696 West v Crutchman alias West

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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'696 West v Crutchman alias West', in The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, (, ) pp. . British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/696-west-crutchman-west [accessed 5 March 2024]

In this section


Richard West of Pontefract, co. York, gent v George Crutchman, alias West, of Basingstoke, co. Hampshire

April - June 1635


West claimed that he was the great grandson of Thomas West, Lord De La Ware and, in a case which ran in tandem with Lady De La Ware's action against Crutchman [see cause 156], complained that in May or June 1634, in the City of London, Crutchman had declared him to be an imposter. Therefore, in June 1635, he requested the court to grant him restitution of his honour and reputation. No further proceedings survive in this case, but in September 1639, his descent was affirmed in the submission ordered to be made by Thomas Green of Pontefract [see cause 697].

Initial proceedings

9/4/4, Libel

The libel alleged that Richard West was the son of John West of Burghwallis, co. York, who was the only son of Leonard West of the same, who was the son of Thomas West, Lord Delawar, to whom Richard was therefore related. It further alleged that George Crutchman was the son of William Crutchman, who was the son of John Crutchman, who came from the west of England and lived in Basingstoke. This John was commonly known as 'Jacke of the West' and was from an obscure and ignoble family; notwithstanding this for up to 20 years last past George had claimed to be descended form the noble family of the Barons Delawar and had publicly claimed to be so at Basingstoke in a certificate issued by Sir William Segar, Garter King of Arms. In May or June last past, in the City of London, Crutchman had declared Richard West to be an imposter.

West therefore requested the court to grant him restitution of his honour and reputation.

20 June 1635.

Endorsed 26 June 1635.

No signatures.

Summary of proceedings

Dr Merrick acted as counsel for West and Dr Eden for Crutchman. The cause came before the Earl of Huntingdon, Lord Maltravers, Sir Henry Marten, Sir Francis Crane and Sir Henry Spelman on 20 June 1635 and Dr Merrick delivered the libel for West.


For another account of the case see, G. D. Squibb, Reports of Heraldic Cases in the Court of Chivalry, 1623-1732 (London, 1956), p. 20.

Richard West did not appear in Dugdale's Visitation of York, nor Clay's pedigrees of minor gentry.

R. Davies (ed.), The Visitation of the County of Yorke begun in 1665 and finished in 1666, by William Dugdale (Surtees Society, 36, 1859); J. W. Clay (ed.), Familiae Minorum Gentium (Publications of the Harleian Society, 37-40, 1894-6).


  • Initial proceedings
    • Libel: 9/4/4 (20 Jun 1635)
  • Proceedings
    • Proceedings before Huntingdon: 8/25 (20 Jun 1635)
    • Undated proceedings: R.19, fos. 390-399 (c. Jun 1635?)

People mentioned in the case

  • Crane, Francis, knight
  • Crutchman, John
  • Crutchman, William
  • Crutchman alias West, George
  • Eden, Thomas, lawyer
  • Green, Thomas
  • Hastings, Henry, earl of Huntingdon
  • Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
  • Marten, Henry, knight
  • Merrick, William, lawyer
  • Segar, William, knight
  • Spelman, Henry, knight
  • West, John, gent
  • West, Leonard, esq
  • West, Richard, gent
  • West, Thomas, baron De La Ware (also Delawar)

Places mentioned in the case

  • Hampshire
    • Basingstoke
  • Yorkshire, West Riding
    • Burghwallis
    • Pontefract

Topics of the case

  • denial of gentility
  • false claim to gentility
  • King of Arms