A.D. 1043 x 1045. Will of Thurstan, son of Wine, including bequests of land at Wimbish, Essex, to Christ Church, Canterbury; at Harlow, Essex (except the half hide at Ealing Bridge in Harlow which Ælfwine had), and Shouldham, Norfolk, to Bury St Edmunds; land at Wetheringsett, Suffolk, and at Knapwell, Cambs., to Ely abbey; land at Weston Colville, Cambs., to Æthelswith, for life, with reversion to Ely; land at Shouldham, Norfolk, to Ramsey and St Benedict's at Holme; land at Borough Green, Cambs., to Ulfketel, if he outlives Thurstan, except a half hide at Westley Waterless and 1 hide at Dullingham (granted to Thurstan's servant, Viking); land in Norfolk and at Pentlow, Ashdon and Henham, Essex, to his wife Æthelgyth (except land at Bromleg [possibly Bromley Barn in Widdington] and half a hide at Henham, to go to the local minsters); land at Kedington, Suffolk, to the priest Ælfwig and Thurstan's chaplains Thurstan and Ordheah; land at Little Dunmow, Essex, to Merewine and his family; and instructions that land at Bidicheseye (? Bottisham, Cambs.) was to be sold and payments made to a number of beneficiaries. With an additional section detailing further bequests, including the reversion of land at Henham, Essex, to Æthelswith and then to Ely abbey; a half hide at Ongar, Essex, to Thurgot, his servant; a half hide and a haga near Marden Ash in High Ongar, Essex, to Merewine; and a half hide to Swegn. English


Bury St Edmunds


1. Cambridge, University Library, Ff.2.33, f. 49r-v (s. xiii 2)
2. London, British Library, Add. 14847, f. 19r (s. xiii/xiv; part only)


Douglas and Greenaway, EHD II, no. 184 (pp. 901-2)

Printed and Translated:

Thorpe, pp. 571-6; Whitelock, Wills, no. 31 (pp. 81-5)


Whitelock, Wills, pp. 192-7; Fisher 1936; Hart, ECEE, no. 72 (pp. 50-1, 70, 85), authentic; Whitelock 1969, p. 112, no good reason to identify Bidicheseye with Bottisham; Hart, ECE, no. 59, authentic; Finberg 1972, p. 498, cited; HRH, p. 236, genuine; Fleming 1993, p. 121; Kennedy 1995, p. 167 n. 143; Pelteret 1995, pp. 123, 130; Foot 2000, II. 30

