Houses of Benedictine monks: The priory of Deeping

Page 129

A History of the County of Lincoln: Volume 2. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1906.

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The priory of Deeping was founded and presented by Baldwin Fitz Gilbert to Thorney Abbey in 1139. (fn. 1) The gift was confirmed by Robert de Chesney, bishop of Lincoln, and by Pope Alexander III. (fn. 2)

Like all small cells of the greater abbeys, this house has very little independent history. The priors were presented by the abbot without reference to the diocesan, and the right of visitation was reserved. Some trouble about the tithes of the two churches of Deeping brought the priory under the notice of the diocesan about 1299. The tithes of the two churches were said to be so confused that it was not possible to collect them without damage or discontent either on the part of the rector or the monks. It was agreed that in future the tithes from St. James's Church should go entirely to the priory, and the tithes of St. Guthlac's to the rector. (fn. 3)

An inquisition taken in 1324 during a vacancy at Thorney found that the priory had no temporalities, and that from the time of King Richard I its issues had not been seized by the escheators during voidance of the parent abbey. (fn. 4)

The cell was dissolved at the final surrender of Thorney Abbey in December, 1539. A pension of £8 was reserved to the last prior of Deeping. (fn. 5)

The endowment of the priory consisted of the two churches of Deeping, St. James and St. Guthlac, with lands in the same vill. (fn. 6) Its temporalities mentioned in the Taxatio of 1291 only amount to £1 15s. 1d. (fn. 7) No valuation is given in the Ministers' Accounts at the dissolution, because the priory had been granted to the Duke of Norfolk. (fn. 8)

Priors of Deeping

Jocelyn, (fn. 9) occurs in the twelfth century

James Nassington, (fn. 10) occurs 1299

Thomas of Gosberkirk, (fn. 11) occurs from 1329 to 1347

John de Charteris, (fn. 12) occurs 1358 and 1365

William Lee, (fn. 13) last prior.


  • 1. Cott. MS. Nero, cvii, fol. 79.
  • 2. Dugdale, Mon. ii, 597.
  • 3. Harl. MS. 3658, fol. 20 (a chartulary of Deeping).
  • 4. Close, 17 Edw. II, m. 23.
  • 5. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xiv (2), 621.
  • 6. Dugdale Mon. ii, 529.
  • 7. Pope Nich. Tax. (Rec. Com.), 53b, 72b.
  • 8. Dugdale, Mon. ii, 597.
  • 9. Harl. MS. 3658, fol. 17 d.
  • 10. Ibid. fol. 20.
  • 11. Ibid. fol. 52d. and Pat. 21 Edw. III, pt. i, m. 20.
  • 12. Harl. MS. 3658, fol. 21 d.
  • 13. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xiv (2), 621.