Stephen (nos. 105–21)
105. Writ of King Stephen, informing the bps., sheriffs, and officers in
whose shires the almoner of Westminster holds lands, or tithes, that he
has quitclaimed the lands and tithes of the abbey from pleas, and certain
other actions and specified financial obligations, in the land of Paddington (Mddx.), Fanton (Essex) and Claygate (Surr.), and whatever the
almoner held TRE in the wood of Ditton (Surr.), namely the third oak
and common pasture, as he held it in the time of King Henry, and as King
Edward's charter testifies, lest the archdeacon, sheriff or other officer
should intrude on the monk-custodian. The grant is made for the souls of
himself, his wife and their children; for the repose and redemption of his
father; for the wellbeing of his mother, and for the soul of his uncle, King
Henry. London [Dec. 1135 × 1137]
WAM XXXIX; WAD, f. 458r–v.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 936; SR, plate VII(a), facsimile.
Cal: SR, no. 531: scribe vii.
Date: The king's mother d. in 1137 (D. C. Douglas, William the
Conqueror (1964), 395).
Note: It is remarkable that an archdeacon should have intruded in the
matters listed here. At this period, the archdeacons of London,
Mddx. and Essex were all members of the entrenched Belmeis
dynasty (Fasti I, 9, 12–13, 15), and perhaps presumed to extend their
own jurisdiction during the crisis in that of the bishopric of London,
1134–41 (ibid., 1–2). For King Edward's grants, see Sawyer, AngloSaxon Charters, nos. 1040, 1043, 1137.
106.* Writ of King Stephen ordering the sheriffs in whose shires the
[minister of the] alms holds lands that the lands of [this minister] in
Paddington (Mddx.), Fanton (Essex) and Claygate (Surr.) are to be quit
of pleas, shire and hundred courts, and specified financial obligations.
The abbey is to have whatever it held in the vill or wood of Ditton (Surr.),
TRE or TRW, as the charters of those kings bear witness, namely the
third oak and acre, and the third of all other things, as King Henry
conceded by charter, lest anyone trespasses on the monk-custodian.
[1135 × 1154]
WAM XXXVII; WAD, f. 458.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 937; SR, plate VII(b), facsimile.
Cal: SR, no. 529.
Note: T. A. M. Bishop allows that this text may represent an instance of
a genuine charter having been written by the beneficiary's scribe, but
suggests that if so, 64 is modelled on it (SR, 8, 8n.). The present writ
supplements 62–3 by stating that these privileges were confirmed in a
charter of W I, as does the spurious 64, but there is no such grant
among his genuine charters, and the writs of H I and Stephen which
mention it are prob. forged.
107. Writ of King Stephen ordering the abbot and convent and their
officers that Gilbert of Hendon is to have his land of Hendon (Mddx.)
which he holds in fee-farm, as peaceably as Abbots Gilbert and Herbert
and the chapter granted it to him by charter. Westminster [post 22 Dec.
1135 × c. 1137]
WAD, f. 124.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 926.
Date: Attested by Robert Fitz Richard, who is said to have d. in 1137
(Geoffrey de Mandeville, 13), and by Hugh Bigod. By 1141 at latest,
he went over to the empress, who recognized him as earl of Norfolk
in that year (Regesta III, nos. 275, 634). Although this text is only a
cartulary copy, it may be significant that the abbot is not named. The
writ was prob. issued soon after the d. of Herbert, 3 Sept.
1136 × 1138 (Heads, 77; cf. Flete, 142), when Gilbert would need to
seek a renewal of his grant in fee.
Note: Cf. Harvey, WA, 352.
108. Writ of King Stephen informing the bp. of London, and the justices,
sheriffs and barons of Mddx. that he has conceded to Richard de Balta
and his heirs the land of the abbot's fee in Hampstead, rendering £2
annually to the abbot and convent, as they granted by charter. Westminster [22 Dec. 1135 × c. 1137]
WAD, f. 120v.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 925.
