Le Câtillon de Bas

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Jersey houses

Grouville:

Le Câtillon de Bas


Catillon-stone1.jpg

The 1620 datestone from the old house, incorporated in the front wall of the replacement

Catillon-stone2.jpg

Very difficult to read today, the italic script stone on an outbuilding



Le Câtillon de Bas

This fine Grouville house was in the hands of the Amy family from 1500, until it was sold to William Labey in 1926.

It was acquired by the family when Drouet Amy, the son of Raulin Amy, married Guillemette Aumont, and passed down the male line until sold by Philip Mourant Amy, eldest son of Philip du Parcq Amy, Deputy of Grouville in 1885. William John (Willy) Labey was Philip Mourant's mother, Lydia Jane Mourant's second husband. Philip had no children, and this appears to be why he sold the property to his stepfather.

Willy Labey's only child, Molly Kitchener, inherited the property when he died in 1943. She had lived in Malaysia for many years with her husband and escaped from Singapore on the liner Empress of Japan just before the Japanes invaded during World War 2. She eventually returned to live in Le Câtillon until her death in 1990.

Datestones

The present house dates to the 18th century, but a stone dated 1620 is built into the front wall. This is inscribed 1620 FAM EAM, and is the keystone of an old arch which has been incorporated into the newer house. The inscription has been ascribed to Francois and Elizabeth Amy in the Jersey Datestone Register, but it could possibly be for Francois Amy (1568-1627) who married Rachel Le Demptu and then Esther Lempriere, d of Michel, Seigneur of Diélament.

It could also be for their son Francois (1599-1628), the name of whose wife is not known. It is possible that he married an Elizabeth Amy, because normally the initials of the wife on a datestone indicate her maiden name.

There are several other datestones at Le Câtillon de Bas, probably as many as at any other Jersey house.

  • PAM ♥ ECR 1802 [1] on an outbuilding represents Philippe Amy of Grouville and Esther Carrel of Trinity, who were married in Trinity on 11 October 1797.
  • PAM ♥ EMR on a broken lintel on the west wing represents Philippe Amy and Elizabeth Mourant who were married in Grouville on 23 June 1699.
  • PAM ♥ EMR 1772 on the east wing represents another Philippe Amy who also married an Elizabeth Mourant; on east wing.
  • PAM 1826 in a roadside wall at the entrance is probably for a third Philippe Amy, son of the above Philippe and Esther Carrel, who married Elizabeth Anthoine.
  • PAM ♥ EAT 1834 on an outbuilding is a rare inscription in italic script representing the same Philippe Amy of Grouville and Elizabeth Anthoine, of St Saviour
  • PAM ♥ MML 1805, in the west wing, is for Philippe Amy and Marie Mallet, who married in St Helier on 12 May 1804
  • PAM ♥ MML 1818 at the rear of the east wing, is for the same Philippe Amy and Marie Mallet [2]

Notes and references

  1. The ♥ symbol is used to represent the intertwined hearts found on many datestones
  2. The appearance of stones with more than one date for the same couple support the view that it is incorrect to refer to these Jersey stones as marriage stones - they were more often commissioned and placed to mark the construction or refurbishment of a building rather than an event in the lives of its occupants
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