Atherington Extracts from Gleanings from God's Acre:
A Collection of Epitaphs
John Potter Briscoe was an English author and Principal Librarian of the Nottingham Free Libraries. In 1883 he published Gleanings from God's Acre: A Collection of Epitaphs. Six epitaphs from St Mary's, Atherington are included in the book:
On the tombstone in St. Mary's Church, Atherington, to the Rev. Devon Vicar (Rector of Atherington), and his wife, dated 1662, are these lines :—
Oh love, how strong dost thou tie knots
That death can't solve them with his plots,
Death with thy sting, t' hast lost thine art,
For man and wife thou can'st not part.
True love made us one to live and die,
Our bodys rest below, our souls on high.
The following epitaph is also to be met with in St. Mary's, Atherington :—
Here lieth the body
Of George Paddon,
Who departed this life at Boriate, August 1, 1765,
Aged 42 years.
Dear wife and child and parent mild,
In hope from grief refrain;
That we may meet in joys more sweet,
Never to part again.
Here is an acrostic from St. Mary's Churchyard, Atherington :mdash;
N ot dead ! but sleeping here;
O stay the falling tear.
R edeemed by blood, my soul would rise,
A nd join the ransomed in the skies.
B eloved ones left behind,
E ternal bonds yet bind
E ach heart to heart till we shall come
R ound yonder throne, our heaven, our home.
In St Mary's Church, Atherington, is this epitaph :—
Sacred to the memory of
Sarah, the beloved wife of the
Rev. Robt. Chichester,
Vicar of Chittlehampton,
She died at Ilfracombe, on the 31st August,
And was buried in this Church
On the 10th September, 1825.
Religion was the directing principle of her mind,
And adorned it with those virtues and graces
Which enabled her to perform all the duties
Of a pious Christian, an affectionate wife,
A tender mother, and a sincere friend.
When the ear heard her, then it blessed her,
For she relieved the distressed and comforted the afflicted.
Her attached husband and children,
To perpetuate the remembrance
Of a wife and parent most deservedly dear to them,
Have erected this tablet
As a lasting tribute of their affection and esteem.
Also to Amy, daughter of the above named
Robert and Sarah Chichester,
Who died in the faith and fear of God,
The 26th day of June, 1863,
Aged 81 years.
In St. Mary's, Atherington, is the following epitaph :—
James, the sonne of M. Lewes Vicary,
rector of this parish, was buried
the 16th day of March,
Ano. Dni., 1641.
Of children eleven,
I last was by turn,
Though next to sonnes seven,
Yet first and soon driven
To lodge in an urn.
In St. Mary's Churchyard, Atherington, is this epitaph to be found :—
Seventy-six years I lived on earth
In honesty and peace;
Then, from this vain and toilsome world
The Lord did me release.
And as for all the sinful deeds
That ever I have done,
I hope the Lord will me forgive
Through his beloved son.
 Lewis VICARY, Rector of Atherington, was buried on 5 Feb 1662. His wife Jane was buried on 17 Dec 1662.
 George PADDON was buried at Atherington on 2 Aug 1763.
 Nora BEER, the daughter of William BEER (1813-1879) and Grace ISAAC (1815-1893) was born in Atherington in 1853 and was buried on 16 May 1874. Her twin brother James BEER was buried on 27 May 1874.
 Sarah CAWSEY, the daughter of Robert CAWSEY (1722-1765) and Jane LOVEBAND (1730-1815), was baptised at Atherington on 13 Feb 1758. She married Robert CHICHESTER (1752-1841), son of Charles CHICHESTER (1722-1798) and Amy INCLEDON (? -1782), at Atherington on 11 Jul 1781. Their daughter Amy CHICHESTER was baptised at Atherington on 22 Jul 1782 and was buried there on 2 Jul 1863.
 James VICARY, the son of Lewis VICARY (? -1662) and Jane (? -1662), was baptised at Atherington on 27 Oct 1640.