The corporation of Rye: 1611-20

Pages 146-158

The Manuscripts of Rye and Hereford Corporations, Etc. Thirteenth Report, Appendix: Part IV. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1892.

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1610[11], January 2.—Depositions concerning William Wale of Plymouth "sworne to the othe of Alleageance."

Thomas Pretty of Rye deposes that he heard Wale say that "an Ireishe man was all ways as good as a Scotishman." Pretty replied "that may not be, for wee have one Scotisheman [that] is better than any Irisheman," to which Wale answered "You make so much of your King." Pretty said again "Our King is supreame head [the words "of the church" are struck through] what say you to that?" Wale said "there was never an Irishe man but was as goode as the Kinge.' Pretty said "there may be Kinges in Irelande" to which Wale did not answer. Other depositions to a similar effect. Wale replies that if he used such speeches "he was in drink" when he did so. Memorandum.—The Mayor and his bretheren ordered Wale to be whipped for his "bad and lewde speeches."

1611, April 18. Dover Castle.—Letters of Henry, Lord Howard of Marnhull, Earl of Northampton, K.G., Keeper of the Privy Seal, Constable of Dover Castle, Keeper of the Chancery and Admiralty of Cinque Ports and their members, addressed to the Mayor, Jurats, and others of the toun of Rye; reciting the Kings Letters Patent of the previous 6th of March appointing Thomas Milward Esqre. of Lincoln's Inn and John Huggefford Esq. of Henwood, Warwickshire, to execute, for term of their lives, the office of Bailiff of the town of Rye. Copy On the back, is a copy of the King's Letters Patent.

1611, April—.—Sir Thomas Waller to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye.

Informing them that he had received directions from the Lord Warden for the mustering of the Cinque Ports, and that on account of the infection at Sandwich he could not perform the same. Commanding the Mayor of Rye to give notice that the captains of the trained bands and their companies, and also the captains of the general and untrained bands are to appear before him (Waller) on the 7th day of May next to be mustered and their armour viewed. Signed.

1611, May 18.—A Proclamation against melting down of gold and silver coins. Printed by Robert Barker.

1611, June 4.—A Proclamation for the apprehension of the Lady Arabella [Stuart] and William Seymour, second son of Lord Beauchamp.

1611, June 23.—The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to the Lord Warden.

About seven years before they obtained, through his instrumentality and for the preservation of their harbour, and for "subpressing" or sundry parcels of salt marsh, "intended by diverse gentlemen to be inned," a Commission of Sewers which extended "from the enteringe of the sea to the Camber, and from thence to all manner of creekes, streames, channels, and sewers that then did resort to the said Camber or in tymes past have resorted or come to the same, and also from the entering of the sea aforesaid unto the Pudle of Rye, and so forthe to the towne of Rye" and the streams, &c., leading up to the country on both sides of the town, viz. :—that to Appledore, and so to Newenden and Robertsbridge, and that, on the other side of the town, to Udimer and Peasmarsh. A new Commission of Sewers has lately been granted, at the suit of certain noblemen and gentlemen of the county of Sussex, which extends to the whole county and is a supersedeas to the former Commission which has still three years to run, and, under it, much work upon the harbour is in contemplation. In the new Commission, the names of many, who, under the former Commission have done useful work, are omitted; amongst the persons omitted are the Mayors of Rye and Winchelsea. All this, the Mayor and Jurats consider may be very hurtful to them unless the Lord Warden looks after their interests, which they beg him to do. Draft.

1611, July 8. Northampton House.—The Earl of Northampton to—.

Out of the regard I have for the poor estate of the town of Rye I have made stay of a late grant unto Sir John Tufton, of the Hospital of St. Bartholomew of Playdon, in the Parish of Rye, and send you copy of the docquet of the said grant. I pray you to send me particulars of the estate of the Hospital so that I may know whether to give way to Sir John Tufton's contract. Signed. Seal of Arms.

1611, December 30.—Depositions taken at Rye concerning John Allen of Rye, goldsmith. Henry Damir deposes that he heard Allen say "there was a lible cast abrode which concerned the makinge of the harbor of Rye, and that the water should be cutt throughe St. Mary's marshe and the water should come out of Bridge well, and [that] the harbor makers were brewers, and bakers, shepherds, and silver-candlestick makers, carters, and hogschops (sic) and divers other had speaches." Other depositions follow.

