The Manuscripts of the Corporations of Southampton and Kings Lynn Eleventh Report, Appendix; Part III. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1887.
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II.—16 Richard II. to 1446 A.D. Book of the Gild of St. Giles and St. Julian: Small Folio of paper leaves, with four parchment leaves at the end of the book, setting forth the names of the brethren and sisters of the gild in the 4th year of Henry the Fourth.
As the Red Book of Bishop's Lenn was used as an Assembly Book from 19 Edward III. to 19 Richard II. it has a title to be rated with the Assembly or Congregation Books, and honoured as the oldest of them.
V.—14 Henry VII. to 37 Henry VIII. Book of the Gild of All Saints of South Lenne: the first leaf with this heading "Nomina Fratrum et Sororum Gilde sive Fraternitatis Omnium Sanctorum de Sougth Lenne fundate in anno Domini Mmo CCCC nonagesimo octavo et anno regni Regis Henrici Septimi quarto-decimo. Georgio Pyerpounte armigero tunc Aldermanno, et primo patrono ac fundatore et inceptore dicte Gilde sive Fraternitatis."
VI.—1867 A.D. Catalogue of the MSS. of the Corporation of Lynn, exhibiting on its title-page the heraldic shield of the borough, and this lettering, "1867. Repertory of the Records and Evidences of the Borough of King's Lynn.—Henry Harrod, F.S.A."
(1.) The Red Book of Bishop's Lenn: A Register of Wills and Book of Remembrances from 35 Edward I. to 2 Richard II.: and an Assembly or Congregation Book from 19 Edward III. to 19 Richard II. Containing in its present state one hundred and eighty-nine numbered leaves, that have been recently repaired and bound into a substantial Russia-leather cover, this massive and stately folio is lettered on the back of the cover "The Red Register of Lynn: Temp. Ed. II., Ed. III., and Ric. II." That this lettering fails in justice to the antiquity of one of the oldest paper-books, to be found in our municipal muniment rooms, appears from the dates of the oldest of the remaining entries, and from several indications, that what is now the opening leaf of the records was in former time preceded in the volume by numerous leaves, which had perished before the register was committed to a skilful restorer.
On the dorse of what is the fourth page of the folio, appears this worn and fragmentary record of Edward the First's 35th year, ". . . . . post festum Pasche anno regni Regis Edwardi filii Regis Henrici xxxv Simon filius Reginald' le Saus venit in aulam Gilde coram Thoma de Sethfoord (? Sechfoord) tunc Maiore . . . . . tulit . . . . ptum quiete clamancie et recognovit coram tota Communitate predictum scriptum . . . . . 'tum suum per quod quidem scriptum quiet-clamavit totum jus et clamium suum de uno messuagio in villa Lenne Ricardo de Warewyk' . . . . . Notum sit omnibus Christi fidelibus presens scriptum visuris vel audituris, Ego Simon filius Reginaldi Le Saus quon dam Burgensis Lenne concessi relaxavi et omnino . . . . me et heredibus meis vel meis assignatis quiet-clamavi imperpetuum Ricardo de Warwyk' burgensi Lenne et Johanne uxori ejus pro quadam pecunie summa quam michi dederunt . . . . . jus meum et clamium quod habeo seu habui vel habere potero in toto illo mesuagio cum . . . . . pertinenciis in villa Lenne Episcopi jacente in latitudine inter terram quondam . . . . . Le Spicer ex parte australi et terram quondam Johannis Piaor ex parte aquilonari, Et se extendit in longitudine a communi via de Briggegate versus orientem usque ad gutterem versus occidentem, Ita quod nec ego predictus Simon nec heredes mei nec aliquis . . . . seu pro nobis in predicto messuagio cum edificiis et pertinenciis aliquid juris vel clamii exigere . . . . poterimus in posterum, Et ego predictus Simon et heredes mei warentizabimus . . . . . messuagium cum edificiis et pertinenciis predictis Ricardo et Johanne et eorum heredibus assignatis ubicunque contra omnes gentes imperpetuum, In cujus rei testimonium huic scripto sigillum meum apposui. Hiis testibus Thoma de Sethford (? Sechford) tunc Maiore Lenne, Petro de Thornden, Johanne de Schanden, Willelmo Shillynges, Ricardo de Gerneston, Alan de Thornden, Willelmo . . . . ., Thoma de Beuseye, Thoma de Walsingham, Nicholas Bretoun, Johanne clerico et aliis. Datum Lenne die Mercurii proxima post festum Purificacionis Marie virginis anno regni Regis Edwardi filii Regis Henrici tricesimo-quinto."
Whilst the presence of this entry is of itself sufficient evidence that the book was used as a register of record something earlier than Edward the Second's accession, it is obvious that some of the fragmentary leaves at the opening and towards the close of the folio were at no distant date detached from the volume, to which they have been re-united by a dextrous craftsman. As to the precise year in which the Corporation first used the volume, which notwithstanding its magnitude may be styled the remnant of a bulkier book, no evidence is afforded either by volume itself or by the other records of the community. There is however no reason to think the book much older than the restorer thought it.
Belonging to the class of Registers, that used to be designated "Libri Remembrantiarum," this especially noteworthy folio was for some time used chiefly as a Register of Wills, affecting the transmission of real estate lying within the boundaries of the borough, and after becoming an Assembly or Congregation Book in Edward the Third's 19th year was still used as a will-register till the second year of Richard the Second, when the Mayor and Community probably began the series of testamentary enrolments on rolled membranes, of which the Wills' Roll 8–22 Richard II. (to be noticed in an ensuing section of this report) is the sole extant example. An interesting feature of the earlier testamentary records of the volume relates to the measures taken for giving due publicity to the testaments, and affording interested persons sufficient opportunity for questioning their validity. From the initial words of each of these records, it appears that no testament was approved by the Mayor, without previous proclamation by the Common Serjeant of the day, when the will would be brought before the Mayor in the Gildhall, and application made for its probate. Thus of John Ode's testament it is recorded (in Latin):—
"On Friday next following the Feast of St. Edmund the King in the first year of the reign Edward the son of King Edward, proclamation was made by the Common Serjeant of Lenn that, if anyone wished to contradict the testament of John Ode, so that the tenements bequeathed in the said testament ought not to be seized by the legatees, that it would be in the Gild Hall before the Mayor of the aforesaid town of Lenn on Wednesday next following; On which day Alice who was the wife of the aforesaid John Ode brought the testament of the same John before the same Mayor. In which testament the same John bequeathed to his son John his chief messuage in Wyngate with its appurtenances, which he acquired of Andrew Bataille, to have and hold after the decease of his mother Alice, so that he shall each year give to his brother James dwelling in the order of the Preachers ten shillings for a habit, and should it happen that the same John should die without an heir of his body lawfully begotten, he willed that the aforesaid messuage should revert to his brother Michael on the underwritten condition, Also he left to his son Michael his messuage with edifices and appurtenances near the Meirisflete which is called Duffecoteyerd, which he acquired from John Cullyng, to have and hold after the decease of his mother Alice; and should it happen that the same Michael should die without an heir of his body lawfully begotten, he willed that the same messuage should revert to his nearest heir after the death of the said Alice, Also he bequeathed to his daughter Margaret twenty shillings of yearly rent to be had of the messuage of John de Thornden in Dampgate after the death of the said Alice, Also he bequeathed to his daughter Muriel twenty-three shilllings of yearly rent, to be had of the messuage of Geoffrey Le Paumer in the street of Dampgate and three shillings of the messuage of John de Siswelle in West Lenn to be had after the death of the said Alice, Also he left to his daughter Etheldred twentythree shillings of yearly rent to be had of the tenement which is held by the heir of Walter de Swafham, and ten shillings of the tenement which is held by the heir of William de Colkirke in the parish of All Saints of Lenn, and ten shillings of the tenement which he acquired of John de Grymysby in the street which is called Heweryslane, to be had after the death of the said Alice, Also he left to his daughter Agnes twenty-eight shillings of yearly rent to be received of the tenement which Richard Murle holds, on the underwritten condition after her mother's death.
Also he willed that if it should please anyone of his daughters to enter into religion (si placuerit alicui filiarum suarum in religione intrare), it should be lawful for her to sell the tenement and rents bequeathed to her in this testament after her mother's death and in other way . . . . Also he bequeathed to his wife Alice four shops with their appurtenances over the cellar at the Greemarket (? gresmarket) for all her life, and that if the said Alice should have so great need, may which be absent, it should be lawful for her to sell the same shops for her sustenance and the sustenance of her boys, And if the aforesaid shops should not be sold, he willed that the [? money] coming from them throughout the term next following the death of the said Alice should be spent in pious uses for his soul and the soul of the same Alice, And if it should happen that any one of his daughters should die without an heir lawfully begotten of her, he willed that the bequest made to her in the same testament should be divided equally amongst her sisters. Also he bequeathed the vacant lands and tenements, one of which lies between the tenement of Thomas Deniel, which he acquired from Theobald Le . . . . and another tenement of Robert Lefgrene the clothier which he bought of Edward of Preston, and a third lying near the tenement of Richard de Gerneston which he bought of Michael Cullynges, to be sold for the payment of his debts, and the accomplishment of this testament. Which testament indeed on the aforesaid day was not contradicted. Wherefore the said Mayor diligently examined Stephen de Sherneburne and John de Hasele whether the aforesaid testament was made in the aforesaid form by the testator's desire, who being sworn gave the same testimony as is contained in the testament. And the same Mayor with the Alderman and Community pronounced for that testament as being lawfully proved. And they decreed seisin of the above-written tenements to aforenamed legatees and put the mayor's seal &c."
"Also on Wednesday next before the Feast of Pentecost in the aforesaid year it was proclaimed, that, if anyone wished to contradict the testament of William By-West-half-the-Water, it would be in the Hall of the Gild before the aforesaid Mayor on Friday following, At which day Thomas Pleyndamour brought the aforesaid testament before the aforesaid Mayor. In which testament the aforesaid William bequeathed all his messuage in Bishop's Lenn with the quay and other appurtenances, which he acquired from Roger Heynor, to be sold by his executors for fifty marks sterling, and thereof he bequeathed to Agnes his wife ten pounds of silver, Also he bequeathed his messuage in Gewyslane, which he acquired from Alexander de la Cornere, to be sold by his executors, and that the aforesaid Alexander should have thereof the forty shillings in which he was bound to him by a certain writing, Also he bequeathed to Elena the daughter of his sister for her marriage endowment his messuage By-West-half-the-Water, which he bought of William the Chaplain. Which testament indeed was not contradicted before the aforesaid Mayor. Wherefore the aforesaid Mayor diligently examined Nicholas Fluker and John Bathe upon their oath, whether the aforesaid testament was made by the testator's wish, who being sworn gave accordant evidence as the testament required. And therefore seisin of the aforebequeathed tenements was adjudged to the legatees aforesaid and the seal was apposed &c."
The late Mr. Harrod (vide Report on the Deeds and Records of the Borough of King's Lynn. By H. Harrod, Esq., F.S.A., 1874. Simpkin, Marshall, and Co.) made a slip in saying "it was difficult to guess how such a name [i.e., William By-West-half-the-Water's surname] came into existence;" it being obvious that the testator had in accordance with a common usage of his period taken for a surname the local designation of his chief messuage. The same painful and conscientious antiquary tripped in a more remarkable manner in saying "William By-West-half-the-Water had children who are mentioned in the Will, but to him or them I have met with no reference here or elsewhere." No such children are mentioned in the will; and as he bequeathed the messuage from which he took his surname to his sister's daughter, the fair assumption is that William By-West-half-the-Water was childless. In what he says of the records of the wills in the Red Register, Mr. Harrod was guilty of a more serious error, in remarking, "Each entry terminates with a record of the proof of the testament before the Ordinary," followed by a memorandum of the Mayor's approval; for in the earliest registrations no mention is made of probate before the Ordinary, though in respect to the subsequent registrations, it is recorded that the will had received episcopal probate before being submitted to the Mayor for approbation. The present report on the Lynn MSS. being in direct conflict with Mr. Harrod's report on other matters, the writer is under the disagreeable necessity of calling attention to the occasional inaccuracy of a published work, that notwithstanding its several slips is upon the whole not undeserving of the regard in which it is held by the archæologists of East Anglia.
