The Domesday Book account of the county borough occupies a unique place in volume I of the survey. Unlike other settlements, it is not usually described within the seigneurial framework of the inquest, despite the considerable interests of the tenants-in-chief within it, but is enrolled in toto at the head of the county. As an administrative and social centre of a large unit of central government, it appears as if its nature and specialized functions defied the catagories of the Domesday commissioners and called for individual treatment. Its apparent importance in this respect, however, is often belied by the substance of the account. It frequently appears ad hoc and terse beyond comprehension, and betrays every sign of hasty and careless composition. Moreover, the type of information that it contains is sometimes radically different from that of the rest of the text.[1] The borough, then, is a special type of settlement and must be studied separately from the seigneurial breves. Nevertheless, the question still remains whether its peculiarities of form are entirely due to its unique position within the county.

            The Domesday Book account of Nottingham comprises the whole of column f.280a of volume I and, as is common form in circuit 6, it is enrolled before the breves of the county. Somewhat anomalously, it is immediately followed by the description of the borough of Derby, for in 1086, and probably for a long time before, the two counties had been jointly administered.[2] The customs of the two shires, a list of landholders, and the main body of the Nottinghamshire text  then  follow in the usual way. The description of the town exhibits a neat conceptual structure based upon three chronological points of reference. The first two paragraphs relate to Nottingham in 1066, the third to the state of the town when Hugh son of Baldric became sheriff and the developments during his time in office, and the fourth to various interests at the time of the Domesday Book and the value of the borough.[3] The remainder of the account is devoted to the holders of land in Nottingham in 1086, with a note on roads and the River Trent.[4]

            Despite the apparent unity of the account, however, it was not all written at one time. Different stages in its composition can be detected by variations in the hand (figure 15). Entries no. 1, 4-10, 12-15, 17 and 18 were apparently written first, but a space was left for nos. 2 and 3. These two entries are concerned with the lands that Earl Tosti held in Nottingham before his expulsion from office in 1065, and Hugh son of Baldric's activities as sheriff. Such foreseen additions to the text are not unknown, especially in the terra regis. The phenomenon suggests that the scribe did not have the required information before him in his exemplar, or was not sure of its import or relevance, and only subsequently acquired it from a separate source.[5] This would not be surprising in this context, for Earl Tosti's estate was probably not part of the borough in 1066.[6] Entries no. 11 and 16 are also post-scriptal, but were apparently unforeseen additions for they are squeezed onto the last line of entries no. 10 and 15. It may be significant that the houses belonged to the only individuals who were not tenants-in-chief. Finally, entries nos. 19 and 20 appear to have been appended to the end of the column, although not necessarily both at the same time. No.19 relates to the one carucate of land which King Edward had in 1066 and which William held in 1086. In an urban context, the entry is anomolous, for it is manorial in form and has a value for both 1066 and 1086. It appears to be the same parcel of land that is enrolled in the king's breve as Notintone, that is Sneinton.[7] As late as the thirteenth century there was still some doubt about the exact status of the estate.[8] Entry no. 20 is a note on the fines imposed upon those who encroached on the River Trent in Nottingham,[9] the dyke,[10] and the road to York.


Figure 15: the Domesday account of Nottingham.


            The scribe, then, evidently had a clear idea of the form of the account, but the information was not always present. It is also apparent that he was not always sure of his material for the organisation of the data is by no means perfect. Thus entries no. 4-6 conflate three apparently separate items into one paragraph. The first deals with borough houses which belonged to a church on the king's demesne, and its land. Subsequently, further details are given of the estate and its value in the section relating to holders of land in 1086. There then follows a statement of the amount of land which the burgesses plough which appears to duplicate information in the first paragraph. Finally, there is a record of a plea concerning the rights to fish in the Trent. The scribe seems to have bundled together miscellaneous items of information relevant to the issues of the borough before recording its value in entry no. 7.

            These characteristics contrast with the discernible method employed in the breves. There were, of course emendations and additions to each fief, but, by and large, the scribe of the Exchequer text seems to have followed the form of an exemplar. Thus, no attempt was made to reorganise the geographically arranged account of Roteland into the standard seigneurial form. Compilation as such, then, was almost certainly complete before the original returns were sent to Winchester.[11] It was there that a fair copy alone was made, with some abbreviation of the material, and the whole account was checked and revised. The source material for the account of Nottingham, by way of contrast, appears to have been less formulated, and the Exchequer scribe may have had to compile it himself. Moreover, the record of data for three distinct periods contrasts starkly with the form of the body of the text. In circuit 6, information is normally given for 1066 and 1086. However, the approach in the borough is more consistent with the articles recorded in the Inquisitio Eliensis: data were to be collected for 1066, when William gave the land, and the time of  the  survey.[12] Whether these were the articles of the Domesday inquest, a composite collection of articles, or a draft copy, is not absolutely clear,[13] but it is evident that the account of Nottingham comes from a source other than that of the breves, or from an earlier stage in the enquiry. It is only in the terra regis that comparable characteristics are found,[14] and it is therefore possible that the material is derived from an initial survey of royal land alone.[15] The separate treatment of the borough, then, may not be entirely a result of its separate nature and functions.[16] It may also be a function of the source material that the Domesday scribe had before him. Deriving the information from a source other than that of the breves, as a copyist, he made no attempt to rearrange it in the form of the text as a whole. With only the minimum of compilation to make it comprehensible, he simply enrolled the borough in a separate section.

            There is little explicit information in the text to elucidate the nature of tenure and its different forms in the borough of Nottingham. The king and the earl enjoyed the soke of Earl Tosti's carucate of land, and there is evidence for an old and a new borough. The king also had sake and soke over the land of the church.[17] Important evidence, however, is provided by the structure of the account. The subject matter is divided into two distinct sections, one of which is emphasised by the use of a distinctive calligraphic device. The first is a general description of the borough and concludes with a record of how much Nottingham rendered to the king in 1066 and 1086.[18] The second consists almost entirely of a description of the land of named individuals, six of whom were tenants-in-chief, in addition to land of the king and houses in the town ditch. With the exception of the last, postscriptal entry, each entry in the section is distinguished by a flag in the left-hand margin. This bi-partite form is common in the description of the Domesday boroughs: it is found in the account of Derby where the two parts were originally separated by a space. It was subsequently employed, however, to enroll an account of the manor of Litchurch which rendered with the borough.[19] The accounts of Stamford, Lincoln, York, and Huntingdon, in common with those of county boroughs in other circuits, are similarly divided.[20]

