Is a large parish, containing the whole town of Semere, (fn. 1) which, at
the Conquest, was as large as Dickleburgh itself, to which it is now
a hamlet. This town was anciently divided into four parts or portions, each of which had a rector of its own, and served in their
turns in Dickleburgh church. The first portion was called sometimes Fouldon, sometimes the Portion in the Marsh, (it being the
lowest part of the town,) sometimes the Portion of Henry, who was
rector in 1256, but most commonly, the Portion of Richard, who
was rector of it when the Lincoln taxation was made, it being then
valued at x. marks; out of this portion the Abbot of Bury had an
annual pension of xv.s. The second was called, the Portion in the
Fields (it being the upper part of the town,) sometimes the Portion
of Henry, (fn. 2) and sometimes Culphoe's Portion, John de Culphoe being
rector at the Lincoln taxation, (fn. 3) and John of St. Edmund's Bury, at
the Norwich taxation, when it was valued at c.s. and paid a pension
to the Abbot of St. Edmund of ix.s. yearly. The third portion belonged
to that part of the town which is now called Langmere, (fn. 4) and is still a
hamlet belonging to it, all which lies in the hundred of Earsham,
and hath a separate leet, which now belongs to Dickleburgh Hall
manor, and its jurisdiction extends to all that part of the town which
lies in Earsham hundred. The leet and royalties of the other part
in Diss hundred belonging at this time to the lord of the hundred,
but there are no leet fees due to either of them; this was in the
Conquest included in Semere, of which it was near the half, and was
given to Butley priory, after the decease or cession of Ranulf the
chaplain, who had been presented thereto by William de Aubervil,
and Maud his wife, which Maud was daughter to Ranulf de Glanvil,
and belonged to the land that the said Ranulf held of Thomas Noell;
at the Norwich taxation it was valued at x. marks, and in the Lincoln
at xiii. marks; it was appropriated to that convent about 1180, by
John of Oxford, Bishop of Norwich, without any vicar to be endowed, they being obliged to find a stipendiary chaplain only, who
was to administer the sacrament, and perform all duties to the
parishioners of that portion only; (fn. 5) this was confirmed by several
Archbishops of Canterbury, and by Thomas de Grey, and Thomas de
Blundevile, or Blomevile, Bishops of Norwich; and thus it continued
till 1454, when it was disappropriated by consent of all parties, and
consolidated to the other Portions, the Abbot of Bury giving the
prior security that the future rectors should ever pay to that priory,
a yearly pension of 3s. 4d. a year, clear of all service due from the
said portion. The prior also had lands in this part of the town,
given by Ranulf de Glanvil, which were taxed at 1d. 0b. (fn. 6) The
fourth Portion was called Semere, (fn. 7) and contained the other half of
Semere, that lay in Diss hundred, and was sometimes called Matthew's
Portion, from Matthew, (fn. 8) who was rector of it at the Norwich taxation, when it was taxed at vj. marks; it was after named Alexander's
Portion, but most commonly John's Portion, from John de Hemenhale, who was rector of it at the Lincoln taxation, in which it is
valued at 6 marks and an half; this portion was of the smallest
value, because it was chargeable with a pension, (valued in the Norwich taxation at 8s. and in the Lincoln at 10s.) payable every year,
to the Prior of St. Faith's at Horsham; concerning this pension, I
find in a register formerly belonging to Bury abbey, (fn. 9) a grant made
by Reymund, Prior of St. Faith's, to Sir Ralph Hemenhale, parson
of the fourth part of Dickleburgh, and his successours for ever, of
two parts of the tithes of the demeans formerly of Sir William de
Cheyney, of the fee of his barony of Horsford in this town, by the
authority and consent of Ralf de Walpole Bishop of Norwich, and
his chapter, for the annual payment of 10s. sterling, which tithes
were given by the said William to that monastery; all which demeans, with their several quantities, names, and tenants, are recited
therein. The deed was sealed by the Bishop, the Abbot, the Prior
of St. Faith's, the Rector, and the Prior of Norwich; and for this
pension the Prior was to allow and pay 12d. tenths. (fn. 10) The two Portions called Fouldon and Semere were consolidated in 1429, (fn. 11) and in
1449, they were consolidated to the Portion in the Fields; and in
1454, the appropriation of Langmere Portion being resigned, it
became one rectory, chargeable with the annual pensions of 3s. 4d.
to the Prior of Butley, 10s. to the Prior of St. Faith's, and 24s. 1d. 0b.
to the Abbot of Bury, (fn. 12) and hath so continued ever since.