[1611.] Copy of a presentment by the Jury at the King's Court held at Rye that Susan, the wife of Roger Swapper, late of Rye, sawyer, on the 21 July, 1607, and on other days before and after, not having God before her eyes and led by diabolical instigation, at Rye aforesaid, wickedly, diabolically, and feloniously "did councell" with certain wicked and impious spirits, and the same wicked and impious spirits "did enterteyne and feed" in order to gain wealth, against the King's peace and the form of the Statute &c. Further presentment that Anne wife of George Taylor of Rye, gentleman, received abetted aided and comforted the aforesaid Susan knowing her to have committed the felony abovesaid. Written beneath, are the opinions of Counsel as follows:—"I thinke it is pardoned by the generall pardon—John Shurley. I am of Mr. Sergeant Shurley's opinion—Ja. Thurbarne."

1612, May 13. Whitehall.—Proclamation by the King offering a reward of 500l. for the apprehension of Lord Sanquair and 100l. for apprehension of Robert Carlisle, if alive, and 300l. for the body of the the former, or 50l. for that of the latter, if dead. Lord Sanquair is described as of "tall stature, pale faced, of a sallowe colour, a small yellowishe beard, one glasse or false eye, attended commonly with a Frenche boy"; and Robert Carlisle is described as of "an ordinarie stature, a handsome fellowe, his hayre of his heade of a flaxen redd, his beard something redde with a hayre scarre, or cutt on his lip up to his nose which maketh him snuffle in his speeche." The Proclamation recites that "one Turner" had been murdered on the previous Monday, by Robert Carlisle, a Scottish borderer a servant of Lord Sanquair, and Erwin, an English borderer, and that Lord Sanquair was a party to the murder. Copy.

1612, July 11. Northampton House.—The Lord Warden to "the Commissioners of Sewers and the Baylife of the surrounded levells upon the River Rother."

A decree had lately been made for stopping the "auncient and navigable river of Rother" near Thorney Wall; this the inhabitants of Rye and Tenderden consider will "utterly decaye" the haven of Rye and impoverish the ports of Rye and Tenderden. The Commissioners are, therefore, to forbear the execution of that decree till further enquiry has been made.

1612, August 20.—Licence granted by Henry, Earl of Northampton, Lord Warden, to Charles de la Mare, fisherman, of Dieppe to fish "at a place called the Sowe upon the English coast, and elsewhere upon that coast" for all sorts of fish, without restraint of season. The licence recites that the King had, at the suit of Monsieur de la Bodery, "late resident Ambassador in England for the French Kinge Henry the fowerth," consented to licences being granted to six French "barques," in addition to the number allowed in Queen Elizabeth's time, to fish on the eastern coast of England, "besides one other boate which his Majestie is pleased out of speciall favour to graunt personallie to Monsieur de la Bodery, in respect of his owne good carriage during his abode in these partes." King James stipulating that neither his Majesty of Fraunce nor any other his ministers that shall serve hereafter in this place will ever after this grant published, excuse or seek by their treaty to exempt from the punishment accustomed, any other fishermen of Fraunce whatsoever that shall presume to fish in these parts above this number. Copy.

1612[–13], February 13. Dover Castle.—John Packenham to the Mayors, Bailiffs, and Jurats of Rye, Winchelsea, and Lydd.

Ordering that the certificates of taking the oath of allegiance be sent in at once and complaining that they had not been sent in earlier. Copy.

1612[–13], February 16. The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to the Earl of Northampton.

We took the oath of allegiance of most of the inhabitants on 3 December and on the 14th instant we took the oath of the remainder, who were before at sea.

1612[–13], March 9. The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to Mr. John Harmon at Maidstone.

We are advertised by Mr. John Bracegirdle, our vicar, of the great love and favour towards our poor town of Rye in furthering the pretended works for the amendment of our decayed harbour, that you will vouchsafe to take such course with the Commissioners upon good consideration to give security for the affecting of the said work. Therefore these are to desire you to send us your answer by the bearer, Mr. Bracegirdle, whether it will please you to take upon you the charge of these weighty affairs or not, or what course you think is best to be done. Draft.

1613, May 15.—Verdict at a coroners inquest.

