Rochester (Rotch'es-ter), a city of Kent, 29 miles ESE. of London, lies chiefly on the right bank of the tidal Medway, continuous with Chatham, and joined to Strood by an iron swing bridge, constructed in 1850-56 at a cost of £170,000. The castle or keep (1126), which crowns a steep eminence near the bridge, is 104 feet high and 70 feet square, with walls 12 feet thick, and is a very fine specimen of Norman architecture; it was taken by John (1215), vainly attacked by De Montfort (1264), and taken again by Tyler (1381). Both castle and grounds were purchased in 1883 by the corporation from the Earl of Jersey. The episcopal see was founded in 604 by St Augustine, and the foundations remain still of his cathedral. Bishop Gundulf (1077-1107) built a new cathedral, part of whose crypt survives. This cathedral was rebuilt by Ernulf and John of Canterbury (1115-37), the existing nave and the choir was again rebuilt and enlarged in the 13th century in part out of offerings of pilgrims at the shrine of St William of Perth, a Scotch baker, who, on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, was murdered near Chatham by his companion and adopted son. The tower was rebuilt by Cottingham (1825-26), the choir and transepts restored by Scott (1871-77), and the west front restored by Pearson in 1891. The whole pile measures 306 feet in length, and has double transepts; and special features of interest are the Norman west doorway and nave, the Early English choir, the spacious crypt, and a tine Decorated doorway leading to the modern library. Of Rochester's bishops since 604, some eighty in number, may be mentioned Paulinus (previously first bishop of York), Gundulf, Walter de Merton, Fisher, Ridley, Atterbury, and Horsley. St Bartholomew's Hospital, founded in 1078 for lepers, was refounded in 1863; the Norman chapel remains. Watts' Charity House, founded in 1579 to lodge 'six poor travellers, not being rogues or proctors,' has been immortalised by Dickens, whose home, Gadshill (q.v.), is 3 miles distant, and who introduces Rochester into Pickwick, Edwin Drood, and other novels. Three schools are the cathedral grammar-school (Henry VIII.), Williamson's mathematical school (1701; reopened under a new scheme, 1880), and a grammar-school for girls (1888); other buildings are Satis House, Restoration House (Charles II. slept here in 1660), the guild-hall (1687), and the corn exchange (1871). Rochester - the Roman Durobrivœ and Anglo-Saxon Hrofe-ceastre - was made a municipal borough by Henry II. It lost one of its two members in 1885. James II. embarked here in his flight (1688). Pop. (1851) 16,508; (1901) 30,590. See works by Wharton (1691), Thorpe (1769-88), Rawlinson (1717), Fisher (1772), Rye (1861-65), Walcott (1866), and Langton (1880).
Rochester, (1) capital of Monroe county, New York, is on the Genesee River, 7 miles above its entrance into Lake Ontario, 67 miles ENE. of Buffalo and 360 NW. of New York. The river has here three perpendicular falls of 96, 26, and 83 feet, and affords immense water-power. Among the principal buildings are the city hall, of blue limestone, and the court-house; a state industrial school for 500 boys and 200 girls; a Roman Catholic cathedral; the Free Academy; the Baptist university (1850), and a Baptist theological seminary (whose library of 21,000 vols. includes that of Neander). There is a handsome stone aqueduct of seven arches (850 feet long) by which the Erie Canal crosses the river. The principal industries are flour-milling, and the manufacture of ready-made clothing and boots and shoes, rubber goods, photographic apparatus, furniture, agricultural implements and machinery, steam-engines, glass, tobacco, perfumery, etc.; and there are besides numerous foundries, iron-bridge works, cotton-mills, breweries, seed-packing and fruit-canning establishments. Rochester, a port of entry, was settled in 1810 by Colonel Rochester, and incorporated in 1834. Pop. (1840) 20,191; (1880) 89,366; (1900) 162,608 - (2) Capital of Olmsted county, Minnesota, on the Zumbro River, 347 miles by rail NW. of Chicago. It has flour-mills, foundries, and manufactories of furniture, farming implements, etc. Pop. 6850. - (3) A town of New Hampshire, 22 miles by rail NW. of Portsmouth, with manufactures of flannel, blankets, shoes, etc. Pop. 8470. - (4) A borough of Pennsylvania, on the Ohio's north bank, at the mouth of the Beaver River, 25 miles NW. of Pittsburgh. Pop. 4690.