422 Meyricke v Catchmaye

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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422 MEYRICKE V CATCHMAYE

Rowland Meyricke of Pembroke, co. Pembroke, gent v George Catchmaye of the same

November 1635 - January 1638

Figure 422:

Pembroke in 1610. George Catchmaye, mayor of the town quarreled with Rowland Meyricke at Alice Webb's inn and outside the jail in 1635 (From, John Speed, Theatre of the Empire of Great Britain (1611))

Abstract

Meyricke complained that in March 1635 Catchmaye gave him the lie at the inn of Alice Webb in Pembroke, saying 'I was a base rogue, and that himselfe was as good a gentleman as any in Wales'. Catchmaye had addressed Meyricke as 'Thou rogue' in December 1634 at Richard Gwilliam's house in Pembroke, and vowed that he would spend £200 to eject Meyricke from his office of customer of the port of Milford. The two also clashed outside Pembroke gaol on 23 May 1635 when Catchmaye called him 'Sirra' and boasted that he 'was a better man then anie man in this shire, meaninge within the shire of Pembroke'. Catchmaye, who was serving as mayor of Pembroke over this period, maintained that he had been provoked and assaulted by Meyricke, his brother John, and his servant Rees ap Rees. They took him by the beard, tore the band around his neck, and struck his head with a cudgel seven or eight times, calling him 'Base mayor', and asked scornfully the next day 'How doth your mayor's pate?' The three had also affronted him in church at Pembroke, when they sat above his mayoral seat, jostled him and 'made wry mouths att him'. John Meyricke was identified by witnesses as the man mainly responsible for these affronts and the quarrel in church occurred when Catchmaye produced a warrant to arrest him. However, Rowland Meyricke also taunted him by saying, 'I will make thee mayor these 7 yeares and will make thee spend more than thou art worth.'

Meyricke's libel was presented in November 1635 and his witnesses were examined by a commission headed by John Meyricke and Charles Bowen, esqs, on the 18 January 1636, at Alice Webb, alias Roberts', inn. They included several local gentry and the current mayor, and their testimony confirmed that Meyricke's father had been customer before him and his grandfather had been Bishop of Bangor. Catchmaye's witnesses were examined by a commission headed by John Laugharne, esq, on 27 September 1636 in the town hall of Pembroke. His status was more uncertain. He and his father, Richard, had both been mayors of Pembroke, but they were innkeepers by trade, and Richard, who was reputed to be illegitimate, had served as a liveried retainer to Mr Barlow of Slebech some forty years earlier. Local opinion was divided on whether they were to be regarded as gentlemen. Meyricke won the case and Catchmaye was sentenced to pay fines of up to £80 on 16 February 1637, although no details of his submission survive.

Initial proceedings

Acta (5), fo. 142, Libel

Meyricke's family had been gentlemen for up to 200 years.

George Catchmaye gave Meyricke the lie in Pembroke town, and 'sayd I was a base rogue, and that himselfe was as good a gentleman as any in Wales', thereby provoking Meyricke to a duel.

Dated 11 November 1635.

Signed by Arthur Duck.

Plaintiff's case

Acta (5), fo. 143, Letters commissory for the plaintiff

Addressed to commissioners John Meyricke, esq, Charles Bowen, esq, Thomas Adams, gent, David Adams, gent, and also, John Lahorne, esq, Hugh Owen, esq, Hugh Bowen, esq and Maurice Wogan, esq, to meet in a cause of scandalous words provocative of a duel from 18 to 20 January 1636, in the inn of Alice Webb, alias Roberts, in the town of Pembroke.

Gilbert Dethick assigned Lawrence Belringer as notary public.

Dated 12 November 1635.

'Commission is not to be executed unless Catchmayd be present or that it appear to the commissioners aforesaid that he had lawfull warning at or before the tenth day of Januarie 1636.'

Signed by Gilbert Dethick.

7/71, Names of commissioners

12 December 1635

[Addressed on the back to] Mr Cole Tunth

Commissioners: John Meyricke, esq, Thomas Adams, gent, Roger Prichard, clerk, Lodovick Davies, gent.

'Cozen Lloyd,

I pray desire Mr Dethicke man to prepare this commission and some blanks for the names until I call'

Signed by Jo: Griffiths.

14/1i, Defence interrogatories

1. Was the witness related to Meyricke and if so in what degree? Was the witness indebted to either of the parties and if so for what sum? Was the witness a tenant or employee of either of the parties and if so for what property or wage? Was the witness a relative, servant, retainer or waged employee of either of the parties?

2. In case a witness should depose of words spoken by Catchmaye they were to be asked when and where specifically such words were spoken and in whose presence.

