BHO

321 Hunter v Godfrey

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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321 HUNTER V GODFREY

Dorothy Hunter of Whitechapel, London, widow v Thomas Godfrey of Radcliffe, in the parish of Stepney, co. Middlesex, mariner

October - December 1640

Abstract

Dorothy, the widow of William Hunter of Ratcliffe in the parish of Stepney, Middlesex, accused the mariner Thomas Godfrey of murdering her husband at Bantam in the East Indies, beating him so severely during a quarrel that he died afterwards. She complained that she had lost the maintenance of herself and her family out of her husband's wages of 40s per month. Godfrey was bound not to leave the house of Thomas Hanson on Leadenhall Street without permission of the court. Dr Ryves entered the libel on 20 November 1640, but no indication of sentence survives.

Initial proceedings

5/147, Defendant's bond

10 October 1640

Hunter had accused Thomas Godfrey in the Court Military of 'the wilfull killing and murdering of William Hunter her late husband at Bantam in the East Indies or other place beyond the seas.' Godfrey was bound not to leave the house of Thomas Hanson on Leadenhall Street without permission of the court.

Bond to 'appear in the Court in the Painted Chamber within the Pallace of Westminster'.

Signed by Thomas Godfrey (of Radcliffe, in the parish of Stepney, co. Middlesex), sailor, Thomas Hanson (of St Peter's, Cornhill, London, grocer), and John Hawkins (of Stepney), sailor.

Sealed, subscribed and delivered in the presence of John Watson and John Dynham.

5/176, Plaintiff's bond

5 November 1640

Bond to 'appear in the said court in Arundel house in the Strand without Temple Barr London'.

Signed by Thomas Godfrey (of Ratcliffe, in the parish of Stepney, co. Middlesex), sailor, Thomas Hanson (of St Peter's, Cornhill, London, grocer), and Richard Robinson (of All Saints, Barking, London, merchant).

Sealed, subscribed and delivered in the presence of John Watson and John Longland.

Acta (4), fo. 11, Libel

Libel that during a quarrel at Bantam in the East Indies, Thomas Godfrey had beaten her husband so severely that he died afterwards. She maintained she had lost her partner and also the maintenance of herself and family out of her husband's wages of 40s per month.

No date [20 November 1640]

Signed by T. Rives.

Summary of proceedings

Dr Ryves acted as counsel for Hunter and Dr Merrick for Godfrey. On 10 October 1640 Godfrey appeared in person with his counsel Dr Merrick, while Dr Ryves was counsel for Hunter, and Godfrey was required to find sureties for £500.

On 24 October 1640 Hunter produced George Ransom, William Carey and William Younger as witnesses, and the court considered criminal procedure for the case. Dr Ryves gave the libel on 20 November and Dr Merrick was required to respond in December.

Notes

Neither party appeared in the 1633-5 Visitations of London: J. Howard and J. L. Chester (eds.), The Visitation of London in 1633, 1634, and 1635 (Publications of the Harleian Society, 15, 1880); J. J. Howard (ed.), The Visitation of London in 1633, 1634, and 1635 (Publications of the Harleian Society, 17, 1883).

Documents

  • Initial proceedings
    • Defendant's bond: 5/147 (10 Oct 1640)
    • Plaintiff's bond: 5/176 (5 Nov 1640)
    • Libel: Acta (4), fo. 11 (20 Nov 1640)
  • Proceedings
    • Proceedings: 1/11, fos.56r-64v (10 Oct 1640)
    • Proceedings before Stafford: 1/11, fos. 41r-44v (24 Oct 1640)
    • Proceedings: 1/11, fos. 5r-9r (20 Nov 1640)
    • Proceedings before Maltravers: 1/11, fos. 79r-87v (4 Dec 1640)

People mentioned in the case

  • Carey, William
  • Dynham, John
  • Godfrey, Thomas, mariner
  • Hanson, Thomas, grocer
  • Hawkins, John, mariner
  • Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
  • Howard, William, baron Stafford
  • Hunter, Dorothy, widow
  • Merrick, William, lawyer
  • Ransom, George
  • Robinson, Richard
  • Ryves, Thomas, lawyer (also Rives)
  • Watson, John
  • Younger, William

Places mentioned in the case

  • London
    • All Saints, Barking
    • Arundel House
    • Strand
    • Temple Bar
    • Leadenhall Street
    • St Peter's Cornhill
    • Whitechapel
  • Middlesex
    • Ratcliffe
    • Stepney
    • Westminster

Topics of the case

  • assault
  • allegation of murder