The north aisle appears to have been the family vault of the
late possessors of Thoby Priory, and against its walls are the following
memorials on marble slabs:-
1. In the vault beneath
are deposited the remains of Mary, relict of Henry Blencowe, Esqr., and sole heiress
of Alexander Prescott, Esq of Thoby Priory, who died October the 20th, 1770, aged
54. Also, the remains of Mary, only
daughter of the above Henry and Mary Blencowe, who died March
the 14th, 1822, aged 72.
2. Near this place lieth the body of Henry
Blencowe, Esqr., Councellor at Law. He was descended from Sir Henry Blencowe,
of Blencowe, in the county of Cumberland, Knt., and married Mary, the only
surviving daughter and heiress of Alexander Prescott, of Thoby Priory, Esq., bv
whom he left two children, viz., Henry and Mary. His afflicted widdow, in
memory of his many excellent virtues as a husband, and a parent, and a friend,
caus’d this monument to be erected. He died the 29 of April, 1765, in the 54th
year of his age.
this place are deposited the remains of John Prescott, of Thoby, Esqr., who
departed this life 19th of May, 1750, aged 39 years.
Faith, Hope, and Charity, his constant
Did all his actions guide to noble ends;
These virtues he from heaven drew down here,
And they well pleased at length have rais’d him there
4. Near this place are deposited the remains
of Henrv Prescott Blencowe, Esqr., late of Thoby Priory in this parish, who
died the 9th day of February, 1787, in the 35th year of his age, leaving hiss
widow, Mrs. Elizabeth Blencowe, and four children, viz., Henry Prescott,
Elizabeth, John Prescott, and Margarett.
On a floor-stone in the
chancel is also an inscription to a member of the Prescott family.
5. Alexander Prescott, Esqr.,
eldest son and heir of Alexander Prescott, of Thoby, Esqre., died the
18th of October, 1731, aged 22. He was of Emanuel College, Cambridge, and of the Temple, student; a person of an
accomplished and sweet temper, and whose virtues and innocent life is an example
On a monument consigned to neglect, and
thrown into a corner of’ the belfry, is this inscription:-
6. Reader, this table represents ye pious state
Of one whose soul to heaven was truly consecrate.
from the turmoiles of this world confined
By a distemper too
Just to all men, to God devout,
Patient beyond or wrongs or gout:
a life in contemplation pass’d
Was brought to that celestiall blisse at
Which he by faith so firmly did possesse
Vision alone could make him to enjoy it
The disconsolate widdow of Edmond Pert,
Gent., has erected this monument, sacred to the her deceased husband, buried
near this place.
Layde heere aloone all dedde in tooeme John
Peers of Arnollde Hall,
the daye of dooeme till Christe hym up shall call,
Whose tyme nowe paste on earth well spente hath gotten him good name
His honest lyfh and govermente deserved well the same
God grawnte that his good dealyne may to us example be
Of Mowntneysinge that rightelie saye an honest man was he.
above in old English characters, is on a plain floor-stone in the chancel.
Against the south wall of the aisle is
8. Sacred to the memory of Mrs.
Sarah Bowskill, wife of the Revd W. W. Bowskill, vicar of this parish, who died
May 7th, 1810, aged 64. Also, of William Westfield Bowskil, son of the
above died April 27th, 1808, aged 28; and also of Miss Mary
Whitewood, only laughter of Captain Saml Whitewood, and Sarah his wife, (late
Mrs. Bowskil,) who died December 28th, 1828, aged 52.
The following are benefactions to this parish:-
“1. Endimion Canning, Esqr., late
of’ this parish, by will, May 24, 1681, bequeathed to the churchwardens and
overseers and principal inhabitants of this parish and his successors, in
trust, a field for the use of the poor of this parish forever, by the name of
Ryer’s Field, now let for £23 per annum, Sept. 4, 1807.
