704 Whitaker v Clarke

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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Citation:

Richard Cust. Andrew Hopper, '704 Whitaker v Clarke', The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/704-whitaker-clarke [accessed 17 June 2024].

Richard Cust. Andrew Hopper. "704 Whitaker v Clarke", in The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, (, ) . British History Online, accessed June 17, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/704-whitaker-clarke.

Cust, Richard. Hopper, Andrew. "704 Whitaker v Clarke", The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, (, ). . British History Online. Web. 17 June 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/704-whitaker-clarke.

In this section

704 WHITAKER V CLARKE

Tobias Whitaker of Ipswich, co. Suffolk, M.D. v Robert Clarke of the same, attorney

May 1639

Abstract

Whitaker, a doctor of physic, complained that Clarke had affronted him in the presence of several gentlemen in May 1639, saying, 'Tobie, I will abuse you; I will abuse you, Tobie', and declaring that he 'was noe gentleman, and that he was noe doctor, and that he was a base fellowe, and not worthie to wipe his capteine's shoes'. Whitaker added that Clarke then called him 'a quacke, an empericke', and, alluding to the fact that he was wearing a mourning ribbon, said, 'you have your halter about your necke and you want nothing but hanging'. Clarke allegedly boasted that he would affirm all this 'in writinge under his hand for a shilling', and did indeed publish 'some scandalous libels'. Process was granted on 26 May 1639 and both parties entered bonds; but no further proceedings survive.

Initial proceedings

6/133, Petition to Maltravers

'Your petitioner is a gentleman ancientlie descended and beareth armes. and that Robert Clarke of Ipswich, in or about the month of Maye nowe current, thrust himself into your petitioner's companie, being then in companie of diverse gentlemen, and told your petitioner, Tobie, I will abuse you; I will abuse you, Tobie, often repeating these words. and said that your petitioner was noe gentleman, and that he was noe doctor, and that he was a base fellowe, and not worthie to wipe his capteine's shoes, said you are a quacke, an empericke; and that your petitioner having a mourning ribbon about his necke, Clarke said to your petitioner, you have your halter about your necke and you want nothing but hanging; and vaunted that he would affirme the premises in writinge under his hand for a shilling, and according did publishe some scandalous libels to the effect aforesaid: by which wordes publikelie uttered to the disgrace and scandal of your petitioner, he provoked your petitioner to a combat or duell.'

Petitioned that Clarke be brought to answer.

Maltravers granted process on 26 May 1639.

6/134, Plaintiff's bond

27 May 1639

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

Signed by Tobias Whitaker.

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

6/131, Defendant's bond

27 May 1639

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

Signed by Robert Clarke.

Signed, sealed and delivered in the presence of Humphrey Terrick.

Notes

Robert Clarke of Ipswich was the son of Robert Clarke of Norwich and Huntingfield, co. Suffolk. He married Mary, daughter of Christopher Ballard of Ipswich, and together they had a son, another Robert Clarke of Ipswich who was town clerk there in 1664, and married Griscill, daughter of Thomas Corbold of Debenham, co. Suffolk. Tobias Whitaker did not appear in the Visitation or pedigrees.

W. H. Rylands (ed.), A Visitation of the County of Suffolk, 1664-1668 (Publications of the Harleian Society, 61, 1910), p. 139; A. Campling (ed.), East Anglia Pedigrees (Publications of the Harleian Society, 91 and 97, 1939 and 1945).

Documents

  • Initial proceedings
    • Petition to Maltravers: 6/133 (26 May 1639)
    • Plaintiff's bond: 6/134 (27 May 1639)
    • Defendant's bond: 6/131 (27 May 1639)

People mentioned in the case

  • Ballard, Christopher
  • Ballard, Mary
  • Clark, Griscill
  • Clarke, Mary
  • Clarke, Robert
  • Clarke, Robert, attorney
  • Clarke, Robert, town clerk
  • Corbold, Griscill
  • Corbold, Thomas
  • Howard, Henry, baron Maltravers
  • Terrick, Humphrey
  • Whitaker, Tobias, physician

Places mentioned in the case

  • Middlesex
    • Westminster
  • Suffolk
    • Debenham
    • Huntingfield
    • Ipswich

Topics of the case

  • denial of gentility
  • insult before gentlemen
  • nicknaming
  • provocative of a duel