From the memoranda touching John Ode's testament and William By-West-half-the-Water's testament it may be inferred that, in drawing such memoranda in the earlier years of Edward the Second, the keeper of the Red Register, thought it sufficient to give the mere purport and effect of the testator's language. But later in the same reign, it became the registrar's practice, in drawing an entry of testamentary record, to transcribe the ipsissima verba of those passages of the will, that affected messuages or tenements, or rents arising from messuages or tenements within the borough;—a practice followed at no great interval by the action of the Common Clerks, who thought it their duty to transcribe the enregistered wills in their entirety.
Throughout the earlier portion of what remains to us of the Red Register (viz. from p. 1 to p. 115) the entries touching wills are interspersed with transcripts of grants and agreements (municipal or private), memoranda of matters done in the Gild Hall Assemblies or the Hustings Court, and notes of affairs that were important to the people of Bishop's Lenn in the fourteenth century, such as—
(a.) Memorandum quod die Mercurii proxima ante festum Purificacionis beate Marie anno regni Regis Edwardi filii Regis Edwardi secundo, tempore Thome de Sethford (? Sechford) Maioris: Communa Lenne unanimo assensu consenserunt et licenciam dederunt Johanni de Walton ad faciendam quandam cameram communem cum necessariis pro aysiamento ville predicte imperpetuum duraturam in quadam venella communa inter terram que quondam fuit Deodati de Herdwykes ex utraque parte et apud orientalem . . . . super viam regalem juxta cimiterium ecclesie Sancte Margarete et apud occidentalem . . . . super magnam Rypam Lenne: Ita videlicet quod predictus Johannes nec aliquis alius in predicta camera nullam proprietatem poterunt clamare inperpetuum.
(b.) Memorandum that two cups of mazer, a silver wine-cup, and a vessel for holy water were taken from Ralph de Fuldone, for his arrear for talliages from the time of Thomas de Setheford (or Secheford) mayor, and that on Friday in the week of Pentecost in the 6th year of the reign of Edward the son of Edward Henry de Holt and Thomas de Bauseye came and bought the same "vadia" for forty shillings, which they paid immediately in the time of Lambert de St. Omer then mayor.
(c.) 8 Edward II. Memorandum that John de Grimesby came into the Gild Hall on Wednesday next after the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Mary Virgin . . . . and in the presence of the community acknowledged "se fregisse sequestrum maioris," and abused him in speech, and now offered to make amends for his said transgressions to the said community, Wherefore his peers and the said community adjudged the same John should for the said transgression pay half-a-mark, and be bound firmly for the payment of one hundred shillings to the same community as often as he should do any trespass to the Mayor, bailiff or community; and for this he found sureties, namely William Dimarkes, Roger de Flitham and William de Sculton.—Followed in the register by numerous similar sentences on burgesses and others guilty of offences against the Mayor and community, or the one or other of them.
(d.) 8 Edward II.—Memorandum that Adam le Clerk came into the Gild Hall on Friday next before the Feast of All Saints . . . . and made his plaint before the Mayor and the Community, that Henry de Rikelinghous, Hernald Clast, Hernald le Feuere, his brother Peter, William Gun berman, Henry de Brem, and Hernald Croppe of Grippeswald with other persons (unknown) craftily entered his vessel called the Plente by the sea-coast as enemies, and slew the men being in the same ship, and took and carried off the same ship, together with its goods; and that he proved this by Geoffrey Coket, Peter Wippe, John de Deneby, Gostelin de Snetesham, John Shorfrend, William de Snoryng, Robert le Shephirde, William Bullok, Walter de Fordham, William de Waynflet, Roger de Ingham and Alexander de Geyton.
(e.) 17 Edward II.—Memorandum that on Wednesday in the Feast of St. Thomas the Apostle . . . . Reginald the son of Martin de Thorp came into the Gild Hall and proved his age by Martin de Thorpe his father and Thomas the clerk, who being sworn said upon their oath that he exceeded twenty-one years of age, and produced the charter and writing of quit-claim &c.—Followed in other parts of the register by numerous memoranda of similar purport and effect.
(f.) 9 Edward III.—Memorandum that on Friday next following the Feast of All Saints . . . . . Stephen de Kent came into the Gild Hall and acknowledged himself guilty of trespass against the Mayor and the community, in selling wine for eightpence a gallon, when all taverns were selling it for sixpence a gallon; and that the community pardoned him the same trespass, on his engagement to give the community a tun of wine, should he ever offend again in like manner.
But of all the matters, preserved in the Red Register for the information of students and the guidance of writers of constitutional history, none are more interesting and valuable than the memoranda touching elections of Burgesses of Parliament from 48 Edward III. to 17 Richard II., in the records of the earlier of which years, the searcher of the folio comes upon a Latin memorandum to the following effect:—
9 October, 48 Edward III.—On the same day there were sworn the following, to elect two prudent and discreet men for the parliament of the Lord King, to be held at Westminster on the morrow of St. Edmund the King and Martyr,—John Wyth, Hugh de Ellyngham, Geoffrey Sharyngton, Edmund Berston, Richard Honton, John Penteney, Geoffrey Fransham, Walter Dunton, John Grantham, John Stalworth, John Loke and Nicholas Bukworth, who elected Robert Bathe and John Waryn.
This record of the election of Robert Bathe and John Waryn to be burgesses of parliament is followed by similar memoranda of the following elections, each of which was made by a committee of twelve persons.
(m.) 17 Richard II. At the congregation held on Wednesday of the Vigil of the Nativity of our Lord, 17 Richard II, There were elected for the parliament, to be held at Westminster on xv. Hillary, Thomas Drewe and Thomas Morton,—by John Keeper, Thomas Frankys, Ralph de Bedyngham, John Home, William Erl, Robert de Botkesham, Thomas Waterden, John de Botkesham, Richard Thorp, William Urry, Andrew de Sivanton and John Bolt.
This list is not given as a complete list of the elections of Burgesses of Parliament mentioned in the Red Book of Lynn, but merely as a list of those elections, that came under the observation of the present reporter, during a deliberate, but of course cursory, inspection of the one hundred and eighty-nine numbered leaves of the register. All these fourteen elections were made by successive committees, consisting of twelve persons selected and appointed to make choice of fit and proper persons, to represent the Community of Bishop's Lenn at the national parliament. Each record gives the names of the twelve members of the electing committee; but, during his inspection of the Red Register, the present reporter came upon no memorandum touching the way and manner of choosing the several members of any one of the electing committees.
(II.) 2–9 Henry VI.—Assembly (or Congregation) Book, No. I.: erroneously lettered at the back and on one of the boards of its modern cover "1st Hen. 6th, 1422 to 29th Hen. 6th, 1450." No fair register of proceedings of Assemblies during the years indicated by the labels on the cover, or the years indicated at the head of the present entry, but a collection of more or less imperfect Year Books of proceedings at municipal congregations, stitched together with insufficient care for the chronological sequence of the sometimes fragmentary leaves, the present 4to book affords a fairly complete view of the business done at the Gild Hall Congregations during seven successive years (2–9) of Henry the Sixth; and also of proceedings at Assemblies, held on or between 7 April and 24 July, 29 Henry VI. Containing the following memoranda:—
(a.) 13 October, 2 Henry VI.—At the same time allowance of forty shillings is made to the Burgesses of Parliament, for arrears of expenses of the same burgesses.—Followed in later leaves of the book by numerous memoranda touching the payment of parliamentary burgesses.
And the Mayor chose for the election of burgesses of parliament Richard Waterden, Nicholas Aldirman, William Style and Thomas Langton, who retired together into the chamber, who chose (vocaverunt) Andrew Swartton, William Kyrton, Ralph Bedyngham, John Springwell, T. Wursted, John Systerne, John Biekieres and John Andrew, who appeared together and received their charge by the fealty which they made to the community (et receperunt onus suum per fidem quam fecerunt communitati ut, &c.), that they would elect two sufficient burgesses to attend the parliament, according to the tenor of the said brief, who elected John Copnote and Thomas Burgh.
(c.) 25 June, 3 Henry VI.—And there the Mayor exhibited a letter sent by the burgesses of parliament, in which they desire to have a letter of attorney, under the common seal in the name of the whole community, in accordance with a draft transmitted together with the letter, for receiving in the name of the community cccxxxiiili. vis. viiid., supplied to King Henry the Fourth in his 4th year, by virtue of certain tallies delivered to the same burgesses; and in accordance with the said draft wrote in form a letter, which was there read and sealed to John Copnote, to receive from Thomas Bishop of Durham, Sir John Pelham knt., and John Leventhorp esq., executors appointed in the will of Henry late King of England after the conquest the Fourth, cccxxxiiili. vis. viiid., owed by the said King for money lately lent by us the Community for the same King's use, as appears by a certain tally delivered to the community, and levied on Roger Galyon and Thomas Grey then collectors of customs and subsidies in the port of the Town of Lenn aforesaid at the Receipt of the Exchequer in the 4th year of the said King; of which letter a copy remains with the Common Clerk in these words:—"Know all men by these presents, That we John Parmonter mayor of Lenn in the county of Norfolk, and the whole community of the same town, have attorned and put in our place our beloved John Copnote, our true attorney to ask for and receive, in our name and for us, of the Venerable Father in Christ Thomas Bishop of Durham, Sir John Pelham knt., and John Leventhorp esq., the executors named in the testament of the Lord Henry late King of England after the conquest the Fourth, three hundred and thirty and three pounds six shillings and eight pence, owed to us by the aforesaid late King for money lent by us for the said King's use, as appears more clearly by a certain tally delivered to us and levied at the Receipt of the Exchequer on Roger Galeon and Thomas Grey, then collectors of customs and subsidies in the aforesaid port of Lenn, on the ninth day of December in the 4th year of the said late King, &c., &c. Dated at Lenn in our Gild Hall on 25 June 3 Henry VI."
(d.) 14 July, 3 Henry VI. Privy Seal Writ of Henry dei gracia Rex, &c. whereby, in consideration of a certain sum of one thousand marks lent for the King's use by the Mayor, sheriff and community of Norwich, the Mayor and community of Lenn, Master William Westacre, Master William Walton and Master Nicholas Somerset, all of Norfolk (five hundred marks thereof having been lent by those of Norwich, four hundred marks by those of Lenn, forty pounds by William Westacre, twenty pounds by William Walton and ten marks by Nicholas Somerset) on the security of a certain great garnished circlet of gold (unum magnum circulum aureum garnisatum), as appears more fully in certain indentures made between the Archbishop of Canterbury, John Wakering the Keeper of the King's privy seal, the aforesaid mayors, sheriff and communities, William Westacre, William Walton and Nicholas Somerset, the King grants that, in case the said circlet be not redeemed by him, his heirs or executors, within one year, half-a-year and a month, from the day on which it was received in pawn by aforesaid lenders, it shall be lawful for the same lenders to sell the same security for repayment of the moneys so lent by them; it being, however, provided that, should the circlet be sold in accordance with the terms of the concession, account is to be rendered by the vendors to the king, his heirs, executors or assigns, of the surplus of the sum for which it shall be sold over the sum of the money lent as aforesaid. Dated at Westminster.
(e.) 27 September, 3 Henry VI. And afterwards the Mayor sought what should be done with the male prisoner, who had maliciously allowed the salt water to enter the common ditch: and it was agreed that the culprit should be put on the pillory, and afterwards should be required to abjure the town.
(f.) 30 January, 4 Henry VI. And there was read in mother-tongue the King's writ for an election of burgesses of parliament . . . . . and there the Mayor chose for making the election William Style, John Rieking (?), John Saluz, Nicholas Franks, who entered the chamber together with Andrew Swanton, William Waterden, John Systerne, and Nicholas Aldirman, William Space, Thomas Botekysham, John Muryell and John Springwell; who appeared together and accepted their charge (per fidem quam fecerunt communitati), that they would elect two sufficient burgesses to attend the parliament, in accordance with the tenor of the said writ. Who with unanimous assent elected Bartholomew Petypas and John Parmonter for burgesses of parliament, in that year.
