Acts and Ordinances of the Interregnum, 1642-1660. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1911.
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The name and title abolished.; The Lands possessions and evidences of Bishops setled in Trustees.; Trustees names.; The Lands which the Bishops held of the King to be holden as of the Mannor of East Green wich in soccage.; And the Lands holden of other Lords, to be holden by the Rents and Services accustomed.; And discharged of Tithes.; The Trustees to name Surveyors.; To put the deeds in safe custody.
For the abolishing of Archbishops and Bishops, and providing for the payment of the just and necessary debts of the Kingdom, into which the same hath been drawn by a War, mainly promoted by and in favour of the said Archbishops, and Bishops, and other their Adherents, and Dependents; Be it Ordained, and it is Ordained by the Lords and Commons in Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same; That the Name, Title, Stile, and Dignity of Archbishop of Canterbury, Archbishop of York, Bishop of Winchester, Bishop of Duresme, and of all other Bishops of any Bishopricks within the Kingdom of England, and Dominion of Wales, be from and after the fifth day of September in the year of our Lord God, 1646. wholly abolished and taken away, and are hereby abolished and taken away. And all and every person and persons are and be thenceforth disabled to hold the place, function, or stile of Archbishop, or Bishop of any Church, Sea, or Diocess, now established or erected, or to be established or erected within the Kingdom of England, Dominion of Wales, or Town of Berwick, or to use or put in use any Archiepiscopal or Episcopal Jurisdiction, or authority, by force of any Letters Patents from the Crown, made or to be made, or by any other authority whatsoever, any Law, Statute, Usage, or Custom to the contrary notwithstanding. And be it further Ordained, and it is hereby Ordained, that all Counties Palatine, Honors, Mannors, Lordships, Scites, Circuits, Precincts, Castles, Granges, Messuages, Mils, Lands, Tenements, Meddows, Pastures, Parsonages, appropriate Tithes, Oblations, Obventions, Pensions, Portions of Tithes, Parsonages, Vicarrages, Churches, Chappels, Advowsons, Donatives, Nominations, Rights of Patronage and Presentation, Parks, Woods, Rents, Reversions, Services, Annuities, Franchises, Liberties, Priviledges, Immunities, Rights of Action and of Entry, Interests, Titles of Entry, Conditions, Commons, Courts Leet, and Courts Baron; and all other possessions and Hereditaments whatsoever, with all and every of their appurtenances of what nature or quality soever they be, which now are, or at any time within ten years before the beginning of this Present Parliament, were belonging to the said Archbishops or Bishops, Archbishopricks, or Bishopricks or any of them which they, or any of them had held and enjoyed in the Right of their Archbishopricks, or Bishopricks, Dignities, Offices, or Places respectively; together with all Charters, Deeds, Books, Accounts, Rolls, and other Writings and Evidences whatsoever, concerning the premisses, or any of them, which do belong to any the said Archbishops, or Bishops, Archbishopricks & Bishopricks are vested and setled, adjudged and deemed to be, and are hereby in the real and actual possession and seisin of Thomas Adams Alderman, now Lord Mayor of the City of London, Sir John Wollaston Knight, Sir George Clark Knight, John Langham Alderman, John Fowke Alderman, James Bunce Alderman, William Gibbes Alderman, Sam. Avery Ald. Tho. Noel Christopher Pack, John Bellamy, Edward Hooker, Thomas Arnold, Richard Glide, William Hobson, Francis Ash, John Babington, Laurence Bromfield, Alexander Jones, John Jones, Richard Venner, Stephen Estwick, Robert Mead, and James Story, their Heirs and