The Manuscripts of Rye and Hereford Corporations, Etc. Thirteenth Report, Appendix Part IV. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1892.
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Whereas it is thought that the trouble of Captain Graymont, now detained prisoner in Rye for "whasshing" of money, is come rather of private malice than of just cause, it is thought meet by Lord Burghley that he be not proceeded against as yet, but be sent to his Lordship under safe guard. Has sent up the money washed. Seal of arms.
According unto my Lord Warden's letters "I have sent unto your honor Capytaine Graymont, late taken at Ry uppon suspicion of washinge and diminyshinge the Quenis Majesties quoyne, together with his examynacion herin closed." Draft.
Enclosure.—The examination of Francis Boysant alias Captain Grammont, taken on August 2. He states that he arrived at Bristol from Rochelle about two months past. From thence he went to various places till he came to Rye. He brought with him three melting pots which he purchased in London and has melted money for the past half year. In an inventory of his goods there is mention of a purse containing "2 dubill duccattes, 1 Batenbrugh angell, 2 crownes French, 1 Philipps doller of silver, 1 Philipps 12d. pec., 2 seugt peics."
The first four questions relate to the jurisdiction and procedure of the Chancery Court at St. James' Dover and the Admiralty Court. The fifth, to the enjoyment of wrecks and "findals." The sixth and seventh, to the goods and "findals" of pirates and the imprisonment of pirates. And the eighth, to the sending of copies to the Ports of special letters of the Ports service remaining with the Lord Warden.
1571, September 22.—Recognizance by Nicholas Fowler, "appointed and licenced to keep a victualinge house within the towne of Ry for this yere to come, for the releiff of his poore neighbours and other good, honest, wayfaringe and travailinge persons." The conditions of the said recognizance are that "the said Nicholas Fowler do at all tymes hereafter, duringe this said yere to come, kepe and mayntaine his house with convenient victuals, and not mayntaining beds nor sufferinge in his house at any tyme or tymes any unlawfull games, nether sell ne utter any victuals within or without his house in tyme of Devine service to be celebrated in the Parishe Church of Rye uppon the Sondaies and holy daies, nor in the night after convenient tymes, that is to saie, after the houres of nyne of the clocke at afternone of every day in the sommer and eight of the clocke at afternone in the tyme of winter, except in case of necessitie, nether after the same houres receive any suspecte person or persones (other then suche as he will answer for) into his house, to enter drinke or lodge, without the speciall commandment of Mr. Maior or of some one of the jurats, nor at any tyme or tymes do suffer to remayne in his house any idle persons longe to sit singinge, drinkinge, or idly to the mayntenance of idlenes and of idle persons. And also the said Nicholas Fowler do, duringe all the said tyme of his victualinge, sell his drinke, as well out of doores to his neighbours as within, and the same by the measure of the hoopid poote commonly called a thirdindeale and half thirdendeale, and also uppon the ordinary and accustomed fishe daies do victuall his said house with fishe uppon the tables accordinge unto the lawes and statutes of this realme, not kepinge any common or pety tapesters, and payinge such duties as he is appointed for his victualinge, and kepinge all other honest lawfull and decent orders as perteyneth to an honest victualer within the said towne of Ry." Draft.
1571, September 28, Dover Castle.—Lord Cobham, "Constable of the Castle of Dover, Lord Warden of the Five Ports" etc., to the Mayor and Jurats of Sandwich and Dover, the Bailiffs and Jurats of Hythe, the Mayor and Jurats of Romney, and of the ancient towns of Rye and Winchelsea, and the Bailiff and Jurats of Hastings.
"I charge and commande you and every of you that within the precinct of your severall liberties, every of you immediately by vertue herof, doe geve ordre that no manner of victuell from hensforth shall passe to be carried to the sea for the victualinge or relife of the flete nowe serving the Prince of Orenge." Copy.
[1571, September.]—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that they have chosen Henry Mynge and Robert Carpenter, Jurats, to appear and be at the City of Canterbury on Thursday, September 20, at the Bishop's Palace Hall there, before Serjeant Manwod and others appointed by the Lord Warden, to hear what is to be alleged for and concerning such controversies as at this present are between the said Lord Warden and the Five Ports and their members.
"Where divers complaintes are daily brought unto the Quenis Majestie of greate and heynous spoilles committed upon the seis by certaine captains, who, namying themselves to be in the Prince of Orenge's service, suffer no man to passe by them untakin or unspoiled, and namely have of late (as it is informid) in very violent sorte taken divers shippes laden with riche marchandizes belonging as well to the Company of the Marchantes of the Stillyard as to sondry other honest marchantes of Italy and other places, whiche prises they have brought uppon this Hir Majesties coaste and thare utterid the wares and marchandizes by them spoiled, being also relevid frome thence with victuals, munition and other provisions to the great slaunder of the realme and impechment of the haunt and traffique of marchandize. Leike as the Quenis Majestie cannot but fynd this disorder very strange, and must nedes for justice sake se the same reformid with convenient spede, so hath hir Highnes willid me to require you, in hir Majesties name, to cause dilligent and substanciall order to be forthwith taken thorough out all the portes and crekes within my rule, not only that the said Captaines or others, beinge men of warr, that shall haunt that coast uppon any manner of pretence, be not in anywise sufferid to resort into any of the same portes, or to be relevid with victuals, or any other necessaries, or to utter or sell any of the goods by them taken unto any of hir Majesties subjectes, but also to give exprese commandment unto the officers of the Portes that they faile not to cause the said men of warr, capitains and others, against whom any complainte shalbe made, to be apprehended with their shipes and company, and the goodes that they shall have taken in whos handes soever the same shalbe founde, to be steyid and commytted by inventory unto sure custody to be answered unto suche as by order of justice shalbe founde to have right therunto. Which order hir Majestie muche marvaileth hath not ben heretofore better observid consideringe howe often warninge hath ben at severall tymes gevin therof, as well by hir Highnes proclamations heretofore sett forthe in that behalf, as by my letters wrytten by hir Majesties commandement for that purpose. Whereunto hir Majestie requireth you and them hensforth to have speciall regarde." Copy.
"Forasmuch as it is perceavid that uppon a gracious and merciful disposition in the Quenes most excellent Majestie in granting favor to suche strangers as of late time have been compellid for the avoyding of the calamities and trobles that were in sondrey countryes beyonde the seas, besides a great multitude of good, honeste and devoute poore and afflicted people, there are allso another nombre of evill disposed people under color of religion and pietie lately entred at soudry portes and crekes into the realme, whereby the naturall good subjectes are like not only to be corrupted with the evil conditions of them which are nawght, but allso by the excesse nombre of bothe sortes shall sustaine divers wayes suche lackes as is not mete to be born withall, besydes other inconveniences justly to be feared by practises of the lewder sorte. For remeady herof her Majestie hath willid us presently and without delay to take order for redresse herof and therewith allso to cause such moderation to be used as in no city or towne there should be any greater nombre of strangers, thowghe they be of honest conversation, suffered to resorte and abyde otherwise then may stand charitably with the weale, or at least without damage of the naturall subjectes and inhabitants of the same places. Whereuppon as we have directid order to other counties, cities, and townes so do we at this present to you, willing and commanding you forthwith to take order, that beginning the 10th day of the next moneth, at which time a like inquisition shall be begoun through other the maritime counties of the realm, you do by all good meanes that in you do lye, cause a good and certen serche to be made howe manie straingers of every nation are within that towne and, distinctly aparte, howe manie are come into that towne since the 25th of Marche laste, and by what quallitie and meanes they do lyve and sustayne themselves, and howe they doe inhabite, and in what sorte they doe resorte orderly to any churches and places of prayer to heare and use devyn services and sacramentes, as by the ecclesiasticall lawes of this realm they ought to do, or otherwise wheare any straingers are tolleratid withall by the Busshop of the diocese to use devyne services in theire owne mother tunges, and hereof to make to us certificat. And further you shall circumspectly and charitably consider amongste yourselves being publique officers there, usinge conference therin with the Busshop of the diocese, if he be nere unto you, or with the ordinary parson or curat of the place, whether the whole numbre of straingers now residing in that towne, being of honest conversation, may, without damage to the naturall good subjectes of the same, continew in as greate a nombre as they now are. And if the nombre shall seme to you to greate, to consider howe many may be suffred to remayne and in what sorte and to what other places convenient for their relief the excesse may be sent to have habitation, so as order may be given for that purpose; wherein we do not meane that any regard shall be had but only to suche straingers as are knowen to be honest in conversation and well disposed to the obedience of the Quenes Majestie and the realm, for it is ment and so wee will you that all other straingers of contrary sorte that shall not shew a good and open testymony to be obedient, as above is said, shall be charged as unprofitable persons to departe by a reasonable time. And therin you shall use all carefulnes and circumspection to cause them indeede to departe the realm. Besydes this you shall cause a due serche to be made what armour or offensive weapons anie strangers have in theire houses, and, if causse so shall seme requisite, to comit the same into the custody of some mete parsons of that towne that maye be answearable for the same to the owners. And of all thes the premisses we chardge yow with all speade to make to us answeare by wrighting with your opinions in anie thing concerning the same. When you have considered of the persones whome you thinke meete to be sent away out of the realme, we wolde that you shoulde advertise us of the nombre, quallities and conditions of their trade, and maner of lyving of the same persones so mete to be sent oute of the realme, before they be sent away." Signed and Seal of arms, broken.
1571, October 28.—A certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that about 10 years past "one mother Margery," who then dwelt in the Almshouse of Rye, was for certain notorious offences "such as any Christian harte wold abhore to here spoken of much less to be used," driven out of the said town. She being suspected of witchcraft, the then Mayor caused the said almshouse to be searched, and there was found amongst other things "a good quantitie of rawe beff" to the intent that as that beef decayed so the bodies of divers persons against whom she bore malice should also decay. Which things were proved, for one among her victims "being by her wytchcraft most cruelly tormented in his body at last hanged himself." Since her banishment the town had not been troubled with the like.
"Where it hathe byn complayned unto us on the parte of Joane Wilkinson, sometyme dwelling in your towne of Rye, that one Peter Greeneway of Hythe in the diccese of Canterbury hath not only contracted hymsealf in matrimony with the same Joane but also verie ungodlie hath mysused hir bodie and therby gotten hir with child. Upon which complaynt the said Peter, being convented before us, and the matter objected unto him, denyed the same. Wheruppon the said Joane being present alleaged that there were divers credible witnesses resiant within the towne of Rye or nere theraboutes that can depose of the same contract. Wherfor in consideration of justice and pitie herin wee desire you, that, upon notice gyven by the said Joane, you wold call before you, with as convenient sped as you may, such persones as she pretendeth to be hir wytnesses in this behalf, and them examyne concerning the said pretended contract." Signed.
"According to your lettres datid the 28th day of October 1571 we have with our minister Mr. Philpot (for that the Lord Bushope was not nere unto us) made serch and inquirye thorough our Towne of such strangers as are resiant within the same, according to the tenor of the same letters. The true certificate whereof we send your honors herein closid. And as yet [we] se no cause but the same persons may have continuance (if it so stand with your honors' pleasures). As towchinge their armore it is but small and shall from tyme to tyme be looked unto and considerid of, as apperteyneth." Draft.
Those who have dwelt long before March last in Rye and "are of very honest behaviour."
Christopher Falloyse, his wife and servant, with two or three children; Ambrose Demoye and his wife; Cornelize Soyer, his wife and servant; John Mercer, a widower, and his servant; all Walloons and merchants; Bonaventure Dusseville and his wife, a bookbinder.
Frenchmen "of honest conversation inhabiting before March last."
Guillamme Boucheret, merchant, his wife and servant; Alain Henri, merchant; Claude de Hue and his wife; Piere Sommellier, clockmaker, and his wife; Jan de Torchy, merchant; Nicholas le Tellier, minister, his wife and servant; Jan le Febure and his wife; Jan de le Croix, merchant, and his wife.