3. What words had Meyricke spoken on that occasion to provoke Catchmaye 'and let such witness set down all the antecedent words'.

4. Had not Catchmaye been mayor of Pembroke and when had he ceased in this office?

5. Whether during Catchmaye's mayoralty Meyricke, his family, friends or servants used 'disgraceful speeches and actions' towards Catchmaye, one of them bidding him to 'kisse his arse'?

6. Was Meyricke between last March and September bound to his 'good behaviour or to the peace or both and that for abusing George Catchmayd being mayor, or for some other cause'?

No date.

No signatures.

Acta (5), fos. 118r-131v, Plaintiff's depositions

Taken before commissioners John Meyricke, esq, Charles Bowen, esq, David Adams and Thomas Adams, gent on the 18 January 1635/6, in the inn of Alice Webb alias Roberts in Pembroke.

fos. 120r-v (Witness 1), George Ellis of Stackpole Elidor, co. Pembroke, gent, born in the parish of St Peters?, co. Pembroke, aged 55

To Meyricke's libel:

He believed Meyricke was a gentleman 'of good descent and soe comonlie reputed and taken amongst the gentry of the country; and soe was John Meyricke father ofRowland and Custemar of the Port of Milford, and a man in his life time in good repute and credit. And [he] further deposeth that he hath heard that [Rowland Meyricke's] grandfather Rowland Meyricke, whilest he lived, was Byshop of Bangor in north Wales, and sometimes one of the canons of the cathedrall church of Saint Davids'. He knew the father of 'George Catchmayd some fortie yeares or thereabouts sithence before this examinacon, and whilest he lived was an innkeeper within the towne of Pembrooke and had been maior of the towne and a man that lived in good fashion; but hath heard it objected unto the father of George, upon some differences between him and others in his life time, that he was a base fellow and baselie descended'.

To Catchmaye's interrogatories:

4. 'George Catchmayde was latelie maior of the town of Pembroke and hath heard he left to be maior in October last past before this examinacon.'

Signed by George Ellis and by commissioners John Meyricke, David Adams, Thomas Adams and Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

fos. 121r-122r (Witness 2), Henry Bealman of Llanstadwell, co. Pembroke, gent, aged about 64

To Meyricke's libel:

He heard that Meyricke's grandfather was bishop of Bangor. He knew that Meyricke's father 'whilest he lived in the towne of Pembroke was a gentleman and a good house keeper and lived in very good creditt and Custemar of the Port of Milford'. Rowland Meyricke 'is, and ever was, reputed a gentleman, and soe liniallie descended; and for such they were and are generallie accompted, reputed and taken.' About 45 years ago Catchmaye's father 'was servant in livery unto Mr John Barlowe of Slebeech' and subsequently was a Pembroke innkeeper. About December 1634 he, Meyricke and Catchmaye were with others at the house of Alice Webb, widow, in Pembroke town, when he heard Catchmaye say to Meyricke, 'Thou rogue, I have a hundred pounds to spend to putt thee out of thy office of customar; and then gave him a flect on the brim of his hat with his hand, which abuse Meyricke did putt up at that time by reason George Catchmayd was then maior of the towne of Pembroke.'

To Catchmaye's interrogatories:

2. The words above were spoken in an inner room, within the kitchen, in the house of Alice Webb, widow, in Pembroke town in December 1634.

4. 'George Catchmayd was latelie maior of Pembroke and left his place of maioraltie about October last before this examinacon; and before and sithence doth sell ale and beere in the towne.'

Signed Henry Bealman, by the above four commissioners and Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

Dated 22 January 1635/6

fos. 122v-124r (Witness 3), John Poyer of St Mary's parish, Pembroke, co. Pembroke, skinner, aged about 30

To Meyricke's libel:

He had known Meyricke and his father John Meyricke for 20 years to be 'gentlemen of good discent and soe liniallie descended and for such ever respected and comonlie accompted, reputed and taken'. He had heard that Meyricke's grandfather had been bishop of Bangor. He had heard that Richard Catchmaye father of George Catchmaye was an innkeeper in Pembroke for 20 years 'and soe lived and died; and hath heard it reported that he was baselie descended and borne and for such a one reputed and taken'. He deposed that on 23 May 1635 'George Catchmayd meeting Rowland Meyricke of Pembroke nere unto a gaole of the towne and haveing some dislike with Rowland as he conceived in a deriding and scornefull manner', asked Meyricke, 'Sirra, will thou goe into the gaole'? Catchmaye then told Meyricke that Catchmaye 'was a better man then any man in this shire, meaninge within the shire of Pembroke, and further said that he was a better man then anie in Walles'. When Meyricke reprimanded him for this, Catchmayd replied that Meyricke did lie. When Meyricke said Catchmaye was drunk, Catchmaye replied, 'But Sirra, thou Meyricke art more drunck then I'. Poyer thought the words 'were delivered in a provoking base opprobrious and disgracefull manner.'

