Notes on the aldermen, 1240-1500

The Aldermen of the City of London Temp. Henry III - 1912. Originally published by Corporation of the City of London, London, 1908.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.


Alfred P Beaven, 'Notes on the aldermen, 1240-1500', in The Aldermen of the City of London Temp. Henry III - 1912, (London, 1908) pp. 159-168. British History Online [accessed 21 May 2024].

Alfred P Beaven. "Notes on the aldermen, 1240-1500", in The Aldermen of the City of London Temp. Henry III - 1912, (London, 1908) 159-168. British History Online, accessed May 21, 2024,

Beaven, Alfred P. "Notes on the aldermen, 1240-1500", The Aldermen of the City of London Temp. Henry III - 1912, (London, 1908). 159-168. British History Online. Web. 21 May 2024,

Notes on the Aldermen, 1220-1912.

(In continuation of Vol. I., pp. 405-408.)

[It has not been thought necessary to record well-known historical facts, and except in the case of genealogical notes, I have not included such details as may be found in the articles relating to Aldermen in the Dictionary of National Biography, a list of which is appended for convenience of reference.]

c 1243. John Gisors. Probably identical with the personage of that name whose Will was enrolled April 27, 1282 [H.R. 13 (71)] and who was father of John de Gisors (Alderman 1282-96).
c 1246. Walter de Winton. He married a sister of Arnold fitz-Thedmar, the chronicler (Alderman c 1255-75).
1247. Adam de Basing. Grandson of Salomon de Basing (Mayor 1217).
c 1249. William fitz-Richard. One of the leaders of the party of the King (Henry III.) in the City in opposition to the baronial party of de Montfort.
c 1249. Alexander le Ferrun. One of the leaders of the baronial party in the City in opposition to the King.
c 1255. Arnold fitz-Thedmar. Son of 'Thedmar the Teutonic.' He compiled the Chronicles of the Mayors and Sheriffs of London, 1188-1274 (translated by the late Mr. H. T. Riley from the Liber de Antiquis Legibus), which is one of the chief authorities for the civic history of the period. His sisters married Walter de Winton, John Gisors and Ralph Eswy, who were all Aldermen, and the two last Mayors of London. He was a bitter opponent of the popular party in the City, who he asserts would have murdered him and his political friends but for the news of the battle of Evesham. Other Aldermen, who, according to fitz-Thedmar, had been marked out for assassination by the followers of Montfort, were John de Gisors, William fitz-Richard, Gregory de Rokesle, John Adrien, Geoffrey de Winton, Robert de Cornhill, William de Durham, Bartholomew de Castell.
c 1264. Philip le Taillour. The candidate of the Aldermanic party for the Mayoralty in opposition to the re-election of Walter Hervi in 1272. (For this contest see Chronicles of the Mayors and Sheriffs, trans. Riley, pp. 153-158, Dr. Sharpe's London and the Kingdom, i. 105, 106).
c 1265. Gregory de Rokesle. The circumstances of his refusal to meet the King's Justiciars at the Tower in his official capacity as Mayor, which resulted in the suspension of the Mayoralty for 13 years, are detailed in Liber Albus (trans. Riley), pp. 14, 15, and in Dr. Sharpe's London and the Kingdom, i., pp. 120-122.
c 1265. Walter Hervi. The leader of the popular party in the City after the disappearance of fitz-Thomas. He was deprived of his Aldermanry and 'for ever excluded from the Council of the City,' May 29, 1274. The 'articles as to the presumptuous acts and injuries of most notorious character' alleged against him are set forth in the Chronicles of the Mayors and Sheriffs of London (trans. Riley), pp. 174, 175.
c 1266. Edward le Blund. Father of John le Blund (Mayor 1301-8).
c 1269. Walter le Poter. Son-in-law of Geoffrey de Winton (Alderman, Sheriff 1248-9) and brother-in-law of Nicholas fitz-Geoffrey (Alderman, Sheriff 1273-4, 1280-1).
c 1271. Ralph le Blund. Son-in-law of Peter fitz-Alan (Mayor 1246-7).
c 1276. William Bukerel. Son of Stephen Bukerel (Alderman, Sheriff 1227-9).
c 1280. Richard de Eswy. He is described in the Will of Thomas de Basinge (Alderman, Sheriff 1269-70), as his 'brother' (i.e. brother-in-law or stepbrother).
c 1280. Ralph Crepyn or de Alegate. He is generally described as 'clericus;' he may possibly have been the 'Common Clerk' of the City before John de Banquelle. His vacation of his Aldermanry in 1285 was probably due to connection with the affray which resulted in the murder of Laurence Duket in Bow Church, the story of which is told in a footnote to Aungier's French Chronicle of London (trans. Riley), p. 19, and in Dr. Sharpe's London and the Kingdom, i., 119.
c 1282. John de Gisors. Son of John de Gisors (Mayor 1246, 1258-9), and father of John de Gisors (Mayor 1311-3, 1314-5), Anketin de Gisors and Henry de Gisors (Aldermen 1312-36 and 1330-5 respectively).
