Page:VCH Surrey 1.djvu/339

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THE DOMESDAY SURVEY Guildford he turned west past Compton and Wanborough (15, [9], 15) to Farnham (55, [30], 47)- That the depreciation so strongly marked on certain Surrey manors in the early days of William was due to the march of his host through Surrey cannot well be doubted ; but it is very hazardous to form too definite conclusions. Ownership, as well as geographical position, has to be taken into consideration. Mr. Baring considered that, in Kent, the Archbishop of Canterbury's manors were specially spared ravage ; and, in Surrey, Mr. Maiden holds, Queen Edith's manors were spared, while Oswold, an English thegn, a man with whom we shall meet below, saved his land from ravage by early submission. 1 We stand on surer ground when we pass to a third of the subjects with which the Domesday Survey was avowedly concerned. In addition to assessment and valuation its compilers were also to record the names of those who had held the land at the death of Edward the Confessor, and of those who held it at the time of the Survey ; they were to inform King William of his land, in the words of the native chronicle, ' how it was set and by what men.' At the head of these is always placed, by Domesday Book, the King himself. In Surrey the King appears as the successor of three different persons. He secured, of course, as Edward's heir, the Crown manors of Woking, Stoke, Wallington,' Kingston-on-Thames, Ewell, 8 and Godalming, and to these he added, on the death of Edward's widow Edith (1075), those of Reigate (' Cherchefelle '), Fetcham, Shere and Dorking, which had been held by her. He had also seized, at the out- set, for himself the manors of the fallen Harold. Next to the King's land in the survey was placed that of the religious houses and ecclesiastical dignitaries. The local abbey of Chertsey towered, in the size of its fief, above any other monastery that held lands in the county. Its possessions, of course, were safe from confiscation, and this must have greatly hampered William in rewarding his eager followers. Indeed the entries in the Survey distinctly convey the impression that the abbey's titles were jealously scanned with the object of detecting any cases in which Englishmen had placed themselves and their lands under the protection of the house in order to escape their forfeiture. It will be necessary to return to this subject below. Next in extent to the Chertsey lands were those of the Archbishop of Canterbury, chiefly consisting of the great manors of Croydon and of Mortlake. Farnham, then as now, was held by the bishop of Win- chester, while ' the new minster ' of that same city possessed the manor of Sanderstead, which was rising rapidly in value. The small estates held by the abbeys of Westminster and of Barking complete, with St. Paul's manor of Barnes, the endowments possessed in Surrey by the English religious houses. But Domesday reveals the changes that 1 History of Surrey [1900], pp. 63-64, 70.

  • It is not actually stated in Domesday by whom these manors had been previously held.