Calendar of Letter-Books of the City of London: G, 1352-1374. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1905.
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Reply of the Mayor and Aldermen to the above to the effect that the Commonalty must state their wishes (lour entente) more explicitly. Accordingly, on Saturday after the Feast of St. Nicholas [6 Dec.], they proffered their declaration to the said Mayor and Aldermen, as recorded on the second folio following, to which declaration the Mayor and Aldermen made a reply on the following Thursday, as recorded on the third folio following.
Folio cxli b.
Pleas held before Adam de Bury, the Mayor, and Aldermen, and an immense Commonalty, in the Guildhall, on Tuesday the morrow of St. Martin [11 Nov.], 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364], when John Ryghtwys and John Penrose, taverners, were attached to answer a charge of having sold unwholesome wine. The surveyors of the sale of wine in the City, viz., Geoffrey de Newtone, Robert de la More, Henry de Boseworth, and Thomas Cornwaleys, claimed to have cognizance of the matter, and they found John Ryghtwys not guilty, but John Penrose guilty. The latter was accordingly condemned to drink a draught of his own wine, the remainder to be poured on his head, and he was to forswear the calling of vintner unless he obtained the King's favour.
Afterwards, viz., on Monday after the Feast of St. Matthias [24 Feb.], 43 Edward III. [A.D. 1368-9], came the above John Penrose in full Husting, before Simon de Mordone, the Mayor, the Aldermen, and John de Cauntebrigge, the Chamberlain, and asked to be admitted to his trade, &c. And he was admitted and sworn, &c.
Folio cxlii b-cxliii.
Declaration of the wishes (entente) of the Commons touching those to be received into the franchises of the City, to the effect that whereas there were only three ways whereby the said franchises could be obtained, viz., by birth, apprenticeship, or by presentment of some mistery before the Mayor, Aldermen, and Chamberlain, sufficient satisfaction being made to the Chamber at discretion, those who obtain the franchise by birth ought not to pay fine or other service according to ancient custom, except that when they become of full age they ought to take the same oath as other freemen, for many of them think they are not bound to maintain the franchises because they have not been sworn. (fn. 1)
Also as touching apprentices, the Commons think it reasonable that they should not be received, except with the testimony of their masters that they had faithfully served in their misteries seven years at least.
Also it seems right that every one who is enfranchised ought to buy and sell wholesale, within the City and without, any manner of merchandise on which he can make a profit; but he may keep a shop and sell by retail only those goods that belong to his own particular mistery, which he ought to support whenever necessary. This they believe to have been the intention of their ancestors of old; but these ancient usages had been allowed to lapse, whereby the good misteries which used to maintain the City are likely to be hopelessly destroyed unless speedy steps be taken to guard against it.
Also it seems to the Commons advisable that at least one day in each month should be set aside for hearing and determining the affairs of the Commons, when the Aldermen and rulers of each mistery should meet for the purpose. These days, which might reasonably be called "Gildedaies" to distinguish them from others, should be fixed, and on these days alone they think that persons should be admitted to the freedom, after serving in the same mistery for at least seven years, and on payment of 60s. or more at the discretion of those present on the day. For it were better that those unable to pay this sum should continue to serve others, either as apprentices or as hired servants, than that the number of masters should be unduly increased.
Also the Commons make it known that they suggest these articles for God's glory and for the general profit of the City, and in order to restore the good old franchises and usages in their ancient force and perfection; but in this they are hindered by the excessive privileges accorded by the King to foreigners, who are the source of all the evils that have occurred to the City.
Folio cxliii b.