Those who remain in Rye and have lived there before March last, "but of no churche that is knowen all of good and honest conversation so far as is yet understandid."
John Frottier, locksmith, and his wife; John Swayne, cooper, (fn. 1) and his wife; Peter Blocket, Frenchman, and his wife; Frauncis Cauchie, his wife and mother; Jaques Oucktell and his wife; John Matue, a Flemynge, his wife and certaine children; Robert Castell, his wife and four children.
[With the foregoing are several rough slips of paper containing information, in some cases apparently returned by the strangers themselves, from which the foregoing seems to have been compiled. A few examples follow showing the peculiarity of spelling, &c.]
1571, December 3.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye, that whereas it seems by relation of Ambrose Demoye of Rye, merchant, that Hector Joly, Pierre Brisse and Jehan Prevost, merchants of Rouen, lately had some wines taken by freebooters, and that Francis Delobell of Rouen, merchant factor, authorised by the aforesaid merchants of Rouen, had written his letters to the said Ambrose Demoy authorising him to deal with the freebooters for the wine; the said Ambrose has brought before the said Mayor and Jurats honest and discreet merchants, that is to say, Gillam Ackman, Lewis Sohire, Johan Dewilliam, and Hance Hanson all merchants commorant in Rye, who have sworn that the said letters sent to the said Ambrose are the true handwriting of Francis Delobell.
"Forasmuche as Robert Goodwyn, an Englishman borne, and naturallyzed a denizen in France ys stayd with yow for some evydent injury by hym don agynst Mr. James Morlye of Ledes, in goodes laden by John Boothe, servant to the said Mr. Morley, in the porthes beyond the sea to the value of a thousand fyve hundryth poundes. And bycause thyre ys a maryne cause growing in foreyn porthes beyond the sea by reason wherof yow cannot do justyce to the porthes in your common court, but of necessyty justyce ys to be done in the Court of Admyralty. Therefor for due admynistering of justyce you must without delaye uppon attachment of the said Goodwyn by an offycer of the Castel of Dovor, delyver hym to be conveyed thyther ther to remayn tyll the cause shall be so answeryd and determined of thereby. For your instruction, that this by law and justyce ought to be don and no prejudyce to your fraunchyze or liberty."
"Wheras in the absence of the Lord Warden of the Cinque Portes commission is given to Sir Henry Crispe, Sir Thomas Scott, knightes, William Crispe, Lieutenant of the Castle of Dover and to Edward Bois, esquire, or to any two of them for the repressinge and ponisshinge of pyrates, rovers and such as dysordercdlie go to the seas, their aiders, receptors and mainteyners; and also for the better maintenaunce of justice and the ponishment of wrong-doers, as the cases shall require, uppon the coast, from tyme to tyme, as in their commission and instructions to the same more lardglie apereth. For so much as occasion shall oughten tymes require your aide and assistances for the better apprehension of offenders and otherwise to the execution of justice with more expedition; we have thought mete to require you that when motion shall be made unto you in such cases by them, that you further them and their directions in that parte to the best of your powers. Wherin as our meaninge is not to infrindge any liberties or privileges, so we doubt not but that you and all good subjectes do thinke yt convenient that every man should geve the best helpe he maie to the furtheraunce of justice, which beinge so much required at your handes, we doubte not of your conformitie therin accordinglie." Copy.
Enclosing letters from Serjeant Manwood which had been received from Hastings without any advice either from there or Winchelsea "which we suppose was for that they would first understand the myndes of the rest of the Portes or els for that they so playnely understod not the lettres, being Mr. Manhode's oune hand, (fn. 2) with which all are not acquaynted." Draft.
"Wheras for the spedie reformation of theis great disorders and unchristian depredations daylie frequented uppon this her Majestys coastes, there hathe bene of late a commission grauntid from her Highnes unto Benjamin Gonson and William Holstocke, Esquires, with certaine instructions signed and delivered unto them by the Lordes of her honorable Councell, the copies wherof I send unto you by this bearer, hereunto annexed, for the better testimonie of the same; and also the copies of the Lords of her Counsells letters addressed unto Sir Henry Crispe and others for the further procedinge in the same, togethers with certaine instructions by them geven unto you to be followed and observed, with letters also addressed unto you frome theire honors for theire assistaunce in the same, thes are therefore in her Majesty's name requiringe you and by the authoritie of your Lord Warden's office commandinge you and every of you, to whome on this case it shall apperteyne, (perusing the said severall commissions and takinge notice of the same) to take copies of the said severall instructions and letters addressed unto you, and to proced therin and in every pointe therof accordinge to the true meaninge of the same." Copy.
"Wheras the Quenes Majesty, upon sundry grevous complaintes exhibited by divarse marchantes, as well strangers traffiqueinge into this Realme as by her owne naturall subjectes, of the great and continuall piracies and spoiles committed uppon their shippes and merchandizes by pirattes and rovers on the seas, caused first straight order and commandment to be given and published as well by her Highnes severall proclamations as by letters addressed frome us to all her Majesty's officers and ministers to whome it mought in anywise belong, not only to forbeare to ayde, assiste or releave any of the sayd pyratts or rovers with any manner of victualls, munition or other necessaries, but also to geve ordre and expresse charge that neyther any the sayd
pyrattes, rovers, or men of warre, or any of their companye shold be admitted to come into any of her Majesty's portes, nor yet any of her Majesty's subjects permitted to bargaine or batter with them or buy anie of their goodes or wares that shold be by any of them taken or spoiled. And sithens that tyme, nowe of late uppon further complainte made, her Majestie fyndinge that notwithstandinge the former orders and proclamations, the said pyrattes and rovers wher dailie received into sondry portes of this realm, and speciallye within some of the Fyve Portes within the Countie of Kent, and releaved with all necessaries, ye and lodged openlie in the houses of some officers that ought to have bene rather the punishers of them, moost graciously regardinge the due execution of justice for spedie and exact reformation to be had in the premisses, did addresse speciall commission unto Benjamyne Gunstone, esquire, Treasurer of the Admiraltie and to William Holdstocke, esquire, Comptroller of her Majesty's Navi, to repaire unto the sea coastes of the realme in that county of Kent, and there, accordinge to certaine instructions deliverid unto them for that purpose, to apprehende and committe to safe custodie as well the persons of as many the said pyrattes and rovers as mought anywise be founde in any port of this realme as their shippes with their goodes wares and merchandizes that should be found in any of them. And in leike manner to commit to safe warde all such of her Majesty's subjectes of what degree or condition soever they were, either officers or others, that shold be founde either to have bought or trafiqued with any of the sayd pyrates or anywaies to have releaved or assisted them contrary to her Majesty's former proclamation and orders in that behalf, as by the said commission and instructions dated the third of October last (the true coppie wherof we understand some of you have had delivered unto you) more plainely maye appere. For so much as uppon the reporte of the said commissioners declaringe their procedinges in the premisses we find great towardnes of reformation of the enormities aforesaid, if the tenor and purpose of the said commission and instructions may be continued and dailie put in execution, we have thought mete, seeinge the Lord Cobham beinge the Lorde Warden of the Five Portes is nowe here so, stayed by her Majesty's commandment, as he is not presentlie to be imploied in this service, to require you Sir Henry Crips as your age and helth may suffer and you Mr. William Crips that are Lieutenant under my Lord Cobham at Dover, and you Sir Thomas Scotte and you Edward Boyes as persons of whome we have very good opinion, usinge herein, as cause shall seme requisite, the service of the Mayors of Dover and Sandwich that you fouer three or two of you takinge notice of the said commission and instructions apointed to Mr. Gunstone and Mr. Holdstocke do use your uttermost indevors in all places within the Fyve Portes to put all the necessary pointes of the same spedilie in due execution frome tyme to tyme as occasion serveth and shall inquire, in as ample manner as they themselves mought have done by vertue of the same, and so we do in her Majesty's name fully aucthorize you by theis our letters. And further that you take order that all shippes and goodes belonginge to anye the said pirattes or rovers that shall come into any the Quenes Majesty's havens may be stayed and inventories therof to be made and the merchandizes to remayne
in safe kepinge by your apointment in the handes of suche persons as may be answerable for the same. And if any claime shalbe made to any parte therof within reasonable tyme by the subjectes of the Frenche Kinge, the Esterlinges, the Grave of Embden or eny others with whome her Majesty hath amitie and libertie of entercorse, and do spedelye without delaye prove their right therunto lawfull by the due course of the lawes in such cases used, that you do then take order that they and every such maye have restitution accordinglye, and that which shall not be in reasonable tyme challenged as above is said, ye may leve to them that brought the same into the havens with order that they departe awaye with the same assone as they maye. And whereas the said Gunstone and Holdstocke, by vertue of their commission, have committed to prison in Dover fyftie fyve persons, and in Sandwich fowerskore the same remayninge at great charges, we have thought convenient that by your discretions a choise shold be made of tenne out of them of Dover and 15 of them at Sandwich of the best that you shall thinke mete to be kept, and the rest by your good skille to be sent out of the realme as they may accompt themselves discharged by favor, and not suffered to retorne. And even as in this service ther is a speciall choise made of you for the greate regarde that her Highness hath to the execution of justice and to the repressinge of theis evills that have so long continued to her Majesty's great discontentation, so is there no one point that you ought to be more carefull of nor to thinke yourselfes more charged with, than that you diligently foresee by provident order that no persons may victuall any of the frebutters nor buy anythinge of them, but the offenders in such cases without respect of persons may be apprehended and imprisoned without baile or mayne prise till you shall have precise commandment frome us to the contrary. And whereas we send you herewith coppy of an inventory taken by the said Commissioners of suche goodes as uppon serche made was founde at Dover, supposed to be had frome the freebutters, amongest which there was in Courtnei's shipe of Dover and now laden into a hoye called the Whit Cocke of Dover 22 lastes of tarr, three dryefittes of tallowe, thre packes with flax and one hundred of lose flax in bondelles, reported to be kept to the use of Thomas Cobham and Francis Barties, for as much as both they, for offence against her Majesty, are at this present imprisoned, it is meit that of those parcelles specially you do make staye of, to her Majesty's use. And we shall very well like also that you make perticuler inquiry of all the doinges of Thomas Cobham in these his dealinges with the freebutters or eny others of their conditions, specially touchinge the raunsominge of a Flemyng that to escape the frebutters did swime frome a shipe in Dover Rode to the towne, and what you shall finde in that behalf donne by him to advertice us with as good spede as you maye. And without respect of faviour towardes him of whome we heare so many complaintes for his misbehavior as we cannot passe the same over without this manner of inquisition. And lastly beinge willing with this our desier of redress to understand in whose part slackness hath bene used in this case, contrary to her Majesty's good intention, we do require you to advertise us what hath bene donne in the Commission that was latelie
sent downe this sommer under her Majesty's great seale for the enquirye of theis causes, and to enforme us to whos handes it came and wher it presently remayneth." Copy.
Enclosure II.—1571[–2], February 12.—"Instructions geven to all Maiors, Balives, and Jurates of the Five Portes and their members by Sir Henrie Crispe and Sir Thomas Scott, knyghtes, William Crispe and Edward Boyce, Esquiers, as followeth."
"First, that you the said Maiors, Balives, and Jurates shall, upon the sight herof, presentlie see delivered out of this realme all such prisoners of the freebutters as wer committed unto your safe custodies (if any such there be) by verteu of the former Commission directed unto Mr. Gonson and Mr. Holstocke, not to retorne.
Item, that you shall foresee, as much as in you lyeth, that no person or persons of your townes or liberties do buy, sell or batter with any of the said frebutters, pyrates, rovers or men of warre, nor shall in anywise suffer them to have any kinde of victuall frome your said towne or liberties.
