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16th Century Nos. 101 and 102. God Begot House. 4 storeys. Sides and north front in fairly original condition with plaster infilling to timber framework. Front to High Street restored. Timber-framed for one half of total front, with two oversailing gables above 3-storey projecting bays. Tiled roof. Modern shop fronts and modern lattice casement windows above. East wing rebuilt 1960, but retains timbering. Building is on the site of the Manor and Sanctuary of God-be-Got, an ancient enclosure independant of the city from 952-1541. The old shambles were on the eastern side of the building. Architect B. Cancellor.    SU 480 295

In 1002, Emma, daughter of Richard, Duke of Normandy, married Ethelred the Unready. As a wedding present the Duke gave her Winchester and Exeter. Ten years later he gave her the the Manor of Goudbeyete, Godbiete, or as it is now known, God Begot. Thus it is clear that, although in the City, the Manor was not part of the City. The Manor made its own laws and exacted its own taxes without reference to the Mayor of Winchester, or even the King himself.
The present building dates from 1050.

Emma outlived both Ethelred and her second husband Canute and, eventually, her son Edward the Confessor succeeded to the throne. Emma remained in Winchester for many years, and gathered enormous wealth. When she died, she willed the Manor of God Begot to “Christ, St. Peter and St Swithun, tax free and toll free for ever” and so it passed to the Prior and monks of  St Swithun.
 A Court Roll of the time records the following: “ Yf eny man or woman for eny felony clayme the liberte of Godbeat and enter it in eny house or place of ye same may bide and dwell safe from eny officer. And no mynyster of ye Kynge neither of none other lords shall do eny execucion withyn ye bounds of ye seid Manor but only ye mynystours of ye seid Prior and Convent of St. Swithun”.
A manor court was held by the steward of the priory, in the same way as he held courts on other manors belonging to St. Swithun’s.
It’s rights and privileges continued until the Dissolution of the Monasteries when the agents of Henry VIII took over the Manor of God Begot and all its possessions. A few weeks later Henry had second thoughts, and handed the lot back.
The Manor was in use long before the birth of Queen Emma, probably as a trading centre. It is believed that the name Goudbeyete, Godbiete, or God Begot, means “the goods getter.”
The present building has had a turbulent history and had varied uses, most lately as a prestige retail outlet.

Rear of god Begot House.    SU 480 294

RIGHT -  Royal Oak Passage
A narrow paved passageway, connecting the High Street and St. George's Street. LEFT - The ‘rear’ of ancient God Begot House with its overhanging and jettied floor on one side. At the rear of God Begot House the plan of St. Peter's Church is marked out on the pavement.

The Royal Oak Passage. Red brick with old tile roof. 2 storeys. Early 19th century appearance, but basically older.   SU 480 295
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