1294. Solomon [rectius Salomon] le Coteler. He is also called Salomon de Laufare. The name by which he is usually referred to ('le Coteler') obviously indicates his trade, that of a cutler.
1294. Walter de Rokesle was nephew of Gregory de Rokesle (Mayor 1274-81, 1284-5).
c 1297. Gregory de Northone. I have described him as 'Recorder, 1298-1303' (Vol. I., p. 378), but I cannot now find the note on which that statement is based. That he held an office equivalent to either the Recordership or the Town Clerkship may be inferred from Letter Book A, 82 b, where under date April 8, 1290, he is described as 'Clerk to the Warden of London.' His successor as Alderman of Candlewick, John de Wengrave, is the first Recorder definitely described by that title; I think he succeeded his predecessor in the Recordership as well as in the Aldermanry, though he appears not to have taken the oath, which may possibly have been newly framed then, till January, 1304, about a year after Gregory de Northone's death.
c 1297. Adam de Hallingberi was one of the executors of the Will of Henry le Waleys.
1298. William de Leyre. In his house Sir William Wallace was lodged the night before his trial.
1303. John de Wengrave. The writer of the French Chronicle of London records that 'he did much evil in his time to the Commons.' It is perhaps worthy of note that Wengrave and his seven immediate successors in the Recordership were all Aldermen of the City while holding this office, but since 1376 there has been no instance of the two offices being combined in a single person. Six of these Recorders (including Wengrave himself) were Aldermen of Candlewick, as also was Geoffrey de Northone, who was not improbably his predecessor; two were Aldermen of Bridge, one of whom migrated thither from Candlewick while Recorder, only one being unconnected with either of those Wards.
1306. John de Gisors. The third Mayor of the name. He was an adherent of Queen Isabella and Mortimer. (fn. 1)
1312. Anketyn de Gisors. His widow married Adam de Acres, afterwards Common Serjeant.
1312. Roger de Frowyk. Son of Henry de Frowyk (Alderman, Sheriff 1274–5), and grandson of Lawrence de Frowyk (Alderman, Sheriff 1246–7, 1251–2).
1315. Hamo de Chigwell. One of the chief civic supporters of Edward II. against the party of Queen Isabella and Mortimer. John de Cotun (Alderman 1319–30), who belonged to the latter faction, described Chigwell, when Mayor, as 'the vilest worm that had been in the City for more than twenty years,' and expressed his opinion that it would be a blessing if his head were severed from his body. For the later history of Chigwell, after the deposition of Edward II., see Dr. Sharpe's London and the Kingdom, i., 165–169, and the original authorities there cited.
1319. Robert Sely. Son of Thomas Sely (Alderman, Sheriff 1298–9).
1322. Richard de Betoyne. Son of William de Betoyne (Alderman, City Chamberlain, and Sheriff 1288–9). He and John de Gisors were two of the most prominent adherents of Queen Isabella and Mortimer. He had assisted, or at least connived at, Mortimer's escape from the Tower in 1323. A full account of his dispute with his colleagues in the parliamentary representation of the City on the question of removing the staple from England to the Continent is given in London and the Kingdom, i., 174–177.
1323. Walter Crepyn was a son of Ralph Crepyn or de Alegate (formerly Alderman of Cornhill) and closely related to Richard de Gloucester, his own predecessor in the Aldermanry of that Ward.
1327. Gregory de Nortone. Son of Geoffrey de Nortone (Alderman 1297–1303).
1330. Richard de la Pole. A native of Hull, brother of Sir William de la Pole, whose son Michael was created Earl of Suffolk, and was one of the favourites of Richard II.
1339. John de Northall. Father of Thomas de Northall, a Carmelite friar, who became Archbishop of Dublin and Lord Chancellor of Ireland.
