720 Withering v Young

The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640.

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Richard Cust. Andrew Hopper, '720 Withering v Young', The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/720-withering-young [accessed 19 June 2024].

Richard Cust. Andrew Hopper. "720 Withering v Young", in The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, (, ) . British History Online, accessed June 19, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/720-withering-young.

Cust, Richard. Hopper, Andrew. "720 Withering v Young", The Court of Chivalry 1634-1640, (, ). . British History Online. Web. 19 June 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/no-series/court-of-chivalry/720-withering-young.

In this section


John Withering of London, esq v Richard Young of London, mercer

No date


Withering, the master of the royal swans, complained that the previous May, on hearing that Young had spoken scandalous words of him, he went to his house and asked him why he had done so. In reply, Young gave him the lie, and Withering retaliated by threatening to strike him with his hand; however, through the mediation of bystanders they were made friends. Shortly after Young had Withering imprisoned in the Counter on a pretended suit of battery and Withering petitioned the Earl Marshal to deal with Young, the sergeants and those who had arrested him, and restore his credit. No further proceedings survive.

Initial proceedings

EM341, Petition

'About Maye last, one Richard Young, a citizen of London, mercer, having given out many scandalous and reproachful speeches of your honor's petitioner, who hearing thereof, repaired unto Young's house to know the cause of those his disgracefull speeches; and upon the first demand thereof, Young gave your petitioner the lye, with many other provoking speeches. Whereupon your petitioner did offer to stryke at him with his hand; but upon the mediacon of their wellwillers, they were made friends, and so continued a long time after.

Nowe so it is (may it please your good honor) that your petitioner being upon a preferment in marriage, which Young hearing of, did (notwithstanding the agreement) secretly procure a supplicant oute of the Chancery against your petitioner, and did arrest him thereupon with the sergeants of London; and (refusing to take bayle of him) did most disgracefully carry him to the Counter prison in London. And not so content, but most maliciously entred an accon thear of 500li against your petitioner whome he supposed could not have found bayle thereunto, and hath since declared that he is dampnified the some of 500li for the pretended batterie.

Most humblie therefore praieth your honor to take such course with Younge and Sergeants, as your honor shall thinke fitt for the repayring of your petitioner's credit, and damage hereby sustained. And (as in duty bound) he shall dayly pray for your lordship's long life with encrease of honor and c.'

No date.

No signatures.


John Withering, esq, was the son of Thomas Withering of co. Staffordshire. He was Master of the Royal Swans in 1629.

J. Jackson Howard (ed.), The Visitation of London, 1633, 1634 and 1635 (Publications of the Harleian Society, 17, 1883), vol. 2, p. 340; 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, 34, and 37, 2004), part 1, p. 31; part 4, 741.


  • Initial proceedings
    • Petition: EM341 (no date)

People mentioned in the case

  • Howard, Thomas, earl of Arundel and Surrey
  • Withering, John, esq (also Witherings)
  • Withering, Thomas (also Witherings)
  • Young, Richard, mercer

Places mentioned in the case

  • London
  • Staffordshire

Topics of the case

  • arbitration
  • assault
  • giving the lie
  • imprisonment
  • royal servant
  • threatened violence