Page:VCH Warwickshire 1.djvu/326

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A HISTORY OF WARWICKSHIRE t ' Honesberie,' we note in the former with a total assessment, according to Mr. Walker, 1 of 1 50 hides that Eatington (Upper and Lower) was assessed at 20 (17 + i + I + hides, Walton at 15 (5 + 10), Compton Murdak at 10 (7 + 3), Butler's Marston at 10, and Barford, Lighthorne, Chadshunt, Wasperton, and Moreton Morrell at 5 each, thus accounting for more than half the total assessment of the Hundred. In 'Honesberie ' Hundred Dassett was assessed at 25 (15 + 10) hides, Priors Hardwick at 15, Fenny Compton at 10 (4! + 2 + 3?), and Arlescote, Ratley, New- bold Comyn, and Mollington at 5 each, some two-thirds of the Hundred being thus demonstrably assessed on the five-hide system. Where the assessments are fractional and not suggestive of that system, it is probable that groups had been formed, as we know to have been sometimes done, to complete a perfect unit. As examples of the five-hide unit in other parts of the county, one may take Church Lawford, Long Lawford, Bishop's Itchington, Dunchurch, Stretton-on-Dunsmore, Radford Simele, Bourton-upon-Dunsmore, Bubbenhall, and Wappenbury, each of which was assessed at exactly 5 hides. 1 An interesting illustration of the working of this system in practice is found in the charter of Henry I. which reduced the assessment of Alveston in favour of the church of Worcester, from 15 hides to 10, that is to say by one of these five-hide units. 3 The arbitrary nature of such assessment is shown by this example. Before leaving the subject of assessment we may note that ' inland,' which was land free from contributing to the 'geld,' is men- tioned at Offbrd (in Wootton Wawen) and at Lighthorne. The list of holders of lands is headed as always by the king, but the manors in which he had succeeded his predecessor were few. In the south of the county Edward the Confessor had held Bidford, with its water meadows on the Avon, and Kington, 4 with Wellesborne Hastings as its appendage (berewicb), Stanley with Kenilworth in the heart of the county, and Coleshill in its northern portion, complete the list of his possessions. These are distinguished from the rest of those which his successor held at the time of the Survey, namely the forfeited lands of Earl Eadwine, by two peculiarities. In the first place, the number of plough-lands in each manor is omitted ; in the second, its value. We know little of the system on which the returns were made for the king's manors in io86, 5 but in the case before us the omission of values appears to be due to the fact that in the preceding column they are, as one may say, ' lumped in ' with other sources of revenue, all of which were 1 See 'The Hundreds of Warwickshire at the time of the Domesday Survey,' by Benjamin Walker, A.R.I.B.A. (Jnrifxary, xxix. 146-51, 179-84). This valuable paper contains an analysis of each Hundred. 1 The system of the five-hide unit occasionally affords a clue in the work of identification, as will be seen from the notes to Mr. Carter's translation of the text. ' ' H. Rex Angl. comitibus et omnibus baronibus et ministris suis de Warewicasire salutem. Clamo quietas imperpctuum Priori et monachis de Wirecestria v hidas de Alvestun de geldis et murdris et omni- bus regiis exactionibus,' etc. Regiitnm Prieratiu B. M. Wig>rnensis (Camden Soc.) p. 85<. 4 jfXat Kineton. It is noteworthy that in the transcripts of the original returns from the Cambridgeshire Hun- dreds, which are so rich in detail, no information whatever is given on the royal manors, for which it seems to be implied there was a separate return. 270