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Fay Sampson’s Family History

This site is a work-in-progress. There is a massive amount to cover. I have included both male and female lines, and some go back 30 generations. Keep coming back for more.
I have numbered the generations working backwards from my own as (1)




THOMAS DENEBAUD was the son of William Denebaud, of Hinton St George in Somerset, and Joan Stocklinch.

William was still alive in 1317, but by 1334 had been succeeded by Thomas. We know this because at his death in 1334 Henry le Guldene held some 50 a. of land at Hentonscraft, in the parish of Hinton St George, most of it as tenant of Thomas Denebaud. [1]

By the mid 14th century, when the holding of Hinton was divided between the Carents and the Denebauds, there was a three-field pattern of open-field agriculture, comprising North, West, and South fields, meadow land in the north of the parish, and pasture and woodland in the south. A survey of the Denebaud estate in 1362, following Thomas’s death, reveals a similar general pattern. There were 180 a. of arable, of which two-thirds were sown each year; 20 a. of grassland and in severalty for hay and thereafter in common, common of pasture worth 12 s. and some additional pasturage, together with a little wood. The manor complex is not described, but there were 2 dovecots, and 2 gardens were worth little in that year because the apple trees had been blown down. A much greater manor complex was described in 1387.

A William Warre had a small holding on the Carent estate, and a possible successor, John Warre, died in 1349 in occupation of land including 4 virgates of Thomas Denebaud, later described as 76 a. of arable and 3 a. of meadow and pasture.

There was a mill on the Denebaud estate, worth 30s in 1362.[2]

Thomas came to possess the property of Holbrook Grindham, which is either the same as, or close to, Denbow Farm in the East Devon parish of Farringdon, It had formerly been the property of Philip Denebaud, cousin of Thomas’s father William, having been brought to Philip by his wife Cicely Grindham.[3]

The Transactions of the Devonshire Association tells us: –

(1192) William de Grindeham holds 1/2 Mortain fee (????) in Holbrook (Holbrook Grindham) alias Withien Furze, (Trans. XXXII.p.409) in Aylesbeare, alias Holbrook More in Feudal Aids 365, 427, of Walter de Esselegh and Walter of our lord the King in chief.

In Domesday, Colebroca. , 252 acres,. . . . . . held in 1303 by William de Gryndham (Feudal Aids 365); in 1346 by Thomas Denebaut; in 1428 by John Dennabawd,.[4]

Feudal Aids 1346 gives the landowners in the Hundred of South Petherton in Somerset as follows:

De Thomas Denebaud et Philipus Denebaud

The Denbow Diaspora says that Thomas was not only a knight, but, like his father, an attorney and tax collector.[5]


JOAN BRENT was the daughter of Robert de Brent and Claricia de la Ford of Cossington in Somerset.[6]

The Brents took their name from the Somerset villages of South and East Brent. The prominent hill of Brent Knoll stands above the modern Sedgemoor service station. The Brents had long-standing connections with Glastonbury Abbey.

It was in Joan’s time that the surname changed from ‘de Brent’ to simply ‘Brent’.[7]

Thomas Denebaud married Joan Brent, probably in the 1340s. Joan’s brother Robert married Thomas’s sister Elizabeth.


Thomas took over the advowson of churches which his mother Joan Stocklinch had brought to her marriage with William Denebaud.


  1. xvij Kal., May, year above, at Wyvelscomb. The lord instituted William Touke, chaplain, to the chantry in the church of Stoke Lynche Ostrizer to which he was presented by Thomas Denebaud, lord of Stoclynche Ostrizer.
  2. ix Kal, May, A.D. above, at Wyvelscomb. The lord instituted Edmund Barlich, priest, to the perpetual chantry in the church of Stokelynche Ostrizer, at the presentation of  Thomas Denebaud.[8]

The name of Stokelynche Ostrizer carries the memory that Thomas’s mother, Joan Stocklinch, was descended from the Ostricers, who were once the king’s hawkers.[9] 

Stocklinch Ottersey church

One of Thomas’s contemporaries, probably a cousin, was a nun at Polsloe Priory, on the outskirts of Exeter. Also known as St Katherine’s, it is situated near the present Polsloe Railway Bridge, north of Whipton Road. It was probably founded in the 12th century.

In 1326, Walter Stapeldon, Bishop of Exeter and Treasurer to Edward II, was murdered in London during an uprising against the king. In 1331,  the “Accounts of the Executors of Bishop Stapledon’s Will” records:- delivered by Dom Denebaud, Nun of Polsloe, Kinswoman of the Lord Bishop, 1/2 mark.

She appears again in 1347. That year, there was an election of a new Prioress. There were then 19 nuns in the monastery. The names of electing nuns are given, and the ninth name on the list is Anastasia Deneband. Anastasia may be a name given to her on her profession.[10]

Her relationship to the dead bishop may mean that Anastasia was descended from Thomas’s great-uncle William Denebaud, who married Alice Hereward, a niece of Bishop Stapeldon.


Thomas and Joan had a son, John, born in 1350.[11]


Joan’s father died the following year. He was buried in the choir of the church at Glastonbury Abbey, to which he had been a major benefactor.


Thomas died on 1 Jan 1360, leaving as his heir his son John, a minor aged 12.

Thomas Denebaud held a watermill, a fulling-mill and a carucate of land of the same inheritance by knight’s service, and died seised thereof on Saturday the feast of the Circumcision, 33 Edward III;  after whose death they descended to John his son and heir, then aged 12 years and 12 weeks.[12]

This comes from the IPM of Thomas’s  cousin, William Kayle.


Other Denebauds mentioned around this time may be brothers, sons, cousins, or more distant relatives. They include Matthew Denebaud (1363); Philip Denebaud (1366); another Thomas Denebaud, clerk (1378) and John Denebaud, tailor, of Dartmouth (1394).[13]


Joan is thought to have died in 1388.[14] If so, then she lived to see her son come of age and start a family of his own.


[1] R.W. Dunning (ed), A History of the County of Somerset. Vol. 4. OUP, 1978. www.british-history,ac.uk
[2] Dunning
[3] Trans. of the Devon Assoc., XXXV
[4] Full Text of “The Devonshire Association for the Advancement of Science, Literature. www.archive.org
[5] The Denbow Diaspora, Vol. 11. No. 2. www.denbow.org
[6] www.noffsinger.org/genealogy/aqpages/aqwg79.htm
[7] Brent Family Tree.  users.comlab.ox.ac.uk/richard.brent/family2.html
[8] The Register of Ralph of Shrewsbury, Bishop of Bath and Wells, 1329-1363.     www.archive.org
[9] Bush, Robin, Somerset, The Complete Guide. www.stocklinch.org.uk
[10] The Denbow Diaspora. Vol. 7, No. 1.
[11] Dunning
[12] Calendar of Inquisitions, Edward III (publ. 1913). #18.  William Cayle, or Caille, or Keil or Keyle. Codworth(?) www.callawayfamily.org/…/Public%20Record%20Office%202003.doc
[13] The Denbow Diaspora, Vol. 11, No. 2.
[14] www.geni.com




Sampson Tree