1348. Henry Picard. He married a grand-daughter of John de Gisors (Mayor 1311–3, 1314–5) and was one of Richard Johnson's Nine Worthies of London.
1348. Adam de Bury. One of the three Aldermen (the others being Richard Lyons and John Pecche) who were removed from their Aldermanries in 1376 on account of charges of malversation. Bury, who was said to have appropriated money subscribed for the ransom of King John of France, escaped to Flanders and so was not tried. The other two were convicted of the charges severally brought against them, Lyons of embezzling the King's revenue and Pecche of extortion in the exercise of his monopoly of sweet wines.
1352. John de Stodeye. Two of his daughters married Sir Nicholas Brembre (Mayor 1377–8 and 1383–6) and Henry Vanner (Alderman, Sheriff 1391–2), respectively. Sir John Philipot (Mayor 1378–9) is said to have married another daughter, but this is doubtful; he is known to have married two other wives, one the daughter of Richard de Croydon (Alderman, Sheriff 1363–4).
1360. John de Bernes. By his Will he directed the proceeds of the sale of certain lands to be placed in a chest under four keys to be kept respectively by the Wardens of the Grocers, Mercers and Drapers, and the City Chamberlain. The chest is still preserved in the Town Clerk's office at Guildhall, and is known as 'Barnes's chest.' (Sharpe's Calendar of Husting Wills, ii., 180).
1363. James Andreu. His wife was niece of John de Caustone (Alderman, Sheriff 1324–5).
1365. William de Haldene. The last of the Aldermen who also were Recorders of the City.
1368. Sir William Walworth. He was one of Richard Johnson's 'Nine Worthies of London.' The events of his second mayoralty are too well known to need record here.
1372. Sir Nicholas Brembre. The leader of the party of the victualling trades in Richard II.'s reign, which supported the King against the party of John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster.
1375. John de Northampton. The leader of the non-victualling trades in Richard II.'s reign, which supported John of Gaunt. Nicholas Twyford (elected Alderman the same year) was one of his chief lieutenants.
1375. John Maryns. He is described in his Will as 'John Foot alias Maryns.'
1377. William Wodehous. He is described in his Will as 'William Power, called Wodehous.' He had three wives, the second of whom bore the singular name of Anselina.
1377. William Tonge. He was buried in All Hallows Church, Barking, where there is the oldest brass in London to his memory.
1378. John Vyne. He had been apprentice to James Andreu (Mayor 1367-8), of whose Will he was executor.
1379. John Heende. He built the Church of St. Swithin by London Stone.
1381. John Fresshe. Two of his daughters married Aldermen, viz., Walter Cotton (Sheriff 1411–2) and Walter Newenton (Alderman of Langbourn 1399–1400).
1382. Nicholas Exton. One of the chief adherents of Brembre and the victualling party in civic politics.
1383. John Fraunceys. He is described in his Will as 'John Godman, otherwise called Fraunceys.'
1383. Geoffrey Crymelford. Son-in-law of R. Hatfield (Alderman, Sheriff 1371–2).
1390. William Brampton. Dr. Wylie in his History of England under Henry IV. (ii., 71–77), gives an account of a mission of Brampton (in conjunction with the Speaker of the House of Commons and a clerical envoy) to Conrad of Jungingen, High Master of the Teutonic Knights, to adjust trade disputes which had arisen with the Hanse Towns. His statement that on his return voyage to England in October, 1405, 'the ship was lost with all hands and he and the papers went to the bottom' is clearly inaccurate, as Brampton made a Will in London on November 6th, 1406, which was proved a week later.
1391. Richard Whytyngdon ('Whittington'). Much of his history as related in popular stories is legendary. The best account of him is contained in the article on him by Professor Tait in the Dictionary of National Biography.
1397. John Wodecok. At the close of his mayoralty the custom of having a solemn celebration of mass before the election of a new Mayor was introduced, probably at his instance. He was a pious man and left bequests in his Will to several churches and religious houses. Whittington was the first Mayor to be elected after a religious service. The custom continues in a modified form to the present time, the election being always preceded by divine service (Dr. Sharpe's London and the Kingdom, i., 252, 253).
1402. Thomas Fauconer. He built Moorgate, which was afterwards rebuilt by Sir W. Hampton in his Mayoralty (1472–3).
1402. Robert Chichele. Brother of Henry Chichele, Archbishop of Canterbury. He built the church of St. Stephen's, Walbrook.
