An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 8. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.
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This village, now accounted part of the hundred of Clavering, was part of the hundred of Hensted, at the grand survey; where we find this account of it: Alnoht, a freeman of Archbishop Stigand, was lord in King Edward's reign, and on his deprivation the Conqueror seized on it, and Godric his steward took care of it for him. In Alnoht's time, there was one carucate of land, with 12 villains, and one borderer, and 6 servi, 2 carucates in demean, and 3 among the tenants, paunage for 40 swine, and 2 acres of meadow, 4 cows, &c. with 80 sheep, valued then at 40s. at the survey at 60s. was 6 furlongs long, and 4 broad, and paid 12d. gelt. (fn. 1)
It remained in the Crown till King William II. gave it to William de Albini his butler, ancestor of the Earls of Arundel.
A family took their name from this town, (being lords of it,) according to the custom of former ages, and was enfeoffed thereof by William de Albini.
In the 9th of King John, Roger de Hoo enjoyed it, and then paid 10 marks for the King's favour, and his land that was seized for beating the King's servants; Ralph de Hoo was living in the 34th of Henry III. and in the 44th Miles, son of Ralph, conveyed by fine a messuage, 80 acres of land, 10 of wood, one of meadow, with a moiety of the advowson of the church of Hoo, to John de Hoo, who regranted it to Miles.
John de Syseland, parson of a moiety of this church, as a trustee, settled the manor of Howe on Ralph, son of Miles de How, and Joan his wife, in the 34th of Edward I. and in the 20th of Edward II. Miles de How, son of Ralph, grants his interest herein to Edward Rose of Yarmouth, William March of Stanhowe, and Walter, son of Ralph de Bintre, with the reversion of what Nicholas Hovell, and Joan his mother held in jointure for life; and soon after the said Edward, William, and Walter, grant it to Sir Walter de Norwich, and Catherine his wife. Sir Walter is said, in the 3d of Edward III. to hold it by suit of court, of the manor of Wymondham, then valued at 6l. 10s. per ann.
Sir John de Norwich, son and heir of Sir Walter, was lord and patron in the 4th of Edward III.
Sir John de Norwich, in the 31st of Edward III. had a charter of free warren, and in the 47th of that King, conveyed it to his feoffees, Sir John de Plays, &c. to settle it on his college of Mettingham in Suffolk, and in the 49th was settled by the Lady Catherine de Brews, cousin and heir of Sir John, and the said trustees accordingly.
On the 14th of April, Ao 33d of Henry VIII. the King granted this manor belonging to Mettingham college, to Sir Anthony Denny, one of his privy council, who died possessed of it, as appears by his will, dated March 10, Ao 3d of Edward VI. leaving Joan his wife, Henry his eldest son being 9 years old, and Anthony, Charles, and Edward, younger sons, also lord of Mettingham castle, the manors o Ilketeshale, Bramford, Sibeton, Wenhaston in Suffolk, &c.
In 1571, Anthony Denny, Esq. was lord, and William Denny in the 21st of James I. By an inquisition taken at Thetford, September 5, on the death of John Denny, Esq. he was found to die seized of it May 2, Ao 13 Charles I. and the advowson held of the King in capite, and Edward was his son and heir, (by Anne his wife,) aged 13.
Bury Abbey manor.
Another lordship in this town belonged to the abbey of Bury, and was part of the great manor of Lodne, which extended here. Baldwin, abbot of Bury, who lived in the reign of the Conqueror, enfeoffed Frodo his brother, of it, &c. and Gosceline de Lodne held it under Frodo. In this family it continued till Gosceline de Lodne, a descendant of the aforesaid Gosceline, dying without issue, his inheritance was divided among his 5 sisters and coheirs, (as may be seen at large in Loddon,) and this lordship, on a division, came to Emma, the fourth sister and coheir, who married Ralph de How, and was father of Reyner, who left two sons, Ralph and William; Ralph gave his part or moiety to his brother William, who was father of John de How, who in the 50th of Henry III. granted by fine to Magdalen, prioress of Carhoe, by Norwich, the advowson of a moiety of the church of St. Mary in this town.
Sir Richard de Boyland, the judge, and Maud his wife, purchased of — de Howe. In the 14th of Edward I. this manor, with lands, &c. in Shotesham, Framingham, and John de Boyland held it in the 9th of Edward II. and in the 4th of Henry IV. the abbot of Bury had a quarter of a fee, called Boyland's. Sir William de Norwich seems to be lord, and so was united to the other manor, and came to the Dennys.
The tenths were 3l. 2s.—Deducted 1l.
The Church of Howe is dedicated to St. Mary, and formerly consisted of 2 medieties, or rectories; one belonged to the manor of How, of the Arundel fee, the other, to Bury abbey fee: Ralph de How was lord and patron of the Arundel fee in the 34th of Henry III. and Miles his son in the 44th of that King.
In the reign of Edward I. Sir Ralph de Howe was patron, when this mediety was taxed at 6 marks and a half, and the rector had a manse with 30 acres of land: the Peter-pence were 12d. carvage 6d. ob.
After this, Miles Howe, son of Sir Ralph, was lord and patron, and granted it to Sir Walter de Norwich; and Sir Walter de Norwich was lord in the 3d of Edward III.
In 1322, Robert de Fuldene, by Richard Hovell and Joan his wife, and Lettice de Lodne.
1323, John de Thirston, by ditto.
1328, Gosceline de Bintre, by ditto.
1349, Robert de Harpele, by Sir John de Norwich.
1376, John Rumburgh, by Margaret, relict of Sir William de Norwich.
1385, Roger Attewell, by the Bishop, a lapse.
Sir John de How, lord and patron of the other mediety, or Bury fee, granted the advowson by fine Ao. 50 Henry III. to the priory of Carhow, and that priory had the patronage in the reign of Edward I. when it was taxed at 6 marks and a half, and the rector had a manse, and 30 acres of land
In 1306, John de Sisland occurs rector.
1313, Mr. William of St. Faith's by the prioress of Carhow:
1318, Walter de Thirston. Ditto.
1325, Mr. Robert de Curson. Ditto. William de Brokkeley, rector.
1346, John Smert. Ditto.
1351, Thomas de Melborn. Ditto.
1352, Robert le Zonge. Ditto.
1352, John de Steyneston. Ditto.
1355, Roger Perbroun. Ditto.
1358, John Clerk. Ditto.
1360, Thomas Whiting. Ditto.
1361, Shep. Gilbert. Ditto.
1365, Step. Kimberle. Ditto.
1365, Hugh de Thame. Ditto.
1366, Walter de Helbeck. Ditto.
1375, John de Standen. Ditto.
1376, William de Alleston. Ditto.
1405, John de Rumburgh. Ditto: both the rectories were at this time consolidated.
In 1603, John Gascoyn was rector, and returned 63 communicants, and the patronage was in John Denny, Esq who was succeeded by Thomas Plombe, rector.
John Eyre, A. M. instituted 1684, presented by the King, on a lapse.
Nathaniel Wadesworth died rector 1728, and Joseph Brett, then presented by the lady Elizabeth Hastings: Brett resigned in the said year.
Charles Wadsworth was presented by ditto.
The present valor is 13l. 17s. 4d. and is discharged.
The church is a single pile and a chancel, both covered with tiles, and has a round tower with one bell.
In the church were the lights of the crucifix, and St. Mary.
How signifies a rising ground, or a hall, as Houghton, Hougham.