The above declaration having been seen and fully examined before the Mayor and Aldermen in the presence of the Commonalty, it was decreed that all the articles therein contained should be observed and used in future, viz., that the first article, touching those who obtain the freedom by birth, be accepted as it stood; that the second article, touching the enfranchisement of apprentices, be accepted, so that whenever a master comes to enfranchise his apprentice the Mayor shall summon the rulers and governors of his mistery to appear on a certain day before him and the Aldermen and the Chamberlain, and if they come not, then it shall be lawful for the Mayor, Aldermen, and Chamberlain to enfranchise him, and if they come and know no cause why he should not be enfranchised, let the apprentice himself be asked if he is willing, and if they know nothing against it, let them receive him into the franchise on the testimony of his master as of old accustomed; and as touching those who ought in other manner to be admitted, it is decreed that in future no one ought to be admitted otherwise than as contained in the article on the point, saving only that the Mayor and Aldermen do not assent to the suggestion that the "Geldedayes" should be fixed, but think that they should be at the discretion of the Mayor; but as to the other articles, touching the holding of shops and dealing by wholesale and retail, they think it better to postpone consideration.
[Folios cxliv-cxlv blank.]
Folio cxlv b.
Be it remembered that in the quinzaine of St. Martin [11 Nov.], 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364], Richard de Claverynge, draper, showed to Adam de Bury, the Mayor, and John de Cauntebrigge, the Chamberlain, that John de Hatfeld, late chandler, left by will certain goods and chattels to Dionisia his daughter; (fn. 2) that he had himself married the said Dionisia, and was ready to give security for the said goods and chattels pursuant to the terms of the said will; and he asked that Robert Kyng, one of the executors of John de Hatfeld, who had possession of the goods, might be summoned. The said Robert, appearing in Court, declared that the goods had been left to the said Dionisia on her attaining the age of sixteen years, with remainder over in case of her dying before reaching that age, and that she was now under sixteen years by a year and a half, and he brought the goods into court, which were thereupon delivered by the Mayor and Chamberlain to the said Richard to safeguard until the said Dionisia was sixteen years old Surety for the said Richard, viz., Ralph de Cantebrigge.
Afterwards, viz., on the 1st March, 41 Edward III. [A.D. 1366-1367], came the above Richard before John Lovekyn, the Mayor, the Aldermen, and the Chamberlain, and said that he had married the above Dionisia, who was now more than sixteen years of age, and asked that he and his surety might be discharged.
Letters patent nominating Henry Grene, Robert de Thorpe, Adam de Bury, the Mayor, John Knyvet, and Thomas de Ludelowe, or any four, three, or two (whereof the Mayor is to be one), to be commissioners for gaol-delivery of Neugate. Witness the King at Westminster, 10 Dec., 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364].
Bond by Margaret, relict of Cristian de la Bonegarde, weaver, late of Bruges, and William St. Thomas, kinsman of the said Cristian, in the sum of £40, English coinage, in favour of William le Mayr, Danyel le Hert, Michael Momart, Matthew de Wale, Gosewyn van Denocker, Nicholas Plomer, and John Meryn, the same to be paid on the Feast of St. Barnabas next [11 June]. Witnesses, Geoffrey de Dittone, Richard Barber, John Kempe, "Levyn" (?) de Cray, William Canell, and others [not named]. Dated at London, 29 May, A.D. 1364.
Folio cxlvi b.
Writ to the Sheriffs to make proclamation for the due observance of the ordinance forbidding any one to carry money out of the kingdom, except merchants who required the same for their business, or to carry any Bull or other instrument prejudicial to the King to or from the Court of Rome. Dated at Westminster, 12 Dec., 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364].
Writ to the Sheriffs for the election of four: citizens to attend a Parliament to be held at Westminster in the octave of St. Hillary [13 Jan.]. (fn. 3) Witness the King at Westminster, 4 Dec., 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364].
Folio cxlvii b.
Writ of Privy Seal to the Sheriffs that they charge hostelers not to take in any stranger unless they be ready to answer for the conduct of those they harbour for the preservation of the peace. Dated at the Castle of Wyndesore, 20 Dec., 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364].
