Family Records for the Essex Branch

Our records for the De Liston family start when Godfrey The Chamberlain married  Avicia De Liston daughter of Robert De Liston this record comes from the  matters pertaining the widows and children in the time of Henry II.

Liston Overhall was already held by this tenure in 1185, when Avicia de Lyston, widow of Godfrey the Chamberlain, and daughter of Robert de Lyston, with a son who was of age, was bound, as its holder, “facere canestellas ad summonicionem ad festum regis.”

An earlier record of a Godfrey the Chamberlain can be found in the North when he was witness to a charter by William brother of Malcolm King of The Scots.

They had one confirmed son.

Others may include:

2/  Roger De Lyston also in Scotland between 1165 and 1172 witnessing charters for the Bishop of St Andrews.

3/ Ranulph Fitz Godfrey The Chamberlain who was in the household of Henry The Younger and Richard I, he knew William Marshall who funded him to take the Cross with Richard I on the 3rd Crusade.  He died at the Siege of Acre in 1191 as described in the Annals of Roger De Hoveden. He was also a witness to a charter when Richard I was in Rouen in 1190 and he appears in the history of William Marshall.

Roger De Hoveden Ref… 
Rouen 28 June 1190  ( trans 160 ) Ref….
Charters Witnessed
The History of William Marshall Ref…

4/ Geoffrey who purchased land from William son of Agnes in Stansfeld, Suffolk in the time of Richard I.
Feet of fines No. 23

In 1212 Johannes De Listone was returned per serjanterium faciendi canastellos.

The Red Book also records that before 1212 Baldwin De Butin, Earle of Albemarle is recorded as the Tenant of Liston. This will be Baldwin of Bethune a crusader and close companion of Richard I.  He married Hawise of Aumale to become Count of Aumale.


In 1220 William De Gatesden holds the manor of Liston by one pound of Frankinscence for the Kings Chapel.  William De Gatesden also held land in Leighton by Sergeancy of providing two falcons for the King.  This is Leighton in Bedfordshire not related to Liston in Essex.




In 1224 John Son of Adam De Alliston sells land at Stansfeld, Suffolk
Feet of fines No. 144 page 23 Stansfeld Suffolk is about a 5 miles from Liston in Essex.


1235 Feet of Fines Essex

522. Eas. Geoffrey de Liston, pl. Robert de Sancto Claro, impedient. Aclvowson of the church of Liston with appurts. Assize of last presentation. Impedient granted that pl. shall first present his clerk to the said church without contradiction. Pl. granted that when the said church shall happen to be vacant, impedient or his heirs shall present his (or their) clerk without contradiction; and after the decease of that clerk, pl. and impeclient and their heirs shall present alternately from clerk to clerk and from heir to heir.
In the Time of Henry III, Godfrey De Liston has a close relationship with the King as bailiff of Cookham, Forrestier around Windsor and supplies for Westminster. From 1251 on.

553. Trin. Geoffrey de Liston, pl. Roger Noel and Cristiana his wife, impedients. 6s. of rent with appurts. in Torendon. Plea of warranty of charter. Pl. to hold of impedients and the heirs of Cristiana by the yearly rent of rd. at Easter, s.f.s. Cons., 50s. sterling.

26/370 (06 May 1242)
Essex. From William de Blavigny , Simon and Robert, his brothers, for the same, 40 m., by the pledge of Otto son of William and William son of Richard of Elmstead, Robert de Setvauns, Richard de Tany, Robert de Brus, Phillip of Sparsholt , Phillip de Cantilupe, Simon, son of Simon of Brasted , parson of Dunmow , Godfrey of Liston , John de Blendok’ , Gilbert of Bumpstead and Colin Fucher .

This one is interesting as it shows that Godfrey De Liston knew Robert De Brus in 1242 , the Liston family also has a branch in Scotland.

By 1248 Godfrey has been granted use of the manor of Kempton which had been held by Hubert De Burgh who was married to King Johns Widow Isabella Countess of Gloucester.

Several lands are committed to Godfrey from 1249  where it had been forfeited by its previous holders.  It seems Godfrey was quite involved with the management of the Kings estate. He is committed the land of John of Barkham and  John de Bendenges both of whom are outlawed.  John of Barkhams land is returned to him a few years later.

In 1250 Godfrey is ordered to take the village of Windsor into the Kings hand, in the same year he is also mentioned as bailiff of the seven hundreds of Cookham and Bray.

Also in 1250 Godfrey of Liston was ordered to have made “in the hall of the Castle of Windsor, at the middle of the table, a royal seat on which he was to have painted the image of a king holding a sceptre in his hand, so that that seat be decently adorned with gold painting.” 36 The cost of making this seat and painting the King’s image on it is given in Godfrey’s account on the Pipe Roll for 1252-3 as £11 9s. 6d. ref….

