Ulf whose lands after the conquest became the see of Gislebert de Gand, had in
Chenefale and Cheversale twelve bovats for the geld. (fn. 1) The land of his manor was
for four plows, or so many car. There Gislebert had in demesne three car.
eight sochm. on three bov. of land, and sixteen vill. four bord. having twelve car.—
There were twenty two acres of meadow, pasture wood one leu. long, Half a leu broad.
In the Confessours time it was 8l. value, in the Conquerours 6l. having soc in Almentun and Mapleberg.
The constables of Chester held this manor very anciently, (fn. 2) and when they were earls
of Lincolne are certified to have held of the fee of Gilbert de Gaunt three knights fees
in Kneesall, with the appurtenances of the old feoffment (fn. 3) The church was given by
some of the first constables to the priory of Norton in Cheshire of their foundation, as in
Radclive on Sore is noted. (fn. 4)
The first constable of Chester was Nigellus, who with his five brothers Hudard (an
cestor of the Duttons) Edward, Wolmer, Horswin, and Wolsan came with Hugh,
whom William the Conquerour made earl of Chester, to hold as free by his sword, as
himself all England by his crown; which said earl Hugh gave this Nigellus the barony
of Holton, to which belonged nine knights fees and an half, and a fourth part, and a
fifth part of a fee, by the name of the constabelry of Chester, and made him his marshal
and constable, so then whensoever the said earl should move his army towards Wales,
the said Nigellus and his heirs should go first in, and come last out.
William the constable, son of this Nigellus, founded an house of canons at Runcorne
1133, (he was very old then) and was buried at Chester, where he died.
William the younger his son, who succeeded in the inheritance, transferred the canons to Norton, and died without heirs of his body, leaving his sisters Agnes and Matilda his heirs.
(fn. 5) The story makes Agnes married to Aubert Grelly, but certain it is that Anneissa,
daughter of William the constable of Chester, was second wife of Eustace Fitz-John, and
over-lived him, whose son and heir by her was Richard constable of Chester, who married Albreda, the daughter and heir of Robert de Lisures, son of Fulc de Lisures, and
of Albreda his wife. (fn. 6)
(fn. 7) This Robert de Lusoriis, 5 Steph. gave account of vilil. vis. viiid. that he might
marry the sister of Ilbert de Lacy.
(fn. 8) Ilbert Lacy who lived in the Conquerours time, begot of his wife Havisia
Robert Lacy, who by Matilda his wife had Hilbert and Henry, and founded a monastery at Pontefract, their principal place of residence, where he was buried in the time of
William Rufus. Ilbert his son had to wife Alicia Gaunt, but no issue; Henry his
other son married (Albreda it seems) the sister of William Vesci governour of Berwic,
and by her had Robert Lacy his son and heir, who died about 4 R. 1. 1193, and having no issue by Isabell his wife, Albreda, the daughter of Robert de Lisoures, his sister by the mothers side, became his heir, and carried a very great inheritance to the
constables of Chester, though besides her husband Richard before named, the had one
called William the ancestor of the Fitz-Williams, named in Plumtre. By her husband
the said Richard she had John Laci constable of Chester, and Robert the hospitaler, and
Sara, wife of Robert de Alford, and Aubrea de Lisures, wife of Henry Biset. (fn. 9)
(fn. 10) In the year 1186, Garner de Naples, prior of the house of the hospital of Hie
rusalem in England, by the consent of the chapter, granted to John constable of Chester and
his heirs, their whole town of Knesale, which they had of the gift of the said John, to be
held of their house by the rent of two marks of silver yearly, yet so as that at his death,
and likewise at the death of each of his heirs, the third part of his and their substance
which they shall have in Knesale, shall remain to their said house of hospitalers, for the
health of his or their souls. This John had to wife Alice Vere, who was also married to
William Mandeville; she was daughter of Alice de Essex, aunt of earl William, and
sister of earl Alberic. (fn. 11) Adelicia, sometime wife of John constable of Chester, granted
and confirmed to the monks of Rufford, (fn. 12) her whole land of Almeton, which belonged
to her see of Chesale, which was of her dower, according as it was confirmed in the char
ters of the said John her lord, and Roger de Laci her son, reserving 10s. per annum
rent. (fn. 13) This John is said to be slain in the holy land the fifth of the Ides of Octob.
1183, but that agrees not well with what before is set down, except Robert Lacy his
uncle over-lived him, and the hospitalers deed should be dated 1168, instead of
(fn. 14) This John had several sons, Eustachius, Richard, Chester, Gaufr. Robert,
constable of Chester; but his eldest son Roger Lacy the constable, for troubling the
Welch, got the name of Helle: he with a sudden raised a company of shoemakers and
players, relived Ranulf earl of Chester besieged in a castle in Wales, for which the
said earl gave him and his heirs the dominion and advowson of those kind of people,
which it seems this Roger gave to his Senescal, one of the heirs of Hudard, whom
his brother Nigellus, before-named, made Senescal of his barony, because the Duttons jurisdiction and inheritance is excepted, out of the statutes, 39 Eliz. and 1 Jac.
concerning vagabonds and rogues.
This Roger married Matilda de Clare, sister of the treasurer of the church of Yorke,
and by her had John the second, constable of Chester, whom he left to succed him
1211, after whose death the said John took to wife Alesia, daughter of Gilbert de
Aquila, and after her death Margaret, the daughter of Robert de Quenci, niece of
Ranulf earl of Chester, and by her was made earl of Lincolne 1221, 5 H. 3. on whom
he begot Edmund de Lacy constable of Chester, but not earl of Lincolne, because his
mother over-lived him. John died the eleventh of the Kal. of August 1240, 24 H.
