Calendar of royal documents: William II (nos. 47-56)

Pages 40-44

Westminster Abbey Charters, 1066 - C.1214 London Record Society 25. Originally published by London Record Society, London, 1988.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by London Record Society. All rights reserved.


William II (nos. 47–56)

47.* Notification of WII, generally addressed, that he has confirmed the grant which Abbot Gilbert and the convent made to Hugh de Coleham and his heirs, of being dapifer of the abbey, and proctor under the abbot. Westminster [1085 × July 1100]

Pro, Carte Antique Rolls, C52/21.

Pd: Foedera I, pt. i, 2; Gilbert Crispin, 30 (extracts).

Cal: Regesta I, no. 437.

Date: Limited by the d. of W II (in Hants.), and the appointment of Abbot Gilbert (Heads, 77), hence prob. a writ of W II. Hugh was prominent among the abbot's men, although given no title, in a record of a transaction ante Jan. 1098 (488).

Note: The abbey would have no further need to keep its own record of this grant after Hugh's descendant surrendered the office to Abbot William in 1198 (310). The authenticity of this document has been questioned (Regesta I) because of the attestation of an otherwise unknown Robert de Beaumont. It is possible that the witnesses were a later addition, although the suspect may simply have been an obscure kinsman of Robert, count of Meulan, who also attests.

48. Writ of W II, ordering Peter de Valognes and the sheriff and officers of Essex to restore to the church of St Peter of Westminster the land of Broomfield (Brom'), where Wlmar was tenant, and which was wrong fully taken by Thurold, dapifer of [Odo] the bp. of Bayeux. He confirms the abbey's possessions of Moulsham, to which Broomfield pertains, as it was granted by King Edward, and confirmed by W I. Windsor [Sept. 1087 × ante March 1093]

F, f. 60v.

Pd: Harmer, 507.

Cal: Hart, no. 100.

Date: Attested by Robert Bloet without a title. He was nominated bp. of Lincoln prob. March 1093 and consecrated shortly before 22 Feb. 1094 (Fasti III, 1). Peter de Valognes was still sheriff of Essex when the Domesday Survey was compiled (Sheriffs, 43).

Note: Cf. Harvey, WA, 343.

49. Writ of W II, informing Maurice, bp. of London, Geoffrey de Mandeville and the sheriff and barons of London that he has confirmed to St Peter of Westminster [St. Mary] Newchurch as Alward the clerk gave it, and as W I confirmed by writ. Winchester [1091 × ante 2 Feb. 1093]

F, f. 76 (Henricus rex).

Pd: Gilbert Crispin, 137, no. 10.

Cal: Regesta I, no. 306.

Date: Attested by Geoffrey, bp. of Coutances, who d. 2 Feb. 1093 (Gams, 542; J.-F. Lemarignier, Etude sur les Privilèges d'Exemption et de Jurisdiction ecclésiastiques des Abbayes normandes depuis les Origines jusqu'en 1140, Archives de la France monastique 44 (Paris, 1937), 167), and by William of St Calais, bp. of Durham, who rebelled in the spring of 1088 (F. Barlow, William Rufus (1983), 70, 74, and n.97). He was restored to favour in 1091, and d. 2 Jan. 1096 (Fasti II, 29).

Note: St Mary Newchurch is also known as St Mary Woolchurch (Keene & Harding, 229–30). See also W. A. Carter, 'St Mary of Westcheap, London, called Newchurch', JBAA, n.s. 25 (1913), 83–110. Compare the wording of 54.

50. Writ of W II, informing Peter de Valognes, sheriff of Essex, and his officers, that he has conceded to Abbot Gilbert the manor of Feering, with customary rights which Abbot Vitalis had, and his other predecessors TRE. [Sept. 1092 × ante 6 March 1093]

WAD, f. 243; F, f. 59v.

Pd: Gilbert Crispin, 140, no. 17, from WAD.

Cal: Regesta I, no. 436; Hart, no. 106.

Date: Attested by Abbot [Anselm] of Bec, who arrived in England Sept. 1092, when he met the king briefly. They next met at the Christmas court at Westminster, and subsequently at Gloucester, on 6 March 1093, when the king appointed him to Canterbury (The Life of St Anselm archbishop of Canterbury, ed. and transl. R. W. Southern (1962), 63–5 and notes; R. W. Southern, 'St Anselm and Gilbert Crispin, abbot of Westminster', in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, ed. R. W. Hunt and R. Klibansky, III (1954), 87–115).

Note: Feering had been granted by W I in exchange for Windsor (9; Harvey, WA, 341; cf. 10).

51. Writ of WII, informing Hugh de Beauchamp and the men of Bucks. that, on his order, and before named judges, Abbot Gilbert proved his title to the land of Burnham and Cippenham, granted by W I, and he is to hold it peaceably. [1091 × Dec. 1095]

WAD, f. 499; F, f. 55r–v.

Pd: Gilbert Crispin, 136, no. 9, from WAD.

Cal: Regesta I, no. 370.

Date: One of the judges was Robert Dispenser, who d. 1095 × 1100 (Beauchamp Cartulary, xx), and prob. ante 1098, since his restitution to the abbey, seemingly made on his deathbed (488), was witnessed by Bp. Walkelin of Winchester, whod. 3 Jan. 1098 (Fasti II, 85). The (unnamed) bp. of Winchester was a judge in the present suit, but the see was vacant Jan. 1098–Aug. 1100 (ibid.). The (unnamed) bp. of Durham was also a judge, whereas this see was vacant Jan. 1096–May 1099 (ibid., 29), following the d. of William of St Calais, who had been in disgrace 1088–1091 (ibid.).