Assigns; And that they the said Thomas Adams, now Lord Mayor of the of City London, Sir John Wollaston Knight, Sir George Clark Knight, John Langham Alderman, John Fowke Alderman, James Bunce Alderman, William Gibbes Alderman, Samuel Avery Alderman, Thomas Noel, Christopher Pack, John Bellamy, Edward Hooker, Thomas Arnold, Richard Glide, William Hobson, Francis Ash, John Babington, Laurence Bromfield, Allexander Jones, John Jones, Richard Venner, Stephen Estwick, Robert Mead, and James Story, and the Surviver and Survivers of them and their Heirs, and Assigns, shall hold all such the premisses as are now held of the King, of the King his Heirs and Successours, as of his Mannor of East Greenwitch, in Fee and common soccage by fealty, and the Annual Rents therefore respectively due, and payable within ten years last past, before the beginning of this present Parliament, and not in Capite nor by other Tenures, or Services; and shall hold all and every the premisses which the said Archbishops, and Bishops, held of any other then of the King, by the Rents, and other Services therefore due, and of right accustomed; And the said Trustees, their Heirs, Assigns, Farmers, and Tenants, shall also have, hold, and enjoy the premisses, and every of them freed, acquitted and discharged of, and from the payment of Tithes, as fully as the said Archbishops, and Bishops did hold and enjoy, or ought to hold and enjoy the same, at any time during the space of ten years aforementioned, or any time since. And it is further by the same authority Ordained, that the said Trustees, shall have power and are authorized, to make, nominate, and appoint from time to time, fit and able persons, such as they shall think fit, to survey the premisses in any County or Counties of England and Wales, and to hold Court of Surveys and to demand, receive, and in safe custody to put all the said Charters, deeds, books, accompts, rolls, writings, and evidences, that they may be put in such place in the City of London, as the said persons beforenamed, or the major part of them shall order and appoint; And the said Trustees or any three or more of them, as aforesaid, are hereby authorized and required to administer an Oath unto all and every the Surveyors, who shall take the same before he shall execute the said place in these words, viz.
I A. B. do swear, that I will faithfully and truely according to my best skill and knowledge, execute the place of a Surveyor, according to the purport of an Ordinance, entituled, An Ordinance of Parliament for the abolishing of Archbishops and Bishops within the Kingdom of England and Dominion of Wales, and for setling of their Lands and possessions, upon Trustees, for the use of the Commonwealth. I shall use my best endeavour and skill to discover the estates therein mentioned, and every part thereof, which shall be given me in charge, and to finde out the true values and improvements thereof, and thereof shall make true particulars, according to my best skill and cunning; and the same from time to time deliver in writing close sealed up, unto the said Trustees, or any two of them, according to the true intent and meaning of the said Ordinance; and this I shall justly and faithfully execute, without any gift or reward, directly or indirectly, from any person or persons whatsoever.
The Trust.; Due respect to Tenants.; Leases not exceeding three lives of one and twenty years, whereupon the old rent is reserved, are not to be avoided.; Leases made since the first of December, 1641, by Bishops to be void.; Those that have surrendred their old since December 1641. shall enjoy their old Leases.; Saving the right of all persons other then the King and Bishops.; Saving to such persons as have adhered to the Parliament, such estates as they have forfeited for non-payment of Rent.; Duresmehouse.