1403. Richard Merlawe. He was one of the five 'Treasurers of War'—officials appointed by the Parliament of 1404 to have the disposal of the supplies granted in that year, independently of the King's Ministers. Two other of the five were Aldermen of London, viz., John Hadle (the senior member of the Court, Mayor 1379–80, 1383–4) and Thomas Knolles (Mayor 1399–1400, 1410–1).
1403. Nicholas Wotton. He was great grandfather of Sir Edward and of Dr. Nicholas Wotton, Privy Councillors to Henry VIII. and well-known diplomatists, the former of whom was grandfather of Sir Edward, created Lord Wotton, and of Sir Henry Wotton, to whom is attributed the definition of an ambassador as 'an honest man sent to lie abroad for the good of his country.'
1407. Henry Halton. His widow married John Welles (Alderman, Mayor 1431-2).
1407. William Chichele. Brother of the Archbishop and of Robert Chichele, his predecessor in the Aldermanry of Aldgate. He married a daughter of William Baret (Alderman, Sheriff 1379–80), and his son John, who was City Chamberlain, married a daughter of Thomas Knolles (Mayor 1399–1400, 1410–1).
1411. William Sevenoke. Son of William Rumschedde of Sevenoke: he is always referred to by the place name and not by his original patronymic. He was admitted to the freedom of the Grocers, December 20th, 1397 (Letter Book H, fo. 316), although he had served his apprenticeship to an ironmonger. He founded a free school and almshouse at his native place, and is commemorated by Richard Johnson as one of the 'Nine Worthies of London.'
1415. John Gedney. He at first refused to accept the office of Alderman (which he subsequently held for 34 years, being Mayor twice) and his obstinacy was only overcome by his committal to prison and the forcible closing of his shop. He married in 1444 the widow of Robert Large (Mayor 1439–40), for which both parties did penance, she having taken a vow of chastity after her first husband's death.
1416. Ralph Barton. Brother of Henry Barton (Mayor 1416–7, 1428–9).
1416. John Reynwell. Son of William Reynwell (Alderman 1397–1403). Stow records the drastic measures which he took with the Lombard vintners from whose wine 'there issued a most loathsome savour.'
1418. Robert Wydington. Son-in-law of Richard Odiham (City Chamberlain 1380–91). [The occurrence of the three similar names, Richard Whytingdon, Robert Whytingham, Robert Widyngton, as those of contemporary Aldermen, has sometimes caused confusion.]
1420. John Coventre. He was co-executor with John Carpenter, the Town Clerk, of the Will of Richard Whytingdon (Whittington). He is said to have been descended from Henry de Coventre (Alderman, Sheriff 1259–60, 1273–4) and was ancestor of Lord Chancellor Coventry, of Sir William, Sir John and Henry Coventry, three leading politicians of Charles II.'s reign, and of the later Earls of Coventry.
1420. John Welles. He was appointed Warden of Norwich by the King in 1437, when the Mayor and some of the Aldermen of that City were deprived of their offices on account of riots and disturbances. Gregory (Collections of a London Citizen, p. 184), in recording his death, describes him as 'the nobylle Aldyrman.' He gave a Sword of State to the City of Bristol, which bears on its hilt the inscription— 'John Wellis, of London, Grocer, Mair, Gave to Bristol this Sword faire.'
1423. Sir William Estfeld. He caused the conduit in Aldermanbury to be made.
1429. Thomas Walsingham. He obtained his discharge from serving as Alderman on account of his being 'much occupied with the King's service,' and in lieu of paying a fine he undertook to 'glaze in the best manner the Eastern gable or window of Guildhall.'
1429. Stephen Broun. Younger brother of Sir Robert Broun, of Betchworth, who was ancestor of the Viscounts Montagu.
1429. Robert Large. William Caxton was apprenticed to him. Large's widow married John Gedney (see above).
1434. John Hatherle. This is doubtless the correct form of the name, being that of the signature to his Will, but it is frequently written Atherlc in the City records, some of the scribes apparently disregarding aspirates.
1435. William Gregory. The compiler of one of the best known civic chronicles.
1435. Ralph Holland. He was returned three times in succession (1439, 1440, 1441) to the Court of Aldermen as one of the two from whom the Mayor should be elected, but was passed over on each occasion, and never served that office.
1439. John Sevenok. The Court of Aldermen appointed Proctors to oppose the confirmation by the Bishop of London of Sevenok's election as Prior of Holy Trinity on the ground of immorality, but their opposition was ineffectual.
