Page:VCH Warwickshire 1.djvu/330

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A HISTORY OF WARWICKSHIRE five Warwickshire estates but failed to establish, as against Worcester, an old claim to Stratford-on-Avon.* This and other disputes in which the monks of Worcester were involved help at times to illustrate the entries in the Domesday Survey. In Warwickshire, they complained, they had lost in the days of Cnut by forfeiture for delay, real or alleged, in the payment of the ' geld ' estates at Luddington, Drayton and Lapworth, three hides at Loxley and a moiety of Milcote. 8 They had also been deprived of Bickmarsh by Eadwine, a brother of Earl Leofric, 8 while Abbot ./Ethelwig of Eves- ham had stripped them of the other moiety of Milcote. 4 It is only in the case of Milcote that we can test their statements by Domesday. The whole of it was held at the time of the Survey by Stephen the steersman, 6 and Domesday asserts that its former holders were Bishop Wulfstan and an ./Elfstan. The story of the monks of Worcester is that Abbot ^Ethel- wig, having obtained ^Ifstan's moiety of Milcote, 8 set himself to ac- quire from Bishop Wulfstan the other moiety. 7 Succeeding in this by guile, he obtained the whole, but Bishop Odo of Bayeux, they added, seized on his lands at his death. Domesday, however, shows Milcote held, as I have said, by Stephen and unconnected with Odo. The ex- planation is, I believe, that Stephen who held in capite Little Dorsington and Milcote 8 was identical with the Stephen who held as a tenant of the Bishop of Bayeux at Brome (in Bidford) and at Arrow in the same neighbourhood. 9 He may thus have acquired Milcote by gift of the bishop. The Evesham monks classed Brome (now Broom) and Arrow with Dorsington and the Milcotes as manors which Abbot ^Ethelwig had acquired for his abbey, but which Bishop Odo had afterwards seized. 10 On comparing Domesday with the Evesham chronicle and the MS. records of that abbey it is not clear how matters stood as between the monks and Bishop Odo, but on one point the concordance is perfect ; the only manor in the Survey to which a previous owner is assigned is Wixford, and this is also the only one for which the chronicle give us the details of ./Ethelwig's action. We read in the latter that it five hides had been given to Evesham, about a century before Domesday by Ufa, sheriff of Warwickshire, but that his son had been rashly allowed to retain it for his life, with the result that it was not secured till^Ethel- 1 There is no allusion in the Warwickshire survey to his recent contest with the bishop, but the monk Heming, in his cartulary, gives us the Worcester version, while that of Evesham is preserved in the abbey's chronicle. At one stage of the controversy there was a ' plea,' described in Heming's cartulary (ed. Hearne, p. 82), at which two barons of this county, Osbern Fitz Richard and Turchil ' de Warewicscyre ' were present to depose to the state of things before the Conquest. Heming's cartulary (ed. Hearne), p. 278. Ibid. Ibid. pp. 272, 279. Compare p. 280 below. ' Cum dimidiam partem, qua; ante a monasterio ablata fuerat, ipsius ville, quae Mylekota dicitur, ab ipso, qui earn possederat, suis ingeniis, ut solebat, adquisisset.' > These moieties are now known as Upper and Nether Milcote ; in the thirteenth century they were known as Milcote-on-Avon and Milcote-on-Stour (Calendar of Charter Rolls, i. 284, 292). They are both on the Gloucestershire border and indeed in Gloucestershire parishes. This suggestion is confirmed by the fact that Brome, at least, descended with Milcote and Dor- sington for some time after Domesday. 10 Cbronicm dt Evesham, pp. 95, 97. 274