In 1337 Aug 2, Matilda quae fuit uxor Willielmi de Ferrers [Feriers], chivaler (Mathilda, widow of William Ferrars) was granted, by Edward III, (In year 11 of his reign) a Royal licence to crenellate Byr (Bere Barton, Bere Ferrers)
Licence for Matilda late the wife of William de Ferrers, knight, to crenellate her dwelling-place of Byr, co. Devon. By p.s. (CPR)
Matilda quae fuit uxor Willielmi de Ferrers, chivaler ... mansum ... Byr, Devon (Turner and Parker)
Granted at Westminster. Grant by privy seal.
Fortified Manor House with a licence to crenellate granted to Mathilda, widow of William Ferrars in 1337 and to John Ferrers in 1340.
Original source is;
Lyte, H.C. Maxwell (ed), 1895, Calendar of Patent Rolls (1334-38) p. 558 online copy
(In fact, the original source given is usually a transcription/translation
of what are precious medieval documents not readily availably. It should be
noted that these transcription/translations often date to the nineteenth or
early twentieth centuries and that unwitting bias of transcribers may affect
the translation. Care should also be taken to avoid giving modern meaning to
the medieval use of certain stock words and terms. Licentia is best translated as 'freedom to' not 'permission'.)
Significant later sources are;
Emery, Anthony, 2006, Greater Medieval Houses Vol. 3 (Cambridge) p. 695 Higham, R. A., 1988, 'Devon Castles: an annotated list' Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society Vol. 46 p. 146 King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 124n40 Turner, T.H. and Parker, J.H., 1859, Some account of Domestic Architecture in England (Oxford) Vol. 3 part 2 p. 412 online copy
This is not the midlands branch of the Ferrars family, who were nobles, but a biography is not otherwise identified.
More information about licences to crenellate can be found here.
Please do inform Gatehouse if you see any errors, can add information or can otherwise help to improve this resource. Please contact Gatehouse.
Record created by Philip Davis. This record last updated on Sunday, October 4, 2015.