Date: Attested by R[obert] Fitz Richard, who is said to have d. in 1137
(Geoffrey de Mandeville, 13). The King was first at Westminster 22–26 Dec. 1135 (Regesta III, xxxix). Although this text is only a
cartulary copy, it may be significant that the bp. of London is not
named. Anselm, abbot of Bury, was elected 1136 and enthroned in
1137, but his election was quashed by the pope in 1138 and the see
remained vacant until July 1141 (Fasti I, 1–2). The attestation of the
bp. of Salisbury indicates a date ante June 1139 (Gesta Stephani, 72–8; Historia Novella, 26–8).
Note: Cf. Harvey, WA, 352.
109. Writ of King Stephen, ordering his justice, sheriff, barons and
officers of London that they are to guard and maintain the lands and
tenements of his son, Abbot Gervase, as they would the royal demesne,
and to enable him to have his rents and dues, and especially St Mary
Newchurch, which Gislan gave him, with its appurtenant lands. Westminster [17 Dec. 1138 × 1154]
WAD, f. 57.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 930; Gilbert Crispin, 159.
Date: Prob. issued following the consecration of Gervase by the legate
Alberic, 17 Dec. 1138 (John of Worcester, 53). The omission of the
bp. of London from the addressees suggests that it was issued during
the vacancy in the see, 1138–41 (Fasti I, 1–2).
110.* Confirmation by King Stephen, generally addressed, of the
abbey's lands, liberties and privileges. Westminster, 13 Dec. 1138.
WAM XXXIII; WAD, ff. 55–56v; F, ff. 68r–71v; T, ff. 21v–22 (ending at
regis confirmata sunt); C, ff. 30v–31 (extracts only); BL MS Lansdowne 992, f. 147 (brief note).
Pd: Regesta III, no. 928, 'a forgery'; Flete, 55–6 (extracts only).
Cal: SR, no. 525.
Date: Attestation of Abp. Theobald inconsistent with date given in
charter, since he was elected only on 24 Dec. (Fasti II, 4).
Note: Cf. Chaplais, 'Original Charters', 97.
111.* Confirmation by King Stephen, generally addressed, of the
abbey's lands and customary privileges. [8 Jan. × ante 24 June, 1139]
PRO, E40/15911 (pretended original); WAD, f. 80r-v.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 929, 'spurious'.
Date: Attestations of Roger of Salisbury and his nephews (Gesta
Stephani, 72–8; Historia Novella, 26–7), and of Abp. Theobald (Fasti
Note: The text, clearly indicative of forgery, is almost identical to the
alleged confirmation of H I (57).
112. Writ of King Stephen addressed to Andrew Buccuinte and the
citizens of London, ordering that the men in the soke of St Peter are to be
quit of the Hustings and Folkmoot as fully as their charter attests. If
anyone makes any claim against them, let justice be done. Clare [Dec.
1135 × 1139]
WAD, f. 98v.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 927.
Date: Andrew Buccuinte's term of office as justiciar of London (Regesta
III, no. 927n; Brooke & Keir, 327).
113. Writ of King Stephen, informing the justice, sheriff, barons and
officers of Essex that he quitclaims to the church of St Peter of Westminster and the monks the sheriff's aid called justice-aid, at the rate of 1s.
annually on each hide in Essex. London [late 1138 (x ante May 1152)]
WAD, f. 647.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 931.
Date: Attested by Robert de Vere, whose d. occ. before that of the
queen, May 1152 (Regesta III, xxx; cf. ASC, 202, n. 7). Also
attested by Richard de Lucy, out of England until late 1138 (Regesta
III, no. 931, n.; Orderic VI, 526). Since Gervase is not named, the
writ prob. dates from before his consecration, 17 Dec. 1138 (Heads,
114. Writ of King Stephen informing the bp. of London, and the justice,
sheriff, barons and officers of Essex, that he has granted to the church of
St Peter of Westminster and to the abbot and monks, in perpetual alms,
forty acres of assarts in Kelvedon for the soul of King Henry his uncle,
and for those of himself, his wife Queen Matilda, their son Eustace and
his other children. London [Dec. 1135 (× 1154)]
WAD, f. 269v.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 932.
