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Title: English Economic History - Select Documents
Author: Brown, P. A. [Compiler], Tawney, R. H. [Compiler], Bland, A. E. [Editor]
Language: English
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ENGLISH ECONOMIC HISTORY

SELECT DOCUMENTS



ENGLISH

ECONOMIC HISTORY

SELECT DOCUMENTS

COMPILED AND EDITED BY

A.E. BLAND, B.A., P.A. BROWN, M.A.,

AND R.H. TAWNEY, D. LITT.

LONDON

G. BELL AND SONS, LTD.

YORK HOUSE, PORTUGAL STREET, W.C.2



_Seventeenth Impression
First published October, 1914_


_Printed in Great Britain by Jarrold & Sons, Limited, Norwich_



INTRODUCTION


The object of this book is to supply teachers and students of English
Economic History with a selection of documents which may serve as
illustrations of their subject. It should be read in conjunction with
some work containing a broad survey of English economic development,
such as, to mention the latest and best example, Professor W.J. Ashley's
"The Economic Organization of England."[1] The number of historical
"source books" has been multiplied so rapidly in recent years that we
ought, perhaps, to apologise for adding one to their number. We ventured
to do so because in the course of our work as teachers of Economic
History in the University Tutorial Classes organised by the Workers'
Educational Association, we found it difficult to refer our students to
any single book containing the principal documents with which they ought
to be acquainted. That Economic History cannot be studied apart from
Constitutional and Political History is a commonplace to which we
subscribe; and we are not so incautious as to be tempted into a
discussion of what exactly Economic History means. It is sufficient for
our purpose that a subject which is called by that name is being
increasingly studied by University students, and that while the
principal documents of English Constitutional History are available in
the works of Stubbs, Prothero, Gardiner and Grant Robertson, there is no
book, as far as we know--except Professor Pollard's "The Reign of Henry
VII. from Contemporary Sources"--which illustrates English economic
development in a similar way. We are far from comparing our own minnow
with these Tritons. But it may perhaps do some service till more
competent authors take the field. It is hardly necessary for us to
apologise for translating our documents into English, and for
modernizing the spelling throughout. We are likely not to be alone in
thinking that it would be a pity if a passing acquaintance with the
materials of mediæval economic history were confined to those who can
read Latin and Norman-French.

A word of explanation as to the selection and arrangement of our
extracts may perhaps be excused. Our object was not to produce a work of
original research, but to help students of economic history to see it
more intelligently by seeing it through the eyes of contemporaries.
Hence, though a considerable number of our documents are published here
for the first time, we have not consciously followed the lure of the
unprinted, and have chosen our extracts not because they were new, but
because they seemed to illustrate some important aspect of our subject.
For the same reason we have not confined ourselves entirely to
"documents" in the strict acceptation of that term, but have included
selections from such works as Roger of Hoveden, The Libel of English
Policy, The Commonweal of this Realm of England, Hakluyt's Voyages, and
the Tours of Defoe and Arthur Young, when they seemed to throw light
upon points which could not easily be illustrated otherwise. The
arrangement of our selections caused us some trouble. It is, perhaps,
hardly necessary to urge that a document must be studied with reference
to its chronological setting; and the simplest plan, no doubt, would
have been to print them in strict chronological order. We felt, however,
that the work of all but the more expert readers would be lightened if
we grouped them under definite, even if somewhat arbitrary, headings of
period and subject, and added short bibliographies of the principal
authorities. This seemed to involve the writing of short introductory
notes to explain the contents of each section, which we have accordingly
done. But no one need read them. No one but students beginning the
subject will. If an excuse is needed for stopping with the year 1846, we
must plead that to end earlier would have been to omit documents of the
first importance for the study of modern economic history, and that to
continue further would have caused our book to be even more overburdened
than it is at present.

That the attempt to produce in one volume a satisfactory selection of
documents to illustrate English Economic History from the Norman
Conquest to the Repeal of the Corn Laws can hardly be successful, that
we have neglected some subjects--taxation, colonization, and foreign
trade--and paid excessive attention to others--social conditions,
economic policy, and administration--that every reader will look for a
particular document and fail to find it, of all this we are sadly
conscious. We are conscious also of a more serious, because less
obvious, defect. Partly through a pardonable reaction against the
influence of economic theorists, partly because of the very nature of
the agencies by which historical documents are compiled and preserved,
the natural bias of economic historians is to lay a perhaps excessive
stress on those aspects of economic development which come under the
eyes of the State and are involved in its activity, and to neglect the
humbler but often more significant movements which spring from below, to
over-emphasize organisation and to under-estimate the initiative of
individuals. If a reader of these selections exclaims on putting them
down, "How much that is important is omitted!" we can only confess
ourselves in mercy and express the hope that they may soon be
superseded.

It remains for us to thank those who have helped us with suggestions and
criticisms, or by permitting us to reprint extracts from documents
already published. We have to acknowledge the kind permission to reprint
documents given to us by the Clarendon Press, the Cambridge University
Press, the London School of Economics, the Department of Economics of
Harvard University, The Royal Historical Society, The Early English Text
Society, the Co-operative Union, Ltd., the Controller of H.M. Stationery
Office, the Corporation of Norwich, the Corporation of Nottingham,
Messrs. Kegan Paul, Trench and Trübner, Messrs. Duncker & Humblot, Dr.
G. von Schanz, Professor G. Unwin, Professor F.J.C. Hearnshaw, The Rev.
Canon Morris, Miss M.D. Harris, Mr. and Mrs. J.L. Hammond and Mr. F.W.
Galton. Among those who have assisted us with suggestions or in other
ways we must mention Mr. Hubert Hall, Mr. M.S. Giuseppi, Mr. S.C.
Ratcliff, all of the Public Record Office, The Ven. Archdeacon
Cunningham, Mr. W.H. Stevenson, of St. John's College, Oxford, Mr. A.
Ballard, Miss Putnam, Mr. R.V. Lennard, of Wadham College, Oxford, Mr.
K. Bell, of All Souls' College, Oxford, Mr. H. Clay, Mr. F.W.
Kolthammer, Miss O.J. Dunlop, Miss H.M. Stocks, and Mr. and Mrs. J.L.
Hammond. For reading our proofs, or part of them, we are indebted to Mr.
E. Barker, of New College, Oxford, Mr. C.G. Crump and Mr. C.H.
Jenkinson, of the Public Record Office, Dr. Knowles, of the London
School of Economics, and Professor G. Unwin, of the University of
Manchester.

We desire especially to express our gratitude to Mr. A.L. Smith, of
Balliol College, Oxford, to whose encouragement it was largely due that
this book was undertaken, and to Professor Unwin, who has not only read
through the whole of it in proof, but by his advice and inspiration has
laid us under an obligation that we cannot easily acknowledge.

[Footnote 1: Messrs. Longman Green & Co.]

  A.E.B.
  P.A.B.
  R.H.T.



CONTENTS


PART I: 1000-1485


SECTION I

THE EARLY ENGLISH MANOR AND BOROUGH


  1. Rights and Duties of All Persons (_Rectitudines singularum
  personarum_), _c._ 1000                                               5

  2. The form of the Domesday Inquest, 1086                             9

  3. The borough of Dover, 1086                                        10

  4. The borough of Norwich, 1086                                      11

  5. The borough of Wallingford, 1086                                  13

  6. The customs of Berkshire, 1086                                    15

  7. Land of the Church of Worcester, 1086                             15

  8. The manor of Rockland, 1086                                       16

  9. The manor of Halesowen, 1086                                      16

  10. The manor of Havering, 1086                                      17


  SECTION II

  THE FEUDAL STRUCTURE


  1. Frankalmoin, _temp._ Henry II                                     22

  2. Knight Service, 1308                                              23

  3. Grand Serjeanty, 1319                                             24

  4. Petty Serjeanty, 1329                                             25

  5. An action on the feudal incidents due from lands held by
  petty serjeanty, 1239-40                                             25

  6. Free socage, 1342                                                 26

  7. Commutation of a serjeanty for knight service, 1254               27

  8. Commutation of service for rent, 1269                             27

  9. Subinfeudation, 1278                                              28

  10. Licence for the widow of a tenant in chief to marry, 1316        29

  11. Marriage of a widow without licence, 1338                        30

  12. Alienation of land by a tenant in chief without licence,
  1273                                                                 30

  13. Wardship and marriage, 1179-80                                   30

  14. Grant of an heir's marriage, 1320                                31

  15. Wardship, 1337                                                   31

  16. Collection of a carucage, 1198                                   32

  17. An acquittance of the collectors of scutage of a sum of
  £10 levied by them and repaid, 1319                                  33

  18. Payment of fines in lieu of knight service, 1303                 34

  19. The assessment of a tallage, 1314                                35

  20. A writ _Precipe_, _c._ 1200                            36

  21. Articles of enquiry touching rights and liberties and the
  state of the realm, 1274                                             36

  22. Wreck of sea, 1337                                               40


  SECTION III

  THE JEWS


  1. Charter of liberties to the Jews, 1201                            44

  2. Ordinances of 1253                                                45

  3. Expulsion of a Jew, 1253                                          46

  4. Punishment for non-residence in a Jewry, 1270                     47

  5. Grant of a Jew, 1271                                              47

  6. Ordinances of 1271                                                48

  7. Removal of Jewish communities from certain towns to
  others, 1275                                                         50

  8. Disposition of debts due to Jews after their expulsion,
  1290                                                                 50


  SECTION IV

  THE MANOR


  1. Extent of the manor of Havering, 1306-7                           56

  2. Extracts from the Court Rolls of the manor of Bradford,
  1349-58                                                              65

  3. Deed illustrating the distribution of strips, 1397                76

  4. Regulation of the common fields of Wimeswould, _c._ 1425          76

  5. Lease of a manor to the tenants, 1279                             79

  6. Grant of a manor to the customary tenants at fee farm,
  _ante_ 1272                                                          81

  7. Lease of manorial holdings, 1332                                  82

  8. An agreement between lord and tenants, 1386                       84

  9. Complaints against a reeve, 1278                                  84

  10. An eviction from copyhold land, _temp._ Henry IV.-Henry VI       85

  11. Statute of Merton, 1235-6                                        87

  12. An enclosure allowed, 1236-7                                     88

  13. An enclosure disallowed, 1236-7                                  89

  14. A villein on ancient demesne dismissed to his lord's
  court, 1224                                                          89

  15. Claim to be on ancient demesne defeated, 1237-8                  90

  16. The little writ of right, 1390                                   91

  17. Villeinage established, 1225                                     92

  18. Freedom and freehold established, 1236-7                         93

  19. A villein pleads villeinage on one occasion and denies it
  on another, 1220                                                     93

  20. An assize allowed to a villein, 1225                             95

  21. A freeman holding in villeinage, 1228                            96

  22. Land held by charter recovered from the lord, 1227               97

  23. The manumission of a villein, 1334                               97

  24. Grant of a bondman, 1358                                         98

  25. Imprisonment of a gentleman claimed as a bondman,
  1447                                                                 98

  26. Claim to a villein, _temp._ Henry IV-Henry VI                   100

  27. The effect of the Black Death, 1350                             102

  28. Accounts of the Iron Works of South Frith before and
  after the Black Death, 1345-50                                      103

  29. The Peasants' Revolt, 1381                                      105


  SECTION V

  TOWNS AND GILDS


  1. Payments made to the Crown by gilds in the twelfth
  century, 1179-80                                                    114

  2. Charter of liberties to the borough of Tewkesbury, 1314          116

  3. Charter of liberties to the borough of Gloucester, 1227          119

  4. Dispute between towns touching the payment of toll,
  1222                                                                121

  5. Dispute with a lord touching a gild merchant, 1223-4             123

  6. The affiliation of boroughs, 1227                                124

  7. Bondman received in a borough, 1237-8                            125

  8. An inter-municipal agreement in respect of toll, 1239            126

  9. Enforcement of charter granting freedom from toll, 1416          126

  10. Licence for an alien to be of the Gild Merchant of London,
  1252                                                                127

  11. Dispute between a gild merchant and an abbot, 1304              128

  12. Complaints of the men of Leicester against the lord, 1322       131

  13. Grant of pavage to the lord of a town, 1328                     133

  14. Misappropriation of the tolls levied for pavage, 1336           135

  15. Ordinances of the White Tawyers of London, 1346                 136

  16. Dispute between Masters and Journeymen, 1396                    138

  17. Ordinances of the Dyers of Bristol, 1407                        141

  18. Incorporation of the Haberdashers of London, 1448               144

  19. Indenture of Apprenticeship, 1459                               147

  20. A runaway apprentice, c. 1425                                   148

  21. Incorporation of a gild for religious and charitable uses,
  1447                                                                148


  SECTION VI

  THE REGULATION OF TRADE, INDUSTRY, AND COMMERCE


  1. Assize of Measures, 1197                                         154

  2. Grant to the lord of a manor of the assize of bread and
  ale and other liberties, 1307                                       155

  3. An offence against the assize of bread, 1316                     156

  4. Inquisition touching a proposed market and fair, 1252            157

  5. Grant of a fair at St. Ives to the abbot of Ramsey, 1202         158

  6. Grant of a market at St. Ives to the abbot of Ramsey,
  1293                                                                158

  7. Proceedings in the court at the fair of St. Ives, 1288           159

  8. The Statute of Winchester, 1285                                  160

  9. The recovery of debt on a recognisance, 1293                     161

  10. Procedure at a fair pursuant to the Statute for Merchants,
  1287                                                                162

  11. The aulnage of cloth, 1291                                      163

  12. The Ordinance of Labourers, 1349                                164

  13. Presentments made before the Justices of Labourers,
  1351                                                                167

  14. Excessive prices charged by craftsmen, 1354                     169

  15. Fines levied for excessive wages, 1351                          169

  16. Writ to enforce payment of excess of wages to the collectors
  of a subsidy, 1350                                                  170

  17. Application of fines for excessive wages to a subsidy,
  1351-2                                                              171

  18. Labour Legislation: the Statute of 12 Richard II, 1388          171

  19. Labour Legislation: a Bill in Parliament, 23 Henry VI,
  1444-5                                                              176

  20. Organisation of the Staple, 1313                                178

  21. Arguments for the establishment of home staple towns,
  1319                                                                180

  22. Ordinances of the Staple, 1326                                  181

  23. The election of the mayor and constables of a Staple
  town, 1358                                                          184

  24. Royal letters patent over-ruled by the custom of the
  Staple, _c._ 1436                                                   185

  25. Prohibition of export of materials for making cloth, 1326       186

  26. Commercial policy, _temp._ Edward IV                            187

  27. The perils of foreign travel, 1315                              188

  28. Grant of letters of marque and reprisals, 1447                  190

  29. Grant of liberties to the merchants of Douai, 1260              192

  30. Aliens at a fair, 1270                                          193

  31. Confirmation of liberties to the merchants of Almain,
  1280                                                                194

  32. Alien weavers in London, 1362                                   195

  33. The hosting of aliens, 1442                                     197

  34. An offence against Stat. 18 Henry VI for the hosting
  of aliens, 1440                                                     198

  35. Imprisonment of an alien craftsman, _c._ 1440                   199

  36. Petition against usury, 1376                                    200

  37. Action upon usury, _c._ 1480                                     201


  SECTION VII

  TAXATION, CUSTOMS AND CURRENCY


  1. Form of the taxation of a fifteenth and tenth, 1336              204

  2. Disposition of a subsidy of tonnage and poundage, 1382           206

  3. The king's prise of wines, 1320                                  206

  4. The custom on wool, 1275                                         207

  5. The custom on wine, 1302                                         208

  6. The custom on general imports, 1303                              211

  7. Administration of the search for money exported, 1303            216

  8. Provisions for the currency, 1335                                217

  9. Opinions on the state of English money, 1381-2                   220


  PART II: 1485-1660


  SECTION I

  RURAL CONDITIONS


  1. Villeinage in the Reign of Elizabeth, 1561                       231

  2. Customs of the Manor of High Furness, 1576                       232

  3. Petition in Chancery for Restoration to a Copyhold, _c._
  1550                                                                234

  4. Petition in Chancery for Protection against Breach of
  Manorial Customs, 1568                                              241

  5. Lease of the manor of Ablode to a Farmer, 1516                   245

  6. Lease of the Manor of South Newton to a Farmer, 1568             246

  7. The Agrarian Programme of the Pilgrimage of Grace,
  1536                                                                247

  8. The Demands of the Rebels led by Ket, 1549                       247

  9. Petition to Court of Requests from Tenants Ruined by
  Transference of a Monastic Estate to lay hands, 1553                251

  10. Petition to Court of Requests to stay Proceedings against
  Tenants Pending the Hearing of their Case by the Council of
  the North, 1576                                                     254

  11. Petition from Freeholders of Wootton Bassett for
  Restoration of Rights of Common, _temp._ Charles I                  255

  12. Petition to Crown of Copyholders of North Wheatley,
  1629                                                                258

  13. An Act Avoiding Pulling Down of Towns, 1515                     260

  14. The Commission of Enquiry Touching Enclosures, 1517             262

  15. An Act Concerning Farms and Sheep, 1533                         264

  16. Intervention of Privy Council under Somerset to Protect
  Tenants, 1549                                                       266

  17. An Act for the Maintenance of Husbandry and Tillage,
  1597                                                                268

  18. Speech in House of Commons on Enclosures, 1597                  270

  19. Speeches in House of Commons on Enclosures, 1601                274

  20. Return to Privy Council of Enclosers furnished by
  Justices of Lincolnshire, 1637                                      275

  21. Complaint of Laud's Action on the Commission for
  Depopulation, 1641                                                  276


  SECTION II

  TOWNS AND GILDS


  1. A Protest at Coventry against a Gild's Exclusiveness,
  1495                                                                282

  2. A Complaint from Coventry as to Inter-Municipal
  Tariffs, 1498                                                       282

  3. The Municipal Regulation of Wages at Norwich, 1518               282

  4. The Municipal Regulation of Markets at Coventry,
  1520                                                                283

  5. The Municipal Regulation of Wages at Coventry, 1524              284

  6. An Act for Avoiding of Exactions taken upon Apprentices
  in Cities, Boroughs, and Towns Corporate, 1536                      284

  7. An Act whereby certain Chantries, Colleges, Free Chapels
  and the Possessions of the same be given to the King's Majesty,
  1547                                                                286

  8. Regrant to Coventry and Lynn of Gild Lands Confiscated
  under 1 Edward VI, c. xiv (the preceding Act), 1548                 291

  9. A Petition of the Bakers of Rye to the Mayor, Jurats,
  and Council to prevent the Brewers taking their trade, 1575         294

  10. Letter to Lord Cobham from the Mayor and Jurats of
  Rye concerning the Preceding Petition, 1575                         295

  11. The Municipal Regulation of the Entry into Trade at
  Nottingham, 1578-9                                                  295

  12. The Municipal Regulation of Markets at Southampton,
  1587                                                                296

  13. The Municipal Regulation of Wages at Chester, 1591              296

  14. The Company of Journeymen Weavers of Gloucester,
  1602                                                                297

  15. Petition of Weavers who are not Burgesses, 1604-5               299

  16. Extracts from the London Clothworkers' Court Book.
  1537-1627                                                           300

  17. The Feltmakers Joint-Stock Project, 1611                        302

  18. The Case of the Tailors of Ipswich, 1615                        305

  19. The Grievances of the Journeymen Weavers of London,
  _c._ 1649                                                           307


  SECTION III

  THE REGULATION OF INDUSTRY BY THE STATE


  1. Proposals for the Regulation of the Cloth Manufacture
  (_temp._ Henry VIII)                                                317

  2. Administrative Difficulties in the Regulation of the
  Manufacture of Cloth, 1537                                          319

  3. An Act Touching Weavers, 1555                                    320

  4. Enactment of Common Council of London as to Age of
  Ending Apprenticeship, 1556                                         323

  5. William Cecil's Industrial Programme, 1559                       323

  6. The Statute of Artificers, 1563                                  325

  7. Proposals for the Better Administration of the Statute of
  Artificers, 1572                                                    333

  8. Draft of a Bill Fixing Minimum Rates for Spinners and
  Weavers, 1593                                                       336

  9. Draft Piece-list Submitted for Ratification to the Wiltshire
  Justices by Clothiers and Weavers, 1602                             341

  10. An Act empowering Justices to fix Minimum Rates of
  Payment, 1603-04                                                    342

  11. Administration of Acts Regulating the Manufacture of
  Cloth, 1603                                                         344

  12. Assessment made by the Justices of Wiltshire, dealing
  mainly with other than Textile Workers, 1604                        345

  13. Assessment made by the Justices of Wiltshire, dealing
  mainly with Textile Workers, 1605                                   351

  14. Administration of Wage Clauses of Statute of Artificers,
  1605-08                                                             352

  15. Administration of Apprenticeship Clauses of the Statute
  of Artificers, 1607-08                                              353

  16. The Organisation of the Woollen Industry, 1615                  354

  17. Proceedings on the Apprenticeship Clauses of the Statute
  of Artificers, 1615                                                 356

  18. A Petition to Fix Wages Addressed to the Justices by the
  Textile Workers of Wiltshire, 1623                                  356

  19. Appointment by Privy Council of Commissioners to
  Investigate Grievances of Textile Workers in East
  Anglia, 1630                                                        357

  20. Report to Privy Council of Commissioners appointed
  above, 1630                                                         358

  21. High Wages in the New World, 1645                               360

  22. Young Men and Maids ordered to enter Service, 1655              360

  23. Request to Justices of Grand Jury of Worcestershire to
  assess Wages, 1661                                                  361

  24. Proceedings on the Apprenticeship Clauses of the
  Statute of Artificers, 1669                                         361


  SECTION IV

  THE RELIEF OF THE POOR AND THE REGULATION OF PRICES


  1. Regulations made at Chester as to Beggars, 1539                  366

  2. A Proclamation concerning Corn and Grain to be brought
  into open Markets to be sold, 1545                                  367

  3. Administration of Poor Relief at Norwich, 1571                   369

  4. The first Act Directing the Levy of a Compulsory Poor
  Rate, 1572                                                          372

  5. The first Act requiring the Unemployed to be set to
  Work, 1575-6                                                        373

  6. Report of Justices to Council Concerning Scarcity in
  Norfolk, 1586                                                       373

  7. Orders devised by the Special Commandment of the
  Queen's Majesty for the Relief and Ease of the Present
  Dearth of Grain within the Realm, 1586                              374

  8. The Poor Law Act, 1601                                           380

  9. A note of the Grievances of the Parish of Eldersfield,
  1618                                                                381

  10. Petition to Justices of Wiltshire for Permission to Settle
  in a Parish, 1618                                                   382

  11. Letter from Privy Council to Justices of Cloth-making
  Counties, 1621-2                                                    382

  12. Letter from Privy Council to the Deputy Lieutenants and
  Justices of the Peace in the Counties of Suffolk and Essex
  concerning the Employment of the Poor, 1629                         383

  13. The Licensing of Badgers in Somersetshire, 1630                 385

  14. Badgers Licensed at Somersetshire Quarter Sessions,
  1630                                                                385

  15. The Supplying of Bristol with Grain, 1630-1                     385

  16. Proceedings against Engrossers and other Offenders,
  1631                                                                386

  17. Order of Somersetshire Justices Granting a Settlement
  to a Labourer, 1630-1                                               386

  18. Report of Derbyshire Justices on their Proceedings,
  1631                                                                387

  19. Letter from Privy Council to Justices of Rutlandshire,
  1631                                                                390

  20. Judgment in the Star Chamber against an Engrosser of
  Corn, 1631                                                          391


  SECTION V

  THE ENCOURAGEMENT OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE


  1. Letters Patent granted to the Cabots by Henry VII,
  1496                                                                400

  2. The Merchant Adventurers' Case for Allowing the
  Export of Undressed Cloth, 1514-36                                  402

  3. The Rise in Prices, the Encouragement of Corn growing,
  and the Protection of Manufactures, c. 1549                         404

  4. Sir Thomas Gresham on the Fall of the Exchanges, 1558            416

  5. The reasons why Bullion is Exported (_temp. Eliz._)              419

  6. The Italian Merchants Explain the Foreign Exchanges,
  1576                                                                420

  7. An Act Avoiding divers Foreign Wares made by Handicraftsmen
  Beyond the Seas, 1562                                               424

  8. An Act Touching Cloth Workers and Cloth Ready
  Wrought to be Shipped over the Sea, 1566                            426

  9. Incorporation of a Joint Stock Mining Company, 1568              427

  10. An Act for the Increase of Tillage, 1571                        428

  11. Instructions for an English Factor in Turkey, 1582              431

  12. The Advantages of Colonies, 1583                                434

  13. Lord Burghley to Sir Christopher Hatton on the State of
  Trade, 1587                                                         438

  14. A List of Patents and Monopolies, 1603                          440

  15. Instructions Touching the Bill for Free Trade, 1604             443

  16. The Establishment of a Company to export Dyed and
  Dressed Cloth in place of the Merchant Adventurers,
  1616-17                                                             454

  17. Sir Julius Cæsar's proposals for Reviving the Trade in
  Cloths, 1616                                                        460

  18. The Grant of a Monopoly for the Manufacture of Soap,
  1623                                                                461

  19. The Statute of Monopolies, 1623-4                               465

  20. An Act for the Free Trade of Welsh Cloths, 1623-4               468

  21. The Economic Policy of Strafford in Ireland, 1636               470

  22. Revocation of Commissions, Patents and Monopolies
  Granted by the Crown, 1639                                          472

  23. Ordinance establishing an Excise, 1643                          475


  PART III: 1660-1846


  SECTION I

  INDUSTRIAL ORGANISATION AND SOCIAL CONDITIONS


  1. Defoe's account of the West Riding Cloth Industry, 1724          482

  2. Defoe's account of the Woollen Trade (_temp._ George II)         483

  3. Defoe's account of the Corn Trade (_temp._ George II)            487

  4. Defoe's account of the Coal Trade (_temp._ George II)            491

  5. A description of Middlemen in the Woollen Industry, 1739         492

  6. Report on the Condition of Children in Lancashire Cotton
  Factories, 1796                                                     495

  7. Newcastle Coal Vend, 1771-1830                                   497

  8. The Old Apprenticeship System in the Woollen Industry, 1806      499

  9. A Petition of Cotton Weavers, 1807                               500

  10. Depression of Wages and its Causes in the Cotton Industry,
  1812                                                                501

  11. Evidence of the Condition of Children in Factories, 1816        502

  12. Change in the Cotton Industry and the Introduction
  of Power Loom Weaving, 1785-1807                                    505

  13. Evidence by Factory Workers of the Condition of
  Children, 1832                                                      510

  14. Women's and Children's Labour in Mines, 1842                    516

  15. Description of the Condition of Manchester by John
  Robertson, Surgeon, 1840                                            519


  SECTION II

  AGRICULTURE AND ENCLOSURE


  1. Enclosure Proceedings in the Court of Chancery, 1671             525

  2. Advice to the Stewards of Estates, 1731                          526

  3. Procedure for Enclosure by Private Act, 1766                     528

  4. Farming in Norfolk, 1771                                         530

  5. A Petition against Enclosure, 1797                               531

  6. Extracts on Enclosure from the Surveys of the Board
  of Agriculture, 1798-1809                                           532

  7. Arthur Young's Criticism of Enclosure, 1801                      536

  8. Enclosure Consolidating Act, 1801                                537

  9. General Enclosure Act, 1845                                      541


  SECTION III

  GOVERNMENT REGULATION OF WAGES, CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT,
  AND PUBLIC HEALTH


  1. An Act against Truck, 1701                                       545

  2. A Wages Assessment at a Warwickshire Quarter Sessions,
  1738                                                                546

  3. Spitalfields Weavers Act, 1773                                   547

  4. A Middlesex Wages Assessment under the Spitalfields
  Act, 1773                                                           551

  5. Agricultural Labourers' Proposals for a Sliding Scale of
  Wages, 1795                                                         552

  6. Debates on Whitbread's Minimum Wage Bill, 1795-6                 554

  7. Arbitration Act for the Cotton Industry, 1800                    568

  8. Amendment of the Arbitration Act, 1804                           570

  9. The First Factory Act, 1802                                      571

  9  A. Minutes of Committee on Children in Factories                 573

  10. Calico Printers' Petition for Regulation, 1804                  573

  11. Report on Calico Printers' Petition, 1806                       574

  12. Cotton Weavers' Petition against the Repeal of 5 Elizabeth,
  _c._ 4, 1813                                                        576

  13. Debates on the Regulation of Apprentices, 1813-14               577

  14. Resolutions of the Watchmakers on Apprenticeship, 1817          588

  15. Report of the Committee on the Ribbon Weavers, 1818             590

  16. The Cotton Factory Act of 1819                                  591

  17. Oastler's First Letter on Yorkshire Slavery, 1830               592

  18. Factory Act, 1833                                               594

  19. Proposals for a Wages Board for Hand-Loom Weavers,
  1834                                                                596

  20. Coal Mines Regulation Act, 1842                                 598

  21. Debate on Factory Legislation, 1844                             599

  22. Factory Act, 1844                                               612

  23. Recommendations of the Commission on the Health of
  Towns, 1845                                                         614


  SECTION IV

  COMBINATIONS OF WORKMEN


  1. A Strike of the Journeymen Feltmakers, 1696-99                   619

  2. A Petition of Master Tailors against Combination among
  the Journeymen, 1721                                                622

  3. A Dispute in the Northumberland and Durham Coal
  Industry, 1765                                                      625

  4. Sickness and Unemployment Benefit Clubs among the
  Woolcombers, 1794                                                   626

  5. Combination Act, 1799                                            626

  6. Combination Act, 1800                                            627

  7. The Scottish Weavers' Strike, 1812                               631

  8. The Repeal of the Combination Acts, 1824                         633

  9. A Prosecution of Strikers under the Common Law of
  Conspiracy, 1810                                                    635

  10. An Act Revising the Law affecting Combinations, 1825            636

  11. The Conviction of the Dorchester Labourers, 1834                638

  12. An Address of the Working Men's Association to Queen
  Victoria, 1837                                                      641

  13. A Chartist Manifesto on the Sacred Month, 1839                  642

  14. The Rochdale Pioneers, 1844                                     643


  SECTION V

  THE RELIEF OF THE POOR


  1. Settlement Law, 1662                                             647

  2. Defoe's Pamphlet "Giving Alms no Charity," 1704                  649

  3. The Workhouse Test Act, 1722                                     650

  4. Gilbert's Act, 1782                                              652

  5. Speenhamland "Act of Parliament," 1795                           655

  6. The Workhouse System, 1797                                       657

  7. Two Varieties of the Roundsman System of Relief, 1797            660

  8. Another Example of the Roundsman System, 1808                    660

  9. A Report of the Poor Law Commission, 1834                        661

  10. The Poor Law Amendment Act, 1834                                663

  11. Outdoor Relief Prohibitory Order, 1844                          664


  SECTION VI

  FINANCE AND FOREIGN TRADE


  1. Act abolishing Tenure by Knight Service, etc., 1660              670

  2. Navigation Act, 1660                                             670

  3. Proposals for Free Exportation of Gold and Silver, 1660          671

  4. An Attack on the Navigation Act, _c._ 1663                       672

  5. Free Coinage at the Mint Proclaimed, 1666                        674

  6. The East India Company and the Interlopers, 1684                 675

  7. Foundation of the Bank of England, 1694                          676

  8. The Need for the Recoinage of 1696                               677

  9. Speech by Sir Robert Walpole on the Salt Duties, 1732            678

  10. Pitt's Sinking Fund Act, 1786                                   679

  11. The Suspension of Cash Payments, 1797                           681

  12. Pitt's Speech on the Income Tax, 1798                           683

  13. Foreign Trade in the early Nineteenth Century, 1812             689

  14. Debate on the Corn Laws, 1815                                   692

  15. The Corn Law of 1815                                            697

  16. Free Trade Petition, 1820                                       698

  17. The Foundation of the Anti-Corn-Law League, 1839                701

  18. The Bank Charter Act, 1844                                      702

  19. Debate on the Corn Laws, 1846                                   705



PART I: 1000-1485



SECTION I

THE EARLY ENGLISH MANOR AND BOROUGH

   1. Rights and Duties of All Persons [_Rectitudines singularum
   personarum_], _c._ 1000--2. The form of the Domesday Inquest,
   1086--3. The borough of Dover, 1086--4. The borough of Norwich,
   1086--5. The borough of Wallingford, 1086--6. The customs of
   Berkshire, 1086--7. Land of the Church of Worcester, 1086--8. The
   manor of Rockland, 1086--9. The manor of Halesowen, 1086--10. The
   manor of Havering, 1086.


The task of reconstructing the economic life of Saxon England is not
easy, and while the document translated below (No. 1) vividly analyses
the obligations and rights of the various classes of tenants and
officers on Saxon estates of the eleventh century, it raises many
difficulties and is probably only true for the more settled parts of the
country. It affords, however, clear proof of a high agricultural and
social development; and though the exact significance of specific terms,
and the status of different classes, may remain obscure, a comparison of
the _Rectitudines_ and the _Gerefa_[2] with later extents and custumals,
and with Domesday Book itself, establishes the essential continuity of
English economic life and customs, notwithstanding the shock of the
Norman Conquest.

The further study of Domesday Book will undoubtedly yield valuable
results supplementing the information derived from Saxon documents.
While it is primarily a supreme example of the defining spirit and
centralising energy of the conquering race, it is also a permanent
record of England before and at the time of the Norman invasion.
Especially, perhaps, is this apparent in the detailed descriptions of
the boroughs, which at once set forth Saxon customs and illustrate the
effects of the Conquest. The extracts given below are intended to show
in brief, first, the methods both of the commissioners who conducted the
survey, and of the officials who reduced the information to a common
form;[3] second, the fiscal preoccupation of the government; third, the
origin and character of the early borough, especially manifest in the
case of Wallingford (No. 5), and fourth, the different classes of
tenants, free and unfree. Of particular interest are the following
features: the manner of levying the feudal army (No. 6), the evidence of
the looser organisation of the Eastern Counties, and the greater degree
of freedom prevailing among tenants in the Danelaw (Nos. 4 and 8), the
ample franchises that might be enjoyed by a great Saxon prelate (No. 7),
the saltpans of Worcestershire (No. 9), and the gildhall of the
burgesses of Dover (No. 3).


AUTHORITIES

   The more accessible writers dealing with the subject of this section
   are:--Kemble, _The Saxons in England_; Maine, _Village Communities in
   the East and West_; Seebohm, _The English Village Community_;
   Vinogradoff, _Villeinage in England_, _The Growth of the Manor_, and,
   _English Society in the Eleventh Century_; Andrews, _The Old English
   Manor_; Maitland, _Domesday Book and Beyond_; Pollock and Maitland,
   _History of English Law_; Ballard, _The Domesday Boroughs_, and, _The
   Domesday Inquest_; Round, _Domesday Studies_, and, _The Domesday
   Manor_ (Eng. Hist. Rev. xv.); Stubbs, _Constitutional History_, and,
   _Lectures on Mediæval History_; Ellis, _Introduction to Domesday
   Book_; Gomme, _The Village Community_; de Coulanges, _Origin of
   Property in Land_; Freeman, _The History of the Norman Conquest of
   England_; Petit Dutaillis, _Studies Supplementary to Stubbs'
   Constitutional History_.

   Almost the whole of Domesday Book has now been translated and is
   printed county by county in the Victoria County History series.

   For a general survey of the Saxon period the student should refer to
   Cunningham, _Growth of English Industry and Commerce, Mediæval
   Times_, pp. 28-133.


1. RIGHTS AND DUTIES OF ALL Persons [_Rectitudines Singularum
Personarum_. _Cambridge_, _Corpus Christi_, 383], c. 1000.

_The Thegn's Law._--The thegn's law is that he be worthy of his
book-right,[4] and that he do three things for his land, fyrdfare,[5]
burhbote[6] and bridge-work. Also from many lands a greater land-service
arises at the king's command, such as the deer-hedge at the king's abode
and provision of warships (_scorp to fyrdscipe_)[7] and sea-ward and
head-ward[8] and fyrd-ward, almsfee and churchscot, and many other
diverse things.

_The Geneat's Service._--Geneat-service is diverse according to the
custom of the estate. On some he must pay land-gafol[9] and
grass-swine[10] yearly, and ride and carry and lead loads, work, and
feast the lord, and reap and mow and cut the deer-hedge and maintain it,
build and hedge the burh,[11] bring strange wayfarers to the tun, pay
churchscot and almsfee, keep head-ward and horse-ward, go errands far
and near whithersoever he be told.

_The Cotter's Service._--The cotter's service is according to the custom
of the estate. On some he must work for his lord each Monday throughout
the year and for three days each week in harvest. On some he works
through the whole harvest every day and reaps an acre of oats for a
day's work, and he shall have his sheaf which the reeve or lord's
servant will give him.[12] He ought not to pay land-gafol. It bents him
to have 5 acres; more, if it be the custom of the estate; and if it be
less, it is too little, because his work shall be oft required; he shall
pay his hearth-penny on Holy Thursday, as all free men should; and he
shall defend his lord's inland,[13] if he be required, from sea-ward and
the king's deer-hedge and from such things as befit his degree; and he
shall pay his churchscot at Martinmas.

_The Gebur's Services._--The gebur's services are diverse, in come
places heavy, in others moderate; on some estates he must work two days
at week-work at such work as is bidden him every week throughout the
year, and in harvest three days at week-work, and from Candlemas[14] to
Easter three. If he do carrying, he need not work while his horse is
out. He must pay on Michaelmas[15] Day 10 gafol-pence, and on
Martinmas[16] Day 23 sesters of barley and two henfowls, at Easter a
young sheep or two pence; and from Martinmas to Easter he must lie at
the lord's fold as often as his turn comes; and from the time of the
first ploughing to Martinmas he must plough an acre every week and
himself fetch the seed in the lord's barn; also 3 acres at boonwork and
2 for grass-earth[17]; if he need more grass, he shall earn it as he
shall be allowed; for his gafol-earth he shall plough 3 acres[18] and
sow it from his own barn; and he shall pay his hearth-penny; two and two
they shall feed a hunting-hound; and every gebur shall pay 6 loaves to
the lord's swineherd when he drives his herd to mast. On the same lands
where the above customs hold good, it belongs to the gebur that he be
given for his land-stock[19] 2 oxen and 1 cow and 6 sheep and 7 acres
sown on his yardland; wherefore after that year he shall do all the
customs that befit him; and he shall be given tools for his work and
vessels for his house. When death befals him, his lord shall take back
the things which he leaves.

This land-law holds good on some lands, but, as I have said before, in
some places it is heavier, in others lighter, for all land-customs are
not alike. On some lands the gebur must pay honey-gafol, on some
meat-gafol, on some ale-gafol. Let him who keeps the shire take heed
that he knows what are the ancient uses of the land and what the custom
of the people.

_Of those who keep the Bees._--It belongs to the bee-churl, if he keep
the gafol-hives, that he give as is customary on the estate. Among us it
is customary that he give 5 sesters of honey for gafol; on some estates
more gafol is wont to be rendered. Also he must be oft ready for many
works at the lord's will, besides boon-ploughing and bedrips[20] and
meadow-mowing; and if he be well landed[21], he must have a horse that
he may lend it to the lord for carrying or drive it himself
whithersoever he be told; and many things a man so placed must do; I
cannot now tell all. When death befals him, the lord shall have back the
things which he leaves, save what is free.

_Of the Swineherd._--It belongs to the gafol-paying swineherd that he
give of his slaughter according to the custom of the estate. On many
estates the custom is that he give every year 15 swine for sticking, 10
old and 5 young, and have himself what he breeds beyond that. To many
estates a heavier swine-service belongs. Let the swineherd take heed
also that after sticking he prepare and singe well his slaughtered
swine; then is he right worthy of the entrails, and, as I said before of
the bee-keeper, he must be oft ready for any work, and have a horse for
his lord's need. The unfree swineherd and the unfree bee-keeper, after
death, shall be worthy of one same law.

_Of the Serf-Swineherd._--To the serf swineherd who keeps the inherd[22]
belong a sucking-pig from the sty and the entrails when he has prepared
bacon, and further the customs which befit the unfree.

_Of Men's Board_.--To a bondservant (_esne_) belong for board 12 pounds
of good corn and 2 sheep-carcases and a good meat-cow, and wood,
according to the custom of the estate.

_Of Women's Board._--To unfree women belong 8 pounds of corn for food,
one sheep or 3d. for winter fare, one sester of beans for Lent fare, in
summer whey or 1d.

To all serfs belong a mid-Winter feast and an Easter feast, a
ploughacre[23] and a harvest handful,[24] besides their needful dues.

_Of Followers._[25]--It belongs to the follower that in 12 months he
earn two acres, the one sown and the other unsown; he shall sow them
himself, and his board and provision of shoes and gloves belong to him;
if he may earn more, it shall be to his own behoof.

_Of the Sower._--It belongs to the sower that he have a basketful of
every kind of seed when he have well sown each sowing throughout the
year.

_Of the Ox-herd._--The ox-herd may pasture 2 oxen or more with the
lord's herd in the common pastures by witness of his ealdorman[26]; and
thereby may earn shoes and gloves for himself; and his meat-cow may go
with the lord's oxen.

_Of the Cow-herd._--It belongs to the cow-herd that he have an old cow's
milk for seven days after she has newly calved, and the beestings[27]
for fourteen nights; and his meat-cow shall go with the lord's cow.

_Of Sheep-herds._--The sheep-herd's right is that he have 12 nights'
manure at mid-Winter and 1 lamb of the year's increase, and the fleece
of 1 bellwether and the milk of his flock for seven nights after the
equinox and a bowlful of whey or buttermilk all the summer.

_Of the Goat-herd._--To the goat-herd belongs his herd's milk after
Martinmas Day and before that his share of whey and one kid of the
year's increase, if he have well cared for his herd.

_Of the Cheese-maker._--To the cheese-maker belong 100 cheeses, and that
she make butter of the wring-whey[28] for the lord's table; and she
shall have for herself all the buttermilk save the herd's share.

_Of the Barn-keeper._--To the barn-keeper belong the corn-droppings in
harvest at the barn-door, if his ealdorman give it him and he faithfully
earn it.

_Of the Beadle._--It belongs to the beadle that for his office he be
freeer from work than another man, for that he must be oft ready; also
to him belongs a strip of land for his toil.

_Of the Woodward._--To the woodward belongs every windfall-tree.

_Of the Hayward._--To the hayward it belongs that his toil be rewarded
with land at the ends of the fields that lie by the pasture meadow; for
he may expect that if he first neglects this, to his charge will be laid
damage to the crops; and if a strip of land be allowed to him, this
shall be by folk-right next the pasture meadow, for that if out of sloth
he neglect his lord, his own land shall not be well defended, if it be
found so; but if he defend well all that he shall hold, then shall he be
right worthy of a good reward.

Land-laws are diverse, as I said before, nor do we fix for all places
these customs that we have before spoken of, but we shew forth what is
accustomed there where it is known to us; if we learn aught better, that
will we gladly cherish and keep, according to the customs of the place
where we shall then dwell; for gladly should he learn the law among the
people, who wishes not himself to lose honour in the country.
Folk-customs are many; in some places there belong to the people
winter-feast, Easter-feast, boon-feast for harvest, a drinking feast for
ploughing, rick-meat,[29] mowing reward, a wainstick at wood-loading, a
stack-cup[30] at corn-loading, and many things that I cannot number. But
this is a reminder for men, yea, all that I have set forth above.[31]

[Footnote 2: _See_ Cunningham, _Growth of English Industry and
Commerce_, i., 570-576.]

[Footnote 3: _cf._ _Dialogus de Scaccario_: "Finally, that nothing might
be thought lacking, he brought the whole of his far-seeing measures to
completion by despatching from his side his wisest men in circuit
throughout the realm. The latter made a careful survey of the whole
land, in woods and pastures and meadows and arable lands also, which was
reduced to a common phraseology and compiled into a book, that every man
might be content with his own right and not encroach with impunity on
that of another."]

[Footnote 4: The right conferred by his book or charter.]

[Footnote 5: Military service.]

[Footnote 6: Repair of the king's castles or boroughs.]

[Footnote 7: Reading with Leo _fyrdscipe_ for _frithscipe_. For the
difficult word "_scorp_" cf. Pat. 9 John m. 3. _Rex omnibus scurmannis
et marinellis et mercatoribus Anglie per mare itinerantibus. Sciatis nos
misisse Alanum ... et alios fideles nostros scurimannos ... ad omnes
naves quas invenerint per mare arrestandas._]

[Footnote 8: Guard of the king's person.]

[Footnote 9: Rent or tribute. Gafol is sometimes a tax payable to the
king, and sometimes a rent or dues payable to the lord.]

[Footnote 10: Payment for pasturing swine.]

[Footnote 11: The lord's house.]

[Footnote 12: This clause appears only in the Latin version.]

[Footnote 13: _i.e._, Acquit his lord's inland or demesne.]

[Footnote 14: February 2.]

[Footnote 15: September 29.]

[Footnote 16: November 11.]

[Footnote 17: Pasture-land.]

[Footnote 18: _i.e._, He must plough 3 acres as his rent (gafol).]

[Footnote 19: Outfit.]

[Footnote 20: Reaping at the lord's command.]

[Footnote 21: If he have good land, good, that is, either in quality or
quantity or both.]

[Footnote 22: The lord's herd.]

[Footnote 23: An acre for ploughing.]

[Footnote 24: A sheaf from each acre in harvest.]

[Footnote 25: A free but landless retainer.]

[Footnote 26: The reeve (gerefa).]

[Footnote 27: The first milk of a milch-cow after calving.]

[Footnote 28: The residue after the last pressing of the cheese.]


2. THE FORM OF THE DOMESDAY INQUEST [_Inquisitio Eliensis, Domesday
Book, Additamenta, p. 497_], 1086.

Here below is written the inquest of the lands, in what manner the
King's barons enquire, to wit, by the oath of the sheriff of the shire,
and of all the barons and their Frenchmen and of the whole hundred, of
the priest, the reeve, six villeins of each town. Then how the manor is
named; who held it in the time of King Edward; who holds it now; how
many hides; how many ploughs on the demesne, and how many of the men;
how many villeins; how many cotters; how many serfs; how many freemen;
how many socmen; how much wood; how much meadow; how many pastures; how
many mills; how many fishponds; how much has been added or taken away;
how much it was worth altogether; and how much now; how much each
freeman or socman there had or has. All this for three periods; to wit,
in the time of King Edward; and when King William granted it; and as it
is now; and if more can be had therefrom than is had.

[Footnote 29: A feast on the completion of the hayrick.]

[Footnote 30: Probably a feast at the completion of corn-stacking.]

[Footnote 31: The best printed text is in Liebermann, _Die Gesetze der
Angelsachsen,_ I. 444.]


3. THE BOROUGH OF DOVER [_Domesday Book, I, 1_], 1086.

Dover in the time of King Edward rendered 18l., of which money King
Edward had two parts and Earl Godwin the third. On the contrary the
canons of St. Martin had another moiety.[32] The burgesses gave twenty
ships to the King once a year for fifteen days and in each ship were
twenty-one men. This they did for that he had fully granted to them sac
and soc.[33] When the King's messengers came there, they gave for the
passage of a horse 3d. in winter and 2d. in summer. The burgesses,
however, found a pilot and one other assistant, and if need were for
more, it was hired from the messenger's own money.

From the feast of St. Michael[34] to the feast of St. Andrew[35] the
King's truce (that is, peace) was in the town. If any man broke it, the
King's reeve received therefor common amends.

Whosoever, dwelling in the town continually, rendered custom to the
King, was quit of toll throughout all England.

All these customs were there when King William came to England.

Upon his very first coming to England the town was burned, and therefore
the value thereof could not be computed, how much it was worth when the
Bishop of Bayeux received it. Now it is valued at 40l., and yet the
reeve renders therefrom 54l., that is, to the King 24l. of pence which
are twenty in the ounce (_ora_)[36] and to the Earl 30l. by tale.

In Dover there are 29 messuages, from which the King has lost the
custom. Of these Robert of Romney has two, Ralph de Curbespine three,
William son of Tedald one, William son of Oger one, William son of
Tedold and Robert Niger six, William son of Goisfrid three, in which was
the gildhall of the burgesses, Hugh de Montfort one house, Durand one,
Ranulf de Columbels one, Wadard six, the son of Modbert one. And all
these of these houses avow the Bishop of Bayeux as their protector,
donor and grantor.

Of the messuage which Ranulf de Columbels holds, which belonged to an
exile (that is, an outlaw), they agree that half the land is the King's,
and Ranulf himself has both. Humphrey the Bandylegged (_Loripes_) holds
one messuage wherefrom half the forfeiture was the King's. Roger de
Ostreham made a house over the King's water and has held hitherto the
King's custom. And the house was not there in the time of King Edward.

At the entry of the port of Dover there is a mill which by great
disturbance of the sea shatters almost all ships, and does the greatest
damage to the King and the men; and it was not there in the time of King
Edward. Touching this the nephew of Herbert says that the Bishop of
Bayeux granted to his uncle Herbert son of Ivo that it should be made.

[Footnote 32: There was clearly a difference of opinion.]

[Footnote 33: Rights and profits of jurisdiction.]

[Footnote 34: September 29.]

[Footnote 35: November 30.]

[Footnote 36: _cf_. Fleta ii. 12: "_Viginti denarii faciunt unciam_."]


4. THE BOROUGH OF NORWICH [_Domesday Book, II_, 116], 1086.

In Norwich there were in the time of King Edward 1320 burgesses. Of whom
one was so much the King's own (_dominicus_) that he could not withdraw
nor do homage without his licence; whose name was Edstan. He had 18
acres of land and 12 of meadow and 2 churches in the borough and a sixth
part of a third; and to one church pertained a messuage in the borough
and 6 acres of meadow. This borough Roger Bigot holds of the King's
gift. And of 1238 burgesses the King and the Earl had soc and sac[37]
and custom; and over 50 Stigand had soc and sac and commendation[38];
and over 32 Harold had soc and sac and commendation; of whom one was so
much his own (_dominicus_) that he could not withdraw nor do homage
without his licence. In all they all had 80 acres of land and 20 acres
and a half of meadow; and of these one was a woman, Stigand's sister,
with 32 acres of land; and between them all they had half a mill and the
fourth part of a mill, and still have; and in addition they had 12 acres
and a half of meadow which Wihenoc took from them; now Rainald son of
Ivo has the same; and in addition 2 acres of meadow which belonged to
the church of All Saints; these also Wihenoc took, and now Rainald has
them. There is also in the borough a church of St. Martin which Stigand
held in the time of King Edward, and 12 acres of land; William de
Noiers has it now as part of the fee of Stigand. Stigand also held a
church of St. Michael, to which belong 112 acres of land and 6 of meadow
and 1 plough. This Bishop William holds, but not of the bishopric. And
the burgesses held 15 churches to which belonged in almoin 181 acres of
land and meadow. And in the time of King Edward 12 burgesses held the
church of Holy Trinity; now the bishop holds it of the gift of King
William. The King and the Earl had 180 acres of land. The Abbot has a
moiety of the church of St. Lawrence and one house of St. Edmund. This
was all in the time of King Edward. Now there are in the borough 665
English burgesses and they render the customs; and 480 bordiers who
owing to poverty render no custom. And on that land which Stigand held
in the time of King Edward there dwell now 39 burgesses of those above;
and on the same land there are 9 messuages empty. And on that land of
which Harold had the soke there are 15 burgesses and 17 empty messuages
which are in the occupation of the castle. And in the borough are 190
empty messuages in that part which was in the soke of the King and Earl,
and 81 in the occupation of the castle. In the borough are further 50
houses from which the King has not his custom.... And in the borough the
burgesses hold 43 chapels. And the whole of this town rendered in the
time of King Edward 20l. to the King and to the Earl 10l. and besides
this 21s. 4d. for allowances and 6 quarts of honey and 1 bear and 6 dogs
for bear-[baiting]. And now 70l. king's weight and 100s. by tale as
gersum to the Queen and 1 goshawk and 20l. blanch to the Earl and 20s.
by tale as gersum to Godric.... Of the burgesses who dwelt in Norwich 22
have gone away and dwell in Beccles, a town of the abbot of St. Edmund,
and 6 in Humbleyard hundred, and have left the borough, and in King's
Thorpe 1, and on the land of Roger Bigot 1, and under W. de Noies 1, and
Richard de Sent Cler 1. Those fleeing and the others remaining are
altogether ruined, partly owing to the forfeitures of Earl Ralph, partly
owing to a fire, partly owing to the King's geld, partly through
Waleram.

In this borough if the bishop wishes he can have one moneyer....

_Land of the Burgesses._--In the hundred of Humbleyard always 80 acres
and 14 bordiers and 1 plough and 3 acres of meadow; and they are worth
13s. 4d.

_The French of Norwich._--In the new borough are 36 burgesses and 6
Englishmen and of yearly custom each one rendered 1d. besides
forfeitures; of all this the King had two parts and the Earl the third.
Now there are 41 French burgesses on the demesne of the King and the
Earl, and Roger Bigot has 50, and Ralph de Bella Fago 14, and Hermer 8,
and Robert the crossbowman 5, and Fulcher, the abbot's man, 1, and Isac
1, and Ralph Visus Lupi 1, and in the Earl's bakehouse Robert Blund has
3, and Wimer has 1 ruined messuage.

All this land of the burgesses was on the demesne of Earl Ralph and he
granted it to the King in common to make the borough between himself and
the King, as the sheriff testifies. And all those lands as well of the
knights as of the burgesses render to the King his custom. There is also
in the new borough a church which Earl Ralph made, and he gave it to his
chaplains. Now a priest of the sheriff, by name Wala, holds it of the
King's gift, and it is worth 60s. And so long as Robert Blund held the
county, he had therefrom each year 1 ounce of gold.

[Footnote 37: _i.e._, Rights of jurisdiction.]

[Footnote 38: _i.e._, Feudal lordship.]


5. THE BOROUGH OF WALLINGFORD [_Domesday Book, I_, 56], 1086.

In the borough of Wallingford King Edward had 8 virgates of land, and in
these there were 276 haws[39] rendering 11l. of rent (_gablo_), and
those who dwelt there did service for the King with horses or by water
as far as Blewbury, Reading, Sutton, Bensington, and to those doing this
service the reeve gave hire or corrody not from the king's revenue
(_censu_) but from his own.

Now there are in the borough all customs as there were before. But of
the haws there are thirteen less; for the castle eight have been
destroyed, and the moneyer has one quit so long as he makes money. Saulf
of Oxford has one, the son of Alsi of Farringdon one, which the King
gave him, as he says. Humphrey Visdelew has one, for which he claims the
King to warranty. Nigel holds one of Henry by inheritance from Soarding,
but the burgesses testify that the latter never had it. From these
thirteen the King has no custom; and further William de Warenne has one
haw from which the King has no custom. Moreover there are 22 messuages
of Frenchmen rendering 6s. 5d.

King Edward had 15 acres in which housecarles dwelt. Miles Crispin holds
them, they know not how. One of these belongs to[40] (_jacet in_)
Wittenham, a manor of Walter Giffard.

Bishop Walchelin has 27 haws rendering 25s. and they are valued in
Brightwell, his manor.

The abbot of Abingdon has 2 acres on which are 7 messuages rendering
4s., and they pertain to Oxford.

Miles has 20 messuages rendering 12s. 10d., and they belong to (_jacent
in_) Newnham, and also one acre on which there are 6 haws rendering 18d.
In Hazeley he has 6 messuages rendering 44d. In Stoke one messuage
rendering 12d. In Chalgrove one messuage rendering 4d. In Sutton one
acre on which there are 6 messuages rendering 12d., and in Bray one acre
and 11 messuages rendering 3s. there. All this land pertains to
Oxfordshire; nevertheless it is in Wallingford....

Alwold and Godric have the rent (_gablum_) of their houses and bloodwite
if blood is shed there, if the man should be received within them before
he be claimed by the King's reeve, except on Saturday owing to the
market, because then the King has the forfeiture; and they have the fine
for adultery and theft in their houses; but other forfeitures are the
King's.

In the time of King Edward the borough was worth 30l. and afterwards
40l.; now 60l. And yet it renders of farm 80l. by tale. What pertains to
Adbrei is worth 7s. and the land of Miles Moli 24s. What the abbot of
Abingdon has is worth 8s. What Roger de Laci has, 7s. What Rainald has,
4s.

The underwritten thegns of Oxfordshire had land in Wallingford.

Archbishop Lanfranc, 4 houses pertaining to Newington rendering 6s.
Bishop Remigius, one house pertaining to Dorchester rendering 12d. The
abbot of St. Alban one house rendering 4s. Abbot R. one house in Ewelme
rendering 3s.

Earl Hugh, one house in Pyrton rendering 3s.

Walter Giffard, 3 houses in Caversham rendering 2s.

Roger de Olgi, 2 houses in Watlington rendering 2s. and one house in
Perie rendering 2s.

Ilbert de Lacy and Roger son of Seifrid and Orgar, 3 houses rendering
4s.

Hugh de Bolebec 3 houses in Crem rendering 3s.

Hugh Grando de Scoca, one house rendering 12d.

Drogo, in Shirburne and in Weston, 3 houses rendering 4s.

Robert Armenteres, in Ewelme, one house rendering 12d.

Wazo, one house in Ewelme rendering 3s.

[Footnote 39: _i.e._, Houses.]

[Footnote 40: Or, "is valued in."]


6. CUSTOMS OF BERKSHIRE [_Domesday Book, I_, 56], 1086.

When geld was given in the time of King Edward in common throughout the
whole of Berkshire, a hide gave 3-1/2d. before Christmas and as much at
Whitsuntide. If the King sent an army anywhere, from 5 hides went one
knight only, and for his food or wages 4s. were given to him from each
hide for two months. This money, however, was not sent to the King, but
was given to the knights. If anyone summoned for military service went
not, he forfeited to the King the whole of his land. And if anyone
stayed behind and promised to send another in his place, and yet he who
was to be sent stayed behind, his lord was quit for 50s. A thegn or
knight of the King's own (_dominicus_) left to the King at death for
relief all his arms and one horse with a saddle and one without a
saddle. And if he had hounds or hawks, they were presented to the King,
that he might receive them if he would. If anyone killed a man having
the King's peace, he forfeited to the King both his body and all his
substance. He who broke into a city by night made amends in 100s. to the
King, not to the sheriff. He who was warned to beat the woods for
hunting and went not, made amends to the King in 50s.


7. LAND OF THE CHURCH OF WORCESTER [_Domesday Book, I_, 172_b_], 1086.

The church of St. Mary of Worcester has a hundred which is called
Oswaldslaw, in which lie 300 hides, wherefrom the bishop of that church,
by a constitution of ancient times, has all the profits of the sokes and
all the customs belonging thereto for his own board and for the king's
service and his own, so that no sheriff can have any plaint there,
neither in any plea nor in any cause whatsoever. This the whole county
testifies. These aforesaid 300 hides were of the demesne itself of the
church, and if anything thereof had been in any wise demised or granted
to any man soever, to serve the bishop therewith, he who held the land
granted to him could not retain for himself any custom at all therefrom,
save through the bishop, nor could he retain the land save until the
completed term which they had determined between themselves, nor could
he go anywhither with that land.


8. THE MANOR OF ROCKLAND, CO. NORFOLK [_Domesday Book, II_, 164, 164
_b_], 1086.

In Rockland Simon holds 3 carucates of land which one freeman, Brode,
held in the time of King Edward. Then as now 2 villeins and 12
bordiers.[41] Then 4 serfs, now 1, and 8 acres of meadow; then as now 2
ploughs on the demesne and 1 plough among the men. Wood for 6 swine.
Then 4 rounceys,[42] now none. Then 8 beasts, now 5. Then 30 swine, now
15. Then 100 sheep, and now likewise. And in the same [town] the same
Simon holds 6 freemen and a half, whom the same Brode had in
commendation only; 70 acres of land and 4 acres of meadow; then as now 1
plough and a half. Of these 6 freemen and a half the soke was in the
King's [manor of] Buckenham in the time of King Edward, and afterwards,
until William de Warenne had it. Then and always they were worth 3l.
10s.

After this there were added to this land 9 freemen and a half, 1
carucate of land, 54 acres, this is in demesne; then as now 9 bordiers
and 8 acres of meadow; then as now 6 ploughs, and 2 half mills. The
whole of this is [reckoned] for one manor of Lewes and is worth 3l. 11s.
Of four and a half of the 9 freemen the soke and commendation was in the
King's [manor of] Buckenham in the time of King Edward, and afterwards,
until William de Warenne had it, and the whole was delivered in the time
of Earl Ralph. The whole is 1 league in length and a half in breadth,
and [pays] 15d. of geld.

[Footnote 41: Cotters.]

[Footnote 42: Horses.]


9. THE MANOR OF HALESOWEN, CO. WORCESTER [_Domesday Book, I_, 176],
1086.

Earl Roger holds of the King one manor, Halesowen. There are 10 hides
there. On the demesne there are 4 ploughs and 36 villeins and 18
bordiers, 4 "radmans" and a church with 2 priests. Among them all they
have 41-1/2 ploughs. There are there 8 serfs and 2 bondwomen. Of this
land Roger Venator holds of the Earl one hide and a half, and there he
has one plough and 6 villeins, and 5 bordiers with 5 ploughs. It is
worth 25s. In the time of King Edward this manor was worth 24l. Now 15l.
Olwin held and had in Droitwich a saltpan worth 4s. and in Worcester a
house worth 12d.

The same Earl holds Salwarpe, and Urso of him. Elwin Cilt held it. There
are 5 hides there. On the demesne there is one plough and 6 villeins,
and 5 bordiers with 7 ploughs. There are there 3 serfs and 3 bondwomen
and a mill worth 10s. and 5 saltpans worth 60s. Half a league of wood
and a park there. In the time of King Edward it was worth 100s. Now 6l.
There can be two ploughs more there.


10. THE MANOR OF HAVERING, CO. ESSEX [_Domesday Book, II_, 2 _b_], 1086.

_Hundred of Bintree._--Harold held Havering in the time of King Edward
for one manor and for 10 hides. Then 41 villeins, now 40. Then as now 41
bordiers and 6 serfs and 2 ploughs on the demesne. Then 41 ploughs among
the men, now 40. Wood for 500 swine, 100 acres of meadow; now one mill,
two rounceys and 10 beasts and 160 swine and 269 sheep. To this manor
belonged 4 freemen with 4 hides in the time of King Edward, rendering
custom. Now Robert son of Corbutio holds 3 hides, and Hugh de Monte
Forti the fourth hide, and they have not rendered custom since they have
had them. And further the same Robert holds 4 hides and a half which one
freeman held at this manor in the time of King Edward; the freeman held
also a soke of 30 acres, rendering custom; and now John son of Galeram
holds it. And this manor in the time of King Edward was worth 36l., now
40l. And Peter the sheriff received therefrom 80l. of rent and 10l. of
gersom.[43] To this manor pertain 20 acres lying in Lochetun, which
Harold's reeve held in the time of King Edward; now the King's reeve
holds the same, and they are worth 40d.

[Footnote 43: _i.e._, Fine.]



Section II

THE FEUDAL STRUCTURE

   1. Frankalmoin, _temp._ Hen. II.--2. Knight Service, 1308--3. Grand
   Serjeanty, 1319--4. Petty Serjeanty, 1329--5. An action on the feudal
   incidents due from land held by petty serjeanty, 1239-40--6. Free
   socage, 1342--7. Commutation of a serjeanty for knight service,
   1254--8. Commutation of service for rent, 1269--9. Subinfeudation,
   1278--10. Licence for the widow of a tenant in chief to marry,
   1316--11. Marriage of a widow without licence, 1338--12. Alienation
   of land by a tenant in chief without licence, 1273--13. Wardship and
   marriage, 1179-80--14. Grant of an heir's marriage, 1320--15.
   Wardship, 1337--16. Collection of a carucage, 1198--17. An
   acquittance of the collectors of scutage of a sum of 10l. levied by
   them and repaid, 1319--18. Payment of fines in lieu of knight
   service, 1303--19. The assessment of a tallage, 1314--20. A writ
   _Precipe_, _c._ 1200--21. Articles of enquiry touching rights and
   liberties and the state of the realm, 1274--- 22. Wreck of sea, 1337.


The general characteristics of feudalism as a system by which the
administrative, legislative and judicial functions of the state had
their basis in the tenure of land, are well known. In the following
documents an attempt has been made to illustrate the development of
English feudalism under the direction of a strong central government,
which succeeded in controlling the centrifugal force of feudal
institutions and in establishing a national administration dependent on
the crown and antagonistic to local franchise. By the end of the
thirteenth century the crown was firmly entrenched behind well developed
courts of permanent officials, having at the same time retained its
control of local affairs by preventing the office of sheriff from
becoming hereditary; in the sphere of justice, the central courts of
King's Bench and Common Pleas, supplemented by the itinerant Justices
of Assize and by the energy of the Chancellor in devising new remedies
and new legal actions, were slowly but surely undermining the manorial
justice of the greater tenants, a process well understood by the framers
of _Magna Carta_; while the creation of Parliament brought into being an
institution destined to rival and ultimately to supersede the exclusive
claims of the lords, the feudal council, to advise and control the
crown. While therefore the worst tendencies of feudalism were
neutralised, the sovereign's hold on the land was tightened, and feudal
obligations were reduced to a rigid system which persisted until the
Civil War of the seventeenth century. The administration of this branch
of royal rights, facilitated by the existence of Domesday Book and the
rapid development of the Exchequer, was locally in the hands of the
sheriffs for a century and a half after the Conquest; but the growth of
business, due to the increase of population and the subdivision of the
original knights' fees, necessitated the creation of a separate
official. Already in the time of Richard I., there appears "the keeper
of the king's escheats," and early in the reign of Henry III. the
sheriffs are relieved by the two escheators, one on each side of the
Trent, who answer directly at the Exchequer, although it is not until
the year 17 Edward II. (1323-4) that their accounts are transferred from
the Pipe Roll to a separate enrolment.

The office of escheator passed through a period of experimental
fluctuation during the first half of the fourteenth century; Edward I.
in 1275 temporarily abolished the original two escheatries, dividing the
realm into three stewardships with the sheriffs as escheators in each
county; Edward II. in 1323 divided the country into ten escheatries,[44]
a plan readopted by Edward III. in 1340; between 1332 and 1340 there
were five escheators, between 1341 and 1357 the office was held by the
sheriffs, though separate patents were issued, while from 1357 onwards
the office suffered no change of importance until the Tudor period, when
the Court of Wards was established (32 Henry VIII.) and the feodary
appears. The functions of the escheator were to take into the king's
hand and administer the lands of all tenants in chief and of others
whose lands by death, escheat or forfeiture, fell to the crown, to
deliver seisin to the heirs, after taking security for the payment of
relief, to make partitions of lands among heiresses, to assign dowers to
the widows of tenants, and in general to watch over the interests of the
crown in all matters of feudal obligation.

The documents given below show the machinery in operation. Instances are
given of the different tenures[45] (Nos. 1 to 6), while the uncertainty
prevailing in the twelfth century as to the incidents due from land held
by serjeanty is illustrated in No. 5. The gradual substitution of a
money economy for a feudal economy, which finds expression in scutage
(No. 17) and otherwise (No. 18), encouraged an elasticity of tenure
which made a change from serjeanty to knight service (No. 7) and from
personal service to a rent (No. 8) convenient equally to lord and
tenant. The degree to which subinfeudation had commonly proceeded in the
thirteenth century is shown in No. 9, and the burden of the feudal
incidents is exemplified in Nos. 10 to 15. The ordinary revenues of the
Crown from feudal incidents and aids, rents, the profits of justice, and
escheats, were never sufficient to meet emergencies, just as the feudal
army was inadequate for a protracted campaign, and hence the Crown was
forced to resort on the one hand to a universal land-tax (No. 16) or a
limited exaction from the crown demesnes (No. 19), and on the other to a
tax on the feudal unit, the knight's fee (No. 17); the provisions for
the collection of a carucage illustrate the royal determination to exact
the uttermost farthing, while the assessment of a scutage was conducted
on the modern principle of extracting the money first and settling the
liability afterwards. No. 20 is a rare surviving instance of an original
writ _Precipe_ issued before _Magna Carta_, and shows precisely the
method of the royal procedure in attracting legal causes to the King's
jurisdiction out of the hands of the lord. The section concludes with
the important articles of enquiry initiated by Edward I., which led to
the compilation of the Hundred Rolls and the proceedings _quo warranto_,
and also set out in detail the King's conception of his sovereignty and
of the royal origin of all feudal franchises and liberties (No. 21);
while the last document (No. 22) furnishes a curious instance of one of
the minor royal rights.


AUTHORITIES

   The principal modern writers dealing with the subject of this section
   are:--Pollock & Maitland, _History of English Law_; Maitland,
   _Lectures on Constitutional History_; Stubbs, _Constitutional
   History_; Hazlitt, _Tenures of land and customs of manors_; Round,
   _Feudal England_; Round, _The King's Serjeants and Officers of
   State_; Baldwin, _Scutage and Knight Service in England_; McKechnie,
   _Magna Carta_; Freeman, _Norman Conquest_; Hatschek, _Englische
   Verfassungsgeschichte_; Digby, _History of the Law of Real Property_.

   _Documentary authorities_:--The principal original sources are, _The
   Red Book of the Exchequer_ (Hall, Rolls Series); _The Hundred Rolls_
   (Record Commission), _Placita de quo Warranto_ (Record Commission);
   _Placitorum Abbreviatio_ (Record Commission); _Testa de Nevill_
   (Record Commission),[46] _Inquisitions Post Mortem_ (Record Office
   Calendars), _Feudal Aids_ (Record Office Calendars).

[Footnote 44: Besides these ten, the palatinate county of Chester had
its own escheator, and the Mayor of London exercised the office in
London. Minor escheatries were carved out from time to time.]

[Footnote 45: Unfree tenure is illustrated below in section III., The
Manor.]

[Footnote 46: A new edition is in course of preparation.]


1. FRANKALMOIN [_Ancient Deeds_, B. 4249]. _temp._ Henry II.

To all sons of Holy Mother Church, present and to come, Roger son of
Elyas of Helpstone, greeting. Know ye that I have given and granted and
by my present charter confirmed to God and the church of St. Michael of
Stamford and the nuns serving God there, for the souls of my father and
my mother and for the salvation of my soul and the souls of my ancestors
and successors, in free and pure and perpetual alms, 2 acres of land,
less 1 rood, in the fields of Helpstone, to wit, 3 roods of land on
Peselond between the land of Payn the knight and between the land of
Robert Blund, and 1/2 acre between the land of William Peri and between
the land of William son of Ede, and 2 roods between the land of Sir
Roger de Torpel, lying on both sides. I have given, moreover, to God
and the church of St. Michael and the nuns serving God there, in free
and pure and perpetual alms 1/2d. of rent which John son of Richard of
Barnack used to render to me on the day of St. Peter's Chains[47] for a
house and for a rood of land in Helpstone. And the aforesaid land and
1/2d. of rent I, Roger, and my heirs will warrant to the aforesaid nuns
against all men and against all women. Witnesses:--Payn of Helpstone,
Roger his son, Geoffrey of Lohoum, Geoffrey of Norbury, Walter of
Helpstone, Robert son of Simon, Geoffrey son of John, Geoffrey son of
Herlewin, Walter of Tickencote, Richard Pec.

[Footnote 47: August 1.]


2. KNIGHT SERVICE [_Inquisitions post mortem, Edward II,_ 2, 19], 1308.

_Somerset._--Inquisition made before the escheator of the lord the King
at Somerton on 29 January in the first year of the reign of King Edward
[II], of the lands and tenements that were of Hugh Poyntz in the county
of Somerset on the day on which he died, how much, to wit, he held of
the lord the King in chief and how much of others and by what service,
and how much those lands and tenements are worth yearly in all issues,
and who is his next heir and of what age, by the oath of Matthew de
Esse[48] ... Who say by their oath that the aforesaid Hugh Poyntz held
in his demesne as of fee in the county aforesaid on the day on which he
died the manor of Curry Mallet, with the appurtenances, of the lord the
King in chief for a moiety of the barony of Curry Mallet by the service
of one knight's fee; in which manor is a capital messuage which is worth
4s. a year with the fruit and herbage of the garden; and there are there
280 acres of arable land which are worth 4l. 13s. 4d. a year at 4d. an
acre; and there are there 60 acres of meadow which are worth 4l. 10s. a
year at 18d. an acre; and there is there a park the pasture whereof is
worth 6s. 8d. a year and not more owing to the sustenance of deer; and
the pleas and perquisites of the court there are worth 4s. a year; And
there are there 12 free tenants in fee, who render yearly at the feasts
of Michaelmas and Easter by equal portions 74s. 8d. for all service; and
there are there 16 customary tenants, each of whom holds 1/2 virgate of
land in villeinage, rendering yearly at the said terms by equal
portions 4s., and the works of each are worth from the feast of the
Nativity of St. John the Baptist[49] to the feast of Michaelmas 2s. a
year; and there are there 28 customary tenants, each of whom holds 1
fardel[50] of land in villeinage, rendering yearly at the said terms by
equal portions 2s., and the works of each for the same time are worth
12d. Sum of the extent:--22l. 12s. 8d.

Further, the aforesaid jurors say that Nicholas Poyntz, son of the
aforesaid Hugh Poyntz, is next heir of the same Hugh and of the age of
30 years and more. In witness whereof the same jurors have set their
seals to this inquisition.

       *       *       *       *       *

The aforesaid Hugh de Poyntz held no other lands or tenements in my
bailiwick on the day on which he died, except the lands and tenements in
these inquisitions.[51]

[Footnote 48: And eleven others named.]

[Footnote 49: June 24.]

[Footnote 50: A quarter of a virgate.]

[Footnote 51: A second inquisition is appended.]


3. GRAND SERJEANTY [_Inquisitions ad quod damnum_, 135, 10], 1319.

_Norfolk._--Inquisition made at Bishop's Lynn before the escheator of
the lord the King on 30 March in the 12th year of the reign of King
Edward, son of King Edward, by Robert de Causton.[52] ... Which jurors
say upon their oath that it is not to the damage or prejudice of the
lord the King or of others if the lord the King grant to Thomas de
Hauvill that he may grant to the venerable father John, bishop of
Norwich, a custom called lastage[53] which he has and receives in the
port of Bishop's Lynn in the county of Norfolk, to receive and hold to
him and his successors, bishops of that place, for ever. Asked of whom
that custom is holden in chief, they say, Of the lord the King in chief.
Asked also by what service, they say that Thomas de Hauvill holds the
manors of Dunton and Rainham and the custom called lastage in the ports
of Bishop's Lynn and Great Yarmouth, in the county aforesaid, and
Boston, in the county of Lincoln, by grand serjeanty, to wit, by the
service of keeping a falcon of the lord the King yearly.[54] Asked how
much that custom is worth yearly in the port of Lynn, they say that the
aforesaid custom in the aforesaid port of Lynn is worth 16s. according
to the true value in all issues yearly. In witness whereof the aforesaid
jurors have set their seals to this inquisition at Lynn the day and year
abovesaid.

[Footnote 52: And eleven others named.]

[Footnote 53: Here a toll of ships' ladings.]

[Footnote 54: The service of grand serjeanty was usually more onerous.]


4. PETTY SERJEANTY [_Fine Roll, 3 Edward III, m. 5_], 1329.

The King to his beloved and faithful, Simon de Bereford, his escheator
on this side Trent, greeting. Because we have learned by an inquisition
which we caused to be made by you that Nicholaa, who was the wife of
Nicholas de Mortesthorp, deceased (_defuncta_), held on the day on which
she died the manor of Kingston Russell with the appurtenances for the
term of her life of the gift of William Russel, and that that manor is
held of us in chief by the service of counting our chessmen (_narrandi
familiam scaccarii nostri_) in our chamber, and of putting them in a box
when we have finished our game; and that the aforesaid Nicholaa held on
the day aforesaid the manor of Allington with the appurtenances for the
term of her life of Theobald Russel by knight service; and that the
aforesaid Theobald, son of the aforesaid William, is William's next heir
of the manors aforesaid and of full age: We have taken Theobald's homage
for the manor which is thus held of us and have given it back to him.
And therefore we command you, that after you have taken security from
the aforesaid Theobald for rendering to us a reasonable relief at our
Exchequer, you cause the same Theobald to have full seisin of the manor
aforesaid with the appurtenances and of the other lands and tenements
which the same Nicholaa so held for the term of her life of the
inheritance aforesaid in your bailiwick on the day on which she died,
and which on account of her death have been taken into our hand, saving
the right of every man. Witness the King at Gloucester,

  26 September.         By writ of privy seal.


5. AN ACTION ON THE FEUDAL INCIDENTS DUE FROM LANDS HELD BY PETTY
SERJEANTY [_Bracton's Note-Book, III, 290. No. 1280_], 1239-40.

Jollan de Nevill was summoned to shew wherefore without licence of the
lord the King he gave in marriage William, son and heir of Randolf son
of Robert, who ought to be in the wardship of the lord the King because
Randolf held his land of the King by the service of serjeanty, etc. And
Jollan comes and says that the aforesaid William held no such land of
the lord the King in chief save by the following service, to wit, that
he ought to be verger (_portare unam uirgam_) before the justices in
eyre at Lincoln, wherefore it seems to him that no wardship pertains
thereof to the lord the King, and he says that at another time he was
impleaded by Earl Richard[55] touching that wardship on account of
certain land which the same Randolf held of the same Earl, and in such
wise that an inquisition was made whereby it was proved that the same
Earl had no right in that wardship, and also he says that another
inquisition was made between the lord the King and him, Jollan, whereby
it was proved that the wardship pertained to Jollan, and the inquisition
was delivered to the Chancellor, and he puts himself on that
inquisition, and thereof he says that after the wardship remained to him
by that inquisition he sold the wardship and marriage forthwith to the
Chancellor at Lincoln for 20 marks. And therefore let the inquisition be
viewed etc.[56]

[Footnote 55: Earl of Cornwall, the king's brother.]

[Footnote 56: For the uncertainty prevailing as to the burdens of this
tenure in the thirteenth century, _cf._ Bracton, _f._ 35_b_. "Since such
services are not done for the king's army or the defence of the country,
no marriage or wardship is due therefrom to the chief lord, any more
than from socage." But the gloss of this dictum quotes an instance of a
justice upholding the claim of a chief lord to the wardship and marriage
of the heir of a tenant by petty serjeanty.]


6. FREE SOCAGE [_Fine Roll, 16 Edward III, m. 15_], 1342.

The King to his beloved and trusty, Richard de Monte Caniso, his
escheator in the counties of Essex, Hertford and Middlesex, greeting.
Because we have learned by an inquisition which we caused to be made by
you that a tenement with the appurtenances in the parish of St. Clement
Danes without the bar of the New Temple, London, which was of Thomas de
Crauford, barber, deceased, and which is worth by the year in all issues
6s. 8d. according to the true value of the same, is holden of us in
chief in free socage by the service of 18d. a year to be rendered
therefrom to us at our Exchequer for all services, and that the wardship
of the land and heir of the same Thomas does not pertain to us, because
the wardship of such tenements holden of us in form aforesaid ought to
pertain to the next friends of the same heirs to whom the aforesaid
tenements cannot come by hereditary right, and that John, son of the
said Thomas, is next heir of the same Thomas and of the age of fourteen
years: We have taken the fealty of the same John due to us from the
tenement aforesaid. And therefore we command you that after you have
received from the aforesaid John security for rendering to us his
reasonable relief at our Exchequer, you deliver to the same John the
tenement aforesaid with the appurtenances, which was taken into our hand
by reason of the death of the aforesaid Thomas; saving the right of any
man. Witness the King at Woodstock, 18 June.


7. COMMUTATION OF A SERJEANTY FOR KNIGHT SERVICE [_Inquisitions ad quod
damnum_, 1, 30], 1254.

This is the inquisition made by the oath of James de Northon[57] ... in
the presence of the keepers of the pleas of the crown,[58] what damage
it would be to the lord the King to grant to his beloved and trusty Adam
de Gurdun that for the service which his father used to do to the same
lord the King, to wit, of finding a serjeant for the lord the King for
40 days in his army and expedition, for the land which the same Adam and
his mother hold of the lord the King by serjeanty in Tisted and Selborne
in the county of Southampton, hereafter he do to the lord the King the
service of half a knight's fee: Who say that it is not to the damage of
the lord the King to grant to Adam de Gurdun that for the service which
his father used to do to the lord the King ... he do hereafter the
service of half a knight's fee. In witness whereof they have set their
seals to this inquisition.

[Footnote 57: And eleven others named.]

[Footnote 58: The coroners.]


8. COMMUTATION OF SERVICE FOR RENT [_Inquisitions ad quod damnum_, 2,
40], 1269.

Inquisition made before the sheriff on All Souls Day[59] in the 53rd
year of the reign of King Henry son of King John, what and what sort of
customs and services are due to the lord the King from two virgates of
land with the appurtenances which Adam de Ardern holds of the aforesaid
lord the King in Colverdon and Walesworth, within the manor of the
aforesaid lord the King of Barton without Gloucester, and how much those
customs and services are worth yearly in money, if they were converted
into money, and whether it would be to the damage of the aforesaid lord
the King or to the injury of the manor aforesaid, if the lord the King
should grant to the aforesaid Adam that for the customs and services
aforesaid he should render to the aforesaid lord the King the value of
the same yearly in money; and if it should be to the damage of the lord
the King aforesaid or to the injury of the same manor, to what damage
and what injury; by the oath of the below written persons, to wit,
Philip de Hatherle[60] ... Who say upon their oath that the aforesaid
Adam holds of the aforesaid lord the King within the manor aforesaid in
Colverdon a virgate of land with the appurtenances and renders 10s. a
year to the lord the King, and another virgate of land with the
appurtenances in Walesworth and renders 20s. to the same lord the King,
and for the aforesaid two virgates of land he owes suit to the court of
the lord the King at the Barton aforesaid, and it is worth 2s. a year,
and he shall carry writs within the county and shall have no answering
of the aforesaid writs, and it is worth 2s. a year, and he ought to be
tallaged for the two virgates of land aforesaid, when tallage is
imposed, at the will of the lord the King. And if the aforesaid lord the
King should grant to the aforesaid Adam to hold the aforesaid land for
the aforesaid service,[61] it would not be to the damage of the lord the
King nor to the injury of the manor aforesaid.

[Footnote 59: November 2.]

[Footnote 60: And twelve others named.]

[Footnote 61: _i.e._, for the money-payments specified above.]


9. SUBINFEUDATION [_Rotuli Hundredorum, II_, 350], 1278

_Township of Thornborough._--The abbot of Biddlesdon holds 6 hides of
land and a virgate in Thornborough, to wit, of John de Hastings one hide
of land, and John himself holds of Sir John son of Alan, and Sir John
himself holds of the lord the King in chief.

Again, the said abbot holds a half hide of land and a virgate of Alice
daughter of Robert de Hastings, and she holds of Sir John son of Alan,
and he holds of the King in chief, and the said abbot renders to the
said Alice 30s. a year.

Again, the same abbot holds of Hugh de Dunster 2-1/2 hides of land and a
virgate, and renders for the said land to the nuns of St. Margaret of
Ivinghoe 40s. a year, and maintains the chapel of Butlecote for the
aforesaid land. And Hugh held of John de Bello Campo a hide and a
virgate of land, rendering to John de Bello Campo 4d. a year, and John
himself holds of Sir John son of Alan, and he holds of the lord the King
in chief.

Again the same abbot holds of the gift of Roger Foliot a half hide and a
virgate, and Roger himself held of Reynold de Fraxino, and Reynold held
of John son of Alan, and he of the lord the King in chief.

Again, the same abbot holds of the gift of William de Fraxino and his
ancestors a hide of land, and they held of John son of Alan, and he of
the lord the King in chief.

And it is to be known that all the aforesaid land used to render foreign
service,[62] except the land which the said abbot has of the gift of
John de Hastings and Alice daughter of Robert de Hastings, but John son
of Alan and his heirs will acquit the said abbot towards the lord the
King and all other men, to wit, of the ward of Northampton, of scutage,
of a reasonable aid to make the king's son a knight and to marry his
daughter, for ever, and of all services pertaining to them.[63]

[Footnote 62: _i.e._, service due to the King, a permanent burden upon
the land. _See_ Bracton, _f._ 36. "Item sunt quedam servitia que
dicuntur forinseca ... quia pertinent ad dominum regem ... et ideo
forinsecum did potest quia fit et capitur foris sive extra servitium
quod fit domino capitali."]

[Footnote 63: The process of subinfeudation was brought to an end by the
Statute of _Quia Emptores_, 1290. "Our lord the king ... has ... enacted
that henceforth it be lawful for any freeman to sell his land or
tenement or any part thereof at his pleasure, so always that he who is
enfeoffed thereof hold that land or tenement of the same chief lord, and
by the same services and customs, whereby the enfeoffor formerly held
them."]


10. LICENCE FOR THE WIDOW OF A TENANT IN CHIEF TO MARRY [_Fine Roll, 10
Edward II, m. 19_], 1316.

The King to all to whom etc. greeting. Know ye that by a fine of 100s.
which our beloved John de la Haye has made with us for Joan, who was the
wife of Simon Darches, deceased, who held of us in chief as of the
honour of Wallingford, we have given licence to the same Joan that she
may marry whomsoever she will, provided that he be in our allegiance.
In witness whereof etc. Witness the King at Westminster, 11 July.


11. MARRIAGE OF A WIDOW WITHOUT LICENCE [_Fine Roll, 12 Edward III, m.
26_], 1338.

The King to his beloved and trusty, William Trussel, his escheator on
this side Trent, greeting. Whereas Millicent, who was the wife of Hugh
de Plescy, deceased, who held of us in chief, who (_que_) lately in our
Chancery took a corporal oath that she would not marry without our
licence, has now married Richard de Stonley without having obtained our
licence hereon: We, refusing to pass over such a contempt unpunished,
and wishing to take measures for our indemnity in this behalf, command
you that without delay you take into our hand all the lands and
tenements which the aforesaid Richard and Millicent hold in Millicent's
dower of the inheritance of the aforesaid Hugh in your bailiwick; so
that you answer to us at our Exchequer for the issues forthcoming
thence, until we deem fit to order otherwise thereon. Witness the King
at the Tower of London, 6 May. By the King.


12. ALIENATION OF LAND BY A TENANT IN CHIEF WITHOUT LICENCE [_Fine Roll,
1 Edward I, m. 7_], 1273.

Order is made to the sheriff of Hereford that without delay he take into
the King's hand the manor of Dilwyn, which Edmund, our[64] brother,
holds of the King in chief, and which he has now alienated to John
Giffard without the King's licence; and that he keep it safely until the
King make other order thereon, so that he answer to the King at the
King's Exchequer for the issues arising therefrom. Given as above [at
St. Martin le Grand, London, 5 October]. By the King's council.

[Footnote 64: i.e., the King's brother. The enrolling clerk confuses the
first person of the original writ with the third person of the enrolment
formula.]


13. WARDSHIP AND MARRIAGE [_Pipe Roll, 26 Henry II, Rot. 5, m. 2d._],
1179-80.

Otto de Tilli renders account of 400l. to have the wardship of the
land of his grandson; and let his daughter be given [in marriage] at
the King's will. In the treasury are 100l. And he owes 300l.

Adam son of Norman and William son of Hugh de Leelai render account of
200 marks for marrying the daughter of Adam with the son of William,
with the King's good will. In the treasury are 50 marks. And they owe
100l.


14. GRANT OF AN HEIR'S MARRIAGE [_Fine Roll, 13 Edward II, m. 3_], 1320.

The King to all to whom etc., greeting. Know ye that by a fine of 6l.
which our beloved clerk, Adam de Lymbergh, has made with us, we have
granted to him the marriage of John, son and heir of Joan de Chodewell,
deceased, late one of the sisters and heirs of Philip le Brode,
deceased, who held of us in chief, which John is under age and in our
wardship; to hold without disparagement.[65] In witness whereof etc.
Witness the King at Odiham, 26 March. By the council.

And command is given to Richard de Rodeney, the King's escheator on this
side Trent, that he deliver to the same Adam the body of the heir
aforesaid, to be married in the form aforesaid. Witness as above.

[Footnote 65: _i.e.,_ The heir is not to be married below his rank. _cf.
Magna Carta, 6._ "Heirs shall be married without disparagement, so that
before a marriage be contracted, the near kindred of the heir shall be
informed thereof."]


15. WARDSHIP [_Fine Roll, 11 Edward III, m. 18_], 1337.

The King to his beloved and trusty, William Trussel, his escheator on
this side Trent, greeting. We command you, straitly enjoining, that
forthwith, on view of these presents, you cause the body of the heir of
Roger de Huntyngfeld, deceased, who held of us in chief, wheresoever and
in whosesoever hands it be found in your bailiwick, to be seized into
our hand and to be sent to us without delay, wheresoever we shall be in
England, to be delivered to us or to him whom we shall depute as
guardian of the said heir: and that you in no wise neglect this, as you
will save yourself harmless against us. Witness the King at the Tower of
London, 2 September.

By letter of the secret seal.


16. THE COLLECTION OF A CARUCAGE [_Roger of Hoveden, Rolls Series_, iv.
46], 1198.

In the same year Richard, King of England, took an aid of 5s. from
every carucate of land or hide, of the whole of England, for the
collection whereof the same King sent throughout every county of England
a clerk and a knight, who, together with the sheriff of the county to
which they were sent, and with lawful knights elected hereto, after
taking oath faithfully to execute the King's business, summoned before
them the stewards of the barons of that county and from every town the
lord or bailiff of that town and the reeve with four lawful men of the
town, whether freemen or unfree (_rusticis_), and two of the more lawful
knights of the hundred, who swore that they would faithfully and without
deceit say how many ploughlands (_carucarum wannagia_) there were in
every town, to wit, how many in demesne, how many in villeinage, how
many in alms granted to men of religion, which the grantors or their
heirs are bound to warrant or acquit, or wherefrom men of religion ought
to do service; and by command of the King they put on each ploughland
first 2s. and afterwards 3s.; and all these things were reduced to
writing; and the clerk had thereof one roll, and the knight a second
roll, the sheriff a third roll, the steward of the barons a fourth roll
of his lord's land. This money was received by the hands of two lawful
knights of each hundred and by the hand of the bailiff of the hundred;
and they answered therefor to the sheriff, and the sheriff answered
therefor by the aforesaid rolls at the Exchequer before the bishops,
abbots and barons appointed hereto. And for the punishment of any jurors
who should conceal aught in this business contrary to their oath, it was
decreed that any unfree man convicted of perjury should give to his lord
his best plough-ox, and moreover should answer from his own property, to
the use of the lord the King, for as much money as he should be declared
to have concealed by his perjury; and if a freeman should be convicted,
he should be at the King's mercy, and moreover should refund from his
own property, to the use of the lord the King, as much as should be
concealed by him, like the unfree man. It was also decreed that every
baron together with the sheriff should make distraints upon his men; and
if through default of the barons distraints were not made, that which
should remain to be rendered by their men should be taken from the
demesne of the barons, and the barons themselves should have recourse to
their men for the same. And the free fees of parish churches were
excepted from this tallage. And all escheats of barons, which were in
the hand of the lord the King, paid their share. Serjeanties, however,
of the lord the King, which were not of knights' fees, were excepted;
nevertheless a list was made of them and of the number of carucates of
land and the value of the lands and the names of the serjeants, and all
those serjeants were summoned to be at London on the octave of the Close
of Pentecost, to hear and execute the command of the lord the King. And
those who were elected and appointed to execute this business of the
King decreed, by the valuation of lawful men, 100 acres of land to each
ploughland.


17. AN ACQUITTANCE OF THE COLLECTORS OF SCUTAGE OF A SUM OF 10L. LEVIED
BY THEM AND REPAID [_Chancery Miscellanea, 1, 18, 9_], 1319.

To all Christ's faithful to whom the present letters shall come, John de
Twynem, receiver of the money of the lord John of Brittany, earl of
Richmond, in the barony of Hastings, greeting in the Lord. Know ye that,
whereas John Fillol and William de Northo were appointed[66] to collect
and levy in the counties of Surrey and Sussex the scutage of the lord
the King of the armies of Scotland of the twenty-eighth, thirty-first
and thirty-fourth years of the reign of King Edward, father of King
Edward that now is, and afterwards by command of the lord the King were
appointed[67] to pay to the said lord John of Brittany, earl of
Richmond, the scutage of the tenants of the barony aforesaid of the
aforesaid thirty-first and thirty-fourth years, I have received of the
aforesaid John Fillol and William de Northo by the hands of the said
John to the use of the said lord John of Brittany, earl of Richmond,
10l. for the scutage of five knights' fees in Wartling, Cowden and
Socknersh, of the aforesaid thirty-fourth year; of which 10l. I will
acquit the aforesaid John and William, their heirs and executors, and
save them harmless, against the said earl and others whomsoever. In
witness whereof I have set my seal to these presents. Given at Lympne,
12 September, at the beginning of the thirteenth year of the reign of
the King abovesaid.[68]

[Footnote 66: _Fine Roll, 8 Edward II., m._ 19.]

[Footnote 67: _Scutage Roll, 8-11 Edward II., mm._ 2. l.]

[Footnote 68: Scutage was imposed on all tenants of knights' fees, but
might be reclaimed by the lord if he did the service due.]


18. PAYMENT OF FINES IN LIEU OF KNIGHT SERVICE [_Patent Roll, 31 Edward
I, m. 12d_], 1303.

The King to the sheriff of York, greeting. Though we lately commanded
you that you should cause to be summoned archbishops, bishops, abbots,
priors and other ecclesiastical persons, and also widows and other women
of your bailiwick, who hold of us in chief by knight service or by
serjeanty, or hold of the guardianships of archbishoprics and bishoprics
or other guardianships or wardships in our hand, that they should have
at our side on the feast of Whitsunday next coming at Berwick-upon-Tweed
their whole service due to us, well furnished with horses and arms, and
ready to march with us and with others our faithful against the Scots,
our enemies; wishing, however, on this occasion graciously to spare the
labours of the same prelates, religious persons, women and others, who
are unskilled in or even unfit for arms, we command you, straitly
enjoining, that forthwith on sight of these presents, in full
county-court and none the less in market towns and elsewhere throughout
the whole of your bailiwick where you shall deem most expedient, you
cause it to be publicly proclaimed that the same prelates, religious
persons, women and others insufficient or unfit for arms, who owe us
their service and are willing to make fine with us for the same service,
come before our treasurer and barons of the Exchequer on the morrow of
the Ascension of the Lord next coming, or sooner, if they can, at York,
or then send some one thither on their behalf, to make fine with us for
their service aforesaid, and to pay the same fine to us on the same
morrow, to wit, 20l. for a knight's fee and otherwise in proportion to
their knight service or serjeanty due to us in this behalf; or else that
they be at our side on the aforesaid feast of Whitsunday with horses and
arms, and the whole of their service, as they are bound; and that you
have this writ at our said Exchequer on the morrow abovesaid. Witness
the King at Laneham, 16 April.


19. THE ASSESSMENT OF A TALLAGE [_Patent Roll, 8 Edward II_, p. 1, _m._
14, _schedule_], 1314.

The King to his beloved and faithful, Hervey de Stanton, Henry le Scrop,
John de Merkingfeld and Ralph de Stokes, greeting. Whereas in the sixth
year of our reign we caused our cities, boroughs and demesnes throughout
England to be tallaged, and certain our lieges to be appointed in the
counties of our realm to assess our tallage in our cities, boroughs and
demesnes, separately by heads or in common, as they should deem the more
expedient for our advantage, and that tallage for certain causes yet
remains to be assessed in our city of London: We appoint you to assess
that tallage in the city aforesaid and the suburb of the same separately
by heads or in common, as you shall deem the more expedient for our
advantage. And therefore we command you that without delay you go to the
city aforesaid and the suburb of the same to assess the said tallage
according to the means of the tenants of the same city and suburb, to
wit, from their moveables a fifteenth and from their rents a tenth, so
that that tallage be assessed as soon as possible, and the rich be not
spared nor the poor burdened overmuch in this behalf; and that after
that tallage be assessed in the form aforesaid, you deliver estreats
thereof under your seals without delay to our sheriffs of London
separately for that tallage to be levied without delay and paid to us at
our Exchequer; and that you apply such diligence upon the expedition of
the premises that we may deservedly commend you thereupon, in no wise
omitting to appear at the Exchequer aforesaid as soon as you
conveniently can to certify our treasurer and barons of the Exchequer
aforesaid of that which you shall have done in the premises; for we have
commanded our sheriffs of the city aforesaid that when they be
forewarned by you, three or two of you, they cause to come before you,
three or two of you, all those of the city and suburb aforesaid whom
they shall deem necessary for the said tallage, and that they be aiding
and attending to you hereon, as you shall enjoin upon them on our
behalf. In witness whereof, etc. Witness the King at Spalding, 24
October, in the eighth year.


20. A WRIT _Precipe_ [_Chancery Files_], _c._ 1200.

G. Fitz Peter,[69] earl of Essex, to the sheriff of York, greeting.
Command (_precipe_) Ralph de Nevill justly and without delay to render
to Robert, son of Richard de Haverford, Fivelay and Moseton and Sloxton
with the appurtenances which the same Robert claims to be his right and
inheritance, and whereof he complains that Ralph unjustly deforces him;
and if he refuse and Robert give us security to prosecute his claim,
summon the same Ralph by good summoners to be before us at Westminster
on the quinzaine of Michaelmas to show wherefore he does it not; and
have there the summoners and this writ. Witness H. Bard at Shoreham, 21
June.[70]


21. ARTICLES OF ENQUIRY TOUCHING RIGHTS AND LIBERTIES AND THE STATE OF
THE REALM, 2 EDWARD I.[71] [_Patent Roll, 2 Edward I., m. 6_], 1274.

How many and what demesne manors the King has in his hand in every
county, as well, to wit, of ancient demesnes of the crown, as of
escheats and purchases.

Also what manors used to be in the hands of Kings, the King's
predecessors, and who hold them now and by what warrant and from what
time, and by whom and in what manner they were alienated.

Also touching fees of the lord the King, and his tenants who now hold
them of him in chief, and how many fees each of them holds, and what
fees used to be holden of the King in chief and are now holden by a
mesne lord, and by what mesne, and from what time they have been
alienated, and how and by whom.

Also touching the lands of tenants of the ancient demesne of the crown,
as well free sokemen as bond, whether [holden] by bailiffs or by the
same tenants, and by what bailiffs and by what tenants, and by whom they
have been alienated, how and at what time.

In like manner let enquiry be made touching the farms of hundreds,
wapentakes and ridings, cities, boroughs and other rents whatsoever, and
from what time [they have been alienated].

Also how many hundreds, wapentakes and ridings are now in the hand of
the lord the King, and how many and what are in the hands of others, and
from what time and by what warrant, and how much each hundred is worth
yearly.

Touching ancient suits, customs, services and other things withdrawn
from the lord the King and his ancestors, who have withdrawn them and
from what time, and who have appropriated to themselves such suits,
customs and other things pertaining to the lord the King and accustomed,
and from what time and by what warrant.

Also what other persons claim from the King to have the return and
estreats of writs, and who hold pleas of replevin,[72] and who claim to
have wreck of sea,[73] by what warrant, and other royal liberties, as
gallows, assizes of bread and ale, and other things that pertain to the
crown, and from what time.

Also touching those who have liberties granted to them by Kings of
England and have used them otherwise than they ought to have done, how,
from what time, and in what manner.

Again, touching liberties granted which hinder common justice and
subvert royal power, and by whom they were granted, and from what time.

Further, who have newly appropriated to themselves free chaces or
warrens without warrant, and likewise who have had such chaces and
warrens from of old by grant of the King, and have exceeded the bounds
and metes thereof, and from what time.

Also what lords or their stewards or bailiffs whosoever or also the
ministers of the lord the King have not suffered execution of the
commands of the lord the King to be made, or also have contemned to do
them or in any wise hindered them from being done, from the time of the
constitutions made at Marlborough in the 52nd year of the reign of the
lord King Henry, father of the King that now is.

Again, touching all purprestures[74] whatsoever made upon the King or
the royal dignity, by whom they have been made, how, and from what time.

Touching knights' fees of every fee soever, and land or tenements given
or sold to religious or others to the prejudice of the King, and by
whom, and from what time.

Touching sheriffs taking gifts for consenting to conceal felonies done
in their bailiwicks, or who have been negligent in attaching such felons
by any favour, as well within liberties as without; and in like manner
touching clerks and other bailiffs of sheriffs, touching coroners and
their clerks and bailiffs whomsoever, who have so done in the time of
the lord King Henry after the battle of Evesham, and in the time of the
lord the King that now is.

Touching sheriffs and bailiffs whomsoever taking gifts for removing
recognitors from assizes and juries, and from what time.

Again, touching sheriffs and bailiffs whomsoever who have amerced for
default those who were summoned to inquisitions made by command of the
lord the King, when by the same summons sufficient persons came to make
such inquisitions, and how much and from whom they have taken for the
cause aforesaid, and at what time.

Again, touching sheriffs who have delivered to bailiffs, extortionate
and burdensome to the people beyond measure, hundreds, wapentakes or
ridings at high farms, that so they might raise their farms; and who
were those bailiffs and on whom such damages were inflicted, and at what
time.

Again, when sheriffs ought not to make their tourn save twice a year,
who have made their tourn more often in a year, and from what time.

Again, when fines for redisseisin or for purprestures made by land or
water, for hiding of treasure and for other such things, pertain to the
lord the King, and sheriffs ought to attach the same, who have taken
such fines, and from whom and how much.

Again, who by the power of their office have troubled any maliciously
and hereby extorted lands, rent or other payments, and from what time.

Who have received command of the lord the King to pay his debts and
have received from the creditors any portion for paying them the
residue, and nevertheless have caused the whole to be allowed them in
the Exchequer or elsewhere, and from what time.

Who have received the King's debts or part of his debts and have not
acquitted the debtors, as well in the time of the lord King Henry as in
the time of the lord the King that now is.

Who have summoned any to be made knights and have received bribes from
them to have respite, and how much and at what time. And if any great
men or others without the King's command have distrained any to take up
arms, and at what time.

Again, if any sheriffs or bailiffs of any liberty soever have not made
summons in due manner according to the form of the writ of the lord the
King, or have otherwise fraudulently or insufficiently executed the
royal commands through prayer, price or favour, and at what time.

Again, touching those who have had approvers[75] imprisoned and have
caused them to appeal[76] loyal and innocent persons for the sake of
gain, and sometimes have hindered them from appealing guilty persons,
and from what time.

Again, who have had felons imprisoned and permitted them for money to
depart and escape from prison free and unpunished, and who have extorted
money for dismissing prisoners by plevin,[77] when they have been
replevied, and from what time.

Again, who have received any gifts or bribes for exercising or not
exercising or executing their offices, or have executed the same or
exceeded the limits of the King's command otherwise than pertained to
their office, and at what time.

And let all these things be enquired of, as well in the case of
sheriffs, coroners, their clerks and bailiffs whomsoever, as in the case
of lords and bailiffs of liberties whatsoever.

Again, what sheriffs or keepers of castles or manors of the lord the
King, for any [works], or also what surveyors of such works wheresoever
made by the King's command, have accounted for a greater sum in the same
than they have reasonably spent and hereupon have procured false
allowances to be made to them. And likewise who have retained or moved
away to their own use stone, timber or other things bought or purveyed
for such works, and what and how much damage the lord the King has had
thence, and at what time.

Touching escheators and subescheators, during the lord the King's
seisin, doing waste or destruction in woods, parks, fishponds, warrens
within the wardships committed to them by the lord the King, how much,
and in the case of whom, and in what manner and at what time.

Again, touching the same, if by reason of such seisin they have unjustly
taken goods of deceased persons or of heirs into the hand of the lord
the King, until they were redeemed by the same, and what, and how much
they have so taken for such redemption and what they have retained
thereof to their own use, and at what time.

Again, touching the same, who have taken gifts from any for executing or
not executing their office, how much and from whom and at what time.

Again, touching the same, who have insufficiently extended[78] the lands
of any man for favour to him or another to whom the wardship of those
lands should be given, sold or granted, to the deception of the lord the
King, and where and in what manner, and if they have taken anything
therefor, and how much, and at what time.[79]

[Footnote 69: Geoffrey Fitz Peter, justiciar of England, 1198-1213.]

[Footnote 70: It was to writs of this nature that the barons objected.
_Cf. Magna Carta_, 34. "The writ called _Precipe_ shall not hereafter be
issued to any one touching any tenement, whereby a freeman may lose his
court." It illustrates the method by which the King stole from the
barons the administration of justice.]

[Footnote 71: Printed in Foedera, I., ii., 517.]

[Footnote 72: The recovery of goods equivalent in value to goods
wrongfully seized by way of distraint.]

[Footnote 73: For a curious instance of this liberty, _see_ No. 22.]

[Footnote 74: Encroachments.]

[Footnote 75: A criminal who turns King's evidence.]

[Footnote 76: To bring an action for treason or felony.]

[Footnote 77: Surety or pledge.]

[Footnote 78: Surveyed.]

[Footnote 79: The results of this enquiry were embodied in the Hundred
Rolls and served as a basis for the _Placita de quo warranto_; these
records are as important for the thirteenth century as is Domesday Book
for the eleventh.]


22. WRECK OF SEA [_Fine Roll, 10 Edward III, m._ 1], 1337.

The King to the sheriff of Kent, greeting. Because we have been given to
understand that a great mass of a whale lately cast ashore by the coast
of the river Thames between Greenwich and Northfleet in your county,
which should pertain to us as our wreck, and whereof a great part has
been carried away by certain evildoers in contempt of us, remains still
in your keeping, to be delivered to us or others at our command, as is
fitting: We order you, straitly enjoining on you, that you cause all of
the whale aforesaid, which is thus in your keeping, to be entirely
delivered without any delay to our beloved and trusty Nicholas de la
Beche, constable of our Tower of London, to be kept to our use, as has
been more fully enjoined on him by us; and that you in no wise neglect
so to do; for we have commanded the same Nicholas to receive from you
that mass, to be kept in the form aforesaid. Witness the King at
Westminster 14 January. By the King himself.



SECTION III

THE JEWS

   1. Charter of liberties to the Jews, 1201--2. Ordinances of 1253--3.
   Expulsion of a Jew, 1253--4. Punishment for non-residence in a Jewry,
   1270--5. Grant of a Jew, 1271--6. Ordinances of 1271--7. Removal of
   Jewish communities from certain towns to others, 1275--8. Disposition
   of debts due to Jews after their expulsion, 1290.


The documents in the following section illustrate the anomalous position
of the Jews in England, the nature of the royal protection, which
accorded them a security due to them as the king's personal property
(No. 1), the restrictions put upon their religious and social life (No.
2) and upon their possession of land (No. 6), the summary treatment
dealt out to them if they failed to fulfil their function (No. 3), or
dwelt outside the narrow range of a Jewry-town (No. 4), the arbitrary
manner in which they were transferred from person to person, or uprooted
from one town and transplanted (Nos. 5 and 7), and the manner of their
expulsion (No. 8).

