The Parish of Tolleshunt D'Arcy nestles in the Essex Countryside. Its boundary reaches down to the River Blackwater
D'Arcy Hall is a moated house situated just South of the Village Church (St. Nicholas, Tolleshunt D'Arcy)
The house was originally the residence of the D'Arcy family. The building was started by the D'Arcy family who intermarried with the De Boys family in the 15th Century.
The village would seem to have its name from Tolleshunt - a derivation of Toll's Funt (or fountain), and the D'Arcy family. There is a previous reference to Tolleshunt Boys. Not long ago a source of pure water would have been a necessity, whether from a well or a spring.
The house was begun in about 1450. It is possible that the original bridge over the moat was a drawbridge. However the present bridge of brick and stone dates from about 1585.
D'Arcy Spice Trees
The avenue at the entrance to D'Arcy Hall contains a row of D'Arcy Spice Trees. The D'Arcy Spice apple was first found in the garden of the Hall at Tolleshunt D'Arcy in 1880; they are a late russet variety which is picked in November and keeps until May.
The D'Arcy Spice apple (an old dessert apple) was first found in the garden of the Hall at Tolleshunt D'Arcy in 1785 (some sources say in the 1880's) . The apples are a late russet variety which is picked in October/November and keeps until April/May, kept cool, if possible refrigerated. The flavour is richly aromatic, sweet, yet acid, though needs a very hot summer to gain the spicy flavour after which it was named. The skin is a bright green/yellow
with dark ochre russetting, some dark purple, brown flushing. It is picked in October and ready to eat in November onwards. Parentage: Unknown
Recipe ~ Tipsy D'Arcy Spice Apples
The D'Arcy Spice apple was first found in the garden of the Hall at Tolleshunt D'Arcy in 1880; they are a late russet variety which is picked in November and keeps until May. If D'Arcy Spice apples are not available, then Edgemont Russet will make a satisfactory alternative.
2 lb. D'Arcy Spice apples 4 oz. soft brown sugar, 3 oz. unsalted butter, 1 large glass sweet white wine, Serves 6
Set oven to 450ºF. Butter an 11 inch oval, ovenproof dish. Core, slice, but do not peel, the apples. Lay the apple slices in the dish with the slices overlapping. Sprinkle on the sugar and dot with small pieces of the butter. Pour the wine over the top and bake until tender.
Red Hill near Tolleshunt D'Arcy: Over three hundred Red Hills, the remains of prehistoric and Roman salt making sites, are found along the Essex coast. Before electrical refrigeration, salt played a
crucial role in the preservation of meat and fish and a very valuable commodity. In Essex, the sea provided a great resource for salt and many of those who lived along the coast would have, on a seasonal
basis, be involved in extracting salt from sea-water. The sun would evaporate sea-water trapped in open pans cut into the water-tight clays. This concentrated brine was then boiled in rough ceramic
vessels until all the water was removed and only the salt remained. The crudely-made vessels, known as briquetage, and are found in large quantities at the sites, and, along with the burning process, result
in the red soil which makes of the mounds of debris. This site is now situated in eroding salt-marsh outside the modern sea-wall, and inspection on the ground shows that layers of broken briquetage
survives above layers of charcoal, the remains of ancient fires.
(photo: D. Strachan; copyright: Essex County Council)
Margery Allingham (May 20 1904- June 30 1966) was a writer of detective stories. She invented the detective Albert Campion. She lived in D'Arcy House, Tolleshunt D'Arcy from 1935 to 1966.
Margery Allingham was born on May 20, 1904, in Ealing, a London suburb. Shortly after her birth the family moved to a square, white, late-Georgian house which had been the rectory at Layer Breton, between Maldon and Colchester, and she was to spend most of her life in or near that part of Essex.
In 1932, Margery and her husband, the writer and illustrator P. Youngman Carter, rented Viaduct Farm at Chappel and three years later they bought D'Arcy House, formerly the home of Dr J H Salter, at Tolleshunt D'Arcy, near Maldon, which was to be their home for the rest of their lives. She died of cancer on June 30, 1966.
