The Records of St. Bartholomew's Priory and St. Bartholomew the Great, West Smithfield: Volume 1. Originally published by Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1921.
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The main sources of information regarding the possessions of the monastery are:
A charter of Henry II—cir. 1176, (fn. 1) enumerating the grants made by his grandfather, Henry I, and since.
Another charter of the same king—1187. (fn. 2)
A charter of Richard I—1190. (fn. 3) (These three charters are practically identical.)
A charter of Henry III—1253. (fn. 4)
The Taxatio Ecclesiastica of Pope Nicholas IV—cir. 1291 (see the end of this chapter (fn. 5) ).
The Rent Roll in the Bodleian Library—1306. (fn. 6)
The Valor Ecclesiasticus—1535–6 (see the end of this chapter (fn. 7) ).
The Computi Ministrorum (Ministers' Accounts)—1440–1 (see the end of this chapter (fn. 8) ).
As the Bodleian Rental is the fullest of all the records, the order there adopted has been followed here in the description of the possessions.
By the Rental we find that the monastery possessed in London and in the counties 12 churches, 6 vicarages or rectories, 12 manors, 3 windmills, and rents and tenements in 53 London parishes, besides rents in the country.
The total gross income of the monastery, as given in the Valor of 1535 (four years before the suppression), was £773 0s. 1½d., and the total net income £693 0s. 10d., of which £451 3s. 7d. was derived from London. The valuation, made a year after the suppression, 1540–1, in the Ministers' Accounts, was not completed.
The valuation in Tunstall's spiritual benefices in the year 1522 is given as 'land and possessions 600 marks, goods 400 marks'. (fn. 9)
The following particulars of the possessions of the monastery outside the monastic walls are given in some detail; also the customs that prevailed in them because, apart from St. Bartholomew's, they are of general topographical and antiquarian interest. The particulars have been extracted and translated mainly from the Bodleian Rental of 1306, which is also printed in extenso in Appendix I, p. 428.
In Little Yarmouth (called Jernemuta (fn. 10) and Gernemutha (fn. 11) in the records), in the hundred of Lothingland (Luddyngeland, (fn. 12) Lugthinglaunde), (fn. 11) the prior and convent held the church of Little Yarmouth, (fn. 10) with the chapel of Northville adjoining, by gift of Henry I, which, like the church in Great Yarmouth, was dedicated in honour of St. Nicholas. (fn. 12) This church of St. Nicholas was in the hamlet of South Town, which, with that of West Town, was known as Little Yarmouth. (fn. 13) It adjoins Gorleston and is connected with Great Yarmouth by a bridge over the Yare. There were no greater tithes (says the Rental) except as regards 3½ ac. in Le Spitelcroft, abutting at the northern end on the close of the friary of the brothers of the order of St. Augustine. The profits of the church consisted entirely of oblations, lesser tithes, and sea fisheries. The church and chapel, with a share of the vicarage, were assessed, for Pope Nicholas in 1291, (fn. 14) at £8 13s. 4d., and were considered worth £20 in 1306. (fn. 15) The vicar received as his share a moiety of all revenues from the church and land, and bore the extraordinary charges, which affected his share, as well as the ordinary charges, as repairs to the chancel, the books and ornaments of the church and chapel. The nomination to the vicarage was with the Bishop of Norwich, who sent the new vicar to the prior and convent to be presented to their share of the vicarage. When instituted the vicar took the oath of fealty to the prior and convent, as did the chaplains of the chantry chapel of Northville.
The house of the Austin Friars referred to above was partly in the parish of Little Yarmouth and partly in that of Gorleston, and went by the name of both places. It was founded some time before the year 1261, (fn. 16) when, in order that the churches of St. Nicholas, Little Yarmouth, and St. Andrew, Gorleston, should not suffer injury by the advent of the friars, a composition was made between William the provincial prior of the Austin Friars and Gilbert (de Weledon) (1261–63), the Prior of St. Bartholomew's, to whom both the churches belonged, whereby William promised to Gilbert and the vicars of these churches 13s. 4d. a year by way of compensation for the loss of tithes, (fn. 17) including apparently, for the deed is in bad condition, an agreement that the parishioners were not to attend mass at the Friary. The 13s. 4d. for oblations in the Valor of 1535 and in the Computi Ministrorum of 1541 is probably this payment.
C. J. Palmer in his Perlustrations of Yarmouth (fn. 18) says that the benefices of West Town and South Town (Little Yarmouth) were consolidated with the vicarage of Gorleston in the year 1511; Lewis in his Topographical Dictionary (fn. 19) says 1520; neither give their authorities. Lewis says the parochial church dedicated to St. Nicholas fell into decay; but Palmer says that St. Nicholas became the conventual church of the Austin Friary, which, in the face of the Twyne record (above) of compensation made by the friary to St. Nicholas, and from Palmer saying that it was 'at some distance from the friary', seems most improbable. That St. Nicholas, Little Yarmouth, was consolidated with St. Andrew, Gorleston, in 1511 or 1520, accounts for the church not being mentioned in the Valor of 1535. There are no remains of the church now extant.
Reference has already been made to the relics from St. Bartholomew's being brought to the oratory of St. Nicholas. (fn. 20) There then remains the question of the church of 'St. Mary ultra pontem', demolished in 1548, the site of which Palmer says was to the south of the present railway station on the west side of the road. That there was a church of St. Mary here is shown by a lease in the Record Office to Edward Weldon, dated the 22nd August, 27 Henry VIII (1535), of certain glebe lands at Gorleston in which the 'oblations, tithes, and other profits of St. Mary's near the bridge of Yarmouth' were specially excepted. Also among the grants to Fuller by Henry VIII in 1541 occurs' oblations in St. Mary's chapel of Yarmouth, Norfolk' (fn. 21) (an evident mistake for Suffolk, as St. Bartholomew's had no property in Norfolk, though a small portion of South Town does happen to be included in Norfolk). (fn. 22) Probably these are the same oblations which were withheld from the lease of 1535. Palmer says this church of St. Mary was demolished in 1548 and that the stones were used in constructing the pier at the haven's mouth, and that no vestige of the edifice remains. (fn. 23) Human remains have occasionally been found on the site of the graveyard of the church.
Nearly opposite, on the east side of the road, the present small church of St. Mary was erected under the Church Building Act, 5 George IV, and was consecrated in 1831. (fn. 24)
As, from the above evidence, it is clear that this church of St. Mary belonged to St. Bartholomew's, we may reasonably assume that it was 'the chapel of Northville adjoining' Little Yarmouth granted to St. Bartholomew's by Henry I referred to above.
The profits of the sea fisheries mentioned were known as 'Christ's Dole'. In the fourteenth century they were withheld, but restored by the king on petition in 1322–3, as has been already fully described. (fn. 25) In 1409 we learn from the grant of indulgences by the pope that 'on account of the frequent impulse of the sea and its floods many possessions of the monastery in the parish of "Sowthton" of Jernemuth had been so much destroyed that for several years the prior had received little or nothing from them'. (fn. 26)
In Gorleston, (fn. 27) adjoining Little Yarmouth, the prior and convent held the church, also by grant of Henry I, (fn. 28) 'with other churches and chapels in Luddyngeland': (fn. 29) such as, no doubt, St. Nicholas just referred to, Lowestoft and Beleton, all of which, with Gorleston, are referred to in Testa de Nevill as being held of the king by Master Alan de Stok, who paid to the canons of St. Bartholomew's 10 marks a year, and were then worth 100 marks. (fn. 30) The church of Gorleston was assessed at £20 both in 1291 (fn. 31) and in 1306; (fn. 27) but it is not mentioned in 1535. The vicarage was assessed at £6 13s. 4d. in 1291, (fn. 31) but the Rental says it was worth £20 in 1306, (fn. 27) whilst in 1540–1 it was valued at £8 (fn. 32) only. The prior and convent presented the new vicar, who paid the prior and convent an annual rent of 15s. (fn. 27) The friars (as above) on account of their house having been built partly in Gorleston parish, also paid a yearly rent of 13s. 4d., (fn. 27) as agreed at the time of their foundation. The list of presentations by the prior and convent from 1335 is recorded in the porch of Gorleston church at the present time.
The prior and convent also held the manor of Gorleston by gift of the same king, as glebe of the churches of Yarmouth and Gorleston. The close of the manor, with orchard and grass land, was valued at 2s. a year; and 40 acres of demesne land at 60s. a year. (fn. 33) (fn. 34) Henry of Yarmouth paid 2s. rent for his windmill, and Lord John Bacun had been in the habit of paying the priory 1s. 6d. for the site of his mill; but Prior Hugh (fn. 35) had, without the convent, agreed with Bacun to forgo this 1s. 6d. during his life, and also to let him have an acre of the demesne lands in exchange for an acre of Bacun's land for the same term. (fn. 36)
The total value of Gorleston church and manor is given in the Rental as £23 4s. only, taking no account of the items £6 13s. 4d., 15s., and 13s. 4d. mentioned above.
In the Valor of 1535 the manor of Gorleston is valued at £8, but in the Ministers' Accounts of 1541, it is the farm (or lease) of the rectory there that is valued at £8. It consisted of glebe lands, tithes, and profits which were leased to Edward Weldon, 22nd August, 27 Henry VIII (1535).
In the year 1341 there was trouble between the parish church and the friary because there is a deed in the fragment of the Twyne MS., referred to above, (fn. 37) recording 'the citation by William de Bergeveny, S.T.D., regent at Oxford and others appointed judges delegate by the pope, of Dom Jacobus, perpetual vicar of Gorleston, and Thomas, son of Richard of K[ ], parish priest of the said church, to appear before the Bishop of Exeter in the church of St. Frideswide, Oxford, on the fourth law day after St. Luke, to answer to Robert, Prior of the Austin Friars of Little Yarmouth, on the matters which would be put forth against them'; but what those matters were we are not told.
In Lowestoft, variously called in the records Lowescost, Leystoke, Lowestofte, the prior and convent held the church by grant of Henry I, together with the vicarage. The church was valued, in 1291, at £4 13s. 4d. and the vicarage at £4 6s. 8d. In 1306 they were said to be worth £6 and £20 respectively, but in 1535 and 1541 (fn. 38) the church is not mentioned and the rectory is valued at £4 (fn. 39) only, at which sum there was a lease running at the time of the suppression granted by Prior Bolton. (fn. 40) The right of nomination at a vacancy was with the Bishop of Norwich, (fn. 41) the prior and convent presenting the nominee, (fn. 42) who made an oath of fealty like the vicar of Little Yarmouth. The vicar, besides the usual charges, repaired the books and ornaments and the chancel of the church.
There were no demesne lands, excepting where the tithe barn
stood. The prior and convent received 6s. 10d. for rent of the glebe
from the freemen and villeins there, besides 10 cocks and hens paid
yearly by the tenants, worth 1s. 3d. The amount of the church,
rent, and fowls is given in the Rental as £6 8s. 1d. Exact particulars
are given in the Rental of what each villein paid, thus:
Thomas son of Walter for a messuage and 5½ acres paid 1s. 5d. and 2 hens and 1 cock;
and so with the freemen:
John de Goseford and Henry Basset held 1 acre of land and they ought to pay 3½d. a year and 1 cock, 'but,' the Rental adds, 'they do nothing.'
William Reginald for ½ acre paid ½d. yearly and did fealty for it before Lords John and Robert Bacon, John de Gorleston, John May and William de Leegh, vicar of Gorleston and Lowestoft, but William said he did not know for what land he paid it.
