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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"We think it our parts to acquaint you that your letter and desire to the Commissioners are granted, that your persons and arms shall remain at home for the service of the Commonwealth in the defence of your town, you listing yourselves and arms under the command of Capt. Fissenden, which will be an additional strength for the securing your corporation." Signed, Seal of Arms.
"In pursuance of an order of the Committee for reformation of the Universities of the 15th of January 1650 grounded on an order of the Comittee for Plundered Ministers, it is ordered that the yearly summe of forty nine pounds sixe shillings eight pence be continued for increase of maintenance unto Mr. William Russell, minister of the Parish church of Rye in the County of Sussex, vizt. the yearly sume of 18l. reserved to the Deane and Chapter of Canterbury out of severall of their possessions in Ecclesham in the said County and the yearly sum of tenne poundes out of several of their possessions in Chislehurst, and the yearly sume of eleaven poundes, six shillinges, eight pence out of severall of the possessions belonginge to the Deane and Chapter of Chichester in Bexill, and the yearly rent of tenne poundes reserved to the Bishop of Winton' out of the impropriate rectory of Rye aforesaid, in all amounting to the yearly sume of 49li. 6s. 8d. as aforesaid, the said augmentation to be accoumpted from the 25th day of March last, the present maintenance belonging to the said minister being by the said order expressed to be but fourty poundes a yeare." Copy.
"Upon severall complaints of the poore tradsmen of this towne unto us made that many of the disbanded souldiers and other strangers did sett upp and exercisse pubike trades and callinges, to there great prejudice and apparent ruine, and desiringe redresse therein and withall being acquainted that divers of the said disbanded souldiers and strangers had wives and children which are like to bee a sudden and great charge to this place which is already so poore that the inhabitants are very much oppressed in beareinge the charge thereof (as also by the souldiers quarteringe in private houses, forcibly against the minds of the inhabitants) for remedy whereunto we did proceed accordinge to law and the priviledges of this Corporation for our own conservation, that we fall not into an irrecoverable mischeife, in manner followinge:—Firste, we have received into and permitted all such souldiers which were, now or at any tyme heretofore have beene disbanded, having formerly either beene borne or belonging to this place, to sett up and exercise their severall trades and callinges therein. 2ly. Wee have permitted all such disbanded souldiers which have married wives of this place also to sett up and exercise their severall trades and callinges therein. 3ly. Wee doe permitt and suffer many disbanded souldiers and others as also those which are in present service to worke as journymen under master workemen of this towne. Now upon the desires aforesaid we have proceeded with all such which are not comprehended in these severall qualifications aforesaid in this legall order. First, we gave them tymly warninge to desist the publique exercise of there callinges and depart this place and goe to there severall places of birth or last abode, there to use there severall trades, accordinge to Act of Parliament in that case made and provided. 2ly. After an expedient space of tyme expired, fynding them soe farre from observinge this order that they did not only stay but contempuously in there behaviour did abuse the Governors and Governement of this place, whereupon we directed our warrante to the Constables for the apprehendinge and committinge to prison of some of them for their misdemeanors aforesaid, in the prosecution of which we have found great opposition by Captain Farley (as we conceive by Captain Fissenden's instigation) who did rescue one of these, so committed, from our Officers as they were carrying him to prison under pretence that he was listed under him. Whereupon we desired a meetinge, and accordingly had, where wee desired of Captain Farly to know whether hee and the rest under committment were listed or not, whereupon hee ingenuously confessed that they were not, only he sayd he had promised Captain Fissenden to list sixe of his men next muster, but he did not know the names of them, only one of them he said he promised to list at the tyme above said, which is not the man soe rescued but one Dearinge, a man of evill behaviour and greatly prejudiciall to the poore tradesmen of this place whereby the course of justice is obstructed and the souldiers imboldened to despise and contemne all Government and ministers thereof. Of all which proceedinges we thought fitt to give you a true, full, and naked narrative thereof that you may be rightly informed of the premisses. Wee fearinge it may be presented to you in another dresse.
The premises considered we are in a sore and deplorable condition, poverty and misery cometh upon us like a armed man and wee are obstructed in the use of the remedy the law provided for the prevention thereof.
Wee therefore humbly begge your Honors would be pleased to take this our sad condition into your serious and speedy considerations (some of you being members of this opprest Corporation and so cannot but sympathize in our misery) and some way or other free us (who cannot as free men lye under soe great bondage) from our aforesaid obstructions, that we may freely execute the law committed to us by this present power on those that are offenders and contemne the Ministers thereof."
The causes may be summed up under the headings of the increase of alehouses and brewers, and allowing strangers pedlers and chapmen to sell their wares privately instead of in the market place, and the suffering of strangers to remain in the town until they become by law inhabitants, and in process of time a parish charge.
"Theis are to acquainte you that I beinge about my occasions this day heere at New Romney and being redy to take horse, I was attached by the Sarjant with a writte from the Mayor and Jurats for 9li. 6s. 3d. that our Towne of Rye was at the last Brotherhood ordered to pay in to the Clarke of the howse within six monthes then next ensuinge for the first defaulte of the westerne bayliffes defaulte in goinge to Yarmouth, which six monthes being now expired, I thought good therfore speedyly to send theis unto you, desiering you to take order for my inlargment untill which tyme I shall remaine heere in there custody."
1651[–2], March 22.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that Louis Gilliart, a French Merchaut, hath been and still is an inhabitant of the Town of Rye during twelve years and hath always behaved himself well.
1652, April 22.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye. Upon our petition to the Council of State for a free trade between this place and Dieppe in France, they have been pleased to grant an order for the furtherance thereof, that all vessels known to be of Dieppe shall quietly pass between this port and that, and not be interrupted. They have desired Colonel Popham, General in the Downs, to give notice thereof to all vessels under his command. John Manger is master of a vessel of Dieppe and has liberty to pass and repass according to the said order.
"We humbly certify that during the time of the late differences in this nation there hath always been a fair correspondence between this town and Dieppe in France, the Governour thereof behaving himself very civilly and courteously towards the friends of this State and denying entertainment to pirates, insomuch as upon our petition the right honourable the Counsel of State were favourably pleased to order free intercourse of trade between the said towns of Dieppe and Rye. And notwithstanding at Dieppe they were informed that two of their vessels (which only have commission to guard their fishing vessels from the Ostenders) were taken by some of our States men of war and now in the Downs yet have they since permitted an English barque of this place to bring over the greatest passage that we have known come over a long while, who arrived here this morning. All which we presumed to acquaint your Honour with, earnestly desiring those fishing guards might be released." Draft.
First, the harbour lyeth to the westward outward southwest in one channell and eastward east southeast outward in one other channell, and therefore is a good outlet for a ship to go to sea with the wind at east south east to the westward or to the eastward with the wind at south south west.
2ly.—When it flowes from foure to eight in the west channell, there is fourteene or 15 foot water on the shales, and betweene that time 24 and 30 foot water and in the East Channell is 10 or 11 foot water and betweene that tyme 20 and 24 foot water.
3ly.—The channell within the harbor in the narrowest place is a hundred fathom over and in lengtht is one mile and halfe navigable a quarter of a mile of which Channel is 4 and 5 fathome water at lowe water, the other mile and quarter hath part 3 fadome, part 16 foot and the rest 13, 14 and 15 foot water at low water in the ebbe of the highest springe tydes.
4ly.—There may lye afloat at lowe water 15 or 20 sayle of shippes which draw 3 and 3½ fathome water and have more water than they draw by 4 or 6 foot and at the same tyme further up in the Channell may ride afloat at lowe water 50 or 60 sayle of ships which draw 12 or 13 foot water all without prejudice one to the other.
