The corporation of Lincoln: Registers, vol. IV (1564-99)

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 Lincoln: Registers, vol. IV (1564-99)', in The Manuscripts of Lincoln, Bury St. Edmunds Etc. Fourteenth Report, Appendix; Part VIII, (London, 1895) pp. 58-75. British History Online [accessed 25 May 2024].

Historical Manuscripts Commission. "The corporation of Lincoln: Registers, vol. IV (1564-99)", in The Manuscripts of Lincoln, Bury St. Edmunds Etc. Fourteenth Report, Appendix; Part VIII, (London, 1895) 58-75. British History Online, accessed May 25, 2024,

Historical Manuscripts Commission. "The corporation of Lincoln: Registers, vol. IV (1564-99)", The Manuscripts of Lincoln, Bury St. Edmunds Etc. Fourteenth Report, Appendix; Part VIII, (London, 1895). 58-75. British History Online. Web. 25 May 2024,

Registers, vol. IV (1564-99)

Vol. IV. A folio volume of 255 leaves, extending from Mich. 6 Eliz. 1564 to Mich. 41 Eliz. 1599. Foliated by a contemporary hand at the foot of the leaves.

On a fly-leaf prefixed, mutilated at the edges, is the following curious Christmas poem, spoken or sung by the three city waits [representatives by their title of Senators, of the Three Wise Men?] as a warning beforehand for the right keeping of Christmas time, a ceremony called "Crying Christmas." [See under 1571 infra.] The leaf is headed "Anno xxv. Officii Willelmi Hynde communis clerici civitatis Lincoln," i.e. 1565, as appears from the heading of the first leaf of the Register itself.

"The first Senatour.

The Maker allmyghtye, the grounde of alle grace, Save this congregation that be here present, And bryng them all to the celestyall place That with pacyens wyll here the effect of our intent.

The second Senatour.

Oure intent and purpose is auncyent customes to deelare That haue ben vsed in this citie manye yeres ago, And nowe for to breake them we wysshe ye schuld beware, For ther be grevous ponysshment for them yt wyll do soe.

The thurd Senatour.

At the tyme of Cristmas myrthe hath ben made Throughout all nacyons of the Crystiane faith, And styll so to keip it ye nede not be affrayde, For then was our Savyour bourn as the Scripture saith.

The first Senatour.

At that tyme saith Saynt Johne appeared our perfight lyght And the Saveyour of all the world yt faithfully trust in hym. Saynt Luke in ye second chapitour declaryng his strenght and myght, Therfore at that tyme to be merye we wyssh ye schuld begyn.

The second Senatour.

The Aungelles with myrthe the schepperdes did obey, When they song Gloria in excelsis in tuynes mystycall, The byrdes wt solemnytye song on every spray, And the beastes for joye made reuerence in there stall.

The thurd Senatour.

Therfore wt a contrite hart let hus be merye all Havyng a stedfast faith and a love most amyable, Disdaynyng no man of power greate nor small. For a crewell oppressour is nothyng commendable.

The furst Senatour.

Whatsoeuer oppressor wyll be cruelle and not merye make Schal be sore fettered in a dongion full deip Wherin is todes and miteis wt many a gret snayk, That place is so dark you schall not se your fete.

Second Senatour.

Therfore Crystmas myrth I wold ye schuld esteme, And to feare God and schewe ye deides of charyty boithe man and wyff, Orelles the people wyll assemble wt weapons scherpe and keene, Wherfore it wyll not prevaile to make any stryff.

Thurd Senatour.

Bycause that holye tyme all good people do prepare Aswell kynges and quenes that is of most noble byrthe, As also dukes, erles and lordes royally wyll faire, And spend the tyme of Crystmas wt joye and myrthe.

The first Senatour.

Forsomuch as all degrees within this r . . . . . . Do hyghly esteym the tyme of Cry . . . . . . To breke yt honourable custom I wold none to . . . . . But spend ye tyme in hearyng and folowyng Gods word.

Second Senatour.

That is the cheiff cause hither we were sent To gyve the people warnyng to have all things perfightly, For they that do not breakyth Mr Mayours comaundement And accordyng to the order ponysshed must they be.

Thurd Senatour.

Therfore endevour your selffes to have all thinges well, That no default be found neyther of riche nor pore But at that tyme help your neighbures as S. James doth [tell ?] Refresshyng the pouertye yt cummyth to ye dore.

First Senatour.

Breiffly we have declared theffect of our mynd And I do not doubt but you wyll have it in remembraynce, One neighbour to another I wyssh ye schuld be kynde, For ye tyme doith so spend nedes we must goo fro[m hence ?]

The Second Senatour.

Here we cannot tary, the tyme passith . . . . . . This mortall worlde is but van[ity] . . . . . . All magistrates and rulers we wold ye sch[uld] . . . . . Walkyng in your . . . . . .

The [thurd Senatour].

The eternall Lord haue . . . . . . Unto other places . . . . . . Power vpon you th . . . . . . He yt all thynges . . . . . .

1565, 7 Eliz.—John Hochynson, mayor, "anno xxv. officii Willelmi Hynde clerici communis." f. 1.

—, Jan. 20.—The lease of St. John's churchyard to be bought of John Grene, and a decent wall against the High Street to be made. f. 2.

—, June 9.—The tower at the Eastbargate which is decayed and fallen down to be set up and amended. f. 3b.

—, —. Mr. Richard Byrkyt to be vicar of Hemmyswell, at the instance of Mr. Elmer, archdeacon of Lincoln. f. 4.

—, Aug. 25.—The decayed town wall from the Westbargate unto the old Tower to be mended. f. 5.

The charter of the Tilers, Masons, Bricklayers, Plasterers, Pavers, Tilemakers, Glasiers, Limemakers, Milners [Millers] and Thekers [Thatchers]; in eleven ordinances. It begins with a paragraph similar to the introductory paragraph of the charters noticed before. f. 6.

Four officers to be yearly chosen; one to be graceman and master, two to be wardens, and one to be dean.

—, —. "A note what implements of goods were lefte in the parsonage of Hemmyswell at the entre of William Dalyson, esquier, into the same." f. 7.