Item, if it shall happen by fowle wether or otherwise that any of the shippes or botes of the said frebutters, rovers or men of warre do come within your havens or harboroughes, that then you shall staye the said shippes and botes with the goodes they shall have aborde and their men untill such tyme as you shall make us, the said Sir Henry Crispe, Sir Thomas Scotte, William Crispe and Edward Boyce or two of us acquainted therewith.
Item, if it shall happen anie within your said townes and liberties do buye, sell, batter or victuall anie of the said frebutters or men of warre, that then you shall committ them so offending to prison, there to remaine without baile or maine prise untill you have certified us the said Commissioners or two oquoline.
Item, that no man within the said townes or liberties shall go aborde the said freebutters, rovers or men of warre without a speciall licence or ticket from you the said Maior, Balives or Jurates or two of you.
Item, that wheras the former Commission directed to Mr. Gonson and Mr. Holstocke and the instructions for the same hath not hetherto bene executed within your liberties, you, the said Maiors, Bailives and Jurates takinge copies of that instructions, shall make enquire therof accordinge to the tenor of the same.
Item, of your procedinges in these instructions as also in the instructions geven unto Mr. Gonson and Mr. Holstocke (wherin we are aucthorized by vertue of the Counsels letters to us directid), you shall certifie us, the said Commissioners, or two of us, frome tyme to tyme as ofte as occasion shall serve therunto.
Item, what you or any of you of yourselves know or by the reporte of others justly to be proved to be donne (contrary to theis our orders and instructions geven unto you) within your townes or liberties sence the first daie of the date of our Commission directed unto us, you shall indelayedlye certifie us of the same." Copy.
"Theis are to signifie unto you that the 15th of this instant moneth of Februarye, we received from you under the seale of office from Dover Castle the coppies of the commission with the instructions to the same [annexed] graunted from the Quenis Majestie to Mr. Gonson and Mr. Holstocke, esquires, and also the coppies of the Lords of the Councel's letters addressed unto Sir Henry Crispe and others with certaine instructions of new unto us made, and the Councel's letters concerning the same, all towchinge to the reformation of the abuses donne upon the seies by pyrates, rovers and suche as dysorderedly go to the seis, and also to make staie of suche frebutters, rovers and men of warre with their shipes and boates as shall happen to come within our liberties, as the same commission, letters and instructions more plainely do declare. By verteu wherof, sithens the receipt of the premisses, that is to saie this present daye and date hereof, we have within our liberties at Ry made staye of one Hendrike Thomas, his levetenant, his boate and company, being to the nomber of six persons in the whole, and also have stayed one Capitaine Davy and his company which are aland, being foure persons, whos boate with the rest rydeth at anker in the Puddle within the liberties of Winchelsey and have thought good to advertise your worshipes of the same, sending you hereinclosed the aucthoritie that the said Hendrike Thomas goeth to the sey withall, prayinge to be certified backe againe what we shall farther do herein. And that we may understand who shall be said disorderedly to goo to the seies and who not, and whom we may lett passe and who nott. As for goods and marchandize they have none nether have made sale of any within our liberties, to our knowledges." Draft.
By virtue of Her Majesty's commission to us directed, we will and require you to certify us in writing, within ten days, what goods, wares, merchandises, ready money, ships or other vessels belonging to any subjects of the King of Spain have been arrested or stayed in your port since the third day of January, 4 Elizabeth, how the same have been disposed, and also to let us know of such as you know or vehemently suspect to have concealed such goods. Signed.
"I have received your letter perceiving therbic that you have made stay of two flie botes the one apperteininge to one Henrike Thomas, the other to Capteine Davie, whom (for that they brought in no prizes with them nor yet other goodes, and beinge forced to com in for safe garde of lyfe, not havinge comitted anie facte wherwith thei are to be charged) you may suffer to departe without any further staye for they themselves are not to be deteined, but suche prises or goodes which thay shall bringe into your harboroughes untyll profe shalbe made to whome it shall apperteine, and yf it do not apperteine unto anie with whome the Quenes Majestie hath amitie and free libertie of entercorse, then it is to be delivered to them ageine and they presentlie to departe with it and not to make sale within your port or liberties, onlesse they have anoyed anie of her frendes, alies and subjectes; of whome specially you ought to make staye and to certifie us that restitution made accordinge to her Highnes pleasure." Signed.
"We are frome time to time informid of the great disordres and spoiles made by a certen flote of shippes pretendinge to serve the Prince of Orrange in those our narrow seas and specially uppon the coste of Kent, and the spoiles and prices are brought comonly into that our Porte of Dovor and there solde derectly against our commaundementes expressed by severall proclamacions and to the slander of that towne. Besides this we also perceive that the Conty de la Marq, who also pretendith to have aucthority over that flote, doth lodge in that our towne of Dover, to whome alsoe a multytude of them which serve in that flote doe resort otherwise then in any former tyme hath bene used in that towne beinge a principall porte and as an eie of our realme. All which considered we will and charge you forthwith to geve knowledge to the said County de la Marque that allthough at his beinge with us, uppon his request, we were content to graunt unto him our pasport to passe out of our realme with certeyne armour belonginge to himselfe, yet we never ment that he should contynew in that towne and principall porte to make the same a place of assemblie for all his companie to resorte to him; nether have we herd frome the Prince of Orrange of anie speciall requeste made for that purpose, but contrarywise of late we have bene advertised by our Ambassador out of Fraunce frome the County Ledovick, brother to the said Prince, that the meaninge of the said Prince is not that either the said County de la Marque, or anie other pretendinge to serve the said Prince, should, in such sorte as they doe, haunte our narrow seas or lye in any of our portes to the offence of any our subjects or the subjects of any our friends. Wherefore ye shall commaund him to geve order that the flote may departe frome our sea coast, and that both himselfe and his traine doe departe oute out of that towne and porte of Dovor. And if he shall refuse so to doe, you shall first use some perswasions in respect of the generall complaintes made of all merchants havinge cause to passe and repasse the seas by that coast, and specially for that yt was never seane nor suffered that any straungers of any nation hath bene suffred to continue in that towne but for passage only. And if such reasons shall not move him for to yeald to departe, you shall then lette him understand that you may not suffer him nor any of his to remain there. And to that ende we would have yow consider how yow maye, if he will persist wilfully to continue, remove him thence by barring him victuells or otherwise as yourselves shall thinke best, usinge therin all directe meanes rather then force untill yow may here further frome us or our Counsell.
We will you, the Liuetenant of the Castell of Dovor, to send to the Mayor of Sandwich and all other officers of the Portes to use the same order for excludinge thes manner of people. And suerly if they shall not, you may well assure them without respect to their liberties they clayme, we will inquire of thes contemptes and negligences in usinge our commaundements and sease our liberties into our hands." Copy.
"Where it hath pleased the Quenes Majestie to addresse her Highnes commission to us and others to examyn what goodes, debts shippes, money, or other thinges were, and are nowe, arrested in anie of the King of Spaynes domynions belonging, to anie of her Highnes subjects to the end that satisfaction maye be made to them of suche goodes, wares, marchaundises, money, debtes, and other thinges belonging to anie of the said King of Spayn's subjects as have bin arested in any her Highnes domynions. We have therefore thought good to signifie the same to you and withall to requiere you to geve notice thereof to all suche dwelling within your libertie as shall have any juste cause to make demaunde for any goodes, wares, or marchaundises staied, as is aforesaid, and that they doe make theire repaire to us, the said commissioners, with all conveynyent spede at the Guildhall in London where we mynde to sitt everie Saterdaie and Mondaie for that purpose." Signed.
"Whereas this present daye the date hereof we have received from the Livetenaunte of Dover Castle the Quenis Majesties letters for the avoydinge from the Portes the flete of shipes of thos which pretend to serve the Prince of Orrenge on the Narrowe Seies, it may please your honours to be advertised that we have callid suche persons before us, which wee thought to be of that fleete remayninge in our Towne, very late thether dryven by impietosatie (sic) of wether, their ships lyinge in the Camber, and have used towardes them for their departure accordinge to the foresaid letters, who very humbly have desired us fyrst to signifie unto your honours their licences which they have (as they saie) absolutely frome the Prince of Orenge, before their departure. And forasmuch as the Quenis Majesties said letters do concerne suche as pretend the service of the Prince of Orenge to this offence of hir Graces subjectes or subjects of eny other hir Highnes friendes and theis persones, alledginge their lawfull aucthoritie as they terme it, we thought good with as muche convenient speede as might be, fyrst to signifie unto your honours their licences by this messenger and so to staie as concerninge thos persons till your farther pleasures be therin knowen. As touchinge the Conty de la Marque and thos knowen of his company we meane in nowise towardes them other then hir Majesties letters do require and the leike to thes persons had ben donne if their said humble petition had not benne." Draft.
1571[–2], March 10.—A declaration by John Philpot, Preacher of the word of God, that on the nineth of the said month of March going to supper with one Anthony Coxe in Rye, it happened that "one George Sere of the same towne called him into his house where one Thomas Wilkin, a mariner of Lie in Essex, tooke him, the said John Philpot, aside into a wyndow and signified that he had matter of importance which he would make relation of, which was that beinge of late with his barke at St. Mallowes in Brytanie to loade certaine goodes hee did perfaitly understand that a certaine nobleman of Scotland named the Lord Flemynge did ly and staie in the said towne of St. Mallows for aide of certaine shipes to be passed into Schotland by the meane of the Guyes; and affermid moreover that being in the company of a Scotishe man in the said towne of St. Mallowes, who was of the retynew of the said Lord Flemynge, that the Scotishe man uttered very presumptuously many trayterous wordes against the state of this realme of England, affirminge that it was pity that the Duke did not bring to passe that hee had taken in hand. And that even [if] yt were longe, the quarrell of the Duke should be avenged, and that it shuld never be well till the boy of Scotland shuld hold both the Realmes of England and Scotland.
"Whereas by this berrer, Edmond Gest, we understand that one William Simpson of Yorkshire is steyed with you upon some suspeckte, and remayneth till advertisement of his honesty and behavior, theis are to signifie unto you for trothe that the same William Simpson of late departid from Ry about the fyveth of this moneth with some suche person as perswaded him of some gainfull bargaine, now fallen out to his trouble, he beinge taken emongest his acquaintance at Ry to be a very honest man and of substance, as well the same doth appeare for that at his departure he left his waires, beinge clothe, in divers honest men's hands in Ry, who are debtors unto him for it till his retorne; and while he was here at Ry lodged in the house of one Thomas Simpson, an honest housholder, where he also lefte certaine of his clothe being northen dosens." Draft.
1571[–2], March 16.—The Mayors, Bailiffs and Jurates of the Five Ports to Dr. Lewes and others, the Commissioners appointed for the receipt of certificates of such goods, as have been stayed, pertaining to the subjects of the King of Spain.
We have received your letters. "The effecte of which your letters as with all our hartes we are redy and willing to accomplish if they came orderly. So are we to request your worshipes to be advertised that without breach of our liberties we may not make retorne of the same, excepte they were fyrst directed to our Lord Warden, and so frome his honours office unto us by letters of attendance. For as by our charters we are not to appere afore eny Commissioners out of our liberties, so are we not to make certificate or retorne of eny matter comyng from eny Comyssioner without the same be by order sent to our Lord Warden, and so frome him to us, as is aforesaid." Draft.
"We have received lettres addressed unto us from certain Commyssioners appointed concerning the staye of certen shipps, wares, goodes and merchandizes which were stayed here by the restreynt ever sythence the thirde daye of January in the eleaventh yeare of her Majesties reigne, whereof they will us to make certyfficate. The which, for that they come not orderly by lettre of attendaunce (according to auncient custome), we thought yt our dutie, before answer made, to signefie the same unto your Lordship, for that we do take yt to be bothe prejudyciall unto your Lordshipps office, as also infringement to our lyberties and charters, wherein we crave your Lordshippes favorable assistance and furtherance in answeringe the same. For bycause we were very lothe to certefie anythinge either hurtful to your Lordshipps office or imparement of our liberties, what we have don herein pleaseth your honor to have conference with the bringers hereof, they can more fully certefie your Lordship." Draft.