There are several feet of fine references around 1251 regarding the corn of the Kings manors of Cookham and Bray.  This is interesting because Godfrey also has the Sergeancy of carrying the flour from his Manor in Witham, Essex as well as the Grand Sergeancy at Liston.  Witham also has the large Cressing barns built in the 1200’s by the Knights Templar to keep corn and barley.

1128. Same date. Robert, son of Geoffrey le Wodeward , dem. Arnald, son of Emma de Gosfeld, and Angnet’ (Agn’) his wife, ten. 2 messuages, 22 acres of land, 1 acre of meadow, and 3 acres of wood with appurts. in Hengham Sibill and Gosfeld. Assize of mort d’a. Ten. acknowledged the premises to be right of dem .. and rendered them to him. Dem . granted to ten. one of the said messuages with appurts. and a third part of the said land, meadow, and wood with appurts .. to wit, that messuage which lies between the land of Otho Fitz William and the land of Geoffrey de Liston, and that third part which everywhere lies towards the sun ; to hold to ten. all the life of Agn’ by the services appertaining thereto. If the said Emma die in the life time of Agn’, the said messuage which remains to ten. by this Fine, shall on her death revert to dem. Moreover dem. at the petition of ten. quitclaimed to Otho Fitz William all his right in 12 acres of land with appurts. in Hengham Sybill (Sible Hedingham),  to wit, those which ·w alter, brother of dem., sometime held in the same town ; and Otho gave to dem. 5 marks of silver. Cons .. 20s. sterling.

Ref Essex Feet Of Fines …

1258 Godfrey De Liston appears before the Jurors


Godfrey was the Kings Knight serving Henry III who as he Henry III got older his ambitions increased which meant they had to be funded.  The main method for raising the money was a form of taxation.  The Kings men started to impose extra financial burdens on the farmers and serfs.  As these additional burdens started to be felt, discontent started spreading through the population leading to Jury hearings against the Kings men.  Godfrey  was one of those that appeared before the Jury.

The Hundred of Woking

B77. They also say that Godfrey of Liston, the forest bailiff of Windsor, took 2 shillings per cartload as a can-toll where formerly it was accustomed to give but 4 pence[.]

The Hundred of Effingham

B127.(Essex) A jury determined that Godfrey of Liston unjustly and by means of extortion took 40 shillings from Juliana of Burstow. So he [is] in mercy and he shall return the money to Juliana.

B128. The jurors present that the same Godfrey of Liston unjustly raised a new custom [namely that one was] to give 2 pence for each pig to pannage in the wood of Frith, whereas previously one was accustomed to give but only one pence. They also say that Richard Batabye unjustly raised another new custom, taking for each beast a half penny for pannage and pasture in the wood of Frith, whereas it was never customary to give for that purpose. So it is to be discussed. They also say that Godfrey of Liston, James le Glover of Windsor and Henry of Coldboume, while they ought to enclose a purpresture, as they were accustomed to in the vert of Windsor, which they held at farm from the king, [instead] they demised the purpresture and freely opened it on this occasion so as to allow the men of the county’s beasts to enter. Then they impounded the beasts at their own will and seized them for imparking to the nuisance of the entire country. So it is to be discussed.

Ref ….

Much of the discontent during the second Barons war was directed at the Lusignan family who had lost their lands in France and had been invited to England by Henry III.  It should be noted that Godfrey’s cousin Thomas De Liston was clerk to William De Valence otherwise known as Guillame De Lusignan who was the half brother of Henry III.


1267 Godfrey De Liston dies
In 1267 Godfrey de Liston died holding land in Leyton of Sir Hugh de Neville. (fn. 24) He was succeeded by his son and heir, John (d. 1303), who was in turn succeeded by his son, Sir John de Liston (d. 1332). (fn. 25) Before the latter’s death part of his property in Leyton passed into the hands of Edmund Basset and Roger Samekyn, who had licence in 1331 to alienate to the abbey a messuage and 126 a. of land of the clear yearly value of 38s. 7d. (fn. 26) Stratford also acquired in 1329 or 1330 from Sir John de Liston a plot in Leytonstone called ‘Jonesthyng of Liston’, worth £10 yearly. (fn. 27) Alfred de Vere, earl of Oxford, appears to have been the abbot’s tenant in 1401, but the manor had apparently reverted to demesne by 1428. (fn. 28) At the Dissolution much of the demesne land was shared by nine tenants, among them Morgan Wolfe, the remainder, with the manorhouse and buildings, rectory and tithes, being leased to Thomas Campion. (fn. 29) A year before Godfreys death his Windsor estates went to Ebal De Mont possibly a relation of Emery De Montibus who was knighted at the instance of Guy de Lusignan in 1263 and Stephen de Montibus, a clerk of Queen Eleanor of Castile in 1282. 


