Kensington

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Coordinates: 51°30′01″N 0°11′27″W / 51.5004°N 0.1909°W / 51.5004; -0.1909

Kensington is a district of west London, England within the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. An affluent and densely-populated area, its commercial heart is Kensington High Street and it contains the well-known museum district of South Kensington.

To the north, Kensington is bordered by Notting Hill; to the east, by Brompton and Knightsbridge; to the south, by Chelsea and Earl's Court; and to the west, by Hammersmith and Shepherd's Bush.

Contents

Name

The area is first mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086, where it was written in Latin as "Chenesitone",[1] which has been interpreted to have originally been "Kenesignetun" (Kenesigne's land or meadows) in Anglo-Saxon.

History

The manor of Kensington, Middlesex, was granted by William I of England to Geoffrey de Montbray or Mowbray, bishop of Coutances, one of his inner circle of advisors and one of the wealthiest men in post-Conquest England. He in turn granted the tenancy of Kensington to his vassal Aubrey de Vere I, who was holding the manor in 1086, according to Domesday Book. The bishop's heir, Robert de Mowbray, rebelled against William Rufus and his vast barony was declared forfeit. Aubrey de Vere I had his tenure converted to a tenancy in-chief, holding Kensington after 1095 directly of the crown.[2] He granted land and church there to Abingdon Abbey at the deathbed request of his young eldest son, Geoffrey.[3] As the Veres became the earls of Oxford, their estate at Kensington came to be known as Earls Court, while the Abingdon lands were called Abbots Kensington and the church St Mary Abbots.

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