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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)

Sampson  Tree



ODO L’ARCEDEKNE was the second son of Thomas L’Arcedekne and his wife Alice. Various internet family trees put his birthdate in the 1250s.

This was the reign of King Henry III, when the barons rebelled against the king, until their leader Simon de Montfort was killed in 1265. By the time Odo reached maturity, Edward I was on the throne, and intent on subjugating Wales.

Odo’s elder brother Geoffry would have been expected to succeed him, but Geoffry died a minor without issue.[1] At the time, Odo was away fighting with the King against the Welsh.

Odo became the heir to his father’s lands when Thomas died, probably in 1277 or soon after.

Geoffry (3a), eldest son of Thomas (2b), died a minor, j.p. An inquisition referring to him was taken at Tregony, 4 May, 1339, on the petition of Sir John Archdeacon (5b), great-grandson of Thomas (2b), who alleged that Katherine de Monte Acuto, who was at one time Lady of the Manor of Elerky, gave the same to John Gattesden and his heirs, And that John gave the manor to Richard Earl of Cornwall, who gave the same to Thomas Lercedekne, great-grand-father of the petitioner, and the manor descended to Geoffry son of Thomas, who, being under age, William Monketon, Sheriff of Cornwall, took his body and the manor into the King’s hands. The said Geoffry died within age, and his brother Odo (3b), who at the time was with the King in the Welsh wars, afterwards had livery of the said manor (Escheats, No. 62, 13 Edw. III).


AMICE. Odo married Amice or Amicia. We have no information about her origins.


They are known to have had two sons: Thomas and Odo.

Records of their son Thomas and grandson John may give some clue as to where Odo and Amice lived. The house at Ruan Lanihorne had not yet been fortified as a castle, but it may have been their home. RUAN-LANIHORNE, in the deanery and in the west division of the hundred of Powder, lies about two miles and a half south-west from Tregony, which is the post-office town, and about five miles and a half east-south-east from Truro. The only village, besides the church-town, is Treworga. Mr. Whitaker supposed that Ruan-Lanihorne was formerly a market-town (fn. 13) . It seems not improbable that the market at Shepestall, granted to John Arcedekne in 1335 (fn. 14) , was in this parish: Thomas Arcedekne, when summoned to parliament in the reign of Edward I., was described as of Shepestall. We have not been able to find any place so called in the county; the circumstance of the ancient property and residence of the Arcedeknes being in this parish, and of there being a field adjoining to this parish, called Little Shepestall, renders it probable, that though the name has been long forgotten, the seat of the Arcedeknes in this place might formerly have been called Shepestall. The manors of Lanihorne and Ellerkey, in this parish, and Veryan, were certainly the ancient property of the Arcedeknes, whose chief residence was at a castle in Lanihorne.[2] Like the house, the church at Ruan Lanihorne was to be enlarged in the following century.

Ruan Lanihorne was one of the ancient Lanns.  These were early Christian settlements dating back to the 5th or 6th centuries.  However Lanihorne was not important enough for it to be recorded under its own name in the Doomsday Book.

The Church of St. Rumon The church is dedicated to St.Rumon.  Like many Cornish Saints, St. Rumon’s origins are not documented with clarity, but indications are that he was a monk with connections to Glastonbury Abbey about the 800’s or some believe that he was an Irish Bishop.  He founded a church here as well as having connections with the Lizard area.  William of Malmesbury (1090-1143) tells us that Ordulphus Duke of Cornwall moved St.Rumon’s bones from Ruan to Tavistock Abbey (possibly in 961).[3]

Rumon was also the saint who gave his name to Romansleigh in Devon, where our Sampson ancestors lived in the 19th century.

The earliest recorded rector of the church was Sir William de Bodrygan in 1282, although there was probably some form of church prior to this and F Hitchens in his ‘History of Cornwall’ (1824) thought that an early church was built on the site in 936.  There is a small shield in the church that tells us that the church was built in 1321, however this was probably a consecration following a rebuild.  The east wall of the chancel can be observed to be of a different and heavier construction when compared to the surrounding structures, this may well date to the earlier church of 936.  The rest of the south aisle and part of the south transept date to the early 14th century.  By the middle of the 14th century with Lanihorne Castle in its full glory a larger church was needed.  The north aisle was added and at this time the north transept if one existed was removed.

 Odo and Amice did indeed live there in the late 13th century, then Sir William de Bodrygan would have been rector in their time.

 Odo and Amice held lands in both Devon and Cornwall.

Cornwall Feet of Fines, No. 318. At Westminster, 27 Oct., 1285. Between Eymer de Ponte and Matilda his wife, and Odo Le Erchedekne as to the manors of Ruddory (in Gwinear) and Ryvers (in Phillack). To Odo and his heirs, etc., For which Odo gave to Eymer and Matilda 160 marks of silver.

