Holt hundred: Bodham or Bodenham

Pages 366-369

An Essay Towards A Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Volume 9. Originally published by W Miller, London, 1808.

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Takes its name as seated in a fine winding valley; thus Bodeney in Norfolk, &c. At the survey Hugh de Montfort had the capital lordship, which Bund, a Saxon thane, was lord of, in the reign of the Confessor, consisting of two carucates of land, 17 villains, &c. and 4 borderers; there were then 2 carucates in demean, and 2 among the tenants, 2 acres of meadow, &c. 17 goats, and 2 socmen had 30 acres of land, with half a carucate, then valued at 20s. at the survey at 10s. it was 10 furlongs long, and 5 broad, and paid 12d. gelt, (fn. 1) and Ralph held it under his lord Hugh.

The descendants of this Ralph, according to the custom of that age, assumed the name De Bodham, and De Bosco de Bodham, from some wood near their seat.

Henry de Bosco de Bodham was lord in the 5th of King John, or held lands here in the 12th of Henry III. William, son of Philip de Bodham, was querent, in a fine, and William de Maynewarin and Alice his wife tenants of one knight's fee here, the dower of Alice, and mention is therein made of Oliva, widow of William de Bodham; and in the 34th of that King, William de Bodham was found to hold one Knight's fee, and was not a knight.

In the 52d of the said reign, William de Bodham sold one fee here, &c. to Roger de Thirkelby, with the advowson of the church, and 2 acres of land; Roger's brother, Walter de Turteby, or Thiskelby, and his heir, gave it to the priory of Langley, in Norfolk; the aforesaid William, also sold the greatest part of his lands, and kept only the lordship and demean lands about it, which lands Philip and Ralph his sons are said to have surrendered into the King's hands, for the use of Matthew de Gellham.

In the 55th of Henry III. a fine was levied between Matthew de Gelham, and Ralph de Unworth, of a messuage and one carucate of land granted to Roger, who regranted certain of the said lands, to Matthew for life: Roger de Hunworth appears to be lord in the 28th of Edward I. and heldone fee, paying 10s. per ann. castle guard to Dover, and 2s. hundred shot; in the 34th of that King, John was found to be his son and heir, and paid 100s. relief, he died in the 23d of Edward III. and Margaret his wife survived him, and William was found to be his son and heir, aged 11 years.

About this time the lordship seems to be divided. Simon de Bosco de Bodham sued Warine Thurkelby on account of 12 messuages, 118 acres of land, 64 of heath, 3 of pasture, with 5s. rent in this town, Baconsthorp, &c. but Warine recovered against him, in the 35th of Edward I. and a fine was levied in the 10th of Edward III. between Henry de Hauvile and Isabel his wife, querents, Thomas de Bosco, of Bodham, deforciant, of the lordship of Bodham, who settled it on Henry and Isabel for life, remainder to himself.

Thomas de Bodham and Elizabeth his wife conveyed by fine, in the 26th of that King, the fourth part of the manor, to John de Wesenham. John de Bodham was found to die seized of lands held of Dover castle, in the 34th of the said reign, as was Margaret Bodham in the 28th.

In the 39th of Edward III. William de Honeyworth died aged 26, and Catharine was his sister, aged 23: Margaret, wife of James de Rungeton, seems to be another sister; between these, their brothers inheritance was divided, and in the said year, the said James, and Margaret, conveyed to Will. de Tutington, and Edw. de Gresham, 2 messuages, several great parcels of land, and a fold-course in Bodham, and Baconsthorpe.

Three fines in the year following were levied—one between John Burnel, parson of Berningham Parva, &c. querents, Richard Colman and Emma his wife, deforciants of the 5th part of the manor of Bodham, settled on John, their trustee; and between Margaret, widow of John, son of Thomas de Bodham, holding a third part of two parts, and Alice, widow of Thomas de Bodham, holding a third part of a fifth part thereof.—The second fine was between Rob. Hereward of Aldeburgh, querent, and William de Wilby and Joan his wife, John de Merlee and Margaret his wife, deforciants, of two other fifth parts, then sold to Robert Hereward, quit of the heir of Joan, and Margaret, whereby Emma, and they two seem to be heirs of the manor, and likely daughters and coheirs of John, son of Thomas de Bodham, and that the whole interest came after to Hereward.

In the 7th of Henry IV. John Alte Bowre of Bodham died seized of lands and tenements, and paying guard fee to Dover castle, and Roger was his son and heir, aged 40 years; the said Roger was found to die possessed of a messuage, 28 acres of land, one of meadow, &c. 6 of heath, and 13s. 4d. rent, in Bodham, and West Beckham, held by the 4th part of a fee, and John Boure was his cousin and next heir.

In the reign of Edward IV. John Heydon, Esq. was lord, and died possessed of it; and on June 20, in the 37th of Henry VIII. messuages and lands here were granted to Robert Heydon, in which family it continued in 1616, when Sir Christopher Heydon presented to this church.