"Wee do find that on Thursday the thirtenth day of May and in the yeare of the raigne of our Soveraigne Lord King James of England &c., the eleventh, about fower or five of the clocke in the afternoone of the same day. Robert Mullenex of Farleighe in the County of Sussex, yeomann, and one William Lamperd of Farleighe aforesaid, gentleman, being in the house of Richard Barker of Rie in the County afforesaid, inholder, and playing at cardes at a game called newe cutt, and Edward Skynner of Rie standing by them and looking uppon them, the said William Lamperd dealing the cardes did turne up seaven and twenty for the said Mullenex and for himself eight and twenty, whereuppon the said Mullenex said the game is myne, and the said Skynner standing by and looking on them at play, said it was not his and thereuppon the said Mullenex said unto the said Skynner that hee did lie, whereupon the said Skynner suddainly tooke up a stone pott standing before him at the table with beere and did fling it at the head of the said Mullenex and strooke him on the lefte side of his head in such sorte as the said Mullenex did presently sincke downe and so with the said stroke did breake and perishe the scull of the head of the said Mullenex, by meanes whereof the said Robert Mullenex did laye and languish in the howse of the said Barker untill the next day being Friday, the fowerteenth day of the same moneth of May, untill three or fower of the clocke in the afternoone, and so died by meanes of the said flinging of the pott."

1615, August 31.—Certificate of the Mayor and Jurats of Rye to Lord Zouch that they have appointed Marke Thomas, Mayor, Richard Fowtrell, Thomas Ensinge, Mathewe Younge, John Galmer, and Richard Gibbridge, Jurats of Rye, to go to Shipway to do such service as to them pertains by the ancient usages and customs of the Cinque Ports at the solemnizing of the "Cerement or Promise" of the Lord Warden at his first entry into the said office.

1615, September 2. Dover Castle.—Lord Zouch to the Mayors and Bailiffs of the Cinque Ports.

"The Kinges most excellent Majestie hath bene graciouslie pleased to signifie unto me that the Kinge of Spaine, havinge a purpose to send men for supplies into Flaunders, hath by his Embassador resident here made request unto his Majestie that if any of the King of Spaines shippes appointed for conveance thether shoulde perhaps, ether by ill weather or by any other casualtie, be driven into any of his Majesty's portes of his kingdome, they shoulde be fairely used and with such good respecte as the subjectes of a kinge that nowe is tied in a league of amitie with his Majestie is deserved and suffer them to furnish themselves with such thinges as they want, paying for the same, which his Highnes is well pleased to graunte and hath commanded me to geve directions accordinglie throughe all the Cinque Portes and landinge places within my government. These are therefore in his Majesty's name and in accomplishement of his directions therein to will and require you and every of you that if any Spanishe shippes or other vessels bound with men for Flaunders shall occasionally arrive into any of the portes, creekes or havons within the Cinque Portes or the members thereof and within your severall precincts you doe suffer them quietlie to land without gevinge any occasion of offence and permitt them for their monyes to supplie themselves of such thinges as they shall stande in neede of." Copy.

1615[–16], January 15, Phillip Lane.—Lord Zouch to the Mayors, Bailiffs, and Jurats of Hythe, New Romney, Rye, and Lydd.

"His Majestie hath beene of late pleased by his Letters Patents under the Great Seale of England to geve power and licence unto Sir Edward Howard, Knighte, to erect and sett up a light upon the Nesse near adjoyning unto you, intending it will be for the generall good of all marchants and others which passe that waye by sea, and I understandinge thereof and desirous to performe all worthy office of a carefull governor towards all his Majesty's subjects inhabitinge within the Cinque Portes, and not knowinge how prejudiciall or disadvantage the building of such lanthorne might be to you which dwell thereaboutes, have by my place interpassed and as yet stayed all further proceedings therein till I had geven my advertisement thereof, wherefore I praye you to enter into a serious consideration of the busynes and after mature deliberation and a necessarie consultation taken therein, to certefie me how you approve the course intended herein." Copy.

1616, May 1.—The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to Lord Zouch, the Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports.

"This day our Mayor, Mr. Marke Thomas, made known to us of your most honourable love to us towards the amendment of our poor decayed haven and withall advertised us of your great care therein in addressing your letters unto the Low Countries to very substantial and expert workmen well able to judge of such waterworks, as is to be done about these affairs. We pray you again to send over your letters unto those workmen that both or one of them may come over and view our decayed harbour." Draft.