            Each of the two sections has a distinctive identity. It is clear that the first is concerned with the income that the king derived from the borough for no other interested party is named. In 1066 there were 173 burgesses and 19 villeins in Nottingham. By 1086, there were only 120 men, but 13 houses had been built in the new borough which had been placed in the farm (census) of the old.[21] But the nature of the relationship between the king and the burgesses is not explicit. In the comparable section of the account of the borough of Derby, however, it is said that the king has two pennies, and the earl the third, from  the gable, toll, forfeitures, and all customs of the burgesses.[22] A study of the Domesday boroughs in circuit 6 suggests that the term consuetudo or consuetudines, custom or customs, lies at the heart of the matter. In Stamford, for example, it is stated that the mansiones in the first section rendered all customs.[23] It is nowhere stated in what these dues consisted, but the term seems to be a portmanteau word for all those exactions that the king might expect from the inhabitants of a town. Some of them, however, can be discerned from the record of the partial immunities recorded in the text. The sixth ward of Stamford paid all custom except toll and landgable, Lewin held all custom except geld, and Queen Edith had every custom except those relating to baking.[24] From elsewhere in Domesday Book, it is clear that forfeitures, heriot, local monetary dues for military service, ward duty, and even personal services like carriage and custody of prisoners were also included.[25] It is clear that only these townspeople who paid custom contributed to the farm of the town. Thus, in the Domesday accounts of both Nottingham and Derby the value of the borough is given at the end of the customary section.[26] In this sense, it was they alone who were burgesses of the community, although the term was used of other inhabitants of the town.[27] Since the king and the earl received their forfeitures, it is evident that they were in the soke of the crown. If their status was analogous to that of royal sokemen, so was their tenure  for  the  legal form of customary land was much the same as that of sokeland of the terra regis. As we have already seen,[28] the term consuetudines appears to be synonymous with the dues rendered to the king from land in the soke of Oswaldbeck. There were, moreover, remarkable similarities in the customs of tenure. Thus, ultimogeniture, a feature of socage tenure in many manors in the county, is also found in the English borough in Nottingham.[29] The relationship was of a similar tributary kind, although the actual dues rendered often differed considerably.[30] The burgess of the eleventh century, then, if only in legal form, shared many characteristics with the rural sokeman.

            In the second section of the Nottingham text, 191 houses are recorded which were held by nine named individuals, one of whom was the king. Twenty five are said to be horsemen's houses (domus equitum) and 48 merchants' (domus mercatorum). There were a further 23 houses of which no further details of tenure are given.[31] The inclusion of royal land suggests that the section has some distinctive identity. The dues of the crown appear in the first section, yet land of the church over which the king has sake and soke is separately recorded. Indeed, the note of the value of the estate indicates a tenurial nexus other than that of the borough.[32] That this is a general  characteristic  of  the group is illustrated by the appearance of a flag in the left-hand margin against each entry. Such apparently trivial devices are rarely ad hoc. They are usually used consistently and for a specific purpose. The flag is no exception. It appears within the text as an overflow mark, that is, when one entry is continued in an empty space on the line above or below. The marginal variety is found in the Clamores in Lincolnshire, Huntingdonshire, and Yorkshire where it indicates separate cases.[33] In the breves it is less common, but is used to call attention to exceptional or additional material.[34] It is more commonly encountered, however, in the description of boroughs. It usually does not appear against customary land, but only that held by named individuals who enjoyed considerable liberties. Thus, in Stamford the flag is found against those entries where the lord did not pay all customs.[35] In Derby it is used consistently in every entry in the second section with the exception of one parcel of land from part of which the king derived an income.[36] But, significantly, the flag is also used against customary tenements in Huntingdon which were vacant.[37] This characteristic points to the essential function of the device when not used as a mere annotation. It is clearly intended to show that the king, for whatever reason, did not expect any issues from the properties noted. Since the value of the borough appears at the end of the first section, it would appear that the second part of the description of Nottingham, as with the same section in other boroughs is merely a memorandum which defines the limits of the king's interests.[38] In the lands of the tenants-in-chief, it was usually the lord's liberty which circumscribed the interests of the crown within the borough. In Derby, Huntingdon, and Lincoln, as in the one explicit instance in Nottingham, the nature of the immunity is expressed by the term sake and soke.[39] The franchise, it seems, amounts to freedom from custom. Thus, in Huntingdon 'Earl Siward had one messuage with sake and soke exempt from custom'.[40] In Lincoln, Countess Judith had a messuage in succession to Stori without sake and soke, and this was evidently customary for Ivo Taillebois claimed it through the burgesses, that is as part of the borough.[41] The liberty of sake and soke, by conferring full title to the land and all the dues that the king might expect from it, transferred consuetudines from the crown to a lord. This, then, would appear to be the basic feature of the mansiones of the tenants-in-chief in the second section. The land was not part of the borough  from which the king expected dues, but was booked to other interests. The fundamental dichotomy between the two sections is indeed recognised in the description of Nottingham. As we have seen, the account of the church appears in two separate entries. Although it was the king's demesne, it possessed 'three mansiones of the borough', along with land which may also have been customary.[42] It is therefore appropriate that the fact should be recorded in the account of the borough proper, that is the first section. By way of contrast, the priest's croft with 65 houses was held with sake and soke and was thus not 'of the borough'.[43] It therefore appears in the second section. As already  noted,  the separate value points to a distinct tenurial nexus other than the borough. The church thus appears in both sections because it held customary and non-customary land. It seems likely that all the land of the tenants-in-chief recorded in the Nottingham Domesday was non-customary in the same way.

            The possession of sake and soke appears to have conferred a degree of independence upon the privileged estate within the borough. As with the booking of sokeland, the tenants were removed from certain aspects of royal administration. The characteristics of the liberties in urban context are illustrated by the subsequent history of such lands in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Typically, where such tenements survived, they constituted a separate fee within the borough. The best documented example in the area of the Five Boroughs is the 23 houses and two churches that Eudo Dapifer held in Stamford in succession to Ernuin the priest and Ezi.[44] The customs of the estate had only been withdrawn from the king between 1066 and 1086. But in 1156, the estate was held by William de Lanvalei and was expressly excluded from the grant of the borough of Stamford to Richard Humet.[45] In 1212, it was said to be held in chief of the king by free burgage.[46] As such, it was exempt from tallages levied on the town, despite the attempts of the burgesses to impose the incident.[47] In 1275, the lord, John de Burgh, had a free court in the town, with the assize of bread and ale, and possibly a pillory. That he exercised these rights is indicated by the complaint that the bailiffs of the Earl of Warenne, the  lord  of  Stamford, illegally demanded suit of his tenants.[48] In 1284 a jury declared that the estate was a parcel of his manor of Wakerley in Northamptonshire.[49] Nevertheless, the lord still had to pay suit twice a year to the borough court.[50]

