This free content was Born digital and sponsored by AHRC and University of Birmingham. CC-NC-BY.
575 SALISBURY V MARTEN
Fulke Salisbury of the city of Chester, alderman v Samuel Marten of the same, gent
October 1638 - February 1639
Salisbury, an alderman of Chester, complained that Marten, a mercer, had 'said that Salisburie was a Welch rogue, and that he was as good a man and a better gentleman than Salisbury; and that the Martens were better gentlemen then the Salisburys... though he wore a violett gowne'. The libel was given on 20 October 1638 and on 20 November Dr Duck was due to nominate commissioners for the examination of Salisbury's witnesses; however, proceedings on 23 February 1639 refer to an agreement being reached between the parties. [For Marten's counter suit, see cause 412].
1. Salisbury was from an ancient family of co. Denbigh, who had been gentry for up to 300 years, and he was also an alderman of the city of Chester. Marten was not a gentleman, but a mercer.
2. Marten had 'said that Salisburie was a Welch rogue, and that he was as good a man and a better gentleman than Salisbury; and that the Martens were better gentlemen then the Salisburys, *and said he was as good a man as Salisbury* though he wore a violett gowne'.
3. The contemptuous words were provocative of a duel.
20 October 1638
Signed by Arthur Duck.
R.19, fo. 21r, Summary of libel
'Salisbury and his ancestors have been gentry for above 300 years past, descended of the ancient family of Salisbury in the county of Denbigh; and that he is an alderman of the said city and was sheriffe of the same; and is one of the coroners of the city; *and that Marten is a mercer.* And that Marten (such a time and place) before many gentlemen and others, said that Salisbury was a Welsh rogue, and he was as good a man, and a better gentleman, and that the Martens were better men then the Salisburyes, and was as good a man as Salisbury though he wore a violet gowne, thereby to provoke and c.'
Michaelmas term, 1638
Summary of proceedings
Dr Duck acted as counsel for Salisbury and Dr Exton for Martin. On 20 October 1638 Dr Exton was warned to appear for Samuel Marten, Dr Duck gave the libel and affirmed Salisbury's gentility. On 6 November Dr Exton denied the libel and was ordered to prove his allegations in the first session of the next term. On 20 November Dr Duck was to nominate the commissioners, day and place for the examination of the witnesses upon the libel. Proceedings on 23 February 1639 appeared to refer to an agreement being reached between the parties.
For a full transcription of Salisbury's libel, see G. D. Squibb, The High Court of Chivalry: A Study in the Civil Law in England (Oxford, 1959), appendix XVI, pp. 254-5.
A Fulke Salisbury of Chester did not appear in the 1613 Visitation but one Foulke Salisbury's son, George Salisbury was listed as married to Elizabeth, daughter of Robert Chaloner.
G. J. Armytage and J. P. Rylands (ed.), Pedigrees made at the Visitation of Cheshire, 1613 (Publications of the Harleian Society, 59, 1909), p. 61.
- Initial proceedings
- Libel: 11/32/5 (20 Oct 1638)
- Summary of libel: R.19, fo. 21r (Mic 1638)
- Proceedings before Arundel: R.19, fos. 434r-449v (20 Oct 1638)
- Proceedings before Maltravers: R.19, fos. 454r-468v (6 Nov 1638)
- Proceedings before Maltravers: R.19, fos. 400v-412v (20 Nov 1638)
- Proceedings before Arundel: 1/6, fos. 1-9 (23 Feb 1639)
People mentioned in the case
- Chaloner, Elizabeth
- Chaloner, Robert
- Duck, Arthur, lawyer
- Exton, Thomas, lawyer
- Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
- Howard, Thomas, earl of Arundel and Surrey
- Marten, Samuel, gent / mercer (also Martin)
- Salisbury, Elizabeth
- Salisbury, Fulke, gent
- Salisbury, George
Places mentioned in the case
Topics of the case
- provocation to a duel