MDE20877 - Countisbury (Place)
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Type and Period (1)
Countisbury was 'Contesberia' in Domesday. It was held by William Capra. Before the conquest it was held by Ailmer. Later it was given to Forde Abbey by Henry de Tracy. It continued with the Abbey until the dissolution. Early descents given.  The settlement of Countisbury was mentioned as 'Contesberia' in 1086, 'Cuntesberia' in 1177, 'Cundeburye' in 1238 and 'Cunisbere in 1577.  Countisbury may be a rare survival of British culture after the Saxon colonisation of Devon. The name derives from the british word 'Cunet' meaning hill and the Old English word 'Burg' suggesting a fortification. NT ref. 100260  Countisbury is a natural defensive site & was the scene of a battle in 878AD between English and Dane when it was referred to as 'Arx Cynuit'. The name probably derives from a Celtic personal name which includes the Celtic element 'Cuno' meaning 'hound'.  The historic core of Countisbury is depicted on the Countisbury Tithe Map and later First and Second Edition 25 inch Ordnance Survey maps. [5-7] An earthwork platform was noted to the southwest of the church during a watching brief in 2021. This may have formed part of the historic core of the settlement. The HER GIS data has been amended appropriately. 
- <1> SDE59335 Monograph: Reichel, O. J.. 1928-1938. Hundreds of Devon: The Hundred of Shirwell in Early Times. P. 404,461,466,478,486,487,491.
- <2> SDE1312 Monograph: Gover, J.E.B., Mawer, A. and Stenton, F.M.. 1931. The Place-Names of Devon: Part One. VIII. P. 62.
- <3> SDE322990 Report: Berry, N.. 2004. Archaeological and Historic Landscape Survey of Kipscombe Farm, Countisbury. National Trust Archaeological Survey Report. P. 4.
- <4> SDE323103 Article in monograph: Coates, R. + Breeze, A, + Horovitz, D.. 2000. Countisbury: A Breeze. Celtic Voices English Places: Studies of the Celtic impact on place-names in England. Part 4: Some Devon Place-Names. 126-8. P. 126-8.
- <5> SEM8072 Map: <1841. Countisbury Tithe Map and Apportionment.
- <6> SEM6703 Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
- <7> SEM7190 Map: Ordnance Survey. 1902-1907. County Series, 2nd Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
- <8> SEM340807 Report: Rainbird, P. and Payne, N.. 2021. A new electricity cable route on land at Countisbury Common, Countisbury, Exmoor, Devon: Results of an archaeological watching brief. p4, 5, Figure 2e; Plates 7-8.
|Grid reference||Centred SS 746 496 (268m by 267m) (Historic mapping)|
|Civil Parish||COUNTISBURY, NORTH DEVON, DEVON|
Related Monuments/Buildings (1)
Related Events/Activities (2)
Related Articles (1)
External Links (1)
- https://heritagerecords.nationaltrust.org.uk/HBSMR/MonRecord.aspx?uid=MNA108049 (National Trust HER entry: MNA108049)
- Devon SMR Monument ID: 19132
- Devon SMR: SS74NW/84
- Local Plan - Historic Core
- National Trust HER Record: MNA108049
Record last edited
Apr 20 2021 1:23PM
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