The Burton cartulary: Folios 81-91

Pages 77-86

Staffordshire Historical Collections, Vol. 5 Part 1. Originally published by Staffordshire Record Society, London, 1884.

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In this section

Folios 81 and 82.

Contain an account of the acquisition of their land in Adulvistre (Austrey) in Warwickshire. It is headed, Quo modo terra quam habemus in Adulvistriâ de dono Margaretæ de Nerbone ad ipsam pervenit et quomodo servitium unius virgatæ terræ quam tenuit Philippus filius Symonis pervenit ad Abbatem. As this account was copied by Dugdale, and used by him in the "History of Warwicshire," an abstract only of it in English is given here. It states that William son of Hugh had issue Hugh son of William, who succeeded to the inheritance of his father, and married Hawise de Traci, and died without issue. After his death Hawise held all Aldulvistre in dower, i.e., the land which Thomas de Clinton and Margaret de Nerbone afterwards held. The before-mentioned Hugh had given three acres of arable land and a meadow in Adulvistre to Richard de Stapilton the son of Reginald in fee and inheritance, and Richard gave this land to Symon Cuttepurs and his heirs. Thomas de Stapilton the son of Robert gave the homage and service of Philip fitz Symon for the same tenement to the monastery in free alms, and Philip performed homage to the Abbot. And it is said (dicitur) that the before-mentioned Hawise enfeoffed the Abbess of Polesworth, Robert de Overtun, and William de Montegomery in the tenements which they held in Aldulvistre. (fn. 1) This Hugh son of William gave to Eudo de Hulenhale a virgate of land in Aldulvistre for 3d. annually. Eudo gave it to William the Clerk of Aldulvistre for a rent of 10s. annually, and to the capital lord 3d. annually. Henry de Hulenhale, the son of Eudo, remitted to Symon son of William the Clerk 9s. and 10d. of the rent of the said virgate, and newly enfeoffed the same Symon in the same virgate of land for a rent of 2s. (sic) to himself and 3d. to the capital lord. This Henry gave the said service of 2d. (sic) of Symon son of William to Richard de Kynton; Richard de Kynton conceded the said virgate of land to the said Symon for a rent of 2d. to himself and heirs, and to the capital lord 3d.

When the partition was made of the manor of Aldulvistre between Thomas de Klynton and Matilda the daughter of William son of Hugh, the homage and service of the said Symon fell to the purparty of Matilda. After the death of Symon, Margaret the daughter of Matilda had Symon's horse with its trappings as a heriot, and the wardship of the land, till Philip son of Symon performed homage. Richard son of Richard de Kynton gave to the Abbot of Burton the homage and service of the said Philip for the said virgate of land.

The said William son of Hugh had issue Richard de Sanford, Margaret, and Matildis. Richard succeeded here to his brother by inheritance, and married Matildis the daughter of Ralph Mausard, and died without issue. After his death Matildis his widow held Aldulvistre in dower. Margaret married Osbert de Klintone, who had issue by her Osbert, who had issue Thomas, who had issue Thomas, John, Osbert, and James. Thomas son of Osbert gave to Osbert his son all the tenement he held in Aldulvistre together with the advowson of the Church, for a rent of 1d. annually. Osbert son of Thomas gave to the Abbot and Church of Burton the advowson, with the messuage which Richard Bulloc formerly held; and Thomas the father of Osbert confirmed this charter of Osbert his son; and by another charter the said Thomas aud Osbert admitted they had received 78 marks for a renunciation of a writ of last presentation and all claim in the said advowson, and this charter was read in full county of Warwick before W. de Morteyn then Sheriff, and in the presence of Thomas and Osbert; and the same charter was read in the presence of Thomas and Osbert at the Hundred Court of Humelfort (sic), and a memorandum made under the seal of the Bailiff of the Hundred. It was read also in full chapter of Arden (in pleno capitulo de Ardena), in the presence of Magister Andrew the then official, and a fine was also levied respecting the same advowson and messuage between the Abbot and Osbert in the King's Court.

After this Thomas sued out a writ of last presentation against the Abbot, which was terminated in Banco at Trinity term of the third year of King Edward, the said Thomas being in misericordiâ (for a false claim).