1616, September 10.—The Mayor and Jurats of Hastings to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye.

We send you the Commission to the bailiff of Yarmouth to be sealed desiring you to send him such money as from either of your towns is due having respect therein to the last decree for increase of their fee. We pray you likewise to send unto him the names of your questmen, the names of your masters and barques which are gone to Yarmouth to fish, with the number of men in every of them.

1616, September 30.—A list of the Jurats and commons of Rye with facetious notes against each name. "Mr. Convars the ancientest townclarke in the Portes, John Walker the wisdome of Rye" etc.

1617, May 19.—The Bailiff and Jurats of Lydd to Marke Thomas, Mayor of Rye.

Whereas one John Skiptone, an inhabitant of Rye, about a year since took unto his service Joane Skiptone, his sister, and hath received three pounds of our overseers for keeping her during her life, hath forced her from his service and denieth her any maintenance, whereby she is likely to become vagrant, and then we shall be forced to send her unto you to be kept and provided for. Seal.

1617, July 12.—Certificate by the Mayor and Jurats of Rye, of the good behaviour of Thomas Maxwell, a musician, an inhabitant of Rye, formerly an inhabitant of Battle, who desires to go to Middleborough in the Low Countries to visit his brother, John Maxwell, a merchant there, and to take with him John, son of the said John Maxwell, Oliver Sanders, his servant, Michael Borne, an apprentice, and Ambrose Drury, one of his company, with their musical instruments and to return again to Rye.

1618, August 31.—Bond, signed with the marks of several persons who "goe to Yermouth for the fishinge this present yere" promising to pay to the Corporation of Rye, "out of every boate" half a share towards the repair of the "owter jettye at Stronde which otherwise will shortly by the violence of the sea be utterly overthroune and cast awaye."

1618, October 31.—The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to the Lord Warden.

The aid given by him in times past towards the amendment of the decayed harbour of Rye, emboldens them to entreat his further help towards effecting such works for their harbour as are needful for the support of the town and so for "his Majesties service of sea fisshe," and for "the bringinge upp of many navigators and saylers, fitt for the common weale of the land. They have appointed "______ Bacon Esquire," Captain of Camber Castle, to solicit their cause with the Privy Council to prefer to the King a petition for the amendment of the harbour. Copy.

1618[–19], January 29.—The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to "Mr. John Frewen (Minister of the Word of God at Noritham) in London."

An assembly of the Mayor, Jurats and commonalty of Rye have approved of the petition which he proposes to address to the Lord Chancellor "for the makeinge of the way or causy at Newenden." Copy.

1618[–19], February 4. Gray's Inn.—James Thurbarne to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye.

"For my own part I know not how I have deserved any ill opinion amongst you except I may be blamed for being faithful and over careful of you and yours." Advises them as to the Quo warranto issued against them by the Attorney General. Signed.

1618[–19], February 11.—The Lords of the Council to the Lord Warden.

"The leavinge [levying] of forces and the preparations made at this tyme almoste throughout all the partes of E[urope is] a sufficient motive in reason of state to induce his Majestie to carrie the like vigilent and carefull eye to the saftie of his oune domynions and people upon . . . . . and events, by requiring a more effectuall and speedie supplie of such defectes as are found in the armed forces of this realme, then yett hath been performed in the tyme of peace, notwithstanding the many and often addresses from this Boarde in that behalfe." The Council therefore, by the King's special command, desire the Lord Warden to cause a general view and muster to be had, within his jurisdiction, both of horse and foot and a perfect enrolment to be made of all the numbers both trained and untrained. The trained bands are to be made perfect and complete "by supplyinge the roomes of such officers and other persons as are either deade, insufficient or otherwise wantinge, as well with those of the better qualitie as with such other freeholders, farmers, owners of land or househoulders as shalbe fitt for the same." In the second place, the Lord Warden is to give special order "that the armes of those forces be good and servisable, videlicet: for the foot, muskets and pickes, compleate and fullie furnished, without admittance of anie other unservisable armes which heretofore have been too frequentlye shewed and tollerated uppon the musters there." As the horse men "through conivancye and neglecte," are, for the most part, defective in arms and horses, it is, the Council consider, high time at length, after so many admonitions, that the troops of horse be filled up and made complete with all provisions and furniture. From this service no person is to excuse himself, but such as are known to be His Majestie's ordinary servants in Court, such of the clergy "as are appointed to finde Armes," the Lord Warden shall—according to lists received by him from the Bishop—cause it to be "shewed and disposed amongest the trayned bandes and troupes of horse as shalbe meete." Above all the Lord Warden is to require all persons, belonging either to the trained bands or troops of horse, to be ready at ten days warning. The Council has often reminded him that provision of powder, match, bullets, and carriages is needful for the safety of the Ports, yet so little care hath been taken thereof, as there is scarce any at all to be found. For redress of this deficiency, it is the King's commandment, that, according to the proportion formerly allotted in the late Queen's time, the Lord Warden shall cause provision to be made and kept in the accustomed places in the Ports, of such quantities of match and powder as are expressed at the foot of this letter [viz.: "At Sandwich; powder, one laste: match, 500 lbs. weighte. At Dover . . . . powder, demye laste: match, 250 lb. weighte"]. Lastly, the Council call the Lord Warden's attention to the repair of the beacons "which are altogether neglected and decayed"; these are to be amended, furnished with material for firing, and duly watched. Copy.