When the villeins brought their cocks and hens to Lowestoft on St. Stephen's Day they were entitled to a meal of the lord and other customs, but they did no work. (fn. 43)
In Belton (Beleton), (fn. 46) about four miles to the south-west of Gorleston, the prior and convent held the church there according to the confirming charter of Henry III in the year 1229; (fn. 47) it is associated with the churches of Little Yarmouth, Gorleston, and Lowestoft, for which Alan de Stok paid 10 marks to St. Bartholomew's; (fn. 48) though in the Taxatio it is not marked as being annexed to any monastic house, neither is it mentioned in the Rental; but it appears by a Quare impedit (fn. 49) brought by the king against the Bishop of Norwich in the year 1345–6 that the prior had, in the reign of Edward I (1272–1307), alienated the advowson in mortmain without the king's licence to a predecessor of the bishop, and that therefore the right to present accrued to the king, (fn. 50) and thus was lost to the priory before the Rental was composed in 1306.
At Wenhaston (Wenlacston, (fn. 51) Wenhastone, (fn. 52), Wennachester, (fn. 53) Wennaxton (fn. 54) ), the prior and convent had the chapel of St. Bartholomew by grant of the ancestors of Geoffrey of Wenlacstone, (fn. 55) situated in his demesne lands. They had to find a chaplain to celebrate one day in every week.
The Wenhaston MS. in possession of St. Peter's Church there states that 'the chapell of Sainte bartholomew payeth in the daye of the solemnite of the aforesayd Saynte unto the chappelen of the mother church (St. Peter's) yerlly iiiis iiiid and the aforesayd Chappelane shall celebrate everie weke ons (once) there and shall take in the aforesayd solemne daye a sufficient candele to celebrate by the yere (but the prior of sainte bartholomue's shall ffynde vestimentes copes and an hanging lampe for to kepe the lyght) and shall uphoulde the chapel in all thyngs'.
Nothing was attached to the chapel (except the oblations made on St. Bartholomew's Day, which were worth 10s.) besides the salary of the chaplain and the expenses of the bailiff who came to collect the oblations. (fn. 51) This is from the Rental, otherwise it is mentioned only in the charter of 1 Richard I (1190), where it is stated that the chapel was by the gift of Geoffrey. (fn. 56)
The chapel was situated in Bartholomew Lane, Wenhaston, (fn. 57) but is now totally destroyed; though a field there is still called the 'chapel piece'. A sketch of the building made in the year 1629 was in 1894 in the possession of the late Rev. J. B. Clare, at that time vicar of Wenhaston.
The worth of this chapel and all the above churches and chapels in Suffolk is totalled in the Rental at this point at £40 12s. 1d., but it is impossible to say how the figures are arrived at. The chapel was allotted to the bailiff of the priory. At Wenhaston the prior and convent had, by gift of Geoffrey son of Ailwin, a moiety of the church there, for which the prior and convent of St. Mary's, Blythburgh, paid them 56s. 8d. as an annual pension payable half-yearly in the conventual church of Holy Trinity, Ipswich. (fn. 58)
We have already seen (fn. 59) that Prior Hugh, in the year 1287, had to take action, terminated by fine. In 1410 Prior John Watford, to enforce this annual payment, which was in arrears, had to issue a writ against the Prior of Blythburgh upon the fine, at which time the advowson of Wenhaston was valued at 40 marks. (fn. 60)
In the Taxatio of 1291 'a portion of the church of Wenhaston' is valued at £2 16s. 8d., and in the Valor of 1535 'the church of Wenhaston' is entered at 30s. only; but in the Ministers' Accounts of 1541, the monastery of Blythburgh having been suppressed and the pension extinguished, there is no entry. This pension of 56s. 8d. in the year 1306 went to the cellarer of the priory.
In Newport, (fn. 61) according to the Taxatio of 1291, the prior and convent had, in lands and rents, £6 0s. 1½d., but we have found no mention of this in the Rental, charters, or other records.
The Manor of Shortgrove (Sortegrave), which is in the parish of Newport, may be the lands referred to. Here the prior and convent held, according to the charter of Henry II, two hides by gift of Milo de Verdun and William de Nineris; (fn. 62) but according to the charter of Henry III they held lands and rents there of the fee of Henry de Merc and William de Verdun.
A fine, of the year 1226, (fn. 63) records an agreement concerning a carucate of land in Shortgrove, whereby Henry de Merc warranted the same to the prior and convent in frankalmoign as the prior had it of the gift of Ailtrobus de Merc, the father of Henry de Merc, whose heir he was, paying yearly certain gilt spurs or the sum of 6d. The prior was to receive the said Henry and his heirs into all benefits of the church of St. Bartholomew.
In 1306 this manor (fn. 64) was valued at £19 2s. 8½d. net a year, made up as follows:
|200 acres of arable land||12||0||0|
|The manor close with dovecot, orchard and pasture||10||0|
|6 acres of meadow||1||4||0|
|5 acres of pasture||15||0|
|Pasture for 100 sheep||10||0|
|Rent of assize from free tenants and villeins||2||9||1|
|Works of free tenants||1||16||0½|
|Rent for the view of frankpledge||2||0|
|Pleas and perquisites of the court||6||8|
|Less the following outgoings:|
|To Sir Reginald de Grey for the manor of Depden (fn. 65) (Deepedene) of 20 acres||3||6|
|To Robert Lenveyse for lands, etc., at Widdington||4||1|
|To the parish church of Newport for the lesser tithes by agreement with the prior and convent of St. Martin's le Grand, who owned the prebend and tithes||2||0|
|(Some other rent not detailed)||6|
In 1525, (fn. 66) the Manor of Shortgrove was valued at £10 only, at which sum, at the time of the suppression, there was a lease running of the mansion called 'Shortgrove Hall in the parish of Newporte and Wydyngton'. It had been granted by Prior Fuller, 20th July, 26 Henry VIII (1534) to John Wykham. (fn. 67)
The Rental sets out in detail the rents and services of the 11 freemen of the manor, and also of the 23 villeins; and these will be found in the rental in Appendix I. (fn. 68) The following are a few examples:
The master of the hospital of St. Leonard of Newport paid for a dyke, called Longmade dyke, 3d. a year. Stephen, a clerk of Newport, held 4 acres and paid 8s. a year, and owed suit at the view of frankpledge. (The word secta is written in the margin of the Rental in many cases, which implies that attendance was due at the manorial court.) Katharine Attehill paid 2s. a year for a messuage, and had to find a man for two days' harvesting.
Among the villeins or freemen holding in villeinage:
Adam son of Eustace held a messuage and paid only a capon a year. Martin Bercer, for a messuage of 3 acres, paid 3s. a year and 1 hen and 3 eggs, and had to find a labourer for 3 days' harvesting. Sabina le Gold held 2 messuages and ½ acre, and paid 3s. 8d., 1 hen, and 4½ eggs. Acins held 3 acres with a messuage, and paid 2s. 8d. a year, and with his co-owners he paid a hen at Christmas and 3½ eggs at Easter, and did 3 days' harvesting in the autumn. He also held another 3 acres and a messuage, for which he did one day's work a week, paid 3 eggs and found a labourer for 6 days' harvesting. He further held a piece of meadow for which he reaped half an acre of oats. When this man and his fellows mowed the prior's meadow, they were entitled to a breakfast of bread, cheese, and beer.
All the tenants who paid hens to the prior were entitled to have, for every 6 acres of harvesting, one acre of stubble of the lord; and for every 3 acres, half an acre of stubble. Those who did work during the whole year within the close of the manor were entitled to a loaf. The lord had to give the harvesters, during three days, one meal a day, with ale on one day and water on the others.
The total receivable from the manor was 50s. 1d. in rents; and 8 capons, 16 hens, and 50 eggs, worth then 3s. 2d.; 60 days' harvesting, besides the work done by the customary tenants at 1½d. each, worth 7s. 6d. The work of the customary tenants, besides autumn work, was worth, at 1½d. each, 15s. 5½d., and the autumn work, at 1½d. each, was worth 11s. The customary tenants also had to reap 2 acres of wheat and 2 of oats, which was worth 1s. 8d.
The customs of the villeins as detailed show that on the creation of a new prior it was their duty to inform him, as their lord, of the amount that each paid in rent or service. They had to redeem (by a fine) the ordination of their sons and the marriage of their daughters (debent redimere filios et filias suas ordinand' et maritand'), and they could only demise their tenement at the will of their lord. The lord could choose whether they did their work or paid money instead. There was a custom here among the freemen and villeins that no heriot (i.e. a tribute of the best beast payable on the death of a tenant) ought to be given on their death to the lord of the manor; and that a widow in villeinage held the tenement of the husband as long as she remained a widow and was guardian of her sons. The further acquisition, by the prior and convent in the year 1359, of the tenant's interest in a messuage and an acre of meadow in 'Shortgrove and Langley next Clavering', has already been referred to. (fn. 69) The manor of Shortgrove Hall was sold in April 1544 (fn. 70) by the king, with other property, to Edward Ebrington and Humphrey Metcalf.
At Chrishall about 7 miles to the west of Saffron Walden, the prior and convent possessed rents to the value of 21s.
At Birchanger, a hamlet about 2 miles south of Stanstead, they held rents amounting to 2s. only: this was in the year 1291, (fn. 71) but we have no record concerning either of the places last mentioned after that date.
At Finchingfield, about 8 miles north-east of Dunmow, the prior and convent held a tenement for which they received 7s. a year, (fn. 72) for which the bailiff of Shortgrove manor was accountable. It was obtained in the year 1239 from Henry de Merc in exchange for the advowson of the church of Little Bardfield, (fn. 73) as already stated.
At Langley (Laindon, (fn. 74) Langeleia, (fn. 75) Langeleg (fn. 76) ), in the north-west corner of the county on the border of Herts, the prior and convent held by gift of Robert Lebel, (fn. 75) Henry Cawesnefes, and of Cecily, daughter of Robert Bloet, and others, (fn. 74) the manor of Langley of the fee, in the year 1190, of Robert son of Roger, (fn. 75) and in the year 1253 of Robert son of Roger and John son of Robert, (fn. 77) and in 1306 of Lord Robert son of Roger, (fn. 76) by the service of 4s. 6d. Langley was part of the demesne of the manor of Clavering held direct from the king (in capite) by the same Robert.
In the same manor the prior and convent held lands called Eldfield from Richard de Kelshell by the service of one pound of cummin, worth 2d., for all land service.
In the same manor (a little to the south-west and over the border in Herts (fn. 78) ) they held lands in Meesden (Mesedon in Rental).
The manor of Langley was in the parish of Clavering, to the church of which the greater and lesser tithes were paid. They did not hold the view of frankpledge because the tenants were in the view at Clavering. The prior paid a rent for the manor of 5s. 8d. The clear annual value of the manor, at the time of the Rental, is given as £12 13s. 6½d.; in the Taxatio as only £2 0s. 6d.; in the Valor and Ministers' Accounts as £6, for which sum Prior Bolton had granted a 40 years' lease of the manor in 1530. (fn. 79) There were some 275 acres of land in all, besides the manor close with its orchard and grass land. The 21 free tenants held in demesne 5 messuages and 45½ acres, and the villeins 11 messuages and 54½ acres.
Full particulars concerning the holding of each tenant are set out in the Rental; for example:
William Everard held 4 acres and paid 1s. 4d. a year and one new ploughshare. Gilbert Scott paid 1d. a year for a right of way beyond the prior's lane. These and other tenants had to come or send an efficient substitute to make the prior's hay and cock it and stack it in the yard, and do a day's harvesting in the autumn; but the prior had to give them a meal of bread, meat, cheese, and 6d. for the service; also to feed the other labourers. Some of the tenants had to do two days' carting as far as London. The customs in the manor of Langley differed from those of Shortgrove to the extent that the tenants had to give a heriot on death to the lord, and they had not the custom of commuting their day's labour for money.