Osbert son of Thomas de Clinton demised the capital messuage of Aldulvistre and a carucate of land to Osbert de Berefort for a term of years. During this term Philip son of Symon died, upon whose death the Abbot took possession of his land. Osbert de Berefort, who was at that date Sheriff of Warwickshire, ejected the Abbot by force of arms. Thomas son of Philip, then in ward to the Abbot, arraigned an assize of novel disseisin against the said Osbert and the other disseissors before John de Metingham and his associate Justices at Warwick; but whilst the Abbot and said Thomas were quite unknown to the Justices, and solicited nobody (quemcunque procurassent), Osbert the Sheriff was the familiar (familiaris) of the Justices, and ruler of the county (magister patriæ), and he claimed that Philip the father of Thomas had performed homage to him for his tenement in Aldulvistre. Whilst on the part of the Abbot it was pleaded that Philip was the homager of the Abbot, and that Margaret de Nerbone, the feoffor of the Abbot, after the death of Symon the father of Philip, had had a heriot for the said tenement and the wardship of Philip, on account of which the custody, relief, and marriage of Thomas belonged to the Abbot. The Justices decided in favour of Osbert, but at Leicester a concord was made by which for a sum of 15 marks Osbert released all his claim to the wardship and marriage of the heirs and of the lands of Philip son of Symon de Aldulvistre. The Abbot then sold to Henry de Castello of Bromwiz (fn. 2) the wardship and marriage of Thomas son of Philip for a sum of 15 marks. Matildis married Stephen de Nerbone, who had issue by her a daughter Margaret, and after the death of Stephen re-married William fitz Gerout, by whom she had no issue. For a third husband she had Walter de Roleya, by whom she had issue another daughter who was called Margaret.

After the death of Matildis the widow of Richard de Saunfort who held Aldulvistre in dower, Thomas de Clinton, the father of Osbert, and this Matildis, divided the manor of Aldulvistre between them. After the death of Matildis her daughter Margaret de Nerbone and Margaret the daughter of Walter de Roleya, divided between them the land which their mother had held. Margaret the daughter of Walter de Roleya married Geoffrey de Cauz, and died without issue. After her death her share fell to Margaret de Nerbone, who held the complete half of the manor against (contra) the said Thomas. This Margaret de Nerbone gave to the Monastery of Burton the whole of her tenement in Aldulvistre in free alms; and this was confirmed by Osbert son of Thomas de Clinton, so that there was no pretence for his attempting to exact any service from the land on account of scutage. Symon also, the son of William de Albini de Kaynho, the capital lord of the fee of Aldulvistre, both of Osbert's part as of Margaret's part, confirmed to the monks the above grant in free and perpetual alms.

Quomodo diversa placita fuerunt terminata et primo de Roberto de Henovere.

Osbertus (sic) de Henovere tulit breve de novâ disseysinâ de novo vivario Magnæ Overe coram Justiciariis Dominis Willelmo de Northburi et Wychardo cum (quo quia) non erimus satis muniti contra ipsum pacem fecimus pro xl. s. Johannes da la Cornere cito postea tulit breve super eodem et coram eisdem cum quo pacem fecimus aput Betfort pro i. marcâ ad opus ipsius et ad opus Regis x. s.

Dominus Thomas de Clinton tulit breve ultimâ presentatione de advocatione Ecclesiæ de Adulvistre coram Justicariis de Banco etc. coram quibus xxvi. die Junii scilicet post octabis Sanctæ Trinitatis anno. R.R. Edwardi tertio facta disputatione super eâdem, consideratum fuit quod predictus Thomas nichil caperet per breve predictum etc.

Folio 83.

De placito moto contra Osbertum de Clinton (sic) per breve "quare ejeeit."


When Osbert de Berefort ejected us from the custody of the land of Philip son of Symon of Aldulvistre, we sued out a urit of "quare ejecit" against him, and this plea was before the Justices of the Bench.

Whilst this plea was pending, the same Osbert sued the Abbot for fealty and suit at his Court of Aldulvistre, and on the Abbot's refusal to appear, distrained him several times over; upon which the Abbot sued out a King's writ addressed to the Sheriff of Warwickshire, and this plea was in the County Court.

Pending this plea the said Osbert and Dominus Thomas de Clinton seized the Abbots cattle at Aldulvistre. These were released by a King's writ, and this plea was also before the County.