1571[–2], March 20.—Depositions of Gerdte Gormers of Haunborugh [Hamburg], master of the hulk called the Fortune of Hamborugh. The deponent says that being at Burwaye in France he took into the said hulk 75 packs of white paper. As this deponent was passing through the seas he met with an English ship called the Hull the master of which ordered him "in the Quenes Majesties name of England" to lower his sails which he did. The men of the Hull then came aboard this deponent's ship and took away his best anchor, cut his cables asunder and took also ten whole packs of the said paper, spoiled two other packs and then departed.
"Leonard Dirrickson de Swariawale by the Brille was taken by the frebutters with a fisherboate, the 29th of Marche laste, being in his fyshing boate with fyve or six men right against the Maese [Meuse], and kepte him to ransom his boate and his men at 100 crownes, and his boate and his men be sent home for that monye, for which the capitaine of the said frebutters hath a bond of the said Dirrickson to paie at Dover."
Clause Lyneson of Ciricksey [Zirikzee] in Zealand "saieth that on Tuesdaye, the 25th of Marche laste, a certain hoye being bound with marchandize frome Emden to London, came aborde the fyshing boate of the said Clause before the Mase beinge afyshinge, in which hoye were a company of passengers beinge frebutters to the nomber of 30 persons, sodenly lepte into his boate and then the hoye departed to London. When theis frebutters had taken this said Clauses boate they afterwardes tooke another fysher boate of Ciricksey, which is the boate that nowe is come into Rye, and sent the said Clauses boate and his men home, savinge himself and one of his men, which they kepte. The master's name of the boate nowe come into Rye is Cornelis Jobson of Ciricksey with his foure men."
"On Thursday laste beinge the third of this instant in thafter none, there came into Rye Creke a fysher boate of the burden of 20 tonnes or theraboutes, in which were eight fyshermen in their fyshing apparell and thirtie other persones termed frebutters. Wheruppon we caused the boate to be serchid and founde nothinge but only suche weapons as they had for their owne defence, for uppon examynation of the fyshermen it apperid that the said frebutters (or passengers as they tooke them) came in a hoye frome Emden which was bownd to London with marchandize and by the waye againste the Mase [Meuse], the 25th of Marche laste, bordid a little fysher boate and came all into that boate, and then the hoye departid on hir voyage; the next daye followinge they bordid another fysher boate nere the same place and tooke out the master and one man of the first boate, and sent the same boate and the resideu of the men home. The 29th of Marche they bordid another fysher boate and tooke out the master and sent the boate and the rest of the men home, and in all this tyme did not hurte or ill intreate any of them as the fyshermen themselves declare. The boate and fyshermen are of Ciricksey in Zeland, beinge of sondry companies of whome we have sufferid some to departe home beinge only servantes and the resideu with their boate we reteyne, till your honors pleasures be herin knowen.
The frebutters say that they are licencid by the Prince of Orenge whos licences we send herinclosed and the captaine remaynith at Rye being sicke and weke with six or sevin of his company, for at their arrivall they had nether bredd nor drinke nor had eny in seven or eight daies before. The rest to avoid charges are departid. It is the first time that they have ben in England as they saie and knewe nothinge of the orders late taken towchinge suche persones." Draft
1572, April 10, Ashford.—A certificate made by Thomas Pett and others touching the "mysdemanor of the two abusers of the Divyne gefte of God in Medicene, callinge themselves by the name of Tomlens the elder and the younger, the father and the sonne."
"The 15 day of December laste paste the elder Tomlyn came to Asheforde, and toke his yn at the bayliffes house and their spreede his banners and sett up his billes with declarations that he cowlde do wonders, and allurede many people, beinge market day. But when the market was done Master Pett, vicar of Asheforde, and Thomas Quydler had hym in examination and founde hym farre unable and unmete to practise physicke and chirurgery or any parte or parcell thereof; notwithstandinge he had so many billes and testimonyes of other places, and especially a licens geven by the ordenary to practise his arte of cuttinge, in the Dioces of Canterbury, wherby we, so abused for that tyme, lett him goo quyetly untill we had some prove of hym and his doinge by the detryment of dyvers of our neighbors, but first we reproved hym and forbade hym the admynystration of a certayne purgation wherwith his sonne dangerede many. Notwithstandinge our charge to the contrarye, the 3rd day of Marche laste, the said Alexander Tomlyn gave two purgations, the one to Mary Lawrance which was servant to William Paduall, bailiffe, the other to one Edward Ponett, and purged them both that they dyede shortelye after. And, to be shorte, for the most parte all they that he mynystrede unto in eny case are likewise dangerede of liffe. Also betwen thes two they had a woman suspected of whordome and laide in the stocks by the constable."
"Where wee are credibly informed that one Robert Jacson of Ry hath of late offendid and transgressed contrary to the Quenis Majesties orders and proclamations of late sett forth in all her townes and portes uppon the sea costes of Kent, Sussex, Hampshire and the west parts of her Hignes coasts of England, for victualinge or making eny kynde of traffique with the frebutters or rovers. For the ponishing and reformynge of all such offenders hir Majestie haith aucthorised us George Wynter and John Hawkins, Esquires, by hir Highness commission under hir Great Seale of England. Wherfore we require you Anthony Godderd to apprehend the said Robert Jacson and him salfly to convey and bringe to London before us and if he shall make eny resistance, or shall refuse to obey your arrest, then you shall require thassistance of the Maior of Ry or of eny other the Quenis Majesties officers in Ry or elswhere within hir Highnes realme whersoever, and so to commit him to the next gaole or prison." Copy.
"Although the Commission sent from you by Anthony Godderd, this bearer, were mistaken and your precepte or mandation to him directed, for thapprehending of Robert Jacson comith unorderly, for that none of our freemen or inhabitantes for eny cause is by writ, precept or mandation frome eny Commissioners to be apprehended or attached, but that fyrst the same to be directed to our Lord Warden or his Deputie, and so to us by letter of attendance frome Dover Castle, yet we have takin this order that the same Robert Jacson shalbe with your Worships at London, or elswhere, on Fryday next, and as towchinge the word mensioned in your instructions gevin to the said Anthony Godderd wee will (nowe knowing the same) do our indevors for the staie thereof if it may come to our view about which this said berer staied at the writinge hereof, and can uppon his retorne informe you further therein by word of mouthe." Draft.
"In primis, that it wold please them, this parliament, to have conference with the residewe of the barons of the portes and also with the burgeseis of Yermouth and Knights of the Shires where are fysher townes, and for the drawinge of a bill to be exhibited this Parliament for the mayntenance of the fishermen of this realme, and avoydinge of strangers fyshermen and also for the avoydinge of the fyshe brought into this realme by the Quenis subjects beinge caught on the seies by strangers.
Item, when our merchants goo to Hamborough and Emden they beynge there ladinge with fishe, a hundred tonnes, six skore tonnes and upwardes, which is no small quantitie, the utterance whereof is the decay of the utterance of our fyshermens fishe all alongest the sea coaste.
So that the Quenis subjectes furnishinge themselves with Flemish fyshe, Scottishe fyshe, and Frenche fyshe, the fishermen of England are fayne to lay up their boats and seke other trades, wheras if this strange fyshe were abolished, they shuld be able in small tyme to trade the seis as in tymes past they have donne, and aswell to furnish the Quenis subjects as the stranger, and as good peneworthes; besides the byrnninge upe of a greate nomber of mariners which now are utterly decayed.
Item, divers of our Englishe men with their crones and ketches, generally and contynually do trade the coast of Flaunders and Callice, where, with their redy mony they not only buy of the ketches of that partes, strangers playce, coddes and all such kinde of fresh fyshe as thoes strange ketches take, and so bringe it into the Realme to the utter decaye of our fyshermen which bringe upe yougth to plye the takinge of fish themselves, beinge fourteene, fifteene or sixteene men and a boye or two in a boate beinge noe small nomber in our lyttle towne as Ry is, when they had utterance for their fishe, but also they the said Englishe ketches frome tyme to tyme convey awaye a number of redy monye with the buyinge of fyshe of thoes strangers ketches."
"This 4th of May we received your lettres of the first of the same, perceyving therby that the murtherer is apprehendid which murderid Arthur Halle. Wheruppon we have clerly released the messenger beinge at some libertie before, but not fully dischargid. Longe before the receypte of your said lettres, viz: the last day of Aprill last past we caused 12 men to be sworne super visum corporis, &c., who thoroughly viewing the body of the murdered person have presented thus in effecte: That John Julians of Ry, in the County of Sussex, mariner, brought a dry pipe frome London in which, the 29th of Aprill the 14th yere of the raigne of our Soveraigne Lady Quene Elizabeth, about tenne of the clocke in the night, a deade body of a man, unto them unknowen, was founde, but by the testymony of the messenger sent by John Branch the Shireff of London, the body of one Arthure Hall of London, marchant. Which said body of the said man, to them unknowen, had these woundes following, viz: on the head three woundes of little depthe but rather brused, his throte cutt, and thrust into the lefte side with a dager or gret kniff: the wound so depe that they felt no bottom therof, his lefte legge cut asonder by the kne underneth and honge by the skynne. The murderer they knowe not but by reporte, one Martin Bullock. Which view so taken the body was, the Fryday the second of May in the forenone, being put in a coffin, buried in one of the chauncels of the church of Ry. Thus have we procedid herin as we thought meete." Draft.
"Beinge informed that some captaines in the Cittie of London, or neare aboute the same, have lately mustered soldiers and putt them in armore uppon entent, as it is reportid, to transport them over the seas. Forsomuch as the Quenes Majestie doth utterly mislike that any captaines or soldiers should in such sorte goo over without her speciall licence, theis are to require you, and straightly to charge you, that if any such matter be attemptid neare about you or under your rule that you use all meanes and dilligence that you cann, not only to staie all such entreprises to proceade in any muster, but also that you suffer none to pass in such sorte over at any porte under your charge. And if you shall find any person being the Quenes Majesty's subjecte that shall attempt the one or the other you shall make staie of all such untill you have enformed us and shall theruppon receyve further direction in that behalf." Copy.
"By auncient usage and custome tyme out of mynd contynued two browhulds or brotherrelds generall, by the wisdome and pollicie of our predecessors, barons of the five portes, were provided and ordaynid yerely to be holden at the Towne and Porte of Newe Romney, wherof one the Twesday next after the Feast [of] St. Margeret for the presentation of our Bailles chosen to be at the Towne of Great Yermouth in the tyme of the faier there. Which brotherild at this tyme apperteynith to us to areare. Wherfore we pray you all Maiors and Baillies of the Five Portes and members that every of you, with two or thre of your discreat combarons, to be at the said Towne and Porte of Newe Romney the said daie above named at eight of the clocke of the said daie in the forenonne, electid, aucthorizet and returnid under your common seales there and then to here and to have relation of the good sped and governaunce of our Baillies aforesaid, and further of all other matters and causes nedfull and profitable for the universall wealth of our franchieses, usages, and customes."