"In primis, in the parlour one table standyng of ii trestelles in the ground.

Item, in the same parlour, ix paynes of newe whyte glasse.

Item, in the same parlour, in the west wyndowe iii paynes of glasse."

Other glass in the chamber over the parlour and in the east parlour, and in the chamber above. In the hall two glazed windows on the south side, and a table on trestles. One frame for a door. A stable, five ox stalls, and a shed.

—, Oct. 4.—At a Secret Council. Alderman William Goodknappe having confessed what he had previously denied, that he had converted 10l. to his own use which he had received for the city, he is bound over to repay the same with a fine of 5l., but allowed to remain an alderman. f. 7b. But on the 25 Jan. following he is released from this payment altogether on condition that he do not hereafter claim in the right of his uncle Ralph Goodknappe any debts due to him from the city. f. 17b.

The mayor and two aldermen sign the former entry with their marks.

1566, Jan. 26.—Agreed that the stage-play of the story of Toby shall go forward and be played in Whitson holydays next; the common chamber to bear 4l. towards the charges, and the orderers thereof to be appointed by the mayor and his brethrer. f. 10b.

1566, March 9.—The mayor's cook to have 10s. for a reward, in consideration that it is thought him not to be meet to serve again. f. 11.

—, May 28.—William Vaughan to be vicar of Hanslape. f. 12.

—, —. The lead and timber of St. John's steeple in Wikford to be taken to the use of the common chamber. Ibid.

—, July 9.—Westgate bridge to be amended and repaired with stones taken from St. Augustine's church. f. 12b.

—, —. Five marks yearly for his life granted to Thomas Wright, late alderman, in consideration that he is poor and sick and cannot help himself. f. 13.

—, —. Agreed that the Wrights in this city shall have a charter. Ibid.

—, Aug. 22. Agreed that Hugh Pye, freemason, for that he is a good workman, shall have his franchise for 25s. and the officers' fees. f. 14b.

—, Sept. 14.—All such persons as have contemptuously departed out of the hall after their coming for the election of mayor and sheriffs, to be bound over to appear at the next sessions to answer to such things as shall be objected against them, or else to be imprisoned. f. 15.

—, Dec. 5.—For avoiding of many great hurts, hindrances, and enormities of late time crept into this city as well by evil rule in alehouses, being brewers, victualling-house keepers, and tippling houses, as also by the continued and daily resort, long-being and continuing of divers and many workmen, craftsmen and labourers in the same houses, there loitering and drinking of over-strong and mighty ale, to the increase of idleness and drunkenness, it is ordered that the mayor and justices of the peace shall forthwith appoint of the best and most honest inhabitants, meet for the purpose, to be common brewers and tipplers, and such persons shall sell their ale or beer to the tipplers by dozens and half-dozens to the tippler to be assigned, and not to sell any ale or beer in their houses; and every tippler that shall be assigned, to sell ale or beer by half-pennyworths or pennyworths, or by pots out of the house, and none otherwise, and only at such prices as the mayor from time to time shall appoint. f. 17.

—, —. Order to be taken to prevent certain persons of the town of Bardney from repairing inordinately to Lincoln on marketdays to make corn dearer. f. 17b.

1567, June 12.—John Drope, B.A., to be usher of the free school. f. 18b.

—, Oct. 15.—Twenty chaldron of coals to be bought, from Newcastle, to be sold to the poor and to none other. f. 21.

—, —. No person that wears any livery of noblemen or gentlemen to be hereafter of the Common Council. f. 21b.

—, —. Similar orders to those given above respecting beersellers, adding that all brewers shall have small ale and single beer for poor people, and that all victuallers and tipplers shall spar in their doors at the time of divine service and sermon time. Ibid.

—, Nov. 24.—Letters to be written to the Privy Council for license for 20 strangers, householders, of good ability and good artificers, who have lately come to the city. f. 22b.

1566, Nov. 24. The stage play of the story of old Toby, contained in the Old Testament, shall be played at the feast of Pentecost next, and the city shall bear towards the charges 6l. 13s. 4d. f. 22b.

—, —. Six (in the next year, seven) poor men to have livery gowns at 3s. 4d. the yard. Ibid.

1568, March 20.—A pot of silver, lost by Mr. Ellys in his mayoralty, to be made of 16¼ ounces. f. 23b.

—, —. The mayor, instead of a butt of sack, to have half in sack and half in malmsey. Ibid.

—, —. John Staynton, Mr. Archdeacon's servant, to be usher of the free school. Ibid.

—, May 8.—Dispute with Cambridge about tolls; search to be made in the Exchequer whether the charter of Lincoln or Cambridge be the older. f. 24b.

—, —. Forasmuch as Robert Mounson, esq., is pleased to make a free school of his own charges in the late Grey Friars, it is ordered that he shall have all the glass remaining in the free school towards the glazing of the windows in the new school. Ibid.

—, —. The way to the "Cross of the Cliff" to be mended. Ibid.

—, May 29.—20l. allowed towards the rebuilding of the mansionhouse and buildings appertaining to the parsonage of Belton, which had been all burned. f. 25.

—, June 19.—The mayor bought at London, of John Franklen at the sign of the Queen's Head at the corner shop in St. Paul's Churchyard, four dozen leather water-buckets for the city, which, with carriage and hanging in the hall, cost 5l. 12s. 6d. Ibid.

—, July 8.—Two bookbinders admitted freemen. f. 25b. But one of them, Rich. Smyth, forgiven his franchise money, if he will leave the city. f. 32b.

—, —. Complaint made that little hospitality is kept at Hanslape parsonage, that there is no service at Castlethorpe, and the church of Hanslape is not well served, that the curate is badly paid, not quarterly but scantly once in the year; letters to be written to the farmer for a reformation, and that the curate have the churchyard for a reasonable rent. Ibid.

—, Aug. 9 and 19. Further grants made towards the re-building of Belton parsonage at the instance of the Privy Council. f. 26. 1569, Jan. 26.—A new lease. f. 31b.

