The Phillips, Weber, Kirk, & Staggs families of the Pacific Northwest

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  • ID: I11266
  • Name: Ralph de CHESNEY , of Rudham 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
  • Sex: M
  • ALIA: Ralph Sire de /Quesnay/
  • Name: Radolphus de CAISNETO
  • Birth: ABT 1044 in La Quesnay, Seine-Inferieure, Normandy, France
  • Death: AFT 1086 in Rudham, Docking, Norfolk, England 9
  • Note:
    Fought in the Battle of Hastings


    Manor of Fulking, Sussex:

    The early history of the manor of Fulking is so closely intertwined with that of Perching, also in Edburton parish, that it seems impossible to disentangle it. In 1086 Fulking was held as 3 hides and 1 virgate by Tezelin, the cook, of Earl Warenne, and with it as one manor 2 hides in Perching. William de Watevile held of Earl Warenne 5 hides at Perching that were held by two men of Azor before the Conquest, while Osward continued in occupation of the 3 hides at Perching that he had held of King Edward.

    The overlordship of half a knight's fee, variously ascribed to Fulking and Perching, descended with the rape and was assigned in 1439 to Elizabeth, Lady Bergavenny. In the 16th century the Crown resumed the overlordship. This half-fee descended in the Say family, at least until 1428, and this connexion gives grounds for linking the half-fee with the 5 hides in Perching of William de Watevile, which probably came into the hands of the Chesney family through the marriage of Ralph de Chesney, living in 1086, with Maud daughter of William de Watevile. Possessions of the Chesney family subsequently descended by marriage to Geoffrey de Say, early in the 13th century. [Victoria County History, A History of the County of Sussex: Volume 7, L. F. Salzman (editor), 1940, Pages 202-4,]


    Manor of Hamsey, Sussex:

    In 1086 Ralph de Chesney held Hamsey of William de Warenne as 14 hides, though it paid geld for 13 hides. Of this land Hugh and Ralph, possibly his sons, held respectively 1 hide and hide. The overlordship descended with the rape but since, in 1439, the 14 fees once held by William de Say were divided between John, Duke of Norfolk, and Edmund Lenthall, it is uncertain with which portion of the barony this manor was subsequently held.

    The Domesday 'Hame' formed the caput of the 14 fees that descended through the Chesney to the Say family, from whom the manor derived its name of HAMSEY. Thus, in 1242-3, William de Say was holding 14 knights' fees dependent on 'Hammes'; in 1295 and 1322 Hamsey was held by the service of 13 knights' fees. In 1439 the 14 fees were said to be held in Hamsey, Barcombe, Streat, and Newtimber.

    Hamsey descended with Streat (q.v.), passing from the Chesneys and the Says to William, Lord Clinton. Unlike Streat, however, it was not subjected to subinfeudation by William de Say c. 1296, nor was it bequeathed in 1359 to a younger son. At that time it was held as 1 knight's fee.

    John, son of William, Lord Clinton, settled the manor on his wife Margaret St. Leger, and died in 1464. His heir, another John, in 1484 conveyed the manor, then called HAMMES and HEYNSTRETE, to Sir Henry Willoughby. This was perhaps a mortgage, as his son John, Lord Clinton, appealed to the Court of Chancery for possession of the deeds of the manor, of which he declared himself seised. He appears subsequently to have sold the manor to Edmund Dudley, who was holding it in 1503-4 and in December 1507 made a grant of 20 a year from it to the Free School of Southover. His son Sir John, in 1526, conveyed the manor to Thomas West. [Victoria County History, A History of the County of Sussex: Volume 7, L. F. Salzman (editor), 1940, Pages 83-7,]


    Manor of Brighton-Lewes, Sussex:

    In the time of Edward the Confessor, Brighton was divided into three holdings, two of which belonged to the king and the third to Earl Godwin. Each part was in the hands of sub-tenants. The largest holding, 6 hides and 1 virgate, was held by three alodial tenants, of whom one had a hall, the other two holdings being in the hands of villeins. The second of the king's holdings was held by Ulward, whose land was assessed at 5 hides. Earl Godwin's holding was also assessed at 5 hides and he gave it to a tenant named Brictric. By 1086 all three holdings were in the hands of William de Warenne, as part of his barony of Lewes. The earl had given each holding to a Norman sub-tenant; the largest was held as one manor by Widard, and four haws in Lewes were attached to it; Ulward's land was held by William de Wateville and the church was on his holding; Brictric had been succeeded by Ralph, and from this holding a rent of 4,000 herrings was paid.

