Researching Redmarley D'Abitot (General)

by Jefff @, West London, Middlesex, Monday, March 28, 2011, 16:00 (2615 days ago) @ unknown

Further to a recent thread re whether or not Redmarley and Redmarley D'Abitot is one and the same place, ("official" answer unfortuantely "no", see thread) I thought the following might be of interest to other researchers. I'm unsure as to whether it's truly a Forest of Dean village but hopefully this will be of interest to some. As a "true" Forester myself I'm "careful" with my cash, so will always search for free information wherever possible. Thankfully there is much available online for Redmarley D'Abitot, it's been named as such since Domesday times:
"Ridmarley Dabitot was so called from Geoffry de’Abetot a Descendant of Robert D’abetot Steward of the Household to King William the Conqueror & Brother to Urso D’abitot who was under the same King Sheriff of this County."

Presumably because of it's rich and long history, I have found various excellent and strongly recommended free-to-view internet resources regarding the village and it's ancient church St Bartholomew's, such as:

1. Incredibly extensive, seemingly complete & hugely interesting Parish Church Records transcriptions dating from 1542 right through to 1812 !. As a researcher of the Brace & Merrick families I've found this enormously fruitful as I hope others will too. The "D'Abitot" family line is still surviving within these records five centuries after their first Normans ancestors !.

2. Extensive Parish Church references including more recent memorial transcriptions are available at Wishful Thinking's Genuki:

3. 19th Century Census Transcriptions are available at Gloucestershire Genuki:

"It was usual for a witch to undergo 'trial by water', for it was believed that,as a form of baptism, the water would reject a disciple of the devil. The thumbs were tied crosswise to the opposite big toes, and the woman thrown into the pool. If she floated it was conclusive proof she was a witch, if she sank, she was innocent. The last recorded 'Trial by Water' was at Red Marley D'Abitot, a Worcestershire village before its transfer to Gloucestershire. William Lygon, the first Earl Beauchamp, was riding through his constituency in the 1820s, when he came upon a throng of excited rustics, and learnt that they were putting an alleged witch through the ordeal by water'. His horrified protest was resented and they were at great pains to assure him that everything was in proper order and according to traditional rules. Only by his prompt and unflinching assertion of authority as a County Justice was he able to save the wretched victim who, a few minutes later, would have demonstrated her innocence by drowning."

Many thanks to all associated with the above referenced websites !

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