Michael Linton's Bayeux Tapestry: 1066 - A Medieval Mosaic and Puzzles
BATTLE ABBEY ROLL.
ACCOUNT OF THE NORMAN LINEAGES.
IN THREE VOLUMES.—VOL. I
JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET.
PRINTED BY WILLIAM CLOWES AND SONS, LIMITED,
STAMFORD STREET AND CHARING CROSS.
This electronic edition
was prepared by
Michael A. Linton, 2007
or Bosevile (Leland). "The Bosviles probably derived their name from Boschevile, a town between Pont Audemer and Honfleur, now famous for its market and fair. A William de Boseville is a witness to a charter of Humphrey de Bohun in 1125. Michael, son of William de Boseville, was a benefactor to Warden Abbey, Beds, and is spoken of by Geoffrey, Comes de Maundevyle, as his knight, in the same chartulary. Again, a Richard and Ralph de Boseville were early benefactors to the house of De la Pre, near Northampton; and in support of the presumption that this Ralph was of the same family as the Bosvilles of Yorkshire, it is observed that the device upon his seal was an ox issuing from a holt of trees, a badge used afterwards by the Yorkshire family.
"Elias de Boseville, who flourished before the year 1159, when Henry II. confirmed his donation to Nostell Priory, was probably the ancestor of the latter. He appears to have been a person much connected with the Newmarches, to which connection the Bosviles owed the five fusils in fesse they bore on their shield, afterwards distinguished by three bears' heads, or some other figure in chief. Sir John Bosvile, living 1252 and '54, married the heiress of Darfield. They were afterwards seated at Ardsley and Newhall, Chevet, and Peniston-Coningsburgh, Warmsworth, Braithwell, and Ravenfield, Yorkshire, and Belhouse Grange, Notts. Their vast possessions must have placed them in the very first rank of the gentry of the North. Robert Bosvile was Constable of Pontefract in 1333. Thomas Bosvile, the last male, who died in 1639, desired in his will that he might be buried among his ancestors in the quire of the parish church of Darfield."—Hunter's South Yorkshire. At the east end of the south choir one of their monuments, with effigies of a knight and lady of the time of Richard II.—the knight wearing the collar of SS as a Lancastrian badge—is still to be seen.
The name did not perish with this Thomas, but continued to be represented by various junior branches; and one of them, that had been seated at Gunthwaite, in the same county, from the time of Henry VI., survived till 1813. The first Boseville there was Richard, who died in 1501, and had Gunthwaite and other lands by gift of his mother; but he and his two immediate successors chiefly resided at Beighton, in Derbyshire, where they were farmers of the estate of Lord Dacre of the South. In the following generation, Ralph, a younger brother of Godfrey (the first of that name of the family), acquired a large fortune as clerk of the Court of Wards, and "bought Bradbourne, near Seven Oaks and Eynsford in Kent, where the descendants of his two sons, Henry and Sir Robert, were among the principal gentry of the county as long as they continued." Another Bosville, the heir of Gunthwaite, "was a captain in Ireland, and there either slain or lost in a bog." His son, Godfrey, married Margaret Greville, a cousin of Lord Brooke, settled among his wife's kin, at Wroxall, in Warwickshire, and adopted their politics. He represented Warwick in the Long Parliament, held the rank of a colonel in the Roundhead army, and was present at the defence of Warwick Castle and the taking of Coventry in 1642. The last heirs-male were the two sons of another Godfrey Bosville (obt. 1784), and both of them soldiers; one was slain in Flanders, and the other died s. p. in 1813, leaving two sisters, married to Lord Macdonald and Viscount Dudley. The elder, Elizabeth Lady Macdonald, inherited the property, and her son Godfrey added the name of Bosville to his own.
At Rossington, a few miles from Doncaster, lies buried Charles Bosvile, one of this family, "still remembered in the traditions of the village as having established a species of sovereignty among the gypsies, who, before the enclosures, used to frequent the moors about Rossington. His word amongst them was law; and his authority so great, that he perfectly restrained the pilfering propensities for which the tribe is censured, and gained the entire good will for himself and his people of the farmers and the people around. No gipsy for many years passed near Rossington without going to pay respect at the grave of him whom they called their king; and I am informed that even now, if the question were asked of any of the people who still haunt the lanes in this neighbourhood, especially about the time of Doncaster races, they would answer that they were Bosvile's people..... He was a gentleman with an estate of about 200 a year, and is described by De la Pryme, of Hatfield, as 'a mad spark, mighty fine and brisk, and keeps company with a great many gentlemen, knights, and esquires, and yet runs about the country.'"—Hunter's South Yorkshire. He was the predecessor of Bamfylde Moore Carew, who several years later, adopted a similar mode of life. The headstone on his grave had disappeared even before Hunter's time; but it continued for a number of years to be a place of pilgrimage for the gipsy tribes, who used to visit it once a year, and:here perform some of their accustomed rites. One of these (a curious survival of the old heathen libations) consisted in pouring a flagon of ale upon the grave.
I have met with the name in several other counties. "In 1180, 100s. rent in Higham and Wykin were given by Robert Bloet, in fee simple, to Guarinus de Busa. Villa."—Nichols Leicestershire. In Norfolk, Boseville's Manor (or Hedeston), was named from Walkelin de Boseville, who acquired it in 1199 by his wife, Agatha de Hedeston. It continued for nearly two hundred years in the name, for the last possessor, Adam de Boseville, died in 1363.
- ↑ Or, according to another authority, from Boseville, near Caudebec.
- ↑ More than a hundred years before this, Bosvile or Boswell was a favourite name among the gipsies, who have always been fond of appropriating aristocratic surnames, such as Stanley, Lovell, Lee, Ingram, Lovet, &c.