Pending these pleas in the County Court, the above-named Osbert sued out a writ to the Sheriff claiming the custody of the son and heir of Philip son of Symon, and this plea was also before the County.

Things were in this condition, when Roger de Attelberge, who was "Hundredarius" of Humelifort (i.e., Bailiff of the Hundred of Hemlingford), distrained the Abbot to sue before the Hundred Court; upon which the Abbot sued out a writ, and the plea remained in the County.

On account of the aforesaid grievances (gravaminà), the Abbot went in person to London, and by the advice of Lord Ralph de Hengham (the Justice), he sued out a writ of novel disseisin in the name of Thomas, son and heir of Philip fitz Symon, against Osbert de Berefort and others named, before the Justices Geoffrey de Leukenore and John de Metingham, who coming to Warwick, by an assize which was falsely conducted (per assisam quæ falso transiit), considered that no disseisin had taken place, because Philip his father had done homage to Osbert.

And when the Abbot in the name of the said Thomas sued out a writ to attaint the aforesaid assize, and a writ of "Pone" to move all the four writs in the County Court, to London, in the absence of the said Osbert, who was mainprized by Magister H. Lovel and Dominus William Hamelin the Sheriff of Warwickshire, and in the presence of Brothers Mathew de Kniveton and N. de Kynelwurth, who appeared for the Abbot, peace was made on condition that all actions should cease on the payment by the Abbot of 10 marks. But when these conditions were referred to the said Osbert they were not carried out by him, until the Abbot Thomas appearing against him at Leicester, by the mediation of the before-named Sheriff, a sum of 15 marks was paid to him, of which the said Osbert afterwards returned 2 marks.


Hawyse, the wife (sic) of Hugh le Lovert of Derby, sued out a writ to the Sheriff of Staffordshire "quod justificaret" the Abbot to pay to the said Hugh and Hawyse 57s. owing to them, but they (sic) did not follow up their suit.


Magister Richard de Lavinton, the Rector of the Church of Thorp, by papal authority, impleaded the Abbot and Convent before judges delegated at Oxford respecting the small tythes (super minutis decimis) of our land in Huncindon. Afterwards at Esseburne, by the mediation of Magister John de Weston, an end was put to the dispute in this way. For the sake of peace we gave the said Magister Richard 5 marks, and entered into an obligation to pay him 2 marks annually on the Feast of the Nativity of St. John so long as he held the Church of Thorp.

In the year 1275, in the 16th year of the Abbot J., Hugh Wasteneis, the son of Isolda de Ambrithon, arraigned an assize of mort d'ancestor against the Abbot before the Justices, Henry de Montfort and Salomon de Roucestre, respecting 2 bovates and 4 acres of land in Bromle, and when the Abbot was summoned to appear before those justices at Kynefare to hear the recognition of the said assize, he essoined himself, and another day was given to him at Wolverhampton, which was changed by the Justices assigned (to hear the plea) to Arnle (Arley), from whence the Abbot proceeded to Bolus, and then the action proceeded before Henry de Montfort in the absence of the said Salomon. The said Henry adjourned the suit to Stafford for the Saturday after Michaelmas Day, A.D. 1276, where Brother N. in the place of the Abbot made peace with the said Hugh for 2 marks, and Hugh gave up to the said Brother N. the charter which his mother held for that tenement, signed with the seal of the Convent in the time of the Abbot William. He also executed a release of the same tenement and sealed it and delivered it to the said Brother Nicholas. On the morrow, however, when the suit was called on, and proclamation was made for him, the said Hugh never answered by himself or by attorney, and the attorney of the Abbot prayed for judgment. It was considered therefore that the said Hugh and his sureties should be "in misericordiâ."

Folio 84.


