Calendar of the Plea and Memoranda Rolls of the City of London: Volume 3, 1381-1412. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1932.
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ROLL A 28
Giles Combmaker was mainprised by John Ridale and John Marchal, tailors, Ralph Clopham, weaver, and Henry Charles to keep the peace with John Combere, who was likewise mainprised by Simon Gardiner, John Hayne, John Kempe and Laurence Folk.
Brother Thomas Peverell of the order of the Carmelites was mainprised by James Bilyngford and John Baldok, upholder, for his appearance before the Mayor and Aldermen on reasonable summons, under penalty of £100.
Richard Burnham, rector of the church of Holy Trinity the Less, was mainprised by Roger Wilford and Roger Torgold to keep the peace with Robert Lyndeseye, draper, who was likewise mainprised by William Ketill, spurrier, and William Shelbourne, haberdasher.
Membr. 1 b
John Keteryng, apprentice of Richard Virly, was committed to prison for non-payment of 8 marks, which he was fined for divers trespasses against his master, as appears by the bill and inquisition thereon, and also on account of fornication in his master's house (fn. 1), wherein judgment is still to be given.
John Bradeley, leatherseller, was committed to prison for 20 marks, due on a bond to John Wells, in which he was condemned. He was released on Good Friday (fn. 2) 1387 by consent of the creditor.
Bond of Henry Yevele (fn. 3), mason and citizen of London, to Maud Holbech and Stephen Speleman in 20 marks, that neither he nor his brother, Richard Foun, would cause her or her heirs or executors or the feoffees of her lands and tenements in the parishes of St Aldburgh in Bisshopesgatestrete, St Martin Pomeres in Ismongerlane and St Peter in Bradstrete, any loss by suing on a recognisance which had been made in Chancery to them by Henry atte Mersshe, former tenant of the above-named properties.
Reciprocal quitclaims between Robert de Draycote, prior of the hospital of St Mary within Cripplegate, and the convent of the same on the one part, and John Cyfrewast, knight, and Katerine his wife, formerly wife of the late Adam Stable, mercer, on the other.
Membr. 2 b
Richard Haydok, John Andrew, Richard Pattesle, Thomas Jevek, John Lucas, William Wittenhale, vintners of the west (of Walbrook), and Thomas Hayward, Thomas Neel, John Wakelee, Richard Cokham, Thomas Bette and John Wilyngham, vintners of the east, were sworn to make scrutiny of wines and to pour out all such as they found corrupt and unhealthy.
Acquittance from William Rasyn and Isabella Norable, his wife (fn. 4), daughter of Richard de Chaddeslee, to Richard Horn, clerk, and Robert West, executors of Richard de Chaddeslee, for the handing over of 100 marks, a small mazer with a covercle of mazer, bound with silvergilt, four plain pieces of silver of one set with a covercle to the same (fn. 5) and one second best bed, which goods the said Richard left to Isabella Norable for her marriage. Dated 22 Dec. 1386.
Bond, reciting that Stephen Sewale, grocer, had been merchant, factor and attorney of Geoffrey Crymelford, grocer, during the time that he was the latter's apprentice, and had entered into bonds on behalf of his master and himself at home and abroad, whereof he had rendered account before Richard Hatfeld, Thomas Otteley, Richard Toky and William Waddesworth, arbitrators appointed by the mayor, when it was found that Geoffrey Crymelford had already paid all that Stephen Sewale could claim against him. In order that the master might have security against any further claims arising from the apprentice's trading on his behalf, the said Stephen, together with Sewale Hoddesdon and Robert Sewale, fishmongers, and John Killom bind themselves in £100 that Stephen will acquit his late master of all such claims and will bring letters under the authentic seals of Bruges and Middelburgh, witnessing by proclamation at Middelburgh that he had given satisfaction to all those to whom his master had been indebted by reason of his business dealings, which could be verified by the law merchant, during the time of the war between England and Flanders and for the year ensuing, and further that he would indemnify his master against any loss in the meantime. Dated 12 Feb. 1387.
Memorandum that Bernard Blessyng, merchant of Bohemia, had in the house of Walter Pouke the following goods: 600 white plates (albas platas) (fn. 6), 50 long plates, 33 plates for the breast, 4 barrels of wine called "galantwyn (fn. 7)," 5 barrels of beer, one basenet (fn. 8), one long table with a pair of threelegged stools (cum part tripedum), one stool, one corndish, one axe and a pewter pot, and that on 16 March he proved these goods to be his own by (oath of) John Huwet and John Mundam (fn. 9), and that no one had any part therein to the value of 4d, according to the custom of the city of London. And accordingly the goods were delivered to him.