—, Sept. 18.—No inhabitant of the city to lend feather-beds or bedding for lucre to innholders or other inhabitants of the bail, to the hurt of the innholders and inhabitants of the city. f. 27.

—, —. Where [as] persons who have been aldermen or sheriffs, on Sundays, holy days and market-days undecently go abroad with cloaks or other undecent raiment, and also with gowns, wearing hats, contrary to good order, it is agreed that anyone so doing shall forfeit twenty pence. Ibid.

—, Oct. 14.—Where[as] one cup of silver double gilt, parcel of the common plate appertaining to the city which was lost and hurt by Mr. [Leo] Ellys in the time of his mayoralty, should have been delivered whole and sound and as good as he received it, it is agreed that he shall be compelled to make the residue [of the plate] as good as he received it, and deliver it and the cup he lost before Christmas next upon pain of 10l. f. 29.

1568, Dec. 22.—At a Secret Council, agreed to give to Lord Willoughby a present of two fat pikes and two breams, and to the Recorder, who hath of late taken pains for the business of the city with certain of the Privy Council, two fat swans, or one fat swan and a fat turkey-cock. f. 29b.

—, —. Mention of the cross called the "Quenes Crosse." Ibid.

1569, Jan. 19.—The proclamation of the city called the Mayor's cry, as now newly corrected and amended according to the statutes of the realm and the ancient customs of the city, shall be good and effectual hereafter. f. 30b.

—, —. The charter of the city and the last pardon of a tax under the privy seal to be pleaded for discharge of a writ for gathering a tax. Ibid.

—, —. Thomas Marsshe, stationer, shall have word to give attendance at the lottery now at the drawing thereof in the city of London for the adventure of this city, for the 7l. 10s. lately put into the same. f. 31.

—, March 1.—Mr. Ellys brought in a silver cup with a cover double gilt weighing 14 ounces at 6s. the oz. f. 33.

—, March 5.—The tax of a fifteenth and a deodand discharged. Ibid.

—, —. Ordinances for orphans' goods devised and established for the town of Newark were openly read and well liked of, and it was ordained that the like ordinances should be drawn in form to take place for ever in this city. Ibid.

—, —. It shall be lawful for all freemen to buy wood, coal, thakkes, or turf, for the relief of the poor, to be retailed and sold in the winter time, so that the price be always rated by the mayors &c. Ibid.

—, —. All the gears of St. Anne's guild remaining in a tenement next to St. Benedict's churchyard shall be laid and kept in the lower chamber in the Guildhall, which shall be repaired for the same with speed. f. 33b.

—, —. Some of the stones of St. Katherine's church to be kept for use, and the rest to be sold at one penny the cartload. Ibid.

—, March 10.—The Bishop and Justices of assize to have presents of pikes, breams or perches, tenches and eels, at their coming. Ibid. Similar entries at subsequent dates.

—, March 12.—Marks assigned to three bakers for distinguishing their bread by pricks. f. 34.

—, May 30.—At a court leet, agreed that any fraunchestman wearing the livery of any nobleman or gentleman before he bear office in the city may continue in such service with the license of the mayor, etc., the law and ordinance made in the time of Edw. IV. to the contrary notwithstanding. f. 34b. See Oct 8, infra.

—, July 9.—Ald. George Stampe sequestered and displaced until the next Common Council for troubling the sheriffs at Westminster when they were there about the great business of the city, whereby a Quo warranto is like to come against the liberties of the city. f. 35b.

—, June 15.—Case of alleged unlawful distraint by the sheriffs against one Thomas Wynterbourne, supposed to be outlawed, tried in the Star Chamber, in which the sheriffs are cleared, and a clerk to one of the secondaries of the court committed to the Fleet for falsely erasing the writ of outlawry: Wynterbourne is subsequently disfranchised. ff. 36, 37. Bound over, at the request of noblemen who have written on his behalf, to stand to arbitration, Jan. 12, 1570. f. 45b. [See under 1585.]

1569, Sept. 1.—Ordinances established for orphans and their portions. ff. 36b, 37b–39.

—, Sept. 21.—Verdict by the jury before the commissioners for concealed lands in Bucks that there is not any sufficient evidence to find any concealed lands in Stock-Goldington or Castlethorpe, with a copy of a presentment made by one George Byrchemore, "I say that the " parsonage of Castylthorpe is ruinous and not well served, and there" fore must needs be concealed." f. 41b.

—, —. Oath of the searchers and sealers of tanned leather and curried leather. f. 42, 42b.

—, Oct. 8.—All freemen on admission to be sworn to the oath made in the time of Edw. IV. concerning the wearing of liveries, f. 44.

—, Dec. 28.—No artificer or labourer, under the degree of a chamberlain of the city, after monition by proclamation shall be or remain in any alehouse, etc. in the city on any work-day to drink or spend any money for any ale, beer, or any other thing there to be found, upon pain of 4d., or go to the Close or Bail for the same under pain of 8d., half the penalties for the prosecutor and half for the poor. f. 46b. Also on Oct. 10, 1579. f. 115.

—, —. Every alderman to provide four clamps of iron, for each ward, for casualty of fire. Ibid.

1570, March 10.—A writ (dated Feb. 13) sued out by one Mr. Bowyer for search for concealed lands. ff. 47b, 48.

—, May 18.—Ale to be sold at 2½d. the gallon and beer at 2d. the gallon, upon pain of 40d. f. 48b.

—, June 13.—A swan-mark to be bought of Thomas Wynterbourne, which was lately William Yatts', alderman, deceased. f. 49.

—, July 12.—Antony Thorold resigns the Recordership, to which Robert Mounson is appointed at his request, but the former to have 40s. yearly for life for continuing his counsel. f. 49b.

—, —. The master of the poor folks lately appointed to have 20s. yearly for keeping the bar-gates, and 20s. for the order of the poor, and driving away and punishing of vagabonds, strange beggars, and poor people out of the city. Ibid.

—, —. Such persons as refuse to pay as they are assessed towards the setting forth of soldiers for the service of the Queen shall be kept in ward till they make payment. f. 50.

