Walter of Tilbury

Chamberlain to Geoffrey of Muschamp

In Curborough, Staffordshire, c.1200

Background & Events from these Books

Priory of St. Thomas the Martyr by Stafford

Between 1161 & 1182: General Privileges & Endowments
"Witnesses: ___ chaplain, Master Robert, Walter de TILLEBERIA, Matthew, canon of Lich[feld]; Robert lord of Horton and many others."

Ref.D938/3, available from Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archive Service, Staffordshire Record Office

A History of the County of Stafford: Volume 14: Lichfield (published 1990) pages 229-37

Townships: Curborough and Elmshurst
"An estate which formed the endowment of Curborough prebend in Lichfield cathedral was centred on a house north of the later Field House. The prebend may have been created in the mid 12th century, and in 1200 land in Curborough was held by Walter de Tilbury, a chamberlain of Bishop Muschamp and possibly prebendary of Curborough. (fn. 86)

By 1415 the estate was known as Curborough Turvile, evidently after Philip de Turvill, prebendary of Curborough 1309–37; (fn. 87) by the early 17th century the name had been corrupted to Darvell or Darvile. (fn. 88)"

(86) V.C.H. Staffs. iii. 141; Cur. Reg. R. i. 188; S.H.C. 1924, pp. 239–40.
(87) Le Neve, Fasti, 1300–1541, Coventry and Lichfield, 27–8; S.H.C. xvii. 54.
(88) S.H.C. xvi. 208; S.H.C. N.S. iii. 57.

Text from the Victory County History, British History Online

English Episcopal Acta, 1998: Vol. 17, Coventry & Lichfield 1183–1208 (editor: M. J. Franklin) (published for the British Academy by Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-726189-2)

"Geoffrey Muschamp (1198–1208) was a protégé of Geoffrey Plantagenet at York."

History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Staffordshire" by William White, 1834 (printed by R. Leader)

Eccleshall Castle,
"... which has long been the seat of the successive Bishops of Lichfield and Coventry, stands at a short distance from the town, surrounded by a beautiful lawn and pleasure grounds, and embosomed in a thriving grove, said to have been planted by Bishop Hough. ... behind [modern additions] are the remains of a large ivy-mantled tower, which was undoubtedly part of the ancient fortress, which was founded at a very early period, but by whom history does not inform us. About the year 1200, however, we find Bishop Muschamp empowered by a license from King John, "to make a park here, and embattle the castle.""

From Roger of Wendover's "Flowers of History" comprising 'The History of England from the Descent of the Saxons to A.D. 1235, formerly ascribed to Matthew Paris, Vol. II', 1849 (pages 171-2)

A.D. 1198: Of the restoration of the conventual church at Coventry, and the expulsion of the priests
"There was at this time staying at the court of Rome a certain monk of the convent at Coventry named Thomas, who had been with the rest of his brethren expelled, as has been mentioned above, by the before-named bishop, and who was endeavouring by the authority of the supreme pontiff to place again in their former condition the monks who were dispersed in all directions; some of his brethren had died, some had left the court weary and impoverished, he alone persevering in the matter, although on account of his poverty he was often obliged to beg his bread ... One day when the newly created pope Innocent was sitting in council with his cardinals, the aforesaid monk suddenly burst into the midst of them, and held out to the pope a petition setting forth his business; the latter, after he had read it, replied to the hasty monk, "Brother, has not this petition been often, in my sight and hearing, refused by our predecessors Clement and Celestine; and do you think, if you could not over-reach them, to do so with me as if I were foolish?" and added with anger, "Depart, brother, depart, for you certainly wait here to no purpose." But the monk hearing these words, replied with bitter tears, saying, "Holy father, my petition is just, and altogether honourable, and therefore I do not wait in vain: for I await your death, as I have the deaths of your predecessors; for he who succeeds you will hear my petition with effect." But the pope hearing these words, was inexpressibly astonished, and turning to his cardinals who sat near him, said, "Heard ye what this devil said? - 'I await,' says he, 'your death, as I have that of your predecessors.'" Then turning to the monk he said, "Brother, by St. Peter, you shall not wait my death here, for your petitio is granted." And immediately before he took any food, he sent commands to Hubert archbishop of Canterbury that immediately on the receipt of his letters, he should go in person to the church of Coventry, expel the priests, and reinstate the monks. The said archbishop, therefore, supported by the high pontiff's authority, removed the before-mentioned priests, and on the 18th January reintroduced the monks in their stead. As the prior of that place had died when the monks were driven into exile, he appointed as prior over them a Norman named Joibert [or Josbert], who, on account of his eminent skill in secular affairs, had received the government of the three priories, of Daventry, Wenlock, and Coventry; he immediately with the advice of the monks set about the election of a bishop, and by common consent the lot fell on Geoffrey de Muschamp."

From "The Annals of Roger de Hoveden comprising The History of England and of Other Countries of Europe from A.D. 732 to A.D. 1201", 1853 (page 420)

A.D. 1198
"In the month of March, in the same year, Hugh de Nunant [or Novant, or Minant], bishop of Coventry, died at Betherlevin, in Normandy, on Good Friday, being the sixth day before the calends of April, and was buried there in the convent of the monks, being succeeded in the bishopric of Coventry by Geoffrey de Muschamp, archdeacon of Cleveland, who was presented thereto by Richard, king of England, and consecrated at Canterbury by Hubert, archbishop of Canterbury."

From "Fasti Eboracenses - Lives of the Archbishops of York" by William Henry Dixon, 1863 (printed by Longman, Green, Longman, and Roberts) (page 281)

Geoffrey de Muschamp,
"... bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, died in [October] 1208, and the chapter of Lichfield fixed upon Gray as his successor, in opposition to the nominee of the monks of Coventry." [their prior Josbert]

(September 2006) (fonts: Technical, Times New Roman)