Of the schires other prouinces of Englonde. Capitulum quadragesimum nonum.
HIT is to be attended that Englonde conteynethe xxxxijti schires other provinces, Cornewaile excepte and other yles. Alfridus. These be the names of the schires, Kente, Southesex, Sutherey, Hampteschire, Barrokeschire, takenge that name of hit of a bare oke in the foreste of Wyndeshore, where men of that province were wonte to mete for a tretys to be made betwene partes; also Wildeschire, that was callede somme tyme the province of Seuerne, So|mersete, Dorsete, Deuenschire. These ix. sowthe pro|uinces aforeseide, thauȝhe Thamys departethe theyme, thei were iuggede somme tyme by the lawe of the Weste Saxones, whiche is callede Westesaxenelaga. But Estesex, Page 87, vol.2 Middelsex, Sowthefolke, Northefolke, Hertefordeschire, Hunt|yngdonschire, Northehamptonschire, Cambriggeschire, Bed|fordeschire, Bukkynghamschire, Leicestreschire, Derbyschire, Notynghamschire, Lincolneschire, Yorkeschire, Diremsehire, Northumbrelande, Caerlielschire, Cumbirlande, Appelbischire, with Westmerlande, Lancastreschire, whiche conteinethe in hit v. other schires. These xv. schires afore seide of the este and of the northe were iuggede somme tyme by a lawe whiche was callede Danelaga. But Oxforde|schire, Warwickeschire, Gloucestreschire, Wircestreschire, Herdefordeschire, Shropschire, Stafordeschire, and Chestre|schire,—these viij. mydelleschires and weste were iuggede somme tyme by the lawe of marches, whiche was callede in Englische Merchenelaga. Also hit is to be attendede that the prouince of Yorke extendethe hit oonly now from the arche of the floode of Humbre vn to the floode of Teyse; neuerthelesse there be in hit xxijti hundredes, whiche be callede wapentakes, for a hundrede in Latyn [folio 68a] , other clles a tancrede in Walesche other Yrische, con|teynethe a c. townes. A wapentake in Englische is seide to take wepens; for tenauntes were wonte to yelde Page 89, vol.2 theire wepens for an homage in the firste commenge of newe lordes. Duremschire extendethe hit from the floode of Teyse to the floode of Tyne. Northumbrelonde pro|prely extendethe hit from the floode of Tyne to the floode of Twide, whiche is the begynnenge of Scotlonde. And if the plage of Northumbrelonde, which was somme tyme from Humbre vn to Twide, be accomptede as for oon pro|uince other schire, as hit was wonte, then there be in En|glonde oonly xxxijti schires. And if that plage of North|umbrelonde be diuidede into vj. provinces, whiche be Euerwikschire, Duremschire, Northumbrelonde, Carliel|schire, Appelbeschire, Lancastreschire, then there be in Englonde xxxvjti schires, except yles perteynenge to that londe, and also Cornewaile. Whiche alle William Conque|rour, Page 91, vol.2 kynge of Englonde, causede to be describede, and the hides and carucates of londes to be measurede; in which londe xxxvjti schires were founde and dimid., lijti m. and lxxx. townes, and xlti and v. m. peresche chirches and tweyne, lx. m. fees of knyȝhtes and xv., of whom religious men have xxviijti m. and xv. fees; but now, woodes kytte downe and made arable londe, there be mony moo townes and hides of londe then were in that tyme.