Hundred of Earsham: Pulham

An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 5. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1806.

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Francis Blomefield, 'Hundred of Earsham: Pulham', in An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 5, (London, 1806) pp. 387-405. British History Online [accessed 19 May 2024].

Francis Blomefield. "Hundred of Earsham: Pulham", in An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 5, (London, 1806) 387-405. British History Online, accessed May 19, 2024,

Blomefield, Francis. "Hundred of Earsham: Pulham", An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 5, (London, 1806). 387-405. British History Online. Web. 19 May 2024,

In this section


This rectory, with the chapel of St. Mary Magdalen, was taxed in the old Valor at 70 marks, and in the year 1559, (fn. 1) was returned by the name of Pulham Utraque, among the benefices that pay double institution fees, but without reason, for there never was a double institution, it being only a chapel of ease to Pulham St. Mary the Virgin; (fn. 2) founded on account of the market anciently held there, which occasioned a great many people to fix near it, and for their convenience it was first erected; Norwich Domesday says, that the rector had a noble house, and about 44 acres of glebe; that the church with its chapel, was then valued at 80 marks; that the procurations were 7s. 7d. ob. the Peter-pence 3s. and that the parish paid clear to each tenth 11l. 4s. It is an undischarged living, and as such, pays first-fruits, and yearly tenths, and is capable of augmentation: it stands thus in the King's Books,

36l. 6s. 8d.—Pulham rectory.—3l. 6s. 8d. tenths.

The Chorography of Norfolk (fn. 3) hath this: "to the rectory belongs antient and large built inset house, and all other houses of office necessary and convenient, with 44 acres of glebe; all tithes are paid in kind, save for lactage 1d. (fn. 4) for every acre of meadow 2d. for port and harthsilver is paid a hallowmass penny; and the rector bath mortuaries of all his parishioners, according to the statute. (fn. 5) The temporals of the Prior of Ely were taxed at 3l.

Rectors of Pulham.

1253, Henry de Wengham, Dean of St. Martin le Grand in London, presented by the King, on account of the vacancy of the see of Ely, to which the advowson belongs. (fn. 6) Henry III. at the death of William de Kilkenny Bishop of Ely, would have prevailed upon Ely monks to have chosen this Henry de Wengham, then his chancellor, to that see; but could not persuade them: upon which, the King spoiled the woods and parks of the bishoprick, and applied to the Pope; but Wengham never stirred at all in the matter, but confessed Hugh de Balsham, whom the monks had elected, more worthy than himself: it is also said, that the suit on his behalf was commenced by the King, without his knowledge; and that when he saw his Majesty so earnest, and deal so violently in it, he went to him, and humbly besought him to let the monks alone, and cease further soliciting them by his armed and imperious requests; for (saith he) after invocation of the name of God, the grace and direction of his holy Spirit, they have chosen a man more worthy than myself, and God forbid, that I should, as it were by force, invade that noble bishoprick, and usurp the ministry of the same, with a seared or cauterised conscience: upon which, the King acquiesced in his request, and in 1259, he was made Bishop of London; being then Chancellor of England, Chamberlain of Gascoigne, Dean of Tottenhall and St. Martin's, and rector here: in 1258, he refused the bishoprick of Winchester; he was twice embassadour into France, and dying July 13, 1261, was buried in his cathedral. (Godwin's Catal. p. 195, 229, 65.)

1301, Sir Simon de Walpole, chaplain to Ralph de Walpole his brother, who was Bishop of Norwich and Ely; he resigned Chevele in Cambridgeshire, to William de Walpole his brother, when he took this, and died rector here, and lies interred in the chancel, under a stone which hath the following inscription in antique capitals, with a cross on a lion passant, and Jesus Salvator in a cipher.

1331, John de Colby, presented by William de Colby, rector of Wilby in Suffolk, who had a grant of it from Bishop Hotham, on condition he settled divers lands here on the see; and accordingly, as soon as his brother John had possession, he levied a fine with Will. de Colby, and released all right in the advowson, and in all their lands in Pulham, to the Bishop and his successours. He changed this for Thingden in Lincoln diocese, in

1339, with Master John de Hindesley, prebend of the church of Karentoc in Exeter diocese; who was succeeded by

John de Herwardstok, and he in

1341, by Master Michael de Northburgh or Northbrook, archdeacon of Suffolk, prebend of Sutton, LL. D. He was confirmed Bishop of Loadon, July 7, 1355, (fn. 7) and died of the plague Sept, 9, 1361, having resigned this, in exchange for Ledbury in Hereford diocese, in

1351, with William de Kellesey, who was presented by Thomas Lisle or Lylde Bishop of Ely. This Bishop disobliging the King, in 1354, had a writ of ne exeas regnum (fn. 8) sent him, commanding him, on forfeiture of all that he could forfeit to the King, to stay in England, and come in person to the parliament, which he had refused to do; and therefore the King seized this advowson, and on the vacancy of this rectory, about

1357, gave it to William de Wykham, son of John Perot and Sibill his wife, of Tichford, near Wickham in Hampshire, from which place he assumed his name. Godwin in his Catalogue of Bishops, p. 236, gives us a large account of the birth, parts, fortune, and great rise of this man; who was parson of St. Martin's in London, then dean of St. Martin le Grand, successively archdeacon of Lincoln, Northampton, and Buckingham: besides these ecclesiastical preferments, the provostship of Wells, a number of benefices, and 12 prebends, in several churches, he held many temporal offices, as the secretaryship, the keeping of the privy seal, the mastership of wards, the treasurership of the King's revenues in France, and divers others; but the yearly revenues of his spiritual promotions only, as they were then rated in the King's Books, amounted unto 876l. 13s. 4d. In 1356, he was prosecuted in the Pope's consistory at Rome, for illegally holding this benefice, with so many, that had cure of souls; but to no purpose, for King Edw. III. who gave it him, and did every thing for him he desired, immediately confirmed it by patent under the great seal, to be held in commendam for life, with all his other preferments; and though he was attached again, it availed nothing, for he had another patent of confirmation passed in 1360; but the next year he resigned it voluntarily to his friend, for whom he had procured a presentation from the King: this man was consecrated Bishop of Winchester in 1367, and was Chancellor of England; he was founder of New College in Oxford, and died in 1404.