Inquisitions Post Mortem
C. Hen. III. File 34. (1.)
Godfrey de Liston.
Writ, 18 April, 51 Hen. III.
John, his son, aged 30, is his heir.
Inq. St. Mark’s day.
Listone manor, held of the king in chief by service of making wafers (vafras) when the king wears the crown, at the king’s cost.
Borle town. 30a. land held of the earl of Albemarle (Alba Mar’) rendering 1 (pair ?) of gilt spurs.
Corsfeld. A messuage, 60a. land, 40a. wood, 5a. meadow and a windmill held of the earl of Oxford by service of ¼ knight’s fee; and land and rent worth 50s. held at farm of the fee of William de Hodingg and Master Richard de Corsfeld.
Inq. Monday after Palm Sunday.
Leitone. Land (unspecified) held of Sir Hugh de Nevill in chief by service of 1 gilt spur or 6d. (or ? 1 (pair) of gilt spurs).
C. Hen. III. File 34. (2.)


Ref ….

Omnibus Christi fidelibus presens scriptum visuris vel audituris Walterus Morell[] salutem in Domino Noveritis me remisisse et quietum clamasse pro me et heredibus meis imperpetuum fratri Therrico de Nussa priori hospitalis Ierusalem in Anglia et eiusdem domus fratribus totum ius et clameum quod habui vel habere potui in illo campo cum pertinentiis qui vocatur Alrettesfeld[] qui iacet ante portam Hugonis filii Godardi Et quoniam volo quod hec mea remissio et quieta clamacio stabilis et inconcussa perseverent imperpetuum sigilli mei munimine presens scriptum dignum duxi roborandum Hiis testibus domino Simone de Oddewelle Godefrido de Lystun[] Gilberto de Hautstede Roberto de Chelmeshoo Ricardo de Othulveshoo Rogero de Besevile Alano Moraunt Willelmo de Bumstede Willelmo Ioye Waltero de Bellocampo clerico et multis aliis
Source Fulltext: Cartulary of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem. M. Gervers. Records of Social and Economic History, New Series 6. British Academy. Oxford University Press. Oxford. 1982.

Cartulary of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem Gestingthorpe Essex

Cartulary Title: Cartulary of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem [Little Maplestead]

Sciant presentes et futuri quod ego Thomas filius Othonis miles dedi concessi et hac presenti carta mea confirmavi Willelmo Lundreys pro homagio et laudabili servicio suo totum tenementum quod Paganus Cristemasse quondam tenuit in villa de Gestingthorpe scilicet in mesuagiis terris pratis pasturis viis semitis sepibus fossatis liberis exitibus et introitibus et omnibus aliis pertinentiis dicto tenemento spectantibus habendum et tenendum de me et heredibus meis predicto Willelmo et heredibus suis vel cuicumque dictum tenementum cum dictis pertinentiis dare vendere legare vel assignare voluerit et quandocumque voluerit libere quiete integre imperpetuum et hereditarie exceptis domibus religionis et Iudaismo reddendo inde annuatim michi et heredibus meis unum par calcariorum deauratorum vel sex denarios ad Pascha pro omnibus serviciis auxiliis consuetudinibus sectis omnium curiarum et aliis demandis salvis michi et heredibus meis duabus sectis curie mee per annum videlicet una ad Pascha et alia ad festum sancti Michaelis et servicio domini regis videlicet quantum pertinet ad tantum tenementum Et ego predictus Thomas et heredes mei vel mei assignati warantizabimus acquietabimus et defendemus dictum tenementum cum dictis pertinentiis predicto Willelmo et heredibus suis vel suis [assignatis] per predictum servicium contra omnes gentes imperpetuum In cuius rei testimonium huic carte sigillum meum apposui Hiis testibus dominis Roberto de Seint Germayn[] Gilberto Dyne Warino Dyne Roberto Dyne Petro de Becking[] Iohanne de Lystun[] Luce Morel[] Roberto de Chelmeshoo Ricardo de Othulvesho Hugone filio Rogeri Thoma de Cruce Willelmo de Leffeldewelle Nicholao clerico Iohanne le Waleys Hugone Ioy Iohanne page et aliis

Johannes De Lystun 1270 to 1280 Ref….