To Catchmaye's interrogatories:

2. Richard Hinton, an under bailiff of Pembroke town, a William Peynon, and one Evan were also present 'with others whome he knoweth not.'

3. Meyricke had a servant in prison and tendering bail for him, Catchmaye demanded of him, 'Sirra, what doest thou looke here'? Meyricke answered, 'To give bayle for his man'. Catchmaye replied, 'Thou shall not have him forth of gaole for I knowe if the worst come to the worst 'tis but a noble a daie if he doe staie there', meaning in the prison.

4. 'Catchmayd was then maior of the towne of Pembroke when the wordes before by him deposed were spoken, and left his place of maior shortlie after Michaelmas last.'

Signed by John Poyer, by commissioners John Meyricke, David Adams, Thomas Adams, and by Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

fos. 124r-v (Witness 4), George William Griffith of Linney parish, co. Pembroke, gent, aged about 50

To Meyricke's libel:

He 'having an insight in haroldrie, hath collected and observed by reading that the progenitors and ancestors of Rowland Meyricke have been styled gent and gentlemen of coatt Armour which armes he findeth by his reading to be the three fier brands and given in colour gould . The father of George Catchmayd he hath known when a townsman in the towne of Pembroke and longe before his death kept an inn there.'

Signed by Griffith and by the above three commissioners and Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

fos. 124v-125r (Witness 5), Richard Hinton of Pembroke, co. Pembroke, clerk, aged about 50

To Meyricke's libel:

For all his remembrance he had known Meyricke and his ancestors to be gentlemen who were always reputed so, for all he 'knew to the contrarie'.He knew 'Richard Catchmayd father of George Catchmayd whilest he lived in Pembroke towne to be maior of the towne, and sold ale, and kept an inn there, and hath heard it crediblie reported by many that Richard father of George was baselie descended and illegitimate begotten.'

To Catchmaye's interrogatories:

4. As witness 3.

Signed Richard Hinton and by the above three commissioners and by Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

fos. 125v-126v (Witness 6), Richard Gwilliam, mayor of Pembroke, born in the parish of Ambleston, co. Pembroke, aged 55

To Meyricke's libel:

He heard that Meyricke's grandfather had been the Bishop of Bangor and had known Meyricke's father John Meyricke for 30 years to be a gentleman. Meyricke and his father had been customers of the port of Milford. He knew that Richard, father of George Catchmaye had been mayor of Pembroke and an innkeeper there, and that he 'was illegitimate begotten'. Around December or January 1634/5 Meyricke and Catchmaye were at his house in Pembroke when Catchmaye 'in a provokeing, deriding, vilifying and contumelious manner' said to Meyricke, 'Thou art a base fellowe and a base customer and that I will buy or putt thee out of they office of customership'.Catchmaye used other 'scandalous and opprobrious words' which he could not now remember.

To Catchmaye's interrogatories:

1. His mother and Meyricke's grandfather by his mother's side were brother and sister by one father.

2. Thomas Powell, and another of Gwilliam's family were also present one of this 'whose name he now remember not.'

4. As witness 1.

Signed by Richard Gwilliam, mayor, and by the above three commissioners and by Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

fos. 127r-128r (Witness 7), Thomas Powell of St Michael's parish, Pembroke, co. Pembroke, gent, aged about 42

To Meyricke's libel:

He knew Meyricke's father John Meyricke 'whilest he lived to be a gentleman and to be descended as he hath crediblie heard reported, of an ancient stocke'. Rowland and John Meyricke 'were ever held and taken to be gentlemen and soe ever respected and accompted of for ought he knewe to the contrarie'. He knew that Catchmaye's father 'whilest he lived was maior of the towne of Pembroke and kept an inn there; and soe doth now George Catchmayd'. He had heard that 'Richard Catchmayd was a servant in liverie unto Mr Barlowe of Sleebeech and illegitimatlie borne as he upon some differences between Richard and others hath heard it objected unto him in his life time'. Around December or January 1634/5 he was with Meyricke and Catchmaye at Richard Gwilliam's house in Pembroke when Catchmaye said, 'Thou rogue' to Meyricke 'in a deriding and contumelious manner'. Meyricke 'was much moved with anger and would have sought revenge, but Catchmayd was then a magistrate; and he used many other words of provocation to Meyricke, and then and there swore and vowed that he would putt Meyricke out of his office of customer ship and for that effect said he would spend CCli and used other base and ignominious speeches.'

