Combs &c. Research Footnotes for
The Combes Genealogy…
by Josiah H. Combs

Special Copyright Restrictions

Page 186. 1

I have not located 'Cronologica Augustinsis' and I can find no evidence that Edward the Elder was Edward Combs - Edward was Count of Kent before he became king and my guess is that someone has misinterpreted the latin Comes ie: Count. The British Academy has records of charters of Edward the Elder up to 909, but nothing for the rest of his reign up to 924, so, unless Josiah struck gold and found a charter that the academics do not know about, there must be doubts about the 'Carta Eduardi de Cumbe' - could it be that it is not a charter of King Edward the Elder, but of someone else? It looks as though Edward the Elder de Cumbe might have originated with Fred Coombs and became completely garbled in the process - From James L Kendall manuscript: "The following is submitted by Fred Coombs as a fragmentary outline of the Devon family we are tracing.
(30) Eduardi de Cumba(Reign of Edward the Elder, ca.699-925) ...." [note: Edward reigned from 899 not 699].

"Later, in the Sarum Charters, we find Gregory de Cumbe, in 990; this is probably the same terra de Cumbe, later known as Combe, located in South Pool, Colerage Hundred, in Devonshire [DEV, EN]." - In a later paragraph Gregory de Combe is identified as a canon of Sarum - the diocese of Sarum was not formed until c1065, so it is unlikely that there was a 'Sarum Charter' of 990 - see below. I am not sure why this Cumbe is placed in Devon when there is a prebend of Coombe in the Sarum diocese which takes its name from Coombe Bisset, near Salisbury.

"It seems that one of the principal demesnes of Edward the Elder, Cumb, passed on down to one of his descendants, King Harold, and that it was this king's seat. After Hastings it went over to William the Conqueror, thence to William fitz Norman de la Mare (son of a prominent Norman nobleman), who was the founder of one of the COMBS families in England." - Harold was not a 'descendant' of Edward the Elder - he was descended from a Sussex thegn turned pirate whose base was at Bosham, West Sussex, so that it is possible that Coombes, Sussex was a longtime Godwin family possession. Domesday Book shows that it had been held before 1066 by Gyrth - possibly Harold's brother, Gyrth, earl of East Anglia, killed at Hastings in 1066 [from Anglo-Saxon Chronicle]. There is no conclusive evidence that William fitz Norman of Coombes was a ' de la Mare'.

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Page 189. 2:

Sarum is an iron age hill fort in Wiltshire where the Normans built a castle and cathedral - the cathedral dated from about 1075 and was replaced by a new one in the 13th century down by the river where a new city was built - formally the City of New Sarum until 1974, but usually known as Salisbury which was probably the name of a nearby Saxon settlement. I think the date of 990 is suspect as Sarum diocese did not exist then, but there was a canon Gregory -

c1209 - [Elyas de Chivele resigns all his supposed rights over the land of the prebend of Roscumb (Berks) held by the succentor of Sarum] ... Hanc autem resignationem feci apud Rotescamp coram Ricardo decano Sarum, et de J de Merus, et GREGARIO CANONICIS, et ....
Jan 7 1214 - {Ordinance respecting the use of chapter seals] .... In praesentia domini R[oberti] praecentoris, A[lberici] archidiconi Berkscire, A[nastassi] succentoris, R de Sanford, R de Brintone, GREGORII DE CUMBE. Nomina canonicorum qui praesentes fuerint in crastino Epiphaniae quando praedicta constitutio facta fuit ... GREGORIUS DE CUMBA...

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Page 189. 3:

"John de Cumba, Bishop of Clayme [??]" - Could be - PRO SC 7 = Special Collections: Papal Bulls SC 7/56/24 Request to Edward [III.] to take into his favour John (de CUMBA,) abbot of Combe, of whom the pope has made provision to the see of Cloyne. Gratie divine . . . Avignon. 4 Id. Aug., 17 John [XXII.] 1333 Aug. 10.

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Page 189. 4:

"Dominus Peter de Cumbe, Canon of Sarum" - From CHARTERS &c... BY THE LATE REV. W RICH JONES -
Aug 1238 - [Agreement respecting certain amercements in the hundreds of Sherborne and Beaminster, between the bishop of Sarum and the abbot of Sherborne] .... His testibus ... PETRO DE CUMBE, et aliis, Datum apud Syreburne ....
c1240-1245 - [Exchange with the bishop of land at Potterne] ... His testibus .... PETRO DE CUMBE ...
16 Aug 1242 - [Confirmation of the charter of Sir Barthol. de Turberville respecting his grant of tithes to Charminster, and of the foundation of a private chapel at Winterburne Turberville] .... His testibus .... P. DE CUMBE ... canonicics Sarum. Dat apud Poterne.
c1243 - [Confirmation by bishop Bingham of a grant by H. de Bohun earl of Hereford and Essex of the tithes of Wilsford to the prior of Farleigh, saving a pension to the hospital of St Nicholas at Salisbury] .... His testibus ... dominis PETRO DE CUMBE ... canonicis Sarum ...
May 1 1245 - [Agrrement in view of the possible future annulling of the above ordinance (Appropriation of the churches of Fleet, Stourpaine and Burstock)] .... His testibus et praesentibus ... PETRO DE CUMBE ... apud Novas Sarum
May 9 1246 - [Foundation of the hospital at Easton Royal] ... his testibus ... WILLELMO ET PETRO DE CUMBE, clericis ... dat anno domini MCCXLV in octabis Dionisii.