—, Oct. 22.—The outgoing mayor gives up these parcels of plate: three goblets, whereof one with a cover double gilt, two drinking pots double gilt, whereof one with a cover; the three goblets weighing 82 ozs. and the two pots 36½ ozs. f. 53.

1571, Feb. 22.—Twelve persons to be bound over to appear at the next assizes for riotously cutting down and carrying away trees. f. 54b.

—, March 24.—Dr. Wilson, Master of St. Katherine's in London and one of the Masters of Requests, to have the freedom of the city, and to be one of the citizens in the next Parliament beginning April 2, and the Recorder to be the other. f. 55a, b.

—, —. Privies to be made in the prison called the Kitchen and in other prisons in the city. Ibid.

1571, March 24.—The second sword and the red velvet hat to be new covered. f. 55b.

—, March 27.—Alderman [John] Welcome to be solicitor for the affairs of the city at Parliament, at 4s. a day. Ibid.

—, —. If a tax be granted, a discharge to be speedily sued for; and an Act to be procured discharging all penalties against the Under Sheriffs and their clerks, and that they may continue to occupy their office from year to year as the Under-sheriffs of London do. Ibid.

—, —. Where[as] within the county of Lincoln, timber, wood, coal, thakk, turf and other necessaries have been almost clearly felled, taken away, consumed and spent by many greedy persons, owners of the same since the dissolution of the late religious houses, to the great decay of the poor ancient city of Lincoln, formerly served out of the said county with these necessaries for the relief of the said city and for setting the poor people on work; and for that there is yet some plenty of timber, &c. within the counties of Nottingham, Derby and York next adjoining, whence the said poor city could be well served if the same could be brought by water; [it is desired] that an Act of Parliament may be made for a commission to assess all persons within seven miles of the city for the dyking, cleansing and scouring of Foss-dyke, in order that sufficient water may be brought from the Trent to bring the said timber, etc. f. 56.

Also that an Act may be procured that all penalties incurred by virtue of any statutes or proclamations by inhabitants of the city may be assigned to the city. Ibid.

—, May 21.—At a Secret Council. The water that should serve the most part of the city being stopped that the people cannot have any conduit water, to their great hurt and danger of life by reason of corrupt water, and for that the common waters of the city are now low and something corrupt by reason of certain sinkers from kitchens, stables, swine-sties, and such other corrupt places descending into the said common waters, whereby great infection is like to ensue, it is agreed that every person, of what estate soever, shall before Sunday next, reform and correct all such sinkers and corrupt places, so as all infection of water may be avoided, upon pain of imprisonment for four days and four nights without bail. and 40s. in money; and no fishmongers shall hereafter put their fishwater into any waterchannels but shall convey it away into other meet places. f. 56b.

—, —. Orders for beer brewers. f. 57.

—, Oct. 31.—85 pieces of evidences relating to Thomas Grantham's lands, deceased, delivered in. f. 61.

—, —. An annuity of 5l. granted to Nicholas Catskyn, clerk, so long as he shall be chaplain to the mayor for the time being, and for preaching as well at the parsonages appertaining to the city as also within the city. f. 61b. "Sir" Nicholas Catskyn, clerk, preacher, to have 5l. more wages yearly and a livery gown to the value of 45s., Apr. 12, 1572. f. 63b.

—, —. The old robes which the officers cried Christmas withal to be made into decent cloaks for the said officers to cry the same yearly withal hereafter, and the rest of the utensils where the robes lie, which be of small value, to be sold. Ibid.

—, —. 26s. 8d. granted to Robert Marshall's son, a student at Christ's College, Cambridge, towards his exhibition. Ibid.

[Continual notices occur at this period of law-suits in London on various disputes and complaints.]

1572, April 12.—Hugh Pye, freemason, to have his freedom for 26s. 8d. and the officers' fees, so that he will remain in the city to work when he shall be required by the mayor for the time being. f. 63b.

—, May 20.—Order respecting the mode of election of the Common Council, for the avoiding of contentions of late time stirred by the sheriffs and certain freemen. f. 64.

—, Aug. 4.—Two fat pikes and one bream to be given to the Earl of Cumberland, Lord Zouche, and the Dean of Lincoln. f. 65.

—, Sept.—At a Secret Council. The Earl of Lincoln at his coming to have a present of two fat pikes and six gallons of sack wine; and all the charges of himself and his children, with their wives and ordinary servants, during his being here, to be borne by the common chamber. Ibid.

—, Nov. 3.—Constables appointed to search out persons absenting themselves, without lawful impediment or license from the mayor, from attendance at sermons in the Minster every Sunday; such persons to be fined 2d. f. 69.

—, Dec. 9.—The stones of the crosses appertaining to the city which were lately cast down, viz., Butter Cross and the Cross in the late parish of St. Cuthbert, shall be gathered up and laid in some certain place to the use of the common chamber. f. 70b.

1573, Jan. 31.—Lands and tenements bought of Thomas Grantham for 210l. f. 71b.

—, March 16.—John Welcome displaced for ever of his aldermanship and any office, for various offences of opprobrious language and factious proceedings, and for disclosing to Dr. Wilson a secret letter from the mayor and aldermen to Justice Mounson the Recorder, by discovery whereof he did what he could to procure the displeasure of Dr. Wilson to the city, who hath been a very good and dear friend to the same. f. 72b.

—, June 4.—Richard Bunche appointed Town-clerk on the death of Will. Hynde [who had been clerk for 33 years]. f. 74.

—, June 7.—Copy of a letter from the Privy Council with certain articles to be observed by persons who have grants of forfeitures under the penal laws, for the avoiding of murmurs among the people. f. 79.

1574, Jan. 14.—10l. to be given yearly to a schoolmaster, and citizens to be asked what they will give of good will. f. 79b. The whole city to be assessed for the master, Feb. 19, 1575. f. 87.

[The settlement with the Earl of Rutland about his fee-farm rent is frequently under discussion about this time. And there are many cases of disfranchisement.]

1575, Feb. 19.—The great charter of the city to be enrolled in the Queen's Bench. f. 86b. A further order on Oct. 11, 1578. f. 109b.

