[From Manx Soc vol XXI]


IT had been the intention of the editor to have given a more particular account of the family of Mylecharaine than what is stated in the first series of Mona Miscellany, p. 54, and considerable trouble has been taken to accomplish this, but without effect. It was desirable to obtain information as to the time when the person who is said to have found the treasure lived, and one of his descendants has repeatedly promised to look up some of their old deeds that would have given the date as to the time they first acquired property in Jurby, but has failed to do so. One thing, however, was done ; the editor obtained the loan of an ancient cross, which, along with some other small valuables, had been handed down from their forefathers. This, after being cleaned from the soil and peat which filled up some parts of it, and entirely concealed the engraved portion, turned out to be silver. It had evidently lain long unused, from its blackened appearance, and probably formed one portion of treasure that had been concealed in early times when the Isle of Man was subject to so many raids from Norsemen and others, and probably was the foundation of the rise in fortune of the Mylecharaine family.

An exact drawing of this cross has been carefully made, which will no doubt be an acceptable contribution to the Manx antiquary. The small ring at the top, by which it was suspended, has been unfortunately broken ; it is otherwise quite perfect. It is evidently of great age, if we may judge from its workmanship and peculiar form. It bears a very striking resemblance to the St. Cuthbert gold cross, found on his body at the opening of his tomb in 1827, a drawing of which is given in Chambers’s Book of Days, vol. ii. p. 312. 1864. St. Cuthbert was bishop of the Northumbrian Island of Lindisfarne, and died in the year 688. His body, after several removals, found a resting-place in 1104 in Durham Cathedral. If the Mylecharaine cross be assigned to the same age, it will, indeed, be entitled to be called an antique.

The principal part of the property is in Kirk Christ Lezayre, part in Andreas, and part in Jurby, and being intack, bears no name, only a number in the Lord’s book. The old house is not in existence. There is a field called Gaht ny thieyn—the Field of the Houses. Mrs. Jane Cashen of the Curraghs, Jurby, is the lineal descendant or representative of Mylecharaine.

There is a tradition that Mylecharaine was an illegitimate son of one Christian of Milntown, who, fearing an invasion, hid some valuable property in the Curragh, which this son afterwards secretly took up, and from thence was called

Molley e chiarciel,
Deceiver of my care.

The Mylecharane Silver Cross

There appears to be a reference in will of William Mylecharane,1721


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Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
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