            Eudo's fee was large and managed to retain its identity into the fifteenth century. The evidence for its existence survived because, as an integral part of a rural manor, it repeatedly appears in extents in the process of successive inquisitions post mortem. By way of contrast, where such fees were, or became, purely urban, documentation does not always survive. In Nottingham, however, there is evidence that some of the non-customary estates maintained their identity into the later Middle Ages. In Henry's II's charter of liberties of c.1155 the men of all fees in Nottingham were enjoined to pay tallages with the burgesses.[51] Sneinton emerged in the thirteenth century as a manor in ancient demesne, although it was by then outside the borough.[52] Some of these fees, although absent from the predominantly official and burghal documentation, may have been subject to private courts. In 1219, Gilbert le Gluton held land and an oven in Nottingham by sergeancy as a royal bailiff errant.[53] The fee was held in chief, and was probably quite extensive. A case brought against Gilbert in the curia regis in 1225 by William son of Simon sought the seisin of  seven  crofts  and   half  an oven in Nottingham.[54] Subsequently, it was described as tenements, and later a messuage, with an oven.[55] Part of the fee may have been situated in the Saturday Market  for John son of Geoffrey le Gaoler, who was granted the estate in 1306, held at least one toft there within the English Borough.[56] But the oven was probably located off Wheeler Gate, possibly in the present Eldon Chambers, for in 1395/6 a tenement on that street was said to abut on a common lane (venella) leading to Gilbert le Gluton's oven.[57] The fee can be traced into the late fourteenth century, and throughout the possession of an oven or bakehouse is usually carefully noted.[58] As a capital tenement, this might imply that Gilbert and his successors had the assize of bread. He was probably not alone in possessing this type of franchise. In a document of 1370 or 1378, some 12 individuals with tenements spread throughout the western part of the town, are said to have not been within the mayor's liberty of the assize of ale in Nottingham.[59] As we have already seen,[60] the assizes were one of the perquisites of a private urban court, and the corporation clearly did not have a monopoly in this field. Evidence for the earlier history of Gilbert le Gluton's fee is wanting. But the assizes were part of the borough customs in the eleventh century, and it is possible that it is represented by the estate of Wulfbert or  Richard Frail at the time of Domesday Book.[61] In only one case, however, has positive evidence for a private court come to light. In 1276 an inquisition post mortem jury declared that certain tenants of William Bardolf in Nottingham and elsewhere rendered 49 shillings 4 pence per annum and one pound of cumin, and owed suit to his court in Shelford.[62] No other evidence for this fee has come to light, although Robert de Cauz the lord of Shelford granted a messuage between the castle and the Trent to Newstead Priory in the late twelfth century.[63] But the association between the manor and the town appears to have been ancient for Geoffrey Alselin, the lord in 1086, held 21 houses in Nottingham at the time of Domesday Book.[64]

The Domesday tenements held with sake and soke are not a homogeneous group. Circuit 6 reveals a variety of different types of estate: urban sokes, land, presumably legally, withdrawn from the king's customs, ecclesiastical liberties etc..[65] But the most common is akin to the Shelford example. The type of relationship is referred to in the Cheshire Domesday:

The land on which St. Peter's Temple stands and which Robert of Rhuddlan claimed as thaneland, never belonged to a manor outside of the city (of Chester), as the county proved, but belonged to the borough, and was always in the king's and the earl's customary dues like the land of the other burgesses.[66]

Almost all the mansiones of the tenants-in-chief in the circuit 6 boroughs appear to be of the type that were attached to manors in the countryside. Since they did not render to the king, the custom was presumably paid to the lord. Moreover, it is clear that the tenurial nexus was not in the borough itself. Urban fees of this kind, like the bishop of Lincoln's manor in Leicester, or Queen Edith's fee in Stamford, usually have a value appended to them if held by a tenant-in-chief.[67] On the contrary, the absence of a value for most urban estates in Domesday Book tends to suggest that the tenurial nexus was elsewhere, that is, the value of the manor also included the value of its urban appurtenances.[68]

            Nottingham is no exception in this respect. Only the church has a separate value,[69] thereby suggesting that it alone was a purely urban and self-contained fee. There are features of the account, however, which are unusual. The Nottingham text is the only description of a Domesday borough in circuit 6 in which the pre-Conquest holders of land are not generally given. The information is usually recorded for it not only established title, but also identified the tenement. It incidentally also establishes that many of the links between urban fees and rural estates were pre-Conquest in origin. The absence of the data in Nottingham may be symptomatic of significant differences in the early development of the town. There are indeed several characteristics which suggest that Nottingham experienced a number of pressures which were not present in other county boroughs.

            In 1086 the town was divided into what were subsequently  known  as the English and the French boroughs. Throughout the Middle Ages the two institutions had distinctive identities marked by individual customs and separate administration.[70] As the name suggests, the English borough qua borough was the more ancient. Its area in the later mediaeval period (figure 16) has been elegantly elucidated by the use of mostly late mediaeval and early modern property deeds and quarter session minutes.[71] There is no comparable evidence for the earlier period. But the decisive relationship, the boundary between the two boroughs, is probably an ancient feature. Peculiarities of custom and tenure imply continuity, and the conjunction of the line for much of its course with the St. Mary/St. Peter parish boundary suggests that there had been no substantial change since the establishment of the parochial system as a territorial institution before the mid twelfth century.[72] The borough so identified as a legal entity encompassed the pre-Conquest defended area, and abutted on the Saturday Market. With the exception of a few tenements on the east side of Bridlesmith Gate, it was almost exactly co-extensive with the urban parish of St. Mary.

            As we have already seen,[73] the king had sake and soke over a large urban estate which consisted of a church and the priest's croft, containing some 65 houses, and held a further three customary mansiones and land in the fields, which were all worth 100 shillings per annum.[74] Although not named, it is clear from the history of the foundation that this church was St Mary's, for the crown maintained a continuing interest in it. Thus, in c.1106, William Peverel granted the  church  to his new monastery at Lenton as part of its endowment. However, he only did so with the express consent of Henry I.[75] In the thirteenth century Henry III challenged the priory's right to the church, although he granted it to them for the term of his life.[76] By way of contrast, the king appears to have had no interest in the churches of the French borough. The fee of the church is the largest recorded estate in Nottingham in 1066, and its value at five pounds was not inconsiderable. The borough itself, apart from the mint, only rendered 30 pounds,[77] and 91% of all manors in Nottinghamshire in 1086 were worth less than five pounds. No firm evidence has come to light to indicate the location of the fee, but the use of the term crofta, croft, suggests that the houses formed a well-defined group, and we may expect the church to have formed a nucleus. On purely topographical grounds, this might suggest that the area bounded by St. Mary's Gate, Stoney Street, and High Pavement, with the church at the southern end, defines the estate (figure 16). However, this is mere speculation. But further work on the deeds relating to the glebe of the church would go a long way to resolving the problem.[78]


Figure 16: the English and French Boroughs in Nottingham.