2. A donation of Mrs. Amy
English, the only daughter and heiress of Richard Bayley, Esqre., deceased,
bearing date the 5th day of October, 1787, in pursuance of his charitable intentions
of the said Richard Bayley, expressed and declared in his lifetime to the said
Amy English, his daughter, upon trust, of a farm and lands in Mountnessing,
called Pinchions, containing 13 ac.: 0 : 39; and a messuage and lands also in
Mountnessing, parcel of a farm called Sawbriglets and Shimmius, containing 4
ac. : 2 : 17, at the yearly rent of £30, to apply the yearly rents and profits
thereof for the teaching and instructing as many poor children belonging to or
residing said parish of Mountnessing, in reading and in the principles of the
Christian religion, and such of them as should be girls in sewing and knitting;
and for providing such children with other necessaries.”
The seal of this abbey is attached to a deed dated the 11th
of Edward II., now in the Augmentation Office, and the legend may be read thus:
SIGILLVM : SANCTI : LEONARDI : DE : TOBI.
As Thoby was valued at only
£75 6s. 10½d. per annum, it became one of those establishments “devoured (as
Fuller quaintly observes) without producing a sacrilegious surfeit” by Cardinal
Wolsey, to whose use it was surrendered in 1525. That ecclesiastic’s disgrace,
however, brought it, with the rest of his prodigious wealth, into his master’s
hands, who, on the general dissolution of religious houses, which soon after
followed, granted it in 1530 to Sir Richard Page, Knt., and the reversion in
1539 to William Berners, Esq., and Dorothy his wife. It has lately been possessed
by the family of Prescott, and passed, a few years since, by
a female heir in marriage to that of Blencowe, who are its present possessors.
From an examination of the subjoined
documents, it will appear that the Priory Thoby held, in addition to the advowson
and great tithes of the entire parish of Mountnessing, about four hundred and
ninety-seven acres of land, and rather more than thirty-seven acres of copyhold
held of the manor of Thoby, and as it seems under arbitrary fines.
It is perhaps impossible to ascertain, at the precise moment, the value
of the tithes and copyholds; but as the whole property was only fixed at £75
6s. 10½d. per annum, we may, I think, infer that the land was let or valued at
not more than two shillings per acre, taking wood-land, meadow and arable, all
round, which would have produced about £50 per annum of rent. The copyholds and
the great tithes of the entire parish must surely have amounted to the
remaining £25 6s. 10½d. – a very striking but correct proof of the difference
in the value of landed property between he early parts of the sixteenth and the
nineteenth centuries. This difference will appear yet more surprising when I
observe, that the lands of Thoby, like those of all monastic houses, were the
richest in the neighbourhood; and that the monks were the best farmers of their
day, I have demonstrated in a preceding volume.
Inter Recorda in Thesaurario
Curiae Receptae Saccarij adservata, (viz.) in Libro vocat. “Extents of
Monastries,” continetur ut sequitur:-
THE MANOR OF THOBY WITH THE
CUSTUMES BELONGYNG TO THE SAME.
First, the Manor their
haith a Court Baron to be holden de trib; septimanis in tres, if the Lord will.
Item, to the same Manor belong as well freholders & Copieholders as
tenants at will, or for tme of yere.
Item, every of the foresaide
Tenants shall sue to the Court, upon the peyn of amciament.
Item, every Copieholder shall fyne for his Lord at every deth or alienacon
as the Lord and he can agree.
Item, neither Copieholder, Tenant at will,
or for terme of yeir, shall make no waist upon peyn of fforfeyture of their
Item, every tenant shall pay his rent at II
tymes in the yere, that is to say, at Eister and Michelmas.
to the same Manor belongeth & apperteyneth thadvowson or pronage of the
Churche of Engemountney, wherof the Colledge ben psoñs in psonys, & a Vicar
there sufficieritlie indued.