At the time of the suppression Langley Hall was held by Thomas Thorowgood by lease from Prior Bolton at £6 a year, the lease being renewed by Fuller in 1539 for a term of 40 years from Lady Day, 1541, (fn. 80) but in 1543 it was granted by the king to John Gate Esquire, (fn. 81) who, in 1550, alienated it to William Bradbury Esquire. (fn. 82)
At Elmdon (Elmedon), (fn. 83) in the extreme north-west corner of the county, near Little Chesterford, the prior and convent received 5s. a year from Philip Attecoise, and 1s. 10d. from Philip Welston, for certain lands and tenements there, (fn. 84) for which the bailiff of Langley was answerable.
At Theydon Bois (Taiden, (fn. 85) Theyden de Bosco, (fn. 86) Teyden Bosco, (fn. 87) Thoydon (fn. 88) ), south of Epping, the prior and convent had the presentation (fn. 89) to the parish church by the gift of William de Bosco. (fn. 76) The glebe was, until the year 1335, held by the rector with the church. The prior was entitled to receive 2 marks yearly for the glebe from the rector, but as certain lands of the demesne of the manor of Theydon Bois (held by the Abbot of Waltham by grant of Henry I) had for a long time lain uncultivated, it was agreed (says the Rental of 1306), (fn. 90) between the prior and convent and Master William de Norton (the then rector) that he should only pay one mark yearly until the lands should be cultivated. At this time the church was valued at £5 6s. 8d.; in 1291 it had been assessed at £4 13s. 4d. In the year 1335, however, the prior and convent obtained licence from the king to appropriate the church, (fn. 91) whereby the glebe and tithes which had been the rector's came to them. In the year 1349 they were given 33 acres in Theydon Bois, amongst other lands, by Edmund de Grymesby, the king's clerk, for the endowment of a chantry at St. Bartholomew's, to celebrate for him every year on the anniversary of his death. (fn. 92) Ten years later, in 1359, they were given by Richard de Shamelesford, clerk, a messuage, a toft, 91 acres in Theydon Bois, with a lane called Pakeswey, and 2s. 6d. rent. Before the king gave his licence for this grant, inquisition was made, by which we learn that the lands were poor, part lying in the forest, and so together were only worth 27s. a year. (fn. 93)
In 1526, Prior Bolton granted a lease of the rectory and its appurtenances to Juliana Fenrother at a rent of £4 a year. (fn. 94) In the following year he granted her the right to cut down and retain all the wood, except the great trees, for two years for the payment of £2, on condition that she did not damage the young springs, for security against which she had to deposit 5 marks. (fn. 95) In 1535 the valuation was £4, at which figure Prior Fuller, in 1538, granted a lease of the rectory to Edward Elrington, the Chief Butler of England to Edward VI, Queen Mary, and Queen Elizabeth. In 1541, in the Ministers' Accounts, the same value appears, from which record we learn that the rectory consisted of lands, tenements, rents, services, meadows, woods, tithes, fruits, oblations, &c. In 1543 the king granted the tithes and in April 1544 the rectory and advowson of the vicarage (fn. 96) to the same Edward Elrington. (fn. 97) The cellarer in the year 1306 received one mark of the rent from Theydon Bois.
At Bobbingworth, about 8 miles to the north-east of Theydon Bois near Chipping Ongar, the prior and convent held a messuage and 10 acres, for which they received 5s. a year; and another messuage and 4 acres, for which they received 3s. a year. They were assessed at 8s. in 1291. (fn. 98) In 1535 these messuages were not mentioned, so they had probably been disposed of. These rents also went to the cellarer.
In Danbury (Danewebuy, (fn. 99) Daningbyry, (fn. 100) Danynggebiry, (fn. 100) Danningebere, (fn. 101) Daingbere (fn. 102) ), about 4 miles east of Chelmsford, the prior and convent held the advowson of one moiety of the church by the gift of William de Mandeville, the 3rd Earl of Essex, who died in 1189. (fn. 103) The benefice was divided in ancient times because of the fertility of the fields, the size of the parish, and the number of the parishioners. (fn. 104) Two rectors were instituted and inducted as to two benefices, the prior and convent being the patrons of the one moiety and laymen of the other. In the year 1234 there was, apparently, a disagreement concerning the presentation, when Geoffrey de Heyno (fn. 105) remised and quit-claimed to Prior Gerard all his right and claim in the advowson, the prior receiving Geoffrey and his heirs into all benefactions and prayers of the church. There are several records of the prior and convent presenting to their moiety of the benefice: thus, in 1318, they presented Walter de Draitone in succession to William de Casbellcoy resigned. (fn. 106) On June 24th, 1324, they presented Nicholas de Usflet, and on the 29th November following they presented John de Harewes; and on the 22nd July, 1326, William de Drayton. (fn. 107) In 1413 they presented William Goodefader by exchange. (fn. 108) In 1440, the prior and convent's moiety being void by death of R. Smith, the Bishop of London, with the consent of the other rector and at the wish of Robert Darcy, Esq., united the two moieties into one rectory, the patronage being with the Darcys, whilst the prior and convent continued to receive 20s. a year from the rector. In 1428 there is a record of this payment in the Feudal Aids. (fn. 109) It continued to be received until the suppression, for it appears in the Valor and in the Computi Ministrorum, (fn. 110) but, as this 20s. was received of the abbot of the monastery of Beeleigh, Essex, it lapsed at the suppression of that monastery. The patronage went from the Darcys to the Windhams, and after the suppression to Sir Walter Mildmay. It was part of the income of the cellarer of the priory.
In Bradfield (Bradefeud, (fn. 111) Bradefeld, (fn. 112) Bradfeld (fn. 113) ), about 8 miles from Harwich, and by the River Stour, the prior and convent held, by gift of William de Rames, the church with the chapel of Manningtree, some 2 miles away. They held in Bradfield 16 messuages and 111 acres of land which their villeins held of them in villeinage by services fully set out in the Rental, (fn. 114) which messuages and land (except one messuage and 7 acres of land which were in the fee of the church which John de Balton held) were held of Lord William de Rames (Reymis) (fn. 115) in frankalmoign, then of the heirs of John de Brokesbourgh, lord of the village of Bradfield. The prior and convent also had the advowson of the church (St. John Baptist and St. Lawrence), which was valued, with the portion of the vicarage, at £8. (fn. 116) They paid to the procurations of the Archdeacon of Colchester 6s. 8d. It was for the prior and convent to roof the chancel when necessary, to repair the books, and to find the ornaments of the parish church. Other ordinary charges, as to repairing and roofing the chapel of Manningtree, (fn. 117) and as to finding books and ornaments there, belonged entirely to the vicarage. The vicarage, to which the prior and convent presented, was assessed at 6 marks, but worth, in 1307, 10 marks, including a messuage with 16 acres. (fn. 118)
In the year 1224 there had been a dispute—already referred to (fn. 119) —regarding the advowson of the church, when William de Rames (Rennes), grandson of the former William, claimed it. The jury found that Walter, the last priest, held the church by the gift of the Bishop of London by the authority of the council and not on the presentation of the prior; though it had been decided at a recent assize at Chelmsford that the presentation belonged to the prior; but as the jury now found that Adam, the predecessor of Walter, had been appointed by William de Rames (Ramis), grandfather of the then William, it was adjudged that William de Rames should recover his presentation and the Bishop of London be instructed to admit his clerk. In the year 1262, the prior and convent (fn. 120) recovered the presentation by fine (fn. 121) from one Hubert de Royby, who acknowledged the right to the advowson to belong to the prior; they also recovered the tenement the prior held in the town, and the right to common pasture in the heath, in frankalmoign, for which agreement the prior admitted Hubert and his heirs to all benefactions and prayers made in the church for ever. (fn. 122)
The earliest record extant of presentation by the prior and convent is on the 16th April, 1327, when, on the death of Sir Edmund, (fn. 123) they presented William de Tannour of Stowmarket, from whom an oath of residence was exacted; they continued to present until the suppression. (fn. 124)
We have already referred to Prior Gerard disposing of a messuage and a carucate of land in Bradfield to the above William de Rames (Reymes) in the year 1238. (fn. 125)
The prior and convent held the view of frankpledge in Bradfield of all their tenants. They paid 2s. yearly for the guardianship of the fort of Colchester, which the villeins of the prior had to collect among themselves and pay to the chief lord over the fort.
The net value of the possessions in Bradfield is given in the Rental as £11 2s. 4d. The names of 18 tenants and the rents they paid in the year 1307 are given in full. (fn. 126) The villeins had all the customs held by those of Shortgrove, excepting that they were not accustomed to do any work in Bradfield, but they were expected to give a heriot at death.
In the years 1303, 1346, and 1428, it is recorded in the Feudal Aids that the prior held a quarter of a knight's fee in Bradfield. (fn. 127) In 1535 the vicarage was valued at £5 6s. 8d., (fn. 128) for which sum Prior Fuller granted a lease of it to Ambrose Woolley in 1538. (fn. 129)
At Colchester (Colecestria, (fn. 130) Colecestre (fn. 131) ) the prior and convent held four tenements, the total rents of which amounted to 10s. 5d. The value in the Taxatio is 5s. 7d. (fn. 130) It is not mentioned in the Valor.
At Oslakester Milo de Verdun gave two parts of the tithes with all the movable property of his domains. (fn. 132) This place may have been in Essex, since Milo de Verdun gave two hides of land in Shortgrove, as we have previously seen, (fn. 133) but we have been unable to locate it.
At Malden (Maldon (fn. 134) ), at the mouth of the Blackwater River, the prior and convent held 6s. of rent of certain tenements (specified in the Rental) (fn. 135) which Oswald de Maldon gave to them, and which was confirmed to them by charter (fn. 136) of King Henry II. (fn. 137) Malden is not mentioned in Henry III's charter of 1253, but in 1267 (fn. 138) the prior had to claim against a tenant and his wife, that they should do him the accustomed services for their free tenement in Malden, which we may assume was one of the above.
This rent was allotted to the cellarer's office. It is not included in the Valor of 1535.
In Walthamstow (Welcomstowe, (fn. 139) Welconstowe (fn. 140) ) the prior and convent held 7 acres of meadow land of Robert de Tony at a rent of ½d. It was valued at 28s. in the Rental, and at 21s. in the Taxatio. (fn. 139) We do not find it in any of the charters. In the Valor of 1535 it was valued at 20s., and at the same in the Ministers' Accounts of 1541, where it is described as '6 acres of meadow in Walcomstowe Meade'.
The church of Bardfield (Berdefeld) (fn. 141) was, in the year 1176, one of the possessions of the prior and convent, as of the gift of Atrobus de Merc, (fn. 141) but it was exchanged by fine, as we have seen, (fn. 142) in the year 1239 by Gerard the prior with Henry de Merc (son of Atrobus), saving the ancient pension of the church, for 7s. rent in Finchingfield (as above) from Ralph de Herst. For this reason the church does not appear in Henry III's charter of 1253 or in the Rental.
