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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



BAUMFILDE. This is the generation of the Bampfyldes about which we know the least. Some family trees go straight from John Baunfeld in the reign of King John [1199-1216] to the John Bampfield who was given the manor of Poltimore in 1298. Clearly they cannot be father and son.

Thomas Wotton, writing in The Baronetage of England, gives the following succession for the earliest known generations:[1]

  1. Baumfilde, who married a daughter of John Hastings, and had issue
  2. Baumfilde, who married — daughter of — Hockisham, by whom he had issue
  3. John Baumfilde, Esq, who married Isabel, daughter and heiress of John Faber.

From other sources we learn that the parents of this second generation Baumfilde were John Baumfilde/Baunfeld and Joan Hastings.

We do not even know their son’s baptismal name.

His parents are believed to have married around 1219. This would put their eldest son’s likely birth in the 1220s, early in the reign of Henry III.

He grew up in the manor of Great Weston, in the Somerset village of Weston Bampfylde. This lies 7 miles north of Yeovil and 4 miles south of Castle Cary. It stood just below the Iron Age hillfort of Cadbury Castle.


HOCKISHAM/HUXHAM. The Baronetage of England does not tell us his wife’s baptismal name  either. Her surname Hockisham is generally believed to be a form of the more usual Huxham, or the older Hoxham.

The Stirnet website Bampfylde 1 believes this to be a confusion with a later John Bampfydle, who married Joan Huxham in the 14th century.

Against this, we could argue that a window in Poltimore church, showing the arms of Bampfylde and many of the Bampfylde wives, gives first place to the arms of Bampfylde, secondly Hastings, and thirdly Huxham: argent, a lion rampant sable. (A rampant black lion on a silver background.)

The Bampfylde family evidently believed that the Huxham marriage was next in line.  It is not unheard of for a family to intermarry with another more than once.

The Huxham family took their name from the tiny village of Huxham, formerly Hoxham, 3 miles from Exeter. It was about 45 miles from Weston Bampfylde, but such marriages were arranged without the couple needing to know each other beforehand.

We do not know when they married, or when the first John Baunfilde died and his son inherited the manor of Great Weston in Weston Bampfylde. It was probably around the middle of the 13th century.

We know a little more about their son and heir. Wotton is probably reliable when he tells us that they named him John. This was a very popular name in the Bampfylde family. He was probably born around the middle of the century.

The church of the Holy Cross in Weston Bampfylde was built in the 13th century, though it was refurbished in the 15th century and further altered in 19th. The Bampfyldes would have seen its construction and may have contributed towards it.

Holy Cross church, Weston Bampfylde [2]

Dedications to the Holy Cross were particularly favoured in pre-Norman England.

In the mid-13th century, there was much discontent, fuelled by the taxes needed to pay for King Henry’s foreign wars. In 1258, a coalition of barons, probably supported by Queen Eleanor, staged a coup. They forced Henry to make peace with France. In 1263, the radical baron Simon de Montfort seized power and began the Second Barons War. At one point he captured and imprisoned the king, but was killed at the Battle of Evesham in 1265.

It is not clear how much this would have impacted on a country squire and his wife in a small Somerset village, but the Bampfyldes would certainly have suffered from Henry’s taxation.



[1] Thomas Wotton, The Baronetage of England, Vol.2, 1741.
[2] British Listed Buildings, Church of The Holy Cross, Sparkford, Somerset. Weston Bampfylde is now in the parish of Sparkford.





Sampson Tree