"Last night the Marline frigat arrived here and this morninge divers officers of the same complained unto us against there Captain, Peter Warren, for that yesterday at sea before they came into this place he killed one John Wright, a passenger in the vessell, and withall presented there captaine as a prisoner, desiringe he might be secured till further order. Whereupon taking severall examinations touchinge the premises and considering the nature of the fact we could do no lesse then committ him to custody untill your Honours pleasure should be knowne therein, which we humbly intreat for our further dirrection." Draft.
"In the vacancy of a minister you were pleased to recomend Mr. John Allin unto us, whom we find a man able and fitting for the place, and at a vestry he hath beene approved and chosen by the parish to be our Minister. We therefore intreat your Honor will be pleased to confirme and establish him here, and procure the continuation of the Augmentation unto him, for which with your former recommendations of him we shall we hope be ready alwaies to acknowledge as a great favour." Draft.
1652, March 19.—Order directed to the Constables of Rye. "By "vertue of an Act of this present Parliament for the better observation of the Lord's day etc., these are to will require you and every of you carefully and dilligently to make search and inquisition in all taverns, innes, alehouses, tobacko houses or shops, or victualling houses within this Towne of Rye and liberties thereof for the discovering and apprehending those which shall upon the Lordes dayes profanely dance, singe, drinke or tiple, contrary to the said Act and finding any soe to offend or otherwise by playing in the streets, working in there callings, selling wares, or merchandize or travelling etc. contrary to the said Act you cause the same to be apprehended and brought before me that they may be punished according to the said Act."
"Upon the receipt of your order wee addressed ourselves unto the impressing men for the service of the fleet, but by reason that many of our Towne able and fitting to serve are in the service of the State already, and divers others at sea, this place at present affoordes none except unserviceable men, and for your Honors better satisfaction we have inclozed a list of such barques as are at present belonging unto this Towne and at home, with the Masters names and the men thereto belonginge, further assuringe your Honors that some of those men are not only aged as we have there certified but also sicke soe that most of our fisher Masters have soe few men that they have sent for out of France, some five and some sixe French men a piece to supply there wantes this fishing season, but as occasion offers men serviceable, you shall finde us ready and willing to officiate for the service of the state and benefit of this comon wealth." Draft.
1653, December 27.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that Louis Gilliart hath been an inhabitant of Rye for twelve years, where also his wife has lived and seven children have been born to him, and that he is a man well affectioned to this Commonwealth and never was in arms against the late Parliament.
1653[–4], February. Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that about Whitsun week 1650 one John Parker, of Rye, fisherman, being in his vessel with eleven of his company off Dungeness to catch mackerel, was taken with his vessel by one John Welsh, an Irish Commander, and carried to Gravelines, where he was imprisoned for six days and afterwards was removed to Calais where he remained in durance four days longer, until he procured and paid thirty-five pounds. By reason whereof he and his family are greatly impoverished.
The Deponent says that last night being in the company of Captain Peter Borgaro in the house of Michael Cadman in Rye he heard the said Captain say that he wondered that my Lord Protector would suffer such a one, as my Lord Ambassador was, to be here for he came to cut the English throats. Signed.
1654, April 20.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that Mark Heytman, master of the ship called the St. Marke of Straalsund, in Sweden, was taken at sea by one Captain Pedro Borgaro, of Dover, captain of a private man of war, and was brought into the harbour of Rye and that he hath lost out of his ship goods to the value of 50 li.
"These are to will and require you to suffer no person or persons whatsoever, without the speciall license of his Highnes or Councell obteyned, after the date hereof to passe the port of Dover or other places or precincts thereunto belonging to any the parts beyond the seas, for the space of fourteene dayes next coming. And for the better preventing their passing, as aforesaid, you are to appoint strict watches to be kept in the said Port and places and if any person shall come for the end aforesaid, you are hereby authorized to apprehend all such persons and others whome you shall have just cause to suspect to be enemies to the State, and shall remaine in the said Port and precincts and to give an account thereof hither. And all such persons as shall come from beyond the Seas within the said time, you shall make stay of and keepe them in safe custody, untill you signifie their names, and what else you thinke materiall concerning them to his Highnes or the Councell." Copy.
In pursuance of your order of 21st instant we have made diligent inquisition and search within this town and liberties thereof, and have only at present resident in this town bound for France ten persons whose names are hereunder written, whom we have detained till further order from your Honours. Draft.
According to your directions I have examined the two gentlewomen and have here enclosed the examinations. I have by your order also directed a messenger to attend them to London and charged him that no man might be suffered to speak to them till they have been before the Council.
Examinations enclosed. Mrs. Mary Lucey of London says that about eight weeks ago she did pass over to France to see a sister who lived at a place called Pontodame beyond Paris and this was the only cause of her travel.
Mrs. Frances Walpoole of London says that about two months ago she did go to France to bear a gentlewoman of her acquaintance, one Mrs. Mary Lucey of London, company, and she says she hath no other business than a desire to see the country.
1645, May 30.—Safe conduct by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye to Joseph Dugard, an inhabitant and mariner of Rye, a poor man, who hath had some losses by sea and hath four small children to maintain by his labour.
"Whereas for the better preservation and security of the publique peace his Highnes and the Councell have thought it necessary that very great care and exactnes be used in searchinge all vessells coming to or goeing from any the Portes of this Nation for the better discovery of suspitious persons, whether in their way outward or inward and that a speciall and more then ordinary vigilance be used as to all the creekes and small outletts neare thereunto, whither dangerous persons will most probably apply themselves, you are therefore hereby strictly enjoyned and required to use your uttermost dilligence in the premisses within your Ports and all the creekes thereunto belonginge or adjacent and to apprehend and keepe in safe custody all persons of whom you shall apprehend grounds of suspicion, untill upon giving an accoumpt thereof to the Counsell, you shall receive other order from us." Copy.
"Our high esteeme of your Honour and presumption of your acceptance hath put us upon the choyse of your Honour to be Baron for this Towne at his Highnes Parliament to be holden at Westminster, September 3rd next, which yesterday at the election was freely done at an assembly of this Corporation according to his Highnes writ and the instrument intituled, the Government of the Comon wealth of England, etc. Our intreaty is that your Honour will looke upon it as a signall of the good affections you deserve and wee beare to you, being in no other way capable to expresse our readynes to serve and honour you. We further desire to know your Honor's pleasure if your occasions will permit you to repaire hither within tenne daies to receive the oath of a Baron of the Portes, as is usuall in such case, if not, we shall commissionate some to administer the same to you." Draft.
"By letters from Ry of the 7th instant and by yours of the 8th I perceive that I am elected to serve for the Towne, in the ensueing Parliament, I doe acknowledge it a great honour that you deeme me capable of such a service, yet I so well know my owne inability and how unfitt I am for an employment of that consequence if I might fayrely deny to answer your expectacions, but since without my seeking or sollicitation, over ruling Providence hath by your free election devolved upon me, I shall not resist a call from heaven, but am the more free to enterteine the same. And I doe earnestly desire that we all may be frequent in prayer to Almighty God that he would so assist me with the Grace of His Holy Spirite that I may be qualifyed for this greate worke and enabled therby to doe Him, your towne and my country all faithfull service." Seal.
"I suppose I neede not acquaint you what passed yesterday here, that I was elected by the county for one of their knights, so that it will be expected I should wave the election of the towne, which I do most unwillingly as not desirous to undervalue so undeserved a favour but though I doe not imediately serve for your towne in this Parliament yet my constant care shall not be wanting to doe you all the service I can, which you may rest confident of, and God willing shal be really demonstrated upon every opportunity." Seal.
That walking in the highway from Playden in May last he heard Anthony Norton say, as they were talking of the fighting at sea, that there were none but rogues that fought against the King, and that Cromwell and all that followed him were rogues. And he further saith that the reason he did not disclose these words to the Mayor and Jurats before, was because the said Anthony Norton owed him some money and he was willing to get his money before he revealed it.
