Redbourn Rental c. 1333

The tenants of Redbourn manor in Hertfordshire (which includes my ancestors) were subjected to a rental in around 1333, recounted in the Acts of the Abbot of St Albans. In the early 1330s, the Abbey appears to have carried out surveys of all its manors to ensure that it was receiving the correct (and presumably maximum) amount of tax from each. Some extents and rentals from St Albans manors from this period still survive (e.g. Codicote 1331) but the concern was that the Abbey was in effect increasing its demands on the manors by stealth.

The tenants of Redbourn objected claiming that rights given to them before the Norman conquest forbade them being taxed at will by the Abbot of St Albans. However the Abbot dismissed their complaint and sent his servants to receive the tax. The tenants revolted and one of them, Adam de ROTHERFIELD, struck the Abbot’s representatives. As a result, the Abbot excommunicated Adam and, with the threat of eternal damnation, forced the tenants of Redbourn to acquiesce. A summary list of those paying the rent was recorded on the Gesta Abbatum and is reproduced here. I suspect that this is a shorter version of a full rental document that was held in the manor and referred to in future years.

The list includes John FINCH for Clerk’s Land and Alice Finch. It is interesting to note that John is one of the richest tenants in the manor. Some of the names used to refer to lands correspond to later manorial documents and can be traced back to this time. Hence Clerk’s Land (‘terra clerici’) and Herons (‘terra Heroun’) are places named in documents hundreds of years later. At this period of time, people were often known by the place that they lived. Hence there is Adam de Besteney, who presumably lived at Besteney End, the family ‘Atte Dean’ presumably lived at Dean End and ‘John atte Chirche’ is possibly the parish priest or someone who farmed land immediately around the parish church of St Mary itself. ‘William By North’ may have lived at Norrington End Farm, which in documents from the 17th Century is referred to as ‘Northington End’ and may have simply been known as ‘by the North End’ at the time of this survey.

Rental of Redbourn Manor circa 1333

De Adam de Besteneydimidiam marcam
De Johanne Maynolf, filio et hærede Ricardi Maynolfdimidiam marcam
De Johanne Botylerxii. d.
De terra Willelmi Pursleyexl. d.
De Adam de Lynkethornexl. d.
De Johanne Beaufuizdimidiam marcam
De terra Gerhamv. s.
De Johanne Fynch, pro terra Clericidimidiam marcam
De Christiana Felicexii. d.
De Johanne Maynolf, pro terra de Becheworthedimidiam marcam
Omnes isti tenent dimidiam virgatam
De Nicolao Hogxl. d.
De Johanne Wytlokii. s. vi. d.
De Ricardo Feliceii. s. xviii. d.
De Roberto Atte Feldexii. d.
De Waltero Curteysii. s.
De Domino W. Bracer, pro terra Couperii. s.
De Johanne Campexl. d.
De Alicia Fynchxii. d.
De Roberto Bytewodeii. s.
De Willelmo Bekkexii. d.
De Adam Rotherfeldii. s.
De Johanne Rotherfeldxl. d.
De Alicia Rotherfeld, relicta J. Aleynxii. d.
De Johanne Atte Chirchexii. d.
De Emma Atte Grenevi. d.
De Simone ‘Maheu, pro terra Bondexl. d.
De Johanne Pecok, pro terra Besteneyxii. d.
De Cristina Jacob, pro terra Atte Pondexviii. d.
De Cristina Jacob, pro Fulleneslondxii. d.
De Symone Quyk, pro terra Renexviii. d.
De Johanne Maynolf, pro terra Clayxii. d.
De Willelmo Atte Pondexii. d.
De Willelmo Aleynxii. d.
De Adam Broteytexii. d.
De Thoma Atte Hachexii. d.
De terra Lynleyexii. d.
De Johanne Atte Denexii. d.
De Willelmo Atte Deneii. s.
De tenemento Johannis Herewardxl. d.
De Ricardo Atte Downeii. s. vi. d.
De Willelmo Bi Southeii. s. xviii. d.
De Stephano Wardexii. d.
De Johanne Beaufiz, pro terra Atte Deneii. s.
Omnes isti tenent ferlingatam terræ
De Johanne Atte Chirchexii. d.
De Johanne Atte Feldexii. d.
De Ricardo de Nortone, pro terra Carteriivi. d.
De Johanne Viryngvi. d.
De Thoma le Wrothe, nihil, condonatur, quia pauper 
De Rogero Cristemassexii. d.
De Ricardo Foulerexii. d.
De Adam Herewardxii. d.
De Thoma Adamxii. d.
De Johanne Palmerexii. D
De Ysabella Atte Hullexii. d.
De Johanna Atte Hulle, nihil, condonatur, quia pauper. 
Omnes isti tenent dimidium ferthingland
De Willelmo Bi Northevi. d.
De Petro Knyght, pro terra Over Reexii. d.
De Johanne Sampson, pro terra Herounxii. d.
De Roberto David, nihil, condonatur, quia pauper 
De Johanne Wardevi. d.
De Johanne Atte Chirche, pro uno sotlandvi. d.
De Willelmo Atte Bekkevi. d.
De Thoma Adamvi. d.
De Johanne Bithewodevi. d.
De Emma Atte Grene, pro uno sotlondvi. d.
Omnes isti tenent, unum sotlond

Summa cxviii. s. x. d.

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