—, Aug. 23.—No unfranchised man shall open any shop-windows, nor set any parchment or other wares in the streets to make any shew of sale, under pain of forfeiture of the wares. f. 88.

Articles of agreement and arbitrament respecting enclosures, made between the Dean and Chapter of Lincoln, the Prior of St. Katherine's, the Master of Burton Lazars, and others, on the one part, and the Mayor and Commonalty of Lincoln on the other, Jan. 12, 2 Hen. VIII. (1511). f. 92b.

1576, July 10.—Master Plumtre mentioned as schoolmaster. f. 95b.

—, Sept. 15.—Agreed that the Mayor shall have yearly three hundred of "furres kyddes" of the "fures" growing at Bishop's bridge. f. 97.

—, Dec. 5.—William Mayson to be usher of the free school, and to have yearly 4l. and a frieze gown. f. 100.

A payment of 6s. 8d. yearly assigned to the clerk of Great St. Peter's, instead of St. Mary, for ringing the bell at 5 a.m. and 9 p.m. Ibid.

None but freemen to come to the Mayor's breakfast, and to come orderly in their gowns, upon pain of 3s. 4d. Ibid.

Every alderman, sheriff and chamberlain to ride with the Mayor about the fairs on the two fair-days. Ibid.

Christmas mirth to be proclaimed in ten or twelve places, and every alderman, etc. to ride with the officers. Ibid.

1577, Feb. 16.—Every housekeeper, except poor people, to pay towards the killing of moles one penny. f. 101.

—, Sept. 30.—The late mayor brought in all the plate, that is to say, a bason and ewer parcel gilt, three goblets with a cover double gilt, three silver pots with a cover double gilt, and a great salt with a cover double gilt. f. 104b. This inventory is yearly repeated.

—, Nov. 20.—License to — Powle, alias Powley, to teach children to write, and such other learning as he can teach, within the city. f. 105.

1578, Sept. 14.—John Hyrd, son of Anthony Hyrd, to be usher of the school at Christmas, (fn. 1) with 4l. yearly and 10s. for a frieze gown, and Mayson, now usher, then to depart. f. 108b.

—, Oct. 11.—6l. 13s. 4d. to be yearly paid to a learned man, to be appointed with the advice of the Dean, to be reader in the Minster and to preach weekly upon Wednesday in some parish church. f. 109b.

1579, Feb. 26.—William Knowles appointed usher in the free school, because John Hyrd cannot attend at the time appointed. f. 111.

—, July 28.—Answer to a letter from the Earl of Leicester dated from the Court July 13, in which he desired that a lease in reversion of the parsonage of Belton may be given to William Fernes, with the reasons of the Corporation for refusing to give it. f. 112. But the lease is granted on Jan. 11 following. ff. 116, 117.

—, Oct. 10.—A parchment or paper book to be provided wherein shall be noted the principal points of the charters and compositions, to be entered in English, and also a terrier of all the lands belonging to the common chamber. f. 115.

1579, Oct. 10.—Order that every householder, gentlemen excepted, attend upon the Mayor every Sunday to the sermon. f. 115.

1580, Jan. 11.—Twenty shillings granted to William Storr, a scholar at Oxford, towards the buying of books and for the furtherance of learning. f. 116. On March 24, 1582, he has a further grant of 40s. towards the buying of apparel and books, and 20s. yearly towards his maintenance being a poor scholar. (fn. 2) f. 128. See further under under Oct. 30, 1587.

—, May 7.—John Hyrd, clerk, now vicar of St. Mary's, to be usher of the free school. f. 117b.

—, —. The reversion of the Town Clerkship granted to Leonard Carr. Ibid.

—, Aug. 27.—The Dean and Chapter to be asked whether they be content to join the two schools together. f. 118b.

—, Sept.—A great hoop or ring of gold which had been delivered by Henry Sapcote, esq. to the outgoing mayor, Martin Mayson, now delivered by him to his successor. f. 120.

—, Nov. 5.—Ten shillings given to Francis Emerson for that he was attendant the last summer at this city for training of soldiers. f. 121b.

1581.—Act of Parliament, 23 Eliz. "for wools, for relief of this city of Lincoln, . . . . . . come to great necessity, impoverishment, ruin and decay." f. 125b.

1582, Jan. 13.—Freemen who wear gentlemen's liveries to be disfranchised. f. 127b.

A house at Stonebow to be assigned to the Town Clerk to dwell in. Ibid.

The usher's stipend raised from 4l. 10s. to 6l. Ibid.

—, July 21.—Heselwood the painter to make an end of painting the Hall, and to set up the Queen's arms and all the noblemen the earls arms in metal, and, if he desire it, to have his freedom and 20s., or if not, then to be recompensed for his pains. f. 129.

—, Sept. 1.—Provision ordered of leather buckets and of hooks, the city having been heretofore divers times in great peril of fire. Ibid.

—, Dec. 22.—Order for conference with the Dean and Chapter upon certain articles proposed for the union of the schools. f. 132.

1583, Aug. 12.—Twenty marks lent to Mr. Temple, the schoolmaster, for three years. f. 134b.

Five marks given to the vicar of Hemswell for the building of a new house to be joined to the old vicarage house. Ibid.

—, Dec. 22.—Articles for the union of the schools to be drawn up by learned counsel of both parties. f. 137.

—, —. A virtuous and learned preacher to be provided as shortly as may be, to teach the inhabitants the word of God, and to visit and give good counsel to the sick as need shall serve; to have for his stipend 20l., and to be appointed by the Mayor, Recorder, aldermen and sheriffs. f. 137b.

1583, Dec. 22.—All orders, &c. made at any Common Council to be drawn in paper and read openly at the next Council before they be entered, that if anything be mistaken it may be reformed before it be entered in the Council book. f. 137b.

1584, Jan. 18.—The indentures of agreement about the schools to be sealed. f. 138.

—, Feb. 26.—A house of easement to be made at the Friars for the scholars. f. 140.

—, —. Three shillings and fourpence allowed monthly for the bringing up of a bastard child whose father and mother are dead. Ibid.