Sciant presentes et futuri quod ego Gilbertus Pecche dedi concessi et hac presenti carta mea confirmavi domino Hugoni Golston[] pro homagio et servicio suo corpora Reginaldi Edrich[] et Asseline de Cure de Gestingthorpe nativorum meorum cum tota sequela de eis procreata et procreanda cum omnibus bonis suis et catallis mobilibus et immobilibus adeptis et adipiscendis una cum toto tenemento eorundem quod de me tenuerunt in villenagio in predicta villa de Gestingthorpe cum omnibus suis pertinentiis habenda et tenenda corpora predictorum Reginaldi et Asseline cum tota sequela et tenemento suo predictis sicut predictum est de me et heredibus meis et assignatis meis predicto Hugoni et heredibus suis et suis assignatis vel cuicumque seu quandocumque dicta corpora cum toto predicto tenemento et eorum pertinentiis dare vendere vel aliquo modo assignare voluerint libere quiete bene et in pace reddendo inde annuatim michi et heredibus meis unum clavum gariofili ad Pascha pro omnibus serviciis consuetudinibus sectis curiarum et aliis demandis Et ego predictus Gilbertus Pecche et heredes mei warantizabimus acquietabimus et defendemus corpora predictorum Reginaldi et Asseline cum tota sequela sua et toto tenemento sicut predictum est cum omnibus suis pertinentiis per predictum servicium contra omnes gentes imperpetuum In cuius rei testimonium presenti carte sigillum meum appossui Hiis testibus dominis Radulpho de Pebenechs Thoma de Bayhouse Ada de Nortest Iohanne de Lystun[] militibus Reginaldo de Selverlehe Iohanne de Ry Willelmo le botiller Roberto de Chelmesho Nicholao de Gestingthorpe clerico et Edmundo de Lydgate clerico et aliis

1285 to 1295 Johannes De Lystun Getingthorpe (Gestingthorpe, Essex)

Ref ….

Windsor Castle Ref…

Fine Rolls of Henry III Ref…

Calendar of the liberate rolls

Godfrey holds Leyton manor of Sir Hugh De Neville and  has a son John who dies in 1303 , he in turn has a son called John who inherits.

In Suffolk Thomas De Liston is Clerk to The Earl of Pembroke, William De Valence.
Public record office

Sir William De Valence was half brother to Henry III he married Joan De Munchensi daughter of Waren De Munchensi Lord of Swanscombe and Joan Marshall one of the 5 daughters of William Marshall 1st Earl of Pembroke. Sir William De Valence died in 1296 and came to England in 1247 so the following are in that period.
It was the previous Earl of Pembroke that commissioned the writing of The History of William Marshall. (Later married into the De Vere family who got Swancombe).

A. 3530. Grant by Henry son of William de Elmeswall’, to Thomas son of Nigel de Liston, clerk, Alice his wife, and John and Simon their sons, for 10 mares, of land called ‘Varelond’ in Meleford parish, between land of Sir William de Valencia and the road from Henry’s house to the tigh of Kentewalle called ‘Haylokestye.’ Witnesses:—John de Curmavile, John Peytem’, and others (named). Portion of seal.

A. 3469. Release by Alice, late the wife of ‘Thomas, son of Nigel de Liston, clerk to Sir William de Valence, Earl of Pembroke, of ‘all her right in the lands and tenements which he has by demise of the said Thomas, in Melleford. Witnesses :—Simon de Frestone, ,Sampson de Batesford, and others (named). Seal

A. 3781. Grant by Henry son of William de Elmeswelle, to Thomas son of Nigel de Liston, clerk, for 10 marks, of land called ‘Varelond’ in Meleford parish, between Sir William de Valencia’s land and the road from Melford church to Kentewall tigh called ‘Haylokestye.’ Witnesses: —Sir John de Curmanvile, John Poytevin, and others (named). Portion of seal.


Alice daughter of Thomas De Liston
Thomas Josselyn who was ward of Thomas De Stratton living 1285 married Alice daughter of Thomas Liston

The peerage of Ireland : or, A genealogical history of the present nobility of that kingdom.

The arms of Thomas are given as Vert Ten Torteauxes ( Edward I )
another version here

William De Harcourt Lord of Ayliston  married Alice De Zouche

Ref ….

1306 Letters of Protection Scotland


Reginald de Wasteneys, William de Brustowe, John
de Houglon, Richard de Thurston, Henry Crok, Hugh
le Keu of Ottele, Thomas de Rokesle, William
Paynel [no. 1582], William de Saunford, William
Sauvage, all with the earl of Surrey; John de
Moubray, Philip de Verly [no. 1594]; Thomas de
Botycumbe with Thomas de Umfravill; James de
Dalilegh, clerk, staying in Scotland, duplicate;
Matthew de Osgodeby, William de Fen, both with
Robert de Scales; William de Boleton with John de
Mubray; John Pecche with the earl of Arundel
[no. 1593]; William de Brewosa, Richard de
Chastillum, Roger de Cobeham, John Tigre, John de
Haudlo, all with Hugh le Despenser; Robert de
Segre, clerk, John le Treour, John Lesquilier, Adam
le Chaundeler, all with the prince of Wales; Philip
la Zusche, John de Chidiok, Amauri la Zusche,
William la Zusche, John de Lyston, all with Alan la
Zusche in company of Thomas, earl of Lancaster;
Alan la Zusche with Thomas, earl of Lancaster
[no. 1594], John Cam, Richard de Welles, John de
Mortuo Mari, Richard de Sutton, William le Surreys
[sic], chaplain, Owen de Monte Gomeri [no. 1594],
Hugh Godard, Robert Sturmy, Walter de Hurtesleye,
Roger son of Roger de Mortuo Mari, Richard de
Burnhope, Adam le Gayt, Roger de Burleye, Richard
de Sholle, all with Roger de Mortuo Mari; Robert de
Tony with the earl of Hereford and Essex.
[All Easter.] [c 67/16, m. Sl.