Their function in the state was twofold, to supply the crown at any
moment with ready money, and to act as a channel for the conveyance to
the king of the property of his subjects. The degree of their usefulness
must be gauged by the provisions of their charter (No. 1). It is
reasonable to suppose that their expulsion was only determined on when
the crown had drained their resources, or when, as was the case, there
were other supplies available from a class of financiers less obnoxious
to the racial and religious prejudices of the age. The place of the Jews
was immediately occupied by the merchants of Lucca, and later by the
Friscobaldi, the Bardi and Peruzzi and other wealthy societies of
Italian merchant-bankers.


AUTHORITIES

   The principal modern writers dealing with the subject in this section
   are:--Jacobs, _The Jews in Angevin England_; Jacobs, _London Jewry_
   (Anglo-Jewish Exhibition Papers); Gross, _Exchequer of the Jews_
   (Anglo-Jewish Exhibition Papers); Rigg, _Select Pleas of the
   Exchequer of the Jews_ (Selden Society); Rye, _Persecution of the
   Jews in England_ (Anglo-Jewish Exhibition Papers); Abrahams, _The
   Expulsion of the Jews from England_.


1. CHARTER OF LIBERTIES TO THE JEWS[80] [_Charter Roll, 2 John, m._ 5.],
1201.

John by the grace of God, etc. Know ye that we have granted to all Jews
of England and Normandy that they may freely and honourably reside in
our land, and hold of us all things that they held of King Henry, our
father's grandfather, and all things that they now hold reasonably in
their lands and fees and pawns and purchases, and that they may have all
their liberties and customs as well and peaceably and honourably as they
had them in the time of the aforesaid King Henry, our father's
grandfather.

And if a plaint shall have arisen between Christian and Jew, he who
shall have appealed the other shall have witnesses for the deraignment
of his plaint, to wit, a lawful Christian and a lawful Jew. And if the
Jew shall have a writ touching his plaint, his writ shall be his
witness; and if a Christian shall have a plaint against a Jew, it shall
be judged by the Jew's peers.

And when a Jew be dead, his body shall not be detained above ground, but
his heir shall have his money and his debts; so that he be not disturbed
thereon, if he have an heir who will answer for him and do right
touching his debts and his forfeit.

And it shall be lawful for Jews without hindrance to receive and buy all
things which shall be brought to them, except those which are of the
Church and except cloth stained with blood. And if a Jew be appealed by
any man without witness, he shall be quit of that appeal by his bare
oath upon his Book. And in like manner he shall be quit of an appeal
touching those things which pertain to our crown, by his bare oath upon
his Roll.

And if there shall be dispute between Christian and Jew touching the
loan of any money, the Jew shall prove his principal and the Christian
the interest.

And it shall be lawful for the Jew peaceably to sell his pawn after it
shall be certain that he has held it for a whole year and a day.

And Jews shall not enter into a plea save before us or before those who
guard our castles, in whose bailiwicks Jews dwell.

And wherever there be Jews, it shall be lawful for them to go
whithersoever they will with all their chattels, as our own goods, and
it shall be unlawful for any to retain them or to forbid them this
freedom.

And we order that they be quit throughout all England and Normandy of
all customs and tolls and prisage of wine, as our own chattel. And we
command and order you that you guard and defend and maintain them.

And we forbid any man to implead them touching these things aforesaid
against this charter, on pain of forfeiture to us, as the charter of
King Henry, our father, reasonably testifies. Witnesses; Geoffrey Fitz
Peter, Earl of Essex; William Marshal, Earl of Pembroke; Henry de Bohun,
Earl of Hereford; Robert de Turnham; William Briwere; etc. Dated by the
hand of Simon, Archdeacon of Wells, at Marlborough, on the 10th day of
April in the second year of our reign.

[Footnote 80: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 15, p. 1.]


2. ORDINANCES OF 1253[81] [_Close Roll, 37 Henry III, m._ 18].

The King has provided and decreed, etc., that no Jew dwell in England
unless he do the King service, and that as soon as a Jew shall be born,
whether male or female, in some way he shall serve the King. And that
there be no communities of the Jews in England save in those places
wherein such communities were in the time of the lord King John, the
King's father. And that in their synagogues the Jews, one and all,
worship in subdued tones according to their rite, so that Christians
hear it not. And that all Jews answer to the rector of the parish in
which they dwell for all parochial dues belonging to their houses. And
that no Christian nurse hereafter suckle or nourish the male child of
any Jew, and that no Christian man or woman serve any Jew or Jewess, nor
eat with them, nor dwell in their house. And that no Jew or Jewess eat
or buy meat in Lent. And that no Jew disparage the Christian faith, nor
publicly dispute touching the same. And that no Jew have secret
intercourse with any Christian woman, nor any Christian man with a
Jewess. And that every Jew wear on his breast a conspicuous badge. And
that no Jew enter any church or any chapel save in passing through, nor
stay therein to the dishonour of Christ. And that no Jew in any wise
hinder another Jew willing to be converted to the Christian faith. And
that no Jew be received in any town without the special licence of the
King, save in those towns wherein Jews have been wont to dwell.[82]

And the justices appointed to the guardianship of the Jews are commanded
to cause these provisions to be carried into effect and straitly kept on
pain of forfeiture of the goods of the Jews aforesaid. Witness the King
at Westminster on the 31st day of January.

By the King and Council.

[Footnote 81: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 15, p.
xlviii.]

[Footnote 82: See below, No. 6.]


3. EXPULSION OF A JEW[83] [_Jews' Plea Rolls, 6, m. 8_], 1253.

The King, etc., to the sheriff of Kent, etc. Know that we caused to be
assessed before us upon Salle, a Jew, a tallage to be rendered on
Wednesday next before Whitsunday in the thirty-seventh year, and because
the same Jew rendered not his tallage on the said day, and on the same
day received a command on our behalf before the justices [appointed to
the guardianship of the Jews] that within three days after the aforesaid
Wednesday he should make his way to the port of Dover to go forth there
with his wife and never to return, saving to the King his lands [rents
and tenements and chattels]: We command you that by oath of twelve [good
and lawful men] you make diligent enquiry what lands [rents and
tenements and chattels] he had on the said day, and who [holds or hold
the same] and how much they are worth, saving the service, etc., and how
much they are worth for sale; and that you enquire also by oath, etc.,
what chattels he had in all chirographs outside the chest, and what they
are worth, and to whose hands they have come, and that you cause
proclamation to be made that none of Salle's debtors hereafter render a
penny to him,--let the proclamation be made in every hundred, city,
etc.,--and that you take into our hand all the lands, rents and
tenements and chattels aforesaid, and keep them safely until [we make
other order thereon]; and let the inquisition come on the morrow of Holy
Trinity.

[Footnote 83: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 15, p. 29.]


4. PUNISHMENT FOR NON-RESIDENCE IN A JEWRY[84] [_Jews' Plea Rolls, 6,
m._ 7d.], 1270.

Devon. Because Jacob of Norwich, a Jew, dwells at Honiton without the
King's licence, where there is no community of Jews, the sheriff is
ordered to take into the King's hand all goods and chattels of Jacob,
and to keep them safely until [the King make other order thereon], and
to have his body before [the justices appointed to the guardianship of
the Jews] on the octave of Holy Trinity, to answer, etc.; and to certify
[the Treasurer and Barons of the Exchequer] what goods [and chattels] of
the said Jacob he has taken, On the same day, etc.

[Footnote 84: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 15, p. 61.]


5. GRANT OF A JEW[85] [_Jews' Plea Rolls, 6, m. 10_], 1271.

Henry, etc., to all, etc., greeting. Whereas we have given and granted
to Edmund, our dearest son, Aaron, son of Vives, a Jew of London, with
all his goods and chattels and other things which may pertain to us
touching the aforesaid Jew; We, at the instance of our aforesaid son,
willing to show more abundant grace to the aforesaid Aaron, grant that
in all pleas moved or to be moved for or against him, there be
associated with the justices appointed to the guardianship of the Jews,
on behalf of and by the choice of our son, an assessor to hear and
determine those pleas according to the Law and Custom of Jewry. We have
granted also to the same Jew that by licence of our aforesaid son he may
give and sell his debts to whomsoever he will, and that any man soever
may buy them, notwithstanding the Provision made of late that no Jew may
sell his debts to any Christians, and that no Christian may buy the
same, without our will and licence. In witness whereof, etc. Witness
myself at Westminster on the---- day of January in the 55th year of our
reign.

[Footnote 85: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 15, p. 62.]


6. ORDINANCES OF 1271[86] [_Patent Roll, 55 Henry III, m._
10d.].

The King to his beloved and trusty men, his Mayor and Sheriffs of
London, and to all his bailiffs and trusty men to whom [these present
letters shall come], greeting. Know ye that to the honour of God and the
Church Universal, and for the amendment and profit of our land and the
relief of Christians from the damages and burdens which they have borne
on account of the freeholds which the Jews of our realm claim to have in
lands, tenements, fees, rents and other holdings; and that prejudice may
not grow hereafter to us or the commonalty of our realm or to the realm
itself: We have provided by the counsel of the prelates, magnates and
chiefs who are of our council, and also have ordained and decreed for us
and our heirs that no Jew have a freehold in manors, lands, tenements,
fees, rents and holdings whatsoever by charter, gift, feoffment,
confirmation or any other obligation, or in any other wise; so however
that they may dwell hereafter in their houses in which they themselves
dwell in cities, boroughs or other towns, and may have them as they have
been wont to have them in times past; and also that they may lawfully
let to Jews only and not to Christians other their houses, which they
have to let; so, however, that it be not lawful for our Jews of London
to buy or in any other wise purchase[87] more houses than they now have
in our city of London, whereby the parish churches of the same city or
the rectors of the same may incur loss. Nevertheless the same Jews of
London shall be able to repair their ancient houses and buildings
formerly demolished and destroyed, and restore them at their will to
their former condition. We have also provided and decreed by the same
our council that touching their houses aforesaid to be dwelt in or let,
as is aforesaid, no Jew plead or be able to plead by our original writs
of Chancery but only before our justices appointed to the guardianship
of the Jews by the writs of Jewry hitherto used and accustomed. Touching
lands and holdings, however, whereof Jews were enfeoffed before the
present Statute, which also they now hold, we will that such
infeudations and gifts be totally annulled, and that the lands and
tenements remain to the Christians who demised the same to them; so,
however, that the Christians satisfy the Jews of the money or chattel
specified in their charters and chirographs,[88] which the Jews gave to
the Christians for such gift or infeudation, without interest; with this
condition added, that if those Christians cannot satisfy them thereof
forthwith, it be lawful for the Jews aforesaid to demise those tenements
to other Christians, until their chattels can be levied therefrom
without interest by reasonable extent, according to the true value of
the same, saving, however, to the Christians their lodging, so that the
Jew receive therefrom his money or chattel by the hands of Christians
and not of Jews, as is aforesaid. And if it happen that any Jew
hereafter receive feoffment from any Christian of any fee or tenement
against the present Statute, the Jew shall altogether lose the said
tenement or fee, and the same shall be taken into our hand and kept
safely, and those Christians or their heirs shall have again that land
or tenement from our hand; so, however, that they then pay to us the
whole sum of money which they received from the Jews for such feoffment;
or if their means are not sufficient therefor, then they shall render to
us and our heirs at our Exchequer yearly the true value of those
tenements or fees, by true and reasonable extent of the same, until we
be fully satisfied of such money or chattel.

Moreover touching nurses of young children, bakers, brewers, and cooks
employed by Jews, because Jews and Christians are diverse in faith, we
have provided and decreed that no Christian man or woman presume to
minister to them in the aforesaid services.

And because Jews have long been wont to receive by the hands of
Christians certain rents of lands and tenements of Christians as in
perpetuity, which rents were also called fees, we will and have decreed
that the Statute made of late by us thereon remain in full force, and be
not impaired in any wise by the present Statute.

And therefore we command, straitly enjoining on you, that you cause the
Provision, Ordinance and Statute aforesaid to be publicly proclaimed
throughout your whole bailiwick, and to be straitly kept and observed.
In witness whereof, etc. Witness the King at Westminster, July 25.

In the same manner order is made to the several sheriffs throughout
England.

[Footnote 86: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 15, p. 1.]

[Footnote 87: _i.e._, Acquire.]

[Footnote 88: Indented bonds.]


7. REMOVAL OF JEWISH COMMUNITIES FROM CERTAIN TOWNS TO OTHERS[89]
[_Jews' Plea Rolls, 18, m. 6_], 1275.

By writ of the lord the King directed to the justices in these
words:--Whereas by our letters patent we have granted to our dearest
mother, Eleanor, Queen of England, that no Jew shall dwell or stay in
any towns which she holds in dower by assignment of the lord King Henry,
our father, and of ourself, within our realm, so long as the same towns
be in her hand; and for this cause we have provided that the Jews of
Marlborough be transferred to our town of Devizes, the Jews of
Gloucester to our town of Bristol, the Jews of Worcester to our town of
Hereford, and the Jews of Cambridge to our city of Norwich, with their
Chirograph Chests, and with all their goods, and that henceforth they
dwell and stay in the aforesaid towns and city among the rest of our
Jews there: We command you that you cause the aforesaid Jews of
Marlborough, Gloucester, Worcester and Cambridge to be removed from
those towns, without doing any damage to them in respect of their
persons or their goods, and to transfer themselves to the places
aforesaid with their Chirograph Chests, as safely to our use as you
shall think it may be done. Witness myself at Clarendon on the 16th day
of January in the third year of our reign.

The sheriffs of the counties aforesaid, and the constables, are ordered
to cause the aforesaid Jews to be transferred to the places aforesaid.

[Footnote 89: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 15, p. 85.]


8. DISPOSITION OF DEBTS DUE TO JEWS AFTER THEIR EXPULSION[90] [_Close
Roll, 18 Edward I, m. 1_], 1290.

Edward etc. to the Treasurer and Barons of the Exchequer, greeting.
Whereas formerly in our Parliament at Westminster on the quinzaine of
St. Michael in the third year of our reign, to the honour of God and the
profit of the people of our realm, we ordained and decreed that no Jew
thenceforth should lend anything at usury to any Christian on lands,
rents or other things, but that they should live by their commerce and
labour; and the same Jews, afterwards maliciously deliberating among
themselves, contriving a worse sort of usury which they called courtesy
(_curialitatem_), have depressed our people aforesaid on all sides under
colour thereof, the last offence doubling the first; whereby, for their
crimes and to the honour of the Crucified, we have caused those Jews to
go forth from our realm as traitors: We, wishing to swerve not from our
former choice, but rather to follow it, do make totally null and void
all manner of penalties and usuries and every sort thereof, which could
be demanded by actions by reason of the Jewry from any Christians of our
realm for any times whatsoever; wishing that nothing be in any wise
demanded from the Christians aforesaid by reason of the debts aforesaid,
save only the principal sums which they received from the Jews
aforesaid; the amount of which debts we will that the Christians
aforesaid verify before you by the oath of three good and lawful men by
whom the truth of the matter may the better be known, and thereafter pay
the same to us at terms convenient to them to be fixed by you. And
therefore we command you that you cause our said grace so piously
granted to be read in the aforesaid Exchequer, and to be enrolled on the
rolls of the same Exchequer, and to be straitly kept, according to the
form above noted. Witness myself at King's Clipstone on the 5th day of
November in the eighteenth year of our reign.

[Footnote 90: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 15, p. xl.]



SECTION IV

THE MANOR

   1. Extent of the manor of Havering, 1306-7--2. Extracts from the
   Court Rolls of the manor of Bradford, 1349-58--3. Deed illustrating
   the distribution of strips, 1397--4. Regulation of the common fields
   of Wimeswould, _c._ 1425--5. Lease of a manor to the tenants,
   1279--6. Grant of a manor to the customary tenants at fee farm,
   _ante_ 1272--7. Lease of manorial holdings, 1339--8. An agreement
   between lord and tenants, 1386--9. Complaints against a reeve,
   1278--10. An eviction from copyhold land, _temp._ Hen. IV.-Hen.
   VI.--11. Statute of Merton, 1235-6--12. An enclosure allowed,
   1236-7--13. An enclosure disallowed, 1236-7--14. A villein on ancient
   demesne dismissed to his lord's court, 1224--15. Claim to be on
   ancient demesne defeated, 1237-8--16. The little writ of right,
   1390--17. Villeinage established, 1225--18. Freedom and freehold
   established, 1236-7--19. A villein pleads villeinage on one occasion
   and denies it on another, 1220--20. An assize allowed to a villein,
   1225--21. A freeman holding in villeinage, 1228--22. Land held by
   charter recovered from the lord, 1227--23. The manumission of a
   villein, 1334--24. Grant of a bondman, 1358--25. Imprisonment of a
   gentleman claimed as a bondman, 1447--26. Claim to a villein, _temp._
   Hen. IV.-Hen. VI.--27. The effect of the Black Death, 1350--28.
   Accounts of the iron-works of South Frith before and after the Black
   Death, 1345-50.--29. The Peasants' Revolt, 1381.


The attempt to find an inclusive definition of the manor, true alike for
every century and for all parts of the country, involves a risk of
divorcing the institution from its historical associations, and of
depriving it of its social and economic significance. The typical manor
exists only in theory, actual manors being continuously modified by the
inevitable changes due to the growth of population and commercial
expansion. Such modifications of economic structure proceeded with great
rapidity between the Conquest and the beginning of the fourteenth
century. A comparison of the neat simplicity of the royal manor of
Havering in Domesday Book (Section I., No. 10) with its highly complex
organisation in the time of Edward I. (below, No. 1), reveals an
extraordinary development; the 10 hides, 40 villeins and 40 ploughs of
the one are represented by the 40 virgates of the other, but the
elaborate hierarchy of tenants in the later survey throws into strange
relief the primitive customary nucleus and gives it the appearance
already of an archaic survival. It is reasonable to assume that the
generation which immediately followed the Conquest witnessed a
crystallisation of custom, which preserved untouched for centuries the
lord's demesne and the common fields; while on the other hand the
colonisation of the waste by progressive enclosures slowly altered the
social balance, emphasising the disabilities of the villein class and
widening the gulf between lord and customary tenant. The economic
position of the customary tenants was becoming worse by the operation of
natural laws, for not only was the subdivision of the virgates reaching
its limits, but common rights were being continuously diminished by
enclosure. Large numbers of the Havering virgaters in 1307 were
occupying quite small holdings, while the purprestures, or encroachments
on the waste, were becoming formidable. These considerations suggest
that early manorial history can best be studied by investigations into
the extent of enclosure in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, and
that concentration on the unprogressive nucleus of the manor, on
villeinage and customary tenure, may well blind the student to the
greater economic significance of the developments outside the common
fields. It thus appears probable that the visitation of the Black Death
will fall into place as an incident rather than an epoch.

The documents given below attempt to illustrate manorial history in both
its praedial and its personal aspects. The essential features of the
manor, in its legal aspect, namely, the customary court, customary
tenure, and customary services, are shown in the Extent (No. 1) and the
extracts from a Court Roll (No. 2), while the common-field system and
the distribution of strips appear in Nos. 3 and 4. The commutation of
service for rent (Nos. 1, 8, 9) and the transition from customary to
leasehold tenure (Nos. 7, 10) show natural forces at work undermining
the traditional economy; while the leasing of customary holdings (No. 7)
or of a whole manor to all the tenants in common (No. 5) or to a farmer
(No. 10), the grant of manors to the tenants at fee farm in perpetuity
(No. 6), and the enclosure of waste (Nos. 1, 11, 12, 13), illustrate the
wide range of variety possible in the actual management of the
agricultural unit. There appears to be little doubt that the villeins
suffered a considerable depression as the result of the Norman Conquest;
their refusal, however, to acquiesce permanently in the changed
conditions is clear from their continued efforts to rise out of their
disabilities and to improve their social and economic status, a movement
which begins by the attempts of individuals to climb in the scale by
flight (No. 2), by claims to be on the king's ancient demesne (Nos. 14,
15), and by the bringing of actions before the justices of assize, a
procedure open only to freemen (Nos. 17-22), and gathers force in the
fourteenth century until it culminates in the "great fellowship" which
organised a self-conscious class revolt throughout the country (No. 29).
No. 16 is an instance of the little writ of right, one of the privileges
of the favoured tenants on ancient demesne. Manumission was always a
possible method of achieving freedom (No. 23), and it may be that the
grant of a bondman (No. 24) was a stage in the process of emancipation.
Manumission became common at a time when the demand for English wool was
encouraging pasture at the sacrifice of tillage, but even in the
fifteenth century men might suffer atrocious ignominy through the
imputation of villeinage (Nos. 25, 26). The dislocation caused by the
Black Death is dramatically illustrated in the Court-Roll (No. 2), the
letter from the abbot of Selby (No. 27), and the accounts of the South
Frith iron-works in the year before and the year after the first
visitation (No. 28); it is to be noted, in the latter document, that for
the years 1347-8 and 1348-9 there are no accounts extant at all.


AUTHORITIES

   The principal modern writers dealing with the subject in this section
   are:--Pollock and Maitland, _History of English Law_; Vinogradoff,
   _Villeinage in England_; Ashley, _The Character of Villein Tenure_
   (English Historical Review, VIII.); Rogers, _History of Agriculture
   and Prices_; Rogers, _Six Centuries of Work and Wages_; Maitland,
   _History of a Cambridgeshire Manor_; Bateson, _Mediæval England_;
   Vinogradoff, _Oxford Studies in Social and Legal History, II._; Hone,
   _The Manor and Manorial Records_; Elton, _Custom and Tenant Right_;
   Gasquet, _The Great Pestilence_; Little, _The Black Death in
   Lancashire_ (English Historical Review, V.); Oman, _The Great
   Revolt_; Powell, _The Rising in East Anglia in 1381_.

   _Documentary authorities_:--Durham Halmote Rolls (Surtees Society);
   Custumals of Battle Abbey (Camden Society); Boldon Book Survey of
   Possessions of the See of Durham (Surtees Society); Select Pleas in
   Manorial Courts (Maitland, Selden Society); The Court Baron (Maitland
   & Baildon, Selden Society); Cartulary of Ramsey Abbey (Rolls Series);
   Inquisition of Manors of Glastonbury Abbey (Roxburgh Club);
   Manchester Court Leet Records (Harland, Chetham Society). A large
   number of manorial records are edited among the publications of the
   Society of Antiquaries and County Record and Archæological Societies.

   _Literary authorities_:--Robert Grossteste, _Epistoloe_ (Rolls
   Series); Walter of Henley, _Husbandry_ (Lamond); _Piers Plowman_;
   Chaucer, _Canterbury Tales_.


1. EXTENT OF THE MANOR OF HAVERING [_Rentals and Surveys, Roll_ 189],
1306-7.

The Manor of Havering extended by the order of the King before ... and
Richard le Rus in the thirty-fifth year of the reign by Richard of the
Elms (_de Ulmis_)[91]....

Who say on their oath that the King has there in demesne 223-1/2 acres
of arable land, whereof the acre is worth 6d. a year.

Sum, 111s. 9d.

Further, 38 acres of arable land, which Adam de Rumford holds, which are
of the demesne and were arrented by William Brito and his fellows, as is
found below.

Further, 5 acres of arable land, which Walter le Blake holds, and they
are of the demesne and were arrented by the same as below, etc.

Further, 15 acres of meadow, whereof each is worth 16d. a year.

Sum, 20s.

Further, 4 acres of meadow, which Baldwin le Blund holds, which are of
the demesne and were arrented by the same as below, etc.

Further, 23 acres of several pasture, whereof each is worth 14-1/4d. a
year.

Sum, 27s. 3-3/4d.

Further, they say that the King can have in the common pasture, to wit,
in the woods, heaths and marshes, his oxen and cows, sheep, horses and
swine and other his beasts at his will, and so that all the tenants of
the same manor may have their beasts and all their cattle in the
aforesaid common when they will. And if the King have no beasts in the
common, he shall take nothing therefor.

Further, they say that the King has a plot of land in his park enclosed
with hedge and dyke, which is called the King's garden; but it is not
tilled; therefore there is no profit.

Further, they say that the King has there his park enclosed round with a
paling, and as well the men of the same manor as others of the
neighbourhood outside the manor ought to renew and repair that paling as
often as need be,[92] according as is found below; and in that park no
cattle nor any beasts ought to enter except by licence of the King's
bailiff. And if any cattle or any beasts enter the same park without
licence of the bailiff, they are forfeit and must be ransomed at the
will of the bailiff, if they are foreign, and if they are of the manor,
then they are to be ransomed for 1d. for each foot, if it please the
bailiff to take so much.

Further, they say that the King has in the same manor three foreign
woods pertaining to the aforesaid manor, which the King's bailiffs of
the same manor have always had in keeping, together with the aforesaid
manor, and they have had attachments and all other esplees[93] of the
same woods, to complete the farm of the same manor, to wit, Westwode,
Haraldeswode and Crocleph. And in those three woods all the tenants of
the same manor ought to have common of herbage for all their beasts and
all their cattle throughout the whole year, except between the feast of
Michaelmas and the feast of Martinmas,[94] and then also there may enter
into the same woods the horses of the aforesaid tenants, as also
throughout the whole year, and the swine of the same tenants for
pannage,[95] and no other beasts. And if sheep or oxen be found in the
aforesaid woods, or geese, except when driven to the water or the market
or elsewhere, so that they make no stay in the same, whosesoever they
be, they ought to be imparked and kept until they shall have satisfied
the King's bailiff for that trespass. And if within the aforesaid time
any foreign beast, which does not belong to any tenant of the manor, be
found in the aforesaid woods, the King's bailiff can ransom it, to wit,
for 40d. for each ox or cow, or 1d. for each foot of each beast, or
otherwise, as he shall please, within 40d. And if any foreign cart shall
pass through the aforesaid woods within the aforesaid time, it shall
give to the King's bailiff 1d. of custom. And if any foreigner shall
drive his beasts through the aforesaid woods within the aforesaid time,
he shall give to the King's bailiff 1d. of custom. And these customs are
called "leph" within the aforesaid time.

Further, they say that the King's bailiff ought to have all the wood
thrown down by the wind and all windfall wood in the aforesaid three
woods within the aforesaid time, to complete the farm of the manor.

And the pannage of the whole manor and the aforesaid customs called
"leph" and the wood and windfall wood within the aforesaid time are
extended in the profit of the manor at 100s.

Further, they say that no men of the foreign neighbourhood ought to have
common in the aforesaid woods at any time of the year, nor ought their
beasts or cattle to enter the aforesaid woods except by licence of the
bailiff. And if they enter, they ought to be imparked and kept until
they shall satisfy the bailiff for that trespass.

Further, they say that every customary cart which carries wood or
charcoal or any other thing of custom for sale and passes through any of
the aforesaid woods shall give to the bailiff 4d. of custom.

Names of the tenants holding virgate lands, and rents of the same
virgates and customs which pertain to them.

[Sidenote: 3-1/2 virgates.]

John de Walda holds 3-1/2 virgates with their homages appurtenant and
renders 76s. a year at the two terms, without customs.

Sum, 76s.

[Sidenote: Virgate.]

Maurice Algar holds 1\2 virgate with its homages appurtenant and renders
9s. a year at the two terms.

William the Smith holds two parts of half a virgate with its homages
appurtenant and renders 6s. a year at the two terms.

Richard Maneland holds a third part of half a virgate with its homages
and renders 3s. a year at the two terms.

Sum, 18s.

[Sidenote: Virgate].

Richard de Dovere holds one virgate with its homage appurtenant and
renders 30s. a year at the two terms; which virgate was of Hamo Peverel.

Sum, 30s.

[Sidenote: Virgate.]

Nicholas de la Hulle holds a fourth part of a virgate with homages and
renders 5s. a year.

Walter de la Hulle holds a fourth part of a virgate with homages and
renders 4s. 2d. a year at the two terms.

Richard son of Thomas de Bruera holds a fourth part of a virgate with
homages and renders 30d. a year at the two terms.

William Annore holds a fourth part of a virgate with homages and renders
6s. a year at the two terms.[96]

Sum, 17s. 8d.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: Virgate.]

William Emeline holds a third part of a fourth part of a virgate and
renders 20d. a year at the two terms.

William Snelling holds a third part of a fourth part of a virgate and
renders 20d. a year at the two terms.

John Dasel holds a third part of a fourth part of a virgate and renders
20d. a year at the two terms.

William Trilling holds two parts of half a virgate and renders 10s. a
year at the two terms.

William Don holds a third part of half a virgate with homage at the
Faucur and renders 5s. a year at the two terms.

Simon Pecoc holds a third part of a fourth part of a virgate and renders
2s. 6d. a year at the two terms.

Isabel Pecoc holds a third part of a fourth part of a virgate and
renders 2s. 6d. a year at the two terms.

Richard the Fuller holds a third part of a fourth part of a virgate and
renders 2s. 6d. a year at the two terms. Sum, 27s. 6d.

[Sidenote: Half a Virgate.]

Henry de la Bruer holds a fourth part of a virgate and renders 7s. 6d. a
year at the two terms.

Simon Pecoc holds an eighth part of a virgate and renders 3s. 9d. at the
two terms.

Isabel Pecoc holds an eighth part of a virgate and renders 3s. 9d. a
year at the two terms. Sum, 15s.

Sum total of rent of 39 virgates a year: 46l. 9s. 5-1/2d.

[Sidenote: Virgate.]

Further, John de Walda holds a virgate of land which was arrented first
to the use of the King in the presence of William Brito and his fellows,
approvers, and renders therefor 30s. a year of rent of assize.

And thus there are in all in the aforesaid manor 40 virgates of land
which render yearly in rent of assize:

Sum, 47l. 19s. 5-1/2d.

Further, from works of the aforesaid 40 virgates 14l. yearly.

And be it known that each virgate ought to do all the works
underwritten, and the works of each virgate are worth by themselves 7s.
a year.

Virgate works.--Further, it is acknowledged by the aforesaid jurors that
each virgate in the aforesaid manor owes all the customs underwritten,
and so in proportion half a virgate and other parts according to the
portion and quantity of land, as the virgate is divided, to wit, to
plough 4 acres a year in the winter season, and the ploughing of each
acre is worth 4d. Further, it ought to harrow those 4 acres, and the
harrowing of each acre is worth 1/2d. Further it ought to thresh and
winnow 1 quarter of rye for seed, and that threshing and winnowing is
worth 2d. Further it ought to reap, bind and cock 4 acres, and this
custom is worth 3d. for each acre, to wit, of rye. Further it ought to
plough 4 acres in the summer season, and the ploughing of each acre is
worth 3d. Further it ought to harrow those 4 acres, and the harrowing of
each acre is worth 1/2d. Further it ought to thresh and winnow 1-1/2
quarters of oats, and the threshing and winnowing is worth 1-1/2d.
Further it ought to reap, bind and cock 4 acres of oats, and that custom
is worth 2-1/2d. for each acre. Further it ought to find two men for one
day to hoe until noon, and that custom is worth 2d. Further it ought to
find two men for one day to hoe in the summer season until noon, and
that custom is worth 2d. Further it ought to carry the corn from the
field of the lord the King to the grange with one waggon for one day
until noon, and that carrying is worth 3-1/2d. Further it ought to find
four men to lift the hay in the meadow of the lord the King for one day,
and that custom is worth 2d. Further it ought to carry a waggonload of
hay, and each carrying is worth 3d. Further it ought to manure with
manure of the lord the King 4 selions[97] 40 perches in length in the
next field ploughed for fallow, and that manuring is worth 4d. And it
ought to do all these customs beforewritten at its own cost.

Sum of the aforesaid works, 6s. 2d. And of lawful increment for each
virgate, 10d. a year. And thus the sum of the works of each virgate is
7s. a year.

Further, each virgate ought to enclose 6 perches of the paling of the
park of the lord the King in the same manor with timber given by livery
of the foresters and parkers. Further, all the tenants in the said manor
ought to pay pannage for all the swine which they have between the feast
of St. Michael[98] and the feast of St. Martin,[99] except those whom
the King's charter protects, wheresoever they be within the manor, to
wit, they owe a tenth part of the value of each pig which is worth more
than 5d., whether there be acorns (_pesona_) or not; so nevertheless
that for a pig worth more than 20d. the tenant shall give only 2d.
Further all the tenants and sub-tenants throughout the bounds ought to
guard the prisoners of the lord the King by night, except the cotmen,
who ought to guard the said prisoners by day; and the prisoners ought to
be imprisoned at the houses of the cotmen by night and day from house to
house until their term be finished.

Names of the tenants of the forelands and rents of the same
forelanders--

[Sidenote: Foreland.]

  The relict of William Arnold holds 1 foreland
  and renders yearly                                             2s.

  Richard of the Elms holds 1 foreland and
  renders yearly                                                 4s.

  John the Smith                                                 3s.

  John of the Oak of the burnt wood                                 18d.

  Richard de la Strate                                               9d.

  Arnewic May                                                       12d.

  Gilbert de la Berewe                                           3s. 4d.

  William le Hettere holds 1 foreland and
  renders yearly 1d. and a ploughshare
  worth 6d.                                                          7d.

  John de Bollond                                                5s.

  William Goldstan                                               2s.

  Adam de Rumford                                                   12d.

  John de Haketon                                                2s.

  Richard of the Elms                                                6d.

  Nicholas de Wybrugge                                           4s. 4d.

  Roger son of Elias holds 1 foreland which
  Gerald le Petit held and renders yearly                        3s. 6d.

  Andrew de la Lake                                                 22d.

  The heirs of William son of Guy                                   10d.

  Sum of the rents of the aforesaid forelanders yearly,         37s. 2d.

[Sidenote: Sum.]

Names of the tenants assigned to serve the King's table.

[Sidenote: Of the Table of the King.]

Simon Weyland holds the swineherd's land, and renders 1/2 mark a year,
because there are no swine.

[Sidenote: Virgate.]

The heir of William the Weaver holds the shepherd's land, and renders
12s. a year, because there are no animals.

John le Messager holds one ploughman's land, and renders 12s. a year,
because there is no plough.

Adam le Wardur holds another ploughman's land, and renders 12s. a year,
because there is no plough.

William Anore holds the smith's land, and renders 5s. a year, because
there is no plough.

Reckoned as a virgate for the works of the paling.

Sum of rents of the aforesaid lands of the King's table, 47s. 8d.

[Sidenote: King's Messenger.]

Geoffrey son of Peter holds 6 acres of land, for which land he ought to
carry the writs of the lord the King, when they come in the manor of the
lord the King, wheresoever the bailiff shall wish within the county, at
his own cost, and receiving 1-1/2d. for going a reasonable day's journey
out of the county and nothing for the return journey.

Names of the cotters and rents of assize of their tenements and the
customs of the same.

[Sidenote: Cotters.]

[Sidenote: Virgate.]

Geoffrey Scurel holds one cotland and renders yearly 5s. and for works
49d.

Peter le Abbot and his partners hold one cotland and render yearly 4s.
and for works 49d.

William son of Savary holds one cotland and renders yearly 4s. and for
works 49d.

Juliana relict of Edmund and her partners hold one cotland and render
yearly 5s. and for works 49d.

Richard del Ho holds one cotland and renders yearly 3s. and for works
49d.

William de Ros and Adam Pays hold one cotland and render yearly 5s. and
for works 49d.

William de Uphavering the younger holds one cotland and renders yearly
5s. and for works 49d.

Reckoned as a virgate for the works of the paling.

[Sidenote: Sums.]

Sum of rents of assize of the aforesaid cotters yearly, 31s.

Sum of the same works yearly, 28s. 7d.

Sum of both, that is, rents of assize and the same works yearly, 59s.
7d.

Lands occupied over[100] the King and arrented by William Brito and his
fellows.

Richard Hageman holds 16 acres of land of new purpresture[101] and
renders yearly half a mark.[102]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: Sum.]

Sum, 102s. 11-1/2d.

Richard Segar holds two dayworks with a house of the same [_i.e._ of new
purpresture] and renders yearly 8d.

The same holds 1-1/2 acres of old purpresture and renders yearly
6d.[103]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: Sum.]

Sum, 10l. 1s. 6d.

Edmund Prest holds 5 acres and renders yearly 10d.[104]

       *       *       *       *       *

The prior of Hornchurch holds 66 acres and 2 dayworks of land and 1 rood
of meadow of encroachment and renders yearly half a mark.

Richard de Dovere holds the watercourse from Romford bridge to the park
of Havering, and for the watercourse from the end of the fishpond of the
abbot of Waltham between Havering and Weald to the mete and bound of the
limits of Havering as far as the watercourse extends, and renders yearly
12d.

Richard de Dovere holds 85 acres of demesne in several places and
renders yearly 20s.

[Sidenote: Sum.]

Sum, 117s. 7d.

Sum total of all lands occupied over the King, 21l. 2s. 0-1/2d.

[Sidenote: Subtenants.]

Names of all sub-tenants in the town of Havering who have chattels to
the value of 40d. of whom it is acknowledged by the aforesaid jurors
that each such tenant ought to reap, bind and cock one acre of oats of
the demesne of the lord the King in autumn, and to find one man to mow
in the King's meadow for one day at his own cost. And every of them,
according as they join in a plough for ploughing their own land, shall
plough for the lord the King each year for one day at the summer
ploughing and for another day at the winter ploughing.[105]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: Sum.]

Sum of the rents of the aforesaid sub-tenants without ploughing, 4l.
6s.

The King is in seisin of the wardship of the lands and heirs of all the
tenants of the same manor, and can hold them when he deems it to his
advantage, and then he shall have no heriot. And if he deem it not to be
expedient for him to hold the wardship of the lands and heirs in his own
hand, he can demise the same, and then he shall have a heriot and
relief.

Further, they say that all the tenants of the same manor can marry their
sons and daughters without licence of the King or of his bailiffs,
except the cotmen.

Further, they say that the King can tallage all the tenants of the same
manor, except those who hold by charters of Kings at their will,
according to their means, when he tallage other his demesne manors.

Further, they say that the pleas of court can be worth 40s. a year.

Further, they say that heriots and reliefs and other perquisites can be
worth in common years 53s. 4d.

Further, they say that view of frankpledge can be worth in common years
6s. 8d.

[Sidenote: Sum.]

Sum total of all sums of the same manor, 112l. 10s. 11-3/4d., except
free tenants and the ploughing of sub-tenants and customary carts.

[Footnote 91: And 28 others named.]

[Footnote 92: _cf. above, Rectitudines, p. 5, under Geneat's Service_,
"he must ... cut the deer-hedge and maintain it."]

[Footnote 93: Produce or profits.]

[Footnote 94: November 11.]

[Footnote 95: Food for swine.]

[Footnote 96: Thirty-one virgates follow in like detail.]

[Footnote 97: Strips.]

[Footnote 98: September 29.]

[Footnote 99: November 11.]

[Footnote 100: In feudal law seisin _or_ possession is conceived of as
concrete rather than abstract. Any encroachment on the waste, therefore,
is regarded as the imposition of a new seisin upon the old seisin, as an
occupation over the lord, who in this case is the King.]

[Footnote 101: Encroachment.]

[Footnote 102: A hundred more similar entries follow.]

[Footnote 103: A hundred and two more similar entries follow.]

[Footnote 104: Thirty-nine more similar entries follow.]

[Footnote 105: 174 names follow.]


2. EXTRACTS FROM THE COURT ROLLS OF THE MANOR OF BRADFORD, CO. YORK
[_Court Rolls_, 129, 1957], 1349-1358.

Court of Bradford holden on Saturday, the eve of St. Lucy the Virgin, 23
Edward III.[106]

[Sidenote: [m.20.]]

[Sidenote: Damages.]

Henry son of William the Clerk of Bradford, executor of the will of the
said William, was summoned to answer Richard de Wilseden, chaplain,
touching a plea wherefore he renders not to him 7s. 10d., which he owes
him, because the aforesaid William, his father, whose executor he is,
was bound to him, and which he ought to have paid him at Michaelmas last
past, and which the same Henry still detains from him, to the heavy
damage of the said Richard of 2s. etc. And the aforesaid Henry, being,
present in court, cannot deny that he owes him the said money. It is
therefore awarded that the same Richard recover against him the
aforesaid 7s. 10d., together with his aforesaid damages. And the
aforesaid Henry is in mercy for the unjust detention, etc.

[Sidenote: Mercy, 2d.]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: Entry, 2s.]

Amice, daughter and heir of Roger de Oulesnape, came here into Court and
took a cottage and 4 acres of poor bondage land in the town of Stanbury
after the death of the aforesaid Roger, to hold to her and her heirs
according to the custom of the manor by the services, etc., saving the
right, etc. And she gives to the lord 2s. of fine for entry. Pledge,
Roger son of Jurdan.

[Sidenote: Entry, 2s.]

William Couper, who held a cottage and 4 acres of bondage land there, is
dead; and hereupon came Roger, his son and heir, and took those
tenements, to hold to him and his heirs according to the custom of the
manor by the services, etc., saving the right, etc. And he gives to the
lord 2s. of fine for entry. Pledge, Thomas de Kyghley.

[Sidenote: Entry, 3s.]

Robert son of Roger son of Richard, who held a toft and 8 acres of
bondage land there, is dead. And hereupon came John, his brother and
heir, and took those tenements, to hold to him and his heirs according
to the custom of the manor by the services, etc., saving the right, etc.
And he gives to the lord 3s. of fine for entry. Pledge, Roger son of
Jurdan.

[Sidenote: Entry, 5s.]

Jordan de Stanbury, who held a messuage and 1/2 bovate of bondage land
there, is dead. And hereupon came John, his son and heir, and took those
tenements, to hold to him and his heirs by the services etc., saving the
right, etc. And he gives to the lord 5s. of fine for entry. Pledges,
John son of Roger and Roger son of Jurdan.

John de Oldefeld, who held a messuage and 1/2 bovate of bondage land
there, is dead. And Alice, his daughter and heir, is of the age of half
a year.

[Sidenote: Fine, 2s.]

And hereupon came John Swerd and took those tenements, to hold for a
term of ten years next following fully complete, by the services, etc.
And he gives to the lord 2s. of fine. Pledge, Adam de Oldefeld.

[Sidenote: Entry, 2s.]

Adam Dykson came here into Court and took a messuage and 1/2 bovate of
very poor land, which was of Adam atte Yate, to hold according to the
custom of the manor, by the services, etc., saving the right, etc. And
he gives to the lord 2s. of fine for entry. Pledge, John de Helwyk.

[Sidenote: Entry, 5s.]

Roger Dikson, who held half a messuage and 1/2 bovate of land, is dead.
And hereupon came Robert de Oldefeld, next friend of William, son and
heir of the aforesaid Roger, and took those tenements to the use of the
said William, to hold to him and his heirs, according to the custom of
the manor by the services, etc. And he gives to the lord 5s. of fine in
the name of the said William. Pledge, John Swerd.

[Sidenote: Fine, 2s.]

John Barne of Manningham, who held a messuage and a bovate of bondage
land there, is dead. And hereupon came Margery his wife and took those
tenements, to hold according to the custom of the manor for the term of
her life by the services, etc. And she gives to the lord 2s. of fine.
Pledge, John atte Yate.

[Sidenote: Fealties. Respite of acknowledgement of services.]

Margaret and Agnes, daughters and heirs of Hugh Browne, Alice, Joan and
Juliana, daughters and heirs of John Kyng, Juliana, who was the wife of
Hugh Kyng of Thornton, Robert son of John Bollyng and Elizabeth his
wife, Alice, who was the wife of William le Clerk of Clayton, Alice,
daughter and heir of Robert de Manyngham, and Thomas her husband,
William, son and heir of Ellen Coke, and John (dead), son and heir of
John de Wyndhill, came here into Court and did their fealties, and they
have a day at the next Court to acknowledge their tenements and
services, etc. and also to show their deeds etc.

Agnes Chapman came here into Court and took a small house in Bradford
called the Smythhouse, to hold at the will of the lord by the services.
And she gives to the lord 18d. of fine to have such estate, etc.

[Sidenote: Fine, 12d. (_sic_.)]

[Sidenote: Entry, 8s.]

William Barne, who held 2 messuages and 2 bovates of bondage land in
Manningham, is dead. And hereupon came Hugh, his brother and heir, and
took the aforesaid tenements, to hold to him and his heirs according to
the custom of the manor by the services, etc., saving the right, etc.
And he gives to the lord 8s. of fine for entry. Pledges, Thomas de
Chellowe and John his son.

[Sidenote: Entry, 10s.]

Richard Gilleson, who held there in the same manner 2 messuages and 2
bovates of land, is dead. And hereupon came John, his son and heir, and
took those tenements, to hold to him and his heirs according to the
custom of the manor by the services, etc., saving the right, etc. And he
gives to the lord 10s. of fine for entry. Pledges, Hugh Barne and the
whole homage, etc.

[Sidenote: Entry, 10s.]

John son of Richard Gillesson came here into Court and rendered into the
hands of the lord 2 messuages and 2 bovates of very poor land there to
the use of Thomas de Chellowe for ever. Which tenements were afterwards
granted to the same Thomas, to hold to him and his heirs according to
the custom of the manor by the services, etc., saving the right, etc.
And the same Thomas gives the lord 10s. of fine for entry. Pledges, Hugh
Barne and John Gilleson.

[Sidenote: Fine, 2s.]

William Wilkynson, who held there in like manner a messuage and a bovate
of land, is dead, and Alice his daughter and heir is of the age of half
a year. And hereupon came John Magson, her next friend, to whom,
etc.[107] and took the wardship of the aforesaid land and heir until her
full age, etc., by the services, etc. And he gives to the lord 2s. of
fine for entry. Pledges Hugh Barne and Thomas de Chellowe.

[Sidenote: Fine respited.]

Thomas Neucomen, who held a messuage and a bovate of bondage land in
Bradford, is dead. And hereupon came Margery, daughter and heir of the
same Thomas, and took the aforesaid tenements, to hold to her and her
heirs according to the custom of the manor by the services, etc., saving
the right, etc. And the fine for entry is put in respite until the next
court.

[Sidenote: Distraint.]

[Sidenote: Tenements to be seized.]

William Tompsey of Bradford, the lord's bondman, who held a messuage and
a bovate of bondage land in Bradford, is a runaway, because [he holds]
other tenements in Moreton by York by hereditary descent. Therefore he
is distrained to dwell on the tenement here. Let the tenements at
Moreton be seized into the lord's hand, etc.

[Sidenote: Respite.]

William Clerk of Clayton, who held a messuage and 2 bovates of land in
Clayton by knight service, is dead. Let William, his son and heir, of
the age of two years, together with the tenements aforesaid, be seized
into the hands of the lord the Earl. And hereupon comes Alice, who was
the wife of the same William Clerk, and says that she was jointly
enfeoffed of the aforesaid tenements with the aforesaid William, her
husband, and craves a day at the next Court to show her charters
thereof, and has it. William, the son and heir, is committed to the
wardship of the aforesaid Alice to be kept safely without a wife.
Pledges, William son of Adam of Horton and Roger del Holyns.

[Sidenote: Fine, 10s.]

Whereas before these times a stall was taken from the lord's waste in
the market place of Bradford to be holden by the services of 6d. a year,
and hereupon one Adam Notebroun, receiver of the money of the lord the
Earl [took it], to hold in the said form, etc., and afterwards the same
Adam alienated that stall to one Hugh son of Thomas in fee for [20s.],
on account whereof the stall was seized into the lord's hand according
to the form of the statute; and hereupon the same Hugh comes here and
says that he took the stall for 20s. and paid only 10s. thereof to the
same Adam, etc., and craves that he [may pay the said 10s.] and hold the
stall in the form in which [it was held] after it was taken; which is
granted to him by the steward. Pledge for payment, of the aforesaid
10s. ... And order is made to levy from the aforesaid Adam another 10s.
to the use of the lord, unless he may have better grace by the counsel
of the lord, etc.

[Sidenote: Inquisition of office.]

It is presented by William de Berecroft ... that Thomas son of Thomas
12(d.), Ralph atte Tounhend (8d.), William ... (12d.), and William son
of John (6d.) exercise the trades of tanner and shoemaker. Therefore
they are in mercy. And it is ordered that they be attached to abjure,
etc.

[Sidenote: Mercy, 10d.]

Further, they present that Hugh son of Thomas exercises the trade of
butcher together with the trades of shoemaker and tanner. Therefore it
is ordered that he be attached to abjure those two trades, etc.

[Sidenote: Mercy, 12d.]

Further, that Alice Geldoghter and Adam Notebroun are bakers and sell
bad bread contrary to the assize. Therefore they are [in mercy].

       *       *       *       *       *

Sum of this tourn, with waifs and strays, 24s. 1d.

       *       *       *       *       *

Court of Bradford holden on Thursday next before the feast of St.
Gregory the Pope, 24 Edward III.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: Acknowledgment of service.]

Thomas le Harpour and Alice his wife, daughter and heir of Robert de
Manynghame, come here into Court and acknowledge that they hold of the
lord a messuage and a cottage and 8 acres of land by knight service by
homage and fealty and suit of court every three weeks, rendering
therefrom yearly 2s. at the usual terms; and they give to the lord 4s.
for relief.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: Fine, 1/2 mark.]

William Iveson came into Court and made fine with the lord by 1/2 mark
for licence to exercise the trades of tanner and shoemaker until
Michaelmas next. Pledge, William son of Hugh the Bailiff.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: [m. 31.]]

Court holden at Bradford the day and year aforesaid.[108]

[Sidenote: Leyrwite.]

Agnes Chilyonge of Manningham, the lord's bondwoman, came here in Court
and made fine of 12d. with the lord for her leyrwite[109]; pledge,
William Walker; and the fine is not more because she is very poor and
has nothing.

[Sidenote: [m. 32.]]

Court holden at Bradford on Friday next before the feast of the Nativity
of St. John the Baptist, 28 Edward III.[110]

[Sidenote: Fine, 20s.]

John Abbot, William son of Henry de Allerton, John Dughti, Robert de
Oldfeld, and Adam de Oldfeld, who mainprised[111] for the aforesaid John
Abbot to keep the peace towards all persons and specially towards Roger
Fairegh, under a penalty of 10l. to be paid to the lord Duke, now,
because the aforesaid John Abbot beat and evilly entreated the aforesaid
Roger Fairegh, on account whereof the aforesaid penalty of 10l. ought to
be levied from the aforesaid John Abbot and his mainpernors,[112]
because the express cause for which the aforesaid penalty should be
rightly levied is now come to pass; nevertheless, the aforesaid lord
Duke, mindful that they are all his bondmen, and regarding their
poverty, has granted of his special grace that the aforesaid John Abbot
and his mainpernors may make fine of 20s. for the aforesaid 10l.
forfeited, to be paid at Michaelmas next; and each of them is the
others' pledge.

[Sidenote: Merchet].

Roger son of Roger de Manynghame has made fine of 1/2 mark for the
merchet of Cecily his wife, the lord's bondwoman; pledge, Thomas de
Manynghame.

[Sidenote: Merchet.]

Thomas Gabriell has made fine of 1/2 mark in like manner for the
merchet[113] of Maud his wife, the lord's bondwoman; pledge, Thomas de
Tiresale.

[Sidenote: Fine, 6d.]

Thomas de Tiresale has made fine of 6d. with the lord for licence to
have John son of Roger Childyong, the lord's bondman, in his service
until Michaelmas next, so that he then render the aforesaid John to the
lord's bailiffs, etc.

[Sidenote: Chevage.]

Agnes daughter of Adam atte Yate, the lord's bondwoman, has made fine
for her chevage[114], for licence to dwell wheresoever she will, to wit,
6d. to be paid yearly at Michaelmas and Easter in equal portions;
pledge, Robert atte Yate.

[Sidenote: Distrain.]

It is presented by Roger Judson, Thomas son of Roger, Thomas Gabriel,
Adam del Oldfeld, Robert de Oldfeld, and John atte Yate, that Cecily de
la More,[115] the lord's bondwoman, has been violated by John Judson;
therefore let her be distrained to make fine therefor with the lord.

[Sidenote: Distrain.]

Further, it is presented that Isabel daughter of William Childyong, the
lord's bondwoman, has married one William Cisson, a free man, without
licence. And Alice daughter of John Gepson, the lord's bondwoman, has
married one William del Hale, a free man, at Beston, without licence;
therefore let them be distrained to make fine with the lord for their
merchet, etc.

[Sidenote: Inquest.]

Let inquest be made touching the sons and daughters of William del
Munkes, who dwell at Darthington and are the lord Duke's bondmen and
bondwomen of Bradford, etc.

[Sidenote: Arrest.]

Further, it is presented that Alice daughter of William Childyong, the
lord's bondwoman, dwells at York; therefore let her be taken, etc.

Sum of this Court:--35s. 3d.        {Merchets, 13s. 4d.
Thereof further for chevage, 6d.    {Perquisites, 21s. 11d.

[Sidenote: [m. 45 d.]]

Court holden at Bradford on Wednesday, 12 December, 32 Edward III
[1358].

[Sidenote: Day given under a penalty.]

Again Anabel del Knoll has a day, as above,[116] to rebuild a house on a
plot of land which she holds of the lord at will, and under the same
penalty as in the Court preceding.

[Sidenote: Arrest bondmen.]

It is ordered, as many times before, to take William son of Richard
Gilleson, Roger son of William del Mersh, dwelling with John de Bradlay,
Thomas son of John atte Yate, William son of William Childyong (in
Pontefract), Alice daughter of John atte Yate (in Selby), Alice daughter
of William Childyong (in Methelay), and William son of William
Childyong, the lord's bondmen and bondwomen of his lordship here, etc.,
who have withdrawn without licence, and to bring them back hither until
[they make fine for their chevage].

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: [m. 46.]]

[Sidenote: Mercy, 4d.]

[Sidenote: Without a day.]

Roger son of Roger makes plaint of Alice de Bollyng [in a plea] of
trespass, pledge to prosecute, William Walker, to wit, that she has not
made an enclosure which she is bound to make between his holdings and
her own holdings in Mikelington, so that for lack of enclosure there
divers cattle entered and fed off his corn, to wit, his rye and oats and
grass, to his damages of 10s. And the aforesaid Alice defends and says
that the aforesaid Roger, and not she, is bound to make an enclosure
there, and hereon she puts herself upon the country. But the jurors
hereupon elected, tried and sworn, say on their oath that the aforesaid
Roger is bound to make the aforesaid enclosure between the aforesaid
holdings. And therefore it is awarded that the aforesaid Roger be in
mercy for his false claim, and that the said Alice go without a day.

[Sidenote: Mercy, 2s.]

It is presented by the parker that William Walker (6d.) with 11 beasts,
Roger de Manyngham (4d.) with 3 beasts, John de Gilles (2d.), Thomas
Staywal (2d.) with one beast, Roger Megson (2d.) with one beast, Denis
Walker (2d.), Richard Wright (4d.) with 2 beasts and William Coke (2d.)
with a horse, have fed off the grass of the lord's wood in Bradfordbank;
therefore they are in mercy.

[Sidenote: Mercy, 12d.]

Again it is presented that William Notbroun (6d.) and Adam Notbroun
(6d.) with their cattle have broken down the hedge around the lord's
wood, and with the said cattle have fed off the grass of the lord's
wood; therefore they are in mercy.

[Sidenote: Mercy, 10d.]

Again it is presented that Richard Milner of Idel (6d.), Richard Baillif
(2d.) and William Smyth of Caleshill (2d.) have carried millstones over
the lord's soil here without licence; therefore they are in mercy.

[Sidenote: Fine, 26s. 8d.]

[Sidenote: Chevage, 2s.]

Again it is presented by John de Denholm, John Judson, Adam Dikson,
Robert del More, Thomas de Chellowe, Hugh Barn, Robert atte Yate, John
atte Yate, Richard Curtays, John Rous, Roger Johanson and John de
Gilles, that William Tomse, the lord's bondman, dwelling in Moreton by
York, Roger de Stanbiri, the lord's bondman, dwelling in Wirkley, and
John Bonde, dwelling in Sighelesden, and John son of Roger son of
William del Mersh, dwelling with John de Bradlay, the lord's bondmen
here, have withdrawn without licence; and hereupon order was made to
take them all, so that they be [here] until, etc. And the aforesaid
William Tomse and Roger de Stanbiri were taken and were brought before
the steward at Pontefract on Saturday next after the feast of the
Circumcision of the Lord. And the aforesaid William Tomse there made
fine of 26s. 8d. before the said steward, to wit, in order to have his
goods at the steward's will,[117] to be paid at the feasts of St.
Peter's Chains and St. Michael next by equal portions. And also the
aforesaid William made fine for chevage, to wit, a fine of 2s. to be
paid yearly at the feasts of Whitsunday and St. Martin in Winter by
equal portions; and William Cooke of Brotherton became his pledge as
well for his yearly chevage as for his other fine for his said goods.
And Roger de Stanbiri likewise on the same day was brought before the
aforesaid steward at Pontefract and made fine of 20s. to have his goods
at the steward's will, to be paid at the terms of Easter and Michaelmas
next; and also the aforesaid Roger made fine of 12d. for his chevage, to
be paid yearly at the terms aforesaid; and Thomas Dantrif became his
pledge as well for his yearly chevage as for his fine aforesaid. And it
was granted to the same William and Roger that they may stay outside the
lordship here in the places where they were staying before, and that too
at the lord's will, for their chevages aforesaid, to be paid yearly, as
is aforesaid.

[Sidenote: Fine, 20s.]

[Sidenote: Chevage, 12d.]

[Sidenote: Take bondmen.]

And order is made to take all the other bondmen named above, because
they come not, and to bring them back hither to their nests until,
etc.[118]

       *       *       *       *       *

Sum of this Court:--51s. 9d., the whole perquisite. Further from chevage
as above:--3s. a year to be paid at the terms as above.

[Footnote 106: December 12, 1349, the year of the Black Death. The
monotonous death roll is noteworthy.]

[Footnote 107: _Sc._ the inheritance cannot descend.]

[Footnote 108: Monday before May 1, 1354.]

[Footnote 109: Fine on giving birth to an illegitimate child.]

[Footnote 110: Friday before June 24, 1354.]

[Footnote 111: _i.e._ Became sureties.]

[Footnote 112: _i.e._ Sureties.]

[Footnote 113: _i.e._ Fine upon marriage.]

[Footnote 114: _i.e._, head-money, a fine paid yearly by bond-tenants
dwelling away from the manor.]

[Footnote 115: _Interlined above_ Cecily _is_ Roger Judson.]

[Footnote 116: Anabel has persistently refused to rebuild the house
during the last six years; she discharges her obligation two years later
[m.50].]

[Footnote 117: _i.e._ In order to retain his own possessions during the
steward's good pleasure. In law a bondman's goods belong to his lord.]

[Footnote 118: _cf._ Bracton, _De Legibus Anglie, ff. 6 b. and 7._
"Serfs are under the power of their lords, nor is the lord's power
loosed so long as they abide in villeinage, waking and sleeping, whether
they hold land or not. Moreover, if they are not abiding in villeinage,
but wandering abroad through the country, going and returning, they are
always under the power of the lords, so long as they return; and when
they have lost the habit of returning, they begin to be runaways, after
the likeness of tame stags. Moreover, if when they are abroad as
merchants or wage-earners they pay chevage at fixed times ... and so
long as they pay chevage, they are said to be under the power of the
lords, and the lord's power is not loosed. And when they cease to pay
they begin to be fugitives ... and ought to be pursued forthwith." And
_ibid. f._ 26. "It was said in the King's court before the justices of
the Bench at Westminster by John de Metingham and his fellows, justices
there, that if a bondman born and bred shall be a runaway ... and shall
have returned and be found on the bond estate where he was born, and be
taken there by his true lord or his ministers as a bird in its nest, and
this be proved, if such a man venture to deny it in the King's court, he
shall be a serf for ever."]


3. DEED ILLUSTRATING THE DISTRIBUTION OF STRIPS [_Ancient Deeds_, B
4397], 1397.

To all Christ's faithful to whom the present writing shall come, Morgan
Gogh, greeting in the Lord. Know ye that I have demised, granted and by
this my present writing indented confirmed to John Druwere a cottage
with a curtilage situate in Modbury between the cottage of John Janekyns
on the east side and the tenement of Thomas Cobbe on the west side, and
three acres, one rood of arable land lying in the fields of Modbury,
whereof one acre lies in Brokeryg between the lord's land on either
side, one acre in Totecombe between the lord's land and the land of
Thomas Cobbe, three roods in Brokeryg between the lord's land and the
land of William Cockes, a half acre there between the land of Thomas
Cobbe and the land of Ralph Smale, and a half acre of meadow lies in
Sturtilmede between the meadow of Gilbert Scolemaystre on either side,
with pasture for one plough-beast and two draught-beasts in common;
which land, meadow and pasture John Pipere lately held for term of his
life; to have and to hold all the aforesaid cottage with the curtilage,
land, meadow, and pasture, to the aforesaid John for term of his life,
of me and my heirs or my assigns freely, quietly, well and in peace,
rendering therefor yearly to the aforesaid Morgan and his heirs or his
assigns 3s. 4d. sterling at the four principal terms of the year by
equal portions for all services, saving the royal service, and doing
suit to my court yearly upon reasonable summons.... Nor shall it be
lawful for the aforesaid John to demise to any man the said cottage,
with the curtilage, land, meadow and pasture, as well in parcels as in
whole, during his life, under penalty of loss of the aforesaid cottage
with all its appurtenances.... In witness whereof the parties aforesaid
have interchangeably set their seals to these indentures. These
witnesses:--Richard Pokeswell, Thomas Wodham, Robert Grey, John Hunte,
John Iryssh and many others. Given at Modbury on Thursday next after
Michaelmas, 21 Richard II.


4. REGULATION OF THE COMMON FIELDS OF WIMESWOULD [_Hist. MSS. Com.,
Middleton MSS., p. 106_], _c._ 1425.

For neat [_i.e._ cattle] pasture we ordain Orrow and Breches, Woldsyke
and Wylougbybroke, for to be broken[119] on Crowchemesseday [14
September]; and whoso break this, every man shall pay for each beast
that may be taken in any other several pasture a penny to the church;
therefor to go a sevennightday [_i.e._, to endure for a week].

Also, for the neat pasture, after that be eaten, all the wheatfield, to
wit, Hardacre field namely, save Strete headlands, where they may not go
for destroying of corn; this for to endure another sevennightday under
the pain beforesaid.

Also, on Holy Thursday eve we ordain the commons of the Peasfield for
horses to be broken, and no other beasts to come therein. For if there
be any man that have any horse that is feeble and may not do his work
for fault of meat, and this may reasonably be known, let him relieve of
his own, so that he save his neighbour from harm, for if any man may ...
which beasts 'lose' in corn or in grass, he shall for each beast pay a
penny to the church, and make amends to his neighbour.

Also, on Whitsun eve every man [shall] break his several pasture as he
likes, and no man tie his horse on other ... his own for to be several
till Lammas, each man to eat his own, under the pain beforesaid.

Furthermore, if any man ... plough-oxen for to be relieved on his
several grass, let him tie them in his best manner or hold them in, as
other men do their horses ... on no other man's grass going to or fro
abroad, as they will pay for each beast a penny to the church and make
[amends] ... to him that has the harm.

Also, if any man tie his horse or reach on any headlands or by brookside
into any man's corn, he shall make amends to him that has the harm, and
for each foot that is within the corn pay a penny to the church.

Also if any man shall be taken at night time destroying other corn or
grass, he shall be punished as the law will, and pay 4d. to the church.

Also, all manner of men that have any pease in the field when codding
time comes, let them cod in their own lands and in no other man's lands.
And other men or women that have no peas of their own growing, let them
gather them twice in the week on Wednesday and on Friday, reasonably
going in the land-furrows and gathering with their hands and with no
sickles, once before noon and no more, for if any man or woman other
that has any peas of his own and goes into any other, for each time [he
shall] pay a penny to the church and lose his cods, and they that have
none and go oftener than it is before said, with sickle or without,
shall lose the vessel they gather them in and the cods, and a penny to
the church.

Also, no man with common herd nor with shed herd [shall] come on the
wold after grass be mown till it be made and led away, but on his own,
and then let them go all together in God's name; and if they do, each
man pay for his quantity of his beasts a certain to the church, that is
for to say, a penny for each beast.

Also, if there be any man that throws in any sheaves on any land for to
tie on his horses, he shall make a large amends to them that have the
harm, and for each foot pay a penny to the church, but on his own.
Furthermore, if any man tie his horse in any stubble and it be mown in
reasonable time [he] shall pay the aforesaid pain.

Also, if any man may be taken at nighttime in the field with cart or
with bearing of any other carriage in unreasonable time between bell and
bell [he shall] pay 40d. to the church, save as thus, if any man in peas
harvest, he and his servants, in furthering of his work and saving of
his corn, bind at morning or till it be moonshine, all other works at
nighttime except, save this.

Also, all manner labourers that dwell in the town and have commons among
us shall work harvest work and other works for their hire reasonable as
custom is, and not to go to other towns but if they have no work or else
no man speak to them, so that they may be excused, for if they do, they
shall be chastised as the law will.

Also, no man or woman that works harvest work bear home no sheaves of no
man's, but if [_i.e._ unless] they be given them well and truly, for if
it may be wist, for each sheaf that they bear home without leave [they]
shall pay a penny to the church.

Also, no man or woman glean no manner of corn that is able to work for
his meat and twopence a day at the least to help to save his neighbour's
corn; nor no other gleaners, that may not work, glean in no manner of
wise among no sheaves, for if they do, they shall lose the corn and a
penny to the church for each burden.

Also, neither common herd nor shed herd come in the wheat cornfield
till the corn be led away, nor in the peas cornfield in the same wise
till the peas be led away, and the common herd and shed herd may go
together as they should do, on pain of each beast a penny to the church.

Also, that no man take away his beasts from the common herd from
Michaelmas tide to Yule to go in the wheatfield to 'lose' the wheat, for
if any man may take any beast therein, they shall pay for each beast a
penny to the church as often as they may be taken destroying the corn,
and the herd [shall pay] his hire.

Also, if our hayward pen a flock of neat of the country, he shall take
six pence, for a flock of sheep four pence, and for each horse a penny.

And that our wold be laid in several at Candlemas, for if any herd let
his beasts come thereon after, [he shall] pay for each time four pence
to the church.

Also, whosoever has any meadows within the corns, my lord or any man
else, let make them to 'dele' them out and take a profit of them on
God's behalf, and whoso trespass, let make amends.[120]

[Footnote 119: _i.e._ Thrown open for grazing.]

[Footnote 120: This document is defective, and at the best its bucolic
English is hard to interpret.]


5. LEASE OF A MANOR TO THE TENANTS [_Cart. Rams._ II, 244], 1279.

To all Christ's faithful who shall see or hear the present writing,
William, by the grace of God Abbot of Ramsey, greeting in the Lord.

Know ye that we have demised at farm to our men of Hemingford our manor
of Hemingford from Michaelmas in the eighth year of the reign of King
Edward, son of King Henry, at the beginning of the ninth, until the end
of seven years next following, for 40l. sterling to be paid to us
therefrom yearly at the four terms, to wit, at Michaelmas 10l., on St.
Andrew's Day[121] 10l., at the Annunciation[122] 10l. and at Midsummer
10l.

Our aforesaid men shall hold the aforesaid manor with all its
appurtenances, except the gift of the church when it fall vacant, and
our fishery, and the mill, which we have kept in our hand.

Also they shall have all profits of the town except our tallages,
sheriff's aid, hundred aid, "wardpenys," and scutage of the lord the
King, and except the issues of causes which cannot be determined without
us or our bailiffs, of the issue whereof they shall have a moiety, and
except view of frankpledge[123] and the Maunde acre and the acres of the
reeve of Ramsey.

And be it known that if any customary tenant die without heir of his
body, we will demise his land and his messuage to whomsoever we will and
keep in our hand the gersum[124] arising thence.

Also no customary tenant shall make fine for relieving or marrying his
daughters without our presence, but their gersums shall be made before
us in the presence of the reeves or any of the farmers, who shall have
and collect the said money towards their farm.

Nor may the said farmers demise house or land to any stranger or one of
another's homage, without our special licence.

For we will that such gersums beyond the fixed farm be entirely paid to
us.

Moreover the said farmers have received the following stock:--

The corn grange full of corn on either side the door by the door posts
and by the beams beyond the door, and so sloping to the roof of the
granary.

They have received also the oat barn full of oats by the east door post.

The breadth of the grange was 28 feet within, the length 39 feet, and
the east end of the grange is round; the height in the middle is 19
feet; and at the side from the door to the curve of the round end the
length of the wall is 30 feet, the height 5-1/2 feet.

They have received also a heap of barley 36 feet in length, 11 feet in
breadth, 11 feet in height, and 18 feet in breadth in the middle.

Moreover they shall be quit of a serjeant[125] in autumn every year
except in the last year, in which they shall have a serjeant, by whose
view, according to the custom of the abbey, the stock shall be made up.

They shall also be quit of our yearly lodging due, except that as often
as we shall come there they shall find for us salt, straw and hay
without an account.

And at the end of the seven years they shall render to us the aforesaid
manor with the stock with which they received it.

Also they shall give back the land well ploughed twice.

And be it known that the fruits which were then in the barn ought to be
counted for the first year, because they were of our stock.

In witness of which demise of the land and the manor we have caused our
seal to be set to this present writing.[126]

[Footnote 121: November 30.]

[Footnote 122: March 25.]

[Footnote 123: In law every man was forced to be in frankpledge, that
is, to be one of a group, each member of which was responsible for the
others' good behaviour. The 'view' was a half yearly survey of such
groups, at which offences were presented and punished.]

[Footnote 124: Fine.]

[Footnote 125: _i.e._ Free from the inspection and audit of the lord's
officer.]

[Footnote 126: This document is of great interest as an instance of an
early stock-and-land lease.]


6. GRANT OF A MANOR BY A LORD TO THE CUSTOMARY TENANTS AT FEE FARM
[_Patent Roll, 6 Edward III, p. 2, m. 27_], _ante_ 1272.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. We have inspected a writing
which Richard, sometime earl of Cornwall, made to his customary tenants
of his manor of Corsham in these words:--

To all to whom the present writing shall come, Richard, earl of
Cornwall, greeting. Know all of you that we have demised and granted and
by our present writing confirmed for us and our heirs to all our
customary tenants of our manor of Corsham all our manor of Corsham, with
the rents, demesnes, meadows, feedings and pastures to the said manor
pertaining, saving to us a third part of the meadow of Myntemede, which
third part the said customary tenants shall mow, carry and cock at their
own costs, saving also to us the site of our fishpond, our parks, our
warren, pleas, perquisites and all escheats which can escheat to us or
our successors; to have and to hold to the said customary tenants and
their successors of us and of our heirs for ever, for 110 marks to us
and our heirs or assigns yearly to be paid to our bailiff in the said
manor at two terms of the year, to wit, on the octave of Easter 55 marks
and on the octave of Michaelmas 55 marks, for all services and demands
to us or to our heirs or assigns belonging, saving to us all the things
aforenamed. And we will that our said customary tenants for ever be quit
of tallage and view of frankpledge and all other customs and services to
us or to our heirs pertaining. Our aforesaid customary tenants, however,
have granted for them and their successors that, if they keep not this
covenant according to the form of the present writing, all their
tenements which they hold of us shall revert to us and our heirs without
any contradiction, if it be through them that the form of this writing
be not kept. We will also and we grant that if any of our said customary
tenants of our said manor of Corsham be rebellious, contravening the
form of this writing, our bailiff for the time being shall have power to
distrain him by lands and chattels to observe more fully all the things
abovesaid according to the tenour of this writing. And in witness
thereof we have caused our seal to be set to this writing. These
witnesses:--Sir Richard de Turry, Sir Sampson de la Bokxe, Sir Henry
Crok, Sir Philip de Eya, Walter Galun, then bailiff, Martin de Hortham,
Sir Gilbert, then prior of Corsham, Richard de Cumberwell, Ralph, then
vicar of Corsham, and others.[127]

And we, ratifying and approving the demise, grant and confirmation
aforesaid, grant and confirm them for us and our heirs, as far as in us
lies, to the aforesaid customary tenants and their successors, as the
writing aforesaid reasonably testifies, and as they now hold the manor
aforesaid with the appurtenances, and they and their ancestors and
predecessors have held that manor hitherto, and have reasonably used and
enjoyed the liberties aforesaid, saving to us a third part of the said
meadow of Myntemede and the site of the fishpond, the parks, warren,
pleas, perquisites and all escheats abovesaid, as is aforesaid. In
witness whereof, etc. Witness the King at Woodstock, 1 July. By a fine
of 5 marks. Wilts.

[Footnote 127: The date of the original deed must be earlier than 1272,
in which year the earl died.]


7. LEASE OF MANORIAL HOLDINGS [_Fine Roll, 10 Edward III, m. 7_], 1332.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. We have inspected a writing
which John late earl of Cornwall, our brother, now deceased, made in
these words:

John, son of the illustrious King of England, earl of Cornwall, to all
and singular who shall see or hear the present writing indented,
greeting in the Lord. Know ye that, having regard to the no small
decrease and decay of rents and farms pertaining to our manor of Kirton
in Lindsey in times past, for that tenants of escheated tenements in the
same manor, having no estate of the same tenements save from year to
year or at least at the will of the lords, our predecessors there, have
made no outlay or the least which they could on the maintenance of the
buildings on the same tenements; and wishing to raise again the
aforesaid rents and farms as much as we can for our advantage; we have
granted for us and our heirs and by our present writing have demised to
John of Westminster and Emma his wife and Thomas, son of the same John
and Emma, those two parts of all those tenements with the appurtenances
in the town of Kirton aforesaid which the same John before the making of
this writing held of us during our pleasure, as of an escheat formerly
in our hand of the tenements which were sometime of Thomas of Bromholm;
to have and to hold to the same John and Emma his wife and Thomas, son
of the same John and Emma, and each of them that lives the longer, for
their whole life, of us and our heirs, rendering therefrom yearly to us
and our heirs 100s. sterling at the feasts of Easter and Michaelmas by
equal portions; and we, the aforesaid earl, and our heirs will warrant
the aforesaid two parts of the tenements aforesaid with their
appurtenances to the aforesaid John and Emma his wife and Thomas, son of
the same John and Emma, for their whole life, as is aforesaid, against
all people for the aforesaid rent. In witness whereof we have thought
fit to set our seal to this writing. These witnesses:--Sirs John de
Haustede, Thomas de Westone and William de Cusancia, knights, Sir
William de Cusancia, rector of the church of Wakefield, our treasurer,
and William de Munden, our clerk and secretary, and others. Given at
York on Tuesday next after the feast of All Saints in the 6th year of
the reign of King Edward the Third after the Conquest, our dearest
brother.

And we, ratifying and approving the demise aforesaid, grant and confirm
it for us and our heirs, as much as in us lies, as the writing aforesaid
reasonably testifies, willing and granting for us and our heirs that the
same John, Emma and Thomas have and hold the tenements aforesaid with
the appurtenances for the whole life of each of them by the aforesaid
service of rendering to us and our heirs yearly the said 100s. according
to the tenour of the writing of the same earl abovesaid. In witness
whereof etc. Witness the King at Leicester, 1 October.

By the King himself.


8. AN AGREEMENT BETWEEN LORD AND TENANTS [_Duchy of Lancaster, Misc.
Bks., 5, f. 103_], 1386.

_Warkington._--At the view of frankpledge holden there on 20 October, 10
Richard II., it was granted to all the lord's tenants in the presence of
John Mulso, Nicholas Lovet, Edmund Bifeld, Stephen Walker of Keteryng
and others there present, that if it pleased the lord they might hold
certain bond lands and tenements at a certain rent and service, as
follows, during a term of six years next after the date abovewritten,
the term beginning at Michaelmas last past; to wit, that each tenant of
a messuage and a virgate of bond land shall render to the lord 18s.
yearly at four terms, to wit, at the feasts of St. Edmund the King and
Martyr,[128] Palm Sunday, the Nativity of St. John the Baptist,[129] and
Michaelmas, by equal portions, and shall do two ploughings a year at
what times of the year he shall be forewarned by the bailiff of the
manor for the time being, and shall work in "le Keormede" as he used
before, save that the lord shall find him food and drink for the ancient
customs, that is, for half a sheep and for each scythe 1/2d., and so he
shall reap in Autumn for two days, to wit, one day with two men and
another day with one man, at the lord's dinner[130]; he shall give 4d.
for a colt if he sell it, he shall pay heriot if he die within the term,
and he shall make fine for marrying his daughters and for his sons
attending school, and for "leyre-wite" as he used before.[131]

[Footnote 128: November 20.]

[Footnote 129: June 24.]

[Footnote 130: _i.e._ The lord providing dinner.]

[Footnote 131: The lord here is the Abbot of Bury St. Edmunds.]


9. COMPLAINTS AGAINST A REEVE [_Court Rolls_, 179, 4, _m._ 1d.],
1278.[132]

_Elton._--St. Clement's Day.[133] Michael the Reeve complains of Richer
son of Jocelin and Richard the Reeve and his wife that when he was in
the churchyard of Elton on the Sunday next before the feast of All
Saints[134] in this year, there came the aforesaid Richer, Richard and
his wife and insulted him with vile words before the whole parish,
charging him with having collected his own hay by the labour services
due to the lord the Abbot [of Ramsey], and with having reaped his own
corn in autumn by the boon-works done by the Abbot's customary tenants,
and with having ploughed his land in Everesholmfeld with ploughs
"booned" from the town, and with having released to the customary
tenants their works and carryings on condition that they demised and
leased their lands to him at a low price, and with having taken gifts
from the rich tenants that they should not become tenants at a money
rent, and with having put the poor tenants at a money rent.[135] And the
aforesaid Richard and Richer are present and deny, etc. and ask for an
enquiry by twelve jurors. Who come and say that the said Michael is
guilty of none of the charges. Therefore the said Richard and Richer
shall satisfy him, and for the trespass shall be in mercy; Richard's
fine, 2s., pledge William son of James; Richer's fine, 12d., pledge,
Jocelin. And the damages are taxed at 10s. to be received from Richard
the Reeve, which sum Michael has released except 2s.

[Footnote 132: Printed in Selden Society Publications, II., 95.]

[Footnote 133: November 23.]

[Footnote 134: November 1.]

[Footnote 135: The commutation of services for rent was not always
popular.]


10. AN EVICTION FROM COPYHOLD LAND [_Chancery Proceedings, Early_, 16,
376], _temp._ Henry IV-Henry VI.

To the most reverend father in God, the Archbishop of Canterbury,
Chancellor of England.

Beseecheth lowly your poor bedefolks, Elizabeth Baroun, Harry Baroun and
Richard Baroun, which be the King's tenants, that whereas the said
Elizabeth was possessed and seised of a messuage and 4 acres of land in
the town of Great Hormead in the shire of Hertford, and the said
messuage and land held to her and to her heirs at the will of my lord of
Oxford as of his manor of Hormead in the same shire by copy of court
roll after the custom of the said manor, there hath one Harry Edmond,
farmer of the said manor, without cause reasonable and contrary to the
custom of the said manor, entered in the said messuage and land and put
out the said Elizabeth, and certain goods and chattels of the said
Elizabeth, Harry and Richard, to the value of 40 marks in the said house
being, seized, and it withholdeth, and over that the said Harry Edmond
with his adherents daily lie in wait to beat and slay the said Harry and
Richard, your beseechers, so that they dare not well abide in their
houses neither go about their husbandry, to their uttermost destruction
and undoing for ever, without succour of your gracious lordship: Please
your good grace to consider the premises and that your said beseechers
have no remedy at the Common Law, to grant a writ directed to the said
Harry Edmond, commanding him to appear before you at a certain day upon
a certain pain by you to be limited, to be examined of the premises, and
thereupon to do that good faith and conscience require, and that for the
love of God and in way of charity.

       *       *       *       *       *

This is the answer of Harry Edmond to the bill of Elizabeth Baron, Harry
Baron and Richard Baron, in the Chancery.

First, whereas it is surmised by the said Elizabeth that she was
possessed and seised of a messuage and four acres of land in the town of
Great Hormead in the shire of Hertford, and the said messuage and land
held to her and to her heirs at the will of my lord of Oxford as of his
manor of Hormead in the same shire by copy of court roll after the
custom of the said manor, and that the said Harry Edmond, farmer of the
same manor, without cause reasonable and contrary to the custom of the
said manor, entered into the said messuage and land and put out the said
Elizabeth: The said Harry saith that the said messuage and land be
holden of my said lord of Oxford bondly at the will of my said lord as
of his said manor by the services of three shillings and halfpenny of
yearly rent and by a certain service called the common fine, as it
falleth more or less after the entries and ... of the tenants of the
said manor by the custom of the said manor, by cause whereof the said
Harry with one Thomas Denys, under-steward of the court of the said
manor, by the commandment of my said lord of Oxford entered into the
said messuage and land, after which entry my said lord let the said
messuage and land to the said Harry for term of years, by virtue of
which lease he [entered] the said messuage and land, as lawful is for
him, which matter the said Harry is ready to prove as this Court will
[award], and prayeth as for that to be dismissed out of this Court.

[And as for t]he seizing and withholding of certain goods and chattels
of the said Elizabeth, Harry Baron and Richard, to the value of [40
marks, as is sur]mised by the said bill, the said Harry Edmond saith
that the seizing and withholding of the said goods and chattels is a
matter determinable at the Common Law, and not in this Court of the
Chancery. Wherefore as for that he prayeth to be dismissed out of this
Court.

And as for the declaration of the said Harry as for the said goods and
chattels, the said Harry saith that he never seized nor withheld the
said goods and chattels neither no parcel thereof, as it is surmised by
the said bill, which matter the said Harry Edmond is ready to prove as
the Court will award, if the Court rule him thereto.

And as for the lying in await surmised by the said bill the said Harry
Edmond saith that the said lying in await is matter determinable by the
Common Law and not in this Court of the Chancery, wherefore as for that
matter he prayeth to be dismissed out of this Court of the Chancery.
But, for the declaration of the said Harry Edmond in that matter, the
said Harry Edmond saith that he never lay in await neither to beat nor
to slay the said Harry Baron nor the said Richard, as they surmise by
their said bill, which matter the said Harry Edmond is ready to prove as
this Court will award, if the said Court will rule him thereto.[136]

[Footnote 136: This case illustrates first, the protection coming to be
given by Chancery to villein or customary tenure, and second, the
growing desire of lords to substitute leasehold for copyhold, a process
which began at least as early as the beginning of the fourteenth
century; see No. 7 above, and Part II., Section I.; _cf._ also Savine,
in E.H.R. xvii., 296.]


11. STATUTE OF MERTON, C. 4 [_Statutes of the Realm, Vol. I, p. 2_],
1235-6.

Also, because many great men of England, who have enfeoffed their
knights and freeholders of small tenements in their great manors, have
complained that they cannot make their profit of the residue of their
manors, as of wastes, woods, and pastures, though the same feoffees have
sufficient pasture, as much as belongs to their tenements: it is thus
provided and granted, that when any persons so enfeoffed bring an
assize of novel disseisin touching their common of pasture, and it is
acknowledged before the justices that they have as much pasture as
suffices for their tenements, and that they have free entry and issue
from their tenements into their pasture, then they shall be content
therewith; and they of whom they had complained shall go quit of the
profit which they have made of the lands, wastes, woods, and pastures;
and if they allege that they have not sufficient pasture, or sufficient
entry and issue as belongs to their tenements, then the truth shall be
inquired by assize; and if it be acknowledged by the assize that their
entry or issue is in any way hindered by the same [deforcers] or that
they have not sufficient pasture and sufficient entry and issue, as is
aforesaid, then shall they recover their seisin by view of the jurors:
so that by their discretion and oath, the plaintiffs shall have
sufficient pasture and sufficient entry and issue in form aforesaid, and
the disseisors shall be in the mercy of the lord the King, and shall
yield damages, as they ought to have rendered before this provision. And
if it be acknowledged by the assize that the plaintiffs have sufficient
pasture with free and sufficient entry and issue, as is aforesaid, then
the others may make their profit lawfully of the residue, and go quit of
that assize.


12. AN ENCLOSURE ALLOWED [_Bracton's Note-Book_, III, 212, _No._ 1198],
1236-7.

The assize comes to recognise if Elias of Leyburn unjustly etc.
disseised Wymar of Leyburn of common of his pasture pertaining to his
free tenement in the same town of Leyburn after, etc.[137]

And Elias comes and says that an assize ought not to be made thereof
because that pasture belonged to five lords, and a covenant was made
between the lords that each should make his profit of his part, and by
this covenant he caused his part to be tilled, and thereof he put
himself on a jury.

The jurors say that the wood was at one time common, in such wise that
there were five sharers who had the wood common, and afterwards by their
consent a partition was made between them that each should have his part
in severalty, and it was granted that each might assart[138] his part
and grow corn, saving however to each of them common of herbage after
the corn was carried, and most of them assarted their part, but the wood
whereof complaint is made was not then assarted, and because he to whom
the wood pertains has now assarted a part, the said Wymar has brought a
writ of _novel disseisin_. But because it is acknowledged that the wood
was thus partitioned among the sharers, it is decided that the aforesaid
Elias has not disseised him, and so Elias is dismissed _sine die_ and
Wymar is in mercy. And it shall be lawful for each sharer to assart his
wood, saving to each of them common of his pasture after the corn and
hay is carried.

[Footnote 137: _sc._ The King's last return from Brittany.]

[Footnote 138: Bring into cultivation.]


13. AN ENCLOSURE DISALLOWED [_Bracton's Note-Book_, III, 211, _No._
1196], 1236-7

The assize comes to recognise if Robert de Fislake unjustly etc. raised
a dyke in Woodhouse to the injury of the free tenement of Adam de
Bladewrthe in the same town after etc.[139] Whereon Adam complains that
Robert caused to be enclosed a meadow lying near his land, in which he
ought to have common of herbage after hay-carrying, and that it ought to
lie to pasture every third year with the fallow, wherefore he says that
the dyke is to his injury and puts himself on a jury thereof. And Robert
does the like.

The jurors say that the aforesaid Adam always used to have common in
that meadow and in the land of Robert by that meadow after the corn and
hay were carried, and when the land lay fallow, then in both meadow and
fallow, and Robert caused the meadow to be enclosed so that Adam can
have no entry to that pasture. And so it is awarded that the dyke be
thrown down, and the meadow made as it should be, so that the aforesaid
Adam have entry and issue, and that Robert be in mercy, etc.

[Footnote 139: _sc._ The king's last return from Brittany.]


14. A VILLEIN ON ANCIENT DEMESNE DISMISSED TO HIS LORD'S COURT
[_Bracton's Note-Book_, III, 65. _No._ 1030], 1224.

The assize comes to recognise if Bartholomew son of Eustace unjustly and
without a judgment disseised William son of Henry of his free tenement
in Pilton after the last, etc. And Bartholomew comes and says that the
assize ought not to be made thereof because the said William held the
tenement only in villeinage, and is his villein, and does for him all
customs such as ploughings and others, and says further that he cannot
marry his daughter save by his lord's licence etc.

And William son of Henry comes and says that he is a free man and that
he holds his tenement freely and that at another time he impleaded in
the court of the lord the King as a free man touching the aforesaid
tenement, to wit, touching the services and the like, and thereof he
brings the rolls of Sir Martin de Patteshull to warrant and likewise a
writ which the same Martin wrote with his own hand, which also was sent
to the sheriff of Rutland for the same plea, and the sheriff's clerk has
shown him the writ, etc. A day is given to hear his judgment on such a
day, etc.

On the day the court records at Westminster that the same William in the
time of King John was convicted at Bedford of owing villein customs from
that tenement, such as ploughing, reaping and many others at his own
food, and of being unable to marry his daughter or sister without
licence of his lord. And so it is decided that the assize of _novel
disseisin_ does not lie because the tenement is not free, and so William
is in mercy. And if he will, let him plead in the manor by writ of
right.


15. CLAIM TO BE ON ANCIENT DEMESNE DEFEATED [_Bracton's Note-Book_, III,
250, _No._ 1237], 1237-8.

The men of the Prior and convent of St. Swithin of Crondall, Hurstbourne
and Whitchurch, complained to the lord the King that whereas they had
been granted to the same Prior and convent and their church in pure and
perpetual alms by the ancestors of the lord the King, the Prior and
convent demanded of them other customs and services than they used to do
in the times in which they were in the hands of the aforesaid
predecessors, etc.

And Oliver the Steward and Horder come and say that they demand no other
services than the men used and ought to do, and that the lands were
never in the hands of the ancestors of the lord the King, because two
hundred years before the conquest of England they were given to the
Prior and Convent of St. Swithin and by others than Kings, to wit,
earls and others, etc., and then they owed and used to do whatever was
commanded them. But in process of time, when the priory was well nigh
destroyed by one Abbot Robert,[140] bishop Richard came and for the
profit of the Prior and convent disposed of their lands and manors in
such wise that he caused an inventory to be made of the holdings and of
the names of the tenants and their services, as well tenants in
villeinage as in frank fee, and so that he demanded no other services
than they did then and were then set forth in the inventory. Afterwards
however when the lands were in the hand of farmers at one time and at
one time in the hand of the aforesaid villeins for forty years,[141] the
farmers remitted to them certain services and customs for money. And
when the lands were in the hand of the aforesaid villeins they detained
and withheld the rent to the sum of 60s. and more, and also a great
amount of corn, and withheld a great amount of the lands contrary to the
aforesaid enrolment made by the aforesaid bishop Richard. And because
the aforesaid men acknowledge that they are villeins, as is aforesaid,
and because they cannot deny these things, they are told to do to the
Prior and convent the services and customs which they used to do. And
the lord the King will not meddle with them since they were never in the
hand of him or his ancestors, etc.

[Footnote 140: 1174-1188.]

[Footnote 141: For a similar lease to tenants see No. 5.]


16. THE LITTLE WRIT OF RIGHT [_Court Rolls_, 172, 27], 1390.

Richard by the grace of God King of England and France and Lord of
Ireland to the bailiffs of Anne, Queen of England, our beloved Consort,
of Havering atte Bower, greeting. We command you that without delay and
according to the custom of the manor of Havering atte Bower you do
(_teneatis_) full right to John de Lancastre of Hatfield Broadoak
touching 40s. of rent with the appurtenances in Havering atte Bower, of
which John Organ, citizen and mercer of London, and Margery his wife
deforce him; that we may hear no further complaint thereof for default
of right. Witness myself at Westminster the 30th day of January in the
thirteenth year of our reign.


17. VILLEINAGE ESTABLISHED [_Bracton's Note-Book_, III, 119, _No._
1103], 1225.

A jury comes by consent of the parties [to recognise] whether William
son of Henry and his ancestors held two parts of a bovate of land with
the appurtenances in Pilton in villeinage of the ancestors of
Bartholomew son of Eustace, doing these underwritten customs, to wit,
3s. 4d. a year of farm, and at Christmas 4 hens, and at the summons of
Bartholomew, between Christmas and the Purification, one feast, and
whether in Lent he ought to plough for one day at his own food, and to
harrow for one day at his own food, and on Easter day to give 20 eggs,
and in summer to plough for one day at the dinner of Bartholomew,[142]
to reap for one day at the food of Bartholomew, to wit, twice a day, and
for one day to carry his hay at the food of the same Bartholomew, and in
autumn to do boon-work for Bartholomew, with his whole household except
his wife, and for Bartholomew's loveboon to find a man at his own food,
and in winter to plough for one day at Bartholomew's dinner, and
whether, if he wish to marry his daughter or his sister, he shall make
fine with Bartholomew as best he may; or whether William or his
ancestors have held the land freely, rendering 3s. 4d. a year and doing
foreign service for all service, etc.

The jurors say that the same William and his ancestors used and ought to
do all the aforesaid customs which Bartholomew demands, to wit, from 1
bovate of land with the appurtenances, except that on Christmas day when
he renders hens he ought to eat with Bartholomew on the same day, and
furthermore that they never saw him sell a daughter or sister or give
merchet or marry, but have seen that Bartholomew sold to Ralph Cayllard
John, brother of William by the same father and mother, for 40s., and
the same Ralph did with him his will.

And so it is awarded that William is convicted of villeinage, and if he
will do the aforesaid customs, let him hold the bovate of land by the
same customs, but if not, let Bartholomew do his will with the land and
with William as with his villein, and let him be delivered to him.

[Footnote 142: _i.e._ Bartholomew providing dinner.]


18. FREEDOM AND FREEHOLD ESTABLISHED [_Bracton's Note-Book_, III, 224,
_No._ 1210], 1236-7.

The assize comes to recognise if Thomas de Sumerdeby and many others
disseised Roger Gladewine of his free tenement in Spitelgate after
etc.,[143] whereof he complains that they disseised him of 2-1/2 acres
and a toft.

And Thomas and the others come and say that the same Roger is a villein
and the tenement whereof view is made is villeinage, and thereof they
put themselves on a jury. And Roger says that he is a free man and the
tenement is free, and that his ancestors were free men and held freely,
and thereof he puts himself on a jury.

The jurors say that the aforesaid Roger holds his tenement in the same
town by 2s. a year and by two works in autumn at his lord's food, and he
shall give two hens at Christmas and eat with his lord. And questioned
if he or any of his ancestors had given merchet for marrying his
daughter, they say, No. Questioned if he had ever been tallaged, they
say, No. And the aforesaid Thomas, questioned if others of his fee do
other villein services, he says that others do all manner of villein
services. And because he does no service save the aforesaid money
payment and the services named, nor gives merchet for a daughter, nor is
tallaged, therefore it is awarded that he held freely and that he
recover his seisin, and Thomas and the others are in mercy.

[Footnote 143: _sc_. The King's last return from Brittany.]


19. A VILLEIN PLEADS VILLEINAGE ON ONE OCCASION AND DENIES IT ON ANOTHER
[_Bracton's Note-Book_, III, 364, _No._ 1411], 1220.

Hamelin son of Ralph was attached to answer Hugh de Gundevill wherefore
he brought an assize of _novel disseisin_ against the aforesaid Hugh,
his lord, touching a tenement in Pinpre, inasmuch as he is a villein and
acknowledged himself to be the villein of the aforesaid Hugh's father in
the time of the lord King John, etc. before the justices in eyre at
Sherborne, as the same Hugh says, and thereon shows that Simon de
Patteshull, Eustace de Faucumberge and others their fellows were then
justices. And that Thomas acknowledged himself to be his father's
villein, as is aforesaid, he puts himself on the record of the court and
on the rolls, etc.

And Hamelin comes and denies that he is a villein or ever acknowledged
himself to be a villein in the court of the lord the King, as Hugh says,
and thereof puts himself in like manner on the record of the court. But
he will speak the truth. He says that at that time, to wit, in the eyre
of the justices, he held certain land in villeinage which he had bought,
and then acknowledged that the land was villeinage, and specifically
denies that he ever acknowledged himself to be a villein. The rolls of
the eyre are searched, and there it is recorded that one Osbert Crede
brought an assize of _mort d'ancestor_ in respect of the death of Henry
his brother against Hamelin touching a carucate of land with the
appurtenances in Pinpre, in such wise that Hamelin answered against the
assize that it ought not to proceed because he could not gain or lose
that land, because he was the villein of Hugh de Gundevill, father of
the aforesaid Hugh. And this was found in many rolls, and when Hamelin
should have had his judgment, he absented himself and withdrew without
licence, whereupon the sheriff was ordered to have his body on such a
day, etc., to hear his judgment thereof, etc. And on that day he came
not, and the sheriff reported that he had withdrawn himself and could
not be found, wherefore the sheriff was ordered to take the whole of
Hamelin's land into the hand of the lord the King, and to keep it
safely, etc., because Hamelin withdrew himself and would not stand to
right touching Hugh's complaint of him, and to certify the justices of
what he should do thereof on such a day etc. On that day Hamelin came
not and the sheriff reported that he had taken his land into the hand of
the lord the King.

And because the court records that Hamelin acknowledged himself to be a
villein, and Hugh afterwards by the aforesaid assize of _novel
disseisin_ lost his land, it is decided that Hugh recover seisin of that
land whereon the assize was taken, and that he have Hamelin as his
villein convicted, and that the assize of _novel disseisin_ which was
taken thereof be held void, and that Hugh be quit of the mercy wherein
he was put for that disseisin. And the sheriff is ordered to make
diligent enquiry who were the jurors of that assize and to have them on
such a day, etc., to hear the judgment on them for the oath which they
made thereof. And if Hamelin held any tenement of Hugh, let Hugh do
therewith as with his own, etc.


20. AN ASSIZE ALLOWED TO A VILLEIN [_Bracton's Note-Book_, III, 527,
_No._ 1681], 1225.

The justices in eyre in the county of Essex were ordered to take a grand
assize between Thomas of Woodford, claimant, and John de la Hille,
tenant, of a virgate and a half of land with the appurtenances in
Woodford. And the said John and Thomas came before the justices at
Chelmsford and offered themselves, and the bailiff of the Abbot of
Waltham came and said both claimant and tenant were villeins, and the
tenement was the Abbot's villeinage and therefore the assize thereof
ought not to proceed. He was questioned by the tenant whether the latter
was a villein or not, and he said Yes, asserting that the said tenement
was the Abbot's villeinage.

And Thomas comes [and says] that this ought not to hurt him, because
when he impleaded the aforesaid John in the court of the lord Abbot by
writ of the lord the King, no mention was made by the Abbot nor by John
that the tenement was villeinage nor that John was a villein, but
because the Abbot failed to do him right in his court, Thomas went to
the county court and complained in the county court that the lord Abbot
had failed to do him right in his court, and the Abbot, summoned hereon,
came not, and the suit proceeded so far in the county court that the
tenant asked and obtained view of the land. Afterwards he put himself on
a grand assize as to which of the two had greater right in the aforesaid
land without any challenge of villeinage being made on the part of the
Abbot or of John. And this he sought to be allowed him.

And the Abbot's bailiff comes and denies the whole, as the court of the
lord the King should award. And he said that unknown to the Abbot and
without his court failing to do Thomas right, the suit was taken away to
the county court, and this he asked to be allowed him. And owing to the
doubt a day was given to the parties at Westminster, etc. And because
the Abbot permitted John to be impleaded in his court first and in the
county court afterwards until he put himself on a grand assize, the
Abbot not having lodged the claim which he should have made, it is
awarded that the assize proceed.


21. A FREEMAN HOLDING IN VILLEINAGE [_Bracton's Note-Book_, II, 233,
_No._ 281], 1228.

William de Bissopestun, William de Ludington and Geoffrey de
Cherlescote, knights, whom the lord the King appointed as justices to
take an assize of _novel disseisin_ which Thomas son of Adam arraigned
against Ralph, Prior of Stiffleppe, and many others, of a tenement in
Aldrestun, [were summoned] to make a record of that assize before the
justices at Westminster, and to certify the same justices how far the
process in the same assize was carried, and the same Thomas was summoned
to hear that record. And William and Geoffrey come and record that the
assize came to recognise before them if the aforesaid Prior and Thomas
son of Payn and Gilbert son of Henry [and] Osmar le Bracur unjustly and
without a judgment and after the last, etc., disseised the aforesaid
Thomas son of Adam of his free tenement in Aldredestun. And the Prior
came before them, and, being asked if he wished to say anything against
the assize, said that the assize ought not to be made thereof, because
the same tenement was his villeinage, and the same Thomas was his
villein and owed villein customs as did all others of the aforesaid
manor, such as ploughings and reapings, and he could not marry his
daughter as a freeman could.

And Thomas acknowledged that he owed certain customs at the Prior's
food, and that he owed him a rent and a fixed fine for his daughter, and
said that he was a free man and held freely of the Prior, and thereof
put himself on a jury. And hereon a jury was taken and the jurors said
that they (the aforesaid Prior and others) disseised him of his free
tenement, and after the term,[144] and the damage was taxed and
estimated at two marks.

And the Prior says that in part their record is correct, but they say
too little, because the jurors said that Thomas ought to give 12d. for
marrying his daughter, and owed many other customs; and he and his
fellows sought respite that they might have the opinion of Sir Robert de
Lexinton whether this was a free tenement from which they know what the
tenant ought to do and what not; and they could have no respite.

And the justices deny all this, and say that the jurors said nothing of
the 12d.[145] And so it was awarded that the justices made a right
judgment, and so they are quit thereof; and let the Prior be in mercy,
and proceed further against Thomas if he will.[146]

[Footnote 144: _i.e._ And after the king's last return from Brittany.]

[Footnote 145: 2d. in the text.]

[Footnote 146: On this case Bracton's comment runs: "Note the exception
opposed that the complainant was a villein because he did villein
services and customs, but fixed, and knew well what and how much.
Answer, that though he did villein customs, he was free as to his body.
And he did fixed customs and services, a thing which a villein holding
villeinage cannot do."]


22. LAND HELD BY CHARTER RECOVERED FROM THE LORD [_Bracton's Note-Book_,
III, 622, _No._ 1814], 1227.

The assize comes to recognise if William de Sufford and Reynold de
Sufford unjustly etc. disseised William the Tailor of his free tenement
in Lodenes after the last, etc. And William comes and grants the assize,
and Reynold comes not, and it is not known who he is, etc.

The jurors say that the father of the aforesaid William the Tailor was a
villein of Roger, father of the aforesaid William de Sufford, and he
held of him in villeinage all his life, and after his death Roger came
and gave to William the Tailor a messuage and an acre and a rood of land
to hold freely for a mark which William the Tailor gave to him, so that
he should hold the land for 8d. a year and for foreign service, and so
William the Tailor held the land and messuage the whole of Roger's life,
and after his decease William the Tailor came to the aforesaid William
de Sufford and to his mother and gave them 5s. to hold the land as he
held it before, and so held it until William de Sufford unjustly
disseised him. And so it is awarded that William the Tailor recover his
seisin, etc.[147]

[Footnote 147: On this case Bracton's comment runs: "Note that a
villein's son recovered by assize of novel disseisin land which his
father held in villeinage, because the villein's lord gave it to the son
by charter, even without manumission."]


23. THE MANUMISSION OF A VILLEIN [_Ancient Deeds_, A 10279], 1334.

Be it manifest to all by these presents that we, brother Robert, Abbot
of Stoneleigh, and the convent of the same place, have granted for us
and our successors that Geoffrey son of the late William Austyn of
Wottonhull be free of his body with all his brood and his chattels
hereafter for ever; so that neither we nor our successors shall be able
to demand or claim anything in him or his brood or his chattels, but by
these presents we are wholly excluded. In witness whereof we have put
our seal to these presents. Given at Stonle on Monday next after the
feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary[148] in the eighth
year of the reign of King Edward the third after the conquest.

[Footnote 148: Monday after February 2.]


24. GRANT OF A BONDMAN [_Duchy of Lancaster, Misc. Bks., 8, f._ 81 d.],
1358.

To all who shall see or hear this writing, Geoffrey, by divine
permission Abbot of Selby, and the Convent of the same place, greeting
in the Lord. Know ye that we, with the unanimous consent of out chapter,
have given, granted and by this our present charter confirmed to John de
Petreburgh John son of William de Stormesworth, our bondman, with all
his brood and all his chattels, so that the aforesaid John with all his
brood and all his chattels, as is aforesaid, remain henceforth for ever,
in respect of us and our successors, free, at large, and quit of all
bond of serfdom, so that neither we nor our successors nor any man in
our name shall be able henceforth to demand, claim or have any right or
claim or any action in the aforesaid John, his brood or his chattels, by
reason of serfdom, villeinage or bondage. In witness whereof our common
seal is appended to these presents. Given at Selby in our chapter-house
on the 10th day of the month of June, A.D. 1358.


25. IMPRISONMENT OF A GENTLEMAN CLAIMED AS A BONDMAN [_Patent Roll, 25
Henry VI, p. 2, m. 9_], 1447.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. Know ye that whereas Humphrey,
late duke of Gloucester, lately seised of the manor of Bowcombe in the
Isle of Wight in the county of Southampton in his demesne as of fee or
at least fee tail, lately, upon undue information given to him, claiming
one John Whithorne of the county of Wiltshire, gentleman, to be his
bondman belonging to him as it were to the manor aforesaid, caused the
same John to be taken by his ministers and servants, and all the lands
and tenements of the same John, to wit, 60 messuages, 6 tofts, one
dovecote, 600 acres of land, 30 acres of meadow, 6 acres of pasture and
6s. 8d. of rent with the appurtenances in the city of Salisbury,
Fisherton Anger, Middle Winterslow and West Winterslow, Woodmanton,
Burchalk, Bulbridge, Ugford St. James, Wilton, Foulston, Barford St.
Martin, Fonthill Gifford, Sharnton, Ashton Gifford, Babeton, Deptford,
Wily, Alderbury and Avon, in the said county of Wilts, to be seized into
his hands, and certain goods and chattels of the same John being at
Wilton in the said county of Wilts likewise to be taken into his hands,
and the same John to be brought to the same late duke's castle of
Pembroke in Wales, where the same late duke imprisoned the same John and
detained him there in prisons so dire, in a dungeon so obscure and dark,
in such great hunger, misery of life, deprivation of food and clothes,
and imposition on the same John of imprisonment, duress and divers other
hardships and miseries, putting aside and abandoning all pity, for seven
years and more, that the same John by occasion thereof has totally lost
the sight of his eyes, miserably incurring bodily blindness for the term
of his life and other incurable infirmities, as we have learned; which
messuages, tofts, dovecote, land, meadow, pasture and rent, by and after
the death of the aforesaid late duke, have descended to us as kinsman
and heir of the same late duke: And now we, being credibly informed upon
the truth of the matter in this behalf, have learned from trustworthy
testimony that the aforesaid John has always been and is a freeman and
of free condition, never infected with the taint of villeinage, and that
all the premises, done and brought upon him so enormously and
opprobriously as well in his person as in his tenements and goods and
chattels aforesaid, as is aforesaid, were done and perpetrated unduly
and unjustly of great malice and insatiable avarice against all
conscience: We, duly weighing all and singular the premises, and wishing
due reformation of such and so great damages, oppressions, injuries and
grievances, to be made and had, as far as in us lies, of our especial
grace and of our certain knowledge and mere motion and in true execution
and due completion of justice, by the tenour of these presents have
deemed fit to remove and in fact by these presents we have removed our
hands from the messuages, tofts, dovecote, land, meadow, pasture and
rent aforesaid, with the appurtenances and with knights' fees, advowsons
of churches and other ecclesiastical benefices whatsoever, franchises,
liberties and all other things pertaining or belonging to the same, and
by these presents have restored the same John to and into those
messuages ... and by these presents we give and grant the same ... with
all and all manner of issues ... from the time of the death of the said
late duke forthcoming or received, to have and hold those messuages ...
to him, his heirs and assigns, of the chief lords of that fee by the
services therefrom due and accustomed for ever, as freely, well,
entirely, peaceably and quietly as the same John had held or occupied
the messuages ... before the seisin aforesaid made by the aforesaid late
duke or his servants or ministers.... In witness whereof, etc., Witness
the King at Westminster, 16 July.

By the King himself and of the date aforesaid by authority of
Parliament.