            The estate as a whole appears to have been closely identified with the interests of the crown. It was in demesne in 1066, and the king had sake and soke over it. As bookland, he presumably maintained a close control over the fee, and, as such, it was withdrawn from the customary nexus of the borough itself. Nevertheless, the extent of St. Mary's parish suggests that the authority associated with the church  had  had, and probably continued to maintain, a dominant role in the borough. In the thirteenth century the parish encompassed the whole of the territory of Nottingham, with the exception of the small urban enclaves of St. Peter and St. Nicholas, and the area of the extra-parochial castle and Park.[79] At an earlier period, it had probably been even more extensive. Sneinton was king's land in 1066 and was apparently appended to Nottingham. By 1234, the church of the settlement belonged to Lenton, and it almost certainly came to the priory by right of St. Mary's.[80] Indeed, in the early fifteenth century it was called a chapel.[81]

            The simplicity of ecclesiastical structure is striking. By the end of the tenth and the beginning of the eleventh centuries, one of the key characteristics of bookland was the appropriation of ecclesiastical dues. Thanes increasingly began to build churches on their own land as much to enjoy the tithe as to bring spiritual sustenance to their men.[82] Within the confines of the borough, the process led to a proliferation of parishes as each lord made provision for his own tenants. Thus, the Domesday account of Derby records six churches, four of which were on non-customary land.[83] In other boroughs and cities, churches multiplied without constraint. By 1200 there were thirteen in Stamford, while in Lincoln there were no less than 43 by c. 1150.[84] Nottingham, then, stands out as exceptional. Despite  apparent  tenurial heterogeneity in 1086, much of the borough was in the parish of a royal church, and the number of parishes in the Middle Ages never exceeded three or possibly four.[85] The lack of development of other churches may suggest, then, that the freedom of potential or actual non-customary fees was circumscribed. Either they did not emerge in the borough until after the establishment of a stable parochial system, or royal control limited the rights of any fees to found their own church.[86] In either case, the authority and influence of the crown within the borough of Nottingham is emphasised.

            The concentration of royal authority in the town is probably an ancient feature of the settlement.[87] Its association with a major parish church implies that St. Mary's was an ecclesiastical foundation of primary importance. Some claims can indeed be made for its antiquity. Excavations in the town have revealed traces of a ditch system which, if extended, would enclose the church on the north side. This system, parallel to, but to the north of, the later defences, extended down towards the present course of the Leen, and is stratigraphically earlier than the ramparts of the English Borough.[88] If  part of  the  complex, the parish church, then, would be one of the earliest identifiable topographical features of the settlement. It might be expected that such an early foundation, especially if royal, had been constituted as a royal minster with a large parochia. Comparable institutions are to be found in Derby, Leicester, and Lincoln,[89] but no unequivocal vestige of such an organisation has come to light in Nottingham.[90] The lack of evidence, however, may merely reflect the subsequent history of the church. Its appropriation by Lenton Priory, along with many other churches of the Peverel fee, may have obscured early relationships for it is usually impossible to determine whether thirteenth-century pensions were derived from the ancient rights of a particular foundation or more recent arrangements for the financial management of a house's spiritualities.[91] The origin and early status of St. Mary's Church, Nottingham, then, must remain an open question.

            The two parishes of St. Peter and St. Nicholas are situated between the extra-parochial castle and the urban part of St. Mary's parish. They are both small in area and almost entirely urban, and are surrounded by the parish of St. Mary's. With no share in  the  common  fields  of  the town, it seems likely that they are relatively late foundations, and took their territory from the larger church.[92] It is not surprising, then, that, with the exception of tenements on the east side of Bridle-smith Gate and possibly the south side of the Saturday Market, they are conterminous with the area of the French Borough of the later Middle Ages (figure 16). The new borough is first mentioned in Domesday Book, and, as its name indicates, it was an institution which was closely associated with the Norman presence in the town. The castle of Nottingham was built by William the Conqueror in 1068 at the beginning of his campaign in the North as part of a concerted strategy of garrisoning centres of population in a potentially hostile Mercia and securing the main lines of communication with Yorkshire.[93] As at Norwich and Northampton, a French borough was probably founded at the same time.[94] The present Castle Gate, Hounds Gate, and Friar Lane appear to be planned in relation to the eastern gate of the castle, and probably form the nucleus of the borough.

            It is unlikely, however, that it was built on a virgin site. Rather, it almost certainly encompassed a pre-Conquest estate nucleus of some importance. Superficially the Domesday passage which refers to the new borough, appears to indicate a new settlement for Hugh son of Baldric built 13 houses in the new borough which were not there before. However in novo burgo is a interlineation and it is thus clear that it is parenthetical. The whole passage can be rendered thus, with the later additions in brackets:-

Hugh son of Baldric [the sheriff] found 136 men; now there are 16 less; however, Hugh erected 13 houses himself, which were not there before, on the earl's land [in the new borough] and placed them among the dues of the old borough.[95]

In this reading, the contrast is not between new and old boroughs, but between the earl's land and the old borough. The two institutions were distinct. Indeed, as we have seen,[96] entries no. B2 and 3, in which reference is made to the earl's land, are later additions, and are almost certainly drawn from a source other than that of the body of the text, for at least one of the entries refers to a period anterior to 1065 when Tosti was disposed. It was therefore necessary to note that the new houses, which ought to have been in the earl's soke, contributed to the king's custom and were consequently in the old borough. By implication, this tends to suggest that there were already other houses there. The earl in question is evidently Tosti, and the land the one carucate he held before the Conquest. This estate was clearly royal, or possibly comital, for both the king and the earl had the soke.[97] Tosti probably held it as Earl of Northumbria for in the later years of the reign of Edward the Confessor, Nottinghamshire appears to have been part of the earldom.[98] Thus, while the French borough was evidently built on the earl's land, there was already an estate nucleus there before the Conquest.

            Tosti's activities in the shire are shrouded in obscurity. It is therefore difficult to appreciate the nature and function of this estate and its relationship with the borough  and  the  other  estates  in  the county. However, in extent it was probably not confirmed to Nottingham, but may have extended into the neighbouring territory of Lenton (figure 17). In 1086 there  were  three  holdings  in  the  settlement.  William Peverel's soke had belonged to Morcar's manor of Newbound in the wapentake of Broxtow, or Earl Morcar's manor of Newbold in Bingham. The identification is difficult, but the wapentake sequence of the breve suggests that the former should be preferred.[99] The Morcar who held this manor was almost certainly Earl Morcar - he is not always given his title in Domesday Book, but when it appears in circuit 6, it is always interlined - who succeeded to Tosti's earldom in 1065.[100] If a comital estate, some connection with Tosti's land in Nottingham might be expected. Wulfnoth's manor may also have been attached to the estate. He himself was the tenant in both 1066 and 1086, but William Peverel held the land in custody. Three other estates are said to have been held in likewise by William.[101] Ulfketel's land in Eastwood and Alwin's in Awsworth were waste and untenanted. The description of Aswulf's land in Basford was deleted, but is duplicated later in William's breve, and a second time in the land of the king's thanes.[102] Land held by William Peverel in Clifton and Sutton Passeys is also duplicated in the same way.[103] It is evident, then, that the land held  in  custody  was  that  of thanes who, in the normal course of events, would have owed service to the king or the earl. As in Derbyshire,[104] William represented many of the interests of the king in Nottinghamshire. Wulfnoth, then, may well have been one of Tosti's Nottinghamshire thanes to whom Edward the Confessor addressed a writ in 1060x1065.[105]


Figure 17: land associated with the earl's estate in Nottingham.








