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master and brethren of the St. Leonard's Hospital, York, at a yearly rent of 10s. iod., all the land at Houe (Howe, in the parish of Pickhill), which she held in dower. Witnesses, Sir Henry de Holteby, knight, Ralph de Rugemond, and Thomas de Gatenby.1

In Trinity Term, 7 Edward II (1314), John, son of John, son of Michael de Sixton (sic), and Joan his wife, brought their action of 'nuper obiit '? against John de la More and B., his wife, for a division of the estates in C.3 of Henry Mancell, father of Joan and B., who died without issue male. Mancell had granted the manor of Berreford in frank marriage with his daughter Joan.

In 1323, John de Wauxand and Joan, his wife, granted to Sir John de Siggeston, knight, three messuages and four bovates of land in Winton, part of Joan's inheritance. This proves that Joan Mansel, on the death of John of Sigston, married as her second husband John of Wassand, and also accounts for the presence of the Wassand arms in Sigston church, and possibly those of Maunsel.

Of John de Sigeston's son, who bore the same Christian name, more information has been preserved. He occurs in 1322 as keeper of the royal castles and towns of Huntingdon and La Haye. 6 In 1 Edward III (1327) he contributed 4s. to a subsidy levied at Sigston in that year.? Why no notice was taken of his knighthood it is impossible to say. In the summer of the same year he petitioned the king that, when his accounts were taken, he should be allowed the wages due to him for his services in the marches of Scotland.8 It is most probable he owed his knighthood to his achievements in the Border warfare during the troublous times after Bannockburn. In 1328 he had a grant of freewarren in his demesne lands in Siggeston, Winton, Foxton, Fritheby (Firby near Bedale), and Brodforth (Birdforth), near Thirsko. In 1332, as


1 Dodsworth MSS., cviii, 83.

Nuper obiit is a writ that lies for a coheir, being deforced by her coparcener of lands or tenements, of which the grandfather, father, uncle, or brother to them both died seised of an estate in fee simple (Cowel's Interpreter).

Henry Mansel held lands in Birdforth, Winton, and Halikeld in 1284-5 (Kirkby's Inquest, pp. 94, 103).

Dodsworth MŠS., cxlvi, 34, citing Coram Rege, Mich., 29 Edw. I, rot. 239 ; Hilary, 32 Edw. I, rot. 144 ; and Easter, 16 Ric. II, rot. 37.

(sic), Sir William de Aslakeby, knights. In 1315-6, John de Waxand, John de la Mor, and John Mansel were lords of Birdforth, and John Waxand and John de la Mare (? de la More) of Thornton-leStreet (Kirkby's Inquest, pp. 323, 340).

6 Calendar of Close Rolls (1318–23), p. 415. ? Ex. Lay Subsidies, York. N.R , 6',

20. The other contributors were Adam de Kirkeby, 25 ; Gilbert de Kirkeby, Richard Scot, Richard de Braby, and John de Landemot, each 12d. Sum, 1os.

Ibid., xci, 176. The exact date is Sunday before All Saints' (Oct. 30) 17 Edw. II. The witnesses recorded are Sir John de Colevill, Sir John de Coyners

8 Calendar of Close Rolls (1327-30), p. 135.

9 Calendar of Charter Rolls, iv, 99.



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Sir John de Siggeston he paid 5s. 8d. to another subsidy, levied at Winton, in the parish of Sigston.

In 1335, Nicholas de la Lound, living in the neighbouring village of Thornton in 'le Vivers' (Thornton-le-Beans), acknowledged he was indebted to Sir John in the sum of roli.?

The year following (1336) he had licence to crenelate his manor of Beresendes in the county of York. Though this name has long been obsolete, there can be little doubt it refers to the earthwork to the north of the road between Northallerton and Osmotherley, near Sigston Bridge, now known as Sigston Castle, though in the township of Winton. I am indebted to a member of our Society, Mr. W. M. l'Anson, for a description of the site of this castle, which he recently visited :

“Of the earthworks which are all that now mark the site of this castle, I cannot tell you anything beyond what would be apparent to you when you visited the place. The site selected, a typically “late" one, and the general contour of the earthworks, do not suggest a fortress of a date anterior to about 1340. The site, and the methods of defence adopted, somewhat resemble Ravensworth, a late Richmondshire castle.

“The enclosure is roughly rectangular in shape, defended by a deep and broad moat carried round it, and by adjacent marshy ground. The entrance appears to have been on the north, defended by substantial outworks beyond the counterscarp of the ditch, traces of which are very apparent.

“ It is somewhat singular that no stonework whatever remains in situ, and it is quite impossible even to hazard a guess as to what were the arrangements, although the uneven ground which is conspicuous about the centre of the enclosure would suggest the one-time presence of buildings, and the same may be said of the earthworks opposite the entrance.

