St Michael's Church, Theydon Mount

Church Details


Visited
19/03/2004
Locking Status
Locked - no keyholder details
Built
1611-1614


External Images

St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


The church seen here today was completed in 1614. It was built 
by Sir William Smith, and was consecrated by John King, Bishop of London. 
Sir William's uncle, Sir Thomas Smith, was in the process of 
re-building Hill Hall when he died in 1577. His monument is housed on the north 
side of the chancel, having been moved from the previous church that stood on 
the site, which was destroyed by lightning in 1611.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


The W tower has diagonal buttresses and battlements, and low 
spire. The W window has intersected tracery. The tower has a Dutch style 
staircase.

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Internal Images

St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


The full view East from the back of the church. The feeling 
one gets from walking into this church is incredible. Its array of monuments is 
immense, and gives a great sense of completeness.

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Glass Images

St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


The East window, depicting St Michael's war in heaven against 
Lucifer, the rebel Archangel - afterwards called Satan, was given in memory of 
Major Charles Hunter and his wife. It has recently been restored, to prevent 
damage due to bending lead fittings.

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Hatchment Images

St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


This hatchment was for Anne Hedges d. 1719, who was the first 
wife of Sir Edward Smyth, 3rd Bt. Although rather faded, the left-hand side of 
the hatchment appears to have been white when it was created, showing that Anne 
was survived by her husband.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


This is the hatchment created for the funeral of Sir Edward 
Smyth d.1744, 3rd Bt. Survived by his second wife, as depicted 
by the right-hand shield.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


This hatchment is for Elizabeth Wood d.1748, 2nd wife of Sir 
Edward Smyth 3rd Bt.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


This is the hatchment of Sir William Smyth 6th Bt, who died 1777.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


This is the hatchment of Abigail, wife of Sir William Smyth, 
6th Bt. She died 1787.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 




This is the hatchment of Anne Bowyer, wife of Sir 
William Smijth, 7th Bt. She died 1815, and was survived by her husband.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 




This is the hatchment of Sir William Smijth, 7th Bt., who died 
1823.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 




This hatchment belongs to Sir Thomas Smijth, 9th Bt, who died 
1838.

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Monument Images

St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


Monument to Thomas Smith d.1577. This monument was moved from 
the old church.
Sir Thomas is depicted 'stiffly' reclining, head propped up on 
elbow. There is a shallow coffered arch behind the figure, flanked by two Ionic 
columns, with an entablature carrying two black obelisks and the large 
achievement shown above.

	The inscription within the arched recess reads thus:


	Thomas Smithus Eques auratus huius Maneriu DNS,
cum Regis Edvardi sexti tum Elizabatha Regina Consiliarius, ac 
frimi nominis Secretarius eorundemq, Principum ad maximos Reges
legatus Nobiliss ordinis Garterii Cancellarius, Ardae Australisque
Claneboy in Hibernia Colonellus, Iuris civilis supremo titulo etiam
num Adolescens insignitus Orator, Mathematicus, Philosophus,
excellentiss (vs) Linguarum Latinae, Grecae, Hebraicae, Gallicae etiam
et italica callentiss (vs) Proborum et ingeniosorum hominum favtor
alieniss Deniq sapientia, pietate, integritate insignis et in omni vita
sev aeger sev valens intrepidus more, cum aetatis svae 05m annum
compleuisset in aedibus suis Montaulensibus 12o die
Augusti, Ao Salutis 1577 pie et suauiter
in Domino obdormiuit

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


This second image of the panelled altar tomb of Sir Thomas 
Smith shows his Achievement at the top of the tomb.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


This standing wall-monument depicts Sir William Smith d.1626 (builder 
of the church) and his wife, Bridget. Sir William is slightly higher than, and 
behind, his wife. 

