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THE 



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VOLUME XVI 
FOB THE YEAR 1902 



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THE 



PUBLICATIONS 



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VOLUME XVI 
FOB THE YEAR 1902 



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FouNrsD 1887 

TO ENCOURAGE THE STUDY AND ADVANCE THE KNOWLEDGE 
OP THE HISTORY OF ENGLISH LAW. 



pattond : 

HIS MAJESTY THE KINO. 
HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS THE PRINCE OF WALES. 

ptedident: 

THE RIGHT HONOURABLE LORD MACNAGHTEN. 

V>ice«pte0identd : 

THE HON. MR. JUSTICE WILLS. 
MR. W. C. UENSHAW, K.C. 

Council : 
Mr. J. T. Atkinson. The Hon. Mr. Justice Joyce. 



Mu. Henry Attlee. 

The Hon. Mr. Justice Bruce. 

The Hon. Mr. Justice Byrne. 

Mr. A. T. Carter. 

The Hon. Mr. Justice Channell. 

Mr. Chadwyck Healey, K.C. 

Mr. F. A. Inderwick, E.C. 



Sir H. C. M. Lyte, K.C.B. 
The Biqht Hon. the Master of 

THE Bolls. 
Mr. A. Stuart Moore. 
Mr. B. Pennington. 
Sir F. Pollock, Bart. 
Mr. T. Cyprl^n Williams. 



Xitetan? S)frectot : 
Professor F. W. Maitland (Downing College, Cambridge). 

l)onorari? Budftotd : 
Mr. J. W. Clark. Mr. Hubert Hall. 

Donorati? Sectetati^ : 

Mr. B. Fossktt Lock (11 New Square, Lincoln's Inn, London). 

Donotati^ tCreaauter : 

Mr. Francis K. Munton (Montpelier House, Twickenham). 

Don* Secretati? and tTreasurer tor tbe Tllntted States : 
Mr. Bichard W. Hale (10 Tremont Street, Boston, Mass.). 



Before t^ TXinc^e £ouncif in i1^ ^tax C^amBer 



OOMMONLY GALLED 



€it Coutt of ^iat Ci^amitx 



A.D. 1477-1609 



PBIXTED BT 

BFOmaWOODK AHD CO. LTD., KlW-frTRKET SQl'ARK 

LONDON 



SELECT CASES BEFORE THE KING'S COUNCIL IN 

THE STAR CHAMBER 



COMMONLY CALLED 



"THE- COURT OF STAR CHAMBER 



A.D. 1477-1509 



EDITED 
FOR THE SELDEN SOCIETY 

BT 

I. S. LEADAM 



LONDON 

BERNARD QUARITCH, 15 PICCADILLY 

1903 

All rights reserved 






CONTENTS 



INTRODUCTION 



Page X 



SELECT PLEAS FROM THE RECORDS OP THE COURT 
OF STAR CHAMBER. 



Parties. 

Mayor &o. of Exeter v. Stoden and 

Others 
Tayllour v, Att Well 

Parker v, Duke of Suffolk 

Attomey-Qeneral v, Parre and 
Others 

Prior of Bath v. Abbot of St. Augus- 
tine's, Canterbury 

Couper V, Gervaux and Others 

Vale V. Broke ] 

Donyngton v. Broke [ 

Smyth v. Broke j 

Culford V, Wotton 

Idele V, Abbot of St. Bennet's Holme 

Tapton V, Colsyll 

Madeley v. Fitzherbert 

Lead Miners of Yorkshire v. Mer- 
chants of York 

Hewyt and Others and Mayor of 
Exeter v. Mayor &c. of London 

Gk)ryng v. Earl of Northumberland 

Joyfull V. Warcoppe 

Pynson and Others v. Squyer and 
Others 

Carter v. Abbot of Malmesbury 

Mayne and Others v. Gibbes and 
Another 

Eebell v. Vernon 

Abbot of Eynesham v. Hareoourt 

and Others 
Treherne and Another v. Hareoourt 
Walterkyn v. Letioe 
Halle 17. Essexe 



Date. 


Subject. 


Rige. 


1477' 


Conflict between Gild of 
Tailors and Corporation 


1 


1482 < 


Conspiracy and forgery of 
Exchequer process 


6 


1485-1489 


Forcible disseisin 


15 


1486-1607 


Attaint of jury 


18 


1489 


Detinue and malversation 


20 


1493 


Illegal toll and violence 


36 


1493 


Slander 


38 


1493 


Slander 


40 


1493 


Slander 


41 


1494 


Forcible eviction 


45 


1495 


Contempt of court and 
threats 


50 


1495 


Assault and false imprison- 
ment 


51 


1496 


Wrongful impounding 


54 


1499 


Illegal weights 


69 


1500 


Illegal toUs 


71 


1500? 


Wrongful detention 


95 


1500 


Riot and assault 


106 


1500 


Riot and assault 


114 


1500 


False imprisonment 


118 


1501 


Wrongful eviction and tres- 
pass 


129 


1502 


Forcible abduction 


130 


1503 


Riot and assault 


187 


1503 


Contempt of court 


162 


1503 


Assault 


164 


1503 


Forcible Disseisin 


168 



Before the King in Council. 



VIU 



Parties. 



The Abbot v. the Bailiffs of 

Shrewsbury 
The Abbot v. the Bailiffs of 

Shrewsbarj 

Petition of Mayor Ac. of Gloucester 

Petition of the Bailiffs and Citizens 
of Worcester 

Whyte t;. the Mayor and Bur- 
gesses of Gloucester 

Powe and Another v, Newman 

Bishop of Worcester V. Thomas and 

Others 
Certificate of Sir Bichard Dalabere 

and Justices of the Peace for 

Herefordshire 
Principal of Fumivall*s Inn v, 

Johnson and Others 
Colthurst V. Gentlemen of Fumi- 

vall's Inn 
Furburv. Principal ±c. of Fumi- 

vall's Inn 
Abbott of Byland v. Warooppe 
Butlond and Others v. Ansten and 

Others 
Master Ao. of All Saints, Maidstone, 

t;. Kempe 
Lady Straunge v, Kenaston 
Jones V. Lychleld 



CONTENTS 






Date. 


Subject. 


Pmre 


1604 
1609 


Municipal and abbatial 

franchises 
Municipal and abbatial 

franchises 


178 
189 


1604 
1504 

1605 


ToUs 

ToUs 
Tolls 


209 

218 
226 


1604-1518 
1506 
1606 


False imprisonment and 

detinue 
Riotous interference with 

election of constables 
Biot 


227 
230 
234 


1507 


Cutting and wounding 


237 


1507 


Cutting and wounding 


245 


1507 


Detinue and breach of the 


247 


1507 


peace 
Trespass and wounding 


263 


1507 


GUd's iUegal by.Uws 


262 


1508 
1608 
1509 


Wrongful presentation 

Trespass 

False imprisonment 


271 
274 
275 



APPENDIX 

INFORMATION IN THE EXCHEQUER AGAINST THE FOUNDERS' 

COMPANY, 1606 279 

INDEX OF AUTHORITIES CITED 286 

INDEX OF SUBJECTS 299 

INDEX OF PERSONS AND PLACES 307 



INTEODUGTION 



PART I 



1. The Statute * Pro Camera Stellata.' 

2. The Condition of the Records. 

8. Process of the Court of Star Chamber. 

a. Bill, Address, and Prayer. 

b. Indorsement of Bill. 

c. Writs of Summons &c. 

d. Appearance, Answer, Demurrer. 

e. Replication and Rejoinder. 
/. Examination of Witnesses. 
g. Judgement. 

4. Composition of the Court of Star Chamber. 

5. Jurisdiction of the Court of Star Chamber. 

1. Much of the ensuing discussion turns upon the wording of the 
Act of 8 Hen. 7, c. 1 (1487), intituled in the copy from the Rolls of 
Parliament printed in the Statutes of the Realm 'Pro Camera 
Stellata.' As the Statutes of the Realm are not always accessible, and 
are printed in somewhat unwieldy volumes, it has been thought 
desirable to reprint this statute here as a text upon which the intro- 
duction is founded. The statute runs as follows : — 

Fro Camera Stellata. 

* An Acte geving the Court of Starchamber Authority to punnysshe 
dyvers Mydemeanors.^ 

' The Kyng cure Sovereygn Lord remembreth howe by onlawfuU 
mayntenaunces gevyng of lyveres signes and tokyns and reteyndres 
by endentur promyses othes writyng or otherwise, embraciaries of his 
subgettes, ontrue demeanynges of Shrevys in makyng of panelles and 
other ontrewe retournes, by takyng of money by jurryes, by greate 

' Sic. 



X COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

riotts and anlawfall assemblez, the polacye and good rule of this 
reahne is ahnost subdued, and for the nowne punyshement of this 
inconvenience and by occasion of the premyssis nothyng or lityll may 
be founde by enquerry, wherby the Lawes of the lond in execucion 
may take litell effecte to the encres of murdres roberies perjuries 
and unsuerties of all men lyvyng and losses of their londes and 
goodes, to the greate displeasure of Allmyghty God Be yt therfor 
ordyned for reformacion of the premysses by thauctorite of this 
parliament, That the Chaunceller and Tresorer of Englond for the 
tyme beyng and Eeper of the Kyngs pryvye Seall or too of theym 
calling to hym a Bisshopp and a temporall Lord of the Eynges most 
Honorable Ciouncell and the too chyeff Justices of the Eynges Benche 
and Gomyn Place for the tyme beyng, or other too Justices in ther 
absence, uppon bill or informacion put to the seid Chaunceller, for 
the Eyng or any other, ageyn eny persone for eny mysbehavyng 
afore rehersed, have auctorite to call before theym by Wrytte or 
Pryvye seall the seid mysdoers and theym and other by ther discres- 
sions to whome the trouthe may be knowen to examyn, and such as they 
fynd therin defectiff to punyssh theym after their demerites after the 
forme and effecte of Statutes therof made in like maner and forme as 
they shuld and ought to be punysshed if they were therof convycte 
after the due ordre of the lawe. And over that be yt also ordygned 
by thauctorite aforseid that the Justices of the Peas of every Shire of 
this Bealme for the tyme beyng may do take by ther discressions an 
enquest, whereof every man shall have lands and tenementes to the 
yerly value of xl. s. at the leest, to enquere of the concelementes of 
other enquests taken afore theym and afore other, of such maters and 
offences as ar to be enquered and presented afore Justices of the Peas 
wheroff complaynt shall be made by bill or billes aswell within 
fraunches as without ; and yff eny such concelement be found of any 
enquest as is afore rehersed had or made within the yere afore the 
same concelement, every persone of the same enquest to be amercied 
for the same concelementes by discression of the same Justicez of the 
Peas ; the seid amerciaments to be cessed in playn Sessions.' 

2. Among the objections to the claim of the Star Chamber to be 
recognised as ' a settled ordinary court of justice ' was one pointing 
to the carelessness with which it kept its records. The inference 
drawn by its detractors in the age of James 1 and Charles 1 was, 
according to its historian, apologist, and official representative, 
William Hudson, that it was * only an assembly for a consultation, at 



INTRODUCTION xi 

the King's command, apon some argent occasions/ whose precedents 
were therefore of no binding import, either upon itself or upon any 
ordinary Court. To this argument Hudson replies that ' this negli- 
gence hath crept into the Court of very late time, either in Mr. Mills's 
age, or since the office hath been executed by many deputies, one 
being thrust out by that time he understandeth the duties of the 
place, and another put in altogether unexperienced ; yet in former 
times the judgments before the King and his Council were kept in 
such care and remain in such order, as no records of the kingdom are 
of more use than those remaining in the Tower of London.' ^ 

It is not necessary at this point to discuss the assumption, which 
Hudson maintains throughout his treatise, that the King's Council 
and the Court of the Star Chamber are two names for the same 
tribunal enjoying a continuous vitality from the earliest period of 
English history. It is unfortunately the case, if Hudson's eulogy was 
once justified, that the carelessness of later ages introduced confusion 
where order formerly reigned. Of this fact the present volume is 
witness. Although of recent years some effort has been expended 
upon the reintroduction of order into chaos, some of the case^ 
here printed belong to other reigns, some are pieced together, isolated 
papers belonging to suits of the period of Henry 7 being found 
sorted and indexed as parts of suits belonging to that of Henry 8. 
Examples of this occur in Hewyt and others v. the Mayor and Cor- 
poration of London (p. 89) ; Kebell v. Vernon (p. 180), where the 
whole case is wrongly sorted ; the Abbot v. the Bailiffs of Shrewsbury 
(p. 182) ; and the same case (p. 202), where a petition of the reign of 
Henry 8 is sorted among the papers of Henry 7 ; Colthurst v. the 
Gentlemen of Furnivall's Inn and others (p. 245) ; Furbur v. the 
Principal of Furnivall's Inn and others (p. 247); Colthurst and 
Furbur v. the Principal &c. of Furnivall's Inn (p. 248) ; Butlond and 
others v. Austen and others (p. 262) ; and Straunge v. Kenaston (p. 
274). It is by no means improbable that portions of cases which are 
here incomplete may hereafter be found among the numerous bundles 
of documents which have of late years been sorted together as 
belonging to the reign of Henry 8. But confusion is by no means 
the most deplorable incident in the history of these records. A 
Committee of the House of Lords in 1719 reported the disappear- 
ance of the whole of the Star Chamber decrees.^ We are reduced, 

* ' Treatise of the Court of Star Cham. < S. B. Soargill-Bird, * Guide to Prin- 

ber,* p. 6, printed in * Collectanea Joridica * oipal Classes of Doouments at Beoord 
(1792), vol. ii. pp. 1-240. OfSoe * (1896), p. 198. 



Xii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

therefore, to an occasional glimpse into the subsequent history of 
some matter of dispute upon which to found an inference as to the 
issue of a suit. 

There are a hundred and twenty cases calendared as belonging to 
the reign of Henry 7, and I have noted among the bundles sorted as 
of the reign of Henry 8 about seventeen more. On the other hand, the 
first two cases here printed, of which the first is calendared as of 
the reign of Henry 8 and the second as of the reign of Henry 7, 
belong demonstrably to that of Edward 4, and must therefore 
have been heard before the Council. The third, Parker v. the 
Duke of Sufiblk (p. 15), while it cannot be of later date than 1489, 
may be as early as 1486, and may therefore belong to the reign of 
Bichard 8, and be likewise a case before the Council. The fifth, the 
suit of the Prior of Bath against the Abbot of St. Augustine's, 
Canterbury (p. 20), shews signs of having been originally begun before 
the Council in the reign of Bichard 8, one of its principal documents 
being dated as of the first year of that king. I have printed what 
remains of another suit, sorted among those of Henry 8, which 
belongs to the reign of Henry 7, viz. the Lead Miners of Torkshire 
V. the Merchants of Tork (p. 69). These facts are not stated by way 
of attack upon the diligence or accuracy of officers of the Becord 
Office. It will be seen, in the cases where the real dates of the 
documents are established, that this has been effected by a scrutiny 
of the internal evidence incumbent upon the editor of a selection, but 
not to be looked for from officials who, in the absence of identifying 
dates, are obliged to rely upon primu facte impressions if their work 
is to progress with reasonable rapidity. 

The circumstance that cases obviously heard before the Council 
prior to the date of the statute ' Pro Camera Stellata,* in 1487, are 
here sorted furnishes no argument in the controversy as to the origin 
of the Court known to later times as the Court of the Star Chamber. 
It is indisputable that the clerk of the Council was the clerk of the 
Star Chamber, and that the proceedings of the Star Chamber ran in 
the name of the Council. In the course of the long disputes between 
the abbot and bailiffs of Shrewsbury, which were throughout carried 
on before the Star Chamber, eo nomine, we meet with the signatures 
of Bobert Bydon (p. 198) and of John Mewtis (p. 208), both succes- 
sively clerks of the Council. 

The proportion to the whole of the number of suits in which 
ecclesiastics figure in these pages is very sUghtly in excess of the 
proportion to the whole number distributed among the entire range 



INTRODUCTION XlU 

of cases of the reign of Henry 7. Of the total number of 187 suits 
calendared in the list of cases heard in the Star Chamber in the 
reign of Henry 7 ecclesiastics figure in 86, that is, in 26*2 per cent. 
They are plaintiffs in 16, defendants in 17, and both plaintiffs and 
defendants in 8. Of the total number of 89 cases here published, 
including the magistrates' certificate on p. 284 and excluding the 
petitions of the municipalities of Gloucester and Worcester, ecclesi- 
astics figure in 12, that is, in 80-7 per cent. In 7 of these they are 
plaintiffs, in 8 they are defendants, in 2 they are both plaintiffs and 
defendants. I have not read all the 86 cases above mentioned, the 
printed calendar giving sufficient indication of their contents. Many 
of them concern tithes, a subject in general of no more than local 
interest. The large proportion in the selected cases of bills in which 
ecclesiastics were the plaintiffs is enough to shew that there has been 
no unfair selection in their disfavour. The proportional excess, slight 
though it is, of suits in which ecclesiastics were parties is due to the 
sense that there is much need of light upon the state of the Church 
immediately prior to the Reformation. The justification of the 
dissolution of the monasteries has of late been so ably impugned that 
I selected suits which promised to illustrate these points in preference 
to those between ordinary laymen. One of these, at least. Garter v. 
the Abbot of Malmesbury (pp. 118-129), in addition to these matters 
of ecclesiastical interest, reveals interesting features of bondage and 
enfranchisement at the close of the fifteenth century. It is sufficient 
to say here that this case, that of Culford v. Wotton (pp. 45-49), 
involving the same monastery, and that of the Prior of Bath v. the 
Abbot of St. Augustine's, Canterbury (pp. 20-86), by no means 
present us with the idyllic picture of monastic sanctity so skilfully 
painted by the apologetic talent of Dr. Gasquet. 

The documents have been arranged in order of date. Where the 
date is only assignable within limits, the principle followed, for want 
of a better, has been to print the case in the order in which it would 
have been placed had it indubitably belonged to the earliest date 
assignable. The widest margin is in the case of the attaint of a jury 
by Sir James Hobart, A.6. (p. 18). This might have been in any year 
between Michaelmas Term, 1486, and 1507, during which long period 
Hobart held that office. The only other instance in which it has 
been necessary to allow a conjectural latitude of dates is that of 
Parker v. the Duke of Suffolk (p. 15), which must have been between 
1485 and 1489. In the rest of the cases either the express evidence 
of an indorsement or the incidental mention of some date or fact has 



xiv COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

enabled the identification of the year to which the suit belongs. In 
the snit of the Abbot v. the Bailiffs of Shrewsbury (pp. 178-208) 
there is a slight departure from the order. This case is really com- 
pounded of two suits, the first brought in 1504, the second in 1609. 
As the parties, the matters in dispute, and the evidence are sub- 
stantially the same in both, so that they form in reality one protracted 
litigation, I have judged it better to arrange them accordingly. 

Where several cases belong to the same year the order in which 
they are printed is the order of the law terms in which the earliest 
proceedings were taken. 

It is currently said that the spelling of names runs by no rule at 
this period, and there is much to justify the assertion. On the other 
hand, those who are conversant with the Patent Bolls, especially in 
the case of pardons, and with pleadings in which the identification of 
an individual is a capital point, know that upon occasion medieval 
lawyers could be as exact as any modern, and to prevent mistake 
would introduce a variety of spellings with the prefix ' alias.' In the 
case of Burde v. the Earl of Bath before the Court of Bequests in 
1640 ^ the defendant's plea twice runs * Bychard Burd named indede 
Beard.' I have therefore assumed, in assigning titles to the cases, 
that the parties to a suit respectively knew how to spell their own 
names, at least constructively through their counsel, and have neither 
adopted the spelling of the other side nor that of indorsing clerks. 

a. Great variety exhibits itself in the form of address with 
which the plaintiff prefaces his bill. In the first two cases, which 
were undoubtedly filed for hearing of Edward 4 in Council, this 
variation already discloses itself. The Mayor of Exeter addresses (p. 1) 
' To the Kyng oure Soueraigne lord ' : John Tayllour (p. 6) * To the 
kyng our Souereyne lorde and to the lordys of his most noble Coun- 
cell.' These and in this order are the most numerous forms of address 
prior to the year 1600. After that year the common form is to the 
Chancellor or Lord Keeper, his ecclesiastical titles being given prece- 
dence. In two cases (pp. 209, 268) we have addresses to the Archbishop 
of Canterbury, presumably as Chancellor, and the Lords of the Council. 
In three, beginning with Parker v. the Duke of Suffolk (p. 15, cp. 
p. 162), the Lords of the Council only are addressed, the words ' in the 
Sterre Chamber ' being added in the petition of the Mayor and Cor- 
poration of Gloucester in the year 1606 (p. 209). While the body of 
the petition, ending with the prayer for the summons of the defendant, 
> Seleot Cases in the Ck)urt of Bequests, Selden Society, 1898, p. 52. 



INTRODUCTION XV 

is frequently consistent with the address, it is not always so. In 
Idele V. the Abbot of St. Bennettes Holme (p. 50), addressed to the 
King and Council, the complaint is throughout to the King alone. 
On the other hand, we have cases like Goryng v. the Earl of Northum- 
berland (p. 94) and Pynson and others v. Squyer and others (p. 114), 
where the address is respectively to the King and the Chancellor. In 
the first case the prayer is that the defendant may be called in 
examination of the King in Council ; in the second that he may be 
summoned to appear before them. 

A reference to the wording of the Statute * Pro Camera Stellata ' 
shews that the bill or information of the complaint is to be ' put to 
the seid Chaunceller.' No alternative form is contemplated. Upon 
this point Coke (4 Inst. c. 5, f. 62) remarks that * where that Act 
(8 Hen. 7, c. 1) directeth that the bill of information should be put 
to the Lord Chancellor &c., all bills and informations in that 
Court (the Star Chamber) are continually directed to the King's 
Majesty, as they were before the said Act.' This has been seen to 
be literally true of the first case here published, that of the Mayor &c. 
of Exeter t\ Stoden and others (p. 1), and constructively true of the 
second case, Tayllour v. Att Well (p. G), * the lordys of his most noble 
Councell * being added to the address to the Sovereign. Both of 
these cases were unquestionably prior to the Act of 1487. But the 
second of the Abbot of Shrewsbury's cases, heard in 1509, in which 
the Court of the Star Chamber is mentioned eo nomine as the 
tribunal by which it was tried (p. 189), is addressed, conformably 
to the Act, to the Archbishop of Canterbury as Chancellor (ib.). 
Similarly the bill of complaint of Hewyt and others against the 
Mayor &c. of London in 1500 is addressed to the Bishop of Salisbury, 
Lord Keeper (p. 71). The plaintiff in Treherne r. Harecourt in 1503 
appears to address himself to the * Kynges most honorable Councell 
in his Starre Chamber * (p. 162). The petitions of the Mayors Jkc. 
of Gloucester and the Bailiffs &c. of Worcester (pp. 209, 213) stand 
on a different footing from the others. By the Act 19 Henry 7, c. 18, 
§ 3 (* De Fluvio Sabrini'), corporations &c. desirous of proving their 
title to tolls on the Severn are specifically directed to appear * before 
the Lordis of the Kynges honorable Counseill in the Sterre Cham))er 
at Westminster,' and Whyte, the opponent of the claims of the Corpo- 
ration of Gloucester, naturally followed this direction (p. 225). 

The other instances in which the Star Chamber is mentioned eo 
nomine as the tribunal of hearing are the Abbot of Eynesham v. 
Harecourt and others (p. 187), where the address follows the form 



XVI COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

prescribed by Coke ; and the Master (William Grocyn) and Brethren 
of All Saints College, Maidstone, v. Kempe (p. 271), which does the 
same. Excluding the three instances having reference to the Severn 
tolls for the reasons given, we have five cases, in which there is no 
possible doubt that the Court of Star Chamber was the adjudicating 
tribunal, tried after the Act of 1487 ; yet in only two of these five 
is the petition addressed to the Chancellor, in conformity with the 
explicit direction of that Act. Neither, on the other hand, is the 
form prescribed by Coke, an address to the King, followed in more 
than two cases. Coke, in short, infers the practice of the fifteenth 
and sixteenth centuries from that of his own day. This is the more 
surprising in that the Act 81 Hen. 6, c. 2, temporarily legalising 
writs of Privy Seal against rioters, recites that they have been 
customarily issued with a summons * to appear before him (the King) 
in his Chancery or before him and his Council.' 

b. It is noteworthy that in the three consolidated cases in which one 
Broke was defendant (pp. 38-45), heard in 1494, the indorsement of the 
writ to be issued is * coram domino rege.' This indorsement is, however, 
remarkable in another point. It runs, as originally written, * coram 
domino Rege vbicunque fuerit infra x dies post visum literarum * (p. 42). 
Interlined, apparently in substitution for the first four words, are these : 

* apud Westmonasterium crastino purificacionis.' It is with the original 
form that we are concerned. It carries us back at least to the age of 
John,^ when the King was holding Court with a body of attendant 
judges as he made his progresses through the kingdom. The rolls of 
that part of the Curia Regis, which subsequently became known as the 
King's Bench, were styled the * Coram Rege rolls,' and summoned the 
litigant to appear * before us wheresoever we shall be in England.' ^ 
That part of the Curia Regis which eventually became the judicial 
body known as * The King in Council ' necessarily retained the formula 

* ubicunque &c.' after the Curia Regis in its more limited sense was 
stationary at Westminster. Of the twin prerogative Courts, the 
Court of Requests and the Court of the Star Chamber, the Court of 
Requests continued during the reign of Henry 7 to issue writs 
with the clause * ubicunque &c.' ^ though without the words * coram 
Rege.' After its settlement by Wolsey in the White Hall of the palace 
of Westminster, it frequently added to * coram consilio domini Regis ' 

* For references to the discussion of * P. and M. 'Hist. Eng. Law,' i. 177. 

the antiquity of this formula see Professor E. Coke, 4 Inst. 76. 

F. W. Maitland's preface to ' Select Pleas of ' See ' Select Cases in the Court of 

the Crown ' (Selden Soc. 1887), p. xiii, n. 3. Requests,' pp. 2, 8, Seldon Soc. 1898. 



INTRODUCTION XVll 

the words ' apud Westmonasterium ' ^ and occasionally made its writs 
returnable * coram consilio domini Eegis in le Whight halle.' ^ The more 
important Court, that known as the Star Chamber, did not issue writs of 
summons * ubicunque/ but frequently retained the words * Coram Rege 
et Concilio suo,' as we see in the cases of Carter v. the Abbot of Malmes- 
bury (p. 121), the Abbot v. the Bailiffs of Shrewsbury (p. 208), Powe 
V. Newman (p. 229), Butlond and others v. Austen (p. 265), and Jones 
V. Lychfeld (p. 276). The words * Coram Eege et Concilio suo * are in 
the first, second, and last of the above cases followed by the words 

* apud Westmonasterium.' These words are absent from the indorse- 
ments of Butlond and others v. Austen (p. 265), and Powe v. Newman 
(p. 229) . But that from their absence it must not be inferred that they 
were cases heard before the Council and not before the Star Chamber 
appears from the fact that we have express evidence to the contrary in 
the case of Butlond ifec. v. Austen (p. 264, n. 10).^ Other writs and 
indorsements are simply * apud Westmonasterium * in the cases of 
Couper r. Gervaux (p. 88), and Halle r. Essexe (p. 174); 'Coram 
dominis de consilio nostro in Camera Stellata,' in the writ issued on 
the petition of the Bailiffs of Worcester (p. 217) ; * Coram Consilio 
Regis apud Westmonasterium ' in Straunge t\ Kenaston (p. 275) ; 

* coram Domino Rege et Consilio suo apud Westmonasterium ' in Jones 
V. Lychfeld (p. 276). In the time of James 1 the writ was returnable 

* Coram Domino Rege in Camera Stellata coram consilio ibidem.' ^ 
But Hudson gives one of the same reign returnable * coram Nobis et 
dicto Concilio nostro apud Westmonasterium.' "^ These facts seem to 
point to the significance of the indorsement in Smyth r. Broke as being 
that the cause was originally brought in the King's Court of Requests 
and thence remitted to the Star Chamber. This would account for the 
clause * ubicunque.' That it was not a petition presented to Henry 7 
on a progress is probable from his Itinerary as shewn by his Privy 
Purse expenses. It thence appears that on January 26, anno 9 (1494), 
he was at Thistel worth (Isle worth), having arrived at Windsor on the 
preceding day from Minster Level in Oxfordshire, and at Thistelworth 
he remained until January 31, when he travelled to Westminster.'* 

' * Select CaBesin the Court of Requests,' Chamber case). The form on p. 218 repre- 

pp. 40, 41, 46, 198. Selden Soc. 1898. sents a later stage in the evolution of the 

^ lb. p. 176. Or * coram consilio Star Chamber as a tribunal distinguish - 

domini Begis (in) le Whyte halle apud able from the Council. 
Westmonasterium,' ib. p. 190. * Apparently per Ellesmere, C, in 1606. 

" In the case of Carter v. the Abbot of See J. Hawarde, ' Les lieports ' <&c., p. 302. 
Malmesburj a ' Dedimus Potestatem 'for * ' Treatise of the Court of Star Cham- 

the examination of. a witness was issued ber,' p. 145. 

with the clause ' ubicunque ' (see p. 122, ' ' Excerpta Uistorioa ' (1831), p. 26. 

n. 7, where reasons are given for the con- Privy Purse expenses of Henry 7. 



elusion that this was nevertheless a Star 



a 2 



xvili COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

The litigants in that case were inhabitants of Castle Bromwich, 
Warwickshire. 

There is, however, one case here printed in which a writ in the 
form of ' ubicunque fuerit * would have appropriately responded to the 
prayer of the bill. That is the case of Goryng r. the Earl of Northum- 
berland, in which the plaintiff petitions the King *to do calle in 
examinacion before you and your most honourable counseill at suche 
day and place as it shal please your grace to appoincte in this your 
progi-esse and journey the said matier' (p. 98). Very unfortunately, 
the indorsement^ which is on the replication, is illegible. But the 
form of the prayer points to the exercise of the old judicial authority 
of the King in Council at a period certainly posterior to the Act 
' Pro Camera Stellata.' 

c. Hudson raises the question whether the filing of the Bill or the 
issue of the Writ should be the first step. He justly observes that the 
words of the Subpoena * import the Bill to be filed before the Writ 
granted ; for it is " quibusdam certis de causis coram nobis et concilio 
nostro expositis," which is matter contained in the Bill.' The history 
of procedure given by him is, briefly, as follows : that at a later date 
it became the practice * to have the process before the Bill ' ; that this 
having given rise to the issue of subpoenas by solicitors in distant 
parts of the kingdom, by way of blackmail, Lord Chancellor Ellesmere 

* did enjoin Bills to be filed before any process were awarded,' and 
after his death (1617) the practice suppressed by him was revived.* 

So far as can be inferred from the few indorsements here printed, 
Hudson's argument from the words of the Subpoena is sustained. The 
issue of * breuia sub privato sigillo ' in the case of Couper r. Gervaux 
is * prout petitur * (p. 38). The indorsement in the Bishop of Worcester 
against Thomas and others (p. 231) is not clear, but from that of 
Straunge v. Kenaston (p. 275) it is apparent that the Writ was issued 
upon the filing of the Bill. Indeed, the prayers throughout assume 
that the appearance is to be made to answer the case already stated. 

* To answer to the premisses ' is the common form, and conformably 

* Hudson, p. 143. It would seem that Cancellarie frequentancium recipint et in 

the idea of issuing process before bill filed filum cancellarie imponat.' G. W. Sanders, 

was, so far as the Court of Chancery was Chancery Orders (1846), 7 d. Similarly in 

concerned, at least as old as the reign of Chancery ' in ancient times the Subpoena 

Henry 5. An Order in Chancery of that was not issued unless the case stated in the 

reign lays down : • Quod nullus scribens ad bill was considered to warrant it, and the 

sigillum primum processum (videlicet) breve Chancellor sometimes took the advice of 

de subpena ad comparandum {sic) conficiat the judges on the subject.' G. Sponco, 

et ad sigillum producat priusquam billam * Equitable Jurisdiction ' (1846), i. 3()9. 
cum manu unius Consiliariorum barram 



INTRODUCTION xix 

to this the indorsements convey the impression, where they do not 
actually so state, that they are subsequent to the Bill. 

The titles of the plaintiffs statement of his case are ' Bill ' and 
' Bill of complaint/ generally the latter. In one instance, the state- 
ment of defence in Smyth v. Broke, it is called a ' bill of peticipn ' 
(p. 48). 

Hudson's chapter (Part III. § vii.), * Of the process whereby appear- 
ance is required,' discloses that in his time the original significance of 
the different forms of Process was lost. ' In antient times, when com- 
plaint was made either of some notable outrage or fraud to the King, 
the Lord Chancellor, or Council (sometimes the King) by letters 
missive commanded the delinquent to answer in the Star Chamber. 
Sometimes any of the Council to whom the complaint was made sent 
for the offender and took him by recognizance to appear in the Star 
Chamber ; which course is yet usual. Sometimes the Lord Chancellor 
sent a serjeant-at-arms to admonish them to appear ; sometimes a 
messenger of the King's chamber served the Privy Seal ; sometimes 
a Subpoena was awarded to be served by the party and his servant ; 
and all these kinds of summons or original process I find in the 
records of Hen. 7 and Hen. 8.' He also shews that though in the time 
of Charles 1, the period at which he writes, peers demanded as a pri- 
vilege a summons by Letters Missive, the other forms enumerated were 
in use in their case during the first half of the sixteenth century. 

The distinction between Letters Missive and a Privy Seal was that 
Letters Missive were under the King's signet, while letters of Privy 
Seal issued from the office of the Keeper of the Privy Seal. Letters 
Missive had, therefore, a more personal and private character.^ 
Hudson tells us that * the great peers of the realm do deny to appear 
upon the ordinary service,' which appears to be Subpoena, * but require 
letters of summons, like Letters Missive, from the Lord Chancellor or 
Lord Keeper, which certainly, for all latter times, have been yielded 
unto for their dignities. And yet I find in Hen. 7's time a privy seal 
was served upon the Earl of Kent to appear in this court ; and in 
3 Hen. 8 the Lord of Abergavenny warned by the serjeant-at-arms to 
appear ; and in 11 Hen. 8 the Lord Ogle was committed for a con- 
tempt in breaking a privy seal directed unto him, and divers lords 
bound over to appear by recognizance ; so that I doubt the antiquity 
of this grace (if it be so esteemed) ; the King's broad seal being as 
honourable as the Lord Chancellor's letter, but only that the other is 

' See Sir H. Nicolas, Preface to Proceedings Ac. of Privy Council (1837), vi. p. cxlvii 
(&c., and £. Coko, 2 Inst. 554-6. 



XX COUKT OF THE STAR CHAMHER 

a more singular course, differing from the common sort of people. 
His next sentence incidentally indicates in what, in his time, the 
essential distinction lay. ' The privy seal, or subpoena for appearance 
which I take to be all one), is of one and the same form for all ' 
(p. 144). It may, perhaps, be inferred therefore that what was 
particularly objected to on the part of the peers was a summons to 
appear with a penalty expressed upon default. 

It will be observed that in this passage Hudson speaks of the 
process of the Court of Star Chamber as issuing under the Broad or 
Great Seal, whereas elsewhere he, as well as Mill and Cotton, who 
were also both clerks of the Court, habitually speaks of it as issuing 
under Privy Seal. Coke, on the other hand, says: * All the writs 
and processe of the court are under the great seal ' ; ^ and again, 
more specifically : ' The processe in this court is suppoena, attachment, 
processe of rebellion, &c., all under the great seal.* " 

The explanation of this seeming contradiction is that, while the 
statements of all the writers are true, the three clerks speak as 
officials of the Court and Coke as a lawyer. In the * Articuli super 
Chartas,' c. Q,^ the sixth chapter laid down that ' there shall no writ 
from henceforth, that toucheth the common law, go forth under the 
petty seal ' (desouth le petit seale). This was the seal which, as Coke 
tells us, was 'after this time called the privie seale.' Coke notes 
upon the above chapter : * This act saith not that all writs which 
concerne the common law shall passe under the great seale ; but no 
writs shall pass under the privie seale which touch the common law.' * 
Accordingly, the Council, in the exercise of its indeterminate juris- 
diction, continued to issue writs and letters of Privy Seal com- 
manding appearance with a penalty expressed. In reply to a petition 
of the Commons in 1401 complaining of this Henry 4 replied that 
such writs should not thenceforth be issued, except at discretion of the 
Chancellor or of the King's Council.' -' This reply conceded nothing, and 
the preamble to 31 Hen. 6, c. 2 (1453), reads as if the former practice 
continued. It recites that, for the suppression of the riots and 
crimes there set forth, the King ' ad done en commaundement auxibien 
par ses briefs desoubz son grande seall come par sez lettres de prive 
seall dapparoer devaunt luy en sa Chauncerie ou devaunt luy & son 
dit Counsaill.' This suggests that at this time the Council issued 
letters of Privy Seal without the Chancellor's consent. Nevertheless, 
this interpretation is doubtful, especially in view of what we know to 

' 4 Inst. c. 5 ; ' The Court of Star Chamber,' f. 04. '' lb. f. 66. 

» Anno 28 Ed. 1 (1300). See Coke, 2 Inst. c. 6, f. 555. 
* lb. * Rot. Pari. iii. 471, b. 



INTRODUCTION XXI 

have been the later practice of the Star Chamber.^ It is suggested, 
therefore, that the discretion of the Chancellor was signified in the 
afl&rmative after 1401 by passing writs &c. of Privy Seal under the 
Great Seal, and that in this, as in other matters of procedure, the 
Court of Star Chamber followed the precedent of the Council. Upon 
this practice in the Court of Star Chamber in the reign of Charles 1 
Hudson is as explicit as Coke. * The duty,' he writes,^ * of the 
process maker or clerk of the process ... is to write all process of 
Subpoena ^ for appearances, costs, or damages, all attachments, com- 
missions of rebellion and commissions for examination of defendants 
or witnesses, habeas corpus, certiorari, writs of extent, and all other 
writs whatsoever which are returnable in this court or issue from 
thence ; all which he bringeth to the Great Seal to be sealed ; and for 
all these he receiveth his warrant from the clerk of the Court.' This 
sufficiently explains Coke's statements and Hudson's phrase. 

Although, doubtless, in Hudson's time, a Subpcena was attached 
to every writ of Privy Seal, the two forms of process were not neces- 
sarily united, a summons for appearance under Privy Seal, whether 
it took the more mandatory form of a writ (breve), or that of a letter 
(litere),* at first expressed no penalty. The writ ran in the form called 
by the Commons in a petition of 1389 * brief Quibusdam certis de 
causis ' (Eot. Pari. iii. 267). An example is printed by Palgrave in 
the appendix to his Essay upon the Original Authority of the King's 
Council (p. 132) from Eot. Claus. 20 Ed. 3, p. 2, m. 4, d, as 
follows : ' De essendo coram consilio Regis. Bex, Eicardo capellano 
uxoris Johannis de Grymmestede chivaler, salutem. Quibusdam 
certis de causis coram consilio nostro propositis, tibi prsecipimus firmi- 
ter injungentes quod omnibus aliis prsetermissis, sis in propria persona 
tua coram dicto consilio nostro in cancellaria nostra, et ad faciendum 
ulterius et recipiendum quod curia nostra consideraverit in hac parte. 
Et habeas ibi hoc breve. Teste custode &c. apud Eltham xxvi die 
Decembris. Per consilium.' ^ The history of the Subpoena is told in 

> See p. xxiii and n. 1, infra. in tone of these two forms of process is 

^ ' Of the Court of Star Chamber,' p. 47. suggested by a resolution passed in Parlia- 

i » There appear to have been six Sub- ment in 1387, that a letter of Privy Seal 

I poenas — Ad eomparendum. Ad faciendum be sent to the Master of Prussia (al mestre 

I meliorem responsionem. Ad rejungendum, de Pruys) asking redress (Kot. Pari. iii. 

Ad audiendum judicium, Ad solvendum i 254, a) ; while in 1389 the Commons prayed 

custag(ia), Ad solvendum damnum (W. Mill | for the issue of a writ (Brief du Prive 

in B. M. Hargr. MS. 21G, f. 177). Each of ; Seal du Boy) against the Constable and 

these cost a fee of 25. and the writ one of . Marshal of England, whose Courts they 

28. 6d. (ib.) This was in 1598. There is ' charged with encroachment on the com- 

also a list of fees in * Camera Stellata,* i mon law. Ib. 265, a. 

Heame's ' Curious Discourses * (1771), p. * Other writs of summons issued from 

305. the Chancery may be seen in SoVct Cases 

* A curious example of the difference in Chancery (Seld. i:30c 1896). 



XXll COURT OF TILE STAR CHAMBER 

a petition of the Commons in 1416. It sets forth that * as divers of 
your realm feel themselves greatly grieved, because of your writs 
called writs sub poena and certis de causis, made and sued out of your 
Chancery and Exchequer concerning matters determinable by your 
common law/ which never were granted nor used before the time of 
the late King Richard ; that John Waltham, late bishop of Salisbury, 
of his subtlety caused such novelty to be found and commenced 
against the form of the common law of your realm.* After .dwelling 
on the loss to the Exchequer arising from the new process, the fee for 
the issue of a writ of subpoena being no more than 6d., the Commons 
prayed that the issue of such process might in future avoid the pro- 
ceedings in respect of which such issue took place, as well as the 
process itself. The petition was refused (Rot. Pari. iv. 84). The in- 
vention of the writ dates back to the end of the reign of Edward 8, 
when John de Waltham, who in 5 Richard 2 (Sept. 8, 1381) became 
Master of the Rolls, held an inferior place in the Chancery (Palgrave, 
'Essay,' p. 41). 2 

A comparison of one of the earliest writs of Subpoena, belonging 
to the year 1368, with the ancient writ ' Quibusdam certis de causis ' 
discloses in addition to the sub poena clause the insertion of three 
words * ex parte nostra ' which may be taken to have formed the 
foundation upon which a large part of the pretensions of the Court 
were subsequently reared, whether by the servility of the lawyers of 
the Jacobean age or of their predecessors under the Tudors is as yet 
uncertain. Hudson is never weary of insisting that in the Court of 
the Star Chamber the suitor is the King, though this doctrine is not 
easily reconcilable with his admission that the King may also be 
defendant (p. 139). Accordingly, in defining the jurisdiction of the 
Court, he says : * The causes there handled are either public or private, 
and they are respectively either civil or criminal. . . . Civil causes 
are here properly determinable civilly, which are of two sorts, ordi- 
nary or extraordinary ; ordinarily the suits of the King's almoner ; 

* The objections to the writ of Subpoena for as moche as it is not so, it is a writ 

are set forth in the Tract of the time of abused in my mynde contrarie to the 

Henry 8. * Concerning suits in Chancery by common la we of the real me and contrary 

Subpoena, Part 1.' (F. Hargrave, Collec- to reason and all good conscience, and yet 

tion of Law Tracts [1787], p. 327.) ' If a is coloured by the pretence of conscience.' 
subpoena had bin a writ ordained by the '^ The main dates in the life of John de 

lawe of the realme to reforme a wronge, as Waltham, the year of his birth being un- 

other writs in the saide booke (Natura known, are -Master of the Rolls Sept. 8, 

Brcvium) be, he shold have bin set in the 1381-()ct. 24, 1380 ; Keeper of the Privy 

booke of Natura Brevium and the nature Seal, Oct. 24, 1380 ; Bishop of Salisbury, 

of him declared there, and for the reforma- April 3, 1388 ; died Sept. 17, 1395. ' Diet, 

tion of what wronge it layeth, as it is in the Nat. Biog.' 
writs contayned in the saide booke: and 



INTRODUCTION XXIII 

and extraordinarily, other great matters of interest betwixt the King 
and his subject, which are accompanied with conveniency to tte state, 
as well as meum and tuum * (p. 49). Hudson, however, as will pre- 
sently be seen, derives this conclusion from the indorsement in use 
upon the writs of his own day. As that indorsement does not appear 
on those of the age of Henry 7, it follows that its origin must be 
looked for elsewhere, and it is easily discernible in the writ itself as 
presumably altered by John de Waltham. Such a writ, belonging to 
the year 1363, and issuing upon a bill or petition addressed to the 
King and Council, runs as follows : — 

* Edwardus &c. dilecto sibi Kicardo Spynk de Norwyco, salutem. 
Quibusdam certis de causis, tibi prascipimus firmiter injungentes 
quod sis coram consilio nostro apud Westmonasterium die Mercurii 
proximo post quindenam nativitatis Sancti Johannis BaptistsB 
proximo futuraB ad respondendum super hiis que tibi objicientur 
ex parte nostra, et ad faciendum et recipiendum quod curia nostra 
consideraverit in hac parte. Et hoc sub poena centum librarum 
nuUatenus omittas. Teste meipso apud Westmonasterium tercio die 
Julii anno regni nostri tricesimo septimo &c.' Bot. Fat. 38 Ed. 3,' 
p. 1, m. 15 ; Palgrave, p. 41, n. 

In the reign of Henry 4 a significant change was introduced 
testifying to the increasing importance of the House of Commons. 
Having failed in their repeated endeavours to abolish the authority 
of the Council in matters litigious, they sought to accomplish the 
same end by insisting on an indorsement expressing the assent and 
request of the Commons as indispensable to any bill preferred by a 
litigant (Rot. Pari. iv. 127, 8 Hen. 5). It appears from this peti- 
tion that bills before the Council were then indorsed * by authority 
of Parliament.' Palgrave (p. 75) prints a Subpoena of November 
24, Hen. 4 (1402), which expresses this on the face by the addition 
after * consilio nostro ' of the words * in presenti parliamento.' 
It is also to be observed that the words * ex parte nostra ' are 
omitted and * coram nobis ' inserted. This writ runs as follows : 
* Henricus Dei gratia Rex Angliae et Pranciae et Dominus HiberniaB 
Ancelmo Gyse salutem. Quibusdam certis de causis coram nobis 
et consilio nostro in presenti parliamento propositis, tibi praB- 
cipimus firmiter injungentes quod omnibus aliis praeter missis et 
excusacione quacumque cessante in propria persona tua sis coram 
nobis et consilio nostro apud Westmonasterium in octabis Sancti 
Hillarii proximo futuri ad respondendum super hiis qu8B tibi 
* This woald be under the Great Seal. Cp. p. xx, supra. 



XXIV COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

objicientar tunc ibidem, et ad faciendum ulterius et recipiendum 
quod per nos et dictum consilium nostrum super prsemissis conti- 
gerit ordinari. Et hoc sub pcena trecentarum librarum nuUatenus 
omittas. Teste me ipso apud Westmonasterium xxiiij. die Novembris 
anno regni nostri quarto. Per petitionem in parliamento. Rome.' ^ 

Without prejudging the question of the relation of the Court of 
the Star Chamber to the statute of 1487 (3 Hen. 7, c. 1), it is 
undeniable, as Hudson insists, that its forms followed those of the 
Council^ as a body exercising judicial functions, and ran in the 
Council's name. When the words * in parliamento nostro ' were 
omitted in the case of petitions which had been filed during the 
sitting of Parliament does not appear. The change in the next 
summons of * et ' into * in * (* coram nobis in concilio ' &c.) was perhaps 
made in exaltation of the prerogative, and the ' per nos et dictum 
consilium ' of the writ of 1402, which involves the notion of the 
King as a judge, supports the claim which James 1 advanced and 
exercised, as Hudson tells us, to sit and act as judge in the court. 
The writ in that king's day ran as follows : * Jacobus Dei gratia &c. 
Quibusdam certis de causis coram nobis in concilio nostro propositib 
&c. tibi prsBcipimus, firmiter injungentes, quod omnibus aliis pr©- 
termissis et excusatione quacunque cessante, in propria persona tua 
sis coram nobis et conciUo nostro apud Westmonasterium in Octabis 
Michaelis proxime futuri ad respondendum ulterius quod per nos et 
dictum concilium nostrum consideratum fuerit in hac parte ; et hoc 
sub poena centum librarum; et habeas ibi hoc breve. Teste &c.' 
This writ, he goes on to tell us, was indorsed with the plaintiffs 
name as follows : * J. D. sequitur hoc breve,' * by which it appeareth 
that the suit is the King's and the grieved party but the prosecutor, 
for otherwise his name and cause should be specified in the writ as in 
all writs at the common law, viz. Praecipe A. B. quod reddat C. D. 
£20 quas ei debet et injuste detinet, &c.' (Hudson, p. 145). 

In the cases contained in this volume we have very little evidence 
to show what were the relations between the form of process and the 
rank of the delinquent. There are five in which the defendant was a 
lord of Parliament. They are the Duke of Suffolk (p. 15), the Abbot 
of St. Augustine's, Canterbury (p. 20), the Abbot of St. Bennettes 
Holme (p. 60), the Earl of Northumberland (p. 96), and the Abbot of 

' John Borne, clerk of the Paxliamert, as the Court of the Star Chamber from the 

the indorsement tells us. Palgrave, p. 75. Council, the chief judicial person. See 

'^ And, as might be expected, of the O. Spence, ' Equitable Jurisdiction of the 

Chancery also, the Lord Chancellor being Court of Chancery ' (1846), ch. vi. 
in all three Courts, if we may distinguish 



INTRODUCTION XXV 

Malmesbury (p. 118), who was also treated by the Court as a 
defendant, although not nominally such, in the case of Culford v. 
Wotton (p. 47). In the instances of the Duke and the Abbot of St. 
Bennettes Holme the petitioners do not venture to specify the 
precise form of process which they desire should be issued. The 
answer of the Abbot of St. Augustine's, Canterbury, seems to indicate 
that he had been served with the document known as a * Privy Seal ' 
(p. 20). In Carter v. the Abbot of Malmesbury, the plaintiff, Carter, 
asks for the issue of a Subpoena (p. 121). There is no indorsement 
recording that he got it ; but in the case of Culford v. Wotton the 
Court proprio motu ordered the issue of * litere sub poena ' to the same 
Abbot, as head of the house of which the defendant was a brother 
(p. 47). Since the prayer of the complainant in Carter v. the Abbot of 
Malmesbury cannot be taken as conclusive of the practice of the 
Court, we are reduced for our knowledge of the form of process issued 
against lords of Parliament to this last example. We have also the 
indorsement in Culford v. Wotton (p. 47), where the word * litere' 
may be interpreted ' Letters of Privy Seal.' 

If, therefore, the form of process was not in the early Tudor period 
determined by the rank of the defendant, did it depend upon the 
quaUty of the act which brought him before the Court? To this 
question the cases before us scarcely afford an answer. In a large 
proportion the plaintiffs pay for redress in general terms without 
specifying the process they desire to issue. Assuming the judicial 
power of the King in Council to have originated from the patriarchal 
dispensation of justice by the King in person sitting, after the manner 
of St. Louis, under a tree, or like our own Henry 4 and Henry 5 
resting upon a cushion after dinner,' arrest by a Serjeant of arms 
would probably be the original form of process, especially in the case 
of flagrantia delicta, such as riot. Now riot appears in most of these 
pleadings, frequently as common form, there being, as more than one 
case shows, an impression that where no riot was alleged a demurrer 
might lie. In some of the cases, on tbe other hand, riot in a popular 
sense and without the minimum connotation legally attachable to the 
term is a substantial ground of complaint. How greatly the form of 
process prayed for varied in these latter cases will best be seen by 
presenting them in parallel columns. 

Name of Case. Process prayed for. 

1. Mayor &c. of Exeter r. Stoden Seriant of Armes (p. 2). 

and others. 

2. Joyfull V. Warcoppe. * Lettres of priue Seal ' (p. 106). 

' ' Stow^B Annals/ 342 ; Palgrave, p. 79, n. 



XXVI 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



Name of Case. 

3. Pynson and others 

others. 

4. Abbot of Eynesham 

and others. 

5. Walterkyn v. Letice. 



6. 



Squyer and 



r. Harecourte 



Bishop of Worcester v. Thomas and 

others. 
Principal of Furnivall's Inn v. John- 
son and others. 
Colthurst v. Gentlemen of Furni- 
vall's Inn. 
9. Furbur r. Principal of Furnivall's 

Inn and others. 
10. Abbot of Byland v. Warcoppe. 



Prooess prayed for. 

Unspecified (p. 116). 

* Writtes of Sub pena * 

(p. 151). 
Seriaunt of Armes (p. 
166). 

* Letters of pryue seale ' 

(p. 281). 
Unspecified (p. 240). 



8. 



11. Straunge v. Eenaston. 



* Sergeant of Armes ' (p. 
247). 

* Sergeant of armes ' (p. 
248). 

* Writ of sub pena ' (p. 
258). 

'Letturs of privey seale' 
(p. 275). 
The only other case in which the dispatch of a Serjeant of arms 
is prayed is in that of Hewyt and others v. the Mayor and Corpora- 
tion of London, where the plaintiff desires a prompt surrender of his 
unjustly confiscated goods (p. 72). If Letters of Privy Seal and 
Writs of Subpoena may be identified, this review suggests that 
although generally ousted by the more pacific process, the ghost of 
the Serjeant of arms still lingered,^ to be invoked where the summary 



' In the fourteenth century the Serjeant 
of arms was a very formidable personage 
whose abuse of authority was the subject 
of repeated remonstrances by the Commons. 
This points to his being regarded as the 
peculiar instnmient for enforcing the dis- 
puted powers of the Council. In 1368 John 
de la Lee was impeached because being 
steward of the King's household he caused 
divers persons to be bodily arrested, some 
by Serjeants of arms and some by another 
way (par autre voie) and to be brought 
before liimself as before the King's Coimcil ' 
(Rot. Pari. ii. 297, 22; 42 E. 3 [1368]). 
In 1386 the Commons protested against 
the insupportable number of serjeants of 
arms, 'qui font grant oppression et ex- 
torsions par colour de lour oftices a la 
poeple,' and petitioned that their number 
might be reduced to its former limits (Hot. 
Pari. iii. 223, a ; 10 Rio. 2 [1386]). Nothing 
appears to have been done, and in 1389 
the Commons prescribe twenty-four as the 



number of ancient custom. They further 
demanded that they should be paid regular 
wages, to prevent the commission by them 
of * grantz extorsions ct oppressions iil 
poeple.' The King replied that they should 
be reduced to thirty and forbidden ex- 
tortion Ac (ib. 265; 13 Ric. 2 [1389J). 
In 1394 he was requested to carry his 
promise into effect (ib. 318, b). Like com- 
plaints were repeated in 1397 (ib. 354, a ; 
21 Ric. 2). That the process changed 
or the number really had been superfluous 
appears probable from the fact that after 
this date such complaints cease. The ' ser- 
jeant-at-arms ' still survives on paper as an 
officer of the Court of Chancer/ whose func- 
tion it is to attach a defend.. at upon the 
return by a sheriff of ' non est inventus.' 
But this is practically obsolete. See Dunicll's 
* Chancery Practice ' (7th ed. 1901), i. 713 ; 
H. W. Seton, 'Judgments and Orders ' (6th 
ed. 1901), i. 448. 



INTRODUCTION XXVll 

suppression of rioters or speedy restitation was thought to be 
demanded by the circumstances. That the serjeant of arms was not 
merely a bearer of Writs or Letters of Privy Seal appears from the 
prayer in Walterkyn v. Letice (p. 166), which requests the grant of 

* your gracioux lettres of priue Seale to be directed ' to the defendants 

* or a seriaunt of Armes or sum other commaundement them and 
euery of them straitly commaunding by the same to appere ' &c. 
This inference is confirmed by the passage above quoted from Hudson, 
stating that * the Privy Seal 'was served by messengers of the King's 
chamber.* 

The indorsements, which are not numerous, tend in favour of the 
identification of the other forms of process at this date. In Couper v. 
Gervaux (p. 88) we read of the issue of * breuia sub priuato sigillo 
. . . sub poena,' xl. li. In Smyth v. Broke, * litere ' have been 
issued * sub poena,' Ix. li. (p. 42). The defendant in this case was 
of no such social standing as to be entitled to the issue of * litere ' in 
lieu of * brevia.' The issue of * litere sub poena ' against the Abbot of 
Malmesbury in Culford v. Wotton (p. 47) has already been noticed. 

* Decretum est Privatum Sigillum ' and * retornabile . . . sub poena 
. . . c. marcarum ' are .two notes in Mayne and others v. Gibbes and 
others (p. 130), the first an indorsement, the second on the face of 
the document. They indicate, though they do not prove, that ' a 
Privy Seal * implied a Subpoena. Lastly, the prayer in Straunge v. 
Kenaston (p. 275) for * letturs of privey seale ' and the indorsed notifi- 
cation of the issue of a Subpoena under Privy Seal seem to complete 
the identification. What Hudson stated to be true of his time may 
be taken as true of that of Henry 7. They, the Privy Seal and 
Subpoena, were *all one,'^ and apparently issued without respect 
either to the persons of the parties or the substance of the matter 
charged. 

' This is supported to some extent by a adonqes illeoqes esteant.' But this was a 

passage in Rot. Pari. iii. 439, b (1 Hen. 4 case in which forcible resistance might 

[1399]), where the Commons petition for have been anticipated. So a bill filed in 

an inquiry ' combien les pourtours des Chancery, temp. Hen. 6, complaining of 

Lettres le Boy & Clercs & Sergeantz violent outrage on the part of the de- 

d 'Armes pur arrester Niefs pur viage le fendant, prays the Chancellor ' to comound 

Roy, ount pris en brocage & en douns.' a sergeant of armez to bryng hym before 

This seems to imply that the King's the kynge in his chauncerie ' ' Cal. of 

messengers were a class distinct from the Proc. in Chanc. Bee. Comm.' (1827), p. 

Serjeants of arms. On the other hand, in xlviii. Izaacke Cotton, a clerk of the Court, 

the impeachment of Thomas Mortymer writing in 1622 says, • The messengers of 

in 21 Ric. 2 (Rot. Pari iii. 380, b [1397]), this Court are the Marshalls men or a 

it is mentioned that the King * avoit en- Sorieant at Arms.' B. M. Lansd. MSS. 639, 

voiez ses maundements par Edward Dee f. 144. 

un de ses Serjeantz d'Armes en sa Terre '^ ' Of the Star Chamber,' p. 144. 
d'Irland, directz a dit Thomas Mortymer 



XXVlll COURT OF THE STAR CHAM HER 

d. After the service of the Subpcena or other Bummons the defen- 
dant made appearance conformably to the prayer of the bill and to 
the terms of the process. In the time of Henry 7 appearance was, 
according to Hudson, in person before the Court. * Then must he 
(the defendant) enter into a bond not to depart without licenpe of the 
Court which, in antient times, was done upon every appearance, and 
in those days most commonly with sureties to appear a die in diem, 
which was long time used, but now never used but upon great cause ' 
(ibid. p. 159). There are no records of this proceeding among these 
documents, probably because of the loss of the Order Books of the 
Court.* But the Order Books of the sister Court, the Court of 
Requests, are preserved, and an example will illustrate the procedure. 
In the case of the Mayor and Citizens of Exeter against John Bony- 
fant, heard in 1499, the indorsement on the petition shows that it 
was filed on November 18, 1498. From the Order Book we learn that 
the defendant appeared on February 10, 1499, which, remarkable to 
say, was a Sunday, and was ordered to appear and put in his answer 
by the following Monday. These being the days of the week, we may 
perhaps conjecture that having been, in the previous November, 
ordered by inadvertence to appear upon February 10, probably so 
many days after the Feast of the Purification of Our Lady (February 2), 
he appeared on the first Court day after, the 10th being a holyday, 
and was granted a week within which to file his answer, his appear- 
ance being dated as conformably to order to save the penalty. This 
agrees with Hudson*s statement that ' the defendants have eight days 
to frame and bring in their answer into the Court' (p. 161), i.e. into 
the Court of Star Chamber. The order runs that the defendant has 
appeared under the Subpcena of 1002., has till the Monday following 
to file an answer and to appear * et sic de die in diem quousque &c. 
sub eadem poena.* ^ 

The next step was to file the answer. On this the defendant 
was sworn. In this there seems to have been a change in the practice 
of the Court between the time of Henry 7 and that of James 1. * The 
defendant,' says Hudson, * must either put in a plea, demurrer, or an 
answer, or (as Serjeant Hale did) an answer having all those titles.' 
This proceeding on the part of Serjeant Hale,^ which Hudson notes 

' In Goryng v. the Earl of Northumber- * Qu. was this Robert Hale (d. c. I(il4) 

land (p. 97) the plaintiff upon the analogy the father of the celebrated Sir Matthew 

of this procedure offers to be 'forth com- i Hale, G.J., who is recorded to have aban- 

myng vpon suffisaunt suretie to be made doned his profession owing to his dislike of 

vnto the said Erl of Northumberland ' the use of legal fictions in pleading ' which, 

* Select Cases in the Court of Bequests, as he thought, was to tell a Lye ' (Gilbert 

Selden Soc. 1898, p. 6. Burnett, ' Life of Sir Matthew Hale ' [1682J, 



INTRODUCTION XXIX 

as exceptional, Beems to have been the rule in the time of Henry 7, 
when the art of multiplying costs was presumably in its infancy. 
The defences in this volume do not confine themselves to one of these 
three courses. The case put forward by the Abbot of St. Augustine's, 
Canterbury, against the Prior of Bath is, as has been noted, some- 
what anomalous. In form it is a bill of complaint ; in substance, an 
answer to a bill previously filed by the Prior. It opens with a 
demurrer to the bill for insufliciency and uncertainty, and concludes 
with a plea to the jurisdiction of the Court (pp. 20-21). The answer 
of John Fitzherbert (pp. 61-64) opens with what Hudson describes as 
* a plea to the matter of charge (which) sometimes admitteth the 
matter and yet alledgeth foreign matter of record that he ought not 
to answer it' (Hudson, p. 163). It concludes, Uke the Abbot of St. 
Augustine's answer, with a plea to the jurisdiction of the Court. In 
the answer of Sir Bobert Letice, clerk, and others, the defendants 
first demur for insufficiency &c., next plead to the jurisdiction of the 
Court, and then introduce the substantial defence with the formula, 
' And thauauntage therof to them savid for declaracion of trouth and 
answer seyen that ' &c. (p. 166). The same course is followed by the 
defendant in Smyth v. Broke (p. 48) ; by the Abbot of Malmesbury at 
the suit of Robert Carter (p. 122) ; by William Essexe at the suit of 
William Halle (p. 175) ; by John Newman at the suit of Thomas Powe 
and another (p. 229) ; by Eobert Warcoppe at the suit of the Abbot 
of Byland (p. 261) ; and by Randolf Austen and others at the suit of 
John Butlond and others (p. 266). Other defendants, as Squyer and 
others at the suit of Pynson (p. 116), and the Principal and Fellowship 
of Furnivall's Inn at the suit of Colthurst and Furbur (p. 248), content 
themselves with a demurrer to the * insuflBciency ' of the bill, set out 
their account of the facts, and traverse the allegations of the plaintiffs. 
The defendant in Jones v. Lychfeld appears to have drafted his 
own answer (p. 276), informally contesting the several allegations of 
the bill. John Stoden and another simply tell their tale (p. 3). 

The significance of the demurrer of * insufficiency ' is not very 
clear. Hudson says, * Insufficiency of matter is alledged, sometimes 
that the matter in charge tendeth to accuse the defendant of some 
crime which may be capital ; in which case nemo tenetur prodere 
seipsum ; or upon a penal law, where he is to forfeit his goods ; 
sometimes that the matter is proper for ecclesiastical cognizance, as 

p. 3) ? But I find no serjeant of the name serjeant-at-law 1594, Queen's serjeant 1602, 
in Foss's lists of Serjeants made between King's serjeant 1603. E. Foss, * Lives of 
1558 and 1624, only John Heale called the Judges ' (1857), v. 414, 415, vi. 30. 



XXX COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

defamation, or such-like ; sometimes that it is petty or trivial, and so 
not worthy the dignity of the Court. These and such-like are causes 
of demurrer for insufl&ciency of matter/ ^ The cases here seem to shew 
that insufficiency imphes a plea to jurisdiction in favour of the 
Common Law Courts generally, and not, as Hudson seems to limit it, 
of the Ecclesiastical Courts only. It appears to mean, ' This bill is 
insufficient to put the defendant to answer here ' ; or it stands for 
' trivial,' expressed in the answer of John Att Well as * not materiall 
nor mater of substance' (p. 12). It is thus that the predication of 

* insufficiency ' of a bill involves the connotation, implied by Hudson, 
that the jurisdiction of the Court is * insufficient ' to take cognisance 
of it. 

* Insufficiency * is constantly coupled with * uncertainty.' ' De- 
murrer,' says Hudson (p. 164), *is in all cases where there wanteth 
certainty, or legal words of charge in the bill.' The complaint of the 
Abbot of St. Augustine's, Canterbury, alleges * insufficiente and un- 
certeynte ' against that of the Prior of Bath (p. 20), and the form, 
borrowed, like many of the other pleadings, from Common Law proce- 
dure, commonly appears in the statements of defence, replications, 
and rejoinders throughout this volume. In Hudson's time the Court 
frequently referred the demurrers to the judges. We have no direct 
evidence that this was the procedure under Henry 7. * Upon the 
judges' certificate,' says Hudson, ' if the same determine the matter 
which is referred that the defendant ought to make a better answer, 
thereupon doth the clerk of the Court make a warrant to the process- 
maker to make a subpoena ad faciendum meliorem responsionem, 
which is only in the form of the first subpoena, but that the same is 
indorsed with these words, " ad faciendum meliorem responsionem " ' 
(p. 166). No such indorsement is to be found in the documents 
before us, and it is to be noticed that Hudson (p. 87) represents the 
process-maker's office as of recent creation, his duties having been 
formerly performed by the clerk of the Court. Nevertheless the form 
of indorsement was probably of old standing. However this may be, 
we have instances of the filing of second answers which were in effect 
' meliores responsiones.' John Fitzherbert puts in a second answer 
indorsed * Nouum responsum ' (p. 59) in the same term as he put in 
the first. As the practice of referring demurrers to the judges was 
neither obligatory nor invariable, for they were sometimes decided 

* by the judgment of the Court upon public motion or the lord keeper's 
private opinion' (Hudson, p. 165), this celerity makes for the infer- 

' * Of the Court of Star Chamber,' p. 1G4. 



INTllODUCTION XXXI 

ence that judgment upon the demurrer was delivered by the Court 
of the Star Chamber then and there, since the judges could scarcely 
have put aside other business in order without delay to hear argu- 
ments upon points remitted to them. Two answers are filed in 
Joyfull V. Warcoppe, the defendants being added to and in some cases 
changed, presumably by order or with leave of the Court (pp. 107, 
109). Two bills of complaint were filed by the Abbot of Shrewsbury 
in 1509, of which only the second survives (p. 189). Presumably this 
must have been filed after a judgement against the plaintiff on 
demurrer. Hudson says that if the defendant's plea or demurrer be 
held good * then is he absolutely dismissed with his costs ' (Hudson, 
p. 166). 

An endeavour was made by lords of parliament in the reign of 
Elizabeth to raise a privilege of answering before this Court on their 
honour and not being sworn thereto. * Henry, earl of Lincoln, stood 
upon this in Queen Elizabeth's time, but in vain, for he was over- 
ruled in it and did answer upon his oath ' (Hudson, p. 167). Hudson 
cites three cases in the reign of Henry 8, two of temporal and one 
of a spiritual peer, to prove that the claim was an encroachment. 
The replication of the Prior of Bath that the form of the bill put in 
by the Abbot of St. Augustine's, Canterbury, was, * by cause the 
said Abbot wold not be sworne vppon eny answer by hym to be made 
directly to the bille of the seide Prior ' (p. 25), confirms Hudson's 
contention. No inference can be drawn from any other answers here 
put in by lords of parliament. 

*An answer,' adds Hudson (p. 168), *is not perfect without 
examination ; and it is part of the oath taken, to make true answer 
to the interrogatories, which in antient times was called "examinatus 
super responsionem suam." ' In the time of Henry 8, he tells us, 

* the examinations were taken by the Lord Chancellor in the Court, 
where the interrogatories were never above six or seven, and those 
every one a short question.' This was also the procedure in 
Chancery. An example is to be seen in the cape of Katherine Danyell 
r. Richard Belyngburgh, teiup. Hen. 6,^ where the bill is indorsed, 

* Infrascriptus Eicardus in Cancellaria Regis personaliter comparens 
& i])idem super sancta Dei evangelia juratus & examinatas ad 
veritatem dicendam de materia in hac billa contenta dicit quod ' t"tc. 
This was one of the points in connexion with the jurisdiction of 
Chancery and the Council to which the Commons had in the previous 
reign taken special exception. * Les queux plees ne purront prendre 

' ' Cal. of Proc. in Chancery,' I. xxxi. 

I) 



t 



XXXll (X)URT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

fyn, synoun par Examination & serement des parties, solonc la 
fourme de ley cyvyle & ley de Seinte Esglise, en subvercion de 
vostre commune ley.* * That in the time of Henry 7 defendants 
continued to be sworn to their answers appears from the case of the 
Prior of Bath against the Abbot of St. Augustine's, Canterbury. The 
Abbot's answer is drawn in the form of a bill of complaint. This is 
perhaps an instance of Hudson's statement that a defendant may 
appear * without process when any person of worth or honesty hath a 
scandalous bill filed against him; having notice thereof, he may 
appear gratis to purge his reputation ' (p. 158). The Prior of Bath, 
however, alleges that the form of the Abbot of St. Augustine's answer 
was * only of eubtiltie and craft by cause the same abbot wold not be 
sworne vppon eny answer by hym to be made directly to the bille of 
the same Prior ne yef eny answer direct therunto, which is a right 
ieopardous president to be begon of newe ' (p. 25). * John Fitzherbert 
sworn saith that this his answere is treu in euery point and he saith,' 
&c. (p. 67). So *Herry Squyer sworne vpon this his answer ' (p. 117). 
* Dan John Wotton sworn upon the bill of complaint and this his 
answer deposith ' (p. 48). * To the v* ' vi^^ and vii^ ' (interrogatories) it 
is answered to the bill ' (p. 186), i.e. the statement of defence of the 
Bailiffs of Shrewsbury has already made answer. Only the indorse- 
ment of the bill in Treherne and another v. Harecourt suggests, though 
it does not prove, that Sir Robert Harecourt appeared to answer inter- 
rogatories viva voce brfore he filed his deft nee (p. 163). In the above 
cases, it will be observed, the interrogatories constituted the examina- 
tion of the defendant. This was a proceeding distinct from and prior 
to the examination of witnesses, as may be seen in the case of Madeley 
V. Fitzherbert (p. 68). As has been stated, the examinations of the 
parties * were taken by the lord Chancellor in the Court ' in the 
time of Henry 8.^ We have in Kebell r. Vernon a note that the 
deposition of the plaintiff was handed to the defendant's attorney by 
the Lord Chancellor in the Star Chamber (p. 134). 

This examination of defendants on oath is admitted by the writers 
who do not regard the statute of 1487 as the origin of the Court to 
have been introduced by that Act into the practice before the Council. 
It was a change of great importance. The Court was authorised by 
the Act * to call before theym by Wrytte or Pryvye seall the seid 
mysdoers and theym and other by ther discressions to whome the 
trouthff may be knowen, to examyn and such as they fynd therin 

' Rot. Pari. 3 Hen. 5. vol. iv. p. 84, a ■' Hudson, • Of the Court of Star Cbam- 

(1415). See further p. Ivi, infra. ber,* p. 168. 



INTRODUCTION XXXIU 

defectiflf to punyssh ' &c. Upon this Coke glosses * to examine the 
defendant, which being understood after his answer made to be upon 
oath upon interrogatories, which this ancient Court proceeding in 
criminal! causes had not, nor could have but by Act of Parliament 
or prescription.* 

e. It is curious that we have among these cases only twelve 
instances of replications. It cannot be because replications were not 
invented, for the two cases of the Mayor &c. of Exeter against Stoden 
(p. 1), and Tayllour against Att Well (p. 6), heard before the King in 
Comicil temp. Edward 4, both contain them. Their rarity seems to 
support Hudson's view that since no new charge could be brought in 
the replication it was a mere formality, * by reason whereof there is so 
little regard of the replication as that they are only drawn by clerks, 
without any regard whether there be any issue joined in the case or 
not, no counsel being made privy or acquainted therewith ; insomuch 
as if many causes were well looked into when they came to hearing, 
the parties would be found not to have joined any issue ' (Hudson, 
p. 191). The pleadings subsequent to the answer stem thus to 
have degenerated into a question of fees, for Hudson tells us that 
the rejoinder of the defendant was preceded by a warrant issued 
by the clerk of the Court to the process-maker to make a sub- 
poena for the defendant to rejoin, *for which warrant he receiveth 
only two shillings ' (ib.). This last subpoena was indorsed * ad 
rejungendum replicationi, J. S.' In is not surprising, if this was the 
course followed in the time of Henry 7, that we only find among 
these documents five rejoinders of that reign (pp. 61, 67, 79, 118, 234), 
in addition to the one in Att Well ats Tayllour (p. 14) in the reign 
of Edward 4. There is no sign of the surrejoinder and rebutter, of 
which Hudson says that * of latter times those are wholly out of use 
by reason the clerks only direct all these pleadings without the advice 
or subscription of any counsel ' (Hudson, p. 192). 

/. The pleadings closed, there followed the examination of wit- 
nesses. They were taken by commission in the country ; but in 
London it would appear from the case of the Abbot against the 
Bailiffs of Shrewsbury (p. 193) by the clerk of the Court. When 
commissioners were nominated, they were * men of great worldt in the 
county where the fact ariseth and were antiently appointed by 
the Court' (Hudson, p. 202). At a later date they were agreed 
upon between the parties (ib.). These documents show that eminent 

b2 



XXxiv COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

lawyers were sometimes commissioned, as in the case of Hewyt and 
the Mayor &c. of Exeter against the Mayor &c. of London (p. 80). 
But the * Dcdimus Potestatem,* the name given to this commission 
(ib.) in Carter against the Abbot of Malmesbury (p. 121), is an illus- 
tration of Hudson's statement. Among these cases we have a con- 
siderable number of interrogatories and depositions of witnesses. These 
were read to the Court, a proceeding recited in the judgement of the 
Court of July 8, 1508, in the case of the Abbot r. the Bailiflfs of 
Shrewsbury : * perlecte fuerunt deposiciones & dicta testium produc- 
torum tam ex parte abbatis Salopiensis pro parte sua quam ex parte 
balUuorum burgensium ville Salopie predicte ' (p. 187). The words 
' & dicta ' illustrate Hudson's statement that as witnesses ' may 
be examined in Court before any comAission be awarded for that 
purpose, so may they * also after the commission has concluded ' 
(Hudson, p. 200).' The examination of Richard Dicher on February 6, 
1604 (p. 184), certainly took place in London, as his answer to the 
sixth Interrogatory clearly implies, and possibly before the Court. 
Where evidence was taken by commission, in Hudson's time, at any 
rate, the accredited, if not the universal, practice seems to have been 
to take the evidence of each witness apart. * The place where they 
(the commissioners) examine ought to be private for that purpose, 
that parties and witnesses may not hear the several examinations of 
every witness ' (id. p. 204). 

g. In his account of the manner in which the Court of Star 
Chamber deUvered its judgements Hudson slurs over a question which 
in his day was one of acute controversy. His words are : * The lords 
proceed to their sentence, which is always delivered in great silence 
and without any interruption, the inferior beginning, and so in order 
every man, and the archbishop last before the lord chancellor or the 
lord keeper, if the treasurer be not the supreme judge at the time ' 
(id. p. 228). Who were the 'lords' ? Did they include the King's 
Justices ? Coke (4 Inst. 62) argues that * it is clear that the two 
justices in the Star Chamber are judges and have voices, as it hath 
been resolved^ and daily experience teacheth.' It were much to be 

' Cp. the exemplification of the decree of to this Court, as the Lord St. Alban hath 

the Star Chamber on November 19, 1508, of late published, but contrary to the resolu- 

in favour of the Warden and Canons of St. tion of the three principal judges given in 

Mary's, Oterey, Pat. Rolls, 1 Hen. 8, pt. 2, his presence in Proctor's case . . . where 

m. 9, ' testium deposicionibus visis auditis it was resolved that that statute enabled 

lectis & intellcctis.' that court no more than it did any other 

^ One of these resolutions is thus de- court in Westminster hall, but these lords 

scribed by Hudson : ' I should speak some might determine those matters in any place 

thing concerning the question before of England, neither did that statute make 

touched, whether the statute of 3 Hen. 7 those lords sole judges of that court and 

gave any power, strength, or confirmation yet compelled them to call assistants, other- 



INTRODUCTION XXXV 

wished that these resolutions and the grounds of them were in print. 
There is, however, a case in print which makes directly to the contrary, 
argued within five years of the statute of 1487. This judgement, 
after reciting that Act, lays down that it appoints * nul juge sinon 
I Chancelier, Treasurer ou Privy-Seel ou deux de eux & les autres sont 
assistants & aidants & nemy Juges. Et issint accord' Touts les Jus- 
tices ' (Y. B. E. T. 8 Hen. 7, f. 13, pi. 7). This was in 1498. 

Let us see what light the judgement in the Abbot of Shrewsbury's 
case here printed throws upon this issue. 

4. The pertinent words of the Act ' Pro Camera Stellata ' (8 Hen. 7, 
c. 1 (] 487), are * That the Chaunceller and Tresorer of Englond for the 
tyme beyng and Keper of the Kynges pryvye Seall, or too of theym, 
callyng to hym a Bisshopp and a temporall Lord of the Kynges most 
Honorable Councell, and the too chyeflf Justices of the Kynges Benche 
and Comyn Place for the tyme beyng or other too Justices in ther 
absence, upon bill or informacion put to the seid Chaunceller ' &c. 
shall summon the misdoers * by Writte or Pryvye Seall ' and so forth. 
According to the exemplification of the decree of the Star Chamber 
dated July 8, 23 Hen. 7 (1508), an exhibit in the Abbot of Shrews- 
bury's case, which exemplification is printed as document D (p. 187), 
the Chancellor, William Warham, Archbishop of Canterbury, presided. 
There also sat Sir Robert (here by mistake called Francis) Rede, who 
had been Chief Justice of the Common Pleas since October 1606 ; 
Thomas Tremale,* who was a justice of the King's Bench; Robert 
Britnell, or Brudenell, who became a judge of the King's Bench on 
April 28, 1607; the Chief Baron of the Exchequer, Sir William 
Hody, who had been appointed in 1486 ; John Kyngsmell, a justice 
of the Common Pleas since July 2, 1603 ; John Fyssher, a justice 
of the same Court since November 8, 1601 ; and John Buttler, or 

wise their proceedings were erroneous, as whether he ought, upon this divided opinion, 

it is held in (Y. B.) 8 Hen. 7, 7 ; but the to be acquitted or condemned was referred 

court subsisteth by ancient prescription ' &c. to the two Chief Justices, who held that 

(p. 50). This does not follow the report of ' the Star Chamber was only bound by its 

Proctor's case in Coke, * Reports,' pt. xii. | own precedents. These being examined to 

f. 118, though it is not inconsistent there- I the number of two, temp. Eliz., seemed to 

¥rith. In that case, upon an information shew that the Lord Chancellor's voice was 

preferred in the Star Chamber against Sir deteiminant. But in 4 Inst. f. 64 Coke 

Stephen Proctor ' for scandal and con- tells us that * sentence was never given 

spiracy of the Earl of Northampton and against Sir Stephen Proctor agreeable to 

the Lord Wootton,' the eight members of the generall rule in other courts.' See 

the Court were equaUy divided. The Chief further Hudson, p. 31. 

Baron, the two Chief Justices, and a tem- ' It may be added of Tremale that Foss 

poral Baron condemned the defendant to had not been able to trace him as acting in 

fine and imprisonment. The Lord Chan- a judicial capacity at a later date than 

cellor, two Bishops, and the Chancellor of Hilary Term, 1507. ' Lives,' v. 77. 
the Exchequer acquitted him. The questipn 



►>; 



XXXVl 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 






» i 



1 f 



i ; : 



-: » 



Boteler, a justice of the same Court since April 26, 1508. There 
was also the Prior of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem, Sir Thomas 
Docwra, who had been elected to that distinguished office in 1502. 
According to the exemplification, these formed the Court. It will be 
noticed, however, that the exemplification appears to rank together as 
* capitales Judices * the Chancellor Archbishop and the Chief Justice 
of the Common Pleas. No authority for the assignment to these two 
of any such joint priority is derivable from the words of the statute 
*Pro Camera Stellata.' The mystery is fortunately solved by a 
reference to the original decree of the Star Chamber, given in English, 
of which the exemplification D is a Latin rendering (see p. 188, 
n. 12). Thence it appears that Sir John Fyneux, at the time that 
the decree was pronounced Chief Justice of the King's Bench, was 
present, and it is to him and the Chief Justice of the Common Pleas 
that the designation ' capitales Judices,' ' chief justices,* really 
referred. The omission of his name from the exemplification issued 
on July 10, 1509 (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, i. 289) must have been purely 
accidental, for Fyneux was then still Chief Justice, and the words 
' capitales judices ' were doubtless intended to include him. But the 
inclusion of the Chief Justice of the King's Bench does not satisfy the 
requirements of the statute. We note the absence both of the Trea- 
surer of England, Thomas Howard, Earl of Surrey, appointed in 1501, 
and of the Keeper of the Privy Seal, Richard Foxe, Bishop of Win- 
chester, who had held his office of Keeper since February 24, 1487 
(W. Campbell, * Mat.* ii. 158). Of these one at least should have been 
present. The following columns shew the variations from the statu- 
tory court : — 

statutory Court. 
Abp. William Warham, Chancellor 
Thomas Howard, Earl of Surrey, 

Lord Treasurer 
Bp. Richard Foxe, Lord Privy Seal 
A Bishop 
Sir Thomas Doowra, Prior of St. 

John 
Sir John Fyneux, C.J. of the K.B. 
Sir Robert Rede, C.J. of the C.P. 



Actual Court. 




Abp. William Warham, C. 



or 



Thomas Tremale, J. ] 

Robert BritneU, J. j 

Total number of Court six or seven. 



Sir Thos. Docwra, Prior of 

St. John. 
Sir John Fyneux, C.J. of K.B. 
Sir Robert Rede, C.J. of C.P. 
Thomas Tremale, J. of K.B. 
Robert BritneU, J. of K.B. 
Sir William Hody, C.B. 
John Kyngsmell, J. of C.P. 
John Fyssher, J. of C.P. 

Total number of Court nine. 



i I 



INTRODUCTION • XXXVll 

The Court comprised all the judges except the puisne Barons of 
Exchequer (see pp. 188, n. 12, and 199, n. 2). Of the judges we 
know by the lists of judges who sat in the Court of Bequests ^ that 
Bede and Eyngesmell were members of the Council. It is possible 
that they all were, though this was not a statutory necessity. The 
journals of the House of Lords shew that the Prior of St. John sat 
as a temporal peer. He had been therefore summoned according 
to the statute. The decree and the subsequent references to it all 
agree in distinguishing the judges from the councillors, and repre- 
senting them merely as ' advisers.* For example, in the Abbot's 
letter of 1509 (J, p. 198) it is set forth that the case had been 
decided * by your good lordschip (the Chancellor) & oder lordes of 
the seid late kinges moost honorabill councell with & by the advises 
of all the Jugges then beyng of Englond and the cheflF baron.* The 
same statement is made in the Abbot's bill of the same date (p. 190). 
These statements are of importance. The exemplification printed on 
p. 187 recites the presence only of the Chancellor, the Prior of St. 
John's of Jerusalem, and the judges. But ' dominus cancellarius & 
ceteri consiliarii * are represented by it as giving the judgement on the 
advice of the judges. Except for the Abbot's letter it might have been 
supposed that the * ceteri consiliarii ' was merely common form ; but the 
letter, as also the bill of 1509, is confirmed by the original judgement of 
which the exemplification is a translation.* It might, of course, have 
been that the * ceteri consiliarii ' were the Treasurer and the Lord 
Keeper ; but apart from the presumption that their names would not 
have been omitted even if a cursory form of recital had been used, 
we actually have the composition of the Court set out. The original 
judgement runs : * it is ordened and decreid by the same counsell by 
suche aduyse and consent of all the Kynges jugges' &c. (p. 188, 
n. 12). The Star Chamber is not there mentioned. The inference 
is that, in the opinion of the Chancellor and of the Court of Star 
Chamber of 1508, the judgement of 1498 was not law, but, as Coke 
phrases it, ' a sudden opinion,' so far as regards the proposition that 
no other members of the Council were judges but the Chancellor, 
the Treasurer, and the Privy Seal. What, then, of the King's Justices 
summoned under that Act ? It is quite clear from the wording both 

' Selden Soc. 1898, p. cii, fol. tioo runs : * habitaque super inde matura & 
* In Pat. Rolls, 1 Hen. 8, pt. 2, m. 9, is diligent! deliberacione per Reuerendis- 
an exemplification of a judgement delivered simum in Christo patrem Willelmum Can- 
on November 19, 1508, * in Camera Stellata ' tuariensem Archiepiscopum Cancellariuni 
in favour of the Warden and Canons of Anglie & dictum Consilium.' 
St. Mary, Oterey, Devon. The exemplifies- 



XXXVlll COURT OF THK STAR CHAMIlER 

of the judgement and of the exemplification, as well as in the opinion 
of the draughtsman of the Abbot's second bill (p. 189), and of the 
Abbot himself, who was a lord of Parliament (p. 183), that they were 
advisers and not judges of the Court, and that in this respect the 
decision of 1498 was accepted as sound. ^ 

Who were the * ceteri consiliarii ' who, according to its common 
form, sat in the Court of Star Chamber? There is room for two of 
them, * a Bisshopp and a temporall Lord of the Kynges most Honorable 
CounceU/ in the statute of 1487. Miss Scofield has collected instances 
from the MSS. in the British Museum shewing that the administra- 
tive Council was in the habit of using the Star Chamber for its deli- 
berations upon political affairs. In those instances the attendance 
was numerous, and they undoubtedly entered the minutes of their 
proceedings in the * Liber Intrationum ' used by the judicial body. 
But the examples collected by Miss Scofield do not establish that the 
attendance was large when the Court was sitting on purely legal busi- 
ness. Even the three orders passed on June 17 8 Hen. 8 (1616), 
Oct. 14 9 Hen. 8 (1517), and Oct. 19 21 Hen. 8 (1529), at which 
fourteen, thirty-four, and thirty persons were present respectively, 
may very well have been orders made by the Council sitting in 
the Star Chamber and not by the judicial body at all,^ though in 
the time of Elizabeth they were designated Orders of the Court of 
Star Chamber. As a matter of fact, this was justified by the common 
use by both bodies, if they may be distinguished, of the style * the 
King's Council in the Star Chamber.* ^ 

Nevertheless we have some contemporary evidence that the * ceteri 
consiliarii ' of the King's Council in the Star Chamber, assembled for 
judicial purposes only, at times exceeded the whole number of the Court 
as defined by the Act of 1487. The Elizabethan compiler of the notes 
of the judges in the Court during the reign of Henry 8 says, speaking 
of 1527, two years before Wolsey's fall : * In these times the Cardinall 
of York was Chancellor and legate, and the presence was alwayes grete 
that sate with him in the Star Chamber.' * The mention of the fact 

' In the case mentioned in the preceding indicates that the public appreciated the 

note the recital of the Inspeximus is that difference between the Council sitting in 

the judgement was delivered auctoritate the Sta*- Chamber as a Council of State and 

eiusdem Consilii cum assensu legis peri- as a judicial body under the same designa- 

torum utri-jsque partis, which looks as if, in tion. Sir T. Tyng writes to Sir .John Paston : 

the case of a judgement by consent, the * Sir, ther hath be so gret eownsell fer the 

King's Justices took no part. Kynges maters that my Lord chawnsler 

■-' Lansd. MS. 1, art. 44. See C. L. kept not the Star Chamber thys viii. days, 

Scotield, • Study of the Court of Star but one day at London, on Sunt Lenardes 

Chamber ' (Chicago, 1900), p. 30. Day.' Paston Letters, iii. 3H.5 ; Scof. p. 27. 

'■* Miss Scofield points out a passage in ' Lansd. M.S. 160, art. 112 ; Scotield, p. 

the Paston Letters, of the date 1494, which iil. 



INTRODUCTION XXXIX 

that the Cardinal was Chancellor suggests strongly that the sources 
from which the writer drew pointed to judicial sittings. Hudson, who 
searched the original records, writing in the reign of Charles 1, says : 

* The number in the reigns of Hen. 7 and Hen. 8 have been well 
near to forty ; at some one time thirty.' Undoubtedly he must be 
taken as speaking of the judicial court, for he adds : ' In the reign of 
queen Elizabeth oftentimes (as many), but now much lessened since 
the barons and earls, not being privy councillors, have forborne their 
attendance.' ^ 

Who, then, were the * ceteri consiliarii ' who thronged the judge- 
ment-seat of this tribunal, and what were their quaUfications ? Upon 
this we have one witness of the sixteenth and four of the seventeenth 
century. It may be premised that, according to Fortescue, peers were 

* consiliarii nati.' ^ It was probably with this doctrine in his mind 
that Sir Thomas Smith, writing in 1565, says : * The judges of this 
Court are the Lord Chancellor, the Lord Treasurer, all of the Queen's 
Majesty's Counsell, the Barons of this land.' These last he elsewhere 
designates as * other Lords and Barons which be not of the privy 
Counsell and be in the town.' ^ This statement Cowel, writing about 
half a century later, glosses as follows : — * It appeareth both by Sir 
Thomas Smith .... and by experience also that at this day the 
whole number of the Prince's most honourable Privy Councell and 
such other Barons spiritual or temporal as be called thither by the 
Prince shall have place in this Court.' ^ This version introduces a 
summons as an antecedent condition, as to which Smith is silent.* 
But Wolsey's love of pomp and the thronged attendance in his chan- 
cellorship ^ point to the practice of the issue of summons in his day. 

Next to Sir Thomas Smith in order of date comes William Mill, 
clerk of the Court in the reign of Elizabeth and a searcher of the 
original records. He writes : * There is a fee appointed to the clerke 
of the Councell to bee taken of every one admitted according to their 
severall degrees, vizt. for the admittance of euery Arch Bishop and 
Duke to the Councell xx s. of euery Bisshop and Earle xvij s. iiij d. of 
euery viscount and Lord x s. of euery knight and other persons vi s. 
viij d. And from hence doe I gather that to bee true which my father 
being a man of longe service in that place hath oflften told mee that 

* *0f the Court of Star Chamber,' p. chamber.' 

30. "^ A specimen summons to the Bishop 

* ' Governance of England ' (ed. C. of Winchester in 1593 is given by W. Mill 
Plummer, 1885), p. 147. in B. M. Hargr. MS. 216, f. 176, d. 

' * Commonwealth of England,' iii. 5. * Q. Cavendish, * Life of Wolsey ' (ed. 

* Interpreter (ed. 1637), sub * Starre- 1825), i. 42. 



xl COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

noe man should sitt in the Courte but if hee were swome of the 
Couneell And that the Gierke of the Councell should goe vnto him 
and declare vnto him that hee ought not to sitt there but if hee were 
swome For to that end as I eoniecture both the entrie and the Fee 

^ were appointed that the Clerkes might take notice of the person soe 

\ * admitted and sworne/ ^ 

The third witness is Coke, who, after enumerating among the 
judges of the Court the great oflScers of State, the privy councillors, 

'■ , and the judges, adds : ' and such other Lords of Parliament as the 

King shall name.' ^ Elsewhere he adds : * The Lords of Parliament 
are properly De Magno Concilio regis, but neither these, being not of 
the King's Privy Councell, nor any of the rest of the Judges and 
Barons of the Exchequer, are standing judges of this Court.' ^ This 

. statement seems to shew that the persons summoned were summoned 

; and sworn ad hoc, where they were not members of the Privy Council, 

being, as Sir Thomas Smith phrases it, * in the town.' According to 
Coke, * every privy counsellor hath a voice and place in the Court of 
Star Chamber.' * 

So far the evidence seems to be consistent and probable as to the 
methods by which the attendance of * ceteri consiliarii ' was at times 
secured. But the laborious Hudson, first a practitioner in and after- 
wards clerk of the Court, writing in the time of Charles I., is clearly 
of opinion that this practice was a usurpation on the part of the 
prerogative and unconstitutional. From him we learn (p. 36) that Lord 
Chancellor Ellesmere, after the example of Wolsey, was in the habit 
of taking his seat in the Star Chamber attended by a number of the 
nobility. * The Court,' he tells us, * is not alone replenished with 
noble dukes, marquises, earls, and barons, which surely ought to be 
frequented with great presence of them, but also with reverend arch- 
bishops and prelates, grave counsellors of state, just and learned 
judges,' &c. ... * And the Court was in the reigns of Hen. 7 and 
Hen. 8 most commonly frequented by seven or eight bishops and pre- 
lates every sitting day ; in which times let me without o£fence observe 

that the fines touched not to the destruction of the offender's estate 

* 

' I B. M. Hargr. MS. 216, art. 18, f. 103, a Bisshopp or a temporall Lord of the 

dors. Kynges most Honorable Councell,' &c. 

' * 4 Inst. c. 6. This Coke reproduces as * of the King's 

* 4 Inst. c. 5, f. 66. In 4 Inst. f. 62 most honourable Privy Councell.' Now 

Coke sets out the Act of 1487 with an in- we know from Hudson that a bill prajing 

I terpolation of some legal moment, which process for the defendant to appear before 

i shows how little he is to be trusted as the Privy Council was held demurrable in 

1 ' an authority for facts anterior to his the Court of Star Chamber. 'Of the 

own experience. The Act runs that one of Court of Star Chamber,* p. 24. 
the three ofiiciuls named ' callyng to hym * 4 Inst. c. 2, f. 54. 



INTRODUCTION xli 

and utter ruin of him and his posterity, as now they do, but to his 
correction, the Clergy's song being of mercy.' ^ This sarcasm, not 
improbably levelled at the cruelties of Laud, discloses that the 
attendant peers took part in the decisions of the Court either as 
advisers or judges. In Hudson's opinion it is clear that they were 
judges before the 30 Eliz., and the passage which states this is suffi- 
ciently important to merit transcription. * Now that every peer of 
the realm which is a lord of the parliament is de magno concilio, it 
appeareth partly by the writ by which they are called to the dignity, 
wherein is contained that the king desireth their conference circa 
ardua negotia regni concilium suum impensare, but especially for 
that they have used to sit and give their judgments in this high court 
as judges in the same, and that most usually and commonly until 
about the 30 Eliz. and myself have heard a great lord, yet living, 
claim his right of sitting there in open court; to whom the lord 
chancellor Ellesmere gave this answer — that he knew not whether it 
were his master's pleasure that that question should be determined 
that day ; but some other of the presence maintained stifly the 
baron's right ; which seemeth to be agreeable with justice ; for it is 
undoubted that Henry earl of Lincoln and the lord Grey, and divers 
others which were not of the council of state were present and sat 
and gave judgment when Mr. Davison was sentenced. And how they 
were competent judges unsworn; if not by their native right, I 
cannot understand ; for surely the calling of them in that case was not 
made legitimate by any act of parliament ; neither without their 
right were they more apt to be judges than any other inferior person 
in the kingdom.' * 

The variety of meanings attached to the word ' concilium ' and 
the obscurity attendant upon the evolution of the Court would not 
unnaturally give rise to such claims as Hudson affirms that he wit- 
nessed. His own account shews us that they were disallowed. His 
remarks upon the Davison case are inconclusive. Since about 1588, 
as he himself tells us, the practice had changed, and in his day none 
but privy councillors sat. It is to be presumed that in Davison's case 
the practice of the Court as stated by Mill was observed, and that 
the lords in question, though * not of the council of state,' were duly 
summoned and sworn. 

But the members of the Court of the Star Chamber by no means 
consisted exclusively of spiritual and temporal peers. The volume of 
' Select Cases in the Court of Bequests,' published by the Selden 

' * Of the Court of Star Chamber,' pp. 25, 28, 35, 36. "< lb. p. 24. 



xlii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Society in 1898, contains a list in Sir Julius CaBsar's handwriting 
verified by a transcript of a certificate which he aflSrms to have been 
received by him from William Mill. The list is intituled * The 
names of such as have sat in the Star Chamber since the 9 yere of 
K. H. the 7. & vntill the 4 and 5 of P. & Mary/ » Under 9 Hen. 7 
(Aug. 22, 149d-Aug. 21, 1494) appear the names of Sir Reginald 
Bray, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Sir Richard Guilford, 
Sir Thomas Lovel, Treasurer of the Household, who were probably 
all privy councillors, and also of David Williams, Master of the Rolls, 
Dr. Aynsworth, Prebendary of Lincoln, and Geoffrey Simeon, Dean of 
the Chapel Eoyal. Under 10 Hen. 7 are four names, Dr. Mayo, 
President of Magdalen College, Oxford, a clerk in Orders, Dr. Hatton, 
Fellow of King's College, Cambridge, and LL.D., John Morgan, 
LL.D., Dean of St. George's, Windsor, and Richard Fitzjames, Warden 
of Merton College, Oxford.^ The names given are not the names of all 
the members of the Court, but presumably of those who first sat in 
the years under which they are respectively ranged, which confirms 
Mill's statement as to the practice of swearing in the members of the 
Court. It would appear from a passage of Mill that, though not of 
the Privy Council, * they were at the least sworne to bee Councellors 
of that place or at large as it was there termed, which use Continued 
alsoe in King Henry the viij. tyme.' ^ 

So far, then, the conclusion appears to favour the view that 
down to 30 Eliz. the judges of the Court of Star Chamber were 
the members of the King's Council, i.e. the Concilium Ordinarium,^ 
those who were not also privy councillors being, as we learn from 
Mill, Cowel, and Coke, summoned and sworn. But Coke argues 
from the wording of the Act of 1487 that *if the justices should 
be but assistants and no judges in the Star Chamber, for that 
they are to be called &c., then and for the same reason should 
neither lord spirituall nor temporall nor other of the privy councell 
be judges nor have voices in the Star Chamber.' ^ This alternative 
was accepted by some of the controversialists of the day, and 
is, of course, the judgement of 1493. That judgement was cited 
arguendo in the case of the Earl of Leicester r. Sir Christopher 

» • Select Cases in the Court of Re- 33, n. 2. 

quests,' p. cviii, taken from £. M. Lans^d. * Lord Burghley, Lord Treasurer, is re- 

MS. 126, fo. 3. I ported by W. Mill, clerk of the Court, as 

- The last two aie entered as *armigeri ' saying on Nov. 7, 31 Eliz. (1589), that the 

by the blunder of a transcriber, who has | Court of Star Chamber * is the greate Coun- 

misread * cler.' cell of the Einge.' B. M. MS. Hargr. 216, 

» Hargr. MS. 216, p. 326 ; Scofield, p. p. 173, d. » 4 Inst. 62. 



INTRODUCTION xliii 

Heydon, heard in the Queen's Bench in E. T. 13 Eliz. -1571).^ In 
1594 John Hawarde, the reporter of cases in the Star Chamber,^ 
mentions a legal discussion at ' dinner at Bilbye's, the Sub-Chancellor 
of the Exchequer. By Blunt ^ it is apparent that the Lord Keeper 
can give sentence by himself, notwithstanding it be against the whole 
Court, for the Lord Keeper,^ the Lord Treasurer, and the Lord Privy 
Seal are the sole judges in this Court, and the other barons and lords 

I are but assistants/ Upon this Hawarde comments 'which is not 
the law, as I believe, for it proceeds by the majority of voices, not by 
experience.' That Hawarde's statement of the practice is correct we 

I have Hudson's testimony. * The greater part of the judgments of 
the presence maketh the sentence, but if they be equal, the voice of 
the supreme judge maketh the sentence, as I have before related 
to be judged in the Earl of Northampton's case,' &c.'* But both 
Hawarde and his interlocutor appear to have forgotten the tail of the 
judgement of 1493, that the three there declared to be judges were 
bound by the advice of the King's justices. Eichard Crompton, 
whose book intituled * L'Authoritie et Jurisdiction des Courts de la 
Maiestie de la Roygne ' was published in 1594, accepts the judgement 
of 1493.^ 

Nevertheless, the contention that the three officials named in the 
Act of 1487 were the sole judges seems to prove too much, for Hudson, 
who as clerk of the Court had access to records now lost or destroyed, 
tells us that * about the tenth, eleventh, and twelfth years of that 
king (Eenry 7) these cases were more often heard before the 
President of the Council than before the Chancellor, Treasurer, or 
Privy Seal ; whereby it is most manifest, by the subsequent as by 
the precedent practice, that the Court then sat not by virtue of that 
statute, but sat as they antiently had done, and by as antient, if 
not more antient authority than any Court in Westminster hall.' ^ 
Inasmuch as the President of the Council was not added till 1529,** 

* £. Plowdeo, Reports (ed. 1779), p. See p. xxxiv, n. 2, supra. 

393. " Ed. 1637, p. 29. This is reproduced 

'^ * Les Keportes del Cases in Camera without question or comment in the Eughsh 

Stellata,' ed. by W. P. Baildon (privately versions of this part of his work, • Star 

printed), 1894, p. 4. Chamber Cases,' ed. 1630, p. 13, and ed. 

^ This name does not occur in Foss's 1C41, p. 13. 

Lists of Counsel between 1558 and 1603. ' * Of the Court of Star Chamber,' p. 16. 

' Lives ' Ac, v. 621 ; vi. 35. " The President of the King's Council 

* The statute 5 Eliz. c. 18 (1563), * An was not added till the 21 Hen. 8, c. 20 
Acte declaring the auctoritee of the Lord (1529), 'An Acte that the presidente of 
Keeper of the Great Seale of England and the Kynges Counsaile shalbe associate with 
the Lord Chancellour to bee one,' affirms the Chauncellor and Treasourer of Eng- 
itself to be declaratory of the common londe and the Keper of the Kinges Privie 
law. '. Seale.' This statute, after reciting the 

* ♦ Of tne Court of Star Chamber,' p. 223. ' statute 3 Hen. 7, c. 1 (1487), to which it 



xliv 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



it is an inevitable conclusion from these premises that the Court sat 
without a judge at all. Further, if the inference from the terms of 
the judgement and exemplification in the Abbot of Shrewsbury's case 
be justified, that the only one of the three officials mentioned in the 
statute of 1487 then sitting and delivering judgement was the 
Chancellor, the judgement could not have run, as it did, in the name 
of that judge * and other the lordes of the Kyngys moost honorable 
counseill.' Hudson carries the case a step further. * Sometimes, when 
neither the Treasurer, President, Chancellor nor Privy Seal were 
present, other lords of the Council sat for the determining of causes, 
which proveth that they are all judges of this court ' (p. 23). 

If it be permissible to infer from the practice of the Star Chamber 
in the reigns of Henry 7 and Henry 8 the theory held by it as to the 



does not give any title, enacts * that from 
hensforth the Chaunceller Tresorer of Eng- 
land and the prescdent of the Kynges moost 
honourable Councell attendyng upon his 
mooste honorable person for the tyme 
beyng, and the keper of the Kynges Pryve 
Seale or two of them, callynge unto them 
one Bysshop and one Temporall Lorde of 
the Kynges moost honorable Councell and 
the two Chefe Justices of the Kynges 
Benehe and the Comon Place for the 
tyme beyng, or other two of the Kynges 
Justices in their absence, upon any Bill or 
Informacyon hereafter to be put in (to) 
the Chaunceller of England, Treasorer, 
Presydent of the Kynges seyd moost honor- 
able Councell or Keper of the Kynges Pryye 
Seale* for the tyme beyng, for any mis- 
behavyng before rehersed, from hensforth 
have full power and auctorite to call before 
them by Wrytt of Pryve Scale suche mys- 
doers and them and other by their dis- 
cression by whome the truthe may be 
knowen to examyn and suche as they shall 
fynde defectyve to punysshe them after 
their demerytes after the forme and effecte 
of the said former Estatute and of all 
other Estatutes therof tofore made and nat 

* The author of the article ' Camera Stel- 
lata' is named by Heame as (Francis Tate, 
but Miss Scofield in the Appendix to her book 
adduces reasons for identifying him with 
Lambard (p. 81 ), and the treatise as represeu- 
tative of views afterwards discarded in the 
' Archeion.' This aathor reads into the later 
statute an exclusive appointment as judges of 
the four officials named, a gloss which a com- 
parison of the texts does not appear to me to 
sustain. He also draws another distinction 
between the two statutes as follows : ' Whereas 
the former statute willeth to have the said 
offenders punished after the form of the 
statute hereof to be made, this other statute 
^21 Hen. 8, c. 20) refcrreth the punishment to 



repelled nor expyred, in lyke maner and 
forme as they shulde and ought to be 
punysshed yf they were therof convycted 
after the due ordre in the Kynges Laws.' 
The points in which this Act differs from 
that of 1487 are as follows : in the first 
place, its principal object, as its title shows, 
was to add the Lord President to the 
officials named as judges. Secondly, by 
the earlier Act, the information was to be 
put to the Chancellor; by the later Act 
there is no specific instruction on the 
point. The papers here published show 
that in the time of Henry 7 the usage 
was undetermined. With the tendency to 
exalt the prerogative the practice crystal- 
lised into the laying of informations to 
the King, which, as has been seen. Coke 
mentions as in his time the regular course. 
Thirdly, in the Act of 1629, the officials 
named are authorised to call offenders 
before them * by Wrytt of Pryve Scale.* »» 
The words of the Act of 1487 are *by 
Wrytte or Pry vye seall.* If the word * of ' 
in the later Act is correct, it suggests the 
disuse of Letters Missive under the Privy 
Seal for the more summary form of a 
Writ. 

the form of tliat and of all statutes before 
that time made and being in force.' But this 
argument depends upon a misreading of the 
Act. The words of the Act 'Pro Camera 
Stellata ' in the Statutes of the Realm are * to 
punyssh theym after their demerites after the 
forme and effecte of Statutes therof made,' or 
in the contemporary French version, * joust la 
fourme & effecte dez statuitz ent faitz.' 

b The text of 21 Hen. 8, c. 20, in the ' Statutes 
of the Realm ' is printed * by Wrytt (of) Pryve 
Scale,' and the note 8 ('or' printed copies) 
attached to the bracketed word. I interpret 
this to mean that the MS. text gives the word 
* of,' and that the bracket is merely added to 
call attention to the word. 



INTRODUCTION xlv 

relations to its composition as a tribunal of the statute * Pro Camera 
Stellata,' it would seem that its interpretation of that Act was some- 
what as follows, that the Act gave a statutory legality to the issue of 
writs of Privy Seal by the Chancellor, Treasurer, and Privy Seal, or 
two of them, though it did not confer upon them, except in the 
matter of interrogatories, any judicial power which they did not 
already enjoy in virtue of their oflSce of members of the King's 
Council. That in other respects the former practice of calling in 
the King's justices as legal advisers was maintained, but that the Act, 
while giving its sanction to and otherwise directing this course, did not 
invest any person not being a member of the Council with the right 
of pronouncing judgement in the name of the Court of the King's 
Council sitting in the Star Chamber, while such persons as were 
members of the Council enjoye^ that right by prescription indepen- 
dently of the Act.^ 

The difficulty still remains of the contradiction between Coke's 
assertion that it had been resolved that the King*s justices were 
judges of the Court and the form of the Court's judgements. Here it 
may be permissible to hazard a preliminary hypothesis which subse- 
quent investigation may correct. It is agreed on all hands that, 
as the forms in use shew, the Court of the Star Chamber was, in 
some way or other, affiliated to the King's Council. This fact 
naturally suggests that the procedure of the Council before the statute 
of 1487 may throw light on these obscurities. A case is printed in 
Sir H. Nicolas's * Proceedings and Ordinances of the Privy Council of 
England,' iii. 313, under the date Nov. 4, 7 Hen. 6 (1428). The record 
sets forth that * on the fourth day of November in the seventh year 
Cheny, Babyngton, Juyn and all the rest of the justices were sepa- 
rately questioned before the King's Council in the Star Chamber 
concerning the giving of advice ' as to the manner in which a certain 
oflFender against the shipping laws should be dealt with. * They said ' 
that for reasons which they gave it was desirable to pursue a certain 
course, viz. to allow the delinquent, who had acknowledged his 
offence, to pay a fine. * To which advice the lords yielded and ordered 
[mandarunt] the Treasurer ' accordingly. The three justices here 
mentioned were respectively Chief Justice of the King's Bench, Chief 
Justice of the Common Pleas, and Chief Baron of the Exchequer. 
Here it is clear, as in the Abbot of Shrewsbury's case, that while the 
advice to the lords was given by the justices upon request, the man- 
damus issued from the lords of the Council. The same form was 

' This seems to be the view of Lambard. ♦ Archeion ' (1635), pp. 16G-7. 



xlvi COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

followed in the case of petitions addressed by the Commons to the 
King. In 1437 the Commons complained that no action had been 
taken upon them and no redress granted. They pray, therefore, 
* that the said petitions shall be delivered to the lords of your most 
wise Council the which, there being called to them the justices and other 
persons learned in your law, if need be, may have power by authority 
of the said Parliament ... to hear and determine the said petitions ; 
and that these thus determined, with the advice and assent aforesaid, 
shall be enacted, enrolled and put on record in the roll of your said 
Parliament.' ^ Here the function of the justices is less clearly set out. 
In the fifth year of Henry 6 (Sept. 1, 1426-August 81, 1427) a 
series of articles was drawn up for the conduct of the business of the 
Council.* Of these the fourteenth runs as follows : * Item ; for asmuch 
as it is lykly that many matieres shalle be treted afore the Counsaille, 
the which toucheth the Kynges Prerogatyve and Freehold on that oo(n) 
par tie, and other of his Subgittes on that other ; in the which matiers 
the Counsaill is not lerned to kepe the Kynges right and the parties 
both withouten th'advis of the Kinges Justices, which been lerned 
both in his Prerogatives and in his Common Lawe; that in all 
suche matieres, his juges be called thereto, and their advis, with their 
names also, to be entred of Recorde, what and howe thei determyne 
and advyse therynne.'^ In the sense that the advice of the 
King's justices did not bind the King's Council, sitting as a Court of 
Judicature, it might be said that they were not judges of the Court, 
and, as has been seen, its judgement was not delivered as theirs. But, 
assuming these ordinances to have been regarded as authoritative, the 
proviso that the advice of the justices should be * entred of Recorde ' 
made, it would seem, that advice indispensable to the validity of the 
judgements. It is true that the ordinance only contemplates the case 
where the King and his subjects appear to be involved in a conflict 
of rights. It may be that the doctrine affirmed by Hudson (p. 
130), that * every suit in this Court is the King's suit,' was invented 
by the King's justices in order to bring them within this ordi- 
nance and elevate their advice, in all cases, into matter of record. 
Upon this basis it is easy to see how the argument of Eliza- 
bethan controversialists may have been constructed. *A record' 
is defined by Coke as a monument or act judicial before a judge or 
judges in a court of record entred in parchment in the right roll.' ^ 
A judgement of the King's Council might be contended to be such a 

' Rot. Pari. iv. 606. » Rot. Pari. v. 408, b. 

- Rot. Pari. V. 407, b. * 3 Inst. 71. 



INTRODUCTION xlvii 

record,^ and the King's justices before whom the act judicial was done 
and entered judges of the Court so doing and entering it.^ 

What, then, is the meaning of the provision in the statute of 
1487 for ' calling to hym a Bisshopp and a temporall Lord of the 
Eynges most Honorable Councell ' ? If we divest our minds of the 
hyperbole of the Jacobean writers to whom the Star Chamber, in the 
plenitude of its arrogated powers, appeared * the most honourable 
court (our parliament excepted) there is in the Christian world,' ^ it 
will be apparent that the privilege of trying cases of misdemeanour, 
without a salary for so doing, was onerous and uninviting. If this be 
so, the statutory * call ' imposed a duty which members of the Council 
were not solicitous to assume. It was perhaps not until the Star 
Chamber became the weapon of a political party that desire was felt to 
take active part in its proceedings. The composition of the Court as 
contemplated by the Act of 1487 was not a novelty. In the Close Roll 
of 29 Ed. 4, m. 26, d, is a record of the Council sitting in the Star 
Chamber for the transaction of legal business on March 7, 1355. 
The members present are the Archbishop of York, Chancellor, the 
Lord Treasurer, who was the Bishop of Winchester, the King's Cham- 
berlain, the Keeper of the Privy Seal, John Beauchamp, a baron, and 
others of the Council. In 1867 the Chancellor, the Treasurer, the 

* By the decision of 1493 it was held entry of the foregoing proviso that the 

that the three officials who * called ' the judgements of the Coonoil shoold be 

Court of the Star Chamber were bound to entered of record had as a legal basis 

so summon the judges and to give judge- for this argument. The maxim of Qlan- 

ment according to their advice. * Mes les ville was ' Nulla curia recordum habet 

Justices ten(aient) in le premier cas [i.e. generaliter praster curiam domini Regis* 

the case of the Act * Pro Camera Stellata '] (viii. 9, ed. 1604) ; but he adds : ' Item 

qe 11 fuit erreur si le Chancelier, Treasurer recordum potest habere quelibet curia ex 

<Src. nappelle les autres A firent par lour beneficio principis/ although he then seems 

avisement par cause qe le Statut issint ceo to limit the grant to an entry on the roll of 

limite ' &c, Y. £. £. T. 8 Hen. 7, pi. 7, the King's Court. According to Britton, 

f . 13. See as to this Plowden, * Reports ' the sheriff when sitting by virtue of the 

(1779), p. 393, and Coke, 4 Inst. f. 62, and King's writ had the power of record as a 

cp. p. xxxiv, n. 2, supra. In the case of King's justiciary (Britton, i. xx. viii. 2. 

Daniel O'Connell's appeal to the House of Ed. F. M. Nichols, 1865, i. 136). Qu. 

Lords, in which judgement was given on whether the direction of the King in 

Sept. 4, 1844, the opinion of the judges Council, above quoted, constituted the 

was asked for, but not followed. Lord Council as a court of justice a court of 

Brougham in his judgement said : * We do record. Coke's test of a court of record 

not refer the question to their decision. is that a writ of error lies against it, on 

. . . Wf^ take their answers not as our rule, which account he denies that the Court of 

or even as our guide, perhaps, but certainly Chancery in the exercise of its equitable 

as entitled to our greatest attention '(' State jurisdiction is a court of record (3 Inst. 

Trials,' N.S., V. 846 [1893]). Yet Brougham 71). Hudson seems disposed to contest 

was in the minority which concurred with the denial of the Star Chamber to be a 

the majority of the judges. The position court of record, though he rather evades 

of the judges in the House of Lords and in the question. ' Of the Court of Star Cham- 

the Star Chamber is, as the above shews, ber,' pp. 5-7. 
by no meana the same. * £. Coke, 4 Inst. 65. 

' It is doubtful what authority the 



xlviii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Justices, and other discreet (sages) personages hear a suit in the Star 
Chamber.^ In the case of Straonge v. Eynaston, heard by the Council 
in 1467, the members present were the Chancellor, who was Bobert 
Stillington, Bishop of Bath and Wells, the Lord Treasurer (Earl 
Ryvers), Thomas Rotherham, Keeper of the Privy Seal, the Prior of 
St. John of Jerusalem, a temporal peer, the Lords Dudley and Wenlok, 
Thomas Kent, LL.D., a former clerk of the Council, three knights 
and two other commoners, besides Richard Langport, the clerk.^ 

The contention of Hallam is that the statute 21 Hen. 8, c. 20, 
which added the President of the Council to the judges of the 
Court, is * a decisive proof that it (the statutory Court of the Star 
Chamber) still existed as a tribunal perfectly distinct from the Coun- 
cil itself.' ^ But the recorded constitution of the Court in the Abbot 
of Shrewsbury's case, which effects a breach in this conclusion, does 
not stand alone. In the * Liber Intrationum,' or Minute-book of 
the King's Council, among other entries of business assigned by the 
Act * Pro Camera Stellata ' to the statutory Court of the Star Chamber 
is one as follows : — 

' Anno nono h. 7, secundo Junii. 

* Coram Cane. Domino Dynham Thes. Husie & Brian prmcipal. 
Judices ^ et principal. Baro. Aylmer Hunter et Picroste bound to the 
peace and enioyned that they were noe mans Liuerie neither serue 
anie man but the Kinge and my Lord prince upon paine of xl. li.* ^ 

The wearing of liveries is not, it is true, an offence under the 
statute of 1487,^ which was not aimed at minor offenders ; but the 
giving of liveries was such. Among the mischiefs struck at, it played 
so large a part in the public eye that, as the latest historian of the 
Court has pointed out, the title prefixed by Caxton, its first printer, 
to the statute subsequently intituled in the Rolls of Parliament ' Pro 
Camera Stellata,' was * Yeuynge of lyuerey &c.' In the absence of 
illustrative evidence one way or the other, it might be inferred that 

Close BoU, 41 Ed. 3, m. 13, ib. 40«. on the taker, and 8 Ed. 4, o. 2 (1468), 

' F. Palgrave, ' Essay * Ac, p. 142. As oonfirming and amplifying the earlier sta- 

to Langport see further, p. 12, n. 29, infra. tote. But the Courts prescribed in both 

* * Const. Hist.' (1872), i. 52. statutes in which the penalties were to be 

* Sic. sued were the Common Law Courts and 

* B. M. Add. MS. 4521, art. 9, f. 113 ; certain local Courts, not the Council. 
Hargr.MS.216. C. L. Scofield, * The Court It may be added that the case is ten 
of Star Chamber * (Chicago, 1900), p. 5, n. 5. years before the 19 Hen. 7, o. 14, * De 

* Upon this point Miss Scofield is in- Betentionibus illicitis ' (1504), made the 
accurate. There were, however, two sta- I taking of a livery a statutory offence triable 
totes against the receiving of liveries, viz. 7 i by the Star Chamber — again an example 
Hen. 4, c. 14 (1406), which inflicted a fine of ' of legalising existing practice. 



INTRODUCTION xlix 

the offence of wearing liveries not being within the jurisdiction of the 
statutory Court, the defendants had been summoned to appear before 
a committee of the Council acting, not under the statute, but in 
reliance upon its traditional jurisdiction over offences likely to disturb 
the public peace. But the fact that the giving of liveries was an 
offence assigned to the statutory Court and the great liberality of inter- 
pretation, upon whatever hypothesis it may have been based, un- 
doubtedly placed upon its jurisdiction as conferred by the Act, 
compels the belief that the Court issuing this injunction in the year 
1494 conceived itself to be acting imder the statute of 1487. Never- 
theless, the composition of the Court, by its omission of * a Bisshopp 
and a temporall Lord of the Kynges most Honorable CounceU," 
neglects to satisfy the statute. It is less conclusive than the Abbot 
of Shrewsbury's case because of the legal difficulty as to the jurisdic- 
tion of the Court with regard to this particular offence. But it points 
in the same direction, and the united forces of the two, fortified by 
Hudson's statements, shatter the position taken up by Hallam that 
during the reign of Henry 7 and, at least, a portion of that of 
Henry 8 there existed, distinct from the Council, a Court of a uniform 
statutory composition. It may be added that there is other authority 
for stating that in the latter part of the reign of Henry 8 * one 
Privy Councillor sate in the Court alone ; sometimes there were two, 
and very seldom more.' ^ It may be that this is only true of sittings 
for the purpose of dealing, after the manner of a judge in chambers, 
with interlocutory applications. Yet the language of Hudson, who, 
both as a lawyer and clerk of the Court, was presumably precise, 
seems to exclude this solution. ' It is fit that I leave it charged that 
the Court, after the making of that statute ' (i.e. the Act ' Pro Camera 
Stellata '), ' did usually determine causes when neither treasurer, 
chancellor nor privy seal were present ; but sometimes the president 
of the council alone, and sometimes assisted by others of the council, 
above forty times in the 12 and 13 of Hen. 7. And sometimes, 
when neither the treasurer, president, chancellor, nor privy seal were 
present, other lords of the Council sat for the determining causes.' ^ 

The conclusion is that the Act of 1529 recognised the Act of 
1487, so far as regards the composition of the Court, as a 
counsel of perfection rather than as realised by actual practice, 
and desiderated rather than enforced it. The inference from its 

* Laned. MS. No. 160, p. 305, oited by Bat in Coke's day eight was regarded as 
J. Brace, * History of the Court of Star the necessary quorum. 4 Inst. f. 65. 
Chamber,* in • Archaolog.* xxv. 877 (1834). » * Of the Court of Star Chamber,* p. 28. 

c 2 



1 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

language upon which Hallam insists as ' a decisive proof ' of the 
existence of ' the Court of Star Chamber ' as a tribunal perfectly 
distinct from the Council itself breaks down upon an examination of 
its records and practice. It will be objected that it is not the function 
of statutes to adumbrate counsels of perfection, and Coke himself was 
conscious of the difficulty. After descanting upon the first conclusion 
to be drawn from the two statutes of 1487 and 1529— that this was 
not a new Court — ^he continues : * The second conclusion is that the 
Act of 3 Hen. 7 being in the affirmative is not in some things pursued 
. . . and it is a good rule, that where the Act of Hen. 7 is not pursued, 
there (if there be manyjudiciall presidents in another sort) they must 
have warrant from the ancient Court ; and yet it is good (as much as 
may be) to pursue the Act, there being no greater assurance of juris- 
diction than an Act of parliament.' ^ 

The explanation of Coke that the non-observance of the Act of 
Hen. 7 was to be justified on the ground that it was * in the affirmative ' 
is not easy to follow. If it means that its tenour was not prohibitory, 
the observation is lacking in point, for it might be predicated of 
enabling Acts generally. It would seem rather to signify that the 
Act, being but an affirmation of existing practice, impUcitly sanc- 
tioned the continuance of those variations from that practice which 
had from time to time occurred. Yet this is hardly a legal justi- 
fication for the infraction of what appears to be, on the face of it, a 
positive and indeed exclusive constitution of the Court. Nevertheless, 
no trace appears throughout these papers of any plea to the jurisdiction 
of the Court on the ground that its composition did not conform to the 
statute. Hudson's researches into the Order books and decrees led 
him to single out the tenth, eleventh, and twelfth years of Henry 7 
as those in which the statute of 1487 was in this respect con- 
spicuously disregarded. In this volume are six answers belonging to 
this period, viz. between Michaelmas Term, 1494, and the end of 
Trinity Term, 1497. Upon this particular point the jurisdiction of 
the Court was unquestioned. 