In Mentmore (Montemore, (fn. 143) Mentmor, (fn. 144) Mentmore (fn. 145) ), about 8 miles north-east of Aylesbury, the prior and convent held by gift of Hugh Buisel (or Bussel) a moiety of the church and 1½ hides of land in the same parish; (fn. 144) by gift of William son of Milo the other moiety of the same church; (fn. 146) and by gift of Walter 'de Dunn' a part which Robert de Cestresham granted them of his tithe at Grove (Gravam), (fn. 147) a small place annexed to the parish of Mentmore soon after the Conquest. (fn. 148)
Hugh Bussel, the donor of the first moiety of the church, was the grandson of Warine Bussel, Baron of Penwortham, Lancashire, who founded Penwortham Priory in the time of William the Conqueror. William son of Milo may possibly have been the William son of Milo who, in the year 1234, as a canon of the house, acted as Prior Gerard's attorney in an action against Richard de Ydebir (fn. 149) (Hydebyr or Ideburg).
One of the moieties of the advowson of the church was confirmed to the prior and convent by fine on the 3rd February, 1202, by Roger de Argenton and Matilda his wife, and it was in consideration of this that (fn. 150) the prior and convent admitted Roger and Matilda and their heirs to all benefits and prayers made in the church; (fn. 151) later, (fn. 139) in 1206, they gave to the prior and convent a rent charge of 2s. a year on a messuage in Mentmore. (fn. 152) The prior and convent continued to present to the church until the suppression in the year 1539. In the year 1234, when they presented Gerard the Chaplain, there is a note in the register of the institution by Hugh de Wells at Lincoln, (fn. 153) that the vicarage consisted of the altarage and of the tithes of half a hide of land at Broke; but that by an assize before the king's justices the prior and convent had lost the dwelling-house belonging to the vicarage. The vicarage at that time was worth ordinarily 4 marks a year, the vicar paying synodals only. In the rental of 1306 the vicarage of the church was assessed at 40s., and was worth 10 marks. The church was assessed at £9: in the Taxatio of 1291 at £8: (fn. 154) in the Valor of 1535 the rectory and tithes were valued at £18, with a deduction of £2 13s. to the Vicar of Mentmore for the upkeep of the vicarage. It was the obligation of the prior and convent to roof the chancel, to find the church ornaments, and to pay the procuration fees (7s. 7¾d.). (fn. 155)
The prior and convent also held the manor of Mentmore, together with 4 virgates of land, of Ralph le Poer by the service, in the year 1306, of 2s. a year, and 2s. for hidage for all land service. (fn. 156) In 1241 as already seen, (fn. 157) there had been a dispute between the prior and convent and Ralph le Poer, the prior's cattle being distrained because he had not done homage and suit of court to Ralph, and on account of reapings which Ralph demanded concerning a hide of land in Mentmore, held by the prior and convent of Ralph. These customs and services the prior did not acknowledge; there was therefore a lawsuit, with the result that an agreement was arrived at whereby Ralph granted the prior the hide of land on payment of 12d. a year and doing the service of the king, whilst the prior remised the damages he had had by the taking and detaining of his beasts. (fn. 158) In the same manor the prior and convent held half a virgate of land of Ellis (Eya) de Hydeburgh (fn. 156) at a yearly rental of 2d. for hidage for all service.
In the year 1306, the extent of the manor was 160 acres of arable land in domain, worth then £8 a year; the close, orchard, garden, and yard, worth 1s. a year; 16 acres of meadow and pasture, 24s. a year; pasturage for 10 cows, 10s. a year; feed for 100 sheep, 6s. 8d. a year; rents of assize, 12s. 11d.; greater tithes, £13 6s. 8d. (fn. 159)
Henry III's charter of 1253 (fn. 160) states that their lands were held in fee of Ralph le Poer and of Walter son of Hugh Bussel (Hugh had given a moiety of the church), of Nicholas le Dun (probably a relation of Walter le Dun who gave them tithes at Grove), and of Richard de Ideburg (with whom there was the suit in 1234).
This Richard de Ideburg (fn. 161) granted the prior and convent, in the year 1236, 3 acres of land and a rood of meadow, in exchange for half a virgate of land in Mentmore. (fn. 162) There was a similar fine concerning the same lands, and at this time between Prior Gerard and Ingenulf de Suleby and Benselina his wife, who were apparently jointly interested parties in the exchange. (fn. 161)
The prior and convent did not hold the view of frankpledge in the manor, because the manor was within the liberty of Eyton, where the tenants were in the view. (fn. 163)
The tenants of the manor, and the rents they paid, are set out in full in the Rental. (fn. 163) Several of the benefactors of the priory named above (or their descendants) were tenants of the prior; thus: Hugh Argenteim held a messuage and a virgate of land; Ellis (Elyas) de Hydebyrg, son of Richard de Hydebyrg, held a messuage; and William le Dun held half an acre of land and meadow in Leteburne.
In the year 1341, (fn. 164) the question arose as to whether the prior and convent should not pay fifteenths with the laity for this property in Mentmore; but it was found, on reference to the Taxatio Ecclesiastica of 1291, that their lands and rents were there taxed at 29s. 10d. (fn. 165) as spiritualities, and that therefore they had always paid tenths with the clergy and not fifteenths with the laity, and an exemplification of a certificate of the barons of the exchequer to this effect was granted. (fn. 166)
In the Rental (fn. 167) the net value of the land, &c., of the manor is given as £23 2s., and of the rents 12s. 11d.
The manor was apparently alienated by the prior and convent before the suppression, hence it does not appear in the Valor. Lipscombe, in his history of Buckinghamshire, (fn. 168) states that the manor passed from the family of Bussel to the Zouches of Harringworth before the year 1352, making no mention of its earlier possession by St. Bartholomew's. After the battle of Bosworth Field, when John Lord Zouch was attainted, he says the manor escheated to the king (Henry VII), who granted it to Sir Reginald Bray, to whom, in consequence, 2s. a year rent from the rectory was paid.
The rectory was valued in 1535 (fn. 169) and in 1541 (fn. 170) at £18. It had been let to Thomas Wygge for 40 years from 1533 at that sum. The advowson of the vicarage was granted in March 1545 to Sir William Butte. (fn. 171)
At Hockliffe (Hocclive, (fn. 172) Hokline, Hokcline (fn. 173) ) the prior and convent had two virgates of land which the master and brethren of the hospital of St. John of Hockliffe held of them at a yearly rent of 10s., at which sum it was valued in the Taxatio in 1291. These particulars are from the rental of 1306, but there is no reference to the place in any of the charters or in the Valor.
At Tottenham (Totenham (fn. 174) (fn. 175) ) the prior and convent held an acre of meadow called Micheley by gift of Bartholomew son of Geoffrey de Cornhill in frankalmoign, worth 4s. And in the same place they held two acres, by gift of Gilbert son of William of Tottenham, at Michelheye in Brademade in frankalmoign, worth 8s., at 4s. an acre. The total value in 1306 was therefore 12s.; in 1291 it had been valued at 10s. This property is not mentioned in the charters or in the Valor, but at the time of the suppression there was a lease running, granted by Prior Bolton, of lands 'at Totenham and Edelmeton' at a rent of 6s. 8d., which probably refers to this land. (fn. 176)
At Edmonton (Edelinton, (fn. 177) Edelmeton (fn. 178) ) the prior and convent held 3 roods of meadow at Stonygate, the gift of Ralph Heyron, in frankalmoign, valued in 1306 at 3s. a year. This land is not referred to except in the Bodleian Rental and in the lease in connexion with Tottenham referred to above. (fn. 178)
½ acre at Stonyherst by gift of Ralph son of Ralph Heyron, worth 2s. a year. ½ acre at Popelers by gift of William Quarell, worth 2s. a year. 1 acre at Milnemers by gift of William de Gyvewell, worth 4s. a year. 1 acre at Hewenwere at Wildemers, by gift of Richard de Forde, worth 4s. a year. ½ acre at Wilemers (sic) at Barbeflete, by gift of John son of Ascon, worth 2s. a year.
The total value of these meadows in Tottenham, Edmonton, and Enfield was 29s., and was appropriated to the cellarer.
At Charlton (Cherbuton, (fn. 181) Cherlinter, (fn. 182) Cherdington, (fn. 183) Chardington, (fn. 184) Shardington (fn. 185) ), a manor in the parish of Sunbury-on-Thames, the prior and convent held the greater tithes coming from the demesne lands of the Prior of Merton, rector of the same church, originally by gift of Alan Dapiper (fn. 183) (Dapifer (fn. 181) (fn. 182) ) of one carucate of land. It was assessed, says the Bodleian Rental, at 22s. 4½d., and was worth yearly, in 1306, 26s. 8d. In the Valor (fn. 184) Chardington is valued at 10s. only, which from the Ministers' Accounts of 1541 was the value of certain lands there let on lease to an auditor of the king. The 26s. 8d. was, in 1306, also given to the cellarer.
At Sunbury-on-Thames the prior and convent received a portion from the church valued at 2 marks. The church was valued at 20 marks. There are records of this in the years 1291 (fn. 186) and 1428, (fn. 187) but at no other dates.
In Islington (Iseldun, (fn. 188) Iseldon, (fn. 189) Iseldone (fn. 190) ) the prior and convent were granted, before the year 1176, ten shillings' worth (solidatas) (fn. 188) (of rent) by Ralph de Berners, who had also given them half a hide at Peltend (fn. 188) (a place we have been unable to locate). Here also the same Ralph gave them a manor of about 194 acres, afterwards known as Canonbury. The first mention of this grant occurs in Henry III's charter of 1253, (fn. 190) in which the king confirms all the lands and rents, with their appurtenances, which they had in the village of 'Iseldone'. As Ralph de Berners died in the year 1297, (fn. 191) we may reasonably assume that the grant was made between (say) 1240 and 1253.
In the Rental of 1306 the estate is thus referred to: (fn. 193)
'There the prior and convent have a manor called Iseldon which they hold of Edmund de Berners (the son of Ralph) (fn. 192) for 4s. payable at Michaelmas and Easter for all service except the outside service due therefrom, to wit, 2s. 9¾d. payable yearly to the Bishop of London by which the said Edmund holds for guarding the castle of Stertford (Bishop's Stortford), and the manor is held of the said Edmund for the eighth part of a knight's fee, and they have no view there because all their tenants are in the view of the Bishop of London at Stebenhede' (Stepney).
But it is recorded that Ralph de Berners at his death was seized of the manor of Iseldon, held under the Bishop of London by a like service. And this manor, known later as Berners or Bernersbury (now Barnsbury), continued in the family for several generations; we may therefore assume that Ralph divided the manor, both as regards the lands and the manorial rights (a division possible up to, but not after, the year 1285). The estate acquired by the Berners family had belonged to the Bishops of London from before the Conquest; for William I restored to the canons of St. Paul's lands in Islington of which it was said they had been unjustly deprived. (fn. 194)
Canonbury.—The name of 'Canonesbury' occurs in an inquisition (fn. 195) in the year 1373, in which it is stated that Ralph de Berners gave, in addition to Canonbury, 'a messuage called Cotelers'; the name also occurs in the Valor of 1535, and was doubtless given in consequence of the manor being a possession of the canons of St. Bartholomew's, the name of Canons in Stanmore being probably acquired in the same way.
It will be seen by the particulars below that there was a manorhouse here in the year 1306, possibly 'the messuage called Cotelers' above, and we may assume that it stood on the site of the present house, known as Canonbury Tower, built by Prior Bolton. Bolton's rebus does not occur in the house, but it does so in one of the wooden spandrels of a door inside the school-house which is at the south-east angle of the quadrangle. (fn. 196) It also occurs carved on a large stone on the front of No. 4 Alwyne Villas, and can be seen from the road. (fn. 197) This was one of the two octagonal garden houses which stood at the south-east and south-west corners of the garden wall shown in old prints of the south side of Canonbury Tower. (fn. 198) The garden house at the south-west corner is covered with stucco.