To Catchmaye's interrogatories:

1. Meyricke's mother and this witness 'are brothers children.'

2-3. George Catchmayd had been mayor of Pembroke and left this office about last October before this witness's examination.

Signed by Thomas Powell and by the above three commissioners and by Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

23 January 1635/6

fos. 128v-129r (Witness 8), Ellen Nash alias Bydford, wife of John Bydford of Monkton, co. Pembroke, husbandman, born in the parish of Castlemartin, co. Pembroke, aged about 30

To Meyricke's libel:

For all her remembrance, Meyricke and his father were reputed and respected as gentlemen, for 'ought she can saie to the contrarie'. Catchmaye was an innkeeper in Pembroke and ever called or styled by the name of George Catchmayd, maior of the towne of Pembroke; and then he was called by reason of place and not otherwise as she believeth Master Catchmayd'. In January 1634/5 she was at Richard Gwilliam's house in Pembroke when 'George Catchmayd beinge moved with anger as she conceived', said to Meyricke 'in a deridinge and ignominious manner', 'Sirra Meyricke, thou art a base rogue a base customar and I will buy thee out of thy base office of customership'. Catchmaye then gave Meyricke the lie 'with other contumelious words which shee now remembers not.'

Signed by Ellen Bydford [her mark] and by the above three commissioners and by Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

Dated 23 January 1635/6

fos. 129v-130v (Witness 9), William Rogers, alderman of Pemboke, co. Pembroke, born in Tenby, co. Pembroke, aged about 70

To Meyricke's libel:

He had heard that Meyricke's grandfather was bishop of Bangor and that his father John Meyricke 'whilest he lived was Customer of the Port of Milford and a gentleman of good descent and for ought he ever knew to his remembrance for a gentleman accompted, reputed and taken'. Rowland Meyricke had been customer of the port of Milford for two years. He knew that Richard Catchmaye had been a servant in livery to Mr John Barlowe of Slebech about 40 years ago, and from long before his death 'to his dieing daie sold beere and wine within the towne of Pembroke, and soe doth now George Catchmayd'.

Signed by William Rogers [his mark] and by the above three commissioners and by Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

fos. 131r-v (Witness 10), Henry Banck of the parish of Beale Mary, in Pembroke, co. Pembroke, mercer, lived there for about 20 years, was born in Haverfordwest, co. Pembroke, aged about 35

To Meyricke's libel:

He knew Meyricke's father, John, was 'Customar of the Port of Milford and a very honest man and ever reputed and taken to be a gentleman, and soe liniallie descended; and soe Rowland by all the time he ever knew him was accompted a gentleman and now is Customar of the Port of Milford' He had heard that Catchmaye's father 'whilest he lived was a servant in lyverie unto Mr Barlowe of Sleebeech and was married unto a servant of that house; and hath heard it reported and objected unto George Catchmayd that he was the sonne of a bastard; but whether the father of George and George are gentlemen he knoweth not or whence they came'.

About December 1634 he was at the house of Alice Webb, widow, in Pembroke, in an inner room near the kitchen, with Meyricke, Catchmaye, Mr William Adams and others, when he heard Catchmaye 'in a Contumelious manner' say that Rowland Meyricke 'was a stincking Customer and that he would putt him out of his office of Customership if it cost him a Cli.'

Signed by Henry Banck and by the above three commissioners and by Lawrence Belringer, notary public.

Acta (5), fos. 132r-v, Notary public's certificate

Certificate in Latin signed by Lawrence Belringer, notary public that the below examinations had been completed and were now being returned.

Also signed by commissioners John Meyrick, David Adams and Thomas Adams.

No date.

Notary's mark.

Defendant's case

Acta (4), fo. 253, Defence

'I, George Catchmay for the yeare ending in October 1635 was mayor and chief magistrate under the king's Majestie of the town of Pembroke, and Rowland Merrick and one John Merrick brother to Rowland, and one Rees ap Rees servant to Rowland, and sett on and abetted by Rowland, or one of them, did within the time of my said mayoraltie in Pembroke take me by the beard and tore the band about my neck, and strake me seaven or eight times upon the head with a cudgel, and called me base mayor, and used other most rude and uncivill speeches, not here to be named against me, and the next day in further scorne and derision of me, and my said office, Rowland, John and Rees, or one of them abetted by the other, asked, How doth your Mayor's pate?'

