DATA BASE REF: C/C 1072

 

HUGH CANDIDUS – EXTRACTS ON CASTOR etc

From The Peterborough Chronicle Hugh Candidus Ed by WT Mellows reprint 1997

published by Peterborough Museum Society. And additional notes by WB are in (italics).

 

Introduction

Page i. “Hugh Candidus, or Hugh White, author and complier of the first local chronicle of Peterborough, lived during the reigns of Henry I, Stephen and Henry II” – “…at one time sub-prior of the Abbey, under Abbot Martin and then Abbot William de Waterville…”

 

Founders of Peterborough Abbey – including St Kyneburgha.

Page 3. “There were three brothers, Peada, Wulfhere and Aethelred, eacha most Christian prince, albeit son of that heathen king Penda, who slew the right holy Oswald, king and martyr. For these men with their holy sisters Cyneburh and Cyneswith, who now rest there, and with King Oswy, built this monastery from its foundations, and enriched it beyond all others and amply with privileges and lands, with gold, and silver and with divers ornaments.”

 

The Death of Peada – Brother of St Kyneburgha.

Page 3…”.his wife, Alfleda, daughter of King Oswy, the brother of S.Oswald, king and martyr, who at the very season of Holy easter foully betrayed him and slew him,2 regarding not the wisdom and sanctity of her kinsfolk, of S Oswald her uncle, of Oswy her father,and of Aldfrith her brother, who humslef was married to S.Cyneburh, sister of Peada himself and loved her greatly.”

 

Of Wulfhere – and his sister St Kyneburgha, continuing the work of building the Abbey.

Page 4. “He had his brother also to help him and likewise his holy sisters Cyneburh and Cyneswith.”

 

Privileges of the Abbey – and the support of St Kyneburgha

Page 6. “…and thanksgiving of Oswy King of Northumbria, who had begun to build that monastery with Peada…… and of Cyneburh and Cyneswith, sisters of the king,…”

 

Abbey Lands at Castor – time of King Edgar and Archbishop Dunstan

Page 16. “…added by the aforesaid bishop to the said monastery, which lands are entitled Barrow,…, Castor, Ailsworth, Walton…. These vills therefore….together with all things and causes and with all that which is called sac and soc let them be forever free from all royal right,etc,…in woods and pastures, meadows, fens, hunting, fisheries, tolls and all things coming forth by the favour of God…”

 

Of St Kyneburgha and Castor Church – in the time of Abbot Aelfsy.

Page 23. “There was in his (Aelfsy) days a much ruined church at Cyneburch-caster (Castor) 1, where reposed S.Cyneburh and her sister S.Cyneswith, the daughters of King Penda, who slew S.Oswald, king and martyr. Now the monks of Ramsey earnestly desired and plotted day and night to cary them away, wishing to have them brought to their own monastery. But it was neither the will of God, nor their own desire, that these saints should repose in any other place save only in the keeping of him who bears the keys, who brought them into the presence of Christ. Now there was in the Burch a certain sacrist, called Leofwin, who earnestly entreated the holy saints and invited them to come to his monastery, and had given his undertaking that on their coming they should be held in special honour. His prayers and vows were heard by God in His great goodness, and by those pious virgins, even as we find in full in the account of the translation of those saints to Burch, whereof it would be tedious to speak in detail.”

 

Note 1. “A.S.C. 963. It is difficult to reconcile the account of the removal of the bodies of SS. Cyneburh and Cyneswithwith the statement in Chron.Abb.John, p. 18, where the author of the latter tells his story of the destruction of the monastery by the Danes in870 adding: ‘Altaria omnia suffosa sanctarum Kyneburge, Kyneswite ac Tibbe preciosa pignora pedibus conculcata…ipsa ecclesia cum omnibus ceteris edificilis concremata.’”

(Additional Note by WB: this was not straightforward to translate- if any can do better let me know, but here goes:”All the undermined/overthrown altars of the holy virgins Kyneburge, Kyneswite and Tibba valuable assurances/pledges? trampled under foot… own church with all the rest of the edifices burnt.”. Question: does “own/same church” refer to Castor? I think so. In which case what was exactly translated – ashes?)

 

 

 

 

Of Divers Saints – including Kyneburgha

Page 26. “ But Merewald, Peada, Wulfhere, Aethelred, S.Cyneburh and S.Cyneswith were children of Penda. And though their father was a pagan yet were they holy Christians. S.Tibba was near kin to them.”

 

Robert of Castor – in the time of Abbot Ernulf.

Page 42. “In his days came one named Robert of Castor, when he was ill, and gave to S.Peter and to the abbot and monks fifty pounds of silver, and was made monk himself along with his son William, a youth of good character.”

 

Court Baron at Castor – in the time of Abbot John de Seez.

Page 45. “For the abbot the same day had cursed the monastery, and in his anger, because he was in a rage, had too recklessly commended it to the Enemy. (the Devil) The brethren had entered the refectory in the morning to re-arrange the boards, and because this displeased him he cursed them, and straightway went to his court Baron 5 at Castor”.

Note “5. The original word is “placitum”. We learn from other sources such as the book of charters of Henry of Pytchley that the court baron of the honour was at Castor just as Maitland’s court baron of Ramsey was at Broughton.”

 

Papal Bull Conforms Castor to the Abbey – time of Abbot Martin. 1146AD.

Page 51. “Eugnius (Pope Eugenius III) bishop…decreeing that whatsoever goods and possessions….; Castor with the church and the chapels adjoining the same church with the mills and all its appurtenances.”

 

Of Marholm & Upton to the Abbey - time of Abbot Martin. 17 Dec 1146AD.

Page 53. “These estates 1 which are held in fee from the same monastery…; the fee of Ascelin de Waterville: Thorp(Achurch), Marholm, and Upton, with all their appurtenances;…the fee of Roger of Milton with its appurtenances;…in Woodcroft, the tenement of Osbern;..”

Note1. These are the estates alienated in knight’s service by Turold the first Norman abbot when the estates of the abbey were feudalised and the honour of Peterborough was created (see above p.38.) A much fuller account of these fees may be read in Henry of Pytchley’s book of fees, N.r.S., Vol II.”

 

Second Papal Bull re Marholm & Castor dues to the Abbey – time of Abbot Martin. 18 Dec 1146AD

Page 55. “ Eugenius… to grant it gladly…; from Marholm, 10s.; the church of Castor with its chapels and tithes and lands and all its appurtenances;… of Robert of Woodcroft, 7s. for a messuage in Burch,…; 5s. of Guy of Milton.”

 

Wood at Castor – time of Abbot William de Waterville. c 1156AD.

Page 61. “He (the Abbot) also bought a very useful wood at Castor.

 

Pension from Castor Church– time of Abbot William de Waterville. c 1156AD

Page 62. "The pension from the church at Peakirk he increased from 3/- to 15/- a year; so too from the church of Castor from one mark to one hundred shillings;…”