	To the pious memorie of her loved and loving husband
Sr William Smyth of Hill Hall in the County of Essex knight
who till he was xxx yeares old followeed the warres in
Ireland with such aprobation that he was chosen one
of the Colonels of the Army. But his uncle Sr Thom. Smyth
Chancellor of the Garter & Principall Secretary of
State to two princes King Edward the sixt & the late
Queene Elizabeth of famous memorie dying he returned
to a faire & full inhaeritance, and so bent himselfe to
the afaires of the countret that he grewe alike famous
in the artes of peace as warre. All offices that sorted
with a man of his quality ge right worshipfully performed
and dyed one of the Deputy Lieutenants of the Shire. A
place of no smalle trust and credit.
Bridget (his unfortunate widow who during the space
of XXXVII yeares bare him III sonnes and IIII daughters)
daughter of Thomas Fleetwood of the Vache in the County
of Buckingham Esq and sometimes Mr of the Mint to
allay her languor and longing after so deare a
companion of her life rather to expresse her affection
than his merit this monument erected destinating the
same to herself theire children and posteritie he
lived years LXXVI dyed the XII day of December 1626. 

The arched recess and background are very similar to the 
monument to his father ...

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


... at the bottom, however, are seven kneeling figures of Sir 
William's children, three sons ...

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


... and four daughters.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


Monument to Sir William Smith d.1631, son of Sir William Smith who 
built the church. He survived his father by just five years.
Here lyeth the body of Sr William Smith Knight 
sonne of Sr William Smith of Theydon Mount in the Countie of Essex wher after 
manie sweet expressions of his confidence in the mercies of his Saviour in the 
two and thirtieth yeare of his age peaceably slept in our Lord Jesus He had two 
wives. The first, Heleglnwagh [Heliganrith?] the daughter of the right 
honourable Edward Viscount Conway. By her he had only one sonne and heire Edward 
and two daughters. The second, Anne descended of the auntient [ancient?] family 
of Croft in Herefordshire as yet living who as a testimonie of her loyall 
affection erected this to the memorie of her deare consort deceased on the 5th 
of March 1631.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


The final large monument in the church is to Sir Thomas Smith 
d.1668, the son of Sir William Smith d.1631. Of black and white marble, with no 
super-structure. To each side of the inscription can be seen thick angle volutes 
ending in cherubs' heads.
Here lyeth y body of Sr Thomas Smith of Hill 
Hall in the County of Essex Baronet (Son of Sr William Smith of y same place Knt) 
He had two wives. Y first Joanna (the daughter of Sr Edward Altham of this 
County) by her he had Eleven Sons & two Daughters where of nine Sons are yet 
living. She died July 14th 1658. The second Beatruce (Daughter of y Right Honble 
Francis Viscount of Valentia) who died March 26, 1668 After he had lived 66 
years with great reputation for Loyalty to his Prince & Conformity to the Church 
of England in Apostate times and served his King & Country in Chiefest places of 
trust and credit in the County, peaceably departed this life in our Lord Jesus 
This Monument as a testimony of the true affection of his son Sr Edward Smith 
Baronet was erected to the memory of his deare Father deceased on the 5th of May 
1668

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 



	Near this place lies interred
Sr EDWARD SMYTH Baronet
of Hill Hall in this Parish
Son of Sr EDWARD SMYTH and JANE
Daughter of PETER VANDEPUT Esqr
Whom
His Contemporaries well knew
to be a man of Integrity,
strict Justice and good Morals,
to be a lover of Virtue and Religion
and to have resolution enough to practice them:
And
Whose true character
posterity may from this Inscription
understand and learn to Imitate.
He had two Wives.
The first ANN, Daughter of the Right Honourable
Sr CHARLES HEDGES Secretary of State,
by whom he had five Sons,
four of which and an only Daughter
are now living:
This Lady dying Octbr 18th 1719,
He afterward Married ELIZABETH
Daugther of JOHN WOOD of LONDON Esqr.,
who having survivied him,
As a testimony of her great and constant Affection,
has caused this Monument to be Erected
to the Memory of her dear and worthy Husband,
who died on the 16th of August
1744
in the 59th Year of his Age
ELIZth, his Second LADY Died 23 of May 1748 Aged 57

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 



	IN MEMORY
OF Sr EDWARD SMYTH Barr
Who died the 4th of March 1760
Aged 30 Years;

AND OF ELIZABETH
the Daughter and Heiress of THOMAS JOHNSON
of Milton Bryant in Bedfordshire esqr
HIS LADY
Who died the 22nd of June 1770
Aged 34 Years;