26. CLAIM TO A VILLEIN [_Early Chancery Proceedings_, 16, 436], _temp._
Henry IV-Henry VI.

To the most reverend father in God, the archbishop of Canterbury, and
chancellor of England.

Beseecheth meekly your poor bedeman, John Bishop, that where he late was
in his house at Hamble-en-le-Rice in the county of Southampton the 12th
day of March last past in God's peace and the King's, there came John
Wayte, Richard Newport and John Newport with thirteen other persons in
their company arrayed in manner of war, and in full riotous wise in
forcible manner there and then entered the house of your said beseecher
about midnight, and him lying in his bed took, seized and imprisoned,
and his purse with 25s. of money therein and the keys of his coffers
from him took and the same coffers opened and 28l. of his money, 2
standing cups of silver gilt, 7 flat pieces of silver, 2 masers, 6
girdles and a baselard harnessed with silver, of the goods and chattels
of William Poleyn of the value of 40l. there being in the keeping of
your said beseecher, and 5 pieces of kerseys and the stuff of household
of your said beseecher to the value of 30l. there found, took and bare
away, and him from thence the same night to Sydyngworth led and in
horrible strait prison kept by the space of two days, and from thence
him carried to a place called Spereshot's place in the same [town] and
him there in full strait grievous prison in stocks kept still by the
space of five days and other full great wrongs to him did against the
peace of the King our sovereign lord to the utter destruction of the
body of your said beseecher, which is not of power to sue his remedy by
the common law, and importable loss of his goods but if more sooner
remedy be had for him in this behalf. Please it your gracious lordship
to grant several writs to be directed to the said John Wayte, Richard
Newport and John Newport, commanding them to appear before you at a
certain day by you to be limited to be examined of these premises and to
do and receive what good faith and conscience will in this behalf, and
that they moreover by your discretion be compelled to find sufficient
surety to keep the King's peace against your said beseecher and against
all the King's liege people, at the reverence of God and in the way of
charity.

  Pledges to prosecute {William Poleyn.
                       {John Grene.

This is the answer of John Wayte to a bill put against him by John
Bishop before the King in his Chancery.

The said John Wayte saith by protestation that the said John Bishop is
his villein regardant to his manor of Lee in the county of Southampton,
and he and his ancestors and all those whose estate John Wayte hath in
the same manor have been seised of the said John Bishop and of his
ancestors as villeins regardant to the said manor from the time that no
mind is, and saving to the said John Wayte and his heirs all manner
advantage to seize and claim the same John Bishop and his heirs and
their blood, all their lands and tenements, goods and chattels, and all
manner other advantage and objections of bondage of and against the said
John Bishop and his blood hereafter, by protestation that the said John
Wayte is not guilty of no matter contained in the said bill like as by
the same bill it is supposed for plea, saith, inasmuch as all the
matters of complaint contained in the said bill be matters determinable
by the common law of this land in other courts of our sovereign lord the
King, and not in this court, asketh judgment and prayeth to be dismissed
out of this court after the form of the Statute.

This is the replication of John Bishop unto the answer of John Wayte.

The said John Bishop saith that he is a free man born and of free
condition and not bondman of the said John Wayte, and that all the
ancestors of the same John Bishop from the time that no mind is have
been free men and of free condition, born within the parish of Corfe in
the county of Dorset and not within the manor of Lee in the county of
Southampton, as by divers true inquisitions hereof taken before certain
commissioners by virtue of the king's commission to them directed it
plainly appeareth, which commissions and inquisitions remaineth in this
place of record; and he saith moreover that the said John Wayte
wrongfully by great force hath taken from him his goods and chattels and
him grievously imprisoned in the manner and form declared in his bill,
and him put to such cost, loss of his good, let of his labour and
business, and other great troubles and vexations, that he is so poor and
brought to so great misery that he is not of power to sue against the
said John Wayte for remedy of the said wrongs by course of the common
law of this land. Wherefore, inasmuch as he withsaith not the matter
contained in the said bill of complaint of the said John Bishop, he
prayeth that the said John Wayte may be compelled by the rule and
discretion of this court to restore him of his said goods and to give
him sufficient damages and amends for the said trespass to him done.


27. THE EFFECT OF THE BLACK DEATH [_Duchy of Lancaster, Misc. Bks. 8, f.
57d._], 1350.

_Proxy for Parliament._--To his most excellent Prince and Lord, the most
reverend Lord Edward, by the grace of God illustrious King of England
and France and Lord of Ireland, his most humble chaplain, Geoffrey,
Abbot of the Monastery of Selby, in the diocese of York, submission and
reverence, with the bond of instant prayer to God. Since we are occupied
beyond our strength in supporting the charges incumbent on our
monastery, as well because our discreeter and stronger brethren, on whom
rested the governance of our house, have gone the way of all flesh
through the pestilence, as because our house both in decay of rents and
in lack of corn and other victuals is suffering undue disaster, and also
being hindered by other unavoidable obstacles, we are unable to be
present in person in the instant Parliament to be held on the octave of
the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary next coming, we make and
appoint by these presents our beloved in Christ Sir Thomas de Brayton,
clerk, and Hilary de Useflete, and each of them singly, our true and
lawful proctors to appear for us in your said Parliament on the said day
and place with the continuation and prorogation of the days following;
giving and granting to the same and to each of them special command in
our name to treat with you and with the rest of the prelates, magnates
and chiefs of the said realm, being in the same Parliament, on the
arduous and urgent affairs touching you and the estate and good
governance of your realm of England and other your lands and lordships,
which shall be there treated in common, and to consent to the measures
which by God's favour shall be ordained then and there by the common
council, and also to do and further all and singular other measures
which we could have done in the said Parliament, if we had been present
there in person; intending to ratify and approve whatsoever our said
proctors or any one of them shall deem fit to be done in the premises in
our name. In witness whereof our seal is affixed to these presents.
Dated, etc.


28. ACCOUNTS OF THE IRON-WORKS OF SOUTH FRITH BEFORE AND AFTER THE BLACK
DEATH [_Ministers' Accounts_, 891, 8 _and_ 9], 1345-6 and 1349-50.

The account of Thomas Judde, receiver of South Frith, from Michaelmas,
19 Edward III, to the morrow of Michaelmas following, 20 Edward III.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Sale of Wood._--[He answers] also for 188l. 4s. 6d. for wood sold in
South Frith by Sir Andrew de Bures, Walter Colpeper, and William
Lengleys, in the month of April, as appears in the particulars; and for
18l. 7s. for wood sold there by the same in the month of August, as
appears by the particulars; and for 6l. 7s. 5d. for wood blown down by
the wind, sold during the time covered by this account, as appears by
the particulars indented.

Sum:--212l. 18s. 11d.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Defect of rent._--In defect of rent of 40 acres of land sometime of
Hugh Champion in South Frith, because they are in the hand of the lady
and lie waste for lack of a tenant, 13s. 4d. a year; in defect of rent
of Thomas Springget for a smithy which lies waste and is not worked,
12d. a year; in defect of rent of a house sometime of Walter le Smyth,
because it is pulled down, and it is testified that he has nothing on
the lady's fee, 12d. a year.

Sum:--15s. 4d.

       *       *       *       *       *

The account of Thomas Judde, receiver of South Frith, from Michaelmas,
23 Edward III, to the morrow of Michaelmas following, 24 Edward III, for
the whole year.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Sale of wood._--He answers for 17l. 14d. received for wood thrown down
by the wind, as appears by the particulars indented between Walter
Colpepyr and the said receiver.

Sum:--17l. 14d.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Defect of rent._--He accounts in defect of rent of 40 acres sometime of
Hugh Campyon, because they are in the hands of the lady and lie waste in
the said wood for lack of a tenant, 13s. 4d. a year; further, in defect
of rent of Thomas Springet for a smithy in the hand of the lady, as
above, 12d.; further, in defect of rent of the house of Walter le Smyth,
as above, 12d.; further, in defect of rent of Richard atte Ware, as
above, 5s. 7d. for 8 acres 3 roods of land at Bukesworthbrom with other
parcels of land there; further, in defect of rent of Thomas Harry for 3
roods of land, as above, 4-1/2d.; further in defect of rent of William
Huchon for 6 acres of land, as above, 3s.; further, in defect of rent of
Richard Sampson for 19 acres 1 rood of land, as above, 12s. 10d.;
further, in defect of rent of Thomas Harry for two smithies, as above,
2s.; further, in defect of rent of Robert le Hore for a house, as above,
7d.; further, in defect of rent of Richard Gambon for a house, as above,
12d.; further, in defect of rent of John Coppynger for a house, as
above, 12d.; further, in defect of rent of Richard Sampson for 3 acres
of land, as above, 18d.; further, in defect of rent of William atte
Sandhelle for 20 acres of land, as above, 13s. 4d.; further, in defect
of rent of Richard Sewale for 20 acres of land, as above, 13s. 4d.;
further, in defect of rent of William Crowle and Simon de Herst for 36
acres 3 roods of land, as above, 18s. 4-1/2d.; further, in defect of
rent of Robert Smale, John Watte, Jordan Odam and William Mowyn, for 23
acres 3 roods of land, as above, 15s. 11d.; further, in defect of rent
of Walter Colpeper for 22 acres 3 roods of land, as above, 5s. 8-1/4d.;
further, in defect of rent of Walter Mody for 18 acres of land, as
above, 9s.

Sum of the ancient defect, 15s. 4d.

New defect through the pestilence this second year.

Sum:--119s. 3-1/4d. Whereof 103s. 11-1/4d. is of new defect by reason of
the pestilence.

       *       *       *       *       *


29. THE PEASANTS' REVOLT [_Assize Roll, 103, mm. 10 & 10d._], 1381.

   Pleas in the Isle of Ely before the justices appointed in the county
   of Cambridge to punish and chastise insurgents and their misdeeds, on
   Thursday next before the feast of St. Margaret the Virgin,[149] 5
   Richard II.

Inquisition taken there on the said Thursday by the oath of John
Baker[150] ... who say on their oath that Richard de Leycestre of Ely on
Saturday next after the feast of Corpus Christi in the 4th year of the
Lord the King that now is, of his own will made insurrection, gathering
to himself John Buk of Ely and many other evildoers unknown, and went
through the whole town of Ely, commanding that all men, of whatsoever
estate, should make insurrection and go with him to destroy divers
traitors whom he would name to them on behalf of the lord King Richard
and the faithful commons; and hereupon he made divers proclamations
seditiously and to the prejudice of the lord the King, whereby the
people of the same town of Ely and other townships of the isle aforesaid
were greatly disturbed and injured. Further they say that the same
Richard [de Leycestre] on Sunday following commanded John Shethere of
Ely, Elias Glovere, John Dassh, skinner, John Tylneye, wright, and John
Redere of Ely, Thomas Litstere of Ely, Richard Swonn of Ely and John
Milnere of Ely and many others of the commons there assembled, that they
should go with him to the monastery of Ely to stand with him, while he,
in the pulpit of the same monastery, should declare to them and all
others the matters to be performed on behalf of King Richard and the
commons against traitors and other disloyal men, and this under pain of
the burning of their houses and the taking off of their heads; and so
the same Richard [de Leycestre] was a notorious leader and assembler
feloniously, and committed all the aforesaid acts to the prejudice of
the crown of the lord the King. Further they say that the same Richard
on Monday next following at Ely, as principal leader and insurgent, with
the aforesaid men above named and many others unknown of his fellowship,
feloniously broke the prison of the lord Bishop of Ely at Ely and
feloniously led away divers felons there imprisoned.

And that the same Richard on the said Monday at Ely feloniously adjudged
to death Edmund de Walsyngham, one of the justices of the peace of the
lord the King in the county of Cambridge, whereby the said Edmund was
then feloniously beheaded and his head set on the pillory there, the
same being a pernicious example. And that the same Richard was the
principal commander and leader in all the felonies, seditions and other
misdeeds committed within the isle at the time aforesaid, etc.

And hereupon the aforesaid Richard was taken by the justices aforesaid
and afterwards brought before them and charged and diligently examined
touching all the felonies and seditions aforesaid, article by article,
in what manner he would acquit himself thereof; and he made no answer
thereto but proffered a protection of the lord the King granted to him
for the security of his person and his possessions to endure for one
year according to the form and effect used in the Chancery of the lord
the King; and he says that he does not intend to be annoyed or
disquieted touching any presentments made against him by the justices,
by virtue of the protection aforesaid, etc. And the aforesaid Richard
was asked if he would make any other answer to the premises under the
peril incumbent, in that the protection aforesaid is insufficient to
acquit him of the premises or of any article of the same. And hereupon
the same Richard made no further denial of any of the premises presented
against him, but said, "I cannot make further answer, and I hold myself
convicted." And because it is clear and plain enough to the aforesaid
justices that the same Richard is guilty of all the felonies and
seditions aforesaid, as has been found before the same justices in
lawful manner, therefore by the discretion of the said justices he was
drawn and hanged the same day and year, etc., and [it was adjudged] that
his lands and tenements, goods and chattels, should be forfeit to the
lord the King, as law requires. And order was made to Ralph atte Wyk,
escheator of the lord the King, that he should make due execution
thereof forthwith for the lord the King, etc. And it is to be known that
it was found before the aforesaid justices that the same Richard has a
shop in "le Bocherie" in Ely, which is worth yearly beyond reprises
10s., and chattels to the value of 40 marks, which the same Ralph seized
forthwith, etc.

Further the aforesaid jurors say that John Buk of Ely was a fellow of
the aforesaid Richard Leycestre all the time of the insurrection and
tumult at Ely in the accomplishing of all the felonies, treasons and
misdeeds, whereof the said Richard was indicted. And specially that the
same John, of his malice, at the time when Edmund de Walsyngham was
adjudged to death, feloniously came to him and feloniously snatched a
purse of Edmund attached to his tunic containing 42-1/2d., and violently
assaulted the said Edmund, dragging him to the place of his beheading,
and carried away the said money except 12d. thereof which he gave to
John Deye of Willingham, who there feloniously beheaded Edmund, for his
labour. And hereupon the aforesaid John Buk was taken and brought
forthwith before the aforesaid justices and charged touching the
premises article by article, in what manner he will make answer thereto
or acquit himself. And he says that as to all the matters touching
Edmund de Walsyngham whereof he is charged, he came with many others to
see the end of the said Edmund and to hear the cause of his death, and
not otherwise, and this by the command of divers of the said commons.
And he was asked further by whose command he came there and snatched the
purse with the money aforesaid from the said Edmund in the form
aforesaid, and he said that he believes it was by command of the devil.
And he confessed further how and in what manner he dealt with the
aforesaid purse with the money aforesaid, as was found above. And to all
other presentments made against him he made no further answer. And
because it is clear and plain enough, as well by his own acknowledgment
as by lawful finding otherwise, that the same John is guilty of all the
felonies and treasons aforesaid, therefore by the discretion of the said
justices he was drawn and hanged, etc.; and [it was adjudged] that his
lands and tenements, goods and chattels, should be forfeit to the lord
the King, as law requires. And order was made to Ralph atte Wyk,
escheator of the lord the King, that he should make due execution
thereof forthwith for the lord the King, etc., because it was found
before the aforesaid justices that he has goods and chattels to the
value of 20l., which the same Ralph seized forthwith and made further
execution, etc.

       *       *       *       *       *

[m. 10d.] _Ely._--Adam Clymme was taken as an insurgent traitorously
against his allegiance, and because on Saturday next after the feast of
Corpus Christi in the 4th year of the reign of King Richard the second
after the Conquest, he traitorously with others made insurrection at
Ely, feloniously broke and entered the close of Thomas Somenour and
there took and carried away divers rolls, estreats of the green wax of
the lord the King and the Bishop of Ely, and other muniments touching
the Court of the lord the King, and forthwith caused them to be burned
there to the prejudice of the crown of the lord the King.

Further that the same Adam on Sunday and Monday next following caused to
be proclaimed there that no man of law or other officer in the execution
of duty should escape without beheading.

Further that the same Adam the day and year aforesaid at the time of the
insurrection was always wandering armed with arms displayed, bearing a
standard, to assemble insurgents, commanding that no man of whatsoever
condition he were, free or bond, should obey his lord to do any services
or customs, under pain of beheading, otherwise than he should declare to
them on behalf of the Great Fellowship. And so he traitorously took upon
him royal power. And he came, brought by the sheriff, and was charged
before the aforesaid justices touching the premises, in what manner he
would acquit himself thereof. And he says that he is not guilty of the
premises imputed to him or of any of the premises, and hereof puts
himself on the country, etc. And forthwith a jury is made thereon for
the lord the King by twelve [good and lawful men] etc., who being chosen
hereto, tried and sworn, say on their oath that the aforesaid Adam is
guilty of all the articles. By the discretion of the justices the same
Adam is drawn and hanged, etc. And it was found there that the same Adam
has in the town aforesaid chattels to the value of 32s., which Ralph
atte Wyk, escheator of the lord the King, seized forthwith and made
further execution for the lord the King, etc.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Cambridge._--John Shirle of the county of Nottingham was taken because
it was found that he was a vagabond in divers counties the whole time of
the disturbance, insurrection and tumult, carrying lies and worthless
talk from district to district whereby the peace of the lord the King
could be speedily broken and the people disquieted and disturbed; and
among other dangerous words, to wit, after the proclamation of the peace
of the lord the King made the day and year aforesaid, the assigns[151]
of the lord the King being in the town and sitting, he said in a tavern
in Bridge Street, Cambridge, where many were assembled to listen to his
news and worthless talk, that the stewards of the lord the King, the
justices and many other officers and ministers of the King were more
worthy to be drawn and hanged and to suffer other lawful pains and
torments, than John Balle, chaplain, a traitor and felon lawfully
convicted; for he said that he was condemned to death falsely, unjustly
and for envy by the said ministers with the King's assent, because he
was a true and good man, prophesying things useful to the commons of the
realm and telling of wrongs and oppressions done to the people by the
King and the ministers aforesaid; and his death shall not go unpunished
but within a short space he would well reward both the King and his
officers and ministers aforesaid; which sayings and threats redound to
the prejudice of the crown of the lord the King and the contempt and
manifest disquiet of the people. And hereupon the aforesaid John Shirle
was brought forthwith by the sheriff before the aforesaid assigns in
Cambridge castle, and was charged touching the premises and diligently
examined as well touching his conversation as touching his tarrying and
his estate, and the same being acknowledged by him before the aforesaid
assigns, his evil behaviour and condition is plainly manifest and clear.
And hereupon trustworthy witnesses at that time in his presence, when
the aforesaid lies, evil words, threats and worthless talk were spoken
by him, were asked for, and they being sworn to speak the truth in this
behalf, testify that all the aforesaid words imputed to him were truly
spoken by him; and he, again examined, did not deny the premises imputed
to him. Therefore by the discretion of the said assigns he was hanged;
and order was made to the escheator to enquire diligently of his lands
and tenements, goods and chattels, and to make due execution thereof for
the lord the King.

[Footnote 149: July 20.]

[Footnote 150: And eleven others.]

[Footnote 151: _i.e._ The justices assigned.]



SECTION V

TOWNS AND GILDS

   1. Payments made to the crown by gilds in the twelfth century,
   1179-80--2. Charter of liberties to the borough of Tewkesbury,
   1314--3. Charter of liberties to the borough of Gloucester, 1227--4.
   Dispute between towns touching the payment of toll, 1222--5. Dispute
   with a lord touching a gild merchant, 1223-4--6. The affiliation of
   boroughs, 1227--7. Bondman received in a borough, 1237-8--8. An
   intermunicipal agreement in respect of toll, 1239--9. Enforcement of
   charter granting freedom from toll, 1416--10. Licence for an alien to
   be of the gild merchant of London, 1252--11. Dispute between a gild
   merchant and an abbot, 1304--12. Complaints of the men of Leicester
   against the lord, 1322--13. Grant of pavage to the lord of a town,
   1328--14. Misappropriation of the tolls levied for pavage, 1336--15.
   Ordinances of the White Tawyers of London, 1346--16. Dispute between
   Masters and Journeymen, 1396--17. Ordinances of the Dyers of Bristol,
   1407--18. Incorporation of the Haberdashers of London, 1448--19.
   Indenture of Apprenticeship, 1459--20. A runaway apprentice, _c._
   1425--21. Incorporation of a gild for religious and charitable uses,
   1447.


The origin and early development of towns, the emergence of gild
merchant and craft gild, the mutual relationship of the two types of
gild, and the part played by each in the evolution of municipal
self-government, present problems to which there is no simple solution.
The undoubtedly military object of many of the Saxon boroughs fails to
explain their economic development; while the possession of a market did
not lead of necessity to self-government. Often, indeed, there is little
economic difference between a large manor and a small town; the towns
pursued agriculture, and the manors engaged in industry. None the less
the early borough, with its court co-ordinate with the hundred court,
its special peace, and its market, stands out at the time of the
Conquest as a distinct variety of _communitas_, and easily became a
centre of specialised industry and privileged association.
Constitutional and economic growth proceed side by side; a measure of
liberty encourages commercial progress, and the profits of trade
purchase a larger measure of liberty.

In this section an attempt has been made to illustrate the gradual
expansion of the economic life of the town from the twelfth century
onwards. The twelfth and thirteenth centuries witnessed a great and
growing activity; craft gilds and gilds merchant were arising
everywhere, and whether licensed or unlicensed, were paying considerable
sums to the crown for privileges bought or usurped, (No. 1). The more
important boroughs were securing charters from their lords (Nos. 2 and
3), while smaller towns were struggling to win economic freedom, that is
to say, local monopoly, against serious obstacles (No. 5). The fate of a
town depended much on the lord; the king's boroughs were more favoured
than those of an earl or lesser baron, while the latter fared better
than towns in the hands of a prelate (Nos. 11 and 12). The exaction of
tolls and the claim to exemption from tolls, which prove the existence
of considerable intermunicipal trade, were a common cause of litigation.
The grant of incompatible privileges to rival communities was a source
of profit to the mediæval monarchy; the crown secured payment in hand
for the charters, and reaped the benefit of the inevitable dispute that
followed (Nos. 4 and 8). The growth of intercourse is further shown by
that curious feature of early borough development, the affiliation of
distinct groups of towns (No. 6). Nos. 7 and 10 illustrate the coveted
privileges of the freedom of a city or borough, and No. 9 the machinery
by which a citizen protected himself if his liberty were infringed in
another town. The character of tolls imposed by a town for municipal
purposes and the possibility of corrupt collectors are shown in Nos. 13
and 14. The specialisation of industry is naturally followed by a
differentiation of function, a process which develops normally in the
fourteenth century and attains a certain rigidity in the fifteenth.
Crafts begin to close their ranks, to lay down elaborate rules of
membership, of the conduct of business and the methods of manufacture,
to secure incorporation, and to strengthen their hands by establishing
disciplinary precedents in relation to the journeymen and apprentices.
The competition of the unskilled outsider is suppressed and
apprenticeship insisted on (Nos. 15 and 17), the journeyman is
restrained (No. 16), and the crafts establish a wide control over the
conditions of labour (No. 18). No. 19 is a characteristic indenture of
apprenticeship; No. 20 illustrates the tendency to invoke the central
authority, which grows in force during the fifteenth century and
culminates in the direct control exercised by the Chancellor over gild
ordinances in the sixteenth century; while No. 21 is an example of the
social religious gild, which was one of the mediæval methods of
anticipating the poor law.


AUTHORITIES

   The principal modern writers dealing with the subject of this section
   are:--Madox, _Firma Burgi_; Maitland, _Township and Burgh_;
   Merewether & Stephens, _History of the Boroughs_; Ballard, _British
   Borough Charters_; Bateson, _Borough Customs_(Selden Society); Gross,
   _The Gild Merchant_; Gross, _The Affiliation of Boroughs_ (Antiquary,
   XII.); Drinkwater, _Merchant Gild of Shrewsbury_(Salop Archæol.
   Transactions, N.S. II.); Unwin, _The Gilds and Companies of London_;
   Unwin, _Industrial Organisation in the sixteenth and seventeenth
   centuries_; Green, _Town Life in the Fifteenth Century_; Toulmin
   Smith, _English Gilds_ (Early English Text Society); Davies, _History
   of Southampton_; Hibbert, _Influence and Development of English
   Gilds_; Hudson, _Leet Jurisdiction in the City of Norwich_; Leonard,
   _Early History of English Poor Law Relief_; Denton, _England in the
   Fifteenth Century_.

   For contemporary records the student may be referred to the
   following:--Riley, _Memorials of London and London Life_; Riley,
   _Liber Albus_; Sharpe, _Calendars of Letter Books_; Stevenson,
   _Records of the Borough of Nottingham_; Bateson, _Records of the
   Borough of Leicester_; _Court Leet of the City of Norwich_ (Selden
   Society); Bickley, _The Little Red Book of Bristol_; _Rotuli
   Cartarum_(Record Commission); and the _Calendars of Patent, Close and
   Charter Rolls_(Record Office Publications).


1. PAYMENTS MADE TO THE CROWN BY GILDS IN THE TWELFTH CENTURY [_Pipe
Roll, 26 Henry II_], 1179-80.

The weavers of Oxford render account of 6l. for their gild. They have
delivered it into the treasury.

And they are quit.

The corvesers of Oxford render account of 15s. for an ounce of gold for
their gild. They have delivered it into the treasury.

And they are quit.

The weavers of Huntingdon render account of 40s. for their gild. They
have delivered it into the treasury.

And they are quit.

The weavers of Lincoln render account of 6l. for their gild. They have
delivered it into the treasury.

And they are quit.

The weavers of York render account of 10l. for their gild. They have
delivered it into the treasury.

And they are quit.

The same sheriff [of York] renders account of 2 marks from the gild of
glovers and curriers. In the treasury is 1 mark.

And they owe 1 mark.

The same sheriff renders account of 20s. from the gild of saddlers for
[customs which they exact unjustly]. In the treasury is 10s.

And it owes 10s.

The same sheriff renders account ... of 1 mark from the gild of hosiers
by way of mercy ...

And he is quit.

The citizens of Exeter render account of 40l. for the fine of a plea
touching gilds. In the treasury are 20l.

And they owe 20l.

The same sheriff [of Devon] renders account ... of 1 mark from the
borough of Barnstaple for a gild without warrant....

And he is quit.

The burgesses of Bodmin render account of 100s. for their false
statement and for their gild without warrant. In the treasury are 50s.

And they owe 50s.

The same sheriff [of Cornwall] renders account ... of 3 marks from the
burgesses of Launceston for their gild without warrant....

And he is quit.

The same sheriff [of Dorset and Somerset] renders account of 6 marks
from the borough of Wareham for a gild without warrant. In the treasury
are 3 marks.

And it owes 3 marks.

The same sheriff renders account ... of 3 marks from the borough of
Dorchester for a gild without warrant. And of 2 marks from the borough
of Bridport for the same....

And he is quit.

The same sheriff renders account ... of 20s. from Axbridge for a gild
without warrant. And of 1/2 mark from Langport for the same.... And he
is quit.

The burgesses of Ilchester [render account of] 20s. for a gild without
warrant.

The weavers of Winchester render account of 2 marks of gold for their
gild. In the treasury are 12l. for 2 marks of gold.

And they are quit.

The fullers of Winchester render account of 6l. for their gild. They
have delivered it into the treasury.

And they are quit.

The weavers of Nottingham render account of 40s. for their gild. They
have delivered it into the treasury.

And they are quit.

The weavers of London render account of 12l. for their gild. They have
delivered it into the treasury.

And they are quit.

Amercements of Adulterine Gilds in the City of London.

The gild whereof Goscelin is alderman owes 30 marks.

The gild of pepperers whereof Edward is alderman owes 16 marks.

The gild of St. Lazarus whereof Ralph le Barre is alderman owes 25
marks.

The gild of goldsmiths whereof Ralph Flael is alderman owes 45 marks.

The gild of Bridge whereof Ailwin Finke is alderman owes 15 marks.

The gild of Bridge whereof Robert de Bosco is alderman owes 10 marks.

The gild of Haliwell whereof Henry son of Godric is alderman owes 20s.

The gild of Bridge whereof Walter the Cooper is alderman owes 1 mark.

The gild of strangers (_pelegrinorum_) whereof Warner le Turnur is
alderman owes 40s.

The gild of butchers whereof William Lafeite is alderman owes 1 mark.

The gild of clothworkers whereof John Maurus is alderman owes 1 mark.

The gild whereof Odo the Watchman is alderman owes 1 mark.

The gild of Bridge whereof Thomas the Cook is alderman owes 1 mark.

The gild whereof Robert Rochefolet is alderman owes 1 mark.

The gild whereof Hugh Leo is alderman owes 1/2 mark.

The gild whereof William de Haverhill is alderman owes 10 marks.

The gild whereof Thedric Feltrarius is alderman owes 2 marks.

The gild of Bridge whereof Peter son of Alan was alderman owes 15 marks.

The gild whereof John the White is alderman owes 1 mark.


2. CHARTER OF LIBERTIES TO THE BOROUGH OF TEWKESBURY [_Charter Roll, 11
Edward III, m. 10, No.21_], 1314.

Gilbert de Clare, earl of Gloucester and Hertford, to all whom the
present letters shall come, greeting. Whereas William and Robert,
sometime earls of Gloucester and Hertford,[152] our progenitors, of
famous memory, formerly granted and confirmed in turn for them and their
heirs by their charters to their burgesses of Tewkesbury and their heirs
and successors the liberties below written:

First, that the burgesses of the borough aforesaid should have and hold
their burgages in the borough aforesaid by free service, to wit, each of
them holding one burgage should have and hold it by the service of 12d.
a year to be rendered to the same earls, and if holding more should have
and hold each of them by the service of 12d. a year together with the
service of doing suit to the court of the same earls of the borough
aforesaid from three weeks to three weeks, for all service, so that
after the decease of any of the burgesses aforesaid, his heir or heirs
should enter the burgage or burgages aforesaid, of what age soever he or
they should be, to hold the same quit of relief or heriot.

And to the same burgesses, each of them, that they might sell, pledge or
loan to other burgesses their burgage or burgages aforesaid which they
had in the same borough by purchase, at their will, without any ransom
to be made, so that those burgesses to whom such burgages were sold,
pledged or loaned, should show the charters or writings which they had
thereof before the steward of the aforesaid earls in the court of the
borough.

And if any of them should hold half a burgage, he should hold it with
the same liberty with which tenants of a whole burgage should hold and
have the same, according to the quantity of his burgage.

And that no burgess of the borough aforesaid should by reason of a
burgage or half a burgage be in any wise tallaged or make ransom of
blood or be disturbed by reason of the sale of his horse, ox or other
his chattels whatsoever, but each of them should employ his merchandise
without challenge.

And to the same burgesses, that they might make their wills and lawfully
in their wills bequeath at their pleasure their chattels and burgages
which they should hold by purchase.

And if it should happen that any of them were impoverished whereby he
must sell his burgage, he should first seek from his next hereditary
successor before his neighbours three times his necessaries in food and
clothing for the poverty of his estate, and if he should refuse to do it
for him, it should be lawful for him to sell his burgage at his will for
ever without challenge.

And to the same burgesses, that they might make bread for sale in their
own oven or that of another, and ale for sale in their own brewhouse or
that of another, save that they should keep the royal assize.

And that they might make ovens, drying-houses, hand mills without
hindrance of the earls aforesaid or their bailiffs whomsoever.

And that none of them should come without the borough aforesaid by any
summons to the hundred of the same earls of the honour of Gloucester in
the county aforesaid by reason of their burgages aforesaid.

And if a foreigner, who should not be a burgess nor the son of a
burgess, should buy a burgage or half a burgage in the same borough, he
should come to the court of the borough aforesaid next following and
make his fine for entry and do fealty.

And that all burgesses who should hold a burgage or half a burgage and
should sell bread and ale should come once at the Lawday yearly at the
Hockday and there be amerced for breach of the assize, if they ought to
be amerced, by the presentment of twelve men; so that each burgess
should answer for his household (_manupastu_), sons and tenants, unless
they should have been attached for any trespass to answer at the day
aforesaid.

And to the same burgesses, that they should be quit of toll and of
custom within the lordship of the aforesaid earls in the honour of
Gloucester and elsewhere in England, according as they used of old; so
that no foreigner should buy corn in the borough aforesaid nor put or
keep any in a granary beyond eight days, to wit, between the Gules of
August[153] and the feast of All Saints[154]; but if he did and were
convicted thereof, he should be amerced at the will of the aforesaid
earls or their bailiffs; nor after the feast of All Saints or [before]
the Gules of August should he buy corn to put and keep in a granary, nor
carry any by water without licence of the aforesaid earls or the
bailiffs of the borough aforesaid, and he should pay customs.

And that no foreigner should be received by the steward, clerk or any
other on behalf of the same earls to be within the liberty aforesaid,
unless it were testified by lawful men of the borough aforesaid, that he
were good and trusty.

And if any burgess should be out of the borough at the time of summons
of the court aforesaid and could not reasonably be forewarned, he should
not be amerced for default.

And if any foreigner should be received within the liberty of the
borough aforesaid, he should find mainpernors[155] that he would bear
himself in good manner and faithfully to the aforesaid earls and their
bailiffs, and would be tractable to the commonalty of the borough
aforesaid.

And that they, the burgesses, should be bailiffs and catch-polls[156] of
that borough as often as they should be elected hereto, at the will of
the aforesaid earls, their stewards and bailiffs, and by election of the
commonalty of the borough aforesaid from year to year.

And that the burgesses aforesaid should have common pasture for their
beasts in the common pasture of the borough aforesaid, according to
their burgages which they have in the same borough, as they have been
accustomed hitherto.

We, ratifying and approving the gifts and grants aforesaid, grant and
confirm them for us and our heirs for ever. These witnesses:--Sirs
Bartholomew de Badlesmere, Roger Tyrel, Gilbert of St. Ouen, Giles de
Bello Campo, John de Harecourt, Robert de Burs, John Tyrel, knights,
Master Richard de Clare, John de Chelmersford, clerks, and others. Given
at Rothwell in the county of Northampton, 26 April, 1314, in the seventh
year of the reign of King Edward, son of King Edward.[157]

[Footnote 152: _temp._ William I.--Stephen. Note that the privileges
here confirmed date from the first century after the Conquest.]

[Footnote 153: August 1.]

[Footnote 154: November 1.]

[Footnote 155: _i.e._. Sureties.]

[Footnote 156: Constables.]

[Footnote 157: Extracted from the charter of confirmation of Edward
III.]


3. CHARTER OF LIBERTIES TO THE BOROUGH OF GLOUCESTER [_Charter Roll,11
Henry III, p.1, m. 10_, No. 88], 1227.

Henry, King, etc., greeting. Know ye that we have granted and by this
our charter confirmed to our burgesses of Gloucester the whole borough
of Gloucester with the appurtenances, to hold of us and our heirs for
ever at fee farm, rendering yearly 55l. sterling, as they were wont to
render the same, and 10l. by tale of increment of farm, at our Exchequer
at the term of Easter and at the term of Michaelmas. We have granted
also to our burgesses of Gloucester of the merchants' gild that none of
them plead without the walls of the borough of Gloucester touching any
plea save pleas of foreign tenures, except our moneyers and ministers.
We have granted also to them that none of them suffer trial by battle
and that touching pleas pertaining to our crown they may deraign[158]
according to the ancient custom of the borough. This also we have
granted to them that all burgesses of Gloucester of the merchants' gild
be quit of toll and lastage[159] and pontage[160] and stallage[161]
within fairs and without and throughout seaports of all our lands on
this side the sea and beyond the sea, saving in all things the
liberties of the city of London, and that none be judged touching a
money penalty save according to the ancient law of the borough which
they had in the time of our ancestors, and that they justly have all
their lands and tenements and sureties and debts, whosoever owe them,
and that right be done them according to the custom of the borough
touching their lands and tenures which are within the borough, and that
pleas touching all their debts by loans which they have made at
Gloucester, and touching sureties made there, be held at Gloucester. And
if any man in the whole of our land take toll or custom from the men of
Gloucester of the merchants' gild, after he have failed to do right, the
sheriff of Gloucester or the provost of Gloucester shall take distress
thereon at Gloucester, saving in all things the liberties of the city of
London. Furthermore for the repair of the borough we have granted to
them that they be all quit of "gyeresyeve"[162] and of "scotale,"[163]
if our sheriff or any other bailiff exact "scotale." We have granted to
them these aforesaid customs and all other liberties and free customs
which they had in the times of our ancestors, when they had them well
and freely. And if any customs were unjustly levied in the time of war,
they shall be annulled. And whosoever shall come to the borough of
Gloucester with his wares, of whatsoever place they be, whether
strangers or others, shall come, stay and depart in our safe peace,
rendering right customs. And let no man disturb them touching this our
charter. And we forbid that any man commit wrong or damage or
molestation against them thereon on pain of forfeiture of 10l. to us.
Wherefore we will, etc. that the aforesaid burgesses and their heirs
have and hold all these things aforesaid in inheritance of us and our
heirs well and in peace, freely, quietly and honourably, as is above
written. We will also and grant that the same our burgesses of
Gloucester elect by the common counsel of the borough two of the more
lawful and discreet burgesses of Gloucester and present them to our
chief justice at Westminster, which two or one of them shall well and
faithfully keep the provostship of the borough and shall not be removed
so long as they be of good behaviour in their bailiwick, save by the
common counsel of the borough. We will also that in the same borough of
Gloucester by the common counsel of the burgesses be elected four of
the more lawful and discreet men of the borough to keep the pleas of the
crown and other things which pertain to us and our crown in the same
borough, and to see that the provosts of that borough justly and
lawfully treat as well poor as rich, as the charter[164] of the lord
King John, our father, which they have thereon, reasonably testifies. We
have granted also to the same burgesses of Gloucester that none of our
sheriffs intermeddle with them in aught touching any plea or plaint or
occasion or any other thing pertaining to the aforesaid borough, saving
to us and our heirs for ever pleas of our crown, which ought to be
attached by the same our burgesses until the coming of our justices, as
is aforesaid. We have granted also to the same that if any bondman of
any man stay in the aforesaid borough and maintain himself therein and
be in the merchants' gild and hanse and lot and scot with the same our
burgesses for a year and a day without claim, thenceforth he shall not
be reclaimed by his lord, but shall abide freely in the same borough.
These witnesses:--W. Archbishop of York, W. Bishop of Carlisle, H. de
Burgo, etc., W. Earl Warenne, Osbert Giffard, Ralph son of Nicholas,
Richard de Argentem, our stewards, Henry de Capella, John de
Bassingeburn and others. Dated by the hand [of the venerable father
Ralph bishop of Chichester, our Chancellor], at Westminster on the sixth
day of April in the eleventh year, etc.

[Footnote 158: Plead _or_ bring evidence.]

[Footnote 159: A toll on the load exacted at fairs and markets, and on
the lading of a ship.]

[Footnote 160: Bridge toll.]

[Footnote 161: Tolls for the erection of stalls or booths.]

[Footnote 162: A compulsory annual customary gift.]

[Footnote 163: Compulsory purchase of ale.]

[Footnote 164: Charter Roll, 1 John, m. 2.]


4. DISPUTE TOUCHING THE PAYMENT OF TOLL IN A BOROUGH [_Bracton's
Note-Book, II_, 121, No. 145], 1222.

The bailiffs of the city of Lincoln were summoned to answer the
burgesses of Beverley wherefore they permit them not to have their
liberties which they have by a charter of the lord King John, which
liberties they have used hitherto, etc.; whereon the burgesses say that
while they came through the middle of the town of Lincoln on their way
to the fair of St. Ives, the bailiffs took their pledges and their
cloths contrary to their liberty, and that they are injured and suffer
damage to the value of 60 marks, and thereof they produce their suit
etc. and proffer their charter,[165] which testifies that the King gave
to God and St. John and the men of Beverley that they should be free
and quit of toll, pontage, passage, pesage, lastage, stallage and wreck
and all other such customs, which pertain to the lord the King himself,
throughout all the king's land, saving the liberties of London, etc.;
wherefore they say that by that charter they always had quittance of the
aforesaid customs until the last fair of St. Ives.

And the mayor of Lincoln and Robert son of Eudo, bailiffs of Lincoln,
come and deny force and tort, but acknowledge indeed that they took toll
from the complainants within their town, and this they could well do,
because they have charters of King Henry, grandfather of the lord the
King, and of King Richard, by which those kings granted to them all the
liberties and free customs which they had of the ancestors of those
kings, to wit, King Edward and King William and King Henry the
grandfather, throughout the whole land of England, and all the liberties
which the citizens of London have, saving to the same citizens of London
their liberties; and thereof they put forward their charters[166] which
witness the same; wherefore they say that by those charters they have
always had the liberty of taking toll in their town and always hitherto
were in seisin of that liberty, and they crave judgment if by the
charter of the lord King John they ought to lose their liberty granted
to them by his ancestors.

And the burgesses of Beverley say that after the charter of the lord
King John they never gave toll, nay rather, they were always quit
thereof by that charter, and this they offer to prove, etc. or to make
defence that they never gave toll; and being asked if before that
charter they gave toll, they say, Yes, and crave judgment hereon and
offer to the lord the King two palfreys for an inquisition if after the
charter of King John they were always quit of the aforesaid toll, and
they are received, and so a jury was made by eight lawful citizens of
Lincoln and further by eight lawful men of the vicinage of Lincoln, and
let it come on such a day to recognise if those burgesses, when they
brought wares through the town of Lincoln, were quit of toll in that
town from the first year of the coronation of King John.[167]

[Footnote 165: 1 John (1200). _Rot. Cart. p._ 53.]

[Footnote 166: 1 John (1200). _Rot. Cart., pp._ 5, 56.]

[Footnote 167: See note to No. 8.]


5. DISPUTE WITH A LORD TOUCHING A GILD MERCHANT [_Curia Regis Rolls,
Mich. 8 Henry III, m. 6_], 1223-4.

_Buckingham._--Alan Basset was summoned to answer the burgesses of
Wycombe wherefore he permits them not to have their gild merchant with
its appurtenances, as they were wont to have it in the time of the lord
King John, when he had that manor in his hand; whereof the burgesses say
that in the time when the lord King John had that manor in his hand, and
when the lord the King gave it to the same Alan, they had a gild
merchant and a liberty which the same Alan has taken away from them,
wherefore they are much injured, for by that gild merchant they had this
liberty, that no merchant within their town could sell cloths at retail,
neither linens nor woollens, unless he were in the gild merchant or by
licence of the bailiffs of the burgesses who were in the gild merchant,
and furthermore in the same manner could not sell fells or wood or
broom[168] or such merchandise, unless he were in the gild or by
licence, as aforesaid; and the same Alan contravened this liberty and
granted to all merchants and others that they might sell cloths at
retail and fells and such wares as they please, and takes 3d. toll; and
they used to give for the farm of the lord the King half a mark yearly
to have that liberty; and because he has taken away that liberty from
them, they are injured and suffer damage to the value of 40 marks, and
thereof they produce suit, and if this suffices not, they offer to prove
that they had such seisin by the evidence of witnesses (_per vivam
vocem_), if they ought, or by the body of a man,[169] or by the
country,[170] and they offer 20 marks to have an inquisition thereon.

And Alan comes and defends force and tort and says that he has taken no
liberties from them, but will speak the truth; the lord King John gave
him that manor with all its appurtenances for his homage and service for
20l. a year and for the service of one knight, so that never afterwards
did they have a gild merchant, although they often sued for it and
murmured among themselves, so that he often asked of them their warrant,
if they had any, and they show him none; and the town is amended in that
merchants and others can sell their merchandise; and so they ought to
have no gild.

And the burgesses say that his statement is contrary to right, because
after his time, when he had that manor, they had that liberty, both
before his time and after, and they offer as before 20 marks to have an
inquisition thereon. Touching their warrant they say that they had a
charter of King Henry, grandfather of the lord the King, and it was
deposited in the church of Wycombe, and there in the time of war was
burned in the church, and thereof they put themselves on a jury.

And Alan defends that they had no charter thereof nor any warrant, nor
ever had seisin of that gild in his time, nor can he admit nor will he
admit any inquisition without the lord the King; but indeed it may be
true that when they had the manor of the King at farm, then they did
what they pleased.

A day is given to them on the morrow of Martinmas to hear their
judgment, and the burgesses put in their place William son of Harvey and
Robert le Taillur.[171]

[Footnote 168: Genista tinctoria (dyer's greenweed); "_genetein_" in
MS.]

[Footnote 169: _i.e._ Trial by battle.]

[Footnote 170: _i.e._ Trial by jury.]

[Footnote 171: The case was again adjourned and the judgment has not
been found.]


6. THE AFFILIATION OF BOROUGHS [_Charter Roll,11 Henry III, p. 1, m. 13,
No. 117_], 1227.

The King to all, etc., greeting. Know ye that we have granted and by our
present charter confirmed to our burgesses of Bedford all their
liberties and customs and laws and quittances, which they had in the
time of the lord King Henry, our grandfather, specially their gild
merchant with all their liberties and customs in lands and islands, in
pastures and all other their appurtenances, so that no one who is not in
that gild do any trafficking with them in city or borough or town or
soke. Moreover we have granted and confirmed to them that they be quit
of toll and pontage and stallage and lastage and passage, and of assarts
and every other custom throughout the whole of England and Normandy by
land and water and by the seashore, "bilande and bistrande," and have
all other customs throughout the whole of England and their liberties
and laws which they have in common with our citizens of Oxford,[172] and
do their trafficking in common with them within London and without and
in all other places. And if they have any doubt or contention touching
any judgment which they ought to make, they shall send their messengers
to Oxford, and what the citizens of Oxford shall adjudge hereon, that
they shall hold firm and fixed and certain without doubt, and do the
same. And we forbid that they plead without the borough of Bedford in
aught whereof they are charged, but of whatsoever they be impleaded,
they shall deraign themselves according to the laws and customs of our
citizens of Oxford, and this at Bedford and not elsewhere; because they
and the citizens of Oxford are of one and the same custom and law and
liberty. Wherefore we will and straitly command that our aforesaid
burgesses of Bedford have and hold their aforesaid liberties and laws
and customs and tenures well and in peace, freely and quietly, fully and
honourably, with soc and sac and tol and theam and infangenethef,[173]
and with all other their liberties and free customs and quittances, as
well and entirely as ever they had them in the time of King Henry, our
grandfather, and as fully and freely and entirely as our citizens of
Oxford have those liberties and as the charter of King Richard, our
uncle, which they have thereof, reasonably testifies. Witnesses as
above. Given [at Westminster on 24 March in the 11th year of our reign].

[Footnote 172: Oxford was also affiliated to London by charter of 13
Henry III. [Charter Roll, 13 Henry III., p. 1, m. 12.]]

[Footnote 173: _i.e._ General rights of jurisdiction.]


7. BONDMAN RECEIVED IN A BOROUGH [_Bracton's Notebook, III_, 243, No.
1228], 1237-8.

Order was made to the bailiffs of Andover that at the first coming of
the lord the King to Clarendon they shew cause to the lord the King,
wherefore they have detained from Everard le Tyeis William of Amesbury,
his bondman and fugitive, inasmuch as he claims him at the time and
hours, as he says, etc.

And Adam de Marisco and other bailiffs of Andover come and say that the
aforesaid William was at one time dwelling at Wilton and was a
travelling merchant and married a woman in the town of Andover, and
within the year in which he married the same Everard came and sought him
as his bondman and fugitive, but they refused to deliver him to him and
dared not without the lord the King's command.

Afterwards the same Everard comes, and remits and quit-claims to the
lord the King and his heirs the aforesaid William with his whole brood,
etc.


8. AN INTER-MUNICIPAL AGREEMENT IN RESPECT OF TOLL [_Charter Roll, 23
Henry III, m. 3_], 1239.

The King to archbishops, etc. greeting. Know ye that whereas a dispute
was raised in our Court before us between our good men of Marlborough,
complainants, and our good men of Southampton, deforciants, of toll
which the aforesaid men of Southampton took from our men of Marlborough
against their liberties which they have by charter of King John, our
father, and by our charter, as they asserted; at length by our licence
it is covenanted between them on this wise, that all our men of
Marlborough, who are in the gild merchant of Marlborough and will
establish the same, be quit for ever of all custom and all manner of
toll in the town of Southampton and in all the appurtenances thereof,
whereof the men of Southampton within their liberty can acquit the said
men of Marlborough, notwithstanding that the charter of the same men of
Southampton is prior to the charters of the aforesaid men of
Marlborough;[174] and in like manner that the men of Southampton be quit
of all custom and toll in the town of Marlborough. We, therefore,
willing that the aforesaid covenant be firm and stable for ever, grant
and confirm it for us and our heirs. Witnesses:--Richard, count of
Poitou and earl of Cornwall, our brother, etc., as above [17 June,
Westminster].

[Footnote 174: The legal rule evolved in the thirteenth century for
cases where the crown granted to one town freedom from toll, and to
another town the right to exact toll, was that priority of grant
prevailed; _cf._ Bracton _f._ 56_b_. By grants of incompatible charters
the crown obtained fees from two sets of petitioners, and also costs
from the subsequent litigation.]


9. ENFORCEMENT OF CHARTER GRANTING FREEDOM FROM TOLL THROUGHOUT THE
REALM [_Chancery Files_], 1416.

Henry by the grace of God King of England and France and Lord of Ireland
to John Kerde of Ware Toller, greeting. Whereas among the rest of the
liberties and quittances granted to our beloved citizens of our city of
London by charters of our progenitors, sometime Kings of England, which
we have confirmed by our charter with the clause "_licet_,"[175] it is
granted to the same that they and their successors, citizens of the same
city, be quit for ever of pavage, pontage, murage,[176] toll and
lastage[177] throughout the whole of our realm and the whole of our land
and power, as is more fully contained in the charters and confirmation
aforesaid: We command you, as we have commanded before, that you permit
Thomas Sabarn, citizen of the city aforesaid, as it is said, to be quit
of such pavage, pontage, murage, toll and lastage, according to the
tenour of the charters and confirmation aforesaid, not molesting or
aggrieving him in aught contrary to the tenour of the same, or that you
signify to us the cause wherefore you have not obeyed our command before
directed to you thereon. Witness myself at Westminster, 25 March in the
4th year of our reign.

Sotheworth.

[_Endorsed._] The answer of John Kerde withinwritten.

I certify to you that I have permitted and will hereafter permit Thomas
Sabarn withinwritten to be quit of pavage, pontage, murage, toll and
lastage, as is commanded me by this writ, and have not molested or
aggrieved him on the same accounts, and will not molest or aggrieve him
hereafter.

[Footnote 175: Charter Roll, 2 Henry V., p. 2, No. 11. The clause
"_licet_" is a provision for the preservation of liberties in spite of
non-user.]

[Footnote 176: _i.e._ Tolls for the repair of streets, bridges, and
walls.]

[Footnote 177: _i.e._ A toll on cargoes and on wares entering a market
or fair.]


10. LICENCE FOR AN ALIEN TO BE OF THE GILD MERCHANT OF LONDON [_Charter
Roll, 37 Henry III, m. 21_], 1252.

The King to archbishops, etc., greeting. Know ye that we have granted
and by this our charter confirmed to Deutayutus Willelmi, merchant of
Florence, that he and his heirs for ever may have this liberty, to wit,
that in any tallage to be assessed on the community of our city of
London by our command they be not tallaged at more than one mark of
silver, and that they, with their own household, may buy, sell and
traffic without unlawful gain as freely and quietly throughout the whole
of our power as any of our citizens of London; and that the same
Deutayutus and his heirs be in the gild merchant of the same city and
have all other liberties and free customs, as well within the said city
as without, which the same citizens have or shall have or obtain
hereafter. Wherefore we will and straitly command for us and our heirs
that the aforesaid Deutayutus and his heirs have all the liberties, free
customs and quittances aforesaid for ever, as is aforesaid. These
witnesses:--Geoffrey de Lezinan, our brother, Peter de Sabaudia, John
de Grey, John de Lessinton, Peter Chaceporc, archdeacon of Wells, Master
W. de Kilkenny, archdeacon of Coventry, Artald de Sancto Romano, Robert
de Muscegros, Robert Wallerand, Stephen Bauzan, Robert le Norreys, Ralph
de Bakepuz, Imbert Pugeys and others. Given by our hand at Windsor, 3
November.[178]

[Footnote 178: In the thirteenth century aliens were commonly burgesses
of English towns (for an instance see below, Section VI, No. 30), and
Englishmen were members of foreign communities. In 1326 the Mayor and
commonalty of London deprived such aliens of the freedom of the city
(Riley Memorials, 151). This document furnishes the sole extant
reference to a gild merchant in London. See, however, Crump, in E.H.R.,
xviii. 315.]


11. DISPUTE BETWEEN THE MERCHANT GILD AND THE ABBOT OF BURY ST. EDMUNDS
[_B.M. Add. MSS. 17391, ff. 61-65_], 1304.

Pleas at the town of St. Edmund before William de Bereford, W. Howard
and W. de Carleton, appointed justices of the lord the King, on Tuesday
next after the feast of St. Lucy the Virgin[179] in the thirty-third
year of the reign of King Edward son of King Henry.

Nicholas Fouk and others by conspiracy premeditated among them at the
town aforesaid, and by oath taken among them, making unlawful assemblies
of their own authority on Monday next after the feast of the Nativity of
the Blessed Virgin Mary in the thirtieth year of the lord the King that
now is,[180] ordained and decreed that none should remain among them in
the said town having chattels worth 20s. who would not pay them 2s. 1d.,
which payment they call among themselves hansing-silver, which money
they took on that pretext respectively from Reynold del Blackhouse and
Robert the Carpenter, men dwelling in the town aforesaid, and also
beyond this 12d. of gersom from each of the said Reynold and Robert. And
likewise ... they decreed among themselves that every man of the same
town having chattels to the value of 10 marks should pay them 46s. 8d.,
which by that authority they took from Robert Scot, a man dwelling in
the aforesaid town. And also the same day and year they decreed among
themselves that no man should stay in the aforesaid town beyond a year
and a day without being distrained to take oath to maintain their
aforesaid assemblies and ordinances....

The aforesaid Nicholas Fouk and others readily acknowledge that the
Abbot is lord of the whole town aforesaid, and ought to appoint his
bailiffs to hold his court in the same town. But as for the conspiracy
aforesaid, etc., they make stout defence that they are not guilty of the
aforesaid conspiracy, etc. And as for the Abbot's charge against them
that they have made unlawful assemblies in the aforesaid town, decreeing
and ordaining that every man dwelling in the same town having chattels
to the value of 20s., etc. as above, they say that the aforesaid Abbot
makes plaint unjustly, for they say that they have an alderman and a
gild merchant in the aforesaid town and are free burgesses, etc.,
rendering judgments by their alderman of pleas pleaded in the court of
the same abbot before his bailiffs in the town aforesaid. And that
without any trespasses or unlawful assemblies they meet at their
Gildhall in the same town, as often as need be, to treat of the common
profit and advantage of the men and burgesses of the aforesaid town, as
is quite lawful for them. And that they and their ancestors and
predecessors, burgesses, etc., have used such a custom from time whereof
no memory is, to wit, of taking 2s. 1d. from every man dwelling in the
aforesaid town, being in the tithing of the Abbot of the place
aforesaid, having chattels to the value of 20s., that he may trade among
them and enjoy their market customs in the same town, and likewise of
receiving 46s. 8d. from every man of the town aforesaid having chattels
to the value of 10 marks to keep[181] their gild merchant. And that
there is the following custom among them beyond this, to wit, that
twelve burgesses of the aforesaid town have been accustomed to elect
four men of the same town yearly to keep their gild merchant, each of
whom shall have chattels to the value of 10 marks. Which four men so
elected have been accustomed to be forewarned by two burgesses of the
gild aforesaid, who are called _les Dyes_, to keep their gild aforesaid;
and the same men so elected have been accustomed to find pledges before
the alderman and burgesses in the Gildhall aforesaid to keep the gild
aforesaid, or that each of them would pay 46s. 8d., who should refuse to
keep that gild. And for the doing hereof the alderman and burgesses in
the town aforesaid have been accustomed to distrain every man in the
same town having chattels to the value of 10 marks, wishing to trade
among them and to enjoy their market customs. And thus then each of the
aforesaid four men so elected should enjoy burgess-ship among them and
their custom hereafter, and the burgesses of the aforesaid town in form
aforesaid have been used to receive 2s. 1d., etc. And this they are
ready to verify, whereof they crave judgment, etc....

The jurors say, etc. that ... the Abbot must answer whether the
aforesaid Nicholas Fouke and others have a gild merchant in the
aforesaid town or not, etc. The abbot says that they have not a gild
merchant nor cognisances of pleas pertaining to a gild merchant, nor a
commonalty nor a common seal nor a mayor; but they hold a gild at the
feast of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist in a certain place to
feast and drink together, there holding their unlawful assemblies and
taking from every man dwelling in the said town the aforesaid 2s. 1d.
and also 46s. 8d., levying such money from the men aforesaid, that the
payers thereof may be of their fellowship, by distraints made upon them;
and he does not deny that the ancestors of the aforesaid Nicholas and
others have been long accustomed to receive such extortions of 2s. 1d.
and 46s. 8d., but against the Law Merchant and against the will of the
aforesaid payers and against the peace, etc., and beyond the amount of a
third part of their goods; and by such extortions and ransoms they claim
to make burgesses within his liberty and lordship, which there pertains
to the Abbot himself and to no other to be done, etc.

A day is given.... It is awarded that the aforesaid Abbot [recover] his
damages of 199l. 13s. 4d. against the aforesaid Nicholas and others....
And let the same Nicholas and others be committed to gaol, etc.
Afterwards the aforesaid Nicholas and others came and made fine, etc.
And let certain others in the dispute be imprisoned for a month owing to
their poverty, etc. And the aforesaid Nicholas and others came before
the justices and satisfied the lord Abbot, etc.; therefore let them be
delivered from prison, etc.

[Footnote 179: Tuesday after December 13.]

[Footnote 180: Monday after September 8, 1302.]

[Footnote 181: _i.e._ To uphold.]


12. COMPLAINTS OF THE MEN OF LEICESTER AGAINST THE LORD [_Inquisitions
Miscellaneous, 87, No. 46_], 1322.

Inquisition taken at Leicester on Saturday next after the feast of St.
Barnabas the Apostle[182] in the 15th year of the reign of King Edward,
son of King Edward, before Roger Beler, guardian of the castles, lands
and tenements of Thomas, late earl of Lancaster,[183] and other enemies
and rebels of the lord the King in the County of Leicester, in the hand
of the lord the King by their forfeiture, by the oath of William le
Palmere of Leicester.[184]....

Who say on their oath that in the time of Edmund, late earl of
Leicester, uncle of the lord the King that now is, while he had the
lordship of the town aforesaid, the men of the same town who were in the
gild of the same town gave nothing for the retailing or sale of cloth or
other merchandise, but in the time of Thomas, late earl of Leicester, by
distraints of farmers[185] and extortions they were compelled to make
heavy fines yearly.

Further, in the time of the aforesaid Edmund, the fullers dwelling in
the same town gave nothing to any man for exercising that craft, but in
the time of Thomas they were compelled to pay 40s. a year, so that the
aforesaid farmers would not permit other fullers to come into the same
town, whereby none remains in the same town save one only, and he is
poor.

Further, in the time of Edmund, the butchers of the same town used to
give nothing to any man for exercising their trade, but in the time of
Thomas they were compelled to give 10s. a year to the farmers.

Further, in the time of Edmund, for four days at Christmas no court of
pleas of the Portmanmoot used to be holden, but in the time of Thomas by
extortions and distraints the farmers[185] used to compel those who owed
to others any debt, upon plaint made against them, to pay their debts
within the aforesaid four days, or to imprison their bodies until they
should have paid.

In the time of Edmund vendors of oatmeal sold their meal, giving nothing
to any man except toll; in the time of Thomas they were not permitted
to sell the aforesaid meal except by great measures, and then the
beadles of the farmers of the same town took by extortion from the
buyers a great quantity for measuring it, and to have that profit the
said beadles gave to the farmers 40s. a year.

Further, in the time of Edmund, the farmers of the demesne lands of the
same Edmund used to have the dung found in the four high roads and not
elsewhere in the lanes; in the time of Thomas, by force and might they
collected and took the dung in all the lanes, against the will of the
burgesses.

Further, in the time of Edmund, from payers of toll the farmers used to
take nothing by way of a double toll, and that by view of any of the
jurors of the same town; in the time of Thomas the farmers took from
payers of toll the heaviest ransoms at their will, exceeding the value
of the thing whereon the toll was so paid, and often more than the true
value.

Further, in the time of Edmund, the porters of the castle of the town of
Leicester meddled not in the town of Leicester with the making of any
attachments, except with a bailiff of the same town; in the time of
Thomas, by force and might they made attachments and other executions
without any bailiff of the town, and wrought great wrongs in the said
town, whereby the burgesses suffered great grievances.

In the time of Edmund, if any burgess were impleaded in the court of the
castle, the mayor and bailiffs of the same town used to claim their
court and freely have it at the Portmanmoot; in the time of Thomas the
farmers refused to admit their claims or to grant their court, but
compelled burgesses to answer there by various and heavy distraints.

Further, in the time of Edmund, buyers of wool used to hire carts to
carry their wool at their will; in the time of Thomas they were
compelled to give to the farmers 1d. on each sack and could hire carts
only at the will of the said farmers.

Further, in the time of Edmund, the foresters of "le Fruth" used not to
make attachments in the town of Leicester nor meddle there for any
trespasses of dry wood committed; in the time of Thomas, by extortion,
force and might, they made attachments both upon those who bought at
their doors from poor women carrying dry sticks on their heads, and upon
others, and caused the buyers to be amerced at the court of "le
Hethilegh."

In the time of Edmund, the brewers of the same town used to be amerced
once a year according to the measure of their guilt and at the rate of
6d. or 12d. at most; in the time of Thomas, the farmers levied from the
same by extortions and heavy ransoms at their will from one half a mark
and from another 10s., which they call farms of "Cannemol."

Further, in the time of Edmund, the weavers of the same town used to
give nothing to any man for exercising their trade; in the time of
Thomas the said farmers took by extortion from every weaver 40d. for
permission to work in broad cloth.

Further, in the time of Edmund the vendors of salt herrings and fish
could sell such their merchandise by themselves and their servants
(_servos_) with their own hands, giving nothing of their own except
toll; in the time of Thomas they were not permitted to sell their
merchandise, but the ministers of the farmers deputed hereto sold the
same and took great sums of money by extortion.

Further, in the time of Edmund, retailers of cloth selling in their
windows used not to be amerced except by view of jurors of the same town
and once a year at 12d.; in the time of Thomas they were compelled by
heavy extortions to make fines at his will.

In witness whereof the jurors have set their seals to this inquisition.

[Footnote 182: June 11.]

[Footnote 183: The necessities of Earl Thomas, leader of the opposition
to Edward II., had evidently reacted upon his tenants.]

[Footnote 184: And 23 others named.]

[Footnote 185: The lord's lessees, responsible for the farm of the
town.]


13. GRANT OF PAVAGE TO THE LORD OF A TOWN [_Patent Roll, 2 Edward III,
p. 1, m. 5_], 1328.

The King to the venerable father in Christ H. by the same grace bishop
of Lincoln, greeting. Know ye that we have granted to you, in aid of
paving your town of Newark, that from the day of the making of these
presents to the end of three years completed next following you take in
the same town, by those whom you shall think fit to depute hereto and
for whom you will be answerable, the underwritten customs on things for
sale coming to the same town, to wit, on each quarter of corn for sale
1/4d., on each horse and mare for sale 1/2d., on each hide of horse and
mare, ox and cow, fresh, salted and tanned, for sale, 1/4d., on each
cart carrying meat, salted or fresh, for sale, 1-1/2d., on 5 bacons for
sale 1/2d., on each salmon, fresh or salt, for sale, 1/4d., on each 100
mackerel for sale 1/2d., on each lamprey for sale 1/2d., on 10 sheep,
goats or swine for sale 1d., on 10 fleeces for sale 1/2d., on each 100
woolfells of sheep, goats, stags, hinds, bucks and does for sale 1d., on
each 100 fells of lambs, kids, hares, rabbits, foxes, cats and squirrels
1/2d., on each cart-load of sea-fish for sale 2d., on each horse-load
of sea-fish for sale 1/2d., on each truss of cloths brought by cart 3d.,
on each horse-load of cloth for sale or other diverse and minute things
for sale coming to the same town 1/2d., on each cart-load of iron for
sale 1d., on each 100 of steel for sale 1/4d., on each cart-load of tin
for sale 1/2d., on each quarter of woad 2d., on each tun of wine for
sale 2d., on each sack of wool for sale 2d., on each horse-load of wool
1d., on each horse-load of apples, pears or nuts for sale 1/4d., on each
100 of linen web and canvas for sale 1/2d., on each 100 of linen for
sale 1/4d., on each new cart for sale 1/4d., on each cart laden with
timber for sale 1/2d., on each 1000 laths 1-1/2d., on each 100 stockfish
and Aberdeen fish 1/2d., on each cart laden with hay or grass for sale
1/4d., on each cart carrying rushes for sale 1d., on each cart-load of
heath for sale 1/2d., on each truss of chalons[186] for sale 1/2d., on
each horse-load of glass (_verro_) 1/2d., on each horse-load of garlic
for sale 1/2d., on each 1000 herrings for sale 1/4d., on each 100 boards
for sale 1d., on each cart-load of faggots for sale 1/4d., on each
quarter of salt for sale 1/4d., on each dozen horse-loads of coals for
sale 1/2d., on each cart-load of coals for sale 1/2d., on each cart-load
of brushwood for sale 1/2d., on each horse-load of brushwood for sale
by the week 1/4d., on each 1000 nails for house gables (_ad cumilum
domus_) for sale 1/4d., on each 100 horse shoes for horses and
clout-nails for carts 1/2d., on 2000 of all manner of nails for sale
except nails for carts and house gables 1/4d., on each truss of every
kind of ware for sale coming to the same town and exceeding the value of
2s., 1/4d. And therefore we command you that you take the customs
aforesaid until the end of the said three years in the form aforesaid,
and that after the term of the said three years be complete the said
customs wholly cease and be annulled. In witness whereof, etc., to
endure for the aforesaid three years. Witness the King at Northampton, 8
May.

By the King himself.

[Footnote 186: Coverlets made at Chalons-sur-Marne.]


14. MISAPPROPRIATION OF THE TOLLS LEVIED FOR PAVAGE [_Fine Roll, 10
Edward III, m. 22_], 1336.

The King to his beloved and faithful John de Mounteny, Nicholas de
Beaulu, Robert Scuffyn, and William de Merston, greeting. Know ye that
whereas on the 8th day of May in the second year of our reign by our
letters patent we granted unto the venerable father Henry, bishop of
Lincoln, that he should have in the town of Newark pavage for the term
of three years next following, and afterwards, wishing to do further
grace to the same bishop in this behalf, we granted unto him that from
the end of the term aforesaid he should take in the town aforesaid such
pavage until the end of four years then next following, the collection
of which pavage amounts to no small sum, as it is said; and we have
received a petition shown before us and our council, containing that the
collectors of the pavage aforesaid in the time aforesaid have detained
by them the money which they have collected from that pavage by virtue
of the grants aforesaid, and still detain the same, converting it to
other uses than to the repair and amendment of that town, as would be
fitting, to the deception of us and contrary to the form of the grants
aforesaid: We, wishing to apply a remedy in this behalf, as well for us
as for the safety of the town aforesaid in times to come, as we are
bound, have appointed you, three and two of you, to survey all works, if
any have been done by the collectors aforesaid from such money levied
and collected during the time of the grants aforesaid in the same town,
and to enquire, if need be, of the names of the collectors aforesaid,
and to cause those collectors to come before you, three or two of you,
and to hear and determine finally the account of all the same collectors
of all their receipts from the time aforesaid for such cause, and to
distrain the same collectors to apply without delay in such repair all
money levied on account of the premises and not applied in the repair
aforesaid, and to appoint and depute certain fit collectors of the
pavage aforesaid in the town aforesaid of the same town, to collect and
levy the money there and to apply the same in the repair and amendment
of the pavage aforesaid in times to come, as you shall deem best to be
done according to your discretions for our advantage and the safety of
the town aforesaid. And therefore we command you that at certain days
which you, three or two of you, shall provide herefor, you hear and
determine the account aforesaid, and do and accomplish all and singular
the premises in the form aforesaid; for we have commanded our sheriff of
Nottingham that at certain days which you, three or two of you, shall
cause him to know, he cause to come before you, three or two of you, the
collectors aforesaid, and as many and such good and lawful men of his
bailiwick by whom the truth of the matter in the premises may the better
be known and enquired of. In witness whereof, etc. Witness the King at
Walsingham, 15 February. By petition of the Council.


15. ORDINANCES OF THE WHITE TAWYERS OF LONDON [_Guildhall Letter-Book F,
f. 126_], 1346.

In honour of God, of Our Lady, and of all Saints, and for the nurture of
tranquillity and peace among the good folks the Megucers, called
"_Whittawyers_," the folks of the same trade have, by assent of Richard
Lacer, Mayor, and of the Aldermen, ordained the points underwritten.

In the first place, they have ordained that they will find a wax candle,
to burn before Our Lady in the Church of All Hallows near London Wall.
Also, that each person of the said trade shall put in the box such sum
as he shall think fit, in aid of maintaining the said candle.

Also, if by chance any one of the said trade shall fall into poverty,
whether through old age, or because he cannot labour or work, and have
nothing with which to help himself; he shall have every week from the
said box 7d. for his support if he be a man of good repute. And after
his decease, if he have a wife, a woman of good repute, she shall have
weekly for her support 7d. from the said box, so long as she shall
behave herself well, and keep single.

And that no stranger shall work in the said trade, or keep house [for
the same] in the city, if he be not an apprentice, or a man admitted to
the franchise of the said city.

And that no one shall take the serving man of another to work with him,
during his term, unless it be with the permission of his master.

And if any one of the said trade shall have work in his house that he
cannot complete, or if for want of assistance such work shall be in
danger of being lost, those of the said trade shall aid him, that so the
said work be not lost.

And if any one of the said trade shall depart this life, and have not
wherewithal to be buried, he shall be buried at the expense of their
common box; and when any one of the said trade shall die, all those of
the said trade shall go to the Vigil, and make offering on the morrow.

And if any serving-man shall conduct himself in any other manner than
properly towards his master, and act rebelliously towards him, no one of
the said trade shall set him to work, until he shall have made amends
before the Mayor and Aldermen; and before them such misprision shall be
redressed.

And that no one of the said trade shall behave himself the more
thoughtlessly, in the way of speaking or acting amiss, by reason of the
points aforesaid; and if any one shall do to the contrary thereof, he
shall not follow the said trade until he shall have reasonably made
amends.

And if any one of the said trade shall do to the contrary of any point
of the Ordinances aforesaid, and be convicted thereof by good men of the
said trade, he shall pay to the Chamber of the Guildhall of London, the
first time 2s., the second time 40d., the third time half a mark, and
the fourth time 10s., and shall forswear the trade.

Also, that the good folks of the same trade shall once in the year be
assembled in a certain place, convenient thereto, there to choose two
men of the most loyal and befitting of the said trade, to be overseers
of work and all other things touching the trade, for that year, which
persons shall be presented to the Mayor and Aldermen for the time being,
and sworn before them diligently to enquire and make search, and loyally
to present to the said Mayor and Aldermen such defaults as they shall
find touching the said trade without sparing any one for friendship or
for hatred, or in any other manner. And if any one of the said trade
shall be found rebellious against the said overseers, so as not to let
them properly make their search and assay, as they ought to do; or if he
shall absent himself from the meeting aforesaid, without reasonable
cause, after due warning by the said overseers, he shall pay to the
Chamber, upon the first default, 40d.; and on the second like default,
half a mark; and on the third, one mark; and on the fourth, 20s. and
shall forswear the trade for ever.

Also, that if the overseers shall be found lax and negligent about their
duty, or partial to any person, for gift or for friendship, maintaining
him, or voluntarily permitting him [to continue] in his default, and
shall not present him to the Mayor and Aldermen, as before stated, they
are to incur the penalty aforesaid.

Also, that each year, at such assemblies of the good folks of the said
trade, there shall be chosen overseers, as before stated. And if it
shall be found that through laxity or negligence of the said governors
such assemblies are not held, each of the said overseers is to incur the
said penalty.

Also, that all skins falsely and deceitfully wrought in their trade,
which the said overseers shall find on sale in the hands of any person,
citizen or foreigner, within the franchise, shall be forfeited to the
said Chamber, and the worker thereof amerced in manner aforesaid.

Also, that no one who has not been an apprentice, and has not finished
his term of apprenticeship in the said trade shall be made free of the
same trade; unless it be attested by the overseers for the time being or
by four persons of the said trade, that such person is able, and
sufficiently skilled to be made free of the same.

Also, that no one of the said trade shall induce the servant of another
to work with him in the same trade, until he has made a proper fine with
his first master, at the discretion of the said overseers, or of four
reputable men of the said trade. And if any one shall do to the contrary
thereof, or receive the serving workman of another to work with him
during his term, without leave of the trade, he is to incur the said
penalty.

Also, that no one shall take for working in the said trade more than
they were wont heretofore, on the pain aforesaid, that is to say, for
the _dyker_[187] of _Scottes stagges_, half a mark; the _dyker of
Yrysshe_, half a mark; the _dyker of Spanysshe stagges_ 10s.; for the
hundred of _gotesfelles_, 20s.; the hundred of _rolether_, 16s.; for the
hundred skins of _hyndescalves_, 8s.; and for the hundred of
_kiddefelles_, 8s.[188]

[Footnote 187: A package of ten.]

[Footnote 188: Printed in Riley, Memorials, 232.]


16. DISPUTE BETWEEN THE MASTER SADDLERS OF LONDON AND THEIR JOURNEYMEN
[_Guildhall, Letter-Book II, f. 309_], 1396.

Whereas there had arisen no small dissension and strife between the
masters of the trade of Saddlers of London, and the serving-men, called
_yomen_, in that trade; because that the serving-men aforesaid against
the consent, and without leave of their masters, were wont to array
themselves all in a new and like suit once in the year, and often times
held divers meetings, at Stratford and elsewhere without the liberty of
the said city, as well as in divers places within the city; whereby many
inconveniences and perils ensued to the trade aforesaid; and also, very
many losses might happen thereto in future times, unless some quick and
speedy remedy should by the rulers of the said city be found for the
same; therefore the masters of the said trade on the 10th day of the
month of July, in the 20th year, etc., made grievous complaint thereon
to the excellent men, William More, Mayor, and the Aldermen of the City
aforesaid, urgently entreating that, for the reasons before mentioned,
they would deign to send for Gilbert Dustone, William Gylowe, John Clay,
John Hiltone, William Berigge, and Nicholas Mason, the then governors of
the serving-men aforesaid; to appear before them on the 12th day of July
then next ensuing.

And thereupon, on the same 10th day of July, precept was given to John
Parker, serjeant of the Chamber, to give notice to the same persons to
be here on the said 12th day of July, etc. Which Governors of the
serving-men appeared, and, being interrogated as to the matters
aforesaid, they said that time out of mind the serving-men of the said
trade had had a certain Fraternity among themselves, and had been wont
to array themselves all in like suit once in the year, and, after
meeting together at Stratford, on the Feast of the Assumption of the
Blessed Virgin Mary[189] to come from thence to the Church of St.
Vedast, in London, there to hear Mass on the same day, in honour of the
said glorious Virgin.

But the said masters of the trade asserted to the contrary of all this,
and said that the fraternity, and the being so arrayed in like suit
among the serving-men, dated from only thirteen years back, and even
then had been discontinued of late years; and that under a certain
feigned colour of sanctity, many of the serving-men in the trade had
influenced the journeymen among them and had formed covins thereon, with
the object of raising their wages greatly in excess; to such an extent,
namely, that whereas a master in the said trade could before have had a
serving-man or journeyman for 40 shillings or 5 marks yearly, and his
board, now such a man would not agree with his master for less than 10
or 12 marks or even 10 pounds, yearly; to the great deterioration of the
trade.[190]

And further, that the serving-men aforesaid according to an ordinance
made among themselves, would oftentimes cause the journeymen of the said
masters to be summoned by a beadle, thereunto appointed, to attend at
Vigils of the dead, who were members of the said Fraternity, and at
making offering for them on the morrow, under a certain penalty to be
levied; whereby the said masters were very greatly aggrieved, and were
injured through such absenting of themselves by the journeymen, so
leaving their labours and duties against their wish.

For amending and allaying the which grievances and dissensions, the
Mayor and Aldermen commanded that six of the said serving-men should
attend in the name of the whole of the alleged Fraternity, and
communicate with six or eight of the master saddlers aforesaid, etc.,
both parties to be here, before the said Mayor and Aldermen on the 19th
day of July then next ensuing to make report to the Court as to such
agreement between them as aforesaid. And further, the Mayor and Aldermen
strictly forbade the said serving-men in any manner to hold any meeting
thereafter at Stratford aforesaid, or elsewhere without the liberty of
the said city on pain of forfeiture of all that unto our Lord the King
and to the said city they might forfeit.

On which 19th day of July, came here as well the masters aforesaid as
the governors of the serving-men; and presented to the Mayor and
Aldermen a certain petition, in these words: "Gilbert Dustone, William
Gylowe, John Clay, John Hiltone, William Berigge, and Nicholas Mason, do
speak on behalf of all their Fraternity and do beg of the Wardens of the
Saddlers that they may have and use all the points which heretofore they
have used."

Which petition having been read and heard, and divers reasons by the
said masters unto the Mayor and Aldermen shown, it was determined that
the serving-men in the trade aforesaid should in future be under the
governance and rule of the masters of such trade; the same as the
serving-men in other trades in the same city are wont, and of right are
bound to be; and that in future they should have no fraternity,
meetings, or covins, or other unlawful things under a penalty, etc. And
that the said masters must properly treat and govern their serving-men
in the trade in such manner as the serving-men in like trades in the
city have been wont to be properly treated and governed. And that if any
serving-men should in future wish to make complaint to the Mayor and
Aldermen, for the time being, as to any grievance unduly inflicted upon
him by the masters aforesaid, such Mayor and Aldermen would give to him
his due and speedy meed of justice as to the same.[191]

[Footnote 189: August 15.]

[Footnote 190: For further evidence of combinations, see below, No. 32.]

[Footnote 191: Printed in Riley, Memorials, 542.]


17. ORDINANCES OF THE DYERS OF BRISTOL [_Patent Roll, 13 Henry IV, p. 2,
m. 31_], 1407.

These are the petition, ordinances and articles, which are granted and
confirmed to the masters, burgesses of the craft of dyeing of the town
of Bristol ... by the assent and advice of the whole Common Council ...
holden in the Gildhall of Bristol ... the 8th year of the reign of King
Henry the Fourth after the Conquest, to endure for ever, as well for the
honour of the town of Bristol as for the profit and amendment of the
said craft; the tenour of which petition and ordinances follows
hereafter:

To the honourable and discreet Sirs, the Mayor, Sheriff and Bailiffs of
the town of Bristol, and to all the honourable folk of the Common
Council, the said masters make supplication: Whereas certain persons of
the said town of divers crafts, not cunning in the craft of dyeing, who
were never apprentices nor masters of the said craft, take upon them
divers charges and bargains to dye cloths and wools of many folk of the
same town and the country round, which cloths and wools have been divers
times ill dressed and worked through their ignorance and lack of
knowledge, to the great damage of the owners and scandal of the whole
craft aforesaid and of the drapery of the same town; whereupon, most
wise Sirs, please it your special grace to grant to the said suppliants
the ordinances underwritten, to put out and bring to nought all deceits
and damages which could hereafter befal within the craft aforesaid, and
this for God and as a work of charity.

First, be it ordained and assented that each year two masters of the
said craft be elected by the common assent of all the masters of the
same craft in the town of Bristol, and their names presented to the
Mayor of Bristol in full court of the Gildhall of the same town, and
there to be sworn on the Holy Gospels within the quinzaine of Michaelmas
at the latest to survey well and lawfully all manner of defects which
shall be made henceforward as well in dyed cloths as in wools put in
woad within the franchise of Bristol. And if any damage is done to any
person through defect of dyeing by any man or woman of the said craft,
that then he shall pay sufficient amends to the parties damaged
according to the discretion of the said two masters and of four other
indifferent persons elected by the Mayor and his Council, as the
trespass demands. And if it so be that any man or woman will not abide
by the ordinance and award of the said two masters and other indifferent
persons elected by the Mayor as before is said, that then the Mayor and
his council for the time being shall cause them to be compelled to pay
and satisfy the said persons so damaged of all that is adjudged by them.
And in case that the said two masters after their oath made be negligent
in executing their office touching their said mistery, that they be
punished and amerced according to the advice of the Mayor and of the
court aforesaid so the use of the chamber and to the common profit as is
aforesaid.

Further, that no servant or apprentice of the said mistery be henceforth
admitted to the liberties of Bristol to be a burgess sworn to exercise
the said mistery until it be testified to the court before the Mayor of
Bristol by the said two masters that they are able and well learned in
the said craft of dyeing, to save and keep the goods of the good folk
who are wont to be served for their money in the exercise of the mistery
aforesaid. And if any master of the said mistery make any such servant
or apprentice, if he be not able and well learned in the said craft, as
before is said, he shall incur the penalty of 20s. for each time, to
wit, to the use and profit of the commonalty, as before is said, 13s.
4d., and to the masters for their light, 6s. 8d., without any pardon,
provided always that the Mayor of the town of Bristol have his power and
jurisdiction to accept and make burgesses of each person presented to
him, as has been used and accustomed before these times, these
ordinances notwithstanding.

Further, forasmuch as often before these times divers folk, as well
those who have not been apprentices, servants or masters of the said
mistery, as other folk who are of other misteries, not cunning nor
having knowledge in the aforesaid art of dyeing, have taken upon them to
dye cloths and wools put in woad, as well of good folk of the town as of
the country round, which, by reason of ill management and through lack
of knowledge of the said folk, are greatly impaired of their colours and
many other defects to the great loss and damage of the owners of the
said cloths and great scandal of the town and shame of the whole craft
aforesaid, whereby the masters and apprentices of the said craft of
dyeing go vagrant for lack of work, because the said folk of other
crafts have been occupied in their said craft, to their great mischief
and undoing, therefore it is ordained and assented that henceforward no
manner of man of the same craft nor any other mistery do dye any cloth
or wool, unless it be presented by the said masters that he be good and
able and sufficiently learned in the said craft, upon pain of paying to
the Mayor and Bailiffs of the chamber for the use and common profit, as
before is said, at the first default 6s. 8d., at the second default
13s. 4d., at the third default 20s., and for each default after
the said three defaults 20s., without any pardon, so that the said
masters have for their labour the third part arising from the said
defaults for their light, provided always that all the burgesses of this
town may make their profit for dyeing in their houses their own cloths,
as has been used before these times, these ordinances notwithstanding.

And after the view of the said petition and ordinances aforesaid by the
Mayor and Common Council, it was assented that all the masters of the
said mistery of dyeing dwelling within the franchise of Bristol should
come before the Mayor to hear their said ordinances and whether they
would assent thereto and grant them or not. And by command of the ...
Mayor, Ralph Dyer ... and many others of the mistery aforesaid came in
their own persons, to whom all the said ordinances were published and
declared, and every of them in the presence of the Mayor aforesaid
granted and assented to all the ordinances and pains aforesaid, praying
of their common assent that the ordinances and pains aforesaid be
ratified, confirmed and enrolled of record in the papers of the Gildhall
of Bristol, and be put in due execution for ever, saving always to the
jurisdiction of the Mayor and Common Council of the town of Bristol that
if any ordinance or any new addition hereafter touching the mistery
aforesaid which may be profitable as well for the town as for the
aforesaid mistery, that then by the advice and ordinance of the Mayor of
Bristol for the time being and the Council of the town and also of the
masters of the said mistery, they shall be corrected and amended
according to good faith and reason and put in due execution, the
ordinances aforesaid notwithstanding. Provided also that the dyers
abovesaid be bound by these ordinances to make the assay of woad and to
work wools and cloths as well in woad as in madder of the goods of all
merchants and burgesses of Bristol, taking for their labour reasonably
as has been accustomed and used before these times. In witness whereof,
at the special prayer and request of the said masters to keep and
maintain their ordinances aforesaid, we have put hereto the seal of the
office of the Mayoralty of the town of Bristol. Given in the Gildhall of
the same town 17 March, 8 Henry IV.[192]

[Footnote 192: From the confirmation of 13 Henry IV. Printed in _The Red
Book of Bristol_, ii. p. 81.]


18. INCORPORATION OF THE FRATERNITY OF THE HABERDASHERS OF LONDON
[_Patent Roll, 26 Henry VI, p. 2, m. 23_], 1448.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. Know ye that of our especial
grace and the inspiration of charity, and for the especial devotion
which we bear and have towards the Blessed Virgin Catherine, we have
granted and given licence for us and our heirs, as much as in us lies,
to our beloved lieges, the men of the mistery of Haberdashers within our
city of London, that they may begin, unite, found, create, erect and
establish a gild or fraternity in honour of the same Virgin of men of
the mistery aforesaid and others, and have and hold that gild or
fraternity so begun, united, founded, created, erected and established,
and enjoy and exercise the same to them and their successors for all
future times to endure; and that they and their successors may increase
and augment the same gild or fraternity and hold the gild or fraternity
aforesaid of the said mistery of Haberdashers and any persons whom they
will receive within the fraternity aforesaid, and may elect and make
four wardens from themselves as often as they shall please or need shall
be for the governance, custody and rule of the said fraternity for ever,
as shall best please them; and that the said wardens and their
successors each year may make a livery of vesture of one suit among the
brethren and sisters of the same fraternity, and their meetings and
gatherings in places of our city aforesaid, and there in honest manner
hold and keep their feast of food and drink at the feast of St.
Catherine the Virgin, and make ordinances among themselves as often as
they shall please and as they shall deem most necessary and opportune,
and ordain and rule their mistery and correct and amend defects of their
servants by view of the Mayor of the city aforesaid for the time being
or of any person whom he shall depute hereto in his place, as they shall
deem fit to be done for the greater utility of the commonalty of our
people; and that none within the liberty of the city aforesaid keep a
shop or house of that mistery, unless he be of the liberty of that city,
nor any be admitted to the liberty of the said city in the same mistery,
unless he be presented by the aforesaid wardens or their successors and
by four other good and lawful men of the same mistery, and it be
testified to the Mayor of our said city for the time being that he is
good, faithful and fit for the same. And further of our more abundant
grace and at the supplication of our said lieges, the men of the mistery
aforesaid, we will and grant for us and our heirs, as much as in us
lies, that the same wardens and their successors be perpetual and
capable and the said fraternity be by itself a solid and perpetual and
corporate fraternity, and that that fraternity be hereafter named the
fraternity of St. Catherine the Virgin of Haberdashers in the city of
London, and the said wardens and their successors [the wardens] of the
fraternity of St. Catherine the Virgin of Haberdashers in the city of
London, and we incorporate the said wardens and their successors and the
fraternity aforesaid to endure for ever, and we make them as it were one
body and declare, accept and approve them for one body and hold them for
one body. We have granted also for us and our heirs, as far as in us
lies, to the aforesaid wardens, that they and their successors, by the
name of the wardens of the fraternity of St. Catherine the Virgin of
Haberdashers in the city of London, may acquire to them and their
successors in fee and perpetuity lands, tenements, rents, annuities and
other possessions as well of those which are held of us in free burgage
as others, provided that by inquisitions to be taken thereon in due form
and returned into the Chancery of us and our heirs it be found that it
can be done without damage or prejudice to us or our heirs or others
whomsoever, and that they may have a common seal and be impleaded and
implead others by the name of the wardens of the fraternity of St.
Catherine the Virgin of Haberdashers in the city of London for ever
before any judges in any courts, and that they may have and hold to them
and their successors all lands and tenements, rents, annuities and other
possessions whatsoever acquired by the aforesaid wardens and their
successors, and enjoy the same for ever without obstacle, impeachment or
hindrance of us or our heirs, our justices, escheators, sheriffs or
other bailiffs or ministers of us or our heirs whomsoever, the Statute
published touching lands and tenements not to be put in Mortmain, or any
other Statute or ordinance made to the contrary, notwithstanding. And
further of our more abundant grace we have granted for us and our heirs
to our aforesaid lieges and wardens and their successors aforesaid for
ever that the same wardens and their successors, wardens of the
fraternity aforesaid for the time being, have and make full search as
well in and of the mistery of Haberdashers and of every thing touching
it, as of all goods and things in any wise belonging to or incumbent on
the craft of Haberdashers aforesaid brought or hereafter to be brought
by any alien or any aliens from parts remote into our realm of England,
when they or any of them shall bring the same to the same our city or
the suburbs thereof or within three miles distant round about the said
city, and also of each such alien and of such misteries and things which
they, our privileged lieges, use or have used before these times, and
may present all defects in that behalf found by them as well upon our
said lieges as upon aliens, according to their discretions, to the Mayor
of our city aforesaid for the time being or his deputy in this behalf,
if need be, and correct and reform the same by his survey. And further
we will and by these our letters we grant to our aforesaid lieges, the
men of the mistery aforesaid, that no officer, minister, artificer,
merchant or any other whosoever hereafter search or presume to search in
any wise any our privileged liege employing the craft aforesaid nor his
goods of haberdashery, save only the four wardens of the craft aforesaid
for the time being; so that it be not to the prejudice of the Mayor of
our city of London. In witness, etc. Witness the King at Westminster the
3rd day of June. By the King himself and of the said date, etc.


19. INDENTURE OF APPRENTICESHIP [_Ancient Deeds_, A 10022], 1459.

This indenture made between John Gibbs of Penzance in the county of
Cornwall of the one part and John Goffe, Spaniard, of the other part,
witnesses that the aforesaid John Goffe has put himself to the aforesaid
John Gibbs to learn the craft of fishing, and to stay with him as
apprentice and to serve from the feast of Philip and James[193] next to
come after the date of these presents until the end of eight years then
next ensuing and fully complete; throughout which term the aforesaid
John Goffe shall well and faithfully serve the aforesaid John Gibbs and
Agnes his wife as his masters and lords, shall keep their secrets, shall
everywhere willingly do their lawful and honourable commands, shall do
his masters no injury nor see injury done to them by others, but prevent
the same as far as he can, shall not waste his master's goods nor lend
them to any man without his special command. And the aforesaid John
Gibbs and Agnes his wife shall teach, train and inform or cause the
aforesaid John Goffe, their apprentice, to be informed in the craft of
fishing in the best way they know, chastising him duly and finding for
the same John, their apprentice, food, clothing linen and woollen, and
shoes, sufficiently, as befits such an apprentice to be found, during
the term aforesaid. And at the end of the term aforesaid the aforesaid
John Goffe shall have of the aforesaid John Gibbs and Agnes his wife
20s. sterling without any fraud. In witness whereof the parties
aforesaid have interchangeably set their seals to the parts of this
indenture. These witnesses:--Richard Bascawen, Robert Martyn and Robert
Cosyn and many others. Given at Penzance, 1 April in the 37th year of
the reign of King Henry the Sixth after the Conquest of England.

[Footnote 193: May 1.]


20. A RUNAWAY APPRENTICE _[Early Chancery Proceedings, File 6, No. 7],
c._ 1425.

To the most reverend father in God and his most gracious lord, the
bishop of Winchester, chancellor of England.

Beseecheth meekly William Beverley of London that whereas William
Batyngham has been arrested and detained in prison in Salisbury at the
suit of the said beseecher, for that he was his apprentice and departed
from his service here in London, and has been the whole time since ...
wandering in divers towns, as in Winchester, Bristol and elsewhere, so
that the said beseecher could not find him until now of late suddenly,
and so it is that upon the matter abovesaid his said suit cannot be
determined in Salisbury, for that the retaining and departing did not
take place within the said town: Please it your most gracious discretion
to grant to the said beseecher a writ directed to the mayor, bailiffs
and keeper of the gaol there and to each of them to have the body of the
said William Batyngham with such a clause "by whatsoever name he be
known," before you at a certain day to be limited by you, considering
that he has no other remedy, and that for God and in work of
charity.[194]

[Footnote 194: This case illustrates the growing habit of appealing to
the Chancellor's equitable jurisdiction, a characteristic feature of
fifteenth century administrative and legal history.]


21. INCORPORATION OF A GILD FOR RELIGIOUS AND CHARITABLE USES [_Patent
Roll, 25 Henry VI, p. 2, m. 5_], 1447.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. Know ye that of our especial
grace and out of reverence for the Holy Trinity we have granted and
given licence for us and our heirs, as much as in us lies, to Ralph,
lord of Cromwell, and Thomas Thurland that they and one of them, to the
praise and honour of the Holy Trinity, may begin, found, erect, unite,
create and establish a fraternity or gild perpetual in the church of St.
Mary of Nottingham of an alderman and two wardens and brethren and
sisters of the parishioners of the same church and others who of their
devotion shall wish to be of the same fraternity or gild, to endure for
perpetual times to come; and that the said alderman and wardens and
brethren and sisters of the fraternity or gild aforesaid, when it shall
be thus begun, founded, erected, united, created and established, and
their successors, be in fact and name one body and one perpetual
commonalty, and have perpetual succession and a common seal to serve for
the affairs of that fraternity or gild, and be persons able and capable
in law to purchase to them and their successors in fee and perpetuity
lands and tenements, rents and other possessions whatsoever of persons
whomsoever; and that the same alderman and wardens and brethren and
sisters and their successors for ever, by the name of the alderman and
wardens and brethren and sisters of the fraternity or gild of the Holy
Trinity of Nottingham, may plead and be impleaded before any judges
soever in any courts and actions whatsoever. And further we will and by
these presents we grant that the same alderman and wardens and brethren
and sisters and their successors may augment the same fraternity or gild
when it shall be thus begun, founded, erected, united, created and
established, and receive new brethren and sisters into the same
fraternity or gild, as often and when it shall seem to them hereafter
necessary and opportune; and also once a year elect and make from
themselves and their successors an alderman and two wardens to support
the charges of the business touching and concerning the said fraternity
or gild, and to rule and govern the same fraternity or gild. And
further, of our more abundant grace we have granted and given licence
for us and our heirs, as far as in us lies, to the aforesaid alderman
and wardens and brethren and sisters and their successors, that, when
the same fraternity or gild shall be thus begun, founded, erected,
united, created and established, or their successors, for the
maintenance of two chaplains to celebrate divine service for the good
estate of us and Margaret our consort while we shall live and for our
soul when we shall have departed this life and the souls of all our
progenitors deceased, and for the good estate of the brethren and
sisters of the same fraternity or gild, while they shall live, and for
their souls when they shall have departed this life, and the souls of
all the faithful departed, in the church aforesaid, according to the
ordinance of the aforesaid Ralph, lord of Cromwell, and Thomas, or one
of them, or their executors or assigns, to be made in this behalf, and
for the relief of the poor and feeble brethren and sisters of the said
fraternity or gild, they may purchase lands and tenements, rents and
services, which are held of us in chief or burgage or by any other
service soever or of others by any service soever, to the value of 20
marks a year beyond reprises, from any person or any persons soever
willing to give or grant the same to them, without fine or fee to be
taken or paid therefor to the use of us or our heirs, to have and to
hold to the same alderman and wardens and brethren and sisters of the
fraternity or gild abovesaid and their successors for the maintenance of
the said two chaplains and for the relief of the poor and feeble
aforesaid, as is said above, for ever; the Statute published touching
lands and tenements not to be put in Mortmain, or any other statute or
ordinance published or made to the contrary, notwithstanding; provided
that it be found by inquisitions duly to be taken thereon and lawfully
returned into the Chancery of us and our heirs, that it can be done
without damage or prejudice to us or our heirs or others whomsoever. In
witness whereof, etc. Witness the King at Bury St. Edmunds, 20 February.

By writ of privy seal, and of the date aforesaid by authority of
Parliament, and for 20 marks paid in the hanaper.



SECTION VI

THE REGULATION OF TRADE, INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE

   1. Assize of Measures, 1197--2. Grant to the lord of a manor of the
   assize of bread and ale and other liberties, 1307--3. An offence
   against the assize of bread, 1316--4. Inquisition touching a proposed
   market and fair, 1252--5. Grant of a fair at St. Ives to the abbot of
   Ramsey, 1202--6. Grant of a market at St. Ives to the abbot of
   Ramsey, 1293--7. Proceedings in the court at the fair of St. Ives,
   1288--8. The Statute of Winchester, 1285--9. The recovery of debt on
   a recognisance, 1293--10. Procedure at a fair pursuant to the Statute
   for Merchants, 1287--11. The aulnage of cloth, 1291--12. The
   Ordinance of Labourers, 1349--13. Presentments made before the
   Justices of Labourers, 1351--14. Excessive prices charged by
   craftsmen, 1354--15. Fines levied for excessive wages, 1351--16. Writ
   to enforce payment of excess of wages to the collectors of a subsidy,
   1350--17. Application of fines for excessive wages to a subsidy,
   1351-2--18. Labour legislation; the Statute of 12 Richard II.,
   1388--19. Labour legislation; a Bill in Parliament, 23 Henry VI.,
   1444-5--20. Organisation of the Staple, 1313--21. Arguments for the
   establishment of home staple towns, 1319--22. Ordinances of the
   Staple, 1326--23. The election of the mayor and constables of a
   Staple town, 1358--24. Royal letters patent over-ruled by the custom
   of the Staple, 1436--25. Prohibition of export of materials for
   making cloth, 1326--26. Commercial policy, _temp._ Edw. IV.--27. The
   perils of foreign travel, 1315--28. Grant of letters of marque and
   reprisals, 1447--29. Grant of liberties to the merchants of Douay,
   1260--30. Aliens at a fair, 1270--31. Confirmation of liberties to
   the merchants of Almain, 1280--32. Alien weavers in London, 1362--33.
   The hosting of aliens, 1442--34. An offence against Stat. 18 Henry
   VI. for the hosting of aliens, 1440--35. Imprisonment of an alien
   craftsman, _c._ 1440--36. Petition against usury, 1376--37. Action
   upon usury, _c._ 1480.


The documents in this section are suggestive rather than comprehensive.
No attempt has been made to illustrate the industrial and commercial
development of England as a whole; but its more important aspects are
indicated, and the machinery of administration outlined. Down to the end
of the thirteenth century industry is of local rather than of national
importance, and is regulated by custom rather than by law; while there
was undoubtedly considerable intercourse between town and town, the
conduct of trade, the oversight of conditions of labour, and the
settlement of disputes were matters for the townsmen themselves to deal
with in accordance with chartered rights or intermunicipal covenants.
For example, the unpaid debt of an individual burgess was exacted by the
_communitas burgensium_ to which the injured creditor belonged, from any
member of the _communitas burgensium_ to which the defaulting debtor
belonged, by the method of forcible seizure of goods. Although,
therefore, the state attempted to secure uniformity of weights and
measures and of cloth, and to maintain the quality and cheapness of the
necessaries of life in the interests of traders and consumers alike,
none the less the assizes of weights and measures and of cloth (No. 1),
of bread and ale (Nos. 2 and 3) and of wine, came to be regarded, as
might be expected in a feudal age, as franchises to be purchased by the
lord of a manor, or enforced by the elected officers of a town. The
regulation of trade and industry shares the characteristic features of
its environment.

The same is true of early commercial intercourse with foreign
communities. The right to hold a fair is a liberty granted by the crown
to a lord, and for centuries the great fairs were the chief
international marts (Nos. 4-7, 30). The freedom which alien merchants
enjoyed under a clause of _Magna Carta_ was extended by charters
granting privileges similar in detail to those procured by English towns
(Nos. 29-31), and it is not until the reign of Edward I. that a serious
attempt is made to nationalise regulation (Nos. 8-11). Thereafter
conflicts arise not only between the central legislature and the local
chartered body or privileged lord (No. 11), but between a growing
self-conscious merchant class and the alien communities which had
hitherto controlled the export and import trade of the country (Nos. 21,
22). The State assumes new responsibilities, and Parliament attempts to
standardise old and enforce new regulations for the nation at large
(Nos. 12, 18, 19, 25). The Statute emerges over against the Charter on
the one hand and the Ordinance on the other. The difficulties of
Parliament are twofold; it has to fight, first, against old concessions
which would be upheld by the Courts (No. 11), and second, against the
uncertain operation of the royal prerogative (No. 34). It has often been
urged that the mediæval statute was little more than the expression of
an ideal, and that administrative machinery was insufficient for its
adequate execution. The truth is rather that Parliament was one of
several competing regulative institutions, and that notwithstanding the
most punctilious and inquisitorial administrative methods, its measures
were neutralised by existing privileges and by fresh exemptions
extracted from a chronically bankrupt and insincere monarchy. That the
administration was not of itself ineffective is clear from the
enforcement of the Statutes of Labourers in the fourteenth century (Nos.
12-17) and of the Statute of 18 Henry VI restricting the freedom of
aliens in the fifteenth century (Nos. 33, 34). The Crown was always
preoccupied with the state of the revenue; statutes are enforced or
overridden, according as their operation will benefit or deplete the
Exchequer. It was the experience of centuries that gave point to queen
Elizabeth's affection for the prerogative. None the less great strides
were made in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries towards the end
largely achieved in the Tudor period. The Elizabethan legislation sums
up and rounds off the work of the previous two hundred years. The
regulation of wages and of the conditions of labour (Nos. 12-19), the
protection of industry, commerce and shipping, making national trade an
important factor in international diplomacy (Nos. 20, 22, 25,27,28), the
emergence of a native mercantile class eager to win the export trade for
their own country by means of the staple (Nos. 20-24), the jealousy of
the alien, growing in intensity throughout the fourteenth and fifteenth
centuries (Nos. 21, 33, 34, 35), the development of a home cloth
manufacture competing with the best foreign products (Nos. 22, 25, 32),
and the provision of remedies against the mediæval bugbear of usury
(Nos. 36, 37), all assist in the gradual ripening of a national economy,
the fruits of which were gathered first in the Tudor era.


AUTHORITIES

   The principal modern writers dealing with the subject of this section
   are:--Rogers, _History of Agriculture and Prices_; Rogers, _Six
   Centuries of Work and Wages_; Cunningham, _Growth of English Industry
   and Commerce_; Ashley, _Economic History_; Ashley, _James van
   Artevelde_; Cunningham, _Alien Immigrants_; Putnam, _The Enforcement
   of the Statutes of Labourers_; Schanz, _Englische Handelspolitik
   gegen Ende des Mittelalters_; Varenbergh, _Relations diplomatiques
   entre le Comté de Flandre et l'Angleterre_; Ochenkowski, _England's
   Wirthschaftliche Entwickelung im Ausgange des Mittelalters_;
   Höhlbaum, _Hansisches Urkundenbuch_. See also the _English and
   American Historical Reviews_.

   Contemporary authorities:--Thomas Aquinas, _De Usuris_; Political
   Poems and Songs (Wright, Rolls Series); Parliament Rolls (Record
   Commission); Calendars of Patent, Close and Fine Rolls (Record Office
   Publications).


1. ASSIZE OF MEASURES [_Roger of Hoveden, Rolls Series_, IV, 33], 1197.

It is established that all measures of the whole of England be of the
same amount, as well of corn as of vegetables and of like things, to
wit, one good horse load; and that this measure be level as well in
cities and boroughs as without. Also the measure of wine and ale and of
all liquids shall be of the same amount according to the diversity of
liquids. Weights and measures also, great and small, shall be of the
same amount in the whole realm, according to the diversity of wares.
Measures also of corn and liquids, wine and ale, shall have marks put
thereon,[195] lest by guile they can be falsified.

It is established that woollen cloths, wherever they be made, be made of
the same width, to wit, of two ells within the lists,[196] and of the
same good quality in the middle and at the sides. Also the ell shall be
the same in the whole realm and of the same length, and the ell shall be
of iron.

It is forbidden to all merchants throughout the whole of the realm that
any merchant set in front of his shop red or black cloths or shields or
any other thing, whereby the buyers' eyes are often deceived in the
choice of good cloth.

It is also forbidden that any dye for sale, save black only, be made
anywhere in the realm, except in cities or chief boroughs.

It is also established that in every city or borough four or six lawful
men of the same town, according to the size of the town, together with
the sheriff,[197] or with the reeves of the city or borough, if the same
be not in the hand of the sheriff, be assigned to keep the assize in
this form: that they see and be sure that all things are sold and bought
by the same measure, and that all measures are of the same size
according to the diversity of wares. And if they find any who shall be
confessed or convicted of having sold by other than the established
measure, his body shall be taken and sent to prison, and all his
chattels shall be seized into the hand of the lord the King, nor shall
he be delivered save by the lord the King or his chief justice. Touching
the keepers themselves it is established that if they perform this
keeping so negligently that they be convicted by others than themselves
before the justices of the lord the King of transgressing any written
assize either of measures or of the width of cloths, the keepers shall
remain at the mercy of the lord the King touching their chattels.

It is commanded also that after the feast of the Purification of St.
Mary no man in any county sell anything save by the ordained measure,
which shall be [everywhere] of the same size; nor after the fair of
mid-Lent at Stamford sell any cloth of smaller width than two ells
within the lists.

[Footnote 195: "_Inclaventur in eis claves._"]

[Footnote 196: The selvages.]


2. GRANT TO THE LORD OF A MANOR OF THE ASSIZE OF BREAD AND ALE AND OTHER
LIBERTIES [_Inquisitions ad quod damnum_, 63, 16], 1307.

_Nottingham._--Inquisition taken at Nottingham before William de
Chelardeston, sheriff of Nottingham, on Sunday, a fortnight after Easter
in the 35th year of the reign of King Edward, whether the lord the
King, without doing prejudice or injury to any man, can grant to his
beloved and trusty Peter Pycot that he and his heirs may have for ever
in his manor of Ratcliffe upon Soar, in the county of Nottingham, view
of frankpledge of his men and tenants of the same manor and whatever
pertains to such view, and amends of the assize of bread and ale broken
by the same men and tenants, and a pillory and a tumbrel and
"infangenethef"[198] and gallows for the execution of judgment, for a
fixed rent thereof according to the true value of the same liberties, to
be rendered each year by the hands of the sheriff of that county for the
time being to the lord the King and his heirs at their Exchequer, or
not, and if prejudice or injury should be done to any man by the grant
aforesaid, then to whom and in what manner and how, and how much the
liberties aforesaid to be possessed in the same manor can be worth
yearly according to the true value of the same, by the oath of Robert
Pouterel of Thrumpton.[199] ... Who say upon their oath that the lord
the King, without doing prejudice or injury to any man, can grant to the
aforesaid Peter Pycot that he and his heirs may have for ever in his
manor of Ratcliffe upon Soar view of frankpledge.[200] ... They say
further that all the liberties aforesaid in the said manor are worth 2s.
a year according to the true value thereof. In witness whereof the
aforesaid jurors have set their seals to this inquisition. Given at
Nottingham the day and year abovesaid.

[Footnote 197: Reading _simul cum vicecomite_ for _similiter in
vicecomitatu_.]

[Footnote 198: The right to take and judge thieves within the manorial
precincts.]

[Footnote 199: And eleven others named.]