1361, Andrew de Stratford, a relation of John Stratford Archbishop of Canterbury, and an acquaintance of Bishop Wickham's, was instituted on the King's presentation, on account of the temporals of Ely bishoprick in his hands; he was succeeded in

1384, By Thomas Haxey, who the same year changed it for St. Nicholas Cold Abbey in London diocese, with

John Whiteman, who changed it for a canonry in St. Martin's le Grand, London, and the prebend of Godestre, in

1385, with Peter Mighell, who the same year, exchanged it for the church of the Holy Trinity in Dorchester, with

William Holym, and he the same year resigned it for the office of sub-dean of York, to

Roger Bacon, who was succeeded at his death, in

1390, by Master John Metfield, LL. D. Archdeacon of Ely, where he was buried in 1411. (fn. 9)

1407, John Ixworth, LL. D.

1412, Master Richard Woodward, who is buried here; his brass is loose in the porch chamber, and is thus inscribed,

Here lythe Mayster Rychard Wodeward that sumtyme of this Chirche Parson was, God grawnt ys Soul Mercy and Grace, and for Charite, Pater, Noster, and Ave, Amen.

1446, Master Walter Blaket, A. M. he resigned in

1460, to Henry Sharp, LL. D. who resigned also in

1463, to Will. Egmerton, who died and was buried here; and in

1465, Sir Thomas Howes, sometime rector of Castlecombe in Wiltshire, and of Blofield in Norfolk, chaplain to Sir John Fastolf, Knight of the Garter, was presented by William Grey Bishop of Ely. This man was one of Sir John's executors, and had much money to be laid out about the repairs and ornaments of churches, and other religious places, in all, about 4000 marks; with part of it he repaired this church and chancel, and in a south window there, he put up the effigies of Sir John Fastolf, in his coat armour, gilt very fair, with his

Crest. on a wreath az. and or, a plume of feathers arg. and two escutcheons, with the cross of St. George, and his own arms and

Supporters, being two angels, viz.

Fastolf, quarterly or and az. on a bend gul. three croslets trefflé arg. (fn. 10) impaling

Tiptoft, arg. a saltier ingrailed gul. and the same is over Millecent daughter of Sir Robert Tiptoft, Knt. his wife, whose effigies in a mantle of her coat armour, was in the same window, kneeling in the opposite pane, and underneath them was this, but these words only now remain,

Fastolff et Ecclesie Rectoris omnium

Orate pro animabus Domini Johannis Fastolf Militis, qui multa bona fecit in tempore Uite, et Milecencie Uroris eius et Domini Thome Howes istius Ecclesie Rectoris, et omnium fide- lium defunctorum.

1468, Nicholas Gay, S.T.P. his brass his loose in the church porch chamber, and hath this on it,

Hic iacet Magister Nicolaus Gay, in Theologia Doctor, quon- dam Rector istius Ecclesie qui obiit Anno Domini Moccccolrriiiio. quarto Die Mensis Julii, cuius anime propicietur Deus Amen.

1474, John Yotton, S. T. P.

1512, Master Ric. Harrison.

1542, Ric. Wilks, S. T. P.; he resigned in

1550, to Mr. Andrew Perne, S. T. B.; he was afterwards doctor in divinity, the 2d dean of Ely, master of Peter-house in Cambridge, to which he was a great benefactor; (fn. 11) was instituted to Walpole in 1549; rector of Balsham in 1565; chaplain to Archbishop Parker, and perhaps to his two successours, for he died at Lambeth 26 Apr. 1589, and is buried in the chancel of the parish church there; he was sometime rector of Somersham, and resigned this rectory in

1551, to John Goodrich, A. M. a relation to Thomas Goodrich Bishop of Ely, who gave him this living, which he resigned in

1557, to William May, LL. D. who was chancellor of Ely, first prehend of the 3d stall there, (fn. 12) afterwards dean of St. Paul's, but was deprived of that deanery in 1554; he was the last presented by the Bishop of Ely.

1565, John Crane was the first presented in right of the Crown, (fn. 13) where the patronage remains at this time; at his death in

1583, Hugh Castleton, S. T. B. succeeded, and held it united to Thorndon in Suffolk; he was was prebend of Lyn, in the church in Norwich, (see vol. iv. p. 668.) In 1603, he returned answer, that though Pulham Magdalen was only a chapel of ease to Pulham St. Mary the Virgin, yet they were separate parishes; and that there were 286 communicants in St. Mary's, and 282 in St. Mary Magdalen's parish; he died in

1615, and Daniel Sayer, A. M. a native of this town, (fn. 14) was presented by Edw. Sayer, who had obtained a grant of the turn from the Crown. At his death in

1660, William Starkey, A. M. had it, he was afterwards doctor in divinity, and died in

1684, And was succeeded by William Starkey, A. M. his son; and is buried here with this inscription,

Here lieth the Body of William Starkey, the son of Dr. Starkey, both rectors of this church, whose first wife was Mary the daughter of Gascoigne Welde of Braken-Ash, Esq. (fn. 15) His 2d wife, the daughter of John Amyas of Hingham, Gent. (fn. 16) who in pious memory, caused this stone to be laid. He died Oct. 13, 1717, aged 66.

Crest, a stork's head erased proper.

Starkey, arg. a stork sab. impaling Welde, as at p. 87.; and Amyas, as at p. 429, vol. ii.

Mrs. Margaret 3d Daughter of Doctor Starkey, died May 8, 1712, 56.

Anne Daughter of William Starkey and Anne his Wife, buried Jan. 17, 1661, æt. 13.

1717, Nicholas Clagett: he was chaplain to the Earl of Sunderland, and left this for the living of Brighton in Oxfordshire, and afterwards died Bishop of Exeter, and was formerly minister at Bury in Suffolk.

1721, Michael Claget, A. M. who died rector here, and was succeeded in

1728, by William Broome, LL. D. who resigned the rectory of Stirston in Suffolk, and held this united to Oakly in that county till he took the vicarage of Eye, and held it united to this, till his death: he was a learned man, especially in the Greek language, being chiefly concerned in translating the notes for Mr. Pope's Homer; and was also, no mean poet himself, as his poems published show; he was chaplain to Charles Lord Cornwaleis, and was sprung from mean parents in Cheshire, died at Bath, and lies interred in the abbey church there, by Dr. Baker Bishop of Norwich; leaving only one son, Charles John Broome, of St. John's college in Cambridge, who died unmarried in 1747.