MILTON-ABBOTS, in the hundred and deanery of Tavistock, lies on the road from Tavistock to Launceston, about six miles from each. Foghanger and Quither are villages in this parish.

The manor was given, together with the barton of Leigh, to the abbot and convent of Tavistock, by its founder, Ordulph. After the dissolution, it was granted to John Lord Russell, ancestor of his Grace the Duke of Bedford, who is the present proprietor. The manor of Week Dabernon was given to the monastery of Tavistock by John Dabernon, of Bradford, in 1353; that of West Liditon (fn. 30) , (partly in this parish,) by Odo le Arcedekne, in 1288… The abbot of Tavistock had a park at Inneslegh, in the reign of Richard II. (fn. 31) Leigh is said to have been one of the country residences of the abbots.[4]

In 1289 Odo held West Liddaton (Brentor), and made it over to the Abbat of Tavistock (Trans. XLVI, p. 236).

Odo, son of Thomas, died in 1290. Inq. p.m. marked ” deest,” 18 Edw. I. His wife Amicia, survived him, leaving [their son] Thomas his heir. His will is recorded but lost. The records of Torre Abbey state that in 1291 the whole property of an estate given by Sir Odo le Arcedekne was appropriated for ever to the providing of the poor with clothes and shoes (E. D. A. 8. Trans., 1844, p. 54). Amicia alias Alice, relict of Odo, afterwards married “Serlo de Nansladron vel Lansladron,” who in 1304 held ⅓ of the manor of Elerky (S. Veryan) in right of Amicia his wife as dower (Extent. 32 Edw. I, No. 196). Amicia also held the manor of Lanyhorne in socage during the minority of Roger de la Poyle’ (Coram Rege Roll, 30 Edw. I). Nansladron is in St. Ewe (see Cornwall F. of F., No. 505).  This is the first record we find of the L’Arcedeknes holding Ruan Lanihorne. The castle of Ruan Lanihorne was to become important as the seat of the L’Arcedeknes, but the house was not fortified until 1334.

River Fal near Ruan Lanihorne

1297. Serlo was returned as holding £20 yearly, and therefore eligible as a Knight for military service. 1298. Summoned from Devon for military service. 1301. Summoned as a Baron.  There was a dispute in 1303-4 with the dowager Countess of Cornwall over the inheritance of the remarried Amice and her son Thomas. Calend. Genealogicum, No. 195, 32 Edw. I, says, ” Margaret, relict of Edmund, Earl of Cornwall. Extent of the manors of which the said Margaret claimed ⅓ part against Walter de Cornu, Thomas Lercedekne, and Serlo de Lanladron and Amicia his wife ; the said Serlo and his wife do not hold to the full third part of the third part of the manor of Ilerky, because a certain Alice, the mother of Odo Lercedekne was dowered with a certain part of the said manor on the day on which Odo her son died, also because Amicia, wife of Odo, was unable to hold the third part of the same manor by way of dower.” Alice, wife of the older Thomas L’Arcedekne, had survived both her husband and her sons. As long as she lived, her daughter-in-law Amice could not take full possession of Odo’s lands.

Ilerky was not the only manor held by Serlo and Amice in this way. The manor of Shobrooke, near Crediton in Devon, had been in the hands of the L’Arcedekne family in the  time of Odo’s grandfather, Michael L’Arcedekne.

Copy of deeds relating to the manor and advowson of Shobrooke
(b) Fine, of Shobrooke manor, Urban de Trewit and Idonia his wife querants and Thomas Archdeacon deforciants. The querants recognize two thirds of the manor to be the right of Thomas Archdeacon, and further acknowledge that the remaining third shall descend to Thomas after the death of Serlo of Nanslandron and Amice his wife, who holds the third of the manor in dower. Undated.[5]
1305 and 1307. Serlo was summoned to Parliament.

1308 and 1314. Summoned for military service against the Scots.

1317, 20 Feb. He was one of the persons accused of making a forcible entry into the manor of Godolphin, belonging to Johannes de Treiago (Palgrave’s Writs, p. 1077). John Treiago or Treiagu was a Conservator of the Peace in 1287 ; tax collector in 1301 ; a Burgess for Truro in 1305 ; and M.P. for Cornwall 1307.  Arms of Lansladron : Arg. 3 chevronels Sable (Lysons Cornwall).


Amice died sometime after 1304.


[1] The principal source for the genealogy is Searley, A.W.,“Haccombe, Part II, (1330-1440)”, Report & Transactions of the Devonshire Association Vol 51 (1919).

[2] ‘Parishes: Quethiock – Ruan Minor’, Magna Britannia: volume 3: Cornwall (1814), pp. 274-280. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=50650.

[3] Carol Hughes, The History of Ruan Lanihorne .

[4] ‘Parishes: Maker – Musbury’, Magna Britannia: volume 6: Devonshire (1822), pp. 326-360. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=50584&strquery=odo

[5] A2A: Z1/27/1/1  [15th Century]





Sampson Tree