94 Carew v Middleton

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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George Carew of Crowcombe, co. Somerset, gent v Arthur Middleton of the same, fuller

June - November 1637


Carew claimed that he was abused on 30 May 1637 before the people of Crowcombe by Arthur Middleton who called him 'whore-sonne', and 'base Rogue'. Process was granted on 19 June 1637, Dr Merrick presented Carew's libel on 31 October and on 18 November Dr Parry was required to respond on Middleton's behalf; but no further proceedings survive.

Initial proceedings

3/193, Petition to Maltravers

'Your petitioner being a gent of good descent, was, on the 30th day of the moneth of May last past, within the parrish of Crocombe, insufferably disgraced and abused by the lewd tongue of Arthur Middleton of Crocombe, tucker, who amongst many provoking speeches and before many people of the parish called your petitioner whore-sonne, base Rogue, as your petitioner is able to prove by the oaths of sundry credible witnesses.'

Petitioned that Middleton be brought to answer.

Maltravers granted process, 19 June 1637.

12/1u, Citation

Middleton to appear at the suit of Carew for scandalous words provocative of a duel.

Dated: 16 June 1637

Executed: 12 July 1637 by ?Phi? Piddyer.

Introduced: 18 November 1637.

By the special direction of Gilbert Dethick, registrar.

3/124, Defendant's bond

26 October 1637

Bound to appear 'in the Court in the painted Chamber within the palace of Westminster'.

Signed by Arthur Myddelton.

Sealed, subscribed and delivered in the presence of Humphrey Terrick.

The defendant is described here as a yeoman, and the plaintiff as of Carew Castle, co. Pembroke, gent.

Summary of proceedings

Dr Merrick acted as counsel for Carew and Dr Parry for Middleton. On 31 October 1637 Dr Merrick gave the libel for Carew and on 18 November Dr Parry was to respond on Middleton's behalf.


George Carew is not mentioned in the Visitation of 1672 but may have been a younger son or brother of Sir John Carew of Crokam alias Crocombe, knt, who brought a case to the court in 1635: see cause 93.

G. D. Squibb (ed.), The Visitation of Somerset and the City of Bristol, 1672 (Publications of the Harleian Society, new series, 11, 1992), p. 96.


  • Initial proceedings
    • Petition to Maltravers: 3/193 (19 Jun 1637)
    • Citation: 12/1u (12 Jul 1637)
    • Defendant's bond: 3/124 (26 Oct 1637)
  • Proceedings
    • Proceedings before Arundel: 8/26 (14 Oct 1637)
    • Proceedings before Maltravers: 8/27 (14 Oct 1637)
    • Proceedings before Maltravers: 8/28 (31 Oct 1637)
    • Proceedings before Maltravers: 8/29 (18 Nov 1637)

People mentioned in the case

  • Carew, George, gent
  • Carew, John, knight
  • Dethick, Gilbert, registrar
  • Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
  • Howard, Thomas, earl of Arundel and Surrey
  • Merrick, William, lawyer
  • Middleton, Arthur, fuller (also Myddelton)
  • Parry, George, lawyer
  • Piddyer, Phi.
  • Terrick, Humphrey

Places mentioned in the case

  • Middlesex
    • Westminster
  • Somerset
    • Crowcombe

Topics of the case

  • denial of gentility
  • sexual insult