The honourable Edward Towneshend, brother to Lord Towneshend, is the present rector.

About a furlong distant from the church, south-west thereof, on the other side of the road, stands a small chapel, now used for a school room, which seems to have been founded very early, by the brethren and sisters of St. James's gild, to which apostle this chapel was dedicated; and in which St. James's gild was held, till Edw. the Sixth's time, when all such fraternities were suppressed: here was a hermitage close by it, in which a hermit dwelt, who daily officiated in it, and prayed for the living members of the gild, and for the souls of the deceased that belonged to it. The present fabrick was built about 1401, when John Fordham Bishop of Ely granted an indulgence of 40 days pardon, to last for three years, to all that would contribute to rebuild it, and to maintain Walter Colman, the poor hermit, there; as I find in Register Fordham, fo. 193.

This town was heretofore famous for hats, dornecks, and coverlets, which were made in great quantities here; and indeed, in the act passed in 1551, for the advantage of the citizens of Norwich, forbidding any out of the city, unless in some corporate and market town, to make any of those commodities, all of these businesses living in Pulham, were excepted, as those trades had been there followed for some time past. See vol. iii. p. 262.

The church of St. Mary the Virgin is the principal or motherchurch, and hath a square tower, with a spire on its top, and six bells; on the fifth is this,

Sancta Maria ora pro Nobis.

The nave, south isle, and its porch, as also the chancel, are covered with lead; the north vestry being down

On an old wooden stand or eagle, is this,

Bocher Margret Bocher,

In the porch chamber lie abundance of court rolls, and evidences of the manor, with armour, a broken organ, and several brass plates reaved off the stones in the church, which are thus inscribed:

Orate pro anima Thome Wolnal, qui obiiti ro die Aprilis Ao D. Mo vC rrriiii. cuius anime propicietur deus.

Orate pro anima Richardi Myngey qui obiit rriro die Augusti Ao Dni: Mo. vCrrriii: cuius anime propicietur deus.

Orate pro anima Johannis Cobbe, qui obiit rrr die Augusti Anno Christi Mo vC rv. cuius anime propicietur deus.

Pray for the Soule of Thomas Berne late Serton of this Cherrhe, and Alyce hys Wyfe, Ao D. Mo. vC rlviio.

Uroris Walteri Mayn, que mini, Mo cccco lvo. cuius anime propicietur deus.

Orate pro animabus Johannis Cobbe et Margarete Uroris eius, qui obiit rrio die Oct. Ao Dni. Mo cccco vo. quorum animabus propicietur deus, Amen.

Orate pro anima Juliane Wolnawe, cuisu anime propicietur deus.

There is a stone in the chancel having its brass plate, on which the inscription was, lost; but on another plate, the arms of Lany and his quarterings, (fn. 17) quartered, impaling

Aslack and her eight quarterings, marshalled, remain; which show, that that Lany who married the heiress of Aslack, is here interred.

On a black marble within the communion rails, their son, Aslack Lany, and his wife, with 12 coats marshalled, viz. 1, Aslack, 2, Lany, and their quarterings, impaling Jermy, and this,

Here lyeth buried the Body of Aslack Lany, Esq. who being of the Age of 71 Years, died in Jan. 1639. And also the Body of Eliz. Lany his Wife, who being 68 Years old in Sept. 1646, died after that Tyme, and was one of the Daughters of John Jermy, Esq.

Between the two former stones, is another thus inscribed,

Sacrum hoc Memoriæ Margaretæ Smyth, (Vitæ Sanctificatæ) nuper Uxoris Samuelis Smyth, Armigeri, ac unius Filiarum Aslack Laney - - - - dictus Aslack posuit, obijt 13 Apr. A. D. 1635.

But short was her Life, yet lives she ever, And Death has his Due, yet dyes she never.

In the middle isle are two black marbles.

Hodie Mihi, Cras tibi.

Elizabeth Sayer, the Wife of John Sayer, departed this Life the 29th Day of April, 1653.

Hodie Mihi, Cras tibi.

Here under lyeth the Body of John Sayer Gent. who departed this Life the 21st Day of April, Anno Domini 1677.

There are four altar tombs at the east end of the chancel in the churchyard.

Arms of Stebbing and Wood.

1. Anne, daughter of Augustine Wood, Gent. died 6 Aug. 1685.

2. Mary, daughter of George Stebbing of Norwich, Gent. and Martha his wife, Dr. of Robert Wood, late of Brook in Norfolk, Esq. died Oct. 24, 1694, æt. 21.

3. Mary, daughter of Augustine Wood, 11 Apr. 1706.

4. Margaret, wife of Peter Watts, heiress of Will. Dowsing of Laxfield in Suffolk, ob. 14 Febr. 1707.

A lion rampant and mullet impales a fess between two lions passant. Michael Walne, Gent. died Aug. 26, 1682, æt. 59.

In the time of John Morton Bishop of Ely, (fn. 18) who was consecrated in 1478, and was translated into Canterbury in 1486, and died in 1500; the windows of this church were new glazed, and adorned with the arms of the East Angles, of the see of Ely single, and impaled with

Morton, quarterly gul. and erm. in the first and fourth quarters, goat's head erased arg.

And this he did in respect to Robert Morton, Esq. his uncle, who lived here in 1460, and was buried in this church in 1467 : as I learn from his will, (fn. 19) in which he made Alice his wife, (who I suppose was a Tendring, by the arms of Morton impaled with Tendring in one of the windows,) and John Ashfield, junior, executors; and gave his manors of Lympol and Hesse in Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire, to Nicholas his son; and legacies to Margaret and Osca, his two daughters.