On this present day at the Court of Record of his Highness the Lord Protector held before us at the suit of Anthony Norton against Mark Hounsell, there was tendered a declaration for scandalous words, which when we had read we found to reflect higher than the said Anthony Norton, to wit, on the honour of his Highness. Whereupon we instantly caused the said Mark Hounsell to come before us and examining him upon the same found him to justify the speaking of dangerous words by the said Anthony Norton." Draft.
"I hope the business about your harbour is put in a good way of preservation as Mr. Miller, your agent, will more particularly acquaint you with. If any service be further requisite I shall willingly appear in it as there shall be occasion. I cannot but acknowledge your favour in electing me for your burgess thereby demonstrating the great confidence you repose in me, wherein I hope you shall not be disappointed. And though I have now made choice to serve for the County, yet I shall be as faithful to your Town as any you shall employ in this second election. God direct you in your choice of which I shall say no more but that I entreat that the person elected may be of our own county." Seal.
"Whereas Col. Morley was lately elected one of the Knightes to serve in this present Parliament begune at Westminster September the third last, for the County of Sussex, and also a Baron for this Port, and hath made choyse to serve in Parliament for the County, we have lately received a writ for the choyse of another to serve as Baron in his stead, and this day proceeding to election, it has fallen upon your Honor, our desires are you will looke upon it as a segnall of the good affections this Corporation bear toward you." Draft.
1654[–5], January 2.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that Lewis Gilliart and Claudius Gilliart, his brother, inhabitants of Rye, are both professors of the Protestant religion and the said Lewis has lived in Rye, with his wife and family, for thirteen years, and the said Claudius about two years and that they are men of good report.
"We are lately given to understand that there is a sort of fisherman inhabiting within the Cinque Ports," called "trowlers and drawers by the water side" who by reason of the smallness of the "moakes" in their nets take up and destroy all the young fish which they meet with, to the great prejudice of the public. We desire you will forthwith cause public notice to be given that no person do henceforth use any such unlawful nets. Copy.
"Here is at this Port, desirous to pass for France, one Mr. John Barter, of London, of middle stature inclining to tallness, somewhat square, brown hair mixed with gray, about fifty-seven years of age. His business in France, he saith and we believe is, to put a nephew of his named Henry Barter to learn the French tongue. We have no cause of suspicion in him but because he hath no pass we desire to know your Honour's pleasure." Draft.
On the 11th instant landed at this Port from France these four whose names are under-written, whom, upon their security, we have permitted to pass to London to wait on your Honour, having found nothing suspicious about them.
1654[–5], March 14.—Order by Alexander Bennet to Richard Baseden, serjeant of the mace, to demand of every person within the Town of Rye such sums as are due to the Corporation and are yet behind and unpaid for Town's duties, malthood, quateridge, commonly called shop-window money.
I have lately received several proclamations herewith sent (declaring his Highness' pleasure for putting in execution the laws against the Jesuits and priests, and for the speedy conviction of popish recusants) I hereby pray and require you that you forthwith cause the same to be duly proclaimed. Copy.
"By reason there are so many men of war on this coast (you know one of our vessels is taken already, [and] Capt. Cadman had like to have been taken going over Sunday night last) we thought good to petition the Lord Protector for a convoy, and we desire you to present the business."
Petition attached. Stating that whereas the seas on these coasts are much infested with men of war of the Royal party, and that the trade between Dieppe and this place is likely to be spoiled, the Mayor and Jurats pray that a small frigate may attend upon their vessels as convoy. Draft.
I have lately received several of the proclamations for the relief of godly ministers against suits and molestations by persons sequestered, ejected, and not approved. I pray you forthwith to proclaim the same. Copy.
"I have lately received a proclamation for perfecting the collection for the relief of the Protestants inhabitants of the valleys of Lucerne, Agroma, etc. and also a proclamation giving notice that the remaining differences between the English and the Dutch stand referred to Commissioners appointed on both sides, who are to assemble at Amsterdam in Holland. I hereby pray and require you that you forthwith cause the same to be proclaimed.
Whereas late upon petition to his Highness the Lord Protector, Capt. Sanckey was ordered to attend this port as convoy for vessels between this place and Dieppe, whom we have intelligence coming from Caen on Wednesday last was taken by a French man of war and carried into Boulogne. We desire your Honour will order a convoy, in the stead of Capt. Sanckey, for the safe conduct of vessels of this town laden with merchants' goods over to the said Port of Dieppe. Draft.
I have lately received a proclamation prohibiting Delinquents to bear office or have any voice or vote in any election of any public officer, I pray and require you forthwith to cause the same to be proclaimed. Copy.
We have taken an opportunity by these to acquaint you that the middle aisle of the chancel here, which belongs to the parsonage of this parish, is very ruinous and one gutter, running between that aisle and the part inclosed to the use of the town, requires amending. We have received much damage by the rain, and although we have often solicited Thomas Morphet (who we understand doth hire the same of your Worship) that it might be repaired, yet will he do nothing nor without your help is anything likely to be done. Draft.
There being a very great want of able mariners to furnish the fleet now setting forth to sea for the defence and service of the Commonwealth, we have thought it expedient to direct these our letters to you, authorizing and requiring you forthwith to impress within your town and membres, sixty able seamen, being above the age of fifteen and under sixty, giving to each man twelve pence press money and three halfpence a mile conduct to Dover. And you are to order them to repair before the Mayor of the said town, who shall take care for the sending them on board the State's ships in the Downs. The affair is of that concernment to the public that we shall expect a very strict compliance. Signed. Seal of the Admiralty.
Whereas the necessity of seamen in the State's Service and our commands for their impressing within our town and member, we have thought meet to desire you that in case there be any seamen (as we hear there are some fled hence to secure themselves with you) within your Town and Hundred you would impress them, giving them their conduct money for Dover.
In pursuance of our Lord Warden's late order touching the impressing of seamen we have done our endeavours to impress the number of seamen required by the said orders, but some of our vessels being abroad and others laid up at home for this winter time, few seamen are to be found in this town and those that were upon suspicion of a prest (the messenger that brought the orders coming in the daytime) fled out of our Liberties and hid themselves in the Foreign, so that though we presently endeavoured their taking and since have searched divers houses yet cannot meet with enough to accomplish the number, nor believe the number of 60 can be found in Town, unless masters themselves and others incapable to do service should be added to the complement. Draft.
1655[–6], March 14.—Order by the Mayor and Jurats to the Constables of Rye to levy a distress of 26s. 8d. on Alice, the wife of Robert Batten, of Rye, seaman, for profanely swearing four oathes and in default of finding goods to the value of the fine, to set the same Alice in the stocks for twenty-four hours.
"Whereas by sundry Letters Patents under the Great Seal of England and other edictes and ordinances of State, we the Barons of the Cinque Portes and their members were anciently assigned and appointed, together with you, the Bailiffes of Great Jernmuth, to be Wardenes and Governors of your free faire there, and to have with you the keeping of the prison and administration of royall justice there during the continuance of the said faire, which services have for many ages last past beene by us and our predecessors, Barons of Cinque Portes, and members duly and faithfully performed, and yet for ought we can finde by experience, little or no benefitt hath thereby redowned or is likely to redowne to the Comonwealth. In regard whereof we for our partes are contented, if you shall think it fitting and that it may be done without perill or prejudice either to you or us, to lay downe and relinquish upon reasonable and fitting termes all our power and authority any waies concerning the Government of the said faire, and to leave the same wholly to be acted and managed by you. For the better effecting whereof we shall desire (if you approve of this designe) that you would comissionate two or three to joyne with the like number to be by us comissionated to meet at London about the begining of this next ensuing Parliament, at a certain tyme and place to be by you prefixed, to treat, consult and consider how and in what manner and upon what safe and fitting termes we may be for the future, free and discharged from sending our Bayliffes to your faire for the performance of the services aforesaid and according to the oppertunity now putt into our hands to prepare and agree upon an Act to be presented to the high and honorable Court of Parliament, whereby we, the Barons of the Cinque Portes and their members, may be absolutely exempted for tyme to come from the said services and that the same may be transmitted and wholly settled and established upon you with fitting cautions and provisoes nevertheles that our Barons and inhabitantes of the Cinque Portes and their members may injoy their free fishing and free bringing in and selling of their fish at the said faire, and have den and stroud theire, and all such other liberties privileges and immunities, as they or any of their predecessors have formerly had, used, or enjoyed in, at, or about the said faire or Towne of Great Jernemuth, either by sea or land. If you like of these our proposalls we shall desire your answer by the bearer."