'Rowland Merrick, John Merrick, and Rees ap Rees, or one of them, abetted and sett on by the other, [at the time aforesaid] and in the church at Pembroke [in time of divine service] there, sate above me, the mayor, in or near his seat, and publiquely affronted me there, and made wry mouths or a wry mouth att him, and crushed or justled and in the seate.'

'Rowland Merick [at the time and place aforesaid] often or at least once said to me, George Catchmaye I will make thee mayor these 7 years and will make thee spend more then thou art worth.'

Dated 2 June 1636

Signed by Thomas Eden.

Acta (4), fo. 254, Letters commissory for the defendant

Addressed to commissioners John Laherne, Hugh Bowen, Hugh Owen and Maurice Wogan, esqs, and also, John Meyricke, Charles Bowen, esqs, Thomas Adams and David Adams, gents, to meet in a cause of scandalous words provocative of a duel, from 27 to 29 September next, in the town hall of Pembroke.

Dated 2 June 1636.

Gilbert Dethick assigned Lodowick Bishop as notary public.

Acta (4), fo. 251, Letters substitutional

Dr Arthur Duck, the advocate for Rowland Meyricke, appointed the notary public to act for him as a substitute.

Dated 9 July 1636.

Short Latin document signed by Arthur Duck.

Acta (4), fo. 255, Plaintiff's interrogatory

Was Rowland Meyricke in the church? Did George Catchmaye leave his own seat in the church and come and sit in Rowland Meyricke's seat where he found Rowland's brother John seated? Did George Catchmaye then have in his pocket a warrant to apprehend John Meyricke; and did not Catchmaye then in time of divine service seek to apprehend him to the disturbance of the congregation? Did the minister thereupon forbear to read prayers?

No date.

No signatures.

Acta (4), fo. 256, Plaintiff's interrogatories

1. The witnesses were warned of the penalty for perjury and bearing false witness. What was their age, occupation, place and condition of living for the last seven years? Did they know the parties?

2. Was the witness of Catchmaye's family, a servant, a dependant, or a member of Pembroke's corporation? How much was he taxed in the last subsidy to the king?

3. Had the witness ever heard Catchmaye say to or of Rowland Meyricke 'that he was a base rogue, and that he lyed, and that he George Catchmay was as good a gentleman as any in Wales'? When, where and in whose presence were such words spoken'?

4. Was Meyricke first provoked by Catchmaye's words 'before any pretended violence was offered'? What words of provocation were spoken by Catchmaye, and were they 'spoken in an angry, malicious, and scornfull manner' against Meyricke'?

5. Where and before whom were the 'uncivill words or threatenings' against Catchmaye uttered? How did the witness know they were said by someone 'abetted and sett on by Rowland Merricke'?

6. Was Rowland Meyricke 'a gentleman anciently discended and soe commonly accounted, reputed and taken in the countrey where he liveth'?

7. Were the witnesses for Merricke 'of good name and fame, of honest life and conversation, such as will not depose untruly on their oaths and to whose testimony creditt is to be given'?

No date.

No signatures.

Acta (4), fos. 259r-265v Defence depositions

Taken before commissioners John Laugharne, Hugh Bowen, Hugh Owen, esqs and also Charles Bowen, esq, Thomas and David Adams, gents, and Lodovick Bishop of Tenby, notary public, on Tuesday 27 September 1636 in the town hall of Pembroke.

fos. 259r-260r (Witness 1), Richard Helliard of the parish of St Mary in the town of Pembroke, glover, born in Lamphey, co. Pembroke, aged 36

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. Catchmaye was mayor of Pembroke for the year ending in October 1635. He saw George Catchmaye's band torn, but by whom he knew not. He did not see Rowland, John or Rees take Catchmaye by the beard. He knew nothing of any of these three setting on anyone to tear Catchmaye's band. John Meyricke did strike Catchmaye 'two blowes upon the head with his staffe'. He did not hear John Meyricke then give Catchmaye 'any rude or uncivill speeches'. He did not hear any of the three the next day 'use any scornefull speeches, or asked howe doth your maiors pate.'

Signed by Richard Hellier and by the commissioners John Laugharne, Hugh Owen, Charles Bowen, Thomas Adams and David Adams.

To Meyricke's interrogatories:

1. He had known Rowland Meyrick for 7 years.

2. He was not allied, servant nor kindred to Catchmaye, but 'bailiff of Pembroke and a member of the corporation, but was not taxed in the last subsidy to the king'.

6. 'Rowland Meyricke is accompted, reputed and taken for a gentleman in the countrey where he liveth.'