1618[–19], February 11. Dover.—William Ward, Mayor of Dover, to the Mayors, Bailiffs, and Jurats of the ports and towns of Folkeston, Hythe, Romney, Lydd, Rye, Winchelsea, Hastings, Pevensey, Seaford, and Tenterden.

The Lord Warden desires that "a speciall Guestling or meeting of the Cinque Portes and two ancient townes" should be held at New Romney on the 23rd of February "by eight of the clocke in the forenoon" to consider a letter from the Lords of the Council as to a petition which had been received by the king from "the marchaunts and owners of shippes trading the Straits and other places" complaining of the spoils committed by pirates, "especially those of Argier and Tunio [Tunis?] who have grown to an extraordinarie height and strength of robberie and have taken from the said petitioners in a few years past above 300 sayle of shipps with their lading and merchandize, besides the captivating of many hundred of his Majestie's subjectes." Towards the suppressing of those pirates, the merchants and ship-owners of London "have freely and with all allacritie" offered to raise 40,0001. The merchants of the Cinque Ports are required by the King to state what they will contribute towards this service which it is expected will not be less than 200li. in money for the two years next to come, one half of this sum is to be in readiness by the 18th of April next "at the farthest," because the King is resolved that this service shall be undertaken this summer. It is hoped that all [i.e. all the inhabitants] of the Ports will contribute something, "other wyse it will be a verie small summe that can be rared (sic) from the marchantes and owners of shippes of the Ports, which are now growen to be very few in number in respecte of the little trade there—the citizens and marchantes of London ingrossing all." Concludes "You see what [it] is his Lordshippe requireth by his said lettres, and therefore I pray you lett those that shall comme from you be prepared accordingly." Copy.

1618[–19], February 23.—Minute of the proceedings at a Guestling held at Romney.

On consideration of the letter addressed by the Lord Warden's direction to the officers of the Ports, concerning pirates, the assembly grants the sum of 200 marks towards the service in question, the first 100 marks to be ready by the following 1st of April and the other during the next year. The said sum is "to be levied by way of shipping, viz :—22s. a shipp"; any town failing to send its portion is to forfeit double, to the use of the Ports and their members. It is also agreed that "a lettre be directed from this house to our Lord Warden in excuse of this small contribution, which falleth out by reason of the small number of owners and merchauntes in the Ports by meanes of their restraint of trading by divers companies of merchauntes incorporated, and likewise by want of harbours and havens." The letter is to be delivered by the Mayors of Dover and Romney and Mr. Ruck of Sandwich "who are desired to second the cause in their discretion"; 6s. a day each is to be allowed them, with 20s. additional to the Mayor of Dover for his horse hire, afterwards "in his chamber, because of his unwillingness to goe to London for so small allowance, by certain of the Mayors and others, it was made up the full of fortie shillinges, over and above 6s. a day". A statement showing the sum to be contributed by each town follows. Copy.

1618[–19], February 23, Romney.—The Mayors, Bailiffs, Jurats, and Commons of the Cinque Ports, two ancient towns, and their members to the Lord Warden.

