Maxstoke (St. Michael)
MAXSTOKE (St. Michael), a parish, in the union of Meriden, Atherstone division of the hundred of Hemlingford, N. division of the county of Warwick, 2¾ miles (S. E. by E.) from Coleshill; containing 346 inhabitants. This place, written Machintone in Domesday book, is therein certified as having woods one mile in length and half a mile in breadth. William de Odingsells, in the reign of Henry III., had a charter of free warren in all his demesne lands here; and his son and successor claimed by prescription, in the reign of Edward I., a court-leet, with gallows, tumbrell, and assize of bread and beer, which were allowed. The lordship was conveyed by an heiress to the Clintons, who exchanged it with the noble family of Stafford. The parish is bounded on the west and south by the river Blythe, and comprises by computation 2719 acres: the soil is generally a stiff clay producing good crops of wheat, and the surface is flat, except on the east, where it rises into a hill of considerable elevation. The Derby and Birmingham railway passes through the parish. Maxstoke Castle is the property of Capt. Thomas Dilke, R.N., a descendant of Sir Thomas Dilke, who purchased it in the 41st of Elizabeth from Sir Thomas Egerton, keeper of the great seal: the buildings occupy an irregular quadrilateral area, inclosed by an embattled wall, and defended at the angles by octagonal towers, and are in a fine state of preservation. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £5. 6. 8.; net income, £70; patron and impropriator, Lord Leigh. There are extensive remains of a priory of Augustine canons, founded in 1336 by Sir William de Clinton, Earl of Huntingdon, and which was dedicated to the Holy Trinity, the Blessed Virgin Mary, St. Michael, and All Saints, and at the Dissolution had a revenue of £129. 11. 8.