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Diana E. Greenway

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'Precentors', Fasti Ecclesiae Anglicanae 1066-1300: volume 4: Salisbury (1991), pp. 12-16. URL: Date accessed: 18 April 2014. Add to my bookshelf


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Church of Westbury (Wilts., royal manor 1086, DB I 65a) conf. by Henry I to cath. 1107 x 35 (RSO I 201, cal. Regesta II no. 1972) and to bp. Roger 1107 x 22, ? 1121 (RSO I 208, cal. Regesta II no. 1291). Prob. assigned to precentor by bp. Roger shortly before Dec. 1139 (Regesta III no. 787, and see above, p. xxv and n.). Conf. to cath. by pope 26 Nov. 1146 (PUE II no. 53 p. 210). Released to precentor after dispossession, by Matthew, chanc. of queen Eleanor, 1155 x 65 (Sar. Chs. pp. 17-18), (fn. 1) prob. 1157, when restored by Henry II (ibid. p. 29). Conf. to cath. by Henry II 1158 (RSO I 204).

Deeds relating to church of Westbury and its tithes, Sar. Chs. pp. 114, 183- 4; IV/E.4/Westbury/1, 3, 7, 10, 13. See also VCH Wilts. VIII 153, 176.


1226 precentory 30m.; 1291 church of Westbury £33 6s. 8d.


Godwin preb. unident., list 65

Occ. once only, 1122 or a little earlier, together with dean Serlo (Kealey p. 238). Buried at Old Sarum (monumental inscription, which states that he was ord. pr. by abp. Anselm (so before 1109), see Proc. Soc. Antiquaries of London 2nd ser. xxvi (1913-14) p. 113). Author of 'Meditaciones Godwini' (Bodl., MS Digby 96, cf. above, p. xxiv and M. T. J. Webber's thesis, cited above p. xxiv n. 6). (fn. 2)

Hubert preb. unident., list 65

Occ. once only, prob. 1122 x Dec. 1139, together with dean Roger (RSO I 215).

Henry preb. unident., list 65

Occ. twice only: 1142 x 53 [prob. 1148] at Reims (Cart. Baioc. I no. 61, cal. Cal. Docs. France no. 1438), and 1151 x c. 1164 (RSO I 245, also in cart. Bath: BL, Egerton MS 3316 fo. 70r). (fn. 3)

M. Walter (fn. 4) preb. unident., list 65

Perhaps can., c. 1155 (list 65). First occ. as precentor ? late 1165 (Bec Docs. pp. 3-4, cf. Eyton, Itin. Hen. II pp. 87-8), and mid to late 1167 (JS Epp. II 442; Materials for Becket VI 277, cf. ibid. p. 273). Occ. frequently. Last occ. at el. of bp. Herbert Poore, c. Apr. 1194 (Diceto II 116).

Robert preb. unident., list 65

Occ. four times only: as Robert precentor 7 Jan. 1213/14 (Nova Const.); as R. precentor, before Jan. 1215 (RSO I 252); as Robert precentor, 1213 x Jan. 1215 (Cart. Loders no. 30, also pd. from a text lacking witnesses, RSO I 225-6); and last, as R. precentor, 14 Nov. 1215 (C. 479, witnesses omitted in Sar. Chs. p. 79).

M. Thomas de Disci preb. [Heytesbury], list 35

Can. (list 35). Occ. as Master T. precentor 6 Feb. 1217 (Rot. Litt. Claus. I 297a; cf. Pat. R. 1216-25 p. 63, where he occ. as official, not called precentor, 9 May 1217). Only other occ. as precentor is notice of his d., with full name, before 2 Dec. 1218 (RSO II 9).

William de Waude preb. Heytesbury, list 35

Coll. 2 Dec. 1218, instal. 16 Dec. in succession to Thomas de Disci (RSO II 9). Sent to dioc. of London to collect alms for new cath., Dec. 1219 (ibid. p. 12). Compiler of RSO account of events in cath. chapter 1217-29 (list 2), and present at translation of Thomas Becket at Canterbury 7 July 1220 (RSO II 14). Occ. frequently. Dean, el. and instal. 20 Sept. 1220 (list 2).

M. William de Badeston preb. unident., list 65

Can. (list 65). Occ. as precentor twice only: (fn. 1) as Master William precentor 7 Oct. 1221 (Sar. Chs. p. 114) and with full name and title 17 Jan. 1222 (IV/C.4/29, pd. from other texts in Sar. Chs. p. 121 and Reg. Malmes. I 401). Presum. not to be identified with M. William de Badeston who occ. as official of bp. of Bath and Wells 1244, and as chanc. of Wells 1245 and 1249, who d. before 11 March 1251 (HMC Wells I 476, 470, 308, 89).