A dispute having arisen and continued for some time between the Abbot John and Henry de Tok, the brother and heir of Sir Peter de Thok, respecting his relief and suit of court; at length, A.D. 1275, on the Day of St. Laurence, at Burton, the said Henry, in the presence of Roger de Thok his brother and of Ralph de Burgo, conceded that so far as the relief was concerned, the said Henry and his heirs should give to the Abbot for their relief of Ansedele and Pothlac xl. s., but should nevertheless pay fully the ferm due for the said vills at the appointed terms; and as regarded the suit of court, the said Henry and his heirs should be bound to make two appearances annually, and likewise whenever the King's writ was in the Court, or for the judgment of prisoners and for the reinforcement (afforciamentum) of the Court. And whereas the Abbot claimed from him common suit of court, viz., from three weeks to three weeks, and claimed also that the whole land of Ansedele was within the warren of the said Abbot, and that it was not lawful for him to hunt or take hares within it, by the advice of friends it was agreed that the said Henry should swear "tactis sacrosanctis" that none of his predecessors had ever done common suit to the court of the Abbot excepting his brother Peter, who had been unjustly compelled to it, and that he, Henry, and all his predecessors could lawfully chase and take all kind of animals ("omnias bestias") within the metes of Ansedele, three times only excepted. Accordingly on the Sunday after the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, A.D. 1277, in the presence of the Lord Abbot Thomas, Andrew the Almoner ("Elemosinarius"), Adam the Hospitaller, John the SubPrior and Precentor, N. the Chaplain of the Abbot, Thomas the Sacristan, W. Coquinarius, W. Celerarius, and many others, the said Henry made oath in the form above written. Four Chaplains made oath in the same manner before Sir William de Meinil, Ralph de Burgo, Roger de Thok, Robert de Munjoye, Engelardus de Cursun, Robert de Staunton, Milo de Melton, William junior of Rolveston, William le Sergant of Eginton, Elyas Fucher of Osmundeston, Robert de Schobenhale, John le Marescal, Robert son of Adam de Waleton, Walter the man ("homo") of the said Henry, John the man ("homo") of the said Henry, and Robert Cocus.

Folio 85.

In concilio Lugduni concessa fuit in subsidium terræ Sanctæ decima omnium reddituum et proventuum Ecclesiarum Domino Gregorio Papæ decimo de universali Ecclesiâ solvenda, etc. (This is the account of a subsidy from all Ecclesiastical revenues granted by the Council of Lyons A.D. 1274, Gregory the 10th being Pope. It differs so little from Pope Nicholas' Taxation of A.D. 1291, which has been printed, that it has not been thought necessary to transcribe it.)

Tertio Kalend Marcii in pleno Hundredo de Wyrkesworthe tento apud Esseburne in presentiâ Domini Thomæ de Bray tunc Seneschalli Domini Edmundi, venit Rogerus de Thorp et optulit se ad faciendum Domino Edmundo fidelitatem pro tenemento suo de Thorp et Huncendon et fecit, et de homagio habuit respectum usque ad adventum in partibus istis.

De placito moto inter Abbatem et villanis de Magna Overa.

This is a long account of the suit between the Abbot and his customary tenants of Mickle-Over, who claimed to be free tenants. It stales that when the Abbot's villains of Magna Ouvra, at the instigation of one Nicholas, son of Henry the Provost of Magna Ouvra, whom the Abbot had greatly honoured, and to whom he had committed for many years the custody of the manor of Bromley, refused to acknowledge themselves as villains, nor would permit a distress to be levied against them, the Abbot sued out a writ from the "Curia Regia" in this form.

Here follows a writ of King Edward dated from Clarendon, 18th February, 8th year of his reign, commanding the Sheriff of Derbyshire to assist the Abbot of Burton in distraining his villains of Magna Ouvra. This writ was delivered, to the Sheriff of Derbyshire on the last day of February in full County, and his bailiff was ordered to assist the Abbot on the requisition of the latter.

Folio 86.

A writ of King Edward, dated Clarendon, 10th February, in the 8th year of his reign, issued on the complaint of ten of the Abbot's tenants of Mickle-Over, commands the Abbot not to exact from his tenants other customs and services than were formerly due when Mickle-Over was of the ancient demesne of the Crown.

The narrative goes on to say that by virtue of the first of these two writs, the Sheriff's bailiff seized 21 oxen and 18 pigs at Mickle-Over, at the hour of Vespers, 4th March, and took them on the morrow to Burton.

In the meantime the tenants having produced their writ to the Sheriff, and entered into securities to prosecute their suit at Westminster against the Abbot, the Sheriff ordered his bailiff to remove the distress.

On the fourth kalends of March, when G. de Clifton, the Sheriff of Notts, Ralph de Burgh, William Bigge, Milo de Melton, and others, were at Finderne on the business of the Abbot, all the villains of Mickle-Over came, bringing with them Sir William de Meinil, Magister Adam de Armundesham, and others, and it was agreed that the villains should cultivate and sow their lands pacifically up to Easter.