Date: Since the bp. of London is not named, the writ may date from the
interregnum in the see, 1138–41, or perhaps that during the first
months of the reign (Fasti I, 1–2). The wording implies a date close to
Stephen's coronation, and the abbot's name is not given, suggesting
that the writ was issued in the vacancy between Herbert and Gervase
(cf. Heads, 77).
Note: Cf. Harvey, WA, 342. Eustace was prob. named because he was
the king's heir, but the wording may be designed not only to include
children of the marriage as yet unborn, but specifically to encompass
Stephen's other offspring, notably Gervase, whose subsequent
appointment to Westminster was perhaps already planned.
115. Writ of King Stephen ordering Gerbod de Scalt that the monks are
to be allowed to hold their manor of Doddington (Lincs.) peaceably.
Gerbod must not seize anything, nor exact forfeiture, nor intrude into
any part of it, since he, Stephen, will warrant that manor to no-one but
the church and monks of Westminster. Westminster [Dec. 1135 × 1154
(? Sept. 1136 × 1138)]
WAD, f. 649v.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 933.
Date: Since the abbot is not mentioned, the writ may date from the
vacancy between the death of Herbert and the election of Gervase
(Heads, 77). The only witness, William Martell, attests Stephen's
charters throughout the reign.
Note: Cf. Harvey, WA, 348–9.
116. Writ of King Stephen ordering William Martell to bring justice to
bear, without delay, upon the abbot of Chertsey (Surr.) and other tenants
of the abbot of Westminster who deprived him of his rights, and did not
render from their tenements the Danegeld due to the king. Meanwhile,
the abbot of Westminster is to have respite on the balance due on the
hidage exacted from his land. Martell is to name a day for agreement to be
made between the abbots of Westminster and Chertsey. London [Dec.
1138 × 1143 (or 1149 × 1154)]
WAD, f. 650v.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 934.
Date: Attestation of Henry of Essex without a title. He witnesses from
the early years of the reign, and succeeded Robert de Vere as
constable 1151 × ante May 1152 (Regesta III, xx). The abbot of
Westminster is prob. Gervase, consecrated 17 Dec. 1138 (Heads,
77). The abbot of Chertsey is prob. William of St Helen, appointed
by Stephen but removed by the pope at the instance of Bp. Henry of
Winchester (Chron. Mon. de Abingdon II, 291–2), prob. during his
legateship, 1 March 1139 × 24 Sept. 1143 (Fasti II, 85). William's
successor, Hugh, nephew of King Stephen, succeeded to Chertsey in
1149 (Regesta III, no. 169, dated by Chertsey Abbey Cartularies
(Surrey Record Soc., 1958), II, x); see also Rob. de Torigny, 218–19;
St Benet Holme 1020–1210, ed. J. R. West, Norfolk Record Soc. 3
(1932), II, 194–5.
117. Writ of King Stephen informing his justices, barons, sheriffs and
officers of Sussex and Mddx. that, since Abbot Herbert proved his title to
the land of Parham (Suss.) and Mapelefort (Mddx.) against Herbert Fitz
Herbert, in the presence of King Henry's barons at the Exchequer, by
their verdict, the abbot may hold it in demesne if he wishes, and may do as
he pleases with it. The king orders that the (present) abbot is to hold that
land peaceably as the said abbot proved his title, and as King Henry's
charter bears witness (96). London [post 24 June 1139 × 1154]
Pd: Regesta III, no. 935.
Cal: SR, no. 530: scriptor xx.
Date: The narrowest limits of scriptor xx's chancery career are 1139–Dec. 1141 (SR, facing plate XXI(a) and XXI(b)). Attached to the
charter is a fragment of Stephen's second seal, adopted after 24 June
1139, and used for the rest of the reign (Regesta III, xv, following
Geoffrey de Mandeville, 50–1).
Note: Cf. Harvey, WA, 359–60. The writ was presumably issued for (the
unnamed) Abbot Gervase.
118. Notification by King Stephen, generally addressed, that he has
conceded to the church of St Peter and to the monks there quittance of
geld and customary exactions on six and a half hides in the manor of
Westminster, since his court and palace, and the infirmary of St Giles, are
established there. The grant is made for the souls of his wife Queen
Matilda and himself and his children; and for the souls of King Henry and
his other predecessors as kings of England. St Albans [c. 1150 × ante 3
WAM XXXV, with fragment of Stephen's second seal; WAD, f. 80v;
LN, f. j; CAY, f. j.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 938; Chaplais, 'Original Charters', 109–10; NPS
Facsimiles, plate 20b (plate and transcript).
