THE DOMESDAY SURVEY are mentioned on a manor of Osbern Fitz Richard. ' Francigenas,' who occasionally occur, as at Haselor, are men of French birth, but I claim the ' francones homines,' who had weathered the Conquest at Birdingbury, as English franklins. The actual term ' francolanus ' (franklin) does not, it would seem, occur in Domesday, 1 nor indeed are ' francones homines ' met with elsewhere in the record except in a reference to the * placita franconum hominum' in the adjoining county of Worcestershire (fo. 175) ; but there can be little doubt that the ' franci homines ' of Domesday has the same meaning. Another term employed in the Warwickshire survey is * taini,' applied, as at Pillerton and Lower Eatington, to members of the agricultural community. Knights (milites) are similarly found grouped with the peasant classes in a way that makes their real status very doubtful. The priest again is regularly found (except in the case of some special tenancies which will be dealt with separately) occupying the same position ; but the fact that it is also occupied by men who were clearly above peasants modifies any conclusion that might be drawn from the fact, and leads us to doubt whether the plough-teams assigned to these groups of classes can have been held by them as members of a village community. Some types of these groups will illustrate their mixed character LOWER EATINGTON PILLERTON ASTON CANTLOW 32 villeins 13 villeins 9 Flemings i priest 23 bordars 16 villeins 25 bordars i 'francigena' i priest 1 knight 3 ' taini' i o bordars 2 ' taini ' 61 40 36 COMPTON STRETTON BARFORD 45 villeins 8 villeins 2 knights 1 priest 3 bordars i priest 13 bordars i priest 4 villeins 2 knights i knight 1 1 bordars 61 13 18 We may compare this grouping with the frequent statement in Domesday that a manor had been held by several sokemen, who prove, when details are elsewhere available, to have varied not only in their tenure, but in the extent of their holdings. When we turn to the peasantry proper, we find not only the normal villeins, bordars and serfs, but six of ' the small but interesting class of buri, burs, or colibert? ' (of whom the status is undetermined) at Nuneaton. We have also a ' brruarius ' at Chesterton, and bondwomen (ancilltz) at several places. The bovarius and ancilla are of frequent occurrence in the adjoin- ing county of Worcestershire, and I have shown that the former was the servant who had charge of the oxen in the lord's plough-team, two of them 1 Monastic cartularies show it us in use in the twelfth century. 3 Maitland_'s Domesday Book and Beyond, p. 36. 285
Page:VCH Warwickshire 1.djvu/341
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.