Chronicles of the Mayors and Sheriffs of London 1188-1274. Originally published by Trübner, London, 1863.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
In this year, Roger Fitz-Roger was elected Mayor, and that too in his absence; and was afterwards admitted by the King at Rochester. In the same year, on the third day after the Epiphany, the citizens recovered [on appearing] before the King, two kinds of franchise, of which for many years they had been deprived. For the King granted that the Jews, who before had been (fn. 1) held to warranty by writ of the Exchequer, should plead in future before the citizens as to their tenements in London. He also granted that the (fn. 2) Chirographers of the Chest of the Jews should [in future] be (fn. 3) tallaged like other citizens.
In this year, on Sunday in Mid-Lent, nearly all the men, as well as women, of London having met together, in accordance with the precept of his lordship the King, in the Great Hall at Westminster, his lordship the King assumed the Cross with the view of setting out in aid of the Holy Land. It is also to be noted, that after his lordship the King had repeatedly requested the citizens to grant to the Abbot of Westminster the franchises which we have already mentioned in this record, in this year, on the Wednesday, namely, in the week of Pentecost, there was a day of (fn. 4) love appointed, at the demand of his lordship the King, between the citizens and the Abbot; upon which day, the Mayor, and a countless multitude of the citizens with him, came to the New Temple, where the Abbot was, there being also present William de Haverill, the Treasurer, Henry de Ba, Eoger de Turkelby, John de Gatesdene, Justiciars, and others who had been sent thither by the King. Upon these desiring to hold a conference with the Mayor and Aldermen, the whole of the populace opposed it, and would not allow them, without the whole of the commons being present, to treat at all of the matter; all of them exclaiming with one voice that in no point would they recede from their wonted franchises, which, by Charters of his lordship the King and his predecessors, they possessed.
Upon this, a day was given them by the Justiciars to appear before his lordship the King at (fn. 5) Wyndlesore, the Tuesday following, namely; and solely for this reason, the King took the City into his hands, and delivered it to William, the Treasurer, and to Peter Blund, the Constable of the Tower, all the clerks and Serjeants of the Sheriffwick paying obedience to them. On the day appointed, the Mayor and citizens appeared at Wyndlesore; when the King, wishing to harass them, compelled them, through his Justiciars, to shew cause why they had gainsayed the Charter which he had granted to the Abbot of Westminster, and why they had not permitted the men, who by his precept had been placed in inquisition for causing a tumult in the matter between the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Canons of Saint Bartholomew's, to make oath as to the same. For, a short time before this, the said Archbishop wished to hold a visitation among the said Canons, a thing that they would not permit. The citizens however made answer, that they had had no day named for pleading there against the Abbot of Westminster, and that out of the City of London they were not bound to plead; and that if they had been bound to plead thereon, they ought not to receive any judgment as to the same in the absence of their peers, the Earls, namely, [and] Barons of England; as also, that no man of London ought to swear in any inquisition, except in accordance with the oath which he had [already] made to his lordship the King, and in virtue of the fealty in which he is bound to him, unless it be a case where one might lose life or limb, or lose land or gain it. After this, consultation being held between the King and his Council, the City was restored to the citizens, and day was given them until the Translation of Saint Edward [13 October].
In the same year, about the Feast of Saint James [25 July] there came news to London, alas! that the King of France, before-mentioned, had been captured by the Saracens, his brothers and nearly all the Christian army being taken or slain. He himself however, a short time after, was ransomed by the Templars and Hospitallers.