1441. John Norman. He, when Mayor, introduced the custom of going from London to Westminster by barge instead of on horseback to be presented to the King or his representative. The alteration was made in consideration of the Mayor's infirmity, but it was continued until 1657, when the horseback procession was revived.
1442. Nicholas Wyfold. Son-in-law of Thomas Catteworth (Mayor 1443–4). His widow married (as her third husband) John Howard, 1st Duke of Norfolk of that house, (the 'Jockey of Norfolk' who was killed at Bosworth). His daughter was the second wife of Lord Marney, one of Henry VIII.'s courtiers.
1444. Robert Horne. Was imprisoned in Newgate by Jack Cade's mob, and only saved his life by paying a large ransom.
1444. Stephen Forster. Enlarged Ludgate Prison.
1444. Simon Eyre. Originally an upholsterer, was admitted to the freedom of the Drapers' Company April 4, 1419 (Letter Book I., fo. 128b). He built Leadenhall as a granary for the City. His son Thomas married a daughter of Robert Large (Mayor 1439–40). Fuller in his Worthies says of him that he left 3,000 marks to charitable uses, so that 'his bounty, like Saul, stands higher than any other from the shoulder upwards.'
1444. John Derby. Fabyan relates a story of his being fined £50 for not removing a dead dog from his door and for using opprobrious language to the Mayor (John Yonge).
1445. Thomas Pomeroy. His election as Prior of Holy Trinity was disputed, and although it received the Royal assent on April 21, 1445, similar recognition was accorded William Westkarre on May 23 following. Pomeroy was finally confirmed and received the temporalities on February 19, 1446.
1445. Thomas Canynges. Elder brother of William Canynges, the founder of St. Mary Redcliffe Church, Bristol, of which city both were natives. He appears to have been the ancestor of George Canning, Earl Canning (Viceroy of India) and Lord Stratford de Redcliffe ('the Great Eltchi'), and this descent is ascribed to those statesmen in the Dictionary of National Biography (s.v. William Canynges), but this work contradicts itself—a not uncommon occurrence—by making William Canynges their ancestor, a few pages earlier in the same volume (s.v. George Canning). To add to the difficulty Burke's Peerage (s.v. Garvagh) gives Thomas as the ancestor, while Burke's Extinct Peerage (s.v. Canning) substitutes John, the eldest brother of Thomas and William.
1446. Geoffrey Feldynge. The assumption of Orridge (The Citizens of London and their Rulers) that he was the ancestor of the Earls of Denbigh appears to be erroneous, and I have not found satisfactory confirmation of Stow's statement that he was a member of the Privy Council under Henry VI. and Edward IV.
1446. Sir William Cantelowe. He was imprisoned in Dudley Castle in the year 1456 as being supposed to be concerned in an attack made by the young mercers of London on the houses of the Lombard merchants (Dr. Sharpe's London and the Kingdom, i., 292).
1448. Philip Malpas. A strong adherent of the Lancastrian Party and elected an Alderman at the personal recommendation of the King (Henry VI.). He was specially obnoxious to Jack Cade's followers, who sacked his house, having previously induced the Common Council to petition for his dismissal from the Aldermanry. It may be inferred from a passage in the Chronicle III., Vitellius A xvi., fo. 120, that he had gone over to the Yorkists by 1461. His two daughters married respectively Sir Thomas Cook (Mayor 1462–3), and Sir Ralph Josselyn (Mayor 1464–5, 1476–7).
1449. William Marowe. His daughter married Robert Throckmorton, said to have been a Privy Councillor to Henry VII. and ancestor to the Throckmorton Baronets.
1451. William Dere. I can find no mention of his Company during his Aldermanic period, but he is not improbably identical with the William Dere, 'peautrer,' named in Letter Book K, fo. 165b, about December, 1436.
1452. Geoffrey Boleyn. He married the daughter and heiress of Lord Hoo and Hastings, and was grandfather of Thomas Boleyn, Earl of Wiltshire, whose daughter married Henry VIII. and was mother of Queen Elizabeth. He was also (through Mary, Anne Boleyn's elder sister) ancestor of Nelson and of the late Earl of Kimberley (see pedigree in Orridge The Citizens of London and their Rulers, p. 186). He had originally been a hatter and was translated to the Mercers February 1, 1436, (Letter Book K, fo. 158b).
