630 Strode v Clarke

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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'630 Strode v Clarke', in The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, (, ) pp. . British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/630-strode-clarke [accessed 5 March 2024]

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Robert Strode of St Edmund, Lombard Street, London, gent v John Clarke of St Michael, Cornhill, London, merchant tailor

August 1639


Strode complained that on 25 March 1639 Clarke, without provocation, called him 'Base Rogue', and had since called him 'scurvy rascall, Jack and base fellowe'. The quarrel had arisen over the settling of a debt in the presence of Thomas Warren and Tobias Wingfield, drapers. Process was granted on 6 August 1639 and Strode entered bond on the 28th; but no further proceedings survive.

Initial proceedings

6/59, Affidavit

'Thomas Warren and Tobyas Wingfeld, citizens and drapers of London, make oath that they being about the 25 of March last in the company of Robert Strode and John Clarke, upon making up of certeyne accompts betweene them, they say that John Clarke, in the presents of these deponents, did in reprochfull speeches and termes call Robert Strode, "Base Rogue," without any provocation of Robert Strode thereunto.'

3 August 1639

Signed by Thomas Warrin, Tobyas Wingfeld and Robert Riche.

6/58, Petition

'Your petitioner and John Clarke, citizen of London, being together about the 25th day of March last about making even certeine accounts betweene your petitioner and him, Clarke in reprochefull and scornefull manner, without any provocation or justification of your petitioner, called and vilified your petitioner by the name of Base Rogue, as by the affidavits of two sufficient men hereunto annexed appeareth.

That since, upon conference between your petitioner and him, he hath called your petitioner scurvy Rascall, Jack and base fellowe.

That your petitioner is much prejudiced in his credit thereby, being a gentleman of ancient discent, and able so to prove himself to bee.'

Petitioned that Clerke be brought to answer.

Maltravers granted process on 6 August 1639.

6/57, Plaintiff's bond

28 August 1639

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

Signed by Robert Strode.

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


The plaintiff may have been the Robert Strode, silkman, mentioned in the 1664 visitation. Otherwise, neither party appears in the Visitations of London.

J. B. Whitmore and A. W. Hughes Clarke (eds.), London Visitation Pedigrees, 1664 (Publications of the Harleian Society, 92, 1940), p. 125.

On 12 September 1638 Robert Strode, citizen and mercer of London, was pardoned for having fraudulently marked satins with the mark of Daniel Harvey, merchant of London, in order to enhance their price.

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, p. 275.


  • Initial proceedings
    • Affidavit: 6/59 (3 Aug 1639)
    • Petition: 6/58 (6 Aug 1639)
    • Plaintiff's bond: 6/57 (28 Aug 1639)

People mentioned in the case

  • Clarke, John, merchant tailor
  • Harvey, Daniel, merchant
  • Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
  • Riche, Robert
  • Strode, Edward, gent
  • Terrick, Humphrey
  • Warren, Thomas, draper
  • Wingfield, Tobias, draper

Places mentioned in the case

  • London
    • St Edmund, Lombard Street
    • St Michael, Cornhill
  • Middlesex
    • Westminster

Topics of the case

  • debt
  • denial of gentility
  • nicknaming