There are among the documents comprised in this volume a few 
examples which disclose the minds of contemporary lawyers upon the 
nature of the Court, and incidentally help towards a solution of this 

1 4 Inst. 62. He adds as a case in as was doubtless the practice in Elizabeth's 

point that * Sir Christopher Wray, Chief time, the Lord Privy Seal always sat, 

Justice of England for a time was made which we know not to have been the case 

lord privy seal to sit in the Star Chamber earlier, though the writs were under Privy 

ne curia deficeret in justitia exhibenda.' Seal. 
This was evidently on the assumption that, 



INTRODUCTION ll 

problem. If we may assume that the papers collected together in the 
Record Office as belonging to the Court of Star Chamber are what 
they are represented to be, and were originally collected through the 
dUigence of successive clerks of the Court, as Hudson states, the 
certificate of Sir Bichard Dalabere and other justices of the peace for 
the county of Hereford, printed on p. 234, supports the theory of the 
identity of the Court of Star Chamber with the Council sitting judicially. 
The justices of the peace cite as the ground of their proceeding the 
Act 18 Hen. 4, c. 7 (1411). They give a substantially correct version 
of the French text, which is to the effect that if the justices of the 
peace fail to ascertain the circumstances of any riot that has taken 
place within their county and to punish the offenders, ' adonqes deinz 
un moys lors proschein ensuiant certifient les ditz Justices, trois ou 
deux de eux, & le Yiscont ou Southviscont suisditz devaunt le Boy 
& son Counseil tout le fait & les circumstances dicell, quell cer- 
tificat soit dautiel force come le presentement de xii. : sur quel 
certificat soient les ditz trespassours & meffaisours mys a responce 
& ceux qi seront trovez coupables soient puniz solonc la discrecion 
du Boy & de son dit Consail.' In accordance with these instruc- 
tions, three justices of the peace for Herefordshire and the sheriff of 
the county in 1506 returned a formal certificate of a riot in the city 
of Hereford upon which they had charged a jury who refused to 
make a presentment. The indorsement of the certificate shews that 
it was delivered to the Chancellor, who was the presiding judge of the 
Court of the Star Chamber. It is addressed : ' To the Eynge and his 
Councelle,' a style, as we know, used by and of the Star Chamber. 
But the Chancellor is not mentioned in the Act of 1411. Presumably, 
therefore, the official to take cognisance of the affair in the absence of 
the King would be the President of the Council. In 1499-1500 this 
was Bichard Fitzjames, Bishop of Bochester,^ and perhaps also in 
1506, in which year (August 2) he was promoted from Chichester to 
London, having been in 1503 translated from Bochester to Chichester.* 
That Abp. Warham, the Chancellor, should have dealt with the cer- 
tificate is some indication of the attribution to the Court of Star 
Chamber of the jurisdiction of the Council under the statute of 
Henry 4. But it is by no means conclusive, for at a period when a 
President of the Council does not appear to have existed by that 
title the Chancellor probably discharged the office.^ In 1363 the 

1 ' Select Oases in the Ooort of Beqoests/ ii. 569 ; i. 248 ; ii. 299. 
Selden Society, 1898, p. cviii. ' See an enumeration of the five great 

* J. Le Neve, * Fasti Eocl. Angl.' (1854), officers of State in Bot. Pari. iii. 72, a. 



lii COURT OP THE STAR CHAMBER 

Chancellor and the Treasurer are represented by the Commons as 
receiving * false suggestions ' contrary to the Great Charter.^ 

A similar assumption in the minds of men at the end of the 
fifteenth or the beginning of the sixteenth century of the identity of 
the Court of the Star Chamber with the King's Council sitting as a 
judicial body appears in the pleadings of the Earl of Northumberland, 
defendant in a suit brought by John Goryng. The Earl charges John 
Goryng with having been guilty in his petition of the offence known 
as Scandalum Magnatum. ' Wherfor and in consideration that the 
seid Erie is oone of the Nobyll Perys of this realme he besechith 
your good lordshippis that the seid Complaynaunt for his seid 
Bclawnderous bill may be punysshed in example of other according to 
the moste honorabill lawes and statutes in like cases ordeyned and 
prouyded ' (p. 101). The principal statute in point thus invoked was 
12 Bic. 2, c. 11, passed in 1388, which provided that the inventor and 
spreader of ' false news, lies, or such other false things ' should be 
' punished by the Advice of the Council.' It is to be observed that 
upon this matter it is to 'your good lordshippis' that the Earl 
appeals, though the address of the plaintiff is ' To the kyng oure 
soueraigne lorde.' ^ 

Again, the Abbot of St. Augustine's, Canterbury, puts in a re- 
markable plea (p. 20), apparently constructed upon the ordinances of 
Council of 1426,' the Act of 31 Hen. 6, c. 2, legalising for seven years 
the issue of writs of privy seal summoning offenders before the King 
or his Council in case of ' great riots, extortions, oppressions, and 
grievous offences,' and the Act of 1487 * Pro Camera SteUata.* In 
the absence of riot, which is not alleged against him, he pleads to the 
jurisdiction of the Court. He further pleads the Act 42 Ed. 3, c. 3, 
against the practice of citing persons by false accusation before the 
Council. This part of his answer may therefore be resolved into 
four constituent elements. Of these three are based upon the 
assumption that the Court is the old Council. The fourth part, a 
confused reference to the Act of 1487, which the draughtsman can 
scarcely have read, and which was perhaps not then yet printed, tells 
us nothing one way or the other. Another plea of no riot is set up 
by the defendant in Halle r. Essexe, heard in 1503. * There is no 
matiere of Biott surmysed in the said bill wherby he shuld be compellid 
to make answere in this Court ' (p. 176). Upon this plea it may be 
contended that, in the opinion of the defendant's counsel, the Court 

> Bot. Pari. ii. 280, a. » See H. Nicolas, * Proceedings Ac. of 

« P. 96. See further p. 102, n. 17. Privy Council* (1834), iir. 214, 217. 



INTRODUCTION liii 

was the creation of the statute of 1487, and its jurisdiction strictly 
limited thereby. But, assuming the limitation of jurisdiction, the 
statutory origin of the Court is not a necessary inference. Indeed, it 
is arguable that the plea of no riot descended to the lawyers from 
the days before the Act of 1487, and was a plea to the jurisdiction of 
the Council as regularised and limited by the Act of 1458 (81 Hen. 6, 
c. 2).^ Undoubtedly the * misbehavyng before rehersed,' to which the 
Act of 1487 was applicable, covered more oflfences than that of riot, 
while the Act of 1463 enumerates * great Riots, Extortions, Oppres- 
sions, and grievous offences against his [the King's] Peace and Laws,' 
which seem to be ejusdem generis as riot. But it is also true that in 
common estimation ' that which was principally aimed at in the Act 
[of 1487] was Force, and the two cheife supports of Force, Combina- 
tion of multitudes, and Maintenance or Headship of great Persons.' ^ 
• Nevertheless Bacon says, ' The authoritie of the Star Chamber, which 
before subsisted by the ancient Common-Lawes of the Bealme, was 
confirmed in certain cases by Act of ParUament.' A plea of no riot, 
therefore, would not, in his opinion, imply that the Star Chamber 
was of statutory origin. 

There is evidence to shew that, after the Star Chamber had 
become a vigorous Court, constantly exercised in the punishment of 
riots, the Council retained an independent seisin of the offence of 
riot, so that the plea of ' no riot ' might be made either to the Council 
or to the Star Chamber indifferently. It is further to be remembered 
that the pleadings of the Abbot of St. Augustine's point rather to pro- 
ceedings before the Council than before the Star Chamber, while no 
mention of the Star Chamber occurs in Halle v. Essexe. However 
this may be, the evidence that the Council still concerned itself with 
riot belongs to the year 1500 and is as follows: *16 Hen. 7, 
16 Novembris apud Woodstocke causa inter Nicholaum Leeche & 
Joannam uxorem eius contra Nicholaum Galon, Joannem Moore & 
cseteros quoad titulum terrarum & tenementorum in controversia inter 
partes predictas & fractionem pacis superpositam in biUis querelaB 
remittitur Consilio Domini Regis in Camera stellata apud Westminster 
ubi eadem causa pendet indecisa, ibidem determinanda, & quoad 
riotam suppositam in billa, partes predicts habent diem crastinum 

' Gp. Bot. Pari. v. 266. It mast not be | apparently a principle that a formal repeal 

( aBsomed that, because an Act was tem- was necessary even of a temporary Act. 

! porary, as was that of 1453, it was in- \ See farther pp. Ixi and Ixiv, infra. 

Tariably treated as expired. I have come * F. Bacon, Viscoant St. Alban, * The 

V<\ across jadicial proeeedmgs in the sixteenth Historic of the Baigne of King Henry the 

i oentary taken on expired statutes, it being Seaenth (ed. 1622), p. 64. 



hv COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

purificationis beataB Marise proxime futurum ad probandum per eos 
allegata concernentia dictam riotam ubicunque & hoc sub poena 
eorum cuiuelibet 110 librarum.' ^ Woodstock was a royal manor, and 
this may possibly have been the reason for bringing the suit before the 
King in Council, though there is no indication of this in the entry as 
printed by GsBsar. Doubtless the question of title was remitted to the 
Star Chamber as involving legal questions on which the expert opinion 
there available would be important ; but it is curious that the matter 
of the riot should have been separately dealt with by the Council 
itself, and unless the reason of this was that it was a manorial offence — 
which there is nothing to shew — the conclusion is that both tribunals 
exercised concurrent jurisdiction in these cases. On the other hand, 
from the same source comes the record that a cause was remitted ' in 
cameram stellatam pro eo quod concernit riotam.' ^ 

It is uncertain, therefore, whether the plea of ' no riot ' was to the 
jurisdiction of the Council or to that of the statutory court. Yet these 
were probably not two mutually exclusive conceptions. It has been 
observed that in the Elizabethan age, when these legal positions were 
subjected to analysis, the justification of the extension of the Star 
Chamber's jurisdiction beyond the articles of * misbehavyng * enume- 
rated in the statute of 1487 was based upon the contention that the 
Court of the Star Chamber was, as its forms ran, the King's Council 
with the indeterminate authority exercised by it before that statute 
was passed. This proposition was not uncontroverted. Hudson, after 
laying down that ' the Court subsisteth by antient prescription, and 
hath neither essence nor subsistence by that act of parliament ' 
(8 Hen. 7, c. 1), continues : * And it is most sure that it is a received 
opinion that the court should meddle with no other causes than are 
expressed in the statute 3 Hen. 7, c. 1 ; and I well remember that the 
Lord Chancellor Egerton would often tell that in his time, when he was 
a student, Mr. Serjeant Lovelace put his hand to a demurrer in this 
Court, for that the matter of the bill contained other matters than 
were mentioned in the statute of 8 Hen. 7, and Mr. Plowden, that 
great lawyer, put his hand thereto first, whereupon Mr. Lovelace 
easily followed. But the cause being moved in Court Mr. Lovelace, 
being a young man, was called to answer the error of his antient Mr. 
Plowden, who very discreetly made his excuse at the bar that Mr. 
i Plowden's hand was first unto it and that he supposed he might in 

* Sir J. CffiBar, 'Acts, Orders, and Proo6ediiigsoftheCk)art of Bequests' (1697), 
Decrees made by the King and his Council ' p. 26. Printed by Miss Boofield, p. 28. 
in * The Ancient State, Authoritie and ' Gassar, p. 62 ; Scofield, p. 28. 



INTRODUCTION Iv 

1 any thing follow St. Augustine. And although it were then over- 
ruled, yet Mr. Serjeant Bichardson, thirty years after, fell upon the 
same rock and was sharply rebuked for the same ; for the causes 
mentioned in that statute are but seven in number : 1, Maintenances. 
2, Giving of liveries. 3, Having retainers. 4, Imbracery. 5, Jurors 
receiving money. 6, Untrue demeanors of sheriffs in false returns 
and pannels. 7, Bouts and riots. A small theme to exercise that 
Court ; where, indeed, all the principal offences here examined are not 
once touched, as forgery and perjury, frauds, contempts of proclama- 
tions, duels, and a multitude of others which I shall hereafter recite. 
But I will not dwell upon this point, seeing all that have written of this, 
as Mr. Lambert and Mr. Crompton, have made this no question.' ^ 

In this connexion the indorsement in Smyth v. Broke (p. 42), 
already mentioned,^ deserves special attention. It is an action for 
defamation, a fact that is commented upon elsewhere.^ The original 
indorsement appears to have ordered the appearance of the defendant 
' coram domino Bege ubicunque fuerit.' This was the form in use for 
summons before the Council attendant upon the person of the King, 
as distinguished from the Star Chamber at Westminster. An example 
of this has just been seen in the Woodstock case. Another occurs in 
the * Acts Orders and Decrees made by the King and his Council ' col- 
lected by Sir Julius CsBsar.* * 15 Augusti 9 Hen. 7, apud Windsor. 
Memorandum quod eodem die in Camera ad hoc assignata comparuit 
Tho. Cresset armiger super quadam recognitione, ut ibidem Thom 
asseruit, facta coram domino Cancellario in Camera Stellata, ad per- 
sonaliter comparendum coram domino Bege in Consilio suo ubicumque 
dicto 15 die Augusti : Et habet ad personaliter comparendum de die 
in diem quousque aliter per dictum dominum regem & Consilium 
suum in hac materia decretum fuerit &c. et hoc sub periculo incum- 
benti.' In Smyth v. Broke the indorsement is varied, and appear- 
ance at Westminster, i.e. presumably in the Star Chamber, there 
substituted for the form * vbicunque.' This is the only distinct indi- 
cation in these papers subsequent to 1487 of the fact that the Council 

1 * Of the Coart of Star Chamber/ p. ' Ployden had set there handes to a demurror 

51. The inoident narrated by Hudson is for snohe a bill of periurye, & were con- 

oonfirmed by Hawarde, who adds the dates. uented & bitterlye reprehended in this 

, * 81 Oct. 1606. ... It was resolaed by all Courte, to whioh Lovelace made his ex- 

the Coorte that this Goorte may determyne case c&c' Les Beportes del Gases in Gamera 

all penuries at the Gommon lawe, A that Stellata, pp. 301-2. Sir Thomas Bromley 

it was an aunciente Courte longe before was Lord Chancellor 1579-87. 

. H[enry] 7 & determyned Causes, <fe B[ioh- * P. xxvii, supra. » P. oxxxii, infra, 

aid] 3 sate judiciallye in this Courte : & * 'The Ancient State, Authoritie and 

,' the Lo. Chauncellor sayde that in Chan- Proceedings of the Court of Bequests, 

i ceUor Bromlie's time, Serg** Lovelace & Anno 1597,' p. 2 ; Scofield, p. 27. 



Ivi COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

continued to exercise an indeterminate legal jurisdiction side by side 
with the Star Chamber. The capital distinction between the two was 
[ that the Council heard causes in private ; the Star Chamber was, as 
! Bacon phrased it, * an open Council ' or public court.^ Archbishop 
' Grindal was informed that ' her Majesty findeth it expedient to have 
the world understand her actions in this matter ; and also to have 
the Archbishop's misdemeanors declared and to call him to answer to 
the same : therefore he is to answer thereto in that open place/ i.e. the 
Star Chamber.' Sir John Smythe complained to Burghley that in- 
stead of being called before the Council Table, he had been brought 
* into a public audience in the Star Chamber.* ' In another instance 
the Council expresses resentment at the transfer by a complainant of 
his case to the Star Chamber.^ The other differences were that after 
the statute of 1487 the judges and others do not appear to have been 
summoned to the Council Table for the hearing of cases, but only to the 
Court of the Star Chamber,^ and that, according to Coke,^ the Star 
Chamber then received the power of administering interrogatories to 
be answered on oath by the statute. This practice had been surren- 
dered by the Council in deference to the protest of the Commons in 
1851, except in certain ill-defined cases, and had not been afterwards 
resumed.^ 

Notwithstanding, therefore, the existence in the Council of a con- 
current judicial power, subject to certain restrictions, a continuous 
legal tradition, not uncontested in Ehzabeth's time, has been seen to 
imply the continuity of the Court of the Star Chamber with the 
King's Council sitting as a court of judicature, and to deny it a statu- 
tory origin. From the same impUcation the lawyers of the reigns of 
Henry 7 and Henry 8 appear to have inferred that the composi- 
tion of the Court was not necessarily that prescribed by the statute, 
and this doctrine was extended from its composition to its juris- 
diction. It is strange that upon the former question we have no 
indication, beyond Coke's vague doctrine of affirmation, of the legal 
reasoning by which the statutory composition came to be considered 
non-essential. Nevertheless it is perhaps possible to fill the gap 
conjecturally. 

It was laid down by the Court in 1606 that the full description of 

> Soofield, p. 59. • E. Coke, 4 Inst. 68. 

* J. Stiype, * Life of Grindal/ p. 348 ; ' Bot. ParL ii. 228, a. * Mes de ohose 
Soofield, p. 68, n. 4. qae toaohe vie on membre, contemptz on 

* S. P. Dom. 1595-97, pp. 422-423, ib. excesse, soit fait oome ad este ase cea [qa. 

* Acts of Priv. Ck). vii. 405 (21 Deo. oeo] en arere,' a rather elastic excepting 
1570) ; Soofield, p. 56. clause. 

» B. M. Lansd. MS. 59, art. 64, ib. p. 43. 



INTRODUCTION Ivii 

its process was 'Coram Domino Bege in Camera stellata coram 
Consilio ibidem.' ^ This legal fiction, translated occasionally into 
reality by Henry 7 and James 1,* tacitly undermined, I conceive, 
the imperativeness of the statutory composition. It was admitted on 
all hands that the sovereign was the fountain of justice, and the chan- 
cellor and the judges his delegates. Where the source was, the 
derivative streams were superfluous. The Court was always supposed 
to be held before the Eong, for whom a seat was reserved empty,^ and 
whether the officials nominated by the Act were sitting or not, was, in 
the presence, real or constructive, of him from whom its jurisdiction 
flowed, a matter of no legal import. 

It is easy to believe that, whatever the legal justification for 
neglect of the statute of 1487 as to the composition of the Court, 
some was demanded by circumstances unless the whole system of 
prerogatival justice was to fall into disuse. Henry 7 was perhaps 
less migratory than his successor, but the Patent Rolls and the Privy 
Purse expenses indicate the frequency of his progresses. These were 
probably accompanied by the Lord Privy Seal, who was at this time 
President of the migratory Court of Requests. The Lord Privy Seal at 
the time of the passing of the Act of 1487 was Richard Foxe, Bishop 
of Winchester.* Foxe, however, was habitually employed by Henry 7 
in diplomatic missions. At the time of the passing of the Act of 1487 
he was at Edinburgh, negotiating a treaty with James 3 of Scotland.^ 
He accompanied Henry 7 to Boulogne in October 1492, and after- 
wards negotiated the peace of Staples (November 3),^ and the ' Inter- 
cursus Magnus ' with Pliilip, Archduke of Austria, in 1496.^ Upon 

' J. Hawarde, ' Les Beportes ' &o.j his subjects in such their necessities may 

p. 302. provoke, as to his owne Boyall person ; and 

* ' But to omit that of Rich. 3 and r wherein there is place left for him to sit, 
sundry other Records of other times, con- the which our Bangs in person have often- 
curring in the same teetimonie, those twelve ' times frequented and were [qu. where] 

I severall stately Sessions, honoured with the assisted with such men of NobUitie, Wise- 

\ Boyall presence of King Henry 7, and some- . dome and Learning as he shall ohuse, he 

times with almost forty of his Councell in ' may in Boyall presence use his judiciall 

the 1 and 2 yeeres of his Beigne, and authoritie, or otherwise for the time being 

' sundry others performed by his Chancellors abstaine to be present there, and leave the 

and Councell in the same place, doe proceedings to those selected men.' These 

assuredly teach that it was the ordinarie men, he says, * we doe commonly call the 

Councell-Chamber of the King, whensoever King's Councell,' which he proceeds to 

he and his Court did lye and sojoume at identify, in this its judicial capacity, with 

his Palace in Westminster, frequented no the King's Council sitting in the Star 

lesse for deliberation on matters of estate Chamber. 

than for decreeing eztraordinarie suits and * He had been appointed on Feb. 24, 

Causes of Complaint.' W. Lambard, 1487. W. Campbell, ' Materials ' &c., ii. 150. 

• Archeion,' p. 163. * Bymer, * Foedera,' xii. 329-331. 

• W. Lambard, 'Archeion' (ed. 1635), • lb. 499. 
p. 101. * 1 doe affirme that the King hath ' lb. 579. 
a supreme Court of Prerogative whereunto 



Iviii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the occasion of James 4's invasion of England, in the summer of 
1497, Bacon represents Foxe as himself attending to the defence of 
the frontier.^ Such are but samples of his preoccupations, so that 
Bacon, in mentioning the part he took in the marriage of Arthur, 
Prince of Wales, to Katharine of Aragon, remarks of him that he 
' was not only a graue Counsellor for Warre or Peace, but also a good 
Surueyour of Workes and a good Master of Ceremonies, and any 
thing else that was fit for the Actiue part belonging to the seruice of 
Court or State of a great king.' * He remained in oflSce as Lord Privy 
Seal and constantly occupied with diplomatic and other employments 
till the beginning of 1516. In June 1501 Thomas Howard, Earl 
of Surrey, was appointed Lord Treasurer. To his occupation as a 
diplomatist, in which business he was sometimes employed together 
with the Lord Privy Seal,' he added that of a soldier. It is scarcely 
possible that the meetings of the Court of the Star Chamber could 
have been regular had they awaited the statutory quorum of two out 
of the three great officials named. In that case the Court would have 
afforded little resort for private suits, a consequence more to be depre- 
cated in the eyes of the first two Tudors, who cherished it as an 
instrument of prerogative, than was a departure from the wording of a 
statute. The historians of the Court tell us, on the contrary, that it 
had ' a continued session in term time ^ and day given over from time 
to time. So you shall find it in the reign of Hen. 7 and Hen. 8 as well 
as now and then more continual without days of intermission, whereas 
now the court sitteth ordinarily but two days in the week, the same 
then sitting, for the most part, every day of the week.' * 

If it be asked why Henry 7 gave a statutory composition to a Court 
which, as he must have foreseen, could only at occasional intervals 
fulfil the conditions of its statutory existence, it is difficult to find any 
answer other than that given by Smith, Mill, Cowel, and Hudson.^ 
If the judges of 1498 were right, the so-called Court of Star 
Chamber during the exercise of much of its activity in the reigns 
of Henry 7 and Henry 8 was no Court. It was trying the offences 
committed to it by the Act of 1487 in the absence of the quorum 

> 'Historieof the Baigne of King Henry Star Chamber before 1487. See farther, 

the Seuenth/ p. 173. p. Ixviii, infra. 

' * Historie,' p. 204. * But the accounts of the dinners of the 

* E.g. in 1507 and 1508. Bymer, Ck)art and the Book of Entries (* Liber 
* Feed.' xiii. 201. Intrationom *), temp. Hen. 7 and Hen. 8, 

* Hudson, p. 5. It is to be observed rather indicate that the Court did not sit 
that in this, as in the rest, the Court of the more than three days a week. Seofield, 
Star Chamber sitting after 1487 followed p. 68, n. 3. 

the practice of the Council sitting in the * See pp. xxxix-xli, supra. 



TNTRODUOTION lix 

of two of the three officials designated by that Act as the sole judges 
of the Court. But this could not have been intended by Henry 7- 
He, at any rate, contemplated the organisation of a practical and 
efficient tribunal. The judgement of 1498 looks, therefore, like an 
attempt prompted by the secular jealousy entertained by the Common 
Law judges against the prerogative to impair the activity of the Star 
Chamber. That in this they were absolutely unsuccessful is clear. 
Neither Henry 7 nor Henry 8 accepted their doctrine as binding, and 
the construction put upon the Act by the sovereigns was finally ratified, 
as Hudson tells us, * in Proctor's case,' in which it was resolved by 
' the three principal judges ' that ' neither did that statute (the Act of 
1487) make those lords sole judges of that Court, and yet compelled 
them to call assistants, otherwise their proceedings were erroneous, as 
it is held in 8 Hen. 7, c. 13.' ^ 

5. If, then, the essential importance of the Act of 1487 in the eyes 
of its framers lay neither in the imposition of judicial duties upon 
functionaries long before accustomed to exercise them, nor in the 
assignment of an exclusive statutory composition to an existing Court, 
nor yet in the creation of a Court de novo, it seems to follow that we 
must look for it in the sphere of jurisdiction. What was the position 
of the King's Council sitting as a judicial body in the Star Chamber 
prior to and after the Act ? Sir F. Falgrave^ has long since shewn 
from the Bolls of Parliament the continuous struggles of the Commons 
against the assumption by the Council of the functions of the Common 
Law Courts, whether in civil or criminal cases. It is not necessary 
to recapitulate here the incidents of that contention. So far as private 
suits were concerned, the Council, of which, at any rate, the Court of 
the Star Chamber affected to be the successor, had for some time 
prior to 1458 settled its principles and practice. In 1890 it had 
passed an ordinance ' que les busoignes touchantes la comune ley 
soient envoiez pur estre determinez devant les justices.* ^ This was an 
unqualified concession to the demands of the Commons. In 1428 the 
disposition of the Council was less yielding. They passed a series of 
resolutions under the title, ' Thise ben certein Provisions for the good 
of the gouvernance of this Land that the Lordes which ben of the King's 
Counsaill desireth.' Of these the third was ' that all the Billes that 
comprehende materes terminable atte the Commune Lawe, that 

* * Of the Goart of Star Chamber, published by the Record Gommissionerg, 

p. 50. 1834. See also Scofield, Introd. 

' Sir F. Palgrare, ' Essay upon the ' H. Nicolas, ' Proceedings * <&c., i. 18, a. 
Original Authority of the King^s Ck>uncil,' 



Ix COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

semeth noght fenyd, be remitted there to be determined ; bat if so be 
that the discrecion of the Goansaill feele to greet myght on that oo 
syde and unmyght oo that othir.' ^ Three years later (1426) they 
amplified their powers by an additional proviso. ' Item, that all the 
billes that comprehende matiers terminable at the commune lawe be 
remitted there to be determined but if it so be that the discrecion of 
the counsaile feele to great myght on that oo syde and unmyght on 
that other orellus other cause resonable that shal moeve him.' ^ This 
last ordinance, endowing them with a power absolutely discretionary, 
received the assent of Parliament in 1429, either because of a general 
sense that more prompt and effective justice was needed or because 
the experience of three years had justified the Council's practice.^ 

Eight years later FarUament again interfered to check the power 
of the Council. Writs of subpoena, it complained, had been pur- 
chased for matters determinable by the common law of the land. 
It devised a restraint therefore upon vexatious prosecutions by pro- 
hibiting the issue of a Writ of Subpoena * until surety be found to 
satisfy the Party so grieved and vexed for bis damages and 
expences, if so be that the Matter cannot be made good which is 
contained in the Bill.' ^ Of this statute Lambard has noted that it 
provides a safeguard which forms no part of the Act of 1487.* It was 
evidently for the benefit of the defendant. Its exclusion by the later 
Act had the effect, according to him, of strengthening the power of the 
Court. 

But the principal Act, regulating the procedure of the Council 
in dealing with flagrant breaches of the public peace, was the 
81 Hen. 6, c. 2, passed in 1458. This Act has the further importance 
that it was the first which gave a statutory authority to the initia- 
tion by the Council of proceedings founded upon the jurisdiction 
which the Council had wielded from time immemorial over this class 
of offence. The Act recites the endeavours made by the Council to 
grapple with the mischief and the ineffectiveness of the machinery at 
its disposal. ' Forasmuch as the Eong our Sovereign Lord before 
this Time, upon certain Suggestions and Complaints made as well to 
him as to the Lords of his Council upon divers Persons of this his 
Realm for great Riots, Extortions, Oppressions and grievous Offences 
by them done against his Peace and Laws to divers of his liege People, 
hath given in Commandment, as well by his Writs under his Great 

» Rot. Pari. iv. 201, b. Ac, p. 81. 

* H. Nioolas, * Proceedings/ <&c., iii. 214. * 15 Hen. 6, c. 4 (1437). 

» Rot. Pari. iv. 343 ; Palgrave, ' Essay ' » * Archeion ' (1G36), p. 167. 



INTRODUCTION bd 

Seal, as by his Letters of Privy Seal, to appear before him in his 
Chancery, or before him and his Council at certain Days in the same 
Writs or Letters contained, to answer to the Premises ; which Com- 
mandments be and many Times have been disobeyed, in Contempt of 
the King our said Sovereign Lord and to the great Hindrance, 
Damage and Delay of his said Complaints in this Behalf/ By way of 
remedy Parliament, alarmed at Cade's rebellion, abandoned its time- 
honoured resistance to the issue of Writs of Privy Seal/ It was now 
enacted that disobedience to writs under the Great Seal or Letters 
under the Privy Seal should be followed by the issue by the Chancellor 
of a Writ of Proclamation to the sheriff of the county. Under this 
writ the sheriff was bound to make three proclamations on successive 
days in the county town, ordering the person summoned to appear 
before the King's Council, or before the Chancellor, within a month 
after the date of the last proclamation. On default of the appearance 
of the person so summoned the procedure varied according to his 
rank. A peer enjoyed the benefit of a respite by means of a second 
writ of proclamation, neglect to comply with which involved forfeiture 
of his place in Parliament, of any fees, offices, &c. enjoyed by him 
through grant from the Crown, and failing these of all his lands. 
For commoners the procedure was more summary. The offender not 
surrendering at the first proclamations became liable to be fined by 
the chief justices of the King's Bench and Common Pleas. If 
indigent, he was put out of the King*s protection. A proviso was 
interposed that matters determinable by law should not thereby be 
withdrawn from the King's Courts. This was nugatory, seeing that 
the Council had for twenty-seven years professed to act upon that 
principle. 

The Act of 1458 was limited to seven years. But it was 
L^ frequently the practice at this period for governments to treat as in 
force statutes which had never been formally repealed. At any rate, 
we know from a bill put in by Lord Straunge before the King and 
Council on November 12, 1467, that fourteen years later this pro- 
cedure was observed. The occasion was an instance of private 
warfare carried on in the wild country of the Marches of Wales, and 
from the case published in this volume of Straunge v. Kenaston 
(p. 274) this particular feud may be seen to have survived down to 
the eve of the accession of Henry 8. It is of importance in 

* See Bot. Pari. ii. 168, a (1847) ; 280, a 510, b (1402) ; 586, a (1406) ; 587, b (1406); 
(1363) ; 282, b (1363) ; iii. 21, a, b (1377) ; 588, b (1406) ; iv. 156, a (1421) ; v. 407, b 
266, a (1389) ; 267, b (1389) ; 471, b (1401) ; (1427) ; 409, a (1427). 



Ixii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

connexion with the question of the significance of the Star Chamber 
Act of Henry 7 to see how it was dealt with * in the Sterre Chamber 
at Westminster, the xyj daye of November, the vij yere of the regne 
of oure soueraigne Lord the King Edwarde the Fourthe ... by 
thavise of his Counsail.' ^ It is unnecessary to enter into the details 
of the dispute further than to say that an award having been ordered 
by the Council and given unfavourably to a part of the claim of the 
defendant, Boger Eynaston, he refused obedience and asserted his 
right by violence. Upon the complaint of the petitioner, John Lord 
Straunge, ' your said highnesse hath directed your lettrez under your 
signet unto the said Boger, to appire afiEbre your highnesse and the 
lords of your most notable Counsil to answare to the premisses. And 
he havyng no regard to your said commaundment . . . that to do, 
but utterly refusith, whereupon your said highnesse, by thavice of the 
lordes of your Counseill, directed your moost gracious lettrez of priue 
seale, directed unto the said Boger commaunding him straytely by 
the same upon gret paynes to appear affore your highnesse in your 
Counseille, tansware to such thyngs as there shuld be layde agenst 
him.' Here we have the first step authorised by the Act of 1463. 
Eynaston treated the King's ' messenger ' contumeliously, took away 
the letters from him, and threatened him ' that if he wold nat retourne 
agayne and say he coude nat mete with the said Boger that he shuld 
dey.' The Council behaved with singular forbearance, doubtless 
because Kynaston was a zealous Yorkist. He had fought on the side 
of the Duke of York, the King's father, against Henry 6 at Ludford on 
October 12, 1459.* For this he had been heavily fined by the victorious 
Lancastrians.^ After the accession of Edward 4 in March 1461 he 
became sheriff of Salop,^ and was active in suppressing Lancastrian 
disaffection.* Down to 1465 he had been a justice of the peace for 
the county.® These eminent services suflSciently account for the 
departure in his favour from the more peremptory procedure of the 
Act of 1453.' The Council, therefore, as though dealing with a peer, 

' See F. Palgrave, ' Essay/ p. 185, foil. commission of the peace on Deo. 1, 1468 

* Rot. Pari. V. 368. (Pat. Rolls, Ed. 4, 1462-77, p. 627), and 
" lb. sheriflf from 1469 to 1471, though in the 

* P.R.O. List of Sheriffs, p. 118. interval (Nov. 6, 1470, to April 11, 1471) he 
» Pat. Rolls, Ed. 4, 1461-67 (Aug. 12, was ejected for a Lancastrian during the 

1461), p. 98. restoration of Henry 6 (Oct. 9 to April 14, 

* lb. 670. 1471) (P.R.O. List of Sheriffs, p. 118). 
' He appears to have established his In the course of 1471, between April 11 

claim to the lands in dispute (see Pat. and Sept. 29, he was knighted, and was 

Rolls, 20 Ed. 4, pt. ii. p. 218), and how probably the Sir Boger Eingeston stated to 

trivial his misconduct was deemed, or how have been knighted by Edward 4 on the 

great his influence was at Court, is apparent field of Grafton beside Tewkesbury (May ^, 

from the fact that he was again on the 1471) (W. C. Metcalfe, * Book of Knights,* 



INTRODUCTION Ixiii 

issued fresh letters of summons with which he was duly served, but 
which he treated with contempt, ' contynuing stille in his said murdres, 
manslaughter, roberies, extorcions, oppressions & raunsons, en- 
prisonementz there of your liegemen, servauntez, & tenauntez of 
your said suppliant, worse and in more orrible wise than it were in 
land of war.' This, being the plaintiff's version of his conduct, is 
perhaps somewhat highly coloured, but it moved the Council to take 
the step which the Act of 1453 authorised after a first contempt. A 
writ of proclamation was duly issued to the sheriff of Salop * to make 
open proclamacion withynne the said counte that the said Roger 
shuld appere affore your highnesse and the lordes of your Counseille 
at the quinzisme of Michaelmas last past, on his allegeaunce (and to 
kepe the pease in themeane time upon his ligeance).' The proclama- 
tions are stated to have been duly made throughout the county. The 
date of the issue of the writ of proclamation does not appear, but it 
would seem that it was before Long Vacation ; for the Council in the 
Star Chamber kept, as has been seen, the legal terms. This probably 
explains the reason why the defendant was not called upon, in 
accordance with the provisions of the Act of 1453, to appear before 
the Council or the Chancellor within a month of the last proclamation. 
In the meanwhile Kynaston, so far from keeping the peace, ' con- 
tynued . . . wors than before,' and on August 28, 1467, a commis- 
sion issued to John Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, Sir William Herbert 
and the Sheriff of Salop * to arrest Roger Kynaston, late of Walford, 
CO. Salop, Esquire, alias of Knokyn in the Marches of Wales, and 
bring him before the King in Council.' ' Kynaston thereupon fled 
to * the high parties of Wales called Powys land and there kept hym 
in mounteynes, mareys and wodes, as an outlawe, associate with mony 
other of mysruled people like outlawes, and yit dothe.' This was a 
proceeding for which the Act did not expressly provide, it being 

p. 3), in which battle he doubtless fought, a commissioner of subsidy for Salop in 

for his name appears on the commission the same year (ib. p. 396), a commissioner 

of array issued by Edward 4 on the previous of array on May 1, 1484, to make prepara- 

April 26 (Pat. Bolls, 11 Ed. 4, pt. i. tions for repelling invasion by Henry, Earl 

p. 284). On Feb. 8, 1473, he petitioned of Richmond (Henry 7) (ib. p. 401), and 

Edward 4 for the confirmation of the grants his fidelity was rewarded by a fresh grant 

of the constableship and captainship of of the constableship of Hardlagh (Dec. 15, 

the Castle of Hardlaugh (Harlech) and the 1483, ib. p. 408), of an annuity of 40 marks, 

Sheriffwick of Merionethshire, pleading his and the renewal of the offices of sheriff and 

true and faithful service to the King and his escheator of Merionethshire (March 5 and 8, 

father. His petition was granted (Bot. 1484, ib. p. 441). He was also nominated 

Pari. vi. 46, b). He was trusted by by Bic. 3 upon the commission of the peaee 

Bichard 3, being commissioned by him on for Salop (June 26 and Dec. 5, 1483, ib. 

Dec. 10, 1483, to inquire into the circum- p. 570). He died in 1496 (Harl. Soc. xxviii. ii. 

stances of the rising of the previous October p. 295) (Visitation of Shjropshire). 

(Pat. Bolls, 1 Bic. 3, pt. ii. p. 392). He was ' Pat. Boll, 7 Ed. 4, pt. i. m. 13, d. 

d 



Ixiv COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

assumed by it that an offender would, in case he had shown contempt 
for the Writ of Proclamation, submit to a fine by the two chief jus- 
tices. The petitioner, therefore, asked the King to issue a privy seal 
to the commissioners * commaundyng them most straightly to execute 
the said commission,' which suggests that they sympathised with the 
offender. But as their authority would be confined to the county of 
Salop, he asks the issue of writs of proclamation to the justices of the 
peace and other officers as well of Salop as of the counties of Flint, 
Hereford, and Chester, ordering them to arrest the defendant. These 
writs were on Nov. 12, 1467, ordered by the Council sitting in the 
Star Chamber to issue. The conclusion is that the Act of 1458 
established, and perhaps followed, precedents for the action of the 
Council towards notable disturbers of the peace which were main- 
tained after the Act itself had expired. 

Henry 7 ascended the throne anxious to maintain the Lancas- 
trian tradition of parliamentary government. A scrutiny of the 
statutes passed by him will shew that for the most part they were 
not novel in kind, but an endeavour to enforce existing laws. His 
predilection for an adherence to constitutional forms was doubtless 
due to the teaching of Fortescue, the author of two text-books for 
Lancastrian statesmen, and the influence of Archbishop Morton, 
during whose lifetime he summoned frequent parliaments. Accord- 
ingly, in the statute ' Pro Camera Stellata,' the main thought was 
to legalise a jurisdiction which, under Edward 4, was irregularly 
exercised, but which had a statutory pedigree derived from the Act of 
1453.^ That Act had expired on May 1, 1461, two months after Edward 
had ascended the throne. The new measure was an improvement upon 
it in two ways. In the first place, it largely increased the number 
of offences with which the Court was thenceforth by consent of Parlia- 
ment competent to deal. In the second place, by giving a statutory 
sanction to the issue of Writs of Subpoena or Privy Seal, it put an 
end, for a long while to come, to those continual bickerings between 
the Sovereign and the House of Commons which marked the meet- 
ings of so many Parliaments under Bichard 2 and his two successors. 
Thirdly, it extended to all cases covered, at least, by the statutory 
jurisdiction, the ancient but controverted and in part abandoned 

» * Truely I could rather, if I knew not of addressing Proces and sheweth our 

the Star Chamber to haue been ever a verey Courte in all Congruence and Cometh 

Court, haue thought it to haue beene erected verey neare a verey Court in forme of 

by this statute of 31 Hen. 6 A it con- Lawe.' W. Mill in B. M. Hargr. MS. 216, 

cureth soe even with our jurisdiccion now f. 118, d. 
both in the Nature of offences and nractice 



INTRODUCTION Ixv 

practice of the Council of examining defendants upon oath. So far as 
the statesmen of the day appear to have intended, they were obtain- 
ing fresh parliamentary powers to deal with the disorders which were 
then rendering the task of government diflScult. The tacit enlargement 
of the powers of the Court undoubtedly arose from the accredited 
belief that it inherited the undefined powers of the Council to deal 
with new emergencies. To this may be added the natural tendency 
to the extension of jurisdiction common to all courts and the political 
advantages which the control of a powerful judicial tribunal was 
eventually seen to confer upon the Sovereign. 

By way of illustration of the conservative character of the Act and 
of the advantage gained through it to the executive government, we 
may take the offences specified by it as appertaining to the jurisdic- 
tion of the Court. Unlawful maintenance was no offence then first 
. arbitrarily created. Coke, indeed, declares that 'maintenance is 
malum in se,' and against the common law,^ and the cc. xxv-xxviii.^ 
of the statute of Westminster the First were enacted against specific 
forms of it as early as 1275. During the reigns of Edward 8 and 
Bichard 2 statute followed statute for its suppression. A principal 
difficulty in enforcing these was, as we learn from a statute of 1330,' 
that where great men were concerned jurors of inquests dared not 
give their verdicts. It is evident that the assignment by that Act 
and an Act of 1346^ of cases of maintenance to the Justices of Assize 
did little to correct the practice. Similarly with the giving of liveries, 
a statutory offence closely connected with maintenance. The first 
Act against these, passed in 1377,* recites that liveries are given with 
the * covenant and assurance that every of them shall maintain other 
in all quarrels, be they reasonable or unreasonable, to the great 
mischief and oppression of the people.' The Act then provides that 
'henceforth no such livery be given to any man for maintenance 
of quarrels or other confederacies upon pain of imprisonment and 
grievous forfeiture to the King, and the Justices of Assize shall 
diligently inquire of all them that gather them together in fraternities 
by such livery to do maintenance.' Supplementary statutes against 
liveries passed in 1392,^ 1396,^ 1406,^ and 1468® prove how little 
effective the law was. Could it be otherwise when the offence 
was tried before a country jury in sympathy with the practice, from 
which they derived the advantage of the protection of a powerful 

> 2 Inst. 212. * 20 Ed. 3, o. 6 (1346). ' 20 Bio. 2, c. 2. 

« 8 Ed. 1 (1275) » 1 Rio. 2, c. 7. * 7 Hen. 4, c. 14. 

» 4 Ed. 3, 0. 11 (1330). • 16 Rio. 2, c. 4. • 8 Ed. 4, o. 2. 

d2 



Ixvi COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

lord,^ and with the oflfender their patron and neighbour ? How 
difficult it was to uproot the system is evident from the fact that the 
year of the Act * Pro Camera Stellata ' saw passed * an Acte agaynst 
retayning any of the Kynge's tennantes/*^ and in 1504 an Act pre- 
scribing new penalties was passed *De Retentionibus illicitis.'^ 

Akin to maintenance, with which it was sometimes coupled/ was 
* embraciaries of his subgettes,* by which is generally understood the 
corruption of jurors by promises, entreaties, money, entertainments, 
and the like.'* With this offence the Act of 1487 joins *ontrue 
demeanyges of Shrevys in makyng of panelles and other ontrew 
retournes ' and * takyng of money by jurryes.' It is obvious that 
practices which corrupted the jury system at the very root could only 
i be effectually dealt with by the executive, which the Star Chamber 
at this time practically was,*^ and the numerous statutes which had 
failed to repress these malpractices confirm this presumption. 

As the following cases shew, even in the days of Henry 7 the 
Court did not confine itself within the offences enumerated by the 
statute of 1487. The first case undoubtedly heard after that Act, 
though begim before, the case of the Prior of Bath against the Abbot 
of St. Augustine's, Canterbury (pp. 20-34), might be called an action 
of detinue and an action for an account ; the three cases of Vale r. 
Broke, Donyngton r. Broke, and Smyth r. Broke (pp. 38-45) are 
actions for defamation; Madeley v. Fitzherbert (pp. 54-69) is an 
action for a wrongful impounding, an essentially common law action ; 
the Lead Miners of Yorkshire v. the Merchants of York (pp. 69-71), 
which was very likely remitted to the common law courts, was an 
allegation of a statutory offence ; Hewyt and others and the Mayor &c. 
of Exeter against the Mayor &c. of London (pp. 71-95) complain of 
a violation of royal charters ; Goryng v. the Earl of Northumberland 
(pp. 95-105) is a case of alleged illegal detention or false imprison- 
ment ; so is Jones v. Lychfeld (pp. 275-278) and Carter v. the Abbot 

* That the immediate dependants of the * 19 Hen. 7, c. 13, De Biotis reprimendis 
Court were foremost in these practices (1504). ' And if the seid riotte route or 
appears from the number of statutes unlawefuU assemble be not found by the 
specifically directed against them, as 1 Ed. seid Jurry, by reason of any mayntenauncez 
8, St. 2, 0. 14 (1327) ; 20 Ed. 3, c. 4 (1346) ; or embracery of the seid Jurrours ' Ac. 

1 Rio. 2, c. 4 (1377); and 7 Ric. 2, c. 15 » Blackstone,' Commentaries '(ed. 1709), 

(1383). Similarly, champerty, a form of bk. iv. c. 10, § 18. See also W. Lambard, 

maintenance, was expressly forbidden to * Archeion ' (1635), 200, and T. Heame, 

the King's officers by the statute of West- ' Curious Discourses * (ed. 1771), ii. 289. 

minster the First, c. 25 (1275). ' Camera Stellata.* 

« 3 Hen. 7, c. 12 (1487). • For a further discussion of this class 

• 19 Hen. 7, c. 14. See further on this of offence see re The Attorney-General v. 
subject re the Abbot of Eynesham v. Hare- Parre and others, pp. cxxzii-cxxxiv, infra, 
court, p. 139 n. 7, infra. 



INTRODUCTION Ixvii 

of Malmesbury (pp. 118-129), though here, as in other instances, 
rout, or riot, is alleged ; Kebell v. Vernon (pp. 130-137) is forcible 
abduction, a statutory offence, in which, however, riot or rout was 
also involved ; Halle r. Essexe (pp. 168-178) is a case of disseisin, 
involving also the offence which Hudson calls 'embezzling of evi- 
dences.'^ The case of Whyte v. the Mayor &c. of Gloucester 
(pp. 225-226) is a complaint of illegal tolls, contrary to an Act of 
Parliament. Here, however, there was some statutory colour for the 
Court's interference, though it was doubtless founded, in the minds 
of the judges themselves, upon the ancient prerogative over highways 
and waterways. Hence Hudson remarks : * The opening of passages 
and maintenance of bridges hath been here enjoined ; so was it in the 
town of Kingston-upon-Hull, 21 Eliz.' ^ Butlond and others r. Austen 
and others (pp. 262-271) was a complaint of a statutory offence. 
The case of the Master and Brethren of All Saints, Maidstone, v. 
Kempe (pp. 271-274) is an action of wrongful presentation and 

. trespass. The only possible inference seems to be that in these cases 
the Court conceived itself as armed with the indeterminate jurisdiction 

! of the Council. 

There is one procedure in use in the Star Chamber animadverted 
upon by both Mill and Hudson, of which no example occurs among 
these documents. It was known by the name of * the proceeding by 
Ore tenus.' ^ Its first step was the apprehension of the defendant by 
a pursuivant, or messenger, without any information laid against him. 
This was certainly not to be justified by the Act *Pro Camera 
Stellata,* which only authorised the issue of process * uppon bill or 
informacion put to the seid Chancellor, for the Kyng or any other, 
ageyn eny person for eny misbehavyng afore rehersed.' It was 
possibly on this account that the rule was ' strictly held that they 
must proceed upon confession,' ^ whereas, as has been seen, the Act, 
which gave power to examine, was interpreted to authorise examination 
by interrogatories upon oath. In 'ore tenus' he was examined 
* without oath or any compulsory means concerning the fact. If he 
shall deny the accusation, then cannot the court proceed against 
him ore tenus.' This is the kind of power that would naturally be, 
and was in fact, exercised by the executive. Both Mill and Hudson 
declare that in the seventeenth century it was employed to 'a 

* * The embezzling of evidences by slight 34 Eliz.' * Of the Court of Star Chamber/ 

or covin is here punishable ; so was it p. 109. 

adjadged in Katcliff's case against Tudor, ^ * Of the Court of Star Chamber/ p. 109. 

and taking away of a bond of :£1,000, ' lb. p. 126. 

sentenced between Stephen and Spencer, * lb. p. 127. 



Ixviii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

dangerous excess.' ^ But the use of it, clearly independent of the 
Act, points to its survival in the Court of the Star Chamber from the 
ancient practice of the Council. 

Until the number and character of the cases heard before the 
Council prior to the Act of 1487 have been definitely ascertained, it 
would be premature to assert that the pubUc up to that time generally 
had recourse to the Common Law Courts, which they thenceforth 
deserted in favour of a tribunal less costly, less hazardous, and more 
expeditious. One thing is quite clear, that the Act of 1487 did not 
overtly provide for cases of private litigation. It may also be that 
these cases of which we have no more than the plaint were remitted to 
the Common Law Courts. Wolsey, we are told by Hudson, sent causes 
arising within the Marches ^ to those courts.' ^ On the other hand 
it is doubtful whether where it had compelled the defendant to swear 
to his answer the Star Chamber would relax its seisin, for if the Eliza- 
bethan Coimcil was occasionally jealous of the Star Chamber,^ still more 
acute was the rivalry, as the history of the Court of Bequests has shewn, 
between the Prerogative Courts and the Courts of Common Law.'* 

The Court of the Star Chamber, following the established practice 
of the Council in the exercise of its judicial functions, sat in term 
time. Among the Acts of the Privy Council of 5 Hen. 6 (1426) is 
one * That out of terme tyme no thing be spedd in the counsail but 
suche thing as for the goode of the kyng and of his lande asketh 
necessarie and hastye spede and may not goodeley be abiden unto 
the terme tyme.' ^ The prayer in Culford v. Wotton is for the issue 
of letters of privy seal * charging him [the defendant] straithe by the 
same that he be and personally aper before your grace and your noble 
counsell at your palace of Westminster at a certain day this terme ' 
(p. 46). Observant, as always, of the procedure of the Council, the 
Court of Star Chamber, though habitually sitting in term time, 
occasionally departed from its rule. Hudson gives one example from 
the reign of Elizabeth and one from that of James 1, and remarks 
that * the Chancellor of England may determine cases in the court of 
Chancery in the vacation time as well as in the term.' ^ The practice 
had passed into controversy, it being alleged that sitting out of term 
time implied sitting at the King's pleasure, which ' manifesteth it 
to subsist rather by extraordinary sovereignty than ordinary course.' ^ 

There are some indications that in the reign of Henry 7 the 

' Hudson, p. 127. ^ Nicolas, * Proceedings and Ordinances ' 

* lb. p. 116. ^c, iii. 216. 

" See p. Ivi, supra. * * Of the Court of Star Chamber,' p. 5. 

* Selden Society (1898), pp. xzxvi-xlvi. lb. 



INTRODUCTION Ixix 

proceedings of the Court of Star Chamber were expeditious. In 
Culf ord V. Wotton (p. 47) the writ was made returnable on Feb. 9, and 
the hearing apparently fixed for the last day of the same month (1494). 
In Hewyt and others and the Mayor &c. of Exeter against the Mayor 
&c. of London, heard in 1500, the plaintiff asks for the dispatch of a 
serjeant-at-arms to enforce the immediate restitution of the goods 
detained from him ' orels to appere before your seid lordship to 
morowe yn the sterre chambre' (p. 72). That case, however, which 
involved a searching of records, dragged on for at least eighteen 
months. In Walterkyn r. Letice the riotous conduct complained of 
took place * vppon Tewsdaie last passed the xxiij^'* daie of this present 
moneth of Maii,' i.e. 1503 (p. 165). The indorsement is for hearing 
* die Martis proxime futuri,' i.e. within a week of the offence (p. 166). 
In the case of the Abbot and Bailiffs of Shrewsbury two privy 
seals were issued on or after April 22, 1509, and served on the 
parties on May 26, 1509 (p. 190). Some time after Jime 24, 

1509, a document praying for an exemplification of a Star Chamber 
decree was sent up to London. The exemplification arrived and was 
read at Shrewsbury in public on July 21 following. On that same 
day a riot took place, on account of which one of the bailiffs of the 
town was served with a privy seal on July 24 (p. 204), but the 
second of the two cases between the abbot and bailiffs, which began 
in the second quarter of 1509, dragged on till the last quarter of 

1510, so far as the documents here published shew, though this delay 
may have been partly due to the illness and death of Robert Bydon, 
the clerk of the Council (see p. 196, n. 2). In the case of the Fur- 
nivall's Inn rioters the later riot complained of occurred on May 6, 
1507, and the witnesses were interrogated, as the indorsements (p. 
245 and p. 250) shew, on May 16. Only in the case of Kebell 
V. Vernon the indorsements run from June 17, 1502 (p. 134), to 
Nov. 8, 1504 (p. 137), and in this case the delay perhaps arose from a 
suspense of the proceedings pending the trial of an action at law 
which we know from other sources to have taken place. 

The earliest mention of the Star Chamber eo nmnine to be found 
in these documents is in the case of Hewyt and others v. the 
Mayor &c. of London. The bill, filed in 1500, petitions that the 
defendant may be ordered to appear before the Lord Keeper * yn the 
sterre chambre ' (p. 72). This is about four years earlier than the 
first statutory mention of the Court as ' the Lordis of the Kynges 
honorable Counceill in the Sterre Chamber at Westminster ' (19 Hen. 7, 
c. 18). The curious statement called a * bill ' (p. 184), apparently 



Ixx COURT OF TIIE STAR CHAMBER 

drawn up by Margaret Kebell herself, was delivered to the defendant's 
attorney * in the sterre chambre ' by the Lord Chancellor (p. 184). 
This was in 1502. That the defendant may be summoned to appear 
* before your highnes and your most honorable Counseill in the Sterre 
Ghambre at Westmenster ' is the prayer of the Abbot of Eynesham 
(p. 151). This was in 1508, and to the same year belongs the phrase 
*the Kynges most honorable Councell in his Starre Chamber,' to 
which the writs of subpoena issued against William Tytte and others 
were returnable (p. 162). These phrases recur in the petition of the 
Mayor &c. of Gloucester in 1504 (p. 209), and in that of Whyte 
against the same corporation in 1505 (p. 225). The writ of Dedimus 
Potestatem of Dec. 4, 1504, recites * coram dominis de consiUo nostro 
in camera stellata apud Westmonasterium ' (p. 217). ' In the Kynges 
Starr Chamber ' is the phrase in 1509 in the Abbot of Shrewsbury's 
case (p. 189), and in the same case in 1510 ' in the Sterre Chambre ' 
simply (p. 200). In Grocjm and others r. Kempe the plaintiff prays 
for the appearance of the defendant 'before your good grace and 
other of your most honarable Councell in the Stere Chaumbre at 
Westminster* (p. 278). From first to last of these instances it 
will be seen that Hudson's phrase, which was in common use in his 
day, * the Court of Star Chamber,' never appears. That phrase 
encouraged the idea that the Court was of statutory origin, if, indeed, 
it did not suggest it. But in the time of Henry 7 it is evident that 
in the eyes of the litigants and their legal advisers this was a Court 
of the King and Council sitting in their accustomed place of meeting. 
The conclusions derived from this review of the history and prac- 
tice of the Court of Star Chamber may be briefly summarised as 
follows : — 

1. The Court did not conceive itself as of statutory origin, nor its 
practice as limited by the statute * Fro Camera Stellata,' either in 
respect to its (a) composition or (b) jurisdiction. 

2. The forms used by the Court prove that it conceived itself as a 
Court of the King's Council. 

8. The sitting of the King's justices as assessors was not a novelty 
introduced by the statute * Pro Camera Stellata,' but was a continu- 
ance of the practice of the King's Council sitting judicially in the Star 
Chamber. 

4. The Court of Star Chamber was further reinforced in legal 
competence by the swearing in as judges of the Court of experts who 
thenceforth ranked as Consiliarii, though not members of the Privy 
Council. 



INTRODUCTION Ixxi 

5. The Privy Council still affected and occasionally exercised a 
concurrent jurisdiction. 

6. This concurrent jurisdiction differed from the jurisdiction of the 
King's Council in the Star Chamber (a) in the absence of the King's 
justices and other legal experts (Jurisconsulti) as assessors and judges 
respectively, (b) In the relinquishment of the ancient practice of 
examining defendants and witnesses upon oath, which, having been 
long a grievance of the Commons, was disused by the Council, except 
in certain cases, in 1351 and after the statute ' Pro Camera Stellata ' 
taken to be confined to the Star Chamber, but to be coextensive with 
its jurisdiction, express or constructive. Further, this concurrent 
jurisdiction seems not to have been generally exercised in private 
suits, and to have passed into increasing desuetude as the Privy 
Council became absorbed in pohtics. 

7. In the reign of Henry 7, so far as appears from the documents 
here pubUshed, the litigants accepted the Star Chamber's view of its 
origin, assumed it to be the King's Council, and, notwithstanding the 
Act 'Pro Camera Stellata,' to be invested with the indeterminate 
jurisdiction traditionally possessed by that body, generally conceived 
of as supplementary to the common and statute law. 

8. The primary object of the Act * Pro Camera Stellata ' was to 
obtain a statutory sanction for these powers. Henry 7 had before 
him the Lancastrian precedent of the expired Act of 1453. The 
enumeration of offences by the Act of 1487 was not by way of Umita- 
tion, but in order to give a statutory expansion to the powers conceded 
by Parliament in the earUer Act. 

9. This construction of the Act * Pro Camera Stellata,' while it 
does not altogether clear up some of its obscurities, furnishes an 
explanation of the variations from its provisions practised both by the 
litigants before it and by the Court itself. 



Ixxii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



PART n 

Notes on the Gases 

1. Mayor &c. of Exeter v, Stoden and others. — 2. Tayllour v. Att Well. — 
8. Prior of Bath v. Ahbot of St. Augustine's, Canterbury.— 4. Powe v. 
Newman. — 5. Straunge v. Eenaston.— 6. Abbot of Eynesham v. Sir Robert 
Hareoourt.— 7. Abbot of Byland v. Warooppe. — 8. Principal &c. of Fumivall's 
Inn V. Johnson and others. — 9. Kebell v. Vernon. — 10. Goryng r. Earl of 
Northumberland. — 11. Madeley v. Fitzherbert. — 12. Grocyn v. Kempe. — 
18. Carter r. Abbot of Malmesbury.— 14. Culford y.Wotton.— 16. Walterkyn 
V. Letioe. — 16. Vale v. Broke, Donyngton v. Broke, Smyth v. Broke.— 17. 
Hobart, A. G., v. Parre and others. — 18. Tapton v, Colsyll. — 19. Pynson 
and others v. Squyer and others. — 20. The Abbot t\ the Bailiffs of Shrews- 
bury. — 21. Hewyt and others and Mayor &c. of Exeter v. Mayor &o. of 
London. — 22. Couper v. Gervaux. — 28. Whyte v. Mayor &c. of Gloucester. — 
24. Lead Miners of Yorkshire v. Merchants of York. — 26. Butlond and 
others v. Austen and others. 

The first two cases printed here undoubtedly never came before the 
statutory Court of the Star Chamber, among the records of which 
other*. ^j^^y j^^^^ ^^^^ preserved. The case of the Mayor &c. of Exeter 
against Stoden (pp. 1-6) is clearly a case heard by King Edward 4 
in Council in 1477, although it has been mixed up with the papers 
belonging to the reign of Henry 8. The address is to the King, and 
the concluding prayer of the plaint to the King and the lords of his 
Council. The complaint alleges a riot, which was not a mere form of 
pleading, but which we know to have actually occurred. The history 
of this quarrel between the gild and the corporation of Exeter is to 
be found in Toulmin Smith's * Early English Gilds,' ^ where the judge- 
ment in this case is set out. The judgement was in the nature of 
a compromise. The scrutiny which the master and wardens of the gild 
claimed to exercise over the whole city, and which the complainants 
allege infringed certain ecclesiastical liberties, was limited, but in 
somewhat ambiguous language. This probably gave rise to the sub- 
sequent disputes. The judgement upon this point ran : * The saide 
Master, Wardens, and theire successors shall make no suche ordy- 

1 Early English Text Society, xii. (1S70), pp. 302-312. 



Mayor &o. 
of Exeter *. 
Stoden and 



INTRODUCTION Ixxiii 

naunces, by force of the saide wordes, that shalbe prejudicial! or dero- 
gatyve to the lyberties, franchasies, right and laufull customes of the 
bisshop, Deane and chapter, Mayer, bayliffs and communalte, nor to 
any of their successors' (ib. p. 805). Searches were similarly limited 
(ib. p. 307). The disputes continued imtil in 1482 the charter of 1466 
was annulled (ib. p. 311 ; see Rot. Pari. vi. 219, 220). The gild, never- 
theless, continued until 1826 (ib. p. 299 ; Freeman, * Exeter,' p. 231). 

The companion case of Tayllour v. Att Well (pp. 6-15) is sorted Tayuour i 
among the Star Chamber Records of Henry 7, but internal evidence 
proves it to belong to the reign of Edward 4, and to be, in fact, also 
a case before the King's Council. The grounds for arriving at this 
conclusion are (1) that a bill purporting to be foimd * before William 
Huddesfeld your attorney' is the subject of the plaint. Huddes- 
feld was Attorney-General to Edward 4, and was displaced by 
Richard 3 on Aug. 1, 1483, while the Attorney-General nominated 
by Henry 7 on his accession was William Hody.^ The year of the 
indorsement, * xxviij Nov. anno regni regis xxij,' is, therefore, 1482. 
(2) The gravamen of the forged bill was concealment of a seizure 
of contraband on * the x*^ day of Auguste the yer of your most noble 
reyne xxj.' Now if the King had been Henry 7, this would be 
1506, whereas Huddesfeld, before whom the alleged bill was supposed 
to have been found, had died in 1499. Colshill, one of the jury, who 
had on that hypothesis found it after 1506, had died in 1495, and 
John Kelly, another of them, in 1486. (3) The signature * Lang- 
port' is that of Richard Langport, clerk of the Council, whose will 
was proved in 1490. 

The case throws a sidelight upon the struggle of political parties 
at Exeter during the reign of Edward 4. In my introduction to 
* Select Cases in the Court of Requests,'^ I have sketched the conflict 
between the democratic and the oligarchical parties for the control 
of the City gilds and of the City government. John Att Well, who 
figures as a defendant in this case, being a member of the oli- 
garchical party, was elected mayor for the fifth time in 1496. Robert 
Bonyfaunt, a deputy of the plaintiff Tayllour, and his brother, John 
Bonyfaunt, who does not figure in the Star Chamber case, belonged 
to the popular party.^ Tayllour probably belonged to the same party, 
for it appears that Tayllour was a trade name ; * and, as we see in this 

' E. Fobs, ' Judges of England,' v. 14. quests (Selden Soc. 1898), pp. 4, 6. 
* Selden Soc. (1898), pp. Ixxiii. * Campbell, * Materials for Hist, of 

' See Petition of the Mayor and Citizens Henry 7,' ii. 454. 
of Exeter, Select Pleas in the Court of Be- 



Ixxiv COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

volume, the tailors' gild long defied the control of the corporation. 
Moreover, it is certain that Tayllour was a Yorkist, the party supported 
by men of democratic sympathies. 

The starting-point of this case is perhaps to be found in the Rolls 
of Parliament for 1478. In that year the Commons preferred a 
complaint that ' oon John Tayllour, callyng hym Merchaunt of the 
said Cite of Exetur, by vertue of vrij dyvers fegned enformations made 
in your Escheker, hath condempned the said John Atwyll, duryng this 
present Parlement, by the defaute of aunswere of the said John, in 
eightscore li., the same John dayly attendyng uppon the same Parlia- 
ment and not havyng knowelege of the said condempnations.' ^ Atwyll 
was at this time representing Exeter in Parliament, and the Commons 
prayed arrest of process by issue of Supersedeas on the ground that 
the proceedings against him were a breach of privilege. Their request 
was granted, the suspension of proceedings to continue till the end of 
that Parliament, i.e. some time in the first six months of 1478. What 
happened to John Att Well, or Atwyll, after that date we do not precisely 
know ; but since he was afterwards frequently Mayor of Exeter, it may 
be inferred that the proceedings were more or Ifess ineffective. The 
manoeuvres imputed to him and his brother Philip, which led to the case 
before the Council here published, were probably by way of retaliation. 

It appears that on November 12, 1481, a commission had issued 
out of the Exchequer to * William Huddesfeld (Edward 4's Attorney- 
General), John Speke, esquire, John Hays, gentleman, John Atwyll, 
merchant, and John Benet, gentleman,' to inquire into concealments of 
customs and subsidies (see p. 8, n. 8, infra). According to the plaintiff, 
two brothers, John and Philip Att Well, forged a * bill' alleged to have 
been found by a jury of the citizens of Exeter against John Tayllour, 
customer of the ports of Exeter and Dartmouth. The gravamen of 
the bill was that Tayllour's clerk and deputy, Robert Bonyfaunt, 
having on August 10, 1481, seized certain canvas and sailcloth to the 
value of £146 13«. 4d. at Topsham, Devon, Tayllour concealed the 
seizure and appropriated the goods, half of which, as we know from 
the conditions of the grant of his oflSce (p. 6, n. 2), should have gone 
to the Crown. This * bill ' was then delivered by John Att WeU, the 
commissioner, to the Attorney-General, with a view to a prosecution 
of the alleged fraud in the Exchequer. The plaintiff appears to have 
received early notice of the trick he alleges to have been played, and 
to have obtained a copy of the ' bill * from the Exchequer with the 

* Bot Pari. vi. 191, b, where the year is * Parliaments and Councils of England ' 
called 1477, i.e. O.S. The Parliament met (1839), p. 193. 
January 16. 1478 (N.S.). See C. H. Parry, 



INTRODUCTION Ixxv 

names of the panel. Armed with this document he visited each 
juryman, and one and all denied that they had ever found such a 
bill. At the plaintiffs instance they drew up a * lettre testimonyall ' 
with their seals, the identity of which was vouched for by the seals of 
Bishop Courtney and of the mayor of Exeter, repudiating the pretended 
* bill.* The * lettre testimonyall ' was laid before the King, no doubt 
sitting in Council in exercise of his judicial prerogative. The King 
(Edward 4) remitted the * lettre testimonyall' to the Mayor and 
Bailiffs of Exeter for their verification, with orders that, in the event 
of its proving genuine, John and Philip Att Well should be arrested 
and imprisoned. Huddesfeld, the Attorney- General, happening to 
be at the time in Exeter, the King's orders were communicated to 
him, and with his sanction John Att Well was arrested and confined 
in the castle. Phihp escaped search. The plaintiff, in his petition, 
states that John * came out of prison ' and went home, which suggests 
that he was powerfully befriended in Exeter. In his replication he 
alleges that John * breke oute of warde.' But it is evident, from the 
assurance with which the gaoler endeavoured to pacify the mayor 
when, at the instance of the plaintiff, he became concerned as to the 
prisoner's safety, that his escape was connived at. However this 
may be, both the defendants deny the charge that they either forged 
or altered a bill against the plaintiff, and both maintain the genuine- 
ness of the bill impeached. John denies that he broke gaol, a plea 
which seems to have had some substance to support it ; and Philip 
asserts that, so far from keeping out of the way, he rode off to the 
King and obtained a discharge for both himself and his brother. It 
is difl&cult to know where the truth lies, but we know from the 
Patent Eolls that Tayllour retained his post till the overthrow of the 
Yorkist party at Bosworth Field in 1485. On the other hand John 
Att Well became Mayor of Exeter in 1483, and twice at later dates. 
This is perhaps not altogether inconsistent with the truth of the 
plaintiff's statement ; for forgery, though a misdemeanour at common 
law, was not regarded as an offence of high gravity,^ and political faction 
may have stifled public conscience. 

The subsequent fortunes of John Tayllour are partly disclosed by 
an Act of Attainder passed in 1491.^ This Act recites at length the 
contents of a treasonable letter received by one * John Hayes, late 
of Tiberton in the Countie of Devonshire, gentilman.' It was * writen 
at Eoan in Normandy, by your old accoyntaunce John Taillour the 

* J. F. Stephen, * Hist, of Criminal ^ 7 Hen. 7, c. 22. Convictio Johannis 

Law/ iii. 180. Hayes, Rot. Pari. vi. 454. 



Ixxvi COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

elder.' The letter was received by Hayes at Winchester on Novem- 
ber 26, 1490, at the hands of one * William Warde of Topisham.' 
Hayes was arrested on suspicion and brought before the Council. He 
then revealed the letter. His name and style and his association with 
* John Atte Will ' and with the village of Topsham suflSciently identify 
him with the commissioner of 1481. He had been a servant of George, 
Duke of Clarence,^ who had been put to death on February 18, 1478. 
John Tayllour had also been a servant of Clarence, and had been 
mentioned in the Act of Attainder passed against Clarence in 1478 as 
having been entrusted by his master with the duty of conveying 
Edward, Earl of Warwick, the duke's eldest son, into Ireland beyond 
the reach of Edward 4. Notwithstanding this, he was taken into 
the King's service and employed in oflSces of trust in connexion with 
the administration of the estates of Clarence's youthful heir. This 
and a number of other grants ^ sufficiently identify him with John 
Tayllour * the elder ' of 1491, who in 1482 had been known as John 
Tayllour the younger, merchant of Exeter,^ the Christian name of 
' John ' being presumably handed on from father to son, as in the case 
of the three John Goryngs.^ It is not surprising to find that John 
Tayllour, having been evicted from his offices after Bosworth,* was 
become 'a rebell & traitour, being in Normandy in the service of 
your [Henry 7*s] auncien enemye of Fraunce.' ^ He was organising 
a conspiracy in favour of Warwick, then a close prisoner in the Tower 
of London. His correspondent John Hayes had been treated by 
Edward 4 in the same generous spirit as had Tayllour himself. 
Hayes had received on November 21, 1478, a grant for life of the office 
of receiver of the lordship and manor of Tyverton and all other lord- 
ships, manors, and lands in the counties of Cornwall, Devon, Somerset;, 
Dorset, Wilts, and Southampton forfeited by the duke, and of the 
office of the custody of the castle or manor of Tyverton &c.* On 
February 11, 1480, he obtained further similar grants during the 
minority of the Earl of Warwick.® Of these grants the most impor- 
tant were confirmed by Richard 3.^ He was, therefore, naturally well 
affected to the cause of Warwick. So much confidence was reposed in 
him by Tayllour that he was asked in the letter to concert with others 
the place of landing for a French army of invasion promised in support 

' 7 Hen. 7, c. 22. Convictio Johannis 18 Ed. 4, pt. ii. m. 19, p. 128 ; ib. 18 Ed. 4, 

Hayes, Kot. Pari. vi. 454. January 20, 1479, p. 134. 

- See p. 6, n. 2, infra. • ib. 19 Ed. 4, m. 7, p. 176. Cp. February 

> Oal. of Pat. Rolls, 21 Edw. 4, pt. i. Fe- 13, 1482, 21 Ed. 4, m. 3, p. 261 ; February 

bruary 10, 1482, p. 262. 15, 1483, 22 Ed. 4, m. 16, p. 336. 

* See p. 95, n. 2, infra. ' Cal. of Pat. Rolls, February 80 (sic), 

• November 21, 1478, Cal. of Pat. Rolls. 1484. 1 Ric. 3, pt. iv. p. 433. 



INTRODUCTION Ixxvii 

of Warwick's claim. To do this the better, he was invited to go to 
France, * or elUs send Maister John Atte Will whom ye well trust and y 
also if ys (? ye) aunswere for him/ This expression seems to indicate 
that Att Well was at this time trimming to the Yorkists, as his nomi- 
nation by Eichard 3 on July 15, 1484, upon a commission to inquire 
into treasons &c. committed by James Newenham and others perhaps 
indicates/ However this may be, Tayllour evidently harboured dis- 
trust of his ancient enemy, whose interest in the house of Clarence is 
not apparent. Hayes was Ukewise exhorted to bring Isabel, Duchess 
of Clarence, Warwick's mother, into communication with the King of 
France for the furtherance of the plot. The intermediary between 
Tayllour and Hayes was one * William Warde of Topisham,' perhaps 
the ' yeoman of the counting-house of the household ' and custodian of 
the gatehouse of Westminster Palace under Edward 4.* Why Hayes 
should have taken part in the plot, except from the sentiment of 
party loyalty, it is not easy to explain, since he had hastened to make 
his peace with Henry 7. Within a month of Bosworth he had 
obtained from him a confirmation of the grants of Edward 4 and 
Eichard 3,' followed by fresh grants on December 6 and 10, 1485,^ 
and February 17, 1486,^^ May 31, 1486.^ From this it may be 
inferred that he was one of those who had deserted the cause of 
Eichard. The published materials of the reign of Henry 7 do not 
shew whether he was subsequently dispossessed of these grants ; but 
as the Act of Attainder describes him as * late of Tiverton,' it would 
seem that he was so. This would account for the trust reposed in 
him by the conspirators. Who revealed the compUcity of Hayes does 
not appear, possibly John Att Well, who became mayor of Exeter for 
the fourth time in 1492. The conspiracy never came to a head. Hayes 
was confined for misprision until he had made fine and ransom to 
the King, which, since most of his property was confiscated by the 
Act, was presumably for life.' John Tayllour disappears from history. 

Of three other cases which may be linked with a time anterior to ^^^j^ p^j^,. 
1487, one, the Prior of Bath against the Abbot of St. Augustine's, Ai^^ne's, 
Canterbury (p. 20), was originally brought before Eichard 3 in S^boto?.'^* 

■ He was mayor of Exeter at the time. * lb. 198, 211. 

Gal. of Pat. RoUs, 2 Bio. 3, pt. i. m. 11, d, ^ lb. 296. See also p. 309. 

p. 493. • lb. p. 445. 

« See p. 1, ib. January 15, 1476, 16 Ed. ' The proviso limiting his forfeitures to 

4, pt. ii. m. 26. grants by Henry 7, his mother, and Courtney, 

» W. Campbell, ' Materials,* Ac. i. 20, bishop of Exeter perhaps preserved to him 

189 ; September 20, 1485 ; November 30, the means for procuring his disoharce from 

1485. custody. ^ 



Ixxviii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Council ; a second, Parker v, the Duke of Suffolk (p. 15), perhaps 
came before Henry 7 in Council prior to the Act * Pro Camera 
Stellata' of 1487 ; a third, Straunge v. Kenaston (p. 274), can trace a 
sort of pedigree to the Council of Edward 4J 

The litigation between the prior of Bath and the mitred Abbot of 
St. Augustine's, Canterbury, appears to have been protracted during 
some five years, in the course of which the statutory organisation of 
the Star Chamber took place. It was begun in the reign of Richard 3, 
before the King's Council, some time prior to February 14, 1 Ric. 3 
(1484), which is the only date given throughout the case. But 
here a difficulty arises. According to the answer of the abbot, 
which took the form of a petition, in order, the prior suggests, to 
avoid the necessity of filing an affidavit, * of late a grevous sclaun- 
derouse vntrue fayned and surmysed bill of compleynt' had been 
brought before the Council by John Cauntlowe, Prior of Bath. 
According to Dugdale (* Monast.' ii. 260), * John Dunster occurs as prior 
in 1406. He died on February 6, 1412.' This is clearly not the 
prior who became Abbot of St. Augustine's, and who is represented in 
these documents as being the immediate predecessor of Prior Caunt- 
lowe. Dunster was a place-name, probably assumed on profession, 
as we have grounds in these papers for inferring to have been the 
case with Abbot John Dunster. Ail that Dugdale knows of John 
Cauntlowe's predecessor is that * Richard, prior of Bath, is stated to 
have been present at the baptism of Richard, son to George, duke of 
Clarence, at Tewkesbury, October 7, 1476.' He continues : * John 
Cantlowe was made prior in 1489.' It is obvious that there is time 
between 1476 and 1484, when the list of Abbot John Dunster's depre- 
dations was drawn up, for the tenure of the priory by him. On the 
authority of these documents, therefore, we may insert him after Prior 
' Richard.' Dugdale appears to have been ignorant as to the precise 
date at which John Dunster was elected Abbot of St. Augustine's, but 
as Abbot William Sellyng « died in 1480 (Dugd. i. 123), and the list of 
depredations is dated February 14, 1484, at which date Dunster is 
already abbot, it is probable that it was in 1480 or 1481. But the 
last bill against Abbot Dunster is expressly stated in his petition to have 
been filed by Prior Cauntlowe, and the document dated February 14, 
1484, cannot possibly have preceded it, being in the nature of 

' See pp. Izi-lziv, supra. Monuments ' (1631), p. 237. This is an 

* This is not William Selling, the Greek example of the confusion likely to arise 

scholar, twenty-two years Prior of Christ from the practice of adopting place-names 

Church, Canterbury, whose epitaph is on ordination and profession. This W. S. 

given by J. Weever, ' Ajicient Funerall died in 1494. 



INTRODUCTION Lxxix 

particulars. It follows, therefore, that Dugdale, who gives no 
authority for his statement, must be wrong in his date of 1489 as the 
year of Prior Cauntlowe's election, and that it must have been before 
1484, and probably on the resignation of Dunster in 1480 or 1481. 

The date, 1484, shows that the allegation of Abbot Dunster that 
Prior Cauntlowe's original petition, which has been lost, was addressed 
to the Council, is not to be taken as meaning the Council in the statutory 
Court of Star Chamber as formed by Henry 7. The case is, indeed, 
a link between the court of prerogative and the court of statute. 

In strict chronological order the document lettered * D ' should 
perhaps be placed first. It is obviously a fragment, being, so far as it 
goes, a translation into English of the curious Latin document * C 
' D ' is undated. The date of ' C ' is 1484. Probably ' D ' was written 
at the same time. Neither document is the original bill preferred 
before the Council by the prior. But it is not unlikely that * D * was 
an exhibit filed with the original and lost bill. Its Latin equivalent 
* C with its form of exordium, of which similar examples may be seen 
in Gibson's * Codex,' looks as though it were intended for the bishop,^ 
though, on the other hand, it was a common form of clerical deed-poll. 
As both are subsidiary documents I have printed them after the 
replication of the prior to which they refer. That document * A,' an 
answer in the form of a petition, is later than 1487 appears from its 
reference to the statutory constitution of the Star Chamber, since there 
is no other statute to which its contentions relate. 

A curious constitutional question, already adverted to, is raised in 
the pleadings. The first document of the suit recites that a * bill and 
compleynt hath bene and yet is pursuyd ayenst youre saide oratour 
before the lordes of youre moost honourable counsell ' by the Prior of 
Bath. On this the statute of 1368, 42 Ed. 3, c. 3, is cited, which 
expressly provided that accusers shall not be at liberty to summon 
persons before the Council by writ, but * that no man be put to answer 
without presentment before justices or matter of record or by due 
process and writ original according to the old law of the land.* The 
statute is recited to have been passed at the express instance of the 
Commons. It was not the first of its kind. A petition was addressed 
by the Commons to the Crown in 1347 that henceforth no persons * par 
suggestion ou certification d'ascunes Acusours volentrimement ' should 
be brought by writ (par Brief) before the King's Council and fined. 

' The cathedral priories were subject quet, * Henry 8 and the English Monas- 
to episcopal jurisdiction unless in enjoy- ieries ' (2nd ed. 1888), i. 36, n. 
ment of papal exemption. See F. A. Gas- 



IXXX COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

The King's answer was equivocal. Such things should not hence- 
forth be done against reason (contre reson).^ In 1351 the Commons 
strengthened their petition by an allusion to the 39th clause of 
Magna Carta, * que nul franc homme ne soit mys a respon(Jre de son 
franc tenement/ nor of any matter which touched life or limb, nor be 
fined or ransomed * par apposailles ' * before the King's Council or 
before his Ministers, but only by the accustomed law of the land 
(Bot. Pari. ii. 228, a). The objection urged was the practice, also 
used in ecclesiastical courts, of proving a case against a defendant by 
means of fishing interrogatories viva voce. The King's response 
granted the petition as to civil procedure, but reserved the prerogative 
in cases of crime &c. (see p. Ivi, supra). This reservation being 
unsatisfactory, the Commons in 1352 expressly founded their petition 
on the Great Charter,^ by which it was ordained * that no one shall be 
imprisoned, nor put out of his freehold, nor of his franchises, nor free 
customs unless it be by the law of the land.' The statute which 
followed, therefore, enacted that 'from henceforth none should be 
taken by petition or suggestion made to our lord the king or to his 
Council, unless it be by indictment or presentment of good and lawful 
people of the same neighbourhood where such deeds were done in due 
manner or by process made by writ original at the common law ; nor 
that none be ousted by his franchises, nor of his freeholds, unless he 
be duly brought into answer and forejudged of the same by the course 
of the law' (25 Ed. 3, st. 5, c. 4). But it is apparent that the 
King's Council could not resist the temptation to assert its authority 
whenever complainants came before it. The Commons, therefore, 
next endeavoured to discourage prosecutions by enjoining the exaction 
of surety ' to pursue their informations (a poursuire lours suggestions) 
(37 Ed. 3, c. 18, 1363). In the following year (1364) they added 
the condition that failure to prove his case should be visited on the 
prosecutor by damages to the accused and by fine and ransom to the 
King (38 Ed. 3, st. 1, c. 9). Nevertheless the mischief continued 
so rife that in 1368 the Commons complain that many are ruined and 
destroyed (anientiz & destruitz) by false accusers. The outcome 
of this was the statute to which the defendant in the Star Chamber 
now appealed. * It is assented and accorded, for the good govern- 

' This protest is not noticed by Pal- the English equivalent * apposal * means 

grave. It is Rot. Pari. ii. 168, a. • vivA voce examination.' See J. A. H. 

* Palgrave translates this (p. 36) ' in- Murray, • Eng. Diet.' s.v. 
formations.' But the word in use for ' Item, Gome y soit contenu en la Grande 

' information ' was ' suggestion.' The word Ghartre des Fraunchises d'Engleterre &o, 

does not appear in Kelham nor Littr^, but Rot. Pari. ii. 239, b. 



INTRODUCTION Ixxxi 

ance of the Commons, that no man be pat to answer without 
presentment before justices &c.' (42 Ed. 8, c. 3). 
' Palgrave ^ has sketched, and the Rolls of Parliament give in detail, 
the incessant attempts of the Commons during the reigns of Richard 2, 
; Henry 5, and Henry 6 to enforce statutory restraints upon the 
I judicial authority of the Council. It will be sufficient here to call 
attention to a petition put forward by them in 1421.^ It begins by 
reciting that divers statutes are in existence forbidding that any of 
the lieges * should be summoned to answer unless by writ original 
and due process according to the law of the land ; yet so it is that 
divers of the lieges of our sovereign lord are made to come before his 
Council and his Chancellor by letters of Privy Seal and writs sub pena 
against the provisions and ordinances aforesaid.' The Commons 
therefore prayed * that no such letters nor writs be granted thence- 
forth, and if any such letters or writs be granted and it may appear 
by the declaration of the plaintiff that his action is at the common 
law, that the defendant be admitted to take exception to the jurisdic- 
tion of the court and to say that the plaintiff has remedy sufficient 
for him at the common law in his case and that this exception be 
allowed to him and he be on this dismissed out of court.* The King 
returned an evasive answer and no statute followed. In 1426 the 
lords of the Council themselves passed an ordinance ' that all the Billes 
that comprehend matiers terminable atte the Common Lawe be re- 
mitted there to be determined.' ^ This ordinance was incorporated in 
a statute passed in 1463, chiefly to repress the excesses of the nobles, 
for putting down contempts to the King's writs. Where such con- 
tempt had taken place the Chancellor was empowered to summon the 
offenders before the Council ; but a proviso was added, * That no 
matter determinable by the law of this realm shall be by this Act 
determined in any other form than after the course of the same law 
in the King's Courts having the determination of the same law.' * 

In the second place, the abbot pleads in demurrer to the bill, that 
the statutory jurisdiction of the Court of Star Chamber, which he does 
not mention by name, founded upon riot and unlawful assembly, 
or was intended to be invoked in cases of * great and grevouse 
pouertee.' The first part of this demurrer we are destined to meet 
elsewhere in the case of Halle v. Essexe. If it relates to the statutory 
Court it is difficult to know upon what ground it rested except on a 

' Sir F. Palgrave» • Essay upon the * Rot. Pari. v. 407, b. 

Original Authority of the King's Council.' * 31 Hen. 6, c. 2. The Act was limited 

* Bot Pari. iv. 156, a. to Be?en years. 

e'4 



Ixxxii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

general impression that, as a matter of fact, the statutory Court was 
specially destined for the repression of acts of violence. The abbot 
uses the word * present ' parliament, as though the Houses were yet 
sitting, in which case his counsel may not have seen a copy of the 
Act. Coke (4 Inst. p. 63) summarises the objects of the statutory 
jurisdiction of the Star Chamber as including cases of * oppression 
and other exorbitant offences of great men, bribery, extortion, main- 
tenance, champerty, imbracery, forgery, perjury, disperses of false 
and dangerous rumours, news, and scandalous libelling, false and 
partial misdemeanours of sherifs and bailifs of liberties, frauds, deceits, 
great and horrible riots, routs and unlawfull assemblies, single 
combats, challenges, duels and other hainous and extraordinary 
offences and misdemeanours.' It maybe said that this catalogue was 
largely composed of later deductions from the Act of Henry 7, but 
' embraceries ' and * untrue demeanings of sheriffs ' are undoubtedly 
included nomination as within that statute, and are not necessarily 
accompanied by riots. It seems to follow that the demurrer was bad, 
and this the subsequent practice of the Star Chamber indicates was 
the judgement of the Court. 

The other half of this portion of the demurrer appears similarly 
to have been drawn upon a general impression formed upon an Act of 
which no copy had yet appeared. It recalls certain ordinances of 
Coimcil of the time of Henry 6 (see A, p. 21, n. 9) and also the 
* Acte to admytt such persons as are poore to sue in forma pauperis ' 
(11 Hen. 7, c. 12). This Act, however, passed in 1495, is un- 
doubtedly later. The Parliament which passed the Act for the Star 
Chamber met on November 9, 1487.* From the number and im- 
portance of the Acts passed by it, we may infer that it sat afteir 
Christmas. There is no record of the date of its dissolution. The 
next Parliament met on January 13, 1489.^ We may therefore infer 
that the date of the abbot's plea A is the early part of 1488, before 
the statutes of 1487 had appeared in print. 

The list of the acts of waste committed by the outgoing prior raises 
interesting points as to the agricultural economy of the religious 
houses at this period. I have been at the pains to transcribe in the 
notes the computus of 1540 in respect of each of the manors men- 
tioned as having been subjected to waste by the prior. Besides these 
there are some eleven other manors belonging to the house of which 
no mention in this connexion is made. It might be unsafe to con- 

> Campbell, ' Mat.' ii. 189. 

' Q. H. Parry, * Parliaments and (Councils of England * (1889), p. 196. 



INTRODUCTION Ixxxiii 

elude that these last were farmed by yearly tenants or lessees for 
terms. But the list of acts of waste, which in all cases represent a 
diminution of the number of live stock in the several manors, points 
to one of two things. Either the manors on which the waste occurred 
were actually farmed by the monks themselves, or the abbey let these 
estates on the antiquated land and stock lease system. Thorold 
Bogers states ^ that this system was ' generally ' abandoned about 
the beginning of the fifteenth century ; but that New College, Oxford, 
did ' not get out of the land and stock leasing till a considerable time 
beyond the middle of that century.' The *Firma Gregis' in the 
instance of the manor of North Stoke (p. 31, n. 39) and, presumably, 
the * Redditus Mobilium ' of South Stoke, Combe, Preston, and 
Corston (p. 30, nn. 85, 6, 7, 8), coupled with the allegations of this 
document, seem to indicate that the land and stock lease survived on the 
estates of Bath Abbey at this time and down to the Dissolution. If so, 
it follows either that the leases of stock were for short terms only, so 
that the prior was able to sell off some portion of it before entering 
into a new agreement, or that a number of leases chanced to fall in 
during his tenure of oflSce. Had the abbey been farming its own 
land, there would have been no occasion to distinguish between that 
part of the revenue which was derived from stock and that derived 
otherwise. 

Another interesting feature of monastic economy appears in the 
abbot's financial administration. The religious houses were the banks 
of the middle ages. It was forbidden by the canon law, alike to 
ecclesiastics and laymen, to lend money upon usury, that is, upon 
interest. The successive refinements of casuistry by which this pro- 
hibition, at first absolute, became gradually whittled away may be 
regarded either as indicative of the capacity of the Church to adapt 
itself to change of its environment, or as an instructive commentary 
on the doctrine of Papal infallibility. A way was found out of the 
diflSculty, even during the time, prior to the twelfth century, when the 
veto of the Church was most uncompromising. This was by the 
creation of rent charges, so commonly in use by ecclesiastical corpora- 
tions as to receive the name of census ecclesidsticus. The practice, 
indeed, at first conformed itself to the authorised doctrine. The 
most ancient type of rent charge and the ideal type in the view of 
the canonists was that by which the purchaser of the rent charge 
received the right to take the produce of a specified area of land. 
From this type were deduced certain characteristics essential to the 

' * Hist. Ag. and Prices/ i. 25. 



Ixxxiv COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

canonical legitimacy of transactions of this nature. A rent charge 
should arise out of realty, and not out of other productive objects, 
and the realty charged must be really productive. It inevitably 
followed that as soon as a money economy prevailed rent charges in 
kind disappeared before rent charges in cash. Both parties to the 
contract found their account. The lender in effect obtained an interest 
on his capital, the landowner the means for improving his cultivation. 

The link between the new method and the old was the census 
reservativus, by which the land was actually handed over to the owner 
of the charge. Externally this resembled a mortgage, the canonists' 
distinction being that in a mortgage the mortgagee was bound to reckon 
the produce against the capital advanced by him, if he were to avoid 
the guilt of usury. The Abbot of St. Augustine's, Canterbury, whose 
transactions while Prior of Bath are impeached, not on account of 
their canonical invalidity, but for alleged malversation, appears, 
doubtless at the solicitation of the lay mortgagee, to have transgressed 
the canonical limitations already laid down by the Summists of the 
thirteenth century. He is charged (p. 27) with having mortgaged the 
manor of Chelworth in Somerset, the property of the house, to one 
John Chaneys, and in addition to the produce to which, ex vi termini, 
the mortgagee was entitled, he covenanted, in the name of the priory, 
to pay to him and his son 26s, 8cL (two marks) during their lives. 
Where a lender did not desire to farm himself the land remained in 
the possession of the obligor, subject to the rent charge agreed upon. 
This received the name of census constitutivus. It followed naturally 
that the lender began to stipulate for the wider security of the whole 
of the lands of the obligor. This extension of the system obviously 
assimilated it to the lending of money upon interest, provoking the 
hostility of the severer canonists, and, at a later date, evoking the 
condemnation of Luther. Plainly, where, as in the case of religious 
corporations, the security was first-rate, the right to receive the rent 
charge was easily convertible into money. The return to the invest- 
ment would then vary, not according to the produce of an imaginary 
piece of land, but according to the amount of the capital expended on 
its purchase. 

The greater number of the rent charges created by the Prior of 
Bath were in the nature of a census constitutivus. But of this there 
were two classes. There was the rent charge in perpetuity and the 
rent charge payable for lives. Of these the first resembles the type 
imiversally approved by the canonists, that of a right to receive the 
produce of a specified piece of land ; the second comes perilously near 



INTRODUCTION Ixxxv 

lending money upon interest. Before this date, however, it had 
received the approval of Laurentius de Budolfis, a canonist of authority 
who wrote in the opening years of the fifteenth century. 

In creating three of these, as well as three of the former class, 
the prior therefore was not liable to ecclesiastical censure. Naturally 
the price of a perpetual rent charge was higher, though the 
diflFerence in the terms between the first of these, which was fifty 
years' purchase, and the third at 26§ years' purchase, was so 
great as to suggest that these transactions were not frequent 
and were settled rather by bargaining than by custom.* From the 
point of view of the forbidden thing, interest, the perpetual rent 
charges paid the investors 2Z. per cent., 31. per cent., and between 
SI. and 41. per cent. In the case of the only rent charge of the 
terminable class, of which the conditions are free from incalculable 
complications, the annuity of ten marks purchased for 210 marks, 
or twenty-one years' purchase, yielded a return of nearly five per cent.* 

Among other receipts alleged to have been appropriated by the 
former prior to his own use were 183i. 6«. 6d. for the grants of 
corodies. It is remarkable that while grants of corodies by religious 
houses seem to have been a universal custom, they nevertheless lay 
under ecclesiastical prohibition. In 1268 Cardinal Ottoboni, Papal 
legate, and the General Council of Lambeth passed a constitution 
(xlviii.) ' quod nuUi religiosi vendant vel assignent aliis liberationes ' 
(corodies) . The ground of the prohibition certainly touched the present 
case. The constitution sets out that the income of the religious houses 
was thereby diminished, while the purchase money was appropriated 
by their superiors. ^ 

Another case, which had its inception elsewhere than before the powo r. 

Newman. 

statutory court of the Star Chamber, is the case of Fowe and another 
r. Newman (p. 227), interesting as illustrating the history of the 
ancient archiepiscopal Court of Audience. This Court was the 
ecclesiastical counterpart of the King's Court of Requests. Archbishop 
Parker ^ describes it as ' domestica pene et familiaris Archiepiscopi 
curia.' He expressly tells us that its two judges, each of whom 

* Qu. how far these terms were open to problems associated with these forms of 
ecclesiastical ceDsare, as being in contra- rent charge see id. ii. 137, foil, 
vention of an Extravagant of Martin 6, in * D. Wilkins, * CJoncilia ' (1737), ii. 17. 
1425, limiting the price of perpetual rent An example of a corody is printed in F. A. 
charges to ten to fourteen years' purchase ? Oasquet, ' Henry 8 and the English Mo- 
See W. Endemann, ♦ Studien in der ro- nasteries ' (1889), ii. App. ii. p. 631. 
manisch-kanonistischen Wirthschafts- and * * De Aiitiquitate Britannics Ecdesis * 
Rechtslehre ' (Berlin, 1883), u. Ill, 112. (1672), p. 46. 

' P. 27. For a number of casuistical 



Ixxxvi COUIiT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

enjoyed the title of 'Curke Audientiae Gantuariensis causarum et 
negotiorum Auditor/ accompanied the Archbishop in his Visitations 
(' eum ubique sequuti sunt '), as Masters of Requests did the 
sovereign. But, like the Court of Bequests, it would seem that at 
some time prior to the archiepiscopate of Warham, the Court was 
fixed at Lambeth. The title ' causarum Auditor ' and the regula- 
tions issued by Warham show that at that date (1507) the Court 
took cognisance of litigation ; a fact further attested by this case. 
Warham's regulations are printed in Wilkins's * Concilia ' (1737), 
iii. 660, as ' Statuta et Ordinationes domini Willielmi Warham 
archiepiscopi Cantuaricnsis in curia audientiae apud Lambeth 
edita et publicata tertio die mensis Februarii, anno Domini MDVII. 
et ejusdem translationis anno quinto de consensu omnium advoca- 
torum et procuratorum ejusdem curiae.' In these statutes Warham 
made provision for the gratuitous and speedy hearing of poor men's 
causes and their representation by advocates of the Court. Two of 
the clauses are described as ' pro communi litigantium utilitate,' 
and limitations of time are prescribed for the delivery of the 
litigants' pleadings. 

According to Lyndwood, the Court of Audience was not a juris- 
diction belonging to the Primate as archbishop, but as 'legatus 
natus,' there being no mention of an archiepiscopal Court of Audience 
in the canon law.^ After the renunciation of Papal supremacy in 
1536 by the * Acte extynguysshing the auctoryte of the Busshop of 
Rome' (28 Hen. 8, c. 10) exception was taken upon this ground 
to the continuance of the Court under Cranmer. According to Strype, 
this was a vexatious manoeuvre of the conservative clergy directed by 
Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester. Besides the technical objection to 
Cranmer*8 jurisdiction, they urged the more substantial ground that 
* every man must, by virtue of that court, be forced up to London 
from the farthest part of the land, for a slanderous word, or a trifle.' * 
Cranmer replied that he held the Court by authority of Parliament 
under the proviso of the seventeenth section of the Act 25 Hen. 8, 
c. 19 (*An Acte for the submission of the Clergie to the Kynges 
Majestic '). The section in question provides that * this acte or any 
thynge therein conteyned shall not hereafter be taken nor expounded 
to the derogacion or takyng away of any grauntes or confirmacions 
of any liberties privy leges or jurisdiccion of any Monasteries, 
Abbeys Prioryes or other Houses or places exempte whiche here to 

* See E. Gibson, ' Ck>dex Juris Eccle- - J. Strype, ' Memorials of Cranmer * 

siastici ' (Oxford, 1761), ii. 1005, n.l. (Oxford. 1840), i. 66. 



INTRODUCTION Ixxxvii 

fore the makyng of this acta hath byn obteyned at the See of Rome 
or by auctoritie therof.* The weakness of this defence did not 
escape the acute controversiahsts on the other side. They also 
renewed the utilitarian argument. * Consideryng,' they urged, 
' that the Bishop of Canterbery besyde all the Courts within hys own 
Diocesse, kepith in London a Courte at the Arches, suflScyently 
aucthorized to hier and to determine all causes and complayntes ap- 
perteynyng to a Metropolitane ; why should he require this other 
Court of his Audience, to kepe yt in London, within the Churche 
and jurisdiction of an other Bisshop except he mynded to call other 
Bishops obedientiary out of their jurisdiction, contrarie to the Act ? 
Or else at the lest, forasmuch as this Courte is kept within the 
Church and jurisdiction of London, and th Arches Courte within 
the city, but not within the jurisdiction, if he may not vexe the 
Citezens and Diocesanes of London at thArches without an Appele 
first from hys Ordinary ymmediately, because of the Canon Lawes, 
yet he might pull them to hys Audience at Pauls, as he dyd hereto- 
fore by hys Legacie, and yet ofifende not that Act made anno xxiij^ 
that no man shalbe called out of his own Dioces.' ^ 

This argument discloses the change already mentioned in the 
history of the Court of Audience. It had ceased to be ambulatory, 
and it was no longer held in the archbishop's palace, but in St. Paul's 
Cathedral. Notwithstanding the force of the objections, both on 
technical and utilitarian grounds, the King stood by Cranmer, and 
the Court continued. Nevertheless, it is clear that a change took 
place, probably associated with its removal to St. Paul's. Archbishop 
Parker, writing before 1572, states that the Court had jurisdiction 
over 'omnes Provincialium querelas, causas et appellationes.' But 
he goes on to say that the functions of the Auditors and of the Chancellor, 
to which last ofiScial non-contentious business was originally deputed, 
had long since (' diu ') been merged, and that the judgements of the 
Court were pronounced by the Chancellor in St. Paul's Cathedral. As 
to the disappearance of Utigation, Parker, perhaps out of concern for 
archiepiscopal prerogative, says nothing ; and the change is also un- 
noticed by Coke, who, writing a generation later, says of the Court of 
Audience that it ' medleth not with any matter between party and 
party of contentious jurisdiction, but dealeth with matters pro forma, 
as confirmations of bishops, elections, consecrations and the like, and 
with matters of voluntary jurisdiction, as the granting of the guardian- 
ship of the spiritualities sede vacante of bishops, admissions and 

' J. Strype, ' Mem. Cranmer,' ii. 716, Append, xvii. 



Ixxxviii COURT OF THE STAK CHAMBER 

institutions to benefices, dispensing with banes of matrimony, and 
such like.'^ That the complaints against the abuses of the Court were 
not without ground appears from a letter of Archbishop Parker, dated 
November 20, 1560, addressed to * Dr. Gale, my Chancellor and Judge 
of my Court of Audience.' In this letter the Archbishop condemns the 
conduct of the officials of his Court in encouraging appeals from and 
issuing inhibitions to the bishops and other ordinaries.*-* Burn, following 
Johnson's * Collection of Ecclesiastical Laws,' mentions the absorption 
of the Court of Audience by the Court of Arches without assigning any 
date.^ * The three great offices of official principal of the archbishop, 
dean or judge of the peculiars and official of the Audience are and have 
been for a long time past united in one person, under the general name of 
dean of the arches, who keepeth his Court in Doctors' Commons Hall.' 
The fact that, as Parker mentions, the law and practice as well as the 
advocates and proctors of the Court of Audience and the Court of 
Arches were the same rendered the amalgamation of the two Courts 
inevitable. The preamble of a statute to which reference has ahready 
been made, passed in 1582 and intituled ' An Acte that no persone 
shalbe cited oute of the Diocese where he or she dwelleth excepte in 
certayne cases' (23 Hen. 8, c. 9), illustrates the kind of grievance 
of which this case of * Powe and another v. Newman ' is probably an 
example. The Archbishops' Courts of Audience and the Court of 
Arches were exploited by malevolent persons for the annoyance of 
their neighbours- Men, their wives and servants, the Act complains, 
were cited to appear before these Courts ' many tymes to aunswere to 
surmysed and feyned causes and suites of defamacion, witholding of 
tithes and such other like causes and matters which have byn sued 
more for malice and for vexacion than for any juste cause of suite.' 
The officer serving the citation was styled the Somoner or Apparitor, 
the last appearing to be the general designation, while * Summonitor ' 
was that used in the diocese of Canterbury (Cowel, Interp. sub 
Summoner). He is contemptuously described by the Act as a * light 
litteratt person.' Having served the citation he returned a certificate 
to that effect into the Court. In default of appearance the person 
cited * hath ben excommunicated or at the least suspended from all 
dyvyne service,' this last being a penalty usually inflicted on lay 
persons. An indispensable preliminary to the removal of these 
spiritual disabilities was payment of the Court fees * amountyng to 
the somme of ij s. or xx d. at the leest.' In addition to this the Apparitor 

» 4 Inst. c. 74, p. 336. Archbishop Edmund Grindal,' p. 303. 

* J. Strype, ' Life of Matthew Parker' * ' Ecclesiastical Law,' 9th ed., edited by 

(Oxford, 1821), i. 161. See also id. * Life of B. Phillimore (1842), i. [106]. 



INTRODUCTION Ixxxix 

or Summoner exacted twopence a mile for his expenses in travelling 
from the Court to the place of service. The charges must have been 
in some cases crushing. The Act, therefore, forbade the practice of 
citing persons to appear out of the diocese in which they dwelt 
except for spiritual oflFences in case of appeal, where the judge showed 
interest or negligence or where the inferior Court specially requested a 
determination by the archbishop. 

But for the indorsement it might have been supposed that the 
documents had fallen out of Archbishop Warham's pocket ; for the 
case discloses a contempt of a spiritual Court by the assault and 
imprisonment of the bearer of its letters of citation. This person 
was, by the constitutions of the Papal legate, Cardinal Otho (Ottoboni) 
in 1287, an ofiScer dispatched by the judge of the Ecclesiastical Court, 
and not, as theretofore, a servant of the adverse litigant.^ Abuse 
of his person was clearly a case of contempt of Court, and the 
draughtsman in pointing out that one of the persons aggrieved was 
a ' mandatory ' of the Court perhaps had in his mind the statutes 
*de consistorio de arcubus Londoniarum' of Archbishop Robert 
Winchelsey (1295). The forms of contempt therein enumerated are 
' in non parendo mandatis, in impediendo quo minus ad mandatarium 
tempore competenti perveniant, in vituperiis factis partibus vel nunciis 
mandatoris et in faciendo contra mandata.' The procedure was a 
summons for the contempt, and on conviction the reimbursement to 
the party complaining of his expenses and a fine to the Court. 
Contumacy was punished by excommunication.* The excommunica- 
tion being notified to the King, the writ de excommunicato capiendo, 
commonly called a ' significavit,* issued as follows : * Rex Vicecomiti 
Lincoln' salutem. Significavit nobis venerabilis pater H. Lincoln ' 
Episcopus per literas suas patentes quod B. suus parochianus vel suae 
diocesis propter suam manifestam contumaciam authoritate ipsius 
Episcopi ordinaria excommunicatus est, nee se vult per censuram 
ecclesiasticam justiciari. Quia vero potestas regia sacrosanctse 
ecclesisB in querelis suis deesse non debet, tibi prsBcipimus quod 
praedictum B. per corpus suum secundum consuetudinem Angli® 
justicies donee sanctsB ecclesise tam de contemptu quam de injuria 
ei illata ab eo fuerit satisfactum. Teste &c.' ^ The provision for 
deaUng with contempts being thus complete, it is diflBcult to under- 
stand upon what principle the Council, whether or not sitting in the 

' D. Wilkins, * Concilia ' (1737), i. 656. » E. Gibson, Codex Juris, Ac. (1761), ii. 

Constitutlones Otbonis Cardinalis. Const. 1055, where the subsequent prooeedings in 

xxvi. De Citationibus faciendis. default of a return by the sheriff are set 

« lb. p. 209. forth. 



XC COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Star Chamber, took cognisance of the matter. It is conceivable that, 
the practice being for the King to summon the sheriflF * coram nobis 
ubicunque &c.' to shew cause in case of default, the Council stretched 
its jurisdiction by dealing with the oflFender directly. It may be, of 
course, that the Council or the Court refused to interfere, but in the 
absence of the judgements of the Star Chamber this must remain 
doubtful. Certainly the claims put forward by its panegyrist Hudson, 
more than a hundred years later, would justify the intervention of 
the Star Chamber in this case ; for he arrogates to it a * superlative 
power ... to take causes from other Courts and punish them here.' ^ 
He also mentions a case of his own day in which 'the grave 
archbishops and bishops ' removed an ecclesiastical cause to the Star 
Chamber,* and he lays down the proposition that * for misdemeanors 
committed in any court the judges of that court may punish it ; so 
may the court of Star Chamber also.' ^ 

KraSSSn"* ^^^ lawlessness of the country gentry at this period is well 

exemplified in the case of Straimge v. Kenaston, the sequel of an 
hereditary feud, of which mention has already been made. The de- 
fendant, Humfrey Kenaston, or Kynaston, of Stokkes, Stokes, or Stockes, 
has been identified by Mr. H. Hudson, author of the romance * Wild 
Humfrey Kynaston,' with the celebrated gentleman-highwayman, the 
Robin Hood of Shropshire, whose memory yet survives in the neigh- 
bourhood of his fastness, the cavern of Nescliffe. 'Wild Humfrey 
Kynaston,' according to the Harleian Society's pedigree,^ was son and 
heir of Sir Roger Kynaston of Hordley, three miles south-west of 
Ellesmere, and Morton, three miles south of Oswestry. He is stated 
by Lloyd * to have been the second son of Sir Roger Kynaston. The 
documents collected by Mr. Hudson state him to have been the 
youngest son by a second marriage.^ A pedigree is in the possession 
of the Rev. Walter Kynaston of Hardwick, Salop, to whose kindness in 
permitting the inspection of his family papers I am anxious to record 
my obligations. This pedigree, drawn up about the end of the 
eighteenth century, makes him the second of three sons of Sir Roger 
Kynaston '^ by his second wife Elizabeth, sister of Richard Grey, 
Lord Powis. Sir Roger had no issue by his first wife, Elizabeth 
Cobham, Lady Straunge,^ but by his second wife three sons and six 
daughters. According to this pedigree the eldest son of Sir Roger was 

' * Of the Court of Star Chamber,' p. 115. • » Wild Humfrey Kynaston/ p. 343. 

* lb. p. 19. * lb. p. 117. ' For the exploits of Sir Roger Kynaston 

* Vol. xvii. p. 37. see pp. Ixi-lxiv supra. 

* 'History of the Princes of Powys* " Harl. Soo. xxix. ii. 296. O. E. C, 
(18S2), iii. 7. * Complete Peerage,* vii. 274. 



INTRODUCTION xci 

Sir Thomas Kynaston of Hordley, knight, Sheriff of Salop in 1507 
and 1508, who died leaving no legitimate issue. In this way * Wild 
Humfrey ' Kynaston became, as the Harleian Society pedigree states, 
heir to Sir Roger Kynaston. This Humfrey Kynaston is described in 
Mr. Kynaston's pedigree as of Morton, in* the lordship of Knockin, 
CO. Salop. He lived with his mother in Myddle Castle, Salop, and a 
joint bond in the possession of the Corporation of Shrewsbury given 
by mother and son for a loan of 20Z. indicates that they were at one 
time in pecuniary difficulties (Hudson, p. 346). At some time prior 
to 1491, in which year he is described in a coroner's indictment as 
' late of Nescliffe,' Humfrey, being outlawed for debt, took refuge 

* in the cliff that overhangs Great Nesse, to which he ascended by 
twenty-four ill-guarded steps with his horse, who stabled in an 
apartment adjoining his master.' ^ While in this fastness he became 
a terror to the countryside, indulging in acts of depredation upon 
the rich and whimsical generosity to the poor, which led to. the 
association of his name with Robin Hood. In 1491 he was indicted 
for the wilful murder of one John Heughes in the course of an 
affray in which he was accompanied by his elder brother Thomas and 
a number of others of all classes — gentry, tradesmen, and labourers — 
in all about forty persons. The indictment describes him as * late of 
Nesscliffe . . . otherwise late of Pole . . . otherwise late of Knockyn,' 
which shows that he had had no fixed abode or was in hiding. For 
this crime he received a pardon under the Broad Seal, still preserved 
at Hardwick, addressed, ' Humfrido Kynaston Armigero seu quo- 
cumque alio nomine censeatur.' The pardon is in very wide terms, 
embracing all possible crimes of violence, but reserving their legal 
rights to private persons who have cause against him. It is dated 
May 20, 8 Henry 7 (1493), and countersigned * Clerk.' « In the 

* List of Monies received by Edmund Dudley for the King, 20-23 
Hen. 7' is an entry dated January 25, 20 Henry 7 (1505), 'For 
pardon of Humfrey Kynaston 200 markes * (i.e. 133Z. 6«. 6d.).^ The 
preceding entries appear to show that it was a payment ' for his 
offence in his shrevaltie.' But at this date no Kynaston had been 
sheriff since Sir Roger Kynaston in 1471. The payment must have 
been of some other account; but it remains doubtful whether the 
payer was the outlaw or a namesake, who, for reasons to be presently 
given, may be identified with the defendant before the Star Chamber 
in 1508. 

* W. Camden, ' Britannia/ ed. B. Qough to have graduated BA. at Cambridge in 

(1806), iii. 35. 1499. See * Diet. Nat. Biog.' 

"* This can scarcely be John Clerk, Master '^ J. S. Bum, 'The Star Chamber' (1870), 

the Bolls in 1528, since he only appears p. 36, from B. M. Lansd. MSS. 160, f. 320. 



XCll COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

According to Gough/ who wrote in 1700, * wild Humfrey's ' first 
wife was a person of an obscure Welsh family. Mr. J. Y. W. 
Lloyd, the author of the ' Princes of Powis,' gives her name as Jane, 
daughter of Oliver Lloyd of Llai.^ * I have not heard,' says Gough, * of 
any children which wild Humphrey had, but I have heard of much 
debt that he contracted.' Upon the death of Jane he is stated to have 
married Elizabeth Meredith.^ The Kynaston pedigree, however, gives 
the name of his first wife as Mariana, daughter of William ap Griffith 
ap Kobyn, by whom * wild Humphrey ' is there stated to have had 
a daughter and a son Edward, who died without issue. The same 
pedigree gives as his second wife Elizabeth, daughter of Meredith ap 
Howell ap Morrice of Oswestrie, by whom he is said to have left two 
sons, of whom one, Edward Kynaston of Hordley (1584), married 
(1) Margaret, daughter of Edward Lloyd of Lwyr-y-mane, and 
(2; Margaret, daughter of Humphrey Kynaston of Stokes, the 
defendant before the Star Chamber. This line, according to the 
Kynaston pedigree, were the ancestors of the Kynastons of Hardwick. 
But if * wild Humfrey Kynaston * were the same person as Humfrey 
Kynaston of Stockes, this would have been a marriage between 
brother and sister ! The defendant before the Star Chamber, Humphrey 
Kenaston of Stockes, or Stokes, was really the first cousin once removed 
and contemporary of ' wild Humfrey Kynaston.' The Kynaston pedigree 
shews him to have been one of a branch of the family settled at 
Stockes, Stokes, or Stock for some generations, he being the son of 
Piers Kynaston of Stokes by Margaret, daughter of Edward ap Morgan 
of Atreley and grandson of John Kynaston of Stockes, brother 
of Sir Koger Kynaston of Hordley and father of 'wild Humfrey.' 
It was probably this * Humfrey Kynaston ' (of Stockes) who entered 
France on June 16, 1518, as one of the two captains of the 
Shropshire contingent.* An Inquisition post mortem taken at Shrews- 
bury May 28, 35 Hen. 8 (1543), upon the death of his son George, 
presents *that Humfrey Kynaston, father of the said George, was 
seised of lands in Stock, Elston, Grennyleth and Northwod and other 
places on 17 Jany. 23 Hen. 7 ' (1508). Qu. whether he, and not 
* wild Humfrey Kynaston,' is not the Humfrey Kynaston whose will 
dated May 1, 1534, is set out by Hudson (p. 335), and is in possession 
of the Eev. Walter Kynaston of Hardwick. That testator seems to 
have been a man of considerable landed estate, and the names of his 

* * Antiquities and Memoirs of the Parish ' Hudson, p. 346. 

of Myddle, Co. Salop/ published in 1834. * S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, 1. 4253. 

« Vol. iii. p. 7. 



INTOODUCTION XClll 

first and second wives, as recited in the will, are Marian ^ and Ysabella 
respectively. Moreover, Humfrey Kynaston of Stockes, as being of a 
younger generation, is more likely to have survived till 1534. It may 
be added that tradition has it that * wild Humfrey Kynaston ' died in 
his cave ; a corroboration, or possibly the origin, of Gough's sarcastic 
comment about his debts. Myddle Castle was described by Leland as 
* very ruinous.' ^ According to the plaintiff, her reason for invoking 
the aid of the Star Chamber was that the outrage alleged against 
Kenaston had been committed within the jurisdiction of her Court of the 
March of EUesmere, and that to try it there would neither be * semyng 
nor convenient.' It is probable that her Court would not have been 
able to execute its sentence. Wales was at this time in a state 
of rampant anarchy fostered in no small degree by the conflict of 
jurisdictions. The general scheme of government during the early 
years of Henry 7's reign was that of his predecessors.^ There 
was a Council, estabhshed in 1478, of Lords Marchers. The admini- 
stration of justice was entrusted to military men nominated chief 
justices of North and South Wales respectively. Sir Wilham Stanley, 
who had received a grant of the former oflBce for life from Richard 3 
(November 12, 1483, Pat. Rolls, 1 Ric. 3, i. p. 368), was continued as 
Justice of North Wales (Pat. Roll, Feb. 2, 1 Hen. 7) and Jasper 
Tudor, Duke of Bedford, was created Justice of South Wales 
(ib. Dec. 13, 1 Hen. 7). In 1504 the government was reconstituted 
under a council of ten, of whom the head, styled Lord President 
of Wales or of the Council of the Marches of Wales, was William 
Smyth, Bishop of Lincoln. But side by side with the jurisdiction 
of this council and in constant rivalry with it ran that of the 
Lords Marchers. It was the more difficult to restrain in that it 
was substantially the jurisdiction of the English garrison, founded 
upon military exigencies and therefore indeterminate. * There is noe 
record to be found in the Tower or elsewhere in England of any graunt 
made to any to be a Lorde Marcher in Wales, or any libertie graunted 
to any of them as they themselves then and long time after vsed. . . . 
These lords themselves were forced of necessitye to execute lawes of 
soueraigne governours over their tenants and people in those straunge 
countreys and lordships subdued by them, which the kings of England 
did for policie per mitt for a tyme.' ^ The Lords Marchers were 

* It is, of oourse, possible that both the - ' Itin.* vii. 32 ed. Hearne, 1745. 

namesakes married a wife Marian ; but I * See Lord Baoon * On the Jurisdiction 

incline to think that the Kynaston pedigree of the Marches ' (' Works,' ed. Ellis and 

borrowed this name from the will, and that Spedding, 1859), vii. 588. 

the will is wrongly ascribed to ' wild * Harl. MS. 141, quoted by J. Y. W. 

Humfrey.' Lloyd, • History of Powys ' (1882), ii. 14. 



XCIV COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

constantly in dispute with each other and with the central government 
at Ludlow. The consequences are set forth in the 11th section of the 
Act 26 Hen. 8, c. 6 (1534) intituled *An Acte that murders and 
felonies done or committed within any Lordshippe Marcher in 
Wales shalbe enquired of at the Sessions holden within the 
Shore groundes next adioyninge, with many good orders for 
ministracion of Justice there to be had.' The section runs as 
follows : * And where heretofore upon dyvers murders robberyes 
and felonyes perpetratyd and doone, as well within the Lorde- 
shippes marchers of Wales as yn other places of Wales withoute the 
same Lordshippes, the OflFenders dyverse tymes flee and escape from 
the same Lordeshippe or other place where suche oflFence was com- 
mytted, and have repayred and resorted ynto a nother Lordshippe 
marcher, and there by the ayde, comfort and favour of the saide 
Lord of the same Lordshippe or his oflScer or oflfycers have bene 
abydynge and resiaunte, ynto whiche Lordeshippes the same Lordes 
marchers have and doo pretende a custome and privylege that none of 
the Kynges Mynistres or subjectes may entre to pursue, apprehende 
and attache any suche offender thereunto repayred as aforesaid, by 
reason wherof the same Oflfendours wente unpunyshed to the 
anymacyon and encouragynge of other yll dysposed people ' ^ &c. 
Similarly in the Act 27 Hen. 8, c. 26 (1536), * An Acte for Lawes 
and Justice to be ministered in Wales in like fourme as it is in this 
Realme ' after an enumeration of the crimes perpetrated in Wales, it is 
added that ' the said offenders, making their refuge from Lordeshippe to 
Lordeshippe, were and contynued without punyshement or correccion.' 
It will be seen from these recitals that the Lords Marchers claimed the 
widest powers. In 1599 (M. T. 42 Eliz.) in the hearing of an informa- 
tion laid by Edward Coke, esquire, A — G, against Thomas Cornewall, 
of Burford, Salop, esquire, the defendant pleaded that prior to the 
above Act of 1536 * diverse seperales persone fuerunt seisiti de diuersis 
seperalibus dominiis Marchiarum Anglice Lordships Marchers in 
Wallia, ac similiter tenuerunt in eisdem regales leges et jurisdictionem 
tarn de vita et membro quam de terris et tenemcntis et aliis rebus 
quibuscunque ac potuerunt pardonare ac liberam et plenam potestatem 
habuerunt per totum predictum tempus cuius contrarii memoria 
hominum cunc non extitit pardonandi omnes proditiones felonia et 
alia offensa quecunque infra seperalia dominia sua predicta adeo libere 
et in tam amplis modo et forma prout dominus Bex potuit facere^in 
dominiis suis predictis.' These persons further claimed, according to 

' The statute proceeds to enact provisions for extradition. 



INTRODUCTION XCV 

the same docament, that ' breve Begis huius Begni Anglie pro 
tempore existentis non corrat in aliquo modo in predicto dominio 
territorio sine patria Wallie nee in aliquo predictorum dominiorum 
• eiasdem.' * There were evident reasons, therefore, besides that of 
seemUness, why the plaintiff should not endeavour to try the defendant 
in her own Oourt.^ The case, on the other hand, exhibits the need 
for the Star Chamber as a tribunal for the enforcement of order 
by the central power where redress was not to be had from local 
authority.^ 

A good example of the persistence of the social disorganisation left Abbot of 
by the Wars of the Roses, which it was the special function of the mSecoi^** 
Star Chamber to remedy, is to be found in the case of Miles Salley, 
Abbot of Eynesham, against his great neighbour, Sir Robert Harecourt 
of Stanton Harcourt. Even before the outbreak of civil war, the 
administration of justice had become ineffective. The nobility and 
rural magnates kept retainers, whose energies found vent in private 
war, riot, and oppression. To insure their immunity their employers 
intimidated witnesses, brought ' routs in the presence of the justices,' ^ 
corrupted officials, and conspired with the royal representatives in the 
counties, the sheriffs, to pack juries and defeat justice. The charges 
made against Sir Robert Harecourt comprised most of those denounced 
by the statute book as subversive of public order. He was alleged to 
maintain retainers, to incite to riot, to pervert the process of justice. 
These were not offences unprovided against by statute before the reign 
of Henry 7. On the contrary, as has been seen, the character of 
Henry 7*s legislation is not the creation of new offences nor the 
framing of new prohibitory Acts. It was rather the revival of 
moribund legality and the construction of an efficient machinery for 
its enforcement. 