It seems that the tower and porch were built about this time, by the assistance of the Bishop and other benefactors; on the porch there is a great quantity of imagery in stone; on one side of the entrance, an angel holds a scroll with Abe maria on it; opposite is a Bishop sitting on his throne, a goat's face under him as the conusance of Morton, the book of the Holy Gospel on a stand by him, on which sits a dove with its beak close to the Bisop's ear, to intimate that book to be dictated by the Holy Spirit; by the stand is a helmet, on which, for a crest, is the trunk of a tree raguled, with three arms cut off, representing the Holy Trinity; there are eight angels, four with trumpets in their mouths, two playing on lutes, and two on violins; all the building is adorned with angels faces, &c. There are four large shields under the image of the Virgin Mary, that was placed in a niche, but is now pulled out of it, which are, the instruments of the Passion, the emblem of the Trinity and the arms of the East Angles and Ely see. Five images carved in stone, are fixed on the top of the battlements, 1, A wolf sitting, holding St. Edmund's head in its paws. 2, A lion. 3, A woodman, sitting with one leg on his knee. 4, A greyhound seiant. 5, Defaced. And there are the arms of Morton Archbishop of Canterbury; and on a shield three cardinals caps; and faces, by their habits, of the four degrees, viz. a monk or regular, a parish-priest, or secular, a gentleman, and a peasant.

1. Three cinquefoils remain, a de-lis for difference.

2. Kemp, three garbs, lost.

3. Chequy a chevron er. remain.

4. A garb between three croslets treflé.

Crusuly, in the midst a covered cup. Three covered cups. A cross moline. Many cinquefoils about the building.

In the east window in the chancel, are represented the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; and underneath is the blessed Virgin with our Saviour in her arms, and a lily by her, as patroness of this church in particular; and St. Peter, as patron of the church universal; with persons playing upon violins and other musical instruments on either side; and at their feet the wise men offering their censers, &c. with the arms of the East-Angles, of Ely church, and St. George; and

England alone, az. three lions passant guardant or.

Lozenge, az. and arg. on each other lozenge a de-lis sab.

Gul. a lion saliant in a bordure invecked arg. langued and armed of the field.

Tiptoft, or Tibetot, arg. a satier ingrailed sab.

The chapel of St. Mary Magdalen, commonly called Pulhammarket church, is a good fabrick, with a large square tower, a clock, and six bells; a handsome north porch, two isles, and nave, all leaded; the chancel being tiled; it is an exceeding lightsome building, kept very neat and clean.

It stands at the south end of the late market-place, and is a mile at least from its mother-church.

In 1518, John Baker, parish chaplain here, was buried in the church, and left 20s. to repair Alderford church.

In 1536, Robert Edwards, priest, parish chaplain, was buried here, and gave legacies to the gild of St. Mary Magdalen, held in this church ; to the chapel at Wacton, to the chapel of St. James at Pulham Mary, and to the chapel of our Lady at Mendham.

In the chancel,

Claxton's crest, a side-long helmet, over it, on a torce, a porcupine or hedge-hog proper.

Claxton, gul. a fess between three porcupines arg. A coat of pretence on a canton. Barry of 10. On a canton three martlets.

Mr. Thomas Claxton, Merchant of London, died 21 July, 1681, 40.

Mrs. Mary, 2d Daughter of Mr. Ralph Claxton and Elizabeth his Wife, of Pulham St. Mary, 30 Jan. 1680, 18. Sarah their 3d Daughter, 22 June, 1681, 15.

In the nave,

Orate pro anima Jsabelle Drake, cuius anime propricietur dues, Amen.

On a north window, gul. three birds or.

On an old seat in the chancel, two shields, on one a cross, on the other three roses.

In the nave towards the chancel.

John Rede, Gent. ob. 5 Nov. 1721, 52.

Samuel Son of John Rede, Gent. 7 Aug. 1712, 15. Rede's arms and crest, a buck's head erased. Eliz. Wife of John Reed, Gent. 20 Jan. 1719, 47. Simon their son 1712, 15.

Rob. Prentice, Gent. died in 1639, and gave 5l. to each of the Pulhams. 20l. to Mr. Sayer rector there, and 1l. to Starston poor. He bare

Party per chevron or and sab. three greyhounds current counterchanged.

Susan Wife of Sam. Prentice Gent. 16 July 1710. 73.

On a mural monument on the south side of the church, towards the east end,

In a Vault near this Place, lie interred, Peter Rosier, Esq; who was High-Sheriff of the County of Norfolk in 1737, and died at Pulham St. Mary Magdalen, Oct. 18, 1743, in the 81st Year of his Age. And also Esther Rosier and Philip Rosier Gent. (his Brother and Sister). Esther died July 26, 1721, æt. 54. Philip July 11, 1732, æt. 68. To whose Memory this Monument was erected, by the Direction of the said Peter Rosier.

Palgrave, az. a lion rampant arg. a crescent for difference, as a second branch of the Palgrave family.

Crest, a loin's head erased guardant arg.

Mr. Thomas Palgrave, obijt sexto Die Martij A. D. 1638.

Cujus ossa et Cineres sub hoc Lapide Requiescunt.

He was son of Thomas Palgrave, Esq. and Eliz. his wife, which Thomas was buried here in 1545.

Mr. John Palgrave, ob. 27 Sept. 1687. Mrs. Christian Palgrave his Wife, Nov. 28, 1693.

Mrs. Jone, Wife of Mr. Thomas Palgrave, Sep. 18, 1678.

Mary Wife of Thomas Palgrave, and Daughter of Robert Howard of Norwich, Apr. 27, 1690, 35. And by her lies Thomas Palgrave her Husband.

Thomas Son of Tho. Palgrave of Norwich, Jan. 20, 1700, 14.

John his Brother, 1700, 16.

For the Whipples of Pulham, see vol. i. p. 193.

On a neat mural monument against the east end of the north isle, with Palgrave's arms,

H. S. E. Gulielmus Palgrave M. D. de Gippovico in Comitatû Suffolciensi. Gulielmi Palgrave, de hoc Pago Generosi Filius, ob. Sept. 14°, A. D. MDCCXLII. Æt. 49. Liberi ejus Johannes et Dorothea Infantes, Morte abrepti hic sepeliuntur.

On a marble in the south isle, are the arms and crest of Palgrave.

Thomas Palgrave, Esq; sometime Sheriff and Member of Parliament for the City of Norwich, in the Reign of the late Queen Anne of ever Blessed Memory: He gave an hundred Pounds to a Charity School in the Parish of St. Peter Mancroft in Norwich (wherein he was born) towards the Education of poor Children, according to the Liturgie of the Church of England. ob. Aug. 7. 1726, æt. 84, six Months.