Francis Vyncheguerre, merchant of Lucca, by John Hende, his attorney, obtained judgment against Bartholomew de Bosano, merchant of Lucca, for £47, arrears of £70 due on a bond of 17 July 1374 and payable at Michaelmas the same year, together with 13s 4d damages. The defendant was committed to prison. Afterwards on the same day John Hende granted that he should have a day of payment and be delivered from prison. Thereupon the said Bartholomew, together with Richard Forster, entered into a recognisance for payment of £27 13s 4d at Easter and £20 at Midsummer.
Salomon Salomon, mercer, acknowledged receipt of a bale of mercery, value £40, from John Chircheman and John Organ, collectors of the king's custom of 12d the £ of merchandise in the port of London, and undertook to save them harmless for the space of a year against all claims concerning the same.
Membr. 3 b
Stephen Aphowell of Kaermerdyn (fn. 10) with other good men of the same town came here and claimed to be quit of paying custom in London. The payment of 2d the fardel (fn. 11) of cloth as custom was put in suspense until Easter, in order that the court might be advised in the meantime as to whether, according to the charters of the king produced by them in court, they were subject to the payment of such custom or not.
Robert Draycote, prior of the hospital of the Blessed Mary of Elsyngspitel within Crepulgate, brought a bill of complaint that he had let a tenement with sollars and other appurtenances in the parish of our Lady atte Bowe for a year from Christmas to Christmas to John Bradlee and Janyn his servant, and that on Wednesday before Michaelmas they had cut down and carried away, by force and arms, i.e. with axes, a counter in a shop for drapery (fn. 12), value 13s 4d; a pavement of Flaundrestill (fn. 13) in a large chamber, 50s; a parclos (fn. 14) of Estrichbord (fn. 15) 13 feet long in another chamber, 40s; 3 locks and 4 iron bolts, 3s 4d; another parclos in an entrance (en un huys) 24 feet long standing in the said great chamber, 40s; a cuppebord of Estrichbord for the parlour, 40d; a creste (fn. 16) of Estrichbord over the speer (fn. 17) in the same parlour, 8d; and a rierdos (fn. 18) of Estrichbord 18 feet long, 13s 4d; all being fixtures (fn. 19) of the free tenement of the said prior; and also a great quantity of Maydeston stone to the value of 40s, which trespass they continued until last Christmas, against the peace and the ordinance made thereon, and to the damage of the prior £100. [French]
The Mayor and Aldermen visited the tenement on 20 March and in the presence of the prior and the said Janyn, who made no defence, found the bill to be true. It was considered that the prior recover against the said Janyn the sum of 10 marks. The same day, out of reverence for the Mayor and Aldermen, the prior granted that if Janyn would replace the Flemish tiles and clear away all the stinking dung, rubbish and filth out of the tenement before Whitsuntide, he would condone the 10 marks. For greater security John Selton, tailor, and William Coventre, pinner, undertook to perform these conditions if the said Janyn failed to do so. Memorandum that judgment was not given against John Bradlee, who did not appear, because he was in prison.
Recognisance by Thomas Girdeler, citizen of London, to pay John Hauley of Dartmouth, master of the "Seynt Marie" of Dartmouth, for the freight of 86 tuns of red Bordeaux wine at the rate of 27s a tun, the last payment to be made before Michaelmas. [French]
Membr. 4 b
Memorandum that whereas Francis Wincheguerre of Lucca bought from Lord de Neville certain tallies, with which tallies he bought wool at Hull, and whereas Lord de Neville suggested that this wool belonged to Matthew Cheynyn of Florence, the Mayor and Aldermen, on the petition of the said Matthew, summoned Bernard Antonii of Florence, broker, to the Guildhall and asked him to tell all he knew about the buying of the wool. The broker answered on oath as follows: Lord de Neville sold these tallies of the king; amounting to more than £400, to Francis Wincheguerre, who asked the witness to take them to Hull and buy wool with them to that value or beyond. Matthew Cheynyn, hearing that he was going to Hull, also asked him to take a king's tally of £100 and buy wool for him. When he arrived in Hull, the king's customs-officer showed him some wool, but would not strike a bargain because he was himself coming to London in a fortnight and wanted to talk with the principals about the bargain, so that the witness had his journey for nothing. However, when the customs-officer came to London, Francis Wincheguerre, by the witness' agency, bought from him 30 sarplers of wool, 20 of one sort and 10 of another; which amounted to far more than the value of the tallies, whereupon he paid him the balance and everything was settled. It was not true that the petitioner, Matthew Cheynyn, had any part or share in this purchase of wool from Walter Frost.