In a warlike age and in a society founded upon the relations of 

* Sir E. Coke, *A Boke of Entries,' the membres of the same shalbe united 
London, 1614, p. 549. Bacon, in his joynedandknyte to the Hundred of Pymhill 
argument * On the Jurisdiction of the as the inhabitauntes of the same Hundred 
Marches,' says : ' By that statute (27 nowe do and use acoordinge to the Lawes 
Hen. 8, c. 26) all the lordships of this Bealme of England.' 
marchers are made shire ground, being * An interesting monograph, * The Con- 
either annexed to the ancient counties of dition of Wides,' forms Appendix U. of 
Walesorto the ancient counties of England, Mr. Sidney Lee's edition of the*Autobio- 
or erected into new counties and made graphy of Lord Herbert of Cherbury'( 1886). 
parcel of the dominion of Wales, and so no ^18 Ed. 3, at. 1, c. 1 (1344). Cf. 20 
more marches after the statute of 27.' Ed. 3, c. 5 (1346), both being statutes 
' Works,' vii. 588. against the practice of ' maintenance ' of 

' By the above Act it was provided more or less fictitious lawsuits brought by 

(§ 9) ' that the Lordshippe of EUesmere with retainers. 

f 



XCvi COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

protection and dependence, the enlistment of retainers was a natural 
object of ambition. The country gentleman aped the peer, and in 
1377 the Commons, petitioning the Crown for a check to the practice, 
sarcastically remark that ' diverses gentz de petitz garisons de terre 
ou de rent facent graunde mayntenance de quereles et retenues des 
gentz ' (Rot. Pari. iii. 23, a). The impoverishment left by the wars of 
Edward 3 compelled even esquires to wear the liveries of their 
wealthier neighbours. The King's response was that there were 
statutes for dealing with the mischief; but, as though doubtful of 
this, he adds that there is also the common law. Nevertheless, in 
accordance with the petition, an Act was passed denouncing the 
giving of hats or suits as a livery. The language of the Act suggests 
that the giving of hats was practised by these pretenders, and it is 
cited in 7 Hen. 4, c. 14, as ' the statute of the livery of hats.' The 
justices of assize were ordered to inquire into offences of this class, as 
well as into the assumption of liveries by fraternities (1 Ric. 2, c. 7). 
The truth is, as the King's response discloses, that the statutes, which 
were chiefly directed against ' maintenance,' did not hit the mischief ; 
nor is it easy to see how the common law could be invoked where 
there was no actual breach of the peace. The commons, emboldened 
by this success, presently renewed their attack on the nobles. The 
so-called Act ^ 13 Ric. 2, st. 3, c. 1, sets forth that ' grievous com- 
plaint and great clamour hath been made unto Us, as well by the 
lords spiritual and temporal as by the commons of our realm of great 
and outrageous oppressions and maintenances made to the damage 
of Us and of our people in divers parts of the same realm by divers 
maintainours, instigators, barretors, procurours and embraceours 
of quarrels and inquests in the country, whereof many are the more 
encouraged and bold in their maintenance and evil deeds aforesaid 
because that they be of the retinue of lords and others of our said 
realm with fees, robes and other liveries called liveries of company.' 
Accordingly the giving and wearing of liveries was prohibited, except 
in the case of lay peers, who were allowed to give them to household 
dependents or to knights and esquires who should engage by indenture 
to serve them for life. Retainers were to be dismissed. Offenders 
were punishable at the discretion of the Council. It is clear from a 

' As it appears in the Statutes of the expression of it ' le Boy et les Seigneurs du 

Realm, 11. 74, it is not an Act but a writ to Parlement ont ordelnez tlel remede ' (Bot. 

the Sheriff of Kent, a petition of the Pari. iii. 266, b), and another petition of 

Commons in 1389, complaining of its in- 1393 (ib. 807, a) distinctly afi&rms that it 

effectiveness, treating it rather as an ordi- was so. 
nance of the Council, though it uses the 



INTRODUCTION XCVII 

petition of the Commons in 1889 ^ that this measure was ineffective, 
possibly because it lacked full statutory authority. In the same 
session of 1889 the Commons complained again ' that cloth liveries 
were being given, as though these had taken the place of liveries of 
hats. An attempt was made to suppress the practice by the issue of 
letters of Privy Seal to lords and of Writs to the sheriffs.* The result 
was that people took to wearing the liveries, not of great lords or 
country gentlemen, but of fraternities.^ These must have been equally 
serviceable in civil discords, since the members were associated by 
common interests and common political sympathies. Famous among 
them was the Fellowship of the White Hart, a body of royal retainers 
utilised by Richard 2 in his attempt at despotism. In 1897 the 
Commons again remonstrated with the King for neglecting to enforce 
the law against the nobles.^ It was perhaps a symptom of the growing 
weakness of the Crown that the Act which followed this petition 
prohibited all of the degree of yeomen from taking the livery of a 
lord, though apparently leaving it open to esquires to do so.^ That 
the practice begot oppressions grievous to the Commons is evident 
from the complaints and pertinacity of the petitions. One of the 
earliest Acts of the reign of Henry 4, who was anxious at the 
same time to conciliate the Commons and to curb the power of the 
great lords, was a drastic measure of prohibition. Temporal lords 
were forbidden to give any liveries save to their households. Even 
the King himself was not allowed to give his livery to a yeoman, nor 
might a yeoman wear it. Liveries of honour given by the King to 
noble or gentle men might only be worn at Court.^ These restrictions 
on the King's liveries were relaxed in the session of 1401, so far as 
that peers and bannerets were permitted to wear the King's livery 
elsewhere than at Court.^ But this relaxation was due to the King 
and not to the Commons, who, mindful of the mischievous activity of 
*the White Hart,* had proposed a list of heavy penalties upon 
infractions of the previous statute.^ 

The rising of Archbishop Scrope in 1405 evidently suggested the 
statute of the next session ^^ which begins by reciting and confirming 

' See preceding note. The date 1389- * Rot. Pari. iii. 266, a. 

1390, assigned by the Statutes of theBeahn ^ Bot. Pari. ib. 339, a. 

to the King's writ to the Sheriff of Kent, * 20 Bio. 2, c. 2 (1397). 

most be wrong, or the ordinance on which ' 1 Hen. 4, o. 7 ; Bot. Pari. iii. 428, b. 
it was based must be of earlier date, for the (1399). 

petition of the Commons in 1389 (Bot. Pari. ** 2 Hen. 4, o. 21. 

iii. 265, b) distinctly refers to it. * Bot. Pari. iii. 478, a. 

* Bot. Pari. iu. 266, a. "7 Hen. 4, o. 14. 

• Ib. 307, a. 

f3 



XCviii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the prohibition to prelates as well as to laymen to give liveries passed 
by the Act of 1899. That the disordered state of the country had 
caused a recrudescence of the mischief is evident from the language 
of the Commons' petition. They do not complain of peers, nor of the 
infraction of * the Statute of the Livery of Hats * ; but they say that, 
notwithstanding the Act of 1399, knights bannerets, knights and 
esquires jointly (an important point) and severally give cloth liveries, 
some to as many as 300, some to 200 followers, some to less and some 
to more, and that the consequences are homicides, larcenies, murders, 
felonies, rapes, extortions, oppressions, &c., and that the confederacies 
of these wrongdoers render enforcement of the law impossible. They 
recommend that ecclesiastics be punishable for the giving of liveries 
contrary to law by a fine of lOOZ. and that the receivers of such 
liveries be fined 40^. The King added a fine of 1008. to meet the case 
of knights and esquires, re-enacted the Statute of Hats, and forbade 
any company other than the town gilds to provide liveries for its 
members.^ 

By a consolidating Act of 1411 the two statutes of 1399 and 
1406 were re-enacted and confirmed.^ The simplification of the law 
was presumably attended by an increased vigilance in its enforcement, 
for shortly after his accession Henry 5 granted a general pardon for 
all offences against it committed prior to December 8, 1414,^ and the 
indulgence was extended in 1416.* During the minority of Henry 6 
the practice of giving liveries and hats revived, and the Commons com- 
plained in 1427 that it was becoming prevalent among knights and 
persons of less degree. The law, they said, was not enforced because 
the offenders conspired to prevent their indictment by the grand 
juries. They urged, therefore, that the justices of assize and the 
justices of the peace should be authorised either at the suit of the 
King or of a private person, without indictment found, to issue writs 
of attachment and distress against the offenders, directed to the 
sheriffs of their counties, and that in the event of their non-appear- 
ance Capias^ and Exigent® should issue as though they had failed to 
answer to an indictment. Against those who appeared the penalties 
of the existing statutes were to be enforced. But these proposals for 

^ 7 Hen. 4, o. 14. ' * A writ that lyeth where the defendant 

' 13 Hen. 4, c. 3. in an action personal cannot be found, nor 

* Bot. Pari. iv. 40, b. anything in the county whereby he may be 

* lb. 96, a. attached or distrained ; and is directed to 

* Capias ad respondendum, * where the the sheriff, to proclaim and call five county- 
sheriff upon the first writ of distress re- days one after another, charging him to 
turns. Nihil habet in balliva sua.* Gowel, appearunder the pain of outlawry.* 'Termes 
* Interp.' s.v. Capias. de la Ley ' ; Cowel, ' Interp.' s.v. Exigent. 



i\ 



INTRODUCTION XCIX 

tightening the reins of the central government did not commend 
themselves to the nobles who were for the time its administrators, 
and the royal answer confined itself to an empty recommendation of 
the enforcement of the existing laws.^ Nevertheless the Commons had 
their way in the next Parliament (8 Hen. 6, c. 4) (1429), and in 
1483 the lords of the Council agreed upon a form of obligation 
binding themselves not to ' receyve, cherisshe, hold in household ne 
maynteyne' felons and other criminals.^ This oath was in 1483, at 
the instance of the Commons, imposed on all the lords of Parliament 
(Hot. Pari. V. 434, b). Upon the accession of Edward 4 in 1461 this 
obligation took the form of a charge from the King following a preamble 
to the effect that recent disorders had been much enhanced ' by yevyng 
of Lyverees and Signes.' ^ Seven years later a comprehensive statute 
was passed for the suppression of the practice. Edward's government 
had taken the hints of the Commons' petition of 1427, setting forth 
the reasons of the ineffectiveness of the law. It was not satisfied with 
re-enacting all the previous statutes and increasing the pecuniary 
penalty of the receiver of a livery from 40«. to 100«. during * every 
month that any such person is so retained.' The Act of 1468 * also 
struck at the more insidious practice of retaining by oaths, indentures, 
&c., whereby the object of the laws against liveries was frustrated with- 
out exposing the parties to statutory penalties. Such engagements 
were now brought within the prohibitions against liveries. The Act 
also opened to the common informer as well the King's Courts of Becord 
as the Courts of the Justices at Quarter Sessions. The King was to be 
an eX'Officio party to the suit, and the statutory forfeitures were made 
divisible between him and the informer.* The co-operation of the 
commonalty was further assured by granting the power of trying 
these cases to municipal authorities, not only where offences against 
the statutes had been committed by the inhabitants, but also where 
they had been sufferers in consequence of them. In the case of the 
towns, too, the informer's half was to be equally shared by the cor- 
poration for the benefit of the inhabitants. But in 1472 the Speaker, 
in the name of the Commons, protested against the non-execution of 

* Bot. Pari. iv. 330, a. of the common informer and the action of 
' Bot. Pari. iy. 344, a ; lb. 422, a. the Justices thereupon as *revolutionargegen 

* lb. 487. die Grundlagen der englischen Gerichts- 

* 8 Ed. 4, c. 2 Q468). yerfassung,' and ascribes it to Henry 7's 
' Dr. Busoh, tne learned historian of familiarity with French procedure. Whether 

Henry 7, in his account of the statute borrowed from France or not, this method 
of 1495, intituled ' An Aote agaynst un- of dispensing with the jury of indictment 
lawfull Assemblyes and other offences long preceded Henry 7, as the above refer- 
contrary to former Statutes' (11 Hen. 7, ences prove. See W. BuBoh, * England unter 
0. 8), insists on the introduction in that Act den Tudors * (Stuttgart, 1892), i. 284. 



C COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the statute.^ It was presumably out of respect for this protest that 
Edward in the same session passed a special Act enabling his eldest 
son, Edward, Prince of Wales, to give his livery and sign, the statutes 
to the contrary notwithstanding.^ Again in 1482 the Commons 
requested enforcement of the Statute of Liveries.^ It is plain that the 
common informer was too fearful of the retainer's vengeance to be 
tempted by the prospect of sharing forfeitures. 

On the accession of Henry 7 recourse was had to the former 
device of pledging the offenders to observe the statutes against liveries 
and maintenance and the harbouring of felons. The oath was first 
administered to the members of the House of Commons and to the 
knights and others of the King's household. After their retirement 
from the hall the lords spiritual and temporal were solemnly sworn 
to its observance.* But oaths, as before, were only taken to be 
broken, and the whole machinery of law for dealing with this class of 
offence had been brought to a standstill. It was clear that no private 
person could be protected against the consequences of enforcing the 
statutes. Informations, when laid before justices of the peace, were 
burked by the justices themselves. The Star Chamber Act of 1487, 
therefore, reciting among the mischiefs to be dealt with, * onlawfull 
mayntenaunces gevyng of lyveres signes and tokyns and reteyndres by 
endentur promyses other writyng or otherwise, embraciaries of his 
[the King's] subgettes' &c., provided that upon bill or information 
laid before the Court of the Star Chamber * for the kyng or any other ' 
the Court should summon the offender and deal with the case. 
Another Act of the same session deprived the rural gentry who held 
offices of profit under the Crown of the luxury of disobeying the laws 
against liveries in their character of royal officers (3 Hen. 7, c. 12. 
See p. 189, n. 7, infra). That the offence continued is apparent from 
the statute of 1495, *De Retentionibus illicitis' (19 Hen. 7, c. 14), 
passed after the date of the case with which we are now concerned. 

Sir Bobert Harecourt, the defendant in this case, was also alleged 
by the complainant to have been the inciter of the riot therein de- 
scribed. Riot, or the breach of the King's peace, was always a 
misdemeanour at common law. The provocation to it by going armed 
was forbidden in 1328 by the statute of Northampton (2 Ed. 3, c. 3). 
The prohibition was probably but little regarded, and the preamble of 
the statute of Gloucester in 1378 (2 Bic. 2, st. 1, c. 6) gives a graphic 
account of the excesses of private war throughout the country. The 

> Rot. Pari. vi. 8. » Rot. Pari. vi. 198. b. 

« 12 Ed. 4, c. 4. * Rot. ParL vi. 288, a. 



INTRODUCTION ci 

King was empowered to suppress these practices through the agency of 
special commissions. Possibly these powers were, in turn, abused, or 
were distasteful to the magnates, for the Parliament of 1379 revoked 
them on the express ground that the statute of Northampton was in 
force (2 Bic. 2, st. 2, c. 2). It was natural that during the disturbed 
reign of Henry 4 Parliament should make some eflfort to strengthen 
the law. In 1411 the duty was laid upon the justices of the peace 
and sheriffs to come with the power of the county and arrest and 
summarily convict offenders taken in the act. In cases where the 
riot was over they were to inquire and try the case within a month, 
and in the event of their failing to arrive at a conclusion as to the 
facts were to remit a certificate setting forth * tout le fait et les 
circumstances dicelle ' to the King's Council. If the accused traversed 
the matter of the certificate the case was to be tried before the King's 
Bench. Accused failing to appear were to stand convicted (18 
Hen. 4, c. 7). The persecution of the Lollards and their resistance 
led to fresh riots, which were made a subject of complaint upon the 
opening of Parliament at Leicester on April 30, 1414 (Bot. Pari. iv. 
15, b). Possibly through sympathy with the persecuted, the justices 
had been slow to exercise their powers. Power was, therefore, given 
by statute (2 Hen. 5, st. 1, c. 8) to * the party grieved to apply for a 
royal commission of inquiry, both into the original riot and into the 
default of the justices or sheriff, the inquiry to be conducted by a jury 
impanelled, in cases where the sheriff was in default, by the coroners.' 
A year's imprisonment was fixed as the minimum penalty for those 
involved in serious riots, and the fines upon rioters were to be in- 
creased. Another statute of the same session (2 Hen. 5, st. 1, c. 9) 
provided for the attaint of such rioters as failed to surrender to 
justice. These measures were made perpetual by an Act of 1429 
(8 Hen. 6, c. 14). The declaration to be taken by lords of the 
Council &c. against maintenance, liveries, &c. was expressly stated 
to be for * eschuyng of riotes, excesses, misgovernance and dis- 
obeisance ' (1429, Bot. Pari. iv. 344, a. Also in 1433, ib. 421 b, v. 
48, 4, b). In 1485 members of Parliament were sworn not to make 
* any maintenance, imbracerie, riotts or unlawfull assemblie ' (ib. vi. 
287, b). But in 1495 it was found necessary, at the instance of the 
Commons, to pass an elaborate ' Acte agaynst ryotts and unlawfull 
assemblyes' (11 Hen. 7, c. 7). The preamble recited that, not- 
withstanding the preventive statutes already existing, ' some persones 
not dreding God their sovereign lorde ne the punysshment of the 
lawes made and had in this behalfe ofte tymes aswell, by colour of 



cii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

suche offices as they have obteyned as Beceyvoors Stuardes and 
Bailiffis of Lordships and other offices as by prevy reteyndoors by 
othe promysse covenaunt and otherwise and claymyng also dutie of 
ther tenauntes and servauntes where none suche duties is, to goe with 
theym when such assemble rioute or route shalbe ' &c. The rioters 
subsequently conceal themselves, being screened from justice by their 
masters, the principal offenders. It was therefore provided that 
upon complaint to the justices of the peace, or an indictment of 
riotous assemblies, the justices of the peace should make proclamation 
against the principals or leaders to appear at the next general sessions. 
Defaulters were to stand convicted. The justices of the peace were to 
try those appearing, and to punish the convicted by imprisonment and 
fine, besides binding them over to keep the peace. Where the riot 
was committed by more than forty persons, or * by the discrecion of 
the seid justices be thought haynous,' the justices to certify accord- 
ingly, and the principal offenders to appear before the King and 
Council for punishment (see p. 286, n. 7, infra). A statute of the 
same session intituled 'An Acte agaynst unlawfull Assemblyes and 
other offences contrary to former Statutes * (11 Hen. 7, c. 8), meets 
the difficulty of the unwillingness of jurors, whether caused by 
intimidation or corruption, to find indictments by empowering justices 
of assize or of the peace to act 'uppon informacion for the king 
tofore them to be made.' The statute ' De Betentionibus illicitis ' 
(19 Hen. 7, c. 14) was not passed until 1504, a year after Sir Bobert 
Harecourt's case had come before the Star Chamber. 

Among the vexations alleged to have been inflicted by the defen- 
dant upon the abbot and monks was one which the statutes shew to 
have been common in the middle ages when neighbours fell out one 
with another. This was the bringing of malicious indictments, a 
weapon still ready to the hand of litigious persons, but seldom re- 
sorted to. As the late Mr. Justice Stephen has remarked, ' In this 
country any one and every one may accuse any one else, behind his 
back and without giving him notice of his intention to do so, of 
almost any crime whatever.' ^ In the thirteenth century the subject 
had been better protected,' for presentments of ' fama publica ' were 
made by a jury of twelve hundredors confirmed by a jury of repre- 
sentatives of the four vills before the defamed man was sent to the 
ordeal.^ This is perhaps what Stephen means when he says, somewhat 

* * Hist, of the Criminal Law ' (1883), i. and Maitland, * Hist, of Eng. Law/ ii. 537. 
293. ' Pollock and Maitland, * Hist, of Eng. 

' For the earlier history of remedies Law,' ii. 641. 
against wrongful prosecution see Pollock 



INTRODUCTION ClU 

loosely, that ' the indictment was originally an accusation presented 
by the grand jury upon their own knowledge/ * He adds : * This, 
however, has long ceased to be the case.' ^ We may, perhaps, fix the 
period at which the change had been accomplished, which change, as 
Messrs. Pollock and Maitland observe, can only be known in its details 
'when large piles of records have been systematically perused'' 
by noting the growing abuses of the new system and the eflforts 
of the legislature to suppress them. Malicious indictment was sub- 
stantially, though not technically, the offence known in the thirteenth 
century as malicious ' appeal^' i.e. accusation of felony.^ Even 
though this implied, as a rule, that the appellor must offer battle 
in person, the maUcious appeal became a favourite weapon of legal 
offence, presumably in the hands of men of superior physical strength. 
The malicious appellor was the man who had comparatively little or 
nothing to lose, and who could by this means inflict damage and 
annoyance, so that in 1285, by the Statute of Westminster the Second 
(c. 12), malicious appeal was made punishable by a year's imprisonment. 
This penalty had no terrors for those already in custody and who were 
induced or compelled, * for the saving of their lives and by means of 
divers oppressions and pains which sheriffs and gaolers, in whose custody 
they are, do cause to them, to approve (appeler) the most rich persons 
of the county,' the object being by arrest and incarceration of the 
appellees to extort money from them.^ The remedy devised was that 
the appellee should be admitted to mainprise without fees. But the 
mischief continued, and in 1826 an action agtdnst the sheriffs and 
gaolers was granted, to be tried in the King's Courts.^ This being 
found ineffective as a deterrent, the offence of the coercive manu- 
facture of appeals was in 1340 made capital against gaolers so acting/ 
The Crown now reUed on the sheriffs to check these abuses of legal 
procedure for the gratification of private animosities. In 1410 
an Act was passed which perhaps discloses the sequel of the Earl of 
Northumberland's unsuccessful rising in the North in February 1408. 
It has already been mentioned that inquests originating presentments 
of ' fama publica ' were intended to be by the freeholders and 
villains of the neighbourhood. These presentments, in the case 
of felonies, were returned by the sheriffs to the justices in 

» * Hist. Crim. Law/ i. 273. • 1 Ed. 8. st. 1, o. 7. 

^ lb. * I omit the Acts against indictments of 

* * Hist. Eng. Law,* ii. 646. judges of Spiritual Courts, these referring 

* Braoton, f. 141 : * Item nullum appel- to the conflicts of jurisdiction between 
lum, nisi fiat mentio de felonia facta.^ Church and Crown. See 18 Ed. 3, st 3, 
' ' " Ordinances of 1811, * Statutes of the c. 6 (1844) ; 1 Bio. 2, o. 18. 

Realm,* i. 165. 



CIV COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

eyre.^ Political animosity apparently suggested the abuse of the inquest 
for the ruin of opponents.^ Packed juries were impanelled without 
any return of them by the sheriffs. These juries made at Westminster 
presentments upon information laid against a considerable number of 
persons. The judicial process which followed the indictment does not 
appear. But the statute passed to suppress the practice uses language 
wluch suggests that the justices treated the indictment as equivalent 
to a conviction.^ Of the accused, ' ascuns f urent utlagez devant les 
ditz justices de record & ascuns fuez al Seintwarie pour treson & ascuns 
pour felonie.' The indictments were annulled by Act of Parliament,^ 
and it was forbidden to the sheriffs to accept lists of panels from 
persons other than their own officers. They were also commanded 
to return all panels of inquests to the justices as a guarantee of 
their bona fide character. All irregular indictments were declared 
null and void. 

But the pertinacity of the malicious prosecutor was not easily 
baulked. The next device was to procure the indictment of persons 
in conformity with legal process for felonies supposed to have been 
committed at a non-existent place. It is clear that at this date (1419), 
and perhaps in 1410, though it is rash to draw an inference where 
even the form of law was disregarded for the satisfaction of political 
vengeance, the presenting jury had ceased to represent personal 
knowledge of the facts. At first this new form of malicious indictment 
appeared in Lancashire, a straggling county in which, the northern 
being cut off from the southern portion by the bay of Morecambe, a 
jury at either end might well be ignorant of the topography of the 
other. The object, as recited by the statute passed in 1419 for its 
suppression,^ was not only to cause annoyance and expense, but to 
obtain an opportunity of waylaying the defendants on their road to 
answer the charge. The defendants, being thereby terrified, entered 
no appearance to the indictment, upon which a writ of Exigent was 
directed to the county court, that is, they were summoned at five 
successive county courts to * come in to the king's peace ' or in 
default to be outlawed. It does not appear from the Act nor from 
the petition of the Commons on which it is founded ^ why a non- 
existent place should be the venue laid by the offenders. The 

^ See P. and M. • Hist, of Eng. Law/ See P. and M. * Hist. Eng. Law/ ii. 649. 

i. 546. It may, however, be that the flight to 

' Li 1397 the Despensers had been im- sanctuary was ' on indictment found and 

peached for procuring false indictments, before triaL 
Bot Pari. iii. 364. ' 11 Hen. 4, c. 9. 

' This was the practice in the case of * 7 Hen. 5, o. 1. 

minor offences in &e thirteenth century. ' Rot. Pari. iy. 120. 



INTRODUCTION cv 

solution of this may perhaps be sought in the procedure upon the 
writ of Exigent. The county court had no jurisdiction outside 
the county. An Exigent would therefore only issue in respect 
of a case arising in the county, which place it was necessary to 
specify. But if an existing place in the county were designated, 
it would become the duty of the sheriff to summon the inquest, 
that is, the men of the neighbourhood. There being no such place 
discoverable in the county as that designated, it was presumably 
open to the sheriff to summon an inquest in any part of the county 
and to proceed by Exigent in the county court upon the non- 
appearance of the defendant. Had the place been one in existence 
in the county, ' fama publica,' as affirmed by the hundredors &c., 
would have caused the indictment to fail. The offenders were made 
punishable by imprisonment, fine, and ransom at the discretion of the 
justices. 

In order to check this practice in Lancashire it was provided by 
the statute of 1419 ' that before award of Exigent there should be an 
inquest held by a jury of twelve freeholders to determine whether the 
place in which the venue was laid had, in fact, any existence.' That 
the statute was intended to repress the rancour of the Yorkists may 
be inferred from two complementary Acts passed in 1421 (9 Hen. 5, 
st. 1, cc. 1, 2). By the first of these the Act of 1419 was extended to 
all England, and the persons maliciously indicted were granted writs 
of conspiracy and a right to damages. By the second it was provided 
that the defendants' outlawries, even though good in Lancashire, 
should not be operative in other counties whereby to forfeit their 
lands and goods elsewhere. An appearance of impartiality is main- 
tained by the provision that this benefit should inure as well to 
defendants in a suit by the King as in a suit of a party in the county 
of Lancaster. But there is one significant exception. The county of 
Chester was a centre of disaffection to the Lancastrian dynasty.^ In 
1899 Henry 4 had passed a penal statute against it, enablmg the 
officers of other counties in which offences had been committed by its 
inhabitants to follow the offender into Cheshire. For such offences 
committed elsewhere, even when of no greater gravity 'than battery or 
other trespass,' the goods and chattels of the offender in Cheshire 
were forfeited as well as those in the counties in which the offence 
was committed and elsewhere. Wherfe the offence was a felony 
forfeiture of lands in all counties was also incurred (1 Hen. 4, c. 18). 

■ Sir J. H. Bamsay, * Lancaster and York ' (1892), i. 59. 



CVl COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

This exceptional severity was expressly confirmed by 9 Hen. 5, c. 2 
(1421). The confirmatory Act was, however, provisional, being limited 
to ' the Parliament which shall be first holden after the king's return 
into England from beyond the sea.' This limitation became a vexata 
quaatio among the lawyers. Henry 5 left England on June 10, 
1421, never to return alive, and died on August 31, 1422. His body 
was, indeed, conveyed to England in the following November ; but it 
was argued that the statute contemplated that the King would return 
alive, and that the limitation, being based upon a condition which 
could not be fulfilled, was null and the Act therefore perpetual. That 
this opinion prevailed may be inferred from the fact that it was not 
until 1439 that the Act was made perpetual,^ the preamble reciting 
that it ' by opinion of some is expired and by the opinion of some 
not expired ' (18 Hen. 6, c. 13). 

It has been seen that in 1410 the ingenuity of the malicious 
indicter had contrived to dispense with the sheriff, the royal official 
whose duty it was to preserve legal process from the taint of cor- 
ruption and partiaUty. The Act of that year had made the return 
of the jury of inquest by the sheriff indispensable to the legality of 
indictments. But the packing of juries for the presentment of 
malicious indictments before the King's Bench still flourished in 1489, 
when another statute was directed against it. The practice was for 
a capias ad respondendum to issue to the sheriff of Middlesex, 
returnable within two or four days. The person indicted, being 
presumably at a distance, failing to appear, an Exigent was awarded 
by which his goods and chattels were forfeited. To prevent this 
travesty of justice it was enacted in 1427 that ' writs of capias shall 
be directed, as well to the sheriff or sheriffs of the county wherein 
they be indicted as to the sheriff or sheriffs of the county whereof 
they be named in the indictment.' An interval of six weeks was then 
allowed before the return of the writ within which the person indicted 
could appear (6 Hen. 6, c. 1). Curiously enough, though the 
preamble of the Act complains of ' suspect jurors, hired and procured 
to the same by confederacy and covin,' it makes no direct attempt to 
purge the panel. The interval, being found too short, was extended 
in 1429 to a minimum of three months after the issue of the Capias 
to the sheriff of the county in which the defendant dwelt. An action 

* Subject to aD obscure qualification which it shall seem to the king and the 

* to endure till the next parliament and so lords of the parliament at this (y. 1. saidc 

forth for ever ; if so be that betwixt this now) time that it shall not be expedient 

and the same next parliament no such in- this ordinance to endure longer after the 

oonvenienoe happen in this behfjf, for the same next Parliament.' 



INTRODUCTION CVll 

on the case, with treble damages against the procurer of the malicious 
indictment, was given to the person aggrieved (8 Hen. 6, c. 10). 

The paralysis of sovereign authority during the Wars of the Boses 
once more disclosed itself in the lawless proceedings of the sheriffs. 
Indictments were * aflSrmed by jurors having no conscience, nor any 
freehold and little goods,' as well as by the servants and bailiffs of 
the sheriffs themselves, in the Sheriffs' Tourns. These indictments 
found, the defendants were arrested and imprisoned by the sheriffs 
for purposes of extortion. * After which fines, ransoms, and amercia- 
ments so rated and revised by the said sheriffs, under sheriffs, clerks, 
bailiffs and their ministers, the people aforesaid be inlarged out of 
prison and the said indictments and presentments be imbeziled and 
withdrawn.' ^ By the Act passed in 1461, immediately after the re- 
storation of peace by the accession of Edward 4, sheriffs were 
ordered to deliver to justices of the peace in sessions indictments 
taken in their tourn. The justices then awarded process, levied 
fines, &c. A sheriff arresting or fining persons without process from 
the sessions was punishable by a fine of lOOZ.* The other branch of 
the evil complained of in the last statute was assailed by an Act passed 
by Bichard 3 in 1484, a qualification of freehold of the annual value 
of 20s., a copyhold of the annual value of 26^. 8d. ' over all charges at 
the leste ' being fixed for jurors in sheriffs' tourns.' The raising of the 
independence of jurors must have done something to check the perse- 
cution of political opponents, as well as to limit the powers for mischief 
of the rural magnates. The want of success which attended the alleged 
malicious indictments of Sir Bobert Harecourt was therefore in some 
degree attributable to the care with which successive statutes had 
hampered the employment of this formidable weapon. 

The riotous disposition of the country gentry is further illustrated Abbot &o. of 
by the case of the Abbot and Convent of Byland, Yorkshire, against Warooppi. 
Warcoppe (p. 253), which also contains a curious instance of the 
grasping policy of Henry 7, and of the manner in which the 
religious houses were exploited by influential laymen. It appears 
from the petition that at some time between November 1, 1494, when 
Prince Henry, afterwards Henry 8, was created Duke of York, 
and February 18, 1503, when he was created Prince of Wales, 
Henry 7 wrote, presumably on the occasion of a vacancy, request- 
ing the abbot to nominate Prince Henry steward of the abbey lands 
in Yorkshire. It was not uncommon for stewards to be persons of 

> 1 Ed. 4, c. 2 (1461). « lb. » 1 Rio. 3, c. 4. 



CVIU COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

position. Sir Richard Sutton, a member of the King's Council at 
this time, and a ' governor ' of the Inner Temple, was steward of the 
monastery of Sion.^ Even peers held the office, as Thomas West, 
ninth Baron de La Warr, who was steward of the house of Bruton, 
Somerset (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, vii. 1513). But de La Warr had 
been a member of Gray's Lin, and was therefore qualified for a post 
the holder of which was constantly called upon to adjudicate points 
of law and custom. That a prince of the blood should enjoy the 
office and its revenues was obviously an abuse, since he could only 
perform the duty by deputy. This deputy. Sir Richard Cholmeley, 
was also nominated by the King, probably on payment of a fine. The 
abbot and brethren, of course, capitulated. The result was this suit, 
the King having nominated Sir Richard Cholmeley and the Prince 
Robert Warcoppe of Warcoppe as deputy. It appears from the plaint 
that the Prince had only been appointed steward of the lands of the 
monastery in Yorkshire. Warcoppe's proceedings were all confined to 
Westmoreland, and there does not seem to have been any collision 
between him and Cholmeley. If the plaint were correct clearly 
Warcoppe could have had no locus standi. Warcoppe pleads that he 
was deputed both by the King and the Prince. 

Warcoppe had already appeared before the Star Chamber in 1500 
to answer in proceedings arising out of a fray between himself 
and the servants of his neighbour, Sir Edward Musgrave.^ In this 
case he also assumed the part of representative of the Abbey of 
Byland, being, as he asserted, lessee to the abbey of the lordship and 
manor of Blatarne for life. To that case the abbot was not a party ; 
but he presumably contested the claim, for in Trinity Term, that 
is, between June 9 and 80, 1507, an injunction was granted him 
by the Star Chamber against Warcoppe, who was prohibited from 
occupying the abbey lands in Blatarne.' Warcoppe disobeyed the 
injunction, but does not appear to have been punished for the 
contempt. He was only indicted for forcible entry in the King's Bench, 
and the land restored to the possession of the abbey. His retainers 
killed the plaintiff in the case heard before the Star Chamber 
in 1600, and he himself was indicted as accessory to the murder. 
These proceedings were apparently fruitless. The Court of Chancery 
then interfered, and Warcoppe was laid by the heels for refusing to 
find surety to keep the peace. After imprisonment * for a long space ' 
he was released, still obstinately refusing to find surety, and, according 

» See * Diet Nat. Biog.* sub Sutton, Sir Biohard. 

« See p. 106, infra. ■ P. 268, infra. 



INTRODUCTION CIX 

to the abbot, recommenced his depredations upon the monastic 
tenants. On this occasion he set up the plea of a delegated steward- 
ship of the abbey land and demanded trial by one of those jories of the 
county which seem already to have proved complaisant. 

Even among those bred to studious callings the disposition to prinoiMi 
violence is apparent. The case of the Principal and Fellows of Wtinn^.' 

_ - JohnaoD and 

Furnival's Inn against Johnson and others (p. 287) of the household othen. 
of the Bishop of Ely illustrates the practice as contrasted with the 
law respecting the bearing of arms. The general law was laid down 
by the Statute of Northampton (2 Ed. 8, c. 8) in 1828, which is in 
the first instance a prohibition to appear in arms before the King's 
justices. The Act continues : * Ne force mesner en aflfrai de la pees, 
ne de chivaucher ne daler arme, ne de nuit ne de jour, en faires, 
marchees, nen presence des justices* ne dautres Ministres ne nule part 
aillours, sur peine de perdre lour armures au Boi & de lour corps a la 
prisone a la volunte le Boi.' It is certain that the general prohibition 
was not observed. But that the prohibition to carry arms in the 
presence of the justices was very severely enforced we know from Sir 
Thomas Figett's case in 24 Ed. 8, where a knight, having been 
menaced with assassination, wore defensive armour under his 
clothes.^ The statutes against carrying arms having fallen into 
desuetude, a confirmatory Act was passed in 1897 (20 Bic. 2, c. 1) 
ordering their enforcement and enacting ' que null seigneur Ghivaler 
nautre petit ne graunt aile ne chivache par noet ne jours armez/ 
except the King's officers. Nevertheless the judges adopted a liberal 
interpretation of the statute, holding that ' in some case a man may 
not only use force and arms, but assemble company also ; as any 
may assemble his friends and neighbours to keep his house against 
those that come to rob or kill him or to o£fer him violence in it and 
is by construction excepted out of this Act.' ' Coke also quotes with 
approval a line ' Armaque in armatos sumere jura sinunt.' Obviously 
these interpretations left the door open for exploits like those of the 
gentlemen of Furnival's Inn and their neighbours of the Bishop of 
Ely's household. The City of London therefore, in 1868, sought to 
strengthen the statutory prohibition by ordinances of its own. No 
one was to wander about the city or the suburbs after curfew. But 
as there were exceptions in favour of ' a man known to be of good 
repute or his servant for some good cause,' the prohibition could not 

* Tear Book, 24 Ed. 8, fo. 33 ; £. Coke, 2 Inst. (ed. 1797), p. 161. 
> 8£d. 8,303, 305; Coke, l.c. 



ex COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

have been very stringently enforced. * Item, that no one, of whatever 
condition he be, go armed in the said city or in the suburbs, or carry 
arms day or night,' and that * no person draw sword or knife or other 
arm ' under penalty of forfeiture of the arms J Possibly it is with this 
ordinance in view that the bishop's servants pleaded that at the time 
of the aflEray they were within his franchise.^ A proviso to the 
ordinance against going armed in favour of ' the vadlets of the great 
lords of the land, carrying the swords of their masters in their 
presence,* of the serjeants-at-arms in attendance on royalty, and of 
' the officers of the city and such persons as shall come in their 
company ' &c., shews that at this time swords were not allowed as 
articles of apparel.^ 

Affrays by the young gentlemen of the Inns were not uncommon. 
' The thirteenth day of Aprill 36 Henry 6 (1458) there was a great 
fray in Fletestreete, betweene men of court and the inhabitants of the 
same streete, in which fray the Queenes atturney was slaine. For 
this feate, the king committed che principall governors of Furnivals, 
Cliffords and Barnardes Inne to prison in the Castle of Hertford, and 
William Tailor, alderman of that ward, with many other, were sent 
to Windsor Castle the seventh of May.' ^ In one of the Lansd. MSS. 
(MS. 689) containing Star Chamber cases, temp. Henry 8, is an entry 
' 5 May 8 H. 8 (1517). The Ancients of the Inns of Court being 
present. It was advised that they should not suffer the gentlemen 
students to be out of their houses after six o'clock at night without 
very great and necessary causes, nor to wear any manner of weapon.' ^ 
' Hudson tells us that in the times of Henry 7 and Henry 8 ' sometimes 
men were bound (by the Star Chamber) to wear no weapons.' ^ 
' The Star Chamber was wont to keep an eye on the Inns of Court,' ^ 
to which may be added and of Chancery. 

Kebeuv. The Spirit of lawless violence was not content with the satisfaction 

^°°' derivable from affrays. Abduction or 'ravishment of women,' as 
distinct from the ravishment of wards,^ was an offence known from 
early times. It was peculiarly an aristocratic offence, since its object 
was wealth and its accomplishment required a force sufficient to 
overawe constables and other local authorities. When, therefore, in 

» H. T. Riley, • Liber Albus ' (1861), p. 46. 
pp. 384, 835. • • Of the Court of Star Chamber,' p. 

> See p. 241, n. 5, infra. 193. 

> See farther H. T. Biley, * London and ' Scofield, p. 56, n. 3. 

London Life,' 1276-1419, p. 268. "See Pollock and Maitland, 'Hist. 

* J. Stow, * Chronicle ' (ed. 1631), p. 404. Eng. Law,' ii. 363 Ac. 

* J. S. Bum. ♦ The Star Chamber ' (1870). 



INTRODUCTION CXI 

1847 the GommonB complained to Edward 3 of its frequency, and of 
the pardons granted to the perpetrators, they only received the vague 
assurance that such should not issue otherwise than conformably to 
the honour and profit of the King and his people.^ Where a woman 
being a tenant of a manor held of the Crown was abducted and 
married by force, the Crown seized the lands which by virtue of the 
marriage would have become the husband's.^ This custom probably 
suggested the stringent provisions for the suppression of the practice 
enacted by Parliament in 1882. The petition of the Commons com- 
plained that the victims were the daughters of noblemen and gentle- 
men,^ and that the law was ineffective because after the consummation 
of the offence the injured women refused to prosecute. Under these 
circumstances this easy way of procuring wealth was unchecked by any 
deterrent. The Act 6 Eic. 2, st. 1, c. 6 therefore provided that where 
after rape the woman consented both parties should be disabled to take 
by inheritance dower or jointure. There was, however, a proviso 
which in this case made the Act inapplicable. It was necessary first to 
prosecute the ravisher to conviction. The proceedings taken against 
him in Eebell v. Vernon (p. 130), as we shall see, proved abortive. 
Further, the Act only applied where the woman consented, which was 
not, except by construction, the case here. Lastly, there was a 
saving to lords of ' all their escheats of the said ravishers * arising 
from the custom already mentioned. It is possible that in this case 
the escheats, if any there were, fell to the father of the ravisher. 
Nevertheless the Act proved to some degree effective, so that after 
two years' experience the Commons in 1384 successfully petitioned 
that it might remain in force.^ The offence was excepted from the 
general pardon of 1387,'* and in reply to a petition of the Commons 
was in 1889 declared excepted from aU general pardons.^ In 1429, 
during the minority of Henry 6, the Lords of the Council of Regency 
drew up a series of articles which they solemnly swore to observe. 
Among these was an undertaking neither to 'wittyngly receive, 
cheryssh, hold in houshold, ne mayntene pillours, robbours, oppres- 
Bours of the poeple, mansleers, felons, outelawes, ravyshours of 
wymen ayens the lawe, unlaweful hunters of foreste, parks or warennes 
or any other opyn Mysdoers, or any opynly named or famed for 
swyche, til his Innocence be declared.* ' A few years later, in 1436, 

» Bot. Pari. ii. 172, a. * Rot. Pari. iu. 174, b. 

» lb. 176, b ; 208, a. * lb. 248, a. 

' In Cheshire, Herefordshire, and the * lb. 268, a ; cp. 544, a, b (1404). 

Marohes of Wales the offence was espe- ' lb. iv. 344, a. 
eially prevalent. 2 Bic. 2, st. 1, c. 6, 



cxii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Parliament, in a private Act, took a step which looks like an infiinge- 
ment of the ecclesiastical jurisdiction over matters matrimonial. A 
widow named Isabel Botiller, living at Burton Wood, in Lancashire, 
was forcibly abducted by one William Pulle, very much in the fashion 
of the present case. She was dragged into a church, and a priest 
said the marriage service over her, though she refused to make the 
responses. The abductor consummated the alleged marriage. It 
does not appear that the Ecclesiastical Court intervened to set it aside. 
Nevertheless Parliament, in derogation of the accepted doctrine that 
man and wife are one flesh, passed a special Act allowing the injured 
woman an appeal of felony against her husband.^ A like Act was 
passed in a like case three years later (1489).^ These Acts and the 
penalties of that of 1882 appear to have led to some change in the 
methods of these offenders. An Act of 1468 (81 Hen. 6, c. 9) com- 
plains of the new inventions ('novelx invencions') devised for 
effecting the main purpose of the crime, viz. the enjojrment of the goods 
of the ravished women. The method was to get possession by force 
or fraud of their persons and ' not suffer them to go at large and be 
at their liberty until they will bind themselves to the said offenders or 
other person or persons to their use in great sums by obligations ' of 
various kinds. As a remedy for this, power was given to the injured 
person to sue a writ out of Chancery, and to the Chancellor to 
nullify obligations so extorted. The ingenuity of these malefactors 
being thus baffled, resort was again had to the more primitive 
method of forcible marriage or extortion by abduction, duress, and 
violence. 

The difficulties obviously incident to the enforcement of the 
statute of 1882 were swept aside by the extensive range of the Act for 
the repression of this crime passed by Parliament in 1487. Its title 
is * An Acte agaynst taking awaye of Women agaynst theire Willes ' 
(8 Hen. 7, c. 2). The Act was confined to cases of women with 
lands, tenements, or personalty, the possession of which was the 
object of the crime. Not only the takers of the woman, but the 
procurers and abetters of the felony and the receivers of the woman 
were ' all adjudged as principal felons ; the hke whereof we finde not 
in any other statute that we remember.' ^ Receivers of the misdoers 
only, but not of the woman, were by construction of the Act held to be 
accessaries. 

Under this statute the defendant, William Vernon, as well as Roger 
Vernon, was capitally liable. As appears from a report of subsequent 
proceedings, mentioned below, they were put on their trial at the 

» Rot. Pari. iv. 498, a. ^ n,^ ^ 14^ j,, 16, a, b. » E. Coke, 3 Inst. 61. 



INTRODTJCTION CXIU 

assizes at Derby, presumably in the summer of 1502. In Derbyshire, 
as may be imagined, it was hopeless to expect a successful prosecution 
of a Vernon on a charge of this nature. The defendants were ac- 
quitted. The plaintiff, Margaret Kebell, then brought her wrongs 
before the Star Chamber, a Court which claimed no jurisdiction 
empowering it to inflict death.^ It is to be observed that the proceed- 
ings in the Star Chamber appear to be taken, not against the chief 
culprit, Roger Vernon, but against his uncle, William Vernon. They 
began in the summer of 1502, and the latest date indorsed upon these 
papers is November 4, 1504. In Trinity Term of that year the case 
came into the Common Law Courts. Margaret sued her husband in 
the Common Pleas in trespass for damages. From this it may be 
inferred that the Parliamentary precedents already cited had been 
judicially extended to this class of cases. The case is reported in 
B. Eeilwey, ' Beports d'ascuns cases ' &c., ed. 1688, p. 62, d. The 
case for the plaintiff was that the defendant at the church of D(erby) 
within the same county took the plaintiff to wife, and that the 
plaintiff was forced into the marriage by menaces and duress of 
imprisonment, against the will of the plaintiff, in another county. 
Among the questions discussed was whether the marriage was void- 
able for duress or not. Frowike, J., was of opinion that it was. 
Demurrer was entered to the declaration that it did not allege menace 
in the county where the marriage took place, 'en quel case les 
espousels serra prise de bon conge & assent del feme al temps del 
espousels.' The point was argued at length and eventually decided in 
favour of the defendant. As he had not been convicted of ravishment, 
the Act of 1882 did not apply to his case. The defendant retorted by 
bringing an action for conspiracy against £. Eeble and various 
other persons. From the report of this case, heard in Michaelmas 
Term, 20 Hen. 7 (1505), and Hilary Term, 21 Hen. 7 (1506), in the 
King's Bench, we glean further particulars.* It appears that no fewer 
than a hundred armed men escorted Margaret Eebell to Derby, 
presumably from Leicestershire (* a tiel ville en auter county '). They 
were pursued by E. Keble with forty persons ' modo guerrino arraiati 
chivauchants.' As has been seen, these were unable to effect a rescue. 
£. Eeble and the other defendants then procured an indictment of 
the plaintiffs, who, though unnamed, must be taken to be the Vernons, 
at the assizes at Derby, where they were tried and acquitted. The 
Vernons, however, failed in their action for conspiracy, the judges 

■ E. Coke, 3 Inst. 66. o. 21. Conspiracy : Keilwey's ' Beport, 

« Y. B. M. T. 20 Hen. 7 (ed. 1679), f. 11, p. 81, d. 

g2 



fk»r 
Karl 



CXIV COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

holding that the appearance of the plaintififs riding in armour was a 
just cause for suspicion and justified their procurement of the indict- 
ment.^ It is abundantly clear, therefore, that Margaret Kebell 
remained irreconcilable. 

What the decree of the Star Chamber against William Vernon 
was remains unknown, but a record exists which indicates the penalty 
paid by Sir Henry Vernon for his part in the aflfair. There is printed 
in J. S. Burn, ' Notices of the Court of Star Chamber ' (1870), pp.'82- 
86, ' A list of monies received by Edmund Dudley for the king from 
the 20th to the 23rd Hen. 7.' Among these occurs at the date 
July 14 22 Hen. 7 (1507), ' For the pardon of Sir Henry Vernon 
900 lib.' 

Jlf^ An instance of legalised duress is the case of Goryng v. the Earl 

^liidT" of Northumberland (pp. 95-105), which also illustrates the rights 
attaching to guardianship in chivalry. At some time between 1499 
and 1502, probably in 1500, one John Goryng, then approaching the 
age of twenty-one years, was legal owner by the death of his grand- 
father, also John Goryng, of considerable estates in the county of Sussex. 
Henry Algernon Percy, the fifth Earl of Northumberland, having been 
born on January 13, 1498, had recently come of age.^ He claimed 
guardianship of Goryng in respect of certain lands within the honour 
of Petworth alleged to be held of the earl in chivalry. John Goryng, 
the grandfather, appears to have died in 1495, having outlived his son, 
who also bore the same name. In the interval it may be presumed 
that John Gorjng, the grandson, was living with his relations. The 
young earl, doubtless ambitious to exercise his power, began by seizing 
John Goryng, the minor, and practically imprisoning him in his 
London house in St. Martin's-le-Grand. His excuse was that there 
were other claimants to the guardianship, who doubtless began to 
assert their claims upon hearing of the earl's action. Assuming the 
earl to have had the right to the guardianship he seems to have 
unquestionably been entitled to take possession of the body of the 
ward, for with it went the right of giving or, in effect, selling the 
ward in marriage -a valuable property the prospective loss of which 
had probably stirred the other claimants to assert themselves.^ Such 
a competition was familiar enough to have brought into existence a 
general rule of law, laid down by Bracton and aflBrmed by statute, 

' For a further decision to this effect ^ De Fonblanque, ' Annals of the House 

in a parallel case see Coke's Bep. XII. of Percy ' (1887), i. 310. 
23. » Bracton, f. 87. 



INTRODUCTION CXV 

that, where a number of persons claimed guardianship and marriage, 
the marriage belonged to the lord from whom was derived the most 
ancient of the titles by which the ward held any of his lands.* So 
far as the lands were concerned the guardianship of them belonged 
to the respective lords.'* The earl, therefore, was insuring himself 
against the loss of his property. His right is not seriously questioned 
by the petitioner. The very definition of guardianship in chivalry, 
given by Littleton (§ 116), is seisin of the wardship and of the lands 
and of the heir. Indeed, there is ground for suspicion that the right 
was curtailed of some of its ancient amplitude, for Bracton asserts 
that * the lords may take into their own hands the land together with 
the heir (of full age) in possession,' apparently till the fulness of age 
be proved. Naturally the exercise of this right provoked violent 
resistance, which Glanvill appears to condone if the heirs are willing 
to render their feudal dues.^ It is noticeable that Bracton in the 
corresponding passage * omits consideration of these forcible proceed- 
ings altogether. 

The right of marriage was originally confined to the marriage of 
female wards, on the ground that a lord ought not to be compelled to 
admit an enemy as tenant.^ But a strained interpretation of c. vi. 
of Magna Carta, ' hsBredes maritentur absque disparagatione,' by 
which * hsBredes ' was intended female, was applied to male wards. 
This claim was made statute law by the Statute of Merton (c. 6) in 
1236. 

The earl, the petitioner alleged, confined him without access of his 
friends unless in presence of the earl's servants. In an age when the 
powers of parents and masters were indefinite it was not to be 
expected that the duties of guardians in chivalry should be very 
clearly stated. But it was implied in the nature of the relation 
that the ward should be brought up to perform the duties of his 
station, and the application of the Great Charter's proviso * absque 
disparagatione ' by the Statute of Merton indicates the drift of 
public opinion. On the other hand, the earl by the Statute of West- 
minster the Second (1285) might reclaim a ward who had escaped to 
the custody of others, and he could therefore presumably secure himself 
against the escape. A more tenable count of the complaint is that 
the earl has entered into the petitioner's lands, ' takyn the Rentes of 
his Farmours and hathe seased and takyn parte of his goodes to his 

' Bracton, ib. ; also Statute of Westminster ^ Glanvill, vii., o. iz. 

the Second, c. xvi. * F. 86, a. 

' Bracton, ib. * Glanvill, vii. 12. 



Cxvi COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

grete enpouerysshement.' ^ The petitioner suggests rather than alleges 
' waste/ Entry upon the lands was undoubtedly legal. The receipt 
of rents was legal. ' Plenam itaque custodiam habent domini filiorum 
et hsBredum hominum suorum et feodorum suorum, ita quod plenam 
inde habent dispositionem.' ^ The guardian was bound to restore to 
the heir his inheritance in good condition and freed from debts ; ^ but 
he could take the profits of the estates and provide suitable main- 
tenance thereout for the ward.* In the case of waste actually com- 
mitted by a guardian there were two processes. There was an action 
for waste and an action for account of waste. Coke asserts ^ that by 
the Common Law an action of waste lay as well against a guardian in 
socage as against a guardian in chivalry, and this appears to agree 
with Glanvill.^ By Magna Carta, c. 4, forfeiture of the guardianship 
was the penalty inflicted. Coke founds his proposition that an action 
of waste lies against the guardian in socage upon the fact that ' the 
action of waste is generall ; fecit vastum de terris &c. quas habet vel 
habuit in custodia de hsereditate predicta, which writ doth extend as 
well to the gardein in socage as in chivalry.' ^ Fitzherbert also says 
' Iheire deinz age auera bref de Wast vers le gardein en socage.^ ' 
But Sir Matthew Hale, C.J., commenting on another passage of 
Fitzherbert, that * Iheire auera accompt de Wast vers le gardein 
cybien al pleine age come deins age,* ® says : ' Waste does not lie 
against guardian in socage, but only account or trespass, according 
to the nature of the waste,' citing Y. B. 16 Ed. 3, Waste, 100. 
In this case the defendant, a woman, held as guardian in socage 
'by reason of nurture' (*pur resoun de nurture'), and after long 
argument it was decided that a writ of Waste did not lie. This 
was in 1342. Clearly, then, a change in the law had taken place 
between 1342 and 1534, when the first edition of the ^ Novel Natura 
Brevium ' appeared. 

The defeated defendant guardian in chivalry in an action for 
waste suffered three punishments. 1. He lost the custody of the heir 
and his lands. 2. He incurred damages to the amount of the 
waste. 3. He made fine to the King. This was the concurrent 
effect of the Statute of Gloucester (1278), c. 5, and Magna Carta, c. 4.^" 
Perhaps the third penalty contains the key to the exclusion of the 

» P. 97, infra. » Coke, 1.8.o. 

« GlanviU, vii. 9. • * Nat. Brev.' (ed. 1616), p. 69, d. 

' Glanvill, ib. * 'New Natura Brevium,' with comnien- 

* GlanvOl, ib. ; Bracton, f. 87. tary by L. C. J. Hale (1794), i. 59. 

* 2 Inst 305. >o See Coke, 2 Inst. 300. 

* vu. 9, 10. 



INTRODUCTION cxvii 

heir in socage from the action, that the King was only prejudiced 
where the waste was committed on land held by knight service. The 
Provisions of Westminster (1259), by which an account was granted 
to an heir in socage where the land was held ' in custodia parentum 
heredis/ ^ are apparently an extension to him of a right which brought 
him effective redress without involving the guardian in socage in 
the penalties attaching to corresponding misfeasance on the part of a 
guardian in chivalry. The language is repeated in the seventeenth 
section of the conlBrmatory Statute of Marlborough (1267). It is not 
at once apparent why kinsfolk (parentes) were specified. The form of 
the Provision shews that they were not necessarily guardians. The rule 
was, in the case of tenants in socage, that the mother's kinsfolk were 
the guardians where the inheritance came from the father, and the 
father's where it was derived from the mother.^ But Pollock and 
Maitland ^ give examples in which guardianship over socage tenants 
was claimed by lords, especially by ecclesiastical lords. Was the con- 
cession to socage tenants of a right to an account against their 
kinsfolk guardians confined to such guardians in the interest of the 
magnates, at that time in the plenitude of their power, but con- 
senting to yield so much to a growing public opinion ? Coke in his 
Commentary on the Statute of Marlborough (2 Inst. 185) takes no 
notice of the point. 

The petitioner, John Goryng, had, therefore, a legal ground of com- 
plaint so far as the seizure of his goods was, as alleged, an ' impover- 
ishment.' At the close of his replication (p. 105) he alleges that 
two of his tenants had, in consequence of the earl's high-handed 
usage of them, abandoned their farms. This is a further allegation 
of waste, specifically known as * exilium,' the * exile of men to the 
disherison of him in the reversion or remainder.' * 

According to the aggrieved petitioner he had offered to find bail 
for his surrender in case the three persons nominated by the earl to 
inquire into the conflict of claims should decide in the earl's favour. 
To this the earl replied that his counsel assured him they had never 
read or heard of a precedent. Indeed, if the theory of guardianship 
in chivalry, that it was the training of the ward under the eye of the 

' § 12 ; see Stubbs, * Select Charters.' ward * because he hath no lands by descent 

' Bracton, f. 87, b ; Littleton, § 123. holden by knight service, but only by 

Queen Elizabeth, widow of Edward 4, in socage.' Life of Edward 5, by Sir Thomas 

resisting the removal of the two princes, More, in * Complete History of England ' 

her sons, from sanctuary, is stated by Sir (2nd ed. 1719), p. 490. 
Thomas More to have advanced the in- ' * Hist Eng. Law,' i. 301-2. 

genious argument that Edward 6 was her * See Coke upon Littleton, 58, a, b. 



CXVIU COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

gaardian for certain public duties, be considered, the earl's refusal to 
entertain the proposal seems not unreasonable. In this case, in view 
of the existence of so many aspirants to the guardianship and the 
fact that the heir was unmarried, concession on the earl's part would 
have imperilled a valuable right. Kavishment of heirs was an offence 
sufficiently frequent in the thirteenth century to have provoked two 
statutes against it, the Statute of Merton, c. 6, and the Statute of 
Westminster the Second, c. 85 ; and the case of abduction last dis- 
cussed suggests that this class of proceeding had perhaps not altogether 
fallen out of date. It was the more probable here, as the conflicting 
claims were probably not advanced without some foundation in law. 
The petitioner, however, alleged that the earl's object in refusing his 
enlargement was to keep him in confinement until he came of age in 
the Michaelmas following the date of the petition, or until he had 
extorted a fine. Upon the attainment of the age of twenty-one by 
the tenant in chivalry he would, in the ordinary course, sue out his 
livery or ouster le main,^ that is, the restitution of his lands. But 
where he had been in wardship, he would not be liable to relief.^ 
The alleged demand was, therefore, presumably illegal. The alternative 
offence imputed by Goryng as designed by the earl, that of continuing 
in possession of his lands and himself, was not unknown to the law, 
and was provided against by the Statute of Marlborough, c. 16, on 
which Coke notes, * When a gardian in chivalrie holdeth over, he is 
an abator.' ^ The earl's justification for seizure of the goods, 
which appear to have been six oxen and a horse belonging to the 
plaintiff, was that they were due to him on the death of the grand- 
father as ' a mownter and a heryott ' in respect of eight portions of 
land held of him, presumably upon another and copyhold tenure (see 
p. 101, n. 14). That the earl believed his right to the guardianship to be 
valid may be inferred from the fact that he took the initiative in laying 
the case before two of the judges as arbitrators, with Sir Beginald 
Bray as umpire. Bray, soldier, statesman, judge, and architect, was 
the Admirable Crichton of his day. He was especially qualified for 
this task, being experienced in judicial work, both as a judge in the 
Court of Eequests and as High Steward of the University of Oxford. 
He was acquainted with the neighbourhood, being lord of the manor 
of Broadwater in West Sussex, which he had purchased from Sir 
WiUiam Radmyld, the petitioner's grandmother's brother.'* Further, 

■ Coke on Littleton, 77, a. * See Coke upon Littleton, 277, a. 

- lb. 83, b, where the exceptions to the * See Elwes and Bobinson, pp. 50, 266, 

general rule are set out. Goring pedigree. 



INTRODUCTION CXIX 

he enjoyed the reputation of being * a fervent lover of justice.' ^ The 
two judges, Wood and Tremaile, appear to have had no local con- 
nexion (see p. 99, nn. 7, 8). Facilities were given to the captive 
ward to employ counsel, but the petitioner's complaitit suggests 
that even at legal consultations the earl's servants intruded them- 
selves. Each party alleged against the other obstructive delays : the 
petitioner that the earl was deferring the hearing by the judges 
* tille the saide Sir Beynolde Bray be departed ' ; the earl, that the 
plaintiff had petitioned the King when he perceived that the two 
judges, after repeated hearings, were about to report to Bray in 
favour of the earl, with the intent to delay justice. The confidence 
evidently entertained in Bray by both parties is a testimony to the 
truth of Polydore Vergil's eulogy. The earl's answer to the insinua- 
tions of the plaintiff betrays much exasperation. There is, unfortu- 
nately, no record of the issue of the proceedings. But that the earl 
may have had substantial grounds for his claim is suggested by the 
inquisition post mortem of Sir William Goryng, the petitioner's son, in 
1554. The inquisition, as abbreviated by Dallaway, runs as follows : 
' Maner' de Burton una cum uno capitali messuagio cum advocatione 
de Burton et maner' de Cotes in Barlavington, Petworth, Sutton, 
Duncton, Woollavington & Bignor.' The manor of Burton came to 
John Goryng, the petitioner, by his marriage with Constance Dyke, 
heiress of the Dawtrey and St. John families.^ She also brought 
him the manor of Cotes in Barlavington.' Petworth was both an 
honour and a manor. Both were held by the Earl of Northumberland,^ 
and the honour included more than forty manors.'^ The earl held 
also the manors of Sutton and Duncton (ib.) and Woollavington.* 
Bignor was a park appendant to the Castle of Arundel, then held by 
the Fitzalans, but leased by the Goryngs from the Earls of North- 
umberland.^ Besides these John Goryng afterwards became lord of 
the manor of South Lancing through the death of his cousin, Sir 
William Badmyld, without issue in 1508.^ He was at the time of 
this suit, therefore, heir presumptive to that manor. South Lancing 

' Hall, * Chron.' ed. 1648, f . 56 b. Poly- to bring a criminal to justice (De Fon- 

dore Vergil speaks of him in the same blanqne, i. 319). 

way, and was perhaps the source from * J. Dallaway. 'Bape of Arundel' (ed. 

which Hall borrowed his delineation. E. Cartwright, 1832), 280. 

' Vere pater patriaB, homo severus, ac ita * Ib. 286, 286. 

recti amator ut si quid interdum peccatum * Ib. 301, n. e. 

esset, illud acriter in Henrico reprehen- ^ Ib. 

deret' ('Hist.' ed. A. Thysius, 1661, p. '^ Elwes and Bobinson, p. 32, n. 

> 774). At a later date, in 1607, we find the ' Ib. 

earl writing to solicit his influence in order ' Elwes, p. 138. 



CX^ COURT OF Tftt; STAtl CHAMfifiR 

was held of the lord of Bramber.^ This was probably the founda- 
tion of the claim to the guardianship advanced by Thomas, Earl of 
Surrey, as well as of that of Thomas West, Lord de La Warr, 
who had sold the castle and lordship to the earl on September 4, 
1494. Whether the guardianship passed would probably depend 
upon the terms of the conveyance. As John Goryng the father was 
at that date alive, the point was probably not considered, but semble 
that a conveyance of a lordship in fee would carry guardianship with 
it without special words. Littleton says (§ 116) : ' Gardian in right in 
chivalrie is where the lord by reason of his seigniory is seised of the 
wardshippe of the lands and of the heyre.' 

J{^|^ Among the forms of oppression occasionally practised by land- 

owners from early times were those connected with the levying of 
distress. In the case of Madeley v. Fitzherbert (pp. 54-69), as in that 
of the Abbot of Eynesham v. Harecourt, it was alleged that cattle, in 
the latter case sheep, had been injured or destroyed by being driven 
to distant pounds and there impounded. The defendant Fitzherbert, 
the alleged wrongdoer, justified his distress byafiSrming that the cattle 
were taken damage feasant. Even if the distress were legal, and the 
law allowed distress in such a case,^ the stock so distrained was not 
to be injured ; it was merely held as a pledge. But the possession 
of the power invited abuse. Against the particular abuse of which 
the defendant Fitzherbert was alleged to be guilty the law had 
endeavoured to give protection from early times. The Statute of 
Marlborough, c. 4 (1267), forbade cattle taken in distress to be driven 
out of the county.^ Great lords had extorted concessions by seizing 
cattle and impounding them in their own castles. By the Statute of 
Westminster the First, c. 17 (1275), power was given to the sheriff in 
such cases to compel restitution. In 1447 the Commons petitioned 
against diverse oppressions and extortions done * within the shires 
of Notyngham, Derby, Warwik, Stafford, Salop, Chester, Lancastre, 
Westmerland, Cumberland, Northumberland, and Yorkshyre by colour 
of taking of mennes catell under the name of distresse.' The cattle 
so taken were driven away, sold, or slaughtered, ' so that the owners 
of the seide catell may never come to have replevyn of them.' The 

^ Elwes, p. 138. ' * NnlluB de cetero duoere faciat dis- 

* * Dicere enim poterit captor quod iuste tricciones quas fecerit extra Comitatum in 

oepit aueria sua quia ilia invenit in damno quo fuerint. Et si vicinus hoc fecerit supra 

suo et seoundum legem et consuetudinem vicinum per voluntatem suam et sine judicio 

regni imparcauit iU& donee damnum ei puniatur . . . veluti de re contra paoem.' 

esset emendatum.* Bracton, f. 158. 52 Hen. 8, c. 4. 



rNTRODtJCTlON CXXl 

Commons asked therefore that the owners in such cases might have 
an action of trespass with triple damages and costs against both the 
takers and the receivers of cattle so taken. Although the proposed 
Act was to last during four years only, it was refused the royal assent.* 
The Parliament of 1450, elate with the overthrow of Suffolk, renewed 
this petition in part, confining their complaints to the ' shires & lord- 
shippes Eoialx in Walys and of the Duchie of Lancastre in the said 
parties.^ The offence was now declared to be felony, and an Act 
passed to that effect was to last for five years (28 Hen. 6, c. 4). 
Although the prohibition of the Statute of Marlborough against im- 
pounding distrained cattle out of the county was enforced, full advan- 
tage was taken of the opportunities of vexation allowed within the 
statute by driving such cattle to the extreme limits allowed by law.^ 

The other point of legal interest in the case is the statement that 
the defendant Fitzherbert had treated with contempt the injunction 
served upon him under the Privy Seal. The defendant is at pains to 
deny this and to explain his subsequent action. It is to be observed 
that these allegations of contempt of Court are not infrequent. It is 
the gravamen against the defendant in Idele v. the Abbot of St. £en- 
nettes Holme (p. 50). In the case of the Abbot of By land v, Warcoppe 
(p. 258) the defendant is silent as to this charge. In Treherne v. 
Harecourt, William Tytte, a yeoman who probably could not read, 
' dyd cast the seid writt (of sub poena) into the Strete ' and assaulted 
the messengers (p. 162). Even a decree of the Star Chamber was 
\ ridiculed by one of the bailiffs of Shrewsbury as * but a Skrewe of 
• paper and not to be obeyed ' (p. 191, cp. p. 205). In Burn's notes 
' from the Star Chamber MSS. in the British Museum is one dated 
May 29, 10 Hen. 7 (1495), * A subpoena issued for contempt in letting 
a Privy Seal to fall in the dirt.' ^ 

The pleadings in which the offence of contempt of Court is im- 
puted to Fitzherbert are so obscure that it is difficult to elicit from 
them an altogether satisfactory interpretation. Fitzherbert is charged 
with a contempt in proceeding against the plaintiff, John Madeley 
(who, he alleged, had disseised him), in an Assize of Novel Disseisin, 
after having been served with an injunction under the Privy Seal. 
Apparently Fitzherbert defends himself from the imputation of 

> * Bot Pari.* V. 189, b. the preamble reoiting that the statute was 

' lb. 200, a, b. passed ' for thavoidiiig of grievoQs veza- 

' The *Act touching thimpounding of tions, exaccions, troubles and disorder in 

Distresses * (1 & 2 P. and M. c. 12) was taking of Distresses and impoundyng of 

afterwards (1555) passed, prohibiting the cattle/ 

driving of such cattle beyond the limits of * J. S. Burn, ' The Star Chamber ' (1870), 

the hundred <&c. in which they were taken, p. 28. 



CXXU COUJRT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

contempt by saying that all he did after the service of the injunction 
was to suffer a recognitor to be sworn by way of afl&rming the array. 
This would be a waiver of the right to challenge the entire jury as having 
been unfairly impanelled, though not of the right of challenge to the 
polls. What the purpose of this proceeding may have been is not 
clear. To this defence Madeley replies that it is untrue, for that there 
was pleading before one of the assize was sworn. Fitzherbert rejoins 
that the reason was that the justices would not allow the array to be 
aflSrmed until there had been pleading to issue. There this contro- 
versy ends. 

orooyn «. The law touching advowsons and rights of presentation largely 

"°^ occupies the attention of Glanvill and Bracton. The wrongful pre- 
sentation of a clerk by a stranger, followed by admission and insti- 
tution, a frequent abuse in times when communication was slow and 
patrons were often engaged in warfare, not only deprived the patron 
of his presentation pro hac vice, but also, at common law, of 
the inheritance of the advowson altogether. The only remedy the 
patron then had was to bring a writ of right of advowson, analogous 
to the writ of right for a freehold, which was tried by battle or the 
grand assize.^ But by the Statute of Westminster the Second, c. 5 
(1286), six months' grace was allowed in such a case within which the 
patron might bring the possessory action of 'darrein presentment 
(ultimsB presentationis),' if he based his title on descent, or ' quare 
impedit,' if upon descent as well as if upon purchase. Failing his 
action within the six months, the true owner was left without remedy, 
it being conceived contrary to public policy to disturb the peace of the 
Church. The law so stood from 1285 till the time of Anne, when a 
statute (7 Anne, c. 18) was passed enacting that no usurpation should 
displace the estate or interest of the patron, but that upon the next 
avoidance the patron might present or maintain a ' quare impedit.' ' 
In the case of William Grocyn, the Master and the Brethren of the 
Collegiate Church of All Saints, Maidstone, against Sir Thomas 
Kempe (pp. 271-274), the plaintiffs allege, inter alia, an usurpation 
on the part of the defendant. Nothing is said in their petition as to 
the six months' grace allowed by statute, and they justify their pro- 
ceeding in the Star Chamber by the allegation that the influence 

* Olanvill, ii. 13 . * Ipse qui verus est ii. c. 5. 
patronus per nollum aliud breve reouperare ^ Blackstone, ' Comm.' bk. v., ch. viii. 

poterit advocationem suam quam per breve See also Coke on the Statute of Westminster 

de reoto quod habet terminare per duellum the Seoond, o. v., 2 Inst. 360, 861. 
vel per magnam assisam.' Stat. Westm. 



INTRODUCTION CXXlll 

exercised by the defendant will prevent them from obtaining a verdict 
in an action at Common Law. Upon the doctrine that the function of 
the Star Chamber was to render the law effective or to supply its 
omissions this was a proper and is a frequent plea.^ The Star Cham- 
ber would not have entertained a petition to set aside a statutory 
limitation. Its relation to the statute law is well expressed in Hud- 
son's phrase that 'jurisdiction seemeth to come to this court de incre- 
mento by (these) Acts of ParUament.' ^ 

A picture of the condition of the reUgious houses upon the eve carter v. 

ICslinosbiiry* 

of the Reformation is furnished by the case of Carter v. the Abbot Abbot of, 

and others 

of Malmesbury (pp. 118-129). The case has an additional interest in 
that it brings before us the legal and social incidents attached to a 
bondman's status. Malmesbury was a mitred Benedictine monastery 
of which the head enjoyed a seat among the spiritual peers. Of the 
twenty-seven mitred abbeys enumerated by Puller ' it ranked twenty- 
first in point of wealth, but its revenues were estimated at the 
handsome total of 808Z. a year. The house was evidently in the 
latter half of the fifteenth century, Uke that of Bath, a scene of waste, 
dissoluteness, and incapacity. From the fact that Abbot Aylie, as 
we see in the case of Culford v. Wotton, had provided for his natural 
son on the abbey estates, the morals of the rest of the community 
may be inferred. Despite its large income it was encumbered with 
debts, and appears to have failed to discharge its pecuniary obliga- 
, tions in the nature of annuities, corodies, and the like. ' So notorious 
was its anarchy that on November 27, 1476, the Crown interfered. 
It took possession of the abbey, its cells, manors, lands, and rents, and 
committed them to the custody of the Prior of Bath to be adminis- 
tered by him for five years. We have already had a glimpse into the 
methods of administration of the priors of Bath. Possibly the Crown 
was made acquainted with the injudiciousness of its selection ; more 
probably it became aware that by interfering with an exempt house * 
it was trenching upon Papal prerogative ; at any rate on Decem- 
ber 28 following a precept was issued to the Prior of Bath to stay 

* * I come to express the great and high p. 107. 
jarisdlction of this Court which, by &e ^ lb. p. 115. 

arm of sovereignty, punisheth errors creep- * ' Church History ' (1655), p. 295. 

ing into the Commonwealth which other- * It should be mentioned that by a ball 

wise might prove dangerous and infectious of Innocent 4 in 1248 it was exempt from 

diseases, or giveth life to the execution of episcopal jurisdiction (Dugd. * Monast.* i. 

laws, or the performance of such things as 260). On the other hand. Dr. Gasquet says : 

are necessary in the Commonwealth, yea, * There is no reason whatever to suppose 

although no positive law or continued that the condition of the exempt religions 

custom of common law giveth warrant to it.' was in any way worse than the rest.' 

Hudson, ' Of the Court of Star Chamber,' * Henry 8 and the English Monasteries,' i. 86. 



CXXIV COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

execution of his commission.^ Apparently the blind abbot, John 
Ayly, or Aylie, continued in possession of his office.* He died in the 
following year, and on April 24, 1480, licence was given to the prior 
and convent * to elect an abbot in the place of John Ayly, deceased.' ^ 

The case arose out of the alleged enfranchisement by Abbot Robert 
or Boger Persore of the grandfather of the plaintiff, a serf. Something 
perhaps turned on the terms of the deed of manumission. Sometimes 
the form ran ' cum sequela sua,' sometimes it added ' procreata et 
procreanda,' or equivalent words.^ The plaintiff was born after the 
grandfather's manumission, and horn his petition it would seem that 
legal chicane contended that, in the absence of terms comprising 
future offspring, he was excluded from its benefits. At this date 
such a contention was untenable. There was no question, so far as 
we know, of the legitimacy of the grandson, and even if there had 
been, the Courts had held, since the time of Edward 2,'^ that a 
bastard, as nullius filius, must be presumed free-bom. It is true that 
the deed of manumission, so far as its operative part is set forth in 
the plaint, does not expressly include the wife. But, whatever may 
have been the doubts prevalent when Glanvill and Bracton wrote as 
to the effect upon the status of a child of the bondage of one of its 
parents, these had long since been resolved. The status of the child 
was at this time held to depend upon the condition of the father.^ 
The plaintiff was born of a father, if we are to believe his statement 
and the evidence, free though enfranchised. 

There seem to have been in Fitzherbert*s time, a generation later, 
still cases of the reduction of freemen to serfdom.^ A corrupt 
ecclesiastical society burdened with debts, as Malmesbury was, might 
be not indisposed to a profitable abuse of power,^ and the precautions 
taken by the manumitted bondman, Thomas Carter, to make the fact 
of his enfranchisement as public as possible suggest that he was not 
without apprehension.^ The plaintiff in his petition marshals the 

' Pat. Bolls, 16 Ed. 4, p. 12. allegations of the plaintiff Thomas Paon- 

^ lb. p. 131, December 22, 1478. feld, of Chesterton, Cambs., occurred in the 

■ lb. 190. See p. 118, n. 3, infra. reign of Henry 5, when the prior and 

* An example of a manumission by the canons of Barnwell claimed the free tenants 
Prior and Convent of Belvoir, * cum tota holding in villainage as their bondmen, 
sequela sua,* on June 9, 6 Hen. 5 (1418), is imprisoned the complainant for seven years, 
in Madox, ' Formulare Anglicanum ' (1702), and after his release by judicial authority 
p. 420. again imprisoned him for more than a 

» Y. B. 19 Ed. 2, f. 651-2. PoUock and year. Rot. Pari. iv. 566-616. 
Maitland, * Hist. Engl. Law,' i. 406, n. 2. " The Leges Henrici Primi made careful 

* * Lex Angliffi nunquam matris sed provision for the publicity of enfranchise- 
semper patris conditionem comitari justum ment, which must be * in ecclesia, vel 
judicat.' Fortescue, ' De Laudibus,' c. 42 mercato, vel comitatu, vel hundreto coram 
(ed. 1616). testibus et palam.' 78, § 1. R. Schmid, 

' ' Surveyenge,' oh. 13, p. 31 (ed. 1539). ' Die Gesetze der Angelsaohsen ' (2nd ed., 

* A gross case, if we are to credit the 1858). 



INTRODUCTION CXXV 

evidences of his freedom. Abbot Aylie had retained him in his 
service for wages. The incident is not conclusive, since even in 
Bracton's time a bondman could enter into a contract with bis lord 
which would be protected by the Courts * quia semel voluit (dominus) 
conventionem et quamvis damnum sentiat, non tamen fit ei injuria 
et ex quo prudenter et scienter contraxit cum servo suo, tacite 
renunciavit exceptionem villenagii ' (Bracton, f. 246). A more cogent 
proof was that Abbot Aylie had demised him two houses with the 
appurtenances for term of life, receiving a fine of a hundred shillings. 
The fine suggests a copyhold, and the plaintiff in effect sets forth that 
he has, to borrow a phrase from Blackstone,* ' an interest equivalent 
to a freehold.' Such an interest in a copyhold could now be 
maintained at common law against the lord.^ Indeed, so far had the 
Courts gone in their presumptions of implied enfranchisement that 
it had been laid down in 1496 : ' Si le seignior a luy [the bondman] 
fait leas pur terme dans, ceo est enfranchisement, pur ceo que il 
prist interest en le terre vers le seignior.' Per Huse, C. J., Y. B. H. T. 
11 Hen. 7, pi. 6, f. 13. Notwithstanding the absolute powers over 
the property of a bondman in blood and tenure, and the all but 
absolute power over his person theoretically possessed by the lord, 
there is evidence that by the fifteenth century public opinion exer- 
cised, as a rule, some check upon oppression. More than a hundred 
years before this case, in the homily of the Persone's Tale, Chaucer 
condemned those who ' taken of here bondmen amerciments, whiche 
mighte more resonably ben cleped extorcions than amerciments. 
Of whiche amerciments and raunsoninge of bondemen some lordes 
stywardes seyn that it is rightful, for as muche as a cherl hath no 
1 temporel thing that it ne is his lordes, as they seyn. But certes, thise 
lordeshipes doon wrong that bireven hir bondefolk thinges that they 
never yave hem. . . . And forther-over, ther-as the lawe seith that 
temporel godes of bonde-folk been the godes of hir lordshipes, ye, that 
is for to understonde, the godes of the emperour, to deffenden hem 
in hir right but nat for to robben hem ne reven hem.' ^ Fitzherbert, 
writing a generation later than this case, condemns the practice as 
' extorcion or bribery.' * 

' ' Commentaries ' (ed. 1766), it. 100. Courts of Common Law, as weU as the 

^ This was the point of a celebrated case Court of Chancery, would protect a tenant 

tried in 1482 (Y. £. 21 Ed. 4, case 56, f. 70). in villainage with aheritable interest, though 

It was an action of trespass by the lord he had no freehold tenure. See ' iSrans. B. 

for houses and close broken. The defence Hist. Soc.' (1892), N.S., yi. pp. 288-245. 

was that the two houses and the close * ' Works of G. Chaucer,' ed. by W. W. 

were customary land, leased to defendant Skeat (1894). ' Canterbury Tales,' p. 618. 

for term of life, * par force de quel il fut The mention of the emperor shews the 

seisi Ao, come de frank tenement solonque mind of the writer to be addressed to the 

le custome de mesme le manoir.' It was Roman law, though he mitigates it with 

declared by Brian, C.J., following a pre English custom. See p. cxxvii, infra, 

cedent of Danby, C.J., in 1467, that the * Bobbery. See p. 228, n. 10, infra. 



CXXvi COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

The two cases of bondage in the volume of Select Gases in the 
Court of Requests, published by the Selden Society in 1898, exhibit 
the enforcement of an extreme degree of extortion by a lay peer ^ and 
a case of minor gravity on the part of a knight.^ In the second 
case the plaintiff declared his apprehension 'that the seyd Sir 
Edward (Gorge) wolde take or imprison hym for a bondman.' Some 
such threat appears to have been made, but not to have been carried 
into effect. But Olveston, Abbot of Malmesbury, had fewer scruples. 
If we are to believe the plaintiff, he not only robbed but tortured. 
Imprisoning his alleged bondman in the monastery, he * put hym 
both handes and fete in strayte stockes and ponderous irrons and tied 
hym to a great new cheyn to a great stocke and so yet kepyth hym in 
that intollerable durese.' ' The conservative instincts of the clergy * had 
in this case apparently maintained methods of oppression familiar, it 
may be, to the thirteenth century, but repugnant to the lay conscience 
and practice of that age.^ That the abbey maintained its grip upon 
its bondmen till the Dissolution appears from a letter to Cromwell 
in 1587 of Sir John Bryggys and Giles Pole, commissioners appointed 
to inquire into a claim by Abbot Frampton, the last abbot of Malmes- 
bury, to one William Lane, as his bondman. ' We hear the abbot,* 
they write, ' claims Lane as his bondman, and if he be not so the 
abbot does the man great wrong.* ® The reason for this tenacity on 
the part of the Abbots is disclosed in a chance sentence of a letter 
to Cromwell from Dr. William Petre on January 17, 1539. ' The 
demesnes [are] all in their [the monks of Malmesbury] own hands.' ^ 
Demesne lands in the hands of the lord were cultivated by bondmen, 

> The Earl of Bath. Barde and another practised by the clergy is adduced by Stu- 

V, the Earl of Bath, ' Select Cases in the dent in Christopher St. (German's ' Doctor 

Court of Bequests,' pp. 48-59. and Student ' — written about this time— as 

* lb. Ne&eway v. Gorge, pp. 42-46. presumptive evidence of its morality. Dia- 
' As to the legality of this, even in the logue, ii. ch. xviii. 

case of convicted prisoners, see pp. oxzxv- * In the Duchess of Buckingham's case, 
oxxxvi, infra. A monstrous instance occurred printed by Dr. Furnivall in his Introduction 
about 1439, when Humphrey, Duke of to Ballads from MSS. i. 12, it appears that 
Gloucester, seized a Wiltshire gentleman, the officer of the duke ' did sese the goodes 
John Whithome, as his bondman, confis- of the plentifFe is blood, that is to say (of 
cated his property, consisting of sixty four persons) for knowlige of ther bond- 
houses, 686 acres of land, <feo., and confined shipe, And take an Invytory therof.' The 
him for more than seven years a prisoner, taking of the inventory suggests that the 
* sub tam diris carceribus in ergastulo tam goods were not confiscated, but estimated 
obscuro et tenebroso, in adeo grandibus for tallage. Nothing is said as to the 
fame, vite miseria, victus et vestimentorum imprisonment of the bondmen, though they 
abstraocione, imprisonamenti duricie ' <&c., claimed to be free, and Edward Stafford, 
that he lost his eyesight. Duke Humphrey Duke of Buckingham, was exceptionally 
was murdered in 1446, and Whithome arbitrary and rapacious, even for that age. 
restored to his estates and freedom by a See I. S. Leadam, Inquisition of 1517, 
grant of July 16, 25 Hen. 6 (1448). Bot. * Trans. B. Hist. Soc' (1892), N.S., vi. 189. 
Pari. V. 448. • S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, XH. ii. 1323. 

* The fact that this confiscation was ' lb. xiv. i. 78. 



mXRODUCTTON CXXVll 

tenants at will at common law.^ It is clear that the monks of 
Malmesbury exercised a practical supervision of the cultivation of 
their estates, and for this purpose used their bondmen as their 
labourers. 

In his answer to the plaintifiTs petition the abbot for the most 

part contents himself with a formal traverse of the counts. But on 

the point of the seizure of the chattels he states that * he lafte with 

the wyff and children of the said Robert goodes and catall to the 

value of XX marcs (13Z. 6«. 6d.) whiche be suflBcient for there susten- 

tacion as yet and the same abbot ofiferd to delyuer to them suche 

mylche kyen as he hadde from them toward there sustentacion.' The 

plea recalls the passage in Bracton upon the amercement of villains. 

Bracton is considering the rights of the serf (sen^ against his lord. 

1 He slavishly follows the Bolognese jurist Azo,^ adopting ' the Roman 

' dilemma/ * omnes homines aut liberi sunt aut servi/ after which he 

feels constrained to identify the viUanus with the servus. This 

j identification, which had more influence upon text-books than upon 

practice, I have elsewhere considered.^ Its nonconformity with the 

common or customary law of his day is disclosed by the clause which 

follows the observation that masters could not, as in Roman times, 

inflict capital punishment on their serfs. Nay, more, he goes on to 

say, *in hoc legem habent contra dominos, quod stare possunt in 

judicio contra eos de vita et membris propter seuitiam dominorum 

vel propter intollerabilem injuriam, vt si eos destruant, quia salvum 

non possit eis waynagium suum' (f. 6).^ This recalls the clause 

^ of Magna Carta ' villanus eodem modo amercietur salvo wainnagio 

V suo si inciderit in misericordiam nostram ' * ( c. 20). If Bracton be 

right — and the fact that the exception he admits to the rights of the 

lord mars the symmetry of his theory argues strongly in support 

of his statement— it is contrary to all we know of the trend of 

opinion and practice to suppose that the reservation in favour of 

the serf had been withdrawn in the fifteenth century. It is accepted 

' See * Trans. R. Hist. Soc.' (1892), N.S., of the villain from the serf . The 'Mirror Ms 

vi. pp. 198, 220. a strenuous upholder of the rights of the 

* F. W. Maitland, 'Bracton and Azo' villain, none of which it accords to the 
(Selden Soo. 1895), pp. 44, 49. serf. ' Mirror of Justices ' (Selden Soc. 

» * Trans. R. Hist. Soc.» (1892), N.S., vi. 1893), p. 80. See I. S. Leadam, * Trans. R. 

p. 193, foU. Hist. Soc' (1892), N.S., vi. pp. 196, 201. 

* The subsequent passage limiting this Also id. The Authorship of the * Mirror of 
to serfs in ancient demesne has been shewn Justices,' ' Law Quarterly Review ' (1897), 
to be a later gloss by P. Vinogradofif, xiii. 85. Cf. the customary of King's Brom- 
* Villainage in England,' pp. 74, 75. ley in Shaw's ' Staffordshire,' i. 147. ' Con- 

* It is remarkable that the 'Mirror,' a later suetudinescustumar[i]orum deKings-Brom- 
compilation than Bracton, insists upon the ley villani [sic] dicuntur a villa et non a 
right to waynage as a differentiating mark villenage.' 

h 



CXXVIU COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

that waynage means the plough and plough team. Perhaps the 
abstention from unprisonment of the bondman, which we have seen 
reason to believe customary, was an inference from the reservation of 
waynage, since the plough and the plough team would be useless 
without the ploughman. The abbot, however, does not plead that he 
has exempted his bondman's waynage. He says nothing of the 
plough or the plough team. He does not appear to allude to the 
law of Magna Carta or of Bracton. He pleads that he has left the 
family suflScient sustenance. The plea reminds us of the Mirror's 
exposition of the law rather than of that of Bracton. ' It is an abuse 
that one can claim as a bondman him for whom one has never found 
sustenance, whereas a serf is only a serf so long as he is in ward 
(serms a servanda), and whereas no one ought to claim as a serf even 
one who is in his ward unless he finds sustenance for this serf, or an 
equivalent, namely, house and land in his fee whence the serf may 
gain his sustenance ' &c. (p. 165). It is difficult to resist the con- 
clusion that the plea of the abbot and the statement of the ' Mirror * 
point to some common authority. A legal justification of the duty to 
the villain so imposed by custom upon the lord is supplied by an 
argument of Serjeant Keble in a case probably belonging to the end 
of the fifteenth century, which turns upon the question whether a 
villain had appeal of mayhem against his lord. It must be premised 
that by the statute of 23 Edw. 3, c. 1 (1349), confirmed by 12 Eic. 2, 
c. 3 (1388) and 2 Hen. 5, st. 1, c. 4 (1414), any person of the labour- 
ing class, whether free or bond, might be summoned to serve any 
employer for wages if not wanted by his lord. On this Keble argued, 
* quant il [the villain] est maime il ne poit doner service anul, & auxy 
si le seigneur ne poit doner a luy manger & boier il nest able pur 
travel pur son viver.' ^ The villain would naturally represent his wife 
and family. 

Another curious feature of this case is that the deed which was 
the evidence of manumission had passed out of the possession of the 
plaintiflf's father as a pledge for eleven shillings, and was alleged to 
have been assigned by the bailee to the abbot. Obviously the impli- 
cation involved in the utihsation as a pledge of a deed of manu- 
mission is the existence of a certain amount of risk of a reclamation 
to bondage. 

Philosophic historians sometimes suggest that medieval bondage 
was, after all, not a more degraded condition than that of the modern 
free labourer tied by necessity to an employment which he dares not 

' R. Keilwey^B • Reports ' (1688), sub * Casus incerti temporis,' c. 116, p. 134. 



INTRODUCTION CXxix 

abandon. To the sentiment there is all the difference between 
economic compulsion, apparently the outcome of inevitable conditions, 
and a legal dependence upon personal caprice. Even comfortable 
circumstances, which he apparently enjoyed, created in the Malmes- 
bury bondman no satisfaction with his lot. There is a pathetic ring 
in the words which, in his old age, he is recorded to have used that 
* if he might bring that [his freedom] aboute it wold be more joifuU 
to him then any worlelie goode.* 

It has been seen that in theory the serfs chattels were his lord's. 
Thomas Garter, who is alleged to have been enfranchised, was a man 
of some substance. He was charged forty marks for his enfranchise- 
ment, which contrasts with the sixteen marks charged for the enfran- 
chisement of a bondman by the Prior of Bath (p. 33). He kept a man 
' servant ' ; he rode on horseback ; he gave a feast to celebrate his 
freedom ; he was even on friendly terms with the gentlemen of the 
abbot's household. These last were the intermediaries for a nego- 
tiation with the abbot as to ^ what som the same Thomas shold pay 
for his manumission ' (p. 127). But in order to evade the legal diffi- 
culty that a serf could not redeem himself with money which was 
not his, but his lord's, a friend named Thomas White appeared in 
the court of the manor of Newnton, to which Thomas Carter was 
bondman regardant, and there paid down 10/., part of the price of 
his freedom. The MS. subsequently becomes indecipherable, but it 
seems to say that on the following day Thomas Garter himself handed 
over the forty marks {261. ISs. 4td.) to the abbot at Malmesbury and 
then received the deed of enfranchisement from him. Part, at least, 
of the money in Garter's hands was, however, still the property of 
Thomas White's father, as whose agent the son acted, and the legal 
fiction that he was the purchaser and manumitter was so far main- 
tained that it was not to be repaid by Garter until a day following 
the delivery of the deed of manumission. This method of enfranchise- 
ment was as old as Glanvill and Bracton.^ 

The other case in which the Abbey of Malmesbury is concerned ooiiord i 
(Gulford V. Wotton, pp. 45-49) corroborates the evidences of misrule. 
The quartering of Abbot Aylie's natural son on the lands of the 
house has already been mentioned. His conduct suggests either that 
he continued under his father's successor a course of presumption 
and contempt which had been tolerated by his father or that he 

» Gl. V. 5, Br. f. 194, b. See Vinogradoflf, • Villainage,* pp. 86, 87 ; Pollock and Mait- 
land, * Hist. Eng. Law,' i. 41(M11. 

h2 



CXXX COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

represented the opposition of the copyholders to a recent assertion on 
the part of the abbot as lord of his claim to the wastes of the manor. ^ 
The case brings before us the mode of remunerating the officers 
or ' obedientiaries ' of the Benedictine houses. Instead of receiving 
payment out of the common fund, they were quartered on particular 
estates. This was certainly the system at Malmesbury in the time of 
Abbot Colern (1260-1296) and probably long before.^ The ' Accounts 
of the Obedientiaries of Abingdon Abbey '^ shew that it prevailed 
there. In 1275 Abbot Wenlock of Shrewsbury, also a Benedictine 
house, settled a mill at Baschurch, four houses in Shrewsbury 
and a house in London on the kitchen of the Abbey of Shrewsbury.* 
Until recent times it was the practice in the Colleges of the Uni- 
versities to keep separate the accounts of the various foundations, 
the revenues being allotted to their respective beneficiaries. The 
peculiarity of this case is that, upon default by the tenant of the 
holding assigned for the remuneration of the kitchener, the kitchener 
himself and not the abbot and convent took action. To leave the 
officials of the abbey to enforce their claims against their tenants 
was like a recognition by the Crown of a right of private war, and was 
likely to lead to scenes, such as that described by the plaintiff, 
injurious to the abbey's repute. 

^Leuc?" ^ glimpse into a forgotten side of medieval life is revealed by the 

case of Walterkyn v. Letice (pp. 164-168), in which the hermit of 
Highgate sues the Vicar of St. Pancras for trespass, assault, and loss 
of goods. The occasion was a solemn procession, customary in 
Bogation Week, and the circumstances suggest that the vicar and 
parish officers were ' beating the bounds.' The complainant was a 
hermit, the successor of a long line of hermits, to whom in 1864 had 
been entrusted the repair of the highway between Highgate and 
Smithfield, with the right to take toll. It would appear from a com- 
parison of the King's grant of 1864, as set forth in Lloyd's ' History 
of Highgate' (p. 113), with the bishop's grant of 1531, as given in 
Newcourt (see p. 167, n. 2, infra), that the profits of the place were 
derived from two sources : the first the right granted by the King to 
exact ' pavage ' for the repair of the road ; the second the right 

» Cp. Fitzherbert, ' Surveyenge ' (in * ' Registrum Malmesburiense,' ed. J. S. 

Ancient Tracts concerning the management Brewer (1880), ii. 371. 
of landed property [1767]), 7, p. 19. * And » Camden Soc. 1892. 

also the lordes haue enclosed a grete parte * A. Owen and J. 6. Blakeway, * Hist, of 

of theyr waste groundes and streytened Shrewsbury/ ii. 114. 
theyr tenauntes of theyr commyns therein.' 



INTRODUCTION CXXXl 

granted by the bishop to receive the tithes and other offerings made to 
the chapel. We find similarly that licences to hermits to ask alms, 
whether for maintenance during the execution of a public work or for 
maintenance simply, were granted by the King's letters patent to 
I reputable hermits, who were thereby exempt from statutes against 
* vagabonds. Sometimes such were provided with letters testimonial 
from their bishops (12 Eic. 2, c. 7 [1888]). 

As an example of a licence to a hermit engaged on public works, 
the following will suflSce : * 1335, Jan. 26. — Protection for two years 
for brother John Le Mareschal, a hermit, staying at the chapel of 
St. Michael by Blythe, about the making of a causey between Blythe 
and Mardersey and a bridge for the town of Mardersey, who is 
dependent on charity for the sustenance of himself and the men 
working at the causey and bridge and is going to divers parts of the 
realm to collect alms.' ^ For a case of a licence granted where no 
pretence of public service was advanced, see Pat. Rolls, 1339, July 18, 
p. 302. * Protection for one year for Robert de Notyngham, hermit, 
who depends upon charity for his subsistence.' The statute of 1388 
shews that the character of a hermit was constantly assumed by 
mendicants. This we know from other sources, as the Vision of Piers 
Plowman, Skeat's edit., text G, passus x., 1. 188: 

' As eremites that en-babiten by the beye weyes 
And in borwes a-mong brewesters ^ and beggen in churches.' 

The first hermit of Highgate, it is suggested by Lloyd (p. 112), 
may have been the gatekeeper to the bishop's park, and his hermitage 
the gatehouse at its entrance. The plaintiff hermit in this case 
enjoyed a garden, which he and his predecessors had paled and diked, 
and an orchard. He maintained a servant. The quarrel between 
the parish of St. Pancras and the hermitage was one of some standing, 
for his predecessors had set up the palings and dug the dikes, with 
the express object of stopping the processions— at least so the vicar 
alleged. 

The vicar's statement suggests that the plaintiff had not long 
been in possession, and that it was uncertain how he would act. The 
reason why the parish should wish to pass through the hermitage 
grounds is not explicitly stated, but may be inferred from Newcourt's 
statement that Highgate was partly in the parish of Hornsey, and 

* Calendar of Pat. Rolls of Edw. 3, 1895, ' and was reckoned among the callings of low 

p. 72. . repute.' H. T. Riley, • Liber Albus ' (1861), 

! ' The point of this satire is that brewing p. 307, n. 2. 
'was confined almost wholly to females 



CXXXU COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

partly in that of St. Pancras, though the chapel was in the parish of 
Homsey. The procession, attempting to force its way through the 
garden, was resisted by the plaintiff and two men armed with clubs. 
Blows were exchanged ; numbers gained the day ; and the hermit 
sought redress in the Star Chamber. 

Vale P. Actions for defamation were maintained in civil courts both 

Donyngum bcfore and after the Conquest.^ They were frequent in local courts. 
Smyth V. Numerous examples are to be seen in 'Select Pleas in Manorial 

Broke. 

Courts ' ^ and * The Court Baron,' ^ but * no royal writ was devised for 
. the relief of the slandered.* The cause of this was doubtless the 
claim of the Ecclesiastical Courts to take cognisance of such cases. 
Of the enforcement of ecclesiastical jurisdiction in this matter there 
are frequent examples, dating from 1490 (c. Ixxix.), in W. H. Hale, 
* Proceedings in Criminal Causes ' from the Act Books of Ecclesiastical 
Courts (1847). 

In taking cognisance, therefore, of an action for slander involving 
no Scandalum Magnatum the Star Chamber appears to have been 
extending lay at the expense of ecclesiastical jurisdiction. Slanders 
of persons of distinction were by 12 Eic. 2, c. 11, punishable by the 
advice of the Council. But W. Hudson, in his * Treatise of the Court 
of Star Chamber,* cites no example of a private action for words 
heard by this Court, though there seem to have been actions for 
libel. He observes, however, that *in all ages libels have been 
severely punished in this court ; but most especially they began to be 
frequent about 42 & 43 Ehz. when Sir Edward Coke was her 
Attorney-General.' This refers to libels between private persons. It 
is conceived that the justification of the Court's jurisdiction in cases 
of slander of this sort was based upon the theory that the Court 
supplemented the defects of common and statutory law. Of this 
form of extension the cases of Vale v. Broke, Donyngton v. Broke, and 
Smyth 17. Broke (pp. 88-45) are the earliest examples I have met.'* 

Attorney- The casc of Attomey- General Hobert v. Parre and Others 

pmand (pp. 18, 19) is a fragment of the proceedings upon an information 
iiled in the Star Chamber against a panel for perjury. 

The punishment of jurors for a false verdict is described by 

' Bee r. and M. * Hist, of Eng. Law,' ii. * Several irials for slander are to be 

585, foil. found in J. Hawarde's Beports, but they are 

- Selden Soc. (18H8). chiefly for the slander of persons occupying 

» lb. 1890. official positions. 



otheri. 



INTRODUCTION CXXXlll 

Forsyth and Stephen, followed by Pollock and Maitland, ^as an 
incidental result of the process called attaint.^ It is true that the 
writ as given in Bracton (L 291) orders the second jury to be 
summoned to try the original question of disseisin. But the chapter 
of Bracton (f. 288, b) under the rubric * De conuictione sine attincta 
iuratorum qui male iurauerint ' shews that the punishment was in 
his time regarded as an end in itself. It may be admitted, how- 
ever, that in laying down the proposition that an attaint of perjury 
could only lie against jurors in an assize, because where litigants 
had put themselves upon the jury they had elected to take their 
verdict, Bracton appears to regard the perjury of jurors otherwise 
than as an offence in itself. The reason for this was that perjury 
was a matter for the Ecclesiastical Courts, and was only taken 
cognisance of by the Eoyal Courts when it touched the King. The 
assizes being a royal ordinance, the offence against their procedure 
committed by perjury was an offence against the King. This point 
of view was carried into jury trials ' si fiat jurata de aliquo quod 
tangat dominum regem ' (id. f. 290, b). In that case an attaint of 
a perjured jury would lie. The process of attaint was a trial of 
the original jury of twelve by another jury of at least twenty-four. 
The justification of the imputation of criminality to the attainted 
jury was that they were in theory of the law supposed to return a 
verdict as to facts known to them, Bracton expressly stating that the 
jury were excusable if there were dilKculties in arriving at the facts 
(f. 290, b). If the verdict of the twenty-four were opposed to that of 
the twelve, the guilt of the twelve was ipso facto demonstrated, and 
they were arrested and imprisoned. Their lands and goods were 
forfeited to the King.^ The consequences being so serious, the King 
granted writs of attaint sparingly, until by the Statute of Westminster 
the First, c. 88 (1275), it was provided that the King should hence- 
forth grant them * quant il semblera que besoigne soit,' which still left 
a large margin to his discretion. This was swept away by an Act of 
1361 (84 Ed. 3, c. 7), giving a right of attaint to all, both in pleas 
real and personal ^ (cp. 1 Edw. 8, st. 1, c. 6 ; 5 Edw. 3, cc. 6, 7 ; 

* W. Forsyth, * Hist, of Trial by Jury,' procedure was confined at common law to 
1852, p. 181 ; Stephen, * Hist. Grim. Law/ real actions (Beeves, * Hist, of English 
iU. 241 ; P. and M. u. 541. Law ' [1869], iii. 147, n.). The statutes of 

' Coke enumerates eight punishments Edward 3 and the language of the Act of 
attaching to the o£fence. Coke upon Little- 1 495 shew that, whatever the abstract doc- 
ton* 294, b. trine of common law might be, the practice 

* Finlason maintains, citing Y. B. 14 had been to bring actions of attaint in pleas 
Hen. 7, fo. 14, that in consequence of personal as well as real. See also Coke, 
the highly penaJ character of attaint the 2 Inst. 130. 



CXXxiv C50URT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

28 Edw. 3, c. 8) . Another Act (c. 8) of the same session of 1361 gave the 
party aggrieved an action for damages against jurymen who accepted 
bribes from the other side. These damages were assessed by an Act 
of 1364 (38 Edw. 3, st. 1, c. 12) as ten times the amount corruptly 
received, half to go to the King and half to the party grieved. But the 
venality of juries continued, and the law's delays threw obstacles in 
the way of checking it. A statute of 1433 sets forth the methods 
adopted by corrupt jurymen to protect themselves against the attaint. 
* In times past in writs of attaints, when the Grand Jury had 
appeared in court and were ready to pass their verdict (" fuist prest 
de passer "), one of the tenants or defendants or of the petty jurors 
named in such writs sometime have pleaded false and feigned pleas 
(" ount pledez faintes et faux plees ") which were not triable by the 
grand jury of the attaint and by that means delayed the taking of 
such grand juries until such pleas were tried; and after such pleas 
tried and found for the plaintiff, another of the jurors tenants or 
defendants might plead another such false and feigned plea after the 
last continuance in the same attaints {** puis Ja darrein continuance 
en mesmez les atteintes '') ; and so every of the defendants jurors or 
tenants, after other, might plead such false and feigned plea and delay 
the grand jury when it was ready to pass its verdict, and though that 
all such false and feigned pleas were found against them which pleaded, 
no pain was given them by the common law * &c. (11 Hen. 6, c. 4). 
It was sought to check these dilatory tactics by the provision that the 
plaintiflfs should be allowed to recover their damages and costs against 
those availing themselves of them. But this did not put an end to 
the delays. The other litigant and each individual of the twelve 
jurymen against whom the writ of attaint had issued was free to put 
in his own plea of defence * triable in whatsoever county that him 
pleaseth.' These were not feigned pleas, but pleas substantial to the 
issue. Accordingly damages did not Ue under the Act of 1433. It 
appears, too, that after these pleas had been entered and tried, the 
grand jury had yet to be summoned to give a verdict on the whole 
case. The result was that plaintiffs in actions of attaint were baulked 
of justice * by ten years or more in common estimation.' A new Act 
in 1437 therefore fixed the extraordinarily high sum of 20Z. per annum 
in land as the qualification of jurors in attaint. The object of this 
was presumably to secure against corruption. In order to grapple 
with the device of dilatory pleas entered in counties outside the venue 
C foreign pleas ') judgement on such pleas was to be taken as a final 
judgement in attaint against the juror raising them (15 Hen. 6, c. 5). 



INTRODUCTION CXXXV 

An elaborate *Act agaynst perjurye ' (11 Hen. 7, c. 21), passed for 
the city of London in 1495, recites that perjury 'is muche and 
customably used ' there among jurors. The Act endeavoured to 
suppress it by the same method of raising their qualifications, which 
were to be as much as * of substance of c. li.' The Court of Husting 
was given a jurisdiction to try attaints, and the grand jury increased 
in number to forty-eight (11 Hen. 7, c. 21). For the rest of the 
country another Act was passed in the same session intituled ' An 
Acte for Writtes of Attaynt to be brought agaynst jurors for untrue 
verdictes ' (11 Hen. 7, c. 24). Besides fixing the qualification of the 
grand jury of twenty-four at the yearly income of twenty marks 
(13Z. 68. Sd.) arising from freehold, the Act improved the chances of 
conviction by lowering the penalties. Where the verdict was for above 
the value of 40Z., the penalty on the attainted jurors was fixed at 20Z. 
each ; where below, at 51. each. The grand jury in these smaller 
cases was qualified by freehold of the value of five marks {SI. 6«. 8d.) 
a year, or ' a c marc of godes and catalles.' In addition to the fixed 
minimum penalties of 20Z. and 51., the justices received power to 
impose fines at their discretion. The Act, originally temporary, was 
continued by successive Acts (12 Hen. 7, c. 2; 19 Hen. 7, c. 3) 
to the end of the reign. ^ The mitigation of penalties confirms the 

, statement of Coke (3 Inst. 163) that * the punishment of perjury in 
jurors for a false verdict was so severe by the common law as few or 
no juries were upon first cause convicted.' The Act * Pro Camera 

. Stellata ' did not expressly ^ confer on the Statutory Court an express 
power to punish perjuries. It would seem, therefore, that it derived 
its jurisdiction from another source, and we know, as a matter of 
fact, that the Council took cognisance of perjury in jurors.' The 
extension of jurisdiction from this to perjury in general naturally 
followed.'* 

A glimpse into the administration of public gaols is given ^SSh "' 

* After its expiration it was re-enacted a witness (Miles, a common informer), * it 
in 1532 by 23 Hen. 8, c. 3 ('An Acte * was resolved by all the Goarte, that this 
concernyng perjurie & punysshement of Courte maye determyne all penuries at the 
untreue verdictes '). Gonmion Law and that it was an aunoiente 

' Sir J. F. Stephen thinks that in this Courte longe before Henry 7, & determyned 

matter the Act did constructively sanction causes and Bichard 3 sate judiciallye in this 

the practice of the Ck)uncil to try perjuries. Courte and the Lo. Chaunoellour sayde 

' Hist, of the Criminal Law,* iii. 244. that in Chauncellor £romlie*s time, Serg' 

* Sir F. Palgrave, * Essay * &c. (1834), p. Lovelace & Ployden had set there handes 
55. See also Coke, 3 Inst. 174. to a demurrer for such a bill of periurye & 

* Cf. Hudson, *0f the Court of Star were convented & bitterlye reprehended 
Chamber,* p. 51. As to perjury in general, by the Courte.' J. Hawarde, * Les Beports ' 
on October 31, 1616, upon a demurrer to » &o. (1894) ed. by W. P. Baildon, pp. 301-2. 
the jurisdiction of the Court for perjury of 



OchyU. 



CXXXVl COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

both in Tayllour v. Att Well, already discussed, and in Tapton v. 
Colsyll (pp. 61-54). In this case, heard in 1495, the Mayor of 
Exeter, the defendant, had ordered his officials to arrest a widow 
living at Thorverton, or Thoverton. According to the plaintiff the 
order had been executed with brutality and personal injuries had 
been inflicted on her. She had been dragged off to gaol, presumably 
the city gaol at South Gate, where, even in John Howard's time, 
there was * no chimney ; no court ; no water ; no sewer.' ^ Here 
she was fettered with leg-irons, weighing, according to her story, 
more than SO lb., and a chain besides, to await her trial on a charge 
of felony. As a justice of the peace had power by 34 Ed. 8, c. 1, 
to imprison certain persons therein set out, and the charge against 
the plaintiff seems to have been one of felony, her incarceration 
was presumably legal. Whether the infliction of irons was so is 
more doubtful. Bracton lays down the general principle that 
condemnation to fetters was illegal ' quia career ad continendos, non ad 
puniendos haberi debeat.' * Whether or not this proposition was 
borrowed from Ulpian,' it was the principle which gradually won its 
way into English law.* If this was the rule to be observed in the case 
of convicted prisoners, though Bracton admits that it was not univer- 
sally recognised by the judges of his day, still more was it binding in 
that of the untried. * It is forbidden, says the " Mirror of Justices,'' * 
some twenty years after Bracton wrote, that any one be tormented 
before judgement.* But the author agrees with Bracton that * it is 
lawful for gaolers to put fetters upon those whom they suspect (of trying 
to escape),* ^ though he limits the weight to twelve ounces. Britton, 
who was possibly contemporary with the author of the * Mirror,* 
mentions other exceptions. ' As to prisoners, we will that none may 
be put in irons, but such as have been apprehended for felony, or are 
imprisoned in parks or vi varies, or detained for arrears of accounts,' ' 
the last of these being by Statute Westminster II. c. 11. Felony being 
capital, it may be that a suspicion of intended escape was an easily 
justified presumption, upon which the plaintiff in this case was dealt 
with. But the excessive weight was clearly incompatible with the 
spirit of Bracton as with the limitations expressed by the ' Mirror.' 
It speaks well for the promptitude of the criminal administration at 
this date that the prisoner was, in the course of the twenty-four weeks 

• J. Howard, ' State of the Prisons * * It is quoted with approval by Coke, 3 

(2nd ed. 1780), p. 348. Inst. 34. 

« Bracton, 106, a. * Seld. Soc. 1893, p. 52. 

> Bee Pollock and Maitland, ' Hist. Engl. ** Ibid. Bracton, f. 137. 

Law,' u. 515. ' Britton, ed. F. M. Nichols (1866), 1. 44. 



INTRODUCTION CXXXVU 

during which she was in gaol, thrice brought before commissioners of 
gaol delivery. It does not clearly appear why she was not either put 
on her trial or released. Possibly, as in modern usage, a removal was 
ordered on the first occasion pending the collection of evidence. If 
this were so, her subsequent imprisonment after the prosecution had 
had a reasonably sulKcient time was undoubtedly oppressive. Coke ^ 
cites 5 Hen. 4, c. 10 (1404) as authority for the proposition * that 
none be imprisoned by any justice of the peace, but in the common 
gaole, to the end they might have their triall at the next gaole de- 
Uvery, or sessions of the peace.' The Act does not go so far, being 
designed to put down arbitrary imprisonment in private castles. But 
Coke's gloss states the practice in the case of imprisonment in common 
gaols based on c. 29 of Magna Carta, ' nulli differemus justitiam vel 
rectum.* ^ 

Having been released after the third assize, the prisoner was re- 
arrested in default of finding sureties to keep the peace. Fitzherbert, 
in his * Loffice de Justices de Peace,' tells us that the justices can at 
discretion call upon any person to find surety of the peace and can 
imprison him in default until surety found. It was competent for 
such a person to sue out a writ of Supersedeas in Chancery, which, 
perhaps as a matter of common form, recited that sufficient security 
had been lodged in Chancery and ordered the immediate enlargement 
of the prisoner.^ Possibly the amount of the security was relaxed by 
the Chancellor ' in favorem libertatis.* It was by the humanity of 
some of the citzens of Exeter that the plaintiff thus obtained release 
and was able to petition the Star Chamber for redress of her wrongs. 

A group of six cases brings before us the principal matters engag- 
ing the attention of the town populations. Of these the first, in which 
the celebrated printer Pynson was plaintiff (pp. 114-118), illustrates 
the jealousy with which, from time immemorial, the citizens of Lon- 
don had viewed the influx of ahens to compete with themselves in 
commerce or industry. The second, the Abbot v. the Bailiff of Shrews- 
bury (pp. 178-208), i&an example of the friction which seems very 
generally to have existed between growing towns and the great ecclesi- 
astical corporations in their midst. Of this state of things the secular 
animosities which mark the history of St. Alban*s and Bury St. 
Edmund's are the best known. Another subject of lively interest to 

* 2 Inst. 43. of gaol delivery, for which he refers to 

* See Coke, 2 Inst. 315, on the Statute of cc. 26 and 29 of Magna Carta. 
Glouce8ter,c. 9 (1278), where it is expressly * The writ is set out in Fitzherbert, 
enacted that a homicide be tried at the next ' Loffice de Justices de Peace * (ed. 1617), 
coming of the justices in eyre or the justices p. 145, b. 



CXXXVm COURT OF THE STAB CHAMBER 

the towns was the taking of toll, which does not fail to shew itself in 
the Shrewsbury case, but which is a main grievance in the dispute 
between the cities of Exeter and London (pp. 71-96), in Couper v. 
Gervaux (pp. 86-38), which involves a similar controversy between 
the cities of Salisbury and London, and in Whyte v. the Mayor &c. of 
Gloucester (pp. 225, 226). Two other cases bring before us the efforts 
made by Henry 7 to suppress notorious evils affecting the pro- 
sperity of the towns. Of these the first was the use of illegal and dis- 
honest weights and measures, as set forth in the petition of the Lead 
Miners of Yorkshire (pp. 69-71) ; the other the throttling of trade 
and industry by the exactions of the gilds, as in the case of Butlond 
and others v. Austen (pp. 262-271). 

pynaonand The aliens affected the suburbs,^ where they were free from the 

others ». ' ** 

sqayer. cxactions of the municipal officers, who with the connivance of the 
corporation employed malicious chicane of all sorts with the object of 
driving them out of the country.' But in the suburbs they were 
liable to the unrestrained outbreaks of the mob. Such was the 
experience of Richard Pynson, himself a Norman, who petitioned the 
Star Chamber for redress against the violence of his neighbours of 
the parish of St. Clement Danes. His servants were probably like 
himself foreigners, the art of printing in England being less advanced 
than on the Continent.' More than thirty years later, the University 
of Cambridge obtained a licence to appoint three stationers and 
printers or booksellers, either aliens or natives.* Normans ^ were 
specially employed in the printing of law books. There were also a 
large number of foreign letter-casters for printers.^ London at all 
times attracted a considerable number of resident aliens. 

La 1464 a general petition was presented to Edward 4 from the 

* handcrafty men and women ' of London and * other good citees, 
tounes, boroughs and villages.' ^ The petitioners complained of the 

* grete nombre & multitude of aliens and straungers of dy vers nations, 
beyng artificers, housholders & dwellers in dyvers citees, tounes, 

' The brotherhood of the Ck)nception of ' See examples in H. N. Humphreys, 

the Virgin Mary, incorporated in 1632, was • Hist, of the Art of Printing,* 1867. 
for foreign artificers and handicraftsmen ♦ S. P. Dom. Hon. 8, vii. 1026(27). 

dwelling in London and the suburbs. ^ In 1536 John le Rowsse of Normandy, 

S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, v. 766(7). Commis- printer, gave evidence upon an inquiry into 

sioners were appointed on December 3, assaults upon Frenchmen in London. Sec 

1528, to inquire into the number of resident the life of B. Pynson in ' Diet. Nat. Biog.' 
aliens in London and a compass of two ' T. Page, 'Historicallntrod. to Calendar 

miles from the suburbs. lb. iv. 4997. of Denizations ' &c, (1893), p. xlix. 

* See the petition of the Joiners Strangers ' Bot. Pari. v. 606. 

to Wolsey in 1621. S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, 
ui. 1680 ; cf . ib. 2736. 



INTRODUCTION CXXXIX 

boroughs & villages . . . usyng such Hand craftes & havyng & 
settyng a werke grete nombre of people in their houses of their own 
nations & none other ' &c. That this grievance was not exaggerated 
may be inferred from the report of Marillac, the French ambassador, 
to Francis 1 on May 22, 1541. ' Les Anglois . . . sont si ignorans 
en toutes sortes d'oeuvres mecaniques qui sont contraintz passer par 
les mains des etrangers, combien qu'ilz ne les ayment point.' ^ The 
uprising against foreigners in 1517, called Evil May Day, originated 
i out of a conversation of one Lyncoln, a broker, with Dr. Bele, 
a canon of * the Spital/ on the subject of the ' artificers straungers 
that tooke awaye all the lyuynge.' ^ 

It is perhaps not to be wondered at that with the growth in Abbot ». 
importance of the trading community and the enlargement of their Shrewsbury, 
franchises by royal favour contests frequently arose against the 
proprietors of manorial rights. The clash of local rights was incessant 
throughout the Middle Ages. Especially was this the case where 
the landowners were wealthy monastic establishments, deriving their 
revenues, for the most part, from agriculture, and comparatively 
indifferent to the progress of trade. As corporations naturally dis- 
posed to be conservative, they were tenacious of their traditions and 
indisposed to slacken restraints which the mercantile community felt 
to be galling and tyrannical. As at St. Alban's and Bury St. 
Edmund's, so it was at Shrewsbury. Since the thirteenth century 
the town, increasing in numbers and consequence, had been seeking to 
extend the area of its jurisdiction, while the abbots, who if not lords of 
the manor held sundry manorial rights, such as the mills and a manor 
of increasing importance in the eastern suburb, had been resisting 
what they regarded as invasions of their privileges. But royal grants, 
themselves an encroachment on the jurisdictions of manorial lords, 
were to be had on payment of sufficient fees, and were constantly 
maintained by the exercise of royal authority. From such grants the 
townsmen of Shrewsbury conceived of their bailiflfs, as they express 
it, as ' the King's lieutenantz ' and their quarrel one in which they 
might invoke royal support. 

The Abbey of Shrewsbury lay on the east bank of the Severn, 
separated from the town by the river, which was crossed by the Stone, 
now known as the English bridge. Between the abbey walls and the 
bridge there was a tract of ground with a few houses built upon it 
which retains to this day its name of the Abbey Foregate. There 

• MS. R. C, Basohet's Transcr. « Hall»s ♦ Chron.' pp. 586-7. 



Cxl COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

was evidence to shew that although this had belonged to the abbey, 
and had once been occupied with houses which had been destroyed by 
the Welsh, a compact had been entered into between the abbey and 
the town to leave it unbuilt upon in order that, in the event of war, 
a fortification might be erected on it for the protection of the bridge 
and the town. Whatever documents may have been put in as 
evidence before the Star Chamber, we know enough at the present 
day to assure us that the abbot's claim to manorial jurisdiction 
over this land was justified by precedent. The town, however, perhaps 
because sensible that upon the burgesses would fall the burden of the 
fortification contingently contemplated, had for many years asserted 
the right of jurisdiction over it, and had obstructed the taking of toll 
by the abbot's oflScers. The abbey had for some time been in an 
impoverished condition, and the toll was perhaps more rigorous than 
theretofore. There followed a series of squabbles and riots, and the 
appearance of the abbot in 1604 as plaintiff in the Star Chamber. It 
is clear from the documents that the town was fairly unanimous in 
its resistance. The names of those charged with disorder include its 
most substantial burgesses. Foremost among the champions of the 
town were the parishioners of St. Chad's, the parish nearest to the 
Stone bridge. Of nine names which it has been possible to trace, 
owing to the circumstance that their owners left wills, eight ^ are 
parishioners of St. Chad's. 

The chief value of the case from the point of view of the history 
of law is in the light it throws on the constitution and early working 
of the Star Chamber already discussed. 

This case consists of no fewer than twelve documents, of which 
very few are dated. Some diflSculty has therefore been experienced 
in settling their order, for the quarrel between the town and the abbey 
raged during many years and defied the efforts of the Court to con- 
clude it. The first document in order, lettered * A' by me, is without 
date. It is an answer on the part of the town to a complaint by the 
abbot to the Star Chamber. Its date is approximately determined 
first by a reference in document * B ' to the fact that the baihffs have 
brought up Eichard Dicher, bailiff in 1502-3 for examination, which 
examination follows, lettered * C,' and is dated February 6, anno xix. 
i.e. Henrici 7, i. (1504) ; secondly, a paper drawn up in 1509, when 
the quarrel broke out afresh, headed ' Summary of the Controversies ' 
&c., states that the original complaint was filed in Hilary Term, 

> Edward Knyght, David Ireland, Roger Richard Lyster, Nicholas Waryng, Richard 
Later, Richard Dioher, Richard Pope, Purser. 



INTRODUCTION Cxll 

19 Henry 7 ; i.e. presumably in January 1504 ; thirdly, the bailiflfs in 
' A ' attack the abbot for being in London, to which he replies in ' B ' 
that he is there attending Parliament. This must have been early 
in 1504. It is to be noted that the answers to interrogatories in 
document ' C,' the interrogatories being lost, are answers to eleven 
interrogatories, which are therefore evidently distinct from the undated 
seven interrogatories of document *G/ Document *D' is dated, being 
an exemplification of a decree of the Star Chamber of July 8, 1508. 
This exemplification has been inserted here at the date of the decree, 
though we know, as a matter of fact, that it was issued by Robert 
Eydon, clerk of the Council, on July 10, 1509 (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, 
i. 289). Document *E* is another complaint by the abbot. It 
speaks of Henry 7 as ' our late sovereign lord,' and petitions for an 
exemplification of the decree of July 8, 1508. It is therefore between 
April 22 and July 8, 1509. Document * F ' is * The summary of the 
controversies ' to which the abbot refers in document * J ' as a * breviat ' 
drawn up by him or on his behalf upon a former request by the Lord 
Chancellor. It refers to the decree of the Star Chamber of July 8, 
1508, and is, therefore, later than that date. 

Document * G ' contains seven interrogatories on behalf of the abbot, 
and document * H ' the answers. This last document has a very signifi- 
cant date and signature. It is signed by Robert Rydon on the last 
day of February. There is no date of the year. Reason has already 
been given for believing it not to belong to the earlier proceedings, the 
answers to the interrogatories in which are in document * C It there- 
fore belongs to the later proceedings, and is the sequel of a plaint and 
an answer, both of which have been lost. But it cannot be later than 
1509 because Robert Rydon died between July 10 and October 19 of 
that year, when Mewtis succeeded to his place. It must, therefore, be 
dated February 28, 1509. The next document, ' I,' is dated October 14. 
It is a continuation of the examination of the witnesses upon the 
abbot's interrogatories * G.' The interval which had elapsed since the 
previous examination may perhaps have been due to the illness and 
death of Robert Rydon. Perhaps document * J,' the letter of the abbot 
to the Chancellor, intervened, for it refers to the issue of the exempli- 
fication on July 10, 1509. As, however, this is uncertain, I have 
thought it best to continue the answers to the interrogatories. The 
letter appears to have been written before the case came on in the 
Star Chamber, for it deprecates a petition by the bailiffs, which was 
perhaps included in the lost answer, for the case to be sent to the 
common law. Document * K ' is dated April 12, 1 Hen. 8 (1510), 



Cxlii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

and complains of language ased by the abbot at the hearing in the 
Star Chamber, which, therefore, must have recently taken place. 
Document * L,' which is a complaint or petition by the abbot, gives 
a continuous history of the riotous proceedings at Shrewsbury from 
July 21, 1509, when the exemplification of July 10 was publicly read, 
to St. David's Day following, that is, March 1, 1510. Curiously 
enough, it is indorsed * xxij day of October anno primo Henrici Octavi.' 
That this is a blunder for * anno secundo ' is conclusively proved, first 
from the contents of the document already mentioned, and secondly 
by the fact that John Mewtis, who signs as clerk of the Council, was 
not clerk until October 19, 1510. 

Hewytand Amoug the obstacles to trade introduced by the avarice or necessity 

Bx^,"* of the towns was the exaction of excessive tolls from merchants, 
whether of English or of alien blood, who were not free of their 
privileges. An instance of this, belonging to the year 1533, the 
offenders being the Mayor and Corporation of Hull, was published in 
the Select Cases in the Court of Requests, p. 39. In that case, as in 
the case of Hewyt and the Mayor and Corporation of Exeter ?;. the 
Mayor and Corporation of London (pp. 71-95), exemption from toll was 
claimed on the ground that complainants were tenants in ancient de- 
mesne. In the case of Exeter their privilege was fortified by express 
grants which the evidence shewed to have been respected by .the 
Londoners until within a few years after the accession of Henry 7. 
As the poverty of the towns increased the mischief spread. Two years 
after this case came before the Star Chamber the legislature interfered. 
A Bill introduced into the House of Commons set forth in its pre- 
amble that the towns throughout the kingdom * lately more and 
oderwyse than in tymes passed have distreyned levyed and taken of 
theym (Marchauntes Denysyns) a certeyn Costome called Skavage, 
oderwyse called Shewage, to ther gret charge and trouble, which 
Skavage was never used to be taken nor levyed but only of Mar- 
chauntes Straungers.' The penalty upon the offending oflScial was 
the heavy fine of 201. It is probable that this Bill, which passed 
into an Act intituled * De Scavagio non recipiendo de Subditis ' 
(19 Hen. 7, c. 8), was intended to include the City of London. It 
appears, however, in the statute-book with a concluding proviso 
originally written upon a separate schedule annexed to the Act. By 
this proviso the Corporation of London were exempted from the 
prohibition of the Act, subject to the fixing of their rates of scavage 
by the King in Council. Thus London gained at the expense of the 



INTRODUCTION cxliii 

rest of the kingdom, obtaining a statutory recognition of a right 
which it had hitherto only ventured fitfully to assert. 