Folio 87.

Malicia Villanorum. (In red letters.)

Pending this truce and delay which had been granted by the Abbot pro bono pacis, the villains sued out two more writs against the Abbot, which are given at full length. In the first the Sheriff is commanded to cause the Abbot to put in pledges to answer the complaint of the tenants that he exacted from them customs and services unjustly. The second writ was a writ of trespass, by which the Abbot was forced to find sureties to answer the complaint of the tenants, that he had come in the night vi et armis and taken their goods and chattels from MickleOver to the value of £20, and committed other enormities to their great damage and against the King's peace. Dated from Dunamen, 15th March, in the 8th year of the King's reign.

The tenants appeared against the Abbot to prosecute their suit at a month from Easter, and by their attorney claimed to be of the ancient demesne of the Crown, which was denied by the Abbot, and on being asked by the Justices how they proposed to verify that they were of ancient demesne, answered they would do it by Domesday ("quomodo vellent verificare se esse de antiquo dominico et respondissent per Domusday"). A day was accordingly given to them to exhibit Domesday, which was examined by the Justices, by which it appeared that Overa was not included amongst the lands of ancient demesne in Domesday, but amongst those of the Abbot, but it stated that King Edward had held ten carucates of land in Overa, "ad geldam," upon which a discussion took place far many days before the Justices of the Bench and Barons of the Exchequer, until at length on the 3rd June, judgment was given that the men of Overa were villains of the Abbot, and should remain so ("quod homines de Overa sicut villani venerant, ita recederent et remanerent").

Folio 88.

Judicium datum contra villanos per Dominum Thomam de Weyland Willelmum de Brunton et socios suos iii. die Junii.

This is the official record of the suit; it quotes the entry from Domesday at full length, and adds, "Et quia per predictum Domusday compertum est quod predictum manerium fuit geldabilis, nec invenitur inter terras dominicas Domini Regis consideratum est quod predictus Abbas iret sine die, et predicti Robertus et alii in misericordiâ, pro falso clamio."

This judgment was delivered on the 3rd June, and on the 6th June following the Abbot sent six monks, knights and servants, and took 27 boars, 40 oxen, 50 cows and heifers, 506 sheep, and 77 pigs, and lodged some of them in Staffordshire and some in Derbyshire.

On the 22nd of June six of the Abbot's villains came to Burton bringing with them a King's writ addressed to the Abbot, which stated that it had been shown to the King by John son of Herbert and his men of Magna Overa, "quod tu occasione cujusdam placiti nuper moti in curiâ nostrâ per breve nostrum coram Justiciariis nostris de Banco de consuetudinibus et servitiis tibi a prefatis hominibus faciendis, quæ iidem homines et antecessores sui de manerio predicto tibi et predecessoribus tuis quondam Abbatibus de Burthon super Trentam temporibus retroactis facere consueverunt averia ipsorum hominum apud Magna Uvera in Comitatu Derbieæ cepisti et averia ilia a comitatu illo usque in Comitatum Staffordiæ fugasti et ea adhuc ibidem detines contra legem et consuetudinem regni nostri et contra pacem nostrum. Et ideo tibi precipimus quod averia predicta predictis hominibus sine dilatione deliberare facias. Et nisi ad mandatum nostrum hoc feceris a Vicecomite nostro predicto Staffordiæ id fieri precipimus. Et nichilominus te attachiari faciemus et ad respondendum nobis de contemptu et predictis hominibus de dampnis quæ sustinuerunt occasione transgressionis predictæ. Teste me ipso apud West. viii. die Junii anno regni nostri octavo.

On reading this writ, the Abbot determined not to give up the cattle for several reasons, of which the principal one was that it had been sued out on a false suggestion, making no mention of the judgment in his favour. Another reason was that when Ralph de Burgh, the Abbot's Seneschall, had held a court at Finderne, and having removed from his office the Provost of Mickle Over, had wished to substitute another in his place, all and singular had refused to accept the post because all their lands and cattle were in the Abbot's hands, notwithstanding that they were the villains of the Abbot, and had nothing but their bodies which did not belong to the Abbot.