A general release by John Pecche, draper, to John "Aspelond" de Wymyngtone, his late apprentice. Witnesses, Adam de Bury, Adam Fraunceys, and Thomas de Lodelowe. Dated 13 Dec., 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364].
Afterwards, viz., on the 13th March, 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364-5], came the above John "Aspelon" before Adam Fraunceys and Thomas de Lodelowe, the Recorder, and declared himself ready to restore any goods and chattels that the above John Pecche could prove he had taken away, and bound himself to give the names of any servants of the said John Pecche who may have removed the goods of their master.
Folio cxlviii b.
John de Allesford, of the county of Southampton, (fn. 4) attached the 8th Jan., 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364-5], and condemned to the pillory for pretending to be a summoner of the King and the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Ordinances of the Plumbers. (fn. 5)
24th Jan., 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364-5], Richard atte Dyche and Thomas Beauchamp elected to survey and examine the mistery of Plumbers, and see that it be well governed and present misdoers to the Mayor and Aldermen without concealment.
Folio cxlix b.
At the Husting for Pleas of Land held on Monday after the Feast of St. Andrew [30 Nov.], 38 Edward III. [A.D. 1364], William Prestmede, the chantry priest of Hamo Box in the Church of St. Michael on Cornhulle, brought a plaint of intrusion against William Fourneux and others [not named], touching 5 marks rent in the parish of St. Michael aforesaid. Thereupon William Fourneux appeared before the Sheriffs and Coroner on the following Saturday, and said that he was tenant of the messuage out of which the said rent arose, which he held conjointly with Margaret his wife by gift of Richard Savage, Rector of the Church of St. Michael aforesaid, and of William de Cotenham, clerk, made under the name of William Spencer, "pessoner," and Margaret his wife, and that the aforesaid Margaret was not named in the bill, and he produced the deed of gift. And forasmuch as the said chaplain could not deny the deed, he was adjudged to take nothing by his bill, &c.
Afterwards, in the Husting for Common Pleas held on Monday after the Feast of the Conception B. M. [8 Dec.], the same year, the said chaplain brought a bill of intrusion touching a free tenement in the above parish against the above William Spencer, Margaret his wife, Peter Vyvyan and Margery his wife, John Blokle, and William Spark, who declared before the Mayor and Aldermen in the Chamber of the Guildhall that they were maliciously impleaded, inasmuch as the said chaplain was seised of the aforesaid rents at will. Thereupon, the parties being examined, the chaplain declared that he had been disseised of the rent, and demanded arrears due since the decease of Richard Godewyn, chaplain, his predecessor, to the amount of 7½ marks, and damages. The defendants being unable to deny that the annual rent of 5 marks was due, it was agreed that the chaplain should have the rent and damages taxed at 2 marks, and that all arrears should be expended for the good of the soul of Hamo Box, a recognizance being entered into to carry the same into effect.
Afterwards, viz., on Thursday after the octave of St. Michael [29 Sept.], 40 Edward III. [A.D. 1366], all the parties aforesaid came before John Lovekyn, the Mayor, the Aldermen, and Chamberlain, and asked that the above recognizance might be annulled, as all the conditions had been carried out.
Ordinance by the Mayor and Aldermen that in future there should be elected two drapers, two fullers, and two weavers to survey their several misteries and present misdoers to the Mayor for punishment.
Folio cl b.
22 March, 39 Edward III. [A.D. 1364-5], the guardianship of Simon, son of Thomas Leggy, (fn. 6) late skinner, aged thirteen years, committed by Adam de Bury, the Mayor, the Aldermen, and John de Cauntebrigge, the Chamberlain, to Adam Fraunceys. Sureties, viz., John Lovekyn, senior, and James Andrew, draper, Aldermen.
Petition of the Mayor, Aldermen, and Commonalty to the King and Council for restitution of the City's franchises, (fn. 7) the loss of which had driven many to leave the City and take up their quarters at Westminster, St. Martin le Grand, and elsewhere. [No date].