3, and his son Edmund 1248, after he had begotten his son Henry de Lacy earl of
Lincolne, on his wife Alesia, daughter of the marquels of Saluces in Italy; her mother
after the death of her husband the said marquess, was married to Menfred, son of
Frediric the emperour, who begat on her Constancia, wife of Peter, son of James
king of Arragon.
In the year 1282, king Edward gave to Henry de Lacy earl of Lincoln, for his
service, two cantreds in Wales, viz. of Roos and Roweignok. He had by Margaret,
daughter of William Longespey, Edmund de Lacy, junior, who died young, and
John, who was slain by a fall from a tower in Pontefract cattle, before he was marriageble, and Alife his daughter and heir, who at nine years old was betrothed to Thomas of Lancaster king Edwards nephew, son of Edmund earl of Lancaster his brother,
which Thomas earl of Lancaster her husband was beheaded in the year 1321, and the
after married her old love Ebulo le Strange, but had no issue; her father the said
Henry earl of Linc. died 3 E. 2. 1310. aged sixty years, having settled a great part
of his estate, 22 E. 1. for want of heirs of his said daughter Alesia, on the heirs of
the said Thomas earl of Lancaster her husband; and thus ended this noble line.
(fn. 15) Henry earl of Lincolne died seised of this manor of Knesale, and the wapentak
of Allerton, and other lands of the fee of Gaunt and Tikhill. The heirs of John Burdon held of him a knights see in Mapelbeck, Kirketon, and Bucketon; John de Kirnesale in Kirnesale a tenth part; Raph de Welwike, John de Calneton, Robert Coly.
and Richard Freman, a fourth part in Kenesale; Margery Foliot a fee in Grimston,
with its members; Richard de Sutton a fee in Alerton; William Fitz-Williams three
parts of a fee in Weston, Sternethorp, Sutton, and in Keworth; in Cotum by Dunham,
Marneham, Hatheley, Muscham, Karleton, Skeggeby, another fee; in Mareton, Hareworth, and Lympole half a fee; in Plumtre by Hareworth, a sixth part of a knights
fee; in Styrap and Ulcotes a fourth part; in Costerthorp and Hardwick' another fee;
in Claverburgh and Hayton the fourth and eighth part of a fee; in Clumbre a sixth part,
in Alberton a third, in Drayton a fourth, and an eighth part, &c.
(fn. 16) John de Felton, 3 E. 3 claimed to have view of frank-pledge and weyf, and
free warren in his manor of Knesale.
Thomas earl of Norfolk and Suffolk, and Marescal, 6 E. 3. (fn. 17) passed to the king
and his heirs the manor of Knesall, with many others in several counties.
(fn. 18) The jury, 34 E. 3. found that William de Bohun earl of Northampton held
when he died, the manor of Knesale, by the charter of king Edward the third, and
that Humfrey de Bohun, was his son and heir.
(fn. 19) The jury, 1 H. 4. found that Alianor, wife of Thomas late duke of Gloucester,
one of the daughters and heirs of Humfrey de Bohun late earl of Hereford, died sei
sed of this manor of Knesale. Anne, wife of Edmund earl of Stafford, Joane then
aged fifteen years, and Isabell thirteen, were her three daughters and heirs. In 4
H. 4. (fn. 20) they found that Edmund earl of Stafford when he died held the manor of
Knesale, of the inheritance of Anne his wife, and that Humfrey his son and heir was
then one year old; she the said Anne afterwards 7 H. 4. (fn. 21) was wife of John [William] le Bourghchier, chr. Humfr. duke of Buckingham about 38 H. 6. (fn. 22) died
seized of the manors of Radcliffe on Sore, Knesale, and Colston Basset, leaving Henry, son of Humfrey, son of the said duke, his heir.
The manor of Knesall, late Edmund duke of Buckinghams, 13 H. 8. (fn. 23) was granted to John Hussey, knight, and the heirs males of his body. John, lord Hussey
was attaint in parliament, 31 H. 8. and in 3 or 5 E. 6. this manor and many others
were granted to Edward Fynes lord Clinton and Say, lord admiral of England, and
Robert, earl of Kingston, had it, and with his posterity it continueth.
There was a chantry founded at the altar of St. Nicolas in Knesall, by one John
Chapman, of the city of York, publique notary, who held lands while he lived in
Kneesall, Ampton and Allerton, which were granted by queen Elizabeth, 18 Eliz. (fn. 24)
To John Mershe, esquire, and Francis Greneham, gent. there was a recovery 17
and 18 Eliz. (fn. 25) wherein John Meringe, gent. and John Burton claimed against William Meringe, knight, two mess. one hundred acres of land, five hundred acres of pasture in Kneesall, who called to warrant Thomas Meringe, esquire, son land heir of the
(fn. 26) In the year 1612, the owners of Knesall were reckoned to be Samuel Hartop,
Gilbert Rosse, gent Robert Clark, and William Walhead.
(fn. 27) The vicarage of Knesall was ten marks, when the vicars choral of Southwell were
patrons; 'tis now ten pounds value in the kings books, and the church of Southwell retains the patronage.
Lordship is chiefly owned by Mr. Pierpont. In this place he holds a court.—
The village appears to be of a middling size.
The church, like most in these parts. is set off with a tower, and is dedicated to St.
Patron, Southwell college and propr. Incumbent, Mr. William Law, V. K. B.
10l. 0s. 0d. Clear yearly value in Bacon, 44l. 0s. 0d. Alloc 6s. 8d. Val. per ann.
in mans. & un. oxgan ter 6s. 8d. Pens. sol. per vic. Southwell, 10l.