This advowson, with the manor now called The Rectory Manor,
was procured by Syward, a monk of Bury, at which time it belonged
to the manor of Titshall, (fn. 13) and with that was given to this monastery,
there being at that time only one chaplain or parish priest; but before
the Conquest, the Abbot had given the manor to the church, and
infeoffed it in two priests, who held it at the survey; (fn. 14) these, with the
parochial priest, made three portions, all which were in the presenta
tion of the Abbot of Bury till the Dissolution, (fn. 15) each rector having a
house, with a carucate of land, a third part of the manor, (which they
divided,) and the tithes of their separate portions; at the Dissolution,
the advowson went to the Crown, and was granted, in 1536, to Thomas
and James Bacon, Esq. and the heirs of Thomas; in 1547, they aliened
it to Nicholas Bacon, Esq. and his heirs; and he, in 1550, to Thomas
Godsalve and his heirs, who, in 1557, sold it to William Mingay, and
he soon after to Stephen Lacy, Gent. and he to John Whitman, who,
in 1567, aliened it to Charles Le-Grice, Esq. and his heirs, who kept
it but a little while; for in 1570, it belonged to John and Thomas
Whipple, and John Whipple of Pulham-Market, in which family it
continued some time; for in 1603, William and Thomas Whipple
were patrons, who left it to their daughters; the one married to
Robert Boiens, the other to George Gawdie, both which held it in
their wives' right in 1632, (fn. 16) from whom it came (I suppose by sale)
to Thomas Buxton, who at his death left it to Thomas, his son, and he
dying without issue, left it to his wife, and her heirs; and soon after
it belonged to one Congham of Wells, of whom George Chamberlain,
D. D. Fellow of Trinity-College in Cambridge, purchased it, and presented his nephew Samuel Needham to it, after whose death he gave
it to the Senior Fellow of Trinity-College for ever.
The rector hath a good house and 80 acres of land adjoining to it,
together with the Rectory Manor, the Custom of which is, that
the copyhold descends to the youngest son, and the fine is at the
lord's will. It is in the deanery of Redenhall, and archdeaconry
of Norfolk, and liberty of his Grace the Duke of Norfolk, and is thus
valued, the pensions being bought off:
|King's Books||Tenths.||Acres Glebe.||Synodals.||Procurations.|
The First Portion, called Fouldon, or the Portion in the
1256, Henry was rector.
1291, John de Melford, priest.
1334, Robert de Penteny, accolite.
1376, 21 March, John de Watton, priest.
1410, 28 Sept. Robert Serjeaunt, priest.
1411, 27 October, John Tybbynham, priest, in whose time Semere
Portion was consolidated to this, viz. Octob. 25, 1429.
1446, 17 Sept. John Brigge, chaplain, on Tybbynham's resignation, at whose death, in 1454, they were consolidated to the Portion
in the Field, and John Bulman had possession of them Dec. 13, 1454.
The Second Portion, or the Portion in the Fields.
Roger the parson.
1231, Henry Freeman, rector.
1276, John of St. Edmund's Bury, rector.
1291, John de Culpho, rector.
1316, 13 kal. Oct. John de Culpho, sub-deacon.
1329, 7 id. Octob. Andrew de Bynham, priest.
1329, 6 id. March, Robt. de Norton, priest, on Bynham's reignation.
1349, 30 October, Robert de Fouldon.
Godfrey de Snetisham.
1391, Will. Cornewaille, priest, on Snetisham's resignation.
1392, Richard Marwyk, on Cornewaille's resignation.
1393, Thomas Elyott, on Marwyk's resignation.
1394, Richard Aylweyn, on Elyott's resignation.
1402, 25 October, William Bardoclyff, on Alyweyn's resignation,
John Osberne. (fn. 17)
1417, 27 Jan. Tho. Wode, a shaveling.
John Knowlls, on whose resignation
John Bulman succeeded, in 1449.
The Fourth Portion, or the Portion of Semere.
1231, Matthew of Cambridge, rector to 1256.
1256, Jan. 18, Master Rustand, sub-deacon, chaplain to the Pope,
presented by the King, during the vacancy of the abbey.
Alexander the priest.
1266, Ivo the priest.
William de Lopham.
1288, Ralph de Hemenhale, on Lopham's death.
1291, John de Hemenhale.
1302, 10 kal. Apr. Robert de Gravenny, or Craneby, priest.
1322, 5 id. July, John de Hemenhale, priest.
1349, 4 Nov. William de Melford.