This Monument is Erected by his next Brother
Sr CHARLES SMYTH Barr

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 



	In Memory of
Sr CHARLES SMYTH of Hill Hall
In this County Baronet
who Died March the 24th 1773
AEtat 61.
this Monument is Erected
By his Nephew Sr William Smyth Bart

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 



	Sir Wm. OB 26th JANry 1777 AEtat 57
Near this Place lie Interr'd the Remains of
the Revd Sr William Smyth Bart.
Rector of this and Stapleford Tawney Parish,
more than twenty two Years.
He was a Student of Trinity Hall in Cambridge,
And admitted to the Degree of L.L.B. in that University.
He was the fifth Son of Sr Edward Smyth Bart. of Hill Hall
to whose Title and Estates he Succeeded
after the decease of his Brothers,
Sr Edward and Sr Charles who both Died without Isue male.
He marryed Abigail, Daughter of ANDREW WOOD Esqr,
four of whom (Sr William, Elizabeth, Charles & Richard)
are still living to lament with their disconsolate Mother,
the very heavy loss of so good an Husbandm Father and Friend
to whose endearing Memory
Lady Smyth
hath caused this monument to be erected August 1777.
Honeste vizit neminem laesit suum cuique tribuit, [???]
go Reader and do likewise.
ABIGAIL his lady died the 28th? of February 1787. Aged 71?

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 



	In memory of
WILLIAM SMYTH, ESQR.
eldest son of Sir WIlliam and Lady Smyth,
of Hill Hall
in the county of Essex
Late Cap. in His
Majesty's 1st Regt of Foot Guards,
who died March 16th 1803,
Aged 23 Years.
As a proof of their affection
for the loss of one so much beloved
they have caused this monument
to be erected

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 





	In memory
of
Sir JOHN SMYTH Bart.
Commander R.N.
of Hill Hall
in the county of Essex
who died at Woodmanstone
in the county of Surrey,
on the 9th of Decr 1838,
Aged 56 years.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 





Large Perpendicular Gothic tablet to Rev Sir Edward Bowyer Smith d.1850, by Osmond, Sarum.	
	Sacred
to the Memory of
The Revd Sir Edward Bowyer Smijth.
10th Baronet of Hill Hall;
and sometime Rector of this Church,
with that of Stapleford Tawney.
He was the fourth Son of Sir William Smijth, Baronet,
and his Wife, Anne Windham.
He married Laetitia Cicely, 6th daughter
of John Weyland, Esquire,
of Woodraton, Oxon, and Woodrising, Norfolk,
by whom he had three sons and four daughters.
He departed this life, respected and deeply lamented,
on the 15th of August, 1850.
Aged 65 Years.
This Monument was erected by his Widow
Dame Laetitia Cicily Bowyer Smijth.
Also to the Memory of the above-named
Dame Laetitia Cicely Bowyer Smijth.
She died on the 3rd of March 1863, Aged 31 [???]
"Into thy hands I commend my spirit,
for thou hast redeemed
me. Oh Lord, thou God of truth."

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Miscellaneous Images

St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


Believe it or not, this is actually a font. It is unique, and 
is believed to have been brought back from Italy by Sir William Smith when the 
church was being built. 
It has a black marble basin on a pillar, and is surmounted by 
a carved face similar to faces on spouting fountains.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church

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Postcard Images

St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - 


This black and white photograph is on display in the church.

The West Gallery was built in 1837, during a restoration by 
Sir Edward Smyth, the then rector. The gallery was installed for use by servants 
and musicians. It was, however, removed in 1929, as it was in grave danger of 
collapsing. 
Suspended from the roof are two 'Coronals' or 'Maiden's 
Crowns'. These represent an old custom of placing such a crown on the coffin of 
a girl who had been betrothed, but had died before her marriage. They are shaped 
like a crown and are covered with evergreen leaves. There were originally three 
of these crowns in the church. Today there is just one remaining, though this is 
currently undergoing preservation and restoration. More details on this 
restoration can be found by clicking
here.

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St Michael, Theydon Mount Church - Dated 1970. One of a series of photos purchased on ebay. Photographer unknown.

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Location Map

 


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