There appear to have been two Hampshire thegns called Agemund in 1066, both of whom survived the Conquest as king’s thegns and were distinguished in DB only as Agemund and ‘the other Agemund’. It is not possible to disentangle their estates before or after the Conquest. Given the rarity of the name they were probably close kinsmen. Between them they had nine manors, mostly in western Hampshire and including one just over the boundary in Wiltshire. Altogether they were assessed at almost 19 hides and worth over £17. The two Agemunds between them still had five of those manors in 1086, of 12½ hides worth £7 5s., holding four directly from the king and one from Hugh de Port.
Distribution map of property and lordships associated with this name in DB
List of property and lordships associated with this name in DB
DB assigns ten pre-Conquest manors in Hampshire and Wiltshire to the name Agemund and is explicit that in 1086 there were two surviving king’s thegns of that name, since successive Hampshire entries start with the words ‘Agemund holds Wellow from the king . . .’ (Agemundus tenet de rege Weleue . . .) and ‘The other Agemund holds Hotlop from the king . . .’ (Agemundus alter tenet de rege Hotlop . . .). It is inconceivable that the scribe of GDB understood this as meaning anything other than that there were two king’s thegns of the same name in 1086; whether his understanding reflected reality is, in the last resort, unknowable. It is thus frustrating that we cannot be sure which of the two Agemunds appears as a king’s thegn three entries further on, and again over the page, and again (this time as a tenant of Hugh de Port) elsewhere in the Hampshire folios.
The same Agemund as in 1086 had held all five of those manors TRE, and Agemund further appears as the TRE owner at another five places, but again, they cannot be divided between the two king’s thegns. Following GDB to the letter, all we can say is that there were two Hampshire landowners called Agemund in 1066 and that they both survived in 1086, but not who owned what. The manors in question are mostly in the western part of the county, along the Wiltshire border or around the New Forest. Given the rarity of the name Agemund it is very likely that the two Agemunds were members of the same family. All the estates are thus discussed below as a group.
The largest of the TRE manors was East Wellow, a hilly and well wooded vill on the Blackwater, 10 miles up the valley from Southampton. Agemund’s property there was assessed at 5 hides and had land for 3 ploughs. Its DB entry notes that Waleran had taken 1½ virgates from the manor and put them in Wiltshire. This clearly identifies the land in question as West Wellow, a tithing of the parish of East Wellow which was in Wiltshire until 1895 (VCH Hants, IV, 535). The assessment and connection with Waleran also make it clear that this was the same piece of land recorded in the Hampshire fief of Waleran the huntsman as 1½ virgates which had been held by Agemund from King Edward as an alod (i.e. in the same way as East Wellow); the hundred and the shire declared in 1086 that it belonged to Wellow. In that entry it was named as Otoiche. Otoiche has traditionally been identified as Outwick, a tithing and hamlet in Breamore parish, 10 miles west of Wellow (VCH Hants, IV, 598; Darby and Versey 1975: 167 and map 21; Phill. Hants, entry 45:2, index of places, and map; Williams and Martin 2002: 117). The early spellings of Outwick have not been collected, but Otoiche is improbable as a spelling of Outwick if Outwick, as seems likely, meant ‘the out wīc’. To judge from the rather small number of place-names in wīc recorded in DB in the four shires of eastern Wessex, the final element wīc was never rendered –oiche (Burnewic = Brownwick, Hants; Chedelwich = Chadderwick, Wilts.; Cowic = Conock, Wilts.; Scapeuuic, Escapewich = Shapwick, Dors.; Sonwic, Sonuich = Swanage, Dors.; Wica = Week, Hants).
North of Wellow were the smaller manors of Shoddesden, East Grimstead (just over the boundary in Wiltshire), and probably Hotlop. Hotlop has never been identified: it can hardly have been Oakley in Mottisfont, as suggested (VCH Hants, IV, 506; Phill. Hants, note 69,23), since the DB spelling simply does not fit with the recorded early forms of Oakley. The distinctive ending of Hotlop rather suggests some gross miscopying of the place-name Wallop (DB Wallope, Wallop). Hotlop was certainly in the same hundred as the two Wallops and has been mapped at Middle Wallop.
South of Wellow one or other of the Agemunds had considerably smaller holdings at Totton (at the head of the Test estuary), Foxlease, and Rollstone. Rather further away was 2 hides held from the bishop of Winchester’s manor of Droxford, a subsidiary holding named by DB as ‘in Benestede’ and identifiable on the ground as St Clair’s (Phill. Hants, note 3,9, correcting VCH Hants, II, 485). Finally, one of the Agemunds held Chineham in north-east Hampshire. The bulk of the Hampshire and Wiltshire manors discussed here were within 15 miles of East Wellow, another two manors were within 20 miles, and only Chineham was as much as 30 miles distant.
The various pre-Conquest manors were held in different ways: St Clair’s on lease from the bishop of Winchester, Wellow, Hotlop, and Chineham from King Edward, and Shoddesden from Queen Eadgyth.
The two Agemunds between them retained about two thirds of this estate in 1086. What they lost amounted to 6½ virgates taken into the king’s forest, the lease of St Clair’s, and the Wiltshire manor, given to Waleran the huntsman in a way which evidently encouraged him to abstract another 1½ virgates from Wellow. Whichever Agemund had held Chineham TRE was pushed down the tenurial pyramid to become a tenant of Hugh de Port. The lease of St Clair’s was also transferred to Hugh, but since DB (as usual) does not record any tenure under the subtenant, it is conceivable that Agemund retained an interest there. That left about 9 hides in the Agemunds’ hands as king’s thegns in 1086, together with 3 hides at Chineham held under Hugh de Port.
Darby and Versey 1975: H. C. Darby and G. R. Versey, Domesday Gazetteer (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1975)
Phill. Hants: Domesday Book, ed. John Morris, 4: Hampshire, ed. Julian Munby (Chichester: Phillimore, 1982)
VCH Hants: The Victoria History of the Counties of England: The Victoria History of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, ed. William Page [and H. A. Doubleday], 5 vols and index (London, 1900–14)
Williams and Martin 2002: Domesday Book: A Complete Translation, ed. Ann Williams and G. H. Martin (London: Penguin, 2002)