1357, Henry, son of John de Lydgate, priest, on Melford's resignation.
1360, 22 Decem. Peter de Hoo, on Lydgate's resignation.
1360, 6 March, Thomas Osberne, priest, on Hoo's resignation.
1361, 17 Nov. John de Edlington, accolite.
1365, 27 April, Gilbert de Wortham, on Edlington's resignation.
1399, Richard Fysch, priest.
1400, 8 Octob. Thomas Page, priest.
1402, 5 August, Simon Smith, on Page's resignation.
1402, 9 August, Thomas Faldyngworth, on Smith's resignation.
Thomas Wylomond, at whose resignation in
1417, 3 Sept. Thomas Kynthorp was instituted.
1421, Thomas Savage, priest.
William Brixey, on Savage's resignation. He died 1429, and
in that year
October 5, it was consolidated to Fouldon, or the Portion in the
1449, John Bulman (fn. 18) was instituted to the Portion in the Fields, on
the resignation of Thomas Wode; and in 1454, 13 Dec. the consolidated portions of Fouldon and Semere were consolidated to this, and
possession given to John Bulman aforesaid, who held the whole benefice till 1497, and then resigned it; upon which, in
1497, 6 June, John Alleyn, A. M. was instituted to Dekylburg,
with all the portions annexed. (fn. 19)
1531, 24 Dec. Rich. Eden, doctor of the decrees. The King, by
grant from the Abbot.
1551, 4 Aug. Tho. Cardon, A. M. on Eden's death. Tho. Godsalve of Norwich, Esq.
1554, 23 Dec. William Stockwith, priest. Ditto.
1557, 30 October, Richard Lusser, A. M. on Stockwith's resignation.
1558, 2 Sept. James Green. William Mingaye, Alderman of
1561, Tho. Roberts, A. M. on Green's resignation. Lapse.
1576, 28 June, Robert Sayer, D. D. on Robert's death. Henry
and Tho. Whipple of Dickleburgh, Gent.
1622, Christopher Barnard, dispossessed by the Earl of Manchester
1643, Elias Crabtree had it, at the dispossession of Mr. Barnard; (fn. 20)
he signed the attestation of the ministers of this county, Ao 1648.
1662, Mr. Barnard was restored, and the 22d Sept. in this year,
he subscribed the Articles, being at that time master of arts. (fn. 21)
1680, 11 October, John Richar, A. M. on Barnard's death. John
Richar, and Nich. his son, for this turn.
1684, 19 April, Samuel Needham, on Richar's death. George
Chamberlain, S. T. P. Fellow of Trinity-College in Cambridge,
He was succeeded by John Whitfield, D. D. of Trinity-College,
The Rev. John Baker, D.D. the present  rector, succeeded
at the death of Dr. Whitfield. Trinity-College, Cambridge,
In 1643, Christopher Bernard, "was dispossessed by the Earl of
Manchester, who tendered him the covenant, and offered him to
keep his place if he would take it, both which he generously refused, and by necessary consequence brought on himself the
common calamities and fate which then attended loyalty and
fidelity to his Majesty, for his house was plundered and rifled of a
great deal of plate, linen, and other goods; he was also seized and
dragged away towards Norwich castle, but by his excellent life and
doctrine, he had so much recommended himself to his parishioners,
that they thought a greater judgment could not befall them, than
to loose him, and so by consent they followed the party that had
him in custody, and rescued him: they also gave this further testimony of their affection towards him, that when the villains had
designed to plunder his house a second time, unknown to him,
they voluntarily went, and by force secured the remainder of his
goods in their own houses, and even the very women and children
assisted in this perilous undertaking, to the manifest hazard of
their safety, perhaps of their lives, if it had been discovered. He
had at the time of his sufferings, a wife, and at least nine young
children, which helped to compleat his misery, and sufficiently
aggravated the barbarities which were exercised upon him; 'tis
remarkable he had always a firm perswasion of his Majesty's
Restauration, which he afterwards lived to see, and was himself
one of the first ministers restored in this county, after which he
enjoy'd his rectory 20 years, and having been admitted about the
year 1620, and not dying 'till 1680, (in the 84th year of his age)
he must in all have been rector of it near 60 years."
Thus far Mr. Walker, (fn. 22) in which account there are some small
errours, all which may be corrected by this inscription on his stone in
the chancel, viz.