1572, June.—Proclamation by John Donynge Mayor of Rye, and the Jurats and Commonalty of the same Town that "whereas emongest other the auncient customes of the sayd town of Ry it is conteynid that in case any man or woman dy within the sayd fraunches of Ry, and their heirs be within age, then the Maior shall have the viewe of the child and all his landes, rentes, and tenements and of all his movable goodes and by the Maior and Jurats the child shalbe put unto warde to the next kinsman, that the child hathe of his blood, unto whome the sayd inheritaunce may not discend, and all his goods and cattals shalbe deliverid unto the said gardian by Indenture made betwene the said Maior and the said gardian until the tyme the child be of full age; and the one parte of the said Indenture shall remayn in the comon Treasory. And in case there be none of the childs' blodd, then the Maior shall take and deliver the said goodes and cattals unto some sufficient man of the fraunchies, in kepinge, until the tyme that the child be come to his full age at which tyme the child shall have them deliverid unto his use. And wheras Augustynne Swetinge, late of Ry aforesaid, inholder, havinge foure children, that is to saie, Thomas, Harry, Susan and Brydget all within age, unto whome he gave by his last Will and Testament the some of threskore poundes of lawfull money of England, that is to saie, unto Thomas, 20l., unto Harry, 20l., unto Susan, 10l., and unto Brydget 10l., and made Margaret his wiff executrix of his said last Will and Testament, and so died, who takinge upon her the charge of the same by hir last Will and Testament did geve unto the said Thomas, Harry and Brydget also hir children the some of Thirty poundes, thre christeninge shetes and a Turky ringe, that is to say, unto Thomas 10l. and a christeninge shete, unto Harry 10l. and a christeninge shete, and to Brydget 10l. and a christeninge shete and a Turky ringe, to the foreseid Susan a bedsted, a fetherbed, a single coverlet of dornex, a blanket and a bolster. And of the same hir last Will and Testament ordaynid and made William Fawconer hir executor, and so died. After whoes death the said William Fawconer took uppon him the execution of the said last Will and Testament of the said Margaret, all the foresaid children being within age. Know ye, that we the said Mayor and Jurats, for that the said children and every of them at this present are within age, aswell by vertue of the foresaid auncient custome as also accordinge to our auncient usages tyme out of mynd in the like cases used, have taken into our handes and the daie and date hereof have received of the foresaid William Fawconer of all foresaid legaces of mony and goodes to the use of the children aforesaid the same to use, order and dispose accordinge to our said auncient custome and usages, and of the same mony and goodes by theis presents do clerly acquite and discharge the said William Fawconer, his executors and administrators."
1572, July 5.—Inquisition taken before John Baily, deputy of John Donninge, Mayor of the town of Rye and Coroner of the Lady the Queen within the same town. The jury say that William Johnson feloniously killed and murdered John Crosbowe outside the east gate of the said town, in the Queen's highway there. Latin. Seals attached.
In consideration of this unseasonable weather, a token of God's great displeasure, threatening no small miseries and calamities to fall upon us, and that for our loose life and neglecting to do our duties as we ought to serve God, that on Monday next and every Monday till it please God to stay this unseasonable weather, the people and inhabitants of this town of all ages and sorts diligently repair to the Church both to call upon God by prayer and also for hearing his word both forenoon and afternoon, at such time as the bell shall be tolled.
And for the better continuance of the people in godly fervency and prayer it is ordered that a general holy and solemn fast be kept by all sorts from sixteen to sixty years (sick folk and labourers in the harvest being excepted) who are wished only to content themselves that day with bread and drink, that they may be the more apt to prayer.
"For as much as it is apparent that many have since the universall murders violently committed in Paris and other partes of France, fledd unto this realme and do yet continue to save their lives as the verie law of God and nature doth require, of whome alsoe common and christian charitie ought to move us to have compassion, yet we thinke also verie convenient to have certaine knowledge frome tyme to tyme what numbers and what sortes of persones they are that do come unto the realme uppon this occasion, and to foresee that under pretence thereof no other sorte of daungerous persons do transporte themselves. And therefore we require you to give some present order to all the portes and landinge places within that County that good regarde be hadd and speciall observation kept and regester made what persons do arrive and their names, there qualities and there occasions as they shall alledge of their comming, and to what places they do determyne to repaire further into the realme, and frome tyme to tyme, that is, every foretene daies or oftener if the numbers do encrease, advertisement to be sent to us and therof we earnestly requier you to take some care and to signifie to us your opinions of their arrivall if you find any cause to doubte thereof." Copy.
"The names of such persons as be chosen and aucthorised to take charge for the serch of all suche as shall passe in or out at any of the Portes and Crekes underwrytten."
1572[–3], March.—Bond by which Francis Maquery, together with Marten Cauchie, his wife, stands to keep an award of Francis Mercher, Ambrose de Moye, Robert de la Place and William Butcher, merchants of Rye, touching a suit pending between the said Francis Maquery and Francis Cauchie and Massela le Creux, his wife.
The Lord Warden having written to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye to have a hundred "Caliverers" at Dover to be in garrison during her Majesty's abode. It is granted that there shall go a hundred calivers, besides "the ensigns drume, phife and vj holberds."
1573, September 8.—Safe conduct granted by the Mayor of Rye to Vincent Henry, Frenchman, who had been at Rye for six months "a cause des troubles de France," to go with his ship, pinnace, and crew to Holland, and from thence to Rochelle.
It is ordered that Mr. Gaymer, Mr. Cobbe, Mr. Tolken, William Ratcliff, John Jacson and John Fagge, chamberlain, shall ride to the Lord Warden and carry the 200li. with them which was received of the merchant of France; and what these persons shall do and consent to therein, the Mayor, Jurats and Commons will hold themselves content therewith.
"Yesterday at our Court hall we assembled our commons to have their consents for an order betwene your Lordship and us to be had concerning the 200li. we received of the marchante's gifte; the case being suche as without the commons consentes we might not deale. Whereuppon three of our Jurates were chosen to resort forthwith unto your Honor as well for and concerninge that money as also for discharge of the men of warre here staied by your Lordship's commandment, for that by an order taken in the towne all suche persons are to departe within a certaine tyme which draweth to ende, diverse being alredy departid, and a grete manye staying uppon theis men to goo with them to Rochell. After which our assemblie, lettres came to our handes, very late in the evening, from the Lordes of her Majesties Councill willinge us to receive all suche somes of mony of Henry Gaymer as were by him receyvid of the Frenche marchant as it were by way of ransome and the same forthwith to send to Her Majestys principall Secretary. So this morninge we have again called together our commoners and again imparted unto them the effect of the same lettres, who suerly are much grevid at the same considering the great charge they have of late benne at frankely and of mere goodwill and now to be subjecte to an extreame cease as well for the levyinge of the said 200li. being alredy by the consent of the Maior, Jurates and Commons had frome the said Henry Gaymer and dispersid emongest a nombre of poore men for their labors about the townes business, saving 30li. as also to have forthwith almost the leike some for to be bestowed about the water workes of the towne, which not beinge donne our Landgate will shortly awaye and not to be made againe for 1000li.; also havinge lost by reason of callinge our men frome their worke to prepare for her Majesty's comynge, a stone wall by force of the sea which was made for defence of the same gate that stood us in seven score poundes and yet more must out of hand be bestowed to defend it this winter, which wilbe no small charge, besides our keeis and wharffes which may not be forflowen. Theis thinges wilbe very burdenous to our commons which we wold to God your Lordship did as well knowe as we doe, and are leike to feele. And nowe to departe frome that mony beinge so frely geven doth kill the hartes of them clene. In consideration whereof we most humblie beseche your Honor to stand our good Lorde and that with your favor and good will we may enjoye that mony without eny further troble; and if your Lordship will nedes have it then must we crave of your Honor some staie for levyinge it by way of cease, as we are determined, havinge of purpose sent theis berres [bearers] to have conference with your Lordship about the same for in you it lieth to staie all." Draft.
, September 23.—Certificate by Mayor of Rye (John Donninge) to the "Bayley of the town of Diep and others assistaunte to hym in justice" that "wheras our neighbours William Ferrall and Thomas Ferrall of Rye are by you staied and kept in prison, and chieflie as we understand on the reporte of some of your towne to you that shold affirme and saie these our neighbors to be rovers, pyrattes and maynteyners of theves. And forasmuch as it is not only the parte of every good christian to testifye the truthe of his knowledge in matters doubtfull being therunto required, but also a charitable dede, and for that yt is necessary that eche person be reported of as his deserts doth justly require. Know ye that we, the said Maior and Jurattes together with the consent of all other our neighbours whos names be here undersubscribed, at the requests of our honest neighbours Alice Ferrall and Johan Ferrall the wyves of those our neighbours William Ferrall and Thomas [Ferrall] do signyfie and declare to you for truth, that the said William Ferrall and Thomas Ferrall hath dwelled in our said town of Ry by the space of 30 years togethers during all which tyme they or either of them have bene of good name, fame and honest conversation, not knowne, reputed or taken for eny suche kinde of notorious cryme or lewde demeanour as aforesaid is surmised or alleged against them or either of them."
"Whereas we have received your Honor's letters of the 13th of this instant by which your Honor's requier us forthwith uppon the receipte thereof to send up by some assured persone suche some and somes of money as Henry Gaymer, our late Maior, received of a merchaunt of Diep as yt were for his raunsome, the same to remaine in deposit and sequestracion in the handes of her Majesty's Principall Secretary. It may please your good Lordships to be advertised that the said merchaunt did frankely and freely of his mere goodwill give unto our towne the some of 200li. for and in consideration of the curtezie he found at our handes in aydiog hym to save hys goodes which Comyssary and Corba had taken from hym and not for his raunsome, which said merchaunt paied the same unto the sayd Henry Gaymer, then Maior, unto the use of the towne, who sithens the election of the newe Maior, which was within sixe dayes after the receate thereof, according to our orders hath delyvered it over unto us to the use of the sayd towne; and which sayd 200li. is disbursed emongest dyvers persons to whome the towne was indebit and not to be had according to your Honors requests without assesse to be made emongest us, which will be grevious unto our inhabitantes considering their late charges they have bene at and yet are lyke to be about certen workes spedily to be done for defence of the sea from our towne, having alredy lost one pece of worke when her Majestie was at Rye which cost us 140li. and yet must be made againe. In consideration whereof we most humblie beseche your Honors to stand our Lords, that with your favors and good wills we may enjoye that pece of money which the said merchant so frely hath given unto us." Draft.
1573, October 2.—Indenture between Richard Bushop of Rye, master and owner of the ship Mary Thomas of the burden of 70 tons, and Robert Farley and Cornellis Sohier of Rye, merchants, concerning voyages of the said ship to Rochelle and elsewhere. Draft.
"May it please your Honor that one Cornelys Sohier offereth to passe at Ry, by vertu of this licence which I send your Honor herein closed, one hundrethe barrells of candells and hathe bought uppe here at Rye all the candells within the towne that were to be had; and further causeth Frenchmen to make candells for him in covert places of the towne wherby he doth cause great want of candells. So yt is right honorable that I have caused the candells to be stayed in the shoppes wher they now bee untill your Honors pleasure be therin knowen and have sent this messenger of purpose and the rather for that the hole towne doth take offence by the sayd Cornelys, doon against them for the sayd candells as knowith God."
"Whereas certen goodes late belonginge to myne old frend Mr. Thomas Byrchett, decessyd, a jurat of your town, and after hys death belonginge to his wydow and sonne Thomas, executors of hys testament, and by hyr death belonginge to Thomas Byrchett the son, the survyving executor, now for her quyet and contentation permytted to . . . . . . . with hyr, and sythens hyr death (for good concorde to be had bytwen the three sonnes) wherin I travayled, were lefte in sauff custody within the late dwellinghouse of the sayd Byrchett's wydowe and ellswher, in right now belonging to Thomas Byrchett the survyving executor. And wheras Peter Byrchett, the myddell son, for hys just desert and offence ys atteynted of felony and murder, least by pretence therof, he (notwithstanding the truthe of the case) shuld perchance intermeddyll with any of the sayd goodes as belongs to hym, wheras in truthe they dyd not belong to hym. Therfore to prevent injury to be attemptyd, I have adreysed the said Thomas Byrchett, the survyving executor, to come down to you and shewe the testament of hys sayd father; and that in your presence an inventory shalbe made of the goodes ther within your town remayning, wherin the two younger sonnes have had any entermedlyng. And after inventory taken the same to remayn in sauffe custody where they be, without removing of any part therof or of any evydences or wrytyngs. And hereafter when you, or any of your counsyll, will take tyme to examyne and shew what ryght to any parte of the sayd goodes can be claymed . . . . . that shallbe don, whiche by your own counsyll, shallbe allowyd of, in right and equyty. Thus advysing you herin to use a diskrete order consonant to right and quyet according to justyce I doe take my leave."