The extent of the manor is fully set out in the Rental, and may be summarized thus (giving a contrast to the Islington of to-day):
|Arable land, 157½ acres @ 6d.||3||18||6 (fn. 199)|
|The close or garden with the curtilage or land near the house||2||0|
|The herbage, 3 acres 3 roods @ 3s. an acre||11||3|
|Pasturage for plough horses and cows beside the roads round the corn 4 acres @ 2s.||8||0|
|Several pastures for sheep 30 acres @ 5d. (fn. 200)||15||0|
|Pasture in several arable fields, in all sufficient for 26 sheep||5||0|
|Rent of assize||1||11||9|
|Court pleas and perquisites||3||0|
|Works of customary tenants||5||1|
|One capon and nine hens||1||1½|
|Less 4s. and 2s. 9¾d. paid for the manor||6||9¾|
Thomas Sefoule was the only free tenant, and he held a messuage and 39 acres of land in demesne by the service of one-sixteenth part of a knight's fee: he paid 10s. 6d. yearly. There were 18 other tenants, one of whom, Thomas le Woder, held 2 messuages and 3 roods of land. He paid 9d. a year and 1 hen at Christmas and ought to do 2 days' weeding and 2 days' autumn reaping.
Richard de la Pyry held 20 acres of land called Randulphffesfeld for a term of 15 years, by demise of the prior and cellarer by court roll, for which he paid 7s. 6d. a year. This was apportioned to the bailiff.
The prior and convent also had there a windmill, worth 40s. a year, which was apportioned to the cellarer.
In the Taxatio of 1291, the lands, rent, and meadows in 'Iseldon' were valued at £1 15s. a year; (fn. 201) in the Rental, as above, at £7 12s. 10¾d.; in the Valor of 1535, at £26 8s. 7d.; in the Ministers' Accounts of 1541, at £24 16s. 11d., with the remark that they were granted to Thomas Cromwell, late Earl of Essex, attainted of high treason. Henry VIII was desirous of acquiring the house and manor of Canon bury some time before the suppression (as already seen (fn. 202) ). Prior Bolton granted him a lease of the house and garden before the year 1531. (fn. 203) Prior Fuller granted a lease of Canonbury and Cutlers to Thomas Cromwell in 1532 (2nd September), (fn. 204) and among his 'Revenues' in 1536 mention is made of the rent paid to the Prior of St. Bartholomew's for the 'farm of Canonbury'. (fn. 205) In the catalogue of documents in Cromwell's possession in the year 1533, occurs 'a copy of the indenture between my master and Giles Heron for his lease at Canbery'. (fn. 206) In 1539 there occurs in Cromwell's Accounts, 'Abbot of Waltham for purchase of Canbury and other lands £296', (fn. 207) only four months before the suppression. And yet immediately after the suppression, in October of 1539, the king granted the manor to Thomas Cromwell; but on his execution in the following July it again came into the king's hands. In 1541 an annuity of £20 a year was granted from the manor to Anne of Cleves. When Edward VI came to the throne he sold it to Dudley, Earl of Warwick, who, as Duke of Northumberland, was executed by Queen Mary in 1553. Mary then granted the manor to Lord Wentworth, who sold it, in 1570, to Sir John Spenser. Lord Compton was in occupation there in 1605. A date in Arabic numerals, 156—, much weather-worn, occurs on a stone let into the wall on the garden side of the schoolhouse and probably records work by Lord Wentworth; whilst the date 159-, in similar characters in a finely moulded ceiling on the first floor, would record the work of Sir John Spenser. From 1627–35 it was rented by Lord Keeper Coventry. The Earl of Denbigh died there in 1685, as did Samuel Humphreys, the poet, in 1737, and the author of Chambers's Encyclopaedia in 1740. Oliver Goldsmith lodged there in 1762, and it was there he wrote The Vicar of Wakefield. Canonbury Tower underwent a complete restoration in the year 1907–8 by the Marquess of Northampton, when it was formed into a Social Club and local Museum for his tenants and their friends in Canonbury, Islington, and Clerkenwell.
The usual tradition of a subterranean passage from Canonbury to Smithfield in this case probably arose from the existence of spacious brick arched conduits through which the water-pipes were at one time carried to the priory. (fn. 208)
In addition to Canonbury, the prior and convent acquired, in the year 1334, another messuage and 110 acres of land in Islington and Kentish Town, which latter is in the parish of St. Pancras, by grant from Henry le Heyward of West Smithfield and Roger de Creton, chaplain, to find a chaplain to celebrate daily for the soul of Prior John de Kensington. (fn. 209) Of this land, 54 acres were held of the priory by the service of 10s. 6d. yearly, 52 acres were held of Henry Bydyk by the service of 26s. yearly, and 4 acres of John de Berners by the service of 9d. yearly. Henry le Heyward held from the Bishop of London, who, with John de Berners, held from the king.
In the year 1349 a grant of land in Acton, made by Edmund de Grymesby, included 3 acres in Islington and 5 acres in Kentish Town; (fn. 210) and in 1525 Prior Bolton granted to Richard Hawkes of London a lease of lands called Iremongers in the parish of St. Pancras, Kentish Town, (fn. 211) which probably relates to the same.
In Portpool (Portepole), (fn. 212) in the parish of St. Pancras, where Gray's Inn now stands, the prior and convent held land granted them in the year 1315 by John de Grey, who gave 30 acres of land, 2 acres of meadow, and 10s. rent in Kentish Town and St. Andrew's, Holborn, to found a chantry in the chapel of his manor of Portpool, to be served by a chaplain from St. Bartholomew's. (fn. 213) These possessions were valued at £10 in the year 1535, (fn. 212) but out of that had to be paid £6 13s. 4d. for the chaplain, and 20s. yearly to the master and benchers of Gray's Inn. In the Ministers' Accounts of 1541 the gross amount appears as £9 6s. 8d., where the following account is given.
John Archer, the receiver of the lord the king, 'renders account of £6 13s. 4d. of the farm of 2 fields late in the tenure of William Huddeson in the parish of St. Pancras, Co. Middlesex, containing 26 acres demised to Richard Hudson and his assigns by indenture dated 14th January, 24 Henry VIII (1533), for 41 years' (payable Lady Day and Michaelmas), the tenant 'to scour and amend the hedges and ditches when necessary' … 'And' (he renders account) 'of 53s. 4d. of the farm of one field late in the tenure of Robert Brynett in the parish of St. Pancras, containing 10 acres demised to Henry Whare by indenture dated 8th February, 22 Henry VIII (1531), for 20 years.'
Also in the parish of St. Pancras, in the year 1530, Henry VIII granted licence to the prior and convent to acquire 4 acres of land, called 'les Pytts', (fn. 214) and also granted licence to the prior and convent 'of the Carthusian house of the Salutation of the Mother of God' to alienate to the prior and convent of St. Bartholomew's 7 acres of land in a field called Lenisdown, in the parish of St. Pancras.
At Northall (adjoining Harrow) the master and brethren of St. Thomas of Acon held of the prior and convent one virgate of land called Lachefeldis, opposite to the manor of the same brethren, for which they paid annually 6s. 6d., and this was allotted to the cellarer. (fn. 215)
At Hendon, at the time of the Rental (1306), Robert Robert (fn. 216) held a messuage and half a virgate of land of the prior and convent, paying therefor 4s. yearly; which was also taken by the cellarer. (fn. 217) We have no other record of this possession.
But the Valor of 1535 and the Ministers' Accounts of 1541 value the possession at Hendon at £6 13s. 4d., and from the latter we learn that the manor called 'Renters' (or 'Romers') is referred to. This possession, as previously mentioned, (fn. 218) consisted in all of 318 acres, of which 150 were in Hendon and 168 in Great Stanmore. It was the grant, as to 298 acres, of Hugh de la More of Carleton, and as to 20 acres in Great Stanmore of John of Affebregg. Whether all this land was included in the manor of Renters does not appear.
An inquisition (fn. 219) was held in West Smithfield on the 9th May, 1358, to inquire whether it would be any damage to the king to allow these two grants to be made, and as the jury found that it would not be so, licence to grant was given by the king on the 10th March, 1359. The jury found that 1 messuage, 130 acres of land, 10 acres meadow, 4 acres pasture, 6 acres wood, and 11s. 4d. of rent in Hendon were held of the Abbot of Westminster by the service of 5s. 4d. yearly, and doing suit at the abbot's court at Westminster at Michaelmas and Easter; that the messuage was worth 6d. yearly, the land 10s. 10d. (not more, because the land was stony and could not be sown), the pasture thereof 1d., the meadow 8s. 4d., the 4 acres of pasture 12d., and the wood 6d. (not more, because it was cut that year and could not be cut oftener than once in twenty years, and then was worth 4d. an acre).
They found that the other messuage in Great Stanmore and 90 acres of land there, 5 acres of meadow, 55 acres of wood, and 18 acres of furze, were held of the Abbot of St. Albans by the service of 13s. 4d. yearly. The messuage was worth 6d.; the land 7s. 6d.; the meadow 4s. 2d.; the wood 3s., and the furze 9d.
The manor of Renters was let on lease, dated 30th June, 1537, to Roger Elderich for a term of 60 years at a yearly rent of £6 13s. 4d., and the following particulars are given of what was comprised in the lease when particulars for a grant were made for the king in 1543. (fn. 220) 'One field called Highfield, a field and a croft called Kechin croft, another called the Long Croft, and a meadow called the prior's meadow; a croft called Renters Rede, a small croft east of Braunt (or Braynte) lane, a field called Bedford (or Hodford) Field, a croft called Akenhege, three fields called Carter's field, a croft called Barne (or Berne) croft, a field called the Plain (or Playne) field, another called Water forrow, another called Grove field, a croft called Letter land, and a croft on the south part of Burlane.' (fn. 221) The manor was in February 1543 leased by the king to Sir John Williams and Anthony Stringer in fee farm, and in 1548 it was alienated by the king's licence to Sir Roger Cholmeley, the founder of Highgate Grammar School.
The name of 'Renters' survives in Renters Hill in the neighbourhood of Golders Green, and 'Carter's field' is still so called: it is on the south-west side of Golders Green Road.
In Stanmore Magna or Great Stanmore (Stanmere in all the ancient records) the prior and convent also held the manor, which consisted of 73¼ acres and 4s. 1¾d. rent in Harrow (Harwe), the grant of David de Wolloure. An inquisition was held (fn. 222) at West Smithfield, on the 22nd March, 1360/1, (fn. 223) to inquire what damage it would be to the king to allow this grant of the manor of Great Stanmore and 73¼ acres to be made. The property was then held by Maud (Matilda), who was the wife of Simon Franceis, for her life, of the said David with remainder to David. The jury found that it would be no damage to the king to allow the grant, which was to provide for certain chaplains to celebrate daily in the priory for all Christian souls (deceased) for ever. They found that the manor was held of the Abbot of St. Albans by the service of 10 marks and 8d. yearly, and was worth nothing beyond the rent; that the land in Harrow was held of the Archbishop of Canterbury as his manor of Harrow; that the land was worth 11s. 2d. for pasture; and the meadow was worth 2s. only because it lay in the common field and could not be mown except at the time the field was sown. The king, therefore, on the 16th January, 1362, (fn. 224) gave licence for the grant to be made and to the priory to hold after the death of Matilda.