Christopherus Barnard Filius secundus Roberti
Barnard de Langham, juxta Wells in Comitatu
Norf: Gen: hujus Ecclesiæ per quinquaginta,
Et octo annos Rector, et Alicia uxor ejus, Henrici
Congham de Wells, Gen: et Annæ uxoris, filia primogenita, ex
Quâ decem suscepit Liberos, Filios silicet, quatuor, Henricum,
Edwardum, Robertum, et Christophorum, Filiasq; Sex,
Sc. Ceciliam, Annam, Mariam, Aliciam, Brigettam,
Et Sarah, E quibus altera Obijt xxio Die Mensis Octobris Ao
Dom: MDCLX. Ætat: Suæ LXII. alter quinto die Mensis Octob:
Ao Dom: MDCLXXX. Ætat. Suæ LXXXIII. contumulantur
Heic, in quorum Memoriam, Alicia Filia Humphredi Rant,
Gen: uxor, hoc Marmor L. M. P. P.
Isti sunt Liberi Edwardi Bernard, Rectoris de Dyss,
Anna, sepulta 11 Febr. 1662.
Edwardus sepult. 16 Sept. 1665.
Sarah sepult. 16 Jan. 1668.
Dorothea sepulta. 16 May 1670.
ad Caput hujus Marmoris
The Church is a regular building, having its nave, two isles, with
a chapel at the east end of each of them; the chancel, vestry, and
south porch all covered with lead, a square tower and five bells at its
west end, on the second, third, and fourth bells are these verses:
2. Sonitus Egidii acccndit ad Culmina Celi.
3. Dulcis Sisto melis, Campana vocor Michaclis.
4. Sum Rosa pulsata mundi, Maria vocata.
It is dedicated to the honour of all the Saints, and had a gild held
in the south isle chapel, which acknowledged St. Peter and Paul for
their patrons. The guildhall now stands on the west side of the
churchyard, and is used as a town-house.
The following arms were in this chancel as Mr. Anstis's MSS.
Bishop Lyhart, ar. a bull passant in a bordure sab. bezanté.
England with a label of five az.
Wakering, ar. three falcons leures sab.
And in the upper windows of the church there still remain the
cross-swords and cross-keys, the emblem of St. Peter and Paul, the
patrons of the gild, the emblems of the Trinity and of the Sacrament;
the instruments of the Passion; the arms of Bury abbey; of the EastAngles; and of St. George, and also an imperfect coat of three
escalops, the arms of the bishoprick. Erm. a fess lozenge gul. Gul.
a fess ar. Az. a cross floree between five martlets or.
Round the step of the font is this:
Grate pro anima Roberti Buring, et pro animabus quibus tenetur,
Fontem in Honore Dei fecit.
On a stone in the middle alley near the pulpit,
Jarnegan's arms, with a crescent for difference. Crest, from a coronet a demi-eagle displayed.
(fn. 23) Here resteth in the Lord Mrs. Elizabeth Whipple, Wife unto
Thomas Whipple, Gent: and Daughter of Mr. John Jarnegan
of Belton in Somerlee, Esq; Sonne unto Sir John Jarnegan, Kt.
which said Eliz: departed this life the 4th Day of Sept: 1617.
What worth in Woman, or a Wife could be,
What Goodness vailed in fraile Mortalitie,
A godly Mind, a goodly shape in Youth,
A bounteous Hand, wise Heart, unspotted truth.
These Jewells ceased to'th High King's Use, by Death,
Lo heere laid up, their Owner, Elsabeth.
Veni citô Jesu.
On a stone in the chancel:
Dorothea Mason, Relicta Thomæ Mason, Vicarij de AshlyMagna, in agro Leicestriæ, Obijt Maij 7mo. 1690.
Anne the wife of William Owls, minister of Billingford, daughter
of Thomas Sayer, was buried here in 1620, as appears by a circumscription on a stone in the altar rails.
On a black marble in the chancel:
H. S. E. Maria, Johannis Whitfield, S. T. P. hujus Ecclesiæ
Rectoris Uxor, Filia Gulielmi Palgrave nuper de Pulham, Gen:
Quæ dum in Connubio vitam ageret, per Quadrennium cum
dimidio, Conjugis optimæ et amantissimæ Vices præstitit, Pietate
in suos, Benignitate in propinquos, amabilem sine obtrectandi
Usu, præbere se voluit, et quidem Egenis sublevandis Operam
dare, ei maximam erat in delicijs, occubuit Fato, Christi Meritis
fidens, Julij 21mo. die, Anno MDCCXXX. Ætatis suæ tricesimo
tertio, Hunc Lapidem Conjugij eorum memor, Maritus posuit
Mærens, Ipse etiam, apud Wem in Agro Salop: Natus, Coll: S.S.
