282 Haslewood v Kettle

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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'282 Haslewood v Kettle', in The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, (, ) pp. . British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/282-haslewood-kettle [accessed 4 March 2024]

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Thomas Haslewood of Belton, co. Rutland, esq v John Kettle of the city of Norwich, basket maker

December 1637 - February 1638


Haslewood complained that when he demanded a ten shilling piece from Kettle, he gave him the lie and called him 'a base shufflinge fellowe', between October and December 1635 at the White Hart Inn in St Botolph's, Bishopsgate, London. Kettle maintained that some of Haslewood's witnesses were indebted to Kettle and that they were attempting to use this case to threaten him into discharging them from those debts. Kettle also claimed that he had drunk with Haslewood since the occasion mentioned in the libel and they had settled their differences. Haselwood entered bond to prosecute the case on 2 December 1637 and Edmund Haselwood, Edward Murrey and William Tonge appeared as witnesses in his support in February 1638. Although the sentence survives, the document is too badly damaged to reveal the verdict.

Initial proceedings

3/41, Plaintiff's bond

2 December 1637

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

Signed by Thomas Haslewood.

Sealed, subscribed and delivered in the presence of John Watson.

13/1b, Libel

Kettle was a plebeian and no gentleman, but a basketmaker.

Between October and December 1635 in St Botolph's, Bishopsgate, London, at the White Hart Inn, Kettle gave Haselwood the lie and called him 'a base shufflinge fellowe'.

No date.

Signed by Clere Talbot

3/42, Note of evidence

'Memorandum: that Edward Murryn can testifie and wilbe sworne that John Kettle of Norwich, basketmaker, did saie unto Thomas Haslewood of Belton in the countie of Rutland, esq, that he was a base shuffling fellow, and that he did lye, which was about a tenn shillinge peece then in difference. In witness wherof I have hereunto sett my hand.'

Edmund HaslewoodEdward Murrin.

Anno dm 1635 1636 at the White Hart in Bishopsgate London.

Gentle servt to the King and Queen; under the lord of Dorsett's hand and seale; gent of Haslewood in Haselwood in Yorkshire.

That Mr Haslewood charging him with the peece, he said these words'.

Plaintiff's case

14/1d, Defence interrogatories

1. The witnesses were warned of the penalty for perjury and bearing false witness. What was the witnesses' age, occupation and condition of living? Where had they lived during the last seven years?

2. Was the witness a relative or retainer of Haslewood's and to whom would they give the victory if it were within their power?

3. Were any of the witnesses indebted or engaged to Kettle? If so for how much, and for how long?Had Kettle 'sued and obteyned one or more judgment or judgments against you or any of you'?

4. Did you threaten Kettle 'before this suite began that if he would not discharge you of your debt that you would make him spend £500 in this court with a tricke that you had'?

5. 'Have you set this cause on foote, sollicited, payd or disbursed any mony or monyes about the same'?

6. 'By whose procurement or by what warrant doe you come to be examined as a witness in this cause'?

7. Were you present with Haslewood and Kettle? If yes, where, when and how often and who else was in company with them?

8. Exactly when 'did you last see Kettle in the city or suburbs of London'?

9. 'What some or somes of mony did Kettle lend to you or any other to your knowledge when you were last in John Kettle's company in London; and at what taverne, inn or alehouse were you present and in company with Haslewood and John Kettle together'? 'Did you seale any bond or bonds or were you witness to any bond or bonds sealed to Kettle's use'? If yes 'by whom and in what somes were the bonds sealed and witnessed'?

10. If any witness testified to the scandalous words in the libel, they were to detail exactly where and when the words were spoken and what other conference or communication passed between Kettle and Haselwood immediately before and after the pretended words. What 'quantity of ales, beere and wyne was then and there drank, and who were present in company at that time with Haslewood and Kettle, besides yourself'?

11. Did Haslewood and Kettle 'since the time of the pretended speaking or uttering of the words in the libel the next day following, or any time afterwards, in London or elsewhere, meet and converse together, and dranke each unto or with the other and pledged one the other, to your knowledge yea or noe'?

No date.

Signed by William Lewin.

Sentence / Arbitration

12/2o, Plaintiff's sentence

Too badly damaged to pick up text and no sign of verdict

Summary of proceedings

Dr Talbot acted as counsel for Haselwood and Dr Lewin for Kettle. Kettle was summoned to appear on 27 January 1638, while on 3 February Dr Talbot produced in support of the libel the witnesses Edmund Haselwood, Edward Murrey and William Tonge. Dr Lewin presented the material for the defence later in February 1638.


Thomas Haselwood of Belton was the son of Francis Haselwood of Belton and the daughter of Mr Darell of co. Buckingham. Thomas married a daughter of Mr Butler.

G. J. Armytage (ed.), The Visitation of the County of Rutland in the year 1618-19 (Publications of the Harleian Society, 3, 1870), p. 44.

John Kettle, basket maker, became a freeman of the city of Norwich on 11 August 1609. He was stripped of this freedom in 1618 for disobeying orders of the mayor's court. He became a vocal critic of the city's government and in 1627 the poorer citizens advanced him as a candidate for the shrievalty of Norwich. After a brief imprisonment in the Fleet, in London, in October 1627 Kettle was fined £40, ordered to make a humble, public submission to Norwich's aldermen and to promise that in future he would obey the city government. He made his submission only reluctantly and not without insolence. In 1636 he again criticized the city's aldermen for embezzling taxes from the citizens.

P. Millican (ed.), The Register of the Freemen of Norwich, 1548-1713 (Norwich, 1934), p. 14; J. T. Evans, Seventeenth-Century Norwich: Politics, Religion, and Government, 1620-1690 (Oxford, 1979), pp. 73-6.


  • Initial proceedings
    • Plaintiff's bond: 3/41 (2 Dec 1637)
    • Libel: 13/1b (no date)
    • Note of evidence: 3/42 (no date)
  • Plaintiff's case
    • Defence interrogatories: 14/1d (no date)
  • Sentence / Arbitration
    • Plaintiff sentence 12/2o (no date)
  • Proceedings
    • Proceedings before Maltravers: 1/5, fos. 1-15 (27 Jan 1638)
    • Proceedings before Arundel: 1/5, fos. 23-35 (3 Feb 1638)
    • Proceedings before Arundel: 1/5, fos. 38-56 (12 Feb 1638)
    • Proceedings before Marten: 1/5 (21 Feb 1638)

People mentioned in the case

  • Butler, Mr
  • Darell, Mr
  • Haslewood, Edmund (also Haselwood)
  • Haslewood, Francis (also Haselwood)
  • Haslewood, Thomas, esq (also Haselwood)
  • Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
  • Howard, Thomas, earl of Arundel and Surrey
  • Kettle, John, basket maker
  • Lewin, William, lawyer
  • Marten, Henry, knight
  • Murrey, Edward (also Murrin)
  • Sackville, Edward, earl of Dorset
  • Talbot, Clere, lawyer
  • Tongue, William
  • Watson, John

Places mentioned in the case

  • London
    • Bishopsgate
    • The Fleet
    • St Botolph's
  • Middlesex
    • Westminster
  • Norwich
  • Rutland
    • Belton
  • Yorkshire, West Riding
    • Haslewood

Topics of the case

  • debt
  • denial of gentility
  • giving the lie
  • royal servant