 c. b.






soke of Arnold

King Edward

the king


 2  0

soke of Neubold









            The relationship between William Peverel's land and the comital estate in Nottingham may, however, have gone beyond the custody of a few royal or comital thanes. Most of his manors were situated in the wapentakes of Broxtow and Rushcliffe, with a remarkable concentration around Nottingham itself. With the exception of soke of Geoffrey Alselin's manor of Stoke (Bardolf) in Carlton, Gedling, and Colwick,[106] the whole of the town was completely surrounded by Peverel land. More than half of the wapentake of Broxtow and a quarter of Rushcliffe belonged to the honour. Much of the remaining land in the vicinity of Nottingham was held by thanes. This pattern of estates is clearly related to Nottingham, and appears to betray a military function. The manor of Clifton in particular would seem to occupy a central position, for it dominates the southern approaches to the borough. It was in this estate that Edward the Elder had built a borough south of the Trent in 920.[107] Such characteristics might be seen as evidence of a Peverel castlery in Nottinghamshire, for it could be supposed that the king gave William Peverel a large tract  of  land,  irrespective  of  pre-Conquest predecessor, for the protection of the castle in Nottingham of which he was the constable. This interpretation of the structure of the honour is, however, implausible for, far from having a Norman character, his fee appears to have a predominantly pre-Conquest identity. Of the nineteen recorded tenants of manors other than those held in custody in 1086, eleven, representing at least eight individuals, have English or Anglo-Scandinavian names. By way of contrast, eight, representing four individuals, have continental names. Moreover, many of the Anglo-Saxon tenures seem to have survived until the time of Domesday. Wulfnoth held one bovate in Radford in thanage, while many of the others, where the relationship is expressed, are said to 'hold from' or 'have under' William.[108] Unlike those lands held in custody, William seems to have had full possession of the estate, and in the thirteenth century a large number of the fees were held in sergeancy.[109] The absence of specifically Norman forms, except in the fees held by continentals, is accompanied by evidence of a pre-Conquest unity in the estate. It has already been argued that the manors of Watnall and Bulwell formed an extended tenurial group.[110] The existence of an overlord is also suggested by the eight multiple-manor entries and the two examples of pre-Conquest holders who were tenants in 1086.[111] If a castlery can be discounted, then Countess Gytha is most likely to have been the predecessor who conferred title on William. The pre-Conquest holder of Clifton, she is apparently the only one in his breve who possessed sake and soke, toll and team, the datum of legal possession, and she gave title to much of the rest of his honour in Northamptonshire,  Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, and Bedfordshire.[112]

            Contrary to what one would expect in that case, however, the honour, did not meet in Clifton in the Middle Ages. From at least the twelfth century, the court was held in Nottingham.[113] But significantly it probably did not meet in the castle. It is recorded in an early four-tenth century assize roll that the king's court in the fee of Peverel used to be held in the chapel of St. James in Nottingham until it was enclosed in 1316 by the Carmelite Friars, and the king's bailiffs of the fee could no longer hold court there.[114] No earlier evidence than this has come to light. But the Peverel fee escheated to the crown in c.1154 and was farmed as a royal estate from that time.[115] It is difficult to understand in what circumstances its court could have been moved from a royal castle into a borough during that period. The association with St. James chapel, then, has every sign of being an ancient traditional meeting place. Moreover, it was not the only institution that met there, or in the vicinity. There is also evidence that the county court was also held in the same area.[116] The site of the chapel can be precisely identified. It stood close to the significantly named Moothallgate, the present Friar Lane, within the French borough.[117]

            As we have already seen,[118] this was part of the earl's estate before the Conquest. Although the fact is not stated in Domesday Book, it seems very likely that William Peverel held the estate as part of his honour, for the French Borough was very closely associated with the fee in the twelfth century. Thus, in the foundation charter of Lenton, William granted the monks the churches of St. Nicholas and St. Peter, apparently as part of his own fee. By way of contrast, he sought the consent of Henry I for the alienation of the church of St. Mary in the English borough.[119] This implies a more demesnal interest in the French Borough compared with the English. Moreover, local tradition claims that the whole of Nottingham fell within the jurisdiction of the Peverel court until 1316 when St, James' Chapel was appropriated by the Friars.[120] No mediaeval authority has been found for this statement, and, as it stands, it cannot be true. The English borough was royal, and had its own court from at least the time of its first charter granted in c.1155.[121] But part of the town may have paid suit to the honorial court. Contrary to the accepted opinion, it seems unlikely that the c.1155 charter refers to both the French and English boroughs. The construction of one defensive circuit around the two suggests that there was, in some respects, a single community by the middle of the twelfth century.[122] But it is clear from a charter granted to the burgesses of Nottingham by Earl John in c.1189 that Henry II's liberties only granted a single reeve: henceforward the burgesses were to elect this officer, although John had the right of veto.[123] However, from 1200 there is evidence for two  reeves and, by 1230, four, two for each of the boroughs.[124]  Some  degree of separation of administration is implied. Indeed, an assize of bread made in 1248 was confined to the English borough for it was witnessed by the bailiffs of that borough alone.[125] The French Borough evidently had its own assize. Such fragmentation of administration is unlikely to have developed if the one reeve of c.1155 and c.1189 had jurisdiction over both boroughs. As late as the 1280s, the French borough was separately farmed for in a pre-1284 charter a tenement on the west side of Bridlesmith Gate paid 3d to 'the farm of the king in the French Borough'.[126] It was not until 1284 that the two boroughs were united under one mayor.[127]

            If, then, the French Borough remained separate from the English Borough, it may well have paid suit to the Peverel court. Indeed. it was probably perquisites of this court that were escheated in the late twelfth century after Earl John forfeited Nottingham and the shire, along with the Peverel fee. In the 1194 Pipe Roll the sheriff accounted for 18 shillings and 7 pence rent (census) from 'very many houses in the vill of Nottingham', and 3 shillings from the toft of the moneyers and 2 shillings from their houses, under the heading of 'fines made for the knights and men of Earl John'. In subsequent years, the sums recorded were 23 shillings and 6 pence and 5 shillings, and are called 'purpresture and escheats'.[128] Census in this context probably implies landgable and/or farm, but the fee was evidently not part of the English Borough which was farmed by the burgesses. It is therefore probable that the escheated estate was located  within  the  French  Borough.  In  its essentials, the new borough was almost certainly a seigneurial institution within the honour of Peverel.