1456. Sir Thomas Cook. Son-in-law of Philip Malpas (Alderman, Sheriff 1439–40). His great grandson, Sir Anthony Cooke, had two daughters, who married respectively William Cecil, Lord Burghley (Queen Elizabeth's chief adviser) and Lord Keeper Sir Nicholas Bacon, whose son was Francis Bacon (Lord Chancellor) the great philosopher. Mr. Welch (in The Dictionary of National Biography) and Mr. C. L. Kingsford in his notes to Chronicles of London, speak of him as a Yorkist leader in the city, the former explicitly and the latter apparently regarding his knighthood at the coronation of Edward IV.'s Queen as evidence of his political sympathies. But that batch of knights included John de Vere, Earl of Oxford, a keen Lancastrian partisan, and also Sir John Plomer who appears to have belonged to that party. If Cook ever had any Yorkist sympathies they were not very deep or lasting, and he was certainly a partisan of Henry VI. at the time of his restoration in 1470, and suffered heavily afterwards for his support of the Lancastrians.
1456. Sir Ralph Josselyn. A younger brother of Thomas Josselyn from whom the Earls of Roden are descended. Fuller (Worthies, ii., 57) in reference to his knighthood of the Bath, remarks that 'there is more of the carpet than of the camp in that Order.' He repaired the City wall between Aldgate and Aldersgate.
1457. Sir Ralph Verney. Ancestor of the Verneys of Claydon (Baronets and Earls Verney) and of the present Lord Braye.
1460. Sir John Yonge. Son of Thomas Yonge, Mayor of Bristol, who was stepfather of Thomas Canynges (Mayor 1456–7).
1461. Robert Bassett. He married the widow of the 4th Lord Bergavenny, who upon his death married Sir John Stokton (Mayor 1470–1).
1461. Sir John Stokton. He was Mayor during the temporary restoration of Henry VI. (1470–1), when he conveniently became ill and took to his bed, and stayed there, leaving Sir Thomas Cook, who was a Lancastrian partisan, to act as his deputy.
1462. Sir William Hampton. Fuller (Worthies, i., 566), records that he was 'the first that set up stocks in every ward for the punishment of vagabonds.'
1463. John Lok. Ancestor of John Locke, the philosopher. His grandson, Sir William Lok, was Alderman and Sheriff 1548–9.
1463. William Constantyn. Great grandson of John Costantyn (Alderman 1349–58).
1464. Humphrey Hayford. He was charged with treason and deprived of his Aldermanry of Langbourn in 1463, on account of his Lancastrian sympathies, but afterwards returned to the Court of Aldermen, being elected for Cripplegate.
1464. William Edward. His widow was twice remarried (1) to Robert Revell (Alderman, Sheriff 1490–1) and (2) to Sir Ralph Astry (Mayor 1493–4).
1464. Sir John Plomer. Though one of the Aldermen who received the Knighthood of the Bath at the coronation of Edward IV.'s Queen, he was a Lancastrian, and was deprived of his Aldermanry and charged with treason on account of his political sympathies.
1465. Sir Bartholomew James. He married the widow of Thomas Oulegrave, (Mayor 1467–8).
1468. Stephen Fabyan. He was committed to Newgate for refusing to accept his second election to an Aldermanry (in 1469). He was probably nearly related to Robert Fabyan, the chronicler (Sheriff 1493–4), but I have not found any definite evidence on the point.
1468. Sir John Crosby. He built the house in Bishopsgate, inhabited by Sir Thomas More 1518–23, known as Crosby Place, which in the 19th century was occupied as a restaurant. In 1910 the great hall was removed and re-erected at Chelsea.
1468. Robert Drope. His widow married Edward Grey, Viscount Lisle, brother of Sir John Grey, the first husband of Elizabeth Woodville, who afterwards married Edward IV.
1469. Richard Gardyner. When Mayor he fined one of his Sheriffs, Robert Byfeld, £50 for 'unfittyng words which the said Robert gave unto the Mair.' The fine was used for 'the Reparacion of the Condytes' (see Kingsford Chronicles of London, p. 188).
1470. John Croke. Son-in-law of William Gregory, the Chronicler (Mayor 1451–2). His daughter married Sir William Stokker (Mayor 1485).
1470. Sir John Browne. He was father of William Browne (Mayor 1513–4), and uncle of William Browne (Mayor 1507–8). It is a curious coincidence that both William Brownes died in their respective years of office as Mayor. John Browne was ancestor of the Earls of Pomfret, the Lords Petre and the CaveBrowne-Cave Baronets.
