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Title: English Industries of the Middle Ages - Being an Introduction to the Industrial History of Medieval England
Author: Salzmann, Louis Francis
Language: English
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Being an Introduction to the Industrial History
of Medieval England






The title of this book indicates at once its aim and its limitations.
It makes no pretence to be a complete history of the early industrial
life of England, but at the same time it does claim to be an
introduction to the study of that subject. It is my hope, and indeed
my belief, that from it the general reader, equipped with interest in
the history of his country rather than with technical knowledge, will
obtain something more than a bare outline of industrial conditions in
pre-Elizabethan days. The student who is anxious to go more deeply
into the subjects here treated may use this book as a road map and the
footnotes as finger-posts to guide him to the heights of completer

From the nature of my subject it was inevitable that the book should
be full of technicalities, figures, and statistics, but it has been my
endeavour to render the technicalities intelligible, and to prevent
the significance of the statistics being obscured by an excess of
detail. The scheme which I have adopted is to treat the leading
medieval industries one by one, showing as far as possible their chief
centres, their chronological development, the conditions and the
methods of working. With the disposal of the finished products through
intermediaries, merchants, or shopkeepers, I have not concerned myself,
deeming such matters rather to belong to the realms of trade and
commerce than of industry; and for this same reason, and also because
it has been dealt with by other writers, I have not dealt with the
great source of England's wealth—wool. Agriculture, also, and fishing I
have excluded from my definition of industry. A more culpable omission,
which I think calls for a word of explanation, is shown in the case
of building. This, however, is not omitted by an oversight, nor yet
through any desire to save myself trouble. I had collected a great
mass of material for an intended section on the Building Industry,
but after careful consideration I came to the conclusion that the
material available was so exceedingly technical, and the obscurity of
the details so greatly in excess of their value when elucidated, as to
render such a section rather a weariness and a stumbling-block to the
student than a help. The subjects treated in the several sections are
thoroughly representative, if not completely exhaustive, of English
industrial life, and a general survey of the subject is contained in
my last chapter, where I have outlined as broadly as possible the
general principles that governed the Control of Industry—the typical
regulations made by, or for, the craftsmen in the interest of the
employer, the workman, or the consumer. This last section might, of
course, easily have been extended to cover more pages than this whole
volume, but it is questionable whether multiplicity of detail tends to
ease of assimilation. A single typical instance of a prevalent custom
or regulation is as significant as a list of a dozen local variations,
and far easier to remember. A rule is more easily remembered by
one example than by a score, and with such a wealth of material as
exists the risk of obscurity is greater from amplification than from

As to defining what is meant by the medieval period, it is not easy to
lay down any hard and fast rule, for the change from old methods or
conditions to new, which practically constitutes the division between
the medieval and the modern periods, occurred at a different date in
each industry. The crucial point in gunfounding was the invention of
solid boring in the time of Henry VIII.; in the cloth industry it was
the introduction of the 'new draperies' by Protestant refugees in
the reign of Elizabeth; for iron mining it was the adoption of pit
coal for smelting in the seventeenth century; for coal mining, the
application of steam power to solve the problems of drainage at great
depths early in the eighteenth century. Yet, taking one thing with
another, the sixteenth century may be considered to be the period of
transition. The rise of the capitalist and the monopolist, the social
revolution of the Reformation, with the abolition of the monastic
houses and the beginnings of the Poor-Law system constituted a new
era for the working classes even when unaccompanied by any startling
change in methods or mechanical media. Moreover, from the middle of
the sixteenth century documents and records relating to industrial
matters become more numerous and more accessible, and this is therefore
the usual starting-point for those who write upon these subjects. For
these reasons my accounts of the various selected industries will be
found to end at such dates within the sixteenth century as have seemed
convenient, though I have not slavishly refrained from taking out of
the seventeenth century occasional details applicable to the earlier

Such, then, are the lines upon which I have built my book. If any
critic considers that the subject should have been dealt with on
another plan, he is at liberty to prove his contention by so treating
it himself.

As to the sources from which my information is taken: I believe
that every statement will be found to be buttressed by at least
one reference, and I may add that the reference is invariably to
the actual source from which I obtained my information. Of printed
sources much the most valuable have been the series of articles on
local industries printed in the _Victoria County Histories_, those
on mining and kindred subjects by Mr. C. H. Vellacott being of
exceptional importance. In very few cases have I found any published
history of any industry dealing at all fully with the early period:
the one conspicuous exception was Mr. G. Randall Lewis's book on _The
Stannaries_, second to which may be put Mr. Galloway's _Annals of Coal
Mining_. The various volumes of municipal records published by, or with
the consent of, the public-spirited authorities of some of our ancient
boroughs, notably those of Norwich, Bristol, Coventry, and Leicester,
have been of great value to me, as have Mr. Riley's _Memorials of
London_ and his editions of the _Liber Albus_ and _Liber Custumarum_.
To such other printed works as I have drawn upon, acknowledgment is
made in the footnotes, but so far as possible I have made use of
unpublished manuscript material at the British Museum and still more at
the Record Office. Needless to say, I collected far more material than
it was possible to use, and I can only hope that my selection has been
wise, as it certainly was careful, and that I have not overlooked or
omitted any evidence of essential importance. It had originally been my
intention to compile a series of transcripts of industrial records on
lines similar to the _Documents relatifs à l'Industrie_ of M. Fagniez,
but the enormous mass of material available for such a work, coupled
with the fact that in England such original research has to be carried
out at the sole expense of the unfortunate researcher, put an end to
the project, and deprived this work of what would have been a valuable,
if formidable, companion volume.




II.   "    IRON      20

III.  "    LEAD AND SILVER      38

IV.   "    TIN      62








INDEX      241



Coal is so intimately connected with all that is essentially
modern—machinery, steam, and the black pall that overhangs our great
towns and manufacturing districts—that it comes almost as a surprise
to find it in use in Britain at the beginning of the Christian era.
Yet excavation has proved beyond all doubt that coal was used by the
Romans, ashes and stores of the unburnt mineral being found all along
the Wall, at Lanchester and Ebchester in Durham,[1] at Wroxeter[2]
in Shropshire and elsewhere. For the most part it appears to have
been used for working iron, but it was possibly also used for heating
hypocausts, and there seems good reason to believe that it formed the
fuel of the sacred fire in the temple of Minerva at Bath, as Solinus,
writing about the end of the third century, comments on the 'stony
balls' which were left as ashes by this sacred fire.[3] That such coal
as was used by the Romans was obtained from outcrops, where the seams
came to the surface, is more than probable. There appears to be no
certain evidence of any regular mining at this period.

With the departure of the Romans from Britain coal went out of use, and
no trace of its employment can be found prior to the Norman Conquest,
or indeed for more than a century after that date. It was not until
quite the end of the twelfth century that coal was rediscovered,
and the history of its use in England may be said for all practical
purposes to begin with the reign of Henry III. (1216). In the 'Boldon
Book'[4] survey of the see of Durham, compiled in 1183, there are
several references to smiths who were bound to make ploughshares
and to 'find the coal' therefor, but unfortunately the Latin word
_invenire_ bears the same double meaning as its English equivalent 'to
find,' and may imply either discovery or simple provision. In view of
the fact that the word used for coal (_carbonem_) in this passage is
unqualified, and that _carbo_, as also the English 'cole,' practically
always implies charcoal, it would be unsafe to conclude that mineral
coal is here referred to. The latter is almost invariably given a
distinguishing adjective, appearing as earth coal, subterranean coal,
stone coal, quarry coal, etc., but far most frequently as 'sea coal.'
The origin of this term may perhaps be indicated by a passage in a
sixteenth-century account of the salt works in the county of Durham:[5]
'As the tide comes in it bringeth a small wash sea coal which is
employed to the making of salt and the fuel of the poor fisher towns
adjoining.' It is most probable that the first coal used was that thus
washed up by the sea and such as could be quarried from the face of
the cliffs where the seams were exposed by the action of the waves.
The term was next applied, for convenience, to similar coal obtained
inland, and as an export trade grew up it acquired the secondary
significance of sea-borne coal.

No references to purchases of sea coal occur in the Pipe Rolls of Henry
II., nor, so far as I am aware, in those of Richard I. and John, but it
would seem that its existence was known before the end of the twelfth
century, as Alexander Neckam in his treatise, _De Naturis Rerum_,[6]
has a curious and puzzling section, '_De Carbone_,' at the beginning
of his discourse on minerals, parts of which seem applicable to sea
coal, though other parts appear to refer to charcoal. So far as can be
gathered, he considered sea coal to be charcoal found in the earth;
he comments on the extreme durability of coal and its resistance to
the effects of wet and the lapse of time, and makes the interesting
statement that when men were setting up boundary stones they dug in
below them a quantity of coal, and that in the event of a dispute as
to the position of the stone in later years the presence of this coal
was the determining factor. Whether there is any corroborative evidence
of this alleged custom I have not been able to ascertain, but it is
at least a proof that mineral coal was known, though evidently not
extensively used for fuel at this period. Coal was apparently worked
in Scotland about 1200,[7] and it would seem that about a quarter of a
century later it was being imported into London, as a mention of Sea
Coal Lane, just outside the walls of the city, near Ludgate, occurs in
1228.[8] As property in this lane belonged to William 'de Plessetis,'
it is probable that the coal was brought from Plessey, near Blyth, in
which neighbourhood the monks of Newminster were given the right to
take coal along the shore about 1236.[9] The monks also obtained leave
from Nicholas de Aketon about the same time to take sea coals in his
wood of Middlewood for use at their forge of Stretton, near Alnwick.
It may be remarked that at this time, and for the greater part of the
next three centuries, the use of coal was restricted to iron-working
and lime-burning, the absence of chimneys rendering it unsuitable for
fuel in ordinary living rooms. So particularly was it associated with
lime-burning that we find Sea Coal Lane also known as Lime-burners
Lane, and references in building accounts to purchases of sea coal for
the burning of lime are innumerable.

It is in 1243 that we get our first dated reference to an actual
coal working. In that year Ralf, son of Roger Wlger, was recorded
to have been drowned 'in a delf of sea coals' (_in fossato carbonum
maris_).[10] The use of the word _fossatum_ is interesting, as clearly
indicating an 'open cast working,' that is to say, a comparatively
shallow trench carried along the seam where it comes close to the
surface, a step intermediate between the mere quarrying of outcrop
and the sinking of regular pits. An indication of the spread of coal
mining is to be found in one of the articles of inquiry for the Forest
Assize of 1244, which relates to 'sea coal found within the forest,
and whether any one has taken money for the digging of the same.'[11]
It is probable that special reference was intended to the Forest of
Dean, coal being worked about this time at Blakeney, Stainton, and
Abinghall; from the last named place a penny on every horse-load of
coal was paid to the Constable of St. Briavels, as warden of the
Forest.[12] By 1255 the issues of the Forest of Dean included payments
for digging sea coals, and customs on all sea coal brought down the
Severn.[13] Some of this latter may have been quarried in Shropshire,
as about 1260 Walter de Clifford licensed Sir John de Halston to dig
for coals in the forest of Clee,[14] and there are other indications of
the early exploitation of the Shropshire coal-field. The Midland field
of Derbyshire and Notts was also working, coal being got in Duffield
Frith in 1257,[15] the year in which Queen Eleanor was driven from
Nottingham Castle by the unpleasant fumes of the sea coal used in the
busy town below,[16] a singularly early instance of the smoke nuisance
which we are apt to consider a modern evil. Half a century later, in
1307, the growing use of coal by lime-burners in London became so
great a nuisance that its use was rigorously prohibited, but whether
successfully may be questioned.[17]

By the end of the thirteenth century it would seem that practically
all the English coal-fields were being worked to some extent. In
Northumberland so numerous were the diggings round Newcastle that
it was dangerous to approach the town in the dark, and the monks of
Tynemouth also were making good use of their mineral wealth;[18] in
Yorkshire coal was being got at Shippen at least as early as 1262,[19]
and in Warwickshire and at Chilvers Coton in 1275.[20] The small
Somerset field near Stratton on Fosse and the Staffordshire coal
measures may be possible exceptions, but in the latter county coal was
dug at Bradley in 1315 and at Amblecote during the reign of Edward
III.[21] The diggings were still for the most part open-cast works, but
pits were beginning to come in. These 'bell pits,' of which numbers
remained until recently in the neighbourhood of Leeds,[22] at Oldham in
Lancashire,[23] and elsewhere, were narrow shafts sunk down to the coal
and then enlarged at the bottom, and widened as far as was safe—and
sometimes farther, if we may judge from a number of instances in
Derbyshire in which miners were killed by the fall of their pits.[24]
When as much coal as could safely be removed had been obtained, the
pit was abandoned and a fresh pit sunk as near to it as possible. As a
rule the old pit had to be filled up, and at Nuneaton we find this very
properly enforced by the bailiff in 1343,[25] and at later dates. Open
coal delfs were a source of considerable danger to men and animals,
especially when water had accumulated in them, and a number of cattle
were drowned at Morley in Derbyshire in 1372,[26] while it was probably
in an abandoned working at Wingerworth that a beggar woman, Maud
Webster, was killed in 1313 by a mass of soil falling on her as she
was picking up coal.[27] From the pits the coal was raised in corves,
or large baskets, and as early as 1291 we have a case of a man being
killed at Denby in a 'colpyt' by one of these loaded corves falling
upon his head.[28]

A case of some interest is recorded in Derbyshire in 1322, when Emma,
daughter of William Culhare, while drawing water from the 'colepyt' at
Morley was killed by 'le Damp,' _i.e._ choke damp.[29] This is one of
the very few early references to choke damp, or 'stithe,' as it was
often called, and the case is also interesting because, as water from a
coal pit could hardly be good for either drinking or washing purposes,
she must have been engaged in draining the pit, and this suggests a
pit of rather exceptional dimensions. A more certain indication of a
considerable depth having been attained is given forty years later in
the case of another pit at Morley Park, said to have been drowned, or
flooded, 'for lack of a gutter.'[30] This may only refer to a surface
drain, but there is abundant proof that regular drainage by watergates,
soughs, or adits had already come into use, and that coal-mining had
reached the 'pit and adit' stage. In this system of working, the
water, always the most troublesome enemy of the miner, was drawn off
by a subterranean drain leading from the bottom of the pit. It need
hardly be pointed out that the system was only practicable on fairly
high ground, where the bottom of the pit was above the level of free
drainage: in such a case a horizontal gallery, or adit, could be
driven from a suitable point on the face of the hill slightly below
the bottom of the pit to strike the latter, and a wooden sough,[31] or
drain, of which the sections were known in Warwickshire as 'dearns,'
could be laid to carry the water from the pit to a convenient point
of discharge. In 1354 the monks of Durham, when obtaining a lease of
coal mines in Ferry, had leave to place pits and watergates where
suitable,[32] and ten years later a lease of a mine at Gateshead
stipulated for provision of timber for the pits and water-gate.[33]
During the next century a certain number of pits were sunk in lower
ground, or to a greater depth, below the level of free drainage, and in
1486 we find the monks of Finchale, active exploiters of the northern
coal measures, erecting a pump worked by horse power at Moorhouse,[34]
but it is not until the second half of the sixteenth century, nearly
at the end of the medieval period, that we find such pumps, 'gins,' or
baling engines, and similar machines in common use.

Piecing together information afforded by scattered entries, we can
obtain some idea of the working of a coal pit about the end of the
fifteenth century. After the overseer, or a body of miners, had
inspected the ground and chosen a likely place, a space was marked out,
and a small sum distributed among the workers as earnest money. The
pit was then sunk at such charge as might be agreed upon: at Heworth
in 1376 the charge was six shillings the fathom,[35] at Griff in 1603
six shillings the ell.[36] A small 'reward' was paid when the vein
of coal was struck, the pit was then cleaned up and timbered, and a
water-gate or adit driven to afford drainage and ventilation. Over the
mouth of the pit was erected a thatched 'hovel' with wattled sides to
keep the wind and rain from the pit, and in this was a windlass for
raising the corves. The workmen consisted of hewers, who cut the coal,
and bearers who carried it to the bottom of the pit and filled the
corves: they were under the control of the 'viewer,' whose duty it was
'to see under the ground that the work was orderly wrought,' and the
'overman,' who had 'to see such work as come up at every pit to be for
the coal owner's profit.'[37] Their wages do not appear to have been
much, if at all, above those of the ordinary labourer or unskilled
artisan. Owing no doubt to the comparatively late rise of the industry
and the simplicity of the work, no refining or skilled manipulation
being required as in the case of metallic ores, the coal miners
never acquired the privileged position of the 'free miners' of Dean,
Derbyshire, Cumberland, and Cornwall.[38] The work was not attractive,
and the supply of labour seems occasionally to have run dry. So
much was this the case after the Black Death in 1350 and the second
epidemic of 1366 that the lessees of the great mines at Whickham and
Gateshead had to resort to forced labour, and obtained leave to impress
workmen.[39] Much later, about 1580, the Winlaton pits were hampered
by lack of workmen and the owners, having sent into Scotland for
more hands with little success, had to hire women and even then were
short-handed, to say nothing of being troubled with incompetent men who
for their negligence and false work had to be 'laid in the stocks,' and
even 'expulsed oute of their worke.'[40]

The question of mineral rights as regards coal is complicated by the
variety of local customs. In some cases, as at Bolsover,[41] the
manorial tenants had the right to dig sea coal in the waste and forest
land for their own use; but it was probably usual to charge a fee for
licence to dig, and this was clearly the practice at Wakefield.[42] So
far as copyhold lands were concerned the lord of the manor, or his
farmer, appears as a rule to have had the power to dig without paying
the tenant compensation. This was certainly being done at Houghton,
in Yorkshire, and in the adjacent manor of Kipax in 1578, and the
undoubted injury to the copyholders was held to be counterbalanced by
the advantage to the neighbourhood of a cheap supply of coal.[43] The
uncertainty of the law and the conflicting claims of ground landlords,
tenants, and prospectors led to a plentiful crop of legal actions. For
the most part these were actions for trespass in digging coal without
leave, occasionally complicated by counter appeals.[44] In the first
half of the sixteenth century, for instance, Nicholas Strelley, being
impleaded for trespass by Sir John Willoughby, set forth that he had a
pit in Strelley from which he obtained much coal, to the advantage of
the neighbourhood and of 'the schyres of Leicestre and Lincoln, being
very baren and scarce contres of all maner of fuell'; and no doubt,
though he omitted to say so, to his own advantage; now, owing to the
deepness of the mine and the amount of water, the old pit could only be
worked if a sough or drain were constructed at an unreasonable expense;
he had therefore dug a fresh pit on the borders of Strelly close to
Sir John's manor of Wollaton, purposing to use an old sough running
through Sir John's ground. Sir John had promptly blocked the sough
with a 'counter-mure' and brought actions for trespass, and Nicholas
Strelley, much aggrieved, invoked the aid of the Star Chamber.[45]
The same court was also invoked a few years later by William Bolles,
who complained that by the procurement of Sir William Hussey certain
persons came to Newthorpe Mere in Gresley and 'most cruelly and
maliciously cutt in peaces brake and caste downe dyvers frames of
tymbre made upon and in one pitte made and sonken to gett cooles, and
cutt in peaces dyvers greate ropes loomes and tooles apperteyninge to
the said woorke at the said pitte,' the offenders being unidentified
as the outrage took place 'in the night tyme when every good trew and
faithful subjecte ought to take their reste.'[46]

Presuming an undisputed title, the owner of coal measures could exploit
them in a variety of ways. He might work them himself; the outlay would
be small, provided extensive drainage operations were not required,
for wages, as we have said, were low and the equipment of the mine,
consisting of a few picks, iron bars or wedges, wooden shovels shod
with iron and baskets, buckets, and ropes, inexpensive, and there was
a steady sale for the coal, though the price of coal varied so greatly
and was so much affected by cost of carriage that it is not possible
to give even an approximate average value for the medieval period; the
question being further complicated by the extraordinary variety of
measure employed. Coal is quoted in terms of the 'hundredweight,' the
'quarter' (valued at Colchester in 1296 at 6d.),[47] the 'seam' (or
horse-load), the 'load,' which may be either horse or wain load, the
'scope,' which appears to be equivalent to the 'corf,' or basket, the
'roke' or 'rowe,' the 'rod' or 'perch' (a measure apparently peculiar
to Warwickshire),[48] the 'butress' and the 'three-quarters' (of a
buttress), and most commonly in the Tyne district by the 'fother,'
'chalder,' or 'chaldron' and 'ten,' and also by the 'keel' or barge
load. Where the owner did not work the coals himself he could either
issue annual licences to dig coal or lease the mines for a term of
years.[49] The earliest leases give a vague general permission to dig
coal wherever found within the lands in question, but it soon became
usual to limit the output either by fixing the maximum amount to be
taken in one day, or more usually in early leases by restricting the
number of workmen to be employed. In 1326 Hugh of Scheynton granted to
Adam Peyeson land at Benthall with all quarries of sea coal, employing
four labourers to dig the same, and as many as he chose to carry the
coals to the Severn.[50] Slightly before this date we find that payment
was made at Belper according to the number of picks employed, the
royalty on one pick in 1315 being over £4.[51] In 1380 the prior of
Beauvale in leasing a mine of sea coal at Newthorpe to Robert Pascayl
and seven other partners,[52] stipulated that they should have only got
two men in the pit, a viewer (_servaunt de south la terre_), and three
men above ground. The lessees of a pit at Trillesden in 1447 were 'to
work and win coal every day overable [_i.e._ working day] with three
picks and ilk pick to win every day 60 scopes,'[53] and at Nuneaton,
in 1553, the lessees were not to employ more than six workmen at the
time.[54] In this latter case there was a further stipulation that the
pits when exhausted should be filled up with 'yearthe and slecke,'
while at Trillesden the pit was to be worked workmanlike and the miners
were to 'save the field standing,' pointing to a fairly elaborate
system of galleries and pillars liable to subsidence if not properly
planned.[55] But the most important lease was that of five mines in
Whickham, made in 1356 by Bishop Hatfield of Durham to Sir Thomas Gray
and the Rector of Whickham for the enormous rent of 500 marks (£333,
6s. 8d.).[56] In this case the lessees were limited to one keel (about
twenty tons) daily from each mine; but on the other hand the bishop
agreed never to take their workmen away, and not to open any fresh pits
in the district, and not to sell the coal from his existing pits at
Gateshead to ships. A century later Sir William Eure leased some of the
most important Durham coal mines, his daily output being restricted to
340 corves at Raly, 300 at Toftes, 600 at Hartkeld, and 20 at any other
mines, with the right of making up from one mine any deficiency in
another, and also of making up any deficiency caused by delays due to
'styth' or choke-damp, which appears to have been so troublesome in the
hot season as to cause a complete suspension of work. Under this lease
Sir William obtained at Raly in one week of 1460, some 1800 corves,
each of 2½ bushels, making rather over 140 chalders, paying 5d. a day
to each of the three hewers, the three barrowmen, who brought the coal
to the foot of the shaft, and the four drawers who raised and banked

In the Whickham lease of 1356 it will be noticed that the bishop
undertook not to allow coals from his own pits to be exported by sea.
The sea-borne trade in coals from Newcastle and the Tyne was obtaining
considerable dimensions; ten years later, in 1366, a large purchase of
coal was made at Winlaton for the king's works at Windsor. The sheriff
of Northumberland accounted for £165, 5s. 2d. expended on the purchase
and carriage to London of 576 chalder of coals, reckoning by the
'great hundred' of six score, so that there were actually shipped 676
chalder, but of this 86 chalder had to be written off, partly through
some being jettisoned during a sudden storm at sea, and partly because
the London chalder was much bigger than that used in Northumberland,
the difference amounting to about five per cent.[58] The chalder,
or chaldron, seems to have been originally about eighteen to twenty
hundredweight, and from early times twenty of these made the load of a
keel, or coal barge, but in order to evade the export duty of 2d. on
every keel, or at least to compensate for it, it became the practice
to build keels of twenty-two or twenty-three chalder burden. This was
forbidden in 1385,[59] but the prohibition being evaded, an Act was
passed in 1421[60] by which the actual capacity of each keel had to
be marked upon it. This in turn was evaded by a rapid increase in the
size of the chalder, until by the time of Elizabeth it had doubled
its original weight, and the 'ten' (chalder) was the equivalent of
the keel of twenty tons.[61] Returning to the fourteenth century,
the customs accounts of the port of Newcastle[62] show that between
Michaelmas 1377 and Michaelmas 1378 as much as 7338 chalder of coal,
valued at 2s. the chalder, was exported to foreign countries. For the
most part this went to the Low Countries—Sluys, Bremerhaven, Flushing,
and Dunkirk being amongst the ports mentioned, though in a number of
cases ships of 'Lumbardye' occur, the average quantity taken by each
vessel being a little less than fifty chalder. Of the home trade for
this period no record is obtainable, and it is not until the time
of Elizabeth that we can compare the exports to home and foreign
ports. For the seven years 1591-7, the amount sent abroad was 95,558
chalder, rising from 10,000 in 1591 to 18,000 in 1593, and then falling
gradually back to 10,000, while the home trade amounted to 418,200
chalder, increasing steadily from 45,700 up to over 70,000.[63] The
supremacy of Newcastle is shown by a comparison of the amounts of coal
exported to foreign countries from the chief English ports in 1592.[64]
Newcastle comes first with 12,635 chalder, then Bristol with 580, Wales
with 464, and Liverpool with 448.

The expansion of the home trade noticed in the returns for 1591-7
is borne out by an abundance of corroborative evidence, and may be
largely attributed to the great increase at this period in the use of
chimneys. Practically the chimney was an Elizabethan invention so far
as the smaller houses were concerned, and 'the multitude of chimnies
lately erected' was one of the changes most remarked upon by Harrison's
old friends at the time that he wrote his _Description of England_,
published in 1577. The reign of Elizabeth, therefore, when the rapid
increase in the demand for house coal, coupled with a rise in the
price, resulted in a rapid expansion of the industry in all parts of
the country, marks the end of the medieval period of coal mining and
the initiation of a new epoch with which we are not concerned.



Iron has been worked in Britain from the earliest historical times,
and flint implements have been found at Stainton-in-Furness and at
Battle in Sussex in positions suggesting that ironworks existed in
those places at the end of the Stone Age.[65] Julius Cæsar relates
that iron was produced along the coast of Britain, but only in small
quantities, its rarity causing it to be considered as a precious metal,
so that iron bars were current among the natives as money. The coming
of the Romans soon changed this. They were not slow to see the value
of the island's mineral wealth and to turn it to account. Ironworks
sprang up all over the country: at Maresfield in Sussex they were
apparently in full swing by the time of Vespasian (died A.D. 69), and
in the neighbourhood of Battle fifty years later. Even more important
were the workings in the West, on the banks of the Wye and in the
Forest of Dean. Near Coleford have been found remains of Roman mines
with shallow shafts and adits, while round Whitchurch, Goodrich, and
Redbrook are enormous deposits of 'cinders,' or slag, dating from
the same period.[66] Ariconium, near Ross, was a city of smiths and
forgemen; and Bath (Aquae Sulis) is often said to have had a 'collegium
fabricensium,' or gild of smiths, as one of its members, Julius
Vitalis, armourer of the 20th Legion, dying after nine years' service,
was given a public funeral here by his gild; but it seems more probable
that the seat of the gild was at Chester, and that Julius had come to
Bath for his health.[67]

It is a most remarkable fact that although abundant circumstantial
evidence of the Roman exploitation of British iron exists in the shape
of coins and other relics found upon the site of the works, there is
practically no trace of any such working during the Saxon period until
shortly before the Conquest. The furnaces must have been still in blast
when the Saxons landed; they were a warlike race, possessing a full
appreciation of iron and something of the Scandinavian admiration for
smithcraft, yet there is hardly a trace of their having worked iron
in this country. Few, if any, objects definitely assignable to this
period have been found upon the site of iron works, and documentary
evidence is almost non-existent. There is a charter of Oswy, King of
Kent, given in 689, by which he grants to the abbey of St. Peter of
Canterbury land at Liminge 'in which there is known to be a mine of
iron';[68] and there is the legend that about 700 A.D. Alcester, in
Warwickshire, was the centre of busy ironworks, peopled with smiths,
who, for their hardness of heart in refusing to listen to St. Egwin,
and endeavouring to drown his voice by beating on their anvils, were
swallowed up by the earth;[69] but the rest is silence, until we come
to the time of Edward the Confessor. The Domesday Survey shows that
in the time of the Confessor, Gloucester rendered as part of its
farm 36 dicres of iron, probably in the form of horseshoes, and 100
rods suitable for making bolts for the king's ships,[70] while from
Pucklechurch in the same country came yearly 90 'blooms' of iron.[71]
The same Survey mentions that there were six smiths in Hereford,
each of whom had yearly to make for the king 120 horseshoes, and it
also refers to iron mines on the borders of Cheshire, in Sussex and

During the twelfth century the industry appears to have expanded. In
the North, at Egremont, we read of the grant of an iron mine to the
monks of St. Bees,[72] and at Denby a similar grant was made about
1180 by William FitzOsbert to the abbey of Byland.[73] In Derbyshire,
towards the end of the century, Sir Walter de Abbetoft gave to the
monks of Louth Park wood at Birley in Brampton and two smithies, namely
one bloomery and one forge, with the right to take beech and elm for
fuel.[74] But it was in the south-west that the greatest development
took place. During the whole of this century the Forest of Dean was the
centre of the iron industry, and played the part that Birmingham has
played in more recent times. All through the reign of Henry II. the
accounts of the sheriffs of Gloucester[75] tell of a constant output
of iron, both rough and manufactured, iron bars, nails, pickaxes, and
hammers sent to Woodstock, Winchester, and Brill, where the king was
carrying out extensive building operations, horseshoes supplied to the
army, arrows and other warlike materials despatched to France, spades,
pickaxes, and other miners' tools provided for the Irish expedition
of 1172, iron bought for the Crusade which Henry projected, but did
not live to perform, and 50,000 horseshoes made for the actual Crusade
of Richard I. Throughout the thirteenth century the Forest of Dean
retained its practical monopoly of the English iron trade, so far at
least as the southern counties were concerned, and during the whole of
that time members of the family of Malemort were employed at a forge
near the castle of St. Briavels turning out enormous stores of bolts
for cross-bows and other war material.[76] But a rival was now growing
up in the Weald of Sussex and Kent. As early as 1254 the sheriff of
Sussex had been called upon to provide 30,000 horseshoes and 60,000
nails, presumably of local manufacture,[77] and in 1275 Master Henry
of Lewes, who had been the king's chief smith for the past twenty
years,[78] purchased 406 iron rods (_kiville_) 'in the Weald' for £16,
17s. 11d.,[79] while a year or two later he obtained another 75 rods
from the same source and paid £4, 3s. 4d. 'to a certain smith in the
Weald for 100 iron rods.'[80]

The Wealden works had the advantage, a great advantage in the case
of so heavy a material as iron, of nearness to London, and soon
obtained a footing in the London markets with the imported Spanish
iron at the expense of Gloucestershire, which at the beginning of
the reign of Henry III. had been sending its iron to Westminster and
into Sussex.[81] It must not be imagined that the northern counties
were neglecting their mineral wealth all this time; they were on the
contrary very active, and were exploiting their iron with vigour and
success. On the lands of Peter de Brus in Cleveland in 1271 there
were five small forges each valued at 10s., and two larger worth £4
each:[82] these sums may not sound very imposing, but it must be borne
in mind that the best land in that district was then worth only 1s. an
acre. Twenty years later the forges belonging to Furness Abbey yielded
a profit of £6, 13s. 4d., as compared with a profit on flocks and herds
of only £3, 11s. 3d., and it is probable that the Abbey had at least
forty forges then working on their lands.[83] The great quantity of
iron obtained at Furness, also, formed the most valuable part of the
booty carried off by the Scots in their raid in 1316.[84] But the large
production of iron in the northern counties was absorbed by their own
local requirements, and this was still more the case with the smaller
quantities smelted in Northamptonshire and Rutland. Derbyshire must
have been another important centre, for as early as 1257 four or five
forges in the Belper ward of Duffield Frith were yielding about £10
each yearly, and in 1314 two forges in Belper accounted for £63, 6s.
8d. in thirty-four weeks, and there was a third, yielding nearly £7,
10s. for only eleven weeks' work,[85] but there is nothing to show
that Derbyshire iron was ever sent south, and from the middle of the
fourteenth century such English iron as was used in London was almost
entirely drawn from the Weald.

In order to understand how Sussex and Kent, where no iron has been
worked for the last hundred years, came to be the centres of a great
iron industry in medieval times, it must be borne in mind that charcoal
was the only fuel used for iron working[86] until Dud Dudley discovered
a method of using pit coal, about 1620, a date which may be considered
to mark the end of the medieval period in iron mining. The earliest
and most primitive method of smelting iron was by setting a hearth
of wood and charcoal on a wind-swept hill or in some other draughty
position, heaping upon it alternate layers of ore and charcoal, and
covering the whole with clay, to retain the heat, leaving vents at
the base for the wind to enter and the iron to come out.[87] A slight
advance on this substituted a short cylindrical furnace of stone for
the containing layer of clay, and an ingenious device for increasing
the draught was used by the Romans at Lanchester, in Durham, where two
narrow tunnels were made on the side of a hill, with wide mouths facing
to the west, the quarter from which the wind blows most frequently in
this valley, tapering to a narrow bore at the hearth.[88] Even under
the most favourable conditions such a furnace would reduce a very small
percentage of the ore to metal,[89] and the use of an auxiliary blast,
produced by bellows, must have been resorted to at a quite early date.
Prior to the fifteenth century such bellows were almost invariably
worked by hand, or rather by foot, for the blowers stood upon the
bellows, holding on to a bar, but during the fifteenth century water
power was introduced in many parts of the country, and the bellows
were driven by water-wheels. Such was apparently the case in Weardale
in 1408,[90] probably in the Forest of Dean about the same date, and
clearly in Derbyshire by the end of the century.[91]

In several early charters granting mineral rights to Furness Abbey,
mention is made of the privilege of using water from the grantor's
streams; but where particulars are given, as in the case of the charter
of Hugh de Moresby made in 1270, the water is always stated to be for
the washing of the ore, and not for power.[92] The ore, or 'mine,' to
use the more common medieval term, was sometimes dug on the 'open-cast'
system, but more usually by a series of bell or beehive pits.[93] It
was then roughly cleansed by washing on a coarse sieve, and was next
subjected to a preliminary burning, or 'elyng,'[94] as it was termed at
the Tudeley forge in the fourteenth century.[95] The burnt ore was then
broken and carried to the furnace. In the sixteenth century this was a
building in the shape of a truncated cone, about twenty-four feet in
diameter, and not more than thirty feet high, in the base of which was
a cupped, or bowl-shaped, hearth of sandstone, and such we may assume
the earlier furnaces also to have been. Alternate charges of mine and
charcoal were fed into the furnace from the top, the iron settling
down into the bowl of the hearth, from which it was taken as a lump or
'bloom.' From the sixteenth century, when by the use of a more powerful
blast a higher temperature was obtainable and cast iron was produced,
the molten iron was drawn off from time to time through a vent at the
bottom of the hearth into a bed of sand. In Sussex and Gloucestershire
it seems to have been usual to form in the sand one large oblong
depression in the direct course of the flow of the iron with a number
of smaller depressions at right angles to the first, the large mass of
iron thus moulded being known as a 'sow,' and the smaller blocks as

There were in the earlier periods of the industry a very large number
of smelting hearths, consisting practically of an ordinary blacksmith's
forge with a cup-shaped hearth, or crucible, in the bottom of which the
imperfectly molten iron accumulated. Such were the itinerant forges
(_fabricæ errantes_) in the Forest of Dean, of which there were as
many as sixty in blast at the end of the thirteenth century.[96] The
buildings attached to such a forge would naturally be merely temporary
sheds, such as were referred to by the Earl of Richmond in 1281, when
he gave leave to the monks of Jervaux to cut wood in his forest to
smelt iron and to make two small sheds (_logias_) 'without nail, bolt,
or wall,' so that if the smelters moved to another place (as these
itinerant forges did when the ore or the fuel became exhausted) they
should pull down the sheds and erect others.[97] In this instance the
grant of two sheds may imply two smelting-houses, but it seems more
probable that one was the 'bloomery,' or smelting forge, and the other
the smithy, which invariably accompanied the bloomery.[98] With this
simple type of forge the product was a lump of malleable iron, which
was purified by hammering and worked up at the smithy, but the pig
iron produced by the larger high blast furnace required more elaborate
treatment. The sow was carried from the furnace to the forge, 'finery'
or 'strynghearth,' where it was heated on an open hearth and reduced
by the sledge, or by the water-hammer[99] when available, to a large
ingot or 'bloom.'[100] The latter was, as a rule, reheated, divided
and worked into bars, the completion of which was usually carried out
in the seventeenth century at a third hearth, the 'chafery,' but this
appears to have been an elaboration of post-medieval date. The sows
naturally varied in size according to the capacity of the furnace, and
this, it may be observed, was much greater at the end of a 'blowing'
than at the beginning, owing to the fire eating away the hearth,
especially if too large a proportion of intractable 'hot' ore were
used;[101] but the blooms were made of standard weight. At the same
time the weight of the bloom, though constant in any given district,
varied in different parts of the country. In Weardale it seems to have
been about two hundredweight, being composed of fifteen stones, each
of thirteen pounds;[102] and in Furness it was about the same weight,
but contained fourteen stones of fourteen pounds.[103] On the other
hand, we find blooms selling at the Kentish ironworks of Tudeley for
3s. 4d. in the reign of Edward III.,[104] when iron bought for repairs
to Leeds Castle cost about 7s. the hundredweight,[105] which, allowing
for cost of carriage, agrees fairly well with the three quarters of
a hundredweight attributed to the Sussex bloom in the seventeenth
century.[106] As regards the price of iron, it was always high during
the medieval period, but naturally varied with conditions of demand
and supply, cost of carriage, and the quality of the iron. To take
a late instance: in Staffordshire in 1583, 'coldshear,' or brittle
iron, fetched only £9 the ton when tough iron fetched £12.[107] In
Sussex[108] in 1539 iron sold on the spot for from £5 to £7 the ton,
allowing a profit of 20s. the ton, and ten years later £8 at the forge
and about £9, 5s. in London, the cost of carriage to London being 9s.
the ton.[109]

The number of workmen employed at the different works naturally
varied, but the surveyor of the iron mills in Ashdown Forest in 1539
laid down the rule:[110] 'That to melt the sowes in ij forges or
fynories there must be iiij persones, and at the forge to melt the
blomes there must be ij persones. So are there at every forge ij
persones wherof the oone holdeth the work at the hamo^r and the second
kepeth the work hot. M^d that oone man cannot kepe the hamo^r bicause
the work must be kept in such hete that they may not shifte handes.'

At the Bedburn forge in 1408,[111] there were a 'blomer' or 'smythman,'
a smith and a foreman, as well as a 'colier' or charcoal burner. The
blomer was paid 6d. for every bloom smelted, of which the average
production was six in a week, the largest output recorded in any week
being ten blooms. For working up the bloom at the forge, the smith
received 6d. and an extra penny for cutting it up into bars, while
the foreman, who in spite of his name does not seem to have had any
staff of workmen under him, received 2d. a bloom when he assisted at
the smelting, and 3d. at the reworking. Such additional labour as was
required was supplied by the wives of the smith and foreman, who did
odd jobs, breaking up the ore, attending to the bellows, or helping
their husbands, earning wages paid at first on a vague but rather
high scale, but falling afterwards to the settled rate of a halfpenny
a bloom. An allowance of one penny a week was made for ale for the
workmen; and a similar munificent allowance was made 'for drink for the
four blowers' at Tudeley in 1353.[112] At this Tudeley forge in 1333,
the workmen were paid in kind, receiving every seventh bloom,[113] a
payment roughly equivalent to 6d. a bloom, but by 1353 this system had
been dropped, and they were paid from 7½d. to 9½d. a bloom. In addition
to the 'seventh bloom,' we find mention in 1333 of a customary payment
to the 'Forblouweris'[114] of 2¼d. a bloom, and in the 1353 account we
find 'rewards' paid to the master blower and three other blowers; no
other workmen are mentioned by name, and as the whole process of making
the blooms is here referred to as 'blowyng' we may probably assume that
the staff of these Kentish works consisted of four men. The Sussex iron
mills at Sheffield in Fletching in 1549 employed one hammerman and
his assistant,[115] two fyners and their two servants, a founder, and
a filler,[116] the business of the latter being to keep the furnace
charged. Here the founder was paid 8s., and the filler 6s. for each
'foundye,' or working week of six days, and the hammerman and fyners
received between them 13s. 4d. a ton, about three tons being produced
each 'foundye.'

In addition to the actual ironworkers every forge afforded employment
to a number of charcoal-burners and miners. For the most part these
latter, as was the case with the coal miners, ranked as ordinary
labourers, but in the Forest of Dean they formed a close corporation
of 'free miners,' possessing an organisation and privileges of
considerable importance and antiquity.[117] So far as can be judged the
customs of the free miners were traditional, based on prescription,
recognised as early as the time of Henry III., and officially confirmed
by Edward I. By these customs the right of mining was restricted to the
free miners resident within the bounds of the Forest, and they had also
control of the export of the iron ore, all persons carrying the same
down the Severn being bound to pay dues to the miners under penalty
of forfeiture of their boat. The free miners had also the right of
digging anywhere within the Forest, except in gardens, orchards, and
curtilages; the lord of the soil, who might be the king or a private
landowner, being entitled to a share as a member of the fellowship,
almost always consisting of four 'verns' or partners. Besides the
right thus to open a mine the miners had a claim to access thereto
from the highway, and to timber for their works. In return, the king
received from every miner who raised three loads of ore in a week one
penny, which was collected by the 'gaveller' every Tuesday 'between
Mattens and Masse,' and he had also the right to certain quantities of
'law-ore' from the different mines every week, for which the miners
were paid at the rate of a penny a load, and if he was working an
itinerant forge they were bound to supply ore therefor at the same
rate, and finally there was a royal export duty of a halfpenny on every
load of ore taken out of the Forest.[118]

The right of mining within the forest was restricted, as we have
already said, to the resident free miners, and they might only employ
the labour of their own family or apprentices. These rights to their
mines, or shares therein, were definite, and could be bequeathed by
will; and in order to prevent trespass the rule was laid down that no
man should start a fresh working near that of another miner 'within so
much space that the miner may stand and cast ridding[119] and stones
so far from him with a bale, as the manner is.' When disputes arose
between the miners, they were settled at their own court, held every
three weeks at St. Briavels, under the presidency of the Constable,
appeals being made, if necessary, from the normal jury of twelve
miners to juries of twenty-four or forty-eight. These Mine Law Courts
continued to be held until the latter half of the eighteenth century;
but we are not here concerned with their later proceedings and constant
endeavours to maintain restrictions which had long passed out of date;
endeavours which seem to have resulted chiefly in promoting 'the
abominable sin of perjury,' so that it was found necessary to ordain
that any miner convicted thereof should be expelled and 'all the
working tooles and habitt burned before his face.' What those tools
and costume were in the fifteenth century, and until modern times, may
be seen on a brass in Newland Church, whereon is depicted a free miner
wearing a cap and leather breeches tied below the knee, with a wooden
mine-hod slung over his shoulder, carrying a small mattock in his right
hand, and holding a candlestick between his teeth.[120]

Although not so intimately connected with iron working as the smiths,
smelters and miners, the charcoal-burners were auxiliaries without whom
the industry could not have existed, and who in turn derived their
living largely from that industry. The amount of wood consumed by the
iron works was enormous. As an example we may take the case of the two
Sussex mills of Sheffield and Worth for 1547-9.[121] At Sheffield 6300
cords of wood were 'coled' for the furnace, and 6750 cords for the
forge; at Worth the amounts were respectively nearly 5900 and 2750
cords; the cords being 125 cubic feet, this represents an expenditure
of about 2,175,000 cubic feet of timber for these two works alone in
less than two years. Later, in 1580, it was stated that a beech tree
of one foot square 'at the stubbe' would make one and a half loads of
charcoal, and the ironworks at Monkswood, near Tintern, would require
600 such trees every year,[122] while some thirty years later Norden
referred to the fact that there were in Sussex alone about 140 forges
using two, three, or four loads of charcoal apiece daily. Acts were
passed in 1558, 1581, and 1585 regulating the cutting of wood for
furnaces and prohibiting the use of timber trees for charcoal, but
they were evaded, and the destruction of trees continued until in the
eighteenth century charcoal was supplanted by mineral coal, the first
successful use of which for iron smelting, by Dud Dudley in 1620,
marks, as we have said, the termination of the medieval period.



The lead-mining industry in England is important and interesting from
its antiquity, the value of its produce, large quantities of silver
being obtained from this source during the medieval period, and the
organisation of its workers. Although lacking the completeness of
organisation which rendered the tinners of Cornwall and Devon almost
an independent race, the lead miners of Alston Moor, Derbyshire, and
the Mendips, the three great mining camps of England, were more highly
organised than the iron miners of Dean, who form the lowest class of
privileged 'free miners.'