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    • In our Lord's name. I, Thurstan, Wine's son, make known to all men how I grant the things which God has lent to me for as long as it shall be his will. That is, that I grant the estate at Wimbish to Christchurch, for my soul and Leofwaru's and Æthelgyth's, after my day and after Æthelgyth's; the men are to be free, and twelve pounds by tale is to be paid by Christchurch to St Augustine's. And I grant to St Edmund's the estate at Harlow, except the half hide which Ælfwine had at Ealing Bridge, and except the homestead which Ælfgar occupies and the spur of land which belongs to it; and all the men are to be free. And I grant the estate at the north hall at Shouldham to St Edmund's after the death of both of us; and the men are to be free. And I grant to Ely the estate at Wetheringsett, except the land that Æthelric has. He is to hold that freely for his life and his wife's, and after the death of them both, it is to go to the village church and the men are to be free. And I grant the estate at Knapwell to Ely, except the land which Ordheah and the monk Æthelric hold; and the men are to be free. And I grant the estate at Knapwell to Ely, except the land which Ordheah and the monk Æthelric hold; and the men are to be free. And I grant the estate at Weston to Æthelswith, and after her death to Ely, except the land which Sæwine holds in return for service, which is to go to the village church; and the men are to be free. And I grant half the estate at the middle hall at Shouldham to St Benedict's at Ramsey, and half to St Benedict's at Holme, as it belongs there after the death of both of us; and the men are to be free. And I grant to my royal lord as heriot two marks of gold and two horses with trappings, and a helmet and a coat of mail and a sword and two shields and two spears. And I desire that the estate at Bidicheseye shall be sold, and that two marks of gold shall be taken from that estate for the King's heriot; and Earl Harold [is to receive] half a mark of gold, and Bishop Stigand half a mark of gold, and my partner one mark of gold; and one mark of gold [is to be given] to his child, Thorth's brother, and one mark of god to Sendi Arfast. And what is left over, the heirs are to distribute it for the sake of his soul in his partner's witness, except that the outermost mill is to go to St Æthelburg's at Barking. And it is my wish that Ulfketel's and my partnership shall hold good, on the terms to which we have agreed; namely, the estate at Borough [is to go] to whichever of us shall live the longer - except half a hide at Westley and a hide at Dullingham which I grant to my servant Viking - and Ulfketel has laid down on his side four marks. And I grant to my wife Æthelgyth everything which I have in Norfolk, as I gave it to her before as a marriage payment and in accordance with our contract; and the estate at Pentlow and at Ashdon, except the land at Bromley which is to go to the village church after the death of us both. And I grant to Æthelgyth th estate at Henham, except half a hide which is to go to the church. And I grant to the priest Ælfwig and to my chaplain Thurstan and to my chaplain Ordheah that they shall have the estate at Kedington after our death. And I grant to Merewine and his wife and their children the estate at Dunmow except half a hide which is to go to the church, and a homestead. And to my serivants I grant the wood at Ongar, except the deer-enclosure and the stud which I have there. These are the witnesses in Norfolk: Earl Harold, and Bishop Stigand, and Osgot Clapa, and Godwine and Wulfgeat and Edwin and Osbeorn and Ulf and Gouti; and in Suffolk: Leofstan the dean and all the community of Bury St Edmunds and Eadric and Ælfric and Ulfketel and Leofmær; and in Cambridgeshire: Abbot Leofsige and all the community at Ely, and Abbot Ælfwine and all the community at Ramsey, and Ælfwine and Ulfketel Cild, and Osgot Swegn and Ordgar and the other Ordgar; and in Essex: Ælfgar the Earl's son, and Leofcild and Osulf Fila and Wulfwine and Sendi and Leofric the seneschal. He who wishes to alter this will, unless it be I myself, may God destroy him now and on the Day of Judgment. Amen. There are three of these documents: one shall go to St Edmund's, and one to Ely, and one shall be in my own household. And Thurstan and Æthelgyth and Askil grant to Æthelswith the estate at Henham after their death; and after her death the estate is to go to St Etheldreda's for her own soul and for Thurstan's and for Æthelgyth's, and for Leofwaru's and for Askil's, except the two hides which Æthelmær Parl has, and except the one hide which Wulfmær had, and one yardland which Lustwine had. And I grant to Thurgot my servant a half-hide which Ælfstan occupies at Ongar, and to Merewine a half-hide and the little enclosure near Meredene, and to Swegn half a hide; and they may obtain what is left over by agreement with us both, if we are willing to allow them.
