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 Urse was also involved

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PostSubject: Urse was also involved    Tue Jun 21, 2011 4:55 pm

During the reign of William I, Urse became involved in a dispute with Bishop Wulfstan over the rights of the sheriff in the lands of the diocese.[4] By the time of Domesday Book in 1086, Urse's powers as sheriff had been excluded from the Oswaldslaw, the area of Worcestershire controlled by the bishops of Worcester. Domesday Book records that the Oswaldslaw was regarded as an immunity, exempt from judicial actions by royal officials. Urse complained that this immunity reduced his income, but this did not affect the outcome of his dispute with Wulfstan, who prevailed. Although Wulfstan claimed that the immunity dated from before the Conquest, it actually owed its existence to the ability of the bishop to fill the shire court with his supporters, and thus influence the findings of the court.[37]

Urse was also involved in a dispute between Wulfstan and Evesham Abbey over lands in Worcestershire as, after the Conquest, Urse acquired the lands of Azur, a kinsman of an earlier Bishop of Worcester, Beorhtheah. Azur had originally leased the lands from the diocese, but after Urse confiscated the lands, the sheriff did not return the lands to the bishop, and instead kept them for himself.[38] The Worcester monk Hemming recorded the loss of the lands to Urse in Hemming's Cartulary, a cartulary written about 1095 recording lands and charters belonging to the diocese of Worcester.[39][40] Hemmings' Cartulary mentions not just Azur's lands, but others at Acton Beauchamp, Clopton, and Redmarley as taken from the diocese of Worcester by Urse.[39] After Abbot Æthelwig's death, Urse also acquired lands that Æthelwig had seized through less than legal means, when William I's half-brother Odo of Bayeux, the Bishop of Bayeux, presided at the lawsuit brought to determine the ownership of the lands. Odo gave a number of the disputed estates to Urse during the course of the lawsuit.[41]




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