"Wheras there hath bene some stryffe betwene your Lord Warden and you, which matters as I heare are drawne to some articles or pointes. Wheruppon ther may, uppon good consideration, some resolution of paccyfycation, growe, which cannot well be without suche conference together of yourselves in assembly at a gestlinge as in the like you have used, and althought I neyther knowe the greffes nor yet of any side have byn procurid or insyniated (sic) in this matter more then some frome Hithe delivered unto me, yet I thought it convenient as one that for your yerelie fee ought to respect your doeinges to wishe you to assemble together and theruppon to consulte, that seeinge all thinges must have an end, the sonner yt is in hand the sonner you shall rypp your owne quitnes with hym that is your hedd and maie stand you in all your sutes and doeinges, havinge his favor, in gret stedd, otherwise such poore sutes as some of your townes have or anie of yourselves maie have, cannot well by any sute to his Lordship be urgid to be furthered. Thus leving the consideration thereof to yourselves as one that both doth honor hym and well wisheth unto you all, I trust you will take this my wrytinge in good parte."
"Our neighbour Robert Jacson the 24th daie of this instant month of November and not before, hath received into his howse for his provicion towardes the victulinge of this towne, out of a bot of Chichester callid the Elizabeth of Chichester, wherof Richard Laurens is master, 54 quarters of wheat and twenty quarters of malt which he ladid at Chichester; by virtue of license from the Right Honorable the Lord High Treasurer of England unto you only, in that behalf he standeth bounden unto yow [and we] for the returning of our certificates in that behalf accordingly." Draft.
"We have received your lettres makinge mension of a coppy of a booke come to your handes beinge sett downe by Mr. Justice Manwood as it is thought, the which your lettres by us considered of, we cannot but well leike of your motion therin conteyned, havinge also received, as we take it, the leike coppie. And as there are divers thinges in that coppie not wholly to be misleiked of, for that they tend to a Godly purpose which is for a quietnes to be had betwene our Lord Warden and us, so are there divers thinges not fully to be leiked of, as they are pennid for that they are partly against our charters and customes and the statutes of the realme, as we yet conceyve of them, wherefore we thinke it not amys that a gestlinge be had at Romney in tyme convenient so as it be after Christmas if so longe it maye staye, otherwise at your discretions for appointment of the daye backe againe by your lettres by this bearer; at which tyme for our partes we will, God willing, be redy to attend." Draft.
"Where my servant Robert Jacson is arested in yower Cowert of Estrangers or comonley cawled a Cowrt of Pyepowders att the sewt of Mr. Sheperd, his landlord, for the rent supposed by his leaze to be dewe emonge other thinges of and for the marshes lately surrownded wyche, by her Majesties specyall commandement and by the lettres of the Lordes of her Highnes Pryvey Counsell, owght so to remayne, I am for some causes me movinge to requyer you thatt the sayd sewte maye stey and lykewyse thatt he may have lawfull favor in other his causes wyche ys no other requyred then may stand with the rules of justyce wyche as itt is reasonable, so have I thereof no misdowght." Signed. Seal of arms.
"Whereas by your letter of late, by us from yow receyvid you request certeyne of us to be at the Gestlinge holden at Romney the Tuesday the 15th of this instant moneth of December and to come aucthorised under common seale, we intend, God willinge, to be then there accordingly. And the boke which we receyvid from you concerninge the articles drawen by Mr. Justice Manwood you shall receyve agayne by this bearer."
The facts of the case are as follows:—Shepherde brought his action of debt against Jacson to recover a year's rent of 50li. for a "brewehouse, a wind mille and certaine mershelande in St. Mary mershe"—30li. from the brewhouse and mill and 20li for the marsh. Sheperde "required a Court for Strangers" which they could not deny for their custom is that if one be a stranger and the other a freeman or indweller, the Court shall be kept from day to day forenoon and afternoon, yet they granted Jacson three delays, though the like was never done before, so that Jacson has no just cause to think amiss of any person herein. They hope therefore the Lord Warden will see that he has no cause of complaint. They add that Jane Bennet an impotent widow has an action against Jacson for 15li. for rent. Another person had recovered upwards of 19li. against him by the verdict of a jury; these and other matters they have staid for the present hoping it will pleasure him and he in the mean while [will] take some reasonable order. Draft.
1573, December 28.—Certificate by [the Deputy of the Mayor, and the Jurats of Rye] that "whereas a certaine hoye of Hollond, whereof is master John Johnson of Targo in Hollond aforesaid, laden at Roterdam with 25 laste [of] herringes to be transported unto Roan in Normandy and by the waye had taken out of the said hoye at Floshinge fyve laste of the said herringes, and afterwardes by tempest of weather was dryven on land at Shoreham with twenty last of the said herringes. Theis are to signifie unto you that the daie and yere underwritten came before us, the said Depute and Juratts, Elizabeth Wolters of Rye, widowe, Anne Martin, the wiff of Bawdewin Martin, and Catherine Cornelison, the wiff of Allin Cornelison of Ry, marchantes, who accordinge to the order emongest them used, have procurations to deale in their husbandes affaires in their absences, which said Elizabeth, Anne and Catherine beinge sworne uppon the Holy Evangests do severally affirme for truthe, that the said herringes in the foresaid hoye cast on land at Shoreham or thereabouts is the proper goods of Hance Hanson of Ry marchant and of the said Elizabeth Wolters, widow, and of the foresaid Bawdwin Martin and Allin Cornelison foure parteners, and not perteyninge nor belonginge to eny other person. And farther the said Elizabeth Wolters for herself and the said Anne and Catherin do by vertue of the procurations which they have frome their said husbands for and in the behalf of their said husbands, in the presence of us the said Maior and Jurates, geve their full power aucthoritie to the foresaid Hance Hanson, the said herringes, and every parcell of them, as well to the use of them the said Elizabeth Wolter, widowe, Bawdwin Martin and Allin Cornelison as to his owne use beinge one of the parteners, to sell, lade againe, merchandize and proffit of them to make, as to his discretion shall seme good, promisinge to hold as fyrme, and thereof to allow all and whatsoever the said Hance Hanson shall do or procure to be donne about the said herringes."
"We have received your lettres wherin you write to understand the cause of the imprysonment with us at Rye of a boye who is the sonne of one Mary, the husband (sic) of one Nicholas Duplis. Know you that we likewise desire to be certefied from your Honor the cause wherfore William Verroll and Thomas Verroll breatheren (men of honest behaviour and life) are deteyned so long tyme, for none or very small cause, prisoners with you at Deape then shall we accordinglie answer your requeste. In the meantime we pray you to do good intreatment unto our neighbors abovesaid. And as for the boy or eny other, you shall command us to doo that justice requireth." Draft.
"Whereas we have dyvers and sondry tymes writen unto you for our poore neighbour William Ferrall who is deteynid in prison and maie not be releassed without payment of 60 crowns having already spent all that he hath. We well perceive that the more we write the lesse our letters be regardid and the poor man more cruellie handled. Theis are therefore to advertise you that accordinglie as our said neighbour is delt withall, we meane to deale with the boie which is here in pryson and forthwith to send hym to our castell; for more hurt then is don to our neighbour cannot well be, excepte you take his lyfe from hym. Wherefore deale as therein you please, for we meane to write no more in the cause." Draft.
[1573.]—Petition by William Fyrrall of Rye, mariner, addressed to the Lord Warden, setting out that "in the moneth of August last past, duringe the tyme of hir Majesties beinge at Ry, your said servant had his barke taken and freighted for the Lord Ambassador of England to transporte his gelding frome Ry aforesaid unto Deipe and had in his barke as a passenger one Thomas Grene of Winchilsey, marchante, who by the waye uppon the sea entreated your Honor's said servant to borde a certaine vessel there beinge, which was a frebutter or suche leike person to your said servant then unknown, of whome the said Thomas Grene bought or otherwise compounded for fyve barrels of whit herringes and them ladid into the barke of your Honor's said servant, affyrming that which he did was lawfull and honest, for which he your Honor's said servant shuld incurr no danger, who beinge a simple plaine man gave credit onto the sainges of the said Thomas Grene. So it is, right honorable, that presently after the arrivinge of your Lordship's said servant with his barke at Deipe, the owner of the said herringes seinge his marke upon the barrels made challenge unto them, and caused the barke of your said servant to be ceased and himself comittid unto prison, layinge unto his charge that he had pyratically robbed him of his ship laden with herringes to the valewe of foure hundred poundes sterlinge and upwardes; wheruppon the said Thomas Grene conveyed himselfe away and came over into England and your said poore servant was kept in streight prison somtyme in the dongeon and somtyme more at large laden with irons by the space of sixtene weeks before eny end or agreement could be had with the owner of the said herringes; duringe which tyme your said servant was dryven to such extreme charge that or he could be fully discharged, it cost him foure hundred crownes of the somme besydes the losse of his tyme the greiff of his poore wiff and family, havinge had hetherto no recompence of the said Thomas Grene for the same, he beinge the only cause of all his trouble and charge to the utter undoinge of your Honor's said poore servant, his said poore wiff and family if some remedy by your Lordships meanes be not had. In consideration whereof, may it please your Honor for Godsake and in waye of equitie, to wryte your favorable letters unto the Maior and Jurats of Ry that whensoever the said Thomas Grene shall happen to come within their liberties, that they will cause him to be attached and by their order cause him to make recompence unto your said poore servant for his damage and losse which he hath susteyned." Draft.
Asking his opinion on the pleadings in suit between Francis Maquery and Francis Cauchy and apologizing for not before remitting the yearly fee due to him which however, God willing, shall be duly paid. Draft.
1573[–4], January 9.—"At St. Stevins my house neere Caunterbury." Opinion by Roger Manwood concerning a dispute between the Town of Rye and the children of Peter Byrchett, as to the goods of the said Peter claimed by the town as catalla felonum by reason of attainder. The document concludes:—"Thus moche for the satysfyinge of the towne concerninge theyr right. That nothinge maye be unlaufullye attempted nor to move dyscorde, unquyett or unkyndenes to be betwene the Towne and the twoo survyvinge sonnes; bycause theyr father and mother were my ould assured freendes whyles they lyved and the Towne also my freendes." Signed.
1573[–4], January 16. An order that Philipe Fairefeld and Angell Shawe, for their pains taken this summer with the "drome and phife" when the Queen's Majesty was here, shall have 40s., a livery a piece, and from henceforth 40s. a year, besides the benevolences of the Commons for their going abroad in the winter nights with their drum and fife for the watches.
"Being at Ry, I find the want of corne to be no lesse than was reported unto us at Wyston, and daily the lacke encreasith by reason that no releife comyth. If they perishe for famyne it cannot be answered, the nombre of people of this towne is greate, the hole realme is relived with fish from hence; it is a part of the County of Sussex scituate barenly for corne and hath alwaies had their provision out of your rape and seking nowher els have barganid for it there. The victalers have alredy laid out their stock of money uppon yt and have no newe to supplie to bye yt elswhere, I pray you most hartelie to have consideration of them. It is a towne of defense, bordering uppon the sea; the people are generally forwardes in all good services, and greate pytie it were to suffer them to wante. And ye may assure yourselves that their is a very precise order kept by Mr. Maior and the Juratts that no corne which is brought hyther ys caried to any other place, but all ys spent here without any conveyeinge. I wryte this unto you of my owne knowledge and therefore doe eftstones most hartelie desire you to license them to transporte it."
