PASE: Prosopography of Anglo-Saxon England


[Image: Excerpt from the Domesday Book]
[Image: Durham Liber Vitae, folio 38r (extract)]

Hwætmann 2 Hwætmann ‘of Yatton’ (Herefs.), fl. 1066

Author: CPL
Editorial Status: 4 of 5

Discussion of the name  


Hwætmann 2 was a small landowner in south Herefordshire whose solitary manor of 1 hide was reckoned thegnland and paid a customary rent of 30s., probably to Earl Harold’s manor of Much Marcle.

Distribution map of property and lordships associated with this name in DB

List of property and lordships associated with this name in DB

Holder 1066

Shire Phil. ref. Vill Holder 1066 DB Spelling Holder 1066 Lord 1066 Tenant-in-Chief 1086 1086 subtenant Fiscal value 1066 value 1086 value Holder 1066 ID conf. Show on map
Herefordshire 1,75 Yatton Wetman Hwætmann 'of Yatton' - William, king Humphrey the chamberlain 1.00 1.50 1.50 A Map
Total               1.00 1.50 1.50  


Yatton, in the rolling hills east of the river Wye in south Herefordshire, was entered in DB as the final item in the Terra regis for the shire, in a format which differs from that for any other of William I’s Herefordshire manors.

In Yatton Hwætmann held one hide paying geld, and could go where he wished. Hugh held at farm from Humphrey the king’s chamberlain, and it used to pay 30s. and still pays the same [meaning ‘still ought to pay’?]. This land was thegnland TRE but afterwards it was changed to reeveland, & so the king’s commissioners say that the land itself & the rent which comes from it have been taken covertly from the king.

In Getvune tenuit Wetman unam hidam geldantam . 7 poterat ire quo uolebat. Hugo tenuit ad firmam de Hunfrido . camerario regis . 7 reddebat .xxx. solidos . 7 adhuc reddit tantundem. Haec terra fuit tainland T.R.E. sed postea conuersa . est in Reueland . 7 ideo dicunt legati regis . quod ipsa terra 7 census qui inde exit furtim aufert’ regi.

The wording and content (notably the absence of any information about ownership or resources in 1086) make it clear that Yatton was recorded separately only because its changed status had deprived the king’s officers of part of their revenues. Yatton was historically a chapelry of Much Marcle (Youngs 1991: 137), a large manor which belonged to Earl Harold TRE and was centred only a couple of miles away (Herefs. 1:7). A reasonable inference would be that Hwætmann’s hide had been thegnland within Much Marcle, and therefore that Hwætmann had been the earl’s thegn.

There are no circumstances which connect Hwætmann 2 at Yatton with the other Hwætmann on the Dorset coast.


Youngs 1991: Frederic A. Youngs, Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England, II: Northern England, Royal Historical Society Guides and Handbooks 17 (1991)

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