Cal: SR, no. 527, scriptor xxii; Bentley, 1, no. 2, from CAY.
Date: Issued before the d. of the queen, 3 May 1152. Attested by R.
abbot of St Albans, either Ralph (1146–51) or Robert (1151–66)
(Heads, 67), and by Daniel, abbot of St Benet of Hulme, in office
c. 1141–46 (deposed), and c. 1150–53 (Heads, 68).
Note: It is interesting both that the grant is made for the king's children
(presumably including Gervase and others born out of wedlock),
and also that the king styles his predecessors as kings 'of England'
(see also 119–20), rather than kings 'of the English'.
119.* Notification by King Stephen, generally addressed, that he has
quitclaimed gelds, Danegelds, and specified financial exactions and other
obligations on six and a half hides in the manor of Westminster, since the
royal court and palace, and also the infirmary of St Giles, are established
there, for the souls of himself, Queen Matilda and his children, and the
souls of King Henry and his other predecessors as kings of England, with
an anathema on transgressors. St Albans [early 1150 × ante 3 May 1152]
WAM XXXIV, with fragment of second seal; WAD, ff. 80v–81; LN, f. j.
verso; CAY, f. j recto-verso.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 939; Chaplais 'Original Charters', 109–10 (both
texts presented to indicate extent of borrowing from 118; Formulare,
no. D; Monasticon I, 308, no. LIII.
Cal: SR, no. 526; Bentley, 1, no. 3, from CAY.
Date: Intended as for 118.
Note: A forgery based on 118, and virtually contemporary (Chaplais,
'Original Charters', 97). Scribe discussed by Bishop & Chaplais,
xxii; Chaplais, 'Original Charters', 97n.3. In comparison with 118,
Abp. Theobald is now styled 'primate and legate', but neither this,
nor the additional attestations of Robert de Chesney, bp. of Lincoln,
Richard de Lucy and Osbert Martell has any conclusive effect on the
120.* Notification by King Stephen, generally addressed, that he has
conceded to the abbey and convent for their manor of Battersea (Surr.)
quittance of gelds, Danegelds and certain other exactions on twenty-eight
hides; with quittance of geld on forty-four hides which were formerly
required to contribute, for the souls of himself, his wife Queen Matilda
and his (sic) children, and for those of his uncle King Henry and his other
predecessors as king of England, with an anathema on transgressors. St
Albans [early 1150 × ante 3 May 1152]
WAM XXXVI, with a seal resembling Stephen's second seal; WAD,
Pd: Regesta III, no. 940, with italics indicating derivations from 119.
Cal: SR, no. 528.
Date: Intended as for 118.
Note: Scribe not identified (SR) and the handwriting prob. 13C
(Chaplais, cited Regesta III, no. 528n.).
121.* Notification of King Stephen, generally addressed, concerning his
grant to the church of St Peter of Westminster and the monks of
exemptions for their manor of Battersea (Surr.) as applicable to twentyeight hides; his quittance of geld on forty-four hides there (all as in 120),
and on six and a half hides in the manor of Westminster (as in 119), and
quittance of all secular service on a virgate in Hanwell (Mddx.). St Albans
[early 1150 × ante 3 May 1152]
WAD, f. 56v; PRO Pat. Roll 3 Ric. II, pt. i, m. 7; Pat. Roll 1 Ed. IV,
m. 21; Confirmation Roll 2 Hen. VII, pt. 2, no. 12; Conf. Roll 2
Hen. VIII, pt. 6, no. 1.
Pd: Regesta III, no. 941, with distinctive typefaces to indicate derivations
from 119 and 120; Cal. Pat. R. 1461–7 (Ed. IV's confirmation of
Ric. II's confirmation).
Cal: Cal. Pat. R. 1377–81, 407.
Date: Intended as for 118. Derivations from 120 suggest the composition