This manor, and also that of Wellhall, Hertfordshire, were held of the Abbot of St. Albans by certain rent and service and also by the service of doubling the rent of the manors as a relief after the death of every tenant; but, as the manors were now held by the prior and convent as a corporation, there was no tenant to die (i.e. they were in mortmain), and the abbot stood to lose very considerably. He therefore, in the year 1392, obtained from the king licence to receive on every voidance of the priory 5 marks for the manor of Great Stanmore and 24s. for that of Wellhall; for which licence the abbot paid 20s. to the king. (fn. 225)
The manor was valued in the year 1535 at £20, subject to an annual payment to the Abbot of St. Albans of £6 13s. 4d. (fn. 226) On the 10th April, 29 Henry VIII (1538), it was demised for fifteen years to one Geoffrey Chambers, (fn. 227) at a rent of £13 13s. 4d. free from this payment to St. Albans; and at this sum it appears in the Ministers' Accounts of 1541. (fn. 212)
The manor so let at that time consisted of a tenement with a cottage near the cross in Stanmore called 'a bruckhouse'; a tenement called 'Waxewell (fn. 228) or Page' lying upon the hill with gardens, orchards, and pastures; two closes of arable land adjoining the fields called the 'Common Field', and the '20 acre Field', adjoining the field called 'Staples' in Stanmore Parva.
There were also waters and fisheries on 'Bushes Heath' near 'Pary Wood' in Stanmore Parva, and other lands in the parishes of Stanmore Magna and 'Harough (Harrow) upon the Hill'. (fn. 229)
In the year 1547 the manor was granted with others to Sir Peter Gamboa, a Spaniard, for his services in the king's wars. (fn. 230)
At Stanmore Parva, or Stanmore the Less, or Little Stanmore, now called Whitchurch, (fn. 231) by Edgware, the prior and convent held the manor of 'Stanmore Parva', with the advowson of the church of St. Lawrence, (fn. 232) by gift of Roger de Ramis (fn. 233) (or Rames). These were held 'of the king in chief by service of one knight's fee, (fn. 234) when it happened'; but the Rental (fn. 235) says they ought to be quit therefrom, to wit of scutage, (fn. 236) by charters of the kings.
This gift by Roger de Ramis must have been made at some period between the time of the foundation of the monastery in 1123 and of the confirming charter of cir. 1176. Prior Gerard, in the year 1238, obtained further from William de Reymes, great-grandson of Roger, the reversion of all the land which Egidea de Reymes, William's widowed mother, held in dower in Stanmore Parva. This was effected by exchange for 1 messuage and 1 carucate of land in Bradfield, Essex, and a payment by the prior of £42 sterling. (fn. 237)
This grant by William is described as being in demesnes, rents, homages, reliefs, wards, services in villeinage, escheats, woods, meadows, and feedings. Three years later, viz. in 1241, Egidea had married again one William Hannselin, and had begun to commit waste on her dower lands; (fn. 238) whereon Prior Gerard made complaint both of this and of the sale of lands and woods; there was therefore a plea between them in court when William Hannselin and Egidea acknowledged that the lands and woods were the right of the prior. Whereupon it was agreed that William and Egidea should hold them of the prior during Egidea's life, paying one pound of cummin or 2d. yearly; and if William survived he was to have one of the tenements during his life, paying 2d. yearly: for this agreement the prior also had to give William and Egidea 40s. sterling. (fn. 239)
As already stated, (fn. 240) in 1293 the prior was served with a writ of Quo Warranto concerning his claim to view of frankpledge, and to assize of bread and beer, and infangtheof and outfangtheof and gallows in the manor of Little Stanmore, the result of which was to confirm the rights of the prior as to the first two items, but the last three were found to belong to the king.
In the same year as said (fn. 241) the prior had to defend an action regarding his land in the manor. There was another landowner, Henry Boycoynte (Bequeynte), who, on the marriage of Isabel, sister of Henry III, with the Emperor Frederick, paid half a knight's fee for his lands in Stanmore Parva (fn. 242) held of the barony of William de Reymes. (fn. 243) This man had three granddaughters who, as heiresses, claimed against the prior 24 acres of land and 3 acres of meadow in Stanmore Parva, which they said belonged to their grandfather and when he died descended to their father Ralph. The prior contended that Ralph had an elder brother Henry, who entered into possession at his father's death, but this the granddaughters denied. On this issue the case went to a jury, but the sisters withdrew, leaving the prior in possession. (fn. 244)
The conditions in the year 1306 are fully set out in the Rental. (fn. 245) The prior and convent held the view of frankpledge of the whole of the village: they held it yearly on the Thursday before Whitsunday, when they paid the king 2s. for the view.
The advowson of the church was assessed at 40s., the value being 20s. yearly, besides the service of the chaplain, the procuration of the archdeacon, and the greater and lesser tithes, which the prior and convent had not to pay because it was their own parish.
This income, together with that from a windmill in the same place, went to the cellarer.
The total value of the lands of the manor, besides the church and the mill, was, after paying 2s. for the view, £10 10s. 6d., for which the bailiff was responsible. The extent of these lands as given in the Rental is: 156 acres arable at 3d. an acre; the close of the manor with the courtyard and herbage (1s.); 56½ acres of wood and underwood at 3d. an acre; 54 acres pasturage at Lugpyt and Pyrifield, for cows and cart-horses at 2d. an acre; 113 acres pasturage at Grymedich at 2d. an acre; making 379½ acres in all, besides separate fields and commons for 140 sheep.
There were in all 44 tenants, the majority of whom held in villeinage. The terms on which they all held are set out in the Rental, (fn. 246) some being interesting. John Pers held a messuage and 15 acres, for which he paid 11d. a year. He had to go with two men to the great autumn reaping, and to see that the men did their work well; as, if done badly, he himself would be amerced on their account, if the lord so willed. He was entitled to food three times a day: bread, cheese, and beer for breakfast; bread, beer, potage, and two dishes, meat and cheese, at 'none', (fn. 247) and in common with the other reapers at vespers. The villeins had all the same customs as those of the manor of Langley (Langele), with the exception that the widows could not hold for their lives more than a third part of the tenements of which their husbands died seized. The total rent paid by the tenants was £3 7s. 11d. In addition they gave 2 hens and 1 cock, worth 4d.
The total of works of customary tenants at weeding was 22 at ½d. each; at gathering hay the same; at harrowing 11 at ½d. each; at reaping 26 at 1d. each; and at two great reaping days of the lord and lady 28; 'but', says the Rental, 'they are worth nothing because they take more than the value of the works '. The total value of the works and the hens was thus 4s. 9½d.
After the Rental was made out the prior and convent acquired still larger grants of land in Little Stanmore; thus in the year 1314 Edward II granted licence for the alienation in mortmain to them, by William Pypard of Little Stanmore, of a messuage, 135 acres of land, 12 acres of meadow, and 35 acres of wood in Little Stanmore, (fn. 248) by fine of £10.
In the year 1316 a similar licence was granted to John de Barnevyle, to grant to the prior and convent a messuage, 180 acres of land, 8 acres of meadow, 10 acres of wood, and 7s. 6d. rent in Little Stanmore, by fine of 5 marks. (fn. 249)
In the year 1330 the king gave licence to the Prior of St. John of Jerusalem, Clerkenwell, to grant to the prior and convent 6 acres of meadow in Little Stanmore in exchange for a rent and a release, as related in a previous chapter. (fn. 250) And a further licence was granted in the following year (1331) for alienation in mortmain to the prior and convent, by John son of John le Blount of ' Bickeleswade ' (Biggleswade), of 30 acres of land and 4 acres of meadow in Little Stanmore for the purpose (fn. 251) of finding wax lights to burn at daily celebrations.
In the year 1335 the king (Edward III) granted a similar licence to Henry le Heyward and Roger de Cretone concerning a messuage, 120 acres of land, 8 acres of meadow, 30 acres of wood, and 4s. 6d. rent in Little Stanmore. (fn. 251) (fn. 252)
The total of these additional grants is 578 acres, which, with the total given in the Rental, make 957½ acres in all in Little Stanmore, the largest of all the properties of the monastery.
In the year 1291 the lands, meadows, and rents here were valued at £4 7s. 4d., and the church at £2. (fn. 253) In 1306 the various valuations amounted to £17 9s. 8½d. (fn. 254) In 1535 the total value, including woods and perquisites, was £84 16s. 11d., (fn. 255) and in 1541 £97 19s. 4d. (fn. 256)
The last valuation gives, besides the names of the leaseholders, the terms and dates of their leases and the nature of their holdings, which seem to be of sufficient interest to give here.
Some reference must here be made to the subsequent history of the church and Manor of Canons.
The property (fn. 257) was granted by the name of the Manors of Canons
and 'Wimborough', in Whitchurch, to Hugh Losse, Esq., (fn. 258) whose descendant,
Sir Hugh Losse, sold it to Sir Thomas Lake in the year
1604. The manor continued in the family of Lake until the marriage
of James Brydges, Esq., afterwards Duke of Chandos, with Mary,
daughter and heir of Sir Thomas Lake. The Duke of Chandos, in
the year 1712, built on the estate a magnificent mansion at a cost,
with the furniture, of £200,000. Pope's satire on false taste was
supposed to have been directed against Canons and its owner.
The suffering eye inverted nature sees,
Trees cut like statues, statues thick as trees.
. . . . . . .
And now the chapel's silver bell you hear
That summons you to all the pride of pray'r.
. . . . . . .
But hark ! the chiming clocks to dinner call,
A hundred footsteps grace the marble hall.'
At the death of the duke the mansion, being too expensive to keep up, was taken down and the material sold by auction. (fn. 259)
The church of St. Lawrence, which was neither a rectory nor a vicarage, but a donative or curacy, (fn. 260) was rebuilt by the duke in 1715, but not completed until 1720.
Handel was organist here from 1718 to 1721, and chapel master to the duke, (fn. 261) with whom he often stayed at Canons. And here he is said to have composed his Esther for the re-opening service of this church, which took place on August 29th, 1720. At this time Dr. Randall, of Cambridge, with Beard and Savage, were in the choir, and Dr. Pepusch composed the morning and evening services. Handel's 'Harmonious Blacksmith' is said to have been composed in the village. William Powel was the blacksmith and the parish clerk. He was buried in the churchyard of St. Lawrence, with the inscription over his grave: ' Sacred to the memory of William Powel, the Harmonious Blacksmith, died February 27th, 1780, aged about 78.'
The Family of Rames or Rennes or Reymes.
(They held great possessions in Essex, which constituted a barony.) (fn. 262)
|Roger de Rames,||or an ancestor, (fn. 263) acquired the manor of Bradfield, Essex.||cir.||1066|
|He held the manor of Stanmore at the time of Domesday. (fn. 262)||1080–1086|
|Robert de Rames||gave the church of St. Bartholomew, Tydulfnestre (Elstree), (fn. 264) to the prior and convent.||ante||1176|
|Roger de Ramis||gave the church of St. Lawrence, Stanmore, (fn. 264) and was father of William (fn. 265).||1176|
|William de Reymes m. Sarah.||conceded certain property in Edgware (fn. 264) (Eggeswere) to the prior and convent.||ante||1176|
|He gave the church of Bradfield (fn. 264) (Bradefeld) with the chapel of Mannester (Manningtree).||ante||1176|
|Henry Bocointe paid a mark into the Exchequer that he might implead William de Reymes for the manor of Edgware. (fn. 266)||1171|
|He (William) granted to Adam, son of Ralph son of Adam, half his land in Edgware and Stanmore which Ralph, Adam's father, held of Roger, William's father; witnessed by Prior Roger (1176) and a Richard de Rames (possibly a son). (fn. 265) William's wife was named Sarah. (fn. 265)||1176–1189|
|?Richard m. Egidea||who on the death of her first husband married Wm. Hannselin (fn. 267) and made waste of her dower lands.||cir.||1241|
|William de Rames||described as grandson of William: successfully claimed the advowson of the church of Bradfield. (fn. 268)||1224|
|Described as great-grandson of Roger, exchanged with Prior Gerard the reversion of the land in Little Stanmore which his mother Egidea held in dower for land in Bradfield.||(fn. 269) 1238|
At Edgware (Eggeswere, (fn. 270) Heggwere (fn. 271) ) there is no mention of the possessions of the prior and convent either in the Taxatio, Rental, Valor, or Ministers' Accounts; but in his charter cir. 1176 Henry II confirmed to the prior and convent ' whatever William de Ramis, or Adam Buchiunte (Bocoynte), or Earl Patrick, (fn. 272) or Countess Ela have conceded to them in the village of Eggeswere and at Tidulnestre' (fn. 270) (Elstree, Herts).