(f.) 13 February, 4 Henry VI. And it was asked if they would consent, that a letter of attorney should be made under the Common Seal, to be had by divers persons, for making suit with the authority of the whole community to the King's Council, and all persons at the congregation being for the restraint of navigation to Island, so that henceforth it should not be used, they one and all granted that they would for ever hold firm and reasonable whatever should be appointed on this matter; and also with the assent of the whole congregation they ordained, that [all persons] frequenting Island should be summoned to come to the Gildhall before the Mayor and Community, and be there forbidden to navigate to Island, under pain of forfeiture of goods and deprivation of liberty.
(h.) The Day of the Decollation of John the Baptist, 4 Henry VI. . . and afterwards, an interval having been made, . . . . . the Common Clerk charged John Wesynham, the Alderman of the Gild of the Holy Trinity, upon his oath, that he would name and call four fit, discreet, and not suspected persons for the election of a mayor . . . . . And afterwards the Alderman took his oath in due form, and named John Wyth, Thomas Spicer, John Syff, John Saluz, who took oath and entered the chamber. And afterwards they called to themselves Thomas Gryme, Thomas Wilkynson, William . . . ., and . . . . Body; who in the same manner swore and entered the Chamber; which . . . persons called together to themselves Thomas Langton, John Assh . . . . . . . Muryell and John Perche; which twelve persons entered together. And the first four being sworn by themselves on their oath to elect a mayor, chamberlain, and other officers; and in the same manner, the second four took oath; and the third four accepted their charge together, and together entered the Chamber; and there waiting from the tenth hour to the third hour, in which time a division arose amongst the twelve sworn persons, upon the election of the sergeant-at-mace in this that he was accused "quod non fuit amicabilis proficuo communitatis, &c." And on this William Collys and . . . . Warde bore witness that the accusation was true; whereupon a great murmur now rose amongst the people. At length the same man, Robert Beer, repenting of his offence, asked pardon of the Mayor and community, and promised to stand to their order in this matter, and thus there was . . . . to the said election. And after his election he entered. Who elected . . . . Philip Franks; for chamberlains, . . . Palmer, John . . . ., John . . . William Style; for clerk, Thomas Cheuele; for serjeant-at-mace, Robert Beer; for keeper of the East Gate . . . . ; for keeper of the South Gates Nicholas Borewell; for keeper of the Gates of Douzhill Yard, Thomas Groute; and for bellman, John Mordon.
The decay and defacement of the leaf render it impossible to give a perfect translation of this noteworthy record; but enough of the memorandum remains to show how the elections of officers were made in this year.
(i.) 17 November, 6 Henry VI. And first there was read a letter sent by the burgesses of parliament, which made mention that the Friars Preachers contrived a certain malicious bill, complaining to the King about the community in respect to divers transgressions.
And there it was asked if they would agree that in the name of the four hundred marks they (viz., the burgesses of parliament) should receive of the executors of the late king one hundred pounds for the pledged circlet of gold, because they were not able to get more (quia plus recipere non possint); and the whole congregation granted that the same burgesses of Parliament should receive the one hundred pounds.
(j.) 16 April, 6 Henry VI. And afterwards it was enquired by Philip Frank, if the community wished to consent that the hundred pounds (super circulum aureum apprestite) in the hands of John Wood (sic) should be received to the use of the community.
(k.) 17 March, 7 Henry VI. And there appeared the nominated lepers John Selander, T. Taylour, and Edmund Mundy, that their infirmity might be proved by discreet persons having knowledge in this respect (Et ibidem comparuerunt Joh. Selander, T. Taylour et Edm. Mundy leprosi nominati, ut probetur eorum infirmitas per discretas personas noticiam in hac parte habentes).
(l.) 2 September, 8 Henry VI. —And there was declared in mother tongue the writ for electing burgesses of parliament . . . . . And after the declaration of the writ, the Mayor chose (vocavit) for the election Andrew Swanton, Richard Lecchour, John Muriell and William Wyth, William Style, William Herson, William Coll, John Kelle, T. Wursted, John Wych, T. Langton and John Syff; Who elected John Parmonter and John Watirden.
(m.) Also, on one of the several misplaced leaves of the present collection, this memorandum headed "Forma Donacionis Panis Benedicti." At the aforesaid Congregacion, held on 6th October, 6 Henry VI., they determined that each and all tenements, which are leased to farm for xx s. per annum and more and are inhabited, although they shall be divided by the king's way, shall give "panem benedictum cum candela cerea," unless it happen that the chief tenement has different tenements annexed under one roof, pertaining to and not separate from the said Chief Tenement, in which case the principal tenement shall give "panem benedictum" for all the tenements pertaining to it, if they shall be inhabited; otherwise the tenements annexed to the value of twenty shillings amongst themselves, so that each of them be at least of the yearly rent of 6s. 8d., shall give "panem benedictum" amongst themselves according to the rate of their farm: And if there be three tenements lying together, "unumquodque eorum ad firmam vi s. viii d. per ann. eciam si unus eorum sit valor' xiii s. iiii d. per annum, alter vero vi s. viii d.," they shall give "panem benedictum" according to rate of rent. And if the inhabitants in the same tenements shall refuse to give "panem benedictum cum candela cerea" in accordance with the aforesaid form, the common serjeant-at-mace or other officer at the mandate of the Mayor or his lieutenant for the time being shall enter into the said tenement or into the tenements of the person or persons refusing to give bread, and levy distress by all their goods and chattels there found, and shall bring the things so taken in distress to the Gildhall, there to remain until the person or persons thus refusing to give bread shall make satisfaction or pay for his offence committed twenty shillings sterling to the use of the community, and to no other uses to be converted, unless extreme poverty or other reasonable excuse should come to their aid.
Though it passed long since from the hands of the corporation, and still reposes in Sir William Ffolkes's library at Hillington Hall near Lynn, I do not hesitate to deal with this folio as one of the records in the possession of the borough, because I have the best grounds for thinking that at no distant future—possibly even before the publication of this report—it will be restored to the collection of muniments to which it appertains in every sense but the strictly legal sense.
Affording evidence that in Henry the Sixth's time the electorates of the nine constabularies, endowed with the power of electing three members of each constabulary to serve in the "Common Council of Twenty Seven," seldom numbered more than twenty individuals and sometimes consisted of so few as twelve voters actually taking part in the elections, the present volume contains, with a large body of other more or less noteworthy entries, the following matters of record.
(a.) 12 October, 9 Henry VI.—And the Congregation also granted that the three players (histriones) shall serve the community this year for twenty-one shillings and their clothing, to be had of every house.
(b.) 20 December, 9 Henry VI.—And there choice was made by the Mayor of Richard Lecchour, William Style, John Muriell and John Syffe, for the election of a burgess of parliament: and those four called Andrew Swatton, William Coll, William Palmer, John Spugwell, John Masey, Hugh Crosse, John Bury, William Norfolk, who elected John Parmonter and T. Salibury.
" " And there was sealed a letter, sent to the Prior of Norwich, the tenor of which follows in these words,—Fulwurshipful and reverent Fader in God We your gostly children the Maior alderman burgeyses and all the Comons of Lynne humbly recomaund us to your good fadirhod, Besechyng that it like to your benigne grace be the avys of the richt discret and religious personys your wurthi birthern of þe covent of Norwiche at þe reverence of God in encresyng of his lovyng and devocioun of þe pepil, and for þe gret quiete and ese of your parisshens of þe same toun to graunte þat þe sacrament of Bapteme and þe sacirimentall of Purificacioun maybe ministrid to your parisshens aforesaid in your Chapell of Seynt Nicolis in þe said toun þe richt of your minister þe Cathedrall churche of Norwiche and of Saynt Margarete þe parissh churche of Lynne in all þinges alwey &c. . . . whiche goode and holy vew shal cause you gret merite for þe . . . þat we trist to God shal growe þerof. In Witness herof to þis present lettir patent We have do sett our comone seel. Yeven in our Gilde Halle þe xiiii day of January in þe x yeer of þe reigne of King Henry þe Sext.
(d.) 4 August, 10 Henry VI.—And there John Bampton clearly declared those things which he did with the Chancellor of the Lord King: And there was exhibited the Lord King's brief directed to the Mayor of the town of Lenn, which was read by the common clerk, being put in the mother tongue and afterwards there was exhibited and directed a close letter directed to the Mayor by the Chancellor.
(e.) 3 November, 11 Henry VI.—It was ordered that the community shall give to the Lord Bishop one pipe of red wine and one vessel of Rhine-wine, and certain of the portions of oats to ten quarters, and twelve pikys, and twelve tenches and one parcel (ferndell) of sturgeon.
" " And there was exhibited a bill on behalf of the players (histrionum), to the effect that they desired an increase of their reward: And it was granted that each of those two should have for his fee twenty shillings and his clothing for that year, which grant shall last for that year to each; And they shall go through the town with their instruments, from the feast of All Saints to the following feast of Purification.
(f.) 17 June, 11 Henry VI.—And there in the first place was read a brief of the Lord King for the election of burgesses of parliament. And for the election of them the Mayor chose two of the Twenty-four, and two of the Common Council, viz. William Waterden, Richard Lecchour, John Springwell, and Nicolas Frank; and those four chose two of the Twenty-four and two of the Common Council, viz. William Herford, Andrew Swarton, John Syff, John Adams, and they (i.e. the eight) elected William Kirton, William Style, William Raulyn and Robert Walsyngham; Who (viz. the twelve) with unanimous assent elected John Watirden and Thomas Spicer to be burgesses of parliament.
(g.) Friday next after the Feast of the Purification, 12 Henry VI.— And there it was moved by the Mayor how the Lord our King intended to come to that town in the second week of Lent next coming, and how order should be taken against his arrival, whereupon it was asked what should be done in that respect. And it was agreed that order should be taken for a hundred pounds, and that those, who had been chosen to assess 30l., should in like manner assess 100l., the 30l. being omitted.
(h.) 4 April, 13 Henry VI.—In þe same day of þis congregacioun be þe full avyse and assent of þe xxiiii. and þe comon counseill and of all þe burgeses and merchaunts of Lenn it is playnly ordeyned graunted and appoynted þt for þe profile and welefare of þis town þis Maire Thomas Burgh shalle go in þe Kynges oure sovereyn lordes Ambassiat to Bruges in Flandres like as he is assigned be þe Kynges Comission and commaunded be a pryvie seall, And þat he for þe Wurchipp of þis town in alle þynges shall wele and honestely gone in þourneye accordyng to his office and degree as hym semeth beste, Also Walter Curson and John Bampton of Lenn clerk of þe mairalte and þe commonalte of þe same town ben chosen Proctours to gone for þis town to Bruges in Flandres aforesaid, þere to declare before oure said soverayn Lordes Ambassiatours and þambassiatours of þe Maister of Pruce and of þe Duche Hanse the grevaunces dammages and wronges and other harmes be þe same Maiester and his Sogettes and be þem off þe Hanse, done to men of þis town of Lenn and to aske restitucioun and reformacioun &c. of þe said harmes &c. as it is specified in þe proonvacie (?) under þe comon seall of þis toun made to þe said proctours, Also it is fully graunted þat þe costes and expenses of þe forsaid mater and proctours made in þis journeye and also þeyre rewaard shalbe bourne gaderd and paid be þe said merchauntes and burges of þe merchaundysez þat ben aventured to Pruce Scove to Norweye and Sweche.
(i.) 26 January, 19 Henry VI.—On the said day was read and entertained a certain letter, sent by the Duke of Norfolk to the Mayor alderman and community of this town, touching the eight persons to be sent to the Lord Duke to Norwich, to confer with him there respecting certain matters touching the Lord the King and this town, when there were named by the whole congregation the following eight persons to ride to Norwich on the said business, viz.—John Waryn, Henry Thorisby, John Pygot, John Syf, Simon Draper, John Nicholasson, Robert Hunt and William Kelloc:—and Thomas Tolyot, chamberlain, is chosen to ride with the same eight persons, and to pay for their expenses in this matter out of the goods of the community.
