Although we shall never know for certain, there is strong circumstantial evidence to
suggest that the Tapson name may have originated in the south-west corner of Devonshire, possibly in the parish of Buckland Monachorum, monachorum being the genitive plural of the Mediaeval Latin word monachus meaning monk. Buckland of the Monks was so called because Buckland Abbey, of the Cistercian Order, was founded there in 1278. In the Domesday survey of 1086 the parish is called Bocheland or Bochelanda ; the Episcopal Registers of the Diocese of Exeter of 1271-6 refer to it as Bockelonde; but in the Taxatio Ecclesiastica (Supplement to Bishop Bronescombeâ’s Register) of 1291, thirteen years after the establishment of the abbey there, the parish has acquired the name
Nestling among the sheltered south-western foothills of the great granite mass of Dartmoor, the village of Buckland Monachorum is about four miles south of its nearest market town, Tavistock, and nine miles north of the city and naval port of Plymouth. This peaceful little village has changed little over the centuries, although nowadays it can become quite bustling during the tourist season, the principal attraction being the abbey, a mile to the south of the village.
The Dissolution of the Monasteries (1536-1540) was motivated by the financial needs
of King Henry VIII, who confiscated the monastic wealth and property, and it was excused on the grounds of the alleged decadence of the monastic orders and the scandalous lives of their members. By the time of the Dissolution of Buckland Abbey in 1539 the Tapson family was well established in Buckland Monachorum.