In accordance with his request, relative to the extermination of piracy, they have enquired "what number of inhabitants and owners of shipps trading to or neere the Straytes are resident within the Cinque Portes." They find only one ship. She belongs to Dover, and is not above 50 (?) tons burthen, and is only freighted by two or three merchants of that town. All the residue of the ships of the Ports are of small burthen and only trade to Newcastle and the west of England with malt; some few are "passage boates," and employed for France, Holland, and Flanders. The writers, however, confess that of late "the masters and owners of diverse shippes of good burthen did inhabite within the said Portes, but for wante of trade and imployment there, were constrayned to settle themselves at London" where they have continual employment owing to the merchants of that city having of late been incorporated intoseveral companies, thereby the merchants and other inhabitants of the Ports are "altogeather barred from that ordinary trade" formerly used. They continue :—"Yet not withstanding, out of the zeale and desyre we have to be helping unto soe worthy worke, we have agreed and most willinglye assent to contribute" to the charge mentioned in the Council's letter the sum of 200 marks "hoping that the merchants and owners of shipps of the said cittye of London wilbe as willinge and readye, upon occasion, to be helping unto us, if cause shall require." They ask the Lord Warden to urge their suit with the Council that they may as freely use "that trading within the Cinque Ports as auncientlye hath been accustomed, whereby the same Ports may be the better peopled" and the ancient number of ships for the King's service maintained. To obtain the Lord Warden's favour they have sent, as bearers of this letter Mr. William Ward, Mayor of Dover, Mr. Robert Wilcocke, Mayor of Romney, and Mr. Arthur Rucke, Jurat of Sandwich. Copy.

1618[–19], March 3. The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to the Lord Warden.

Once again they make known to him their "miserable poor estate" as "unto our only stay and refuge next under God and his Majestie." Owing to the decay of their harbour, and consequently of the fishing industry, a hundred of their fishermen are "ready to begg and starve;" many of them have forsaken the town, and "left their wives and children to a parish charge." The very few persons in trade, "of any abilitye to live," are so burdened by continual cesses and taxes that they are determined to leave the town. Thus the town, not long since of "good respect and importance" is likely soon—" if som gracious aspect shine not uppon it"—to be quite depopulated and abandoned. Of late by order of Council they have been "appointed unto that proportion of powder, lead [and] match, with carriages and mounting of ordinaunce," that in the late Queen's time "this toun was enjoyned unto," when "her Majestie's Ordinance was heere, which now is taken hence long since by commission." Their town was then in prosperity; but now their poverty is such that "though it be for that end and purpose wherein with willing harts, under his Majesty's and your honourable commaundment, wee are redy to spend our lives"—they pray that consideration may be had of their present state which they beg may be shown forth to this Council in order to obtain relief in respect of the proportion in question.Copy.

1618[–19], March 20. The Lord Warden to Mr. William Ward Mayor of Dover.

He has acquainted the Council with the Mayor's answer touching the contribution demanded towards the suppression of pirates, and has endeavoured to obtain the acceptance of his offer, but the Council will not abate their first demand. Encloses a letter he has received that evening from the Council, and hopes the Mayor will "not distast them in so small a mater." Begs he will communicate this enclosure to the other Ports. Copy.

Enclosure; 1618[–19], March 19. The Council to the Lord Warden. —"As your Lordship well knoweth the expidition now extended by his Majestie ageynst the pirates, which is assisted with the power and strength of six of his royal shipes, at his owen charge, hath not only relation to the benefit and advantage of London or any other parteckler place alon, as intumated by the letters from the saide Portes, but moveth especially from his Majesty's princely carre for the security of common trade which may be interrupted as well near [home?] as furder off, and for the saffty of his subjectes that haunt and frequent the seas by way of trafique and commerse, which hath been of late so infested by those sea rovers that the western portes of this realme have within this foure yeers lost neere four hundred sayle of shippinge." This being well known to those of the Cinque Ports" wee find it straunge that they should stick at so poore a thinge as a hundred poundes a year for two yeares for the making up of the contribution opon them, towards so worthy an enterprise." They cannot therefore abade "any one penny" of the assessment, and beg the Lord Warden to act accordingly. Copy.

1618[–19], March 22.—The Mayor and Jurats of Rye to William Ward, Esquire, Lieutenant of Dover Castle.

According to the order and decree made by the Guestling (held at Romney on the 24th of February last) concerning the payment of 200 marks towards the supression of piracy, they send by the bearer "for the five shipps that wee and the toune of Tenderden are charged to pay, towards the first payment"—5l. 10s. and 1l. more "towards the charges of presenting thereof" to the Lord Warden. They would have sent this money before, but waited for the payment by Tenderden of its share which they have not yet received. Copy.