In the same isle against the south wall, towards the east end, by Rosier's monument, is another, with an eagle rising arg. for a crest, and the arms of Cornwaleis impaling, Barry of eight or and az. over all a bend arg. quartering arg. a pelican in her nest or, vulning herself, proper.

In Memory of John Stanhawe late of this Parish, Gent. who was buried near to this Place Sept. 19, 1729, aged 54. His first Wife was Margaret the Daughter of John Cornwaleis, Esq; of Wingfield in the County of Suffolk, by whom he had no issue. His 2d Wife was Mary the Dr. of Robert Futter Gent. late of Selton in this County, who was interred near this Place, May 24, 1729, aged 45, by whom he had 3 Drs. Tabitha, Mary, and Susan, who are still surviving.

There are three hatchments in the church, 1, Palgrave; crest, a lion's head erased arg. 2, Howman impales Palgrave. Motto, Labile quod opportunum.

3, Palgrave impales Burton, Memento mori.

On an altar tomb on the south side of the churchyard. Party per saltier, on a fess three de-lises.

Sam. Matchet Gent. 1732, 81. Mary his Wife, 1740, 80 (fn. 20)

Pulham signifies the village of pools, (fn. 21) or standing waters: the earliest account we meet with of this town, is, that it belonged to Waldchist, a Saxon, who forfeited all that he had to King Edmund, who was lord of it, and left it to King Etheldred or Edred his brother, (fn. 22) who gave it to Eadgive his mother; at whose death it reverted to him, and at his death went to King Edwy, and after him to King Edgar his brother, who sold it to Wlstan, and at his death to Ethelwold Bishop of Winchester, (fn. 23) for 40l. and he gave it to the abbey of St. Etheldred, or Audry, at Ely, from which, Thurwerth seized it; (fn. 24) but that abbey recovered it, and was in full possession at the Norman conquest: the survey then taken tells us, that in the Confessor's time it belonged to St. Audry, and had 15 carucates of land, 60 villeins, 25 bordars, and 7 servants, who were to manage the three carucates that were in demean, or belonging to the manor-house; the wood then maintained 600 swine; and there belonged to the manor-house, a mill, 3 working horses, 11 young cattle, 40 hogs, 50 sheep, 40 goats, 4 hives of bees; and the whole manor was worth 8 pounds, and at the Conquest was risen to 15 pounds a year: the town was then 2 miles long, and a mile broad, and paid 30d. to the geld or tax, and was exempt from the jurisdiction of the half hundred of Earsham, as be longing to the church of St. Audry, (fn. 25) though now it is reckoned among the towns in the Duke of Norfolk's liberty, (fn. 26) as being in Earsham half hundred. In 1249, it appears from the Plea Rolls, (fn. 27) that there was a weekly Wednesday market here; and in 1250, the Bishop of Ely, on which this see was settled at its first erection, had a charter of freewarren throughout the manor: in 1277, there was a general extent made, of all the lands, manors, and revenues, belonging to Ely see; (fn. 28) when the jury sworn for this manor, (fn. 29) returned upon oath, that the town was in the free hundred of Earl Rog. Bigod, called Eresham half hundred, to which the Bishop's bailiff ought to do suit from hundred court to hundred court, or pay two shillings every Michaelmas day, at the will of the Earl or his bailiffs, who might choose either the suit or the money; that the advowson of the church of St. Mary the Virgin at Pulham, with the chapel of St. Mary Magdalen there, belonged to the Bishop of Ely, with the market held by the said chapel; the profits of which, were then worth 3 marks and an half per annum, the profits of the fairs held there being included; (fn. 30) the two windmills with the suit of the tenants thereto, worth 5l. a year; there were 685 acres and an half, by the lesser hundred, in demean, and every acre was worth 15d. a year; half of it was to be ploughed yearly by 4 ploughs of six oxen and two scotts; there were also 36 acres and an half of meadow land, worth 4s. an acre; 33 acres of several pasture (or Lammas land) worth 18d. an acre; every acre of this manor, according to its custom, being measured by the perch of 18 feet and an half. There was a park of 60 acres, a wood called Grishaw of 100 acres, the manor-house stock was 14 cows, a free bull, 40 hogs, and a free boar, and 200 sheep; all the lands but the several, and commons, were whole year land. The commons of Nortwood Green and Westwood, were common to the whole town only; (fn. 31) but notwithstanding, nobody could cut wood on them but the lord, who had 27l. 12s. 3d. 3q. yearly rents in money; 20s. 8d. q. for hedernwich, the schervesilver uncertain, because it is more or less yearly; 36 quarters 6 bushels and 2 pecks of foddercorn, six score and eight hens, 597 eggs by the great hundred, 267 acres to be ploughed in winter, the ploughing of each acre being worth 4d. and 420 acres to be ploughed between Candlemas and Whitsuntide, worth 8l. 15s. and from the several tenants every year, 13335 days works and an half, and the fourth part of a day's work; there was also 30 acres purchased by the Bishop of Maud de Pulham. (fn. 32).

Among the freemen of the manor, Sir Adam de Tifteshale or Titshale, Knt. held 36 acres; Sir Roger de Thirkelby 20 acres and two men; the parson of Pulham one meadow, and the prior of Ely 30 acres, late Osbert de Stradesete's; Richard de Kittleshaw two carucates; Will. Howard divers lands, &c. and the whole was divided into four letes or divisions, at each of which, the tenants inhabiting the several divisions appeared; East or Up-lete, West-lete, Suth-lete, and Gidlardes, or North-lete.

In 1286, the Bishop of Ely claimed the following privileges to this manor, and they were allowed in Eire, viz. infangenthef, outfangenthef, view of frankpledge, assise of bread and ale, pleas de namio vetito, and to have a prison, and carry and re-carry his prisoners any where before the King's justices; and to have the fines and amerciaments of all his tenants, and all the goods and chattels of felons and fugitives, with the return of writs, and all other liberties belonging to his see of Ely, together with free-warren, according to Henry the Third's charter.