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    • [O]n vre drichtines name ic ˝urstan Wine sune kithe alle manne ihu ic an ˇe ˇing ˇe me god haue∂ lent so longe so his wille beth. ˇat is ˇat ic an ˇat lond at Wimbisc into Cristes kirke for mine soule 7 for Lefwares and for Egelsithes after mine day. 7 after Egelsithes; ˇo men fre. and leste man of Cristes kirke .XII. pund be tale. into seynt Augustine. And ic an ˇat lond at Herlawe into sancte Eadmunde buten ˇe halue hide ˇe Alfwine hauede at Gildenebrigge. and buten ˇat tuft ˇe Alfgor on sit and ˇat hoo. ˇerto. and alle ˇe men fre. And ic an ˇat lond at Sculham at ˇe Northhalle into seynt Eadmunde after vnker bothre day. and ˇo men fre. And ic an ˇat lond at Wetheringsete into Ely buten ˇat lond ˇat Aylri haue∂ habbe he ˇat fre his day and his wiues. and after here bothere day into ˇe tunkirke. 7 ˇo men fre. and Ic an ˇat lond at Cnapwelle into Ely buten ˇat lond ˇat Ordeh haue∂ 7 Aylric munek haue∂ and ˇo men fre. And ic an ˇat lond at Westone Agilswi∂e buten ˇat lond ˇat Sewine haue∂ to earninge ˇat schal into tunkirke and after hire day into Ely. 7 ˇo men fre. And ic an ˇat lond at Sculham at ˇe Middelhalle half into sancte Benedicte to Rameseye. 7 half into sancte Benedicte into Holm. so it ˇerto lith after vnker bother day and ˇo men fre. And ic an mine kinelouerd for mine Hergete to marc goldes and to hors. and sadelfate and Helm and brinie and Suerd and to scheldes and to speren. And ic wille ˇat men selle ˇat lond at Bidicheseye. and nime of ˇat lond to marc goldes to ˇe kinges heregete. and half marc goldes ˇe erl Harold. and half marc goldes Stigand bisscop. 7 an marc goldes mine felage. And an marc goldes his berne. ˝orˇes brother 7 an marc goldes Sendi Arfast and ˇat ˇe ˇer ouer go∂; delen le eruene men for his soule on his felawes witnesse, buten ˇat vttreste Milne into sancte Aethelburg at Berkynge. And wille ˇat min and Vlfkeles felageschipe stonde to ˇat forwarde ˇe wit speken habben. ˇat is ˇat lond at Burg. and Vlfketel haui∂ leyd ˇerwith four marc goldes so wether so leng libbe. buten half hide at Westle 7 an hide at Dullingham ˇat ic an Wiking mine knihte. and ic an mine wife Ailgi∂e al ˇe ˇing ˇe ic haue on Norfolke so ic it her hire gaf to mund and to maldage. And ˇat lond at Pentelawe 7 at Aesredune buten ˇat lond at Bromlege ˇat schal into ˇe tunkirke. ouer vnker bother day. and ic an Agilgi∂ ˇat lond at Henham buten an half hide ˇat schal into 'ˇe' kirke. and ic an Alfwi prest and ˝urstan mine hirdprest. and Ordeh mine hirdprest ˇat he habben ˇat lond at Kydingtone after vnker bother day. And ic an Meruyn and his wife and here bern ˇat lond at Dunmawe. butan an alf hide ˇat schal into ˇe kirke and an tuft. 7 ic an mine cnihtes ˇat wude at Aungre buten ˇat derhage. 7 ˇat stod ˇe ic ˇer habbe. ˇis is to witnesse innon Norfolke. Harold erl. and Stigand Bisscop. and Osgote. Clape. and Godwine. 7 Wlgeat. 7 Eadwine. and Osbern. and Vlf. and Gouti. And innon Suffolke Lefstan Decan and al se hird on seynt Eadmundes biri. 7 Eadric and Alfric 7 Vlfketel. and Lemmer. And in Grauntebreggeschire. Leswi abbot 7 al se hird bynnen Ely. and Aelfwine Abbot 7 al se hird into Rameseye and Alfwine and Vlfketel Kild. and Osgot Sveyn and Ordger and oˇer Ordger. And innen Essexe. Alfger ˇe Erles sune. and Lefkild 7 Osulf File. and Wlwine. and Sendi. and Leuerich discˇeng. Se ˇe ˇis quide awenden wille. buten ic self it be; god him fordo nu and on domisday. AmeN. ˇise write sinden ˇre. on schal into seynt Eadmunde. Aand on into Ely. and on schal ben innon min owen hird. And ˇat lond at Henham ˝urstan and Agelgi∂. and Askil vnnen Aegelswide after here aldreday. and after hire day; go ˇat lond into sancte Aetheldrith for hire owen soule. and for ˝urstanes and for Agilwi∂. 7 for Lefware and for Askilles boten ˇo tueye hidan ˇe Aylmer Parl haue∂. and buten ˇat on hide ˇe Wlmare hauede. 7 an girde ˇe Lustwine hauede. And ic an ˝urgot mine cnihte half hide ˇe Aelstan on sit at Aungre. 7 Meruin half hide. and ˇane litle hege with Meredene. And Sueyn half hide. and ˇat ouer beth; ofgon he it on vnker gemede. gif wit aleten willen.