—, —. A legacy of 40l. from John Wilson for the poor. Ibid.

—, Apr. 4.—Mayors no longer to be charged with the venison feast, which is from henceforth to be laid down, and the rent-fish given by the fishers to be had by the mayors towards their housekeeping. f. 140b.

—, —. Mr. Jermyns to be occupied in preaching upon Sunday afternoons and upon Wednesdays in the forenoon, to teach the people their duties towards God and the Queen's Majesty, and to have yearly 20l. Ibid.

—, —. Ordered that one half of all the people in every house above 12 years of age, being not sick or lawfully hindered, be at the beginning of every sermon every Sunday in the morning, and one from every house at the beginning of every sermon in the afternoon of every Sunday and festival day, and likewise on every Wednesday, upon pain of 20d. on Sundays and 12d. on other days. f. 141.

—, —. All tradesmen to have their shop doors and windows closed all the day-time on Sundays, except they have need to open their shop doors for their own passage in and out of their houses, upon pain of 3s. 4d.; and except that it shall be lawful for every butcher upon any Sunday out of Lent, and every fishmonger on every Sunday in Lent from 5 o'cl. a.m. until the market bell ring, and from 1 to 3 if there be no sermon at that time, to keep open his shop-doors to sell victual, but at no other time in the day except to innholders upon strangers' sudden coming; and except also that any mercer, draper, or other artificer may serve any stranger passing through the city as a stranger with any wares. Ibid.

—, June 18.—Alderman Hodshone to be disfranchised if within a month he do not so alter the course of his sinkers that no filth of his swine and other corruption shall come into the river or common stream. f. 142. Similar order with regard to a dyer, and others. Ibid.

—, July 30.—Further order to Ald. Hodshone, beer-brewer, with regard to the filth of his brewing as well as of his swine, and also to the dyer. f. 142b.

—, Aug. 3.—A lease granted of St. Laurence's church and steeple. f. 143.

The freedom of the city granted at the request of Lord Willoughby of Parham, to secure his good-will, to Robert Perkins, his servant or tailor. Ibid.

—, —. Mr. Jermyns continued as preacher of the city. Ibid.

1585, Jan. 16.—No present above the value of 20s. to be given to any nobleman or man of worship except by consent of the mayor and majority of aldermen, nor under that value to any one except the mayor and four of his brethren consent. f. 147.

1585, April 17.—The order about Ald. Hodshone's sinkers made on Aug. 3 (July 30 ? no order entered on the former day) to be clearly void being "partly mistaken." f. 148b.

—, Oct. 23.—Copy of a severe letter from the Privy Council dated at Richmond, Oct. 18. "Whereas after your first contempt made in the election of your mayor, (fn. 3) contrary to the direction of our letters written unto you, and the good advice given you by the Lord Bishop of Lincoln to make choice of a man able in discretion to govern that city and well affected in religion, you have sithens added to the first a second contempt savouring of more wilfulness, in electing to the places of justices of the peace within the said city for this year the four persons that were the chief ringleaders in the disorder of the choice of the mayor, and were here by hus (sic) (fn. 4) to your knowledge punished for the same, whereat we do not a little marvel," two of them, Dawson and Emonson, who are held to be specially unfit, are hereby sequestered from those places, and order given to elect two others. This order is consequently obeyed. f. 152.

—, Dec. 11.—A frieze coat of the value of 4s. allowed yearly to "lame Robyns." f. 153.

1586, Jan. 15.—Mr, Jermyns the preacher having left the city, his stipend is granted to the Dean of the Cathedral Church, so long as it shall please his worship to take pains therein. f. 153b.

—, —. Forty shillings bestowed upon the poor people of the city for a charitable benevolence. Ibid.

—, April 18.—Certain persons to be sent up to the Privy Council to answer interrogatories concerning the supplication lately delivered by the Common Council against Mr. Rushworth. f. 154b.

—, May 9.—The Archbishop of Canterbury to have the nomination of a preacher for the city. f. 155.

—, —. Thomas Yates, a scholar a Cambridge, to have 40s. yearly for three years towards his maintenance at learning. Ibid.

—, May 30.—The house next to the prison called the Kitchens to be made a prison for apprentices and persons committing small offences. f. 155b.

—, —. Articles exhibited against two newly-elected aldermen, Laythorpe and Dobson. Laythorpe was illegally elected; is of an incontinent life and hath been fined in penance and hath not paid, "a great disworship to the city to have such an alderman"; he has unjustly caused suits about the cattle on the commons, &c.; he is officer to the sheriffs of the shire and clerk of the county, and there fully occupied; he is at this day impeached of forgery in the Star Chamber. Dobson hath left the city, and hath said that he is not of ability to keep house there. Both are in consequence displaced from the aldermanship. ff. 155b, 156.

—, Sept. 14.—At the election of mayor two letters from the Privy Council were read respecting the displacing of the aforesaid aldermen, with regard to which "gentlemen" were appointed to come for enquiry and also for appeasing contentions in the city, and requiring that Laythorpe and Dobson should be allowed to be in the calendar for election of mayor; but the mayor and three others refused to allow it, as being not aldermen at that time, whereupon five others refused to take part in the eloction. f. 157b.

1586, Oct. 5.—The grant of the reversion of the town-clerkship to Leonard Carr, made May 7, 1580, repealed, because he has maintained a faction in the city, and taken part in a slanderous bill supplicatory to the Privy Council against Henry Blowe, late mayor. f. 159b. (See under 1589.)

Richard Parkyns appointed clerk, in the place of Mr. Bunche, deceased. Ibid.

—, Oct. 11.—A letter sent to the Lord Chancellor informing him that before his letter came in favour of L. Carr, the place had been given to another. f. 160.

—, Nov. 2, 3.—Thomas Winterburne deprived (but not unanimously) of his places of justice of peace (to which he had been appointed against his own will) and alderman, for tearing in pieces, in great fury and madness, some examinations which he had signed. f. 160a, b. [It is possible that Winterburne was a Roman Catholic, as he had at first "most wilfully and stubbornly" refused to take the oaths incident to the office of a justice.]