In 1431, Pulham was returned to be within the liberty of the Bishop of Ely, and under the jurisdiction of his bailiff, Henry Sharyngton; it being held in demean of the King, as parcel of the Bishop's barony, and so continued till the first of Queen Elizabeth, and then it came to the Crown, by virtue of an exchange made with that see; and it continued there some time; it being above 102l. per annum, besides the woods, in 1558, but was soon leased out at 13l. 6s. per annum, and many of the woods and demeans granted to divers persons; but in 1609, the citizens of London held it in fee-farm, when the free and copyhold rents were 71l. 8s. 9d. per annum, and the farm of the lands 37l. 10s. 7d. but that lease being out in 1622, Richard Ashworth, senior, Esq. accounted with Charles Prince of Wales, on whom King James I. had settled it, for 107l. 2s. 4d. in rents, and 18l. 3s. for fines of lands, and perquisites of courts: (fn. 33) and about 1631, it was sold by King Charles I. and the chamber of London (the advowson being excepted) to divers tenants; and in the year 1679, was divided into 30 parts, one part in 1633, belonged to John Bradshaw. Esq. Windsor herald, who lived in Southolt in Suffolk, and died there the same year, and gave his part to John his eldest son, paying an annuity of 10l. to William, his second son: this part came afterwards to Thomas Fauconberge, who married Margaret, daughter of the said John Bradshaw, and Margaret his wife: his will is proved in 1655, and left his part of Pulham manor, to Dorothy his wife for life, then to his children, Thomas, Robert, Laurence, Charles, and Henry.

About 1681, Thomas Sayer, justice of the peace, John Sayer, Gent. Charles Daveney, William Palgrave, Maurice Kendal of Grey's Inn and Bukenham Nova, Gents. and others, were returned as lords. But now the whole is vested in

John Sayer of Eye, Esq. the profits of one-fifteenth part being employed as an endowment to the schoolmaster, who keeps school in St. James's chapel here.

This John is descended from an ancient family resident at Pulham for several hundred years; and the old register, which begins in 1539, shows us, that it was as numerous as any I have met with, there being great number of their births, marriages, and burials, entered there: and it appears, that the several branches have been all of them considerable owners in this parish: I find, they have spelt their names differently in different ages, as Sawyer, Sayer, and Saer, which last I take to be their proper name, for Saer or Saier, was anciently a common christian name; but I shall only trace here, that branch from which the present lord of the town is descended.

John Sayer, senior, of Pulham St. Mary, was born in 1493, and was buried in 1583, in the 90th year of his age; by his first wife he had

Thomas Sayer, (fn. 34) who married Christian Palgrave of PulhamMarket in 1557, and John Sayer, who married Margaret Thurketel; and by Rose Skete, widow, his second wife, he had

John Sayer, Gent. who in 1607, married Mrs. Anne Pullin; their son,

John Sayer of Pulham, Gent. was born in 1617, and married Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Dunston of Worlingworth in Suffolk, Gent. who was buried at Pulham St. Mary in 1653. Their son,

Thomas Sayer, Gent. of Pulham, married Muriel, daughter of Richard Browne of Sparkes in Tacolneston, by Muriel Knevet his wife, and had Mr. Edward Sayer, apothecary in Norwich, Mr. Daniel Sayer, attorney at law in Harleston, younger sons; besides their eldest son

John Sayer of Eye, Esq. one of his Majesty's justices of the peace for the county of Norfolk, who is now lord of this manor; but hath no issue by Dorothy his wife, who was sister to the Rev. Mr. Thomas Burton, vicar of Halifax in Yorkshire, and is still living.

SAYER. (fn. 35) BURTON.

The ancient survey of this county, hath this,

In this town, (for both Pulhams make but one town,) is only the manor of Pulham, commonly called Pulham manour, which heretofore belonged to the Bishoprick [or church] of Ely, even from the time of the Saxons, about 800 years since, until the reign of Queen Elizabeth, who took it into her own hands with divers other manors, and is now in possession of the King [Jac. I.] as her next and immediate heir: the King keepeth court and leet, and hath in it, weyf, felons goods, &c. hauking, hunting, fishing, &c. The extraordinary service of the tenants is reveship, heywardship, and cullyer-ship; whoever are cullyers or collectors, gather the rents of the other tenants, and pay them to the reeves, and they at the audit to the receiver; whoever is heyward calleth the court; there is one that holds his lands by cornage, (fn. 36) that is, blowing a horn in the morning at the beginning of the court: the fines are certain of the copyhold lands, at six pence an acre. (fn. 37) This town hath the privileges of Ely, as all other manors, holden by the same bishoprick; none may arrest within their limits, besides their own bailiff, &c. There was a market kept for a long time in Pulham-Magdalen, (the cross yet remaineth,) purchased by the church of Ely in the time of the Saxons, but now altogether decayed, by reason of the vicinity of Harleston, a hamlet to Redenhall, whose market is on the same day.

There was formerly a manor here, called


Which had its rise in 1258, when Walter de Hemenhale confirmed all right to Hugh Bishop of Ely; the said Bishop conveying to him 200 acres of land, 5 marks rent, 40 acres of wood, and 20 acres of meadow; and in 1308, it extended into Redenhall.

In 1321, Sir Ralf de Hemenhale was lord, and John de Hemenhale was his son and heir; but in 1389, Sir Robert de Hemenhale, son of Ralf owned it, and settled it on Sir George Felbrigge, Knt. and others, his trustees.

In 1258, Ric de Ketleshawe, held of the Bishop many lands and rents; and Sir Roger de Thirkelby, in 1248, had a messuage, 110 acres of land, and divers rents, which he granted to Robert of St. Ives. In 1342, John Sturmy had a capital messuage and 40 acres, and divers rents, which he held of the Bishop of Ely, and Robert was his son and heir; and in 1351, John Cooper and Alice his wife had a free tenement, 120 acres of land, 20 acres of meadow, 10 acres of wood, and 15s. rent in Pulham; all which he recovered against John Cursoun and Catherine his daughter; and in 1370, Alice his wife, who was daughter of Ric. de Ketleshawe or Keteleshale, in Norfolk, inherited his estate here, and in the year 1425, Sir John de Heveningham, senior, Knt. died seized of all these manors, free tenements, and capital messuages and rents, called then, the manor of

Pulam, Hemenhale's, Vauxes's, Sturmin's, and Sturmer's,

In Pulham, Riveshale, Dickleburgh, and Titeshale, in Norfolk.