In an action for debt of £80 due on a bond of Robert de Caunbrugge and William Palmere, executors of Henry Bever, late rector of St Peter of Bradstret, against John Leveryngton, in which the defendant made four defaults, his tenement in the parish of St Stephen Colmanstret was delivered to the plaintiffs as a foreign attachment to hold till the debt was satisfied. A jury of twelve good men of the venue said that the tenement was a brewhouse with three shops annexed of a net annual value of £5 6s 8d, but that the premises were ruinous and that the repairs would cost the first year's annual value. The court allowed the first year's rent for repairs.
William Grevell of Campeden paid into court the sum of 20 marks which he owed to William Vale, fishmonger, for two lasts (fn. 20) of herrings.
Writ demanding the tenor of the will (fn. 21) of John Byker, late artilleryman in the Tower, as enrolled in the Husting on 19 July 1361.
Membr. 5 b
Memorandum that Richard Hatfeld, pepperer, demanded against John Slegh, the king's butler (fn. 22), the sum of 17 marks for two tuns of wine, bought by the latter's servant Richard Wellesbourne on 9 Feb. 1385. After four defaults the defendant sent the money on 9 July 1386 and asked that it might be reserved in court till he could appear. Nevertheless on 10 July it was delivered by order of the mayor and William Cheyne, recorder, to the plaintiff, under mainprise of Geoffrey Adam and John Clopton, pepperer, to answer therefor etc.
Memorandum that Andrew Michel, Lombard, in the ninth year of the present reign contributed £8 to a loan of £4000 to the king, which £8 William Grevel of Caumpeden arrested in the hands of Richard Odyham, the chamberlain, in part payment of a larger sum owed to him by the said Andrew. The money was delivered to William Grevel, in virtue of this arrest, and the chamberlain went quit as regards the said Andrew.
Letter of attorney from John Proude, master and governor of the ship "Katerine" of Dartmouth, to Thomas Girdeler of London to receive from Ramon Monedeys, burgess of Bordeaux, certain sums for freightage, which he had recovered by proceedings in the Sheriffs' Court.
Acquittance from Thomas Noket, citizen of London, John Reche and Richard Palmer of Langedon to Aubrey de Veer, knight, and William Tasburgh, chaplain, for the receipt of £100 in part payment of a debt of 800 marks.
Quitclaim from Thomas Bonde, vicar of South Mymmes (fn. 23) co. Middlesex, to John Symond, chandler, and Alice his wife, widow of Robert Rotheley, chandler.
Membr. 6 b–7
This day William Prophet, mariner, of Westlenne, plaintiff, offered himself against William Jay of Swynesheved (fn. 24), merchant, who had this day by foreign attachment, according to the custom of the city, in a plea of debt on demand of £7 12s 6d. By his bill of complaint, the plaintiff alleged that on 8 Oct. last at Wasshecrosse near Fossedyke (fn. 25) the defendant freighted his ship " Seintemariebote" with 30 weys of salt to be carried to London at 5s the wey, which salt the plaintiff carried to London, where the defendant unloaded the greater part of it without paying the plaintiff anything for the freight. Accordingly he prayed that £7 12s 6d arising from the sale of the salt might be arrested as a foreign attachment and delivered to him according to the custom of the city, and he produced the covenant between them dated 8 Oct.
The defendant having made four defaults, the plaintiff prayed that John Wykes, the serjeant of the Chamber, who had made and received the aforesaid sum out of the sale of part of the salt, should pay it to him. Thereupon, according to the custom, the plaintiff was put on oath as to how much was really owed to him. He said the amount was as abovesaid, but he had borrowed 40s from the defendant. Accordingly it was considered that this sum should be deducted and that the plaintiff receive £5 12s 6d. But as it was clear from the indenture that the defendant had agreed to pay the plaintiff for his freightage within seven days after he had tied up in London, and if he failed to do so or to land the salt he should after the seven days pay the plaintiff 3s 4d a day for his expenses, and since the plaintiff had tarried with his ship for ten further days, with his freight unpaid and with the salt still not discharged, owing to the defendant's default, as was testified by many witnesses, it was considered that he receive 33s 4d more. The serjeant of the Chamber then paid him the two amounts and he was mainprised by Edmund Bys and Nicholas Brandon to restore it, if the defendant within a year and a day submitted to justice and was able to prove reasonably that he was not liable for the debt and damages.