The lead mines of Britain were worked by the Romans from the earliest
days of their occupation of the island, pigs of lead having been found
in the Mendips stamped with the titles of Britannicus (A.D. 44-48)
and Claudius (A.D. 49).[123] Mines of this period exist at Shelve and
Snailbeach in Shropshire and elsewhere, and smelting-hearths have been
found at Minsterley in the same county and at Matlock.[124] Nor was
the industry discontinued after the departure of the Romans. Lead mines
at Wirksworth in Derbyshire were leased by the Abbess of Repton to a
certain Duke Humbert in 835,[125] and a 'leadgedelf' at Penpark Hole
in Gloucestershire is mentioned in 882,[126] though that county was
not a great centre of lead production at a later date. In the time of
Edward the Confessor the Derbyshire mines of Bakewell, Ashford, and
Hope yielded £30, besides five wainloads of lead, but in 1086 their
yearly value had fallen, for some reason, to £10, 6s. Besides these
three mines Domesday Book alludes to others at Wirksworth, Metesford,
and Crich.[127]

During the twelfth century the output of lead was considerable. The
'mines of Carlisle,' that is to say of Alston Moor, on the borders of
Cumberland, Yorkshire, and Northumberland, occur on the Pipe Roll of
1130, and were farmed during the reign of Henry II.[128] at an average
rent of £100; during the same reign large quantities of lead from
Derbyshire were carried across to Boston and shipped to London and the
Continent: the Shropshire mines were also active, one hundred and ten
loads of lead being sent down to Amesbury in 1181 alone. King Stephen
granted to the Bishop of Durham certain mines in Weardale, probably
of silver-bearing lead, as the non-precious minerals already belonged
to the bishopric, and during the vacancy of the see of Durham in
1196 considerable issues of silver were accounted for.[129] A similar
grant of lead mines in Somerset was made to Bishop Reginald of Bath by
Richard I.[130] How soon the three great mining camps acquired their
privileges and organisation cannot be definitely stated: some of the
regulations seem to have been traditional from very early times, even
in the case of the Mendip mines, of which the laws were largely based
upon the Derbyshire code. So far as the northern mines are concerned,
we find Henry III. in 1235 confirming to the miners of Alston the
liberties and privileges 'which they used to have.'[131]

Of the regulations in force at Alston Moor[132] we have but few
details, but of the laws of Derbyshire[133] and the Mendips[134] we
have ample information. In each case there was a mine court, known
in Derbyshire as the 'berghmote' or 'barmote,' of which the ordinary
meetings were held every three weeks and special sessions twice a year,
at Easter and Michaelmas. The 'body of the court' consisted of twelve,
or in the 'great courts' twenty-four, miners of good standing and the
presiding officer was in Derbyshire the barmaster and in Somerset the
lead-reeve: at Alston[135] he appears as bailiff, 'king's serjeant,'
and steward. Associated with this official was the coroner:[136] the
two offices indeed seem to have been combined at Alston during the
thirteenth century as in 1279 complaint was made that the coroners of
the Scottish king's liberty of Tindale (that portion of the present
county of Northumberland which adjoins Alston Moor) were acting in
the mine 'where the serjeant of the mine appointed by the English
king ought to exercise the office of coroner in all things':[137] by
1356, however, it was the custom for the Alston miners to elect a
coroner separate from the bailiff or king's serjeant.[138] The exact
degree of independence possessed by these mine courts is difficult to
determine. During eyres in Cumberland it was customary to send special
justices to Alston to hold the pleas of the Crown. This was already an
old-established custom in 1246,[139] and we find that Robert de Vipont,
who about the beginning of the reign of Edward I. had formed a manor
out of what had been moor and waste, had usurped the right to try
thieves in his manor court, when they ought only to be tried in the
mine court.[140] Even in Derbyshire there was a tendency to use the
courts of the Duchy of Lancaster instead of, or to overrule, the mine
courts, at least in the sixteenth century.[141]

By the Derbyshire mine law a small trespass was punishable by a fine
of 2d., but if this was not paid at once the fine was doubled each
successive day until it reached the sum of 5s. 4d. This same sum of 5s.
4d. (doubled in a similar way up to 100s.) was the fine for bloodshed,
or for the offence of encroaching upon another man's claim underground.
For a thrice-repeated theft of ore the offender's hand was pinned
with a knife to the uprights of his windlass, and if he succeeded in
getting free he had to forswear the mine for ever. A similarly savage
and primitive measure of justice was meted out to the Mendip miner who
stole lead worth 13½d.: his property was forfeited, and the bailiff was
to bring him 'where hys howse or wore [_i.e._ ore] hys, hys work and
towlls with all instruments belongyng to that occupacyon and then put
hym in hys howss or working place and set fyer yn all together about
hym—banyshe hym from that occupacyon for ever by fore the face of all
the myners there.' Both methods of punishment are clearly of early
origin, and it seems probable that they originally involved the death
of the thief, though a later and more humane generation connived at his
escape while retaining the ancient form of punishment. If the burnt
thief did not dread the fire, but returned and stole again, he was
handed over to the sheriff's officers and committed to prison, being
no longer one of the privileged community. It is worth noting that the
great mining camp on the borders of Cornwall and Devon, though not
apparently possessing any mine court, had, as we might expect, certain
control over the excesses of the miners, as in 1302 there was made 'a
pit in the mine by way of prison to frighten (_ad terrorem_) evildoers
and bad workmen.'[142] The Devon miner, as we have just said, had no
code of laws or privileges; at Alston the code applied only to the
miners actually living in the collection of 'shiels,' or huts on the
Moor; in Derbyshire the full system of regulations was confined to the
royal 'field,' though a few private owners of mining fields established
barmotes on similar lines;[143] but the customs of the Mendips appear
to have applied throughout the district, whoever might be lord of the

By mining law the miner had the right to prospect anywhere except in
churchyards, gardens, orchards, and highways; on the Mendips, however,
he had first to go through the formality of asking leave of the
lord of the soil, or of his lead-reeve, who could not refuse their
permission; he might then pitch where he pleased and break ground
as he thought best. In Derbyshire, when the prospector had struck a
promising 'rake' or vein, he cut a cross in the ground and went to the
barmaster, who came and staked out the claim into 'meers,' each being
four perches of twenty-four feet: the first two meers were given to
the finder, the third to the king, as lord of the soil, and the others
to those miners who first demanded them. Within three days the owner
of a meer must set up a 'stow,'[144] a wooden frame with two uprights
joined by a bar or spindle placed at the top of the shaft, and serving
as a windlass. If the claim was not then worked, the barmaster nicked
the spindle, and if this were done three times, and the claim was still
unworked, it was declared forfeit and granted to the first applicant.
The regulations in use on the Mendip field were rather different. There
the pitches or claims, instead of being of one standard size, were
decided by the throw of the 'hack' or small pick, weighing 3 lbs. 14
oz. 'Every man when he doth begyn hys pyt, otherwyse callyd a grouff,
shaull have hys haks throw ij weys after the rake,[145] so that he
do stand to the gyrdyl or wast in the gruff'; while this decided the
limits of the pitch along the line of the vein the pitcher had always
eighteen feet on either side of his 'grooffe or gribbe.' The hack,
however, was not thrown unless another party wished to pitch in the
neighbourhood; in that case the newcomer, or 'younger pitcher,' could
demand that the hack be thrown by the 'elder pitcher' and his partners,
'when they have their chine, rake or course,' that is to say, when they
have struck the vein. The lead-reeve then proffered the hack to one
of the elder pitchers, and if they failed to throw it within fourteen
days the younger pitcher had the throw.[146] The rules for reserving a
claim were probably founded on those in use in Derbyshire. 'The first
pytcher in any grounde muste make yt perfecte wyth a caddel of tymber
and a payre of styllyngs within fowre and twentie howers next after
the pyching.' Although this was the strict law, custom seems to have
been content with the making of the 'caddel,' some sort of framework of
timber, the first day, and to have allowed a month for the 'styllyngs,'
or stow. If a claim lay unworked for four weeks, the lead-reeve caused
proclamation to be made, and if the old partners did not turn up within
fourteen days, it was forfeited.

Besides the right of prospecting where they chose, the miners had
right of access to the nearest high-road, and in Derbyshire if this
were refused them the barmaster and two assistants might walk abreast
with arms stretched out, and so mark out a way direct from the mines
to the road, even through growing corn. They were also privileged to
take timber from the neighbouring woods for use in the mines, and in
Cumberland, where fuel was scarce, they might even prevent the owners
of the woods from cutting them until they had obtained a sufficient
supply for the furnaces. Their proprietary rights in their mines were
recognised, and they could dispose of them, wholly or in part, without
licence. They might also take their ore to what 'myndry' they pleased,
to be smelted, and the only restriction upon the sale of the ore or
lead was that in some places the king, or other lord of the soil, had
'coup,' that is to say pre-emption, the right of buying the ore at the
market price before it was offered to any other purchaser, and in 1295
we find the Derbyshire miners paying 4d. a load in respect of 'coup'
for licence to sell to whom they pleased.[147]

The terms upon which the miners held their mines varied. On private
lands, when the owner did not work the mines himself by hired labour,
he usually bargained for some proportion, an eighth, a tenth, or
a thirteenth, of the produce. On the Mendips the lord of the soil
received the tenth part as 'lot'; on the royal field of Derbyshire the
king had the thirteenth, and at Alston the ninth dish of ore, the dish
in the latter case being 'as much ore as a strong man can lift from the
ground.'[148] At Alston the king had in addition the fifteenth penny
from the other eight dishes, but had to provide at his own expense a
man called 'the driver,' who understood how to separate the silver from
the lead.[149] This method of paying a proportion of the produce was
clearly the fairest to all concerned, for, as the Cumberland miners
said in 1278, though they knew that there was ore enough to last to
the end of time, no one could tell the yearly value of the mines, as
it depended upon the richness of the ore they struck,[150] and in
the same way when Robert de Thorp was made warden of the Devon mines
in 1308,[151] it was expressly stated that no definite sum was to be
demanded of him, because the silver-bearing ore, the refined lead,
and the reworked slag all had 'diversetez de bonntez et quantitez
de respouns.' In addition to the payment of lot ore, the miners had
to give tithes to the Church. In some cases these tithes originated
in a definite grant, more often they seem to have been regarded as
compensation for the tithes of crops which would otherwise have grown
on the ground taken by the mines; but the strangest reason for claiming
them was that lead was itself a titheable crop, because it 'grew and
renewed in the veins.'[152]

While many small mines were worked by parties of free miners under
these conditions, for their own profit, and at their own risk, there
must have been from very early times a large number of poor men who
worked for the king, the lord of the soil, or capitalist adventurers,
receiving wages either by piece or by time. The regulations for the
payment of these hired miners in the royal mines of Beer Alston, in
Devonshire, drawn up in 1297 are of considerable interest.[153]

'As to the piecework of the miners, those who can find ore in their
diggings shall receive for piecework as before, that is to say 5s.
for the load,[154] as well of black as of white ore, if the white
cannot reasonably be put lower. And those who are engaged in "dead"
[_i.e._ unremunerative] work, and cannot find ore in their diggings,
and yet work more, for some dead work is harder than (digging in) the
vein, shall be at wages (_a lour soutz_) until they reach the ore, so
that all piecework be undertaken by two or three gangs who divide the
profits between themselves, as well to those doing dead work as to the

That the price of 5s. a load was calculated to pay the miners for
their preliminary unproductive 'dead' work, may be gathered from the
fact that 'tithe ore,' that is to say the ore paid to the Church, was
bought back from the rector of Beer at 2s. the load, and a further 9d.
was deducted from this sum for washing the ore.[155] At the same time
it is clear that where the 'dead' work was exceptionally heavy or the
eventual yield small this system of payment would not work; and in 1323
we find that the 'dead work' of clearing, searching, and digging into
an old mine in Devon was paid at the rate of 3s. 4d. the fathom, and
that two gangs of six men were paid at the daily rate of 7d.-9d., about
1½d. a head, for searching for the vein and for piercing the hard rock
to follow up the vein in hope of finding a richer vein.[156]

By the Ordinance of 1297 wages were to be paid every Saturday, though
as a matter of fact we find that they were constantly falling into

'All the ore of each week shall be measured before the Saturday and
carried to the boles or other places where it is to be smelted. And
knowledge shall be taken each Saturday or Sunday of the issues of each
week in all things. And the payments shall be made to the miners and
other workmen the same Saturday. And no miner shall remain in a market
town under colour of buying food, or in other manner after the ninth
hour on Sunday, without leave.'

Besides their wages the miners received such iron, steel, and ropes
as they required, free of charge, and had the use of a forge for the
repair of their tools.[157] At Beer, in 1297, there were three forges,
one for each of the three mines into which the field was divided,[158]
and each worked by a man and a boy. In addition to the smiths[159]
there would be, as auxiliaries, one or more candlemakers, carpenters,
charcoal-burners, and woodcutters. In many mines it was also necessary
to employ a number of hands in baling water out of the pits with
leathern bodges or buckets; during April 1323 an average of twenty
persons were so engaged at Beer Alston, and during one week the number
rose to forty-eight.[160] So greatly did the accumulation of water in
the pits interfere with work, that in early times the Devon mines were
closed down during the winter,[161] and it was not until about 1297
that means were found of dealing with this evil. About that date the
plan of draining the pits by means of 'avidods' or adits, that is to
say horizontal galleries driven from the bottom of the pits to a level
of free drainage on the surface, already in use in the tin mines, was
introduced into the lead mines. The ordinances of 1297 arranged for one
hundred tinners to work in 'avidods,' and the accounts of the working
of these mines for the same year show payments averaging £12, 10s.
to 'William Pepercorn and his partners,' and to six other gangs 'for
making avidods.'[162] It was probably in the following year that Walter
de Langton, Bishop of Chester, reported that the yield of the Beer mine
had been doubled by the new method of draining, as they could now work
as well in the winter as in the summer.[163]

The ore having been raised was broken up with a hammer, no mechanical
stamps being used apparently before the sixteenth century, if then,
though there is mention in 1302 of a machine (_ingenium_) for breaking
'black work' or slag.[164] It was then washed in 'buddles' or troughs,
with the aid of coarse sieves, women being frequently employed for
this process. The washed ore, separated as far as possible from stone
and other impurities, was then carried to the smelting furnace. The
commonest type of furnace was the 'bole,' a rough stone structure
like a limekiln, with an opening at the top, serving as a chimney,
and also for charging the furnace, and one or more vents at the base
for the blast. These boles were usually built in exposed and draughty
positions, and could only be used when the wind was favourable. At
an early date they were supplemented by 'slag-hearths' or furnaces
(_fornelli_) possessing an artificial blast and closely resembling
blacksmiths' forges. The bellows of these hearths were usually driven
by the feet of men or women, but a water mill was in use in Devon at
least as early as 1295,[165] and at Wolsingham, in Durham, in 1426
water power was used when available, the footblast being used during
dry seasons.[166] The fuel of the boles was brushwood, and that of
the hearths charcoal, with peat and, for the remelting of the lead,
sea-coal. In Devon mention is made of a third type of smelting house,
the 'hutte,' the nature of which is obscure. The huttes are usually
classed with the boles;[167] thus it was noted in 1297 that 'from each
load of black ore smelted at the huttes and boles there come 3½ feet of
silver-lead, each foot containing 70 lbs. of lead, each pound weighing
25s. sterling. And from a load of black ore smelted by the mill furnace
come 3 feet of silver-lead. And from a load of white ore smelted by
the furnace or elsewhere come 1½ feet of silver-lead. Moreover a pound
of lead made from black ore smelted by the boles and huttes and by
their furnaces yields 2 dwt. of silver; a pound of lead from black ore
smelted by the mill furnace yields 3 dwt. of silver; and a pound made
from white ore 1½ dwt.' In the same way the 'black work' or slag of
both boles and huttes were reworked at the furnaces.[168] A possible
hint is found in the fact that large quantities of refined lead had to
be put into the hutte when it was first lit,'as the huttes cannot burn
ore or smelt lead without the addition of sufficient melted lead at the
start to roast (_coquenda_) the ore in the lead so added.'[169] This
certainly suggests some sort of cupellation furnaces. Yet another type
of furnace was the 'turn-hearth' used in the Mendips; the construction
of this, again, is obscure, but it seems to have derived its name from
some portion of the hearth being movable and adjustable to changing
winds, while it would seem that the ordinary furnace could only be used
when the wind blew from a particular quarter.[170] There are references
in 1302 to a '_fornellus versatilis_' used in the Devon mines, and one
entry speaks of making the furnace 'upon the turning machine' (_super
ingenium versatile_).[171]

The bolers and furnacemen, who were paid about 12d. to 16d. a week,
their assistants receiving about half those amounts, having cast the
lead into pigs and stamped it, handed it over to the wardens of the
mine. The next process was the refining of the silver from the lead
by cupellation. When an alloy of silver and lead is melted on an open
hearth with free access of air, the lead is oxidized and, in the form
of litharge, can be removed either by skimming it off or by absorption
by the porous body of the hearth, leaving the silver in a more or less
pure form. By adding more lead and repeating the process the silver can
be further refined. In England it seems to have been usual to remove
the litharge by absorption; in the case of the Romano-British refinery
at Silchester,[172] the absorbent material used was bone ash, but in
the medieval refineries at the Devon mines charred 'tan turves,'[173]
or refuse blocks of oak bark from the tanneries, were used, and
probably the same material was used in Derbyshire, the southern mines
being largely worked by Derbyshire miners. A thick bed of this tan-ash
was made with a dished hollow in the middle, in which was placed the
fuel and the lead; the hearth was then fired and blast supplied from
the side: when the whole was melted the fire was raked aside and the
blast turned on to the upper surface of the molten metal, which was
thus rapidly oxidized and so refined.

But first, as soon as the mass of silver-lead was in a fluid state,
'before the ash has absorbed any of the lead, the lead is to be stirred
and mixed so that it is of equal quality throughout, and a quantity of
the lead amounting to about 6s. weight shall be taken out, and this
shall be divided into two parts, half being given to the refiner,
ticketed with his name, and the date and sealed by the wardens, and
the other half shall be assayed by the king's assayer in the presence
of the wardens and of the refiner, and the refiner shall answer for
the whole of that refining at the rate of the assay, as nearly as is
reasonable, having regard to the fact that there is greater waste and
loss in the big operation of refining than in the assay. And when the
silver has been fully refined it shall be given by the refiners to the
wardens for a tally (or receipt) of the weight, so that there shall
be neither suspicion nor deceit on either side.... And the lead that
remains in the ash after the refining shall be resmelted at a suitable
time.'[174] These ordinances of 1297, just quoted, arranged for there
being five skilled refiners at the Devon mines, and the account rolls
show that they received from 18d. to 2s. a week.

The silver seems to have been cast into plates or ingots varying from
ten to twenty pounds in weight and value (for the monetary pound was
simply the pound weight of standard silver). Its purity probably
varied, for while in 1296 the pound of refined silver was mixed with
14d. of alloy to bring it to the standard,[175] a few years later
silver weighing £132, 5s. was worth only £131, 13s. 7¼d. in coined
money,[176] and 370 lbs. of silver sent up from Martinstowe in 1294 had
to be further refined in London before it could be made into silver
vessels for the Countess of Barre.[177] In the case of the lead we
have the usual medieval complexity of weights. An early entry[178]
records that 'a carretate (or cartload) of lead of the Peak contains
24 fotinels, each of 70 lbs., and the fotinel contains 14 cuts[179] of
5 lbs. A carretate of London is larger by 420 lbs.' The London weight
appears to have gained the day, as a later entry gives 13½ lbs. to a
stone, 6 stones to a foot, and 30 feet (or 2430 lbs.) to a carretate
'according to the weight of the Peak.'[180] In Devon we find in 1297
carretates of 24 feet and 32 feet in use simultaneously, the foot being
70 lbs. here as in Derbyshire.[181]

In no other part of England had the lead-mining industry so continuous
a history of steady prosperity as in Derbyshire. The Devon mines
seem to have been richer and more productive during a short period,
but the half century, 1290-1340 practically covers the period of
their boom. During the five years, 1292-1297, these mines produced
£4046 of silver, and about £360 worth of lead; next year the silver
amounted to £1450. Then in April 1299 the king leased the mines to the
Friscobaldi, Italian merchants and money-lenders, with whom he had many
dealings.[182] They agreed to pay 13s. 4d. a load for the ore, but
after about a year, during which time they drew some 3600 loads of
ore,[183] they found that they were losing heavily, the ore not being
worth more than 10s. a load, and the costs of working being higher
than they had expected.[184] The mines, however, continued to yield
well when worked by the king for his own benefit, as much as £1773
of silver and £180 from lead being obtained in 1305: this, however,
seems to have been the highwater mark, the yield for 1347 being only
£70.[185] After this the mines were let to private adventurers from
time to time; but such records as we have do not suggest that many
fortunes were made from them: in 1426 the yield for the previous two
and a half years had been 39 ounces of silver,[186] for the year 1442
it was £17,[187] but for the six years, 1445-51, the average output
rose to 4000 ounces.[188] At the beginning of the boom, in 1295, it
was found necessary to recruit labour from the older lead-mining
districts, and commissioners were appointed to select miners for Devon
from Cheshire, Earl Warenne's liberty of Bromfield in Shropshire, the
Peak, Gloucester, Somerset, and Dorset.[189] The ordinances of 1297
stipulated for 150 miners from the Peak, and an equal number of local
men from Devon and Cornwall, though the accounts show that there were
that year 384 miners from the Peak, and 35 from Wales.[190] On the
other hand, in 1296, while we have over 300 miners coming from the
Peak, a twelve days' journey, we also find four picked men sent from
Devon to the king's court, and thence to Ireland to prospect on the
king's behalf.[191]

The prosperity of the Devon mines caused an increase of activity in
those of Somerset, where a number of fresh strikes were reported
during the early years of the fourteenth century, about one of which
an optimistic lead reeve wrote to the Bishop of Bath and Wells as

'Know, my lord, that your workmen have found a splendid mine[193] of
lead on the Mendips to the east of Priddy, and one that can be opened
up with no trouble, being only five or six feet below the ground. And
since these workmen are so often thieves, craftily separating the
silver from the lead, stealthily taking it away, and when they have
collected a quantity fleeing like thieves and deserting their work,
as has frequently happened in times past, therefore your bailiffs are
causing the ore to be carried to your court of Wookey where there is
a furnace built at which the workmen smelt the ore under supervision
of certain persons appointed by your steward. And as the steward,
bailiffs, and workmen consider that there is a great deal of silver
in the lead, on account of its whiteness and sonority, they beg that
you will send them as soon as possible a good and faithful workman
upon whom they can rely. I have seen the first piece of lead smelted
there, of great size and weight, which when it is struck rings almost
like silver, wherefore I agree with the others that if it is faithfully
worked the business should prove of immense value to yourself and to
the neighbourhood, and if a reliable workman is obtained I think that
it would be expedient to smelt the ore where it is dug, on account of
the labour of carrying so heavy material such a distance. The ore is in
grains like sand.'

There is no evidence that this mine fulfilled the sanguine expectations
of its discoverers, but about the same time, in 1314, we find Herman
de Alemannia and other adventurers working a mine in Brushford, near
Dulverton.[194] The Germans were for many centuries the most skilled
miners, and English mining owes much to their enterprise. As an
instance of their greater skill we may take the case of Thomas de
Alemaigne, silver finer,[195] who being out of work petitioned the king
to grant him the refuse and slag (_les aftirwas et les remisailles_)
thrown aside at the mines in Devonshire, which had been refined so
far as those at the mines could refine them: no one else would touch
them, so the king would get no gain unless he granted them to Thomas,
who was willing to pay 20s. a year for the right to rework them. This
same Thomas de Alemaigne was appointed in 1324 to dig, cleanse, and
examine the king's mines in Cumberland and Westmoreland.[196] Probably
these mines had not been worked for some time previous, as in 1292
the total issues of the Alston mines for the last fourteen years were
said to have been £4, 0s. 2d., possibly owing to the absence of fuel,
which is given as the reason for an iron mine there being worth only
15s. a year.[197] Later, in 1359, Tilman de Cologne was farming the
Alston mines, and in 1475, as a result apparently of a report by George
Willarby[198] that there were in the north of England three notable
mines, one containing 27 lbs. of silver to the fodder of lead with a
vein half a rod broad, another 18 lbs. with a vein five rods broad, and
the third 4 lbs. with a vein 1¼ rods broad, the mines of Blaunchlond in
Northumberland, Fletchers in Alston, Keswick in Cumberland, and also
the copper mine near Richmond, were granted for fifteen years to the
Duke of Gloucester, the Earl of Northumberland, William Goderswyk, and
John Marchall.[199] The two noblemen were presumably sleeping partners,
and appear to have abandoned the arrangement, as soon afterwards, in
1478, William Goderswyk, Henry Van Orel, Arnold van Anne, and Albert
Millyng of Cologne, and Dederic van Riswyk of England, received a
grant for ten years of all mines of gold, silver, copper, and lead in
Northumberland, Cumberland, and Westmoreland, paying one-fifteenth of
the profits.[200]

Although gold is mentioned in this last entry and in a number of other
grants of mines in the fifteenth century, and though Galias de Lune
and his partners were licensed in 1462 to dig ores containing gold in
Gloucestershire and Somerset,[201] gold does not appear to have been
worked in paying quantities in England. In 1325 John de Wylwringword
was sent down to the mines of Devon and Cornwall to seek for gold:
he obtained from the Devon mines 22 dwt., of which he refined 3 dwt.
at Exeter; this yielded 2½ dwt. of pure gold.[202] The remainder was
sent up to the Exchequer and eventually refined at York; but this is
almost the only note we have of gold being found, though no doubt small
quantities were found from time to time in the Cornish stream tinworks.

In 1545 one St. Clere declared that certain gold called 'gold hoppes
and gold oore' in every stream tinwork in Devon and Cornwall was by
ignorance of the tinners molten with the tin, and so conveyed abroad;
certain persons were appointed to test his statement.[203]



Tin mining claims an antiquity unsurpassed by any other industry in
this country, but with what degree of justice may well be doubted. The
claim of the western promontory of Britain, later known as Cornwall
and Devon, to be the Cassiterides or Tin Islands whence the Phœnicians
obtained their stores of that metal at least five hundred years before
the Christian era rests upon rather shadowy grounds.[204] Diodorus
Siculus, who wrote about B.C. 30, is the first writer definitely to
connect Britain with the tin trade, and his statements appear to be
based rather upon a doubtful understanding of earlier topographers than
upon actual knowledge. According to him the tin was produced in the
promontory of 'Bolerium' and brought to the island of 'Ictis,' whence
it was transported to Gaul. If 'Bolerium' is Cornwall, then there is no
reason to doubt that 'Ictis' is 'Insula Vectis,' or the Isle of Wight,
which was at that date still connected to the mainland by a narrow
ridge of rock, covered at highwater, but dry at low water, as 'Ictis'
is said to have been.[205] It is certainly strange, if an ancient
and well-established trade in tin really existed in Britain when the
Romans came over, that that race, with its keen eye for metallic
wealth, should have made no use of the tin mines of Cornwall. Yet
there is no reference to these mines in the literature of the period
of the Roman occupation, nor are there traces of anything approaching
an occupation of Cornwall by the Romans, who appear to have ignored
this corner of Britain completely. After the departure of the Romans,
and before the Saxons conquered this district, which did not happen
till the middle of the tenth century, there is some evidence of tin
being worked here, as Cornish tin is said to have been carried over to
France in the seventh century, and in a life of St. John of Alexandria,
who died in 616, there is a story of an Alexandrian galley coming to
Britain for tin.[206] That the Saxons worked the tin seems probable
from the discovery of Saxon remains in the St. Austell tin grounds and
elsewhere,[207] but the industry can hardly have been of any great
importance at the time of the Norman Conquest, as there is no reference
to it in the Domesday Survey.

While the history of tin mining in Britain prior to the middle of the
twelfth century is problematical, there is from that time onwards an
immense mass of material bearing upon the subject. This material has
been patiently examined by Mr. George Randall Lewis, and summarised in
his work on _The Stannaries_,[208] a book so full and complete that I
have saved myself much labour by basing this chapter almost entirely
upon it.

There are, as might be expected, many analogies between the mining
of tin and the mining of lead. The processes were very similar, and
the laws governing the workers had much in common, but it is in the
case of the Stannaries that we find the full development of the 'free
miner,' so far as England is concerned. Certain initial differences in
the methods employed are observable owing to the form in which tin is
obtained. Tin, like other metals, exists in veins or lodes embedded in
the rock at various depths; where these veins outcrop on the banks of
a stream they are broken up by the action of the water and climatic
variations, the resultant pile of stanniferous boulders being known as
'shode'; the waters of the stream constantly wear away small pieces of
the tin ore and carry it downwards until, owing to its heavy specific
gravity, the tin sinks, forming a deposit in the bed of the stream
which may sometimes be as much as twenty feet thick. It was this third
class of alluvial tin which was alone worked in prehistoric and early
medieval days. This might safely be assumed, but rather remarkable
confirmation is obtained from an account of tin worked for Edmund of
Cornwall in 1297. From this it appears that twenty-eight and a half
'foot-fates' of ore produced a thousand-weight (1200 lbs.) of 'white
tin,' the proportion corresponding pretty closely with those—three
'foot-fates' of ore to yield 105 lbs. of metal—given in the sixteenth
century by Thomas Beare for alluvial or 'stream' tin, which was far
richer than mine tin.[209] It cannot have been very long before the
miners realised that the stream tin was carried down by the water, and
started to search for its source. The 'shode,' or boulder tin, must
therefore have been worked almost as early as the alluvial deposits,
and the final stage was the working of the 'lode.' In this lode mining
the first workings were no doubt shallow trenches and confined to
places where the ore lay close to the surface; a somewhat greater
depth was obtained by 'shamelling,' the trench being carried down in
stages, a 'shamell' or platform being left at each stage at the height
to which the miner could throw his ore; finally came the deep shaft
with galleries. But here, as in all mining, the question of drainage
came in. Where the workings were quite shallow the water could be baled
out with wooden bowls, or a 'level,' or deep ditch, could be dug. For
greater depths the adit, or drainage gallery (see above, p. 50), was
available, and although Mr. Lewis[210] cannot find any instance of the
use of the adit in tin mining before the seventeenth century, it does
not seem reasonable to doubt that it was in use much earlier. Exactly
when pumps and other draining machines were introduced into the tin
mines is not clear, but probably they were little used during our
medieval period, when few of the mines were of any great depth.[211]

The primitive miner, when he had got his ore with the aid of his simple
tools, a wooden shovel and a pick, also in earliest times of wood,
but later of iron, constructed a rough hearth of stones on which he
kindled a fire. When it was burning strongly he cast in his ore and
afterwards collected the molten tin from the ashes. The next stage was
to construct a regular furnace, exactly similar in type to the boles
or furnaces used for lead-melting (see above, p. 51). These furnaces
were enclosed in a building, the 'blowing-house,' in early times a
rough thatched shanty, which was burnt from time to time to obtain
the metallic dust which had lodged in the thatch, but afterwards more
substantial. The cost of a 'melting howse' (80 feet by 20 feet) built
at Larian in Cornwall by Burcord Crangs, a German, in the time of Queen
Mary, was about £300, composed as follows:[212]—

  For the ryddyng, clensing and leveling of
  the ground for setting of the foundacon
  therof                                        £23  6 8

  For making foundacon of the walls and
  the poynyons of the meltyng howse             120  0 0

  For making of the audit[213] to build the
  fornas and meltyng chymney upon                30  0 0

  For tymbering and covering the howse
  with esclattes                                 50  0 0

  For dores, windows, locks, and barres           6  0 0

  The whele, exultree and the stampers           10  0 0

  For 4 paire of grete bellowes wt their
  geames and other necessaryes                   20  0 0

  For makyng of the Colehouse                    15  0 0

  For makyng of the Rostingehowse[214]           20  0 0

  For makyng of the lete and dyke comyng
  to the meltynghowse                            66  0 0

  For the hatt and the crane                     20  0 0

The lumps of ore were first broken up with hammers or in a mill;
the powdered ore was then washed to free it as far as possible from
earthy impurities. Sometimes this was done with a 'vanne,' or shovel,
the heavy ore remaining at the point of the shovel and the lighter
impurities being washed away. An elaborate process was also used, in
which the water containing the powdered ore was allowed to run over
pieces of turf, the metallic portion sinking and becoming entangled
in the fibres. The usual method, however, was by means of troughs
or 'buddles.' This washing was not only a necessary preliminary to
the smelting, but had an economic importance, as it was at the wash
that the ore was divided when a claim was worked by partners, and the
tribute or share due to the lord of the soil was apportioned; it was
also, towards the end of the medieval period, the only place where the
ore might be bought by dealers.[215] To prevent fraud it was therefore
enacted that due notice should be given of washes, and no secret
buddles should be used.

When we first get any details of tin-working, in 1198, it was usual
for the tin to be smelted twice, the first being a rough process
performed near the tinfield, but the second, or refining, being only
permitted at special places and in the presence of the officers of the
stannaries. The tin from the first smelting had to be stamped by the
royal officers within two weeks of smelting, a toll being paid to the
king at the same time of 2s. 6d. per thousand-weight in Devon, and of
5s. in Cornwall. Moreover, by the regulations of 1198, within thirteen
weeks the tin had to be resmelted and again stamped, this time paying
a tax of one mark.[216] The double smelting possibly ceased before the
end of the thirteenth century. In any case the fiscal arrangement was
altered, and in 1302, not long after the stannaries had reverted to
the Crown, after being in the hands of the Earls of Cornwall from 1231
to 1300, we find the stampage dues consolidated into a single coinage
duty. Under this system of coinage all the tin smelted had to be sent
to certain specified towns, those for Cornwall being Bodmin, Liskeard,
Lostwithiel, Helston, and Truro; and for Devon, Chagford, Tavistock,
Plympton, and Ashburton. Here the tin remained until the two yearly
visits of the coinage officials, at Michaelmas and Midsummer, when
each block, weighing roughly 200 to 300 lbs., was assayed, weighed,
and taxed: it was then stamped and might be sold. To prevent fraud
an elaborate system of marking was gradually introduced during the
sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, and the use of private marks by
the owners of the blowing-houses was probably of much earlier origin.
The use of these marks was designed not only to protect the merchant,
but also to act as a check on smuggling, of which an immense amount
undoubtedly went on.[217]

One result of the coinage system, by which tin might not be sold until
stamped, and could only be stamped twice a year, was that the smaller
tin-workers inevitably fell into the hands of the capitalists. The
small independent tinner, with no reserve of capital to draw upon,
had almost always to pledge his tin in advance to the adventurers
and tin-dealers, and as a result he was often worse off with his
theoretical independence than he would have been as a recognised
wage-labourer. The wage work system must have been introduced into the
stannaries at quite an early period. Even in 1237 there are references
to servants who worked the mines for the tinners.[218] In 1342 certain
of the wealthier Cornish tinners endeavoured to force their poorer
brethren to work for them at a penny a day, when they had been working
tin worth 20d. or more daily, and it is said that Abraham the tinner in
1357 was actually employing three hundred persons on his works. Side
by side with these hired workmen were the independent tinners, working
either separately or, more usually in partnerships; but from the small
amounts which many of these tinners presented for coinage, Mr. Lewis
has concluded that they may have been only partly dependent upon their
mining.[219] There is, however, the complication that the small amounts
presented may in part have been due to their having sold their ore to
the larger dealers, but it is clear that some of the tinners did also
carry on farming.

While the economic position of the smaller tinners must often have
been little, if at all, superior to that of ordinary labourers, their
political position was remarkable. They constituted a state within
a state; the free miner 'paid taxes not as an Englishman, but as a
miner. His law was not the law of the realm, but that of his mine. He
obeyed the king only when his orders were communicated through the
warden of the mines, and even then so long only as he respected the
mining law. His courts were the mine courts, his parliament the mine
parliament.'[220] The tinner was a free man and could not be subjected
to the system of villeinage. He had the right of prospecting anywhere
within the two counties, except in churchyards, highways, and gardens,
and might 'bound' or stake out a claim by the simple process of cutting
shallow holes and making piles of turf at the four corners of his
claim, and such claim would be his absolute property provided that he
worked it (the exact amount of work necessary to retain a claim varied
in different places and at different periods). For his claim he paid
to the lord of the land, whether it were the king or a private lord,
a certain tribute of ore, usually the tenth or the fifteenth portion.
He had, moreover, the right to divert streams, either to obtain water
for washing his ore, or to enable him to dig in the bed of the stream,
and the important privilege of compelling landowners to sell him fuel
for his furnace. Further, he had his own courts, and was under the
sole jurisdiction of the warden-officers of the stannaries. Each
stannary, of which there were five in Cornwall and four in Devon,
had its own court, presided over by a steward, and no tinner might
plead or be impleaded outside his court, from which the appeal lay
to the warden, or in practice to the vice-warden. How and when these
privileges were obtained must remain a matter for speculation, but
they can be traced when William de Wrotham was appointed warden in
1198, and were definitely confirmed to the tinners by King John in
1201. By development, apparently, from the two yearly great courts
of the stannaries, arose the 'stannary parliaments.' The parliament
for Cornwall consisted of twenty-four members, six being nominated
by the mayor and council of each of the four towns of Lostwithiel,
Launceston, Truro, and Helston; that of Devon contained ninety-six
members, twenty-four from each of the stannaries. Those parliaments
were summoned, through the lord warden, by the Duke of Cornwall,
in whom the supreme control of the stannaries was vested from 1338
onwards, and had power not only to legislate for the stannaries, but
to veto any national legislation which infringed their privileges.
When the parliaments originated is not known, but they were certainly
established before the beginning of the sixteenth century, prior to
which date all records of their proceedings are lost.

With all these privileges, to which may be added exemption from
ordinary taxation and military service, though the tinners were
liable to be taxed separately and enrolled for service under their
own officers, it was natural that the exact definition of a tinner
should have given rise to much dispute. On the one hand, it was
argued that these exemptions and privileges applied only to working
tinners actually employed in getting ore; on the other, the tin
dealers, blowers, and owners of blowing-houses claimed to be included.
Eventually the larger definition was accepted, and, indeed, it was
almost entirely from the capitalist section of the industry that the
parliaments were elected, from the sixteenth century, if not earlier.

It is rather remarkable that when the stannaries first come into
evidence, in the reign of Henry II., the chief centre of production
appears to have been Devon rather than Cornwall.[221] So far as can be
estimated the output during this reign rose gradually from about 70
tons in 1156 to about 350 in 1171. Richard I., with his constant need
of money, reorganised the stannaries in 1198, and at the beginning of
John's reign the output was between 400 and 450 tons. The issue of
the charter to the stannaries in 1201 does not seem to have had any
immediate effect on the industry, but about ten years later there was
increased activity, the output rising in 1214 to 600 tons.[222] During
the early years of Henry III. the tin revenues were farmed out, and
no details are available either for these years, or from the period
1225-1300, during which time the stannaries were in the hands of the
Earls of Cornwall. Two things only are clear, that the total output
had fallen off, and that Cornwall had now far outstripped Devon. The
grant of a charter confirming the privileges of the stannaries in 1305
seems to have marked the beginning of a more prosperous era, and by
1337 the output had reached 700 tons. The Black Death, however, in 1350
put an end to this prosperity, and with the exception of a boom during
the reign of Henry IV. tinning did not recover until just at the end
of our medieval period. Even at its worst, however, the industry was a
source of considerable revenue, the coinage duties[223] never falling
below £1000, and amounting in 1337 and 1400 to over £3000, in addition
to which there were other smaller payments and perquisites.[224] The
royal privileges of pre-emption was also of value to needy kings who
frequently availed themselves of it to grant this pre-emption, or
virtual monopoly, to wealthy foreign merchants and other money-lenders
in return for substantial loans.

Before leaving the subject of the tin mines of Cornwall and Devon, it
is perhaps worth while noting that there is virtually no documentary
evidence of the working of the copper deposits of Cornwall prior to the
late sixteenth century, and it would seem that most of the copper used
in medieval England must have been imported.



Stone-quarrying is an industry to which the references in medieval
records are more numerous than enlightening. It would be easy to fill
pages with a list of casual references to the working of quarries
in all parts of England, and after struggling through the list the
reader would know that stone was dug in quite a lot of places at
different times, which he might have assumed without the documentary
evidence. It is natural that when a castle, an abbey, a church, or
other stone building is to be erected the stone, whose cost lies mainly
in transport, should be obtained from the nearest possible source.
Founders of monasteries frequently made grants either of existing
quarries or of the right to dig stone for the monastic buildings, and
the discovery of a bed of suitable stone close to the site selected
for the Conqueror's votive abbey of Battle was so opportune as to be
deemed a miracle.[225] When a monastery was founded in a district where
stone could not be found, it was almost essential that its supplies
should be drawn if possible from some place from which the stone could
be carried by water, and it was no doubt the position of Barnack
between the Welland and the Nene that made its quarries so important
to the monks of the Fenland.[226] The abbeys of Peterborough, Ramsey,
Crowland, Bury St. Edmund and Sawtry all held quarries in Barnack and
quarrelled amongst themselves over their respective rights. The monks
of Sawtry, for instance, had made a canal for carrying stone to their
abbey by way of Wittlesea Mere by permission of the abbey of Ramsey, a
permission which they seem to have abused, as in 1192 orders were given
to block all their lodes except the main one leading to Sawtry, and
they had to promise to put up no buildings except one rest house for
the men on their stone barges.[227]

For York Minster[228] stone was brought from the quarries of
Thevesdale, Huddleston, and Tadcaster down the Wharfe, and from
Stapleton down the Aire into the Ouse, and so up to St. Leonard's
wharf, whence it was carried on sleds to the mason's yard. Westminster
and London were mainly supplied from Surrey, from the Reigate and
Chaldon quarries, and Kent, from the Maidstone district. The tough
'Kentish rag,' which was used by the Romans for the walls of London,
was much in demand for the rougher masonry,[229] and in a contract
for building a wharf by the Tower in 1389, it was stipulated that the
core of the walls should be of 'raggs,' and the facing of 'assheler
de Kent.'[230] The Reigate stone, on the other hand, was of superior
quality and more suited for fine work, and we find it constantly used
for images, carved niches, and window tracery.[231]

The most accessible stone not always being the most suitable for the
varying requirements of architecture, it was necessary to find other
stone possessing the desired qualities, and certain quarries at an
early date acquired renown. Setting aside the famous Norman quarries
of Caen, whose stone appears in greater or less quantities in hundreds
of buildings and of records, there are a number of English quarries
of more than local repute in medieval times. Such were the quarries
of Beer in Devonshire, from whose labyrinthine galleries stone was
carried to Rochester in 1367,[232] to St. Stephen's Westminster in
1362,[233] and elsewhere. The fine limestone, later known as Bath
Stone, was quarried to a large extent at Haslebury in Box in Wiltshire,
from which place it was sent in 1221 to the royal palace at Winchester
for the columns of the hall and for chimney hoods,[234] Richard Sired
receiving 23s. 4d. for cutting 105 blocks of stone in the quarry of
Hesalburi.[235] For these same works at Winchester much stone was
brought from the Hampshire quarry of Selebourne, and from the better
known quarries of the Isle of Wight, while a stone-cutter was sent to
procure material from the quarry of Corfe. This latter was no doubt
the same as the 'hard stone of Corfe,' bought for Westminster in
1278.[236] With Corfe and Purbeck is associated Portland stone, which
attained its greatest fame in the hands of Wren after the Fire of
London, but was already appreciated in the fourteenth century, when
it was used in Exeter Cathedral and at Westminster.[237] Further east
Sussex possessed a number of quarries of local importance,[238] and the
quarry of green sandstone at Eastbourne, from which the great Roman
walls of Pevensey and the medieval castle within them were alike built,
probably provided the '28 stones of Burne, worked for windows of the
vault under the chapel' at Shene in 1441.[239] Another Sussex quarry,
that of Fairlight, near Hastings, supplied large quantities of stone
for Rochester Castle in 1366 and 1367.[240] The list of stone brought
in the latter year at Rochester is of interest as showing the various
sources from which it was derived.[241] There were bought 55 tons of
Beer freestone at prices varying from 9s. to 10s. the ton,[242] 62 tons
of Caen stone at 9s., 45 tons of Stapleton freestone[243] at 8s., 44
tons of Reigate stone at 6s., 195 tons of freestone from Fairlight at
3s. 4d., 1850 tons of rag from Maidstone at 40s. the hundred tons, and
a large quantity[244] of worked stone from Boughton Mounchelsea.

The Kentish quarries seem to have been especially favoured for the
manufacture of the stone balls flung by the royal artillery, in early
days by mangonels, balistae, and other forms of catapults, and in later
days by guns. Thus in 1342 the sheriff of Kent accounted for £13, 10s.
spent on 300 stones dug in the quarry of Folkestone and drawn out of
the sea in various places, and afterwards cut and hewn into round
balls for the king's machines; one hundred weighing 600 lbs. each, and
the same number 500 lbs. and 400 lbs. respectively; and a further £7,
10s. for another 300 stone balls of various weights.[245] It is true
that some years earlier, in 1333, similar balls had been obtained in
Yorkshire, the sheriff buying 19 damlades[246] and 3 tons of stone
in the quarry of Tadcaster, and setting 37 masons to work, the result
being 606 stone balls weighing 9 damlades,[247] but casual references
point to Kent as the great centre of manufacture. In 1418 as many as
7000 such balls were ordered to be made at Maidstone and elsewhere, and
the Maidstone quarries were still turning out stone shot for bombards
during the early years of Henry VIII.[248]

So far we have been dealing with what may be called block stone, but
there were also in many parts of the country stones that from the
ease with which they could be split into thin slabs were suitable for
roofing purposes. How early, and to what extent the true slates of
Cornwall and Devon were worked it is difficult to say, but in 1296,
when certain buildings were put up for the miners at Martinestowe
23,000 'sclattes' were quarried at Birlond, and another 10,000 at
'Hassal.'[249] For the roofing of buildings at Restormel in Cornwall
in 1343 slates were employed, 19,500 being bought 'between Golant and
Fowey,' at 11d. the thousand, and 85,500 dug in the quarry of Bodmatgan
at a cost of 6d. the thousand.[250] So also in 1385, at Lostwithiel,
it is probable that the 'tiles,' of which 25,400 were bought 'in the
quarry' at 3s. 4d. the thousand were true slates.[251] But besides the
real slates, which in their modern uniformity of perfection render so
many towns hideous, there were many quarries of stone slates, of which
the most famous were at Collyweston in Northants.[252] The Collyweston
stone after being exposed to the influence of frost could easily be
split into thin slabs,[253] and seem to have been used for roofing
purposes as early as the times of the Romans. During the medieval
period there are numerous references to these Collyweston slates, and
about the end of the fourteenth century they seem to have fetched from
6s. to 8s. the thousand.[254] Other similar quarries of more than local
fame were situated round Horsham in Sussex,[255] and Horsham slates
continued in demand from early days until the diminished solidity
of house construction made a less weighty, and incidentally less
picturesque, material requisite for roofing.

The work of quarrying stone counted as unskilled labour, and the rate
of pay of quarriers is almost always that of the ordinary labourer. At
Martinstow in 1296, men 'breaking stone in the quarry' received 1½d. to
2d. a day, and women, always the cheapest form of labour, 1d. a day
for carrying the stones from the quarry.[256] The Windsor accounts for
1368 show quarriers at Bisham (Bustesham) receiving 3½d. a day, and
one, no doubt the foreman, 4d., while 65,000 blocks of stone were cut
at 'Colingle' at 10s. the thousand, and 3500 at Stoneden at 20s.[257]
Those employed upon shaping the rough blocks were naturally paid at
a higher rate, and in 1333, while the quarriers at Tadcaster were
paid 1s. 4d. a week, the masons employed there in making stone balls
earned 2s. 6d., and their foremen 3s. a week.[258] Often, however,
the payment was by piece work, and in the case of the stone wrought
at Boughton Monchelsea in 1366 for Rochester Castle, we have a list
of the rates of payment: 'rough ashlar' worked at 10s. the hundred,
'parpainassheler'—for mullions—cut to pattern 18s. the hundred, newel
pieces 12d. each, jambs 3d. the foot, 'scu' or bevelled stones 2d. the
foot, voussoirs (_vausur_) 5d. the foot, and so on.[259] The tools used
were of a simple nature; the inventory of tools at Stapleton quarry
in 1400[260] shows a number of iron wedges, iron rods, 'gavelokes' or
crowbars, iron hammers, 'pulyng axes,'[261] 'brocheaxes' and shovels.