Folio 89.

As the Abbot would not give up their cattle, the tenants produced another writ addressed to the Sheriff of Staffordshire, dated the same day as the last (viz., 8th June, in the 8th year of the King's reign), commanding him to release the cattle without delay, and in case of resistance to attach those who resisted to answer for their contempt at three weeks from Michaelmas "in parliamento nostro."

On the authority of this writ the Sheriff of Staffordshire sent to Bromley to release the cattle, but his bailiff was informed that all the cattle there belonged to the Abbot. Upon this Colin and nine other tenants of Mickle-Over appeared before the King's Court, complaining that in contempt of the King, and to their great damage, the Abbot had refused to liberate their cattle; and on the 9th July they appeared at Celeburne before the Chancellor and many other laymen and clerks who were there with the King, and averred the same and many worse things of the Abbot; in all which they were assisted by a certain Clerk Wyther. The Abbot therefore sent Brother Nicholas de Kinelworth, who after treating of the matter with Sir Ralph de Hengham, the Justiciary, appeared before the Chancellor and arranged that the Abbot should abide by the verdict given in Banco until it was superseded by another. Upon this the Abbot ejected the aforesaid nine men and the brother of Colin from their lands and houses, but permitted the wives and children to remain; but afterwards, in order that they might sue out a writ of novel disseisin, the wives were likewise ejected, viz., on the 13th July. After this the men of Magna Uvera, having followed the King for several days, brought back with them a writ addressed to the Sheriff of Nottinghamshire, commanding him to cause the cattle of the following tenants to be replevied, viz.:—
John, son of Hubert,
William, son of Henry,
Henry, son of Brito,
Molle la Wyse,
Alice, daughter of Robert,
Thomas le Fevere,
Alienora, the widow of Nicholas of Uvera,
Nicholas le Jeuene,
William, son of Robert,
John le Norreys,
John, son of Henry,
Nicholas, son of John,
Henry le Forester,
Robert Pirekoz,
Thomas le Halfweni,
Robert, son of Robert,
Peter Baret,
Richard de Barue,
Agnes del Willehul,
John, son of John atte Chirchestile.
Robert, son of Geoffrey,
Richard Campiun,
William de Derleye,
Roger Godwin.
Alice, the widow of Nicholas of Uvera,
Henry le Abbe,
Alienora, widow of Ralph of Uvera,
Henry, son of Alice,
Henry, son of Henry,
William, son of William,
William Campiun,
William Orger,
Matilda la Vidue.
Richard, son of Robert,
William, son of Robert,
Nicholas, son of William,
William, son of Nicholas,
Nicholas Orger,
and John de Barue,
and which cattle the Abbot of Burton, Brother Thomas de Pakinton, Brother Adam de Redemore, Brother Thomas de Makeleye, Roger Brani, Robert de Bromle, William de Thurleston, and Adam le Brune, had taken and unjustly detained, etc. Dated from Langeleye, 21st July, 8th year of our reign.

Folio 90.

On the authority of this writ, G. de Clifton, the Sheriff of Nottinghamshire, directed his Bailiff of Wirkesworth to release the cattle, on the tenants giving security to prosecute their suit against the Abbot.

Malicia Symonis de Clifton. (In red letters.)

On the 25th July, Symon de Clifton, the Bailiff of Wirkesworth, gave up to the tenants seven oxen and twenty-nine cows which were at Huncedon, notwithstanding the protest of our serviens there that they belonged to the Abbot.

The Sheriff of Nottinghamshire also wrote in similar terms to the Bailiff of Repindon, but when the Bailiff came to Caldewall to replevy the cattle of the tenants of Magna Ouvra, on being informed that the cattle there belonged to the Abbot, he went away without delivering them up.

The tenants also brought a writ to the Sheriff of Staffordshire ordering him to replevy their cattle, and the above-named Sheriff sent the same mandate to the Bailiff of Pirchull, who coming to Bromley was informed that all the cattle there belonged to the Abbot: no cattle were therefore given up at that place. Upon this the villains of Magna Uvera went with their wives and children ("cum uxoribus et parvulis") to the King, who was then at Nottingham, and laying before him a grievous complaint of robbery and expulsion from their houses, "querelam gravissimam de roberiâ et expulsione domorum detulerunt"), brought back with them new writs to the Sheriffs to replevy their cattle.