1656, August 13.—The Poll paper for the election of a Baron to Parliament for the town of Rye. William Hay, Esquire, Allen Grebell, Jurat, and Edward Hopkins, Esquire, candidates. William Hay elected.
Concurring in the proposal of the Ports to relinquish the service of the Ports at the free fair at Yarmouth and suggesting a meeting of representatives from the Ports and Yarmouth at London to consider the matter. Copy.
1656, September 1.—Order by the Mayor of Rye to the Constables of Rye that in accordance with an Act of Parliament lately made for the better observance of the Lord's day &c., carefully and diligently on the said Lord's days to make search and inquisition in all taverns, inns, alehouses, "tobacko houses" or shops and victualing houses within the town of Rye, for the discovering and apprehending those which shall on the Lord's days profanely dance, sing, drink, or tipple contrary to the said Act; and finding any so to offend or otherwise by playing in the streets working in their callings, selling wares, or merchandise, or travelling by land or sea, contrary to the said Act, to cause the said offenders to be apprehended and brought before the Mayor that they may be punished according to the said Act. Draft.
1656, October 21.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that Lewis Gilliart and Claudius Gilliart, his brother, are both professors of the Protestant religion and that the said Lewis has lived in Rye fifteen years with his wife and family, and the said Claudius about the space of four years, that they have lived peaceably and are well affected to the Commonwealth. Draft.
I am informed that a barque, whereof one George Broadbridge was master, being surprised by the enemy was by some Frenchmen of your town together with the help of the barque's men regained and brought into Dieppe, and for their salvage they intend to make her their prize. The enemy have taken the master prisoner, and intend to set a ransom on him. Wherefore on the poor man's behalf I desire your favour that what may be reasonable for your men's salvage of the barque may be allowed and the barque restored. Draft.
May it please you to excuse our boldness in troubling you with these lines on the behalf of some merchants in this Town, to intreat your Honour to order a convoy for two barques which are here bound over with merchandise to Dieppe, and by reason of imminent danger and the late loss of a vessel of this place between the two ports, afraid to venture alone.
Postscript.—Since writing here is come to Town a post with a States' packet, who commonly passing by Dover with convoy, now finding his journey will be shorter this way to the English forces in France, is minded to pass this way and is fearful of venturing his packet without convoy. Draft.
1657[–8], January 12.—Petition by the Keepers of Taverns, Inns, and Alehouses in Rye to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye to advise them what lawful course to take to obtain payment for the billet and lodging of soldiers quartered upon them.
"We have taken the boldness to present these to you not to tell you in generall of our good affections formerly to the Parliament or now to his Highnes and the present government, or in particular to yourselfe, nor of the poore estate and condition of this place, neither do we conceive we need so to do, yourselfe well knowing that as to the one we have obeyed, not only for feare but for conscience sake, and as to the other, we hope your experience will beare us wittnes in our absence, neither do we delight to trouble your Honor with unnecessary complaintes, but severall pressive burdens and inconveniences lying upon us, we are necessitated to be troublsome unto you at this tyme, which we hope you will favourably beare with. We have had quartered upon us as you know two companies of foot souldiers in your regiment above this twelve moneths (save a few that for some tyme past have beene at Hasting) and all this tyme they have had free billet, many of them at first upon the private houses and ever since the first upon the innes and alehouses (as by a copy of a petition lately to us presented here inclozed appeareth). And at their first coming did for a certaine tyme provide fire and candle for the guardes, of which we are not yet reimbursed. And since the beginning of November last, have at the request of the Captaines, alleadging an Act of Parliament in that behalfe, supplyed the Captaines weekly with money for the souldiers, whereupon, we have disbursed above 200li. And besides the souldiers by observing the strict rules of garrisons at their first coming by disarming gentlemen that came into Towne did cause an utter cessation of gentlemenes accesse hither, whereby the trade of this Town is abundantly decayed, but also of late the inhabitants have beene denied by the souldiers to goe up and downe the cliffes to and from their vessells though necessitie never so much require which is more strict then was ever used by any soulderes heretofore in this place. Now forasmuch as your Honour hath alwayes professed your love and good affections to this place and the souldieres are under your command, we thought meete to addresse ourselves to you, hoping that it may be in your power to redresse our grievances in the premises and intreat your answer therein by the bearer, desiring that our monies disbursed as aforesaid may be repaid, and the rest of our burthens removed, otherwise the people here are so poore and the trading so much decaped, that we are not able to subsist, but must as many already speake, leave the Towne and seeke a livelyhood elsewhere if no remedy therein can be had, but we hope we shall herein finde favour in your sight." Draft.
1658, April 7.—Petition of several artificers and tradesmen to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye praying a remedy to the practice of persons exercising misteries and trades to which they have not been apprenticed.
"We understand that there are several persons who doe daily land from beyond the seas as well in the Ports as in other creekes and by-places and by their wandering up and downe and other carriages, they show themselves to be dangerous persons, and come over with a designe against the peace of the Commonwealth. You are therefore upon the receipt hereof to cause some of your troopes to be allwayes upon the coast and neere these landing places with orders to apprehend and seize upon all such persons as shall land, or be found wandering up and downe in the country, and to cause them to be secured untill they be examined and can give a good accompt of themselves and their business. And all such as shall land in any of the Ports, the Officers of the Ports are required to make stay of them as aforesaid, and the same orders are to be observed, as to any that shall passe from hence to any parts beyond the Seas. And all Justices of Peace and other Officers, both military and civill, are to be aiding and assisting to you in these things, who are required to use their utmost indeavours to call all such persons as aforesaid to be apprehended and secured." Copy.
"Att the request of your Quarter Master, Mr. Benbrigge, I have wrott these to acquaint you that all things are in a very quiet posture in these partes and for this particuler towne we are and shall remaine carefull to secure the same against all enemies of his Highness and the Commonwealth, with the utmost of our lives and estates, and since the time the soldiers went hence to the Leagure at Dunkirke, have given order to those which are listed under my command, by vertue of his Highness commission, to be ready with their armes, and intend to exercise them, and every night to keepe a sufficient watch in towne and if at any time any eminent danger should appeare I shall readily acquaint you therewith." Draft.