But being all purchased in, long since, there is no such manor now existing. The demeans or manor-house, called Vance's or Vauce's in Pulham, with a farm at Rushall, formerly part of the said manors, is settled for the propagation of the Gospel in New-England.

The dean and chapter of Ely, have a small manor in this town, called

Winston's cum Pulham,

The quitrents of which are only 17s. 10d. per annum; it formerly belonged to the Prior of Ely, who held part of it, of the gift of Osbert de Stradsete.

For Ric. de Boyland's lands here, see vol. i. p. 57.

Pulham-market hall is a good old house, enclosed with a high wall of brick embattled, and was formerly the mansion-house, of the Percies, a younger branch of the Northumberland family; in 1543, Mary, daughter of Henry Persy, Gent. was buried in St. Mary's church at Pulham: in 1564, Alice Percy was married to John Bukenham, and it seems, as if another daughter was married to a Brampton, for this estate was owned by William Brampton, a strenuous man on the King's side in Kett's rebellion, by whom a great part of the present building was erected, and it continued in that family, till a William Brampton sold it to Philip Rosier, who left it to Peter Rosier his brother, late high-sheriff of Norfolk, who died here in 1743. (See p. 397.)

The arms of the Earl of Northumberland, and those of Brampton impaling Leventhorp, are in the windows.

From the old Register of Pulham St. Mary.

1559, John Blomefield single-man, and Eleanor Holland singlewoman, married.

1626, John Blomefield of Starston, and Christian Spendlowe, married.

1550, Paul son of Peter Bedingfield born. Sir Will. Baldwin and Audry Estowe, married.

1585, Thomas Crane, Gent. aged 70. 1587, Alice his widow aged 70, both buried in the church. 1594, Ric. son of Ric. Crane, Gent. buried. 1606, Will. son of Ric. Crane and Margery his Wife, buried.

1548, Tho. son of John Preston, Gent. born. 1551, Roland another son.

1572, Mr. Robert Morland, a proctor for the house of Bury, buried.

1574, Will. Sparham, an old man and zealous Protestant, buried.

1616, Tho. le Grey, buried.

1607, Margaret daughter of Aslack Lany, Esq. and Eliz. his wife, baptized.

1607, Eliz. Lanye vidua Generosa nuper Uxor Johannis Lany de Cratfield in com. Suff. Generosi, Filia Willi. Aslack, ac ultima antiqui cognominis de Aslak, sepulta fuit die xvij° Junij.

1618, Eliz. daughter of Robert Laurence, Gent. and Eliz. his wife, bapt. 2 Dec. buried in 1618. 1619, Will. their son, born. 1622, Eliz. their daughter.