Note: Cf. Harvey, WA, 338.

52. Writ of W II, informing his barons and men of Mddx. that he has conceded to St Peter of Westminster and Abbot Gilbert the manor of Ebury (Eye), as granted by Geoffrey de Mandeville and his (second) wife Lecelina, with sake and soke, and other customary rights. London [1087 × ante 3 Jan. 1098]

WAD, f. 100; F. ff. 57v–58; LN, f. v. verso; CAY, f.v verso (rubric attributes to W I).

Pd: Regesta I, no. LXV, from WAD; Gilbert Crispin, 140, no. 16, from WAD and LN.

Cal: Regesta I, no. 402; Bentley, 4, no. 16, from CAY, as a charter of W I.

Date: Attested by Bp. Walkelin of Winchester, who d. 3 Jan. 1098 (Fasti II, 85). H I's confirmation states that this earlier one was made by W II (59). Geoffrey de Mandeville still held Ebury in 1086 (DB I, f. 129b).

Note: Cf. Harvey, WA, 350–1. The abbot's house, 'La Neyte', and its adjacent lands were subsequently regarded as distinct from Ebury, the name used from the 13C for the manor as a whole (ibid., 350n.4). See also Rutton, 'Eye next Westminster', 31–58.

53. Writ of W II, ordering Hugh of Buckland and the sheriff of Mddx. that St Peter of Westminster is to hold the land of Yeoveney, which is pasture pertaining to the manor of Staines, and which Abbot Vitalis recovered in a lawsuit against Walter Fitz Oter. Abbot Gilbert is not to be impleaded of the land, except in the presence of those bps. and barons who gave judgement in the plea. The land is to be held as fully as King Edward gave it. [1087 × 1100]

F, f. 55; T, f. 19r–v; LN, f. xxv recto; CAY, f. xxvii verso (extracts).

Pd: Gilbert Crispin, 138, no. 12, from F with LN.

Cal: Regesta I, no. 455; Bentley, 11, no. 104, from CAY.

Note: Harvey, WA, 354–5; Harmer, nos. 97–8; DB I, f. 128a–b.

54. Writ of WII, informing the men of London that he has conceded to St Peter of Westminster St Mary Newchurch as Alward of London gave it, and ordering that the abbey is to hold it as fully and peaceably as W I commanded by his writ. [1087 × 1098]

WAD, f. 505; F, f. 64r–v.

Pd: Gilbert Crispin, 137, no. 11, from WAD.

Cal: Regesta I, no. 454.

Date: Attested by Count Alan (of Brittany, lord of Richmond). Alan 'the Red', d. 4 Aug. 1093 (R. W. Southern, Saint Anselm and his Biographer (1966), 187n.2, where the evidence emanating from Bury St Edmunds, Count Alan's burial place, is preferred to that of other sources. Southern does not, however, consider the York evidence for 1089: The Chronicle of St Mary's, York, ed. H. E. Craster and M. E. Thornton, Surtees Soc. 148 (1934), 113). The count's younger brother, Alan 'the Black', was d. by 1093 (C. T. Clay, Early Yorkshire Charters IV, 87).

Note: St John's Abbey, Colchester, later claimed that, at the death of W II, the church pertained to the fee of Eudo dapifer (Cartularium Monasterii Sancti Johannis Baptiste de Colecestria, ed. Stuart A. Moore (Roxburghe Club, 2 vols., London, 1897), I, 50). The present writ, like 49, appears genuine. They were perhaps successively requested following Eudo's appropriation and retention of the church. A further writ ordering restitution of the church was issued by Henry I (90) but Abbot Herbert did not succeed in recovering it (244). The Colchester claim was supported by blatant forgeries (Gilbert Crispin, 158–66. See also Oxley, 'Medieval Church Dedications', 118).

55. Notification of W II, generally addressed, that he has granted to St Peter of Westminster and Abbot Gilbert the churches in Rutland with their appurtenant lands, as Albert the Lorrainer held them of the king. [1087 × 1096]

WAD, f. 594; F, f. 62v.

Pd: Monasticon I, 301, no. XLIII, from F.

Cal: Regesta I, no. 381.

Date: Hugh de Port, who attests, d. 1096 (G.E.C. XI, 317). Alberic (sic) still held three churches in Rutland in 1086 (DB I, f. 294).

56. Writ of W II, ordering W. the sheriff to act justly towards the abbot concerning the churches in Rutland, which Osbern the clerk holds of him, and their customary rights. [Sept. 1087 × ante 29 May 1099]

WAD, f. 594; F, f. 65 (Hosbertus).

Pd: Gilbert Crispin, 139, no. 14, from WAD; Formulare, no.LXIII, from F.

Cal: Regesta I, no. 420.

Date: Rannulf Flambard, who attests without a title, was nominated to Durham, received the temporalities, 29 May 1099, and was consecrated 5 June (Fasti II, 29).

Note: The reading Hosbertus in F may be a corruption of Albertus, and therefore indicate that this clerk is identical with the earlier holder of these churches (55).