Lysons says the first mention of Edgware he found was in the year 1171, (fn. 273) when Henry Bocoynte paid one mark that he might implead William de Reymes for the manor. Soon after he says it belonged to Ela Countess of Salisbury, when, from the above record, she evidently made some small grant in Edgware and Elstree to the priory.
About the same time (cir. 1176), Prior Roger, who we have assumed succeeded Prior Thomas on his death in 1174, appears (fn. 274) as a witness to a grant by William de Rames to Adam (Bocoynte) of half his land in Edgware and Stanmore, (fn. 275) which was on the opposite side of the main road which passes through Edgware to that of the canons of St. Bartholomew's. (fn. 276)
In the year 1202, another Henry Buchiunte (for he is described as 'the clerk son of Humphrey Bucunte ') sold by fine to Prior Richard a virgate of land in ' Heggwere ' for which the prior paid two marks in silver. (fn. 277)
There is also a record of an exchange by the prior and convent of 2 acres of arable land for the ditch made from Adam son of Roger atte Marsh's land round the grove at 'Egeswere'. (fn. 278) And in the year 1374, the king (Edward III) granted licence for the gift to the prior and convent of 2 messuages and 2 acres of land in ' Eggeswere and Iddestre '. (fn. 279)
Why none of this small property, like Elstree, is mentioned in the Valor or in the Ministers' Accounts, is not clear, unless it be that the property, including the manor of Elstree (which is described as in the township of Edgware), was alienated before the suppression; but no record in confirmation of this has been met with, and at the time of the suppression there was a lease of lands in Edgware, granted by Prior Bolton for £6 13s. 4d., and another by Prior Fuller for £15. (fn. 280) But in October 1545 numerous messuages, cottages, lands, rents, and services in 'Edgwarth' and Stanmore Parva, and the farm of Wimborrowe in Little Stanmore, were sold to Hugh Losse and Agnes his wife, (fn. 281) by the king.
At Fulpashe, according to the Valor, the prior and convent had possessions valued at £4. We have been unable to locate this place, but in the Ministers' Accounts (fn. 282) it is stated that the rent and farm there had been granted to 'Sir Thomas Crumwell, Kt., late Earl of Essex of high treason attainted', so no value given. (It is the following entry in the Valor to Charlton and is included among the Middlesex possessions.)
Elstree is now in Hertfordshire, just over the Middlesex border, on the road that runs through Edgware and Little Stanmore, to which Elstree adjoins. (The ancient names were Tithufes, in the tenth century; (fn. 283) Tydulfnestre in 1176; (fn. 284) Tydalnestre in 1187 (fn. 285); Tidulnestre (fn. 286) in 1190 (fn. 286) and 1253; (fn. 287) Idelstre in 1306, (fn. 288) and Ilstrey in the sixteenth century.) (fn. 283) As it is stated in the Rental that the place was in the same county and hundred as Little Stanmore (i. e. in Co. Middlesex and Gore hundred) and that it was in the township of Edgware; and further, as the grants of possessions in Elstree were in the year 1176 (fn. 284) included in those of Edgware, it will be convenient to describe the Elstree possessions here.
The Rental says, 'There the prior and convent have a manor called Idelstre, of which manor they hold the site and 50 acres of land, 9½ acres of wood, and 6 acres of meadow, which are in the township (villata) of Edgware, in frankalmoign, by grant of Philip, (fn. 289) formerly Count of Sarum, now of the Countess of Lincoln, (fn. 290) who is the heiress of that count. And they hold in respect of the said manor of the fee of Little Stanmore from our Lord the King by military service 150 acres of land, 3 acres of wood, and 4 acres of meadow' (&c.). The three tenants held in domain 5 messuages and 13½ acres of the fee of Edgware and were in the view of the prior and convent at Little Stanmore. The total value is given at 73s. 10d. There is no mention of this manor, either in the Valor or in the Ministers' Accounts; but there is a record (fn. 291) that Pope Clement, in the year 1188, granted to the kitchen of St. Albans the whole land of Elstree and the wood of Boreham for the feeding of the swine; which land St. Albans retained until the suppression.
In addition to the manor, the charters of cir. 1176, 1187, 1190, and 1253, all confirm to the prior and convent, 'by gift of Robert de Ramis, the church of St. Bartholomew of Tydulfnestre with all appurtenances'. There is no record of this church or chapel in Elstree: the parish church there of St. Nicholas was part of the possessions of the abbot and convent of St. Albans. Also there is no mention of it in the Rental under Elstree, but under Aldenham, some three to four miles north-west, of Elstree, mention is made of a payment, as stated below, of '2s. 6d. a year on the feast of St. Bartholomew at the chapel of Idelstre'. There seems to be some confusion concerning these Elstree possessions, which we cannot explain.
Aldenham (Aldnam) is also included in the Rental as belonging to Middlesex, though really it is in Hertfordshire. There is no mention of the place in the early charters, nor in the Taxatio of 1291, nor yet in the Valor, nor in the Ministers' Accounts. The Rental of 1306 thus describes the possessions there: 'There they have 2 crofts, lying in the parish of Bushey, and they pay 2s. 6d. a year on the feast of St. Bartholomew at the chapel of Idelstre'. There were 8 tenants (named), who paid in all 7s. 7d. rent.
'At the same place the said prior and convent have one chapel within their court, to which oblations come on St. Bartholomew's Day, and they are worth 24s. a year', which sum was taken by the cellarer.
In Acton (Co. Middlesex) the prior and convent acquired by grant from Adam de Herewynton, the king's clerk, in the year 1328 (fn. 292) (i. e. after the date of the Rental) land, &c., already referred to, (fn. 293) namely 1 messuage, 1½ carucates of land; 7½ acres of meadow; 60 acres of pasture; 40 acres of wood; 4s. 1d. rent, and the rent of 1 lb. of pepper. At that time the value was as declared at the inquisition, (fn. 294) of the messuage, 2s. a year; of 270 acres of land, 2d. per acre beyond what was due to the chief lord; the meadows, 1s. an acre; the pasture, 3d. per acre; the 40 acres of wood, 6s. 8d. only, because the wood was young.
In the year 1374 their possessions here were still further increased by the grant by John Chishull, chaplain, and others, (fn. 297) of a toft, 116 acres of land; 5 acres of meadow; and 6 acres of wood in Acton.
Prior Bolton, on the 25th May, 1528, granted a lease of the manor of Acton for 40 years, from Michaelmas 1536, to Geoffrey Wharton, for £17, and of another portion to the same man for £2 6s. 8d., (fn. 298) and these were running at the time of the suppression.
In 1534 Prior Fuller and the convent granted an annuity of 4 marks of rent, issuing out of the manor of Acton, to one Humphrey Barrett. (fn. 299)
In the Valor (fn. 300) the manor of Acton is only valued at £15 3s. 4d., but in the Ministers' Accounts at £17, where the above lease to Geoffrey Wharton, clerk, is quoted as including all the lands, meadows, feedings, &c., to the same manor belonging, except and reserved all those trees now growing or being near the aforesaid manor, pro umbracione of the manor. (fn. 301) The prior held half a knight's fee here in the year 1428. (fn. 302)
The manor of Acton was sold with other property in May 1543 to John Russell, K.G., Lord Russell, and Keeper of the Privy Seal.
At Amwell (fn. 303) (Emewell, (fn. 304) Amewell (fn. 305) ), between Hertford and St. Margarets, the prior and convent had, of the gift of Alexander de Swereford, (fn. 305) 5 acres of meadow called Brademede, and one in the fee of the Abbot of Waltham; and 1 acre by the town of Hertford, in a meadow called Bassemede in Wydemeryse, all held of Philip de Hertford in frankalmoign, in the fee of Philip Basse. The value of the 5 acres at 3s. an acre was 15s., which was taken by the cellarer.
This small possession does not appear in the Valor or in the Ministers' Accounts.
Amwell, originally Emma's Well, named, it is said, after Emma the wife of Cnut, was one of the springs used by Sir Hugh Middleton, in 1613, for the New River to supply London with pure water.
At Pont'tegule (Pontetegula, (fn. 306) Pons de Thele, Punt de Tyull, Pons Tegule, Pons Tegleri; modern name Stanstead St. Margaret (fn. 307) ) in the same hundred (of Hertford) William de Goldington held of the prior and convent a granary for which he paid 1s. 6d. a year, and this went to the cellarer. (fn. 308)
At Hertford, in the same hundred and in the Bishopric of Lincoln, the prior and convent had rents from tenants by grant of Alexander de Swereford, (fn. 309) (fn. 310) Canon of St. Paul's (described in the Rental as Magister Alexander de Scherford), in fee of the king, the Abbot of Waltham, and John de la Mare. Fifteen tenants were outside the town and did homage at Amwell: 22 tenants were within the town and did no homage. One of the tenants outside the town, for 6 acres of land, paid 1 penny and 1 pair of gauntlets. The total rent from the 37 tenants was, in the year 1306, £1 13s. 4d. and 3 pairs of gauntlets. (fn. 310)
At one of the many inquisitions held at the direction of Edward I on the death of his father, the jury found that the prior held here one carucate of land by grant of 'Alexander de Suereford' in prejudice of the king. (fn. 311)
At 'Gormeleg' in the same hundred the prior and convent held 2 acres of meadow of Lord Richard de Perers in frankalmoign, worth 8s. a year, which went to the cellarer. (fn. 312) As this place does not appear in any of the other records, it may be a slip of the scribe of the Rental for Wormley, which is in the Hertford hundred. (fn. 313)
At Tewin (Thewynge, (fn. 314) Tywinge, (fn. 315) Twenge, (fn. 316) Tiwynge, (fn. 317) Tywinge, (fn. 318) Tewynge, (fn. 319) Tewinge (fn. 320) ), in the hundred of Hertford and bishopric of Lincoln (some three miles to the west of Hertford), the prior and convent held the manor of Tewin and the advowson of the church there, which together formed one of the more important possessions of the monastery.
