Family and Estate Papers of the Parkyns family of Bunny, Nottinghamshire, c.1250-1927

Scope and Content

The material dates from the thirteenth century to 1927. The deeds, of which there are 120, reflect the family history. Most early deeds relate to estates in Nottinghamshire and surrounding counties prior to their ownership by the Parkyns. The later deeds include estates in Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Kent.

Of the 100 letters in the collection, 75 are to or from Sir Thomas Parkyns, the 2nd baronet. They concern family and estate matters, and touch upon his public and social activities.

Many of the manorial records date from the same period, the early eighteenth century, when Sir Thomas was lord of the various manors. Those concerning the Bunny estate date back to the fifteenth century when the manor was in the hands of the Illingworth family, but also cover Richard Parkyns' lordship in the early seventeenth century.

The legal papers follow the same pattern as the manorial records, but run into the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

There are extensive genealogical notes and pedigrees written by Mansfield Parkyns, and some Arabic maunscripts collected by him during his travels.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Parkyns family of Nottinghamshire was connected with the ancient family of Parkyns or Perkyns of Berkshire, but was more immediately descended from the branch in Worcestershire. By the end of the sixteenth century, Richard Parkyns was already settled at Bunny, Nottinghamshire. His son and heir, George, married Mary, the daughter of Edward Isham of Walmer, Kent. Their son, Isham Parkyns, soldiered loyally in the Royalist cause during the Civil War and, in recognition of this service, his son Thomas was made a baronet by Charles II in 1681.

Sir Thomas Parkyns (1662-1741), the 2nd baronet, was one of the most eminent members of the family. He was a noted wrestler and wrote a book on Cornish Hugg wrestling. He brought up his grandson Thomas following the death of his son Sampson in 1713.

Mansfield Parkyns (b 1823) was descended from Sir Thomas Parkyns, 3rd baronet, by his third wife Jane Boultbee. He travelled in the Middle East in his early years and later turned his attentions to the history of the family.


Material is arranged in sections according to type (e.g. Accounts, Correspondence) and chronologically within these sections.

Access Information

ACCESS: Accessible to all registered readers

REPROGRAPHIC: Photocopies and photographic copies can be supplied for educational use and private study purposes only, depending on the condition of the documents.

Other Finding Aids

NOTE: Copyright on all Finding Aids belongs to the University of Nottingham.

  • In the Reading Room, University of Nottingham Library: Typescript Catalogue, 18 pp
  • At the National Register of Archives, London: Typescript Catalogue, 18 pp

Conditions Governing Use

COPYRIGHT: Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the Keeper of the Department of Manuscripts and Special Collections (email ). The Department will try to assist in identifying copyright owners but the responsibility for copyright clearance before publication ultimately rests with the reader.

LANGUAGE: English and Arabic.

Custodial History

Most of the manuscripts were collected and preserved by Mansfield Parkyns, who also compiled many of the genealogical notes. The papers were subsequently sorted by a family member and executor and in 1941-42 given to what was then the University College, Nottingham.