[Footnote 200: And the other liberties specified above. For an
explanation of view of frankpledge, see note to Section IV., No. 5
above.]


3. AN OFFENCE AGAINST THE ASSIZE OF BREAD [_Guildhall, Letter-Book D, f.
189_], 1316.[201]

On the Saturday next before the Feast of the Invention of the Holy
Cross,[202] in the 9th year of the reign of King Edward, son of King
Edward, Richard de Lughteburghe was attached to make answer as to a
certain false wastel[203] loaf of his. And the same Richard said that he
was not a baker, and that he did not have that wastel bread baked; but
that, as a regrator, he bought it of a certain baker who lives in
Southwark. And upon this he was charged by the Mayor and Aldermen with
being in partnership with the baker aforesaid, in baking such bread, and
sharing with him in the gain thereby, or loss, if such should happen:
whereupon, being asked how he would acquit himself thereof, he said that
he was not the partner of the said baker, nor had he any share with him;
and he put himself upon the country as to the same. Therefore the
country was summoned for the Tuesday next ensuing, and he was delivered
into the custody of the sheriffs, etc.

On which day the said Richard came, and the jury came by John de Estwode
and others in the panel named. Which jurors said upon their oath, that
the aforesaid Richard is a partner of the said baker for gain in baking
the bread aforesaid. Therefore it was adjudged that he should have the
punishment of the hurdle. And he was so punished now for the first time,
because his loaf was wanting to the amount of 2s. _9d._ in the proper
weight of half a mark for the halfpenny wastel loaf.

Also Alan de Lyndeseye, baker, was sentenced to the pillory, because he
had been convicted of baking _pain demaign_ that was found to be of bad
dough within, and good dough without. And because such falsity redounds
much to the deception of the people who buy such bread, he was committed
for punishment, etc.

[Footnote 201: Printed in Riley, Memorials, 119.]

[Footnote 202: May 1.]

[Footnote 203: Medium quality.]


4. INQUISITION TOUCHING A PROPOSED MARKET AND FAIR [_Inquisitions ad
quod damnum_, 1, 21], 1252.

Henry by the grace of God King of England, Lord of Ireland, Duke of
Normandy and Aquitaine and Count of Anjou, to his mayor and bailiffs of
Bristol, greeting. We command you that by the oath of good and lawful
men of your town, by whom the truth of the matter may the better be
known, you make diligent enquiry if it would be to the nuisance of the
town aforesaid if we should grant to our beloved abbot of Pershore that
he have a market at his manor of Hawksbury on Monday and a fair there at
the feast of St. Matthew in Autumn[204]; and if it be to your nuisance,
to what extent; and that without delay you send to us the inquisition
made thereon under your seal and the seals of those by whom it shall be
made, and this writ. Witness myself at Westminster, 26 February in the
36th year of our reign.

Inquisition made by command of the lord the King by the mayor and
bailiffs of Bristol, if it would be to the nuisance of the town of
Bristol if there were a market on Monday at the manor of Hawksbury which
E. abbot of Pershore holds, and if there were a fair there at the feast
of St. Matthew in Autumn, by William de Feria, clerk,[205] ... Who say
by their oath that it would not be to the nuisance of the town of
Bristol in any wise if there were a market on the aforesaid Monday at
the said manor of Hawksbury, and a fair there on the aforesaid feast of
St. Matthew in Autumn.[206]

[Footnote 204: September 21.]

[Footnote 205: And eleven others named.]

[Footnote 206: The abbot is granted the market and a fair on the eve,
day and morrow of the Decollation of St. John the Baptist (August 28-30)
by charter dated November 24, 1252 [_Charter Roll, 37 Henry III, m.
19_].]


5. GRANT OF A FAIR AT ST. IVES TO THE ABBEY OF RAMSEY[_Cart. Rams., f._
191 _b._], 1202.

John by the grace of God King of England, etc., greeting. Know ye that
we, for our salvation and for the souls of our ancestors and successors,
have granted and by our present charter have confirmed to God and the
church of St. Mary and St. Benedict of Ramsey, and to the abbot and
monks there serving God, a fair at St. Ives, to begin on the fourth day
before the feast of St. Laurence and to endure for eight days[207]; to
have and to hold for ever, so nevertheless that it be not to the
nuisance of neighbouring fairs.

Wherefore we will and straitly command that the aforesaid abbot and
monks have and hold the aforesaid fair well and in peace, freely and
quietly, entirely, fully and honourably, with all liberties and free
customs to such fair pertaining. Witnesses:--Robert earl of Leicester,
William earl of Arundel, and others.

Given by the hand of Simon, archdeacon of Wells, at Harcourt on the
seventh day of June in the fourth year of our reign.

[Footnote 207: August 6-13.]


6. GRANT OF A MARKET AT ST. IVES TO THE ABBEY OF RAMSEY[_Cart. Rams.,
f._ 191 _b._], 1293.

Edward by the grace of God King of England, lord of Ireland and Duke of
Aquitaine, to archbishops, bishops, abbots, priors, earls, barons,
justices, sheriffs, reeves, ministers and all his bailiffs and faithful,
greeting. Know ye that we have granted and by this our charter confirmed
to our beloved in Christ, the abbot and convent of Ramsey, that they and
their successors for ever have a market every week on Monday at their
manor of St. Ives in the county of Huntingdon, unless that market be to
the nuisance of neighbouring markets. Wherefore we will and straitly
command, for us and our heirs, that the aforesaid abbot and convent and
their successors for ever have the aforesaid market at their manor
aforesaid with all the liberties and free customs to such market
pertaining, unless that market be to the nuisance of neighbouring
markets, as is aforesaid. These witnesses:--the venerable fathers John,
of Winchester, Anthony, of Durham, William, of Ely, bishops, William de
Valencia, our uncle, Roger le Bygod, earl of Norfolk and marshal of
England, John de Warenna, earl of Surrey, Henry de Lascy, earl of
Lincoln, William de Bello Campo, earl of Warwick, Robert de Tybetot,
Gilbert de Thornton, John de Metingham, Robert de Hertford, Robert
Malet, and others. Given by our hand at Westminster on the fourteenth
day of May in the twenty-first year of our reign.


7. PROCEEDINGS IN THE COURT AT THE FAIR OF ST. IVES [_Court Roll, 178,
93, m. 1d._], 1288.[208]

Court on Saturday [24 April, 1288].

John son of John of Eltisley makes plaint of Roger the Barber that he
has unjustly broken a covenant with him, because, whereas the same John
was in the town of Ramsey on Monday next after the Epiphany of the Lord
last past, a year ago, in the house of Thomas Buk, the said Roger came
there and undertook to cure his head of baldness for _9d._, which he
paid in hand. On Tuesday the aforesaid Roger put him in plaster, and on
Wednesday likewise, and afterwards withdrew from the town, so that from
that day to this he would have nothing to do with the matter, to John's
damage of 1/2 mark; and he produces suit. The aforesaid Roger, being
present, denied [tort and force] and put himself on his law, and in
finding pledges of his law withdrew from the bar without licence.
Therefore the aforesaid John craved judgment on him as on a man
convicted. Wherefore it is awarded that the said Roger satisfy him of
the _9d._ principal, and of his damages, which are pardoned him; and
that for the trespass he be in mercy, _6d._ Pledge,----

[Footnote 208: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 23, p. 35.]


8. THE STATUTE OF WINCHESTER, _cc._ 4, 5 [_Statute Roll, 1, m. 41_],
1285.

And for the greater security of the country the King has commanded that
in the great towns, which are enclosed, the gates be shut from sunset
until sunrise; and that no man lodge in the suburbs, or in any foreign
part of the town save only in the daytime, nor yet in the daytime, if
the host will not answer for him; and that the bailiffs of towns every
week, or at the least every fortnight, make enquiry as to all persons
lodging in the suburbs, and in foreign parts of the towns; and if they
find any who receives or lodges in any manner persons who may be
suspected of being against the peace, the bailiffs shall do right
therein. And it is commanded that from henceforth watches be kept, as
has been used in times past, that is to say, from the day of the
Ascension to the day of St. Michael, in every city by six men at every
gate; in every borough by twelve men; in every town by six men or four,
according to the number of the inhabitants who dwell [in the town], and
that they keep watch continually all night, from sunset to sunrise. And
if any stranger pass by them, he shall be arrested until morning; and if
no suspicion be found, he shall go quit; and if they find cause of
suspicion, he shall be delivered to the sheriff forthwith, and he shall
receive him without danger, and keep him safely, until he be delivered
in due manner. And if they will not suffer themselves to be arrested,
hue and cry shall be levied against them, and those who keep watch shall
follow with all the town, with the towns near, with hue and cry from
town to town, until they be taken and delivered to the sheriff, as
before is said; and for the arrest of such strangers none shall be
called in question.

And further, it is commanded, that highways from one market town to
another be enlarged, where there are woods, hedges, or ditches, so that
there be neither ditches, underwood, nor bushes wherein a man may lurk
to do hurt, near the road, within two hundred feet on the one side, and
two hundred feet on the other side, provided that this statute extend
not to oaks, or to great woods, so as it be clear underneath. And if by
default of the lord who will not abate the ditch, underwood, or bushes
in the manner aforesaid, any robberies be done, that the lord be
answerable therefor; and if murder be done, that the lord make fine at
the King's pleasure. And if the lord be not able to clear away the
underwood, that the country aid him in doing it. And the King wills,
that in his demesne lands and woods, within his forest and without, the
roads be enlarged as aforesaid.

And if, perchance, a park be near the highway, it is requisite that the
lord of the park diminish his park, so that there be a space of two
hundred feet from the highway, as before said, or that he make such a
wall, ditch, or hedge, that evil doers will not be able to pass or
return, to do evil.


9. THE RECOVERY OF DEBT ON A RECOGNISANCE [_Chancery Files_, 415], 1293.

To the reverend and discreet and their dearest lord, J. de Langton,
chancellor of the illustrious King of England, Robert le Venur, guardian
of the city of Lincoln, and Adam son of Martin of the same city, clerk,
deputed to receive recognisances of debts, greeting. With all reverence
and honour we make known to your reverend discretion by these presents
that Simon le Sage of Scarborough and William Kempe of the same town, of
the county of York, and each of them for the whole sum, acknowledged
before us that they owe to William le Noyr of Lincoln 28s. sterling to
be paid to him or his attorney at the feast of St. Michael in the
twenty-first year of the reign of King Edward, according to the form of
the statute of the said lord the King published at Westminster. And
because the aforesaid Simon and William have not kept the term of their
payment at all, we beseech your reverend discretion humbly and devoutly,
that you will order a writ to be sent to the sheriff of York to compel
the same Simon and William to pay the said money according to the form
of the statute aforesaid. May your reverend discretion prosper long and
well. Given at Lincoln on Friday next after the feast of St. Martin in
the year aforesaid.[209]

[Footnote 209: This procedure was first authorised by the Statute of
Acton Burnel (1283), the main provisions of which run as follows:

"Forasmuch as merchants, who before these times have lent their goods to
divers folk, are fallen into poverty, because there was no speedy law
provided whereby they could readily recover their debts at the day fixed
for payment, and for that reason many merchants have ceased to come to
this land with their merchandise to the damage of the merchants and of
the whole realm: the King, by himself and his council ... has ordained
and established that the merchant who will be sure of his debt cause his
debtor to come before the mayor ... and ... to acknowledge the debt and
the day of payment, and that the recognisance be enrolled.... And if the
debtor pay not at the day fixed for him ... the mayor ... shall
forthwith cause the moveables of the debtor to be sold to the amount of
the debt ... and the money to be paid without delay to the creditors....
And if the debtor have no moveables in the power of the mayor from which
the debt can be levied, but have the same elsewhere in the realm, then
the mayor shall send to the Chancellor ... the recognisance made before
him ... and the Chancellor shall send a writ to the sheriff in whose
bailiwick the debtor shall have moveables, and the sheriff shall cause
satisfaction to be made to the creditor.... And if the debtor have no
moveables wherefrom the debt can be levied, then his body shall be
taken, wheresoever he be found, and kept in prison until he have made
satisfaction, or his friends for him."

Two years later (1285) the Statute for Merchants strengthened the
creditor's security by providing that imprisonment should immediately
follow non-payment of the debt.]


10. PROCEDURE AT A FAIR PURSUANT TO THE STATUTE FOR MERCHANTS [_Court
Rolls, 178, 96, m. 4_], 1287.[210]

Pleas in the Fair of St. Ives, 15 Edward I, in the first year of John,
lord Abbot, before William of Stow.

At the command of the lord the King, according to the tenour of the
letter attached to the present roll, the community of London with the
other communities at the fair of St. Ives was summoned to hear the order
of the lord the King according to the new form of this statute touching
merchants frequenting English fairs, and before them the aforesaid
letter was read. And afterwards by the community of the citizens of
London there were elected two of the more discreet and trusty men of the
same city, to wit, Richard Poyntel and William of Paris, to whom in full
court was delivered one of the two seals sent to the keepers of the
fair, enclosed under the seal of the lord the King and opened in the
presence of the said merchants; and the other seal was delivered in the
same court to one Henry of Leicester, clerk and attorney of Sir John de
Bauquell, to whom the lord the King committed the merchants' seal, as
appears in the letter attached to the present roll:----

Edward by the grace of God King of England, lord of Ireland and duke of
Aquitaine, to the keepers of the fair of St. Ives, greeting. Whereas our
beloved clerk, John de Bauquell, citizen of London,--to whom we have
committed the merchants' seal to be kept, and the office thereof,
according to the form of the statute provided hereon by our council, to
be executed by him or others fit herefor, whom he shall be pleased to
depute hereto, in fairs within our realm during our pleasure,--has
deputed Henry of Leicester, clerk, under him in our presence to execute
the aforesaid office in his place in the fairs aforesaid: We command you
to admit hereto for this turn the aforesaid Henry in place of the
aforesaid John: We command you also, that by assent of the community of
merchants coming to the same fair you cause to be chosen two lawful
merchants of the city of London, who, after taking oath, shall receive
recognisances according to the form of our aforesaid statute, after the
aforesaid seal, which we are sending to you in a box under our seal, has
been opened in their presence, and one piece thereof delivered to the
same merchants and the other piece to the aforesaid clerk. Witness
Edmund, earl of Cornwall, our kinsman, at Westminster on 22 April in the
fifteenth year of our reign.[211]

[Footnote 210: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 23, p. 19]

[Footnote 211: The clause of the Statute (1285) relating to fairs runs
as follows: "And a seal shall be provided to serve for fairs, and the
same seal shall be sent to each fair under the seal of the King by a
clerk sworn; and by the keeper of the fair and by the community of the
merchants there shall be elected two lawful merchants of the city of
London, who shall take oath, and the seal shall be opened before them,
and the one piece shall be delivered to the aforesaid merchants, and the
other shall remain with the clerk, and before them or one of the
merchants, if both cannot be present, the recognisances shall be made."]


11. THE AULNAGE OF CLOTH [_Court Roll, 178, 97, m. 2d._], 1291.[212]
Court on Monday [14 May, 1291].

Hamo of Bury St. Edmunds brought a letter patent of Sir Roger de Lisle,
clerk of the Great Wardrobe, attached to this roll, ordering that he be
admitted by the keepers of the fair of St. Ives to measure woollen
cloths made in England, linen and canvas. And because the charter of the
lord the King touching the fair orders that no bailiff or minister of
the lord the King in any wise interfere with the fair aforesaid or its
appurtenances, whereby the Abbot and Convent of Ramsey and their
bailiffs should be prevented from having administration of all things
pertaining to that fair as well within the town as without for ever,
answer was made to the same Hamo by the steward that he would in no wise
admit him to execute such office, which would be to the disherison and
prejudice of the church of Ramsey and contrary to the liberty specified
in the fair-charter, unless Hamo would come into the court and yield up
his letter patent into the hands of the steward. To which court he came
and of his free will delivered up the aforesaid letter and afterwards
craved special grace; and at the instance of the merchants, his letter
patent having been abandoned and annulled, he is admitted for the
present.

[Footnote 212: St. Ives fair court. Printed in Selden Society
Publications, Vol. 23, p. 42. This incident illustrates the difficulties
of the central administration in dealing with local franchises.]


12. THE ORDINANCE OF LABOURERS [_Close Roll, 23 Edward III, p. 1, m.
8d._], 1349.[213]

The King to the sheriff of Kent, greeting. Because a great part of the
people and specially of the workmen and servants has now died in this
plague, some, seeing the necessity of lords and the scarcity of
servants, will not serve unless they receive excessive wages, and others
preferring to beg in idleness rather than to seek their livelihood by
labour: we, weighing the grave disadvantages which might arise from the
dearth specially of tillers and workmen, have had deliberation and
treaty hereon with the prelates and nobles and other learned men in
session with us, by whose unanimous counsel we have thought fit to
ordain that every man and woman of our realm of England, of whatsoever
condition, free or servile, able-bodied and under the age of sixty
years, not living by trade nor exercising a certain craft, nor having of
his own whereof he shall be able to live, or land of his own, in the
tilling whereof he shall be able to occupy himself, and not serving
another man, shall be bound to serve him who shall require him, if he be
required to serve in a suitable service, regard being had to his rank,
and shall receive only the wages, liveries, hire or salaries which used
to be offered in the places where he should serve in the twentieth year
of our reign of England, or in the five or six common years last
preceding; provided that lords be preferred to others in the bondmen or
tenants of their lands so to be retained in their service; so however
that such lords so retain as many as shall be necessary and not more;
and if such a man or woman, so required to serve, refuse so to do, the
same being proved by two trusty men before the sheriff, bailiff, lord,
or constable of the town where this shall come to pass, he shall be
taken forthwith by them or any of them and sent to the nearest gaol,
there to stay in strait keeping until he find security to serve in the
form aforesaid.

And if a reaper, mower or other workman or servant, of whatsoever rank
or condition he be, retained in the service of any man, withdraw from
the said service without reasonable cause or licence before the end of
the term agreed upon, he shall undergo the penalty of imprisonment, and
none, under the same penalty, shall presume to receive or retain such an
one in his service.

Furthermore no man shall pay or promise to pay to any man more wages,
liveries, hire or salaries than is accustomed, as is aforesaid, nor
shall any man in any wise demand or receive the same, under penalty of
the double of that which shall be so paid, promised, demanded or
received, to go to him who shall feel himself aggrieved hereby; and if
none such will prosecute, it shall go to any one of the people who shall
prosecute; and such prosecution shall be made in the court of the lord
of the place where such a case shall befal; and if the lords of towns or
manors shall presume in any wise to contravene our present ordinance, by
themselves or their ministers, then prosecution shall be made against
them in the form aforesaid in counties, wapentakes and ridings, or other
such courts of ours, at a penalty of threefold of that so paid or
promised by them or their ministers; and if by chance any one shall have
covenanted with any man so to serve for a greater salary before the
present ordinance, the latter shall in no wise be bound by reason of the
said covenant to pay to such a man more than has been customary at other
times; nay, rather, he shall not presume to pay more under the penalty
aforesaid.

Moreover saddlers, skinners, tawyers, shoemakers, tailors, smiths,
carpenters, masons, tilers, boatmen, carters and other artificers and
workmen whosoever shall not take for their labour and craft more than
used to be paid to such in the twentieth year and other common years
preceding in the places in which they chance to be employed, as is
aforesaid; and if any shall receive more, he shall be committed to the
nearest gaol in the manner aforesaid.

Moreover butchers, fishermen, hostlers, brewers, bakers, poulterers and
all other sellers of victuals whatsoever shall be bound to sell such
victuals for a reasonable price, regard being had to the price at which
such victuals are sold in the neighbouring places; so that such sellers
have a moderate profit and not excessive, as shall be reasonably
required by the distance of the places wherefrom such victuals are
carried; and if any man sell such victuals otherwise and be convicted
thereof in the form aforesaid, he shall pay the double of that which he
shall receive to him that suffered loss, or, for lack of such, to him
who will prosecute in this behalf; and the mayor and bailiffs of cities
and boroughs, market and other towns, and ports and places by the sea,
shall have power to enquire of all and singular who in any wise
transgress against this ordinance, at the penalty aforesaid to be levied
to the use of those at whose suit such transgressors shall be convicted:
and in case the same mayor and bailiffs shall neglect to execute the
premises and shall be convicted hereof before the justices appointed by
us, then the same mayor and bailiffs shall be compelled by the same
justices to pay to such as suffered loss, or, for lack of him, to any
other prosecuting, threefold the value of the thing so sold, and none
the less shall incur grievous punishment at our hands.

And because many sturdy beggars, so long as they can live by begging for
alms, refuse to labour, living in idleness and sin and sometimes by
thefts and other crimes, no man, under the aforesaid penalty of
imprisonment, shall presume under colour of pity or alms to give
anything to such as shall be able profitably to labour, or to cherish
them in their sloth, that so they may be compelled to labour for the
necessaries of life.

We order you, straitly enjoining upon you, that you cause all and
singular the premises to be publicly proclaimed and kept in the cities,
boroughs and market towns, seaports and other places in your bailiwick
where you deem expedient, as well within liberties as without, and due
execution to be made thereof, as is aforesaid; and that in no wise you
omit this, as you love us and the common utility of our realm and will
save yourself harmless. Witness the King at Westminster, the eighteenth
day of June. By the King himself and the whole council.

The like writs are directed to the several sheriffs throughout England.

The King to the venerable father in Christ, W. by the same grace bishop
of Winchester, greeting. Because a great part of the people, etc., as
above, as far as "to labour for the necessaries of life," and then thus:
and therefore we request you that you cause the premises to be
proclaimed in the several churches and other places of your diocese
where you shall deem expedient; commanding rectors, vicars of such
churches, ministers and other your subjects that by salutary warnings
they beseech and persuade their parishioners to labour and to keep the
ordinances aforesaid, as instant necessity demands; and that you
constrain the wage-earning chaplains of your said diocese, who, as is
said, refuse in like manner to serve without excessive salary, and
compel them, under penalty of suspension and interdict, to serve for the
accustomed salary, as is expedient; and that you in no wise omit this as
you love us and the common utility of our said realm. Witness as above.

By the King himself and the whole council.

The like letters of request are directed to the several bishops of
England and to the guardian of the archbishopric of Canterbury, the see
being vacant, under the same date.

[Footnote 213: Printed in Putnam _op. cit., p._ 8*, Appendix.]


13. PRESENTMENTS MADE BEFORE THE JUSTICES OF LABOURERS[214] [_Assize
Roll, 267, mm. 1, 8_], 1351. Hundred of Chelmsford.

The twelve [jurors] present that Arnulph le Hierde of Maldon, late
servant of John Dodebroke from Michaelmas, 24 Edward III, until
Michaelmas next following, 25 Edward III, for one year and for a quarter
of a year next following and for the whole of that time, the said
Arnulph took a quarter of wheat for twelve weeks and 5s. a year for his
stipend. Further, he took from the feast of St. Peter's Chains until
Christmas in the same time 10s. beyond that which he took above; and
hereupon the said Arnulph withdrew from his service before the end of
the term, to the damage of the said John of 40s., against the Statute,
etc....

_Trespass._--Further, they present that Robert Grys of Danbury, potter,
makes brass pots and sells them at threefold the price which he used [to
take], against the Statute, etc., in oppression of the people.

_Trespass._--Further, they say that John Sextayn the younger, tailor,
John Banestrat, tailor, Roger atte Tye of Great Baddow, take salaries
for their labours from divers folk against the Statute, etc., and this
threefold that which they used to take.

_Trespass._--Further, they say that William Denk, servant of Geoffrey le
Smyth, took from the said Geoffrey 20s. a year, and is at his table, and
was sworn before John de Sutton and his fellows to serve according to
the Statute, etc., where he should not take but 8s., etc....

_Trespass._--Further, they present that Richard Smyth of Great Baddow
commonly takes for his work double that which he used to take, against
the Statute.

_Trespass._--Further, they present that John Plukkerose, William Smyth
of Danbury and William Molt, shoemakers, of Great Baddow, make shoes and
sell them at almost double the price which they used [to take], against
the Statute, etc., in oppression of the people.

_Trespass._--Further, they say that Alan son of Sayer Banstrat of Great
Baddow, sawyer, will not serve unless he take for his salary as much as
two others take, against the Statute, etc., in oppression of the
people....

Grand Inquisition.

_Trespass._--Further, they present that John Galion, vicar of Nazeing,
will not minister to any the sacrament of marriage unless he have from
each man 5s. or 6s., and in this manner by extortion the said John has
taken from John Wakerild 4s. 1Od., from William Gurteber 5s., from John
Mabely 9s., and from many others to the sum of 20s., in oppression of
the people by tort and against the peace....

_Trespass._--Further, they present that John Hindercle took for stipend
from the rector of Parndon for the time of August this year 10s. against
the Statute.

Further, they present that John Hindercle, William Pourche, are butchers
and forestallers of victuals, against the Statute.

[Footnote 214: Printed in Putnam, _op. cit., p._ 169*, Appendix.]


14. EXCESSIVE PRICES CHARGED BY CRAFTSMEN [_King's Bench, Ancient
Indictments, 38, m. 22d._] 1354.

Further they [the jurors] say that dyers, drapers and tanners are
dwelling in the town of Ware, where they were not wont to be, but within
the borough of Hertford, to the grave damage of the lord the King and
the lady Queen Isabel, lady of the same town of Hertford, and of the
whole commonalty of the town of Hertford aforesaid, and against the
liberty of the aforesaid Queen, and that the same dyers and tanners use
their craft in too excessive wise, to wit, the aforesaid dyers take for
a cloth sometimes half a mark, sometimes 40d. and sometimes more, where
they were wont to take for a cloth 6d. only, and the aforesaid tanners
buy oxhides and divers other hides at a low price and refuse to sell
them unless they gain on the sale fourfold, to the greatest oppression
and damage of the whole people.


15. FINES LEVIED FOR EXCESSIVE WAGES, 25 EDWARD III[_Exch. K.R.
Estreats_, 11, 2], 1351.

Layer de la Hay.

  From Simon Meller for his excess                          40d.
  From Robert Throstle for the same                          6d.
  From Thomas Poggill for the same                          12d.
  From Roger Bollok for the same                            12d.
  From Geoffrey Edmund for the same                          6d.
  From Richard Tailliour for the same                        2s.
  From Alice Smyth for the same                              6d.
  From John Smart for the same                              12d.
  From Margaret Everard for the same                        12d.
  From Alice Gerlond for the same                           12d.
  From Alice Weper for the same                              6d.
  From Agnes Heyward for the same                           12d.
  From John Crawe for the same                               6d.
  From Christina Bostis for the same                         6d.
  From Richard Cook for the same                            12d.
  From Edmund atte Well for the same                         6d.
  From Walter Bilet for the same                             6d.
  From Geoffrey Sloman for the same                          6d.

                                    Sum,               16s. 10d. Proved


16. WRIT TO ENFORCE PAYMENT OF EXCESS OF WAGES TO THE COLLECTORS OF A
SUBSIDY [_Close Roll, 24 Edward III, p. l, m. 6d._], 1350.

The King to his beloved and trusty Walter de Mauny and his fellows, our
justices appointed to hear and determine divers trespasses and certain
other things contained in our commission made to you, in the county of
Northampton, greeting. Whereas lately it was ordained by us and our
council that servants, as well men as women, should be bound to serve
and should receive only the salaries and wages which used to be offered
in the places where they ought to serve in the twentieth year of our
reign over England or the five or six common years next preceding, and
that all and singular such servants, workmen and artificers ... taking
more ... be assessed at the whole additional sum which they shall
receive ... and the whole additional sum so received be levied and
collected from every of them to our use in relief of the singular towns
to which the said artificers, servants and workmen belong, and in aid of
payment of the sums at which the same towns or the men thereof are
assessed for the tenth and fifteenth now current ...: you, nevertheless,
... attempt to cause such excesses of wages, liveries, hires and
salaries ... with the fines made before you ... to be enrolled on your
rolls and levied to our use, against the intent of that agreement, as by
complaint of the people it has been given us to understand: We ...
command you to compel all and singular artificers, servants and workmen,
as well men as women, of whatsoever condition they be, convicted or
hereafter to be convicted before you of such excessive salaries,
liveries, hires or stipends whatsoever received by them in the aforesaid
county, as well by imprisonment of their bodies as in other lawful
manner which shall seem good to you in this behalf, to pay without delay
that which they have so received in excess to the subtaxers and
subcollectors of the singular towns to which the same artificers,
servants and workmen belong, in aid of payment of the tenth and
fifteenth aforesaid, according to the agreement abovesaid. Provided that
the fines made or to be made therefor, and other things belonging to us
therefrom, be converted to our use, as is just.

Witness the King at Westminster, 12 June.

By the council


17. APPLICATION OF FINES FOR EXCESSIVE WAGES TO THE SUBSIDY OF A
FIFTEENTH [_Subsidy Roll_, 107, 41.], 1351-2.

Hundred of Winstree.

From the town of East Mersea, 46s. 4-3/4d., from fines of workmen of the
same town.

From the towns of West Mersea and Fingringhoe, 4l. 8s. 11-3/4d., from
fines of workmen of the same town (_sic_).

From the towns of Peldon and Abberton, 44s. 7-1/2d., from fines of
workmen of the same town _(sic_).

From the towns of Wigborough, Great and Little, 62s. 2d., whereof the
fifteenth is 12d., the fines of workmen 61s. 2d.

From the town of Layer de la Hay, 32s. 9-3/4d., whereof the fifteenth is
2s. 9-3/4d., the fines of workmen 30s.

From the town of Layer Breton with Salcott, Virley, 46s. 6d. whereof the
fifteenth is 16s. 6d., the fines of workmen 30s.

From the town of Layer Marney, 28s. 7-1/4d., whereof the fifteenth is
18s. 7-1/4d., the fines of workmen 10s.; whereof, of the fifteenth, the
goods of Robert de Marny[215] in the same town [contribute] 10s.

From the town of Langenhoe, 40s. 1d., from the excess of fines of
workmen of the same towns (_sic_).

Sum of this hundred, 19l. 10s. 2d., whereof from the fifteenth [arises]
38s. 11d.. from fines of workmen 17l. 11s. 3d.[216]

[Footnote 215: His lands were for the time being in the King's hand as
an escheat.]

[Footnote 216: Note that in half the towns in this hundred the
inhabitants' share of the subsidy is wholly covered by the fines. The
ordinance and statute were enforced in Essex more severely than
elsewhere.]


18. LABOUR LEGISLATION; THE STATUTE OF 12 RICHARD II. [_Statute Roll, 2,
mm. 13, 12_], 1388.[217]

_c._ 3. Further it is agreed and assented that all the Statutes of
artificers, labourers, servants and victuallers made as well in the time
of our lord the King that now is as in the time of his noble
grandfather, whom God assoil, not repealed, be straitly holden and kept
and duly executed, and that the said artificers, labourers, servants
and victuallers be duly judged by the justices of the peace as well at
the suit of the King as of the party, according as the said Statutes
require; and that the mayors, bailiffs, and stewards of lords and
constables of towns duly do their offices touching such artificers,
servants, labourers, and victuallers, and that stocks be in every town
for the punishment of the same servants and labourers, as is ordained in
the Statutes aforesaid. And furthermore it is ordained and assented that
no servant or labourer, be it man or woman, depart at the end of his
term out of the hundred, rape or wapentake where he is dwelling, to
serve or dwell elsewhere, or by colour of going afar on pilgrimage,
unless he carry a letter patent containing the cause of his going and
the time of his return, if he ought to return, under the King's seal
that shall be assigned hereto and delivered into the keeping of some
good man of the hundred or hundreds, rape or wapentake, city and
borough, who shall keep the same according to the discretion of the
justices of the peace, and lawfully make such letters when need be, and
in no other wise on his oath, and that around the said seal be written
the name of the county and across the said seal the name of the said
hundred, rape, wapentake, city or borough; and if any servant or
labourer be found in a city, borough or elsewhere, coming from any
place, wandering without such letter, he shall be taken forthwith by the
said mayors, bailiffs, stewards or constables and put in the stocks and
kept until he have found surety to return to his service or to serve or
labour in the town from which he comes, until he have such letter for
departing with reasonable cause; and be it remembered that a servant or
labourer may freely depart from his service at the end of his term and
serve elsewhere, so that he be in certainty with whom, and have such
letter as above; but it is not the intent of this ordinance that
servants who ride or go on the business of their lords or masters be
comprehended within this ordinance during the time of the same business;
and if any carry such letter which can be found to be forged or false,
he shall go to prison for forty days for the falsity, and further until
he have found surety to return and serve and labour as aforesaid. And
that none receive a servant or labourer going forth from their hundreds,
rape, wapentake, city or borough, without letter testimonial or with a
letter, for more than one night, unless it be by reason of illness or
other reasonable cause, or unless he will and can serve and labour there
by the same testimony, on a penalty to be limited by the justices of the
peace; and that as well artificers and craftsmen as servants and
apprentices, who are not of great account and of whose craft or mistery
men have no great need in time of harvest, be forced to serve in harvest
at cutting, gathering and bringing in the corn; and that this statute be
duly executed by mayors, bailiffs, stewards and constables of towns on a
penalty to be limited and adjudged by the said justices of the peace in
their sessions, and that none take above 1d. for making, sealing and
delivering the said letter.

_c._ 4. And furthermore, because servants and labourers will not and for
long time have not been willing to serve and labour without outrageous
and excessive hire and much greater than has been given to such servants
and labourers in any time past, so that for dearth of the said labourers
and servants, husbandmen and tenants of land cannot pay their rents or
hardly live on their lands,[218] to the exceeding great damage and loss
as well of the lords as of the whole commons; and also because the wages
of the said labourers and servants have not been put in certainty before
these times; it is agreed and assented that the bailiff for husbandry
take 13s. 4d. a year and his clothing once a year at most, the master
hind 10s., the carter 10s., the shepherd 10s., the ox-herd 6s. 8d., the
cow-herd 6s. 8d., the swineherd 6s., the woman labourer 6s., the
dairymaid 6s., the ploughman 7s. at most, and every other labourer and
servant according to his degree, and less in the country where less is
wont to be given, without clothing, bounty (_curtoisie_) or other reward
by covenant.[219] And that no servant of artificers or victuallers
within cities, boroughs or other towns take more than the labourers and
servants above named according to their estate, without clothing, bounty
or other reward by covenant, as is said above. And if any give or take
by covenant more than is specified above, at the first time that they
shall be attainted thereof they shall pay, as well the givers as the
takers, the value of the excess so given or taken, and at the second
time of their attainder, double the value of such excess, and at the
third time treble the value of such excess; and if the taker so
attainted have nothing wherewith to pay the said excess, he shall go to
prison for forty days.

_c._ 5. Further it is ordained and assented that he or she who is
employed in labouring at the plough and cart or other labour or service
of husbandry until they be of the age of 12 years shall remain
thenceforward at that labour without being put to a mistery or craft;
and if any covenant or bond of apprentice be made henceforth to the
contrary it shall be holden for nought.

_c._ 6. Further, it is agreed and assented that no servant of husbandry
or labourer or servant of an artificer or victualler carry henceforward
baslard, dagger or sword, on pain of forfeiture of the same, except in
time of war for defence of the realm, and then by survey of the arrayers
for the time being, or when travelling through the country with their
masters or on a message of their masters; but such servants and
labourers shall have bows and arrows and use them on Sundays and feast
days, and entirely forsake games of ball as well hand as foot and the
other games called quoits, dice, casting the stone, skittles and other
such unsuitable games; and that the sheriffs, mayors, bailiffs and
constables have power to arrest and do arrest all the contraveners
hereof and the baslards, daggers and swords aforesaid, and to seize and
keep the said baslards, daggers and swords until the session of the
justices of the peace, and present them before the said justices in
their sessions together with the names of those who carried them. And it
is not the King's intent that prejudice be done to the franchises of
lords touching the forfeitures due to them.

_c._ 7. Further, it is agreed and assented that touching every man who
goes begging and is able to serve or labour, it be done with him as with
him who departs out of hundreds and other places aforesaid without a
letter testimonial, as is said above, excepting people of religion and
hermits approved, having letters testimonial of the ordinaries. And that
beggars unable to serve remain in the cities and towns where they are
dwelling at the time of the proclamation of this Statute; and that if
the people of the said cities or towns will not or cannot suffice to
find them, the said beggars withdraw to the other towns within the
hundred, rape or wapentake, or to the towns where they were born, within
forty days after the said proclamation be made, and dwell there
continually for their lives. And that with all those who go on
pilgrimage as beggars and are able to labour it be done as with the said
servants and labourers, if they have not letters testimonial of their
pilgrimage under the seals aforesaid. And that the clerks of the
Universities who go begging thus have letters testimonial of their
chancellor on the same penalty.

_c._ 8. Further, it is ordained and assented that those who feign
themselves to be men that have travelled out of the realm and have been
there imprisoned carry letters testimonial of the captains where they
have dwelt, or of the mayors and bailiffs where they make their landing,
and that the same mayors and bailiffs enquire of such folk where they
have dwelt and with whom and in what place is their dwelling in England;
and that the same mayors and bailiffs make them a letter patent under
the seal of their office testifying the day of their landing and where
they have been, as they have said; and that the said mayors and bailiffs
make them swear to keep their right way to their country, unless they
have a letter patent under the King's great seal to do otherwise. And
that if any such travelled man be found without such letter, it be done
with him as with the servants and labourers aforesaid; and this
ordinance shall be applied to travelled men who go begging through the
country after their landing.

_c._ 9. Further it is ordained and assented that the aforesaid
ordinances of servants and labourers, beggars and vagrants, hold good
and be executed as well in cities and boroughs as in other towns and
places within the realm, as well within franchise as without. And that
the sheriffs, mayors and bailiffs and keepers of gaols shall be bound
and charged to receive the said servants, labourers, beggars and
vagrants, and to detain them in prison in the form aforesaid, without
letting them to mainprise or bail and without taking fee or aught else
from them by themselves or by others, as long as they be thus in prison
or at their entry in or issue from the same prison, on pain of paying
100s. to the King.

_c._ 10. Further, it is ordained and assented that in every commission
of the justices of the peace there be assigned only six justices beside
the justices of assize, and that the said six justices hold their
sessions in every quarter of the year at least, and this for three days
if need be, on pain of being punished according to the advice of the
King's council at the suit of every man who will make plaint, and
enquire diligently, among other things touching their offices, if the
said mayors, bailiffs, stewards and constables and also gaolers have
duly made execution of the said ordinances and statutes of servants and
labourers, beggars and vagrants, and punish those who are punishable by
the said penalty of 100s. on the same penalty, and punish at their
discretion those who are found in fault who are not punishable by the
said penalty; and that every of the said justices take for his wages 4s.
a day for the time of their said sessions, and their clerk 2s. a day,
from the fines and amercements arising and forthcoming from the same
sessions, by the hands of the sheriffs; and that the lords of franchises
be contributors to the said wages according to the proportion of their
part of the fines and amercements aforesaid; and that no steward of a
lord be assigned in any of the said commissions, and that no association
be made to the said justices of the peace[220] after their first
commission. And it is not the intent of this statute that the justices
of the one Bench and of the other and the serjeants at law, in case they
be named in the said commissions, be bound by force of this statute to
hold the said sessions four times a year as are the other commissioners,
who are continually dwelling in the country, but that they do it when
they can well attend hereto.

[Footnote 217: This statute is perhaps the most important of all the
enactments relating to labourers between the Black Death and the reign
of Elizabeth. It distinguishes between the impotent poor and the
able-bodied vagabonds, and, besides establishing Quarter sessions, and
fixing maximum wages, is the basis of all subsequent Vagrancy and Poor
Law legislation. For printed text see Statutes of the Realm, Vol II.,
56-59.]

[Footnote 218: It is the small man, as well as the great lord, who is
injured by the wage-labourers' demands.]

[Footnote 219: Compare the wages here allowed with those set out below,
No. 19.]

[Footnote 220: _i.e._ No additions made to the commission.]


19. LABOUR LEGISLATION; A BILL IN PARLIAMENT, 23 HENRY VI [_Rot. Parl.
23 Henry VI, m. 4, No. 19_], 1444-5.

Prayen the Commons of this present Parliament that where the common
people of this realm is greatly annoyed because of sudden departing of
servants of husbandry from their masters at the end of their terms
without due warning made unto their said masters, where if such warning
were had they might be purveyed of other servants against the end of
their term, and also because that justices of peace many times by
favour, prayer or commandment, set so little and so easy fines upon
such as be convict before them, that many dread not the execution of the
law but greatly are emboldened to offend:

That it like the King our Sovereign Lord to ordain by authority of this
present Parliament that every servant of husbandry purposing to depart
from his master at the end of his term, at the middle of his term or
else before make covenant with another man to serve him for the next
year, if he be in such case as the law will compel him to serve, the
same covenant to be made in the presence of the constables of the towns
where such servants at that time be in service; and that the said
servant and he that shall so make covenant with him, in presence of the
said constables, at the middle of the said term or before, warn the
master of the said servant of the said covenant so newly made, so that
the same master may purvey him another servant against the end of his
term; and if any covenant with any such servant be made in other wise,
or that such warning in manner and form abovesaid be not had, the same
covenant be void, and the said servant be compelled to serve his former
master still for the next year, but if[221] any lawful and reasonable
cause being of later time shall require the contrary; also that the
salaries and wages of servants, labourers and artificers, exceed not the
assessing that followeth, that is to say, the salary of a bailiff of
husbandry by year 23s. 4d. and clothing price of 5s. with meat and
drink; of a chief hind, a carter, a chief shepherd, 20s. and clothing
price of 4s. with meat and drink; a common servant of husbandry 15s. and
clothing price of 40d.; a woman servant 10s. and clothing price of 4s.
with meat and drink; a child within age of 14 years 6s. and clothing
price of 3s. with meat and drink; the same form be observed of salaries
of servants with hostlers, victuallers and artificers in cities,
boroughs, and elsewhere being, and such as less deserve, less to take,
and also in places where less is used to be given, less to be given
hereafter. And that from the feast of Easter unto Michaelmas the wages
of any freemason or master carpenter exceed not by the day 4d. with meat
and drink, and without meat and drink 5-1/2d.; a master tiler or slater,
rough mason and mean carpenter and other artificers concerning building,
by the day 3d. with meat and drink, and without meat and drink 4-1/2d.;
and every other labourer by the day 2d. with meat and drink, and
without meat and drink 3-1/2d. And from the feast of Michaelmas unto
Easter a freemason and a master carpenter by the day 3d. with meat and
drink, and without meat and drink 4-1/2d.; tiler, mean carpenter, rough
mason and other artificers aforesaid, by the day 2-1/2d. with meat and
drink, and without meat and drink 4d.; and every other workman and
labourer by the day 1-1/2d. with meat and drink, and without meat and
drink 3d.; and who that less deserves, to take less; provided that the
said assessing extend not to labourers in time of harvest about harvest
labour, in which the wages of a mower exceed not by the day 4d. with
meat and drink, and without meat and drink 6d.; a man reaper or carter
3d. by the day with meat and drink, and without meat and drink 5d.; a
woman labourer and other labourers in harvest by the day 2-1/2d. with
meat and drink, and without meat and drink 4-1/2d.; and such as are
worth less, less to take, and in places where less is used to be taken,
less be taken hereafter; and that no artificer, workman or labourer take
anything for any holiday nor for no workday, except after the rate of
the time of the day in which he labours; and if any person refuse to
serve or labour according to the premises, that every justice of the
peace in their shires have power at every time to call them to
examination thereof, and such as they find defective to commit to
prison, there to abide till they have found surety sufficient to serve
and labour in form by law required; and if any servant, artificer,
workman or labourer, do contrary to the premises or deny his service,
occupation or labour, by reason of no giving wages or salaries contrary
to this statute, that he lose to the party that will sue in this part
20s.; and that the givers of excessive salaries or wages run in the same
pain ...

Further, that the justices of peace assess no fine upon any that shall
be convict before them of things done against any Statute of Labourers
or Artificers or by that cause shall put him in the King's grace,
beneath 3s. 4d. ...[222]

[Footnote 221: _i.e._ Unless.]

[Footnote 222: This bill became a Statute (_Stat._ 23 _Henry VI. c._
12).]


20. ORGANISATION OF THE STAPLE[223] [_Patent Roll_,6 _Edward II, p._ 2,
_m._ 5], 1313.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. Know ye that whereas before
these times divers damages and grievances in many ways have befallen the
merchants of our realm, not without damage to our progenitors, sometime
Kings of England, and to us, because merchants, as well denizen as
alien, buying wools and woolfells within the realm aforesaid and our
power, have gone at their pleasure with the same wools and fells, to
sell them, to divers places within the lands of Brabant, Flanders and
Artois: We, wishing to prevent such damages and grievances and to
provide as well as we may for the advantage of us and our merchants of
the realm aforesaid, do will and by our council ordain, to endure for
ever, that merchants denizen and alien, buying such wools and fells
within the realm and power aforesaid and wishing to take the same to the
aforesaid lands to sell there, shall take those wools and fells or cause
them to be taken to a fixed staple to be ordained and assigned within
any of the same lands by the mayor and community of the said merchants
of our realm, and to be changed as and when they shall deem expedient,
and not to other places in those lands in any wise: granting to the said
mayor and merchants of our realm aforesaid, for us and our heirs, that
the mayor and council of the same merchants for the time being may
impose upon all merchants, denizen and alien, who shall contravene the
said ordinance and shall be reasonably convicted thereof by the
aforesaid mayor and council of the said merchants, certain money
penalties for those offences, and that such money penalties, whereof we
or our ministers shall be informed by the aforesaid mayor, shall be
levied to our use from the goods and wares of merchants so offending,
wheresoever they shall be found within the realm and power aforesaid, by
our ministers, according to the information aforesaid and the assessment
thereof to be made by the mayor himself, saving always to the said mayor
and merchants that of themselves they may reasonably chastise and punish
offending merchants, if their goods and wares chance to be found in the
staple aforesaid outside our realm and power aforesaid, without
interference or hindrance on the part of us or our heirs or our
ministers whomsoever, as they have hitherto been wont to do. In witness
whereof etc. Witness the King at Canterbury, 20 May.

By the King himself.

[Footnote 223: This document, afterwards referred to as the Staplers'
charter (_cf Patent Roll_, _13 Edward II, m. 19 d_), contains the
earliest reference in the English records to an organised body of wool
merchants with a mayor and council; it is clear from the last words of
the ordinance that both Staple and Staplers were older than the royal
interest in them.]


21. ARGUMENTS FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF HOME STAPLE TOWNS [_Exch. K.R.
Accounts_, 457, 32.], 1319.

London. Whereas our lord the King by his writ has signified to us that
in particular in his Parliament last holden at York debate was raised
touching the establishment of certain places within his realm whereat
sales and purchases of wools should be made and not elsewhere; which
business (which should turn to the profit of our said lord and of the
people of his realm) and also the fixing of the places most convenient
herefor, through certain disturbances,[224] remained undetermined; and
signified also that divers moneys counterfeiting the coin of our said
lord are brought by foreign people into his realm to the subversion of
his money and to the prejudice of our said lord; whereon our lord the
King wishes to have our advice and counsel; we do him to wit that in
full treaty and discussion with divers merchants, citizens and burgesses
of the realm, we have agreed, if it please our lord the King, that there
be two places established for the said sales and purchases, namely, one
on this side Trent, and another beyond, which places should fulfil the
conditions below-written, that is to say, the places should be strong,
well situated and secure for the repair of foreign merchants and the
safety of their persons and their goods, and there should be ready
access for all manner of merchandise, an exchange good, easy and prompt,
and a good and convenient haven in the same places; and that the law and
usages and franchises, which merchants repairing to the Staple in these
times have had and used, they should use and enjoy henceforth at the
places where they shall be, without being drawn into another law or
another custom; and that the foreigners who shall come to the said
places go not further in the realm nor send privily or openly by any
manner of people to make any purchase of wools elsewhere than at the
places established; and hereby the towns of our said lord which are now
decayed and impoverished will be restored and enriched. If it be
established in the form above written, it will befal to the great
profit of our lord the King and of all his realm; principally, by the
security of the persons and goods of merchants and other people of the
realm, whom in these times death, robberies and other damages without
number have in large measure befallen; and also by the increase of the
profit of the change of our lord through the plate and bullion which
shall be brought there; and also by the drawing of all manner of
merchants and their merchandise that shall come there; moreover, owing
to the great treasure of the goods of England that is and remains in the
power of aliens, tort, trespass, robberies, and homicide cannot be
readily redressed nor rightly punished in our parts on this side the sea
for fear of the persons and goods which the aliens have in their
power[225], whereby they are enriched and emboldened to maintain the
mortal enemies of the King, and comfort them with people, arms and
victuals; and by the ordinance aforesaid the merchants and the people of
our said lord, to whom he can resort when need be, will be enriched, and
the enemies of the King impoverished and all alien merchants in his
subjection, and other profits without number will arise, which we cannot
by any means fully show forth. With regard to money, if it please our
lord, let it not be suffered to be brought from the parts beyond the
sea, save only gold, plate and bullion; and to do away with the
counterfeit money current among the good, wheresoever it be found, let
it be pierced and sent to the change.[226]

[Footnote 224: The struggle with Thomas, earl of Lancaster.]

[Footnote 225: _i.e._, through fear of malicious reprisals abroad; it is
urged apparently that by the establishment of staples at home English
merchants will stay in the realm and enjoy the profits of commerce
without undertaking the risks. The policy of exclusive home staples was
thrice attempted without success, in 1326, 1332 and 1353.]

[Footnote 226: Endorsed is a list of counties whose representatives
agree to the foregoing advice, namely, Middlesex, Essex, Hertford,
Buckingham, Bedford, Oxford, Berks, Gloucester, Hereford, Worcester,
Salop, Stafford, Chester and Warwick, together with London and Stamford.

The arguments presented above were the outcome of a conference between
the council, and representatives of cities and boroughs and of the
merchants throughout the realm. See Eng. Hist. Rev., Jan. 1914.]


22. ORDINANCES OF THE STAPLE [_Patent Roll_, _19 Edward II, p. 2, m.
8_], 1326.

Edward, etc., to the mayor of our city of London, greeting. We command
you, straitly enjoining, that the things below written, ordained by us
and our council for the common profit and relief of the people of all
our realm and power, you cause to be proclaimed and published and
straitly kept and observed in our city aforesaid and everywhere in your
bailiwick.

First, that the staple of the merchants and the merchandise of England,
Ireland and Wales, namely, of wools, hides, woolfells and tin, be holden
in the same lands and nowhere else, and that too in the places below
written, that is to say, at Newcastle upon Tyne, York, Lincoln, Norwich,
London, Winchester, Exeter, and Bristol, for England, Dublin, Drogheda
and Cork, for Ireland, Shrewsbury, Carmarthen and Cardiff, for Wales.
And for the tin of Cornwall, at Lostwithiel and Truro. And for the tin
of Devonshire, at Ashburton, and not elsewhere in England, Ireland or
Wales.

And that all alien people there and not elsewhere in England, Ireland or
Wales, may freely buy and seek wools, hides and fells and other
merchandise, and tin in Ashburton, Lostwithiel and Truro, and not
elsewhere, and when they have bought their merchandise at the said
places and in the form abovesaid and paid their customs, and have
thereon letters sealed with the seal of the cocket[227], they may carry
the said wools, hides, fells, tin and other merchandise into what land
soever they will, if it be not into a land that is at war or enmity with
us or our realm. And that the merchant strangers be warned hereof.

And that no alien by himself or another privily or openly may buy
elsewhere wools or other merchandise abovesaid except at the said
places, upon forfeiture of the wools or other merchandise abovesaid
which he shall have so bought.

And that the merchants of England, Ireland and Wales, who wish to carry
wools, hides, fells or tin out of the staples to be sold elsewhere, may
not carry them from the staples out of our power until they have
remained fifteen days at any of the staples to sell them, and then they
may go with the said merchandise whither they will, without making or
holding a staple anywhere out of the said lands or within the said lands
elsewhere than at the places abovesaid.

And that all people of England, Ireland and Wales, may sell and buy
wools and all other merchandise anywhere that they will in the said
lands, so that the sale be not made to aliens except at the staple. And
that wools, hides, fells and tin be nowhere carried out of the said
lands by aliens or denizens except from the staples aforesaid.

And that the merchants of our power make not among themselves any
conspiracy or compact to lessen the price of wools or other merchandise
abovesaid, or to delay merchant strangers in the purchase or sale of
their merchandise, and that those who shall do so and can be attainted
hereof be heavily punished according to the ordinance of us and of our
good council. And that every man be admitted on our behalf who will sue
to attaint and punish such, and that such suit be made before our Chief
Justices or others whom we will assign hereto and not elsewhere. And
that the merchants and the people of Gascony and of the duchy of
Aquitaine, who now are or for the time shall be of the fealty and
obedience of us or of our son and heir[228], be holden as denizens and
not as aliens in all these affairs.

And that all merchants, native and strangers, be subject to the law
merchant in all things that touch trafficking at the places of the
staples.

And that no man or woman of a borough or city, nor the commons of the
people outside a borough or city in England, Ireland or Wales, after
Christmas next coming, use cloth of their own buying that shall be
bought after the said feast of Christmas, unless it be cloth made in
England, Ireland or Wales, upon heavy forfeiture and punishment, as we
by our good council will ordain hereon. And be it known that by the
commons in this case shall be understood all people except the King and
Queen, earls and barons, knights and ladies and their children born in
wedlock, archbishops and bishops and other persons and people of Holy
Church, and seculars, who can spend yearly from their rents 40l.
sterling, and this so long as it please us by our good council further
to extend this ordinance and prohibition.

And that every man and woman of England, Ireland and Wales, may make
cloths as long and as short as they shall please.

And that people may have the greater will to work upon the making of
cloth in England, Ireland and Wales, we will that all people know that
we shall grant suitable franchises to fullers, weavers, dyers and other
clothworkers who live mainly by this craft, when such franchises be
asked of us.

And that it be granted to the wool-merchants that they have a mayor of
the staples abovesaid.

And that all merchant strangers may have the greater will to come into
our power and may the more safely stay and return, we take them, their
persons and goods, into our protection. And we forbid, upon heavy
forfeiture, that anyone do them wrong or injury in person or goods,
while they be coming, staying or returning, so that if anyone do them
injury contrary to this protection and prohibition, those of the town to
which the evildoers shall belong shall be bound to answer for the
damages or for the persons of the evildoers, and that the mayor or
bailiffs of the town where the shipping is take surety for which they
will answer at their peril from the sailors of the same shipping every
time that they shall go out of the havens, that they will not do evil or
misbehave towards any man contrary to these articles.

In witness whereof we have caused these our letters to be sealed with
our seal. Given at Kenilworth, 1 May.

[Footnote 227: The seal used by the customers.]

[Footnote 228: Prince Edward was created duke of Aquitaine on September
10, 1325. _Pat. 19 Edward II, p. 1, m. 25._]


23. THE ELECTION OF THE MAYOR AND CONSTABLES OF A STAPLE TOWN [_Chancery
Files_, 582], 1358.

To the reverend father in Christ William by divine permission bishop of
Winchester and Chancellor of the illustrious lord the King of England
and France, his humble mayor and constables and the whole community of
merchants of the staple of the lord the King at Westminster, greeting
with all reverence and honour. Let your reverend lordship deign to know
that on the feast of the Translation of St. Thomas the Martyr[229] in
the 32nd year of the reign of the aforesaid lord the King of England
after the Conquest, all the merchants, as well alien as denizen, who
frequent the said staple, being assembled for the election of a mayor
and constables of the same staple for the coming year, as custom is,
beginning at the feast of St. Peter's Chains[230] next coming, with
unanimous assent and consent we elected Adam Fraunceys to be mayor, and
John Pyel and John Tornegeld to be constables of the staple aforesaid
for the coming year. May your lordship fare well through time to come.
Given in the said staple of Westminster the last day of July in the 32nd
year of the reign of King Edward the Third after the Conquest of
England[231].

[Footnote 229: July 7.]

[Footnote 230: August 1.]

[Footnote 231: Ratified by the Crown on July 16 (_Pat. Supp._, 22 _m._
12).]


24. ROYAL LETTERS PATENT OVERRULED BY THE CUSTOM OF THE STAPLE [_Early
Chancery Proceedings, 11, 289_], _c._ 1436.

To the reverend father in God the Bishop of Bath, Chancellor of England.

Meekly beseecheth your servant, Hugh Dyke, that whereas our lord the
King on the second day of December in the fourteenth year of his reign,
considering the great kindness which the said Hugh, William Estfield and
Hammond Sutton did to him, and specially for that they then granted to
lend to our said lord the King the sum of 8,000 marks, and our said lord
the King wishing graciously to favour the same William, Hammond and Hugh
in this behalf, by his letters patent, by the advice and assent of his
council in his Parliament, granted and gave license to the same William,
Hammond and Hugh, that in the sale of their wools at the town of Calais
they should be preferred before all other merchants there to the value
of the sum aforesaid, and that they and every of them, or others in
their name whom the said William, Hammond and Hugh would name hereto,
might freely sell their wools aforesaid to the value aforesaid within
your said town to what person soever and in what manner soever they
should wish, before the other merchants aforesaid, and retain by them
the sums forthcoming thence without any restriction or partition to be
made thereof in the Staple of Calais among the merchants of the same,
any statute or ordinance made to the contrary notwithstanding, as is
more fully contained in the said letters; and although one Thomas
Ketyll, servant to the said Hugh, at the commandment and will of his
master, sold a sarpler of wool to a stranger for the sum of 12l. 5s., to
have and enjoy to him without any restriction or partition to be made
thereof, as parcel of the sum aforesaid, nevertheless Thomas Thurland of
Calais, because the said Thomas Ketyll would not deliver the said sum of
12l. 5s. to put the same in partition in the Staple, put him in prison
and detained him for a long time contrary to the tenour of the letters
aforesaid to the prejudice of our lord the King and the great damage and
loss of the said Hugh and Thomas Ketyll. Wherefore please it your benign
grace to grant a writ of _subpoena_ directed to the said Thomas
Thurland to appear before you in the Chancery of our lord the King upon
pain of 30l. to answer as well our lord the King as the said Hugh and
Thomas Ketyll touching the premises, and to do right to the parties, by
way of charity.


25. PROHIBITION OF EXPORT OF MATERIALS FOR MAKING CLOTH [_Guildhall,
Letter-Book E, f. 167_],[232] 1326.

Edward by the grace of God, King of England, etc., to our well-beloved
Hamon de Chigewelle, Mayor of our city of London, greeting. We have read
the letters that you have sent us, in the which you have signified unto
us that Flemings, Brabanters and other aliens have been suddenly buying
throughout our land all the teasels that they can find; and also are
buying butter, madder, woad, fullers' earth, and all other things which
pertain to the working of cloth, in order that they may disturb the
staple and the common profit of our realm; and further, that you have
stopped twenty tuns that were shipped and ready for going beyond sea, at
the suit of good folks of our said city; upon your doing the which we do
congratulate you, and do command and charge you, that you cause the said
tuns well and safely to be kept; and if any such things come into our
said city from henceforth, to be sent beyond sea by merchants aliens or
denizens, cause them also to be stopped and safely kept, until you shall
have had other mandate from us thereon; and you are not to allow any
such things to pass through your bailiwick, by reason whereof the profit
of our staple may be disturbed. We have also commanded our Chancellor,
that by writs under our Great Seal he shall cause it everywhere to be
forbidden that any such things shall pass from henceforth out of our
realm, in any way whatsoever. Given under our Privy Seal at Saltwood the
21st day of May, in the 19th year of our reign.

[Footnote 232: Printed in Riley, Memorials, 149.]


26. COMMERCIAL POLICY [_Political Songs and Poems_, _Rolls Series_, II,
282], _temp._ Edward IV.

  For there is no realm in no manner degree
  But they have need to our English commodity;
  And the cause thereof I will to you express,
  The which is sooth as the gospel of the mass.

  Meat, drink and cloth, to every man's sustenance
  They belong all three, without variance.
  For whoso lacketh any of these three things,
  Be they popes or emperors, or so royal kings,

  It may not stand with them in any prosperity;
  For whoso lacketh any of these, he suffereth adversity;
  Whiles this is sooth by your wits discern
  Of all the realms in the world this beareth the lantern.

  For of every of these three by God's ordinance,
  We have sufficiently unto our sustenance,
  And with the surplusage of one of these three things
  We might rule and govern all Christian kings.

  For the merchants come our wools for to buy
  Or else the cloth that is made thereof surely,
  Out of divers lands far beyond the sea,
  To have this merchandise into their country.

  Therefore let not our wool be sold for nought,
  Neither our cloth, for they must be sought;
  And in especial restrain straitly the wool,
  That the commons of this land may work at the full.

  And if any wool be sold of this land,
  Let it be of the worst both to free and bond,
  And none other in [no] manner wise,
  For many divers causes, as I can devise.

  If the wool be coarse, the cloth is mickle the worse,
  Yet into little they put out of purse
  As much for carding, spinning and weaving,
  Fulling, roving, dyeing and shearing;

  And yet when such cloth is all ywrought,
  To the maker it availeth little or nought,
  The price is simple, the cost is never the less,
  They that worketh such wool in wit be like an ass.

  For and ye knew the sorrow and heaviness
  Of the poor people living in distress,
  How they be oppressed in all manner of thing,
  In giving them too much weight into the spinning.

  For nine pounds, I ween, they shall take twelve,
  This is very truth, as I know myself;
  Their wages be bated, their weight is increased,
  Thus the spinners' and carders' avails be all ceased.


27. THE PERILS OF FOREIGN TRAVEL [_Court Roll, 178, 104, m. 3d._],[233]
1315.

The King sent his writ to the bailiffs of the abbot of Ramsey of the
fair of St. Ives in these words:--Edward by the grace of God King of
England, Lord of Ireland and Duke of Aquitaine, to the bailiffs of the
abbot of Ramsey of the fair of St. Ives, greeting. Whereas, on the
frequent complaint of our beloved cousin, Alice countess Marshal,
representing to us that lately by our licence she caused a ship about to
sail to the parts beyond seas to be laden with jewels of gold and silver
and other her goods and chattels to the value of 2000l., to be taken
thence to the said parts to await her coming there; and that John
Crabbe, master of a ship of The Mew, Miles of Utenham, Christian
Trilling, Crabekyn, nephew of John Crabbe, John Labay and John Winter,
together with certain other evildoers of the parts of Flanders, met the
aforesaid ship so laden on its way towards the said parts on the sea
between Boulogne and Whitsand, and in hostile manner took and carried
away the same ship so laden with cloths, jewels and other goods
aforesaid, and still detain the same jewels and goods of the aforesaid
countess, to her no small damage and loss: we many times requested
Robert, count of Flanders, by our special letters to hear the plaint of
the aforesaid countess on the premises, to be set forth to the same
count by her or her proctor or attorney in this behalf, and thereupon
to cause full justice to be done to her touching the said cloths, jewels
and other goods so carried off; whereupon the same count afterwards
wrote back to us, saying that he had caused certain of the aforesaid
evildoers to be punished, and was ready to hand over the others whom he
might secure to due punishment, as reason should permit. But, because
the aforesaid count delayed to show justice to the said countess
touching the restitution of the cloths, jewels and goods aforesaid
according to the form of our aforesaid requests, we afterwards thought
fit to require him divers times by our special letters to cause due
restitution or suitable satisfaction, as right should require, to be
made to the same countess for the cloths, jewels, goods and chattels
aforesaid. And though the count has received our letters aforesaid and
has been many times requested with great diligence on behalf of the same
countess by her attorneys or proctors to cause full justice to be done
to her in the premises, nevertheless he has neglected to do anything
therein at such our requests, although a great part of the same goods
had come into his hands, but has altogether failed to show her justice,
as the mayor and aldermen of our city of London have made known to us by
their letters patent sealed with their common seal.

We, refusing to refrain longer from causing the aforesaid countess to be
provided with a remedy agreeable to right touching the recovery of her
goods aforesaid, command you that you cause to be arrested without delay
all goods and wares of the men and merchants of the power and lordship
of the said count of Flanders, except the goods and wares of the
burgesses and merchants of Ypres, which shall happen to be found within
your bailiwick, to the value of 200l. in part satisfaction of the said
2000l., and to be kept under such arrest safely and without detraction
or diminution, until you shall have other orders from us thereon; and
that you make known to us plainly and openly under your seals what goods
and of what sort you cause to be arrested on that account, and whose
they are, and also the value thereof, returning to us this writ. For we
have commanded the mayor and sheriffs of London to cause to be arrested
without delay and to be kept under such arrest, until full satisfaction
be made to the aforesaid countess of her said goods so carried off, the
goods and wares of the men and merchants of the power of the said count
within their bailiwick to the value of 1000l.; and the bailiffs of the
town of Great Yarmouth to cause the arrest of goods to the value of
300l.; and the bailiffs of the town of Ipswich to cause the arrest of
goods to the value of 300l.; and the bailiffs of the town of Lynn to
cause the arrest of goods to the value of the 200l. residue. Witness
myself at Westminster on the 24th day of April in the eighth year of our
reign.

To which writ answer was made that no goods or chattels of the power and
lordship of Robert, count of Flanders, were found in the fair of St.
Ives after this writ was delivered to us. Therefore nothing at present
has been done therein.

[Footnote 233: Printed in Selden Society Publications, Vol. 23, p. 93.]


28. GRANT OF LETTERS OF MARQUE AND REPRISALS [_Patent Roll_, 26 _Henry_
VI, _p. 1, m. 27_.], 1447.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. John Hampshire and Henry May,
gentlemen, have shown to us that, whereas they, with twenty nine
persons, merchants and mariners, our lieges, in the month of December in
the twenty second year of our reign, in a ship called _Clement_ of
Hamble, came out of our duchy of Normandy sailing to our realm of
England, there came upon them thirty mariners of Brittany and took and
carried away the goods and merchandise of the aforesaid John and Henry
and other our lieges aforesaid to the value of 1336 marks, and their
bonds, indentures and bills making mention of debts to the sum of 700
marks, and beyond this likewise took and carried away the whole tackling
of the ship aforesaid and all their victuals found in the same ship, and
inhumanly stripped the same John and Henry to their shirts and certain
of our other said lieges as well of their shirts as of their other
garments, and abandoned and left the said John and Henry and our other
lieges abovesaid in the ship aforesaid, bereft and spoiled of all manner
of tackling necessary and requisite for the safe conduct of the same
ship, in the midst of the sea, in which ship the same John and Henry and
the rest of our lieges aforesaid, labouring in tempest and various
storms of the sea for three days and three nights together, and
despairing of their life in regard to all human aid, and putting all
hope and trust of their salvation wholly in God and the glorious Virgin
Mary, at length, after the days and nights aforesaid were past, they
arrived in port, at least a place of safety, by God's help; and although
at the instance of the aforesaid John and Henry we have oft fitly
requested our cousin the duke of Brittany by letters of our privy seal
that he would cause the same John and Henry to be provided with due and
just restitution to be had in this behalf, yet the same John and Henry,
using all diligence with due and speedy suit made to the same our cousin
in this behalf for three years and more, have not yet obtained and
cannot in any wise obtain any restitution thereof, to the gravest
expense and no small damage and burden to the same John and Henry;
wherefore they have humbly and instantly made supplication to us that we
would graciously deign to provide for relief to be made to them in this
behalf: We, considering that justice is and has been against all
conscience denied or at least delayed to the same John and Henry
diligently suing for their right, and willing to make provision that
justice or at least the execution of justice perish not in this behalf,
as far as in us lies, by the inspiration of piety, therefore, graciously
inclining to the supplication of the same John and Henry most benignly
made to us in this behalf, have granted to the same John and Henry
marque and reprisal, so that they, by themselves or their factors,
attorneys or servants having or to have sufficient power from them, and,
if the same John and Henry perchance die in the meantime, by their heirs
and executors, may take and arrest the bodies, ships, vessels, goods,
wares and merchandise of any subjects soever of the aforesaid duke,
wheresoever they may be found within our realms, lordships, lands,
powers and territories, as well on this side as beyond the sea, by land,
sea or water, within liberties and without, to the value of the said
2036 marks, and lawfully and with impunity detain the same until full
satisfaction shall have been made to them of that sum and of the whole
and entire tackling of the ship aforesaid and of the victuals aforesaid
or of the true value of the same, and of the damages, costs, outlays and
expenses which they have reasonably sustained and will sustain on our
behalf, and, for default of such satisfaction, that they may give, sell,
alienate them and dispose and order thereof as with their own goods, as
it shall seem to them best to be done, without hindrance, disturbance,
vexation or annoyance at the hands of us or our heirs or the officers or
ministers of us or our heirs whomsoever. And we give to all and
singular our admirals, captains, castellans and their lieutenants and
deputies, sheriffs, mayors, bailiffs, constables, searchers, wardens of
seaports and other maritime places, masters and mariners of ships and
other places whatsoever, and other our officers, ministers, lieges and
subjects whomsoever, as well on this side as beyond the sea, by land,
sea or water, wheresoever they be stablished, that they be intendant,
counselling, aiding and respondent in the premises to the same John and
Henry or their factors, attorneys, deputies or servants having or to
have sufficient power from the same John and Henry, and, if they die as
is aforesaid, then to their heirs or executors, as often as and when
they be duly requested by the same John and Henry or either of them or
the others aforesaid or any of them on our behalf. In witness, etc.
Witness the King at Westminster, 26 September. By writ of privy seal and
of the date, etc.[234]

[Footnote 234: For an earlier measure for the protection of shipping,
see below, Section VII., No. 2.]


29. GRANT OF LIBERTIES TO THE MERCHANTS OF DOUAI [_Charter Roll_, 45
_Henry_ III, _m. 4, No. 32_.], 1260.

The King to archbishops, etc. Know ye that we have granted and by this
our charter have confirmed for us and our heirs to our beloved burgesses
and merchants of Douai that for ever throughout the whole of our land
and power they have this liberty, to wit, that they or their goods,
found in any place soever in our power, shall not be arrested for any
debt for which they are not sureties or principal debtors, unless by
chance such debtors be of their commune and power, having goods
wherefrom they can make satisfaction for their debts in whole or in
part, and unless the burgesses of Douai, by whom that town is governed,
fail in justice to those who are of our land and power, and this can be
reasonably ascertained; and that the said burgesses and merchants for
ever be quit of murages on all their goods, possessions and merchandise
throughout our whole realm; and that the burgesses and merchants
aforesaid shall not lose their chattels and goods found in their hands
or deposited elsewhere by their servants, so far as they can
sufficiently prove them to be their own, for the trespass or forfeiture
of their servants; and also if the said burgesses and merchants or any
of them die within our land and power testate or intestate, we or our
heirs will not cause their goods to be confiscated so that their heirs
should not entirely have them, so far as the same be proved to be the
chattels of the said deceased, provided that sufficient knowledge or
proof be had touching the said heirs; and that they with their
merchandise may safely come into our land and power and stay there,
paying the due and right customs; so also that if at any time there be
war between the King of the French or others and us or our heirs, they
be forewarned to depart from our realm with their goods within forty
days. Wherefore we will and straitly command, for us and our heirs, that
the aforesaid burgesses and merchants and their heirs for ever have all
the liberties aforewritten throughout the whole of our land and power.
And we forbid, upon our forfeiture of 10l., that any man presume to
molest or annoy them in aught unjustly contrary to this liberty and our
grant. These witnesses:--the venerable father H. bishop of London,
Richard de Clare, earl of Gloucester and Hertford, Humphrey de Bohun,
earl of Hereford and Essex, Hugh le Bygod, Philip Basset, Hugh le
Despenser, our justiciar of England, James de Alditheleg, Roger de
Mortuo Mari, John Maunsell, treasurer of York, Robert Walerand, and
others. Given by our hand at Westminster, 24 November in the 45th year
of our reign.[235]

The burgesses and merchants of Douai give the King 100 marks for this
charter, which sum should be allowed in the 90l. in which the King is
bound to them, whereof there is the King's writ of _liberate_ at the
King's Exchequer; and the writ should be searched for and the 100 marks
noted therein.

[Footnote 235: Charters of this character were granted at this period to
almost every town of importance in England.]


30. ALIENS AT A FAIR [_Court Rolls, 178, 93, m. 3_], 1270. Court of
Wednesday [14 May, 1270].

Gottschalk of Almain, burgess of Lynn, makes plaint of the communities
of Ghent, Poperingen, Douai, Ypres and Lisle, as men of the countess of
Flanders, to wit, that whereas the same Gottschalk caused 14 sacks of
wool worth 140 marks to be brought from the realm of England to Bruges
in Flanders, to trade with it there, and lodged the wool at the house of
one Henry Thurold on Sunday next after Ash Wednesday in the forty-ninth
year of the reign of King Henry, the bailiffs of the said countess came
and arrested the said wool against the peace of the realm and still
detain it. Wherefore the same Gottschalk, for the unjust detention of
the wool aforesaid, made petition to the lord the King at Kenilworth and
elsewhere until now; whereupon the lord the King many times directed his
letters to the same countess, asking her to satisfy the same Gottschalk
of the aforesaid wool or the price thereof, and she has hitherto
neglected to do anything for the same Gottschalk, to his damage of 200
marks; and he produces suit. The aforesaid communities, being present,
do not deny the accustomed words of the court[236] or the detention of
the aforesaid wool or the damage of the aforesaid Gottschalk, but craved
licence to consult forthwith on the matter and withdrew. And afterwards
they came, making no defence against the charge of the said Gottschalk,
but the men of Ypres presented a charter of certain liberties granted to
them by the King's Court, stating that they should not be distrained for
any debt unless they were the sureties or principal debtors. For the men
of Lisle there came one Alard of Leeuw and showed a charter of the lord
the King for himself only, stating that he should not be distrained
unless he were a principal debtor or surety. Another man named Peter
Blarie of Lisle says that he has no charter. The men also of the
communities of Ghent and Douai[237] craved respite until Saturday to
show their charters, which they say that they have from the King's
Court, and that day was granted to them. The aforesaid Gottschalk,
however, craved judgment for the default of the aforesaid merchants; and
a day is given to the parties, to wit, to-morrow....

Be it remembered that Gottschalk of Almain, burgess of Lynn, gives to
the lord a seventh part of all which he may recover against the
communities of Ypres, Ghent, Douai, Poperingen and Lisle, to wit, of the
120 marks which he seeks for 14 sacks of wool detained to his damage of
200 marks.

[Footnote 236: _i.e._ "Tort and force."]

[Footnote 237: See No. 29 for the charter of Douai.]


31. CONFIRMATION OF LIBERTIES TO THE MERCHANTS OF ALMAIN [_Patent Roll_,
9 _Edward_ I, _m. 1_], 1280.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. Whereas the lord King Henry,
our father, of famous memory, lately granted by his letters
patent,[238] which we have inspected, at the instance of Richard, King
of the Romans, our uncle, of good memory, to the merchants of the realm
of Almain who have a house in the city of London commonly called the
Gildhall of the Teutons, that he would maintain and protect them, all
and singular, throughout the whole of his realm in all the same
liberties and free customs which they have used and enjoyed in the times
of him and his progenitors, and would not draw them nor in any wise
permit them to be drawn out of such liberties and free customs, as is
more fully contained in the letters aforesaid made thereon to the
aforesaid merchants: We, wishing that favour to be continued to the same
merchants, wish them to be maintained and protected in all the same
liberties and free customs which they have used and enjoyed in the times
of us and our progenitors, and we will not draw them or in any wise
permit them to be drawn out of such liberties and free customs. In
witness whereof, etc. Witness the King at Westminster, 18 November.

[Footnote 238: June 15, 1260. _Fædera I._, i. 398.]


32. ALIEN WEAVERS IN LONDON [_Guildhall, Letter-Book_ G, _f. 93_],[239]
1362.

Unto the most honourable Lords, and rightful, the Mayor and Aldermen of
the City of London, humbly pray the Weavers alien working in the same
City, that the points and Ordinances underwritten may be granted and
allowed to them, for the common profit of the land and of the City and
for the saving of their said trade.

In the first place, that three good folks of the weavers alien may be
ordained and sworn to keep and rule their trade, and the points
underwritten.

Also, that if any alien shall come to the said city to work in the said
trade, and to make his profit, he shall do nothing in the same before he
shall have presented himself to the Masters alien of the said trade, and
by the said Masters have been examined if he knows his trade or not; and
thereupon, let orders be given by the said Masters what he shall take by
the day for his work.

Also that no one of the said trade of weavers alien shall be so daring
as to work at the trade by night.

Also, that no one in the said trade shall work at the trade on
Saturdays; or on the Eve of Double Feasts after None rung in the parish
where he resides.

Also, if any workman has served his alien master by the day or by the
week, and the said master will not pay the workman for his work,
according as they shall have agreed, the good folks who shall be
ordained and sworn to keep and rule their said trade, shall have power
to forbid the said master to be so daring as to work at the said trade,
until he shall have paid his workman what he is bound to pay him. And if
he shall do the contrary, and be convicted thereof, let him pay to the
Chamber the penalty that is underwritten.

Also, whereas heretofore, if any dispute occurred between a master alien
in the said trade and his workman, such workman was wont to go to all
the workmen within the City in the said trade, and by covin and
conspiracy between them made, they would give orders that no one of them
should work or submit to serve until the said master and his workman
should have agreed; by reason whereof the masters of the said trade were
in great trouble, and the people left unserved; it is ordered that, from
henceforth if any dispute shall occur between any master alien and his
workman in the said trade, the same dispute shall be rectified by the
Wardens of the trade. And if any workman who shall have offended, or
have misbehaved towards his master alien will not submit to be adjudged
before the said Wardens, let such workman be arrested by a Serjeant of
the Chamber at the suit of the said Wardens, and brought before the
Mayor and Aldermen; and before them let him be punished, at their
discretion.

Also, if any alien of the said trade shall be found doing mischief in
the way of larceny, to the value of 12 pence; the first time, let him
make amends to him against whom he shall have so offended, at the
discretion of the Masters alien of the said trade. And if he shall be
found guilty thereof a second time, let him be brought before the Mayor
and Aldermen, and before them be punished according to his deserts.

Also if any alien of the said trade shall be found guilty in any point
aforesaid, let him be amerced, the first time, in 40 pence, to the use
of the Chamber; half a mark, the second time; 20 shillings the third
time; and the fourth time, let him forswear the trade in the said city,
and every time, let him also pay 12 pence to the Wardens for their
trouble.

John le Grutteret and Peter Vanthebrok, Flemings, and John Elias,
Brabanter, were chosen on the 23rd day of February in the 36th year and
sworn to keep and oversee the Articles aforesaid, and the alien men of
the same trade.

[Footnote 239: Printed in Riley, Memorials, p. 306]


33. THE HOSTING OF ALIENS [_Exch. K.R. Accounts, 128, 31, m. 15_], 1442.

This is the view of William Chervyle, surveyor and host ordained and
deputed by Robert Clopton, late mayor of the city of London, upon John
Mantel, captain of a carrack coming to Sandwich, and James Ryche,
scrivan[240] of the said carrack, and James Douhonour, merchants, coming
from Sandwich with the said carrack, to survey as well their merchandise
found in their keeping and also coming afterwards, as the employment of
the same, to wit, the said John Mantell and James Ryche between the 18th
day of January, and James Dohonour between the 25th day of January in
the 20th year of the reign of our sovereign lord King Henry the Sixth,
until the feast of Michaelmas next following.

   The merchandise coming and found in the said carrack of the said John
   Mantell and James Ryche and James Dohonour--

   First, 14 butts of sweet wine.

   Further, 30 barrels of the same sweet wine.

   Further, 144 butts of sweet wine.

   Further, 10 butts of currant raisins.

The merchandise sold by the said John Mantell, James Ryche and James
Douhonour:--

  First, sold in the month of February to the
    prior of Canterbury, I butt for                4l.  6s. 8d.
  Further, to John Brokley, 2 butts for            8l.  6s. 8d.
  Further, to Andrew Tye, 2 butts for              8l.
  Further, to John Style, 4 butts for             14l.
  Further, to Davy Selly, 3 butts for             12l.
  Further, to Richard Tremayne, 2 butts for        8l.
  Further, to John Chyppenham, 30 barrels for     16l.
  Further, sold in the month of March to Simon
    Eyre, 101 butts for                          305l.
  Further, to John Style, 20 butts for            75l.
  Further, to John Style, 10 butts for            40l.
  Further, to Davy Selly, 4 butts for             16l.
  Further, to Thomas Greye, 3 butts for           11l. 10s.
  Further, to John atte Wode, 2 butts for          7l.
  Further, to John Bale, 4 butts for              16l.
  Further, to Harry Purchase, 3 butts of currant
  raisins for                                     29l.
  Further, to John Gybbe, 3 butts for             29l.
  Further, to Nicholas Wyfold, 3 butts for        31l.
  Further, to John Pecok, 1 butt [for]             9l. 10s.
            Sum of the said sales                639l. 13s. 4d.

The purchases made by the said John Mantell and James Ryche and James
Dohonour for the employment of the merchandise aforesaid:--

  First, bought of Simon Eyre, 200 cloths "westrons" for       305l.
  Further, of John Brokley, 40 yards of murrey in grain         18l.
  Further, of Henry Kempe, 5 cloths "Northamptons"              40l.
  Further, of Philip Malpas, 60 cloths "westrons"               90l.
  Further, of John Bale, 60 pieces of Suffolk "streyts" for     38l.
  Further, of William Dyllowe, 10 cloths "Northamptons"         60l.
  Further, of John Andreu, 8 cloths "Ludlowes"                  16l.
  Further, of Thomas Grey, 1101 quarters of pewter for          15l.
  Further, of William ----, 40 cloths "westrons"                60l.
  Further, of John at Wode, 20 cloths "westrons" for            32l.
  Further, of John Style, 80 Suffolk "streyts" for              46l.
            Sum of the purchases aforesaid                     745l.[241]

[Footnote 240: The scrivan (_i.e._, writer) had charge of the
merchandise on board.]

[Footnote 241: This survey was made pursuant to Stat. 18 Henry VI. The
result of the transaction would have delighted the "mercantile"
theorist.]

34. AN OFFENCE AGAINST STAT. 18 HENRY VI. FOR THE HOSTING OF ALIENS
[_Exch. K.R. Accounts, 128, 31, m. 28_], 1440.

I, Stephen Stychemerssh, citizen of the city of London, certify your
reverences, the venerable and discreet barons of the Exchequer of the
most excellent prince, our lord the King, and all whose interest it is,
that on the fifth day of the month of April in the 18th year of the
reign of King Henry the Sixth, there were assigned to me, the aforesaid
Stephen, by Robert Large, then mayor of the city aforesaid, Surlio
Spyngell, Baptista Spyngell, Teras Spyngell, John Bryan, Raphael and
Jeronimus, their clerks, merchant strangers, to be under me, the
aforesaid Stephen, as their host, to survey all and singular merchandise
brought and hereafter to be brought by the aforesaid Surlio, Baptista,
Teras, John, Raphael and Jeronimus into the city aforesaid and the
suburbs of the same; and upon the assignment aforesaid so made by the
aforesaid late mayor, I, the aforesaid Stephen Stychemerssh, went to the
aforesaid Surlio, Baptista, Teras, John, Raphael and Jeronimus on the
eighth day of April in the said 18th year in the parish of St. Peter in
the ward of Bread Street, requiring them to be under my survey and
governance according to the form of a Statute [published in the
Parliament] holden at Westminster in the said 18th year; which Surlio
Spyngell, Baptista Spyngell, Teras Spyngell, John Bryan, Raphael and
Jeronimus, though often required by me and after the corporal pain of
imprisonment had been inflicted by the aforesaid late mayor and other
warnings put upon them, have altogether neglected and contemned and
still neglect and contemn to obey or observe the aforesaid statute or
ordinance, alleging for themselves certain letters patent[242] of the
lord the king under his great seal to them and other merchants of Genoa
of a licence granted to them by the said lord the King not to be under
any such host, so that touching their merchandise brought from the said
fifth day of the month of April or touching the sales of the same
merchandise nothing at present has been done by me, nor could I have any
knowledge thereof, contrary to the form of the statute or ordinance
aforesaid.[243]

[Footnote 242: Patent Roll, 18 Henry VI., p. 3, m. 22 (1440).]

[Footnote 243: This document illustrates the difficulty of the
legislature in its attempts at national regulation. A mediæval statute
was not a dead letter, but competed perforce with local liberty and
royal prerogative. The crown at once collected fines for breaches of a
statute and fees for exemption from its operation.]


35. IMPRISONMENT OF AN ALIEN CRAFTSMAN [_Early Chancery Proceedings, 11,
455_], c. 1440.

To the right reverend father in God, the bishop of Bath and Wells,
Chancellor of England.

Meekly beseecheth your good and gracious lordship your continual
orator, Henry Wakyngknyght, goldsmith, tenderly to consider that whereas
he, by the Mayor's commandment of London, caused by the subtle
suggestion of the Wardens of the Craft of Goldsmiths of London, now late
is imprisoned within the Counter in Bread Street, no cause laid against
him but only that he is a stranger born, occupying his craft in London,
so utterly intending to keep him still in prison for ever to his utter
destruction and undoing--howbeit your said orator occupieth not his said
craft openly in shops but privily, in no derogation of any franchise or
custom of the goldsmiths of London--without your gracious lordship to
him be shewed in this behalf. Wherefore please it your said gracious
lordship, the premises considered, and also the holy time of Easter now
coming, to grant unto your said orator a _corpus cum causa_ directed to
the Mayor and Sheriffs of London, commanding them by the same to bring
up the body of the said Henry with the cause of his arrest before your
lordship into the King's Chancery at a certain day by your lordship to
be limited, there to answer in the premises as reason and conscience
shall require, for the love of God and in way of charity.

[_Endorsed._] Before the lord the King in his Chancery on Monday next,
to wit, 23 March.


36. PETITION AGAINST USURY [_Parliament Roll_, 50 _Edward_ III, _No.
158_], 1376.

Further, the commons of the land pray that whereas the horrible vice of
usury is so spread abroad and used throughout the land that the virtue
of charity, without which none can be saved, is wellnigh wholly
perished, whereby, as is known too well, a great number of good men have
been undone and brought to great poverty: Please it, to the honour of
God, to establish in this present Parliament that the ordinance[244]
made in the city of London for a remedy of the same, well considered and
corrected by your wise council and likewise by the bishop of the same
city, be speedily put into execution, without doing favour to any,
against every person, of whatsoever condition he be, who shall be
hereafter attainted as principal or receiver or broker of such false
bargains. And that all the Mayors and Bailiffs of cities and boroughs
throughout the realm have the same power to punish all those who shall
be attainted of this falsity within their bailiwicks according to the
form of the articles comprehended in the same ordinance. And that the
same ordinance be kept throughout all the realm, within franchises and
without.

Answer.--Let the law of old used run herein

[Footnote 244: Ordinance dated 1363. _See_ Cunningham, _Growth of
English Industry and Commerce, Mediæval Times_, p. 361 _n._]


37. ACTION UPON USURY [_Early Chancery Proceedings_, 64, 291],[245] _c._
1480.

To the right reverend father in God, the Bishop of Lincoln and
Chancellor of England.

Right humbly beseecheth unto your lordship your Orator William Elryngton
of Durham, mercer, that whereas he now 4 years past and more had for a
stock of one Richard Elryngton the sum of 30l., wherefore your said
Orator was by his obligation bounden unto the said Richard in 40l. and
odd silver; which sum of 30l. your said Orator should have to be
employed in merchandise, during the space of 7 years, yielding yearly
unto the said Richard, for the loan thereof 4l. of lawful money of
England, and at the 7 years' end to yield whole unto the said Richard
the said sum of 30l.; whereupon your said Suppliant occupied the said
sum by the space of 2 years, and paid yearly unto the said Richard 4l.;
and after that your said Orator, remembering in his conscience that that
bargain was not godly nor profitable, intended and proffered the said
Richard his said sum of 30l. again, which to do he refused, but would
that your said Orator should perform his bargain. Nevertheless, the said
Richard was afterward caused, and in manner compelled, by spiritual men
to take again the said 30l., whereupon before sufficient record the said
Richard faithfully promised that the said obligation of 40l. and
covenants should be cancelled and delivered unto your said Orator, as
reason is. Now it is so that the said Richard oweth and is indebted by
his obligation in a great sum of money to one John Saumpill, which is
now Mayor of Newcastle, wherefore now late the said Richard, by the mean
of the said mayor, caused an action of debt upon the said obligation of
40l. to be affirmed before the mayor and sheriff of the said Town of
Newcastle, and there by the space almost of 12 months hath sued your
said Orator, to his great cost, and this against all truth and
conscience, by the mighty favour of the said mayor, by cause he would
the rather attain unto his duty, purposeth now by subtle means, to cast
and condemn wrongfully your said Orator in the said sum of 40l., to his
great hurt and undoing, without your special lordship be unto him shewed
in this behalf, wherefore please it your said lordship to consider the
premise, thereupon to grant a _certiorari_, direct unto the Mayor and
Sheriff of the said Town, to bring up before you the cause, that it may
be there examined and ruled as conscience requireth, for the love of God
and in way of charity.

[Footnote 245: Printed in Abram's _Social England_, 215.]



SECTION VII

TAXATION CUSTOMS AND CURRENCY [For feudal taxation see Section II.]

   1. Form of the taxation of a fifteenth and tenth, 1336--2.
   Disposition of a subsidy of tonnage and poundage, 1382--3. The king's
   prise of wines, 1320--4. The custom on wool, 1275--5. The custom on
   wine, 1302--6. The custom on general imports, 1303--7. Administration
   of the search, 1303--8. Provision for the currency and the search,
   1335--9. Opinions on the state of English money, 1381-2.


The following documents illustrate in the first place the sources of
royal revenue other than (_a_) the direct rents accruing to the King as
a great landlord, (_b_) the payments due to him as feudal overlord, and
(_c_) the profits of justice and administration, Nos. 1 and 2
representing the ordinary forms of Parliamentary grants, and Nos. 3 to 6
the prerogative right of the Crown to payments for the privilege of
commercial intercourse by way of prise or custom; and in the second
place the continuous efforts of mediæval governments to secure a good
and easy currency (Nos. 7 to 9), a problem which they failed to solve
either by the direct method of forbidding the export and controlling the
import of money, or by the indirect method of insisting on the exchange
of goods for goods by alien merchants frequenting the realm.


AUTHORITIES

   The principal modern writers dealing with the subject of this section
   are:--Dowell, _History of Taxation and Taxes in England_; Stubbs,
   _Constitutional History_; Hall, _Customs Revenue_; Shaw, _History of
   Currency_; Crump & Hughes, _English Currency_ (Economic Journal, V.).

   Contemporary authorities:--Wolowski, _Traité de Nicholas Oresme_.


1. FORM OF THE TAXATION OF A FIFTEENTH AND TENTH [_Fine Roll_, 10
_Edward_ III, _m._ 13], 1336.

This is the form which the assessors and taxers of the fifteenth,
granted to our lord the King in his Parliament holden at Westminster on
the Monday next after Sunday in mid-Lent last past, in the tenth year of
his reign, by the earls, barons, freemen and the commonalties of all the
counties of the realm, and also of the tenth there granted to our said
lord the King in all the cities, boroughs and the ancient demesnes of
the King, of the same realm, from all their goods which they had on the
day of the said grant, ought to observe, and thereby to assess, tax,
collect and levy the same fifteenth and tenth in the counties of
Northumberland, Cumberland and Westmoreland, to wit, that the chief
taxers without delay cause to come before them from each city, borough
and other town of the counties, within franchise and without, the more
lawful and wealthier men of the same places in such number that
therefrom the chief taxers may sufficiently choose four or six of each
town, or more if need be, at their discretion, by whom the said taxation
and that which pertains thereto to be done may best be done and
accomplished; and when they shall have chosen such, then they shall
cause them to swear on the Holy Gospels, to wit, those of each town by
themselves, that those so sworn will lawfully and fully enquire what
goods each man of the same towns had on the said day within house and
without, wheresoever they be, without any favour, upon heavy forfeiture,
and will lawfully tax all those goods, wheresoever they have come from
then till now by sale or otherwise, according to the true value, save
the things below excepted in this form, and will cause them to be listed
and put on a roll indented quite fully as speedily as they can, and to
be delivered to the chief taxers one part under their seals, and retain
by themselves the other part under the seals of the chief taxers, and
when the chief taxers shall have in such wise received the indentures of
those who shall be sworn to tax in cities boroughs and other towns, the
same chief taxers shall lawfully and minutely examine such indentures,
and if they discover that there is any defect they shall forthwith amend
it, so that nothing be concealed, neither for gift nor for reward of a
person taxed less than reason requires; and the King wills that the
chief taxers go from hundred to hundred and from town to town, where
need shall be, to survey and enquire that the subtaxers in the same
towns have fully taxed and valued the goods of every man, and if they
find anything concealed, amend it forthwith and cause the Treasurer and
Barons of the Exchequer to know the names of those who shall have so
trespassed, and the manner of their misdeed; and the taxation of the
goods of the subtaxers of the towns shall be made by the chief taxers
and by other good men whom they choose so to do, so that their goods be
well and lawfully taxed in the same manner as those of others. The
taxation of the goods of the chief taxers and of their clerks shall be
reserved to the Treasurer and Barons of the Exchequer. And the chief
taxers, as soon as they shall have received the presentment of the
subtaxers shall cause the fifteenth and tenth to be levied to the use of
the King without delay and without doing favour to any man, in the form
which is enjoined upon them by the commission. And they shall cause to
be made two rolls of the said taxation agreeing in all points, and
retain the one by them to levy the taxation and have the other at the
Exchequer at the feast of St. Peter's Chains next coming, on which day
they shall make their first payment. And be it known that in this
taxation of the goods of the commonalty of all the counties there shall
be excepted armour, mounts, jewels and robes for knights and gentlemen
and their wives, and their vessels of gold and silver and brass, and in
cities and boroughs shall be excepted a robe for the man and another for
his wife and a bed for both, a ring and a buckle of gold or silver, and
a girdle of silk, which they use every day, and also a bowl of silver or
of mazer from which they drink. And the goods of lepers, where they are
governed by a superior who is a leper, shall not be taxed or taken, and
if the lepers be governed by a sound master, their goods shall be taxed
like those of others. And be it remembered that from people of counties
out of cities, boroughs and the king's demesnes whose goods in all
exceed not the value of 10s., nothing shall be demanded or levied; and
from the goods of people of cities, boroughs and the king's demesnes,
which exceed not the value of 6s. in all, nothing shall be demanded or
levied.


2. THE DISPOSITION OF A SUBSIDY OF TONNAGE AND POUNDAGE [_K.R. Customs
Accounts_, 159, 4], 1382.

This indenture made between Thomas Beaupyne of Bristol and John Polymond
of Hampton appointed in Parliament to make order for the safe keeping of
the sea by means of the subsidy of 6d. in the pound and 2s. on the tun
[of wine] on the coasts of the west, granted in the said Parliament for
the same cause, of the one part, and William Bast of the other part,
witnesseth that the said William has received from the said Thomas and
John 180l. of the said subsidy to find a ship and a barge of 180 men to
serve our lord the King on the sea for a quarter of a year, the said
quarter beginning on Michaelmas Day next or within fifteen days after,
as he shall deem best to be done, by the testimony of the mayor of
Dartmouth or the admiral's lieutenant in those parts, taking from the
commencement of the said voyage 20s. for each man for the said quarter,
together with all the profit that he may seize from enemies in the mean
time without impeachment, according to the form ordained and agreed upon
in the said Parliament, to be on the sea for the preservation of English
shipping according to their power, without making for the land of
England unless it be through tempest of the sea or other reasonable
cause during the said quarter; for the good and lawful performance of
which voyage in the manner abovesaid the said William hereby binds
himself, his heirs and executors, and all his goods and chattels,
moveable and immoveable, to our said lord the King to perform the said
voyage as is abovesaid; and the survey of the number of the said men,
according to the form of this indenture, shall be made and witnessed by
the admiral in those parts or his lieutenant. In witness whereof to
these indentures the parties aforesaid have interchangeably put their
seals. Written at Exeter, 24 August in the sixth year of the reign of
King Richard the Second after the Conquest.


3. THE KING'S PRISE OF WINES [_Fine Roll_, 13 _Edward_ II, _m._ 3], 1320

The King to his beloved clerk, Roger de Northburgh, keeper of his
wardrobe, greeting. Whereas we lately confirmed certain ordinances made
of late by the prelates and chiefs of our realm, and commanded the same
to be observed in all and singular their articles, and in those
ordinances it is contained that all gifts and grants made by us to our
loss and to the diminution of our crown after 16 March in the third year
of our reign, on which day we made our commission to the aforesaid
prelates and chiefs touching the making of the said ordinances, ... be
wholly revoked, and afterwards we granted to Stephen de Abindon, our
butler, our right prise of wines one tun of wine before the mast and one
tun of wine behind the mast, at our will, he paying to the merchants
from whom he should receive those wines in our name 20s. for each piece
and 20s. to us for each piece in our wardrobe; which grant was made
after the said 16 March, and is known to redound to our damage: We,
wishing the said ordinances to be duly put into execution in this
behalf, command you that you fully charge Stephen, in his account of the
things pertaining to his office of butler to be rendered before you,
with the wines of our right prise aforesaid for the whole time in which
the same Stephen was our butler, notwithstanding our grant aforesaid and
our commands afterwards following hereon. Witness the King at Odiham, 23
May[246].

By the council.

[Footnote 246: The prise of wines was the royal right, limited at least
from the time of Edward I., of purchasing 2 tuns of wine from every ship
at the rate of 20s. a tun, whatever the market price might be; 60s. a
tun was a normal price in the 14th century (_see K.R. Accounts_, 77.
21). The value of this grant to Stephen is obvious.]


4. THE CUSTOM ON WOOL [_Fine Roll_, 3 _Edward I, m._ 24], 1275.

For the new custom which is granted by all the great men of the realm
and at the prayer of the communities of the merchants of all England, it
is provided that in every county in the largest town where there is a
port two of the more lawful and able men be elected, who shall have one
piece of a seal in keeping, and one man who shall be assigned by that
King shall have another piece; and they shall be sworn that they will
lawfully receive and answer for the King's money, that is to say, on
each sack of wool 1/2 mark, and on each 300 fells which make a sack 1/2
mark, and on each last[247] of hides 1 mark, that shall go out of the
realm, as well in Ireland and Wales as in England, within the franchise
and without. Furthermore in every port whence ships can sail there
shall be two good men sworn that they will not suffer wools, fells or
hides to leave without letters patent sealed with the seal which shall
be at the chief port in the same county; and if there is any man who
goes otherwise therewith out of the realm, he shall lose all the
chattels which he has and his body shall be at the King's will. And
forasmuch as this business cannot be performed immediately, it is
provided that the King send his letters to every sheriff throughout all
the realm, and cause it to be proclaimed and forbidden through all the
counties that any man, upon forfeiture of his body and of all his
chattels, cause wools, fells or hides to be taken out of the land before
the feast of Trinity this year, and thereafter by letters patent sealed
with the seals as is aforesaid, and not otherwise, upon the aforesaid
forfeitures. And the King has granted of his grace that all lordships,
through the ports whereof wools or hides shall pass, shall have the
forfeitures when they are incurred, each in its port, saving to the King
1/2 mark on each sack of wool and fells, and 1 mark on each last of
hides.[248]

[Footnote 247: 12 dozen.]

[Footnote 248: This and the two following documents fix the normal rates
of customs on exported and imported goods for the mediæval period. The
custom on wools, woolfells and hides, came to be known as the great or
ancient custom.]


5. THE CUSTOM ON WINE [_Charter Roll_, 30 _Edward I, m._ 2], 1302

The King to Archbishops, etc., greeting. Touching the prosperous estate
of the merchants of our duchy aforesaid [Aquitaine] a special care
weighs upon us, in what wise under our lordship the immunity of
tranquillity and full security may be secured to the same merchants for
times to come; so, therefore, that their desires may be the more
abundantly increased to the service of us and our realm, we, favourably
inclining to their petitions, for the fuller assurance of their estate,
have deemed fit to ordain and to grant to the same merchants for us and
our heirs for ever in the form that follows:

First, that all merchant vintners of the duchy aforesaid, safely and
securely, under our defence and protection, may come into our said realm
of England and everywhere within our power with wines and other
merchandise whatsoever and that within the same our realm and power, in
cities, boroughs and market-towns, they may traffic in gross[249] as
well with denizens or inhabitants of the same realm as with aliens,
strangers or friends (_privatis_), and that they may take or carry
whither they will, as well within our realm and power aforesaid as also
without, their merchandise which they shall happen to bring into the
same our realm and power or to buy or otherwise acquire within the same
our realm and power, and to do their will therewith, paying the customs
which they shall owe, except only wines, which it shall not be lawful
for them in any wise to take out of the same our realm and power without
our will.

Further, that the said merchant vintners of the said duchy may lodge at
their will in the cities and towns aforesaid, and stay with their goods
at the pleasure of those to whom the inns or houses belong.

Further, that every contract entered upon by the same vintners with any
persons, whencesoever they be, touching all manner of merchandise, be
valid and stable, so that neither of the merchants may disown that
contract or withdraw from the same, after God's penny[250] shall have
been given and received between the contractors. And if by chance a
dispute arise on such a contract, proof shall be made thereof according
to the uses and customs of the fairs and towns where the said contract
shall happen to be made and entered upon.

Further, we remit and quit to the said merchants of the said duchy that
ancient prise of two tuns of wine which we used to take from every ship
laden with wines touching within our realm or power, one, to wit, before
the mast, and the other behind, promising further and granting to the
same merchants for us and our heirs for ever that we will in no wise
hereafter against the will of the same merchants make or suffer to be
made the aforesaid prise or any other of wines or other their wares by
us or another or others for any necessity or chance, without payment to
be made forthwith according to the price at which the said merchants
will sell wines and other wares to others, or other satisfaction
wherewith they shall count themselves content, so that a valuation or
estimation be not put upon their wines or other wares by us or our
ministers.

Further, that on each tun of wine gauged, as the seller of the wine
shall be bound to supply that which it lacks from the gauge, so he
shall be satisfied by the buyer of that which is over the gauge
according to the price at which the tun of wine shall be sold.

Further, that as soon as ships with new wines touch within our realm and
power, old wines, wheresoever they be found in towns or other places to
which the said ships shall come, shall be viewed and proved, if they be
whole and also uncorrupt, and of those who shall view the said wines,
one moiety shall be of merchant vintners of the duchy aforesaid, and the
other of good men of the town where this shall be done, and they shall
be sworn to do the premises faithfully and without fraud, and they shall
do the accustomed justice with corrupt wines.

Further, whereas it was of old time accustomed and used that the buyer
and seller should pay 1d. for each tun for gauge, each of them, to wit,
1/2d., let it be so done hereafter and observed for a custom.

Further, we will that all bailiffs and ministers of fairs, cities,
boroughs and market-towns, do speedy justice to the vintners aforesaid
who complain before them of wrongs, molestations done to them, debts and
any other pleas, from day to day without delay according to the Law
Merchant, and if by chance default be found in any of the bailiffs or
ministers aforesaid, whereby the same vintners or any of them shall
sustain the inconveniences of delay, although the vintner recover his
damages against the party in principal, nevertheless the bailiff or
other minister shall be punished by us as his guilt demands, and that
punishment we grant by favour to the merchant vintners aforesaid to
hasten justice for them.

Further, that in all sorts of pleas, saving the case of a crime for
which the penalty of death is inflicted, where a merchant vintner of the
duchy aforesaid shall be impleaded or shall implead another, of
whatsoever condition he who is impleaded shall be, stranger or native,
in fairs, cities, or boroughs where there shall be a sufficient number
of merchant vintners of the duchy aforesaid, and inquest should be made,
one moiety of the inquest shall be of such merchant vintners of the
duchy aforesaid, and the other moiety of other good and lawful men of
that place where that plea shall happen to be, and if it shall happen
that a sufficient number of merchant vintners of the duchy aforesaid be
not found, there shall be put on the inquest those who shall be found
there sufficient of themselves, and the residue shall be of other good
and sufficient men of the places in which that plea shall be.

Further, that no other exaction or charge of prest shall be in any wise
put upon the wines of the said merchants.

Further, we have deemed fit to ordain, and we will that ordinance for us
and our heirs for ever to be straitly observed, that for any liberty
soever which we or our heirs shall grant hereafter, the aforesaid
merchant vintners shall not lose the above written liberties or any of
them; willing that those liberties extend only to the said merchant
vintners of our duchy aforesaid. But for the abovesaid liberties and
free customs the merchant vintners aforesaid have granted to us that on
each tun of wine which they shall bring or cause to be brought within
our realm or power, and whereon they shall be bound to pay freight to
mariners, they shall pay by name of custom to us and our heirs, beyond
the ancient customs due and paid in money whether to us or to others,
2s. within forty days after the same wines be put ashore out of the
ships. And we will that the aforesaid merchant vintners, in respect of
wines whereon they shall have paid to us the aforesaid custom of 2s. in
one place of our realm or elsewhere within our power, shall be entirely
free and quit of payment of the aforesaid custom of 2s. in all other
places of our said realm and power; provided that for other merchandise
whatsoever which they shall happen to employ within our realm and power
they be held to pay to us the same customs which the rest of the
merchants shall pay to us for such merchandise. These witnesses:--the
venerable father, W. bishop of Coventry and Lichfield, John de Warenna,
earl of Surrey, Roger le Bygod, earl of Norfolk and marshal of England,
John de Britannia, Hugh le Despenser, William de Brewosa, Walter de
Bello Campo, steward of our household, Roger le Brabazon, John de Merk
and others. Given by the King's hand at Westminster, 13 August.

[Footnote 249: _i.e._ Wholesale.]

[Footnote 250: Earnest money.]


6. THE CUSTOM ON GENERAL IMPORTS [_Charter Roll_, 2 _Edward III, m._ 11,
_No._ 37], 1303.[251]

Edward by the grace of God King of England, Lord of Ireland and Duke of
Aquitaine, to archbishops, bishops, abbots, priors, earls, barons,
justices, sheriffs, reeves, ministers, and all his bailiffs and
faithful, greeting. Touching the good estate of all merchants of the
underwritten realms, lands and provinces, to wit, Almain, France, Spain,
Portugal, Navarre, Lombardy, Tuscany, Provence, Catalonia, our duchy of
Aquitaine, Toulouse, Quercy, Flanders, Brabant, and all other foreign
lands and places, by whatsoever name they be known, coming to our realm
of England and staying there, an especial anxiety weighs upon us, in
what wise under our lordship a means of tranquillity and full security
may be devised for the same merchants for times to come: in order
therefore that their desires may be rendered apter to the service of us
and our realm, we, favourably inclining to their petitions, for the
fuller assurance of their estate, have deemed fit to ordain and to grant
to the said merchants for us and our heirs for ever as follows: First,
to wit, that all merchants of the said realms and lands, safely and
securely, under our defence and protection, may come into our said realm
of England and everywhere else within our power with their merchandise
whatsoever free and quit of murage, pontage and pavage,[252] and that
within the same our realm and power in cities, boroughs and market-towns
they may traffic in gross only[253] as well with denizens or inhabitants
of the same our realm and power aforesaid as with aliens, strangers or
friends (_privatis_), so nevertheless that the wares which are commonly
called mercery and spices may be sold at retail as before was wont to be
done, and that all the aforesaid merchants may cause their merchandise,
which they chance to bring to our aforesaid realm and power or to buy or
otherwise acquire within the same our realm and power, to be taken or
carried whither they will as well within our realm and power aforesaid
as without, except to lands of manifest and notorious enemies of our
realm, paying the customs which they shall owe, wines only excepted,
which it shall not be lawful for them in any wise to take away from the
same our realm or power after they shall have been brought within the
same our realm or power, without our will and special license.