Signed by Richard Hellier and by the above five commissioners.

fos. 260v-261r (Witness 2), James Jones of the parish of St Michael in Pembroke, glover, born in the parish of St Mary in Pembroke, aged 23

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. Catchmaid ended his office of mayor in October 1635. He did not know whether Rowland or John Merrick, or Rees ap Rees took Catchmaid by the beard, but that his band was torn from his neck by John Meyricke who then struck him on the head with his staff two or three times. 'But doth not know of any rude or uncivill words given by John Meyrick more then that he did bidd George Catchmaid kisse his tayle.'

Signed by James Johnes and by the above five commissioners.

To Meyricke's interrogatories:

1. He had known Rowland Meyrick for 7 years

2. He was not allied, servant nor kindred to Catchmaye, and had not borne office in Pembroke, but was a member of the corporation.

6. 'Rowland Meyrick is accompted, reputed and taken for a gentleman in the towne and countrey wherein he liveth.'

Signed by James Johnes and by the above five commissioners.

28 September 1636

fo. 261v (Witness 3), David Poyer of the parish of St Mary in Pembroke, glover, born in the parish of Pwllcrochan, in co. Pembroke, aged 24

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. Cathmaye was mayor until October 1635, and John Meyricke did ask him, 'Howe doth your Maior's pate'?

3. Rowland Meyricke said to Catchmaye 'well Mr Maior I think you wilbe maior this seven yeares for this'.

Signed by David Poyer and by the commissioners John Laugharne, Hugh Owen, Thomas Adams and David Adams.

fo. 262r (Witness 4), Robert Tydrone of the parish of St Mary in Pembroke, smith, born in the parish of Bishops Cannings, in Wiltshire, aged 50

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. Catchmaye was mayor until October 1635.

2. 'John Meyrick did sitt above George Catchmaid maior in a seate in the church, but whose seate it was he knoweth not.'

Signed by Robert Tydrone [his mark] and by the above four commissioners.

fo. 262v (Witness 5), Florence Roberts alias Vaughan of the parish of St Mary, Pembroke, wife of John Roberts, born in Pembroke, aged 40

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. As witness 4.

2. 'John Meyrick did in the time of divine service sitt above George Catchmaid, then maior, but did not see him affront or make wry mouth at George Catchmaid, nor crush or justle him in the pate of George.'

3. 'She doth not knowe any thinge thereof.'

Signed by Florence Roberts [her mark] and by the above four commissioners.

fos. 263r-264r (Witness 6), John Frayne of the parish of St Michaels in the town of Pembroke, glover, born in the parish of St Mary's in Pembroke, aged 40

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. As witness 4.

2. He 'sawe John Meyrick sitting in a seate in the church the time' mentioned, within George Catchmaye's mayoralty. He did not see Rowland Meyricke, John Meyricke or Rees ap Rees 'publiquely affront the maior, or made any wry mouth at him'. Rowland took John Meyricke 'by the hande to passe awaie out of church, John then sittinge within the maior as foresaid, and passing by him George Catchmaid then maior at his going by him fell upon the side of the seate with his brest'.

3. He heard Rowland Meyricke say that he would make George Catchmaye 'maior these seven yeares, but did not here him saie that he would make him spende more then his worth.'

Signed by John Frayne and by the above four commissioners.

To Meyricke's interrogatories:

1. He had known Catchmaye seven years or more.

2. He was not a servant, kindred, or dependant of Catchmaye's but had served as sergeant at mace in the Pembroke corporation, and was not taxed in the last subsidy for the king.

6. Rowland Meyricke was 'accompted reputed and taken for a gent in the towne and countrey wherein he liveth.'

8. 'John Meyrick was in the church, and sitting in the seate wherein he usually did use to sitt when he came to church. George Catchmaid then maior and sitting in the seate, wherein the maior of the towne for the time being is used to sit, did then arise out of his seate, about the middest of praiers, and came down to the seate wherein John Meyrick did sitt, and the maior then did sitt in the same seate with John Meyricke; and John Meyrick being in the same seate before the maior came thither, did sitt still in the seate. Afterwards Rowland Meyrick came into the church and sate in the same seate with the maior and John Meyrick'. He did not know whether George Catchmaye had then in his pocket a warrant to apprehend John Meyricke. He did not see George Catchmaye in time of divine service seek to apprehend John Meyricke. The minister did not forbear to read prayers 'until he had ended the same.'

Signed by John Frayne and by the above four commissioners.

fos. 264r-264v (Witness 7), Richard Gwilliam of the parish of St Mary in Pembroke for thirty years, born in the parish of Ambleston, co. Pembroke, aged 54

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. Catchmaye was mayor until October 1635. 'John Meyrick did call George Catchmaid then maior, base maior, with many other rude and uncivill speeches.'

