An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 7. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1807.
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Was the lordship of William Earl Warren, and held of him by Walter; Toke, a great Saxon thane, held it in the reign of the Confessor, who was dispossessed at the conquest. It contained 2 carucates of land, 29 bordarers, and 2 servi, there were 2 carucates in demean, and 4 amongst the men, &c. 16 acres of meadow, a mill, 1 runcus, or beast for carriage, with 5 cows, 180 sheep, 40 goats, 1 beesskep, and a church not endowed with any land, valued before the conquest at 40s. and at the survey at 60s.; the whole was 4 furlongs long and broad, and paid 12d. gelt. (fn. 1)
The family of the Grancourts were early enfeoft of this manor: Walter, son of William de Grancourt, was lord in 11th year of King John, when he gave to the King a good hawk, to be exempted from being put on any assise, except between barons, (fn. 2) this Walter was probably desended from that Walter who held it at the survey; and in the 14th of that King, William de Bellomonte gave to the King 60 marks, to have the custody of Walter de Grancourt, who was indicted for killing a man, but was rectus in curia, in the 3d of Henry III. when he gave a mark to have a pone against William de Burnham, and held in this town, Crokeston, and Clipstan, one fee and 3 quarters, of the Earl Warren; and in the following year he granted to Robert, the prior of Castleacre, &c. by fine, the advowson of this church, or rather confirmed it, being granted before by Hugh de Grancourt, his ancestor.
William de Grancourt was lord in the 45th of Henry III. and in the 52d of that king, was a witness to several writs, (being then, as I take it, chief baron of the Exchequer,) dated November 21, directed to the sheriff of Norfolk, and several other sheriffs, reciting, that whereas the King had great occasion for money, by reason of his foreign and domestic affairs, that as he would avoid corporal punishment, loss of his goods, and the King's anger, he should speedily pay 400 marks of the money, due on the summons of the last iter of the justices, in that county, otherwise he should know that the King would chastise his neglect in such a manner, that his punishment should teach others how to perform the King's commands.
In the 31st of Edward I. Edmund de Munpinson was querent in a fine, and Thomas de Grancurt deforciant, of the 3d part of this manor, granted to Edmund with 6l. per ann. rent, and in the next year Thomas de Grancurt, and Agnes his wife, conveyed by fine to Walter de Langton Bishop of Coventry and Litchfield, 23 messuages, a mill, 5 carucates of land, 40 acres of meadow, 200 of pasture, 8 of wood, with 6s. rent in this town, Crokeston, Clypston, Kettleston, Woodnorton, Geyst, and Stybberd, with two parts of the manor of Fulmodeston, and the advowson of the church of Kettleston, except 6l. per ann. rent here, all granted to the Bishop, who gave to Thomas and Agnes, the lordships of Aspal and Debenham in Suffolk; and in the 35th of the said King, Giles de Monpinzun and Christiana his wife, conveyed to the said Bishop the 3d part of this manor by fine, with the 6l. per ann. rent.
In the 8th of Edward II. Humphrey de Bohun Earl of Essex and Hereford, and Elizabeth his wife, were querents, and John parson of of Snoring Parva deforciant, of 21 messuages, 5 carucates of land, and 2 parts of this manor, settled on Humphrey and Elizabeth; and Walter de Langton Bishop of Coventry, &c. conveyed to the said Earl, in the 12th of the aforesaid King, 18 messuages, 2 carucates of land, with 10l. rent in this town, Clipston, Croxton, and Kettleston, with the third part of this manor; the Earl settling an annual rent of 30l. on the Bishop, for life. And Humphrey de Bohun Earl of Hereford, &c. in the 46th of Edward III. dying possessed of it, left 2 daughters and coheirs, Eleanor, afterwards wife to Thomas of Woodstoke Duke of Gloucester, 6th son to King Edward III. and Mary, wife afterwards to Henry Earl of Derby, who was King of England by the name of Henry IV. which Thomas Duke of Gloucester died lord in the 21st of Richard II. when it should have descended to Edmund Stafford Earl of Stafford, who married Anne, (fn. 3) one of the 2 daughters, and at length sole heir to the said Duke; but Henry Earl of Derby, &c. possessed it in right of Mary, his wife, and King Henry V. and VI. were also lords; it remained in the Crown till King Richard III. in his first year, granted it to Henry Stafford Duke of Bucks, on July 13th, who being soon after beheaded, (as a rebel against the said King,) at Salisbury, it was again in the Crown.
The Church of Fulmodeston is dedicated to St. Mary. In the reign of Edward I. the prior of Castleacre had the patronage; the rector had a manse in the village of Croxton, (which belonged to this parish,) with 20 acres of land, but the rector was subject to an annual payment of 13 marks, to that priory; the rectory, with the chapel of Crokstone, was valued at 15 marks, the prior of Castleacre had also a portion of tithe of 20s. Peter-pence 2s.