[1573–4, after February 28.]—Certificate by John Doninge, Mayor of Rye, that "forasmuche as it is a charitable thinge to testyfie the truth in matters doubtfull, and that eche parte be knowne according as he justlie deservith, and wheras Richard Crofte of Brenfort in the County of Middlesex, bocher, is suspected to have lead his life lewdlie, by reason it is to many unknown wher he late inhabited. Theis are therefore to certifie you for truth that the said Richard Crofte came to Ry aforesaid to the house of Nicholas Purvage of the same towne, inholder, with whome he is acquainted, without any company, the 18th daie of October last past where he inhabited and dwellt untill the last daie of February then next foloweing, during all which tyme he remaynid within the towne and used himself honestlie and uprightlie, so far as ever we could perceive or knowe."
1573[–4], February.—Order by the Mayor, Jurats and Commons of Rye "that wheras the common passengers before this daie hath contrary to the commandement gevin unto them generally, that they nor any of them shuld bringe or cause to be brought any manner of person or persons whosoever, onles they be marchantes, gents, common postes, or messengers and suche leike, of any the Frenche or Flemishe nation, which commandment so gevin the said common passengers have lyttle regarded or sett by, but have brought over great nombres of the Frenche, being very poore people, both men, wemen and children to the great crye and greiff of the inhabitantes of Ry and other places about the same. In consideration whereof, to the end the same may be restrayned from comynge hether, it is ordered that from henceforth no common passenger of the town or fisherman which shall fortune to come from Diepe or any of the parts from beyond the seas, as well out of the partes of France or Flaunders as any other place, shall bringe nor suffer to be put on land any of the Frenche or Flemishe nation here (except merchants and the others before excepted) to contynue or dwell upon pain of 40s."
1573[–4], March 23.—Safe conduct for Harmon Tyse (?) master of a ship called Lesperans of Rye with 11 mariners and 2 boys, to pass with a cargo of salt belonging to Baldwin Martin, of Rye, merchant, to "Dannske [Dantzic] in Polland" and to return to Rye.
[1573–4, March.]—Certificate by John Doninge, Mayor of Rye, that Thomas Carr of Rye aforesaid, tailor—"who is suspected to have killed a deer in the Lord Montagues park at Battell on the 19th of the instant moneth of Marche"—is confined to his house by illness. Draft.
1574, April 10.—Safe conduct granted by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye to Lawrence Langlois, mariner, master of a ship of Rye called the Hound of which Thomas Bennard of Rye is owner "together with nineteen maryners in the said ship, all of the religion and French church, at this instant within the towne of Ry, beinge of good name, fame and honest conversation," to sail from Rye to "Noarwage" and from thence to Rochelle with merchandize and so to return again. Also similar safe conduct to the same persons in the same ship, with the same crew to sail from Rye to "Dannske [Dantzic] in Poland" and to return again.
1574, April 22.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye "that about the 24th daie of the moneth of Marche laste paste, arivid here in the harbor called the Puddle nere unto the said towne of Ry, from a place called the Porte [Oporto] in Portugale a certaine barke of the burden of 40 tonnes or theiraboutes called the Seigneur de Porte laden with orringes and mannid with six men and two boyes, the master named Gonsal Alvus, the pylat Autan Pyz, Antonyo Maio and Alvare Aves, two of the auncient mariners. Which said barke of Portugale lyinge theire in open roode, a certain man of warre of Floshinge, came and roode at anker harde unto hir, wherof the Portugales stoode in doubte as of their ennemye, which being well perceivid of the inhabitantes of Ry, certaine of them went abord the said Portuigall barke to helpe fetche her into the creke of Ry, being a dry harbor, for hir farther saftie being very faier wether, which said barke so brought into the said creke and ground, the common place of ladinge and unladinge, she was so weake that hir sides and seames did open in suche sorte as they were constreynid by the space of two daies and two nightes to kepe the pompes, but all prevailed not, for at the laste the said barke sonke and the orringes in hir laden for the moost parte wet with salt water and swimmith in the bottom of the said barke loose, and thoes which were saved dry beinge about the nombre of fiftie thousand besides a fewe that were sold were laden out of the said Portuigall barke into another small vessell to be transported to London, and by the way was taken on the sea by men of Floshinge and so carried into Flaunders. So as in the ende the said Portuigalls lost not only all their ladinge of orringes (excepte a few which they have sold here at Ry for their victualls) but also theire barke in such weake state as she is not able to go eny more to the seas, nether is of any valewe otherwise then to be pulled in pieces."
1574, May 10.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that they had committed the ship called the Seigneur de Porte (as her master and company had left her "myndyng not to deale or meddle with the same") to the keeping of Thomas Edolf one of "our combarons" of Rye who ("for that the said barke lay wholy uppon spoile, beinge of no valewe other then to pull a sonder to the fyer,") by sowndes of drum according to the custom of the town, sold her. The bare hull and masts realised 3l. 16s. sterling, and her boat with the oars, 15s. sterling. The sum realised by the tackle with "a mayne saile, a foresaile, a myssen saile and one topsaile, two ankers, one cable of hempe and two other of basse, together with 44 hundred of brassell and other small implements" is not given. The money so realised is to be handed over by Thomas Edolf to the person or persons who can show proper title thereto. Draft.
1574, May 11.—Order by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that none of the inhabitants of Rye neither young nor old shall in the morning any day assay out of the town, with drums, flags or otherwise, into the woods of any man to gather or cut down any "bowes" without licence of the owners.
1574, May 17.—Safe conduct granted by Henry Gaymer, Deputy of the Mayor of Rye, to "Jaques Piochean, master and owner of a shipe called Lesperance apperteyninge to the towne of Olderon [Oleron] in the County of Poytu, within the realme of Fraunce, of the burden of three score tonnes or theraboutes with sixtene marryners and twenty passengers, Frenchmen, in the same shipe," to sail from Rye aforesaid directly unto the town of Rochell within the said realme of France.
1574, May 18.—Safe conduct granted by Henry Gaymer, Deputy to the Mayor of Rye, to Marten Havard, master and owner of the Goesoftlie of Rye of the burden of 12 tons, with "foure marryners and twelve passingers, Frenchmen, in the said boate" to sail from Rye to "Saint Mallowes within the realme of Fraunce ther to sett on land his said passingers." Draft.
1574, May 21.—Safe conduct granted by Henry Gaymer, deputy of John Donning Mayor of Rye, to Robert Commissary, mariner of Rye, master of the ship Bonaventure, to convey twenty-five passengers Frenchmen to the "Bay of Hog [la Hogue] within the realme of Fraunce" and then return to Rye. Draft.
Inprimis, cariages for the ordinaunce in Gonne Gardin accordinge to the note taken by the worshipfull Master William Crispe, Liveteuante of Dover Castle, and Mr. — Partridge Esquires, Commissioners appointid for view of the same.
|Item, calivers furnished||50|
|Item, serpentine powder||2 laste|
|Item, corne powder||2 barres."|
"Yester eveninge being the 6th of this present monythe a certen person, to us unbeknowne, delyverid unto the handes of one of the Jurats of Rye a subpena directed oute of the Kinges Benche unto me, John Dunninge, Mayor of Rye, and three other of the Jurates named in the same wryte, personally to appere in the Kinges Benche on Frydaye next to answer to suche thinges as then and there shalbe objected agaynst us. And the lyke wrytes were also delivered to other of the Jurates for there lyke appearance. In which severall wrytes are included the Mayor and all the Jurates. The messenger assone as he had delyvered the wrytes departed and could not be found to be talked withall. And forasmuche as this kynde of dealinge is not only very strange but also contrary to our lybertes and charters, we have thoughte it good to imparte the same unto your Worshipps, requyring herein your brotherly councells and advyce and allso your ayde and helpe if nede requyer. For yf we should appere, yt were contrary to our lybertes, and yf we no not appere we shall . . . . in contempte. Wherfore your councelles and ayde herin, together with your severall answers we requyre to be sent by this bearer."
"We have receaved and perused your lettres of the 7th of June. And as the matter seameth strange to you so doth it to us. And whereas you wryte for our councell herin, surely we thincke that it shalbe best to be well advysed howe you do apeare, and whereto; and that you have good councell and lerned herein least the same shold torne to the infringing of our liberties; and for that we are fullye resolved that you will deale circumspectly herein as it is nedefull, we for our partes will not only be ayding to you wherein we may, but also be contrybutory to suche charges as you shall chaunce to expende in the defence of our liberties according to charter and our auncyent customs."
"In that for the matter betwene your neighbours Mercer of Ry and Tench of Sandwich by my medyation endid, I ment that eche prysoner (being at equall pryces for raunsome) shold by eche party be sett at liberty. And nowe fynding that there is much difference betwene the charges of the one and the charges of the other, I have therefore thought good thus farr to explaine myne order that I will see the true and reasonable proportion of the charges of your Ry prisoner and the like of the Sandwich prysoner, and then to make such an equall dyvident as in reason and equity shall be mete and consonant to my true intent and meaning."
1574, June 18. Paris.—Letter from "Valentine Dale, Doctor of Lawe and Ambassador resident for the Queenes Majestie with the Frenche Kinge" addressed "to all Maiors, Sheriffs, Baylifes, Constables and all other the Quenes Majesties Officers" granting a safe conduct to "Francesco Giuliano, Francini Florentine and Imperia his wyfe, Thomas de Nicolao Florentine, Vincentio Siciliano, Francesco Brandini, Giacomo Gatamomole (?) and his wyfe, Barnardino Cherubini of Cremona, Donato da Lece Marcantonia of Ancona and Golpino da Talliccio and his servaunt with their pistolles and haquebuses to the nomber of 9" in order that they may repair to the Court about their private affairs.
1574, June 19.—Safe conduct granted by Henry Gaymer, deputy to John Donning, Mayor of Rye, for William Machon, owner of the bark Lesperance with 20 mariners and 20 passengers to pass from Rye to Rochelle to land her passengers and return to Rye.
1574, June 29.—Certificate by Henry Gaymer, deputy of John Donninge Mayor of Rye, that on the above date "there came before him John Shoven, of Diepe marriner, master of a ship called the Will of God of Diep of the burden of 60 tons or thereaboutes, and stated on oath that on the 6th of May last he sailed from St Lucas in Spaine freightid with oyles and olives belonging to Robert Colman of Amyas in Fraunce, and Oliver Fisher, citizen and ironmonger of London; and that on the 6th of June, nere St. Vallereis upon the coast of France" he was taken "by a French barke called the Bonaventure, whereof one John Mesenguet was master, and of which barke Nicholas Degraung and Robert Comissary are owners. Which said ship of the said John Shovan and the said goodes and merchandize so by the said John Mesenguet and his company taken, were by them brought nere to the town of Ry aforesaid where the said shipe with the said goodes and merchandize laie at an anker in the sea by the space of 6 daies gretlie to the spoile of the said merchandize. And further the said John Shovan saith that in the tyme of their lieng at anker as aforesaid, by a composition and agreement by hym made, in the name of the said Robert Colman with the said John Mesenguet, the said shipe, goodes and merchandize, was released and were brought into the harbour of Ry, where not only the said ship, but also the goodes and merchandize as aforesaid in the same, had been without great help cast awaie." Draft.