  • 1. Lib. 18.
  • 2. See vol. iii. p. 557.
  • 3. MSS. penes P. L. N.
  • 4. Lib. Depos. 211, 1547, about tithe calves, pigs, &c. due in kind.
  • 5. 1639, 10s. paid to Mr. Sayer then rector, for the mortuary of Robert Prentice, Gent.
  • 6. See Newcourt's Repert.
  • 7. Godw. Catal. p. 198.
  • 8. Claus .29 E. III. M. 9. Rymer, vol. v. fo. 827. Godwin Cat. 269.
  • 9. Willis's Hist. of the Cathedrals, vol. ii. f. 373.
  • 10. All the family of the Fastolfs, except Sir John, bare three escallops arg. on the bend.
  • 11. Willis's Cath. vol. ii. fo. 268.
  • 12. Ibid. fo. 381.
  • 13. John Crane, an aunceant Bacheller of Divinitie, an erneste Professor of Christ in the Tyme of Queene Marie, a trew, a constaunt, and a devout Follower of Christ unto his Deathe, sometyme Parson of Feltwell, Tittishall, and Pulham Utraque, at once; a Man of greate Learninge, muche Wysdome, and noe less Gravitie : For his manifold Vertues reverenced and honoured of many, loued of all Men, and hated of None (except it were for his good Deeds, as was Abel of his brother Caine) being borne in this Parishe, and continewinge Parson thereof by the space of twentie Years and more, and dyed the 3d Day of May Ao 1583, to the great Grief of diverse, and to the extreme Loss among the Poore of his Countrey, unto whose Wants he did plentifully by Gyfts, and abundantly by lending Supply and Minister, without Receit of any Commodity therefore; was very solemnly, and with much Lamentation, buried 14 May, aged 69 Years. Script. per me Edw. Slyn. sometyme his Mynister. E Registro de Pulham Sce. Marie Virg. 1609, William Robkin, minister and batcheler of art, buried 30 Oct. 1614, John Reyner, curate.
  • 14. Pulham Beate Marie Virginis, et See. Marie Magdalene rectoria. Dominus Rex patronus ejusdem. Daniel Sayer, A. M. licenciatus predicator, estimatio 33l.6s.8d. inde decima 3l.6s.8d. primitie 30l. procurationes episcopi 8s. 4d. sinodalia 4s. 8d. procurationes archidiaconi 7s. 7d. ob. Revis. Archidiac. Norff. Ao 1630.
  • 15. Gascoigne Welde, Esq. by Anne, eldest daughter of Joseph Hall (see vol. iii. p. 581) Bishop of Norwich, had one son and two daughters, (see p. 87) of which, Mary the eldest married to Will. Starkey, as above; and they had only one daughter, Mary, married to John Jermy of Bayfield, Esq. whose only son William Jermy, Esq. married to Eliz. only sister and heiress to William Lord Richardson, and is now (1748) high sheriff of Norfolk, (see the pedigree at vol. ii. p. 449.)
  • 16. See for her at vol. ii. p. 429.
  • 17. See Brockdish.
  • 18. See the just character of this good man, in Godwin's Catalogue, p. 161, 277.
  • 19. Regr. Betyns in Archiv. Epi. Norw. fo. 131.
  • 20. Robert Masters, clerk, and Eliz. Matchet, married 1581.
  • 21. Pulla, a pool or lake of standing water, whence a pulk is a small pond or hole of standing water.
  • 22. See vol. ii. p. 31.
  • 23. Æthelwaldus fuit Episcopus Saxonum occidentalium ab anno 963, ad annum 984.
  • 24. Diripuit etiam idem [Thurwerthus] Deo Sancta et Ætheldryda, Pulnam, quam Æthelwoldus Episcopus emerat a Rege Edgaro pro xl. libris, quas terras, viz. Nordwalde [Northwold] et Pulnam, per transgressionem amisit Waldchist, et omnia quæ habebat, tempore Edmund Regis, et fuerant in manu Regis Edmundi et Æthelredi, quousque ipse Æthelredus, dedit easdem terras Eadgivæ matri suæ, post ejus mortem adquisivit easdem terras Wlstanus a Rege Ædgaro, sed et Edgiva et Wlstanus acquisierunt et emerunt plures terras et plura bona, quam unquam Waldchist habuisset, et his duobus manerijs addiderunt, hæc igitur duo maneria prædictus Thurwerthus obtinuit. Hist. Eliens. R. Li. cap. 54. p. 436. Gale. vol. i. Script. Britt. Sax. Anglo-Dan.
  • 25. Pullaham tenuit Sancta Aldreda T. R. E. pro xv. car. terre semper lx. villani, xxv. bord. vii. serv. iii. car. in dom. tunc xx. car. hominum mo xvi. xvi. acr. prati, tunc silva DC. porc. mo ccc. et i. mol. iii. runcin. xi. anim. xl. porc. 1. oves, xl. capr. iiii. vasa apum, tunc valuit viii. libr. mo. xv. habet ii. leug. in longo, et i. leug. in lato, et de gelto xxx.d. (Doms. fo. 189.) T. R. E. habuit Stigandus socam et sacam de hoc dimidio hundreto (sc. de Hersam) preter Torp, Sancti Edmundi, et preter Pulham Sancte Aldredre. (Doms. fo. 53.)
  • 26. See vol. i. p. 237, 8.
  • 27. Placita Corone 34 H. III. Rot. 13 D.
  • 28. Regr. Ely. Bib. Cot. Claudius C. ii. fo. 209, 221. Dug. Mon. vol. i. fo. 94. The extent of Ely bishoprick, MSS. in Caius College library in Cambridge, fo. 222. Incipit Liber de Inquisicionibus. &c. tempore Hugonis de Balsam Episcopi Eliensis, fo. 19. This manor, before the erection of the bishoprick, was fixed to find two weeks provisions for Ely convent. (Godwin's Catalogue of Bishops, page 253, printed in English at London 1615.)
  • 29. Robert de Bois and 27 other tenants were sworn on the jury.
  • 30. Besides the wakes and fairs heretofore held on the days of the dedication of the church and chapel, there was one held on Wednesday in Ascension week: this only now remains, and is lately altered, being now always kept on the Monday in Ascension week.
  • 31. This manor extended into Titshall. See vol. i. p. 204, 5, and Uphall manor in Titshall extended hither; ibid. p. 207.
  • 32. 1304, Alice, daughter of Nic. de Pulham, had a good estate here. In 1481, died brother John Pulham, a learned Austin-friar, of Yarmouth convent.
  • 33. King Car. I. in recompense for 229, 897l. 2s. already advanced to King James I. and himself, and for 12,000l. to be advanced by the chamber of London, for which he was to assure lands of the clear yearly value of 1249l. 6s. 6d. among other alienations of crown lands, did grant to the mayor and corporation of the city of London, the manor of Pulham, which was leased by James I. Ao Reg. 17, to Sir Henry Hobart, Knight and Baronet, Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, and other feoffees, together with the royalty, and all that lately belonged to the see of ELY; and it was assigned to Anne his wife as part of her jointure, with all the letes, rents, free and copy; franchises, courts, fines, market, fairs, tolls, customs, amerciaments, piepowder-courts, the chapel (now the school-house) together with all piccage, stallage, chattels of felons, outlaws and fugitives, except the advowson, mines, knights fees, wards, marriages, forests, chaces, and parks stocked with deer; to be held of the Crown, as of the manor of East. Greenwich, by fealty, in free soccage, and not by knight's service. In 6ta. parte originalium de Ao ivo Reg. Car. I. Rotulo primo in Sccario ex parte Rememb. Thesaur. remanen. Examined by John Brampton 1656. N. B. There are above 6000 acres of land in the parishes of Pulham St. Mary and St. Mary Magdalen.
  • 34. In 1600, Tho. Sayer, Gent. of Pulham, purchased an estate here of John Prettiman, Gent. and others, which extended into Pulham, Rushall, and Dickleburgh.
  • 35. For the crest see p. 331.
  • 36. The estate held by cornage is about 30l. per annum all in a hedge, now owned by Dorothy, late widow Baker, now the wife of Robert Jermy of Pulham, there belongs to it liberty to keep hounds, and follow the game any where in the manor; the service is performed at this time, by one attending constantly to blow the horn before the court begins, for which the lord pays 4d. and gives him his dinner; this was the service as the lord's huntsman: and there are 7 acres held by being my lord's hangman, William son of Adam Akeman held 7 acres by divers services, all which were to be remitted, whenever a thief was hanged in the manor, he being obliged by his tenure to hang him in lieu of all service for that year.
  • 37. In the 9th year of King Car. I. there passed a decree in Chancery, by which the fines of all the complainants lands (and of no other tenants of the manor) all which are specified at large in the decree, were fixed at 6d. an acre, 2s. each messuage, and 1s. each cottage, built or to be built, and these lands and houses on request made in court, are demisable for 21 years, or any term under, on paying half a fine as before stated; these tenants are not to forfeit for waste, and may fell timber, &c. without license, and use the soil at their own will and pleasure; but the rest of the tenants of the manor hold their lands at the lord's will. The lands descend to the eldest son, and it gives no dower. The commons belonging to the manor are Northwood-Green, containing about 30 acres; Hadeshage-Green about 36 acres; Westwood Common, &c. On all which, the tenants common with great and small beasts. And the lete fee or common fine of each parish, is 20s. Among the ancient customs of the manor I find, that the copyholders were forced to grind at one of the lord's mills, which occasioned the two mills to be let at 5l. per annum in those days, the tithe being allowed out of it. They were obliged to pay a fine to the lord for license or leave to marry their sons and daughters: and to pay childwite if they had any bastards; and could not sell an ox or male colt of their own breed, without leave of their lord; the market and fairs then let at 3 marks and an half a year; and divers of the tenants paid ploughshares for the fines of their lands.