THE DEMAYNES OF THE MANOR
Thoby. - Ffurst, the place, the Churche and
Churche yarde, the Orcharde, Gardeyn, Yarde and utter houses, with the pondes Iyinge
betweene Postonfelde ande Barnefelde onne the West parte, and two crofts lyinge
next the place, with pondes therein ande Longeponde on the Est parte and butteythe
uppon Hoggeyn grove, and a wey ledinge to the place towarde the South ande uppon
postonfelde foresayde towarde the north, & conteyneth … x acr. i roade.
- Item, a grove called Hogingrove, lyinge betweene the Orcharde of Thobye ande
a grove called ffregrove onne the north parte, ande a felde called Wellefelde
onne the South parte, and butteyh uppon a waye ledinge to the place onne the
West parte and Brykkylfelde towarde the east, and conteyneth … xvij ac. dim.
Item, a felde called Mellesfelde, lyinge betwene a Lane leding to the
place of Thoby onne the South parte, and landes called Cokks onne the north,
and butteith uppon the Kings hie waye ledinge from iii Chelmes forde to London towarde
the East, ande Hogingrove towarde the West, and conteyneth … lxvi ac. di.
Item. A nother felde called the twentye acres, Iyinge betwene Pourys
& the lands of Maister Avluff toward the East; ande a felde called Wellesfelde
on the west, ande butteyth uppon Kyrkylfelde towarde the north, ande the lands
of - Bawdewyn towarde the Southe, ande conteyneth … xxviij ac. di. i roade.
Medowe. – Item,. a Medowe called Cokks medowe, lyinge betwene Mellefelde
on the West parte. and longekokks on the Est parte. and butteyth uppon
Mellefelde towarde the North and the Kyngs hye waye towarde the South, &
conteyneth … xii ac. di.
Item, a Felde callede Bryklfelde, lyinge
betwene Hogingrove onn the North ande a felde called twenty Acres on the
Southe, butting upon the too Hoppytts towarde the Est, ande the Lane ledinge
from Hogingrove to the Hoppetts foresayde towarde the West, and conteyneth … iiij
ac. i ro. di.
Item, too littell Hoppetts, soo calleyde,
lyinge together betweene fregrove and Brykylfelde onne the West parte, and a
pece of land belonging to Lennards & pours onne the Est parte, and butteyth
uppon panmede towarde the North, ande the felde called twentye acres toward the
South, ande conteyneth … ij ae. di. diro.
Woodde Land. - Item, a Groove called ffregrove,
lyinge betwene the onn Hoppett ande panmede onne the Est parte, a felde called - , with two poundes therin next the place
ande Postonfelde onne the West, and butteyth uppon Hogingrove and a Lane
ledinge to the Hoppetts onne the South, ande Rayshotte ande Postonfelde towarde
the North, and conteyneth … xliii acres.
Item, a felde callede —,
lyinge betwene Fregrove onne the Est parte ande the Orcharde theare onne the
West parte, and butteyth uppon a grove called Hogingrove towarde the Southe
ande uppon Postonfelde towarde the north, ande conteyneth … iiij ac. di. xvi perches.
Item, A nother felde called Postonfelde, lyinge betwene Raysholte and
fregrove onne the Est parte ande the greate Wode ca1led Thoby Woode and the
Woode of Blakanne onne the West parte, buttinge uppon Whyts crofts towarde the
northe, ande upon a felde callede Burnefelde, the Orcharde & the Pitell
with two poundes therin foresayede toward the South, ande conteyneth … lxi ac.
Item, A nother felde callede Rayshotte,
lyinge betwene a felde called Postonfelde onne the West parte ande Redewodes
ande Panmede onne the Est parte, ande butteyth uppon free wode towarde the
Southe ande Whyts crofte toward the north, & conteyneth … xxx acres. di.
Medowe. - Item, a medowe called panmede, lyinge betwene Cristemas Croft
and landes called Leonardes Landes on the Est, ande Rayshotte ande Fregrove
onne the West, ande butteyth on Hoppetts towarde the South ande Rayshotte
foresayede towarde the north, & conteyneth … ij ac. di. di. roade.