"Whereas it hath pleased the most wise God in his providence yesterday about fower of the clocke in the afternoone, to take out of this world the most serene and renowned Oliver, late Lord Protector of this Comonwealth, to the unspeakable griefs of our hearts and the invaluable losse of these Nations, but in this sore affliction it doth much relieve our spirittes that his said late Highnes in his lifetyme, according to the humble petition and advice did appoint and declare the most noble and illustrious Lord, the Lord Richard, eldest sonne of his said late Highnes, to succeede him in the Government of these Nations. A person who hath given such eminent testimony of his faithfullnes and great affection to the cause of God and the publique interest of these nations hath given us aboundant cause of rejoycing that the Lord hath provided him such a successor to undertake the Government in whose prudence and moderation we may acquisce and under whom we have not only hopes but much confidence that the Lord will make these Nations happie. Wee therefore of the Privie Councell together with the Lord Maior, Aldermen and Cittizens of London, the Officers of the Army, with numbers of principall Gentlemen, have with one full voyce and consent, tongue, and hearte this day published and proclaymed the said noble and illustrious Lord Richard to be rightfully protector of this Comonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland and the dominions and territories thereunto belonging, to whome wee acknowledge all fidellitie and constant obedience, according to Law, and the humble petition and advice with all heartie and humble affections. And therefore have thought fitt to signifie the same unto you, willing and requiring you to cause the same to be proclaimed in all the Townes within your jurisdiction imediately on receipt hereof, according to the form herein inclosed, mututis mutandis, with such solempnitie as becomes a busines of such a nature and to take all due care for the preservation of the peace and securing the same against all insurrections and disturbances that may be made by evill minded men upon this change." Copy.
Enclosing a Proclamation signifying his Highness' pleasure "that all men being in office of Government at the decease of his most deare father, Oliver, late Lord Protector, shall so continue till his Highnes further direction." Copy.
1658, September 22.—Order by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye to William Ducke, Collector of the duties for the maintenance of the "Lights, Boomes and Boyes" in Rye, to levy certain duties on ships and vessels coming in or going out of the harbour of Rye.
1658, October 16.—Depositions of Robert Covin, master of the Francis of Dieppe, and two of his Company who said that "about a moneth agoe they were at Flushing in Zealand and continued there the space of tenne daies, in which time these deponentes did observe that one man of warre belonging to the King of Spaine did bring into Flushing eight vessells taken prize from Englishmen, one of which eight was a vessell laden with seacoales, that did belong to Richard Oake of this Towne of Rye, and there did sell and dispose of them. Also these deponents during the time of there abode there at Flushing aforesaid, did see severall vessells belonging to the King of Spaine come in there with three or foure men, and in three or foure dayes tyme they were furnished with abut forty men apiece and were also fitted and supplyed with all sorts of provision needfull, which these deponents observed them to take aboard in the evening. And the aforesaid Robert Covin doth depose that severall persones that were formerly inhabitants in Dunkirke and other places in Flanders, seamen, do now dwell in Flushing and other places in Zealand and go to sea in the service of the Kinge of Spaine. And further he saith that when he was ready to goe to sea, he went to the Judges of the Admiralty there to desire them not to permit the King of Spaines men of warre to go to sea that tyed that he went to sea. And they answered him they could do no such thing they were as free as he (this deponent) was."
I have lately received several proclamations for the better encouragement of Godly Ministers and others, and their enjoying their dues and liberty according to law, which I pray and require you forthwith to cause to be published and proclaimed. Copy.
"We, being informed of a speedy call of Parliament, conceive it oure duty as members of your Corporation to tender our assistance to you in that affayre, and to attend at the day of your election provided you doe fix uppon any day after the 3d of January which wee rather desire, because the day for the shire will fall uppon the 30th of this month of which you may hereafter have a more certayne advertisement. And in the meanetime consider of persons fitting for that employment, amongst whome wee offer to your consideration your old friend and burgess Mr. William Hay, and if you please to elect him for one and joine with him some honest and able Gentleman of your partes 'twill be a further encouragement both to him and us diligently to serve you, the former kindness received in affayres of this nature, justly meritt our gratefull acknowledgment which we hereby heartily tender unto you."
1658[–9], January 6.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye to Charles, Lord Fleetwood, Constable of the Castle of Dover, Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports, that they have unanimously elected William Hay, Esquire, and Mark Thomas, Esquire, to be Barons to Parliament. Draft.
That whereas the petitioners usually in the spring and summer go to sea to catch mackerel, as they are now ready to do, but by reason of the danger of these coasts by the often approach of men of war they are likely to be prevented from their fishing, unless a convoy is sent to attend them.
Two days ago one Robert Bouden, captain of a man of war by commission of the King of Sweden, brought into this harbour a vessel of Amsterdam, the master whereof hath petitioned us for relief conceiving himself to be free, as belonging to the United Provinces. On perusing Capt. Bouden's commission we find the extent thereof is only against the subjects of the King of Holand and Denmark, and therefore have made stay of the vessel aforesaid until your Honour's pleasure be known therein. Draft.
"In September 1656 Capt. Smith and Capt. Hardyer with their foot Companyes marched hither and quartered here till the begining of January following, and then marched away, and Captain Cocker and Captain Lingwood with their Companyes came here and quartered here till June 1658 and when Captain Smith and Captain Hardyer first came this Corporation disbursed severall sumes of money for fitting of guards, some of the houses we also hired and payd rent for, also for candles and coales, till a good while after Captain Cocker came, to the sume of 32li. 7s. 7d. And could never be reimbursed thereof save only of 13li. 1s. 4d. which Colonel Gibbon paid to Mr. Marshall, so as 19li. 6s. 3d. thereof, is yet behind. Also since Captain Cocker and Captain Lingwood went away we have beene at some charge and still are for maintaining our watch both for fire and candle and for pay for Drums to set the match every night and for a Gunner and for pouder match and fixing of arms, as the bearer Mr. Marshall can further inform you. Now our Corporation being poore, our humble request is that you wilbe pleased to endeavour the reimbursing us of the 19li. odde money aforesaid, and also of procuring us an order for some satisfaction for our charge of watching at presente and future and other the premisses which we are willing to maintaine having beene alwayes and still are faithfull and well afectioned to the Comonwealth as you know." Draft.
"Whereas the inhabitants of this place in generall ever since the beginning of the late warres have beene and still remaine cordially affected unto the Parliament and not only formerly have given evident demonstration theerof in raising both men and monies for the cause and service of the comon wealth, but lately upon Captain Marshall's receite of your Honer's orders' at the beat of the drum appeared 120 men to list themselves for you under him with armes provided at their owne charge, and continued in the constant and faithfull discharge of their duties night and day since these last commotions before any souldiers marched hither. And whereas on the 21st instant a party of the county horse came hither and the next day a 100 foot out of Kent commanded by Captain Heath in the regiment of Colonel Gibbon, who marching hither without money, the same day Captain Heath desired a loane of money of us and accordingly for the present some few did furnish him with 20li. for a weekes pay, hoping in the expence thereof he might receive some, which failing and that expended both he and we are in a great strait, the soldiers because their wants are necessitous the inhabitants because they (having lost much in the late warres with Holland and Spain, the great decay of trade, taxes increase of the parish poore etc.) are growne generally poore the perticular places where the souldiers quarter are not able to disburse money, complaine of their allowance of free billet and many of them, yet not reimbursed of above 20li. sent by them to Captain Owens souldiers almost a yeare and quarter since. Wherefore on the behalfe of the whole inhabitants we humbly pray your Honor to take the premises into your grave and piouse considerations and if you (to whose wisedome and care in those things we shall alway readily submit) shall see it meet for foot soldiers to remaine longer here (although we hope you have not and are confident cannot have any ground to suspect us disaffected) you wilbe pleased to make provision for their constant supply with monies that the burden thereof which we are not able to beare may be removed from us". Draft.
"The Council, having given order for the Company of the army foot that quartered in your towne to march to Sandwich, have thought good although they doubt not of your care of your towne, the security whereof as it is of consequence to you soe of greate concernment to the whole nation, to desire that in the absence of the aforesaid Company you will give order for strict watch and ward to be kept, that all such persons as shall endeavour to come in or to goe out at your cost whom you shall suspect to be any way dangerous to the peace of the nation may be stayed and secured according to the former order you have received in that behalfe. Signed and Seal of Arms.
"Wee having lately made our humble suite to your Honour for removall of the foot Company heere quartered and obtained your favorable grant thereof, who accordingly marched hence the 12th instant thought it our duty heereby to returne you hearty thanks and also to acquaint you that upon their departure wee did revive againe our watch observed heere. Draft."
