A primrose at Candlemas….


Orleton Manor

“….and grant of the said manor and lands to Sir Walter for two years from this date, rendering one primrose a year at the Purification…”

You’ll find the above extract at this site. https://www.british-history.ac.uk/cal-close-rolls/ric2/vol3/pp296-298 It records an agreement between Sir Walter de Cokesseye and the more famous Sir Hugh Calveley, who was a famous and well-respected 14th-century soldier. (At least, I’m supposing it was the battling Sir Hugh. His nephew was another Sir Hugh, and a Member of Parliament.)

Sir Hugh Calveley

We’ve all heard of roses being required as rent, and even peppercorns, but this is the first time I’ve heard of a primrose being used this way. A primrose at Candlemas. It sounds so beautiful. And beautiful is the only word to describe Orleton Manor. The house has recently been for sale at just over £1 million. Only, she says! But truly, when I think of some prices, this looks a true bargain. Well, it did, it’s no longer for sale, but you can see all the detail at this site here. The 18 photographs are splendid, and not foggy!

Orleton is in Herefordshire, south of Ludlow, and the present house dates from the late 16th century, but clearly there was a manor there before then, and in the 1387 agreement there is mention of one primrose being rendered at Candlemas.

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