' RECENT LORDS OF THE MANOR
THE PEDIGREE OF THE BOWER FAMILY - By H. Syndercombe Bower
I SUPPOSE family pedigrees, like the lists of ancient kings, often have a misty and uncertain dawn, and of Michael de Boure, whose name is said to appear " in ancient rolls at ye Conqueror's coming/' we may probably make the same comment as is appended to the name of a certain Aleanor, three generations later, " but who married her or what became of her was not found." The family appear to have had property, including Bower Chalke, on the southern borders of Wilts, and Heralds' Visitations in the time of Edward III. seem to have found them there.
Hutchins's " History of Dorset" considers we are on more solid ground in John Bower, in Henry VI.'s reign, and this John's grandson held lands in Lower Donhead, to which the first Thomas Bower, in the reign of James I., added land in East Orchard, where he was buried. This said Thomas married four times, and left an enormous family, and one of his wives possessed the unusual name of Worbarrow. It is quaintly recorded that " he was a man of great means, but was ruled by his wives and became weak in his estate," a sort of thing that has happened before and since! One of the sons is thus described: " Being a famous boy at Oxford and greatly learned in Greek and Hebrew, he died young," so it seems to be darkly insinuated that he died of too much Greek and Hebrew, which was probably an unusual cause of mortality among country gentlemen of that date.... '
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