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Page 189. 5:

See last record above and -
c1220 - [Profession of canonical obedience from the prior of the hospital of St John at Marlborough to the bishop of Sarum and the prebendary of Blewbury] ... His testibus .... W. DE CUMBE, ejusdem ecclesiae vicariis ....
Feb 17 1236 - [Grant by bishop Bingham of amercements, &c, to the fabric fund of the cathedral, which had been granted to the bishop of Sarum by king Henry 111] ... Et in hujus concessionis majoris certidudinem, die Veneris proxima ante Cathedrum Sancti Petri, pontificatus nostri anno viii .... tunc idem praesentibus .... dominis WILL. DE CUMBE, Elia Pidel, ejusdem ecclesiae canonoricis. Dat apud Poterne ....
Feb 18 1238 - [Confirmation by Henry 111 of the preceding grant] ..." Tunc ibidem praesentibus .... DOMINIS WILLELMO DE POTERNE CUMBE (sic) .... Dat apud Merleberge ....
Jan 12 1240 - [Acknowledgement by Roger de Studley of his obligations to the church of Calne as his parish church] .... His testibus ... WILLELMO DE CUMBE ....
May 9 1246 - [Foundation of the hospital at Easton Royal] ... his testibus ... WILLELMO ET PETRO DE CUMBE, clericis ... dat anno domini MCCXLV in octabis Dionisii.

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Page 189. 6:

Could be connected with the following although I think that this refers to John Combe & the prior of Bradeleigh & Richard le Heyr - this John Combe is traceable back to the Fittleton Combes and there is nothing to identify him as the prior -
from INQUISITIONS AND ASSESSMENTS RELATING TO FEUDAL AIDS, VOLUME 4, STAFFORD - WORCESTER WILTSHIRE 1428 - JOHANNES COMBE, PRIOR DE BRADELEGH, et Ricardus le Heyr, tenent immediate in dominico suo ut de feodo certa terras et tenemente in Tudeworthe, que nuper fuerunt Anastasie, que fuit uxor Ricardi de Combe, unde Johannes Combe tenet ix partem, per servicium di. f. m.

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Page 189. 7:

This looks like John Combe of Imber, Crewkerne and Exeter

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Page 189. 8:

The Anglo Saxon Chronicle gives Odo, bishop of Bayeux & earl of Kent as half-brother of the Conqueror - looks like another example of confusing Comes = Count/Earl as a family name.

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Page 189. 9:

I have two Henries from Patent Rolls - 1321 Jan 20 Westminster Commission to Ralph de Cammoys and Nicholas atte Hall to deliver the gaol of his castle of Odyham of John de Cokefeld, Henry de Coumbe and John his brother, Stephen de Istelworth and Hugh le Smale, prisoners for the death of Matthew de Suthwey at Odiham, co. Southampton.By K. 1345 Jan 20 Westminster License for the alienation in mortmain to the prior and convent of Norwich, in satisfaction of 6 marks of the 20l. yearly of land and rent which they had the licence of Edward II to acquire of the following:- ..... by John de Brish, clerk, and Henry de Combes, a messuage in the same town [Norwich]

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Page 189. 10:

Probably not relevant to Combes story - Combe Martin seems to be source of one of the Combes myths.

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Page 189. 11:

There are many references to Walters in the Patent Rolls -

1320 Feb 23 Westminster The like [protection, with clause volumnus, until Easter] for the undermentioned persons going with the king's brother [beyond the seas on the king's service] .....Walter de Coumbe .....
1320 March 25 Eltham The like letters [protection until Michaelmas] for the under-mentioned persons going with Edmund de Wodestok, viz:- .....Walter de Coumbe .....
1322 Jan 7 Westminster The like [protection] for the following going with the said earl [Edmund, earl of Kent], viz:- ..... Walter de Combe .....
1324 Mar 26 Westminster The like [protection] for the following, going with the said Edmund [earl of Kent], viz:- ..... Walter de Coumbe .....
1345 July 6 Reading Pardon to John, son of John Reyngod, for the death of Walter, son of Roger atte Combe, as it appears by the record of William de Notton and Robert de Teye, justices appointed to deliver Maidenstan gaol, that he killed him in self defence.
1346 June 6 Porchester Appointment of Thomas de Wodeweston, king's clerk, to hold the office of chief chamberlain of the exchequer of Dublin, during good behaviour, with the usual wages and fees. Mandate to the treasurer and barons of the said exchequer to admit him. Mandate to Walter de Combe to deliver him the office with the rolls, memoranda and other things relating to it.
1350 June 23 Westminster The like [commission of oyer and terminer] to William de Shareshull, Gerard de Lyle, Thomas de la Ryver and William de Kynebel, on complaint by William de Cantilupo that Walter de Coumbe, Walter Simond ..... and others drove away fourteen of his oxen and carried away his goods at Aumbresbury, co. Wilts. For 20s. to be paid to the king
1351 Aug 1 Windsor Grant, during pleasure, to William son of Thomas Laweles, for good service long rendered in the receipt of the exchequer of Dublin, of the office of chief chamberlain of that exchequer, with the usual fees; on testimony of Thomas de Rokeby, justiciary of Ireland, that Walter de Combe, who lately held the office of the king's grant, is laid up with so great and grievous an infirmity that he is not able to labour further in any office.
1360 July 7 Westminster The like [writ of aid for one year], for Walter de Coumbe and Adam de Folby, charged by the said Edmund [king's son Edmund de Langele] to take the same [carpenters, masons, hewers of stone, tilers, roofers and other labourers] for the works of his houses in London and elsewhere.
1376 Nov 10 Westminster Licence, for 20 marks paid to the king by John de Pyriton, Walter de Coumbe, John de Salesbury, Richard Lorymer, Richard in le Wych and Richard Lounteley, for the alienation in mortmain by them of fourteen messuages, 3 acres of land, 12 acres of meadow, 40s. of rent and a moiety of a messuage in Leomynistre, Henore, Stretford and Eton by Leomynistre, to a chaplain to celebrate divine service daily in the chapel of St. Mary in Leomynistre church according to the ordinance of them and their heirs.

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Page 189. 12:

I have information on the Fittleton Combes from 1202 but Adam does not feature in it - there was an Adam in Sussex in the 13th century.

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Page 189. 13:

There was a John de Cumbe, lord of the manor of Fittleton, but not in 1250.

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Page 189. 14:

This is Richard, sometime sheriff of Wiltshire, who held Combe by Enford, not Coombe Bisset, which is at least 35 miles south of Castle Combe. My theory is that these early researchers opted for Coombe Bisset and Castle Combe because they are the only Wiltshire 'Combes' to appear in most gazetteers.

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Page 190. 15:

Richard the sheriff's son - another lord of the manor

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(29) Adam de Pyncombe(holdings in Somerset and Devon) ca.925-960
(28) Ricardus de Marisco de Cumba, ca. 960-1000
(27) Ralf de Pomerai de Comba (vast land holdings) ca. 1000-1020
(26) Ralf de Pomerai de Cumba de Haccombe, ca. 1016-1060 Rafe de Combe de Bridstone, 1040
(25) Richard de Cumba, Lord of Haccombe, living 1128
(24) ------- de Cumba, filia de Richard, next above, living 1100-1115
(25)* Baron Martyn de Tours, Lord of Combe-Martyn, ca. 1140-116? [cut off]
(24) Robert de Tours, 2d Lord of Combe-Martyn,ca.1030-1140; md. filia de Richard, Lord of Haccombe, 2d above.
(23) Martin de Combe, 1st Lord of Combe, of Combe-Martin, ca 1140-116? [cut off]
(18) Henri de Combe de Combe-Martin, ca. 1327-1376
(12) Joseph Combe, Lord of Combe, Combe-Martin, living 1520
(11) Guileman Co'mes, Lord of Combe, Combe-Martin, living 1556
(10) Richard Coomes, Lord of Combe, Combe-Martin, d. Apr.7, 1619; Sons Joseph; Austin; John; William. Joseph succeeded; the other three to Virginia. Generation 10 above becomes generation 12 in my scheme. *Came with William the Conqueror, granted land in Devonshire and made Lord of Combe-Martin; founder of the Martin Family. See Colonial Families of the United States."

My earliest Combe record is of the grant of the manor of Buttermere, Wilts to Walter de Cumbe by St Swithun's priory in 1110. Buttermere adjoins the parish of Combe, Hants/later Berks and St Swithun's priory was the predecessor of Winchester cathedral in Hampshire. The source for this is Victoria County History of Wiltshire, which says it comes from Regesta Regum Anglo-Normannorum, published in 1998. This is still in print but at a price of £115. So far I have not found a library holding a copy, which is probably not surprising at that price - perhaps American libraries are wealthier.

David Vidler

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This electronic edition of Combs, A Study in Comparative Philology and Genealogy, by Josiah H. Combs, Ph.D., University of Paris, copyrighted 1976 by Norris K. Combs, published by Norris K. Combs, Pensacola, Florida, 1976, reprinted 1979, and electronically reprinted by the Combs &c. Research Group in 1999, has been authorized by copyright holder Norris K. Combs for the free use of those engaged in non-commercial genealogical research only. Permission is freely granted to Hot Link to this site; however, copying and/or distribution of this work is strictly prohibited.

The index and annotated footnotes have been provided by the Combs &c Research Group and researchers are permitted to copy and distribute only the latter, and only for non-commercial genealogical research. Any and all commercial use is strictly prohibited.
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