-quartz form a large part of the “banket-rock” of the auriferous Transvaal reefs, one of the most important conglomerates economically. In this case the matrix consists mainly of quartz and chlorite, and gold occurs both in the matrix and in the pebbles. Igneous rocks on account of their toughness are also very abundant in many conglomerates; those at the base of the Old Red Sandstone of Scotland, which are thousands of feet in thickness, consist largely of andesite, porphyrite, granite, diorite and porphyry, along with vein-quartz, quartzite and various kinds of gneiss. Soft and friable rocks, on the other hand, such as shale, mica-schist and coal, are rarely found in any quantity