(j.) 10 January, 20 Henry VI.—On that day by authority of the Lord the King's brief, directed by the Sheriff of Norfolk to the Mayor, there were elected burgesses of this town to be present at the parliament, to be held at Westminster on the day of Paul's conversion next to come.
In the first place, the Mayor, according to custom, chose for making the aforesaid election William Kyrketon, Bartholomew Colles, John Colchester, William Wareleys, who chose John Saluz, John Seyle, Hugh Crosse, Ralph Bircham, who chose John Syf, William Kellowe, Robert Sad, Th. Calbot, which twelve elected Richard Frank and Walter Curson to be burgesses of the said parliament.
On the said day, it was agreed by the assent of the whole congregation, that [the] burgesses hereafter to be chosen in this town for parliaments shall receive for their wages (viz., each of them) two shillings a day and no more in any manner: and also it was agreed that the Mayor for the time being, at the pleasure of his will, shall name, for the election of burgesses of parliament, any four persons, it shall please him to name, that is to say two of the number twenty-four and two [of] the common council being present at the congregations, whenever Burgesses of this kind shall in future be elected for parliaments. The marginal note touching this memorandum being in these words,—"Ordinacio pro vadiis burgensium parliament' hujus ville que quidem vadia extendunt se per diem ad quatuor solidos et non amplius."
The Latin of these remarkable memoranda runs thus:—"In primis Maior ut est moris vocavit pro eleccione premissa facienda Will' Kyrketon, Barth' Colles, Joh' Colchester, Will' Wareleys, qui vocaverunt Johannem Saluz, Joh' Style, Hug' Crosse, Rad' Bircham, qui vocaverunt Joh' Syf, Will' Kellowe, Rob' Sad, Th. Calbot, qui duodecim elegerunt in Burgeuses dicti parliament. Ricm' Frank, Walt' Curson.
"Dicto die concordatum fuit per assensum tocius congregacionis quod burgenses in hac villa pro parliamentis imposterum eligendi percipient pro eorum vadiis quolibet die, videlicet uterque eorum, duos solidos et non amplius ullo modo, et eciam concordatum fuit quod Maior qui pro tempore fuerit ad sue libitum voluntatis nominabit pro eleccione burgensium parliamenti quatuor personas, scilicet duas de numero xxiiiio, et duas de communi consilio, interessentes ad congregaciones quando hujusmodi burgenses in futuro pro parliamentis eligentur."
(k.) Die Jovis, next following the Feast of St. Scolastica the Virgin, 23 Henry VI.—On that day by authority of the Lord the King's brief, directed by the sheriff to the bailiff of the liberty of Lenn, there were chosen burgesses of this town, to attend the parliament to be held at Westminster on the 25th day next to come. In the first place the Mayor, according to custom chose, for making the aforesaid election, John Robynson, John Colchester, William Costyn, John Smyth, who chose John Saluz, John Pygot, William Costyn, John Smyth, who chose William Kellowe, Simon Pygot, William Hardy, John Dody, which twelve burgesses chose for burgesses of the said parliament Thomas Burgh and Henry Thorisby.
(l.) 5 August, 24 Henry VI.—On the same day it was ordered that the Mayor's sword should be borne before him with the point upward (puncto erecto) according to the grant made by the Lord King, when he was last in the town, to the Mayor.
(m.) Monday 5 December, 25 Henry VI.—On the same day was read what was shown to the Mayor and community by Thomas Salisbury late Mayor of this Town, that the Lord our King at his last coming to the town of his special grace granted to the Mayor and community of the said town, that henceforth the Mayor's sword should be borne before him with point erect, as appeared more fully at the congregation held on the 5th day of August last past; and that upon this the said Lord the King with the said Mayor sent a certain letter written on parchment and sealed with the King's signet, directed to the Bishop of Chichester, keeper of the Privy Seal, and in his absence to his deputy, for the carriage of the Mayor's said sword; and that afterwards the same Lord the King by his Privy Seal strictly commanded, that the Mayor's sword should not be borne before in any way, other than the way in which it was borne before the King's said last coming to the town; the tenor of the said Privy Seal being in these words:— By the Kyng, Trusty and welbeloved We be enfourmed by the Worshipyfull Fadir in god the bisshop of Norwich Lord of the burgh and towne of Lynne that undre colour of youre suete late made unto us at our beyng there, to have a swerd and a mace to be boren byfore the Meire of the said burgh for þe tyme being, Ye the Meyre of the said borough have a swerd and a mace boren before you, otherwise than was done byfore oure beyng theyre, notwithstandyng ye have no lettres patentes of our graunt so for to do the which is ayenst the fourme of oure lawe, and prejudicial to the said Worshipful Fadre in God, and to the Chirche of Norwich as [we] be enfourmed, And how be it that We were wele enclyned to your desire in this behalf, yit it was not, nother is not, oure entent, to prejudice any partie, and namely the Chirche for by oure oth made at oure coronacioun We be bounde to supporte and maynteyne the Chirche and the ryght thereof, And therefore We wol and charge you Meire straitely that all execusacions left ye ceese from hens forwarde to have any swerde or mace, to be bore before you, otherwyse than was used before oure beyng there, And We charge you straitely the Commoinalte of þe said borough that ye suffre not, the Meire that now is, and that for the time shalbe, to have any swerd, or mace to be boren before him in the said borough, otherwise than was used also before our last being there. Yeven under oure Prive Seal at Westminster the viii. day of November.
Which lettter of the Privy Seal having been thus read, it was ordained by the whole Congregation, that the Mayor's sword should henceforth be borne only in the manner and way in which it was borne before the said King's coming to this town.
(n.) 16 July, 27 Henry VI.—Ordinance by the Mayor and council, made for the good government of the Craft of taillours of the town of Bishop's Lenn, whereby it was appointed that yearly all tailors, plying their craft in the said town should appear before the Mayor in the Guildhall within the two months following St. Michael's Feast, and in his presence choose two of their number to act as Hedesmen of their craft, during the ensuing twelve months, who on their election should take the following oath:—Sires ye shul wele duly and trewely make serche of your crafte of all dwellers with in the town att this time and that from this tyme forward no newe come persones sette uppe the saide crafte with oute he be sufficiaunt in connyng, Whos sufficiaunce and connyng shal be determyned be þe advyse of the meyre and the seid hedesmen. And every persone so newe come and amitted and wilbe no burgeys for his newe settyng uppe shal paye to the Meyre xl d., to the comons of Lenn xl d., and to the said hedesmen xl d., Which xl d. shal go to the sustentacioun of the procession upon Corpus Christi day, And yf he wil be burgeys than he to pay but xl d. for his no newe settyng uppe to þe seid hedesmen for every sower be the weke denysen qa for every sower be the quarter denysen ii d., and for every sower of alyaunt duble to þe sower of deynsens upon the peyne the seid dwellers paye duble hem selffe, And also what persone of the seide crafte kepe any prentys with in the toun from this tyme forward and be no burgeys shal paye to þe sustentacioun of the seid procession on Corpus Christi day xl d., And the Meyre to sette a rewele therein according to þe statute in the Hall of olde tyme, And yf any persone compleyne of any man of the seid crafte þt he hath hurte be mysse cuttyng or mysse shapyng or any parte of his clothe taken otherwyse than in trewe forme upon which any persone or persones so convicted be leful and due preves þat þan he or they so convycted to make amendes to þe party or partyes so-greved be the sight of the Meyre and the seid hedesmen, And yf any persone of the said crafte slaundre any man of such dedis so doon and may not evydently be preved be due and leeful preves they to be punysshed be þe avyse of the Meyre and the seid hedesmen and to forfete as often as he is founden so fauty xl d., Which shall go to þe seid procession upon Corpus Christi day, And yf any other other persone than of the said crafte compleyn or slaundre any man of dedis so doon, and may not be duly preved, thei to be punnysshed be advyse of the Meyre and his counsell, And yf ther be any controverseis and debates among any of the seid crafte shaper or sower noon of them to sewe other in no manere wyse but to come to þe ii hedesmen and to compleyne to hem yf nede be and thei to do ther parte to drawe hem to accorde and yf thei may not þat þan thei to make relacioun to Meyre every man doying the contrary shal þe payne accordyng to þe statute in the halle and yf any of the seid ii hedesmen wil be parciall or rewle þe mater otherwise than conciens that than he þat so feleth him agreved come and compleyne to the Meyre and yf any þe seid hedesmen be slawe and wil not do as it is afornseid so that they departe without remedy so that who of hem sewe other throwe here defaute that iche of þe seid hedesmen so preved gilty to forfete þe peyne þat longeth to the halle &c. Followed by the names of the thirty-eight tailors of Lenn affected by the statute.
(IV.) 31 Henry VI. to 11 Henry VII.—Assembly (or Congregation) Book, No. III. Folio of 317 leaves, with pamphlet index to contents at the opening of the volume, containing with other matters the following memoranda.
(a.) 31 March, 31 Henry VI.—On that day they elected burgesses of parliament. The Mayor, in accordance with custom, chose (vocavit) Richard Cosyn, Hugh Crosse, William Gilbert, J. Petyclerk, Robert Hunt, Robert Lexham, William Assill, Martin Wrighte, John Cave, William Alkas, J. Melcheburn, William Philpot, who being sworn, &c. elected for burgesses of parliament Henry Bermyngham and William Pilton. On this occasion the Mayor seems to have named all the electors, taking them from "the Twenty-four" and "the Twenty-seven."
(b.) 3 July, 33 Henry VI.—On that day they elected burgesses. The Mayor, in accordance with custom, for electing burgesses of parliament, &c. as is aforesaid, &c., Robert Hunte, William Pilton, William Toot, Thomas Leighton, and they chose William Wareles, William Assill, Hugh Crosse, John Melcheburn, Thomas Thornham, John Boys, John Trunche, William Lynne, Who being sworn, &c. chose for burgesses of parliament Henry Thorisby and Walter Cony. In this case the Mayor named four persons, who chose the other eight members of the electing Committee, which consisted wholly of persons who were either Jurats or of "the Twenty-seven."
(c.) 16 July, 33 Henry VI.—On the same day William Pilton was elected into the number of "the Twenty-four," and he took time till the next Assembly to bring x li. into Hall or otherwise to accept the burden.
(d.) 30 January, 36 Henry VI.—Also on the same day the matter, touching the tenement in which Elias Bulwere the butcher, is put in the arbitrament of John Pygott, Walter Cony, Thomas Tuliott, Thomas Thorneham arbitrators chosen by the aforesaid Elias, and of Henry Bermyngham, William Cauce (?), Robert Lexham and William Ivott, arbitrators elected by the community; to make their arbitrament this side the Lord's Day in . . . Easter, next coming.
(e.) 9 January, 38 Henry VIII.—Memorandum, that Symon Pygott and William Pilton, late burgesses of parliament, rode towards Coventre on Wednesday next before the Feast of St. Edmund the King last past and returned to Lenn on the vigil of the Lord's Nativity, and thus protracted their stay (moram) in going thither, waiting there and returning to forty-one days, whence the sum at the rate of four shillings a day extends itself to viii. li. iiij. s. of which they received beforehand one hundred shillings. And thus there are owed to the same Simon and William sixty-four shillings. And on that day the said Symon and William declared the acts of parliament.
(f.) 10 December, 39 Henry VI.—Memorandum that on that day Henry Bermyngham and William Pilton, burgesses of parliament, declared the acts of the parliament &c.; and the same burgesses rode towards London on Friday the third day of October and returned to Lenn on the second day of December then next following, and thus they were at parliament, with going and returning, throughout sixty days, and the parliament is prorogued to the twenty-eighth day of January next to come.
(g.) 12 February, 39 Henry VI.—On the same day it was ordained that all those persons, who have been appointed captains in the several constabularies of this town, shall provide and each of them shall provide for the defence of the ward assigned to him, and that each constabulary may be sufficiently defended this side the Lord's day next coming, under a penalty of forty shillings for each captain being wanting: And that every person of each constabulary, who shall have been summoned by any captain for the defence of his ward, and shall refuse to obey, shall forfeit to the community of the town three shillings and fourpence every time he shall be disobedient. Also on the same day it was ordained that two constables shall watch every night for a certain time. (N.B.— Similar orders for putting the town in a state of defence, by perfecting the military organisation of the constabularies, appear in the present book.)
