Gloucester. 1. An English town, on the left bank of the Severn, 38 miles N.N.E. of Bristol. It was made a Roman station (Glevum) by Claudius, and was the seat of several religious houses, of which the last, a Benedictine Abbey, was suppressed in 1530. Two years later the See of Gloucester was founded. It was held by Hooper and Warburton among others, and was joined with that of Bristol in 1836. The cathedral was begun in the 11th century, and finished in 1498. It is chiefly Perpendicular, but the crypt and the interior of the nave are Norman. The east window is the largest in England, and the building contains the canopied shrine of Edward II., a statue of Jenner, and a group by Flaxman. Its fan-vaulted cloisters and fine stained glass are also among its glories. The cathedral was restored by Sir Gilbert Scott. Here, alternately with Hereford and Worcester, is held the festival of the Three Choirs. Other notable buildings in Gloucester are the Deanery, the New Inn (15th century), the Tolsey (guildhall), and the King's School. It was in medieeval times one of the chief places in the west of England, and the repulse of Charles I. before it was one of the most important events of the Great Rebellion. It was once the seat of a thriving cloth manufacture, but is now chiefly a commercial town. The trade of its port has largely grown in recent years. Corn and timber are imported, and agricultural and mineral produce form the exports. Several Parliaments have been held at Gloucester, which now has one member. Taylor, the water-poet, Whitefield, and Raikes, were natives of the city.
2. A port of Massachusetts, United States of America, 28 miles N.N.E. of Boston, was incorporated in 1642. It has a good harbour and extensive fisheries. Ship-building and granite quarrying also employ the inhabitants.