Item, thre Crofts with cartayne Hedgerowes called Whyth crofts lying to gether
betwene Rayshotte onn the Est parte and a woode, Blakemore Woode onne the West
parte, buttinge uppon Postonfelde towarde the Southe, ande uppon landes called Woodberne
lande, Burgeys lande and Fynches toward the north, ande conteyneth … xiij
Item, a Felde called Barnefelde, lyinge
betwene a waye ledinge to the greate Woode theare onn the South and Postonfelde
on the north, ande butteyth uppon the barnyarde and the Orcharde toward the
Est, ande the sayede greate Woode towarde the West, & conteyneth … vij ac.
i di. roade.
Woode-lande. - Item, The greate Woode of
Thoby, lyinge betwene Postonfelde ande Barnesfelde onne the Est parte, ande Hokys
onne the Weste parte ande butteyth upon a felde cafleyde Knyghts felde towarde
the South, ande a Woode called Blakemore Woode toward the north, & conteyneth
… xxix acres.
Item, a felde called Hokys, lyinge betwene
the greate Woode of Thobye onn the Est part ande Themers ande Blakemore Woode
onn the west parte, and butteyth uppon Knyghts felde and the Chemers toward the
South, ande Blakemore Woode foresayde towarde the north, & conteyneth … xxv
Item, a felde callede Knyghts felde, lyinge
betwene the Lane leding from Mountenessinge to Blakemore onne the south, ande
Hokys the greate woode of Thoby & the lane ledinge to the sayde woode onn
the North part, & butteyth uppon a lane ledinge from the late Pryorye of
Thobye to London hie way toward the Est, & Chemers & Barnewelle towarde
the west, & conteyneth … lxvij ac. di.
LANDES LETTEYN BY ANDENTURE.
Furst, John Cooke holdeyth by Indenture a Hallehous with the yarde and
out howsinge called Wascatts, lyinge betwene the Smythys forge, the Orcharde
ande the mede, sometyme pethys onn the West parte ande a pece of lande called
Tynte onn Est parte, & butteyth upon the Kyngs hye way toward the south,
ande a Medewe calleyde Brodesmede toward the north, and conteyneth … oon acre.
Item, A mede called Brodesmede in the
teanure of the sayde John, lyinge betwene Wascatts & Tynts on the south
parte, ande a Pasture called Brodys Pasture onne the north, ande butteyth uppon
Peches mede towarde the west, ande the landes of Thomas Malbroke towarde the
Est, & conteyneth … ij ac. i roode.
Item, a Pasture called
Brods pasture, in the teanure of the said John, lyinge between - on the west
parte, ande Yms landes ande Bedwells Gardeyn towarde the Est, & butteyth
upon Brods mede toward the south, and a lane called Capellane toward the north,
ande conteyneth … xiij acres.
Item, a felde called
Romefelde, lyinge betwene a lane ledynge towarde Blakernore ande called
Newlande onn the North parte, ande Parkefelde towarde the south, ande butteyth
uppon Roundemede towarde the Est, and Newlande foresayde toward the west, &
conteyneth … xiij ac. di. i rode.
Item, a Croft calleyde Skypyscroft, in the teanure of the sayede John,
lyinge betwene the landes of Stonage onne the south, ande Lambourns gardeyn
place on the north, ande butteyth uppon a lane ledinge to Blakemore towarde the
Est, ande a mede calleyede Roundesmede towarde the west, & conteyneth … one
Item, a Medowe calleyede Roundemede, in the
teanure of the sayede John, lyinge betwene the Landes of John Wiseman, callede
the - onne the south parte, ande a Felde
called Romefelde onne the North parte, and butteythe uppon Styppescroft &
Lamboras gardeyn toward the Est, and Wisemans foresayde toward the West, &
conteyneth … ii acr. di.