And on the same day John Burbage delivered here upon the "screnium alias scrinium" a little box with the charters of the tene ment late of John Curson in Baxterrowe, another little box with the charters of the tenements late of John Flete in Briggegate, and another little box with the charters of the tenement, late of John Massingham in Dampgate, and a book late of John Assheburne; which little boxes and book remain in the "screnium."
(h.) 30 December, 1 Edward IV.—On the same day Symon Pygot and Henry Bermyngeham declared the acts of the parliament last past, namely certain acts in writing and certain by word of mouth &c. Which Symon and Henry rode towards London to the Parliament on Friday next before the Feast of All Saints last past, and returned home to Lenn "die Jovis in vigilia Natal' domini." And thus they attended at Parliament, with the going and returning, for fifty-six days.
(i.) 11 February, 2 Edward IV. On the same day it was agreed that, for the xxxviii li. xiiii s. iiii d. which divers Burgesses have provided for the use of the community, and for the vi li. owed to John Martyn and his associates for the wages of subordinate persons, a certain tax shall be assessed to the sum of xxxvi li., for assessing which tax there were elected—
(N.B.—Noteworthy for its evidence that the inferior burgesses, who were neither members of "the Twenty-four," nor members of the Common Council ["the Twenty-seven"] had at this time a voice in the assessment of taxes, this entry is also interesting for its evidence that the word "Communitas" had already lost its original meaning and was used to designate the humblest and least influential class of burgesses.)
(j.) 6 September, 5 Edward IV.—On the same day William Caus and Robert Thoresby declared the acts of the parliament. And the same burgesses tarried at the parliament through one hundred and twenty-three days.
(k.) 30 October, 5 Edward IV.—This day it is ordeyned by all the Congregacion abovesaide that no man within the Towne of Lenne dwellyng fro hens furthward shall kepe nor favour nor mayteyne eny common Tapster with in his house as servaunt or tenaunt, whiche is knowen for a misgoverned woman, upon peyne of xl s. als often as ony persone is so founden defectif: Provided alway, that if ony man have ony woman to his tenaunt, that kepith a tappestre and is a mysgoverned woman her landelord unwityng, that hir landelord be noght in the case of this ordenaunce but if he supporte or maynteyne his saide tenaunt after moniciouns to hym made by the Maire of this Towne and also that all suiche comen Tapstres be avoided out of this Towne by Cristemesse even next comyng by proclamacion thereof to be made.
Also it is ordeyned by the saide congregacioun that non bocher, taillour, shomaker, pateynmaker, nor non other artificer with in this towne except wynetaverners and comen cokes selle no manere fleshe nor other vitaill nor non other ware upon the Sonday to non manere persone of this towne nor straunger upon peyne to pay als oft as he is found defectif vi s. viii d., the tyme of harvest and also cases reasonable of nede and necessarie oonly excepted.
(l.) Friday 'in crastino Ascensionis Domini,' 7 Edward IV.—Also, on the same day a certain brief for the election of burgesses of parliament was read publicly before the Mayor and the community, which brief having been read, the Mayor in accordance with custom chose for the aforesaid election the under-written persons—
|Thomas Calbott||of the number of the xxiiii||Who chose|
|William Raulyn||of the Common Council|
|John Pigott||Who chose||Symon Pigott|
|Robert Hunt||Ralph Gerton|
|Robert Mareis||Robert Vmfray|
|Gilbert Watson||Robert Kereby|
[It may be remarked that John Pigot, Robert Hunt, Symon Pigott and Ralph Gerton were of the Twenty-four Jurats, and that Robert Mareis, Gilbert Watson, Robert Vmfray and Robert Kereby were of the Common Council viz. of the Twenty-Seven representatives of the nine constabularies].
|Richard Godewyn||Who chose||Edward Westhorp||Who|
|Thomas Wright||Ralph Geyton|
|John Boys||Robert Mareis|
|Gilbert Watteson||Robert Vmfray|
(n.) 18 December, 12 Edward IV.—Memorandum:—That on this day Henry Bermyngham mayor and William Nicholasson, burgesses of parliament, declared a certain Act of the parliament, for the grant of a tenth of all the lands and tenements of all persons holding the same in England, for one year; And that the same parliament is prorogued.
(o.) Die Jovis in Festo Decollacionis Sancti Johannis, 16 Edward IV. —On the same day, Walter Cony, Alderman of the Gild of the Holy Trinity of the town of Lenne, and William Nicholasson the Mayor, together with very many other burgesses of the same town, being there present and assembled for the election of the Mayor and other officers of the aforesaid town, for the coming year, the aforesaid Alderman in accordance with the form of an agreement in that respect made, and exemplified under the King's Great Seal took his charge, and chose for the aforesaid election the four under-written burgesses, viz. John Ernesby, John Trunch, William Raulyn, and Edmund Bawsey: Who chose, John Smyth, John Massvngham, Thomas Chamberleyn, and John Blanche, John Burton, William Lamkyn, John Bilney and John Aildburgh.
Which aforesaid twelve persons elected for Mayor of this town for the coming year, Thomas Leighton; for chamberlains, William Herwode, Edmund Demany, Richard Tighe, John Rede; for recorder, John Burbage; for common serjeant, Edward Salthons; for keeper of the east gate and market, William Baker; for keeper of the south gate, William Palmer; for keeper of the doucehill gate, Henry Bocher.
(p.) 6 March, 18 Edward IV.—John Burbage and William Marche, burgesses for the borough of Lenn to be present at the parliament of the Lord King, were in attendance on the said parliament, in going to it, waiting there, and in returning from the same, for fortyseven days.
(q.) 12 March, 19 Edward IV.—Also on the said day it was ordained, for the good of the peace amongst all the burgesses and inhabitants of this town, that in each constabulary of this town one person of the number of the twenty-four jurats shall be chosen for Alderman of that constabulary, and that the same Alderman and the constable of his constabulary shall determine all controversies and debates of every kind whatsoever of the inhabitants of their constabulary, and reduce the parties abiding therein to peace; And that every burgess and inhabitant in each constabulary shall obey and yield to the judgment and ordinance of the aforesaid alderman and constable; And that if the said Alderman and constable shall be unable to reduce the parties to peace, no burgess or inhabitant of any such constabulary shall be suitor in any courts spiritual or temporal, unless he shall have the licence of the Mayor. And for the execution of the aforesaid ordinance, divers persons of the number of the Twenty-Four were chosen Aldermen.
(r.) 24 April, 1 Edward V.—Our said Lord King sent a letter to the Mayor and his brethren &c., which was read on the said day; the tenor whereof follows:—Trusti and welbelovyd We grete you well, and where as it hath pleased [God] to take out of this transitory lyf the most victorious Christen Prince of famous memory King Edward the iiiith our kyng loving lord, and fader, whos soule god of his infinite mercye pardon, The lamentable and most sorowfulle tydynges therof was shewed unto us the xiiiith daye of this present moneth, which stered us to alle sorowe and pensyfnes, yit remembryng that we be alle mortall and nedely must obey goddes ordenaunce and take it therfor as we shalle doo al thynges obeisantly after his will, And where it hath pleased hym to ordeigne and provide us to succede and enherite my seid lord and fader in the preemynence and dignite Royalle of the Crowne of Englond and Fraunche, We entend by hym that sendeth alle power with the feithful assistence of you and other our true and lovyng subgettes so to governe rule and protecte this our Realme of Englonde as shalbe to his pleasyr oure honor and the wele and suerte of all oure subgettes in the same and to be att oure Cite of London in alle convenient haste by goddes grace to be crowned at Westminstre, Willyng and charging you to se that our peax be surely kepte and good governaunce had within the town of Lynne, Not fayling to excute our commandement and your auctorite in that behalfe favour or dewte of eny persons what estate or degre he be offe as ye entende our singler pleasure and your trewe acquittal therin ye shal deserve of us speciall thankes. Yeven-undre our signet at our Castell of Ludlowe the xvi day of Aprill.
(u.) 26 October 1487.—Also yt is accordyd wher as ther is a new pare of stokkes made by the meanes of one Robert Mathew smyth sette aforn the dorr of the said Robert, yt is acordyd þat if the said Robert wyll not obey to the ordenannces of this towne that my mayster the mayr that now is shalle do sette away the said stokkes and set hem in the markett place and to sette the said Robert in the said stokkes in the markett place till he wyll be obedyent.
(v.) 8 January, 11 Henry VII.—This same day John Gryndall alderman and William Horwode chochen burgess of the last parliament cam in and shewid what actes were made in the said parliament, which actes the said John Gryndall aldirman declared and redde them opynly afore alle the congregacion here.
(x.) 24 March, 11 Henry VII.—Thies same day were redde the Kinge's lettres directid from the King the xxiiiith day of March, on to Maistre touching the Diete to be holden at Andewarp betwene the Esterlinges the Stedn and the kinges Ambassadours to understand of any greves as it apperith in the same letter [of] which copie,[is] writtyn in the leiff folowing ; and an other letter directid to the Maier and his brethren for the bonde of thamite and peace entrecourz of merchandise intelligence, and the copie of [the] bonde desired by the King undrcthe to be had and sent to the King, which lres and copie of the bonde bee engrose in the next Leiff, first begynyng of Asshburns booke, as it apperith in the same. It is consentid agreed and condescended by all and every singler persoun of this congregacion that the same bonde shalbe sealid with the comen seale, and they be agreed everychone and upon peyne shall appere at Seint Margarites chirch for the sealing yerof at iiii of the clok at afternoon and William Off' is named and assigned to ride up to London and ther shall delyver the said Bound.
(a.) 5 January, 19 Henry VII.—This day the Mayre have called for the eleccioun of the burges of the parliament theyse persons folowyng, for asmoch as Thomas Guybon late elected burges of the seid parliament hath refewsed and wyl not take upon him,
|Henry Bretenham,||William Osse,||Nicholas Yosson,|
|John Recclys,||Robert Amfless,||William Ivye,|
|John Grendell,||Richard Price,||Thomas Fyssher,|
|John Wilkinson,||John Daweney,||Richard Amfles,|
(b.) 7 January, 1 Henry VIII.—This day by avyce of the congregacion, Mr Meyre hath named for the eleccion of the burgesez of the parliament these persons folowyng, for asmoch as Mr Wyth hathe excused him by the service of the Bysshop of Ely and Mr Gerves by extreme perell of sykenes, therfore the Mayre hath named for the said eleccion these persones followyng—
|Richard Bewshere,||qui elegerunt||John Grendell, senr||Henry Bretenham,|
|Richard Peper,||William Cuesford,||Mr Burdy,|
|Thomas Myller,||Christofer Brodbank||John Grendell, junr|
|John Hullyer,||Roger Bowesey,||Richard Harde,|
|By the Mayor.||Richard Bewshere,||who chose||Robert Soome,||Richard Peper,|
|John Grendell,||Thomas Leyghton,||Richard Price,|
|Thomas Miller,||Christopher Brodbank,||Thomas Roose,|
|Richard Bull,||Thomas Barrett,||John Alward,|
|Sessars||John Grendell, senr,||John Hullyor,||John Barnard,|
|John Alysaunce,||William Barker,||Robert Spaldyng,|
|Richard Peper,||William Hawe,||John Morse,|
|Robert Amfles senr,||Humfre Wolle,||John Assheby,|
(e.) 20 August, 12 Henry VIII.—Memorandum, that the Monday the xxti day of August in the xiith yere of the reigne of Kyng Henry the VIIIte, the tyme of Robert Gerves Mayer of Lenn. The Most Reverend Father in God Thomas Lord Cardynall Legate a latere Archebysshope of York, Primate and Chaunceler of England with the Bysshope of Ely and a Bysshope of Irland, with many knyghtes and esquyers com' to Lenn, Which Lord Cardynall &c. was met on the caunsy beyound Gaywood brigge with the Mayre and commons of Lenn, Which lord Cardynall was presented at Hulyns Place with xxti dosen brede, vi soys of ale, xv barelles of beer, a tonn and xii galon of wyne, ii oxen, xxti shepe, x signettes, xii capons, iii botores, iii shovelerdes, xiii plovers, viii pykes, and iii tenches, and on the next Wednesday after the seyd Lord Cardynall with the forseyd Bisshops knightes and esquyers departed, and the forseyd Mayor and commoinaltye brought the sayd Lord Cardynall beyound Hardewyk churche and ther departed from the sayd Lord Cardynall with gret laude and thankes.—Summa Totalis.—xxii li. vi d. payd for the charges of the seyd present, with rewardes yeven to diverse officers of the seyd Lord Cardynall.
