Where Paine did cease

Memorial to Hodgkinson Paine, Cirencester

I saw this memorial in Cirencester Parish Church while on holiday a few weeks ago. According to the information provided in the church, Hodgkinson Paine died in one of the first battles of the English Civil War (though the date of his death is six months before Charles I raised the royal standard, so it must just have been a local skirmish as tensions mounted).

The memorial features a short poem which relies heavily on various puns involving the word “Paine”, by someone who had clearly decided to try their hand at being a metaphysical poet ;-). Here is a version with slightly modernised spelling for ease of reading:


The poor’s supply his life and calling graced,
till wars made rent and PAINE from poor displaced.
But what made poor unfortunate PAINE blessed,
by war they lost their PAINE yet found no rest.
He losing quiet by war yet gainèd ease,
by it PAINE’S life began and pains did cease.
And from the troubles here him God did sever
by death to life, by war to peace, for ever.

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5 Responses to Where Paine did cease

  1. Kelly says:

    I’m vaguely reminded of Herbert’s poem, “The Pulley.”

  2. Alan says:

    Hodgkinson Paine was the standard bearer for the local Parliamentarians who resisted Prince Rupert’s second attack on Cirencester on 2nd Feburary 1642. The town was important to Charles as en route to his recruiting grounds in the Midlands and Wales. About 300 were killed and 1 200 taken prisoner and forced marched to Oxford.
    There is a Civil War pamphlet: “A relation of the taking of Cicester…. on Thursday Febru.2.1642……. Printed at London, 1642” See also: Welsford, Jean: Cirencester: a history and Guide: Alan Sutton 1987 (out of print) and Spencer, Charles: Prince Rupert. 2007

  3. John H says:

    Alan: thanks for the background info.

    (Incidentally, are you Alan Sutton by any chance? :-))

  4. Pingback: Word of the Day: Conceit « Katie’s Beer

  5. Tom P. says:

    Oddly enough the Cirencester Museum has an exhibit that says he was the LAST known casualty of the storming of Cirencester by Royalists in 1643. They list his death as Feb. 3rd, 1643. When I was in the church, one of the docents pointed out his memorial and said he was the first to die. Somehow the town museum and church don’t agree on the date or circumstance.

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