About this image
This handsome marble monument, dating to the 13th century, is of a Lady Constantia, who holds a child in her arms.
In her memory Scarcliffe church rings its curfew every year for three weeks on each side of Christmas. It is said that the lady and her little one were lost in a forest hereabouts, overcome with weariness and cold when the curfew bell of Scarcliffe led them safely home; and she left five acres of land to the church for the ringing of the curfew for ever.
It is most probable that this lady was one of the baronial family of Frecheville, which possessed the manor of Scarcliffe for several generations, till it was forfeited to the crown in 1275, by Adam de Frecheville, who had joined the rebellious barons.
This image is one of a collection by the famous local antiquarian, Thomas Bateman, of Middleton by Youlgreave. (1821-1861). Bateman organized his collection by inserting them into a 4 volume copy of Lysons Magna Britannia, Derbyshire, creating a fascinating and unique illustrated record of the county. The purchase of the collection for Derbyshire Libraries was made possible by the generous bequest of Miss Frances Webb of Whaley Bridge, well known local historian, who died in December 2006.