(d.) 31 March, 14 Henry VIII.—Congregation of burgesses held in the Gild Hall of Bishop's Lenn:—Thomas Miller (gubernator), Richard Bewshere, Thomas Leyghton, William Castell, Christopher Brodbank, Richard Peper, John Holyour, Roger Bowesey, Robert Parmenter, Edward Baker, Thomas Palmer, William Crampe, William Olyett, John Dunston, William Gerves, John Judde, Humfrey Wolle, John Odam, William Wygan, William Kenette, Robert Roughton, William Hall draper, Henry Duplak, William Loklay, William Hall taylor, Peter Mowthe, John Malby junr, Robert Candeler, William Baxter, William Mowthe, Simon Thompson.
The greater part of whom, viz., Richard Peper, John Holys, Robert Parmenter, William Olyett, William Gerves, John Judde, Humfrey Wolle, John Odam, William Wygan, William Kenette, Peter Mowthe, John Malby junr, Robert Candeler, William Baxter, Thomas Water, William Mowthe, Simon Thompson, Thomas Herryson, John Whyte, Robert Lambard, John Suff, John Knape elected these two underwritten for burgesses of parliament,
It is worthy of observation that every burgess voting at this election was either one of "the Twenty-four," or one of "the Twenty-seven" and that the introductory record of the persons present at the congregation makes no mention of seven of the persons, who voted with the majority.
(e.) 5 November, 15 Henry VIII.—This daye it is agreed by all the congregacion forseid that a sessement, late sessed for the wages of the burgesses of the parliament, shalbe gathered up by the Collectours of every Ward, and furthermore that the same bylles shalbe gathered abowte agayn, and that every man that was sessed by the first bylles at ii d. shall paye nowe at this second gatheryng of every of them iiii d. And furthermore to sesse all those persounes that be now cum to the Town or were forgoten at the other sessing as they shall thynk reson and good consciens, and that this mony be levyed wythynne viii dayes, and be disposed in makyng the town fensaybyll with gunstones gunpowder bulwarkes, and other artylary in all hast and for to fynd a post accordyng to the commaundement of the kynges commissioneres, and John Malby shalbe the post, and have every weke xviii d. for fyndyng of his horse and his self and every day that he ryde to have xii d.
(f.) Friday before the Feast of Epiphany, 19 Henry VIII.—This day the whole company before-rehersed ben aggred that the Frenche Quene and the Duc of Suffolk shalbe presented at the White Freers with ii hoggeshedes of wyne, iiij swannes, with other wylde fowle.
(g.) Friday before the Feast of All Saints, 27 Henry VIII.—This day the Mayer aldermen and comen counselle have elect and chosen in burgess of the Kinges parliament for the tyme to come in lewe and place of Richard Bewsher, Robert Suthwell esquyer by the whole assent.
(h.) 31 May, 28 Henry VIII.—Congregation held at Bishop's Lenn :— Maior cum xii.:—Thomas Water mayor, John Gryndell, Richard Bowsher, Thomas Leyghton, Thomas Miller, Robert Aumfles, Robert Parmotour, John Water, John Power, Edward Baker, William Hall.
Numerus de xviii :—Peter Cur, William Kenete, William Hall, Peter Clebourn, Henry Dewplak, George Amis, Stephen Leyghton, Roger Bowsey, William Baxter, Thomas Bowsey, William Norman. This day alle the hole assent of theis abovenamed have elect for burgesses of parliament for this towne William Conyngeby and Robert Southwell esquires, and gyven them full auctorite and power to deal with all matters in Parliament.
(i.) Friday, April, 30 Henry VIII.—This day the Mayer, aldermen and comen counsell have elect and chosyn to be burgesses at the parliament for this parliament to begyn the xxviii day of this present moneth of Aprell for this town of Kyng's Len, Robert Suthwell, esquyer, and Thomas Water, and have gyven them full power and auctorite to tract and comon in all and every thynge and thynges consernyng the said parliament.
(j.) Friday, ante festum Natalis Domini, 33 Henry VIII.—Thys daye the Mayer, aldermen, and comon counsell have elect and chosen to be burges of the parlament for thys parlament to begyn the xviith day of Januarii next cumyng for this towne of Kynges Lynne, Thomas Water and Thomas Myllar, and have gyven them full power and auctoryte to treate and comon in all and every thyng and thynges consernyng the sayde parlament.
(b.) Monday before the Feast of St. Michael, 1 Edward VI.—This daye Mr Maior with the whole assent of the aldermen and comen counsell have elected and chosen Mr Thomas Gawdy esq. and Mr William Ouerend to be burgesses of parlyament.
(c.) 7 October, 1 Edward VI.—Badges for pore and impotent persons. This daye yt is agreed that there shalbe badges made of leade and engraved with a roose and an E and an R of the sydes for suche aged and impotent persons as ben within this town and ben not able to labour for theire lyvyng to beare, wherby they maybe knowen from other, and that thees badges shall not be delyvered to any of the sayd impotent persons, butt by the advice of Mr Maior and of the alderman and constable of every ward, wherein they shalbe admytted.
(d.) Friday, in the Vigil of Saints Peter and Paul, 3 Edward VI.— This daye it is agreed and establyshed by Mr Mayor, aldermen and comen counsaill that Mr Mayor on Sundaie next comyng shall in recompens of the wyne and breade for the communyon and for the offering offer and give unto the curat of the church of St. Margaret viiid for all iii churches, and that every inhabitaunt of this town oon after an othr every Sondaye shall doo likewise as the turn shall come abowt in maner and forme as hertofore the Holy Breade Loffe hath ben yevyn, provided allway that yf the hows wherin such inhabitaunt doth inhabit and dwell be not of the value of xxs yerely or soo leaten that then ii or iii of the next shalbe joyned unto hym and to paie porcion lyke towardes the charges of the communyon and offering aforesaid.
(g.) 2 March, 1 Mary.—This daye Mr Mayor, aldermen and comen counsaill have elected and chosen Thomas Waters and William Ouerend to be burgesses of the parlyament nowe to be holden at the citie of Oxforth.
(i.) 3 November, 1 & 2 Philip and Mary.—Mr Mayor, aldermen and comen counsaill have this daie with oon assent and consent elected and chosen Sir Thomas Moyle knight and Thomas Waters to be burgesses of the parlyament.
(j.) Friday next after the Feast of St. Michael, 2 & 3 Philip and Mary.—This daie Mr Mayor, alldermen and comon counsaill have elected and chosen Thomas Waters to be oon of the burgesses of the parlyament, and Sir Nicholas Lestraunge knight for thother burges yf he will receve it yf not then Robert Gervis ys elected.
(k.) Die Jovis ante Festum Natalis Domini, 4 & 5 Philip and Mary. —Mr Mayor, alldermen and comen counsaill have this daye elected Mr Ambrose Gilberd esquier, recorder of this towne, and Mr Thomas Waters to be burgesses of the parlyament.
(m.) 14 December, 5 Elizabeth.—Mr. Maior, aldermen and comen counsaill have this day elected Mr Recorder of this town to be oon of our burgesses of the parlyament for this town, and agreed that a burgess of the town shall be another.
(a.) 16 March, 13 Elizabeth.—This daye Mr Bell, recorder of this towne, and Mr. Kyme, one of the aldermen and a burgesse of this towne, were elected to be burgesses of the parlement, according to the tenor of the statutes in that case made and provided.
(c.) 6 August 1578.—At this daye Mr Mayor, aldermen and comen councell have condiscended and agreed that, where the Quenes Majestie ys nowe comyng into the Countie of Norfolk, in progress, that (to thintent to sheawe there dutifull obedience and good wills) a present shal be gevin and presented to her Majestie of one hundred Angellz yf yt shall so be thought mete and convenient by the Erle of Leycester, beinge Highe Stewarde of this towne, and Mr Recorder, towardes the performance whereof there was delivered to Mr Maier xlv li. x s. of the comen treasour of this Town.
(d.) 13 January, 22 Elizabeth.—At this daye Mr Mayor, aldermen and burgesses have elected and chosen John Payton esquire to be burgess of the parlament for this Boroughe, and have given to the said John Payton full and sufficient power for hymself and the Comoinaltie of the same Borough to do and concent to thoes thinges which in the said parlament of the Comen Councell of the Quenes Majesties realme (God favoringe) shall happen to be ordeyned, accordyng to a precept to us directed by Thomas Knyvett knight, highe shiriff of the countie of Norfolk.
(e.) 8 November 1584.—At this daye Mr Maier, aldermen and comen counsell have elected and chosen John Peyton esq. and Richard Clark alderman, burgesses and inhabitantes of the Town of Kinges Lenn, to be burgesses in the parliament howse of this burgh of Kynges Lenn att the next parliament, now summoned to be holden and kepte the xxiii of this present moneth, and have geven unto them full and sufficient power for themselves and comynaltie of this borough, to do and concent to those thinges, which in the parlyament aforesaid of the comen counsell of Quenes Majesties realme (God favouringe) shall happen to be ordeyned.
(f.) 24 May 1585.—Forasmuche as it hath pleased Allmightie God to begynn to send us his visitacion with sickenes amongst us, and that dogges and cattes are thought verie unfitt to be suffered in this tyme, Therfore Mr Maior, aldermen and comon councell have ordered and decreed that every Inhabitant within the same Town shall forthwith take all their dogges and yappes, and hange them or kill them, and carrye them unto some out-place and burye them for breadinge of a greater anoyaunce, but onlie such as have a dogge of accompte, that will keep the same kenelled or tied up, or not to come abrode, unlesse the same be led in a lease, otherwise the same to be killed fourthwith by such as shalbe appointed for that purpose (except the dogges of Straungers comyng into this Town with their Masters, not knowing of this order). And likewise for cattes, if there be any nigh unto any house or houses visited with sickenes in this towne, for that thei be very daungerous to infecte sound and cleare houses. Therefore it is likewise ordered that the cattes shall furthwith be killed in all suche places.
(g.) 5 October 1586. — Att this daie Mr Richard Clark and Mr Thomas Oxburgh are elected and chosen by Mr Mayor, the aldermen and comen counsell to be burgesses for this burrough, for the parliament summoned to begyn the xvth of this present moneth of October.
(h.) 4 August 1587.—Also att this daie it is agreed by Mr Maior, the aldermen and comen counsell that his Majesties players nowe beinge in this towne shall have geven them of the townes allowances xl s.
(i.) 4 November 1588. — Att this daye Mr Richard Clarck and Mr Thomas Boston aldermen are elected and chosen by Mr Mayor the aldermen and comen counsell to be burgesses for this burgh, for the parliament summoned to begynne the xiith daye of this present moneth of November, &c. &c.
(j.) 18 July 1589.—At this daie there was graunted to be allowed to Mr Sandill, in respecte he did in the yere of his maioraltie entertayn Sir Walter Rawlye knight and his companye in resortinge hether about the Quenes affayrs, and that he did entertayn the Deputie-Lievetenauntes resortinge hether about the townes affairs, tenne poundes:—Summa x li."
(b.) 16 September 1597.— Record of the election, by "Mr Maior the aldermen and comen counsell burgess [es] of this town," of Thomas Oxburgh esq., recorder of the town, and Nathanyell Bacon esq. to be burgesses of parliament.
