The corporation of Bury St. Edmunds: Guildhall muniment room

The Manuscripts of Lincoln, Bury St. Edmunds Etc. Fourteenth Report, Appendix; Part VIII. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1895.

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Historical Manuscripts Commission, 'The corporation of Bury St. Edmunds: Guildhall muniment room', in The Manuscripts of Lincoln, Bury St. Edmunds Etc. Fourteenth Report, Appendix; Part VIII, (London, 1895) pp. 155-158. British History Online [accessed 28 May 2024].

Historical Manuscripts Commission. "The corporation of Bury St. Edmunds: Guildhall muniment room", in The Manuscripts of Lincoln, Bury St. Edmunds Etc. Fourteenth Report, Appendix; Part VIII, (London, 1895) 155-158. British History Online, accessed May 28, 2024,

Historical Manuscripts Commission. "The corporation of Bury St. Edmunds: Guildhall muniment room", The Manuscripts of Lincoln, Bury St. Edmunds Etc. Fourteenth Report, Appendix; Part VIII, (London, 1895). 155-158. British History Online. Web. 28 May 2024,


The earliest deeds relating to the town property are concerned with the possessions of the hospital of St. Peter, which are now attached to the Grammar School. They are contained in a parcel of documents chiefly of the time of Henry III. and Edw. I. But one is found amongst these of the time of Hen. II., which is as follows:—"Sciant presentes et futuri quod ego Salomon do Wepstede concessi et dedi et hac presenti carta mea confirmavi ad hospitale sancti Petri extra portam de Risebi suburbio sancti Ædmundi duodecim denariatos redditus ad luminaria coram altare sancte Marie infra ecclesie (sic) predicti hospitalis sancti Petri, percipiendos predictcs denarios de Stephano filio Durondi de Neutone de illa terra que [sic] tenuit de me, et que jacet inter terram predicti Stephani et terram que fuit Gileberto [sic] fil. Gileberti de garra, percipiendos predictos duodecim denarios de predicto Stephano et de heredibus suis ad duos terminos anni, scilicet al Pascha vi. den. et ad fest. S. Mich. vi. den. Et ideo volo et concedo ut hec donacio firma sit et stabilis in elemosina pro anima mea, et parentum meorum in perpetuum. Hiis testibus, domino Roberto de Hornigeserde, domino Roberto de Hauste, Adam de Phalesha preposito Sancti Ædmundi, Wdardo aldermanno, Roberto clerico de Neutune, Radulfo filio suo et Waltero filio suo, Thome [sic] filio Salemanni, Waltero filio Gerardi, Ancelmo filio Aldredi." Small oval seal: "Sigillum Salomonis."

The following are specimens of the other oldest deeds found in the same parcel:—

1. Temp. Hen. III. or Edw: I.—Grant from William son of Robert de Hepewr[th] to Walter son of Stephen, for 3s. of half an acre in Hepewr[th] called Gustes. Witn. Sir Will. de Neketun, John son of Ralph, Nicholas son of Foleker, &c. Seal lost.

2. Temp. Hen. III.—Grant from Willian son of Thomas de Garboldesham and Mary his mother, daughter of John de Whepstede. to the hosp. of St. Peter of 14½d. of annual rent paid by Benedict de Schardebroc for a meadow at Schardebroc in Whepstede. Witn. Sir Henry de Neketune, Sir Tho. de Ickewurthe, Sir John de Welnetham, knts., &c. Seal lost.

3. Temp. Hen. III.—Grant from Scientia widow of Gilbert de la Gaye to the hosp. of St. Peter of 10s. of annual rent from a building in Bury, in return for which Robert de Baketone, clerk, then prior of the hosp., and the brethren, grant to her one weekly mass for her soul, the souls of her ancestors, and the souls of the brethren dying in the hospital, for ever; and what is left of the rent after paying for the masses is to be given in shoes to the brethren. If any one should endeavour to make the grant void, let him know that he will be excommunicated by the mouth of dom. Clement de Salomondesford, almoner of St. Eadmund. Witn. Sir Stephen, alderman of St. Eadmund, Jocey and Thomas, provosts, John son of Luke, &c. Seal of donor, indistinct; a figure kneeling before another under a canopy.

4. Temp. Hen. III.—Indenture of release from William de Liveremere prior of the hosp. of St. Peter, and the brethren, to John le Ferur of Bury of 4s. out of an annual rent of 10s. from a shop in Mustowe. A street called Frenkysemanestrete is mentioned. Witn. Geoffrey son of Robert, alderman, Nicholas son of Fulk, bailiff, Richard le Crosier, John de Pastone, &c. Small seal.

5. Temp. Hen. III.?—Grant from John son of Warin the smith of Heppurhe to Thomas son of Will. de Bucham for 5s. of one rood and a half in the field of Heppurhe called Whatecroft. Witn. John son of Ralph, Nich. de Cunegester, Fraric, &c. Seal lost.

6. Temp. Edw. I.—Grant from Thomes de Stantone to Will. le Bret for 8s. of land in the parish ("parochia") of Heppeworth. Witn. Robert le Engynuir, Will. de Thelnetham, Ralph Thurald, &c. Oval seal: "Sig. decani de Thomsant" (?)

[Robert le Engynur, of Westone, witnesses the following dated deed of 1290, and with Ralph Thurald that of 1295.]

7. [1290] 18 Edw. I.—Grant from John Gris to William le Bret and Isabella his wife.