It is first mentioned in Henry III's charter of 1253, (fn. 321) wherein he confirms 'all the lands and rents with their appurtenances which they have in the township of Tywinge by gift of Alexander de Swereford, sometime treasurer of St. Paul's, London, of the fee of Godfrey de Tywinge, son of Richard de Tywinge, and John, son of John, son of Vitalis, together with the church of the same township'. Alexander de Swereford (who was also a baron of the exchequer and may have been son of the Master Richard Shoreford) probably made his grant, as already explained, (fn. 322) about the year 1242. At any rate he put the prior and convent in possession before his death (fn. 323) in the year 1246. At that time Godfrey de Tewinge, who held a half knight's fee in Tewin, confirmed Alexander's grant of lands and of the advowson of the church to the prior, Peter le Duc, and his church for ever, paying therefor yearly one penny at Easter, and for this confirmation the prior gave Godfrey 5 marks in silver. (fn. 324)
In the year 1266–7 some dispute arose concerning a holding of the convent in Tewin. John, son of Godfrey de Tewinge, thereupon brought an action of novel disseisin (practically an action of ejectment) against Godfrey de Tewinge (apparently his father) and the prior of St. Bartholomew's. (fn. 325) The verdict of the jury was in favour of John, who took possession and subsequently granted the holding to Eleanor, the queen of Henry III. The subsequent action of Prior Hugh to regain possession in the year 1269 has already been fully related. (fn. 326)
In the year 1273, in addition to the lands granted by Alexander de Swereford, Prior Hugh acquired by fine (fn. 327) from Symon Tayllepast 1 messuage and 214 acres of land in Tewin and 5 acres of meadow in Amwell which Symon first held of the prior. For this fine the prior agreed to pay yearly to Symon for his life 10 marks of silver with right of distraint in case of non-payment, but to be quit of the payment on Symon's death. (fn. 327)
In the year 1278 (fn. 328) his claim to view of frankpledge in a tenement of Tewin was not allowed by the jury, who recommended that the king should recover the view.
In 1279 Prior Hugh was again in conflict with John son of Godfrey de Tewinge; (fn. 329) this time concerning the payment of 2s. a year due to the king for 180 acres of land in Tewin. On this occasion the prior came off best, as already seen. (fn. 322)
In 1306 the Bodleian Rental thus describes (translated) the possessions at that date:
'There the said prior and convent have a manor called Tywinge
which they hold of John son of Godfrey de Tywinge in frankalmoign
and the said John ought to warrant that manor as against Lord
Edmund Comyn, of whom the said John holds it for the fourth part
of a knight's fee. In the same manor the said prior and convent
hold a field, called Chelestresfeld, where there are 16 acres of land,
of the Prior of Widmundel (Wymondley), paying therefor yearly 2d.
at Michaelmas and Easter, for all service. In the same manor they
hold a field called Baldwynesfeld, where are 26 acres of land and
2 acres of wood; paying therefor yearly to lord William Mulksope,
of whom it is held, 4s. 3d. for all land service. In the same manor
they hold one messuage and half a virgate of land in Locklege, which
Robert Kyffeit holds of them, and another half virgate of land which
other tenants hold of them in Lockele of Ada de Maundevile;
paying therefor 5s. yearly for all service. In the same manor they
hold one acre of meadow of John Godfrey; paying therefor Id.
yearly for all service. In the same manor they have the view of
frankpledge of all their tenants, and they give nothing to the
king for their view. And the advowson of the church of the same
township belongs to the said manor, which is assessed at £10 and
is worth £20, to which church they present at the time of a vacancy.
The amount of rent payable therefrom is 9s. 5d. Thereof Robert
Kiffeit is appointed to pay 5s. to Ada Mandevile.'
. . . . . . . . . .
'And they have in the same manor in all 199 acres and a watermill, worth altogether clear £9 6s. 3d.'
Then follow the names of 21 tenants in Tewin and 8 in Lockeleye, with particulars of their rents, &c. (fn. 331)
'Memorandum that all the aforesaid tenants are free and have free customs, except that John Gounild, the serf, and Robert Kyffeyte hold in villeinage.'
Subsequent to the date of the rental the prior and convent added further to their holdings in Tewin.
In the year 1342 (fn. 332) the prior and convent acquired by gift of John Darcy le Cosyn (fn. 333) 200 acres of land, 8 acres of meadow, 6 acres of wood, and 38s. rent, in Tewin, Hertingfordbury, and Panshanger. The inquisition held showed that 180 acres were held of Sir William de Lodewyk, Kt., who held from William de Botereans and Muriel his wife in her right, and they held from the king in chief as parcel of the manor of Little Berkhampstead.
Ten acres in Hertingfordbury were held of William de Newcastle and Alice his wife in her right, who held of Richard Talbot, lord of Herting fordbury, and he of the king in chief as parcel of the manor of Hertingfordbury. The other 10 acres were held of the Prior of Wylemondale (Wymondley), and he held of Richard Talebot aforesaid. For this grant the king gave licence three days later, on the 29th August. (fn. 334)
In the year 1347 (fn. 335) they acquired by gift of Richard de Birton and Roger de Creton (fn. 336) 2 messuages and a carucate of land and 34 acres and 16s. rent in Tewin. At the inquisition it was shown that 1 messuage and 65 acres of the said carucate were held of Roger de Luda, who held of the heirs of Edmund Comyn, chevalier, as of the manor of 'Sencampe', and the heirs held of the king in chief. The residue of the premises was held of the prior of Wymondley, who held of Richard Talbot, chevalier, as of the manor of 'Hertfordingebury', and he of the king in chief. Much of the land was poor and stony and part uncultivated. The total net value was declared to be worth £2 12s. 9d. a year only. For this grant the licence of the king was given a month later, (fn. 337) where the yearly value was £1 16s. 9d.
In the year 1359 (fn. 338) (fn. 339) the prior and convent acquired by gift, of Robert de Thorpe and Master Roger Kempele, 16½ acres in Tewin. The inquisition showed that 34 acres were held of Henry Melksop; 4 acres of John Colyn, for 4d. yearly, and the service of finding one lamp burning in the church of Tewin; 39¾ acres were held of Smithfield priory; and 2 acres of Ralph Rolf. The total value was only 2s. 6d. a year clear. Licence was granted by the king on the 10th March following. (fn. 340)
In the year 1377 they acquired by gift of John Chishull, clerk, and John Mirfeld, (fn. 341) 27s. 5½d. rents and one rose in Tewin; and of John Chishull alone, 186½ acres and 5d. rent in Tewin and Hilwen, Dacheworth and Knebworth (places near); and by gift of both of them the reversion of the other manor of Tewin (fn. 342) after the death of Joan, who was widow of John Spendelove. The inquisition showed that 184½ acres were held of the priory by the service of 3s. yearly; and the manor and the residue of Sir William de Morlee, marshal of Ireland, as of his manor of Walkerne. The total value was £4 clear. Licence to grant (fn. 343) was given by the king on the 27th May.
In the year 1532 a lease of the manor of Tewin for 61 years was granted by Prior Fuller to John North, otherwise John Parsonage, at a yearly rent of £20, he doing all the repairs to houses and buildings. (fn. 344) In 1535 (fn. 345) the possessions of the monastery in lands and rents in Tewin were valued on the basis of this lease at £20 a year. The value of the wood is given separately at 20s. and the perquisites on an average at 11s. 4d. a year.
In 1541 the valuation was the same, viz. £20, (fn. 346) but it included all woods and underwood, lands, meadows, and pastures, all the rents of assize, warren of coney, &c., and the advowson of the church.
In 1544 the manor of Tewin and the advowson of the church were sold with other property to John Cock of Broxbourne, Herts. (fn. 347)
In Shenley (Schenle (fn. 348) ), about 5 miles to the north of Elstree, the prior and convent held the manor of Holmes, also called Canon Holmes. (fn. 349) It was the gift of Adam de Somery and Saer, son of Henry, (fn. 350) 'for which they had to find two canons to celebrate there for ever for the soul of Adam, his ancestors and descendants'. In the manor, in the year 1306, (fn. 351) they held 51 acres by knight service, and 9 acres of the manor of Shenley next the White Way, called Neleslond; also 7 acres of pasture called the Hoke. They paid ½d. a year for having a way by the field of Henry de Durehem. They also paid 5s. a year to the mother-church of Shenley for a chantry and a bell there. They did not hold the view of frankpledge because their tenants were in the view of Shenley and with Thomas de Musham. There were in demesne 244 acres in all, and pasturage for 100 sheep. There also appertained to the manor in London in the parish of St. Nicholas Shambles 20s. a year from a messuage with 4 shops. The total clear value of the manor was £8 2s. 9½d., but the Rental states the prior and convent made no profit out of it because they had to pay more. It was granted after the suppression to one John Brockett.
In the year 1291 the yearly value of the lands belonging to the priory of St. Bartholomew in Shenley was 10s. (fn. 352) In the year 1512 Prior Bolton granted a lease of the manor to Sir John Cutts for £4 13s. 4d. (fn. 353) In 1533 Prior Fuller granted a lease of the same to Robert and William Basse (fn. 354) for the same sum, at which amount it was valued in 1535, (fn. 355) and also in 1541, (fn. 356) when the Ministers' Accounts said Cutts' lease was still running.
In 1543 it was sold by Sir Edward North, treasurer of the Augmentations, to Nicholas Bristow.
The Manor of Wellhall or Walhale (fn. 357) was given to the prior and convent by John Mirfield the physician and by John Harpelsfeld in the year 1392. (fn. 358) The date being later than that of the Rental accounts for its not being there mentioned. Cussans says it is an estate of 400 acres, the greater part of which is in the parish of Aldenham. (fn. 359) The inquisition held at Barnet on the 16th September, 1392, (fn. 357) only refers to 162 acres and various rents, viz., 'The site of the manor, 86 acres of land, 12 acres of meadow, 2½ acres of wood, and 14s. 1d. rent, and a rent of 2 capons in the vills of Parksokne and Watford.' They were held of the Abbot of St. Albans by knight service for 24s. 2d. a year. The value was returned at 13s. 4d. yearly. Other parcels of the manor were 60 acres of land, 1½ acres of wood, a rent of 31s. and 1 lb. of cummin in Aldenham. These were held of the Abbot of Westminster by 6s. 8d. rent, and the yearly value was then 6s. 8d. beyond reprises. (fn. 360)
It was valued in 1535, also in 1541, at £4 13s. 4d., at which rent it was demised to William Sampson by indenture 20th April, 28 Henry VIII (1537), for 70 years, (fn. 361) but in 1544 it was sold with other property to Edward Ebrington and Humphrey Metcalf. (fn. 362) It is described as in the parish of St. Stephen, Co. Herts. (i. e. St. Stephen, St. Albans).
At Meesden (Mesdon), (fn. 363) a small village in the north-east of the county, not far from Clavering in Essex, the prior and convent held, in the year 1291, some land and meadows of the heir of Dionisius Lord Montchesney (de Monte Canisio) assessed at 7s. 6d.; (fn. 364) but no further record has been found concerning them.
Chauncy states (fn. 365) that the manor of Ayot St. Lawrence was held by the prior and convent by the gift of Henry I, but no evidence has been found in support of this statement; on the contrary, it has been shown that the manor was held by the Mandevilles from the year 1086 until it passed to Mary de Bohun, Queen of Henry IV. In 1525 it had descended to Henry Courtenay, Marquis of Exeter, who was beheaded in 1539, and so came into the hands of the king, who, in 1543, granted it to John Brockett and two others, together with the manor of Canon Holmes, (fn. 366) as stated above, p. 363.
At Hemel Hempstead (between St. Albans and Berkhampstead) the prior and convent at one time held the advowson of the church (dedicated in honour of 'the Precious Blood of Jesus Christ'), now St. Mary's, in that place, but of whose gift does not appear. It is, however, recorded that, in the year 1201, they gave King John 200 marks for the confirmation of the grant. (fn. 367) The church is not mentioned in Henry III's charter of 1253, though it must have been in their possession at that time. In 1323 John de Pekesden released the church for 60 marks to the rector of Assherigge. (fn. 368)