—, Dec. 31.—Not more than one couple to be henceforth taken into any house by the inhabitants of the city, and no persons to be admitted to dwell in the city but such as the mayor and the most of his brethren shall allow. f. 161b.

—, —. The constables to report every fortnight what foreigners or strangers have come to inhabit. Ibid.

1587, March 3.—Thomas Emonson disfranchised for spoil and waste by cutting down trees on land leased to him. f. 164. Proceedings against others. f. 165. Emonson to be restored on paying a fine. f. 171b.

—, May 20.—Appointment of persons to visit all the several divisions of the city, it having been in the last summer visited with the sickness of the plague very grievously, and there being now some great and manifest presumptions of some dregs and offscourings thereof yet remaining. f. 165b.

—, Sept. 12.—Mr. Silvester, curate of St. Bennet's, appointed vicar of Belton, with a stipend of 16l f. 167b.

The inventory of plate handed on to the incoming mayor is increased this year by a case of knives and a staff of "brasell" tipped with silver. This mahogany staff is not mentioned in subsequent inventories, but is still preserved amongst the civic insignia. It measures 28½ inches. f. 170.

—, Oct. 30.—Thomas Kendall disfranchised for certain lewd speeches against the Bishop and Dean. f. 170b.

"He said it was never a good world since the spirituality must have the choosing of the mayor . . . . The Bishop hath nothing to do with the choosing, and that if either he or the Dean did come into the hall they were as good not, and if that they were cast out of the hall window they know the worst of it . . . . that it was a shame for Mr. Dean to deal as he did . . . . . at his first coming he preached upon good will and for nothing, and now he selleth his sermons," etc.

1587, Oct. 30.—5l. allowed to William Storr, a scholar at Oxford, towards his proceeding bachelor [master: see note under 1580] next Lent, in consideration that he do not hereafter challenge any more exhibition of the city. f. 171.

1588, March 21.—Copy of a letter from Sir Francis Walsingham, dated from the Court, Jan. 1, desiring that Laythorpe's name may be subjected to the city for re-election as an alderman, on the grounds of his wisdom and understanding in the affairs of the world (being a most fit man for those good parts it hath pleased God to endow him withal for the government of the city), that the manner of proceeding against him was hard, and the matters objected most weakly and slenderly proved; but if he be not re-elected, then he should surcease from seeking further restitution. An election for two aldermen is now held, and 24 and 19 voices are given for Will. Gosse and John Becke against 5 given for Christopher Laythorpe and John Rodthorne. f. 172a, b.

—, July 9.—Stones given out of the Friers to two persons. f. 173b, and again, f. 186.

—, —. Leonard Carr admitted to the office of Town-clerk, in accordance with a letter from Lord Chancellor Christopher Hatton, dated at London, March 11, stating that he ought to enjoy the office according to the grant formerly made, there having been no just cause for its revocation, and that he is found to be honest and of good behaviour, and very willing to perform his best service with that duty that shall become him. f. 174.

Carr is also admitted clerk of the staple in accordance with a writ from the Queen, in which it is said that Parkins is not qualified for the office because he has not lands or tenements in the city. Ibid.

—, July 29.—The seal of the statutes merchant to be cut, according to Act of Parliament. f. 174.

—, Aug. 10.—The Friars never to be let for a term of years. f. 175b.

—, Sept. 23.—Extract from the indenture of Sir Thomas White's benefaction to the city, dated July 1, 1566, with an election of four persons to receive loans of 25l. each, in accordance with the same. ff. 176b–178.

—, —. Mr. Sele, M.A. (fn. 5) to have the curacy of Belton, in pursuance of letters from the Bishop of Lincoln showing that for his learning and godly policy in governing he is a sufficient and meet man, of which sufficiency the Bishop can better judge than this house can. f. 178b.

—, —. Robert Cooke, blacksmith, to pull down two chimneys of mud which he hath built in a thatched barn, to the harbouring of many beggars and danger of fire, or else to be distranchised. Ibid.

In the mayor's inventory of plate this year the three cups become "five silver tuns," and "a pair of wood knives to take up a table withal" is added, the other knives being "to cut meat." f. 180. This description is repeated in subsequent years.

—, Oct. 5. The Bishop to be applied to, to confirm the union of the two schools. f. 180b.

1588, Oct. 5.—The reversion of the Recordership (on death or departure of Mr. Anton) granted to Mr. William Ellis on the application of L. Chanc. Hatton, and "for avoiding of many displeasures" that might arise should the office become suddenly void; with a copy of a letter of thanks thereupon from Hatton, dated from London, 26 Nov. f. 180b.

—, Dec. 12.—If the Dean and Chapter will give Mr. Plumtre, the usher of the School 3l. 6s. 8d. yearly for life, this house will give him 5l. yearly and the benefit of a freeman, and so he be discharged from teaching any longer, because he is old and doth no good upon the children. f. 182.

—, —. The fairest great free-stones in the Friars to be piled and laid up in the vaults under the school. Ibid.

—, —. A thousand "kidds" (faggots) to be bought for the poor this Christmas according to the true meaning of Mr. John Wilson's gift. Ibid.

—, —. The blind boy of Townend to have a coat given him. Ibid.

—, —. Freemen who allow dogs to go unmuzzled to be disfranchised if they refuse to pay the fine. f. 182b.

1589, Feb. 6.—The Monks' Leas to be walled if sufficient stone can be digged there for the purpose. f. 183.

—, Oct. 20. Every householder in Bar-gate, Bail-gate, East-gate and Newport (impotent and labourers only excepted) every night when the moon shineth not between All Hallows day and Candlemas, from 6 to 9 at night to set over their doors or windows a lantern with a candlelight in it, on pain of 4d. f. 190.

1590, Jan. 19.—At the suit of the waits it is ordered that no musicians except the waits do hereafter play at any marriages, unless such musicians give to the waits 2s. for every marriage they play at. f. 191b.