Trin: Cant: aliquando Socius, vir, bonis Literis, Eloquio, & Humanitate, si quis alius, insignis, sub eadem hoc Lapide requiescit,
16 Octob: 1731, Ætat: 50.
Arms are, a bend between two cottises ingrailed, impaling a lion
On the north side of the chancel is a noble mural monument, of
various sorts of marble, with a lady holding a book, and under her the
(fn. 24) Here under lyeth buried, the Body of Dame Frances Platers,
the daughter and heir of Charles Le Grys, of Billingford in
Norff. Esq; she marryed Sir William Playters of Satterley in
Suff. Knt. & Bart. sometimes one of the deputie Lieuetenants,
and Vice Admir: of the said County, and Justice of the Peace
& Coram, and Coll. of a Regiment of Foot, 'till turn'd out of all,
by the then Rebellious Parliament, and in fine out of that Hous
of Parliament, whereof he had the Misfortune to be a Member.
She had Issue by him only Tho: who married with Rebecka,
the Daughter and Co-heir of Tho: Chapman, of Woormly in
the County of Hartford, Esq; which said Sir Tho: was a great
Traveller, before and after Marriage, his Ladie sometimes beyond the Seas with him, a learned Scholler, an exact Linguist,
expert in all Arts and Knowledge, of rare Temper and Courage,
and of great Esteem in most Courts in Christendom, High
Sheriff for the Countie of Suff: by Commission from his Majestie
of Blessed Memorie, Ao 1646, 'till forced by that fatal Parliament, to flee to the King at Oxford, where by Commission from
his Majestie, he raised a Regiment of Hors, wherewith he performed remarkable Service, 'till his Majesties Forces were totally
ruin'd, and then he departed the Kingdome, arriving in Cicilia,
where by Commission from that Viceroy, he had Command of a
Squadron of Six Shipps, against all Enemies to the Crown of
Spain, which being prepared, he put to Sea, and performed
many gallant Services, much to the Honour of the Spanish Flagg.
In July 1651, he put into the Port of Messina with a very rich
Prize, and posted to the Court at Palermo, where he met with
an Honble Reception, for the several good Services he had performed, but at 4 Days End, he there fell ill of a violent Fever,
whereof within 8 Dayes he died, aged about 35 Years, and by
the Princes Ordir, had an honourable Intermt. & much lamented
there, but much greater cause at Home, leaving no Issue, but a
sorrowful Widw & sad Childless Parents; the said Dame Frances
dyed at Billingford-Hall the 9th of Sept. 1659, from whence by
her own desire she was brought, and interred in this Parish, to
which she often manifested a Charitable Affection.
On the top are the arms of Platers, bendy wavy of six, ar. and az.
Le-Grice, quarterly az. and gul. on a bend ar. three boars sab.
Plater's crest, on a wreath ar. and az. a lion rampant ar. crowned
Le-Grice's crest, on a wreath ar. and gul. a boar sab. armed or.
Platers with Ulster arms, and his quarterings, viz. 1. Ar. a chevron
sab. between three estoils gul. 2. Vert, a lion rampant ar. 3. Sab. a
chevron erm. between three Catherine-wheels ar. 4. Ar. a chevron
between three nags' heads cooped sab. bridled or. 5. Sab. a fess between two chevrons or. 6. Ar. on a fess az. two crowns or. 7. Az.
three cinquefoils or. 8. Erm. on a chief gul. three lozenges or.
9. Ar. on a chief gul. three de-lises or.
Le-Grice and his quarterings, viz. 1. Gul. three crescents or, a fess
ar. 2. Sab. on a chevron ar. three holly leaves vert. 3. Barry of
ten ar. and az. on a canton gul. a lion passant or. 4. Ar. on a
chevron ingrailed sab. three mullets of the field. 5. Quarterly, or.
and az. 6. Az. a fess indented between three martlets or. 7. Sab.
a chevron between three cinquefoils or. 8. Er. a cross chequy or
and gul. 9. Sab. two lions passant guardant ar. 10. Ar. two chevrons gul. 11. Az. a fess between two chevrons ar. 12. Vert, three
round buckles or. 13. Or, a raven ascending proper. 14. Ar. a
cross ingrailed sab. 15. Barry of ten gul. and az.
On the east side of this monument is an ancient painting on the
wall, half of which hath been lately renewed, viz. Christ bearing
his cross; the other part that is still obscure, I take to be Christ
rising from his sepulchre.