Item, a Croft callede London Croft, in the
teanure of the same John, lyinge betwene Mallesfelde onne the North parte &
the Horsewaye ledinge to Blakemore onn the South, and butteyth upon the same
way toward the west, & the landes of John Wiseman, somtym of - Gaynesforde called Takeley toward the Est,
and conteyneth … ij acres.
Item, a Felde withe a Orcharde called
Dolingtons, in the teanure of the said John, lying betwene a lane ledinge to
fewwaters onne the west part, and the Lane leadinge toward Blakemore &
partley landes called Newlands on the Est parte, & butteyth uppon the sayed
wey leading to Blakemore towarde the North & Newland toward the South,
& conteyneth … iij ac. i rode.
Item, A Medowe called Romemede, lyinge betwene the lande of John Wiseman
called Takeleys onne the South parte, ande the landes of Maister Culpepur onn
the North, & butteyth upon Romefeld toward the Est, & the landes of
Maister Culpepur & a mede called Rutters mede towarde the West, & conteyneth
… v. acr. di.
Item, a nother medowe called Rutters mede,
lying betweyne Rutersfelde on the South and the landes of Maister Culpepur onne
the North, butting upon a Medowe called Clerksmede toward the west, and
Romemede toward the Est, & conteying … i acre. di.
Item, a Felde conteyning three littell Crofts, lyinge betwene the landes
of Thomas Peper onne the west and the landes of John Wiseman on the Est, and
butteyth upon London Waye & partley upon Hongerdowne
toward the South & Ruttersmede toward the north, & conteyneth … v ac.
di. i rode.
Item, Thomas Malbroke holdeyth by Indenture a
Felde conteyning three littill pieces called Tyntts, lying betwene the lande
late in the teanure of Jynnys & parteley a Gardeyn, somtyme of Thomas Cosyn
on the Est parte, & Wiscatts on the West parte, & butteyth upon London
waye toward the south, & Brodesmede & partley upon Brodesfelde toward
the north, & conteyneth … iij acres.
Item, William Compar
holdeyth by Indenture a Felde called Mollande, lyinge betwene a way ledinge to
Mountenesynge halle onne the south, and the landes of Thomas Heron onne the North,
and butteyth upon a croft callede Defehousse croft towarde the West, and the
land the sayd Thomas Heron, & a Felde callede Pasys toward the Est, &
conteyneth … xlvij ac. di.
Item, John Smyth holdeyth by Indenture a
House called Nossells, with Yards, Gardeyns, Orchardes and out Housings
belonging to the sayede House, lyinge betwene Nossells mede on the south, &
a lane ledinge to - toward the North,
& butteyth upon the sayede mede toward est, & upon a grene lyinge
before the gate of the sd Howse toward the west, and conteyneth … Di. acre vi
Item, a Medowe called Nossells mede, in the
teanure of the sayede John Smyth, lyinge betwene the Downe on the Est ande the
Orcharde belonginge to the same Howse, ande parteleye the landes of Rycharde
Whyte onne the west, & butteyth uppon a Croft called Parcroft toward the South,
and a lane ledinge to the Downe & partelye upon Nossells place towarde the
North, and conteyneth … iiij acres di.
Item, a felde callede the
Downe, in the teanure of the same John, lyinge betwene a Woode called
Hallewoode towarde the south and south hose on north, ande butteyth upon a
medowe called Nossells mede toward the West, & a felde called Donynge
toward the Est, & conteyneth … ix ac. di. i rode.
a Felde callede Donyngs, lyinge betwene ynge Halwoode on the South ande Hoton Hollande
onne the Northe, & butteyth upon a felde called the Downefelde towarde the
West, ande Stonyhill towarde the Est, ande conteyneth … xv acres.
Item, Stonyhill, in the teanure of the same John Smyth, lyinge betwene
Yngehallewoode on the South, and Hutton Hallonde on the north, ande buttevth
upon Donynges towarde the west, ande Hutton Halstonhille towarde the Est, &
conteyneth … iiij acres.