“ In all probability, the structure was not of massive proportions, depending almost entirely for its defence upon the somewhat formidable ditch. At the time of its erection, about the middle of the fourteenth century, attack might only be expected from bands of Scottish invaders, and as these seldom or never travelled with siege engines, the moat would afford adequate protection.” 1 Ex. Lay Subsidies, m. 13d.

3 Calendar of Patent Rolls (1334-8), p.

221. Query Berefeude, that is, barley-field. Sum total 205., of which Walter del Hille

It occurs as Berreford in 1313 (supra and John Artays paid 45. each, William de Bergesheued 25., Jordan de Wynton

p. 141), Beresende in 1336, and Berford in

15 Edward III (1311) above, and as the 12d., John de Dale 18d., and William

castle and manor of Bereshend alias Fraunceys 25. 6d. 2 Calendar of Close Rolls (1333-7, 7.487.

Sygston in 1555 (Feet of Fines, Tudor, i, 186),

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In 1341, Sir John de Siggeston and Sir William Bruys, no doubt a member of the Pickering family of that name, were knights of the shire at the Parliament which met on the Monday after the Quinzaine of Easter in that year (April 23). The members for Yorkshire sat for forty-four days, for which they received pay at the rate of 4s. a day. It was at this Parliament the King promised before supplies were granted (a) that all moneys received should be audited by a board chosen in Parliament, and (6) that he would not choose ministers without the consent of his council, and (c) that at each Parliament ministers should resign, and be compelled to answer all complaints before they could be reappointed. It is true the King recalled the statutes, but a great principle had been asserted, and a step forward in constitutional government taken, which bore fruit in later times.

The evidence relating to Sir John now gets scanty. On January 27th, 1343, he paid roli. for a licence for the alienation in mortmain of a messuage, nine acres of land, one acre of meadow, and 6os. rent in Siggeston, Foxton, and Alverton, to a chaplain, who was to celebrate service daily in the parish church of Siggeston, for his soul, and the souls of his ancestors. It was probably in connection with this chantry that the stained glass still existing was placed in the church. The female now in the aisle may also be associated with this event.

The last instance we have of any mention of Sir John of Sigston is on September 16th, 1343, when he and Henry le Pork were nominated as attorneys of Bartholomew Fanačourt, who was going on pilgrimage beyond the seas. Fanacourt was a Frenchman, who was the third husband of Lucy de Thweng, 4 and Henry le Pork had married Sigston's cousin, Elizabeth Colville.5

As nothing more is heard of John de Siggeston, it is probable he died somewhere about this date. Dodsworth' gives a pedigree derived from charters of Everingham Cressy of Birkin, showing that John's only son Philip died without issue in 15 Edward III (1341), leaving John Plaice and John de Wadesley his heirs. The fact is probably right, though the date is incorrect. According to these charters, John de Siggeston, knt, was possessed of the castle

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i Cal. of Close Rolls (1341–3), p. 144.
2 Cal. of Patent Rolls (1343-5), p. 6.
3 Ibid., p. 116.

Guisborough Chart. (Surtees Soc.,
1xxxvi), ii, 1241.
6 Y.A.J., xvi, 167.

at rather later date another John de Siggeston, who was acquiring property in Kepwick and

Northallerton in 1345 (Yorkshire Fines (1327--1347), pp. 180, 181). In 1362, John de Siggeston of Alverton (North allerton) was absolved from a sentence of greater excommunication for violent laying on of hands on John de Otrington, clerk, to the shedding of blood (Thoresby's Register, fo. 283).

7 Dodsworth MSS., xci, 177d.


of Berford, in Siggeston, and of rents and services in Siggeston, Foxton, Winton, Alverton (Northallerton), Fyrthby, Baldersdale, Newton, Ingle (?), Scorton, Thresk, Bagby, Kepewyk, and Brodford.

The skeleton pedigree here given will prove useful in understanding these notes. The additional information is derived from the Dodsworth MSS., xci, 177d.

ARMS:--Argent a double-headed eagle sable displayed, beak and feet gules.

Michael de Ryhill, 1238-9=Alice de Flamville

Other issue

John son of Michael de Ryhill,=Joan Colville, 1268


Brian son of John,
1284-5, 0.s.p.

John son of John son of=(1) Ilria, relict of Geoffrey
Michael of Sigston,

of Maunby, 1283

=(2) Joan, dau. of Henry

Mansel, 1314. She married, secondly, John of Wassand. Both alive 1323



Sir John of Sigston, knt.,


Philip, 0.s.p:

Joan=Thomas Plaice

15 Edw. III

Agnes1=Sir Robert de


John, 15 Edw. III

John, 15 Edw. III

John, 15 Edw. III

Robert son of Robert de Waddesley and Agnes his wife were parties to a fine about lands in Wilsick, near Tickhill, and

Asenby, and Dishforth, near Thirsk, in 1329 (Yorkshire Fines (1327-1347), p. 26).


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