The plate belonging to the altar is very fine; the flaggon holds
about two quarts, on which is this:
A Gift to the Church of Dickleburgh, Ao 1715.
The cup is a very good one, and was purchased by the parish in
Queen Elizabeth's time, together with a neat small salver for its
cover; on it is this,
DYCKLEBOURGH. T. F. W. A. REMEMBER GOD.
There is also a good salver, on which,
Tho. Buxton, Gent. et Eliz: uxor, de Dickleburgh, Norf: 1697.
An offering plate of silver, on which,
Ex Dono Aliciæ Rant.
Here is a grave-stone which was laid over Robert Frense, (fn. 25) in the
Middle Alley, though the brass is now gone.
The Town Lands And Gifts
Are, a messuage called Clerks, and a close adjoining, lying in ThorpAbbots, abutting on the highway south, and the common called
Thorp Green, and a close called Langlond, north, and abuts west
on Thorp Green, and also one acre in Thorp, the west head abuts on
Thorp glebe; and also a piece of meadow in Thorp, together with
14 acres in Titshall, all being freehold; the Thorp lands were given
by John Billorne, chaplain, anno 1483, and the Titshall lands by
William Hyll of Dickleburg, anno 1484, and were all settled by deed
of feoffment, dated Febr. 10, 1500, to the use of all the inhabitants
of the town and parish of Dickleburg, (fn. 26) as well those that inhabit
in the greater part of it, which is in the hundred of Dysse, as those
that inhabit in the hamlets of Langmere and Lincroft, which lie in
the hundred of Hersham, towards the payment of the tallages and
fifteenths of our Sovereign Lord the King, on this condition, that
the sixth part of the profits shall go towards discharging the hamlets
aforesaid. This land now belongs to the parish.
They have also a pightle of one acre, called Dove-house Pightle,
and a close of two acres, called the Town Close, both which belonged to the gild, and were purchased by the parish with the guildhall.
There is a gift also of 20s. a year, called Chapman's Dole, paid
out of lands in Burston, which was given by Ralph Chapman, anno
1618. (fn. 27)
The Earl's, or Dickleburgh Hall Manor,
Was the most considerable in this town, (except that which was
granted by the Abbot to the rectory,) though its beginning was very
small, as we learn from Domesday; (fn. 28) but soon after the Conquest it
was enlarged, by the Abbot's infeoffing the Earl of Norfolk, in this
part, and all those lands, services, &c. which belonged to the Abbot's
capital manor, and were not granted with the rectory manor; and
in this family it continued, till the death of Roger Bygod, the last
Earl of that line, who held it jointly with Alice his wife in the year
1306, at which time it contained 180 acres of land in demean, 7 of
meadow, 7 of pasture, 40 acres wood, 2 windmills, &c. and was
held of Robert Fitz-Walter, lord of Diss hundred, at 2s. per annum
rent, paid to his hundred of Diss, to which the leet of this part always did, and now  doth belong. This Roger died in the 35th
of Edward I. without issue, upon which it came to the Crown, and
was granted anno 6th Edward II. to Thomas de Brotherton, EarlMarshal, with the barony of the Bygods; in 1315, the CountessMarshal had it. In 1351, John Lord Segrave of Fulkestone in Kent had
it, in right of Margaret his wife, daughter of Thomas de Brotherton.
In 1360, Edward Mountague, (fn. 29) (or de Monte Acuto,) and Alice his
wife, one of the daughters and heirs of Thomas de Brotherton, held
one moiety as part of the barony of that Earl, and Joan their
daughter, then wife of William Ufford, was their heir. In 1371,
Walter Manney, Knt. held the other moiety in right of Margaret his
wife, late wife of John Lord Segrave, and one of the heiresses of
Thomas de Brotherton. In 1331, William de Ufford Earl of Suffolk
died seized of one part: and in 1399, Thomas de Mowbray Duke of
Norfolk, who had been banished for speaking disgracefully of King
Richard II. (fn. 30) died in banishment at Venice, of the plague, in his return from Jerusalem, seized of this among other manors in 1406, and
it was after held by Elizabeth his widow, who after married to Sir
Gerard de Usflete, and died July 8, in the 3d year of King Henry VI.