So far we have been dealing with stone as a building material, but
there were two varieties of stone worked in England in medieval times
whose value was artistic rather than utilitarian. These were marble
and alabaster. PURBECK MARBLE,[262] a dark shell conglomerate capable
of receiving a very high polish, came into fashion towards the end
of the twelfth century, and continued in great demand for some two
hundred years. Not only was it used in 1205 at Chichester Cathedral,
but it would seem that some thirty years earlier it was sent to Dublin
and to Durham. All the evidence goes to show that the marble was not
only quarried at Purbeck, but worked into columns and carved upon
the spot, and it is probable that most, if not all, of the scores of
marble effigies which still remain in churches, such as the figures of
knights in the Temple Church and the tomb of King John at Worcester,
were carved by members of the Purbeck school[263] and usually at the
quarries, though in some cases it would seem that the carver was called
upon to do his work at the place where it was to be used, and under
the eye of his patron. But however much we may admire the execution
of these Purbeck effigies, we must not hastily assume that they bear
any particular resemblance to the persons whom they commemorate;
for although the Purbeck carvers were no doubt capable of executing
portrait sculpture, a large proportion of their work was undoubtedly
conventional. Thus in 1253 we find Henry III. ordering the sheriff of
Dorset to cause 'an image of a queen' to be cut in marble and carried
to the nunnery of Tarrant Keynston, there to be placed over the tomb of
his sister, the late Queen of Scots.[264]

Corfe was the great centre of the Purbeck marble industry. William of
Corfe who executed the tomb of 'Henry the King's son,' at Westminster
in 1273,[265] was probably William le Blund, brother of Robert le
Blund, also called Robert of Corfe, who supplied marble for the Eleanor
crosses at Waltham, Northampton, and Lincoln; and one Adam of Corfe
settled in London early in the fourteenth century, and died there
in 1331. This Adam 'the marbler' seems to have carried out several
large contracts, including the paving of St. Paul's, and in 1324
supplied great quantities of marble for the columns of St. Stephen's,
Westminster, at 6d. the foot.[266] The same price was paid in 1333 for
similar columns bought from Richard Canon,[267] one of a family which
for a century and a half played a prominent part as carvers and marble
merchants, particularly in connection with Exeter Cathedral.

By the sixteenth century, and probably for some time earlier, the
'Marblers and Stone Cutters of Purbeck' had formed themselves into
a company. By their rules the industry was restricted to freemen
of the company, and regulations were laid down as to the number of
apprentices that might be employed. These apprentices, in turn, could
become freemen at the end of seven years upon payment to the court
held at Corfe Castle on Shrove Tuesday of 6s. 8d. and the render of
a penny loaf and two pots of beer. The wives of freemen were also
allowed to join the company on payment of 1s., and in that case might
carry on the trade, with the assistance of an apprentice, after their
husband's death. At the time, however, that this company was formed,
it is probable that the greater part of their business was concerned
with building stone, as the marble had gone out of fashion and been
largely superseded by alabaster in the fifteenth century for sepulchral

ALABASTER appears to have been dug in the neighbourhood of Tutbury
in very early times, some of the Norman mouldings of the west door of
Tutbury church being carved in this material.[268] It is in the same
neighbourhood, at Hanbury, that the earliest known sepulchral image
in alabaster is to be found: this dates from the early years of the
fourteenth century, but it was not until the middle of that century
that the vogue of alabaster began. From 1360 onwards there exists a
magnificent series of alabaster monuments which bear striking testimony
to the skill of the medieval English carvers,[269] and it is clear
from records and the evidence of such fragments as have survived the
triple iconoclasm of Reformers, Puritans, and Churchwardens that these
monuments found worthy companions in the statues and carved reredoses
scattered throughout the churches of England.[270] One of the finest
of these reredoses must have been the 'table of alabaster' bought in
1367 for the high altar of St. George's, Windsor. For this the enormous
sum of £200 (more than £3000 of modern money) was paid to Peter Mason
of Nottingham, while some idea of its size may be gathered from the
fact that it took ten carts, each with eight horses, to bring it from
Nottingham to Windsor, the journey occupying seventeen days.[271]

All the evidence points to Nottingham having been the great centre of
the industry, the material being brought from the Derbyshire quarries
of Chellaston. The stone and the workmanship alike found favour
outside this country, and in 1414, when the abbot of Fécamp required
alabaster he sent his mason, Alexander de Berneval, to England to
procure it; and it was from Thomas Prentis of Chellaston that the
stone was bought.[272] The alabaster tomb of John, Duke of Bretagne,
which was erected in Nantes Cathedral in 1408, was made in England by
Thomas Colyn, Thomas Holewell, and Thomas Poppehowe,[273] but it is not
certain that they belonged to Nottingham. Various customs accounts[274]
show that carved alabaster figures were often exported to the
Continent, and Mr. Hope has shown that a number of carvings still to
be seen in the churches of France, and even of Iceland,[275] have the
green background, with circular groups of red and white spots, peculiar
to the Nottingham school.[276]

Thomas Prentis, who is mentioned above, is found in 1419 in company
with Robert Sutton[277] covenanting to carve, paint, and gild the
elaborate and beautiful tomb of Ralph Green and his wife, which may
still be seen in Lowick Church, Northants, for a sum of £40. An
examination of this tomb makes it almost certain that the glorious
monuments of the Earl and Countess of Arundel at Arundel, Henry IV.
and Queen Joan at Canterbury, and the Earl of Westmoreland and his
two wives at Staindrop, were all from the same workshop. During the
last twenty years of the fifteenth and the first thirty years of the
sixteenth century, we have the names of a number of 'alablastermen'
and 'image-makers' in Nottingham,[278] Nicholas Hill in particular
being prominent as a manufacturer of the popular St. John the
Baptist heads,[279] and during the same period we find a number of
'alblasterers' at York.[280] At Burton-on-Trent, also, where Leland in
the sixteenth century mentions 'many marbellers working in alabaster,'
the trade was evidently established in 1481, when Robert Bocher and
Gilbert Twist were working for a number of religious houses; and it
still flourished there in 1581 and 1585, when Richard and Gabriel
Royley undertook contracts for elaborate tombs of alabaster,[281] but
for all practical purposes the English school of alabaster carvers
ceased to exist when the Reformation put an end to the demand for
images and carven tables.

The alabaster, or gypsum, when not suitable for carving, was still
valuable for conversion into plaster by burning, the finer varieties
yielding the so-called Plaster of Paris and the coarser the ordinary
builders' plaster. References to the actual burning of plaster seem
practically non-existent, but it is noteworthy that one of the places
from which Plaster of Paris was obtained for the works at York Minster
was Buttercrambe,[282] where there is a large deposit of gypsum
which probably furnished the York alabasterers with their material.
In the same way CHALK, though to some extent used for masonry, was
most in demand for conversion into lime. When building operations of
any importance were undertaken, it was usual to build a limekiln on
the spot for the burning of the lime required for mortar. In earlier
times the kiln seems to have taken the form of a pit, 'lymeputt' or, in
Latin, _puteus_, being the term usually employed, but in 1400 we find a
regular kiln (_torale_) built, 3300 bricks and 33 loads of clay being
purchased for the purpose.[283] Where lime was burnt commercially, that
is to say for sale and not merely for use on the spot, the kilns would
naturally be larger and more permanent, and a sixteenth-century account
of the erection of eight such kilns[284] at a place unnamed—probably
Calais—shows that each kiln was 20 feet high, with walls 10 feet thick,
and an average internal breadth of 10 feet, and cost over £450.

When wood was plentiful it was naturally employed for burning the lime,
and a presentment made in 1255 with regard to the forest of Wellington
mentions that the king's two limekilns (_rees calcis_) had devoured
500 oaks between them.[285] But it was soon found that pit coal was
the best fuel for the purpose, and it was constantly used from the end
of the thirteenth century onwards, as much as 1166 quarters of sea
coal being bought in 1278 for the kilns (_chauffornia_) in connection
with the work at the Tower.[286] For the most part, chalk and lime
required for work at London or Westminster was brought from Greenwich.
Kent has indeed always been one of the great centres of the trade, both
home and foreign, and in 1527,[287] to take but one instance, we find
six ships from Dutch ports taking out of Sandwich port chalk to the
value of £20.[288] In the chalk hills round Chislehurst labyrinthine
galleries of great extent bear witness to the flourishing state of
chalk-quarrying in this district in former times;[289] smaller quarries
of a similar type exist in the 'caverns' at Guildford. Kent, Surrey,
and Sussex[290] were indeed busily employed in quarrying chalk during
the medieval period, and for long afterwards, down to the present day.



The English craftsmen were renowned for their metal work from the days
of St. Dunstan downwards. St. Dunstan was the patron of the goldsmiths,
his image being one of the chief ornaments of their gild hall in
London, and a ring attributed to his workmanship was in the possession
of Edward I. in 1280,[291] while his tools, including the identical
tongs with which he pulled the devil by the nose, may still be seen
at Mayfield. Coming to later times and the less questionable evidence
of records, we may probably see in Otto the Goldsmith, whose name
occurs in the Domesday Survey of 1086, the progenitor of the family
of Fitz-Otho, king's goldsmiths and masters of the Mint from 1100 to
1300.[292] The names of many early goldsmiths[293] have survived, and
the beautiful candlestick given to St. Peter's Abbey at Gloucester in
1110, and now in the South Kensington Museum, is evidence of their
mastery of the art. The great religious houses were foremost patrons
of the craft, many of them, as the Abbey of St. Albans, numbering
amongst their inmates artists of great repute. The famous college of
Beverley included a goldsmith in its household,[294] but in 1292, when
it was determined to erect a new shrine for the relics of St. John of
Beverley, the chapter did not entrust the work to their own craftsman,
but sent up to London to the establishment of William Faringdon, the
greatest goldsmith of that time. The contract between his servant,
Roger of Faringdon, and the Chapter of Beverley is still extant.[295]
By it the chapter were to provide the necessary silver and gold; Roger
was to refine it, if needful, and to supply his own coals, quicksilver,
and other materials. The shrine was to be 5 ft. 6 in. long, 1 ft. 6 in.
broad, and of proportionate height: the design was to be architectural
in style, and the statuettes, the number and size of which were to be
at the discretion of the chapter, were to be of cunning and beautiful
work, the chapter reserving the right to reject any figure or ornament
and cause it to be remade. For his work Roger was to receive the weight
in silver of the shrine when completed, before gilding. No very general
rule can be laid down as to the proportion between the intrinsic value
or weight of metal and the cost of workmanship, but roughly in the case
of simple articles of plate the cost of manufacture may be set at
approximately half the weight. Thus in the case of the plate presented
by the city to the Black Prince on his return from Gascony in 1371[296]
we find six chargers, weight £14, 18s. 9d., amounting with the making
to £21, 7s. 2d.; twelve 'hanappes,' or handled cups, weight £8, 12s.,
amounting to £12, 7s. 7d.; and thirty saltcellars, weighing £15, 6s.
2d., amounting to £21, 17s. 8d. The charge for making silver basins
and lavers in the same list amounts to about two-thirds of the weight.
The rate appears to have remained fairly constant, as in 1416 William
Randolf made four dozen chargers and eight dozen dishes of silver for
King Henry V. at 30s. the pound.[297]

The demand for silver plate during the later medieval period must
have been brisk, for every house of any pretension had its service of
plate standing on the cupboard or dresser. Nothing more astonished
the Venetian travellers in England in 1500 than this extraordinary
profusion and display; they noted that,[298] 'In one single street,
named the Strand, are 52 goldsmiths' shops so rich and full of silver
vessels, great and small, that in all the shops in Milan, Rome, Venice,
and Florence put together I do not think there would be found so many
of the magnificence that are to be seen in London. And these vessels
are all either saltcellars or drinking-cups or basins to hold water
for the hands, for they eat off that fine tin which is little inferior
to silver.' Although the home of the goldsmiths is here stated to be
the Strand, their chief centre was in Lombard Street and in Cheapside,
where, just about the time that this Venetian account was written,
Thomas Wood built Goldsmiths' Row with its ten fair houses and fourteen
shops and its four-storied front adorned with allusive wild men of the
wood riding on monstrous beasts.[299] Even as late as 1637 efforts were
made to compel the goldsmiths to remain in Cheapside for the greater
adornment of that thoroughfare.[300]

The Venetian reference to the 'fine tin' used for plates and dishes
serves to remind us that gold and silversmiths had no monopoly of
metal-working. Pewterers, founders, and such specialised trades as
bladesmiths and spurriers played an important part in the realm of
industry, and if the materials upon which they worked were less
valuable in themselves, the finished products were not to be despised
even from a purely artistic point of view. The figures of Queen Eleanor
of Castile and Henry III., both cast by William Torel, and those of
Edward III. and Queen Philippa, by Hawkin of Liége—to name but a few
obvious examples—are magnificent examples of the founder's work.
Mention may also be made of the tomb of Richard II. and his queen, at
which Nicholas Croker and Godfrey Prest, coppersmiths, worked for four
years, and for which they received £700.[301] To deal at all fully with
all the many branches of metal-working is outside the scope of this
book, but two particular branches, the founding of bells and of cannon,
are worth treating in considerable detail.

References to BELLS[302] during Saxon times are not infrequent, but
probably the earliest notice connected with their manufacture is
the entry amongst the tenants of Battle Abbey in the late eleventh
century of 'Ædric who cast the bells (_qui signa fundebat_).'[303] It
is likely that most early monastic peals were cast in the immediate
neighbourhood of the monastery by, or under the supervision, of the
brethren. But in the twelfth century, when Ralph Breton gave money to
Rochester Cathedral Priory for a bell, in memory of his brother, the
sacrist sent a broken bell up to London to be recast.[304] Possibly
the craftsman who recast this bell was the Alwold 'campanarius' who
was working in London about 1150.[305] Another early bell-founder was
Beneit le Seynter, sheriff of London in 1216.[306] Mr. Stahlschmidt is
no doubt right in interpreting this founder's name as 'ceinturier'
or girdler,[307] for there was at Worcester in the thirteenth century
a family whose members bore indifferently the name of 'Ceynturer' and
'Belleyeter.'[308] The demand for bells could hardly have been large
enough to enable a craftsman to specialise entirely in that branch, and
a bell-maker would always have been primarily a founder, and according
as the main portion of his trade lay in casting buckles and other
fittings for belts, or pots or bells, he would be known as a girdler, a
potter, or a bell-founder.[309]

The medieval English term for a bell-founder was 'bellyeter'
(surviving in London as 'Billiter Street,' the former centre of the
industry), derived from the Anglo-Saxon _geotan_, to pour: the word
is occasionally found used independently as a verb, the agreement for
casting a bell for Stansfield in 1453 stipulating that it should be
'wele and sufficiantly yette and made.'[310] So far as the process
itself is concerned,[311] it remained unchanged in its main features
until comparatively recent times and a considerable number of records
relating to bell-founding have survived and throw a little light upon
the details of the art. The first step was the formation of the 'core,'
an exact model of the inside of the bell, formed of clay. When this
had been hardened by baking, the 'thickness,' corresponding exactly to
the projected bell itself, was built up upon the core; finally, over
the 'thickness' was built a thick clay 'cope.' Originally, it would
seem, it was usual to make the 'thickness' of wax, which, melting upon
the application of heat, ran out and left the space between the core
and cope vacant for the molten metal to flow into: possibly some of
the early uninscribed bells which still exist may have been formed in
this fashion, but it seems clear that from the end of the thirteenth
century the use of wax was abandoned in England, the 'thickness' being
made of loam or earth.[312] The clay cope, moulded over this, was
carefully raised by a crane, the 'thickness' destroyed, and the cope
readjusted, after any inscription or other decoration had been stamped
on its inner surface. In order that the metal might flow directly from
the furnace into the mould the latter lay in a pit in front of the
furnace. The furnace doors being opened, the metal, consisting of a
mixture of copper and tin, flowed into the mould. If the metal was not
in a sufficiently fluid state, or if any check occurred the caster
would 'lose his labour and expense,' as happened to Henry Michel when
he recast the great bell of Croxden Abbey in 1313, and the work would
have to be done all over again.[313] But if the work had been properly
carried out the completed bell had to be tuned, unless, as was the case
at St. Laurence's, Reading, in 1596, 'not so much the tune of the bell
was cared for as to have it a loud bell and heard far.'[314]

The tuning was done by grinding, or cutting, down the rim of the bell
if the note was too flat, or by reducing its thickness, filing down
the inner surface of the sound bow, if the note was too sharp. In
order to reduce the amount of tuning required it was necessary to know
approximately the relation between size, or weight, and tone, and as
early as the reign of Henry III. a monk of Evesham, Walter of Odyngton,
devised a system by which each bell was to weigh eight-ninths of the
bell next above it in weight.[315] This system, delightfully simple
in theory, could not have yielded satisfactory results in practice,
and it is probable that most founders had their own systems, based
upon experience and practical observation. The question of whether
a bell was correctly in tune with the others of the peal was one
which naturally led to occasional disputes. When Robert Gildesburgh,
brazier, of London, a fifteenth-century bell-founder, cast two bells
for Whitchurch in Dorset, the vicar refused to pay for them, as he
said they were out of tune. Gildesburgh requested that they should be
submitted to the judgment of Adam Buggeberd, rector of South Peret, who
accordingly came over and heard them rung, and decided that there was
no fault in them.[316] In the case of the bells recast for the church
of St. Mary-at-Hill, London, in 1510,[317] we have first an entry of
6½d. paid 'for Reves labour and his brekefast for comyng from Ludgate
to Algate to here the iiij bell in tewne'; and then, as apparently the
churchwardens were not satisfied with his report, 8d. paid 'for wyne
and peres at Skran's howse at Algate for Mr. Jentyll, Mr. Russell,
John Althorpe, John Condall and the clarkes of saynt Antonys to go
and see whether smythes bell wer tewneabill or not.' Possibly the
decision in the case of this fourth bell cast by William Smith was
not satisfactory, as the 'great bell' seems to have been entrusted to
William Culverden, a contemporary founder, many of whose bells, bearing
his rebus of the culver or wood pigeon, still exist.

The bell having been fitted with an iron clapper, swung from a staple
inside the crown of the bell by a leathern baudrick, was fastened on
to a massive wooden stock furnished at its ends with gudgeons, or iron
pivots, to work in the bronze sockets of the frame, and was now ready
to be hung in the belfry. But although it was now a finished 'trade
article,' there was yet one more process to be undergone before it
could summon the faithful to church: it was usual, though apparently
by no means universal, for the bells to be blessed. Thus the bells
of St. Albans Abbey were consecrated in the middle of the twelfth
century by the Bishop of St. Asaph;[318] and a detailed account of the
dedication of the great bell called 'Jesus' at Lichfield Cathedral in
1477 has been preserved.[319] In the case of the five bells of St.
Michael's, Bishop's Stortford, recast by Reginald Chirche of Bury St.
Edmunds in 1489 at a cost of £42, an extra 17s. 6d. was paid 'for
their consecration (_pro sanctificacione_).'[320] That the dedication
ceremony included a form analogous to baptism is clearly shown by an
entry in the accounts of St. Laurence, Reading, where, in 1508, we find
'paid for hallowing the great bell named Harry 6s. 8d. And over that
Sir William Symys Richard Clich and Mistress Smyth being godfather and
godmother at the consecracyon of the same bell, and bearing all the
costs to the suffragan.'[321]

Of the early centres of the industry London was naturally the most
important. Two early bell-founders of this city have already been
mentioned, but it is noteworthy, as showing that to a certain extent
a man might be 'jack of all trades' even if he was master of one,
that several bells were cast for Westminster Abbey by Edward Fitz
Odo, the famous goldsmith of Henry III.[322] That monarch, a patron
of all the arts, granted 100s. yearly to the Bell-ringers' gild
of Westminster for ringing the great bells.[323] Mr. Stahlschmidt
has shown that the centre of the bell-founding trade was round
Aldgate and in the neighbourhood of St. Andrew Undershaft and St.
Botolph-without-Aldgate,[324] while amongst the more prominent early
founders were the family of Wimbish at the beginning of the fourteenth
century and the Burfords at the end of the same century. Contemporary
with these last was William Founder, whose trade stamp, bearing his
name and a representation of two birds on a conventionalised tree,
occurs on a number of bells and hints at his real surname, which,
although it has hitherto eluded historians, was clearly Wodeward.
Mr. Stahlschmidt[325] noticed the entry on the Issue Rolls of 1385
recording the purchase of twelve cannon from William the founder, but
did not notice that the very next year sixty cannon were bought from
William Wodeward,[326] while in 1417 other cannon were provided by
William Wodeward, founder.[327]

Amongst the provincial centres we may notice Gloucester, where Hugh
Bellyetare occurs about 1270, and John Belyetere in 1346,[328] the
latter being presumably the Master John of Gloucester, who with his
staff of six men came to Ely in 1342 to cast four bells for Prior
Walsingham.[329] A later bell-founder of some eminence at Gloucester
was William Henshawe, who was mayor in 1503, 1508, and 1509.[330]
Another of the craft who obtained more than local reputation was
John de Stafford, mayor of Leicester in 1366 and 1370,[331] who was
called in by the chapter of York to cast bells for the Minster in
1371.[332] This is the more remarkable as York was itself a centre of
the industry, the most famous of its founders being Richard Tunnoc,
who represented the city in Parliament in 1327, and dying in 1330,
left behind him as a worthy memorial 'the bell-maker's window' in
York Minster.[333] In the central panel of this window Richard Tunnoc
himself is shown kneeling before a sainted archbishop; the two other
panels show the process of bell-making. In the one the master workman
is supervising the flow of the metal into the mould from a furnace, the
draught of which is supplied by bellows worked by two young men, the
one standing upon them with one foot on each and the other holding the
handles. The remaining panel is usually said to represent the moulding
of the clay core, but it seems to me more likely to represent the
finishing, smoothing, and polishing of the completed bell.[334] Richard
Tunnoc is shown seated holding a long crooked instrument (resembling a
very large boomerang), and applying it with great care to the surface
of the bell, or core, which an assistant is rotating on a primitive
lathe consisting of two trestles and a crooked handle. The space round
each panel is filled with rows of bells swinging in trefoiled niches.

The number of churches in the larger towns being much greater in
medieval times than at the present day, and few of these churches being
content with a single bell, most of the chief towns, and in particular
those possessing cathedrals or important monasteries, had their
resident bell-founders. In the case of Exeter, Bishop Peter de Quivil,
about 1285, assured the proper care of the bells of the cathedral by
granting a small property in Paignton to Robert le Bellyetere as a
retaining fee, Robert and his heirs being bound to make or repair,
when necessary, the bells, organs, and clock of the cathedral, the
chapter paying all expenses, including the food and drink of the
workmen, and these obligations were duly fulfilled for at least three
generations, Robert, son of Walter, son of the original Robert, still
holding the land on the same terms in 1315.[335] Canterbury was another
local centre of the trade, and from Canterbury came the founder who in
1345 cast a couple of bells at Dover, the one weighing 3266 lbs., and
the other 1078 lbs., for each of which he was paid at the rate of a
halfpenny the pound.[336] In East Anglia there was an important foundry
at the monastic town of Bury St. Edmunds, one of the fifteenth-century
founders using as his trade mark a shield, which is interesting as
bearing on it not only a bell, but also a cannon with a ball issuing
from its mouth. Norwich, again, with its seventy churches and its
cathedral priory, was a busy centre of the industry. One of the later
Norwich founders, Richard Brasier, seems to have been more skilful
than straightforward and to have devoted some of his skill to evading
his obligations. In 1454 the churchwardens of Stansfield bargained
with him to cast a bell for their church, half payment to be made on
delivery and the other half at the expiration of a year and a day if
the bell proved satisfactory, but if it did not he was to cast a new
bell for them; he, however, taking advantage of their being unlearned
men caused the latter clause to be omitted from the indenture, and
when the bell proved unsatisfactory refused to make a fresh one.[337]
A few years later, in 1468, the parishioners of Mildenhall brought an
action against him for breach of contract. It had been agreed that the
great bell of Mildenhall should be brought by the parishioners to 'the
werkhous' of the said Richard Brasier and weighed by them, and that
Brasier should then cast from the metal of the old bell a new tenor
bell in tune with the others then in the church steeple, and should
warrant it, as was customary, for a year and a day, and if it were not
satisfactory should at his own expense take it back to Norwich 'to be
yoten.' They had duly carried the bell to his workshop, but he had not
cast it; in defence his counsel urged that although they had brought it
they had not weighed it, and that until they did so he was not bound to
cast it. On the other side it was argued that the point was frivolous,
that he could have weighed it himself, and that indeed the indenture
implied that it was to be weighed and put into the furnace by his men
in the presence of the men of Mildenhall.[338] A jury was summoned,
but did not appear, and the case was adjourned.

The suppression of the monasteries, followed by the seizure of Church
goods, including large numbers of bells, formed the rude termination
of the medieval period of the industry, and may be symbolised by the
death of William Corvehill, formerly subprior of Wenlock, 'a good bell
founder and maker of the frame for bells,' at Wenlock in 1546.[339]

We have seen that a cannon is shown on the shield used as a trade
mark by a fifteenth-century Suffolk bell-founder, and the casting
of ORDNANCE may rank with the casting of bells as one of the most
interesting and important branches of the founder's craft. Cannon seem
to have been introduced into England at the beginning of the reign of
Edward III. In 1339 there were in the Guildhall 'six instruments of
latten called gonnes and five roleres for the same. Also pellets of
lead weighing 4½ cwt. for the same instruments. Also 32 lbs. of powder
for the same.'[340] This same year guns are recorded to have been
used by the English at the siege of Cambrai, and they were also used
at Creçy in 1346. Two large and nine small 'gunnes' of copper were
provided for Sheppey Castle in 1365;[341] but whether any of these were
of native manufacture may be doubted, though a small gun sent over to
Ireland in 1360 is said to have been bought in London,[342] which does
not, of course, necessarily imply that it was made there. In 1385,
however, the sheriff of Cumberland included in his account of repairs
to the Castle of Carlisle 'costs incurred in making three brass cannons
which are in the said castle,'[343] and in the same year 'William
Founder,' as we saw when considering his work as a bell-founder,
provided twelve guns. Next year the same William Wodeward made no less
than sixty cannon for Calais.[344] As he was still providing ordnance
in 1416,[345] we may probably identify him with 'Master William
Gunmaker,' who made several small cannon in 1411, two of them being of

The early cannon were made of bronze of a similar composition to
that used for bells, and when iron was introduced the cannon of that
material were made in the form of a tube composed of long iron bars,
arranged like the staves of a barrel, bound round with iron bands.
They were all breech-loaders, consisting of two separate parts, the
barrel and the chamber; the latter being a short cylinder, usually
detachable, in which the charge of gunpowder was placed, and which was
then fastened into the base of the barrel by means of a stirrup or
similar apparatus. Double-barrelled cannon appear to have been fairly
common, as in 1401 eight single cannon and six double (_duplices_)
were sent to Dover Castle, and the same numbers to Scotland.[347]
An inventory of the artillery at Berwick-on-Tweed taken at the same
time[348] distinguishes between guns 'imbedded in timber bound with
iron' and 'naked' guns; it also mentions 'two small brass guns on
wooden sticks, called handgonnes,' an early instance of small arms. The
same inventory refers to 'quarells for gonnes'; and in the previous
year Henry Robertes, serjeant, dwelling near the Guildhall, was paid
£8, 8s. for twenty-four 'quarell gunnes,'[349] these being guns which
threw quarrels, or bolts similar to those used with crossbows.[350] The
usual projectiles employed in the larger guns were round stone balls,
such as had been in use for mangonels and catapults since the days of
the Romans, and these were supplied from the quarries of Maidstone
and elsewhere down to the time of Henry VIII. Iron 'gunstones' do not
seem to have been made much before the end of the fifteenth century,
and the 'wooden balls for cannon,' of which there were 350 at Dover in
1387,[351] can hardly have proved successful, but lead was commonly
employed for the smaller guns from an early date.

London was the chief centre of the manufacture of ordnance, but an
iron cannon was made at Bristol in 1408,[352] and five years later
John Stevenes of Bristol was ordered to supervise the making of
another.[353] In 1408 'a certain great cannon newly invented by the
king himself' was made;[354] this presumably was 'the great iron cannon
called Kyngesdoughter,' which, shortly after its birth, was broken at
the siege of 'Hardelagh.'[355] The 'Kyngesdoughter' was probably made
at the Tower, as were three other iron cannon at the same time, four
more being made in Southwark and two smaller ones by Anthony Gunner,
possibly at Worcester as one of them was tested there and broke during
the trial; of six bronze cannon made at the same time the largest, the
'Messager,' weighing 4480 lbs., and two small ones were broken at the
siege of Aberystwyth. The life of a gun in those days seems to have
been short, and that of a gunner precarious.[356] In 1496, when the
government range was at Mile End, 13s. 4d. was given to Blase Ballard,
gunner, 'towards his leche craft of his hands and face lately hurte at
Myles ende by fortune shoting of a gunne,'[357] and this is not the
only hint we have that these weapons were sometimes as dangerous to
their users as to the enemy.

The Germans and Dutch were particularly expert in the manufacture
of guns, and we find Matthew de Vlenk 'gonnemaker' in the service of
Richard II.,[358] while Godfrey Goykyn, one of four 'gunnemeystres'
from Germany, who were serving Henry V. during the last years of his
reign,[359] was employed in 1433 to finish off three great iron cannon
which Walter Thomasson had begun to make.[360] These cannon threw balls
of fourteen, sixteen, and eighteen inches diameter, respectively,
so that presumably they were 'bombards' or mortars, and probably
similar in type to one found in the moat of Bodiam Castle, and now at
Woolwich;[361] the core of this specimen, which is of 15-inch calibre,
is of cast-iron, the outer casing being formed of a series of bands
of wrought iron, and it was probably made in Sussex. It was in this
county, at Newbridge in Ashdown Forest, that Simon Ballard in 1497 cast
large quantities of iron shot,[362] those for 'bombardells' weighing
as much as 225 lbs. each, so that they had to be placed in the guns by
means of 'shotting cradles':[363] for 'curtows' the shot weighed 77
lbs., for 'demi-curtows' 39 lbs., for 'great serpentines' 19 lbs., and
for ordinary 'serpentines' 5 lbs. This same Simon Ballard was enrolled
amongst the gunners at the time of the Cornish rising under Perkin
Warbeck.[364] In the same way we find 'Pieter Robard alias Graunte
Pierre,' ironfounder of Hartfield,[365] described as a 'gonner,' and
casting 'pellettes' at 6d. a day in 1497.[366] In this same year ten
'faucons' (small guns which fired balls of about 2 lbs.) were made
by William Frese,[367] founder, at 10s. the hundredweight, and eight
faucons of brass were made by William Newport,[368] who was a London
bell-founder,[369] while John Crowchard repaired an old serpentyne that
John de Chalowne made and provided '10 claspis for the touche holes of
diverse gonnes with 5 oliettes and fourteen staples,' weighing 53 lbs.
at 2d. the pound, and also '7 bandes of yren made for the great gonnes
mouthes.'[370] Cornelys Arnoldson at the same time was paid for mending
five great serpentynes and making two new chambers to them, for '5
forelocks with cheynes to the said gonnes,' for 'handills made to the
chambres,' and for 'vernysshing and dressing' the guns.[371]

At the beginning of the reign of Henry VIII. large purchases of cannon
were made abroad, from Hans Popenreuter and Lewis de la Fava of
Mechlin, from Stephen of St. Iago, from Fortuno de Catalengo, and from
John Cavalcante of Florence, who also, in return for a grant of alum,
agreed to import saltpetre to the value of £2400.[372] But the English
foundries were not idle: Humphrey Walker, a London gunfounder, supplied
fifty pieces of ordnance, at 12s. the pound, as well as much shot,[373]
while Cornelys Johnson 'gonnemaker,' made and repaired ordnance for the
navy.[374] John Atkynson, another founder, in 1514 was paid 2s. 'for 8
lodes of clay to make molds for a great gun chamber' and a further 8d.
for 5 lbs. of hair 'to temper the clay withall'; he was also supplied
with latten and iron wire, and John Dowson made certain iron work,
including 'a rounde plate for the bottom of the chambre, in length
4½ feet, with 10 rounde hookes; a rounde plate with a crosse for the
mouthe of the chambre; 36 bandes of 4 foot in length for to wrapp the
chambre in; ... 6 pynnes of hardyron, 2 hokes, a stamme, a quespile,'

The medieval period of gunfounding came to an end with the discovery,
about 1543, of a method of casting iron cannon in the entire piece—then
boring them. This discovery is usually attributed to Ralph Hogge of
Buxted and Peter Baude, his French assistant, and resulted in the
ironmaking districts of the Weald of Sussex and Kent becoming the chief
centre of the manufacture of ordnance.[376]



The manufacture of earthen vessels was one of the earliest, as it
was one of the most widespread industries. From the end of the Stone
Age onwards wherever suitable clay was to be found, the potter plied
his trade. The Romans, who had brought the art of potting to a high
pitch of excellence, introduced improved methods into Britain, where
numerous remains of kilns and innumerable fragments of pottery testify
to the industry and the individuality of the Romano-British potters.
Several quite distinct types of pottery have been identified and are
assignable to definite localities. Great quantities of black and grey
wares, consisting of articles of common domestic use, ornamented for
the most part only with broad bands of darker or lighter shading, were
made in Kent near the Medway, the finer specimens being associated
with Upchurch. From the potteries in the New Forest[377] came vases of
greater ornamental and artistic execution, but it was the neighbourhood
of Castor in Northamptonshire that occupied in Roman times the place
held in recent times by Staffordshire. Round Castor numbers of
kilns have been found,[378] and the peculiar dark ware, with its
self-coloured slip decoration, occurs all over England, and also on the

Romano-British kilns have been found in a great number of places,
some of the best preserved being at Castor,[379] in London,[380]
at Colchester,[381] Radlett (Herts.),[382] and Shepton Mallet
(Somerset).[383] Speaking generally they consisted of a circular pit,
about 4 to 6 feet in diameter, dug out to a depth of about 4 feet:
in this was a flat clay floor raised some 2 feet from the bottom of
the pit by a central pedestal. Into the space between this floor, or
table, and the bottom of the pit came the hot air and smoke from a
small furnace built at one side of the pit, or kiln proper. On the clay
table, which was pierced with holes for the passage of the heat and
smoke, were ranged the clay vessels to be baked, and these were built
up in layers of diminishing diameter into a domed or conical structure,
the layers being separated by grass covered with clay, the whole was
then covered in with clay, leaving only an aperture in the centre at
the top,[384] and the furnace lighted.

The early medieval kilns appear to have been very similar in
construction to those just described, or of even simpler construction.
If we may take literally the statement that a potter at Skipton paid
6s. 8d. in 1323 'for dead wood and undergrowth to burn round his
pots'[385] it would seem that here a primitive combination of furnace
and kiln in one was in use. At a later date the usual construction was
probably something similar to those found at Ringmer, in Sussex,[386]
which seem to belong to the fifteenth century. Here the kilns were
built of bricks or blocks of clay cemented by a sandy loam which
vitrified under the influence of the heat to which it was subjected.
The beds of the kilns enclosed longitudinal passages covered in with
narrow arches, the spaces between which served to transmit the hot air
to the superimposed clay vessels. The hearths were charged through
arched openings at their ends with charcoal fuel.

To render the pottery non-porous, it was necessary to glaze it,[387]
and from an early period lead has been used for this purpose. A
twelfth-century description of the process says[388] that the surface
of the vase is first to be moistened with water in which flour has been
boiled, and then powdered with lead: it is then placed inside a larger
vessel and baked at a gentle heat. This process gives a yellow glaze,
but if green is required—and green was the colour most often used in
England in the medieval period—copper or bronze was to be added to the
lead. The same authority gives a recipe for a leadless glaze: baked
potter's earth is powdered and washed and then mixed with half its
weight of unbaked earth, containing no sand; this is then worked up
with oil and painted over the surface of the vase.

Potters are mentioned at Bladon (Oxon.), Hasfield (Gloucs.), and
Westbury (Wilts.), in Domesday,[389] but apart from casual references
in place names[390] and in descriptions of individuals[391] the
documentary history of early English pottery is scanty. Kingston on
Thames may have been an early centre of the trade, as in 1260 the
bailiffs of that town were ordered to send a thousand pitchers to the
king's butler at Westminster.[392] At Graffham, in Sussex, in 1341, one
of the sources of the vicar's income was 'a composition from the men
who made clay pots, which is worth 12d.,'[393] but the most common form
of entry is a record of sums paid by potters for leave to dig clay.
Thus at Cowick in Yorkshire,[394] in 1374, as much as £4, 16s. was
'received from potters making earthen vessels, for clay and sand taken
in the moor of Cowick.' Similar entries occur here every year for about
a century, while at Ringmer, in Sussex, small dues of 9d. a head were
paid yearly by some half a dozen potters for a period of well over two
hundred years.[395] Still earlier, in 1283, a rent of 36s. 8d., called
'Potteresgavel,' was paid to the lord of the manor of Midhurst.[396]

The type of pottery produced does not seem to have varied to any great
extent in the different districts.[397] At Lincoln it seems to have
been the custom to decorate some of the vessels by means of stamps:
some of these stamps, in the form of heads, may be seen in the British
Museum. But the use of stamps for decorating pottery is found also at
Hastings. One distinctive variety of earthenware, however, arose about
the beginning of the sixteenth century: it is a thin hard pottery, dark
brown in colour, well glazed, and usually decorated with elaborate
patterns in white slip. From its being found in large quantities in the
Cistercian abbeys of Yorkshire—Kirkstall, Jervaulx, and Fountains—it
has received the name of 'Cistercian ware,' but there is at present no
direct evidence of its place of manufacture.[398]

Closely connected with pottery is the manufacture of TILES, the
material being in each case clay, and the kilns used being practically
identical. At what period the manufacture of tiles, which had ceased
with the Roman occupation, was resumed in England is not certain, but
from the beginning of the thirteenth century they play an increasing
part in the records of building operations. The frequency and
devastating effect of fires, where thatched roofs were in use, soon
led to the use of tiles for roofing purposes in towns even when the
authorities did not make their use compulsory, as was done in London
in 1212, and at a much later date, in 1509, at Norwich.[399] The
importance, for the safety of the town, of having a large supply of
tiles accessible at a low price was recognised, and in 1350, after the
Black Death had sent the prices of labour and of manufactured goods
up very high, the City Council of London fixed the maximum price of
tiles at 5s. the thousand,[400] and in 1362, when a great tempest had
unroofed numbers of houses and created a great demand for tiles, they
ordered that the price of tiles should not be raised, and that the
manufacturers should continue to make tiles as usual and expose them
for sale, not keeping them back to enhance the price.[401] It was
probably the same appreciation of the public advantage that led the
authorities at Worcester in the fifteenth century to forbid the tilers
to form any gild, or trade union, to restrain strangers from working in
the city, or to fix a rate of wages.[402]

The Worcester regulations also ordered that all tiles should be marked
with the maker's sign, so that any defects in size or quality could
be traced to the party responsible. Earlier in the same century, in
1425, there had been many complaints at Colchester of the lack of
uniformity in the size of the tiles made there,[403] and at last it
became necessary in 1477 to pass an Act of Parliament to regulate the
manufacture.[404] By this Act it was provided that the clay to be used
should be dug, or cast, by 1st November, that it should be stirred and
turned before the beginning of February, and not made into tiles before
March, so as to ensure its being properly seasoned. Care was to be
taken to avoid any admixture of chalk or marl or stones. The standard
for plain tiles should be 10½ inches by 6¼ inches with a thickness of
at least ⅝ inch; ridge tiles or crests should be 13½ inches by 6¼, and
gutter tiles 10½ inches long, and of sufficient thickness and depth.
Searchers were to be appointed and paid a penny on every thousand
plain tiles, a half-penny on every hundred crests, and a farthing
for every hundred corner and gutter tiles examined. Infringement of
the regulation entailed fines of 5s. the thousand plain, 6s. 8d. the
hundred crest, and 2s. the hundred corner or gutter tiles sold. 'The
size of the tiles is probably a declaration of the custom, the fine
is the price at which each kind was ordinarily sold in the fifteenth

These regulations throw a certain amount of light upon the processes
employed in tile-making, and further details are obtainable from the
series of accounts relating to the great tileworks in the Kentish manor
of Wye,[406] extending from 1330 to 1380. In 1355 the output of ten
kilns (_furni_) was 98,500 plain, or flat, tiles, 500 'festeux'[407]
(either ridge or gutter tiles), and 1000 'corners.' The digging of the
clay and burning of the kilns was contracted for at 11s. the kiln,
a thousand faggots were bought for fuel[408] at a cost of 45s., and
another 10s. was spent on carriage of the clay and faggots. The total
expenses were therefore £8, 5s., and as plain tiles sold here for 2s.
6d. the thousand, festeux at three farthings each, and corners at 1s.
8d. the hundred, the value of the output was about £14, 15s. In 1370,
when thirteen kilns belonging to two tileries turned out 168,000 plain
tiles, 650 festeux, and 900 corners, we have a more elaborate account.
Wood was cut at the rate of 15d. for each kiln; clay for the six kilns
of one tilery was 'cast' at 14d. the kiln and 'tempered' at the rate
of 1s. 6d., but for the seven kilns of the other tilery payment was
made in grain. The clay was carried to the six kilns for 4s., and
prepared[409] for moulding into tiles for 7s.; the actual making and
burning[410] of the tiles was paid for at 14s. the kiln, and an extra
12d. were given as gratuities to the tilers. Next year the output was
considerably reduced, because in one tilery 'the upper course of the
kilns (_cursus furni_) did not bake the tiles fully, nor will it bake
them until extensive repairs are done,' and in the other tilery only
four kilns were prepared, and one of these had to be left unburnt
until the next year, owing to the lack of workmen. It was possibly for
the defective kiln just mentioned that a 'new vault' was made in 1373
at a cost of 6s. 8d.—with a further 8d. for obtaining loam (_limo_)
for the work. Two years later repairs were done to the buildings of a
tilery, which had been blown down by the wind. But the chief blow was
struck to the industry here by the increasing difficulty of obtaining
workmen. The work may have been unhealthy, for it is noteworthy that
the Ringmer potters were on more than one occasion wiped out by
pestilence:[411] the effects of the Black Death in 1350 on the Wye
tilers are not recorded, but in 1366 as a result, apparently, of the
second pestilence two small tileries, one of three roods, and the other
of 1½ acres, which had been leased for 7d. and 14d. respectively, lost
their tenants, and in 1375 mention is made of the scarcity of workmen,
'who died in the pestilence at the time of tile making.' In 1377 Peter
at Gate,[412] who for the past few years had hired a number of kilns
at 20s. a piece, only answered for four kilns 'on account of hindrance
to the workmen, who had been assigned to guard the sea coast, and on
account of the great quantity of rain in the autumn, which did not
allow him to burn more kilns.' In the same year, and also two years
later, another tilery was unworked for lack of labour.

The tileries at Wye belonged to the Abbot of Battle, and there were
tile kilns at Battle itself in the sixteenth century,[413] and probably
much earlier, as in the adjoining parish of Ashburnham in 1362,
there was a 'building called a Tylehous for baking (_siccandis_)
tiles.'[414] Just about the same time, in 1363, we find 'a piece of
land called Teghelerehelde' in Hackington,[415] close to Canterbury,
granted to Christian Belsire, in whose family it remained for over
a century, as in 1465 William Belsyre leased to John Appys and
Edmund Helere of Canterbury 'a tyleoste with a workhouse' lying
at Tylernehelde in Hackington for two years for a rent of 26s.
8d.[416] With the 'tyleoste' William Belsyre handed over 15,000 'tyle
standardes'—worth 18d. the thousand, eighty 'palette bordes and three
long bordys for the kelle walles.'[417] Various building accounts
show that there were extensive tileries at Smithfield; for Guildford
Castle the tiles came from Shalford, and for Windsor chiefly from 'la
Penne.' In the north tiles were made before the end of the thirteenth
century at Hull, amongst other places, but one of the chief centres
was Beverley. About 1385 the monks of Meaux complained that 'certain
workmen of Beverley who were called tilers, makers and burners of the
slabs (_laterum_) with which many houses in Beverley and elsewhere are
covered,' had trespassed on the abbey's lands at Waghen and Sutton,
taking away clay between the banks and the stream of the river Hull
without leave, to convert into tiles. The monks seized their tools,
their oars, and finally one of their boats, but the Provost of
Beverley, on whose fee the tileries were, supported the tilers in their
claim to dig clay in any place covered by the waters of the Hull at its
highest.[418] Some thirty years earlier, in 1359, the list of customary
town dues at Beverley included 'from every tiler's furnace fired
½d.,'[419] and in 1370 Thomas Whyt, tiler, took a lease of the tilery
of Aldebek from the town authorities for four years, at a rent of 6000

So far we have been dealing with roofing tiles, or 'thakketyles,' but
from the middle of the fourteenth century onwards with increasing
frequency, we find mention of 'waltyles' or bricks. For building
a new chamber at Ely in 1335 some 18,000 wall tiles (_tegularum
muralium_) were made at a cost of 12d. the thousand.[421] They seem
to have been introduced from Flanders, and are frequently called
'Flaundrestiell,'[422] as, for instance, in 1357, when a thousand were
bought for a fireplace at Westminster at 3s. 2d.[423] At Beverley, in
1391, three persons acquired from the gild of St. John the right to
take earth at Groval Dyke, paying yearly therefor 3000 'waltyles,'[424]
and in 1440 Robert Collard, tile-maker, took 'le Grovaldyke on the west
side of le demmyng' at a rent of 1000 'waltyl.'[425] It was probably
more particularly with regard to brick kilns than to ordinary tile
kilns that the regulations drawn up in 1461[426] ordered that, 'on
account of the stench, fouling the air and destruction of fruit trees,
no one is to make a kiln to burn tile nearer the town than the kilns
now are, under penalty of a fine of 100s.' The term 'brick' does not
seem to have come into common use much before 1450, about which time
the use of the material became general.