The same disposition to increase tolls is shewn in the case of Couper oouper «. 

Chnvaax. 

V. Gervaux (pp. 86-38), where a goldsmith of London complains of the 
dues demanded from him at Salisbury Fair. In this as in other dis- 
putes the violence exhibited by the parties at variance seems dispro- 
portionate to the importance of the issue. It must, however, be 
remembered that the officials of a town had an immediate personal 
interest in keeping up the municipal revenues, seeing that they were 
the source of the payment of the fee-farm, often highly onerous, de- 
ficiency in which they were compelled to make up at their own expense. 
A striking instance of this is to be found among the records of the Cor- 
poration of Gloucester, a town whose exactions are the cause of a com- 
plaint printed in this volume. In 1487-88 they petitioned the King, 
on the ground of the decay of the town, for a remission of their ' grevis 
fee firme of Ixv. li.' They stated that the then bailiffs and those for 
several preceding years had been compelled to contribute 30Z. of that 
sum out of their own goods, ' by reason whereof very many of the 
burgesses who seemed able from their good manners & means to 
fill the office of bailiff have left the town with their goods when they 
thought the time was coming for them to be elected bailiffs & 
others intend following their example, so that in a short time there 
will be no men left in the town with sufficient means to fill the said 
office.' ' 

It is noteworthy that in the case of Couper v. Gervaux no claim is 
set up by the plaintiff as a London citizen or by the City of London 
itself to try the case by the City's representatives upon the spot.^ 
Either this claim was not stirred because there were no wardens of 
the City at the fair of Salisbury, though that was one of the great 
fairs of the kingdom, or because the City's privilege was in desuetude, 
presumably as being found to conflict with the local franchises. The 
17 Edward 4, c. 2, recites that to every fair * est de droit apper- 
teignant un Court de Peepowdrez a ministrer en ceo due Jus- 
tice en cell partie ; enquele Court il y ad toutz jours este accustume 
que chacune persone venaunt as tielx feirrez arroit loial remedie ' 

* Beoords of Corporation of Gloaoester, granted by charter that the same citizens 

Hist. MSS. Gomm. xii. Bep. pt. ix. p. 406. shall have their wardens of their citizens 

' * Because the citizens of London in all for the holding of such pleas as of ancient 

good & great fairs of England were wont times they have had, excepting pleas of the 

to have wardens of themselves to hold land & of the Grown.' 'Lib. Alb.' 40, 

pleas, concerning such citizens as shall 1 Ed. 1 ;Colthrop, * Liberties d^c. of London,' 

have conference to the said fairs : it is 1642, p. 13. 



Cxliv COUKT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

&c. Here is no mention of the privilege claimed by the City 
of London, notwithstanding that this Act regulated the Courts 
of Piepowder throughout the kingdom. In 1484 it was made per- 
petual by ' An Act for tryall of matters in Courtes of Pypowder held 
in fayres ' (1 Bichard 3, c. 6), again without any exception. 

whyte V. The great waterways of the country afforded an opportunity for 

Mayor of. * the exactiou of tolls which was not lost sight of by the municipalities 
of the riparian towns. In the Parliament of 1401 a petition had 
been addressed to the Crown by the counties of Salop, Hereford, and 
Stafford, complaining that whereas victuals had always been allowed 
to pass through Gloucester and Worcester duty free, so long as they 
were not offered for sale in these towns, extortionate tolls were being 
then demanded by their bailiffs.* The King returned the equivocal 
answer that there should be no departure from the customs hitherto 
observed, and that no extortion should be suffered. Possibly this 
; favourable attitude towards the two towns was prompted by the 
antipathy to the Welsh which marks the statutes of that parliament. 
In 1411 the burgesses of Gloucester themselves, supported by those 
of Bristol, petitioned the Crown against the inhabitants of Beaudely, 
of the county of Salop generally, and of Wales.^ These persons, 
according to their petition, combined together to force violently upon 
the merchants trafficking on the river the hiring of ' grosses bateux 
appellez Trowes ' in place of rafts called * flotes,' on which such goods 
as timber and fuel had been hitherto laden. The only answer vouch- 
safed was * soit fait come ad este usez devant ces heures,' and no 
statute was passed. But the three counties which had been peti- 
tioners in 1401 joined, by way of reprisal, in a cross-petition of the 
same session (1411) against the men of Gloucester and Worcester, 
adding on this occasion those of the town of Bridgnorth.' The 
Council therefore ordered the evidence for these exactions to be pro- 
duced, alleging that it had obtained the authority of Parliament to 
effect a final settlement of the disputes. Apparently the claims of 
the towns to tolls were settled, but the old quarrel about the * flotes ' 
and ' trows * revived. A petition was presented to Parliament in 
1427 complaining of the conduct of Welshmen and other dwellers in 
privileged places * where the king's writ runneth not,' "^ and asking 
* for a statute enforcing the undisturbed user of the river. But the 

* Rot. Pari. iii. 476, b. * The Marches of Wales. See Straunge 
» Jh. 666, b. V, Kenaston, p. 274. 

• lb. iu. 668, a. 



INTRODUCTION cxlv 

Lords Marchers were valuable supports of the English Grown, and 
the King, or rather his Council, refused the prayer.^ Two years later 
the men of Tewkesbury presented to Parliament a long petition in 
English.^ They set forth that the inhabitants of the Forest of Dene 
and the neighbourhood 'have come (being a) grete multitude of 
peple and routes of the Gommones of the same forest and of the 
Hundredes of Bledislowe and Wesebury with greete ryot and strengthe 
in maner of Werre, as Enemys of a straunge land,' and have de- 
stroyed their Trows and robbed them of their merchandise. A 
proclamation having been issued for their suppression served but to 
add to the number and violence of the rioters. Eight trows were 
despoiled and some of their crews drowned. The rioters * maneshud 
the owners of the saide goodes and the said trowmen that they sholde 
not be so tardy to carye no maner of vitaille by the seide streme for 
Lorde ne Lady.' The inhabitants of Tewkesbury petitioned, there- 
fore, that the Sheriff of Gloucestershire or the Bailiffs of Gloucester 
should be ordered to make proclamation for the restitution of the 
stolen goods ' with resonable amendes.' In default of restitution and 
of the arrest and imprisonment of the offenders in Gloucester Gastle, 
the Statute of Winchester should be enforced against the Hundred in 
which the robbery was committed. 

By this statute, the great Police Act of Edward 1 passed in 1285, 
it was provided that the Hundred which failed to arrest felons guilty 
of offences within its borders should be answerable for any robberies 
they might have committed as well as for damages (18 Ed. 1, c. 2). 
The statute had been repeatedly confirmed, and by an Act of 1388 
was ordered to be proclaimed four times a year in every hundred and 
market town.' It is evident, nevertheless, that in 1429, the year of 
this petition, it was again in desuetude. The petition was granted, 
and became the statute 8 Henry 6, c. 27. From the petition which fol- 
lowed two years later it appears that if the Act of 1429 had exercised 
some effect in England, it had been a failure in Wales. Doubtless 
this was due to the chaos involved in the jurisdiction of the Lords 
Marchers.* The petitioners, who seem to have been the inhabitants 
of Bristol, Gloucester, and Worcester, preferred a prayer revolutionary 
to the medieval sense of the importance of rights of jurisdiction. This 
was that the neighbouring counties might be made responsible. Par- 

' Bot. Pari. iv. 338, a. in 1328 (2 Ed. 8, Stat, of Northampton, 

* lb. 345, a. 0. 6), in 1331 (5 Ed. 3, o. U). in 1354 

' Complaint being made that the Statute (28 Ed. 3, c. 11), and in 1383 (7 Bioh. 2, 

of Winchester was neglected, its enforce- o. 6). 

ment was ordered in 1300 (28 Ed. 1, c. 17), * See pp. xciii-xov, supra. 



Cxlvi COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

liament was satisfied to proclaim the empty principle that the passage 
of the river was free to all, and to refer the complainants to their 
nugatory remedy by action * according to the course of the Common 
Law.' ^ The Government of Edward 4 may be inferred to have 
been successful in enforcing some degree of order from the change in 
the complaints as to impediments in the way of the free navigation of 
the Severn. That the previous outrages had caused a decline of its 
trade is evident from the statement of the next petition ^ (1464) that 
the banks of the tow-path, * called a lyne weye,' were overgrown with 
wood, timber, and bushes. Apparently the petitioners looked to the 
riparian owners to maintain a clear road, but they neglected the duty 
and contented themselves with the exaction of tolls. Their interests 
must be presumed to have been too powerful to meddle with. The 
petition was rejected. It was not till forty years later that the strong 
administration of Henry 7 ventured to deal with this old-standing 
grievance. In 1504 was passed the Act intituled *De Fluvio 
Sabrini.' ^ It set forth the previous complaints, the legislature's attempts 
to find a remedy, and, finally, the declaration of principle of the Act of 
1431 that the river was free. Notwithstanding this, the oflScers of the 
town of Gloucester and the city of Worcester had lately exacted impo- 
sitions from trows and boats passing through. A penalty of 201. was 
accordingly laid upon any person demanding such tolls, of which two- 
thirds should go to the King and the remainder to the party grieved 
or to the common informer. The only exceptions admitted were where 
riparian owners could shew damage done which justified a claim to 
compensation, and where any person or corporation could satisfy the 
Star Chamber before Ascension Day, 1505, of their right to take toll. 
The case of Whyte against the municipalities of Gloucester and 
Worcester, which arose out of these circumstances, differs from the 
other cases in this volume in that it is not a litigation. It is rather 
in the nature of an opposition to a Bill, since, under the Act of 1504, 
proof of right to take toll allowed by the Star Chamber would give it 
a parliamentary sanction. The case illustrates the incessant conflict 
of jurisdictions which furnished so much material for litigation in the 
Middle Ages ; the nature of the inland trade passing by the Severn ; 
the value to towns of the exemptions granted by their charters ; and 
the jealous conservation of the privileges of the City, whose allegiance 
so often determined the succession to the Crown, the City of London. 

* 9 Hen. 6, o. 6. mentioned. D. Barrington, * Observations 
' Rot. Pari. V. 569, b. on Ancient Statutes,' ed. 1796, p. 438, 

• 19 Hen. 7, c. 18. This is the earliest note w. 
statute in which the Star Chamber is 



INTRODUCTION cxlvii 

The concluding section of this Act gave rise to the proceed- 
ings before the Star Chamber, here printed under the titles of 
* The Petition of the Mayor &c. of Gloucestre,' ' The Petition of the 
Baillys & Citesyns of Worcestre,' and * Whyte against the Mayor & 
Burgesses of Gloucestre ' (pp. 209-226). The Act provided that any 
person or body corporate who could before Ascension Day (May 1), 
1505, ' make eny sufficiant profe and laufull title ' to any duty or 
imposition for vessels or goods passing on the Severn should receive a 
decree in their favour legalising the right claimed. The two petition- 
ing towns in these proceedings claimed dues by prescription and 
produced evidence in their favour. Just as at this present day a 
petitioner is heard against a private Bill, Thomas Whyte, a merchant, 
filed a Bill before the Star Chamber denying the prescription. That 
he was successful may be inferred from the Act 23 Hen. 8, c. 12 (1532), 
intituled * An Acte for takinge exaccions upon the pathes of Severne.' 
In the Act of 1504 nothing was said about paths. The petition, 
which is incorporated in the Act, forbids the taking of impositions 
&c. for vessels laden with goods or merchandise * caried or conveyed 
in and uppon the seid Byver and Water of Severn.' It is unfortunate 
that the decree of the Star Chamber is lost, but it is probable that» 
after the fashion of the statute, it embodied the petition or was per- 
haps restricted to a declaration that the towns of Gloucester and 
Worcester had shown no sufficient cause for exemption from the 
prohibition. From the Act of 1582 it appears that the dispute had 
been revived by the demand of a toll, not for passing on the water, 
but for the use of the towing-path. This demand that Act declared 
illegal, reserving a free towing-path, which it affirms to have been 
used of right from time immemorial, of a foot and a half broad on 
each side of the river, for the use of hauling vessels. 

Since the days before the Conquest the kings had endeavoured to i^Mincw 
secure uniformity of coinage and of weights and measures. A law of Jj^^^*^"^" 
Edgar ordered one currency for the kingdom and the use of the 
weights and measures customary at London and Winchester.^ They 
were to be tested by public authority.* The laws of William the 
Conqueror ' de mensuris et ponderibus ' (iii. 7) enacted ' quod habeant 
(civitates et burgi &c.) per universum regnum mensuras fidelissimas 
et signatas et pondera fidelissima et signata, sicut boni prsedecessores 
statuerunt.' ^ Richard I's Assize of Measures in 1197, therefore, only 

* 'Die Gesetze der Angelsachsen * (Leip- * Cnut*B 'Gesetze/ii. 9. Dejustopon- 

zig, 1858), p. 193. dere. lb. p. 274. 

» lb. p. 365. 



cxlviii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

added to the existing law the machinery for its enforcement, viz. the 
appointment of four or six men in each city, boroagh, and county to 
supervise its execution, with the forfeiture of chattels as a punishment 
for selling by unauthorised weights and measures.^ He also devised 
the maintenance of a standard at London, and, according to the 
citizens of London in 14 Ed. 2, ' omnes mensurse Anglise exami- 
natse fuerunt et factse Concordes et in Londoniis standarda regia 
posita.' ^ Even the itinerant justices, to whom in 1194 and 1196 the 
duty was entrusted of exacting the penalties, were reluctant to inter- 
fere with local usage. On the other hand, the Church strove to 
promote honest dealing in this as in other transactions,' though it 
left legislation and the execution of the laws to the secular authorities.^ 
An effort was made by Magna Carta "^ to check the confusion.^ 
The execution of this clause was vigorously taken up by Henry 8 
on his progresses. In 1228 he himself superintended the destruction 
of false weights and measures.^ His example was followed by 
Edward 1, who in 1303 ^ issued an ' Assisa de Ponderibus et 
Mensuris,' a complete statement of all the authorised weights and 
measures and their mutual relations. Under Edward 3 Parlia- 
ment took up the question with vigour. Standard weights and 
measures were to be sent into every county and two surveyors 
appointed in each to enforce the law.^ To this was added in 1367 
the provision of standard balances. ^^ In 1361 the King was em- 
powered to appoint justices in every county to inquire as to the 
enforcement of the statutes.^^ But every town felt the interference 
of the King to be an invasion of its liberties. The centre of trade, 

^ B. Hoveden, ' Cronica/ ed. W. Stubbs the Committee to enquire into the original 

(1868-71), iv. 33, 34. standards of weights and measures in this 

' * Liber Castumarom ' (Bolls Series, kingdom, and to consider the laws relating 

1860, ed. H. T. Biley), p. 883. thereto with the proceedings of the Hoase 

' ' Sententia exconmianicacionis. At the thereupon.' This report gives a list of 

begynnyng God and halekirk corses . . . statutes upon the subject, with remarks 

al tha that byes or selles with fals mesours upon some of them. See also a memorandimi 

or fals weghtes that es to say, bies with ane on the history of the Law of Weights and 

and selles with another. Also al tha that Measures, by Sir J. Popham, A-G (1581- 

falses the kings standard thaim wyting.' 1592) in S. P. Dom. Eliz. vol. 158. 66, 67 

MS. temp. 14th cent. Hist. MSS. Comm., (MS. B. O.). 

5th Beport, Append. (1876), p. 306. ' M. Paris, ' Hist. Min.' ii. 299 (ed. Sir F. 

* S. Thomas Aquinas, Summa seounda Madden, 1866). 

secundfB, qu. Ixxvii, Art. 2. See W. J. Ash- " This is the date assigned by G. Sohanz, 

ley, ' Economic Histoiy * (2nd ed. 1892), L i. * Englische Handelspolitik ' (1881, i. 573), 

178 <fec. upon whose sketch 1 have mainly relied ; 

* C. 35. Una mensura vini sit pei but in the Statutes of the Beahn it is 
totum regnum nostrum, et una mensura entered as * incerti temporis.' 

cervisiie, et una mensura bladi, scilicet ' 14 Ed. 3, st. 1, c. 12 (1340). See also 

quarterium Londoniense, et una latitude 25 Ed. 3, st. 5, c. 9 ; 27 Ed. 3, st. 2, c. 10 ; 

pannonmi tinctorum et russetorum et hal- 84 Ed. 3, c. 5 ; and 13 Bio. 2, st. 1, c. 9. 
bergettorum, . . . de ponderibus autem sit '" 31 Ed. 3, st. 1, o. 2. 

at de mensuris.' ^i 84 Ed. 8, c 6. 

* In 1758 was published * A Beport from 



INTRODUCTION cxlix 

the City of London, notwithstanding the formal adoption of its 
standards, was notoriously inclined to sharp practices. In 1284 
complaint was made that the citizens sold by one weight and bought 
by another,^ content to pass nagatory ordinances that weights and 
measures should conform to those of the King.^ Edward 2*s 
treasurer, Walter de Stapledon, distributed brazen standards of 
measures throughout England in 1820.' In 1844 the complaints 
of the exactions of the Boyal Commissioners in their execution of 
these laws compelled Edward 8 to withdraw their powers.'* Their 
place was taken in 1361 by the justices of the peace, who would 
naturally be more tender to local feeling.*^ The result was that in 
1889 the Commons again petitioned for the enforcement of the law. 
What slender hopes the Government entertained of arriving at 
uniformity is shewn by the statute which followed. While the heavy 
penalty was imposed of six months' imprisonment and twofold 
restitution to the complainant^ an exception was made in favour 
of Lancashire ' acause qen le dit Counte ad este de tout temps plus 
graunt mesure qe en ascun autre partie du roialme.'^ Even the 
law of Edgar, accepted as the law of the land during more than four 
centuries, failed to overcome the persistent vitality of local corn 
measures.® By an Act of 1429 * every city borough or town ' was 
ordered to provide itself with balances and weights at its own cost 
sealed and according to the common standard of the Exchequer,^ 
while the provisions of Magna Carta and of the Acts of Edward 1 
and Edward 8 and Richard 2 were confirmed. But four years later 
Government was again deploring the inefficacy of these measures, to 
remedy which it again resorted to improving the machinery for 
putting them into execution. Every mayor and justice of the peace 
was to be sworn to enforce the Acts.^^ Immediately after his acces- 
sion Henry 7 distributed standard weights and measures to every 
county ^^ and set up * King's Beams ' in a number of ports.^^ Neverthe- 
lesSy in 1491 Parliament declared again that these enactments had not 

" * Liber Albus * (ed. H. T. RUey, 1859), with the general economic policy of the 

p. 286. Middle Ages in favour of the consumer. 
« Jh, pp. 273, 278. • 15 Ric. 2, c. 4 (1391). It was thought 

' *Lib. Cust.' p. 382. necessary to mention that the mayor and 

* Bot. Pari. ii. 156, 166, although the sheritfs of London would be equally liable 
Commons had petitioned for the enforce- with the officials of other municipalities for 
ment of the law in 1343. lb. p. 141, a. the non-observance of the law. 

» 34 Ed. 8, c. 6. » 8 Hen. 6, c. 6 (1429). 

* The reason of this doubtless was that '<* 11 Hen. 6, c. 8 (1483). 

in the previous session the Conmions had " Dec. 30, 1485. Campbell, * Materials,' 

express^ the opinion that the existing fines i. 226 ; ii. 102. 

had proved useless. Bot. Pari. iii. 267, b. " Feb. 20, 1486. lb. i. 302 ; July 9, 1486 

' 18 Bic. 2, St. 1, c. 9 (1890). Bot. lb. 674. 
ParL iii 270, a. This was in accordance 



Cl COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

been duly executed. Apparently among other causes of their neglect 
was the omission of the towns to provide themselves with the 
standard weights and measures. * An Acte for Waightes & Mea- 
sures ' was therefore passed by which the duty was imposed upon 
the Crown of providing the chief officers of every city or borough 
with 'weightes and mesuris of brasse according to the very true 
standard.' ^ Possibly Henry 7's penuriousness indisposed him to 
bear the cost of carriage, for another Act with the same title, passed 
in 1496, recited that the former statutes had not been observed or 
kept, and ordered that the standard weights and measures should be 
delivered to the members of Parliament for conveyance. Weights 
of tin in Cornwall and Devonshire were exempted from the Act. 
Forty-three cities and boroughs were named in which the authorised 
standards were to be preserved. Penalties were inflicted for buying 
or selling by other weights and measures : 6«. 8rf. for the first offence, 
double penalty for the second, for the third 208. and the pillory.*'^ 
The standards were issued. They were speedily found to be defective, 
and by an Act of 1497 ' were ordered to be returned at the expense 
of the towns and new ones substituted. This measure appears to 
have proved so far effective that it was followed by a long period of 
legislative inactivity.** The secret of this success probably was that 
the statute imposed upon the municipal authorities the duty of 
examining, testing, and weighing the weights and measures twice a 
year and of destroying those that were faulty, coupling with it the 
privilege of receiving the pecuniary penalties inflicted. The Lon- 
doners continued unreformed,*^ for by charters of 1819, 1400, 1509, 
and 1518 the duty of regulating their weights and beams was formally 
granted to the mayors &c., and they retained the practice of using 
double weights, ' cest assaver un plus grande pur achater et un autre 
meindre pur vendre,' denounced by the statute of 1840 (14 Ed. 8, 
St. 1, c. 12). This is precisely the complaint made by the lead miners 
of Yorkshire in their case against the merchants of York. Where 
the classes whose interests were involved controlled the execution oi 
the statutes it was easier to pass Acts of Parliament than to enforce 
them. Even as late as the reign of Elizabeth the merchants of the 

' 7 Hen. 7, c. 3 : * An Aote for Waightes ounee than the old English pound, and a 

and Measures.' bushel one-sixth part larger than the old 

* 11 Hen. 7, c. 4 : * An Acte for Wayghtes English bushel measure, 
and Measures.* * The towns themselves replaced their 

' 12 Hen. 7, c. 5. According to a paper, worn-out standards. See S. P. Doni. Hen. 

in * Philosophical Transactions,' vol. Izv. 8, i. 18 (1509). 

pt. i. Paper III. (London, 1776), Henry 7, * For their fraudulent dealings in liquid 

at this time introduced the Troy pound, mawures see S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, v. 1716. 
which was heavier by three-quarters of an 



INTRODUCTION cli 

Low Countries were still complaining that they lost ' 12 in the 
hundred by diversetye of waightis, being bound to sell by the Quenes 
waightis and to bye by the waightis of London.' * Elsewhere the 
Crown appointed commissioners from time to time to make inquisition 
into false weights and measures.^ 

Before the accession of Henry 7 the growing power of the Butiond. 
gilds had been assailed by the legislature. In 1437 an Act was ^°"*®°" 
passed (15 Hen. 6, c. 6) reciting that ' the Masters, Wardens & 
people of divers Gilds, Fraternities & other Companies Licorporate, 
dwelling in divers parts of the realm, oftentimes by colour of rule & 
governance and other terms in general words to them granted & 
confirmed by charters & letters patents of the King's progenitours, 
make among themselves divers unlawful & unreasonable ordinances 
as well of such things whereof the cognisance, punishment & 
correction only pertain to the King, Lords of franchises & other 
persons & whereby our sovereign lord the King & others be dis- 
herited of their franchises & profits, as of things which sound in 
confederacy for their singular profit & common damage to the 
people.' It was therefore provided that all such gilds should bring 
their letters patents and charters ' to be registered of record before 
the Justices of the Peace in the counties or before the chief governors 
of the cities, boroughs & towns' to which they belonged. This 
statute was to stand during pleasure, and presumably expired with 
the deposition of Henry 6, since the preamble of the Act of 1504 
alleges that it had already done so. The Act of Henry 6 respected 
municipal privilege by retaining to the municipal corporations the 
right of approval of amendments introduced into their statutes by the 
gilds within their jurisdiction. But as these corporations would 
themselves be composed of members of such gilds, they were likely 
to be favourable to changes proposed by them. At any rate the 
preamble of the Act intituled * De privatis & illicitis statutis non 
faciendis,' passed in 1504 (19 Hen. 7, c. 7), recites that since the 
expiration of the Act of 1487 * divers & meny ordinaunces have ben 
made be meny & divers private Bodys Corporate within Citie 
Townes & Boroughes contrarie to the Kinges prerogatyfe his Lawes 
& the Comon weyll of his Subgiectes.' The particulars of the 
ordinances which the Parliament of 1487 considered 'unlawful & 
unreasonable ' are not precisely specified by the Act of that year. 

' * A briefe deolaracion of such thingiB as c. vii. fo. 98. G. Schanz, ' Engligche Han- 

the marchauntis of the Lowe Gountrye delspolitik ' (1881), ii. 879. 
fynde them selves greved with their using ' E.g. in 1621, S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, iii. 

in Englande.' Brit. Mus. Cotton MS. Vesp. 1262. 



clii COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

But the omission is curiously filled up in the preamble of the statute 
of 1504, which, professing to recite the tenour of the former Act, inter- 
polates the words ' as well in pricis of weyres as other thinges.* The 
second clause of the Act of 1504 discloses the opinion of the Govern- 
ment of Henry 7 as to the cause of the innovations it deplored. 
' It is enacted that none of the same bodies Corporate take uppon 
theym to make eny actes or ordinaunces to restreyne eny person or 
persones to sue to the Kynges Highnesse or to eny of his Courtes for 
due remedy to be had in their causes, ne putte ne execute eny penaltie 
or punishment uppon eny of them for eny suche sute to be made, 
uppon peyn of forfeiture of xl li. for every tyme that they doo the 
contrarie.' Of the alternative modes of redress offered to the 
aggrieved complainant the former evidently indicates the King's 
Council, whether sitting in the Star Chamber or elsewhere. 

Not satisfied to enforce penalties upon infractions of the law, the 
Act of 1504 sought to bring the gilds, and incidentally the munici- 
palities, under the control of the Central Government. They were 
prohibited from making any ordinances, or even acting upon those 
already in force, until * the same actes or ordinaunces be examyned 
& approved by the Chaunceller Tresorer of Englonde & cheffe 
Justices of ether Benche or thre of them, or before both the Justices 
of Assises in ther cyrcuyte or progresse in that Shyre wher suche 
actes or ordinaunces be made ' upon pain of a like forfeiture of 401. 

This statute, both by its encroachment upon the customary right 
of the municipalities to fix prices and by the transfer to the royal 
judges of so important a part of their traditional powers, marks an 
important step in the increasing centralisation of the Government. 
No doubt it served the ancillary purpose of bringing in fees to the 
Exchequer. It has even been maintained that this was its real object. 
The historian of the Leathersellers* Company of London tells us that 
the Company * soon felt itself exposed to heavy penalties, under this 
statute, for acting on the old ordinances.' ^ Agreeable as such a 
design would be to the general fiscal policy of Henry 7, it scarcely 
furnishes an adequate explanation of the Act of Henry 6. Nor, in 
the case of the Leathersellers, does it appear that the Company was 
actually fined, though probably a fee was charged upon the presenta- 
tion for approval of its new ordinances in February 1509. The fact 
is that as the exactions of the gilds were a chief cause of the decay 
of the towns which had been for some time in progress, they grew in 
proportion as that decay contracted the area of their resources. The 

' Blackf ' History of the Leathersellers* Company * (1871 p. 45. 



INTRODUCTION cliii 

Act of 1581, intituled the ' Acte concernyng the avoydyng of Exac- 
cyons levyed upon Prentyses ' (22 Hen. 8, c. 4) regards these 
exactions as an evasion of the Act of 1604. The language of Bacon, 
in speaking of this statute of 1504, is scarcely too strong, that the 
gilds were * fraternities in evil.' ^ That Government, in clipping 
their wings, had the sympathy of the poorer artisans is apparent 
from another statute of the session of 1504. The 19 Hen. 7, c. 17, 
* De Worsted Sherers,' repeals the privileges granted to the worsted 
shearers of Norwich by 11 Hen. 7, c. 11, on the ground, inter alia, 
' that they will nott admitte eny man to the sheryng of Worstedes 
though he have suflBcient connyng therin wythowte he wyll compoune 
wyth them & make grett & importable fynes, by force wherof divers 
& meny of the Shore men lately inhabitauntes of the seid Citie be 
departed owt of the same Citie into the Contre and so divers and meny 
howeses wythin the seid Citie be now unoccupyed & decayed & dayly 
more ar lyke to be, to the grete desolacion of the seid Citie ' &c. 
The statute ' For Apprentices ' of 1536 (28 Hen. 8, c. 5) and the case 
of Butlond and others v. Austen and others (pp. 262-271), brought 
before the Star Chamber in 1508, furnish evidence to the same effect. 
According to the complainants in this case, the defendant when an 
oflScial of the Founders' Company in 1505 compelled the members of 
the Company to sell their wares to him at a price fixed by himself, 
afterwards reselling them to the public at an enhanced rate. As this 
proceeding was based upon ' an acte ' of the governing body, it fell 
within the statute of 1504. In accordance with the provisions of that 
Act, informations were laid in the Court of Exchequer by aggrieved 
founders, and notwithstanding the fact that, in conformity with the 
privilege of the City of London, the case was tried before a City jury, 
the defendants to one information were fined 401. and costs. To 
meet these expenses they, with the assent of the governing oligarchy, 
sold the plate and jewels of the Company. These it was the prayer 
of the petitioners to the Star Chamber that they should be compelled 
to restore. In this case we know from the annals of the Founders' 
Company that the plaintiifs were successful. 

There are a few interesting sidelights upon the period cast by 
these cases. Among these is one derived from the investigation of 
the lives of those persons of consequence who have not found a place 
in the pages of the ' Dictionary of National Biography.' The fall of 
Bichard 8 may be inferred from these to have been due to a great 
uprising of public opinion, provoked by the general belief that he was 

' Histoiy of King Henry 7 * (ed. Spedding and Heath, 1870), p. 228. 



cliv COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the murderer of his nephews. In no fewer than ten instances there 
appears ground for belief that he was deserted by his political par- 
tisans, some of them the representatives of influential Yorkist families 
who had long fought for their party in the field. These instances are 
those of Sir Nicholas Mountgomery (p. 58, n. 8) ; Sir James Blount 
(p. 64, n. 2) ; Sir William Martyn (p. 81, n. 13) ; Thomas Kebell 
(p. 131, n. 4) ; Edmund Hampden (p. 155, n. 8) ; Sir John Hare- 
court (ib.) ; Thomas Lygon (p. 216, n. 3) ; Sir Richard Dalabere 
(p. 234, n. 2) ; and Sir John Lyngen, father and son (p. 235, n. 5). 

Of the state into which the religious houses had fallen we get a 
glimpse in the two cases of the Abbey of Bath and the Abbey of 
Malmesbury. In the case of the Abbey of Eynesham the defences of 
the house and the weapons at the disposal of the monks illustrate 
the lawlessness of the times. The servants here, as elsewhere, in 
attendance upon the monks seem to have been disproportionate in 
number to the community. Even the College of Stratford-on-Avon was 
able to furnish a contingent upon occasion to put down a riot (p. 233). 
This was doubtless one of the means whereby the monasteries wasted 
their substance in imitation of the feudal lords. The Prior of Bath, 
who pleaded poverty, was accustomed, as we learn from the Abbot of 
St. Augustine's, Canterbury, to ride * with xviij horses or theraboute 
and his seruantes all in one lyvery or clothing' (p. 34). In the 
instances of Bath, St. Augustine's, Canterbury, Malmesbury, and 
Eynesham the names indicate that the religious houses recruited the 
ranks of their members from dwellers in the neighbourhood. 

Although riots were of every-day occurrence and weapons were 
drawn on slight provocation, drunkenness by no means played the 
part in the fifteenth century that it does in affrays of to-day. There 
is only one case in which it is mentioned. That is in the case of the 
Abbot of Eynesham against Sir Robert Harecourt, in which an assault 
is said to have been provoked by abusive language on the part of a 
drunken servant of the monastery (p. 161). 

In conclusion I desire to express my thanks to Professor F. W. 
Maitland, of Cambridge, both for kindly reading my proofs and for 
valuable information and suggestions, as well as to Mr. E. Salisbury, 
of the Public Record OflBce, for his patience and skill in deciphering 
portions of documents obliterated by time and ill-usage, and other- 
wise aiding my researches. 

I. S. LEADAM. 
Tbmplx : August 1908. 



SELECT OASES 

BEFORE THE 

KING'S COUNCIL IN THE STAR CHAMBER 

COMMONLY CALLED 

THE COUET OF STAE CHAMBEE 

EXCESTBE, MAYOR &c. OP, v. STODEN AND OTHERS.^ 

^ To the kyng oiire Soueraigne lord * 

1477 Shewyth vnto your highnesse your trew liegemen and Subgettes 
the May re Baillifs and comynaltie of your Cite of Excestre in the 
Counte of Deuons ' greuously eompleynynge, that where oone John 
Stoddon Richard Tumour * Thomas Penhall Water Kent Symon Davy 
Robert Crisshaue William Seyngyll ^ John Martyn Thomas Blakschawe 
and John Tylham of the seid Cite Tayllours confedered and accom- 
paigned with dyuers other mysdoers and riotous persones beyng of 
the mystere of Tayllours withyn the seid Cite and brokers of your 
peas, in manor of werre arrayed with force, that ys to say jakkes,^ 
doublettes of defence, Swerdes, Bokelers, Gley ves ® and Staves and 
other weapons defensible, the Saturday nexte after the fest of Seynt 
Marke last passed ^ at Excestre aforesaid in riotous wyse made assaute 
vppon oone Thomas Davy of the seid Cite and hym bete wounded and 

> Wrongly sorted as S.C.P. Hen. 8, Smith, » Early English Gilds' (E.E.T.S. 

Bundle 26, No. 393. vol. xl. 1870, p. 805). 

' See Introd., p. xiv, sapra. * * Jack, a kind of sleeveless tanic or 

■ Apparently a late use of the A.-S. jacket formerly worn by foot soldiers and 

genitive. No such instance appears in others, usually of leather quilted, and in 

Maetzner's English Grammar (transl. by later times often plated with iron.' J. A. H. 

C. J. Grece, 1874), iii. 306. Murray, Eng. Diet. 8.v. 

* This name and that of William Seyn- ' Glaive, gleyve, &q. A name given at 

gyU afford the clue to the date of this case, different periods to three distinct kinds of 

which, as will be seen from tiie reference, weapons, viz. lance, bill,and sword. Ibid.s.v. 

has been sorted among the papers of In this context it would probably be a biU 

Henry 8. The case was heard at West- or halbert, a common meaning of the word 

minster before the King (Edward 4^ in in the fifteenth century. 

Council, and the judgement delivered on ' St. Mark's Day is April 25. This was 

February 22, 1477, 16 Ed. 4, at the prayer Saturday, April 29, 1475. See B. and S. 

of Bichard Toumour and William Sengill, Izacke, 'Antiquities of Exeter' (1724), 

proctors and attorneys of the Master and p. 89. 
Wardens of the Taylors. See Toulmin 



2 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

evill entretid, that he was in dispayre and jupardie of his lyfe and so 
manassed and put hym in suche fere that he dar not dwell withyn the 
seid Cite And also the seid mysdoers and riotours contynuyng their 
vnlaufuU confederacy and mysdoyng, assembled theym the Fryday 
next after " the seid fest of Seynt Marke in the seid Cite with grete 
force and in riotous wyse came to the house of oone Bichard Longe 
and there made assaute vppon hym beyng in his house manassyng to 
sle hym without he wold be of their confederacy or els departe oute 
of the seid Cite and dwell not withyn it, and this the seid mysdoers by 
coloure of youre lettres patentes for theym and other of the seid 
mystere opteigned contrarie to the old libertees customes and laufuU 
vsages of the seid Cite had and vsed, accompaigneth theym with many 
evyll disposed and nasty persones and makyth dayly dyuers con- 
uenticles confederacions and vnlaufull assembles contrarie to your 
lawes, disobbeying the seid Maire and other officers of the seid Cite 
and woll not be correcte by theym to the grete disturbance of youre 
liege people and of youre peas withyn the seid Cite and in sub- 
uersion of the old libertees customes and rules vsed and had for the 
welle peas and good gouernell ^ of the same Cite, not oonly to evill and 
perillous example, but also fynally to the distruccion of the seid Cite, 
without youre good grace beshewyd in this behalfe, it Please therefor 
your highnesse of youre most habundant grace to considre the 
premysses and theruppon forasmoche as the seid John Stoddon 
Richerd Turnour and John Tylham be here *^ withyn youre Cite of 
London to commaunde theym by a seriant of Armes ** to appere afore 
youre highnesse and the lordes of youre most honourable Councell to 
Aunswere to the premysses. And ouer this it please youre good 
grace to graunte seuerall lettres of privie seall directe to the other of 
the seid mysdoers commaundyng theym by the same to appere afore 
youre highnesse and the lordes of youre seid Councell at a certeyn 
day to Aunswere to the premysses, And ouer that such correccion to 
be had in thus *^ behalf as it may be an example to other so mys- 
doynge, And thus for the loue of God. 

Indorsed. The maire and bailiffes of the Citee 
of Excestre versus John Stoddon 
Bichard Tumour and other of the same. 

' The context seems to indicate that the city, temp. Elizabeth, states that two years 

Friday next after the Saturday following elapsed between the riots and the judgment. 

St. Mark's Day is intended— i.e. May 5. Toulmin Smith, p. 302. Large expenses 

* More commonly governail, government. were incurred by the Corporation in getting 

^^ It would seem from this that the evidence and making journeys to London, 

plaintiffs had promise of an immediate * pro materia Cissorum ' (id. p. 304). 

hearing. The historian of Exeter, John " See p. 247, n. 9. Also Introd., p. xxvi. 

Vowell (alias Hoker), Chamberlain of the *^ Sic. 



EXCESTRE, MAYOR &c. OF, V. STODEN AND ANOTHER 3 

B. This is the Aunswere of John Stoden and Richard Tour- 
nour to the bill of compleint of the Maire Bailliffes and 
Gominaltie of the Cite of Exceter. 

The seid John Stoden and Richard Tonrnour seyen that as for 
eny thyng snrmitted to be doone by them or eny of theym with force 
and armes riotously or a geynest the kynges peace they be therof not 
gyltye And that they be redy to prove by all snche meanes and weyes 
as your wysedomes and good lordeshippes shall assigne And as for 
eny thyng surmitted to be doone by them to the seid Thomas Davy 
and Richard Longe they seye that the kyng oure soueraign lorde of his 
grace especiall and for othere diuerse consideracions hym movyng by 
his lettres patentes ^ redi to be shewed among othere thynges graunted 
to his liege men of the mistere of taillours within the Cite of Exceter 
that they of theym self and othere myght make and stablisshe for euer 
A Gylde or a Fratemite in the worshipp of Seint John the Baptist * 
And that Gylde or Fratemite soo vnyed ' founded create erecte and 
stablisshed have hold and the same enyoye to theym and theire suc- 
cessours for euer to endure And that they the same Gylde or Frater- 
nite may encresse and augment as often shall please or shalbe nedefull 
to theym for the gouernaunce kepyng and regiment of the seid Gylde or 
Fratemite imperpetuyte as it shall best please theym And ouer that 
oure seid soueraign lord of his habundaunt grace by his seid lettres 
patentes hath graunted to the seid maister and wardens and here ^ suc- 
cessours that they the foreseid Gylde Fratemite or Craft within the 
seid Cite and in the suburbies of the same may ordeign and rule and 
the defaictes of the same and of here seruauntes by the menyng of the 
worthiest and most sufficient men of that Craft to correcte and amend 
And also that the seid maister and wardens and theire successours 
maisters and wardens of the foreseid Fratemite for the tyme beyng 
for euer haue and make full serche in and of the seid Craft And all 
othere persones wheche bene or shalbe priuilegied with the seid Craft 
within the seid Cite of Excetour and the Suburbies of the same and 
of suche Craftes as they or eny of theym vsen or vseth or before tymes 
haue vsed And all defautes amonge theym founden after theire dis- 
cression by the surveieu of the mayre of the seid Cite for the tyme 
beyng thei may correcte and reforme, After whech graimtes so made 

* These are dated November 17, 1466 Thomas White, founded St. John Baptist's 

Cal. of Patent KoUs, Ed. 4, 1461-67, CoUege, Oxford, 
p. 643). The tenour of the patent is cor- ' Unyed, united. 

rectly set forth by the defendants. * Obsolete form of the possessive 

' A patron saint of Tailors, e.g. of the pronoun, 3rd pi. See J. A. H. Murray, 

Merohant Taylors' Company of London, Eng. Diet. s.v. * Her.' 
a former master of which company, Sir 

b2 



4 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

and notwithstondyng the same the maire and the Bailliffes of the 
same Citee nowe beyng will not sufifre the seid maister and wardens 
to plede or implede eny persone within the Courte of the same Citee 
nor in anny Accion to Appere by the name of there corporacion con- 
trarie to the la we and all maner justice And for asmuche as the seid 
Thomas Dauy and Bichard Longe occupieden and excersised the 
mistere and craft of Tayllours within the said Cite And that it was 
enformed the seid John Stoden than beyng maister of the said 
mistere And Richard Tournour than beyng oone of the wardens of 
the same mistere that the seid Thomas and Richard Longe occupied 
the seid mistere and were not of connyng nor able to vse the seid 
mistere and also mysse vsed the same to the gret hurte of the kynges 
Liege peple Thei for the welt of the same peple accordyng to the 
seid lettres patentes come to the dwellyng houses of the seid Thomas 
Dauy and Richard Longe within the seid Citee in pesible wyse to 
serche and see howe and in what maner of wyse they occupied and 
excersised the seid mistere And than and there willed And on the 
kynge oure soueraign Lorde is behalve chargied theym that thei shuld 
occupie and excersise trulie the seid mistere soo that the kynges Liege 
people were not by them desceyved And theruppon the maire of the 
seid Citee and Baillififes of the same by the sturryng of the seid 
Thomas Davy and Richard Longe with gret multitude of people 
assembled with gret force and in riotouse wyse assauted the seid John 
and Richard Tournour soo that they were in gret fere of their lyves 
And yitt dailie contynue in theire malice soo that the seid John and 
Richard Tournour dare not abide and dwell in the seid Citee for fere 
of their lyves ^ All wheche matiers the seid John Stoden and Richard 
Tournour be redy to proue as youre gret wisdames and Lordeshippes 
will a ward And prayeth that they maye be dismissed fro this Courte 
as all good feith and trought require And that your Lordeshippes 
wold cause the seid maire and Bailliffes to content vnto the seid John 
and Richard Tournour theire costes and exspences that they have 
wrongfully susteyned in this behalve And also to comaund the seid 
maire Bailliffes and Cominaltie and eueryche of theym to kepe the 
kyngis peace ayenst the seid John and Richard Tournor vppon suche 
a peyne as shalbe thought by your gret wysdomes most requisite and 
behofull in that be halve And this for the love of Jhesu and in the 
wey of Charitee. 

* Retaliatory violence was inflicted by daced by the Ciorporation to renounce the 
the Gild on those membere who were in- Gild. See Toolmin Smith, p. 823. 



EXCESTHE, MAYOR &c. OF, V. STODEN AND ANOTHER 5 

0. This ys the Beplicacion of the Maire Baillifes and 

Gominalte of the Cite of Excestre to the Aunswere of 
John Stoddon & Richard Turnour. 

The seid Maire Baillifes and Gominalte sayen that the seid 
Aunswere is insufficient to put theym to Aunswere vnto, Wherfor 
they pray that for the nonsufficiente therof, that the said John and 
Bichard may be punysshed accordyng to their deserte &c. And ouer 
this the said Maire BaiUifes and Gominalte sayen that the seid John 
Stoddon and Bichard Turnour bene gylte of the riottes brekyng and 
disturbaunce of the Eynges peas in maner and forme as ys allegged in 
their said bille, and that the said Gite is an old Gite and of tyme that 
no mynde ys hath bene corporat of Maire Baillifes and Gominalte/ 
And that the Maire and BaiUifes of the same Gite for the tyme 
beyng by all the said tyme haue vsed and had all serches correccion 
and punysshement of all maner offences and defaltes by any persone as- 
well artificers as other done withyn the liberie of the said Gite, and 
in like wyse the Beuerend Fader in God the Bysshoppe of Excestre 
and his predecessours withyn their fee called Seynt Stevynes fee 
withyn the same Gite, and also the Dene and Ghapiter of Excestre 
and their predecessours withyn their fee callid Seynt Sydwellis fee in 
the Suburbes of the said Gite by their officers by all the said tyme 
haue vsed and held serches correccion and punysshement of all 
defautes and offences done by any persons artificers or other withyn 
the same fees, so forasmoche as the said John Stoddon and Bichard 
Turnour claymeth in their seid Aunswere suche serches correccion 
and punycion withyn the seid Gite and fees by colour of the Kynges 
lettres patentes,^ it apperith that it is contrarie to the Gustomes 
libertees and vsages of the seid Gite and fees and grete derogacion of 
the seid Bysshoppe Dene and Ghapiter and of the seid Maire Ballifes 
and Gominaltie and likely moche more hereafter to be if due remedy 
theryn be not had. Wherefor forasmoche as the said John and 
Bichard confessith and withsaith not the mater comprised in the 
seid bille of compleynt nor aunswerith to the riot manassyng and 
evyll entretyng of the said Thomas Davy and Bichard Longe namyd 
in the said bille, the said Maire Baillifes and Gominalte prayen that 
they may be punysshed accordyng as Bight requyrith. And ouer this 

^ This is not strictly true. The first The time of legal memory refers to 1 B. 1 
Mayor of Exeter appears in 1206, and no (1189), 'Coke upon Littleton,' 115a; Black- 
charter survives to explain how the cor- stone, * Commentaries,' Introd. § iii. 
porate * Major, Ballivi, et Conmiunitas ' ' * And they shall have full scrutiny of 
came to succeed the Propositus (E. A. the mistery within the city and suburbs,* 
Freeman, * Exeter ' [4th ed. 1895], p. 59). Lett. Pat. November 17, 1466. 



h-^^ 



6 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the said Maire Baillifes and Gominalte sayen in all thyngs as they 
haae allegged in their said bille. Without that they made any 
assaute or manassed the said John Stoddon and Richard Turnour in 
maner and forme as is supposed in the seid Aunswere. All whiche 
maters the said Maire BailUfes and Gominalte bene redy to proue as 
shall to youre good Lordshippes and gret Wysedomys bethought 
resonable. 



TAYLLOUR v. ATT WELL. 



A» 



To the kyng our Souereyne lorde and to the 
lordys of his most noble Councell 

1482 Mekely besechith your highnesse John Tayllour^ one of the 
yomen of your most honorable Chamber to reduce vnto your gracyous 
remembrance that, Wher the sayde John your seruaunt of late 
compleyned and shewed vnto your goode grace being at your palace 
of Westminster that he beinge in your Counte of Deuonshir makyng 



» S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 18. Wrongly 
sorted. A case before the King and 
(Council, temp. Ed. 4. This MS. is much 
faded in parts. 

« John Tayllour or Taillour, * the 
younger,* merchant of Exeter (Cal. of Pat. 
Bolls, Ed. 4, 1476-85, p. 262). From a 
pardon of June 22, 1489 (Campbell, 
* Materials,* ii. 454) we know that he was a 
yeoman of the chamber to Edward 4 and 
Ricliard 8. He may perhaps, therefore, be 
identified with John Taillour, * the king's 
servant,* who was appointed on DecembKBr 
3, 1478, forester of Charlewode and bailiff 
of Upton-on-Sevem, Worcestershire, during 
the minority of Edward, son of George, late 
duke of Clarence (Pat. Bolls, Ed. 4, p. 129). 
Clarence had been executed in the pre- 
vious February, when his son Edward, 
earl of Warwick was only three years of 
age. Taillour, again described as *the 
king's servant,* made good use of his oppor- 
tunities at Court. He was probably a 
valuable supporter of the dynasty, for Exeter 
was a notoriously Lancastrian town (see 
E. A. Freeman, * Exeter * [1895] in the * His- 
toric Towns * series, p. 91). On March 3, 
1481, he was granted the lucrative office of 
surveyor of the customs and subsidies and 
of the customers and controllers in the 
ports of Pole, Exeter, Dertmouth, Plym- 
mouth, Fowy, and Briggewater, and ports 
and places annexed to them, with a salary 
of 202. yearly, and a moiety of the for- 
feitures seized by him (Cal. Pat. Bolls, 
1476-85, p. 236. Enrolled in Exch. K. B. 
Mem. Boll, 21 Ed. 4, E. T. m. vi.). In the 
following year * as John Tuillour, of Exeter, 



the younger, merchant,* surveyor of cus- 
toms, (fee., as above set out, he received a 
general pardon, except in respect of dues 
from the customs to the Exchequer. He 
then appears as also holding another office, 
that of keeper of the seal for the subsidy 
and ulnage of cloths in the county of Devon 
(Cal. Pat. Bolls, p. 262, February 10, 1482). 
On February 19, 1482, he received licence, 
notwithstanding the Act 20 Hen. 6, c. 5, to 
trade in tin, lead, and other merchandise 
(Exch. K. B. Mem. 191, 22 Ed. 4, Inter 
Brevia, m. xi. dors.). This licence was again 
enrolled in M. T. 22 Ed. 4, m. xiii. dors. 
(1482), the term in which this petition was 
filed, which shows that he had retained the 
king*s favour. See also ibid. m. xxxiii. 
October 26 ; ibid. dors. (November 30) ; ibid, 
m. XXXV. (November 16). He rendered his 
accounts as usual in Hil. term, 22 Ed. 4 
(1488), ibid. Inter Communia M. T. and 
Inter Brevia E. T. 22 Ed. 4. He served 
the office of bailiff of Exeter in 1475, 
but it is perhaps a symptom of the un- 
popularity of his politics that he was never 
mayor (B. Izacke, * Antiquities of Exeter * 
[1724], p. 89). Within a few months 
(December 7, 1485) of the accession of 
Henry 7, his place of surveyor of customs 
was taken from him and granted to James 
Boneython ' for services done to the king, 
as well in the parts beyond the sea as 
within this realm,* clearly a political ap- 
pointment (Campbell, * Materials,* i. 201). 
The charge here brought against Tayllour 
is in respect of a transaction by his deputy 
during his occupancy of the survcyorsliip 
(see lutrod., p. Ixxiv). From the general 



TAYLLOUR V. ATT WELL 



hym self redy towardys the See accordyng to your commaundment ^ 
was arrestid and put in troble by the Shirf of your sayde Shir * by 
virtue of a wrytt to hym directed oute of your Escheker apon a bylle 
vntruly made by one John Atwill ^ and Philipp Atwill ® surmysyng 
the sayd bille to be f ounde before William Huddesfeld your attourney "^ 
and other by virtu of a Commyssyon oute of your sayd Escheker to 



pardon granted to him on June 22, 1489, it 
is evident that on the death of Richard 3 
he lost his place of yeoman of the king's 
chamber (Campbell, 'Mat.' ii. 454). In 
this pardon he is styled * alias John Wals- 
hall, late of Sele, Devon, taylloor.' He 
was probably a * merohant-taylor,' a gild 
incorporated at Exeter in 1466 (Izacke, 
p. 63), and the name Taillour a trade 
name. See further Introd., pp. Ixxiii-lxxvii. 
' The date of the arrest was after Au- 
gust 26, 21 Ed. 4 (1481), and before Novem- 
ber 28, 22 Ed. 4 (1482). Possibly the 
plaintiff was repairing to the coast to take 
part in the expedition against Scotland in 
June, 1482. 

* Giles Daubney, esquire. Sheriff of 
Devon, 1482 (Izacke, Append. Catalogue 
of Sheriffs). 

* John Atwill, celebrated in the history 
of Exeter as having lived under five and 
been a magistrate under four kings (E. A. 
Freeman, * Hist. Exeter,' p. 90). His earliest 
appearance in office is in 1472 as one of the 
four bailiffs and steward of the city (Izacke, 
p. 88). In 1474 he was senior bailiff and 
receiver of the city's rents and revenues 
(ib.), and represented the Corporation in 
London during its controversy with the 
Tailors in that and the following year 
(' Early English Gilds ' in Early English 
Text Soc, vol. 40, p. 308 [1870]). He 
was mayor in 1476 (ib. p. 89), 1479 
(ib. p. 90), 1483 (ib. p. 91), 1492 (ib. p. 96) 
and 1496 (ib. p. 97). For the political 
discords attending this last election see 
Mrs. A. S. Green, *Town Life in the 
Fifteenth Century* (1894), ii. 173-181. He 
was probably a member of a family of 
gentry settled at Kenton, three miles S.S.W. 
of Topsham, in which family the Christian 
name of John was frequent (Harl. Soc. vi. 
12 ; T. Westoote, * View of Devonshire* [ed. 
Exeter], 1845, p. 612 ; J. Prince, * Worthies 
of Devon/ p. 15). In a general pardon 
dated July 4, 1482, he is styled * marchant ' 
of Exeter (Cal. Pat. Rolls, 1477-85, p. 
323). He was the leader of the oligarchical 
party in the city, and was apparently of 
Lancastrian politics. See Freeman, pp. 
93, 96, 147. But see 7 H. 7, c. 22 ; also 
pp. Ixxiii-lxzvii, supra. 

* Philip Atwill, one of the four bailiffs 
and steward of the city of Exeter in 1485 
(Izacke, p. 93). A merchant of Exeter 
(Cal. Pat. KoUs, 1476-85, p. 207). In the 



Exch. K. R. Mem. Roll, M. T. 21 Ed. 4, 
' Adhuc fines,' <&c., P. A. frequently appears 
as suing for half forfeitures arising out of 
the delinquencies of certain customs officers 
in Exeter and Dartmouth. 

' Sir William Huddesfeld, Hoddisfeild, 
Huttesfold, Hudysfeld, Hudisfeld, Hudders- 
field, &c., bom at Honiton (J. Prince, 

• Worthies of Devon ' [1701], p. 376), ad- 
mitted a member of Lincoln's Inn 1456 
(Line. Inn Admission Register, p. 13). In 
that and the following year he was Master 
of the Revels at the Inn (Black Books of 
Lincoln's Inn, i. 28), and was a Gover- 
nor of the Inn in 1461 (ib. p. 86). He was 
elected Reader of the Inn in Lent Term 
1464 (ib. p. 38), and again in 1469 (ib. p. 48) 
and 1476 (ib. p. 60), and allowed the privi- 
lege of two clerks with commons at fourteen 
pence a week each in 1464 (ib. p. 39). He 
was nominated on July 6, 1465, one of four 
commissioners to inquire into the lands 
and tenements held in Dorset by an at- 
tainted Lancastrian, Sir Thomas Fyndeme 
(Pat. RoUs, Ed. 4, 1461-67, p. 489). In 
1470 (October 18) he was nominated on a 
commission of Oyer and Terminer for 
Devonshire (Pat. Roll, p. 246). He was, 
after the restoration of Edward 4, again 
employed on commissions, generally in con- 
nexion with Devonshire (ib. pp. 288, 403, 
408). He was upon a commission in 1473 
(August 18) to inquire into the royal 
revenues from that county and from 
Somerset (ib. pp. 406, 407). He was ap- 
parently in favour with George, duke of 
Clarence, being nominated one of his 
feoffees to uses on his departure from Eng- 
land on May 2, 1475 (ib. p. 530), and he 
was continuously on the commission of the 
peace for Devonshire throughout the reign 
of Edward 4 (ib. p. 612). In return for his 
services he received on May 22, 1477, a 
grant of the reversion of the office of 
attorney-general (Pat. Rolls, 1477-85, p. 37). 
According to Prince (p. 376) he had al- 
ready been appointed solicitor-general. The 
evidence for this is an inscription stated by 
Prince to have been ' under his arms at his 
house at Shillingford.* On Clarence's at- 
tainder he was nominated a commissioner 
to inquire into his lands &c. in Devon- 
shire (ib. p. 110). He is first styled *the 
king's attorney ' in a patent dated Novem- 
ber 15, 1478 (ib. p. 137), and as such was 

* admitted to repasts ' at Lincoln's Inn on 



ssessss 



mm 



HK5SSK 



8 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



them directed to enquer of concelmentes towechyng your Gustumes 
and Subsidies, as more playnly hit apperyth in the sayde Com- 
myssyon,® and by the othes of John Kelly ® John Betty ^^ Richard 
Runwell" William Obley »* Thomas Hayly^' Roger Werth^* Robert 



February 1, 1479 (Black Books of Lincoln's 
Inn, i. 66). He was Recorder of Exeter 
1479-82 (Izacke, p. 60). On April 27, 
1483, he was appointed, Edward 5 being 
nominal king, a commissioner of sub- 
sidy for Devonshire (Pat. Rolls, 1477-85, 
p. 353). He was, however, deprived of the 
office of Attorney-General by the Protector 
Bichard, Duke of Gloucester, on May 
28 following (ib. p. 349). Nevertheless, 
Richard 3, after his accession, on August 1, 
in the same year (ib. p. 395), and on May 1, 
1484 ^ib. p. 447), nominated him again a 
commissioner of subsidy. That to some 
extent he was trusted by Bichard at this 
time may be inferred from the fact that on 
May 1, 1484, he was appointed a commis- 
sioner of array for Devonshire (ib. p. 397), 
and again on December 8, 1484 (ib. p. 490). 
This was in anticipation of the invasion of 
Henry, earl of Bichmond (Henry 7), which 
actually took place at the beginning of the 
following August. But he was evidently 
among those who transferred their allegiance 
to Bichard's successor, for soon after 
Henry 7*s accession he received a grant of 
. exemption for life, free from any fine or 
: ransom (&c., from being compelled to take 
I the office of serjeant at law (March 28, 
i 1486, Campbell, 'Mat.* i. 398), and his 
' epitaph states that he was a member of 
Henry 7'8 council (Prince, p. 376). Fur- 
ther, in August 1492, we first find him 
styled knight (Black Books of Line. Inn, 
i. 94). He vacated his chamber in the 
Inn in 1497 (ib. p. 110), doubtless on ac- 
count of advancing years. He died March 
20, 1499, in which year his will was proved, 
he being then resident at Dyttysham, 
Devonshire (J. C. C. Smith, * Index to 
Wills,» i. 287), but Westcote (1. c.) de- 
scribes him as of Shillingford, where he 
was buried, and where his brass is still to 
be seen in the church. He also held the 
manor of Mewshaue, land at Wythrygge, 
Devon (Inq. p. m. Henry 7, i. 173, 318), 
as well as at Widecombe-in-the-Moor and 
Farrindon (Prince, p. 376). According to 
Westcote, he married first Elizabeth, 
daughter and heiress of John Bozom, and 
relict of Sir Baldwin Fulford, Ent., by 
whom he had issue Katharine, wife to 
Edmund lord Carew. His second wife, 
whom he married before October 1479 (see 
Pat. Bolls, 1476-85, p. 169), was Katharine, 
daughter of Sir Philip Courtney, of Pow- 
derham, Knt, and widow of Thomas 



Bogers, serjeant at law, by whom he had 
issue Elizabeth, married to Sir Anthony 
Poyntz, of Acton, Gloucestershire. See 
also B. Polwhele, * Hist, of Devon * (1797), 
i. 265 n. His second wife's brass, as well 
as his own, is in heraldic dress (H. Haines, 
* Monumental Brasses * [1861], p. 48). She 
died in 1514 (J. C. C. Smith, * Index to 
Wills,' p. 287). 

" Such a Commission was in fact ap- 
pointed by letters patent under the seal of 
the Exchequer on November 12, 1481, to 
W. Huddesfeld, John Speke, esquire, John 
Hays, gentleman, John Atwyll, merchant, 
and John Benet, gentleman, to inquire of 
concealments, <&c., since the beginning of 
the reign, and there was a presentment by 
a jury before these commissioners that 
Bichard Taillour of Topsham, owner of a 
carvel (carvele) called * le Anne,* of Tops- 
ham, had in 20 Ed. 4 imported twenty 
pieces of * chamles ' of the value of 40 
marks without paying customs or subsidy. 
Defendant produced the king's Letters 
Patent dated February 10, 22 Ed. 4 (1482), 
pardoning him for all such ofifences. 
MS. B. 0. Exch. K. B. Memoranda Boll, 
22 Ed. 4, E.T. m. xxi. Possibly this case 
suggested the fraud here complained of. 

* John Kelly, steward and one of the 
bailiffs of Exeter in 1437 (Izacke, p. 77), 
mayor 1457 (id. p. 84), died 1486. By his 
will, proved January 16, 1487, he left a 
tenement to the mayor, bailiffs, and com- 
monalty of Exeter, *ad subsidium salarii 
sacerdotis sive capellani divina celebrantis 
in oapella noviter edificata in fronte Gilde 
Aule' (G. Oliver, *Hist. of the City of 
Exeter ' [1861], p. 206). 

*• John Betty, senior bailiff and receiver 
of the rents &c. of the city of Exeter, 1454 
{Izacke, p. 82) ; mayor, 1459 (id. p. 85). 

" Bichard Bunwell or Bumwell, bailiff 
and steward of the city of Exeter, 1459 
(id. p. 85) ; senior bailiff and receiver of the 
rents &c. 1464 (id. p. 86) ; mayor of 
Exeter, 1473 (id. p. 88). 

" William Obley or Obleigh, bailiff of 
Exeter, 1466 (id. p. 86) ; senior bailiff and 
receiver of the city, 1473 (id. p. 88) ; mayor, 
1478 (id. p. 90) and 1494 (id. p. 97). 

" Thomas Hayly or Hayle, bailiff and 
steward of the city of Exeter, 1460 and 
1461 (id. p. 85) ; bailiff and receiver of the 
city, 1466 (id. p. 86). 

" Boger Werth or Worth, receiver of 
the city, 1475 (id. p. 89) ; senior bailiff and 



TAYLLOUR V, ATT WELL 



9 



Symond ^' John Sterre ^« Richard Wagett ^^ John Colshill »^ Mathew 
Alyngton *® Rychard Hamelyn ^^ John Symond ^^ and other Burges 
of your sayde cite of Excester Burmysyng the sayde vntrue bille by 
them to be affermyd that one Bobert Bonyfamit'^ as one of the 
clerkes and deputies of your sayde seruaunt in the Superuysershipp 
of your Custumes and SubsicQes in your portes of Excester and 
Dertmouth shold sease and arreste the x*** day of Auguste the yer of 
your most noble reyne xxj ^^ to your vse at Topsam ^^ in your sayde 
Counte of Deuonshir a hundreth peces of crescloth ^ and x boltes of 
canuas callid poldavys^ to the valew of ccxx'* marke^' of lafuli 
money of Englond as hit apperyth more playnly in the sayde bille 
and also rehersyth in the sayde bille that the xxvj'*" day of Auguste 
then next folowyng your sayde seruaunt shuld come to Topsam in forme 
afor sayde and found the same seasur as ys in forme afor rehersid 
and ratified the same seasur ^ and ther apon shuld kepe and concele 
hit to his own propur vse in the contempte of your goode grace wher 



steward, 1477 (id. ib.); mayor, 1482 (id. 
p. 91). 

** Robert Symond or Symons, bailiff and 
steward of the city, 1465 (id. p. 86) ; senior 
bailiff and receiver, 1480 (id. p. 90). 

** John Sterre or Starr, bailifif and 
steward of the city, 1474 (id. p. 88), 1477 
(id. p. 89), 1484 (id. p. 98). 

" Bichard Wagett or Waggot, bailiff and 
steward of the city, 1476 (id. p. 89). 

"* John Colshill, bailifif and steward of 
the city, 1478 (id. p. 90) and 1509 (id.p. 106) ; 
mayor, 1493 (id. p. 96). His will was proved 
in 1495 (J. C. C. Smith, * Index,' i. 135). 
See Tapton v. Golsyll, p. 51, and also p. 86, 
n. 46, infra. 

" Mathew Alyngton or AUington, bailiff 
and receiver of the city, 1485 (id. p. 93). 

" Two members of the family of Hamlyn 
or Hamelyn were mayors in 1468 and 1499 
respectively, but no person of this name 
with the Christian name of Richard at- 
tained civic honours. 

'* John Symond or Symons, bailifif and 
steward of the city, 1483 (id. p. 91), bailifif 
and receiver, 1499 (id. p. 103) ; mayor, 
1523 ; d. 1523 (id. p. 113). 

" Robert Bonyfaunt, a member of a 
family which played a considerable part in 
the politics of the city and were apparently 
leaders of the popular or anti-oligarchical 
party. This person had been bailifif and 
steward in 1473, 1489, 1491, and 1499 
(id. pp. 88, 95, 96, 103), but never mayor. 
In 1498 he bad been accused by the oli- 
garchs of having been wrongfully nomi- 
nated a constable of the Staple at Exeter by 



his brother, John Bonyfaunt, who claimed 
by an irregular election to have been made 
mayor of the Staple. The Bonyfaunts were 
defeated, and made submission to an ad- 
verse award of the Council. See * Select 
Cases in the Court of Requests ' (Selden 
Soc, 1898), pp. Ixxiii-lxxvi and 3-7. See 
also Hewyt and others v. London, Mayor 
&c. of, F, p. 81, n. 12, infra. 

" This shows that this case belongs to 
the reign of Edward 4, for August 10, 21 
Henry 7 was 1506, and Huddisfield had 
been dead since 1499, and Colshill, one of 
the jury, since 1495, and John Kelly, an- 
other of them, since 1486. See n. 8, 
supra. The date, therefore, is August 10, 
1481. 

" Topsam or Topsham, on the Exe, four 
miles S.E. of Exeter. 

^ * Crestes panni linei vocati crestecloth ' 
(Will of Lyghtfote, 1459, quoted by J. A.H. 
Murray, * Engl. Diet.* s. v.). See also p. 90, 
infra. 

'* * Poldavies, the bolte, containing xxx 
yards* (Customs Duties, 1600, ib. s. v.). 
* Poldavies * were sail-cloth. The Act 
1 Jac. 1, 0. 24 (1604) recites that 'Powle 
Davies* were imported from France and 
other parts beyond the sea until the thirty- 
second year of Elizabeth (1590). See Acts 
of the Privy Council, i. 342. 

« 146Z. 135. id, 

" This is further evidence that the case 
belongs to the reign of Edward 4, since the 
plaint was ousted from his ofiSce on 
December 7, 1485 (Campbell,* Mat.' i. 
201). 



10 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the sayde bille was neuer found nor affermed by the sayde jury, but 
the sayde John Atwill being a commyssyoner by virtu of the sayde 
Commyssyon the same John and Philipp Atwyil of their grete malice 
which they owed vnto your sayde seruaunt made and imagyned the 
sayde bylle of their owne mynde and the sayde John Atwill as a 
Commyssyoner hit delyuered vnto the sayde William Huddesfeld 
saying it was foundyn and afifermyd by the sayde jury of which 
mateir your sayde seruaunt had a copy out of theEscheker in wrytyng 
and shewed hit to the forsayde John Kelly and other his felowes afore 
rehersed that wer sworne and the forsayde John Kelly and other his 
felowes redde the sayde bylle and they denyed that euer any such 
bille shuld be afifermyd by them ayenste your sayde seruaunt and 
ayenste the sayde Eobert Bonyfaunt nor no suche bille nor mater was 
euer shewed or mynystryd vnto them, wher apon your sayde seruaunt 
desirid a lettre testimonyall of the sayde jury undre theire sealles 
to testifie the same sayinges and so your sayde seruaunt had a lettre 
testimonyall vndre the Sealles of the seyde jury testifying that they 
neuer afifermyd any suche bille ayenste your sayde seruaunt and the 
sayd Robert Bonyfaunt and forasmoche as the sealles of the sayde 
jury were not to aUe men knowen the sealle of the ryght reuerent 
Fader in god the Bysshopp of Excester '® and the sealle of the mair 
of your sayde Cite of Excester ^^ to the sayde testimonyall be sette 
which testimonyall your sayd seruaunt shewed vnto your good grace 
wher vpon your goode grace concydering the grete wronges and 
dyfifamacyon done vnto your sayde seruaunt directed your gracyous 
lettres myssyve vnto the mair and Baillis of your sayde Cite of 
Excester with the same testimonyall in the sayde lettres closid com- 
maundyng the sayde mair and Baillis by the same if so wer that the 
sayde testimonyall wer so sealled in the manere and forme afor 
rehersed to be then they to take the sayde John Atwyil and Philip 
Atwille and put them in to your Gaiolle of Excester ther to remayne 
vnto suche tyme hit pleasid your goode grace to send other wyse in 
commaundement wher vpon the sayde mair and Baillis ^^ after the 
sight of your lettres and testimonyall they knowing the same testi- 
monyall to be goode and trew and by them to be sealled as to 
for is rehersyd and for the more suerte the sayd mair and Baillis 



** Peter (Courtney, bishop of Exeter ** See n. 14, supra. This gives the 

1478-1487 ; 8rd son of Sir Philip Courtney date. 

of Powderham, and brother of Katharine, " Neither the mayor nor any of the four 

2nd wife of Sir Wm. Huddesficld. See bailiffs of 1482 was on the jury, 
further * Diot. Nat. Biog.' 



TAYLLOUR V. ATT WELL 11 

shewed your sayde lettres myssive with the lettre testimonyall vnto 
your Attourney then being in your sayde shir, and after that so 
shewed accordyng to your commaundement arrested the sayde John 
Atwyll and commytted hym vnto your GaioUe ^^ at your sayde Cite of 
Excester, and the sayde PhiUp hering of your wrytyng dredyng to be 
punysshed for his vntrew delyng esloigned hym self and avoyded so 
that he myght nat be takyn and the sayde John Atwill dredyng to be 
ponysshid for his offence came out of your Gaiolle and prison home 
to his owne house and ther secretely kept hym self entendyng to 
have avoyded into other places and he so being oute of your Gaiolle 
contrare to your commaundement your sayde seruaunt causid the mair 
and Bayllis to questyon the GaioUer that had hym in kepyng wher he 
had John your prisoner and he answered them Aye that he was in 
your Gaiqll and desired the mair to send one of his Baillis with hym 
and he would shew hym the sayde John Atwell in your Gaiolle and 
when the GaioUer and Baielliff came to your Gaiolle the sayde John 
Attwyll was gone and so the sayde GaioUer could not shew the same 
John AtwUl your prisoner there and ther apon serche was made for 
the same John AtwUl which was founde and takyn in a manteU dis- 
guysed and brought to the mair and delyucred to hym as is afore .... 
sayd seruaunt [which] ^^ he shalbe redy to prove as it shall please your 
grace to '* Whereupon in the moste humble wyse your sayde seruaunt 
besechyth your goode grace and the lordes of your most noble CounceU 
to take in your direccion the ponysshemeant of the sayde John AtwyU 
and Philipp AtwiU so as other evyll disposed persons may take 
exsample hereafter nat to offend in case like And that your seruaunt be 
recompenced of his costages and charges of his wrongfuU vexacion and 
defamacion and be recompenced of his sute in your Escheker ^^ And 
your sayde seruaunt shaU pray god for the preseruacion of your 
[most ^'] roiaU astate. 



Indorsed. John TayUour ayenst John At weU. 

Fiat dedimus potestatem ^ domino Episcopo Exoniensi & Willelmo 



'^ Specified in B, p. 13, and D, p. 15, as ** I have searched the Ezch. E. B. 

the Castle, i.e. Rougemont, governed by a Memoranda Bolls for 21 and 22 Ed. 4, but 

sheriff nominated by the king. Freeman, failed to find any record of these pro- 

p. 99. ceedings. 

*' MS. indecipherable. ** * *' Dedimus Potestatem.*' See p. 121, 

*' MS. torn. n. 4. 



12 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Huddesfelde attornato in quindena Pasche proxime futuri" apud 
Westmonasterium xxviij" Novembris Anno regni regis xxij^".^^ 

Langpobt.'* 

In modem hand. Tayllour r. Atwelle. 



B. This is thaunswere of John att Well & Philipp att Well to 
the byll of complaynt of John Tayllour. 

The seid John att Well & Philipp sayen that the said byll is not 
materiall nor mater of substance to aunswere vnto but mater of 
sclaunder & feyned by the said John Tayllour of his oolde rotyd 
malice which he hath ayenst the said John att Well & Philipp to 
trouble & vex theym. And ferthermore the said John att Well & 
Philipp for their declaracion of trouth sayen that as for any byll sup- 
posed to be made or alterit by theym or eyther of theym contrary to 
that the Jure found & presented for their trew veredite afore Wil- 
liam Huddesfeld the kynges attourney & other the Commissioners 
namyd in the said byll of complaynt of the said John Tayllour the said 
John att Well & Phylipp sayen that they ben therof in noo wyse gilty 
in maner & fourme as the said John Tayllour hath supposed by his 

*' Aooording to Bond, while the quin- Braddewell, Essex, with a livery of vesture 

dene of a feast generally meant fourteen with linings and furs for summer and winter 

days after a feast, the quindene of Easter at the Great Wardrobe (Cal. Pat. Bolls, 

was within the eight days preceding and p. 126). On March 24, 1462, he was made 

the eight days following Easter, Easter Day a prebendary of York (J. Le Neve, ' Fasti 

included— i.e. March 23 to April 7, 1483. Ecol. Anglic* [1854], iii. 193), and on 

* Handy-book of Dates * (4th ed., 1889), June 2 of the same year prebendary of 

p 162. Lincoln, which place he resigned in 1465 

*" 1482. (ib. ii. 192). He received a grant for life to 

** This signature conclusively esta- himself solely of the office of Clerk of the 

blishes the date as of the reign of Edward 4, Council on July 23, 1462. (The printed 

for Bichard Langport, clerk. Clerk of the Calendar, p. 92, dates this grant 1461, sed 

Council, died in 1490, in which year his qu.) On July 16, 1462, under the style of 

will was proved f J. C. C. Smith, * Index,* » the king's servant Kchard Langport, 

ii. 324). Bichard Langport, who received clerk,' he received a grant of the manor of 

his first ecclesiastical promotion from Somersbury in the parish of Ewhurst, 

Henry 6 (Bot. Pari. v. 471b), is mentioned in Surrey, * so long as it remains in the king's 

a patent dated November 27, 1461, as rector hands without rendering anything for the 

of Bradwell, Essex, and prebendary of the same * (Cal. Pat. Bolls, 1461-77, p. 179). 

collegiate church of St. Mary Otrye (Ottery), He resigned or was dispossessed from the 

Devonshire (Pat. Bolls, 1461-77, p. 80). Clerkship of the Council on the accession 

He received, on July 23, 1461, jointly with of Henry 7 (Burn, 1. s. c). He became 

Thomas Kent, LL.D. (see J. S. Bum, The archdeacon of Taunton on May 14, 1487. 

Star Chamber [1870.], p. 21, and Bot. Pari. As his successor there was installed on July 

V. 216), a grant for life of the office of Clerk 12, 1490 (Le Neve, i. 167), in which year 

of the Council, with the salary of forty marks Langport's will was proved, it is evident 

(26^ 13«. id,) yearly from the previous that he died during the first six months of 

March 4 out of the issues of the manor of that year. 



TAYLLOUR V, ATT WELL IS 

said byll of complaynt and the said John att Well & Phylipp sayen 
that the byll and presentment which is put in to theschequer by the 
said William Huddesfeld & the said other commyssioners is the same 
byll & presentment that was taken afore the same William Huddes- 
feld & other the said Commyssioners which byll & presentment is 
good & trew & euery parte therof. Without that the same John 
att well & Phelipp or eyther of theym made or ymagyned the same 
byll or any worde chaunged in the same after the Jure hadd affermyd 
& geve their veredit therof, and yet this not withstandyng the said 
John Tayllour caused and procurid the said John att welle to be 
arrestyd & put in prisone in the kynges Gayle of the Castell of Exceter 
& ther was kept without any Bayle or mayne prise.* All which maters 
& euerych of them the said John att well & Philipp ben & shalbe redy 
to prove trew as shalbe thought resonable. And forasmoch as the 
said byll & presentment ayenst the said John Tayllour is put into 
theschequer & theruppon processe made for the kyng ther the mater 
to be determyned the said John att Well & PhiUpp prayen that the 
said John Tayllour may be remytted to aunswere ther to the said byll 
& presentment so that the kyng may be aunswerd of his interesse ^ 
for such concellement & seasure as is comprised in the same present- 
ment which drawith aboute the summe of do. marcs,^ and that the 
same John att well & Philepp may be dismyssed out of this Gort 
with their resonable costes & exspens by theym susteyned in this 
behalf. 



c. This is the replicacion of John Tayler vnto the answere of 
John atwill and Phillipp Atwyll. 

The seid John Tayler seyeth that the seid bill is goode sufficient 
& the mater therein trewe and not fayned and furthermore for 
asmoche as the seid John Atwyll and Phillipp wythseyeth not but that 

* ' Every bail is a mainprise (for those appear &c. And yet he never was in prison 

that are bail take the person bailed into or under custody. And sometime these 

their hands and custody), but every mainprise mainpernors are called pledges. . . . And 

is not a bail, because no man is bailed but for as much as every bail is a mainprise (as 

he that is arrested or in prison ; for he hath been said) bail is oftentimes tearmed 

that is not in custody or prison cannot be in our books by the name of mainprise.' — 

delivered out. . . . But a man may be E. Coke, 4 Inst. p. 180. 
mainpemed which never was in prison, and ' By the grant of March 3, 1481, half 

therefore mainprise is more large than the seizures went to the king and half to 

bail. As in an appeal of felony, the de- Tayllour as surveyor of customs. See A, 

fendant wage battell <to. A a day appointed p. 6, n. 2, supra. 
Ac. the plaintife shall finde mainprise <tc.to ' Six hundred marks are £400. 



14 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the seid bill of complaynte before the mayer and the Bayllyfes of the 
seid Citie of Exceter by virtue of your lettres to them directed was 
proved to be made and feined by the seid John Atwill & Phillipp and by 
the seid Jure never afifermed as in the bill of the seid John Tayler is 
supposed, and by the seid John Atwill nor Phillipp nat denyed and 
the seid John Atwill therefor commytted vnto warde accordyng to your 
commaundement by the seid lettres which John Atwill soo beyng in 
warde breke oute of warde ^ and aftir was taken and by the seid 
mayer and Baylyflfes commytted ayen to warde which by the seid 
John and Phillipp is not denyed nor the esloynyng and avoydyng of 
the seid Philhpp for fere to be punysshed for the ontrewe dealyng of 
the same Phillipp and the seid John attwill his brothir, the seid John 
Taylour prayeth that they may be therrof atteyned,^ And further- 
more prayeth as he dyd in his seid bill of complaynt. 



D. This is the reioyner of John Attwyll and Philippe Attwyll 
to the replicacion of John Tayllour. 

The seid John Attwyll and Philippe by protestacion * that the seid 
John Tayllour by his replicacion denyeth not the byll of veredite and 
presentement affermyd by the seid Jure and laide yn to the escheccour 
agence hym and Boberte Bonyfaunt by wiliam Huddesfeld and oder 
commissioners wher by they be bounden to answer the kyng of do. 
marc as mor playnely appereth yn the awnsuer of the said John 
Attwyll and Philippe but3 confesseth hit and withsayeth it not and 
all the mater conteyned yn the same, The said John Attwyll and 
Philippe saine yn all thyngs as they hafe said yn theire said aunswere 

' * It appeareth by oar ancient authors was imprisoned for and convicted of 

of the law that if a prisoner, whatsoever the felony. 

cause was for which he was committed, had * * Hereby (Statute of Marlborough, c, 

broken the king's prison and escaped out, 14) appeareth that the writ of attaint, 

it was felony; because interest reipublicsB which by our old books and auncient records 

ut caroeres sint in tuto ; but yet it must is called breve de convictione, was given by 

have been an actuall breaking of the prison ; the conunon law, and the forme of the writ 

for if the doors had been open and he had is set downe in our auncient authors at the 

gone out, or if others without his privity had suite of the party grieved ; and it appeareth 

broken open the prison doore &c. 6l he goeth by the Register that no writ of attaint 

out & escapeth, or if the gaoler himself e reciteth any statute and the judgement in 

had let him out; in these cases it had been the writ of attaint is fearfuU and penall, 

no felony, because the prisoners did not and given by no statute, and this is proved 

actually breake the prison.' — E. Cokb, 2 by this act, which nameth attaints, and is 

Inst. 589. But by the statute of * de before any act of parliament in print made 

frangentibus prisonam ' of 1 Ed. 2 (1307), concerning attaints.' — Coks, ib. p. 130. 

no man could be punished for prison- ' See Goryng v. Northumberland, earl 

breaking as for a felony, unless he of, 0, p. 108, n. 1, infra. 



PARKER V. SUFFOLK, DUKE OF 15 

and that the said aunswere ys good and trewe tochyng their defence 
yn rnaner and forme as ys alleggid yn the same without that the 
said maire and Bailifes toke ony provis ^ or examinacion be for them 
by vertu of the kynges lettres vppon ony bill or testimoniell, or that 
the seid John Attwyll Brake oute of ward or wis ^ takyn a geyne by 
the said maire and Baylifife or committed a geyne to ward or any 
eschape shold or yn ony wyse myght befall yn suche castell* yn 
maner and forme as the said John Taillour hath declared yn his said 
replicacion, neyder the said Philippe esloyned hym selfe for ony fere 
but} ^ rode onto the kynges god grace and fette a discharge aswell for 
hym selfe as for the said John Attwyll. All which materres the said 
John Attwyll and Philippe be redy to prove as this courte shall award, 
and prayen to be dismissed with their resonable costes by tham 
Susteyned yn this behalfe, and the said John Tayllour to be remitted 
yn to the escheccour as ys conteyned yn the said aunswere, ther to 
be punysshed for the vntrew concelement done a gence the kyng &c 
and to aunswere the kyng of the said dg. marc 



^PARKER' V. SUFFOLK, DUKE 0F.» 

To the right noble sadde and discrete lordes of 
the kyng oure soueraigne lordis eoiinsaill. 

1485-89 This is the grevous complaynt of William Parker knyght ayenst 
the right high and myghty prince John Duke of Suffolk. 

First the seid sir william Parker complaynet ayenst the seid 
duk for asmoche as he by the most famous and Cristen Prince Edward 
the fourth late kyng of Englond was laufully possessid and seasid of 
the maners of Hongham and Buxston with the hundred of Fairehoo 

« Proofs, evidence. Patent Rolla, Ed. 4, 1461-67, p. 463). At 

' * Wis.* An uncommon variant of the some time before 1472 he was enfeoffed by 

Old English form *we8.' Maetzner, English John Stanley, esquire, of lands ut Batersey 

Grammar (1874), translated by C. J. Grece, and Wannesworth Ac, co. Surrey, to the use 

i. 376. of the abbey of Westminster, which feoffment 

* See A, p. 11, n. 32, supra. * was in that year forfeited to the king as 
' Query transposed, for bu3t. See being in violation of the statute of mortmain 

Maetzner, pp. 156, 157. (Patent Rolls, Ed. 4, 1467-77, p. 808, cp. 

> S.CP. Hen. 7, No. 87. b. p. 385 ; also Close Rolls, 13 Ed. 4, m. 

* Sir William Parker of London, knight, 5). In 1482 he accompanied Richard, duke 
warden of the Merchant Taylors' Company of Gloucester, in his expedition against 
at the time of the grant to the company of Scotland, and on July 24 of that year was 
a charter by Edward 4 on August 28, knighted by the duke (W. C. Metcalfe,* Book 
1465 (C. M. Clode, » Memorials of the of Knights' [1885], p. 7). Probably in this 
Merchant Taylors' Company '[1875], p. 194. or the following year he made a brilliant 



16 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



in the Counte of Norffolk and so contynued his laafoll possession and 
peasibly receyued and perceyaed the issuez and profites of the same 
vnto now late that the seid dak by myght and strength contrarie to 
all right lawe and conscience entred into the same maners and 
hundred and therof hath pat out the seid sir william and hath taken 
and perceyued the issues and profites of the same this xij moneth and 
half yere and more which maneres and hundred be of the yerely 
value of vj** li. xiij s. iiij d. which amounteth in all for the seid yere 
and an half — viij** xvij li. 

For the which maners of Hongham and Buxston with other 
maners londes and tenementes the seid sir William is bounden to the 
feoffes of the seid landes in m^m^ marcs ^ to purchace londes and tene- 
mentez to the yerely value of c marcs for the ioyntoure of Alice wif of 
the seyd sir William doughter to sir William late lorde morley ^ and 
Alianore his wif * ouur and beside viij marcs ^ for thexibucion of a 



marriage with Alice Lovel, sister and heir 
of Henry Lovel, lord Morley, who, on her 
brother's death in 1489, became sao jure 
baroness Morley. The marriage may be 
approximately dated from the recital in the 
text that he held the manors by grant 
from Edward 4, who died on 9 April, 
1483. As they had long been in the 
Lovel family, the inference is that they 
were held by him in right of his wife, who 
was after the death of her father in 1476 a 
ward of the Crown. She was twenty-two 
years of age at the date of her brother's death 
in 1489 (Inquisitions post Mortem, Hen. 7, 
i. 212). Through her Parker became a large 
landowner in the Eastern Counties (see G. 
A. Cartbew, ' Hundred of Launditch,' i. 69. 
Calendar of Inquisitions post Mortem, Henry 
7, i. 213; F. Blomfield, *Hist. of Norfolk* 
(1805), ii. 441. Henry Lovel, lord Morley, 
lady Parker's brother, had married Eliza- 
beth, daughter of John de la Pole, duke of 
Suffolk, by Elizabeth, daughter of Bichard 
Plantagenet, duke of York and sister of 
Edward 4 and Bichard 3. Suffolk's violent 
proceedings were therefore probably based 
upon a claim on the part of his daughter to 
dower. 

Parker was in attendance as a represen- 
tative knight at the funeral of Edward 4 
(J. Gairdner, ' Letters and Papers of Bichard 
3 and Henry 7,* i. 8). After Bichard 3's 
accession to the throne he was nominated 
a Privy Councillor and Standard-bearer 
to the king (G.E.C., Complete Peerage, v. 
372). It is probable that he did not 
fight at Bosworth, for his name is not in 
the lists either of the combatants or of the 
attainted. On the other hand, he never 



gained Henry 7*8 favour sufficiently to 
be summoned to Parliament in right of his 
wife's estates. He was evidently successful 
in this suit, since the manors continued in 
his descendants. He died in 1510 (G.E.C., 
Complete Peerage, v. 372). His son Henry 
Parker was summoned to Parliament as lord 
Morley in 1523, d. 1555. His widow Alice 
after his death married Sir Edward Howard, 
K.G., admiral of England (second son of 
Thomas, earl of Surrey, afterwards duke 
of Norfolk), killed in battle before Brest, 
April 25, 1513 (Blomfield, I.e.). 

* John de la Pole, second duke of 
Suffolk, b. September 27, 1442 ; only son of 
William de la Pole, first duke of Suffolk, 
(d. 1450). He married (before October, 
1460) Elizabeth, second daughter of Bichard, 
duke of York. He died in 1491. See 
»Dict. Nat. Biog.» 

« £1,333 65. 8d. 

* Sir William Lovel, second son of 
William lord Lovel of Titohmarch or 
Tiohmarsh, Northants, married Alianore or 
Eleanor, only daughter and heir of Bobert 
lord Morley (d. 1442) ; was sunmioned to 
Parliament as lord Morley, jure uxoris, in 
1469, died July 23, 1476. His wife died 
August 20, 1475 or 1476 (G. A. Carthew, 
* Hundred of Launditch,' i. 68. Nicolas, 
'Historic Peerage,' 1857, sub Morley). 
From this recital the date of the death of 
Eleanor, lady Morley, is more probably 1476, 
though Blomfield gives the year of the 
death of both husband and wife as 1475, 
at which time, he says, their son and heir 
was eleven years old. His nonage there- 
fore lasted till 1485. 

* £6 6s. Qd. 



PARKER V. SUFFOLK, DUKE OF 17 

prest, and to pay all the dettis that the seid Alianore late lady morley 
ought the tyme of her decesse duely provid and also to content and pay 
all annuytes graunted by the seid late lord and lady out of the seid 
maners and confermed by the seid feoffes And ouur xx" which the feoffes 
of the seid Maners were bounden to pay to the seid Alice duryng the 
noun age of the now lord morley ^ for all other charges for her ex- 
penses, which feofifes have charged the seid William parker to the 
payeme[nt] * [of the] ® seid xx" and discharged theym self by reason 
of a lesse made thereof to hym And also the seid duk hath by his seid 
mych strength discharged all maner of olde officers the which have 
contynued there this xxx yere and more to his grete hurt. 

Item the seid sir WilHam complayneth hym ayenst the seid duk 
for asmoche as he had purchased a tenement in Hengham af9reseid 
callid the hare and for the edificacion of the same hath had a frame 
of tymber there a makyng the space of iij yeres & more ^ which Frame 
of tymber the seruauntes of the seid duk and by his commaundement 
haue caried and take awey the frame of tymber to such places as it 
hath pleasid hym contrary to all right which frame of tymber and the 
werkmanshipp therof hath cost the seid sir William cc li. and more 
ouur and beside the beryng of the tymber. 

Item the seid sir WiUiam complayneth hym ayenst the seid duk 
for asmoche as he had bilded vpon the seid grounde a tenement 
and a new berne which cost hym xl li. and more the seid duk by his 
grete myght entred in to the same tenement and berne the seid berne 
beyng full of Corne and there toke and thresshed alle the Cornes than 
and there beyng and theym led caried awey and sold at his pleasure 
to the grete losse of the seid sir William and by that vnlefull dealyng 
the grounde of the seid sir William bath stand vacand and vnoccupied 
and yet doth for the seid sir William ne noone of the seruauntes do 
come thider to lete and occupie the same for fere and jupardie of their 
lyves, Wherupon the seid sir William shewed to the kyngis goode 
grace the disposicion of the seid duk And therupon had a commyssion 
from hym directid to the tenauntes there comm^undyng theym to 
paye their fermes to the seid sir William and to his deputes and to 

' This fixes the date of this suit as being Addy, * The Evolution of the English 

prior to 14S9, the year of lord Morley's death. House* [189S], p. 108). By the *Acte 

* Manuscript torn. against burning of frames ' (37 Hen. 8, 

* * The rearing of a house, described in c. 6), passed in 1646, ' the secret bumynge 
medieeval Latin as levatio, was the lifting of frames of tymber prepared and made by 
or setting up of the timber work or skeleton the owners therof redy to be sett up and 
structure which supported the whole build- edified for houses ' was made felony 
ing. The timber work was prepared and without benefit of clergy. 

made ready before it was set up * (S. O. 



18 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

noone other which commyssion was opynly rede afore the seid ten- 
auntes and while the seid Commyssion was in redyng the seruaantes 
[of] ^ the seid dukes came vpon hym with billes and bowes and there 
put hym in suche fere that he was fayne to tak the parsonage and the 
parson there in noo wise durst kepe hym but conveyed hym on the 
bak side to the chirche for the saufgarde of his lif and so conveied by 
night or elles he had be sleyn. 

Please it youre noble wisdomes and sadde discrecions the pre- 
misses aboue seid tenderly considered and theruppon by your seid 
noble discrecions to see and ordeyn that the seid sir William may be 
restored ayene to the possession of the seid manors and hundred And 
also truly content and paide of the seid viij " xvij li. so by the seid 
duk receyued and that the seid sir William his seruauntes and officers 
there may peasibly occapie theire seid offices as they of olde tyme 
haue done without any bodily harme to hym or theym here after to 
be done. ^" 



ATTORNEY-GENERAL v. PARRE AND OTHERS. 

This is thaunsure * of William Parre Richard Vndrell John 
Vndrell Thomas Bedell Herry Savage John Nores James 
Savill Robert Woman Robert Chapell Nicholas Walter 
John Chamlet & Thomas Shoo tp the informacion* put 
agenst theym by Mr. Hobert the kinges attourne.' 

The seid William Parre Richard Vndrell John Vndrell Thomas 
Bedell Herry Savage John Nores James Savell Robert Woman Robert 
Chapell Nicholas Walter John Chamlet and Thomas Shoo Seyn that 
thohthe * it is that they were inpanelled vppon thacquittell of the seid 
John Wod and William Frank for the mater in the seid informacion 
specified be fore the kinges juges and at the tyme and place in the 

»• There are no other papers in this hy way of information had become common 

case. during the reigns of Henry 6 and Edward 4, 

« S.CP. Hen. 7, No. 52. This is the • Hist. Engl. Law,' iii. 168. 
only document of the case. * Sir Jjunca Hoberd, Hobart or Hubbard, 

* Perhaps in accordance with the terms of Lincoln's Inn. Attorney General, No- 

of the Star Chamber Act (3 Hen. 7, c. 1) vember 1, 1486 ; knighted February 18, 

which gave jurisdiction ' uppon bill or in- 1603; died 1507 (* Diet. Nat. Biog.'). 

formacion put to the seid Chancellor for the The style * Mr.* affords no trustworthy 

kyng or any other, ageyn any persone for indication of the date of the case. Cf. 

eny mysbehavyng afore rehersed,' included Gtoryng v. Northumberland, earl of, c, 

in which is ' takyng of money by jurryes.' p. 103 : ' Mr. Bray, knyght for the kinges 

Presumably this case would come within the moste honorabill body.' Also ' Mr. Cheyneye ' 

recited mischief of ' other ontrewe retournes * and *8ir John Cheyney' alternatively on 

or the * takyng of money by juryea.* Or it p. 49. 

may be a proceeding under 11 Hen. 7, c. 26 * By mistake for • trohthe,* i.e. troth. 

(1495). Beeves remarks that prosecutions 



ATTORNEY-GENERAL r, PARRE AND OTHERS 19 

seid informacion specified how be it they had soche Euydences Geuyn 
theym at that tyme for the proflfe that the seid John and William 
wer not Geltie of that Eschape wherof be fore that tyme they were 
indited That in their Conciensis they thought playnly they Cowd no 
noder wise doo with owt they shold haue bene forsworne but to doo as 
they did in the acquitell of the seid John and William of the seid 
Eschape for they sey one * ^ the wiflf of John Edmundes the 
vnder keper of the kinges benche Testified to the seid William Parre 
Richard Vndrell John Vndrell Thomas Bedell Herry Savage John 
Nores James Savell Robert Woman Robert Chapell Nicholas Walter 
John Chamlet and Thomas Shoo the seid John and William after tha 
seid John Day was arested for the folony *"' in the said informacion 
specified delyuered the seid John Day to the kepyng of the kinges 
benche and ther as a prisoner was resceyued and ther he Contined 
by the space of iij day vn to the tym he Eschaped thens after that 
the seid John Wode and William Erank ware lawfully dischargid of 
hym, with owt that the seid William Parre Richard Vndrell John 
Vndrell Thomas Bedell Herry Savage John Nores James Savell Robert 
Woman Robert Chapell Nicholas Walter John Chamlet and Thomas 
Shoo acquited the seid John and William of the seid felony by ony 
Corupt meane or that the seid William Parre Richard Vndrell John 
Vndrell Thomas Bedell Herry Savage John Nores James Savell Robert 
Woman Robert Chapell Nicholas Walter John Chamlet and Thomas 
Shoo Euer hadd ony suche Euydens or informacion Geuyn theym 
which shold haue discharged their Conciens to atteynted^ the seid 
John and William of the seid Eschape and with owt that the seid 
William Parre Richard Vndrell John Vndrell Thomas Bedell Herry 
Savage John Nores James Savell Robert Woman Robert Chapell 
Nicholas Walter John Chamlet and Thomas Shoo wer periured ^ in 
Gevyng the seid verdit, to their knowlege, all which maters the 
seid William Parre Richard Vndrell John Vndrell Thomas Bedell 
Herry Savage John Nores James Savell Robert Woman Robert Chapell 
Nicholas Walter John Chamlet and Thomas Shoo at all tymes ar 
redy to proue as this Courte will award theym & prayeth to be 
dismissid owt of that same with ther resonable Costes & damages for 
ther wronge vexacion and trobill in that behalfe. 

"^ Blank in MS. " On the claim of the Star Chamber to 

• Sic, for felony. try cases of perjury. See Introd., pp. 

^ Sic, * have ' omitted. cxxxiii-cxxxv. 



c 2 



20 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

BATHE, PRIOR OF v. ST. AUGUSTYN'S, CAUNTERBURY, ABBOT OF.' 

A. To the king cure souereign lord 

1489 Shewith vnto youre Highnes and the lordes of youre moost honour- 
able counsell youre contynuall Oratour Thabbot of the monastery of 
Seynt Austyn in the Countie of Kent * that where of late a grevous 
Bclaunderouse vntrue fayned and surmysed bill of compleynt hath 
bene and yit is pursuyd ayenst youre saide Oratour before the lordes 
of youre moost honourable counsell by one John Cauntlowe prior of 
the Cathedrall Churche of Bathe ' to the greate grevouse and Impor- 
tunable charge costes and lossis of youre saide Oratour And for the 
insufficiente * and vncerteynte of the whiche bill youre saide Oratour 
ought not to be put to Aunswere Neuertheles youre saide Oratour 
saith that by a Statut made in the tyme of king Edward the thurde 
the xlij yere of his Reigne ® It was Actid and ordeynyd by the same 
Statut that no maner of person shulde be put to Aunswere without it 
were apon a due presentment afore his Justices or ellys by mater of 
Record Or ellys by a Originall writ * Accordyng to the Auncien la we 
of the land As more playnly apperith by the same estatut And for- 
asmuch as the saide bill of compleynt of the saide prior of Bathe 
imply eth no presentment takyn afore noone of the kinges justices nor 
is mater of Record ner due ' Originall writ youre saide Oratour askyth 

1 S.CP. Hen. 8, Handle 24, No. 396. ^ This statute, the 42 Ed. 3, c. 3, is 

Wrongly sorted. expressed to be based upon a petition of 

^ St. Augustine's Benedictine Monas- the Commons against the practice of 

tery said to have been founded by king citing persons by false accusation before 

Ethelbert and St. Augustine in 605. John the Council. The operative part is here 

Dunster appears in Dugdale as successor to but slightly abridged. The Commons peti- 

William Sellyng, who died in 1480. The tioned in 1421 for the observance of this 

next name in Dugdale's list, which gives statute (Kot. Pari. iv. 156). See further 

no dates for Dunster, is John Dygon, Introd., p. Ixxix, supra. 
1497-1509 (' Monast.* i. 123). Dunster • * Writs are diversely divided in divers 

was probably the name of the place of the respects, some in respect of their order 

Abbot's birth in N.W. Somerset, and not his or manner of granting are termed Original, 

family name, which was presumably Slugge and some Judicial. Original writs are 

or Slougge (see C, p. 28, and D, p. 32, infra). these that are sent out for the summoning 

At Dunster was a cell to Bath priory. of the defendant in a personal or the 

J. Collinson, * Hist, of Somerset,' ii. 16. tenant in a real action, before the suit 

' Prior 1489-1499. He rebuilt the begins, or rather to begin the suit. Those 

chapel of St. Mary Magdalen at Holloway, are Judicial which are sent out by order 

near Bristol, together with a small hospital of the court where the suit depends, upon 

for lunatics adjoining (J. Collinson, ' Hist. occasion after the suit begun.' Old Nat. 

of Somerset,' i. 172). Bath was also a Brev. fol. 51 and 147. J. Cowel, * Interp.' 

Benedictine house (Dugd. ii. 256). Its s.v. Writ. 

revenues at the Dissolution were 695L 6s. li<2. ' There is an omission. The text of 

J. Speed, * Hist, of Great Britain ' (1660), * the statute Anglic^ runs ' or by due process 

p. 821. and writ original.' 

^ Sio. The same form appears on p. 5. 



BATHE, PRIOR OF, V. ST. AUGUSTYN'S, CAUNTERBURY, ABBOT OF 21 

iugement if he ought to be put to Aunswere contrarie to the fourme 
of the saide estatut And ouer this saith that in youre last parliament 
holden at Westminster It was agreed concludyd and Affermyd by 
youre grace And the lordes of youre moost honourable counsell in the 
same present parliament Assemblyd That fromthensforth no maner 
a ® persone nor persons shulde not be grevid nor vexid apon any privy 
Seale to be suyd by reason of any compleynt theruppon made without 
so were the mater therin conteyned concernyd a great cause of Byot 
forcible entre vnlaufuU & riotouse Assemblees Or ellys great and 
grevouse pouertee concernyng eyther of the parties that soo suyth or 
complayneth ® Wherfor your seid Oratour praieth that forasmuche 
as the saide bill of compleyns comprehendyth no Ryot nor vnlaufull 
Assemble And youre said Oratour & the saide prior be persons 
ablee & sufficient to suye for theire remedy by the lawes of youre 
Land for all Iniuries & wrong to theym commytted & doone that youre 
saide Oratour may be dismyssid oute of this Court with his resonable 
costes and damages for his wrongfull vexacion susteyned in this behalf. 

Indorsed. Besponsio abbatis sancti Augustini Gantuariensis &c. 
ad billam Prioris Bathoniensis. 



B. The declaration (of the) ^ matere in variaunce betweyne the 

abbot of the monastere of seynt Augustyn of Gaunterbury 
And the prior ' of Bath. 

The * ' * ' sayith that his bille is gode true sufficient 

& certain to put the seid Abbot * ' * ^ * ' Wheras 
the seid Abbot alleygeth that the same prior owght (to ^) sue in the 

* A worn-down form from * of.* Cf. Lord feele to grete myght on that oo syde, and 

Bemers^s Froissart (1523), i. xxxviii. 52 : unmyght on that other, or ellus other 

* well fumysshed of men a warr.* J. A. H. cause resonable that shalle moeve hem,' 

Murray, * Eng. Diet.' s.v. A. the xvth ordinance provides * that the 

' The demurrer as to riots &q. can clero of the Gounsaille be swome that 
only refer to the Act *Pro Camera Stel- every day that the Gounsaille sitteth oq 
lata ' (3 Hen. 7, c. 1 [1487]). But its eny Billes betwix partie and partie, that he 
sub-title *An Acte geving the court of shall, as ferre as he can, aspie which is 
Starchamber authority to punnyshe the porest Suteurs Bille, and that furst to 
dyvers my(8)demeanour8 ' indicates that be radd and answered ' (H. Nicolas, * Pro- 
the negative form of this recital is an ex- ceedings &q, of Privy Council ' (1834), iii. 
tremely elastic paraphrase. The petition 214, 217. Cf. 31 Hen. 6, o. 2). The Star 
would appear to have been drawn by a Chamber Act contains no such clause re- 
draughtsman without the Act before him, garding ' great and grevouse pouertee ' as 
and the recital seems a hazy mixture of is recited here. See further Introd., p. Ixxxi, 
the Act and of the ordinance of Council of supra. 

1426, * that all the Billes that comprehend * Parchment illegible, being much in- 

matiers terminable at the common la we jured by damp and decay, 

be remitted there to be determined. But if ' Reading doubtful. 

80 be that the discretion of the Counsaille * Illegible. 



22 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

* 3 ♦ ^ cf the mater and charges ^ comprysyd in his seid bill the 
same Prior is * ^ * ^ * ^ said * priorie beth * in grete 
pouertye for * ^ * ^ * * * ^ manye * causes Whe * ^ 

* ^ * ^ soden * ruyn of the most * of the church of the seid Priorye ^ 
the charges and costes of repare * * ^ * ^ * ^ * ^ seid 
* ' * ^ * ^ * ^ place And othere greate vrgent & in- 
evitable cause of the same pouertye is the grete vnreasonable & 
gruggfull ^ * ^ * 3 wilf ull damage done * by * ^ * ^ of 

* 3 #3 hereditamentes juelles goodes & catalles of the same 
pryorye done & commytted vnfatherly to the same place by the seid 
• ' * ' * ^ the grete offence in conscience * ' * ^ therof 
as appereth by the articles & matere ensuynge redy tobe proved 
emonges dyuers othere grete inconveyent A *' *^ *' to 
the hurt & ympouerysshyng of * ^ * ^ Fyrst the same Abbot 
beynge then Prior of the seid Priorye causyd a yerely rent of ix marcs ^ 
parcell of the heritaunce of the seid Pryorye due therto by the 
maire «fc com(monalty) ^ of the towne of Plymmouth ^ tobe relessyd 
& dischargyd forever to the grete hurt & disheritaunce of the same 
howse & the same abbot resceyued therfore c & viij li.^ Whiche 
(he^) (t)^"oke with hym & conuertyd to his proper vse & to the vse 
of the seid abbathie Wherof he is nowe abbot Also the seid abbot 
then beyng Pryor of the said Pryorye caused the (sa)^®me Pryorye 
& thenheritmentes therof tobe chargyd perpetuelly with one yerely 

* Obsolete form. A.S. beK See J. A. H. St. German's were commuted for a fee 

Murray, ' Kng. Diet.' s.v. Be, p. 716. farm rent of 41/. payable by the corpora- 

^ In his account of William Bird, tion of Plymouth, and those of the priory 

Caantlow's successor, CoUinson says : * The of Bath for a fee farm rent of ten marks 

old conventual church being in his time (62. Ids. 4d.). In consequence of the 

(1499-152f'>) become ruinous, the bishop, at * pouertee and dekaye ' of the town the first 

the instance and with the assistance of the of these rents was reduced in 1464 to 

prior, set about rebuilding it in a more 29i. 6s. Sd. It may be inferred that the 

sumptuous manner * (' Hist, of Somerset ' rent paid to the priory of Bath was at the 

[1791J, i. 56). The bishop was Oliver King same time reduced to nine marks. See R. N. 

(1495-1504), of whom CoUinson says that Worth, * History of Plymouth ' (1890), 

he * began the reparation of the ruinated p. 190. 

church of Bath' (ib. iii. 386). From this * Eighteen years' purchase. Cktnsidenng 

pleading it would appear that the ruin was that the suppression of religious houses 

due to mischiince and not to neglect. But had taken place for the foundations of 

there is in existence a letter of bishop King, Wykeham and Waynilete, and on a larger 

dated October 9, 1500, which tells a very scale in the case of the alien priories under 

dififcrent tale, and describes the church as Henry 5, this was a very fair bargain. 

* per incuriam multorum priorum non repa- Land was customarily sold in the middle of 
ratam aut refectam, imo f unditus dirutam the fifteenth century and down to a hundred 
ipsisque in voluptatibus evanuisse.' This, years later at twenty years' purchase of the 
notwithstanding that the revenues of the rental. J. E. T. Rogers, ' Hist. Ag.' iv. 
house amounted to 480Z. 16s. 6Jd., . nd that 738 ; W. Denton, ' England in the Fifteenth 
the monks only numbered sixteen. The Century ' (1888), p. 233. Cf. S. P. Dom. 
letter is printed in J. Britten, ' Hist, of Bath Hen. 8, xiii. 1, 1453, and ibid. ii. 671 
Abbey Church ' (1825), App. iv. p. 140. (1538) ; also Acts of the Privy Council, ii. 

« Rancorous. ' 6L 382 (1550) ; iv. 194 (1662). See also p. 

" In 1440 the rights of the priory of 176, infra. '" Parchment torn. 



BATHE, PRIOR OF, V, ST. AUGUSTYN'S, CAUNTERBURY, ABBOT OF 23 

rent of xl s. grauntyd in his tyme to one Johane at Welle & to her 
heires & assignes & ressayvid (the)rfore '^ of her c li. ^^ which he 
toke to his propre vse & to the vse of his abbathie & also causyd 
the same pryory to be chargyd perpetuelly with an other annuell rent 
of (vj li.) ^* to Thomas more of Cheldre ^' in fee symple ^* & resceyved 
therefore (ccc) ^* marcs ^® which he toke & conuertyd to his propre 
vse & to the vse of his seid abbathye. Also he causyd the same 
priorye to be charged in his tyme perpetuelly with an other annuell 
rent of x li. grauntyd to John Twyneo in fee symple & reseyved 
therefore of hym cccc marcs ^^ (which) * he in lyke wyse appUed to his 
propre vse & to the vse of his seid abbathye Moreouer the seid 
abbot beynge pryor of the seid priorie resceyved of diuers other per- 
sons for • ^® of yerely rentes Corodyes ^* pensyons & Fees & 
morgages of londes to theym made in his tyme for terme of their 
lyves & for discharges & releesses of the rightes & possessions & sale 
of ymplementes of the same priorie & for manumyssions & Fynes 
in his tyme made & grauntyd as appereth by a scedule thervnto 
annexyd amountynge to the some of yj*^ Ixvij" xij* & iiij** to the 
extreme ympouerysshynge of the same Priorye And ferthermore the 
seid abbot beynge Pryor of the seid Priorye gretly mynysshed the 
Store of the mansion & possession of the same Pryorye to the grete 
disperses ^^ damage & ympouerysshynge therof And also in his tyme 
& at the tyme of his departynge the same Priorye was indettyd in 

" Fifty years' purchase, an extraordi- actions presumably proved highly profit- 

narily good bargain, the usual rate of interest able to the abbot. Cf . n. 13, supra, and p. 

for money lent on good security being ten 26, nn. 5, 6, infra. 

to twelve per cent. (Denton, p. 260. See "^ Here * corody * is apparently used of a 

the references there given in n. 2). By bargain by the monastery with a private 

37 Hen. 8, c. 9, § 4 (1545), ' An Acte against person. Cowel (Interp. s. v.) associates it 

Usurye,' ten per cent, per annum was the with a grant to the king in favour of his 

limit of interest allowed to mortgagees. nominee. The example in the text is the 

" Illegible. Restored from the prior's more common use. H. Spelman defines it 

account, G (p. 26, infra). ' as ' alimenti modus qui in aliquo monas- 

'* Thomas More of Cheddar, Somerset. terio alicui conceditur, vel ad terminum 

Will proved 1493. J. C. C. Smith, ' Index,' vitae, vel pro certo tempore, vel hereditarie.' 

ii. 376. Glossarium Archaiologioum (1687) s.v. 

'* I.e. heritable. CSonformably with this Corrodium al. Corredium. See Introd., 

terminology an Assize of Novel Disseisin p. Ixxxv. An example of a corody is printed 

lay for a corody in arrear. Stat. West- in F. A. Gasquet, ' Henry 8 and the English 

minster the second, c. 25 (1285). See Monasteries ' (2nd ed. 1889), ii. 531, App. ii., 

Introd., p. Ixxxv. from which it appears that it was daily re- 

'^ Parchment torn; restored from the ceivable in kind in a house within the 

prior's account, C (p. 26, infra). monastic precincts, occupation of which 

*• 200/., i.e. thirty-three and one-third constituted part of the benefit received, 

years' purchase. The abbey held no land Cf. Cowel (Interp. s.v.). A pension did not 

at Cheddar, and the annuity was presum- connote residence. Ibid. See further as to 

ably charged on the whole of its lands, Corody, p. 148, nn. 47, 61. 

whence, perhaps, the high price paid. *" I.e. dispersals, a form not noticed in 

" 266/. 135. 4d., or more than twenty- J. A. H. Murray's ' Eng. Diet.' 
Biz years' purchase. These three trans- 



24 COURT OF THE STAR CIlAxMBER 

viij'^'^ & xj li. & the same abbot toke & conueyed*^ with hyin the 
juels plate siluer vessels goodes & catalles specified in the bille of 
the seid Prior with dyuers other goodes & ymplementes of the goodes 
of the same Priorye which beth ** not conuenyent tobe expressyd in 
this high court levyng in the same place no some of money ne other 
stufif necessarye to the sustenaunce & mayntenaunce therof as in 
mete & drynke to fynd theym by the space of a fourtnyght *^ but of 
his gredy couetous ^^ havynge special mynde to depart therefro toke all 
that he myght of the same place to the vttur ympouerysshynge thereof 
And moreouer the seid abbot the day of his departynge irom the seid 
Priorye havynge in his possession the juels plate siluer vessell k 
goodes of the same Pryorie specified in the same bille the couent " of 
the same Priorye beynge bifore hym made to hym request to haue 
delyuery to theym of the same juels plate siluer vessell & goodes 
the same abbot then & theire esspecially desyred & requyred the 
same couent by verrey subtile & crafty meanes that he myght haue 
the occupacion of the same juels plate siluer vessell & goodes for a 
certen season to be in his rewle & tobe brought with hym to the seid 
abbey of seynt Augustyns & therby he shuld haue the grettere love 
of the couent of the same place of seynt Augustynes & it were grete 
reproch to the same Priorye he to departe so pore from thens not 
havynge eny substaunce with hym & therevppon he leynge his hand 
vppon his brest made there a solempne oth & promyse vppon his 
presthode to the same Couent to restore ayeyn to theym the seid juels 
plate siluer vessell & goodes in as goode & better value & condicion 
then he resceyued theym. Moreouer the seid Prior seith that the 
seid abbot hath by his writynge made with his owne hand grauntyd 
to restore ayen the seid siluer vessell Chalesse pax ^* & half cruettes ^^ 
of siluer in more & bettere value then he hadde theym Neuerthe- 
lesse the same abbot to thentent to coloure therby more couertly his 
seid grete wronges hath made a bille to the kynge oure soueraign lord 

'-^ With the implication of theft. Cf. round, having been kissed by the priest, 

Cranmer, ' Cateoli.' 99 b, ' I may convey after the '' Agnus Dei " in the Mass, to 

from hym an Oxe, Asse or an Horse,' and communicate the Kiss of Peace.' A. Welby 

Shaks. ' Merry Wives,' i. 3. 31 : * Convey, Pugin, * Glossary of Ecclesiastical Orna- 

the wise it call,' J. A. H. Murray, *Eng. ment, <&c.' (1840), p. 192, where is an en- 

Diot.,' s.v. graving of a pax. It is called in C ' le 

** Evidently a minimum. paxbred,' i.e. * brede or lytylle borde,' it 

'^ A form of covetise, covetousness. being anciently of wood. Prompt. Parv. 

J. A. H. Murray, ' £ng. Diet.' s.v. Covetise. (Camd. Soc. 1843). 

Cf. Butlond and others v. Austen and others, " At Durham Abbey 'there was per- 
p. 263, infra. - taining to the altar two great crewetts of 

" See p. 138, n. 5. silver, containing a quart apiece, parcel gilt 

*' *A small plate of gold, or silver, or and engraven all over; and two lesser 

copper gilt, enamelled, or piece of carved cruets for every day, all of silver.' ' Antiqui- 

ivory, or wood overlaid with metal, carried tics of Durham Abbey,' p. 12. Pugin, p. 



BA.THE, PIUOR OF, V. ST. AUGUSTYN'S, CAUNTERBURY, ABBOT OF 25 

& rehersynge therin in a generaltye the compleynt of the seid Prior 
praynge for so moch as there is no matere by presentement ne mater 
of record due origynall by the cours of the lawe riot riotous assemble 
ne forcibly entree comprysed in the bille of the seid Prior that there- 
fore the same abbot myght be dysmyssyd out of this Court accordynge 
to the ordynaunces of certen statutes in that behalf ordeynyd *^ the 
which bille of the same abbot is made in fourme of peticon & not 
by eny fourme of answar to the bille of the seid Prior only of subtiltie 
& craft by cause the same abbot wold not be sworne vppon eny 
answer by hym tobe made directly to the bille of the same Prior "' ne 
yef eny answer direct therunto, which is a right ieopardous president 
tobe begon of newe And by the causes & consideracons alleggyd 
herin it may be by the consideracion of this high Court pleynly 
acceptyd & adiugyd grete pouertie tobe in the seid howse of Bath 
All which maters the seid Prior is redy to prove as this Court wille 
awarde And for asmoch as the seid abbot in his bille & answer 
hath not denyed the hauynge of the seid juels plate siluer vessell & 
goodes specified in the seid bille of the seid Prior & other iniuries 
conteynyd in the same bille therefore the same Prior praeth that by 
iugement of this high Court the same abbot may be adiugged othere 
to yeld to the same Prior the juelles plate siluer vessell & godes 
specified in his seid bille & to make such ferthere restitucion & 
recompense to the same Prior & his howse of Bath of the premysses 
as accordeth with right & goode conscience orelles to make ferthere 
pleyn & direct answer aswelle to the matere comprysed in the seid 
bille of the seid Prior as to the mater specified in this repUcacon & 
therevppon to be examyned by his othe as he shuld haue be vppon a 
pleyn answare ^^ made to the matere of the bille of the same Prior. 

Indorsed. Prior Bathoniensis contra abbatem sancti Augustini 
Cantuariensis. 

c. 

UNIUEBSIS sancte matris ecclesie filiis ad quos presentes Utere 
peruenerint. 

JOBLANNES Cantelowe Prior prioratus ecclesie C(athedralis) 
(Bathoniensis) ^ et eiusdem loci Capitulum in omni salutari Salutem 

88. Cruets appear to have been anciently amined upon oath.' Sir J. F. Stephen, 

of the larger size. ' Hist, of the Criminal Law ' (1883), i. 176. 

'" See A, p. 21, n. 9, supra, and Introd., Cf. Pynson & others v. Squyer & others, 

pp. Ixxix-lxxxii. p. 117, infra. See also Introd., pp. Wi, Ixxi, 

" * The Star Chamber proceeded by bill supra, 
and answer, and administered interroga- ' Paper torn. The restorations are 

tories to the aocused party, whom they ex- from documents B and D. 



26 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

perpetuam. Ad Vniuersitatis Vestre noticiam deducimus per pre- 
sentes quod qu(idam) ^ pater dompnus Johannes dunster Abbas mon- 
est^ii ^ Sancti Augustini iuxta Gantuauiam ^ nuper prior prioratus 
h(ui)us* ecclesie Bathoniensis in Tempore Prioratus sui dampnum 
intulit commorauit ^ subtraxit dilapidauit ac deuas(t)auit ^ Bedditus 
prouentus Alia que bona dicti prioratus alienauit necnon quamplurima 
in peius transtulit * ymmo dictum prioratum in debitis pensionibus 
Gorro(diis)^ seruiciorum concessionibus que ofiSciorum onerauit et aliis 
prout sequitur. 

IN PRIMIS fecit relaxari Redditum nouem marcarum de Com- 
munitate Ville de plimmoth in comitatu deuon priori & Conuentui dicte 
ecc(leBie) ^ Cathedralis Bathoniensis Annuatim persoluendum pro 
qua relaxacione Idem venerabilis pater dompnus Johannes dunster 
nuper prior Ante dictus recepit c (viij li.). 

ITEM fecit onerari dictum prioratum concedendo Johanne At Well 
de Glaston ^ in Comitatu Somerset vidue heredibus executori & As- 
(Big)nati(s)^ imperpetuum Annuam pensionem quadraginta Solidorum 
et recepit pro eadem pensione c li. quas secum asportauit. 

ITEM fecit onerari dictum prioratum concedendo ^ Thome More 
de cheddre in Comitatu Somerset heredibus executori & Assignatis 
su(i8)* imperpetuum Annuam pensionem Sex librarum Et accepit pro 
eadem pensione ccc marcas quas secum asportauit. 

ITEM onerari fecit dictum prioratum concedendo Johanni 
Thweneho de Cicestria ^ in Comitatu Gloucester heredibus executori et 
Assignatis suis imperpetuum pensionem Annuam decem librarum. 
Et accepit pro eandem ^ pensione eccc marcas quas secum asportauit. 

Summa pensionum concessarum quibus oneratur) . ,. ^ 

XIX ll 

dictus Prioratus deterioratur que imperpetuum ) 

Summa pecuniarum pro predictis pensionibus receptarum & 
per dictum yenerabilem Patrem dompnum Johannem dunster 
subtractatarum seu ereptarum viij^ 1 marce.** 

ITEM dictus venerabilis pater dompnus Johannes dunster a dicto 
prioratu secum Asportauit ij magnas pelues Argenti & interiore parte 
dea(uratas).^ 

« Sic. ii. 587. 

' Detained, an ante- and post-classical ' The total of the annual charges set 

ase. out is ISL 

* In peius transtulit, deteriorated. " The total comes to 1,012 marks = 

^ The will of Joan Atwell of Glaston- 674/. 13s. 4^. ; hut if the sum received for 

bury was proved in 1486, J. C. C. Smith, commutation of the fee farm rent of Ply- 

* Index,' i. 24. mouth be deducted the total is as stated, 

« The will of John Twynyho of Ciren- viz. 850 marks or 5662. 1^, 4d. 
cester, Gloucester, was proved in 1485, id. 



BATttE, PRIOR OF, V. ST. AUGUSTYN*S, CAUNTERBURY, ABBOT OF 27 



ITEM dictus venerabilis pater secum asportauit j le garnysh de 
syluer vessell Completum videlicet xij le platters xij 1 * * ® et xij le sau- 
cerie vnacum ij le Chargers et vt dicitur j aliud le Charger Argenti 
pretium le j le platter iij li. pretium j 1 * ^ 

Summa Ixxxiiij li. 

ITEM dictus venerabilis pater secum asportauit ij phiolas ^ argenti 
in parte deaurati & j le paxbred Argenti & intoto deauratum. 

ITEM secum asportauit j Calicem Argenti in parte deaurati & j 
oUam Argenti in tota deaurati pondus dicte olle xiij vncie. 

ITEM Alienauit Vnum par vestimentorum quondam ex dono 
recolende memorie domini Thome Bekynden nuper Bathoniensis & 
Wellensis Episcopi ^^ valoris iiij***^ marcarum cum j Salerio Argenti ^^ 
et cum cratera argenti ^^ Befectorio ibidem pertinent e. 

ITEM aUenauit j implementum Antiquum de pandoxatorio ^^ vide- 
Ucet vnum le fumeys euen * . . . . Ix li. vj s. viij d. 

Becepta per dictum venerabilem patrem dompnum Johan- 
nem dunster nuper priorem Antedictum in tempore con- 
struccionis Befectorii. 

ITEM In primis Becepit dictus venerabilis pater de domina Est- 
mounde vidua pro quadam pensione decern marcarum pro quibus 
dictus prioratus hue usque oneratur . . . vij^'' (li.).^^ 

ITEM Becepit de Johanne chaneys^^ de Wyllemyndon ^*^ in 



' Apparently le . . ., bat the upper 
part of the letter foUowmg 1 is torn off, and 
the word may perhaps have been ' lances,' 
dishes. 

" Thomas Bekynden, Bekynton or 
Beckington, bishop of Bath and Wells, 
1443-1465, ' Diet. Nat. Biog.' 

"-" Interlined. 

'* In *Catholicon Ajiglicum,' compiled 
in 1483, ' brewhouse, pandoxatoriam.' 
E. E. T. S. 1881. 

" Paper torn, but restored from the 
fragment following, marked d. The bargain 
is 6/. 135. id. a year rent charge for 140^., 
or 10 marks for 210 marks, i.e. twenty-one 
years* purchase. 