Further, that the aforesaid merchants may lodge at their will in the
cities, boroughs and town aforesaid, and stay with their goods at the
pleasure of those to whom the inns or houses belong.

Further, that every contract entered upon by those merchants with any
persons soever, whencesoever they be, touching any sort of merchandise,
shall be valid and stable, so that neither of the merchants can withdraw
or retire from that contract after God's penny shall have been given and
received between the principal contracting persons; and if by chance a
dispute arise on such a contract, proof or inquisition shall be made
thereof according to the uses and customs of the fairs and towns where
the said contract shall happen to be made and entered upon.

Further, we promise to the aforesaid merchants for us and our heirs for
ever, granting that we will in no wise make or suffer to be made
henceforth any prise or arrest or delay on account of prise of their
wares, merchandise or other goods by us or another or others for any
necessity or case against the will of the same merchants, save upon
immediate payment of the price for which the merchants can sell such
wares to others, or upon satisfaction otherwise made to them, so that
they hold themselves contented; and that no valuation or estimation be
set by us or our ministers on their wares, merchandise or goods.

Further, we will that all bailiffs and ministers of fairs, cities,
boroughs and market-towns do speedy justice to the merchants aforesaid
who complain before them from day to day without delay according to the
Law Merchant touching all and singular plaints which can be determined
by the same law; and if by chance default be found in any of the
bailiffs or ministers aforesaid whereby the same merchants or any of
them shall sustain the inconveniences of delay, although the merchant
recover his damages in principal against the party, nevertheless the
bailiff or other minister shall be punished in respect of us as the
guilt demands, and that punishment we have granted by way of favour to
the merchants aforesaid to hasten justice for them.

Further, that in all sorts of pleas, saving the ease of crime for which
the penalty of death shall be inflicted, where a merchant shall be
impleaded or shall implead another, of whatsoever condition he who is
impleaded shall be, stranger or native, in fairs, cities, or boroughs,
where there shall be a sufficient number of merchants of the aforesaid
lands, and inquest should be made, one moiety of the inquest shall be of
the same merchants, and the other moiety of other good and lawful men of
that place where that plea shall happen to be, and if a sufficient
number of merchants of the said lands be not found, there shall be put
on the inquest those who shall be found there fit, and the residue shall
be of other men good and fit of the places in which that plea shall be.

Further, we will, ordain and decree that in each markettown and fair of
our realm aforesaid and elsewhere within our power our weight be set in
a certain place, and before weighing the scales shall be seen to be
empty in the presence of buyer and seller, and that the arms be level,
and that then the weigher weigh level, and when he have put the scales
on a level, forthwith move his hands away, so that it remain level; and
that throughout our whole realm and power there be one weight and one
measure, and that they be marked with the mark of our standard, and that
each man may have scales of a quarter and less, where it shall not be
against the lord of the place or a liberty granted by us or our
ancestors, or against the custom of towns or fairs hitherto observed.

Further, we will and grant that a certain loyal and discreet man
resident in London be assigned as justice for the said merchants, before
whom they may specially plead and speedily recover their debts, if the
sheriffs and mayors do not full and speedy justice for them from day to
day, and that a commission be made thereon granted out of the present
charter to the merchants aforesaid, to wit, of the things which shall be
tried between merchants and merchants according to the Law Merchant.

Further, we ordain and decree, and for us and our heirs for ever we will
that that ordinance and decree be straitly observed, that for each
liberty which we or our heirs shall hereafter grant, the aforesaid
merchants shall not lose the above written liberties or any of them. But
for the obtaining of the aforesaid liberties and free customs and the
remission of our prises to them, the said merchants, all and singular,
for them and all others of their parts, have granted to us with one
heart and mind that on each tun of wine which they shall bring or cause
to be brought within our realm or power, whereon they shall be bound to
pay freight to the mariners, they shall pay to us and our heirs by name
of custom 2s. beyond the ancient customs due and accustomed to be paid
in money to us or others within forty days after the said wines be put
ashore out of the ships; further, on each sack of wool which the said
merchants or others in their name shall buy and take or cause to be
bought and taken from our realm, they shall pay 40d. of increment beyond
the ancient custom of half a mark which had before been paid; and for a
last of hides to be carried out of our realm and power half a mark above
that which before was paid of ancient custom; and likewise on 300
woolfells to be taken out of our realm and power 40d. beyond the xed sum
which had before been given of ancient custom; further, 2s. on each
scarlet and cloth dyed in grain; further, 18d. on each cloth wherein
part of the grain is intermixed; further, 12d. on each other cloth
without grain; further, 12d. on each quintal of wax.

And whereas some of the aforesaid merchants deal in other merchandise as
avoir-du-pois and other fine goods, such as cloths of Tars, silk,
cendals and other diverse wares, and horses also and other animals, corn
and other goods and merchandise which cannot easily be put at a fixed
custom, the same merchants have granted to give us and our heirs on each
pound of silver of the estimation or value of such goods and
merchandise, by what name soever they be known, 3d. in the pound at the
entry of those goods and merchandise into our realm and power aforesaid
within fifteen days after such goods and merchandise shall have been
brought into our realm and power and there unladen or sold; and likewise
3d. on each pound of silver at the export of any such goods and
merchandise bought in our realm and power aforesaid, beyond the ancient
customs before given to us or others; and touching the value and
estimation of such goods and merchandise whereon 3d. on each pound of
silver, as is aforesaid, are to be paid, credit shall be given to them
by the letters which they shall show from their lords or fellows, and if
they have no letters, it shall stand in this behalf by the oaths of the
merchants, if they be present, or of their yeomen in the absence of the
same merchants. It shall be lawful, moreover, for the fellows of the
fellowship of the merchants aforesaid to sell wools within our realm and
power aforesaid to other their fellows, and likewise to buy from the
same without payment of custom, so, nevertheless, that the said wools
come not to such hands that we be defrauded of the custom due to us.

And furthermore it is to be known that after the said merchants shall
have once paid in the form aforesaid in one place within our realm and
power the custom above granted to us for their merchandise, and have
their warrant thereof, they shall be free and quit in all other places
within our realm and power aforesaid of payment of such custom for the
same merchandise or wares by the same warrant, whether such merchandise
remain within our realm and power or be carried without, except wines
which shall in no wise be taken out of our realm and power aforesaid
without our will and license, as is aforesaid. And we will, and for us
and our heirs we grant that no exaction, prise or prest or any other
charge be in any wise imposed on the persons of the merchants aforesaid,
their merchandise or goods, against the form expressed and granted
above. These witnesses:--the venerable fathers, Robert, archbishop of
Canterbury, primate of all England, Walter, bishop of Coventry and
Lichfield, Henry de Lacy, earl of Lincoln, Humphrey de Bohun, earl of
Hereford and Essex and constable of England, Aymer de Valencia, Geoffrey
de Geynvill, Hugh le Despenser, Walter de Bello Campo, steward of our
household, Robert de Bures and others. Given by our hand at Windsor, 1
February in the 31st year of our reign.

[Footnote 251: From the confirmation by Edward III, see _Fædera_, II,
ii, 747; the charter is not among the enrolments of Edward I. These
customs were known as the petty custom, and this charter as the _Caria
Mercatoria_.]

[Footnote 252: Tolls for the repair of walls, bridges and streets.]

[Footnote 253: i.e. Wholesale.]


7. ADMINISTRATION OF THE SEARCH FOR MONEY EXPORTED [_Chancery
Miscellanea_, 60, 5, 153], 1303.

To the most excellent lord, the lord prince Edward, by the grace of God
King of England, Lord of Ireland, Duke of Aquitaine, his humble and
devoted mayor and bailiffs of the town of Southampton, obedience,
reverence and honour. We have received your command in these words:

Edward, by the grace of God, King of England, Lord of Ireland and Duke
of Aquitaine, to his mayor and bailiffs of Southampton, greeting.
Because we have learnt by an inquisition which we lately caused to be
made by our beloved and trusty Robert de Glamorgan and John de la Lee,
that Pelegrin de Castello, our merchant of Bayonne, wished to take the
24l.--which you, believing that he wished to carry the same to parts
beyond the sea against our prohibition that no man should carry any
money or silver in bullion out of our realm, arrested on that account in
a ship in our port of Southampton,--to the parts of Devon and Cornwall
to buy there lead and tin and other merchandise, and not to parts beyond
the sea against the prohibition aforesaid, as you charged against him:
We command you, as we have before commanded, that, if the aforesaid 24l.
have been arrested for the cause aforesaid and no other, then you cause
the same to be delivered without delay to the aforesaid Pelegrin, or
that you signify to us the cause wherefor you have refused or were
unable to execute our command before directed to you thereon.

Wherefore we signify to you that the searchers of the town of
Southampton aforesaid, by your writ of the wardrobe sealed with your
privy seal directed to the said searchers on 7 January commanding the
said 24l. to be brought to Odiham and delivered there into your said
wardrobe [paid and delivered the same], of which payment and delivery of
the said 24l. so made the aforesaid searchers have a due acquittance of
receipt. And by the tenour of these presents we signify that for no
other cause were the aforesaid 24l. arrested, save only in the form
aforesaid. In witness whereof we transmit to you these our letters
sealed with our seal. Given at Southampton, 9 March.

Wherefore the same Pelegrin sues for a writ of the lord the King to be
directed to the keeper of the wardrobe of the lord the King, for
satisfaction to be made to him according to the form of the return of
the writ.


8. PROVISIONS FOR THE CURRENCY [_Fine Roll, 9 Edward III. m. 10_], 1335.

The King to the sheriff of York, greeting. Forasmuch as we have heard
that many folk beyond the sea strive to counterfeit our good money, the
sterling of England, with worse money, and to send this bad money into
our realm, to the deception of us and the damage and oppression of our
people if a remedy be not set thereto; we, willing to prevent such
damages and oppressions, and to provide a suitable remedy hereon and
that our said good money may be multiplied within our realm and the
lands of our power, to the profit of us and our subjects, by assent of
the prelates, earls and barons of our said realm assembled in our
Parliament holden at York on the morrow of the Ascension last past,
have ordained and established the things that ensue in the manner
underwritten:--

First, it is provided that no man of religion or other henceforth carry
the sterling out of the realm of England, nor silver in plate, nor
vessels of gold or silver, on pain of forfeiture of the money, plate or
vessel that he shall carry, without special licence from us.

Further, that no false money nor counterfeit sterling be brought into
the realm or elsewhere in our power, on pain of forfeiture of the money;
so always that all folk of what realms or power soever they be, may
safely bring to the exchanges for bullion and not elsewhere silver in
plate, vessels of silver and all manner of moneys of silver, of what
value soever they be, save false money and counterfeit sterling, and
there receive good and suitable exchange.

And that no sterling halfpenny or farthing be molten to make a vessel or
other thing by goldsmiths or others on pain of forfeiture of the money
so molten, and that the goldsmith or other who shall have so molten it,
be put in prison and there stay until he shall have rendered to us the
moiety of that which he shall have so molten, notwithstanding charter or
franchise granted or used to the contrary.

And that all manner of black money now commonly current in our realm and
power be utterly excluded, so that none be current after the month next
after proclamation be made, on pain of forfeiture of the same money.

And that every man who will sue for us against such as shall commit
fraud against this ordinance be admitted hereto and have the fourth
penny of that which shall be so deraigned at his suit to our profit.

And that the mayor or bailiffs in every port where merchants and ships
are take oath of the merchants and masters of ships going and returning
that they will commit no fraud against this ordinance in any point.

And that there be a table of exchange at Dover and elsewhere where and
when it shall seem good to us and our council to make exchanges. And
that the wardens of the said tables make exchanges by testimony of the
controllers whom we will appoint there.

And that no pilgrim pass out of our realm to the parts beyond the sea
except at Dover, on pain of imprisonment for a year. And that good ward
and strict be made in all places on the seacoast in ports and elsewhere
where there is any manner of landing, by good and lawful men sworn, who
in our name shall cause diligent search to be made that none, of what
condition or estate soever he be, take sterling money, silver in plate,
or vessel of gold or silver out of our realm without our licence, nor
bring into the said realm or power false money or counterfeit sterling,
as is aforesaid, on the pains and forfeitures aforesaid. And the money,
vessel or plate so forfeited shall be delivered at our exchanges by
indenture, whereof the one part remaining with the searchers shall be
delivered at the Exchequer, and by the same indentures the warden of the
exchanges shall be charged with that which he shall have received.

And that the searchers have of our gift for all their work the fourth
penny of as much as they find so forfeited. And if the searchers make
release or show favour to any and be attainted hereof they shall be
liable to forfeiture of as much as they shall have in goods; and that
the hostlers in every port where there is passage shall be sworn to make
search upon their guests in like manner as the searchers shall do, and
shall have the fourth penny of that which they find forfeit to us, as
the said searchers shall have. And it is our intention that the said
searchers have power to search the hostels and to inform themselves of
the doings of hostlers; and that the hostlers, in case they be found
deceitful against the said articles, shall be punished and incur the
forfeiture aforesaid.

Wherefore we command you, straitly enjoining, that forthwith upon sight
of these letters you cause all the articles and points aforesaid to be
cried and published in cities and boroughs, market towns, ports and all
other places within your bailiwick, as well within franchise as without,
where you shall see fit so to do; and that in all other places within
your bailiwick where need shall be, except the places where such wardens
and searchers shall be deputed by us, you cause such searchers and
wardens to be established and sworn to keep and observe this our
ordinance in the form aforesaid, on the pains contained in this form;
and that you certify the Treasurer and Barons of our Exchequer without
delay of the names of those who shall be hereafter assigned by you as
searchers and wardens. Given under our great seal at York, 6th June in
the 9th year of our reign.

In like manner command is given to the several sheriffs throughout
England....

_The oath of the searchers._--You shall swear that you will well and
lawfully make search of all the things contained in your commission
whereof search ought to be made according to the commission, and that
you will lawfully perform all the other things contained in the same,
and that you will lawfully charge yourself with that which you shall
find forfeited to the King and will make a lawful indenture thereof and
render a lawful account, and that you will spare none for love or for
favour, to have private gain, whereby the King may be a loser. So help
you God and his saints.


9. OPINIONS OF OFFICERS OF THE MINT ON THE STATE OF ENGLISH MONEY [_Rot.
Parl., III._, 126-7], 1381-2.

To our lord the King and to all the lords and commons of his realm, make
known, as they have often done before these times without being heard,
the officers over the moneys of the Tower of London, how for lack of
good ordinance no gold or silver comes into England, but of that which
is in England a great part has been and from day to day is carried out
of the land, and that which remains in England by fault of the deceit of
clippers and otherwise is become right feeble, and from day to day such
damage increases. Wherefore please it you to take good counsel and
remedy hereon, otherwise we, the said officers, warn you, and before God
and before you we will be excused, that if you do not apply a speedy
remedy thereto in short time to come, where you think to have 5s. you
will not have 4s.

_Richard Leicester._--First, as to this that no gold or silver comes
into England, but that which is in England is carried beyond the sea, I
maintain that it is because the land spends too much in merchandise, as
in grocery, mercery and peltry, or wines, red, white and sweet, and also
in exchanges made to the Court of Rome in divers ways. Wherefore the
remedy seems to me to be that each merchant bringing merchandise into
England take out of the commodities of the land as much as his
merchandise aforesaid shall amount to; and that none carry gold or
silver beyond the sea, as it is ordained by statute. And let a good
ordinance be made hereof, as well by search as otherwise. And so meseems
that the money that is in England will remain, and great quantity of
money and bullion will come from the parts beyond the sea.

As to this, that the gold is right feeble because of clipping, there
seems to me no other remedy than that gold be generally weighed by those
who shall take it; and hereon let proclamation be made, and this will be
a smaller loss than to change the money, as may be more fully declared.

As to this, that there is a great lack of halfpence and farthings, the
Master is bound by his indenture to make halfpence according to the
quantity of his work of silver. Let the Warden of the Mint be charged to
survey that the Master of the Mint do in all points that which
appertains to his office.

As to this, that the gold agrees not with the silver, it cannot be
amended unless the money be changed. And to change the money in any
manner seems to me universal damage to the lords, commons and all the
realm, as may be more fully declared.

As to this, that new money is made in Flanders and in Scotland, let
proclamation be made that all manner of moneys, as well of Flanders,
Scotland and all other countries beyond the sea whatsoever, be forbidden
from having any currency in England, and that none take them in payment
except to bring them for bullion to the coinage of our lord the King.

Further, it will be altogether for the better and a very great profit to
all the commons, that of the gold money now current, which is so clipped
and otherwise impaired, that of this money, when it shall come to the
Tower and to the coinage, henceforth our lord the King take for his
seigneurage, and the Master for the work for him and his other officers,
nothing more than 10d. in the pound.

Further there will be an increase of the money and profit to the whole
realm if of all other bullion the King take only 12d. for his
seigneurage and the Master of the Mint 12d. for his work.

_Lincoln, Goldsmith._--To the noble lords of the Council of our lord the
King, touching the charge which you have given me, please you to take
note of this answer.

Touching the first article, that gold and silver is taken out of the
realm, the first remedy against this is that no clerk or purveyor be
suffered to take any silver or gold or to make any exchange to be taken
to the Court of Rome, and no merchant be suffered to pay any money but
only merchandise for merchandise; and also that the money of the Noble,
at the same weight that it now is, be put at a greater value.

And touching the second article, the remedy is that all the money be of
one weight, so that the money that is not of the weight ordained be
bought according to the value.

And touching the third article, the remedy is that halfpence and
farthings be made in great plenty.

And touching the fourth article, the remedy is that there be one weight
and one measure throughout the realm and that no subtle weight be
suffered.

And touching the fifth article, the remedy is contained above in the
first article.

_Richard Aylesbury._--As to this, that no gold or silver comes into
England, but that which is in England is carried beyond the sea, we
maintain that if the merchandise which goes out of England be well and
rightly governed, the money that is in England will remain and great
plenty of money will come from beyond the sea, that is to say, let not
more strange merchandise come within the realm than to the value of the
denizen merchandise which passes out of the realm.

Further he says that it were good if the Pope's Collector were English
and the Pope's money were sent to him in merchandise and not in money,
and that the passages of pilgrims and clerks be utterly forbidden, upon
pain, etc.

And as to this, that the gold is too feeble because of clipping, there
seems to us no other remedy than that the gold be generally weighed by
those who shall take it, and hereon let proclamation be made.

As to this, that the gold agrees not with the silver, it cannot be
amended unless the money be changed, and to this we dare not assent for
the common damage that might befall.

As to this, that new money is made in Flanders and in Scotland, let
proclamation be made that all manner of money of Scotland be forbidden.
Let other moneys also that come from beyond the sea have no currency in
England, and let none take them in payment except at the value to bring
for bullion and to the coinage of our lord the King. And let none take
gold or silver out of the realm beyond the sea, as it is ordained by
Statute, and hereof let good ordinance be made as well by search as
otherwise.

And further he says, if it please by way of information, that [it would
be well] if the pound of gold that is now made in the Tower to the sum
of 45 nobles (which pound, because the money thereof is so clipped and
otherwise impaired, is worth at present, taking one with another, 41-1/2
nobles), were made into 48 nobles, the noble to be current at the
present value; and let the King and the Master and other officers of the
Mint take 20d. in each pound for the seigneurage and work and every
other thing.



PART II: 1485-1660



SECTION I

RURAL CONDITIONS

   1. Villeinage in the Reign of Elizabeth, 1561--2. Customs of the
   Manor of High Furness, 1576--3. Petition in Chancery for Restoration
   to a Copyhold, c. 1550--4. Petition in Chancery for Protection
   against Breach of Manorial Customs, 1568--5. Lease of the Manor of
   Ablode to a Farmer, 1516--6. Lease of the Manor of South Newton to a
   Farmer, 1568--7. The Agrarian Programme of the Pilgrimage of Grace,
   1536--8. The Demands of the Rebels led by Ket, 1549--9. Petition to
   Court of Requests from Tenants Ruined by Transference of a Monastic
   Estate to lay hands, 1553--10. Petition to Court of Requests to stay
   Proceedings against Tenants pending the hearing of their Case by the
   Council of the North, 1576--11. Petition from Freeholders of Wootton
   Basset for Restoration of Rights of Common, _temp._ Charles I.--12.
   Petition to Crown of Copyholders of North Wheatley, 1629--13. An Act
   Avoiding Pulling Down of Towns, 1515--14. The Commission of Inquiry
   Touching Enclosures, 1517--15. An Act Concerning Farms and Sheep,
   1533-4--16. Intervention of Privy Council under Somerset to Protect
   Tenants, 1549--17. An Act for the Maintenance of Husbandry and
   Tillage, 1597-8--18. Speech in House of Commons on Enclosures,
   1597--19. Speeches in House of Commons on Enclosures, 1601--20.
   Return to Privy Council of Enclosers furnished by Justices of
   Lincolnshire, 1637--21. Complaint of Laud's Action on the Commission
   for Depopulation, 1641.


The agrarian changes which attracted attention from the latter part of
the fifteenth century to the accession of Elizabeth, and again, to a
less degree, at intervals between 1558 and 1660, are a watershed in
economic history, separating mediæval from modern England as decisively
as did, in other departments of national life, the Reformation and the
Tudor monarchy. For the controversial questions surrounding their
causes and consequences we must refer the student to the list of books
given below. All that can be attempted here is to notice the special
points upon which the following documents throw light.

In arranging the documents in this section it seemed best not to group
them in strict chronological order, but to place together those relating
to similar aspects of the subject. Documents 1 to 6 illustrate the
status and tenure of different classes of landholders. By the beginning
of the sixteenth century personal villeinage has almost disappeared;
only one document therefore (No. 1) is given to it. Nor has it seemed
necessary to print documents referring specially to the freeholders who,
compared with other classes of tenants, were little affected by the
agrarian changes. On the other hand, the position of the customary
tenants, and of the lessees who farmed manorial demesnes, raises
important questions. Documents 2 to 4 illustrate manorial customs and
the way in which cases between lords and copyholders turned upon them
(Nos 3 and 4). Without entering into controversial questions with regard
to copyhold tenure one may say (_a_) that it is customary or villein
tenure to which the courts from the beginning of the fifteenth century,
first the court of Chancery--before which both these cases come--and
then the Common Law courts, have given protection, (_b_) that what the
Courts do is to enforce manorial customs, which vary from place to
place. It is, therefore, essential for a tenant who wants, _e.g._, to be
protected against eviction (No. 3), or against loss of profitable rights
(No. 4) to show that the lord is committing a breach of the custom.
Hence the dispute (No. 3) as to whether the land at issue is customary
land or part of the lord's demesnes. If it is the former the tenants are
likely to be protected by the Courts: if it is the latter, they are not.
The position of the capitalist farmer, who played so large a part in the
rural economy of the sixteenth century, is illustrated by documents 5
and 6. No. 5 is specially interesting as showing how the earlier
practice of dividing up the demesne lands among numerous small tenants
was replaced by that of leasing them in a block to one large farmer.
Documents 7 to 12 illustrate certain points which have already been
mentioned, _e.g._, the importance of manorial customs (Nos. 8, 10 and
12). But their peculiar interest consists in the light which they throw
on the grievances of the peasants. They suffer from enclosing (Nos. 7,
8, 10, 11), from excessive fines (Nos. 8, 9, 10, 12), and from rack
renting (Nos. 8, 9, 12). They are gravely prejudiced by the land
speculation following the dissolution of the monasteries (No. 9). They
are too poor and too easily intimidated to get redress even when they
have a good case (Nos. 10, 11, 12). The justices who ought to administer
the acts against depopulation depopulate themselves (No. 8). The
peasants' main resource is the Crown and its Prerogative Courts (Nos. 8,
9, 10, 12). Surely the government will protect men who make good
soldiers and pay taxes (No. 12)! Occasionally, however, they have some
hope of Parliament, _e.g._, in 1536, when the royal officials are in bad
odour in the North (No. 7), and under Charles I (No. 11). The exact date
of this last document is uncertain. May it not be 1640-1, when the Long
Parliament was going to restore all good customs?

Documents 13 to 21 illustrate the policy of the government towards the
agrarian problem. The government tried to stop depopulation partly for
financial and military reasons, partly through a genuine dislike of
economic oppression. Its main instruments were four, namely:--(_a_)
Statutes (Nos. 13, 15, 17, 18, and 19). Between 1489 and 1597 11 Acts
were passed which had as their object the prevention of depopulation,
viz., 4 Hen. VII, c. 19, 6 Hen. VIII, c. 5, 7 Hen. VIII, c. 1, 25 Hen.
VIII, c. 13, 27 Hen. VIII, c. 22, 5 and 6 Ed. VI, c. 5, 2 and 3 Phil.
and Mary, c. 2, 5 Eliz. c. 2, 31 Eliz. c. 7, 39 Eliz. c. 1, 39 Eliz. c.
2,. All these were repealed by 21 James I, c. 25, except the last, which
was repealed by the Statute Law Revision Act of 1863. (For a summary of
these Acts see Slater, _The English Peasantry and of the Enclosure
Common Fields, App. D._) (_b_) Royal Commissions. The first (No. 14) was
appointed in 1517: 6 others followed, in 1548, 1566, 1607, 1632, 1635,
and 1636 (No. 21). (_c_) Intervention by the Privy Council (Nos. 16 and
20). (_d_) The Prerogative Courts; viz., the Court of Requests (Nos. 9
and 10), the Court of Star Chamber (No. 21), the Council of the North
(No. 10), and the Council of Wales (Acts of the Privy Council, New
Series, Vol. XXX, pp. 36-7). How far their intervention was successful
is an open question, for a discussion of which reference must be made to
the books mentioned below.


AUTHORITIES

   The more accessible of the modern writers dealing with agrarian
   conditions from 1485-1660 are:--Cunningham, _English Industry and
   Commerce, Early and Middle Ages_, and _ibid._, _Modern Times_, Part
   I; Ashley, _Economic History_, Vol. I, Part II; Nasse, _The Land
   Community of the Middle Ages_; Gonner, _Common Land and Inclosure_;
   Page, _The End of Villeinage in England_; Hasbach, _The English
   Agricultural Labourer_; Prothero, _Pioneers and Progress of English
   Agriculture_, and _A History of English Farming_; Johnson, _The
   Disappearance of the Small Landowner_; Tawney, _The Agrarian Problem
   in the Sixteenth Century_; Russell, _Ket's Rebellion in Norfolk_;
   Leadam, _The Domesday of Inclosures_, and in Trans. R.H.S. New
   Series, Vol. VI; Gay, in Trans. R.H.S., New Series, Vols. XIV and
   XVIII, and in _The Quarterly Journal of Economics_, Vol. XVIII;
   Leonard, Trans. R.H.S., New Series, Vol. XIX; Savine in _The
   Quarterly Journal of Economics_, Vol. XIX. A useful summary of the
   principle Statutes against Depopulation is given by Slater, _The
   English Peasantry and the Enclosure of the Common Fields_, App. D.

   Full bibliographies of this subject are given in _Two Select
   Bibliographies of Mediæval Historical Study_, by Margaret E. Moore,
   and in _A Classified List of Printed Original Materials for English
   Manorial and Agrarian History_, by Francis G. Davenport. The
   following list of sources does not pretend to be exhaustive.

   (1) Documents relating to agrarian history are printed in the
   following works:--Northumberland County History; Baigent, Crondal
   Records; Surveys of Lands belonging to William, first Earl of
   Pembroke (Roxburghe Club); Topographer and Genealogist, Vol. I,
   Surveys of Manors Belonging to the Duke of Devonshire; Chetham
   Society, Survey of the Manor of Rochdale (ed. by Fishwick);
   Davenport, History of a Norfolk Manor; Scrope, History of the Manor
   and Barony of Castle Combe; Strype, Ecclesiastical Memorials; Selden
   Society, Select Cases in the Court of Star Chamber and Select Cases
   in the Court of Requests (both edited by Leadam); Leadam, The
   Domesday of Enclosures; Tawney, The Agrarian Problem in the Sixteenth
   Century, App. I; Cunningham English Industry and Commerce, Modern
   Times, Vol. I, App. B.

   (2) The principal contemporary literary authorities are as
   follows:--J. Rossus (Rous), Historia regum Angliæ (about 1470, edited
   by T. Hearne); More, Utopia (1516); Starkey, A Dialogue between
   Cardinal Pole and Thomas Lupset (about 1537, Early English Text
   Society, England in the Reign of King Henry VIII); Forest, The
   Pleasant Poesy of Princely Practice (1548, _ibid._); Fitzherbert,
   Surveying (1539), and Book of Husbandry (1534); Select Works of
   Crowley (Early English Text Society); Lever's Sermons (Arber's
   Reprints); The Common Weal of this Realm of England (about 1549,
   edited by E.M. Lamond); Certain causes Gathered Together wherein is
   shewed the Decay of England only by the great Multitude of Sheep
   (Early English Text Society); Tusser, Five Hundred Points of Good
   Husbandry (1572); Stubbes, Anatomy of the Abuses in England (1583);
   Harrison, The Description of Britain (1587, most accessible in
   Furnivall's Elizabethan England); Trigge, The Humble Petition of Two
   Sisters (1604); Norden, The Surveyor's Dialogue (1607); Standish, The
   Common's Complaint (1612), and New Directions of Experience to the
   Common's Complaint (1613); Bacon, The History of King Henry VII
   (1622); Powell, Depopulation Arraigned (1636); Fuller, The Holy and
   Profane State (1642); Halhead, Enclosure Thrown Open, or Depopulation
   Depopulated (1650); Moore, The Crying Sin of England in not Caring
   for the Poor (1653); and A Scripture Word Against Enclosure (1656);
   Pseudonismus, Considerations Concerning Common Fields and Enclosures
   (1653); Lee, A Vindication of a Regulated Enclosure (1656).


1. VILLEINAGE IN THE REIGN OF ELIZABETH _[Tingey. Selected Records of
Norwich, Vol. VI, p. 180_], 1561.

Robert Ringwood brought in a certain indenture wherein Lewis Lowth was
bound to him to serve as a prentice for seven years, and Mr. John
Holdiche came before the Mayor and other Justices and declared that the
said Lewis is a bondman to my Lord of Norfolk's grace, and further that
he was brought up in husbandry until he was xx years old. Whereupon he
was discharged of his service.[254]

[Footnote 254: The above case is remarkable as illustrating (_a_) the
survival of villeinage as a working reality into the reign of Elizabeth;
(_b_) the use of Statute law (growing since the first Statute of
Labourers) to supplement the (legally) almost extinct jurisdiction of
lord over villein.]


2. CUSTOMS OF THE MANOR OF HIGH FURNESS [_R.O. Duchy of Lancaster;
Special Commissions; No. 398_], 1576.

[_Presentment of customs of the manor._]

For the Queen.

3. That the jury ought to present at the court after every tenant's
death or alienation, and who is his heir, and which tenant hath aliened,
and to whom, and what, and who ought to be admitted tenant to the same,
which presentment and admittance ought to be made in open court and be
entered by the steward ... in this form.

_Ad hanc curiam juratores presentant quod C.D. tenens customarius hujus
manerii, seisitus in dominico suo ut de feodo secundum consuetudinem
manerii unius messuagii etc, post ultimam curiam alienavit tenementa
predicta cuidam H.F. habenda et tenenda eidem H.F. et heredibus suis
secundum consuetudinem manerii, per quod predictus H.F. per
consuetudinem manerii debet solvere dominae Reginae pro ingressu suo
inde habendo 20s._

4. No person shall hereafter sell his customary tenement or any part of
it, before he first be admitted tenant or come to court, and require to
be admitted ... offering his fine for the same.

The purchaser of any tenement shall publish the sale at the next court
after the purchase, and cause it to be entered on the rolls, that her
Majesty may be duly answered of the fines, forfeitures and duties as
well of the seller as the purchaser [penalty 20s.]. Any purchaser not so
coming to the second court after the purchase shall forfeit 40s., and
the lands purchased shall be seized by the steward.

5. As heretofore dividing and portioning of tenements hath caused great
decay chiefly of the service due to her Highness for horses, and of her
woods, and has been the cause of making a great number of poor people in
the lordship, it is now ordered that no one shall divide his tenement or
tenements among his children, but that the least part shall be of the
ancient yearly rent to her Highness of 6s. 8d., and that before every
such division there shall be several houses and ousettes for every part
of such tenement.

Provided always that it be lawful for any one, who has bought any
tenement or farmhold under the yearly rent of 6s. 8d. having houses and
ousette upon it, which has been used as a dwelling house, [to leave it]
to which of his children he thinks best.

And no person holding any part of any tenement shall bargain or put it
away to any person except that person who is tenant of the residue of
the tenement, if he will buy it at a reasonable price. If not, the
tenant may sell it to any other customary tenant of the manor.

10. Every customary tenant and occupier shall uphold his houses
according to our custom, forfeiting 6s. 8d. _toties quoties_.

11. No person shall fell timber without delivery of the bailiff, who
shall deliver necessary timber to every tenant or occupier according to
our custom.

12. No tenant or occupier shall sell underwood, etc., nor cut down any
other man's wood in the lordship. Penalty 3s. 4d., half to her Highness,
half to the party grieved. Every tenant so grieved may have his action
for damages in the court of the lordship.

13. No tenant is to stop any common way nor turn aside a beck. Penalty
6s. 8d.

For the tenants.

1. Any tenant, lawfully seised of a messuage or tenement in fee to him
and his heirs according to the custom of the manor, might and may
lawfully give or sell the same by writing, and that the steward or his
deputy ought to be made privy to it at or before next court under
penalty of 20s.

The tenant may without the privity of the steward give his tenement in
writing by his last will to which of his sons he thinks best, or any
other person. If any customary tenant die seised of an estate of
inheritance without a will or devise, then his eldest son or next cousin
ought to have the tenement, as his next heir, according to the custom of
the manor.

2. If any customary tenant die seised of a customary tenement, having no
sons but a daughter or daughters, then the eldest daughter being
unpreferred in marriage shall have the tenement as his next heir, ...
and she shall pay to her younger sister, if she have but one sister, 20
years' ancient rent, as is answered to her Majesty; and if she have more
than one sister, she shall pay 40 years' ancient rent to be equally
divided among them.

3. The widow of any customary tenant having any estate of inheritance
ought to have her widowright, viz., one-third of the same, as long as
she is unmarried and chaste, according to our custom.

4. For the avoiding of great trouble in the agreements with younger
brothers, it is now ordered that the oldest son shall pay to his
brothers in the form following:--

If there is but 1 brother, 12 years' ancient rent.

If there are 2 brothers, 16 years' ancient rent, to be equally divided.

If there be 3 or more, 20 years' ancient rent, to be equally divided.

Provided that any father being a tenant may make a will dividing the
money among his sons as he think best, provided he exceed not these sums
and rates.

5. Whereas great inconvenience has grown by certain persons that at the
marriages of sons or daughters have promised their tenements to the same
son or daughter and their heirs according to the custom of the manor,
and afterwards put the tenement away to another person, it is ordered,
that whatever tenements a tenant shall promise to his son or daughter
being his sole heir apparent at the time of his or her marriage, the
same ought to come to them according to the same covenant, which ought
to be showed at the next court.

6. If a tenant has a child, not his heir, an idiot or impotent, and die
without disposition of his tenement, the same child shall be sustained
out of the said tenement by direction of the steward or his deputy and 4
men sworn in court.

7. Finally be it agreed that no bye-law shall be any way prejudicial to
her Majesty.


3. PETITION IN CHANCERY FOR RESTORATION TO A COPYHOLD [_Record
Commission. Chancery Proceedings, Ed. VI_], c. 1550.

Richard Cullyer and John Cullyer _v._ Thomas Knyvett, esquire.

   To quiet Plaintiff in possession of certain land holden of the manor
   of Cromwell in Wymondham by copy of court roll, according to the
   custom of the said manor.

   To the right honorable Sir Richard Rich, knight, lord Rich and lord
   Chancellor of England.

In most humble wise sheweth and complaineth unto your lordship your
daily orators, Richard Cullyer of Wymondham in the county of Norfolk,
yeoman, and John Cullyer his son, that where one Edmund Mychell was
seised in his demesne as of fee of and in twenty acres of land lying in
Wymondham aforesaid, holden of the manor of Cromwell, in Wymondham
aforesaid, by copy of court roll at will of the lord of the said manor,
according to the custom of the said manor, which twenty acres of land
have used to be demised and demittable by copy of court roll for term of
life, lives, or in fee, to be holden at will of the lord of the said
manor by copy of court roll, according to the custom of the said manor
time out of remembrance of man; and the said Edmund Mychell, so being
seised of the said twenty acres, for a sum of money to him paid by the
said Richard Cullyer, the father, did surrender the said twenty acres
according to the custom of the said manor, by the name of twenty acres
of bond land enclosed in a close called Reading, in Brawyck, in
Wymondham aforesaid, into the hands of the lords of the said manor by
the hands of William Smythe, in the presence of Geoffry Symondes and
John Love, being then copyholders of the said manor, to the use of your
said orators, their heirs and assigns: By force whereof your said
orators, after that they had paid the accustomable fine due for the same
to the lords of the said manor, were admitted tenants thereof, to hold
the same, to them and their heirs, at will of the lord of the said manor
by copy of court roll, according to the custom of the said manor, and
from the time of the said surrender which was made, as is aforesaid,
thirty years past; and continued seised of the said twenty acres in
their demesne as of fee, as tenants at will, by copy of court roll,
according to the custom of the said manor; and have received and taken
the profits thereof, doing and paying the rents, customs and services of
the same to the lords of the same manor, according to the custom of the
said manor; and at their great travail, costs, and charges have stubbed,
drained, and dyked the premises, whereby they have improved the said
twenty acres and made it much better than it was at the time that the
same was surrendered to them as is aforesaid: And now so it is, right
honorable lord, that the moiety of the said manor is descended to one
Thomas Knyvett esquire, as son and heir to Sir Edmund Knyvett, knight,
deceased, who, of a covetous mind, contrary to the mind and without the
assent of one John Flowrdew, gentleman, who is tenant in common with
him of the said manor land, of late claimed ten acres of the said twenty
acres to be the demesnes of the said manor, and have prohibited your
said orators to occupy the same ten acres; and because your said orators
doth not leave the occupation thereof, the said Thomas Knyvett hath
divers times disturbed the possession of your orators in the premises by
taking of divers distresses, and now of late have taken and distrained
in the said close four steers and one bull of the value of five pounds,
of the goods and chattels of the said John Cullyer, one of your said
orators; which the said Thomas did impound and withhold from your said
orators until deliverance was made to him thereof by virtue of the
King's majesty's writ of _replevin_; which writ of _replevin_ is removed
into the King's court of his common pleas at Westminster, by a writ of
_recordere facias [sic]_, where the said suit doth yet depend
undetermined; and forasmuch as your said beseechers have no better
estate in the premises but as copyholders according to the custom of the
said manor, and that the court rolls of the said manor, whereby your
beseechers should prove the said twenty acres to be an ancient copyhold
land, do remain in the possession of the said Thomas Knyvett, and for
that also that your orators be poor men and the said Thomas Knyvett a
gentleman of great worship, your said poor orators be most like to lose
their said land, and to be clearly without remedy in the premises,
unless your lordship's favour be to them shewed in that behalf: In
consideration whereof, it may please your lordship to grant the King's
most gracious writ of _subpoena_, to be directed to the said Thomas
Knyvett, commanding him by virtue thereof personally to appear before
your lordship in the King's most honorable court of Chancery at a
certain day, and under a certain pain, by your lordship to be appointed,
then and there to answer the premises, and further to abide to such
order therein as shall seem to your lordship agreeing to equity and good
conscience; and your poor orators shall daily pray for the prosperous
estate of your good lordships in honour long to continue.

_Answer._

   The answer of Thomas Knivet, esquire, to the bill of complaint of
   Richard Cullyer and John Cullyer, plaintiffs.

The said defendant saith, that the said bill of complaint is uncertain
and untrue in itself, and insufficient in the law to be answered unto,
and that the matters therein contained be untruly surmised by the said
complainants to the only intent to put the said defendant to vexation,
trouble and cost, and is grounded of malice, they the said complainants
having no colour of right, title, nor interest unto the said land
mentioned in the said bill of complaint; and he, the said defendant, to
the matters contained in the same bill, doth think that he by the order
of the right honorable court shall not be compelled any further to
answer, but be dismissed out of the same for the insufficiency thereof,
with his reasonable costs and charges by him sustained in that behalf;
Yet nevertheless, if he, the said defendant, shall be compelled any
further to answer to the same bill, then he, the same defendant, for
further answer saith that the said land, lying in Brawyck Reading
mentioned in the said bill of complaint, is and have been time out of
mind parcel of the demesnes of the said moiety of the said manor of
Cromwell, in Wymondham; and he, the said defendant, for further answer
saith, that one Sir Edmund Knyvett, father to the said defendant, and
all his ancestors of long time before him, have been seised of one
estate of inheritance of the moiety of the said manor, and one-half of
the said manor of Cromwell, and that the said Sir Edmund, and all his
ancestors, of long time have been seised of the premises with the
appurtenances as parcel of the said manor, in their demesne as of fee,
and had the possession thereof, and so seised, died thereof by
protestation seised; after whose death the premises descended and came
and of right ought to descend and come unto the said defendant, as to
the son and next heir of the said Sir Edmund, by force whereof he, the
same defendant, entered into the premises, and was and is thereof seised
in his demesne as of fee, and the same complainants, claiming the
premises by force of a surrender made unto them, the said complainants,
by one Edmund Mychell in the time of one [_blank_] being guardian of the
said Sir Edmund, and having the custody of the body and lands of the
said Sir Edmund during his minority, where nothing in right nor law can
pass by the same surrender, but the same is utterly void to bind the
said defendant, did enter; upon whom the said defendant did re-enter, as
it was lawful for him to do, without that the said Edmund Mychell was
lawfully seised in his demesne as of fee, of the lands mentioned in the
said bill by copy of court roll at will of the lord according to the
custom of the said manor, as in the said bill is untruly alleged, or
that the said Edmund Mychell had any lawful interest in the same, or
could lawfully make any good or effectual surrender of the same to the
said complainants, or that the premises have been used to be demitted or
be demittable by copy of court roll for term of life or lives, or in
fee, to be holden at the will of the lord by copy of court roll,
according to the custom of the said manor time out of mind, as in the
said bill of complaint is also untruly alleged, for he, the said
defendant, saith that by divers ancient precedents and court rolls ready
to be shewed to your honourable court it may appear that the same hath
been letten for term of years by the lords of the said manor after the
time being unto them, by whom the said complainants claim; or that the
same Edmund Mychell for a sum of money to him paid by Richard Cullyer,
their father, did surrender the premises, as in the same bill is also
untruly alleged, for he, the said defendant, saith, that he the same
Edmund had no right nor lawful interest to surrender the same; and if
any such surrender were, yet the said defendant saith that the same is
verily void in law; or that the said complainants paid any fine for the
premises, or were admitted tenants to hold at the will of the lord, as
in the same bill is also untruly alleged. And if any such were, yet the
same being paid unto his father's said guardian, and their admission by
the said guardian, the premises being of the demesnes of the said manor,
ought not in no wise to bind him; and without that any other thing
mentioned in the said bill of complaint here in this answer not
sufficiently confessed, and avoided, traversed, or denied, is true or
material to be answered unto, all which matters the said defendant is
ready to aver and prove, as this right honorable court shall award.
Whereupon the said defendant prayeth to be dismissed out of this right
honorable court with his reasonable costs and charges by him sustained
in that behalf.

REPLICATION

   The replication of Richard Cullyer and John Cullyer, to the answer of
   Thomas Knyvett esquire.

The said complainants by protestation that the said answer is
insufficient in the law for further replication say that the said bill
of complaint is certain and sufficient in the law to be answered unto,
and for further replication say that the said twenty acres mentioned in
the said bill is ancient copyhold land, and have been used to be demised
by copy of court roll, according to the custom of the said manor of
Cromwell time out of remembrance of man, as is alleged in the said bill,
and say also that the said twenty acres lieth now enclosed and have lien
enclosed by the space of sixty years or thereabout with other lands and
tenements holden by copy of court roll of the manor of Gresshawgh in
Wymondham aforesaid, which said twenty acres about the first or second
year of the reign of King Henry the Seventh, before that time with other
of the said lands then also enclosed did lie open as fields, and in the
time of the reign of King Edward the Fourth the said twenty acres were
holden, used, and occupied by copy of court roll, according to the
custom of the said manor, to one Edmund Cullyer and his heirs, by the
name of the third part of one enclose called Reading, being bond or
customary land in Wymondham aforesaid, to hold the same to the said
Edmund and his heirs by copy of court roll, at will of the lord of the
said manor according to the custom of the said manor; upon which grant
the said Edmund paid a fine to the lord of the said manor and was
admitted tenant thereof, by force whereof the said Edmund Cullyer was
seised of the said twenty acres in his demesne as of fee by copy of
court roll at will of the lord of the said manor, according to the
custom of the said manor, and the said Edmund so being seised of the
said twenty acres, the same did surrender according to the custom of the
said manor to one Thomas Plomer and his heirs, by virtue whereof the
said Thomas Plomer was admitted tenant of the said twenty acres,
according to the custom of the said manor, and was seised of the said
twenty acres in his demesne as of fee according to the custom of the
said manor, and paid the accustomable fine thereof for the same to the
lord of the said manor, and did the other services and paid the rents
thereof according to the custom of the said manor; and the said Thomas
Plomer so being seised of the said twenty acres the same did surrender
according to the custom of the said manor to the said Edmund Mychell
named in the said bill, by virtue whereof the said Edmund Mychell was
lawfully admitted tenant to the premises, according to the custom of
the said manor, and was seised thereof in his demesne as of fee
according to the said custom, and paid the accustomable fine for the
same to the lord of the said manor, and did the services and paid also
the rents thereof accordingly, and the said Edmund Mychell so being
seised of the premises according to the custom of the said manor, the
same according to the said custom did surrender to the said
complainants, as is alleged in the said bill; by virtue whereof the said
complainants were admitted tenants of the premises and paid the fine
thereof, and have done all services, and paid the rents and customs
pertaining thereto, according to the custom of the said manor of
Cromwell, and hath bestowed great costs upon the same, whereby the said
twenty acres be much better than they were at such time as the said
complainants were admitted tenants thereto, as in the said bill it is
further alleged. And the said complainants do further reply and say in
all and everything as they before in their said bill have said, without
that,[255] that the said land lying in Brawicke Reading mentioned in the
said bill is and have been time out of mind of man parcel of demesnes of
the moiety of the said manor of Cromwell, or that the said Sir Edmund
had the possession of the said twenty acres, or were seised thereof,
otherwise than by the payment of the rents of the same by the said
complainants and others, that did hold the same by copy of the said Sir
Edmund; and without that the said Sir Edmund died seised thereof, or
that the same did descend to the said defendant as demesnes of the said
manor discharged of the said tenure, by copy of court roll according to
the custom of the said manor; for the said complainants say that the
said Sir Edmund during all his life did permit and suffer the said
complainants to enjoy the premises according to the custom of the said
manor, without let or gainsaying, which the said Sir Edmund would not
have done if the said complainants had not had a just right and title to
have had the same; without that, that the said complainants did claim
the premises only by a surrender made to the said Mychell by the
guardian of the said Sir Edmund during his minority, or that the
surrender made by the said Mychell during the minority of the said Sir
Edmund is void by the law or that the law is that nothing can pass by a
surrender made during the said minority, or that a surrender made then
is void, or that the premises have been letten for years as is alleged
in the said bill; and the said complainants for replication do reply and
say in all and every thing, matter, and sentence as they before in their
said bill have said; without that, that any other things in this
replication not sufficiently replied unto, denied, traversed, or
confessed and avoided is true, all which matters the said complainants
are ready to verify as this honorable court will award, and pray as they
before have prayed.

[Footnote 255: _i.e._ Not admitting.]


4. PETITION IN CHANCERY FOR PROTECTION AGAINST BREACH OF MANORIAL
CUSTOMS [R.O. _Chancery Proceedings; Series II, Bundle 196, No. 25_],
1568.

   To the right honorable Sir Nicholas Bacon, knight, Lord Keeper of the
   Great Seal of England.

In most humble wise sheweth and complaineth to your good Lordship your
daily orators John Wyat, John Blake, John Whittington, Thomas Knight,
Thomas Ellis, Thomas Moris, Richard Cooke, Symon Lucas, and Richard
Blake, with divers other poor men to the number of forty, customary
tenants of the manor of Slindon in the County of Sussex.[period? or
comma?] That where they and their ancestors and those whose estate they
have in the said customary tenements, parcel of the said manor (time out
of memory of man) have been seised to them and to their heirs for ever
according to the custom of the said manor, all and every which customs
of late one Anthony Kempe esquire, lord of the said manor, hath
diversely, contrary to conscience and equity, devised and imagined by
divers indirect means to break, annihilate, and infringe, and your said
orators hath diversely vexed and troubled by the order of the common
laws and menaceth to expel your said orators out of their several
tenements unless they will pay other customs and services than they of
right ought to do by the customs of the said manor. For where by the
custom of the said manor your Lordship's said orators and those whose
estate they or any of them have in the premises, have been lawfully and
quietly seised of the said tenements customary in their demesne as of
fee according to the custom of the said manor for the several services
thereupon due and accustomed, clearly discharged of all day works,
licences of marriage or fines for the same, and having always free
liberty to let all and singular the premises aforesaid without any
licence beforehand to be obtained of the lords of the said manor for the
time being, neither have further at any time done any manner of services
whatsoever out of the said manor: And also where after the death of
every of the said customary tenants, having a whole yardland, there hath
been due for heriot only the best beast, and if such have no beast, then
10s. in money only; and after the death of every tenant holding half a
yardland 6s. 8d. for relief only, and after the death of every cottager
6d. only, and at every alienation of a yardland 10s. in money, and at
every alienation of a half yardland 6s. 8d. in money, and at the
alienation of every cottage 6d., and at the death and alienation of
every tenant one whole year's rent only for and in the name of a fine,
over and besides the only heriot or relief aforesaid, and suit of court
and other services in this bill specified: And where by the further
custom of the said manor the lords of the said manor for the time being
by the custom of the said manor should make no seizure or forfeiture for
waste done in their cottages customary, unless the same be severally
presented at the several Courts to be holden one half year after
another, and the same yet then not reformed within one month after; And
where the cutting down of any the woods standing and growing upon their
several tenements customary for house-bote, fire-bote, plough-bote,
cart-bote, gate-bote and hedge-bote, and such like hath not heretofore
been taken for waste but always as lawful to do by the custom of the
said manor; And where also by the further custom of the said manor,
where any forfeiture is committed, perpetrated or done for any offence
whatsoever whereby there is given cause of seizure and forfeiture to the
lord of the manor for the time being, yet by the custom of the same
manor, the said forfeiture notwithstanding, they to whom the same so
forfeited should descend, remain, come, or grow after the death of such
tenant so offending, should and may lawfully claim all and singular such
tenements so forfeited or seized after the death of such offender, as
though no such forfeiture had been made; And where by the custom of the
said manor all and every the tenants of the said manor should and ought
to have from time to time in the woods of the lord of the said manor
sufficient timber for reparations of their said tenements customary at
the assignment of the lord or his officers, and if the lord the same
refuse to do upon reasonable request being thereof made to the said lord
or his steward of his court for the time being, if then their said
tenements decay, or fall down in default of reparations, there shall nor
ought any forfeiture or seizure to be made for any such waste; And where
the widows of the tenants customary of the said manor should and ought
by the custom of the said manor have their widow's estate for one penny
only; And where by their further custom the eldest son, brother or next
cousin, male or female, should inherit and have the said customaries and
after the decease of their ancestors only; And where by the custom of
the said manor it is lawful for the said tenants as aforesaid to assign
and demise the several tenements for years to any person or persons at
their will and pleasure, yet nevertheless by the custom of the said
manor it hath been lawful for the lord of the said manor misliking the
said undertenant upon one year's warning to expel and put out such
tenant, after which it shall be lawful for the said tenants that so did
demise or let their tenements to re-enter and the same to enjoy as
before, and after to let the same as before to any person or persons in
manner and form aforesaid, until such person shall be by the lord
misliked and expulsed as aforesaid; And where by the further custom of
the said manor the said tenants and every of them and their heirs and
assigns should and ought to have the masting of their own hogs in the
time of mast in the north woods of the said manor of Slindon, and
likewise the pasturing of their cattle and sheep in the said woods and
in all other the lord's commons of the said manor, paying for the
ovissing[256] and masting of every hog 2d. only; And whereas by the
further custom of the said manor the tenants aforesaid have and may at
their will and pleasure surrender into the hands of two tenants of the
said manor out of the court, or into the hands of the lord or his
steward in the court, to the use of any person or person of such estate
as they shall declare and limit upon the said surrender, yet
nevertheless by the custom of the said manor it is not lawful for any
tenant of the said manor to convey, surrender or alienate any one part,
parcel or piece of their tenement customary, unless he give and
surrender the whole to the use of one only person in possession; And
where the youngest tenant of any customary tenement for the time being
ought to be crier in the lord's court by the custom of the said manor:
All which customs are not only to be proved to be the old and ancient
customs of the said manor, but also now of late the said Anthony Kempe
hath by his deed indented declared the same to be true in manner and
form as it is before alleged; And where by the said Indenture the said
Anthony Kempe hath further, for and in consideration of a further and a
new rent of eight pounds to him granted, and for and in consideration of
twenty pounds to him paid, and for and in consideration to make a
perpetual and final end of all controversies heretofore moved and after
to be moved, doth further covenant and grant in the said indenture that
it shall be lawful for the customary tenants and copyholders of the said
manor to enclose, and sever, and severally to hold to them and to their
heirs and assigns forever six score acres of land, parcel of the wastes
of the lords of the said manor, wherein they now have common, in such
place convenient to be limited before the feast of Easter next coming,
by consent of two persons to be named by the said Anthony Kempe and two
other persons by the said tenants; All the which premises
notwithstanding, the said Anthony Kempe doth against all conscience
utterly deny unto your Lordship's said orators their said customs and
the aforesaid further agreement according to the said indenture, and
doth daily vex your said orators quietly to have and enjoy their said
customary tenants [_sic_] with their appurtenances according to the
customs aforesaid. May it therefore please your good lordship the
premises favourably tendering to grant the Queen's Majesty's writ of
_subpoena_ to be directed to the said Anthony Kempe commanding him
thereby personally to appear in this honourable Court at a day certain
in the said writ of _subpoena_ mentioned, then and there upon his
corporal oath to answer to the premises and to abide such order therein
as to your Lordship shall upon the truth of the matter appearing seem
according to equity; and your said poor orators shall daily pray to God
for the continual preservation of your honor.

EDWARD FENNER.

[Footnote 256: _i.e._ Pasturing.]


5. LEASE[257] OF THE MANOR OF ABLODE TO A FARMER [_Rolls Series.
Historia et Cartularium Monasterii Gloucestriæ, Vol. III, pp. 291-5_],
1516.

This indenture made on the 5th day of October in the seventh year of
King Henry VIII between William ... Abbot of St. Peter ... of the one
part and Richard Cockes and Catharine his wife ... and William and John,
sons of the said Richard and Catharine, of the other part, witnesseth,
that the aforesaid Abbot and Convent ... have leased, demised, and to
farm let to Richard, Catharine, William, and John, the site of their
Manor of Ablode, situated in the county of Gloucester, with all its
houses, buildings, arable lands, meadows, feedings and pastures,
dovecotes, weir, waters, fishpools, and rabbit warrens, with all and
everything thereto pertaining. And the said abbot and convent have
leased to the aforesaid ... divers goods and chattels, moveable, and
immoveable, pertaining to the said manor. ... Moreover the said abbot
and convent have leased to the said ... 320 sheep remaining for stock on
the said manor, priced per head at 16d., which amounts in all to the sum
of 21l. 6s. 8d., together with their meadows, pastures and all easements
... needed for the support of the said sheep.... Furthermore the said
abbot and convent have leased to the aforesaid ... divers lands and
demesne meadows belonging to the said manor, when the reversion thereof
shall in any way have occurred, which lands and demesne meadows are now
occupied by the customary tenants of the lord, as is plain from the
rental drawn on the back of the present indenture.... And it shall be
lawful for the aforesaid Richard, Catharine, William and John, or any of
them to introduce at their pleasure new tenants on all those demesne
lands aforesaid, now in the hands of the tenants there, whenever the
aforesaid reversion shall have fallen in.

[Footnote 257: The most interesting clauses in the lease are (_a_) that
which relates to the leasing of the stock of the manor ("Stock and land
lease"); (_b_) the last, which shows how the practice of leasing a manor
to one large farmer replaced the earlier practice of leasing parts of it
to numerous small tenants.]


6. LEASE OF THE MANOR OF SOUTH NEWTON TO A FARMER [_Roxburghe Club,
Surveys of the lands belonging to William Earl of Pembroke_], 1568.

John Rabbett holds to himself and his assigns, by an indenture dated
November 28 in the fourth year of Elizabeth, at a fine of £120, the
whole site of the farm of the Manor of South Newton in the county of
Wilts., all its demesne lands, meadows, marshes, pastures, commons,
fisheries, and the customary works of the tenants in South Newton,
Stovord, and Childhampton, with all and singular their appurtenances in
the above-mentioned South Newton belonging to the site and the farm or
of old demised to farm with the above-mentioned site, as fully as Lewis
ap Jevan had and occupied it, and also one virgate of land and one ham
of meadow, lying in the afore-mentioned South Newton, called the
Parson's yardland and ham with a sheep pasture, ... excepted and
altogether reserved to the lord and his heirs the advowson of the
vicarage there; the said John Rabbett and his assigns to have and to
hold the aforesaid ... from Michaelmas before this indenture for the
full term of 21 years, paying thence yearly to the lord for the
aforesaid farm and site with its appurtenances

  per bs. 12d. 4l.
  10 quarters of wheat
  prec. cap. 4d. 6s. 8d.
  20 capons,

  per bs. 8d. 106s. 8d.
  29 quarters of barley,
  prec. cap. 4d. 6s. 8d.
  20 pigeons,

  per bs. 3d. 26s. 8d.
  [_sic_]
  10 quarters of oats
  prec. cap. 4d. 4s.
  12 great fish called great Trouts.

and for the aforesaid virgate of land ... 13s. at the usual terms, with
all other clauses and agreements, as is set forth at length in the
indenture placed in the register. And be it known that the grain,
capons, and pigeons and fish are valued at the rate written above the
head of each kind. And there belong to the farm of arable land 55 acres
in Middlefield, 60 acres in Westfield, and 60 acres in Eastfield, and
one meadow called Long Ham lying in a close and containing 11-1/2 acres,
and the cropping of one meadow called Duttenham lying in the west part
of Wishford containing 10-1/2 acres, one meadow called Beymeade
containing 4-1/2 acres lying on the north-west side of South Newton,
and one curtilage near the barn containing 2 acres, and a hill called
the Down estimated to contain 100 acres, and it is able to keep 500
sheep, 36 cattle, and 12 horses. And there belong to the aforesaid
virgate of land, called the Parson's Yardland, of arable land in
Southfield 6-1/2 acres, in Middlefield 8-1/2 acres, in Northfield 6
acres, and one ham of meadow, pasture for 10 cows, 1 bull, and 120 sheep
with the farmer, 14s.

  4l.
  Wheat 10 qrs.
  106s. 8d.
  Barley 20 qrs.
  26s. 8d.
  Oats 10 qrs.
  6s. 8d.
  Capons 20.
  6s. 8d.
  Pigeons 20.
  4s.
  Fish 12.


7. THE AGRARIAN PROGRAMME OF THE PILGRIMAGE OF GRACE [_Gairdner, Letters
and Papers, Hen. VIII, Vol_. xi, 1246], 1536.

9. That the lands in Westmoreland, Cumberland, Dent, Sedbergh, Furness,
and the abbey lands in Mashamshire, Kyrkbyshire, Notherdale, may be by
tenant right, and the Lords to have, at every change, 2 years rent for
gressum, according to the grant now made by the Lords to the Commons
there. This is to be done by Act of Parliament.

13. The statute for enclosures and intacks to be put in execution, and
all enclosures and intacks since 4 Hen. VII to be pulled down, except
mountains, forests, and parks.


8. THE DEMANDS OF THE REBELS LED BY KET [_Harl. MSS. 304, f. 75. Printed
by Russell, Ket's Rebellion in Norfolk, p. 48_], 1549.

We pray your grace that where it is enacted for enclosing that it be not
hurtful to such as have enclosed saffron grounds, for they be greatly
chargeable to them, and that from henceforth no man shall enclose any
more.[258]

We certify your grace that whereas the lords of the manors hath been
charged with certe free rent, the same lords hath sought means to charge
the freeholders to pay the same rent, contrary to right.

We pray your grace that no lord of no manor shall common upon the
commons.

We pray that priests from henceforth shall purchase no lands neither
free nor Bondy, and the lands that they have in possession may be letten
to temporal men, as they were in the first year of the reign of King
Henry the VII.

We pray that reed ground and meadow ground may be at such price as they
were in the first year of King Henry the VII.

We pray that all marshes that are holden of the King's Majesty by free
rent or of any other, may be again at the price that they were in the
first year of King Henry VII.

We pray that all bushels within your realm be of one stice, that is to
say, to be in measure viii gallons.

We pray that [priests] or vicars that be [not able] to preach and set
forth the word of God to his parishioners may be thereby put from his
benefice, and the parishioners there to choose another, or else the
patron or lord of the town.

We pray that the payments of castleward rent, and blanch farm and office
lands, which hath been accustomed to be gathered of the tenements,
whereas we suppose the lords ought to pay the same to their bailiffs for
their rents gathering, and not the tenants.

We pray that no man under the degree of a knight or esquire keep a dove
house, except it hath been of an old ancient custom.

We pray that all freeholders and copyholders may take the profits of all
commons, and there to common, and the lords not to common nor take
profits of the same.

We pray that no feodary within your shires shall be a councillor to any
man in his office making, whereby the King may be truly served, so that
a man being of good conscience may be yearly chosen to the same office
by the commons of the same shire.

We pray your grace to take all liberty of let into your own hands
whereby all men may quietly enjoy their commons with all profits.

We pray that copyhold land that is unreasonably rented may go as it did
in the first year of King Henry VII, and that at the death of a tenant
or at a sale the same lands to be charged with an easy fine as a capon
or a reasonable [sum] of money for a remembrance.

We pray that no priest [shall be chaplain] nor no other officer to any
man of honour or worship, but only to be resident upon their benefices
whereby their parishioners may be instructed with the laws of God.

We pray that all bond men may be made free, for God made all free with
his precious blood-shedding.

We pray that rivers may be free and common to all men for fishing and
passage.

We pray that no man shall be put by your escheator and feodary to find
any office unless he holdeth of your Grace in chief or capite above
xl._l_ by year.

We pray that the poor mariners or fishermen may have the whole profits
of their fishings as porpoises, grampuses, whales or any great fish, so
it be not prejudicial to your Grace.

We pray that every proprietary parson or vicar having a benefice of
xv._l_ or more by year shall either by themselves or by some other
person teach poor men's children of their parish the book called the
catechism and the primer.

We pray that it be not lawful to the lords of any manor to purchase
lands freely and to let them out again by copy of court roll to their
great advancement and to the undoing of your poor subjects.

We pray that no proprietary parson or vicar, in consideration of
avoiding trouble and suit between them and their poor parishioners which
they daily do precede and attempt, shall from henceforth take for the
full contentation [_i.e._ satisfaction] of all the tenths which now they
do receive but viiid of the noble in the full discharge of all other
tithes.

We pray that no man under the degree of [_blank_] shall keep any conies
upon any of their own freehold or copyhold unless he pale them in so
that it shall not be to the commons' nuisance.

We pray that no person, of what estate, degree or condition he be, shall
from henceforth sell the wardship of any child, but that the same child
if he live to his full age shall be at his own chosen concerning his
marriage, the King's wards only except.

We pray that no manner of person having a manor of his own shall be no
other lord's bailiff but only his own.

We pray that no lord knight nor gentleman shall have or take in farm any
spiritual promotion.

We pray that your Grace to give license and authority by your gracious
commission under your great seal to such commissioners as your poor
commons hath chosen, or as many of them as your Majesty and your council
shall appoint and think meet, for to redress and reform all such good
laws, statutes, proclamations, and all other your proceedings, which
hath been hidden by your justices of your peace, sheriffs, escheators,
and other your officers from your poor commons, since the first year of
the reign of your noble grandfather King Henry VII.

We pray that those your officers that hath offended your Grace and your
commons, and so proved by the complaint of your poor commons, do give
unto these poor men so assembled iiijd. every day so long as they have
remained there.

We pray that no lord, knight, esquire nor gentleman do graze nor feed
any bullocks or sheep if he may spend forty pounds a year by his lands,
but only for the provision of his house.

  By me, Robt. Kett.
  " "   Thomas Aldryche.

  Thomas Cod.

[Footnote 258: Some doubt has been expressed as to the interpretation of
these words. They should probably be read as referring to enclosures
made not by lords or by large farmers, but by the peasants themselves.
The rebels point out that a considerable number of people have spent
capital on hedging and ditching their lands for the better cultivation
of saffron, and therefore ask that, while other enclosures should be
pulled down, a special exception may be made in favour of this
particular kind of enclosure.]


9. PETITION TO COURT OF REQUESTS FROM TENANTS RUINED BY TRANSFERENCE OF
A MONASTIC ESTATE TO LAY HANDS[259] [_R.O. Requests Proceedings, Bundle
23, No. 13_], 1553.

Inhabitants of Whitby _v._ York.

   To [the] Queen's Highness our most dread Sovereign Lady and to her
   most honorable Council.

1553. Lamentably complaining sheweth unto your Highness and to ...
Council your poor obedient subjects and daily orators, poor husbandmen
the ... of Halkesgarthe and Senseker in Whitby Strand in the County of
York, that the said inhabitants, late being tenants of the dissolved
Monastery of Whitby [afore]said, after it was come into the hands of our
late sovereign lord King Henry ... and after that it did come to the
hands and possession of the late Duke of Northumb[erland] and of late
purchased of him by one Sir John Yorke, knight, who is now in possession
of the premises; which said Sir John Yorke hath lately been there and
kept court on the said premises at two sundry times; which said Sir John
Yorke of his extort power and might, and by great and sore threatenings
of the said tenants and inhabitants there, and by other means, hath
gotten from them all the leases [that were in their] custodies and
possession, and unreasonably hath raised and ... rents and excessively
hath gressomed, fined, pilled and ... maketh inquiry all about for your
poor orators with great ... do suppose if he could find them, he would
lay the ... because they should not be able to exhibit this their bill
of c[omplaint] ... and your said Council, how he hath fined them and
raised ... and yearly rents, if your said orators should still bear and
pay, appear by a bill hereunto annexed your orators hands or marks
thereto ... of the old [rents] the [ne]w by them ... to be paid unto the
said Sir John Yorke ... thereby shall be utterly undone in this world
... favour, help and succour with speedy [remedy] ... consideration of
the premises and forasmuch as your said orators and ancestors of your
said poor orators have holden and enjoyed the premises according to the
old ancient custom, old rents and old fines, as hereunder it may plainly
appear, without enhancing, or raising, without vexation or trouble, and
in consideration also that the said Sir John Yorke is a man of power and
might, lands, goods, and possessions ... greatly friended, and your poor
orators being sore afraid to be imprisoned by him, and also very poor
men, and not able to sue against him, nor hath no remedy but only to sue
... Majesty of your most gracious goodness ... said Council, to call
before your Majesty and your said C[ouncil] ... and to take order in the
premises, that your poor orators according to justice, right, and good
conscience may peaceably enjoy all the premises, paying their old
accustomed rents and fines, according as they and their ancestors have
done, time out of mind of man. And your said poor orators shall daily
pray to God for the prosperous preservation of your Majesty in your most
Royal Estate long to reign, and for your most honourable Council long to
continue.

Endorsed....

21 October

The tenants and inhabitants of Senseker and Halkesgarthe in Whitby
Strand in the County of York desire to have Sir John Yorke called before
the Council and to take order that your orators may have....

_The Names of the tenants of Halkesgarthe and Senseker._

                              The old           The new         And the
                               rent.             rent.           fine.
  First John Coward          24s.             3l.     16d.      33s. 4d.
  From Henry Russell         42s. 11-1/2d.    4l. 7s.  3d.   3l. 6s. 8d.
  From Elisabeth Postgate,
    widow                    18s. 10d.           41s.  5d.      18s.
  From Thomas Robynson       12s. 11-1/2d.       40s.  7d.      33s. 4d.
  From John Robynson         10s.  2d.           33s.  4d.      33s. 4d.
  From James Browne          16s.  1d.           36s. 10d.      24s. 6d.
  From Robert Lyne           16s.  4d.           33s. 10d.      13s. 4d.
  From John Nattris           7s.  8d.           15s.           10s.
  From Robert Stor           23s.  5d.           50s.  2d.      15s
  From Thomas Coward         14s.  9d.           31s.            2s. 6d.
  From Thomas Hodshon        20s.  5d.           50s.  8d.      24s.
  From William Walker         7s.  3d.           17s.            5s.
  From Henry Tomson          11s.  3-1/2d.
  From Henry Coverdaill      15s.                36s.           11s. 8d.
  From Nicholas Grame        22s.  6d.           46s.  8d.       3s.
  From William Postgate      28s.  7d.        3l. 6s.  8d.      23s. 6d.
  From William Brown         13s.  4d.            26s. 8d.      24s.10d.
  From Robert Jefrayson      14s.                 30s.           3s. 4d.
  From William Bois and
    Robert Jefrayson         34s.  8d.        3l.  6s. 8d.      13s. 4d.
  From Robert Barker         14s.  6d.            30s.           2s. 8d.
  From Christofer Jefrayson  10s.  8d.            26s. 8d.       3s. 4d.
  From Richard Colson and
    Isabell Colson, widow    31s.             3l.  2s.
  From Robert Sutton and
    Kateryn Sutton, widow    23s.  4d.            53s. 4d.      36s. 8d.
  From Thomas Postgate,
    younger, and Henry
    Russell                  27s.  6d.        3l.  6s. 8d.      37s.
  From Thomas Postgate the
    elder, Suthwait house    18s.  3d.           46s.  8d.      23s. 4d.
  From Robert Huntrodes      50s.  2d.       5l. 16s.  8d.       7s.

At Lammas last past my Lady Yorke at Whitby earnestly demanded of the
said Robert Michaelmas farm before hand, insomuch he durst not hold it
but paid it to her, the sum

  of                         58s.  4d.

   From William Jakson, likewise paid 20s. for his farm afore hand.

  From Maryon Huntrodes,
    widow                    50s.  2d.       5l. 16s.  8d.       7s.
                               Sum:--            Sum:--          Sum:--
                        28l. 19s.  8-1/2d.  64l.  9s.  9d. 23l. 15s. 8d.

  [Endorsed.] Bill versus Yorke.
    Orders and Decrees.
        24th day of October in the first year of the reign of
            Queen Mary.

Be it remembered that the cause brought afore the Queen's Council in Her
Majesty's Court of Requests at the suit as well of Robert Stor as
William Poskett and William Browne, tenants to Sir John Yorke, knight,
in the Lordship of Whitby in the County of York, is now ordered by the
said Council by the agreement of the said Sir John, who hath promised
that the said parties afore named, and every of them, shall have and
quietly enjoy their tenements and holds during the years and terms in
their leases and copies yet enduring, paying their rents and farms
accustomed without any interruption to the contrary or any other by him
or in his name or procurement.

[Footnote 259: This document, though very imperfect, is interesting as
illustrating (_a_) the land speculation which followed the dissolution
of the monasteries, (_b_) the rack-renting of tenants which such
speculation naturally produced.]


10. PETITION TO COURT OF REQUESTS TO STAY PROCEEDINGS AGAINST TENANTS
PENDING THE HEARING OF THEIR CASE BEFORE THE COUNCIL OF THE NORTH [_R.O.
Requests Proceedings. Bundle III, No. 24_], 1576.

_To the Queen's most excellent Majesty._

In most humble wise sheweth unto your Majesty your poor subject Thomas
Langhorne, and other the inhabitants and residents of the lordship of
Thornthwaite in your county of Westmoreland, that whereas your suppliant
and other of the inhabitants and residents of the lordship aforesaid,
and their ancestors time out of memory of man, have quietly had and
enjoyed from heir to heir according to their ancient custom in
consideration of their service to be in readiness with horse,[260]
harness and other furniture to serve your Majesty at their own costs and
charges in defence of your realm against the Scots, which custom hath
been sufficiently approved and allowed before your Majesty's President
and Council at York, as by a decree ready to be shewed more at large it
may appear. But so it is, and if it please your Majesty, that Sir Henry
Curwyn, knight, lord of the lordship aforesaid, hath since the beginning
of your Majesty's reign expelled out of one piece of Shapps parish
within the said lordship, where there was but thirteen tenants, twelve
of them he hath expelled and taken their land from them and enclosed it
into his demesnes, whereby your Majesty's service for the same is
utterly taken away: and also the said Sir Henry Curwyn, lord of the
lordship aforesaid, hath of late surrendered over the same lordship to
Nicholas Curwyn, gentleman, his son and heir, which Sir Henry and
Nicholas do excessively fine the poor tenants and specially your orator,
who was forced to pay them for the fine of his tenement, being but 13s.
10d. by year, 31l. 6s. 8d., and was admitted tenant to the said Nicholas
Curwyn, who notwithstanding hath contrary to all right and conscience
granted a lease of your subject's tenement to one Henry Curwyn, servant
to the same Nicholas, in the nature of an _ejection firm_[261] here at
the common law, and hath by your Majesty's writ arrested your orator to
appear in your Highness' Bench at Westminster to the utter undoing of
your said poor subject, his wife and five children for ever, being not
able to defend his rightful cause: May it therefore please your most
excellent Majesty that order may be set down by your Majesty and your
most honourable council that none of the lordship aforesaid may be
expelled out and from their tenant rights until their said custom shall
be tried and examined before the Lord President of York for the time
being, and that your Majesty's said subject may not be constrained to
answer any suit here at the Common Law concerning their tenant right.
And your said orators shall according to their bounden duties pray to
God for the preservation of your most Royal Majesty long to live and
reign over us.

[Endorsed.] 18 May, 1586.

Your humble subject Thomas Langhorne, one of the tenants of the lordship
of Thornthwaite in the county of Westmoreland, being molested in their
tenant right by one Henry Curwyn, servant unto Nicholas Curwyn, lord of
the said manor, desire most humbly that all actions at the Common Laws
here at Westminster might be stayed and the full hearing of the matter
reserved to the Lord President at York.

      25 May, 18 Elizabeth.
  Writ of injunction granted, as appears, etc.

[Footnote 260: For this form of customary tenure, "border tenure," see
_Northumberland County History_, _passim_.]

[Footnote 261: _i.e._ an _ejectio firmae_, an action of ejectment. See
Pollock and Maitland, _History of English Law_. Vol. II. p. 109.]


11. PETITION FROM FREEHOLDERS OF WOOTTON BASSETT FOR RESTORATION OF
RIGHTS OF COMMON [_Topographer and Genealogist, Vol. III_], _temp._
Charles I.

To the Right Honourable House of Parliament now assembled, the humble
petition of the Mayor and Free Tenants of the Borough of Wootton Basset
in the County of Wilts.

Humbly showeth to this Honourable House, That whereas the Mayor and Free
Tenants of the said Borough, by relation of our ancient predecessors,
had and did hold unto them free common of pasture for the feeding of all
sorts of other beasts, as cows, etc., without stint, be they never so
many, in and through Eastern Great Park, which said park contained by
estimation 2000 acres of ground or upwards; and in the second and third
year of the reign of King Philip and Queen Mary the manor of Wootton
Basset aforesaid came by patent into the hands and possession of one Sir
Francis Englefield, knight, who, in short time after he was thereof
possessed, did enclose the said park; and in consideration of the common
of pasture that the free tenants of the borough had in the said park did
grant, condescend and lease out unto the said free tenants of the said
borough to use as common amongst them that parcel of the said Great Park
which formerly was and now is called by the name of Wootton Lawnd, which
was but a small portion to that privilege which they had before it,
[and] doth not contain by estimation above 100 acres; but the free
tenants being therewith contented, the mayor and free tenants did
equally stint the said ground or common, as followeth:--that is to say
to the mayor of the town for the time being two cows feeding, and to the
constable one cow feeding, and to every inhabitant of the said borough,
each and every of them, one cow feeding and no more, as well the poor as
the rich, and every one to make and maintain a certain parcel or bound
set forth to every person; and ever after that inclosure for the space
of fifty and six years or thereabouts any messuage, burgage or tenement
that was bought or sold within the said borough did always buy and sell
the said cows-leaze together with the said messuage or burgage as part
member of the same, as doth and may appear by divers deeds which are yet
to be seen; and about which time, as we are informed and do verily
believe, that Sir Francis Englefield, heir of the aforesaid Sir Francis
Englefield, did by some means gain the charter of our town into his
hands, and as lately we have heard his successor now keepeth it; and we
do believe that at the same time he did likewise gain the deed of the
said common, and he thereby knowing that the town had nothing to show
for their rights of common but by prescription, did begin suits in law
with the said free tenants for their common, and did vex them with so
many suits in law for the space of seven or eight years at the least,
and never suffer anyone to come to trial in all that space, but did
divers times attempt to gain his possession thereof by putting in of
divers sorts of cattle, in so much that at length, when his servants did
put in cows by force into the said common, many times and present upon
the putting of them in, the Lord in his mercy did send thunder and
lightning from heaven, which did make the cattle of the said Francis
Englefield to run so violent out of the said ground that at one time one
of the beasts was killed therewith; and it was so often that people that
were not there in presence to see it, when it thundered, would say Sir
Francis Englefield's men were putting in their cattle into the Lawnd,
and so it was, and as soon as those cattle were gone forth it would
presently be very calm and fair, and the cattle of the town would never
stir but follow their feeding as at other times, and never offer to move
out of the way but did follow their feeding. And this did continue so
long, he being too powerful for them, that the said free tenants were
not able to wage law any longer; for one John Rous, one of the free
tenants, was thereby enforced to sell all his land (to the value of
£500) with following the suits in law, and many others were thereby
impoverished and were thereby forced to yield up their right and take a
lease of their said common of the said Sir Francis Englefield for term
of his life. And the said mayor and free tenants hath now lost their
right of common in the said Lawnd near about twenty years, which this
Sir Francis Englefield, his heirs and his trustees, now detaineth from
them. Likewise the said Sir Francis Englefield hath taken away their
shops or shambles standing in the middle of the street in the
market-place from the town, and hath given them to a stranger that
liveth not in the town.... And he hath altered and doth seek ways and
means to take the election of the mayor of our town to himself; for
whereas the mayor is chosen at the law-day and the jury did ever make
choice of two men of the town and the lord of the manor was to appoint
one of them to serve, which the lord of the manor refused, and caused
one to stay in two years together divers times, which is a breach of our
custom.

And as for our common we do verily believe that no corporation in
England so much is wronged as we are. For we are put out of all the
common that ever we had and have not so much as one foot of common left
unto us, nor never shall have any. We are thereby grown so in poverty,
unless it please God to move the hearts of this Honourable House to
commiserate our cause, and to enact something for us, that we may enjoy
our right again. And your orators shall be ever bound to pray for your
health and prosperity to the Lord.

[here follow 23 signatures.]

Divers hands more we might have had, but that many of them doth rent
bargains of the lord of the manor, and they are fearful that they shall
be put forth of their bargains; and then they shall not tell how to
live. Otherwise they would have set to their hands.


12. PETITION TO CROWN OF COPYHOLDERS OF NORTH WHEATLEY [_S.P.D. Charles
I, Vol. 151, No. 38_], 1629.

To the King's most Excellent Majesty.

The humble petition of your Majesty's poor and distressed tenants of
your manor of North Wheatley in the county of Nottingham belonging to
your Majesty's Duchy of Lancaster.

Most humbly shewing: That your poor subjects have time out of mind been
copyholders of lands of inheritance to them and their heirs for ever of
the manor aforesaid, and paid for every oxgang of land xvis. viiid.
rent, and paid heretofore upon every alienation xiid. for every oxgang,
but now of late, about 4_o_ Jacobi by an order of the Duchy Court they
pay xis. vid. upon every alienation for every acre, which amounteth now
to 45s. an oxgang.

And whereas some of your tenants of the said manor have heretofore held
and do now hold certain oxgangs of lands belonging to the said manor by
copy from 21 years to 21 years, and have paid for the same upon every
copy 2s., and for every oxgang 16s. 8d. per annum, they now of late, by
an order in the Duchy Court, hold the same by lease under the Duchy
Seal, and pay 6l. 13s. 4d. for a fine upon every lease and 16s. 8d. rent
with an increase of 6s. 8d. more towards your Majesty's provision.

And whereas in 11_o_ Edw. 4_i_, your petitioners did by copy of
court roll hold the demesnes of the said manor for term of years at 9l.
6s. 8d. per annum, they afterwards in 6_o_ Eliz. held the same demesnes
by lease under the seal of the Duchy for 21 years, at the like rent. And
ten years before their lease was expired, they employed one Mr. Markham
in trust to get their lease renewed, who procured a new lease of the
demesnes in his own name for 21 years at the old rent, and afterwards,
contrary to the trust committed to him, increased and raised the rent
thereof upon the tenants to his own private benefit to 56l. per annum.

And whereas the woods belonging to the said manor hath within the memory
of man been the only common belonging to the said town, paying yearly
for the herbage and pannage thereof 6s. 8d., they now also hold the same
under the Duchy Seal at 16l. 16s. 2d. per annum.

And whereas the court rolls and records of the said manor have always
heretofore been kept under several locks and keys, whereof your
Majesty's stewards have kept one key and your Majesty's tenants (in
regard it concerned their particular inheritances) have kept another
key; but now they are at the pleasure of the stewards and officers
transported from place to place, and the now purchasers do demand the
custody of them, which may be most prejudicial to your Majesty's poor
tenants.

Now forasmuch as your Majesty hath been pleased to sell the said manor
unto the City of London, who have sold the same unto Mr. John Cartwright
and Mr. Tho. Brudnell, gent.: and for that your petitioners and tenants
there (being in number two hundred poor men, and there being 11 of your
Majesty's tenants there, that bear arms for the defence of your
Majesty's realm, and 12 that pay your Majesty subsidies, fifteens, and
loans) are all now like to be utterly undone, in case the said Mr.
Cartwright and Mr. Brudnell should (as they say they will) take away
from your tenants the said demesnes and woods after the expiration of
their leases, and that your poor tenants should be left to the wills of
the purchasers for their fines, or that the records and court rolls
should not be kept as in former times in some private place, where the
purchasers and tenants may both have the custody and view of them as
occasion shall serve;

May it therefore please your sacred Majesty that such order may be taken
in the premises for the relief of your poor tenants of the manor
aforesaid, that they may not be dispossessed of the demesnes and leases,
and that they may know the certainty of their fines for the copyhold,
demesnes and leases, and may have the court rolls and records safely
kept as formerly they have been, and that your Majesty will be further
pleased to refer the consideration, hearing, ordering and determination
of the premises unto such noblemen, or other four gentlemen of esteem in
the country, whom your Majesty shall be pleased to appoint, that are
neighbours unto your tenants, and do best know their estate and
grievances. That they or any two or three of them may take such order,
and so settle the business between the purchasers and your poor tenants,
as they in their wisdom and discretion shall judge to be reasonable and
fitting, or to certify your Majesty how they find the same and in whose
default it is they cannot determine thereof. And your poor tenants as in
all humble duty bound will daily pray for your Majesty.

Whitehall, this 10th of November, 1629.

His Majesty is graciously pleased to refer the consideration of this
request to the commissioners for sale of his lands, that upon the report
unto his Majesty of their opinion and advice his Majesty may give
further order therein.

DORCHESTER.


13. AN ACT AVOIDING PULLING DOWN OF TOWNS [_7 Hen. VIII, c. 1. Statutes
of the Realm, Vol. III, pp. 176-7_], 1515.

The King our Sovereign Lord calling to his most blessed remembrance that
where great inconveniences be and daily increase by dislocation, pulling
down, and destruction of houses and towns within this realm, and laying
to pasture lands which customably have been manured and occupied with
tillage and husbandry, whereby idleness doth increase, for where in some
one town 200 persons, men and women and children, and their ancestors
out of time of mind, were daily occupied and lived by sowing corn and
grains, breeding of cattle, and other increase necessary for man's
sustenance, and now the said persons and their progenies be minished and
decreased, whereby the husbandry which is the greatest commodity of this
realm for sustenance of man is greatly decayed, Churches destroyed, the
service of God withdrawn, Christian people there buried not prayed for,
the patrons and curates wronged, cities, market towns brought to great
ruin and decay, necessaries for man's sustenance made scarce and dear,
the people sore minished in the realm, whereby the power and defence
thereof is enfeebled and impaired, to the high displeasure of God and
against his laws and to the subversion of the common weal of this realm
and dislocation of the same, if substantial and speedy remedy be not
thereof provided; wherefore the King our Sovereign Lord, by the advice
and assent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and the Commons, in this
present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same,
ordaineth, stablisheth and enacteth, that all such towns, villages,
boroughs and hamlets, tything houses and other habitations in any parish
or parishes within this realm, whereof the more part the first day of
this present parliament was or were used and occupied to tillage and
husbandry, [as] by the owner or owners thereof for their singular
profit, avail, and lucre wilfully since the said first day be or
hereafter shall be suffered or caused to fall down and decay, whereby
the husbandry of the said towns, villages, boroughs, hamlets, tithings
houses and other habitations and parishes within this realm been or
hereafter shall be decayed, and turned from the said use and occupation
of husbandry and tillage into pasture, shall be by the said owner or
owners, their heirs, successors or assigns or other for them, within one
year next after such wilful decay, re-edified and made again meet and
convenient for people to dwell and inhabit in the same, and to have use
and therein to exercise husbandry and tillage as at the said first day
of this present parliament or since was there used, occupied and had,
after the manner and usage of the country where the said land lieth, at
the cost and charges of the same owner or owners, their heirs,
successors or assigns. And if since the said first day of this present
parliament any lands which at the same first day or since were commonly
used in tillage, been enclosed or from henceforth shall be enclosed and
turned only to pasture, whereby any house of husbandry within this realm
is or shall be hereafter decayed, that then all such lands shall be by
the same owner or owners, their heirs, successors or assigns or other
for them, within one year next ensuing the same decay, put in tillage,
and exercised, used and occupied in husbandry and tillage, as they were
the first said day of this present parliament or any time since, after
the manner and usage of the country where such land lieth; and if any
person or persons do contrary to the premises or any of them, that then
it be lawful to the King, if any such lands or houses be holden of him
immediately, after office or inquisition found thereof comprehending the
same matter of record, or to the lords of the fees, if any such lands or
houses [have] been holden of immediately, without office or inquisition
thereof had, to receive yearly half the value of the issues and profits
of any such lands whereof the house or houses of husbandry be not so
maintained and sustained, and the same half deal of the issues and
profits to have, hold and keep to his or their own use without anything
thereof to be paid or given, to such time as the same house or houses be
sufficiently re-edified, built or repaired again, for the exercising and
occupying of husbandry; and immediately after that, as well the interest
and title given by this Act to our Sovereign Lord the King as to the
lords of the fee to cease and no longer to endure; and that it shall be
lawful to the owner and owners of such lands, house or houses holden
immediately of our said Sovereign Lord the King to have and enjoy the
same and to take the issues and profits thereof as if no such office or
inquisition had never been had nor made; and that no manner of freehold
be in the King nor in any such lord or lords by virtue of this act or
taking of any such profits of or in any such lands in no manner of form,
but only the King and the said lord or lords have power to take, receive
and have the said issues and profits as is abovesaid, and therefore the
King or the said lord or lords to have power to distrain for the same
issues and profits to be had and perceived by them in form abovesaid by
authority of this present act....


14. THE COMMISSION[262] OF INQUIRY TOUCHING ENCLOSURES [_Patent Roll 9
Hen. VIII, p. 2, m. 6d._], 1517.

The King to his beloved and faithful John Veysy, dean of our Chapel,
Andrew Wyndesore, knight, and Roger Wegeston, late of Leicester,
greeting. Whereas of late in times past divers our lieges, not having
before their eyes either God or the benefit and advantage of our realm
or the defence of the same, have enclosed with hedges and dykes and
other enclosures certain towns, hamlets and other places within this our
realm of England, where many of our subjects dwelt and there yearly and
assiduously occupied and exercised tillage and husbandry, and have
expelled and ejected the same our subjects dwelling therein from their
holdings and farms, and have reduced the country round the houses, towns
and hamlets aforesaid, and the fields and lands within the same, to
pasture and for flocks of sheep and other animals to graze there for the
sake of their private gain and profit, and have imparked certain great
fields and pasture and woods of the same in large and broad parks, and
certain others in augmentation of parks for deer only to graze there,
whereby the same towns, hamlets and places are not only brought to
desolation, but also the houses and buildings of the same are brought to
so great ruin, that no vestige of the same at the present is left, and
our subjects, who have dwelt in the said places and there occupied and
exercised tillage and husbandry, are now brought to idleness, which is
the step-mother of virtues, and daily live in idleness, and the crops
and breeding of cattle that were bred and nourished by the same tillers
and husbandmen dwelling in the same towns, hamlets and places for human
sustenance, are withdrawn and entirely voided from the same places, and
the churches and chapels there hallowed are destroyed and divine
services there taken away, and the memory of souls of Christians buried
there utterly and wholly perished, and many other inestimable damages
grow therefrom and daily hereafter will grow, to the greatest desolation
and undoing of our realm and diminution of our subjects, unless an
opportune remedy for the reformation of the same be swiftly and speedily
applied: We, as we are duly bound, desiring to reform the aforesaid and
wishing to be certified touching the same, what and how many towns and
hamlets and how many houses and buildings have been thrown down from the
feast of St. Michael the Archangel in the fourth year of the reign of
the most illustrious lord Henry, late King of England, the Seventh, our
father, and how many and how great lands which were then in tillage are
now enclosed and converted to pasture, and how many and how great parks
have been imparked for the feeding of deer since the same feast, and
what lands have been enclosed in any parks or any park, which then were
or was, for the amplifying and enlarging of such parks, have therefore
appointed you and two of you to enquire by oath of good and lawful men
of the counties of Oxford, Berks, Warwick, Leicester, Bedford,
Buckingham, and Northampton, as well within liberties as without, and by
other ways, manners and means whereby you shall or may the better learn
the truth, what and how many towns, how many houses and buildings have
been thrown down from the aforesaid feast, and how many and how great
lands which were then in tillage are now converted to pasture, and how
many and how great parks have been enclosed for the feeding of deer on
this side the same feast, and what lands have been enclosed in any parks
or any park, which then were or was, for the enlargement of such parks,
and by whom, where, when, how and in what manner, and touching other
articles and circumstances in any wise concerning the premises,
according to the tenour and effect of certain articles specified in a
bill to these presents annexed. And therefore we command you that you
attend diligently to the premises and do and execute the same with
effect. And by the tenour of these presents we command our sheriffs of
the counties aforesaid that at certain days and places, which you shall
cause them to know, they cause to come before you or two of you as many
and such good and lawful men of their bailiwick by whom the truth of the
matter may the better be known and enquired of; and that you certify us
in our Chancery of what you shall do in the premises in three weeks from
the day of St. Michael next coming, together with this commission. In
witness whereof, etc. Witness the King at Westminster, the 28th day of
May.

[Footnote 262: Similar letters are addressed to other Commissioners
directing them to make similar inquiries in other parts of the country.
The Commission was appointed by Wolsey. Its returns are important as a
source of information both on the said conditions of the period and on
the administrative methods of the Tudor statesmen (see Leadam, _Domesday
of Enclosures_) and subsequent Commissions were appointed in 1548, 1566,
1607, 1632, 1635, and 1636, the last three being prompted partly by the
desire to raise money by means of fines.]


15. AN ACT CONCERNING FARMS AND SHEEP [_25 Hen. VIII, c. 13. Statutes of
the Realm, Vol. III, p. 451_], 1533-4.

Forasmuch as divers and sundry [persons] of the king's subjects of this
realm, to whom God of his goodness hath disposed great plenty and
abundance of moveable substance, now of late within few years have daily
studied, practised and invented ways and means how they might accumulate
and gather together into few hands as well great multitude of farms as
great plenty of cattle and in especial sheep, putting such lands as they
can get to pasture and not to tillage, whereby they have not only pulled
down churches and towns and enhanced the old rates of their rents of the
possessions of this realm, or else brought it to such excessive fines
that no poor man is able to meddle with it, but also have raised and
enhanced the prices of all manner of corn, cattle, wool, pigs, geese,
hens, chickens, eggs and such other almost double above the prices which
hath been accustomed, by reason whereof a marvellous multitude and
number of people of this realm be not able to provide meat, drink and
clothes necessary for themselves, their wives and children, but be so
discouraged with misery and poverty that they fall daily to theft,
robbery and other inconvenience, or pitifully die for hunger and cold;
and as it is thought by the King's most humble and loving subjects that
one of the greatest occasions that moveth and provoketh those greedy and
covetous people so to accumulate and keep in their hands such great
portions and parties of the grounds and lands of this realm from the
occupying of the poor husbandmen, and so to use it in pasture and not in
tillage, is only the great profit that cometh of sheep, which now be
coming to a few persons' hands of this realm in respect of the whole
number of the King's subjects, that some have 24 thousand, some 20
thousand, and some more and some less, by which a good sheep for victual
that was accustomed to be sold for 2s. 4d. or 3s. at the most, is now
sold for 6s. 5s. or 4s. at the least; and a stone of clothing wool that
in some shires of this realm was accustomed to be sold for 18d. or 20d.
is now sold for 4s. or 3s. 4d. at the least, and in some countries where
it hath been sold for 2s. 4d. or 2s., or 3s. at the most, it is now sold
for 5s. or 4s. 8d. at the least, and so raised in every part of this
realm; which things thus used be principally to the high displeasure of
Almighty God, to the decay of the hospitality of this realm, to the
diminishing of the King's people, and to the hindrance of the
clothmaking, whereby many poor people hath been accustomed to be set on
work, and in conclusion if remedy be not found it may turn to the utter
destruction and dislocation of this realm, which God defend; it may
therefore please the King's Highness of his most gracious and godly
disposition, and the Lords Spiritual and Temporal of their goodness and
charity, with the assent of the Commons in this present parliament
assembled, to ordain and enact by authority of the same, that no person
or persons from the feast of St. Michael the Archangel which shall be in
the year of Our Lord God 1535 shall keep occupy or have in his
possession in his own proper lands, nor in the possession, lands or
grounds of any other which he shall have or occupy in farm, nor
otherwise have of his own proper cattle in use, possession or property,
by any manner of means, fraud, craft or covyn, above the number of 2,000
sheep at one time within any part of this realm of all sorts and kinds,
upon pain to lose and forfeit for every sheep that any person or persons
shall have or keep above the number limited by this act, 3s. 4d., the
one half to the King our Sovereign Lord, and the other half to such
person as will sue for the same.... It is also further enacted by
authority aforesaid that no manner person after the said feast of the
nativity of Our Lord shall receive or take for term of life, years or at
will, by indenture, copy of court roll or otherwise, any more houses,
tenements of husbandry, whereunto any lands are belonging in town,
village, hamlet or tithing within this realm above the number of two
such holds or tenements; and that no manner person shall have or occupy
any such holds so newly taken to the number of two as is before
expressed, except he or they be dwelling within the same parishes where
such holds be, upon the pain of forfeiture for every week that he or
they shall have, occupy, or take any profits of such holds contrary to
this act 3s. 4d., the moiety of which forfeiture to be to the King our
Sovereign Lord and the other moiety to the party that will sue for the
same.....


16. INTERVENTION OF PRIVY COUNCIL UNDER SOMERSET TO PROTECT TENANTS[263]
[_Acts of Privy Council, p. 540_], 1549.

28 June, 1549.

An Order taken upon complaint made to the Lord Protector and other of
the King's Majesty's Privy Council for the town of Godmanchester.

First, all and every person within the said town having any more houses
of habitation than one in his possession, or any site of a house
whereupon a house of habitation hath been with [in] [_blank_] years
standing, shall at and before the Feast of St. Michael in the year of
our Lord God 1549 let or demise every the said house with the land
thereto accustomed, besides one, to a convenient person, if any that
shall require, upon the usual rent, and upon every site now having no
house of habitation shall before the said Feast of St. Michael in the
same year build a house for habitation and thereto allot so much as
thereto was heretofore belonging, and the same shall let and demise, if
any that will hire, upon the accustomed rent.

Item, every person having converted any house or habitation unto any
other use shall before Michaelmas next coming revert to the use of
habitation as it was before, and the same shall let to any which that
require upon the accustomed rent, and every person forthwith shall for
every house of habitation, decayed site of habitation, and for every
house of habitation converted to other use during the time of his
possession, maintain and keep the King's watch and other common charges
of the town in like manner as hath been heretofore of them used.

Item, whereas there is a great number of acres, lately belonging to
certain gilds there, it is ordered that the same shall be divided to the
inhabitants thereof in this manner; that is to say, to every ploughland
5 acres, and to every cottage or artificer there dwelling, or which
hereafter upon the houses to be new builded shall dwell, one acre; and
if the number do not extend, then every ploughland 4, and so for lack of
that rate every ploughland 3; and the residue of the said acres falling
after that rate to be divided amongst the cottages, paying for every of
the said acres 3s. 4d. and above.

Item, also whereas there be certain groves of wood destroyed and turned
to pasture in the same town, every such grove being so altered shall be
by the owner thereof again (having been so altered within this 20 years
before Michaelmas next coming) enclosed and preserved for wood, saving
so much of the same to be reserved for a high way for the owner as in
those cases the like is there used, the same high way to be severed by
hedge from the rest of the grove; and where the groves be so destroyed
that there remaineth no hope of growth, the owner thereof shall before
the next season following meet for the same set it with wood or sow it
with acorns or otherwise as the same may best be for growth of wood.

Provided nevertheless if any manner person have converted any house of
habitation or any site of habitation to his necessary use about his own
house, so that the same should be great inconvenience to be reverted to
the first and old use, then in that case the owner shall be discharged
if he for every such habitation so altered do build a like house in some
other convenient like place, and the same to use to all purposes as
before is said of the like.

The bailiffs be commanded to bring their grant by charter to the Lord
Protector at All Hallow tide next coming.

For the observation of which orders the bailiffs and others of that town
be bound in recognisance before the said Protector and Council.

  Henry Frear  }  Have acknowledged and each of them has
  Thomas Trecy }  acknowledged that they owe to the Lord
  John Clark   }  the King by themselves 100l. sterling.

Upon condition to perform the articles above mentioned.

[Footnote 263: For Somersets popular agrarian policy, see Pollard, _The
Protector Somerset_, and, especially, the introduction to the
_Commonwealth of this Realm of England_ (edited by Lamond).]


17. AN ACT FOR THE MAINTENANCE OF HUSBANDRY AND TILLAGE [_39 Eliz. c. 2,
Statutes of the Realm, Vol. IV., Part II. pp. 893-96_], 1597-8.

Whereas the strength and flourishing estate of this kingdom hath been
always and is greatly upheld and advanced by the maintenance of the
plough and tillage, being the occasion of the increase and multiplying
of people both for service in the wars and in times of peace, being also
a principal means that people are set on work, and thereby withdrawn
from idleness, drunkenness, unlawful games and all other lewd practices
and conditions of life; and whereas by the same means of tillage and
husbandry the greater part of the subjects are preserved from extreme
poverty in a competent estate of maintenance and means to live, and the
wealth of the realm is kept dispersed and distributed in many hands,
where it is more ready to answer all necessary charges for the service
of the realm; and whereas also the said husbandry and tillage is a cause
that the realm doth more stand upon itself, without depending upon
foreign countries either for bringing in of corn in time of scarcity, or
for vent and utterance of our own commodities being in over great
abundance; and whereas from the 27th year of King Henry VIII of famous
memory, until the five and thirtieth year of Her Majesty's most happy
reign, there was always in force some law which did ordain a conversion
and continuance of a certain quantity and apportion of land in tillage
not to be altered; and that in the last parliament held in the said five
and thirtieth year of her Majesty's reign, partly by reason of the great
plenty and cheapness of grain at that time within this realm, and partly
by reason of the imperfection and obscurity of the law made in that
case, the same was discontinued; since which time there have grown many
more depopulations, by turning tillage into pasture, than at any time
for the like number of years heretofore: Be it enacted ... that whereas
any lands or grounds at any time since the seventeenth of November in
the first year of Her Majesty's reign have been converted to sheep
pastures or to the fattening or grazing of cattle, the same lands having
been tillable lands, fields or grounds such as have been used in tillage
by the space of twelve years together at the least next before such
conversion, according to the nature of the soil and course of husbandry
used in that part of the country, all such lands and grounds as
aforesaid shall, before the first day of May which shall be in the year
of Our Lord God 1599, be restored to tillage, or laid for tillage in
such sort as the whole ground, according to the nature of that soil and
course of husbandry used in that part of the country, be within three
years at the least turned to tillage by the occupiers and possessors
thereof, and so shall be continued for ever.

And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that all lands and
grounds which now are used in tillage or for tillage, having been
tillable lands, fields or grounds, such as next before the first day of
this present parliament have been by the space of twelve years together
at the least used in tillage or for tillage, according to the nature of
the soil and course of husbandry used in that part of the country, shall
not be converted to any sheep pasture or to the grazing or fattening of
cattle by the occupiers or possessors thereof, but shall, according to
the nature of that soil and course of husbandry used in that part of the
country, continue to be used in tillage or for tillage for corn or
grain, and not for waste.... And be it enacted by the authority
aforesaid, that if any person or body politic or corporate shall offend
against the premises, every such person or body politic or corporate so
offending shall lose and forfeit for every acre not restored or not
continued as aforesaid, the sum of twenty shillings for every year that
he or they so offend; and that the said penalties or forfeitures shall
be divided in three equal parts, whereof one third part to be to the
Queen's Majesty, her heirs and successors to her and their own use (and)
one other third part to the Queen's Majesty, her heirs and successors
for relief of the poor in the parish where the offence shall be
committed ... and the other third part to such person as will sue for
the same in any court of record at Westminster.... Provided also, that
this act shall not extend to any counties within this realm of England,
but such only as shall be hereafter specified; that is to say, the
counties of Northampton, Leicester, Warwick, Buckingham, Bedford,
Oxford, Berkshire, the Isle of Wight, Gloucester, Worcester, Nottingham,
Hampshire, Wiltshire, Somerset, Dorset, Derby, Rutland, Lincoln,
Hereford, Cambridge, Huntingdon, York, Pembroke in South Wales, and the
Bishopric of Durham and Northumberland, and the counties of all the
cities and corporations lying situate and being within the counties
aforesaid, or confining to the same, and the Ainsty of the county of the
city of York.


18. SPEECH IN HOUSE OF COMMONS ON ENCLOSURES [_Hist. MSS. Com. MSS. of
Marquis of Salisbury, Part VII, pp. 541-3_], 1597[264].

But now, as if all these wrongs should be redressed, and all the cries
and curses of the poor should be removed, it hath pleased you, Mr.
Speaker, to exhibit this bill to our view as a complete remedy. I will
not say 'it is worse than the disease.' But this I may truly say, 'It is
too weak for the disease!' Three things I find exactly and providently
respected. First, that the law is general, without exception, drawing in
the purchaser as well as the first offender, whereat, howsoever some may
shake their heads, as pressed with their own grief, yet is there no new
imposition charged upon them, but such as is grounded upon the common
law. For being without contradiction that this turning of the earth to
sloth and idleness, whereby it cannot fructify to the common good, is
the greatest and most dangerous nuisance and damage to the common
people, the law hath provided that the treasure of wickedness shall
profit nothing, but that the nuisance shall be reformed in the hands of
the people that come in upon the best consideration.... And 26 Eliz. in
the Exchequer, in Claypole's case, an exhibition was exhibited upon the
Statute of 4 Hen. VII[265] against a purchaser for converting of tillage
into pasture, and adjudged good, though the purchaser were not the
converter, but only a contriver of the first conversion. So as this new
law tends but for an explanation of the old, that every one by the eye
may be informed what ought by the hand to be amended. Nay, though it be
not fit, Mr. Speaker, to be published among the ruder sort, who, if they
were privy to their own strength and liberty allowed them by the law,
would be as unbridled and untamed beasts, yet is it not unfit to be
delivered in this place of council, that is, that where the wrong and
mischief spreads to an universality, there the people may be their own
justices, as in 6 Ed. II and 8 Ed. III Ass. 154 and 447 it is adjudged
that if a wall be raised atraverse the way that leadeth to the Church
all the parishioners may beat it down, and 9 Ed. IV 445, if the course
of a water that runs to a town be stopped or diverted all the
inhabitants may break it down. Are the people thus interested in the
Church wherein their souls are fed, and shall we not think them to be as
deeply interested in the corn and increase of the earth that feeds and
maintains their bodies? Therefore most wisely hath the gentleman that
penned the law pressed the case upon the purchaser that he plough, lest
the people plot to circumvent him.

The second thing so well provided is ... that it turns one eye backward
to cure the ancient complaints and old festered disease of dearth and
scarcity that hath been so long among us, and turns the other eye
forward to cut out, as it were, the core that might draw on hereafter
mischiefs of the same nature; where the gentleman that framed this bill
hath dealt like a most skilful chirurgien, not clapping on a plaster to
cover the sore that it spread no further, but searching into the very
depths of the wound, that the life and strength which hath so long been
in decay by the wasting of towns and countries may at length again be
quickened and repaired.

The third thing most politicly respected is the intercourse and change
of ground to be converted into tillage, keeping a just proportion. For
it fareth with the earth as with other creatures that through continual
labour grow faint and feeble-hearted, and therefore, if it be so far
driven as to be out of breath, we may now by this law resort to a more
lusty and proud piece of ground while the first gathers strength, which
will be a means that the earth yearly shall be surcharged with burden of
her own excess. And this did the former lawmakers overslip, tyeing the
land once tilled to a perpetual bondage and servitude of being ever
tilled.

But this threefold benefit I find crossed and encountered with a
fourfold mildness and moderation fit to have a keen edge and sharpness
set upon it, wherein I acknowledge my master that drew this project to
have shewed himself like a tender-hearted physician, who coming to a
patient possessed and full of corrupt and evil humours, will not hastily
stir the body, but apply gentle and easy recipes. But surely, Mr.
Speaker, a desperate disease must have a desperate medicine, and some
wounds will not be healed but by incision.