1574, July 17.—At the "Redd Lyon" in Rye. Memorandum of agreement touching "the controversie betwene the hundred of Gestlynge and Gostrore concernynge the watche at Farelyght beacones in the said hundred of Gestlynge, by the frendlye medyation of Master Sheperde, and soe thus yt was agreed, videlicet; that the said hundred of Gostrowe shall, from St. Jeames Day nexte, alwayes, towardes the watche of the said beacones, whensoever eny watche there shalbe commaunded and kept, yeld and paye to the hundred of Gestlynge every third night 10d. and so after that rate duringe all and singuler tymes of watchinge there. For the testymonye of the which agreement the seales of eche hundred interchangeably shalbe fixed unto a wryttynge indented thereof to be made before Mychelmas next comynge. Provyded alwayes, that the payment of the said 10d. every third nyght and so after the same rate, shall cease and be voide whensoever any severall and distinct beacones and beacon watche or beacone watches shalbe commanded by warrant from the Lord Levetenant, Hight Commissioners or Justices of Peace of the said shire, commanded to be kept within eche and every of the said hundreds. Provyded also, that the said hundred of Gestlyng shall not require nor have any further contribution or ayde towardes the said watchinge at the said beacones at Farelyght out of the said hundred of Gostrowe, notwithstandinge that any tyme hereafter there shalbe watchinge at the see syde or at any other place within the said hundred of Gestlynge."
1574, July 28.—Depositions of George Sandon that "about St. James was twelvemonth" the deponent being taken a prisoner at Dieppe, at which time there were some Englishmen put into the dungeon there and being desirous to know who those prisoners were, and the cause of their straight imprisonment, he requested the keeper that he might go and see them or else they might be brought up to him; the keeper at length consented if the deponent would pay his "foye" according to the custom of the said prison, to which he agreed, and so the three prisoners were brought to this deponent and they all made merry at dinner in the said prison, and the said three prisoners said in the presence of William Verrall of Rye also a prisoner that one Greane of Winchelsea bought five barrells of herrings out of a pirate for which herrings they were now put in prison, and the said Verrall requested him to take note of their words.
1574, August 22.—Safe conduct to Nicholas de Graunge, owner of the bark Lesperance, whereof Cautin Parrys is master together with Nicholas Gollet, John Busher, Michael Raymes, Ezechiell Emery, John Vincent, Arkus Bawdwyn and Anthony Churling, mariners in the said bark, all of the French church within the town of Rye, to sail to Daniske [Dantzic] and Kingsbury [Konigsberg] in casual trade of merchandise and return to Rye.
1574, September 13.—Depositions of John Torsey and Nicholas Chantereau, merchants, taken before William Davy, Mayor of Rye and others. They say that "wheras Robin de Gardeine of St. Valeries was indebted to Monsieur Richard Merret in the some of 50li. sterling or theraboutes and was in the custody of the said Torsey and not to departe from his company, yt happenid on a tyme that he was absent an houre and a half, wheruppon the said Torsey misleiked of him that he wold departe. And the said Torsey came to the said Merret and gave hym warnyng of the said Robin de Gardin to loke unto hym. Wheruppon the said Merret was mynded to put the said de Gardin in prison, wheruppon Jacques de Vymew de Abvile entreated the said Merret that he wold not put the said Robin Degardin in prison and he wold be bound for hym both his body, his shipe and goodes that the said Robin de Gardin shuld not goe awaie; but if he did go awaie he wold answere for hym by his body, shipe and goodes. Hereuppon the said Merrett did permitt the said de Gardin to goe at large."
1574, October 6.—The Mayor of Rye [to the Lord Warden]. As to actions in a court for strangers, between Richard Mere and Jaques de Vimew; and between Jaques Beliart and Jaques Vimew. [A certificate in the same suits, in which the parties are described as of the French Church.] Draft.
"And where ther hath bene both of long tyme and of late certain controversies and unquiet questions betwene your combarons and baylifes, deputed for you on the one parte, and us and our predecessors, governors of this towne of the other parte, for and concerning our and your jurisdiction and aucthoritye here in Great Yermouth duringe the tyme of the fre faier; and although (God be thanked) there hath not of late growne any great unquietnes hereof, yet to the intent that the Quens Majesties service on both our partes in this behalfe maie be the better performed, and that this litle sparke of unquietnes betwene us maie be utterly extinguyshid and quenched and that firme and unfayned amytie maie be in place hereof established and confirmid amongest us, we the Baylifes of this towne for the tyme being with the consent of our brethren and assistance therein doth both and instantlie and hartelie beseche your Worship that at the nexte Easter terme it wold like you, by your absolute and irrevocable commission, to geve aucthority to such persones as you shall pleas, and we for our parte will make the like commission, that both our commissioners, then metinge maie either emongest themselves or els by indifferent namynge of compotent arbitrators then make a resolute discussing and ende of all controversies and questions betwene your jurisdiction and ours towching the said free faier."
1574, October.—Correspondence between the Mayor and Jurats of Rye and William Crispe, Lieutenant of Dover Castle, and others as to the enforcement of the orders set out by royal proclamation against the transportation of horses, mares or geldings.
"May it pleas your good Lordship to be advertised that not only we but also the contry rounde aboute us is in great want of salt, and, except some foresight be therein had, in tyme it will be farre worse. And for that divers tymes vessels of salt is brought to the Nesse and thereaboutes which we dare not meddle with by reason of the late commandment to the contrary, and from tyme to tyme is bargayned for and had to other places; we thought good not only to signifie the same unto your Honor but therewithall to desire your Lordship's favor that when any such thinge shall happen to come that bargayninge for the same and entringe to paye her Majesty's custome, if eny complaint shall happen to be made to your Lordship therof you will stand our frend therin." Draft.
[1573–1574. The Mayor of Rye to —.]—Relative to obligations by which the town's combaron Daniel Mynge is bound to M. Pottell and Madam Helayne, both of Dieppe. Refers to Mynge's wife, Anne Rybaulte, and to payments made by the said Mynge to one M. Duboys, surety for Pottell and Helayne, of, amongst other sums, "a rose noble," and "a Frenche croune."
"That where certaine lewd and malicious persons, voyde of all feare of God, only sporting and delighting themselves in ungraciousnes, have practised of late within this towne, not only by knocking at mennes dores under pretence to speak with them to beraye with filthe and oeduer suche as come unto the dore, but alsoe accustome to affixe upon diverse men's dores certeine infamous libells and skrolls containing dishonest reproche of the persons upon whose dores they are affixed, to the great offence of Almightie God and to the great disturbance and disquietnes of the quiet state and peace of this towne; Mr. Maior therfore and his brethern having a carefull regard to avoyd cause of suche ill sequels as might enssue without reformation of the premisses, doo therefore straightlie charge and command in hir Majesties name all manner of persons whatsoever inhabiting within this towne or otherwise, to abstain henceforth from such lewde malicious and ungracious disorder upon paine that every freeman duelie condemned of the same to be disfraunchised for ever of the liberties of the said towne, without hope of the recoverie of the same, and every one not being free to be streightlie and severelie punished to the exxample of others according to the discrecion of Mr. Maior and his brethern." Draft.
[1574.]—Declaration by Pierre Rogers stating that "wheras Nicholas Russell, Capitaine of a shipe called Lesperance, aucthorised under the County Mongomery, to make warre for the cause of religion, aboute the 22nd daye of Maye laste paste did release unto the foresaid Peire Rogers, a barke of Newhaven in Fraunce called the Nicholas laden with 12 last 8 barrels and a half of codefishe, which he the foresaid Captaine had taken uppon the seies and compounded with the said Peire Rogers for the releacement of the same, Know ye that I, the said Peire Rogers, for divers considerations me movinge have bargayned and sold and by theis presents do fully and clerly bargaine sell and releace unto William Didsbury of the auncient towne of Ry, marchant, the foresaid barke with hir furniture, taccle and apparrell whatsoever to the same barke apperteyninge, frely and clerly, in consideration of the price of the fish together with the foresaid 12 last 8 barrels and a halfe of coddtishe at the price of twenty and sevin shillinges lawfull mony of England for every barrell for the which I acknowledge myself fully satysfyed, contented and paid by theis presents. To have and to hold all the aforesaid barke, taccle, apparrell and furniture together with the foresaid 12 last 8 barrels and a half of codefishe to the said William Didsbury, his executors and assigns, to the proper use and behoof of the same William Didsbury, his executors and assignes for ever."
[1574.]—Certificate by Henry Gaymer, Deputy of John Donning, Mayor of Rye, that "about the 30th daie of Maie last past before the the date hereof" Michell Maignen and John Constantin, fishermer, "masters of two severall botes of Pollett in Fraunce using the trade of fishinge" were taken prisoners by John Sinaii of Rochell "captaine of a barke aperteyninge to the said towne;" Nicholas Lameshin in Constantin's boat was taken "as pledge and prisoner for all the hole company of the said two botes" until 60 crownes were paid to the said John Sinaii for the ransome of Lameshin and the "residewe of the company of the said two botes."
The certificate goes on to say that the said Michell Maignen had come to Rye "to inquire out the said John Sinaii for to paye him the said 60 crownes for the raunsome of the said two botes company and redemying home the said Nicholas Lameshin" but that he could find neither Sinaii nor Lameshin; and so, "being redy to paie the said 60 crownes for raunsome as aforesaid to the said John Sinaii," required this certificate. Draft.
[1574.]—Letter of the Mayor and Jurats of Rye praying the Queen's Commissioner in the county of Sussex to permit Thomas Harmon and Anthony Toppey (?) "two of our honest neighbours" to transport corn from Chichester to Rye.
"There are in our towne with us inhabitinge a great nomber of pooer people of the French church, as is not all togethers to your worships unknowne. So it is right worshipful that one Haunce Haunson, of the same towne, merchaunt, an honest neighbour and one of the said French church, hath bought of Simone Skypper, Maior of Arundell, the nomber of 100 quarters of wheat, onelie for the provision of the pooer French people, which will not onlie be a comfort unto them but also a great comodyty unto us. Theis are therefore to pray you to permitt the said Haunce Haunson to transport the same 100 quarters of wheat from Arundell aforesaid unto the said town of Ry, being for provision as abovesaid, under such orders as your Worships have taken and appointed and as to you shall seme good; wherein ye shall not only pleasure the said pooer French people of the same towne, who shall be bound daylie to pray for your Worshippes, for whome in this case he hath onlie traveled but also we for our parts beholding to you for your curteyies as knowith the Almighty." Draft.
"Whereas there is one letter written unto you in the recommendation of Hawcce Haunson to make provisyon of 100 quarters of wheate for the French churche, theis are in most humble wise to desier you Worshippes nott to suffer the said Hawnce Hawnson to make suche provision for that we are, since the writinge thereof, crediblie enformed the said Hawnce to be a subtle and lose man and suche a one as hath byn a conveyor of corne, although his friends have made great recommendation of his dealinge in honestye, as wold have simply used himself in that trust committed unto him for the provision of the pooer French churche. We, moved in pyttye for their releafe, supposed him mete for their supply, did make bold to recommend hym to your Worships for that provision, but now knowing him to be a conveyor directlye againste honestye and truthe, disallow him as one not worthy of that trust." Draft.
[1574.]—Safe conduct for Robert Comyssary of Rye, mariner, in the Bonaventure, "having aborde hym the nombre of forty persons being all of the Religion" to sail from Rye aforesaid "unto the Isle of Capdevert and from thence to Serlion uppon the Coast of Gynney about their lawfull and honest affaires, traficque and busynes to be done" and then return to Rye. Draft.
"In the moneth of January last past the bearers hereof Jacques Nealle and Vincent . . . ., merchants resident within the towne of Ry, and of the French church, had certen goodes and merchandize laden at Diep in France in a vessel of Diep, whereof one Nicholas Verron, marryner, was master, to be transported from the said town of Diep unto Ry, which goods were uppon the sea nere unto Hasting, taken awaie by certen Englishmen to the utter undoeing of the said poer men; and understanding by them that your Worship hathe made staie of those goodes, theis are therefore, on the behalf of the pooer men, in justice to beseche you to stand theire good frend in ayding them to have their goods again, paieing such dueties and charges as aperteyneth, wherin the pooer men and their famyle shall not only be bound to pray for you but also we for our partes redy to pleasur you in eny thing we maie as knowith the Almighty."