Nicholas Brembre, knight, came before the mayor and recorder and acknowledged the following writing to be his deed: Grant from Nicholas Brembre to William Venour, Henry Vanner, Edmund Halsted, Thomas Broun and John Soles, citizens and merchants of London, of all his goods and chattels, live and dead, of whatsoever kind and wherever they might be, as well within the city as elsewhere this side of or beyond the seas, to have and to hold to them, to do and dispose thereof as their own goods without any reclamation or condition whatsoever. Sealed with the donor's seal and given in London on 15 Oct. 1387 (fn. 26).
Adam Fraunceys, knight, appeared before the Mayor and Aldermen on 30th July 1386 and prayed that it might be recorded that on 17 June, at Barton-on-Humber co. Yorks, thieves broke into his room in John Davy's inn and stole two coffers belonging to him, in which were his seal, bearing his arms and the words "sigillum Ade Fraunceys," divers sums of money in gold and silver and certain jewels, and that he repudiated all bonds and other documents which might be sealed with his seal after that date.
Membr. 7 b
William, son of John Algate of St Albans, who had been apprenticed on 24 June 1380 for ten years to Roger Streyt, ironmonger, complained by bill that his master in Dec. 1386 went to Middelburgh in Zeeland and immediately afterwards his goods in England were arrested and sold for the benefit of his creditors, so that the complainant received no instruction, food or clothing and had become a vagabond, contrary to the good customs of the city, wherefore he prayed to be released from his apprenticeship.
The Mayor and Aldermen sent for Robert Parys and Robert Havelok, masters of the mistery of Ironmongers, who said on oath that the master had no shop in London after Dec. 1386 and did not provide for his apprentice. Afterwards the Mayor and Aldermen, hearing that John Grove, armourer, was attorney of the said master in England, sent for him in order to have fuller information. He admitted the truth of the complaint but opposed the exoneration on the ground that the apprentice had not rendered account. To this the apprentice replied that he had given security by a bond in £600 from himself, John Marchal and John Algate to render account, which bond John Grove had accepted. Evidence was given that he had gone to his master in Middelburgh to make the account, but his master refused to receive it. On the above facts, it was considered by the court that the complainant be exonerated from his apprenticeship and be allowed to serve whom he would.
Adam de St Ives reported to the mayor and recorder that he had put a seal engraved with his arms in a room of his house near the Stokkes (fn. 27) and about a fortnight before Christmas, when he went to get it, he found that it had been removed and he could not find it. He prayed that the matter be recorded so that he should not be responsible for any deeds sealed with the seal after that date.
Whereas a bill was brought before the Mayor and Aldermen by John Burwell, claiming from Nicholas Horne 86 tuns and one pipe of Rochelle wine, the mayor appointed Thomas Gurdeler, Thomas Newton, John Vatote and Richard Toky as arbitrators. They awarded that as regards 78 tuns of the wine, which Nicholas Home had sold at Middelburgh, he ought to pay John Burwell the sum of £42 12s 6d gros, which amounted in sterling, counting the noble at 7s 10d gros, to £36 5s 2d (fn. 28). As regards the remaining 8 tuns and one pipe, which were then in Middelburgh in the custody of John Laward and Thomas Dove, they ought to be sold and the proceeds divided, John Burwell receiving five-eighths and Nicholas Horne three-eighths. But as regards a further amount of £17 18s ¾d, which John Burwell claimed from Nicholas Horne as his contribution towards the expenses of takelyng, victuals and wages of the masters and mariners of a ship called "la Cristofre" of London, in which they were partners, the arbitrators would not make any award without the aid of merchants cognisant of the facts. [French]
Precept was issued to William Venour and Hugh Fastolf, sheriffs, to bring before the Mayor and Aldermen at the Guildhall on 31 Jan. 1388 the bodies of Roger Wygemor, John Donyngton, draper, Robert Lyndeseye, tailor, and William Sheryngham to answer concerning divers evildoings and misprisions whereof they were indicted, and also twelve good and lawful men of their bailiwick, not of the affinity of the said Roger etc., to make delivery of the same and further to fulfil those things which should be required of them by the court according to the law and custom of the city. On which day the said Roger came by William Sheryngham his attorney and the said John, Robert and William in their proper persons. And the said indictment was seen by the court, whereof the tenor follows in these words: Inquest taken at Guildhall on Monday (16 Sept. 1387) (fn. 29) after the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross Ao ii Ric. II before Nicholas Exton, mayor, William More and William Standon, sheriffs, and William Cheyne, recorder, to inquire who were maintainers, advisers or in any way guilty of the evil misprisions lately committed against the king and the condition and governance of the city by John Northampton, John More, Richard Norbury and William Essex and also to inquire concerning the goods and chattels of the same John, John, Richard and William and of Peter Mildenhale, which jurors said upon their oath that Roger Wygemor, John Maudeleyne, Robert Riseby, John Donyngton, draper, William Norton, Robert Lyndeseye, tailor, John Chedder, mercer, William Sheryngham and John Vyne, mercer, were maintainers, advisers and helpers, for the more part, in all the evils and misprisions done against Nicholas Brembre, knight, late mayor of London, the sheriffs, aldermen and governance of the city, and as regards any goods and chattels of John Norhampton etc. they say they know nothing thereof, nor do they make any presentment. In witness whereof the jurors to this inquest have set their seals.