'^ Champneys in fragment, d, p. 32, infra. 
But this reading is probably correct, as the 
family of Champneys appears to have 
come into Somerset at a later date (J. 
CoUinson, ii. 223, <fec.). The family of 
Ghaneys, Cheney or De Canieto were land- 
owners temp. Ed. 1 (id. i. xxviii). This 
John Cheney was possibly Sir John Cheyney 
of Sheppey, Kent, who married Alianor, 
daughter and heir of Sir liobert Shottes- 
broke. He died 1467 (' Collect. Topogr. &c: 



[1834], i. 313. E. Hasted, ' Hist, of Kent ' 
[1782], ii. 661). Their eldest son was John 
Cheyney, knighted by the Earl of Richmond 
on his landing at Milford Haven in 1485, 
elected Knight of the Garter before April 
22, 1486, and summoned to Parliament as 
a baron in 1487 ; died 1495 (' Diet. Nat. 
Biog.' Supplement, i. 421). The second son 
was William Cheyney, mentioned below, 
who married the daughter of Sir Oeoffrey 
Boleyn, lord mayor of London in 1457, 
great-grandfather of Queen Anne Boleyn 
(• Collect. Topogr.' i. 314). He was sheriff 
of Kent in 1477 and 1485 (Hasted, I.e.) and 
received several grants from Hen. 7 
(W. Campbell, » Mat.' i. 157, 175, Ac). A 
branch of the family was settled at Spazton 
or Pakton, Somerset (* Collect. Topogr.' i. 
313. Inq. p. m. Henry 7, i. 248, 371, Ac). 
See also Culford v. Wotton, C, p. 48, n. 8. 
There was, however, another contem- 
porary John Cheney with a son William. 
This was Sir John Cheney of Fen Ditton, 
Cambs, and of Thenford, Northants ; died 
July 14, 1489, whose only son was after- 
wards Sir William Cheney. G. Baker, 
•Hist, of Northants' (1822-30), i. 714. 



28 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



Comitatu Somerset Centum marcas pro quibusmaneriumdechel worth ^^ 
im(pigneratur) ^ et ponitur in morgagium eidem Johanni vsque ad 
plenam solucionem earundem vltra quam solucionem plenariam dictus 
prioratus oneratur (eidem) ^ Johamii ac Willelmo filio suo in pensione 
Annua viginti sex solidorum & octo denariorum durante vita eorum 
vtriusque. 

ITEM Recepit de Johanne Chauunceler de Keynisham ^' in Comi- 
tatu Somercet Centum marcas pro solucione quarum dictus prioratus 
oner (at ur) et propter hoc concessit filio dicti Johannis Chauunceler 
pensionem Annuam quatuor marcarum vsque ad tempus quo pro- 
moueret (eum)^ ad beneficium viginti marcarum. 

ITEM Recepit de Ricardo Canynges de hampton iuxta bathoniam ^® 
pro Corodio sibi & vxore ' sue & filio suo ad terminum vite eorundem 
(et) ^ eorum alterius diucius viuentis . . . xl marcas. 

ITEM Recepit de Johanne Broke de lye abbatis ^® iuxta bristoll 
pro Corodio sibi & vxore * sue ad terminum vite . . . Ivij m (areas). ^' 

ITEM Recepit de Johanne Baboure de Tweuerton *" iuxta Batho- 
niam pro Corodio sibi et vxore * sue ad terminum vite 

xlviij (marcas). ^^ 

ITEM Recepit de Alicia Slougge matre sua & Agnete Exsten 
mater tera sua pro Corodio eis ad terminum vite concesso xl (li.).^^ 

ITEM Recepit de Willelmo Castell de bathonia pro fine tene- 
menti sui xx (li.).^^ 



As the entry in the text is probably an 
extract from the original dooament, which 
may have been drawn up before John 
Cheney received knighthood, the omission 
of any title proves nothing. 

'* Wyllemyndon, Wilmington, a hamlet 
of Priaton, about five miles S.W. of Bath. 
Priston had been granted to Bath Abbey 
by Athelstan. J. CoUinson, * Hist, of Somer- 
set/ i. 430. See n. 37, infra. 

•• Chelworth or Chelwood, W.N.W. of 
Priston, and nine miles S.W. of Bath. In 
the Computus of Bath Abbey at the Dis- 
solution is the following entry : 

Mancrium de Chelworth /. s. d, 

Bedditus Assise . . .328 
Finna Manerii . . .400 

Dugd. * Monast.* ii. 223. 

" Will proved in 1489, J. C. C. Smith, 
• Index of Wills,' i. 114. 

•" Probably connected with the great 
Bristol family. There was a Richard Can- 
ninge of Foxcote, Warwickshire, son of 
Thomas Canynges, lord mayor of London 
in 1456, who had married Agnes Salmon, 
the heiress of Foxcote. Thomas Canynges 



was son of John Canynges and grandson of 
William Canynges, the elder, of Bristol, 
and therefore (elder) brother of William 
Canynges the younger. I can find no other 
mention of K. C. Hampton belonged to 
the bishops of Bath and Wells. O. Pryce, 

* Memorials of the Canynges Family * (1864), 
Pedigree, i. p. 55, ii. p. 146. J. Collinson, 

* Hist. Somerset,' lit. 394. 

** Broke was the name of a family of 
large landed possessions in Somerset, but 
Collinson does not connect it with Abbot's 
Leigh, nor have I otherwise been able to 
identify this person. John Broke, second 
lord Cobham, succeeded to the barony on 
the death of his father in 1464, but does 
not appear to have owned land in Abbot's 
Leigh. See J. Collinson, * Hist, of Somer- 
set,' iii. 152, 303. 

^ Also the name of a landed family in 
Somerset. Tweverton, Twiverton, or 
Twerton is two miles S.S.W. of Bath. The 
will of John Baber or Babyr, of Chewstoke, 
Somerset, was proved in 1527 (J. C. C. 
Smith, 'Index,' i. 28). Chew Stoke is 
seven and a half miles S. of Bristol, and 
about nine miles W. of Tweverton. 



BATHE, PRIOR OF, V. ST. AUGUSTYN'S, CAUNTERBURY, ABBOT OF 29 

ITEM Recepit de Willelmo Schote de hampton iuxta bathoniam 
pro Reuercione vnius tenementi iiij (li.).^' 

ITEM Recepit de domina de hungerford '^ pro Relaxacione tituli 
in manerio de Crykoflf Thomas " in Comitatu Samercet ^ . xl (li.).^' 

ITEM Recepit de quodam hibernico vocato parys *^ pro fine vnius 
tenementi infra terram hibernie *^ situati . . . xx (li.)-^^ 

ITEM Recepit de magistro Johanni drouere pro vno corodio pro 
termino vite eidem concesso xx (li.).^' 

ITEM Recepit de domino Roberto Capellano suo pro Corodio ad 
terminum vite concesso xx (li.).^' 

ITEM Recepit de Willelmo Walley *^ de Bathonia pro fine molen- 
dini vj (li.)-^^ 

ITEM Recepit de Johanne Cole de oldeston ^^ in Comitatu Somer- 
cet pro sua manumissione " . . . x li.*® (xiij s. iiij d.).^^ 



** Probably Mary, lady Hungerford, as 
she styled herself (Nicolas, ' Hist. Peerage ' 
[1867], p. 260), daughter and heir of Sir 
Thomas Hungerford by Ann Percy, daughter 
of Henry Percy, third earl of Northumber- 
land (Collinson, * Hist, of Somerset,' iii. 
366. See Nicolas, ' Test. Vet.' i. 319). She 
married, before February 8, 1481, Edward 
Hastings lord Hastings of Hastings 
and Hungerford. She became in 1486 by 
the reversal of her father's attainder of 
1463 suo jure Baroness Hungerford. Lord 
Hastings died November 8, 1506, and his 
widow in 1511 married Sir Richard Sache- 
verell of Batcliffe on Soar, Notts. She died 
between 1528 and 1534. G. E. C, ' Com- 
plete Peerage * (1892), iv. 186. Gf. also p. 
69, n. 11, infra. 

" Now Cricket St. Thomas. According 
to Collinson (iii. 116) this manor and ad- 
vowson passed to the Hungerfords by the 
marriage of Margaret, daughter and heir of 
William Botreaux, lord Botreaux, to Robert 
second baron Hungerford, who died in 1459, 
leaving Robert third baron Hungerford 
(attainted and beheaded 1463) his son and 
heir (Nicolas, * Hist. Peerage,' pp. 66, 260). 
Neither manor nor advowson appears 
among the estates of the abbey in the 
computus made at the dissolution (1640), 
Dugd. ' Monast.' ii. 273. 

"^ Not an uncommon name in the Mid- 
dle Ages. See sub Paris, Matthew, in 
» Diet. Nat. Biog.' 

** There were cells to the priory both at 
Waterford and Cork (Dugd. ii. 263), but no 
mention of land in Ireland occurs in the 
computus (Dugd. ii. 273). T. Tanner 
(* Notitia Monastica ' [1744], pp. 461, 462) 
cites charters which show that the abbey 



received grants of land in Ireland temp. 
John, some of which it exchanged for lands 
in England temp. Ed. 3. But in the reign 
of Henry 4 it stUl maintained a connexion 
with the hospital of St. John at Waterford, 
and that the connexion lasted till the 
Dissolution is suggested by the present of 
Irish hawks which the prior made to 
Cromwell. F. A. Gasquet, * Hen. 8 and the 
EngUsh Monasteries' (2nd ed., 1888), i. 
418. 

" One of a family of citizens of Bath. 
J. Collinson, i. 31. 

^ In the computus of 1540 the entry 
runs: 

Olueston cum Reotoria I, 8, d. 

Redditus liberorum Te- 

nentium . . . . 2 16 10 

Redditus Assise . . . 19 12 4 
Redditus Terre et Tenementi 

pertinentis Rectorie . 3 8 

Firma Rectorie . . . 17 16 

Perquisitiones Curie . . nihil. 

The total revenue derived from this place 
was therefore 43^ 135. lOd. It is reckoned 
in the computus also as in Somerset, as is 
Bristoll, which there follows next in order. 
I identify it with Olveston, in Gloucester- 
shire, nine miles N. of Bristol. In T. 
Tanner, * Notitia Monastica,' p. 462, it is 
given as Orleston (Glocestr.). 

" I.e. of a nativus or bondman by blood. 
On the continuance of bondage in England 
see I. S. Leadam, ' Law Quarterly Review,' 
ix. 348 : ' The last days of Bondage in 
England.' 

** The first of the two paper leaves on 
which this account is written ends here. 



30 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



ITEM Recepit de Johanne Gravell de Inglesbache *® iuxta Batho- 
niam pro fine rectorie appropriate dicto prioratui posite ad firmam 

(xlvij 8. viij d.).^' 

ITEM Recepit de Johanne de bathweke '^ iuxta Bathoniam pro 
Corodio eisdem ^ concessus * . . . . vj li. xiij s. iiij d.'^ 

Summa totalis dicte Recepte vj*^ Ix vij li. xij s. iiij d.'* 

ITEM dictus venerabilis pater dompnus Johannes dunster nuper 
prior Ante dictus devastauit staurum '^ Maneriorum dictum .^"^ 

IN PRIMIS de manerio de Sothstoke ^^ iiij Capita bourn cum j 
Tauro. 

ITEM de Manerio de Combe ^® iij Capita boum ij Capita vaccarum 
iij Capita Bouiculorum et quinque .** 

ITEM de Manerio de preston '^ j taurum xiij Capita boum viij 
Capita vaccarum & quinque vitulorum. 

ITEM de manerio Coston ^® x Capita boum viij Capita vaccarum 
& xiij Capita bouiculorum cum j tauro. 



» A hamlet in Inglishoombe, the church 
of which still displays the arms of Bath 
Abbey (J. GoUinson, iii. 340-S41). In the 
oomputus of 1540 the *Firma Rectorie* 
appears as 11. 10s. 

"> This looks like a place name in 
default of a surname. 

" The sum, when compared with the 
prices paid for double corodies above, looks 
as though ' eisdem ' was a mistake for 
* eidem.* 

« The sum of receipts at the time of 
the construction of the refectory, i.e. begin- 
ning with lady Estmounde, is 5592. Is. The 
inclusion of the two previous accounts of 
602. 6s. Sd. and 84Z. brings up the total 
to 7032. 6s. Sd. 

* Staurum, store. From the examples 
given by Du Cange it appears to be a wonl 
exclusively of English use. 

'* A word missing. Paper torn. 

** In the computus of 1540 the following 
entry occurs (Dugdale, ' Monast.' ii. 272) : 



Manerium de Sowthstockc 
Bedditus Assise 
Firma Manerii 
Bedditus Mobilium 
Perquisitiones Curie 



/. s. d. 



9 

12 





2 ob 
2 

2 ob 

1 



The total revenue from this manor was 
therefore 212. 17s. Bd. South Stoke is two 
miles S.W. of Bath. See J. Collinson, i. 
136. 

" The computus of 1640 gives (Dugd. 
I.8.C.) : 



Manerium de Combe 


2. s. d. 


Bedditus Assise 


. 7 19 10 


Firma Manerii 


. 13 14 4 


Bedditus Mobilium . 


.039 


Perquisitiones Curie 


. nihil 



The total revenue from this manor was 
therefore 212. 17s. lid. Combe Monkton or 
Monkton Combe is three miles S. of Bath. 
The manor was held by the abbey at the 
time of Domesday. Collinson, i. 151. 

■* The computus of 1640 gives (Dugd. 
l.s.c.) : 



Manerium de Preston 
Bedditus Assise 
Firma Manerii 
Bedditus Mobilium . 
Perquisitiones Curie 



2. s. 

17 19 

11 8 

4 

13 



The total revenue from this manor was 
therefore 307. 5s. Od. It appears in Collin- 
son as Priston. See n. 15 supra. 

*• The computus of 1640 gives (Dugd. 
I.8.C.) : 



2. s. d. 



ob 



Manerium de Corston cum 
Bectoria 

Bedditus Assise . . 13 4 

Firma Manerii . . 12 

Firma Bectorie . .200 

Bedditus Mobilium . .063 

Perquisitiones Curie . 3 11 1 ob 

The total revenue from this manor was 
therefore 312. Is. 6e2. 

The above extract corrects a mistake of 



BATHE, PRIOR OF, V. ST. AUGUST YN'S, CAU]STP:RHURY, AHBOT OF 31 

ITEM de manerio de Northstoke ^^ ij Capita bourn & vij Capita 
vaccarum cum j tauro. 

ITEM de Manerio de lymcombe *" xij Capita boum. 

ITEM de Manerio de hainewell ^^ xxx Capita boum vaccarum et 
bouiculorum. 

Debita que debentur tempore dicti venerabilis prioris dompni 
Johannis Dunster in quibus dictus prioratus Redditur 
obnoxius certis creditoribus vt sequitur. 

IN PKIMIS Fraternitati Sancti Georgii in Ecclesia Sancti Jacobi 
Bathoniensis vj li. quas recepit. 

ITEM Isabelle Browkedc Bathonia xxxix li. xiij s. iiij d. quas recepit 
nomine mutui. 

ITEM Johanni barbor de bathonia . . . iiij li 

ITEM Andree Bedforth ^^ de bathonia . . . xj li. 

ITEM Ricardo fluet ^^ de penford *^ . . . . Ixxxxij li. 

ITEM de Johanni Gaynard de Brystoll marcatori . xx li. 



Collinson, iii. 345, who cites ' Regist. Priorat. 
Bathon/ for the statement that the abbey, 
which held this manor in Domesday, 
alienated it to the family of St. Lo in 
exchange for other lands temp. Hen. 1. It 
appears, however, from Collinson*s refer- 
ences, that there was a lay manor here, and 
it must be inferred from this document and 
from Dugdale that a lay and an ecclesi- 
astical manor co-existed. 

Corston is four miles W.S.W. of Bath. 

■• The computus of 1540 gives (Dugd. 
1.8.0.) : 



I. s. d. 



Northstocke 

Bedditus Assise 
Firma Mancrii 
Firma Grcgis . 
Agistamenta . 
Pcrquisitiones Curie 



8 11 
8 15 
7 
1 13 
13 



6 ob 

4 



4 

4 



The total revenue from the manor was 
therefore 26/. IBs. G^J. The manor was 
given to the abbey about 800 a.d. by Kcnulf. 
king of Mercia. It lies about four miles 
N.W. of Bath. Collinson, i. 134. 

*" The computus of 1540 gives (Dugd. 
I.8.C.) : 

/. s. d. 



combe et Wydcombe 




Bedditus Uberonmi te- 




nentium 


15 7 


Bedditus Assise 


19 2 8 


Manerium de Lyncombe. 




Firma Manerii . 


19 7 8 


Gerti liedditus cum 




operibus 


15 10 ob 



The total revenue from the manor was 
therefore 40Z. Is. ^\d, 

Wydcombe or Widcombe • is situate 
on the y. side of the Avon, which divides 
it from Bath ' (Collinson, i. 168). At the 
time of the Domesday survey the two 
manors were worth 12/. yearly (id. p. 171). 
Lyncombe is contiguous to Wydcombe. 

^* The computus of 1540 gives (Dugd. 
(I.S.C.): 

/. s. d. 
Hameswell, (Tatwyke et Colde- 
assheton 
Firma Manerii. . . 24 
Bedditus Assise . . 18 7 2 
Bedditus Mobilium . .030 
Pcrquisitiones Curie . 17 



The total revenue was therefore 43/. 7s. 2d, 
But this represents two manors, viz. 
that of Cold Aston, in Gloucestershire, in 
which Hameswell was situate (S. Budder, 
'Hist, of Gloucestershire' [1779], p. 240). 
and Swanswick or Swainswick, in which 
Tatwyke was situate. Collinson, i. 154. 

On the inferences derivable from the 
accounts of these manors Hn<l of the waste 
alleged to have been committed by the 
abbot, see Introd., pp. Ixxii-lxxiii, supra. 

" Beturned to Parliament for the City 
of Bath in 1467. Collinson, i. 21. 

" Probably the Hichard Fluett, of 
St. James's parish, Hath, whose will was 
proved in 1497. J. C. C. Smith, • Index,' 
i. 205. 

'* Pensford ; about eight miles W. of 
Bath. 



32 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

ITEM de Johanni payne de mellis . . . . vj li. 
ITEM de Waltero lyncell de BrystoU Marcatori . iij li. vj s.^* 

Summa debiti predict! . . . viij'''' xj li.**^ 

In quorum omnium et fidem & testimonium SigiUum nostrum 
Commune presentibus apposuimus. Datum in D(omo) nostra 
Capitulari quartodecimo die mensis Februarii Anno domini millesimo 
ccccl(xxxiij) *^ Et Anno Regni Regis Bicardi tercii post conquestum 
Anglie primo/' 



(Fi)rst the said Abbot then prior ' of Bath ' ressauid of the lady 
Esemund wydoe for a certen annuite of x marcs to her grauntyd 

cxl li. 

(Also) * the seid Abbot let at ' morgage * * J(ohn) 

Champneys the manor of Chell worth for the wh(ich) * * seid 

prior resseuyd of the same John c marcs. 

(Also) * the seid Abbot resseyuyd of John * (Chauunc)eler **' * ^ 
* * for the repaiment to ^ the seid * * * * Hamdon & 

ouer that grauntyd the same John & to John his son * * 

Annuyte of iiij marcs wherwith the seid prior is chargyd vnto the 
same John * * be promotyd to a benefyce of xx marcs. 

(Also the sei)*d Abbot resceyued of Richard Canynges of Hampton 
beside Bathon xl marcs. 

(Also the) ^ same Abbot ressauyd of John Broke of lye abbatis 
beside Bristoll for a corodye to hym & his wyf for terme (of 
their ly)*ves Ivij marcs. 

(Also the sei)d^ Abbot hath ressauyd of John Barbour of 
Teyuerton beside Bath for a corodye to hym & to (his) ^ wyf for 
terme of their lyves xlviij marcs. 

Also the seid Abbot resseyved of Alice Slugge his moder & Agnes 
Exston for a Corodye to theym for terme of their lyves . xl li. 

Also the same Abbot resceyued of William Castell of Batheston 
beside Bath for a fyne for a tenement . . . . xx li. 

Also the same Abbot resceyued of William Shote de Hampton 
beside Bath for the reuersion of a tenement . . . iiij li. 

*^ The sum amounts to 1822. See Ap- much injured by damp and torn, 
pendix : Summary of Accounts, vii. p. 35. * Parchment torn. 

** The rest of the date torn off. Reckon- ' Beading doubtful, MS. very illegible, 

ing the year as beginning March 25, the * Hlegible. 

missing figures would be * xxxiij.' * Qu. Jane with some word preceding it 

" 1484, N.S. interlined. MS. very illegible. 

' This is a fragment of parchment ' Restored from the Latin version, p. 28. 



BATHE, PRIOR OF, V. ST. AUGUSTYN'S, CAUNTERBURY, ABBOT OF 83 

Also the same Abbot hath ressauyd of lady hungerford for a 
relesse of a title in the manor of (CrykoOf' Thomas in comitatu 
Somerset xl li. 

(Als)o * the same Abbot ressayued of on hibernico callyd parys for 
a Fyne of a tenement lette within the land (of) * Irelond xx li. 

(Also) the same Abbot reseeuyid of master John Drover for a 
Corodie to hym grauntyd for terme of lyf ... xx li. 

(Also the) * same Abbot resceyved of sir Robert his Chapeleyn for 
a Corodye to hym grauntyd for terme of his lif . . xx li. 

(Also the sam)e* Abbot resceyved of William Walley of Bath for 
a Fyne of a milne vj li. 

(Also the) * same Abbot resceyvyd of John Cole of Oldeston in the 
Countie of Somerset for his manumyssion . x li. xiij s. iij d.' 

(Also t)^ he same Abbot resceyued of John Gravell of Inglisshcombe 
beside Bath for a Fyne of a parsonage appropried (to the)* seid 
Priorye & lett to ferme to the seid John . . . xlvij s. viij d. 

(Al)so * the seid Abbot resceyued of John of Bathwyk for a corodye 
to hym graunt for terme of his lyflf . . . vj li. xiij s. iiij d. 



B. The shewyng off John thabbott off seynt Augustynez besides 
Canterbury concernyng a matier bitwen hym and the priour 
off Bath. 

The seid Abbott seith that the matier off the byll off the seid 

priour is insufficient and he owith nott to be putt to answere there 

vnto nor to be called hider opon the seid matier for such consideracion 

as haith ben shewed by the seid Abbott in a byll late putt in by hym 

. as by the statute alleged by the seid Abbott and by the statute off 

, magna carta in which the grete sentence off holy church is yeuen 

I opon them that be brekers theroff ^ and by dyuerse other statutes it 

haith bene laudably ordeyned enacted and establisshed. And wher 

the seid priour surmitteth pouertye in hym and his monastery to 

thentent to cause the seid Abbott to be putt to answere her, the seid 

Abbott seith that that is no consideracion to cause hym to be putt to 

' The price of manumission of Thomas tion against all those that by word, deed. 

Carter by the Abbot of Malmesbury between or counsel do contrary to the foresaid 

1424 and 14S4 was 40 marks (26L 13«. 4^2.). charters, or that in any point break or 

See Carter V. Malmesbury, Abbot of, p. 118. undo them. And that the said curses be 

* Bef erring to Edward I's confirmation twice a year denounced and published by 

of the charters in 1297, art. 4. * And that the prelates aforesaid.* W. Stubbs, * Select 

all archbishops and bishops shall pro- Charters ' (7th ed. 1890), p. 496. 
nounce the sentence of great excommunica- 



34 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



answer her and is butt feyned by the seid Priour to putt the seid 
Abbott and his monastery to eoste troble and vexacion For the seid 
priour nor his monastery is nott in any such pouertye as is by hym 
surmitted. For the seid priour commonly rideth with xviij horses or 
theraboute and his seruantes all in one lyverey or clothyng' And 
vseth nott hym self lyke to a man beyng in pouertye nethyr in his 
ridyng ner in his other dedes Wherfor the seid Abbott prayeth and 
demaundeth as he haith prayed and demaunded in his other bill &c. 



APPENDIX. 

SUMMARY OF ACCOUNTS. 
ACCOUNT I. 



Pnid by 


Sam paid down 


No. of yeaw* 
purchane. 


Object 


Corporation of Plimmoth 


Marks 
(162) 


108 


18 


Commutation of fee farm ' 
rent of 9 marks. 



II. 



Paid by 


Sum paid down 


No. of years* 
piiroba«c 


Obioot 


Joan Atwell 
Thomas More . 
John Thweneho 


Marku 

(150) 
300 
400 

850 


£ ». d. 
100 
(200 0) 
266 13 4 

566 13 4 


50 

33^ 

26i 


Perpetual annuity of 21. i 
6/. 1 
10/. I 

18/. " 







Value of plate carried away 



III. 



84Z. Os. Od. 



IV. 



Value of plate, vestments, &c. . 



. 60/. 6s. 8d. 



' Bather a plea ad invidiam than a sug- 
p,estion of an offence against the Statutes 
of Liveries. By the act of 1468 (8 Edw. 4. 



c. 2) no man might give livery or badge or 
retain any person other than his menial 
servant, &e. See Introd. p. Ixv, 



BATHE, PRIOR OF, V. ST. AUGUSTYN'S, CAUNTERBURY, ABBOT OF 35 



V. 



Paid by 



; Estmoande 
I Ghaneys . 
Chawnceler 



Ganynges. 
Broke 
Baboure . 
Slougge . 
Gastell . 
Sohote 
Hongerford 
Parys 
Drover 
Sir Robert 
Walley . 
Gole 

Gravell . 
Bathweke 



Sum paid down 



Marks 
(210) 

100 

100 



40 
67 
48 

m 

(30) 
(6) 
(60) 
(30) 
(30 
(30 

(9 
(16) 
(3J + 1S.) 



£ s. fl. 

140 

(66 13 4) 

(66 13 4) 

(26 13 4) 

(38 0) 



(32 
40 
20 

4 
40 
20 
20 
20 

6 



10 13 
2 7 
6 13 



No. of years' 
purchase 



559 14 4 



21 



50 



Annuityof 6/. 135.4<i.(10 

marks). 
Annuity of 11, 6s. Sd. for 

2 lives. 
Annuity of 21. 138. 4d. 

conditional : interim 

4 per cent. 
Gorody, 3 lives. 
Gorody, 1 life. 
Gorody, 2 lives. 
Gorody, 2 lives. 
Fine. 

Sale of reversion. 
Surrender of title. 
Fine. 

Gorody, 1 life. 
Gorody, 1 life. 
Fine. 

Manumission. 
Fine. 
Gorody, ? 1 life. 



VI. 

Acts of Waste. 



— 


Oxen 


Cows 


Calves • 


Balls 


Sheep ? 


Sothstoke .... 


4 


_ 


_ 


1 





Gombe 








3 


2 


3 





5 


Preston 








13 


8 


5 








Goston 








10 


8 


13 


1 


— 


Northstoke 








2 


7 


— 


1 


— 


Lymcombe 








12 


— 


— 


— 


— 


Hainewell ' 








(10) 


(10) 


(10) 


— 


— 




64 


35 


31 


3 


6 






■ - 





— 


— 



The average price of oxen in 1481-90 was I65. Oid. ; of calves 2s. l|d. ; ' oxen are 
double the price of cows ' ; * as a rule 10a. is the maximum price for a bull. The average 
price of muttons in 1481-90 is 25. 4d.' (J. E. T. Rogers, ' Hist. Agr. and Prices,' iv. 331-356). 
Upon these data, assuming the * quinque ' at Gombe to refer to sheep, we have the following 
approximate money value of the abbot's acts of waste : — oxen, 611. 5s. 4d. ; cows, 14Z. ; 
calves, 3Z. 6s. lOJd. ; bulls, 11. 10s. ; sheep, 11a. 8d. ; total, 70/. 12s. lO^d. 



* Oxen, cows, and calves together num- 
bered thirty. The calves at Gombe were 



* boviculi ' (steers) ; at Preston vituli ; at 
Goston and Hainewell, boviculi. 

p 2 



36 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

vn. 

£ j«. d 

Received from Gild of St. George. Bath (> 

Isabelle Browke 39 13 4 * 

John Uarbor 4 

Andrew Bedforth 1100 

Richard Flnet 92 

John Gaynard 20 

John Payne 600 

Walter Lyncell 3 6 (8) ' 

182*0 



COUPER V, GERVAUX AND OTHERS.' 

To the kyng cure soueraign lorde and the lordes 
of his most honorable Counsell spirituell & 
1498 temporell 

Shewith and greuously complayneth vnto youre moost noble 
grace youre true & feithfull Subget hugh Couper Citezein & draper of 
youre Citie of london how that Where as he & many othre merchauntes 
of your said Citie haue of long contynuaunee vsed to resorte euery yere 
vnto the Feyre of Salesbury there holden & kept at oure lady day in 
lent * in the Comen market place of that Citie and euery man to haue 
his conuenient Rowme there to vttre in suche wares & goodes as he 
bringith thydder to and for the same entent during the season that 
the feire contynueth and at their departing to reward suche Officers as 
be appoynted therfore by the same Citie euery man of his curtesy for 
the standing at his pleassur and nothing of duetie, Trouth it is 
gracious lord that at oure lady day was twelvemoneth ^ one John 
Gervaux of the same Citie goldsmyth and John Chapman * of the 
same Chapman came to ^ the bothe of youre said Oratoure and' of hym 
asked iiij** for euery foote of grounde that he occupied bering hym in 

- Nomimilly a loan. R. C. Hoare, * History of Mo<lem Wiltshire ' 

' Conjectural ; pai>cr tom ; pence (1843), vol. vi. (R. Benson and H. Hatcher), 

missing. P- 741. The fair is mentioned in the 

* The sum is given as in the text 171/. Act of 3 Hen. 7, c. 9 (' An Acte that the 
Sec p. 32, n. 45, supra. Cytizens of London maye carry all manner 

* S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 29. of Wares to forraync Markcttes ') as one 

* Edward 2, during the episcopate of of the seven provincial fairs of the most 
Roger de Mortival (1315-29), granted by importiince. 

cliarter to the bishop of Salisbury and his ' March 25, 1491. 

successors the perpetual right to hold a fair * Mentioned in 1469 as a collector of 

yearly from the vigil of the Annunciation to the king's ale (cerevisia regalis), Hoare, ib. 

the morrow of its octjive (March 24 to p. 246. The money collected appears to 

April 2) v^ith all liberties and customs have been expended in the purchase of 

thereunto belonging not prejudicial to the vestments, ib. 

rights of fairs in the neighbonrhoo<l. See * Beading doubtful. 



COUPER V. GERVAUX AND OTHERS 37 

hande that it was theire duetie so for to haue the contrary wherof is 

openly knowen to be true and so because he asked theym what auc- 

toritie they had to shew for theym wh[ereby] * to clayme the seid 

duetie they al to reviled hym & called hym knaue with other cruell 

& dispiteing wordes & thretes and there made assaute vpon hym, and 

finally by the supportacion & mayntenaunce of one Blakar® then 

maire there toke from hym by force & playne extorcioun a distresse 

[of his] ^ goodes and the same caried awey with theym at theire plea- 

surs without his love or leve expressely ayenste youre lawes to his 

grete hurt & wronges. And furthremore by the supportacion com- 

forte and mayntenaunce of one Thomas Coke maire there the last 

yere ^ your said Oratoure being ** at the said feire there 

came to his stalle one William halle the Bisshopps vndre baillyf ^ there 

and then & there made a grete assaute vpon hym and hym threte to 

kill and slee out of hande without he wolde pay the seid money aftre 

theire asking whervnto they haue no right which they nor none can 

shewe as it is euidently knowen ^^ but onely of theire riall *^ powere by 

myght & extorcioun, by meane of whiche trouble the same baillyff 

caused youre said Oratoure clerely to lose his feire & feate of mer- 

chaundise at that tyme to his grete hurt & losse fere and jeopardie of 

his lyfe In somuche that lest he shuld haue ben murdred & slayne 

there amonges theym he was fayne to gette hym out of the Citie as 

hastely as he couth by possibilitie and yett as priuely as he departed 

thens the said baillif vttrely set and disposed to haue slayne hym lay 

in a waite ^^ vppon hym with iij hors & asmany men arayed in maner 

of werre and in riottoux wise that is to sey with swordes & buklers 

speres and othre defencible wapyns and on horsbak moflfeld euerychone 

bicause they wold not be knowen & so pursued and folowed hym from 

the seid Citie of Sarum to Andover ^^ bi theire « 

above said wher your said Oratoure mette with men of london as his 

** Thomas Blacker, mayor in 1489 and bishop, assigned to William (? Thonms) 

1490. Blacker, the mayor, and the commonalty oi 

' Thomas Coke, mayor in 1491 (Hoarc, Sarum the profits of the sUmdings in fairs, 

vi. 696). markets and other places within the city. 

■ Parchment torn. A committee of four persons was then 

* * For a long series of years the bailiffs appointed in convocation to set out for the 

of the Bishop took precedency of the mayor ensuing year all manner of booths, stalls 

of the city.' Hoare, vi. 698. Apparently and standing places at such prices as they 

this continued until a charter of James 1 should deem reasonable. For these profits 

vested in the mayor and commonalty the they were to account to the mayor and 

privilege of electing a bailiff and deputy- commonalty. Apparently then the charge 

bailiff, ib. William Ilali was in dispute was a new one, as complainant avers, 
with tiie mayor in 1491, ib. p. 208. " I.e. Absolute. The same use of the 

'• The City Ledger B, fol. 174, B, cited word occurs on p. 46. 
by Hoare (vi. 208), shows that in 1490 " Of. p. 115, n. 9. 

John Becket, clerk of the market for the '■ Seventeen miles and three quarters. 



38 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

grace ^* was ^* & to theym resorted for saufgard of his lyfe & rode 
home with theym and so avoided theire malice at that tyme. Please 
it your good grace in consideracion of the premissez considering this 
youre said Oratoure [has] * noun power to sue your comen lawe for his 
remedie in this partie ayeinst the said Citie by whom this matier is 
borne out of wilfulnesse onely without eny laufuU grounde of your 
grete bountie to graunte hervpon your gracious lettres of priue seale 
directed to the seid Thomas Coke William Hall [John]** Gervaux 
goldsmyth & John Chapman Chapman Charging theym streitly by 
the same to be and appere personally before your grace and youre 
said Counsell at youre palaice of Westminster vpon a reasonable peyne 
in the Vtas ^® of the Purificacion of oure blessed lady next commyng 
to a[n8wer] ** vnto the premisses and to suche thinges as then & there 
shall be obiected & layd ayenst theym at the reuerence of God and 
in wey of Charitee. 

In another hand. Emanarunt inde breuia sub priuato sigillo 
domini nostri Regis prout petitur primo die Februarii A[nno] ^ [regni 
regis] ** Henrici vij"'* octauo ^' ad comparendum apud Westmonasterium 
in octabis *^ Purificacionis beate marie virginis proximo future s[ub] ^ 
pena cuiuslibet eorum xl li. 

Indorsed. Hugh Cooper contra Sarum. 



VALE V. BROKE.^ 

A. To the Kyng our Soueraigu lorde and the dis- 
ci-ete lordes of his moost noble Coiinseill 

1498 Lamentablie compleynyng showith vnto youre highnesse youre 
humble Subgiet and true ligeman Symon Vale * of Castell Bromwiche ^ 
in youre Countie of Warrewyk, That Where oone John Broke and 
Alice his wiff of the same Towne of thaire grete malices and euyll 
willcs beryng to youre saide besechei^ and to thentent vtterly to shame 
hym and his foreuer, hath openly disclaundred hym amonges his 

' * Henry 7 frequently hunted in the whose ohief seat had been at Ludington or 

New Forest. Lodinton, near Stratford. W. Dugdale, 

'^ Qu. * there ' omitted. ' Antiquities of Warwickshire ' (1765), pp. 

i« The eighth day, i.e. the seventh day 491a, 442b. 

after the feast, or February 9. See p. 231, ' About 5} miles N.E. of Birmingham. 

n. 12. Apparently so caUed from a small castle of 

" 1493. which only the tumulus remains visible 

' S.G.P. Hen. 7, No. 48. commanding the ford over the Tame, held 

* Vale or de Valle was the name of an in 1270 by Henricus del Chastel de 

ancient knightly family in the county Bromwyz. W. Dugdale, ib. p. G20a. 



:v3gut 



VALE t\ BROKE 39 

neighburs that he his wiff children and all his kynne shulde be stronge 
theves and Comyn Bobbers where as his neyghburs and other inhabi- 
tantes in his Gontrey will recorde he is a true man and all his house- 
holde also, And ouer this the saide John Broke of his said malice 
hath suf&red his bestes through his owne grounde to distroye the 
greynes of youre saide besecher to thentent vtterly to distroy and 
vndo him, Consederyng gracious Souereigtie lorde that the said John 
Broke hath saide and done thies iniuries to youre saide besecher sith 
an obligacion of xl. li sealed and deliuered by hym to youre saide 
besecher was forfeyt, whiche obligacion is redy to be showed, In con- 
sideracion of the premisses. And that youre saide Oratour ys not able 
to sue the saide John Broke and his wif for his remedy at youre Comyn 
lawe ^ And that also the saide John Broke of his grete power holdith 
grete landes in the said parisshe of his lorde there and ys his Baillief,^ 
for the whiche he payeth noo taske ^ to youre grace ^ but compelleth 
youre saide besecher and other his power neighburs aboute hym to 
pay his taske and tallage ^ to youre saide grace for the lande he occu- 
pieth and holdeth to thaire grete hurtes and impouerisshment. And also 
by his said grete power the saide John and his wifif ar Comyn re- 
cey vours of thy ves and vacaboundes for money to hym youen. And also 
is a Comyn resettour^ and maynteners of Comyn queues pristes 
lemans and kepith them for money in his house by vj or vij wekes 
and wole nat suflfre them for his lucre to come to chirche to here 
goddes seruice to the grete Oborce^^ of all his pouer neighburs 
about hym and disclaundre to all the Contrey, So that for drede of 
hym and of suche persones adherauntes to the saide theves and queues, 
he for drede of his dethe dare nat contynue in his pouer hous, but of 
necessitie must inhabite hym in other places. And for the true pruff 
of the premisses, yf nede be, all the honest inhabitance of the saide 
parisshe wole yf thay be comaunded by your grace be redy to come 

* See Introd., pp. oxxxi-cxxxii. impositions or other burthens or charge put 

^ The lord of the manor was John or set upon any man & so is expounded in 

Devereux, lord Ferrers of Ghartley, b. our books.* Coke, 2 Inst. 533. 
1463, d. 1501. Sir N. H. Nicolas, * Historic * I.e. receptor. To reset seems to have 

Peerage ' (1857), p. 186. Dugdale, Ls.c. been used with this connotation. 

Qi, * !^^. ^^'"^ ? V- ^f n qSJ? ^- ^- ' ' And ye hit make and that me greves 
Sk^t * Etymolo^ca^ Diet.* (1882), 8.v. ^ ^^^ ^o reset inne theves.* 

' I cannot nnd that any land was held 

here either by the Crown or the Duchy of Cursor Mundi, MS. Coll. Trin. Cant. f. 91, 

Lancaster. This, therefore, presumably quoted by J. O. Halliwell, * Diet, of Archaic 

refers to the fifteenth and tenth granted by Words * (1860), 8.v. The receipt of stoleir 

the Parliament which met on Oct. 17, 1491, goods knowing them to be stolen was a 

the last instalment of which was payable by common law offence. Frequent cases of it 

Nov. 11, 1492. See Statutes 7 Hen. 7, o. are to be found in • Select Pleas of the 

11, * Concernens xv«.' Crown ' (Selden Soc. 1887), dating from the 

' * Tallagium is a generall word & doth beginning of the thirteenth century, 
include all subsidies, taxes, tenths, fifteens, '" Qu. abuse. 



40 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

aflfore youre highnesse and youre saide Counseill at thaire propre costes 
to reporte the same. Please it youre highnesse the premisses graci- 
ously considred And that the said John Broke here now present for 
his false defamacion ^^ and other hurtes to hym done And also for the 
saide mysbehavyng m ly be punysshed, Aceordyng to his desert as 
right requireth. This lor the loue of god and in the waye of charite 
And he shall pray to god for the preseruacion of youre full noble and 
Boyall estate. 

Indorsed. Symon Vale contra Johannem Broke & Aliciam 
vxorem suam. 

DONYNGTON v. BROKE.* 

B. To the kyng oure Souereigne lorde and the discrete lordes 
of his moost noble Gounsell 

Lamentablie compleynyng showith vnto youre grace your faithful! 
Subgiet and true ligeman William Donyngton " of Castell Bromwiche 
in youre Countie of Warrewyk, That where oone John Broke and alice 
his wyflf of the same Towne, Of thaire prepensed malice and euyll wille 
beryng vnto youre saide besecher and to thentente vtterly to destroye 
hym his wiff and Children for euer hathe openly noysed and deffamed 
hym amonges his neghburs that he shulde felounesly Stele ij Oxen 
and them shulde ette in muresauce ^ at Castell Bromwiche forsaid, 
And wille nat showe of whom he shuld stele the said Oxen, 
where gracous souereigne lorde youre said besecher is a true man and 
neuer mynded hym to doo suche thinges, as all his neyghburs in the 
Contrey where he dwellyth and elles where in the saide Countie will 
testefye and recorde the same, Wherfore please it youre Jiighnes the 
premisses graciously considred, and the wrongefull defamacion and 
shame * that they wolde put hym to in his Contrey and he nat giltie 

'* See Introd., p. cxxxii. * This is a term of art. It is analo- 

* 8.G.P. Hen. 7, No. 48. goas to the * moral ' damage of the Boman- 

' A person of this name, presumably a Datch Law for which compensation was 

gentleman of the county, was nominated a claimed after the raid into the Transvaal. 

commissioner in 10 Hen. 6 (1481-32), to A thirteenth-centary example of it, among 

seize into the King's hands the monastery of others, ocoars in * Select Civil Pleas' 

Alcester. Dagdale,* Warwickshire,' p. 541b. (Selden Soc. 1889), pi. 183, in which case 

' Brine. In Palsgrave's * Lesclarcisse- the abbot of St. Edmund's (Bury) brought 

ment' Q530, ed. Ginin, Paris, 1852, p. an action against the bishop of Ely for 

244b) : * Mere sauce for flesshe — savlmure ' trespass upon the abbot's liberty and other 

(mod. French aaumure. See Littr^, s.v. prooieedings : *ita quod abbas non vellet 

Saomure; also Halliwell, s.v. Meresauce). habere pudorem quern episcopus ei fecit 

ette for name tense occurs in Hampole's pro o. libris neo dampnum pro c. marcis. 

* Pricke of Conscience,' line 4675 (Northern Et episoopus defendit dampnum et pudorem 

diaJect). eius,' &o. 



DONYNGTON V. BKOKE 41 

therof, So to provide for hym that the saide John Broke and Alice his 
wiff here nowe present aflfore youre grace and the lorde ^ of your dis- 
crete Counseill may be punysshed after thaire desertes, for the pure 
declaracion of the trouthe of youre saide besecher and to compell the 
saide John and Alice to shewe the names of the Aweners ® of the saide 
ij Oxen of whom your saide besecher shulde stele them from. This 
for the loue of god and in the waye of Charite, And your said besecher 
shall dayly pray to god for the preseruacion of youre moost noble 
and Boyall estate &c. 

Indorsed. Willelmus Donyngton contra Johannem 
Broke et Alitiam vxorem suam. 



SMYTH V. BROKE.' 
C. 

' pituously sheweth vnto youre 
highness *^ *^ *^ humble pouer subge[ts]^ [Eichard 
Smyth and Elizabeth his wi]f ^ of Castelbromwiche in youre Countie 
of Warwyke how that he went of late * ^ * ^ * ^ 

and bought of oon Thomas feldworth of the same Towne a ston 
of wool/ which your said suppliant brought with hym home to his 
owne hous, Therupon Alice the wif of John Broke of the said Castel 
Bromwiche of pure malice withoute any iuste matier or lauful cause 
came to the hous of youre said suppliant and said vnto his wif that 
thay had stolne the same wole from hir out of hir husbondes hous. 
And furthewith the same Alice went to a village called Orton ^ and 
feched from a weyver there two Bothumys ^ of hir owne yern and 
came ayen to the hous of youre said oratour and called hym stronge 
thefe and his wife herlot and asked of thaym how thay wold answer 
to hir husbond and hir of the same wool that youre said suppliant 
and his wif had stolne from theym and youre said suppliantes said 
thay bought the same wole truely and paied for it in the presence of 
oone Thomas Jakson of the said Castelbromwiche, whiche wil testifie 
the same matier. And furthwith the forsaid Alice Broke furiously 
came to the hous of youre said suppliantes and with a naxe ^ in hir 

* Sio. the stone of wool was fixed at fourteen 

* Owners. pounds, which was probably its customary 

* S.CP. Hen. 7, No. 48. weight. 

' The two or three opening words are * Presumably Water Orton in Warwick- 
indecipherable, the first three lines of this shire, N.E. of Castle Bromwich. 
MS. having been much injured by damp. ' A bottom is * a clew or nucleus on 

' MS. indecipherable, being much which to wind thread ; also a skein or ball 

damaged by damp. of thread.* J. A. H. Murray, * Engl. Diet.* 

* By an Act of the next year (11 Hen. 7, s.v. 

c. 4, * An Acte for Wayghtes and Measures ') ^ Sic. Compare p. 56, where is * a nother.' 



42 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

hand ayenst youre lawes and peas riottously brake open the door of 
the same, and entred into it, entending to haue murdred and slayne 
youre said suppliantes had nat oone of thair neighbours beene which 
rescued thaym, natwithstanding that your said suppliant is hir 
gossipp,^ And yet the said Alice seing that she cowde nat haue hir 
intent of hir mishevous disposicion toke and threwe a great stone at 
the said Elizabeth and smote hir greuously vpon the bailly being 
great with ij children, wherthorough the same children were borne 
and died, as it euidently appered vpon oone of thaym when it was 
wonden in the crysum,® and she that won ^^ it wol recorde, and the 
said EUzabeth put in great ieopardie of hir lif. And ouer this where 
as the said Richard Smyth had send his doughter to Brymyngeham 
for ij barelles of Ale,^^ the said John Broke accompanyed with ij 
indisposed personnes mete your said suppliantes doughter in your 
high way and ayenst youre said lawes and peas riottously toke from 
hir the said ij barelles and a mare of the goodes and Gatailles of your 
said suppliantes which the said John and Alice kepe and occupie to 
thaire owne vse, besides other great iniuries that the said John and 
Alice haue doone to youre said suppliantes, Beseching mekely youre 
higbnesse benignely considering the premissis, To commaunde the 
same John Broke and Alice his wif to comme and appere before youre 
noble grace and the discrete lordes of your honourable counsaill to 
answere to these great iniuries. And this at the reuerence of Jhesu 
to whom youre said suppliantes shal specially pray ^^ for the pre- 
seruacion of youre most noble and Roial Estate. 

At foot, in another haiid. 

Emanarunt inde litere xxvij die Januarii anno Begni 

apud Westmonaste- 

Begis Henrici vij ix° ^^ ad comparendum coram domino 
rium orastino purifioaoionis >^ 

Rege vbicunque fuerit infra x dies post visum literarum 
et hoc sub pena cuiuslibet eorum Ix li.^^ 

B Either meaning sponsor or sponsor to galons and that every barell for Ale shall 

her child. See Murray, s.v. oonteyn xxxij galons.' This statute was 

' ' Woand in the chrism-oloth/ a white later than the present case, but probably 

robe put upon a child at baptism and used gave Parliamentary sanction to the gene- 

for its shroud in the event of its dying ral customary measures. On the varia- 

within a month after. See Murray, s.v. tion in the quantities of ale and beer 

*® Wound. contained in vessels under the same name 

" By 23 Hen. 8, c. 4 (1532) (' An Acte see J. £. T. Rogers, * Hist. Ag. and Prices ' 

that no Breuers of Bere or Ale shall make (1882), iv. 546-7. 

their barrels kylderkyns nor firkyns within " * To God ' struck through, 

them, and howmoche the same barrels &c, " 1494. 

shaU conteyne ') it was provided * that ^* February 3. 

every barreU for bere shall conteyne xxxvj '^ This order seems originaUy to have 



SMYTH V. BROKE 43 



The seid John Broke seith that the seid bill is insufficient and 
vncerten to be answerd vnto and the mater surmitted therein false 

* ^ * ^ [not] * determinable in this Court. Neuer- 
theles for the declaracion of the trouth in the premisses and for 
answere he seith that betwene the woUes of the Peak and the wolles 
of the growyng of the County of Warwyk is grete diu[ersity]^ 

* ^ * ^ knowen in euery county * and he seith that 
bothe wolle and yerne was embesselled from hym out of his house 
and that * ^ * ^ unto the seid Alice his wif that parte of 
the same * ^ * ^ and yerne ther was in the house of the 
said Richard Smyth and therupon the seid Alice in pecible manor 
comme vnto the house of the seid Richard and there founde parte 
of * ^ * ^ wolle and chalenged it and also herde that ther 
was parte of the yerne which was embeselled from the seid John 
Broke in the house of a wever in Orton afiforeseid and in likewise 
went theder and toke it as the propre goodes of her seid husbond 
which the seid Elizabeth vtterly denyed and seid that her seid 
husbond hadde bought the same wolle in the peke which was vntrue 
For it was and is openly knowen that it was of the growyng of the 
seid Countie of Warwyk and was the propre woU of the seid John 
Broke. And he seith that this was doone aboute the Fest of All 
Seyntes the viij^*' yere of your most noble reigne ^ and after that the 
seid Richard and Elizabeth his wif entendyng by sinistre and vntrue 
Suggestions to cause the seid John Broke and Alice his wif to speke 
no more in that mater vntruly surmised that the seid Alice shulde 
then distroye ij Children in the bely * of the seid Elizabeth which is 
feyned and vntrue for he seith that it was the weke before midsomer 
then next ensuyng ^ or the seid Elizabeth was delyuered howe be it 
the seid Richard and Elizabeth before this time haue by a feyned bill 

run as follows : ' Emanarant inde litere pp. 2, 18, 23). See further, Introd., pp. xvi, 

xxvij die Januarii anno Regni Begis Hen- Iv, supra. 

rici vij ix^ ad oomparendum coram domino ' MS. indecipherable, being much 

Bege vbicunque fuerit infra x dies post damaged by damp. 

visum literarum et hoc sub pena cuiusUbet ' Conjectural. 

eorum Ix li.' This is intelligible. The ' In the assessment of the value of 

same hand apparently underlined ' coram various sacks of wool, printed in the Bolls 

domino Bege vbicunque fuerit ' without of Parliament for 32 Hen. 6 (1454) and in 

striking the words through, and wrote J. E. T. Bogers's * Hist, of Ag. and Prices,* 

above Qiem, * apud Westmonasterium eras- iii. 704, Warwickshire wool is assessed as 

tino purifioacionis.' * Visum literarum * is worth 865. Bd. and Fetkk wool as worth 

also underlined, but nothing written above. 695. id, a sack. 

The form appears to have been that in use * November 1, 1492. 

in the Privy Seal Office. Cf. Select Cases in ^ An erasure of about two inches fol- 

the Court of Bequests (Selden Society. 1898, lows. * June 16-23, 1493. 



44 COURT OK THE STAR CHAMBER 

of peticion vntruly surmised that she shuld be delyuered within viij 
dayes next after that the seid Alice comme vnto the seid house of the 
seid Richard And where the seid Richard surmitteth that the seid 
John Broke shulde rioutously take from his doughter ij barelles of ale 
therto the seid John seith that the same day as is surmitted the same 
ij barelles to be taken the same John Broke was and yet is baylly ^ 
of Castelbromwich afiforeseid and that a lawe day " was there holden 
the same day and grete apparans of peple and the doughter of the 
seid Richard the same day comme that wey with ij barelles of ale 
, carying them to be solde which the seid John Broke forasmoche as 
I the peple beyng at the seid Court hadde grete necessitee therof toke it 
and aggreed to pay therfor as moche as the seid Richard or his wif 
wolde resonably desire® and after that at the speciall labour and 
desire of the seid Richard and his wif and ther Frendes all maters 
and causes betwene hym and the seid John Broke were ended by 
arbitours betwene them indifferently chosen So that it was awarded 
that the seid Richard shulde restore vnto the seid John Broke a 
Cheyne and a wegge of iron ^" which he hadde taken of the seid John 
Broke before and that eyther of them that doone shulde be quite 
ayenst other and that notwithstondyng the seid Richard of his wilfull 
and maliciouse mynde withoute grounde or cause resonable suied 
before this tyme a bill of Compleynt ayenst the seid John Broke 
before your highnes at Colyweston ^^ and therby put the same John 
to grete cost trouble and vexacion without grounde or cause resonable 
and nowe entendyng also to put the same John Broke to more trouble 
and vexacion to thentent that the same John shulde geve vnto hym a 
Somme of money to eschewe suche trouble and vexacion hath brought 
the same John before your highnes by auctorite of Pryve Seale 
without grounde or cause resonable. Without that that the seid 
Richard bought the seid woll in the peke, And without that that the 
seid Alice called the seid Richard thefife or his wif harlot or that the 

'' Bailiff ' seems to have been specially " In Domesday, Weston; in 1831 

used of officers in charge of a castle. See Ck)lyn's Weston ; now CoUey Weston. It 

Cowol, * Interp.' s.v. is in the N. of Northamptonshire, three 

" 'Otherwise called View of Frank- and a half miles S.W. of Stamford. 

Pledge or Cburt Leet.* Gowel, ' Interp.' Here Henry 7's mother had a palace, 

s.v. Cf . p. 230. ' * Coly Weston for the most part is of a new 

" * An average of forty entries of ale by building, by the Lady Margaret, mother to 

the barrel, principally London purchases, Henry the VII. The Lord Cromwelle had 

between 1405 and 1540 gives 3^. 4(2. These afore begunne a house ther.' J. Leland, 

are prices of the best quality in the year.' ' Itin.' i. fo. 31 ; J. Bridges, * Hist, of 

Rogers, * Hist. Ag. and Prices,' iv. 549. Northants ' (1791), ii. 433-5. There ap- 

'• In 1501 the price of three iron wedges pears to be a reference to a suit in the 

bought at Stamford was ninepence. Id. ib. ambulatory Court of Bequests. 
561 iii. 



SMYTH V. BROKE 45 

seid John Broke or the same Alice is gylty of any suche riot trespas 
or offence as is surmitted by the seid bill. All which maters the seid 
John Broke is redy to proue as this Court will award and praieth to 
be dismissed out of this Court with his resonable Costes and damages 
for his wrongful! vexacion in this behalf &c. 



CULFORD V. WOTTON.' 

A. To the king our soiierain lord 

c. 1494 Lamentably sbewith and greuosly complayneth vnto your highnesse 
your pouer treue liegeman John Culford of Brynkworth* in your 
Countie of Wiltes. That where as your said pouer Liegeman cam 
into the Courte of thabby of Malmesbury holden at Brynkeworth 
aforsaid the xij^^ day of Aprille in the xiij*'* yere of the Eeigne of your 
noble progenitour ^ king Edward the iiij^^ ^ and then & ther becam 
tenaunt to the. said Abbot '^ and Conuent of the same and toke by copie 
of the said Courte like as Thomas Culford his fader ded and helde 
before in his lif a Messuage & half a rode of lande with thappur- 
tenaunces called Feldmannys and ij Furlonges called Oxhey and 
Wodfurlonge with appurtenaunces for the which your said subgiet 
gave for his fyne to the said Abbot and his Steward iiij li. vj s. viij d.^ 
As in the said Copie thervpon made to your said liegeman and his wyf 
for terme of their lyves more playnly it doth apper Whiche Messuage 
& landes with their appurtenaunces they haue peasibly kepte and 
occupied euer sithen, according to their Coppie & as right requirith, 
Till now of late that oon Dane ^ John Wootton Monk and kychener ® 
of the said Abbey to whom the forsaid Messuage and landes with 
thappurtenaunces ben limited for his parte to haue & receyue the 
rentes of the same as is accustumed ^ of his great wilfulnesse and 
extorte power Seing that your pouer liiegeman hath doon & made 
grete byldinges and costes vpon & in the same Messuage and landes 
in diuers weyes and hath implayed his said landes to his moost 

' S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 99. an indication that a change was in pro- 

- Five and three quarter miles E.S.E. gress in the mode of reckoning money. 

of Malmesbnry. The manor was still held Many Ruch examples occur in the case of 

by the abbey at the Dissolution. Dugd. the Prior of Bath v. the Abbot of St. 

* Monast.' i. 264. Augustine's, Canterbury, pp. 34, 35. 

* An inaccurate use of n common form. ' See p. 139, n. 8. 

* 1478. ^ An important personage in a religious 

* The abbot was John Aylee or Aylie, house. He sat at Abingdon on the left of 
1462-79. See Introd., pp. cxxiii cxxiv. the prior at meals. For his position and 

* Probably reckoned originally as C^ duties see T. D. Fosbroke, ' British Mona- 
marks, or thirteen angels (see Idele v. chism ' (1843), p. 123. 

Abbot of St. Benettes Holme, p. 50, n. 5), ^ See Introd., p. cxxx. 



46 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

avauntage & profite more than it hath ben before by his grete 
labour of husbondry to his grete coste & charge, The said Dane 
John Wotton of his covetous disposicion and royall ^® power hath by 
force & armes sent diners his seruantes and haue entred into the 
said Messuage wher as your pouer subgied and his wif dwelled in & 
them haue Biottously put ovte of their said possession bringing with 
them Bowes arrows swerdes bokelers grete.Clubbes ^^ and other weapons 
and brake vp the dores vpon your said suppliaunt and his wif and 
ther wold haue slayne your said suppliaunt onlesse by godes grace he 
priuely eschaped from theim and also the said personnes when they 
wer in the said howse caste ovte al suche goodes as they myght fynd 
into the strete, and also gracious souerain lord toke the Ghilde ligging 

I in the Cradell and caste the said Childe into the fire so that it is in 
perill of death or elles is dede alredy in evill example to other in that 

' Con trey. Also gracious souerain lord the said Dane John Wotton 
and his said seruantes not content with their vnlawfuU demeanynges 
kepith and withholdith from your said suppliant ligging in the said 
Messuage xl lode of hey, xv lode of diuers Gomes and more, withoute 
any mater or cause rightfull and other diuers thinges and also 
manashith ** and dayly thretenith your pouer subgiet to murde ^' & 
sle so that he darnot comme home to his wyf and occupie his 
husbondry as your true subgiet aught to doo whiche is contrary to 
your lawes & peax right and conscience and to the vtter vndoyng of 
him and all his withoute your noble grace to theim beshewed in this 
partie for your pour subgiet is not of power to sewe the said John 
Watton for his remedy by your commune lawe.^* Please it therfor I / 
your highnesse of your blissid charite and pitee the premisses tenderly 
considerid to graunte your gracioux lettres of priue seal to be directed 
vnto the said Dane John Wotton charging him straitle by the same 
that he be and personally aper befor your grace and your noble 
counsell at your palace of Westminster at a certain day this terme *^ 
vndre a penaltie to answer vnto- the premisses bringing with him 
Geflferey Parker compartiner of the said Riotte to obeye & abyde 
suche direccion as shal be thought consonant by your said Counsell 
to reason And that your said suppliant and his wyf may haue and 

enioye their said possession, and to haue restytucion of their said 

*« See p. 37, n. 11. ** Indicating that the Star Chamber 

** See Walterkyn v. Letice, p. 167, n. 2. then kept the legal terms. Probably it 

*' Menaces. always did so, seeing they were kept by the 

'■ Sic. Privy Council in 1426. Sir N. H. Nicolas, 

^* Presumably on account of the ex- * Proceedings,' do., iii. 216. See Introd., 

pense. On this plea see Introd., pp. pp. Iviii, Ixiii, Ixviii. 

Ixxxi, Ixxxii. 



CULFORD V. WOTTON 47 

goodes with holden from theim by the said Dane John And Geflferey 
Parker this at the reuerence of god and our lady. And your said 
subgiet shal pray to god dayly for the preseruaciun of your moste 
noble & Boyall estate. 

In another hand. Emanarunt inde litere abbati ^^ dicti monasterii. 
Eetornabiles Octabis Purificacionis ^^ proxime 
sub pena c ii. 

Indorsed. John Culford contra John Wotton Malmesbury 

Die ultimo Februarij.*^ 

B. This is the Answere of dane John Wotton to the byll of 
John Culford. 

The saide dane John seith that the mater conteyned yn the saide 
byll is mater feyned & ymagyned of malis by the saide John Culford 
to the Intent to putt the saide dane John Wotton to vexacon and 
trouble and also the saide byll is vncerten & insufficient to putt hym 
to answere vnto wherof he prayeth allowans and for the declaracon of 
the trougth of the matyr conteyned yn the saide byll the saide dane 
John seith that as to any riott cummyng & entryng with fors & armys 
in to the saide mese brekyng vp of the doores castyng ovt of the 
goodys in to the strete and takyng of the Chylde lyying yn the Cradell 
and castyng in to the fyre manassyng and thretenyng and all other 
mysdemenyng surmytted ayenst hym yn the saide byll he is no wyse 
gylte and as to the Entre in to the saide mese the saide dane John 
seith that the saide John Culford helde the saide mese of his fadyr 
the abbot of Malmesbury * at wyll ^ by copye of court roll as of his 
maner of brynkwurth as in the rigth of his Chirche and that the 
custome of the saide maner is & ovt of tyme of mynde hath bene that 
all Copyeholders of the saide maner shall paye yerly rent for the 
pannage ^ of ther swyne goyng vppon the wast * grownde of the saide 
maner and the saide John Culford was often tymes required to paye 

** The abbot in 1494 was Thomas ' * Lyndwood defines it thus : Pannagiom 

Olveston (1479-1509). See Introd., p. cxxvi. est pastus pecorum in nemoribus et in 

*' February 9. syhis utpote de glandibas et aliis fruoti- 

*" Presumably the day fixed for the bus arborum sylvestrium quarum fruotus 

hearing. aliter non solent colligi.' Tit. de Decimis. 

* This refers to the original grantor, J. Ck)welf * Interp.* s.v. 
abbot Aylie. See A, p. 45, n. 5. * On the rise of the claim of the lords 

' In full, * at the will of the lord accord- of manors to property in the wastes see 

ing to the custom of the manor.' On the * Trans. B. Hist. Soc.,' N.S. vi. pp. 254- 

legal signification of this phrase see I. S. 257. These claims of the lonls were 

Leadam, 'Trans. R. Hist. Soc.' (1892), fiercely resisted in the sixteenth century. 

N.S. vi. pp. 209-220. See ibid. 



48 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

his pannage rent for his swyne goyng within the wast grounde of the 
saide maner and all weyes he refused to paye it and yet doyth and 
for that cause at the court holden at the saide maner the xxiiij^^ 
day of Octobre the ix*** yere of oure souerayn lord the kyng that 
nowis * ther wos founden by the homage ther a forfiture ^ of the saide 
mese by the saide John Culford and theruppon a commaundement 
geuyn by the steward to the bayly of the saide maner to sease the 
saide mese in to the saide abbott is handis by fors wherof the bayly 
of the saide maner seasid the saide mese & put ovt therof the saide 
John Culford as wos lawfull for hym to doo. All which matters he 
is redy to proue as this court wyll awarde & prayeth to be dysmyssed 
with his resonable costes & exspenses for his wrongfull vexacon yn 
that behalf. 



Dan John Wotton sworn vpon the bill of complaint and this his 
answer ^ deposith, that the customs by him alledged is treu and bi the 
time also alledged vsed in the said manor. And he saith that the 
complainant bi the space of xij or xiij yere hath occapied the within 
wreten wast somtime with xx^^, somtime with xl^** and mo swyne, for 
which euery tenaunt so occapyyng there hath ben vsed to pay for 
euery swyne there fedyng of half yere old ob. of a hole yere old and 
more j d. bi the yere, which euery of the said tenauntes haue treuly 
paid without condiccion, the said complaynant onlye excepte which 
hath ben yerlye of him required and he hath euer expresslye denyed 
payment sayyng thies woordes — I will occapye the said wast in 
despite of thabbottes and the Cofiners ^ and Kechiners beds wherfore 
bi the homage* there and bi an ordre of the law he forfeatyd his 

» 1493. * Indorsed on B. 

• Coke*8 language of a century later was ^ See p. 26, n. 27. 

true at this time. * But now copyholders ■ From * coffin,* in the sense of the 

stand upon a sure ground, now they weigh * moulded crust of a pie.' Cf. ShakRp. 

not their lords' displeasure ; they shake not * Tit. And.' v. ii. 189 : * Of the paste a coffen 

at every sudden blast of wind ; they eat I will reare.' J. A. H. Murray, * P^ngl. Diet.' 

drink and sleep securely ; onely having a s.v. This word * coffiner ' is not noticed 

special care of the main chance, viz. : to by Murray. It evidently means ' pastry 

perform carefully what duties and services cook.' 

soever their tenure doth exact and custom * * The word " homage,'' habitually used 

doth require ; then let lord frown, the copy- of the suitors of customary courts, rather 

holder cares not, knowing himself safe and suggests that there was a time when cus- 

not within any danger' (* Complete Copy- tomary courts had no existence, but only 

holder ' [ed. 1673], § ix.). Refusal to pay those who paid homage, the freeholders, 

rent was a withholding of services, for exercised the right of manorial tenants, 

which rent was a commutation, and worked According to the jurists, the essence of 

a forfeiture. See I. S. Leadam, *0n the a manor, viewed historically, consisted 

Security of Copyholders in the 16th and not in the customary tenants, but in the 

16th centuries,' * Engl. Hist. Rev.' viii. 684. freeholders.' I. S. Leadam in * Trnns. R. 



CULFORD V. WOTTON 



49 



tenure, aswell for the nownpayment of his deutie as for thexpresse 
denyyng of payment^ aforsaid so long continued, after which the 
said GeoflEray at thinstance of Mr.^ Cheyneye high steward to the said 
abbot bought the said hous and land and when the said GefiEray 
shold entre into the said hous, for that the said complainant willd not 
aduoyde the possession, as this deponent herde say,' the same Geffray 
tooke the stuff of the said complainant and laide it oute of the hous, 
how or in what fourme this deponent can not say as he saith for by 
his oth he was neuer at the hous in all his lif, nether he sent any 
person to the hous, but as oone of the monasterye geving his assent 
at thinstance of Sir John Cheyney ® that the said Geffray shold haue 
the said hous and land. Albe it this deponent saith that or any 
graunte was made bi the abbot and Govent to the said Geffray, this 
deponent sent to the said complaynaunt to wete whether he wold do 
his dewtie as other tenauntes dyd or not and if he wold, he shold 
notwithstanding the office fand ® of forfeating his tenure haue it agen 
afore any man, the said complaynaunt gave euer ansuer obstinatlye 
he wold not sew for it nether he wold any thing pay, but he wold kepe 
his hold in despite as is aforsaid of thabbot and all his officiers. This 
deponent denyeth by his oth almaner of Byott in his person or bi his 
commaundment supposd to be doone or bi any other mannys com- 
mawndment that euer he knew or herd of. 



Hist. Soc./ N.S. vi. 231, 232, where see 
further upon this point. 

' This was long settled law. In a case 
in the Year Book 42 Ed. 3, 25, a prior 
brought an action for trespass after evic- 
tion. The defendant pleaded that the land 
was his freehold. The jury found 'que 
le dit J. tient mesme le terre del Prior per 
copy de court rolle a volunte le Prior, pur ce 
que fut niefe terre, et pur ce que J. ne 
Yoet faire sea services de le terre, le Prior 
le seisist.' 

« I.e. Sir John C. See p. 18, n. 3. 

' Note here, as elsewhere, the accept- 
ance of hearsay evidence. 

■ This Sir John Cheyney was lord . of 
the manor of Wansborough or Wanborough 
in Wiltshire, which had been forfeited by 



attainder of Lord Lovel in 1487 (J. Aubrey, 
• WUtshire Collections ' [ed. 1862], 196). He 
also held land of the abbey of Malmesbury 
at Charleton, Wilts (Inq. p. m. Hen. 7, 
154). He must be distinguished from a 
contemporary Sir John Cheyney, who died 
July 14, 4 Hen. 7 (1489), leaving large 
estates in the Midlands. See also Prior of 
Bath V. Abbot of St. Augustine's, Canter- 
bury, C, p. 27, n. 14. 

* * Office doth signlfie .... also an 
Inquisition made to the King's use of any 
thing by vertue of his office who enquireth. 

■ And therefore we sometimes read of an 
office found, which is nothing else but such 
a thing found by Inquisition made ej, 

• officio.' J. Cowel, * Interp.' s.v. 



•^ 
^r 



50 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



IDELE V. SAINT BENNETTES HOLME, ABBOT 0F.» 

To the king oure soueraign lord & the lordes 
of his mooste honorable Counsell spirituel & 
temporell 

1495 Sheweth & grevously complayneth vnto your moste noble grace 
youre true & feithfull subget Thomas Idele, How that where as he 
vppon saint petres even last past ^ rode to the house of Saint Bennettes 
of hohne in Norflfolk to thentent to deliuer vnto the Abbot ^ of the 
same house your gracioux lettres vnder your priue Seel which your 
said Oratour had purchased before vppon certain grete Iniuries by the 
said Abbot of his grete myght & power to the wife of the said Thomas 
commytted & doone contrarie to al right reason & good conscience, 
lakking power to sue his remedie therin after the course of youre 
comen lawe, It is so gracioux lord, that at the deliueraunce of your 
said lettres to the said Abbot in the presence of v or ^ of 

j his brethren monkes of the same house he receiued it without reuerence 
by putting oflf his bonet or otheifwise and whan he had it, threw it from 
him into a wyndow in grete angre and or euer he opened it or red it, 

' he entreated your said Oratour to haue taken it home with him agayn, 
and oflfred him a Noble * so to haue doone ; Which to do your said 
Oratour vtterly refused and for the bringing thidre of your said lettres 
& for noon other cause, your said Oratour was right sore & ferefuUy 
manasshed & thretened ^ by one of his Monkes ^ to bete kill & sle to 
thentent to make other to be ware of bringing thidre eny priue Scales 
^hereaftre^ saying that the best knight in the Shire durst nat haue 
doone such a dede vnto them. And so youre said Oratour departed 
thens in grete fere & jeopardie of his life, beseching your grace to 
take such wey & direccion therin for the mysdemeanyng of the said 

' S.C J^. Hen. 7, No. 69. the last figare being afterwards erased and 

* St. Peter's Day is June 29. This oc- the viij redaoed by erasure to v. The 
oorrence took place on Jane 28, 1494, for blank for the alternative figures was then 
the indorsement shows that this Bill was left unfilled. 

filed in Trinity Term, 1495, in which year ' By an indenture dated 1465 nobles or 

Trinity Term began May 24 and ended rials were to be coined in gold of the value 

June 15. J. J. Bond, ' Handybook of Bules of ten shillings. The old nobles of the 

and Tables for verifying Dates ' (1866), p. 88. value of 6s. Sd. were then called angels. 

" Bobert Gubyle or Cubitt occurs in This coinage was continued upon Henry 7's 

1499. His predecessor, Thomas Pakefeld, accession in 1485. B. Ruding, ' Annals of 

had died in 1492, and his successor, Wil- the Coinage ' (1840), i. 283, 293. Never- 

Ham Forest, was elected in 1505. Dugdale, theless, in Eynesham, Abbot of, v. Hare- 

* Monasticon ' (1846), iii. 65. court. A, pp. 146, 153, the noble is reckoned 

* Blank of about an inch. It appears as 6#. Sd. 
that viij or iz had been originally written, *'* Interlined. 



IDELE V. ST. BENETTES HOLME, ABBOT OF 51 

Abbot & of his said Monke as by your highenesse shalbe thought con- 
sonaunt to reason & good conscience. At the reuerence of God & in 
\f ey of charitie. 

Indorsed. Termino Trinitatis anno x"'*. 
ij'^^ billa. 

Thomas Ydele contra Abbatem sancti benedicti de 
Hohne/ 

Ifi modem hand. Idele v. Abbot of St. Benett de Holme.** 



TAPTON v. COLSYLL.> 

A. To the kyng oure souerayne lorde and the lordes 
of hys moyst honorabuU Cowncell 

1495 Lamentably in the moyst humble vise sheweth to youre hyghnes 
youre dayly Oratryx Alice late the wyflfe of Wylliam Tapton late of 
Thorverton ^ yn your Counte of Deuynshyre that the sonday after 
corpus christi day the ix yere of youre moyst Eyoall reygne ^ one John 
Colsyll than beyng meyre of youre Cetye of Excestre * in the seyd 
Counte sent Rychard Ebbisworthy Thomas Hampton and one Clement 
than hys seruantes Eyotuos persons in maner of werre Arrayed wyth 
bowes arrowez byllez swerdes and daggares to Torverton A fore sayd 
and by Commaundement of the same Colsell than and there the sayd 
Rychard Thomas and Clement Eyotusly with force and armys entryd 
with oute ony Ryght or title in to the howse of youre sayd bedvoman * 
at A bake wyndowe in herr Chaumber and there here assautyd bete 

' This mitred Benedictine abbey was 548). The Act, which annexed the barony 

founded by Canute upon the relics of an of Hokne to the see, confirmed the King's 

existing house about a.d. 1020. Its yearly nomination of the abbot WiUiam Bugge, 

revenues at the Dissolution were, accord- Beppys, or Beppes to be bishop of Norwich, 

ing to Dugdale, £583 175. Old., according Sir £. Coke, who had seen the house, 

to Speed £677 9s, Sid. (Dugdale, iii. 66). By having been educated at the Norwich Free 

an Act of Parliament of 1535 (27 Hen. 8, , School, says of it : * The monastery (was) 

c. 45), the ancient barony and revenues of made of that strength as it seemed to be 

the see of Norwich were severed from it, potius castrum quam claustrum.' 4th Inst., 

' and the barony and revenues of the abbey . p. 46, note. Cf . the description of the walls 

of Holme substituted in lieu thereof, ' in of Eynesham Abbey, p. 142, infra, 

right of which barony the bishop of * No other papers of this suit have been 

Norwich now sits in the House of Lords found, 

as abbot of Holme, the barony of the > S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 17. 

bishoprick being in the King's hands and - Now Thoverton, six miles north of 

the monastery never dissolved, only trans- Exeter, 

ferred by the statute before the general ' June 22, 1494. 

dissolution. The bishop of the see is the * Mayor 1498-94. See further Tayllocr 

only abbot at this day in England * v. Att Well, A, p. 9, n. 18. 

(F. Blomefield, * Hist, of Norfolk ' [1806], iii. ^ Bedewoman, i.e. petitioner. See p. 114, 

n. 3. 



52 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

and sore wondyd in herre head and drew herre owte of the hall by the 
here of herre hede so that she was in dyspere of herre lyflfe and froo 
Thens so beyng wondeyd and bledyng Caryed herre forth to youre 
sayd Cetye of Excestre and there put herre in preson and fetheryd * 
herre on beyth herre legges wyth fettyres xxx li. weyght and more and 
be syd that causyd herre to be tyed with a Chejme and wold not suffre 
herre by the space of x wekkys next folowyng to haue Cloythys nore 
strawe to lye on but ley apon the bare bordys with the sayd fetthers 
' and Cheynnys and wold not suffur herre to haue Eny surgeon to 
dresse herre sayd wonde bot so youre sayd bedwoman leye there wyth 
Ryght gret peyne by the space of xxiiij wekkys and more and youre 
sayd oratryx so lyeng in preson The same John Colshyll leyd sus- 
pecyon of felony on herre And Cawsed here iij tymes To be led wyth 
the sayd fetturs and Cheyn A moyng felons to the barre by fore your 
Commyssionerz ' ther and at the iij"^® tyme youre sayd bedwoman was 
delyuerid by proclamacon ® and than the same Colsyll malysciously 
dyssposyd in tendyng the dystruccion and fynally the deth of youre 
sayd Oratryx Toke suertye of pesse there A yens youre oratryx Where 
vppon she vas Eemyttyd A gayne to preson where she leye and con- 
tenuyd vn to the Tyme that the sayd Colsyll was out of hys oflfys of 
maryalte and vj wekkys aftere on to the tyme that one John Atwyll • 
fore Almes and petye with othere worshypfull men had compassyon 
on herre and lent to youre sayd bedwoman money to sew a super- 
sedyas ^® at Westminster for herre where by she was delyuerid out of 
pryson. Also gracyus lorde When youre sayd pouere oratryx Was 
betten and Eyotuusly Caryed oute of herre sayd howsse to the sayd 
pryson The same Colsell Wrongfully entred in to all Thehouses^^ 
landys leyng within the sayd Towne of Thoruerton where of youre 
sayd bedwoman was possessyd & peysab(ly) ^^ had Contenuyd herre 
possessyon by the space of xv yere & more beyng of the yerly valuy 
of xij marke^^ A boue The Charges and the sayd Colsyll there 
Wrongfully And Extortyusly toke Certeyn goodes & Catell from youre 

* Fettered. writ is granted. For example, a man re- 
' I.e. of assize or gaol delivery. gularly is to have surety of peace against 

* Presumably a proclamation of a gene- him of whom he wiU swear ; he is afraid 
ral pardon ; but I have failed to discover and the justice required hereunto cannot 
any such at this date. deny him ; yet if the party be formerly 

* See Tayllour v. Att Well, A, p. 7, bound to the peace, either in Chancery or 
n. 5. elsewhere, this writ lies, to stay the justice 

>o * Supersedeas is a writ in divers oases from doing that which otherwise he ought 

and signifies a general command to stay or not to deny.' J. Gowel, ' Interpr.' s.v. 
forbear the doing of that which ought not " ' And ' omitted, 

to be done or in appearance of law were to " Parchment torn, 

be done, were it not for that whereon the *' 82. 



TAPTON V. COLSYLL 63 

sayd oratryx os ^* the parcell & valuye aperyth in A CeduU ^^ to thys 
byll Annexyd & oure all the forsayd Wronges in prysonment bettjmg ^* 
wondyng the sayd Colsyll hath Cawsyd your sayd bedwoman to spend 
by fanyd & sinistere Accons & by meyns in the lawe xl li. & more 
money to herre vttere vndoyng so that youre sayd bedwoman now ys 
of no powere ferthere to suye with oute youre good grace to herre be 
shewyd in thys behalf nowe Gratyus lorde hyt ys so that the sayd 
Colsell ys late dyssessyd ^® and youre sayd oratryx hayth syth the tyme 
of hys deyth ben with hys wyflfe to haue rescyte of herre landes and 
recompens of herre goodes & Catell the whech she denyeth to do where 
for that yt wold pies youre hyghnes of youre moyst habundant grace 
The premyssyes tenderly to Conseder to graunt your lettere of preuay 
seall to be dyrecte to the sayd Issabell ^^ late the wyfe of the sayd 
Colsyll *' & his execor trice *' that she may personally Apere A fore 
youre hyghnes And the lordys of youre moyst honorabuU Cowncell 
At A certeyn day & Apon A certeyn payn by youre hyghnez to herre 
to be lymite and there Abyde and Abay all suche dyreccionz and 
Jugementes as to herre shall be A iugeyd be youre hyghnes and the 
sayd lordes of youre moyst honorabuU Cowncell. And your poure 
oratryx shall euer pray to gode fore the preseruacyon of youre moyst 
Eyall Estayt &c. 

Indorsed. Termino michaelis Anno xj^'^ 

Tapton contra viduam Johannis Colshyll. 

In modem liand, Tapton v. Colsytt. 



B. Theys be the parselles folowyng that the sayd John Colsell 

Wrongfully with holdyth from Alyce Tapton. 

In primys vj keyne pryse iij li. Item x bullokes price 1 s. Item 
ij geldynges price xx s. Item vj hogges price x s.^ Item xxj gesez 
prys viij s. Item vj Capons ij Cockes xiiij hennez ^ prys viij d ^ xviij 
' W(edders) xvj d the wedder xl Eues prys the Ewe x d. Item xv 
lambes prys the lambe viij d. Item Whete in the berne prys xiij s 

"As. '" Interlined. 

" Schedule. >• Oct. 9, ; Nov. 28, 1495. 

'• He died July 21, 1496. Inq. p.m. * Above this, apparently in another hand 

Hen. 7, 1185. No land or tenements are and ink, are the words 'fatetur iiij<*porco8 

returned as having been held by him at quos comparabat Colshill defunctus de 

Thorverton. kirkham Item xiij vacas de eodem.' 

" ' Elizabeth ' in the Inquisition. See '^ Interlined, 

ib. Document B shows Elizabeth to be * Parchment torn, 

correct. 



54 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



•DlcitAJ- 
Slinb«t 
qnod gnnm 
fennm atque 
brasiom 
destniantur. 



iiij d. Item xx bussell of otyn malte prys viij s iiij d. Item in the 
feldes ix acres of Whete prys iij li. Item iiij acres of Rye prys xx s. 
Item xj acres of otes prys xliiij s. Item iiij brasen pottes prys xiij s 
iiij d. Item yj pannez prys xx s. Item vj brewyng vesselles prys xx^ s. 
Item vj small tubbys prys yj s. Item iiij barelles prys v s iiij d. 
Item xxiiij pewter vessell prys xs. Item iiij sackes xld. Item ij 
pockes ® prys xij d. Item ij Begez ^ prys xij. Item iij syvez prys xij d. 
Item iij Goferz prys iij s iiij d. Item iij sadelles x s. Item ij mattakes 
xxj d. Item j peyckes iiij d. Item ij Bvelles ^ viij d. Item ij hookes 
viij d. Item ij hachettes viij d. Item ij sawez xl d. Item ij hang- 
ynges for beddes prys xx s. Item ij matresses prys xij s. Item iiij 
payre of setes prys xiij s iiij d. Item iiij Couerlettes prys xx s. Item 
iij Candilstykes. Item other trasshez ^ xx s. 



MADELEY v. FITZHERBERT.' 



A. 



To the kyng cure souerane lord and to all the 
noble and discrete lordes of hys most honer- 
able Counsell. 

1496 Shewyth mekely vnto youre highnes noble and sadde discrecions 
youre humble & true liegeman & oratour John madeley of Quykkes- 
hull * in youre Countie of Stafford that where one John Fitzherbert ' 
of Norbury^ in the Countie of Derby Esquier the ix* day of the 
monyth of feueryere in the ix*** yere of youre moost noble reigne * 



* Marginal note, apparently in the same 
hand. 

^ Sic. The scribe had evidently begun 
to write Alice, but had struck it through. 

* Pokes, i.e. bags. 
^ Qu. rakes. 

* Qu. bule, the handle of a pan &c. 
North. J. 0. Halliwell, ' Arch. Diet.* s.v. 

" Perhaps not in the sense of ' trifles,' 
but with the original etymological mean- 
ing of broken objects. See W. W. Skeat, 
*Btym. Diet.' (1882), S.V. 

' S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 13. 

' Now Quixhall or Quixhill, a hamlet in 
the parish of Bowoester or Rooester, N.E. 
Staffordshire. Quixhall is about a mile 
S.W. of Norbury on the Staffordshire side 
of the Dove. 

' Eldest son of Balph Fitzherbert, of 
Norbury, Derbyshire, by Elizabeth, only 
daughter and heir of John Marshall, of 
Upton, Leicestershire. Balph Fitzherbert 
died March 2, 14S4. John Fitzherbert was 
presented by the Inclosure Commissioners 
of 1517 for having broken the Acts against 



inclosure by inclosing to pasture some 
thirteen acres of arable land at Upton, 
Leicestershire, of which manor he was lord, 
in 1489 (I. S. Leadam, Domesday of In- 
cisures [1897], i. 227). He married Bene- 
dicta, daughter of John Bradburn, of the 
Hoo, or Hoghe, Derbyshire, and had issue 
three daughters and one son Nicholas, who 
married in 1501 Dorothy, daughter of Sir 
Balph Longford, but died in the lifetime of 
his father, s.p. John Fitzherbert died 
July 24, 1531, when Norbury passed to his 
only surviving brother. Sir Anthony Fitz- 
herbert, Judge of the Common Pleas (Visi- 
tation of Staffordshire [1583], Historical 
Collections, Staffordshire [1883], in. ii. 
73 ; Sir B. Burke, * Landed Gentry ' [1900], 
p. 555). He has been supposed by some to 
have been the author of the ' Boke of Hus- 
bandrie ' (fee, but as to this claim see ' Diet. 
Nat. Biog.,* Fitzherbert, Sir Anthony. 

' Norbury was granted to William Fitz- 
herbert by the Prior of Tutbury in 1125. 
lb. 

■^ 1494. 



MADELEY r. FTTZHERBERT 



55 



come to Quykkyshull aforesaid wyth viij persons in hys company to 
youre besecher vnknowen and then and there brake vp the dores of 
youre said besecher and entred in to hys house and there toke oute 
and draue a wey vj kyen and an horse and then draue to Glaxton * 
and there ympouned ^ them by the space of v dais where thurgh the 
horse died* wyth oute any offence or trespace by youre said besecher 
to hym done & the kyne he kept youre said besecher compleynyd to 
my lord precedent ^ who desyred hym to make delyuere ^® and where 
also as the said John byfore that tyme toke frome your said besecher 
asmoche Corne and heye as amountyd to the summe of x marcs " 
& more wherevppon youre said besecher complejmyd a fore thys 
tyme to youre said lordshyppys and had jugement that the said 
John Fitzherbert schuld make delyuere of the said godes a yene *^ to 
youre said besecher as in thys same Court it doth appere and as yet 
no delyuere canne haue to the vtter vndoyng of youre said besecher 
wyth oute youre most benygne grace to hym here in be shewyd, please 
youre said highnes of youre most noble & habundaunt grace and youre 
noble & sadd discrecions the premisses tenderly to consider and the 



* This place does not appear on the 
new Ordnance map, but it was apparently 
adjacent to Quizhill. It is mentioned in a 
settlement by Sir John Blount in 1382 of 
' lands in Denston, Glaston, Wyshall and 
Waterfall,' co. Stafford (Staffordshire His- 
torical Collections, iv. ii. 77), and in the 
Inq. p.m. on Sir J. Blount in 1424, * Lands 
in Denston, Watershall and Glaston, co. 
Stafford' (ib. 78). In a fine of M.T. 18 
Ehz. (1676-76), the manor of Quyekesell, 
Qwyekeshill, or Qwyxhill, <&c., and ten acres 
of wood there and at Glaston, Prestwood, 
and Denston passed. These last two places 
are near Quixhill. Qu. whether in these 
documents the mistake has been made of 
reading Glaston for Elaston, a village near 
Quixhill. The letter appears to be G in 
the documents of this case, but might have 
been wrongly transcribed by the lawyer's 
clerk, or might possibly be intended for E. 

' Impounded. 

■ Where the cattle distrained were im- 
pounded in a pound overt it lay upon the 
owner to supply them with food (Coke 
upon Littleton [ed. F. Hargrave and C. 
Butler], 47 b). Where in a pound covert or 
close, as in some part of the distrainer's 
house, the onus lay on him (ib.). As to 
the practice of driving the cattle to a dis- 
tance, see Introd., pp. cxx, cxxi. 

* I.e. the Lord President of the Council 
of the Marches of Wales. This was 
William Smyth, bishop of Coventry and 
Liohiield in 1492. * Coventry and Lichfield 



were never two different bishoprics, but 
two different seats of the safne see, which 
had sometimes a third at Chester ' (G. Bur- 
net, ' Hist, of the Beformation ' [ed. N. 
Pocock, 1866], i. 429, n.). The lord presi- 
dent is in this case oaJled the bishop of 
Chester, a common alternative designation 
of the bishops of Coventry and Lichfield. 
See Henry 7's letter to the University of 
Oxford recommending Smyth as Chan- 
cellor (B. Churton, * Life of Bishop Smyth ' 
[1800], I p. 143). His London palace, out- 
side Temple Bar, was called Chester Place 
(ib., p. 64). 

'» By 34-36 Hen. 8, c. 26 (* An Acte 
for certaine Ordinaunces in the Einges 
Majesties Domynion and Principalitie of 
W^ales'), § 3, it is provided *That there 
shalbe and remaine a President and Coun- 
saill in the saide Dominion and Princi- 
palitie of Wales and the Marches of the same 
. . . whiche President and Counsaill shall 
have power and auctorytie to here and 
determyne by theyre wisdoomes and dis- 
creacions such causes and matiers as be or 
hereafter shalbe assigned to them by the 
Kinges Maieste as heretofore hath been 
accustomed and used.' From this it 
appears that, as Coke puts it, there was a 
* court of equity before the president and 
councell there ' (4 Inst. 242). Its jurisdic- 
tion was evidently modelled on that of the 
Council of England. 

" 67. 135. id. 

'- Again. 



56 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

grete wrong & jniury that he dayly doth to youre said besecher and 
no remedye can haue a yenst hym for the same of youre gracious & 
blessyd disposion^^ by the aduice of your said discrete lordes to 
graunte your gracious lettres of priue Seale to be dyrectyd vnto the 
said John Fitzherbert straitly chargyng & commaundyng hym by the 
same vpon his liegaunce to appere a fore youre said grace and the 
said noble lordes of your Counsell to Aunswere to the premisses and 
to soch other maters as at hys comyng schalbe allegyd a yenst hym 
and thys fore the loue of god and jn the wey of charite. 

Indorsed. Madeley contra Fitzherbert. 
'* Termino pasche anno xj ^'^ 
Madeley contra Fitzharbard. 



B. This is thanswere of John Fitzherbert Esquier 
to the bill of Complaynt of John Madeley. 

The same John saith that the said bill is insufficient & vncerten 
to be answerd vnto and the mater conteyned theryn is mater deter- 
minable at the comen lawe & not in thys court wherof he prayth 
allowans.^^ And ouer that he saith that the said John madeley by fore 
this tyme hath caused hym to appere before my lord president & the 
kynges Councell by virtue of a nother priuy seale where the said John 
madeley hath made the same compleynt agaynst hym yn euery point 
as ho maketh now & nother more nor lesse wherunto he hath answerd 
the which mater as yctt hangyth ther not discussed. All which 
maters the said John Fitzherbert is redy to prove as your gracious 
lordeship shall thynk resonable & prayth to be dismissed with his 
resonable costes & charges for his wrongfuU vexaicon & trouble in this 
behalf. 

Indorsed. Termino p«sche Anno xj® ^^ 

Responsio Johannis Fitzherbert contra billam Johannis 
Madeley. 

» Sic. the Council (Bot. Pari. iv. 156 a). This 

'* Across. concession was to continue till the then 

'^ Wednesday, April 20-Monda)r, May next parliament, but the constant appear- 

16, 1496. J. J. Bond, Handybook (4th ed. ance of the plea in these documents sug- 

1889), p. 174. gests that it was regarded as a standing 

*^ In 1421 Henry 4 conceded a petition order liable to be overruled. Gf. Bot. 

of the Commons that the exception that Pari. v. 407 b (1427) and Stat. 31 Hen. 6, 

sufficient remedy could be had at the com- c. 2 (1458). 

mon law should discharge a suit before 



MADELEY r. FITZHERBERT 57 

0. This is thanswer of John Fitzherbert Esquier 
to the bill of complaynt of John madeley.* 

The same John saith that the said bill is insuflBcient & vncerten 
to be answerd vnto and the mater conteyned in the same is mater 
determinable at the comen lawe & not in this court Wherof he 
prayth allowans And ouer that he saith that the said John madeley 
byfore this tyme hath cavsed hym to appere byfore my lord president 
and the kynges councell by virtue of a nother privy seale where the 
said John madeley hath made the same complaynt agaynst hym 
yn euery point as he hath made now & nother more nor lesse Wher- 
unto he hath answerd, the which mater as yett hangyth there 
not discussed, But for declaracion of the trouth he saith one Eater3me 
hanley was seased in her demeane as of fee among other landes & 
tenementes of the said house in QuiksuU & so seased of the same by 
name of all her landes & tenementes in QuyksuU & prestwode^ by 
a dede redy to be shewyd enfeoffed one Eauff Fitzherbert^ Fader to 
the said John whos heyre he is' to haue to hym & to his heyres 
en fee by force wherof he was therof seased accordyng & died, after 
whos deth the said John Fitzherbert as son & heyre to the same 
BaufiF entred and was seased in his demeane as of fee and after 
the same John Fitzherbert the said day & yere at the tyme of 
the trespasse supposed came to Quyksull aforesaid with iij of his 
dayly seruantes as he most comenly vseth to walke & then & there 
found a hors & yj bestez damage fesaunt in his owne Frehold by 
force wherof the said John toke the said hors & bestes aforeseid 
& theym lawfully empownded within the same countie^ by the space 
of one day & one nyght and after that by request & desire of my lorde 
of lincoln* then beyng bishopp of Chester they were delyuerd to 
the said John madeley sauff & sownd. And as to the takyng of the 
said comes he saith the said Eateryne hanley was seased of the said 
landes and tenementes in Quiksull aforeseid wheruppon the said 
cornes were groyng in her demeane as of fee & so seased by the 

' A farther answer had evidently been * William Smyth, translated to Lincoln 

ordered with pleas to the substance of the January 31, 1496. It is to be noted that 

plaint, the former answer (B) being in- he is not styled *lord president,' which 

sufficient. suggests that his interposition was in his 

' A hamlet about a mile N.N.W. of capacity of a justice of the peace for 

Quyksull, in Staffordshire. Stafifordshire, an office to which it was the 

*'* Interlined. practice to nominate bishops. He fre- 

* This seems to indicate that Glaxston quently resided at the manor of Pipe, 

was not in Staffordshire, for the defendant Staffordshire, about fourteen miles south of 

omits to mention the place of the pound. Quizhill (B. Churton, * Life of Bp. Smyth ' 

See Introd., p. cxx. [1880], p. 61). See also p. 55, n. 9, supra. 



58 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



dede aforsaid therof enfeoffed the said Bauff Fitzherbert to haue & 
to hold the said landes and tenementes to the said Bauff & to 
his heyres by force wherof he was seased accordyng & so seased died 
by force wherof the said John as son & heyr to the said Bauff entred 
& so was therof seased till by the said John madeley disseised and 
the said John madeley so beyng seased by disseyson sett* the said 
landes & after the said John Fitzherbert entred agayne into the same 
landes & found the said cornes groyng vppon the same ground <& 
reped part of them and then thabbott of Crokkesdon' & sir Nicholas 
mountgomery^ knyght send' to the said John Fitzherbert that the 
said cornes myght be inned^® vppon the said ground by the said 
abbott and yf the said John madeley byfore the fest of seint micholl 
next after ^^ showyd not sufficient title to the said landes that then 
the said John Fitzherbert schuld have the said cornes as his own, and 
after at a metyng & communicacion at Boucester byfore the seid 
fest the said John madeley cowde not shewe sufficient mater nor title 
to the said landes wherfore after the said fest the said John Fitz- 



* Let. See Halliwell, ' Arohaio Diet.' 8.t. 

' It does not appear why the abbot of 
Crokkesdon and Sir Nicholas Mountgomery 
intervened unless it was a neighbourly 
endeavour to oompose differences. The 
abbot was subsequently appointed one of 
the throe commissioners to take the depo- 
sitions. Crokkesdon, Crokesdcn, or Crox- 
den was a Cistercian abbey about three 
miles west of Bocester in Staffordshire. 
Its abbot at this time was presumably John 
dc Ghekewalton (W. Dugdale, * Monast.' v. 
660). 

^ Born 1459, son of Nicholas Mont- 
gomery, who died in his father's lifetime, 
by Joan, daughter of Sir Nicholas Long- 
ford, and grandson of Sir Nicholas Mont- 
gomery of Leigh or Lcghe, Staffordshire, 
and Cubley, Derbyshire (S. Glover, *Hist. 
of Derbyshire ' [1829], ii. 335). Sir Nicholas 
the grandfather was high sheriff of 
Staffordshire in 3 Hen. 6 (1424-5) and 
22 Hen. 6 (1443-4). (S. Shaw, * Hist, of 
Staffordshire ' [1798], i. xxxv., xxxvi.) 
Leigh is about nine miles west, and Cubley 
about five miles south-east of Quixhill. 
Cubley was the principal seat of the family 
(Glover, ib.). The family of Montgomery 
were Torkist in politics. On December 
10, 1483, after Buckingham's abortive in- 
surrection, Nicholas Montgomery, probably 
the one here mentioned, was nominated 
by Biohard 3 a commissioner to inquire 
into accompUoes of the insurgents in 
Staffordshire (Pat. Bolls 1 B. iii. pt. ii., m. 
29 u, p. 393). He was a commissioner of 



subsidy for the county in the same year 
(ib. p. 396). On May 1, 1484, he was made 
a commissioner of array for the county 
to raise troops against the anticipated 
invasion of Henry Tudor, Earl of Bich- 
mond, afterwards Henry 7 (ib., m. 19 d, 
p. 401), and again on December 8, 1484 (ib. 
m. 20 d, p. 491). But his name does not 
appear as having fought at Bosworth, and 
it is probable that he deserted the cause of 
Bichard 3, for in little more than a fort- 
night after the battle he was nominated by 
the new king sheriff of the counties of 
Nottingham and Derby (Sept. 12, 1485, 
W. Campbell, 'Materials,' i. 548), receiv- 
ing a reward of 501. at Michaelmas, 1486 
(ib. ii. 83). On November 29, 1489, he 
was, together with Prince Arthur and a 
number of others, dubbed K.B. (W. C. Met- 
calfe, ' Book of Knights,' p. 21). He married 
Joan, daughter of John Haddon, Esq. 
The date of his death does not appear to 
be known, though these papers show that 
it must have been after Easter, 1496. 
He left a son. Sir John Montgomery, who 
died in 1513, leaving three daughters, co- 
heiresses. Of these Helen, or Ellen, married 
Sir John Vernon, and earned both Leigh 
and Cubley into that family (Glover, I.e. ; 
J. Pilkington, * View of Derbyshire ' [1789], 
ii. 248 ; S. Erdeswick, ' Survey of Stafford- 
shire ' [ed. T. Harwood, 1844], p. 255). 

• Sent. 

>® Gathered in (J. A. H. Murray, ' Eng. 
Diet.' 8.V. 

" Sept. 29, 1495. 



MADELEY r. FITZHERBERT 59 

herbert toke part of the same cornes as lawfull was for hym to doo 
& accordyng to the agrement byfore had, the which cornes exceded 
not the value of xlyj s.^^ viij d.^* & as to the heye he saith it was then 
gresse groyng within the said landes & tenementes of the which he 
was seased as is afore said & that he cutt downe the said gresse 
& made it heye & caried it to a mease within the said landes & 
tenementes and after the said John madeley toke the said heye to his 
owne proper vse. Without that that the said cornes & haye was to 
the value of x markes as he hath supposed and without that that he . 
came to QuiksuU aforeseid with moo personz than iij as he hath 
aforsaid and without that that ther is ony such jugement yn this 
present court apperyng of record in the maner & forme as he hath 
allegged and without that that the hors aforesaid died in his defaut 
as he hath allegged. All which maters the said John Fitzherbert is 
redy to prove as your gracious lordeshipp shall thynk resonable and 
prayth to be dismissed with his resonable costs and charges for his 
wrongfull vexacion & trouble in this behalf. 

Indorsed. Termino pasche Anno ij° ^^ 

Nouum responsum per Johannem Fitzherbert 

D. This is the replicacion of John Madeley 
to the answer of John Fitzherbert. 

The seid John Madeley seith that his seid bill is sufficient and 
certen to be answerd vnto and more over he seith that on Watere 
Verney ^ was seased of the landes and tenementes now in variance 
amonge other landes and tenementes in his demeyne as of fee and 
died of them seased aftur whose deth all the seid landes and tene- 
mentes descended to one Elyzabeth hethcote ^ as to doughtere and 
heyre to the same water whose estate in the seid landes and tenementes 
the seid John Madeley nowe hath and his fadere by fore hym had and 
peseable occupied the same by the space nye of Ixxx yeris.^ Without 
that that the seid Kateryn euer had any thyng in the seid landes and 

'**'* Interlined. fourteenth century (temp. Rich. 2). Erdes- 

" See A, p. 66, n. 15, supra. wick, pp. 610-13. BramshaU is about 

' No person of this name appears in seven miles south of QuixhiU, and Mar- 

the pedigreed" of the Verneys of Bucking- chington about five miles S.E. of Brams- 

hamshire and Worcestershire. A famUy hall. 

of the name was settled at Bromshall, or * A family of this name held property in 

Bromeshall, now BramshaU, Staffordshire, Chesterfield in the time of Edward 4, 

from the end of the twelfth century (temp. and long after. See Glover, ii. 298. 

Kioh. 1) to the early part of the fourteenth * This places the death of or sale by 

oentury (temp. Ed. 2), and at Marchinton, Elizabeth Hethcote in 1416. 
or Marchington. towards the close of the 



60 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

tenementes and Without that that any complajmt is hangyng by fore 
my lord precedent and the kynges Councell of the seid mater and 
Without that that the seid John Madeley disseissed the seid Eauff 
Fitzherbert of the seid landes and tenementes and Withoute that that 
the seid horse was euere * delyuerid agayn to the seid John Madeley 
and more ouer he seith that the seid abbott of Grokosdene and sir 
Nicholas mountgomery seyng the ryotwouse and wylf uU dispocyon ^ of 
the seid John Fitzherbert entreted hym that the seid Cornes myght 
be jnned vppon the seid ground and there to a byde till ferther title 
of the right of the seid landes myght be more perfitely knowen be 
twene them and by fore the dey lemitte by the seid abbott and mount- 
gomery and by fore any communicacion had bytwene them the seid 
John Fitzherbert came to the howse of the seid John madeley and hit 
dyd breke and caryed a wey the seid Comes in to derby shyre. 
Without that that any agrement ware had that the seid John Fitz- 
herbert shuld doo the same and also he seith that the seid John 
Fitzherbert dyd sell the seid hey to Alexander Cotis ^ and Richard 
sclater whech had and Caried a wey the seid hey Withoute that that 
the seid John madeley had the same as by his seid answere he haith 
supposed and forasmech as bifore this tyme the seid camplainte and 
title hath be made and shewyd by fore youur gracyous lordesshippe ^ 
and the kynges moste honorable Councell here in this place and the 
same answere then made that nowe is made in efifecte which title 
and answer with all ther circumstances were duly examyned by 
maister Tremele^ and maister vavisere® and^° proves brought*'^ 
byfore them vppon the same Whech made report here in this Courte 
of the trewth that was proved aswell by euydence as by othere suflfu- 
cyente proves for the title of the same John madeley Wheruppon 
iugemente was here geven that the seid John Fitzherbert shuld noo 
forther ^^ medyll ^" in the seid landes and tenementes and also make 
amendes to the seid John madeley for the wronges that he had done 
vnto hym and theruppon an Jniunccion of xl li. was geven vnto the seid 
John Fitzherbert which here apperith pleynly by mater of record 
which he hath broken of his owen knowlege wherfore the said John 
madeley preyeth that the seid John Fitzherbert may be amitted ^^ to 

* Interlined in substitution for * euure,' • See Goryng t. Earl of Northumber- 
struck through. * Sic. land, p. 99, n. 8. 

• A family of this name was settled at • Sir John Vavasour, Justice of the 
Cotes, in Staffordshire, about twenty miles Conmion Pleas, Aug. 14, 1490, d. 1506. 
W. of Quixhill. Erdeswick, pp. 121, 122. • Diet. Nat. Biog.' 

^ This, fts also the defendant's answer *"'** Interlined, 

(p. 56, supra), is presumably addressed to " This word, according to J. A. H. 

the Chancellor, Cardinal Morton. Murray, ' £ng. Diet.,' is the earhest form of 



MADELEY V. FITZHERBERT 61 

Warde for disobeyinge of the iugement here geven byfore youre seid 
lordesshipp and that he may be Compelled to fynd sufiBcient suerte to 
suflfure your seid pore oratur to enioye his seid landes and tenementes 
accordyng to the rule ordinance and jugement here geven byfore youre 
seid lordesshippe in this same Gourte bifore this tyme. 

B. This is the reiondre of John Fitzherbert 
to the replicacion of John Madeley. 

The same John Fitzherbert seyth that the seid replicacion is 
jnsufficient and vncerteyn to be vnswerd vnto and Furthermore he 
seyth that hys seid vnswere is good and true in euery poynte as in 
hys seid answere he hath alleggyd Wythoute that, That the fadure of 
the seid John madeley had euer ought in the seid londes and tene- 
mentes but of the leesse of the seid kateryne hanley for terme of ly ve 
of the seid katerine by a dede jndentyd wher oflf the on parte enseallyd 
with the seall of the fader of the seid John madeley remeyneth in the 
possession of the seid John Fitzherbert redy to be showed and Wyth 
oute that That the seid John madeley hath the Estaite and Right of 
the seid Elizabeth heythecotes in the maner and forme as he hath 
supposed. All the whych materz the seid John Fitzherbert is redy 
to prove as this courte wyll a warde and prais to be dismyssed of this 
courte wyth hys resonable costes and chargez for hys wrongefull 
vexacionz and Troublez in this behalfe, and also prays that the seid 
John madeley mey fynde sufiBcient suertye to content and pey the 
costes and chargez of the seid John Fitzherbert, The whych to hjon 
by yowre gracious lordeshypez shall be thought resonable to be 
awarded for hys wrongefull vexacionz and troublez in that behalfe. 

Indorsed. Madlby. 

p. This is thanswer of John Fitzherbert to the bill of John 

madeley Wherby it is surmittyd that the said John Fitz- 
herbert schold haue forfeited xl li. by reason of an 
Jniunccion gyuen by your grace in this court and cc li. 
by reson of a preuy seale to hym directed for procedyng in 
a certen assise. 

The seid John Fitzherbert seith as to the said Jniunccion of xl li. 
that he by the lawe of the land ought not to forfait that penalte nor 

admitf bat qu. whether here it does not tinct. The word occurs in the sense of 
represent the Latin amittere, and mean * admitted ' in Whyte ▼. Glonoestre, Mayor 
' sent away.* The writing is perfectly dis- <fec. of, A, p. 226. 



62 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



yett to be condempned in the same But for the pleyne declaracion 
of the trouth the said John Fitzherbert saith that where he was 
Jnioyned that he schuld not medle with the possession of the said 
John madeley of such landes as were yn debate bytwene them byfore 
your gracious lordeshipp vnto the tyne ^ he shewyd to the Councell * 
more sufficiently for his title Therunto he saith that it playnly 
appereth by the same jniunccion that it was made & gyuen only for 
the interest of the said John madeley by cavse of his possession & for 
no cavse ellys which John madeley sith the tyme of the jniunccion by 
reason of a communicacion hadd bytwene hym & the said John Fitz- 
herbert Fully agreed & assented that if the said John Fitzherbert 
cowde fynde such evidences as wold proue his title to the said landes 
& tenementes and the said euidences shewyd or cavsed to be shewyd to 
master litton ^ vndertresorer of Englond that then the said John 



* Sic. ' See Introd., p. xxiv. 

■ Sir Robert Litton, or Lytton, of Litton, 
Derbyshire, a hamlet a mile S.E. of Tides- 
well. A Sir Robert Litton, knight, sat in 
the parliament of 1404 for the county of 
Essex ('Members of Parliament' [1878], 
i. 267). A certain Thomas Litton, ' the 
King's servant,' was nominated by Ed- 
ward 4 on June 22, 1471, keeper of the 
gaol within the castle of York * for his good 
service beyond the seas and in England ' — 
that is, for assisting the return of Edward 4 
or serving in the campaign of Barnet and 
Tewkesbury (Cal. of Pat. Rolls, Ed. 4, 
p. 260). Robert Lytton was commissioned 
on June 23, 1475, as one of the officers in 
command of a division of 2,000 archers 
who embarked from Weymouth to Brittany 
in co-operation with Edward 4's invasion 
of France by way of Calais (ib. p. 662 ; Sir 
J. Ramsay, ' Lancaster and Tork,' ii. 407). 
He was a member of a commission of three 
who were appointed about 1486 to borrow 
money from private persons in Middlesex 
(W. Campbell, ' Materials,' ii. 107 ; cf. W. 
Busch, ' Konig Heinrich 7 ' [Stuttgart, 
1892], p. 297). On May 26, 1487, we find 
him already sub-treasurer. Lord Dynham 
being treasurer of England (Campbell, I.e.). 
He was a commissioner of array for Middle- 
sex to raise archers for the relief of Brit- 
tany in 1488 (December 23) (ib. p. 386). 
For his services he, with two London 
citizens, obtained licence * to export from 
London, Southampton, and Plymouth, by 
the Straits of Marrak, to foreign parts 170 
sacks of wool ' (February 7, 1489), a profit- 
able privilege, enabling him to tap the 
Italian market (ib. p. 404). He also re- 
ceived a gift of cloth and fur (ib. p. 600). 
References to him occur in the Plumpton 
Correspondence (Camd. Soc. 1839). He was 



executor to the will, dated July 24, 1492, of 
Sir James Blount (Nicolas, *Test. Vet.' 
p. 415). In 1493 he bought the manor of 
Knebworth, Herts (J. E. Cussans, ' Hist, 
of Hertfordshire' [1877], Broadwater Hun- 
dred, p. 112). He was dubbed EJ3. on 
' the creation of Prince Henry Duke of York, 
October 31, 1494 (W. C. Metcalfe, ' Book of 
Knights,' p. 24). He was a commissioner 
for raising the aid granted to Henry 7 in 
1503 in the county of Middlesex (Rot. 
Pari. vi. 540 b). He was also Remem- 
brancer of the Exchequer, Keeper of the 
Great Wardrobe, Treasurer at War, and 
justice of the peace for Herts and Middle- 
sex (MS. R. 0., Exch. K. R. Mem. RoU, 21 
Hen. 7, inter brevia, iii. dors.). His chief, 
Lord Dynham, nominated him executor of 
his will dated January 7, 1606 (Nicolas, p. 
496). Cussans (I.e.) is, therefore, probably 
wrong in dating his death in 1504. His 
will was proved in 1606, he being described 
as of * Freers Prechours, St. Benet Powlys 
Warfif, London ; Stan well, Middlesex ; 
Knybworth, Herts; Bucks' (J. C. Smith, 
'Index of Wills,' ii. 349). According to 
Cussans he was twice married. His first 
wife, Elizabeth, was daughter and co- 
heir of John Andrews, of Bogleham, Suf- 
folk, and widow of Thomas Wyndesore, 
Esq. (d. 1485), father by her of Sir 
Andrew Wyndesore. first Lord Windsor 
(Burke's • Peerage '). Through her Litton 
acquired the manor of Stanwell, Middlesex 
(•Inq. post Mortem Hen. 7,' p. 16), the 
manor of Peper Harowe, Surrey (ib. p. 497), 
and the manor of Malshanger, Hants (ib. 
p. 964). His second wife is said by Cus- 
sans to have been Agnes, only daughter and 
heir of Thomas Rede, citizen of London, 
by whom he left two sons, William and 
Thomas, the elder of whom succeeded to 



MADELEY V. FITZIiERBERT 63 

Fitzherbert ehuld doo theryn as his title & the lawe required wher- 
uppon the said John Fitzherbert through such serche as he therfore 
made fownd diuers euidences which clerely shall proue his title both 
in lawe & consciens which euidences so fownd he sent by one Thomas 
Babyngton * to the said master vndertresorer accordyng to the said 
agrement nott knavyng ' as yett to the said John Fitzherbert oderwyse 
but that the said master vnder ^ Tresorer was ^ att that tyme ^ hym 
self one of the Kynges Councell.^ And ouer that he saith that long 
tyme sith the said jniunccion gyuen to the said John Fitzherbert the 
said John madeley hath sued the said John Fitzherbert by fore the 
kynges Councell for thia same mater wherby he hath wayued * yn 
maner his sute in this court and so the jniunccion is vtterly dissolued 
by the same. Without that that euer the said John Fitzherbert sith 
the said jniunccion dispossessed the said John madeley And as to the 
said cc li. conteyned in the said priuy scale the said John Fitzherbert 
saith that he by the lawe of Englond yn no weyse ought to forfeit the 
same som of cc li. nor no parcell therof In so moche as it is ordeined 
by auctorite of diuers parlamentes that none of the kynges liege 
people schuld be putt to answer for ony such cause Wuthout he were 
brought yn by due Originall accordyng to the lawe of the land and 
that all other such processe & paynes shuld be taken for void & holden 
for errour ^ Wherof he prayth allowans according to the lawes 

Knebworth. The family became extinct in On May 1, 1484, he was a commissioner of 

the reign of Queen Anne (J. E. Cussans, array for Derbyshire to muster troops to 

1.8.0.). But a general pardon for any resist the apprehended invasion of Henry 

ofiFenoes or omissions committed by Sir Earl of Bichmond (ib. p. 400) ; and again, 

Bobert Litton in the numerous offices held on December 8, 1484 (ib. p. 490). But he 

by him was granted on April 29, 21 Hen. 7 seems to have become reconciled to the 

(1506) to his widow Elizabeth and his son new dynasty, for in 13 Henry 7 (1498) he 

and neir William, being his executors, was nominated sheriff of Derbyshire and 

which shows the accepted biography of him Notts (Sir B. Burke, ' Landed Gentry * 

to be incorrect (see MS. B. C, Exch. [1900]). He married (1) Margery , by 

K. B. Mem. Boll, 21 Hen. 7, inter brevia, iii. whom he had no issue ; (2) Edith, daughter 

dors.). That he should have been selected of Balph Fitzherbert, of Norbury, and sister 

by the two htigants as arbitrator in their to the defendant in this case, by whom he 

dispute is probable evidence that they had nine sons and six daughters (ib.). His 

were acquainted with him as a neighbour. will was proved in 1519 (J. C. G. Smith, 

Litton is about twenty-five miles N.E. of Index, i. 29). 
Quixhill. * Interlined. 

* Of Dethick, co. Derby, and Kingston, •*• Interlined. 

Notts, eldest son of Sir John Babyngton, ^ The construction and sense are some- 

sheriff of Derbyshire and Notts temp. what enigmatical. The meaning, appa- 

Edward 4 and Bichard 3. Thomas Babyng- rently, is that Fitzherbert was under the 

ton was a zealous Yorkist, being appointed impression at the time that Litton was a 

by Bichard 8, after the suppression of member of the Privy Council. In the list 

Buckingham's rebellion, a commissioner to of the Privy Council formed by Pulydore 

inquire as to disafifected persons in Derby- Vergil (Gandavi, 1557, pp. 1437-8) his name 

shire and Notts (December 10, 1483) (Pat. is not included, though that of his chief. 

Bolls B. 3, p. 393). He was also a com- Dynham, is. 

miBsioner of subsidy for Derbyshire in the ** See In trod., p. Izxix, p. 20, n. 6 ; also 

same year (August 1, 1483) (ib. p. 395). J, infra, p. 67. 



64 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



therof made & purveid and yf the said John Fitzherbert be compelled 
by this court further to answer he saith that it appereth playnly by 
the Wordes of the said privy seale that the said payne of cc li. is only 
for the apperans of the said John Fitzherbert byfore the lordes of the 
kynges most honorable Councell & for no cavse ellys Which Com- 
maundement he hath Well & playnly kept Without that that euer the 
said John Fitzherbert refused or set at nought the said privy seale 
but it humbly receyued accordyng to his duite in that behalf and 
Without that the said John Fitzherbert after that the said privy 
seale was delyuered vnto hym proceded in the said assise yn ony 
other wyse than by the said John madeley for whose cause only * the 
said priuy seale was directed vnto the said John Fitzherbert was 
fully assentyd & agreed. All Which maters the said John Fitzherbert 
is redy to prove as your gracious lordeshipp schall award & prayth to 
be dismissed out of this court with his resonable costes and damages 
for his wrongfull vexacion in this behalf. 

Indorsed J Madley contra Fitzharbert. 



a. 

And overe hys furste ^ answere the seid John Fitzherbert seyth 
that yowre gracious lordeshype gaff licence to the seid partiez to haue 
a commynycacion of the materz dependyng in variance betwene 
theym by force wher of the seid parties compromittyd theym selff and 
were agred to abyde the Kule ordinaunce and jugement of sir Kobert 
litton vnderthesurer of Englon and of sir Jamez blount knyght,' by 



* This apparently, though not oertainly, 
refers to F. 

* Third son of Sir Walter Blount, Lord 
High Treasurer of England and first Baron 
Mountjoy, 1465 ; d. 1474 (see * Diet, of Nat. 
Biog.*). Lord Mountjoy's principal seat 
was at Elvaston, Derbyshire (J. Pilkington, 
* View of Derbyshire,' ii. 102 ; see also 
J. Nichols, * Hist, of Leicestershire,' iv. 524 
and n.). The family were zealous Yorkists, 
Sir James's elder brother Walter being 
killed fighting for Edward 4 at the battle of 
Bamet in 1471 (Pat. RoUs, Ed. 4, 1467-77, 
p. 298). Early in Edward 4's reign he 
received a grant of the keepership of the 
manor of Stretton-in-the-field, in cos. Lei- 
cester and Derby (see Rot. Pari. v. 602 b). 
In 1478 he was on the commission of the 
peace for Derbyshire (Pat. Rolls, 1467-77, 
p. 611). He, together with John Fitz- 
herbert, was one of four commissioners 
appointed by Edward 4 on January 9, 1474, 
to take seisin of the forfeited estates of 



George Duke of Clarence (ib. p. 428). He 
received as a reward a grant of the manor 
of Apedale, or Apdale, and of rents &c. in 
Uttekcestre, or Uttexhater, and Marchyng- 
ton-under-Nedewode, co. Stafford, forfeited 
by John Delvys, Esq., one of the Lan- 
castrians who had fought at Tewkesbury 
(see Rot. Pari. vi. 145 a and 218 b). He 
was appointed lieutenant of the castle of 
Hammes in 1476, and continued to hold it 
after the accession of Richard 3 (J. Gaird- 
ner, ♦ L. and P. R. 3 and Hen. 7,' i. 16 ; 
Pat. Rolls, 1476-85, p. 499). Here he kept 
prisoner John de Vere, Earl of Oxford, who 
in 1473 had been captured at the siege of 
St. Michael's Mount, Cornwall, and ever 
since confined at Hammes (Pol. Verg., 
Camd. Soc. p. 158). Oxford persuaded 
Blount, about the end of 1484, to renounce 
allegiance to Richard 3 and go over with his 
garrison to the service of the Earl of Rich- 
mond. This was the first important defec- 
tion after the crushing of Buckingham's 



MADELEY V. FITZHERBERT 



65 



force wheroff the eeid sir Robert and sir Jamez made awarde betwene 
the seid partiez in the maner and forme as in the seid answere is 
specified, the whych awarde the seid John Fitzherbert on hys partie 
hath well and truely kepped and performyd. 

Indorsed. Termino trinitatis anno xj™°.^ 

This aunswer was geuen in by John Fitzherbert the 
xiiy^** day of Juyn Anno quo supra. 



rebellion in the autumn of 1483. ' When 
Henry saw therle be was ravisshyd with 
joy ' (ib. p. 208). Blount having left the 
castle, together with his wife Elizabeth, 
to the care of the garrison during his 
absence with Earl Henry in Paris, it was 
besieged by the garrison of Calais under 
orders from Richard 3. Being relieved by 
the Earl of Oxford marching from Paris, 
terms were made and the garrison marched 
out free. Richard thought it wise to 
grant a pardon to Mrs. Blount and the 
garrison of seventy-four men whose names 
are set out in Pat. Roll, 1476-85, p. 626 
(January 27, 1485). Blount himself was 
attainted, though the Act of attainder does 
not appear on the Bolls of Parliament, 
and the Act reversing the attainder, which 
passed in 1485, on the opening of Henry 7's 
first parliament, wrongly recites as the date 
of the original attainder 1 Bic. 3 (1484) 
(see Rot. Pari. vi. 274 a, and cf. ib. 246, 
247). He was one of the commanders of 
the forces which landed with Richmond at 
Milford Haven, and was knighted by the 
earl upon that occasion (W. C. Metcalfe, 

* Book of Knights,' p. 9). No sooner was 
Henry on the throne than Blount began to 
reap the reward of his services. In 1485 
he was made steward of the Honour of 
Tutbury, in Staffordshire and Derbyshire, 
constable of the castle there, and master- 
forester of Nedewode and Duffeld Firth 
(Rot. Pari. vi. 362 b; W. Campbell, * Mat.' 
i. 551). On March 2, 1486, he was rein- 
stated in the Ueutenancy of Hammes for 
a tenure of twelve years (W. Campbell, 

* Mat.' i. 868). He received from the duchy 
of Lancaster, for seven years, a lease of the 
water-mills of Uttoxather, the pasturage 
called Uttoxather More and Monebede, co. 
Stafford, and of the herbage and pannage 
of the park of Shothill, co. Derby (Novem- 
ber 8, 1487) (ib. ii. 202). On the death of 
his brother John Lord Mountjoy he was 
granted the wardship and marriage of the 
son (January 24, 1488) (ib. p. 230). A few 
days later (February 1, 1488) he received a 



great grant of lands, comprising no fewer 
than five manors, with other lands, in 
Warwickshire, Leicestershire, and North- 
ants, part of the forfeited estates of William 
Catesby, Humfrey Stafford, Richard Revell, 
and Roger Wake. This grant is expressed 
to be * for services, rendered at great bodily 
risk and expense, in favouring the king's 
title to the crown ' (ib. p. 235, 236). Another 
grant from the duchy of Lancaster (Fe- 
bruary 26, 1488) was a lease to farm for 
seven years the lordships of Hertyngton 
and Shene, Derbyshire, and of the herbage 
and pannage of nine parks in Staffordshire 
and four in Derbyshire (ib. pp. 258, 259). 
These grants indicate that he had taken to 
sheep-farming on a large scale. He was 
nominated by the duchy of Lancaster a 
special commissioner to inquire into dis- 
putes between its tenants and the abbot of 
Burton on November 10, 1488 (ib. p. 361), 
and, * by way of reward ' perhaps for these 
services, was paid twenty-five marks (16^. 
13s. 4d.) in Easter term 1489 (ib. p. 437). 
He was also made chairman of a body of 
commissioners to inquire into the manage- 
ment of the lands of the duchy on July 10. 
1489 (ib. pp. 462,<463). Upon the eve of 
Henry's setting out for an expedition 
against France in 1492 he was nominated 
one of the feoffees for executing the king's 
will (Rot. Pari. vi. 444). As lieutenant of 
Hammes he would probably accompany 
Henry to France, and his will, dated July 
24, 1492, little more than two months 
before the army sailed, was perhaps made 
in view of the expedition. The army re- 
turned in the following winter. Blount's 
will was proved on May 24, 1493. He left 
his wife Elizabeth surviving, and nomi- 
nated her and Robert Lytton, Esq., 
under-treasurer of England, his executors 
(Sir H. Nicolas, ' Test. Vet.' pp. 416). The 
record of his life shews that he was a 
qualified person to act as an arbitrator in 
this case. 

' Wednesday, June 8, to Wednesday, 
June 22, 1496. 