1618–19. March 22. Dover Castle.—William Ward, Mayor of Dover] to [the Mayor and Jurats of Rye].

Has received the Lord Warden's letters requiring diligent execution of the Council's commands concerning the musters. Begs that "in those places where [there] be two bandes, that there, the sellected bande be compleated," and that rolls and certificates of the selected and general bands in every place, both of foot and horse—with their captains and officers and "distinctions" of each sort of arms and furniture, digested into good order and "faire written on parchment," each roll to be signed by the Captain of the band—be sent into the office of Dover Castle not later than the following 3rd of April, "together with true notes of your carriadges, and how your proportions of powder, shott and match, as well for the generall store of each place, as allso for each private man's provision, shall be by that time supplied."


Officers of the general band.

Mr. Richard Gilbridg Captain
Mr. John Pallmer Lieutenant
Mr. Stephen Frencham Engign
Mr. Anthony Worton Marshall
Mr. Lansdall Clarke
John Chestor } Serjantes
Emanuell Dugard
John Rider
Nathaniell Holmes
Peeter Bennett
Francis Daniell
William Lukas
John Rendell Surgeon
John Skinner } Droms
John Bredgat
Thomas Maxwell Fife

The 4:

  • Thomas Mellow
  • Thomas Ashbye
  • Thomas Radforde.
  • Francis Homwod.

1619, May 1. Northiam.—John Frewen to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye.

Approves of their petition. Purposes to begin his journey on Monday about 9 or 10 in the forenoon "and to make a beginning of this busines upon Wednesday," therefore begs that the petition be sent back to him concluding with a request of a grant of letters patent "unto the sayd parishes or one of them" of licence to collect "good willes and benevolences" in London, Westminster, the boroughs and liberties adjoining and the counties of Kent, Essex, Middlesex, Sussex, and Surrey with the cities of Canterbury and Rochester and the Cinque Ports, towards effecting "so publick and necessary a worke." Prays, also, that he may receive without delay "the promised dorser of fish," and he trusts by the success of his pains to give a good account of the fit bestowing of it. Seal.


Petition of the Mayor and Jurats of Rye to the Lord Chancellor setting forth that there "hath beene antiently a certayne wall or causeway raysed cross (sic) the levill of Newenden, lying in the parish of Newenden in the countie of Kent, and Northiam in the countie of Sussex, beinge a common passage betweene both the said counties and the usuall roade waye and thoroughfare betweene the Citye of London and the toune of Rye." And whereas the town of Rye has ever been, and is, very useful in serving with sea-fish both the neighbourhood, the king's court, and the City of London, and also the neighbourhood with salt, corn, and grain, especially "in tyme of dearth," which is brought from parts beyond the seas. The said causeway is much more overflowed than formerly, particularly in winter time, and much decayed by long standing and force of the weather and is consequently dangerous to all persons using it, including the many who daily arrive at Rye from abroad and have no other way by which to go to London or places beyond. All this tends to the decay of navigation, and of late years the "fisher boats" of Rye have fallen in number from forty to sixteen or eighteen, whilst merchant ships are "utterlie gone away." The Commissioners of Sewers "ymportune the said parishes of Newenden and Northiam forthwithe and speedilie" to repair the said causeway. The Petitioners think the necessary charge (400li. at the least) too great for the said parishes to bear, and they therefore pray—[ends abruptly without setting out the nature of the prayer]. Copy.

1619, August 6, Dover Castle.—Richard Marshe to the Mayors, Jurats, &c. of the Cinque Ports.

The Lord Warden has found it needful to hold courts of Admiralty within the Ports, yet he thinks that resort to each particular town, by his Lieutenant, Deputy, or officers, to hold those courts, "would draw very great and excessive charges uppon the inhabitants;" to ease them of such he has decided that one general court of Admiralty should be held at Dover, to which place every Port and ancient town shall send four—and "every other town corporate" two—inhabitants, "beinge marryners, merchants, or other persons of the best sufficiencie." Such persons being assembled, to be empannelled and sworn to enquire upon all matters concerning the Admiralty. The Lord Warden therefore appoints a court to be held at Dover "at the publique place called the Mount uppon the shore of the sea there" on the following 19th of August at 8 o'clock in the morning. Copy.