But on the 7th August a Court was held at Finderne, where many of the tenants of Magna Uvera acknowledged themselves to be the Abbot's villains, and prayed for the release of their cattle. They were told to present themselves at the next County Court, when an answer would be given them.

On the 8th August, in the presence of G. de Clifton, the Sheriff of Derbyshire, Sir William de Hondesacre, Sir Robert de Warda, Sir Robert de Staunton, Sir John Grim, Sir Alured de Sulevey, Sir Ralph de Mungoy, Sir Henry de Braylesfort, arid Sir Henry de Chaundoys, Knights, and many other freeholders, Nicholas, son of William (the Provost), and five other tenants, came and acknowleged themselves to be natives at the will of their lord ("nativos ad voluntatem domini"), and pledged themselves not to sue out any writ against their lord; and this was enrolled on the County Roll ("in rotulo Comitatûs"). Henry Abbot of Uvera, and eleven other tenants, having appeared as plaintiffs against the Abbot, complaining that he and his men had come in the night to their houses at Uvera, and had unjustly taken away their goods and chattels, tlve Abbot defended the suit, stating he had taken none of their goods, became he had taken his own goods only, because being villains they held nothing "extra ventrem." And the said Henry and the other tenants by John de Lokinton their speaker ("narratorem suum"), said they were free men, and put themselves on the Country (i.e., appealed to a jury). The Bailiff of Morleston was therefore ordered to make inquisition into the fact, and return it to the next County Court.

William de Derleye and six others who had sued the Abbot came and acknowledged themselves to be villains at this Court.

Folio 91.

William son of Henry and thirteen other tenants who had sued the Abbot at the same Court, withdrew their plea; they and their sureties for the prosecution were therefore "in misericordiâ."

On the 9th August the Abbot held a Court at Finderne. William de Derley, born at Henovere, came and acknowledged himself to be the Abbot's native, holding at the will of the Abbot in villenage two bovates, and giving "Stuch" every year and "Marchetum," and on account of ancient customs two hens at Xmas and 20 eggs at Easter; and because he came freely ("gratis") he retained his lands as he formerly held them; and he gave for his transgression half a mark, and he swore fealty, and that he would come and go at the will of the Abbot.

William son of William atte Chirchestile came and acknowledged himself to be the Abbot's native as above, and for his transgression, and for two bovates of land which his father had held, and which Nicholas Orgar held, he made a fine of 3 marks, and he would do all as the aforesaid William (de Derley).

Thirty other tenants named submit and are re-admitted into their holdings in the same way at this Court.

The land of Alienora, the widow of Nicholas de Brunlaston, was committed to Richard fitz Robert, Nicholas Orgar, and Thomas le Halfweni to support the said Alienora, and for which they were to pay 10s. annually. At the same Court, Agnes the daughter of Henry Babon came and acknowledged herself to be a native of the Abbot, and made fine of 3 marks for 2 bovates of land, and gave half a mark for license to marry Henry de Henore, and made oath as the others.

On the Vigil of the Assumption three more of the tenants submitted, amongst them Henry son of Nicholas, the ringleader of the malcontents.

On the 13th September Richard Champiun and William son of Dobbe were conducted to Burton and put into the stocks (in compede) from the morning till vespers, which they prayed for pardon with great humility, acknowledging themselves to be the Abbot's villains. They were released for that night, and in the morning on the morrow they voluntarily submitted themselves again to the stocks, and were released. William gave to the Abbot half of all the corn growing on his land for his transgression, and for a fine to have two bovates of land. Richard also gave half his growing corn to the Abbot. Two other tenants submitted on this day, and Henry the Forester, a native of tlie Lord Edmund (the King's brother), made fine of 20s. for his chattels and for permission to give up the land he held of the Abbot.


  • 1. It is by no means uncommon to find widows holding manors in dower in ancient days making feoffments of land in them, and for this reason considered by archæologists to be the heiresses of these manors. I have met with two or three instances of misapprehension caused by this circumstance.
  • 2. Henry de Castello, the tenant at Bromwich of the Barons of Dudley. There were two separate manors at Bromwich, which came to be known as West Bromwich and Castle Bromwich. The latter seems to have derived its name from this family of "de Castello," and not from the existence of a castle.