An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 8. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.
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BELAUGH, or BELOW, or BELEGA,
Bespeaks a fine Water, or a River.
Gingon held this lordship under Alan Earl of Richmond, of which Ralph Earl of Norfolk was lord in King Edward's reign, and afterwards deprived on his rebellion against the Conqueror. It contained 4 carucates of land, 9 villains, and 7 borderers, 2 carucates in demean, 4 among the tenants, &c. 6 acres of meadow, paunage for 30 swine, a mill, I runcus, or horse for carriage, 8 cows, &c. 100 sheep, 3 skeps of bees, and 12 socmen had 2 carucates of land, &c.; a freeman had 30 acres of land, a carucate, and an acre of meadow. It was valued with Bec, a beruite belonging to this town, at 3l. before the conquest; at the survey at 5l. was one leuca long, and half a one broad, and paid 4½d. gelt. (fn. 1)
In the 6th of King Richard I. Theobald Walter was petent in a fine, and William Hervie, tenent of the 3d part of a knight's fee in this town, and that of Boxted in Suffolk, conveyed to Theobald, who reconveyed it to William and his heirs, and the said William released his right in all the lands which were Hervey Walter's, grandfather of Theobald: and in the 33d of Henry III. Theobald le Botiller was found to die seized, and his heir was aged 6 years, this Theobald was ancestor to the Butlers Dukes of Ormond.
John de Pakenham, by fine levied, purchased Ao. 55 of Henry III. of Robert Walerand, the manor of Belowe, with the homages and services of the prioress of Campese in Suffolk, and of William Hervey, their heirs and successours, for lands in Perham and Boxted, in the said county, to be held of Robert and his heirs, by one penny yearly rent, and in the first of Edward I. by an extent of the 3d part of it, valued at 6l. one penny, it was found to be held by Maud, wife of Robert Walerond. Escheat.
In the 15th of Edward I. Edmund de Hemegrave and Isabel his wife, claimed free warren, view of frank pledge, assise of bread and beer, in this manor, held by one knight's fee, of Robert Lord Tateshale, and he of the Earl of Britain, but in the 20th of the said King, John, son of William, son of John de Pakenham, for 300l. sterling, settled this lordship with that of Pakenham in Suffolk, on Edmund de Pakenham and his heirs. Edmund was lord in right of Mary his wife, daughter of Edmund Comyn.
The said Mary, then widow of Sir Edmund, died possessed of it in the 35th of Edward III. and Eufemia was her sister and heir, who entered on it, and alienated it to Sir Ralph de Hemenhale, Sir John de Wingfield, Knt. Gilbert de Debenham, &c. but Sir Roger Elmrugge and Elizabeth his wife had also an interest herein, she being sister and heir of John de la Beche, son and heir of Sir William de la Beche, by Eufemia, who also died in the 35th of the said King, and Elizabeth sold her right or moiety about the same time to Sir Ralph Hemenhale, she survived Sir Roger her husband, who died in the 49th of Edward III. sans issue. Sir Ralph was lord in the 42d of that King, and Sir Richard his son in the reign of Richard II. but in the 5th of Henry IV. Sir William Bardwell, who married Margaret, daughter and heir of—De Pakenham, and Robert Bardwell, 2d son of Sir William, in 1439. At an assise in the 4th of Henry IV. it was found that Hervey de Pakenham was seized of the manor of Belagh and died sans issue, and that the said Sir William and Margaret his wife, as cousin and heir of the said Hervey, viz. daughter and heir of John, son of Theobald, son of Thomas, brother of Edmund, father of the said Hervy.
In the 4th year of King Edward IV. Elizabeth, widow of John Harleston of Shimpling, in Suffolk, died seized of this manor, of that of Woodhall here, and in Billingford.