2. 'John Meyrick in the church and in the time of divine service did sitt above the maior in another seate, and having his staff in his hande putt it to his mouth and looked downewards towards the maior; but whether he did the same to affront the maior he knoweth not.'

Signed by Richard Gwillin and by the commissioners Laugharne and Owen.

29 September 1636

fos. 264v-265r (Witness 8), Henry Bankes of the parish of St Mary in Pembroke for 20 years, mercer, born in the town of Haverfordwest, aged 37

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. Catchmaye was mayor until October 1635.

2. 'John Meyrick did sitt in a seate with George Catchmaid above him, maior of the town of Pembroke. And afterward Rowland Meyrick came to the church and sate in the same seate with the maior and John Meyrick. And Rowland spake to John Meyrick that he had some business to speake with him then and reached his hand towards him and willed him to walke foorth that he might speake with him. Whereupon John Meyrick arose to goe foorth with Rowland, and came by the maior out of the seate, and went together out of the church.'

Signed by Henry Bankes and by the commissioners Laugharne and Owen.

fos. 265r-265v (Witness 9), Richard Hinton of the parish of St Mary in Pembroke, clerk, for 50 years, mercer, born in the parish of Lamphey, co. Pembroke, aged 79

To Catchmaye's defence:

1. Catchmaye was mayor until October 1635. He heard John Meyricke call George Catchmaye 'base maior', and use 'many other rude and uncivill speeches to and of the maior'. Whether 'he was abetted or sett on by any other he knoweth not.'

2. He saw John Meyricke in a seat in the church and mayor Catchmaye sitting in the same seat by him. Soon afterwards Rowland Meyricke came into the church and sat in the same seat with them. Then Rowland talked with John Meyricke and the Meyrickes then 'went both together out of the church.'

Signed by Richard Hinton and by the commissioners Laugharne and Owen.

Acta (4), fo. 258v, Notary public's certificate

Certificate in Latin signed by Lodovick Bishop notary public, that the above examinations had been completed and were now being returned.

Dated 29 September 1636.

Notary public's mark.

Acta (4), fo. 266, Return to letters commissory

Commissioners John Laugharne, Hugh Bowen, Hugh Owen and Charles Bowen esqs, Thomas Adams and David Adams, gents, with Lodovick Bishop as notary public.

Dated 29 September 1636.

Summary of proceedings

Dr Duck was counsel for Meyricke, Dr Eden for Catchmaye. In May and June 1636 Dr Eden began to relate material for the defence. On 28 January 1637 Dr Eden had to prove the material for the defence and he petitioned to publish the depositions of Catchmaye's witnesses. On 16 February 1637, Dr Duck decreed that Catchmaye should be warned to pay £20 by the first session of Easter term 1637. He was to pay 30 pounds or marks damages by the first session of court after the feast of St John the Baptist, and £30 in the first session after Michaelmas. On 29 April 1637 Dr Duck petitioned that sentence might be heard, and Catchmaye had been fined £50 for damages and expenses by 27 January 1638.

Notes

On 21 October 1633 John and Rowland Meyricke were appointed collectors of the customs of the port of Milford Haven. On 15 February 1634 a Rowland Meyricke, esq, was ordered to be arrested and brought before Star Chamber.

J. Broadway, R. Cust and S. K. Roberts (eds.), A Calendar of the Docquets of Lord Keeper Coventry, 1625-1640 (List and Index Society, special series, 35, 2004), part 2, pp. 305, 450.

Sir John Meyricke of Monkton, co. Pembroke (c.1600-1659), was M.P. for Newcastle-under-Lyme in the Long Parliament and a close associate of the earl of Essex, commanding the artillery in Essex's parliamentarian army.

A. Hopper, 'Sir John Meyricke', Oxford DNB (Oxford, 2004); M. F. Keeler, The Long Parliament, 1640-1641: A Biographical Dictionary of its Members (Philadelphia, 1954), pp. 272-3.