leaving it to John Mowbray Duke of Norfolk, who, in 1432, held it
as of Forncet manor; and in this family it continued till the male
issue failed, and then it descended to the Howard family, and continued in it till seized by Queen Elizabeth in 1572, upon the Duke of
Norfolk's attainder; notwithstanding which, in 1576, Nov. 17,
William Dyx of Wickmere, Esq.; and William Canterell of Norwich,
(Gent. as trustees to the Norfolk family) let to Thomas Whipple of
Dickleburgh, Gent. the liberty of fishing and fowling in Semere Moor,
and the Damm's Dyche in Dickleburgh, that is, as much as to that
manor belonged, for 21 years, at 3s. 4d. a year. In 1602, Thomas
Lord Howard and Henry Howard held it; in 1604, John Holland
and Thomas Holland kept their first court, as trustees to that family,
and some time after sold it, with their consents, and by their order,
In 1641, (fn. 31) John Tindall, Gent. was lord; and in 1649, Aslake Laurence, Esq. kept court here. In 1654, John Tindall kept his first
court, after it was conveyed to him by Aslake Lawrence. In 1656,
Mary Tindall, widow, kept her first court; and in 1657, Robert
Congham, clerk, had his first court; in 1658, he leased it to Thomas
Buxton, Gent. and Anne Congham; in 1665, Anne Congham, widow, was lady of it; in 1667, Thomas Buxton, and Robert Howard,
Gent. kept court; and in 1669, John Noblet, clerk, was lord. In
1672, Anne Noblet, widow; in 1678, Thomas Buxton, Esq.; in
1681, Thomas Buxton, Gent. held his first court; in 1698, Elizabeth
Buxton, widow; in 1700, John Michael, clerk, in right of his
wife; in 1716, Elizabeth Michael, widow, who during her widowhood granted it to Samuel Nedham, clerk, rector of Dickleburgh,
and his heirs, after her decease; who at his death gave it to Lydia
Nedham, his wife, who kept court in 1724, and she, jointly with
Mr. William Nedham, late rector of Moulton-Magna, her eldest
son, sold it, in the year 1733, to
His Excellency Horatio Walpole, Esq. who is the present
The Customs of this Manor are these: The eldest son is heir;
the fine is at the lord's will; it gives a third dower; the tenants cannot waste their copyhold-houses, nor fell timber upon the copyhold,
or waste, without license.
There were formerly three other manors, all which belonged to
Semere, and are now fallen into Dickleburgh Hall manor, of which I
meet with the following accounts.
The chief of Semere was, at the Conquest, in the Abbot of Bury, (fn. 32)
who held it as a manor, worth at that time 40s. it being a mile and
quarter long, and as much broad, and paid 6d. geld.
This was soon after the Conquest divided into three parts, the first
of which belonged to the Glanvills, and was given by Ranulph de
Glanvill, with Maud his daughter, to William de Aubervil, who
married her, and was one part of that land which belonged to Thomas Noell, of whom it was then held; it was after changed with Cecily Carbonel, for other lands which she had in Wauteshall. In 1249,
Ralph Carbonel was lord of it, and had the assize of bread and beer
of all his tenants, as the inquisition at that time shews us. From
him it went to Hugh de Semere, who held it of the Abbot; and in the
latter end of Henry the Third's reign, John de Somery held in Semere
the fourth part of a fee: it continued in his family till 1401, and
then was aliened by John de Somery, (fn. 33) to John de Boune, and not
long after seems to be joined to the Earl's manor.
The second part of Semere was, in the Conqueror's time, held by
Walter, under Robert Malet, (fn. 34) lord of Eye, to which honour it was
appendant for some time; and about the year 1200, (fn. 35) Sir William
Cheyny had it, as part of his barony of Horsford, from which time I
meet with no accounts of it till 1370, (fn. 36) when it belonged to Robert
Bacon, who was outlawed for felony; he is said to hold it of Edmund Ufford le Cousyn, by knight's service, as of his barony of
Horsford. (fn. 37) It then contained two messuages, 120 acres of land,
&c. and Joan was wife of the said Robert, who, in 1391, sued the
King for it as her right, at her husband's death, in 1414; (fn. 38) she had
license granted her by the Bishop of Norwich, to have mass said to
her in any decent place. These licenses were then usually granted
to aged people that could not come to church, or to people of distinction that lived at a distance, in which case the priest always had
a consecrated portable altar to officiate at. In 1455, Richard Bacon
had it; in 1538, John Shelton and Anne his wife conveyed it by
fine to Henry Whipple, in whom it was joined to the Earl's manor.