The first moderation I mislike in this new law is that the most cunning
and skilful offender shall altogether slip the collar; for if a man have
decayed a whole town by enclosures, and hath rid his hand of it by
exchange with Her Majesty, taking from her ancient enclosed pastures
naturally yielding after the rate that his forced enclosed ground can
yield upon such corrupt improvement, and to justify the true value shall
take a lease back again of the Queen, the man is an occupier within the
words of this law. But by your favour, Mr. Speaker, not within the
intent of this law to plough this new enclosure, because Her Majesty is
in reversion, and this law doth not extend neither to her nor to her
farmers. And that none might escape it were good that all of this kind
might be enforced either to a contribution toward the poor,[266] who are
chiefly wronged, or to the breaking up of the grounds he received from
Her Majesty because they come in lieu of the former.

The second moderation that would be amended is in the imposition of the
pain ... which is but 10s. yearly for every acre not converted. By your
favour, Mr. Speaker, it is too easy: and I will tell you, Sir, the ears
of our great sheep-masters do hang at the door of this house, and myself
have heard since this matter grew in question to be reformed, that some,
enquiring and understanding the truths of the penalty, have prepared
themselves to adventure 10s. upon the certainty of the gain of 30s. at
the least. The third moderation is in the exception that exempts grounds
mown for hay to be converted into tillage. And, if it please you, Sir,
the first resolutions our enclosed gentlemen have is to sort and
proportion their grounds into two divisions, the one for walks whereon
their sheep may feed in the fresh summer, the other for hay whereon
their sheep may feed in the hard winter; so that these grounds that
carry hay have been as oil to keep the fire flaming and therefore no
reason why they should be shielded and protected from the ploughshare.

The fourth moderation is that after this reconversion there is no
restraint, but that every one may keep all the land ploughed in his own
hands; whereupon will follow that as now there is scarcity of corn and
plenty of such as would be owners, so then there will be plenty of corn,
but scarcity of such as can be owners. For until our gentlemen that now
enclose much, and then must plough much, shall meet with more compassion
toward the poor than they have done, their small will be as small as it
hath been, and then every one will be either an engrosser under false
pretence of large housekeeping, or else a transporter by virtue of some
license he will hope to purchase. And therefore it were good that every
one should be rated how much he should keep in his own hands, and that
not after the proportions of his present estimation; as, if a man hath
lifted up his countenance by reason of this unnatural and cruel
improvement after the rate of a gentleman of a thousand pounds by year,
where the same quantity of land before would yield but a hundred pounds
by year, I would have this man ruled after his old reckoning....

We sit now in judgment over ourselves: therefore as this bill entered at
first with a short prayer 'God speed the plough.' so I wish it may end
with such success as the plough may speed the poor.

(Endorsed: 1597. To Mr. Speaker against enclosures.)

[Footnote 264: Two Acts against depopulation were passed in this year,
39 Eliz., c. 1, and 39 Eliz., c. 2 (see No. 17 of this section). The
name of the member making the following speech is not known.]

[Footnote 265: 4 Hen. VII, c. 19, by which all occupiers of 20 acres and
upwards which have been tilled for the last three years are to maintain
them in tillage.]

[Footnote 266: For the exaction of such a contribution see Section IV,
No. 20 of this Part.]


19. SPEECHES IN HOUSE OF COMMONS ON ENCLOSURES [_D'Ewes Journal, p.
674_], 1601[267].

The points to be considered of in the continuance of Statutes were read,
and offered still to dispute whether the Statute of Tillage should be
continued.

Mr. Johnson said, In the time of Dearth, when we made this statute, it
was not considered that the hand of God was upon us; and now corn is
cheap; if too cheap, the Husbandman is undone, whom we must provide for,
for he is the staple man of the kingdom. And so after many arguments he
concluded the Statute to be repealed.

Mr. Bacon said the old commendation of Italy by the Poet was _potens
viris atque ubere glebae_, and it stands not with the policy of the
State that the wealth of the kingdom should be engrossed into a few
graziers' hands. And if you will put in so many provisoes as be desired,
you will make it useless. The Husbandman is a strong and hardy man, the
good footman. Which is a chief observation of good warriors, etc. So he
concluded the statutes not to be repealed.

Sir Walter Raleigh said, I think the law fit to be repealed; for many
poor men are not able to find seed to sow so much as they are bound to
plough, which they must do, or incur the penalty of the law. Besides,
all nations abound with corn. France offered the Queen to serve Ireland
with corn for 16s. a quarter, which is but 2s. the bushel; if we should
sell it so here, the ploughman would be beggared. The low countryman and
the Hollander, which never soweth corn, hath by his industry such plenty
that they will serve other nations. The Spaniard, who often wanteth
corn, had we never so much plenty, will not be beholding to the
Englishman for it....

And therefore I think the best course is to set it at liberty, and leave
every man free, which is the desire of a true Englishman.

Mr. Secretary Cecil said, I do not dwell in the country. I am not
acquainted with the plough. But I think that whosoever doth not maintain
the plough destroys this kingdom.... My motion therefore shall be that
this law may not be repealed, except former laws may be in force and
revived. Say that a glut of corn should be, have we not sufficient
remedy by transportation, which is allowable by the policy of all
nations?... I am sure when warrants go from the Council for levying of
men in the countries, and the certificates be returned unto us again, we
find the greatest part of them to be ploughmen. And excepting Sir Thomas
More's Utopia, or some such feigned commonwealth, you shall never find
but the ploughman is chiefly provided for, the neglect whereof will not
only bring a general, but a particular damage to every man.... If we
debar tillage, we give scope to the depopulator; and then if the poor
being thrust out of their houses go to dwell with others, straight we
catch them with the Statute of Inmates; if they wander abroad they are
within danger of the Statute of the Poor to be whipped.

[Footnote 267: No action was taken to amend or repeal existing laws. For
Bacon's views see his _History of King Henry_ VII.]


20. RETURN TO PRIVY COUNCIL OF ENCLOSERS FURNISHED BY JUSTICES OF
LINCOLNSHIRE [_S.P.D. Charles I, Vol. 206, No. 7_], _c._ 1637.

_Lincoln._--An abstract of such depopulators as have been hitherto dealt
withal in Lincolnshire, and received their pardon.

  The persons in number                                   9
  The sum of their fines                                300l.
  The number of houses by bond to be erected             33
  The time for the erection, within one year
  The number of farms to be continued that
    are now standing                                     22
  The fines are already paid.

Sir Charles Hussey, knt. Fine 80l.

Bond of 200 marks, with condition to set up in Honington 8 farmhouses
with barns, etc., and to lay to every house 30 acres of land, and to
keep 10 acres thereof yearly in tillage.

Sir Henry Ayscough, knt. Fine 20l.

Bond 200 marks. To set up 8 farmhouses in Blibroughe with 30 acres to
every farm, and 12 thereof to be kept yearly in tilth.

Sir Hamond Whichcoote, knt. Fine 40l.

Bond 200 marks. To set up 8 farmhouses, etc., in Harpswell, with 40
acres to every house; and 16 thereof in tillage.

Sir Edward Carre, knt. Fine 30l.

Bond 100l. To set up 2 farmhouses in Branswell, and 1 in Aswarby with 40
acres to every house, 16 in tillage.

Sir William Wraye, knt. Fine 30l.

Bond 100l. To set up in Gaynesby 2 farmhouses with 2 acres at least to
either, 10 in tillage, and to continue 2 farms more in Grainsby and 3 in
Newbell and Longworth, with the same quantity, as is now used there, a
third part in tilth.

Sir Edmund Bussye, knt. Fine 10l.

Bond 100l. To set up one farmhouse in Thorpe with 40 acres, 14 thereof
in tillage, and to continue 14 farms in Hedor, Oseby, Aseby, and Thorpe,
as they now are, with a third part in tillage.

Richard Rosetor, esqr. Fine 10l.

Bond 50l. To set up one farm in Limber with 40 acres, 16 in tillage, and
to continue 1 farm in Limber, and 2 in Sereby, _ut sup._

Robert Tirwhitt, esqr. Fine 10l.

Bond 50l. To set up one farm in Cameringham with 40 acres, 16 in
tillage.

John Tredway, gent. Fine 10l.

Bond 40l. To set up one farm in Gelson with 30 acres, 10 thereof in
tillage.

[Endorsed.] Lincoln Depopulators fined and pardoned and the reformations
to be made.


21. COMPLAINT OF LAUD'S ACTION ON THE COMMISSION FOR DEPOPULATION
[_S.P.D. Charles I, Vol. 497, No. 10_], 1641.

That upon the Commission of enquiry after depopulation, the Lord
Archbishop of Canterbury and other the Commissioners, at the
solicitation of Tho. Hussey, gent, did direct a letter in nature of a
Commission to certain persons within the County of Wilts, to certify
what number of acres in South Marston in the parish of Highworth were
converted from arable to pasture, and what number of ploughs were laid
down, etc.

Whereupon the Archdeacon with two others did return certificate, to the
Lord Archbishop, etc.

Upon this certificate, Mr. Anth. Hungerford, Mr. Southby, with 15
others, were convented before his Grace and the other Commissioners at
the Council Board, where, being charged with conversion;

Mr. Anth. Hungerford and Mr. Southby with some others did aver that they
had made no conversion, other than they had when they came to be owners
thereof.

His Grace said that they were to look no further than to the owners. And
certificate was returned that so many acres were converted and so many
ploughs let down.

They alleged that this certificate was false and made without their
privity, and therefore Mr. Hungerford in the behalf of the rest did
desire that they might not be judged upon that certificate; but that
they might have the like favour as Mr. Hussey had, to have certificates
of the same nature directed to other Commissioners, or a Commission, if
it might be granted, to examine upon oath whereby the truth might better
appear.

His Grace replied to Mr. Hungerford, "Since you desire it and are so
earnest for it you shall not have it."[268]

They did offer to make proof that since the conversion there were more
habitations of men of ability and fewer poor, and that whereas the King
had before 4 or 5 soldiers of the trained band he had now 9 there; that
the impropriation was much better to be let.

His Grace said to the rest of the Lords, "We must deal with these
gentlemen as with those of Tedbury, to take 150l. fine, and to lay open
the enclosures."

Which they refusing to do they were there threatened with an information
to be brought against them in the Star Chamber. And accordingly were
within a short time after by the said Mr. Hussey served with
_subpoenas_ at Mr. Attorney his suit in the Star Chamber: And this, as
Mr. Hussey told Mr. Hungerford, was done by my Lord Archbishop his
command.

[Endorsed.] Depopulation. Mr. Hungerford and Mr. Southby. (1641.)

[Footnote 268: See Clarendon, _History of the Rebellion I_, 204.

"And the revenue of too many of the Court consisted principally in
enclosures, and improvements of that nature, which he [_i. e_., Laud],
still opposed passionately except they were founded upon law; and then,
if it would bring profit to the King, how old and obsolete soever the
law was, he thought he might justly advise the prosecution. And so he
did a little too much countenance the Commission for Depopulation, which
brought much charge and trouble upon the people, which was likewise cast
upon his account."]



SECTION II

TOWNS AND GILDS

   1. A Protest at Coventry against a Gild's Exclusiveness, 1495--2. A
   Complaint from Coventry as to Inter-municipal Tariffs, 1498--3. The
   Municipal Regulation of Wages at Norwich, 1518--4. The Municipal
   Regulation of Markets at Coventry, 1520--5. The Municipal Regulation
   of Wages at Coventry, 1524--6. An Act for Avoiding of Exactions taken
   upon Apprentices in Cities, Boroughs, and Towns Corporate, 1536--7.
   An Act whereby certain Chantries, Colleges, Free Chapels, and the
   Possessions of the same be given to the King's Majesty, 1547--8.
   Regrant to Coventry and Lynn of Gild Lands Confiscated under 1 Ed.
   VI, c. 14 (the preceding Act), 1548--9. A Petition of the Bakers of
   Rye to the Mayor, Jurats, and Council to Prevent the Brewers taking
   their trade, 1575--10. Letter to Lord Cobham from the Mayor and
   Jurats of Rye concerning the Preceding Petition, 1575--11. The
   Municipal Regulation of the Entry into Trade at Nottingham,
   1578-9--12. The Municipal Regulation of Markets at Southampton,
   1587--13. The Municipal Regulation of Wages at Chester, 1591--14. The
   Company of Journeymen Weavers of Gloucester, 1602--15. Petition of
   Weavers who are not Burgesses, 1604-5--16. Extracts from the London
   Clothworkers' Court Book, 1537-1627--17. The Feltmakers' Joint-Stock
   Project, 1611--18. The Case of the Tailors of Ipswich, 1615--19. The
   Grievances of the Journeymen Weavers of London, _c._ 1649.


The documents in this section illustrate certain aspects of the life of
towns and gilds from 1485-1660. In the first half of the sixteenth
century two important changes in the legal position of gilds were made
by Act of Parliament, (i) Owing to the growing complaints of their
exclusiveness (Nos. 1 and 6). Parliament had already by 15 Hen. VI, c.
6, and 19 Hen. VII, c. 7, compelled gilds to submit their ordinances to
the approval of extra-municipal authorities before they became valid
(Nos. 6 and 17). By 22 Hen. VIII it fixed 2s. 6d. as the maximum fee to
be charged persons entering and 3s. 4d. as the maximum fee for persons
leaving their apprenticeship. By 28 Hen. VIII c. 5 it forbad restrictive
agreements designed to prevent apprentices or journeymen starting in
trade on their own account (No. 6). (ii.) By 37 Hen. VIII c. 4 and 1 Ed.
VI. c. 14 (No. 7) Parliament confiscated for the benefit of the Crown
that part of gild property which was applied to religious purposes. The
latter Act was, however, strongly opposed in the House of Commons, and
the confiscated estates were restored to two towns, Coventry and King's
Lynn (No. 8).

Apart from these changes towns and gilds pursued in the sixteenth
century much the same economic policy as in earlier ages. They imposed
inter-municipal tariffs (No. 2), and regulated markets (Nos. 4 and 12),
wages (Nos. 3, 5, and 13), apprenticeship and the entry into trades
(Nos. 1, 9, 10, 11, 15) on high moral grounds (No. 10), but sometimes
with consequences unpleasant to those who were excluded (Nos. 1 and 15).
Indeed their anxiety to preserve their monopoly occasionally brought
them into conflict with the law, which "abhors all monopolies" (No. 18).
Inside the gilds, however, a momentous change was going on. The
fifteenth century had seen the rise within gilds of "yeomanry"
organizations consisting of journeymen, of which an example is given
below (No. 14, and Part I, Section V, No. 16). In the sixteenth and
seventeenth centuries the gilds, at least in the larger towns,
represented a wide range of interests, from the mercantile capitalist to
the industrial small master, and it was often of such small masters,
whose numbers appear to have increased in the sixteenth century, that
the "yeomanry" then consisted (No. 16). They tended, however, to be at
the mercy of the large capitalists, and occasionally under the first two
Stuarts, who favoured them, they endeavoured to protect themselves by
joint-stock enterprise (No. 17). In the middle of the seventeenth
century a reverse movement was taking place. Small masters were becoming
journeymen, and in London journeymen were engaged under the Commonwealth
in active agitation. Their organization was that of an embryo trade
union; their doctrine the application to industrial affairs of the
theory of the social contract (No. 19).


AUTHORITIES

   The more accessible of the modern writers dealing with the subject of
   this section are Cunningham, _English Industry and Commerce, Modern
   Times_, Vol. I; Ashley, _Economic History_, Vol. I, Part II, Chap. I
   and II; Gross, _The Gild Merchant_; Abram, _Social England in the
   Fifteenth Century_; Mrs. Green, _English Town Life in the Fifteenth
   Century_; Dunlop and Denman, _English Apprenticeship and Child
   Labour_; Unwin, _Industrial Organization in the Sixteenth and
   Seventeenth Centuries_, and _The Gilds and Companies of London_;
   Webb, _English Local Government, The Manor and Borough_; Brentano,
   _Gilds and Trade Unions_; Toulmin Smith, _English Gilds_; Rogers,
   _Six Centuries of Work and Wages_.

   Bibliographies are given in Gross, _op. cit._ (the most complete);
   Cunningham _op. cit._, Vol. II, pp. 943-998; Ashley, _op. cit._, pp.
   3-5 and 66-68; Abram, _op. cit._, pp. 229-238; Dunlop and Denman,
   _op. cit._, pp. 355-363; Unwin, _Industrial Organization in the
   Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries_, pp. 263-270.

       *       *       *       *       *

   The student may also consult the following:--

   (1) _Documentary Authorities_:--The records of numerous towns and
   gilds have been published, and only a few can be mentioned
   here:--Stevenson, Records of Nottingham; Tingey, Records of Norwich;
   Bateson, Records of Leicester; Morris, Chester in the Plantagenet and
   Tudor Reigns; Turner, Select Records of Oxford; Harris, The Coventry
   Leet Book (E.E.T.S.); Bickley, The Little Red Book of Bristol;
   Guilding, Records of the Borough of Reading; Publications of the
   Historical Manuscripts Commission, Report 14, App. viii (Bury St.
   Edmunds); 15, App. x (Coventry), 12, App. ix (Gloucester), 13, App.
   iv (Hereford); 9, App. i (Ipswich); 14, App. viii (Lincoln); 15, App.
   x (Shrewsbury).

   (2) _Literary Authorities_:--The number of contemporary writers
   dealing with gild and town life is not large. The most important are:
   Drei Volkswirthschaftliche Denkscriften aus der Zeit Heinrich VIII,
   von England, edited by Pauli; Starkey, A Dialogue Between Cardinal
   Pole and Thomas Lupset (E.E.T.S.); England in the Reign of King Henry
   VIII; The Commonwealth of this Realm of England (edited by Lamond);
   Crowley, Select Works (E.E.T.S.); Lever's Sermons (in Arber Reprints:
   where criticisms will be found on the confiscation of gild property);
   Harrison, A Description of Britain; Roxburghe Club, A Dialogue or
   Confabulation Between two Travellers.


1. A PROTEST AT COVENTRY AGAINST A GILD'S EXCLUSIVENESS [_Coventry Leet
Book, Vol. II, pp. 566-7_], 1495.

1495. Mem.: that within vii days after Lammas there was a bill set upon
the north church door in St. Michael's Church by some evil disposed
person unknown, the tenor whereof hereafter ensueth:--

  Be it known and understand
  This city should be free and now is bond.

  Dame Good Eve made it free,
  And now there be customs for wool and drapery.

  Also it is made that no prentice shall be
  But xiii pennies pay shall he.

  That act did Robert Green,[269]
  Wherefore he had many a curse, I ween.

[Footnote 269: Robert Green was chosen Mayor of Coventry in 1494.]


2. A COMPLAINT FROM COVENTRY AS TO INTER-MUNICIPAL TARIFFS [_Coventry
Leet Book, Part I, p. 592_], 1498.

Oct. 18th, 1498 ... And on the morrow the Mayor presented a bill to the
said Prince desiring by the same that he would please to desire the
prior of Coventry to pay at his desire the murage money which he had
withdrawn the space of 20 years, and also showed his Grace by the same
bill how the citizens of Coventry were troubled by their merchandizes in
Bristol, Gloucester, and Worcester, and compelled to pay toll and other
customs contrary to their liberties. Upon which bill letters went out to
Bristol, Gloucester, and Worcester, desiring by the same that the said
citizens of Coventry might pass free without any custom paying after
their liberty, or else they appear in London _crastino St. Martini_ then
next following.


3. THE MUNICIPAL REGULATION OF WAGES AT NORWICH [_Tingey. Selected
Records of Norwich, II, p. 110_], 1518.

Sept. 21st, 1518. It is agreed that from henceforth no artificer shall
employ apprentice working by the day, viz., carpenters, masons, tilers,
reeders, by taking for the wage of such an apprentice more than one
penny a day until he has been appointed to better wages or salary by the
headman of that craft in the presence of the Mayor for the time being.
And if any one shall do contrary, he shall forfeit 12d., to be levied
from the goods of the master of that apprentice.


4. THE MUNICIPAL REGULATION OF MARKETS AT COVENTRY [_Coventry Leet Book,
Part III, pp. 674-5_], 1520.

October 10, 1520. Memorandum that the Xth day of October and in the
[eleventh] year of the reign of King Henry VIII, then Master John Bond
being Mayor of the City of Coventry, the price of all manner of corn and
grain began to rise. Whereupon a view was taken by the said Mayor and
his brethren what stores of all manner of corn, and what number of
people was then within the said city, men, women and children, etc.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Here follow particulars of the number of persons and amount of grain in
each ward.]

  Summa Totalis of    }                   { In Malt, 2405 qrs.
  the people then     }                   { In Rye and Mastlin, 100
  being within the    }   Summa Totalis   {    qrs. 1 strike.
  city, of men        }   6601 persons.   { In wheat, 47 qrs.
  women and children. }                   { In Oats, 39 qrs. 2 strike.
                      }                   { In Pease, 18 qrs. 2 strike.

Also a view by him taken what substance of malt was then brewed within
the city weekly by the common brewers that brewed to sell.... The number
of all the common brewers in the city ... 68. Item, they brewed weekly
in malt 146 qrs. 1 bus.

Mem., that there was brought into this said city the Friday before
Christmas Day in the year of the said John Bond then being Mayor, by his
labour and his friends, to help sustain the city with corn, of all
manner of grain Summa 97 qrs. 6 strike.

Mem., that there was at that time 43 bakers within the city, which did
bake weekly amongst all 120 qrs. of wheat and 12, besides pease and
rye.


5. THE MUNICIPAL REGULATION OF WAGES AT COVENTRY [_Coventry Leet Book,
Part III, pp. 688-9_], 1524.

[Enacted] that the weavers of this city shall have for the weaving of
every cloth, to the making whereof goeth and is put 80 and 8 lb. of wool
or more to the number of 80 lb. and 16, 5s. for the weaving of every
such cloth; and if the said cloth contain above the said number then the
weaving to be paid for as the parties can agree, and if the cloth
contain under the said number, then the owner to pay for weaving but 4s.
6d. And if the cloth be made of rests or green wool, then to pay as the
parties can agree; and the payment to be made in ready money and not in
wares as it is wont to be, and who refuses thus to do, and so proved
before Master Mayor, to forfeit for every said default 3s. 4d., to be
levied by the searchers of the said craft of weavers, with an officer to
them appointed by the said Mayor, to the use of the common box.
[Enacted] that every clothier within this city shall pay for walking of
every cloth of green wool or middle work, 3s. 4d., and for every cloth
of fine wool as the clothier and walker can agree, and that the clothier
do pay therefore in ready money and not in wares.


6. AN ACT FOR AVOIDING OF EXACTIONS TAKEN UPON APPRENTICES IN CITIES,
BOROUGHS AND TOWNS CORPORATE [_28 Hen. VIII, c. 5. Statutes of the
Realm, Vol. IV, Part I, pp. 286-8_], 1536.

Where in the parliament begun at London the third of November in the
21st year of the reign of our most dread Lord King Henry the eight, and
from thence adjourned and prorogued to Westminster the 16 day of January
in the 22 year of the reign of our said Sovereign Lord and there then
also holden, it was and it is recited, that where before that time it
was established and enacted in the 19 year of our late Sovereign Lord
King Henry the VIIth, that no masters, warden and fellowship of crafts,
or any of them, nor any rulers of guilds or fraternities, should take
upon them any acts or ordinances nor to execute any acts or ordinances
by them before that time made or then hereafter to be made, in
disheritance or diminution of the prerogative of the King nor of other
nor against the common profit of the people, but if the same acts or
ordinances were examined or approved by the chancellor, treasurer of
England or chief justice of either bench or 3 of them, or before the
justices of assize in their circuit or progress in the shire where such
acts or ordinances be made, upon pain of forfeiture of £40 for every
time that they do the contrary, as more plainly in the said act doth
appear; since which time divers wardens and fellowships have made acts
and ordinances, that every apprentice should pay at his first entry in
their common hall to the wardens of the same fellowship some of them
40s., some 30s., some 20s., some 13s. 4d., some 6s. 8d., some 3s. 4d.
after their own sinister minds and pleasure, contrary to the meaning of
the said act made in the said 19 year of the reign of the said late King
Henry the VIIth and to the great hurt of the King's true subjects
putting their children to be apprentices: It was therefore in the said
parliament holden at Westminster in the said 22 year of the reign of
King Henry the eight, established and enacted by the King our Sovereign
Lord by the advice of his Lords, Spiritual and Temporal, and of the
Commons in the same parliament assembled and by the authority of the
same, that no master, wardens or fellowships of crafts or masters or any
of them, nor any rulers of fraternities should take from thenceforth of
any apprentice or of any other person or persons for the entry of any
apprentice into their said fellowship above the sum of 2s. 6d., nor for
his entry when his years and term is expired and ended, above 3s. 4d.
upon pain of forfeiture of £40 for every time that they do to the
contrary.... Since which said several acts established and made (as is
aforesaid), divers masters, wardens and fellowships of crafts have by
cautell and subtil means compassed and practised to defraud and delude
the said good and wholesome statutes, causing divers apprentices or
young men immediately after their years be expired, or that they may be
made free of their occupation or fellowship, to be sworn upon the Holy
Evangelist at their first entry that they nor any of them after their
years or term expired shall not set up or open any shop, house nor
[cellar] nor occupy as free men, without the assent and licence of the
master, wardens or fellowships of their occupations, upon pain of
forfeiting their freedom or other like penalty; by reason whereof the
said apprentices and journeymen be put to as much or more charges
thereby than they beforetime were put unto for the obtaining and
entering of their freedom, to the great hurt and impoverishment of the
said apprentices and journeymen and other their friends; For remedy
whereof be it now by the authority of this present parliament
established, ordained and enacted, that no master, wardens or
fellowships of crafts nor any of them, nor any rulers of guilds
fraternities or brotherhoods, from henceforth compel or cause any
apprentice or journeyman, by oath or bond heretofore made or hereafter
to be made or otherwise, that he after his apprenticeship or term
expired, shall not set up nor keep any shop house nor cellar, nor occupy
as a freeman without licence of the masters, wardens or fellowships of
his or their occupation for and concerning the same; nor by any means
exact or take of any such apprentices or journeyman nor any other
occupying for themselves, nor of any other persons for them, after his
or their said years expired, any sum of money or other things for or
concerning his or their freedom or occupation, otherwise or in any other
manner than before is recited limited and appointed in the said former
act made in the said 22 year of the reign of King Henry the eight; upon
the pain to forfeit for every time that they or any of them shall offend
contrary to this act £40....


7. AN ACT WHEREBY CERTAIN CHANTRIES, COLLEGES, FREE CHAPELS, AND THE
POSSESSIONS OF THE SAME BE GIVEN TO THE KING'S MAJESTY [_1 Ed. VI, c.
14. Statutes of the Realm, Vol. IV, Part I, p. 24_], 1547.

The King's most loving subjects, the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and
the Commons, in this present parliament assembled, considering that a
great part of superstition and errors in Christian religion hath been
brought into the minds and estimation of men, by reason of the ignorance
of their very true and perfect salvation through the death of Jesus
Christ, and by devising and phantasing vain opinions of purgatory and
masses satisfactory to be done for them which be departed, the which
doctrine and vain opinion by nothing more is maintained and upholden
than by the abuse of trentalls, chantries and other provisions made for
the continuance of the said blindness and ignorance; and further
considering and understanding that the alteration, change and amendment
of the same, and converting to good and godly uses, as in erecting of
grammar schools to the education of youth in virtue and godliness, the
further augmenting of the universities and better provision for the poor
and needy, cannot in this present parliament be provided and
conveniently done, nor cannot nor ought to any other manner person be
committed than to the King's Highness, whose Majesty with and by the
advice of his Highness most prudent council can and will most wisely and
beneficially both for the honour of God and the weal of this his
Majesty's realm, order, alter, convert and dispose the same....

[Clause reciting 37 Hen. VIII, c. 4.][270]

... It is now ordained and enacted by the King our Sovereign Lord, with
the assent of the Lords and Commons in this present parliament
assembled, and by the authority of the same, that all manner of
colleges, free chapels and chantries, having been or _in esse_ within
five years next before the first day of this present parliament, which
were not in actual and real possession of the said late king, nor in the
actual and real possession of the king our sovereign lord that now is,
nor excepted in the said former act in form abovesaid, other than such
as by the king's commissions in form hereafter mentioned shall be
altered, transposed or changed, and all manors, lands, tenements, rents,
tythes, pensions, portions and other hereditaments and things
above-mentioned belonging to them or any of them, and also all manors,
lands, tenements, rents and other hereditaments and things
above-mentioned, by any manner of assurance, conveyance, will, devise or
otherwise had, made, suffered, acknowledged or declared, given,
assigned, limited or appointed to the finding of any priest to have
continuance for ever, and wherewith or whereby any priest was sustained,
maintained or found, within five years next before the first day of this
present parliament, which were not in the actual and real possession of
the said late King, nor in the actual and real possession of our
Sovereign Lord the King that now is, and also all annual rents, profits,
and emoluments, at any time within five years next before the beginning
of this present parliament employed, paid or bestowed toward or for the
maintenance, supportation or finding of any stipendiary priest intended
by any act or writing to have continuance for ever, shall by the
authority of this present parliament, immediately after the feast of
Easter next coming, be adjudged and deemed and also be in very actual
and real possession and seisin of the King our Sovereign Lord and his
heirs and successors for ever; without any office or other inquisition
thereof to be had or found, and in as large and ample manner and form as
the priests, wardens, masters, ministers, governors, rulers or other
incumbents of them or any of them at any time within five years next
before the beginning of this present parliament had occupied or enjoyed,
or now hath, occupieth or enjoyeth the same; and as though all and
singular the said colleges, free chapels, chantries, stipends, salaries
of priests and the said manors, lands, tenements and other the premises
whatsoever they be, and every of them, were in this present act
specially, particularly, and certainly rehearsed, named and expressed,
by express words, names and surnames, corporations, titles and
faculties, and in their natures, kinds and qualities....

And over that be it ordained and enacted by the authority of this
present parliament, that where any manors, lands, tenements, tythes,
pensions, portions, rents, profits, or other hereditaments, by any
manner of assurance, conveyance, will, devise or otherwise at any time
heretofore had, made, suffered, acknowledged or declared, were given
assigned or appointed to or for the maintenance, sustentation or finding
of any priest or divers priests for term of certain years yet
continuing, and that any priest hath been maintained, sustained or found
with the same or with the revenues or profits thereof within five years
last past, that the king from the said feast of Easter next coming shall
have and enjoy in every behalf for and during all such time to come
every such and like things, tenements, hereditaments, profits and
emoluments as the priest or priests ought or should have had for or
toward his or their maintenance, sustenance or finding, and for no
longer or further time, nor for any other profit, advantage or commodity
thereof to be taken....

... And be it ordained and enacted by the authority of this present
parliament, that the King our Sovereign Lord, his heirs and successors,
from the said feast of Easter next coming, shall have hold, perceive and
enjoy for ever, all lands, tenements, rents and other hereditaments
which, by any manner of assurance, conveyance, wills, will, devise or
otherwise at any time heretofore had made suffered, acknowledged, or
declared, were given, assigned or appointed to go or be employed wholly
to the finding or maintenance of any anniversary or obit or other like
thing, intent, or purpose, or of any light or lamp in any church or
chapel to have continuance for ever, which hath been kept or maintained
within five years next before the said first day of this present
parliament.

... And furthermore be it ordained and enacted by the authority
aforesaid, that the King our Sovereign Lord shall from the said feast of
Easter next coming have and enjoy to him, his heirs and successors for
ever, all fraternities, brotherhoods and guilds being within the realm
of England and Wales and other the king's dominions, and all manors,
lands, tenements and other hereditaments belonging to them or any of
them, other than such corporations, guilds, fraternities, companies and
fellowships of mysteries or crafts, and the manors, lands, tenements,
and other hereditaments pertaining to the said corporations, guilds,
fraternities, companies and fellowships of mysteries or crafts above
mentioned, and shall by virtue of this act be judged and deemed in
actual and real possession of our said Sovereign Lord the King, his
heirs and successors from the said feast of Easter next coming for ever,
without any inquisitions or office thereof to be had or found....

And also be it ordained and enacted by the authority aforesaid, that our
said Sovereign Lord the King, his heirs and successors, at his and their
will and pleasure, may direct his and their commission and commissions
under the great seal of England to such persons as it shall please him,
and that the same commissioners, or two of them at the least, shall have
full power and authority by virtue of this Act and of the said
commission, as well to survey all and singular lay corporations, guilds,
fraternities, companies and fellowships of mysteries or crafts
incorporate, and every of them, as all other the said fraternities,
brotherhoods and guilds within the limit of their commission to them
directed, and all the evidences, compositions, books of accounts and
other writings of every of them, to the intent thereby to know what
money and other things was paid or bestowed to the finding or
maintenance of any priest or priests, anniversary, or obit or other like
thing, light or lamp, by them or any of them; as also to enquire, search
and try, by all such ways and means as to them shall be thought meet and
convenient, what manors, lands, tenements, rents and other
hereditaments, profits, commodities, emoluments and other things be
given, limited, or appointed to our said Lord the King by this act,
within the limits of their commission: and also that the same
commissioners or two of them at the least, by virtue of this act and of
the commission to them directed, shall have full power and authority to
assign and shall appoint, in every such place where guild, fraternity,
the priest or incumbent of any chantry _in esse_ the first day of this
present parliament, by the foundation, ordinance, [the] first
institution thereof should or ought to have kept a grammar school or a
preacher, and so hath done since the feast of St. Michael the Archangel
last past, lands, tenements and other hereditaments of every such
chantry, guild and fraternity to remain and continue in succession to a
schoolmaster or preacher for ever, for and toward the keeping of a
grammar school or preaching, and for such godly intents and purposes and
in such manner and form as the same commissioners or two of them at the
least shall assign or appoint: and also to make and ordain a vicar to
have perpetuity for ever in every parish church, the first day of this
present parliament being a college, free chapel, or chantry, or
appropriated and annexed or united to any college, free chapel, or
chantry that shall come to the king's hands by virtue of this act, and
to endow every such vicar sufficiently, having respect to his cure and
charge; the same endowment to be to every vicar and to his successors
for ever, without any other license or grant of the King, the bishop, or
other officers of the diocese: ...

... And also be it ordained and enacted by the authority of this present
parliament that our Sovereign Lord the King shall have and enjoy all
such goods, chattels, jewels, plate, ornaments and other moveables, as
were or be the common goods of every such college, chantry, free chapel,
or stipendiary priest belonging or annexed to the furniture or service
of their several foundations, or abused of any of the said corporations
in the abuses aforesaid, the property whereof was not altered nor
changed before the 8 day of December in the year of our Lord God
1547....

[Footnote 270: This and the following document deal with the
confiscation of that part of the property of gilds which was devoted to
religious purposes. The Act printed above was a re-enactment with some
important variations of an Act of 1545 (37 Hen. VIII, c. 4). For its
object and effect see Ashley, _Economic History_, Vol. I, part II, pp.
142-145, and pp. 184-187, who gives reasons for disagreeing with the
statement of Thorold Rogers (_Six Centuries of Work and Wages_, pp.
347-350, and _The Economic Interpretation of English History_, p. 15)
that the Act "suppressed" the craft gilds; Pollard, _The Political
History of England_ 1547-1603, pp. 17-20 ("the greatest educational
opportunity in English history was lost, and the interests of the nation
were sacrificed to those of its aristocracy"); Leach, _English Schools
at the Reformation_, p. 68; Toulmin Smith's _English Gilds_. Lever
(_Sermons_ 1550, Arber's Reprints, pp. 32, 73, and 81) complains
bitterly of the use to which the confiscated property was put. "For in
suppressing of abbeys, cloisters, colleges, and chantries, the intent of
the King's Majesty that dead is, was, and of this our King now is, very
godly.... Howbeit covetous officers have so used this matter that even
those goods which did serve to the relief of the poor, the maintenance
of learning, and to comfortable necessary hospitality in the
Commonwealth, be now turned to maintain worldly, wicked, covetous
ambition." ... "Your Majesty hath had given and received by Act of
Parliament, colleges, chantries, and gilds for many good considerations,
and especially, as appeareth in the same Act, for erecting of grammar
schools to the education of youth in virtue and godliness, to the
further augmenting of the Universities, and better provision for the
poor and needy. But now many grammar schools, and much charitable
provision for the poor be taken, sold, and made away, to the great
slander of you and your laws, to the utter discomfort of the poor, to
the grievous offence of the people, to the most miserable drowning of
youth in ignorance, and for decay of the Universities."]


8. REGRANT TO COVENTRY AND LYNN OF GILD LANDS CONFISCATED UNDER I ED.
VI, c. 14. [_Acts of the Privy Council, New Series, pp 193-5_], 1548.

At Westminster, Sunday, the vith of May, 1548

Whereas in the last parliament, holden at Westminster in November, the
first year of the King's Majesty's reign, among other articles contained
in the act for colleges and chantry lands, etc., to be given unto his
Highness, it was also inserted that the lands pertaining to all guilds
and brotherhoods within this realm should pass unto his Majesty by way
of like gift, at which time divers then being of the lower house did not
only reason and argue against that article made for the guildable lands,
but also incensed many others to hold with them, among the which none
were stiffer nor more busily went about to impugn the said articles than
the burgesses for the town of Lynn, in the county of Norfolk, and the
burgesses of the city of Coventry, in the county of Warwick; the
burgesses of Lynn alleging that the guild lands belonging to their said
town were given for so good a purpose (that is to say, for the
maintenance and keeping up of the pier and seabanks there, which being
untended to would be the loss of a great deal of low ground of the
country adjoining), as it were great pity the same should be alienated
from them as long as they employed it to so necessary an use; and
semblably they of Coventry declaring that where that city was of much
fame and antiquity, some times very wealthy though now of late years
brought into decay and poverty, and had not to the furniture of the
whole multitude of the Commons there, being to the number of xi or xii
thousand housling people, but two churches wherein God's service is
done, whereof the one, that is to say, the church of Corpus Christi, was
specially maintained of the revenues of such guild lands lying only in
houses and tenements within the town as had been given heretofore by
diverse persons to that use and others no less beneficial to the
supporting of that city; if therefore now by the act the same lands
should pass from them it should be a manifest cause of the utter
desolation of the city, as long as the people, when the churches were no
longer supported, nor God's service done therein, and the other uses and
employments of those lands omitted, should be of force constrained to
abandon the city and seek new dwelling places, which should be more loss
unto the King's Majesty by losing so [much] of the yearly fee farm
there, and subversion of so notable a town, than the accruing of a sort
of old houses and cottages pertaining to the guilds and chantries of the
said cities, should be of value or profit to his Majesty, as long as his
Highness should be at more cost with the reparations of the same than
the yearly rents would amount unto.

In respect of which their allegations and great labour made herein unto
the House, such of his Highness Council as were of the same House there
present thought it very likely and apparent that not only that article
for the guildable lands should be dashed, but also that the whole body
of the act might either sustain peril or hindrance being already
engrossed, and the time of the Parliament Prorogation hard at hand,
unless by some good policy the principal speakers against the passing of
that article might be stayed; whereupon they did anticipate this matter
with the Lord Protector's Grace and others of the Lords of his Highness
Council, who, pondering on the one part how the guildable lands
throughout this realm amounted to no small yearly value, which by the
article aforesaid were to be accrued to his Majesty's possessions of the
Crown; and on the other part weighing in a multitude of free voices what
moment the labour of a few setters on had been of heretofore in like
cases, thought it better to stay and content them of Lynn and Coventry
by granting to them to have and enjoy their guild lands, etc., as they
did before, than through their means, on whose importune labour and
suggestion the great part of the Lower House rested, to have the article
defaced, and so his Majesty to forego the whole guild lands throughout
the realm; and for these respects and also for avoiding of the proviso
which the said burgesses would have had added for the guilds to this
article, which might have ministered occasion to others to have laboured
for the like, they resolved that certain of his Highness' Councillors
being of the Lower House should persuade with the said burgesses of Lynn
and Coventry to desist from further speaking or labouring against the
said article, upon promise to them that if they meddled no further
against it, his Majesty, once having the guildable lands granted unto
him by the act as it was penned unto him, should make them over a new
grant of the lands pertaining then unto their guilds, etc., to be had
and used to them as afore. Which thing the said Councillors did execute
as was devised, and thereby stayed the speakers against it, so as the
act passed with the clause for guildable lands accordingly.

And now seeing that the Mayors and others of the said city of Coventry
and town of Lynn by reason of that promise so made unto them have humbly
made suit unto the Lord Protector's Grace and Council aforesaid that the
same may be performed unto them, which promise his Grace and the said
Council do think that his Highness is bound in honour to observe,
although it were not so that indeed those lands which belonged to the
guild at Lynn cannot well be taken from them, being so allotted and
employed to the maintenance of the pier and seabanks there, which of
necessity as was alleged, require daily reparations, no more than the
guild and chantry lands at Coventry upon the foresaid considerations
could conveniently (as was thought) be taken from them without putting
the said city to apparent danger of desolation; it was therefore this
day ordained, and by the accord and assent of the Lord Protector's Grace
and others of his Highness Council decreed, that letters patents should
be made in due form under the King's Majesty's Great Seal of England
whereby the said guild lands belonging to the two churches at Coventry
should be newly granted unto them of the city for ever, and the lands
lately pertaining to the guild of Lynn also granted unto that town for
ever, to be used to such like purpose and intent as aforetimes by force
of their grants they were limited to do accordingly.


9. A PETITION OF THE BAKERS OF RYE TO THE MAYOR, JURATS AND COUNCIL TO
PREVENT THE BREWERS TAKING THEIR TRADE [_Hist. MSS. Com, Thirteenth
Report, App. Part IV, p. 45_], 1575.

Whereas, as well in ancient time as now of late days, good and wholesome
laws have been by the State of this realm devised, ordained, and enacted
for the better maintenance of the subjects of the same; amongst which
laws it is ordained how each sort of people, being handicraftsmen or of
occupation, should use the trade and living wherein they have been
lawfully trained up and served for the same as the said laws do appoint;
nevertheless, it may please your worships, divers persons do seek unto
themselves by sinister ways and contrary to those good laws certain
trades to live by, and not only to live by but inordinately to gain, to
the utter overthrow of their neighbours which have lawfully used those
occupations, and served for the same according to the said laws. Amongst
which sort of people certain of the brewers of this town use the trade
and occupation of bakers, not having been apprentices to the same, nor
so lawfully served in the same trade as they thereby may justly
challenge to use the said occupation of baking, to the utter
impoverishment of the bakers of the said town, their wives, children,
and families, and contrary to the law, equity, and good conscience;
whereby we whose names are underwritten shall be constrained to give
over, and for themselves to seek some other means to live, and to leave
our wives and children, if in time remedy be not provided by your
worships for the same.

  James Welles.
  John Mylles.
  Edward Turner.
  Philip Caudy.
  William Gold.


10. LETTER TO LORD COBHAM FROM THE MAYOR AND JURATS OF RYE CONCERNING
THE PRECEDING PETITION [_ibid., pp. 47-8_], 1575.

Upon the lamentable complaint of our poor neighbours the bakers, we did
with good and long deliberation consider of their cause, and finding
that their decay is such as without speedy reformation they shall not
have wherewith to maintain their wives, children, and family, which are
not few in number, a thing in conscience to be lamented, and we for
remission in duty to be greatly blamed; and since the overthrow of these
poor men is happened by reason of the brewers (who ought by the laws of
this realm not to be bakers also) have by our sufferance (but the rather
for that Robert Jackson is towards your Lordship) used both to bake and
brew of long time, whereby Robert Jackson (God be thanked) is grown to
good wealth, and the whole company of the bakers thereby utterly
impoverished, and finding that by no reasonable persuasion from us,
neither with the lamentable complaint of the bakers, those brewers would
leave baking, we were driven by justice and conscience to provide for
their relief the speedier. Whereupon we did, with consent of Mayor,
Jurats, and Common Council, make a certain decree, lawful, as we think,
for the better maintenance of them, their wives, children and family, a
matter in civil government worth looking into when the state of a common
weal is preferred before the private gain of a few, which decree we
required Mr. Gaymer to acquaint your Honour with, at his last being with
you, who upon his return advertised us that your Lordship had the view
thereof, and also of your Honour's well liking of the same, humbly
beseeching your good Lordship's aid and continuance therein, whereof we
have no doubt, being a matter that doth concern (and that according to
the laws of the realm) the relief of those who are brought to the brink
of decay.


11. THE MUNICIPAL REGULATION OF THE ENTRY INTO TRADES AT NOTTINGHAM
[_Stevenson, Nottingham Records, Vol. IV, p. 186_], 1578-9.

1578-9, March 9. Memorandum also, that all manner of prentices already
bound and to be bound to bring their indentures to be enrolled before
May day next, or else every master to forfeit 12d. And the Mayor to
admit no burgess but by consent of the Wardens of the occupation in
default of the Wardens; and to have a special regard that such have been
and served as apprentices and been enabled, according to the statute of
anno 5 of Queen Elizabeth.


12. MUNICIPAL REGULATION OF MARKETS AT SOUTHAMPTON [_Hearnshaw,
Southampton Court Leet Records, Vol. I, Part II, p. 256_], 1587.

_Item_ we present that Mr. Brawycke, who, it is said ... was bound unto
your worships for the serving of the inhabitants of this town with
candles at 2d. the lb., having all the tallow of the victuallers to this
town at a price reasonable to his good liking and great commodity many
years, restraining all others from having any part thereof by virtue of
his grant from your worships as aforesaid, a scarcity of tallow now
happening for one year, doth presently refuse to serve the inhabitants
at any reasonable price, and the best cheap that is to be had is 3d.,
and many times 4d. the lb.; a happy man that can make his bargain so
well to take it when there is profit and refuse to serve when the profit
faileth, and to raise it at his own will for his best advantage, and to
tie all men and himself to be at liberty; the artificers and the poorer
sort of people are most of all pinched, wherewith they, with the rest,
find themselves aggrieved, so desire your worships thoroughly to
consider thereof.


13. THE MUNICIPAL REGULATION OF WAGES AT CHESTER [_Morris, Chester in
the Plantagenet and Tudor Reigns, p. 436_], 1591.

30 July, 33 Eliz. And at the same assembly Mr. Mayor delivered the
corporation of the wrights and slaters, letting to understand of their
great exactions of the citizens and servants, whereby they deserved to
be disfranchised and their corporations dissolved. Whereupon it was
thought most meet that Mr. Mayor do call before him the aldermen and
stewards thereof, and take them in bond for redress and remedy of all
such wrongs ... and in the meantime their corporation to be retained and
also receive and give from time to time such wages as shall be appointed
by the Mayor for the time being.


14. THE COMPANY OF JOURNEYMEN WEAVERS OF GLOUCESTER [_Hist. MSS. Com.,
Twelfth Report, App. Part IX, pp.416-418_], 1602.

Thos. Machyn, Mayor of the City of Gloucester, to all to whom, etc. Know
ye that there came this day into the Court of the aldermen there divers
of the journeymen weavers of the said city in the name of their whole
fellowship of journeymen, and signified by their petition that whereas
before this time sundry good ordinances have been made and granted by,
and agreed upon by and between the master weavers of the said city,
known by the name of the Warden and Fraternity of St. Anne of the
weavers in the town of Gloucester, and the said journeymen, for the good
order and government of man and for their better relief; and some disuse
of the same has been of late years through the negligence of some of the
said journeymen, and upon this untrue intendment that some of the said
ordinances were not warrantable by the laws of this realm, nor
convenient for the public good of the said city; it has therefore seemed
fit to us, the Mayor and Aldermen, not only thoroughly to consider the
said articles, but also to consider such books of compositions as have
been heretofore given to the said company or fraternity of weavers,
either by our predecessors or by the justices of assize of the county of
the city; we have therefore called before us the Wardens and Stewards of
the said fraternity or company to hear what they could or would say
thereupon for our better information, requiring them further to shew us
their books of compositions; who very willingly and orderly brought
before us the several books hereafter mentioned; one book approved by
the Justices of Assize, dated 10 Nov., 24 Henry VII, another book
granted by our predecessors, also allowed by the Justices of Assize,
dated 13 March, 4 Edward VI. We, having fully considered the said books,
are pleased, with the consent of the present Warden and Stewards of the
said Company of Weavers and of others the masters of the said Company
occupying the trade of weaving within the said city, to allow that the
journeymen of the said trade in the said city may in quiet and orderly
sort at any time hereafter congregate and meet together at any fit place
within the said city and such time of the day, between the hours of
seven of the clock in the forenoon and four of the clock in the
afternoon, as to them shall be thought fit and convenient, ever giving
notice to the Warden of the said Company of weavers or, in his absence,
to one of the stewards of the said fraternity one day before, at the
least, of their meaning and purpose to meet, to the intent that if the
said Warden or any of the said Company of the master weavers shall think
or know anything meet to be considered of and conferred of between them,
that the same might be proposed and so concluded of as might stand with
equity and good order, and to the end that a quiet and peaceable
demeanour with orderly and civil usage may be by and among the said
whole company of journeymen at all times hereafter observed, and that
the one to the other of them may give that brotherly aid and Christian
relief as best may be for their helps, some of them being young men and
bachelors having neither houses of their own or family, and some others
of great years burdened with the charge of wife and many children; it is
therefore thought good by us, with the assent of the said
master-weavers, that they the said journeymen shall and lawfully may
yearly, on the day of Saint Peter the Apostle, meet together and choose
two honest and discreet journeymen of the elder and discreetest sort of
them to be their Stewards for the year ensuing, which Stewards shall
have power and authority to assemble and call together all the
journeymen of the said art or others whatsoever professing and using the
trade of weaving in the said city or suburbs of the same not being
masters, and they so being assembled to confer among themselves of all
such good means and orders as best may be for the good of their society
and to the only ends and purposes before mentioned; which said
journeymen being so chosen shall take upon them the said office of
Stewardship and shall execute all and singular the following ordinances,
either of them refusing the said office to forfeit 40s.; and the said
Stewards shall be yearly presented on St. Ann's day by six of the elder
and better sort of their Company of journeymen unto the Warden and
Stewards of the said Company of Weavers at such time and place as shall
be by them appointed, there to understand what to them doth pertain as
servants of the said trade of weaving, or by virtue of their composition
or grants made heretofore, or hereafter to be made, etc., all of which
they shall faithfully promise by giving of their hands to perform and
cause to be performed, on pain of 20s.

[Detailed ordinances follow. They require journeymen who are strangers
to produce a certificate of apprenticeship and testimony of good
behaviour, and to pay on admission 8d. to the fellowship of journeymen.
Other journeymen are to pay 4d. on admission, and all are to pay 1d. per
quarter "to the relief of the poorer sort of the said fellowship."
Journeymen embezzling yarn are to be expelled, and those absent from the
election of new stewards are to be fined 3s. 4d. The company of
journeymen shall do nothing prejudicial "towards the Warden and his
Company ... of the said art ... of weavers, either by raising ... their
wages or otherwise."]


15. A PETITION OF WEAVERS WHO ARE NOT BURGESSES [_Nottingham Records,
Vol. IV, pp. 274-5_], 1604-5.

To the worshipful master mayor and his brethren.

Be it known, Right Worshipful, that we be a certain number of poor
weavers who do use our trade within this town of Nottingham, thereby to
maintain ourselves our wives and children, according to the laws of God
and the King's Majesty's laws. It is not unknown unto your worship how
the burgess weavers have sought, and at this present do seek, to put us
down from working, thereby to work the utter undoing of us and of our
poor families. We humbly do entreat your Worships' favours with equity
to consider of our poor estates, who do not offend them nor work within
their freedom or composition, if they have any. Your Worships may
understand they do trouble us more of malice than for any hindrance they
receive by us, for that we see men of other trades, both in this
corporation and others, not being burgesses, yet work in manner as we
do, unmolested or troubled. Therefore we beseech your Worships that we
may have liberty to use our trades for the maintenance of ourselves, our
wives, and children, and if there be anything due either to Master Mayor
or any of his Worships' officers we are ready to discharge it; but as
for the weavers, we know no reason or authority they have to claim
anything of us, neither do we find ourselves able to bear so heavy a
burden as they would lay upon us.


16. EXTRACTS FROM THE LONDON CLOTHWORKERS' COURT BOOK [_Unwin,
Industrial Organization in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries, pp.
229-234_], 1537-1627.

July 13, 1 Mary. All the company had warning to keep their servants from
unlawful assemblies and that they have no talk of the council's matters
as they will answer at their uttermost perils.

January 16, 1-2 Mary. The wardens of the yeomanry brought into the hall
a new chest with iii locks and iii keys to serve to put their money in,
wherein was by them put in ready money xiiijl. vis. xid., the Mr. of the
Company having one key, the upper warden of the yeomanry another key,
and one of the assistants of the yeomanry to have the third key.

Also it was agreed that the said Wardens of the Yeomanry shall have such
orders as hath been here taken, concerning such articles as they ought
amongst themselves to observe, to be entered in their book to the intent
they may better keep them.

July 13, 2 Mary. It is agreed that from henceforth all such apprentices
as shall come out of their years, being of the handicraft, shall before
they be sworn be tried and seen by the Wardens of the Yeomanry, whether
they be workmen able to serve in the common weal or not.

       *       *       *       *       *

November 29, 1567. This day the whole company of the handicraftsmen were
warned to be here according to the order taken by the last court day,
and these articles following were read unto them, and they all with one
voice consented to every of the said articles, and made humble request
with willing hearts as they professed that these said orders may be
forthwith put in execution with diligence, affirming the same orders to
be profitable to them all.

Item that there shall be eight or ten persons elected and chosen by the
wardens and assistants to have the view of all the merchants' cloths
hereafter to be wrought within the company, and that no person of this
company to fold, take, or press or to deliver to the owner any
merchant's cloth before the same cloth be viewed and seen by two of the
said persons so appointed. And the said cloths so by them seen and found
truly wrought, that is to say rowed, barbed, first-coursed and shorn
from the one end to the other according to the statute last made, they
to set the common seal of the house to every such cloth in token of
true workmanship done upon the same. And every such cloth as shall be by
the said searchers or any of them found faulty in workmanship, or that
shall be folded, tacked, pressed, or delivered to the owner before it be
viewed and sealed in form aforesaid, every workman of such cloth or
cloths to pay for a fine of every such cloth xxs. ...

       *       *       *       *       *

December 6, 1591. This day also at the earnest suit and request and upon
the full agreement of those of the assistants and livery of the Company
being of the handicraft, the Wardens of the Yeomanry, their assistants
and xxiiij more of the said yeomanry, it was by this Court fully ordered
and agreed that there shall be four of the said yeomanry appointed to be
sealers to seal all such woollen cloth as the merchants or any of them
shall appoint and deliver to any of this company to be dressed to the
intent to be transported over sea, etc. ... and that every clothworker
shall send for the sealers when his cloth is ready.

January 16, 1610-11. The humble suit of your worships servants of the
yeomanry.

First, we entreat your worship that the upper Warden of the Yeomanry's
account may be yearly audited according to an old custom carefully
provided for by your worships predecessors, (that is to say) by two from
your worships Court of Assistants and two of our Ancients of the
yeomanry.

Secondly, we humbly entreat your worship that the remainder of the
quarterage, your worships' officers being paid, may remain in the
yeomanry's chest according to an old custom, our worshipful Master of
this Company for the time being to keep one key, the upper Wardens of
the Yeomanry to keep another key, and one of the Ancients of the
Assistants of the Yeomanry to keep the third key.

Thirdly, we desire of your worship that the upper warden of the yeomanry
may have one of his Ancients last being in his place to sit by him and
assist him in his accompts and to show him wherein the Company is
wronged.

Fourthly, we desire that when we shall find our officer of the yeomanry
to be slack and remiss in doing of his duty in his service which he
ought to do for the good of the Company, and the same duly proved
against him, that we of the yeomanry may have full authority to dismiss
him at our own discretion, but not without the consent of the Master
and Wardens and Assistants of this Company for the time being first had
and obtained in that behalf.

These Petitions and requests of the yeomanry were granted and agreed
upon by the Master, Wardens and Assistants present at the said court
holden the said sixteenth day of January 1610 aforesaid.

       *       *       *       *       *

June 13, 1627. Whereas ... Suit was commenced in Court of King's Bench
at Westminster by the Wardens of Yeomanry in the name of Master and
Wardens against divers Merchant Adventurers upon viii Elizabeth, which
yet dependeth in the said court undetermined, and the said Wardens of
Yeomanry considering that the proceedings in like suits formerly
commenced have been stopped by some special command of the King and
State upon the solicitation of the said Merchant Adventurers being
strong in purse and friends, have bethought themselves of a way or mean
to prevent the said Merchant Adventurers from the like, and to that
purpose have dealt with a Gentleman named Mr. George Kirke of the King's
Majesty's Bedchamber, very gracious with his Majesty, who for a fourth
part of this moiety of all penalties, forfeitures which shall be
obtained or gotten upon any recovery to be had against any of the said
Merchant Adventurers upon any action or suit brought or to be brought,
sued, commenced, etc., hath undertaken to do his best and to use all the
credit and means he can to his Majesty that there be no stop or stay in
course of law for the solicitation or procurement of the said Merchant
Adventurers in suits already brought or to be brought.

   [The Wardens of Yeomanry ask that the Court may record the
   agreement.]


17. THE FELTMAKERS' JOINT-STOCK PROJECT[271] [_Cotton MSS. Titus B.V.
117_], _c._ 1611.

The state of the Feltmakers' Case, with some propositions on their part
to remedy the mischiefs they now are constrained to endure.

The feltmakers were by decrees in Star Chamber united to the Company of
the Haberdashers, London, and did sit with them in their hall for
government of the trade, till they, finding themselves rather oppressed
by them than any way cherished or abuses reformed, thereupon by suit
obtained a charter from his Majesty by which they were incorporated a
body of themselves by the name of Master, Wardens and Commonalty of the
Art and Mystery of Feltmakers of London and 4 miles compass.

Hereupon by allowance of the Lord Mayor they published their charter,
took them a hall, and accordingly did and do govern their company.
Afterwards considering that they were a trade and company of themselves
by whom many thousands do live besides their company, namely, the hat
trimmers, band makers, hat dyers and hat sellers, which are the
haberdashers, and yet nevertheless they were extremely kept under by the
haberdashers engrossing the commodity of wools brought in merely for
their trade of hatmaking and for no other use, and by that means having
both the means of the feltmakers' trade (for wool) and the means of
their maintenance (for buying their wares being made) all in their
power, by which the feltmakers in general (except some few in
particular) do find themselves much wronged, and by means of it and
their daily threats did fear the overthrow of their trade: whereupon the
generality petitioning to the company of the hard case they lived in,
notwithstanding their extreme sore labour, besought them to provide some
means for their relief and prevention of what might ensue. The company
then by means made them a stock to buy the wools imported for the
company at the best hand; but being opposed by the haberdashers, the
prices by that means were enhanced, and yet the sale of their wares made
kept in bondage as before, whereby many of their trade have been
impoverished, many forced to leave their trade, and many to forsake the
city, by which means all that now live of feltmaking as pickers,
carders, trimmers, bandmakers, dyers and hatsellers are much hindered,
the trade being drawn into the country.

Hereupon the company became (as often before) humble suitors for their
freedom, which by opposition of the Company of Haberdashers and their
false suggestions to the court, they could not obtain--howbeit a
Committee of Aldermen have certified it to be fit--neither are suffered
to have liberty to search for the abuses of their trade under warrant
from the Lord Mayor, which formerly they have often done; besides,
their shops threatened to be shut up, notwithstanding their inhabiting
of the city many years.

Now the company seeing the extreme malice of the haberdashers, and that
the sale of their wares lieth solely in them, whereby many are forced to
hawk their hats made contrary to the statutes, and sell at far less
rates than they can truly afford them, only to buy victual, whereby if
some redress be not had many will be undone or forced to go into the
country, to the great damage of the trade in general and overthrow of
the corporation which they much desire to support: they have considered
to raise them a stock to take in all men's wares when they be made, to
avoid hawking, and to encourage men to follow their trade and continue
within the corporation, for the benefit of all parties, the city, the
trade and company, and all that trim and sell hats and live by that
trade, without desire of enhancing the price of anything or damage to
any man.

The stock they purpose to be 25,000l., to be resident in some convenient
place of the suburbs, where men may take notice to have money for their
wares if they will bring them, being made good and at such rates as they
may well be afforded, by judgment of sworn men of the trade, who shall
rate them both inward and outward, so as the poor shall sell much better
than they have done the other sort, howbeit they sell cheaper by 2s. in
the pound than for the most part they have done; yet having a certain
market and ready money to buy wool again; and, in that then they shall
be in no hazard of loss by trusting, as now they do, their gain will be
much more.

1. The corporation will flourish.

2. Felts will be better made in that every man shall have price for his
ware as his workmanship is.

3. The trade, being much used in the country, will revert into the city,
to the benefit of the city and all that live by the trade.

4. The haberdasher shall buy good wares more generally than now and at
as cheap rates as he now usually buyeth (the times of the year and
prices of wool considered), and be sorted with much more ease and
content than now he is.

5. The haberdasher of mean estate shall be in much better case than
now, for that every man shall have good wares without culling according
to their sorts.

6. The commonwealth shall be better served in that now they shall have
good wares for their money.

7. The stock cannot but be gainful to the stockers, in that the hats,
according to their goodness, shall come in at 2s. in the pound profit
upon the sale, merely out of the feltmaker's labour, who is equally
benefited by the certain stock. Besides, the often return of the stock
at 2s. in the pound cannot but give content to the stockers.

8. The stock shall be sufficiently secured were it never so much, in
that they shall deliver no money without a sufficient value of wares.
Their sale will be certain in that without buying the haberdashers
cannot uphold their trade. Besides, no man shall have benefit of the
stock except he will bring all the ware he makes to it (except it be a
hat or two specially made, and that with the privilege of the stockers).
Besides, if at any time the stock shall be full of ware and want money,
the company by a general consent can forbear bringing in or slack their
making for a time. But so it is that once in a year all felts will off,
of what nature soever.

9. The wares being of necessity to be bought, the stockers will need not
trust except they will but upon good security, which will make men more
wary in buying.

[Footnote 271: Unwin, _Industrial Organization in the Sixteenth and
Seventeenth Centuries_, pp. 240-42,]


18. THE CASE OF THE TAILORS OF IPSWICH[272] [_Coke's Reports, Part XI,
pp. 53-55_], 1615.

Trin. II, Jac. Reg. King's Bench.

[The Master, Wardens, and Community of the Tailors and Workers of cloth
of the town of Ipswich in the County of Suffolk brought an action for
13l. 13s. 4d. against William Sheninge. They allege

(i) that by the letters patent incorporating them they had power to make
reasonable rules and ordinances and to impose fines for breach of them;

(ii) that they had made a rule that no person occupying any of the said
trades in Ipswich should keep any shop or chamber, or exercise the said
faculties, or any of them, or take an apprentice or journeyman, till he
should present himself to the Master and Wardens of the said society,
should prove that he had served an apprenticeship, and should be
admitted as a sufficient workman, on pain of 5 marks fine;

(iii) that in accordance with 19 Hen. vii., cap. 7, they had submitted
these rules to the justices of assize, who had allowed them;

(iv) that William Sheninge had worked 20 days as a tailor without
complying.

The defendant pleaded he was an apprentice by the space of 7 years, that
he had been retained as domestic servant for a year and that as such he
made garments for him, his wife, and children, which is the same use and
exercise wherein the plaintiffs demur.]

And in this case upon argument at the Bar and Bench, divers points were
resolved--

1. That at the Common Law no man could be prohibited from working in any
lawful trade, for the law abhors idleness ... and especially in young
men, who ought in their youth ... to learn lawful trades and sciences
which are profitable to the common weal.... And therefore the law abhors
all monopolies, which prohibit any from working in any lawful trade. And
that appears in 2 H. 5, 56. A dyer was bound that he should not use the
dyers' craft for 2 years, and there Hull holds that the bond was against
the common law, and by God if the plaintiff was here he should go to
prison till he paid a fine to the king; so for the same reason, if an
husbandman is bound that he shall not sow his land, the bond is against
the common law.... And if he who undertakes upon him to work is
unskilful, his ignorance is a sufficient punishment to him ... and if
any one takes him to work and spoils it, an action on the case lies
against him. And the Statute of 5 Eliz. 4, which prohibits every person
from using or exercising any craft, mystery, or occupation unless he has
been an apprentice by the space of 7 years was not enacted only to the
intent that workmen should be skilful, but also that youth should not be
nourished in idleness, but brought up and educated in lawful sciences
and trades: and therefore it appears that without an Act of Parliament
none can be prohibited from working in any lawful trade. Also the common
law doth not prohibit any person from using several Arts or mysteries at
his pleasure....

2. That the said Restraint of the defendant for more than the said Act
of 5 Eliz. has made was against law, and therefore for as much as the
Statute has not restrained him who has served as an apprentice for
seven years from exercising the trade of a tailor, the said ordinance
can't prohibit him from exercising his trade till he has presented
himself before them, or till they allow him to be a workman; for these
are against the liberty and freedom of the subject, and are a means of
extortion in drawing money from them, either by delay or some other
subtil device or by oppression of young Tradesmen by the old and rich of
the same Trade, not permitting them to work in their trade freely; and
all this is against the Common Law and the commonwealth. But ordinances
for the good order and government of men of Trades and Mysteries are
good, but not to restrain any one in his lawful mystery.

3. It was resolved that the said branch of the Act of 5 Eliz. is
intended of a public use and exercise of a trade to all who will come,
and not of him who is a private cook, tailor, brewer, baker, etc., in
the house of any for the use of a family, and therefore the said
ordinance had been good and consonant to law. Such a private exercise
and use had not been within it, for every one may work in such a private
manner, although he has never been an apprentice in the trade.

4. It was resolved that the Statute of 19 H. 7, cap. 7, doth not
corroborate any of the ordinances made by any corporation, which are so
allowed and approved as the Statute speaks, but leaves them to be
affirmed as good, or disaffirmed as unlawful, by the law; the sole
benefit which the corporation obtains by such allowance is that they
shall not incur the penalty of 40l. mentioned in the Act, if they put in
use any ordinances which are against the king's prerogative, or the
common profit of the people.

Judgment for defendant.

[Footnote 272: This case is important as an illustration of the attitude
of the Common Law Courts towards rules made in restraint of trade. See
below, section III of this Part, Nos. 17 and 24.]


19. THE GRIEVANCES OF THE JOURNEYMEN WEAVERS OF LONDON [_Gildhall
Library. The case of the Commonalty of the Corporation of Weavers of
London truly stated_],[273] _c._ 1649.

Humbly presented to the consideration of the honourable House of
Commons.

All legal jurisdictions over a number of people or society of men must
either be primitive or derivative. Now primitive jurisdiction is
undoubtedly in the whole body, and not in one or more members, all men
being by nature equal to other; and all jurisdictive power over them,
being founded by a compact and agreement with them, is invested in one
or more persons, who represent the whole, and by the consent of the
whole are empowered to govern by such rules of equality towards all, so
that both governor and governed may know certainly what the one may
command and what the other must obey; without the performance of which
mutual contract all obligations are cancelled, and that jurisdictive
power returns unto its first spring (the people) from whence it was
conveyed.

And doubtless whatever power our Governors of the Corporation of Weavers
may pretend and plead for, if they had any rationally, they had it at
first from the whole body, as it stands incorporated into a civil
society of men walking by such rules, established for the preservation
of the trade, advancement and encouragement of the profession thereof.

And if it be objected that they had a charter granted them by the King,
wherein they are invested that power they challenge, we answer that
there is not any one liberty that is granted to them but that is also
granted to the meanest member of the said company. The words of the
charter are these:--

[Here follows a copy of the charter granted by King Henry II to the
Weavers of London.]

So that it is clear that this grant was not to so many particular men,
but to the whole society; and what power soever any person or persons
were afterwards invested withall must of necessity be by the consent,
election, and approbation of the whole body; and if our Egyptian
taskmasters have any further commission for their usurped power over us,
why do they not produce it? Certainly, if they could, they would. But
having none they plead custom and precedents, both which they will find
but broken reeds to lean upon, but rotten props to support their
worm-eaten sovereignty.

1. For first, there must be these two things to make a custom valid: (i)
Usage; (ii) Time. Yet that time must be such whereof there is no memory
of man, and the usage must be peaceable, without interruption. But both
these are wanting to strengthen their claim to their pretended power
over us.

2. Suppose there were a custom, and that it had been time out of mind
also, yet if long usurpations of power could make the exercise thereof
legal, the very foundation of just government were subverted.

3. No custom against an Act of Parliament is valid in law. But the
custom claimed by our governors is against the very fundamental
constitutions both of all civil societies and of several Acts of
Parliament, which ordain that all elections shall be free, chiefly 3 of
Ed. I, chap. 5, by virtue of which the people choose all their officers
and magistrates in the several parishes and precincts in this kingdom.
And if it be according to law in the major, the commonwealth, it must
consequently hold in the minor, a particular corporation or civil
society of men, as we are, etc.

4. But customs are only valid when reasonable.... Now nothing in the
world can be more unreasonable than that such a number of men as 16
should have liberty to exercise a power over as many thousands, without,
nay against, their wills, consent, or election ..., the challenge and
exercise of such a power over a people being the perfectest badge of
slavery that men can be subjected to.

But we shall proceed in a discovery of those oppressions and abuses
which we complain so much against in our governors.

1st Charge. They have admitted aliens to be members for sums of money,
contrary to the statutes of the realm, orders of the Lord Mayor and
Court of Aldermen, customs of the city, and ordinances of the
company.... They have brought in by their own confession three hundred
and twelve strangers to be masters of the said company, and have taken
for their admittance 5l. a man, which amounted to 1,560l., or
thereabouts.... They object that the strangers admitted are broad
weavers and deal not in the commodities that we trade in, viz., ribbon,
lace, etc.

The objection is false; for most of us can, and many of us have wrought,
as good broad stuffs as are nowadays made, and would do still, were it
not for the vast number of strangers (which have engrossed the
trade).... And if it be demanded how or by what means they got the trade
into their hands, we answer that at the beginning of the war many of us
and our servants engaged for the Parliament, and, in our absence, they,
being generally malignant, staying at home, and keeping servants all of
their own country, never employing any English, as they by law ought, by
degrees got all the trading, so that now the war is ended, and we
returned to follow our callings, we can get no employment. By which
means many hundreds have been forced to leave the trade, as to be
porters, labourers, water-bearers, etc., and many forced to take relief
from the several parishes wherein they dwell....

2nd Charge. They have admitted natives to weave and set up weaving in
their gild, without serving seven years, contrary to the statutes,
orders and customs aforesaid, as hath been proved by several witnesses
before the Committee of the honourable House.

3rd Charge. They exact extraordinary fees of those persons that they
make free or admit, taking a silver spoon of an ounce and a half weight,
and five shillings and eightpence in money, contrary to the Statute of
22 of Hen. VIII, chap. 4, and 28 of Hen. VIII, chap. 5....

4th Charge. They have deprived the commonalty of their rights in their
first ordinance, which saith the bailiffs are to be chosen by the
bailiffs, wardens, assistants, and commonalty, which ordinance is
grounded upon the Statute of 3rd of Ed. I, chap. 5, which saith
elections ought to be free, etc.

As touching the right of election, sufficient hath been spoken in the
preamble before these charges; only give us leave to insert a few
particulars in answer to their objection.

1. Whereas they object, that the commonalty are represented in the
livery of the said company, we answer:--Legal representatives must be
legally chosen by the persons represented, or else they cannot, or at
least ought not, to be bound by their determinations. But the livery-men
of our company are chosen by the bailiffs and governors, and not by the
commonalty, so may properly be called the governors' representatives and
not ours, we being never called upon to give our voice in their
elections. Neither are they, indeed, elected, but brought in for 5l. a
man. In lieu whereof they are invested with a peculiar privilege above
others, by being empowered to keep more servants than ordinary, by which
means the commonalty is destroyed also....

5th Charge. They have dismissed the yeomanry contrary to six several
orders made with their consent by the Lord Mayor and Court of
Assistants.

But they object that they have not dismissed them, etc. If they had not
dismissed them, what needed so many several orders to be made to the
contrary? But we desire you to take notice that the yeomanry did consist
of sixteen persons which were authorized by the aforesaid six several
orders to search and find out the abuses in trade, viz., intruders that
had not served seven years, and that none but serviceable goods might be
made for the commonwealth. Now, because these governors gain by
intruders, making them pay for their permission, and driving the
greatest trade, making much light and deceitful work, therefore they
have dismissed the said yeomanry, by reason whereof both the said evils
are continued. Besides, the yeomanry by the said orders were to have the
journeymen's quarteridges for their pains, but now being by them
dismissed they gather the quarteridges and share it among themselves.

6th Charge. That they have wasted the treasure and stock of the company
in byways, and have not made that provision for the poor members of the
company as by their trust they ought to have done.

So that what with their feastings, defending vexatious suits contrary to
law, purchasing a monopoly, large fees for councillors, bills,
demurrers, suits against weavers of other companies, etc., they have in
one year out of the company's stock and income (which amounted but to
791l. 5s. 5d.) spent 566l. 19s. 8d., which year's account agrees with
their disbursements other years also; and for 200l. given by one Mr.
Ralph Hamon to purchase land for the poor, they have purchased none to
this day, but have shared the money among themselves....

The premises considered, and all other circumstances duly weighed, our
desires for the freedom of elections being both legal and rational, our
sufferings and abuses under usurping pretended governors so abusive and
offensive, our wants so great, company so numerous, trading so little,
and that too devoured by strangers, ... we therefore hope that all these
things put together will be of such weight with all conscientious, godly
men in this honourable House of Commons, as that we shall not need to
fear your willing assistance for the redressing of these great evils and
granting our just desires. The speedy performance whereof will not only
gain unto you the prayers of many thousand persons who are ready to
perish for want of trading, but also engage them, as heretofore, so for
the future, to stand by you in your greatest necessities, for the
strengthening your hands in the execution of justice and judgment, and
redress of the oppressions of the nation.

[Footnote 273: Part of this document is quoted by Unwin, _Industrial
Organization in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries_, pp. 205-6.]



SECTION III

THE REGULATION OF INDUSTRY BY THE STATE

   1. Proposals for the Regulation of the Cloth Manufacture (_temp_
   Henry VIII)--2. Administrative Difficulties in the Regulation of the
   Manufacture of Cloth, 1537--3. An Act Touching Weavers, 1555--4.
   Enactment of Common Council of London as to Age of Ending
   Apprenticeship, 1556--5. William Cecil's Industrial Programme,
   1559--6. The Statute of Artificers, 1563--7. Proposals for the Better
   Administration of the Statute of Artificers, 1572--8. Draft of a Bill
   Fixing Minimum Rates for Spinners and Weavers, 1593--9. Draft
   Piece-list Submitted for Ratification to the Wiltshire Justices by
   Clothiers and Weavers, 1602--10. An Act Empowering Justices to fix
   Minimum Rates of Payment, 1603-04--11. Administration of Acts
   Regulating the Manufacture of Cloth, 1603--12. Assessment made by the
   Justices of Wiltshire, dealing mainly with other than Textile
   Workers, 1604--13. Assessment made by the Justices of Wiltshire
   dealing mainly with Textile Workers, 1605--14. Administration of Wage
   Clauses of Statute of Artificers, 1605-08--15. Administration of
   Apprenticeship Clause of the Statute of Artificers, 1607-08--16. The
   Organisation of the Woollen Industry, 1615--17. Proceedings on the
   Apprenticeship Clauses of the Statute of Artificers, 1615--18. A
   Petition to Fix Wages Addressed to the Justices by the Textile
   Workers of Wiltshire, 1623--19. Appointment by Privy Council of
   Commissioners to Investigate Grievances of Textile Workers in East
   Anglia, 1630--20. Report to Privy Council of Commissioners appointed
   above, 1630--21. High Wages in the New World, 1645--22. Young Men and
   Maids Ordered to Enter Service, 1655--23. Request to Justices of
   Grand Jury of Worcestershire to Assess Wages, 1661--24. Proceedings
   on the Apprenticeship Clauses of the Statute of Artificers, 1669.


The documents in this section illustrate the regulation of industrial
relationships by the government of the Tudors and of the first two
Stuarts. The principal aims of their policy were to check the movement
of the textile industries from the town to country districts (Nos. 3 and
6), to prevent the concentration of industry in the hands of capitalists
(Nos. 3 and 11), or the creation of a necessitous proletariat (No. 4),
to exercise a police supervision over the movement of labour (Nos. 6, 7
and 14), to maintain the quality of English goods (No. 2), to prevent
class encroaching on class (Nos. 5 and 6) either through the wage earner
demanding excessive wages (No. 5) or through the employer beating them
down unduly (Nos. 8, 10, 19, 20), in short to crystallize existing
relationships with such changes only as the economic developments of
recent years, particularly the fall in the value of money (No. 6), and
the spread of the textile industries into rural districts (No. 3) made
inevitable.

The system was developed in numerous Acts, of which the most important
are given below (Nos. 3, 6 and 10). The most comprehensive measure was
the Statute of Artificers of 1563 (No. 6). There was little original in
this Act. Just as the Statutes forbidding depopulation (Part II, section
I) really only developed manorial customaries into a national system,
and the Poor Law Statutes (Part II, section IV) were based on the
experiments of municipal authorities, so the Statute of Artificers was
based partly on the practices of gilds (Part II, section II), partly on
the mediæval Statutes of Labourers (see Part I, section VI, Nos.
12--19). Indeed, Cecil's original proposal (No. 5) seems to have been to
re-enact 12 Richard II, cap. 3, which the rise in prices had made out of
date. If seriously entertained, this idea must have been discarded. The
most important innovation introduced by the statute in its final form
was the substitution of a system of industrial regulation applying to
almost the whole country for regulations applying to particular
localities and particular trades.

The most important parts of the Statute of Artificers were those
relating to apprenticeship and to the assessment of wages. The former,
if we may judge by the proceedings of the County Justices (Nos. 11 & 15)
and of municipal authorities (Part II, section II, Nos. 9, 10, 11, 15),
seem to have been administered with considerable strictness, which was
only to be expected in view of the interest which gilds, boroughs,
traders and craftsmen generally had in seeing that they were carried
out. Judicial interpretations seem, however, to have begun at an early
date to whittle them away to some extent (No. 17), for the Judges
disliked rules "in restraint of trade" (No. 24 and section II, No. 18).

The wage clauses of the Statute present a more difficult problem. There
is no doubt that their object was to fix a maximum (not a minimum) wage
for agricultural labour (Nos. 6 and 14), which, however, should move
with movements in prices. This policy was not so oppressive as it
appears to us, because of the wide distribution of landed property, the
consequent fact that comparatively few rural workers depended entirely
upon wages for their living, and the relatively small difference between
the social position of the small farmer or master craftsman and the
hired persons whom they employed. In a colony like Massachusetts, where
the policy of fixing maximum wages was adopted, its motive was seen in
the simplest form (No. 21). Even in England, however, the same motives
were at work to a less degree (Nos. 5, 22 and 23). The policy of fixing
a maximum wage was, in fact, on a par with that of fixing prices, and
probably popular with the small masters and small landholders, who
formed a large proportion of the urban and rural population. It did not
come to an end with the destruction of the absolute monarchy, but
continued, with fair regularity, down to 1688, and, after that, with
much less regularity, at any rate to 1762.

The regulation of wages did not, however, only aim at fixing a maximum.
It also aimed on some, perhaps rare, occasions at fixing a minimum, at
any rate for workers in the textile industries. These latter were
treated in a special way, because the development of capitalism in the
textile industries (Nos. 2, 3, 8, 16 and 19) had created a wage problem
of a modern kind, at any rate in the south and east of England, such as
did not yet exist in agriculture. Municipal authorities had in the past
fixed minimum rates for textile workers (section II, No. 5). In 1593
four Bills were drafted which proposed to do the same by legislation, of
which one is printed below (No. 8), and in 1603-04 an Act (No. 10) was
passed to this effect. Two examples of the establishment of minimum
rates are given from the proceedings of the Wiltshire Quarter Sessions,
in 1602 and 1623. In the former case (No. 9) a piece list was drafted by
a committee of clothiers and weavers, which was subsequently issued
without alteration by the Justices (No. 13). In the latter case (No. 18)
the textile workers of Wiltshire asked the Justices to enforce the
assessment of wages on their employers, and the Justices complied by
ordering the rates to be published at Devizes. This shows that the
regulation of wages did in some cases protect the workers. Naturally,
however, the Justices required stimulating in this part of their duties,
and during the period of Charles I's personal government the Privy
Council intervened to compel them to fix rates, as it did to compel them
to administer the Poor Laws. In 1630 it received a petition from the
textile workers of Suffolk and Essex complaining that their wages had
been reduced, and appointed commissioners to investigate the matter (No.
19), who compelled the employers to raise wages (No. 20). The policy of
fixing _minimum_ rates seems to have come to an end with the fall of the
absolute monarchy in 1640, though it was occasionally revived by
Parliament in the sixteenth century. (Part III, section III, Nos. 3, 4
and 15).


AUTHORITIES

   The more accessible of the modern writers dealing with the subject of
   this section are:--Cunningham, _English Industry and Commerce, Modern
   Times_, Part I; Ashley, _Economic History_, Vol. I, Part II, Chap,
   iii; Unwin, _Industrial Organisation in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth
   Centuries_; Abram, _Social England in the Fifteenth Century_; Dunlop
   and Denman, _English Apprenticeship and Child Labour_; Rogers, _Six
   Centuries of Work and Wages_; Hewins, _English Trade and Finance in
   the Seventeenth Century_; Schanz, _Englische Handelspolitik Gegen
   Ende des Mittelalters_; Tawney in _Die Vierteljahrschrift für Sozial
   und Wirtschaftsgeschichte_, Band XI and XII, Heft 8 and 9;
   Macarthur, in E.H.R., Vols. IX, XIII and XV; Hewins in _Economic
   Journal_, Vol. VIII; Hutchins, _ibid._, Vol. X.

   Bibliographies are given by Cunningham, _op. cit._, pp. 943-998;
   Unwin, _op. cit._, pp. 263-270; Ashley, _op. cit._, pp. 190-1, 243-8;
   Abram, _op. cit._, pp. 229-238; Dunlop & Denman, _op. cit._, pp.
   355-63; the student may also consult the following:--

   (1) _Documentary authorities_, 1485-1660:--The most important printed
   sources of information for the administration of the industrial
   legislation of the 16th century are Town Records (see bibliographies,
   especially those of Unwin and of Dunlop & Denman), and the
   Proceedings of the County Justices contained in the following
   works:--Hamilton, Devonshire Quarter Sessions from Queen Elizabeth to
   Queen Anne; Atkinson, Quarter Session Records of the North Riding of
   Yorkshire; Willis Bund, Worcester County Records, division I; Cox,
   Three Centuries of Derbyshire Annals; Hardy, Hertford Quarter Session
   Records; Hardy & Page, Bedfordshire County Quarter Sessions; volumes
   published by the Historical MSS. Commission, especially Vol. I;
   Victoria County History, _passim_.

   (2) _Literary authorities._--The law is explained by numerous writers
   of legal text books, _e.g._, Fitzherbert, The Book Belonging to a
   Justice of the Peace; Lambard, Eirenarcha; Sheppard, Whole Office of
   the County Justice of the Peace. Cases before the courts concerning
   apprenticeship are quoted in the Reports of Coke and Croke.
   Sidelights on contemporary opinion may be obtained from Rotuli
   Parliamentorum III, 269, 330, 352; IV, 330-331, 352; V, 110; More,
   Utopia; Starkey, A Dialogue between Cardinal Pole and Thomas Lupset
   (Early English Text Society, England in the Reign of King Henry
   VIII); Forest, The Pleasant Poesy of Princely Practice (_ibid._); The
   Commonweal of this Realm of England (edited by E.R. Lamond); King
   Edward's Remains, a Discourse about the Reformation of many abuses
   (printed in Burnet's History of the Reformation); Winthrop's Journal;
   Petty, A Treatise of Taxes and Contributions, Chapter I, Section 4.


1. PROPOSALS FOR THE REGULATION OF THE CLOTH MANUFACTURE[274] [_Brit.
Mus. Cotton MSS., Titus B. I, fol. 189_], _temp._ Hen. VIII.

Articles to be certified to my lord privy seal according to his letter
for the complaint of the weavers in the seven hundreds in the country of
Kent.

First, that no clothier, that hath not had exercise in his youth by the
space of two years at the least in the craft of weaving, use or have in
his house or at his commandment any loom.

Item, that no clothier weaver using to make coloured clothes shall use,
have, or occupy in his house or at his assignment any more than one
loom.

Item, that if the cloth-maker have cause to complain upon the weaver for
not duly and truly working of their clothes or the weaver cause to
complain upon the clothier for not paying him his duty for the said
weaving, that then the party grieved shall complain to the next justice
of peace, and he shall assign one indifferent weaver and one indifferent
clothier to examine the cause of variance and to assess what amends the
party grieved shall have. And the party to stand and abide the order so
made.

Item, where it is ordered by the statute of anno 4 E. 4 _capitulo
primo_, that the clothier shall pay ready money to the weavers and
spinners and other their artificers, that the said statute shall be put
in due execution.

Item, if any clothier, tailor, cordwainer or other artificer, by what
name or names soever he or they be called, that hereafter shall fortune
to come out of any shire other than out of the said shire of Kent into
any of the 7 hundreds there to seek service and to have work, that then
he or they that will or shall happen to take him or them into his or
their service or services, shall before one of the justices of the peace
be bound unto the king by way of recognisance in such sum as by the
discretion of the said justice shall be appointed; that the said person
so by him taken into service shall be of good behaviour during the time
that he shall be in his service, and that the said justice be not
compellable to certify the same recognisance, unless the same
recognisance be forfeited. And this to be done from time to time, as
often as the justice of the peace shall think convenient. And if any man
retain any man in his service without putting in surety, as is above
said, that then the justice of the peace to have authority to commit
such person or persons to ward, there to remain by his discretion.

  EDWARD WOTTON.
  THOMAS WYLFFORD.

[Footnote 274: Quoted Schanz, Vol. II, pp. 660-1.]


2. ADMINISTRATIVE DIFFICULTIES IN THE REGULATION OF THE MANUFACTURE OF
CLOTH[275] [_Brit. Mus. Cotton MSS. Titus B. V, fol. 187_], 1537.

Before my right hearty commendations to your good lordship. It may
please the same to understand, that divers of the clothmakers in these
parts have been with me, declaring unto me, that in case they shall be
compelled to make cloth from Michaelmas forwards according to the king's
act, it shall cause them and other of their occupation to cease and
forbear clothmaking, saying, that it is impossible to keep the breadth
of the cloth limited by the act, and also that the weavers, being very
poor men, have not nor be able to provide looms and sleys to weave
clothes according to the act. Whereunto I answered them, that there is
much slander in outward parts for false clothmaking, and for remedy
thereof this act was provided; and or ever the act was made, there were
divers clothmakers spoken with, who affirmed, that it was reasonable;
wherefore I told them that I thought that they did rather seek occasion
to continue still false clothmaking, than put their good endeavour to
make true cloth according to the act; and also I shewed to them, that
the King's Highness had suspended the same act by a long time by his
proclamation, to the intent that they might provide looms and other
necessaries for the making of true cloth according to the act, wherefore
I marvelled much that they had been so negligent in the provision
thereof, declaring unto them, that I thought that the King's Highness
would not defer the execution of the act any longer; which it seemed to
me they lamented very sorely, saying that they would leave their
occupying for the time; for they could not by no possible means make
cloth according to the act, and specially for their breadth; and I bade
them take heed and beware, for I thought, they might perform the act, if
they had good will and good zeal to the common weal; and if they by
obstinacy or wilfulness would leave clothmaking, whereby percase might
grow murmur and sedition among the people for lack of work, that then it
would be laid to their charges, to their perils and utter undoings.
Whereunto they said obediently, that they would do that lay in their
possible powers, but more they could not, beseeching me, that I would
be a means to the King's Highness once again to suspend the act, which I
would not promise them to do, and so left them for this time in despair
of this matter; and so now advertise your good lordship thereof, to the
intent that, if it seem by your wisdom convenient, ye may move the
King's Majesty hereof to the intent, his Grace's pleasure may be known,
whether his Highness of his goodness would yet suspend the act for one
other year, which in my poor opinion, if so may stand with his Grace's
pleasure, shall not be much amiss, beseeching your good lordship, that I
may be advertised hereof as soon as you conveniently may; for Michaelmas
is the last day of the old proclamation for this matter; and thus fare
your good lordship as heartily well as I would myself. Written at
Terlyng the 23rd day of September.

  Your[s] assuredly to his
  preservation (?)

  THOMAS AUDELEY,
  lord chancellor.

[Footnote 275: Schanz, Vol. II, pp. 662-3.]


3. AN ACT TOUCHING WEAVERS[276] [_2 & 3 Phil. & Mary, c. xi. Statutes of
the Realm, Vol. IV, Part I, p. 286-87_], 1555.

Forasmuch as the weavers of this realm have, as well at this present
parliament as at divers other times, complained that the rich and
wealthy clothiers do many ways oppress them, some by setting up and
keeping in their houses divers looms, and keeping and maintaining them
by journeymen and persons unskilful, to the decay of a great number of
artificers which were brought up in the said science of weaving, their
family and household, some by ingrossing of looms into their hands and
possession, and letting them out at such unreasonable rents as the poor
artificers are not able to maintain themselves, much less their wives,
family and children, some also by giving much less wages and hire for
the weaving and workmanship of [cloth] than in times past they did,
whereby they are enforced utterly to forsake their art and occupation
wherein they have been brought up: It is therefore, for remedy of the
premises, and for the avoiding of a great number of inconveniences which
may grow (if in time it be not foreseen) ordained, established and
enacted, by authority of this present parliament, that no person using
the feat or mistery of clothmaking and dwelling out of a city, borough,
market town or corporate town, shall from the feast of St. Michael the
Archangel now next ensuing, keep, retain or have in his or their house
or possession any more or above one woollen loom at one time, nor shall
by any means directly or indirectly receive or take any manner profit,
gain or commodity by letting or setting any loom, or any house wherein
any loom is or shall be used and occupied, which shall be together by
him set or let, upon pain of forfeiture for every week that any person
shall do contrary to the tenour and true meaning hereof 20s.

And be it further ordained and enacted by like authority, that no
woollen weaver using or exercising the feat or mistery of weaving, and
dwelling out of city, borough, market town or town corporate, shall
after the said feast have or keep at any time above the number of two
woollen looms, or receive any profit, gain or commodity, directly or
indirectly as is aforesaid, by any more than two looms at one time, upon
pain to forfeit for every week that any person shall offend or do to the
contrary 20s.

And it is further ordained and enacted by like authority, that no person
which shall after the said feast, use, exercise or occupy only the feat
or mistery of a weaver, and not clothmaking, shall during the time that
he shall use the feat or mistery of a weaver, keep or have any tucking
mill, or shall use or exercise the feat or mistery of a [tucker] or
dyer, upon pain to forfeit for every week that he shall so do 20s.

And it is further enacted by like authority, that no person which after
the said feast shall use, exercise or occupy the feat or mistery of a
tucker or fuller, shall during the time that he shall so use the said
feat or mistery, keep or have any loom in his house or possession, or
shall directly or indirectly take any profit or commodity by the same,
upon pain to forfeit for every week 20s.

And it is further ordained and enacted by like authority, that no person
whatsoever, which heretofore hath not used or exercised the feat,
mistery or art of clothmaking, shall after the said feast, make or weave
or cause to be made or woven any kind of broad white woollen cloths, but
only in a city, borough, town corporate or market town, or else in such
place or places where such cloths have been used to be commonly made by
the space of ten years next before the making this act; upon pain of
forfeiture for every cloth otherwise made five pounds.

Provided always and be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid,
that it shall not be lawful to any person or persons being a weaver, or
that doth or shall use the art or mistery of a weaver or weaving,
dwelling out of a city, borough, town corporate or market town, to have
in his and their service any more or above the number of two apprentices
at one time; upon pain to forfeit for every time that he shall offend or
do contrary to this branch or article the sum of ten pounds.

And further be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, that it shall not
be lawful to or for any person or persons to set up the art or mistery
of weaving, after the said feast of St. Michael, unless the same person
or persons so setting up the same art or mistery of weaving, have been
apprentice to the same art or mistery, or exercised the same, by the
space of 7 years at the least; upon pain of twenty pounds to be
forfeited to the King and Queen's Majesties, her Grace's heirs or
successors, the one moiety of all which forfeitures shall be to the King
and Queen's Highnesses, heirs [and] successors, and the other moiety to
him or them that will sue for the same in any court of record by action
of debt, bill, plaint or information, wherein no wager of law, essoigne
or protection shall be admitted or allowed for the defendant.

... Provided always, and be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, that
this act or anything therein contained shall [not] in any way extend or
be prejudicial to any person or persons that doth or shall dwell in the
counties of York, Cumberland, Northumberland or Westmoreland; but that
they and every of them shall and may have and keep looms in their
houses, and do and exercise all and every thing and things for or
concerning spinning, weaving, cloth working and clothmaking in the said
counties, as they or any of them might have done or exercised lawfully
before the making of this statute; anything contained in this statute to
the contrary in any way notwithstanding.

[Footnote 276: This Act suggests that something like a factory system
may have been growing up in the sixteenth century: See Ashley, _Economic
History_, Vol. II, The Woollen Industry.]


4. ENACTMENT OF COMMON COUNCIL OF LONDON AS TO AGE OF ENDING
APPRENTICESHIP[277] [_Arber, Stationers' Records, I, p. xli_],[278]
1556.

For as much as great poverty, penury, and lack of living hath of late
years followed, ... and one of the chiefest occasions thereof, as it is
thought, ... is by reason of the over hasty marriages and over soon
setting up of households of and by the youth and young folks of the said
city [of London], which hath commonly used, and yet do, to marry
themselves as soon as ever they come out of their apprenticehood, be
they ever so young and unskilful, yea, and often times many of them so
poor that they scantily have of their proper goods wherewith to buy
their marriage apparel ... and forasmuch as the chiefest occasion of the
said inconveniences, as it is very evident, is by reason that divers and
sundry apprentices, as well of the said artificers as also of other
citizens of the said city, are commonly bound for so few years that
their terms of apprenticeability expireth and endeth oversoon, and that
they are there upon incontinently made free of the said city; ... for
remedy, stay, and reformation whereof it is ordained ... that no manner
of persons ... shall be any manner of ways or means made free of the
said city ... until such time as he and they shall severally attain to
the age of 24 years.

[Footnote 277: This enactment is interesting as offering a precedent
followed in the Statute of Artificers (No. 6 of this section), and as
showing one of the social reasons for compulsory apprenticeship, which
probably somewhat postponed the age of marriage. (See No. 11 of this
section.)]

[Footnote 278: Quoted Dunlop and Denman, _English Apprenticeship and
Child Labour_, pp. 52-3.]


5. WILLIAM CECIL'S INDUSTRIAL PROGRAMME[279] [_Hist. MSS. Com. MSS. of
the Marquis of Salisbury, Part I, pp. 162-3_], 1559. Considerations
delivered to the Parliament, 1559.

1. _Vagabonds._--That the statute I Edward VI, Chap, viii., concerning
idle persons and vagabonds being made slaves, now repealed, be revived
with additions.

2. _Labourers and Servants._--That the Statutes 12 Richard II, Chap.
iii, "that no servant or labourer at the end of this term depart out of
the hundred or place where he dwells," etc., and 13 Richard II, Chap.
viii., ordering the Justices at every session to appoint by proclamation
the wages of workers, etc., be confirmed with the addition "that no man
hereafter receive into service any servant without a testimonial from
the master he last dwelt with, sealed with a Parish Seal kept by the
constable or churchwarden, witnessing he left with the free license of
his master, penalty £10." So, by the hands of the masters, servants may
be reduced to obedience, which shall reduce obedience to the Prince and
to God also; by the looseness of the time no other remedy is left but by
awe of law to acquaint men with virtue again, whereby the Reformation of
religion may be brought in credit, with the amendment of manners, the
want whereof has been imputed as a thing grown by the liberty of the
Gospel, etc.

3. _Husbandry._--That the Statutes, 4 Hen VII, Chap. 9, "for re-edifying
houses of husbandry, and to avoid the decay of towns and villages," and
5 Edward VI, Chap. 5, "for maintenance of husbandry and tillage," be put
in execution.

4. _Purchase of Lands._--No husbandman, yeoman or artificer to purchase
above 5l. by the year of inheritance, save in cities, towns and
boroughs, for their better repair; one mansion house only to be
purchased over and above the said yearly value. The common purchasing
thereof is the ground of dearth of victuals, raising of rents, etc.

5. _Merchants._--No merchant to purchase above £50 a year of
inheritance, except aldermen and sheriffs of London, who, because they
approach to the degree of knighthood, may purchase to the value of £200.

6. _Apprentices._--None to be received apprentice except his father may
spend 40s. a year of freehold, nor to be apprenticed to a merchant
except his father spend £10 a year of freehold, or be descended from a
gentleman a merchant. Through the idleness of these professions so many
embrace them that they are only a cloak for vagabonds and thieves, and
there is such a decay of husbandry that masters cannot get skilful
servants to till the ground without unreasonable wages, etc....

[Footnote 279: Compare this with the following document (No. 6). It will
be observed that Cecil's proposals as to wages are more drastic than the
actual provision of the Statute of Artificers.]


6. AN ACT TOUCHING DIVERS ORDERS FOR ARTIFICERS, LABOURERS, SERVANTS OF
HUSBANDRY AND APPRENTICES [_5 Eliz. c. iv. Statutes of the Realm, Vol.
IV, Part I, pp. 414-22_], 1563.

I. Although there remain in force presently a great number of statutes
concerning ... apprentices, servants and labourers, as well in husbandry
as in divers other ... occupations, yet partly for the imperfection and
contrariety ... in sundry of the said laws, and for the variety and
number of them, and chiefly for that the wages and allowances limited in
many of the said statutes are in divers places too small ... respecting
the advancement of prices ... the said laws cannot conveniently without
the greatest grief and burden of the poor labourer and hired man be put
in due execution; and as the said statutes were at the time of the
making of them thought to be very good and beneficial ..., as divers of
them yet are, so if the substance of as many of the said laws as are
meet to be continued shall be digested and reduced into one sole law,
and in the same an uniform order prescribed ..., there is good hope that
it will come to pass that the same law, being duly executed, should
banish idleness, advance husbandry and yield unto the hired person both
in the time of scarcity and in the time of plenty a convenient
proportion of wages: Be it therefore enacted.... That as much of the
statutes heretofore made as concern the hiring, keeping, departing,
working, wages or order of servants, workmen, artificers, apprentices
and labourers ... shall be from and after the last day of September next
ensuing repealed....

II. No person after the aforesaid last day of September ... shall be
retained, hired or taken into service to work for any less time than for
one whole year in any of the sciences ... or arts of clothiers, woollen
cloth weavers, tuckers, fullers, cloth workers, shearmen, dyers,
hosiers, tailors, shoemakers, tanners, pewterers, bakers, brewers,
glovers, cutlers smiths, farriers, curriers, sadlers, spurriers,
turners, cappers, hat-makers or feltmakers, bowyers, fletchers,
arrowhead-makers, butchers, cooks, or millers.

III. Every person being unmarried and every other person being under the
age of thirty years that after the feast of Easter next shall marry, and
having been brought up in any of the said arts [etc.] or that hath
exercised any of them by the space of three years or more, and not
having lands, tenements [etc.] copyhold or freehold of an estate of
inheritance or for term of lives of the clear yearly value of 40s. nor
being worth of his own goods the clear value of 10l., ..., not being
retained with any person in husbandry or in any of the aforesaid arts
... nor in any other art, nor in household or in any office with any
nobleman, gentleman or others, ..., nor having a convenient farm or
other holding in tillage whereupon he may employ his labour, shall
(during the time that he shall so be unmarried or under the age of 30
years), upon request made by any person using the art or mystery wherein
the said person so required hath been exercised as is aforesaid, be
retained and shall not refuse to serve according to the tenor of this
Statute upon the pain and penalty hereafter mentioned.

IV. No person which shall retain any servant shall put away his said
servant, and no person retained according to this Statute shall depart
from his master, mistress or dame before the end of his term, upon the
pain hereafter mentioned, unless it be for some reasonable cause to be
allowed before two Justices of Peace, or one at the least, or before the
mayor or other chief officer of the city, borough or town corporate
wherein the said master [etc.] inhabiteth, to whom any of the parties
grieved shall complain; which said justices or chief officer shall have
the hearing and ordering of the matter between the said master [etc.]
and servant, according to the equity of the cause; and no such master
[etc.] shall put away any such servant at the end of his term, or any
such servant depart from his said master [etc.] at the end of his term,
without one quarter warning given ... upon the pain hereafter ensuing.

V. Every person between the age of 12 years and the age of 60 years not
being lawfully retained nor apprentice with any fisherman or mariner
haunting the seas, nor being in service with any carrier of any corn,
grain or meal for provision of the city of London, nor with any
husbandman in husbandry, nor in any city [etc.] in any of the arts ...
appointed by this Statute to have apprentices, nor being retained ...
for the digging ... melting ... making of any silver [or other metals,
coal, etc.], nor being occupied in the making of any glass, nor being a
gentleman born, nor being a student or scholar in any of the
universities or in any school, nor having [lands or goods, as above,
section 3], nor having a father or mother then living or other ancestor
whose heir apparent he is then having lands [etc.] of the yearly value
of £10 or above, or goods or chattels of the value of 40l., nor being a
necessary or convenient officer or servant lawfully retained as is
aforesaid, nor having a convenient farm or holding ... nor being
otherwise lawfully retained according to the true meaning of this
Statute, shall ... by virtue of this Statute be compelled to be retained
to serve in husbandry by the year with any person that keepeth husbandry
and will require any such person so to serve.

VI. [Penalty on masters unduly dismissing servants, 40s.: on servants
unduly departing or refusing to serve, imprisonment.]

VII. None of the said retained persons in husbandry or in any of the
arts or sciences above remembered, after the time of his retainer
expired, shall depart forth of one city, town or parish to another nor
out of the ... hundred nor out of the county where he last served, to
serve in any other city ... or county, unless he have a testimonial
under the seal of the said city or of the constable or other head
officer and of two other honest householders of the city, town or parish
where he last served, declaring his lawful departure, ..., which
testimonial shall be delivered unto the said servant and also registered
by the parson of the parish where such master [etc.] shall dwell....

VIII. [Penalty on a servant departing without such testimonial,
imprisonment or whipping; on any one hiring him, 5l.]

IX. All artificers and labourers being hired for wages by the day or
week shall betwixt the midst of the months of March and September be at
their work at or before 5 of the clock in the morning, and continue at
work until betwixt 7 and 8 of the clock at night, except it be in the
time of breakfast, dinner or drinking, the which times at the most shall
not exceed above 2 1/2 hours in the day ... and all the said artificers
and labourers between the midst of September and the midst of March
shall be at their work from the spring of the day in the morning until
the night of the same day, except it be in time afore appointed for
breakfast and dinner, upon pain to forfeit one penny for every hour's
absence to be deducted out of his wages.

X. [Penalty on artificers, etc., breaking contract with employers,
imprisonment and fine of 5l.]

XI. And for the declaration what wages servants, labourers and
artificers, either by the year or day or otherwise, shall receive, be it
enacted, That the justices of the peace of every shire ... within the
limits of their several commissions ... and the sheriff of that county
if he conveniently may, and every mayor, bailiff or other head officer
within any city ... wherein is any justice of peace, within the limits
of the said city ... shall before the 10th day of June next coming, and
afterward yearly at every general sessions first to be holden after
Easter, or at some time convenient within six weeks next following
Easter, calling unto them such discreet and grave persons of the said
county or city as they shall think meet, and conferring together
respecting the plenty or scarcity of the time and other circumstances
necessary to be considered, have authority within the limits of their
several commissions to rate and appoint the wages as well of such of the
said artificers ... or any other labourer, servant or workman whose
wages in time past hath been by any law rated and appointed, as also the
wages of all other labourers, artificers [etc.] which have not been
rated, as they shall think meet to be rated [etc.] by the year or by the
day, week, month or other wise, with meat and drink or without meat and
drink, and what wages every workman or labourer shall take by the great
for mowing, reaping or threshing [and other agricultural employment] and
for any other kind of reasonable labours or service, and shall yearly,
before the 12th day of July next after the said assessment made, certify
the same ... with the considerations and causes thereof into the Court
of Chancery[280]; whereupon it shall be lawful to the Lord Chancellor of
England [or] Lord Keeper upon declaration thereof to the Queen's Majesty
... or to the Lords and others of the Privy Council to cause to be
printed and sent down before the 1st day of September next after the
said certificate into every county ... proclamations containing the
several rates appointed ... with commandment ... to all persons ...
straitly to observe the same, and to all Justices [etc.] to see the same
duly and severely observed ...; upon receipt whereof the said Sheriffs,
Justices [etc.] shall cause the same proclamation to be entered of
record ... and shall forthwith in open markets upon the market days
before Michaelmas then ensuing cause the same proclamation to be
proclaimed ... and to be fixed in some convenient place ...: and if the
said sheriffs, justices [etc.] shall at their said general sessions or
at any time after within six weeks ... think it convenient to retain for
the year then to come the rates of wages that they certified the year
before or to change them, then they shall before the said 12th day of
July yearly certify into the said Court of Chancery their resolutions,
to the intent that proclamations may accordingly be renewed and sent
down, and if it shall happen that there be no need of any alteration ...
then the proclamations for the year past shall remain in force....

XII. [Penalty on Justices absent from sessions for rating wages, 5l.]

XIII. [Penalty for giving wages higher than the rate, ten days'
imprisonment and fine of 5l.; for receiving the same, twenty-one days'
imprisonment.]

XIV. [Penalty on servants, etc., assaulting masters, etc., one year's
imprisonment.]

XV. Provided that in the time of hay or corn harvest the Justices of
Peace and also the constable or other head officer of every township
upon request ... may cause all such artificers and persons as be meet to
labour ... to serve by the day for the mowing ... or inning of corn,
grain and hay, and that none of the said persons shall refuse so to do,
upon pain to suffer imprisonment in the stocks by the space of two days
and one night....

XVI. [Proviso for persons going harvesting into other counties.]

XVII. Two justices of peace, the mayor or other head officer of any city
(etc.) and two aldermen or two other discreet burgesses ... if there be
no aldermen, may appoint any such woman as is of the age of 12 years and
under the age of 40 years and unmarried and forth of service ... to be
retained or serve by the year or by the week or day for such wages and
in such reasonable sort as they shall think meet; and if any such woman
shall refuse so to serve, then it shall be lawful for the said justices
[etc.] to commit such woman to ward until she shall be bounden to serve
as aforesaid.