In addition to roof tiles and wall tiles, there were floor tiles.
References to these occur in many building accounts. At Windsor, in
1368, 'paven-tyll' cost 4s. the thousand, and a large variety 2s.
the hundred, while plain roof tiles were 2s. 6d. the thousand.[427]
These were probably plain red tiles, but at Westminster in 1278 we
have mention of the purchase of 'a quarter and a half of yellow tiles'
for 7d.[428] Tiles with a plain yellow or green glazed surface are
of common occurrence in medieval buildings, and in many churches and
monastic ruins pavements of inlaid, so-called 'encaustic,' tiles remain
more or less complete.[429] In the case of these inlaid tiles the
pattern was impressed or incised before baking, and then filled in with
white slip, the whole being usually glazed. Some of the patterns thus
produced were of great beauty and elaboration, and it would seem that
they were often designed, if not actually made, by members of monastic
houses. The finest known series are those discovered at Chertsey Abbey,
and it is possible that the remarkable examples in the chapter-house
of Westminster Abbey,[430] which date from _c._ 1255, are by the same
artist. In the case of the Abbey of Dale in Derbyshire,[431] and the
priories of Repton and Malvern,[432] the kilns used for making these
inlaid tiles have been discovered, and similar kilns, not associated,
so far as is known, with any religious establishment, have also been
found at Hastings.[433] The manufacture of these inlaid tiles in
England gradually died out towards the end of the fifteenth century,
and has only been revived in recent years.

It is curious that although there is abundant circumstantial evidence
of GLASSMAKING in England, during the medieval period, direct
records of the manufacture are extremely scarce, and practically
confined to a single district. From the early years of the thirteenth
century, Chiddingfold and the neighbouring villages on the borders
of Surrey and Sussex were turning out large quantities of glass.
Laurence 'Vitrarius' (the glassman) occurs as a landed proprietor in
Chiddingfold about 1225, and some fifty years later there is a casual
reference to 'le Ovenhusfeld,' presumably the field in which was the
oven or furnace house, of which the remains were uncovered some years
since.[434] It is possible that in the case of glassmaking, as in
the case of many other industries, improvements were introduced from
abroad, for in 1352 we find John de Alemaygne[435] of Chiddingfold
supplying large quantities of glass for St. Stephen's Chapel,
Westminster.[436] In one batch he sent up three hundred and three weys
(_pondera_) of glass, the wey being 5 lbs., and the hundred consisting
of twenty-four weys, being, that is to say, the 'long hundred' of 120
lbs. A little later he sent thirty-six weys, and soon after another
sixty weys were bought at Chiddingfold, probably from the same maker.
The price in each case was 6d. the wey, or 12s. the hundred, to which
had to be added about 1d. the wey for carriage from the Weald to
Westminster. In January 1355-6 four hundreds of glass were bought from
the same maker for the windows of St. George's Chapel, Windsor, at 13s.
4d. the hundred.[437]

Towards the end of the fourteenth century the family of Sherterre, or
Shorter, became prominent in the Chiddingfold district,[438] and on the
death of John Sherterre in 1380 his widow engaged John Glasewryth, of
Staffordshire, to work the glass-house for six years, receiving 20d.
for every sheaf (_sheu_)[439] of 'brodeglass' (_i.e._ window glass),
and 6d. for every hundred of glass vessels made. This is interesting as
showing that glass vessels were made here; the evidence of inventories,
however, seems to show that glass was as a whole very little used for
table purposes, though a few pieces of the beautiful Italian glassware
might be found in the houses of the wealthy. The family of Shorter were
succeeded by the Ropleys, and they in turn by the Peytos, who carried
on the trade during the whole of the sixteenth century, and as late as
1614, thus well overlapping the modern period of glassmaking, which
began with the coming of the _gentilshommes verriers_ from France early
in the reign of Elizabeth.[440]

Glass must have been made in many other districts where fuel and sand,
the chief requisites for the manufacture, were plentiful, but it is
difficult to identify any sites of the industry. In 1352 John Geddyng,
glazier, was sent into Kent and Essex to get glass for St. Stephen's,
Westminster,[441] but where he went and whether he was successful, is
not known. 'English glass' is found in use at Durham in 1397,[442] and
at York in 1471.[443] For York Minster sixteen sheets (_tabulae_) of
English glass were bought from Edmund Bordale of Bramley buttes for
14s. 8d. in 1478,[444] and at an earlier date, in 1418, we find three
seams, three weys of white glass bought from John Glasman of Ruglay
(Rugeley) at 20s. the seam of twenty-four weys,[445] but whether these
men were glass makers, or merely glass merchants, cannot be determined.
That the industry, so far at least as real stained glass is concerned,
was not flourishing in England in the fifteenth century is shown by the
fact that Henry VI., in 1449, brought over from Flanders John Utynam to
make glass of all colours for Eton College and the College of St. Mary
and St. Nicholas (_i.e._ King's) Cambridge. He was empowered to obtain
workmen and materials at the King's cost, and full protection was
granted to him and his family. He was also allowed to sell such glass
as he made at his own expense, and 'because the said art has never
been used in England, and the said John is to instruct divers in many
other arts never used in the realm,' the King granted him a monopoly,
no one else being allowed to use such arts for twenty years without his
licence under a penalty of £200.[446] Most glass of which we have any
account was bought through the glaziers of the larger towns; but to
what extent they made their own glass we cannot say. A certain amount,
especially of coloured glass, was imported, and the York accounts
show 'glass of various colours' bought in 1457 from Peter Faudkent,
'Dochman' (_i.e._ German), at Hull,[447] 'Rennysshe' glass bought in
1530, Burgundy glass in 1536, and Normandy glass in 1537,[448] while
in 1447 we find the executors of the Earl of Warwick stipulating
that no English glass should be used in the windows of his chapel at

To any one who knows the beauty of English stained glass this
stipulation may seem strange, but it must be borne in mind that our
cathedral windows derive their glories not from the maker, but from the
painter, and that the glass is but the medium carrying the designs of
the artist. English glass as a rule, prior at any rate to the fifteenth
century, was white and received its decoration after it had left the
glass-house. The process may be gathered from the account of St.
Stephen's in 1352. Here we find John of Chester and five other master
glaziers employed at a shilling a day drawing designs for the windows
on 'white tables,' presumably flat wooden tablets, which were washed
with ale,[450] which served no doubt as a size or medium to prevent the
colours running. About a dozen glaziers were employed at 7d. a day to
paint the glass, and some fifteen, at 6d. a day, to cut or break the
glass and join it,[451] which they apparently did by placing it over
the painted designs, this being presumably done before it was painted.
The glass thus cut into convenient shapes was held in place over the
design by 'clozyngnailles,' and when it had been painted was joined
up with leads, lard or grease being used to fill the joints. For the
painting silver foil, gum arabick, jet (_geet_), and 'arnement' (a kind
of ink) were provided.[452] Possibly the stronger colours were supplied
by the use of pieces of stained glass, as purchases were made of ruby,
azure, and sapphire glass.



Important as was the wool trade, for centuries the main source of
England's wealth, its history, pertaining to the realms of commerce
rather than of industry, does not concern us here, and we may ignore
the raw material to deal with the manufactured article. To treat at
all adequately the vast and complicated history of clothmaking would
require a volume as large as this book, even if the line be drawn at
the introduction of the New Draperies by Protestant refugees in the
time of Elizabeth, and all that is possible here is briefly to outline
that history.

The weaving of cloth is of prehistoric antiquity, implements employed
therein having been found in numbers in the ancient lake-village of
Glastonbury, and on other earlier sites, but documentary evidence
may be said to begin with the twelfth century. By the middle of that
century the industry had so far developed in certain centres that
the weavers of London, Winchester, Lincoln, Oxford, Huntingdon, and
Nottingham, and the fullers of Winchester, had formed themselves
into gilds, which were sufficiently wealthy to pay from 40s. to £12
yearly to the king for various privileges which practically amounted
to the monopoly of cloth-working in their several districts.[453]
If these were the principal they were by no means the only centres
of the industry. Stamford,[454] on the borders of Lincolnshire and
Northants., was another; and Gloucester,[455] while dyers are found at
Worcester[456] in 1173, and at Darlington[457] ten years later.

To the twelfth century also belong the remarkable 'laws of the weavers
and fullers' of Winchester, Marlborough, Oxford, and Beverley.[458]
These, which all closely resemble one another, and were either based
upon, or intimately related to the regulations in force in London, show
the clothworkers in a state of subjection for which it is difficult to
account. Briefly summarised, they lay down that no weaver or fuller
may traffic in cloth or sell it to any one except to the merchants of
the town, and that if any became prosperous and wished to become a
freeman of the town, he must first abandon his trade and get rid of all
the implements connected with it, and then satisfy the town officials
of his ability to keep up his new position without working at his
old trade. But the most singular provision, found in all these laws,
was that no fuller or weaver could attaint or bear witness against a
'free man.' Here it is clear that 'free man' is used not as opposed
to a villein,[459] but as implying one possessing the full franchise
of his town, in other words, a member of the governing merchant gild,
or equivalent body. Probably the English cloth trade, which was very
extensive during the twelfth century, was entirely in the hands of the
capitalist merchant clothiers, at any rate so far as the great towns
here in question were concerned, and they had combined to prevent
members of the handicraft gilds of clothworkers from obtaining access
to the merchant gilds. As the charter granted to the London weavers by
Henry II. early in his reign confirms to them the rights and privileges
which they had in the time of Henry I., and orders that no one shall
dare to do them any injury or despite,[460] it may be suggested that
these restrictive regulations were drawn up in the time of Stephen. For
the date at which they were collected, evidently as precedents for use
in London, we may hazard 1202, in which year the citizens of London
paid sixty marks to King John to abolish the weavers' gilds.[461]

It is curious that most modern writers assume the English cloth trade
to have practically started with the introduction of Flemish weavers
by Edward III. It is constantly asserted[462] that prior to this the
cloth made in England was of a very poor quality and entirely for home
consumption. Both statements are incorrect. A very large proportion
of the native cloth was certainly coarse 'burel,' such as that of
which 2000 ells were bought at Winchester in 1172 for the soldiers
in Ireland,[463] or the still coarser and cheaper Cornish burels
which were distributed to the poor by the royal almoner about this
time.[464] At the other end of the scale were the scarlet cloths for
which Lincoln and Stamford early attained fame. Scarlet cloth, dyed if
not actually made on the spot, was bought in Lincoln for the king in
1182 at the prodigious price of 6s. 8d. the ell, about £7 in modern
money. At the same time 'blanket' cloth and green say cost 3s. the
ell, and grey say 1s. 8d.[465] Thirty years later the importance of
the trade is indicated by the inclusion in Magna Carta of a section
fixing the breadth of 'dyed cloths, russets, and halbergetts' at two
ells 'within the lists.'[466] Infringements of the 'assize of cloth'
were of constant occurrence, and were amongst the matters inquired
into by the justices holding 'pleas of the Crown'; for instance, in
Kent, in 1226, some thirty merchants and clothiers are presented as
offenders in this respect,[467] Henry III. at the beginning of his
reign, in May 1218, had ordered that any cloths of less than two ells
breadth exposed for sale should be forfeited,[468] but this order was
not to take effect before Christmas so far as burels made by the men
of London, Marlborough, and Bedwin (Wilts.) were concerned, and in
1225 the citizens of London were exempted from keeping the assize,
provided their burels were not made narrower than they used to be.[469]
In 1246 the sheriff of London was ordered to buy one thousand ells of
cheap burel to give to the poor;[470] and in 1250 we find the king
discharging an outstanding bill of £155 due to a number of London
burellers, whose names are recorded;[471] amongst them was one Gerard
le Flemeng, but otherwise they appear to have been native workmen. The
burellers seem to have already separated off from the weavers, and had
certainly done so some time before 1300, at which date disputes between
the two classes of clothmakers were common.[472]

Apart from the burels, which were probably very similar wherever made,
the cloths made at different centres usually possessed distinctive
characteristics. In the list of customs paid at Venice on imported
goods in 1265,[473] we find mention of 'English Stamfords,' 'dyed
Stamfords,' and of 'Milanese Stamfords of Monza,' showing that
this particular class of English cloth was sufficiently good to
be copied abroad. It is rather a noticeable feature of the cloth
trade that so many of the trade terms were taken from the names of
the places in which the particular wares originated. A prominent
instance of this occurs in the case of 'chalons,' which derived
their name from Chalons-sur-Marne, but were made in England from an
early date. 'Chalons of Guildford' were bought for the king's use at
Winchester Fair in 1252.[474] Winchester itself was an early centre
of the manufacture of chalons, which were rugs used for coverlets
or counterpanes, and in the consuetudinary of the city,[475] which
dates back at least to the early years of the thirteenth century, the
looms are divided into two classes, the 'great looms' used for burel
weaving paying 5s. a year, and the 'little looms' for chalons paying
6d. or 12d., according to their size. The chalons were to be of fixed
dimensions, those 4 ells long being 2 yards in breadth (_devant li
tapener_), those of 3½ yards 1¾ yards wide, and those of 3 ells long
1½ ells wide. Coverlets formed also an important branch of the Norfolk
worsted[476] industry; in this case the ancient measurements were said
in 1327 to have been 6 ells by 5, 5 by 4, or 4 by 3.[477] At a later
date, in 1442, we find worsted 'beddes' of much greater dimensions, the
three 'assizes' being 14 yards by 4, 12 by 3, or 10 by 2½,[478] but
presumably these were complete sets of coverlet, tester and curtains,
such as those of which a number are valued at from 6s. 8d. to 20s.
a piece in the inventory of the goods of the late King Henry V. in
1423.[479] Besides bedclothes the worsted weavers made piece cloth,
and amongst the exports from Boston in 1302 figure worsted cloths and
worsted seys.[480] Boston, as we might expect from its nearness to
Lincoln, exported a good deal of scarlet cloth, while the amount of
'English cloth' sent out is proof of a demand for this material abroad:
a ship from Lubeck took 'English cloth' worth £250 for one merchant,
Tideman de Lippe, and two other ships carried cargoes of the same
material worth more than £200. 'Beverley cloths' are also represented
amongst these exports, and coloured cloths of Lincoln and Beverley
are found about this time at Ipswich paying the same tolls as foreign
cloths.[481] At Ipswich also cloths of Cogsall, Maldon, Colchester,
and Sudbury are mentioned as typical 'clothes of Ynglond' exported[482]
and are classified as 'of doubele warke that men clepeth tomannyshete,'
and a smaller kind 'of longe webbe that they call omannesete,'[483] or
'oon mannys hete.' The origin of these terms appears to be unknown, but
as these were probably the narrow cloths afterwards known as 'Essex
straits,' there was possibly some connection with the narrow 'Osetes'
of Bristol.[484]

So far as London is concerned, the skill of the weavers at the end
of the thirteenth century is shown by the variety of types of cloth
which are referred to in the regulations of 1300.[485] Here we find
mention of cloths called andly, porreye, menuet, virli, lumbard,
marbled ground with vetch-blossom, hawes, bissets, etc. But it would
seem that the English cloth makers failed to keep pace[486] with their
Continental rivals, and instead of improving the quality of their
goods endeavoured to keep up prices by restricting their output.[487]
Edward III., seeing the need for new blood, took measures to attract
foreign clothworkers[488] to England, and at the same time, in 1337,
absolutely prohibited the use or importation of foreign cloth.[489] In
order to stimulate the output he even withdrew all restrictions as to
measures, and licensed the making of cloths of any length and breadth;
but this excess of freedom soon proved unworkable. The newcomers were
not very popular with the native weavers, and in 1340 the king had to
send orders to the Mayor of Bristol to cease from interfering with
Thomas Blanket and others who had set up machines for making cloth, and
had brought over workmen.[490] The vexation against which Blanket had
appealed seems to have been the regulation that every new weaving loom
was to pay 5s. 1d. to the Mayor, and 40d. to the aldermen; this rule
was confirmed in 1346, but annulled in 1355.[491]

Before dealing with the various ordinances by which the manufacture
of cloth was controlled, it may be as well to consider the processes
through which the wool passed before it reached the market, for

    'Cloth that cometh from the weaving is not comely to wear
    Till it be fulled under foot or in fulling stocks;
    Washen well with water, and with teasels cratched,
    Towked and teynted and under tailor's hands.'[492]

Having dropped into verse, we may perhaps continue in that medium, and
set out the various stages of the manufacture in a poem,[493] written
in 1641, but equally applicable to earlier times:—

 '1. First the Parter, that doth neatly cull
      The finer from the courser sort of wool.[494]
  2.  The Dyer then in order next doth stand,
      With sweating brow and a laborious hand.
  3.  With oil they then asperge it, which being done,
  4.  The careful hand of Mixers round it runne.
  5.  The Stockcarder his arms doth hard imploy
      (Remembring Friday is our Market day).
  6.  The Knee-carder doth (without controule)
      Quickly convert it to a lesser roule.
  7.  Which done, the Spinster doth in hand it take
      And of two hundred roules one threed doth make.
  8.  The Weaver next doth warp and weave the chain,
      Whilst Puss his cat stands mewing for a skaine;
      But he, laborious with his hands and heeles,
      Forgets his Cat and cries, Come boy with queles.[495]
  9.  Being fill'd, the Brayer doth it mundifie
      From oyle and dirt that in the same doth lie,
  10. The Burler[496] then (yea, thousands in this place)
      The thick-set weed with nimble hand doth chase.
  11. The Fuller then close by his stock doth stand,
      And will not once shake Morpheus by the hand.
  12. The Rower next his armes lifts up on high,
  13. And near him sings the Shearman merrily.
  14. The Drawer last, that many faults doth hide
      (Whom merchant nor the weaver can abide)
      Yet is he one in most clothes stops more holes
      Than there be stairs to the top of Paul's.'

The first process, then, was the sorting of the wool. The better
quality was used for the ordinary cloths, and the worst was made up
into coarse cloth known as cogware and Kendal cloth, three-quarters
of a yard broad, and worth from 40d. to 5s. the piece.[497] The term
cogware seems to have sprung from its being sold to cogmen, the crews
of the ships called cogs; but whether for their own use, or for export
is not quite clear. The alternative name of Kendal cloths was derived
from the district of Kendal in Westmoreland, a seat of the industry, at
least as early as 1256.[498] The mixing of different qualities of wool
in one cloth was prohibited; and as it was forbidden to mix English
wool with Spanish,[499] so was the use of flocks, or refuse wool, in
ordinary cloth,[500] except in the case of the cloth of Devonshire, in
which, owing to the coarseness of the wool, an admixture of flock was

In dyeing two mediums are required, the colouring matter and the
mordant which fixes the dye in the wool. The mordant most in use in
the Middle Ages was alum,[502] and at Bristol in 1346 we find that
only 'Spyralym, Glasalym, and Bokkan' might be used and that any one
using 'Bitterwos' or 'Alym de Wyght,' which must have derived its name
from the Isle of Wight, or even found with any in his possession, was
liable to be fined.[503] Far the commonest dye-stuff was the blue
woad, of which enormous quantities were used. The plant (_Isatis
tinctoria_) from which this was prepared is indigenous (the ancient
Britons, indeed, wore the dye without the intervention of cloth), but
practically all the woad used commercially in England was imported,
Southampton being one of the great centres of the trade.[504] In 1286
the authorities at Norwich came to an agreement with the woad merchants
of Amiens and Corby as to the size of the packages in which woad and
weld, a yellow dye in much demand, might be sold,[505] and at Bristol
some sixty years later elaborate regulations were drawn up for the
preparation of the woad, of which two varieties are mentioned, that of
Picardy and that of Toulouse.[506] The woad was imported in casks in
the form of dry balls; these had to be broken up small, moistened with
water, and then heaped up to ferment; after a few days the top layer
became so hot that it could hardly be touched with the hand; the heap
was then turned over to bring the bottom to the top, and left till this
in turn had fermented; a third turn usually sufficed to complete the
process.[507] In Bristol special 'porters' were appointed to undertake
and supervise this seasoning and the subsequent storing of the woad,
and a further regulation compelled the merchant to sell his woad within
forty days after it had been stored and assayed.[508] The setting of
the woad, that is to say its conversion into dye, was also an art in
itself, and it would seem that in Bristol it was the custom for dyers
to go to the houses of their customers and prepare the woad-vats.
Through undertaking more jobs than they could properly attend to,
much woad was spoilt, and in 1360 they were forbidden to take charge
of more than one lot of dye at one time.[509] Further abuses arose
through the ignorance and incapacity of many of the itinerant dyers,
and in 1407 it was enacted that only those dyers who held a certificate
of competency should ply their trade in the town.[510] At Coventry,
another great centre of the trade, complaints were made in 1415 that
the dyers had not only raised their prices, charging 6s. 8d. instead
of 5s. for a cloth, 30s. instead of 20s. for 60 lbs. of wool, and 6s.
instead of 4s. for 12 lbs. of the thread for which the town was famous,
but were in the habit of taking the best part (_la floure_) of the woad
and madder for their own cloths, and using only the weaker portion
for their customers' cloths. A petition was therefore made that two
drapers, a woader and a dyer, should be elected annually to supervise
the trade.[511] Some fifty years later we have at Coventry a notice of
what appears to have been a medieval instance of a quarrel between a
'trade union,' the Dyers Company, and 'blackleg' firms.[512] Thomas de
Fenby and ten other dyers of Coventry complained against John Egynton
and William Warde that they had assembled the members of their trade
and had compelled them to swear to various things contrary to the law
and their conscience, as that no one should buy any woad until it had
been viewed and appraised by six men chosen for the purpose by the
said Egynton and Warde, and that no dyer should make any scarlet dye
(_grene_) at less than 6s. (the vat?), or put any cloth into woad for
less than 4d. or 5d. Warde and Egynton had also adopted the medieval
form of picketing, by hiring Welshmen and Irishmen to waylay and kill
the complainants on their way to neighbouring markets.

A list of cloths made in York in 1395-6[513] gives some idea of the
colours in general use. For the first three months, September-December,
blue largely predominated, but for some unexplained reason this
colour almost disappeared from January to May, its place being taken
by russet. Red, sanguine, morrey (or orange), plunket,[514] green,
and motleys, white, blue, and green occur; also 'paly,' which was
presumably some striped material, and in a very few cases black. By the
regulations drawn up in London in 1298,[515] no dyer who dyed burnets
blue[516] or other colours might dye 'blecche' or tawny: the reason
does not appear, but this uncertain tint, 'blecche,' occurs again as
reserved specially for Spanish wool.[517] For blue, as we have seen,
woad was used, and for yellow weld, a combination of the two yielding
green; scarlet was derived from the grain (_greyne_),[518] and reds
and russets from madder, which was imported in large quantities.
Several varieties of lichen were probably included under the head of
'orchal,' and afforded shades of brown and red. Fancy shades were
formed by double dyeing, and apparently were not always reliable, as a
statute[519] passed in 1533 ordered that none should dye woollen cloth
'as browne blewes, pewkes, tawnyes, or vyolettes,' unless they were
'perfectly boyled, greyned, or madered upon the wode, and shotte with
good and sufficient corke or orchall.' At this time brazil, or logwood,
was being adopted as a dye, and its use was absolutely forbidden.

Carding, or combing, and spinning are processes which need not detain
us long. They were both home industries, and spinning, in particular,
was the staple employment of the women, and accordingly regulations
were not infrequently made to ensure a good supply of wool for their
use. At Bristol, in 1346, no oiled wool ready for carding and spinning
might be sent out of the town until the carders and spinners had had
a chance of applying for it; moreover, it might only be exposed for
sale on a Friday, and no middleman might buy it.[520] Similarly at
Norwich, in 1532, the butchers were ordered to bring their woolfells
into the market and offer them for sale to the poor women who lived by
spinning.[521] When the clothmaking trade got into the hands of the big
capitalist clothiers, who gave out their wool to be carded and spun, it
became necessary to pass laws[522] to ensure on the one hand that the
workers should do their work faithfully, and not abstract any of the
wool,[523] and on the other, that the masters should not defraud the
carders and spinners by paying them in food or goods[524] instead of
in money, or by the use of false weights, making women, for instance,
comb 7½ lbs. of wool as a 'combing stone,' which should only contain 5

Weaving was, of course, the most important of all the processes in
clothmaking. Reduced to its simplest form, the weaver's loom consists
of a horizontal frame, to the ends of which the warp threads, which
run longitudinally through the cloth, are fastened in such manner that
they can be raised and depressed by heddles, or looped threads, in
alternate series, leaving room between the two layers of warp for the
passage of the shuttle, charged with the woof.[526] The shuttle, flying
from side to side across the alternating warp threads, covers them
with woof, which is packed close by a vertical frame of rods, the lay
or batten, swinging between the warp threads. To weave tight and close
required considerable strength, and at Norwich women were forbidden to
weave worsteds because they were 'not of sufficient power' to work them
properly.[527] The cloth as it was woven was wound on a roll, bringing
a fresh portion of the warp within the weaver's reach, but while its
length was thus limited merely by custom or convenience, its breadth
was obviously controlled by the width of the loom, and when Henry IV.,
in 1406, ordered that cloth of ray should be made six-quarters of a
yard broad instead of five-quarters, as had always been the custom,
the order had to be revoked as it would have necessitated all the ray
weavers obtaining new looms.[528] For the right to use looms payments
had often to be made to authorities of the town. At Winchester in
the thirteenth century, every burel loom paid 5s. yearly, the only
exceptions being that the mayor, the hospital, and the town clerk might
each work one loom free of charge.[529] Nottingham was another town
where duties were paid on looms,[530] and at Bristol, as we have seen,
prior to 1355, the erection of a 'webanlam' entailed payments of 8s.
5d. in all.

To guard against false working, it was the rule at Bristol that all
looms must stand in shops and rooms adjoining the road, and in sight
of the people, and the erection of a loom in a cellar or upstair
room entailed a fine.[531] It was possibly for the same reason that
weavers were forbidden to work at night,[532] though an exception
was made at Winchester in favour of the period immediately preceding
Christmas.[533] On the other hand, the London jurors in 1320 coupled
this ordinance against working by candle light with the enforced
holiday which the weavers' gild compelled its members to take between
Christmas and the Purification (2nd February)[534] as measures
prejudicial to the commonalty, and intended to restrict the supply
and so maintain the price of cloth.[535] A further device for the
same purpose was the rule that no cloth of Candlewick Street was to
be worked in less than four days, though they might easily be made in
two or three days.[536] Thanks to these methods, and to the way in
which admission to the gild was limited, the looms in the city had
been reduced in thirty years or so from 380 to 80, and the price of
cloth had risen accordingly. The authorities throughout the country
were constantly in the dilemma of having on the one hand to permit the
restriction of the numbers of the weavers, with a consequent rise in
the cost of their wares, or, on the other hand, running the risk of
inferior workmanship 'to the grete infamie and disclaundre of their
worshipfull towne.' Not only were the unauthorised weavers often
ignorant of their art, not having served their apprenticeship, but
they used flock and other bad material, and bought stolen wool and
'thrummes.'[537] The latter were the unwoven warp threads left over
at the end of the cloth, and as there was no export duty on thrums,
the weavers contrived to cut them off as long as possible, and in
this way much woollen yarn was sent out of the country without paying
customs, until the practice was made illegal by an Act of Parliament in

The cloth on leaving the loom was in the condition known as 'raw,' and
although not yet ready for use was marketable, and many of the smaller
clothmakers preferred to dispose of their products at this stage rather
than incur the expense of the further processes. This seems to have
been the case on the Welsh border, as Shrewsbury claimed to have had
a market for '_pannus crudus_' from the time of King John.[539] Much
raw cloth was also bought up by foreign merchants and sent out of the
country to be finished; and at the beginning of the sixteenth century
Parliament, with its usual terror of foreign trade, seeing only that
the finishing processes would be carried out by foreign workmen instead
of English, forbade the export of unfinished cloth. It had then to
be pointed out that, as most of these cloths were bought to be dyed
abroad, and as after dyeing all the finishing processes would have to
be repeated, the cost of the cheaper varieties would be so raised that
there would be no sale for them; cloths below the value of five marks
were therefore exempted.[540]

Raw cloth had next to be fulled, that is to say, scoured, cleansed,
and thickened by beating it in water. Originally this was always
done by men trampling upon it in a trough, and the process was known
as 'walking,' the fuller being called a 'walker' (whence the common
surname), but during the thirteenth century an instrument came into
general use called 'the stocks,' consisting of an upright, to which was
hinged the 'perch' or wooden bar with which the cloth was beaten. The
perch was often worked by water power and fulling, or walking, mills
soon became common. By the regulations of the fullers' gild of Lincoln
recorded in 1389,[541] no fuller was to 'work in the trough,' that is
to say to walk the cloth, and a further rule forbade any man to work
at the perch with a woman, unless she were the wife of a master or her
handmaid. Probably the intention of this last rule was to put a stop to
the employment of cheap female labour 'by the whiche many ... likkely
men to do the Kyng servis in his warris and in the defence of this his
lond, and sufficiently lorned in the seid crafte, gothe vagaraunt and
unoccupied and may not have thar labour to ther levyng.'[542] About
1297 a number of London fullers took to sending cloths to be fulled at
certain mills in Stratford, and as this was found to result in much
loss to the owners of the cloths, orders were given to stop all cloths
on their way to the mills, and only allow them to be sent on at the
express desire of the owners.[543] This seems to point to mill fulling
being inferior to manual labour, while possibly the fulling being
conducted outside the control of the city may have tended to bad work.
At Bristol in 1346, one of the rules for the fullers forbids any one
to send 'rauclothe' to the mill, and afterwards receive it back to be
finished,[544] and in 1406 the town fullers were forbidden to make good
the defects in cloths fulled by country workmen.[545]

For cleansing the cloth use was made of the peculiar absorbent earth
known as Fuller's earth, or 'walkerherth,'[546] as it was sometimes
called. Fuller's earth is only found in a few places, the largest
deposits being round Nutfield and Reigate,[547] and on account of its
rarity and importance its export was forbidden.

The cloth, having been fulled, had to be stretched on tenters to dry,
and references to the lease of tenter grounds are common in medieval
town records.[548] A certain amount of stretching was legitimate and
even necessary,[549] but where the cloth belonged to the fuller, and
it was a common practice for fullers to buy the raw cloth, there was a
temptation to 'stretch him out with ropes and rack him till the sinews
stretch again'[550] so as to gain several yards. As a result of this
practice, which greatly impaired the strength of the cloth, 'Guildford
cloths,' made in Surrey, Sussex, and Hampshire, lost their reputation,
and in 1391 measures had to be taken to restore their good name by
forbidding fullers, or other persons, to buy the cloth in an unfinished
state.[551] Several other Acts were passed dealing with this offence,
and during the sixteenth century ordinances were issued against the
use of powerful racks with levers, winches, and ropes. Infringements
of these Acts were numerous,[552] and as an example of the extent
to which cloths were stretched we may quote a return from Reading in
1597, which mentions one cloth of thirty yards stretched with 'a gyn
and a leaver with a vice and a roape' to thirty-five yards, and another
stretched with a rope 'to the quantitye of three barrs length—every
barr contayneth about 2½ yards.'[553]

On leaving the fuller the cloth passed into the hands of the rower,
whose business it was to draw up from the body of the cloth all the
loose fibres with teazles. Teazles, the dried heads of the 'fuller's
thistle,' are mentioned amongst the goods of some of the Colchester
cloth-workers in 1301,[554] were used from the earliest times, and
have never been supplanted even in these days of machinery. Several
unsuccessful attempts have been made to invent substitutes, and in
1474 the use of iron cards, or combs, instead of teazles, had to be
forbidden.[555] The loose portions of the cloth thus raised by the
teazles were next cut off by the shearman, upon whose dexterity the
cloth depended for the finish of its surface, and, after the drawer had
skilfully repaired any small blemishes, the cloth was ready for sale.

In view of the multiplicity of processes involved, it is obvious that
the manufacture of cloth must have afforded employment to an immense
number of persons. An account written in Suffolk just over the borders
of our medieval period, in 1618, reckons that the clothier who made
twenty broad cloths in a week would employ in one way and another
five hundred persons.[556] But even at that time, when the capitalist
clothier was firmly established, there were not very many with so large
an output as twenty cloths a week, and in earlier times there were
very few approaching such a total. The ulnager's accounts[557] of the
duties paid on cloths exist for most counties for the last few years of
Richard II., and throw considerable light on the state of the trade. In
the case of Suffolk for the year 1395, we have 733 broad cloths made
by about one hundred and twenty persons, of whom only seven or eight
return as many as twenty cloths; the chief output, however, was narrow
cloth, made in dozens (pieces of 12 yards, a 'whole cloth' being 24
yards); of these 300 makers turned out about 9200, fifteen of their
number making from 120 to 160 dozens each. In the case of Essex there
is more evidence for the capitalist clothier, as at Coggeshall the
1200 narrow cloths are assigned to only nine makers (the largest items
being 400, 250, and 200 dozens), while Braintree, with 2400 dozens had
only eight makers, of whom two pay subsidy on 600 dozens each and one
on 480. The great clothiers, however, at this time are found in the
west, at Barnstaple, where John Parman paid on 1080 dozen, and Richard
Burnard on 1005, other nine clothiers dividing some 1600 dozens between
them. For the rest of Devonshire, sixty-five makers account for 3565
dozens, or rather over fifty a piece. If Devon stood at one end of
the scale its next-door neighbour was at the other, for Cornwall's
total output was only ninety cloths, attributed to thirteen makers. At
Salisbury the year's output of 6600 whole cloths was divided between
158 persons, only seven of whom accounted for more than 150 each,
while at Winchester, where over 3000 cloths are returned, only three
clothiers exceeded the hundred, and men of such local prominence as
Robert Hall and 'Markays le Fayre'[558] had only eighty and forty to
their respective accounts. Throughout Yorkshire the average does not
seem to have been above ten cloths, and in Kent, a stronghold of the
broad cloth manufacture, only one clothier exceeded fifty dozens, and
only three others passed twenty-five. The whole evidence seems to limit
the spheres of influence of the capitalist clothiers to a few definite
towns prior to the beginning of the fifteenth century. But the latter
half of the fifteenth century saw the rise of the great clothiers such
as John Winchcombe,[559] the famous 'Jack of Newbury,' and the Springs
of Lavenham,[560] employers of labour on a scale which soon swamped
the small independent clothworkers, and drew them into a position of

Skill and industry in the cloth trade had always been assured of a good
return, and when combined with enterprise had often led to wealth; but
there have always in all times and all places been men who would try
the short cut to fortune through fraud; and the openings for fraud
in the cloth trade were particularly numerous. 'Certayne townes in
England ... were wonte to make theyre clothes of certayne bredth and
length and to sette theyre seales to the same; while they kept the
rate trulye strangers dyd but looke over the seale and receyve theyre
wares, wherebye these townes had greate vente of theyre clothes and
consequently prospered verye welle. Afterwards some in those townes,
not content with reasonable gaynes but contynually desyrynge more,
devysed clothes of lesse length, bredthe and goodnes thanne they were
wonte to be, and yet by the comendacioun of the seale to have as myche
monye for the same as they had before for good clothes. And for a tyme
they gate myche and so abused the credythe of theyr predecessours to
theyre singulere lukere, whiche was recompensede with the losse of
theyre posterytye. For these clothes were founde fawltye for alle
theyre seale, they were not onelye never the better trustede but myche
lesse for theyre seale, yea although theyre clothes were well made. For
whanne theyr untruth and falshede was espyede than no manne wolde buye
theyre clothes untylle they were enforsede and unfoldede, regardynge
nothynge the seale.'[561]

This complaint, written in the time of Henry VIII., is borne out in
every detail by the records of Parliament and of municipalities.
Regulations were constantly laid down for ensuring uniformity, and
officials called ulnagers[562] were appointed to see that they were
obeyed, no cloth being allowed to be sold unless it bore the ulnager's
seal. The assize of cloth issued in 1328[563] fixed the measurements of
cloth of ray at 28 yards by 6 quarters, and those of coloured cloths
at 26 yards by 6½ quarters, in the raw state, each being 24 yards when
shrunk. The penalty for infringement of the assize was forfeiture.[564]
This assize, which was confirmed in 1406, repealed next year, but
reaffirmed in 1410,[565] applied only to broad cloths, but in 1432 it
was laid down[566] that narrow cloths called 'streits' should be 12
yards by 1 yard, when shrunk; if smaller they were not forfeited, but
the ulnager cut the list off one end, to show that it was not a whole
cloth, and it was sold as a 'remnant' according to its actual measure.
In the case of the worsteds or serges of Norfolk, four different
assizes were said in 1327 to have been used from time immemorial,
namely, 50, 40, 30, and 24 ells in length;[567] but as early as 1315
merchants complained that the cloths of Worsted and Aylesham did not
keep their assize, 20 ells being sold as 24, 25 ells as 30, and so
on.[568] In the western counties, Somerset, Gloucester, and Dorset,
fraudulent makers were in the habit of so tacking and folding their
cloths that defects in length or quality could not be seen, with the
result that merchants who bought them in good faith and took them to
foreign countries were beaten, imprisoned and even slain by their angry
customers 'to the great dishonour of the realm.' It was therefore
ordered in 1390 that no cloth should be sold, tacked, and folded, but
open.[569] The frauds in connection with stretching Guildford cloths
have already been referred to, and in 1410 we find that worsteds which
had formerly been in great demand abroad were now so deceitfully made
that the Flemish merchants were talking of searching, or examining, all
the worsted cloths at the ports of entry. To remedy this 'great slander
of the country,' the mayor and his deputies were given the power to
search and seal all worsteds brought to the worsted seld, or cloth
market, and regulations were made as to the size of 'thretty elnys
streites' (30 ells by 2 quarters), 'thretty elnys brodes' (30 ells by
3 quarters), 'mantelles, sengles, doubles et demy doubles, si bien les
motles, paules, chekeres, raies, flores, pleynes, monkes-clothes et
autres mantelles' (from 6 to 10 ells by 1¼ ell), and 'chanon-clothes,
sengles, demy doubles et doubles' (5 ells by 1¾), the variety of trade
terms showing the extent of the industry.[570] A similar complaint of
the decay in the foreign demand for worsteds owing to the malpractices
of the makers was met in 1442 by causing the worsted weavers of Norwich
to elect annually four wardens for the city, and two for the county to
oversee the trade.[571] Half a century later, in 1473, English cloth
in general had fallen into disrepute abroad, and even at home, much
foreign cloth being imported: to remedy this general orders were issued
for the proper working of cloth, the maintenance of the old assize, and
the indication of defects, a seal being attached to the lower edge of
any cloth where there was any 'raw, skaw, cokel or fagge.'[572]

The last-mentioned statutes of 1473 give the measurements of the cloths
as by the 'yard and inch.' Originally it would seem to have been
customary when measuring cloth to mark the end of each yard by placing
the thumb on the cloth at the end of the clothyard, and starting again
on the other side of the thumb. Readers of George Eliot will remember
that the pedlar, Bob Salt, made ingenious use of his broad thumb in
measuring, to the detriment of his customers; and the London drapers in
the fifteenth century claimed to buy by the 'yard and a hand,' marking
the yards with the hand instead of with the thumb, and thereby scoring
two yards in every twenty-four.[573] Although this was forbidden in
1440, the use being ordered of a measuring line of silk, 12 yards and
12 inches long, the end of each yard being marked an inch, it evidently
continued in practice, as the 'yarde and handfull' was known as London
measure at the end of the sixteenth century.[574]

The last years of the medieval period of the woollen industry, which
we take as terminating with the introduction of the 'New Draperies' by
foreign refugees early in the reign of Elizabeth, are chiefly concerned
with the rise of the town clothiers at the expense of the small country
cloth workers, assisted by Acts which restricted, or at least aimed at
restricting, the industry to corporate boroughs and market towns, and
prohibited any from setting up in trade without having passed a seven
years' apprenticeship.[575] Infringements of these laws were frequent,
and, thanks to the system of granting a portion of the fines inflicted
to the informer, accusations were constantly levelled against clothiers
for breaking the various regulations with which the trade was hedged
about.[576] Many of the charges fell through, and in some cases they
look like blackmail, but that offences were sufficiently plentiful is
clear. For the one year, 1562, as many as sixty clothiers from Kent
alone, mostly from the neighbourhood of Cranbrook and Benenden, were
fined for sending up to London for sale cloths deficient in size,
weight, quality, or colour.[577] An absolute fulfilment of all the
regulations was possibly no easy thing, for although cloths which had
been sealed by the ulnager in the district where they were made were
not supposed to pay ulnage in London the makers preferred as a rule to
pay a halfpenny on each cloth to the London searchers rather than risk
the results of too close a scrutiny.[578]

Of the many local varieties of cloth made in England that which derived
its name from the village of Worsted in Norfolk was, on the whole, the
most important. We have seen that by the end of the thirteenth century
worsted weaving was well established in Norfolk, and particularly in
Norwich, and that worsted serges and says were articles of export,
while a century later the forms in which these cloths were made up
were very varied. Norwich continued to hold the monopoly of searching
and sealing worsteds, wherever made, until 1523, when the industry
had grown to such an extent in Yarmouth that the weavers of that town
were licensed to elect a warden of their own to seal their cloth; the
same privilege was granted to Lynne, provided there were at least ten
householders exercising the trade there; but in all cases the cloths
were to be shorn, dyed, coloured, and calendered in Norwich.[579] When
the art of calendering worsteds, that is to say giving them a smooth
finish by pressing, was introduced in Norwich is uncertain, but in
the second half of the fifteenth century the 'fete and misterie of
calendryng of worstedes' in London was known only to certain Frenchmen.
An enterprising merchant, William Halingbury, brought over from Paris
one Toisaunts Burges, to teach the art to English workers, and, in
revenge, one of the London French calenders endeavoured to have
Halingbury arrested on his next visit to Paris.[580] At the beginning
of the sixteenth century a process of dry calendering with 'gommes,
oyles and presses' was introduced, by which inferior worsteds were made
to look like the best quality, but if touched with wet they at once
spotted and spoiled. The process was therefore prohibited in 1514, and
at the same time the practice of wet calendering was confined to those
who had served seven years' apprenticeship, and had been admitted to
the craft by the mayor of Norwich or the wardens of the craft in the
county of Norfolk.[581]

In 1315 cloths of Aylsham (in Norfolk) are coupled with those of
Worsted as not conforming to the old assize,[582] and at the coronation
of Edward III. some 3500 ells of 'Ayllesham' was used for lining
armour, covering cushions and making 1860 pennons with the arms of
St. George.[583] But as Buckram and Aylsham are constantly bracketed
together,[584] being used, for instance, in 1333 for making hobby
horses (_hobihors_) for the king's games,[585] presumably at Christmas,
it would seem that Aylshams were linen and not woollen, especially as
'lynge teille de Eylesham' was famous in the fourteenth century.[586]

In the adjacent county of Suffolk the village of Kersey was an early
centre of clothmaking, and gave its name to a type of cloth which
was afterwards made in a great number of districts. The kerseys of
Suffolk and Essex were exempted in 1376, with other narrow cloths, from
keeping the assize of coloured cloths,[587] and just a century later
the measurement for kerseys was set out as 18 yards by 1 yard.[588]
Curiously enough the chief trouble with the assize of kerseys, at least
in the sixteenth century, was not short measure, but over long, the
explanation being that kerseys paid export duty by the whole cloth,
and it was therefore to the merchant's advantage to pay duty on a
piece of 25 yards rather than to pay the same duty on 18 yards.[589]
Kerseys were largely made for export, and a petition against
restrictions tending to hamper foreign trade was presented, about 1537,
by the kersey weavers of Berks., Oxford, Hants, Surrey, and Sussex,
and Yorkshire.[590] These counties were the chief centres of the
manufacture, though Devonshire kerseys were also made; in Berkshire,
Newbury was then the great seat of the industry, and the kerseys of
John Winchcombe ('Jack of Newbury') in particular had a more than local
fame. Hampshire kerseys was the generic name applied to these made in
Hampshire, Sussex, and Surrey, but in earlier times the Isle of Wight
had almost a monopoly of the manufacture in the district. The ulnage
accounts for Hampshire in 1394-5 give ninety names of clothiers for the
Isle of Wight,[591] who made 600 kerseys, and no other kind of cloth,
and about a century later we find a draper complaining that when he had
bargained with a London merchant for a certain number of 'kersys of
Wyght' worth £6 he had been put off with Welsh kerseys worth only £4,
13s. 4d.[592]

Suffolk did a considerable trade in a cheap, coarse variety of cloth
known as 'Vesses or set cloths' for export to the East; and, as it
was the recognised custom to stretch these to the utmost, and they
were bought as unshrunk, this class of cloth was exempted in 1523
from the regulations as to stretching cloth.[593] Possibly these
Vesses were connected with the 'Western Blankett of Vyse (Wilts.) and
Bekinton.'[594] Blanket is found in 1395 as made at Maldon and, on the
other side of England, at Hereford, while at an earlier date, in 1360,
Guildford blanket was bought for the royal household.[595] As Norwich
had its 'monk's cloth' and 'canon cloth,' presumably so called from its
suitability for monastic and canonical habits, unlike the fine cloth
of Worcester, which, we are told, was forbidden to Benedictines,[596]
so we find that the newly made knight of the Bath had to vest himself
in 'hermit's array' of Colchester russet.[597] Most of the cloths made
in Essex were 'streits,' or narrow cloths, of rather a poor quality,
being often coupled with the inferior cloths such as cogware and
Kendal cloth. Of the latter a writer of the time of Henry VIII. says,
'I knowe when a servynge manne was content to goo in a Kendall cote in
sommer and a frysecote in winter, and with playne white hose made meete
for his bodye.... Now he will looke to have at the leaste for Somere
a cote of finest clothe that may be gotten for money and his hosen of
the finest kerseye, and that of some straunge dye, as Flaunders dye or
Frenche puke, that a prynce or a greate lorde canne were no better if
he were [wear] clothe.'[598]

By the sumptuary law of 1363 farm labourers and others having less than
40s. in goods were to wear blanket and russet costing not more than
12d. the ell.[599] In a list of purchases of cloth in 1409, narrow
russet figures at 12d. the ell, while of the other cheap varieties
short blanket, short coloured cloth, rays, motleys and friezes varied
from 2s. to 2s. 4d. the ell.[600] Of friezes the two chief types in use
were those of Coventry and Irish friezes, which might either be made in
Ireland or of Irish wool: these seem to have come into use about the
middle of the fourteenth century, as in 1376 Irish 'Frysseware' was
exempted from ulnage,[601] and about the same time purchases of Irish
frieze for the royal household become more common, as much as nearly
3000 ells of this material being bought in 1399.[602]

With such local varieties as Manchester cottons, Tauntons, Tavistocks,
Barnstaple whites, Mendips, 'Stoke Gomers alias thromme clothes,'[603]
and so forth, space does not permit of our dealing, while by the
limitation which we have set ourselves the 'new draperies' are
excluded, and we may thankfully leave on one side 'arras, bays,
bewpers, boulters, boratoes, buffins, bustyans, bombacyes, blankets,
callimancoes, carrells, chambletts, cruell, dornicks, duraunce, damask,
frisadoes, fringe, fustyans, felts, flanells, grograines, garterings,
girdlings, linsey woolseyes, mockadoes, minikins, mountaines,
makerells, oliotts, pomettes, plumettes, perpetuanas, perpicuanas,
rashes, rugges, russells, sattins, serges, syettes, sayes, stamells,
stamines, scallops, tukes, tamettes, tobines, and valures.'[604]



The dressing of skins and preparation of leather must have been one
of the most widely diffused industries in medieval times, even if it
is a little exaggeration to claim that it was a by-product of most
villages.[605] Two different processes were employed, ox, cow, and
calf hides being tanned by immersion in a decoction of oak bark, while
the skins of deer, sheep, and horses were tawed with alum and oil, and
the two trades were from early times kept quite separate, tanners and
tawyers being forbidden to work skins appropriated to each other's
trade. A certain concentration of the industry must have been brought
about in 1184, when orders were issued that no tanner or tawyer should
practise his trade within the bounds of a forest except in a borough
or market town,[606] the object being to prevent the poaching of deer
for the sake of their skins. Market towns had the further advantage of
being well supplied with the raw material, as butchers were compelled
to bring the hides of their beasts into market with the meat, and the
tanners had the sole right of purchase, no regrater or middle-man
being allowed to intervene, while on the other hand the tanners were
not allowed to buy the hides outside the open market.[607] Towards the
end of the sixteenth century it was said[608] that 'in most villages
of the realm there is some one dresser or worker of leather, and ...
in most of the market towns three, four, or five, and many great
towns 10 or 20, and in London and the suburbs ... to the number of
200 or very near.' Casting back, we find at Oxford in 1380 there were
twelve tanners, twenty skinners, twelve cordwainers, or shoemakers,
and four saddlers,[609] while in 1300 there were at Colchester forty
householders employed in the various branches of the leather trade.[610]

Originally, no doubt, the leather dresser worked up his own leather,
and as late as 1323 it would seem that at Shrewsbury cordwainers were
allowed to tan leather,[611] but in 1351 the tanners and shoemakers
were definitely forbidden to intermeddle with each other's craft, and a
series of regulations, parliamentary and municipal, served to separate
the tanners, the curriers, who dressed and suppled the rough tanned
hides, the tawyers, and the various branches of leather-workers.