1472. Thomas Bledlowe. His grand-daughter married Lord Williams of Thame, one of Queen Mary's Ministers.
1473. Sir Edmund Shaa. One of the chief adherents of Richard Duke of Gloucester (Richard III.) and brother of the preacher who asserted the invalidity of Edward IV.'s marriage and consequent illegitimacy of Edward V. in a sermon at St. Paul's Cross. He is said to have been one of Richard's Privy Council. He founded Stockport Grammar School. He also left money in his Will for the rebuilding of Cripplegate. He was father-in-law of William Browne (Mayor 1513–4).
1473. Sir Thomas Hill. He died when Mayor, and his successor in the Mayoralty (Sir W. Stokker) five days later, four other Aldermen (J. Stokker, T. Breteyn, T. Northland and R. Rawson) also dying within the space of a month. (fn. 2) They were victims of an epidemic called the 'Sweating Sickness.'
1476. Richard Rawson. Father of Sir John Rawson, created Viscount Clontarf, Lord Treasurer of Ireland.
1476. Sir Henry Colet. Father of John Colet, Dean of St. Paul's, who was the founder of St. Paul's School, and the friend of Erasmus, Sir Thomas More, and the chief English humanists of the Renaissance.
1478. Thomas Ilome. He rebuilt the great conduit in Cheap.
1480. Sir William Horne. Stow records a legend that 'King Edward IV. so named him because he was a most excellent blower on a borne.' His original name is said to have been Littlebury.
1480. John Stoks. The following extract from the Patent Rolls under date May 17, 1480. is worthy of reproduction for its comprehensive catalogue of garblable articles:—
Whereas the king lately by letters patent granted to the mayor, citizens and commonalty of London the office of garbling of all kinds of spices in the port and city of London and they have appointed John Stokes, citizen and grocer of London, as garbler in the said port and city, and because of the good garbling there many kinds of spices are taken to Sandwich and Southampton, where they are not duly garbled, the king hereby appoints the said John, during pleasure, as garbler of anise, cumin, worm seed, wax, alum, grains of paradise, ginger, cloves, mace, cinnamon, galingale, rhubarb, scammony, spikenard, senna, turpentine, dyers' grains, zedoary, almonds, rice, dates, euphorbium, stavesacre, cassia, fistula, nutmeg, long pepper, mastic, frankincense, and other spices and drugs and all merchandise, which should be garbled, in the towns of Sandwich and Southampton, receiving fees as in the city of London, with all other profits.
1481. Thomas Percy. There is an interesting account of the forcible ejectment of Percy from the Priorate in 1494 by the Bishop of London (Richard Hill) and of his restoration and resignation later in the year, in Cotton MS. Vitellius A xvi. See Kingsford's Chronicles of London, pp. 199, 201, 203, also Victorian History of the Counties of England—London, p. 474. Twelve years later, after two successors had intervened, Percy was restored to the Priorate which he retained till his death in 1512. There is a curious error in the Victorian County History, the writer asserting that Percy was not Prior in 1506 or 1509, referring to Letters and Papers Henry VIII., xvi., 503 (15) and Calendar of Ancient Deeds A 1773. It happens that the document at the first of these references is a lease by Prior Newton in February, 1506, some months before his death and Percy's restoration, and the second, in which Bradwell is mentioned as Prior, is wrongly calendared under date 4 May, 1 Henry VIII. (1509), whereas the MS. itself, which I have inspected in the presence of an official at the Record Office, is quite clearly dated 8 Henry VIII. (1516)—an instance of the way in which errors are perpetuated.
1482. John Mathewe. He is said by Stow to have been the first bachelor Mayor. Fuller in his Worthies (Ed. Nuttall i. 40) has a quaint observation on the value of a help-meet for the chief magistrate. 'It seemeth that a Lady Mayoress is something more than ornamental to a Lord Mayor, their wives' great portions or good providence much advantaging their estates to be capable of so high a dignity.'
1485. Sir Ralph Astry. Apprentice and afterwards partner of Sir William Hampton (Mayor 1472–3), of whose Will he was executor. He married a lady who had previously been the wife successively of two Aldermen. W. Edward, (Mayor 1471–2), and R. Revell (Sheriff 1490–1). He restored the Church of St. Martin, Vintry.
1485. Sir John Tate. Brother of Robert Tate (Mayor 1488–9).
1485. Sir John Percyvale. Founder of Macclesfield Grammar School.
1485. Hugh Clopton. Well known for his benefactions to Stratford-on-Avon, where he built the great stone bridge, and the house afterwards known as New Place, at which Shakspeare resided in his later years. He was, like his immediate predecessor in the Mayoralty (Mathewe), a bachelor.