66 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

H. This is the replicacion of John madeley to the answer of 
John Fitzharbert. 

The seid John madeley seith as to the furst parte of his answer in 
avoidynge of the forfetnre of the jniunccion of xl li. that the same 
John Fitzharbert by his seid aunswer shewith no thyng in avoidynge 
of the seid forfeiture though it were so that his seid answer were true 
as it is nat for the seid John madeley seth that he neuur agreed nor 
assented to any such communicacion as in his seid answer he hath 
allegged wherfor he praieth that the seid John Fitzherbert may be 
committed to ward vnto the tyme that he hath paied to our 
soueraigne lorde the kyng the same forfeiture of xl li. And where he 
surmiseth by his seid answer that the seid John madeley hath suyd 
bifore the Kynges Councell for the same mater thereto he seith that 
long tyme syth the seid jniunccion ^ the seid John Fitzherbert dyd 
broke the howse and close of the seid John madeley and dyd take a 
wey yj kyne and a good horse price of xiij s. iiij d.' and the same 
bestes drove vnto Glaxston ^ and there them kept in pownde vnto the 
tyme the seid horse was dede ^ wheruppon the seid John madeley 
complayned to the kynges Councell of the seid wrongful takyng, and 
as to the last article of his seid answer the seid John madeley seith 
that at Stafford bifore that the Justice theire proceded to any assise 
the seid John madeley delyuered to the seid John Fitzharbert the 
kynges prive Seal as is afore reherced and he wold nat loke in it but 
cruelly said that he wold haue his assise * to passe ^ at that tyme ^ and 
theruppon the Councel of the seid John madeley ^ dyd plede diuerse 
and many barrez and theruppon on the morowe the Councel of the 
seid John Fitzharberd made ij titlez to al thous barrez and the 
Councel of the defendant dyd byde in la we ® vppon one of them and 

* Here follow the words * that is to witte aliennm non quod sibi usnrpet tenementom 
on Shroffe Sonday last passed at Even- ?el iara, non faoit disseysinam sed trans- 
song tyme ' struck through. gressionem. Sed quoniam inoertum est 

^ The pence interlined. quo animo hoc faciat, ideo querens sibi 

' See A, p. 55, n. 6, supra. perquirat per assisam et quo oasu queren- 

* See Introduction, p. cxx. The horse dum erit a iudioe quo animo hoc fecerit, 
was not a yaluable one — probably one used vtrum eo quod ius habeat in re vel non 
for farm work. The price of saddle horses habeat ... si per errorem vel ignorantiam 
was considerably higher. See J. E. T. (hoc fecerit) excusatur a disseysina quia 
Rogers, * Hist. Ag. and Prices,' iv. 335-7. est potius transgressio quam disseysina 

^ I.e. the Assise of Novel Disseisin, quam quidem si cognoverit emendet ; et si 

Fitzherbert's complaint being that he had dedixerit, vertitur assisa in iuratam ad 

been disseised by the plaintiff. See C, inquirendum de transgressione et per hoc 

p. 57, supra. He had a right to the assise stet vel cadat.' Bracton, f. 216 b. 
because the plaintiff in this case asserted a *^ Interlined, 

title. *Omnis disseysina est transgressio, ' Interlined. 

sed non omnis transgressio est disseysina. • * * A demurrer commeth of the Latine 

Et si eo animo forte ingrediatur fundum word demorari, to abide ; and therefore he 



MADELEY r. FITZHERBERT 67 

then by the agrement of both the said parties an issue was taken and 
one of the assise ^ sworen ^® and nat bifore as in his seid answer he 
hath allegged. All which matters the seid John madeley is redy to 
proue 4&C. 

I. This is the reioinder of John Pitzhebert * to the replicacion 

of John madeley. 

The seid John Fitzherbert seyth that his seid answere is good & 
true in euery poynt as in the seid answere is alegged. Without that 
that the seid John Fitzherbert brake the house of the seid John 
madeley. And without that that the seid John Fitzherbert toke any 
horse from the seid John madeley which died in the pounde as the 
seid John madeley hath surmitted by his seid replicacion, all which 
maters he is redy to prove as this court will award and prayeth to be 
dismyssed out of the same with his resonable costes & charges for his 
wrongfull vexacion in that behalfe. 



John Fitzherbert sworn saith that this his ansuere is treu in euery 
point, and he saith that thagrement wherof in this within wreten 
ansuere is made mencion was made in the hous ^ Sir Robert litton 
vndertresorer sith the said Jniunccion geven and in the same terme 
that it was geven. The said John Fitzherbet ^ saith farthre that he 
after he had receyvid the priue seale as it is contaigned in the byll, 
noone othrewis pleityd his assise to thyssew but this. So it was he 
saith that after as he had receyvyd the priuy seale, his counsel and 
the counsell of the said John madeley were agred that the Ray shold 
be affermyd ^ and no more tobe doon at that time, and then Mr. 
Tremayle * and the Chef Baron ^ then there jugges said it was ageinst 
thordre of the Court without so were the matier were pleatyd to an 
Issew. Wherupon this deponent causid his Counsell to pleate farthre 
and or it was fullye pleatyd to an Issew the said John madeley was 
agreed to the same pleatyng, Jnsomuch that after thaire agrement 

which demurreth in law is said, he that ' On dorse of F. 

abideth in law : Moratur or demoratur in ^ Sic. 

lege.' CJoke upon Littleton, 71 b. 'I have not found any other instance 

* Le. the jury. This document illus- of this phrase. It appears to mean that 

trates the ambiguities of the word ' assise/ ' challenge to the array ' was waived, 
on which see Littleton, * Tenures/ § 234 * See Goryng v. Northumberland, Earl 

(Coke upon Littleton, 154 b, 155 a). of, p. 99, n. 8. 

'* For the meaning of the plea, which * Sir William Hodie or Hody. Chief 

is very obscure, see Introd., pp. cxzi, cxxii. Baron of the Exchequer 1486-1522 (?). 

» Sic. See ' Diet. Nat. Biog.* 

F 2 



68 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

vpon the same, euery of thaim pleatyd to other oone pleagh. And he 
saith that his mynd was not to go any fathre to the tryall of the said 
jssew but there to haue restyd though noo agrement had been had 
betwix thaim by cavse of the commaundment in the said priuy seale. 



Kichard Gener of QuykkeshuU in the Counte of Stafford a blynde 
man of the age of kxx yeres and more sworn & ex [amined] * * ^ 

* * * ^ June the xi^^ yere of the reigne of kyng henry the vij*^ ' 
byfore John Abbott of Dieulieucres ' John Abbott of Crokesden * & 
[George Abbott of Rowcetur *] sayth that he was born vppon the same 
Grounde in QuykkeshuU now in varians where as John madeley now 
dwellyth and * ' it was on John Okers & Kateryn his wyflf in the 
ryght of the said Kateryn and sayth his fader was tenaunt to John 
Verney ^ hir fader & after to the said John Oker & Kateryn and then 
the said John and Kateryn dwellyd vppon the same grownd by the 
space of iij yeres & after they removed to mapulton ^ & ther the said 
John Oker® died and the said Kateryn was weddyd to on Symon 
hanley of hanley in Worcester shyr ® and then the fader of the said 
Richard Gener was bayly to the said Symon & Kateryn & payd theym 
yerely xx s. many yeres vnto the tyme that his said fader brought one 
Thomas madeley to the said Symon & Kateryn to take it of them and 
then the said Thomas madeley toke it paying xiij s. iiij d. yerely & 
payd no more by cause he promysed her to geve her more la[nd] ^ 
* ^ * ^ on trust therof the said Symon & Kateryn 

delyuerd theyr evidens to the said Thomas madeley and the said 
Thomas madel[ey] ^ * ^ * ^ no more land butt he payd 

his rent alway and then the said Thomas madeley died &' John 
madeley his son occupied * * * ^ vnto the tyme that on 

' Parchment torn. to Dagdale, * Monast.' vi. 410. It was one 
' 1496. of the lesser houses, its net revenue being 
" A Cistercian abbey founded in 1214 at lOOZ. a year (ib.). It held land in Quick- 
Leek in Staffordshire by Randal de Blunde- wull.* Ib. 
ville, Earl of Chester. Dugdale notes an ' See 1), p. 59, n. 1, supra, 
abbot, John (surname unknown), here in * In Derbyshire, on the other side of the 
1438, the next on his list being Thomas, in Dove, about six miles N.N.E. of Quixhill. 
1499. It was one of the greater monasteries, ' A place name, appearing in the form 
its income at the Dissolution being 227Z. 5s. of Ocoure, for Oakover, in a plea of 1257 
(Dugdale, * Monast. Angl.* v. 626). It lies (Staffordshire Hist. Coll. [1883], iv. 135). 
about twelve miles north-west of Quixhill. The seat of the family was at Oakover. See 
* See C, p. 58, n. 7, supra. * Visitation of Staffordshire ' (1614), ib. v. 
^ An abbey of Black Canons founded by ii. 302 &o, 
Bichard Bacon in 1146 at Bowcester, Bou- * An ancient family at Upper Hanley. 
cester, or Bocettur, Staffordshire, about a See T. B. Nash, * £list. of Worcestershire ' 
mUe and a half south of Quixhill. The (1781), i« 365. 
name of this abbot is altogether unknown 



MADELEY V. FITZHERBERT 69 

Bauff Fitzherbert bowght it of the said Katerj'n and the said Bichard 
Gener was present when possession was delyuerd to the said Bauff by 
one henry Clerk her attourney by the same token that ther was 
thyder brought a white Wodecok '^ the which was send to my lady 
hastynges that now is.'^ 

Bichard John of thage of Ix yeres & more examined the said 
day & yer byfore the said Abbottes saith that he dwellyd vppon 
the grownd in Quykkeshull wher as John madeley now dwellyth 
with on William his vncle & att that tyme the said William 
John payd the rent therof to on Thomas Gener fader to the said 
Bichard Gener that then was bayly to the said Kateryn. In Wittnesse 
wherof and for the more credens to be hadd in the same the forsaid 
John Abbott of Dieulieucres John Abbott of Crokesden & George Abbott 
of Bowcetur to this present wrytyng haue sette theyr seales ^^ the day 
& yer ab[ove written]. 



LEAD MINERS OF YORKSHIRE v. THE MERCHANTS OF YORK.» 

To the kyng our souereyn lord 

1499 Shewith humbly vnto your highnes your poer sugettes and con- 
tinuall oratours all the myners and makers of lede within the countie 
of York that where it was late ordynyd and enactyd in your most high 
court of parlement holden at Westminster the [seventh] ^ yeare of your 
most noble reigne by the Autorite of the same such weghtes and 
mesures of brasse as your grace hadd then causid to be made accordyng 
and agreable vnto certen old weghtes & mesurs of long tyme remaynyng 
in your exchecquer shuld be oonly vsid and occupied and that noon other 
weghtes ne mesures except such as were agreable and of lyk weght 
and mesure with the same should be vsid within this your Bealme 

'*• Not, apparently, by way of livery of S.P. Dom. Henry 8, i. 1372). The phrase 

seism. The incident marks the occasion ' that now is ' in the mouth of an old man of 

in witness's memory. Of woodcocks Morris 80 recalls that William Lord Hastings, the 

says : * White individaals have been met father, had been beheaded by Richard 3 in 

with, and cream-coloured ones.* The Rev. 1483. See G. E. C, 'Complete Peerage' 

Gilbert White, of Selbome, mentions a (1892), iv. 186. 

white woodcock &c. F. 0. Morris, ' Hist. '^ The seals, for which the three paroh- 

of British Birds ' (1891), iv. 240. ment slips remain, have been removed. 

'* Perhaps Mary, Lady Hastings and > S.G.P. Hen. 8, Bundle 18, No. 289. 

Hungerford, wife of Sir Edward Hastings, Wrongly sorted : should be Hen. 7. A 

Lord Hastings de Hastings, lord of the charred fragment. No other document in 

manor of Dronfield, Derbyshire, about thirty the case found. 

miles N.E. of Quixhill (Inq. p. m. Henry 7, ' Illegible in MS., should be * seventh ' 

424). Of. p. 29, n. 21, supra. Lady Hastings (1491). *An Acte for Waightes and 

had numerous interests in Derbyshire (see Measures,' 7 Hen. 7, c. 3. 



70 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

and by the same autorite it was enactyd that oon of euery of the said 
weghtes and mesurs shuld be conveyd vnto euery shire town within this 
your Bealme to thentent there to be vsid and occupyed & noon other 
accordyng vnto the said ordynaunce by force where of oon of euery of 
the said weghtes & mesure were conveyd vnto the citie of York ^ and 
there remayneth in there Gyld hall Which notwithstandyng so it is now 
good & gracious lord that the said march auntes will nott by of your said 
oratours there said lead by your said weghtes but vsis at all tymes after 
that your said oratours be agreid with the said marchauntes what 
they shuld haue for A foder * your said oratours trustyng veryly to 
be vsid with the same weghtes to wee the said leed after there pleasour 
and for there synguler lucour Wee the said leed with certen weghtes 
made by the said marchauntes withoute eny auctorite which excedith 
your said weghtes in euery D*' weight xxx** or xl li. or more * and yit 
the said marchauntes not therwith contented lyeth in the scale a by 
weght of vij li. to euery gret peece of leed which they will in no wise 
rakyn in part of the foder by which vntrue and feynyd weghtes and 
dyuers misdemeanynges of the weyer & keper of the crayn your said 
poor oratours er gretly inpouerysshed and almost vtterly undeyn. 
And more ouer wher withoute tyme of mynd there was neuer payid 
nor vsid to be payd more then ij d. ob. for weyng and drawyng vp of 
a foder of leed at the said crayn So it is nowe good and gracious 
lord that the yere now last past oone John Metkalff ^ beyng mayre of 
the said cite the said mayre to geder with the comen Gouncell of the 
same cite of there cuvetus myndes and without eny lawfull autorite 
ordayned and enacted among theym selff that your said Oratours 
shall pay for euery foder of leed by theym brought to the said cite and 
weid at the said crane at all tymes thirafter xiiij d. whan the saide 



* The evidence of this survives in R.O. Lord Mayor of York in 1498. F. Drake, 
Misoell. of Exchequer ^, from which it ap- * Eboraoum ' (1786), p. 363. Apparently a 
pears that the standara weights and mea- dealer in plate (see * Test. Ebor.' p. 800). 
sures, including half a cwt. and its fractions, Some time before 1509 he seems to have 
were delivered to Marmaduke Constable been conipelled, by financial embarrass- 
and William Oascoyne, knights of the shire, ments, to pledge his gold ring, ' Test. Ebor.' 
for the county»and city of York on Dec. 8, (1884) v. 5 n. He was, presumably, a man 
1495. of literary tastes, for Brian Wensdaill, 

* Or * fother,* generally 19^ cwt. See notary and procurator of the Ck)urt of York, 
J. E. T. Rogers, ' Hist. Agr. and Prices/ bequeathed to him, in 1519, * a litill buyk, 
i. 168. But G. Malynes, * Lex Mercatoria,' viz. dicisions of Root ' (ib. p. 100). He was 
269 (Lond. 1622), speaks of * a f other of also a legatee of 40s. under the will of John 
lead of twentie hundreth.' See J. A. H. Marshall, merchant, of York, dated Dec. 15, 
Murray, * Eng. Diet.' s.v. 1524 (ib. 198). His will was proved Jan. 27, 

^ See Introd., p. cl. 1530, as of the parish of St. Mich. Owse- 

* John Metkalff , or Metcalf, sheriflf of bridgend, York, merchand. Index of Wills 
York, 1494. An alderman of York in 1497. in the York Registry (Yorkshire Archaeol. 
• Test. Ebor.* (Surtees Soc. 1869), iv. 121. Assoc. 1891), vol. xi. p. 119. 



LEAD MINERS OF YORKSHIRE r. THE MERCHANTS OF YORK 71 

mayre and bredren of the said cite hath euer after sett decre * ^ said 
• ® levyd contrary Eight and good conciens wherevpon your 

said peer Orators well seyng and perceyueng aswell the said onlawfoll 
weghtes as the said onlawfuU decre indendyd and of ♦♦•♦♦*9 
past downe your streme of ows forby the said cite with there said leed 
vnto your town of Kyngeston upon Hull intendyng there to haue 
vttered and sold the same ® which as soon as ^ the said mayre & his 
brethren * perceived withoute eny lawfull autorite and to thentent to 
compel your said sugettes to vtter *^ *^ *^ *^ weghte 
* * • * ♦ • 7 ^ould not ® suflfre them to passe down 
your seid streme to such tyme ^ as they had paid vnto the said mar- 
chauntes * ^ the foder xiiij d. *^ 



HEWYT AND OTHERS & EXCITER, MAYOR &c. OF, v, 
LONDON, MAYOR &c. OF.' 

A. To the right reuerent father yn god the bisshop 
of Sarisbiiry and the keper of the Kynges 
brode Seaill ^ 

1500 Mekely besechith your gode and gracious lordship your daily 
Oratours Richard Hewyt^ John Gumby* and John Skrevener 
marchawntes of the Citie of Exciter, That where as your seid Oratours 
came to The Citie of London this wike with there marchauntyes as 
thei have vsed to doo yn tymes past, And as thei were comyng 
towardes the seid Citie of London at Ludgate, iiij seruauntes of John 
Hawis * and William Stede '' nowe beyng Shiryffes of the seid Citie of 

' MS. torn. ' John Gumby, senior bailiff and re- 

* MS. obliterated. ceiver of the city, 1504. Izacke, p. 105. 

»-• MS. indecipherable. * Sheriffs in 1501. J. Stow, ' Survey/ ed. 

'" MS. here much torn and injured by J. Strype, 6th ed. 1755, ii. p. 224. Neither 

water. became mayor. 

' S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 78. John Hawes, mercer, one of a number 

^ Henry Deane, translated from Bangor who on May 4, 1480, received a general 

to Salisbury, Dec. 7, 1499 (Le Neve ' Fasti,' pardon from Edward 4 ^for debts <bo. 

ii. 604) ; Keeper of the Great Seal, October 13, due to him, apparently in connexion with 

1500 ; Abp. of Canterbury, April 26, 1501 ; customs duties (* Pat. Bolls/ 20 Ed. 4, 

d. 1503. * Diet. Nat. Biog.' p. 243). There appear to have been more 

' Biohard Hewyt, bailiff and steward of persons than one of the name. The will 
the city of Exeter, 1497. B. Izacke, ' An- of John Hawes, or Hawe, of St. Thomas of 
tiquities of Exeter ' (2nd ed. 1724), p. 98 ; Aeon, London ; Sion, Chelchehith, Middle- 
senior bailiff and receiver of the city, sex, and Thadyngton, Derby, was proved in 
1502 (ib. p. 104) ; mayor, 1506 (ib. p. 105) 1517. J. C. G. Smith, Index, i. 261. 
and 1513 (ib. p. 107). WiU proved (of St. " Grocer and alderman, probably dead 
Lawrence, Exeter) 1519. J. C. C. Smith, in 1507. B. Heath, * Hist, of the Grocers* 
Index, i. 271. Company ' (3rd ed.. 1869), p. 425). In 1486 



72 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



London, and by there commaundement toke of your seid Oratours 
XV 8. yn golde, and v pecee of lynyn clothe callid Doglas,^ claymyng 
of theym to have the seid godea vnto the tyme that your seid Oratours 
hadde agreed with the seid Shiriffes® for a wrongefulP Custom, 
whiche thei clayme, called Skavage,^® Where that your seid Oratours 
nor none of the seid Citie of Exciter neuer paied no such Gustomes,^^ 
Wherfore it may please your gode lordship the premyssys tenderly 
consydered to commaunde your seriaunt of Armes^* to goe to the 
seid Shiriffes, commaundyng theym to delyuer your seid Oratours 
there seid godes, Orels to appere before your seid lordship to morowe 
yn the sterre chambre, to aunswere to the premissys accordyng to 
right and godd consciens. And thus for the love of god and yn the 
way of cheritie. 



B. To the kyng oure souereigne Lord & 
his most honourable Counsell 

In most humble wise besechith youre highnes youre daily Oratours 
the maier Citezeyns & burgesis of youre Citie of Exiter, That where 

he contributed four marks {21, 13s. id,) to 
Henry 7*8 forced loan. W. Campbell, 
* Materials/ ii. p. 95. 

A person of the name of William Stede, 
or Steed, at this time owned a mansion at 
Harrietsham, Kent. E. Hasted, *HiBt. of 
Kent,' ii. p. 457, n. 1. 

^ Also * Dowlas ' <bo., so called from 
Daoules, or Doalas, S.E. of Brest in 
Brittany; a coarse kind of linen cloth. 
J. A. H. Murray, • Eng. Diet.,' s.v. Dowlas. 

* *De la qaelle custnme (Scavage) la 
moite partient as Visoountz, et lautre moite 
as hostes en les mesouns des queax les 
marchauntz sount herbergez, qi amesnent 
marchaundises dount Scawenge vient ; meis 
nepurquant qe yceaux hostes soient de la 
fraunchise de la citee ' (Liber Albas [Bolls 
Series, 1859], edited by H. T. Biley), i. 228. 

' The above quotation and the list of 
articles on which scavage was leviable on 
pp. 22^5 shew that it was intended as a 
duty on foreign importers. See also C, 
p. 74, n. 1, infra. 

'" Scavage, schauage, or shewage. 'Fait 
assavoir qe "Scawenge " est dit come " de- 
monstiaunce *' pur ceo qe y covient qe 
marchauntz demonstrent as Viscountz 
marchandises des queux deit estre pris 
custume * (Liber Albus, supra oit.). The 
scavage on the load of canvas was 12(2. 
(lb. 225). The scavage of the City of London 
had been granted by Henry 7 inmiediately 
after his accession (October 26, 1486) to 
Humfrey Bayneford, gentleman, for life 



( W. Campbell, * Mat.' i. p. 100). This person 
died in 1497 (J. C. C. Smith, 'Index of 
Wills,' ii. p. 489). This grant was probably 
in derogation of the franchises of the city, 
and the city had perhaps resumed the 
appointment, the nomination to which it 
appears to have previously enjoyed, since 
in 1402 the sherifiFs farmed it out to a 
private speculator. * Bot. Pari. iii. 491, a, b. 

" Exeter was a daughter of the city of 
London (C. Gross, *The Gild Merchant' 
[1890], i. p. 247). The charter of Edward 1 
recites that of Henry 2. *Et sciatis eos 
(cives Exoniffi) habere consuetudines 
Londoniarum; et ita testati sunt ipsi 
Barones Londoniarum ' (Liber Custumarum 
[Bolls Series], 1860, edited by H. T. Biley, 
p. 667). The charter of John ran : ' Volu- 
mus etiam et firmiter praecipimus, et hac 
priBsenti Charta nostra confirmamus, quod 
iidem cives nostri sint quieti de theolonio, 
passagio et pontagio, tam in terris quam in 
aquis, tam in feriis quam in mercatis, de 
omni sa^culari servitio et consuetudine per 
omnes terras nostras, citra mare et ultra, 
et per omnem potestatem nostram, qun 
Bex Bicardus frater noster eis concessit, 
quantum ad Begem pertinet (ib. p. 668). 
On October 12, 1486, Henry 7 granted a 
general Inspeximus and Confirmation of 
previous charters from Henry 2 to Edward 4 
(G. OUver, * Hist, of Exeter ' [1861], p. 286. 
See further Introd., p. cxlii. 

" See p. 247, n. 9, and Introd., p. 
xxvi. 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V. LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 73 

youre aeid Citie is and of the tyme that no mynde is to the contrarie 
hath been an auncient Citie & burgh and is & of all the same tyme 
hath been auncien demeane ^ And the maier & Citizens of the seid 
Citie and the Burgesis of the same haue & by all the same tyme haue 
had diners preuileges Frauncheses and liberties aswell by the graantes 
of your noble progenitours Kynges of Englond as oderwise, And 
amonges oder preuileges Frauncheses and liberties haue been & vsed 
to be & goo quite free & discharged in your Citie of London & all oder 
Cities & burghes within youre realme of Englond of all maner of toll 
& Shewage oderwise called Skawage amonges oder thynges,* So it is 
most gracious souereign lord that the maier Sheriifes & Cominaltie 
of youre Citie of London nowe of late wrongfully & contrarie to the 
previleges Frauncheses & liberties aforeseid of youre seid Citie of 
Exceter haue claymed to haue Shewage odirwise called Skawage of 
youre seid Oratours in youre seid Citie of London and as diuers of 
youre seid Oratours that is to sey Bichard Hewyt John Gonby & John 
Scryuener were lately commyng towardes youre seid Citie of London 
at Ludgate iiij seruauntes of John Hawys and William Stede nowe 
beyng Sheriflfes of the seid Citie of London & by there commaunde- 
ment toke of youre seid Oratours xv s. in gold and v peces in lynyn 
cloth called Doglas claymyng of them to haue the seid goodes vnto 
the tyme that youre seid Oratours had aggreed with the seid Sheriffes 
for a wrongful! custome whiche they clayme called Skawage where 
that youre seid Oratours Citezeyns ne burgezes of youre seid Citie of 

» * In the year 1086 the king had 285 * Township and Borough ' (1898), p. 72. 
houses in Exeter paying custom ME. A. ^ Ancient demesne was the Terra Regis 
Freeman, Exeter [1895], p. 43). But Edwardi of Domesday. The theory being 
Domesday does not speak of Exeter as a that land in Ancient Demesne furnished 
whole as Terra Regis. See Domesday the king's household with provisions, it 
Book (ed H. Ellis, 1816), vol. iii. (Index was exempt from all payment of toll (E. 
Locorum, 'Execestre,' p. 249). This is not Coke, 2 Inst. 542). Cf. the claims of the 
conclusive proof that it was not Ancient inhabitants of Leystof t, Kyrkeley, and Pake- 
Demesne. Cf. Y.B. 49 Ed. 3, pi. 8 (Fitz- fyld, Suffolk, 'by reson wherof * (i.e. being 
herbert, Abr. Monstraverunt, 4). * Touts in ancient demesne) * they owe to be quytte 
les demesnes qui fuerent en la maine Seint of all maner of Tollys Customes <b other 
E. sent aunoiens demesne, mesque ils exacoions for the sale of all their seid wares 
fuerent aliens a estraunge mains quant le & marchaundyses in all markettys & faiers 
liver de Domesday se fist, come il avient within this Realme of Inglond ' (Jettonr 
del manor de Totenham,' &c. (P. Vinogra- and others v, Hull, Mayor of. Select Cases 
doff, * Villainage in England ' [1892], p. 90. from the Court of Requests, Selden Soc. 
Cf. P. and M. Hist. Eng. Law, i. 382, n. 1). [1898], p. 37). A royal grant of 1488 
The claim of Ancient Demesne was con- (November 20) to the town of Becston 
Btantly being advanced. The Placitorimi recites. Whereas the men & tenants of the 
Abbreviatio for the first twenty years of ancient demesne of the crown of England 
Edward I's reign gives twenty cases. But are quit of toll, stallage, chiminage, <&o., 
in only two of these did the claimants get (&c.' (W. Campbell, * Mat.' ii. 365). See also 
a judgement (P. and M., Hist. Eng. Law, i. Select Cases in the Court of Requests, p. 
861, n. 2). Boroughs especially claimed to 39, n. 3, for the writ on behalf of Tenants 
be the king's demesne. F. W. Maitland, in Ancient Demesne. 



74 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Exceter neuer paid eny suche customes ne oder like contrarie to the 
liberties & priuilege of the same youre Citie of Exceter to there gret 
cost trouble vexacion & damages and to the grete wrong inpouerissh- 
yng & vndoyng of youre seid Citie of Exceter if it shuld so contynewe 
without due reformacion, Please it youre highnes the premisses 
graciously considred to commaunde the same maire & SherifTes to 
appere before youre highnes & youre Counsell to answer to the pre- 
misses & to abide & obey suche order & direccion in the premysses as 
shall accord with right & good consciens And youre seid besechers 
shall contynuelly pray to God for the preseruacion of youre most 
noble & roiall astate long prosperiously to endure. 

Indorsed.^ Termino hillarii anno xyj° ** 

Secunda billa. Giuitas Exoniensis contra London. 
Exon contra London. 
Excestre contra London. 
London et Exeter. 

c. This is thanswer of the mayour and cominaltie of the Citie 

of London to the byll of the mayour citizens and Burgeses 
of the citie of excetter. 

The maire and cominaltie of the sayd Citie of London for theire 
aunswere to the said bel sayen That the sayd citie of london is the 
maist auncyent citie of this realme of Englonde and that within the 
same citie of london of auncyent tyme when the Shirefweke of the 
said Citie of london was in thandes and possession of dyuerce auncient 
and noble kinges of this Bealme of Englonde the same noble kynges 
were than and before that tyme oute of mynde possessed by theyre 
Offycers Shireffes of the same citie of london of the said custume 
callid Scavage and haue vsed to haue and take the same custume 
called Scavage by the same Shireffes perteynyng to the same 
Shirefwek of london by all the same tyme as of oone of the mooste 
pryncipall Custumes perteynyng of right to the said Shirefwyke of 
london. The which custume called Scavage by all the same tyme 
hauing been taken and vsed to be taken of al marchaundises brought 
from by yonde the see vnder the fourme folowyng that is to say 
Whansouer any marchaundyses brought from beyonde the see of any 
marchauntes haue come by water or by lande ^ within the liberties of 

' Apparently the first and second in- * January 23-Febraary 12, 1500. 

dorsements in the same hand, the third * Cf. A, p. 72, nn. 8, 9, supra. In the 

and fourth in another hand, and the fifth case of the merchants of Genoa, who peti- 

in a seventeenth-century hand. tioned parliament against Scavage in 1402, 



HEWYT AND OTHERS r. LONIX^N, MAYOR ETC. OF 75 

the said Citie of london there to be solde that the said Shyreff or 
Shyreffes of the said Citie for the tyme beyng or theyre deputyes 
haue taken the said Gustume called Scavage that is to say vpon the 
Shewyng of the said marchaundises byfore they be solde a certeyn 
somme of money after the rate of the said marchaundises the certente 
and quantiete of which sommes of money so vsed to be taken apperyth 
asweli by old bokes remaynyng within the same Citie of london of 
recorde as in the kynges Eschequrer and also for non payment of the 
said Custume called Scavage the said Shyreff or Shyreffes or there 
deputyes by all the same tyme haue vsed to sease the same mar- 
chaundyses and theym to reteyne till they were sattysfyed of the same 
custume ^ and afterward the ryght noble kyng John beyng possessed 
of the said Shirefwyk of london and of the said Custume called 
Scavage therto belongyng in like fourme as his noble progenitours 
oute of tyme of mynde byfore that were by his chartre and lettre 
patentes amonges other diuerce libertyes and Fraunchises graunted 
to the said citezeins of the Citie of london the said Shyrefwyk of 
london and of the countie of middlesex with almaner custumes and 
liberties and other profytz to the same Shyrefwyk and euery of theym 
in any wyse belongyng or perteynyng,^ whereof the same Custume 
called Scavage in maner and fourme aforesayd taken and vsed to be 
taken than and befor that from the tyme aforsayd than was and yet is 
parcell * and that the same citezeins shuld chose yeerly two citezeins 
of theym self to be shireffes of the said citie of london and Countie of 
middilsex for an hoole yere To haue and to holde the same Shiref wikes 
with all Custumes and profytz to theym or any of theym belongyng 
to the forsaid citezeins of london and there successours for euermore 
yeldyng and payng therfor yierly to the said noble kyng and his heires 
kynges of Englonde ccc li. and also the ryght noble kyng Edward the 

their complaint was that they had been duotion of letters testimonial from the 

compelled to unlade their goods at South- Customers and officials of Southampton 

ampton for examination by the Customers, showing that they had paid their dues 

and having paid customs there they were there. Bot. Pari. iii. 491. 

also mulcted in tolls by the town officers '^ This seizure actually took place in 

for having discharged their merchandise on the above case, and was one of the grounds 

land. When they reached London the of complaint. Ibid. 

sheriffs' farmer in his turn demanded * la * This was the third charter of King 
onstome appelle Schawage,' although it John, dated July 5, 1199, whereby he con- 
was only due for merchandise directly im- firmed his grant to the citizens of London 
ported into London from over sea. These of the sheriffwicks of London and Middle- 
exactions, they urged, were driving mer- sex. W. de G. Birch, * Historical Charters 
chants from England. The king in reply &c. of London ' (1887), p. 15. 
observed that his charter confirming the * The next line, about ten inches in 
privileges of the City of London made no length, is erased and the first four inches 
mention of Scavage, and forbade its cxac- of the line following it. 
tion from the petitioners upon their pro- 



76 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

iij^® by his lettres patentes ^ graunted to the sayd citezeins of london 
that they shuld be encorporat by the name of maire and cominaltie of 
the eitie of london as by the same lettres patentes more pleynly it 
apperyth.® The which graunteis liberties Custumes and Praunchises 
be ratefied and confirmed by auctoryte of diners parliamentes by 
reason wherof the mayre and cominaltie of the said Gitie of london 
haue and ben seased yerely of the said Custume called Scavage and 
haue vsed yerely and yet vse to take the same Custume by the 
Shireflfes of the said Citie of london for the tyme beyng as well of the 
said Citezeins of Exceiter bryngyng marchaundyses from beyonde the 
see to the said Citie to be sold as of all other marchauntes as a 
Custume dewe ^ and perteynyng to the same Shirefwyk of london in 
maner & fourme afore reherced and also that the same Shireffes of 
the said Citie of london for the tyme beyng oute of tyme of mynde 
yerely haue vsed and yet vse if the same Custume called Scavage 
were vnpayd to sease the said marchaundises of the said Citezens of 
Exceter and all oders soe brought in to the said Citie of london there 
to be soldo and the same marchaundyses to reteyne till they be 
satisfied of the said somme as a custume due and perteynyng to the 
same Shirefwyk of and in the maner and forme aforespecified and for 
asmich as the said Richard Hewit John Gomby and John Scrj'uener 
brought in to the said Gitie of london from beyonde the see there to 
be sold [xiij]** pakkes of lynen cloth for the which xiij pakkes of 
linen cloth the said custume called Scauage ought to be payde and 
the which somme of the said custume called Scavage of and for the 
said linnen cloth in the said pakkes extendyth after the Bate and old 
custume in the said old bokes to the somme of xiij s. due whiche 
somme of xiij s. of and for the said linen cloth in the said pakkes ^ 
John Hawes and William Stede than and yet beyng Shireffes of the 
same Citie of london demaunded of the said Richard Hewet John 
Gomby and John Scryvener as dew and perteynyng to theire said 
office of Shyrefwek of london The which somme of xiij s. to the same 

* A small + is in the margin against its incorporation on any charter hat pre- 
the line beginning * patentes ' and ending scribed (HowelPs State Trials [1810], viii. 

* citie of.* 1041). In the charter of Henry 8, dated 

' This seems to refer to the first charter February 26, 1247, the style is * mayor and 

of Edward 3, dated March 6, 1327, which commonalty.* The grant by John of the 

* for the good and laudable service which sheriffwicks at 300/. a year is set out at 
our beloved mayor, aldermen, and com- length in the charter of 1827. See Birch, 
monalty of the said city heretofore have pp. 32, 58. 

often done us ' confirms the city's liberties. ' MS. much faded ; reading doubtful. 

This charter, however, does not formally " Indecipherable, 

incorporate the citizens under the above * This charge is justified by Liber Albus, 

title, and in the Great Quo Warranto case p. 225 : * La charge (pack) de lienge teile, 

of 1681-83 the City did not venture to rest xij d.' 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V. LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 77 

John Hawes and William Stede to pay the said Kichard Hewit John *° 
John Scryvener than vtterly refused and yet refuse and the said 
which somme of xiij s. to the said John Hawes and WilUam Stede 
they haue not yet payd, Wherfore the said John Hawes and William 
Stede than as Shyreflfes of the said Citie of london seased the said 
XV s. in gold and v peces of lynnyn cloth callid douglass and theym yet 
reteyneth for non payment of the said somme of xiij s. of and for the 
said custume called Scavage aforsaid as lefuU was to theym to doo 
Withoute that that the said mayre citezeins and Burgeses of the said 
Citie of Exceiter and theyre predecessours from the tyme of noe mynde 
haue hadde vsed & enyoyed or ought to vse or to enjoye any such 
libertie or fredome to convey theyre marchaundyses to the said Citie 
of london there to be solde freely withoute paying of the said custume 
called Scavage in manor and fourme as the said mayre Citezens and 
burgesses by theyr said bil of compleynt haue surmy tted And withoute 
that the said mayre Citezens and Burgesys haue or euer had or vsed 
any pryvillage fraunchise or libertie or grauntes of the progenitours 
of our soveraine lorde the kyng or otherwise to be or goo quite free or 
discharged in the said Citie of london of all maner of Toll and 
Scavayge as by the said bill is surmytteid all which maters and euery 
of theym the said mayre and cominaltie of the said Citie of london 
wilbe redy to verifie as shalbe thought by your highness or by the 
lordes of your most honourable Counceill and prayen that theye maye 
for theyre liberties and custumes aforsayd accordyng * ® their 

predecessours the maire and cominaltie of the same Citie of london 
before haue hadde and enyoyed * ® * ® haue ^^ been alowed 

them ** by your noble progenitours in tyme past. And they shall 
daylye pray to almighty God for the preseruacion of your most noble & 
roiall astate. 

Indorsed. The Mayour Burgesses & 
Commonalty of Excestre 

versus 
Le Maiour & Sheriflfes 
of London. 
In another hand. Excestre. 



*" * Oomby ' omitted. " Beading doabtfnl ; MS. much defaced. 



78 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

D. The Beplicacion of the Maier Citizens and Burgences of the 
Citie of Excester to the answer of the Maier & Cominaltie 
of the Citie of London. 

The seid Maier Citezens & Burgences of the seid Citie of Excester 
seyn that the seid answer is vncerteyn & insufficient and no perfite 
answer to the seid hill And they seyn as they haue seid in ther seid 
bill, That the seid Citie of Excester is & of the tyme that no mynd is 
the contrarie hath been an auncient Citie & burgh and auncion 
demeyne And by reson therof if the maire citezens & burgences of the 
seid Citie of Excester had non oder graunte libertie ne priuylage they 
ought of right to be & goe quyte free & discharged in the seid Citie 
of london & in all oder Citez & burgh ^ within the Bealme of Englond 
of all maner toll skavage & oder like charges by reson that the seid 
Citie of Excester is & out of tyme of mynd hath been auncien demeyne 
whiche is not by the seid Maier & Cominaltie of the seid Citie of 
london denyed And ouer that the seid Maier Citezens & Burgences 
of the seid Citie of Excester seyn in euery thyng as they haue seid in 
ther seid bill of Compleynt. Withoute that the seid Kyng John or the 
kynges of Englond before tyme of mynd wer possessed by ther officers 
Sheriffes of london or oderwise of eny suche custome called skavage 
of the Maier Citezens or burgences of the seid Citie of Excester or 
vsed to haue or take eny suche custome of the Citezens & burgences 
of the seid Citie of Excester by the same Sheriffes or oder persones 
perteynyng to the Sherifwike or oderwise, And withoute that that 
the seid Custome called Skavage by all the same tyme hath been taken 
& vsed to be taken of all merchaundises brought from beyond the 
See by all merchauntes by water & by lond within the libertiez of the 
seid Citie of London there to be sold as it is surmytted by the seid 
answer, And withoute that that it apperith in the bokes remaynyng 
in the seid Citie or the recordes in the kynges Escheker that the 
kynges of Englond or the Sheriffes of the seid Citie of London or the 
seid Maier & cominaltie of London haue vsed to take Skavage of all 
merchaundisez brought by water & by lond to the seid Citie of 
London ther to be sold, or that the certentie or quantite of the 
sommes of money so vsed to be takyn appere in the seid bokes of 
London or in the recordes of the seid Eschekyr, or that the 
Sheriffes of the seid Citie of London or ther deputez by all the seid 
tyme haue vsed to sease & reteyne eny suche marchaundisez till they 
wer satisfied of the seid pretended custome or that they euer vsed to 

' Sic. 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V. LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 79 

sease or reteyne eny merchaundisez of eny of the Citezens & burgences 
of the seid Gitie of Excester for eny suche pretendid Gustome or vsed 
to haue of them eny suche Gustome. And without that that the seid 
Gustome called Skavage belongith or at eny tyme belonged to the seid 
Sherifwik or is & hath been parcell of the seid Sherifwike oute of 
tyme of mynde as is surmytted by the seid answer And without 
that that the maier & Gominaltie of the seid Gitie of london haue 
been seased yerely & vsed yerely to take the seid pretendid Gustome by 
the Rheriflfes of the seid Gitie of london for the tyme beyng as well of 
the Citezens of Excester as of oder marchauntes, or that the Sheriflfes 
of the seid Gitie of london out of tyme of mynde haue vsed to haue the 
marchaundices of the Gitezens or burgences of Excester or eny of 
them ^ & to resceyue ^ them ^ till they were paid of the seid pretended 
Gustome in maner & fourme as is surmytted by the seid answer, 
And withoute that that the seid maier and Gominaltie of the seid 
Gitie of london euer had or ought to haue or wer paid of eny suche 
Gustome of the seid Gitezens & burgences of Excester but of late 
whiche was by wrongful! compulsion, And withoute that that the 
seid maier & Gominaltie of the seid Gitie of london by the Sheriflfes 
of the seid Gitie for the tyme beyng ^ euer seased ^ or toke eny mar- 
chaundisez of the seid Gitezens or burgensez of Excester for the seid 
pretended Gustom vnto nowe of late that the seid maier & Gominaltie 
by the Sheriflfes of the seid Gitie of london wrongfully & with force 
toke & seased diuers merchaundisez of the seid Gitezens of Excester 
and also the seid xv s. contrarie to the lawe right & good consciens. 
All whiche maters the seid maier Gitezens & burgences of the seid 
Gitie of Excester been redy to proue as this Gourte will award, and 
prayen as they haue praied in ther seid bill. 

E. The Eeioyndre of the maire Shirifes and Gominaltie of the 
Gite of london to the Beplicacon of the maire Gitezins & 
Burgesses of Excestre. 

The saide maire Shirifes and Gominaltie sayen that theire 
aunswer is certen and sufl&cient and the said Beplicacon insufl&cient 
and vncerten to be reioyned vnto and sayen in all thinges as thei 
haue saide in theire aunswere. Without that that the said Gite of 
Excestre is or out of tyme of mynde hath been auncien demeane, 
And without that that tenauntes of Auncien Demean aught to be dis- 
charged of the said Gustume called Scavage in maner and fourme as 

^'"^ Interlined. * Qu. for reteyne. 



80 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



in the said Beplicacon is surmyttid. All which matiers the saide maire 
Shirifes and Gominaltie been redy to prove as this Gourte wille awarde 
and prayen as thei haue prayed by theire saide aunswer. 



F. These ben the deposicions of diuers Gitezens and inhabitantz 
of the Cite Excestre had and made beffore William Sylk ^ 
John Garell * and John Broke ' by vertue of the Kynges 
Writt of dedimus potestatem ^ to them directed. 

John Guscote ^ off the age of Ix yere one of the Gitezens and inha- 
bitantes of the seid Cite of Excestre Sworne and examyned sayth and 
deposith that he hath vsed to send lynnyn cloth to London by the 
Carriours from the xij yere of the rayn of Kyng Edwarde the iiij*^ 
vnto the xxij yere of his Raigne ^ and in all that tyme he neuer paied 
Skauage ne other Gustome ne none was asked hym saue onse a 
seruaunt of one ^ Gotyn ® came to the Sturre • in Bredstre *° in 

London and asked hym Scavage, and therupon one horwyll beyng of 



' William Sylk, or Sylke, educated at 
the University of Oxford, where he suppli- 
cated for the degree of B.G.L. May 26, 
1468 (C. W. Boase, • Register ' [1885], i. 
86). Possibly a son of William Sylk, of 
Bishop's Lynn, Norfolk (see Pat. Bolls, 
Ed. 4, 1468, p. 78). Archdeacon of Cornwall 
in 1491 (Le Neve, * Fasti ' [1854], i. 899) ; 
prebendary of Exeter April 15, 1499 (ib. 
411) ; will proved 1508. J. C. C. Smith, 
* Index,* ii. 515. 

' John Carell, or Caryll, serjeant-at-law, 
eldest son and heir of John Caryll, of 
Warnham, Sussex, by Griselda, daughter 
of Henry Belknap, cousin and heir to Sir 
BaJph Boteler, Lord Sudley, died July 11, 
1488. John Caryll, the son, was a member 
of the Inner Temple. He was made 
serjeant-at-law in 1605, and king's serjeant 
in 1514. He was a Bencher of the Inner 
Temple in 1508 (' Inner Temple Records,' 
ed. F. A. Inderwick (1896), i. 12). He 
married (1) Margaret, daughter of ~ Ellen- 
brigge, or Dalynbridge ; ^2) Jane, daughter 
and co-heir of Sir Robert Read, Chief 
Justice of the Common Pleas. Caryll died 
in 1528, and by his will desired to be 
buried by the side of his first wife in 
Warnham Church. By his first wife he 
left a son, Thomas, who inherited Warn- 
ham ; by his second a son, John, who 
became a member of the Inner Temple on 
July 9, 1522 (ib. 70 ; D. G. C. Elwes and 
C. J. Bobinson, 'Castles &c, of Western 
Sossez' [1879], p. 253). His will was 
proved in 1528 as of Warnham, Sussex, 



Hants, Kent, and Surrey (J. C. C. Smith, 

* Index,' i. 108). His estate in Surrey was 
at Tangley. See O. Manning, and W. Bray, 
' Hist, of Surrey ' (1809), ii. 109 ; Nicolas, 

• Test. Vet.' u. 660. 

' John Broke, perhaps the eldest son 
and heir-apparent of Thomas Broke, of 
Leighton, Cheshire, Esq., by Elizabeth, 
daughter of Hugh Starkey, of Oulton, of 
whom he was a feoffee in trust on October 
8, 12 Henry 8 (1520). He died before 1522 
(G. Ormerod^ *Hist. of Cheshire,' ed. T. 
Helsby [1882], iii. 458-4). The fourth son 
of Thomas Broke was Sir Richard Broke, 
Chief Baron of the Exchequer (* Diet. Nat. 
Biog.'). John Broke was a practising bar- 
rister in the reign of Henry 7 (E. Foss, 
' Lives of the Judges ' [1867], v. 20), and 
possibly the * — Brooke ' called serjeant 
in 1503. Ib. 15. . 

* See p. 121, n. 4. 

* Senior bailiff and receiver of Exeter 
in 1508, in which year two mayors and 
two bailiffs, of whom Guscott was one, 
died of the plague. Izacke, p. 104. 

' The twelfth year of Edward 4 began 
March 4, 1472, and the twenty-second 
ended March 3, 1488. 

' Blank in MS. 

' Keeper of Ludgate, where the tolls from 
the West were taken. See pp. 71, 73, 84. 

* Star Court still survives on the east 
side of Bread Street, a few doors north of 
Watling Street. 

•• Sic. 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V, LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 81 

the Counter ^^ of London said that men of Excestre were free, and 
ought to paye no thynge, and so the said John saith that in all the 
said tyme he paiede no Scavage ne any other thynge. 

John Bonyfent ^^ Citezen and inhabitant of the Cite of Excestre of 
the age of Ix yere and more sworne and examyned saith and deposith 
that in the Eynges daies that now is one martyn then beyng maier of 
London ^' he had xvj peces of lynnyn cloth Caried from Excestre to 



, " The Counter, or Compter, of Bread 
Street was on the west side of the street, 
and was a prison of the sheriffs, where also 
they and their officers kept their courts. 
It was a house belonging to the Gold- 
smiths' Company, who let it on lease to 
the person who farmed the prison. In the 
fourteenth century each sheriff kept his 
own compter. The consequence of this 

I was a competition for prisoners, from whom 
profit was extracted, which in 1378 resulted 
in a dispute between the sheriffs and the 
mayor and the expulsion of one of the 
sheriffs from office for attempting to get 
possession of a prisoner contrary to the 
mayor's orders (H. T. Biley, 'Memorials 
of London Ac' [1868], pp. 413, 417). In 
the Compter were lodged women of bad 
repute who transgressed the City's ordi- 
nances (ib. 458). It was also a place of 
detention for persons to be brought to trial 
before the mayor for like offences, who 
after condemnation were sent to Newgate 
(ib. 522, 595-6. Down to 1413 committals 
were specifically directed to one of the two 
sheriffs' compters (ib. 595), but in 1418 
the sheriffs seemed to have combined 
to maintain one prison known as ' the 
Compter ' (ib. 663, 676). It does not appear 
where this was, but as this evidence refers* 
back to the reign of Edward 4, it is not 
improbable that it was established in Breal 
Street between 1413 and 1418, where it 
remained until 1555, when it was removed 
to Wood Street. The curious story of its 
removal, owing to the legal inability of the 
Corporation to discharge its keeper, the 
lessee of the house, is told at length in 
J. Stow's ' Survey,' edited by J. Strype 
(6th ed. 1754), i. p. 690. 

'* John Bonyfent, Bonefant, or Bony- 
faunt, bailiff of Exeter in 1486, bailiff and 
receiver in 1495 and 1505 (K. Izacke, pp. 
94, 97, 105). A representative of the demo- 
cratic party in Exeter. For his usurpation 
of the office of Mayor of the Staple in that 
city and his deposition by the Privy Council, 
gee ' Select Cases in the Court of Requests,' 
Selden Soc. (1898), pp. Ixxv, Ixxvi, 3-6. 
Those events had occurred in 1498. • In 1482 
he is described as * Inholder ' of Exeter. 
MS. R. O., Exch. K. R. Mem. Roll. M. T. 



21 Ed. 4, m. XXXV. Cf. also p. 9, n. 22, 
supra. 

" Sir William Martin, Skinner, mayor 
in 1492, son of Walter Martin 'of the 
County of Hertford ' (J. Stow's ' Survey,' 
ii. p. 223). This was perhaps the Walter 
Martyn who in 4 Hen. 4 (1402-3) contri- 
buted to the building of the Church of 
Hexton, Herts (J. E. Cussans, ' Hist, of 
Hertfordshire [1874-8], Hundred of Hitchin, 
ii. 9). William Martyn was appointed by 
Edward 4 Controller of the Subsidy in the 
Poi-t of London and the ports and places 
adjacent on August 6, 1470 (Pat. Rolls, 
10 Ed. 4, p. 216). Presumably he was a 
Yorkist in politics, for in the following 
October, after the flight of Edward 4 to 
the Continent, he was displaced. Pat. Roll, 
Oct. 24, 49 Hen. 6 (1470). A month after 
Tewkesbury he was reinstated by Edward 4 
(June 12, 1471 ; Pat. Roll, 11 Ed. 4, p. 
269). He had probably rendered Edward 4 
active assistance, for on October 6, 1471, 
he received a dispensation from the statute 
against officers of the customs acting as 
merchants on freighting ships (Rot. Pari. 
V. 54 b; Statutes 20 Hen. 6, c. 5 [1442]). 
A grant further allowed him to ship wools 
or woolfells to the staple at Calais— i.e. for 
the Netherlands or ' by the Straits of 
Marroke — i.e. for the Italian market (Pat. 
Roll, 15 Ed. 4, p. 546). He was one of the 
sureties for Lord Hastynges, a prominent 
Yorkist peer, on his appointment as Keeper 
of the Royal Exchange in the Tower of 
London, February 3, 1471 (ib. 16 Ed. 4, p. 
20). He had ceased to be a controller, but 
was a collector of the subsidy in 1481 (ib. 
20 Ed. 4, p. 232). He was appointed one 
of a committee of lunacy for John Husey 
the elder, of Shapwike, Dorset, on December 
20, 1480. That he had a previous con- 
nexion with the county is evident from the 
fact that since April 16, 1478, he had been 
on its commission of the peace (ib. p. 558). 
He was nominated a commissioner of the 
subsidy from aliens in that county on 
April 27, 1483 (Pat. Roll, Ed. 5, p. 
353), a commission renewed after the ac- 
cession of Richard 3 (Aug. 1, 1483, Pat. 
Rolls, 1 Rich. 3, p. 398). He was sheriff 
of London in the same year (J. Stow, 



82 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



London by one William Najmow, Cariour of Excestre, the which cloth 
was takyn from the said Carriour by a servaunt of the Sherofes of 
London than be cause the said cloth was not broughten to Blakwel- 
hall ^* and by cause the said Carriour denyed to paie Scavage and 
Custome of hym asked for the same, and brought in to the Yelde hall ^^ 
of London and thare it rested vnto the tyme the said John came to 
London and thare complayned hym to the maier and Sheroflfes of 
London of his said Cloth so takyn and for the delyuerance of the same 



* Survey/ ii. p. 223), and as such a oommis- 
sioner to inquire into the estates and goods 
of those implicated in the insurreotion of 
the Duke of Buckingham in the previous 
autumn (Pat. Bolls, 1 Rich. 8, p. 393, 
December 10, 1483). He was part owner 
of a ship called the Eateryne of Fowey 
accused of an act of piracy upon the goods 
of an English merchant to Bordeaux in 
February of the same year. lb. 517. That 
he was trusted by Richard 8 is evident 
from his nomination as a commissioner 
of array for Dorset on May 1, 1484, 
in order to take measures against the ex- 
pected invasion of Henry Tudor, Earl of 
Richmond (Henry 7) (ib. 397), and again 
on December 8, following (ib. 488). But 
he probably deserted Richard, for ne was 
selected by the citizens of London to 
be one of the four aldermen to make 
arrangements for the entry of Henry 7 after 
Bosworth (August 31, 1485, W. Campbell, 

* Mat.' i. p. 6). From a mutilated document 
of January 2, 1486, it would appear that 
he had in Yiis custody the plate of John 
Howard, first Duke of Norfolk, kUled at 
Bosworth, which he delivered up to Henry 7 
(ib. p. 244). Perhaps as a reward for this 
he obtained either for himself or for a 
relative, William Martin, of the county of 
Dorset, a licence for one year, dated March 
9, 1486, to import 200 tons of foreign wine 
^b. 381, cf. J. Ghiirdner, * Letters and 
Pap.* R. 3 and Henry 7, i. p. 407, where 
William Martyne is among the gentlemen 
deputed to convey Katharine of Aragon 
from Sherborne to Shaftesbury on her 
journey to London in October 1501). But 
he was apparently involved in some trouble 
in 1488, for on March 10 he was compelled 
to take out a pardon for o£fcnces against 
the king's peace and to find security for 
good behaviour (W. Campbell, * Mat.' ii. p. 
273). He was master of the Skinners' 
Company in the same year (R. E. C. 
Waters, ' Genealogical Memoirs of the 
Family of Chester of Chicheley ' [1878], i. 6) 
He was Mayor of London in 1492-3, and 
was knighted by Henry 7 on January 6, 
1494 (W. C. Metcalfe, 'Book of Knights' 
[1885], p. 24). His will was proved in 



1504, he being then described as of * Pudel- 
ton, Dorset.' It appears that a family 
called St. Martin had held land here since 
the thirteenth century, being probably re- 
presented by Robert Martin in 5 Ed. 3 
(1331-32), and by Thomas Martin in 16 
Ed. 4 (1476-77) (J. Hutchins, *Hist. of 
Dorset ' [1803], ii. pp. 201, 202, 204), from 
which family we may perhaps infer his 
father to have sprung. It was a family of 
considerable distinction, and, as the quarter- 
ings on the monuments in Piddleton 
Church (engraved by Hutchins, p. 206) 
shew, of influential connexions. 

^* Blackwel Hall, an ancient house of 
the family of Basing, originally called Basing 
Hall. In the 36th Ed. 3 (1362-63) it be- 
longed to one Thomas Bakewell, from whom 
it was called Bakewell, afterwards corrupted 
into Blackwell Hall. It was transferred, in 
20 Rio. 2 (1396-97), to the mayor and cor- 
poration * ad opus communitatis,' and was 
constituted in the following year, in the 
mayoralty of Richard Whittington, a 
weekly market-place for woollen cloth. 
Here, by decree of the corporation in 1398, 
all cloth belonging to * foreigners,' that is, 
persons not free of the city, was to be 
brought under penalty of forfeiture (J. Stow, 

* Survey,' i. p. 579). The cloth-market was 
then fixed to be held from 11 a.m. on 
Thursdays to 11 a.m. on Saturdays (H. T. 
Riley, * Memorials of London (&c.,' p. 551), 
but at a later dale (1548) it appears that 

* strangers,' i.e. aliens, were restricted to 
purchasing on Tuesdays, i.e. after the City 
merchants had been served (A.cts of Privy 
Council, ed. P. R. Dasent, ii. p. 563). The 
pretext for this institution was to prevent 

* deceitful bargains' (Riley, I.e.), but the 
real reason was to prevent dealings between 
'foreigners.' This endeavour to concen- 
trate the trade in the hands of the London 
drapers was resisted by Parliament, which 
enacted in 1406 that drapers and cloth- 
sellers should be free to sell their cloths in 
gross as well to all the king's liege people 
as to the citizens of London, notwithstand- 
ing any franchise or liberty granted to the 
contrary.' 7 Hen. 4, c. 9. 

'^ GUd hall. 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V. LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 83 

shewed that the Gitezens and inhabitantes ofExcestre werreandbeas 
free as London is aswell of Scavage as of all other Gustome as by 
Ghartours thereof made and Gonfermyd from Kyng to Kynge as more 
playnly it doith appere, and so praied the said maier and his brethern 
and the Shereffes to haue his said cloth delyuered, or els he wolde 
Gomplayne hym further, and tharuppon he had good chere, and his 
cloth delyuered franke & free with owte any Scavage custome or other 
Gharge. 

Also the said John saith that in the xv yere of the Beigne of 
Kyng Henry the vij ^^ or nygh thare abowte he frightid a shippe of 
Gascoyn wyne vnto London and thare he made sale and delyuerance 
of the same franke and free and paied no Gustom ne other Gharge for 
the same oner to the seid Gite nor none was hym demaundid for the 
same. 

Robert Bonyfant ^^ Gitezen and inhabitant of the Gite of Excestre 
of the age of liiij yere sworne and examyned saith and deposith that 
he hath vsed to send lynnyn cloth and other ware from Excestre to 
London by the Garriours of Excestre from the xiiij yere of Kyng 
Edwarde the iiij*^ vnto the iiij*^ yere of the Kyng that nowe is,^* and 
syn all that tyme he paied no Scavage ne eny other Gustome for his 
said ware nor none was hym demaunded saue only by one Bichard 
Ghester*® and Thomas Bretyn^® the which the ij^® yere of Kyng 
Bicharde the iij'*'' ^^ than beyng Shereffes of London distreyned apece 
of lynnyn cloth of the said Bobert for Scavage be cause he wold not 
paie it when it was asked hym the which pece of cloth laie in the said 
Shereffes warde vnto suche tyme as it was delyuered to hym franke 
and free withowte any Scavage or other Gustome paied for the same 

" August 22, 1499-August 21, 1500. married, the surnames of his wives being 

" See Tayllour v. Att Well, A, p. 9 unknown. His will, dated May 25, 1483, 

n. 22. is printed at length in B. E. 0. Waters, 

" The fourteenth year of Edward 4 * (Genealogical Memoirs of the Family of 

began March 4, 1473, and the fourth year Chester of Chioheley * (1878), i. 5, and that 

of Henry 7 ended August 21, 1489. of his widow, Alice, a native of Stow. lb. 

*• Bichard Chester was the younger son p. 7. 
of Bobert Chester of Stow-on-the-Wold. *<> Thomas Bretyn also fell a victim to 

He was a skinner and merchant of the the sweating sickness in 1485, a year of 

Staple of Calais. His family was probably which it is recorded by Stow that there 

Lancastrian, for in July 1472, a year were * three sheriffs and three mayors this 

after the restoration of Edward 4, he and year (1484-85) by reason of the sweating 
his brother William took out a general . sickness ' (* Survey,' ii. p. 223). He was a 

pardon. In this he is described as of Stowe ironmonger and represented his company 

St. Edward, co. Qlouoester, chapman, alias at the coronation banquet of Bichard 8 on 

wolman, alias citizen and skinner of July 6, 1483 (J. Nicholl, 'Hist, of the 

London rPat. Boll, 12 Ed. 4, p. 347). He Ironmongers' Company ' [1861], p. 46). His 

became alderman and sheriff of London in will was proved in 1486, he being described 

1484, and died of the sweating sickness as of St. Mary-at-Hille London. J. C. C. 

early in 1485, his will being proved by his Smith, ' Index,* i. 78. 
widow on March 15, 1485. He was twice " June 26, 1484, to June 25, 1486. 

o 2 



84 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



by virtue of a decree tharupon made by my Lorde Cardinall late 
deceased than beyng Chaunceler of Englond *^ and my Lorde Priuy 
Seall ^ the v*** yere of the raigne of oure soueraygne Lorde Kyng 
Henry the vij***.** Also the said Eobert saith that in the xx" yere of 
Kynge Edwarde the iiij^ ^"^ came * to London with a Shippe called the 
Burnef of Darthmouth** wherof Thomas Greyston^® was owner 
charged with oseys ^ and Caprikkes ^^ wherof the said Robert had for 
his part xx" ton and by the freedom of Excestre he was discharged 
frank and free and paied no custome ne other charge for the same to 
the cite. 

Also the same Robert saith that he in the same yere send to 
London in the Anne of Fawy ij m* of Suger and ij barell of mete ^^ oyle 
and sold it to one Harry Benys '^ in Buklersberg in London and paied 
no thyng for Custom ne for none other Charge to the Cite Sauyng only 
a peny for a bill and so entred it in to the kynges Custome with owte 
any more charge Custome or demaund.^^ 

William Naynow Citezen and inhabitant of the Cite of Excestre of 
the age of Ivj yere sworne and exaymyned saith and deposeth that he 
vsed to cary Lynnyn cloth and other marchaundisez from Excestre to 
London by the space of xxxv yere last past and there was no Scavage, 
ne other Custom askid or demaundid of hym ne of any other that cam 
with hym for the same onto suche tyme as the said *^ Cotyn keper of 
Ludgate and his seruauntes demaunded and askid of the said William 
for euery pak ij d. and by cause the same William refused to paie the 
said ij d. for a pak the said Cotyn and his seruauntes ought ^ tymes 



" Cardinal Morton, Ohaneellor from 
March 6, 1487, to September 13, 1500. 
Lord Campbell, ' Lives ' (3rd ed. 1848), i. 
428. 

** Richard Foxe, Lord Privy Seal 1487- 
1516 ; bishop of Exeter, 1486 ; of Bath and 
Wells, 1492 ; of Durham, 1494 ; of Win- 
cheater, 1501-28. Le Neve, * Fasti * ; * Diet. 
Nat. Biog.' 

«« August 22, 1489-Augu8t 21, 1490. 

» March 4, 1480-March 3, 1481. 

*• Sic, • he ' omitted. 

'^ Perhaps so called from the plant ' the 
greate Pympinella or bumet' (Andrew 
Brunswyke, * Distyll. Waters ' [1527], c. j). 
There was also a dark brown cloth so 
named. See J. A. H. Murray, ' Eng. Diet.,' 
s.v. 

«• The port of Exeter. The customs of 
Exeter and Dartmouth were returned in 
one account. See the detailed customs 
accounts in G. Schanz, ' Englische Handels- 
politik,' ii. pp. 38, 50. 



^ There was a person of this name who 
was groom of the chamber to Edward 4, 
from whom he received a grant for life on 
September 1, 1476, of land in Kenford by 
Ken, CO. Devon, forfeited by attainder of 
Thomas Courteney, Earl of Devon, by Act 
of Parliament of November 4. 1 Ed. 4 
(1461) ; Pat. Rolls, 16 Ed. 4, p. 505. 

■• Osey, a kind of wine. J. O. Halliwell , 
* Arch. Diet.,* s.v. 

" Caperikis, a kind of wine. lb. 

« Sic for ' nete.* Neat-oil or neat-foot- 
oil was oil or grease extracted from cows* 
feet. Id. 

" Or 'Beuys.' 

" The first folio ends here. It is en- 
dorsed * Excestre contra vice comites Lon- 
donii pro scavagio.' 

" Blank in MS. 

»• A form of eight. See J. A. H. Mur- 
ray, ' Eng. Diet..' and J. 0. Halliwell, ' Arch. 
Diet.,* s.v. But it may be for 'oft.* Of. 
conversely on p. 128 * brofte * for ' brought.' 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V, LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 85 



pullid and fillid a downe the pakkes and at summe tyme wold opyn 
them and then amonge other founde monye the which the owners 
therof in no wise wolde were knowen for fere of thevis, and for that 
cause the said William saith he hath paied ij d. for a pak, And by 
cause this Custom afterwardes grewe gretter and gretter to the owners 
of the goodes, they caused the mater to be shewed vnto my Lorde 
priuy Seall and theruppon was no Scavage, ne other Custome 
demaundid hym for no maner of ware by the space of many yeres 
after, or nowe by the space of a iiij or v yeres past. 

Also the said William Naynowe saith furthermore that vppon a 
tyme whan one W. purches ^^ & welbek ^* was Shereflf of London he 
brought lynnyn cloth to the Starre in Bredd Strete in London whereof 
iiij fardell^^ ware one John Bonyfantes Gitezen and inhabitant of 
Excestre forsaid the which iiij fardelles the said William had solde to 
the wif of the Ton *^ in Themys Strete and tharuppon cam a seruaunt 
to the said Sherofes, and toke the said cloth from hym and Gomaundid 
hym to come be fore the Ghamberlayn of London ^^ and so he dede 
and the same Ghamberlayn askid hym why he solde any cloth or it 
brought to Blakwilhall and the said William answered and said that 



" William Purches, or Purohase, sheriff 
in 1492, the year of William Martyn's 
mayoralty, son of John Purchase of Gam- 
lingay, Cambridgeshire (J. Stow, * Survey,* 
ii. p. 223). He was a mercer. On October 7, 
14G3, a commission was issued to the earl 
of Warwick as warden of the Cinque Ports, 
the mayors, bailiffs, customers, &c. of the 
ports, one of the king's serjeants-at-arms, 
William Purchace, and two other persons to 
arrest certain merchants of Q^noa and bring 
them before the king in Chancery (Pat. 
Bolls, 3 Ed. 4, p. 303). He sold cloth of 
arras to Edward 4 in payment for which and 
for other debts, amounting in all to 465/., 
that king granted him on June 19, 1473, 
certain remissions of customs and subsidies 
for four years (lb. 13 Ed. 4, p. 389). He 
also obtained a grant of wardship of one 
Thomas Derham (December 13, 1473, ib. 
p. 416). He was a trustee of the will of 
llichard Sely (Cely), the younger, merchant 
of the Staple of Calais, who died June 5, 
1493, and whose letters have been published 
by the Camden Society (the Cely Papers, 
ed. by H. E. Maiden, 1900) (Inq. p.m. 
Hen. 7, i. 886). He was mayor in 1497 
(J. Stow, * Survey,' ii. p. 223). His will, 
in which he is styled alderman, of St. 
Laurence olde Jury, London, and Eltesley, 
Cambridge, was proved in 1503 (J. C. C. 
Smith, ' Index,' ii. p. 429). 

*• William Welbek, or Welbeck, haber- 
dasher, sheriff in the same year with W. 



Purches, son of Bichard Welbeck, of Ash- 
borne, Derbyshire (* Harl. Soc.,' xiv. 699). 

He married Jane ; d. December 26, 

1485 (inscription in Putney Church). O. 
Manning and W. Bray, * Hist, of Surrey ' 
(1814), iii. p. 292. His will was proved in 
1510 as of Allhallo^s, Barking, London, 
and Puttenhith, Surrey. J. C. C. Smith, 

* Index,' ii. p. 561. 

*^ Dim. of old French * farde,' a burden. 

* A bundle, a little pack, a parcel.' J. A. 
H. Murray, ' Eng. Diet.,' s.v. 

^ A method of nomenclature still 
common in Welsh. The sign was the 
barrel, called a ton or tun, containing 252 
gallons (»Bot. Pari.,' v. 30 b ; Stats. 
18 Hen. 6, c. 17 [1439]). Part of Thames 
Street was in the ward of Vintry, where 
was the hall of the Vintners' Company, in- 
corporated by Edward 3 as the wine-tonners 
or vintonners, and where the French wine 
merchants transacted business (J. Stow, 

* Survey ' [ed. 1633], p. 254). The coat 
granted to the Vintners' Company on 
June 17, 1447, was ' sable, a chevron be- 
tween three tuns argent' (T. Milboum, 
' The Vintners' Company ' [1888], p. 9). See 
further for this sign J. Larwood and J. C. 
Hotten, * Hist, of Signboards ' (3rd ed. 1866) 
p. 474. 

^' The chamberlain received the rents 
and revenues of the City. He had a special 
supervision of the sheriff's business. J. 
Stow (ed. J. Btrype, 6th ed. 1755), u. 475-6 



8G COUKT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

he had sold diuers tymes lynnyn cloth in his Inne and was neuer 
chalyngid therfore till nowe and that he knew not that any lynnyn 
cloth shuld be brought to the said hall and so the same Cloth rested 
in the Sheref warde till that the said John Bonyfant came to London 
for the delyuerance of the same. And when he came to London 
and Gomynyd with the said Sherof for the same he shewed the said 
Sherof suche mater for the discharge therof and so behaued hym that 
he had his said Cloth delyuered franke and free, with owte any 
Scavage Charge or other Custome to the said Sheroffes payed. 

John Wilkyns ^' Citezen and inhabitant of the Cite of Excestre of 
the age of Ix yere sworn and examyned saith and deposeth that he 
send lynnyn cloth from Excestre to London dyuers tymys by the 
Carrior of Excestre from the iiij''' yere of the raign of Kyng Henry 
the vij*^ till the x^^ yere of his reign than next insuyng *' and in all 
that tyme his ware was sold and delyuerd and no thyng askyd of hym 
for Scavage ne for eny other Custom nor none he payde. 

Mighell Sweteled Citezen and inhabitant of the Cite of Excestre of 
the age of Ix yere sworn and examyned saith and deposeth that he 
vsed to carry lynnyn cloth and other merchandisez from Excestre to 
London from the ij'* yere of the raign of Kyng Edward the iiij^^ vnto 
the iiij*** yere of the reign of Kyng Henry the vij*^ ** and in that tyme 
he caried lynnyn cloth of one Robert Smyth *^ and John Coshyll ^^ 
than Citezens and inhabitantes of Excestre forsaid and of many other 
from Excestre to London and thare sold and delyuerd moche of the 
same and in all that tyme he neuer paide Scavage ne other Custom 
nor none was of hym asked ne demaundid but only an halpeny for a 
horse comyng in wardes in to London and so for a nother halpeny 
goynge owte wardes from London.^^ 

John Butler ^^ Citezen and inhabitant of the Cite of Excestre of 
the age of lyj yere sworn and examyned saith that he hath vsed to 
send lynnyn cloth to London from Excestre by the Carriour of the 

" John Wilkyns, or Wilkin, steward and Exeter 1456, steward and senior bailiff 

bailiff of Exeter in 1495 (Izaoke, p. 97). 1458 (Izaoke, p. 84), ma^or of Exeter upon 

He is styled * John Wilkyn, alias Wylkyns, the oooasion of the visit of Edward 4 in 

of Exeter, marehaunt, alias shomaker, in a 1469. lb. 87. 

general pardon issued on February 10, 1482, ** Probably the same as John Ck>lshill. 

to a number of persons apparently con- See Tayllour v. Att Well, A, p. 9, n. 18. See 

nected with the customs of Exeter. Pat. also p. 51. 

Roll, 21 Ed. 4, p. 261. « The toll charged for horses entering 

** The fourth year of Henry 7 began and leaving the City appears to have 

August 22, 1488, and the tenth year ended varied according to the kind of merchandise 

August 21, 1495. they carried. See ' Lib. Albus,' pp. 232- 

" The second year of Edward 4 began 235. 

March 4, 1462, and the fourth year of *^ Will of John Bntteler, of Holy Trinity. 

Henry 7 ended August 21, 1489. Exeter, proved 1509. J. C. C. Smith, 

^ Bobert Smyth, receiver and bailiff of ' Index,* i. 98. 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V, LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 87 

same from the iij''*' yere of the reign of Kyng Henry the vij^ vnto the 
xiiijth jQj,Q Qf ijig raign ^^ than next insuyng, And in the first vij yere 
of the same xiiij yere he neuer paide Scavage ne other Custome for 
eny parcell of his ware ne none was hym demaundid vnto the xj or xij 
yere of the same kyng *® a seruaunt of one of the Sherovys of London 
distreyned hym some tymys by a pece of lynnyn cloth and some tymys 
by a hole pak by cause he wold not pay theym Scavage when it was 
askyd hym and by that menys he paide theym to haue his godes 

I delyuerd and by cohercion of distresse and none other wise Also the 
said John saith that in the xiiij*** yere of the reigne of Kyng Henry 
the vij^^ " or nygh there abowte he and other frightid a Shipp to 
London which was Ghargid with xvj ton of Swete wyne and l ton of 
frute and vppon the discharge therof the Sherofes seruamites and 
other distrayned there godes ^* and kept theym ^* vnto the tyme the 
said John put a gage *^ in to master Ysak of London " ys hand and 
he was suerte ouer to the Sheroffes for all suche Gustomys and dutes 
as they cowde lafull aske and so he discharged and sold his said ware 
and after that departid from London home and left ij m* lede ^ for a 
gage in the handes of the said master Ysak and so it lay in hys hand 
vnto the space of xij wekes and more that the said John came agayne 

. to London and than and thare he paide to master Ysak or he mought 
haue his saide gage v markes ^^ and more mony how moche he ys not 
well remembrid And so by that menys he hath paide Scavage and 
Custome &c. 

John Nordon ^"^ Gitezen and inhabitant of the said Gite of Excestre 
of the age of xxxj yere and more sworn and examyned saith that he 
hath vsed to send to London from Excestre by the Garriour of the 

** The third year of Henry 7 began infra, we learn that he was at first in the 

August 22, 1487, and the fourteenth year service of Sir Ralph (Jeosslyn or Joceline, 

ended August 21, 1499. mayor of London in 1476. His will was 

** The eleventh year of Henry 7 began proved as of * St. Dunstone in thest,* London, 

August 22, 1495, and the twelfth ended in 1619. J. C. C. Smith, ' Index,' i. 295. 

August 21, 1497. ^^ In 1499 lead was exceptionally cheap, 

»> August 22, 1498-Augnst 21, 1499. being 11. 195. the fother of 19^ owts. at Cam- 

" " InterUned. bridge (J. E. T. Rogers, »Hist. Ag. and 

^ Gkkge, vadium, signifies a pawn or Prices,' iv. p. 477). At this price the value of 

pledge, and is derived from the French 2,000 lb. of lead would be 3Z. 58. 10^. The 

gager, that is, pignori dare. J. Cowel, money paid for its redemption mdicates 

' Interpr.,' s.v. that the price was approximately the same 

^* William Ysak or Isaac, alderman of in London. 
London, sheriff 1488, probably one of the *« 8Z. 6s. Qd. 

family of Isaac or Isaack, of Westdown Ac, " John Nordon, steward and bailiff of 

Devonshire, of which the pedigree from Exeter, 1503, in which year he and the 

Simon Isaac, of Borriatt, in Atherington (d. former witness, John Guscote, his fellow- 

1570), is given in ' The Genealogist ' (1880), bailiff, and two mayors died of the plague, 

iv. 118 ; of. Harl. Soc., vi. 159. From the R. Izacke, p. 104. 
evidence of ' Mr. Izak ' given in I, p. 91, 



88 COURT OF THE ST.VR CHAMBER 

same lynnyn cloth and other marchandisez from the vij^^' yere of the 
raign of Kyng Henry the vij'*" vnto the xvj yere of his raign *® and in 
all that tyme he paide for his said ware no Scavage ne other Custom 
vnto the tyme that one Bradbury beyng Sherof of London ^^ which 
hauyng knowlich of the said John ys ware desired hym to haue the 
first sighte tharof and so they mought not accord of the prise and 
departyd and tharupon while the said John went in to London for 
other besynesse the said Bradbury fette ®" and toke away a pecc of 
cloth from Blakwyll hall whare the cloth was brought to sell and so 
kept the same by the space of a qarter of an yere and more and so 
the said John sold the residue of his ware and came to Excestre and 
after that whan he came to London agayne he asked the said pece of 
cloth of the said Bradbury and he ansuerid that he shuld haue it pay- 
ing his duty and than the said John askyd how moche it was and he 
said ix s. and tharupon the said John said that he wold pay no ix s. 
for he knew no suche duty and than in conclusion Bradbury bought 
the said pece of Cloth for xxvij s. wharof he paide to the said John 
xxiij s. and the residue he yet retayneth in his hand for Scavage and 
so by that menys the said John paide Scauage &c. Also the said 
John saith that he broughte more lynnyn Cloth to London with in 
the Space of a yere then next insuyng and other ware and whan he 
came to London the keper of the byllis ^^ wold not Suffer the Carriour 
to passe vnto the tyme that the same John put an hundred of mader ^^ 
in gage in to the handes of the said keper for iiij pakes of ware wharof 
iij were the said John Nordon and one was John Butlers and the 
which hundred of mader yet restith in the said kepers hand and thus 
by cohercion he hath been compellid to pay Scavage and Custome &c. 

Will Sylke. Per me Johannem Caryll. 
per me Johannem Brook. 

^ The seventh year of Henry 7 began den (ib. ii. p. 619). See Harl. Soo. xiii. 

August 22, 1491, and the sixteenth year pp. 28, 157. 
ended August 21, 1501. *" See Eynesham, Abbot of, v. Harecourt 

** Thomas Bradbury, mcrocr, sheriff and others. A, p. 141, n. 12. 
of London 1498, mayor 1509, 'son to '* Perhaps the chamberlain's clerk. In 

William Bradbury, of Braughin, in Hert- Liber Albus, i. 48 it is provided that this 

fordshire * (J. Stow, * Survey,* ed. J. Strype, official shall have half of the sum arising 

6th ed. 1755, ii. p. 224). He died January from the twelve pence taken for the entry 

9, 1509, during his term of office (Inq. p.m. * des billes de fraunchises ' (of writs of fran- 

2 Hen. 8, November 7 ; P. Morant, * Hist. chise). In 1, p. 02, infra, wc read of * the 

of Essex ' [1768], ii. 619 n.). His will was bill-taker of Ludgate.' 
proved in 1509 as of St. Stephen, Colman- •* The root of Rubia tiiictorum, much 

strete, London ; Brawkhyng, Herts and cultivated in the Middle Ages both for the 

Essex (J. C. C. Smith, * Index,' i. p. 74). dye extracted from it and for its supposed 

In this last county he held the manor of medicinal virtues in stanching bleedings 

Baads, or Bawds, in South Weald (Morant, (&c. (see J. Geraide, * The Herball ' [1G36J, 

i. p. 121), and that of Manewden or Manu- p. 1121). Madder does not appear to be 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V, LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 89 

G The Interogatorys to be proved of the part 
of the City of london. 

Item. Fyrst, Whether they haue be peasabelly possessid & seasid 
off Skavage off any off the Cytesaynys of the City off Exetter ^ oute of 
tyme of mynd,* yee or no. And yff they have be seasid there off whoo 
hytt was that ressevyd the seid skavage and of wham hytt was res- 
sevyd yff any suche were payyd and what they toke for a pake. 

Item. Another, Whether hytt was payyd by coarcyen & compul- 
cion ye or noo. And who were ShyrflSs of london when hytt was 
payd. 

Item. Another, Whether seche persons as have resseved the seid 
Skavage made any Bokkys off the ressevyng there off yee or no. And 
yff they dyd where thosse bokys be now and yn whosse kepyng they 
bee yff any seche bee. 

Item. Another Whether Thosse persons that have ressevyd the 
seid Skavage euer accountyd of the * * *^ * * * * [the]r * 

off ye or nay. And to who ys vse hytt was takyn. 



Memorandum that I marke John other wise callyd John Lumberd 
Testiffe and afferme as I will Tacke a oithe be fore any Jugge where 
as I shalbe callyd that I Gadered and receivid the Kynges ^ Custume 
callyd skavaige within the Cite of london aswell for the maire as the 
Vftcat. Shryves of the same Cite by the space of xj yeres, duryng all wich 
tyme every citezyn and inhabitaunte of the Cite of Excester bryngyng 
wares or merchaundises by water or by lande to the said Cite of 
london paide to me for the same wares and merchaundises to thuse 
and behoff of the saide mayre and Shryves the saide Custume callyd 
Skavage from tyme to tyme after the Eate of their said wares and 
merchaundises withoute interrupcion grugger ^ or denyer, And after 
my rememberaunce the citezyns and Inhabitauntes of the saide Cite 
of Excester vsually and yerly repairyng with wares and merchaundises 
to the saide Cite of london and paiyng Skavaige for the same as is 

mentioned in Rogers, * Hist. Agr. and Prioes ' loose paper belonging to this suit, sorted 

for this perioil. Some was imported from by mistake into the bundles of the Star 

Holland to Lynn (* Rot. Pari.' ii. 215 [1347]. Chamber docimients of Hen. 8. 

A complaint was made by the Commons in '^ See the plea in C, p. 75, supra. 

1415 that the dyers of Coventry monopolised * Complaint. Cf. * Paston Letters (1467), 

it and raised the price of dyeing. lb. iv. ii. 300 : ' 1 trost . . . that he uothyr huth 

75, a. ne shall have cause of grudger by my de- 

»-^ Interlmed. '' MS. torn. fault.' J. A. H. Murray, » English Diet.,* 

» S.C.P. Hen. 8, Bdle. 26, No. 66. A 8.v. 



90 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

aforsaide duryng the yeres of my saide occupacion receyvyng and 
gederyng of the saide Skavaige drwe to the nomber of xx*^* persones 
and a boue. In witnes of the trouthe of all the premisses forasmuch 
as I can not write I have put my marke and sign to thes presentes. 
And of thees ^ persones folowyng I have speciall rememberaunce of 
their names that is to say Richerd bedford * Nicholas Bedford mar- 
gery bedforde Water Humfrey. 

Indorsed. Deposicion John Lumbard. 



I. Tercio die mensis Junii Anno so. xvij"°.^ 

Markes John, otherwis callid John Lumbard now of Suthhampton 
^ where he hath dwelt vpon a iiij yeres past ^ and befor that dwelling in 
London more then xxx^^ winters sworne and Examyned of and vppon 
thinterrogatories ministred by the partie of the Citie of London ^ in 
the mater depending in the counsell betwixt the Citie of Excestre and 
thaim deposith and saith that he was Skavage gatherer in London, 
both to the maire and Shreves there, by the space of xj yeres aftre the 
begynnyng of the kinges Beigne ^ that now is, and he is wale remem- 
bred that by all thos yeres he receyvyd of ' diuers of ^ the Citiezyns of 
Excestre and there inhabiting, for frutes and wyned brought bi thaim 
to the Citie of London by water, the dutye of Skavage according as 
the Citie of London takith and haue takyn custumablie of othre 
strangers repayring to the same Citie, and also he receyvyd of asmany 
of the said Citie of Excestre as in thos xj yeres resorted to London 
by Land with ^ Canvas or crestcloth ^ and ' any * other ^ wares in 
likewis the dutie of Skavage, but howmich money he receyvid of euery 
of the said inhabitantes or what the namys be of thos of the said Citie 
of Excestre that he receyvid the said skavage of, he is not now 
remembred ^ butt thay paid it without grugge or contradiccion ^ or 

* This word has been struck through '"' Interlined. 

in the MS., but is included in the text as ' These are missing, 

required by the context. * August 22, 1485. 

* There seem to have been several per- * See Tayllour v. Att Well, A, p. 9, 
sons of this name. One of them had a n. 26. 

wife Margaret described as * widow, of ' There follow, struck through with the 

London,' in 1472. Pat. Bolls, 12 Ed. 4, pen, these words : * saving of Richard Bed- 

320. ford, Nicholas Bedford, Thomas Bedford 

' This mark is written not at the foot and Margerie Bedford, citizyns and inhabi- 

of the document but in a space left for it in tantis of Excestre, he of whom for canvas 

the last line but two, and with the lower & cloth and oUire lynnen with them 

part of the left side crossing the end of the brought in the ix*^ yere of the kynges reign 

word ' persones.' to BlakweU Hall he receyvid skavage and.* 

> 1602. 



HEWYT iVND OTHERS V. LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 91 

clayme to be quyfce of payment therof * and so dyd all othre of the said 
Gitie by the space of the said xj yeres in perell of this deponentes 
othe but how much money thay paid this deponent can not tell as he 
saith. 

^ Edward Crosfeld of London mercer of thage of xxx yere as he 
saith sworne and examyned vpon thinterrogatories ministred hi the 
Gitie of London in the mater of skavage depending betwix thaim and 
the Gitie of Excestre deposith and saith to the first of the said Inter- 
rogatories that he thinketh verelye that the Fremen Inhabitantes 
of the said Gitie of Excestre have paid the skavage for suche goodes 
as they haue brought to the said Gitie of London, for as he saith at 
suche time as he was deputid to gather the skavage in the Gitie of 
London there come a booke to his handes that was belonging to oone 
callid Leder, which long sithe died and whiles he lyved he was Skavage 
gatherer in London, and made that booke of the same ^ skavage ^ in 
whiche booke this deponent found oertaign parcelles of money takyn 
of ij men of Excestre callid Slugge ^ and Golshill * for skavage of 
certaigne thair goodes, Whether it were paid of their fre willes, or by 
constraynt of distresse takyn or not ^ or houlong it is goone that thai 
paid that skavage ^ this deponent can not tell as he saith. 

Item this deponent saith that he gathered the skavage in London 
in the daies of M"" Alwyn ^^ and M*" Bemyngton *^ maires there ; and 
he saith that of oone Staplehill of Excestre ^^ there was takyn skavage 

^ This is a separate folio from the pre- 625. He left three sons (ib.). I cannot 

ceding, but in the same handwriting. I find any authority but that of Stow shewing 

have therefore treated it as part of the that he was knighted, and Fabyan does not 

same document, viz. the depositions on give him the title, though he does to other 

behalf of the City of London. mayors and sheriffs. ' Chronicle,' p. 687. 

" John Slugge, or Slugg, steward and '* Sir William Bemyngton, or Bisnning- 

bailifF of Exeter 1482 (R. Izacke, p. 91), ton, fishmonger, mayor in 1500, 'son to 

receiver and senior bailiff 1494. Id. p. 97. Robert Bennyngton of Boston in Lincoln- 

* See F, p. 86, n. 46, supra. shire ' (J. Stow, l.s.c), also a fishmonger 

'» Sir Nicholas Alvrin, mercer, mayor in by trade (P. Thompson, * History of Boston ' 

1499, ' son to Richard Alwin of Spalding in [1856], p. 390). He was sheriff of London 

Lincolnshire * (J. Stow, ' Survey * [ed. 1755], in 1487, and, according to Stow, was made 

ii. p. 223). On May 4, 1480, * Nicholas Alwyn knight in the field by King Henry 7. This 

alias Halewyne alias Alewyne, merchant may have been at the battle of Stoke, fought 

of the Staple of Calais,' received, together on June 9, 1487, or it may have been 

with a number of other mercers and at Bosworth, where his colleague in the 

staplers, a general pardon of debts and shrievalty. Sir John Fenkell, was dubbed 

accounts due to the king (Pat. Bolls, (W. C. Metcalfe, ' Book of Knights,' p. 12). 

20 Ed. 4, p. 243). He was made a co- He is styled knight in an inquisition of 

feoffee, with Bishop Foxe, on April 1, March 17, 1488 (W. Campbell, ' Materials,' 

6 Hen. 7 (1491), of lands of one Sdchard ii. p. 164), the name there appearing as 

Cantelowe in Bedfordshire. He was sheriff Bemyngton. His will was proved in 1511 

of London in 1494. By his will (proved as of St. Mary Hill, London, and Newing- 

1518) he left benefactions to the parishes ton, Surrey (J. C. C. Smith, ' Index,' ii. 

of Spalding and Cowbit, Lincolnshire. See p. 442). 

Calendar of Wills in Court of Husting, >> Nicholas Staplehill, probably of the 

London, ed. B. B. Sharpo (1890), ii. 611, family of John Stapelhill, a prominent 



92 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the Svm of iiij or v s. this deponent is not remembred whether ; but 
this deponent saith that the said Staplehill was noo freman of 
Excestre and therefor he paid the said skavage without any stoppage, 
as the bill taker of Ludgate whos name this deponent is not now 
remembrid of as he saith ^ shewd him.^ He saith also that he 
bought ^ in the same yeres * of oone callid John ^^ Symons ^ of 
Excestre ^ asmich lynnencloth as answered to the svm of xl li. and the 
same John Sjinons desired this deponent to pay all suche duties ^^ 
and costes '^ as was due in the said Gitie of London for the said cloth ; 
and this deponent as he saith at his request paid all the costes,^ that 
is to sayHhe skavage^ and other costes;* how be it when^'^ this 
deponent askid allowaunce of the said John of the same Skavage ^ by 
him paid ' he refused to pay it and said that the fremen of Excestre 
ought noone to pay, and for a trouth noo j^ cowde this deponent gete 
of him for that vnto this day as he saith. 

Item this deponent saith also that in the daies of M*" Haws and 
stede Shreves of London ^® there was skavage askyd by oone James 
skavage gatherer then of oone Skrevener ^^ Freman of Excestre for 
cloth bi him brought to London by water, and he refusid to pay it, for 
that he was fre of Excestre howbe it he was compellid ^ bi the Shreves * 
to leve a pawn in there handes ^^ for the skavage if it were founde his 
dutie and that pledge was aftre that deliuerd vpon suretie that if it 
were found ^^ that fremen of excestre shold^' pay skavage that it shold 
be paid this deponent can nomore depose as in this behalf. 

M** Isak of London Alderman ^ sworne saith that vpon xxxyj* 
yeres past he was seruaunt to sir Rauff Geosslyn then maire of 
London ^^ and gatherd the skavage of London, and in that yere this 

Yorkist who received large grants in Devon- two words are the words ' and if tbys 

shire from Edward 4 soon after his acces- deponent,' struck through. 

sion in 14(51 (Pat. Rolls, 1 Ed. 4, pp. 64, »• See A, p. 71, nn. 5, 6, supra. 

227, 359). They were the estates of Sir »' See A, pp. 71, 73, supra. 

Baldwin Fulford, an attainted Lancastrian, *" * Of Mr. Hawes,' struck through. 

but were restored to his son. Sir Thomas "*** Interlined in substitution for 'due 

Fulford, in 1468 (Rot. Pari. v. 584, vi. 231). to,* struck through. 

Nicholas Staplehill was steward and bailiff *• See F, p. 87, n. 54, supra. 

of Exeter in 1517, in December of which '* Sir Banff, Balph, or Bandolph Geoss- 

year, and in the tenure of his office, he lyn, Jocelyn, or Joceline, draper, mayor of 

died (H. Izacke, p. 109). It appears from London in 1464 and 1476, was the third 

this document that he did not come of an son of Geoffrey Jocelyn, of Sawbridgeworth, 

Exeter family, though he perhaps founded Herts (d. 1470), by Katharine, daughter 

one, as the name occurs subsequently in and heir of Sir Thomas Bury. The family 

the city records. lb. pp. 124, 194. of Jocelyn traced its pedigree from the 

»• See Tayllour v. Att WeU, A, p. 8, Conquest (see R. Clutterbuck, ♦ Hist, of 

n. 21. Hertfordshire * [1827], iii. 203-6). Ralph 

•* Interlined in substitution for * for the Jocelyn was sheriff of London in 1468. 

said cloth,* struck through. He was knighted by Edward 4 on the 

*^ Interlined above this and the next expiration of his first term of office as 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V. LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 



93 



deponent receyvid of ij men of Excestre that oone of thaim was called 
Colshill,^^ that other Slugge,^^ for clothe that thay brought to London, 
^ the skavage at the gates '^ and as this deponent saith thay paid it with 
good will without any condiccion. 

Item he saith that now of late in the daies of M"" Purchs when he 
was maire of London,^^ there come into the port of London a Portun- 
gale shipp lade with frute belonging to diuers men inhabitantes of 
Excestre, and the said M** Purchas causid the said frute to be arestid 
for the skavage and then a seruaunt of oone John Butlers of Excestre 
calUd Cristofor ^^ which had the Rule of the said frute desired and 
praied this deponent to be suretie for the said skavage, and so this 
deponent was as he saith and after it was paid it amovnted to the 
Sum of vij or viij li. for xviij c.^*^ peces of euery pece j'^ ^ Item in 
like wis in the daies of M' Percevale ^^ there come a shipp lade with 



mayor in 1464 (J. E. C. Cussans, 'Hist, 
of Hertfordshire,' Hundred of Edwinstree 
[1872], p. 93). He was made K.B. on May 
2(5, 1465, the occasion of the coronation of 
Queen Elizabeth Wydeville (* Chronicle,' 
ed. by T. Hearne, reprinted in * Chronicles 
of the White Rose ' [1843J, p. 16). He was 
a Commissioner de Walliis et Fossatis, 
May 28, 1465 (Pat. Rolls, 6 Ed. 4, p. 461). 
On the following June 10 he was nomi- 
nated, with the Duke of Clarence and 
others, on a commission of oyer and ter- 
miner for London and Middlesex (ib. p. 488). 
He was appointed (March 16, 1466) justice 
for the merchants of Almain (ib. p. 529) ; 
that is, to try causes between them and the 
citizens, in accordance with the ancient 
privilege of the Hanse (see G. Schanz, 
*Englische Handelspolitik ' [1881], i. 178 
and n. 2). He was returned to Parliament 
for the City on April 13, 1467 (' Members 
of Pari.' i. p. 358). He was on the commis- 
sion of the peace for Hertfordshire in 1471 
and 1473 (Pat. Rolls, 11 and 13 Ed. 4, p. 
616). In 1480 he is described as of Aspenden, 
or Aspeden, Herts, * now of London, kt.,' in 
a list of inhabitants of the county worth 
more than 403. a year (Cussans, ' Hundred 
of Braughing ' [1870], p. 24. This manor 
he acquired in right of his second wife, 
Elizabeth, daughter and heir of William 
Barley, of Aldebury, Bucks, attainted in 
1495 as a supporter of Perkin Warbeck 
(Rot. Pari. vi. 504 a), but restored in 1503 
(ib. p. 554 a), It is impossible to reconcile 
the list of 1480, which represents him as 
living, with the statement in Clutterbuck, 
followed by Cussans, that he died on Octo- 
ber 25, 1478. Sir Ralph also held the 
manor of Bigghig, Essex, of the abbot of 
Stratford (P. Morant, 'Hist, of Essex' 



[1768], i. 281, citing Inq. 18 Hen. 4 [qu. 
Ed. 4]). There was a Ralph Josselyn who 
acquired the manor of Uphall, Braughing, 
in 1484 (Cussans, ' Hundred of Braughing,' 
p. 190). He had a great- nephew of the 
same name, resident at Canfield Magna, 
Essex (Clutterbuck, l.s.c. ; cf. S. P. Dom. 
Hen. 8, i. 1788). His first wife was Phi- 
lippa, daughter of Philip Malpas, by whom 
he left a son, Richard Jocelyn, of Fidlers, 
Essex (Clutterbuck, l.s.c.). 

" See F, p. 86, n. 46, supra. 

" Interlined in substitution for 'Ed- 
ward,' struck through. 

" See F, p. 85, n. 37, supra. 

** Interlined in substitution for ' xij o.,' 
struck through. 

«« 7Z. 10s. 

*' Sir John Perceval or Percival, mer- 
chant taylor, sheriff of London 1486, mayor 
1498, son to Roger Percival, of London, 
knighted in the field by Henry 7 (Stow, 
' Survey,' ii. 223), said to have been born 
near Macclesfield, Cheshire (Q. Ormerod, 
' Hist, of Cheshire ' [1882], iii. p. 742). Re- 
ceived a licence on February 15, 1487, to 
export 500 quarters of corn (W. Campbell, 
' Mat.' ii. p. 121), and on November 13, 1488, 
one to import 100 tons of wine from Gas- 
cony or Aquitaine (ib. p. 362). By a deed 
dated January 25, 1502, he founded the 
Macclesfield Grammar School (Ormerod, 
l.s.c). He presented the Merchant Tay- 
lors' Company with silver gilt plate (0. M. 
Clodo, 'Memorials of the Merchant Tay- 
lors ' [1875], p. 89), and his name frequently 
appears in their records (id.). By his wiU 
dated February 21, 1502, he left twelve 
houses in St. Mary Wolnoth and St. Mi- 
chael, Comhill, the profits, after some 
religious and charitable provisions, to go 



94 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

reasons " of the goodes of the said John Butler, John Frost and John 
Skryvaner of Excestre and other of the same, and the said Cristofor ^ 
had the Rule of the same,'® and thei were arestid for the skavage ; '• 
eftsounes this deponent was required to be suretie for ^ it bi the 
same Cristofor ^^ and so he was, and after it was paid. More can not 
this deponent say to thes Interrogatories. 

John Alayn of London haberdassher '' of thage of lij yere sworne 
saith that in the daies of M*^ Purohas and M^ Percevale when thei 
were maires of London he was deputid to gather the skavage in 
London, and he was paid bi the handes of M*" Isak the skavage of ij 
shippes that come to the port of London laden with Frute figges and 
Baisons which were belonging to diuers men inhabitantes of the Citie 
of Excestre of whos names he is not now remembrid as he saith but 
he hath a booke wherin he wrote bothe the names of the owners and 
his somes that he receyvid for the skavage. Moreouer he saith that 
he that had the rule of the said frute at bothe times was oontentid to 
pay the skavage with good will without any denyell and without any 
arest made vpon the said goodes for the same. 

Rowland Bird '^ Iremonger of the Gitie of London sworne saith 
that he hath knowen that the skavage hath be takyn ^aswelP of 
fremen of Excestre as of other places for suche goodes as thei have 
brought to the Citie of London bi the space of xxvj* yere & more and 
he hath knowen bi the bookes of Thomas Legge that was skavage 
gatherer ij or iij yere to which booke this deponent was previe, and 
also after that to a nother booke made bi oone Leder, in which 
bookes he saw that diuers inhabitantes of Excestre had payd the 
custome of skavage for suche thaire goodes as thai brought to London 
but he is not remembred of any more of them.* This deponent 
saith also that he hath ben skavage gatherer in London vpon v times 
and he is wele remembred that upon xviij yeres past ther were 
certaign peces of linnenclothes brought to London fro Excestre in the 

to the company. His will was proved on an obstacle to this identification, especially 

Jane 24, 1503 (Gal. of Wills, Ot. of Husting, as the former did not die till 1540 or 

ii. 606). He married Thomasina, widow of 1541. 

Gall and Bamaby, who also gave " Rowland Bird, or Birde, first appears 

plate to the company (Clode, p. 89) and as servant of Henry Nevill, of London, 

bequeathed money for religions ases ; will * iremonger,' who took oat a * safe conduct 

proved October 6, 1512 (Gal. of Gt. of and special protection,' perhaps on account 

Hasting, p. 618). of having been an adherent of Bichard 3, 

» Raisins. on December 27, 1485 (W. Campbell, • Mat.' 

** " Interlined in substitution for * in- i. 223), in which Rowland Birde was in- 

Btansid.' eluded. His will, as of St. Dunstan's-in-the- 

•* * Of ' struck through. East, London, and Godham, Kent, was 

« The John Allen, sherifif in 1618, proved in 1608. J. G. G. Smith, * Index,' i. 

mayor and a knight in 1525, is described 58. 

as a mercer, and the age of this witness is 



HEWYT AND OTHERS V. LONDON, MAYOR ETC. OF 95 

name of John Atwell ^ and Philip atwell ^ of which he demawnded 
the skavage and was wele and trulie paid of it without any agaign 
sayyng vpon his othe and he hath knowen diuers other of Excestre 
late distrayned for that thai refused to pay skavage for thaire goodes, 
as Gumbie, John Symons and John Skryvaner ^ all ^ of Excestre and 
thay lefte pledges in this deponentes own handes. What was doone 
farther in it this deponent can not tell more &c. 

Humfray Cornisshe of London sadler of thage of lij* yere sworne 
saith that he as skavage gatherer in London tooke and receyvid of 
the goodes of oone John Howell of Excestre for skavage of iiij hors 
lode of lyncloth iiij* in the monethe of Nouembre last past. He was 
paid with goode will of the said Howell or els of him that had the 
Bule of the goode. Other diuers fremen of Excestre sithe that time 
haue refusid to pay skavage wherfor thai haue be distrayned and left 
pledges vntill the mater be decided. He saith ^^ 



GORYNG V. NORTHUMBERLAND, EARL OF. 

A.* To the kyng oure soueraigne lorde 

1500 ? In his moste humble and lamentable wyse she with vnto youre 
Highnesse youre most Humble Subgiet and poure Oratoure John 
Goryng.^ That where ^ Erie of Northumberland claymythe 

and pretendythe to haue the warde and mariage of your saide Oratoure, 
For the discharge wherof your saide Oratoure hathe dyuers sufficient 
matirs to discharge hym ayenst the saide Erie, as the lerned Gounsell 
of the same your Oratoure clerely thynckyth, that notwithstandyng the 

** See Tayllour v. Att Well, A, p. 7, marriage of John (Joryng, the grandfather, 

n. 6. with Margaret, daughter of Ralph Radmyld 

** See ib. n. 6. and of Margaret, sister and co-heir of 

** These two are written as catchwords, Hugh lord Camois (id. pp. 61, 267), who 

and show that the deposition was not con- died in 1426 (id. p. 51). John Goryng of 

clnded. The rest is lost. Burton, the father, also died in 1495, in 

' S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 33. which year his will was proved (J. C. C. 

' John Goryng of Burkton or Burton, Smith, ' Index,* I. p. 232). The family was 

Sussex, son of John GK)ryng of Burton, by intimately associated with the earls of 

Joan, relict of Humphrey Hewster of Lon- Northumberland, as may be seen from 

don, and grandson of John Qoryng of numerous entries in the Inquisitions post 

Lancing, who died in 1495 (pedigree in Mortem of Henry 7, vol. i. Like the 

D. Q. 0. Elwes and 0. J. Bobinson, ' Castles Percies, they were probably Lancastrians. 

&c. of Western Sussex * [1879], p. 267 ; but cf . John Goryng, the grandfather, who executed 

pedigree in J. Dallaway, ' Rape of Arundel ' deeds in 1463 (ib. 468) and 1465 (ib. 

[1832], ii. 282). The family took its name 1078), and was knight of the shire for 

from Goring (Domesday, Goringes) in the Sussex in 1467 (' Members of Parliament,' 

rape of Arundel (Elwes, p. 57), and i. 359), was alive on June 13, 1495 

began to rise in importance in the reign of (Inq. p.m. Hen. 7, i. 1078). It was probably 

Henry 6 (ib.). It had been enriched by the John Goryng, his eon, who was appointed 



96 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



saide Erie bathe seased the body of your saide Oratoure ^ by reason 
of his pretendid title and kepith hym as his warde at his place at 
saynt Martyns yn london ^ and hym soo there bathe kepte more lyke 
a prisonar than a warde from Thassencion evyn last passed vnto this 
tyme Soo it is nowe gracious soueraigne lorde that yt bathe pleased 
the saide Erie to commytte the saide matir to be yn examynacion of 
ii of your Justices and the matir by them examyned and vnderstande 
to make reporte therof to Sir Beynold Bray knyght for your body,^ 
and he to directe and ordre bitwene them as hym shalle seme good, 



commissioner of musters for the expe- 
dition to Brittany on December 23, 1488 
(W. Campbell, * Materials,' ii. 387), and 
was upon the commission of the peace 
for the county in 1489 (ib. p. 478). The 
petitioner in this suit, John Goryng, the 
grandson, appears from his will to have 
been a member of Gray's Inn, since he had 
chambers there. His will is dated October 
16, 1520, and is printed in Nicolas, * Testa- 
menta Vetusta ' [1826], ii. 661. See also 
J. C. C. Smith, * Index,' i. 232. He mar- 
ried Constance, daughter and co-heir of 
Henry Dyke, by Elizabeth St. John, heir 
of the families of Dawtrey and St. John 
(Elwes and Robinson, p. 266). By her he 
left a son. Sir William Goryng, gentleman 
of the Privy Chamber to Ed. 6, who died 
March 18, 1553. He was the ancestor of the 
earls of Norwich of this family. Elwes, I.e. 
* Blank in MS. This was Henry Alger- 
non Percy, fifth earl. The earl's answer 
shows that at the time of this suit both 
the grandfather and father of the peti- 
tioner were dead. It must, therefore, 
have been after June 1495. Another 
retrospective limit of date is derived 
from the age of the earl. He was bom 
on January 14, 1478 (Inq. post Mortem, 
Hen. 7, i. 468), and must have been of 
age before he could claim a wardship, so 
that the case cannot be anterior to 1499. 
On the other hand, it must be earlier than 
January 29, 1503, the date of the death of 
Edward Storey, bishop of Chichester (1477- 
1503), one of the claimants to the ward- 
ship, and earlier than the summer of 1502, 
the date of the death of Thomas Wood, 
Chief Justice of the Common Pleas (E. Foss, 
* Lives of the Judges ' [1857], v. 81). For 
the life of this earl see * Diet. Nat. Biog.' 
and the Earl of Northumberland's House- 
hold Book, 1770. In Mich, term, 21 Hen. 
7 (1505), he pleaded guilty in the Common 
Pleas to abducting Elizabeth, daughter 
and heir of Sir John Hastyngs, and was 
fined 10,000^. by the Court of Common 
Pleas, which fine was afterwards remitted. 
See MS. B. O., Exch. E. K. Mem. Boll, 



M. T. 21 Hen. 7, f. ii. dors. 

* See Introduction, pp. cxiv, cxv, supra. 
^ This was not Northumberland House 

in the parish of St. Martin's-in-the-Fields, 
which was built by Henry Howard, earl of 
Northampton, about 1605 (H. B. Wheatley, 
* London' [1891], ii. 603). This was 
Northumberland House in the parish of St. 
Anne within the Liberty of St. Martin's-le- 
Grand. Stow says : * It belonged to Henry 
Percy. King Henry 4, in the 17th of his 
reign, gave this house, with the tenements * 
thereunto appertaining, to Queen Jane his 
wife, and then it was called her Wardrobe. 
It was afterwards a printing house, but now 
a tavern ' (* Survey ' [ed. 1633], p. 330 b). 
This Henry Percy was Hotspur, killed at 
the battle of Shrewsbury in 1403. This 
fifth earl of Northumberland was Hotspur's 
great-great-grandson. The house must 
have passed into the hands of Henry 4 by 
the attainder of Hotspur in January 1404 
(Bolls of Parlt. vi. 252). That attainder 
was reversed by Bichard 3 in 1483 (ib.), and 
the house must have reverted to the posses- 
sion of the Percys, a fact unknown to Stow. 

* Sub-treasurer of England and Chan- 
cellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in 1485 
(Campbell, ' Materials,' p. 89) ; knighted at 
the coronation of Henry 7 (October 30, 
1486J (W. C. Metcalfe, »Book of Knights,' 
p. 12). He is first mentioned as a knight for 
the King's Body in a grant dated July 18, 
1486 (Campbell, i. 506). He seems to 
have been frequently employed in quasi- 
judicial business (ib. 386), cf. * Paston 
Letters' (ed. J. Gairdner, 1876), iii. 332. 
He was High Steward of the University of 
Oxford, and held the University Courts 
(A. Wood, • Fasti Oxonienses ' [1790], being 
the appendix to the histories of the col- 
leges, <&c., pp. 71, 182). He sat, in his 
capacity of Privy Councillor, as a judge in 
the Court of Bequests in 1493-94 ('Se- 
lect Cases in the Court of Bequests,' 
Selden Society, 1898, pp. cii, civ, cvi, cviii). 
For other incidents of his career see ' Diet. 
Nat. Biog.' 



GORYNG V. NORTHUMBERLAND, EARL OF 97 

wherunto your saide Oratoure is agreed, and how be yt that youre 
saide Oratonre hathe offred sufficient surete to the saide Erie for his 
body to be forthe commyng boo that he may bryng evidences and proves 
to prove such matirs alledged by hym and his Counsell afore the saide 
Justices for his discharge of the premysses, the saide Erie woUe no 
such surete take but kepith youre saide Oratoure yn his saide place at 
his pleasure and delayeth and defarryth the saide matir and wolle not 
apply hym to haue the trouthe therof knowen but entendyth to defarre 
the matir tille the saide sir Beynolde Bray be departed ^ and than to 
kepe your saide Oratoure stille yn warde tille the terme of seynt 
michell next commyng or lengar, orelles by suche duresse to compelle 
hym to make Fyne with the saide Erie at his pleasure not oonly that 
but also hathe entred yn to the landes of youre saide Oratoure, and 
takyn the Bentes of his Farmours, and hathe seased and takyn parte 
of his goodes to his grete enpouerysshement,® And also Thomas Erie 
of Surre,^ Thomas lorde laware,^^ the Beuerent Fadir yn god, Edward 
Bisshopp of Chichester,^^ and dyuers other clayme yn lyke wise your 
saide Oratoure to be warde to them, and the saide Thomas Erie of 
Surre hathe takyn a suytte ayenst hym And forasmoche as your 
saide Oratoure is yn suche a Warde and kepyng, howe be yt that he 
be of sufficient age to answer and defende the saide suyttes ^^ and of 
right ought to be discharged of them, he neyther can ne may defende 
them accordyng to his right, by cause of the saide reteynyng yn 
warde, and boo he is vtterly vndone remedylesse ^' onlesse that your 

' This may possibly afford us some clue '" Thomas West, K.B., eighth baron de 
to the date of the petition. Both Sir R. la Warr, d. 1525. See ' Diet. Nat. Biog.' 
Bray and the King are about to leave " Edward Storey, bishop 1477-1503. 
London, the King upon a ' progress and See * Diet. Nat. Biog.' The see had nume- 
journey ' (p. 96). At the beginning of May rous manors and fifteen manor-houses or 
1500 Henry 7, to avoid the plague in castles in Sussex, but it does not appear in 
London, set out for Calais, where he respect of which of them the bishop ad- 
remained until the end of June (Hall, vanced this claim. For a list of them see 
* Chronicle ' [ed. 1809], p. 491, on which Elwes and Bobinson, p. 4 n. 
alleged connexion between the plague ■'' The writ de custodia terrse et hseredis 
(sweating sickness) and the journey see lieth where the tenant holdeth of his lord 
W. Busch, Konig Heinrich 7 (1892), by knight's service and dieth in his 
p. 370). The words 'and journey' may homage and a stranger entereth into the 
be mere pleonasm, but they may also land and taketh the body of the heir * (Fitz- 
indicate that something more than an herbert, * Nat. Brev.' [9th ed., 1794], ii. 139). 
ordinary progress was in contemplation. * And it appeareth by the register that the 
It is apparent from the language of the guardian in socage shall have the writ of 
petitioner that the return of Bray, who, as right of ward of the heir alone, or of the 
knight for the Body, would naturally ac- land alone, or of both.' Ibid, 
company the King, was not expected to be " This allegation agrees with the plea 
speedy. in the replication that John Goryng, the 

" See Introd., pp. cxvi, cxvii. grandfather, did not hold by knight service. 

* Thomas Howard, afterwards duke of If the petitioner were a tenant by knight 

Norfolk, b. 1443, d. 1524. See * Diet, of service, his infancy would not cease till he 

Nat. Biog.' was twenty-one years of age. Although in 



98 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

gracious pite and comforte to hym be shewed yn this bihalve. Wherfor 
that yt may please youre Highnesse of youre moste habundant grace, 
thise premyssis considered,^* to do calle in examinacion before you and 
your moost honnourable counseill at suche day and place as it shal 
please your grace to appoincte in this your progresse and journey ^ the 
said matier, And that your said Oratoure may be forth commyng 
vpon suffisaunt suretie to be made vnto the said Erl of Northumber- 
land to poursue his defens and discharge in the premisses and ther- 
upon to abide suche furthre direccion as to youre said Hyghnesse and 
your said counsaill shalbe thought most according to your lawes ryght 
and good conscience. And he shal pray contynuelly for your most 
noble and Boyal estate. 



B. This is the Aunswere of Harry ^ Erie of Northumberland to 
the bill of complaynt of John Goryng. 

The seid Erie seyth that trew it is that he hath claymed and also 
seased the seid John Goryng for his warde as lawfuU is for him for 
that oone John Goryng Grauntfader to this Gomplaynaunt held of 
the seid Erie as of his honour of Petworth within the Shere of Sussex 

Braoton's day the law allowed infants to Hargrave and Butler's note to Coke * upon 
sue and be sued (Bracton, 253 b ; of. P. Littleton,' 135 b. The punishment of the 
and M. * Hist, of English Law,' ii. 438 offending guardian was loss of the wardship 
fol.)t Fitzherbert lays it down that at and of the custody of the land aliened 
common law infants could neither sue nor (Stat. cit. Gf. Coke, Inst. ii. 260). In this 
defend, except by guardian (N. B. 27). The case, if the earl claimed plaintiff as his ward 
plaintiff here asserts that he was of age to and prevented his taking legal action for 
defend. He must, therefore, have claimed the possession of his land, semble he was 
to be an heir in socage, who at fourteen was constructively within the Statute of West- 
out of ward. Coke * upon Littleton,' 78 b, minster I. Sed qu. 

cf. Bracton, f. 86 b. If the plaintiff was of legal age as a 

In the thirteenth century the practice tenant in socage, he was not within the 

of retaining the heir who was under age in protection of the Statute of Westminster I. 

custody, and enfeofiSng others of his land, But he had a remedy in the action for false 

was so common that the Statute of West- imprisonment, a form of action of trespass 

minster I. (c. 48) was passed in 1275 to (Blackstone, ' Comment.* bk. v. ch. viii.). 

suppress it. By that statute it was pro- 'Every confinement of the person is an 

vided that where a guardian, or any chief imprisonment, whether it be in a common 

lord, detained an infant in ward and alien- prison, or in a private house,' &c. See 

ated his land, anyone might sue out an Fitzh., N. B. f. 86, 88, sub Writ of Trespass. 

assize of novel disseisin as prochein amy. >* From this point to the end in an- 

The Statute of Westminster the Second other ink, apparently written over an 

extended this to actions in all cases where erasure. 

infants were eloigned (si hujusmodi minores ' This being one of the rare cases of a 
elongati sunt). A constructive eloign- double Christian name in the fifteenth 
ment seems to have been inferred for the century, it is to be noted that only one is 
benefit of infants, so that Fitzherbert and used in this formal pleading. For the sub- 
Coke lay down the proposition that an infant ject of double Christian names in the 
shall sue by prochein amy. A learned Middle Ages, see ' Notes and Queries,' 9th 
discussion as to whether they intended to ser.vi. 217, and •Furnival'slnn, Principal of, 
exclude suit by guardian may be found in v. Johnson,' p. 238, n. 9 ; also p. 206, n. 37. 



GORYNG V. NORTHUMBERLAND, EARL OF 



99 



dyuers parcellis of grounde bi knyght seruice^ and died in his homage' 
after whoos dethe alia the seid parcellis discendid to the said 
complaynaunt as Cosyn * and haira to the seid John Goryng that is to 
say son of John son of the seid John the Grauntfader. Withowt that 
the said Complaynaunt hath any mater of trewth which will avoide 
the seid wardship "^ And without that auer the said Erie sit he the 
first seasour of the seid John Goryng kept him otherwise than bi the 
lawe of the land a ward for his sauffe kepyng moght lawfully be 
kept ^ And where the seid Complaynant seiyth that thexamynacion 
of the seid mater was comytted to ij of the Kynges Justicez which 
was m*" Wood ^ and M'" Tremaile " and thei to make Report to m*" 
Bray Therunto the seid Erie seith That according therunto the 
Councell of the seid Erie with all diligence to theym possible Attended 
uppon the seid ij Justicez and before them had dyuers & meny 
metinges and communications at all the which and euery of them the 
seid Complaynaunt was there with his Councell personally him self 



* * Tenure by homage, fealty, and escu- 
age is to hold by knight's service (per ser- 
vice de chivaler), and it draweth to it ward 
(gard) manage and relief e,' Littleton, § 103. 
A knight's fee consisted of at least twelve 
ploughlands, a quantity so variable as to 
amount to any area between 680 and 1440 
acres. See Coke * upon Littleton,' 69 a. See 
further id. Inst. ii. 697, where Coke dis- 
cusses the values set upon a knight's fee at 
various times. The smallest parcel of land 
might be held by knight service. 

' Homage did not necessarily imply 
tenure by knight service. Littleton says of 
it : ' Homage is the most honorable service 
and most humble service of reverence that 
a frank-tenant may do his lord' (§ 85). 
Neither did the homage due to the earl 
necessarily exclude the homage that might 
be due to other lords for other lands. 
Bracton (f. 79 b) says : ' Item poterit quis 
de pluribus tencmentis plura facere homa- 
gia, vni domino simul vel successive, vel 
diuersis & pluribus, et sic poterunt plures 
domini plura capere homagia ratione 
plurium tenementorum dum tamen unus 
ex pluribus dominus sit praecipuus & 
legitimus quia feoffator primus & propter 
primum feoffamentum & capitale. Et talis 
semper habebit maritagium heredum, 
propter primum feoffamentum.' But the 
Leges Henrici Primi, c. 43, § 6, solve the 
question on a different principle. *Ei 
magis obnoxius est et ejus residens esse 
debet cujus legiusest ' (Scbmid, ^Gesetze der 
Angelsachsen '). Similarly the ' modus faci- 
endi homagium ' in Statutes of the Bealm, 
i. 227, of uncertain date, gives the uncon- 
ditional form of homage as tlie due of the 



lord, ' de qi il tient son chief mesuage.' It 
is obvious that Bracton's rule belongs to 
a date when written evidences were more 
readily available to determine the primum 
feoffamentum. The other lords only received 
a conditioned homage * sauve le foi que jeo 
doy a nostre seigneur le Koi & a mes auters 
Seigneurages.' The principal messuage of 
the Goryngs appears to have been at 
Burton or Bodecton. See Introd., p. oxiz. 

* * In legal language formerly often 
applied to the next of kin or the person to 
whom one is next of kin, including direct 
ancestors and descendants more remote 
than parents and children. Here taken as 
= Latin consanguineus.' J. A. H. Murray, 
Engl. Diet. s. v., where see examples. 

^ See A, p. 97, n. 13, supra. 

* See Introd., p. cxv, supra. Cf. Brao- 
ton, f . 87 : ' Haeredes autem quamdiu 
fuerint in oustodia pro quantitate heredi- 
tatis honorifice exhibebunt ' (i.e. domini 
capitales). Except on the score of deten- 
tion, there is no distinct allegation to the 
contrary made by the plaintifif against the 
earl. 

' Thomas Wood, appointed a judge of 
the Court of Common Pleas, November 24, 
1495 ; promoted to be Chief Justice of the 
same court, October 28, 1500, * and presided 
there till his death, which occurred within 
two years, in the vacation between Trinity 
and Michaelmas Terms, 1502.' See E. Foss, 
* Judges of England ' (1867), i. 80. 

" Thomas Tremaile or Tremayle. * His 
promotion as a justice of the King's Bench 
took place on July 16, 1488, and there is 
evidence in Eeilwey's Reports of his acting 
as late as Hilary Term, 1507,' id. ib. p. 77. 

u 2 



100 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

before which Justicez the whole matyr of both the parties Was 
playnely declared And when the seid Complaynaunt perceived hi 
the seid ij Justices that thei wold haue made report to m^ Bray of 
the seid matyr what thei thought resonable in the same then he 
labored the kinges grace to bring hit bifore him and his Counsell in so 
moche that the seid Complaynaunt seid openly to diuers credibill 
persones when the seid Justicez had the mater in examynacion that 
he wold finde a prick® wherby the hondes of the seid Justices shuld 
be closed as in that matir And not withstandyng that the seid Erie 
is heneretabill ^^ to the Gomen law of the lond and this is matir which 
is clerely determynabill hi the same ^* for eny thing that is conteyned 
J within the seid bill of complaint yet the seid Erie is well aggreabill 
that the seid matyr shall be examyned hi the kinges moste honorable 
Councell so that it may be doone withouten delay For the seid 
Complaynaunt as he seith him self shalbe at his full age at 
Mighelmasse next comyng And as to that the seid Complaynaunt 
desired to go vnder suerte the seid Erie seith as his lerned Councell 
hath shewid him thei haue neither redde ne herd that a Ward shuld 
go vnder suertie ^^ Wherfor as in that bihalfe the seid Erie trustith 
he shal not be dealed with otherwise then other of the kinges subiectes 
haue been in cases lyke in tyme past. And as to the entre in to the 
londes of the seid complaynaunt and taking of the Rentes and his 
goodes therunto the seid Erie saieth that after the deth of the seid 
John Goryng the grauntfadre the seid Erie entred in to all the londes 
which the seid John Goryng the Grauntfadre held of the seid Erie by 
knyght seruice the tyme of his deth by cawse the said Complaynaunt 
his next heire was then and yet is within thage of xxj yerys And at 
the next daies of payment toke the Rentes of all the seid londes of such 
persons as were aggreabill to hold the seid londes of the seid Erie ^^ 

* The word is written * prik ' with a writ de custodia terrsB et hasredis which 

mark of abbreviation over it. In the ' lieth where the tenant holdith of his lord 

replication it appears as ' prink,' ' priuk/ or by knight's service and dieth in his 

* pruik,' probably the first ; bat I find no homage and a stranger entereth into the 

authority for it. ' Prick ' means a skewer, land and taketh the body of the heir ; the 

and I incline to think that is the meaning lord of whom he holdeth * the land shall 

here, and that the plaintiff boasts that he have a writ of custodia terrte et hsredis, 

would fasten up the justices' hands as a &o, (Fitzh. N. B. [ed. 1794], ii. 139). * It 

skewer trusses a fowl. appeareth by the register that the guardian 

'** Inheritable, i.e. entitled to enjoy as in socage shall have the writ of right of 

his birthright ; cf. W. H. Turner, ' Select ward of the heir alone, or of the land alone, 

Reo. Oxford ' (1880), 38 : * Put from the or of both.' lb. 

benefite of the lawes of the Bealme where- " See Introd., p. cxv. 

unto they be inheritable ' (1523). J. A. H. " In his replication the plaintiff sug- 

Murray, * New Eng. Diet.' s.v. gests rather than states that some of the 

>* That is, another of the claimants to tenants were evicted. See Introd., p. cxvii. 
wardship in knight service could have a 



GORYNG v. NORTHUMBERLAND, EARL OF 101 

as londes beyng in his Warde And also the seid John Goryng the 
Grauntfader tyme of his deth held of the seid Erie viij seuerell 
porcions of lond For euerych of the which the seid Erie owght to 
haue by deth of his tenaunt a mownter and a heryott ^'^ as it playnly 
apperith by the Custumarys of the seid Honour which haue been shewid 
to the seid ij Justices and are redy to be shewid to youre good 
lordshippis when ye will comaund And so for part of the seid 
heriottes and mownters the seid Erie toke yj Oxen and a hors all 
which were the goodes and catellys of the seid John Goryng the 
Grauntfader the tyme of his deth with owt that the seid Erie toke eny 
Rentes or goodes of the seid Complaynauntes or entred in to eny of 
his londes in any other maner then by the seid Erie is allegged And 
where the seid complaynaunt alleggeth that he is claymed to be in 
ward by dyuers other persons as by the Erie of Surrey the lord 
lawarre and the buyshop of Chichester therto the seid Erie seith that 
that is oone of the specyell cawses for the which he hath kept him in 
his owen possession for that none of thoes rehercid lordes shuld be 
possessid of hym ^-^ And put the seid Erie to his Accyon ^^ And 
moreouer where it is alleggid by the seid Complaynaunt in his 
seducyous ^^* & sclaunderous bill that the seid Erie did kepe hym in dures 
to thentent he shuld be compellid to make fyne with the seid Erie at 
his plesour Therto the seid Erie saith that he hath at all tymes 
aunsured bothe by hymself and by his Councell when the seid 
Complaynaunt offered the seid Erie at London xx" for a pleasour that 
he wold not take oone peny of him Except his right were tryed good 
Wherfore hit apperyth that the seid bill is vntrewe and made oonly to 
the grettist disclaunder of the seid Erie Wherfor and in consideration 
that the seid Erie is oone of the Nobyll Perys of this realme he 
besechith your good lordshippis that the seid Complaynaunt for his 
seid sclawnderous bill may be punysshed in example of other 
according to the moste honorabill lawes and statutes in like cases 

'* The word * mownter' appears to be ableby thegns(Schmid,*Gesetzeder Angel- 

fixal Keydfifpoy, and suggests a corruption sachsen [2nd ed. 1858], p. 309). Bracton 

of * mortuarium ' or * mortuary/ in associa- says : ' Heriettum . . . scilicet ubi tenens, 

tion with which the heriot is found. ' De- liber vcl servus, in morte sua respicit do- 

bentur domino (i.e. manerii) nominibus minum suum de quo tenuerit, respicit de 

heriettas & niortuarii duae vaccae ' (W. Ken- meliori auerio sue vel de s«cundo meli- 

nett, * Paroch. Ant.' ii. 101). The earl's ori secundum diversam looorum consuetu- 

statement of defence shows that the heriot dinem.' He adds that it is a payment 

claimed was not in respect of the land held ' magis de gratia quam de jure ' (f . 86). For 

by knight service, but of other land. As a the dififerent meanings of heriot, see P. 

matter of fact, heriots were generally paid and M. * Hist. Eng. Law,' i. 298. 
by villeins rather than by free tenants, a '^ See Introd., p. cxiv. 

point on which Britton (ii. 51) and Fleta "^ Seditious. Lat. seditiosus, quarrel- 

(p. 212) insist. But the Laws of Canute some, see p. 140, n. 11. 
(o. 71) show that originally heriot was pay- 



102 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



ordeyned and prouyded.^^ All which maters the seid Erie is redy to 
prove as youre moste honerabill Lordshippis shall thynk most 
reasonabyll. 



c. This is the Replicacion of John Goryng to thanswere of the 
seid Erie of Northumberland. 

