130 Corbet v Cooper

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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William Corbett of Wem, co. Salop, gent v James Cooper of the same, shoemaker

December 1637 - February 1638


Corbet complained that he had been provoked to a duel by Cooper who had called him a base gentleman, given him the lie, and said he was as good a man as Corbet. Process was granted on 15 December 1637 and Cooper was summoned to appear in February 1638; but no further proceedings survive.

Initial proceedings

3/75, Petition to Arundel

'Your petitioner is a gentleman descended of an ancient familie. James Cooper of the parish of Wem, shoemaker, did, in November last in Wem, use many disgracefull speeches against your petitioner, and said that your petitioner was a base gentleman and gave him the lye, and said he was as good a man as your petitioner and gave him the lye severall times, thereby provoking your said petitioner to a combate with him.'

Petitioned that Cooper be brought to answer.

Duck desired Dethick to grant process, 15 December 1637.

Signed by Arthur Duck.

3/76, Plaintiff's bond

15 December 1637

Bound to appear 'in the Court in the painted Chamber within the Pallace of Westminster'.

Signed by W. Corbett.

Sealed, subscribed and delivered in the presence of Humphrey Terrick.

Summary of proceedings

Dr Duck acted as counsel. Cooper was summoned to appear in court before the earl of Arundel and Lord Maltravers on 3 and 12 February 1638.


No William Corbett of Alstone or Wem appears in the 1623 visitation, although a William Corbett does appear as the fourth son of David Corbett and Katherine, daughter of Henry Herle.

G. Grazebrook and J. P. Rylands (eds.), The Visitation of Shropshire taken in the year 1623, vol. I (Publications of the Harleian Society, 28, 1889), p. 143.


  • Initial proceedings
    • Petition to Arundel: 3/75 (15 Dec 1637)
    • Plaintiff's bond: 3/76 (15 Dec 1637)
  • Proceedings

People mentioned in the case

  • Cooper, James, shoemaker
  • Corbett, David
  • Corbett, Katherine
  • Corbett, William, gent (also Corbet)
  • Dethick, Gilbert, registrar
  • Duck, Arthur, lawyer
  • Herle, Henry
  • Herle, Katherine
  • Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
  • Howard, Thomas, earl of Arundel and Surrey
  • Terrick, Humphrey

Places mentioned in the case

  • Salop / Shropshire
    • Alstone
    • Wem

Topics of the case

  • comparison
  • denial of gentility
  • giving the lie
  • provocative of a duel