Item, a felde called the Redon, lyinge
betwene a lane called Redenlane on the Est, ande Yngrave hollande on the west,
ande butteyth upon Hutton Hollande ande parteley onne the lands of Richard
Whyte toward the North, & Hollande toward the South, ande conteyneth … ix
ac. di. i rode di.
Item, a Felde called Taylours in the teanure
of the same John, lyinge betwene the landes of Richard Whyte ande parteley a
croft called parkecrofte on the est, ande a lane called Redeyn land on the
West, and butteyth upon landes called the Chappell landes of Brentwode toward
the south, ande the lane ledinge from Nossells to Redow toward the north, &
conteyneth .. ix ac. di. i rode.
LANDES LETTEN BY COPYE.
Ffurst, Thomas Heron holdeth by Copye a felde called Skyrns, lyinge
betwene a felde called upper Brodeffelde on the south, and Hulbushe ande Rogers
landes on the North, & butteyth upon a lane called Wryers lane towarde the
Est, & upon parcell of Brodesfelde foresayde toward the West, ande
conteyneth … x ac. i rode.
Item, the same Thomas
holdeyth by copye a Felde called - , lyinge betwene Colchesters landes on the
South, and the landes of John Shorday & Hulbushe toward the north, and
butteyth upon Wryers lane toward the Est, & Colchesters lande ande parteley
upon the landes of Wyllyam Ayloff towarde the West, and conteyneth … iij ac.
Item, John Shorday, thelder, holdeyth by
copye a felde called - , lyinge in three parcells, with a saferne gardeyn
called Hogdennys, lyinge betwene the hie wave leding to London on the Est
parte, ande Takeleys on the West, & butteyth upon the landes of John
Wiseman toward the South, and a Reyv leding to Mountenessingehalle toward the
North, conteyninge … v ac. di. i rode vij per.
Item, John Wiseman holdeyth by Copye a Felde called Takeleys londe,
lyinge betwene Shordeys lande called Huddas on the east ande Rememede onne the
West, ande butteyth upon the landes of John Wiseman toward the South, and
Rondmede & the Ryver ledinge to Mountenessinge toward the north,
conteyninge … iiij ac. di.
Item, The same John holdeyth by Copye too
crofts ande a medewe called Stonage, lying betweene the hye waye to Londe onne
the Est, ande Skypescroft & Romesmede on the West, & butteyth upon the
lane ledinge to Blakemore towarde the north, & on the river leding to
Mountnessing Hall toward the south, and conteyneth … iiij acres.
Item, William Lamborne holdeth by copye a gardeyn called Lambornes
gardeyn, lyinge betwene Stonage onne the South and Romefelde on the North,
& butteyth upon lanestrete & Blakemore towarde the Est, & a medewe
called Roundesmede towarde the west, & conteynethe .. di. rode
Item, Robert Brette holdeyth by Copye a Tenement with a pytell callede
Rutters, lying betweene a lane ledinge to Thobye on the Est part, & a lane
callede Capellane on the West, & butteyth upon the Lands of John Wiseman
towarde the North, & a lane ledinge from Thobye foresayde to London towarde
the South, conteyinge … di. acre.
Item, Wyllyam Malbroke, now
deceasede, holdeyth by copye too crofte of lande callede Whyte Jaks, lyinge
betwene the landes of Thomas Heron on the Est & landes callede Colchesters
land onne the west, & butteyth upon a lane callede depe Alnys toward the
South, & conteyneth … iij ac. di. i rode di.
Item, Willyam Ayluff holdeyth by copye vi croftes of lande called
Chanfehope & Hoks, lieng betwixte long Coks, and xx acres (south), &
Braynewodds grove (north), abutt upon the hygh waye to London toward the este,
and upon gret powes toward the west, cont. … x ac. ii perches.