The stock in trade of the tanner was simple. The inventories of the
goods of half a dozen tanners at Colchester in 1300 are identical in
kind though varying in value;[612] each consists of hides, oak bark,
and a number of vats and tubs. In the case of the tannery at Meaux
Abbey[613] (the larger monastic houses usually maintained their own
tanneries) in 1396 rather more details are given. There were in store
cow and calf leather, 'sole peces, sclepe, clowthedys, and wambes'
to the value of £14, 10s. 4d., 15 tubs and various tools, such as 3
'schapyng-knyfes' and 4 knives for the tan; 400 tan turves (blocks of
bark from which the tan had been extracted), and 'the tan from all the
oaks barked this year.' The raw hides had first to be soaked, then
treated with lime to remove the hair, and then washed again before
being placed in the tan vat. Consequently leather-dressers settled
'where they may have water in brooks and rivers to dress their leather;
without great store of running water they cannot dress the same.'[614]
In 1461 William Frankwell, when making a grant of a meadow at Lewes,
reserved the right to use the ditch on the south side of the meadow for
his hides,[615] and complaints of the fouling of town water supplies
by leather workers were not unusual.[616] The process of tanning was,
and for the best leather still is, extremely slow; the hides were
supposed to lie in the 'wooses' (ooze, or liquor) for a whole year,
and stringent regulations were issued to prevent the hastening of the
process, to the detriment of the leather. The bark from which the tan
was obtained, and which was so important a feature of the process that
'barker' was an alternative name for tanner, had to be only of oak, the
use of ash bark being forbidden; nor might lime or hot liquor be used,
the imbedding of the vats in hot beds of old tan being prohibited.

Hides, both raw and tanned, ranked with cloth as a leading article of
trade, both home and foreign;[617] and, like cloth, tanned leather was
early subject to examination by searchers, appointed either by the
craft gild or by the town authorities. As a rule the searcher's seal
was affixed in the market, or at the particular 'seld' or hall where
alone leather might be sold, but at Bristol in 1415 the searchers were
empowered to examine the hides at the curriers' houses before they were
curried.[618] The curriers, whose business it was to dress the 'red'
hides with tallow,[619] rendering them smooth and supple, were not
allowed to dress badly tanned hides.[620] Several grades of tanning
were recognised, the most lengthy and thorough workmanship being
required for leather intended for the soles of boots and rather less
for the uppers. When forty-seven hides belonging to Nicholas Burle, of
London, were seized in 1378 as not well tanned, he admitted that they
were not fit for shoeleather, but urged that he intended to sell them
to saddlers, girdlers, and makers of leather bottles: a mixed jury of
these various trades, however, condemned the hides as unfit for any
purpose, and they were forfeited.[621]

Although there was thus an efficient control exercised over tanned
leather, the tawed soft leathers used by glovers, pointmakers,
pursemakers, saddlers, girdlers, coffermakers, budgetmakers,
stationers, etc., seem for the most part to have escaped supervision,
with the result that at the end of the sixteenth century the markets
were flooded with counterfeit leathers.[622]

                         {    Oil, as    { Buff   } of the first and
                         {               { Shamoys}    best sort.
  'All Tawed leather is  { or with Alum
       dressed with      {  and Oker as  { Bull, Ox, Steer, Cow,
                         {  the hides of {  Horse, Stag, Hind,
                                         {  Buck, Doe, Calf, Dog,
                                         {  Seal, Sheep, Lamb,
                                         {  Kid.

'The leather dressed with oil is made more supple, soft and spongey,
and is wrought with a rough cotton, as bayes and fresadoes are, the
cotton being raised in the fulling mill where cloth is fulled, and
serveth for the more beauty and pleasure to the wearer.

'The leather dressed with alum and oker is more tough and "thight,"
serving better for the use of the poor artificer, husbandman, and
labourer, and a more easy price by half, and is wrought smooth or with
cotton which is raised by hand with a card or other like tool, and as
the alum giveth strength and toughness, the oker giveth it colour, like
as the oil doth give colour to Buff and Shamoys.

'And this diversity of dressing, with oil or alum, is to be discerned
both by smell and by a dust which ariseth from the alum leather....

'All Shamoys leather is made of goat skins brought for the most part
out of Barbury, from the "Est countries," Scotland, Ireland, and other
foreign parts, unwrought, and is transported again being wrought. And
there is much thereof made from skins from Wales and other parts within
the realm.... Being dressed with oil it beareth the name Shamoys, but
being dressed with alum and oker, it beareth not the name or price of
Shamoys, but of Goat skins.'

'Shamoys[623] is made of goat, buck, doe, hind, sore, sorrell,
and sheepskins. The true way of dressing is in "trayne oyle," the
counterfeit is with alum and is worth about half.... Shamoys dressed
in train oil can be dressed again three or four times, and seem as good
as new, but dressed in alum it will hardly dress twice and will soon be
spied. And when Shamoys dressed in alum cometh to the rain or any water
they will be hard like tanned leather, and Shamoys in oil make the
cheapest and most lasting apparel, which the "low countrie man and the
highe Almayn" doth use.'

Frauds in the preparation and sale of leather were of frequent
occurrence, and in 1372 the mayor and aldermen of London ordained
penalties for the sale of dyed sheep and calf leather scraped and
prepared so as to look like roe leather. At the same time the leather
dyers were forbidden to dye such counterfeit leathers, and also to use
the brasil or other dye provided or selected by one customer for the
goods of another.[624] With the same object of preventing frauds the
tawyers who worked for furriers were not allowed to cut the heads off
the skins which they dressed, and were also liable to imprisonment
if they worked old furs up into leather.[625] Further penalties for
false and deceitful work, especially in the making of leather 'points
and lanyers,' or laces and thongs, were enacted in 1398.[626] With
the growth of capitalism during the reign of Elizabeth the control
exercised by the Leathersellers' Company became almost nominal, some
half a dozen wealthy members of the company getting the whole trade
into their own hands. By buying up the leather all over the country,
they forced up prices; having, moreover, a practical monopoly of tawed
leathers they were able to make the glovers and other leather workers
take the dressed skins in packets of a dozen, which contained three or
four small 'linings' or worthless skins.[627] They also undertook the
dressing of the skins, and cut out the good workmen by scamping their
work and employing men who had only served half their seven years'
apprenticeship.[628] They also caused dogskins, 'fishe skynnes of
zeale,' calf, and other skins to be so dressed as to resemble 'right
Civill [_i.e._ Seville] and Spannish skynnes,' worth twice as much.
These skins were dressed 'with the powder of date stones and of gaule
and with French shomake that is nothinge like the Spannish shomake,
to give them a pretie sweete savor but nothinge like to the civile
skynnes, and the powder of theise is of veary smale price and the
powder of right Spannish shomake grounded in a mill is wourth xxx^s
the c^{lb} weight, which shomake is a kynd of brush, shrubb, or heath
in Spayne and groweth low by the ground and is swete like Gale[629]
in Cambridgshire and is cutt twise a yeare and soe dried and grounded
into powder by milles and dresseth all the Civile and Spannish skynnes
brought hither.'[630] To remedy these frauds there was a general
demand that tawed leather should be searched and sealed in the same way
as tanned, and in 1593 Edmund Darcy turned this to his own advantage
by obtaining a royal grant of the right to carry out such searching
and sealing. This was opposed by the leather-sellers, on the grounds
that it would interfere with the sale and purchase in country districts
if buyer and seller had to wait till the searcher could attend, and
that the proposed fees for sealing were exorbitant, amounting to from
a ninth to nearly a half of the value of the skins. They also said
that if a seal were put on, it would almost always be pared away,
washed out, or 'extincte by dying' before the leather reached the
consumer.[631] Upon examination the suggested fees were found to be too
large, and a table of the different kinds of leather and their values
was drawn up, and fees fixed accordingly:[632]—

  WHITE TAWED           VALUE                    FEE
  Sheep skins   7s.—3s.        the doz.        2d., 1d.
  Kid and fawn  4s. 6d.—1s. 8d.   "            2d., 1d.
  Lambs         4s. 4d.—1s. 8d.   "            2d., 1d.
  Horse[633]    5s.—2s. 6d.      each          2d.
  Dogs          4s.—1s. 6d.    the doz.        2d., 1d.
  Bucks         4s.—3s. 4d.      each          8d. the doz.
  Does          2s. 4d.—1s. 8d.   "            8d.    "
  Calf         12s.—4s.        the doz.        6d., 3d.
  Goat          2s. 6d. each—3s. 6d. the doz.  6d., 2d. each.

         OIL DRESSED                            VALUE          FEE
  Right Buffe[634]                       33s. 4d.—15s. each    7d.
  Counterfeit Buffe                      13s. 4d.—7s.      "   7d.
  Right Shamoise                         30s. the doz.         7d.
  Counterfeit "                          14s.    "             7d.
  Sheep       "                          8s.     "            3½d.
  Lamb        "                          6s.     "            3½d.
  Right Spannish skins[635]              30s.    "             7d.
  Counterfeit Spannish skins of goat
    and buck                             3 li.   "             7d.
  Counterfeit Spannish sheep skins       12s.    "            3½d.
  Right Cordovan skins                   40s.    "            12d.
  Seal skins dressed                     40s.    "             7d.
  Stagge skins,[636] English, Scottish,
    as big as buffyn, dressed like
    buffe                                12s. each             6d.
  Stag skins, Irish, dressed like buffe  3 li. the doz.       12d.
  Buck and doe, dressed like buffe       40s.    "            12d.
  Calf skins, in like sort               16s.    "             7d.

A number of trades, such as glovers, saddlers, pursemakers, girdlers,
and bottlemakers, used leather, but the most important class were the
shoemakers. They in turn were divided into a number of branches, at
the head of which stood the cordwainers, who derived their name from
having originally been workers of Cordovan leather, but were in actual
practice makers of the better class of shoes.[637] At the other end
were the cobblers, or menders of old shoes. Elaborate regulations were
made in London in 1409 to prevent these two classes trespassing on one
another's preserves.[638] The cobbler might clout an old sole with new
leather or patch the uppers, but if the boot required an entirely new
sole, or if a new shoe were burnt or broken and required a fresh piece
put in, then the work must be given to the cordwainer. A distinction
was also drawn at a much earlier date, in 1271,[639] between two
classes of cordwainers, the _allutarii_ and the _basanarii_, the
latter being those who used 'basan' or 'bazan,' an inferior leather
made from sheepskin. Neither was to use the other's craft, though the
_allutarius_ might make the uppers (_quissellos_) of his shoes of
bazan: to prevent any confusion the two classes were to occupy separate
positions in the fairs and markets. In 1320 we find eighty pairs of
shoes seized from twenty different persons, thirty-one pairs being
taken from Roger Brown of Norwich, and forfeited for being made of
bazan and cordwain mixed.[640] Fifty years later, in 1375, a heavy fine
was ordained for any one selling shoes of bazan as being cordwain,[641]
and a similar ordinance was in force at Bristol in 1408.[642] By
the London rules of 1271, no cordwainer was to keep more than eight
journeymen (_servientes_), and at Bristol in 1364 the shoemakers were
restricted to a single 'covenant-hynd,' who was to be paid 18d. a week
and allowed eight pairs of shoes yearly.[643] In the case of Bristol,
however, no limit is stated for the number of journeymen, who were paid
by piecework, the rates being, in 1364, 3d. a dozen for sewing, and
3d. for yarking; 3d. for making a pair of boots entirely, that is to
say, 1d. for cutting and 2d. for sewing and yarking; 2d. for cutting a
dozen pairs of shoes, namely 1d. for the overleathers and 1d. for the
soles, and a further 1d. for lasting the dozen shoes. The rates of pay
were still the same in 1408, though there are additional entries of
12d. for sewing, yarking, and finishing a dozen boots and shoes called
'quarter-schone,' and 7d. for sewing and yarking, with an extra 1½d.
for finishing a dozen shoes called 'course ware.'[644]

The sale of the finished articles was also an object of regulations:
in London in 1271, shoes might only be hawked in the district between
Corveiserstrete and Soperes Lane, and there only in the morning on
ordinary days, though on the eves of feast they might be sold in the
afternoon.[645] Leather laces also might not be sold at the 'eve
chepings.'[646] Possibly it was considered that bad leather might be
more easily passed off in a bad light, but the idea may simply have
been to prevent the competition of the pedlars and hawkers with the
shopkeepers. At Northampton, in 1452, the two classes of tradesmen
were separated, those who had shops not being allowed to sell also in
the market.[647] Northampton had not at this date begun to acquire
the fame which it earned during the seventeenth century as the centre
of the English boot trade, but regulations for the 'corvysers crafte'
there had been drawn up in 1402,[648] and much earlier, in 1266, we
find Henry III. ordering the bailiffs of Northampton to provide a
hundred and fifty pairs of shoes, half at 5d. and half at 4d. the
pair.[649] These were for distribution to the poor; and similar orders
in other years were usually executed in either London or Winchester:
no particular importance can be attached to this single order being
given to Northampton, as presumably any large town could have carried
out the order. So far as any town can be placed at the head of the
shoemaking industry, the distinction must be given to Oxford where the
cordwainers' gild was in existence early in the twelfth century, it
being reconstituted in 1131,[650] and its monopoly confirmed by Henry



Malt liquors have been from time immemorial the national drink of
England, but the ale of medieval times was quite different from the
liquor which now passes indifferently under the names ale or beer. It
was more of a sweet wort, of about the consistency of barley water.
Andrew Borde,[652] writing in the first half of the sixteenth century,
says: 'Ale is made of malte and water; and they the which do put any
other thynge to ale than is rehersed, except yest, barme or godesgood,
doth sofysticat theyr ale. Ale for an Englysshe man is a naturall
drynke. Ale must have these propertyes: it muste be fresshe and cleare,
it muste not be ropy nor smoky, nor must it have no weft nor tayle. Ale
should not be dronke under v dayes olde. Newe ale is unholsome for all
men. And sowre ale, and dead ale the which doth stand a tylt, is good
for no man. Barly malte maketh better ale then oten malte or any other
corne doth: it doth ingendre grose humoures; but yette it maketh a man

The supremacy of English ale was already established by the middle of
the twelfth century, that of Canterbury being particularly famous,[653]
and casks of ale were amongst the presents taken by Becket to the
French court on the occasion of his embassy in 1157.[654] At this time
it really deserved the title of 'the people's food in liquid form';
the consumption per head of population must have been enormous, the
ordinary monastic corrody, or allowance of food, stipulating for a
gallon of good ale a day, with very often a second gallon of weak ale.
It must be borne in mind that it was drunk at all times, taking the
place not only of such modern inventions as tea and coffee, but also
of water, insomuch that a thirteenth-century writer describing the
extreme poverty of the Franciscans when they first settled in London
(A.D. 1224) exclaims, 'I have seen the brothers drink ale so sour that
some would have preferred to drink water.'[655] Such was the importance
attached to ale that it was coupled with bread for purposes of legal
supervision, and the right to hold the 'assize of bread and ale' was
one of the earliest justicial privileges asserted by municipal and
other local courts. The Assize of Ale as recorded on the Statute Rolls
in the time of Henry III. fixed the maximum price of ale throughout
the kingdom on the basis of the price of malt, or rather of the corn
from which malt was made.[656] When wheat stood at 3s. or 3s. 4d. the
quarter, barley at 20d. to 2s., and oats at 16d., then brewers in towns
were to sell two gallons of ale for a penny, and outside towns three
or four gallons. And when three gallons were sold for a penny in a
town then four gallons should be sold for a penny in the country. If
corn rose a shilling the quarter, the price of ale might be raised a
farthing the gallon.[657] A later ordinance, issued in 1283, set the
price of the better quality of ale at 1½d.; and that of the weaker at
1d., and the commonalty of Bristol, fearing that they might be punished
if the brewers of the town broke this regulation, issued stringent
orders for its observance, infringement entailing the forfeiture of the
offender's brewery.[658]

A very casual examination of court rolls and other local records
is sufficient to convince the student that brewing was universal,
every village supplying its own wants, and that infringements of the
regulations by which the trade was supposed to be controlled were
almost equally universal. The same names are found, where any series of
rolls exists, presented at court after court for breaking the assize
in one way or another, and it is clear that a strict observance of the
laws was difficult, it being more profitable to break them and pay the
small fines extorted practically as licensing dues. At Shoreham in the
thirteenth century, the brewers, whose trade was particularly active
because of the numbers of foreigners who visited the port, paid 2½
marks yearly to escape the vexations of the manorial court,[659] and in
the same way the hundred of Shoyswell (in Sussex) paid a yearly fine
in order that the ale-wives (trade was largely in the hands of women)
might be excused attendance at the law-days.[660] In neither case,
however, can we suppose that the manorial control over the brewing
trade was appreciably relaxed, but rather that personal attendance
at the court, with its interruption of business, was dispensed with.
Besides these monetary payments, there were often payments in kind
due to the lord of the manor or borough. At Marlborough every public
brewery had to pay to the constable of the castle from each brew a
measure, known as 'tolsester,' prior to 1232, when this render of ale
was granted to the canons of St. Margaret's.[661] 'Tolsester' was also
paid to the castle of Chester,[662] and in Newark and Fiskerton.[663]
The 'sester' (_sextarius_) or 'cestron' was, in Coventry at any rate,
13 or 14 gallons.[664] Ale was always supposed to be sold, whether in
gross or retail, in measures of which the capacity had been certified
by the seal or stamp of the official appointed for the purpose.[665]
The list of standard measures kept at Beverley in 1423 shows a
potell, quart, pint, and gill of pewter, panyers, hopir, modius,
firthindal, piece, and half-piece of wood and a gallon, potell, third
and quart, also of wood.[666] Court Rolls, however, show that the use
of unstamped measures and the retailing of ale in pitchers and jugs
(_per ciphos et discos_) was of constant occurrence,[667] mainly, no
doubt, for the convenience of customers who brought their own jugs,
but also occasionally with intent to deceive, as in the case of Alice
Causton,[668] who in 1364 filled up the bottom of a quart measure with
pitch and cunningly sprinkled it with sprigs of rosemary,[669] for
which she had to 'play bo pepe thorowe a pillery.' It is interesting to
notice that at Torksey in 1345, if a woman was accused of selling ale
'against the assize,' she might clear herself by the oaths of two other
women, preferably her next-door neighbours.[670]

When a public brewer had made a fresh brew he had to send for the
official 'ale-conner' or 'taster,' or to signify that his services
were required by putting out in front of his house an 'ale stake,'
a pole with a branch or bush at the end: this was also used as the
universal sign of a tavern; and some of the London taverners, possibly
recognising that their liquor was not sufficiently good to 'need no
bush,' made their ale-stakes so long as to be dangerous to persons
riding in the street.[671] No ale might be sold until it had been
approved by the ale-conner. If the latter found the ale fit for
consumption but not of full quality, he might fix the price at which
it might be sold.[672] In Worcester the instructions to the ale-conner
were, 'You shall resort to every brewer's house within this city on
their tunning day and there to taste their ale, whether it be good
and wholesome for man's body, and whether they make it from time to
time according to the prices fixed. So help you God.'[673] There
seems reason for the pious ejaculation when we find that in Coventry
in 1520 there were in a total population of 6600 men, women, and
children, 60 public brewers.[674] When the ale was good the task must
have had its compensations, but when it was bad the taster must often
have wished to make the punishment fit the crime, as was done in the
case of a Londoner who sold bad wine, the offender being compelled
to drink a draught of the wine, the rest of which was then poured
over his head.[675] Our sympathy may in particular be extended to the
ale-tasters of Cornwall, where 'ale is starke nought, lokinge whyte
and thycke, as pygges had wrasteled in it.'[676] Oddly enough we find
mention in Domesday Book of forty-three _cervisiarii_ at Helstone in
Cornwall; they are usually supposed to be tenants who paid dues of ale,
but the term is clearly used in the description of Bury St. Edmunds
for brewers. In the sixteenth century, however, Borde[677] in an
unflattering dialect poem makes the Cornishman say:—

    'Iche cam a Cornyshe man, ale che can brew;
      It wyll make one to kacke, also to spew;
    It is dycke and smoky, and also it is dyn;
      It is lyke wash as pygges had wrestled dryn.'

To ensure the purity of the ale not only was the finished product
examined, but some care was taken to prevent the use of impure water,
regulations to prevent the contamination of water used by brewers,
or the use by them of water so contaminated, being common.[678] On
the other hand, owing to the large quantities of water required for
their business, they were forbidden in London,[679] Bristol,[680] and
Coventry[681] to use the public conduits. For the actual brewing, rules
were also laid down. In Oxford in 1449, in which year nine brewers
were said to brew weak and unwholesome ale, not properly prepared,
and not worth its price, but of little or no value, the brewers were
made to swear that they would brew in wholesome manner so that they
would continue to heat the water over the fire so long as it emitted
froth, and would skim the froth off, and that after skimming the new
ale should stand long enough for the dregs to settle before they sent
it out, Richard Benet in particular undertaking that his ale should
stand for at least twelve hours before he sent it to any hall or
college.[682] In London also casks when filled in the brewery were to
stand for a day and a night to work, so that when taken away the ale
should be clear and good.[683] This explains the regulation at Coventry
in 1421 that ale 'new under the here syve [hair sieve]' was to sell for
1¼d. the gallon, and that 'good and stale' for 1½d.[684] At Seaford
there was a third state, 'in the hoffe,' or 'huff,' which sold for

So far were the brewers regarded as the servants of the people that
not only was their brewing strictly regulated, but they were compelled
to brew even when they considered that new ordinances[686] or a rise
in the price of malt would make their trade unprofitable;[687] and in
1434 the brewers of Oxford were summoned to St. Mary's Church and there
ordered to provide malt, and to see to it that two or three brewers
brewed twice or thrice every week, and sent out their ale.[688] At
Gloucester,[689] in the sixteenth century, the brewers were expected to
give some kind of weak wort, possibly the scum or dregs of their brew,
to the poor to make up into a kind of very small beer, which must have
been something like the 'second washing of the tuns,' which formed the
perquisite of the under brewers at Rochester Priory.[690] At Norwich
barm or yeast was a similar subject of charity, and in 1468 it was set
forth that 'wheras berme otherwise clepid goddisgood, without tyme of
mynde hath frely be yoven or delyvered for brede whete malte egges or
othir honest rewarde to the value only of a farthyng at the uttermost
and noon warned [_i.e._ denied], because it cometh of the grete grace
of God; certeyn ... comon brewers ... for ther singler lucre and avayle
have nowe newely begonne to take monye for their seid goddisgood,'
charging a halfpenny or a penny for the least amount, therefore the
brewers were to swear that 'for the time ye or your wife exercise comon
brewing ye shall graunte and delyver to any person axyng berme called
goddisgood takyng for as moche goddisgood as shall be sufficient for
the brewe of a quarter malte a ferthyng at the moost,' provided that
they have enough for their own use, and that this do not apply to any
'old custom' between the brewers and bakers.[691]

About the end of the fourteenth century a new variety of malt liquor,
beer, was introduced from Flanders. It seems to have been imported
into Winchelsea as early as 1400,[692] but for the best part of a
century its use was mainly, and its manufacture entirely, confined
to foreigners. Andrew Borde,[693] who disapproved of it, says, 'Bere
is made of malte, of hoppes and water: it is a naturall drynke for a
Dutche man. And nowe of late dayes it is moche used in Englande to the
detryment of many Englysshe men; specyally it kylleth them the which be
troubled with the colycke and the stone and the strangulion; for the
drynke is a colde drynke; yet it doth make a man fat, and doth inflate
the bely, as it dothe appeare by the Dutche mens faces and belyes. If
the bere be well served and be fyned and not new it doth qualify the
heat of the lyver.' That, thanks to the large foreign settlement in
London, beer brewing soon attained considerable dimensions in the
city is evident from the fact that in 1418, when provisions were sent
to Henry V. at the siege of Rouen, 300 tuns of 'ber' were sent from
London, and only 200 tuns of ale, but the beer was valued at only
13s. 4d. the tun, while the ale was 20s.[694] About the middle of the
fifteenth century large quantities of hops were being imported at
Rye and Winchelsea, and in the church of the neighbouring village of
Playden may still be seen the grave of Cornelius Zoetmann, ornamented
with two beer barrels and a crossed mash-stick and fork.[695] A little
later we find beer being exported from the Sussex ports and also from
Poole,[696] which had long done a large trade in ale to the Channel

Such beer brewers as occur during the fifteenth century almost all
bear foreign names. For instance, in 1473, Thomas Seyntleger and John
Goryng of Southwark recovered heavy damages for theft against John Doys
of St. Botolph's-outside-Aldgate and Gerard Sconeburgh of Southwark,
'berebruers,' whose sureties were Godfrey Speryng and Edward Dewysse,
also 'berebruers.'[697] Probably in this case the theft was an illegal
seizure or distraint of goods for a debt for beer supplied, as although
most of the goods said to be stolen were armour and objects of value,
such as a book of Gower's poems and an illuminated _Sege of Troye_,
there were also ten barrels of 'sengilbere,' thirty-five barrels of
'dowblebere,' ten lastys of barrels and kilderkins, and two great sacks
for 'hoppys.' There was still a prejudice against beer, and in 1471,
at Norwich, the use of hops and 'gawle' in brewing was forbidden,[698]
while in 1519 the authorities at Shrewsbury prohibited the employment
of the 'wicked and pernicious weed, hops.'[699] In the same way, in
1531, the royal brewer was forbidden to use hops or brimstone, but
an Act of Parliament passed in the same year bore testimony to the
establishment of the industry by exempting alien brewers from the
penal statutes against foreigners practising their trades in England,
and also by allowing beer brewers to employ two coopers while ale
brewers might only employ one.[700] At the same time the barrel of
beer was fixed at thirty-six gallons, and that of ale at thirty-two,
the kilderkin and firkin being respectively half and quarter of those

From this time the brewing of beer steadily prospered, the Leakes
of Southwark[701] and other alien brewers amassing great riches,
English brewers following in their footsteps, and the taste for beer
spreading through the country so rapidly that in 1577 Harrison in his
_Description of England_ could speak contemptuously of the old ale as
thick and fulsome and no longer popular except with a few.

William Harrison, writing about 1577, says: 'In some places of England
there is a kind of drinke made of apples, which they call cider or
pomage, but that of peares is named pirrie, and both are ground and
pressed in presses made for the nonce. Certes, these two are verie
common in Sussex, Kent, Worcester, and other steads where these sorts
of fruits do abound, howbeit they are not their onelie drinke at
all times, but referred unto the delicate sorts of drinke.'[702] A
generation earlier Andrew Borde, whom we have already quoted for ale
and beer, wrote: 'Cyder is made of the juce of peeres, or of the juce
of apples; and other whyle cyder is made of both; but the best cyder
is made of cleane peeres, the which be dulcet; but the beste is not
praysed in physycke, for cyder is colde of operacyon, and is full of
ventosyte, wherfore it doth ingendre evyll humours and doth swage to
moche the naturall heate of man and doth let dygestyon and doth hurte
the stomacke; but they the whych be used to it, yf it be dronken in
harvyst it doth lytell harme.'

Andrew Borde makes no distinction between cider and perry. We find
mention of the latter in 1505, when a foreign ship entered Poole with
a cargo of apples, pears, etc., and '3 poncheons de pery,' valued at
10s.,[703] but references to perry are not numerous. Cider, on the
other hand, we find in constant demand from the middle of the twelfth
century onwards. It figures on the Pipe Rolls of Henry II.,[704] and
the contemporary historian and journalist, Gerald de Barri, alleged its
use by the monks of Canterbury instead of Kentish ale as an instance of
their luxury.[705] A little later, in 1212, the sale of cider is one of
the numerous sources of the income of the Abbey of Battle;[706] part of
this cider may have come from its estates at Wye, which produced a good
deal of cider during the fourteenth century.[707]

Possibly the industry was introduced from Normandy, from which
district large quantities of cider were imported into Winchelsea
about 1270,[708] and this might account for the hold which it took
upon Sussex. In the western part of the county, at Pagham, we find
mention of an apple mill and press having been wrongfully seized by
the escheator's officer in 1275,[709] and at the same place in 1313
the farmer of the archbishop's estates accounted for 12s. spent on
buying four casks in which to put cider, on repairing a ciderpress, and
on the wages of men hired to make cider.[710] It is, however, in the
Nonae Rolls of 1341 that the extent of the cider industry in Sussex
is most noticeable.[711] In no fewer than eighty parishes, of which
seventy-four were in West Sussex, the tithes of cider are mentioned as
part of the endowment of the church, and in another twenty-eight cases
the tithes of apples are entered. Moreover the value of these tithes
was very considerable, reaching 100s. in Easebourne, and as much as 10
marks (£6, 13s. 4d.) at Wisborough. In the last-named parish in 1385,
William Threle granted to John Pakenham and his wife certain gardens
and orchards, reserving to himself half the trees bearing fruit either
for eating or for cider (_mangable et ciserable_), in return for which
they were to render yearly a pipe of cider and a quarter of store
apples (_hordapplen_); he also retained the right of access to the
'wringehouse,' or building containing the press, and the right to use
their ciderpress for his fruit.[712]

Beyond an abundance of casual references to cider presses and to the
purchases and sale of cider, there is little to record of the industry
in medieval times; nor need we devote much attention to the manufacture
of wine in England. Domesday Book shows us that the great Norman lords
in many cases planted vines near their chief seats, and not many
years later William of Malmesbury spoke of the Vale of Gloucester as
planted more thickly with vineyards than any other part of England, and
producing the best grapes, from which a wine little inferior to those
of France was made. Vines continued to be grown by the great lords and
monasteries, but the wine was used entirely for their own consumption,
and in decreasing quantities. About 1500 an Italian visitor speaks
of having eaten English grapes, and adds 'wine might be made in the
southern parts, but it would be harsh,'[713] from which we may judge
that such wine making as had existed was at an end by the sixteenth



The control of industry is a subject for the treatment of which there
are materials sufficient for more than one large volume. I do not,
however, regret that I can devote comparatively small space to the
subject, as its principles are simple and admit of broad treatment.
There is, moreover, in the case of the student who is not a specialist,
a danger of obscuring the outlines with a multiplicity of detail.
And there is also the danger of selecting some puzzling and obscure
incident or enactment, due to local causes of which we are ignorant,
and using it as a basis for ingenious generalisations. Broadly
speaking, the Control of Industry may be said to be either External,
by parliamentary or municipal legislation, or Internal, by means of
craft gilds. These two sections again admit of subdivision according
as their objects are the protection of the consumer, the employer or
the workman. Nor can we entirely ignore legislation for purposes of
revenue—subsidies, customs, and _octroi_ dues.

Of industrial legislation by the King's Council, the predecessor of
Parliament, we find very little trace. The royal charters of the
twelfth century confirming or licensing craft gilds may be more justly
regarded as revenue enactments, their object being rather to secure a
certain annual return from the craft to which the royal protection was
granted than to exercise any control over the craft. The proclamation
in the early thirteenth century of the Assize of Cloth and of the
Assize of Bread and Ale may be considered to mark the beginning of a
national control of industry, though in each case existing regulations
were formally adopted rather than new rules imposed. The growth of the
towns and the rise of a wealthy merchant class during the reign of
Henry III. brought about the birth of Parliament, and naturally led to
a certain amount of trade legislation. But with trade—the distribution
of finished products by persons other than the producers—we are not
concerned. Edward III., thanks perhaps to his queen Philippa, from the
cloth land of Hainault, realised the possibilities of the English cloth
manufacture, and endeavoured to foster it by a series of statutes to
which reference has been made above. During his reign, in 1349, the
Black Death, that great landmark in medieval history, by reducing the
numbers of the craftsmen increased the market value of the survivors,
who at once demanded and obtained higher wages. Parliament retorted by
passing the Statute of Labourers,[714] according to which no smith,
carpenter, mason, tiler, shipwright, leather-worker, tailor, or other
artificer was to take higher wages than he had received three years
earlier, before the pestilence. Though this was legislation in favour
of the employer, it was not exactly a case of favouring the wealthy,
for by imposing a penalty on the giver of excessive wages as well as
upon the receiver, an attempt was made to prevent the small employer
being deprived of his workmen by richer rivals. The Act was, so far
as we can judge, inspired partly by fear that the capitalist might
control the sources of labour, and partly by fear that those sources
might get beyond control. Whatever its origin, the statute failed in
its expressed intention, and wages remained, as Thorold Rogers has
shown,[715] permanently higher. This was not due to any laxity in
applying the Act; for many years after it was passed justices were
appointed in every part of England to enforce it,[716] but the records
of their proceedings, as for instance in Somerset in 1360,[717] where
many hundreds of offenders are named, show that the workmen had no
hesitation in demanding, and found no difficulty in getting wages
higher than the law allowed. Wholesale imprisonment as a remedy for
scarcity of labour was scarcely satisfactory, and the small fines which
were inflicted proved no deterrent.

As the position of the artificer had improved after the Black Death,
so the crafts in general were assuming a greater importance in public
estimation, and from about 1380 onwards the regulation of industries
occupies an increasing amount of space on the Statute Rolls. With
their growing influence, most of the crafts began to make their voices
heard crying out for protection, which was usually given them with
a liberal hand. But, although the pernicious effects of protective
measures (deterioration of quality and rise of price) were to a large
extent checked by the control kept over quality and prices by the
national and municipal authorities, the consumer was sometimes roused
to action. One of the best instances of the struggle between public and
private interests is to be found in the case of the Yarmouth herring
fishery. Edward III. had granted to Yarmouth the monopoly of the sale
of herrings on the east coast during the season of the fishery. As a
consequence the price of herrings had risen enormously, and the king
was driven to cancel the privilege: the men of Yarmouth at once began
to pull the strings, and in 1378 recovered their monopoly, with the
same result as before. Once more the consumer made his voice heard, and
in 1382 the Yarmouth charter was revoked, only to be restored in 1385
on the ground that without protection of this kind Yarmouth would be

If a large number of parliamentary enactments were protective of the
producer, as for instance the prohibition in 1463 of the import of a
vast variety of goods, from silk ribbands to dripping-pans, and from
razors to tennis balls, including such incompatibles as playing cards
and sacring bells,[718] yet still more were protective of the consumer.
For one thing, of course, a single Act prohibiting certain imports
might protect a dozen classes of manufactures, while the denunciation
of one particular species of fraud would probably lead ingenious
swindlers to invent a succession of others, each requiring a separate
Act for its suppression. Sentimental admirers of the past are apt
to imagine that the medieval workman loved a piece of good work for
its own sake and never scamped a job. Nothing could be further from
the truth. The medieval craftsman was not called a man of craft for
nothing! He had no more conscience than a plumber, and his knowledge
of ways that are dark and tricks that are vain was extensive and
peculiar. The subtle craft of the London bakers, who, while making up
their customer's dough, stole a large portion of the dough under their
customers' eyes by means of a little trap-door in the kneading-board
and a boy sitting under the counter,[719] was exceptional only in its
ingenuity. Cloth was stretched and strained to the utmost and cunningly
folded to hide defects, a length of bad cloth would be joined on to a
length of superior quality, or a whole cheap cloth substituted for
the good cloth which the customers had purchased; inferior leather was
faked up to look like the best, and sold at night to the unwary; pots
and kettles were made of bad metal which melted when put on the fire;
and everything that could be weighed or measured was sold by false

Prior to the middle of the sixteenth century parliamentary attention
was mainly concentrated on the cloth trade, and the preambles to the
various statutes show that those in authority, including the more
responsible manufacturers, realised that honesty is the best policy in
the end. In 1390 it was pointed out that the frauds of the west country
clothiers had not only endangered the reputations, and even the lives,
of merchants who brought them for export, but had brought dishonour on
the English name abroad.[720] Two years later it was the reputation
of Guildford cloths that had been damaged by sharp practices.[721]
The worsteds of Norfolk had early come into favour on the Continent,
but in 1410 the Flemish merchants became exasperated at their bad
quality,[722] and thirty years later the foreign demand for worsteds
had been almost killed,[723] while in 1464 English cloth in general
was in grave disrepute, not only abroad, but even in its native land,
foreign cloth being largely imported.[724] To give them their due, the
gilds recognised the importance to their own interests of maintaining
a high standard of workmanship, and co-operated loyally with the
municipal authorities to that end.

Although we have classed the control of industries by municipal by-laws
as 'external,' and control by gild regulations as 'internal,' no
hard and fast line can really be drawn between the two. In England,
in contrast to the experience of many Continental states, the two
authorities worked together with very little friction, the craft
gilds recognising the paramount position of the merchant gild or town
council, and the latter, in turn, protecting the interest of the
gilds and using their organisation to control the various crafts. The
question of the origin of gilds is interesting rather than important,
and has given rise to much discussion. It is known that the Roman
crafts were organised into _collegia_, but while it is quite possible
that some of the trade gilds in Constantinople, and even in Italy and
Spain, might be able to trace their pedigrees back to Roman times,
it is more than improbable that there was any connection between the
Roman _collegia_ and the English craft gilds of the twelfth century.
The gilds of which we find mention in Anglo-Saxon records were clearly
fraternities of purely social and religious import. These gilds,
friendly societies for the support of religious observances benefiting
the souls of all the members, and for the mutual relief of such members
as had met with misfortune, survived the Conquest and increased
greatly, till by the end of the fourteenth century there could have
been hardly a village without at least one gild. It is natural to
suppose that in towns, where the choice of gilds was considerable,
there would be a tendency for members of the same trade to join the
same gild. The strength gained by such union under the common bond
of an oath to obey the same statutes and the same officers, and the
advantage of the Church's protection must soon have become obvious, and
as in 1378 we find the weavers of London forming a fraternity whose
ordinances are entirely of a religious nature and contain no reference
to the occupation of the members,[725] so we may well believe that many
of the early gilds, while apparently purely religious, were in fact
trade unions. Whatever may have been the methods in which craft gilds
came into existence, we find them increasing in numbers and influence
from the middle of the twelfth century onwards. Meanwhile, however,
the capitalists and wealthy traders by means of 'merchant gilds' and
similar bodies had so firmly established an oligarchic control over
the towns and boroughs that they were able to keep the craft gilds
in a subordinate position. Everywhere the town authorities, whether
they were mayor and council, or gild merchant, or governors, could
impose regulations upon the crafts, while such rules as the crafts
drew up for their own management were legal only if accepted by the
town council. The case of Coventry was typical, where, in 1421, the
mayor and councillors summoned the wardens of the crafts with their
ordinances. 'And the poyntes that byn lawfull good and honest for the
Cite be alowyd hem and all other thrown asid and had for none.'[726] In
the same way at Norwich in 1449, the mayor drew up a complete set of
ordinances for the crafts.[727] But although keeping a firm hand on the
gilds, and taking measures to protect the interests of the consumers
and of the town in general, the civic authorities left the gilds in
control of the internal affairs of their crafts. So that the craftsman
in his relations to another of the same trade was a gild brother, but
in his relations to all other men he was a townsman.

