SCRUTON, a parish in the wapentake of Hang East, and liberty of Richmondshire; 4 miles NNE. of Bedale. Here is a church, dedicated to St. Radegund (see Churches for photograph); the living is a rectory in the patronage of Henry Gale Esq. of which the Rev. William Newsome A.M. is the incumbent. Pop. 411.

Here that eminent critic and antiquary, Dr. Thomas Gale, dean of York, was born in 1636. He was educated at Westminster school, and being admitted King's scholar there, was elected in 1655 to Trinity-College, Cambridge, and became fellow of that society. Having taken his first degree in arts in 1656, he commenced M.A. in 1662 -Regius professor of Greek in 1666 - In 1672, he was appointed to the head mastership of St. Pauls school, in London, soon after which, by his Majesty's directions, he drew up those inscriptions which are to be seen upon the monument in memory of the dreadful conflagration in 1666. He took the degree of doctor of divinity in 1676, and in 1697 was promoted to the deanry of York, which dignity he possessed little more than four years and a half; he dying April 8, 1702, in the 67th year of his age. His publications were numerous, a list of which is given in Nichols' Lit. Anec. vol. IV p. 540 Dr. Gale married Barbara, daughter of Thomas Pepys, Esq. of Trumpington, Cambridgeshire, who died in 1689; by whom he had three sons and a daughter, Mr Drake says, "The loss of this great man would have been irreparable, did not the fathers genius still, exist In his son," alluding to his eldest son Roger Gale, F.R.S. and A.S.S. equally famous as an antiquary. He was educated under his father at St. Pauls school, admitted at Trinity College, Cambridge, in 1691; made scholar of that house 1693, and afterwards fellow in 1697. He was the first vice-president to the society of antiquaries, and treasurer to the royal society. He published his father's Comment on Antoninus's Itinerary in 1709, and the "Registrum Honoris de Richmond" in 1722. His " Discourse on the four Roman Roads in Britain" is printed in the 6th vol. of Leland's Itinerary. Other valuable papers of his, on antiquities are to be met with in the Philosophical transactions -Horsleys Britan. Romana-Archoelogia-Gent. Mag. &c. He left all his MSS. to Trinity College, Cambridge, and his cabinet of Roman coins to the public library there. He married Henrietta, daughter of Henry Raper, Esq. of Cowling, who died in 1720, by whom he had one son, Roger Henry, who married Catharine, daughter of Christopher Crowe, of Kiplin, Esq. and had issue, Henry, (died May 27, 1821) Samuel, and two daughters. He died at Scruton in 1744, and was buried in the church-yard obscurely, by his own desire. His estates at that place were very considerable, and are now in the possession of F. L. Coore, Esq. who married Harriet, eldest daughter of the above Henry Gale. He represented Northallerton in parliament for several years.

Samuel Gale, the dean's youngest son, born in London, and educated by his father at St. Pauls school, was also eminent for his knowledge of antiquities; he left many valuable collections behind him relating to the antiquities of England, but published nothing in his life-time. He died in 1754, in the 73rd year of his age. His very valuable library and fine collection of prints, were sold by auction in 1754. -Nichols.

The family of Gale, was of eminence in the Norfolk and East-Ridings, in the 16th century; the earliest of the name that occurs, was James Gale, seated at Thrintoft, in the parish of Ainderby-Steeple. -Ibid.

[Description(s) edited mainly from various 19th century sources by Colin Hinson. ©2010]