Nevertheless it is declared and ordained, that the said persons before named, their Heirs and Assigns, shall have and hold the premisses and every of them subject to such trusts and confidence as both Houses of Parliament shall appoint, and declare and dispose of the same, and the Rents and Profits thereof, as the said Houses shall order and appoint; wherein the Lords and Commons do declare, that due respect shall be had towards such persons and their assigns as are interested in the premisses by vertue of any demise heretofore made, Provided that the said Trustees their Heirs or Assigns shall not avoid any leases made for any Term or Estate, not exceeding three lives, or one and twenty years in possession, or in such manner as that together with the lease in being shall not exceed three lives or one and twenty years, so as the old and accustomed rent and rents, or so much rent and rents, as the antient and accustomed rent amounteth unto, be reserved payable during the said voidable Term and Terms or estates, and so as the said Leases have not been procured or purchased of any Bishop, since the first day of December, Anno. Domini. 1641. And be it further Ordained by the authority aforesaid, that if any Archbishop, or Bishop, have at any time since the first day of December, Anno Domini. 1641. made any grant or lease to any person or persons, body politique or corporate, of any the Honors, Mannors, Lordships, Messuages, Lands, Tenements, and Hereditaments, or any other the premisses aforesaid, or any of them in right of their Archbishopricks or Bishopricks, the same grant or lease shall be utterly void and of none effect; and the person or persons, body politique or Corporate unto whom the same was made, shall have no benefit thereby: Provided and be it ordained, and it is hereby ordained, that if any person or persons, body politique or Corporate, at any time or times since the first day of December, in the year of our Lord God, 1641. who had any grant or lease for one or more life, or lives, or any number of years of the premisses, or any part thereof, as is aforesaid, and surrendred the same; to the end that he or they might have a new grant or lease granted or made unto him or them, which by this present Ordinance is made void, and the same was accordingly granted or made unto him or them; That the said person or persons, body politique or corporate, who hath so surrendred any such former grant or lease, his and their Heirs, Successours, Executors, Administrators, and Assigns, shall have, hold, possess, and enjoy, such time and term, as he or they had in any part of the said premisses by vertue of any such former grant, or lease, in such sort and manner as he or they should have had, held, and enjoyed the same, if no such surrender had been made, subject nevertheless to such payments of rent and other services, and such covenants, conditions, and agreements as in the said former Grants or Leases were expressed and contained, saving unto all and every person and persons, their Heirs, Executors, and Administrators bodies politique and corporate, and their Successors, other then the King, his Heirs and Successors, all Archbishops, and Bishops, and other then the founders and donors as founders and donors of and to the said Archbishopricks, and Bishopricks, and their Heirs, all such right, title, interest possession, rights in Law, or equity, entries, annuities, com modities, fees, and other profits which they or any of them before the said first day of December, 1641. ought lawfully to have had in or to the Premisses, or any part or parcel thereof, as if this Ordinance had never been had or made; also saving to all such person or persons as have adhered to the Parliament, all such estate as he or they since the first day of May, Anno Dom. 1641. have forfeited or made forfeitable, for non-payment of Rent, or not performing of services to any Bishop or Bishops, except it be in the case of a Lease made utterly void by this Ordinance, by reason the same hath been procured or purchased of any Bishop since the aforesaid first day of December, Anno Dom. 1641. and likewise saving to Philip Earl of Pembroke & Montgomery, and his Heirs, all such right as he and they have to the Messuage called Duresme-House, and certain Stables, late of the possessions of Thomas Bishop of Duresme, scituate in the Parish of St. Martins in the Fields, in the County of Middlesex, lately granted by Act of this present Parliament; this present Ordinance, or any thing therein contained in any wise notwithstanding.
Provided also, and it is hereby further ordained by the Authority aforesaid, That all and singular Revenues, Rents, Issues, Fees, Profits, sums of Money, and allowances whatsoever, as have heretofore been, and now ought to be paid, disposed and allowed unto, and for the maintenance of any Grammar School, or Schollers, or for or toward the reparation of any Church, Chappel, High-way, Cause-way, Bridges, School-house, Almes-house, or any other charitable or pious use, or for maintaining of any Lecture, or Preachers, payable out of any the Premisses, or which are chargeable, or ought to issue out of, or to be paid for, or in respect of the said Premisses, or any of them, shall be, and continue to be paid and allowed as they were and have been heretofore, any thing in this present Ordinance to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding. And it is further Ordained, That the Sheriff of every County and Place, who is to attend the respective Courts where any Felony is to be tryed and determined, shall provide and present to the Judge or Judges of such Courts, some able and fit person to do such things as by the Office of the Ordinary have been used to be done; which person and persons shall have Authority, and are hereby enjoyned to perform that service in such manner as the respective Ordinaries heretofore have used to do. Provided also, That all Commissions upon the Statute of charitable uses, shall be valid, though the Bishop be therein omitted, and the other Commissioners shall proceed therein as fully as they might have heretofore done when the Bishop was therein named; and that all Issues triable by the Ordinary or Bishop, shall be tried by Jury in usual course.