            In the light of the English characteristics of much of William Peverel's fee, its relationship with the the site of the French Borough, that is, the earl's estate, may also have had a pre-Conquest origin. Some connection there must have been, for it is inconceivable that Tosti could have controlled Nottingham without holding Clifton and the other estates of the fee. As early as the beginning of the tenth century, the need to control the southern approaches and the river had been recognised, for in 920 Edward the Elder built a borough to the south of the Trent.[129] Although there is no evidence that this structure survived into the eleventh century, West Bridgford, its most likely site, was situated within the manor of Clifton.[130] There is no reason to suppose that the strategic importance of the area was any less important in 1066.[131] Unfortunately, almost nothing is known about William's likely predecessor, Countess Gytha, the lady of the manor in 1066, and her place in the power structures in the county. She was the wife of Earl Ralf of Hereford, Edward the Confessor's nephew, and they had a son called Harold. After Ralf's death in 1056, the earldom was given to Harold Godwinson, but nothing is known about  Gytha's subsequent activities.[132] It is possible that she was in some way related to the house of Godwin, and therefore Tosti, for the two families shared the names Gytha and Harold. Such patterns are often characteristic of kinship groups. It is more likely,  though,  that  she benefited directly or indirectly, from the overthrow of Tosti in 1065 for she apparently held lands in Northamptonshire, Bedfordshire and Nottinghamshire, the earldoms of which had both been held by the earl, in the following year.[133] It is therefore possible that she also held Tosti's land in Nottingham in 1066 as the caput of her Nottinghamshire estates. The fact, of course, is apparently contested by Domesday Book. But information for the earl's carucate in Nottingham evidently came from a source drawn up before 1065 when he was deposed.[134] The datum for the account of Clifton, however, in common with the rest of the survey, was ostensibly 1066. The disparity in the Domesday Book, then, may merely reflect the use of different sources. Ultimately, however, it is not possible to penetrate the obscurity of the subject and period. Nevertheless, Domesday Book provides evidence of a remarkable concentration of lands of thanes around Nottingham in 1066. The pattern is unusual, although probably not unparalleled, and is evidently related to the town. There remains the possibility, then, though probably unproveable, that Tosti's estate was the centre of a pre-Conquest group of manors which was related to the defence of Nottingham which passed en bloc to William Peverel after the Conquest.

            Such, then, is the context in which the French borough was founded. Far from being a new settlement, it was a re-organisation of a royal or comital estate which was situated adjacent to, but administratively separate from, the pre-Conquest borough. Despite considerable uncertainty about the function of this estate, as Earl Tosti's land,  it was evidently of some importance in the borough and the county. Some-thing of its form may have survived in the character of the French borough. The reorganisation was in many ways radical. If part of the estate, the appurtenant land in Lenton was appended to other manors, and the element in Nottingham was urbanised. The nineteen villeins in 1066 probably belonged to this estate rather than the borough, and are recorded because their land was subsequently absorbed in the new town.[135] Burgage tenure and French customs, such as primogeniture, were probably introduced at this time. The process is not unparalleled. At Stamford, part of the royal estate adjacent to the Anglo-Scandinavian borough was incorporated into the town when the castle was built on the site. The agricultural element of the estate, however, was appended to a royal manor in Ketton or Great Casterton to the west of the town.[136] Nevertheless, the French Borough was probably seigneurial rather than royal in character, or rapidly became so. Its role as the centre of the Peverel fee in the fourteenth century may reflect a pre-Conquest arrangement of estates which were organised through the earl's estate to defend the borough. The building of the castle on the rock and Standard Hill may, then, represent continuity of institution, if not of site, from the pre- to post-Conquest period. Something of the pre-Conquest layout of the estate may also have survived. Clearly the Saturday Market is not necessarily a function of the relationship between the two boroughs. As at Stamford, it may be an early topographical feature which owes as much to the presence of the extra-burghal estate as of the borough.[137] There may also be grounds  for  seeing  St.  Peter's  as  a market church. The parish of St. Nicholas more or less defines the area in which the streets fan out from the castle. This may be the original extent of the French borough. St. Peter's parish however is squeezed in between this area and the English borough. In the documented period it did not encompass the market, but its area may have been considerably infilled. Such speculations, however, can only be resolved by further archaeological research.

            In 1066, then, Nottingham was a complex settlement which was characterised by three distinctive features. First, royal authority within the borough was more pronounced than in most county towns. Second, there was a royal or comital estate adjacent to the borough but administratively distinct from it. Third, a large number of thanes settled within the vicinity appear to be related to the defence of the town and were probably organised through this estate. It is within this context that the fees recorded in the second section of the Domesday account must be examined. As has already been seen, many of these tenements probably belonged to rural estates and were certainly responsible for a degree of tenurial heterogeneity in the later Middle Ages. Elsewhere such fees were common before the Conquest, and were related to the specialised functions of the borough as a social, economic, and military centre. But in Nottingham there is no evidence that they were a pre-Conquest feature of the town for no TRE tenants are named in the Domesday account. An argument from silence is, of course, dangerous, but the absence of the information, coupled with the simplicity of the parochial structure in Nottingham, tends to suggest that the fees were a Norman innovation. Indeed, the record of domus equitum, houses of horsemen or knights, may imply that they are directly related to the garrisoning of the castle, and owe their existence to the reorganisation of Earl Tosti's estate.[138] This is not to say that the lords of the shire did not hold tenements in the borough before the Conquest. They almost certainly did. But they were probably not held with sake and soke and were thus not part of their manors but belonged to the borough and therefore appear in the first section of the account.[139] The existence of such liberties in the boroughs may betoken something more than a mere economic function for they carried with them the reciprocal duties of army service, repair of bridges, and the garrisoning of the fortresses.[140] Although the garrison theory as a general interpretation of the origins of boroughs has been discredited, nevertheless boroughs were still manned and bookland was burdened with the duty.[141] In Nottingham, however, the booking of land was a late development for defence was probably the direct responsibility of the earl and the thanes settled around the borough. There was, then, probably no need for non-customary tenements within the borough.

[1] R. W. Finn, An Introduction to Domesday Book, London 1963, 56-8; A. Ballard, The Domesday Boroughs, Oxford 1904, 56-9.

[2] See chapter 8.

[3] Notts. DB, B1-7.

[4] Notts. DB, B8-20.

[5] The process is best illustrated by the account of Portland, a carucated estate which was postscriptally enrolled in the survey of hidated Northamptonshire. See D. R. Roffe, C. M. Mahany, 'Stamford and the Norman Conquest', Lincolnshire History and Archaeology 21, (forthcoming 1986).

[6] See below.

[7] Notts. DB, 1,63.

[8] VCH Notts. i, 245; Abbrev. Plac., 209. In 1285 a jury declared that the vill of Sneinton was never called Notingtone, but always Sneinton. Notingtone, however, was part of the vill of Nottingham on that side towards Arnold (that is, on the north side of the town). Thus, Henry de Pierpoint's land (in Sneinton) was not in ancient demesne. Stenton, on the basis of the DB entry and the identity of the two names, believed that the jury was 'mistaken' (VCH Notts. i, 245). Indeed, it is clear that Sneinton is always called Notingtone or Snotingtone in twelfth and thirteenth-century sources (PNN, 174). However, the jury seems to have had a precise location in mind, and their description is not inconsistent with the site of the suburb of Whiston. It is possible, therefore, that the Notingtone of 1086 included this area of Nottingham as well as Sneinton.

[9] The reference is probably to Nottinghamshire rather than Nottingham alone.