Appended is "A Schedule conteyning the nomber of persons required to appeare for each towne and place at the court of Admyraltie mentioned."

East Portes.
Dover 4
Ringeswould and Kingesdoune 2
St. Peters in the Isle of Thanet 2
St. John and Margate 2
Burchington 2
Sandwich 4
Deale 2
Walmer 2
Ramsgate 2
Brightlingsea in Essex 2
Fordwich 2
Feversham 2
West Portes.
Folkestone 2
Hithe 4
Newe Romeney 4
Lydd 2
Dengemershe 2
Tenderden Reading and Smalled 2
Rye 4
Winchelsey 4
Hastinges 4
Pevensea 2
Seaford 2

1619, October 9.—An account of a dispute between the Bailiffs of the Ports and the Bailiffs of Yarmouth as to the right of the former to meddle with the conduct of the free fair at Yarmouth.

1619, December 19.—"Phillip Lane."—Lord Zouche to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye.

Hearing your Town clerk is dangerously sick and not likely to recover I pray you admit the bearer Mr. Anthony Tuttisham, the younger, to discharge the office, if it become vacant. Signed.

1619[–20], January 20.—"Phillippe Lane." Lord Zouch to Mr. William Ward, Mayor of Dover.

I am given to understand that Sir Edward Bainton and Mr. Duns are purposed to cross the sea to fight. These are to require you to make search to apprehend the said persons. Copy.

1620, November 20.—William Angell to the Mayor, Jurats, and Commons of Rye.

Requesting them to choose his son, John Angell as one of their burgesses for the Parliament. Signed.

1620, November 28.—London. William Angell to the Mayor and Jurats of Rye.

I have in your behalf attended my Lord Warden about the French fishers and he is pleased to grant his letters, as well to Hastings as to your town, that some course may be taken that the said French may be brought in, boats, nets, and men, and kept in custody until his Lordship be certified thereof that further order may be made by his Honour, as hereafter they shall not dare to fish without special license. His Lordship well knowing my son, has written unto your town on his behalf to make him one of your burgesses, which altogether is in your own choice. His Honour seemed very willing to have given him one of his particular places in the Ports had he not been so exceedingly pressed by great personages for them, because saith he "that both I and my son will endeavour together for the good of the town and that two is better than one." Seal of Arms.

1620, November 28. Clerkenwell.—Lord Zouch to the Mayor Jurats, and Commonalty of Rye.

Requesting them to elect the son of Mr. Angell, his Majesty's fishmonger, as burgess of their town for Parliament. Signed. Seal of Arms.

1620, December 1. Whitehall.—T. Edmondes to the Mayor, Jurats and Commonalty of Rye.

Requesting their favour on behalf of Mr. John Angell, to elect him one of their burgesses for the Parliament. Seal of Arms.

1620, December 2. Whitehall.—The Duke of Lennox to the Mayor Jurats and Commons of Rye.

Requesting their favour on behalf of Mr. John Angell, one of his Majesty's pensioners in ordinary, to elect him one of their burgesses for the Parliament. Seal of Arms.

1620, December 4. Tenterden.—Samuel Short to the Mayor, Jurats, and Commonalty of Rye.

Offering his services as a burgess to Parliament for the town of Rye. Seal of Arms.

1620, December 18. Clerkenwell.—Lord Zouch to the Mayor Jurats and Commonalty of Rye.

Whereas you have ever used, on the commendation of the Lord Warden, to elect one of the burgesses you are to choose for the Parliament, it hath been my care to find out such a sufficient gentleman as I thought would be forward, not only to advance the good of the Ports in general, but ready to do and stand for the good of your town in particular, his name is Mr. Emannuell Gifford, who (though peradventure not well known to you) is my ancient acquaintance. I think it needless for him to be sworn a freeman of your town. Signed. Seal broken.

1620, December 23.—The Mayor, Jurats and Commons of Rye [to William Angell].

According to your request we have chosen Mr. John Angell for one of our burgesses for the Parliament.

1620, December 25.—William Angell to the Mayor Jurats and Commons of Rye.

This present Christmas day about nine of the clock I received your most loving letter, wherein I understand you have made my son John Angell one of your burgesses for the Parliament, by which I perceive your loves, and return you many thanks. Seal.