Ref …

Calendar of Patent Rolls 1310 Edward II
May 23rd Kennington
Commission of oyer and terminer to John de Insula, Hugh de Louthre Kenniiigton. and Thomas de Fissheburne, touching an appeal in the county of Northumberland, by Agnes late the wife of Robert le Flemmeug of Newcastle- upon-Tyne against Guy de Welle and William de Sudbury for the death of her husband.

The like to Hervey do Staunton and John de Mutford, touching the persons who, together with Walter son of Humphrey de Pentelowe, Peter le Someter, Otto parson of the church of Lyston, John de Lyston, Alan son of Richard ‘ in the Lane,’ Robert Heved of Lyston, Adam Capel and William de Gritton, assaulted Geoffrey de Hoo at Sudbury, co. Suffolk. By p.s.

The like to the same justices, touching an assault by the same persons on Nicholas de Driffeld, parson of the church of Foxherde, at Sudbury, co.

The like to the same justices, touching an assault by the same persons on William de Socemere at Sudbury, co. Suffolk.


William Alston of Stisted
Ref Harts MSS No 1390 British Museum (Vide Burke).
The family of Alston is upon record so early as the reign of Edward I (1272-1307), when “William Alston of Stisted in Essex, for want of warranty of Burkscraft in Stisted did grant or confirm to John de Carpenter of Naylinghurst, so much of the better land in Stisted except his mansion house there”. In that time of Edward III, Hugh Alston bore for arms, azure ten stars or four, three, two and one, which was long before coat armour was granted by patent: Henry and Robert Alston also mentioned in the Botule (?) Hundredorum as having land at Fulbourn Cambridgeshire.

1296 Lyston Johannes De, enrolled pursuant to the ordinance for the defence of the sea coast as a knight holding lands in the county of Essex , but unfit for service
Ref …….

5 Edw. II. 20 May

Grant by Robert de Ayliston, vicar of Lodington, to John and Agnes le Mey, of Halsteyde, of half a messuage and land at Wateberu

Ref ….

In 1301 Johannes De Listone summoned from the counties of Essex and Hertford to perform military service in person against the Scots.
Muster at Berwick upon Tweed on the Nativity of St John the Baptist 24 June.

Ref ……

In 1314 Johannes De Listone 24 October to January 1315 claimed expenses for attendance at Parliament four shillings each per diem, tested at Westminster 9th March 1315.

Edward II

A. 11335. Chirograph, indented, witnessing that whereas the manor of Beauchamp Williame is held of Robert de Veer, earl of Oxford (Oxeneford) by homage and fealty and by the services of two knight’s fees; of which manor Maud, late the wife of John Bottetourte, has acknowledged herself by this indenture, to hold of the said earl the eight parts of the said manor by the services beforenamed, which to the eight parts belong; and for the which eight parts John Botetourte, husband of the said Maud, did homage to the said earl in her right; and the said Robert de Veer, earl of Oxford, after the death of the said John, has acknowledged himself to have received fealty of the said Maud together with the services which to the eight parts belong, to wit for four scutages (pur quatre escuages), so that nothing is behind at the making of this indenture, to wit that the said Maud has done fealty as tenant for life of the eight parts of the said manor by fine levied in the king’s court, with remainder to John son of John Botetourte, in tail, as is fully contained in a fine thereof levied in the king’s court.
And the said Robert de Veer, earl of Oxford, has acknowledged himself to hold of the said Maud by reason of the manor of Gestingthorp, which she holds for term of her life, by fine levied, with remainder thereof to John son of John Botetourte, in tail, 82a. land in the towns of Great and Little Gelham, by homage and fealty and by scutage (per escuage), to wit of the eighth part (del ouytisme partie) of a knight’s fee, and by the services of 4s. yearly and two suits of (deux venues a) her court of Gestingthorp, at the courts next after Michaelmas and Easter, to receive the 4s. and do the suits (avenues) by the hand of Thomas de la Pole and his heirs. [And] the said Maud has acknowledged herself to have received the fealty of the said earl and the arrears in full at the making of this indenture. Given under the hand &c. of the said Maud and of the said John her son, and of the said earl respectively. Witnesses: Sir William le fitz Rauf, Sir John de Busser, Sir Thomas de Loveigne, Sir John de Lystone, and others (named). Hengham Castle, 20 March, 19 Edward II. French. ( abt. 1327 )

Ref ….