XVIII. And for the better advancement of husbandry and tillage and to
the intent that such as are fit to be made apprentices to husbandry may
be bounden thereunto, ... every person being a householder and having
half a ploughland at the least in tillage may receive as an apprentice
any person above the age of 10 years and under the age of 18 years to
serve in husbandry until his age of 21 years at the least, or until the
age of 24 years as the parties can agree ...

XIX. Every person being an householder and 24 years old at the least,
dwelling in any city or town corporate and exercising any art, mistery
or manual occupation there, may after the feast of St. John Baptist next
coming ... retain the son of any freeman not occupying husbandry nor
being a labourer and inhabiting in the same or in any other city or town
incorporate, to be bound as an apprentice after the custom and order of
the city of London for 7 years at the least, so as the term of such
apprentice do not expire afore such apprentice shall be of the age of 24
years at the least.

XX. Provided that it shall not be lawful to any person dwelling in any
city or town corporate exercising any of the misteries or crafts of a
merchant trafficking into any parts beyond the sea, mercer, draper,
goldsmith, ironmonger, embroiderer or clothier that doth put cloth to
making and sale, to take any apprentice or servant to be instructed in
any of the arts [etc.] which they exercise, except such servant or
apprentice be his son, or else that the father or mother of such
apprentice or servant shall have ... lands, tenements (etc.) of the
clear yearly value of 40s. of one estate of inheritance or freehold at
the least....

XXI. From and after the said feast of St. John the Baptist next, it
shall be lawful to every person being an householder and 24 years old at
the least and not occupying husbandry nor being a labourer dwelling in
any town not being incorporate that is a market town ... and exercising
any art, mistery or manual occupation ... to have in like manner to
apprentices the children of any other artificer not occupying husbandry
nor being a labourer, which shall inhabit in the same or in any other
such market town within the same shire, to serve as apprentices as is
aforesaid to any such art [etc.] as hath been usually exercised in any
such market town where such apprentice shall be bound.

XXII. Provided that it shall not be lawful to any person dwelling in any
such market town exercising the art of a merchant trafficking into the
parts beyond the seas, mercer [etc. as above, section XX] to take any
apprentice or in any wise to instruct any person in the arts [etc.] last
before recited, after the feast of St. John Baptist aforesaid, except
such servant or apprentice shall be his son, or else that the father or
mother of such apprentice shall have lands [etc.] of the clear yearly
value of 3l. of one estate of inheritance or freehold at the least....

XXIII. From and after the said feast it shall be lawful to any person
exercising the art of a smith, wheelwright, ploughwright, millwright,
carpenter, rough mason, plaisterer, sawyer, lime-burner, brickmaker,
bricklayer, tiler, slater, healyer, tilemaker, linen-weaver, turner,
cooper, millers, earthen potters, woollen weaver weaving housewives' or
household cloth only and none other, cloth-fuller otherwise called
tucker or walker, burner of ore and wood ashes, thatcher or shingler,
wheresoever he shall dwell, to have the son of any person as apprentice
... albeit the father or mother of any such apprentice have not any
lands, tenements or hereditaments.

XXIV. After the first day of May next coming it shall not be lawful to
any person, other than such as now do lawfully exercise any art, mistery
or manual occupation, to exercise any craft now used within the realm of
England or Wales, except he shall have been brought up therein seven
years at the least as apprentice in manner abovesaid, nor to set any
person on work in such occupation being not a workman at this day,
except he shall have been apprentice as is aforesaid, or else having
served as an apprentice will become a journeyman or be hired by the
year; upon pain that every person willingly offending shall forfeit for
every default 40s. for every month.

XXV. Provided that no person exercising the art of a woollen cloth
weaver, other than such as be inhabiting within the counties of
Cumberland, Westmoreland, Lancaster, and Wales, weaving friezes, cottons
or housewives' cloth only, making and weaving woollen cloth commonly
sold by any clothier, shall have any apprentice or shall instruct any
person in the science of weaving aforesaid in any place (cities, towns
corporate, and market towns only except), unless such person be his son,
or else that the father or mother of such apprentice or servant shall
... have lands [etc.] to the clear yearly value of 3l. of an estate of
inheritance or freehold ... upon pain of forfeiture of 20s. for every
month.

XXVI. Every person that shall have three apprentices in any of the said
crafts of a cloth-maker, fuller, shearman, weaver, tailor or shoemaker
shall keep one journeyman, and for every other apprentice above the
number of the said three apprentices one other journeyman, upon pain of
every default therein, 10l.

XXVII. [Proviso for worsted-makers of Norwich.]

XXVIII. If any person shall be required by any householder having half a
ploughland at the least in tillage to be an apprentice and to serve in
husbandry, or in any other kind of art before expressed, and shall
refuse so to do, then upon the complaint of such housekeeper made to one
Justice of Peace of the county wherein the said refusal is made, or of
such householder inhabiting in any city, town corporate, or market town
to the mayor, bailiffs or head officer of the said city [etc.] ... they
shall have full power to send for the same person so refusing; and if
the said Justice or head officer shall think the said person meet to
serve as an apprentice in that art ... the said Justice or head officer
shall have power ... to commit him unto ward, there to remain until he
will be bounden to serve ... and if any such master shall evil entreat
his apprentice ... or the apprentice do not his duty to his master, then
the said master or apprentice being grieved shall repair unto one
Justice of Peace within the said county or to the head officer of the
place where the said master dwelleth, who shall ... take such order and
direction between the said master and his apprentice as the equity of
the case shall require; and if for want of good conformity in the said
master the said Justice or head officer cannot compound the matter
between him and his apprentice, then the said Justice or head officer
shall take bond of the said master to appear at the next sessions then
to be holden in the said county or within the said city [etc.] ... and
upon his appearance and hearing of the matter ... if it be thought meet
unto them to discharge the said apprentice, then the said Justices or
four of them at the least, whereof one to be of the quorum, or the said
head officer, with the consent of three other of his brethren or men of
best reputation within the said city [etc.] shall have power ... to
pronounce that they have discharged the said apprentice of his
apprenticehood ...: and if the default shall be found to be in the
apprentice, then the said Justices or head officer, with the assistants
aforesaid, shall cause such due punishment to be ministered unto him as
by their wisdom and discretions shall be thought meet.

XXIX. Provided that no person shall by force of this Statute be bounden
to enter into any apprenticeship, other than such as be under the age of
21 years.

XXX. And to the end that this Statute may from time to time be ... put
in good execution ... be it enacted, That the Justices of Peace of every
county, dividing themselves into several limits, and likewise every
mayor or head officer of any city or town corporate, shall yearly
between the feast of St. Michael the Archangel and the Nativity of our
Lord, and between the feast of the Annunciation of our Lady and the
feast of the Nativity of St. John Baptist ... make a special and
diligent inquiry of the branches and articles of this Statute and of the
good execution of the same, and where they shall find any defaults to
see the same severely corrected and punished without favour ... or
displeasure.

XXXI.... Every Justice of Peace, mayor, or head officer, for every day
that he shall sit in the execution of this Statute, shall have allowed
unto him 5s. to be paid ... of the fines [etc.] due by force of this
Statute....

XXXII. [Procedure for recovery of penalties.]

XXXIII. Provided always that this Act shall not be prejudicial to the
cities of London and Norwich, or to the lawful liberties [etc.] of the
same cities for the having of apprentices.

XXXIV. [Contracts of apprenticeship contrary to this Act to be void, and
a penalty of 10l.]

XXXV. [Contracts of apprenticeship to hold good though made while the
apprentice is under age.]

[Footnote 280: This provision was repealed in 1597.]


7. PROPOSALS FOR THE BETTER ADMINISTRATION OF THE STATUTE OF ARTIFICERS
[_S.P.D., Eliz., Vol. 88, No. 11_], 1572.

Whereas there passed an act in the Parliament holden at Westminster in
the fifth year of the reign of our most gracious Sovereign Lady the
Queen's Majesty that now is, touching divers good and laudable orders
for artificers, labourers, servants of husbandry, and apprentices; in
the which act, amongst divers and sundry good branches therein
contained, there are two specially to be noted, which, as it should
seem, were then and therein specially enacted for the only means of the
better maintaining of the same act in the full strength and virtue,
according to the true meaning thereof: which have been, and yet daily
are, as well by the subtle devices of some lewd servants, as also by the
disorderly dealings of some masters, mistresses, and dames, not only
neglected, but also wilfully violated and broken, whereby the true, good
and godly meaning of the same act, for so good and laudable an order
provided in that behalf, doth and will daily grow to be accounted as
frustrate and of none effect: and as it now already is the chief, or
only, cause of the great number of idle vagabonds, wherewith the realm
at this present is so replenished: so, without it shall please the
Queen's Majesty by good advice to provide some speedy remedy therefore,
it will not only be a means of the increasing of them but also of their
maintenance.

The two branches to be noted are these:--

The points wherein the masters, mistresses, dames, and servants do so
abuse the two foresaid branches, that they be in a manner to frustrate.

It is too manifest, that divers and sundry servants, retained as well in
husbandry as in other the arts and sciences aforesaid, and others out of
those sciences throughout the whole Realm do daily, notwithstanding this
act, and without any fear of the penalty thereof, at their pleasures
before the time of their covenanted service be expired, either purloin
somewhat from their masters, mistresses, and dames, and so suddenly run
away, or else, not willing to be rebuked for their faults, do quarrel
with them, and so boldly depart away without any certificate[281] or
testimonial for their discharge: and being thus disorderly departed do
forge a testimonial, or get one to forge it for them, although they give
12d. or 2s. for the doing thereof, whereas, if they had orderly
departed, [it] should have cost them but 2d.: and with such testimonial
dare boldly pass from one shire to another, yea some time from one
parish to another, and there be retained till they find the like means,
or pick the like occasion to depart in like disorder. And the very cause
why they dare thus boldly and disorderly depart, leaving their masters,
mistresses, and dames destitute in their most need, is for that no order
is kept, according to the Statute, in the making, signing, and
delivering of the testimonials: but [they] be made by the masters
themselves or by some other in their houses that can write, and being so
disorderly made, do, as disorderly, sign and deliver the same without
calling either parson, vicar, or other officer to the same: which is a
very good cause for a very simple servant, seeing how slight a
testimonial will serve him to pass with, to move him to forge the like
at all times after to serve his turn. And yet if they were orderly made,
signed, and delivered, according to Statute, it could no better serve
his turn to pass with than one of these: for if he pass a shire or two
off from the place where he last served, neither the marks nor names
thereunto signed be there known scarce to one among a thousand.

For the second branch.--It is likewise too manifest, that there be many
masters, mistresses and dames, knowing how much the order of these
certificates or testimonials be abused, which have not letted to retain
such servants so departed without showing any certificates or
testimonials at all, willing for necessity's sake to retain rather a
simple vagabond coming without his certificate, than a subtle vagabond
coming with his forged testimonials, as he doubteth, and yet perchance
is true indeed. But that is too hard for them to know, for that the
names therein are to them unknown, and the places, far asunder, not easy
to be tried: and so sometime an honest poor servant indeed passeth
unhired for want of good order keeping in these testimonials, and a very
vagabond indeed is some time hired in hope of his simplicity. And the
masters, mistresses, and dames be commonly deceived by both kinds when
they stand in most need of their service.

The cause why these good and laudable orders run to such decay by the
foresaid abuses, is, for that no one person hath any benefit, worth the
pains, and charges, to look to the redress hereof: the same being so
hard and painful a matter to be done throughout the realm, and
therewithall so chargeable.

Therefore if it may please the Queen's Majesty of her Highness' most
gracious benignity, for the better and speedier reformation hereof, to
appoint and give authority by her Majesty's Letters Patents for term of
years unto us, her Highness' most humble subjects, Richard Carmarden and
Edmond Mathew, our deputies and assigns, to give out one uniform order
of testimonials to every shire and parish throughout the realm at our
only costs and charges, taking therefore in recompense as well of our
said costs and charges, as also for our travails which we shall bestow
therein, no more than is already limited by the said Statute, which is
but two pence for every testimonial:[282] and that also these articles
here following may be annexed to the said Statute by this Parliament.

First, That there be no other certificates or testimonials used in the
realm, to be delivered to any servants by any person or persons, but
only such as shall be made and delivered by such as her Majesty hath or
shall appoint by her Highness' Letters Patents to do the same.

Secondly, That every servant so departing and having received one of the
same certificates or testimonials, and seeking again to serve, shall
first deliver, to such as shall be there appointed to be the officer's
deputies, his old testimonial cancelled, before he be again retained.

And thirdly, That none of the said certificates or testimonials, so
orderly delivered to any servant, shall be any discharge for him to pass
with for any longer time than for one month after the date thereof: and
if any person be taken with any testimonial, the date thereof being so
expired, then to be lawful for every head officer to take the said
testimonial from him, and to deliver the same cancelled to the officer's
deputy and to force him to serve or to be, etc.

[Footnote 281: For the working of the system of certificates, see No.
14, pp. 352-3.]

[Footnote 282: For this method of delegating administration to private
speculators see Section V of this Part, Nos. 14 and 22.]


8. DRAFT OF A BILL FIXING MINIMUM RATES FOR SPINNERS AND WEAVERS
[_S.P.D., Eliz., Vol. 244, No. 129_], 1593.

An Act as well to avoid deceits done by spinners of woollen yarn, and
weavers of woollen cloths, and to increase their wages, as also to
reform the great abuses and oppressions done to her Majesty's good
subjects by regrators of woollen yarn, commonly called yarn choppers or
jobbers of yarn.

Forasmuch as divers Laws and Statutes have been heretofore ordained for
the true making of woollen cloths, and divers penalties, in some cases
of money, and in some other cases of the cloths themselves, are by the
same Laws and Statutes imposed upon clothiers, by whom many thousands of
her Majesty's subjects are set to work, and maintained; and that it
falleth out many times, that divers faults punishable even with the loss
of their cloths without the clothiers' fault are voluntarily committed
by their spinners and weavers, by the one's deceitful spinning their
yarn, and by the other's false weaving the same into cloth; and
forasmuch as necessity doth partly enforce them thereunto, for lack of
sufficient wages and allowance for their workmanship at the hands of the
clothier, whereby to sustain the poor estate of themselves, their wives
and children; at the humble petition as well of the said clothiers, as
also of their said spinners and weavers, and first for the avoiding of
all deceitful dealing between the clothiers and their weavers, Be it
enacted by the Queen's most excellent Majesty, the Lords Spiritual and
Temporal, and the Commons, in this present parliament assembled, and by
the authority of the same:--That all wool which, after the feast of
Easter next, shall be delivered for or by any clothier to any person or
persons to be spun, shall be delivered by true and lawful weight, and
that all and every spinner and spinners shall deliver again to or for
such clothier yarn of the same wool by the same true and lawful weight
(all necessary waste thereof excepted) without concealing any part
thereof, or deceitfully putting thereunto any oil, water, or other
thing, upon pain that every spinner doing the contrary shall forfeit
four times the value that such deceit by any such spinner committed or
done shall amount unto. And for the better relief of all and every the
said spinner and spinners, be it further enacted by the authority
aforesaid, that after the said feast all and every clothier and
clothiers and spinsters to the market shall pay for the spinning of
every pound weight of the best sorting warp three pence, of every pound
weight of the second warp two pence halfpenny, of every pound weight of
the worst warp to be used in sorting cloths two pence farthing, of every
pound weight of the best abbs[283] two pence halfpenny, of every pound
weight of the best sorting abbs two pence, and of every pound weight of
the worst sorting abbs to be used in sorting cloths three halfpence
farthing, of every pound weight of single list three halfpence, upon
pain to forfeit for every penny that any such clothier shall withhold or
detain from any spinner contrary to the charitable intent of this
statute twelve pence.

To avoid all evil and corrupt dealing between clothiers and their
weavers, be it enacted by the authority aforesaid:--That all and every
weaver and weavers which after the said feast, shall have the weaving of
any woollen yarn to be webbed into cloth, shall weave, work, and put
into the web, for cloth to be made thereof, as much and all the same
yarn, as any clothier, or any other person for or in the behalf of any
clothier, shall deliver to the same weaver with his used mark put to the
same, without changing, or any parcel thereof leaving out of the same
web, or else shall restore to the same clothier the surplusage of the
same yarn, if any shall be left not put into the same web, without
deceitfully putting of any deceivable brine, moisture, sand, dust, or
other thing thereunto, upon pain to forfeit four times the value that
such deceit by any such weaver committed or done shall amount unto. And
for the better relief of all and every the said weaver and weavers be it
further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that after the said feast
all and every clothier and clothiers shall pay for the weaving of every
ell[284] containing three pounds weight in yarn, of every broad listed
cloth, as it shall be laid upon the bar and which shall be woven in a
fourteen hundred sley, sixteen pence, for the weaving of every ell,
containing three pounds weight and three-quarters in yarn of every broad
listed cloth, as it shall be laid upon the bar and which shall be woven
in a thirteen hundred sley, fourteen pence, and for every beer[285]
between thirteen hundred and fourteen hundred twelve pence, for the
weaving of every ell containing three pounds weight and three-quarters
at the least in yarn of every broad listed cloth as it shall be laid
upon the bar and which shall be woven in a twelve hundred sley, ten
pence, and for every beer between twelve hundred and thirteen hundred
two shillings, for weaving of every ell containing three pounds weight
and an half at the least in yarn of every broad listed cloth as it shall
be laid upon the bar and which shall be woven in a eleven hundred sley,
eight pence, and for every beer between eleven hundred and twelve
hundred, twelve pence, for weaving of every ell containing three pounds
weight and an half at the least in yarn of every broad listed cloth as
it shall be laid upon the bar and which shall be woven in a ten hundred
sley, six pence, and for every beer between ten hundred and eleven
hundred twelve pence, for weaving of every broad listed cloth, that
shall be woven in a sley under a ten hundred, and that shall contain
thirty ells as it shall be laid upon the bar, twelve shillings, for the
weaving of every broad listed cloth that shall be woven in a sley under
a ten hundred, and that shall contain eight and twenty ells as it shall
be laid upon the bar, ten shillings, for weaving of every narrow listed
sorting cloth that shall be woven in a ten hundred sley, ten shillings,
for the weaving of every narrow listed sorting cloth that shall be woven
in a nine hundred sley, nine shillings, for the weaving of every narrow
listed sorting cloth that shall be woven in an eight hundred sley, eight
shillings, and for the weaving of every beer over and above in any of
the said sleys of the said narrow listed cloths three pence, upon pain
to forfeit for every penny that any clothier shall withhold or detain
from any weaver contrary to the true intent of this act twelve pence.

And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid that wheresoever
any greater wages hath been heretofore usually given for spinning any of
the sorts of yarn aforesaid or for weaving any of the sorts of cloths
aforesaid, that there and in all such place the same wages or greater
shall after the said feast be given without any diminution thereof, upon
pain that every clothier shall forfeit for every penny that he or she
shall so detain from any spinner or weaver contrary to the true intent
of this act twelve pence, any the rate or wages before in this act
particularly limited and appointed to weavers notwithstanding. And be it
further enacted by the said authority, that after the said feast no
clothier, for the weaving of any his or her white cloths, shall use or
cause to be used any sley of less breadth than eleven quarters and three
nails of the yard in white work beside the list, upon pain to forfeit
for every such default ten shillings. And be it further enacted by the
authority aforesaid that after the said feast no clothier shall use any
warping bar that shall contain any greater length than three yards from
one pin to another upon pain to forfeit for every such default ten
shillings. And further be it enacted by the authority aforesaid that
justices of assize in their circuits, justices of peace in their
sessions, sheriffs in their turns, stewards in their leets and lawdays,
mayors, sheriffs, and bailiffs of cities, boroughs and towns corporate
in their courts, shall and may inquire, hear, and determine from time to
time all and every the said offences committed and done within the
limits of their several jurisdictions and authorities.

[Here follow provisions as to the division of fines.]

And forasmuch as divers evil-disposed persons commonly called yarn
choppers or jobbers of woollen yarn, wanting the fear of God, and caring
only for their own private gain without having any regard to the
maintenance of the commonwealth, using no trade either of making woollen
cloths, or of any other thing made of woollen yarn, inverting the true
intent of the statute made in the eighth year of our late Sovereign Lord
King Henry the sixth among other things especially to destroy the
falsity of regrators of yarn called yarn choppers, to their own
malicious purpose, do in every fair and market buy up and get into their
hands so great quantities of woollen yarn, that the clothiers and others
using lawful trade wherein woollen yarn must need be occupied, and by
which trade many thousands of her Majesty's poor subjects are relieved,
are driven for their necessity sake to buy the same at their hands
deceitfully handled and at such unreasonable price as they list to set
upon the same, whereby the clothiers and others using divers lawful ways
and means for the employment of woollen yarn, are very greatly hindered,
and such drones, idle members and evil weeds in a commonwealth by such
oppressions maintained and greatly enriched, for remedy whereof be it
enacted established and ordained by the authority aforesaid:--That no
manner of person or persons shall after the said feast of Easter next
buy, bargain, take, or make any promise for bargain or sale of or for
any woollen yarn but only such person or persons as are known to be
makers of woollen cloth or other thing made of woollen yarn or mixed
with woollen yarn, his or their wife or wives or his or their children,
apprentices or servants, inhabiting in his or their mansion house or
houses, and who shall or may lawfully make of the said woollen yarn any
kind of bayes, knit hose, arras, tapestry, coverlets, or any other thing
or things used to be made of woollen yarn or mixed with woollen yarn,
upon pain of forfeiture of all woollen yarn to be bought, or whereof any
promise for bargain or sale thereof shall be taken or made contrary to
the true meaning of this act, in whose hands soever any such woollen
yarn shall be found, and further to incur all the pains and penalties
limited to yarn choppers by the said act made in the eighth year of King
Henry the sixth.

[Here follows provisions as to the division of fines.]

[Footnote 283: _i.e._, wefts.]

[Footnote 284: The words from "ell" to "fourteen hundred" have been
crossed out in the original, and the rest of the passage as far as the
end of the paragraph (p. 339) is bracketed as if for cancellation.
Interlined is the following substituted clause, to be read after the
words "for the weaving of every":--"of their best fine cloths vjs.
viijd., and for their second sort of fine cloths iiijs., and for their
least sort of fine cloths iijs., and for the best sort of sorting cloths
ijs., and for the middle and least sort of sorting cloths or pack cloths
with narrow lists, xviijd., more than was given by any clothier in any
of the said counties or elsewhere of like making for the weaving of
every or any of the said sorts of cloths at or before the feast of Xmas
last past."]

[Footnote 285: _i.e._, the (variable) number of ends into which a warp
is divided in the process of warping.]


9. DRAFT PIECE-LIST SUBMITTED FOR RATIFICATION TO THE WILTSHIRE JUSTICES
BY CLOTHIERS AND WEAVERS [_Hist. MSS. Com., Vol. I, p. 162, The Records
of Quarter Sessions in the County of Wiltshire_], 1602.

Apud Trowbridge, 30 December A.o. xlv{to} Elizabethae Reginae.

The just proportions of the several works put forth by the Clothiers of
the County of Wilts both to the Weavers and Spinners, with the valuation
of the wages according as every sorts of work do deserve by reason of
the fineness of the wool and spinning of every sort of work; as also by
reason of the hard working of every sort with the usual numbers of
hundreds, beers[286] and abbs which is commonly put forth to every
several cloth, which is the best rate by which we can keep apportion,
set down by us the clothiers of the said county.

  _Imprimis_ we think a weaver is worth to have for
    the weaving of a cloth of 700                                 viis.
  And for every beer above 700 and under 800                       iid.
  The spinning of these sorts of warp is worth the
    pound                                                          iid.
  And the spinning of the abb is worth the pound                1d. ob.
  _Item_, one of 800 of white work is worth the weaving          viiis.
  And for every beer above 800 and under 900[287]              iid. ob.
  The spinning of these sorts of warp worth the pound          iid. ob.
  The spinning of the Abbe worth the pound                      id. ob.
  These sorts of broad lists are more worth than the
    narrow lists by the cloth                                     xiid.
  The hanking is worth                                            xiid.

[Scales are also given for 900, 1000, 1100, and 1200 lbs. A graduated
rise in price varying from xiid. in the case of a cloth of 900 lbs. to
iis. for a cloth of 1100 to 1200 lbs. is awarded; for every beere id. up
to vid., and for every pound of abbe above 54 and not above 60 xviiid.,
and above 60 lbs. xxd.]

Clothiers Signing--

  William Yerbury.
  Nicholas Phippe.
  John Usher.
  Walter Yerbury.
  John Yewe.
  Edward Cogswell.
  Richard Dycke.

Weavers Signing--

  Hugh Watts.
  Henry Cappe.
  William Rundell.
  Henry Prior.
  Thomas Lavington.
  Bartholomew Skege.

[Footnote 286: For the meaning of "beer" and "abb" see notes to document
No. 8.]

[Footnote 287: Instead of "about 800 under 900," as printed in _op.
cit._]


10. AN ACT EMPOWERING JUSTICES TO FIX MINIMUM RATES OF PAYMENT [_1 James
I, c. 6. Statutes of the Realm, Vol. IV, Part II, pp. 1022-24_],
1603-04.

... And whereas the said act [_i.e._ 5 Eliz., c. iv] hath not, according
to the true meaning thereof, been duly put in execution, whereby the
rates of wages for poor artificers, labourers and other persons whose
wages were meant to be rated by the said act, have not been rated and
proportioned according to the plenty, scarcity, necessity, and respect
of the time, which was politicly intended by the said act, by reason
that ambiguity and question have risen and been made whether the rating
of all manner artificers, workmen and workwomen, his and their wages,
other than such as by some statute and law have been rated, or else such
as did work about husbandry, should or might be rated by the said law;
Forasmuch as the said law hath been found beneficial for the
commonwealth, be it enacted by authority of this present parliament,
that the said statute, and the authority by the same statute given to
any person or persons for assessing and rating of wages, and the
authority to them in the said act committed, shall be expounded and
construed, and shall by force of this act give authority to all persons
having any such authority to rate wages of any labourers, weavers,
spinsters, and workmen or workwomen whatsoever, either working by the
day, week, month, year, or taking any work at any person or persons'
hands whatsoever, to be done in great or otherwise....

And furthermore be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, that if any
clothier or other shall refuse to obey the said order, rate or
assessment of wages as aforesaid, and shall not pay so much or so great
wages to their weavers, spinsters, workmen or workwomen as shall be so
set down rated and appointed, according to the true meaning of this act,
that then every clothier and other person and persons so offending shall
forfeit and lose for every such offence, to the party aggrieved, ten
shillings: and that if the said offence and offences of not paying so
much or so great wages to their said workmen, workwomen and others shall
be confessed by the offender, or that the same shall be proved by two
sufficient and lawful witnesses before the justices of peace in their
quarter sessions of the peace, the justices of assize in their sessions,
or before any two justices of the peace, whereof one to be of the
quorum; that then every such person shall forthwith stand and be in law
convicted thereof; which said forfeiture of ten shillings shall be
levied by distress and sale of the offenders goods, by warrant from the
said justices before whom any such conviction shall be had; which sale
shall be good in law against any such offender or offenders....

Provided nevertheless and be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, That
no clothier, being a justice of peace in any precinct or liberty, shall
be any rater of any wages for any weaver, tucker, spinster, or other
artizan that dependeth upon the making of cloth; and in case there be
not above the number of two justices of peace within such precinct or
liberty but such as are clothiers, that in such case the same wages
shall be rated and assessed by the major part of the common council of
such precinct or liberty, and such justice or justices of peace (if any
there be) as are not clothiers.


11. ADMINISTRATION IN WILTSHIRE OF ACTS REGULATING THE MANUFACTURE OF
CLOTH [_Hist. MSS. Com., Vol. I, pp. 74-5_], 1603.

Orders agreed upon for the occupation of weavers.[288]

_First_, that no person using the trade of weaving woollen cloth be
suffered to keep more looms than that the statute made ao v{to}
Elizabethae alloweth. 2. _Item_, that all such persons as are now
permitted to be master weaver, and themselves have not served their full
term of apprenticeship, whether he be above or under the age of xxxtie
years and married or unmarried, shall not make or take any apprentice to
serve him as apprentice hereafter, neither shall any serve him as an
apprentice. 3. _Item_, that every such person permitted to be a master
weaver which hath not served his full years of apprenticeship shall not
keep above one loom going; and no apprentice to work with him but a
journeyman or journeymen. 4. _Item_, none hereafter to be made
apprentice to the art of weaving broad cloth but according to the form
of the statute _ut supra_. 5. _Item_, that all such as are now allowed
to be apprentices, their names to be registered, and none hereafter to
be made apprentices but such persons as are appointed overseers of the
said occupation to be first made acquainted thereof, to the end no abuse
may be suffered, nor unlawful shift used to defraud the true meaning of
the said statute. 6. _Item_, that no weaver shall sell his apprentice
and take another before the first have served seven years. 7. _Item_,
that none shall work as a journeyman except he bring certificate that he
hath served full seven years, or his master to testify the same. 8.
_Item_, that no clothman shall keep above one loom in his house, neither
any weaver that hath a ploughland shall keep more than one loom in his
house. 9. _Item_, that no weaver shall keep two apprentices in one loom
working except one of them be in his last year. 10. _Item_, that no
apprentice shall come forth of his covenant of apprenticeship before he
be four and twenty years of age, to avoid young marriages and the
increase of poor people. 11. _Item_, that no person or persons shall
keep any loom or looms going in any other house or houses beside their
own, or maintain any to do the same. 12. _Item_, that all those that
have entered into the trade of broad weaving contrary to the statute
within these two years may be expelled and put from the same trade, and
all those that are journeyman (_sic_) and have not served their time, if
they be not married, may return and serve their seven years out, or else
to be put from their occupation. 13. _Item_, that all those that are
entered in contrary to the statute, having other things to live upon,
may be expelled, and put from the trade. 14. _Item_, that all weavers
dwelling in any town corporate, borough, or market town, may call into
their fellowship all weavers dwelling within three miles compass of any
of the said towns, as well journeymen and [as?] masters, and that there
may be so many overseers of these said companies as may be fit for the
same. 15. _Item_, that every master weaver of these several companies
may have a meeting once every quarter, whereby they may have the
examination of those things that may be amiss amongst them, to the end
no disorder rise amongst them as in time past hath been, and that every
broad weaver keeping a loom may give quarterly ivd. towards the relief
of their poor brethren that shall need. 16. _Item_, that the master of
every several company may call before them every particular offender in
matters pertaining to their occupation, whether it be master or
journeyman or apprentice, to the end that drunkenness, idleness, or
pilfering of their masters' stuff may be punished by laws fit for any of
these offences. 17. _Item_, that any of those that shall disobey any of
these good orders that are set down, that there may be such penalties
inflicted upon any such persons as may be able to suffice them, and
shall be agreeable with the laws of the realm, and by such persons as
are thereunto authorised by the statutes and laws.

  James Martin.
  Henry Martyn.
  G. Tooker.
  Hen. Poole.
  James Ley.
  Thos. Hungerforde.
  Edmund Lamberte.

[Footnote 288: The original heading, for which that above was afterwards
substituted, runs:--"A table to be presented for and concerning the
occupation of weaving by the sworn men unto Henry Priour authorized for
that purpose." It is probable that the "sworn men" were clothiers and
weavers (see No. 9), and that Henry Priour was a justice.]


12. ASSESSMENT MADE BY THE JUSTICES OF WILTSHIRE, DEALING MAINLY WITH
OTHER THAN TEXTILE WORKERS [_Hist. MSS. Com., Vol. I, pp. 162-167, The
Records of Quarter Sessions in the County of Wilts_], 1604.

... third day of May in the first year of our Sovereign Lord James by
the grace of God King of England ... Defender of the Faith, and upon
diligent respect and consideration by ... for the time ... according to
the form of a statute made in the first[289] year of the reign of our
late Sovereign Lady Queen ... hereafter particularly ensueth.

_Wages by the year for husbandry._

A bailiff of husbandry shall not take by the year of wages above liiis.
iiiid. and a livery or xs. for the same.

A chief shepherd which keepeth one thousand sheep and above shall not
take by the year of wages above xls., and a livery or viiis. for the
same, and pasture or feeding for xxt sheep all the year or xiid. for
every of them.

A shepherd which keepeth six hundred sheep shall not take of wages above
xxiiis. iiid., and a livery or vis. for the same, and feeding for ten
sheep all the year or xiid. for every of them.

A chief hind of husbandry and a chief carter shall not take by the year
of wages above xls. and a livery or viiis.

A common servant of husbandry and a common shepherd above the age of xxi
years shall not take by the year [either of] them of wages above
xxxiiis. iiiid. and a livery or vis. viiid. for the same.

All other servants and shepherds under xxi years and above xvi years
shall not take by the year of wages above xxs. and a livery or vs. for
the same.

A chief woman servant shall not take by the year of wages above xxxs.
and a livery or vs. for the same.

Every other woman servant above xvi years of age shall not take by the
year of wages above xxs. and a livery or vs. for the same.

_Wages by the day for labourers in harvest and at all other times of the
year in husbandry._

Mowers of grain by the day with meat and drink shall not take of wages
above vd. and without meat and drink not above xd.

Men labourers in haymaking or gripping of lent corn shall not take by
the day with meat and drink of wages above iiiid. and without meat and
drink not above viiid.

Women labourers in haymaking or gripping of lent corn shall not take by
the day with meat and drink of wages above iiid. and without not above
vid.

Mowers of corn shall not take by the day with meat and drink of wages
above vd., and without meat and drink not above xd.

Men reapers of wheat and rye shall not take by the day with meat and
drink of wages not above vd., and without meat and drink not above xd.

Women reapers of wheat and rye shall not take by the day with meat and
drink not above iiiid. and without meat and drink not above ixd.

Every hedger, ditcher, thresher and other like labourer in husbandry not
afore named shall not take by the day from Michaelmas to the
Annunciation of our Lady of wages with meat and drink not above iiid.,
and without meat and drink not above viid., and that at the election of
the hirer; and from the Annunciation of our Lady unto Michaelmas of
wages by the day with meat and drink not above iiiid., and without meat
and drink not above viiid., and that at the election of the hirer.

_Wages for Taskwork without Meat and Drink._

For reaping and binding of wheat, rye, or beans, for every acre by the
lug not above xxd.

Mowing of barley for every acre by lug not above vd.

Mowing of oats for every acre by lug not above iiiid.

Hacking or hawming of pease or fatches for every acre by lug not above
xiid.

Mowing of grass for every acre by lug not above xd.

Making of hay for every acre by lug not above ixd.

Threshing of wheat, rye, pease, beans, or fatches, for every quarter,
not above xd.

Threshing of barley or oats for every quarter not above vid.

Ditching, planting, and hedging of a perch containing sixteen foot and a
half in length, three foot in depth, and five foot in breadth in gravel
or stony ground, and setting the same with two chests of plants and
making hedge for every perch, not above vid.

Ditching, planting, and hedging after the same order in other sandy or
easy grounds, by the lug of like awise not above vd.

Making of hedge for every perch not above 1d.

Making of plaisted hedge and other fenced hedge more strong and scouring
of the ditch, for every perch not above iid.

Paling and railing with one rail, felling and clearing of timber and
digging of the holes for the posts, for every perch not above xd.

Railing with double rails with felling and clearing of timber and
digging of the holes for the posts, for every perch not above vd.

Railing with single rail after the same sort, for every perch not above
iiid.

Sawing of board or timber for every hundred not above xviid.

_Wages by the day for these artificers following._

  For a Master Carpenter   }     None of these shall take by the
  For a Master Free Mason  }     day from Michaelmas to the
  For a Master rough Mason }     Anunciation of our lady with
  For a Master Bricklayer  }     meat and drink of wages not
  For a Master Plumber     }     above vd., and without meat and
  For a Master Glazier     }     drink not above xd.
  For a Master Carver      }     And from the Annunciation of
  For a Master Joiner      }     our Lady to Michaelmas not
  For a Master Millwright  }     above vid., with meat and drink,
  For a Master Wheelwright }     and without meat and drink not
  For a Master Plasterer   }     above xid., by the day.

For every common workman or journeyman of these sciences from Michaelmas
to the Annunciation of our Lady of wages by the day with meat and drink
not above iiid., and without meat and drink not above viid.; and from
the Annunciation of our Lady to Michaelmas with meat and drink not above
iiiid., and without meat and drink not above viid.

For every apprentice of these sciences and for every labourer to attend
to serve them, from Michaelmas to the Annunciation of our Lady with meat
and drink not above iid., and without meat and drink not above vd., and
from the Annunciation of our Lady to Michaelmas with meat and drink not
above iiid., and without meat and drink not above viid.

_Wages by the day for these occupations following_:--

For a chief ploughwright by the day from Michaelmas to the Annunciation
of our Lady with meat and drink not above iiiid., and without meat and
drink not above viiid.; and from the Annunciation of our Lady to
Michaelmas with meat and drink not above vd., and without meat and drink
not above xd.

For sawyers the couple from Michaelmas to the Annunciation of our Lady
with meat and drink not above viiid., and without meat and drink not
above xvid.; and from the Annunciation of our Lady to Michaelmas with
meat and drink not above xd., and without meat and drink not above
xviiid. So always that the owner of the saw do have for every day 1d.
more than his fellow.

  For a Hellyer or Tiler  }
  For a Shingler          } Every one of these to take by the
  For a Brickmaker        } day from Michaelmas to the Annunciation
  For a Limeburner        } of our Lady with meat and
  For a Lathmaker         } drink not above iiid., and without
  For a Quarrier          } meat and drink not above viid.
  For a Pavier or Pitcher }
  For a Collier           } And from the Annunciation of our
  For a Bondcaster        } Lady to Michaelmas with meat and
  For a Thatcher          } drink not above iiiid., and without
  For a Chandler          } meat and drink not above viiid.
  For a Tinker            }
  For a Painter           }

_Wages by the year for the journeymen of these occupations following
with meat and drink._

For a miller by the year with meat and drink of wages not above xls., and
a livery, or vis., viiid., for the same.

For a loader to the mill of wages not above xxvis., viiid., and a livery,
or vis., for the same.

For a dyer, for a brewer, for a tanner, for a linen weaver, the chiefest
to take by the year of wages not above ls., and all other common workmen
of the same occupation of wages by the year not above xls. without any
livery.

  A Shoemaker          }
  A Currier            }
  A Woollen Weaver     } The chiefest of these to take by the
  A Tucker             } year of wages not above xls.
  A Fuller             }
  A Shearman           }
  A Clothworker        }
  A Hosier             } and every common workman of the the
  A Tailor             } same occupation to take by the year
  A Baker              } of wages not above xxvis., viiid.
  A Glover             }
  A Girdler            }
  A Spurrier           }
  A Capper             }
  A Hatter             }
  A Feltmaker          }
  A Bowyer             } The chiefest of these to take by the
  A Fletcher           } year of wages not above xls.
  An Arrowhead-maker   }
  A Butcher            }
  A Fishmonger         }
  A Pewterer           }
  A Cutler             }
  A Smith              } and every common workman of the
  A Sadler             } same occupations to take by the year
  A Furrier or Skinner } of wages not above xxvis., viiid.
  A Parchment-maker    }
  A Cooper             }
  A Earthen Potmaker   }
  A Turner             }

Every master weaver or chief workman in that trade, working duly and
truly, shall have of wages for weaving of a cloth of what sort soever
after the rate of [_blank_] the day and every other ordinary workman of
that trade, working as aforesaid, shall have for weaving of a cloth of
what sort soever after the rate of [_blank_]; but they shall not take
their wages for every day that they shall be about the making of a
cloth, but only for so many days as good workmen of that trade following
their labour duly and painfully may, if they will, make such a cloth.

Every master tucker, following his labour duly and painfully, shall take
of wages by the week not above [_blank_], and every ordinary workman of
the same trade, following his labour as aforesaid, shall take of wages
by the week not above [_blank_]. Every woman spinner's wage shall be
such as, following her labour duly and painfully, she may make it
account to [_blank_] the day.

  James Mervin.
  Wm. Eyre.
  Edw. Penruddock.
  Jasper More.
  John Dauntsey.
  Alexander Tutt.
  Jo. Ernlle.
  James Ley.
  Henry Martyn.

[Footnote 289: A mistake for fifth (see No. 6).]


13. ASSESSMENT MADE BY THE JUSTICES OF WILTSHIRE, DEALING MAINLY WITH
TEXTILE WORKERS [_Hist. MSS. Com., Vol. I, pp. 167-168, The Records of
Quarter Sessions in the County of Wilts_], 1605.

_Wiltshire._--The declaration of the general rates of wages of servants,
labourers, artificers, handycraftsmen, weavers, spinsters, workmen and
workwomen within the foresaid county assessed and rated by the Justices
of the Peace of the foresaid county, whose hands and seals are hereunder
to these presents set, at the General Sessions of the Peace of the said
county holden at the Devizes in the said county the ninth day of April
in the year of the reign of our Sovereign Lord James by the grace of
God, etc...., according to the Statutes in that case made and provided.

_Imprimis_, that the rates of the wages of servants, labourers,
artificers, and handicraftsmen within the said county shall continue and
be for this year now next ensuing in all respects as they were rated and
assessed the last year next before.

_Item_ that the rates of wages of the weavers and spinsters shall be for
this year now next ensuing as follows, viz.:--

      A weaver for weaving a cloth of 700                      viis.
      And for every beer[290] above 700 and under 800           iid.
  700 A spinner for spinning of a pound of these
        sorts of warp shall have                                iid.
      And for a pound of abb spinning                        id. ob.
      _Item_ for weaving of a cloth of 800                    viiis.
      And for every beer above 800 and under 900            iid. ob.
  800 A spinner for spinning of a pound of these
        sorts of warp shall have                            iid. ob.
      And for a pound of abb                                 id. ob.
      For a weaving of a broad listed white of
        this making                                             ixs.
      For the hanking thereof                                  xiid.
      _Item_ for weaving of a cloth of 900                      ixs.
      For every beer above 900 and under 1000                  iiid.
  900 A spinner for spinning of a pound of these
        sorts of warp shall have                         iid. ob. q.
      For the spinning of a pound of abb of that
        sort                                              id. ob. q.
      And for every pound of abb wrought into
        a cloth above 54 and not above 60                      xiid.
        _Item_ for weaving of a cloth of 1000                    xs.
        For every beer above 1000 and under 1100              iiiid.
  1000 For every pound of abb above 54 and not
        above 60                                               xiid.
        For every pound of abb above 60                        xvid.
        A spinner for spinning of a pound of these
        sorts of warp shall have                           iiid. ob.
        And for a pound of abb                                  iid.
        _Item_ for weaving of a cloth of 1100 being
        narrow listed with 54_li_ of abb                       xiis.
        For every beer above 1100 and not above
        1200                                                    vid.
        For every pound of abb above 54 and
        not above 60                                         xviiid.
  1100 For every pound of abb above 60 pound                    xxd.
  and   A spinner for spinning a pound of these
  1200 sorts of warp shall have                               iiiid.
        And for a pound of abb                              iid. ob.
        For weaving of the broad listed whites of
        the three sorts of cloth next before
        mentioned                                        xiiis. vid.
        For the hanking of them                                xiid.

  James Mervin.
  Wa. Longe.
  Wm. Eyre.
  Jo. Ernele.
  Jaspar More.
  Edward Penrudock.
  H. Sadler.
  Jo. Dauntesey.
  John Hungerford.
  Wm. Bayles.
  Jo. Warneford.
  W. Blacker.
  Edw. Rede.
  Henry Martyn.
  G. Tooker.
  Anth. Hungerford.
  La. Hyde.

[Footnote 290: For the meaning of "beer" and "abb" see notes to document
No. 8.]


14. ADMINISTRATION OF THE WAGE CLAUSES OF THE STATUTE OF ARTIFICERS
[_Atkinson, North Riding Quarter Sessions, Vol. I, pp._ 27, 60, 69, 99,
105], 1605-8.

Jan. 17th, 1605. [Presented by the Jury.] John Bulmer of West Cottam,
husbandman, for hiring servants without recording their names and
salaries before the Chief Constable, _contra formam statuti_, etc., and
also Rob. Harrison and Will Keldell both of the same, for the like....

Helmesly, Jan. 8, 1606. The inhabitants of Thirkleby, (Great and
Little), for refusing to give the names of their servants and their
wages to the constables of the said town or to the Head Constables. The
inhabitants of Kilbornes, Over and Nether, for the like and for giving
their servants more wages than the statute doth allow.

Thomas Gibson, of Easingwold, for retaining and accepting into his
service one Will Thompson without shewing to the Head Officer, Curate or
Churchwarden any lawful testimonial.

Will Burnett, of Bawker, for refusing to pay pence for entering his
servants' names; Cuthbert Ivyson, of Awdwarke, husbandman, for retaining
Tim Johnson, servant, at husbandry for 46s., contrary to the rates
assessed by the Justices.

Thirske, April 14, 1607. Thomas Grange of East Harlesey, for refusing to
give a note of his servants and their wages.

Malton, Jan. 12, 1607. Jane Kay of Fawdington within the constabulary of
Bagby, for denying to give the names of her servants, nor tickets nor
rates of her servants.

Malton, Jan. 12, 1607. Alice Sharrow, of New Milnes in Seazey parish,
for taking more wages of Will Bell of Kascall than, etc.

Malton, Jan. 12, 1607. Thos. Wawne of Thorp Rawe, yeoman, for giving
wages to ... Rymer his servant, exceeding the rate set down by the
Justices.


15. ADMINISTRATION OF THE APPRENTICESHIP CLAUSES OF THE STATUTE OF
ARTIFICERS [_Atkinson, North Riding Quarter Sessions, Vol. I, pp._ 106
and 121], 1607-8.

Malton, Jan. 12, 1607. [Presented by the Jury.] Thomas Cooke, ...
webster, for trading, having never served vii years' apprentice....

Rob. Pybus of Beedall, for buying barley to malt to sell without
license, and also useth the trade of malting, he being a very young man,
unmarried, which is contrary to the statute.

Helmesley, July 12, 1608. Rob. Richardson of Sawdon, carpenter, for
using that trade, having been but two years apprentice.

Fr. Storry of Gristropp, carpenter, for retaining one John Milborne and
John Palmer as apprentices without indenture.


16. THE ORGANISATION OF THE WOOLLEN INDUSTRY[291] [_S.P.D. James I,
Vol._ LXXX, 13], 1615.

The breeders of wool in all countries are of three sorts--

1. First those that are men of great estate, having both grounds and
stock of their own, and are beforehand in wealth. These can afford to
delay the selling of their wools and to stay the clothiers' leisure for
the payment to increase the price. The number of these is small.

2. Those that do rent the king's, noblemen's and gents' grounds and deal
as largely as either their stock or credit will afford. These are many
and breed great store of wool; most of them do usually either sell their
wools beforehand, or promise the refusal of them for money which they
borrowed at the spring of the year to buy them sheep to breed the wool,
they then having need of money to pay their Lady-day rent and to double
their stock upon the ground as the spring time requireth, and at that
time the clothiers disburse their stock in yams to lay up in stock
against hay-time and harvest when their spinning fails. So that then
farmers and clothiers have greatest want of money at one time.

3. The general number of husbandmen in all the wool countries that have
small livings, whereof every one usually hath some wool, though not
much. They are many in numbers in all countries and have great store of
wool, though in small parcels. Many of these also do borrow money of the
wool merchant to buy sheep to stock their commons. Their parcels being
so small, the times of selling so divers, the distance of place so great
between the clothier and them, it would be their undoing to stay the
clothier's leisure for the time of their sale, or to be subject to him
for the price....

These wools are usually converted by four sorts of people.

1. The rich clothier that buyeth his wool of the grower in the wool
countries, and makes his whole year's provision beforehand and lays it
up in store, and in the winter time hath it spun by his own spinsters
and woven by his own weavers and fulled by his own tuckers, and all at
the lowest rate for wages. These clothiers could well spare the wool
buyers that they might likewise have wool at their own prices, and the
rather because many of them be brogging clothiers and sell again very
much, if not most, of the wool they buy.

2. The second is the meaner clothier that seldom or never travels into
the wool country to buy his wool, but borrows the most part of it at the
market, and sets many poor on work, clothes it presently, and sells his
cloth in some countries upon the bare thread, as in Devonshire and
Yorkshire, and others dress it and sell it in London for ready money,
and then comes to the wool market and pays the old debt and borrows
more. Of this sort there are great store, that live well and grow rich
and set thousands on work; they cannot miss the wool chapman, for if
they do they must presently put off all their workfolk, and become
servants to the rich clothier for 4d. or 6d. a day, which is a poor
living.

3. The third sort are such clothiers that have not stock enough to
bestow, some in wool and some in yarn, and to forbear some in cloth as
the rich clothiers do, and they buy but little or no wool, but do weekly
buy their yarn in the markets, and presently make it into cloth and sell
it for ready money, and so buy yarn again; which yarn is weekly brought
into the markets by a great number of poor people that will not spin to
the clothier for small wages; but have stock enough to set themselves on
work, and do weekly buy their wool in the market by very small parcels
according to their use and weekly return it in yarn, and make good
profit thereof, having their benefit both of their labour and of the
merchandise, and live exceeding well. These yarn-makers are so many in
number that it is supposed by men of judgment that more than half the
cloths that are made in Wilts, Gloucester, and Somersetshire is made by
the means of these yarn-makers and poor clothiers that depend weekly
upon the wool chapman, which serves them weekly with wool either for
money or credit.

4. The fourth sort is of them of the new drapery, which are thousands of
poor people inhabiting near the ports and coasts from Yarmouth to
Plymouth and in many great cities and towns, as London, Norwich,
Colchester, Canterbury, Southampton, Exeter and many others. These
people by their great industry and skill do spend a great part of the
coarse wools growing in the kingdom, and that at as high a price or
higher than the clothiers do the finest wools of this country, as
appeareth by a particular hereunto annexed....

[Footnote 291: Quoted Unwin, _Industrial Organization in the Sixteenth
and Seventeenth Centuries_, App. A, II.]


17. PROCEEDINGS ON APPRENTICESHIP CLAUSES OF 5 ELIZ., c. 4 [_Reports of
Special Cases Touching Several Customs and Liberties of the City of
London, collected by Sir H. Calthrop_, 1655], 1615.

_Hil._ 12, _Iac._ 1 [Tolley's case]. It was agreed and resolved that an
upholsterer is not a trade within that Stat. For first it is not a trade
that is mentioned in any of the branches of the Statute, howsoever in
all parts of the Statute there is mention made of 61 several trades and
misteries. And if the artizans which at that time were assistants unto
the committees for the expressing of all manner of trades had thought
that the trade of an upholsterer had been such a trade that required art
and skill for the encouraging of it, they would not have failed to make
mention of it.... Thirdly the trade of an upholsterer doth not require
any art or skill for the exercizing of it, inasmuch as he hath all
things made to his hand, and it is only to dispose them in order after
such time as they are brought to him ... and so he is like Aesop's bird
which borroweth of every bird a feather, his art resting merely in the
overseeing and disposition of such things which other men work, and in
the putting of feathers into tick, and sewing them up when he hath done,
the which one that hath been an apprentice unto it but seven days is
able to perform. And the intent of this Statute was not to extend unto
any other trade but such as required art and skill for the managing of
them; and therefore it was adjudged in the Exchequer upon an information
against one [space] in the 42nd year of the late Queen Eliz. that a
costermonger was not a trade intended by the Statute of 5 Eliz., because
his art was in the selling of apples, which required no skill or
experience for the exercise of it. So an husbandman, tankardbearer,
brickmaker, porter, miller, and such like trades are not within the
Statute of 5 Eliz., cap 4, so as none may exercize them but such a one
as hath been an apprentice by the space of 7 years; for they are arts
which require ability of body rather than skill.


18. A PETITION TO FIX WAGES ADDRESSED TO THE JUSTICES BY THE TEXTILE
WORKERS OF WILTSHIRE [_Historical MSS. Commission, Vol. I, p. 94. The
Records of Quarter Sessions in the County of Wilts._], 1623.

May it please you to be informed of the distressed estate of most of
the weavers, spinners, and others that work on the making of woollen
clothes, that are not able by their diligent labours to get their
livings, by reason that the clothiers at their will have made their work
extreme hard, and abated wages what they please. And some of them make
such their workfolks to do their household businesses, to trudge in
their errands, spool their chains, twist their list, do every command,
without giving them bread, drink, or money for many days' labour. May it
please you therefore, for the redressing of these enormities done by the
clothiers, to appoint certain grave and discreet persons to view the
straitness of works, to assess rates for wages according to the desert
of their works, now especially in this great dearth of corn, that the
poor artificers of these works of woollen cloth may not perish for want
of food, while they are painful in their callings, so shall many
families be bound to pray for your worships' happiness and eternal
felicity.

_Order signed by nine justices._

The petitioners to set down their names to this petition, and the place
of their dwelling, and the clothiers dwelling next to the places of
their habitations to be warned to be at Devizes the Thursday in the next
Whitsun week, to confer with us hereabouts, that they call others
grieved herein to attend us at that time.[292]

[Footnote 292: The final result of the meeting was that the Justices
ordered the rates fixed to be published on market day at Devizes.]


19. APPOINTMENT BY PRIVY COUNCIL OF COMMISSIONERS TO INVESTIGATE
GRIEVANCES OF TEXTILE WORKERS IN EAST ANGLIA [_Privy Council Register.
Charles I, Vol. 6, pp. 350-1_], 1630.

At Whitehall the 16th February, 1630.

Present:

  Lord Treasurer.
  Lord Privy Seal
  Lord High Chamberlain.
  Earl Marshall.
  Earl of Dorset.
  Lord V. Dorchester.
  Lord V. Wentworth.
  Lord V. Falkland.
  Lord Bishop of Winton.
  Lord Newburgh.
  Mr. Treasurer.
  Mr. Comptroller.
  Mr. Secretary Coke.

Whereas a petition was this day presented to the Board by Sylvia
Harbert, widow, on the behalf of herself and divers others, showing that
the poor spinsters, weavers and combers of wool in Sudbury and the
places near adjoining thereunto, in the counties of Suffolk and Essex,
are of late by the clothiers there (who are now grown rich by the
labours of the said poor people) so much abridged of their former and
usual wages, that they (who in times past maintained their families in
good sort) are now in such distress by the abatement of their wages in
these times of scarcity and dearth, that they are constrained to sell
their beds, wheels and working tools for want of bread, as by the
petition itself doth more at large appear, wherein the petitioners
humbly sought to be relieved by some directions from this Board:--their
Lordships upon consideration had thereof, have thought fit and ordered
that the petition being first signed by the Clerk of the Council
attendant shall be recommended to Sir Robert Crane, Bart., Sir Thomas
Wiseman, Sir William Maxey, Sir Drewe Deane, Kt., Thomas Eden, Doctor of
the Civil Law, Henry Gent, Esq., and Robert Warren, Justices of the
Peace of the counties aforesaid, Richard Skinner and Benjamin Fisher,
Aldermen of Sudbury, or to any four of them, whereof one Justice of the
Peace of each county, and one of the said aldermen, to be three, who are
hereby authorised and required to call before them such persons on
either side, as they think fittest to inform them of the true state of
these complaints, and thereupon to settle such a course for the relief
of the petitioners by causing just and orderly payment to be made them
of their due and accustomed wages, as that they may have no further
cause to complain, nor the Board be further troubled herewithall. And in
case any particular person shall be found (either out of the hardness of
his heart towards the poor, or out of private ends or humours)
refractory to such courses as the said commissioners shall think
reasonable and just, that then they bind over every such person to
answer the same before the Board.


20. REPORT TO PRIVY COUNCIL OF COMMISSIONERS APPOINTED ABOVE[293]
[_S.P.D. Charles I, Vol. 189, No. 40_], 1630.

Right Honourable and our very good Lord,

We have according to your lordship's order from the Council Board, dated
the 16th day of February, 1630, under the hand of the Clerk of the
Council, called before us the saymakers, spinsters, weavers and combers,
of Sudbury and the towns adjoining, and have examined the cause of the
saymakers abating the wages of the spinsters, weavers and combers; and
asking the saymakers why they did so abate, their answer was that all of
that trade in other parts of the Kingdom did the like; but if it might
be reformed in all other parts, they were content to give such wages as
we should set down. Whereupon we did order, with the good liking of all
parties, as in this enclosed paper is set down. We therefore humbly pray
your lordships that the like order may be taken throughout all the
kingdom with men of that trade, by way of His Majesty's proclamation, or
any other order which may seem best to your lordships' wisdoms; for if
the like order be not more general than to Sudbury and the towns
adjacent, it must necessarily be their ruin and utter undoing. And so
commending the same to your lordships' further direction, we humbly
rest, your lordships' in all services to be commanded.

This xxvith of April, 1631.

  Tho. Wyseman.
  Willi. Maxey.
  Dra Deane.
  He. Gent.
  R. Wareyn.
  Richard Skynner.
  Ben Fissher.

  _Endorsed_,

  27 April, 1631.

from the Justices of the Peace in the county of Essex concerning the
Saymakers, Spinsters, Weavers and Combers of Sudbury.

_Essex._ An order made at our meeting at Halsted in the said county the
eighth day of April Anno domini 1631 by virtue of an order from the
Lords of the Council.

It is ordered and agreed upon by us whose names are hereunder written,
that the saymakers within the town of Sudbury in Suffolk shall pay unto
the spinsters for spinning of every seven knots, one penny, and to have
no deduction of their wages, and that the reel whereon the yarn is
reeled to be a yard in length, and no longer, and we do further order,
that for all the white sayes under five pounds weight the saymaker shall
give unto the weaver twelve pence the pound for the weaving thereof, and
for the sayes that shall be above five pounds and under ten pounds to
give twelve pence the pound, abating six pence in the piece for the
weaving thereof, and for the mingled sayes containing eight or nine
pounds, nine shillings, and so proportionably as it shall contain more
or less in weight. This our order to continue until the 15th day of May
next ensuing, except from the Council there shall be other order taken.

  Thos. Wyseman.
  Willi. Maxey.
  Dra. Deane.
  R. Wareyn.
  Ri. Skynner.
  Beniamine Fissher.

[Footnote 293: No. 19.]


21. HIGH WAGES IN THE NEW WORLD [_Winthrop's Journal, Vol. II, p. 220_],
1645.

The war in England kept servants from coming to us, so as those we had
could not be hired, when their times were out, but upon unreasonable
terms, and we found it very difficult to pay their wages to their
content (for money was very scarce). I may upon this occasion report a
passage between one Rowley and his servant. The master, being forced to
sell a pair of his oxen to pay a servant his wages, told his servant he
could keep him no longer, not knowing how to pay him the next year. The
servant answered he would serve him for more of his cattle. 'But how
shall I do' (saith the master) 'when all my cattle are gone?' The
servant replied, 'You shall then serve me, and so you may have your
cattle again.'


22. YOUNG MEN AND MAIDS ORDERED TO ENTER SERVICE [_Hist. MSS. Com., Vol.
I., p. 132_], 1655.

At an adjourned sessions on 5 June an order was made that, whereas the
rate of wages fixed for servants and labourers had been proclaimed, but
young people, both men and maids, fitting for service, will not go
abroad to service without they may have excessive wages, but will rather
work at home at their own hands, whereby the rating of wages will take
little effect, therefore no young men or maids fitting to go abroad to
service (their parents not being of ability to keep them) shall remain
at home, but shall with all convenient speed betake themselves to
service for the wages aforesaid, which if they refuse to do the Justices
shall proceed against them.


23. REQUEST TO JUSTICES OF GRAND JURY OF WORCESTERSHIRE TO ASSESS WAGES
[_Hist. MSS. Com., Vol. I, p. 322_], 1661.

Presentments by the Grand Jury. 1661, Ap. 23. We desire that the
overseers of parishes may not be hereafter compelled to provide houses
for such young persons as will marry before they have provided
themselves with a settling. We desire that servants' wages may be rated
according to the statute, for we find the unreasonableness of servants'
wages a great grievance so that the servants are grown so proud and idle
that the master cannot be known from the servant except it be because
the servant wears better clothes than his master.[294] We desire that
the statute for setting poor men's children to apprenticeship be more
duly observed, for we find the usual course is that if any are
apprenticed it is to some petty trade, and when they have served their
apprenticeship they are not able to live by their trades, whereby not
being bred to labour they are not fit for husbandry. We therefore desire
that such children may be set to husbandry for the benefit of tillage
and the good of the commonwealth.

[Footnote 294: The last clause is scratched through in the original.]


24. PROCEEDINGS ON APPRENTICESHIP CLAUSES OF STATUTE OF ARTIFICERS[295]
[_Privy Council Register, Oct. 29, 1669_].

Upon reading this day at the board the humble Petition of Francis
Kiderbey of Framlingham ... draper, setting forth that he served his
apprenticeship for 7 years in the City of London to a Tailor, whereby he
came to the knowledge and skill of all sorts of cloth, and used and
exercised the same for a long time; that the petitioner's occasions
calling him to live in Framlingham aforesaid, and that town wanting one
that dealt in cloth, the petitioner set up a shop for selling the same,
and thereby got a good livelihood for himself and family; yet some, out
of malice, hath caused three bills of Indictment to be presented against
him at the sessions held at Woodbridge for that county upon the Statute
made 5 Eliz. c. 4, whereby it is provided that none shall use any manual
occupations but he that hath been bound seven years an apprentice to
the same, which Statute, though not repealed, yet has been by most of
the Judges looked upon as inconvenient to trade and to the increase of
inventions; that the Petitioner hath removed the said indictments into
the Court of King's Bench, where judgment will be given against him,
that statute being still in force, and therefore praying that his
Majesty will be pleased to give order to his Attorney-General to enter a
_non prosequi_ for stopping proceedings against him. It was ordered by
his Majesty in Council that it be and it is hereby referred to Mr.
Attorney-General to examine the truth of the Petitioner's case, and upon
consideration thereof to report to his Majesty in Council his opinion
thereupon, and how far he conceives it may be fit for his Majesty to
gratify the Petitioner in his said request.

[On Dec. 17, 1669, the Attorney-General reported that Kiderbey was
liable to the penalty of the Statute, but that the indictments being in
the King's name, his Majesty might order a _non processe_ to be entered;
which was ordered to be done.]

[Footnote 295: Quoted Unwin, _Industrial Organization in the Sixteenth
and Seventeenth Centuries_, App. A, VII.]



SECTION IV

THE RELIEF OF THE POOR AND THE REGULATION OF PRICES

   1. Regulations made at Chester as to Beggars, 1539--2. A Proclamation
   Concerning Corn and Grain to be brought into open Markets to be sold,
   1545--3. Administration of Poor Relief at Norwich, 1571--4. The first
   Act Directing the Levy of a Compulsory Poor Rate, 1572--5. The first
   Act Requiring the Unemployed to be set to Work, 1575-6--6. Report of
   Justices to Council Concerning Scarcity in Norfolk, 1586--7. Orders
   devised by the Special Commandment of the Queen's Majesty for the
   Relief and Ease of the Present Dearth of Grain Within the Realm,
   1586--8. The Poor Law Act of 1601--9. A note of the Grievances of the
   Parish of Eldersfield, 1618--10. Petition to Justices of Wiltshire
   for Permission to Settle in a Parish, 1618--11. Letter from Privy
   Council to Justices of Cloth-making Counties, 1621-2--12. Letter from
   Privy Council to the Deputy Lieutenants and Justices of the Peace in
   the Counties of Suffolk and Essex concerning the Employment of the
   Poor, 1629--13. The Licensing of Badgers in Somersetshire, 1630--14.
   Badgers Licensed at Somersetshire Quarter Sessions, 1630--15. The
   Supplying of Bristol with Grain, 1630-1--16. Proceedings against
   Engrossers and other Offenders, 1631--17. Order of Somersetshire
   Justices Granting a Settlement to a Labourer, 1630-1--18. Report of
   Derbyshire Justices on their Proceedings, 1631--19. Letter from Privy
   Council to Justices of Rutlandshire, 1631--20. Judgment in the Star
   Chamber against an Engrosser of Corn, 1631.


The national system of Poor Relief which was built up in the course of
the sixteenth century was composed of three elements, experiments of
municipal authorities, Parliamentary legislation, supervision and
stimulus supplied by the Privy Council. The first step taken by towns
was usually to organize begging by granting licences to certain
authorized beggars, while punishing the idler (No. 1); the next to
provide establishments where necessitous persons could be set to work on
materials provided at the public expense (No. 3). The action of the
State followed the same lines of development. During the first three
quarters of the sixteenth century it (_a_) left the provision of the
funds needed for relief to private charity, (_b_) directed the relief of
the "impotent poor," but treated all able-bodied persons in one
category, that of "sturdy rogues." But in 1572 it recognized the
inadequacy of voluntary contributions by directing the levy of a
compulsory poor rate (No. 4), and in 1576 made the important innovation
of discriminating between persons unemployed because they could not get
work and persons unemployed because they did not want work, by enacting
that the former should be set to work on materials provided for them,
and that the latter should be committed to the House of Correction (No.
5). The system was completed by the Act for the Relief of the Poor of
1601 (No. 8). Its administration was in the hands of the Justices of the
Peace, who were much occupied with questions of settlement (Nos. 9, 10,
17), with carrying out instructions sent to them by the Privy Council
for relieving distress (Nos. 12 and 19), and with making reports to the
Privy Council of their proceedings (No. 18).

The provision of relief was never intended to be, and down to 1640 was
not, the sole method of coping with problems of distress. It was in its
origin associated with measures of a preventive character, attempts to
prevent the eviction of peasants (Part II, Section I, Nos. 9, 10, 13-17,
20 and 21), occasional attempts to raise wages (Part II, section III,
Nos. 10, 18, 19 and 20), attempts to prevent employers dismissing
workpeople in times of trade depression (No. 11), attempts to regulate
the price of food stuffs and to secure adequate supplies for the markets
(Nos. 2, 6, 7, 13, 14, 15, 16, 20). In the latter matter, as in many
others, the Tudor governments tried to make a regularly administered
national system out of what had for centuries been the practices of
local bodies. The Justices of the Peace were required in 1545 to inspect
barns and to compel the owners of supplies of grain to sell it in open
market (No. 3). Under Elizabeth the system was elaborated. The Justices
from time to time made returns to the Privy Council of the stocks of
grain available (No. 6), and of the prices ruling (No. 18); and
extremely detailed instructions for their guidance were drawn up by
Burleigh in 1586 (No. 7). The licensing of "Badgers," or dealers in
corn, was part of their regular business (Nos. 13 and 14); the movement
of grain from one district to another was carefully supervised (No. 15);
and engrossers and regrators were frequently brought before them (No.
16). The efficiency of the system depended very largely on the close
supervision of local government and economic affairs by the Privy
Council, and on the fact that offenders against public policy could be
tried before the Court of Star Chamber. One case before that Court is
printed below (No. 20). It is interesting as showing both the economic
ideas upon which the policy of regulating prices was based, and the way
in which attempts to supervise economic relationships brought the
government into collision with the interests of the middle and
commercial classes.


AUTHORITIES

   The only modern English writer who deals adequately with the subject
   of this section is Miss E.M. Leonard, _The Early History of English
   Poor Relief_. Short accounts of different aspects of the subject are
   given by Cunningham, _English Industry and Commerce, Modern Times_,
   Part I; Ashley, _Economic History_, Chap. V; Nicholls, _History of
   the Poor Law_; Rogers, _Six Centuries of Work and Wages_; Tawney,
   _The Agrarian Problem in the Sixteenth Century_; Gasquet, _Henry VIII
   and the English Monasteries_; _Oxford Historical and Literary
   Studies_, I, _Elizabethan Rogues and Vagabonds and their
   Representation in Contemporary Literature_, by Frank Aydelotte;
   _Oxford Studies in Social and Legal History_, Vol. III, _One Hundred
   Years of Poor Law Administration in a Warwickshire Village_, by A.W.
   Ashby. The student may also consult the following:--

   (1) _Documentary authorities_:--Municipal Records (see bibliographies
   and references under section II) and Quarter Sessions Records (see
   bibliographies and references under section III); the Statutes of the
   Realm, Acts of the Privy Council, Calendars of State Papers Domestic,
   especially under Elizabeth; Reports of the Historical Manuscripts
   Commission, especially Vol. I (containing Quarter Sessions
   Proceedings of Wiltshire and Worcestershire), the volumes containing
   a report on the papers of the Marquis of Salisbury (in particular
   Part VII), and a report on the papers of the Marquis of Lothian (pp.
   76-80).

   (2) Reference to questions of pauperism and prices will be found in
   contemporary literary authorities set out under section I, in
   particular in the works of More, Crowley, Lever, Stubbes, Harrison,
   Bacon and Moore, and in the Commonwealth of this realm of England.
   Awdeley, Fraternity of Vagabonds (1561, Early English Text Society),
   gives an amusing account of the habits of vagrants.


1. REGULATIONS MADE AT CHESTER AS TO BEGGARS [_Morris. Chester in the
Plantagenet and Tudor Reigns, pp. 355, 356_], 1539.

Henry Gee, Mayor, 31 Henry VIII. [1539]. Forasmuch as by reason of the
great number of multitude of valiant idle persons and vagabonds which be
strong and able to serve and labour for their livings, and yet daily go
on begging within the same city, so that the poor impotent and indigent
people and inhabiting within the same city and having no other means to
get their living but only by the charitable alms of good Christian
people daily want and be destitute of the same, to the great displeasure
of Almighty God and contrary to good conscience and the wholesome
statute and laws of our sovereign Lord the King in such case made and
provided; for reformation whereof it is ordained and established by the
said city ... that the number and names of all indigent and needy
mendicant people shall be searched, known and written, and thereupon
divided in xv parts, and every of them assigned to what ward they shall
resort and beg within the said city, and in no other place within the
same, and their names to be written in a bill and set up in every man's
house within every ward for knowledge to whom they shall give their alms
and to no other. And if any other person or persons come to any man or
woman's door, house or person to beg, not having his name in the bill
within that man's or woman's houses, then the same man or woman to give
unto the same beggar no manner alms or relief but rather to bring or
send him to the stocks within the same ward, or else to deliver him to
the constable of the same ward or the alderman's deputy within the same
ward, and he to put him in the stocks, there to remain by the space of
a day and a night; and yet, every man and woman that shall offend in
using themselves contrary to this ordinance concerning such valiant
beggars shall for every such offence forfeit xiid., to be levied to the
use of the common box by the commandment of the alderman of the same
ward, and for default of payment thereof the same man or woman so
offending to be committed to the ward by the mayor till it be paid.

And if any of the indigent and poor needy beggars [beg] at any time in
any other place within this city out of the ward to them assigned as is
aforesaid, then the same beggar so offending to be punished by the
mayor's discretion. And further it is ordered that all manner of idle
persons, being able to labour abiding within the said city and not
admitted to live by alms within the said city, shall every workday in
the morning in the time of winter at vi of the clock, and in time of
summer at iiii of the clock, resort and come unto the high cross of the
said city, and there to offer themselves to be hired to labour for their
living according to the king's laws and his statutes provided for
labourers; and if any person or persons do refuse so to do, then he or
they so refusing to be committed to ward by the mayor of the said city
for the time being, there to remain unto such time he or they so
refusing hath found sufficient sureties to be bound by recognisance
before the said mayor in a certain sum, so to [do] accordingly to the
King's laws and statutes aforesaid.


2. A PROCLAMATION ... CONCERNING CORN AND GRAIN TO BE CONVEYED AND
BROUGHT INTO OPEN MARKETS TO BE SOLD [_Br. M. Harleian MSS. 442, fo._
211][296], 1545.

Forasmuch as it is come to the knowledge of our Sovereign Lord the King,
how that divers persons, as well his own subjects as others, having more
respect to their own private lucre and advantage than to the common weal
of this his Highness's realm, have by divers and sundry means
accumulated and got into their hands and possession a great number and
multitude of corn and grain, far above the necessary finding of their
households, sowing of their lands, paying their rent-corn and performing
of their lawful bargains of corn without fraud or intrigue; and the
same of their covetous minds do wilfully detain and keep in their
possessions without bringing any part or parcel thereof into any market
to be sold, intending thereby for to cause the prices of corn to rise,
so that they may sell their corn and grain at such unreasonable prices
as they will themselves; by reason whereof the prices of corn and grains
... be raised to such excessive and high prices, that his Majesty's
loving subjects cannot gain with their great labours and pains
sufficient to pay for their convenient victuals and sustenance, and
worse are like to be hereafter, unless speedy remedy be provided in that
behalf; his Highness, therefore, by the advice of his said most
honourable council, and by authority of the said act of parliament made
in the said 31st year of his Majesty's reign, straightly chargeth and
commandeth all justices of peace ... within 20 days next ensuing the
publishing of this proclamation according to the said act, and oftener
after that by their discretions, to assemble themselves together ... and
that the said justices ... or two of them at the least, shall with all
convenient speed search the houses, barns and yards of such persons as
have been accustomed or used to sell corn and grain, and have abundance
of corn and grain more than shall be necessary for the sowing of their
lands, paying their rent-corn, performing their said lawful bargains of
corn, and finding of their houses until the feast of All Saints next
coming; and where they shall find any such abundance or surplus, shall
by their discretions straightly ... command in the name of our said
sovereign lord the king the owner or owners thereof to convey and bring
or cause to be brought such part and portion of their said corn and
grain unto the market or markets there near adjoining, or to have such
other market or markets, where they afore time have used or accustomed
to sell their corn there to be sold at, and during such time as shall be
thought meet by the said justices of the peace or two of them at the
least; the same justices delivering unto every of the said owner and
owners a bill subscribed with their hands, mentioning and declaring the
days, places, number and certainty of the bringing of the said corn and
grain to the said market and markets to be sold, as is aforesaid,
according to their said commandments and appointments; and if any person
or persons do wilfully refuse to convey or bring or cause to be brought
unto the said market or markets to be sold such part or portion of any
such corn and grain as by the said justices or two of them at the least,
shall be to him and them limited and appointed as is aforesaid, that
then every such person and persons so offending shall lose and forfeit
for every bushel ... 3s. and 4d. ... This proclamation to continue and
endure until the feast of All Saints next coming and no longer....

[Footnote 296: Quoted Schanz, _op. cit._, Vol. II, pp. 669-671.]


3. ADMINISTRATION OF POOR RELIEF AT NORWICH [_Leonard, Early History of
English Poor Relief, pp. 311-314_], 1571.

[It is ordered] 1. First, that no person or persons old or young shall
be suffered to go abroad after a general warning given, or be found
a-begging in the streets at the sermon or at any man's door or at any
place within the city, in pain of six stripes with a whip.

2. That not any person or persons shall sustain or feed any such beggars
at their doors, in pain of such fine as is appointed by statute, and
further to pay for every time fourpence, to be collected by the deacons,
and to go to the use of the poor of the said City.

3. Item that at the house called the Normans in the convenientest place
therefore, shall be appointed a working place, as well for men as for
women, viz. for the men to be prepared fourteen malt querns to grind
malt and such exercises; and for the women to spin and card and such
like exercises.

Which working place shall contain to set twelve persons or more upon
work, which persons shall be kept as prisoners to work for meat and
drink for the space of twenty and one days at the least, and longer if
cause serve, and they shall not eat but as they can earn (except some
friend will be bound for them), that the city shall no more be troubled
with them; with this proviso that such persons as shall be thither
committed shall be such as be able to work and daily notwithstanding
will not work but rather beg, or be without master or husband, or else
be vagabonds or loiterers.

Which persons shall begin their works at five of the clock in summer,
viz. from our Lady the Annunciation until Michelmas, and shall end their
works at eight of the clock at night, and in Winter to begin at six of
the clock from Michelmas to our Lady, and to end at seven of the clock
at night or half an hour past, with the allowance of one half hour or
more to eat and a quarter of an hour to spend in prayer.

And every one sent thither shall be by warrant from the mayor or his
deputy or deputies to the bailiff there, upon which warrant the bailiff
shall be bound to receive everyone so sent and set them a-work.

And those that shall refuse to do their works to them appointed or keep
their hours, to be punished by the whip at the discretion of the wardens
or bailiff of the house.

       *       *       *       *       *

For the bailiff of Bridewell.

Item, upon the said authority be also appointed another officer, to be
called the bailiff of Bridewell, who is also to be resident there with
his wife and family, who shall take the charge by inventory from the
wardens of all bedding and other utensils delivered unto him to the use
of the workfolks, who shall yearly account with the wardens for the
same.

And also shall take charge of such vagabonds, men and women, as to them
shall be committed, enforcing them to work by the hours aforesaid. The
men to grind malt and other works, and the women to use their hand-deed
and, except that they work, not to eat.

And to take of them for their victual, and fuel, or other necessaries as
the price shall be rated and there set up. And to allow them for their
work by the pound (or otherwise) as shall be rated and set up, and shall
use such correction as is aforesaid.

And also shall receive all stuff thither brought and see the same truly
and well used and safely delivered.

And he to provide him of such servants as in his absence or his wife's
shall see the works done as it ought to be, and to do the house
business, as washing, making of beds, baking and also to be expert in
hand-deed to spin, card, etc.

And also to provide one officer surveyor, to go daily about the city,
with a staff in his hand, to arrest whom that is apt for Bridewell and
bring them to master mayor or to any of the committees be commanded
thither.

And as he goeth abroad he shall certify how the works in every ward are
ordered and occupied, and shall inform master mayor, the committees or
his master thereof.

And he shall resort to the deacons in every ward, and be aiding unto
them to bring such as be new comers into the city to master mayor, the
same presently to be sent away again to the place they came from. And
likewise shall bring all disordered persons to be punished to Bridewell
if such shall dwell in any ward, and shall give his whole attendance
thereupon.

And the said bailiff shall be allowed for himself, his wife, servants
and surveyors, (if he shall be charged with his whole number of
prisoners,) for meat, drink and wages thirty pounds by year, whereof he
shall pay forty shillings a year to a priest to minister service to them
twice a week, or else, if he have less charge, to have after the rate as
by the discretion of the committees and wardens of Bridewell shall be
thought convenient or as they can agree....

       *       *       *       *       *

Orders for children and others in wards.

Item, that there be also appointed by the committees or commissioners
for every single ward so many select women as shall suffice to receive
of persons within that ward, viz. of women, maidens or children that
shall be appointed unto them by the committees or deacons, to work or
learn letters in their house or houses, of the most poorest children
whose parents are not able to pay for their learning or of women and
maids that live idly or be disordered to the number of six, eight, ten
or twelve at the most in any one of their houses.

The same to be driven to work and learn, by the hours appointed in
Bridewell and with such corrections, till their hands be brought into
such use and their bodies to such pains as labour and learning shall be
easier to them than idleness, and as they shall of themselves be able to
live of their own works with their families as others do.

And every such select woman appointed to take charge of such aforesaid,
shall see that such as to them be committed shall do their works truly
and workmanly and be learned profitably, or else to lay sharp correction
upon them; and every such select woman doing her duty to teach or cause
to be taught or set a-work, to have for her pains in that behalf twenty
shillings by year every one of them so appointed and nominated.

And whosoever select woman so appointed shall refuse the same being
thereunto appointed, shall suffer imprisonment by the space of twenty
days at the least.


4. THE FIRST ACT DIRECTING THE LEVY OF A COMPULSORY POOR RATE [_14 Eliz.
c._ 5. _Statutes of the Realm, Vol. IV, Part I, pp. 590-98_], 1572.

... And when the number of the said poor people forced to live upon alms
be by that means truly known, the said justices, mayors, sheriffs,
bailiffs and other officers shall within like convenient time devise and
appoint, within every their said several divisions, meet and convenient
places by their discretions to settle the same poor people for their
habitations and abidings, if the parish within the which they shall be
found shall not or will not provide for them; and shall also within like
convenient time number all the said poor people within their said
several limits, and thereupon (having regard to the number) set down
what portion the weekly charge towards the relief and sustentation of
the said poor people will amount unto within every their said several
divisions and limits; and that done, they ... shall by their good
discretions tax and assess all and every the inhabitants, dwelling in
all and every city, borough, town, village, hamlet and place known
within the said limits and divisions, to such weekly charge as they and
every of them shall weekly contribute towards the relief of the said
poor people, and the names of all such inhabitants taxed shall also
enter into the said register book together with their taxation, and also
shall by their discretion within every their said divisions and limits
appoint or see collectors for one whole year to be appointed of the said
weekly portion, which shall collect and gather the said proportion, and
make delivery of so much thereof, according to the discretion of the
said justices ... and other officers, to the said poor people, as the
said justices ... and other officers shall appoint them: and also shall
appoint the overseers of the said poor people by their discretions, to
continue also for one whole year; and if they do refuse to be overseers,
then every of them so refusing to forfeit ten shillings for every such
default.


5. THE FIRST ACT REQUIRING THE UNEMPLOYED TO BE SET TO WORK [_18 Eliz.
c. 3. Statutes of the Realm, Vol. IV, Part I, pp. 610-13_], 1575-6.

... Also to the intent youth may be accustomed and brought up in labour
and work, and thus not like to grow to be idle rogues, and to the intent
also that such as be already grown up in idleness and so [be] rogues at
this present, may not have any just excuse in saying that they cannot
get any service or work, and then without any favour or toleration
worthy to be executed, and that other poor and needy persons being
willing to work may be set on work: be it ordered and enacted by the
authority aforesaid, that in every city and town corporate within this
realm, a competent store and stock of wool, hemp, flax, iron or other
stuff, by the appointment and order of the mayor, bailiffs, justices or
other head officers having rule in the said cities or towns corporate
(of themselves and all others the inhabitants within their several
authorities to be taxed, levied and gathered), shall be provided....
Collectors and governors of the poor from time to time (as cause
requireth) shall and may, of the same stock and store, deliver to such
poor and needy person a competent portion to be wrought into yarn or
other matter within such time and in such sort as in discretions shall
be from time to time limited and prefixed, and the same afterwards,
being wrought, to be from time to time delivered to the said collectors
and governors of the poor, for which they shall make payment to them
which work the same according to the desert of the work, and of new
deliver more to be wrought; and so from time to time to deliver stuff
unwrought and receive the same again wrought as often as cause shall
require; which hemp, wool, flax or other stuff wrought from time to
time, shall be sold by the said collectors and governors of the poor
either at some market or other place, and at such time as they shall
think meet, and with the money coming of the sale, to buy more stuff in
such wise as the stocks or store shall not be decayed in value....


6. REPORT OF JUSTICES TO COUNCIL CONCERNING SCARCITY IN NORFOLK[297]
[_S.P.D. Eliz., Vol. 191, No. 12_], 1586.

May it please your honours, after the remembrance of our humble duties
to be advertized; that for a further proceeding in the accomplishment of
your honourable letters concerning the furnishing of the markets with
corn, we have according to our former letters of the ixth of June last,
met here together this day for conference therein. And perusing all our
notes and proceedings together, we find that throughout this shire by
such order as we have taken with owners and farmers and also badgers and
buyers of corn and grain, the markets are by them plentifully served
every market day with corn, and the same sold at reasonable rates, viz.
wheat at xxiis., the quarter, rye at xvis., malt at xiiiis., and barley at
xiis., of which kinds of corn the poorer sort are by persuasion served
at meaner prices. And so we doubt not but it shall likewise continue
according to our direction until it shall please God that new corn may
be used. And hereof thinking it best in performance of our duties to
advertize your honours, we humbly take our leave. From Attlebrigge the
xith of July 1586.

Your ho: humble at commandment ...

[Signature of Justices.]

[Footnote 297: Quoted Leonard, _Early History of English Poor Relief_,
pp. 316-17.]


7. ORDERS DEVISED BY THE SPECIAL COMMANDMENT OF THE QUEEN'S MAJESTY FOR
THE RELIEF AND EASE OF THE PRESENT DEARTH OF GRAIN WITHIN THE REALM
[_Lansdowne MSS., 48, f. 128, No. 54_[298]], 1586.

That the sheriffs and justices of the peace by speedy warning of the
sheriff shall immediately upon receipt of these orders assemble
themselves together, and shall take amongst them into their charge by
several divisions all the hundreds, rapes, or wapentakes of the said
county.

_Item_, every company so allotted out shall forthwith direct their
precepts unto the said sheriff to warn the high constables,
under-constables, and others the most honest and substantial inhabitants
... to appear before them, ... and upon the appearance of the said
persons they shall divide them into so many juries as they shall think
meet, giving instruction to the said sheriff to return as few of such as
be known great farmers for corn or have store of grain to sell as he
can; ...

_Item_, they shall first declare the cause why they are sent for ... and
then they shall give them the oath following:--

The Juries' Oath.

You shall swear, etc., that you shall enquire and make true and due
search and trial what number of persons every householder that hath corn
in their barns, stacks or otherwhere, as well justices of the peace as
others whatsoever within the parish of ..., have in their houses; what
number of acres they have certainly to be sown this year with any manner
of grain; what bargains they have made with any persons for any kind of
grain to be sold by or to them; to whom and by whom and upon what price
they have made the same, and what quantity of any manner of grain they
or any other have in their barns, garners, lofts, cellars or floors or
otherwise to be delivered unto them upon any bargain.

_Item_, what number of badgers, ladders, broggers or carriers of corn do
inhabit within the said parish, and whither they do use to carry their
corn they buy, and where they do usually buy the same and what their
names be, and how long they have used that trade, and by whose license,
and to see the same licenses of what tenor they are of.

_Item_, what number of maltmakers, bakers, common brewers or tipplers
dwell within the said parish, and who they are by name, and how long
they have used that trade, and how much they bake or brew in the week,
and what other trade they have whereby otherwise to live.

_Item_, who within the same parish be the great buyers of corn, or do
buy, or have bought any corn or grain, to sell again, or have sold it
again since midsummer last.

_Item_, who within the same parish buyeth or have bought or sold any
corn upon the ground, of whom and to whom hath the same been bought or
sold and at what prices, and to certify unto us of the premises and of
every part thereof.

That the said justices of the peace, having received ... the verdicts of
the said juries, ... shall call ... such persons before them of every
parish as upon the presentment so made shall appear to have corn to
spare, and upon due consideration of the number of persons which each
hath in his house according to their qualities, and of the quantity of
grain the party hath toward the finding of the same or otherwise to be
spent in his house and sowing of his grounds, allowing to every
householder for his expenses in his house for every person thereof
according to their quality sufficient corn for bread and drink, between
this and the next harvest, and for their seed after the rate of the
sowing of that country upon an acre; and (_sic_) that they shall bind
all such as shall appear to have more of any kind of grain than shall
serve to uses above mentioned, as well justices of the peace as other,
by recognizance in some good reasonable sums of money to observe the
orders ensuing, viz., ...

You shall bring or cause to be brought weekly so many quarters or
bushels of corn as wheat, rye, barley, malt, peas, beans, or other
grain, or so much thereof as shall not be directly sold to the poor
artificers or day labourers of the parish within which you dwell by
order of the justice of the peace of the division within which you do
dwell or two of them, to the market of ..., there to be by you or at
your assignment sold unto the Queen's subjects in open market by half
quarters, two bushels, one bushel or less as the buyer shall require of
you, and not in greater quantity, except it be a badger or carrier of
corn admitted according to the statute, or to a common known brewer or
baker, ... and you shall not willingly leave any part of your corn
unsold if money be offered to you for the same by any that are permitted
to buy the same after the usual price of the market there that day,
neither shall you from the beginning of the market to the full end
thereof keep or cause to be kept any part of your said corn out of the
open sight of the market....

Ye shall buy no corn to sell it again.

Ye shall neither buy nor sell any manner of corn but in the open market,
unless the same be to poor handicraftsmen or day-labourers within the
parish where you do dwell that cannot conveniently come to the market
towns by reason of distance of place, according to such direction as
shall be given unto you in that behalf by the justices of the peace of
that division within which you do dwell, or two of them, and to none of
these above one bushel at a time.

That the justices of the peace within their several divisions have
special regard that engrossers of corn be carefully seen unto and
severely punished according to the law, and where such are found, to
make certificate thereof and of the proofs to the Queen Majesty's
attorney general for the time being, who is directed speedily to inform
against them for the same, and to see also that none be permitted to buy
any corn to sell again but by special license.

That they take order with the common bakers for the baking of rye,
barley, peas, and beans for the use of the poor, and that they appoint
special and fit persons diligently to see their people well dealt
withall by the common bakers and brewers in all towns and places in
their weight and assize, and effectually to enquire for and search out
the default therein, and thereupon to give order for punishment of the
offenders severely according to the law, and where any notable offence
shall be in the bakers, to cause the bread to be sold to the poorer sort
under the ordinary prices in part of punishment of the baker.

That no badgers of corn, bakers or brewers, do buy any grain, or covin
or bargain for the same, but in the time of open market, and that but by
license under the hand of the justices of the division where they do
dwell, or three of them, and that they weekly bring their license with
them to the market where they do either buy or sell, and that the
license contain how much grain of what kind and for what place they are
licensed to buy and carry, that there be set down upon the license the
day, place, quantity and price the corn is bought at, that they take but
measurably for the carriage, baking and brewing thereof, that they show
their book weekly to such as the justice of the division wherein they
dwell shall appoint, being no bakers or badgers of corn. And that those
persons every 14 days make report to the justice of the division wherein
they dwell how the people are dealt withall by the badgers, bakers and
brewers. And that such as have otherwise sufficient to live on, or that
are known to be of any crime or evil behaviour, be not permitted to be
badgers of corn, nor any badgers to be permitted but such as the statute
doth limit, and that none be permitted to buy or provide corn in the
market in gross as badger or baker and such like, upon pain of
imprisonment, until one hour after the full market be begun, that the
poor may be first served.

That the said justices, or two or one of them, at the least, in every
division, shall be personally present at every market within their
several divisions to see the orders to be taken by the authority hereof
to be well observed, and the poor people provided of necessary corn, and
that with as much favour in the prices as by earnest persuasion of the
justices may be obtained; ...

That all good means and persuasions be used by the justices in their
several divisions that the poor may be served of corn at convenient and
charitable prices.

That there be no buying or bargaining for any kind of corn but in open
market, and that the justices in their several divisions restrain common
maltsters of making barley-malt in those countries and places where
there be oats sufficient to make malt of for the use of the people, and
to restrain as well the brewing of barley-malt by or for ale houses or
common tipplers in those countries and places, as also the excess use of
any kind of malt by all common brewers in all alehouses and common
tippling houses wheresoever, and that sufficient bonds be taken of all
common brewers, maltsters and common tipplers, according to the true
meaning of this article, and that the unnecessary number of alehouses
and common tipplers be forthwith suppressed in all places, and that
direction be given to all tippling houses, taverns and alehouses not to
suffer any persons to repair thither to eat and drink at unseasonable
times.

That the justices use all other good means that are not mentioned in
these orders that the markets be well served and the poor relieved in
their provisions during this time of dearth, and that no expense of any
grain meet for bread to feed men be wasted upon feeding of beasts,
neither that any be spent in making of a stuff called starch, as of late
there hath been discovered great quantity expended in that vain matter
being in no sort to be suffered to continue.

That the justices be straightly commanded to see by all good means that
the able people be set on work, the houses of correction provided and
furnished, and there idle vagabonds to be punished.

That the justices do their best to have convenient stock to be provided
in every division or other place, according to the statute for setting
the poor awork, and the justices to use all other good and politic means
within their several divisions to continue and maintain the poor people
in work within the parish, or at the furthest, within the hundred or
division.

That the maimed or hurt soldiers and all other impotent persons be
carefully seen unto to be relieved within their several parishes,
hundreds or divisions, according to the law therefor provided, and that
where the provisions formerly made be not sufficient it may be now for
this time of dearth increased; and where one parish is not able to give
sufficient relief to such their poor, that parish to have the supply of
such parishes near adjoining as have fewer poor and are better able to
give relief, and that no vagabond or sturdy beggar, or any that may
otherwise get their living by their labours, be not suffered to wander
abroad under colour of begging in any town or highway, and that the
justices do presently give order that there be persons sufficiently
weaponed to assist the constables of every town to attach such vagabonds
both in their town-side and highways, and to commit them to prison
without bail, but as two of the justices of the peace near that division
shall order, and if the township shall not observe this order for the
attaching and punishment of the said vagabonds, then the justices shall
see due punishment by fine upon the whole township, or upon such parties
in the town as shall be found in fault.

That the justices of the peace do once every month certify their doings
and proceedings by force of these instructions unto the sheriff of the
said county, in which certificate they shall also make certificate of
such justices as shall be absent from any of these services, and the
true cause of their absence, and shall also certify the usual prices of
all kinds of grain in their markets for that month past, of all which
the same sheriff to certify the Privy Council once in every forty days
at the farthest, so as that default in any justice that shall be absent
may be duly considered and corrected by authority of his Majesty's
council as reason shall require, and so as such persons as are placed as
justices for their credit may not continue in those rooms, wherein they
shall be found not disposed to attend such a necessary and godly service
as this is, but others of better disposition may supply those rooms, if
there shall be need of any such number, as in most places is thought not
very needful, the number being in common opinion more hurtful than
profitable to justice.

And if any shall offend against the true meaning of these instructions,
or any part thereof, or shall use any sinister means to the defrauding
thereof, that such be severely punished according to the laws, and for
such obstinate persons as shall not conform themselves the justices
shall at their pleasure bind to appear before the Queen Majesty's Privy
Council by a day certain, there to be further dealt with by severe
punishment for the better ensample of all others....

[Footnote 298: Quoted Leonard, _Early History of English Poor Relief_,
pp. 318-26.]


8. THE POOR LAW ACT OF 1601 [_43 and 44 Eliz. c. 2. Statutes of the
Realm, Vol. IV, Part II, pp. 962-5_], 1601.

Be it enacted by the authority of this present parliament, that the
churchwardens of every parish, and four, three or two substantial
householders there as shall be thought meet, having respect to the
apportion and greatness of the same parish or parishes, to be nominated
yearly in Easter week or within one month after Easter, under the hand
and seal of two or more justices of the peace in the same county,
whereof one to be of the _quorum_, dwelling in or near the same parish
or division where the same parish doth lie, shall be called overseers of
the poor of the same parish: and they or the greater part of them shall
take order from time to time, by and with the consent of two or more
such justices of peace as is aforesaid, for setting to work of the
children of all such whose parents shall not by the said churchwardens
and overseers or the greater part of them be thought able to keep and
maintain their children; and also for setting to work all such persons
married or unmarried having no means to maintain them, [or] use no
ordinary and daily trade of life to get their living by; and also to
raise weekly or otherwise, by taxation of every inhabitant parson, vicar
and other, and of every occupier of lands, houses, tithes impropriate or
propriations of tythes, coal mines or saleable underwoods, in the said
parish, in such competent sum and sums of money as they shall think fit,
a convenient stock of flax, hemp, wool, thread, iron and other necessary
ware and stuff to set the poor on work, and also competent sums of money
for and towards the necessary relief of the lame, impotent, old, blind
and such other among them being poor and not able to work, and also for
the putting out of such children to be apprentices, to be gathered out
of the same parish according to the ability of the same parish; and to
do and execute all other things as well for the disposing of the said
stock as otherwise concerning the premises as to them shall seem
convenient: which said churchwardens and overseers so to be nominated,
or such of them as shall not be let by sickness or other just excuse to
be allowed by two such justices of peace or more as aforesaid, shall
meet together at the least once every month in the church of the said
parish, upon the Sunday in the afternoon after Divine Service, there to
consider of some good course to be taken and of some meet order to be
set down in the premises, and shall within four days after the end of
their year and after other overseers nominated as aforesaid, make and
yield up to such two justices of peace as is aforesaid a true and
perfect account of all sums of money by them received, or rated and
assessed and not received, and also of such stock as shall be in their
hands or in the hands of any of the poor to work, and of all other
things concerning their said office; and such sum or sums of money as
shall be in their hands shall pay and deliver over to the said
churchwardens and overseers newly nominated and appointed as aforesaid;
...

And be it further enacted that it shall be lawful for the said
churchwardens and overseers, or the greater part of them, by the assent
of any two justices of the peace aforesaid, to bind any such children as
aforesaid to be apprentices, where they shall see convenient, till such
man-child shall come to the age of four and twenty years, and such
woman-child to the age of one and twenty years, or the time of her
marriage; the same to be as effectual to all purposes as if such child
were of full age, and by indenture of covenant bound him or herself.

And the said justices of peace or any of them to send to the house of
correction or common gaol such as shall not employ themselves to work,
being appointed thereunto as aforesaid.


9. A NOTE OF THE GRIEVANCES OF THE PARISH OF ELDERSFIELD [_Hist. MSS.
Com. Vol. I, pp. 298-299_], 1618.

There are divers poor people in the said parish which are a great
charge. Giles Cooke, not of our parish, married a widow's daughter
within our parish, which widow is poor and lives in a small cottage,
which is like to be a charge. Joan Whiple had lived 40 years and upward
in the parish with a brother, as a servant to him; and now that she has
grown old and weak he has put her off to the parish; she was taken
begging within the parish and was sent to Teddington, where she said she
was born, but that parish has sent her back again. Elzander Man, born in
Forthampton, in the county of Gloucester, married a wife within the
parish, who was received by her mother till she had two children; the
said wife is now dead, and he is gone into Gloucestershire and has left
his children to the keeping of the parish. Thomas Jones, born at
Harfield, in the county of Gloucester, married a wife within the parish,
and has two children; the said Jones being now gone, the parishioners
would know if they might send the woman to her husband, or to the place
where she or her husband was born.... Francis Gatfield has gone from the
parish, leaving his child and some goods and money; the child is left in
charge of the parish and the goods with his brother and sister; the
parishioners desire to know whether they may not avoid keeping the child
or seize the said goods towards its maintenance.


10. PETITION TO JUSTICES OF WILTSHIRE FOR PERMISSION TO SETTLE IN A
PARISH [_Hist. MSS. Com., Vol. I, p. 298_], 1618.

Petitioner doth give you to understand that he was born in Stockton
within this county, and has been bred up in the same parish, and most of
my time in service; and have taken great pains for my living all my time
since I was able, and of late I fortuned to marry with an honest young
woman, and my parishioners not willing that I should bring her in the
parish, saying we would breed a charge among them. Then I took a house
in Bewdley, and there my wife doth yet dwell and in confines
thereabouts, and I send or bring my wife the best relief I am able, and
now the parish of Bewdley will not suffer her to dwell there for doubt
of further charge. Right worshipful, I most humbly crave your good aid
and help in this my distress, or else my poor wife and child are like to
perish without the doors. And this, right worshipful, I do humbly crave,
that by your good help and order to the parish of Stockton I may have a
house there to bring my wife and child unto, that I may help them the
best I can.


11. LETTER FROM PRIVY COUNCIL TO JUSTICES OF CLOTH-MAKING COUNTIES[299]
[_Privy Council Register, Feb. 9th, 1621-2_], 1621-2.

We do hereby require you to call before you such clothiers as you shall
think fitting, and to deal effectually with them for the employment of
such weavers, spinners and other persons as are now out of work, where
we may not omit to let you know, that as we have employed our best
endeavours in favour of the clothiers both for the vent of their cloth
and for moderation in the price of wool (of which we hope they shall
speedily find the effects), so may we not endure that the clothiers in
that or any other county should at their pleasure, and without giving
knowledge thereof unto this Board, dismiss their workfolks, who, being
many in number and most of them of the poorer sort, are in such cases
likely by their clamours to disturb the quiet and government of those
parts wherein they live. And if there shall be found greater numbers of
poor people than the clothiers can receive and employ, we think it fit
and accordingly require you to take order for putting the statute in
execution, whereby there is provision made in that behalf by raising of
public stocks for the employment of such in that trade as want work.
Wherein if any clothier shall after sufficient warning refuse or neglect
to appear before you, or otherwise shall obstinately deny to yield to
such overtures in this case as shall be reasonable and just, you shall
take good bonds of them for refusing to appear before us, and
immediately certify their names unto this Board ...; this being the rule
by which both the woolgrower, the clothier and merchant must be
governed, that whosoever had a part of the gain in profitable times
since his Majesty's happy reign, must now in the decay of trade ... bear
a part of the public losses as may best conduce to the good of the
public and the maintenance of the general trade.

[Footnote 299: Quoted Leonard, _Early History of English Poor Relief_,
pp. 147-8.]


12. LETTER FROM PRIVY COUNCIL TO THE DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS AND JUSTICES OF
THE PEACE IN THE COUNTIES OF SUFFOLK AND ESSEX CONCERNING THE EMPLOYMENT
OF THE POOR[300] [_Privy Council Register, Chas. I, Vol. V, f. 263_],
1629.

Whereas we by special directions of his Majesty did lately commend unto
your care the present state of those parts of your county where the poor
clothiers and their workmen at present destitute of work might some
other way be employed or for the time be relieved till some
obstructions to trade were removed, as also to keep in order those that
are loose and ill disposed people; to which end his Majesty, by advice
of his Privy Council and the Judges, hath lately published a
proclamation declaring his pleasure and command in what manner the truly
poor and impotent should be relieved, those of able bodies should be set
on work and employed in honest labour, and the sturdy, idle and
dangerous rogues and vagabonds should be repressed and punished, which
proclamation you shall herewith likewise receive; now, because we
understand that in your county there is more than ordinary occasion to
use all diligence and industry at this time, we have thought fit to put
you more particularly in mind thereof, and in answer of your letters to
let you know that it is the resolution of all the judges, that by the
law you have sufficient power and ought to raise means out of the
several parishes, if they be of ability, or otherwise in their defect,
in their several hundreds, lathes or wapentakes, and for want of their
ability (to set your poor on work and to relieve the aged and impotent
not able to work) in the whole body of the county; wherefore his Majesty
commands that the ways provided by law in these cases be duly followed
with all diligence and possible speed. You are required to understand
the true state of the country from the ministers, churchwardens and
overseers of the several parishes within your several divisions. And
what rests herein to be done by order at the quarter sessions, the
judges advise that for this purpose you may call the quarter sessions
sooner then the ordinary set times, and do that which in this case is so
requisite.

Further we let you to know, that such hath been his Majesty's care and
personal pains taken to remove these impediments that of late have been
to trade, and to open a free vent to the commodities of your country,
that yourselves will shortly see the fruits of it to your comforts;
nevertheless in the meantime these things provided by the law, and the
helps that by your care may be added, are in no sort to be neglected,
but exactly pursued; of which your proceedings we, are to be advertised
that so we may render account thereof to his Majesty.

And so, etc.

[Footnote 300: Quoted Leonard, _Early History of English Poor Relief,
pp. 336-7_.]


13. THE LICENSING OF BADGERS IN SOMERSETSHIRE [_Somerset Quarter
Sessions Records, Vol. 24, p. 120_], 1630.

This Court taking notice of the great prices of corn and butter and
cheese and all other commodities, it was ordered that from henceforth no
badger whatsoever be licensed but in open sessions, and shall first
enter into recognizance and be entered by the clerk of the peace into
his book of records, and also that all maltsters do the like before any
justice do sign and seal his licence.


14. BADGERS LICENSED AT SOMERSETSHIRE QUARTER SESSIONS [_Somerset
Quarter Sessions Records, Vol. 24, p. 119_], 1630.

To Edith Doddington of Hilbishopps, widow, to be a badger of butter and
cheese and to carry the same into the counties of Wilts, Hampshire,
Dorset and Devon, and to return again laden with corn, and to sell it
again in any fair or market within this county during one whole year now
next ensuing; and she is not to travel with above three horses, mares,
or geldings at the most part; for performance whereof Mr. Symes is to
take her recognizance, granted by John Homer, John Symes, John
Harington.

To Thomas Rawlings of Lympsham to buy corn in the counties of Wilts and
Somerset to sell the same again in the city of Bristol, Mr. Harington to
take the recognizance. Ro. Phelipps, Pa. Godwyn.

To Anthony Banbury of Pitney to buy barley and oats, and the same to
convert into malt, and to sell again in any fair, and to travel not with
above two horses, geldings or mares at the most. Ro. Phelipps, He.
Berkley, Pa. Godwyn, John Harington.


15. THE SUPPLYING OF BRISTOL WITH GRAIN [_Somerset Quarter Sessions
Records, Vol. 24, pp. 145-6, No. 33_], 1630-1.

Whereas it is entreated on the behalf of the city of Bristol that their
purveyors, drivers, and higglers may buy and carry away for the
necessary provision of the said city such quantities of corn as may be
conveniently spared within the markets of this county, and that they may
freely carry through the said county such corn and grain as they shall
buy in the counties adjacent: It is therefore thought fit and ordered,
that these purveyors, drivers and higglers may buy, drive, and carry in
and through the said county such proportions thereof as shall by us the
justices of peace in our several divisions be thought convenient to be
bought, driven, and carried and no more, so as the said purveyors,
drivers and higglers be lawfully licensed so to do; and this our order
to stand in force for the space of forty days, that in the mean time a
joint conference may be had according to his Majesty's directions in
that behalf with some of the magistrates of the said city and of the
justices of such adjacent counties as the premises shall concern, and
this Bench doth depute Sir Henry Berkeley, Sir John Horner, Kts., Robte
Hopton, Esqr., and Sir Ralph Hopton, Knight, or any three or two of them
to meet, treat and conclude with them in the said conference.


16. PROCEEDING AGAINST ENGROSSERS AND OTHER OFFENDERS [_Somerset Quarter
Sessions Records, Vol. 24, p. 152, No. 19_], 1631.

General Sessions of the Peace held at Ivelchester the 19th, 20th, 21st
and 22nd days of April, 7 Charles (1631).

Richard Granger maketh oath against William Hurde of Walton, yeoman,
James Hurde of the same, Richard Pinckard of the same, yeoman, for
buying corn in ground; against Jacob Hill of Halse, using a trade of
clothing not being apprentice, William Rowswell of Wellington for
regrating of cheese, Jacob Androwse of Bridgwater and Thomas Prinne of
Somerton, partners, for buying corn in ground, John Durston of Wilton
for buying and selling within five weeks, George Thome of Stogursey and
John Brewer of Combwitch for the same offence, Edmund Galle of
Bridgwater for taking extortion, Richard. Barker of Godnye in the parish
of Meare for maintaining a cottage that hath not four acres of land.


17. ORDER OF SOMERSETSHIRE JUSTICES GRANTING A SETTLEMENT TO A LABOURER
[_Somerset Quarter Sessions Records, Vol. 24, p. 139, No. 4_], 1630-1.

General Sessions of the Peace held at Wells the 11th, 12th, 13th and
14th days of January, 6 Charles.

Lyonell Wills having petitioned this Court, showing that whereas he
hath remained in the parish of Tintenhull for the space of five years
now last past, three years whereof he served as a labouring servant, and
the two last years as a married man, although not with the consent of
some of the parish, and during the said two latter years after he became
a married man he endeavoured to take a house within the said parish for
his money without any charge to the said parish; and some of the said
parish hath forbidden him to remain there any longer and threateneth
him, and those that would set or let him any house, to impose great
pains on them that shall receive him or let him any house, whereby he is
inforced to travel from place to place with his wife and children, and
thereby doubteth that he shall in the end be taken as a vagrant; which,
the Court taking into consideration, have thought fit to order that the
said Lionell Wills be settled at Tintenhull, as they conceiveth by law
he ought to be, if his petition be true. And that the said parishioners
upon sight of this order do there receive him, and suffer him to be and
abide, until they shall show good cause to the contrary to this Court.
And that they do suffer him to take a house for his money within the
said parish, which if they shall refuse to do, or impose any fines or
pains upon those that shall set or let any house unto him or shall be
willing thereunto, that then upon complaint thereof made unto Sir Robte
Phelipps, Knight, or Thomas Lyte, Esqr., or either of them, they finding
his petition to be true will be pleased to bind all such parties to the
next Sessions as shall refuse thus to receive him or to trouble any that
shall let set them a house to dwell in.