From the consumer's point of view the regulation of prices was perhaps
the most important problem. The price of raw material was too dependent
upon supply and demand to admit of much regulation, though in 1355
Parliament interfered to bring down the price of iron,[728] forbidding
its export, and ordering the Justices of Labourers (_i.e._ those
appointed to enforce the Statute of Labourers) to punish all who sold
it too high. The local authorities, civic and manorial, took constant
measures to prevent the artificial enhancement of what we may call raw
food stuffs, corn, fish, and meat, the 'regrator and forestaller,'
that is to say, the middleman, who intercepted supplies before they
reached the market and forced prices up for his own sole benefit,
being universally regarded as a miscreant.[729] The economists of that
period had not grasped the fact that the cleverness shown in buying
an article cheap and selling the same thing, without any further
expenditure of labour, dear, if done on a sufficiently large scale,
justifies the bestowal of the honour of knighthood or a peerage. In the
case of manufactured food stuffs, such as bread and ale, the price was
automatically fixed by the price of the raw material, and in general
prices of manufactures were regulated by the cost of the materials.
Even in the case of such artistic work as the making of waxen images,
it was considered scandalous that the makers should charge as much as
2s. the pound for images when wax was only 6d. the pound, and in 1432
the waxchandlers were ordered not to charge for workmanship more than
3d. the pound over the current price of wax.[730] The principle that
the craftsman should be content with a reasonable profit, and not turn
the casual needs of his neighbours to his own benefit is constantly
brought out in local regulations, as, for instance, in London in 1362,
when in consequence of the damage wrought by a great storm tiles were
in great demand, and the tilers were ordered to go on making tiles and
selling them at the usual prices.[731]

The question of prices, which were thus so largely composed of a
varying sum for material, and a fixed sum for workmanship, is very
intimately connected with the question of wages.[732] The medieval
economist seems to have accepted the Ruskinian theory that all
men engaged in a particular branch of trade should be paid equal
wages—with the corollary that the better workman would obtain the more
employment—as opposed to the modern practice of payment according to
skill, which results in the greater employment of the bad workman
because he is cheap.[733] There were, of course, grades in each
profession, as master or foreman, workman, and assistant or common
labourer, but within each grade the rate of payment was fixed—at least
within the jurisdiction of any gild or town authority[734]—unless the
work was of quite exceptional nature, as, for instance, the making
of carved stalls for the royal chapel at Westminster in 1357, where
the rates of pay were almost double those of ordinary workmen.[735]
Wages were at all times paid on the two systems of piece-work and time,
and the hours, which varied in the different trades, and at different
places and periods, were as a rule long.[736] For the building trade at
Beverley in the fifteenth century work began in summer (from Easter to
15th August) at 4 A.M., and continued till 7 P.M.; at 6 A.M. there was
a quarter of an hour's interval for refreshment, at 8 half an hour for
breakfast, at 11 an hour and a half to dine and sleep, and at 3 half
an hour for further refreshment. During the winter months they worked
from dawn till dusk, with half an hour for breakfast at 9 o'clock, an
hour for dinner at noon, and a quarter of an hour's interval at 3.
These hours agree fairly well with those laid down by Parliament in
1496,[737] which were, from mid-March to mid-September, start at 5 and
stop work between 7 and 8, with half an hour for breakfast and an hour
and a half for dinner and sleep (the siesta was only to be taken from
beginning of May to end of July, during the rest of the time there was
to be an hour for dinner and half an hour for lunch—'nonemete'). The
blacksmiths of London worked, at the end of the fourteenth century,
from dawn till 9 P.M., except during November, December, and January,
when their hours were from 6 A.M. to 8 P.M.[738] In the case of the
Cappers' gild at Coventry the journeymen's hours were in 1496 from 6
A.M. to 6 P.M.;[739] but in 1520 they had been increased, being from
6 A.M. to 7 P.M. in winter, and from 5 A.M. to 7 P.M. in summer.[740]
Wages, of course, when paid by the day, varied in winter and summer,
if we may use these terms for the short and long days. In London the
determining dates were Easter and Michaelmas,[741] at Bristol Ash
Wednesday and St. Calixtus (14th October),[742] and in the case of the
workmen at Westminster the Purification (2nd February) and All Saints
(1st November), giving an exceptionally short winter period.[743]

Against the long hours we have to set the comparative frequency of
holidays. On Sundays and all the greater festivals, as well as a
variable number of local festivals, such as the dedication day of the
Church, no work was done, and on Saturdays and the days preceding
festivals work as a rule ceased at four o'clock or earlier. This early
closing was enforced at Norwich[744] in 1490, on the representation of
the shoemakers that many of their journeymen were 'greatly disposed to
riot and idelnes, whereby may succede grete poverte, so that dyuers
days wekely when them luste to leve ther bodyly labour till a grete
parte of the weke be almost so expended and wasted ... also contrary to
the lawe of god and good guydyng temporall they labour quikly toward
the Sondaye and festyuall dayes on the Saterdayes and vigils fro iiij
of the clock at after none to the depnes and derknes of the nyght
foloweng. And not onely that synfull disposicion but moche warse so
offendyng in the morownynges of such festes and omyttyng the heryng of
the dyvyne servyce.' In the case of the founders in London,[745] while
no ordinary metal work, such as turning, filing, or engraving, might be
done after noon had rung, an exception had to be made in the case of a
casting which was actually in progress; such work might be completed
after time, as otherwise the metal would have to be remelted, even if
it were not spoilt by the interruption. So far as Sundays and feasts
were concerned no work was permitted except in the case of farriers,
who were expected to shoe the horses of strangers passing through the
town.[746] A good many shops were open on the Sunday morning until
seven o'clock, especially shoemakers,[747] who in Bristol were allowed
at any time of the day to serve 'eny knyght or Squyer or eny other
straunger goyng on her passage or journee, merchant or maryner comyng
fro the see,' or, during the six Sundays of harvest, any one else who
required boots.[748] Markets during the early part of the thirteenth
century were often held on Sundays, but most of these were soon shifted
on to week days; and fairs were usually associated with a saint's day,
but a fair was an amusement at which the ordinary craftsman was an
interested spectator, though the chapmen and merchants were kept busy
enough. The London rule that Saturdays and vigils counted for wages
as complete days, but that no payment was to be made for the Sundays
and feast days[749] was generally observed, but in the case of workmen
engaged in building operations at Westminster and the Tower the custom
was that wages should be paid for alternate feast days, but not for any

Rules against working at night or after dark are constantly found in
all classes of industries, 'by reason that no man can work so neatly
by night as by day.'[751] There was the additional reason that in many
trades night work was a source of annoyance to neighbours. This was
certainly the case with the blacksmiths,[752] and was probably the
cause of the enactment by the Council in 1398, that no leather worker
should work by night with hammer and shears, knife or file, at making
points or lanyers (laces or thongs).[753] Worst of all these offenders
were the spurriers,[754] for 'many of the said trade are wandering
about all day without working at all at their trade; and then when
they have become drunk and frantic, they take to their work, to the
annoyance of the sick and all their neighbourhood.... And then they
blow up their fires so vigorously that their forges begin all at once
to blaze, to the great peril of themselves and of all the neighbourhood
round.' Nuisances of this nature the authorities put down by stringent
by-laws, in the same way that they banished offensive occupations, such
as the flaying of carcases, the dressing of skins, and the burning of
bricks, outside the walls.[755]

A third reason for the prohibition of night work was that candlelight
not only made good work more difficult, but made bad work more easy.
Not only was it easy to pass off faked leather and other deceitful
goods by the uncertain, artificial light, which was one of the causes
that moved the Council to try to put down 'evechepyngs,'[756] or
evening markets, in London, but it also enabled fraudulent workmen
to avoid the eye of the vigilant searcher or inspector.[757] All
such evasion and secrecy was rightly regarded as suspicious, and
at Bristol, to take a single instance, weavers had to work at looms
visible from the public street, and not in cellars or upstair
rooms,[758] the better class of furs had also to be worked in
public,[759] and ale might not be sold in private.[760] The medieval
system of search or inspection was very thorough, in theory and, so far
as we can judge, in practice also. The search of weights and measures,
provisions, cloth, and tanned leather usually belonged to the mayor or
equivalent borough officer, or in country districts to the manorial
lord, but usually with other manufactures, and very often in the case
of cloth and leather, the mayor deputed the duty of search to members
of the craft gilds elected and sworn for that purpose. They could
inspect the wares either in the workshops, or when exposed for sale,
and seize any badly made articles. The forfeited goods were either
burnt or given to the poor,[761] and the offending craftsman fined, set
in the pillory, or, if an old offender, banished from the town.[762]
To facilitate tracing the responsibility for bad work, weavers,
fullers, hatters, metal workers, tile-makers, and other craftsmen,
including bakers, were ordered to put their private trademarks on their

The process of search must have been much simplified by the custom
so prevalent in medieval towns of segregating or localising the
trades,[764] so that all the goldsmiths dwelt in one quarter, the
shoemakers in another, the clothiers in a third, and so forth. How far
this was compulsory, and how far a mere matter of custom it is hard
to say, but for those who in addition to or instead of shops sold by
barrows or chapmen, definite districts were usually assigned. So the
London shoemakers might only send out their goods to be hawked between
Sopers Lane and the Conduit, and then only in the morning,[765] and
at Bristol smiths were not to send ironware through the town for sale
in secret places, but either to sell 'in here howse opynlych' or else
at their assigned place by the High Cross, where also all strangers
coming with 'eny penyworthes yclepid smyth ware' were to stand.[766]
The principle of segregation was carried out still more strictly, as
we might expect, in the markets. A list of the stalls in the provision
market at Norwich in 1397[767] shows forty butchers' stalls together,
followed by forty-five fishmongers and twenty-eight stalls in the
poulterers' market, of which nine were used for fresh fish; then there
were fifteen shops belonging to the corporation in the wool-market,
and the great building of the 'Worthsted Celd,' to which all worsteds
sent in from the country had to be brought.[768] Other trades were
localised in the same way, and the two divisions of leather-workers,
the cordwainers and the workers of the inferior 'bazan' or sheep's
leather, were bidden each to keep to their own set of stalls to prevent
confusion and fraud.[769]

As the trades were kept each to its own district, so was the craftsman
restricted to his own trade. By a law issued in 1364 artificers were
obliged to keep to one 'mystery' or craft,[770] an exception being
made in favour of women acting as brewers, bakers, carders, spinners,
and workers of wool and linen and silk,—the versatility of woman, the
'eternal amateur,' being thus recognised some five centuries and a
half before Mr. Chesterton rediscovered it. Later statutes forbade
shoemakers, tanners, and curriers to infringe on each other's province.
It is true that at Bristol[771] we find a puzzling regulation that
if a man who had not been apprenticed to tanning practises the craft
to which he was apprenticed and also uses the craft of tanning, he
shall not pay anything to the tanner's craft but to his own craft and
his 'maistier servaunt de tanneres-crafte' shall discharge the dues,
etc. of a master of the craft. But probably this belongs to the later
fifteenth century after the rise of capitalist employers; if not, it
is certainly exceptional, the general tendency being to keep trades,
and more especially the allied trades, separate, in order presumably
to avoid the growth of 'combines' and monopolies. For this reason
fishmongers and fishermen were forbidden to enter into partnership in
London,[772] because the dealers, knowing the needs of the city, would
be able to manipulate supplies and keep up prices. The case against
allowing all the branches of one trade to come under single control is
vividly set out in the case of the Coventry iron workers in 1435:[773]—

'Be hit known to you that but yif certen ordenaunses of Craftes withein
this Cite, and in speciall the craft of wirdrawerz, be takon good hede
to, hit is like myche of the kynges pepull and in speciall poor chapmen
and Clothemakers in tyme comeng shallon be gretely hyndered; and as
hit may be supposed the principall cause is like to be amonges hem
that han all the Craft in her own hondes, That is to say, smythiers,
brakemen,[774] gurdelmen and cardwirdrawers; for he that hathe all
these Craftes may, offendyng his consience, do myche harme. First in
the smethyng, yif he be necligent and mysrule his Iron that he wirkithe
be onkynd hetes or elles in oder maner, the whiche when hit is so
spilt is not to make no maner chapmannes ware of, Neverthelater for
his own eese he will com to his Brakemon and sey to hym:—"Here is a
ston of rough-iron the whiche must be tendurly cherysshet." And then
the Brakemon most nedes do his maisters comaundement and dothe all
that is in hym; and then when the Brakemon hathe don his occupacion,
that that the mayster supposithe wilnot in no wyse be holpen atte
gurdell, then hit shall be solde for hoke wire. And when hit is made
in hokes and shulde serve the Fisher to take fisshe, when comythe hit
to distresse, then for febulness hit all-to brekithe and thus is the
Fissher foule disseyved to hys grete harme. And then that wire that
the mayster supposithe will be cherisshed atte gurdell, he shall com
to his girdelmon and sey to him as he seid to the brakemon:—"Lo, here
is a stryng or ij that hathe ben mysgoverned atte herthe; my brakemon
hathe don his dener, I prey the do now thyne." And so he dothe as his
maister biddethe hyme. And then he gothe to his cardwirdrawer and
seithe the same to hym, and he dothe as his maister biddithe hym.
And then when the Cardmaker hathe bought this wire thus dissayvabely
wrought he may not know hit tille hit com to the crokyng,[775] and then
hit crachithe and farithe foule; so the cardmaker is right hevy therof
but neverthelater he sethe because hit is cutte he must nedes helpe
hymself in eschuing his losse, he makithe cardes therof as well as he
may. And when the cardes ben solde to the clothemaker and shuldon be
ocupied, anon the teeth brekon and fallon out, so the clothemaker is
foule disseyved. Wherfore, sirs, atte reverens of God in fortheryng of
the kynges true lege peapull and in eschueng of all disseytes, weithe
this mater wysely and ther as ye see disseyte is like to be, therto
settithe remedy be your wyse discressions. For ye may right welle know
be experience that and the smythier and the brakemen wern togider, and
no mo, and the cardwirdrawers and the middlemen[776] togider, and no
mo, then hit were to suppose that ther shuld not so myche disseyvaball
wire be wrought and sold as ther is; for and the craft were severed
in the maner as hit is seide above, then the cardwirdrawers and the
myddelmen most nedes bye the wire that they shull wirche of the
smythier, and yif the cardwirdrawer were ones or thies disseyved with
ontrewe wire he wolde be warre and then wold he sey unto the smythier
that he bought that wire of:—"Sir, I hadde of you late badde wire. Sir,
amend your honde, or, in feith, I will no more bye of you." And then
the smythier, lest he lost his custumers, wolde make true goode; and
then, withe the grase of Godd, the Craft shulde amend and the kynges
peapull be not disseyved with ontrewe goode.'

The interests of the craftsmen, or producers, were as a whole opposed
to those of the consumers. It is true that they co-operated, as we
have seen, with the local authorities in maintaining the standard of
workmanship, because the craft that did not do so would soon find
itself 'defamed and out of employ,'[777] but it was obviously to
their interest to keep up prices by the limitation of competition
and of output. Their success in restricting competition varied very
greatly in different trades and places. In Lincoln, for instance,
no tiler might come to work in the town without joining the tilers'
gild,[778] while in Worcester, so far was this from being the case,
that the tilers were not even allowed to form a gild at all.[779] As
a whole the gilds had the townsmen behind them in their opposition
to outsiders. The traditional attitude of the Englishman towards a
stranger has always been to 'heave half a brick at him,' and as far
back as 1421 the authorities at Coventry had to order 'that no man
throw ne cast at noo straunge man, ne skorn hym.'[780] The sense of
civic, or even parochial, patriotism was more developed in those times,
and it was generally felt that while artificers ought not to work for
outsiders unless there was no work to be had within the town, on the
other hand, employers ought to give the preference to their fellow
townsmen and not send work out of the town.[781] As to encouraging
strangers to settle within their walls, sentiment varied in different
places. At Beverley in 1467 it was enacted that any person might come
and set up in his craft without any payment for the first year—except
a contribution towards the church light and the yearly pageant
maintained by his craft—but after that he should pay yearly 12d. to
the town and 12d. to his craft until he became a burgess and member of
the gild.[782] But the attitude of Bristol, where no one might weave
unless he became a burgess (and a gild brother) was more typical of
the general feeling.[783] There was, however, at Bristol a rule that
a stranger who had come to the town on a visit, or to wait for a ship
might work at his trade for his support during his stay.[784] This rule
did not hold good, apparently, at Hereford, as a London tailor, whose
master had allowed him during an outbreak of plague to go and stay
with relations in Hereford, was imprisoned by the wardens of the local
tailors' gild because he did some tailoring for the cousin with whom
he was staying, in order to pay for his keep.[785] At Norwich, by the
ordinances of 1449, no 'foreign dweller' might have any apprentices or
even a hired servant unless the latter was absolutely necessary for
his business, and in that case at the end of a year he must either 'buy
himself a freeman,' or, if too poor to buy the franchise, 'live under
tribute to the sheriffs.'[786]

One advantage that the resident manufacturer had over the foreigner
was that his wares entered the local market without the handicap of
paying customs or _octroi_ dues. Long lists of these dues on every
conceivable kind of merchandise, from bears and monkeys to peppercorns,
are to be found in the records of many towns,[787] more especially
seaports. It is true that the burgesses of many towns, and the tenants
of many religious houses were theoretically exempt from paying these
dues, but it is probable that the delay and worry of proving such
exemption was often felt to be a greater loss than payment. So far as
the alien importer was concerned, although there was no such thing
as a protective duty (the import of an article was either prohibited
altogether or unrestrained), he might find himself called upon to pay
a higher, even a double, import duty on all his merchandise. This
policy of discriminating against the alien, combined with the continual
harassing of the unfortunate foreign merchants, induced many alien
settlers to take out letters of naturalisation, and the long lists of
these in the fifteenth century[788] show how numerous and widespread
these aliens were. Coming for the most part from Flanders and the
Low Countries, they settled not only in London and the other great
towns, but in the smaller market towns and villages throughout the
country, exercising their various trades as goldsmiths, clothmakers,
leather-workers, and so forth. In London in particular the foreign
element was very large from an early date and, as a result of the
invitation issued by Edward III. to foreign clothworkers and their
exemption from the control of the native clothiers' gild, we have
the exceptional occurrence of a gild of alien weavers. This gild,
itself divided by the rivalries and quarrels of the Flemings and
Brabanters,[789] was unpopular with the native weavers because, while
competing with them for trade, they did not share in the farm or rent
paid by the native gild to the king, and in general there was a strong
feeling against the aliens in London, which was fanned by the craft
gilds and occasionally culminated in rioting, the murder of some of the
foreigners and the plunder of their shops.

While the gilds were constantly coming into conflict with outside
interests, there was also an internal conflict of interests between
the masters, the hired servants, or journeymen, and the intermediate
class of apprentices. This becomes more noticeable towards the end of
our period. While there was occasional friction between employer and
employed even before the second half of the fourteenth century, it was
during the next two centuries that the rise of the capitalist, coupled
with the descent of the small independent masters into the position of
journeymen, brought about strained relations between the two classes.
In the earlier period in most of the trades there was reasonable
prospect for any craftsman that he would be able to set up as an
independent master, but as time went on the difficulty of attaining
independence increased. The growing attraction of town and craft life
as compared with agriculture swelled the ranks of the craftsmen,
and the gilds, whose management was in the hands of the masters,
endeavoured to limit competition by raising their entrance fees and
more especially by raising their 'upsets,' that is to say the fees
which had to be paid by a craftsman upon setting up as a master. One
of the earliest instances of this restriction of competition occurred
in connection with the weavers' gild of London, concerning whom it was
reported in 1321 that they had during the last thirty years reduced
the number of looms in the city from 380 to 80.[790] In this case the
object was to benefit all the members of the gild at the expense of
the public, and not to protect existing masters from rivals within
the gild, and the method employed was therefore the raising of the fee
for entrance to the gild. This same weavers' gild was so far ahead of
its times that it had instituted the modern trade unions' restriction
of output, no member being allowed to weave a cloth in less than four
days, though such a cloth could easily be woven in three if not in two
days.[791] But this was a most exceptional move, if not absolutely

How far the desire to restrict output was at the bottom of regulations
forbidding the employment of more than a strictly limited number of
apprentices and journeymen, and how far such prohibitions were inspired
by fear of the monopolisation of labour by capitalists it is difficult
to say. Probably the dread of the capitalist was the chief incentive
for such regulations, which are very numerous; the cobblers of Bristol,
for instance, being restricted to a single 'covenaunt hynd,'[792]
and the cappers of Coventry allowed only two apprentices, neither of
whom might be replaced if he left with his master's leave before the
end of his term of seven years.[793] The same principle of fair play
between employers led to the ordaining of heavy penalties for taking
away another man's servant, or employing any journeyman who had not
fulfilled his engagement with his previous master, and to the strict
prohibition of paying more than the fixed maximum wages. As this last
provision was sometimes got over by the master's wife giving his
servants extra gratuities and gifts, this practice was forbidden at
Bristol in 1408, except that the master might at the end of a year
give 'a courtesy' of 20d. to his chief servant.[794] As the unfair
securing of labour by offering high wages was forbidden, so the use of
the cheap labour of women was as a rule regarded with disfavour. The
fullers of Lincoln were forbidden to work with any woman who was not
the wife or maid of a master,[795] and the 'braelers,' or makers of
braces, of London, in 1355, laid down 'that no one shall be so daring
as to set any woman to work in his trade, other than his wedded wife
or his daughter.'[796] A century later the authorities at Bristol went
even further, for finding that the weavers were 'puttyn, occupien
and hiren ther wyfes, doughtours and maidens, some to weve in ther
owne lombes and some to hire them to wirche with othour persons of
the said crafte,' whereby many 'likkely men to do the Kyng service
in his warris, ... and sufficiently lorned in the seid crafte ...
gothe vagraunt and unoccupied,' absolutely forbade the practice in
future, making an exception only in the case of wives already so
employed.[797] Of child labour we hear very little, one of the few
notices being an order on their behalf made, suitably enough, by
Richard Whittington in 1398, that whereas some 'hurers' (makers of fur
caps) send their apprentices and journeymen and children of tender age
down to the Thames and other exposed places, amid horrible tempests,
frosts, and snows, to scour caps, to the very great scandal of the
city, this practice is to cease at once.[798]

Apprenticeship was from quite early times the chief, and eventually
became the only, path to mastership. The ordinances of the London
leather-dressers,[799] made in 1347, and those of the pewterers,[800]
made the next year, give as alternative qualifications for reception
into the craft the completion of a period of apprenticeship, or
the production of good testimony that the applicant is a competent
workman. A similar certificate of ability was required of the dyers at
Bristol,[801] in 1407, even if they were apprentices, but as a rule the
completion of a term of apprenticeship was a sufficient qualification.
That term might vary considerably, but the custom of London, which held
good in most English boroughs, eventually fixed it at a minimum of
seven years. This would often be exceeded, and we find, for instance,
a boy of fourteen apprenticed to a haberdasher in 1462 for the rather
exceptional term of twelve years; but in this case the master had
undertaken to provide him with two years' schooling, the first year
and a half to learn 'grammer,' and the next half year to learn to
write.[802] In a list of apprentices who took the oath of fealty to
the king and the city at Coventry in 1494, the terms range from five
to nine years, though the majority were for seven years; during the
first years of their terms, they were to receive nominal wages, usually
12d. a year, and for their last year more substantial rewards, varying
from 6s. 8d. to 25s.[803] The oath to obey the city laws serves as a
reminder that the apprentice, not being a full member of the gild, was
under the charge of the city authorities to some extent. Indentures of
apprenticeship had as a rule to be enrolled by the town clerk,[804] and
in London the transfer of an apprentice from one employer to another
was not legal unless confirmed by the city chamberlain.[805] Besides
having his indentures enrolled, and paying a fee to the craft gild,
the apprentices, or rather his friends, had to give a bond for his
good behaviour. The rights of the apprentice, on the other hand, were
probably always guarded by a right of appeal to the wardens of his
craft: this was certainly the case at Coventry in 1520, the masters
of the cappers being obliged to go once a year to all the shops of
their craft and call the apprentices before them, and if any apprentice
complained three times against his master for 'insufficient finding,'
they had power to take him away and put him with another master.[806]
As a master's interest in his apprentice was transferable to another
master, so it was possible for an apprentice to buy up the remainder
of his term after he had served a portion. He could not, however,
be received into his gild as a master until the whole of his term
had expired,[807] and although it would seem that he could set up in
business by himself,[808] probably he might not employ workmen, and
as a rule he no doubt spent the unexpired portion of his term as a

The journeymen, working by the day (_journée_), either with their
masters, or in their own houses, as opposed to the covenant servants,
who were hired by the year,[809] and lived in their employer's house,
constituted the fluid element in the industrial organisation, and were
composed partly of men who had served a full apprenticeship but lacked
funds or enterprise to set up independently, and partly of others
who had either served only a brief apprenticeship, or had picked up
their knowledge of the craft in other ways.[810] Although more or
less free to work for what employers they would, practically all gild
regulations contained a stringent order against the employment of
any journeyman who had broken his contract or left his late master
without good reason.[811] In the matter of home work rules varied;
the journeymen of the wiredrawers and allied crafts at Coventry in
1435 were allowed to work at home and might not be compelled to come
to their masters' houses,[812] but in London, in 1271, the shoemakers
were not allowed to give out work, as the journeymen were found to go
off with the goods.[813] The vagaries of this class, indeed, caused
much heart-searching to their masters. Instead of being content with
their holidays, and accepting their twelve hours' working day, they
had a pernicious habit of going off on the spree for two or three
days, and amusing themselves by playing bowls, 'levyng ther besynes at
home that they shuld lyve by';[814] and the Coventry employers, with
that touching regard for widows and orphans (or in this case wives
and children) which has always distinguished the English capitalists,
forbade them to frequent inns on workdays, 'as it is daylye seen that
they whiche be of the pooreste sorte doo sytte all daye in the alehouse
drynkynge and playnge at the cardes and tables and spende all that
they can gett prodigally upon themselfes to the highe displeasure of
God and theyre owne ympovershynge, whereas if it were spente at home
in theyre owne houses theyre wiffes and childerne shulde have parte
therof.'[815] Not having any voice in the craft gilds the journeymen
were continually forming 'yeomen gilds,' 'bacheleries,' and other
combinations, which the masters' gilds usually endeavoured to suppress.
In 1387 the London journeymen cordwainers formed a fraternity[816]
and endeavoured to secure it by obtaining papal protection; nine
years later the mayor and aldermen put down a fraternity formed by
the yeomen of the saddlers, at the same time ordering the masters to
treat their men well in future,[817] and in 1415 the wardens of the
tailors complained that their journeymen had combined, living together
in companies in particular houses, where they held assemblies, and
adopting a livery, whereupon the council, in view of the danger to the
peace of the city from such an uncontrolled and irresponsible body,
forbade the combination and ordered the journeymen to live under the
governance of the wardens of the craft.[818] The fraternity of the
yeomen tailors, however, was not so easily suppressed, and is found
two years later petitioning for leave to hold its yearly assembly at
St. John's, Clerkenwell.[819] In the same way at Coventry, when the
journeymen tailors' gild of St. Anne was suppressed in 1420, they
simply changed their patron and reappeared as the gild of St. George,
against which measures were taken in 1425.[820] The charges against the
yeomen saddlers in 1396 were, that they had so forced wages up that
whereas the masters could formerly obtain a workman for from 40s. to 5
marks yearly and his board they had now to pay 10 or 12 marks or even
£10, and that also business was dislocated by the bedel coming round
and summoning the journeymen to attend a service for the soul of a
deceased brother. The clashing of religious observances with business
led to an order at Coventry in 1528 that the journeymen dyers should
make no assemblies at weddings, brotherhoods, or burials, nor make any
'caves' (_i.e._ combinations), but use themselves as servants, and as
no craft.[821] This was practically an enforcement of an order issued
ten years earlier, that no journeymen should form 'caves' without
the licence of the mayor and the master of their craft.[822] Such
a licence would not as a rule be granted, unless the masters were
unusually broadminded, or the journeymen exceptionally strong. There
was, however, at Coventry a recognised fraternity of journeymen weavers
in 1424; their wardens paid 12d. to the chief master for every brother
admitted; each brother gave 4d. towards the cost of the craft pageant,
and the chief master contributed towards the journeymen's altar lamp,
while both masters and servants held their feasts together.[823]
At Bristol also there was a gild of journeymen connected with the
shoemakers' craft, sharing with the craft gild in the expenses of
church lights and feasts.[824]

The success of the London saddlers in forcing wages up is a remarkable
tribute to the power of union; and we find that during the fourteenth
century the strike was well known, and when a master would not agree
with his workmen the other workmen of the craft would come out and
cease work until the dispute was settled.[825] This practice was, of
course, forbidden, but we may doubt with what success. At the same time
the masters were pretty well unanimous in forbidding the employment of
a craftsman whose dispute with his master had not been settled. So far
as the offence of detaining wages due was concerned, penalties were
often laid down in gild ordinances,[826] while in the case of other
disputes the matter would be settled by the council or court of the
craft.[827] The existence of a craft gild practically implied a court
before which disputes between members of the craft or between craftsmen
and customers were tried.[828] Such courts were at first directly under
the borough authorities, the mayor or his deputies presiding over the
weekly courts of the weavers in London in 1300,[829] and although they
seem to have attained a greater degree of independence there seems
usually to have been a right of appeal to the borough court.[830] It
was probably to avoid this that some of the Coventry masters took to
impleading craftsmen in spiritual courts, on the ground that they had
broken their oaths in not keeping the gild rules.[831]

Too much attention must not be given to the quarrelsome side of
the gilds, for they were essentially friendly societies for mutual
assistance. One of the rules of the London leather-dressers was that
if a member should have more work than he could complete, and the work
was in danger of being lost the other members should help him.[832]
So also, if a mason wished to undertake a contract he got four or six
responsible members of the craft to guarantee his ability, and if he
did not do the work well they had to complete it.[833] Again, if a
farrier undertook the cure of a horse and was afraid that it would
die, he might call in the advice of the wardens of his company, but if
he was too proud to do so and the horse died, he would be responsible
to the owner.[834] The rule of the weavers at Hull, that none should
let his apprentice work for another[835] was not an infringement of
the principle of mutual aid, but was designed to prevent evasion
of the order that none might have more than two apprentices; the
fact that a fine was only exacted in the event of the apprentice so
working for more than thirteen days actually points to the loan of
temporary assistance being allowed. While help was thus given to the
craftsman when in full employ, a still more essential feature of
the gilds was their grant of assistance to members who had fallen
ill or become impoverished through no fault of their own.[836] Nor
did their benevolence end with the poor craftsman's death, for they
made an allowance to his widow and celebrated Masses for the repose
of his soul. The religious element in the organisation of gilds,
though very strong, does not affect us very much in considering
their industrial side, but there is one indirect effect which must be
referred to. The custom of all the gilds and fraternities going in
procession to the chief church of their town on certain feast days,
carrying their banners and symbols, gradually developed during the
fifteenth century until each gild endeavoured to outshine its rivals
in pageantry. Payments towards the pageants were exacted from all
members of the trade even if they were not members of the gild, but
in spite of this the expenses were so great that the smaller gilds
were almost ruined, and consequently we find during the latter half of
the fifteenth century schemes to amalgamate, or at any rate to unite
for the support of a common pageant, many of the smaller mysteries
or crafts. An account of a pageant at Norwich[837] about 1450 is
interesting as showing the numbers of these lesser crafts, and the
way in which they were combined. Twelve pageants were presented: (1)
The Creation of the World, by the mercers, drapers, and haberdashers.
(2) Paradise, by the grocers and raffemen. (3) 'Helle Carte,' by the
glaziers, stainers, scriveners, parchemyners, the carpenters, gravers,
colermakers, and wheelwrights. (4) Abel and Cain, by the shearmen,
fullers, 'thikwollenwevers,' and coverlet makers, the masons and
limeburners. (5) 'Noyse shipp' (Noah's Ark), by the bakers, brewers,
innkeepers, cooks, millers, vintners, and coopers. (6) Abraham and
Isaac, by the tailors, broderers, the reders and tylers. (7) Moses
and Aaron with the children of Israel and Pharaoh and his knights,
by the tanners, curriers, and cordwainers. (8) David and Goliath, by
the smiths. (9) The Birth of Christ, by the dyers, calenders, the
goldsmiths, goldbeaters, saddlers, pewterers, and braziers. (10) The
Baptism of Christ, by the barbers, waxchandlers, surgeons, physicians,
the hardwaremen, the hatters, cappers, skinners, glovers, pinners,
pointmakers, girdlers, pursers, bagmakers, 'sceppers,'[838] the
wiredrawers and cardmakers. (11) The Resurrection, by the butchers,
fishmongers, and watermen. (12) The Holy Ghost, by the worsted weavers.

In some cases the smaller crafts seem to have been absorbed into the
larger, but in the Norwich regulations of 1449,[839] when general
orders were given for the annexation of the smaller crafts to the
larger, the bladesmiths, locksmiths, and lorimers, for instance,
being united to the smiths, it was laid down that such of the annexed
misteries as had seven or more members should elect their own wardens,
and that the mayor should appoint wardens for such as had fewer
than seven members. This, which is interesting as showing how small
some of these misteries were, points to a retention of control, the
amalgamation being mainly concerned, no doubt, with the expenses of
the pageant and the gild feasts. These latter became so elaborate and
costly that many of the unfortunate members chosen as 'feast-makers'
were ruined, and in 1495 orders were given at Norwich that the wardens
alone should be feast-makers, and that they should provide one supper
and one dinner, on the same day, and no more, and that should be at
the common expense of the gild.[840] These orders had to be repeated
in 1531, and it is rather interesting to read that in 1547[841] the
dishes which had to be provided by the cordwainers' feast-makers were
'frumenty, goos, vell, custard, pig, lamb, and tarte. At soper—colde
sute,[842] hot sute, moten, douset,[843] and tarte.'

With the pleasant picture of our craftsman resting from his labours and
regaling himself in true English fashion, we may take leave of him and
his work.


[1] Galloway, _Annals of Coal Mining_, 5.

[2] See Wright's _Uriconium_.

[3] Petrie and Sharp, _Mon. Hist._, i, x.

[4] Printed by the Surtees Society and, more recently, in _V. C. H.

[5] _V. C. H. Durham_, ii. 293.

[6] _Op. cit._ (Rolls Ser.), 160.

[7] Galloway, _op. cit._, 18.

[8] Riley, _Mems. of London_, p. xvi.

[9] Galloway, _op. cit._, 30.

[10] Assize R., 223, m. 4.

[11] Mat. Paris, _Chron._ (Rolls Ser.), vi. 96.

[12] _V. C. H. Glouc._, ii. 218.

[13] Pat., 40 Hen. III., m. 21.

[14] _V. C. H. Shrops._, i. 449.

[15] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 349.

[16] _Ann. Mon._ (Rolls Ser.), iii. 105.

[17] Pat., 35 Edw. I., m. 5d. Complaints had been made and commissions
of inquiry appointed in 1285 (Pat., 13 Edw. I., m. 18d) and 1288 (Pat.,
16 Edw. I., m. 12).

[18] Galloway, _op. cit._, 23.

[19] Colman, _Hist. of Barwick in Elmet_, 205.

[20] Mins. Accts., bdle. 1040, no. 18.

[21] _Journ. Brit. Arch. Ass._, xxix. 174.

[22] _Proc. Soc. of Ant._, xx. 262.

[23] _V. C. H. Lancs_., ii. 359.

[24] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 350.

[25] Add. Ch., 49516.

[26] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 351.

[27] _Ibid._

[28] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 350.

[29] _Ibid._, 351. Cf. a reference to 'le dampe' in 1316: _Hist. MSS.
Com. Rep., Middleton MSS._, 88. This _Report_ contains a great deal of
value for the early history of coal mining.

[30] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 350.

[31] A 'sowe' is mentioned at Cossall in 1316.—_Hist. MSS. Com. Rep.,
Middleton MSS._, 88.

[32] Galloway, _op. cit._, 53.

[33] _Ibid._, 46.

[34] _Finchale Priory_ (Surt. Soc.), p. cccxci.

[35] _V. C. H. Durham_, ii. 322.

[36] _V. C. H. War._, ii. 221.

[37] In 1366 in the manor of Bolsover, £4, 11s. was paid in wages to 'a
man looking after the coals and mine at Shutehoode, and keeping tally
against the colliers and diggers of the same coals and stones.'—Foreign
R., 42 Edw. III., m. 13.

[38] Except that the coalminers in the Forest of Dean, thanks to their
intimate association with the iron-miners there, shared in the latter's

[39] _V. C. H. Durham_, ii. 322.

[40] Exch. Dep. by Com., 29 Eliz., East. 4.

[41] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 352.

[42] 'Fines for digging coals in the lord's waste,' in fifteenth
century.—Galloway, _op. cit._ 76; 'Licences to dig in sixteenth
century,' _ibid._, 113.

[43] Exch. Dep. by Com., 21 Eliz., Hil. 8.

[44] See, _e.g._, _V. C. H. War._, ii. 219; _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 350;
De Banco R., 275, m. 163d.

[45] Star Chamber Proc., Hen. VIII., file 22, no. 94.

[46] Star Chamber Proc., Edw. VI., file 6, no. 99.

[47] _Rot. Parl._, i. 228, 229.

[48] See _V. C. H. War._, ii. 219.

[49] The rent was sometimes paid, partly or wholly, in kind; as at
Shippen in 1262 (Colman, _Hist. of Barwick-in-Elmet_, 205).

[50] _V. C. H. Shrops._, ii. 454.

[51] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 350.

[52] Such partnerships were not uncommon; _e.g._ in 1351 W. de
Allesworth demanded 2s. 10½d. from Geoffrey Hardyng, as the seventh
part of 20s. paid to Geoffrey and his partners for coal got at
Nuneaton.—Add. Ch. 49532.

[53] Galloway, _op. cit._, 70.

[54] Add. Ch. 48948.

[55] Galloway (_op. cit._, 113-14) gives a late sixteenth-century
case in Wakefield, where the 'heads, pillars, and other works ... for
bearing up the ground' being cut away, the ground suddenly fell in.

[56] Galloway, _op. cit._, 45.

[57] _V. C. H. Durham_, ii. 324.

[58] Foreign R., 42 Edw. III., m. E.

[59] Pat., 8 Rich. II.

[60] _Rot. Parl._, iv. 148.

[61] Galloway, _op. cit._, 70, 87.

[62] Customs Accts., 106/1.

[63] _Ibid._, 111/40.

[64] _Ibid._, 171/26.

[65] Kendall, _Iron Ores_, 15; _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 241.

[66] _Journ. of Brit. Arch. Ass._, xxix. 121-9.

[67] _V. C. H. Somers._, i. 275. There was also a 'collegium fabrorum'
at Chichester (Regnum).—_Suss. Arch. Coll._, vii. 61-3.

[68] Kemble, _Cod. Dipl._, no. 30.

[69] _Chron. Evesham_ (Rolls Ser.), 26. The legend was probably
invented as an explanation of the remains of the (Roman) town found
below the ground here, but the tradition of the smiths had no doubt
some foundation.

[70] Dom. Bk., i. 162.

[71] _Ibid._

[72] _V. C. H. Cumberland_, ii. 340.

[73] _Facsimiles of Charters in B. M._, no. 64.

[74] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 356.

[75] Pipe Rolls, quoted in _V. C. H. Gloucs._, ii. 216.

[76] _V. C. H. Gloucs._, ii. 217.

[77] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 241.

[78] See Exch. K. R. Accts., 467, 7.

[79] _Ibid._, 467, 7 (7).

[80] _Ibid._, 467, 7 (7).

[81] _Roy. and Hist. Letters_ (Rolls Ser.), i. 278.

[82] _Furness Coucher_ (Chetham Soc.), pt. iii., Intro.

[83] _Ibid._

[84] Holinshed, _Chron._, sub anno.

[85] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 357.

[86] Peat was mixed with the charcoal in Lancashire, and doubtless
elsewhere, when available.—_V. C. H. Lancs._, ii. 361.

[87] This process was used by the Romans at Beaufort, near Battle, in
Sussex, amongst other places.—_Suss. Arch. Coll._, xxix. 173

[88] _Journ. of Brit. Arch. Ass._, xxix. 124.

[89] Even after the introduction of the footblast the 'cinders' or
slag, contained about half the original iron, according to Dud Dudley
(_Metallum Martis_), and were worth resmelting in the improved furnaces
of later times.

[90] _Engl. Hist. Rev._, xiv. 513.

[91] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 358.

[92] _Furness Coucher_ (Chetham Soc.), pt. iii., Intro., and pp. 261-6.

[93] See above, p. 7.

[94] The same term is used in connection with burning tiles, and is no
doubt derived from the same root as anneal.

[95] This account of the process of manufacture is compiled from
several sources, the chief being: (1) the accounts of Tudeley Forge,
Tunbridge, for the reign of Edw. III., in the P. R. O.; (2) the
accounts of Bedbourne Forge, Durham, in 1408, _Engl. Hist. Rev._, xiv.
509-29; (3) several Sussex accounts summarised by the present writer in
_V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 244-5.

[96] Nicholls, _Iron Making in the Forest of Dean_, 20.

[97] _Cal. Chart. R._, iii. 95-6.

[98] _V. C. H. Glouc._, ii. 219, n. 5. Cf. the twelfth century grant
to the monks of Louth Park of 'duas fabricas, id est duos focos ...
scilicet unam fabricam blomeriam ... unam operariam.'—_V. C. H. Derby_,
ii. 356.

[99] The date of the introduction of hammers driven by water power
is problematic: a 'great waterhamor' was working in Ashdown Forest,
Sussex, in 1496.—Misc. Bks. Exch. T. R., 8, f. 49.

[100] The unworked bloom was called a 'loop,' which appears to be
derived from the French _loup_, a wolf, the German equivalent, _Stück_,
being applied to such a mass of iron.—Swank, _Iron in All Ages_, 80.

[101] A furnace once lit might be kept in blast sometimes for as long
as forty weeks, in the seventeenth century, but the periods usual in
earlier times were no doubt much shorter.

[102] _Engl. Hist. Rev._, xiv. 529.

[103] _Furness Coucher_, pt. iii., Intro. The word used is 'band,' but
it is apparently equivalent to 'bloom.'

[104] Exch. K. R. Accts., 485, no. 11.

[105] _Ibid._, 466, no. 20.

[106] _Suss. Arch. Coll._, ii. 202.

[107] Exch. K. R. Accts., 546, no. 16.

[108] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 246.

[109] Exch. K. R. Accts., 483, no. 19.

[110] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 245.

[111] _Engl. Hist. Rev._, xiv. 509-29.

[112] Exch. K. R. Accts., 485, no. 11.

[113] Mins. Accts., 890, no. 25.

[114] Latinised in one place as '_anteriores flatores_.'

[115] _Suss. Arch. Coll._, xiii. 128.

[116] At some iron mills near Teddesley in Staffordshire in 1583 the
filler and fyner were identical, and there was a hammerman and a
founder.—Exch. K. R. Accts., 546, no. 16.

[117] Nicholls, _Ironmaking in the Forest of Dean_; _V. C. H. Gloucs._,
ii. 219-23.

[118] This was farmed in 1280 for £23, so that the amount exported
annually must have been well over 10,000 loads.

[119] The surface material which has to be removed before the ore is

[120] _Arch. Cambr_. (S. 3), iii. 418.

[121] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 247

[122] Exch. Dep. by Com., 22 Eliz., Trin. 4.

[123] _Journ. Brit. Arch. Ass._, xxxi. 129-42. For a list of Roman pigs
found in England, see _ibid._, liv. 272.

[124] _Ibid._

[125] Birch, _Cart. Sax._, i. 579.

[126] _V. C. H. Glouc._, ii. 237.

[127] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 323.

[128] Pipe Rolls of Hen. II.

[129] _V. C. H. Durham_, ii. 348.

[130] _V. C. H. Somers._, ii. 363.

[131] Pat., 20 Hen. III., m. 13.

[132] _V. C. H. Cumberland_, ii. 339.

[133] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 326.

[134] _V. C. H. Somers._, ii. 367-9.

[135] _V. C. H. Cumb._, ii. 340.

[136] Pat., 15 Edw. IV., pt. i., m. 22.

[137] Assize R., 143, m. 1. The Scottish king's dominial rights over
Alston, apart from the mines, seem to have been well established.
William the Lion granted land at Alston as 'in Tyndale,' to William
de Vipont, and later to his son Ivo de Vipont, the latter grant being
confirmed by King John in 1210. Finally, after the whole matter had
been carefully examined, Edward I. gave the manor of Alston in 1282 to
Nicholas de Vipont to hold of the King of Scotland, reserving, however,
the liberty of the mines.—Assize Rolls, 143, m. 1; 132, m. 34; Chanc.
Misc. 53, file 1, nos. 20, 22.

[138] _V. C. H. Cumb._, ii. 340.

[139] Assize R., 143, m. 1.

[140] Assize R., 132, m. 34; 143, m. 1.

[141] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 339.

[142] Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 19.

[143] _e.g._ at Eyam and Litton.—_V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 338.

[144] Until the nineteenth century the would-be miner had to set up a
model stow, fastened with wooden pins and not with nails.

[145] _i.e._ forwards and backwards along the line of the vein.

[146] It is not quite clear whether he threw from the old pit, in which
case he would naturally throw a very short distance, or from his own
pit, in which case he might so throw as to cover much of the vein which
would have belonged to the elder pitchers.

[147] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 328.

[148] The Derbyshire standard dish made in 1512 and still preserved at
Wirksworth contains about sixty lbs. of ore.

[149] Assize R., 132, m. 34.

[150] _Ibid._

[151] Memo. R., K. R., Mich., 2 Edw. II., no. 55.

[152] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 332.

[153] Memo. R., L. T. R., 25-26 Edw. I., m. 51.

[154] The load, or lade (_lada_), contained nine dishes (_disci_,

[155] Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 19.

[156] _Ibid._, 261, no. 25.

[157] Memo. R., L. T. R., 25-26 Edw. I., m. 51.

[158] In 1302 there were four mines: the South Mine, the Middle Mine,
the Mine of Fershull, and the Old Mine.—Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 22.

[159] The smiths were paid 12d.-18d. a week.—_Ibid._

[160] Exch. K. R. Accts., 261, no. 25.

[161] Anct. Corresp., xlviii. 81.

[162] Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 16.

[163] Anct. Corresp., xlviii, 81.

[164] Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 22.

[165] Pipe R., 28 Edw. I.

[166] _V. C. H. Durham_, ii. 349.

[167] Pipe R., 28 Edw. I.

[168] Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 6.

[169] Pipe R., 28 Edw. I.

[170] _V. C. H. Somers._, ii. 373.

[171] Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 22.

[172] _Archæologia_, lvij, 113-124.

[173] _e.g._ 'In 6510 turbis tannitis emptis ad inde faciendos cineres
pro plumbo affinando.'—Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 4.

[174] Memo., L. T. R., 25-26 Edw. I., m. 51.

[175] Exch. K. R. Accts., 260, no. 7.

[176] _Ibid._, no. 19.

[177] Pipe R., 28 Edw. I.

[178] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 324.

[179] It is possible that 'cut' is the Celtic word '_cwt_', meaning a
piece, and dates back to British times.—_Ibid._

[180] _Ibid._

[181] Pipe R., 28 Edw. I.

[182] Pat., 27 Edw. I., m. 28.

[183] Exch. K. R. Accts., 126, no. 9.

[184] Pat., 35 Edw. I., m. 19.

[185] Mins. Accts., 826, no. 12.

[186] _Ibid._, no. 11.

[187] Exch. K. R. Accts., 265, no. 9.

[188] _Ibid._, no. 10.

[189] Close 24 Edw. I., m. 11d.

[190] Pipe R., 28 Edw. I.

[191] _Ibid._

[192] Anct. Corresp., xlviii. 177.

[193] 'Minera' may also bear the sense of 'ore.'

[194] Close 7 Edw. II., m. 6.

[195] Anct. Pet., 13552.

[196] Pat., 17 Edw. II., p. 2, m. 15.

[197] Assize R., 135, m. 26d.

[198] Pat., 14 Edw. IV., p. 1, m. 7d.

[199] Pat., 15 Edw. IV., p. 1, m. 22.

[200] Pat., 18 Edw. IV., p. 2, m. 30.

[201] Pat., 2 Edw. IV., p. 1, m. 7.

[202] Exch. K. R. Accts., 262, no. 2.

[203] _Acts of Privy Council_, 1542-7, p. 367.

[204] _Jour. of Brit. Arch. Ass._, lxii. 145-60.

[205] _Archæologia_, lix. 281-8.

[206] _V. C. H. Cornw._, i. 523.

[207] _Ibid._

[208] Vol. iii. of _Harvard Economic Studies_. The same writer has
contributed a valuable article on tin-mining to _V. C. H. Cornwall_.

[209] Lewis, _op. cit._, 5.

[210] Lewis, _op. cit._, 11.

[211] A case of a London goldsmith making engines and instruments
to drain a deep tin mine near Truro occurs in first quarter of the
sixteenth century—Early Chanc. Proc., 481, no. 46.

[212] Memo. R., L. T. R., 9 Eliz., Mich., 3.

[213] Either the channel by which the blast was admitted, or else the
channel conveying water to the wheel.

[214] The ore was sometimes roasted before smelting.

[215] _V. C. H. Cornw._, i. 539.

[216] Lewis, _op. cit._, 133-4.

[217] W. de Wrotham, when appointed warden of the stannaries in 1198,
ordered all masters of ships in Cornwall and Devon to swear not to take
unstamped tin out of the country.—Lewis, _op. cit._, 337.

[218] Lewis, _op. cit._, 190.

[219] _Op. cit._, 187.

[220] _V. C. H. Cornw._, i. 523.

[221] Lewis, _op. cit._, 34.

[222] For output, see Lewis, _op. cit._, App. J.

[223] Lewis, _op. cit._, App. K.

[224] _Ibid._, Apps. L-T.

[225] _Chron. of Battle Abbey_, 11.

[226] _V. C. H. Northants._, ii. 293-5.

[227] _Ibid._, 295.

[228] _Fabric R. of York_ (Surtees Soc.), _passim_.

[229] _e.g._ at the Tower in 1324 'one boatload of Aylesford stone
called rag, 6s.'—Exch. K. R. Accts., 469, no. 7. And in 1362 '8
boatloads of stone called ragg, with carriage from Maidstone, £10, 13s.
4d.'—_Ibid._, 472, no. 9.

[230] _Ibid._, 502, no. 10.

[231] See the Westminster building accounts, _passim_.

[232] _Arch. Cant._, ii. 112.

[233] '20 tontightes de peers de Beer.'—Exch. K. R. Accts., 472, no. 8.

[234] Exch. K. R. Accts., 491, no. 13.

[235] For some fourteenth and fifteenth century references to the
Haslebury quarries, see _The Tropenell Cartulary_ (Wilts. Arch. Soc.),
ii. 148-50.

[236] _V. C. H. Dorset_, ii. 333.

[237] _Ibid._, 339.

[238] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 230.

[239] Exch. K. R. Accts., 305, no. 12.

[240] _Ibid._, 502, no. 3.

[241] _Arch. Cant._, ii. 112.

[242] The 'pondus dolii,' anglicised in other entries as 'tuntight,'
seems to have been about 40 cubic feet.

[243] Presumably from the Yorkshire quarry referred to above; it came
_via_ London.—_Ibid._, 121.

[244] Apparently about 440 tons.—_Ibid._

[245] Pipe R., 16 Edw. III.

[246] The term 'damlade,' of uncertain meaning, seems to be peculiar to
Yorkshire. See _Fabric R. of York_.

[247] Pipe R., 7 Edw. III.

[248] Misc. Bks., Tr. of R., 4, f. 142.

[249] Exch. K. R. Accts., 476, no. 5.

