Pages 29-32

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

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I. 62. Letter from the Lords of the Council to the Lord Mayor, informing him that there had been of late printed and published within the City a certain libel entitled 'A Discovery of the Gaping Gulf,' &c. (fn. 1) wherein the author had not only very contemptuously intermeddled in matters of estate touching Her Majesty's Person, but had also uttered certain things to the dishonour of the Duke of Anjou, (fn. 2) brother to the French King, the intention evidently being to cause a suspicion of Her Majesty's actions, as tending to the prejudice of the realm and the subversion of the estate of true religion; and directing him, attended by the Aldermen and Sheriffs, to publish the Proclamation issued by Her Majesty upon the subject, in the accustomed places; and also to call before him the Masters, Governors, and Wardens of the several Companies, and in Her Majesty's name command them to assemble in their several Halls the members of their Company, and to have the proclamation openly read and published; and to charge all persons having copies of such books to bring in the same, to be delivered to the Lord Mayor with the names of the parties, and the manner how they came into their possession, except in cases where any person should willingly bring in the same themselves to be destroyed, according to the Proclamation, and to certify to the Council the particulars of each case, in order that steps might be taken to punish those found culpable.
Dated from Giddyhall, (fn. 3) 27th September, 1579.
[Vide"Provisions," Vol. I., No. 66.]

I. 98. Letter from the Lord Mayor to the Lord Bishop of London, (fn. 4) enclosing a copy of a letter, with a copy of a printed pamphlet sent to Mr. Levesey, a justice of the peace for Surrey, by Mr. John Newman, a Papist; by which letter it appeared that the writer had absented himself from England, and had travelled in foreign parts and Rome for Papistry, which he called "Truth oppressed and driven into corners." As the matter concerned religious doctrine, it had been thought better to forward the document to be dealt with by Her Majesty's Commissioners for Ecclesiastical Causes. In the mean time order had been taken by the Wardens of the Stationers' Company, that both the printer and the persons from whom he received the pamphlet might be forthcoming.
10th June, 1580.

I. 450. Letter from the Lord Mayor to the Lords of the Council, acknowledging the receipt of their instructions to apprehend and examine two of the inhabitants of the City, William Humberston and Robert Foster, touching the shipping of a dry-fat (fn. 5) of books from London to Calais, under the colour of worsted yarn, and stating that he had immediately appointed Mr. Alderman Webbe (fn. 6) and Mr. Norton, together with Mr. Town Clerk, (fn. 7) to make search for Humberston in Buttolph Lane; and Mr. Alderman Martin, with Mr. Norton, to search for Foster in Paternoster Row. Humberston had been apprehended; but Foster could not be found. Humberston, who had been examined, denied the charge, although his servant Hutton stated to the contrary, that he had directed the shipment of the books. In searching his counting-house, certain suspicious letters had been found: one written on the 12th of December, from one Beake, whom Humberston stated to be a prisoner at Canterbury for Papistry, to send him such Popish books, and making special mention of Mr. Kirkham, from whom this dry-fat of books came. This letter, with the others and his examination, had been forwarded for the information of their Lordships. Humberston remained a close prisoner in Newgate until their further pleasure should be made known.
5th December, 1582.

I. 453. Letter from the Lords of the Council to the Lord Mayor, informing him that there had been intercepted at the sea-coast a certain drifat full of Popish and superstitious books, directed, under the pretence of a barrel of worsted yarn, to certain inhabitants of the City, and requiring him in the most secret manner to send for Mr. Norton and some others whom he could trust, and to give orders to them, with the assistance of the Alderman's Deputy of the Ward, or the constable or officers, to enter at one instant into both their houses and to apprehend and commit them to close custody, without their having conference with any one until they had been examined and their houses searched; the parties should be afterwards examined touching the sending of anything to fugitives beyond seas, or receiving anything from them, and to ascertain from whom the said books had been sent, and to whom they should have been delivered. Certificate to be made to the Council of the steps taken to carry out these instructions.
30th December, 1582.

II. 327. Letter from the Lord Mayor to the Lords of the Council, concerning a search to be made for some persons about the City, busied in translating a scandalous book against the State, and reporting the capture of two books which were sent, sealed up in a canvas bag, for their inspection The books were entitled 'Elizabethœ Angliœ Reginœ,' &c., 'Sœvissimum in Catholicos Edictum,' &c., with a translation in twenty-three double sheets of paper, written; also "Cartewrights" in English, and a Genealogie of the King's Majesty, and a written treatise. The two men apprehended were called William Rustate and William Valence, the translator, who had been committed to prison until their Lordship's pleasure should be known.
14th August, 1608.

IV. 8. Letter from E. Morley (fn. 8) to the Lord Mayor, informing him that the King, having caused to be compiled a book for the breeding of youth in their due allegiance, entitled 'God and the King,' (fn. 9) had committed the sole dispersing of it to his care, and requesting the Lord Mayor's assistance within his jurisdiction.
Dated Step: 4th January, 1615.