18. REPORT OF DERBYSHIRE JUSTICES ON THEIR PROCEEDINGS [_S.P.D., Charles
I, Vol. 202, No. 54_], 1631.

  Wirksworth Wapentake.

  To Francis Bradshawe, Esq., High Sheriff of the County of
  Derby.

  Sir,

In pursuit of the orders and directions given us in command as well by
the printed book as also by several letters sent unto us from the right
honourable the lords of her Majesty's most honourable Privy Council, we,
whose names are hereunder written, having within our allotment the
wapentake or hundred of Wirksworth, have had monthly meetings within
the said hundred and have summoned both the high constable, petty
constables, churchwardens, and overseers of the poor within that
division and hundred to appear before us.

1. And first we have made diligent inquiry how all the said officers and
others have done their duties in execution of the laws mentioned in the
Commission, and what persons have offended against any of them, and
punished such as we have found faulty.

2. We have taken care that the lords and parishioners of every town
relieve the poor thereof, and they are not suffered to straggle or beg
up and down either in their parishes or elsewhere. But such poor as have
transgressed have been punished according to law, and the impotent poor
there are carefully relieved. We have also taken especial care that both
the stewards of leets and ourselves in particular have taken care for
the reformation of abuses in bakers, alehousekeepers, breaking of
assize, forestallers and regrators, against tradesmen of all sorts for
selling with underweight, and have made search in market towns and other
places and taken away and burned very many false weights and measures,
and taken order for the punishing of the said offenders.

3. We have made special inquiry of such poor children as are fit to be
bound apprentices to husbandry and otherwise, and of such as are fit to
take apprentices, and therein we have taken such course as by law is
required. And we find none refuse to take apprentices, being thereunto
required.

4. We do not find upon our inquiry that the statute for labourers and
ordering of wages is deluded, and the common fashion of none essoyning
of course is restrained.

5. The weekly taxations for relief of the poor in these times of
scarcity is raised to higher rates, and we have further observed the
course appointed in the fifth article.

6. We have taken order the petty constables within our said division are
chosen of the ablest parishioners.

7. Watches in the night and warding by day are appointed in every town
for apprehension of rogues and for good order, and we have taken order
to punish such as we have found faulty.

8. We have taken care that the high constable doth his duty in
presenting to us the defaults of the petty constables for not punishing
the rogues and in presenting to us the defaulters.

9. We find none presented to us that live out of service and refuse to
work for reasonable wages.

10. We have one House of Correction at Ashborn within our wapentake,
which is near the town prison, where such as are committed are kept to
work.

11. We have punished several persons for harbouring rogues in their
barns and outhouses, and have observed the further directions of the
11th article.

12. We have had care to see that all defects and defaults in the
amending of highways be redressed, and the defaulters have been
presented to the next quarter sessions and punished.

And as touching their lordships' letters and orders directed concerning
corn and enclosures, we do at our monthly meetings take a strict account
that the former orders therein taken by us in pursuit thereof be duly
observed and put in execution, and particularly none sell such corn (as
they are appointed to sell out of the market) but to the poor of the
said parish. And neither the petty constable nor any other officer can
(as they inform us) present any engrossers of corn, etc., or
forestallers of markets.

The prices of corn (considering the times) are not on our markets in our
opinion unreasonable, but are as follow, viz., wheat for the strike 5s.,
four peck making a strike, rye 4s., barley 3s. 4d., malt 5s., peas 4s.,
oats 2s. 6d.

We have made especial inquiry touching enclosures made within these two
years, but find very few within our division, for the most of our
wapentake hath been long since enclosed. Howsoever some few hath been
presented, which we have commanded to throw down, and have stayed the
proceedings of such enclosures as have been lately begun and are not
finished.

We have no maltmakers in this wapentake but for their own use.

We have put down a full third part of all the alehouses within this
wapentake; yet there are so great a multitude of poor miners within this
wapentake that we are enforced to leave more alehousekeepers than
otherwise we would.

We have taken order for the binding all cooks, alehousekeepers,
victuallers and butchers within this hundred that they neither dress nor
suffer to be dressed or eaten any flesh during the time of Lent or
other days prohibited, and our recognizances to that purpose do remain
with the Clerk of the Peace, to be by him certified according to the
statute.

  John Fitzherbert.
  Chr. Fulwood.


19. LETTER FROM PRIVY COUNCIL TO JUSTICES OF RUTLANDSHIRE[301] [_Privy
Council Register, Vol. VI, f. 345_], 1631.

Whereas we have been made acquainted with a letter written by John
Wildbore, a Minister in and about Tinwell within that county, to a
friend of his here, wherein after some mention by him made of the
present want and misery sustained by the poorer sort in those parts
through the dearth of corn and the want of work, he doth advertize in
particular some speeches uttered by a shoemaker of Uppingham (whose name
we find not) tending to the stirring up of the poor thereabout to a
mutiny and insurrection; which information was as followeth, _in hæc
verba_: "Hearest thou?" saith a shoemaker of Uppingham to a poor man of
Liddington, "If thou wilt be secret I will make a motion to thee." "What
is your motion?" saith the other. Then said the shoemaker, "The poor men
of Okeham have sent to us poor men of Uppingham, and if you poor men of
Liddington will join with us, we will rise, and the poor of Okeham say
they can have all the armour of the country in their power within half
an hour, and in faith (saith he) we will rifle the churls." Upon
consideration had thereof, however this Board is not easily credulous of
light reports nor apt to take impression from the vain speeches or
ejaculations of some mean and contemptible persons; yet because it sorts
well with the care and providence of a state to prevent all occasions
which ill-affected persons may otherwise lay hold of under pretence and
colour of the necessity of the time, we have thought good hereby to will
and require you, the Deputy Lieuts. and Justices of peace next
adjoining, forthwith to apprehend and take a more particular examination
as well of the said shoemaker as of such others as you shall think fit
concerning the advertizement aforesaid; and that you take especial care
that the arms of that county in and about those parts be safely disposed
of; and likewise (which is indeed most considerable and the best means
to prevent all disorders in this kind) that you deal effectually in
causing the market to be well supplied with corn and the poor to be
served at reasonable prices and set on work by those of the richer sort,
and by raising of stock to relieve and set them on work according to the
laws. All which we recommend to your especial care, and require an
account from you of your doings and proceedings herein with all
convenient expedition.

And so, etc.

[Footnote 301: Quoted Leonard, _Early History of English Poor Relief_,
pp. 338-9.]


20. JUDGMENT IN THE STAR CHAMBER AGAINST AN ENGROSSER OF CORN [_Camden
Society. Cases in the Courts of Star Chamber and High Commission, edited
by S.R. Gardiner_], 1631.

_In Camera Stellata, Michaelmas, 7o Caroli._

One Archer of Southchurch in Essex was brought _ore tenus_, being then
charged by Mr. Attorney-General for keeping in his corn, and
consequently for enhancing the price of corn the last year, which
offence Mr. Attorney affirmed to be of high nature and evil consequence,
to the undoing of the poor and _malum in se_, and then desired his
examination taken before the Lord Keeper might be read. His examination
purported that he had seen at the time of his examining a presentment
that was made against him by the Grand Jury at the last Assizes in Essex
before Justice Vernon for the said offence of keeping in his corn and
enhancing; and for that he had made a bargain to sell the poor of the
town where he dwelled rye for 7s. a bushell, and afterwards refused to
perform his bargain unless he might have nine shillings a bushell: he
denied his bargain, but for his excuse said, he sold to the towns about
him for the poor, wheat at 7s. and 8s. a bushell, and at the latter end
of the year for 5s., and rye for 7s., and 6s., etc., and some for 3s. and
6d. the bushell. He confessed he kept in his corn till June, and that he
had 8 quarters of wheat, 60 quarters of rye, and 100 quarters of oats,
and that his family were himself and his wife and daughters, two maids,
and a man; he confessed that he sold none or very little of his corn in
Rochford hundred where he dwelt, though he were commanded so to do by
the Earl of Warwick; yet for his defence he further alleged that his
barn was not visited by any justices or officers according to his
Majesty's late proclamation and orders for that purpose, and that he had
no notice of the said proclamation and orders; lastly, he confessed he
sold most of his corn at London and Chelmsford, and that he bought his
seed corn out of market, etc. His examination aforesaid was shewed to
him and he confessed it to be true, and acknowledged his hand thereunto
subscribed before it was read in court; and it being read, the Lord
Keeper demanded of Archer what he could there say for himself, and what
answer he would make to this accusation. The said Archer saith that he
could make no other answer than he had made in his examination, and
submitted himself to the mercy of the Court.

Mr. Attorney desired that their Lordships would proceed to sentence the
said Archer according to his desert, and withall prayed that a precedent
of a sentence given in the Star Chamber in the 29 and 30 of Queen
Elizabeth against one Framingham of Norfolk in the like case might be
read before their Lordships gave their sentence in this cause; and it
was read. The said Framingham was accused upon his own confession in
this Court _ore tenus_ for destroying of husbandry in making cottages of
his tenants' houses, taking away the land and letting it lie to pasture
in his own hands, and letting the cottages at dear rates, and
forstalling the markets, and enhancing the prices of corn, whereupon he
was fined 500l. to the Queen, and ordered to pay 40l. to the poor, and
to stand upon a stool in Cheapside with a paper on his head declaring
his offence, and to lay his land again to the cottages, and to let them
at reasonable rates.

Justice Harvey delivered his opinion, that whereas it hath pleased God
to send a plentiful year, and yet the price of corn continued very high,
himself and the rest of the Justices of the Peace that were in the last
Quarter Sessions in Hertfordshire assembled, did advise among themselves
how they might deal with the country to bring down the price, but they
were afraid to meddle with any thing upon experience of their ill-taking
what was so well intended by his Majesty, that by the late orders,
thereupon taking occasion to go on and raise the prices of corn higher;
he was of opinion that this man's punishment or example will do a great
deal more good than all their orders which they might have made at the
Sessions; and therefore he declared his offence to be very great, and
fit to be punished in this Court; and adjudged him to pay 100 marks fine
to the King, and 10l. to the poor, and to stand upon the pillory in
Newgate Market an hour with a paper, wherein the cause of his standing
there was to be written, put upon his hat, "For enhancing the price of
corn"; and then to be led through Cheapside to Leadenhall Market, and
there likewise to stand upon the pillory one hour more with the same
paper upon his hat, and after this to be sent to Chelmsford, and there
likewise in the market to stand upon the pillory.

Sir Thomas Richardson affirmed this offence to be an offence at the
common law long before the King's proclamation and orders, and also
against some statutes, that his keeping in his corn and not bringing it
into the next markets by little and little as he ought to have done, and
selling it at other markets when the price was as high as he would have
it, was an enhancing the price of corn, and that the Justices in Essex
did at the common law inquire of such enhancing the price of any
victuals, and corn was certainly victual, bread the staff of man's life,
and that keeping in of his corn in this manner was enhancing the prices
of corn, which is punishable by the statute as well as forestallings,
and approved of his Majesty's pious and honourable care for his people.
Also he observed in the defendant's confession that he was guilty of
forestalling the market, in buying seed corn out of market and not
bringing so much of his own to supply the same in the next market. He
therefore condemned the said Archer to be guilty of the said offences,
and agreed in his said fine to the King, and would have him pay as much
to the poor as the 100 marks wanted of 100l.

The Bishop of London[302] observed with Mr. Attorney that this was
_malum in se_, and that this Archer was guilty of a most foul offence,
which the Prophet hath in a very energetical phrase, "grinding the faces
of the poor." He commended highly that speech of Justice Harvey, that
this last year's famine was made by man and not by God, solicited by the
hard-heartedness of men, and commended this observation as being made by
his Majesty. And thereupon undertook to clear the wisdom of the Church,
in ordaining to pray to God that he would be pleased to turn his
scarcity and dearth, which cruel men (but He never) made, through His
goodness and mercy into cheapness and plenty. He said that God taketh
away the hardness and cruelty of men's hearts, which was the cause of
the famine or scarcity, and He only; and therefore the Church hath very
wisely ordained as aforesaid. He is glad to hear it declared to be an
offence against the common law of this realm; and, therefore, seeing it
had pleased God to load the earth so richly, and also to send so dry a
time for the inning the same in the harvest, for, if that had wanted,
all that abundance had been but an uncomfortable load, as we by our sins
had deserved and was threatened, and yet for all this plenty corn was at
an extreme rate, and they boast among themselves now they can keep their
corn as long as they list and no fear of moulding, he thinks fit this
man be made an example that others may fear to offend in the like kind.
And assenteth to his fine to be 100 marks, and thinks fit, seeing he
hath ground the faces of the poor, he should therefore help to seal them
again, and pay 10l. to the poor; and the rest of the former sentence he
assented unto. The Earl of Danby consented to the sentence in all,
adding that he should pay but 10l. to the poor, and to stand likewise
upon the pillory at the Palace, because some of all countries might take
notice thereof.

The Earl of Dorset concurred in his sentence with the Earl of Danby, and
commended my Lord Keeper and Mr. Attorney for their care and pains in
bringing him to justice, and wished that inquiry should be made if the
Justices of the Peace had made default in not visiting the said Archer's
barns. But as for the Earl of Warwick, Sir Thomas Richardson had well
declared that Lords and Peers of the Parliament were exempted from the
services of the said orders, and yet that the Lord of Warwick out of his
care had admonished him, etc.

Lord Privy Seal gave his sentence in few words, that Archer was guilty
by his own confession of a very great offence, and well worthy the
sentence aforesaid, and in full consented to it.

The Lord Keeper did affirm that it was indeed a good work to bring this
man forth to be here sentenced, but that it was brought about by means
of Justice Vernon, who informed him of the said Archer as being the only
man presented in all his circuit for offending in this kind, and that to
him this was to be attributed. He was of opinion, that the said Archer
was guilty of enhancing the price of corn by keeping in his corn, as is
confessed, in this time of scarcity, which was not a scarcity made by
God (for there was enough to be had at dear prices and high rates). He
affirmed the same to be an offence as well against the common law as
against some statutes, and also he would not leave out against his
Majesty's proclamation and orders, for his Lordship held there was an
aggravation to his offence. And his Lordship declared further (and
wished it might be taken notice of, as well as of what had already been
spoken, for that much had been said that day of singular use and benefit
for the commonwealth), that these were no new opinions. And to that
purpose showed that in the old charge to the quest of inquiry in the
King's Bench, this enhancing the prices, not only of corn but of any
other commodities, was inquirable and to be there punished; also [he]
cited a statute whereby those that agree to keep up the price of any
commodities, agreeing to sell all at one price, and those that raise
false news to bring down the price of any commodities from what they are
justly worth, are punishable; as those that raised news that there were
great wars beyond sea, and there would be no vent for cloth, and told
the same in the country at Coxsall, for that the prices of wools fell
there, and they were punished for it. And his Lordship vouched a
precedent of one for procuring the raising the price of a certain
commodity, for which he was informed against in the King's Bench, and
though his Counsel alleged that he had done nothing, he had but spoken,
and his offence was in words only, yet he was adjudged an enhancer for
but advising the same. And [he] vouched a statute or proclamation in the
time of H. 8 for setting the prices on corn, and the like orders and
proclamations in the times of E. 6, Queen Eliz. and King James, and
agreed it to be well spoken by the Earl of Dorset, that if any shall do
any thing tending to depopulation, over and besides his punishment, he
shall be enjoined to populate as much, as the said Framingham was: and
vouched a book case, where one complaining against another for letting
down a sea wall, so that not only his, but diverse other men's grounds
were surrounded, the judgment was given in the common pleas that the
plaintiff should recover his damages, and the defendant should also make
up the said wall at his costs and charges. And thereupon his said
Lordship consented to the highest censure against the said Archer for
his forestalling the market and keeping in his corn to the enhancing of
the price, to the great hurt of the common people, especially the poor
labourer: and committed Archer to the Fleet from whence he came.

[Footnote 302: _i.e._ Laud.]



SECTION V

THE ENCOURAGEMENT OF INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE

   1. Letters Patent granted to the Cabots by Henry VII, 1496--2. The
   Merchant Adventurers' Case for Allowing the Export of Undressed
   Cloth, 1514-36--3. The Rise in Prices, the Encouragement of Corn
   growing, and the Protection of Manufactures, c. 1549--4. Sir Thomas
   Gresham on the Fall of the Exchanges, 1558--5. The Reasons why
   Bullion is Exported [_temp. Eliz._]--6. The Italian Merchants Explain
   the Foreign Exchanges, 1576--7. An Act Avoiding divers Foreign Wares
   made by Handicraftsmen Beyond the Seas, 1562--8. An Act Touching
   Cloth Workers and Cloth Ready Wrought to be Shipped over the Sea,
   1566--9. Incorporation of a Joint Stock Mining Company, 1568.--10. An
   Act for the Increase of Tillage, 1571--11. Instructions for an
   English Factor in Turkey, 1582--12. The Advantages of Colonies,
   1583--13. Lord Burghley to Sir Christopher Hatton on the State of
   Trade, 1587--14. A List of Patents and Monopolies, 1603--15.
   Instructions Touching the Bill for Free Trade, 1604--16. The
   Establishment of a Company to Export Dyed and Dressed Cloth in Place
   of the Merchant Adventurers, 1616--17. Sir Julius Cæsar's proposals
   for Reviving the Trade in Cloths, 1616--18. The Grant of a Monopoly
   for the Manufacture of Soap, 1623--19. The Statute of Monopolies,
   1623-4--20. An Act for the Free Trade of Welsh Cloths, 1623-4--21.
   The Economic Policy of Strafford in Ireland, 1636--22. Revocation of
   Commissions, Patents, and Monopolies Granted by the Crown, 1639--23.
   Ordinance Establishing an Excise, 1643.


The attempts made between 1405 and 1660 to develop industry and commerce
are usually known as "the Mercantile System." But the name is an
unfortunate one. The mercantile system was not specially mercantile;
for, as preceding sections have shown, government interference was not
confined to matters of commerce; nor was it a system, but a collection
of opportunist expedients, nearly all of which had been tried in
preceding centuries. It is true, however, that after the accession of
Elizabeth, the efforts already made under Henry VII and Henry VIII to
foster commerce (_see_ Schanz, _Englische Handelspolitik gegen Ende des
Mittelalters_) were carried on with greater persistency and
deliberation. It is from this period, therefore, that the documents in
this section are principally drawn.

The most pressing economic problem in the middle of the sixteenth
century was the fall in the value of money, caused, principally, by the
influx of silver from America, but to a less extent by the debasement of
the currency, which led to a rise in prices (No. 3), and a disturbance
of the foreign exchanges (Nos. 4 and 5), and which could be met to some
small extent by calling in the base coin (Nos. 4 and 5). This the
government did in 1560. In 1570, in its anxiety to prevent the efflux of
bullion, it took steps to impose a special tax on all exchange
transactions, but such a tax was really a tax on banking, and its
consequences, according to the business houses concerned, were
disastrous (No. 6). The most certain way, however, of securing adequate
supplies of bullion was thought to consist in checking imports and
encouraging exports (Nos. 3 and 5); and the policy was strengthened by
other considerations (No. 3). The general policy under Elizabeth was to
discourage imports in order to prevent unemployment at home (Nos. 3 and
7), to encourage corn-growing by allowing the export of wheat, except in
times of scarcity, on payment of a small duty (Nos. 3 and 10), and to
encourage the export of manufactured articles rather than of raw
materials, especially the export of dyed and finished cloth (Nos. 3, 8,
11 and 12), any interruption of which caused distress (No. 13). The
policy which had been pursued under Henry VIII threatened the vested
interests of the Merchants Adventurers, who complained that they could
not find markets for finished cloth (No. 2). In the reign of James I a
more ambitious attempt was made in the same direction, and in 1614, when
the abrupt dissolution of Parliament had left the government in
financial difficulties, a plan was initiated for preventing the
exportation of cloths not dyed and dressed in England. As the Merchant
Adventurers refused to be a party to it, a new company was established
to carry on the desired trade, and was granted a charter in 1616 (No.
16). The result of this policy was a tariff war with the Netherlands and
acute distress at home, and, after various suggestions for reviving
trade had been made (No. 17), the abandonment of the undertaking. The
political motives of mercantilism, as well as its economic aims, are
illustrated by Strafford's account of his policy in Ireland (No. 21). Of
more enduring importance, perhaps, than mercantilist schemes were the
development of Joint-Stock Companies (No. 9), the expansion of
commercial enterprize (No. 11), and the attempts to establish colonies
(No. 12).

Among the methods for fostering industry, and incidentally for raising
an unparliamentary revenue, the granting of patents and monopolies holds
an important place. These patents ranged from grants of the sole conduct
of important industries (Nos. 14 and 18) to grants of trifling offices
of profit and pensions (Nos. 14 and 22). The reaction against the
interference of the Crown with trade is excellently expressed in the
report of the Committee on "the Bill for Free Trade" (No. 15), a
document which, in spite of the fact that the Bill was dropped, is of
the highest economic and constitutional importance (_see_ Gardiner, Vol.
I, pp. 188-190). It is concerned primarily with monopolies enjoyed by
trading companies, such as the Company of Merchant Adventurers, the
Eastland Company, and the Russia Company. But its arguments apply _a
fortiori_ to patents granted to individuals, and throw much light on the
nature of the economic opposition to the Stuarts. The effect of the
attitude of Parliament was seen later in the Act abolishing internal and
local restrictions on the trade in woollen cloths (No. 20), in the
Statute of Monopolies (No. 19), and in the revocation by Charles in 1639
of patents granted during the period of personal government (No. 22).
The place occupied by monopolies in the Stuarts' fiscal system was
later, when the Civil War began, partially filled by the Excise (No.
23).


AUTHORITIES

   There is no book covering the commercial history of the whole period.
   The most useful works are:--Schanz, _Englische Handelspolitik gegen
   Ende des Mittelalters_; Cunningham, _English Industry and Commerce,
   Modern Times_, Part I; Scott, _Constitution and Finance of English
   Joint Stock Companies_; Busch, _England Under the Tudors_; Gardiner,
   _History of England 1603-1642_; Unwin, _Industrial Organization in
   the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries_; Rogers, _English Industrial
   and Commercial Supremacy_, and _The Economic Interpretation of
   History_; Ehrenberg, _Das Zeitalter der Fugger_; Price, _The English
   Patents of Monopoly_; Hewins, _English Trade and Finance in the
   Seventeenth Century_; Kennedy, _English Taxation, 1640-1799_;
   Schmoller, _Mercantilism_ (translated by Ashley); Keith, _Commercial
   Relations Between England and Scotland_; Murray, _Commercial
   Relations Between England and Ireland_; Beer, _The Old Colonial
   System_; Durham, _Relations of the Crown to Trade under James I_
   (Trans. R.H.S., New Series, Vol. XIII).

   The student may also consult the following:--

   (1) _Documentary Sources_:--Gairdner, Letters and Papers of Henry
   VIII; S.P. Dom. from 1558 to 1660; The Acts of the Privy Council; The
   Commons Journals; and the Statutes of the Realm, which are
   particularly instructive on the subject of commercial policy. An
   invaluable collection of documents is given by Schanz, _op. cit._,
   Vol. II; and useful, though smaller ones, by Scott, Price,
   Cunningham, and Unwin.

   (2) _Literary Sources_:--Starkey, Dialogue Between Cardinal Pole and
   Thomas Lupset; The Italian Narration of England (Camden E.E.T.S.
   Society, 1847); Dudley, The Tree of Commonwealth (1509); Drei
   Volkswirtschaftliche Denkschriften aus der Zeit Heinrich VIII von
   England, edited by Pauli; The Commonwealth of this Realm of England;
   Wilson, Discourse upon Usury (1572); Malynes, A Treatise of the
   Canker of England's Commonwealth (1601); Wheeler, Treatise of
   Commerce (1601); Malynes, Consuetudo vel Lex Mercatoria (1622);
   Misselden, Free Trade (1622); Bacon, History of King Henry VII
   (1622); Knowler, Letters and Despatches of Thomas Wentworth, Earl of
   Strafford; Robinson, England's Safety in Trade's Increase (1641).


1. LETTERS PATENT GRANTED TO THE CABOTS BY HENRY VII [_R.O. Pat. 4 Ed.
VI, p. 6_], 1496.

The King to all to whom, etc., greeting. It is manifest to us by
inspection of the rolls of our Chancery that the lord Henry the Seventh,
late King of England, our dearest grand father, caused his letters
patent to be made in these words:

Henry by the grace of God King of England and France and Lord of
Ireland, to all to whom the present letters shall come, greeting. Be it
known and manifest that we have given and granted, and by these presents
we do give and grant for us and our heirs to our beloved John Cabot,
citizen of Venice, and Lewis, Sebastian and Sanctus, sons of the said
John, and the heirs and deputies of them and every of them, full and
free authority, faculty and power to sail to all parts, regions and
gulfs of the sea, east, west and north, under our banners, standards,
and ensigns, with five ships or boats of whatsoever portage or kind they
be, and with as many sailors and men as they wish to take with them in
the said ships at their own and the others' costs and expenses, to find,
discover and search out any isles, countries, regions or provinces of
heathens and infidels whomsoever set in any part of the world soever,
which have been before these times unknown to all Christians. We have
granted also to the same and to every of them and to the heirs and
deputies of them and every of them, and given licence for them to affix
our aforesaid banners and ensigns in any town, castle, isle or solid
land soever newly found by them; and that the aforenamed John and his
sons or heirs and the deputies of the same may subjugate, occupy and
possess any such towns, castles and islands found by them which can be
subjugated, occupied and possessed, as our vassals and governors,
lieutenants and deputies of the same, acquiring for us the lordship,
title and jurisdiction of the same towns, castles, islands and solid
land so found; so, nevertheless, that of all fruits, profits,
emoluments, commodities, gains and obventions arising from such voyages,
the aforesaid John and his sons and heirs and their deputies be held and
bound to pay to us for every voyage, as often as they touch at our port
of Bristol, at which alone they are held and bound to touch, after
deducting the necessary costs and expenses made by them, a fifth part of
their capital gain made whether in wares or in money; giving and
granting to them and their heirs and deputies that they be free and
immune from all payment of customs on all and singular goods and wares
which they bring back with them from those places so newly found. And
further we have given and granted to the same and to their heirs and
deputies that all lands, farms, isles, towns, castles and places
whatsoever found by them, as many as shall be found by them, may not be
frequented or visited by any other our subjects soever without licence
of the aforesaid John and his sons and their deputies, under pain of
loss as well of the ships or boats as of all goods whatsoever presuming
to sail to those places so found; willing and most straitly commanding
all and singular our subjects set as well on land as on sea that they
give good assistance to the aforesaid John and his sons and deputies and
show all their favour and aid as well in manning the ships or boats as
in provision of equipment and victuals to be bought for their money and
all other things to be provided for them to be taken for the said
voyage. In witness whereof we have caused these our letters patent to be
made. Witness myself at Westminster, 5 April in the 11th year of our
reign.

And we, because the letters aforesaid have been lost by mischance, as
the aforesaid Sebastian, appearing in person before us in our Chancery,
has taken a corporal oath, and that he will restore those letters to us
into the same our Chancery to be cancelled there, if he shall find them
hereafter, have deemed fit to exemplify by these presents the tenour of
the enrolment of the letters aforesaid, at the request of the same
Sebastian. In witness whereof these our letters, etc. Witness the King
at Westminster, 4 June.


2. THE MERCHANT ADVENTURERS' CASE FOR ALLOWING THE EXPORT OF UNDRESSED
CLOTH [_Br. M. Cotton MS. Tib. D. VIII, f. 40_[303]], 1514-1536.

Considerations alleged by the governor and fellowship of merchant
adventurers to prove how it were more for the universal wealth of the
realm of England to convey and send over the sea to the markets
accustomed cloths of all prices, not dressed nor shorn, than cloths
dressed and shorn.

First it is to be noted, marked and considered, that in few years after
the act of Parliament made, that no sort of cloths draped and made
within the realm of England being above the price of five marks sterling
the piece should be conveyed over the sea undressed and unshorn, the
same sort of cloths, which at that day were bought for five marks, be
now at this present day by the industry of the said merchants uttering
the said cloths sold within the realm for four pounds sterling, which is
a great enriching of the whole realm, so that the said merchants think
it to stand with reason and conscience, that those sort of cloths, of
four pounds the piece, ought to be reputed and taken, in regard of the
act, after cloths of five marks the piece.

_Item_ the merchants of those parts buying English cloths will in no
wise meddle with any cloths, that be dressed, unless they may have them
at a price far under the foot; for it is in experience daily, that the
merchants of England conveying over the sea a sort of cloths every of
them being of like length and goodness, whereof the one half of them
have dressed and shorn and the other half undressed and unshorn, the
said merchants shall sell those cloths being undressed five shillings
dearer in every cloth, than those that be dressed; also those cloths
undressed be meet and ready for every man and the other dressed but only
for one man, so that against one cloth dressed the merchants of England
shall sell five hundred undressed, whereby it appeareth, that it were
for the common weal and great enriching to the realm of England to send
over into those parts all sorts of cloths undressed and but a singular
and private wealth to dress any such cloths; for there be many more in
number, that live by making of cloths and selling of the same, than
there be that live by dressing of cloths.

_Item_ the common people of those parts, by whom the most part of those
cloths be consumed, do use in their garments sundry colours not
accustomed to be worn here in England, which colours cannot be made,
unless they buy their cloths undressed; for the dressing of cloths here
and there vary and alter so much, that the dressing will take in manner
none of their colours. And in case the merchants of England should bring
over such cloths dressed, they should not only be undone in the sale of
them, but also it were to be doubted, that in brief time after they
would wholly relinquish the buying and wearing of any English cloths in
those parts, which God defend.

_Item_ there be certain coarse cloths named long Glemsters, and
notwithstanding their coarseness the King's Grace is paid for a cloth
and a third part in his custom; and if the buyer will cut off 6 or 8
yards of the said cloth, he may lawfully convey it over notwithstanding
the act, which should be a great loss in the sale and an occasion that
the strangers should not buy them, wherefore the said governor and
merchants say, that the said cloths ought of right to pass for cloths
under five marks the piece.

_Item_ at this present day, our Lord be thanked, there is shipped and
conveyed out of England into those parts more number of cloths of all
sorts and there uttered sold and consumed, than ever hath been in memory
of man; and considering, cloth is now there in such high estimation and
hath so good vent, the said merchants think, under correction, that it
were not necessary, but an utter peril and danger, to attempt them to
any other purpose to alter them out of this good trade, which our Lord
continue.

_Item_ the inhabitants of those parts by the make of English cloths in
frieze consume, waste and spend a great quantity and number of them,
which frieze undoubtedly after their using and wearing cannot be made of
English cloths dressed here, so that by the only means thereof it should
be a great diminution and decay to the common weal of this realm, if the
said act for dressing of cloths should take place or effect.

_Item_ the inhabitants of the realm of England have the buying and
selling of the wool, one with another, they have also the carding,
spinning, weaving, fulling and the first sale of such cloths, and the
inhabitants of those parts have only the dressing and shearing of
certain of the said cloths, whereby the inhabitants there been a little
relieved and a few number of them for a time set to work; yet by means
thereof the rulers and honest burgesses of the towns be desirous to have
the nation of England to haunt their said towns, and entertain them with
much familiarity and friendship. And it is much to be feared and
doubted, that if the realm of England should all covet and they to have
no relief nor comfort by the same, that they of Antwerp and other
places, studying their common weal, would not only find means ways and
occasions to expel the nation from them, but also that no English cloths
should be there consumed nor sold, which our Lord defend.

[Footnote 303: Quoted Schanz, Vol. II, pp. 571-3.]


3. THE RISE IN PRICES, THE ENCOURAGEMENT OF CORN-GROWING, AND THE
PROTECTION OF MANUFACTURES [_The Commonweal of this Realm of England_],
_c._ 1549.

_f. 17b-f. 20._

_Knight._ How can that be? What maketh it the matter what sort of coin
we have amongst ourselves, so it be current from one hand to another,
yea, if it were made of leather?

_Doctor._ Ye see, men commonly say so; but the truth is contrary; as not
only I could prove by common reason, but also that proof and experience
hath already declared the same. But now we do not reason of the causes
of these griefs, but what state of men be grieved indeed by this dearth
of things; and albeit I find every man grieved by it in one thing or
other, yet considering that, as many of them as have wares to sell, do
enhance as much in the price of all things that they sell as was
enhanced before in the price of things that they must buy; as the
merchant, if he buy dear, he will sell dear again. So the artificers, as
cappers, clothiers, shoemakers and farriers, have respect large enough,
in selling their wares, to the price of victual, wool and iron, which
they buy. I have seen a cap for 14d., as good as I can get now for 2s.
5d.; of cloth ye have heard how the price is risen. Then a pair of shoes
costeth me 12d. now, that I have in my days bought a better for 6d. Then
I can get never a horse shod under 10d. or 12d. [now], where I have seen
the common price was 6d. for shoeing of a horse round, yea, and 8d. (at
the most) till now of late. I cannot, therefore, understand that these
men have greatest grief by this common and universal dearth, but rather
such as have their livings and stipends rated at a certainty, as common
labourers at 6d. the day, journeymen of all occupations, serving men
[at] 40s. the year, and gentlemen whose lands are let out by them or
their ancestors either for lives or for term of years, so as they can
not enhance the rent thereof though they would, and yet have the price
enhanced by them of every thing that they buy. Yea the King's Highness,
whereof we spake nothing all this while, as he hath most of yearly
revenues and that certain, so hath he most lost by this dearth, and by
the alteration especially of the coin. For like as a man, that hath a
great number of servants under him, if he would grant that they should
pay him [pins] weekly where [before] they paid him [pence], I think he
should be most loser himself. So we be all but gatherers for the King's
Majesty, that be his subjects; we have but every man a poor living; the
clear gains cometh for the most [part] to the King's grace. Now if his
Grace do take of us the overplus of our getting in this new coin, where
he was wont to be paid in other good coin, I report me to you whether
that will go as far as the other, in proportion of his necessaries and
of the Realm. I think plainly no; for though his Highness might, within
his own realm, have things at his own price, as his Grace can not indeed
without great grudge of his magistrates and subjects; yea, since his
Majesty must have from beyond the seas many things necessary not only
for his Grace's household and ornaments, as well for his grace's person
and family, as of his horses, which [percase] might be by his Grace
somewhat moderated, but also for the furniture of his wars, which by no
means can be spared; as armour, and all kinds of artillery, anchors,
cables, pitch, tar, iron, steel, handguns, gunpowder, and many other
things more than I can reckon, which his Grace must needs buy from
beyond the seas, at the price the stranger will set him them at. I pass
over the enhancement of the charges of his Grace's household, which is
common to his grace with all other noble men. [Therefore], I say, his
Majesty hath most loss, by this common dearth, of all other; and not
only loss, but danger to the Realm and all his subjects, if his Grace
should want treasure to purchase the said habiliments and necessaries
for war, or to find soldiers in time of need, which passeth all other
private losses that we spake of.

_Capper._ We hear say, that the King's Majesty maketh up his losses that
way by the gains which he hath by the mint another way. If that be too
short, he supplieth that lack by subsidies and impositions of his
subjects, so as his Grace can not lack, so long as his subjects have it.

_Doctor._ You say well there. So long as the subjects have it, so it is
meet the King should have it; but what and they have it not? for they
cannot have it, when there is no treasure left within the realm. And as
touching the mint I account the profit much like as if a man would take
his wood up by the roots, to make [the more profit thereof at one time,
and ever after to lose] the profit that might grow thereof yearly, or to
pull the wool of his sheep by the root. And as for the subsidies; how
can they be large when the subjects have little to depart with? and yet
that way of gathering treasure is not always most safe for the prince's
surety; for we see many times the profits of such subsidies spent in
appeasing of the people that are moved to sedition partly by occasion
of the same....

       *       *       *       *       *

_f. 31b-f. 34._

_Doctor._ Mary, the first way [_sc._ to equalize the profits of tillage
and pasture-farming] is to make that wool be of as base a price [to] the
breeder thereof as the corn is; and that shall be, if you make alike
restraint of wools, for passing over the sea unwrought, as ye make of
corn. Ye have a law made that no corn shall pass over and it be above a
noble a quarter; if it be under ye give free liberty for it to pass
over; let wool be restrained likewise, for passing over, so long as it
is above 12s. 4d. the tod; and when it is under let it have free
passage; that is one way. Another is, to increase the custom of wool
that passeth over unwrought; and by that the price of it shall be based
to the breeders, and yet the price over the sea shall be never the less.
But that is increased in the price thereof [on] strangers shall come
unto the King's Highness; which is as profitable to the Realm as though
it came to the breeders, and might relieve them of their subsidies. Thus
far as touching the bringing down the price of wools; now to the
enhancing of the same price in corn, to be as equivalent to the
husbandman as wool should be. And that might be brought to pass if ye
will let it have as free passage over sea at all times, as ye have now
for wool.

_Merchant._ By the first two ways men would send less wool over sea than
they do now; and, by that way, the King's customs and profits of his
staple should be minished; by your latter way, the price of corn should
be much enhanced, wherewith men should be much grieved.

_Doctor._ I wot well it would be dear at the first; but if I can
persuade you that it were reasonable it were so, and that the same could
be no hindrance to the Realm universally, but great profit to the same,
then I think we would be content it should be so; and as touching the
King's custom, I will speak afterward.

_Merchant._ I will grant, if you can show me that.

_Doctor._ I will essay it, albeit the matter be somewhat intricate, and
as I showed you before, at the first face will displease many; for they
will say, Would you make corn dearer than it is? Have you dearth enough
else without that? Nay I pray you find means to have it better cheap, if
it may be, it is dear enough already; and such other like reasons would
be said. But now let the husbandman answer such men again. Have not the
grazers raised the price of your wools and pelts? and you merchant men,
clothiers and cappers, raised the price of your merchandize and wares
over it was wont to be in manner double? Is it not as good reason then I
should raise the price of my corn? What reason is it that you should be
at large, and I to be restrained? Either let us all be restrained
together, or else let us all be at like liberty. Ye may sell [your wool]
over the sea, your fells, your tallow, your cheese, your butter, your
leather, which riseth all by grazings, at your pleasure, and that for
the dearest penny ye can get for them. And I shall not send out my corn,
except it be at 10d. the bushel or under. That is as much to say, as we
that be husbandmen should not sell our wares, except it be for nothing,
or for so little we shall not be able to live thereof. Think you that if
the husbandman here did speak these words, that he did not speak them
reasonable?

_Husbandman._ I thank you with all my heart; for you have spoken in the
matter more than I could do myself, and yet nothing but that is true. We
felt the harm, but we wist not what was the cause thereof; many of us
saw, 12 years ago, that our profits was but small by the ploughs; and
therefore divers of my neighbours that had, in times past, some two,
some three, some four ploughs of their own, have laid down, some of them
[part, and some of them all] their teams, and turned either part or all
their arable ground into pasture, and thereby have waxed very rich men.
And every day some of us encloseth a [plot] of his ground to pasture;
and were it not that our ground lieth in the common fields, intermingled
one with another, I think also our fields had been enclosed, of a common
agreement of all the township, long ere this time. And to say the truth,
I, that have enclosed little or nothing of my ground, could [never be
able] to make up my lord's rent were it not for a little breed of neat,
sheep, swine, geese, and hens that I do rear upon my ground; whereof,
because the price is somewhat round, I make more clear profit than I do
of all my corn; and yet I have but a bare living, by reason that many
things do belong to husbandry which now be exceeding chargeable over
they were in times past.

_Capper._ Though this reason of master doctor's here doth please you
well that be husbandmen, yet it pleaseth us that be artificers nothing
at all, which must buy both bread, corn and malt for our penny. And
whereas you, master doctor, say it were as good reason that the
husbandman would raise the price of his corn, and have as free vent of
the same over sea as we [do and have of our wares], I cannot greatly
deny that; but yet I say, that every man hath need of corn, and so they
have not of other wares so much.

_Doctor._ Therefore the more necessary that corn is, the more be the men
to be cherished that reared it; for if they see there be not so much
profit in using the plough as they see in other feats, think you not
that they will leave that trade, and fall to the other that they see
more profitable? as ye may perceive by the doings of this honest man's
neighbours, which have turned their arable land to pasture, because they
see more profit by pasture than by tillage. Is it not an old saying in
[Latin], _honos alit artes_, that is to say, profit or advancement
nourisheth every faculty; which saying is so true, that it is allowed by
the common judgement of all men. We must understand also that all things
that should be done in a common wealth be not to be forced, or to be
constrained by the straight penalties of the law; but some so, and some
other by allurement and rewards rather. For what law can compel men to
be industrious in travail, and labour of their bodies, or studious to
learn any science or knowledge of the mind? to these things they may be
well provoked, encouraged, and allured, if they that be industrious and
painful be well rewarded for their pains, and be suffered to take gains
and wealth as reward of their labours. And so likewise [they] that be
learned, if they be advanced and honoured according to their forwardness
in learning, every man will then study either to be industrious in
bodily labour, or studious in things that pertain to knowledge. Take
this reward from them, and go about to compel them by laws thereto, what
man will plough or dig the ground, or exercise any manual occupation
wherein is any pain? Or who will adventure over seas for any
merchandise? or use any faculty wherein any peril or danger should be,
seeing his reward shall be no more than his that sitteth still? But ye
will percase answer me, that all their rewards shall not be taken away,
but part of it. Yet then you must grant me, that as if all their rewards
were taken from them, all these faculties must needs decay; so if part
of that reward be minished, the use of those faculties shall minish
withall, after the rate; and so they shall be the less occupied, the
less they be rewarded and esteemed. But now to our purpose; I think it
more necessary to devise a mean how husbandry might be more occupied,
rather than less, which I cannot perceive how it may be brought to pass,
but as men do see the more gains therein, the gladder they will occupy
the feat. And this to be true [that] some things in a common wealth must
be forced with pains and some by rewards allured [may appear] by that
that the wise and politic senator Tully writeth, saying, that it was the
words of Solon, which was one of the seven men of Greece, and of those
seven the only man that made laws, that a common wealth was holden up by
things chiefly, that is, by reward and pain; of which words I gather
that men should be provoked to good deeds by rewards and price, and [to]
abstain from evil doings by pains. Trow you, if husbandmen be not better
cherished and provoked than they be to exercise to plough, but in
process of time so many ploughs will be laid down (as I fear me there be
already) that if an unfruitful year should happen amongst, us, as
commonly doth once in seven years, we should then not have only dearth,
but also such scarceness of corn, that we should be driven to seek it
from outward parts, and pay dear for it....

       *       *       *       *       *

_f. 34b-f. 38._

_Doctor._ You have heard that by the free vent and sale of corn, the
husbandman's profit is advanced. Then it is showed how every man
naturally will follow that wherein he seeth most profit. Therefore men
will the gladder occupy husbandry. And the more do occupy husbandry, the
more plenty of corn must needs be; and the more plenty of corn there is,
thereof better cheap; and also the more will be spared over that that
shall suffice the realm; and then, that may be spared in a good year
shall bring us again other corn, or else the commodities of other
countries necessary for us. Then the more husbandry is occupied, the
more universal breed should be of all victuals, as of neat, sheep,
swine, geese, eggs, butter, and cheese, for all these are reared much of
corn.

_Knight._ If men should sell, when a good reasonable year is, all that
is overplus when the realm is served, what should we do if a barren year
should happen, when no store of corn is left of the good year before?

_Doctor._ First, you must consider that men be sure they will keep
enough to serve themselves within the realm, or they sell any forth of
the same; and having liberty to sell at their pleasure, doubt ye not,
but they had liefer sell their corn 2d. or 4d. better cheap within the
realm, than to be at charges with carrying, and peril of adventure, in
sending it over the sea, and sell it dearer (except it be for much more
gains). And thus men, being provoked with lucre, will keep the more
corn, looking for a dear year in the country, whereby must need be the
greater store. And though they did not so, but should sell over the sea
all that they might spare over that serveth the realm when the year is
plentiful, yet by reason that, through the means aforesaid, more ploughs
are set to work than would suffice the realm in a plentiful year, if a
scarce year should fall after, the corn of so many ploughs, as in a good
year would be more than enough, in [an unfruitful] year at the least
should be sufficient to serve the realm. And so should the realm be
served with enough of corn in a scarce year, and in a plenteous year no
more than enough, which might be sold over the sea for great treasure or
other commodities; where now, in a plentiful year, we seek to have as
much as may suffice the realm. Then if a scarce year should happen, we
must needs lack of our own to serve, and be driven to buy from beyond
the sea. And then, if they were as envious as we are, might they not
say, when we required any corn of them, that seeing they could get none
from us, when we had plenty, why should they let us have any corn when
we have scarcity? Surely common reason would that one region should help
another when it lacketh. And therefore God hath ordained that no country
should have all commodities; but that, that one lacketh, another
bringeth forth, and that, that one country lacketh this year, another
hath plenty thereof the same year, to the intent that one may know they
have need of another's help, and thereby love and society to grow
amongst all the more. But here we will do as though we had need of no
other country in the earth, but to live all of ourselves; and [as]
though we might make the market of all things as we list ourselves; for
though God is bountiful unto us and sendeth us many great commodities,
yet we could not live without the commodities of others. And, for an
ensample, of iron [and] salt, though we have competently thereof, yet we
have not the third part to suffice the realm; and that [can] in no wise
be spared if we will occupy husbandry. Then tar, resin, pitch, oil,
steel, we have none at all; as for wines, spices, linen cloth, silks,
and collars, though we might live so without them, yet far from any
civility should it be. As I deny not [but many things we might have here
sufficiently that we buy now beyond the seas, and] many things we might
spare wholly; whereof, if time shall serve, I will talk more hereafter.
But now to return to the first point that I spake of before, to be one
of the means to bring husbandry up, that is by abasing the estimation of
wool and fells; though I take not that way to be as good as the other,
for I do not allow that mean that may base any of our commodities except
it be for the enhancement of a better commodity, but if both commodities
may be enhanced together, as by the last device I think they might be, I
allow that way better; nevertheless whereas you, brother merchant,
showed before that either by restraining of wools or other commodities,
till they were equivalent within the realm after the rate of the corn,
or by enhancing the custom of wool and other the said commodities, were
brought like to the corn in proportion, the King's Highness' custom
should be minished, I think not so. For the one way, as much as he
should have for the more wool vented over, so much should he have for
the less wool at a greater custom vented over. And the other way is, as
much as his Grace should lose by his custom of wool, so much or more
should his Grace win by the custom of clothes made within the realm. But
one thing I do note by this latter device, that if they should take
place, we must do; that is, if we keep within us much of our
commodities, we must spare many other things that we have now from
beyond the seas; for we must always take heed that we buy no more of
strangers than we sell them [for so we should empoverish ourselves and
enrich them]. For he were no good husband that hath no other yearly
revenues but of husbandry to live on, that will buy more in the market
than he selleth again. And that is a point we might save much by of our
treasure, in this realm, if we would. And I marvel no man taketh heed
unto it, what number first of trifles cometh hither from beyond the
seas, that we might either clean spare, or else make them within our own
realm, for the which we pay inestimable treasure every year, or else
exchange substantial wares and necessary for them, for the which we
might receive great treasure. Of the which sort I mean glasses, as well
looking as drinking, as to glass windows, dials, tables, cards, balls,
puppets, penhorns, inkhorns, toothpicks, gloves, knives, daggers,
pouches, brooches, agletes, buttons of silk and silver, earthen pots,
pins, points, hawk's bells, paper both white and brown, and a thousand
like things, that might either be clean spared, or else made within the
realm sufficient for us. And as for some things, they make it of our own
commodities and send it us again; whereby they set their people on work,
and do exhaust much treasure out of this realm. As of our wool they make
cloth, caps, and carses; of our fells they make Spanish skins, gloves,
girdles; of our tin, salts, spoons and dishes; of our broken linen cloth
and rags, paper both white and brown. What treasure, think you, goeth
out of this realm for every of these things? And then for all together
it exceedeth my estimation. There is no man that can be contented with
any other gloves than is made in France or in Spain; or carse, but it
must be of Flanders dye; nor cloth, but it must be of French dye or
fresadow; nor brooch nor aglet, but of Venice making or Milanese; nor
dagger, sword, nor girdle, or knife, but of Spanish making; no, not so
much as a spur, but it must be fetched at the milliner's hand. I have
seen within these twenty years, when there were not of these
haberdashers that sell French or Milan caps, glasses, as well looking as
drinking, yea, all manner vessels of the same stuff; painted cruses, gay
daggers, knives, swords, and girdles that is able to make any temperate
man to gaze on them, and to buy somewhat, though it serve to no purpose
necessary. What need they beyond the sea to travel to Peru or such far
country, or to try out the sands of the river Tagus in Spain [Pactolus]
in Asia and Ganges in India, to get amongst them small sparks of gold,
or to dig the bowels of the earth, for the mine of silver and gold, when
they can of unclean clay, not far sought for, and of [pebble] stones
and fern roots make [good] gold and silver more than a great many of
gold mines would make. I think not so little as a hundred thousand pound
a year is fetched of our treasure for things of no value of themselves,
but only for the labours of the workers of the same, which are set on
work all of our charges. What grossness be we of, that see it and suffer
such a continual spoil to be made of our goods and treasure, by such
means and specially, that will suffer our own commodities to go, and set
strangers on work, and then to buy them again at their hands; as of our
wool they make and dye carses, fresadows, broadcloths, and caps beyond
the seas, and bring them hither to be sold again; wherein note, I pray
you, what they do make us pay at the end for our stuff again, for the
stranger custom, for the workmanship, and colours, and lastly for the
second custom in the return of the wares into the realm again; whereas,
with working the same within our realm, our own men should be set on
work at the charges of strangers; the custom should be borne all by
strangers to the king, and the clear gains to remain within the
realm....

       *       *       *       *       *

_f. 53b-f. 55._

And now, because we are entered into communication of artificers, I will
make this division of them. Some of them do but bring money out of the
country; some other, that which they do get, they spend again in the
country; and the third sort of artificers be they that do bring treasure
into the country. Of the first, I reckon all mercers, grocers, vintners,
haberdashers, milliners, and such as do sell wares growing beyond the
seas, and do fetch out our treasure of the same. Which kind of
artificers, as I reckon them tolerable, and yet are not so necessary in
a commonwealth but they might be best spared of all other; yet if we had
not other artificers, to bring in as much treasure as they bring forth,
we should be great losers by them. Of the second sort be these:
shoemakers, tailors, carpenters, masons, tilers, butchers, brewers,
bakers, victuallers of all sorts, which like as they get their living in
the country, so they spend it; but they bring in no treasure unto us.
Therefore we must [cherish] well the third sort; and these be clothiers,
tanners, cappers, and worsted makers only that I know, [which] by their
misteries and faculties, do bring in any treasure. As for our wool,
fells, tin, lead, butter and cheese, these be the commodities that the
ground bears, requiring the industry of a few persons; and if we should
only trust to such, and devise nothing else to occupy ourselves, a few
persons would serve us for the rearing of such things, and few also [it
would] find; and so should the realm be like a [grange], better
furnished with beasts than with men; whereby it might be subject to the
spoil of other nations about. Which is the more to be feared and
eschewed, because the country of his own kind is apt to bring forth such
things, as is said before, for the breed of cattle, than for such things
as [be] for the nourishment of men, if Pomponius Mela be to be believed,
which describing the island, saith thus: _plana, ingens, fecunda, verum
iis que pecora quam homines benignius alunt_. That is to say, it is
plain, large and plentiful, but of those things that nourisheth beasts
more kindly than men. So many forests, chases, parks, marshes and waste
grounds, that be more here than most commonly elsewhere, declare the
same not to be all in vain that he affirms; that hath not so much arable
ground, vines, olives, fruits, and such as be most necessary for the
food of men. And as they require many hands in the culture, so they find
most persons food; as France, Spain and divers other countries have.
Therefore as much ground, as here is apt for those things, would be
[turned] (as much as may be) to such uses as may find most persons. And
over that, towns and cities would be replenished with all kinds of
artificers; not only clothiers which as yet were our natural occupation,
but with cappers, glovers, paper makers, glasiers, pointers, goldsmiths,
blacksmiths of all sorts, coverlet makers, needle makers, pinners and
such other; so as we should not only have enough of such things to serve
our realm, and save an infinite treasure that goeth now over for so many
of the same, but also might spare of such things ready wrought to be
sold over, whereby we should fetch again other necessary commodities and
treasures. And thus should be both replenished the realm of people able
to defend it, and also win much treasure to the same. Such occupations
alone do enrich divers countries, that be else barren of themselves; and
what riches they bring to the country where they be well used, the
country of Flanders and Germany do well declare; where, through such
occupations, it hath so many and wealthy cities, that were incredible
in so little ground to be. Wherefore in my mind they are far wide of
right consideration, that would have none or less clothing within the
realm, because it is sometimes occasion of business or tumults, for lack
of vent. There is nothing every way so commodious or necessary for men's
use, but it is sometime by ill handling occasion of displeasure; no, not
fire and water, that be so necessary as nothing can be more.


4. SIR THOMAS GRESHAM ON THE FALL OF THE EXCHANGES [_Burgon's Life and
Times of Sir Thomas Gresham, Vol. I, Appendix No. XXI, pages 483-486_].
1558.

To the Queen's most excellent Majesty.

It may please your Majesty to understand, that the first occasion of the
fall of the exchange did grow by the King's Majesty, your late father,
in abasing his coin from vi ounces fine to iii ounces fine. Whereupon
the exchange fell from xxvis. viiid. to xiiis. ivd. which was the
occasion that all your fine gold was conveyed out of this your realm.

Secondly, by the reason of his wars, the King's Majesty fell into great
debt in Flanders. And for the payment thereof they had no other device
but pay it by exchange, and to carry over his fine gold for the payment
of the same.

Thirdly, the great freedom of the Steelyard and granting of licence for
the carrying of your wool and other commodities out of your realm, which
is now one of the chief points that your Majesty hath to foresee in this
your common weal; that you never restore the steads called the Steelyard
again to their privilege, which hath been the chief point of the undoing
of this your realm, and the merchants of the same.

Now, for redress of these things, in an. xvcli [1551] the King's
Majesty, your late brother, called me to be his agent, and reposed a
more trust in me, as well for the payment of his debts beyond the seas,
as for the raising of the exchange, being then at xvs. and xvis. the
pound; and your money current, as it is at this present, being not in
value xs. First, I practised with the King and my lord of Northumberland
to overthrow the Steelyard, or else it could not be brought to pass, for
that they would keep down the exchange by this consideration; whereas
your own merchants payeth outwards xivd. upon a cloth custom, they pay
but ixd.; and likewise, for all such wares as was brought into your
realm, your own mere merchants payeth xiid. upon the pound, the
Steelyard paid but iiid. upon the pound, which is vs. difference upon
the hundredth: and as they were men that ran all upon the exchange for
the buying of their commodities, what did they pass to give a lower
price than your own merchants, when they got vl. in the hundred by your
custom? Which in process of time would have undone your whole realm, and
your merchants of the same.

Secondly, I practised with the King's Majesty, your brother, to come in
credit with his own mere merchants: and when time served, I practised
with them at a set shipping, the exchange being still at xvis., that
every man should pay the King xvs. upon a cloth in Antwerp, to pay at
double usage xxs. in London; which the King's Majesty paid them royally,
which did amount to the sum of lxml. And so, vi months after, I
practised the like upon their commodities for the sum of lxxml.
[£70,000] to pay for every pound sterling xxiis.: so by this means, I
made plenty of money, and scarcity, and brought into the King's hands,
which raised, the exchange to xxiiis. ivd. And by this means I did not
only bring the King's Majesty, your brother, out of debt, whereby I
saved him vi or viis. upon the pound, but saved his treasure within the
realm, as therein Mr. Secretary Cecil was most privy unto.

Thirdly, I did likewise cause all foreign coins to be unvalued, whereby
it might be brought into the mint to his Majesty's most fordle[304]; at
which time the King your brother died, and for my reward of service, the
Bishop of Winchester sought to undo me, and whatsoever I said in these
matters I should not be credited: and against all wisdom, the said
Bishop went and valued the French crown at vis. ivd., and the pistole at
vis. iid., and the silver royal at vid. _ob._ Whereupon, immediately,
the exchange fell to xxs. vid. and xxis., and there hath kept ever
since. And so consequently after this rate and manner, I brought the
Queen's Majesty, your sister, out of debt of the sum of ccccxxxvml.
[£435,000].

Fourthly, by this it may plainly appear to your Highness, as the
exchange is the thing that eats out all princes, to the whole
destruction of their common weal, if it be not substantially looked
unto, so likewise the exchange is the chief and richest thing only
above all other, to restore your Majesty and your realm to fine gold and
silver, and is the mean that makes all foreign commodities and your own
commodities with all kind of victuals good cheap, and likewise keeps
your fine gold and silver within your realm. As, for example to your
Highness, the exchange being at this present at xxiis., all merchants
seek to bring into your realm fine gold and silver; for if he should
deliver it by exchange, he disburses xxiis. Flemish to have xxs.
sterling: and to bring it in gold and silver he shall make thereof xxis.
ivd.--whereby he saves viiid. in the pound: which profit, if the
exchange should keep but after this rate of xxiis. in few years you
should have a wealthy realm, for here the treasure should continue for
ever; for that all men should find more profit by vl. in the hundred to
deliver it per exchange, than to carry it over in money. So consequently
the higher the exchange riseth, the more shall your Majesty and your
realm and common weal flourish, which thing is only kept up by art and
God's providence; for the coin of this your realm doth not correspond in
fineness not xs. the pound.

Finally, and it please your majesty to restore this your realm into such
state, as heretofore it hath been; first, your Highness hath no other
ways, but when time and opportunity serveth, to bring your base money
into fine of xi ounces fine, and so gold after the rate.

Secondly, not to restore the Steelyard to their usurped privileges.

Thirdly, to grant as few licences as you can.

Fourthly, to come in as small debt as you can beyond seas.

Fifthly, to keep up your credit, and specially with your own merchants,
for it is they must stand by you at all events in your necessity. And
thus I shall most humbly beseech your Majesty to accept this my [poor
writing in good] part; wherein I shall from time to time, as opportunity
doth serve, put your Highness in remembrance, according to the trust
your Majesty hath reposed in me; beseeching the Lord to give me the
grace and fortune that my service may always be acceptable to your
Highness; as knoweth our Lord, whom preserve your noble Majesty in
health, and long to reign over us with increase of honour.

By your Majesty's most humble and faithful obedient subject,

THOMAS GRESHAM, _Mercer_.

[Footnote 304: _i.e._ Fordeal, or advantage.]


5. THE REASONS WHY BULLION IS EXPORTED [_Br. M. Cotton Ms. Otho. E. x.,
f. 145_[305]], _temp._ ELIZABETH.

Where the Queen's Majesty is moved, that for the staying of the
transportation of gold she will be pleased either to call in all gold by
proclamation and then to coin it anew again with more alloy, or else
that her Majesty should call in no gold, but coin new and utter them at
higher rate than now, it seemeth the matters intend, that it is
transported for the richness only, and, being either based by alloy or
dearly priced, no more would be transported.

But if all the true causes of this late transportation be considered,
that will not be sufficient to stay gold within.

The true causes, that it is transported, be these with others:

1. Some is carried into the Low Countries, because the exchange hath
been high and the gold of greater prices there than here.

2. These dear years much hath been carried out to buy corn with, wherein
somewhat endeavour hath been, because the return paid no custom.

3. Very much hath been transported to provide foreign commodities,
because this realm spendeth more of them, than the same commodities
transported amount unto, as it is supposed and as may be perceived by
the wines, silks, lawns, gold-lace, silver-lace and such like here
spent.

4. Much is conveyed by strangers, that bring in their country
commodities and will not employ the price in English commodities,
because their customs be great.

5. The like is sometimes done by English merchants for the paying of
debts or providing of foreign commodities, for the saving of custom
outward being also great.

6. Much bullion hath been transported, because the merchants and
goldsmiths could not of long time have it coined and delivered in due
time out of the mint.

7. Some by captains, soldiers and others, that might not be searched.

8. Some by the help of the mintmen in thirty-shilling-pieces upon
pretence to make great gain thereof to her Majesty.

The second cause will now cease of itself; the fourth, fifth, sixth and
eighth may be removed by good orders to be taken; the seventh by peace
amongst princes; the first will never be taken away further than shall
please the bankers and rich merchants of the Low Countries, who joining
with the rich Flemings dwelling will be able with their money and
cunning to make the exchange to rise and fall, as they shall think good
for their gain or our loss. And the governors there, finding by their
mint-masters and merchants the alteration of the English standards and
values of gold, being more vigilant, provident and skilful in such
matters than the English, will at their pleasures cry up and down the
currency of English coin, be it never so base, at such times and in such
manner as [the]y will, draw it from home to their ... lnes and melt it
or return it back at their pleasures for their own gain and our loss,
unless they will agree and take order, that it shall be always current
there at the same value that it is here, without alteration.

But the third _causa causarum_ being taken away, which is to be wished
for, although not to be hoped for in haste, all the rest and all other
like causes of transportation must need cease withall or at the least do
little hurt; for if England would spend less of foreign commodities than
the home commodities will pay for, then the remain must of necessity be
returned of silver or gold; but if otherwise, then it will fare in
England in short time as it doth with a man of great yearly living, that
spendeth more yearly than his own revenue, and spendeth of the stock
besides.

And so it is concluded, that for these reasons neither the baseing of
the standards nor the raising of the values of the coin of gold is like
to stay it from transportation.

[Footnote 305: Quoted Schanz. _op. cit._, Vol. II, pp. 648-9.]


6. THE ITALIAN MERCHANTS EXPLAIN THE FOREIGN EXCHANGES TO SIR THOMAS
GRESHAM AND OTHER ROYAL COMMISSIONERS [_Ms. of Lord Calthorpe, Vol. XX,
f. 68_[306]], 1576.

Forasmuch as your worships have required, that we, the merchants
Italians, should show present your worships with more brevity, than we
have done afore, in what points doth grieve us the new imposition and
order, that hath been set upon the exchange, although it is not easily
utter it in few words, nevertheless we have set it forth as briefly as
we can.

Therefore it may please your worships to understand, that the chiefest
living and maintenance that we have is upon the commissions that are
sent unto us of our friends from beyond the seas to sell foreign wares
here in London and buy English wares for to send over.

The trade of the foreign wares for England will much decay because of
the imposition and difficulty upon the exchange; for such our friends,
that did send such commodities as alum, woad, canvas, silks, wines and
other necessary things for the intent to reiterate shortly after the
sending hither such commodities, so soon as they knew they were here
arrived, did use to take up money by exchange for London; and if the
said wares were not sold or money not due, they gave here commission to
their factors to take it up by rechange again; and so in time of an
usage or double usage of Antwerp, an usage or a fair at Lyons, this
matter might be well compassed without any great loss, and by this mean
they might help themselves with their money of their wares a great while
before that it were money in deed; but now that they shall know, that
the exchange will give them such loss by the payment of this fee besides
the ordinary interest that is used to come upon the exchange, they shall
not be able to continue this trade nor to reiterate so often the same.
Therefore there shall ensue a great diminishing of the Queen's custom
inwards, and that the English people shall pay the dearer for the
necessary foreign commodities, and we particularly shall remain
destitute of these commissions and factories.

We say likewise of the trade of others our commissioners, that did use
to send for English commodities as cloths and others being not forbidden
and inward, they send nothing or very little; for those, that ought here
to buy for themselves, might in two manners furnish the money, the one
causing money to be remitted unto them from beyond the seas, and the
other in taking money here in London by exchange. Touching the first
manner they shall lack much of that help; for money shall not be
remitted unto them, for because in foreign places there shall be found
no man that will take up money by exchange for London, knowing that it
shall be more damageable unto them than other places as much as this fee
doth import, which will always fall upon the debtor, and he shall
scarcely find money here in London to take up by exchange; so little
will be exchange that hereafter will be made, therefore our commission
outward will fail unto us, as we have said above of these inward, and
the Queen's customs outwards also will much decay, and the English
people, that did utter at good prices the commodities and handicrafts,
shall not be able to do it as afore they were, they shall suffer much
damage and discommodity. Besides this the free exchange hath been an
instrument whereby the merchants might pay honourably their debts at
their day; for if one ought, for a manner of an example, this day a sum
of money, it should be a dishonour unto him to desire his creditors to
tarry a seven night, a fortnight or 20 days, until he should retain
money for debts due unto him. But to pay his said debt, he might
presently take up money by exchange to Lyons, Antwerp and then, after he
had received his money, he might remit there for the same time that he
took it up, and so with little loss compass his business. But now in
such case considering that he shall be forced to pay two times this
imposition one in the taking and the other in the delivering so shortly
after, the interest of few days will cost him too much; therefore he
shall be fain to restrain his trade and shall not be able to accept his
friends' debts and changes he did before.

Likewise those of us shall find too much charges, that made double
exchanges for service of the English merchants, as for example they took
money of your vintners for Bordeaux, and to the intent that the said
money might be ready there, they did exchange it for Lyons or other
places being content of any small profit; now that they must pay two
times this imposition and that the ordinary brokerage, that often times
they did save, they now shall not save, they shall need to make their
reckoning and ask greater price of the vintners, the which peradventure
will find it so heavy beside his part of the fee which he must pay, that
he might take an evil occasion to send over the money.

We made also oftentimes amongst us double exchanges without any broker,
which was, for a manner of example, that one of us had money in Venice
and would bring into this realm French wares, and another hath money in
Lyons and would bring wares out of Italy, and so they did agree together
to give one to another mutual letters of exchange the one for Lyons and
the other for Venice; and whereas such double exchange of the value of
100_li._ had no charge at all, now it shall have charge 35s., for the
fee shall be paid for every one of the 2 bills of exchange, which is
25s. and 10s. brokerage, that now is not to be escaped, maketh up the
35s., so that we shall be fain utterly to leave of these double
exchanges, that we made as well for the commodity of the merchants of
your nation as of ourselves to the intent still to serve to the ease and
trade of merchandise.

But[307] the order yet is of more trouble and impediment, than the very
imposition; for though the fee were in a manner but a penny in every
hundredth pound, it were needful to find a means that the Queen's
Majesty should not be defrauded of the same, the which we cannot invent
or imagine, without that register shall be kept of all our doings and
that our books shall be seen and our letters opened, the which thing
will be an extreme prejudice unto our occupations, and we would have
taken pain more at large to express the same, if that your worships had
not the experience and knowledge better than us of this matter.

Touching the standard of the English money, that you complain of is kept
low by reason of the free exchange, we can say nothing but that our
exchanges are made with a mutual consent between merchant and merchant,
and that the abundance of the deliverers or of the takers make the
exchange rise or fall; and this occasion doth counterpoise this place of
London with the others; for if you will compel a needful person to take
up for exchange for Antwerp at 26s. Flemish for every pound sterling,
when the exchange is there at 24s., he shall leave off to take it, but
will cause money to be remitted to him from thence according to the
course of the exchange there.

But some do complain of some strangers, that bring into England
merchandises for more value than that they send out. We say, that the
cause of this is the inequalities of the customs outwards; for a
stranger cannot send into Flanders or into France a piece of cloth or
kersey, except it should stand him dearer than he might have them there
in those places at an Englishman's hands. Besides that it is to be
considered, that the most part of commodities of this realm, that in
times before might be transported out, now they be utterly forbidden as
well corn, leather, tallow, or else charged with great licence as
undressed cloths and others, so that it is not possible for strangers to
meddle there withall; nevertheless we do deny, that the overplus of the
amounting of the strange wares should be sent over by us in ready money,
but we deliver it by exchange unto your English merchants, that may
better traffic outwardly, and if we do at lower price than the value of
the standard, we are very sorry and we would very gladly it were
otherwise.

That be the damages difficulties and inconveniences, that by this order
shall happen, that is to say, for our part the whole destitution of all
our friends' commission, whereupon was grounded our living and
maintenance; damage unto Queen's Majesty for the diminishing of her
customs for greater sum than the importance of the rent of this fee,
though that exchanges should be in such frequency and number as they
have been heretofore; the which thing cannot be, for very few exchange
will be made; damage also to the common weal, for they shall pay dear
for foreign wares for the scarcity that shall be here of the same, and
they shall not so well sell the commodities of the realm, as they have
done afore; and finally a dangerous occasion may be presented to some to
carry away the money out of the realm, the which thing the free exchange
doth avoid, and for this intent it is to be thought that it was
instituted.

Therefore we, considering that among all restraints, troubles or
impediments, that ever was set against the trade of merchants in any
place, this is the troublesomest, we beseech your worships to examine it
and to report to her Majesty and to her honourable council upon this
matter even as God Almighty shall inspire you for the common profit and
wealth of this realm.

[Footnote 306: Quoted Schanz, _op. cit._, pp. 642-6. It will be observed
that the Italian merchants' knowledge of English is apparently somewhat
defective.]

[Footnote 307: "Bothe" in MS.]


7. AN ACT AVOIDING DIVERS FOREIGN WARES MADE BY HANDICRAFTSMEN BEYOND
THE SEAS [_5 Eliz. c. 7, Statutes of the Realm, Vol. IV, Part I, pp.
428-429_], 1562.

Whereas heretofore the artificers of this realm of England (as well
within the city of London as within other cities, towns and boroughs of
the same realm) that is to wit, girdlers, cutlers, saddlers, glovers,
point-makers, and such like handicraftsmen, have been in the said
faculties greatly wrought, and greatly set on work, as well for the
sustentation of themselves, their wives and families, as for a good
education of a great part of the youth of this realm in good art and
laudable exercise, besides the manifold benefits, that by means or by
reason of their knowledges, inventions, and continual travel, daily and
universally came to the whole estate of the commonwealth of this said
realm:

II. Yet notwithstanding so now it is, that by reason of the abundance of
foreign wares brought into this realm from the parts of beyond the seas,
the said artificers are not only less occupied, and thereby utterly
impoverished, the youth not trained in the said sciences and exercises,
and thereby the said faculties, and the exquisite knowledges thereof,
like in short time within this realm to decay; but also divers cities
and towns within this realm of England much thereby impaired, the whole
realm greatly endamaged, and other countries notably enriched, and the
people thereof well set on work, to their commodities and livings, in
the arts and sciences aforesaid, and to the great discouragement of
skilful workmen of this realm, being in very deed nothing inferior to
any stranger in the faculties aforesaid.

III. For reformation whereof, be it enacted by our sovereign lady the
Queen's Highness, and by the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and the
Commons of this present parliament assembled and by the authority of the
same, that no person or persons whatsoever, from or after the feast of
the Nativity of St. John Baptist now next ensuing, shall bring or cause
to be brought into this realm of England from the parts of beyond the
seas, any girdles, harness for girdles, rapiers, daggers, knives, hilts,
pummels, lockets, chapes, dagger-blades, handles, scabbards, and sheaths
for knives, saddles, horse-harness, stirrups, bits, gloves, points,
leather-laces or pins, being ready made or wrought in any parts of
beyond the seas, to be sold, bartered or exchanged within this realm of
England or Wales; upon pain to forfeit all such wares so to be brought
contrary to the true meaning of this act, in whose hands soever they or
any of them shall be found, or the very value thereof. This act to
continue and endure to the end of the next parliament.


8. AN ACT TOUCHING CLOTH-WORKERS AND CLOTHS READY WROUGHT TO BE SHIPPED
OVER THE SEA [_8 Eliz. c. 6, Statutes of the Realm, Vol. IV, Part I, p.
489_], 1566.

For the better employment and relief of great multitudes of the Queen's
Majesty subjects, using the art and labour of cloth-working, it may
please the Queen's most excellent Majesty, at the most humble suit of
her said subjects, that it be enacted, and be it enacted by the
authority of this present parliament:--That from henceforth for every
nine clothes unwrought, hereafter to be shipped or carried into any the
parts beyond the seas, contrary to the form of any statute heretofore
made and now remaining in strength, by force of any licence hereafter to
be granted, the party that shall ship and carry over the same, shall
ship and carry over also one like woollen cloth of like sort, length,
breadth and goodness, ready wrought and dressed; that is to say, rowed,
barbed, first coursed and shorn from the one end to the other, so that
every tenth cloth passing over the seas in form aforesaid may and shall
be dressed within this realm, before the same shall be shipped or
transported over, upon pain to forfeit for every such nine clothes so to
be shipped or transported contrary to the meaning of this act, ten
pounds. Provided always, that every such tenth cloth so to be
transported ready wrought, shall not be accounted any of the clothes
permitted to be transported by force of such licence, but that such
person as shall have such licence may transport according to such
licence the full number of clothes unwrought mentioned in the same
licence, over and above the number of such tenth clothes which they
shall be compelled to ship and carry over by force of this statute. And
be it further enacted by authority aforesaid, that from the last day of
February now next coming, no person shall ship or carry into the parts
beyond the seas, contrary to the form of any statute heretofore made now
remaining in force, any cloth commonly called Kentish cloth or Suffolk
cloth, made or to be made in the counties of Kent or Suffolk, unwrought
and undressed within this realm; that is to say, not rowed, barbed,
first coursed and shorn; upon pain to forfeit for every such cloth,
commonly called Kentish or Suffolk cloth, made or to be made in either
of the said counties, so to be shipped or transported contrary to the
form of this statute, forty shillings; and that no licence for
transporting of any cloth or clothes shall be construed or expounded to
extend to any such Kentish or Suffolk cloth, made or to be made in
either of the said counties to be from henceforth transported....


9. INCORPORATION OF A JOINT-STOCK MINING COMPANY [_Patent Rolls,_[308]
_10 Eliz., Part V_], 1568.

Elizabeth by the Grace of God, etc. To all unto whom these presents
shall come, greeting.

Whereas we ... have ... given and granted full power, license and
authority to Thomas Thurland, clerk, ... and to Daniel Houghsetter, a
German born ... to search ... for all manner of monies or ores of gold,
silver, copper, or quicksilver, within our counties of York, Lancaster,
Cumberland, Westmoreland, Cornwall, Devon, Gloucestershire and
Worcestershire, and within our principality of Wales, or in any of them,
and the same to try out, convert, and use to their most profit and
commodity....

And whereas our pleasure, intent, and meaning in our said Letters Patent
was that, for the better help and more commodity of the said Thomas
Thurland and Daniel Houghsetter and their several assignees, they ...
might ... grant ... parts and portions of the said licenses ... and
thereupon their several assignees have ... granted ... to ... William,
Earl of Pembroke, and Robert, Earl of Leicestershire, and to ... James,
Lord Mountjoy, and to Sir William Cecil, knight, our principal
secretary, and John Tamworth and John Dudley, esquires, Leonell Duchet,
citizen and alderman of London, Benedict Spynola, of London, merchant,
John Lover, William Winter, Anthony Duchett, of the County of
Westmoreland, gentlemen ... Daniel Ulstett, a German born [and ten
others], divers parts and portions of the licenses, powers, authorities,
privileges, benefits and immunities aforesaid;

By force whereof the said Thomas Thurland and Daniel Houghsetter ...
have travailed in the search, work and experiment of the mines and ores
aforesaid ... and have now brought the said work to very good effect,
whereby great benefit is like to come to us and this our Realm of
England, which also will the rather come to pass if the persons ...
having interest in the privileges aforesaid might by our grant be
incorporated and made a perpetual body politic; ...

Know ye, therefore, that we ... do give and grant to the aforenamed
William Earl of Pembroke [and the others as above] that they by the name
of Governor, Assistants, and Commonalty for the Mines Royal shall be
from henceforth one body politic in itself incorporate, and a perpetual
society of themselves both in deed and name....

And, further, we ... will and grant ... that they ... shall and may not
only admit into the said corporation and society such and as many
persons as by the statutes ... shall be prescribed ... so that every
such person ... shall ... have for the term of his life at the least the
benefit of a quarter of one four-and-twenty part of the licenses,
powers, authorities, privileges, benefits and communities aforesaid, ...
but also shall and may minister to every such person to be admitted an
oath tending to the due performing and keeping of the rules, statutes,
and ordinances in form aforesaid to be made ...

[Footnote 308: Printed by the Selden Society, Vol. 28, pp. 4-15.]


10. AN ACT FOR THE INCREASE OF TILLAGE [_13 Eliz. c. 13. Statutes of the
Realm, Vol. IV, Part I, pp. 547-48_], 1571.

For the better increase of tillage, and for maintenance and increase of
the navy and mariners of this realm, be it enacted, that from and after
the feast of the Nativity of St. John Baptist next coming, it shall be
lawful to all and every person and persons being subjects of the Queen's
Majesty, her heirs and successors, and inhabiting within her highness'
realms and dominions, only out of such ports and creeks where are or
shall be resident a customer or collector of subsidy of tonnage and
poundage, or one of their deputies, and not elsewhere, to load, carry or
transport any wheat, rye, barley, malt, peas or beans into any parts
beyond the seas, being in amity with this realm, and not prohibited by
any restraint or proclamation, only to sell as a merchandize in ships
carriers or other vessels bearing cross sails, whereof any English born
subjects inhabiting within her Highness' realms and dominions then shall
be the only owners, at all such times as the several prices thereof
shall be so reasonable and moderate in the several counties where any
such transportation shall be intended as that no prohibition shall be
made, either by the Queen's Majesty, her heirs or successors, by
proclamation to be made in the shiretown or in any port towns of the
county, or else by some order of the lord president and council in the
north, or the lord president and council in Wales, within their several
jurisdictions, or of the justices of assizes at their sessions in other
shires out of the jurisdiction of the said two presidents and councils,
or by the more part of the justices of the peace of the county at their
quarter sessions, in this manner following; that is, the said lord
president and councils of the shires within their jurisdiction, the
justices of assize at their several sessions in other shires out of the
said jurisdictions belonging to the said councils in the north and in
Wales, yearly shall, upon conference had with the inhabitants of the
country of the cheapness and dearth of any the said kinds of grain
within the countries within jurisdictions of the said councils, or in
the other countries within the limits of the said justices of assize, by
their discretion determine whether it shall be meet at anytime to permit
any grain to be carried out of the realm by any port within the said
several jurisdictions or limits, and so shall in writing under their
hands and seals cause and make a determination either for permission or
prohibition, and the same cause to be by the sheriff of the counties
published and affixed in as many accustomed market towns and ports
within the said shire as they shall think convenient, and in such manner
as the Queen's Majesty's proclamations are usually published and
affixed; which determination of the said presidents and councils in
their jurisdictions, and of the justices of assize in their limits,
shall continue in force for the time, place, and manner therein
expressed until the said presidents and councils shall otherwise order,
or until the justices of assize at their being in their said circuits in
every of the said counties shall alter or otherwise order the same,
except the same shall be otherwise in the mean time altered or
countermanded by the Queen's Majesty, her heirs or successors, or by
some order of the justices of the peace in the counties situated out of
the jurisdictions of the said two councils in their quarter sessions to
be holden in the meantime, or the greater part of them, shall find the
same determination of the justices of assize to be hurtful to the
county by means of dearth, or to be a great hindrance to tillage by
means of too much cheapness, and shall by their writings under their
hands and seals make any determination to the contrary, either for
permission or prohibition of carrying of any kind of grain out of the
realm; ...

... Provided nevertheless, that neither any of the said presidents and
councils, nor the said justices of assize nor the said justices of peace
above mentioned, shall publish any their determinations above mentioned
until the same shall be first by writing notified to the Queen's Majesty
or to her privy council, and by her Majesty or her privy council shall
be liked and allowed.

Provided also, that the Queen's Majesty, her heirs and successors, shall
have and receive by the customers and officers of her ports for the
custom or poundage of every quarter of wheat to be transported by force
of this statute, twelve pence, and of every quarter of any other grain,
eight pence, and of every quarter of wheat that shall be by any special
licence hereafter to be granted transported out of the realm, and not by
force of this statute, two shillings, and of every quarter of other
grain, sixteen pence, notwithstanding any manner of words that shall be
contained or inserted in any licences to the contrary; which said
several sums, so to be had or taken as custom or poundage, to be in full
satisfaction of all manner of custom or poundage for the said corn or
grain by any constitution, order, statute, law or custom heretofore
made, used, or taken for transporting of any such manner of corn or
grain.

Provided also and be it enacted by the authority of this present
parliament, that the Queen's Majesty, her heirs and successors, may at
all times by her writ of proclamation to be published generally in the
whole realm, or in the counties of this realm where any port towns are,
command that no person shall by virtue of this act transport or carry
out any manner of grain to any parts out of her dominions, either
generally out of any port in the realm, or particularly out of any
special ports to be in the same proclamation named; and that it shall
not be lawful for any person to carry out any such grain contrary to the
tenor of the same proclamation, upon such pains as by the laws of the
realm are and have been provided.


11. INSTRUCTIONS FOR AN ENGLISH FACTOR IN TURKEY [_Hakluyt. The
Principal Voyages of the English Nation_], 1582.

... And for that of many things that tend to the common benefit of the
State, some tend more and some less, I find that no one thing, after one
another, is greater than clothing, and the things incident to the same.
And understanding that you are of right good capacity, and become a
factor at Constantinople, and in other parts of Turkey, I find no man
fitter of all the English factors there than you. And therefore I am so
bold to put you in mind and to tell you wherein with some endeavour you
may chance to do your country much good, and give an infinite sort of
the poor people occasion to pray for you here throughout the realm. This
that I mean is in matter of cloth, etc.

1. First, you cannot deny but that this realm yieldeth the most fine
wool, the most soft, the most strong wool, the most durable in cloth,
and most apt of nature of all others to receive dye, and that no island
or any one kingdom so small doth yield so great abundance of the
same....

2. There is no commodity of this realm that may set so many poor
subjects on work, as this doth, that doth bring in so much treasure, and
so much enrich the merchant, and so much employ the navy of this realm,
as this commodity of our wool doth.

Ample and full vent of this noble and rich commodity is it that the
commonweal of this realm doth require.

Spain now aboundeth with wool, and the same are clothed. Turkey hath
wools, and so have divers provinces of Christendom and of heatheners,
and cloth is made of the same in divers places.

1. But if England have the most fine and the most excellent wools of the
world in all respects (as it cannot be denied but it hath). 2. If there
may be added to the same excellent artificial, and true making, and
excellent dyeing. 3. Then no doubt but that we shall have vent for our
cloths, though the rest of the world did abound much more with wool than
it doth....

But if foreign nations turn their wools, inferior to ours, into truer
and more excellent made cloth, and shall dye the same in truer, surer,
and more excellent and more delectable colours, then shall they sell
and make ample vent of their cloths, when the English cloth of better
wool shall rest unsold, to the spoil of the merchant, of the clothier,
and of the breeder of the wool, and to the turning to bag and wallet of
the infinite number of the poor people employed in clothing in several
degrees of labour here in England.

Which things weighed, I am to tell you what things I wish you in this
realm, and after in Turkey, to endeavour from time to time, as your
leisure may permit the same.

Before you out of the realm, that you learn:

1. To know wool, all kinds of cloth made in this realm, and all other
employments of wool, home or foreign.... All the deceits in clothmaking
... The faults in weaving. The faults in walking, rowing, burling, and
in racking the cloth above measure upon the tenters....

2. Then to learn of the dyers to discern all kinds of colours, as which
be good and sure, and which will not hold; which be fair, and which
not....

3. Then to take the names of all the materials and substances used in
this city or in the realm in dyeing of cloth or silk....

4. These things superficially learned in the realm before you go, you
are fitter in foreign parts to serve your country....

What you shall do in Turkey, besides the business of your factorship.

1. Forasmuch as it is reported that the woollen cloths dyed in Turkey be
most excellently dyed, you shall send home unto this realm certain ...
pieces of shred, to be brought to the Dyers' Hall, there to be shewed,
partly to remove out of their heads the too great opinion they have
conceived of their own cunning, and partly to move them for shame to
endeavour to learn more knowledge, to the honour of their country of
England and to the universal benefit of the realm.

2. You shall devise to amend the dyeing of England, by carrying hence an
apt young man brought up in the art, or by bringing one or other from
thence of skill, or rather to devise to bring one for silks, and another
for wool and for woollen cloth....

3. Then to learn to know all the materials and substances that the Turks
use in dyeing, be they of herbs, simple or compound, be they plants,
barks, wood, berries, seeds, grains, or mineral matter....

5. And in any wise, if anile that coloureth blue be a natural commodity
of those parts, and if it be compounded of an herb, to send the same
into this realm by seed, or by root in barrel of earth, with all the
whole order of sowing, setting, planting, replanting, and with the
compounding of the same, that it may become a natural commodity in this
realm, as woad is, to this end, that the high price of foreign woad
(which devoureth yearly great treasure) may be brought down....

8. The wools being natural, and excellent colours for dyeing by this
means here also natural, in all the art of clothing then we want but one
only special thing. For in this so temperate a climate our people may
labour the year throughout ... and the people of this realm by the great
and blessed abundance of victual are cheaply fed, and therefore may
afford their labour cheap. And where the clothiers in Flanders, by the
flatness of their rivers, cannot make water-mills for their cloths, but
are forced to dress and thicken all their cloths by the foot and by the
labour of men, whereby their cloths are raised to an higher price, we in
England have in all shires store of mills upon falling rivers.... Then
we have also, for scouring our cloths, earths and clays.... Then also
have we some reasonable store of alum and copperas here, made for
dyeing.... Then we have many good waters apt for dyeing, and people to
spin and to do the rest of all the labours we want not. So as there
wanteth, if colours might be brought in and made natural, but only oil;
the want whereof if any man could devise to supply at the full with
anything that might become natural in this realm, he, whatsoever he were
that could bring it about, might deserve immortal fame in this our
commonwealth....

10. And if you shall find that they make any cloth of any kind not made
in this realm, that is there of great use, then to bring of the same
into this realm some "mowsters,"[309] that our people may fall into the
trade, and prepare the same for Turkey. For the more kinds of cloth we
can devise to make, the more ample vent of our commodity we shall have,
and the more sale of the labour of our poor subjects that else for lack
of labour become idle and burdenous to the commonweal, and hurtful to
many. And in England we are in our clothing trade to frame ourselves
according to the desires of foreign nations, be it that they desire
thick or thin, broad or narrow, long or short, white or black.

11. But with this proviso always, that our cloth pass out with as much
labour of our people as may be, wherein great consideration ought to be
had. For (if vent might so admit), as it were the greatest madness in
the world for us to vent our wool not clothed, so were it madness to
vent our wool in part or on the whole turned into broad cloth, if we
might vent the same in kersies; for there is a great difference to our
people between the clothing of a sack of wool in the one and the like
sack of wool in the other, of which I wish the merchant of England to
have a great care as he may for the universal benefit of the poor; and
the turning of a sack of wool into bonnets is better than both, etc. And
also not to carry out of the realm any cloth white, but dyed, if it may
be, that the subjects of this realm may take as much benefit as is
possible, and rather to seek the vent of the cloths dyed with the
natural colours of England than such as be dyed with foreign colours.

Thus giving you occasion, by way of a little remembrance, to have desire
to do your country good, you shall, if you have any inclination to such
good, do more good to the poor ready to starve for relief than ever any
subject did in this realm by building of almshouses, and by giving of
lands and goods to the relief of the poor. Thus may you help to drive
idleness, the mother of most mischief, out of the realm, and win you
perpetual fame, and the prayer of the poor, which is more worth than all
the gold of Peru and of all the West Indies.

[Footnote 309: _i.e._ Samples.]


12. THE ADVANTAGES OF COLONIES [_A True Report of the late Discoveries
and Possession Taken in the Right of the Crown of England of the
Newfound Lands by ... Sir Humfrey Gilbert_[310]; _Hakluyt's Principal
Voyages of the English Nation_], 1583.

... The fourth chapter sheweth how that the trade, traffic, and planting
in these countries is likely to prove very profitable to the whole realm
in general.

Now to show how the same is likely to prove very profitable and
beneficial generally to the whole realm. It is very certain that the
greatest jewel of this realm, and the chiefest strength and force of the
same, for defence or offence in martial matter and manner, is the
multitude of ships, masters, and mariners ready to assist the most
stately and royal navy of her Majesty, which by reason of this voyage
shall have both increase and maintenance. And it is well known that in
sundry places of this realm ships have been built and set forth of late
days for the trade of fishing only; yet, notwithstanding, the fish which
is taken and brought into England by the English navy of fishermen will
not suffice for the expense of this realm four months, if there were
none else brought of strangers. And the chiefest cause why our English
men do not go so far westerly as the especial fishing places do lie,
both for plenty and greatness of fish, is for that they have no succour
and known safe harbour in those parts. But if our nation were once
planted there or thereabouts, whereas they now fish but for two months
in the year, they might then fish for so long as pleased themselves ...
which being brought to pass shall increase the number of our ships and
mariners.

Moreover, it is well known that all savages ... will take marvellous
delight in any garment, be it never so simple, as a shirt, a blue,
yellow, red, or green cotton cassock, a cap, or such like, and will take
incredible pains for such a trifle, ... which being so, what vent for
our English cloths will thereby ensue, and how great benefit to all such
persons and artificers, whose names are quoted in the margin, I leave to
such as are discreet....

To what end need I endeavour myself by arguments to prove that by this
voyage our navy and navigation shall be enlarged, when as there needeth
none other reason than the manifest and late example of the near
neighbours to this realm, the Kings of Spain and Portugal, who, since
the first discovery of the Indies, have not only mightily enlarged their
dominions, greatly enriched themselves and their subjects, but have
also, by just account, trebled the number of their ships, masters and
mariners, a matter of no small moment and importance?

Besides this, it will prove a general benefit unto our country, that,
through this occasion, not only a great number of men which do now live
idly at home, and are burdenous, chargeable, and unprofitable to this
realm, shall hereby be set on work, but also children of twelve or
fourteen years of age, or under, may be kept from idleness, in making of
a thousand kinds of trifling things, which will be good merchandise for
that country. And, moreover, our idle women (which the realm may well
spare) shall also be employed on plucking, drying, and sorting of
feathers, in pulling, beating, and working of hemp, and in gathering of
cotton, and divers things right necessary for dyeing. All which things
are to be found in those countries most plentifully. And the men may
employ themselves in dragging for pearl, working for mines, and in
matters of husbandry, and likewise in hunting the whale for trane, and
making casks to put the same in, besides in fishing for cod, salmon and
herring, drying, salting and barrelling the same, and felling of trees,
hewing and sawing of them, and such like work, meet for those persons
that are no men of art or science.

Many other things may be found to the great relief and good employment
of no small number of the natural subjects of this realm, which do now
live here idly, to the common annoy of the whole State. Neither may I
here omit the great hope and likelihood of a passage beyond the Grand
Bay into the South Seas, confirmed by sundry authors to be found leading
to Cataia, the Moluccas and Spiceries, whereby may ensue as general a
benefit to the realm, or greater than yet hath been spoken of, without
either such charges or other inconveniences, as, by the tedious tract of
time and peril, which the ordinary passage to those parts at this day
doth minister....

I must now, according to my promise, show forth some probable reasons
that the adventurers in this journey are to take particular profit by
the same. It is, therefore, convenient that I do divide the adventurers
into two sorts, the noblemen and gentlemen by themselves, and the
merchants by themselves. For, as I do hear, it is meant that there shall
be one society of the noblemen and gentlemen, and another society of the
merchants; and yet not so divided, but that each society may freely and
frankly trade and traffic one with the other.

And first to bend my speech to the noblemen and gentlemen, who do
chiefly seek a temperate climate, wholesome air, fertile soil, and a
strong place by nature whereupon they may fortify, and there either
plant themselves or such other persons as they shall think good to send
to be lords of that place and country:--To them I say that all these
things are very easy to be found within the degrees of 30 and 60
aforesaid, either by south or north, both in the continent and in
islands thereunto adjoining, at their choice ... and in the whole tract
of that land, by the description of as many as have been there, great
plenty of mineral matter of all sorts, and in very many places both
stones of price, pearl and chrystal, and great store of beasts, birds,
and fowls, both for pleasure and necessary use of man are to be
found....

And now for the better contemplation and satisfaction of such
worshipful, honest-minded and well-disposed merchants as have a desire
to the furtherance of every good and commendable action, I will first
say unto them, as I have done before to the noblemen and gentlemen, that
within the degrees aforesaid is doubtless to be found the most wholesome
and best temperature of air, fertility of soil, and every other
commodity or merchandise, for the which, with no small peril, we do
travel into Barbary, Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Muscovy and
Eastland, and yet, to the end my argument shall not altogether stand
upon likelihoods and presumptions, I say that such persons as have
discovered and travelled those parts do testify that they have found in
those countries all these things following, namely:--[a list of beasts,
birds, fishes, trees, minerals, etc.] ...

Now for the trial hereof, considering that in the articles of the
society of the adventurers in this voyage there is provision made that
no adventurer shall be bound to any further charge than his first
adventure, and notwithstanding keep still to himself, his children, his
apprentices and servants, his and their freedom for trade and traffic,
which is a privilege that adventurers in other voyages have not; and in
the said articles it is likewise provided that none other than such as
have adventured in the first voyage, or shall become adventurers in this
supply, at any time hereafter are to be admitted in the said society,
but as redemptionaries, which will be very chargeable; therefore,
generally, I say unto all such, according to the old proverb. "Nothing
venture, nothing have" ...

The sixth chapter sheweth that the traffic and planting in those
countries shall be unto the savages themselves very beneficial and
gainful....

... First and chiefly, in respect of the most happy and gladsome tidings
of the most glorious gospel of our Saviour Jesus Christ, whereby they
may be brought from falsehood to truth, from darkness to light, from the
highway of death to the path of life, from superstitious idolatry to
sincere Christianity, from the devil to Christ, from hell to heaven. And
if in respect of all the commodities they can yield us (were they many
more) that they should but receive but this only benefit of
Christianity, they were more than fully recompensed.

But hereunto it may be objected that the Gospel must be freely preached,
for such was the example of the apostles.... Yet for answer we may say
with St. Paul: If we have sown unto you heavenly things, do you think it
much that we should reap your carnal things? And withal, The workman is
worthy of his hire. These heavenly tidings which those labourers our
countrymen (as messengers of God's great goodness and mercy) will
voluntarily present unto them, do far exceed their earthly riches....

[Footnote 310: Gilbert was drowned in the "Squirrel" on September 9th,
1583. The above document purports to have been written after the return
of the "Golden Hind," but before the loss of the "Squirrel" was
certainly known.]


13. LORD BURGHLEY TO SIR CHRISTOPHER HATTON ON THE STATE OF TRADE [_Sir
H. Nicholas, Memoirs of Sir Christopher Hatton, pp. 470-2_], 1587.

TO THE LORD CHANCELLOR.

My Lord,

I am sorry that my pains are such as I cannot attend on you to-day in
the Star Chamber, having yesterday, by more zeal of service in the
Exchequer Chamber than of regard to my harms, so weakened and pained my
leg, as I cannot stir it out of my bed; but this my declaration of my
state is to no purpose to occupy your Lordship withal. This great matter
of the lack of vent, not only of clothes, which presently is the
greatest, but of all other English commodities which are restrained from
Spain, Portugal, Barbary, France, Flanders, Hamburgh, and the States,
cannot but in process of time work a great change and dangerous issue to
the people of the realm, who, heretofore, in time of outward peace,
lived thereby, and without it must either perish for want, or fall into
violence to feed and fill their lewd appetites with open spoils of
others, which is the fruit of rebellion; but it is in vain to remember
this to your Lordship, that is so notorious as there need no repetition
thereof. The evil being seen and like daily to increase beyond all good
remedies, it is our duties that are Councillors to think of some
remedies in time, before the same become remediless; and briefly the
best means of remedy must follow the consideration of the causes of this
evil, and so _contrariis contraria curare_. The original cause is
apparently the contentions and enmities betwixt the King of Spain and
his countries, and her Majesty and her countries. The reduction hereof
to amity betwixt the Princes, and to open traffic according to the
ancient treaties of intercourse, would be the sovereign remedy; but this
may be wished sooner than speedily effectuated. But yet, seeing there is
a signification notified of the good inclination of both the Princes,
and a great necessity to press them both thereto for the suagement of
their people, it were pity any course should be taken either to hinder
this or not to hasten it, which surely in the Low Countries would be
done, with whatsoever a reasonable cost may be, to keep the enemy from
victuals, and to withstand his enterprises against our friends until
this next harvest; and by this proceeding against him, there is no doubt
but he will yield to all reasonable conditions meet both for her Majesty
and her protected friends; otherwise, if the good fortune of our friends
do decay, and the enemy recover that which he now lacketh, that is store
of victuals, he will either underhand make peace with our friends, whom
he shall find both weak and timorous, and leave her Majesty in danger
for recovery of all that she hath spent, and in greater charges to
maintain her two cautionary towns against the whole Low Countries than
two Boulognes were, or else he will, being puffed with pride, make a
very Spanish conquest of Holland and Zealand,--a matter terrible to be
thought of, but most terrible to be felt. But to insist upon this remedy
is as yet in vain, and therefore such other poor helps are to be thought
of as may somewhat mitigate the accidents present, and stay the increase
thereof, whereof when I do bethink myself, I find no one simple remedy,
but rather compounded of divers simples, and to say truly they are but
simple remedies, until peace may ensue, which is the sovereign sole
medicine of all. To have vent increase, there must be more buyers and
shippers than there are, and seeing our merchants say that they cannot
have sales sufficient,

1. It were good that the Steelyard men were licensed to trade as they
were wont to do, with condition upon good bonds that our merchants
adventurers shall have their former liberties in Hamburgh;

2. These Steelyard merchants must also have a dispensation to carry a
competent number of unwrought cloths that are coarse, which are the
cloths whereof the great stay is in the Realm.

3. Beside this, the merchant strangers might have a like dispensation
for the buying and shipping of a competent number of like white coarse
cloths.

4. And if her Majesty, for some reasonable time, would abate only 2s.
upon a cloth, I think there would grow no loss to her Majesty, having
respect to the multitude of the cloths that should be carried, whereas
now the strangers carry few, but upon licences, for which her Majesty
hath no strangers' customs, but English.

5. The strangers also must have liberty to buy in Blackwell Hall, or
else there may be a staple set up in Westminster, out of the liberties
of the City of London, which, rather than London would suffer, I think
they will grant liberty to strangers in respect to the hallage money
which they shall lease. Notwithstanding all these shows of remedies, I
could wish that our merchants adventurers were made acquainted herewith,
and to be warned, that if they shall not amend the prices to clothiers
for their coarse cloths, whereby the clothiers may be reasonably
apparent gainers, and that to be put in practice this next week, that
then her Majesty will give authority to put the former helps in
practice. Thus, my good Lord, because I understand you are to go to the
Court this afternoon, I have thought good to scribble, as I do (lying in
pain) these few cogitations, submitting them to a more mature
disquisition.

  Your Lordship's most assured,

  W. BURGHLEY.


14. A LIST OF PATENTS AND MONOPOLIES [_Lodge. Illustrations of British
History, Vol. III, pp.. 159,[311] ff._]

33. Eliz.--A grant to Reynold Hopton only, and no other, to make
flasks, touch-boxes, powder-boxes, and bullet-boxes, for 15 years.

34 Eliz.--A grant to Simon Farmer and John Craford only, and no other,
to transport list shreds of woollen cloth, and all manner of horns, for
21 years.

35 Eliz.--A grant to Bryan Annesley, solely, and no other, to buy and
provide steel beyond sea and sell the same within this realm for 21
years.

36 Eliz.--A grant to Robert Alexander only, and no other, to buy and
bring in anise-seeds, sumach, etc., for 21 years.

39 Eliz.--A grant to John Spillman only, and no other, to buy linen
rags, and to make paper.

40 Eliz.--A grant to Ede Schetts, and his assignees only, and no other,
to buy and transport ashes and old shoes for 7 years.

36 Eliz.--A grant to [_blank_] only, and no other, to provide and bring
in all Spanish wools for making of felt hats, for 20 years.

34 Eliz.--A grant that Sir Jerome Bowes, and no other, shall make
glasses for 12 years.

42 Eliz.--A grant made to Harding and others only, concerning saltpeter.

41 Eliz.--A grant that Brigham and Wimmes shall only have the
pre-emption of tin.

Other Monopolies for one man only and no other--

To register all writings and assurances between merchants, called
policies.

To make spangles.

To print the Psalms of David.

To print Cornelius Tacitus.

To sow woad in certain numbers of shires.

To print grammars, primers, and other school books.

To print the law.

To print all manner of songs in parts.

To make mathematical instruments.

To plainish and hollow silver vessels.

That one man and no other shall make writs of _subpoena_ in Chancery,
Sir Thomas George.

To write all writs of supplication and _supersedeas_ for the peace and
good behaviour, and all pardons of outlawry, George Carew.

To draw leases in possession made by the King, Sir Edward Stafford.

To engross all leases by the great seal.

Licenses and Dispensations to one man only, of the Penalty of Penal
Laws, and Power given to license others--

[18] Eliz.--A license to Sir Edward Dyer, to pardon and dispense with
tanning of leather, contrary to the statute of 5 Eliz., and to license
any man to be a tanner.

30 Eliz.--A patent to Sir Walter Raleigh, to make licenses for keeping
of taverns and retailing of wines throughout England.

31 Eliz.--The grant to John Ashley and Thomas Windebank, to have all
forfeitures and penalties for burning of timber trees to make iron,
contrary to the statute of 1 Eliz.

36 Eliz.--A license to Roger Bineon, and others, to take the whole
forfeiture of the statute of 5th and 6th of Edw. VI, for pulling down
gig-mills.

37 Eliz.--A license to William Smith only, and no others, to take the
benefit of the statute of 5 Eliz. for gashing of hides, and barking of
trees.

38 Eliz.--A license to Thomas Cornwallis only, and no other, to make
grants and licenses for keeping of gaming-houses, and using of unlawful
games, contrary to the statute of 33 Henry VIII.

39 Eliz.--A license to William Carre, for nine years, to authorize and
license any person to brew beer to be transported beyond sea.

40 Eliz.--A license to Richard Coningsby, to give license for buying of
tin throughout England.

41 Eliz.--A license to Richard Carnithen only, to bring in Irish yarn
for seven years.

_Impositions._

41 Eliz.--A grant to Bevis Bulmer to have an imposition of sea-coal,
paying £6,200 rent for 21 years.

36 Eliz.--A grant made to John Parker, Esq., to have twelve-pence for
filing of every bill in Chancery in respect whereof the subject is to be
discharged of payment of anything of search.

41 Eliz.--A license to trade the Levant Seas with currants only, paying
£4,000 per annum.

Particular licenses to transport certain numbers of pelts of sheep-skins
and lambskins.

Certain numbers of woollen cloths.

Certain numbers of dickers of calf-skins.

_New Inventions._

Only and no other, so as they were never used in England before.

To inn and drain [_blank_] grounds.

To take water fowl.

To make devices of safe-keeping of corn.

To make a device for soldiers to carry necessary provisions.

[Footnote 311: Quoted, _English Patents of Monopoly_, Appendix c, W.H.
Price, 1603.]


15. INSTRUCTIONS TOUCHING THE BILL FOR FREE TRADE [_Journals of the
House of Commons, Vol. I, p. 218_], 1604.

The Committees from the House of the Commons sat five whole afternoons
upon these Bills; there was a great concourse of clothiers and
merchants, of all parts of the realm, and especially of London; who were
so divided, as that all the clothiers, and, in effect, all the merchants
of England, complained grievously of the engrossing and restraint of
trade by the rich merchants of London, as being to the undoing, or great
hindrance, of all the rest; and of London merchants, three parts joined
in the same complaint against a fourth part; and of that fourth part,
some standing stiffly for their own company, yet repined at other
companies. Divers writings and informations were exhibited on both
parts; learned Counsel was heard for the Bill, and divers of the
principal Aldermen of London against it; all reasons exactly weighed and
examined; the Bill, together with the reasons on both sides, was
returned and reported by the Committees to the House; where, at the
third reading, it was three several days debated, and in the end passed
with great consent and applause of the House (as being for the exceeding
benefit of all the land) scarce forty voices dissenting from it.

The most weighty reasons for the enlargement of trade were these:

_Natural Right._--All free subjects are born inheritable, as to their
land, so also to the free exercise of their industry in those trades,
whereto they apply themselves and whereby they are to live. Merchandize
being the chief and richest of all other, and of greater extent and
importance than all the rest, it is against the natural right and
liberty of the subjects of England to restrain it into the hands of some
few, as now it is; for although there may be now some five or six
thousand persons, counting children and prentices, free of the several
Companies of the Merchants, in the whole; yet apparent it is, that the
Governors of these Companies, by their monopolizing orders, have so
handled the matter, as that the mass of the whole trade of all the realm
is in the hands of some two hundred persons at the most, the rest
serving for a shew only, and reaping small benefit.

_Judgement of Parliament._--The law stands for it; and a law made 12th
of Henry the Seventh, never repealed by Parliament, only restrained
since by charters, unduly, or by untrue suggestions, procured (by which
means all other monopolies have had their original) and the first of
those charters since the making of that statute (which was purchased in
the end of the reign of Henry the Seventh, at what time Empson and
Dudley were instruments of so much wronging and oppressing the people)
yet doth in no wise restrain this liberty of free trade, but expressly
allow it (with a reverence unto that very act in the 12th of this reign)
and so continued till the reign of Queen Elizabeth.

_Examples of Nations._--The example of all other nations generally in
the world, who avoid in themselves, and hate in us, this monopolizing
way of traffic; for it cannot be otherwise counted than a monopoly, when
so large a commodity is restrained into the hands of so few in
proportion, to the prejudice of all other who by law and natural right
might have interest therein. And whereas some allege that there are like
Companies in other countries, as of the East Indies in Lesbone, the
House of Contraction there, the Fontego at Venice, the Travesana at
Noremberg, these allegations are either untrue or unproper. There are
places of assembly for merchants, and to consult for good orders in all
other countries, but without restraint of trading from any man; and how
traffic, by this freedom, doth flourish in other countries, and
principally in the Low Countries, far more than in ours, is apparent to
all the world.

_Wealth._--The increase of the wealth generally of all the land by the
ready vent of all the commodities to the merchants at higher rate; for
where many buyers are, ware grows dearer; and they that buy dear at
home, must sell dear abroad: this also will make our people more
industrious.

_Equal Distribution._--The more equal distribution of the wealth of the
land, which is a great stability and strength to the realm, even as the
equal distributing of the nourishment in a man's body; the contrary
whereof is inconvenient in all estates, and oftentimes breaks out into
mischief, when too much fullness doth puff up some by presumption, and
too much emptiness leaves the rest in perpetual discontent, the mother
of desire of innovations and troubles: and this is the proper fruit of
monopolies. Example may be in London, and the rest of the realm: The
custom and impost of London come to a hundred and ten thousand pound a
year, and of the rest of the whole realm but to seventeen thousand
pound.

_Strength._--The increase of shipping, and especially of marine