And because the said indictment made no mention of a certain time or place and thus was of no force at law, the said John Donyngton etc. were told by the court that they were not bound to answer the indictment, and if it were of any force, they could exonerate themselves by the king's letters patent whereby he pardoned to his liege men of London and each of them and the whole commonalty of London—except those who were adjudged to be convicted of the discord and dissension in the city, and others who had withdrawn themselves outside the city for the said causes and hitherto had not returned to their obedience and to surrender to the peace, whose names were exhibited in the king's chancery to be entered of record—the suit of his peace which pertains to him for all treasons, felonies, insurrections, trespasses, conspiracies, confederacies, leagues and all other misprisions against his royal majesty within the city before the date of his letters patent, whereof any, being indicted or accused, had not been convicted or might in future be indicted or accused, and granted his sure peace to them in the premises, which letters patent were dated 22 June Ao 9 (1385).
The said John Donyngton etc. said they did not wish to seek any benefit from the above letters and craved leave to answer the indictment, whereupon they were severally charged and pleaded not guilty and put themselves for good or ill upon the country. A jury of John Colshull and his fellows, being sworn and charged, found them not guilty. Accordingly it was considered that they go quit thereof; and because it seemed to the court that the indictment was of no force nor was anyone bound to answer to it by law, it was considered that no process be made on it against John Maudeleyne, Robert Riseby, William Norton, John Chedder, mercer, and John Vyne, mercer, who were likewise named in it. And it was agreed that the indictment be so endorsed.
Membr. 8 b
Quitclaim from Peter Porter, goldsmith, of Malyns (fn. 30) in Brabant, to Sir John de Sproxston, parson of the church of Groundesburgh (fn. 31) co. Suffolk, of all actions, real and personal, suits, plaints and demands from the beginning of the world to the present day.
Alice, widow of John Coterell and executrix of his will, was summoned, on a bill of John Body and Joan his wife, to bring into court the sum of £100 and the third part of the residue of the goods of the said John Coterell. In the bill the plaintiffs alleged that the said John by his will of 23 July 1349 left £40 to his son Thomas, £20 to his son John and £40 to his daughter Joan, now plaintiff, with a proviso that if any died under age their share was to be divided among the others, and that he also left a third part of the residue of his goods to the said children and the wardship of the children to their stepmother Alice, the defendant. Afterwards Thomas died aged two years and John aged three years, and accordingly their shares fell in to Joan.
The defendant pleaded that Geoffrey Colewelle and others were also appointed executors, that the goods came into the hands of the said Geoffrey, and that she herself neither received nor administered them.
On this issue a jury of the venue, which was summoned for 2 May 1388, brought in a verdict that the defendant, as executrix, administered the goods. Therefore it was considered that she be committed to prison because she had not the money at hand to pay, there to remain until she brought in the sum of £100 and found security to answer for the third part of the residue. No damages were given as the plaintiffs demanded none in their bill.
Membr. 9 b
Protection and safe conduct for a year under letters patent, dated at Westminster 2 June 1388 and addressed to all and singular admirals, captains, castellans and their lieutenants, wardens of the ports and other maritime places, sheriffs, mayors, constables, bailiffs, ministers and all other faithful lieges and subjects constituted as well by land as by sea, in favour of Matthew Cenyng (fn. 32) of Florence, merchant, giving him permission to enter, travel in and leave the country, together with his merchandise, and exempting him from all prosecutions for any past offences.