Calendar of Inquisitions Miscellaneous ( Chancery )

450. Commission to John de Crosseby, Benedict de Cokefeld, and John de Liston. Westminster. 15 May 14 Edward II. [1321.] By petition of the Council. Essex. Inquisition before the said John and John. Stratford. Monday after the octave of Trinity. Divers priors of Bykenacre alienated lands of the priory in Esthanyngfeld, Wodeham Mortumer, Wodeham Ferers, Danwebery, Nortone, Steple, and Mailond. Cf. Close Roll Calendar, pp. 386-388. C. Inq. Misc. File 85. (11.)

588. Commission to John de- Lyston, John de Dovorr, and Robert de Assheley. Tower of London. 6 April 16 Edward II. [1323.] Inquisition before John le Porter, keeper of lands of rebels in Essex. Stratford Langethorn. Tuesday after the close of Easter. Possessions of William de la Haye in Grenestede. Inquisition before John de Lystone and Robert de Asshelye. Rumford. Sunday after St. George. Possessions of William de la Haye in Grenestede. Cf. Close Roll Calendar, p. 655. C. Inq. Misc. File 89. (13.)

608. Commission to John de Bousser, John de Liston, and John de Dovere. Knaresburgh. 8 March 16 Edward II. [1323.] Inquisition before the said John de Bousser and John de Lyston, in the presence of the sheriff of Essex. Brentwood. Saturday in Easter week. The abbot and convent of Bylegh demised by writing to Robert atte Lee the manor of Great Perindon for twelve years from Easter 14 Edward II, at a yearly rent of 24/. ; also land which belonged to Peter de Perindon for 7 years at a yearly rent of 20*. By reason of the said Robert being in arrear of rent, and not having maintained the buildings, the abbot, in accordance with the writing, entered the tenements on the feast of St. Andrew last past. C. Inq. Misc. File 90. (5.)

Ref …..

SC 8/204/10159 Inquisition taken at Abingdon before Robert De Ayliston and Robert De Hungerford.

Ref ….

BUCKLAND. Decision of Roger, bishop of Salisbury, in a cause
referred to him by the prior and convent of Wallingford, and Robert
de Ayliston, rector of Buckland, concerning the tithes from the lordship
of John de St. Philberto in Kerswell.

Ref ….

This probably the same Robert de Ayliston who was put forward as Archdeacon of York in the Calendar of documents relating to Scotland 
“The K. requests the Pope to appoint Master Robert de  Aylestone archdeacon of Berkshire , his treasurer to the Bishopric of St Andrews, York.” [Roman Roll, 6 Edw. III. m. 3.]  The Pope declined.


793. Commission to John de Lyston and James de Lamburne. Melbourn. 12 January 18 Edward II. [1325.] Inquisition :—Reylegh. Saturday the morrow of St. Peter’s Chair. Bartholomew de Badelesmere on the day of his forfeiture held of John de Chaunceux and Margery his wife, as of the right of the said Margery, a tenement in Canewedone called ‘ Caldhous ‘ by the yearly service of 4 marks. Cf . Close Roll Calendar, p. 263. C. Inq. Misc. File 96. (16.)

956. Commission to Thomas Gobyon, John de Crosseby and John de Lyston. Westminster. 31 January 1 Edward III. [1327.] By petition of the Council. Inquisition :—Hadleye. Monday in the quinzaine of the Purification. Roger de Estwike and Alice his wife held in fee 12 acres of land in Hadleye together with the custody of the park of that town. Cf. Close Roll Calendar, p. 49. C. Inq. Misc. File 105. (9.)


1326 ( 19 Edward II ) An inquisition in Hertfordshire into the death of John Joce mentions John De Liston who had surrendered to him land at Stanstede Abbots and Hunesdon.  The lands were confiscated when the said John was found to be adhering to Bartholomew de Badlesmere who had allied himself to the Earl of Lancaster against the Despenser family.

Ref …

John De Liston died shortly before 17 October 1332.

In 1330 Beatrix De Liston was a Prioress in Thetford …. and …. She died in 1339

His wife Eleanor is recorded as she makes a charter for Richard and Ellen de Strelleye in 1335.  The seal shows the Liston coat of arms

Seal of Alianor De Lyston

John and Eleanor had a son John and heir John, aged 22 [Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem, vol. 7, no 451]. The younger John died in 1349, leaving a son John who had been born in 1337 [Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem, vol. 9, no 349; vol. 10, no 392], who in turn died in 1359, leaving as heir his uncle William de Liston, aged 30 and more [Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem, vol. 10, nos 473, 551]. In fact William must have been well over 30 years old, as his son and heir Thomas was born around 1341 [Calendar of Inquisitions Post Mortem, vol. 12, no 151].

1342/43 – John Liston and Thomas Liston were both in France with William Bohun, Earl of Northampton fighting the French in Brittany. John served as a banneret for Bohun, a banneret being a knight in charge of a group of other knights.

