Foreign bought and sold

Pages 144-145

Analytical Index to the Series of Records Known as the Remembrancia 1579-1664. Originally published by EJ Francis, London, 1878.

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Foreign Bought And Sold.

I. 14. Letter from the Lords of the Council to the Lord Mayor, Aldermen, and Recorder, directing that certain bales of books belonging to the Brickmans, (fn. 1), and other foreign stationers, which had been delivered to the carrier of Cambridge, to be conveyed to the Universities there, and had been seized, upon the pretence that the same were foreign bought and sold, and so forfeited by the Charter of the City, should be given up to the said stationers, to be conveyed to their destination. The Council had been creditably informed that the like trade had been carried on for the space of eighty years and upwards, and had never hitherto been hindered. They desired, for their information, particulars of the City's right in respect thereof.
29th May, 1579.

I. 15. Letter from the Lord Mayor to the Lords of the Council, in reply, disclaiming, on the part of the City and of the Wardens of the Stationers' Company, that the books referred to had been seized (fn. 2) by their cognizance or direction; certain mean men of the Company, relying upon the liberties of the City and certain Statutes, had made the seizure. Order had, however, been taken for their restoration. The Stationers furthers said, that though it was against the liberties of the City, yet in favour of learning and the Universities they had never denied to any learned man or student or others, to buy books of strangers for their use, whereby the Citizens lost the retail. But this case of the Chapmen of Cambridge buying their books of the Bricquemen and Frenchmen to sell again did not benefit the students or the Universities, the same books being carried by the Citizens to the Universities, and sold cheaper; it only profited a few of the townsmen of Oxford and Cambridge. He begged that the poor Stationers might be heard by the Council, and relieved.
The last day of May, 1579.

I. 29. Letter from the Lords of the Council to the Lord Mayor Aldermen, and Recorder, complaining of the seizure of books intended for the Universities, and calling attention to the Order made upon the same subject last year, and further directing that the said books should be at once restored.
27th May, 1580.

I. 124. Letter from the Lord Mayor to the Vice-Chancellor and the heads of the University of Cambridge, respecting the difference between the City and certain booksellers of Cambridge, and stating that Mr. Norton had been appointed by the City to treat with them touching the whole matter.
7th August, 1580.

II. 125. Letter from the Vice-Chancellor, John Hatcher, (fn. 3) to the Lord Mayor and Aldermen, in reply, expressing an anxious desire that a conference might be had, and a settlement made of the matter.
9th September, 1580.

II. 247. Letter from the Lord Mayor to the Lord Treasurer (the Earl of Dorset), acknowledging the receipt of his letter requesting information concerning certain strangers' goods seized upon as foreign bought and foreign sold, and informing him that, after calling before him the complainants, he was of opinion that the poor man (fn. 4) had been drawn into the transaction. He recommended that no further steps should be taken.
20th October, 1604.


  • 1. Francis Bryckman, an honest merchant who kept a shop in St. Paul's Churchyard, published 'Lyndewode's Provinciale' in 1525; it was printed for him at Antwerp. See 'Archæologia,' vol. xxxiv. p. 429.
  • 2. From the following decree of the Star Chamber, it will be seen that the Company had the power to search and seize all doubtful books:— "A decree of Starre-Chamber for the reformation of divers disorders in printing and uttering of books. June 29th, 1566. "Whoever prints anything against any injunction or ordinance set forth by the Queen's authority shall be imprisoned and thenceforth never use the 'feat' of Printing. The Wardens of the Stationers' Company to search Printing-houses, and to open and view all packs, dryfats, maunds, and other things wherein books may be contained, and to sell them." In Arber's Transcript of the Registers of the Stationers' Company, vol. i. folio 76 B, is the following entry:—"Recevyd for[i.e. by the sale of] serten bokes in frynshe and Englesshe, which was taken goynge hawkynge aboute the stretes, which ys contrary to the orders of the Cytie of London, iiijs iiijd."
  • 3. Of St. John's College; B.A., 1531–2; M.A., 1542. Was afterwards Regins Professor of Physic. He was elected Vice-Chancellor of the University November, 1579, for the year then ensuing. He purchased the site of the dissolved House of the Augustine Friars in Cambridge in 1545, where he died in 1586–7. He held considerable property in Lincolnshire.
  • 4. No name mentioned.