  • 1. 'The Discoverie of a Gaping Gulf, whereinto England is like to be swallowed by another French Marriage,' by J. Stubbs, 8vo., London, 1579. J. Stubbs, the Author, a Lawyer of Lincoln's Inn, William Page, the Publisher, and Singleton, the Printer, were tried under the Statute, 1 & 2 Philip and Mary, cap. 30, against the authors, dispersers, or printers of seditious words or rumours; Stubbs and Page had their right hands cut off with a butcher's knife and mallet; Singleton, the Printer, was pardoned.
  • 2. Francis, Duke of Anjou, born in 1554. Son of Henry II. and Catherine de Médicis, and brother of Henry III. of France. He was better known as the Duke of Alencon, having taken the title of Anjou in 1576, on the accession of his brother to the French throne. He came to England in August, 1579, as a suitor for the hand of Queen Elizabeth, and again in November, 1581. He was chosen Sovereign of the Netherlands in January, 1581, and installed Duke of Brabant in 1582. He died in 1584.
  • 3. Gidea Hall, Essex. It was begun by Alderman Sir Thomas Cooke, who was made Knight of the Bath by Edward IV., May 15th, 1465; he died in 1478. For an account of him, see Orridge's 'Citizens and their Rulers,' pp. 23, 28; Anthony, his Grandson, finished it. He entertained Queen Elizabeth there in 1568. Mary de Medicis lodged there upon her arrival in 1637. A view of the building is given in La Serre's account of the arrival of the Queen, and in Nicholls's 'Progresses,' Vol. i., p. 116.
  • 4. John Alymer.
  • 5. "Dry-fat or Dry-vat," a large basket or receiver for dry substances. "I'll undertake, and with much ease, to buy his birthright of him for a dry-fat of new Books." (Beaumont and Fletcher, 'Elder Brother,' Act I., Sc. 2.) In 1539 the agents of the Inquisition seized the sheets of Coverdale's Bible, wet from the printer's, and four great dry-vats full were sold to a haberdasher to wrap his caps in.
  • 6. William Webbe, Salter; elected Alderman of Queenhithe, June 6th, 1581; Sheriff, 1581; Lord Mayor, 1591–92; removed to Cordwainer, February 13th, 1593; President of Bridewell and Bethlem Hospitals, 1594, till his death, July 4th, 1599. He was buried at St. Dunstan's-in-the-East. He was the Son of John Webbe, of Reading, Berks, Clothier, where his family was seated for many years. His sister Lucy, by her second marriage with William Laud, Clothier, of the same town, was the mother of Archbishop Laud. His Wife Bennet was a daughter of Sir Christopher Draper, Lord Mayor, 1566. Her sister Anne married Sir Wolstan Dixie, Lord Mayor in 1585; and her other sister Bridget married Sir Henry Billingsley, Lord Mayor in 1596. The Pageant performed upon his admission into the office of Lord Mayor, entitled "Descensus Astrœœ," written by G. Peele, M.A. of Oxford, is the earliest in the collection of Pageants preserved in the Library of the Corporation.
  • 7. William Sebright, of the Inner Temple, Gent. The reversion of the office of Town Clerk was granted to him, September 29th, 1568. Appointed Town Clerk in the room of Anthony Stapleton, May 25th, 1574; surrendered his office, April 27th, 1613. He was the eldest son of Edward Sebright, of Blakeshall, in the county of Worcester. He purchased the Manor of Besford, in the said county. He was twice married: his first wife was a daughter of — Goldston, of London; his second was Elizabeth, daughter of James Morley, of London, widow of Thomas Boucher, or Bourcher, of London. This lady, by her first husband, was the mother of Sir James Bourcher, of Little Stambridge and Felsted, Essex, and Tower Hill, London, father of Elizabeth, the wife of Oliver Cromwell. W. Sebright died at his house in Lombard Street, October 27th, 1620, and was buried in the church of Edmund the King. He left no issue; and his nephew, Sir Edward Sebright, of Besford, Baronet, (ancestor of Sir John Gage Saunders-Sebright, the present Baronet), became his heir. By his will, dated 25th October, 1620, he left a messuage in Mark Lane, on which the New Corn Exchange now stands, others in the parish of St. Olave, Hart Street, and land at Stepney, Middlesex, to the poor of the parishes of Wolverley, Old Swinford, Kidderminster, Chaddesley Corbet, and Bewdley, Worcestershire; Kinfare, Staffordshire; and Alvely, Salop; and for the foundation of a Free Grammar School at Wolverley. For details of his charity, see Report, Charity Commissioners, 1833, vol. xxv., p. 600 et seq. See also Nash's 'Worcestershire,' vol. i., p. 78–9; 'Herald's Visitation of London,' 1568, published by the Harleian Society, p. 14; Morant's 'Essex,' vol. ii., p. 19; Noble's 'Life of Cromwell,' vol. i., p. 123.
  • 8. Edward, tenth Baron Morley, summoned to Parliament from 1581 till 1614; was one of the Peers who sat in judgment on Mary Queen of Scots. He died, April 1st, 1618.
  • 9. The work is entitled 'Deus et Rex: sive Dialogus, quo demonstratur sereniss: D. nostram Jacobum Regem.' Londini, 1616. (Portrait of the King.).