(c.) 9 October 1601.—Record of the election, by "Mr Mayor, the aldermen and comen counsell burgesses of this town," of Thomas Oxburgh esq., recorder of the town, and Sir Robert Mansell knt., vice-admyrall of Norfolk, to be burgesses of parliament.
(d.) 18 February 1603. Record of the election, by "the Maior and burgesses of this towne," of Thomas Oxburgh esq., recorder of this town, and Robert Hitcham esq., the Quenes Majesties attornye, to be burgesses of parliament of the said town, with memorandum "for that the said Mr Hitcham is not as yett a free burgesse of this burgh, ytt is therlore required and ordered that he shall repaire hether before the vith of the said moneth to be made a Free Burgesse of the said towne."
(e.) 23 July 1610. Memorandum :—Allso whereas Sir Robt. Hitcham knight, the Queenes Maties attorney-generall is proposed to come to this towne from the Assizes at Norwich to take his jorny to Elie where he is Judge of that County Palatyne, and that the said Sir Robt. Hitcham is one of the burgesses of this burgh [at] this present Parliament and promised to take noe wages for the same when he was elected. Therefore itt is agreed that the Towne shall bestowe upon hym (as a gratuity) twenty poundes, and that he shall be intertayned by Mr Mayor and that the charge thereof and of his horesemeat shall be borne by the towne.
(a.) 20 June 1614. All so itt was agreed that Mr Maior shall be allowed for his burgis wages for every day wherein he served this last parliament the some of tenne shillinges per day. He went from hence the first of Aprill last and returned the xi of June next following.
(b.) 14 October 1616. At this day itt was agreed that a Letter shall be written by Mr Maior and the aldermen to the Lo. Chancelor of England, the townes High Steward, to intreat that he will be a meanes that all the companyes of players which yerely resort to this towne may nott be suffered here to use playing notwithstandinge their grantes and patentes made unto them.
(c.) 15 December 1620. Record of the election, by "Mr Maior the aldermen and comon counsell," of Mr Matthewe Clark and Mr John Wallis, aldermen, to be burgesses of parliament for the town: with memorandum that "the Maior aldremen and comon counsel have granted that either of the said burgesses shall have for their wages tenne shillinges for every day of the said parliament and for every day of their traveill outward and homeward."
(d.) 22 January 1628. Record of the election, by the "Maior the aldermen and comon councell" of John Wallis and William Doughty, aldermen of the town, to be burgesses of parliament; with memorandum of an agreement "that the severall wages of those that shall be elected burgesses of this burrough shall be fyve shillinges a piece for every daye."
(e.) 25 April 1625.—Record of the election by "Mr Maior the aldermen and comon councell," of Thomas Gurlyn and John Cook aldermen, to be burgesses of parliament for the borough; with memorandum that each of the two burgesses is to have for his "wages" five shillings a day.
(f.) 16 January 1625.—Record of the election, by "Mr Maior the aldermen and comon counsell," of Thomas Gurlyn and John Cook, to be burgesses of parliament for the borough, at "wages for every day of fyve shillinges a piece."
(g.) 25 February 1627.—Record of the election, by "Mr Maior the aldermen and comon counsell," of Sir John Hare, knt. and William Doughty, one of the aldermen of the town, to be burgesses of parliament for the borough.
(h.) 16 December 1631.—Allso itt is granted that the chamberlyns shall pay unto Hester Ogden the late dawghter of Doctor Fulk deceased towards the newe reprintinge of the books of her said father five pownds.
(i.) 31 March 1633.—At this daie [it] was apoynted that Fiftie-one shillinges and eight pence should be paied to Mr Mayor by the Chamberlins for a gratuitie sent my Lord Cheefe Justice Richardson: also fortie shillinges to send away his Majesties Plaiours of his private chamber in Yorke without actinge heere.
(X.) 12 Charles I. to 10 Charles II.—Assembly (or Congregation) Book, No. IX.; large folio of 561 leaves, with pamplet index to contents, at the opening of the volume, containing with a large number of other entries, the following matters of record,—
(a.) 13 March 1639.—Record of the election, by "Mr. Maior the aldermen and common counsell," of Mr. Doughty and Mr. Gurlyn, two aldermen of the borough, to be burgesses of parliament for the town at the parliament, summoned to be holden at Westminster on 13 April next coming, having "for their wages fyve shillinges a day."
(b.) 12 October 1640.—Memorandum, respecting two letters,—one addressed to Mr. Mayor, the aldermen and common council, and the other addressed to the Mayor alone,—from the Earl of Arundell, Lord General, requesting that one of the burgesses to represent King's Lynn in the next parliament may be a person nominated by him; with record that "yt is unanimously agreed by the howse that they will choose noe other burgesses to serve in Parliament, but only such as are resident and inhabitinge within the corporacion, and that two letters shalbe sent the Erle, one by the Maior and Aldermen, and the other by the Mayor himself, in answeare of the said letters."
(c.) 22 March 1640.—Order that a letter, brought in by Mr. Mayor and read to the congregation, should be fairly written out and sent to Mr. Percevall and Mr. Toll, burgesses of the Parliament for this town.
(d.) 24 October 1642.—Record that Mr. Toll, one of the burgesses for King's Lynn in the present parliament, brought into the congregation an Order of the parliament (copied into the present book) for putting Lynn in a state of military defence and efficiency, and for permitting no soldiers to enter the town without the authority of the parliament.
(e.) 11 November 1642.—Memoranda of the persons appointed to be officers of the two trained bands of King's Lynn; with copy of the warrant (dated 11 November 1642) of the Mayor and aldermen to captains of the same bands, for drilling and furnishing their soldiers "soe as they may be fitted for the defence of the Kinge and Kingdome upon one howers warnynge."
(f.) 18 November 1642.—Memorandum that the "one hundred powndes formerly agreed by the house to be lent to the Parliament upon the Propositions &c., was accordingly payd and delivered to Mr. Percivall and Mr. Maxey, aldermen, the treasurers appoynted by the Parliament Committee, whoe gave a receipt for the same under their handes."
(g.) 5 November 1642.—Order of Assembly, for Mr. Recorder, Mr. Leeke, Mr. Percivall, and Mr. Toll, to go to Norwich, and there attend the meeting, summoned by the Deputy-Lieutenants of Norfolk "for consultinge and consideringe of some speedy course to be taken for the trained bandes of horse and foot to be fitted in a-readiness to oppose foreigne forces much feared to be sodainly landed in some part of the Coastes of Norfolke, Suffolk, and Essex."
(h.) 12 December 1642.—Order of Assembly that neither the trained bands nor voluntiers of the borough shall go out of the town in soldierly fashion for any military purpose without the permission of the Mayor and aldermen, "unto whom the militia of this burrough is by lawe granted."—Also Order of Assembly, for Mr. Recorder and Mr. Leek to attend "at Norwich on Thursday next the generall meeting of the Deputy-Lieutenants of this county . . . . . . to the end that a mutuall corespondence and communication of all affairs and intervening passages, tending to the good and safety as well of the county as of this towne, may be signified by the lievetenauntes to Mr. Mayor before the determinate Resolucion by them of any act to be here performed." —Also Order of Assembly, that the captain of volunteers within the borough shall not train or show his men in any place, save the Artillery Yard, within the borough.—Also, Order of Assembly, "that a peticion be drawen to the Parliament to desier fyve hundred poundes to be allowed out of the moneys lent by this Towne, upon the proposicions, towards the towne fortifications begunne; And also ten peeces of ordinance to plant thereon, and allso a certificate to be procured from the Deputy Lievetenauntes of this county to attest the said Peticion. And the said Peticion is desired to be preferred by the parliament burgesses for this towne, whoe beinge now present have promised to promote the same with their best assistaunce."
(i.) 30 December 1642.—Memorandum: This day Mr. Percevall and Mr. Toll, aldermen and Burgesses of the parliament for this burough, by the handes of the said Mr. Percevall in the other's absence, did bringe in and deliver into this House, of the subscription moneys upon the parliament propositions collected within this burough in their handes remaininge, the just summe of fyve hundred twenty-five powndes fifteene shillinges and six pence in moneys numbred. To the end the said moneys shalbe heare deposited in trust, and to such only purposes as is particularly expressed in an Order entered at the last Hall and congregacion heare howlden and accordinge to the trew Scope thereof.
(j.) 2 January 1642.—This day an Order of the Commons House in Parliament, dated Sabti 15 October 1642, was brought and produced in the howse by Mr. Percevall and Mr. Toll, aldermen, in hec verba sq.:— "It is this day Ordered by the Commons now assembled in parliament, That the Maior, aldermen and common counsell of the towne of Kinges Lynne in the county of Norfolk shall pay and allowe out of the towne stock as formerly, unto John Percevall and Thomas Toll their burgesses, for this present parliament, as lardge an allowance per diem as they have heretofore allowed any of their aldermen that hath bene burgesses in parliament for that towne, notwithstanding the freemen of that towne had their voyces in the choice of the said John Percivall and Tho: Toll to be their burgesses for this present parliament. If the Mayor of Lynne can shew any cause to the contrary, we shalbe ready to heare him."
And yt is thereupon ordered that Mr. Maior, Mr. Recorder, Mr. Doughty, Mr. May and Mr. Leeke with all convenient speede shall consider of and draw up a fittinge answeare to present to the Honourable House of Commons upon the said order and offer the same to be allowed by the howse.
(k.) 11 January 1642.—Letter from Mr. Percevall, one of the aldermen and burgesses of parliament for King's Lynn, touching the proceedings of the parliament in respect to the town's petition for an assignment of the money, already raised by the town for the use of the parliament, to the fortification of the town. "They fell in the end," says the writer "to consider how to gett money for their present and urgent occasions, and then came to say theare was much money to come from Norfolk, and some from Lynne. I tooke occasion to tell them what I had received in plate and money at Lynne upon the proposicions, and what plate was sent up, and what money was ready to be sent up, and what we had begunne to doe accordinge to their commaund touchinge the fortifyinge the towne, and what a greate deale of money that has already cost, and would cost to finishe yt, And delivered in your Peticion, And yt was presently ordered we should have 400li. out of the said money towards our fortification, and I beleeve I had gott 500li., had not a member of the House, that Mr. Robinson and Mr. Kirby spake with, stood up and said that they said 400li. would content them, or wordes to that effect."
(l.) 20 March 1642.—Order that a free entertaynment at the Towne chardges shalbe made by Mr. Maior for Colonell Cromwell, and the rest of those gentlemen that shall come alonge with him in his Equipage, accordinge to the invitacion of Mr. Mayor signified by his letter, sent to him yesterday in answeare of a letter, dated the day before, sent to Mr. Mayor from Colonell Cromwell.
(m.) 27 March 1643.—This daye, at the request of the howse by Mr. Maior made to the right worthy and noble gentleman, Jonn Spelman esq., a deputy-lieutenant of this county, to take the paynes to ryde to Cambridge, accompanied and attended by Mr. Alderman Hudson, Mr. William Williams, Mr. Jonas Scott of the Common Counsell, theare to countenance and assiste the delivery of a letter to Colonell Cromwell from this house, much ymportinge the peace of this towne and the generall peace of the Kinge and Parliament, in whiche letter yt is desired that the Colonell should write to the Parliament by Mr. Recorder and Mr. Kirby whoe are also to accompany them to Cambridge and from thence to Parliament, theare to attend &c. It is ordered so that this be done at the Town Chardge.
(n.) 5 May 1643.—Order that a letter shalbe forthwith sent up to the parliament from Mr. Mayor and aldermen, directed to Mr. Corbett, whoe sittes in the chayer at the Committee for Informacions, desiringe him in the townes behalf to present the sence of this howse to the Honorable House of Commons, to this effect,—To desire an order from them therby to authorize Mr. Maior to examine all such persons, strangers as are now lately or hereafter shall shroud themselves within this towne and which may be supposed to be malignantes or probably coniectured to be so, And to remove or apprehend such of them as Mr. Maior with the rest of his fellow-justices shall thinke meete.