I have lately received a Proclamation declaring the inhibiting of all meetings for the raising or drawing together of force without order of the Committee of Safety of the Commonwealth or the Lord Fleetwood, which I herewith pray and require you to proclaim within your liberties. Copy.
1659, December 19.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye that Thomas Chisewell of Rye, mariner, came before them and made oath that in the year 1650 he was master of a small vessel which in sailing from Dieppe to Rye was taken by one Utash Deniball of Calais, who pretended to be a King's man of war and further that he had no share in the said vessel.
"Understanding the late Parliament is dissolved and that they have ordered the speedy issueing off writts for electing a Parliament to assemble at Westminster the 25th of next month, I take the bouldnes to recomend unto you Generall William Penn (who is now att London) a person of such worth abilitie and capacitie to serve your Towne that if you please to pitch upon and elect him for one of your Burgesses I presume it will turne to the great advantage of your Corporation, I need not write much concerning his merits, hee being knowne to you, these Nations and other Nations and as hee hath beene in Chiefe Comand att sea noe douth he will be concerned in the Navall affaires again and soe bee able to doe your Corporation better service and in this as you will serve the Nation in generall soe your selves in particular."
Sir Thomas Milward, the King's Water Bailiff for Rye, being dead, that there may be no obstruction in the execution of justice in the Court of Record, we petitioned the then Council of State and obtained an order that our Corporation might make choice of a person to officiate in the said office until further order of the Parliament. Since which, the King's Majesty being returned to the possession of his Kingdom and dignity, we humbly beg your assistance to procure the said office for the benefit of our Corporation. Draft.
"Complaint hath bin made to the King of France by the fisherman of France of this restraint of their fishing on your English coast and taking their netts, pretending that they have alwayes bin permitted to fish for macharell on our coast, I desire you to examine as well the records of your towne as the ancient men thereof and to certify to his Royal Highness under your Towne seale what you find concerning it that soe wee may now justify our rights and privileges." Signed.
I have lately received a proclamation for the apprehension of Edmund Ludlowe, Esquire, commonly called Col. Ludlowe, and also an act of Parliament for the speedy provision of money for disbanding and paying off the forces of this Kingdom, both by land and sea, and I hereby pray and require that you forthwith cause the same to be duly published and proclaimed. Copy.
1660, September 29.—A Proclamation for the suppressing of disorderly and unseasonable meetings in Taverns and Tipling-houses and also forbidding Footmen to wear swords or other weapons within London, Westminster and their Liberties.
We hear the army is shortly to be disbanded, we desire you will please to certify us whether you will pay us the monies lent by this town to your soldiers in the companies of Captain Owen and Captain Heath while they quartered here, for if you will not, we must apply ourselves to the auditors of the army accounts or else lose our monies of which there is no reason. Draft.
I have received instructions from the Duke of York, our Lord Warden, to take care that such of his Majesty's loyal subjects as have formerly for their loyalty been displaced or hindered from the exercise of majestracy and other offices of trust in the Ports, may be restored thereto, and that such persons as have been unduly put in and are men who have been eminently active against the King, and especially such as expressed themselves in opposition to his late happy restoration, may be removed. Copy.
By your favour I have formerly been employed as your servant in the Commons House of Parliament, it is now strongly reported that the King's Majesty shortly intends to call another Parliament, though I am conscious of my own weakness, yet if your corporation shall please to repose so great a confidence in me as to elect me for one of their burgesses, I shall readily serve them with my utmost diligence. Seal.
"It is now above 20 yeares since you did mee the honor to make mee free of your ancient and worthy corporation by which I was made so happy as to serve in Parliament for one of your Burgesses. I cannot but believe that you esteeme that Parliament most unhappy, and that now you will indeavor not only to repair yourselves but even your old Burgess and hope that you will renew your old affections, and even in justice sett mee where I was, which honor if you shall be pleased to conferr upon mee, I shall study to deserve what those times deprived mee off and not only to your ancient corporation, but to any particular member, shall give both publique and private testimony of my gratitude in any thing within my power, which I hereby assure you shalbe manifested with such fidelity as becomes so great a trust where in as all occasions shalbe most wellcome." Seal of Arms.
"The King haveing thought fitt to summon a Parliament in which (as the whole Kingdome in generall is highly concerned) soe it is probable there may bee concernements peculier to your towne as a member of the Cinque Ports. I have judged it agreeable to that care which I sought alwaies to have of you, to recomend to your election for one of your burgesses to serve you in Parliament, Richard Spencer, Esqre., of whose abilities, for the discharge of that service I have soe good assurance that I doubt not but you will find the advantage of soe good a choice, to which the merrit of the person may bee sufficient to encourage you, besides that I promise myself it wilbee an additionall inducement to you, that by makeing a choice soe advantagious to yourselves, you will at the same time doe a work very acceptable to mee." Signed. Seal of arms.
"We have received your letter of the 28th of February last and take notice therein of your readiness to serve us as a Burgesse in the next ensuing Parliament as also your favourable aspect to this corporation therein specified, and for returne, although we have very much respects for you, yet can say no more at present but that we shall take the premisses into our consideration." Draft.
Whereas by my letter to you of the 23rd of June last I directed you to be very watchful to observe the motions and meetings of dangerous persons and to secure them, upon which many persons have been imprisoned as Quakers, within the Cinque Ports. I have received a letter from the Lords of the Council directing the discharge of all such persons as have been secured within the liberties of the Cinque Ports only on suspicion, in the late insurrection or at any time since, and do remain committed except only the ringleaders of faction among them. Copy.
"I send you by this bearer his Highnesse Royall the Duke of York his letter which I thought fit to present to you with all possible speed. I shall onely say for myselfe that I have beene an ancient Parliament man, having served in two Parliaments in King James his dayes and in three in the late King's time of blessed memory." Seal of arms.
"We have this day received a letter from his royall Highnesse the Duke of Yorke, our Lord Warden, together with yours of the 7th instant proposing yourselfe both ready and willing to serve us as a burgesse in the next ensueing Parliament and although you are a stranger to us, yet we presume his Highnesse would present none to us on such accompt but a person of honour and merit, and therefore in respect to his Highnesse we shall take the premisses into our consideration, and desiring the Lord to dirrect us in the issue, can say no more at present." Draft.
I must return my thanks for your letter of the 6th instant "Truly gentlemen I had ones the honor to be made a member among you and I am still ambitious to continue, not to challenge, but to deserve your favors, by some returnes both in generall and particular that may happily fall within my power, wherein you then so nobly ingage mee; what fell out afterwards I have forgotten and forgiven, and therefore now only resume my old devotion to this corporation, and hope that I shall have some occasion to give you some testimony that, I assert no other ends or interest but to serve you." Seal of arms.
"I give you many thankes for your great civilityes to me which I shall ever acknowledge with all thankfullnes, and I have very great desire to appeare before you all in person, which if the wayes were passable for a coach I should now have done, but my health is not so confirmed as yet that I dare travell out of a coach, therefore I desire your excuse and favourable construction for my absence at this time, which if you please to make me your servant in this Parliament I shall doubly repaire in the Parliament house, and if you please to make choice of me, what commands you shall please to give me I shall faithfully performe."
"I am by indisposition of health confined to my chamber, so that I cannot (as I intended) be present at your election (of which I thanke Mr. Mayor he gave me very tymely notice) I have formerly enjoyed the honour of being your servant, if you please to elect me this tyme for one of your burgesses I shall endeavour to be diligent and faithfull in your service and upon all occasions be ready to expresse my further acknowledgments to you." Seal.