[250] _Ibid._, 461, no. 11.

[251] Exch. K. R. Accts., no. 12.

[252] _V. C. H. Northants._, ii. 296-7.

[253] A similar method of splitting was employed in the case of the
slates of Stonesfield, in Oxfordshire.—_V. C. H. Oxon._, ii. 267.

[254] _Ibid._; _V. C. H. Northants._, ii. 296.

[255] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 230.

[256] Exch. K. R. Accts., 476, no. 5.

[257] _Ibid._, 494, no. 4.

[258] Pipe R., 7 Edw. III.

[259] Exch. K. R. Accts., 502, no. 3.

[260] _Fabric R. of York_, 19.

[261] A fifteenth-century account for Launceston mentions the purchase
of 'An iron tool for breaking stones in the quarry, called a polax,
weighing 16½ lbs., and two new wedges weighing 10 lbs.'—Exch. K. R.
Accts., 461, no. 13.

[262] For a fuller history of the Purbeck marble quarries, see _V. C.
H. Dorset_, ii. 331-8, from which the details given below are taken
when other references are not given.

[263] See articles on 'Medieval Figure Sculpture in England,'
_Architectural Review_, 1903.

[264] Liberate R., K. R., 37 Hen. III., m. 13.

[265] Exch. K. R. Accts., 467, no. 6 (2).

[266] _Ibid._, 469, no. 8.

[267] _Ibid._, no. 12.

[268] _Arch. Journ._, x. 116.

[269] _Arch. Journ._, lxi. 221-40.

[270] See _e.g._ the Flawford and Breadsall figures, _ibid._; and the
catalogue of Alabaster carvings exhibited at the Society of Antiquaries
in 1910.

[271] Pipe R., 41 Edw. III.

[272] _Arch. Journ._, lxiv. 32.

[273] _Ibid._, lxi. 229.

[274] The numerous cases of the export of alabaster carvings from Poole
make it probable that the Purbeck carvers, when the demand for their
marble fell off, worked the alabaster which exists in the district.—_V.
C. H. Dorset_, ii.

[275] Some of these no doubt were sold at the time of the
Reformation.—_Arch. Journ._, lxi. 239.

[276] _Ibid._, 237-8.

[277] _Ibid._, 230.

[278] _Arch. Journ._, lxi. 234-5.

[279] For an account of these, see Mr. Hope's article in _Archæologia_,

[280] _Arch. Journ._, lxiv. 239.

[281] _Ibid._, x. 120.

[282] _Fabric R. of York_, 74, 78, 84, 90, 106.

[283] _Fabric R. of York_, 15.

[284] Exch. K. R. Accts., 504, no. 4.

[285] _Hundred R._, ii. 56.

[286] Exch. K. R. Accts., 467, no. 4.

[287] Customs Accts., 124/30.

[288] Probably chalk may be taken at about 4d. the quarter.

[289] _Brit. Arch. Ass. Journal_, lx.

[290] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 231.

[291] Chaffers, _Gilda Aurifabrorum_, 19.

[292] _Ibid._, 23-5.

[293] A long chronological list of English goldsmiths is given by
Chaffers, _op. cit._

[294] _Beverley Chapter Act Book_ (Surtees Soc.), ii., p. lxv.

[295] _Cal. of City of London Letter Books_, A., p. 180.

[296] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 350.

[297] Foreign R., 4 Hen. V., m. A.

[298] _Camden Soc._, xxxvii. 42.

[299] Chaffers, _Gilda Aurifabrorum_, 38.

[300] _Ibid._, 8, 9.

[301] Foreign R., 3 Hen. IV., m. E.

[302] _Church Bells of England_, by H. B. Walters, published since this
was in print, contains much valuable matter.

[303] _Chron. Battle Abbey_ (ed. Lower), 17.

[304] Cott. MS. Vesp. A., 22, f. 88.

[305] Stahlschmidt, _London Bell-founders_, 72.

[306] _Ibid._, p. 3.

[307] On the other hand, Fagniez (_Docts. relatifs à l'histoire de
l'Industrie_, ii. 67) says that 'sainterius,' the title applied to
Thomas de Claville who recast a bell for Notre Dame in 1397, is 'fait
sur le vieux nom français des cloches _saints_ ... qui se rattache à

[308] Ex. inf. Mr. C. H. Vellacott, from Assize Roll.

[309] Most of the London founders recorded by Mr. Stahlschmidt as known
or possible bell-founders used the title 'potter.'—_Loc. cit._, 72-74.

[310] Early Chanc. Proc., 24, no. 138.

[311] Particulars are given in Raven, _Bells of England_, on which this
account is based.

[312] To prevent the core, thickness, and cope sticking together, it
seems to have been usual to dust them over with tan.

[313] Raven, _op. cit._, 74.

[314] _V. C. H. Berks._, ii. 418.

[315] Raven, _op. cit._, 57.

[316] Early Chanc. Proc., 68, no. 144.

[317] _Ch. Ward. Accts. St. Mary-at-Hill_ (E. E. T. S.).

[318] Raven, _op. cit._, 47.

[319] _Ibid._, 319.

[320] _Recs. of St. Michael's._ See also _Ch. Wardens Accts._ (Somerset
Rec. Soc.).

[321] _V. C. H. Berks._, ii. 416. Cf. H. B. Walters, _Church Bells of
England_, ch. xii.

[322] Toulmin Smith, _English Gilds_, 295.

[323] Raven, _op. cit._, 69.

[324] _London Bell-founders_, 3.

[325] _Ibid._, 45.

[326] _Issue R. of Exch._, 239.

[327] _Ibid._, 346.

[328] _Glouc. Corporation Recs._

[329] _Sacrist Rolls of Ely_, ii. 114, 138, where details of the outlay
in the purchase of tin and copper, and of clay for the moulds and other
necessaries are given.

[330] Raven, _op. cit._, 149.

[331] _Ibid._, 90.

[332] _Fabric R. of York_ (Surtees Soc.), 9. Details are given.

[333] Raven, _op. cit._, where illustrations of the three panels are

[334] If the bell-shaped object is really the core, the ornamentation
upon it must be ascribed to 'artist's licence,' as the surface of the
core would in reality be quite plain.

[335] Inq. ad qd. damnum, File 108, no. 15.

[336] Exch. K. R. Accts., 462, no. 16. Amongst the items of expenditure
are 'For eggs and ale bought for making the inscription round the bell
3d. For wax and cobbler's wax (_code_) for the same 5½d.' Possibly a
mixture of eggs and ale was used to anoint the metal letter stamps and
prevent their sticking to the clay of the cope.

[337] Early Chanc. Proc., 24, no. 138.

[338] De Banco, 831, m. 414; and Raven, _op. cit._, 164-6, quoting Year
Book 9 Edw. IV., Easter Term, case 13.

[339] _V. C. H. Shrops._, i. 47.

[340] Ryley, _Mem. of London_, 205.

[341] Enrolled Wardrobe Accts., no. 4.

[342] Enrolled Wardrobe Accts., no. 4.

[343] Foreign R., 9 Ric. II., m. A.

[344] Foreign R., 11 Ric. II., m. H.

[345] _Issue R. of Exch._, 346.

[346] Foreign R., 3 Hen. V., m. C.

[347] Foreign R., 3 Hen. IV., m. G.

[348] _Ibid._, m. I.

[349] _Issue R. of Exch._, 277.

[350] An illustration of a gun firing an arrow, drawn apparently in
1326, is mentioned in _Proc. Soc. Ant._ (xvi., 225), and at the battle
of St. Albans in 1461 guns were used shooting 'arowes of an elle of
length.'—_Gregory's Chron._ (Camd. Soc.), 213.

[351] Foreign R., 11 Ric. II., m. G.

[352] Foreign R., 3 Hen. V., m. C.

[353] _Issue R. of Exch._, 332.

[354] _Ibid._, 307-8.

[355] Foreign R., 3 Hen. V., m. C.

[356] In the Scottish expedition of 1496, five out of thirty-two
'faucons of brasse,' and twelve out of one hundred and eighty
'hakbusses of iren' were broken in action.—Exch. Tr. of R., Misc. Bks.,
7, f. 140.

[357] Exch. Tr. of R., Misc. Bks., 8, f. 134.

[358] Early Chanc. Proc., 78, no. 81.

[359] _Issue R. of Exch._, 382.

[360] Foreign R., 12 Hen. VI., m. D.

[361] Figured in _Suss. Arch. Coll._, xlvi.

[362] He was paid at the rate of 16d. the hundredweight.—Exch. Tr. of
R., Misc. Bks., 8, f. 139.

[363] _Ibid._, f. 34.

[364] Exch. Tr. of R., Misc. Bks., 8, f. 158.

[365] Early Chanc. Proc., 222, no. 112.

[366] Exch. Tr. of R., Misc. Bks., 8, f. 132.

[367] _Ibid._, f. 81.

[368] _Ibid._, f. 96.

[369] Early Chanc. Proc., 376, no. 32.

[370] Exch. Tr. of R., Misc. Bks., 8, f. 136.

[371] _Ibid._, f. 149.

[372] Exch. Tr. of R., Misc. Bks., vol. vii., _passim_, and _L. and P.
Hen. VIII._, vol. i.

[373] Misc. Bks., vol. i., ff. 32, 78.

[374] _Ibid._, ff. 57, 61.

[375] _Ibid._, vol. iv., ff. 166, 181.

[376] See _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 246-9.

[377] _Arch. Journ._, xxx. 319-24.

[378] See _V. C. H. Northants._, i. 206-12.

[379] _Ibid._

[380] _Proc. Soc. Ant._, xvi. 42.

[381] _Brit. Arch. Ass. Journ._, xxxiii.

[382] _Proc. Soc. Ant._, xvii. 261-70.

[383] _Somers. Arch. Soc._, xiii. (2) 1.

[384] The dark colour of the Castor ware seems to have been caused
by 'smothering' the kiln, by closing the vent, before the baking was

[385] Misc. Accts. 1147, no. 23.

[386] _Suss. Arch. Coll._, xlv. 128-38.

[387] A Roman glazing kiln was found at Castor.—_V. C. H. Northants._,
i. 210.

[388] Fagniez, _Docs. relatifs à l'histoire de l'industrie_, no. 133.

[389] Dom. Bk., 65, 156, 168^{_b._}

[390] _e.g._ 'Pottersfield' at Horsham, in which parish several finds
of green glazed thirteenth-century vessels have been made.—_V. C. H.
Sussex_, ii. 251.

[391] _e.g._ 'Geoffrey the potter,' who occurs in 1314 at Limpsfield,
where remains of kilns have been found.—_Proc. Soc. Ant._, iii.

[392] Lib. R., 51 Hen. III., m. 10. Simon 'le Pichermakere' of Cornwall
is found in the fourteenth century sending his wares (presumably
pitchers) to Sussex.—Anct. Pet., 10357-8.

[393] _Inq. Nonarum_, 361. Cf. the Hundred Rolls for Bucks.

[394] Mins. Accts., 507, no. 8227.

[395] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 251.

[396] _Ibid._

[397] _Arch. Journ._, lix. 1-16.

[398] _Proc. Soc. Ant._, xv. 5-11.

[399] _Rec. of Norwich_, ii., no. 193.

[400] Riley, _Mem. of London_, 254.

[401] _Ibid._, 309. The monks of Boxley got as much as 10s. the
thousand for some of the tiles from their tilery this year.—Mins.
Accts., 1253, no. 13.

[402] Toulmin Smith, _English Guilds_, 399. At Lincoln, on the other
hand, the tilers had formed a gild in 1346, and no tiler not belonging
to the gild might stay in the town.—_Ibid._, 184.

[403] _V. C. H. Essex_, ii. 456.

[404] _Statutes_, 17 Edw. IV.

[405] Thorold Rogers, _Hist. of Agriculture and Prices_, i. 490.

[406] Mins. Accts., 899, 900.

[407] Possibly from the French, _fétu_ = a straw, from their being
moulded as hollow cylinders.

[408] Turf was evidently used by the Cambridgeshire tilers for
fuel.—_Sacrist Rolls of Ely_, ii. 67, 93, 137.

[409] 'Pro luto tredando ad dictos vj furnos pro tegulis inde
faciendis.' The meaning of _tredando_ is uncertain, but as the process
is always mentioned after the clay had been carried to the kilns,
it may have been the rolling of the clay to the right thickness for
cutting tiles from.

[410] The words used for burning, or baking, the tiles are _eleare_ and
_aneleare_, both connected with our word 'anneal.'

[411] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 251.

[412] In 1373 Peter at Gate leased the pasturage of Nackholt, where the
tileries lay, at the low rent of 15s. on condition that he should serve
as 'the lord's workman for making tiles.'

[413] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 252.

[414] De Banco, 407, m. 12.

[415] Harl. Ch., 76 D., 32.

[416] _Ibid._, B. 50.

[417] Kelle = kiln: cf. Anct. D., A 4904, for a 'tylekelle' at Woolwich
in 1450.

[418] _Chron. de Melsa_ (Rolls Ser.), iii. 179-80.

[419] _Hist. MSS. Com., Beverley MSS._, 15.

[420] _Ibid._, 62.

[421] _Sacrist R. of Ely_, ii. 67.

[422] 'Flaunderistyle vocata Breke.'—Exch. K. R. Accts., 503, no. 12.

[423] _Ibid._, 472, no. 4.

[424] _Hist. MSS. Com., Beverley MSS._, 62.

[425] _Hist. MSS. Com., Beverley MSS._, 128.

[426] _Ibid._, 47. These by-laws distinguish in one place between
'tilethakkers' and 'tile wallers,' the latter being what we should call

[427] Exch. K. R. Accts., 494, no. 4.

[428] _Ibid._, 467, no. 6 (6).

[429] Such were, no doubt, the paving tiles, of which 185,000 were
bought from Richard Gregory, in 1357, for Westminster Chapel at 6s. 8d.
the hundred.—_Ibid._, 472, no. 4.

[430] Lethaby, _Westminster Abbey_, 48; _Arch. Journal_, lxix. 36-73.

[431] _V. C. H. Derby_, ii. 375. _Ibid._

[432] _V. C. H. Worces._, ii. 275.

[433] _Suss. Arch. Coll._, xi. 230.

[434] _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 295.

[435] John of London, 'glasyere,' and John, son of John Alemayn of
Chiddingfold, were acquitted on a charge of burglary at Turwick in
1342.—Gaol Delivery R., 129, m. 12.

[436] Exch. K. R. Accts., 471, no. 6.

[437] _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 296.

[438] _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 296.

[439] In 1404 the Sacrist of Durham had in store 'of new coloured glass
2 _scheff_, of white glass and new 76 _scheffe_.'—_Durham Acct. R._
(Surtees Soc.), ii. 397.

[440] _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 297; _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 254.

[441] Exch. K. R. Accts., 471, no. 6.

[442] _Durham Acct. R._, ii. 393.

[443] _Fabric R. of York_, 76.

[444] _Ibid._, 83.

[445] _Ibid._, 37.

[446] _Cat. of Pat._, 1446-52, p. 255. The glorious windows now in
King's College Chapel were made between 1515 and 1530 by four English
and two Flemish glaziers, all of whom were resident in London.—Atkinson
and Clark, _Cambridge_, 361.

[447] _Fabric R. of York_, 69.

[448] _Ibid._, 104, 108, 109.

[449] Hartshorne, _Old Engl. Glass_, 129.

[450] Ale is also said in one place to have been used 'pro congelacione

[451] 'Frangentes et conjungentes vitrum super tabulas depictas.'

[452] The colours in some cases were fixed by heating, and it
is presumably to this that an entry in an account of work at
Guildford Castle in 1292 refers: 'In uno furno faciendo pro vytro
comburendo—viijd.'—Exch. K. R. Accts., 492, no. 10.

[453] Pipe R., 2 Hen. II.

[454] _V. C. H. Lincs._, ii. 302.

[455] See charter of Stephen, _Cal. Chart. R._, iii. 378.

[456] Pipe R., 19 Hen. II.

[457] Boldon Book.—_V. C. H. Durham_, i. 338.

[458] Printed by Riley, _Liber Custumarum_ (i. 130-1), and, from an
earlier copy, by Leach, _Beverley Town Documents_ (Selden Soc.).

[459] The weavers were not villeins; had they been so, the leave of
their lords would have been necessary before they could obtain the
freedom of their town.

[460] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 33.

[461] _Ibid._, lxiii.

[462] _e.g._ Ashley, _Economic History_, i. 193: 'No cloth was
manufactured for export; and a great part of the English demand for
cloth'—indeed the whole of the demand for the finer qualities—'was met
by importation.'

[463] Pipe R., 18 Hen. II.

[464] Pipe R., 27 Hen. II., and other years.

[465] Pipe R., 28 Hen. II.

[466] The 'list' is the strip of selvage at the edge of the cloth.

[467] Assize R., 358.

[468] Pat., 2 Hen. III., m. 4, 2.

[469] Pat., 9 Hen. III., m. 5.

[470] Lib. R., 30 Hen. III.: some years earlier cloth to be distributed
at Worcester had been bought at Oxford.—Lib. R., 17 Hen. III.

[471] Lib. R., 35 Hen. III., m. 17.

[472] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 124.

[473] _Cal. of S. P. Venice_, i. 3.

[474] Lib. R., 36 Hen. III., m. 19.

[475] _Arch. Journ._, ix. 70-1.

[476] The manufacture of this cloth must have originated in the village
of Worsted, possibly with some settlement of Flemish weavers, but soon
spread throughout the county.

[477] _Rec. of Norwich_, ii. 406.

[478] _Statutes_, 20 Hen. VI.

[479] _Rot. Parl._ iv. 230, 236.

[480] Customs Accts., 5, no. 7.

[481] _Black Book of Admiralty_ (Rolls Ser.), ii. 197. Blues of
Beverley, scarlets and greens of Lincoln, scarlets and blues of
Stamford, coverlets of Winchester and cloth of Totness occur in
wardrobe accounts of 1236. Pipe R., 19, 20 Henry III.

[482] _Black Book of Admiralty_ (Rolls Ser.), ii. 187, 197.

[483] There was an 'omanseterowe' in the Drapery at Norwich as early as
1288.—_Rec. of Norwich_, ii. 8.

[484] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 4, 40. Narrow 'Osetes' were
also made at Salisbury.—Exch. K. R. Accts., 344, no. 34.

[485] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 125; ii. 549.

[486] At Northampton the cloth trade, which in the time of Henry III.
employed 300 men, had almost died out in 1334.—_Rot. Parl._, ii. 85.

[487] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 424.

[488] As early as 1331 special protection was granted to John Kempe
of Flanders and any other clothworkers who wished to settle in
England.—Pat., 5 Edw. III., p. 2, m. 25.

[489] _Statutes_, 11 Edw. III.

[490] _Rot. Parl._, ii. 449, Close 13 Edw. III., p. 3, m. 11.

[491] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 3.

[492] Langland, _Piers Plowman_.

[493] 'A Concise Poem on ... Shepton Mallet,' by Richd. Watts; printed
in _The Young Man's Looking Glass_, 1641. With this may be compared
Deloney's 'Pleasant History of John Winchcombe (Jack of Newbury),'
written some fifty years earlier.—_V. C. H. Berks._, i. 388-9.


    'Then to another room came they
    Where children were, in poor array,
    And every one sat picking wool,
    The finest from the coarse to pull.'


    'Two hundred men, the truth is so,
    Wrought in their looms, all in a row;
    By every one a pretty boy
    Sat making quills with mickle joy.'

[496] The burler's business was to remove knots, loose ends and other

[497] The manufacture of these cloths was licensed in 1390, provided
the quality was not improved.—_Statutes_, 13 Ric. II.

[498] Assize R.

[499] _Liber Custumarum_, ii. 549. Spanish wool is prominent amongst
the imports at Southampton in 1310.—Customs Accts., 136, no. 8, n.

[500] _Statutes_, 4 Edw. IV.

[501] _Statutes_, 7 Edw. IV.

[502] An alkali, known as '_cineres_,' possibly a kind of _barilla_ or
carbonate of soda (_Rec. of City of Norwich_, ii. 209) occurs fairly
often: _e.g._ taxation of Colchester, _Rot. Parl._, i. 244.

[503] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 6.

[504] _e.g._ Customs Accts., 136/4, 136/12.

[505] _Recs. of City of Norwich_, ii. 209.

[506] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 16-22.

[507] Lands. MS., 121, no. 21.

[508] Cf. _Rec. Borough of Northampton_, i. 121: the compiler has
mistaken 'wode' for wood.

[509] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 39.

[510] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 81-90.

[511] _Rot. Parl._, iv. 75.

[512] _Early Chanc. Proc._, 7, no. 23.

[513] Exch. K. R. Accts., 345, no. 16.

[514] Plunket appears to have been a pale blue, half the quantity of
woad sufficing for plunkets that was used for azures, which in turn
took half the amount required for blues.—_V. C. H. Suffolk_, ii. 258.

[515] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 129.

[516] There were no doubt the 'browne blewes' of later records: _e.g._
a Benenden clothier was fined in 1563 for 'a browne blewe, being a
deceiptfull color.'—Memo. K. R., 7 Eliz., Hil., m. 330.

[517] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 125.

[518] Alkermes, an insect resembling cochineal.

[519] _Statutes_, 24 Hen. VIII.; cf. 4 Edw. IV.

[520] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 8, 9.

[521] _Rec. of City of Norwich_, ii. 119.

[522] _Statutes_, 4 Edw. IV.; 3 Hen. VIII.

[523] _V. C. H. Essex_, ii. 255.

[524] _V. C. H. Worcs._, ii. 286.

[525] _V. C. H. Essex_, ii. 383-4.

[526] The use of woof in place of warp was strictly forbidden.—_Liber
Custumarum_, i. 125; _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 2. At Worcester
in 1497 any one bringing yarn to be spun into cloth was to bring the
warp and the woof separate.—_V. C. H. Worcs._, ii. 285.

[527] _Rec. of City of Norwich_, ii. 378.

[528] _Rot. Parl._, iii. 618.

[529] _Arch. Journal_, ix. 70: cf. Assize R., 787, m. 86.

[530] _V. C. H. Notts._, ii. 345.

[531] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 4.

[532] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 134.

[533] _Arch. Journ._, ix. 71.

[534] The suspension of worsted weaving for a month from 15 August was
enforced in 1511 to avoid a shortage of agricultural labour during
harvest.—_Rec. of City of Norwich_, ii. 376.

[535] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 423.

[536] _Ibid._ Candlewick Street (now Cannon Street) was the centre
of manufacture of a coarse cheap cloth used for horse trappings, and
also bought in large quantities for the King's almoner from 1330 to
1380.—Enrolled Wardrobe Accts., L. T. R., 2-4.

[537] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 40, 123.

[538] _Statutes_, 8 Hen. VI.

[539] _V. C. H. Shrops._, i. 428.

[540] _Statutes_, 3 and 5 Henry VIII.

[541] Toulmin Smith, _Engl. Gilds_, 179. The gild was founded in 1297,
but this regulation was probably of later date.

[542] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 127.

[543] _Liber Custumarum_, i. 128-9.

[544] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 13.

[545] _Ibid._, 79.

[546] _V. C. H. Notts_., ii. 346.

[547] _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 279.

[548] _e.g._ at Nottingham; _V. C. H. Notts._, ii. 346.

[549] _V. C. H. Warw._, ii. 252.

[550] _Ibid._

[551] _Statutes_, 15 Ric. II.

[552] _e.g._ _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 344; _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 257.

[553] Exch. Dep. by Com., 41 Eliz., East. 1.

[554] _Rot. Parl._, i. 243.

[555] _Statutes_, 4 Edw. IV.

[556] _V. C. H. Suffolk_, ii. 262.

[557] Exch. K. R. Accts., bdles. 339-345.

[558] Marcus le Fair of Winchester was the only clothier not a Londoner
from whom cloth was bought for the royal household in 1408.—Exch. K. R.
Accts., 405, no. 22.

[559] _V. C. H. Berks._, i. 388.

[560] _V. C. H. Suffolk_, ii. 256.

[561] _Hist. MSS. Com._, Rep. viii. 93.

[562] Vlnage, or aulnage, from aulne = an ell.

[563] _Statutes_, 2 Edw. III.

[564] The penalty of forfeiture was withdrawn in 1354 as injurious to
trade, deficient cloths being marked with their actual size.—_Ibid._,
27 Edw. III.

[565] _Statutes_, 7, 8, 10 Hen. IV.

[566] _Statutes_, 11 Hen. VI.

[567] _Rec. of City of Norwich_, ii. 407.

[568] _Rot. Parl._, i. 292.

[569] _Statutes_, 13 Ric. II.; 11 Hen. IV.

[570] _Rot. Parl._, iii. 637.

[571] _Statutes_, 20 Hen. VI.

[572] _Statutes_, 4 Edw. IV.

[573] _Statutes_, 18 Hen. VI.

[574] Exch. Dep. by Com., 41 Eliz.

[575] _Statutes_, 5 Edw. VI., 1 Mary, etc.

[576] See Memoranda Rolls, K. R., _passim_.

[577] Memo. R., K. R., Hil. 7 Eliz., m. 329. As an earlier instance,
sixteen drapers in Coventry, thirteen in York, and seven in Lincoln,
besides others elsewhere, were fined in the first quarter of 1390 for
cloths of ray, not of assize.—_Ibid._, Hil. 13 Ric. II.

[578] Exch. Dep. by Com., 30 Eliz., Hil., 8.

[579] _Statutes_, 14-15 Hen. VIII.

[580] Early Chanc. Proc., 141, no. 4.

[581] _Statutes_, 5 Hen. VIII.

[582] _Rot. Parl._, i. 292.

[583] The same material was used in 1323 for the pillows of the king's
new beds.—Enr. Ward. Accts., 3, m. 2.

[584] _Ibid._, m. 10.

[585] _Ibid._, 2, m. 11.

[586] _Engl. Hist. Rev._, xvi. 289.

[587] _Rot. Parl._, ii. 347.

[588] _Statutes_, 4 Edw. IV.

[589] _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 343.

[590] _Ibid._, 343.

[591] Exch. K. R. Accts., 344, no. 10. The output from Berks. for the
same period was 1747 kerseys, of which Steventon accounted for 574 and
East and West Hendred for 520.—_Ibid._, 343, no. 24.

[592] Early Chanc. Proc., 140, no. 54.

[593] _Statutes_, 14-15 Hen. VIII.

[594] _Rot. Parl._, iv. 361.

[595] Enr. Ward. Accts., 4, m. 3.

[596] _V. C. H. Worcs._, ii. 284.

[597] _V. C. H. Essex_, ii. 384.

[598] _Hist. MSS. Com._, Rep. viii. 93.

[599] _Rot. Parl._, ii. 278.

[600] Exch. K. R. Accts., 405, no. 22.

[601] _Rot. Parl._, ii. 372.

[602] Enr. Ward. Accts., 5.

[603] Memo. R., K. R., 21 Eliz., East., m. 106.

[604] _Rep. Dep. Keeper of Recs._, xxxviii. 444; suit _re_ draperies at
Norwich, 1601.

[605] Thorold Rogers, _Six Centuries of Work and Wages_, 46.

[606] The suggestion that this law caused the trade to be established
in Norwich (_Recs. of Norwich_, II. xii.) can hardly be correct, as
there was no forest in Norfolk.

[607] For instances of the infringement of these and other regulations,
see _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 331-5; _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 259.

[608] Lansd. MS., 74, 55.

[609] _V. C. H. Oxon._, ii. 254.

[610] _V. C. H. Essex_, ii. 459.

[611] _V. C. H. Shrops._, i. 433.

[612] _Rot. Parl._, i. 243-65.

[613] Cott. MS. Vitell., C. vi., f. 239.

[614] Lansd. MS., 74, f. 52.

[615] Add. Chart. 30687.

[616] _e.g._ at Colchester in 1425.—_V. C. H. Essex_, ii. 459; and
at Richmond in 1280.—Assize R., 1064, m. 32. In London the tanners
were held partly responsible for blocking the course of the Fleet in
1306.—_Rot. Parl._, i. 200.

[617] Customs Accts., _passim_; _e.g._ those quoted in _V. C. H.
Dorset_, ii. 327.

[618] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 114.

[619] The use of train oil instead of tallow was forbidden.

[620] _V. C. H. Northants._, ii. 311.

[621] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 421.

[622] Lansd. MS., 74, f. 48.

[623] Lansd. MS., 74, f. 53.

[624] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 364-5.

[625] _Ibid._, 331.

[626] _Ibid._, 546-7.

[627] Lansd. MS., 74, f. 49.

[628] _Ibid._, 60.

[629] _i.e._ myrtle.

[630] Lansd. MS., 74, f. 53.

[631] _Ibid._, f. 48.

[632] _Ibid._, f. 58.

[633] At Colchester in 1425 the charge for tawing a horse hide was
14d., a buckskin 8d., doe 5d., and calf 2d.—_V. C. H. Essex_, ii. 459.

[634] Right Buffe were made from 'Elke Skynnes or Iland hides brought
out of Muscovia or from by Est'; the counterfeits were of horse, ox,
and stag skins.—Lansd. MS., 74, f. 53.

[635] The price given for Spanish skins is probably an error; possibly
the values of the 'right' and 'counterfeit' are reversed.

[636] In 1347 the London white tawyers charged 6s. 8d. for working a
'dyker [a packet of ten] of Scottes stagges or Irysshe,' and 10s. for
the 'dyker of Spanysshe stagges.'—Riley, _Mems. of London_, 234.

[637] Corveiser was a still more common name for a shoemaker.

[638] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 572-3.

[639] _Liber Albus_, ii. 441-5.

[640] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 136.

[641] _Ibid._, 391.

[642] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 108.

[643] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 43.

[644] _Ibid._, ii. 105.

[645] _Liber Albus_, ii. 445.

[646] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 547.

[647] _V. C. H. Northants._, ii. 318.

[648] _Ibid._

[649] Liberate R., 50 Hen. III., n. 11.

[650] Pipe R., 31 Hen. I.

[651] _Cal. Chart. R._, ii. 34.

[652] _A Dyetary of Helth_ (E. E. T. S.), 256.

[653] _Giraldus Cambs._ (Rolls Ser.), iv. 41.

[654] _Mat. for Hist. of T. Becket_ (Rolls Ser.), iii. 30.

[655] _Mon. Franc._ (Rolls Ser.), ii. 8.

[656] _Statutes_, temp. Hen. III.

[657] '[A Brewer's assise] is xij^d highing and xij^d lowing in
the price of a quarter Malte, and evermore shilling to q^a' (=
farthing).—_Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 397. In other words, ale
was as many farthings a gallon as malt was shillings a quarter.

[658] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, 223.

[659] Assize R., 912, m. 49.

[660] _Hundred R._, ii. 216.

[661] _Cal. Chart. R._, i. 168.

[662] _Ibid._

[663] _V. C. H. Notts._, ii. 364.

[664] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 25, 678, 710.

[665] _Ibid._, 772.

[666] _Beverley Town Docts._ (Selden Soc.), liv. In 1413, 260 barrels
(30 gallons) and firkins (7½ gallons) made for Richard Bartlot of
unseasoned wood and under size were burnt.—Riley, _Mems. of London_,

[667] _e.g._ _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 261.

[668] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 319.

[669] From this it would seem that it was customary to put herbs into

[670] _Borough Customs_ (Selden Soc.), i. 185.

[671] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 386.

[672] _Liber Albus_, i. 360.

[673] _V. C. H. Worcs._, ii. 256.

[674] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.). 675. There were at least
thirty brewers in Oxford in 1380.—_V. C. H. Oxon._, ii. 159.

[675] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 318.

[676] Andrew Borde, _Introduction_ (E. E. T. S.), 123.

[677] _Op. cit._, 122.

[678] _e.g._ _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 262.

[679] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 225.

[680] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 229.

[681] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 584.

[682] _V. C. H. Oxon._, ii. 260.

[683] _Liber Albus_, i. 358.

[684] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 25.

[685] _Suss. Arch. Coll._, vii. 96.

[686] _Liber Albus_, i. 359.

[687] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 637.

[688] _V. C. H. Oxon._, ii. 260.

[689] Exch. Dep. by Com., Mich. 18-19, Eliz., no. 10.

[690] Cott. MS. Vesp., A. 22, f. 115.

[691] _Recs. of Norwich_, ii. 98.

[692] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 261.

[693] _Dyetary_ (E. E. T. S.), 256.

[694] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 666.

[695] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 261.

[696] _V. C. H. Dorset_, ii. 367.

[697] Coram Rege 852, m. 23.

[698] _Recs. of Norwich_, ii. 100.

[699] _V. C. H. Shrops._, ii. 422.

[700] _V. C. H. Surrey_, ii. 382.

[701] _Ibid._, 382-4.

[702] _Dyetary_ (E. E. T. S.), 256.

[703] _V. C. H. Dorset_, ii. 369.

[704] Pipe R., 6 Hen. II., Essex; 13 Hen. II., Windsor.

[705] _Giraldus Cambr._ (Rolls Ser.), iv. 41.

[706] Pipe R., 13 John.

[707] Mins. Accts., bdle. 899.

[708] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 263.

[709] _Ibid._

[710] Mins. Accts., 1128, no. 4.

[711] _V. C. H. Sussex_, ii. 263.

[712] Memo., K. R., 17 Ric. II., Hil.

[713] _A Venetian Relation of the Island of England_ (Camden Soc.), 9.

[714] _Statutes_, 23 Edw. III.

[715] _Six Centuries of Work and Wages_, 233.

[716] _Engl. Hist. Rev._, xxi. 517.

[717] Assize R., 773.

[718] _Statutes_, 3 Edw. IV.

[719] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 163.

[720] _Statutes_, 13 Ric. II.

[721] _Ibid._, 15 Ric. II.

[722] _Parly. Rolls_, iii. 637.

[723] _Statutes_, 20 Hen. VI.

[724] _Statutes_, 4 Edw. IV.

[725] Unwin, _Gilds of London_, 139.

[726] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 32.

[727] _Norwich Recs._, ii. 278-310.

[728] _Statutes_, 28 Edw. III. Is iron raw material? Much labour has
been expended on it before it reaches the market—but the same would
apply to corn.

[729] _e.g._ Riley, _Mems. of London_, 255.

[730] _Statutes_, 11 Hen. VI.

[731] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 308.

[732] For an exhaustive examination of all that concerns wages, see the
works of Professor Thorold Rogers.

[733] From the end of the fifteenth century the gradation of payments
to workmen becomes more pronounced, marking the institution of the
modern system.

[734] In the case of carpenters, etc., employed in country districts
there appear to have been considerable variations.

[735] Exch. K. R. Accts., 472, no. 4.

[736] _Beverley Town Docts._ (Selden Soc.), 50.

[737] _Statutes_, 11 Hen. VII.

[738] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 538.

[739] _Coventry Leet Bk._, 574.

[740] _Ibid._, 673.

[741] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 253.

[742] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, 15.

[743] Exch. K. R. Accts., 467, no. 7.

[744] _Norwich Recs._, ii. 104.

[745] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 513.

[746] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 185.

[747] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 227.

[748] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 168.

[749] _Liber Cust._, i. 99.

[750] Exch. K. R. Accts., 467, no. 7.

[751] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 226, 243. It is exceptional to
find that at Leicester in 1264 the weavers were allowed to work at
night.—_Borough Recs. of Leicester_, i. 105.

[752] _Ibid._, 538.

[753] _Borough Recs. of Leicester_, i. 547.

[754] _Ibid._, 226.

[755] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, 98; _Coventry Leet Bk._, 302;
_Beverley MSS._ (Hist. MSS. Com.), 47.

[756] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 532, 246.

[757] _Ibid._, 226, 239.

[758] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 4.

[759] _Ibid._, 97.

[760] _Ibid._, 30.

[761] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 573.

[762] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 638.

[763] For reproductions of some of the marks used by worsted weavers,
see _Norwich Recs._, ii. 153.

[764] See the maps of medieval Bruges, Paris, and London in Unwin's
_Gilds of London_, 32-4.

[765] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 392.

[766] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 182.

[767] _Norwich Recs._, ii. 237.

[768] Cf. Blackwell Hall in London, the sole market for 'foreign'
cloth.—Riley, _Mems. of London_, 550.

[769] _Liber Albus_, ii. 444.

[770] _Statutes_, 37 Edw. III.

[771] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 117.

[772] _Liber Cust._, i. 118.

[773] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 180-3.

[774] The 'brakeman' reduced the bar iron to rods, ready to be drawn
into wire.

[775] _i.e._ bending.

[776] _i.e._ girdlers; middle = waist.

[777] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 85.

[778] Toulmin Smith, _English Gilds_, 184.

[779] _Ibid._

[780] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 27.

[781] _Borough Recs. of Leicester_, i. 105; _Coventry Leet Bk._, 95;
_Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 7, 8.

[782] _Beverley Town Docts._ (Selden Soc.), 53.

[783] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, 5.

[784] _Ibid._, 98.

[785] Early Chanc. Proc., 61, no. 478.

[786] _Norwich Recs._, ii. 289.

[787] _e.g. Ibid._, 199, 234; Woodruff, _Hist. of Fordwich_, 32-5.

[788] See _e.g._ _Cal. of Pat. Rolls 1419-36_, 537-88.

[789] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 346.

[790] _Liber Cust._, i. 423.

[791] _Liber Cust._, i. 423.

[792] A servant engaged by the year.—_Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii.

[793] _Coventry Leet Bk._, 573.

[794] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 106.

[795] Toulmin Smith, _English Gilds_, 179.

[796] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 278.

[797] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 127.

[798] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 549.

[799] _Ibid._, 234.

[800] _Ibid._, 244.

[801] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 84.

[802] Early Chanc. Proc., 19, no. 491.

[803] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 560-1.

[804] _e.g._ _Norwich Recs._, ii. 290; _Little Red Book of Bristol_,
ii. 125.

[805] Early Chanc. Proc., 66, no. 244.

[806] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 672.

[807] Early Chanc. Proc., 66, no. 244.

[808] _Ibid._, 38, no. 40.

[809] An ordinance of the fullers in 1418 forbade any master to take a
stranger to serve him by covenant for more than fifteen days unless he
engaged him for a whole year.—_Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 142.

[810] In the case of the London founders an intending journeyman had
to satisfy the masters of his skill; if he could not, he must either
become an apprentice or abandon the craft.—Riley, _Mems. of London_,

[811] They had to give, and were entitled to receive, eight days'
notice.—_Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 573.

[812] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 185.

[813] _Liber Albus_, ii. 444.

[814] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 106; _Norwich Recs._, ii. 104;
_Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 656.

[815] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 786.

[816] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 495.

[817] _Ibid._, 542.

[818] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 609-12.

[819] _Ibid._, 653.

[820] _Hist. MSS. Com. Coventry_, 117-18.

[821] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 694.

[822] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 656.

[823] _Ibid._, 95.

[824] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 151.

[825] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 248, 307; cf. _Acts of P. C., 1542-7_,
p. 367.

[826] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 307, 514; Lambert, _Two Thousand Years
of Gild Life_, 216.

[827] _e.g._ _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 13.

[828] See the proceedings of the court of the tailors at
Exeter.—Toulmin Smith, _English Gilds_, 299-321.

[829] _Liber Cust._, i. 122; cf. _Borough Recs. of Leicester_, i. 89.

[830] _Little Red Book of Bristol_, ii. 14.

[831] _Coventry Leet Bk._ (E. E. T. S.), 302.

[832] Riley, _Mems. of London_, 232.

[833] _Ibid._, 281.

[834] _Ibid._, 293.

[835] Lambert, _Two Thousand Years of Gild Life_, 205.

[836] Toulmin Smith, _English Gilds_, passim.

[837] _Norwich Recs._, ii. 230.

[838] Makers of 'skeps,' or baskets.

[839] _Norwich Recs._, ii. 280-2.

[840] _Norwich Recs._, ii. 111.

[841] _Ibid._, 173.

[842] Sute, probably = course.

[843] Douset = a sweetmeat of cream, eggs, and sugar.


  Abbetoft, Sir Walter de, grant to monks of Louth Park, 23.

  Aberystwyth siege, guns broken, 110.

  Abinghall, Forest of Dean, coal-working, 5.

  Adam of Corfe, marble-worker, 85.

  Adits: coal pits drained by, 8-9;
    lead mines drained by, 50;
    tin mines drained by, 65-6.

  Aketon, Nicholas de. See Nicholas de Aketon.

  Alabaster industry, 86-90.

  Alcester, legend of punishment of iron-workers, 22.

  Aldebek, tilery, 125.

  Ale: brewing and trade regulations, 186-93;
    national drink, 184-5;
    price fixed by ordinance, 185-6;
    used in stained glassmaking, 132.

  Ale-conner or taster, duties of, 189.

  Ale stakes, use of, 189.

  Alston Moor: lead mines, 39, 40-8, 60;
    Scottish king's rights over, 41.

  Alum, use as a mordant in dyeing wool, 144.

  Alwold, 'campanarius,' 96.

  Amblecote, coal-mining, 7.

  Amesbury, lead sent to, from Shropshire, 39.

  Amiens, agreement of woad merchants with Norwich, 144-5.

  Apprenticeship regulations, 229-31.

  Appys, John, lease of tileries, 124.

  Ariconium, near Ross, iron industry, 21.

  Arnoldson, Cornelys, repair of guns, 112.

  Arundel, alabaster tomb at, 88.

  Ashburnham, tile manufacture, 123-4.

  Ashburton, tin sent to, for coinage duty, 69.

  Ashdown Forest, labour employed in iron mills, 32;
    water-hammer in, 30.

  Ashford, Derbyshire, lead mine, 39.

  Assize of Bread and Ale, Assize of Cloth, etc. See Bread and Ale,
      Assize of;
    Cloth, Assize of.

  Alkynson, John, gun-founder, 113.

  Aylesham, clothmaking industry, 161, 166.

  Bakers: frauds practised by, 204;
    use of trademarks ordered, 216.

  Bakewell, Derbyshire, lead mine, 39.

  Ballard, Blase, gunner, grant to, for injuries caused by gun accident,

  Ballard, Simon, iron shot made by, at Newbridge, 111-12.

  Barbary, leather imported into England, 176.

  Bark for tanning, 174.

  Barmaster, of mine court, 40.

  Barmote. See Berghmote.

  Barnack, stone quarries, 77.

  Barnstaple, clothmaking industry, 158.

  Barri, Gerald de, cider mentioned by, 197.

  Bath: gild of smiths at, alleged, in Roman times, 21;
    Roman use of coal in temple of Minerva probable, 1.

  Bath Stone, quarries at Haslebury in Box, 78-9.

  Battle, Sussex, early iron-works at, 20.

  Battle Abbey: cider a source of income, 197;
    reference to bell casting, 96;
    stone quarry near, 76;
    tile manufacture, 123.

  Baude, Peter, discovery of method of casting cannon in entire piece,

  Beare, Thomas, on alluvial tin, 65.

  Beauvale, prior of, lease of coal mine at Newthorpe, 15.

  Becket, Thomas, ale taken to French Court, in 1157, 185.

  Bedburn forge, conditions of labour, 32.

  Bedwin, Wilts., clothmaking industry, 137.

  Beer Alston, Devon, royal lead mines, 48-51.

  Beer, Devon, stone quarries, 78, 80.

  Beer, introduction into England and development of trade, 193-5.

  Bellows, method of using in iron smelting, 27.

  Bell pits, in coal-mining, 7;
    in iron-mining, 27.

  Bells: dedication ceremony, 101;
    manufacture of, 96-107;
    tuning of, 99-100.

  Bellyeter, term for a bell-founder, 97.

  Belper: iron industry, 25;
    terms of lease of coal mine, 15.

  Belsire, tileries owned by family, 124.

  Beneit le Seynter, early bell-founder, 96.

  Benthall, lease of coal working, 14-15.

  Berghmote or Barmote, mine court in Derbyshire, 40.

  Berkshire, clothmaking industry, 167.

  Berneval, Alexander de, sent to England for alabaster, 87.

  Berwick-on-Tweed, inventory of artillery, in 1401, 109.

  Beverley: building trade, hours of work, 211;
    clothmaking industry, 134, 139;
    list of standard measures for ale kept at, 188;
    regulations for control of industry, 223;
    tile manufacture, 124-5.

  Beverley, College of, new shrine for relics of St. John of Beverley,

  Billiter Street, origin of name, 97.

  Birley in Brampton, grant of wood to monks of Louth Park, 23.

  Birlond, quarrying of slates at, 81.

  Bisham, stone quarries, 83.

  Bishop's Stortford, consecration of bells of St. Michael's, 101.

  Black Death, effect on industries, 11, 74, 201.

  Black Prince. See Edward, Black Prince.

  Blacksmiths, control of industry, 211-12, 217.

  Blakeney, Forest of Dean, coal-working, 5.

  Blanket, Thomas, cloth-weaver in Bristol, 141.

  Blanket cloth, manufacture, 168.

  Blaunchlond, Northumberland, lead mine, 60.

  Bloom, in iron-working, meaning of term, 28, 30;
    variations in weight, 30-31.

  Bloomery, meaning of term, 29.

  Blund, William and Robert le, probable identity with William and Robert
      of Corfe, 85.

  Bocher, Robert, alabaster-worker, 89.

  Bodiam Castle, gun found in moat, 111.

  Bodmatgan quarry, slates from, 81.

  Bodmin, tin sent to, for coinage duty, 69.

  'Boldon Book,' 1183, references to use of coal, 2-3.

  Bole furnace, type used in lead mines, 51.

  Bolerium of Diodorus Siculus, question of identity, 62.

  Bolles, William, legal action, 13.

  Bolsover, Manor of, 10, 11.

  Bordale, Edmund, of Bramley, glass purchased from, 130.

  Borde, Andrew, on ale, 184, 190;
    beer, 193;
    cider and perry, 196.

  Boston, Lincs., clothmaking industry, 139.

  Boughton Monchelsea, stone worked at, 80, 83.

  Boundary stones, custom of burying coal under, 3-4.

  Brabant weavers in London, 225.

  Bradley, Staffordshire, coal-mining, 7.

  Braintree, clothmaking industry, 157.

  Brasier, Richard, bell-founder of Norwich, 105-7.

  Bread and ale, assize of, beginning of national control of industry,

  Bremerhaven, export of coal to, 18.

  Breton, Ralph, gift of money for bell to Rochester Cathedral Priory, 96.

  Brewing: ale, universal and regulation of, 186-93;
    beer, 193-5;
    cider, 196-8.

  Bricks, manufacture of, 125-6.

  Brill, iron sent to, from Forest of Dean, 23.

