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Sawtry Judith

History of Sawtry Judith

Sawtry Judith is a deserted village that lay immediately to the south-west of Sawtry Abbey.

It was listed in the Domesday Book as a 10 hide manor held by Countess Judith niece of William the Conqueror with a population of 28 including a priest. The manor passed to her daughter Maud and then to her grandson Simon de St Liz, Earl of Northampton and Huntingdon. In 1147 the Earl founded the Cistercian Abbey of Sawtry on the site and endowed it with the manor of Sawtry Judith. It is possible that the village was cleared soon after this since Cistercian monasteries were supposed to be isolated from everyday life.

Certainly by the time the monastery was dissolved in the 16th century, the parish church and the village had gone. The modern Sawtry village at its south end occupies land that was in fact part of Sawtry Judith.


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