By an inquisition taken at Norwich, November 15, in the 21st of Henry VIII. on the death of Sir Richard Fitz Lewis, who died July 12, Ao. 20 of the said King, he was found to die seized of it, held of the honour of Richmond: he married Alice, daughter of - - - - - Harleston, by whom he had John, his son and heir, who died before him, and Ela his daughter and heir, married to John Mordaunt, son and heir of Sir John Mordaunt Lord Mordaunt. The tradition is that John, son and heir of Sir Richard, with his wife, were burnt in their bed on the wedding night at West-Horndon in Essex.
John Lord Mordant, who married Ela abovementioned, by his will dated September 20, 1549, gave to his son Edmund this manor, with that of Billing ford, but Edmund dying young, it came to his elder brother, Lewis Lord Mordant.
After this Clement Corbet, LL. D. was Lord Chancellor of Norwich, and by his wife Elizabeth, daughter of — Kemp, he left a son and 5 daughters.
John Bendish, Esq. purchased it of the Corbets: this John was son of Thomas Bendish of Wichingham Magna, by Mary his wife, daughter of—Dersley of Catlidge in Suffolk, who was son of John Bendish of Wichingham (by Audrey his wife, daughter of Thomas Hervey of - - - - -, in Essex, relict of Francis Polsted) son of John Bendish of Steeple Bumsted in Essex, by Margery, daughter of Thomas Crawley of Loughts in Essex. John Bendish aforesaid, who purchased this manor, lived here, and married Elizabeth, daughter of William Edwards of Wisbeach in the Isle of Ely, Gent. and left a son and heir, John, born in 1664, in which year Elizabeth died.
The tenths were 4l. 4s.—Deducted 24s.
The Church was dedicated to the Virgin Mary, and was appropriated to the priory of Butley in Suffolk, by John of Oxford Bishop of Norwich: it was a rectory valued at 6 marks, and paid Peter-pence 5d. ob. Walter Ly Hert Bishop of Norwich certified that there was no vicarage, and that the priory paid to the King for a whole tenth 8s. in 1461. The abbot of Nutley had a portion of tithe valued at 10s.
The church has a nave, and a chancel, and there is one bell.
In the nave a gravestone,
In memory of John Bendish, late of Bylaugh-Hall, Esq. and of Sarah his wife, only daughter of Sam. Walton, of Spalding in Lincolnshire, Gent. who died 1707, aged 43, and by her last will and testament appointed Anne, daughter of Thomas Edwards, late of Wisbeach, Esq, her sole executrix, who as a testimony of her love and gratitude to her deceased friends, erected this monument.
On a gray marble, the portraiture of a knight in complete armour, and his lady in brass,
Orate p. aia. Dni. Joh. Curson, militis, qui ob, 20 die mensis Januarij in festo die Fabiani et Sebastiani Ao Dni. 1471, ac p. aia. Dne. Joh. consortis sue que obt. die mens. - - - -, Ao. Dni. 14 - - - -, quor. aiab; &c. bis arms tore off, over her head, - - - - - - -, on a chevron, three boars heads couped.
Against the chancel south wall, on a marble monument, the arms of Corbet, or, a raven proper, impaling Kemp, gules, three garbs in a bordure ingrailed, or;
Ad pedem hujus monumenti jacet, cum Elizabethâ uxore, vonerabilis nuper vir Dus. Clemens Corbet, quam parvis cancellis, animi dum vixit magni cancellarius, sed et qualis inter vivos fuerat, viator, paucis accipe, unius uxoris maritus, quam merito dilexit unice, ex quâ unius filij, quinq; filiarum pater evadit, et sic p' cepit qui in memoriam eorum, hoc monumentum extrui curavit, Samuel Corbet.
Under this stone lye the bodies of Dr. Clemt. Corbet, who died 28, May 1652, and Elizab. his wife, who dyed July 17, 1644.
In memory of John Bendysh, Esq. who depd. Janu. 25, 1676, Eliz. his wife, who depd. July 17, 1664, with the arms of Bendish, impaling, a fess, ermine between three mullets, - - - -, Edwards.
Frances Curson buried in the church, in 1542: Audrey Curson, in 1544: John Curson, Esq. in 1545.