Books by Margery Allingham:
The Allingham Minibus: More Short Stories (1973) Mr. Campion's Quarry (1971) The Allingham Case-Book (1969) No Love Lost (1969) Mr. Campion's Farthing (1969) Cargo of Eagles (1968) The Mind Readers (1965) The China Governess (1962) Hide My Eyes (1958) The Beckoning Lady (1955) The Tiger in the Smoke (1952) More Work for the Undertaker (1949) Deadly Duo (1949) Coroner's Pidgin (1945) Who Killed Chloe?(1943) Traitor's Purse (1941) Black Plumes (1940) Mr. Campion and Others (1939) The Fashion in Shrouds (1938) Dancers in Mourning (1937) Flowers for the Judge (1937) The Case of the Late Pig (1937) Dancers in Mourning (1937) Flowers for the Judge (1936) Death of a Ghost (1934) Sweet Danger (1933) Police at the Funeral (1932) Look to the Lady (1931) Mystery Mile (1930) The White Cottage Mystery (1928) Mystery Mile (1927)
Thurstable Hundred may have got its name from the Nordic God Thor. Thor was the God of Strength and Thunder. Thor also gave his name to the weekday Thursday.
The word Hundred is also somewhat obscure, but is thought to refer perhaps to a hundred families, or the ability to raise a hundred soldiers or to a hundred hides of land.
The measure of a hide is also somewhat uncertain, being the area of land likely to support a free family and dependents. This could perhaps vary between 60 and 120 acres.
Each Hundred would have its own court with powers similar to those of a Manor Court. This was abolished in 1867 by the County Court Act of Parliament.
Days of the Week
Sunday is the first day of the week. From prehistoric times to the close of the fifth century of the Christian era, the worship of the sun was dominant. Sunday celebrates the sun god, Ra, Helios, Apollo, Ogmios, Mithrias, the sun goddess, Phoebe. The metal gold, as dedicated in the symbols of alchemy, is associated with the sun god and Sunday. In the year 321, Constantine the Great ruled that the first day of the week, 'the venerable day of the sun', should be a day of rest. The sun's old association with the first day is responsible for the fact that the Lord's Day of Christianity bears the pagan name of Sunday. Constantine (274 A.D. -338 A.D.) was the fist Christian Roman Emperor.
Monday is the second day of the week, day of moon goddess, Selene, Luna and Mani. Derived from Lunae Dies, day of the moon, the name reflects the ancient observance of feast days dedicated to moon goddess or planet. The metal silver, dedicated to the moon, is associated with Monday.
Tuesday is the third day of the week. In the Roman calendar the corresponding day was dies Martis, the day of Mars, associated with Ares. Tiw's day is derived from Tyr or Tir, the god of honorable war, the wrestler and the son of Odin and, or Woden, the Norse god of war and Frigga, the earth mother. His emblem is the sword, and in olden days the people paid him great homage. Tuesday was named in his honor. The metal iron, dedicated to Mars and interpreted as his spear and shield, is an attribute of Tuesday
Wednesday, the fourth day of the week, corresponds to the Roman Dies Mercurii. The name derives from the Scandinavian Woden (Odin), chief god of Norse mythology, who was often called the All Father. Quicksilver, a liquid mercury that contains amounts of the platinum group metals, has been interpreted as the caduceus of the Greek Hermes (Mercury in Roman myth), and is therefore an attribute of Wednesday.
Thursday is the fifth day of the week. It derives its name from the Middle English Thoresday, or Thursdaye, corresponding to the Roman dies Jovis. Thor, the god of strength and thunder, defender and help in war, son of Odin, is the counterpart of Jupiter or Jove. Thor is one of the twelve great gods of northern mythology. He is the only god who cannot cross from earth to heaven upon the rainbow, for he is so heavy and powerful that the gods fear it will break under his weight. It was said that whenever Thor threw his hammer, the noise of thunder is heard through the heavens. Thursday was sacred to Thor. The metal tin is associated with the thunderbolt of Jupiter (Zeus in Greek myth) and is an attribute of Thursday.
Friday is the sixth day of the week. The name is derived from the Germanic Frigga the name of the Norse god Odin's wife. Frigga is considered to be the mother of all, and the goddess who presides over marriage. The name means loving or beloved. The corresponding Latin name is Dies Veneris, a day dedicated to Venus, the goddess of love. The metal copper, dedicated to Venus, is associated with Friday.
Saturday is the seventh day of the week, corresponding to the Roman dies Saturni, or day of Saturn, the Roman god of agriculture. Saturday is also represented by Loki, the Norse god of tricks and chaos. The metal lead is associated with the scythe of Saturn, and is therefore an attribute of Saturday.