  Bristol: clothmaking industry, 141, 144, 145-6, 148, 150-1, 154;
    coal exported, in 1592, 18;
    gun-founding industry, 110;
    leather trade, 174;
    regulations for control of industries, 181, 182, 191, 216-19, 223,
      227-9, 235.

  Bromfield, Shropshire, lead-miners recruited from, for Devon, 57.

  Brown, Roger, of Norwich, shoemaker, 181.

  Brushford, near Dulverton, lead mine, 59.

  Buggeberd, Adam, rector of South Peret, dispute over Whitchurch bells
      referred to, 100.

  Building industry: hours of work at Beverly, 211;
    reasons for not treating subject, vi.

  Burel cloth, manufacture of, 136-7.

  Burford family, bell-founders, 102.

  Burges, Toisaunts, brought to England to teach art of calendering
      worsteds, 165.

  Burle, Nicholas, of London, seizure of hides, 175.

  Burnard, Richard, clothier of Barnstaple, 158.

  Burton-on-Trent, alabaster-workers, 89.

  Bury St. Edmunds: bell-founding industry, 105;
    quarry in Barnack owned by abbey of, 77.

  Buttercrambe, Plaster of Paris obtained from, 89-90.

  Byland, Abbey of, grant of iron mine to, 1180, 23.

  Caen, stone quarries, 78, 80.

  Calendering worsteds, introduction of art, 165-6.

  Cambrai, Siege of, 1339, guns used, 107.

  Cannons. See Gun-founding.

  Canon, Richard, carver and marble-worker, 85.

  Canterbury: ale famous, 185;
    bell-founding industry, 105.

  Canterbury Cathedral, alabaster tomb of Henry IV. and Queen Joan, 88.

  Capitalists, conflict of interests in the gilds, 226-36.

  Cappers of Coventry, regulations for control of industry, 227, 231.

  Carlisle, Castle of, brass cannons for, in 1385, 108.

  Carretate, weight for lead, varieties, 56.

  Carving, English skill in Middle Ages, 87.

  Cassiterides or Tin Islands, question of identification, 62.

  Castor, Northants., Roman British pottery, 114-15.

  Causton, Alice, punished for selling short measure of ale, 188.

  Cavalcante, John, of Florence, cannon and saltpetre supplied by, 112-13.

  Chafery, in iron-smelting, 30.

  Chagford, tin sent to, for coinage duty, 69.

  Chalder or chaldron, measure, 17-18.

  Chaldon, stone quarries, 77.

  Chalk, quarrying for conversion into lime, 90-1.

  Chalons, cloth, origin of name and manufacture in England, 138.

  Chalons-sur-Marne, cloth manufacture, 138.

  Chamois (shamoys) leather, trade regulations, 176-7.

  Charcoal: confused with sea coal by Alexander Neckam, 3;
    only fuel used for iron-working, 26.

  Charcoal-burners employed in iron industry, 36-7.

  Cheapside, goldsmiths' shops, 95.

  Chellaston, alabaster quarries, 87.

  Chertsey Abbey, inlaid tiles discovered, 127.

  Cheshire, lead-miners recruited for Devon, 57.

  Chester: brewing-trade dues paid to castle of, 187;
    gild of smiths at, in Roman times, 21.

  Chichester Cathedral, Purbeck marble used, 84.

  Chiddingfold, glassmaking industry, 127-9.

  Child labour, order restricting, in 1398, 229.

  Chilvers Coton, coal-mining, 6.

  Chimneys, increase in number, in sixteenth century, 19.

  Chirche, Reginald, bell-founder, 101.

  Chislehurst, chalk quarries, 91.

  Choke damp, 8, 16.

  Cider industry, 196-8.

  Cistercian ware, distinctive features, 118.

  Clee, forest of, coal-working, 6.

  Cleveland, iron industry, 25.

  Clifford, Walter de, licence to Sir John de Halston (c. 1260), 5-6.

  Cloth, Assize of, beginning of a national control of industry, 201.

  Clothmaking industry: development and principal centres, 133-41;
    Edward III.'s efforts to improve, 140-1, 201;
    frauds and regulations against, 159-64, 204-6;
    legislative control, 136-7, 160-4, 201, 205, 216;
    numbers employed and output of cloth, 156-9;
    processes used, 141-56;
    quality of English cloth prior to time of Edward III., 136;
    subjection of workers evidenced by restrictive regulations, 134-5;
    varieties of cloth made, 164-70.

  Coal: burying under boundary stones, 3-4;
    discovery in 1620 of method of using for iron-works, 26, 37;
    early significance of the word, 2-3;
    restriction of use to iron-working and lime-burning, 4-5, 90-1;
    Roman use of, in Britain, 1-2;
    smoke nuisance complained of, 6;
    trade returns, 18-19;
    value, 13-14;
    weighing of, measures employed, 14, 17-18.

  Coal-mining: bell pits described, 7;
    choke damp mentioned, 8, 16;
    early methods of working, 7-11;
    first references to actual workings, 5-6;
    mineral rights, 11-18;
    terms of leases, 14-16.

  Coggeshall, clothmaking industry, 140, 157.

  Cogware, origin of term, 143.

  Coinage duty on tin, 68-9, 74.

  Colchester: clothmaking industry, 140, 156, 168;
    leather trade, 172, 173;
    Roman pottery manufacture, 115;
    tile industry regulations, 120-1.

  Coleford, Roman iron-works at, 20.

  Collard, Robert, tilemaker, 125.

  Collyweston, stone slates, 82.

  Colyn, Thomas, alabaster-worker, 88.

  Competition, efforts to restrict, 222-5, 226-7.

  Control of industry: gild regulations, 206-40;
    legislation for, 200-12.

  Cope, in bell-founding, 98.

  Corby, agreement of woad merchants with Norwich, 144-5.

  Cordwainers: journeyman fraternity formed, 233;
    origin of name, 180;
    trade regulations, 181-3.

  Core, in bell-founding, 98.

  Corfe, Dorset: Purbeck marble industry, 85;
    stone quarry, 79.

  Cornwall, Duke of, vested with supreme control of the stannaries, 72.

  Cornwall: brewing trade, 190;
    clothmaking industry, 158;
    gold, search for, 61;
    slate quarrying, 81-2;
    tin-mining, 62-74.

  Corvehill, William, bell-founder, 107.

  Costume of miners, depicted in Newland Church, 36.

  Courts. See Law Courts.

  Coventry: brewing trade and regulations for, 187-9, 191;
    Cappers' gild regulations, 212, 227, 230-1;
    clothmaking industry, 146-7, 169;
    gilds controlled by civic authorities, 208;
    iron-workers, trade restrictions, 219-21, 232;
    journeyman gilds or confraternities, 234, 235;
    treatment of strangers, 222;
    trial of trade disputes in spiritual courts, 236.

  Cowick, Yorkshire, payment by potters for digging clay, 118.

  Crangs, Burcord, melting-house at Larian in Cornwall, 66-7.

  Créçy, battle of, guns used by English, 107.

  Crich, Derbyshire, lead mine, 39.

  Croker, Nicholas, coppersmith, 96.

  Crowchard, John, gun repaired by, 112.

  Crowland Abbey, quarry in Barnack, 77.

  Croxden Abbey, bell recast, in 1313, 99.

  Culhare, Emma, killed by choke-damp, 8.

  Culverden, William, bell-founder, 100.

  Cumberland, lead-mining, 46, 60-1.

  Customs and Duties: alien merchandise, on, 224-5;
    coal, 5, 18;
    coinage on tin, 68-9, 74.

  Dale, Abbey of, Derbyshire, inlaid tile manufacture, 127.

  Damlade, uncertain meaning of the word, 81.

  Darcy, Edmund, royal grant to, for searching and sealing leather, 179.

  Darlington, clothmaking industry, 134.

  Dean, Forest of: coal-mining, 5, 11;
    iron industry, 23, 29, 34-6.

  Dearns, meaning of term, 9.

  De la Fava, of Mechlin. See La Fava.

  Denby: coal-mining accident, in 1291, 8;
    iron mine, 22-3.

  Derbyshire: alabaster quarries, 87;
    coal-mining, 6-8;
    iron industry, 25, 27;
    lead-mining, 39-48, 54, 56, 57-8.

  Devon: clothmaking industry, 144, 158, 167;
    gold discovered, 61;
    lead-mining, 43, 48-9, 50-8;
    slate quarrying, 81;
    stone quarry at Beer, 78;
    tin-mining, 62-74.

  Dewysse, Edward, beer brewer, 194.

  Diodorus Siculus, statements respecting British tin trade, 62.

  Dorset: clothmaking industry, frauds practised, 161;
    lead-miners recruited for Devon, 57;
    Purbeck marble industry, 84-5;
    stone quarries, 79.

  Douset, term explained, 240.

  Dover: bells cast for, 105;
    cannon for castle, in 1401, 108-9.

  Dowson, John, gun-founder, 113.

  Doys, John, beer brewer, case of theft against, 194.

  Dudley, Dud, discovery of methods of using coal for iron-works, in 1620,
      26, 37.

  Duffield Frith: coal obtained from, in 1257, 6;
    iron industry, 25.

  Dunkirk, export of coal to, 18.

  Dunstan, St., patron of the goldsmiths, 92.

  Durham: coal-mining, 9;
    lead mines granted to bishop by King Stephen, 39-40.

  Dutch: beer a natural drink for, 193;
    expert gun-founders, 111.

  Duties. _See_ Customs and Duties.

  Dyeing industry: processes employed for cloth, 144-8;
    regulations for control of, 229, 234.

  Eastbourne, green sandstone quarry, 79.

  Ebchester, Durham, discovery at, of Roman use of coal, 1.

  Edmund of Cornwall, tin worked for, in 1297, 65.

  Edward III.: efforts to improve cloth trade, 140-1, 201;
    metal cast figure of, 95.

  Edward, the Black Prince, plate presented to, 94.

  Egremont, iron mine, 22.

  Egwin, St., legend of punishment of iron-workers of Alcester, 22.

  Egynton, John, dyer, trade dispute, 146-7.

  Eleanor, Queen: driven from Nottingham Castle by coal smoke, 6;
    metal cast figure of, 95.

  Eleanor Crosses, Purbeck marble supplied for, 85.

  Ely: bells cast, 103;
    wall tiles or bricks for, 125.

  Elyng, meaning of term, 28.

  Encaustic tiles, process of manufacture, 126-7.

  Essex, clothmaking industry, 157, 166, 168.

  Essex, straits, narrow cloths, 140.

  Eton college, stained glass for, 130.

  Eure, Sir William, lease of coal mines, 16.

  Exeter Cathedral: marble work for, 85;
    Portland stone used, 79;
    resident bell-founders appointed, 104-5·

  Fairlight Quarry, near Hastings, stone for Rochester castle, 79, 80.

  Faringdon, William, renowned goldsmith, 93.

  Farriers: allowed to shoe on Sundays and feast days, 213;
    mutual assistance regulations, 237.

  Faudkent, Peter, Dochman, stained glass purchased from, 131.

  Fécamp Abbey, alabaster procured from England by abbot, 87.

  Fenby, Thomas de, dyer of Coventry, trade dispute, 146-7.

  Ferry, coal mines, 9.

  Finchale monks, coal-mining operations, 9.

  Fishmongers, regulation of trade, 219.

  Fiskerton, brewing-trade dues, 187.

  Fitz Odo, goldsmiths. See Fitz Otho.

  Fitz Osbert, William, grant to abbey of Byland, 1180, 23.

  Fitz Otho, Edward, goldsmith of Henry III., bells cast by, 102.

  Fitz Otho family, king's goldsmiths and masters of the mint, 92.

  Flanders: beer introduced into England from, 193;
    glassmaker brought to England, in 1449, 130-1;
    settlement in England of craftsmen from, 225.

  Fletcher's lead mine in Alston, 60.

  Flushing, export of coal to, 18.

  Folkestone, stone quarry, 80.

  Forest Assize of 1244, references to coal-mining, 5.

  Forges, itinerant, in Forest of Dean, 29.

  Fortuno de Catalengo, purchase of cannon from, 112.

  Fotinel, weight for lead, 56.

  Founders of metal, notable examples of work, 95-6.

  Fountains Abbey, ware found in, 118.

  Franciscans in London, poverty evidenced by quality of their ale, 185.

  Frankwell, William, water for tanning at Lewes, 173.

  Frese, William, gunmaker, 112.

  Friezes, types manufactured, 169-70.

  Friscobaldi, Italian merchants, lease of Devon lead mines, 56-7.

  Fuller's earth, used for cleansing cloth, 154-5.

  Fulling of cloth: process employed, 153-5;
    use of trademarks ordered, 216.

  Furnaces, types employed, 28, 51-3, 66.

  Furness Abbey, iron industry, 25, 27, 31.

  Galloway, Mr., his _Annals of Coal Mining_, ix.

  Gateshead, coal-mining, 9, 11.

  Geddyng, John, glazier, 129.

  Gerard le Flemeng, cloth weaver, 137.

  Germans: expert gun-founders, 111;
    skilled miners, 59.

  Gildesburgh, Robert, dispute over tuning of bells, 99-100.

  Gilds: clothweavers, alien weavers in London, 225;
    charters granted by Henry I. and Henry II., 135;
    enforced holidays, 151;
    payments to the king, in twelfth century, 133-4;
    restriction of competition, 226-7.

  —— conflict of class interests in, 225-36.

  —— control of industry by regulations, 206-40.

  —— cordwainers at Oxford, 183.

  —— fullers of Lincoln, regulations, 153-4.

  —— journeymen's efforts to form, 233-5.

  —— origin of, 206-7.

  —— religious element in organisation, 237-40.

  Glasewryth, John, glassmaker in Chiddingfold district, 129.

  Glassmaking industry, 127-32.

  Glastonbury, lake village, evidences of weaving discovered, 133.

  Glaze, for pottery, process, 116-17.

  Gloucester: bell-founding industry, 103;
    brewing-trade regulations, 192;
    clothmaking industry, 134, 161.

  Gloucestershire: iron industry, 22, 24, 28;
    lead-mining, 39, 57.

  Gloucester, vale of, vine cultivation, 198.

  Goderswyk, William, mining grant to, 60-1.

  Gold-mining, 61.

  Goldsmiths, early records of, 92-4.

  Goldsmiths' Row, London, built by Thomas Wood, 95.

  Goodrich, Roman iron-works at, 21.

  Goryng, John, case against beer brewers, 194.

  Goykyn, Godfrey, English guns made by, 111.

  Graffham, Sussex, potteries, 117.

  Gray, Sir Thomas, lease of Whickham coal mines, 16.

  Green, Ralph, alabaster tomb in Lowick Church, 88.

  Greenwich, chalk and lime sent to London, 91.

  Griff, charge for sinking coal pits, 10.

  Guildford: chalk quarries, 91;
    clothmaking industry, 138, 168.

  Guildford Castle, tiles from Shalford, 124.

  Guildford cloths, reputation injured by frauds, 155, 205.

  Guildhall, London, ordnance at, in 1339, 107.

  Gun-founding industry: account of, 107-13;
    discovery of method of casting cannon in entire piece, 113;
    projectiles used, 80-81, 109.

  Gypsum, conversion into Plaster of Paris, 89-90.

  Hackington, tileries, 124.

  Halingbury, William, promotion of art of calendering worsteds, 165.

  Hall, Robert, clothier of Winchester, 158.

  Halston, Sir John de, licensed to dig for coals in Clee forest, 5-6.

  Hammers, water, for iron industry, 30.

  Hampshire: clothmaking industry, 167;
    stone quarries, 79.

  Hanbury, earliest sepulchral image in alabaster at, 86.

  Harrison, William: ale disparaged by, 195;
    cider and perry mentioned by, 196;
    his _Description of England_, 19.

  Hartkeld, coal mines, 16.

  Haslebury quarry, 78-9.

  Hassal, slate-quarrying at, 81.

  Hastings: kilns for making inlaid tiles discovered, 127;
    pottery, stamp decoration, 118.

  Hatfield, Bishop of Durham, lease of coal mines, 16.

  Hatters, use of trademark ordered, 216.

  Hawkin of Liége, metal-founder, 95.

  Helere, Edmund, lease of tileries, 124.

  Helston: brewing trade, 190;
    nomination of members for stannary parliament, 72;
    tin sent to, for coinage dues, 69.

  Henry III., metal cast figure of, 95.

  Henry IV., alabaster tomb at Canterbury, 88.

  Henry V., inventory of goods quoted, 139.

  Henry of Lewes, the king's chief smith, 24.

  Henshawe, William, bell-founder at Gloucester, 103.

  Hereford: blankets made at, 168;
    iron industry, 22;
    regulations for control of industry, 223.

  Hermann de Alemannia, lead mine worked by, 59.

  Herrings, Yarmouth monopoly of sale on east coast, 203.

  Heworth, charge for sinking coal pits, 10.

  Hides, trade regulations, 174-5.

  Hill, Nicholas, alabaster-worker, 89.

  Hogge, Ralph, discovery of method of casting cannon in entire piece,

  Holewell, Thomas, alabaster-worker, 88.

  Holidays, regulations, 212-14.

  Hope, Derbyshire, lead mines, 39.

  Hops, restrictions on use, 194-5.

  Horsham, stone slate quarries, 82.

  Houghton, Yorkshire, customs respecting mineral rights, 12.

  Hours of labour, regulations, 211-12.

  Huddleston, stone quarries, 77.

  Hugh of Scheynton, lease of coal mine, 14-15.

  Hull: tile manufacture, 124;
    weaving trade regulations, 237.

  Humbert, Duke, lease of lead mines at Wirksworth, 39.

  Huntingdon, clothmaking industry, 133.

  Hussey, Sir William, action against, 13.

  Ictis of Diodorus Siculus, question of identity, 62-3.

  Industry, control of. See Control of Industry.

  Inspection of goods in Middle Ages, 216-17.

  Ipswich, tolls on English cloth, 139-40.

  Irish friezes, manufacture of, 169-70.

  Iron, price of, and parliamentary attempt to regulate, 31, 208-9.

  Iron-mining: free miners of the Forest of Dean, their privileges, 34-6;
    methods of working, 26-30;
    numbers employed and conditions of labour, 31-6;
    places noted for, 22-6;
    Roman activity in Britain, 20-1;
    weight of the bloom, variations in, 30-1;
    wood consumption in sixteenth century, 36-7.

  Jack of Newbury. See Winchcombe, John.

  Jervaulx Abbey: grant to, by Earl of Richmond, 1281, 29;
    ware found at, 118.

  John, King, tomb at Worcester, in Purbeck marble, 84.

  John de Alemaygne, of Chiddingfold, glassmaker, 128.

  John de Stafford, mayor of Leicester, bell-founder, 103.

  John, Duke of Bretagne, alabaster tomb at Nantes, 88.

  John Glasman of Ruglay, glass purchased from, 130.

  John of Chester, glazier, designs for stained glass, 131-2.

  John of Gloucester, bell-founder, 103.

  John, St., of Alexandria, mention in life of, of British tin trade, 63.

  John, St., of Beverley, new shrine for relics, in 1292, 93-4.

  Johnson, Cornelys, gun-founder, 113.

  Journeymen, regulation of employment, 231-5.

  Julius Cæsar, on iron in Britain, 20.

  Julius Vitalis, armourer of the 20th Legion, funeral at Bath, 21.

  Keel or coal barge, regulation of capacity, 17.

  Kendal, clothmaking industry, 143, 169.

  Kent: chalk-quarrying, 91;
    clothmaking industry, 137, 158;
    gun-founding, 113;
    iron industry, 24, 26;
    Roman British pottery in, 114;
    stone quarries, 77-8, 80-1;
    tile manufacture, 121-4.

  Kentish rag, stone, demand for, 77-8, 80.

  Kersey, village, clothmaking industry, 166.

  Kerseys, manufacture of, 166-8.

  Keswick, lead mine, 60.

  Kilns, types used, 90, 115, 116, 126.

  King's College, Cambridge, stained glass for, 130-1.

  Kingston on Thames, pottery manufacture, 117.

  Kipax, Yorkshire, customs respecting mineral rights, 12.

  Kirkstall Abbey, ware found at, 118.

  Labour, control of. See Control of Industry.

  Labourers, Statute of, enactments, 201-2.

  La Fava, Lewis de, of Mechlin, purchase of cannon from, 112.

  Lanchester, Durham: discovery at, of Roman use of coal, 1;
    Roman method of smelting iron at, 26.

  Langton, Walter de, bishop of Chester, on yield of Beer Alston mine, 51.

  Larian in Cornwall, cost of a melting-house at, 66-7.

  Launceston, nomination of members for stannary parliament, 72.

  Laurence Vitrarius, glassmaker at Chiddingfold, 128.

  Law Courts: miners, 35-6, 40, 72;
    settlement of trade disputes, for, 236.

  Lead-mining: methods of working, 50-5;
    organisation of miners, 40-8;
    payments to the king and to the lord of the soil, 46-8;
    principal localities, 39-40;
    productiveness of mines, 56-61;
    prospecting regulations, 43-6;
    Roman workings, 38-9;
    wages and number of hands employed, 48-51.

  Leadreeve, of mine court, 40.

  Leakes of Southwark, beer brewers, 195.

  Leather industry: account of, 171-83;
    frauds in preparation and sale, 177-9, 205;
    night work prohibited, 215;
    regulations for control of, 215-16, 229, 237-8;
    shoemaking, regulations, 180-3;
    table of values of different kinds of leather, 179-80.

  Leathersellers' Company, inefficiency of control over trade, 177-8.

  Leeds, bell pits near, 7.

  Leeds Castle, cost of iron for repairs in time of Edward III., 31.

  Lewis, George Randall, indebtedness to acknowledged, ix, 64.

  Lichfield Cathedral, dedication of bell, 1477, 101.

  Lime-burning, 4-5, 90-1.

  Limekilns, kind used, 90.

  Liminge, land at, granted to Abbey of St. Peter of Canterbury, 22.

  Lincoln: clothmaking industry, 133, 136, 139, 153-4;
    pottery, stamp decoration, 118;
    Purbeck marble for Eleanor cross, 85;
    regulations for control of industry, 222, 228.

  Liskeard, tin sent to, for coinage duty, 69.

  List, in cloth, term explained, 136.

  Liverpool, coal exported, in 1592, 18.

  Logwood, use as a dye forbidden, 148.

  London: ale brewing, regulations, 190-1;
    beer brewing in, 193-5;
    bell-founding industry, 101-2;
    cloth making industry, 133, 137, 140, 147, 154;
    regulations for control of industries, 204, 207-15, 219, 225-33, 236;
    roofing with tiles made compulsory, 1212, 119;
    shoemaking trade regulations, 181-3;
    walls built of Kentish rag, 77.

  Loop, in iron working, meaning of term, 30.

  Lostwithiel: nomination of members for stannary parliament, 72;
    slates probably quarried at, 81-2;
    tin sent to, for coinage duty, 69.

  Louth Park, grant to monks, 23.

  Low countries, settlement in England of craftsmen from, 225.

  Lowick Church, Northants., alabaster tomb in, 88.

  Lune, Galias de, mining grant to, 61.

  Lynne, clothmaking industry, 165.

  Madder, use in dyeing wool, 148.

  Magna Carta, cloth trade regulations in, 136.

  Maidstone, stone quarries, 77, 80, 81, 109.

  Maldon, clothmaking industry, 140, 168.

  Malemort family, employment in iron-works at St. Briavels, 24.

  Malvern Priory, manufacture of inlaid tiles, 127.

  Marble, Purbeck. See Purbeck marble.

  Marchall, John, mining grant to, 60.

  Marcus le Fair, clothier of Winchester, 158.

  Maresfield, Sussex, iron-works in Roman times, 20.

  Markets: held on Sundays in thirteenth century, 214;
    segregation of trades, 217-18.

  Marlborough: brewing-trade regulations, 187;
    clothmaking industry, 134, 137.

  Martinstowe: silver sent to London, in 1294, 55;
    slates used for roofing, 81;
    stone quarries, pay of workers, 82-3.

  Mason, Peter, payment to, for alabaster for St. George's Chapel,
      Windsor, 87.

  Matlock, lead workings of Roman period, 38.

  Meaux Abbey: dispute with tilers of Beverley, 124-5;
    tannery at, details given, 173.

  Mendips, lead mines: methods of working, 53;
    organisation of miners, 40-8;
    productiveness, 58-9;
    worked by the Romans, 38.

  Metal-working: bell-founding, 96-107;
    gun-founding, 107-13;
    payment for workmanship, 93-4;
    regulation of hours of work in London, 213;
    use of trademark ordered, 216.

  Metesford, Derbyshire, lead mine, 39.

  Michel, Henry, bell-founder, 99.

  Middle Ages, definition of period, vii.

  Middlewood, sea coal at, 4.

  Midhurst, payment by potters to the lord of the manor, 118.

  Mildenhall, recasting of bell and dispute over, 106-7.

  Mile End Range, 110.

  Millyng, Albert, of Cologne, mining grant to, 60-1.

  Mine Law Courts. See Law Courts, miners.

  Mining of coal, iron, lead, etc. See coal, iron, lead, etc.

  Minsterley, Shropshire, lead workings of Roman period, 38.

  Monkswood, near Tintern, timber consumed at iron-works, 37.

  Moorhouse, coal-mining at, 9.

  Mordant, in dyeing, those used in Middle Ages, 144.

  Moresby, Hugh de, charter to Furness Abbey, 27.

  Morley, Derbyshire, coal-mining accidents, 7-8.

  Nantes Cathedral, alabaster tomb of John of Bretagne, 88.

  Naturalisation, letters of, numerous in fifteenth century, 224-5.

  Neckam, Alexander, on coal, 3.

  Newark, brewing-trade dues, 187.

  Newbridge, in Ashdown Forest, iron shot manufactured, 111.

  Newbury, clothmaking industry, 167.

  Newcastle, coal-mining and trade, 6, 18-19.

  New Forest, Roman British pottery from, 114.

  Newland Church, brass depicting a free miner, 36.

  Newminster, use of coal by monks, 4.

  Newport, William, guns made by, 112.

  Newthorpe, coal mine, terms of lease, 15.

  Newthorpe Mere, Gresley, outrage at coal mine, 13.

  Nicholas de Aketon, grant to monks of Newminster, 4.

  Night work, rules against, 214-15.

  Norfolk, clothmaking industry, 138-9, 161, 164-6, 205.

  Northampton: Purbeck marble for Eleanor cross, 85;
    shoemaking regulations, 183.

  Northamptonshire: Roman British pottery, 114-15;
    stone slates quarried at Collyweston, 82.

  Northumberland: coal-mining, 6;
    lead-mining, 60-1.

  Norwich: bell-founding industry, 105;
    brewing trade regulations, 192-3, 195;
    clothmaking industry, 144-5, 148-9, 150, 162, 165, 168;
    gilds controlled by civic authorities, 208;
    holidays, regulations, 212;
    market regulations, 217;
    pageants and gild feasts, 238-40;
    roofing with tiles made compulsory, 119;
    strangers, restrictive regulations, 223-4.

  Nottingham: alabaster industry, 87-9;
    clothmaking industry, 133, 150;
    smoke nuisance, in 1257, 6.

  Nottinghamshire, coal-mining, 6.

  Nuneaton, coal-mining, 7, 15.

  Nutfield, Fuller's earth deposits, 155.

  Oldham, Lancs., bell pits at, 7.

  Ordnance, casting of, 107-13.

  Osetes of Bristol, cloths, 140.

  Oswy, king of Kent, grant to Abbey of St. Peter of Canterbury, 21-2.

  Otto, the goldsmith, 92.

  Oxford: brewing-trade regulations, 191-2;
    clothmaking industry, 133, 167;
    leather-trade industries, 172, 183.

  Pageants of gilds and fraternities, 238-40.

  Pagham, Sussex, cider industry, 197.

  Pakenham, John, cider orchard at Wisborough, 198.

  Parman, John, clothier of Barnstaple, 158.

  Pascayl, Robert, lease of coal mine, 15.

  Peak, Derbyshire, lead-miners recruited for Devon, 57.

  Penpark Hole, Gloucs., lead mine mentioned, in 882, 39.

  Pepercorn, William, draining of Beer Alston mine, 51.

  Perry drunk in Middle Ages, 196.

  Peter at Gate, tiles manufactured by, 123.

  Peter de Brus, forges on lands in Cleveland, 1271, 25.

  Peterborough Abbey, quarry in Barnack, 77.

  Pevensey, walls and castle built of green sandstone from Eastbourne, 79.

  Pewter-work, 95;
    apprentices, 229.

  Peyeson, Adam, lease of coal mine, 14-15.

  Peyto family, glassmakers, 129.

  Philippa, Queen, metal cast figure of, 95.

  Phœnicians, tin trade with Britain doubtful, 62.

  _Piers Plowman_, quoted, 141.

  Plaster of Paris, conversion of alabaster into, 89-90.

  Playden, village, grave of Cornelius Zoetmann, 194.

  Plessey, near Blyth, early mention of coal from, 4.

  Plympton, tin sent to, for coinage duty, 69.

  Poole, Dorset, beer and ale export trade, 194.

  Popenreuter, Hans, purchase of cannon from, 112.

  Poppehowe, Thomas, worker in alabaster, 88.

  Portland stone, fame in Middle Ages, 79.

  Potteresgavel, rent paid by potters, 118.

  Pottery manufacture, 114-18.

  Prentis, Thomas, alabaster-worker, 87-8.

  Prest, Godfrey, coppersmith, 96.

  Prices, regulation of, 208-10.

  Projectiles, 80-1, 109.

  Protection of industries, effect of, 203-4.

  Pucklechurch, Gloucs., iron industry, 22.

  Punishments by mine law, 42-3.

  Purbeck marble industry, 84-6.

  Quarell guns, 109.

  Quarrying, 76-91.

  Quivil, Bishop Peter de, care of bells of Exeter Cathedral, 104.

  Radlett, pottery manufacture by Romans, 115.

  Raly, coal mine, 16.

  Ramsey, Abbey of, quarry in Barnack, 77.

  Randolf, William, payment to, for metal-work, 94.

  Reading, clothmaking industry, 156.

  Redbrook, Roman iron-works at, 21.

  Reginald, Bishop, of Bath, lead mines granted to, 40.

  Reigate: Fuller's earth deposits, 155;
    stone quarries, 77-8, 80.

  Repton: lease of lead mines at Wirksworth by Abbess, 39;
    manufacture of inlaid tiles, 127.

  Restormel, Cornwall, slates used for roofing, 81.

  Richard I., reorganisation of the stannaries, 1198, 73.

  Richard II., metal-work of tomb and payment for, 96.

  Richmond, Earl of, 1281, grants to the monks of Jervaulx, 29.

  Richmond, Yorks., copper mine, 60.

  Ridding, in iron-mining, meaning of term, 35.

  Riley, Mr., indebtedness to, acknowledged, ix.

  Ringmer, in Sussex, potteries, 116, 118, 123.

  Robard, Pieter, alias Graunte Pierre, iron-founder, 112.

  Robert le Bellyetere, care of bells of Exeter Cathedral, 104-5.

  Robert of Corfe, worker in Purbeck marble, 85.

  Robertes, Henry, Serjeant, quarell guns provided by, 109.

  Rochester stone sent to, from Beer in Devon, 78.

  Rochester Castle, list of stone for, in 1367, 79-80.

  Rochester Priory: bell recast in twelfth century, 96;
    perquisites of under brewers, 192.

  Roger of Faringdon, maker of shrine at Beverley, 93-4.

  Rogers, Thorold, on effect of Statute of Labourers, 202.

  Romans in Britain: coal used by, 1-2;
    iron-mining, 20-1;
    lead mines, 38-9;
    pottery manufacture, 114-15.

  Roofing: slates worked for, 81-2;
    tiles manufactured for, 119.

  Ropley family, glassmakers, 129.

  Royley, Richard and Gabriel, alabaster-workers, 89.

  Rye, hops imported, 194.

  Saddlers, 233-35.

  St. Albans Abbey: consecration of bells, 101;
    metal workers among monks, 93.

  St. Austell, Cornwall, Saxon remains discovered in tin grounds, 63.

  St. Bees, grant of iron-mine to monks, 22.

  St. Briavels: forge at castle for construction of war materials, 24;
    Mine Law Courts, 35-6;
    payment to Constable for loads of coal, 5.

  St. Clere, statement respecting gold in Devon and Cornwall, in 1545, 61.

  St. George's Chapel, Windsor: alabaster reredos, 87;
    glass supplied from Chiddingfold, 128.

  St. Laurence, Reading, dedication of bell, 101.

  St. Mary-at-Hill, London, bells recast, in 1510, 100.

  St. Paul's Cathedral, contract for paving, 85.

  St. Peter of Canterbury, Abbey of, grant to, of land at Liminge, in
      689, 22.

  St. Peter's Abbey at Gloucester, candlestick in South Kensington
      Museum, 92.

  St. Stephen's Chapel, Westminster: glass from Chiddingfold, 128;
    marble for columns, 85;
    stained glass, process employed, 131-2;
    stone sent from Beer in Devon, 78.

  Salisbury, clothmaking industry, 158.

  Sandwich, export of chalk, 91.

  Sawtry Abbey, quarry in Barnack and disputes over, 77.

  Saxons: few traces of iron-works in Britain, 21-2;
    tin worked in Cornwall, 63.

  Sconeburgh, Gerard, beer brewer, case of theft against, 194.

  Sea coal: origin of term, 2-3;
    references to use of, 4-5.

  Sea Coal Lane, London, mention, in 1228, 4.

  Seaford, brewing trade, 191.

  Search, system of. See Inspection of goods.

  Selebourne, Hants, stone quarries, 79.

  Sester, in brewing trade, 187-8.

  Severn, customs on sea coal brought down, 5.

  Seyntleger, Thomas, case against beer brewers, 194.

  Shalford tileries, 124.

  Shamelling, meaning of term, 65.

  Shamoys leather. See Chamois.

  Sheffield in Fletching, Sussex, iron-mills, 33, 36-7.

  Shelve, Shropshire, lead mine of Roman period, 38.

  Shene Chapel, stone from Eastbourne for, 79.

  Sheppey Castle, guns for, 107.

  Shepton Mallet, pottery manufacture by Romans, 115.

  Sherterre family. See Shorter.

  Shippen, Yorks, coal-mining, 6.

  Shode, meaning of term, 64.

  Shoemaking: districts assigned to, in London, 217;
    gild of journeymen connected with craft, 235;
    regulation of trade, 180-3, 227;
    work allowed on Sunday, 213-14.

  Shoreham, brewing at, 187.

  Shorter or Sherterre family, glassmakers, 129.

  Shoyswell, hundred, brewing trade, 187.

  Shrewsbury: brewing regulations, 195;
    cloth trade, 152;
    leather trade, 172.

  Shropshire: coal workings, 5-6;
    lead-mining, 38-9.

  Silchester, refining of silver at, 54.

  Silver: process of refining from lead, 53-5;
    production from Devon mines, 56-7;
    weight and value, 55-6.

  Silversmiths' work, 94-5.

  Skipton, pottery kilns, 116.

  Slates, working of, 81-2.

  Sluys, export of coal to, 18.

  Small arms, early instance of use, 109.

  Smith, William, bell-founder, 100.

  Smithfield, tileries, 124.

  Snailbeach, Shropshire, lead mine of Roman period, 38.

  Solinus, third century, reference to Roman use of coal at Bath,
      probable, 1.

  Somerset: clothmaking industry, 161;
    coal-mining, 6-7;
    effect of the Statute of Labourers, 202;
    lead-mining, 40, 57, 58-9.

  Southampton, import of woad, 144.

  Southwark, gun-founding, 110.

  Spain, leather trade, 178-9.

  Speryng, Godfrey, beer brewer, 194.

  Spring of Lavenham, clothiers, 159.

  Spurriers, night work prohibited, 215.

  Staffordshire: coal-mining, 7;
    price of iron, 31.

  Stahlschmidt, Mr., on bell-founders, 96, 102.

  Staindrop, alabaster tomb at, 88.

  Stained glass: glazier brought from Flanders, in 1449, 130-1;
    process employed in England, 131-2.

  Stainton, Forest of Dean, coal-working, 5.

  Stainton-in-Furness, iron-works at end of Stone Age, 20.

  Stamford, clothmaking industry, 134, 136, 138.

  Stamfords, English cloth, 138.

  Stannaries, account of, 64-74.

  Stansfield, bell cast for, 97, 105-6.

  Stapleton, stone quarries, 77, 80, 83.

  Stephen of St. Iago, purchase of cannon from, 112.

  Stevenes, John, of Bristol, gun-founder, 110.

  Stithe or choke damp, 8.

  Stone-balls or shot for artillery, 80-1, 109.

  Stone masons, mutual assistance regulations, 237.

  Stone-quarrying, 76-83.

  Stow, in mining, meaning of term, 44.

  Stratton-on-Fosse, coal-mining, 6-7.

  Strelley, Nicholas, legal action respecting coal mine, 12-13.

  Stretton, near Alnwick, forge, 4.

  Strikes, labour, in Middle Ages, 235-6.

  Sudbury, clothmaking industry, 140.

  Suffolk, clothmaking industry, 157, 166-8.

  Sumptuary law of 1363, restrictions as to cloth, 169.

  Sunday, rules against working on, 212-14.

  Surrey: chalk-quarrying, 91;
    clothmaking industry, 167;
    glassmaking industry, 127-9;
    stone quarries, 77.

  Sussex: beer-brewing, 194;
    chalk-quarrying, 91;
    cider industry, 197-8;
    clothmaking industry, 167;
    glassmaking in, 128-9;
    gun-founding, 111, 113;
    iron industry, 24, 26, 28-9, 31, 36-7;
    stone quarries and slates from, 79-80, 82.

  Sutton, Robert, alabaster-worker, 88.

  Tadcaster, stone quarries, 77, 81, 83.

  Tailors, fraternity of yeomen tailors formed, 233-4;
    gild court, 236.

  Tanning of leather, processes employed, 171-7.

  Tan turves, term explained, 54, 173.

  Tarrant Keynston, nunnery, effigy of Queen of Scots in Purbeck marble,

  Tavistock, tin sent to, for coinage duty, 69.

  Tawing of leather, process employed, 171.

  Teazles, use of, in cloth making, 156.

  Temple Church, London, Purbeck marble effigies, 84.

  Thevesdale, stone quarries, 77.

  Thomas de Alemaigne, skill in mining, 59-60.

  Thomasson, Walter, gun-founder, 111.

  Thorp, Robert de, warden of the Devon mines, 47.

  Threle, William, cider made by, 1385, 198.

  Thrillesden (Trillesden), lease of coal mine, 15.

  Thrums, term explained, 152.

  Tideman de Lippe, purchase of English cloth, 139.

  Tiles: floor tiles, process of manufacture, 126-7;
    manufacture of, 119-27;
    price fixed, 119, 210;
    regulations for control of industry, 216, 222.

  Tilman de Cologne, farm of Alston lead mines, 60.

  Timber. See Wood.

  Tindale, Scottish king's liberty of, 41.

  Tin-mining: antiquity claimed for, 62-3;
    economic condition of smaller tin-workers, 69-70;
    free miner's privileges, 70-3;
    methods of working, 64-9;
    stamping dues, 68-9.

  Tithes to the Church, of cider and apples in Sussex, 198;
    lead-miners, payment of, 47-9.

  Toftes, coal mines, 16.

  Tolsester, term explained, 187.

  Torel, William, metal-work of, 95.

  Torksey, brewing-trade regulations, 188.

  Tower of London: gun-founding 110;
    regulations for wages of workmen employed in building operations, 214.

  Trademarks, use of, ordered, 216.

  Trades, segregation of, in towns, 217-18.

  Truro: nomination of members for stannary parliament, 72;
    tin sent to, for coinage duty, 69.

  Tudeley forge, Tonbridge: iron-works, 28;
    wages of workers, 33;
    weight of the bloom, 31.

  Tuning of bells, methods employed, 99-100.

  Tunnoc, Richard, bell-founder and memorial window, 103-4.

  Turn-hearth furnace, 53.

  Tutbury, alabaster dug at, in early times, 86.

  Twist, Gilbert, alabaster-worker, 89.

  Tynemouth, coal-mining, 6.

  Ulnager, official, 160.

  Upchurch, Roman British pottery, 114.

  Utynam, John, brought from Flanders to make glass, 130-1.

  Van Anne, Arnold, mining grant to, 60-1.

  Van Orel, Henry, mining grant to, 60-1.

  Van Riswyk, Dederic, mining grant to, 61.

  Vellacott, C. H., indebtedness to, acknowledged, ix.

  Venetian travellers: on English grapes, 199;
    report on rich metal-work in England, 94-5.

  Vesses or set cloths, manufacture of, 168.

  _Victoria County Histories_, source of information, viii-ix.

  Vines, cultivation in England, 198-9.

  Vipont, Robert de, trial of thieves in his manor court, 41-2.

  Vlenk, Matthew de, gunmaker, 111.

  Wages: coal-miners, 10-11, 16;
    iron-workers and miners, 32-5;
    lead-miners, 48-9, 53;
    legislation and gild regulations, 202, 210-12, 214, 228;
    saddlers' success in raising, 234, 235;
    shoemakers, 182;
    stone-quarriers, 82-3;
    tin-workers, 70.

  Wakefield, mineral rights, local customs, 11.

  Wales, coal export, in 1592, 18.

  Walker, Humphrey, gun-founder, 113.

  Walking, process in fulling cloth, 153.

  Walsingham, Prior, bells cast at Ely for, 103.

  Walter of Odyngton, a monk of Evesham, system for tuning bells, 99.

  Waltham, Purbeck marble for Eleanor cross, 85.

  Warde, William, dyer, trade dispute at Coventry, 146-7.

  Warwick Castle, foreign stained glass ordered for chapel, 131.

  Warwickshire, coal-mining, 6, 9.

  Water-power, use of, in iron-working, 27, 30;
    in lead mines, 52.

  Watts, Richard, poem on weaving processes, 142.

  Wax chandlers, regulation of charges, 209.

  Weald of Sussex and Kent: centre of ordnance manufacture, after 1543,
    iron industry, 24, 26, 28-9.

  Weardale: iron industry, 27, 31;
    lead mines, 39.

  Weaving industry: gild of alien weavers in London, 225;
    processes employed, 149-52;
    regulations for control of, 228, 235-7;
    religious character of ordinances of gilds, 207;
    restriction of output, 227;
    use of trademarks ordered, 216.

  Weights and Measures: ale standard measures, 188;
    barrel of beer and ale respectively, 195;
    chalder or chaldron, 17-18;
    cloth regulations, 136, 138, 150, 160-3;
    coal for, variety of, 14;
    lead for, variety of, 56.

  Weld, use of, for dying wool, 144, 147.

  Wellington, forest of, wood consumed by limekilns, 90.

  Westminster, regulations for wages of workmen employed in building, 214.

  Westminster Abbey: bell cast for, by Edward Fitz Odo, 102;
    inlaid tiles in chapter-house, 127;
    stone used for, 79.

  Westmoreland, Earl of, alabaster tomb at Staindrop, 88.

  Westmoreland, lead-mining, 60-1.

  Whickham, coal mine, 11, 16-17.

  Whitchurch, Dorset, bells cast for and dispute over, 100.

  Whitechurch, Hants, Roman iron-works, 21.

  Whittington, Richard, 229.

  Whyt, Thomas, lease of tilery, 125.

  Wight, Isle of: clothmaking industry, 167-8;
    question of identification with the Ictis of Diodorus Siculus, 62-3;
    stone quarries, 79.

  Willarby, George, report on lead mines, 60.

  William of Corfe, worker in Purbeck marble, 85.

  William, the founder, 102, 108.

  William of Malmesbury, on manufacture of wine in England, 198.

  William de Plessetis, property in Sea Coal Lane, 4.

  William de Wrotham, warden of the stannaries, 1198, 72.

  Willoughby, Sir John, legal action against Nicholas Strelley, 12-13.

  Wiltshire, limestone quarries, 78-9.

  Wimbish family, bell-founders, 102.

  Winchcombe, John, clothier of Newbury, 158, 167.

  Winchelsea: beer and cider imported, 193, 197;
    hops imported, 194.

  Winchester: clothmaking industry, 133, 136, 138, 150, 151, 158;
    iron sent to, from Forest of Dean, 23;
    stone for royal palace, 78-9.

  Wine, manufacture in England, 198-9.

  Wingerworth, accident at, in 1313, 7.

  Winlaton, coal mines, 11, 17.

  Wirksworth, lead mines, 39.

  Wisborough, cider industry, 198.

  Woad, use of, for dying wool, 144-8.

  Wodeward, William, gun-founder, 102, 108.

  Wolsingham, Durham, water-power used in lead mines, 52.

  Women: employment discouraged, 154, 228;
    exempted from certain trade restrictions, 218;
    iron-workers' wages, 32-3;
    lead mines employment, 51;
    spinning a staple employment, 148-9;
    stone quarrywork, payment for, 82-3.

  Wood, Thomas, builder of Goldsmiths' Row, 95.

  Wood: consumption by iron works, 36-7;
    lead-miners' privileges in Cumberland, 46.

  Woodstock, iron sent to, from Forest of Dean, 23.

  Wookey, smelting of ore at, 58.

  Wool, processes of dealing with, for clothmaking, 141-9.

  Worcester: brewing-trade regulations, 189;
    clothmaking industry, 134, 168;
    tile industry regulations, 120, 222.

  Worcester Cathedral, tomb of King John in marble, 84.

  Worsted, village, clothmaking industry, 139, 161.

  Worsteds, manufacture and frauds practised, 161-2, 164-5, 205.

  Worth, Sussex, wood burnt at iron-mills, 36-7.

  Wren, Christopher, use of Portland stone, 79.

  Wroxeter, discovery at, of Roman use of coal, 1.

  Wye, Kent: cider industry, 197;
    tile manufacture and processes employed, 121-3.

  Wylwringword, John de, gold found in Devon by, 61.

  Yarmouth: clothmaking industry, 165;
    herring fishery, struggle over monopoly, 203.

  York: alabaster industry, 89;
    bell-founding industry, 103.

  York Minster: bell-maker's window, 103-4;
    bells cast for, in 1371, 103;
    English glass bought for, 130;
    Plaster of Paris for, 89-90;
    stained glass for, from abroad, 131;
    stone for, 77.

  Yorkshire: Cistercian ware found in, 118;
    clothmaking industry, 147, 158, 167;
    coal-mining, 6.

  Zoetmann, Cornelius, grave at Playden, 194.

Printed by T. and A. CONSTABLE, Printers to His Majesty at the
Edinburgh University Press

       *       *       *       *       *


Minor punctuation and printer errors repaired.

Italic text is denoted by _underscores_

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