Thomas Haukere, ironmonger, brought a bill of complaint before the Mayor and Aldermen against Edmund Olyver, stockfishmonger, reciting that John Northampton, son of John Northampton of Lincoln, became his apprentice for a term of 12 years at midsummer 1382, and that the said Edmund as surety undertook to make good any damage done by him, and that on 20 Oct. 1386 he sent the apprentice to Middelburgh in Zeeland to receive from Thomas atte Hoke, the plaintiff's attorney, the sum of £90 and to bring the money or its value in merchandise to London by a ship sailing from the town of Ver, called Caunfer (fn. 33), but the apprentice, having received the money on 9 Dec. 1386, left his service the next day and departed to some place unknown, though he might have had passage in many ships sailing from Caunfer to London; and accordingly the plaintiff claimed damages of £200 from the said Edmund in accordance with the law merchant. [French]
The defendant appeared on 13 Feb. and a day was given him on 30 July, that he might in the meantime make inquiries among merchants trading at Middelburgh. On that day the parties chose arbitrators, John Walcote and Richard Wyllesdon, on behalf of the plaintiff, and Thomas Girdlere and Richard Toky, on behalf of the defendant, to give an award on 19 Dec.
Before that date, however, a certain William Brampton came into court with a bill, in which he stated that he had been chosen umpire, because the arbitrators could not agree, and that he had come into the Chamber of the Guildhall on 17 Dec. to give an award as regards one part of the dispute, his award being that a certain letter under the great seal of the Staple of Middelburgh, which had been delivered to Thomas Hoke, the plaintiff's attorney, by William Brampton, governor of the Staple, should be annulled and cancelled, because it had been issued only to establish a right over the apprentice and not to prejudice any proceedings in England, and thereupon the letter had been handed over to Henry Perot, clerk of the Guildhall (fn. 34), to be destroyed, and that further he had adjudged that no plea should be begun till Easter, the matter remaining in his hands meanwhile, since he intended either to appear personally then or to send a final award under his seal. [French]
Membr. 10 b
As the said William Brampton did not send his award at Easter, the plaintiff craved leave to proceed to a plea. But the court, wishing to know whether he had made a definite award or not, and considering that a letter from Middelburgh might easily have been delayed by contrary winds or other causes, wrote to him a letter under the mayoralty seal [French] on 11 April 1388, urging him to send the award. To this he replied by a letter dated at Middelburgh on 20 May, excusing himself for not attending in London, because he was unable to come, and stating that the apprentice, John Northampton, had arrived in Middelburgh without any merchandise, gold or silver, except his bare expenses, and while there he had neither bought nor sold anything nor made any exchanges, as was clear from the evidence of merchants and from a search which he had made in the books where such exchanges were registered, but that all such exchanges had been made by the plaintiff's attorney, Thomas Hoke—the days, months, years and terms of payment all being duly entered in the registers. Accordingly he found the boy not guilty of what was surmised against him by his master, namely, that he had received so great a sum of money, for it was well known that Thpmas Haukere had no merchandise on that voyage to Middelburgh except a fardel of cloth which was not worth £20, and Thomas Hoke told the writer that he could not sell it for any sum of money so large as was alleged. Further, as to whether the boy made his journey by command of his master or of the attorney, or whether he was dead or alive or what had become of him, the writer could not gain any certainty or information from the inquiries he had made, but he knew that many English merchants, whom God assoil, had within the last two years been drowned and had lost their lives on the journey between England and Zeeland and in the straits of Holland. Accordingly, taking all these matters into consideration, he gave as his final award that the defendant, Edmund Olyver, be quit of all claims from the plaintiff, saving to the latter the right of proceeding against the boy, if, which God grant, he were still alive. The writer begged the Mayor and Aldermen not to be displeased by his delay in answering, which had been caused by a long wait at Orewell on his passage out and much business on his arrival at Middelburgh. [French]
Simon Broun, son of the late Robert Broun of London, was attached to answer John Bishop, mercer, and Katerine his wife, in a plea of contempt and trespass, in that he took service with the said Katerine, when she was sole, on 29 Dec. 1374 for seven years, receiving food and clothing as his wages, and left on 18 April 1375 without permission or reasonable cause, contrary to the ordinance (fn. 35) of the king and his council that any servant so leaving his service before the end of the contract should incur the penalty of imprisonment, whereby the plaintiff had damage £10.
