20/05/2022

GGF23b Anketin de Denton – GGF22 Robert de Denton/Anketin – GU22 Robert de Denton

Forward to GGF21 – John de Denton – Forward to Middle Ages Index
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GGF23b – Anketin de Denton

Anketin proves to be a viable alternative 23rd GGF in my lineage and is certainly the progenitor from whom our branch in the lineage of Dentons was subsequently descended.

After Aelfward he was the first recorded person to use the name Denton. He took it from his base being those two small places in Cumberland. Regrettably I cannot get back beyond Anketin. Some sources name him as Asketil or Asketin, but finding nothing further he is currently our source.

He was mentioned as a witness to a marriage settlement found in the National Archives:

Ralph de Halhuton to John de Denton on his marriage to “Agnes my daughter.”
30 acres of land with toft and croft which Stacius the clerk had from me in the land of Halhuton and half an acre outside the said croft on which to build granges and other buildings; and ten acres of land from his demesne in the said township “prout illas ei mesurare feci”
[measure them as I did to him]; and one sheiling near Wiglesmer for all chattels which he wishes to have there; “and I grant to the said John and his heirs the liberty of grinding his corn and that of his men which grows on the said land at my mill free of the multure which he ought to give.” 
Witnesses: William Haulton, Adam Bertram, Thomas de Haulton, John his brother, Robert de Denton, Adam de Thirlewal, Ralph Blenkinsohope, Anketin de Denton, Richard the clerk, Adam de Thyrlwal and others

GGF22 – Robert de Denton / Anketin

The two independent branches (Sims/Bueth and Anketin) were unified when Anketin’s son, Robert de Denton, became the second husband of Sigreda (Alice/Sirith) Bueth, the co-heiress of Robert, son of Bueth and daughter of Bueth. This move also secured the family’s position in the locale.

Modern road sign into Castle Carrock – its unique(?) ‘Please Dance’ message references its music festival ‘Music on the Marr’

As we saw above Sigreda (Alice?) had previously married Eustace de Vaux, the Lord of Hayton in Gilsland (the descendant of Hugh and Robert de Vaux). They had two children Adam de Castlecarrock and Isabella de Castlecarrock.

Robert and Sigreda had four sons – Robert, John, David and Simon, and two daughters – Anketin and Agnes.

Robert de Denton clearly had ambition because in a bold double dynastic marriage:

  • he had one son John de Denton (my GGF21) marry Isabella, the heiress de Vaux (Eustace and Sigreda’s daughter)
  • and another son Robert de Denton (my GU22) was married to Eda’s daughter the Heiress of Adcock of Bewcastle (see below).

Hence the reason that my lineage can be traced back both to Sims and to Anketin.

John Denton the Historian, writing in late 16th/early 17th c, expresses all of this thus:

Over Denton and Nether Denton, the two moieties then by partition. Hayton’s part was given to John son of Robert son of Anketin or Asketill de Denton, and Robert brother to the said John married the heir to the other part. The said Robert fil Bueth was their mother’s brother… Over Denton [in] 7 Edward I was given by Richard Stowland and Helena his wife to John Withrington with whose issue male it remains at this day. Nether Denton descended from the said John son of Robert son of Anketin to John and to Richard Denton Knight his son’s son, whose daughter Margaret wife to Adam Copley of Bateley in Craven, had it in marriage 17 Edward 2. John son of Adam had issue Richard Copley whose daughter Isabel wife to Adam Denton son of Thomas del Hall had Denton from her father in marriage in Hen. IV time. Thomas Denton Esq., now of Warnell, the son of Thomas son of John holds Warnell in exchange for Denton, which exchange was made in the 23rd of Henry VII by the said John and Thomas with the Lord Dacre, which John Denton was son to Richard son of Thomas son of Adam son of Thomas del Hall as aforesaid.

My text seeks to untangle this and report it more understandably to the modern ear.

Robert de Denton – GU22 (1293- )

This Robert married the unnamed heiress of Adcock of Bewcastle, and they produced a son Sir Robert de Denton of Lanerton in 1293. This Sir Robert (the third), is therefore my GU22. It did prove possible to find out a little of his career. The first record shows he agreed to take £10’s worth of land at Denton in Gilsland as the recompense for one-sixth of his knight’s fee.

Robert was well-connected enough to be recorded as twice petitioning King Edward III:

  • In 1340 he requested that he be restored to his office of coroner in the liberty of Holderness [East Riding of Yorkshire]. He was granted this bailiwick for his good service, but was ejected by Longleis who is now dead, and the bailiwick is wrongly in the hand of the king.
  • He later petitioned the king to found a hospital for ‘curing mad people’, which right after some deliberation he bestowed on St Katherine’s-by-the-Tower Hospital in London.

This is interesting. A knight plying his trade on the Scottish borders arguing about land in east Yorkshire, and having the ability to gain agreement from the king and then applying that benefice in London some 320 miles away. There was evidently more joined-up thinking than we credit them for in the 14th century.

Bewcastle Cross

Bewcastle is woven in to our early family history – see Bueth. The Bewcastle Cross is an Anglo-Saxon cross in its original position within the churchyard of St Cuthbert’s church at Bewcastle.


St Cuthbert’s Bewcastle
showing the Cross
Bewcastle cross
Cross reliefs

The Bewcastle Cross is said to date from the 7th/8th c (the Age of Bede) and features reliefs and inscriptions in the runic alphabet. The head of the cross is missing, the extant part is 14.5 ft (4.4m) high, and square in section at the base. The crosses of Bewcastle and Ruthwell, both part of Anglo-Saxon Northumbria, have been described by the scholar Nikolau Pevsner as the greatest achievement of their date in the whole of Europe. Together they represent the largest and most elaborately decorated Anglo-Saxon crosses to have survived mostly intact, and they are generally discussed together.

The Bewcastle Cross reliefs show human figures (west side), animals, chequers, vine scrolls, interlace knots and a sundial. The north, west, and south sides of the cross also feature runic inscriptions. The three extant human figures are John the Baptist holding the Agnus Dei (Lamb of God), a nimbussed Christ is being lifted up on the heads to two identical creatures, and a falconer possibly St. John the Evangelist with his eagle.

St Mary’s replica

A replica of the Bewcastle Cross (including a guess as to the missing part), is in the churchyard of St Mary’s Church at Wreay, Carlisle. It is pictured set before the Losh mausoleum, Sarah Losh was an architect, designer and antiquarian – the church and mausoleum for her sister, Katharine, were built 1840-44.

Note on shorthand acronyms being used in the DFB:
GGF1 / GGM1 – means first great-grandfather /mother;
GU11 / GA11 – means eleventh great-uncle / great-aunt;
1C3 – means first cousin three times removed

Forward to GGF21 – John de Denton – Forward to Middle Ages Index
Back to GGM22 – Sigreda de Denton (Beuth/Vaux) – Back to Denton Family Bible

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