(p.) 7 August 1643.—Whereas in these dangerous [times] it is informed to this House that not only a great companie are now to come into this burgh, but that an overmultitude of such strangers will suddenly pester the said burgh; it is therefore ordered and thought meete by the Maior recorder aldermen and common counsell heer present, that generall and spetiall notis shalbe given to all and everi the howshoulders and inhabitants of this burgh that henceforth they receive not, nor presume to entertaine into ther howses any person or persons whatsoever before first they acquaint Mr. Maior with ther purpose in that behalfe, and therin receive his direction; and in the meane time it is further thought meet and so ordered that this matter, now in debate before us, shalbe communicated by Mr. Maior unto the Committee of Parliament, to be assembled one the morrowe next within this burgh, to the end that such further course may be taken in the premises, as thereby no hurt or hinderance may happen to our Assotiation latly made, with and concerninge the parts adjacent to the said burgh, touching ther entertainement therin for ther and our better saffetie in these times of danger.
(q.) 21 August 1643.—This day it is consented unto and ordered by this howse that all the lanes in this towne may be paled up with deale bordes next the water side and doores made to be locked up by all night-longe and stand open all day longe ; and to oversee the worke Mr. Robinson alderman, Mr. Simans, Mr. Wharton [and] Mr. Skott of the common councell with the chamberlains are desired to doe it.
(s.) 28 September 1643.—Whereas upon a late treaty betwixt the Commissioners on the Right Honorable the Earle of Manchester's part and the Commissioners on the behalf of this burrough, towchinge the surenderinge thereof into His Lordship's hands, to the use of the King and parliament, amongst other articles in the said treaty concluded upon, vizt. in the 7th Article yt is conteyned and concluded to this effect following, scilicet, That Ten shillinges a man for all the foote souldiers, and a fortnightly pay for all the officers under captaynes in his Lordship's army be raysed and levied upon the said towne of Kinges Lynne, The estates of the Gentlemen, straungers and wellaffected not beinge lyable therunto, As by the said Article appeareth amongst the rest, dated 16th September 1643. And whereas his Lordship by his letter under his Lordship's hand, dated the 26th of this instant directed to Mr. Maior, did requier expedicion of the said assessment, declareinge therby the Summe to be assessed to be 2300l. to the uses aforesaid, Therfore by consent of this howse yt is ordered that the said assessment be entered into debate instantly and performed accordingly by such equall wages as shalbe thought most fittinge.
(t.) 24 November 1643.—This day it is ordered that Mr. Perceval and Mr. Toll aldermen, which are Burgesses in this present parliament for this bourgh, shalbe allowed 5s. a day a man from the time they went up to the parliament till this day out of the howse.
(u.) 26 January 1643.—Also this day it is ordered that Mr. Jno. Bassitt, Mr. Maxie, Mr. Robbinson aldermen, together with Mr. Joshua Grene, Mr. Robert Thoroogood, and Mr. Thomas Greene, or any fower of them, shall consider what damadge hath bene done to the howses and landes belonginge to this Borough, in the late desertion of this towne, and to appoint such workemen, to view the same and to preferr the same to the gentlemen appointed by the Lords and Commons in . . . for repararations of such losses.
(v.) 16 February 1643.—Order that Mr. Toll, alderman and burgess of parliament, and Mr. Jonas Skott, one of the common counsell, go to the Earl of Manchester at Cambridge, "with a peticion about payment for firinge and candell for the Courtes of . . . and concerninge the breakinge the church windowes and concerninge the taking down of the painted glass, and what other thinges shall concerne the towne."
" " Also, Order that Mr. Maxey alderman, with twelve other persons named in the order, or any seven of them, "with other parishioners that will come shall assist the churchwardens to make an assessment uppon the parishioners for the repairinge of the church windows accordinge to the ordinaunce of Parliament."
(x.) 8 March 1644.—Order (in reference to a letter from Sir John Mildrum, begging for ammunition and victuals, to assist him in holding Scarburgh against the enemy) that Mr. Maxey and Mr. Robinson aldermen, and Mr. Jonas Scott and Mr. Murford of the common counsell shall forthwith "make fitt such provision of beare and victualls, as they shall think good and fittinge, and send the same to Scarbrugh to the said Sir John, nott exceeding fower hundred powndes." Copy of this letter from Scarburgh was sent to the Committees of Cambridge and Norwich.
(y.) 18 March 1645.—Order of Assembly for the execution of the order of Commissioners (dated 13 March 1644, and signed—Miles Corbett, Valentyne Walton and Tho. Toll), requiring, in accordance with order of parliament, the heir of Mr. Thomas Gurlyn (late Mayor of Lynn), Sir Hamon Lestrange and Robert Clench esquire, to pay in equal proportions the sum of 287l. 1s. 6d. in compensation of damage done at their instance and command to the Mayor and burgesses of Lynn; it having been shown "that Thomas Gurlyn late Mayor of the said towne of Lynne, Sir Hamon Lestrange knt., and Robert Clench esquier did in or about the moneth of September 1643 att Lynne aforesaid unjustly comaund and cause certeyne houses and walls in South Lynne, of the said Mayor and Burgesses, to be pulled downe and demolished to the damage of the said Mayor and Burgesses, two hundred eighty-seven poundes one shilling and eight pence."
(z.) 24 November 1645.—This daye itt is agreed [and] ordered that Mr. Robinson, Mayor, shall att his pleasure sett up and build in Luth Street to his prevye dweelinge howse there one compleat porch, such as he shall think good.
(aa.) 8 September 1649.—It is this day ordered, That a letter be written to the Right Honble the Earle of Salisbury by the Mayor from his house, to give him knowledge, that this house hath granted him the freedom of this burgh, and that the cominalty of this burgh hath elected him a burgess of the parliament of England."
(bb.)—September 1649.—Copy of the Earl of Salisbury's reply
to the letter, sent him in accordance with the last given order,—Gentlemen, As the President you have made in choosing of me to be your
burgess is unusuall (I beleeve) if not the first amongst you, so doth it
lay the greater obligac'on uppon me, neither is that favour a little
heightened by my being so much a stranger unto you as indeede I am.
And as you have heere an open and free acknowledgment from me of
your kinde and good affections in so unanimous an elecc'on of me to serve
you in Parliament, as your letter doth expresse, so cannot they merit, or
you expect more thanks then I do really retorne unto you for them ;
you have bene pleased cheerefully (as you say) to conferre your freedome
upon me, I shall ever be as zealous in mantaining of yours. And as I
am not ignorant of the great trust you have placed in me, so shall you
never be deceived in it. For the addresses you are to make unto me
(as your occasions shall require) they shall not be so many as cheerefully
received, And whatsoever may concerne the publique good or yours shall
ever be pursued with all faithfullness and diligence by him that is—
Your very loving friend,
(cc.) 11 August 1656.—This day General John Desbrow and MaiorGenerall Phillip Skippon are chosen in this House to serve as burgesses for this burrough in his Highnes next parliament at Westminster, upon the seventeenth day of September next, according to a precept directed to Mr. Mayor from the sheriff, which was this day read in this House.
" " It is this day ordered that the common seale be taken out and fixed to an indenture for the election of Generall Desbrow and Maior-Generall Skippon, being choses burgesses for the burrough, to sit in the next parliament by this House, which indenture is to be returned to the high sheriffe of the county.
(dd.) 26 September 1656.—It is this day ordered that Mr. John Horsnell of London be sent unto by this house as their solicitor in this behalfe to attende upon the Committee of Previledges at Westminster to make good this houses auncient Custome of electing of burgesses to set in parliament and that an abbreviate of the records be sent up to him in order to his prosecution of the same. And that in order thereunto Mr. Newelect Mr. Joshua Greene, Mr. Thomas Greene, Mr. Benjamyn Holly aldermen, the town clarke Mr. Robinson, Mr. Popo and Mr. Clampe, or any four or more of them, and any other of the house that please, be a Committee, And are desired to meet this afternoon . . . . to draw up instructions and state the busines of election clearly betweene this house and the comons of this burgh and make theire report to this house the next Hall day.
(ee.) 29 September 1656.—It is this day ordered that Mr. John Horsnell of London be desired to attend upon Mr. Clarke of Bury now being in London with such instruccions as shall be sent unto him concerneing the custome of this House for electing burgesses to sett in parliament for this burgh according to the order of the last Hall day, and that the committee appoynted the last hall day for that purpose do sett this afternoone.
(ff.) 19 December 1656.—This day Sir John Thorowgood was by this house chosen to be one of the burgesses to serve in this present parliament for this burrough in the roome and place of Gen'all John Disbrowe who hath made his election to serve for the county of Somersett and thereupon the common seale is by order taken out of of the Treasury and affixed to an indenture testifieing the said election.
(gg.) 7 August 1657.—It is this day ordered that the chamberlyns doe pay unto Mris. Wheelock the summe of twenty shillings as a gratuity to her in consideration of a booke presented by her to this house being the 4 Gospells in the Pertian Language, the worke of her deceased husband.
(hh.) 7 August 1657.—Whereas William Dumbelow the marshall of this towne hath committed a very greate offence in not observeing the command of Mr. Mayor and Captain White upon this day of proclayming his Highnes the Lord Protectour whereby a difference hath beene likely to arise betweene the officers of this gairison and this towne, It is thereupon this day ordered that the said William Dumbelow for his neglect and default aforesaid be remooved from his said office.
(jj.) 8 September 1658.—Official announcement of Cromwell's death and of his appointment of Richard for his successor; dated from Whitehall 4 Sept. 1658, and signed—He. Lawrence Presidt.—Followed by this Memorandum.
Whereas it hath pleased Almighty God in his wise and over-ruleing Providence to take into his mercy the most Serene and Renowned Oliver late Lord Protector of this common wealth, And whereas his said late Highness did in his life tyme, according to the humble peticion and advice, appoynt and declare the most noble and illustrious lord, the Lord Richard Eldest Soun of his said late Highnes to succeed him in the government of these nations, We therefore the Mayor and other the magistrates of this burrough of Kings Lynn in the name and with the consent and concurrence of the comonalty of the said burgh doe with one full voyce and consent of tongue and hart publish and proclayme the said most noble and illustrious Lord Richard to be the Rightfull Lord Protector of this common wealth of England, Scotland, and Ireland and the dominions and territoryes thereunto belonging, to whome we acknowledge all fidelity and constant obedience according to law and the said humble peticion and advice, with all harty and humble affections beseeching the Lord by whome princes rule to blesse him with long life and these nations with peace and happines under his government.
(a) 3 January 1658.—About Election of Burgesses to sett in Parliament. Whereas severall burgesses of this burrough of the commons at large have this day made their requestes to this house that they might be admitted to joyne with this house in the election of burgesses to sett in the next parliament to be houlden at Westminster the 27th day of this instant January, It is thought fitt and ordered that the resolves of the Committee of Priviledges of the last parliament and the parliamentes Orders thereupon concerning elections be first read unto them in the open hall which is done accordingly.
This day alsoe upon further debate of the aforesaid business of election of burgesses to sett in the next parliament for this burrough it being adjudged by this house that the right of election of the said burgesses is at present in this house according to the aforesaid order, It is therefore ordered that this house doe proceed to an election accordingly, And that in case the said commons at large shall after such election persist in theire desires to have the precept for election of burgesses to be read unto them That the same be read unto them accordingly for theire satisfaction.
Mr. Toll and Capt. Lloyd chosen burgesses for parliament. This day the Mayor, aldermen and common councell have elected and chosen Mr. Thomas Toll one of the Aldermen of this burrough and captain Griffifth Lloyd to be Burgesses for this burrough in the next parliament to be houlden at Westminster upon the 27th of January instant.
(b.) 16 April 1660. The election of burgesses to serve in Parliament waved by the House for this present election. Whereas Mr. Mayor hath this day caused a Common Hall to be warned in order to the election of burgesses to serve in the next parliament to be houlden at Westminster and severall of the members of the house being mett together in this house, divers of the free burgesses of this burgh came and requested that they might be admitted to elect burgesses for the said parliament as theire right, which being taken into consideration this house doth think fitt for the present satisfaction of the people to suffer the commons to elect, and to wave the election in this house for this present election.