238 Garnett v Aylmer

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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'238 Garnett v Aylmer', in The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, (, ) pp. . British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/238-garnett-aylmer [accessed 5 March 2024]

In this section


Jasper Garnett of Much Hadham, co. Hertford, esq v Edmund and Samuel Aylmer of the same, gents, and Theophilus Aylmer of Wicken Bonhunt, co. Essex, clerk

No date


Garnett petitioned that the Earl Marshal summon the Aylmers for their contempt of the king's edict and proclamation against duels. Edmund had issued a challenge written by his nephew, Theophilus, a minister, to Jasper's son, Henry Garnett, to fight a duel at the George at Buntingford, Hertfordshire. Edmund's other nephew, Samuel, delivered the challenge and demanded the length of Garnett's intended weapon. Garnett commanded his son to forbear and remonstrated in vain with Edmund Aylmer's brother, Dr Aylmer, to end the quarrel. Garnett further complained that Edmund Aylmer subsequently assaulted Henry and would have killed him had he not been rescued. No further proceedings survive.

Initial proceedings

EM296, Petition

'Humbly shewing that in September last one Edmond Aylmer, conceaving causeless displeasure against Henry Garnett your petitioner's son, and pretending a quarrel for nothing, sent your petitioner's sonne a challenge under his hand in writing in theis words. vizt. Harry Garnett, though yesternight's disadvantage lies yet on you to answere, yet the doubt I have of your valor makes me forward to putt you in mynde of it, I neede not use such faire terms to so foule a mouth; but in playne terms if you will meet me or dare on Wednesday next att 9 of the clock att the George att Buntingford, yourself alone, or your second if you think good, send me I desire you by this bearer your answer for place and weapon. Yours Edm. Aylmer, which challenge was written by one Theophilus Aylmer, a minister, and by him and Edmund sent unto your petitioner's son on a Sundaie morninge by one Samuell Aylmer, who upon the delivery demanded the length of the weapon.

Your petitioner being desirous to prevent mischiefe, not only commanded his son to forbeare to answere the challenge, but also repaired to Doctor Aylmer, brother to the challenger, and father to the writer and bringer of the challenge, and acquainted him therewith, desiring him to settle a peaceable mind in his brother and sons, that no peril might insue upon this quarrel; but he tooke no course therein, so as, with in fewe daies after, Edmund Aylmer, taking your petitioner's son at disadvantage, violently assaulted him, and (had he not bin rescued) had there killed him.

Forasmuch as your petitioner much doubteth what maie be the issue of this quarrel and challenge, and feareth that the Aylmers intende to mischiefe your petitioner's son. And for that this challenge is contrary to his Majestie's proclamacon against duells,'

petitioned that Edmund, Theophilus and Samuel Aylmer be summoned to answer for 'their notorious contempt against his Majestie's royall Edict'.

No date.

No signatures.


Mary, daughter of Jasper Garnett of Much Hadham married Edward Hide, also of Much Hadham. Samuel and Theophilus Aylmer were among the seven sons of John Aylmer, bishop of London (d. 1594) and Judith (d.1618), daughter of Robert King of Audley End, co. Essex. Theophilus Aylmer was presented to the rectory of Wicken Bonhunt, co. Essex, on 13 July 1627 and was described as an archdeacon in the Visitation of Hertfordshire of 1634.

W. C. Metcalfe (ed.), The Visitation of Hertfordshire, 1572 and 1634 (Publications of the Harleian Society, 22, 1886), pp. 65, 141; J. Broadway, R. P. Cust and S. K. Roberts (eds.), A Calendar of the Docquets of Lord Keeper Coventry (List and Index Society, special series, vol. 34, 2004), part 1, p. 96.


  • Initial proceedings
    • Petition: EM296 (no date)

People mentioned in the case

  • Aylmer, Dr (also Elmer)
  • Aylmer, Edmund, gent (also Elmer)
  • Aylmer, John, bishop of London (also Elmer)
  • Aylmer, Judith (also Elmer)
  • Aylmer, Samuel, gent (also Elmer)
  • Aylmer, Theophilus, clerk (also Elmer)
  • Garnett, Henry, gent
  • Garnett, Jasper, esq
  • Hide, Edward
  • Hide, Mary
  • King, Judith
  • King, Robert
  • Stuart, Charles I, king

Places mentioned in the case

  • Essex
    • Audley End
    • Wicken Bonhunt
  • Hertfordshire
    • Buntingford
    • Much Hadham

Topics of the case

  • assault
  • challenge to a duel