    One holding evidently escheated to the overlords, since in 1284 the chief manor in Brighton, subsequently known as the manor of BRIGHTON-LEWES, was held in demesne by John, Earl Warenne. It was probably identical with Earl Godwin's holding, since the herring rent of 1086 suggests a fishing community, and a toll of 6 mackerel per boat was due as late as 1862 from the Brighton fishermen, each time they came in from mackerel fishing. The Domesday tenant Ralph was probably Ralph de Caisneto (Chesney), with whom he has been identified on the somewhat illogical ground that Ralph de Chesney gave to Lewes Priory the church of Brighton, which actually was on William de Wateville's land. Chesney succeeded to many of Wateville's holdings in Sussex and certainly in Brighton, since besides his gift of the church his descendants were mesne lords there for several centuries. Possibly Ralph de Chesney's grandson John surrendered Earl Godwin's holding, when he succeeded his father about 1147. He obviously found himself in difficulties over paying to the earl the relief due for his lands. Certainly in 1175 Earl William III was able to grant land in Brighton to the priory of Lewes, which suggests that he was already holding the manor of Brighton-Lewes in demesne. [Victoria County History, A History of the County of Sussex: Volume 7, L. F. Salzman (editor), 1940, Pages 244-63,]

    Marriage 1 Maud de WATEVILE b: ABT 1048 in Fulking, Cuckfield, Sussex, England
      1. Has Children Ralph II de CHESNEY , of Rudham & Streat b: ABT 1066 in Rudham, Docking, Norfolk, England
      2. Has Children William de CHESNEY , Lord of Caenby & Glentham b: ABT 1066 in Caenby, Lincoln, Lincolnshire, England
      3. Has Children Roger de CHESNEY , of Graffham & Ducklington b: ABT 1070 in Ducklington, Witney, Oxfordshire, England
      4. Has Children John de CHENEY , of Newtimber b: ABT 1072 in Newtimber, Cuckfield, Sussex, England
      5. Has Children Hawise de CHESNEY b: ABT 1075 in Rudham, Docking, Norfolk, England
      6. Has Children Philip de CAISNETO , of Addington b: ABT 1080 in Addington, Croydon, Surrey, England

      1. Title: Complete Peerage of England Scotland Ireland Great Britain and the United Kingdom, by G. E Cokayne, Sutton Publishing Ltd, 2000
        Page: V:72 chart
        Text: Ralph de Chesney, of Rudham
      2. Title: Some Corrections and Additions to the Complete Peerage,
        Page: corrections for Geoffrey de Say, d. 1214
        Text: father of Ralph II, and grandfather of John Chesney
      3. Title: VCH - Sussex: URL:
        Media: Book
        Page: VII:113-15, see notes for John Cheyne, d.> 1147
      4. Title: VCH - Sussex: URL:
        Media: Book
        Page: VII:83-7
      5. Title: VCH - Sussex: URL:
        Media: Book
        Page: VII:244-63
      6. Title: VCH - Sussex: URL:
        Media: Book
        Page: VII:204-8
      7. Title: VCH - Sussex: URL:
        Media: Book
        Page: VII:202-4
      8. Title: An Essay towards a Topographical History of the County of Norfolk, by Francis Blomefield,
        Page: VII:151-7, see notes for John Chesney, d. <1147
        Text: grandfather of John
      9. Title: Complete Peerage of England Scotland Ireland Great Britain and the United Kingdom, by G. E Cokayne, Sutton Publishing Ltd, 2000
        Page: V:72 chart
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