Richard preb. unident., list 65

Occ. twice only: 15 and 18 Aug. 1222 (Sar. Stats. p. 70, also pd. RSO II 18; RSO I 339).

Geoffrey preb. Highworth, list 36

First occ., as G. precentor, 15 Apr. 1224 (Sar. Chs. pp. 164, 165), and as Geoffrey precentor 11 July 1224 (RSO II 22). Occ. several times. Last occ. after 15 Aug. 1226 (ibid. p. 60) and Oct. 1226 x Feb. 1227 (app. 1).

M. Roger of Salisbury (Theologus) (fn. 2) preb. Teinton, list 57

Can. (preb. Netheravon, list 43). First occ. as M. Roger precentor [March x July] 1227 and 5 July 1227 (Sar. Chs. pp. 183-4). (fn. 3) Occ. frequently. Bp. of Bath and Wells, el. before 3 Feb. 1244, temps. 10 May, cons. 11 Sept. (cf. Chron. Maj. IV 287).

Andrew of Lavagna (fn. 1) preb. Teinton, list 57

Nephew of pope Innocent IV, and so a member of Fieschi family; succeeded to preb. Teinton on conf. of Roger of Salisbury as bp. of Bath, 1244 (Chron. Maj. IV 287), and presum. also to precentorship. No precentor occ. in chapter lists of 31 May 1244 (Sar. Stats. p. 84, also pd. Cart. St Nich. p. 22) and 14 Oct. 1245 (Sar. Stats. pp. 298-9, also pd. Cart. St Nich. pp. 28- 9). First certain occ. as precentor 13 March 1252 (Reg. Innoc. IV no. 6252, not in CPL; cf. Reg. Innoc. IV no. 6726, cal. CPL I 288, and Reg. Innoc. IV nos. 7948, 8278, not in CPL). Occ. with full name and title 13 Apr. 1255 (Reg. Alex. IV no. 399, not in CPL). Prob. absentee. (fn. 2) D. Feb. 1270 (IV/E.3/Kenton/7; IV/E.3/Devon/3). Can. of Chartres, provost of estates in Normandy, commem. at Chartres 4 March (Cartulaire de Notre-Dame de Chartres, ed. E. de Lépinois and L. Merlet (3 vols., Chartres, 1862-5), III 56).

M. Stephen de Gurunvile or Goronvile (fn. 3)

prebs. Teinton, Grantham Borealis, lists 57, 33

Can. of Hereford. Instal. in succession to Andrew of Lavagna 18 Apr. 1270 (IV/E.5/Prebend of Teynton/8). Occ. 23 Feb. 1270/1 (Sar. Chs. p. 351) and 21 Dec. 1271 (Rot. Gravesend p. 50). Last occ., royal envoy in Paris, 28 Jan. 1272 (Diplom. Docs. I no. 433 p. 304). D. by 30 Aug. 1272 (Rot. Gravesend p. 52).

M. John de Burton (fn. 4) preb. Grantham Borealis, list 33

Subdean and preb. unident. (lists 11, 65). First occ. as precentor, adm. to preb. 30 Aug. 1272, in succession to Stephen de Gurunvile, (Rot. Gravesend p. 52). Also warden of De Vaux college from Sept. 1269 to d. (cart. De Vaux fo. 134v, and see VCH Wilts. III 384). Occ. as precentor several times. Last occ. May-June 1284 (app. 2). D. by 16 Nov. 1287 (Reg. Sutton I 103-4).

M. Ralph le Waleys (fn. 5) of Brightwell preb. Fordington, list 31

Occ. as M. Ralph le Waleys precentor once only, 4 Apr. 1288 (CCR 1279-88 p. 533). Rector of Brightwell Baldwin (Oxon), from 1265 (Rot. Gravesend p. 218), papal disp. to be promoted to archdcnry. of Wilts. notwithstanding defect of birth, 13 Feb. 1283 (Les Registres de Martin IV, ed. F. Olivier-Martin (Bibliothèque des Ecoles Françaises d' Athènes et de Rome, 2nd ser. xvi, 1901-35) no. 181, cal. CPL I 466). Therefore to be identified with M. Ralph of Brightwell, archdcn. of Wilts. (last occ. 11 July 1287, list 10), who occ. as precentor 14 Sept. 1288 (C. 516), Aug. 1289 (Records of Wardrobe and Household 1286-89, ed. B. F. Byerly and C. R. Byerly (1986), no. 1971) 1288 x 91 (I/11/Sarum 2/2; III/Sub-chanter) and 8 July 1294 (CPR 1292-1301 p. 79). Occ. several times as M. Ralph precentor and as Ralph precentor (cf. app. 3). Last occ., R. precentor, 26 Jan. 1294/5 (IV/M/theta 5).