"We had yesterday a hearing before the Lords Comissioners for claimes upon ours for the carrying the Canopy over his Majestie at his Coronation, and we having before obtained the favour of his Royall Highnes to send his Secretary to the Comissioners on the Ports behalfes, had judgment that the Portes should performe the service by such as they should appoint, but the Lord Chancellor declared that, as the King had done the Portes that honour to admit them to so noble a service, so he did expect they should discharge it suitable to the magnificence of such a solempne Coronation, and particularly gave it in charge that they should be proper men in respect of their persons that should beare the Canopy, and habited alike suitable to such a great solempnity. And had you heard as we did, how many persons of good quallity were put by from the personall performance of their services when they were such as were about the person of the King and allowed only to act by their deputies appointed by his Majestie, you would have despaired of getting the Portes personally to performe this service, but his Majestie, had so great a respect to the Ports and so expresst his pleasure and his Royall Highnes so improved his interest in the Comissioners, that we had our claimes (when we got to one) readily allowed under that charge. As to our discharge of it, the time for that service is so sudden that we fear that the Portes will be much strainted and therefore we offer it as our humble advice that letters be forthwith sent through the Portes to direct the imediate election of their members, and that therein you would appoint a certaine day for the Barons elected, or so many of them as shall be thought fitt to meete as some convenient place in the Ports next weeke to consult about the performing the service and to appoint a meeting at London, which must be in a short time for we conceive it will be a very difficult matter to gett your apparell made under a more then ordinary time in respect of the multitude of people that will prepare to apparell themselves for this solempnity. The allowance of the canopy staves and bells are referred to the Attorney General whom we are to attend this day and hope we shall speedily effect it but for the scarlett we heare that the King gives no liveries to any and then we cannot expect it for the Portes, but we shall endeavour this day to informe ourselves whether their be any hopes thereof and to get a Warrant from the Lord Chamberlaine for the providing the Canopy." Copy.
1661, April 10.—The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to Sir John Fagge. "This day at an assembly we have made choise of our Maior and you, to be Barons for this Towne at the King's Coronation, to performe that ancient and honourable service of carrying the Canopy over him. And forasmuch as the time is short and the Portes have appointed their Barons to meet on the Exchange in the French Walke by ten of the clocke in the forenoone on Saturday next being the xiijth day of this instant Aprill, in order to the furnishing themselves with apparell suitable." Draft.
"I had not opportunity till now to return my thankful acknowledgments to you for the late favours and kindnes as you have reposed a great trust and confidence in me so you may rest assured of my reall endeavors to serve your Towne (as well in Parliament as on all other occasions) with diligence and integrity, and if at the begining of the Parliament you have particular comands for me, upon advertisment thereof I shal be ready to pursue your directions, in the interim with my prayers to God for the prosperity of your Corporation." Seal.
"I have lately received several schedules containing his Majesty's proclamation prohibiting the planting, setting and growing tobacco in England and Ireland, which I desire you to have duly proclaimed. And inasmuch as the happy time of the coronation of his Majesty now approacheth, I desire you will use your uttermost endeavours that there be such demonstration of your loyalty and affection to his Majesty as may become such a solemnity, and that you will take care that more than ordinary watch be kept about that time that so any disturbance that may happen to be made at such time, when so many of his Majesty's loyal subjects are absent from this abode and at London, may be prevented. You will herewith also receive several briefs of a patent from his Majesty for a collection on a more than ordinary occasion and your furtherance thereof is desired." Copy.
1661, June 7.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye in consideration that three quarters of the lands within the parish of Rye lie without the liberties, some in the hundred of Goldspur and some in the hundred of Gostroe, thereby causing many difficulties, it is conceived fit that Colonel Spencer be entreated to use his interest in procuring his Majesty's charter for annexing the foreign part of the parish unto the liberties of the town. Signed.
1661, June 10.—A Proclamation against Exportation and Buying and Selling of Gold and Silver at higher rates then in our Mint: also against culling, washing or otherwise diminishing our Current Moneys.
I am very sensible of the great and many abuses that have of late years been committed in the fishing on the English coast. "I do hereby strictly charge and command all persons whatsoever within the said jurisdiction henceforth to forbeare to use any unlawfull nettes or engines whatsoever for the taking or catching of fish or to do any undue or unlawful act, whereby the brood or fry of fish may bee any wayes prejudiced or destroyed, or to take or catch any fish at unseasonable tymes contrary to the lawe or the ancient custome in fishing affairs." Copy.
We have received notice from some of the brethren of the Ports that they intend to write to their respective barons in Parliament to endeavour the exemption of the Ports and their members from future taxes imposed on the Counties, as they conceive they ought to be by virtue of their charters, which they are minded to send up to Mr. Thurbane of Sandwich, and therefore we desire no assistance of yours may be wanting therein and the rather for that when formerly upon the granting of subsidies the Ports instead of paying taxes usually received 500li. by way of billet, yet were they then in a far more thriving condition, their trade being very much decayed and places depopulated of late, so that without some such encouragement for persons to live among them their ancient and flourishing Corporation will in short time irreparably come to nothing. Draft.
"I received yours of the 10th of June which came to my hands when I was in the country, as soone as I came to Towne I was not unmindfull of your businesse, but meeting Mr. Coventry at the House enquired of him what was done in the proposition you sent to his Highnesse Royal, who sayd that there was a man of warre sent downe by his Highnesse Royall to hinder those abuses by the French fishing, that they had taken away divers netts and that his Highnesse Royall was sending another." I received last night another letter from Mr. Mayor and the Jurats "I know very well that the Ports are exempt from subsidies and if there be any tax I shall take care of you, but I do not yet heare of any. I must deale clearely with you. I do not think Mr. Thurbane a man so fit to do your businesse because he is not very well liked by many of the House and there is a petition against him, but if anything shall come to him from you I shall assist him the best I can." Seal of arms.
"For your further satisfaction about our billet money you may please to understand that before the raigne of King Henry the seventh the Kings did use to allow the Barons of the Ports, out of every entire fifteenth and tenth, granted by the Laity in Parliament, such reasonable sume as the Ports did demand, and for that some time differences did arise betweene the Ports and the King's Receivers the said King Henry stinted their demands to the some of 500li. and granted them a Privy Seale for the said sume upon consideration that the Ports should put in recognizance to demand no more, which accordingly they did, and so in the reignes of King Henry the eighth, King Edward, Queen Mary, and Queen Elizabeth received thereby the sume aforesaid, but about the latter end of Queen Elizabeth's raigne the Ports obteined her charter for the same which charter was confirmed by King James and King Charles the first. This sume of 500li. useth to be divided among the Ports and their members proportionally according to the number of the shipping which they are to finde by their charter, and every towne for the receiving of his proportion of the said 500li. did give bills under the seale of office of Mayoralty or Bayliage testifying the receit of so much money of certaine persons therein named for such land lying in Kent or Sussex or to that effect, which bills were delivered to the collectors of the subsidies and allowed to them upon their accompt in the Exchequer and this is called billet money or billiting." Copy.
"In answer to all your letters which we have considered you may understand that we doe not thinke the present tyme a fitt season to move ether the King or Parliament for annexing that part of Rye parish that lyes in the county to the Corporation for we are most confident it will not be granted, neither can we at present tell or advise what to doe towards augmenting the value of your vicaridge, the value thereof being 40li per annum, the parsonage but 18li and consequently not comprehended within his Majesty's direction to the Bishops and Deans for augmenting small vicaredges out of great parsonages, yet we had attended the Bishop to have tryed what might have bin down if he had not bin out of Towne, but in our opinion the only way to obtaine some advantage for you in that affaire were to endeavour to get a lease which if you desire we shall waite upon the Bishop about it." Signed, and Seal of Arms broken.
1661, September 7.—A Proclamation for the calling in all moneys of gold and silver coined or stamped with the cross and harp and the circumscription The Commonwealth of England and for making the same to be current only to the first of December next and no longer.