Documents

  • Initial proceedings
    • Libel: Acta (5), fo. 142 (11 Nov 1635)
  • Plaintiff's case
    • Letters commissory for the plaintiff: Acta (5), fo. 143 (12 Nov 1635)
    • Names of commissioners: 7/71 (12 Dec 1635)
    • Defence interrogatories: 14/1i (no date)
    • Plaintiff depositions: Acta (5) fos. 118-31 (18, 22, 23 Jan 1636)
    • Notary public's certificate: Acta (5) fo. 132 (no date)
  • Defendant's case
    • Defence: Acta (4), fo. 253 (2 Jun 1636)
    • Letters commissory for he defendant: Acta (4), fo. 254 (2 Jun 1636)
    • Letters substitutional: Acta (4), fo. 251 (9 Jul 1636)
    • Plaintiff interrogatories: Acta (4), fo. 255 (no date)
    • Plaintiff interrogatories: Acta (4), fo. 256 (no date)
    • Defence depositions: Acta (4), fos. 259-65 (27 Sep 1636)
    • Notary public's certificate: Acta (4), fo. 258 (29 Sep 1636)
    • Return to letters commissory: Acta (4), fo. 266 (29 Sep 1636)
  • Proceedings
    • Proceedings before Arundel: College of Arms MS. 'Court of Chivalry' (act book, 1636-8) [pressmark R.R. 68C] (hereafter 68C), fos. 89r-100r (May 1636)
    • Proceedings before Maltravers: 68C, fos. 112r-121v (Jun 1636)
    • Proceedings before Sir Henry Marten: 68C, fos. 111r-v (15 Jun 1636)
    • Proceedings before Arundel: 68C, fos. 51r-59r (28 Jan 1637)
    • Proceedings: 68C, fos. 23r-36v (11 Feb 1637)
    • Proceedings: 68C, fos. 1r-11r (16 Feb 1637)
    • Proceedings: 68C, fos. 37r-41v (29 Apr 1637)
    • Proceedings before Arundel: 8/26 (14 Oct 1637)
    • Proceedings before Maltravers: 8/27 (14 Oct 1637)
    • Proceedings before Maltravers: 1/5, fos. 1-15 (27 Jan 1638)

People mentioned in the case

  • Adams, David, gent
  • Adams, Thomas, gent
  • Adams, William, Mr
  • ap Rees, Rees
  • Banck, Henry, mercer (also Bankes)
  • Barlow, John, Mr
  • Bealman, Henry, gent
  • Belringer, Lawrence, notary public
  • Bishop, Lodowick, notary public
  • Bowen, Charles, esq
  • Bowen, Hugh, esq
  • Bydford, John, husbandman
  • Catchmaye, George (also Catchmaid, Catchmay, Catchmayd)
  • Catchmaye, Richard, innkeeper (also Catchmaid, Catchmay, Catchmayd)
  • Davies, Ludovick, gent
  • Dethick, Gilbert, registrar
  • Devereux, Robert, earl of Essex
  • Duck, Arthur, lawyer
  • Eden, Thomas, lawyer
  • Evan
  • Frayne, John, glover
  • Griffith, George William, gent
  • Griffiths, Jo.
  • Gwilliam, Richard, mayor (also Gwillin)
  • Helliard, Richard, glover (also Hellier)
  • Hinton, Richard, clerk
  • Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
  • Howard, Thomas, earl of Arundel and Surrey
  • Jones, James, glover
  • Laugharne, John, esq (also Lahorne, Laherne)
  • March, Edward
  • Marten, Henry, knight
  • Meyricke, John, esq (also Meyrick, Merrick)
  • Meyricke, Rowland, gent (also Meyrick, Merrick)
  • Nash alias Bydford, Ellen
  • Owen, Hugh, esq
  • Peynon, William
  • Powell, Thomas, gent
  • Poyer, David, glover
  • Poyer, John, skinner
  • Prichard, Richard, clerk
  • Roberts, John
  • Roberts alias Vaughan, Florence
  • Rogers, William, alderman
  • Stuart, Charles I, king
  • Tunth, Cole, Mr
  • Tydrone, Robert
  • Webb alias Roberts, Alice, widow
  • Wogan, Maurice, esq

Places mentioned in the case

  • Caernarfonshire
    • Bangor
  • Pembrokeshire
    • Ambleston
    • Castlemartin
    • Slebech
    • Haverfordwest
    • Llanstadwell
    • Lamphey
    • Linney
    • Milford Haven
    • Monkton
    • Pwllcrochan
    • St Davids
    • St Mary's, Pembroke
    • St Michael's, Pembroke
    • St Peter's, Pembroke
    • Slebech
    • Stackpole Elidor
    • Tenby
  • Staffordshire
    • Newcastle-under-Lyme
    • Bishops Cannings
  • Wales
  • Wiltshire
    • Bishops Cannings

Topics of the case

  • allegation of illegitimacy
  • apparel
  • assault
  • calling sirrah
  • calling thou
  • civil war
  • coat of arms
  • comparison
  • denial of gentility
  • drunkenness
  • facial gesture
  • giving the lie
  • heraldry
  • livery
  • Long Parliament
  • mayor
  • member of parliament
  • military officer
  • office-holding
  • other courts
  • parliamentarian
  • pew dispute
  • scatological insult
  • Star Chamber
  • taxation
  • weapon