John Lang, Gent. was lord and patron in 1701, and then presented.

The tenths were 2l. 4s.—Deduct 14s.

Walter Giffard Earl of Bucks had also a manor here which went also along with his manor of Laringset, with one carucate of land, 9 borderers, 2 servi, one carucate in demean, and one among the tenants, &c. 2 acres of meadow, valued at 10s. in King Edward's time; at the survey at 30s. (fn. 2)

This came by marriage to the Earls of Clare.

Roger de Perers held here and in Laringset, &c. two fees of Petronilla de Nerford.

In the 7th of Edward II. for 4l. sterling, she granted the custody of all the lands of Thomas, son of Simon de Bosco of Bodham, a minor, to Roger de Gresham, which lands, &c. Cecilia, wife of Henry de Bosco, held in dower, in Bodham, and the lands, &c. which Thomas de Bosco, Emma de Bosco, and Grace de Bosco held there.

Thomas Hales held here, in Holt, Laringsete, &c. a fee of the Lord Ross, and Margaret de Nerford, in the 3d of Henry IV.

Edmund Mortimer Earl of March held in capite, in the 3d of Henry IV.

John Winter, in the 3d of Henry IV. held half a fee of the Earl of March, and in the 1st of Henry V. Edmund Winter, and Oliva his wife conveyed a moiety of this lordship to Roger Scot, Esq. and Roger Hunt.

The Church is dedicated to All-Saints, and is a rectory, formerly valued at 20 marks, and paid Peter-pence 12d. the present valor is 9l.


William de Wendling, (fn. 3) occurs rector about the 52d of Henry III. presented (as said) by the convent of Langley.

1270, John de St. Deneys instituted, (fn. 4) presented by the King.

Peter de Birston occurs rector in the 26th of Edward I.

1310, John de Langele, presented by the abbot, &c. of Langley.

John de Wasce occurs rector in the 13th of Edward II.

In the year 1339, on May 2, Anthony Bishop of Norwich appropriated it to the abbey of Langley when a vicarage was settled endowed with 10 acres of the demean land, tithe of wool, lamb, ducks, pidgeons, milk, calves, chickens, pigs, geese, foals, bees, and all titheable animals whatsoever, also of mills, fisheries, merchandise, hemp, flax &c. and in all oblations, burials, mortuaries, anniversaries, marriages, legacies to the altar, the tithe of hay and corn of 20 acres belonging to the religious, with an annual pension of 2 marks to be paid by the abbot and convent.

1339, John de Gresham, instituted vicar, presented by the abbot, &c

1349, John Gryme.

1364, James Smith, alias de Baconsthorp.

1374, John Howes.

1379, James Gatelee.

1412, John Candler.

1421, Hugh Clay.

1436, Robert Smith.

1440, Roger White.

1460, John Wryte, by the Bishop a lapse.

1498, John Barsham, rector, presented by Sir Henry Heydon; it does not appear how the the abbey parted with the advowson and appropriation.

1505, John Hendrye, by Sir John Heydon.

1509, Thomas Coke.

1515, Richard Warner.

1540, Robert Inglot, by Sir John Heydon.

1555, William Watson.

1558, Christopher Nuttell, by Sir Christopher Heydon.

1572, Richard Lawson.

1580, Richard Turnour, by William Heydon, Esq.

1589, James Smith, by Sir William Heydon.

1616, Christopher Baliston, by Sir Christopher Heydon.

Richard Watson, occurs rector, 1636.

1664, Joseph Clark, by Hannah N -------.

1701 Valent. Haywood, by John Lang, Gent.

1744, Zurish. Girdleston, on Heywood's death. Ditto.

In this church were the lights of our Saviour, St. Mary, and of the crucifixion; and the gilds of St. Margaret, Trinity, and of St. John.

The temporalities of Bromholm priory were 6s. 3d.; of Norwich 15s.; and the prior of Castleacre had the homage of John Muriel, by the gift of William de Bodham, who also gave lands to him here.


  • 1. T're Hugon. de Monteforti— In Bodham, ten. Radulfus quam ten. Bundo, lib. ho. T. R. E. ii car. iii p. man. tc. xvii vill. mo. iiii et iiii bor. tc. in d'nio ii car. et p'. et mo. i tc. ho'um ii mo. null. ii ac. pti. sep. i r. et iii an. tc. v por. sep. xvii cap. et ii soc. de xxx ac. tre. sep. d. car. tc. val. xx s. ms. xs. et ht. x qr. in long. et v in et lat. xiid. in gelto.
  • 2. Terre Walt. Giffardi—In Bodenham i car. tre. T. R. E. et p' tinet ad Laringasta. sep. ix bor. et ii ser. et et in d'nio. i car. et hon'm i car. silva ad v por. ii ac. pti. tc. val. x sol. mo xxx sol.
  • 3. He was a judge, founder of Wendling abbey, &c.; see that in Launditch hundred.
  • 4. He was master of the rolls, and archdeacon of Rochester.