Mantelake's, or Manclerk's Manor,
Was the third manor in Semere, and had its name from some of its
former lords, though I meet with none of them of that name. In
1191, (fn. 39) a fine was levied of it, Alan and William Walter (two brothers) being petents, and Roger de Dicclesburc tenant, whereby
they released it to Roger and his sons, Ivo, Thomas, and John; this
Robert enlarged it by purchasing many lands of Robert de Cokefield
and Postalina, his wife, in Titshall, Dicclesburc, and Riveshall, in
1267. I know nothing more of it till the 15th century, and then Thomas
Abbes held it of the Duke of Norfolk, as of his manor of Forncet. In
1514, (fn. 40) Ric. Spooner held it of the King, by the service of 12s. per
annum, and it was then valued at 10 marks. In 1544, Thomas, son
and heir of John Cornwaleis, Knt. died seized. In 1556, Thomas
Gawdye had it, and Thomas, his son the year following, who seem
to be trustees only; for in 1598, Thomas Spooner, Gent. sold it to
William Holmes and Thomas Edwards, and then it extended into
Sethyng, Mundham, and Loddon; and in 1683, there were divers
lands in Sethyng held of this manor, and soon after it was lost in the
Earl's manor, to which it had some time been joined.
Diccles-Burc, or Burgh, may take its name from some remarkable
Saxon that settled here, and raised a fortification, of some sort or
other, to defend himself and his adherents against the insults of the
Danes, for [Burg] originally signifies a fortified place, or a place of
defence, (fn. 41) and is pronounced differently in divers parts; in the south
parts, bury, in others burgh and brough, and often berry and barrow.
The reason we meet with so many places thus called, in all parts,
may be this, because the Saxons were obliged to get together in
bodies under their leaders, and to fortify themselves in the best manner
they could, against the continual incursions of the Danes, and
therefore in those times, wherever the head fortification of every district was, (if I may be allowed to call it by that name,) there they
assembled in great numbers, and fixed their habitations, as well to
guard their persons and goods, as their dead bodies, from the insults
of these pagans, and in honour of their first leaders, that raised these
fortifications, they generally called them after their names; thus
Attleburgh, Dickleburgh, &c. seem to have had their names, though
in some cases the name of burgh only continues, without the personal
addition, but in such I believe often the name of its founder may be
omitted long since its foundation; Burgh in Lothingland is an
instance of this kind, it being anciently called Cnober's-Burgh, from
Cnoberus; and thus it is very plain, that all places that retain this
name have without doubt been places of more than common note in
early ages, and the great number of them that still retain this name
made me enlarge thus much upon it, that it may suffice for them
In 1603, here were 224 communicants, and now there are about
80 houses, and 400 inhabitants. It paid 3l. 16s. tenths; the parliament valuation was 1032l. and the present one is, for Langmere
part, 335l. and for Dickleburgh part, 668l. [1736.]
In 1428, the Abbot of Bury was taxed at 31s. 2d. ob. for his temporals in this town, it being part of the land belonging to his manor
of Titshall, that extended hither, together with a tenement given to
the abbey in 1120 by Thomas Noell; (fn. 42) the customs and services remitted by the Abbot to Henry Freeman and Mathew de Cambridge (fn. 43) are
said to be these, viz. that the tenants of the rector's manor were before
obliged to do suit of court every fifteen days, at Titteshale court, and
to pay aid and tallage whenever it was laid on the town of Tifteshale,
and to carry part of the Abbot's wine and bord from Norwich, or
Yarmouth, to Palgrave Bridge, and to hedge and ditch round
Tifteshale Stack-yards and to plow one day and reap another, the
Abbot finding them diet. In 1274, the rectors had assize of bread
and beer of all their tenants allowed them upon a Quo Warranto.
Humphry Rant, (fn. 44) Esq. of Dickleburgh beareth, erm. on a fess
sab. three lions rampant or. Crest, out of a coronet ar. a lion seiant
or. Granted by Cook, Clarencieux, anno 1574.
The Commons are Semere Green, which contains about 60 acres;
on this Pulham-Market intercommons as far as Pulham Bridge;
Dickleburgh Moor contains about 80 acres, and Pound or High
Green about 50 acres, on both which Dickleburgh commons solely.
And whereas it is said in Norwich Domesday, that all this town is the
King's, (fn. 45) (tota villa est Regalis,) when the Crown was never concerned
in the manors, it will be proper to observe, that it is meant of the
jurisdiction and special privileges which the Crown had in this and
many other towns, all which were granted by Edward IV. to John
Duke of Norfolk, and is now in the present Duke, whose liberty extends all over this town, as before observed, and will be treated of at
large under Lopham. (fn. 46)