John and Thomas may have been related to John Hawkwood, they seem to have close associations with De Vere ( Earl of Oxford) fighting together on occasion.
Ref …

Chaucer also had connections to John Hawkwood and it has been speculated that the Knight in Cantebury Tales was based on Hawkwood.  Chaucers Grand daughter by his son Thomas  was later to marry John De La Pole Earl of Suffolk.

We have a Thomas De Listone mentioned in the assessments for contributions to knight the black prince in 1345 …..


774. Eas. and Trin. John, son of John de Liston and Elizabeth daughter of William Carbonel, knight, pl. by William de Elyngham, their guardian. John de Liston, knight, and Maud his wife, def. 140 acres of land, 10 acres of meadow, 20 acres of pasture,
200 acres of wood, 4 acres of alder and 405. rent in Gosfeld PI. and the heirs of their bodies to hold of def. and the heirs of John, rendering 4 marks of silver yearly, in moieties at Easter and Michaelmas,  and doing to the chief lords all services, with reversion to def. and the heirs of John.

This year was the battle of Crecy so it is likely that both John Liston Jnr and Elizabeth Carbonel were minors in the care of William de Elyngham whilst their fathers were on at war.

1351 –One of the Listons married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir William Carbonell, and thereby the Manor of Carbonels passed into the Liston family.    

 D/DL T1/157  Quitclaim from William atte Elmes of Havering and John de Dittone, to Thomas de Boblintone of Rainham and John Hanper of Wennington.  Quitclaim from William atte Elmes of Havering and John de Dittone, to Thomas de Boblintone of Rainham and John Hanper of Wennington.
Level: Item
Dates of creation Feb. 1352
Scope and content Quitclaim from William atte Elmes of Havering and John de Dittone, son of Benedict de Dittone of Aveley, to Thomas de Boblintone of Rainham and John Hanper of Wennington, chaplain, of a messauge with 150 acres of land, 30 of pasture,10 of meadow 3 of wood, and 10s. 11d. one cock and 2 hens rent, which grantors acquired of John, son of Robert de Bolintone of Rainham, in Aveley, and which were formerly of Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of Thomas le Bret.


Witnesses: Benedict de Dittone; Richard de Suttons; William de Lystone; John de Waltonee; John Baudechoun; John atte More of Writtle; Thomas le Yonge; William de Udenne; John atte More of Aveley: Robert Abbot; Richard Wybregge.

Ref ….


472 John Son Of John De Liston

This inquisition, described thus in the Calendar printed in 1808, cannot he found. The word ‘deest.’ printed on the line below should perhaps have been printed against this entry. The inquisition is not noticed in the old Tower list of inquisitions for Essex, which seems to shew that it was missing long before the year 1808.

Writ not enrolled [20 March, 33 Edward III.] (fn. 7)

1360 Inq. taken at Branketre, 3 April, 33 Edward III.Liston. The manor (extent given, including the moiety of a water-mill), with a moiety of the advowson of the church, held of the king in chief by service of serving the king with wafers at his coronation.
He died about the feast of the Conversion of St. Paul, to wit, 25 January last, as the jury understand from the report of John Blamestr’, who was in his company when he died in Normandy. William de Liston, his uncle on his father’s side, aged 30 years and more, is his heir.

The probability is that John was with Edward III at the seige of Rheims where he lost his life.  Edward III withdraw shortly afterwards.

E. Enrolments &c. of Inq. No. 119. (2.)
Date supplied from Fine Roll. This is plainly the enrolment of No. 472 noted as missing.

1363 Ralph of Shrewsbury

William De Lyston had died by 1367 as his wife Joan is listed as holding the right to make the wafers and present them to the King.

Thomas their son sold the land to Richard Lyons just before the peasants revolt in which Lyston manor was sacked and he lost his life.

A Thomas De Ilstone or Listone is mentioned in The Register of Thomas de Brantyngham, Bishop of Exeter 1370 to 1391 …..

We then pick up on a dispute between Robert or John Liston ( some sources say it was John and some say it was Robert, I think they were brothers as records exist for both) in the 1430s with John Mowbray Duke of Norfolk and his son in law Robert Wingfield.  The dispute was over land which Robert Liston claimed he had inherited from Sir William Carbonell, an inquisition post mortem held in autumn 1432 named Robert Wingfield as the heir without explaining why.  When it came to court Liston won and was awarded the properties.  Wingfield took action and  took them back and again Liston took it to court and won.  Wingfield went to his father in law the Duke of Norfolk and had Liston outlawed for assault but Liston had a powerful ally in the Earl Of Suffolk, William De Le Pole.  William De Le Pole had Wingfield imprisoned in the tower for 9 months, the Duke of Norfolk also seems to have spent time in the tower.  In November 1440 Liston was pardoned for outlawry and his goods were restored.

A different take on this can be read in  An Essay Towards a Topographical History of the County of Norfolk: Clavering …

This book states the arms of Liston as vert ten plates, 4,3,2,1 impalling carbonel gules , a cross argent in a bordure ingrailled ore.  by Francis Blomefield.