The seid John saith in all thinges as he said in his firste bill of 
Complaint, And where as the seid Erie saith in his seid Awnswere 
that oone John Goryng grauntefadere to the seid John was seased 
of certen londes at tyme of his deth holden of his honour of Fetworth 
in the Countie of Sussex bi knyghtes seruice and died in his homage 



*' The earl invokes the statutes 
2 Bic. 2, St. 1, c. 5 (1378) and 12 Bio. 2, 
0. 11 ri388). Of these the first was an Act 
amenaing the Statute of Westminster I. 
(1275) 0. 34, by which imprisonment was 
made the penalty of the dissemination of 
tales in slander of the great men of the realm 
until the original inventor of the slanders 
should be produced (* jesques a tant que il eit 
trove en court celuy dont la parol serra 
move *). This was re-enacted by the statute 
of 1878. Neither of these statutes appoints 
any punishment for the original deviser of 
the tales. According to Coke, * he is left to 
the common law to be punished by fine and 
imprisonment,* 2 Inst. 228. The Act 
of 1388 gave a statutory sanction to much 
of the power exercised by the King's 
Ck)uncil in the provision that the inventor 
as well as the spreader of false news ' soit 
punis par advys du conseill.' The offence 
was known as Scandalum Magnatum. The 
earl was therefore within his statutory 
right, if this were a case before the Star 
Chamber as a court of the King's Council, 
in asking for punishment of the offender. 
Sed quaere, if this were a case before the 
Star Chamber, and the Star Chamber were 
a Court originating with the statute * Pro 
Camera Stellata.' The charge was, in 
brief, false imprisonment with intent to ex- 
tort money. Coke, after stating that a man 
would be exempt from the penalties of the 
statutes who charged felony, even though 
falsely, against a peer in the courts of Com- 
mon Law, on the ground that ' men should 
not be deterred to take their remedy,' adds 
* and so it is, if in the Star Chamber a 
peere of the realme be charged with forgery, 
perjury, or the like ; but if in the bill the 
plaintiff chargeth him with felony, or any 
other offence not examinable in that court, 
that slander is within these statutes, for 
that the plaintiff pursueth not his charge in 



any judiciall course, seeing the court hath 
no jurisdiction of the same, and so hath it 
been adjudged,' Inst. ii. 228. Forgery was 
only a misdemeanour at Common Law, 
J. F. Stephen, * Hist, of the Criminal Law ' 
(1883), iii. 180. Perjury was merely a 
spiritual offence (ib. p. 243), but was held to 
be punishable by the Star Chamber under 
the Act ' Pro Camera Stellata ' (3 Hen. 7, 
c. 1), which incidenttUly mentions the in- 
crease of perjuries (Stephen, iii. 244). The 
Star Chamber Act recites the evils arising 
from maintenance and other misde- 
meanours, with none of which this case is 
concerned, as being ' to the encres of mur- 
dres roberies perjuries and unsuerties of 
all men lyvyng and losses of their londes 
and goodes.' Stephen considers that the 
Star Chamber held this incidental mention 
as authorising it to punish perjury, * though 
the words seem not to bear that interpre- 
tation.' He adds : * It certainly did not 
authorise them (the Court) to punish mur- 
ders or robberies.' Nor, I may add, forgeries. 
I incline to the view that the Court of the 
Star Chamber arrogated the power to punish 
perjury, not as one belonging to it by the 
statute, but in virtue of being a court of the 
King's Council, which seemed to regard as 
one of its principal functions the provision of 
remedies in supplement of the common or 
statute law, where those laws were defective. 
I In the case of Devonport v. Sympson, Cro. 
Eliz. 520, being an action for perjury, 
Walmsley, Beaumond and Owen, J. J., were 
of opinion that the action did not lie, ' for 
at the common law there was not any course 
in law to punish perjury ; but yet before the 
statute of 3 Hen. 7, c. 1, the King's Council 
used to assemble and punish such perjuries 
at their discretion.' It is observable, too, 
that the pleadings before the Star Chamber 
frequently declare that the plaintiff has no 
remedy provided by law. It must have 



GOKYNG V. NORTHUMBERLAND, EARL OF 103 

Ther unto the same John Goryng saith by protestacion ^ that he 
knowit not that the seid John ^Goryng his^ Grauntfadre held anylondes 
of the seid Erie within the seid Countie of Sussex bi knyghtes seruice 
nor no lawfuU prove was made therof on the behalue of the seid Erie 
before the kinges most honorable Counsell nor ellis where nor yet that 
the seid John Goryng his grauntfadre died seased of any such londes 
in the homage of the seid Erie like as the said Erie pretendith and 
surmytteth in his said awnswere as the seid John now repliant 
thinketh he haith suflBciently shewed and proved by clere evidences 
aswell before the said Kinges Counsell as in other places where the matyr 
hertofore hath been in examinacion. And forthermore where the seid 
Erie saith that after the matyr was commytted to the examynation of m^ 
Tremayle and m*^ Woode ^ ij of the kinges Justicez his Counsell did 
theire best diligence to have the matyr bifore thaim herd to thentent 
the same Justicez shuld make Report to m*" Bray knyght for the 
Kinges moste honorabill body And that the seid John perceyving 
that the seid ij Justicez wold haue made Eeport to the seid m"" Bray 
as thaym thought resonabill in the cause he labored the Matyr to be 
removed before the king and his Councell The same John saith that 
if the seid Erles Councell wold haue made no delayes but haue shewed 
his title before the said Justicez so that thei myght haue made 
Eeaport to m' Bray before his departure from London ^ he wold nevir 

been as a court of the King's Oouncil that tried cases of forgery, e.g. Kendall's case, 

it claimed, as Coke implies, to deal with 3 July, 10 Hen. 7 (1494) (id. p. 78). Itisdoubt- 

Scandalum Magnatum. Among the mis- ful, therefore, whether the earl could allege 

chiefs struck at by the Star Chamber Act, Scandalum Magnatum against the plaintiff, 

false imprisonment with intent to extort though the replication indicates that the 

money is not included. If, therefore, this plaintiff's counsel were uncertain of their 

were a Star Chamber case, and the Star ground. Hudson notices the great increase 

Chamber were confined strictly to its statu- in this class of suit in the Star Chamber in 

tory jurisdiction, that Court could not, his day, and says :' All actions de scandalis 

but the Council or the Common Law magnatum are as properly to be sued in the 

Courts could, punish a Scandalum Mag- Star Chamber as in any other court * (' Of 

natum alleging false imprisonment, for the Court of Star Chamber,' p. 104). 

the imputation against the earl when ' ' Protestation is a defence of safeguard 

made in such a court was a gratuitous to the party which maketh it from being 

libel. But if Coke's language be interpret- concluded by the act he is about to do, that 

able as meaning that the Star Chamber issue can not be joined by it.' Plowd. fol. 

could take cognisance of misdemeanors 273, Cowel, * Interpreter,' a. v. 

generally, as of forgery, then an accusa- *~' Interlined. 

tion of false imprisonment brought before ' It is to be noted that in B the two 

it was not punishable as Scandalum Mag- justices are mentioned in the reverse order, 

natum, for it was a proper court in which to which suggested that Wood, who was the 

seek redress. As a matter of fact the Star junior as a judge, had precedence given 

Chamber did take cognisance of false im- to him because he was already Chief Justice 

prisonment in Elizabeth's time. See Buttle of the Common Pleas, and this would date 

V. Harcourt in 19 Eliz., where the defen- the case after October 28, 1500. The order 

dant confined the plaintiff in stocks and in which their names appear here precludes 

in a cage, for which he was conmiitted the probability of this, 

to the Fleet and fined 200Z. (J. S. Burn, * See A, p. 97, n. 7, supra. 
* The Star Chamber ' [1870], p. 73). It also 



104 COURT OF THE STAK CHAMBER 

haue labored the matir to be called before the Kinges Councell but 
oonly to haue by den the seid m** Bray order and award Orellis if the seid 
John Goryng myght haue beene suffred to haue goone at his libertie 
uppon suiSicient suertie ' to haue awnswerd to the seid Erie at the 
next terme which the said Justicez thought resonabill and according to 
the lawe and good conscience he wold nevir haue sued other reamydy 
And he saith that he nevir said nor thought to bring the said matir 
out of the said Justices handes by pryukes ® like as in thawnswer of 
the seid Erie it is surmytted but wold haue beene wele contentid to 
haue biden any direction that the said m^ Bray uppon theire report 
wold haue made And where the seid Erie Justifieth his entre in to the 
londes of the seid John and taking and perceyving of the Rentes of the 
same londes by reason that John Goryng grauntfadre to the said John 
now repliaunt whoos heire he is held the seid londes of the said Erie by 
knyghtes service and died in his homage the seid John being within 
the age of xxj yeres the same John saith as he hath aforsaid that he 
knowit not that the seid John his Grauntfadre held the seid Londes 
of the seid Erie by knyghtes seruyce nor yet that he died in the 
homage of the seid Erie And where the seid Erie saith that the said 
John Goryng grauntfadre tyme of his deth held viij seuerell porcions 
of londes of the seid Erie, of euery which parcelles the seid Erie ought 
to haue a movnter of ' a heryot & so for part of the seid heriottes or 
mownters the said Erie toke vj Oxen and a hors which was the goodes 
& catallis of the said John Goryng grauntfadre tyme of his deth 
The said John saith as is aforsaid that the said John Goryng 
grauntfadre died not seased of no such viij porcions of londes nor noone 
other holden of the seid Erie as the same John dyuers tymes hath 
said and shewed in the presens of the seid Erles Councell aswel by 
fynes recoueres and other dedes and munymentes prouyng the same 
And as to that which is allegged and showed in the awnswer of the 
seid Erie that the seid John shuld sedicyously and sclaunderously put 
yn his bill of complaynt that the seid Erie did kepe him in dures to 
thentent he shuld be compelled to make fyne with the seid Erie at his 
plesure, The seid John saith that he nether put nor vsed no wordes 
in his bill of no seducyous mynde nor never entended to disclaunder 
the seid Erie but at al tymes hath endevored hym to opteyne the 
good lordshipp of the seid Erie by al meanes to him possible his right 
savid which wele apery th by that the seid John wold haue youen ^ the 

* See Introd., p. cxv. Murray, *Eng.Diot.,* s.v. • give,' A, 8. The 

* See B, p. 100, n. 9, supra. * y ' represents the sound of the Auglo- 
^ Sic. Saxon 3. Gf. J. Gwilt, * Anglo-Saxon 

* Archaic form of ' given.* See J. A. H. Grammar * (1829), p. 2. 



GORYNG V. NORTHUMBERLAND, EARL OF 105 

seid Erie xx'^ for noone other cause but oonly to haue had his good 
Lordshipp. And the same John is and at all tymes shalbe ready to 
Bubmytte hymselfe to the said Erie with as humble Bequestes as he 
and his frendes kan or may make to haue his good lordshipp And 
the cause why the seid John saied in his byll that the seid Erie kept 
him in dures to thentent he shuld be compelled to fyne with the said 
Erie was for that the seruantes of the seid Erie often tymes awnswerd 
the seid John that he shuld not speke with such of his frendes as he 
desired to speke with without hit were to fall to an ende with the 
seid Erie, And also the seid John iij daies after that he was seased 
bi the said Erie cowde not be suffered to speke with noone of his 
frendes nor afterward by long tyme without that oone of the seid 
Erles seruantes shuld stand by and here what shuld be said which 
was not convenyent nor resonable whan that the Pryvite of the 
evidences of the seid John shuld be shewed Which causes and other 
caused the seid John and his Councell to thynk that so streight 
kepyng was to thentent to make hym the rather to applye to the seid 
Erie ^ mynde & also where the seid Erie saith that the tenauntes of 
the seid John shuld pay rent to the seid Erie and were aggreable to 
pay the seid Rent as for londes beyng within the Warde of the seid 
Erie Therunto the seid John Goryng saith that the tenauntes that 
he hath supposed in his awnswer that paid him the seid Bent were 
compelled bi cohercion of distresse and by vncurteys & vnlaufull 
demeniours of the officers of the seid Erie. Without that that thei paid 
hit in any other fourme Which proveth wele in that as ij° '^ of the 
tenauntes of the seid John si then the seasour of the seid Erie beene 
departid from their fermys.^" Al which matiers the seid John haue 
beene and yet is ready to proue as your most honorable lordshippis 
shall think most resonable. 

Indorsement illegible. 

• Twain. '" See Introd., p. cxvii. 



106 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



JOYFULL V. WARCOPPE.' 

A.* To the king our soueraign lord 

1500 In humble Wyse compleynen to youre most noble grace your 
feithfull Subgiettes and true ligmen Eichard Joyfull John Mercer 
of Warcoppe in your Countie of Westmerland yomen, Gabriell 
Warcoppe, Thomas Mosse theldre Robert Gibson and Bobert Mosse 
, of the same yomen. That where your said besechers were in godes 
peas and yours, Gone Robert Warcoppe theldre of Warcoppe,^ Robert 
Warcoppe the yonger,^ and other Riottours and mysruled people, to 
the Numbre of Uij persons and moo, the xiiij^** day of the Moneth 
of Octobre last past,* with force and Armys, That is to sey, With 
Bowes, Arrowes, Bylles,* Swordes, and Bokelers At Warcoppe forsaid 
in the Countie of Westmerland riottously assembled made Assault 
vppon your said besechers, And there bett wounded and putt in 
Jeopardie of theire lyves without occasion on theyre parte gevyng 
to the great perill of your said besechers And to the worst exemple 
of other lyke offendyng, Gnlesse due punysshment be had for 
Beformacion of the premisses. In consideracion wherof. And that 
youre said pover subgiettes myghte there lyve in godes peas and 
yours, soueraigne lord, that it myghte please your moost noble grace 
to graunt to your said besechers your gracious lettres of priue Seal 
to be directed to the said mysdoers Commaundyng theym by the 
same tappere before your highnesse and your honourable Counsail 
At A day by youre grace to be lymytted And to bryng with theym 
such other of the said oflendors As shal like youre grace to aunswere 
to the premisses And therin ferther to doo and Beceyve aftre theyre 
demerites As shal accord with Bight and good conscience And your 
said besechers shal pray to god for the preseruacion of your moost 
noble estate in yoy long te(ndure).® 

' S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 63. See p. 253, it relates to the same events, is to a petition 

infra. by two of the plaintiffs only. 

'-' This is probably the original bill of * See By land, abbot of, v. Warcoppe, 

complaint, while that to which B and C p. 256, n. 7. 

are answers, and which alleged contempt, is ^ I.e. 1499. See F, p. 113, infra, 

missing. It is plain that it is only a draft, * See Walterkyn v. Letice, p. 166, 

being struck through in contemporary ink, n. 5. 
and it will be seen that the answer B, though ^ MS. torn. 



JOYFULL r. WAKCOPPE 107 

B.^ Thaunswer of Robert Warcoppe thelder Robert Warcoppe 
the younger Gabryell Warcoppe^ Thomas mosse thelder*^ 
Robert Gybson^ Robert mosse* yoman John Elwald and 
Christofer Thompson to the byll of Compleynt of Richard 
Joyful! & John merser. 

The seid Robert Warcoppe thelder Gabryell Warcoppe & Robert 
Gybson seyen and euery of theym seyith That as to any Riott 
Assemble assaute woundyng betyng or any other vnlawfuU demenyng 
supposed by the seid byll to be done they ar therof nothyng Gyltye 
And prayen ther resonable Costys for ther wrongful! vexacion yn 
this behalff And the seid Robert Warcoppe the younger John Elwald 
& Cristofer Thompson seyen and euery of theym seyith That the 
seid Richard Joyfull Bayly of Warcoppe^ John merser Gylberd 
mossegraue Richard Richardson John Gollen Millys Waller Thomas 
Merser Robert Sympson Robert Stedman William Stedman William 
Drybeke Robert Lambert William Stoddart and John Stanton acom- 
panyed with dyuers other Riottuse personys vnknowen lo the number 
of xl arrayed in manor of werre That is to sey with Salettes^ 
Swordys Bucclers byllys*^ and Clobbys^ assembled to gyder the xiiij*'' 
day of October the yere of the Reyng of oure Soueraigne Lord 
the kyng that now is the xv'^' ^ att Warcoppe aforeseyd withyn the 
franches and lybertye of the abbott of Byland with greate violence in 
manor of new Insurreccion ^ toke & drave awey xx^* oxen kyen and 
Calues wherof ij of thejrm were belongyng to the seid Robert War- 
coppe the younger and the r^sidew were belongyng to the tenauntes 
v& Inhabitauntes of the seid lordshippe of Warcoppe without Cause 
resonable or any sufficient auctoryte yn the lawe and by ther myght 
strength and wilfuU powar dyd withold & kepe the same Bestys 
and the seid Robert Warcoppe the younger John Elwald Christofer 
Thomson & oone WilUam myrthwayte folowyng & pursuyng the seid 
Riottuse personys to thentent to haue delyuere of the seid Bestys 

' The bill of complaint is lost. See movable, and sometimes grates, but was 

note 2 to A, supra. generally a steel cap greatly resembling 

'^ Plaintiffs in draft A, supra. Appa- the morian ' (S. B. Meyrick, * Antient 

rently Gabriell Warcoppe had gone over Armour,' iii. Glossary, s.v.). Representa- 

to the side of his presumable kinsmen, tions are engraved in J. Skelton, ' Antient 

followed by Bobert Gybson and the elder Arms and Armour ' (1830), ii. plates Ixxiv., 

and younger Mosse. Ixxvi. 

* In the service of Bichard Nevill, Lord ^ See Walterkyn v. Letice, p. 165, n. 5. 
Latimer, lord of the manor, as appears in * See ib. B, 167, n. 2, and Eynesham, 
F, infra. See further Byland, Abbot of, v. Abbot of, v. Harecourt, G, p. 160, n. 26. 
Warcoppe, p. 266, n. 7. ' 1499. 

* 'In French "salade," a light head- ■ This appears to be a common form, 
piece sometimes worn by the cavalry, but but I have not been able to discover the 
generally by the infantry and archers. It precise legal significance of * new.' 

had sometimes a visor, either fixed or 



108 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



ther demaundyd why and for what Cause they hadde so taken the 
seid distresse praying theym yn lawful! maner to make theym delyuere 
of the same for asmoche as they cowde shew noo lawfull auctorytye 
for the takyng of the same, Which aunswered and seyde that ther 
master Edward musgraue^ hadd eommaunded theym so to doo whos 
Commaundement they wold execute who soeuer wold sey nay and the 
seid Bobert Warcoppe the younger & his Companye folowyng &cJ® 



* Apparently as lord of the neighbour- 
ing manor of Great Musgrave, about two 
miles south of Warcop. Edward Musgrave 
of Hertlay or Hartlay, Westmoreland, and 
Edenhall, Oumbcrland, was bom in 1461, 
eldest son and heir of Sir Bichard Mus- 
grave (died 1491. Inq. p. m. Hen. 7, 693, 
695. See also J. Nicolson and R. Bum, 
* Hist, of Westmoreland and Cumberland ' 
[1777], i. 694). He was knighted some time 
before December 10, 1505, for in a re- 
cognisance of that date he is described as 
Sir Edward Musgrave of Edenhall, Cum- 
berland (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, i. 296). He 
was nominated a commissioner of array 
for Westmoreland on June 20 and July 14, 
1511 (ib. 1736, 1799), probably to raise 
men for the body of archers sent in July 
to aid Margaret of Savoy, Begent of the 
Netherlands, against Gueldres. In 1511, 
1612, and 1514 he was in the commission 
of the peace for Westmoreland (ib. 2009, 
3048, 3552, and 5506), and again a com- 
missioner of array in 1512 (ib. 3368). On 
March 14, 1515, he was nominated on the 
commission of the peace for Northumber- 
land (ib. ii. 249). He was pricked sheriff 
of Cumberland in 1614 (P.B.O. List of 
Sheriffs), 1619 (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, iii. 600) 
and 1527 (ib. iv. 3581). In 1624 (February 
10) and 1526 (August 11) (ib. iv. 137, 10, 
and 1610, 11) he was nominated on the 
commission of the peace for Westmoreland. 
While sheriff of Cumberland, in March, 
1528, a Scottish prisoner of some note, 
named Biche Orahame of Esk, escaped 
from his custody in the castle of Carlisle. 
Sir Edward and his son Sir William were 
accused of connivance and indicted. The 
Grand Jury disagreed and the bill was lost 
(ib. iv. 4134). He apparently vindicated 
himself and his son to the satisfaction of 
the Government, for on October 9, 1530, 
his son. Sir William, obtained an annuity 
of 20 marks (13L 6s. Sd.) out of the 
Lordship of Penreth, Cumberland, during 
his father's lifetime (ib. 6751, 3), and Sir 
Edward was on March 6, 1531, nominated 
on the commission of the peace for West- 
moreland (ib. V. 166, 16). He was foreman 
of the Grand Jury which found a true bill 
against Lord Dacre of the North (June 15, 



1534), notwithstanding the fact that a 
principal charge against Lord Dacre was 
one of conspiracy with the Scots to 
kill his son. Sir William Musgrave, 
Constable of Bow or Both Castle (Bew- 
castle) [ib. vii. 962]. Lord Dacre was 
afterwards acquitted by his peers, and Sir 
William Musgrave, who had been his chief 
accuser (ib. 829), fell into disfavour both 
with his father and with the Duke of 
Norfolk, who, as Earl Marshal, had pre- 
sided at the trial (ib. 1647). These events 
led to feuds and riots in the North, where 
the great landowners, assured of Dacre*s 
condemnation, had begun to despoil his 
estates. Among them Sir Edward Mus- 
grave was bound over by the Earl of West- 
moreland, upon Cromwell's orders, to keep 
the peace (July 13, 1535, ib. viii. 1030, cf. 
ib. vii. 895), his servants having a chronic 
feud with those of Sir Thomas Wharton 
(ib. viii. 1030, 1046 ; xii. ii. 422). But he 
remained on the commission of the peace 
for Westmoreland (ib. viii. 149[82]). Upon 
the outbreak of the Northern Bebellion in 
October 1636, the insurgents marched to 
Sir Edward Musgrave's house at Edenhall 
and administered to him and his house- 
hold an oath of adhesion to their cause 
(ib. xii. i. p. 303). That Sir Edward was 
not suspected of complicity is evident from 
the fact that he reappears in the commis- 
sion of the peace for Westmoreland in 
March 1537 (ib. 795, 4, and ib. ii. 1311, 
29), and he was ordered for the security of 
the borders to lie in Harteley Castle (ib. ii. 
2493, ii.) The commission for the inquisi- 
tion post mortem was issued May 12, 
1543, for Cumberland (ib. xviii. i. 56). He 
married in 1484 Alice, daughter of Sir 
Bichard Batcliff, of Ledbury (Marriage 
Licences, Surtees Soc. 1864. Test. Ebor. 
Ac, vol. xlv. p. 348), and in 1496 Joan, 
daughter of Sir Christopher Ward (ib. p. 
360). 

^'^ Continues as C, except that * and 
William Morthwayte' is omitted, as also 
the clause beginning ' And the seid Thomas 
mosse . . . f&ray,' for which is substituted 
*And the seid Bobert mosse and Thomas 
mosse came then only for the Byddyng 
of/ &c. 



JOYFULL V, WARCOPPE 109 

c. Thaniswer of Eobert Warcoppe thelder Eobert Warcoppe 

theyounger John Elwald Thomas Mosse thelder Robert 
mosse John Patenson John Ranwicke Christofer Thompson 
John Style William morthewayte John Wryghtson Richard 
Soukeman Robert Haton Thomas mosse theyounger John 
mosse & John Scott to the byll of Compleynt of Rychard 
JoyfuU & John mercer. 

They sey & euery of theym seyth that the seid byll is insufficient 
it vntrew & of malice fayned to the sclaunder vexacion & troble of 
theym & of euery of theym. Without that they or any of theym ar 
gyltye of takyng or impoundyng of any Catall of the seid Complay- 
nauntes att warcoppe aforeseid in maner & fourme as is supposid by 
the seid bill of Compleynt and without that the seid Robert Warcoppe 
thelder ys gyltye of any Riott or of any other vnlawfuU demeanyng as 
is supposed by the seid bill. Neuertheles for the declaracion of the 
trothe The seid Robert W^arcoppe the younger Robert Gybson John 
Elwald & Christofer Thompson Seyn and euery of theym seyith That 
one Thomas Abbott of Byland ^ predicessor of the Abbott that now is ^ 
was seasid of the maner & lordshippe of Blatarne ^ in his demesne as 
of fee as yn the Right of his Churche * to the which maner & lord- 
shippe the seid Abbott & his predicessours haue hadd & vsed dyuers 
libertyes & franches as retourne of all maner wryttes & execucions of 
the same and euery Retourne to be hadd & made by his Bayly for the 
tyme beyng at euery Sessions & assisses withyn that Shere holden 
and also haue vsed to hold all maner plees of Repleuyn withyn the 
same lordshippe and so seasid of the same maner & lordshippe gaue 
& graunted the seid lordshippe to the seid Robert Warcoppe thelder 
to haue to hym for terme of his lyeflf yldyng therfor yerly to the same 
Abbott & his successours a certen Rentte Byforce wherof the seid 
Robert was seasid of the seid lordshippe yn his demeane as of frehold 
and afterward dyuers beestes were founde damagefesaunt withyn the 
frehold of the seid lordshippe of Blatarne, Wherfor one Robert Shawe 
then beyng Comen Pynder * for the seid Robert Warcoppe toke & 
impounded all Suche maner beestes ther founden damagefesaunt*^ 
withyn the seid lordshippe att the Comyn Pounde at Blatarne afore- 
seid and afterward the seid Richard Joyfvll John mercer and one 

> In Dugdale*s list of the abbots of ' Now Bleatarn, about 1^ m. S.E. of 

Byland * Thomas'— surname unknown — Warcop. 

is given as abbot in 1478. * Monasticon,' * See Byland, Abbot of, v. Warcoppe, 

V. 346. A, p. 256, n. 8. 

^ John Farlington. See Byland, Abbot * Impounder (* inclusor *). 

of, V. Warcoppe, A, p. 263, n. 3. • See Introd., p. cxx. 



110 COURT OF THE STAR CHAxMBER 

gylberd a ' mussegraue gentylman ® acompanyed with dyuers other 
Eiottuse personys vnknowen to the number of xxij** defencible arraied 
in maner of werre with Brygenders ^ Stele Bonettes Swordys Bucclers 
Clobbys & byllys The seid xiiij^'' day of October toke the seid Beestes 
out of the seid pounde and theym with violence myght & powar drave 
away without Shewyng or delyuere of any wrytt warrant or repleuyn 
or any other lawfull auctoritye wherfor the seid Eobert Warcoppe 
theyounger John Elwald William morthwayte & Christofer Thompson 
folowyng the seid Riottuse personys to thentent to haue delyuere of 
the seid beestes mett with the seid misdoers att plowlondbodham ^" 
within the seid fraunches then hauyng the seid beestes demaundid of 
theym why and by watt auctoritye they hadd taken the seid beestes 
praying theym yn lawfull maner to make theym delyuere of the same 
Which Aunswerd and seyde That they hadd executed Edward musse- 
graues Commaundement and that they wold reteyne theym wo so euer 
wold sey nay And the seid Eobert Warcoppe the yownger & his 
Company e folowyng the seid Eiottuse personys eftsonys ^^ intreted for 
the deluyere of the seid distres seying vnto theym that they hadd 
broken the tranches of the seid abbott of Byland and that ther master 
woldnott avoue theym yn ther misbehauyng and so the seid Eiottuse 
personys of ther owne will left the seid distres and the seid Eobert 
theyounger & hisCompanye resceyued the same distres and incontynent 
theruppon one Eobert Sympson beyng yn Companye with the seid 
Eiottuse personys Spake with open voyce, Fye, shall we suflfer suche 
a lewde *^ & sympuU Companye of iij or iiij personys to dreve away 
oure distres ? Lett vs sett vppon theym and take oure distrees 
agayne. And forewith with greate violence all the seid Eiottuse 
personys assauted the seid Eobert Warcoppe the younger John Elwald 
Christofer Thompson and William morthwayte and the seid Eobert 
Warcoppe theyounger John Elwald Christofer Thompson & William 
morthwayte defended ^^ the seid Eiottuse personys and so yflf the seid 

^ Observe the sigii of the place name. '® ' Ploughlands * is marked on the map 

" Probably a yoanger brother of Edward about halfway between Bleatam and Great 

Musgrave. For the use of * gentleman * as Musgrave. Great Musgrave lies E. and 

the style of younger sons, see * Select Cases Warcop N.E. of Bleatam. 
from the Court of Requests * (Selden Soc. " A second time, again. This form of 

1898), p. 147, n. 4. spelling is not noticed in Murray, qu. vid. 
• * Brigander,' body armour for foot " Common, vulgar. * The march-law, 

soldiers, originally armour for a brigand. which is the statutes of Kilkenny, is said 

It was also called ' brigandine,* and was to be no law, but a lewd custom.' Davies, 

composed of iron rings or small thin iron ' Why Ireland &c.* J. A. H. Murray, * Eng. 

plates, sewn upon canvas, linen or leather Diet.' s.v. 

and covered over with similar materials. " Warded off. Cf. Grafton, Chron. ii. 

Planch6, 'CycLCost.' See J. A. H. Murray, 17 (1668), 'to withstand and defend his 

sub w. enimyes,' ib. 



JOYFULL V, WARCOPPE 111 

Riottuse personya or any of theym any harme hadde hitt was of ther 
owne assaute & yn defence of the seid Robert theyounger John Elwald 
Christofer Thompson & William morthwayte, And the seid Thomas 
mosse thelder Robert mosse John mosse with other of the seid defen- 
dauntes Commyng the day aforeseid frome ther devyne seruyce heryng 
of the seid assawte & affray Game to the seid Riottuse personys to 
thentent onely for the Riddyng of the seid assaute & fray & for the 
Conseruacion of the kynges Peace. Without that the seid defen- 
dauntes or any of theym ar gyltye of any Riott or of any other vnlaw- 
fuU demenyng oderwyse or yn any other maner then ys supposed by 
this aunswer, And as to the seid dysobeyans ^* of the seid priuy seales 
they sey & euery of theym seyith that vppon ther examynacion ther 
shalbe founde yn theym no maner of Contempt ayenst the kynges 
grace nor his lawes. All which maters and euery of theym they ar 
redy to prove as this Courte wull awarde and prayen and euery of 
theym prayith to be dysmyssed with ther resonable Costes for ther 
wrongfuU vexacion in this behalff &c. 

Ind(/rsed in modern hand. Joyfull r. Warcop & al. 

D. The Replicacon of Richard Joyfull John Mercere & ^ 

Mercere to thanswere of Robert Warcoppe theldere Robert 
Warcoppe the yonger and dyuers othere &c. 

The seide Richard & John seyen that their bill is sufficient, true 
& not feyned of malice for vexacion or troble as by the seide answere 
is supposid, And the seid Robert Warcoppe thelder & Robert Warcoppe 
the yonger & all other in the bill of compleint of the seid Richard & 
John Mercer speciiSed be gilty of all suche Riottes vnlawfuU inpound- 
yng of Catell and other mysdemeanours as in the same bill is alleggid. 
And the seide Richard Joyfull & John mercer seyen that they knowe 
noe franchis that the seide Abbote of Bilond hath at Blaterne in 
maner & forme as by the seide answere is supposid but the seid 
Richard & John Mercer seyen that suche Catell off theres as the seide 
Warcoppe thelder & Warcoppe the yonger & othere toke & distreyned 
they inpounded them at Warcoppe forseide withoute any lawful! cause 
soe to do for whiche Catell and for ony damages done by them yf they 
ony dide there was sufficient amendes offerid for theni to the seid 
Warcoppes by the ownere of the same Catell & othere,^ And also 

>* A form not noticed by Murray, who, cepit aueria sua quia ilia inuenit in damno 

however, gives the adjective ' disobeyant. * suo et secundum legem et consuetudineip 

8eo further p. 106, n. 2, supra. regni imparcauit ilia donee damnum suum 

' Blank in MS. The missing name is ei esset emendatum et non alio modo. 

Thomas. See p. 107. Bracton, f. 158. 

'^ * Dicere enim poterit captor quod iuste 



112 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

sufficient Replevyn suyd for their delyueraunce,^ And that not with- 
stondyng they were still kepte in the pounde by the seid Warcoppes 
contrary to all right. And ouer this they seyen that at the day of 
the seide Riotte supposid & before the Ryotte comyttid & done the 
seid Richard JoyfuU Baylly of the lordeshippe of Warcoppe John 
Mercere & othere distreyned other Catell of the seide mysdoers withyn 
the seid lordeshippe of Warcoppe for certen dutees by the owners of 
them due to the lorde of the seide lordeshippe ^ & were comyng to the 
seid distresse in peasible manere towardes the lordes pounde theire 
And the seid Riottours hauevyng knowlege therof riottously with 
force & Armes came & toke the seid distresse fro them and them then 
& there bete wounded & maheymed in maner & forme as by the seide 
bill of complaint is alleggid, the first distresse taken by the seid 
mysdoers then and after that beyng still in pounde by reason of their 
takyng aforeseide. Without that that the seid Abbot of By Ion d 
hadde or hath ony suche fraunchise in maner & forme as by the seide 
Answere is supposid, And withoute that that the seid Richard Joyfull 
John Mercere & other named with hym to the nombre of xxij persones 
or to ony nombre be gilty of ony Ryotte brekyng of ony pounde ^ or 
comyng in harnesse in maner ^' And forme as by the seide Answere is 
supposid. And with oute that the seid Richard Joyfull or ony of his 
company hadde ony manere vnfittyng langage to the seide mysdoers 
And with oute that the seid Robert Symson hadde ony such langage to 
the seid mysdoers in manere & forme as by their seid Answere is sup- 
posid, And with oute that the seid Richard Joyfull or ony of the seide 
complaynauntes made ony assaute or Riotte vpon the seid mysdoers 
in manere & forme as by their seide answere is also supposid, And for 
as moche as none of the seide mysdoers with sey not the disobeyng 
of the firste privy Sealx to them delyuered but that they & euery of 
them confesse a contempte done to the kyng oure souereign lorde for 
the disobesaunce of his moste highe comandement in the same privy 
Sealx conteyned the seid complaynauntes pray therfore that the seide 
mysdoers & disobeyers of the seid privy sealx may be punysshed 
Accordyng to there demerites in that behalfe. All which maters the 
seid Richard Joyfull & the seid John mercere bene redy to proue as 

' See Introd., p. cxx. upon Littleton, 47 b. 

* * Si autem iasta sit captio videlicet * By the statute of Northampton, 2 Ed. 
pro seruicio detento ab aliquoqui seruitium 3, c. 8 (1328), it was forbidden to go or 
illud cognoscit, tunc poterit ille qui capit ride armed. In 1383 the Commons peti 
cognoscere captionem illam, nee in tali tioned Bichard 2 that the Act might be 
captione delinquit.* Bracton, f. 166. proclaimed in every county and enforced, 

* * If goods be distrained without cause, to which the king assented. The plea of 
and impounded, the owner can not breake the plaintififs in this replication is probably 
the pound and take them out, because they in view of that statute, 

are then in the custody of the law.* Coke 



JOYFULL r. WARCOPPE 1]3 

this Court wuU Awarde & prayen in all thyng as they haue prayed in 
there seid bill. 

E. The Eeioynder of Robert Warcoppe thelder Robert War- 
coppe the yonger and other to the Replicacion of Richard 
Joy full it John mercer. 

The said Robert Warcoppe thelder Robert Warcoppe the yonger and 
other defendauntes say in euery thyng As in there Answer is Comprysid 
And ouer that they say that After the said Richard JoyfuU John mercer 
Gylbert musgraue and other hadd Riotously takyn the said Catall oute 
of the pynfold within the franches of Blaterne Aforesaid as is Allay d ^ 
in the said Answer the said Joyfull mercer Gylbert musgraue and other 
Riotus persons to the nomber exprissid in the said Answer Ryotusly 
with oute eny cause toke certen catall within the said franches of 
Blatern And theym forcybly drove oute of the said franches to such 
tyme As the said warcoppe the yonger come in peassible maner and 
iij persons with hym, and desyred the delyuere there of in lawfuU 
maner, vpon whame the said Joyfull mercer, Gylbert musgraue and 
other made Assaute in maner and forme As is alleggid in the said 
Answer. Withoute that eny lawfull Amendes was oflferd by the 
owners of the said Catall So impoundyd And without that there were 
eny dewtes dew by the owners of the said Catall last takyn to the lord 
of the said Lordshippe or to ony other for which they myght of Right 
distreyne the said Catall And without that the said Warcoppe and 
other toke the said distres fro theym in Riotus maner And withoute 
that the said catall fyrst inpowndyd were styll in the pownd att the 
tyme of the Assaute & Aifrey made vpon the said warcoppe & other. 
All which maters they er Redy to prove As this Court will Award And 
prayeth As they prayed in there said Answer. 

F. Termino Pasche Anno regni regis xv°.* 

Ricardus Joifull Johannes mercer Gabriell Warcoppe Thomas 
mosse senior Robertus Gibson Robertus mosse de Comitatu 
Westmerland contra Robertum Warcoppe seniorem & Robertum 
Warcoppe Juniorem.* 

Robert Warcoppe thelder sworne vpon this complaint deposith that 
he nether bete nether causid tobe bete, the day and place within declared 

' Allay, the original form of the later * It is to be observed that these are the 

allege.' Cf. p. 234, infra. See J. A. H. parties as set out in A. Perhaps the solu- 

Murray, * Eng. Diet.' s.v. Allay. tion of this puzzle is that this document 

' May 6— June 1, 1500. J. J. Bond, was evidence taken by commissioners and 

* Handybook of Dates.* returned to the Star Chamber, and that the 



114 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

any of the complaynauntes, nether was weting willing privye nether 
consenting there to. albe it of this deponentes houshold seruauntes 
there were diuers that is to say Robert warcoppe the youner John 
Elwold, Christofor Thomson, John Patynson and other mo which hav- 
ing knoulege that diuers seruauntes & tenauntes of the Lord latemer 
and of Edward Musgraves were come and breke vp the powndfold^ of 
the tranches of the abbey of biland ' and to take oute certaigne bestes 
that there were empounded for damage faysant vpon the ground 
of this deponent, went to a water side ouer which the said tenauntes 
and seruants of the Lord latimer and Edward were comyng * with the 
bestes that were empounded as is before said, and also other bestes of 
such as be now the defendantes^ and bade thaim leve the bestes 
behind thaim, and thei expresslie denyed so to do, and oute with 
thaire wepons and assaulted the said deponentes seruantes and if any 
hurt were then doone to any man there it was in thair owne assaulte, 
and not in ^ blame of the defendauntes. And this notwithstanding 
this deponent as he saith brought to Appulby at the next Sesshions 
such of his seruants as were at the said affray, where thei were bound 
and found suretie to the peax and the said persons making the said 
affray that is to say Richard Joifull and other be at thair libertie. 



PYNSON & OTHERS «. SQUYER & OTHERS.^ 

A. To the right Reuerend fader yn God my lorde Cardinall 
Archbisshope of Caunterburye And Chaunceller of Inglonde.^ 

1500 Lamentablye Compleynyth vn to youre Gode grace youre poore 
Oratourz and daily bedeman ^ Rycharde Pynson ^ Cornelys Johnson ^ 
and Harre Wilson ' of the parish of seynt Clementes without temple 

Court thereupon ordered a fresh plaint to be prayer/ here * petitioner/ 
filed, which has disappeared, but to which * The printer, a Norman by birth, not 

B was the answer. naturalised till 1513 (S.P. Dom. Henry 8, 

*-* Interlined. i. 4873). The colophon of his first dated 

* There follow, struck through, the book, * The Dialogue of Dives and Pauper,' 
words ' to come to the said pound and bade by Henry Parker (1493), states that he was 
thaim come no more.' living * at the Temple-barro of London,' 

^ There follow, struck through, the though he shortly alters this to ' dwelling 

words * and there the same persons.' without the Temple barre.' There he con- 

* * thair ' struck through. tinned until the beginning of the sixteenth 
' S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 94. century, when he moved to the sign of the 

* John Morton, Archbishop of Canter- George in Fleet Street, continuing at that 
bury, October 6, 1486 ; Chancellor, March 6, address till his death ' (d. 1530), * Diet. Nat. 
1487 ; Cardinal, 1493 ; died October 12, Biog.' He succeeded Caxton as printer to 
1500. ' Diet. Nat. Biog.' the King. Registers of Stationers' Com- 

' Sic. The word is an obsolete form of pany (Birmingham, 1894), v. lix. 
beadsman, according to J. A. H. Murray * Neither of these persons appeal's in 

(' Eug. Diet.'), meaning literally * a man of the Begisters of the Stationers' Company. 



PYNSON & OTHERS V. SQUYER & OTHERS 115 

barre That where as they and theyre seruauntz the xxj daie of Aprill 
last past ^ were yn God is peace an the kynges vn to the tyme that 
oone Harre Swquier Cordiner^ John Walker sadeler baillye of the 
Sauoye ^ & John uikers Bocher dwellyn yn the seid parish of Seynt 
Clementes wyth yn the Countie of Middlesex accompanyed wyth 
diners other Eiouttos and euyl disposed personz to your seid sup- 
pliauntez vnknown to nombre of xl persons and aboue att x of the 
Clocke att nyght of the same daye ley yn a wayte ® of youre seide 
Complaynantz att the parish of seynt Clementes a fore seyd to thentent 
to haue moordred & slayn your seid suppliauntz and soo accordyng 
to their malicious and cruell entent they mett wyth youre said com- 
pleinantz and theym then & their wyth force and armes cruelluy and 
Riouttusley assautyd and theym by force droue yn to their housez or 
elles they had bene slayn and att the same tyme and place maihemed 
and hurte diuers of the seruantz of your seid suppliantz and the seid 
Riottourz then not content butt fett ^® in forme ^^ and other abily- 
mentz ^^ and wold haue broken vppe the doore of youre seid Oratourz 
and soo to haue executed their furder malicious and cruell purpose 
yf Gentill men had nott bene the which atthat tyme put theym from 
their purpose, And on the Wensdaye then next ensuyng the seid 
Riottours caused xv or xyj of their companye to lye yn awayte* for the 
seruantz of the seid Richard Pynson yn flete stret yn london to 
thentent to haue murdred and slayn hys seruantz & so they mette 
wyth the same seruantz and theym then and their cruellye assauted 
sore bete and wounded soo that they were yn great ieopardye of theyr 
lyuys and att the same tyme and place the seid Riottourz felonouslye 
toke awey a Cloke and a shorte dager from on of the seid seruantz and 
haue solde the same Cloke to an vppeholester yn the parish of Seynt 
Thomas thapostell yn London ^' yet moreouer att diuers tymys the 

* 1500. a bench. Murray (s.v.) gives an example 

' Cordwainer. ' Originally in Spanish, of its use as a weapon from Fabyan's 

Italian, and Old French a maker of or ' Chron.' vii. coxxii. 246 : ' The munkes 

dealer in Cordovan leather ; thence, in later with fourmes and candelstyckes defended 

French and the Teutonic languages, a theym.' 

worker in this leather, a shoemaker.* ''^ The usual form of * habiliments 'when 

J. A. H. Murray, ' Eng. Diet.,' s.v. in the sense of weapons of war, doubtless 

** This person does not appear in the list from the recognised connexion with able, 

of stewards or bailiffs given by W. J. Loftie, ability, quasi ' things making able for war.' 

• Memorials of the Savoy ' (1878), pp. 82, Cf. Gregory, * Chron.' (Camd. Soc.), 145. 
83. See further B, p. 117, n. 1, infra. *A11 the abyllymentys of werre ... as 

" Await, an obsolete substantive, an am- welle ponders, gunnys, schott or othyr 

bush. Cf. Chaucer. Nonnes Pr. T. 406. artyleres.' J. A. H. Murray, • Eng. Diet.,* 

* Homicides. . . . That in awayte lyn to s.v. Habiliment. Cf. also Fumivallys In, 
morther men.' J. A. H. Murray, *£ng. Principal of, v. Johnson A others. A, p. 
Diet.,' S.V. See also pp. 37 and 248. 239, infra. 

'» See p. 141, n. 12. " In Knightrider Street, City. J. Stow, 

" Apparently not a printer's * forme,' but ed. J. Strype, * Survey ' (6th ed 1754), i. 581. 

I 2 



116 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

seid Biottourz (&) '^ euyll disposed persons haue so manased and 
thretened the same seruantz of the seid Richard Pynsonz & putt theym 
yn such fer & perell of theyr lyuys that they durst nother goo to the 
Church to hire their dyuyne seruycez nor to (goo) ^* owt of their 
maisters doorres to doo their maisters besynes for whych assautz and 
manassynges the seid seruantz bene departyd from the seid Richard 
Pynson & haue left ryghte greate besynez the whiche he hath nowc yn 
hande to be vndone to hys greate hurte and vtter distrucion. Also 
the seid Harrye Squier, John Walker, John Viker & other of their 
malicious & euyl disposed sect ^'^ haue made great othys and pro- 
misys that their shall nother frenshman nor flemmyng dewell nor 
abide wythyn the seid parish of seynt Clementes and thus dailye and 
contenuellye the seid Riottourz manass your seid Oratourz & their 
seruantz so that they nother their seruantz dare nott goo aboute 
their laufull besynez to the vtter vndoyng of your seid Oratourz. In 
Consideracion wher of please your grace to commaunde the seid Harrye 
Squeyer, John Walker and John viker to appeir be fore the kynges 
highnes and the lordes of hys moost honorable Gouncell att such tyme 
& pleace & vnder such certeyne peyne as by your grace shalbe lemyted 
to make aunswer to the premyssez and youre seid supphauntz shall 
euer praie to all myghty God for your noble grace long to endure. 

hidorsed. Termino Trinitatis anno xv ^^ 
Ricardus Pynson Cornelius Johnson & Henre Wylson contra 
Balliuum de Sabau[dia] ^^ Henricum Squier & aUos. 

B. The Seuerall answherres of Herry Squyer Cordyner John 
Walker Bayly of Sauoye & John Vykers Bocher to the 
Byll of Compleyntes of Richard Pynson Cornelys & Herry 
Wylson. 

Thei sey that the seid Byll of compleynt is insufficient vncerten & 
vntrue & onely Imagined of malice without ony true grownd or cause 
resonable to thenthent to vexe & trouble the seid Herry John & 
John ageyn all right & good Concience and furthermore thei sey that 
thei ne none of theym ner eny oder by theire procuryng or sterryng 
be not in eny thyng gylty of eny ryott assemble felony mayme ore of 
eny oder mysdemeanour oflfence or wronge in maner & fourme as is 
surmytted by the seid byll of compleynt and the seid Herry seith 
that he the same nyght immediatly after the fyrst Ryott supposed 

" Conjectural ; MS. torn. " June 24 to July 16, 1500. J. J. Bond, 

»* Following. ♦ Handybook ' (1889). '' MS. illegible. 



PYNSON & OTHERS V. SQUYER & OTHERS 117 

syttyng in his house with one Wylliajn Halys his neyghbour, one 
persone to the seid Herry Squyer vnknown came in to his seid house 
& shewed hym & to his seid neyghbour of affray made in the Strete 
& therefore the seid Herry Squyer then & yet beyng one of the 
kynges Constables of Seynt Clementes parysh ^ came out of his house 
accompenyd onely with the seid William Halys & mett nygh his doore 
the seyd Richard Pynson one Thomas Sutton ^ & William Berell ^ & 
in the kynges name charged theym to kepe the kynges pees and the 
seid Richard Pynson charged the seid Constable to kepe the kynges 
pees & furthwyth with out eny further mysdemeanyng or hurt done 
bytwyxt theym the seyd Herry Squyer went home ageyne to his 
house in peseble wyse & there rested alle nyght. AUe which maters 
thei be redy to proue as this Curt wyll award & praith to be 
dismissed with their resonable Costes & damages for their wrongfull 
trouble in this behalf. 

Indorsed. Herry Squyer sworne vpon this his answer * and vpon 
the bill of complaint ayen him saithe that he is not giltie of any 
maner ryot as it is supposid in the said bill, bi his oath more &c.* 

John Vicar sworne and examyned. He saith vpon his oath that 
he is not giltie of any Riot contaigned in the bill ayenst him, for at 
the time of the said Riot supposid he was continuallie in his owne 
hous, and come not forth of his doores, vntill all was doone and 
euery body withdrawn. 

c. Thys ys the Replicacon of Richard Pynson Cornelis Jonson 
and Harre Wylson to the seuerall Aunswer of Herry Squyer 
John Walker & John Vikers. 

The seide Richard Pynson CorneUs Johnson and Harre Wylson 
sey that their Bylle of Complaynt is sufficient Certeyn & true and 
nott ymagyned of malice butt ys Commensed on a true grownde and 

' The parish of St. Clement Danes wad sail, StafiFord,' proved 1508 (J. C. C. Smith, 

within the liberties of the Duchy of Lan- Index, ii. p. 512). 

caster, as also was the Savoy. The de- * Will of * William Berell thelder,' of 

fendant Squyer was the king's constable Crossed Freres, London, and Moohe Badowe, 

as a servant of the duchy, which was the Essex, proved 1518 (J. C. C. Smith, Index, i. 

king's. The liberties of the duchy, ac- p. 52). Will of William Berell, grocer, who 

cording to J. Stow (ed. 1633, p. 492) were devised lands to the Prior and Convent of 

governed by the chancellor of the duchy, the * Crossed Fryers,' near the Tower, dated 

a steward, 'four burgesses & four assis- January 30, 1512, proved 1519. K. B. 

tants to take up controversies; a baylifife, Sharpe,' Wills enrolled in Court of Husting,' 

which hath two or three under bailiffes, London (1890), ii. 628. 

that make arrests within that Libertio, ^ See Bath, Prior of, v. St. Augustine's, 

four constables ' &q. Canterbury, Abbot of, p. 25, n 27. 

-Will of Thomas Sutton, of 'St. M.e. * he can not say ' omitted. 
Lawrence in the Jury, London, and Gnow- 



118 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

on a Just Cause as ytt shalbe Euydently prouede att all tymez, 
further more they sey that the seide Herre Sqwyer John Walker John 
Vikers and euery of theym and other by their proeuryng and steryng 
be gyltye of all Riottz assemblez felonys maymez ^ and of euery other 
mysdemeanure Oflfence and wrong yn the seid bylle off Complaynt 
conteynyd and ouer that the seide Cornelis Richard & Harre Wylson 
sey and auerr yn althynges as they yn their seid bylle of Compleynt 
haue supposed and alleged all whych maters they be redye to auer 
& proue as thys Court woU awarde and praie that the seid Eiottourz 
may be punysshyd accordyng to their offencez. 

CARTER V. MALMYSBURY, ABBOT OF, AND OTHERSJ 

A. To the most reiierent Father in god Byshop of 
Salisburie keper of the kynges great Seale * 

1500 Most lamentably complayneth to your good lordschip your dayly 
Oratoure Robert Garter that where oone Roger Late Abbot ^ of the 
monastery of seint Aldelme of Malmesbury ^ in the Countie of Wyltes 
predicessoure to the nowe Abbate ' there for the summe of xl marcs ^ 

' Mayhems. * Mayhem, mahemium, 48. John Andover, d. 1462. 

membri mutilatio or obtrunoatio, commeth 44. John Aylee (1462-1479). 

of the French word mehaigne, and aignilieth To this last name Dugdale adds ' sup- 

a oorporall hurt, whereby hee loseth a posed to have departed this life in 1479, 

member, by reason whereof hee is less able because then 

to fight ; as by putting out his eye, beating 45. Thomas Olveston was put into 

out his foreteeth, breaking his skull, strik- possession of this abbey, and died in 1509.' 

ing ofif his arme, hand or finger, or cutting Dugdale's editors, however, here intro- 

ott his legge or foot, or whereby he loseth duce the following note : * It is more prob- 

the use of any of his said members.' Coke able that he (John Aylce) died in 1475 or 1476, 

upon Littleton, § 502; cf. id. § 194, and as among the patents we find one 16 Ed. 4 "de 

3 Inst. 118. Cowel adds: * But the cutting regimine abbatie Malmsb. et temporalibus 

off of an ear or nose, the breaking of the ejusdem commiss. priori Bathon. pro quin- 

hinder teeth, or such like, was no mayhem, quennio." The editors had not consulted 

it being rather a deformity of the body the original patent, which shows them to 

than diminishing of strength.' Intcrp. s.v. be mistaken in their inference. See Introd., 

See also Pollock and Maitland, * Hist. Eng. p. cxxlii. 

Law,' ii. p. 487, 488. It is most probable that * Roger ' refers 

> S.CP. Hen. 7, No. 76. to Robert Persore, but whether this MS. 

' Henry Deane, translated from Bangor or Dugdale be right it has not been possible 

to Salisbury, December 7, 1499 (Le Neve, to ascertain. 

* Fasti,' ii. 604) ; appointed Keeper of the * The second abbot (c. 670) and patron 

Great Seal in succession to Morton, October saint of Malmesbury. See ' Diet. Nat. Biog.' 

13, 1500 ; archbishop of Canterbury April * 262. 135. 4d. In the case of the Prior 

26, 1501 (* Diet. Nat. Biog.'). These dates of Bath against the Abbot of St. Augustine's, 

fix that of the petition within six months. Canterbury, p. 29, supra, the price was 16 

' No abbot bearing the Christian name marks (lOl. l^. 4i.). * There are frequent 

of Roger is to be found in Dugdale's list, cases of villains buying their freedom with 

*■ Monast.' i. 256. The succession given by their own money.' Braoton's * Note Book,' 

Dugdale is as follows : pi. 31, 343. P. Vinogradoff, * Villainage in 

41. Robert Persore, 1424-1434. England ' (1892), p. 87. For the acquisi- 

42. Thomas Bristow, d. 1456. lion of fortunes by bondmen (natiri) see 



CARTEK V, MALMYSBURY, ABBOT OF, AND OTHERS 119 

of lafull money of Englond to hym by - homas Carter Grauntfather 
to your seint *'* Suppliaunt and his Frendys payed the same late Abbot 
and his Couent by their Sufficient Dede of manumyssion sealed vnder 
their Couent seale raanumysid and made free for euer the seid Thomas 
Cartar oone William Cartar and John Cartare Sonnes to the seid 
Thomas and all their Sequele ^ and afterwardes the seid John Carter 
hadd issue your seid Suppliaunt and oone John AyUe Abbot theire 
predicessor to the seid nowe Abbot longe tyme after the seid manu- 
myssion not only reteyned youre Suppliant in his seruyce yerly by 
the space of xvij yeres® And by all the seid tyme well and trewly 
contentid and paied to hym his wages as they were agreid appon at 
the tyme of the seid reteyner but also dimysid vnto hym ij mesas 
with thappurtenaunces in Malmesbury foresayd to haue to hym for 
terme of his lyffe^ and receyued of hym for a Fyne c s., And besydes 
this the seid now Abbote *^ reteyned yerely in seruice by the space of 
yj or vij yeres oone John Cartare Brother to your Suppliaunt and 
trewly contentid paied vnto hym all suche wages as they at the tyme 
of the same reteynere were agreed appon and afterwardes the seid 
Dede of manumyssion come to the handes of oone Thomas Herner 
Laurence Hamonde late decessed ^^ and John WhythypoU whych Dede 
by sotill and crafty meanes by twene the seid Laurence and John and 
the seid now Abbot is come to the handes and kepyng of the same 
Abbot So hit is gracious lorde that thes premisses notwythstondyng 

* Domesday of St. Paul's/ p. xzv. Cf. escheators, of London and Bristol, being 

Leadam, * Select Cases in the Court of issued on October 25, 1462, for the restitu- 

Bequests ' (Selden Soc. 1898), pp. Ixz-lzzii. tion of the temporalities of the abbey to Dan 

* Sic, by mistake for * seid.' John Ayly, monk, whose election as abbot 

' Latin sequela, literally * litter ' (of B.(ichard Beauchamp), bishop of Salisbury, 

animals), customarily used in legal docu- had confirmed. For the condition of the 

ments to express the ofifspring of bondmen. abbey under John Aylie's government see 

Cowel (s.y. Manumission) gives an ex- Introd. pp. cxxiii-cxxix. It is probable that 

ample of a manumission by John Pcckham, he became blind about the year 1475, for 

archbishop of Canterbury : * Manumit- November 8 of that year is the latest of his 

timus et ab omni jugo servitutis absol- nominations upon the commission of the 

vimus perpetufeque titulo libertatis decora- peace for Wilts, which had been continuous 

mus Bobertum de Hempstcde in Freintfeld since 1463. P. B. 1461-67, p. 575, 1467- 

qnondam nativum cum tota sequela sua 1477, p. 635. 
procreata et procreanda.' So William de * See Introd., p. cxxv. 

Longesp^e in 1234 granted to the manor of '® Thomas Olveston. Doubtless an 

Berencester (Bicester) his land in adopted name from Olveston in Gloucester- 

Wrechervych (Wrechwick), * cum villanis shire. The temporalities of the abbey were 

et eorum sequelis et catallis.' (White restored to him by patent of June 7, 1480, 

Kennett, ' Parochial Antiquities ' (1818), i. in which he is described as * monk of the 

305). This form Kennett in his ' Glossary monastery ' (Patent Bolls, 20 Ed. 4, p. 202). 

(vol. ii.) erroneously renders * suit and ser- I have not been able to discover any further 

vice,' doubtless confounding it with * secta.' particulars of him. 

** This is substantiated by the Patent " Laurence Hamonde of Tetbury, 

Bolls, 2 Ed. 4 (1462), p. 228, a mandate to Gloucestershire. Will proved 1498. J. C. C. 

the escheators of Wilts, Gloucester and the Smith, * Index of Wills,' i. 249. 
marches of Wales, and the mayors, as 



120 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the same Abbot that now is not Feryng God the kyng oure souerayn 
lorde ne his lawes in the vigill of the holy Trinitie laste paste *^ of 
greate Crueltie and extorcionet mynde without pitie caused the seid 
John Whythipoll Cristofer Capes John Mochgood Eychard Chalener 
William Carew and Thomas Tobie his seruauntes accompanyed wyth 
diuerse othere ryotise and mysrulid persons to goo to the house of 
youre seid Suppliaunt at Malmesbury fore seid and ther they with 
force and armes that is to sey with Bokelers swerdes Dilles ^^ and 
Staffes and other abilementes of warre ^* riotisly the seid bowse and 
Glosse of your seid Oratour brake and entred and v Bollockes & x 
keyne ** ix calues cix shep of the goodes and Catalles of your seid 
Oratour to the value of xx U. then and ther found riotusly with 
great myght and force toke and dryve away and conveyed the same 
to the sayd monastery and the same goodes and Catalles the seid now 
Abbot receyueth and kepyth ther wyth great myght and will not 
suflfre your seid Oratour his wyflf nor Childer haue any soucour or to 
be releued of the same to their vtter distruction and nere Faraysshyiig 
and ouer that the seid riotouse and mysruled persons by the Gom- 
maundement of the seid now Abbot then and ther in to your seid 
Oratoure made assaute and hym toke and imprisoned and so from 
his sayd howse carried hym in prisoun as a theff in to the seid 
monasterie and ther put hym both handes and fete in strayte stockes 
and ponderous Jrrons and tied hym to a great new cheyn to a great 
Stocke and so yet kepyth hym in that intollerable durese and willnat 
suflfre hym to goo to bayly ne nianeprise nor his wyflf nor other his 
frendis to speke with hym nor to bryng to hym any thyng that shuld 
be for his sussetenaunce releue or socour and so ther he lyeth most 
pitiously cryyng and walyng in full great heuynes and all most nere 
dede and lyke to be ^^ shortely murdered excepte your gracious lord- 
schip of your pure pytie and mercy prouyd for hym som remedy in 
the haste possible. Please it ther fore your lordschip the premisses 
tenderly consideryd to graunt severall wryttys sub pena to be directed 
to the same now Abbot John Whythypoll and William Carewe com- 
maundyng them and euery of them by the same to apere afore oure 
souerand lorde the kyng and the lordes of his most honorable Councell 
at his palyee at Westminster at a certen day and vnder a certeyn 
peyn by your good lordeschipp to be lymytted ther to Answere to the 
premisses and Ferther to doo and obeye asby the sayd Councell shalbe 

'* Jane 12, 1600. " See Pynson & ore. v. Squyor & ors., 

" Sic for • Bills,' the stroke distinguish- A, p. 116, n. 12. 
ing B from D having been omitted. On " Pluml of cow. 

bills, see Walterkyn v. Letice, A, p. 165, n. 5. »• * dede ' struck through. 



CARTER t\ MALMYS13URY, ABHOT OF, AND OTHERS 121 

thought reasonable, And also to Commaunde the seyd nowe Abbott 
that he vpon the sight of the sayed wryt of sub pena do deliuer or 
cause to be deliuered your seid Oratour out of his said prisoun and 
suflfre hym to be at large soo that he may be forth comyng to sue this 
his said Complaynt. And this at the reuerence of god and in the 
way of Charite &c. And your sayd Oratour shall dayly pray to god 
for the preseruacion of your good lordschipp. 

Indorsed. Excellentissimo Domino Eegi & consilio suo apud 
Westmonasterium Reddita octabis Michaelis.^'^ 
Garter contra Abbatem de Malmesbury. 

B. 

Henricus dei gracia Eex AngUe & Francie & Dominus Hibernie 
Dilectis & Fidelibus suis Thome ^ Abbati Cirencestriensi ^ & Thome 
Holford clerico ^ salutem. Cum Eobertus Carter quandam peticionem 
versus abbatem monasterii sancti Aldelmi de Malmesbury Johannem 
Wliythypoll & Willelmum Carewe coram nobis in Consilio nostro nuper 
e>diibuit quodque eisdem Abbati Johanni & Willelmo per breuia nostra 
precepimus quod essent coram nobis in Consilio predicto ad certum 
diem iam preteritum sub certa pena in eodem breui contenta peticioni 
predicte responsuri ac idem Abbas adeo impotens sui existat quod 
vsque Curiam ConsiUi nostri ad diem ilium ad responsionem suam 
eidem peticioni fiendam absque maximo corporis sui periculo laborare 
non suiScit vt accepimus Nos statum eiusdem Abbatis pie compaci- 
entes ac de fidelitatibus vestris plenius confidentes dedimus vobis 
^coniunctim & diuigim potestatem'* ipsum Abbatem de & super materia 
peticionis predicte diligenter examinandi responsionem que suam 
recipiendi & in scriptis redigendi. Et ideo vobis mandamus quod 
viso tenore peticionis predicte quem vobis mittimus presentibus inter- 
clusum ad certos diem & locum quos ad hoc prouideritis ad prefatum 
Abbatem seu ipsum si commode laborare sufficiat coram vobis venire 

»' October 6, 1600. C. Smith, * Index,* i. 278). According to 

' According to Dugdale Thomas Aston, A. T. Lee, ' History of Tetbury * (1857), p. 

abbot of Cirencester, 1488-1504 (* Monast.' 218, the connexion of the family of Holford 

vi. i. 170) ; but he signs Itun, see p. 123 with this place did not begin until the 

infra, and qu. whether for Aston we should seventeenth century. Tetbury is five miles 

not read ' Alton.' In the * History and N.W. of Malmesbury. 
Antiquities of Cirencester ' (3rd ed. 1842), * Substituted in another hand for 

p. 106, the name is given as Ashton. words erased. * Dedimus potcstatem is a 

'^ Cirencester, a mitred abbey of writ whereby a commission is given to a 

Augustinian or Black Canons, founded by private man for the speeding of some act 

Henry 1 in 1117. Valued in 26 Henry 8 appertaining to a judge, and it is granted 

at a yearly revenue of 1,0512. 7s. Oi<2., Dugd. most commonly upon suggestion that the 

1.3.0. party which is to do something before a 

' Thomas Holford, clerk, of Tetbury, judge or in court is so feeble that he can- 

QloucesterBhire. Will proved 1506 (J. C. not travel.' Co wel, 'Interpr.' s. v. Dedimus. 






122 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

faciatis ac ipsum de & super materia peticionis predicte super sacra- 
mentum suum tactis per ipsum sacrosanctis dei euangeliis corporaliter ^ 
protestandum diligenter examinetis dictam que suam responsionem 
eidem peticioni fiendam recipiatis & vt predictum est in scriptis redi- 
gatis. Et cum illam sic ceperitis eam nobis in Consilium nostrum 
predictum vnacum tenore predicto ac nomine attornati quem pro eo 
habere voluerit ac toto facto vestro in hac parte in Octabis sancti 
michaelis proxime futuri ® vbicunque tunc fuerit ^ sub sigillis vestris 
distincte & aperte mittatis & hoc breue. Teste me ipso apud West- 
monasterium xij die Julii anno regni nostri sextodecimo.® 

Wabham.® 

Indorsed. Per Consilium. Eesponsio Thome abbatis Cirencestri- 
ensis & Thome Holford Clerici infranominati. 

Virtute istius breuis nobis directi venire fecimus coram nobis pre- 
fato Abbate & Thoma Holford infranominatum Abbatem Sancti 
Aldelmi de Malmesbury ac ipsum de & super materia peticionis in 
dicto breui specificate super sacramentum suum tactis per ipsum 
sacrosanctis dei Euangeliis corporaliter prestitum diligenter examina- 
uimus responsionem que suam eidem peticioni factam recepimus & 
in scriptis redegimus quas quidem responsionem & peticionem vnacum 
nomine attornati quem predictus Abbas de Malmesbury pro se habere 
voluerit infrascriptas domino Begi in consilium suum sub Sigillis 
nostris ^^ mittimus presentibus consutas prout interius nobis precipitur. 

c. This ys thanswere of thabbot of Malmysbury 
to the byll of Bobert Carter. 

1 The seid abbot seith that the said byll ys vncerten and insufficient 

I .' I and the mater therof determinable by the comen lawe wheroflf he 

I prayeth allowance and for declaracion of the trouth of the seid mater 

he seyth that he is and at the tyme of the matere comprised in the 

seid byll supposed to be done was seased of the maner of Newnton in 

^ ' It is called a corporal oath because Jorid. (1792), ii. 183. See also p. 218, infra, 

he toucheth with his hand some part of the On the other hand, it is to be noted that the 

Holy Scripture.' Cowel, s.v. Oath. petition is to the Lord Keeper (see p. xHii, 

• October 6, 1601. n. 4), and that Stodam, the attorney (p. 125), 

' Ubicunque tunc fuerit. This might was one of the two attorneys practising in 

appear to be a proceeding before the Council the Star Chamber. See p. 137, infra, 

and not before the statutory Court of the Star " 1601. 

Chamber. The form of writ given by Hud- • Master of the Rolls, February 13, 

son as issuing from the Star Chamber 1494-August 11, 1501, on which last date 

varies in this as in other particulars. It he became keeper of the Great Seal in place 

runs : ' Nosinde et consilium nostrum apud of Archbishop Deane. E. Foss, * Lives of 

Westmonasterium de toto facto vestro in the Judges,' v. 242. 

hac parte . . . certifioetis.* W. Hudson, »• The seals have disappeared. 
* Of the Court of Star Chamber,' in Collect. 



CARTEK l\ MALMYSBURY, ABBOT OF, AND OTHERS 123 

the Counte of Wiltes ^ in his demene as of Fee in the right of his seid 
monasterie and that the seid Bobert is vylleyne & bondman ^ regard- 
aunt ^ & belongyng to the seid maner, And that the same abbot & 
his predecessours haue byn seased of the seid Bobert & all his aun- 
cestours & blode * as of theire vylleyns & bondmen belongyng to the 
same maner out of tyme of mynde in the ryght of the seid monasterie, 
And because the seid Bobert wold not be iustyfied ^ by the seid nowe 
abbot the same abbot sued a writte of Natiuo habendo directe to the 
Shireffe of the Counte of Wiltes ® by vertue of whiche writte one 
Thomas Long esquier now Shireflf of the same Counte ' directed his 
Warant to the seid william Cary then beyng Baylyflf of the Burgh of 
Malmesburye Cristofer Capys Walter Mochegoode Bichard Chaunde- 
lere & other commaundyng them by the same in the kynges behalf to 
take the seid Bobert Carter with all his goodes & catalles and all his 
sequele and them to bryng to the seid now abbot by force of Whiche 
Writte and Warant the seid Baylyff Cristofer Capes Walter Moche- 
goode & other in the seid Warant specified in peasible manere in the 
seid vygyll of the blessed Trinite toke the body of the seid Bobert 
Carter then beyng in the hous of one Walter Estcourte in Malmesbury 



» A manor granted to the 


abbey by 


Athelstan in a.d. 081 (Dugd. 


Monast.' i. 


258). The constituent revenues derived 


from this manor are set forth in ibid. 


p. 203 as foUows : 




Newynton 


I. s, d. 


liedditus Assise 


9 2 


Kedditus Custumariorum 




Tenentium 


12 19 8 


Firmarii .... 


12 8 


Pannagium Porcorum . 


3 


Firmarii Terrarum 


10 


Porquisitiones Curie 


10 


Decime ... 


12 


Annua Pencio 


8 


Total revenues 282. 155. Od, 





In the next manor (Chareleton), in 
addition to the rents of customary tenants, 
there is an item ' Kedditus tenencium ad 
voluntatem domini.* These were probably 
tenants of the demesne, most likely bond- 
men. See I. S. Leadam, * The Inquisition 
of 1517,' Trans. R. Hist. Soc. (1892), N.8. 
vi. 219, 220, 255. It would appear, there- 
fore, that at the time of the valuation of 
1540 there were no bondmen at Newyn- 
ton, which suggests that the decree of the 
Star Chamber may have gone in favour of 
the plaintiff. 

' On the confusion of villains with 
bondmen by the Norman lawyers and the 
real distinctions between the two see ibid. 



passim. Also, id. * The Last Days of 
Bondage in England,* Law Quarterly Beview 
(1893), ix. 30, pp. 351-362. 

' As distinguished from ' villain in 
gross' (capitagius). See Trans. B. Hist. 
Soc. s.c, p. 194 and notes. 

* * Natives, or villains bom, had their 
pedigrees as well as the most noble among 
the peers. Such pedigrees were drawn up 
to prevent any fraudulent assertion as to 
freedom and to guide the lord in case he 
wanted to use the native's kin in prosecu- 
tion of an action de nativo habendo ' 
(Vinogradofif, p. 143). An example of such 
a pedigree is given ibid. Appendix x. p. 440. 

* Controlled. J. A. H. Murray, * Engl. 
Diet.' S.V. 

' ' A writ that lay to the sheriff for a 
lord whose villain claimed for his inheri- 
tance (and) run from him for the appre- 
hending and restoring him to his lord 
again.' Fitzh., Nat. Brev. f. 77. 

' Thomas Long of Draycot Ceme, son 
and heir of John Long by Margaret, 
daughter of Wayte (J. Aubrey, ' Wilt- 
shire,' edited by J. E. Jackson (Devizes, 
1802). T. L. married Margery, daughter of 
Sir Edward Darell of Littlecote, by whom 
he left three sons (J. Britton, * Beauties 
of England and Wales,' vol. xv. p. 584); 
knighted in 1501 (W. C. Metcalfe, < Book 
of Knights ' [1885], p. 80) ; Sheriff of Wilts 
in 1500 and 1500 (* List of Sheriffs,' P.B.O., 



124 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

aforeseid and immediatly after that the same day & yere in lyke 
peasible manere entred a close of pasture that the seid Eobert 
then occupied in Malmesbury aforeseid and the seid v bullokkes x 
kyne ix kalves liij shepe & viij lambes parcell of the seid goodes & 
catalles in the seid byll Specified then & there founde toke and the 
body of the seid Robert with the seid v bullokkes x kyne ix kalves 
liij shcfpe & viij lambes brought & delyuered to the seid nowe abbot 
as laufull was for them to do ** Whiche abbot the same Robert re- 
ceyued & imprisoned ^ and the same v bullokkes x kyne ix kalves liij 
shepe & viij lambes toke & kepte as his propre goodes and catalles as 
laufull was for hym to do. Without that the seid Roger late abbot of 
Malmesbury & his Co vent by there dede of manumyssyon manu- 
mysed or made Free the seid Thomas Carter John Carter or William 
Carter as in the seid byll is surmysed, And without that the seid 
John Ayle late abbot dymysed vnto the seid Robert ij meses for terme 
of his lyff and albe it ther hadde be ony suche dymyse as ther was 
not, or yf ther were ony suche reteyner in seruice as in the seid byll 
ys surmysed it is not materiall in the law to exclude therby the ryght 
of the seid nowe abbot & of his seid monasterie that thei haue to the 
seid Robert as there bondman, And without that ony dede off 
manumyssyon of the seid Thomas came to the handes of the seid 
Thomas Heorner Laurence or John WethipoU, And without that ony 
suche dede ys comme to the handes or kepyng of the seid nowe abbot, 
or that there were euer ony sotyll or Crafty meanes bitwene the same 
abbot and the seid Laurence & John WethipoU, And without that 
the seid Baylyflf^*^ Cristofer Capys & other in the seid byll specified in 
riotous wyse or in ony other maner were at the hous that the seid 
Robert occupied in Malmesbury in the seid vygyll of the blessed 
Trinite as also by the same byll is vntruly surmysed. And without 
that the same Baylyff Cristofer Capes & other in the seid byll speci- 
fied toke ^^ ony goodes and catalles of the seid Robert Carter other 
than in this answere be specified. And without that the seid nowe 

1898) ; died 1508, in which year his will was les membres entiers.* 

proved (J. C. C. Smith, * Index,' ii. 340) ; " * Bayliffs of Franchises be those that 

buried in Draycot church (Aubrey, p. 230). be appointed by every lord within his 

" * Ceux (serfs) ne poent rien purchaser liberty, to do such offices within his pre- 

forqe al oes lur scignur,' * Mirror of Jus- cincts as tlie bayliff errant doth at large in 

tices ' (Selden Soc. 1893). * Par ley de tere the county ' (T. Blount, ' Law Diet.' [1670]^ 

tut ceo qc le vileyn ad si est a soun s.v. Bayliflf). See also as to the office of 

seigneur.' Y. B. E. T. 13 Ed. 3 [17] p. 235, bailiff F. W. Maitland, * Township and 

cf. ibid. M. T. [54] p. 102, Brltton, ii. vii. 1. Borough ' (Cambridge, 18U8), pp. 77, 208. 

• Cf . the ' Mirror of Justices ' (Selden The abbots were lords of Malmesbury, Dugd. 

Roc. 1893), vii. 79 : * Ceux (serfs) poent les * Monast.' i. 263. 

seignurs firgir, ceppir, emprisoner, bat-re, e "An erasure of about 2 J inches in 

chastier a voluntie, sauve a euz les vies e length follows. 



CARTER V. MALMYSBURY, ABBOT OF, AND OTHERS 125 

abbot of Cruelte or of extorcious mynde caused the seid John Wethi- 
poU or ony other person in the seid byll specified or ony other riotous 
or mysruled person to go to the close that the seid Robert then also 
occupied as in the same byll is surmysed otherwise then in this 
answere is alleged, or without that the seid abbot or ony of his seid 
seruaunts be gyltye of ony ryot or of onythyng done contrary to the 
kynges peas, And ouer theis the seid abbot seythe that ouer the seid 
goodes and catalles in this answere abouespecified brought to hym 
by the vertue of the seid writte he lafte with the wyff & children of 
the seid Robert goodes & catall to the value of xx marcs ^* whiche be 
sufficient for there sustentacion as yet and the same abbot offerd to 
delyuer to them suche mylche kyen as he hadde from them toward 
there sustentacion ^^ whiche they refused to receve butyf they mought 
haue hadde all other the seid goodes and catallys,^^ And without that 
the seid Robert was by the seid nowe abbot or by ony person for hym 
so straytely imprisoned and kept as in the seid byll is surmysed. All 
whiche maters the seid nowe abbot is redy to prove as this Court 
wyll award and prayeth to be dysmyssed out of the same with his 
reasonable costes & expenses susteyned in this behalff &c. 

Thabbat of the monastery of Seynt aldelme of 
Malmesbury aboue named putteth in his 
place & maketh for his attourney William 
Stodam,^^ to defend ayenst Robert Carter in 
the mater comprised in the byll hervnto 
annexed. 



Thomas Itun ^^ 
Thomas Holforde 



Indorsed. Sherched the 13 may 
anno Elizabethae 18.^^ 



" 13Z. 6s. Sd. •» See Introd., p. cxxvii. 

'^ A similar spirit of resistance was 
exhibited by the alleged bondman William 
Netheway when amends were ofifered by Sir 
Edward Gorge who claimed his goods as 
belonging to his bondman. * Select Cases 
in Court of Requests ' (Selden Soc. 1898), 
p. 45. 

"* See B, p. 121, n. 1, supra. 

•" The name of a family at Burford, 
Oxfordshire (see J. C. C. Smith, * Index of 
Wills '). The name of this person, however, 
does not occur in John Fisher's * History of 
Burford ' (1861). Cf. p. 134, infra. W.Hud- 
son, in his ' Treatise of the Court of Star 
Chamber ' (1792), p. 179, mentions ' Stood- 
ham the attorney ' for the city of York ats. 
Danby in 10 Hen. 7. 

*^ This indorsement suggests that in- 
quiry was made as to the status of the 



family of Carter at this time (1576) with 
a view -to their manumission. Unfor- 
tunately the manumissions of serfs on 
Crown lands, then general, have not yet 
been sorted in the Record Office. That 
such an inquiry should be made, if it were 
made, appears to involve the conclusion 
that in this case judgement was given for 
the defendant, but see n. 1, supra. In 
1575 (Pat. RoU, 17 Eliz. pt. 2, ni. 39) is 
a grant by which Queen Elizabeth gives 
to Sir Henry Lee, knight, as a reward 
for his services, the fines and compo- 
sitions that he could extract from any 
two hundred of her bondmen and bond- 
women for the manumission of them- 
selves, their families, and their lands. 
Second letters patent proceeded to present 
Sir H. Lee with the fines and compositions 
from a hundred more of the Queen's bond- 



126 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



tru(e) * (t)hat he had hard say or not, and thabbo(t) ' * ^ (de)- 
maimdid ^ of this depon(en)t^ what it was and then this deponent 
(did s)*aye, Sir, I her say that ye clajrme Robert here now present to 
be * ^ (bo)ndman.* And the said Abbot answcrd, I wote not 
yet whether I will or not. Then said this deponent to the abbot agen 
as he saith ^ on this forme ^ my Lord he is as fre as the best man 
that is here, and ye do him wrong and ye make any clayme to him 
for I haue seen haneled and hard red a fayre manumission vnder the 
Covent seale of this place made to Thomas Carter grauntfader to this 
poor man. Then stode therbie in the hall where this communieacion 
was oone Thomas White yet a lyve, husband man, and he said then 
and there the said abbot hering it, I wote righte wele that my fadre 
lent the said Thomas Carter x li. for to purehaee the said manumission 
with. Which w^ordes this spokyn, the said Robert Carter then and there 
praied the said Abbot if he wold make any clajrme to him for his 
bondman that he wold take him evyn then, for he wold abide it, and 
the Abbot answerd. Nay, I will not medle with the now that I haue 
herd thies men speke. And nomore he dyd as this deponent saith 
vntill the said Robert lay so soore seke that he was shreven and 
howseld ^ and then thabbot send his folkes to his hous and pastures 
and tooke all the goode that he might come by aswell catall as other 
of the said Robertes more « rp^^^^ ^erne. 

Furthre this deponent examyned how the said Dede of manumission 
came to the keping of the said Water Heme ^ 

saith that it was *^ *' a pledge f •^ « « *2 
John •^ #7 •/ fadre to the said Robert •^ *^ 
*^ *^ Tho(ma)s2 Carter, and that appered by a booke 
th(at) ^ the said W •^ (m)ade^ in his life time in whiche he 
wrote all his d * ^ *e * to him and also thos that he himself 
ought. And seith that in the same boke the same Water * wrote all 
suche pledges as he had of any persons, and for what somme thay lay 

men and bondwomen. I. S. Leadam, * Last of Castle Ck)mbe in 1486 where the ous- 

Days of Bondage in England/ Law Quar- tomary tenants rejected the lord's claim 

terly Review (October, 1893), ix. 36, p. 357. upon the bondman's estate. ' Hist, of the 

* These depositions are fragmentary. Manor of Castle Combe,' p. 223, Trans. B. 
written on the front and dorse of two folios. Hist. Soc. (1892), N.S. vi. p. 251. 

* MS. torn. '~' Interlined. * In the plaint the castodian of the deed 

* Communicated, from 'housel,' the is named Thomas Hemer (p. 119, supra), 
consecrated elements. Qu. is this Walter Heume of Tetbury, 

» This bondman had not the protection whose will was proved in 1486 (J. C. C. 
afforded by a customary tenancy. See the Smith, * Index,' i. 269). ? 
case of a bondman (* nativus') of the manor ^ MS. indecipherable. 



CARTER V, MALMYSBURY, ABBOT OF, AND OTHERS 127 

and this booke this deponent had long in his possession after the deth 
of the said water, and he saw and red in the same booke that the 
said John * Carter had borowed of the said water vpon pledge of a 
manumission to the said Thomas his fadre made vnder the Govent 
seale of the monasterie of Malmesberie xj s. and this is true by his oath 
and in perell of his soul. 

Thomas Hebne. 

John Newman of Tetberie aforsaid husbandman of thage of Ixxv 
yere as he saith sworne and examyned vpon the said bill and In- 
terrogatories aforsaid deposith that he was seruaunt to I'homas Carter 
grauntfadre to Robert Carter the now defendaunt vpon a Ix^* yeres 
goone Utle lesse and he know that his said maistre then bond to the 
house of Malmesberie was very desirous to be free ant to be manumised 
howbe it that he was very aged and had not many yeres to lyve, yet 
natheleas he had greate mynd that his heires and blode aftre him 
might be free and that he might be free or he died and if he might 
bring that aboute it wold be more joifull to him then any worlelie 
goode. Such mynde this deponent knew him of bi thes wordes that 
he herd him speke diuers and many times iiij or v yere before his 
death. For which purpos the same Thomas Carter made diuers 
frindes dwelling with the then (abbot) ^ of Malmesberie in his house 
hold whos names were Watkyn Ev(ered)e^ and Jenkyn Sydynham 
gentlemen, to be meanys and to ent(er i)n^ communicacion with 
thabbot thair Lord for a m(anumi)ssion^ for the said Thomas. And 
in conclusion the said Abbot * ^ agreable that the said Thomas 
shold be manumised bi him and his Covent and also all his heires 
aftre him. What som the same Thomas shold pay for his manu- 
mission this deponent is not now remembred albe it the said Watkyn 
Everede and Jenkyn Sydynham sent worde to the said Thomas Carter 
of all the somme, but this deponent knowth righte wele that oone 
NichoU white then of Asshlegh fadre to Thomas white of Cheggelow 
fast bi asshley when a lyve sent to the said Thomas Carter to the 
payment for his said manumission x U., and that this deponent knowith 
for that the said Thomas white come fro his said fadre to Newnton fe 
within a myle of Tetbere to this deponentes said maistre Thomas 
Carter with the said x li., and this deponent saw the money laid out 
vpon a boord in Newntons courte bi the same i homas White and 
there it was told in gold and grotes and ^ after that ^ that the same 

* Substituted for * Thomas ' which is • Interlined for ' it delivere ' struck 

struck through. John was the father of through, 
the plaintiff (p. 119, supra). 



128 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Thomas White deliuered it to the said Thomas Carter in his fadres 
name, and there they appointed a day when it shold be repaid to the 
said Nicholl White of which day this deponent is not now remembred 
albe it this money was brofte to the said Thomas Carter on a Wensday 
and on the next morow thursday the same Thomas Carter took iiij of 
his principal! and hed neyburs that is to say John Parson a Landed 
man Richard Porter John Cossham Hopkyn * ^ ge Hugh 
F * ^ * ^ then ^" went to Malmesberre to the * ^ * ^ 
and paid •^ •^ *' Marbray^nhe *^ •^ *' 
*^ *^ manumission to *^ ** *^ *^ 

^* thair Coven t seale the said Thomas Ca(rter) ^ and all his (heire)s^ 
and posterite and that this deponent knowith as (he sait)h'' for 
he was there present ^'wayting on his said h*' and saw the money 
paid and told opinlie vpo the boorde in the hall of thabbay but how- 
mich he is not now remembred. This deponent saw ^' also the dede 
of manumission sealid with the Govent seale, for the said Thomas and 
his heires and so he herd it red opinlie in the hall aforsaid bi the said 
abbot then being.^"* What thabbotes name was this deponent is not now 
remembred of as he saith, and aftre that the same abbot made the 
high priour ther ** ther also rede it opinlie in the same hall, And that 
doone, the same Abbot and priour set both their handes to the same 
dede and it deliuerd opinlie ^^to the handes of the same Thomas ^^ and 
in the name of *^thaimselff and of ^^ the hoole Covent there for thaire 
true dede and this doone, thay that were the said Thomas Garters 
frindes went forth of thabbay into the town of malmesberre and there 
thay yete a cople of Capons which this deponent had broufte bi his 
masters commaundement fro Newnton aforsaid and that doone the said 
I'homas Carter and all his said Neighburs rode home to thair houses and 
on the sonday folowyng, at the parsons hous of Newnton whos name was 
Sir Hugh ^^ a northern man ^' in presence of the substaunce of the 
parissh there then for this cause assembled ^^ at the desire of the said 
Thomas Carter,^^ the said dede was opinlie red and declared to the 
vnderstanding of all thaim that were there bi the same Sir Hugh and 
all the people there cnioyed and were glad that the said Thomas was 

*" Beading doubtful. '* The original deposition continues ' his 

" This is another fragment of the name was Dan Thomas Bristow.' This has 

depositions probably taken at the hearing been struck through and the words in the 

of the case by commissioners. It is written text interlined. See A, p. 118, n. 3, supra, 
upon the front and dorse of two faded and '^ Interlined above the ' ther ' following, 

mutilated folios of paper. "*'• Interlined in substitution for 'for 

12-is This is interlined and stops abruptly thair dede and the covenauntes ther' 

at h. struck through. 

•* Substituted for * herde * struck through. " '*' Interlined. 



CARTER l\ MALMYSBURY, ABBOT OF, AND OTHERS 129 

^^manumysed he ^^ and his ^^ heires and were glad therof and the next ^" 
night the same Thomas *' ** (m)ade* a goode fe(as)t^^ 
for^*^ bis parson and after ^^ •^ *' *« *« •s 
Vikar >« at ^^^ * » • ^ dede bec(ause) ^ *' • ' 



MAYNE AND OTHERS v, GIBBES AND ANOTHER.' 

To the King our soneraigne lord And to the lordos 
of his moost honourable Counsail 

1501 Humbly sheweth and piteously complayneth vnto your highnesse 
your daily Oratour and pover subjiettes William Mayne Chapeleyne 
John Bony f aunt ^ and Johane his Wyf of your Cite of Exeestre in 
your Countie of Deuonshire That Where as your said Oratours and 
theyre Aunccstours hath bee peasibly seased in and of iij tenementes, 
iij Gardyns in great Totnisse, iiij Acres of Medow in Folotyn lane, 
viij Acres of Medow in Northford within the Maner of Dortyngton 
and V Acres of Pasture in Tikcombe in the said Countie of Deuen in 
their demeane As of Fee, Vnto now of late, that oone William Gibbes ' 
Esquier Thomas Pendregyst with many othre moo to the Numbre of 
X or xj persons to your said Oratours vnknowen, Vpon the Thursday 
next aftere our lady day thassumpcion * noue last past, the xvj"* yere of 
your moost noble Reigne ^ into the said tenementes entred. In which 
tenementes oone William Helyer mercer dwelleth and with force of 
Armes That is to say With Billes ^' Bowes Arrowes & Swerdes toke 
and bare awey certan Sylkes and lynnyn cloth ' And put the said 
William Helyer out at his dorres there and bare awey his keyes. And 
felled and cutt down many Okes in the said Medowes, And the same 
Okes caried awey riottously and forcibly. And yet soe contynueth in 
theyr malicious demeanour, That your said Oratours dare not comme 
to the Town for toccupye theyre said landes and Rentes As they 
haue doone befor tyme by the space of A C. yere and more. For feare 
and jeopardy of theyre lyves, Without your especial grace and pitie 

'**"* MS. much injured. Tottenes, also of a wood in Fenton of the 

' S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 85. manor of Dertyngton. The other places 

' See Hewyt and others v. London, mentioned in the plaint do not occur in the 

mayor of, p. 81, n. 12. Inquisition. John Gybbys was perhaps the 

* William Gibbes, Gibbys, or Gybbys, John Gibbs who was bailiff of Exeter in 

son of William and grandson of John 1470 and 1477. R. Izacke, * Antiquities of 

Gybbys, bom in 1471 (Inq. p. m. Hen. 7, i. Exeter' (1724), pp. 88, 89. 
303). The Inquisition found that the * The feast of the Assumption of the 

grandfather, whose heir William Gibbes Virgin was August 15. * 1501. 

was, died seised, inter alia, of certain * See Walterkyn v. Letice, p. 165, n. 5. 

messuages and lands of the clear yearly ' A principal commodity of the trade of 

value of ten marks (6Z. 135. id.) in Great Exeter; see p. 81 and foil. 



130 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



bee vnto thaym shwed in this behalue. In consideracion whereof It 
Wol please your highnesse the premisses graciously considered to 
graunt your lettres of priue Seal to be direct to the said William 
Gibbes and Thomas Pendregyst Comaundyng theym by the same 
tappere At your Palais of Westminster in the xv of saint Martync 
next commyng ^ and vndre a certen peyne ther taunswere to the pre- 
misses. This at the Reuerence of God And in way of charite. 

xxj die Octobris anno regni regis Henrici vij xvij.-' Responsabile ^*' 
apud Westmonasterium xv martini sub pena utriusque eorum c. 
marcarum.^^ 

Indorsed. ^^ ces xvij. 

Decretum est Privatum Sigillum fieri et ad com- 
parandum '^ vt infra petitur. 
R. Rydon.^^ 

Willelmus Mayne Capellanus Johannes Bonyfaunt & 
Johana vxor eius contra Willelmum Gibbes Armi- 
gerum et Thomam Pendregist. 
In modern hund, Mayne & al v. Gibbs. 



A. 



KEBELL V. VERNON.» 



1502 To prove Wyllyam Vernon brodur to sir Henry Vernon knyght ^ 
gylty off felous ' takyng & Rauishement of margaret Kebell * Wedow & 



" November 25, 1501. 

• 1501. 

"* Returnable. 

" mi 13s. 4d. 

>2 MS. torn. 



Sic. 



'* See Shrowesbury, Abbot of, v. Bailiffs 
of, p. 193, n. 2. 

• S.C.P. Hen. 8, Bundle 19, No. 71. 
Sorted by mistake into the bundles of 
proceedings temp. Hen. 8. 

' Sir Henry Vernon was the eldest of 
seven sons of Sir William Vernon byMargaret 
Pype of Spemore (* Diet. Nat. Biog.', Vernon, 
Sir Richard, Treasurer of Calais and Con- 
stable of England, d. 1467). See Nichols, 
* Hist. Leic' III. ii. 985. The family were 
perhaps originally Lancastrian in politics, 
for on Dec. 3, 1461, Sir William obtained a 
pardon of all offences committed by him 
before November 4 (Pat. R. Ed. 4, p. 81). 
He and his son Henry were sunmioned in 
1463 by writ of Privy Seal to answer a 
complaint that they, at the head of a party 
of men, had broken open the closes and 
houses of John Skelley and Richard Baweke- 



well, assaulted them, and carried off their 
goods, rents, corn, beasts and chattels 
(ib. p. 304). As they failed to obey the 
Privy Seal, a commission was issued to 
inquire into the complaint (ib.). Henry 
Vernon presumably made his peace with 
the King, for on October 18. 1470, he was 
nominated on a commission of oyer and 
terminer for the county of Derby (ib. 
p. 248) and on a commission of array for 
the same county on March 7, 1472 (ib. 
p. 349). He was nominated a commissioner 
to inquire into certain ' farms for lands 
granted & divers other sums of money & 
yearly profits ' in Derbyshire on Ajjril 18, 
1473 (ib. 408), and from 1469 to 1476 he 
was constantly upon the commission of the 
peace for the county (ib. 611). He was 
returned to Parliament as Knight of the 
Shire for Derby on January 8, 1478 (Members 
of Parliament, Pari. Pap. 1878, lxii. i. 363). 
He probably rallied to Henry 7, for, though 
his name does not appear at Boswortli, he 
was one of the leaders of the royal army 
which defeated John de la Pole, Earl of 



KEBELL V. VERNON 



131 



off the felous reseyuyng by the seyd Wyllyam Vernon off Eoger 
Vernon ^ & dyiiers odur partiez previe to the rauishement. 



Lincoln, at Stoke on June 6, 1487 (' Hen- 
ricQS Vemonus ex Pek,* Polydore Vergil, 
xxvi. p. 728, ed. Leyden, 1651). On Decem- 
ber 23, 1488, he was nominated a commis- 
sioner of masters for the expedition to 
Brittany (Campbell, ' Mat.' ii. 386). In 
1489 he was dabbed a Knight of the Bath 
(W. C. Metcalfe, » Book of Knights,' p. 21) 
on the occasion of the creation of Prince 
Arthur Prince of Wales. Thenceforth he 
was attached to the Prince and was a 
member of the Council of Wales. He was 
a commissioner to raise a benevolence 
towards the expenses of the war with 
France in 1491 (July 7) (Rym. ' Foed.' xii. 
446). Polydore Vergil (lib. xxvi. p. 766) 
mentions him as among the knights who 
marched under Edward Stafford, Duke of 
Buckingham, against Perkin Warbeck's 
army at Taunton in September 1497. He 
was a signatory of the marriage articles 
between Prince Arthur and Katharine of 
Aragon in 1500, and high sheriff of Derby- 
shire in 1604 (S. Rayner, * Haddon Hall ' 
[1836], pp. 28, 29). On June 25, 21 Hen. 7 
(1505), he was summoned before the Court of 
Exchequer for forcible entry into the lands 
of Ralph Pole in Spondon and Chadderden, 
Derbyshire, the issue of which process 
does not appear (MS. B. O., Exch. K. B. 
Mem. Roll, T. T. 21 Hen. 7, m. xxiii). He 
was one of the trustees of Henry 7's will (Rot. 
Pari. vi. 522 a). He died April 3, 1515, and 
was buried at Tong, the castle of which he 
rebuilt in brick (J. Leland, * Itin.' vii. 31, 
W. Camden, ' Britannia ' [ed. R. Gough, 
1800], iii. 29). He married the Lady Ann 
Talbot, daughter of John Talbot, second 
earl of Shrewsbury. She died May 17, 1494 
(Nichols, * Hist, of Leicestershire,' III. ii. 
986*). The pedigree in R. Gough 's * Sepul- 
chral Monuments,' ii. 264, makes Sir Henry 
Vernon an only son of William Vernon by 
Margaret daughter of Lord Ferrers, and 
grandson of Sir William Vernon and 
Margaret Pype. This the present case shows 
to be incorrect, and though the writer of 
the article in the ' Diet. Nat. Biog.' specifies 
Gough's as one of * the most correct pedi- 
grees,' it is certainly untrustworthy, for no 
* Roger ' Vernon occurs in it, and it is to be 
observed that in his account of the family 
the writer of the article does not follow it 
(vide supra). See J. Nichols, 'Hist, of 
Leicestershire,' III. ii. 985*. 

* For 'felonous,' a form of felonious. 
It was felony by 3 Hen. 7, c. 2 (1487), 
'An Acte agaynst taking awaye of women 
agaynst their willes.' 

* Widow, as appears later, of Thomas 



Kebell, serjeant at law, who died in 1500. 
A brief abstract of his will is given in H. 
Nicolas, ' Testamenta Vetusta,' p. 440, from 
which it appears that he was twice married. 
He is described in the Registry of the Pre- 
rogative Court of Canterbury as of Humber- 
ston, Leicester. The name is there spelt 

* Kebell,' but in Nicolas * Kebill.' He was 
the son of Walter Kebell, whom W. Burton 
(' Description of Leicestershire ' [1622], p. 
139) calls * that famous sergeant at law in 
the raigne of King Henry the Seauenth.' His 
name is first found in the Commission of the 
Peace for Leicestershire on October 24, 1474 
(Pat. Rolls Ed. 4, p. 618), an office which 
from this time throughout the reigns of 
Edward 4 and Richard 3 he continu- 
ously held (Pat. Rolls, 1476-85, p. 563). A 
person of his name sat in Parliament for 
the borough of Lostwithiel in 1478 (Mem- 
bers of Parliament, p. 363). He appears to 
have been a Yorkist in politics, for on Dec. 
10, 1483, after the abortive insurrection 
organised by Buckingham, he was nomi- 
nated a commissioner to inquire into 

* treasons, insurrections & rebellions' in 
Leicestershire (Pat. Rolls, Richard 3, p. 
393). He was also a commissioner of 
subsidy for the county in the same year 
(ib. 396), and a commissioner of array for 
the county on May 1, 1484 (ib. 400), and on 
December 8 following, in anticipation of the 
invasion of Henry Tudor, earl of Richmond. 
He was put upon a commission to try 
coinage offences in the western and mid- 
land counties, among them Leicestershire, 
on May 25, 1485 (ib. p. 544). According to 
Burton, who was a member of the Inner 
Temple, Thomas Kebell *was called ser- 
jeant on Nov. 20, 1486, and became king's 
Serjeant in 1499 ' (see J. Nichols, ' Hist, of 
Leicestershire' [1800], III. i. 270). Foss 
(' Lives of the Judges,' v. 16) gives 1494 
as the date of his call as serjeant. None 
of these dates can be correct, for on 
Jan. 30, 1487, in the grant of the cus- 
tody of the lands in Leicestershire of 
the late John Kebeel during the minority 
of his son George, he is styled Thomas 
Kebeel, gentleman (Campbell, 'Mat.' ii. 
113), while on Dec. 15, 1487, he is styled 
Thomas Kebeell, serjeant at law (ib. 
p. 214). The date of his call as serjeant 
may therefore have been Nov. 20, 1487. 
Further, on Nov. 10, 1488, he is styled ' one 
of the king's Serjeants at law,' being nomi- 
nated to inquire into certain complaints of 
the king's officers and tenants of Tutbury, 
in the duchy of Lancaster, agamst the abbot 
of Burton (ib. p. 361). His appointment 

K 2 



132 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



First, the seyd margaret seyth that she was broght by Roger Vernon 
& dyuers odur Contrarie to her mynd & good wyll from blore in the 
Countee off derby ^ to Henry columbell ys place in the same Countee ' 
& on Candylmas day last past ® sehe was broght by the seyd Roger & 
dyuers odur to a manor place off sir Henry Vernon callyd Sheyll in the 
Countee off leycester ® where in duellyth on Wyllyam Vernon brodur 
to the seyd sir Henry & the seyd Wyllyam Vernon ^" with owt the dore 
resceyuyd the seyd Roger Vernon margaret Kebell & odur dyuers 
partiez preve to the felous takyng a wey off the seyd margaret & 
Wyllyam Vernon & Roger toke the seyd margaret by the armez & 
broght her to a chamber where in was a feyr fyre redy made a fore 
the Cummyng off the seyd margarett & by cause the fyre brend *^ not 
clere the seyd wyllyam Vernon was very angry. 

Item the seyd margaret seyth that when the seyd Roger Vernon & 
Wyllyam had broght the seyd margaret to her chamber they departyd 
& walkyd down in gret Counsell. Whydur they walkyd the seyd 
margaret can not tell and immediatly aftur ther departyng Game the 
Wyff off the seyd Wyllyam Vernon to the seyd margaret & askyd off 
the seyd margaret what thyng shuld cause the seyd margaret to be 
so sad & hevy and furtheremore sche askyd off the seyd margaret 



as King's Serjeant so soon after the 
accession of Henry 7 suggests that he 
was among those Yorkists who abandoned 
the cause of Richard 3. In 1489 he was 
put upon the commission of the peace by 
the new king (Campbell, * Mat.' ii. 480). 
He was nominated by Henry 7 in 1496, 
in company with a number of personages 
of the highest distinction, a feoffee of cer- 
tain lands to the use of the king's will 
(Hot. Pari. vi. 510 b). His wives' Christian 
names, as his will shews, were Ann and 
Margery. Nichols, who only knows their 
surnames, gives Bathorp as that of his 
first, Eyton of his second vnte (* Leicester- 
shire,' III. i. 273). He appears to have 
acquired a large fortune at the bar. 
Nichols (p. 270) enumerates his lands in 
Leicestershire, including six manors, from 
an inventory in the archiepiscopal registry. 
His widow was, therefore, a wealthy woman. 

^ A son of Sir Henry Vernon, as appears 
presently, not mentioned in the pedigrees. 
Bee n. 2, supra. 

* Now in N.E. Staffordshire, less than a 
mile from the borders of Derbyshire. At 
this time the manor appears to have been 
held by the family of Bassett or Basset. 
8. Erdeswick, * Survey of Staffordshire ' 
(ed. T. Harwood, 1844), p. 486 ; cf. W. C. 
Metcalte, 'Book of Knights,' p. 61, 'Sir 
(? William) Basset of Blowre ' knighted 1529. 



' Lord of the manor of Darley, about 
five miles S.E. of Bakewell, Derbyshire, and 
about twelve miles N.N.E. of Blore. D. and 
S. Lysons, * Derbyshire ' (1817), pp. cxxiii, 
98 ; Harl. Soc. xv. 183 ; • Genealogist ' (1882), 
vi. 143. 

" February 2, 1502. 

* Sheyll. In 'Domesday' Scella; in 
* Testa de Nevill ' (1240) Scheles and Scheyl, 
but in other contemporary documents 
Sheyle and Seile. Now Seale. The manor 
of Church Sheyle or Nether Seile was held by 
the family of Pipe, until it passed into the 
Vernon family by the marriage of Sir Wil- 
liam Vernon, of Haddon, with Margaret 
Pipe. But the Vemons had held land in the 
manor of Over Seale since the time of John, 
and acquired that manor in 1427. In 21 
Ed. 4, and again in 2 Bichard 3, Henry 
Vernon acquired other lands in Sheyle 
(Nichols, * Leicestershire,' III. ii. 986*). Sir 
Henry's eldest son, Bichard, succeeded to 
his lands in Sheyle (ib.). 

^^ W. V. may be inferred to have been 
living here as early as 21 Ed. 4, when 
Henry Vernon, esquire, made him his 
attorney to take seisin from Thomas Brad- 
shaw of Tyddeswall of lands infra domini- 
cum de Sheyle and Sheyle Hide. Nichols, 
III. ii. 986*. 

" Burnt. 



KEBELL t\ VERNON 133 

whedur Roger Vernon had takyn her Contrarie to her mynd & good 
wyll & the seyd margaret sey th that sche seyd that Eoger Vernon had 
takyn the seyd margaret contrarie to here mynd & wyll & that 
he schuld repent yff euer the seyd margaret Cam to her libertee 
furthermore the seyd margaret seyth that the Wyflf off Wyllyam 
Vernon desyryd the seyd margaret to haue pite and Compassion on 
the seyd Roger & not to vndo hym for euer. 

Item the seyd margaret seyth that the Wyff of Wyllyam Vernon 
departyd from the seyd margaret & went to the seyd Roger Vernon & 
Wyllyam & seyd to them that hyt was pitee that the seyd Boger 
Vernon levyd by cause that the seyd Roger toke a wey any good 
Gentylwoman as the seyd margaret ys contrarie to her mynd & wyll. 

Item the seyd margaret seyth that the Wyff off Wyllyam Vernon 
Came to her & schewyd what sche had seyd to Roger Vernon & 
Wyllyam her husbond and inmediatly aftur Cam the seyd Roger 
Vernon in to the chamber to the seyd margaret & seyd Alas 
mastres Wyl hjrt be no bettur yit I mervell gretly that ye wyll schew 
yowr mynd to suche a strong strumpett & a hore as sche ys for sche 
Can kepe no Councell & al that ye doo ys to vndoo me for euer & with 
that the seyd margarett seyth that the seyd Roger wept very fast and 
the seyd margaret seyth that sche seyd sche wold do so en eny place 
where so euer sche Came & wold not let for no man. 

Item the seyd margaret seyth that on the moroo next aftur 
Candylmas dey last past ^* yerly ^' in the mornyng the seyd Roger 
Vernon & Wyllyam causyd a preest to syng masse in the chamber a 
fore the seyd margaret & the seyd Roger Vernon and Wyllyam Came 
in to the chamber where as the seyd margaret was knelyng & wept & 
made gret lamentacion & sorow & that the seyd Roger Vernon & 
Wyllyam see & hard the wepyng and lamentacion made & there they 
hard masse & when masse was endyd the seyd Roger Vernon & 
Wyllyam went to gedur to a wyndow & there they talkyd to gedur the 
space off an owr in gret Concell what hyt was the seyd margaret Can 
not tell but as sche supposyth hyt was for her takyng a wey for in- 
mediatly the seyd Roger Vernon and Wyllyam send vppe to london 
on Jhon Alsoppe ^^ to dyuers off*^ the fryndys off the seyd Roger 
Vernon for to labur for hym in the mater & the seyd margaret seyth 
at that tyme the seyd Wyllyam Vernon was redy to ryde & the seyd 
Roger Vernon shewyd to the seyd margaret that the seyd Wyllyam 

'2 I.e. Feb. 3, Festival of St. Blasias. shire, about ten miles S.W. of Haddon. 

" Early. See the pedigree in S. Glover, • Hist, of 

»* Probably the second son of John Derby ' (edited by T. Noble, 1829), ii. 21. 
Alsopp of Alsopp in the Dale, W. Derby- '^ * hys fryndys * struck through. 



134 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

Vernon schuld goo to Haddon to hys ^*' fadur & then the sayd Roger 
Vernon & Wyllyam toke the seyd margaret by the armez & broght 
her to her hors the whyehe be eausez sufficient to prove the seyd 
Wyllyam gylty off the premissez. And the seyd margaret besekyth 
yowr good lordschyppes that the seyd Wyllyam may be put to Answere 
to the premissez & that the seyd sir Henry Vernon bryng in the seyd 
Wyllyam Vernon for he ys continualy with the seyd sir Henry Vernon 
and he aydyth Confortyth & resceuyth the seyd Wyllyam the whych 
ys felony e in hyt selff.*^ 

Indorsed, This bill my lord Chaunceller dehuered to me W. 
Stodham *** in the sterre chambre vpon Wednysday 
the xvij^ day of Juyn 
Termino Trinitatis Anno regni regis xvij" *** 
Margareta Keble vidua contra Henricum Vernon Ot alios. 

B. Interrogatoriez betwyx Henry Vernon knyght And margaret 
Kebell late Wyff off Thomas Kebell on off the seriantes 
at the la. 

Imprimis yffe * the seyd margaret were conveyd &. reseuyd loggyd 
or confortyd at any manour or placys off the seyd sir Henry or at 
any off the fryndys oft* the seyd or seruantes off the seyd sir Henry. 

Item yff ^ Wyllyam Vernon brodur to sir Henry Vernon came or 
Any message from Roger Vernon concernyng the takyng a wey off 
the seyd margaret or that the seyd sir henry had any knolegge by the 
seyd Wyllyam vernon off the felous takyng a wey off the seyd margaret. 

Item yff* sir Henry Vernon Ayded confortyd or procuryd or 
concellyd Wyllyam Vernon that the seyd Wyllyam shuld schew to 
Roger Vernon that he schuld Convey the Company" by the manour 
placez And liggynges^ off sir Henry Vernon & to the marchez off 
Walez or vn to Any odur place. 

Item yfe ^ the seyd sir henry vernon Abbettyd Comfortyd Aydyd 
procuryd or receuyd * the seyd Roger or Any off hys Company prevy 
to the rauischyng off the seyd margaret in any place to take a wey 
the seyd margaret. 

•« I.e. Roger's. >" See p. 125, n. 16, and p. 137, n. 13. 

»' This is true. The Act 3 Hen. 7, c. 2, »• 1502. 

lays down * that such takyng procuryng and • * \Vhether * struck through, 

abettyng to the saine, and also receyvyng - Presumably the escort of a hundred 

wetyngly the sanie Woman so taken armed horsemen. See Introd., p. cxiii. 
ayenst her Will and knowyng the same, " From *ligge,' to lie down, a North 

be fclonye, and that such mysdoers takers country word. See J. O.Halli well, 'Archaic 

and procuratours to the same, and receytours Diet.' 

knowyng the said offence, in forme aforseid ' The words of the statute. See n. 17, 

be hensfurth reputed and juged as prinoi- supra, 
pall felons.' 



KEBELL V. VERNON 135 

Item yflfe * the seyd sir henry concellyd the seyd Roger to take a 
wey the seyd margaret or that the said sir henry relevyd the seyd 
Eoger or Any off hys Company with hys Concell or with hys money in 
the Conveyng a wey off the seyd margaret to the marches off Walez 
or in her leying in the marchez off Walez'* or in Any odur place. 

Item yff the seyd sir henry send any letturs to the seyd Roger in 
hys beyng in the marchez of Walez or in Any odur place confortyng 
the seyd Roger. 

Item yjBf the seyd sir Henry procuryd mouyd or styrd the seyd 
margaret to Conceall & excuse the seyd Roger hys Company or Any 
oflF them prevy to the rauischement off the seyd margaret off her 
felouz takyng a wey & rauischement in any place. 

Item yjBf the seyd Roger were relevyd by the seyd sir henry with 
Any oflf hys seruantes or fryndys or aydyd or strenght.^ 

c. The sayng of Edward Capull.^ 

The seid Edward seithe that at the fyrst comyng to london of 
Margett Vernon late the wyflfe of Thomas KepbuU that she dyssired 
hym to speyke with sir henre Vernon and dyssire hym to come and 
ispeyke with hyr, which so dyd and at the fyrst metyng the seid sir 
henre seid she was welcome bot he wyst not whedur he myght sey 
welcome doghter or maistres, and she seid doghter and it pleased 
hym and so I trust ye will take me and be good fadur to your son 
and me and the seid sir henre seid, so that ye be as ye say, the Eyng 
pleased, I will be contentt. 

Item the seid Edward seith that^ the seid Margett seid to hym 
^betwix chepyngnorton and Islep vpon a down^ '•and also in a 
bote betwix the town' & grenwech^ that she was as well contentt 
with Roger Vernon as any woman in the world was with hyr 

* The object of taking his captive to who here gives evidence for the defence, 

the Marches of Wales was to protect him- is a dififerent person. The name Gapell 

self from justice by interest with some one is written Cabell in * Paston Letters/ iii. 326. 

of the Lords Marchers, who claimed that I have not been able to identify this 

the king's writ did not run there. See person. 

the case of Straunge v. Kenaston, Introd., ^ The words * at all tymes,' which 

pp. xciii-xcv. The Marches of Wales were followed, have been struck through with 

the common haven of abductors. See *Rot. a pen in the same ink as the subsequent 

Pari.' iv. 497-98, v. 16, &c. interlineations, and marginal note 4-4. 
" Strengthened. *~* Interlined. The order in which the 

' From the report of the case * Vernon places are named and the fact that the 

V. Keble,' an action for conspiracy arising direction is from N.W. to S.E. show that 

out of this abduction, heard in the King's this occurrence was on the return journey, 

Bench in 1506, it appears that E. Keble presumably to London, 
was a person who endeavoured to rescue *-* Marginal. 

Margaret Keble. See Introd., p.cxiii. It is ^ An early use of the phrase, 

therefore to be inferred that Edward Capull, 



136 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

husbonde, and that he dyuers tymes examyned hyr to prove hyr 
whedur she dessembled or not and euer he founde hyr won woman 
in as lovyng maner as any woman eowde be to h,yr husbonde as 
well m goyng to hyr bed with the seid Roger as in all odur lovyng 
delyng. 

Item the mondey by fore she wentt to the kyng to Grenewyche the 
seid Margett ^at Sarynshed in fletstrete^ dissired the seid Edward to 
goo to the seid sir henre and witt of hym whedur I shall come and 
speyke with hym or that he will come and speyke with me and he so 
dyde and the seid sir henre seid that he wold speyke with hyr and 
there they sett them downe at a bed syde hot what they seid he can 
not tell. 

Item the seid Edward seith that when she wentt to grenewyche 
he wentt with hyr, and then when they were in the botte he seid thes 
wordes to hyr. Maistres, woll ye be aswell contentt now as ye haue 
bene all the whiles, that ye haue bene with the seid Roger. ^ Then 
she answerd thus,^ What thenke ye in me that ye axke me all thes 
questions so oft as ye haue done, and I were so false and so vnsad ^ 
as ye thenke I am, it were pete that I shuld lyflfe. 

Item the seid Edward seith that the seid Margett when the seid 
Roger hade boght a hors at a Town called Parshore in Worsetturshyre 
she was glad there of and toke to hyr awne purse as she sate on 
hors backe and gaffe to hym that broght the seid hors xij d. or xx d.^ 
he wottes not well whedur. 

Item the seid Edward seith in no comynycacion that euer he 
hade with hyr at any tyme hot that she ^said that she'' was euer well 
contentt and pleased with the seid Roger and that the seid Roger 
hade done nothyng to hyr bot that she was well pleased and that she 
was mete for no man bot for hym. 

Item the seid Edward seith that he examyned sir James hyr 
preste in secrete maner and axked hym whedur his maistres were 
contentt with the maryage as she seid or not and he seid yes he 
knew non odur wise and the seid Edward besoght^ the seid preste to 
shew hym the verray trouth as he knew in hyr and he layde his 
hande apon his porthowse^® and sware by that boke that he knew 
non odurwise bot that she was verrey well contentt with the seid Roger. 

*"* Interlined. I have not been able to Blacklriars side of the Fleet, 
identify this tavern. In * New Remarks ' ' Unsteady.' J. O. Halliwell, * Archaic 

of London,* collected by the Ciompany of Diet.' 

Parish Clerks (1732), in an appendix con- ** I.e. three or five groats, 

taining a list of stage coaches and carriers, * * hym ' struck through, 

there is frequent mention of the Saracen's '" Otherwise portasse, portaa or potteux 

Head, Carter Lane, which was on the a breviary. UalliwoU. 



KKBELL r. VKKNON 137 

Item the seid Edward seith that the seid Roger ^' after aH he was 
takyn^* Westmynstre ^ send hyr a Pyke and Erynges *• and she send 
to hym ^* to the same place ® ayen a dysshe of appuls, and the seid 
margett send the seid Pyke by the seid Edward vnto the seid sir 
henre when it was sodon and he toke parte there of and send hyr the 
remnant and the seid Edward seith that he knowith not hot that she 
toke the seid Pyke and Eryng with good hert and good will as any 
woman eowde take a gyft of hyr husbond. 

XV™" die Julii Anno etc. xvij"**.^^ 

Indorsed. Pro Henrico Vernon milite. 

Edward Gapull. 
Thies billes my ^^ felow quynt deliuered to me this Tewysday the 
viij"' day of Novembre anno xviij''.*^ 

iiij die Novembris Anno Henrici vij. xxJ* 



EYNESHAM, xVBBOT OF, v. HARECOURT AND OTHERS.' 

A- To the kyng our Souereyn Lord 

1^^^ Humble sheweth vnto your noble highnes 

your dayly Oratour milys^ Abbot of your^ 

" I.e. fled to sanctuary. Ho was privi- '* Herrings, 

leged from arrest here bccaase his offence '^ In W. Stodham^s hand. He was 

was a felony. In 1378, in response to presumably attorney for the defendant, 

complaints by Parliament of the abuse of * Originally there were but two attornies 

the Sanctuary at Westminster, the King appointed in the Court, one for the plaintiff, 

took the advice of ' certains Doctours en another for the defendant ' (W. Hudson, 

Theologie de Canoun ot de Civil ' who *0f the Court of Star Chamber,' p. 46). 

held 'qe en cas de dette, d'accompte, ne Hence ' my felow.* 

pur trespas fait, si homme n'y doit perdre *' 1502. 

vie ou membre, nully doit en saint Esglise '^ 1504. 

avoir Immunite.' They held further that ' S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 34. 

no prince or pope had power to grant '^ Miles Salley or Sawley. The name 

immunity in such cases (Rot. Pari. iii. was probably that of the place of his birth, 

37, a, b). This opinion was adopted, ex- adopted at his profession, as was then the 

cept that * pour especial affection que fashion (see R. Holinshed, * Chronicles ' 

nostre dit seigneur le lioi ad au dit lieu de [1808], p. 213). This would either be Sawlay 

Westminster plus que a aucun autre lieu in Derbyshire or Sawley or Salley in 

de Son Roiaume,* a special privilege was Craven, Yorks, for the pronunciation of the 

conferred in favour of persons indebted name may be inferred from this variation 

otherwise than owing to their own defaults in the spelling which also occurs in the 

(ib. 51, a, b). Westminster, and some name of Arthur Sawle, Sale or Salley in 

other sanctuaries, called ' private,' pro- 1546 (C. W. Boase, * Register of the Uni- 

tected the criminal for life; general sanctu- versity of Oicford' [1885], i. 212). Antony 

aries, as churches, only for forty days. Wood {' Ath. Oxon.' ii. 711, ed. 1815) 

within which the criminal had his option conjectures that he was educated at 

of abjuring the realm. Reeves, ' Hist, of Gloucester College, * afterwards Gloucester 

.' Eng. Law ' (ed. W. F. Finlason, 1869), iii. Hall, begun at first to be built by and for the 

191. monks of Gloacester of the Order of St. 



138 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



monasterie of Eynesham ^ within the Gountie of 
Oxenford of dyuerse riottes extorcions wronges 
and inuries done to hym and his Couent'^ by 
sir Eobert Hareeourt ^ knyght and dyuerse oder 



^f* v.'- <» 



Bennet ' (id. 'Colleges and Halls' [ed. 1786], 
p. 629). The Christian name of Miles, 
latinised as Milo, was so extremely rare in 
the fifteenth centary that it does not once 
occur in the Register of the University of 
Oxford between 1449 and 1463, after which 
date there is a gap till 1505. He probably 
took his degreee, therefore, after 1463. In 
a list of the bishops of Llaudafif given by 
Leland/ Collectanea' (ed. T.Heame [1760], 
I. ii. p. 348, f. 473), he is entered as 

* eleemosynarius de Abbendun,' also a 
Benedictine house. According to Willis, 
followed by the editor of Dugdale, he was 
elected abbot of Eynesham in 1498, but this 
date is incorrect, for he was returned by 
the commissioners of inclosures in 1517 as 
having, as abbot, inclosed land at Little 
Holbight on Nov. 4, 1496 (I. S. Leadam, 

* Domesday of Inclosures' [1897], i. 328). 
Custody of the temporalities of the see of 
Llandafif was granted him on Nov. 14, 1499 
(Le Neve, * Fasti Eccl. Angl.' [1854], ii. 250, 
n. 11). The Canterbury Kegister shows 
that he obtained a licence for his consecra- 
tion on March 13 (according to Kennet in 
Wood's ' Fasti Oxon.' ii. 711, n. 5, on March 
10), 1500 (Le Neve, ii. 250), and received 
the temporalities as bishop of Llandaff 
on May 12 following (ib.). He held the 
abbacy in commendam with his see (ib. 
n. 9). In 1601 he entertained prince Henry 
at Eynesham. If an inference may be 
drawn from the circumstance that during 
the first six years of the reign of Henry 8 
ho was constantly nominated upon 
the commission of the peace for Oxford- 
shire, but^ never for Wales, it would seem 
that he. generally resided at Eynesham. 
On August 16, 1515, he was put upon the 
commission of the peace for the towns of 
Uske, Caerlion and Trillek in the Marches 
of Wales (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, II. i. 815). 
On November 15 of the same year he was 
among the bishops present in West- 
minster Abbey upon the occasion of the 
reception by Wolscy of tlie cardinal's hat 
(ib. 1153), and he was also sitting in 
Parliament in the same month (ib. 1131). 
His last nomination on the commission of 
the peace was for tlie town of Oxford on 
August 22, 1516 (ib. 2292). His will is 
dated November 29, 1516, and was proved 
on January 22, 1517 (Le Neve, supr. cit. 
n. 12). Wood states incorrectly tliat ho 
died in September 1616. Godwin (' De 
Praesulibus ' [ed. 1743], p. 611) gives the date 
as towards the end of December of that 



year. He was buried at Bristol in the 
chapel of the Black Friars' priory called 
the Oaunts, afterwards known as St. Mark's 
Church (Dugdale, 'Monast.' VL iii. 1492; 
Godwin, supr. oit.), now known as the 
Mayor's Chapel; the east end of which 
he rebuilt, and where his recumbent effigy 
in full episcopal robes is still to be seen 
(A. Wood, ' Fasti Oxon.' supr. cit. ; J. Murray, 
* Handbook for Gloucestershire' [1895], p. 82). 
He built some portion of the abbey of Eynes- 
ham, as the date 1504 visible in a gate- 
way in 1819 showed (Dugd. * Monast.' iii. 
11), and a large part of the palace at 
Mathem, Monmouthshire, inhabited by the 
bishops until 1706, much of which remains 
(Godwin, supr. cit. ; J. Murray, * Handbook 
to S. Wales ' [1890], p. 5). His will is abridged 
in Sir N. H. Nicolas, * Testamenta Vetusta ' 
(1826), ii. 538. He left books to Eynesham, 
and his mitre and staff to the cathedral of 
Llandaff. 