M. William of Abingdon (fn. 1) prebs. unident., Horton, lists 65, 37

Archdcn. of Wilts. (list 10). First occ. as precentor 17 Dec. 1296 (III/Archdeacons). As precentor coll. to preb. Horton 20 Jan. 1298, inst. 24 Jan., notwithstanding papal prov. of preb. to George of Saluzzo (Reg. Gandavo II 565-7). Also occ. some time before 1 Apr. 1298 (I/13-15/Sarum 3/6). Last occ. 16 Feb. (Reg. Gandavo II 566-7). D. by 5 May 1298 (ibid. p. 574).

George of Saluzzo (fn. 2) preb. Charminster, list 26

Papal prov. of a preb. in expectation 28 Jan. 1297 (Reg. Bon. VIII no. 1658, cal. CPL I 568); disputed preb. Horton with M. William of Abingdon (above and list 37). First occ. as precentor 22 March 1299 (Reg. Sutton VIII 221). Also occ. 1 Apr. 1300 (CPR 1292-1301 p. 502). Claimed deanery of York 1312 (Reg. William Greenfield, ed. W. Brown and A. H. Thompson (Surtees Soc. cxlv, cxlix, cli-cliii, 1931-40) I 78-81, 90-1). Excomm. by abp. of York 1312 (see ibid. II pp. xxvii-xxx, and cf. Reg. Gandavo I 447-51). Exch. precentorship with Boniface of Saluzzo, his brother, for archdcnry. of Buckingham 28 Apr. 1319 (Reg. Martival I 133-5; 1 Fasti III 41).


1 Temp. Henry de Beaumont, dean, list 2.
2 Prob. not to be identified with Godwin, hermit of Kilburn, a possible author of the Ancren Riwle, cf. H. E. Allen, Proc. Modern Language Assoc. xliv (1929) 635-80, esp. p. 640 and n.
3 Temp. Ivo, dean of Wells, see Inst. p. 88 n. 48.
4 Does not occ. as Master until after 1190, RSO I 358 (after the marriage of Eustace de Balliol to Petronilla, PR 2 Ric. I (PRS n.s. i, 1925) p. 121), but evidently a canonist, occ. at Oxford 1177 x 80, Hist. Univ. Ox. I 16 and references cited ibid. n. 2.
1 The apparent occ. in Sar. Chs. p. 101 may be discounted: the MSS give no names for either dean or precentor.
2 Oxford, and possibly Paris, Master; for his name and career, see Biog. Ox. III 1632, and for his reputed writings, see Russell, Dict. p. 146.
3 Roger apparently occ. as precentor 25 March 1225, as witness to a ch. of bp. Richard Poore in favour of citizens of his new city of Salisbury, Niger fo. 122v (pd. Hoare's History of Modern Wilts. IV, ed. R. Benson and H. Hatcher (1843) p. 728, and from another source, without witnesses, The Tropenell Cart., ed. J. Silvester Davies I (1908) pp. 187-8). The text of this ch. may well be genuine, even though it is not mentioned in Henry III's conf. of the removal of the cath. and the foundation of the new city, which is dated 30 Jan. 1227, Sar. Chs. pp. 175-8 (cal. Cal. Charter Rolls 1226-57 p. 1). But Roger's appearance as precentor suggests some corruption in the dating clause of Poore's ch.: all the witnesses would fit a date two years later, 25 March 1227, i.e. Poore's tenth rather than his eighth year (reading 'decimo' for 'octavo').
1 Near Genoa, Italy.
2 His proctor, M. Walter de Sine Muro, was a can. of Beaune, IV/E.5/Teynton/7; cf. Reg. Alex. IV no. 1445, cal. CPL I 333.
3 Oxford Master; for his career, cf. Biog. Ox. II 838, sub Gurnville.
4 Possibly Oxford Master; see note in Biog. Ox. I 318-19.
5 alias Aunfrey, son of a subdcn., possibly Oxford Master; for his career, see Biog. Ox. I 77.
1 'Abendon"; presum. Abingdon, Berks.
2 Son of Thomas, marquis of Saluzzo, Reg. Bon. VIII no. 1658, cal. CPL I 568; nephew of Alice, countess of Lincoln, sister of Thomas, cf. Comp. Peer. VII 681.