From the inquisition in 1370 when Joan late the wife of John De Liston died we see she had a son named Thomas who inherited, he also had a son named Thomas who was aged 26 at the time of her death.  His father had by this time granted Liston manor and the advowson of the church to Richard Lyouns. “The reversion belonged to Thomas, son and heir of the said William, who granted it to Richard Lyouns and his heirs by a fine levied in the king’s court with the king’s licence. By virtue of the said grant Joan attorned to the said Richard. “


When Ricard Lyons died in the peasant revolt the Essex inquisition listed th following people mentioned :

(In this inquisition the deceased is described as a citizen of London.) He had no other lands etc. in the county beyond the manor of Overhalle mentioned in the above inquisitions, because long before his death he enfeoffed Alesia lady de Nevyll, John Warde, Thomas Cornewaleys, John Middelton, John Spenser, parson of the church of Drynkeston, john, parson of the church of St. Peter, Cornehelle, and Henry Fannere, William More and Gilbert Bouet, citizens of London, of the under-mentioned manors and lands etc., to hold to them, their heirs and assigns, without any condition.
Gosfeld. The manor, whereof the site of the manor and 180 a. land and 200 a. wood are held of the earl of Oxford by service of a knight’s fee, 40 a. land and 2 a. meadow are held of Robert de Swynbourn and his wife by service of 5s. yearly, and the residue is held of John Haukwode and of the manors of Scoteneys and Topesfeld, service not known.
Lyston. The manor of Netherhalle, with the advowson of the church, held of the earl of March by service of 12s. yearly.
Lyston. Lands etc. called ‘Carboneles,’ held of John Bourghcher, knight by service of 3s. yearly; and lands called ‘Westones,’ held of Thomas Monchensy by service of 1 lb. pepper.
Foxherthe, Borle and Pentelowe. Lands etc., held of the earl of March, the earl of Oxford and Robert de Swynbourn, services not known.
He died on Friday after Holy Trinity, 4 Richard II. Heir not known.

Ref …

In this we see the names of the Carbonells, Bourchier, Earl of Oxford amongst others. All names associated with the Liston family.

On the medieval soldiers database John Aliston is listed as a archer under the command of William De Le Pole, Earl of Suffolk.

Also in the same database William Ayllyston is recorded as a Man at arms fighting with Sir Hugh Stafford Lord Bourchier and Henry V
TNA, E101/51/2, m22

Later Elyston, John is fighting under Thomas Harrington and Willoughby, Robert (1385 – 1452) Lord Willoughby of Eresby et al.

BNF, MS. Fr. 25769, no. 588

Roberts wife was Isabella, Robert died in 1478, Isabella died in 1491.  It seems his daughters inherited.  Roberts father was John who was the son of Sir John De Liston and Elizabeth daughter of Sir William Carbonell mentioned above.

Isabel Liston left her daughter amongst other items two books one of which was the Life of St Margaret.

Ref …

As Roberts family can be traced back to Sir John De Lyston it means we have and least two branches of the family because it was William and his son who inherited Liston.

In 1440 we have a record of Robert Lyston Senior and Robert Lyston Junior relating to the manor of Badyngham in the dispute above.  They leased the manor to William Pye for 22 years.


William De La Pole was murdered in 1450 and this changed the power base in East Anglia.  The Duke of Norfolk never really recovered from his dispute with Liston and William De la Pole leaving De Vere to become the main power base in East Anglia.

This was confirmed at the battle of Bosworth when John De Vere 13th Earl of Oxford and his men killed the Duke of Norfolk.  Richard III also died in the battle creating Henry VII as King.

It is at this time that William Alliston appears in the manor rolls of Castle Hedingham being born about 1480.  A William Eliston is named in the will of the 13th Earl of Oxford.

Prior to this there is a surviving will of Thomas Alston made on 30th August 1469 in which he mentions his brother William as well as a John Alston and his six sons the first of which is born in 1427.

The arms of the Alstons are very similar to the Listons.

Some of these Yeoman probably made up De Veres archers in the battle of Bosworth.

The families of William Alliston of Castle Hedingham are documented and many are traceable through to today as well as many of the descendants of Thomas Alston.

This photograph shows a section of the lintel on the  North Wall on Liston church.  One possibility occurs to me is that the flowers at each end of the Lintel became the stars on the Alston arms later on.

Copyright where applicable Mark Alliston
All other rights recognised and referenced.

Thanks to

Helen Proszenyak (Australia)  for help with the early Liston records.

Gill Leslie (Canada) for her research into the Castle Hedingham  Allistons and Ellistons

Edward Fenn for his work on the Alstons

And many others.

We are now looking at the Scottish branch with Tricia Barnett.

If anyone has any other information please contact me with references etc.


Research takes time Donations welcome

Origins of the surname Liston and Alliston