* Note the recognition of the king as 
superior lord. In the charter of William 1 
confirming the ancient foundation occur 
the words, * Abbatia autem in meo dominio 
maneat sicut caeterae per Angliam ' (Dugd. 
'Monast.' iii. 14), in conformity with which 
the dissolution of the monasteries was 
preceded by a formal surrender into the 
king's hands. 

* Eynesham, Eynshom, or Egnesham, a 
Benedictine Abbey, founded by Aethelmaie 
or Ailmer, earl of Cornwall and Devonshire, 
before a.i>. 1005; surrendered in 1539, at 
which time its revenues were 182Z. 2s. 4d. 
per annum. In 1536 they had been valued 
at 421/. See Dugd. 'Monast.' iii. 3. 

* *The early form of "convent," com- 
mon down to seventeenth century.' J. 
A. H. Murray, 'Engl. Diet.' s.v. Note that 
it is here used of the brethren exclusively 
of the abbot. Murray quotes in illustra- 
tion (int. al.) Prynne, ' Bemonstrance 
against Shipmoney ' (1636), 7 : ' The Abbot 
without the Covent, the Master of the 
CoUedge without the Fellowes.' It is cor- 
rectly distinguished here from the house 
or ' monastery,' but the use of ' convent ' in 
this sense is as old as the thirteenth 
century. See Murray, I.e. 

* Grandson of Sir Robert Harcourt who 
was elected K.G. in 1463 (Anstis, ' Register 
of theGarter ' [1724],pp. 171, 186), was killed 
on the side of the Yorkists in the Lancas- 
trian rising of 1470 and buried in Stanton- 
Haroourt church, where the tombs of both 
grandfather and grandson may yet be seen. 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V. HARECOURT AND OTHERS 139 



evyll disposed persons to hym belongyng and 
retayned/ 

First where one John Welshe oderwise 
called Sawyar a seruaunt to the saide sir Eobert 
desired and prayed instantly one Dan ^ Eoger 
Walyngford one of the comounes® of the said 
monasterye havyng the rule of the waters and 
nettes of your said monasterie that he mought 
haue his draught nett to fysshe his waters of 



Curiously enough, the defendant's tomb 
exhibits in front 'four monks in black 
holding their beads ' (Earl Harcourt, 
* Account of the Church and Manorhouse 
of Stanton-Harcourt ' |1808J, p. 15). The 
defendant was eldest son and heir of Sir 
John Harcourt, knight, by Anne, daughter 
of Sir John Norris, knight, of Bray. He is 
said to have carried Henry Earl of Rich- 
mond's standard at Bosworth after the fall 
of Sir William Brandon, but he was not 
standard-bearer to Henry after he became 
king (CampbeU, ' Materials,' i. 382). He 
served as high sheriff of Oxon and Berks 
in 1492-3 (J. M. Davenport, 'Lords 
Lieutenant and High Sheriffs of Oxford- 
shire ' [Oxford, 1868], p. 9). He was Esquire 
of the Body to Henry 7 in 1501 according 
to Lipscomb (* Hist, of Buckinghamshire ' 
[1847], iv. 590), but his name is among the 
list of knights dubbed of the Bath at the 
creation of Henry duke of York on October 
31, 1494, and he was made a knight 
banneret at the battle of Blackheath, the 
suppression of the Cornish rising on June 
17, 1497 (W. C. Metcalfe, 'Book of Knights' 
:1885], pp. 25, 27). In 1498 the University 
of Oxford addressed to him a letter in 
eulogistic terms as a man of the highest 
influence in the county (' qui maxime in 
comitatu potes ') requesting his neutrality 
in a lawsuit in which one of his dependants 
was plaintiff (H. Anstey, ' Epist. Acad,' ii. 
649). He married Anne or Agnes, daughter 
and heir of Thomas Limericke, esq., and 
widow of William Tame. By her he left a 
son, John, who died without issue, and four 
daughters (Lipscomb, I.e.). Sir Robert 
perhaps died about 1509, for on June 14 of 
that year a grant was made to Anthony 
Fetyplace, Squire of the Body, to be steward 
of ' Suffolk's land ' in the county of Oxford 
and master of the hunt in Ewelme Park, 
as held by Robert Harecourte and William 
Tyler (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, i. 174). After 
this his name does not appear in the 
Domestic State Papers of Henry 8's reign. 
' A suggestion that either the Act of 
1468 or that of 1487 against unlawful 
retainers had been contravened (see the 



defendant's plea on p. 157). Of these 
Acts the former was general and, while 
confirming the existing laws against giving 
liveries, forbade persons of all ranks to 
' give any such Livery or Badge or retain 
any person other than his menial servant, 
officer, or man learned in the one law or the 
other by any writing, oath or promise ' under 
penalty of a fine of 100 shillings for each 
badge given and a hundred shillings a 
month to which both parties were liable 
during the retainer (8 Ed. 4, c. 2). In 
view of the fact that Sir Robert Harcoart 
held office from the Crown as steward of 
' Suffolk's land ' and master of the hunt in 
Ewelme Park, the Act which the plaintiff's 
counsel probably had in mind was that 
passed in 1487. It is intituled ' An Acte 
agaynst retayning any of the kynges 
tennantes ' (3 Hen. 7, c. 12). It recites 
that, among other royal officers, the 
' Maisters of Game and kepers of his (the 
King's) Forestis Chaces Parkes and Warens ' 
were both retained themselves and retained 
others, whence 'greate unsuertie hath 
growen afore this time aswell to his 
Highnes as to his progeny tours.' It strictly 
forbade this practice and added that if ' eny 
of the seid officers convey eny of the seid 
Tennantes Inhabitauntez or Fennours to 
the kyng to eny feld or assembfe.or rowte, 
otherwise then by the kynges commaunde- 
ment to doo hym such service as he shall 
be commanded and that alwey in the kynges 
iyverey or signe with a conysaunce of hym 
that 800 convey theym by the kynges com- 
maundement ' the grants to the offending 
officer should be void. A rout, according to 
Brooke, is where three or more actually do 
an unlawful act of violence, either with or 
without a conmion cause or quarrel. Abr. 
tit. Riot (ed. 1573), p. 231. 

* A corrupt abbreviation from dominus, 
' used in addressing or speaking of members 
of religious orders.' J. A. H. Murray, ' Eng. 
Diet.' s.v. Its equivalent ' Dom ' is still 
prefixed to the Christian name of Benedic- 
tine monks. Id. s.v. Dom. 

• I.e. co-moynes, fellow-monks, as fre- 
quently in Year-books. 



140 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

the Temssyde havyng therfor as it is accus- 
tomed in the Contree, that is to say the thirds 
parte and when the said water was drawed and 
fysshed the said dan Eoger lefte the poysyng ^® 
stones of the said draught nett in an lie land 
perteynyng to the Ferme of the said John and 
brought home his nette with hym ageyn, which 
was the xix day of Septembre last past, and the 
xvj day of February then next folowyng the 
said Dan Roger and one Cristofre seruaunt of 
the said monasterie of thage of lx yeres and 
more came into the said He land with the bote 
of the said monasterie for to fetche the said 
stones ageyn, And the forsaid John Welsshe 
perceyvyng theym beyng ther came pryvely 
whill thei wer in the said lie land gaderyng the 
sayd Stones and toke a way ther said bote and 
sedyciously ^^ rowed the said bote away, en- 
tendyng to haue distroyed theym and so left 
theym ther like to haue bene perisshed, For it 
was colde weder and froste. And the said Dan 
Eoger and Cristofre wer environd with water by 
the space of half a myle. Thei perceyvyng the 
malece of the said John cried for helpe and so 
atte last one Baffe mury herd and cam to 
theym with a Bote and caried theym to land, or 
elles that nyght thei had bene distroyed for 
colde and with the water. 

Also the XV day of marche the said John 
Walsshe came with an oder bote of his owen 
into the Seuerall water within the Orchard of 
the said monasterye and ther tied his said bote, 
and then the officers of your sayd monasterye 
perceyvyng the said bote ther for the hurt 
harme and gret damage done to your sayd 

'" I.e. weighing down, in the sense used was that was seid Barabas that was bounden 
by Shakspeare — with men of discenoioun that haddcn doon 
* Lest leaden slumber poize me down manslaughter and sedicioun.' C. Richard- 
to-morrow son, *New English Diet.' (1844), s.v. In this 
When I should mount with wings of meaning the word ' seditious ' foUows the 
victory.* Latin. * Ego illam (Clodiam) odi. Ea est 
Rich. 3, V. 3. enim seditiosa; ea cum viro bellum gerit &c.* 
'* I.e. quarrelsomely, provocatively. Cp. Cio. Ep. ad Att. II. i. 5. 
Wiolif, St. Mark, o. 15: 'And con there 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V. HARECOURT AND OTHERS 141 



'^ Sir Robert Har- 
court sftith vppon his 
othe that he was not 
privie to any thing in 
thies articles surmised, 
neither woting willing 
neither assenting to any 
of thaim. 



monastere, as fettying*^ ther dyuerse tymes 
willcs ^^ and nettes of your said monasterie toke 
a loke ^* and lokked his said bote to a tree, and 
when the said John perceyued that his bote was 
fast lokked, that he coulde not haue it a way, he 
retourned home to his house, and fett a biU,^'^ 
and an hangger *® and came ageyn forsably into 
the said Orchard ouer an high wall there metyng 
with ij of the monkes manysshyng and thretyng 
theym callyng theym Churles and thevys, and 
vppon that did smyght att one of the said 
monkes with the said bill and smytte hym doun 
to the grounde, and his Felawe perceyuyng the 
maliciouse disposicion of the sayd John avoyded, 
and the said John pursued after hym to haue 
slayn hym. 

Also the xxiij day of the said moneth on 
tenebre *^ Wedonsday *^ at seruice tyme martyn 
Whithill Thomas Cater John Vaughan Kobert 
Smyth Thomas Bodam of Staunton harecourt *® 
Robert Walton and Edmund Spark of Sutton in 
the lordshippe of Staunton seruauntes reteigned^ 
with sir Robert Harecourt came with force and 
armys that is to say with byllys Swerdes and 
dagars and oder wepons, and entred into the 



'- I.e. Stealing. This meaning of the 
word * fet,' an obsolete form of * fetch,* is 
not given in Murray's Diet, sub * Fet,* but 
he quotes * Piers Plowman * (B. iv. 51) and 
Fletcher's ' Beggar's Bush,' v. 1, for the use 
of ' fetch ' in the same sense. 

'* Wiles, i.e. snares. 

'• Apparently of the nature of a pa<llock, 
but I can find no mention of such an article 
in Nicolas's * Testamenta Vetusta ' nor in 
Lacroix's * Illustrations of the Middle Ages.' 

'* See p. 165, n. 5. 

'* *A kind of short sword, originally 
hung from the belt.' J. A. H. Murray, 'Eng. 
Diet.' s.v. By the Act 1 Rich. 3, c. 12, § 2 
(1483), 'No Merchant Straungier (shall) 
bring into this Bealme . . . Knyves, 
Hangers, Tailiourshires, Scisors, Andyrons.' 
ib. In J. Skelton's * Engraved Illustrations 
of Ancient Armour,' I. plate Ixii., are some 
engravings of hangers, otherwise called 
anelaces or onlaces, from which it appears 
that they were short double-edged swords 
or long daggers, broad at the hilt and 



tapering to a point. Chaucer, Prol. 357* 

* An anlaas . . . Heeng at his girdel.' See 
Murray, Eng. Diet. s.v. Anlace. 

" In another hand. 

"* The Wednesday before Easter, so 
called because at the office of Matins and 
Lauds a triangular candlestick with fifteen 
candles was used, one of which was 
extinguished after each psalm. \V. Smith 
and S.Cheetham, * Diet. Christ. Ant.' (1880), 
ii. 1952. S. & C, however, state that the 
word * Tenebrae ' was used of the last three 
days of Holy Week only. J. O. Halliwell, 

♦ Diet, of Archaic Words,' gives ' Teneble 
Wednesday.' 

'" This gives us the date. Tenebre 
Wednesday being March 23, Easter Day 
was March 27. This was only in the 
year 1502 during Henry 7's reign. J. J. 
Bond, * Handy Book of Dates ' (1866), p. 235. 

*• About two miles S.S.W. of Eynesham, 
where was the manor house of Sir Robert 
Harecourt. 



142 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

said orchard ayenst the kynges peax commyng 
ouere the wall of the said orchard^' with 
oder evell disposed persons beyng without the 
wall redy to assist theym to the nombre 
of xj persons, whose names wer martyn 
Whi thill howsold seruaunfc to the said sir 
Robert Harecourt & John Cokkes with oder moo 
bryngyng with theym an axe to hew doun the 
said tree that the bote was lokked too, and so 
forciably to cary it away, and to be avenged on 
suche persons as did arrest the said bote, and 
at such season as thei wer ther was iiij of the 
monkes walkyng in the said Orchard, and thei 
seyng theym ther thei retorned bak to the prior 
and shewed hym of the said persons, but what 
thei entended thei knewe not. Wheruppon the 
said Prior came to the said persons and 
enquired of theym why thei came thear so 
suspiciously ouer so high gret walles beyng 
deched xv fote brode in such forciable maner, 
and thei ounswcrd Horson Churlcs delyuer vs 
the bote that ye have arrested, or elles we woll 
have it whether ye will or noo, and also be 
revenged vppon you or we depart this grounde 
And the said prior seyng theym so wilfully and 
unreasonably disposed satisfied theym with good 
and cold ^* wordes. Wheruppon thei departed. 

Also the x'*" day of Aprill then next ensueng 
which was Lowe Sonday ^^ came Thomas Cater 
John Vaughan John Welsh John Stokelay 
Thomas Badam John Hepy John Broughton 

*• In an Extcnta Manerii et Abbatliiac de H. MuiTay, * Engl. Diet.' s.v. 
Egnesham, given in Dugd. * Monast.' iii. 16, " There must be a mistake here. If the 

is a description of this orchard ' adjacente Abbot was right in his ftrst date, and 

uno largo gardino cum vivariis pro piscibus Tenebre Wednesday was March 23, Low 

recenter inponendis et custodiendis et cum Sunday must have been April 3, it being 

arboribus et ortis pro fabis plantandis, the Sunday after Easter. If Low Sunday 

plantisquc olerum, porectis, canabo, lino et was April 10, then Easter Day must have 

mnltis aliis herbis necessariis domus been April 3. Now Easter Day only fell on 

proficientibus. Et valet gardinum praedic- April 3 twice during the reign of Henry 7, 

tum cum proficuis hujuKmodi ab eo viz. in the years 1491 and 1496. But at 

provoniendis per annum juxta veri valoris the later of these dates the plaintiff had 

estimationem quadraginta solidos.' not yet been elected abbot of Eynesham 

"Cool, unimpassioned. Cp. Fisher, (see note 2, supra). It follows that the day 

Works, 269: ' His dclyng in tyme of pcrylles was either Low Sunday, April 3, or the 

and daungers was cold and sobrc.' J. A. Sunday after Low Sunday, viz. April 10. 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V. HARECOURT AND OTHERS 143 

Edmond Sparke Robert Smyth John Nele 
Richard Sharpe and Spephon -^ Swaynford with 
Oder persons vnknowen seruauntes retaigned to 
said sir Robert Harecourt into the Toun of 
Enesham with force and armes, that is to say '^'^ 
also with bowes & arrowes swordes buklers 
hawberkes^ billes and dagars, and then & 
ther went into dyuerses howses and sought and 
enquired if any seruaunt perteynyng to the 
Abbay myght be found, And so it fortuned 
that thei mett with an innocent body, one John 
Hadley Clerk of the Church of the said 
monasterie hauyng a botell on his hand to fett 
oyle for the said Church, and ther violently the 
sayd Thomas Cater smytt the said John Hadley 
with a dagar and sore hurt and wounded hym 
on the hed, wheruppon the said Clerk retourned 
into your said monasterie and shewed the prior 
and Couent beyng at Soper how thei had betyn 
and hurt hym and that thei wer commyng after 
hym. Vppon whiche shewyng the said Prior 
did send for the constable ^^ and the tythyng 

*• Sic. As appears below, a blunder prefect of the Imperial Stables or Master of 

for * Stephon.' the Horse. The Constable * stiillarius ' was 

^ An erasure of about eight inches in a high official before the Conquest, and 

length follows. after the Conquest was styled * Constabu- 

■^« The use to which these were presently larius Angliae.' The last Constable of 

put shows that this is a variant (unnoticed England was Edward Stafford, Duke of 

by Murray) of * haubert,' a form of halbert, Buckingham, beheaded May 17, 1521. The 

and has nothing to do with the knightly office of Constable was also attached to 

' hauberk.' The halbert differs very little Manors which had the right ' pur garder 

from the bill, being like it constructed both les prisons,* Stat. Westm. I. c. 15 (1275), 

for cutting and thrusting. The blade of a and is reckoned by Littleton (§ 379) as an 

halbert consists of three parts, the spear, ' estate upon condition.' This is doubtless 

the hatchet, and the flook or hook. The the origin of the Constables of fortresses. By 

first is intended for thrusting or charging the great Police Act of Edward 1, called the 

in battle; the second for cutting, and the Statute of Wynton( 1285), it was enacted that 

third for pulling dow^n works made of * en chescun hundred e fraunchise seyent 

fascines, in an attack on trenches or other eleus deus Conestables a fere la veue des 

temporary fortifications.' F. Grose, ' Milit. armes ' (cf. Worcestre, Bp. of, v. Thomas and 

Ant.' (1801), i. 130. Representations of others, p. 230, n. 5). But Bracton, who 

halberts are to be found in J. Skelton, died in 1268, speaks of Constables in asso- 

• Anc. Arms and Armour,' ii. pi. xc. In ciation with sheriffs, aa though Constables 

11 Hen. 7, c. 64 (' Actus convictionis of Hundreds or of Counties were in exist- 

certarum personarum ') occurs ' Armours ence (f. 337). It would appear from the 

defensives as Jakkes, Salettis, Brigandynes, Statute 5 Ed. 3, c. 14 (1331), that at that 

Bowes, Billes, Haubertis, Curesses, Gonnes, time there were Constables of Towns, upon 

Speres, Marespikis, Crosbowes, and other whom was cast the duty of arresting sus- 

enhabilmentis of Werres.' picious strangers under the provisions of 

*' A title gradually declining in im- the Statute of Wynton (* soient arestuz par 

portance. Originally 'comes stabuli,' the les Conestables des villes '). At a later 



144 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



men ^ to see the peax kept, And thereuppon the 
said Constable and tythyng men charged the 
said riotouse & evell disposed persons to kepe 
the peax in goddes name and the kynges, and 
thei diffied theym and put theym in ieopardie 
of their lyves, And so incontinent*^ came to 
the yates ^® of the said monasterye and shott in 
arrowes puttyng the Prior and Subpriour in 
ieopardie of their lyves, and hewed at the said 
yates with their billes and lyfted theym then 
out of the hookes with their hawberkes. Then 
thei within the yates as the porter with oder 
sett tymbre ayenst the gate and did vnder sett -^^ 
it ageyn. And then thei toke their hawberkes 
& hewed at their legges vnder the yatc. And 
then thei made an out Cry and called for Strawe 



date towns, as Lynn in 1480, were divided 
into oonstabularies, the constables being 
nominated by the people but elected by the 
jurats (A. 8. Green, *Town Life in the 
Fifteenth Century ' [1894], i. 307, ii. 415, 
n. 1, 421). By the sixteenth century, con- 
stables had become an object of ridicule, as 
in William Bullein's * Dialogue ' (1573), and 
in Shakespeare. In 1869 the office of 
Constable of a Hundred or High Constable 
was abolished by 32 & 33 Vict. c. 47. A 
writer in * Notes and Queries * (8th ser.), 
X. 297, states that the office of High 
Constable still exists in Caerphily Higher 
and Miskin Higher, Glamorganshire, as 
well as in the City of Westminster. 

The Constable in this case did not 
represent the Manor, for neither the 
charter of WiUiam 1 nor of Henry 1 
grants any franchise, and even the assize 
of bread and beer was subjected to a Quo 
Warranto (Dugd. * Monast.' iii. 17). He was 
the Constable of the Town, as is explicitly 
stated in C, p. 160, infra, and he and the 
tithing-men were the officers of the peace 
of the district; cf. the title of William 
Lambard's *Tlie Duties of Constables, 
Borsholders, Tithing-men, and such other 
Lowe Ministers of the Peace' (ed. 1610). 
The Hundreds-man and the Tithing-man 
are both mentioned together in the laws 
of Edgar, § 4 (B. Schmid, *Die Gcsetze 
der Angelsachsen ' [Leipzig, 1858], p. 184), 
as the responsible police of the district. 
The Hundreds-man became the Constable 
of the Hundred, or High Constable (see 
preceding note). ' Every Constable, petie 
Constable, Tithing-man and Borowhead be 
Conservators of the Peace by their offices 
within the limits of their Hundreds, Towns, 



Tythmgs and Boroughs. Y.B. 12 Hen. 7, 
17, Fineux.* W. Lambard, ' Eiremircha ' 
(ed. 1610), p. 14. 

** The tithing was a police division. 
Upon the question whether it was origi- 
nally a personal or a territorial division, 
see W. Stubbs, * Const. Hist.' chap. v. Pro- 
fessors Pollock and Maitland appear to be 
of opinion that the Tithing was a group of 
twelve or more persons in the Midlands, 
and a district in the South. The number 
of twelve was a tithe of the Anglo-Saxon 
long hundred of a hundred and twenty 
(Stubbs, I.e.). In the South the vill 
became recognised as a tithing. *The 
tithing-man is the tithing-man of a place, 
of a vill or hamlet' (P. & M., 'Hist, of 
Engl. Law' [Cambridge, 1895], i. 554-8). 
Qu. whether in this case the tithing-men 
summoned were the tithing-man of the 
town of Eynesham and the tithing-man 
of the tithing of the Hundred of Wootton, 
in which the town was situate. 

*• I.e. in continent! tempore, in con- 
tinuous time, without an interval. Cf. R. 
Higden, ' Polychronicon ' (Rolls Series, 41), 
V. 393: (transl.) * where he diede in con- 
tinenti tifter he hade seide so.' J. A. H. 
Murray, ' Eng. Diet.' s.v. 

** A common dialect form in Yorkshire, 
Derbyshire, and the northern Midlands 
generally. See Joseph Wright, 'English 
Dialect Dictionary ' (1900), ii. s.v. Gate. 

" Prop up. Cf. Gower, ' Confcssio 
Amantis,' b. v. : 

* That thei the werke shuld vndersette 

With tymbre.' 

C. Richardson, * New Eng. Diet,' 
(1844), S.V. 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V. HAKECOURT AND OTHERS 145 



and Firzes for to sett fire on the yates & on the 
said monasterie More ouer the said evell doers 
afterward went to Staunton, and arraysed ^^ vpp 
more people that nyght, and drave the said 
Prior to ordeigne men for the Save Gard of 
theym and the monasterie to watche al nyght 
vnto the next morowe that thei sent for ij 
Jastices of the peax maister William Harecourt '' 
and M' Eggecombe ^ of Oxenford. Vppon the 
which m*^ William Harecourt cam to the toun 
of Enysham beforesaide and charged the Con- 
stables ^ and Tythyng men ^ to see goode rule 
kept rebukyng one John mury William Wode 



** Arraise, araise, (fee, an obsolete form 
of * raise.' J. A. H. Murray, ' Eng. Diet.' 
B.V. araise. 

•• William Harcoort, of Combury Park, 
Oxfordshire, first cousin onoe removed of 
Sir Robert Harecourt, being second son of 
Sir Richard Harecourt and grandson of 
Sir Thomas Harecourt, the great-grandfather 
of Sir Robert Harecourt. He was lord of 
the Manor of Oorfe Moylen, Dorset. 
Lipscomb (* Hist, of Buckinghamshire,' iv. 
590) leaves a blank for the name of his 
wife, but in W. Eennett's * Parochial Ant.' 
(Oxford, 1818), ii. 894, occurs a memo- 
randum of John Chedworth, Bishop of 
Lincoln, dated June 11, 1464, as follows : 
*Dominus concessit licentiam vioario ec- 
desiae de Bygnell ad solenmizandum ma- 
trimonium inter Willelmum Harecourt 
armigerum et Elizabetham Stokys filiam 
Johannis Stokys in capella infra manerium 
de Burcestre situata dum tamen nulli per 
hoc fiat praejudicium.' John Stokes was 
High Sheriff of Oxon in 1486 (J. M. 
Davenport, * Lords Lieut, and High Sheriffs,' 
p. 9) and Knight of the Shire in Parliament 
in 1459 (J. M. Davenport, * Oxfordshire 
Annals,' 1869). It is, however, possible 
that this was a fijst or second marriage of 
his uncle. Sir William Harcourt, Knight, 
who, according to Lipscomb, married 
Anne Home. This seems the more pro- 
bable because *armiger' is properly the 
title of the eldest son, and although Sir 
William Harcourt was the second son, yet 
after his elder brother Sir Robert Har- 
court, K.O., had been knighted, the second 
son may have borne the title of armiger. 
(See ' Select Cases in the Ck)urt of 
Bequests ' [Selden Society], 1898, p. 147, 
n. 4.) William Harcourt served as High 
Shenff of Oxfordshire and Berks (the two 
counties being united under one shriev- 
alty) in 1491-2, 1503-4 and in 1510-11 



(Davenport, I.e.). PJt.O. List of Sheriffs, 
pp. 108, 109. 

** Presumably John Eggecombe, of 
St. Aldate's, Oxford, owner (perhaps in- 
heritor from John Edgecumbe, gentleman 
[flor. 1484], H. Hurst, 'Oxford Topo- 
graphy,' p. 37) of TriU-mill Hall, in Grand- 
pont Street, which he converted into a 
brewhouse (A. Wood, *City of Oxford' 
[ed. A. Clark, 1889], i. 201, 300). He was 
. Mayor of Oxford in 1484, 1485, 1491, and 
1497, and an Alderman in 1503 (ib. iii. 25, 
26), in which year he was nominated a 
commissioner to raise the feudal aids 
demanded by the King both in the town 
and county of Oxford (Bot. Pari. vi. 588, 
542). His will was proved in 1515 (J. C. 
C. Smith, * Index of Wills,' i. 184), and he 
was buried in St. Aldate's (A. Wood, ' City 
of Oxford,' iii. 199, n. 1). He left a sum of 
money for prayers for his soul at the 
annual service on St. Scholastica's Day, on 
which the Town made submission to the 
University. See A. Wood, * Hist, of the Uni- 
versity ' (1792), i. 473. See also H. Hurst, 

* Oxford Topography ' (Oxford, 1899), p. 50. 

"» Although by the Act 13 Hen. 4, c. 7 
(1411), two justices with the sheriff or under- 
sheriff were needed to record and certify 
riots, it had recently (Y. B. 14 Hen. 7, f. 9) 
been held by Fineux, C. J., that any one 
justice may suppress rioters (W. Hudson, 

* Treatise of the Court of Star Chamber > 
[1792], p. 85. Cp. also p. 236, n. 7, 
infra). As reason has been shewn for the 
belief that the abbey had no franchise, it 
may be inferred that one or both of the 
Constables of the Hundred of Wootton had 
appeared on the scene, accompanied by 
one or more of the tithing-men of the 
Hundred, in addition to ^e Constable of 
the Town. See n. 27, supra. 

** In another hand. 

" Sir Robert Harecourt had a manor 



146 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



** The said Sir 
Robert saith that he 
sapposithe that saoh 
Inditmentes ther be as 
be in this article oon- 
taigned bat he was at 
the time of thos Indit- 
ments fonnd in Stafford- 
sher " & had noo know- 
ledge therof vntil they 
were past. 



and Oder perteynyng to sir Robert Harecourt to 
Buflfre and maigten^ any such evyll disposed 
persons, which he wold lay to ther Charge 
herafter. And notwithstandyng the premisses, 
the said sir Robert Harecourt with his 
adherentes of very pure malece, without any 
occasion or lawfull cause geven vnto hym or any 
of his, hath vntruly indited '• certeyn of the 
monkes of the sayd monasteris at Islype of 
Felony that is to say one dan John Abendon of 
thage of iiij" and v yeres, Edward Westin Jameys 
Salley Roger Wallyngford and John Oxford*® 
with mo beyng monkes of the same monastery to 
the gret hurt and impoverysshment of the same 
monasterie, And so vtterly he entendith to vn 
doo theym except your good grace to theym be 
shewed in this behalf. And yet after al this the 
said sir Robert Harecourt coulde not be content 
but attempted to indite moo of the saide monkes 
at the Sessions kept at Ghepyng Norton, and ther 
al the Court knewe and perceyved that it was 
of wilfull malece. So that at that Cessions he 
coulde not opteigne his maliciouse purpose.*^ 



and seat at EUenhall, in Staffordshire, five 
miles N.W. of Stafford. S. Erdeswick, 
* Hist, of Staffordshire ' (ed. 1844), p. 184. 

*■ Maintain. The Act 11 Hen. 7, o. 8 
(1496) (*An Acte agaynst anlawfull As- 
semblyes and other offences contrary to 
former Statutes') complains of obstacles 
being thrown in the way of justice by 
*imbracery mayntenaance corrupcion and 
favoar.' In this petition, and perhaps in 
the Act, * maintenance ' is used in the 
sense of 'support.* In a strict sense it 
appears to mean either taking part in 
another's lawsuit or inducing another to 
embark in lawsuits. See Ooke, on the 
Statute of Westminster the First, 2nd Inst, 
p. 212. Cf. p. 241, n. 1, infra, and Introd., 
p. Ixv. 

** Presumably at Quarter Sessions. In 
1860 an Act (84 Ed. 8, c. 1) founded the 
jurisdiction of Quarter Sessions for counties 
and empowered the magistrates *doier et 
terminer a la suite le Boi, tote manere de 
felonies et trespas faites en meisme la 
Countee.' Lambard conjectures that the 
gp:ant of this power was accompanied by 
the assumption of the name of Justices in 
lieu of the more modest title of Conser- 
vators of tibe Peace. Marrow, whose read- 



ing is among the Lansd. MSS. in the Brit. 
Mus., whom Lambard controverts, assigns 
the change to 18 Ed. 8, st 2, c. 2 (1344). 
See *Eirenaroha' (ed.l610), p. 22. Although 
the statute of 1860 authorised the trial 
by Quarter Sessions of cases of murder, 
as a matter of practice the Justices of 
the Peace chiefly confined themselves to 
cases of theft, (fee, involving, however, 
capital punishment. See J. F. Stephen, 
* History of the Criminal Law' (1888), i. 
118-115, where the history is given of the 
gradual disuse and eventual abolition by 
statute (6 (fe 6 Vict. c. 88) of the power of 
trying capital cases. 

^ Note that, with the exception of 
Salley, every one of these is the name of a 
place in the neighbourhood, which points 
to the fact that the religious houses were 
recruited from the surrounding country. 
There is a Weston in Berks and another 
in Northants. See note 2, supra. That 
the names were adopted on profession is 
rendered the more probable on comparison 
with the other names in the case, which 
are not, with the exception of Broughton, 
local. 

*> See Introd., p. evil, supra. 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V. HARECOURT AND OTHERS 147 



*« This article this 
deponent confessithe 
savyng he saith that 
he saw noo oeroiorari 
and he dyd it vpon good 
ground as he saith as 
he was infoormed. 



And more ouer the thursday next folowyng 
he caused a Sessions to be kept at Henley vppon 
Temys in the extreme parte of the Shire of 
Oxford which is more then xxvj myles from the 
said monasterie And ther caused dyuerse of the 
said monkes to be indited Some of Felony and 
some of Byott, and some of both, and hath 
retoumed the said inditementes into the Eynges 
Bench " notwithstandyng a cerciorary ** to hym 
before delyuered. 

Also the said sir Robert Harecourt contrary 
to the laudable statutes of this lande mayn- 
teneth** certeyn evell disposed persons in the 
tounes of Eynesham and Gherlebury, that is to 
say, William Titte William a Wode Richard 
Serle Richard Reynoldes with oder evell disposed 
persons, So that the officers and seruauntes of 
your said Oratoures, when thei shall require any 
Rentes or oder dueties be so thretenned and 
imbraced** with the said Sir Robert and his 
seruauntes that thei dare nor may peasable do 
your said oratour seruice. 



** Presumably with the hope of seouring 
a conviction from a London jury. It was 
a legal doctrine that the removal of a 
record into the King's Bench was irre- 
versible, except by Act of Parliament. 
Coke, 4 Inst. p. 73. It was the practice of 
criminals at this period, perhaps in order 
to secure a less prejudiced trial in London 
or to throw difficulties in the way of the 
prosecution, themselves to procure the 
removal of their indictments to the King's 
Bench. To check this the * Acte concemyng 
felons and murderers ' was passed in 1515 
(6 Hen. 8, c. 6), empowering the justices 
of the King's Bench to remit such prisoners 
to their counties for trial. 

** * Certiorari is a Writ out of the Chancery 
to an Inferiour Court to call up the Records 
of a cause therein depending, that conscion- 
able justice may be therein administred, 
upon complaint made by bill that the Party 
which seeketh the said writ hath received 
hard dealing in the said Court.' . . . 
*Crompton, in his Justice of the Peace, 
fol. 117, saith. That this Writ is returnable 
in the King's Bench and then hath these 
words. Nobis raittatis ; or in the Chancery, 
and then hath in Cancellaria nostra ; or in 
the Common Bench, and then hath coram 



Justitiariis nostris de Banco.' Cowel, 
* Interp.' s.v. 

** See n. 38, supra. 

^ This is a le^ term used, as * main- 
tain ' above, in a loose sense. * Embraceour 
or embrasour, 19 Hen. 7, o. 18, is he that 
when a matter is in Tryal between Party 
and Party, comes to the Bar with one of 
the Parties (having received some Reward 
so to do) and speaks in the case, or privilv 
labours the jury, or stands there to surveigh 
or over-look them, thereby to put them in 
fear and doubt of the matter. . . . But 
persons learned in the Law may speak in 
the case for their clients.' Cowel, * Interp.' 
S.V. The statute to which Cowel refers is 
intituled *De Biotis repremendis' (1504), 
and recites that in the Act 13 Hen. 4, c. 
7 (1411), respecting riots there is ' no men- 
cion therin made of eny punysshment of 
the maintenours and embracers of the 
Jurriours.' Similarly, the recital of the 
Acte for Writtes of Attaynt to be brought 
against Jurors for untrue Verdictes ' (11 
Hen. 7, c. 24), passed in 1495, speaks of 
*unlawfull mayntenours, ymbrasours and 
Jurrours.' The next Act on the Boll of the 
same session is intituled * An Acte agaynst 
Perjury unlawfull mayntenaunce and 

l2 



148 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



This article he oon- 
fessith thus that he com- 
aanded the said persons 
all bat William bigar 
to take Distressed if 
thabbot wold not pay 
his fee, affor William 
bigar was with them as 
he saith. To the other 
artiole he saith that he 
sent onlye ij of his ser- 
oantes for thos oxen, 
that is to say, Baof 
Ghamels and oone or 
ij to go with him how 
many oxyn thay toke he 
can not tell nor how long 
the! wer kepte. He did 
thaim to be takyn ypon 
sooh causes as is ex- 
pressed in his answer. 



Also the xx" day of Octobre the xviii yere of 
the Eyng oar souereigne lorde,^^ the said su 
Bobert Harecourt sent one Eauffe Gharnes 
and Edmund Cooke William Byger with other 
of his seruantes ^^ in to the seuerall pastures of 
the seid monasterie and ther tok and droue 
awaye ccc schepe thorowe myre and water to 
Staunton,** which were worth at that tyme 
XXX li^^ and then afterwardis the said Eaufife 
Charnes came to Eynesham to the Abbot your 
Oratour and said to hym that he hadde arestid 
his forsaid shepe for iiij nobles^ of his 
masters fee^^ due to hym atte feste of seynt 
michell laste paste and so your said Oratour 
seid he deseruyd no fee of hym and that he 
wold trye with hym And thervppon your seid 



oorrupcion in officers * (11 Hen. 7, c. 26), and 
recites that * perjurie growth by onlawfull re- 
teynders mayntenaance embrasyng cham- 
pertie and corrupcion of goode aswell of 
the Shirefs as of other officers,' these 
persons, as the Act shows, being the 
offenders. It thence appears that CowePs 
definition is correct and that the word is 
properly applicable to tampering with trial 
by jury. Sir Bobert had, however, been 
probably sworn by the commissioners 
appointed for that purpose on 4 Jan. 1486, 
that he would not *any Mayntenaunce 
Imbracery Biotis or anlawfol Assembles 
make, oaase to be made, or assent thereto.' 
Bym., ♦Peed.* xii. 280. 

*• 1602. 

^' * Also if a man grant by his deed a 
rent charge to another and the rent is 
belund, the grantee may chase whether he 
will sue a writ of annuity for this against 
the grantor or distreine for the rent 
behinde. But he can not do or have both 
together &o. For if he recovers by a writ 
of annuity, then the land is discharged of 
the distress &o. And if he doth not sue a 
writ of annuity and the tenant sueth his 
replevin and then the grantee avow the 
t^ng of the distresse in the land in a 
court of record, then is the land charged, 
A the grantor discharged of the action of 
annui^.* Littleton, § 219 (Coke on 
Littleton). Coke doubts the doctrine that 
the grantee is estopped by taking a distress 
from bringing a subsequent writ of annuity, 
lb. 146a. 

A corody (see p. 28, n. 18, also 
n. 61, infra) was in the nature of a 
rent charge, and was conceived to issue 
from the religions house itself (prioratus 



sine abbathia vel alia domus est quasi 
tenementum de quo talis redditus [a 
oorody] pronenire debeat, Bracton, f. 180). 
But Bracton expressly says that there is no 
distraint for a corody, likening it in this 
respect to a contract to pay an annuity 
(* hujusmodi praestatio est quasi praestatio 
de camera,' lb. Cf. P. and M. * Hist. Eng. 
Law,' ii. 133), and he refers the grantee to 
the spiritual courts. By the Statute of 
Westminster II. c. 26 (1285) the temporal 
action of Novel Disseisin was assigned 
to the grantee of a corody (P. and M., 
ii. 184). The statement of defence alleges 
that * a clause of distress ' was in the deed 
granting the * fee.' Annuity deeds of this 
kind were known to Bracton as issuing 
from lay manors (f. 180). 

** ka erasure about two inches in length 
follows. 

^ I.e. two shillings apiece. This is a 
somewhat high price, for except in 1601, 
when the highest price of muttons was at 
the unprecedented figure of Sa. 4d., 2s, 
had not been reached since 1496, and 
Is. lOfd. and Is, 10\d. are the figures given 
by Bogers for 1602 and 1603 respectively. 
♦Hist. Agr. and Pr.,' iv. 860. 

^ 11, 6s. 8d., the noble being here 
taken at 6s. Qd, But see Idele v. Abbot of 
St. Benettes Holme, A, p. 60, n. 5, 

** Gowel says that a fee is a reward 
* given to one for the execution of his office,' 
and the reply of the abbot seems to indicate 
that Sir Bobert's demand was for his fee in 
this sense. Beasons have been already 
adduced for the inference that this was 
not a corody. According to dowel ' Corody, 
Corodium signifies in the Oommon Law 
a sum of money or allowance of meat, 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V, HARECOURT AND OTHERS 149 



Oratour sent for a replevy ** which replevy sir 
Robert Harecourt wold in no wise obeye bat 
kept the said shepe still by the space of viij 
dayes** So that for mysguydyng of the same 
shepe many of them the wynter folowyng were 
distroyed to the grett hurt of your said 
Oratouris and after that your Oratour paid hym 
xxvj* viij^ by compulsion or elles they had bene 
all distroyed. Also the last day of Marche then 
next foliwyng the said sir Eobert and his 
seruauntes fetchid away out of your said 
Oratours plowes xyj Oxen^ without demaund 
of any thyng dette or other And kept the same 
Oxen by the space of iij wekes So that your seid 
Oratour this yere was fayn to hire other plowes 
to erry** his lond which shuld be for the 
sustynaunce of hym and of his brethern the yere 
foluyng by reason whereof your said Oratour 
coulde not sowe the halfe of his said land to his 



drink and olothing, due to the King 
from an Abbey, or other house of 
Beligion, whereof he is the founder, to- 
wards the reasonable sustenance of such 
a one of his servants, being put to his 
pension, as he thinketh good to bestow it 
on. ... It is also apparent ... by the 
New Terms of Law, that a corody may be 
due to a common person, by grant from one 
to another, or of common right to him that 
is a founder of a religious house not holden 
in Frank almoine, for that tenure was 
discharged of all corodies in itself.* For 
examples of corodies granted by a religious 
house in return for a capital sum down 
see Bath, Prior of, v. 8t. Augustyn, Canter- 
bury, Abbot of, pp. 28, 29, 82. 

*' * Goods may be replevied two manner 
of wayes, viz. by writ, A that is by the 
common law, or by the pleint, & tiiiat is 
by the statutes for the more speedy having 
againe of the cattell & goodes.' Coke upon 
Littleton, 145 b. Li the latter case, the 
Sheriff would, without a writ, proceed to 
make replevin. Beeves, ' Hist. Eng. Law * 
(ed. W. F. Finlason, 1869), i. 49. 

*» In Bracton*8 day this was a very 
serious offence known as * vetitum namii ' : 
*cum injusta captio et detentio contra 
vadium et plegium dici poterit quaedam 
roberia contra pacem domini Regis, etiam 
plus quam nova disseisina' (f. 158 b). 
That the * captio ' was just made no differ- 
ence: 'quamvis captio justa vel injusta, 
tamen vetitum semper erit injustum* 



(ib.) The Sheriff might thereupon raise 
a hue and cry and apprehend the offender. 
In the case of a person so powerful as 
Sir Robert Harecourt this course was 
scarcely likely to be taken. Nevertheless, 
in holding a plea * de vetito namio ' the 
Sheriff acted, not as Sheriff, but as * justi 
tiarius regis,' it being among the pleas of 
the Crown assigned to the Sheriff owing to 
the necessity of expedition where the 
ownership of animals was to be determined 
(ib. 155 b). By the Statute of Westminster 
II. c. 2 (1285) facilities were provided for 
removing these pleas to the royal courts. 
The Sheriff, Sir Richard Fouler, in this 
case appears to have taken no steps; an 
illustration, so far as it goes, of the in- 
effective operation of the law. 

^ From the bailiffs' rolls of Cuxham 
(1316-17) and Holywell, Oxford (1841), it 
appears that the plough team was four 
oxen or four horses. J. E. T. Rogers, * Hist. 
Agr. and Prices,' i. 15, ii. 617, 655. Both 
Walter of Henley (ed. E. Lamond, 1890, 
p. 11) in the middle of the thirteenth 
century and Fitzherbert towards the middle 
of the sixteenth agreed that * the ploughe 
of oxen is much more profitable than the 
ploughe of horses ' (* Husbandry,' chapter 
intituled * Whether is better a plough of 
horses or a plough of oxen '). 

" A form not noticed in Murray's Diet. 
Cf. the obsolete *ear,* to plough. In 
Walter of Henley, p. 48, 'erybyll londe.' 
Cf. p. 259, n. 4, infra. 



150 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



*• Vnto this article he 
B&ith that the sayd 
Robert was tached by a 
warraant vpon bob- 
pioions of felony and 
only by my persone." 



hurte and damage of xx li and more. Also the 
iij'' day of April the said sir Robert Harecourt 
sent Edmmid Cooke his seruaunt with other 
persons to the numbre of xyj whos names your 
seid Oratoor knoweth not to Eynesham and 
ther lay in a bame all nyght and by force toke 
away away ^ a seruaunt *' of your said Oratours 
callid Robert Lane without any warraunt or 
laufull cause as far as he knowith as yet. 

Also the said sir Robert at euery sessions 
and assise wolnot sufEre the kynges lawes 
peasable with justice to be execute and 
especiall when any nisi prius shuld pass by 
twen partie and partie*® yf the jury be not 
retourned after his mynde with his riotous 
adherentes he stoppith them with thretenyng 
and other meanes that the true proces of 
the lawes may not passe but after his wilfull 
and ynlawefull pleasurs insomuch at the last 
assise kept vppon the brige bisides Abyndon 
in the Countie of Oxon^® he kept certayn 



** Sio, repeated. 

" In the time of William Bufns there 
were sixty-five servants at Evesham Abbey 
in attendiEuice on sixty-seven monks, five 
nnns, three * pauperes ad mandatum,* and 
three clerks. Of the servants five served 
in the church, two in the infirmary, two in 
■ the chancery, five in the kitchen, seven in 
the bakehouse, four in the brewery, four 
attended the bath, two were shoemakers, 
two were in the pantry, three weregardeners, 
three were porters, and five were in the 
vineyard, four attended on the monks when 
they went abroad, four were fishermen, 
four waited in the abbot's chamber, and 
two were watchmen. Dugd. * Monast.* ii. 4. 
At Tewkesbury at the Dissolution there 
were 144 servants to wait on the abbot and 
thirty-eight monks, ib. p. 88, W. Dyde, 
• Hist, of Tewkesbury ' (1798}, p. 146. See 
farther T. D. Fosbroke,* British Monasticism ' 
(1848), p. 195. The abbey of Eynesham at 
the Dissolution contained eight monks 
besides the abbot. Dugd. * Monast.' iii. 27. 

** Added to the line in the same hand 
as the marginal notes. 

** ' It is called a writ of Nisi Prius of 
these two words whereby the Sheriff is 
commanded to bring to Westminster the 
men impannelled at a certain day, or before 
the Justices of the next Assizes, Nisi die 



Lunae apud talem locum prius venerint * 
(fee. Cowel, *Interp.* s. v. The statute 
originating the writ of Nisi Prius was that 
of Westminster the Second, o. 80 (1285), 
where the writ is given as follows : * Prae- 
cipimus tibi quod venire facias coram 
justiciariis nostris apud Westmonasterium 
in octabis sancti Michaelis, nisi talis et 
talis tali die et loco ad partes illas venerint, 
xii. (fee' ; but Coke, 4 Inst. 159, gives it at 
greater length as foUows : * Bex viceoomiti 
salutem. Precipimus tibi quod venire facias 
coram justiciariis nostris apud Westmonas- 
terium in octabis sanoti Midiaelis, vel coram 
justiciariis nostris ad assisas in comitatu tuo 
per formam statuti nostri inde provisi capi- 
endas assignatis, si prius die Lunae proximae 
ante festum (fee. apud (fee. venerint 12 tam 
milites quam alios (fee' 

*" The Justices of Assize in the thirteenth 
century held their sittings in villages as 
well as in the principal towns. Bracton 
sat as Judge of Assize at Exeter, Morchard, 
Molton, Torrington, Chulmleigh, Barnstaple 
and Umberleigh. • Note Book,' i. 17 ; P. and 
M., * Hist. Eng. Law,' i. 181. By an Act of 
1882 Justices of Assize and Gaol Delivery 
were ordered to sit * in principalibus & 
capitalibus villis singulorum comitatuum, 
abi videlicet comitatus eorundem comi- 
tatuum tenentur vel in posterum tene- 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V, HARECOURT AND OTHERS 151 

persons by violence in a Ghambre and also letted 
Oder persons to come to the said assise, as the 
Justices then beyng ther can more largely shewe 
and specially in ij matiers one concernyng your 
** This article this ^^^ Oratoor and in An oder mater concernyng 
deponent denyeth." qj^q Thomas Dentun Squier. 

Also where William late Abbott ^' of the said 
monasterie & the Couent of the same place 
graunted vnder ther couent scale an annuitie of 
iiij markes ^^ yerly goyng out of their manor of 
Eynesham a fore said to the said Robert Hare- 
court only to haue his Fauour help and counseill 
to the seid monastery your said Suppliaunt 
seith that the seid Robert is ther most extreme 
enmy distroyer and vndoer to his poure of the 
said Monastery as apperith by the articles and 
co(m)playntes aboue rehersid wherfor they prey 
to be discharged of the said annuyte. All 
which the premysses considerid that it may 
pleas your god grace to graunt seuerall writtes 
of Sub pena to be dyrectid aswell to the said 
sir Robert Harcourt Thomas Cater John 
Vaughan Robert Smyth Thomas Badam Robert 
Walton Edmunde Sparke John Stokeley John 
Hepy John Broughton Stephan Swaynford 
William Titte^ John Sawier Richard Sparke 
Richard Serle Edmund Coke Richard Reynoldes 
John Neele John Gokkes Rauff Charnes William 
and ^ Byger commaundyng theym by the same 
to appere before your highnes and your most 
honorable Counseill in the Sterre Chambre at 
Westmenster to answer aswell your highnes 
as your seid Oratour of the seid wronges riottes 
and extorcions before don and the same your 
Oratour shall alwey prey for the preseruacion 



buntur» (6 Ric. 2, st. 1, o. 6). As 'the 1746), ii. 14. 

countie of Oxon ' is specified here, the '■ William Walwyn, 1469-1498 (Dugd. 

inference is that the assize was being held * Monast.* iii; 2), as to which last date see 

for Oxfordshire in violation of this Act. n. 2, snpra. 

The assize court was perhaps the hall of *" 21. 18s. 4d. 

the abbey, which is close to the bridge. ** See next case, p. 162. 

See J. Leland, * Itinerary * (ed. T. Heame, ** Sic. 



152 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

of your gracioas astate long to endure to goddes 
pleasure.^'* 

{Indorsed) Termino sancte Pasche ^ anno Begni Regis 
Henrici vij decimo octauo. 

Miles Episcopus Landauensis contra Bober- 
tum Harecourt militem et alios. 

Coram domino Bege & Consilio suo apud 
Westmonasterium die Martis videlicet xxiij die 
Maii proxime ^^ futuro quo ad Bobertum Hare- 
court militem ac ad alios infra nominatos in 
Octabis Ascensionis ^ domini proxime future. 

B. Thanswer of sir Bobert Harecourt knyght to the byll and 
Articules therin conteyned put ayenst him by Miles Abbot 
of Enesham. 

The same sir Bobert saith the gret parte of the mater comprised 
in the said bill is vntrue and by craft ymagined to put the same sir 
Bobert to trouble and vexacion for malice that the same Abbot berith 
to him without cause for he saith it apperith clerly by the shewing of 
the said Abbot in the said bill that as to the v or vj articule in the 
said bill conteyned, that he is not gilty consentyng nor priuy to the 
doyng of them, as by the same bill more pleynly apperith and for 
further declaracion of the trowght in the said mater towching the first 
Articule of the said bill for the takyng awey of the bott by the said 
John Welshe from the said yle leuyng the same Dan Boger and the 
same Gristofer his seruaunt within the same yle, the said sir Bobert 
saith that the said John Welsch hath said and often tymes complayned 
that the said monke and Gristofer oftyn tymes with their said bott 
wold com to the said yle lond and there drawe the lepys * and store- 
pottes with Fysche of the saidwelsche erly and late and had takyn 
the Fysshe awey with them to thualo^ of xl' and Above at dyuers 
tymes as he supposid wherwith the said John welsche founde him 
sore grevid, and oftyn tymes wetched to espie the takers of the said 
Fysshe and coude not fynde them And at the said tyme of the takyng 
of the said botte, The said monke and his seruaunt come with their 

** MS. maoh injured in parts. oatoh or keep fish. Cf. Act 25 Hen. 8, 

•• 8 May— 29 May, 1603. See J. J.Bond, o. 7 : * No person shaU take in ... any 

* Handy-Book of Dates ' (ed. 1S66), pp. 85, wele . . . lepe ... or by any other 

285. engyne . . . ue yonge frye ... of aD> 

" Tuesday, 28 May, 1508. kynde of salmon.* J. A. H. Murray, * Eng. 

« 1 June, 1508, ib. pp. 70, 79. Diet.,' 8.v. Leap. 

* Lepe, leap, dkc, a basket in which to ' The yalne. 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, l\ HARECOURT AND OTHERS 153 

said botte in to the said yle for to Fysche and to drawe the said lepys 
and storepottes And not for to seche for any such stonys of nettes as 
is supposid in the said bill, And the said John welsche perceyuyng 
them there hauyng no Record with him by cause they shuld not after 
that denay it, caried awey their said botte, thinkyng to them no 
harme but to haue their dede opynly knowyn, for there is a fery botte, 
and men kepyng the same neire the said yle which within an houre 
after conueyed them to the said Abbey, 

AND AS to the ij"** article for teyeng of the botte in thorchard of 
the said monastery the said sir Bobert saith that the same John 
Welsche infourmid him that the same John come with his bott to the 
comen landyng place of bottes in Enesham called thorchard ende, and 
from thens went to the said towne for the cariage of such stuf as he 
had to cary home, and after his departing oone of the monkes or ser- 
uauntes of the said Abbey for malice that they here vnto him for the 
takyng of the said Abbey botte in the said yle lond secretly conueyed 
the said botte of the same John Welsche into thorchyard of the said 
Abbey, And ther drownyd ^ the said botte, And the same John Welsche 
retournyng homward missed his said bott and hauyng infourmacion 
that the said bott was in the said orchyard, went in to the same to 
feche ayen the same botte And ther founde his saide botte drownyd. 
And ij of the said monkes of the said monastery there lyeng awayte 
for him purposely and perceyuyng him to come for his saide botte ther 
they him assautid sore bett and woundid and there him imprisoned 
so that he was not able by long space after to erne his levyng. The 
same sir Bobert than beyng in Stafford Shire afor and also long after 
vnderstonding no thyng of the said demeanour in the said Orchyard 
And after the same John welsche and diuerse othur supposid in the 
said bill and the monkes of the said monastery and othur the semauntes 
of the said Abbey frayed ^ to gedyr in the town of Enesham and at 
the said affrayes many wer by the monkes of the said Abbey hurt, but 
how thoys affrayes began or of whos sekyng the said sir Bobert can not 
certenly telle, for he was than and long afore in Stafford shire, not 
knowyng of theis demeanours but at his comyng home out of Stafford 
Shir, which was a monith after hering the demeanour of the said 

' Cp. the * Eng. Chron.' (Camden Soo. as it was already in the water, there would 

1856), p. 43 : * On of the grettist carrakez have been no point in carrying it out only to 

. . . was so rent and bored in the sides drench it. 

. . . that sone after it was dround.' J. A. * I.e. came into collision. Cp. Merlin 

H. Murray, * Eng. Diet.' s.v. It would seem (1450), 524 : * Ther myght a man haue sein 

from the narrative that a creek ran up the . . . many a shafte and shelde frayen 

orchard and that in this they sank the to-geder.' ib. s.v. 
boat. The word also means to drench, but 



154 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

persons with the said monkes as many as were his seruaontes there 
present which were but ij persons, and some of the Bemenaunt were 
his tenauntes, he commaunded forthwithe to warde to the stokkes '^ in 
Staunton harecourt And there kept them by the space of v dayes 
and after dischargid the said John Welsche and Edmund parke his 
tenauntes of theire tenure and lond * which they hild of the said sir 
• Bobert for their said misdemeanours AND AS to thindittament 
supposid to be done at the Sessions at Islipe, The same sir Bobert 
saith that he was neuer priuy nor consentyng therunto for at the 
tyme of the forsaid afirayes committed and contynually after vnto the 
said Sessions were done he was in Stafford Shire as is abouesaid, not 
knowyng of the said affrayes nor Sessions kepyng. And as towching 
the Indictamentes at the Sessions at Henley, The said sir Bobert saith 
that the said Sessions were the generall Sessions of the Shire, and he 
oone of the Justices of peax there sittyng as it was there afor con- 
tynually vsid and there dyuers billys of complayntes were put in ayenst 
dyuers of the said monkes and othur at the said Sessyons, and proues 
therupon hard, and the said sir Bobert no thing did there but as a 
Justice of peax ought to doo according to his othe concemyng thoffice 
of a Justice of peax. AND AS to tharticle that the said sir Bobert or 
any of his seruauntes shuld lett the said Abbott in gadering vp of his 
duties ^ in Enesham or othur places that he is not nor was gilty in 
any poynte in the said Article conteyned. And as to the takyng of 
the said Sheppe what the numbyr was he certeinly remembirs not, 
but for the takyng of them he saith that aboute michaelmas last past 

^ A punishment as old as the Anglo- following the precedent of the Act of 1351, 

Saxons. In Harl. MS. no. 603 is a picture labourers were to be sworn to observe the 

of a man in the stocks. See also Thomas regulations of the Statutes of Labourers as 

Wright/ History of Domestic Manners,* <&c. to wages, &c., and on retusal to be fastened 

(1S62), pp. 59, 116. By an Act of 1851 (25 in the stocks for three days. In order to 

Ed. 8, St. 2, c. 2) stocks were ordered to be enforce the provision of stocks, every town 

set up in every town for the purpose of or seignory which failed to supply them by 

punishing servants who were guilty of the following Easter was rendered liable 

offences against the statute fixing wages, to a fine of a hundred shillings (ib.). 

Ac. In 1352 the clergy complained that Considering that three days in the stocks 

king's justices confined clerks in the was held a sufiScient penalty for infringing 

stocks for a longer time than they did the Statutes of Labourers, the punishment 

laymen (Bot. Pari. ii. 244 b). In 1376 awarded by Sir Bobert Harecourt cannot 

the Commons petitioned that vagabond be said to have erred on the side of 

labourers should be confined in the leniency. 

stocks (ib. 340 a) and that stocks be set * It is to be observed that John Welsche is 

up in every town and village for this pur- described by the Abbot as * seruaunt * to Sir 

pose (ib. 841 a), which looks as though Bobert. He would probably be a tenant at 

the Act of 1351 had not been observed, will on the demesne. Cp. ' Trans. B. Hist. 

This petition was the foundation of the Soc' (1892) n.s. vi. 255. 

Statutes of Labourers passed in 1888 by "* I.e. legal dues. Cp. Chaucer, Friar's 

which wandering labourers were consigned Tale, 93 : To reysen vp a rente. That 

to prison or the stocks (12 Bic. 2, c. 8, Ac), longeth to my lordes duetee. J. A. H. 

By an Act of 1406 (7 Hen. 4, c. 17), Murray, s. v. 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V. HARECOURT AND OTHERS 165 

he sent to the said Abbott for xxyj' viij'^ than to him dwe for a fee 
which he hath out of the said Abbey vnder the conuent seall with a 
clause of Distres for non payment of the same, And the said Abbot 
refusid to pay the same, Aiid the said sir Robert sufferid a monyth 
yet after, And for asmoch as the said Abbott than wold not content 
the said fee, he commaundid Bauf Gharnels his seruaunt to Aske ayen 
the same fee And the said Abbot refusid to pay the same, wherfore 
the said seruaunt in peasible maner without any harnes distrayned the 
said Shippe And after the said money payd the said sheppe were 
delyuered forthwith. AND AS to the takyng of the said Oxon, The 
said sir Robert saith that oone John mery was bounde for the said sir 
Robert to the predecessour of the said Abbott for a certeyn summe of 
money And for the contentacion therof the said old Abbott and the 
said sir Robert aggreed that the said olde Abbott shuld reteigne of his 
fee of iiij marc which the said sir Robert had of the said monastery 
vnder the cou'ent seall vnto the said money were leuyed, And in the 
said old Abbottes dayes iiij li. was byhinde of the said fee which iiij 
the said sir Robert was content to goo to the contentacion of the said 
money, and after the said old Abbott died and the said now Abbot 
was elected Abbott And for malice that he berith vnto the said sir 
Robert he will not allowe the said John mery the said iiij h. but toke 
An Accion ayenst him for the same money. Wherfore the said sir 
Robert sent vnto the said now Abbott for the said iiij li. tharrerages of 
the said fee which to pay the said now Abbott refusid by force wherof 
the said sir Robert causid the said oxon to be distrayned in peasible 
maner without harnes by the said Rauf Gharnels and them kepte by the 
space of V or vj dayes, and than at the request of a gentilman there 
callid Edmunde Hampden ^ the said oxon were delyuered. AND AS 

" Second son of Thomas Hampden of for a month after Henry's aooession he 

Hampden, Bucks (W. Kennett, * Par. Ant.* ii. received a grant for * true and faithful ser- 

460-1). He joined in the rising of Henry vice as well beyond the sea as over this side ' 

Stafford, Duke of Buckingham, against of the office of keeper of the royal park and 

Richard 3 in October 1483, in which also forest of Woodstock (September 24, 1483, 

John Harecourt, Sir Bobert's father, was W. Campbell, * Materials,* i. 53). His attain- 

concemed (an instance of the revulsion of der was reversed by the first Parliament 

feeling produced in a Yorkist partisan by of Henry 7 (November 7, 1486. Rot. Pari, 

the suspicion of the murder of Edward 5 vi. 273). His grant was enlarged by another 

and his brother). Both Harecourt and of March 6, 1486, which bestowed on him 

Hampden were attainted of high treason in addition the office of steward or lieutenant 

by the Parliament that met on January of the manor of Wodestoke, &c, (Campbell, 

28, 1484, Hampden being described as ' Mat.' i. 357). In March 1487 he, being 

* Edmund Hampden, late of Fisherton, then an Esquire for the King's Body, was 

gentilman, sone to Thomas Hampden * dispatched by Henry 7 to Oxford with a 

(Rot. Pari. vi. 246). He probably escaped letter demanding the surrender of the 

to Henry, then Earl of Richmond and a Torkist ex-Chancellor, Robert Stillington, 

refugee in Brittany, and doubtless returned bishop of Bath and Wells. He was un- 

with him to England and fought at Bosworth, doubtedly selected for this mission as being 



156 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

to the takyng of Robert Lane, The same sir Robert saith that he was 
Buspectid of felony for stellyng of a horse of oone John a wod for 
asmoche as he toke the said horse in the nyghte out of the close of 
the said John awod and secretly the same horse kepte, wherfor the 
seraaontes of the said sir Robert knowyng him suspecte with the same 
him arrestid in peasible maner withoat any harnes how be it the said 
Abbott ought not there with to entermedill AND AS to that articule 
that the said Abbott surmisith that the said sir Robert shuld lett justice 
to be doone at the Sessions Assises or othur places, he is not gilty of 
any thing in that Articule comprised And as to the fee of iiij marc 
grauntid vnder the couent seall to the said sir Robert, which the same 
Abbott surmisith the same sir Robert to forfett thorought his de- 
meanour The same sir Robert saith that he hath alwey myndid the 
welth and honour of the said monastery, and hath done nothing to 
the hurt of the same except it were in the default of the said Abbott, 
for he saith that the said Abbott of his high and cruell mynde pykyth 
many quarells to his poore neyghburghs,^ which causes the said sir 
Robert hath avised the said Abbott to leue And in them wold neuer 
take parte with him which is the misdemeanour surmisidayenst the same 
sir Robert. Without that that the saide John Welsche John Vaugham 
Robert Smyth Thomas Badam Robert Walton Edmunde Sparke John 

a persona grata to the University, of which that in the same year the University wrote 

he was high steward or seneschal (H. Anstey, to the King, * Viz quemquam ex nostris 

* Epistolae Aoademicae ' [Oxon. 1898], ii. scolastiois viris in aliqua looa vestre Uni- 

521). Nevertheless, the University refused, versltati vicina profiscisoi posse in qaem 

being, it would seem, Yorkist in sympathy, fautores EdmnncQ Hampden non faciunt 

and it was not until the following October impetum * (H. Anstey, ii. 608). Henry, 

that Hampden succeeded in effecting an writing from Greenwich on April 5, 1492, 

arrest and conveying his prisoner to Wind- informed the University that he had sent for 

sor (Anstey, pp. 516-23 ; Ant. Wood, * Hist, of Hampden, censured his conduct, and for- 

the University * [1792], i. 645 ; * Diet. Nat bidden a repetition of it * seu per se seu 

Biog.' Bub Stillington). He does not appear per suos complices * (ib. p. 609). Hampden 

to have matriculated or been otherwise a had ceased to be high steward in 1491. He 

member of the University. On December was knighted on February 18, 1503 (W. 

23, 1488, he was nominated on the commis- C. Metcalfe, * Book of Knights,* p. 39), and in 

sion of the peace for Oxfordshire (W. Gamp- the same year was nominated a oommis- 

bell,* Materials,' ii. 386), and in the following sioner for collecting the feudal aids levied by 

year (April 7) a commissioner of gaol the King (Bot. Pari. vL 536). 
delivei^ for the University, to try a scholar ' There is so much justification for this 

of the University (ib. 482). In 1491 a tax, that Abbot Salley was presented by the Com 

of which the nature does not appear, was mlssioners of Inclosures in 1517 as having 

levied by Hampden, as high steward, and by on November 4, 12 Henry 7 (1496), in- 

oertain collectors (quaestores) belonging to closed two messuages and two hundred acres 

the King, which caused an outbreak on the of land at Little BoUright, and laid them to 

part of * the vulgar sort of scholars with other pasture. But the same oonmiissioners pre- 

associates of the laity ' (A. Wood, i. 649). A sented Sir Bobert Harecourt, also dead in 

brother of Hampden, presumably engaged 1517, as the imparker of thirty acres of arable 

in the collection of the tax, was imprisoned land at Staunton Harcourt on March 16,1495, 

by one of the proctors in Bocardo. This and for the conversion of the land to pasture 

seems to have provoked a feud between for the purpose of sport. Inclosures were 

Hampden and his supporters on the one nnpopuiar. I. S. Leadam, * Domesday of 

hand and the University on the other, so Inolosores * (1897), i. 328, 381. 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V. HAKECOURT AND OTHERS 157 

Cok John Stokley John Hercy John Broughton and John Nele were 
seroaantes to the said sir Bobert or with him reteignid contrary to 
the lawe in maner and foorme as in the said bill is sapposid, or that 
Bichard Sharpe, Stephin Swaynford or any othirs named in the said 
bill be or euer were reteigned with the said sir Bobert contrary to the 
lawe. And withoat that that the said sir Bobert was priuy knowing 
or assentyng to the said Biottes and A£&ayes in the said bill surmisid. 
And without that that the said monkes or any of them were indictid 
at Islipe by the labour and procurement of the said sir Bobert, or that 
he did Any thing ayenst the said monkes or their seruauntes at any 
Sessions othur than he by his ofiBce of Justice of peax ought to doo, 
or that the said sir Bobert appoyntid the Sessions to be kepte At 
Henley in maner and fourme as by the said bill is supposid, And 
without that that the said sir Bobert sent the said Bauf Gharnels 
Edmunde Cook or any other in harnes *^ to take the same distres, or that 
he is gilty of any such misdemeanour riott or trispasse, as ayenst him 
is surmisid in the said bill, all which maters the said sir Bobert is 
Bedy to Auerre And proue as this court woU awarde, And praythe to be 
dismissid out of the same with his resonable costes and charges for 
his wrongfull vexacion susteyned in theis behalfes. 

0. Thanswer of John Walshe otherwise callid John Sawyer, 

John Yaugham, Thomas Gatter, Bobert Smyth, Thomas 
Badam, Bichard Sharp, John Cockys, John Stokley, 
Edmund Cooke and John Nele to the bill of complaynt 
putt ayenst them by thabbott of Enysham. 

The said John Walshe saith that the grett parte of the matter 
surmisid ayenst him by the said bill is vntrue and by craft ymagined 
to putt the same John to truble and vexacion without cause resonable, 
but for declaracion of the trought in the said mater towching the 
first articule of the said bill for * takyng awey of the botte by the 
said John Walshe from the said He levyng the said Dam - Boger 

** The word includes weapons. Gf. 'Lano. or of artificers should be liable to arrest if 
Wills ' (1539), i. 158 : ' My soune . . . shall armed otherwise than with bows and arrows 
have one hamys that ys to saye a plate except when travelling on behalf of their 
coote or jacke a sallett a payre of speutes masters. The fact that the persons men- 
(? splentes) and ahalbert.' J. A. H. Murray, tioned in the plaint as assailing the monas- 
s.v. It is, however, to be noted that although tery were armed raises a presumption that 
persons said to be dependants of the de- they were armed as being the retainers of Sir 
fendant were armed, there is no allegation Bobert Harecourt ; or that, if of the labour- 
in the plaint that they were armed on this ing class, they were guilty of a breach of the 
occasion. By an Act of 1388 (12 Bich. 2, statute. 
0. 6) it was provided that servants of hus- ' ' the ' in B. 
bandry, labourers, and servants of victuallers * Dan, B. 



158 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



monk and ^ Gristofer his seraaont within the same He, The said John 
Walshe saith, That the said monke and Cristofir oftyn tymes with 
theire said botte wold come to the said He lond and there drawe 
the lepys and store pottes with Fysch of the said John Walshys ^ erly 
and late, and had takyn awey with them Fysshe ^ to thualour of xP 
and a bone at diners tymes as he supposid wherwith the said John 
Walshe found him sore grevid and oftyn tymes watchyd to espie the 
takers of the said Fysshe and cowde not finde them, and at the ^ tyme 
of takyng of the said botte the said monk and his seruaunt came with 
their said botte in to the said He ^ to Fysshe and to drawe the said 
lepys and store pottes, and not ^ to seche for any such stonys of nettes 
as is supposid in the said bill, And the said John Walshe percey vyng 
them there hauyng no Record with him by cause they shuld not 
after that denye it, caried awey theire ® botte thinkyng to them no 
harme but to haue their dede opynly knowyn for there is a fery botte 
and men kepyng the same neire the said He which within an houre 
aftur conueyed them to the said Abbey, AND AS TO THE 8E- 
CUNDE article for teyeng of the said ^° botte in the said **^ Orchyard 
of the said monastery, The said John Welshe saith that he came 
with his botte to the comyn londyng place of bottes in Enysham 
callid thorchard ende and from thens went to the said towne for to 
seche ^^ such stuff as he had to cary home, And after his departyng 
oone of the monks or seruauntes of the said Abbey for malice that thei 
bare vnto him for the takyng of the said Abbey botte ^^ secretly 
conueyed the said botte of the same John Walshes ^^ in to thorchard 
of the said Abbey, and there drownid the same ^^ botte. And the same 
John Walshe retournyng homwardes" missid his said botte, and 
hauyng informacion that the same ^' bott was in the said Orchyard 
went in to the same to seche ayen his said ^^ botte. And ^® found his 
said botte drownyd, and ij of the ^^ monkes of the said monastery 
ther lyeng awayte for him purposely And they ^ perceyuyng him to 
come for his said botte there they him assautid sore bette and 
woundid And there him imprisoned soo that he was not able by long 
space after to erne his lyvyng,'^ AND AS TO thentryng and comyng 



' the same, B. 

* the said welsohe, B. 

* the Fysshe awey with them, B. 

* said tyme of the, B. 
» for, B. 

* for. B. 

* said. 

»• • said * omitted, B. 
** the oariage of, B. 
>' in the said yle, B. 



'> Welsche, B. 

»* said, B. 

*• homward, B. 

>• said, B. 

" the same, B. 

'• ther, B. 

'• said, B. 

«• * they * omitted, B. 

•* The oorrespondence with 



B here 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V, HARECOURT AND OTHERS 159 

in to the said Orchyard the zxi^'^* day of marche in the maner and 
fourme as in the said bill is allegid the said John Walshe Thomas 
Gatter John Yaagham and Bobert Smyth sayen that grett parte of 
that mater is vntrue and by craft ymagined to put them to troable 
and vexacion without caase, And for declaracion of the trought they 
say that they came with martyn whithill to entrete the prioor of the 
said monastery to haae delyueraunce of the said John Walshys botte, 
And the said martyn went in to the said Abbey, and spake with the 
priour desiring him to haue the said botte delyuered, and the said 
prioor bad him seche the said botte And the said John Walshe 
Thomas Gatter John Yaugham and Robert Smyth went in to the 
said Orchyard to seche the said botte, and as they were Abought to 
haue losid and takyn the said bott the said Priour with xiiij monkes 
and V seculer persons seruauntes of the said Abbey came with bowys 
arrowys billes swordes and othur wepyns and there made assaute 
vpon the said John Walshe Thomas Catter John Waugham and 
Bobert Smyth and they perceyuyng the malicious entent of the said 
Priour and monkes and their seruauntes departid and fled for drede 

, of theire lyvys, And the said monkes pursuid them soo fast that 
oone of the same monkes lepid ouer the wall of the said orchyard and 
fell in a grett mire and there stak fast till he was holpyn oute, AND 
AS TO THE FBAY supposid to be made in the said towne of 
Enysham The said Walshe Thomas Carter John Yaugham and 
Bobert Smyth sayen that grete parte of that mater is vntrue and of 
pure maUce contryued to put them to trouble and vexacion, And for 
further Declaracion of trought they say that the said John Broughton 

^ Edmund parkes William Buteler and the same John Yaugham come 
in to the Ghirche of the said Abbey to here euynsong by cause it was 

, sonday, and whan they were in the same chirch dan Boger Wallyng- 

• ford and Thomas Ware monkes of the said monastery come and askyd 
them what they made there callyng them horson^^ knavys, and 
comaundid them to avoyd out of the chirch or they wold make them 
and therupon the same John vaugham John browton Edmund parkes 
and William Butler departid out of the said chirch and wer goyng 
in to the said towne of Enysham and whan they come to the yates 
of the said Abbey diuers of the monkes and seruauntes of the said 
monastery whos names they knowe not made assaute vpon the said 
John vaugham John Broughton Edmund Parkes and William Butler 
with cross bowis '' long bowys ^* billes ^^ stavys ^® swordes and othur 

" .Whoreson, bastard. non exeroitandis, 19 Hen. 7, o. 4) it was 

" By an Act of 1504 (De Balistis provided that none should shoot with a 



160 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



wepons and Shot at them and Smote the said John vaagham thorough 
the legge, and the said John Broughton on the brest with an Arrowe 
soo that they were in grett ieopardie of their lyvis, And the Constable 
of the said towne hering of this said afiray come towardes the yates 
of the said Abbey to thentent to see the kynges peax kepte, and 
diuers Inhabitauntes of the same towne come to ayde and assiste the 
said constable in kepyng of the kynges peax, and with them came the 



crossbow anless for the defence of his house, 
other than a lord or person having two 
hundred marks (133Z. 69. 8d.) freehold per 
annom. The penalty was forfeiture of the 
crossbow * to any person that wyll sease and 
take tiie same/ the offender to be prosecuted 
at sessions or assizes, and a fine of 405. for 
every day on which the use of the crossbow 
should be proved. A penalty of 102. was 
laid upon any privileged person who should 
allow his servant the use of his crossbow, and 
his privilege was withdrawn. The servant 
offending was to be discharged from service. 

This Act was, as the dates will have 
shewn, passed after this case had come 
before the Star Chamber, and as the monks 
were ostensibly defending their house, they 
would have been exempt from its forfeitures. 
The Act was inconsistent in its policy, for 
it allowed the use of the crossbow to un- 
privileged persons in this emergency, though 
the stringency of its provisions excluded the 
possibility of rendering its use effective by 
practice. The fact that .the monks had a 
store of warlike weapons illustrates the 
social condition of the time. Cf. p. 120. 

** The above-mentioned Act recites that 
*nowe of late the Kinges Subjectes . . . 
gretly delyte them selfe and take pleasour 
in usyng of Crosebowes, wherby grett 
distruccion of the Kinges Deer aswell in 
Forestes Chases as in Parkes dayly is hadde 
and done and shotyng in Long Bowes lytyll 
or nothyng used & lykelye in shorte space 
to be loste & utterly dekayed, to the great 
hurt & enfebelyng of this Bealme A to 
the cumforth of oure outewarde enymyes 
yf remedie be nott therfore in dewe tyme 
purveyd.' One cause of the disuse of the 
longbow is omitted from this recital, that 
is, the rise of price, as is set forth in a 
petition of the Commons in 1472. This 
petition mentions that prices had gone up 
from forty shillings to a hundred shillings 
per hundred bowstaves, the retail price 
being, instead of eight, ten, or twelve pence, 
five shillings, six and eightpence, or ten 
shillings apiece (Bot. Pari. vi. 156). The 
cause of this deamess was the extension of 
Turkish power in the Levant, from which 
the best bowstaves were brought. Accord- 
ingly the Act (12 Ed. 4, c. 2) provided 
thiftt vessels bringing cargoes from Venice 



or from any other country whence bow- 
staves had been imported should bring 
four bowstaves for every ton of merchandise, 
under penalty of 6«. Bd. for each bowstave 
in default. In 1483 the retail price of bows 
was limited to 3s. 4d. (by 22 Ed. 4, c. 4). 
Nevertheless, in 1484 bowstaves had, ac- 
cording to a petition of the bowyers, gone 
up to 8{. a hundred, a rise attributed to 
* the seducyous confederacy of the Lum- 
bardes.* The Act 1 Bic. 3, c. 11, therefore 
provided that Venetian and other mer- 
chants from the Mediterranean should bring 
in ten bowstaves for every butt of Malmsey 
or Tyre wine imported, under penalty of 
13s. 4d. per butt for every default. The 
Act limiting the price to 3s. id. was re- 
enacted in 1487 ('An Acte agaynst the 
excessyve price of long bowes' — 3 Hen. 
7, c. 13). But the consequence seems to 
have been to increase the scarcity, as the 
Commons complained in 1504, which led 
to the Act ' De custuma Arcuum ad tempus 
perdonanda* 19 Hen. 7, c. 2. The Act of 
Bichard 3 continued for three quarters of a 
century to be used by governments from 
time to time as a weapon of fiscal oppres- 
sion against Italian merchants. For the 
prevention of export by the Turks see S. P. 
Dom. Hen. 8 (1538), xiii. 1, 115. For 
action against the Venetians see Acts of 
the Privy Council, Ap. 22, 1566. 

** See Walterkyn v. Letice, p. 166, n. 5. 
** The staff as a weapon of war was, as 
may be seen by the well-known badge of 
the bear and ragged staff, what we should 
call a club (cf. p. 168, * clubbe or staffe '). 
It was one of the weapons anciently peculiar 
to the unfree. By the Leges Henrici Primi, 
c. 78, § 2, as an evidence of Uie degrada- 
tion of a free man to a servile condition 
'billum vel strublum vel deinceps ad 
hunc modum servitutis arma suscipiat,' 
where strublum, AtoI Xc7^/iacvov, with a 
v.l. Btumblum, is by some translated ' a club,' 
by others * a goad ' (Schmid, * Die Oesetze 
der Angelsachsen '). Bracton says that a 
club was the slave's weapon. Cf. Shak- 
speare, * Macbeth,' v. 7 : 

* I cannot strike at wretched kernes, whose 
arms 

Are hired to bear their staves.' 
Cf. also Walterkyn v. Letice, p. 167, n. 2. 



EYNESHAM, ABBOT OF, V, HARECOURT AND OTHERS 161 

said John Walsche Thomas Garter ^^ John Stokeley and John Nele 
to ayde and assiste the said constable in kepyng the peax as is 
aforesaid, and the said monkes and theire seraauntes shotte arows 
a mong them all and hurt dyuers of them, and a mong all othur they 
strake a gentilwoman thorowe the Arme and they strake oone 
Stephen Warnysford thorough the neke with a quarrell *® of a crosse 
bowe AND AS to the bettyng and hurtyng of the said John hudley 
sernaunt of the said monastery the said Thomas carter saith that 
he and the same John mette sodenly togeders at the said affiray the 
same John beyng than dronkyn yave the saide Thomas Gatter unfit- 
tyng werdes and the said Thomas Gatter^ strake the said John hudley 
flat lyng ^^ with his daggar but he dide him no harme nor drew blode 
on him. AND as to the takyng of the said Sheppe, the said Edmund 
Gook saith that he come with the said Eauf Gharnes in peasible maner 
to take a distras for xxyj' viiij** which was that tyme due to his said 
maister for parte of his fee, and for asmoch as the said Bent had 
ben lawfully demaundid and the said abbott wold not paie it the said 
Bauf and Edmond toke the said shepp in peasible and lawfuU maner, 
And as to any mater in the said bill allegid ayenst the said John 
Gockes Thomas Badam and'^Bichard Sharpe" They sayen that the 
said bill and the mater therin surmisid ayenst them is vntrue and of 
pure malices contriued to put them to vexacion and truble for they 
were not in the said orchyard nor at the said afiray in the said town 
of Enysham as in the said bill ayenst them is allegid but they were 
in othur places abowte theire owne besinesses and so the said John 
Gokkes Thomas Badam and ^^ Bichard Sharp '^ sayen that they and 
euery of them be not gilty of the said mater surmisid ayenst them in 
the said bill. Without that that the said John Walshe conueyed his 
said botte in to thorchyard of the said monastery or that he yaue. 
the said monkys any such unfittyng wordes or smotte at them in 
maner and fourme as in the said bill is alleggid, but all that the same 
John walshe did to the said monkes was in his owne defence for 
sauegard of his lief, And without that that the same John Walshe 
^^ John Nele John Stokley ^^ Thomas Gatter John Vaugham and Bobert 
Smyth came in harnes or with any vnlawfull wepons to the said 
Fray in the said towne of Enysham *^ or in to the said orchyarde '* or 

'' Apparently three names which fol- ^ An erasure of about two inches in 

lowed have been erased. length follows. 

*• A square-headed crossbow bolt. Old *" Generally as a single word, * flatling/ 

French quarrel, Modern carrcau, from or ' flatlings,* prostrate. 

Latin quadrus with diminutive suffix. " Interlined. 

W. W. Skeat, ' Etymological Diet.* (1882), " An erasure of about three inches in 

s.?. length follows. 

M 



162 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

othurwise demeanid them to the said monkes or seruauntes of the 
said monastery at the said affray or at any othar tyme than is afor 
rehersid in this theire Answere, And without that that the said John 
walshe John vaugham Robert Smyth Thomas badam John Nele 
John Coekes John Stokley and Robert Smyth ^^ were euer seruauntes 
to the said sir Robert Harecourt or with him Reteigned contrary to 
the lawe in maner and fourme as in the said bill is allegid or that 
they or any of them be gilty of any mater ayenst them in the said 
bill surmisid otherwise than in this their said Answere is expressed. 
All which maters they and euery of them ben redy to proue as this 
court woU awarde and prayen to be dismissid out of the same with 
theire Resonable costes and charges for their wrongfuU vexacion 
susteyned in theis behalfes. 



TREHERNE AND ANOTHER v. HARECOURT.' 

1608 A. In most humble wyse shewith vnto youre goode lordeshippos 

your dayly Oratours John Treherne and William Full 
seruauntes to the Bisshopp of landaff that where the seid 
Bysshopp suyde the kynges writtes of sub pena directed 
to oone William Tytte of Eynesham in the Countie of 
Oxonford yoman and other seruauntes of sir Robert 
Harecourt knyght retornable bifore the Kynges most 
honorable Councell in his Starre Chamber whiche writtes 
your seid oratours deliuered to the seid William Tytt and 
other at Eynesham aforeseid on ^Saturday next after- seint 
• Dunstans day ' and then and ther the seid William Tytt 
dyd cast the seid writt in to the Strete and sore dyd strike 
your seid oratours for executyng of the same and on 
Sonday next after came moe seruauntes of the seid sir 
Robertes from Staunton Harecourte and other places to 
the seid Town of Eynesham with Swerdes bocolars and 
other wepons of warre and dyd lye in barnes hydels * and 
other places to thentent to haue murdered and slayn your 
seid oratours for executyng the Kynges commaundement if 
they myght haue takyn them owt of the monastery ther 
so that your seid oratours durst nat ryde to london the 

^ Sio, repeated. ' Hiding places, not unoommon in 

> S.C.P. Hen. 7, No. 35. medieval English. See J. A. H. Murray, 

'-' Interlined for ' Wenesday last bifore.* * Eng. Diot.' s.v. 
? May 19. 



TREHERNE AND ANOTHER V. HARECOURT 163 

right wey agayn but were fayn to ryde by woodes and other 
priue placys for * out of ther wey for fere of murderyng or 
sleyng by the seruauntes of the seid sir Bobertes so that no 
lawe justice nor equite can be ministred to none of the 
Eynges subgettes in that Gountre for the seid sir Robert 
and his myschiff adherentes and seruauntes to the grete 
discomford of all the kynges subgettes ther and to ther vtter 
vndoyng if remedy be nat prouyded for them in this 
behalue by the kynges most gracious highnesse and the 
lordes of his most honorable Gouncell ayenst the seid sir 
Eobert and his seid seruauntes, Please it therfore your 
seid good lordeshippes to commaund the seid Bobert here 
beyng present in this honorable Court vppon a certeyn 
peyne by your seid lordeshippes to be lymytted to bryng in 
to this seid Courte the seid William Tytt by a certeyn day 
by your seid lordeshippes to be lymytted that the same 
William may have answer to theis premisses and be 
punisshed accordyng to his deseruyng and your seid 
oratours shall dayly pray to god for your seid good 
lordeshippes. 

Indorsed. Termino Pasche Anno xviij° ® 

milo Episcopus Landauensis contra Bobertum Harcourt 
militem & Willelmum Tytt de Eynsham 

Sir Bobert harcourt sworn denyethe that the within wreten 
William Tytt is or euer was his seruaunt, but onlye he was 
in this deponentes cumpanye at blakheth feld/ 

B. Thanswer of sir Bobert Harecourt knyght to the bill of 
complaint of John Threherne and William Full. 

The said sir Bobert saith thitt ^ the said bill is fayned by the 
vntrue compassyng and ymaginacion of the said Bisshoppe to vex and 
truble the said sir Bobert and to put him to slaunder and to lose his 
good name, And for non othur cause, for he saith that the said 
William Titte is not nor of many yeres past was seruaunt to the same 
sir Bobert wherfor the said sir Bobert can not him bryng in as it is 
desired by the said bill, and as towching the demeanour of the said 

Sic, pronounced • for.* of, v. Harecourt and others, A, p. 138, 

•• May 3-29, 1603. n. 6. 

' 17 June, 1497. See Eynesham, Abbot ' Sic. 

M 2 



]64 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

William Titte vppon the said delyuerey of the said sub pena the same 
sir Robert can therto make non Answer for he was neuer consentyng 
priue nor willyng therunto, And if the said Titte soo oflfendid as is 
specified in the said bill the said sir Bobert in that nor in none othur 
hath not nor will socour nor comfort him therin, but to helpe to his 
punyschment according to his demerites. Also the said sir Bobert 
saith that he nor non of his seruauntes hath not to his knowlege nor 
shall doo nor say ayenst the said complaynauntes, And if his seruauntes 
hath done any thing ayenst them vnlawf uUy The said Sir Bobert saith he 
will not also therin them here ^ nor helpe. And as towching all the said 
misdemeanour specified in the said bill laide to the charge of the said 
sir Bobert he saith that he is not in them nor any part of them gilty, 
as by the same bill is surmisid. All which maters the said sir Bobert 
is redy to auerre and proue as this court woU awarde, and prayth 
to be dimissid owt of the same, with his resonable costes and charges 
for his wrongf ull vexacion susteyned in this behalf. 
Indorsed. Besponsum Boberti Harcourt militis. 



WALTERKYN v. LETICEJ 

A. To the king our soueraiii lordc 

1503 In most humble wise sheweth vnto your highnes your 

pore humble Oratour and daily Bedman Thomas Walterkyn 
heremyte of saint Michell besides highgate in the parisshe 
of harnesey- Where on sir Boberte letys Vicar of the 
parisshe of Saint pancras in the feld called Eentysshetown ' 

* I.e. support. Of. J. Strype/Eccl. Mem.* School is, on his own cost caased gravel to 

I. ii. App. Ixi. 150 : * If ye ... bear the be digged on the top of Highgate Hill, 

Abbot in his evil dealing.' J. A. H. where is now a fair pool of water, and 

Murray, * Eng. Diet.' s.v. therewith made a causeway from High- 

' S.G.P. Hen.7, no.51. gate to Islington.' The pond is now an 

' A hermitage is known to have existed asphalted open place in South Grove, 

here as early as 1364,in which year a pavage formerly Pond Square (Lloyd, p. 114). 

grant dated November 11 was made by the The hermitage occupied the site of 

King to William Phelippe, authorising Cholmeley's School, having been suppressed 

him to take tolls from horses and carts in 1539 (pp. 116, 135). The chapel was 

carrying merchandise on * the highway rebuilt and granted to the school by Bishop 

of Heghegate and Smethefield.' This Sandys in 1575, the Bishops of London 

Phelippe has been without any substantial being patrons of the hermitage (E. Walford, 

ground identified (J. H. Lloyd's * Hist, of * Old and New London,' v. 419). A form 

Highgate ' [1888], p. 118) with the * name- of profession of a hermit may be seen set 

less hermit ' who, according to Norden out in Sir B. G. Hoare's ' Hist, of Wilts ' 

('Speculum Britanniae ' [1723], p. 22) (1825), ii. 162. 

and Fuller (* Worthies of Middlesex 'in • * St. Pancras alias Kentish Town 

' Worthies of England ' [ed. 1840], ii. 326), Vicarage. This church is by the high- 

* dwelling in the Hermitaige where now the way side that leads from Holbom to 



WALTERKYN V. LETICE 165 

William Chadwyk of the same parisshe yoman John 
Hosteler yoman and Bichard Taylour with other diuerez 
and many Biottours and enyll disposed personz to the 
nombre of xl persones and more vppon Tewsdaie last 
passed the xxiij*^ daie of this present moneth of Maii^ 
in riottnos wise and in maner of warre that is to say with 
billes and stafes and other wepyns defensible cam into the 
hous and heremytage of your said Oratour in the parisshe 
of hamesey aforsaid, your said Oratour than being in his 
garden and his seruaunte with hym in peasible maner 
there laboring, And than and there riotously with diuerz 
manasing and threting wordes brake and hewd down as- 
well the pale of thorchard of your said Oratour as the pale 
of his garden and vnlawfuUy entered into the same And 
without cause or occasion yeuen by your said Oratour the 
said William Chadwik strucke your said Oratour vppon 
tharme with a bill * and wold haue murdred hym Except 
he had escaped from the said William and his cumpany 
into the Stepill of his said heremytage, wherein he 
contynued by all the tyme of there being there. And 
ferthermore your said Oratour saith that the said Byotours 
entred into the dwelling hous of your said Oratour and 
* summe of them toke awey ij Aulter clothes, a Syrplis and 
a boke called a grayll ^ with other stuff besides other hurtes 
and harmes to hym done in his said Orchard and garden. 
And as yete your said Oratour dare not presume to go 
home to his said heremytage, Onlesse your gracioux socour 
to hym be shewid in that behalf. Please it therfore your 
said gracioux highnes the premisses tenderly considered 
graunte your gracioux lettres of priue Seale to be directed 

Kentish Town, and so up to Highgate. (ed. 1866), p. 235. 

The advowson belonged to the Dean and * Bills varied * in form from a simple 
Chapter of St. Paurs.' B. Newcourt, concave blade with a long wooden handle 
' Bepertorium * (1708), i. 704. Kentish to a kind of concave ax with a spike at the 
Town is said to have been so named from back, and its shape terminating in a spear 
Kantelowes or Kentelowes, a manor in the head, a halberd. J. A. H. Murray, * Eng. 
Hundred of Ossulston, in which Kentish Diet.' s.v. Bepresentations of bills are 
Town is situate. E. Walford, ' Old and given in F. Grose, ' English Military Anti- 
New London,* v. 317. quities ' (1801), ii. plate 28, and in S. B. 

* The answer tells us that this was in Meyrick, ' Ancient Armour,' ii. 220. 

Bogation Week, which enables us to fix 'A book containing the antiphons call'Hi 

the date. Bogation Sunday, the fifth after ' Graduals,' * beyng wont to be song at the 

Easter, being May 21, Easter Day would steps going vp ' i.e. to the altar, between 

fall on April 16, which, in the reign of the Epistle and Gospel. Foxe, * A. & M.* 

Henry 7, only happened in the year 1402, i. J. A. H. Murray, sub ' Grail ' and 

1503. J.J.Bond, ' Handy-Book of Dates ' 'Gradual.' 



166 COURT OF 1*HE STAR CHAMBER 

to the said sir Thomas • William Chadwike John Hosteler 
and Richard Tailour or a seriaunt of Armes ^ or sum other 
commaundement them and euery of them straitly com- 
maunding by the same to appere before your said highnes 
and the lordes of your most honourable councell at a certen 
daie and vnder a certen payne to them and to euery of 
them to be lymytted by the same. And your said oratour 
shall daily pray to god for the preseruacion of your most 
noble and Royall estate. 

Indorsed. Scilicet coram Domino Rege & Consilio suo 
die Martis proxime futuri.^ 

B. Thanswere of sir Robert Letice Clerk Vikar of Seint Pan- 
erase William Chadwike John Hosteler and Richard 
Tayllour to the bill of compleint of Thomas Walterkyn of 
Seynt michell by Highgate. 

The seide vikar and the oder seyen that the seide bill is not certen 
ne sufficient to be answerid vnto but of grete malice vntruly feyned 
and imagened onely to sclaundre vexe and trobull the seide vicar and 
the other And the mater theryn conteygned determinabull at the comen 
lawe and not in thys Court Wherto they prayen to be remytted And 
thauauntage therof to them savid for declaracion of trouth and answer 
seyen that the seide vikar and the other before named with the hole 
parisshe of Eentishtowne the seide xxiij day of May in the bill of the 
seide Hermyte specified Whiche was in the Rogacion weke Accordyng 
to the lawdabull Custome of Englond Went in procession abowte 
theire seide parisshe in theire prayers as they and there predecessours 
haue vsed to doe owte of tyme of mynde ^ in godes peax and the 
kinges till thei came to the Heremitage of the seide Heremyte at 
Highgate Whiche Heremyte and his predecessours Stopped the pro- 
cession wey of your seide vykar and of his parisshons by meanes of 
makyng of pales and dikes And wuld not suffer them to passe With their 

' Sio, although supra * Sir Roberte/ that this was so, but so expeditious a pro- 

whioh the statement of defence shows to oedure is improbable, 
be correct. * ' The procession on three days before 

" See p. 247, n. 9. Also Introd., p. zxvi. Ascension Day was instituted by Mamertus, 

' If we are to assume that the petition bishop of Vienne in Dauphin^,' a.d. 452. 

came before the Court forthwith, it must ... In England the Council of Cloveshoo, 

have been drawn after May 23, and filed 747, orders the observance of these Boga- 

and indorsed before May 30, the day tion Days, secundum morem priorura 

appointed for hearing. There being no nostrorum (can. 16).' W. Smith and S. 

other date attached to the document than Cheetham, ' Diet, of Christian Antiquities . 

that of May 23, the indorsement suggests (1880), li. 1809. 



WALTERKYN V. LETICE 167 

procession as thei were wont to doe Albe it the seid Hermyte was 
cortesely entretid by the seide Ghadwike and other to suffer them 
peasibly to passe with their procession And then the seide Hermyte 
hauyng a grete Clubbe ^ by hym in his garden & ij other with hym 
with Clubbes Also Eichard yerdeley and Thomas marshall sodenly 
toke the seide Glnbbes and Strake at the seide Ghadwike ouer the 
pale with the violence of Whiche Stroke the seide Hermyte brake 
diners of his pales And afterward diners of the seide parisshe pullid 
downe serten pales for the seide parisshe to passe with theire pro- 
cession and so departed peasibly that wey With theire procession 
Withoute ony occasion gevying or quarell makyng to the seide Here- 
myte or to any othere And as to the entrying into the dwellyng 
Howse of the seide Heremyte and takyng awey of serten bokes thens 
they seyen that they be not therof gilti but thei seyen that the seide 
Heremyte is a man of il conuersacion and rule For thei seyen that 
the seide Heremyte hath leide to plegge one of the bokes that he 
supposeth shulde be Stolen that is to sey A grayle and other Stuffe to 
one John PheUppe for a serten Summe of money whiche the seid 
Phelippe wull auowe and testifie Whiche he Wulde now colorably and 
vntruly ley to the charge of diners of the seide parisshens. Withoute 
that that the seide vikar and the other before named came riottusly 
into the Howse and Heremytage of the seide Heremyte in the 
parisshe of Harnesey in manor and forme as by the seid bill is 
supposed, And Withoute that that they be gilty of brekyng or 
hewyng ony pale otherwise but as before doth appere, And Withoute 
that that the seide William Chadwyke is gilty of Strekyng the seide 
Heremyte with a bill or otherwise in maner and forme as by the 
seide bill is also supposed, And Withoute that that the seide vikar and 
the other aforeseide be gilty of ony Riotte or were of ony suche 

' Presamably as an ecclesiastical weapon . 1386, to William Lichfield, * pauperi Here- 
like the mace of Odo, bishop of Bayeux, at mitae senectute et debilitate oppresso * of 
the battle of Hastings, which was not designed * officium custodiae capellae nostrae de 
to shed blood (cf. also p. 158, n. 26). In 1236 Highgate juxta parcum nostrum eidem 
the Cardinal Legate Ottoboni issued an in- capellae annexae per Heremitas alios 
junction to the clergy against the wearing of pauperes solitae custodiri ' &c. The ameni- 
arms and armour. ♦ Cum igitur clericis, qui ties of the place are more fully set out 
inpraeclaramChristihaereditatemassumpti in a grant by Bishop Stokesley, on April 
sunt, usus armorum Divini et humani 20, 1531, of the chapel or hermitage, *ac 
juris auctoritate sit omnino prohibitus, ita messuagium, gardinum et ortum, cum suis 
ut etiam pro justitia eis ad offensionem aut pertinentiis, cum omnibus et singulis 
vindictam nullatenus uti permittatur' &c. decimis, oblationibus, proficuis et cummo- 
(E. Gibson, 'Codex,' &c. i. 161.) The ditatibus ac emolumentis quibuscumque 
hermit was an ecclesiastic, and served the Willielmo Forte Heremitae durante vita 
chapel. The hermitage was in the gift of sua naturali ' (ib.). The phrase ' chapel 
the bishop of London. Newcourt ('Repert.' or hermitage' recalls the expression in 
i. 654) gives the grant by Robert de Bray- document A, p. 166, ' the stepiU of his said 
broke, bishop of London, dated Feb. 20, heremytage.' 



168 COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 

mysdemenour in maner and forme as by the bill of the seide Heremy te 
is sapposed. ALL WHYCHE maters the seide vykar and the other 
bene redy to proue and make good as thys Court wuU Awarde and 
prayen to be dismyssed With theyr reasonabuU costes and charges for 
theyre Wrongefull vexacion and trobull susteyned in this behalf. 

c. This is the Replycacion of Thomas Walterkyn heremyte of 

seynt michell besidys hygate to the Aanswer of sir Robert 
vicare of seynt pancrase William Chadwyk & othyrs. 

The seid heremyte seith that his bille of complaynt is true in 
euery thyng and sufficyent to be aanswerd and he seith that the 
seid vicare and othyr be gilty of the seid riote & mysbehauyng in 
maner and forme as in the seid bille is supposed and moreouer he 
seith that the seid hermytage is in the parishe of harnesey out 
of the parishe of seynt pancras^ and he seith that dyuers per- 
sonys aswell of the seid parishe as of othir placys of theyr deuocion 
haue vsed to entre in to the Ghapell of the seid hermytage to here 
deuyne seruyce & to honour god ther at tymes conuenyent. Without 
that the seid Yicary or any of the seid parishe of seynt pancras haue 
or oght to haue any procession Wey ther or any other colour or title 
of entre in to the seid hermytage or any parte therof other then as he 
hath be fore rehercyd, And without that the seid hermyte or any 
other for hym hadde any clubbe or staffe at the tyme of the seid 
riote & forcyble entre commytted by the seid vicary and othir And 
without that the seid hermyte is a man of mys rule or that he 
pleyged any stuflfe belongyng to the seid hermytage as the seid vicary 
and othir in theire aunswere haue supposid. All which maters he is 
redy to prove as this court wille a ward and prayth as in his bille &c. 



HALLE V. ESSEXE.* 

A. To the Kyng cure soueraigne Lorde 

1608 Li the moste humble and lamentable wyse shewith and compley- 

nyth vnto youre excellent highnesse youre true Subgiette and Liegeman 

* Newcourt says on this point, *High- St. Michael the Archangel) where was 

gate, in this parish of Homsey aforesaid, antiently an Hermitage' (' Bepert.' i. 054). 

and partly in the parish of St. Pancras. If Newcourt be right, either the vicar &c. 

... On the top of this hill, in the said of St. Pancras were guilty of trespass, or 

parish of Homsey, stands a Chappel for the the boundary line must have passed close 

ease of that part of the country (called the to the chapel, 

chapel of St. Michael, because dedicated to ' S.C.P. Hen. 7, no. 53. 



HALLE V. ESSEXE 169 

William Halle of your Cite of London Taylour, son and heire vnto 
William halle of the parysshe of Eensyngton yn youre Gounte of 
middlesex decessid, That where as a good blessid creature callid 
Elizabeth Boote late of the saide parysshe of Eensyngton doughtir 
and heire vnto John Buttyrwyk ^ of the same parysshe, of her good 
mynde and vertuous disposicion than beyng wedow, yn her Testament 
and last wille made and provided vpon feoffament, after her dettis 
paide» that suche possession of Landis and Tenementes that she or any 
othir for her, to her vse yn Fee, hadde wythyn the saide parysshe of 
Kensyngton and elliswhere shulde remayne vnto oone Robert 
Scarburgh her next kynnysman, at suche tyme as he shulde comme 
to his laufuUe Age of xxj yeris. To have and to holde vnto hym and 
to the heires of his body laufully begotyn, and for laeke of suche yssue, 
alle the same landis and Tenementes beyng yn kensyngton shulde 
remayne perpetually vnto the forsaide william halle fadir of your 
saide Oratoure, whiche than was oone of her Feoffees yn alle the saide 
landis and tenementes. To haue and to holde vnto hym to his heires 
and assignes for euermore, Vndir condicion that the saide william the 
, Fadir shulde yerely fynde a covenable Preste to the honoure of god, 
to sey masse daily, sykenesse oonly excepted, yn the chirche of our 
lady of Kensyngton abouesaide and to pray for her Soule and for the 
Soules of othir her Frendis, till the somme of c. li. myght there be 
thurghly expendid and paide, and that the saide William halle the 
Fadir shulde fynde sufficient Surete to his Gofeoffees of and yn the 
saide Landis so to doo. And beside that, from the day of the discesse 
of her forsaide kynnysman Robert Scarburgh, the saide william halle 
the Fadir his heires executours and assignes shulde kepe a perpetuall 
Obytte yn the saide chirche of kensyngton for her Soule, the Soules of 
her fadir and modir and for alle her Frendis Soules, and for kepyng 
of the same shulde expende and pay yerely x' as yn her Testament 
more pleynely yt apperyth Whiche Robert Scarburgh discessed without 
yssue, by reason wherof all the saide landis and Tenementes yn 
Kensyngton remayned fully vnto the Fadir of your saide Oratoure yn 
Fee Symple, vnto all the whiche condicions the saide william halle the 

On Jane 8, 1454, Thomas Beanmond Husting, London, edited by B. B. Sharpe 

(d. 1467) in 1442 Sheriff of the City of (1890), ii. 633. The will of a WiUiam 

London, executed his will, whereby he left Bote, esquire, of Eensyngton, Middlesex, 

lands, tenements, and rents in the parish was proved in the Prerogative Court of 

of All Hallows de Bredestrete, charged with Canterbury in 1421. ' Index of Wills 

the maintenance of a chantry in that church proved in the Prerogative Court of Canter- 

for the souls of John Boterwyk, Alice wife bury, 1383-1668* (edited by J. Challenor C. 

of the same, William lloote, Elizabeth Smith for the British Becord Society, 1895) 

wife of the same, and others. Calendar of ii. 466. 
Wills proved and enrolled in the Court of 



170 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



Fadir yn his lyfe was evir agreable and them perfourmed, And your 
saide Oratoure wolde haue doon the same yf he myght haiie enjoyed 
the saide landis and Tenementes But soo yt ys moste redoubted 
soueraigne lorde, that oon Piers Ardern than beyng chief Baron of 
youre Eschequer ^ and william Essexe than beyng Remembrauncer yn 



* Peter Ardern or Ardeme, perhaps a 
son of John Arderne appointed a baron of 
the Exchequer on Feb. 5, 1444 (E. Fosb, 
' Lives of the Judges/ iv. 282), probably a 
member of an ancient family of that name 
settled in Essex soon after the Conquest 
It is possible that this was originally a 
branch of the very ancient and numerous 
family of Arden, in Warwickshire, among 
whom the name of Peter occasionally 
appears. (See Dugdale's * Warwickshire ' ; 
also O. B. French, ' Shakespeareana Genea- 
logica ' [1869], pp. 416-514 ; notes on the 
Shakespeare and Arden families.) But 
Sir Peter Ardern *s coat of arms, upon his 
tomb at Latton, differs from the bearings 
of the Warwickshire branches of that 
family. (See P. Morant, * History of Essex * 
[1768], ii. 489 A.) He first appears in 1439, 
at Knaresborough, as deputy of William de 
la Pole, Earl of Suffolk, Chief Seneschal of 
the Duchy of Lancaster in the north parts 
('Plompton Correspondence* [Camd. Soc., 
1889], p. liii.). Doubtless owing to the in- 
fluence of Suffolk, then at the height of his 
power, Ardern was made Chief Baron of the 
Exchequer on May 2, 1448, and on June 7 
following, also a tfustice of Common Pleas 
(Foss, ib. p. 408). He continued Chief Baron 
after the accession of Edward 4 (March 4, 
1461), and on April 8 following received 
a grant ' for the maintenance of his estate 
in his office * of 110 marks (732. 6s. 8d.) 
yearly at the Exchequer, and a robe with 
fur at Christmas, and one with lining at 
Whitsuntide (Patent Bolls, Ed. 4. 
1461-7, p. 128). His formal re-appoint- 
ment as Chief Baron is dated June 20 
following (ib. p. 94). On February 10, 
1462, he received a grant of a tun of Gascon 
wine yearly, at Easter, from the King's 
prises in the Port of London (ib. p. 187). 
He was evidently in favour at Court, and 
may be conjectured, from his connexion 
with de la Pole, to have been Yorkist in 
sympathy, for he was frequently appointed 
on speciaj commissions to try cases of 
treason (Pat. BoUs, 1461-7, pp. 201, 847. 
490). He had ceased to be Chief Baron on 
September 10, 1462 (ib. p. 198), when a 
grant was made to Illyngworth, his suc- 
cessor. The inscription on his tomb at 
Latton states that he was *in scaccario 
Baro primus ac post Justioiarius in Banco * 
(Morant, l.o.). This is confirmed by the 
Patent Bolls, for on June 25, 1467, in a 



grant of the manor of Latton to his widow 
Katherine, she is recited to have been ' late 
the wife of Peter Ardern, Knight, one of 
the justices of the bench,' i.e. of the 
Common Pleas (P.K. 1467-77, p. 28). No 
record of his appointment by Edward 4 
survives, but he was constantly engaged in 
judicial work on circuit till the year of his 
death (see Pat. BoUs 1461-77, passim). 
A gap, however, appears from March 28, 
1462, when he was commissioned to try 
treasons in Hampshire, to June 8, 1468, 
when he was put on the commission of the 
peace for Middlesex. This suggests that 
the cause of his cea^sing to hold office as 
chief baron was ill health, for it may be 
inferred from the fact that the grant to 
him of a tun of wine was exempted from 
the Act of Besumption of 1464 (Bot. Pari. 
V. 528) that ho had not lost the King's 
favour. In a case in Trinity Term 1463 
he is called *latc chief baron of the 
Exchequer, and now justice of the Common 
Bench et secundar ' (* Year Book,' 8 Ed. 4, 
fo. 6), which Fobs inclines to intei-pret 
* second baron of the Exchequer ' (Foss, iv. 
409). This conjecture receives some con- 
firmation from the fact that early in the 
term following his death (Oct. 80, 1467) 
Nicholas Stathum was appointed second 
baron (Dugdale, 'Orig. Judiciales' [1680], 
p. 68). Arden's re-appointment to the 
Common Pleas may therefore be dated 
between September 1462 and June 1468. 
Foss states, without giving his authority, 
that * fines were acknowledged before him 
so late as Easter, 7 Edward 4, 1468' 
(ib.). The recital of the Patent Boll 
already mentioned (June 25, 14G7) shows 
this to be a mistake for 1467. Easter 
Term in that year began on April 15 and 
ended May 11. His death, therefore, 
probably took place in May 1467, and his 
will was proved in the same year (J. C. C. 
Smith, * Index to Wills proved in the 
Prerogative Court of Canterbury,' i. 17). 
The grant to his widow of June 25, 1467, 
was a licence to feoffees to uses to convey 
'the manor of Merkhalle, alias Latton 
Merk, co. Essex,' to the heirs male of 
Sir Peter Ardern and Katherine, with suc- 
cessive remainders to Anne, wife of John 
Bohun, esquire, and Elizabeth, wife of 
John Skrcne , esquire, daughters of the 
said Peter.' He was buried in a chantry 
chapel founded by him and Katherine his 



HALLE V. ESSEXE 



171 



the same Eschequer * by theire grete myght and power, by coloure and 
vertue of their OflBces with writtes and many othir ynordynate 
meanys of vexacion caused the forsaide Fadir of your Oratoure to be 
putte yn prison, and hym excluded and putte from the possession of 
all the saide Landis and Tenementes yn Kensyngton, contrary to the 
wille and Testament of the forsaide Elizabeth Eoote, true enheritrice 
to the same, And at suche tyine as the Fadir of your saide Oratoure was 
yn prison, the forsaide Piers Ardern and williamEssexe sente vnto his 
Ghambre, and there by force contrary to your lawes brake vpp his 
Ghestes and Gofirs, and toke owte therof his golde and silvir and 
alle such evidences as he hadde concernyng the saide landis & 
tenementes, And whan the saide William halle hadde noticion and 



wife in the church of Latton, Essex, where 
an incised brass lies over his grave (Morani, 
ii. 489. C. Boutell, ' Monumental Brasses ' 
[1847], i. 91. H. Haines, 'Manual of 
Monumental Brasses ' [1861], p. 59). The 
probate of his will shews that he also left 
land in Yorkshire. 

* William Esseze, the Remembrancer of 
the Exchequer, first appears in a letter 
from Thomas Playters to John Paston, dated 
April 18, 1461, he being apparently then 
in office at the Exchequer (J. Oairdner, 
• Paston Letters ' [1874], ii. 7). His formal 
appointment by Edward 4 to the office of 
Bemembrancer of the Exchequer for life was 
dated July 18 following (Patent Bolls, Ed. 4, 
1461-67, p. 24). According to Leland (* Itin.,' 
iv. f. 19) he was also Under Treasurer 
of the Exchequer. On September 11, 1461, 
and again in 1465 and 1467 (P.R. Ed. 4, p. 
567), he was nominated on the commission 
of the peace for Middlesex. His grant of the 
Beniembrancership was exempted from the 
Act of Besumption of 1464 (Bot. Pari. v. 529). 
After the flight of Edward 4 he apparently 
turned Lancastrian, for he was nominated 
upon a special commission for Middlesex to 
try felonies, murders, and other offences 
(Pat. Bolls, Ed. 4 and Henry 6, 1407-77, 
p. 248). But he again conformed upon 
Edward 4's restoration in the following year. 
Thus he was placed upon the commission 
of the peace for Middlesex in January 1471 
by Henry 6, and in September 1472 and 
subsequently down to November 1475 by 
Edward 4 (ib. p. 622). In 1474 (October 16) 
he was nominated a commissioner ' de 
wallis et fossatis' 'by the coast of the 
marsh of the Thames between the Tower of 
London and the town of Stratford atte 
Bowe ' (ib. p. 463). On June 12, 1475, he 
obtained a confirmation of his office of 
Bemembrancer, his wages A'c. which were 
overdue from Michaelmas 1474 being made 



payable from the customs and subsidies in 
the port of Southampton (ib. p. 541). An 
inquisition taken in 1481 recites that 
Bichard Sturgion and William Hall were 
seised of the manor of West Towne in 
Kensington, Brompton, Chelsea, Tyburn, 
and Westbume, which by charter dated 
July 5, 32 Henry 6 (1464), they gave to Wil- 
liam Essex and Edith his wife in fee tail ; 
that William Essex died on May 26 last 
past (?1480), leaving Thomas Essex his 
son and heir aged twenty years* (Esch. 
20 Ed. 4, No. 80 ; T. Faulkner, * Hist, of 
Kensington' [1820], pp. 90, 91). 'This 
(i.e. William) Estsax pnrchacid Landes 
aboute London and is byried in an Isle of 
the Church of the late Priory of S. Barp- 
tolemes in Smithefeld in London * (J. 
Leland, ' Itin.* l.s.c.). It would seem that 
at some date between 1475 and 1481 
William Essexe received knighthood, for 
a grant dated May 4, 27 Hen. 8 (1535), 
appoints Bichard Pollard Bemembrancer of 
the Exchequer with fees &o. as enjpyed by 
Humph. Bowland, Thos. Walsh, or Sir 
William Essex (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, viii. 
802, 14). Now Thos. Walsshe was King's 
Bemembrancer of the Exchequer till his 
appointment as fourth baron on April 23, 
1534 (ib. vii. 588, 10), when Bowland was 
nominated in his place (ib. 589, 15). 
Walsshe had succeeded Bobert Blagge on 
January 27, 15 Hen. 8 (1524) (ib. 588, 15), 
who had held the office since December 6, 
1502 (Pat. 18 Hen. 7). Clearly, then, in 
the appointment of Bichard Pollard, the 
elder William Essexe is referred to. On the 
other hand, in the recital of the grant to 
Walsshe in 1524 he is spoken of as ' Wil- 
liam Essex' without the title of knight. 
The inquisition of 1481 also omits the title, 
which may perhaps have been a clerical 
eiTor arising from a confusion in the scribe's 
mind with Sir W. Essexe the grandson. 



172 



COURT OF THE STAR CHAMBER 



knoulache therof, he telle forthewyth distraught and clerely owte of his 
mynde, and than they delyuered hym owte of prison and withyn 
shorte tyme aftir he departed the Contrey, and noon of alle his 
Kynne nor Frendis knew where he became, to the grete hevynesse 
ynjuries and damages of your saide pore Oratoure, and ayenst the 
Soule helthe of the forsaide Elizabeth Boote, yn asmoche as her wille 
was not nor yitte ys perfourmed, And howe be yt that the same your 
Oratoure hathe many tymes and oftyn, bicause he was not of power 
to sue the Course of youre comyn lawe ayenst the saide william 
Essexe than enjoying the saide landes and tenementes yn Eensyngton, 
requyred hym, and also sythyn his discesse Thomas Essexe his Son 
and william Essexe son and heire^of the saide Thomas Essexe, whichc 



^ This William Essexe, the grandson, 
married between January and June, 1488 
(Inq. post mortem, Hen. 7, i. 345, 365), a con- 
siderable heiress, Elizabeth only daughter 
of Thomas Rogers, a large landowner in 
Berks (ib. 460), Herts (ib. 405), Hants 
(ib. 494), Sussex (ib. 365), and Wilts 
(ib. 521). On his betrothal, his bride 
being then aged eleven or twelve years 
(ib. 345, 365, 460), his father-in-law 
settled the manors of Bumbaldyswyke 
and Holyngardyn, Sussex, on his daughter 
(February 1, 1487). * By her he (Essexe) 
had 300 Markes of Landes by the Yere in 
Barkeshir and theraboute' (J. Leland, 
* Itin.,' iv. f. 19). Thomas Bogers died 
on January 19, 1488 (ib. 345, 865, Ao.), 
His principal seat was at Lambourn, Berks, 
called *Bogger8 Manor* (ib. 460), and 
here William Essex and his wife lived. He 
was appointed to the commission of the 
peace for Berks soon after the accession of 
Henry 8 (S. P. Dom. Henry 8, i. 241). On 
November 14, 1509, he was pricked sheriff 
of Oxon and Berks (ib. 664), and was 
from this time continuously enrolled upon 
the commission of the peace for Berks, 
though not for Oxon. He took his release 
from his shrievalty on May 24, 1511, and 
is therein described as of Chepynglambam 
(Chipping Lambourn), Berks (ib. 1688). 
He accompanied Henry 8 in his expedition 
against France in the summer of 1513, and 
was one of the knights created by him in 
the diurch of Toumay on September 25 of 
that year (ib. 4468, where the Harl. MS. 
erroneously has December). In France he 
was attached to the staff of Charles Brandon, 
Viscount Lisle (afterwards duke of Suffolk), 
the commander-in-chief (ib. 4653). He 
was present at the marriage of the King's 
sister, the Princess Mary, to Louis 12 of 
France at Abbeville on October 9, 1614 
(ib. 5483). He became a member of the 
royal household in 1516 (ib. ii. 872) as a 



Knight for the Body, and was present at a 
State banquet at Greenwich to the Imperial 
ambassador on July 7, 1517 (ib. 3446). In 
1518 he was a second time sheriff of 
Oxon and Berks (J. M. Davenport, ' Lords- 
Lieutenant and High Sheriffs of Oxford- 
shire,' Oxford, 1868, p. 2). He was one 
of the six knights representing Berk- 
shire at the Field of the Cloth of Gold 
in June 1520 (' Chron. of Calais,' Camden 
Soc. [1846], p. 21 ; cf. S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, 
ii. 703, 704), and on July 10 was present at 
the meeting of Henry and the Emperor 
Charles 5 at Gravelines (ib. 906). In 

1523 he was a commissioner of subsidy for 
Berks (ib. pp. 1364 and 8504). He was an 
officer in the Duke of Suffolk's army in 
France in August of the same year (ib. 
3288), having acted as commissioner of 
musters for Berks (ib. 3687). In the 
year following he was one of the collectors 
for that county for the loan in aid of the 
war with France (ib. iii. 214) and for the 
subsidy (ib. p. 235). He was again pricked 
sheriff of Oxon and Berks, November 10, 

1524 (ib. 819). He appears for the first 
time on the commission of the peace for 
Wilts in 1526, in which county, at Pyrton, 
he held the manor of Pyvenhill in right of 
his wife (Inq. p. m. Hen. 7, i. 521). From 
this time he was regularly on that commis- 
sion (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, iv. 2002 ; v. 1694, 
ii. Ac). On February 13, 1525, in company 
with Sir Thomas More and the Solicitor- 
(}eneral, Kichard Lyster, he was nominated 
a commissioner to make searches for sus- 
pected persons in Kensington, Hammer- 
smith, Knightsbridge, and Chelsea. He 
was appointed a member of the Privy 
Council ' for matter of law ' on February 5, 
1526 (ib. App. 67; ib. 1082) Upon the 
occasion of the great scarcity of 1527 he 
was one of a numerous commission to search 
bams and stacks in Berkshire for concealed 
wheat and for putting into execution the 



HALLE t\ ESSEXE 



173 



William the Son of Thomas nowe holdith and kepith the possession of 
the saide landes & tenementes to sufEre youre saide Oratoure to haue 
and enjoye hoolly the saide landis & tenementes accordyng to the 
wille of the forsaide Elizabeth, which they haue at alle tymes refused 



statute of Winchester against vagabonds 
and unlawful games (ib. 3587). Perhaps 
as a reward for this service he obtained 
(April 28, 1529) a Crown lease for twenty- 
one years of a forfeited house and lands of 
Sir Francis Lovell, at a nominal rent, at 
Buckland-in-Overton Burton (Berks), (ib. 
xvii. 1154, 3). He was returned to Parlia- 
ment as knight of the shire for Berkshire 
on November 3, 1629 (ib. v. 6043, 2, i.). In 
June 1530 he was a commissioner of gaol 
delivery at Oxford (ib. 6490, 20). He was 
one of four commissioners appointed on 
July 14, 1530, after Wolsey*s fall, to inquire 
into the Cardinal's possessions in Berkshire 
(ib. 6516). In this year his son Thomas 
Essexe first appears on the conmiission of 
the peace for Berks (ib. 6751, 24). Sir Wil- 
liam may have been taken to belong to the 
Boleyn party, for he accompanied Henry 8 
to Calais on October 11, 1532, upon the 
occasion of his meeting with Francis 1 to 
persuade the French king to intercede with 
the Pope for the divorce (* Chron. of Calais,' 
p. 42), was one of the knights chosen 
to attend Anne Boleyn at her coronation 
banquet in Westminster Hall on May 31, 
1538 (S. P. Dom. Hen. 8, vi. 562), and in 
the following year was appointed * steward 
of Newberye,' part of her dower, with a 
salary of 205. (vii. 1522, ii.). He appears 
about the same time (1534) to have engaged 
in two successful lawsuits against the Abbot 
of Abingdon, for which special juries were 
impanelled, to judge from the fees of 
61, lis. lOd, debited to the abbot (ib. 1676). 
His son Thomas in 1536, then aged 28, 
married Margaret, widow of William Rogers, 
eldest son of Sir John Rogers (ib. z. 392 
[28]). Sir William Essexe evidently con- 
tinued to support in Parliament the King 
and the party of the Reformation, for in 
October 1536 he was appointed, with other 
noblemen and gentlemen, ' to attend upon 
the king's own person,* and he raised a 
hundred men for the suppression of the 
Northern rebellion (ib. xi. 580, 2). But in 
the following December an unfortunate 
incident cast suspicion upon his loyalty. 
Essexe and Sir George Throckmorton met 
one night at supper * at the Queen's Head 
betwixt the Temple gates ' (ib. 1406), 
Essexe's favourite tavern (ib. xii. ii. 952). 
Throckmorton lent Essexe a copy of the 
demands put forward by Aske, the leader of 
the rebellion. Essexe, who had chambers in 
the Temple (see * Cal. I. T. Rec' i. 79, 118),