8. [1295] 23 Edw. I.—Grant from Walter son of Adam Baf of Heporthe to William le Bret.

Rent-roll: "Redditus Johannis le Bret de Heppeworth;" apparently at the beginning of the 14th cent., about the end of the reign of Edw. I.

Taxation roll of the town of Bury, 14 Edw. III, 1340. "Taxacio pro ixa garbarum, vellerum et agnorum domino Regi concess. ao r. r. Edw. tercii a conquestu xiiij." The acreage of the land comprised in the taxation is thus summed up:—"Summa tocius vill. terre burg. ixc xli acr. Summa tocins preter sacrist. mc. vic. iiijxx xvii acr. et dim." The total money-value of the tax is 9l. 0s. 9d.

Long roll of accounts of the Treasurer or Chamberlain of the abbey, mutilated in the heading, by which the words marking the date are lost. The treasurer was one Nicholas, and the period is that of the abbacy of W[illiam de Burnham], who was abbot from 1335 to 1361. Internal evidence, however, narrows the limit of years to 1349—1353.

Specially notable entries are the following. In expenses on visits of the King on 1 March and of the Queen on the morrow of the Assumption [16 Aug.] 78l. 0s. 8d., including a palfrey for the Prince 9l., for the King 20l., and 20l. given to the Queen in money. The special provisions bought cost 12l. 13s. 3½d. Gifts to lords Mortimer and John Lyle. [Roger Mortimer was restored to the barony in 1348 and created earl of March in 1354; lord L'Isle was killed in France in Feb. 1355.] Gifts to the judges Rich. de Kelsille [1342–55] and Geoffrey de Hedirsete. [This judge's name does not seem to be met with: Simon de Hedirsete was a justice itinerant in the earlier years of the reign of Edw. III.] Twenty-six shillings and eightpence were paid to Ellen Hochard for debts of [the preceding] Abbot Richard [de Draughton]. Total of receipts, 750l. 19s. 8d.; of expenses, 542l. 17s. 1½d.

1378–1481. Six rolls of bailiffs' accounts of the manor of the Grange, for the years 1–2 Rich. II, 2–3, 13–14 Hen. IV., 38 Hen. VI., 9 and 20–21 Edw. IV.

One drawer is filled with terriers, of which the earliest is of the lands of John Odeham in Bury, Great and Little Horningsheath, and Westlee, 10 March, 8 Edw. IV. [1468].

1520–1.—"Computus dompni Johannis Fynnyngham et Simonis Berdwell, feretrar. monast. S. Edmundi," from Mich. 12 to Mich. 13 Hen. VIII. The following are a few of the interesting items in this roll: "Hominibus et mulieribus de bano ad f. Pentecostes pro custodia baculorum peregrinorum per annum ijs [i e. payment to persons within the abbey district for taking charge of pilgrims' staves] Item, xii junioribus confratribus nostris pro turribulis portandis ad dictum festum, xxiiijs. Item, duobus feretrariis pro suo labore per annum, iiijli." 12d for ginger for the Prior in Lent. "Pro beornis (?) emptis pro le Oo, xijd. Pro pane empto pro vipis paradisi iiijd. [Paradise-food, Paradise-sops, bread steeped in wine so called?] Pro Malvesee empto pro dictis vipis, iiijd." Spiced bread and Malmsey for the prior. "In farina pro nebulis ijd. [fine fancy bread]; in bastardo [Spanish wine] pro eisdem ijd." Strong beer; cloves; 9 lbs. of almonds, 22d; 8 lbs. of "ryss," 16d; 1 lb. "ryss flower" [rice-flour] 4d; 1 oz. cinnamon 4d; &c. To minstrels on St. Edmund's day, in the absence of the abbot 3s. To men who came with a camel, by the prior's order, 1d. To the [boy-]bishop of St. Nicholas, 12d. To the minstrels of the King, the Prince, and lord Curson, and to others playing in the hall, by order of the prior, 2s. 4d. An altar "juxta pietatem beate Marie" [the Image of Pity] is mentioned. Sixpence was given weekly "in elemosina monialibus do banco" (?) To a monk of St. Katharine's "montis Sinay" twelve pence were given by the prior's order; and ten shillings for a contribution made for St. James's Church in Bury. A fee of 10s. was customarily paid by the shrine-keepers, together with other fees from the rest of the obedientiaries, on the occasion of theological degrees being taken at the universities by members of the Abbey, and we here find this sum paid to Edward Rowham "pro gradu doctoris theologie suscipiendo, secundum antiquam consuetudinem," with 6s. 8d. added by the prior's order. (fn. 1) For cleaning St. Edmund's sword 4d.; for repairing it 6d.; to the two shrine-keepers for carrying it through the year, 5s. To dom. Richard Stowe, precentor, for the year, 34s. For expenses about the singers in the chapel of St. Robert, in the time of divine service on his feast, 2s. 9d. To dom. John Eye, the penitentiary, for the said chapel, 3s. 4d. Sum of receipts 37l. 18s. 9d.; of expenses 36l. 16s. 1½d.

William Dunn Macray.


  • 1. In Mr. C. W. Boase's Register of the Univ. of Oxf., 1885, p. 109, he appears under the year 1519 in this entry:—"Rowham Edmund [read Edward] Benedictine, B.D., disp. 27 March, 1519, 14 Apr." He was sacrist in 1537–8; see p. 4.