1485. Sir William Capel. He was one of the victims of Empson and Dudley, the instruments of Henry VII.'s extortions. Thomas Kneseworth (Mayor 1505–6) and Sir Lawrence Aylmer (Mayor 1508) were also sufferers, all three being imprisoned and heavily fined. Capel Court derives its name from Sir W. Capel. His son, Sir Giles Capel, was ancestor of the Earls of Essex of the present line; his elder daughter married the first Marquess of Winchester (Lord High Treasurer to Edward VI., Mary and Elizabeth), and was ancestress to the Dukes of Bolton and the present Marquess of Winchester; his younger daughter married John, Lord Zouché.
1490. Henry Cote. He built St. Dunstan's Chapel, Foster Lane.
1494. Robert Fabyan. The well-known Chronicler.
1496. Sir John Shaa. Nephew of Sir Edmund Shaa (Mayor 1482–3). He established the annual Mayoral banquet at Guildhall. He also instituted the practice of riding in procession from Guildhall to the State barge when going to Westminster to be sworn.
1496. Thomas Wood. A benefactor to St. Peter's Church, Wood Street.
1498. Sir Bartholomew Rede. He purchased Crosby Place in 1501.
1499. Thomas Wyndout. Son-in-law of Thomas Norlonde (Alderman, Sheriff 1483–4). He was apprenticed to Sir Henry Colet (Mayor 1486–7, 1495–6), and one of the executors of his Will was Thomas Baldry (Mayor 1523–4).
1499. Sir Richard Haddon. Son-in-law of Robert Byfeld who was fined when Sheriff by the Mayor (Richard Gardyner) for insulting him (see p. 165). His wife's sister married William Welbeck (Alderman, Sheriff 1492–3).
1499. Sir Stephen Jenyns. Founder of Wolverhampton Grammar School. He also built a great part of St. Andrew's Undershaft Church.
1500. William Browne (i.). Nephew of Sir John Browne (Mayor 1480–1) and cousin to William Browne (Mayor 1513–4).
1500. James Wylford. Brother of Edward Wylford, Provost of Oriel College, Oxford, and father of John Wylford (Alderman, Sheriff 1544–5) and of Nicholas Wylford (M.P. for the City 1542–4). In March, 1503, he was temporarily suspended from coming to the Court of Aldermen on 'account of contumelious words openly spoken in full Court to the Mayor and Aldermen.' [Rep. 1, fo. 129 (170)].


  • 1. . I have erroneously dated his death 1329, in vol. I. (p. 379). This date, which was taken from the Stocken MSS. in the Guildhall Library, but for which I can find no other authority, seemed probable from the fact that Gisors practically disappears from all public and civic life after 1327. He died in January, 1351: Will dated January 5, enrolled January 19 [H.R. 78 (248)]. The note which Dr. Sharpe (Calendar of Husting Wills, i., 643) transcribes from Stow is ambiguous and misleading, as it apparently distinguishes between the Mayor of 1311 and the John Giso's who died in 1350-1, and it is almost impossible to determine from the vagueness of Stow's use of pronouns whether he takes the latter to be a son or a brother (having the same baptismal name) of the earlier Mayor. It is clear from the Will that the testator was an old man, as he had a married grand-daughter: moreover, the names of his father and mother (John and Margery) are those of the Alderman who died in 1296, and his wife. It is to be noted that the elder John who died in 1296, bequeathed his 'New Hall in the parish of St. Mildred, in Bradestreet' to his son Thomas, and that this hall afterwards became the property of the testator of 1351, and that the latter also had a son Thomas, as he bequeathed 'Gysors Hall, in the parish of St. Mildred de Bradestreet' to his grand-daughter Felicia, daughter of Thomas Gysors. (Stow's account of the descent of the hall given under Bread Street Ward differs from that which he gives under Vintry Ward.)
  • 2. I have not found the exact dates of death of these six Aldermen, and I have therefore ex abundanti cautela stated the period as within the space of a month. Dr. Sharpe (London and the Kingdom, i. 317) says that 'the pestilence carried off two Mayors and six Aldermen within the space of a week', referring as authority to Hecker's Epidemics of the Middle Ages, p. 168, The 'six Aldermen' were certainly inclusive of, not additional to, the 'two Mayors.' See also Kingsford Chronicles of London, p. 193.