The defendant pleaded that long before 29 Dec. 1374 he became apprentice of a certain John Aunger, bottlemaker, for eight years, and that on that date his master sold the unexpired portion of his apprenticeship to the said Katerine without his consent (fn. 36) and gave her the counterpart of his indentures, which was against the custom of the city, since the plaintiff was not a freewoman either then or at any time during his apprenticeship and had no trade in the city, whereby he might be made a freeman, and the plaintiff, thus being seised of him as an apprentice by colour of the said sale, set him to minding horses outside the liberty of the city and gave him no instruction in his trade; and it was for this reason that he left her service, as he was entitled to do, for at no time did he make any covenant to serve her. He offered to verify his pleading and demanded judgment.
The plaintiffs answered that the defendant of his own free will agreed to serve the said Katerine, which the defendant again denied, whereupon both parties put themselves on the country. On 26 June a jury of the venue of the parish of St Bride said on oath that the defendant made no agreement with the plaintiff Katerine and entered her service in no other way than by colour of the sale of the apprenticeship. Therefore it was considered that the plaintiffs take nothing by their bill, but be in mercy and that the defendant go quit thereof.
Membr. 11 b
Writ, dated at Westminster 14 July 1388. Whereas the merchants of the cities of London and Norwich and the boroughs of Lenne, Great Yernemuth, St Botolph (fn. 37) and Kyngeston-on-Hull had complained that the men of Lubik, Rustok, Wissemere, Sounde (fn. 38) and Hamburgh in Almaine had arrested their servants and goods in the town of La Sounde, threatening to keep them in prison and their goods under arrest until they received redress for certain alleged wrongs done to them on the sea and elsewhere by Englishmen, whereof the said merchants were innocent, the king commands the mayor and sheriffs of London to arrest all the men, goods and merchandise of the towns of Lubik, Rustok, Wissemere, Sounde and Hamburgh and other parts of Almaine, being in the port of London or elsewhere within their bailiwick or district, and to detain them until they find sufficient security not to depart from the country without leave and to answer such charges as may be made against them on behalf of the king or the said merchants.
By virtue of this writ the following merchants of Almaine (fn. 39), Hermann Vynthorp, Frawyn Stupyn, Conerad de Ulpey, Bernard van Lune, Henry Smytman, Andrew Kilmere, Broun Dycof, William van Borne, Herri Meyresbek, John Knyghtkyn, Hilbrond Isplyngrote, Nicholas Lure, Frawyn Balke, Albert Clippyng, John Wystrete, John Espenkethe, Bernard Mekelynghous and Nicholas Paternostermaker, appeared in Guildhall and were mainprised by John Shadeworth and other citizens to appear before the chancellor on his next arrival in London or before others of the king's council, and further to save the mayor and sheriffs harmless by reason of their delivery.
Writ, dated at Cantebrigg (fn. 40) 20 Sept. 1388. Whereas it had been granted by the king's predecessors to the merchants of the Hanse of Almaine that they should not be arrested for debts in which they were not sureties or principals or for trespasses committed by others, and recently the king had ordered that the merchants and goods of Lubik etc. in London should be arrested, nevertheless the king, in consideration of the above liberties and because Hermann Vynthorpe, John Pape, William de Borne, Hermann Husman and Mathias Walkemole had entered into a pledge before the king and his council that English merchants at Lubik, Rustok, Wissemere and Hamburgh should come and go freely without molestation, commands that the Hanse merchants be allowed to go at large with their goods. By the council.
And because this writ did not seem sufficient to the Mayor and Aldermen, the merchants were told to obtain another writ. Afterwards in the mayoralty of Nicholas Twyford, knight, they brought another writ (fn. 41), and they and their mainpernors were then exonerated.
Membr. 12,13 and cedula
A list of 490 aldermen and citizens under their respective wards, and 93 rectors, vicars and curates, who took the oath before Nicholas Exton, mayor, and the sheriffs, according to a writ and cedula entered in Letter Book H, fo. 228. A note that the names of lay citizens followed one after another, with no mention of their wards, in the return which accompanied the writ and cedula to Chancery.
[The oath, given in Letter Book H, had been taken by those attending parliament on 3 June 1388 and pledged them not to suffer the acts recently passed to be repealed. The writ requiring the aldermen and chief men of the city to take the oath was issued next day, 4 June.]