I find by inquiry there is no particular commission issued for receiving the subscriptions for the free and voluntary present to his Majesty within the Liberties of the Cinque Ports, lest the service should suffer by delay I have thought fit to permit the Commissioners of Kent and Sussex to do it, and do desire you that notice may be given of this my permission through the Ports that none may pretend the defence of the liberties of the Ports for obstructing that service. Copy.
1661, October 1.—Warrant to Allen Eades, master of the barque called the Anne and Elizabeth, of Rye, to receive on board his said ship, bound for the Port of Dublin, William and Philip Watson, sons of Thomas Watson, clerk, sometime schoolmaster of the free grammar school in Rye, who were left behind by their said father in May 1658 and have been chargeable to the Parish. And whereas it is reported that the said Thomas Watson, their father, is living and settled in or near Trim, in the County of Westmeath these are to require the said Allen to convey the said William and Philip to Dublin and deliver them to the officers who by law are to convey them to their father to be by him provided for and maintained. Draft.
"I understand that Mr. Richard Spencer whome I formerly recomended to you to serve you as a Baron in Parliament is lately dead, by which that place is become vacant, the same considerations which moved me formerly to recomend to you Mr. Spencer, prevailes with me now to recomend to you Sir John Robinson, Knight and Baronet, Lieutenant of his Majesties Tower of London, whom if you think fitt to elect I make noe doubt but you will be very usefully served by him." Signed. Seal of arms.
1661, November 8.—A proclamation requiring all officers or soldiers that served under the armies of the late usurped Powers and have been disbanded, cashiered or turned out to depart the cities of London and Westminster before the fourth of December next.
"I have been very lately informed that my noble friend, Sir John Robinson, his Majestie's Lieftenant of the Tower of London, hath presented himself unto you to serve in this present Parliament in the place of Mr. Spencer, your late Baron, deceased, I should not have opposed his intentions if I had known them before I declared mine own, yet as election ought to be free I shall most freely leave it to yourselves to arbitrate between us in this present competition. I highly value my friend and yet shall not undervalue your friendship if to those many other obligations wherein I stand ingaged unto you, you shall think fitt to add the choice of me to serve you in this great affair." Seal.
1661, November 20. A Proclamation prohibiting the importation of divers foreign wares and merchandizes into this Realm of England and Dominion of Wales and Sale thereof; and to repress the excess of gilding of coaches and chariots.
"We are very sensible of the decay of the passage trade betweene this place and Dieppe especially since the imposing of the 50 solx per tonne, which we understand both at Dover and Callis the passage barques are freed from. And willing to promote (as in duty bound) the good of the place we live in, we desire your Honor will endeavour the getting off the said 50 solx per tonne from such vessells as come hence to your port with passengers and their goods, and we shall endeavour the taking the same off your passage vesselles that come here, which we hope may be obtained and desire to know that your Honor is affected thereto and whether you conceive it feasible." Draft.
"This towne being scituate on the sea coast and so surrounded with water that the markets with corne as well as other provision are not supplyed neither by reason of our limited jurisdiction (but part of our owne parish being within our Liberty) can we compell any corne to be brought into markett, and by reason some have ingrossed great quantities of corne in their handes and others keepe it up from sale, not only the price is greatly inhaunced, but the poore hereabout reduced to extreame necessity, and without some speedy provision will inevitably famish. And although my selfe and others in Towne would willingly make a stocke to lay in a store for the poore of this place, yet we presume if we should contract for anywhere it may be had, the people would not suffer us to bring it away without license, and if the Justices of the Peace should grant us a License, yet an information may possibly be preferred in the Exchequer for ingrossing, Therefore if your Honor judge it feasible and please to favour me, so as to procure an order from the Lordes of his Majesties most honorable Privy Councell or from his Royall Highnes the Duke of Yorke, our Lord Warden, that what Corne I or my assignes shall buy for the provision of this place, may be permitted to come thence and to be landed at this port, your Honor will do this place in generall an exceeding courtesie." Draft.
That the said Town of Rye anciently had more great guns mounted than any other of the Ports (Dover excepted) which requiring a magazine as well of powder as of other ammunition, upon petition to the Lord Warden hath been favoured with supplies of powder out of the Tower. And whereas the said Town is so much impoverished and decayed that to maintain the carriages of the guns with other ammunition necessary is a very great charge, and yet it stands alike exposed to the often use of them, both for ornament upon festival and other public occasions, and for service as well sometimes for the stop of vessels which might otherwise steal out of the haven without payment of tonnage and customs, as for keeping of the peace when ships of war of several nations with their prizes happen to be together in the harbour and otherwise might quarrel there, contrary to his Majesty's peace, the safety of the Town and the law of nations. May it please you therefore to favour us with the procurement of some barrels of powder out of his Majesty's store in the Tower. Copy.
He says that by virtue of the paper now shewed "at his examination he did goe to sea to take such vessells of Hollanders as he could meete with, which said paper he received of one Captaine Welsh aboute a moneth since, and he saith the vessell he went to sea in is about two tonnes, and that he went to sea with eleven men but he saith that hee never tooke any prize since he had the said paper, and that they came in to this Harbor to take in some of his men, which went ashore at the Nesse. This examinant further saith that they have aboord about 8 or 9 swordes, seven pistolls, five firelockes, and two matchcockes, a halbert, a halfe pike a small quantity of powder and bulletts, and that he this examinant is an English man."
"Having perused the late Act of Parliament concerning fire hearths and stoves, we find a vast disproportion betweene the way of raising his Majesties additional revenue by the said Act and the ancient parliamentary course of Xths and XVths (which we hoped this Parliament would have revived) so that instead of receiving 500li. upon every such taxe, nowe a sume well nigh (if not above) double thereto will yearely for ever be charged upon the Ports and members, if the said Act include us, which under correction we conceive we have some ground to scruple, considering the Cinque Ports are not specified verbally in the said Act, as in the late Act for regulating Corporations which the same Parliament made and intended should reach us, as well as other Corporations, and also remembering how often we and our predecessors in case of briefs, Comissions, &c. have conceived ourselves neither included or injoyned when not expressed, neither in the said Act can we finde any clause of non obstante whereby our liberties, customs and priviledges by the said Act should be impaired in this particular, and suppose the Towne of Barwicke upon Tweed had it beene omitted, although within the Kingdome of England would have beene free from this new kind of taxation. Wherefore although we are assured that you with us (as all loyall and obedyent subjects) are alwaies ready to contribute our due proportions to all publike assessments, when we clearly understand we are thereby duly charged, yet doubt not but you as we, are very tender of addmitting any other taxes or burdens (then by law clearly warranted) upon the inhabitants within your precincts and especially minding the Ports declining state, great decay of trade and poverty of the people, upon the meaner sorte of whom, neverthelesse, this taxe for the most part lyeth. Therefore (notwithstanding any presidents of contrary nature in the monethly taxes during the late times of usurpation, when partly feare of ruine and other preventions occasioned a submission thereto) yet we thought meete as Speaker pro tempore (least we should incurre your deserved blame for neglect thereof) to present these to your introspection and hereby brotherly pray your serious consideration of the premisses, and withall your opinions and subscriptions, whether it would not be expedient for us forthwith joyntly to petition as well his Majesty for his gracious resolution upon the said Act in this case, as his Royall Highnes, our Lord Warden, for his assistance therein and that one or two of each Towne may meete at Romney or such place and time as you shall think fitt, and agree upon for that purpose, with whom we shall willingly joyne or if you shall incline otherwise shall heartily acquiesce with you in paying thereof, yet apprehend we are not by the said Act obliged to send our Accompts to the Forrein Sessions or collect the monies or doe any other thing in pursuance of the said Act, by vertue of any warrant from the forrein Justices as we understand some intend."