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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)




HENRY FRAUNCEIS was the son of John Fraunceis of Killerton  in Broadclyst, 6 miles NE of Exeter.[1] The family home was Frances Court. This is now a farm just south of Killerton House.

We do not know his mother’s name or his date of birth, but it is likely to have been in the late 13th or early 14th century.

Since his father was the younger son, Henry would not have expected to inherit the family estate. But his uncle Sir Henry Fraunceis died childless. By then, John Fraunceis must have been dead, because  the younger Henry became his uncle’s heir.


Like his uncle, Henry was knighted.

Early in the 14th century more of king’s business was devolved to knights. As representatives of the shires, they answered to the justices. Individually, they had to keep peace, raise money and troops, gather information for the king and execute the judgement of his courts. It was the beginning of unpaid public service in local government by the gentry.

14th century knight [2]


Henry and his wife had at least one son, William. Burke tells us that William married a woman whose father died early in the reign of Henry V (c1413) . This seems a little late for Henry Fraunceis, but confirms the assumption that he lived in the 14th century. He may have seen the Black Death of 1348.


Their daughter-in-law was Alice de la Hele, who is said to be descended on her mother’s side from the Percehays of Combe Florey in Somerset. This manor was later to pass to William and Alice’s grandson, a younger Henry.


We have no information about when Henry died.


[1] Burke’s Genealogical and Historical History of the Landed Gentry, Vol 1. “Gwyn of Ford Abbey”.
[2] https://i.redd.it/267vm59ukw521.jpg




Sampson Tree