[10] The meaning of the term, fossa, is not immediately comprehensible. 'Town ditch', 'causeway' (across the Trent flood plain), and 'Foss  Way' have all been proposed (VCH Notts. i, 239).

[11] MDB, 29 and passim.

[12] See chapter 3.

[13] The articles do not mention such items as TRW tenants and churches which regularly appear in the text, and therefore cannot be the complete set of questions put by the commissioners (D. R. Roffe, 'Domesday Book and the Local Historian', The Nottinghamshire Historian 37, 3-5)

[14] See chapter 2.

[15] S. Harvey, 'Domesday Book and Anglo-Norman Governance', TRHS 5th ser. 25, (1975), 178; R. W. Finn, The Liber Exoniensis, London 1964, 40, 145.

[16] County towns were not always so treated. As in Leicestershire (Leics. DB, 3,1), the urban properties of the tenants-in-chief are occasionally enrolled in their respective breves, rather than in the account of the borough proper.

[17] Notts. DB,  B2, 4, 14, 15.

[18] Notts. DB,  B1-7.

[19] Derbys. DB, B3; D. R. Roffe, The Derbyshire Domesday, Darley Dale 1986, 22-3, 30.

[20] Lincs. DB, 3-13; Yorks. DB, C; Hunts. DB, B.

[21] Notts. DB,  B1-3.

[22] Derbys. DB, B1.

[23] Lincs. DB, p9/2.

[24] Lincs. DB, p9/1; p11/9,11.

[25] J. Tait, The Mediaeval English Borough, Manchester 1936, 169.

[26] Notts. DB,  B7; Derbys. DB, B2.

[27] C. M. Mahany, D. R. Roffe, 'Stamford: the Development of an Anglo-Scandinavian Borough', Anglo-Norman Studies V: Proceedings of the Battle Conference 1982, ed. R. A. Brown, Woodbridge 1983, 200-1; Tait, Mediaeval English Borough, 86-97.

[28] Chapter 5.

[29] W. H. Stevenson, 'Land Tenures in Nottinghamshire', Old Notting-hamshire, 1st ser., ed. S. P. Briscoe, Nottingham 1881, 66-71; R. E. Magarry, The Law of Real Property, 3rd ed., London 1962, 16-17.

[30] In the borough of Stamford there were 77 messuages of sokemen who had their lands in demesne, and could seek their lords where they would (Lincs. DB, p9/4). Although distinguished from the holders of ordinary 'customary' tenements, these townsmen were clearly of a similar status to burgesses. In Derby the services of Burton Abbey's men in the early twelfth century were indistinguishable from those of its rural censarii (C. G. O. Bridgeman, 'The Burton Abbey Twelfth Century Surveys', Collections for a History of Staffordshire, Stafford 1916, 229-34.

[31] Notts. DB,  B7-17.

[32] Notts. DB,  B14-15.

[33] DB i, f.208a-b, 373a-374b, 375b-377d.

[34] Notts. DB, S6. 5,1; 4. 9,7-9. 24,1.

[35] Lincs. DB, p11/8-16.

[36] Derbys. DB, B5-14.

[37] Hunts. DB, B6-8, 11. See also Lincs. DB, p5/18.

[38] Mahany and Roffe, 'Stamford', 201.

[39] Derbys. DB, B4, 9-12, 14; Hunts. DB, B2-5; Lincs. DB, p3/5-8; p5/10; Notts. DB,  B14.

[40] Hunts. DB, B5.

[41] Lincs. DB, p5/9.

[42] Notts. DB,  B4.

[43] Notts. DB,  B14-15.

[44] Lincs. DB, p11/6; D. R. Roffe, 'Rural Manors and Stamford', South Lincolnshire Archaeology i, Stamford 1977, 12, 13.

[45] Cal. Doc. France, no. 530.

[46] BF, 196.

[47] CCR 1242-1247, 471.

[48] RH i, 351, 357.

[49] Cal. Gen., 350; CI ii, 547.

[50] RH i, 351. The lord was entitled to his own 'manorial' court, but was still obliged to pay suit to the 'public' court of the borough for the regulation of tithings. The borough court was equivalent to a wapentake court, and, like its rural counterpart, no one was exempt from its jurisdiction (D. R. Roffe, C. M. Mahany, 'Stamford and the Norman Conquest', Lincolnshire History and Archaeology, forthcoming 1986).

[51] RNB i, 2, 3.

[52] VCH Notts. i, 245.

[53] BF, 288.

[54] CRR xii, 124.

[55] CPR 1258-1266, 29; IAQD, 94.

[56] Rufford Charters, ed. C. J. Holdsworth, TSRS 29, no. 33; CPR 1301-1307, 487.

[57] Nottinghamshire Record Office, CA 1295, Nottingham Borough Court Enrolments, f. 2v. I would like to thank S. N. Mastoris, Brewhouse Yard Museum, Nottingham, for drawing my attention to this reference, and suggesting the possible location of the tenement.

[58] CPR 1334-1338, 437; 1339-1340, 258; 1343-1345, 250-1; QW, 617; IAQD, 365; CCR 1377-1381, 287.

[59] RNB i, 201.

[60]  Above.

[61] Notts. DB,  B16.

[62] Abstracts of the Inquisitions Post Mortem relating to Nottinghamshire ii, ed. J. Standish, TSRS 4, (1914), 85.

[63] College of Arms, London, Arundel 60, Newstead Cartulary, f.82r no. 1. I would like to thank S. N. Mastoris for drawing my attention to this reference.

[64] Notts. DB,  B13.

[65] See, for example, Lincs. DB, p9/1-p11/17; Mahany, Roffe, 'Stamford', 200-1.

[66] Chester DB, C25.

[67] Leics.DB, 3,1-3; Lincs. DB, p11/9.

[68] See chapter 5.

[69] Notts. DB,  B15.

[70] S. N. Mastoris, 'The Boundary between the English and French Boroughs of Mediaeval Nottingham', TTS 81, (1981), 68.

[71] Mastoris, 'Boundary', 68-74.

[72] F. Barlow, The English Church 1000-1066, London 1979, 194-6.

[73]  Above.

[74] Notts. DB,  B4, 14, 15.

[75] Mon. Ang. v, 111-2; J. T. Godfrey, The History of the Parish and Priory of Lenton in the County of Nottinghamshire, Derby 1884, 63-5.

[76] CPR 1258-1266, 593; 1266-1272, 100.

[77] Notts. DB,  B7.

[78] This work is currently being undertaken by the Nottingham Deeds Survey, Nottingham Museums, Brewhouse Yard, Nottingham.

[79] W. Stevenson, A. Stapleton, The Religious Institutions of Old Nottingham i, Nottingham 1895, 12-25.

[80] Stevenson and Stapleton, Religious Institutions, 22.

[81] BL Loans 29/60, Cartulary of Sir Henry Pierpoint, 51v.

[82] ASE, 149-50. Existing daughter churches were also removed from the parochie of minsters when estates were booked and thereby became eigenkirchen (P. H. Sawyer, From Roman Britain to Norman England, London 1978, 245).