—, Feb. 16. Whereas Mr. Barnes, our preacher that is to be, is offered 40l. stipend and his diet at the mayor's table, but desires also to have his meat and drink in his chamber for himself and his man, a convenient lodging, and the bringing hither of his books and implements, all at the city's charge, which things this house cannot well condescend unto because of the great charge it is at every year, yet because of the great desire the citizens have of his coming through the report of his great learning and his fitness otherwise, it is agreed he shall have 40l., a chamber, and the fetching of his books and implements, with his meat at the mayor's table until the common chamber is better able to contribute to the charge of his diet. f. 192.

—, May 22.—Mr. Walwoodde elected usher. f. 193b.

—, Sept. 5.—Mr. Walkwoodde (sic) to have a gown-cloth only this year, in consideration of the stipend given to the late usher. f. 194b.

—, —. No serving-man or retainer to any one to be elected to any office in the city. f. 195.

—, —. No freeman under the degree of sheriff shall procure, work for, or entreat any man to give his voice to any to be elected to any office. f. 195b.

In the inventory this year the knives to cut meat are omitted, and a basket to carry the plate and a carpet to lay on a form in the Minster where the Mayor and his brethren sit are added. f. 197b. This list is continued afterwards.

1591, July 31.—A committee appointed to confer with Mr. Grene of Boston, who has offered to set 400 poor people of Lincoln on work for five years at wool, if the city will find him a convenient house and lend him 300l. freely for the five years. f. 200.

—, —. Mr. Barnes elected preacher with a stipend of 20l. (sic). f. 201.

1592, Sept. 5.—The best learned counsel in the law that can be gotten in London to be consulted, with Mr. Recorder, about the statute merchant seal, for confirming or reforming it, or purchasing a new grant. f. 207.

1593, Feb. 5.—Charles Dymock made a freeman at the request of his nephew Sir Edward Dymock, knt., with a view to his election as one of the burgesses of the city, he having always showed himself very courteous to the citizens, and promising to attempt in Parliament anything that may be beneficial to this corporation, and, further, that he will not put the city to any charge for burgess-money. f. 211.

—, March 29.—Mr. Tonge, the late mayor, "disjusticied and also disaldred" for refusing to bring in his accounts, and for having gone away with sums of money remaining in his hands. f. 212. To be sued, f. 217.

—, Sept. 22.—40l. left for the poor of St. Peter's parish in Eastgate by Lady Rooper. f. 214b.

—, —. The old brazen weights to be sold, being not according to the standard and doing no good. Ibid.

1594, Apr. 20.—A list of all the inhabitants in the towns of Waddington, Bramstou, Canwick, with their assessment (or "bustage") for taxes. ff. 219b, 20b.

—, July 26.—A table of "wyned" wood to be made and set up at the Guildhall, with the laws that are made, that the freemen may know what they are bound to. f. 221b.

1595, Jan. 17.—A "wyned" table to be made, with a green carpet of seven quarters broad-cloth, to stand before the mayor at sermon times in the body of the Minster, to lay the sword, hat, and mace upon (and a velvet cushion, f. 236b); and also a new hat to be made for the swordbearer of crimson velvet, with the band and tassels and other furniture thereunto belonging. f. 226.

—, —. A new mace to be made, greater and fairer than the mace that now is, and the sum of 39l. 14s. 4d. and the old mace to be allowed towards it; the new mace of silver gilt weighing 78½ ounces cometh at 10s. 2d. an ounce to 39l. 15s., the graving of four arms in four "ammell" [enamel ?] plates to 40s., a case for it 15s., the carrier for bringing it down 5s.; summa, 42l. 5s.; received for the silver of the old mace being 10 ounces, three-quarters and a half at 4s. 8d., 50s. 6d. So there remains due to the goldsmith, 39l. 14s. 4d. f. 226b.

—, —. The two greatest and least swords to be repaired in scabbards, hilts, "pumbles" (pommels), handles and "cheapes." Ibid.

1595, Jan. 17.—A new stall of "wyned" wainscot to be set up in St. Peter's church for the mayor and aldermen. f. 226b.

—, —. Edmund Shuttleworth to be town-clerk on the death of Leonard Carr. f. 227.

1597, Feb. 12.—The mayor's charges for a scaffold at the horse race to be allowed. f. 237b.

—, June 16.—Mr. Thomas Luddington, (fn. 6) the preacher to the city, to have 30l. per an., and his diet at the mayor's table. f. 239.

—, Sept. 7.—The burgesses for the city to be treated with to get the letters patent granted with the new seal for statutes merchant confirmed by Act of Parliament. f. 240b.

1598, Feb. 16.—St. John's churchyard and steeple to be sold. f. 243b.

—, Sept. 2.—The corn market to be kept in St. John's churchyard. f. 245b.

—, —. The Friars, notwithstanding a former order to the contrary, leased for 21 years. f. 246.

—, Nov. 23.—No clothes to be washed at the conduits. f. 249b.


  • 1. His books appear still to remain, although in very tattered and disordered condition, in the library of the Free Grammar School. For there are some (partly medical) which belonged to John Herd, M.D., prebendary of Lincoln, the historical writer, who died in 1588; and as he lived at Lincoln, and the person mentioned above had ceased to be usher some time before 1588, it may be concluded that the two are identical. I examined the collection at the request of the governors of the school, and found amongst the divinity some rare Roman Catholic controversial treatises, printed abroad, and also met with fragments of an early black-letter Robin Hood ballad, used as binder's fly-leaves in one small volume.
  • 2. He matriculated at Corpus Christi College 28 Nov. 1581 (A. Clark's Register of the Univ. of Oxf., Vol. II., Part II., 1887, p. 112), B.A., 9 July 1584; M.A., 23 May 1588. (Ib. Part III., p. 124.)
  • 3. Henry Blowe had been elected mayor by 108 voices to 79, 38, and 27 given for others.
  • 4. This spelling is universally used by the Town Clerk at the time.
  • 5. Probably John Seele, of Magd. Hall, Oxf., M.A., in 1578.
  • 6. Thomas Lodington, M.A., afterwards B.D., a Lincolnshire man, and Fellow of Lincoln College, Oxford, from 1582 to 1605 (Andr. Clark, Reg. of Univ. of Oxf., Vol. II., Part III., p. 106).