Henry Derby, ironmonger, was summoned to answer William Avenell, son of Giles Avenell of London, in a plea of covenant, wherein the latter complained that he became apprentice in Feb. 1382 to the defendant, who turned him away last Christmas, saying he wanted no more of his service, and this was without reasonable cause and not owing to any demerit of the plaintiff, in consequence of which he received no food, clothing or teaching and had heavy charges in keeping himself, since he could not take service with any one else, wherefore he prayed to be exonerated from his apprenticeship and to be reimbursed for his expenses, according to the custom of the city.
On the master's denying these allegations, a jury of the parish of St Botolph by Billingsgate found for the plaintiff and assessed damages at 6s 8d. Therefore it was considered that the said William be exonerated from his apprenticeship and recover the damages taxed by the jury.
Letters patent of Sir Guy de Bryene, knight, testifying that; whereas a certain John Grede sued a writ of scire facias against him returnable on the octave of St John the Baptist concerning his manor of Haselbere (fn. 42) co. Dorset, in order to defend his estate he had searched in his treasury in his manor of Rammesham (fn. 43) and in several other places for the muniments relating to the said manor and could not find them, and that, having a great suspicion that they had been taken away in a box by his son William to his (Guy's) house in London, he had, on his coming to London, of his own accord and without any suggestion from others, broken into the box on 30 June 1388 and there found fines, charters and other documents relating to the manor aforesaid and several others of his manors, which muniments he took away with him, leaving in the box such muniments as concerned his son's own lands and tenements. He issues these letters patent to explain his action, for which no one was responsible but himself. Sealed with his seal on 6 July 1388. [French]
Membr. 14 b
Bargain, and sale by Roger Brymmor, grocer, to John Weneton, fishmonger, and William Romesseie, tailor, of three quarters of a craier called "le Andrew" of Dertemouth with the proportion of rigging belonging thereto. Dated at London 23 June 1388. [French]
Letter of attorney from John Cook, chaplain, to Richard Odyham, chamberlain of the Guildhall, and Sir John Leicestre, chaplain, to demand moneys due on letters of exchange from Angel Cristopher and Peter Mark and their partners, Lombards.
In a dispute between Ralph Node, spurrier, and his late apprentice, Simon Hobbe, who complained that his master had not instructed him sufficiently in his trade, the arbitrators, Simon Winter, goldsmith, Simon Abraham, girdler, John Stafford, pinner, and Edward Law, junior, glover, awarded that the apprentice remain with his master for a further period and receive pay at the rate of 60s the year and his food and drink, and that the master make him free of the city as soon as he had learnt his trade and had paid 20s. [French]
Memorandum that on 6 May 1387 John Banham, late apprentice and servant of Thomas Austyn, mercer, came before the Mayor and Aldermen and complained that his master had sued him in the Sheriffs' Court for £500, and though he did not owe that sum he agreed to judgment on the promise of his master that all previous accounts between them should be satisfactorily settled, but when he was committed to prison for the debt his master allowed him to remain there, wherefore he prayed that the Mayor and Aldermen would appoint auditors and permit him to render account.
The Mayor and Aldermen, wishing to do justice between the parties, summoned the master before them. He said that he had made no such promise, but for his good name he would agree to the appointment of certain mercers as auditors to hear an account out of court, so long as the sheriffs' judgment was allowed to stand, and he promised to recover from the complainant only what the auditors should award. Afterwards by consent of the parties William Sheryngham, John Loveye, John Ottele and Robert Guphay, mercers, were elected and having heard the complainant's account produced their award in court on 8 Oct. 1387 as follows:
The said Thomas Austyn having discharged John Banham of rendering account for the period between Christmas 1382 and Christmas 1384 and having agreed to accept the oath and hand of John Hore, another of his servants, for the ensuing year, and the latter having given evidence, the auditors awarded that John Banham be quit for all receipts from his master during these three years, but that he ought to remain liable for any debts arising out of loans made by him. [French]
The parties again appeared on 29 Nov. 1387, Thomas Austyn, who had been committed to prison on divers accusations of the complainant and John Hore, having been liberated and being now on mainprise. All papers and memoranda were read relating to the three years for which the account had been taken and for the half year during which the complainant had served Thomas Austyn in his shop. It was found that £110 was owed to the latter by divers persons for goods sold to them by John Banham. Thereupon Thomas Austyn said he would give the said John a sufficient warrant to recover these debts, but he would not himself assume any responsibility. If, however, any acquittances were given or moneys received by him or his agents, he would make allowance for them. He was also willing, if the said John would find security for paying the sum of £110 by instalments, that the sheriffs should discharge him from prison, and he would give him an acquittance for all debts except the sum of £110.