[83] Derbys. DB, B1, 5-8; Roffe, Derbyshire Domesday, 23.

[84] J. S. Hartley, A. Rogers, The Religious Foundations of Mediaeval Stamford, Nottingham 1974; J. F. W. Hill, Medieval Lincoln, Cambridge 1948, 147.

[85] St. Michael's Church in Whiston, the northern suburb of Nottingham, is a somewhat shadowy institution. But in 1341 it was described as a chapel of St. Mary, and was thus almost certainly in origin a dependent foundation within the parochia of the mother church (NI, 290; Stevenson and Stapleton, Religious Institutions ii, 133).

[86] A note appended to the description of the borough of Derby may imply such restrictions. Stori, Walter of Aincurt's predecessor, could make himself a church on his land and in his soke without anyone's permission, and dispose of his tithe where he would (Derbys. DB, B16). This passage seems to imply that this was an unusual liberty. However, since Stori is not said to have had sake and soke, toll and team (Notts. DB, S5), it may merely attest to the fact that he did not have the relevant liberties.

[87] See below and chapter 10.

[88] C. S. B. Young, 'Archaeology in Nottingham: the Pre-Conquest Borough', History in the Making 1985, eds S. N. Mastoris, S. M. Groves, Nottingham 1986, 1-3. I am indebted to Charles Young for comments on the significance  and  interpretation  of  the  archaeological  evidence  in advance of detailed publication.

[89] Roffe, Derbyshire Domesday, 22-5; R. Bailey, The Early Christian Church in Leicester and its Region, Leicester 1980, 10-11; Hill, Medieval Lincoln, 64-81. As in Derby, there may have been two minsters in Lincoln. St. Mary's in the Bail was probably in existence from at least the mid tenth century, while the production of  St. Martin's pennies in the 920s suggests that the church of St. Martin in the Lower City was a foundation of similar, if not greater, status at about the same period. By way of contrast, the mother church of Stamford was a daughter of the royal church of Hambleton in Roteland (Lincs. DB, p11/13; Mahany, Roffe, 'Stamford', 201-2).

[90] Pace the Phillimore reading of the 'priests' croft' attached to the king's church. The MS quite clearly has 'crofta presbitri', that is 'croft of the priest'.

[91] The process can be directly observed in the endowment of the Arrouaisian foundation of Bourne in Lincolnshire, which appears to have been the regularisation of a pre-Conquest collegiate establishment (D. R. Roffe, 'The Abbey of Bourne', forthcoming).

[92] A. Rogers, 'Parish Boundaries and Urban History: Two Case Stud-ies', Journal of the British Archaeological Association, 3rd ser,. 35, (1972), 51-3.

[93] ASC, 148; W. E. Kapelle, The Norman Conquest of the North, London 1979, 109-111.

[94] S. Reynolds, English Medieval Towns, Oxford 1977, 43.

[95] Notts. DB, B3.

[96]  Above.

[97] Notts. DB, B2.

[98] See chapter 10.

[99] Notts. DB, 10,18n.

[100] See chapter 10.

[101] Notts. DB, 10,23; 32; 48.

[102] Notts. DB, 10,23; 52. 30,28.

[103] Notts. DB, 10,6; 38. 30,25; 55.

[104] Derbys. DB, 1,29; 32; 35-6. It is likely that William held all of the king's land in the High Peak, for the royal estates in the north of Derbyshire are enrolled in a separate section of the text (D. R. Roffe, 'Introduction', Domesday Book: Derbyshire, ed. A. Williams, forthcoming 1987). The lands of many of the king's thanes in the area were sub-sequently held of the honour of Peverel.

[105] F. E. Harmer, Anglo-Saxon Writs, Manchester 1952, no. 119.

[106] Notts. DB, 12,16; 17.

[107] See chapter 10.

[108] Notts. DB, 10,15. See chapter 4.

[109] See, for example, BF, 8, 1000.

[110] See chapter 4.

[111] Notts. DB, 10,43; 46; 55.

[112] Notts. DB, S5; Northants DB, no. 35; Berks DB, no. 24; Bucks DB, no. 16; Beds DB, no. 22.

[113] The Red Book of the Exchequer, ed. H. Hall, London 1896, 82.

[114] Stevenson, Stapleton, Religious Institutions, 43.

[115] PR 2 Henry II, 40.

[116] D. Crook, 'Moothallgate and the Venue of the Nottinghamshire County Court in the Thirteenth Century', TTS  88, (1984), 99-102.

[117] Stevenson, Stapleton, 'Religious Institutions', 50.

[118]  Above.

[119] Mon. Ang. v, 111-2; Godfrey, Lenton, 63.

[120] Stevenson, Stapleton, 'Religious Institutions', 50-60.

[121] RNB i, 2, 3.

[122] M. W. Barley, J. F. Straw, 'Nottingham', Historic Towns: Maps and Plans of Towns and Cities in the British Isles with Historical Commentaries from Earliest Times to 1800 i, ed. M. D. Lobel, London 1969.

[123] RNB i, 7-11.

[124] S. N. Mastoris, 'The Reeves and Bailiffs of the Town of Nottingham before 1284', TTS 87, (1983), 36-9.

[125] BL Add. MS 35179, f.90v. I would like to thank S. N. Mastoris for drawing my attention to this important document.

[126] RNB i, 367. For the date of this charter, see Mastoris, 'Reeves', 38.

[127] RNB i, 57-9.

[128] PR 1194, 84; 1195, 17; 1196, 267; 1197, 144 etc.

[129] ASC, 67.

[130] Barley,  Straw,  'Nottingham',  3.  Mickleborough Hill has been suggested as the site (VCH Notts. i, 291n).

[131] See chapter 10.

[132] Notts. DB, 10,5n.

[133] Northants DB, no. 35; Berks DB, no. 24; see chapter 10.

[134] See above. Tosti is also recorded as having held two estate which appear in the terra regis in 1086. As we have seen (chapter 2), the Domesday account of the king's lands is apparently derived from sources other than those of the bulk of the text.

[135] Notts. DB, B1.

[136] Mahany, Roffe, 'Stamford', 216-7.

[137] Mahany, Roffe, 'Stamford', 216-7.

[138] Notts. DB, B9, 10.

[139] Unfortunately, it has not proved possible to identify the location of all the fees, and it is therefore impossible to determine whether they were located in the French Borough. Part of the Sandiacre fee in Derbyshire was located in Derby itself in the late eleventh century, but is not identified in Domesday because it paid all customs (Roffe, 'Introduction', Derbyshire Domesday).

[140] R. Abels, 'Bookland and Fyrd Service in Late Saxon England', Anglo-Norman Studies VII: Proceedings of the Battle Conference 1884, ed. R. A. Brown, Woodbridge 1985, 1-15.

[141] F. W. Maitland, Township and Borough, Cambridge 1898, 44, 210; Tait, Mediaeval English Borough, 26-7.